Monthly Archives: March 2019

Jugend – Blitz

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Historical Fiction
Release Date: March 31, 2019
Publisher: Unsugarcoated Media
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In 1933, after Hitler’s rise to power, the paramilitary HitlerJugend, or Hitler Youth, became the only permitted youth organization in Germany, then known as The Third Reich.
It’s 1937 now, and a fourteen-year-old German youth, Ernst, is part of a secret mission which will send a group of teen-aged boys to London under the pretense of a bicycle tour to spy for the Nazis. The cyclists’ objective: identify both geographical and human targets for subsequent elimination as Europe approaches a flashpoint that Hitler intends to exploit by waging all-out war.  Ernst’s mentor, Officer Müller, considers him the perfect fit for a special assignment—spy on a wealthy British Jewish family considered a threat to the Reich as they shelter Jewish refugees from Nazi oppression.
In a parallel story, a modern-day American teen-aged orphan, Clark, has fallen under the spell of white supremacy ideology after a series of family misfortunes.  Having lost his mother as a child to cancer and then his father a couple of years later to war in Iraq, he is in the hands of his unscrupulous guardian who manages to plant him as a child-agent in a Muslim household.  Clark’s purpose: prove that the randomly-chosen Muslim family must be terrorists.
Each youth approaches his assignment with a masked heart filled with hate and a deep misunderstanding of who his hosts are, roiling the boys in emotional conflict as events unfold, and forcing each to face what will be the hardest decision of his entire life—help destroy what his handlers fear or find the courage to think for himself and face the consequences.
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Excerpt
Foreword
By Ben Parris
    In the 1930’s, the world was sinking into an abyss of bigotry and imperialism, each flawed concept nudging the other to the brink of global conflict. Eventually, virtually every country in a world awash in propaganda would be drawn into the coda of the Great War that could come to be known as World War II.
    Jugend’s story is wrapped in a little-known, fascinating true story of Hitler Youth trained to spy on England and Scotland in advance of the war the Nazis intended to start, roaming the countryside on bicycles to identify both geographical and human targets for destruction and assassination.  In Jugend, a Jewish family becomes the focus of a shameless mission to plant a boy in a household to work an agenda that is far from clear to him.
    In an eerily parallel story, Jugend also explores modern-day white supremacists in the United States who plant their own child-agent in a Muslim household. Here there is no multi-country alliance and state machinery to support a full-scale assault on decency, but the victims are targeted and the danger is real nonetheless.
    It’s the story of children caught up in an age-old conflict and used as next-generation guided missiles to perpetuate the agenda of hate.  It’s about how far we’ve come and where we need to be.  It’s about two individual children out of many who are forced to face moral choices to carry out missions of hate or to break their brainwashing through first-hand observation of those they were expected to revile.
    As a writer of historical fiction, I am always impressed when the flavor and details of an age are captured in both mood and accuracy; as an educator, I would like to see this particular insightful work in our public schools. With first-class, cinematic workmanship, Jugend provides a magnificent depiction of a course of events in a narrative that never flags or falters.
    This work, however, not only provides a tale of literary worth, but also occupies a higher plane of value by tackling the most complex aspects of the enduring human condition with both clarity and dignity.
    Here we find the ugliness and beauty of human nature, and the power and variability of culture to harm or heal. Jugend does not try to address all issues of racism and prejudice, and it shouldn’t.
    The story is a straightforward one that goes to the core of human understanding where light, tragedy and redemption can be found. 

About the Author
AALIA LANIUS, a California native and convert to Islam in 1999, hails from a multi-cultural background, both German and Mediterranean, giving her first-hand knowledge of the topics addressed in her public speaking and creative works.  Her debut novel, Tough Love, a biographical fiction novel, has sold in countries around the world.  Visit the author online at www.UnsugarcoatedMedia.com.  Stay connected on Instagram: @aalia_unsugarcoated
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Her Consort by Maren Smith – Release Tour

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From salvage mission to cluster-fuck before they even got out of the hatch. That was some kind of record… even for them.

Her Consort by Maren Smith … Out Now!

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Amazon US → https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07Q24TMNF/
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Or read for #FREE in KindleUnlimited!!!

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EXCERPT:

“I love belts.” He winked, and she trembled all the harder when he knelt down behind her. The cuffs clinked together as he selected which end to use first. “Implements of correction that one can wear, always at the ready.”

“What exactly do you think I should be corrected for?” He pretended to think about it. “How about all the times you drove me to absolute distraction?”

She was so astonished by that lack of reasoning, she almost didn’t notice he had fastened the first cuff around her unresisting ankle, and then buckled that around the right table leg. “I drove you? You’re the one who won’t stop walking around the ship naked!”

“Yes, but who ignores it? Do you have any idea how cold this ship is when you’re wet? Your first dozen strokes ought to be for shrinkage alone. And all those times you called me ‘asshat’?” He shifted to her other side, opening the cuff to buckle down her left ankle. “Granted, I didn’t know what that meant until now, but still…” He circled to the head of the table and leaned down beside her. Hands clasped, weight braced on his elbows, he shook his head. “Poor innocent, little human. Don’t worry. I am going to make this such an education for you.” Ruffling her hair, he stood again.

“You idiot!” she huffed, whipping her hair back out of her eyes. “It’s a curse, not a suggestion. And like hell I’m going to stand here and be taught anything by the likes of y-ah!” She lurched in her bonds, every inch of her straining to escape the lash of pure fire that wrapped her ass, hugging it in the grip of all that supple leather before letting go.

“Is it?” Kogan asked, shifting that deceptively soft strap to his other hand. “Is it really?”

The sting was incredible and yet, when he let his free hand wander a brushing caress across the welt he’d just created, her eyes damn near closed in erotic delight.

BLURB:

She was a salvage operator, patrolling the depths of deep space.

He was a professional consort to royalty, built like a Neanderthal. Twice her width and twice her weight, his six-pack abs had six-pack abs. She knew, because she’d seen them.

It really was kind of too bad they didn’t get along.

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About Maren Smith:

Fortunate enough to live with my Daddy Dom, I am a Little, coffee fanatic, administrator at two of my local BDSM dungeons, resident of the wilds of freakin’ Kansas (still don’t know how I ended up here) and submissive to the love of my life. An International and USA Bestselling Author, I have penned more than 160 novels, novellas and short stories, and am the author of the Masters of the Castle series.

I also write under the names of Denise Hall, Darla Phelps, and Penny Alley.

Want information on free stories, new releases, takeovers, giveaways and prizes? Join my newsletter! http://MarenSmith.com/newsletter/

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Native Companions – Blitz

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World Literature, Historical Fiction
Date Published: August 2018
Publisher: Xlibris
 
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The prologue is a death-bed scene, where Rex Graham and his parents say goodbye to his beloved, Aboriginal grandmother. The young man promises to fulfill Granelda Yaraan’s dying wish to complete his doctorate degree in anthropology. While on study location in the Central Australian desert, Rex discovers a small Aboriginal artefact lying in a dry creek-bed bearing the markings of his tribal totem, whose territory is located in the south-easterly region of the continent.
On his return home, he lays awake, tormented by a vision of Gran’s face, urging him to discover the lost tribal dreamtime legends. He is planning a walkabout to the neighbouring bushland at Yaraan Grove, where an ancient, sacred tree is located, the resting place of his grandmother’s ashes.
Keen to discover some ground-breaking information for his thesis, Rex suddenly remembers a collection of old paintings that his Gran had treasured, promising to preserve them for him, until he was able to interpret their true meanings.
Rex crept down to the library safe, carefully unwrapping the very old parchments and spreading them out on the floor. There were 24 in all, a couple of mythical characters: a bunyip and a birdman known as a keeng-keeng, a hand-sketched map, and a mountain journey. The artist was Gran’s great-grandfather, yet he could obviously read and write because he had labeled some of his works in English grammar.
After carefully re-packing the collection, Rex returned it to the safe and slept soundly till day-break, when he loaded his back-pack and waved to his folk before departing on his journey of discovery. Rex spent the day exploring the magnificent lakeside National Park, but by evening, he was disappointed that he had not uncovered any clues about his ancestors, who had occupied the territory, other than the old scar-tree where his grandmothers remains rest, where a carving of the Booran totem ear-marked a large rock. Rex envisages Gran’s face in the scar on the tree-trunk, caused by Aboriginal boat-crafting. Feeling intoxicated by the bush atmosphere, he spreads his swag and reclines under ‘Gran Yan’s’ canopy.
As Rex falls asleep, the bush comes to life and Gran Yan shares stories with the young trees about the adventures and Dreamtime legends of the Booran tribe, that she learned from ancient priests who shared the mythology at corroborees.
The book is separated into six parts, each containing a glossary of characters involved in the odysseys. The preface contains an overview of Australian indigenous society, their philosophy of living, cultural traditions spiritualism, and language.
An index of tribal connection, names and a glossary of mixed Aboriginal languages and meanings are included at the end of the book, including a bibliography.
24 hand-drawn illustrations created by myself, are peppered throughout the book to keep the reader visually connected to events and characters as they transpire.
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About the Author

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I grew up in South Australia where I received an excellent education before training as a nurse. After a fulfilling nursing career, I spent several years working in the Flinders Ranges at Wilpena Pound where I learned a wealth of knowledge about Aboriginal history in the district. After marrying a farmer, I was kept busy raising four children before returning to my nursing career. It was at that point that I decided that too many people are over medicated with prescription drugs, and the pharmaceutical industry is over embodied in the medical discipline that is supposed to ‘do no harm’.
I undertook studies in traditional medicine and graduated with a degree in Naturopathy and herbal medicine, and went on to study Traditional Chinese Medicine practices including acupuncture, with which I am still a practicing therapist. Having written this story some years previously I was given approval by an indigenous friend to publish the story while living on Bribie Island, where I did most of my research.
After rewriting the story, I first published a junior version in 2017, but revised and rewrote the book, releasing it as junior to adult fiction book in 2018. I have also written a sequel, that was released concurrently, and the third book in the Dreamtime mysteries trilogy, Return to Eternity is almost completed.
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SPOKEN – Cover Reveal

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SPOKEN

by Melanie Weiss
Publication Date: March 12, 2019
Genres: Adult, Young Adult, Coming of Age

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AVAILABLE NOW! (#Free with #KindleUnlimited)

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SYNOPSIS

High school freshman Roman Santi has everything — good looks, great friends, a mansion with an infinity swimming pool — except the one thing he really wants. A relationship with his father.

When Roman’s life gets turned upside down, (thanks, Mom!?), he is forced to leave his pampered Hollywood lifestyle and move into his grandparents’ Midwestern home. Sleeping on a lumpy pullout sofa and starting at a new high school is the worst, but Roman’s life starts to look up when his pink-haired friend, Zuzu, and his crush, a classmate named Claire, introduce him to performance poetry through the high school’s Spoken Word Club. While his mom is flying back and forth to L.A., trying to return them to the life they had, Roman becomes part of a diverse group of characters who challenge his rather privileged view of the world. Through Spoken Word, Roman recognizes the hole in his own life he needs to fill and discovers his voice. Spoken Word leads Roman on a journey of new friendships, first love, and finding the dad he never knew.

“Spoken” is an uplifting, funny, and heartfelt coming-of-age story that captures how the honesty of performance poetry binds together students from all different walks of life and forever changes Roman’s life.

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EXCLUSIVE REVEAL EXCERPT

I crash onto the brown leather sofa in the family room, even though I’m all sweaty from playing an hour of basketball with Sebastian. I jam a mound of Chunky Monkey into my mouth straight from the container. Those are two things I’m not supposed to do in my house.

Technically, this is Kirk’s house, but my mom and I have lived here for four years, so, basically, it’s my house, too. I’m watching, for the umpteenth time, Catch Me if You Can, which is one of Kirk’s favorite movies. I figure that cancels out the other stuff I shouldn’t be doing.

Rather than more hanging out, I know I need to deal with The Iliad, which Mrs. Lee assigned us last week in English. But if there ever was a quick fix for wanting to read, this 750-page epic Greek poem written a thousand years ago would do the trick. I mean, maybe in college you have to read a book like that. In ninth grade, it’s just a sadistic teacher move. I’ll look at the SparkNotes later on, which is probably what every single kid in the class will be doing.

I commit to the seventy-inch screen and burrow my whole body into the cushy sofa. I love this part, where a teenage con artist, played by Leo DiCaprio, starts to write his name on the chalkboard, introducing himself as the substitute teacher, even though he is really another student in the class.

Just as I’m comfortably comatose, I hear tires screech into the driveway. As I look out the window, Kirk jumps from his silver Mercedes sedan and rushes toward the house. Now this is weird, because Kirk is never home before dinner on a weekday, especially when he’s directing a movie, like he is now, on the Universal backlot.

I slide down lower on the couch, but he doesn’t even glance my way. I watch as Kirk, his face flushed red, charges through the marble foyer and up the stairs toward the master bedroom suite. His hefty frame makes a loud thud on each step as he climbs.

I grab another full spoon of ice cream and return my attention to Leo, but then I hear the yelling.

“This is shameful, Steph!” Kirk screams at my mom.

The bedroom door slams shut. Now it’s just muffled voices as they continue to argue. I drop the full spoon back into the sweating carton, not hungry anymore. This is ratcheted up way past their usual fighting.

I turn the volume up on the TV, hoping that will help me focus on what’s in front of me instead of what’s going on upstairs.

Then I see a few big drips of ice cream on the dark cushion between my legs.

“Shit!” I say to myself as I lean forward to mop up the mess with my T-shirt. My smearing has the wrong result. The white, sticky stain takes on a life of its own.

I don’t need Kirk to see this and be pissed at me today, too. Mom’s got him worked up enough about something.

I shift my thigh so it’s covering the evidence. I’ll deal with it later.

Turning my head to look up at the stairs, I wonder what annoying thing Mom did now. I’m caught off guard as I see her whip down the stairs, calling frantically from the hallway, “Roman, where are you?” Seeing me on the sofa, she rushes into the room. As she grabs my hand, my left thigh sharply separates from the sofa, and she pulls me up to my feet.

“We’re leaving here. We have to go now.”

Mom sniffles big. Her eyes are wet and red. She’s wearing white shorts and a black tank top with the word PINK spelled out in pink rhinestones. Her dark hair is shoved into a messy ponytail. This is not how my mom would ever leave the house. Something bad happened.

“Pack some clothes,” she says softly. “And your toothbrush.”

Dazed, I stand my ground until she grabs my arm and marches me through the sparkling kitchen, with its white-marble countertops and two of everything—two fridges, two ovens, and even two dishwashers. Sunlight pours in through the many windows. I’m hurried past the kitchen island, with its four red-leather barstools. I’ve spent countless hours here, sitting on my butt and eating, doing homework, or just hanging out.

I’m not giving up all this awesomeness, am I?

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ABOUT MELANIE WEISS

Melanie Weiss is a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University and worked as a journalist for newspapers and magazines for 20 years. She began writing her novel, Spoken, shortly after her younger child left for college in 2015 and she became an “empty nester.” She currently manages a scholarship foundation at her local high school that provides scholarship support to more than 60 graduating high school seniors each year. Spoken is her first novel but it won’t be her last.

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Dawn Michelle Hardy
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IG @TheLiteraryLobbyist

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The Bloodstone Series – Blitz

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The Bloodstone Series
Historical Thriller
Date Published: Feb. 21, 2019
Publisher: Books to Go Now
 
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The set contains three stories centered around Victorian Detective Inspector Rudyard Bloodstone. In Silk, the first in the series and set in 1888, the same year as the Ripper murders, Detective Bloodstone is chasing his own serial killer. With little evidence to go on, his few leads bring him under political scrutiny when his investigation results in a clash with an influential Viscount.
Snifter of Death is book two in the series. When a rash of wealthy men who have nothing in common other than the cause of their deaths…arsenic poisoning, Rudyard and his partner struggle as every lead they have ends up a dead end. The tip they need comes from an unusual source and they must peel the layers of the case away to discover the revenge filled suspect.
Choosing Heart or Home is the one story in the set that doesn’t have Rudyard working a criminal case. It is a warm-hearted romance set during Christmas 1889, he decides to go home to Wales to visit his family for the holidays and take the opportunity to introduce them to his lady love. As so often happens, things don’t go as Rudyard envisioned.
About the Author

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I was born and raised in Chicago. My father was a history professor and my mother was, and is, a voracious reader. I grew up with a love of history and books. My parents also love traveling, a passion they passed onto me. I wanted to see the places I read about, see the land and monuments from the time periods that fascinated me. I’ve had the good fortune to travel extensively throughout Europe, the Near East, and North Africa.
  I am a retired police detective. I spent twenty-five years in law enforcement with two different agencies. My desire to write came in my early teens. After I retired, I decided to pursue that dream. I write three different series. My paranormal romance series is called, Knights in Time. My romantic thriller series is Dangerous Waters. The newest is The Bloodstone Series, which is historical suspense with romantic elements. Each series has different time periods, which I find fun to write.
I currently live in the Pacific Northwest with my husband and four wild and crazy rescue dogs.
 
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