Guest Post & Giveaway: In the Beginning There Was Us by Ingrid Jonach


Guest Post
Why I love writing sci-fi YA
by Ingrid Jonach

I love writing for young adults—mainly because I like reading young adult novels, so I guess I feel like I'm writing for myself. And, even though I’m now well beyond the traditional age bracket, my favourite contemporary author remains Sarah Dessen (who has just released her twelfth novel Saint Anything. Yay!).

When I was writing books for kids, I used to get asked all the time whether I had kids myself. I somewhat sheepishly replied, ‘No,’ as if this somehow disqualified me from being able to entertain and educate that age group. After all, I was a kid once myself.

And that’s exactly how I look at my obsession with young adult novels. I was—not too long ago—a teenager and it left an indelible mark on me. I think what really appeals to me about writing for young adults is that you’re exploring the transition to adulthood, which gives you some really heavy themes like the loss of innocence and search for identity, coupled with characters who vary vastly in maturity.

I’ve always been a big fan of fantasy—more so than science fiction. The books I adored growing up were mostly supernatural (for example, anything by Australian author Victor Kelleher). I particularly adored the horror genre. I devoured anything with vampires in it (WAY before Twilight) and cut my teeth on R. L. Stine.

When I started pitching my first young adult novel—When the World was Flat (and we were in love)—to agents, I actually described it as a fantasy novel. Embarrassing as this is for someone with a writing degree to admit, I wasn’t a reader of science fiction and thought of it largely as stories set in space (hard science fiction). When I finally pieced together that Albert Einstein and his Theory of Everything were science and NOT fantasy (duh!), I started describing my story as science fiction fantasy and then soft science fiction and now science fiction romance and sometimes speculative fiction. The genre, however, that I think really sums it up is the non-existent genre of urban science fiction (a hypothetical counterpart to urban fantasy).

My follow up young adult novel, In The Beginning There Was Us, is also urban science fiction (I’m just going to go ahead and coin it as a genre). Both of my young adult novels look at re-imagined histories and possible scientific explanations for the inexplicable in a contemporary setting. For example, scientific theories I have developed (or dreamed up) about ghosts and luck. I use the term ‘scientific’ loosely, of course. The theories are only based in science – the rest is based in what if?

You know how kids go through the ‘why?’ phase. They ask what you’re doing and when you tell them they want to know why. And when you tell them why their next question is inevitably, ‘why?’ I think I’ve never left that phase behind. I enjoyed maths at school until my teachers stopped being able to explain to me why I needed to understand trigonometry and calculus. Then I dropped it (something I somewhat regret, but that saw me pass my final exams with flying colours!).

This insatiable curiosity has led me to the science fiction genre. The romance that’s spread throughout my novels is just the icing on the cake. Couple both of those with the young adult demographic and I have so much scope for my imagination!

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Title: In The Beginning There Was Us
Author: Ingrid Jonach
Date of Publication: April 28, 2015

Blurb:

What would you do if you were God? If you had the power to not only give life, but take it away in the blink of an eye? These are the questions that haunt fifteen-year-old Abbey Baxter after she resurrects a boy, long lost to the ages.

The achingly beautiful and eternally melancholy Cole not only serves as a welcome distraction from her long-time crush, Elwin, but also eases the heartache that persists since the sudden passing of her younger brother, Junior, four years earlier.

As the intrigue of her relationship with Cole deepens, so too does the mystery that surrounds a growing phenomenon sweeping through her small West Virginian town, transforming the lives of its residents. Around her, two bedroom cottages are transforming into mansions without explanation and residents are waking up to bank balances that have tripled overnight, all under the watchful gaze of the sinister American Laboratory for Particle Physics, located on the outskirts of town.

As Abbey searches for answers in a bid to solve the mystery in partnership with Elwin, she’s forced into a realization that that some things are better left buried, including her newfound love, Cole.

This cautionary tale of heartache and obsession explores the endless possibilities of the universe and its devastating impact on two young lovers from different worlds.

Purchase links: Amazon | Smashwords
Goodreads link

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ABOUT INGRID JONACH

Ingrid Jonach writes books for kids and teens.

Her young adult sci fi romance novels When the World was Flat (and we were in love) and In The Beginning There Was Us are available now.

She is also the author of the picture book A Lot of Things and the chapter books The Frank Frankie and Frankie goes to France published by Pan Macmillan Australia.

Ingrid has worked as a journalist and public relations consultant, and has a Bachelor of Arts in Professional Writing with Honors in Communications.

She lives down under - in Canberra, Australia - with her husband Craig and their pug dog Mooshi.

Website: http://ingridjonach.com/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/IngridJonach
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Ingrid-Jonach/172887016112319
Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/user/IngridJonachAuthor

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Giveaway:

Ingrid is giving away an ebook copy of IN THE BEGINNING THERE WAS US and WHEN THE WORLD WAS FLAT (AND WE WERE IN LOVE)! Open internationally.

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Book Spotlight & Giveaway: Empath by S. Usher Evans





Title: Empath
Author: S. Usher Evans
Genre: Contemporary Fantasy

Lauren Dailey is in break-up hell.

Stuck between moving on and letting go, she puts on a brave face while crying herself to sleep at night. But when a mysterious voice promises escape from her sadness, she is suddenly transported to a new world. And in this place, the slightest touch pulls her out of her tortured emotions into the mind of another - an empath.

The villagers - sweet Aerona and her mischievous twins, wise Siors, and hunky Cefin - welcome her and the blessings her empath powers bring. But this world is not without its dangers. The Anghenfil, a fire-breathing monster, has haunted the village for decades, and has a taste for empaths. And that mysterious voice promising escape from sadness? It's sounding more like a whisper tinged with smoke and embers.

Can Lauren keep the monsters in the mountain and in her head at bay? Or will she succumb to the darkness like the empath before her…

***

Excerpt:

"Empaths have been legend for centuries," Siors said. "Some of the old texts say that an empath can read emotions, and others say that an empath is really connecting with the other person's soul."

Lauren grimaced; she wasn’t sure she liked the sound of that.

"So, there aren't any other empaths I can talk to?" she asked.

“No, the only other one I am aware of was taken by the Anghenfil."

"So this….Anghenfil." Lauren swallowed nervously. "You said that you found me near the caves where it lives? What…is it exactly?”

Siors placed a thick and dusty book on the table, flipping it open and turning the dusty pages. He paused and turned it around, showing Lauren a painting of a winged red dragon looming over a flaming city. Bright red eyes and gleaming white teeth rounded out the frightening image.

"Beautiful," Lauren pushed the book away before she had a full-blown panic attack. “And it ate the last empath, you say?"

"The empath had been summoned by the king to the castle in Traegaron. The beast itself had not been seen in centuries. Most thought it was just a myth. And then it appeared and destroyed half the castle as it hunted for her. Those who were there say it wrapped her up in its fearsome tail and carried her to these very mountains.”

Lauren caught the vision of the beast in the book again and wondered if it was the reason why she was here. She remembered that odd voice that she heard in her office moments before the earthquake—
She quickly squashed that train of thought to refocus her attention on Siors, and she began to play with her necklace anxiously.

"The beast has been seen every few years since that day," Siors said. “But I'm afraid we do not know what powers the beast may have; just the fire and the claws are enough to be getting on with."

"Do you have any more books about the Anghenfil?" Lauren asked.

"This is the end of my compendium on the subject," Siors smiled. "But I shall send word to my scholar-brother. He is the keeper of the great library in Traegaron and one of the wisest men in the entire kingdom. If there is more to be known—about the Anghenfil, or about yourself—then he will know it.”

***

About the Author:

S. Usher Evans is an author, blogger, and witty banter aficionado. Born in a small, suburban town in northwest Florida, she was seventeen before she realized that not all beach sand is white.

From a young age, she has always been a long-winded individual, first verbally (to the chagrin of her ever-loving parents) and then eventually channeled into the many novels that dotted her Windows 98 computer in the early 2000's.

After high school, she got the hell outta dodge and went to school near the nation's capital, where she somehow landed jobs at National Geographic, Discovery Channel, and the British Broadcasting Corporation, capping off her educational career with delivering the commencement address to 20,000 of her closest friends.

She determined she'd goofed off long enough with that television nonsense and got a "real job" as an IT consultant. Yet she continued to write, developing 20 page standard operating procedures and then coming home to write novels about bounty hunters, teenage magic users, and other nonsense. After a severe quarter life crisis at age 27, she decided to finally get a move on and share those novels with the world in hopes that she will never have to write another SOP again.

Links

http://www.susherevans.com

http://www.twitter.com/s_usherevans

http://www.facebook.com/susherevans

http://www.goodreads.com/susherevans


Buy Links:

http://www.amazon.com/Empath-S-Usher-Evans-ebook/dp/B00UUD3WMK/

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/empath-s-usher-evans/1121480923?ean=2940046639773

https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/empath/id977857059?mt=11

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/528430


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Giveaway:

Win an eBook copy of “Empath” per tour stop and a print copy during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Release Day Giveaway: Grayson by KC Falls

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About the Book

grayson_med Title: Grayson (Brotherhood of Souls #3)
Author: K.C. Falls
Genre: Erotic Romance

Life is all about new beginings. Sometimes you have to take big chances to reap big rewards. But the best laid plans don't often factor in the kind of chemistry that takes your breath away.

When Kara traded her bustling urban life for "Low Country" living, she didn't expect to be caught up in a dangerous drama featuring a deliciously smooth talking Southern lawyer with a cause. And she never thought the man she loved would disappear before she had a chance to tell him so.
She can't bring herself to start a new chapter. A chance discovery leads her to a risky decision with serious consequences. But the way Kara sees it, life is all about listening to yourself when your heart has something to say.

This is a stand-alone, full length romance novel. Others in the Soul Family series will follow in 2015. Meant for mature readers, this book has rough language and five-chili hot scenes.

About the Series

Brotherhood of Souls Series. This series is composed of five interconnected stand-alone novels that tell the stories of Grayson, Wyatt, Darren and Noah as well as their cousin Harlen. Five young men brought together by family and tradition, a rich brotherhood of complex souls.

An introduction to their world is found in the first book of the series, Brothers. Brothers is a full length prequel to the series and is FREE at all ebook retailers.

Darren is available now. Wyatt is next followed by Noah and Harlan.

Buy the Book:

Get the first book in the series for free!

And the second book for $0.99!

During the release, the second book in the series is available for only $0.99. Grab it while you can.

About the Author

K.C. Falls is a native of New York who traded the Big Apple for Big Sky country. Her Montana ranch is home to a menagerie of animals including one human male she shamelessly uses for inspiration. Her tales are sharp-edged stories with strong sexy heroes and the women they can't resist.

K.C. finds time to feed the chickens, study Native Americana (she's part Cheyenne--that's what the 'C' stands for) and cook incredible food because there isn't a restaurant around for many miles. She writes in between bites. K.C. loves to hear from readers, so please feel free to follow her on any of her social media channels. And don't forget to check out her website. You can sign up to her mailing list there, to hear about new releases and any promotional sales coming up. You can also find some back story for her current and future works. Website: http://www.kcfalls.com Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/kcfallsbooks Twitter: https://twitter.com/kcfallsbooks (@kcfallsbooks)

Giveaway

10 lucky winners will each receive a box set of "Year of the Billionaire". a Rafflecopter giveaway

Release Day: Trespass by Mikey Campling

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About the Book

166_0.218591001427739589_tp_cv_hr Title: Trespass
Author: Mikey Campling
Genre: Science Fiction / Fantasy

Three stories, separated by five thousand years, united by one deadly secret:

Somewhere, sometime, the stone is waiting.

Trespass combines gritty, edgy modern-day action with a thrilling adventure across time. Discovered over 5,000 years ago, the Darkeningstone affects everyone who finds it.

Jake was too smart to believe the rumours about Scaderstone Pit, but now he's in more danger than he could ever have imagined.

In 1939, as World War II looms, the lives of two men will be changed forever.

Over 5,000 years ago, a hermit will keep the stone a secret. But someone is watching him - someone with murder in his heart.

When it finds you, what will you see when you look into The Darkeningstone?

Author Bio

Mikey grew up in North Yorkshire, but he refuses to be classified according to Northern stereotypes, which is just the sort of bloody-minded attitude you'd expect from a Yorkshireman. During his first day at school, he discovered the wondrous world that is The Book Corner, and he has never really left it.

He now lives in Devon, on the edge of the wilds of Dartmoor, with his wife, two children, and a black Labrador called Lottie who will only bark when she's asleep. And lots and lots of books.

You can find out more on Mikey's website: mikeycampling.com

You can also get two free books, free audio stories and free artwork by joining his mailing list at: mikeycampling.com/giveaway

Links


Book Review: Dead Secret by Richard Milton


Dead Secret
by Richard Milton
Mystery/Thriller with paranormal/supernatural elements
Amazon US | UK
3.5 Stars
Review copy supplied by author


Blurb:

"It was obvious from the day he was born that the Gabriel boy took after his mother in every way. He would be a marked man from birth to death . . ."

Investigative journalist Tony Gabriel inherits a bizarre mystery when he is left the research papers and books of a long-dead Cambridge historian - and a human skull. With no clue to the meaning of this mysterious legacy, Tony puts his years as a reporter to use to investigate who he really is - and is stunned by what he uncovers.

"Suddenly, all the rules of his life seemed to have been broken at once."

Tony's investigations lead him to The Chadwick Foundation - a wealthy and secretive institution whose beliefs in the paranormal both repel and attract him. Are they just rich, powerful people playing an elaborate game, or have they truly gained paranormal powers to penetrate the mystery of the future?

Eve Canning is the keeper of The Foundation's secrets, a powerful and enigmatic woman whose regal beauty turns Tony’s search for the truth into a very personal quest - and his life and beliefs upside down.

Review:

Dr. Tony Gabriel is a science writer for a magazine called Insight and most of the time he works on exposes of fraudulent cases of psychics, mediums and fortune-tellers. As a scientist, Tony doesn't believe there is any evidence to support paranormal activity.

After his mother’s death, however, Tony soon comes to doubt that. For there are people out there who seem to know things about him, that even Tony doesn't know. How do they know all these things? Is any of it real, or is Tony just being led up the garden path?

His mother was involved in something called the Chadwick Foundation and after her death, Tony discovers all these papers and something even stranger: a human skull. What was his mother involved in? And why didn't he know any of it before?

The book is well written and keeps up the pace. The action takes place in three time lines, the present day, 1700s France and after World War II and they all blended together well. Tony is a likeable and engaging character and the reader feels they are on the quest with Tony as he tries to figure everything out.

We have everything from palm-reading, I Ching, physiognomy, numerology and people who will pay millions to find out if any of them are true, including governments and the rich elite. But Tony's investigations haven't gone unnoticed and someone doesn't want him to find the truth, someone prepared to kill to keep their secrets.

Eve was a mysterious Femme Fatale, but I just didn't feel any chemistry between her and Tony at all, but I can't put my finger on why. They had sex, but they may as well have been sitting down to tea and eating sandwiches. I just didn't feel their attraction to each other at all.

I enjoyed the book, it was an interesting tale with lots of twists and turns that would keep any mystery fan happy, but I'm afraid the ending let it down.

The rest of the book was so exciting, leading up to something and then with the ending - it just sort of ambled along and finished. But it didn't feel finished. I was surprised when I turned the next page and the book didn't continue. It ended with a whimper rather than a bang and it left me disappointed at the end.


Cover Reveal Forbidden Darkness

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About The Book

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Title: Forbidden Darkness
Author: Alec John Belle
Genre: YA Paranormal

Being a sixteen year old Monster Hunter sucks.

That's what Heather Hawkins learns just days before her sixteenth birthday. After dealing with her best friend, Kristen's, attempted suicide, the last thing Heather wants is any more drama. When the realistic dreams of Heather being haunted by a guy named Kadin begin, she learns the truth. She is a Monster Hunter, and on her birthday, she will undergo a change that will make her stronger, more powerful, and nearly invincible to Monsters. Along with having a hot new trainer named Philip, she believes that this will be a new beginning for herself.

Unfortunately, Monsters aren't the only thing Heather needs to worry about. With someone stalking her dreams, she realizes there may be more than just Monsters in the world, and that Kadin will do anything to stop her from helping the Monster Hunters. Even if that means unleashing an entity that was locked away by his people thousands of years ago. In this all-new paranormal young adult series, romances will be formed, evil becomes unleashed, and everyone Heather loves will soon be at risk. Because in a world where Monsters walk the earth, anything is possible.

Author Bio

Alec John Belle is an online high school student that resides in the state of Massachusetts. At the age of 16 he wrote his first novel, Before I Break. His hobbies include reading, writing and obsessing over Pretty Little Liars. He writes about tough topics that many are too afraid to talk about, like suicide, homosexuality, self-harm, cyberbullying, anxiety disorders, addiction, among other teenage issues, and he often blends these ideas with the paranormal.

Links

Release Day: A Taylor-Made Love by Kary Rader

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About The Book

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000038_00071]Title: A Taylor-Made Love
  Author: Kary Rader
  Genre: New Adult Romance

When fate spares your life, your destiny is always love

Twenty-year-old widow and cancer survivor Taylor Smith-Taylor is running her late husband’s billion-dollar gaming business because she’s made a vow to keep TME—and Gavin’s memory—alive. But she’s falling hard for her sexy attorney Brad Richards, and it’s not just their professional connection that has her tied in knots. When Taylor’s new idea takes off, she relies on Brad to help.

Using company funds to back the innovative project, they begin a tumultuous affair and a multi-million dollar negotiation that could dominate the market or put the company in jeopardy. As the corporate dealings escalate, their volatile relationship leaves their priorities more tangled than their bed sheets, and a fatal accounting error divides them, putting the company on the brink of bankruptcy. Brad pushes Taylor to embrace her idea, and him, by selling TME—a decision that, for her, goes deeper than money. When she refuses, it seems easier for both to walk away, and only a perspective from the grave can help her realize her future comes down to one choice: the love she’ll lose or the love she’ll make.

 Praise for A Taylor-Made Life WINNER of the 2014 RomCon Reader’s Choice Award FINALIST in the 2015 EPIC (Electronic Publishing Industry Coalition) eBook Awards

 Seven years ago while I was pregnant with my youngest child, my husband was diagnosed with Stage IV melanoma cancer. He went through surgery, chemo and was pronounced cancer-free two weeks before my son Brady was born. I never dealt with those emotions I experienced while he was sick. There wasn’t time. But three years ago when a friend’s daughter was diagnosed with cancer, all of them came flooding back. As a result, I wrote A Taylor-Made Life. A Taylor-Made Life became an Amazon Bestseller and I’ve received letters from all over the world (e.g.UK, France, Uganda) saying how the story has touched hearts. It has a 4.21 Goodreads average with over 400 ratings and recently won the 2014 RomCon Reader’s Choice Award.

The story is a finalist in the 2015 Electroinc Publishing Industy Coalition’s (EPIC) eBook Award. ATML also won several RWA chapter contests. It continues to touch people with its special message.

  “A Taylor-Made Life is one of the best books I’ve read this year and it’s not one I’ll soon forget… Taylor and Gavin stole my heart and my breath, and I wasn’t ready to let them go.” – Nikki Barrett, Storm Goddess Book Reviews

  “Beautifully written, and I would dare anyone not to cry….. Gavin and Taylor have such depth and emotion, it’s hard not to fall in love with them. These two characters will remain in my memory forever.” – Melissa Limoges, Insert Clever Quip Here Book Reviews

“6 Stars, 2 full boxes of Kleenex…Beautiful!” – a.c. Mason, bestselling author “Kary Rader is a wonderful new voice in New Adult fiction. Taylor-Made is a must-read.”– Jill Limber, author and editor, Boroughs Publishing Group

Author’s Bio

Kary Rader is a part-time Twitter sage, stay-at-home mother of three, and slave to the characters and worlds inside her head. Always creative, she’s drawn to stories with fantastical worlds and creatures. With a little bit of magic and divine guidance, there isn’t anything that can’t be accomplished with words. It’s the power of words that creates and destroys. Vanquishing evil and injustice while finding eternal love in the process is all in a day’s work. With the help of her critique partners and master cartographer imaginary places come to life.

Links

Author Links: Website/Blog: www.karyrader.com
  Twitter: https://twitter.com/KaryRader
  FB Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/KaryRaderauthor
  Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6998567.Kary_Rader
  Book Links: Goodreads Amazon