Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Love Amplified Release Day Blitz - Excerpt & Giveaway

Love Amplified (Heavy Influence, #3)
By: Ann Marie Frohoff
Publisher AMF Publishing
Release Date: October 25, 2016
Pages: 176

Jake Masters is on the rise, sober and inspired. His solo music career has taken off and he's packed away his ugly skeletons - so he thought.

When a tropical rendezvous with Alyssa turns into an unexpected life-altering reunion, they must decide what's more important - their happily ever after or doing the right thing.  

Can it be both?
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There are things you can’t un-see…things that remain like thick burn scars,
always there to remind you of a fire you couldn’t run away from. Living in the same town as my rock star ex-boyfriend was one of them. Jake Masters, the love of my life and the torment of my existence had moved back from New York City, unexpectedly, and I had spotted him in the most unbelievable way.

Standing in the middle of the Manhattan Beach Pier the ocean waves crashed
against the pier piling, matching the pounding of my heart. My emotions churned like the blue water bubbling beneath me. I felt the heat of emotion rising up my neck. I kept blinking, not believing what I was seeing. I looked back at Nathan, who’d always been there for me during my darkest of days with Jake in high school. My friend Nathan, who became my boyfriend, back to friend, then turned fiancé. He was talking on his cell phone. He’d answered a call from his hospital intern program, stalling our all too serious marriage conversation.

Waiting for him to get off the phone I had leaned against the pier’s railing,
looking out over the sand. It was a warm spring Monday afternoon and there were more people on the beach than usual, too many kids ran around at the shoreline and I thought it must have been a school holiday.

That’s when I saw him – Jake. My hands trembled instantly and my legs grew
wobbly. I took in a deep breath to get a hold of myself. His shirtless back faced me. There was no mistaking him. The tattoo dedicated to me, angled over his left bicep and down his shoulder blade, taunted me. It was as if it were alive, its strands of hair waving back and forth as he dug in the sand next to a little boy and a woman with long black hair. I could see them clearly as I stood above them on the pier. They were building a sand castle. I turned away unable to believe it. I leaned my back against the railing, watching Nathan as he slowly walked toward me.

My handsome Nathan…maybe not mine anymore. I didn’t deserve him. I never
did. This was a sign. My heart would always belong to Jake. No man deserves a woman who would always pine for someone else.

What was I seeing?

I didn’t want to turn back to get another glimpse, but I had no control. I casually
glanced over my shoulder. Now I could hear their laughter as if they were the only ones on the beach and it shredded me to my core. Nathan finally made it to my side and I watched him as he rubbed his jaw, despondent. He’d flown in that morning, just to see me and to give me an ultimatum.

“Alyssa if we’re not gonna set a date this has to end…” - that’s what he’d said
right before his phone rang. I still couldn’t believe he took the call, maybe because he wanted me to suffer. I’d dragged our engagement out long enough. I looked back over my shoulder again. Seeing Jake play happy family made my stomach turn.

Who were they? That’s probably his new girlfriend – I thought, wondering whom
the kid was. Would Jake date someone with a kid? – Obviously. I felt the life rush out of me like the air in a punctured balloon as memories flooded through my mind, lingering on the things that caused our complete and final breakup. What the hell did I expect? Of course he’d move on with his life. I ended it so harshly and heartlessly, but he deserved my cold shoulder. He’d been sleeping with his deceased best friend’s wife, more than once. He was on drugs and not the person I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. I remembered the pain and hurt in Jake’s eyes when I threw the ring he’d given me, our promise of forever, in his face as if it happened yesterday.

I never looked back.

Nathan tucked his phone back in his pocket and I launched off of the railing,
grabbing him by the arm leading him away. I didn’t want him to see what and whom I was staring at. His face was still serious and his green eyes more somber. I knew the end was near, but not in the way I’d expected.

“Everything ok, with work?” I linked my arm through his. He sighed and pulled away from me. “Aly, what’s it gonna be?” I stopped to face him. “You want an answer now?” “Alyssa, you’re graduating. I…” He hung his head and my heartbeat was in my ears. “I met someone, Alyssa, and I’m interested in taking her out. If you’re not going to marry me…we both need to move on with our lives.”

The ringing in my ears made me dizzy. I watched Nathan’s face as he eagerly
looked at me for a response and all I kept hearing in my mind was – “…I met
someone…” “Nathan,” I crossed my arms, trying to figure out how I was feeling. I was both hurt and not surprised. “What you’re saying doesn’t make sense…” “Yes, it does…it came out wrong, Alyssa, I love you.” He was flustered and it made me feel worse about everything. “It’s about you not wanting to commit to a life with me...” he gulped, searching my eyes, “and I met someone in my program. I spend a
lot of time with her. She enjoys my company…and she made a comment that if I wasn’t engaged, she’d ask me out. It was a simple, flirtatious comment, yes, but it got me to thinking…since you won’t commit to a wedding date.”

Sadness and guilt gutted me. 

“Nathan you knew…” “I know.” He interrupted, frustrated. “I’ve grown tired of hoping you’ll come around, Alyssa. I’m ready to start my life with someone. I know we’re young but I wanna build a life with someone from nothing and I wanted that to be you.”

Alyssa. He never calls me Alyssa.

“You don’t even wear the ring I gave you.” He continued. “I should have known
when you stopped wearing it.” His arms flew up in indignation. “I want you to be happy. I want to be happy. I thought I could be something better in your life. I thought I could show you the love you deserve, show you how a man is supposed to treat a woman.” “Nathan, if this is about Jake…”

“That’s part of it.” He said loudly, drawing a bit of attention to us. “I wouldn’t marry him either.” I practically shouted, blurting out more than I wanted, “he asked me several times, too.” I felt heavy like I could collapse from emotional weight.
He looked confused. I’d never shared this information with him.

“Really.” He laughed to himself, almost mockingly. He turned away and his arms
flew out again as he paced back to me sarcastically saying, “I suppose that makes me feel slightly better.”

This was a side of Nathan I’d not seen before and I ignored his biting contention,


 “I’m just fucked up, what can I say.”


Ann Marie ("Annie") Frohoff grew up in sunny Southern California. As a teen and young adult, she spent her time frequenting and living in nearly every beachside city up and down the coast.

Ann Marie is a debut author whose vision to tell a story started out like many other aspiring writers, with a dream, literally. After taking her then eight-year-old daughter to a concert, her dream weaving took on a life of its own. Long story short, she quit her high- paying corporate job and went for broke to follow her dream.

The first installment in her Heavy Influence Trilogy, FIRST KISS, released June 11, 2013 — the series is a story about young, reckless love between a rising rock star and his younger muse, spanning 10 years of their tumultuous and passionate relationship. 
Each book in the Trilogy will come with a soundtrack of original music, of which the lyrics will appear in the pages of the books.

Annie has settled in the South Bay area of Los Angeles with her family.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Mailing List | YouTube | Goodreads

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Monday, 17 October 2016

Morganville 10th Anniversary Celebration

I've always been a sucker (no pun intended) for vampires; in books, movies etc. I still remember picking up Glass Houses at the local bookstore, the book had been out for a year, but they had it featured on a shelf in the teen section. At the time, I was deep in the vampire obsession hole and needed another book to suck (hah! again, no pun intended) me in. Now here we are, a decade later and these books still have made an impact on the book universe. I still prefer holding a book instead of a remote control any day. Guess it's safe to say that I'm a book nerd. So cheers everyone and happy 10th birthday Glass Houses!

College freshman Claire Danvers has had enough of her nightmarish dorm situation. When Claire heads off-campus, the imposing old house where she finds a room may not be much better. Her new roommates don't show many signs of life, but they'll have Claire's back when the town's deepest secrets come crawling out, hungry for fresh blood. Will she be able to face the town's terror or will she drown like everyone else?

About the Author

Rachel Caine's rich, diverse bibliography of more than 45 books in print covers many categories and genres. She started out writing horror and fantasy as Roxanne Longstreet (Stormriders, The Undead, Red Angel, Cold Kiss, Slow Burn) before switching to the name Roxanne Conrad and publishing romantic suspense and mystery (Copper Moon, Bridge of Shadows, Exile). By 2003, she began to publish under her current pseudonym, specializing in urban fantasy, science fiction, and paranormal young adult fiction.

She has been writing original fiction since the age of fourteen, and professionally published since 1991. She graduated from Socorro High School in El Paso Texas (where she was a UIL all-state champion in music and journalism) and went on to earn an accounting degree from Texas Tech University. She played professionally as a musician for several years once out of college, but ultimately gave up the music for writing.

She's had a varied "day job" career, including web design, graphic arts, accounting, payroll management, insurance investigation, and (most recently) corporate communications and crisis management. (It all counts as research.)

Rachel loves reading, writing, and mild amounts of arithmetic when required ... but she has a special place in her heart for history, music, and science, and you'll find those themes in many of her works.
Enter for your chance to win a personal Halloween card from Rachel Caine,
TPU sampler booklet
Photo still from Morganville: The Series,
Fall of Night lenticular bookmark! 
4 runners-up will also receive a personal Halloween card from Rachel Caine! Giveaway ends on 10/24/16

Scavenger Hunt: There are 10 blogs participating in the Morganville Vampires 10th Anniversary Bash and each blog has a bold, red, hidden buzz word in the body of the post that entrants must find and submit via the Rafflecopter below. Find all 10 buzz words, enter them in the Scavenger Hunt Rafflecopter on any of our 10 participating blogs, and be entered to win 1 of 3 prizes!
1 Grand Prize winner
Morganville Vampires tote bag
Limited edition UK Daylighters,
Signed paperback copy of Midnight Bites,
TPU sampler booklet,
Fall of Night lenticular bookmark,
Photo still from Morganville: The Series,
Welcome to Morganville postcard,
Ghost Town lenticular bookmark,
Morganville Resident Survival Kit.

2 Runners-up
Morganville Vampires tote bag,
Signed paperback copy of Midnight Bites,
TPU sampler booklet ,
Fall of Night lenticular,
Photo still from Morganville: The Series,
Welcome to Morganville postcard,
Ghost Town lenticular,
Morganville: The Series poster.
Giveaway ends 11/7/16

Thursday, 13 October 2016

Speed of Life Blog Tour - Interview

Author: J.M. Kelly
Pub. Date: October 11, 2016
Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers
Pages: 352
Formats: Hardcover, eBook

Twins Crystal and Amber have the same goal: to be the first in their family to graduate high school and make something of their lives. When one gets pregnant during their junior year, they promise to raise the baby together. It’s not easy, but between their after-school jobs, they’re scraping by.

Crystal’s grades catch the attention of the new guidance counselor, who tells her about a college that offers a degree in automotive restoration, perfect for the car buff she is. When she secretly applies—and gets in—new opportunities threaten their once-certain plans, and Crystal must make a choice: follow her dreams or stay behind and honor the promise she made to her sister.

First off, I want to thank J.M. for coming to my blog for this fine occasion.

Oh, please, call me Joëlle! Thanks for having me.

1.      I’ve always been intrigued by books that feature twins. There’s a special bond that twins have compared to siblings of any other nature. What was it like writing twins?

I always wanted to be a twin, but it didn't work out that way so I planned to have twins of my own (turns out they're fictional). We have about ten sets of twins in my extended family on my mother's side and my great aunts were triplets! They were so little when they were born, they were each kept in a shoebox. This was nearly ninety years ago and I don't think anyone thought they'd live, but two of them are still alive. I feel like in Speed of Life, the promises Crystal and Amber make to each other are strengthened by them being twins instead of just sisters. It added that extra bit of loyalty that the story needed to really have a backbone. It was great fun to imagine how they were alike (besides looks) and how they were each their own person. I had a friend in high school who was a twin and he said to me once, "It's like we're two individuals, but we're the same person, too." That always stuck with me and I think I even have it somewhere in the book.

2.      Some people turn to contemporary books for a smack in the face or just a calm relax read. When you read a contemporary book, what do you look for?

I'm a big fan of contemporary books, but not so much the really dark ones. I look for the same thing I look for in every book I read, regardless of genre. I want a really good story. And I love family and school stories, and especially books that are what so many people call quiet, but I prefer to think of as powerful. One of my favorites is Aimee Friedman's THE YEAR MY SISTER GOT LUCKY. And of course, Jandy Nelson is my writing hero. But I grew up on Judy Blume and Norma Klein too and they always told smaller stories, but with huge impacts.

3.      I always ask authors about how music has either impacted their book or if a song could describe someone in the story. So, if you could pick a song to describe one of the twins, or both, what would it be?

It's funny, but almost everything else I've written is full of music. I'm married to the singer/songwriter Victor Anthony, and there's live music in my house nearly every day. But in Speed of Life, I intentionally left music out for the most part. I wanted to get away from writing what I know! One thing that I did include was a bit about the Golden Oldies—songs from the 1950s and 1960s—because those are the songs they always blast over the loudspeaker at car shows. Those songs remind me of Crystal the most. If I had to pick one, I'd say Rock Around the Clock performed by Bill Haley and the Comets – Natalie keeps them up all around the clock!

4.      How much of this story was inspired by either personal experiences or knowing people who had experienced what happens in the story?

Not much! Often I pick bits and pieces from stories I've overheard, read about, or even know firsthand and then twist them until they're unrecognizable and become my own, but with this book it was really important to me to write a novel that wasn't so personal. I think if you stick to writing what you know, you end up writing the same book over and over again and I wanted to challenge myself with this one. I did come from a family of old-car lovers and I myself have an affinity for the gloss and chrome of cars from the fifties, but the idea of twins raising a baby was completely made up. And I don't even have kids, so I had to do a lot of research! I think what I'm most proud of about this book is that it's not based on personal experiences or people I know who went through similar things.

Thanks for having me! These were great questions.

J. M. Kelly (aka Joëlle Anthony) 

About the Author
Joëlle Anthony is a writer and sometimes-actress who currently lives on a tiny island in British Columbia with her musician husband, Victor Anthony, and cat, Marley. Her debut novel, Restoring Harmony, was long listed for the American Library Association’s Best New Young Adult Fiction 2010, and chosen as the Feature Title for Cincinnati’s Teen on the Same Page Festival 2012. Her latest release, The Right & the Real also made ALA’s Best YA Fiction list (2012), both from Putnam.  She enjoys teaches writing workshops to writers of all ages. Visit her on the web at www.joelleanthony.com Follow her on Twitter @joellewrites

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