Friday, September 27, 2013

Guest Post by Mina Lobo, author of That Fatal Kiss

Hey, minions!  I have fellow author, friend and Goth babe extraordinaire, Mina Lobo visiting my blog today.  She just released her debut novel, That Fatal Kiss this week and is doing a special post for my minion fans.  Pretty awesome, huh?  Please welcome, Mina...

Hello, fans.  Below is a small excerpt of my new fantasy romance, That Fatal Kiss.

Persephone glared at him. “You might put yourself to good use rather than just standing there, laughing at me.”

Hades was before her in an instant, swooping down to pick up the pin and gathering the folds of her gown up on one shoulder. “But it affords me such pleasure,” he said, clipping the folds together before twirling her around so that he could arrange the other shoulder.

“Then mock me, if you must,” Persephone said, swatting at him when he stole a peek down her neckline. “You aging degenerate.”

“Madam, you wound me,” Hades stated crisply, giving the newly pinned cloth a final tweak. He turned her around once more and shoved her so that she was forced to sit down on their bed.

“Have a care, Hades!” she admonished without heat. A smile broadened her lips as the Lord of the Underworld played Lady’s maid. He solemnly took her foot and placed a sandal upon it, lacing it quickly. “You’ve done this before, have you?” Persephone asked, and then squealed as he tied the lace too tightly. “Gently, you brute!”

“Really, Persephone, you might address me with the respect due to your King,” he pointed out, taking her other foot in hand.

“Yes, I might. But what joy would there be in that?”

“Very little, I should think,” Hades acknowledged, rising to his feet and grasping both of her hands to pull her up. He stared down at her for a moment and then noted, in a warm and hushed tone, “You’re really quite lovely, you know.”

* * *

That Fatal Kiss, is set in a mythical Greece. In it, Persephone and Hades, Queen and King of the Underworld, engage in a bit of teasing as they prepare to meet with the half-mortal son of a fellow god, who's come to request a really big favor. Throughout the book, Persephone breaks Hades' chops over the difference in their ages, while Hades "kills her with kindness." Beneath the raillery, however, is a growing affection which always turns up to take the edge off the silly taunts.

Some folks do more than gently tease, of course; they launch wicked barbs under the guise of wit and expect their significant others to take it all in stride. OK, I agree that it's a generally favorable characteristic to be able to laugh at yourself, but I really don't want to spend the majority of my time dodging the sarcasm of the person who's supposed to love me best. Of course, if that sort of put-down "joking around" works within your relationship's dynamic, then rock on. I guess.So, when does teasing cross the line? Maybe never, for some couples? What do you think? Tell us in the comments!

About the Book
In That Fatal Kiss, life-giving Persephone seeks a mate but the goddess' mother frustrates her plans. Then Hades, King of the Underworld, spirits Persephone away to rule with him below, as his bride. Yet, even as she awaits rescue, Persephone aches to be consumed by the fire in the dark lord's immortal soul.  

Get your copy here!

About the Author
Mina Lobo writes dark and whimsical romances, dodges the slings and arrows of her outrageous college-aged son, and feels compelled to do things in threes. She digs comedic horror, alternative rock, and Belgian chocolates. 

Visit Mina's Web site, Some Dark Romantic, from September 24 - 29, for your chance to win an e-book copy of That Fatal Kiss!
Blog: Some Dark Romantic
Facebook: mina.lobo.1
Twitter: @GothMomLite
GothMomLite Will Tumblr For Ya

Thanks for stopping by, Mina.  What do you think?  Isn't that excerpt delish?

Mina B.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

3rd Annual Banned Books Week Hop

September 22-28th, 2013 is Banned Book Week!  And to celebrate, this is my 3rd year participating in the Annual Banned Books Week Giveaway Hop hosted by  I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and Mary from BookHounds.  Supporting banned books is a passion of mine.    Once again, I'm posting the list  new and classic books that make up the ALA's "Top Ten Challenged Books Lists by Year: 2001-2012."
Here is an example of last year's challenged books:

- Captain Underpants (series), by Dav Pilkey.
Reasons: Offensive language, unsuited for age group
- The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie.
Reasons: Offensive language, racism, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group
- Thirteen Reasons Why, by Jay Asher.
Reasons: Drugs/alcohol/smoking, sexually explicit, suicide, unsuited for age group
- Fifty Shades of Grey, by E. L. James.
Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit
- And Tango Makes Three, by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson.
Reasons: Homosexuality, unsuited for age group
- The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini.
Reasons: Homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit
- Looking for Alaska, by John Green.
Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group
- Scary Stories (series), by Alvin Schwartz
Reasons: Unsuited for age group, violence
- The Glass Castle, by Jeanette Walls
Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit
- Beloved, by Toni Morrison
Reasons: Sexually explicit, religious viewpoint, violence

To make thing easier, I'm giving a free $10 Amazon Gift Card for one (1) lucky winner.  Our winner can choose their preferred banned or challenged book.  Cool, huh?
Let me clarify: One (1) lucky winner can win a $10 Gift Card from Amazon! Check out the details on how to enter.  See below and tell your friends!

To enter

You MUST be a GFC follower of my blog & MUST fill the form.

Extra entries
+1 Subscribe via email to my blog
+1 Like me on Facebook/MinaBurrows
+1 Retweet this Twitter (limit 1 retweet)

Again, the giveaway starts at 12:01 AM EST on Sunday, September 22th and runs September 28th midnight. Contest is open to International participants.

Want to see who else is participating? Click here and hop on by.

Update: Congrats to June M. for winning the Banned Book Hop. The winner was chosen by the reputable and has been notified via email. They have 72 hours to respond.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

CassaStorm by Alex J Cavanaugh - Release Blitz!

CassaStorm’s release blitz is here!  Alex J Cavanaugh's 3rd book in the Cassa series just released yesterday and I'm hear to scream it to the world!  For those that don't know this series has had some serious buzz from science fiction fans and Captain Ninja Minions like me.  Some noteworthy distinctions of this incredible series include Amazon Best Selling Series and CassaFire just won the Pinnacle Book Achievement Award.  How awesome is that?  Rock on, Alex!
CassaStorm's backcover:  
A storm gathers across the galaxy…

Commanding the Cassan base on Tgren, Byron thought he’d put the days of battle behind him. As a galaxy-wide war encroaches upon the desert planet, Byron’s ideal life is threatened and he’s caught between the Tgrens and the Cassans.

After enemy ships attack the desert planet, Byron discovers another battle within his own family. The declaration of war between all ten races triggers nightmares in his son, threatening to destroy the boy’s mind.

Meanwhile the ancient alien ship is transmitting a code that might signal the end of all life in the galaxy. And the mysterious probe that almost destroyed Tgren twenty years ago could return. As his world begins to crumble, Byron suspects a connection. The storm is about to break, and Byron is caught in the middle…

My question to Ninja Captain Alex:
Tell us something about the series that no one has figured out yet?

The Captain's response:
Well, judging from the reaction of those who’ve read CassaStorm, no one has figured out how it all ties together!

Blast the man with this cryptic reply!  Does anyone want to take a guess at that?  

CassaStorm Book Trailer:  
Alex's book trailers are some of the coolest I've ever seen.  #seriously

The Reviews: 
“CassaStorM is a touching and mesmerizing space opera full of action and emotion with strong characters and a cosmic mystery.” – Edi’s Book Lighhouse

"Cavanaugh makes world building on the galactic scale look easy. The stakes affect the entire known universe and yet Cavanaugh makes it intensely personal for our hero. The final installment of this series will break your heart and put it back together."
- Charity Bradford, science fantasy author of The Magic Wakes

“…mesmerizing story of survival, personal sacrifice, tolerance, and compassion. It’s a rare jewel that successfully utilizes both character and plot to tell a story of such immense scope and intimate passion…” - Nancy S. Thompson, author of The Mistaken

Get your copy today!

Amazon    Amazon Kindle     Barnes & Noble     Goodreads

About Alex:  

Alex J. Cavanaugh has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and works in web design and graphics. He is experienced in technical editing and worked with an adult literacy program for several years. A fan of all things science fiction, his interests range from books and movies to music and games. Online he is the Ninja Captain and founder of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group. The author of the Amazon bestsellers, CassaStar and CassaFire, he lives in the Carolinas with his wife.

Find Alex on...
Alex's Website     Alex on Twitter     Goodreads 

Congratulations, Alex.  There is no way this is your last book.

Mina B.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Fox's SLEEPY HOLLOW Starts Tonight!

Well, as you might imagine nothing gets me more excited than reminiscing about a creepy classic.  Although I haven't posted any classic literature reviews since my Chaucer reviews, I still long for the haunting uniqueness that comes from timeless lit like Washington Irving's The Legend of Sleep Hollow.

Can you recall the last time you've read it?  (For those interested, check out my review.)  If not, you're in luck.  At a mere 70+ pages, this short story has enough clout to last a lifetime and inspire Hollywood and other media monsters to reinvent it for our pleasure.  This time Fox has bitten into Irving's classic and created a television series called, Sleepy Hollow.  And oh what an interesting take, indeed.  As the trailer states...from the writers and producers of Star Trek, take a look...

What do you think?  Do you think it holds much promise for those fans who are obsessed with the original?  If you're like me than you enjoyed Tim Burton's Sleepy Hollow the film when it debuted in 1999 with Johnny Depp and Christina Ricci.  

See more wicked #SleepyHollow gifs here

But I have to ask this: Ichabod Crane is a once-in-a-lifetime character--classic to the core.  From The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, here is but a glimpse of him that aptly describes him in a way that makes me envy Irving for his skill:

The cognomen of Crane was not inapplicable to his person. He was tall, but exceedingly lank, with narrow shoulders, long arms and legs, hands that dangled a mile out of his sleeves, feet that might have served for shovels, and his whole frame most loosely hung together. His head was small, and flat at top, with huge ears, large green glassy eyes, and a long snipe nose, so that it looked like a weather-cock, perched upon his spindle neck, to tell which way the wind blew. To see him striding along the profile of a hill on a windy day, with his clothes bagging and fluttering about him one might have mistaken him for the genius of famine descending upon the earth, or some scarecrow eloped from a cornfield.

Now...I ask you: With the many versions of Ichabod Crane's character we've seen over the last several decades, which on equals the original?

Ah, well.  It matters little now.  Tonight we shall see.  I for one am crossing my fingers that this will be a hit.  I know some people don't like when others remake a classic, but I love anything that reinvigorates the original.  

Let's hope this one doesn't disappoint.  Fox's Sleepy Hollow Series Premiere MON 9/8c SEP 16

Mina B

Friday, September 13, 2013

Guest Post: Meredith Allard, author of Her Dear & Loving Husband

Today I have Meredith Allard here discussing the wicked topic about Researching the Salem Witch Trials. Meredith's Her Dear & Loving Husband is on tour this month check out the details on this magical paranormal love story. Please welcome Meredith!

Researching the Salem Witch Trials 
Leave it to me to decide to write paranormal/romance/historical novels—The Loving Husband Trilabiogy—that were set in a New England town I had never been to.  In fact, I decided to set the stories in Salem, Massachusetts by accident.  When deciding on a setting, I stayed away from the Pacific Northwest and Louisiana in the U.S. since other well-known literary vampires live there.  Then I decided that if I wasn’t going Northwest how about Northeast?  I pulled up a map of the U.S., looked at the Northeast, saw Massachusetts, and there in a little dot near Boston was Salem.  And I knew I found the location I had been looking for.

Being the historical fiction person I am, when I settled on Salem as my location I knew I had to incorporate the Salem Witch Trials somehow.  I did a few Internet searches and read some general information.  Then I went to my local university library at UNLV and found books about the witch hunts.  One of the most important books I found about the era, one that helped me a lot with understanding the era, was The Salem Witch Trials: A Day-by-Day Chronicle of a Community Under Siege by Marilynne K. Roach.  When I’m researching for a historical novel, I take a lot of notes, and I take them by hand because I absorb the information better that way. While I’m taking notes I imagine my characters in that time and place so I could get some sense of what would happen to them in that era.  What would a conversation between James and his father look like in 1692?  How would Elizabeth feel when the constable showed up at her door ready to arrest her as a witch during the hunts?  As I write the scenes I have my notes right next to me so if I need to recheck some facts the information is handy.

I hadn’t visited Salem when I wrote Book One in the trilogy, Her Dear & Loving Husband. But by the time I started writing Book Two, Her Loving Husband’s Curse, I thought it was time I saw the town for myself.  I’m so glad I went. Being in Salem gave me an understanding of the place I couldn’t get over the Internet. It’s a small, walkable place, Salem, but being there gave me extra insights—a Salem FYI. There is a quietness, a calm in Salem that I can’t associate with any other place I’ve been.  It might be a New England thing, or a Massachusetts thing, or a seaside thing. But people are different there. They smile at you.  Say hello.  The coastline along the bay is beautiful, scenic, the bay stretching out into the expanse of the Atlantic Ocean, the trees along the coast adding green to the blue of the water. There are the little boats chugging and bobbing in the waves, caught in the mud at low tide. Those are things I wouldn’t have been able to write about without visiting Salem. 

One of the reasons I love writing historical fiction is because I enjoy the research. I’m fascinated by history, the Salem Witch Trials in particular, and researching is my opportunity to learn about these important times in more depth. 

About Meredith Allard
Meredith Allard has taught creative writing and writing historical fiction workshops at Learning Tree University, UNLV, and the Las Vegas Writers Conference. Her short fiction and articles have appeared in journals such as The Paumanok Review, Wild Mind, Moondance, Muse Apprentice Guild, The Maxwell Digest, CarbLite, Writer's Weekly, and ViewsHound. She is the author of the Loving Husband Trilogy, Victory Garden, Woman of Stones, and My Brother's Battle (Copperfield Press). She lives in Las Vegas, Nevada. Visit Meredith online at

Find Meredith on Facebook Twitter & Google+

About Her Dear & Loving Husband

James Wentworth has a secret. He lives quietly in Salem, Massachusetts, making few ties with anyone. One night his private world is turned upside down when he meets Sarah Alexander, a dead ringer for his wife, Elizabeth. Though it has been years since Elizabeth's death, James cannot move on.
Sarah also has a secret. She is haunted by nightmares about the Salem Witch Trials, and every night she is awakened by visions of hangings, being arrested, and dying in jail. Despite the obstacles of their secrets, James and Sarah fall in love. As James comes to terms with his feelings for Sarah, he must dodge accusations from a reporter desperate to prove that James is not who, or what, he seems to be. Soon James and Sarah piece their stories together and discover a mystery that may bind them in ways they never imagined. Do vampires and witches live in Salem? Will James make the ultimate sacrifice to protect Sarah and prevent a new hunt from bringing hysteria to Salem again?

Part historical fiction, part romance, part paranormal fantasy, Her Dear and Loving Husband is a story for anyone who believes that true love never dies.

Get your copy on Amazon here!  Want to read an excerpt? Click here!

Thanks for stopping by!

Mina B.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Insecure Writers Support Group: Faith

Insecure Writers Support Group is on for September! Special thanks to Alex for doing this monthly meme.   I don't know how he does it.  Oh, wait.  He does have some help this month: Chemist Ken, SL Hennessy, Michelle Wallace, and Joylene Nowell Butler!  Thanks guys!  Don't forget to visit our awesome IWSG helpers.  Oh, and use the hashtag, #IWSG.

I made a ton of progress last month finalizing my book, Blessed Blood, for publication.  I don't have a date yet but soon.  Every time I feel I get closer to finalizing this project another set back happens in life.  

What's frustrating for me is these life mishaps throw off any momentum I've gained.  Its not like I have to start over from scratch, but it's irritating just the same.  Sometimes when this happens, I start feeling extremely insecure about my book.  Or frankly any other project I'm working on.  The good news is now I have an automatic retort when such pessimism attacks me.  What's that?  Well, whenever doubt hits me hard, I tend to yell back these words:
"Have some fu**ing faith, would ya?"

Believe it or not it works!  I think that's my positive takeaway this month.  Apparently, now I can argue with myself at will whenever I have doubt.  I'm slowly learning how to deal with these pestering insecurities.  Isn't that a good thing?

How are you learning to deal with your insecurities this month?   Any tricks you want to share that don't include talking to yourself?