Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Interview with Chad Alan Gibbs, TWO LIKE ME AND YOU

Can you give us a brief overview of your latest book? Is it part of a series?
Two Like Me and You is the story of two high schoolers, a lovesick boy and a mysterious girl, who take a World War II veteran back to France in search of his long-lost love. There is also a famous ex-girlfriend involved, and a fair amount of ‘90s hip hop references. It is a stand-alone novel.

Do you have a favorite character?
The WWII veteran, Garland Lenox, was by far the most fun to write because he’s old and ornery and doesn’t really have a filter. I think Parker Haddaway is my favorite character though. I’m sure some readers will see her as manic pixie dream girl, but I think Parker’s wants and desires actually propel all the action in the book, and her past eventually explains all of her eccentricities.

Did you try the traditional route to publishing, i.e. querying agents/publishers?
I did. This is my first novel, but I’ve had two non-fiction books traditionally published by Zondervan/HarperCollins. My former agent pitched the book to several editors without success. I tried querying new agents later, but most were understandably turned off by the fact that the book had already been shopped around. After Two Like Me and You received a Kirkus Star a friend in the industry wanted to send the book to a couple of agents, but by then I was just ready to get the book out there and let people read it. I am querying agents with my second novel now.

If you used a graphic designer/publisher’s designer, how involved were you during the creative process for your cover? designed my cover. They sent me an early version with two different faces, and I loved the idea, but not the faces, so I asked if it was okay if I searched around on Shutterstock for a couple of better faces. That was a bizarre process. You can search by model on these stock photo sites, so when I found faces I liked I was scanning hundreds of photos of the same girl and guy. There they are playing tennis. There they are on their wedding day. There they are in doctor’s scrubs. I finally found photos of them both looking up, and we used them on the cover.

What is your writing process? Do you listen to music or do you like silence?
go to the same coffee shop in Auburn, World Cup Coffee, five days a week for about three hours. When our youngest is in kindergarten next year I’ll have a lot more time, but for now I’ve just got the three-hour window when he’s in the Children’s Day Out program at a local church. It’s a quiet coffee shop, and I listen to music the entire time. Usually, I play the ‘my favorite’ mix on Apple music, though sometimes I’ll listen to an album or a song that means something to the scene I’m working on. I’ve accidentally listened to the same song more than 20 times in a row on a few occasions when the writing was going well.

Do you outline your story or just go where your muse takes you?
I outline scenes, but make room for the story to go in unexpected directions. I need some idea of where I’m going on the first draft, or I’d probably stare at the blank screen for three hours and then burst into tears.

Did you hire an editor to review your manuscript before publishing?
I did. My friend Becky Philpott, who worked on my books at Zondervan, did the macro and micro edit for Two Like Me and You, and she was invaluable.

Do you find it difficult to juggle your time between marketing your current book and writing your next book?
Yes! There is so much to learn, and since deciding back in February that I’d indie publish Two Like Me and You, my latest novel has been mostly on the backburner while I read about marketing and learn how to format a book and all the other things an indie author has to do. Hopefully, if I indie publish my next novel, my learning curve won’t be as steep.

Besides writing, do you have any other passions?
Before our kids were born I played a lot of golf. My wife and I are both Auburn grads, and we live in Auburn, so we go to a lot of football and basketball games. I’m a big Star Wars fan and collect old action figures. I usually buy myself a new one whenever Auburn loses to cheer myself up. My wife and I both love to travel. I’ve been to six continents (you’re next Antarctica) and about thirty countries. We went to France while I was working on Two Like Me and You and retraced the route the characters take in the book. We’re going back to Europe this summer, Paris and Barcelona, and I can’t wait!

What’s next for you?
I’ve finished a second novel called The Rome of Fall. It’s a high school football story loosely based on Julius Caesar and half set in the early ‘90’s and half set modern day. My third novel, which I’m only about 15,000 words into, is a Gatsby retelling set on the Florida Gulf Coast during the financial crisis and housing market crash in 2008.

Two Like Me and You
Chad Alan Gibbs
Publication date: May 20th 2019
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult

Edwin Green’s ex-girlfriend is famous. We’re talking cover-of-every-tabloid-in-the-grocery-store-line famous. She dumped Edwin one year ago on what he refers to as Black Saturday, and in hopes of winning her back, he’s spent the last twelve months trying to become famous himself. It hasn’t gone well.
But when a history class assignment pairs Edwin with Parker Haddaway, the mysterious new girl at school, she introduces him to Garland Lenox, a nursing-home-bound World War II veteran who will change Edwin’s life forever.
The three escape to France, in search of the old man’s long-lost love, and as word of their adventure spreads, they become media darlings. But when things fall apart, they also become the focus of French authorities. In a race against time, who will find love, and who will only find more heartache?

Author Bio:
Chad Alan Gibbs lives in Alabama with his wife, two sons, two dogs, and an embarrassingly large collection of Star Wars action figures. Two Like Me and You is his first novel.

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#Excerpt: TIL DEATH DO US PART by K.S. David

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. K.S. David will award a $20 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn commenter. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Quinn McGuire is settling into her new life just fine. She's moving beyond the trauma of her past. She's fallen in love with her best friend, Jack Lassiter, and slowly rebuilding the career she'd once abandoned. Then her old nemesis is arrested for murdering her husband. To the surprise of everyone, Glenda Penderherst wants Quinn to represent her as legal counsel. Quinn doesn't do criminal defense anymore. Nope, she's focusing on areas a little more refined - less drama.

Naomi Banker, the resident vibrational therapist, asks Quinn to look into an intellectual property rights claim. The request seems innocent enough - but boring. Things soon spice up when Quinn discovers that Naomi was romantically linked to Glenda's murdered husband. Soon, more bodies start to surface and like it or not, Quinn finds herself caught in a whirlwind of broken hearts and private alliances, all while trying to manage a few special secrets of her own. She’s convinced of Naomi's innocence and starts to dig for answers. But if she's not careful, she'll end up being added to the body count.


The day before, I’d told Jack about my disappointment in meeting Naomi. I wanted no part of her case. He didn’t push me to explain. I sensed that he wasn’t surprised.

“She said something about hearing noises and seeing strange lights behind her home.”

Jack straightened. “What kind of noises? What kind of lights?”

“She doesn’t describe it well. She just says that she sees eerie lights come from the trees behind her house and sometimes she hears voices. So, I thought if I went back there I could find a practical explanation. There’s a footpath just beyond the edge of her property. You won’t believe what I found. And, you won’t believe whose house sits on the opposite end of those woods.”

Jack’s brow narrowed. He’d reached in his pocket and withdrew a red and white peppermint, popped it into his mouth and stared off into the distance, thoughtful. He’d grown up in the Hills and knew every street.

“I’ll be damned,” he huffed. “It has to be the Penderherst home.” I nodded when he looked at me for confirmation.

“Exactly. There’s more, Jack. You have to see the place for yourself.” I could tell him about the tents. I could tell him about the heaps of trash and the footsteps that danced way too close to Naomi’s house but there was no substitute for a first-hand experience.

Instead of driving straight to Naomi’s house, Jack parked in front of the Penderherst home. Yellow and black police tape still covered the drive and stretched over the doorway. Jack and I followed the stone path around the house. The Penderhersts’ lawn needed to be cut. The edges were overgrown, and the grass could use a good dosing of fertilizer. Brown spots were peaking up through the weeds. Jack and I walked up on the patio. The wooden slats were warped. A few looked gnawed away by wear and age. After a moment, we descended the steps and headed into the woods. We’d barely walked a hundred yards when Jack turned and looked back at the house.

“They sure didn’t overspend on curtains,” he noted as we peered through the crossed arms of branches. “Someone standing here can see straight through the entire house at nightfall,” he said.

I tugged at Jack’s hand. “Come on, you have to see the rest.”

There was no way I ever would have gone back alone. My skin started to prickle just thinking about the sense of foreboding that had washed over me earlier.

We had started moving deeper into the woods again when Jack asked, “Did you seriously come back here alone?” The foliage was growing dense and the unruly branches darkened the space around us.

“Yes.” I sighed, knowing the complaint that was going to follow once Jack saw what waited inside the clearing.

A low growl escaped him.

About the Author: 

K. S. David lives in the Mid-Atlantic with her husband, their three children and a menagerie of pets. New storylines are constantly running through her head. She keeps notebooks tucked in pockets of the car, the nightstand and makes voice recordings just about all day long. She's addicted to true life mysteries and crime shows, both of which marry well with a great romance. Some of her favorite things are long walks, reading in bed, baking and of course, writing her next novel.

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Tuesday, May 28, 2019

#Review: THE EARL NEXT DOOR by Amelia Grey

  4 of 5 stars

I really enjoy Ms. Grey's stories and this one is another enjoyable read. Adeline, Dowager Countess of Wake, finally free from her controlling and cruel husband, has vowed to never marry again and let another man control her. Her resolve starts to crumble when she meets her handsome and imposing neighbor, Lyon Marksworth, the Earl of Lyonwood. From their first meeting, sparks fly, but Adeline is determined to ignore and spend all her time and energy on her school for girls whose fathers' or brothers' died in a sea tragedy. Can Adeline control her desire for her sexy neighbor?

I loved Adeline. She was an unusual heroine--feisty, bold and passionate--not the usual sweet young miss just out on the marriage mart. I also adored Lyon. He was the perfect gentleman--kind, considerate although his ordered life is soon upset by the widow next door along with the young girls of the school. Their interactions are explosive from the moment they meet and it will take a compromise from each of them to finally have their happily ever after. The book is a quick read although I did figure out the twist in the story early on. While I loved the twist, the reader needs to suspense belief a bit and just enjoy it. Fans of regency romances will enjoy this story.

I voluntarily read this story and the opinions are my own.

#Excerpt: ASTRAEUS by Haley Cavanagh

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions to celebrate the release of the audio version of ASTRAEUS. Haley Cavanagh will be awarding a $10 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

One pre-apocalyptic Earth. One desperate space mission to find a solution. One unexpected alien.

When Dr. Sakota Thorell signed onto the mission to scout out a new, habitable planet, she knew discovering extraterrestrial life was always a possibility. But she never expected to find an alien adrift in space, nor for that alien to be so intriguing. Sakota feels an instant and undeniable attraction to Astraeus, but he represents a million possibilities, and just as many threats.

There are others hunting Astraeus, and his rescue may cost Earth its last hope.

Barnes and Noble:
Google Play:

The audio book for Astraeus is live!


She moved to pull away, but the man’s fingers closed over her wrist.

“Let me go.” She jerked her arm, but he wouldn’t release his grip. She gave him a cautionary look, and he loosened his fingers, though he still held her. Warning bells went off. What if he’s not here in peace? But his eyes sparkled impishly. He seemed to enjoy her skin pressed against his. Maybe he hadn’t been touched in a while. Or maybe he had a crush. Who knew.

Before she could extricate herself, the intercom chimed. “Sakota, are you okay?”

“Yeah, I’m fine. He’s just being friendly—”

The man’s forefinger trailed along her arm again. She sucked in a breath and shut her eyes as a series of images flashed through her mind. A high wall made of stacked stones. A hand spread out to touch the tips of tall, golden wheat of a field. Multihued buildings in the distance under a purple sky. Children’s laughter and then screams. She jerked when the images changed. Strange rain, like metal. Black ships attacking from the sky, horrible screams which rent the air, death. A gentle brush against her hand again. She inhaled and opened her eyes. The man searched her, calm and patient. She struggled to see straight, but her mind spun.

“W-was that your—”

The isolation walls shot up. Rutledge burst into the room and advanced like an angry bear, brutish, immaculate, and combat ready in his black Oceanstone fatigues. “Let her go,” he snarled.

Rutledge yanked the man’s hand off her and pushed her aside. She fell to the floor on her back in a dizzy haze, reeling from the vision. She turned her head. The man bellowed and tore loose from his restraints. His and Rutledge’s images faded into one as they collided and fought. Rutledge’s weapon whirred as he strained to activate it. The rifle propelled over her head and hit the wall.

“Stop.” Her pleas fell on deaf ears. She closed her eyes.

The men barged into the room with heavy footfalls and angry shouts. She opened her eyes, but her vision swirled. The blurred image of the alien lifted Rutledge’s lieutenant like a kitchen chair and catapulted him in the same direction as the weapon. “Stop,” she hollered to the men. “Don’t shoot him. He wasn’t attacking me.”

Another soldier fell to the floor with a sick thud, holding his stomach. “Yeah? Well, he’s attacking me.”

The alien pounced over her, crouching low. He caged her with his body and made a guttural rumble in his throat, a warning to the men. She turned her head to the marines, who zeroed their weapons in on them.

About the Author:

Haley Cavanagh is a military veteran, wife, and mother. She is an alumna of Columbia College, a musical theater nut, and she loves to dive into any book that crosses her path. Haley resides with her family in the United States and enjoys spending time with her husband and children when she’s not writing. She loves to hear from her readers, and encourages you to contact her via her website and social media.


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Monday, May 27, 2019

THANK A SOLDIER on 2019 Memorial Day and every day

We all get caught up in the fun activities of Memorial Day--getting together with friends, BBQs, having a great time, but let's not forget the real meaning of Memorial Day. Soldiers risk their lives every day for our freedom, a freedom that we take for granted. Nothing in life is free and I for one am thankful that we have such brave men and women who are willing to put their lives on the line to protect our freedom.  

Dear Solider: Thank you for your Service. Thank you for your Sacrifice. Thank you for your Courage. I Salute YOU. This day honors all of you. 

Memorial Day is observed on the last Monday of May. It was formally known as Decoration Day and commemorates all men and women, who have died in military service for the United States. Many people visit cemeteries and memorials on Memorial Day and it is traditionally seen as the start of the summer season.

Memorial Day started as an event to honor Union soldiers, who had died during the American Civil War. It was inspired by the way people in the Southern states honored their dead. After World War I, it was extended to include all men and women, who died in any war or military action.

The current name for this day did not come into use until after World War II. Decoration Day and then Memorial Day used to be held on May 30, regardless of the day of the week, on which it fell. In 1968, the Uniform Holidays Bill was passed as part of a move to use federal holidays to create three-day weekends. This meant that that, from 1971, Memorial Day holiday has been officially observed on the last Monday in May. However, it took a longer period for all American states to recognize the new date.

Whatever you decide to do on this holiday weekend, say a prayer and a "thank you" for all of the US military personnel who are serving around the world to keep us all safe.

#Excerpt: THE LADY RAVEN by Rebecca Henry

The Lady Raven: A Dark Cinderella Tale
Rebecca Henry
Publication date: December 5th 2017
Genres: Adult, Fantasy

In The Lady Raven, Rebecca Henry tells the tale of Zezolla, a little princess abandoned by her father into the hands of her evil stepmother and wicked stepsisters.
A familiar fairy tale you may think but all is not as it appears. The reader is soon drawn into a web of witchcraft, lies and deceit, and gradually realises that this is no typical fairy tale but a dark and macabre take on one.
Zezolla is treated with the utmost cruelty, neglected and vilified, and left to live in the damp cellars of the castle. The only friends Zezolla has are her beloved raven and her pet wolf. Her only comfort lies in the loyalty of the creatures of the forest and her mother’s hazel tree. Will Zezolla have the power to escape her torment and ultimately save herself from the unscrupulous clutches of the king? The Lady Raven is a compelling tale and one that is not for the faint-hearted.

Baldric bent down, whispering into his wife’s ear. “I am going to drown you in the river, my love. I want you to hear my words and know that it is I who will kill you. Do not think that I do not know what you did.”
Before Avelina could protest, her face was plunged into the icy water. She tried pulling her head up, but Baldric was too strong. She began to buck her legs around like a mule, desperate to make contact with Baldric, anything to weaken his grip. Baldric climbed on top of her and pinned her body beneath his. “Die, Avelina.” he growled. Hands were flying all around him as he drowned his wife, the only woman he ever loved. Princess Avelina was a fighter and she determined to stay alive, but it was to no avail.
Baldric kept her head under the water well after her body stopped moving. Avelina’s betrayal caused Baldric’s love to turn to hate, just as water turns to ice in the frozen kiss of winter.
“Die, you lying witch. Die! You do not deserve the life you have. You do not deserve me. You have taken everything I’ve loved away and now I will take everything from you.” Baldric’s hands trembled with rage as he dismounted his wife’s limp body. Baldric arose, looking around the grounds to ensure that no witnesses could testify to his crime. Still, he would not suffer the consequence of murdering his wife. To seal his innocence, he gathered heavy rocks from the bank and shoved them in Avelina’s robes.
“They will think it a suicide and my hands will never be traced to her death.” He bent down to see her face one last time before kicking her corpse into the lake.
“I loved you mind, body, and soul. I would have loved you until my dying breath, but I will never think of you again. From this day forth, you no longer consume my heart. May you rest in hell, my love.” He watched her body sink; he was triumphant, sentencing her to the punishment that fitted the crime: death.
Before her body disappeared into the ultramarine water, he spat on her. One final act of defiance.

Author Bio:
Rebecca Henry is a newly published author. Her debut novel is The Lady Raven, A Dark Cinderella Tale, which was published in 2017. The Lady Raven, is for those who have an affinity for fairy tales retold with a link to witches, magic and the macabre.
Her second novel, Louisiana Latte, a chick lit comedy was released February 28th 2019. Louisiana Latte, is a feel good comedy that focuses on the bonds of sisters, and how audacious life can be when you have a diva for one! Both books are available on amazon as well as Barnes & Noble.
Rebecca Henry is a world traveler living abroad in England. Besides being an author of two published books, Rebecca is also a podcast talk host on the show The Latte Talk. The podcast was inspired by her latest novel, Louisiana Latte and her diva sister Deb. She is a serious vegan, gardener, crafter, wife and mom who practices yoga. She loves to laugh, her drug of choice and loves all things witchy with a hint of the macabre. Her favorite holiday is Halloween and her favorite movie of all time is Practical Magic.

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Saturday, May 25, 2019

FREE with Kindle Unlimited: LOVE BY DECEPTION by Debra Elizabeth


Isabel Knott learns the father she never knew has left her a sizeable dowry. The news comes with one restriction--she can never reveal his name. During her first Season, Isabel falls madly in love with Colby Tisbury, but she's afraid his father, Viscount Tisbury, will never accept her as his daughter-in-law because of her lack of connections.

Colby Tisbury must marry, and soon. If he doesn't find a bride before the end of the Season, his father will supply one. When Colby meets sassy Isabel Knott, everything changes--but can he go against his father's wishes and marry a girl utterly lacking in family and connections? 

Isabel is forced to make an impossible choice - reveal her secret identity and bring shame to her true father or lose Colby forever.

LOVE BY DECEPTION is a novel (~200 pages).
Amazon buy link:


“I’m glad to see the color back in your cheeks,” Isabel said as she helped Georgette pin her light brown hair in a stylish bun at the nape of her neck.
“I have you to thank for watching over me. Without your loving attention to my health, I fear this last fever might have taken me.”
“Mrs. Mullins helped sending up savory broth that tempted you to eat again.”
Georgette nodded. “I am very grateful for Mrs. Mullins and that she has stayed on in the household. I know my father’s behavior can be quite trying at times.”
Isabel put the brush down on the dressing table. “Your father is unlikely to change anytime soon, but you must have a care for your health as well. I cannot imagine my life without you.”
Georgette patted Isabel’s hand. “I know, dearest. I feel the same, but we mustn’t overlook the fact that my health has been frail since I was a child. You must be prepared if something were to happen to me.”
“Nonsense, nothing will happen to you. I won’t let it.”
Georgette smiled. “Of course you won’t. I have absolute faith in your nursing skills.”
Isabel offered Georgette her arm for support. “Come; let’s go downstairs for dinner. I dare say your father may be awake soon and will join us in the dining room this evening.”
“That will be nice. I haven’t seen him awake in more than a week. When I’m downstairs, he’s asleep and when he’s awake, I’m upstairs in my chamber. It makes me sad to see him stumble around so deep in his cups, but he wasn’t always like this. Do you remember when he told lively stories of his time living in London during dinner?”
Isabel nodded. “I remember, but I fear the Mr. Condiff of old will not make a reappearance anytime soon. I wish there was something more I could do for him.”
“Isabel, you mustn’t worry about Father. He has stopped listening to reason a long time ago. The only thing we can do now is enjoy the moments when he is lucid.”
The two young women made their way downstairs and into the dining room. Once Georgette was seated comfortably at the table, Isabel went into the parlor to see if Mr. Condiff was awake. She found him in his chair, but he was not sleeping. His skin had taken on a gray pallor and her worst nightmare had come true.
“Georgette! Come quickly,” she cried out.
When Georgette ran into the parlor, tears were streaming down Isabel’s face. “What’s the matter? Why did you cry out?”
Isabel looked at her beloved cousin. “I’m so very sorry. Your father is dead.”


Reviewers Comments:
"If you enjoy historical romance, or have ever dreamed of a Season in London, don't miss this lovely story."
"There is a shocker or two in store when it comes to Isabel. Twists in the story that I never saw coming. Another fun read and great follow-up to its predecessor"

Friday, May 24, 2019

Interview with Alexandrea Weis, REALM

Can you give us a brief overview of your latest book? Is it part of a series?
Realm is a standalone historical fiction novel about the wife of Alexander the Great. She was a footnote to many historians in history, but up until a few decades ago, history was written by men and women were overlooked. I always believed she played a greater role in Alexander’s life, so I wanted to tell her story.

Do you have a favorite character?
Alexander is a favorite character because he is so difficult to write. Historically we know much about him, but little about his nature, so he was a big challenge. Also, his second in command, Hephaestion, was another tough one to write since we know very little about him.
What factors influenced your decision to go with a particular agent or publisher? 
The belief my agent had in me and that publisher had in my book was vital. Make sure you are not just another cog in the wheel. If they don’t believe in you or what you write, they won’t help you to promote and build a brand.

What is your writing process? Do you listen to music or do you like silence?
I prefer silence and never listen to music, but my writing is interrupted by frequent barking, chirping, and assorted animal noises. So I guess that is a sort of music.

Do you outline your story or just go where your muse takes you?
With historical books, you have to outline to make sure you get the history elements right. But with fiction novels outside of historical, I do not outline and go with the flow.

What kinds of marketing [twitter, facebook, blog, forums] are you involved with for promoting your book(s)?
All social media and I have a blog, but I rarely blog since I am constantly writing books. Also, newsletters are important, but hard to keep up with.  

Do you find it difficult to juggle your time between marketing your current book and writing your next book?
Always. When you are in deep in writing, breaking away for marketing can take you out of the story flow, but it is necessary.

What advice would you give a new author just entering into the self-publishing arena?
Get to know your genre and other authors. They will be your biggest source of information. Those who have already made the journey will know better than anyone what to do and not to do.

Besides writing, do you have any other passions?
Animals. I am an animal advocate and also a permitted wildlife rehabber with the LA. Wildlife and Fisheries. When I’m not writing, I am rescuing orphaned and injured wildlife. 

What’s next for you?
The follow up to my YA thriller Death by the River. River of Secrets picks up where Death by the River left off and follows the mystery and murder in the small town of St. Benedict Louisiana revolving around the Devereaux family.   

Alexandrea Weis
Published by: Vesuvian Books
Publication date: May 14th 2019
Genres: Historical, Young Adult

Based on a true story.
When her homeland is conquered by the mighty Alexander the Great, Roxana—the daughter of a mere chieftain—is torn from her simple life and thrown into a world of war and intrigue.
Terrified, the sixteen-year-old girl of renowned beauty is brought before the greatest ruler the world has ever known. Her life is in his hands; her future his to decide.
Without formal education or noble blood, Roxana is chosen by the Greek conqueror to be his bride. Soon she comes to know profound happiness and unyielding desire in her warrior’s arms.
However, being the king’s consort comes at a heavy price. To survive her husband’s treacherous kingdom, she must endure continuous warfare, deadly plots, jealous rivals, victory-hungry generals, and the stigma of being a barbarian. Persian blood will keep her from claiming the grandest title of all—queen—but her reign will seal the fate of an empire.
History tells his story. This is hers.

Author Bio:
Alexandrea Weis, RN-CS, PhD, is a multi-award-winning author of over twenty-seven novels, a screenwriter, ICU Nurse, and historian who was born and raised in the French Quarter of New Orleans. Having grown up in the motion picture industry as the daughter of a director, she learned to tell stories from a different perspective and began writing at the age of eight. Infusing the rich tapestry of her hometown into her novels, she believes that creating vivid characters makes a story moving and memorable.
A member of the Horror Writers Association and International Thriller Writers Association, Weis writes mystery, suspense, thrillers, horror, crime fiction, and romance. She lives with her husband and pets in New Orleans where she is a permitted/certified wildlife rehabber with the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries and rescues orphaned and injured animals.

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Wednesday, May 22, 2019

#Excerpt: WHAT WE DO FOR LOVE by Anne Pfeffer

What We Do For Love
Anne Pfeffer
Publication date: May 21st 2019
Genres: Adult, Contemporary

Thirty-eight year old Nicole Adams has given up on finding love. Instead, the single mother focuses on the things she cherishes most—her sixteen-year old son Justin, her friends, and her art.
When she convinces a prominent Los Angeles museum to feature a piece of her work, a large-scale installation, she thinks her life has finally turned a corner.
Then Justin brings a girl, Daniela, home to live with them. Daniela’s angry parents have thrown her out of the house, because she’s pregnant with Justin’s child. Shattered, Nicole takes Daniela in and, in so doing, is drawn into the inner circle of Daniela’s family—a frightening world of deceit and violence.
Nicole struggles to keep life going as normal. Forced to deal with people she doesn’t trust or like, fearful for the future of both her son and the grandchild they’re expecting, Nicole wonders if she can do what she tells Justin to do: always have faith in yourself and do the right thing.

What We Do for Love won the Chick Lit category of the 2019 Next Generation Indie Book Awards, and finalist for Best Cover Design/Fiction!

From Chapter Four. Justin and Daniela have told Nicole that Daniela cannot return to her own home, but Nicole is nonetheless trying to reach Daniela’s parents.
By nine o’clock, Daniela’s parents still hadn’t called back.
Justin gave me a pointed look. Told you so.
Shocked by the apparent indifference of these people, I asked, “How do they know you’re safe? You could be camping under the freeway right now.”
Daniela’s voice quavered. “I’m sure they think I’m fine.” The sadness in her voice tore me up.
“They’ve got to be worried.” The tiny crack in my mind had widened just a bit, and a tremor of … something ran through me… a premonition, maybe? Or maybe just nerves. “Even if you’ve had a disagreement, they still love you. They’re your parents.”
“They’re not worried.”
I tried to keep my tone brisk and matter-of-fact. “If that’s the case, then of course you must stay tonight!”
“Thank you,” Daniela whispered. At my request, she dialed her phone again and handed it to me. I left another message.
“Hello, Viviana. This is Nicole again. Since I haven’t been able to reach you, Daniela will stay the night here, in a separate room from my son. I’ll make sure she gets to school on time tomorrow. Please feel free to call me.” I left my phone number again, feeling my temper rise as I thought of what these parents had done tonight.
“So,” I said, “let’s get ready for bed!” I kept my voice bright and chipper. “Justin, will you move your sheets out onto the sofa? I’ll put some fresh ones on your bed for Daniela.”
By comparison to Justin’s male friends, whose presence resounded through the house like a herd of elephants, Daniela was almost ghost-like, blending into the background and whispery quiet. And eager to please.
“Let me put the sheets on,” she said. “You shouldn’t have to do that.”
“All right, thanks.” I found her an unused toothbrush and an old t-shirt of mine to sleep in. “And here’s a clean towel.”
Justin’s small bedroom still had its blue plaid wallpaper. The bedspread had borne pictures of teddy bears until he revolted in his freshman year of high school, requesting a plain blue comforter. Justin’s stuff filled every corner, covered every surface: music posters, two guitars and a drum, his bicycle, a debate trophy, comic books, and books with art or math and logic puzzles.
“Thank you again.” Daniela drooped as she sat down on the bed.
“Are you all right, honey?” I sat down next to her. “Do you want to tell me a little more about what’s going on?”
The two dogs galumphed into the room just as Justin’s tall, lean frame appeared in the doorway, dressed in the sweatpants and t-shirt he wore to bed. Midge and Margo rushed the twin bed, trying to climb aboard, but I pushed them gently down onto the rug. I put my arm around Daniela as she shuddered and the tears started to fall. She gripped her hands together tightly. “I did something… that my parents didn’t like. My dad especially.”
Justin fastened his gaze on her as she spoke. His bleak eyes reminded me of the time he’d found a dead baby rabbit in the swimming pool. My throat suddenly felt dry, and a chill ran over me despite the balmy evening air.
“My mom would forgive me, but Dad won’t let me live at home anymore.”
“I’m sure he’ll reconsider. You know, once he cools off.” What could this girl have done? Totalled the family car? Burned down the house?
Could she be…?
No way… I wouldn’t permit myself to have the thought. She’s only sixteen.
Justin spoke up, his voice harsh in the silence. “We have to tell her, Daniela.”
Up until now I’d thought, or kidded myself, that Justin was only helping a girl with a problem. Now, the fear arose that it might be Justin’s problem, too.
I held my breath.
“Daniela’s pregnant,” Justin said. “And I’m the father.”

Author Bio:
Hi! I grew up in the desert around Phoenix, Arizona, where I had a bay quarter horse named Dolly. If I wasn't riding, I was holed up somewhere reading Laura Ingalls Wilder or the Oz books or, later on, Jane Eyre and The Grapes of Wrath. Horses eventually faded as an interest, but I ended up with a lifelong love of books and reading.

After college and eight years of living in cold places like Chicago and New York, I escaped back to the land of sunshine. I now live in California, one mile from the Pacific Ocean, with my dachshund Taco. I have worked in banking and as a pro bono attorney, doing adoptions and guardianships for abandoned children.

As a writer, I'd always been interested in children's books, since they had meant so much to me as a kid. I've found I especially like writing books about teens and twenty-somethings, an age where you make so many decisions about who you are and how you want to spend your life.

I love hearing from readers, so please write to me any time at my website

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