Archive for November, 2016

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I have a treat to share with you.

Check out the authors guest post about their choices for sexy vampires….

Let us know in the comments who your favorite ones are!

Hello! Our name is Jane Ederlyn and we’re a paranormal writing duo. Our book, Reborn, was just released last month. Not only is it the first book in our series, Princess of the Blood, but it’s also our debut.

Our heroine, Marie, is a vampire of royal descent and quite the fashionista, but today we’re talking about some of our favorite male vampires in television and movies. Take a look at our list and see if your favorites made it:

  • Luke Evans, Dracula—Dracula Untold. After seeing the movie, he escalated to the top of our vampire list.
  • Gary Oldman, Dracula—Bram Stoker’s Dracula. A classic. And the way this Dracula looks at his Mina…sigh. Johnathan who?
  • Alexander Skarsgård, Eric Northman—True Blood. He was yummy as our favorite Viking Sheriff. We love book version even more.

Stephen Moyer, Vampire Bill—True Blood. Unlike Eric, television version was better. But our heart still belongs to Northman. Sorry Bill. L

  • Brad Pitt, Louis—Interview with a Vampire. We won’t admit how many times we collectively saw this movie. Ahh, Louis!

Tom Cruise, Lestat—Interview with a Vampire. We were wary about his casting as Lestat, but by the end of the movie we loved him too.

Antonio Banderas, Armand—Interview with a Vampire. He was a little hard to understand, but gorgeous so who cares.

  • Robert Pattinson, Edward Cullen—Twilight. Hello. All that angst…those smoldering looks. We were team Edward, but we’ll admit during shirtless Jacob moments… constraint was necessary not to bail on our vampires.

Peter Facinelli, Carlisle Cullen—Twilight.

Kellan Lutz, Emmett Cullen—Twilight.

Jackson Rathbone, Jasper Hale—Twilight.

  • Ian Somerhalder, Damon Salvatore—The Vampire Diaries. When he’s bad, he’s better. And those amazing eyes!

Paul Wesley, Stefan Salvatore—The Vampire Diaries.

Joseph Morgan, Klaus—The Vampire Diaries/The Originals.

  • Wesley Snipes, Blade—Blade. He was only half vampire, but he had to make the list for his amazing pecs. Best shirtless half-vampire ever. J
  • Karl Urban, Black Hat—Priest. A train ride with Urban and Paul Bettany, where can we buy a ticket?
  • Adrian Paul, Aaron Gray—The Breed.
  • Kiefer Sutherland, David—The Lost Boys. All the Lost Boys really in their 80’s splendor. Close your eyes…eeny, meeny, miny, moe. You can’t go wrong, but make sure you have hairspray available if you want a midnight rendezvous with one of these cuties. J
  • Colin Farrell, Jerry Dandridge—Fright Night 2011. So deliciously evil! Apples anyone?
  • Gerard Butler, Dracula—Dracula 2000.
  • David Boreanaz, Angel—Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

James Marsters, Spike—Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

* Bonus mentions to Bela Lugosi, Christopher Lee, Frank Langella, and Johnny Depp. Langella’s 1979 Dracula with that red lighting love scene was sexy. Ooh la la. J And you can’t have a list without Depp.

These are the vampires that came to mind when we thought sexy. Can you add to the list? And most importantly…which one is your favorite?

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Reborn

Princess of the Blood

Book One

by Jane Ederlyn

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Genre: Paranormal

Publisher: Soul Mate Publishing

Date of Publication: 10/19/16

ISBN: 978-1-61935-861-4 / ASIN: B01MEBSN40

Number of pages: 322 / Word Count: 93,000

Cover Artist: Anna-Lena Spies

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Tagline: Wary, high-heeled vampire finds sanctuary in the arms of a hot werewolf whose love ignites her worst nightmare.

Synopsis

Marie Josette d’Orgemont, cousin to Louis XVI, watched in horror, as a rogue creature took her husband’s life before turning on her. A powerful vampire swept in and spared her life, but she never suspected that surviving meant immortality or the price she’d have to pay to protect her surviving son.

Centuries later in Miami, with her family on the verge of extinction, Marie is preoccupied with the continuation of her human bloodline. When she meets sexy and persistent, Odin Ulfsson, his icy-blue gaze and burning touch are hard to resist.

Will a forbidden romance with the Nordic werewolf be the key to her happiness or will it set in motion a wrath that endangers not only her last human heir but her entire existence?

Amazon

Excerpt 

A hot breath burned the top of her shoulder. She froze, realizing too late she had misread the werewolf signaling behind her. How could she have been so careless? She pushed all thoughts of Abby away and mentally prepared to fight.

He towered over her, at least seven feet tall. She was a petite five feet two inches with maybe another four in heels. Despite the differential between them, what disturbed her was his stealth and agility. He had crept up behind her without her sensing him.

As he breathed, he edged closer and closer until their bodies touched and the heat emitting from his body seared through her like brushfire.

A wave of desire, fanned by the heat of his skin, coursed through her with such momentum she swayed toward him. She was dimly aware of the sheer insanity of her predicament. One minute she was fighting a lesser of his kind and the next she swelled with desire for this werewolf. What was happening to her?

He leaned into her and nudged her neck.

She couldn’t move, could only stand there and suffer the exquisite heat of their bodies molded together.

He growled, and she closed her eyes, absorbing his scent. Unlike what she had just fought, he smelled like the earth scorched by sunlight. He was exciting, and images of a blazing hearth and tangled limbs came to mind. She wanted him and the realization was as surprising as it was embarrassing.

She tilted her face up and was immediately lost in the gold depths of his eyes, more human than beast. Different. Time and place disappeared into nothingness.

He reached for her finally and the movement snapped their connection.

“State your business,” she hissed. Her hands closed into fists.

He sniffed.

“Enough, dog.” She struck him, jolting him backward. He was quicker and bigger than the others but still no match for her. Or was he? She dismissed the errant thought. He was just an animal and she was a Princess of the Blood with the essence of an ancient master running through her.

Catching him by the mane, she flipped him forward. The huge blond and silver-haired thing landed hard in front of her, but immediately recovered, jumping up into an offensive position. He growled, but didn’t attack. He backed away as upright as a human, with hind claws that clanked on the gravel.

His neck stretched and the aura around him thickened and sizzled. After a couple of pops, he shifted from wolf mixture into full naked human.

She gaped.

Author Jane Ederlyn

Jane Ederlyn

Jane Ederlyn is the alter ego of a writing duo from South Florida.

Jane, a registered nurse by day, by night lives to create havoc and conflict in their stories, relentlessly strategizing ways to kill off one more character.

Ederlyn, a cruise-line professional by day, by night loves to plot meticulous happily-ever-afters for the hero and heroine, often battling Jane to save her favorites.

They can usually be found at their favorite Barnes and Noble sipping lattes and pondering “what ifs?” or at the mall shoe shopping.

Website / Twitter / Facebook / Goodreads / Instagram / Pinterest

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Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew!

For a list of my reviews go HERE.

For a list of free eBooks updated daily go HERE

To see all of my giveaways click on the lucky Flamingos below!

 

Welcome to the Urban Fantasy, Paranormal Romance, and Dystopian Reader Appreciation Giveaway!

We’re so glad you stopped by! In this giveaway, EVERYONE who enters will win TWENTY FREE – EXCLUSIVE – ebooks by the sponsoring authors (to be delivered at the conclusion of the giveaway), and one GRAND PRIZE winner will also receive a $1000 Amazon Gift Card! The Winner will be announced on February 1st at our Facebook Event. The winner will also receive an email directly.There will ALSO be other prizes and giveaways happening at that event between now and our Grand Prize announcement! So make sure you mark yourself as attending so you don’t miss those great opportunities to win more prizes and snag more freebies!

VIEW BOOKS FROM THE SPONSORS HERE!

 

Here are a couple of sneak peeks!

 

ETERNAL NIGHT, by Jade Kerrion

Ashra’s hand trailed across Jaden’s muscled torso. He made it easy for her to be gentle. His body trembled as if he longed for her. His mouth was hungry for her kiss. He arched up against her, as if craving more. His need was like a living creature, wild and aching for her touch.

Eyes closed, Ashra shivered. Only one other person had desired her as much.

And he was dead.

She forced her way through the memories of pale bodies tangled upon cool silk sheets. When her soul-sucking power leeched out, it found no opposition. Images of the human’s life rewound in a blaze of vivid sights, sounds, and sensations.

Ashra looked up at Tera, her smile little more than a barely perceptible curve of her lips. “He fancies himself the protector of the child of prophecy. Was she among those taken tonight?”

Tera nodded.

Ashra chuckled, the sound without humor. “It’s a pity her genetic heritage wasn’t sufficiently superior to prevent her from being culled.”

“There’s more. Go deep.”

She pushed past the blackness at the start of his memories, expecting deeper darkness. Instead, the colors shifted into shades of ochre and gray. Memories, older than his body, resided in his soul; memories of an Earth long since lost to them—a planet surrounded and nourished by water; images of tall buildings glistening beneath a benevolent sun, and of thriving cities filled with the bustle of humans; memories of quiet and intimate conversations beneath a silver moon, the same silver moon that now graced Malum Turris with its light, though a thousand years older and viewed only from beneath the protection of the dome.

She saw herself as he must have seen her, a much-younger icrathari, still hopeful for the future, never realizing that the Earth they had all known and loved was irretrievably lost. Had she ever looked that vulnerable? Had her smile ever been so beautiful, so filled with love as she looked upon—

“Rohkeus?” Oh, blessed Creator, was that stricken whisper her voice?

Ashra pulled back and stared at the human. Her mouth dropped open. Her heart pounded in her chest, its beat erratic. It couldn’t be. It simply couldn’t be—

She looked up at Tera. The other icrathari nodded.

Rohkeus’s soul reborn…in a human.

Ashra threw her head back and laughed, a despairing sound. Her prince, her love, reduced to a human? Her slender fingers coiled into fists. Her golden eyes glittering, she pushed away from him, though her body trembled from the loss of his warmth. No, the human was not Rohkeus; he could never be Rohkeus.

Steeling herself against the gasp of pain that escaped from his lips as the anesthetizing effect of her kiss faded, Ashra rose to her feet with sinuous grace. “He is not one of us. Not anymore.” Nothing had been more devastating than losing Rohkeus to a human assassin. To see his soul reborn in that contemptible and weak race was an insult to the person Rohkeus had been.

“Should we turn him into a vampire?” Tera asked.

“Kill him. Set Rohkeus’s soul free.”

A Cross to Bear: A Gabriella Cross Paranormal Romance Book 1

All around her, the sounds of baying wolves echoed in the night. Trees slapped her face as she ran, and she tripped more than once. She was crying now and mumbling to herself, terrified. She dared not look back, knowing that the wolves were pursuing her. She came out of the woods into a clearing leading to a tall hill. The howls came from all directions. Shadows flew through the woods in her peripheral vision, and Gabby cried out. She fell again, skinning her knee badly on a jagged rock. In her terrified state, she felt no pain, but continued as fast as she could and ran up the hill.

A snarl came from directly behind her, and she instinctively turned and cried out. A wolf was bearing down on her fast. She turned and raised a hand as the beast leapt at her with gleaming claws leading the way.

“NO!” Gabby cried.

To her amazement, the wolf changed form in mid-flight and turned into a naked man. He landed at her feet on all fours and snarled at her.

“Get away from me!” she screamed.

The naked man backed away from her warily, glancing down at his human hands with a look of confusion and shock. More wolves were coming out of the woods. They stopped when they saw the one who had turned into a human in the light of the full moon.

Gabby wasted no time considering her luck and ran as fast as she could up the hill.

“Gabriella Cross, stop!” Michael’s voice rose up over the howls.

Gabby could hardly see through her tears. She didn’t dare look back, knowing that she would find death closing in on her. She reached the top of the hill and ran across the flat expanse of rocky earth.

“Gabriella!” came the voice again.

The wolves were gaining on her.

She darted between two pines blocking her way, receiving many scrapes on her face and arms. Half blinded by tears and slapping branches, she stumbled out from between the trees and suddenly came to a steep cliff. She tried to stop, but her momentum was too great. With a terrified cry she fell forward over the cliff.

She frantically thrashed her arms as she fell to her death. Above, on the ledge, a mournful wolf cried out. The ground was coming up fast to crush her, and Gabby closed her eyes, not wanting to see her death.

Then. Suddenly. Gabriella was weightless.

Strong arms held her firmly. She opened her eyes to find a winged beast staring back at her.

Gabby passed out.

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For a list of my reviews go HERE.

For a list of free eBooks updated daily go HERE

To see all of my giveaways click on the lucky Flamingos below!

I Was Murdered Last Night 

Olivia Brown Mystery Book 1
By A.J. Gallant 

Genre: Paranormal, Mystery, Crime, Thriller

 

Murder mystery meets the paranormal.

Anita’s vacation in New York City ends tragically when she’s killed in Central Park, but instead of the end, it’s only the beginning. Her soul remains at the death scene trying hard to process what happened. And there are other ghosts here that don’t seem to be much help. And, 

of course, the new reality of being a ghost does not sit well with Anita.

What is she supposed to do now?

Why can’t she go into the light? She appears connected to Detective Olivia Brown, the detective assigned to solve her murder. Is she supposed to help her or is something else going on? 

Will the crime go unsolved? Does it even matter now that she’s dead? Or can Detective Olivia Brown get to the bottom of what happened that night in the park? 

 

And can there be romance on the other side?

 

 

A. J. Gallant, owned by a Siamese cat named Moon Diamond (who may or may not be a vampire), compels A. J. to get up every morning at five to take him for a walk so that he can see what’s going on in the neighborhood.

The writing spark was first initiated by reading the works of Harlan Ellison. He’s the creator of more than a dozen screenplays.

He releases 2 to 3 books a year.

 

 

 

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Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew and Good Luck!

For a list of my reviews go HERE.

For a list of free eBooks updated daily go HERE

To see all of my giveaways click on the lucky Flamingos below!

Teaser Tuesday | BooksAndABeat.com

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB at Books And A Beat.

Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
• Grab your current read.
• Open to a random page.
•Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

 

This book is free through the holidays. Click on the links below to grab a copy!

My Teaser for this week is from

Christmas Magic 1959

by Kathryn Meyer Griffith

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My Teaser from 42% of the eBook.

There was still no white stuff drifting down and she so wanted snow. Snow would make the night perfect. She rolled the window halfway down and sucked in a gulp of the fresh December night air. It was tangy with a hint of mustard to it. She liked the icy air.

This was such a beautiful scene. I couldn’t make it any shorter.

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My Review

I’ve read many of Kathryn’s books. She writes horror, thrillers, and suspense, often adding a paranormal or supernatural element to them.

This book is quite different. There’s no horror. No evil beings stalking the characters. It’s a true story of Kathryn’s life as a young girl and a special Christmas.

The title intrigued me. And the cover enchanted me. It looks just like our back yard where I grew up. Christmas was a magical time for me too.

Kathryn leaves nothing out in her telling of life as a young girl. I come from a large family too, and while our circumstances were better that Kathryn’s, I related to so much from her life. Back then there weren’t computer’s and video games. You found your own way to entertain yourself. And, being a large family, you had to give and take in order to get along.

This was a step into the past for me. Memories sprang forth, so vivid and emotional. Many were bittersweet. Some so wonderful I teared up.

This is a beautiful story and one you should add to your Christmas reading list. Perhaps you’ll step into the past and long forgotten memories of a special Christmas will come forth.

5 Stars

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Synopsis

A nostalgic short story about a magical 1959 Christmas Eve from a writer’s childhood by long-time author Kathryn Meyer Griffith.

 

Blurb of Christmas Magic 1959

Have you ever wondered what a writer’s early years were like and how it affected their future writing and the stories they would tell later in their lives? Have you ever wondered what their childhood Christmases, their early holidays, were like? Well, wonder no longer. This story is about one of my most cherished childhood Christmases…in 1959 when I was nine years old. After my beloved musician/singer/songwriter brother Jim passed away in 2015 from cancer I felt an intense need to write this short story about that special Christmas Eve I shared with him, my other siblings, mother, father and grandparents, and put it out there for everyone to read as a tribute to him and my family. This is my story, part of my childhood, and some of my fondest memories. Note: in the late 1970’s I did a series of illustrated (by me, because I’m an artist, too) short stories for my local newspaper and I’ve used one of my old drawings from 1978 for the first page of this short story.

This book is free through the holidays at all sights.

Click on the links below to grab your copy.

Amazon / iTunesB&N / Kobo

Scribd / 24S / inktera

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An Excerpt

Tomorrow will be Christmas and for me it brings back memories of another Christmas nearly six decades ago. In our house, in my childhood world of 1959, Christmas was a magical time. The yearly rituals and preparations began weeks ahead when our home would fill with the aromatic smells of homemade cakes, cookies and baked meats. The Christmas decorations would be brought out and hung everywhere to ignite our Christmas spirit. The usual visit to my Grandmother and Grandfather Fehrt’s house on Christmas Eve, the multi-colored Christmas lights and the gifts, the good will of the season, made it one I have treasured all my life. But there was one very exceptional Christmas which holds a poignant place in my heart above all others because the summer before I had nearly died, or that is what I’ve been told. I’ll tell you about it later in my story. It seemed from then on my life came into crisper focus, I cared more about everything and everyone, because I was just so grateful to be alive. This is the story of that magical 1959 Christmas.

*****

“They say it’s going to snow for Christmas.” Jimmy was standing by Katie’s bedroom window looking out on the frigid day. The skeletal dark trees outside the windows were swaying back and forth in the cold wind as it moaned and whistled around the old house they lived in. It was a sprawling timeworn two-story brick home with many windows and a basement which housed an archaic coal furnace she, her dad or Jimmy, always had to feed and keep clear of clinkers. Clinkers were these melted molten hunks of burned up coal which needed to be pulled from the fire so the rest of the coal could keep burning and making heat to warm their home. There was a scary smelly coal bin in the corner of the basement as well with a trap door where the coal was dropped through. The house, surrounded by rolling fields and thick spooky woods, was big, it was drafty; had bare wooden floors upstairs and down, but it was home and they were happy there. All nine of her family. And many, many decades later it would inspire and be the setting for her first novel, Evil Stalks the Night.

“That’s what they say, snow for Christmas,” she had replied, her nine-year old eyes peeled for the first snowflake. Outside there was only a slate grayness and no flakes yet. She was disappointed because as most children she loved snow and loved it more if it got her a snow day off from school. “Wouldn’t it be great, Jimmy, if it started snowing late tonight–after we get back from grandma’s house, of course–and the world was totally white when we woke up tomorrow morning? It’d really feel like Christmas then.”

“Yeah, that’d be neat. We could go sledding on Cooper’s Hill,” Jimmy said, leaving the windows and flopping down on the end of her bed.

“In the daylight, sure. Maybe. But you won’t get me on that death road after dark.”

“Yeah, yeah, yeah. Katie, you old fraidy-cat.”

But Jimmy didn’t push it. He knew after their last treacherous night sled ride down that icy street there was no way she was going to do it again.

“Are you ready to sing for grandma and grandpa tonight?” he asked, his fingers playing with the chenille tassels on her bedspread. The spread was white with a raised design, as was her sister Carolyn’s bedspread, who she shared a room with. “You won’t forget the words will you?” Jimmy’s olive green eyes flecked with gold, so like her own, met hers. Even back then he was irritatingly serious about his music.

She smiled. “Nah, I have a photographic memory, remember? I won’t forget the words.”

“Show off,” he teased. But he knew she had a good memory. She made excellent grades, loved to read and had an uncanny recall for all of it.

They were going to sing The Little Drummer Boy for their family that night at grandma’s house. A surprise performance and one of the Christmas presents they would give their parents and grandparents. It would be the first time she and Jimmy would officially sing together and, unbeknownst to them, it would initiate many years of their singing together as first a folk duo, in the 1960’s, and in small classic rock bands until they hit their twenties. Then Jim would go one way with his music, his life, and she would go another with her artwork and writing. She wanted to keep singing with him after that but, as they grew older, and he formed other bands (usually with male musicians), he no longer wanted to include her. She never really understood why, only that he didn’t think she was good enough, and at times over the years it would hurt her feelings and wound her heart, but she would accept it. Yet in the beginning, and for many of their early years, they happily sang together and it made her so happy. She loved it. There was something about their voices blending together, their harmonies, as they sang which gave her such pure joy she would never be able to recreate anything like it until she began writing her novels years in the future–and where she would sometimes recreate sibling characters who did sing together. But, not to digress, that’s another story, this is a Christmas tale and back to it.

The family looked forward to Christmas Eve at Grandma Fehrt’s each year because not only did they get presents but the dinner was decadently scrumptious. Baked and glazed ham, turkey, and all the delicious side dishes their grandmother was so good at making; not to mention the exquisite desserts of homemade pies and German breads which would be on the table. Holidays and going to grandma’s house was about the only time they could stuff their bellies until they were full, more than full, of so much delicious food.

Her grandmother had immigrated to America from Austria, sometime around 1910 when she’d been a child, and was a feisty, but loving woman whose entire life was devoted to her husband, George, and their only daughter, Katie’s mother, Delores, and her seven children. Their lives would have been so much worse without the love and generosity of her grandmother Mary Fehrt. Their grandfather George was more reserved, a gruffer sort of man, and though they knew he loved them, in the early years he stoically refused to show it, other than allowing their grandmother to spend money and time on them, until he had a stroke later in life and changed into a nicer version of himself. The two had lived through the Great Depression, and the hard times it had brought, and were devoted to each other. But it was her grandmother who fought to keep helping her family in any way they needed. Left-behind clothes at her and grandpa’s cleaners were often brought to them and grandma was the one who helped provide them with new clothes the beginning of each school year. The girls would get at least two new dresses, or two skirts and blouses; the boys would get two new slacks and shirts, every fall when school started. They would get new coats every winter as they grew out of the old ones. And grandmother was the one they called when they were having trouble with their mother–who sometimes seemed to lose it trying to deal with seven rowdy kids, no money and their dad nowhere around because he was out selling siding, which was his job–and they needed temporary sanctuary. They would either, when they still lived close enough, walk over to grandma’s house or telephone her to come and get them. She swooped in and saved them every time. To this day she is grateful to her grandmother for all the love she showed them until the day Grandma Fehrt died in 2005, surviving their grandfather by over thirty years.

It was 4 p.m. on December 24th, 1959, and the children were getting excited about the coming evening. They’d been anticipating the festivities for weeks and now it was almost here. Their Christmas tree, strung with hand-fashioned construction paper and popcorn chains, and homemade ornaments, was up in the front room, decorated and waiting for the gifts which would appear beneath it before the next morning–or so they hoped. That’s the way it often was with her parents, because of continual lack of money they frequently seemed to be running out and buying gifts at the very last minute on the twenty-third of December or Christmas Eve. They’d say they were grocery shopping or something similar but the children suspected what was really going on, yet never spoke of it. Their parents did the best they could, having so many kids and limited resources, and the children realized that truth. It was kind of funny, the way her parents thought they were getting away with something, being all sneaky, when the children knew what was really going on. Bless their parents’ hearts.***

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How about you? Got a tease? Tell me!

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Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew and Good Luck!

For a list of my reviews go HERE.

For a list of free eBooks updated daily go HERE

To see all of my giveaways click on the Southern Christmas below!

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Title: One of Windsor: The Untold Story of America’s First Witch Hanging
Author:  Beth M. Caruso
Publisher: Ladyslipper Press
Pages: 358
Genre:  Historical Fiction

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My Review

It’s not something we think about in modern times. I can’t imagine being a woman back in the 1600s. There are few prospects beyond marriage. When Alice has no family left in England and no place to go, she takes a position with a wealthy family traveling to North America. They settle in Massachusetts Bay, and Alice hopes to reconnect with some family members there.

As Alice adjusts to her new country, she faces many obstacles. And it’s not the best time to be viewed as different or gifted. The witch scare is on and no one is safe from the persecution of the Puritans.

I fear for Alice, and even though I know how the story has to end, I want her to be safe. To be happy. She’s a gentle woman, loving, bright, and passionate about life.

You can tell the author did extensive research about the peoples and customs of these times. I felt like I’d dipped my toes into the past. The descriptive writing showed me this story. I was on the ship.  I marveled at the new wilderness, and walked the streets. And I read the minds of the people. The paranoid thinking of the Puritans. Their righteous wrath.

It was a scary time. One you may find hard to believe. But the hanging of witches did occur.  And this is Alice’s story. The story of the first witch hanging.

4 Stars

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Synopsis

Alice, a young woman prone to intuitive insights and loyalty to the only family she has ever known, leaves England for the rigid colony of the Massachusetts Bay in 1635 in hopes of reuniting with them again. Finally settling in Windsor, Connecticut, she encounters the rich American wilderness and its inhabitants, her own healing abilities, and the blinding fears of Puritan leaders which collide and set the stage for America’s first witch hanging, her own, on May 26, 1647.

This event and Alice’s ties to her beloved family are catalysts that influence Connecticut’s Governor John Winthrop Jr. to halt witchcraft hangings in much later years. Paradoxically, these same ties and the memory of the incidents that led to her accusation become a secret and destructive force behind Cotton Mather’s written commentary on the Salem witch trials of 1692, provoking further witchcraft hysteria in Massachusetts forty-five years after her death.

The author uses extensive historical research combined with literary inventions, to bring forth a shocking and passionate narrative theory explaining this tragic and important episode in American history.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

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Enjoy the excerpt

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS BAY COLONY, 1692

 

The elderly reverend knew it was crucial to stop Satan. As if in unison with the Dark Lord’s latest antics, tremendous bolts of lightning and deafening thunder heralded the ensuing rainstorm of that early autumn day in Boston. The reverend’s dedicated son would have preferred that he stay home by a fire and rest. Still feisty in his later years of life, he refused. He was fervently determined to discuss pertinent matters at hand concerning the witchcraft calamities in Salem and surrounding towns. As a minister, albeit a retired one, he felt responsible for guiding younger ministers, such as Cotton Mather, to make their congregations understand the menacing threats of witchcraft.

The aged minister was someone who had personally suffered through a demonic incursion in Windsor, a river town of the Connecticut Colony, back in 1647. He was fully cognizant of its evil impacts. Satan had infiltrated Windsor through a consort and witch whom he knew all too well. The Great Demon had been stealthy in his trickery. But this time, the respected pastor hoped to arrest the Devil’s mischief before the same level of destruction and harm could occur. Accordingly, he was there to offer his assistance to Cotton Mather in dealing with witchcraft presently taking hold in Massachusetts Bay towns and villages. The young minister welcomed him into his home.

 “Good day, dear Reverend. You must come in quickly out of the rain and take comfort by the hearth. I will have my servants bring you my finest cider and freshly baked, delicious cakes to eat. I have so much to share with you. By your experience, you have been the inspiration I have needed to start the work that we were speaking of the other week,” spoke Cotton Mather.

“Thank you, Cotton. It will warm my body as well as my heart to sit by the fire and hear of the inspirations that took hold of your soul. I hope it helped you to do the honorable task of warning our people of the great wrath of Satan,” replied the elderly reverend.

With that pronouncement, the old reverend took off his soggy cloak and sat down at a table next to the hearth. He paused and grew distinctly somber before continuing.

“Satan must not be allowed to advance further into our New England wilderness, for we have painstakingly worked at taming it over the years. Yet our young people lapse into disobedience of the commandments of Jesus Christ. Our current admonishment by the Lord through the events in Salem and b yond act to bring us back to the righteous path,” explained the aged pastor as the rain poured down.

He looked wide-eyed and serious at Cotton.

Cotton Mather nodded at the old reverend in agreement and replied, “You see, honored Reverend, by your histories of the very earliest acts of war first waged upon these colonies by Lucifer, I have been able to put the current difficulties in Salem into a broader view of understanding for our present government. I hope it will aid those justices that would weigh their opinions upon such cases of bewitchments. It is also for the benefit of younger generations. I know you prefer not to be mentioned by name, but hear what it is that I have reiterated concerning those times,” he implored.

Cotton quickly pulled out a satchel full of papers written upon with a righteous and eloquent hand and requested, “Please tell me what you think, Reverend. This is from the introduction of my commentary. These words were taken directly from our lengthy conversations of what is transpiring now at Salem and in our congregations in relation to the Devil and his armies’ frustration of

defeat in Connecticut so many years ago. I am naming this commentary Wonders of the Invisible World.”

Wonders of the Invisible World,” nodded the old reverend, speaking loudly over the storm.

A servant came in and poured warm cider for the two ministers. At being interrupted, the elderly pastor pursed his lips, staying silent, but met Cotton’s eyes with a secret understanding. They waited until the servant left before continuing their discussion.

Cotton continued, “This is part of the Introduction, Enchantments Encountered”.

He read, “We have been advised by Credible Christians still alive, that a Malefactor accused of Witchcraft as well as Murder, and executed in this place, more than Forty years ago, did then give Notice of An Horrible PLOT against the country by WITCHCRAFT, and a foundation of Witchcraft then laid, which if it were not seasonably discovered, would probably Blow up and pull down all the Churches in the Country.”

“ Yes. Yes!” agreed the agitated old minister, and added, “ The young people need to know how, if we had not ferreted out the witch that spawned all others on the shores of the Great Connecticut, all of our churches in the colonies would have failed indeed. Nothing would have pleased Satan and his legions more than to see those intent on building a godly and pure Utopian state in this wilderness beaten down and forced by evil to return to England. We, the people of Windsor, agonized much in bringing to light of day the bewitchments brought upon us by a naughty and wayward woman. She who made a pact with the Devil allowed him to nearly destroy us. By the Grace of God he did not, thanks to the watchful vigilance of God’s dedicated and steadfast servants!” he howled with the tempest.

The aged pastor continued, enraged, “No one likes to speak her name. She deserves no recognition for her defamation of this country by unleashing devils that would dare claim this corner of the earth for their own in an affront to the Lord Jesus Christ. By her hand, a

great pestilence of disease infiltrated the daily life of the fledgling colony of Connecticut, especially in the town of Windsor. We had settled into our homes only about twelve years when the Devil was over- come with venomous jealousy that we had claimed formerly heathen territory and tamed wilderness for our Lord Jesus. Satan saw a prime opportunity to permeate and upset our small community through the wickedness and unfaithfulness of that woman,” he spoke as the sky rumbled.

The old reverend took a sip of cider, wetting his dry lips.

“Such was the power that Satan infused her with that a great many people died, including many young children, for the Devil has no conscience and no compassion. Upon her death, she did swear in a fit of lies that she was innocent. She cursed those whose testimonies and swift actions led her to the hangman’s noose. The good Reverend Thomas Hooker was presiding at the First Church in Windsor for the Reverend John Wareham during the time of her bewitchments,” recounted the old cleric.

He clenched his fists as he took a deep breath.

“He helped to expose her and was touched by her wickedness in such a way that he died less than one month later of the same dreaded disease that she helped to proliferate and use to kill other devout soldiers of Christ,” the old reverend said.

Cotton Mather spoke again intensely, “Yes, I understand, Reverend. I pref- ace the first reading I recited just now with this…The New Englanders are a People of God settled in those, which were once the Devil’s Territories; and it may easily be supposed that the Devil was exceedingly disturbed, when he perceived such a People here accomplishing the Promise of old made unto our Blessed Jesus, that He should have the Utmost parts of the Earth for his Possession.

Cotton continued, “I believe that never were more Satanical Devices used for the Unsettling of any People under the Sun, than what have been employed for the Extirpation of the Vine which God has here Planted, Casting out the Heathen, and preparing a Room before it, and causing it to take deep Root, and fill the Land, so that it sent its Boughs unto the Atlantic Sea Eastward, and its Branches unto the Connecticut River westward, and the Hills were covered with the shadow thereof. But in all those attempts of Hell, have hitherto been Abortive and Having obtained Help from God, we continue to this Day. Where fore the Devil is now making one Attempt more difficult, more Surprising, more snarled with unintelligible circumstances than any we have hitherto encountered.

The senior cleric nodded his head approvingly. Their conversation contin-ued for the better part of two hours. The time was interspersed with prayers

as well, imploring the Almighty Father to empower them in their fight against the Prince of Darkness. Cider was refilled several times. They discussed the importance of weeding out all of Satan’s imps and witches in Salem and other nearby villages and towns so that New England could be as pure again as that first generation of godly wayfarers who led the ultimate religious Utopian experiment into the wilderness.

When the conversation eased, the thoughtful and grave old minister stared into the fire. He wondered if she were burning in hellfires in that very moment. And what of the souls of the family who had forever fractured in their defense or blame of her, the first colonial witch? He was becoming quite old now. Soon, he hoped to be called to God’s kingdom. Until that time, he would continue to be of service to the younger generations of ministers trying to guide their lost flocks away from Satan.

Abruptly, there was a knock on the door that jerked the ministers from their pious imaginings. It was the elderly reverend’s son. He had come to retrieve his father. He paid his respects to the Reverend Cotton Mather and then gently guided his father out into the streets of Boston, newly drenched from the rain. The elderly pastor turned around and shouted to Reverend Mather.

“Please feel free to call for my assistance again. For an old man such as I delights in nothing more than making his last acts upon this earth ones that are dedicated to bringing God’s people closer to Him and away from the wretches of the Devil. I shall be honored to continue to help you with your mission,” offered the old cleric.

“Thank you, honorable Reverend,” answered Cotton with a slight bow.

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Author Beth M. Caruso

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Beth M. Caruso grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio and spent her childhood writing puppet shows and witches’ cookbooks. She became interested in French Literature and Hispanic Studies, receiving a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Cincinnati. She later obtained Masters degrees in Nursing and Public Health.

Working as a Peace Corps volunteer in Thailand, she helped to improve the public health of local Karen hill tribes. She also had the privilege to care for hundreds of babies and their mothers as a labor and delivery nurse.

Largely influenced by an apprenticeship with herbalist and wildcrafter, Will Endres, in North Carolina, she surrounds herself with plants through gardening and native species conservation.

Her latest passion is to discover and convey important stories of women in American history. One of Windsor is her debut novel. She lives in New England with her awesome husband, amazing children, loyal puppy, and cuddly cats.

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK

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  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive both books
  • This giveaway ends midnight November 30.
  • Winner will be contacted via email on December 1.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.

Good luck everyone!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew and Good Luck!

For a list of my reviews go HERE.

For a list of free eBooks updated daily go HERE

To see all of my giveaways click on the lucky horseshoe below!

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Shadow of the Drill

By Rhani D’Chae

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Genre: Thriller, Suspense

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A Gritty and Violent Thriller.

A brutal experience transforms an unproven young tough into a ruthless killing machine.

For fifteen years he waited, building his body into an unstoppable weapon so that vengeance would be had through the strength of his will and the power of his hands.

On the bloodstained streets of a northwestern city, the enforcer known as the Drill stalks his prey. Judge, Jury, and Executioner; he seeks out those who target the weak, condemning them to the kind of justice that has made him a legend.

 

Goodreads * Amazon

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Rhani D’Chae is a visually disabled writer who was born and raised in Tacoma, WA. Because of her failing eyesight, she no longer reads as much as she used to, but she does enjoy falling into the worlds created by other Indie authors as often as hre vision will allow. Shadow of the Drill is her first published novel, and is the first in a series that revolves around an unrepentant enforcer and the violent life that he leads.

She enjoys chatting with readers and fellow writers via Social Media sites, and loves getting comments and other input from those who have read her work. She is on Facebook, and also on Twitter, @rhanidchae. Also, if you have the time, please stop by her blog: rhanidchae.wordpress.com.

Ms D’Chae is currently working on Winter of the Drill.

 

Goodreads * Amazon * Website * Facebook * Twitter

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Two $5 Amazon Gift Cards and Two eBook Copies

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew and Good Luck!

For a list of my reviews go HERE.

For a list of free eBooks updated daily go HERE

To see all of my giveaways click on the lucky Flamingos below!

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This is my own version of a weekly book haul and all things new on fuonlyknew.

Another fun way to share your book news and enjoy others is The Sunday Post hosted by

Sunday Post

Kimberly the Caffeinated Book Reviewer

Head on over and leave a link to your Sunday Post and hop around to visits others.

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Some chit chat.

What a fun week. I was off of work for my vacation and a few of us headed over to Biloxi and New Orleans to do a bit of gaming, eat some awesome food, and take in the sights.

We were a bit early to take in Christmas lights as they were working on that while we were there. This is a huge Gingerbread House. The windows have moving colors in them. Sorry about the thumb in the corner of the pic. LOL

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And we went on a steamboat ride up the river. Beautiful day and lots to see.

Here’s a long view of the steamboat Natchez.

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Had to get a picture of the paddle wheel too!

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And, did anybody venture out for the Black Friday deals? I didn’t. I always picture the scene from Jingle All The Way and shudder. LOL

If you did head out for the sales, I hope you didn’t get Trampled All The Way!

I’ll be hopping over to check out your Sunday Posts so be sure to leave me your link.

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New books on my shelf. Some I won, some are for review, and some I just had to have.

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Make sure you stop by to enter Michael Hebler’s awesome giveaway!

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I loved The Ghost Of Christmas Past. Check out my review and enter to win a $25 Amazon Gift Card and a print copy of the coloring book, A Christmas Carol.

Enter the giveaway HERE.

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And here are some freebies for ya!

Click on the covers to get yours and remember to make sure they’re still free before you click that buy button.

Fairytale of New York by [Murphy, Abby]  The Assistant's Christmas Wish (The Christmas Wish Series Book 1) by [Ostrow, Lexi]  A Royal Christmas Rescue (The Royal Heirs Book 2) by [Scott, D. D.]

The Devil's Crescent by [Keller, Ann B.]  White Horse, Dark Dragon by [Fleet, Robert C.]  Vestiges Of Alchemy (The Core Chronicles Book 1) by [Kumar,Ritesh]

The Arx by [Storey, Jay Allan]  A Bleu Streak Christmas (The Bleu Series Book 2) by [Lowe, T.I.]  Stillwell: A Haunting on Long Island by [Cash, Michael Phillip]

  Trapped - A Novel of Terror (The Konrath/Kilborn Collective) by [Konrath, J.A., Jack Kilborn]  Baby Please Don't Go: A Novel by [Freudberg, Frank]  A Long Time Dead: A gripping CSI crime thriller (SOCO Roger Conniston Book 1) by [Barrett, Andrew]

Irish Romance- The Kerry Romance Box Set by [O'Leary, Susanne]

Boxed Set - The Coach House and Daughters by [Osmund, Florence]

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Books I reviewed this week. Click on the covers to read my reviews.

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Books up for review next week.

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Other posts on my blog this week.

There’s A Bumbie Under My Bed ~ A delightful childrens’ book review

Teaser Tuesday #181 ~ Nine Of Stars

For Duty And Honor ~ Blast and Giveaway

Always Room For Cupcakes ~ Sale Blitz

Ghost Hampton ~ A Paranormal Thriller Review

The Ghost Of Christmas Past ~ Special Sale and Giveaway

Evertaster: The Delicious City ~ Excerpt and Giveaway

A Life For A Life ~ A Mystery Review and Giveaway

The Friday 56 #128 ~ The Nature Of Balance

The Charming Life Of Izzy Malone ~ Blitz and Giveaway

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For a list of my reviews go HERE

For a list of free eBooks go HERE

To see all of my giveaways click on the lucky horseshoe below!

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So, what did you get to read this week?

Got any recommendations?

I’d love to know and thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew.