Friday, January 31, 2014

Kindle Weekly Deals~ Week of 1/25-1/31

"Speak" by Laurie Halse Anderson- YA, coming of age~ Price drop to $2.99!

"Unchained" by J. Lynn- NA, urban fantasy~ Price drop to $1.99!

"Finding Release" by Silvia Violet- M/M, paranormal romance~ Price drop to $0.99!
"Sh*t My Dad Says" by Justin Halpern- Humor, memoir~ Price drop to $2.99!

"The Coincidence of Callie & Kayden" by Jessica Sorensen- NA, contemporary romance~ Price drop to $1.99!

"A Perfect Blood" by Kim Harrison- Adult, urban fantasy~ Price drop to $1.99!

"Everything I've Never Had" by Lynetta Halat- NA, contemporary romance~ Price drop to $0.99!

"The Winter Witch" by Paula Brackston- YA, paranormal/historical fiction~ Price drop to $1.99!

"Froi of the Exiles" by Melina Marchetta- YA, fantasy~ Price drop to $1.99!
"Legend" by Marie Lu- YA, dystopia~ Price drop to $2.99!

Check back next week for more deals!! 

Cover Reveal Blitz: Dannika Dark - Six Months

Six Months
(Seven Series, bk #2)
By Dannika Dark


April Frost is a compassionate young woman with a steady job and ambitious goals. But the harder she runs away from her past, the more it threatens to destroy her. When three strangers enter her life, April is forced to face her demons and it’s a battle she may not win.

Private investigators in the Breed world are men who take risks, and Reno Cole is no exception. As a Shifter, he’s expected to control his inner animal. But lately his wolf has been venturing dangerously close to the city, and he’s about to discover why. When Reno is reintroduced to a family friend, the attraction is immediate. April captivates him with her secretive eyes and resilient spirit. She’s also in trouble, and despite the fact she’s a human, Reno can’t turn his back on her.

April is caught between two worlds: One that threatens to bury her dreams and another that could fulfill them. Can she trust the wolf at her door and find the courage to overcome her demons?

Release Date:
March 25, 2014


There’s a buzzing sensation when you have chemistry with someone. It’s like there are invisible threads connecting your bodies and igniting into sparks, and the residual pulse bounces back in shock waves, growing stronger with each second.
I felt that with Reno. He stepped so close to me that I remembered how good it felt when he’d held me in his arms. The animalistic look in his eyes captured me like he was a predator and I was prey. He felt it too. I could tell by soft breath he took before he spoke.
“I've always liked hazel eyes,” he said. “Yours look like a sunset over sea-green waters.”
I hit pause. This was a scene I’d be replaying in my head for weeks to come, and I didn't want to ruin the moment by saying something inane. I let him graze his thumb across my mouth. He pulled my lower lip down just enough that his thumb glided across the fleshy inside. Then he rolled his wet thumb across my lip, making what seemed like a casual gesture become the most intimate moment I’d experienced with a man outside of sex.
Staring into Reno’s chocolate eyes up close was like riding on that motorcycle. Intense, sexy, and addictive. When I felt his hand leisurely traveling down the curve of my back, my icy walls began to melt and I warmed to his touch.
I waited for him to make another move, but it never came. He looked at me like something unattainable—the same way I coveted the expensive perfume bottles behind the display counter, or the chocolate macadamia nut cookies at the gourmet shop.
I whirled around and he captured my wrist, gently tugging me back. “Something wrong with the way I touched you?”
“It’s nothing,” I breathed.
But Reno didn’t let go. He stepped closer and lifted my chin. “Did you want me to kiss you?”
Reno grinned. “Liar.”

About the Author

This is the segment where you learn a little more about who I am, so here's what I can tell you:  I drink copious amounts of vitamin water placed precariously close to my laptop while writing. These are two healthy habits I have no intention of breaking. I'm a transplant living in the south, but I was born in the 70's to a military dad who moved us around the world.

When I'm not writing (which is all the time), I'm hunting down Indie music, watching movies, reading, eating Tex-Mex, discovering new ways to humiliate myself bowling, and burning up my laptop battery on the Internet. I have a relaxed, easy-going personality and don't like drama. I live with a cat who thinks she is a dog, or a goat (she eats plastic, so I'm not sure which).

Throughout my life, I've had insomnia. Counting sheep never worked and eventually I would imagine those sheep were the sole source of food after an apocalyptic battle where only thousands survived. I made up stories in a futile attempt to bore myself to sleep. The problem was, I got so wrapped up in my "head stories" that I would continue them through the following nights, changing it up each time to make it more exciting. Eventually, I started writing my ideas down - creating short stories, and then I discovered my love for poetry.

It's almost embarrassing how many spiral notebooks and stacks of paper I have of poetry and lyrics.

Another passion: digital art. I design all my book covers, marketing, and series art. I'm a very visual person and pursued photography as an avid hobby for many years.

I am not a YA author (I feel like I have to state this only because I've had a few people ask), but I think it's wonderful there are so many books available to teens in Urban Fantasy and Paranormal.

I am finally doing what I have always wanted to do: giving my characters a pulse through writing full time. I focus on adult urban fantasy romance, but I don't like labels and I enjoy blending genres to break out of the confines of predictability.

But it's what I love to do.


You can stalk, I mean find Dannika here: 


Presented by

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Author of the Month - Edmond Manning - Finale and Super Special Announcement!!!

Welcome to the grand finale of 

our month-long celebration for 

January's Author of the Month

Today is all about King Mai, the 2nd book in the Lost and Founds series,
and a Super Special Announcement at the end.

From the blurb:

Adopted from Thailand and never one to fit in with the local bubbas, life has been rough around the edges for Mai Kearns, even before he came out of the closet. Now, almost ten years past the torture of high school, Mai still can't catch a break: he and his parents stand to lose their beloved farm.

How will a “King Weekend” help change Mai’s fate? What has narrator Vin Vanbly been up to for the four weeks he’s been sneaking around Mai’s hometown? At the urging of a ransom note from ‘The Lost Kings,’ Mai embarks on an impossible treasure hunt chasing mystic poetry, Fibonacci Hopscotch, ancient prophecy, the letter ‘x,’ and a confounding, penguin-marching army.

The stakes are high: if Mai fails, the Lost Kings will permanently claim him as their own. Finding the treasure may unlock the secret to saving his family farm. But can this angry farmer risk opening his broken heart before the weekend is over? Mai Kearns has 40 hours to get very, very curious in this second installment of The Lost and Founds.

And Edmond has brought us another exclusive excerpt. Thank you, Edmond!

*** Necessary Background ***

Here’s what you need to know: Irritating and enigmatic Vin Vanbly has challenged his weekend lover, Mai Kearns, to a bizarre treasure hunt: find one ear of corn in a town devoted to cornfields. Late Friday afternoon, Mai and Vin run through corn fields on the Kearns’ farm, searching for the one stalk. They’re been at it for a while and Mai is not having much fun. As part of the game, Vin charges Mai $20 for every instance he gets angry (Mai tends to get angry a lot). Vin is fond of storytelling tales about The Lost Kings and the Found Kings. He has already revealed that local farmer Mai Kearns might just be the King of Curiosity…

Ten feet further a thundering crack interrupts our pace, followed by a whooshing sound, and Mai’s vicious curses. I squeeze through cornstalks into his row to find him on his knees, clutching broken stalks in each hand. He says, “Goddamn it. I tripped.”

“Are you okay?”

On his knees, he brushes the dirt off his hands. “No, I’m not. I’m not spending my whole goddamn weekend running around my own fucking cornfields.”

“You broke a bunch of corn,” I say meekly.

He stands, keeping his back to me and props the broken stalks against their neighbors. He’s penned in on three sides, corn touching both his shoulders and me standing immediately behind him. I feel his seething before I hear the strangled anger in his voice.

He says, “I don’t care if this treasure hunt is a metaphor. I’m not spending my entire weekend running through cornfields. Do you know the last time I had a weekend free from chores? This goddamn weekend’s not even free. In exchange for milking chores, I promised a kid from 4-H a ride to the school homecoming dance next month, him and his girlfriend. I have to pick them up, like their fucking chauffeur.”

I want to comment snarkily on this but not now, not now. Something big is exploding right in this moment. Some big rage. Say nothing, Vin.

He won’t turn to face me. I stand close, allowing my presence to be felt without actual touch. Heat radiates from him. It’s tricky to know when to touch someone who’s furious. Too soon, too intimate, and you inflame the rage, cross a boundary. Yet, I could deescalate this if I figure out the right way to touch him. Hands on shoulders? Hug?

I don’t know what to do. I can’t tell what is needed. Shit. What do I do?

Breathe, Vin. This moment will tell you. Breathe and listen. First pillar of kinging—stay present. Second pillar—follow the man. Follow and lead, follow and lead. Let him show you where to go next. He’s quivering, whole body vibrating, he’s so mad. He—he needs to be contained.

Okay, okay. I think I got it.

I pounce immediately, locking my arms around his front, pinning his arms to his side, making him my prisoner.

 After three seconds, Mai’s surprise is met by the urge to fight back. He cries, “Let go, you asshole.”

His fury is real and requires no verbal encouragement. He bucks backward and forward to catapult me, and I squeeze tighter. He half-spins in both directions, but we’re constrained by corn everywhere and instinctively he won’t hurt it. He thrashes me further, swearing, calling me a fucker, an asshole, a cocksucking asshole, a goddamn fucker, and a fucking asshole. I protect myself from his sharp elbows and the possibility of a well-placed backward kick right into my balls.

With effort, I say cheerfully, “For all that angry profanity, I’m charging an even $100. Totally a bargain for you, given how much you enjoy the word asshole.”

This enrages him further and he throws his back into it, lifting me off the ground for a second, only a second, until I regain the leverage. He’s strong and furious, two powerful advantages, but I love him, so that makes me more powerful. He throws his head back hard, almost nailing mine. I had been waiting for that killer move. I know how to fight dirty.

I cannot underestimate his power. For a wiry guy, he’s nothing but muscle. As long as I don’t fight back, I won’t vomit. I won’t get sick. This is just me hugging him, loving him during a rough moment. But it’s starting to feel like a real fight—and I get sick around violence.

Help me, kings, help me. I am scared of this. Please, help me stay focused on loving him, containing him. I need your help to be strong for him, my one true king.

His fighting grows wilder, the darker passion finally unleashed, the beast. If I play that this is almost funny, that may help escalate his rage. I’ve got to end this quickly—my stomach is rumbling. I deliberately kick a cornstalk next to my foot and hope despite his passion he hears the loud crack.

I say, “Oops, now I owe you $20.”

I break another one with my boot. “Whoops. $40.”

He screams, “I hate you.”

There! Good. Good. At last the dragon breathes, the fire exposed. We got there. Now, time to end this.

I say, “You love the corn.”

He continues to fight, but he must have heard the words exploding from his mouth, and something changes in his thrashing. Maybe he realizes the severity of what he said, maybe the demon is spent for now. Maybe, maybe, maybe. Who cares? I don’t need to know the answer. His body speaks to me in a language undeniable. I don’t require answers. I must follow his signals, and now, lead him back into the light.

I say, “You love the corn. You love the corn. You love the corn.”

My inflection changes each time, growing less hard as he revs down, and eventually I cross over into a softer, intimate tone. We stand together panting hard, naked upper bodies slick with sweat, my arms still locked tight, and the shadows around us crawling along the dirt.

I peer at the ground over his left shoulder and discover nothing extraordinary, no big rocks, no sign of what tripped him. Good, because this could hurt.

I jam my left knee into his so his leg buckles, and I use his lost balance to yank him downward, pulling and turning us so he lands on top of me, me slamming the ground first to cushion him.

Fuck, that fucking hurts. Goddamn it.

He bounces in my arms, but grabbing him so tight meant I could jerk my head away so his skull did not connect with my jaw.

Fuckity fuck. That fucking hurts! Despite no visible rocks, it’s still hard earth and slamming myself into it was not my best idea. Do not vomit. This was not violence, this was an act of love. Do not vomit.

We both exhale extra hard, the wind firmly knocked out of us. Dirt puffs rise around us in clouds.

He says, “Assho—”

The need for oxygen overtakes his need to swear, so we lay gasping until a new silence binds us. I turn us both to the right, and dirt fills our lungs, forcing us to work harder. Facing us inches away at full attention stand the pale circular stalks, pale green with sunlight not reaching this close to the ground in a while, yet they remain ready to march in single file. I release my grip. He’s not going anywhere. I clear my throat. Cough twice. I fucking hurt, and the inside of my mouth tastes coppery like blood. I think I bit my cheek.

Do not think about blood. Start talking.

I clear my throat and in a rasping breath say, “King Jimbo the Bruiser loved metalworking, woodworking, and knitting—he loved anything utilizing his hands. He didn’t care much for sports except basketball because he loved the ball’s pounding impact while dribbling. He made friends by storming up to a man and demanding, ‘Who the fuck are you?’ Then, he waited for the answer, the real answer beyond name and occupation, the sad and powerful truth that flowed from a man’s heart. Sure, he intimidated some. But if you knew a king lacking confidence, you sent him to Jimbo. The Bruiser King might sit in the grass with his arm around your friend’s shoulder, sometimes saying nothing, sometimes talking real quiet until eventually both men started laughing at the sheer idiocy of not believing in your own immense power.”

Sweat pours from me to Mai, and him to the earth. We’re losing daylight. Shit. I should be further into this story by now. Well, I will switch around the story sequence. That works. Come back around to catch up the other parts.

Uh oh. Now there’s an ant crawling along my back. An ant or a horribly legged bug.

Gross. Gross.

I must keep my voice steady. “Jimbo the Bruiser loved sculpting and digging tunnels. He excelled in bluntness yet spoke with tact. Despite his rambunctious nature, Jimbo possessed a shyness and always refused public speaking. Still, he would plead his heart earnestly before crowds of Found Kings if he thought it might help out a buddy.”

Mai scoffs. Or coughs. Can’t tell.

Oh God, I can feel it crawling on me. I can’t brush off the ant without disturbing our new peace, hard won after the big fight. My stomach is settling down, so I must get over it, right now. Pretend it’s rat whiskers. Rat whiskers. I can handle rats. Ants freak me out. Think rats.

“The Bruiser King’s devotion to friends defined him, therefore it surprised no one when he rode off to search for buddies who had accidentally become Lost Kings. After a time passed, many Found Kings realized they could no longer remember the Bruiser King’s true name, and they grieved deeply, because this meant that man, whoever he was, now numbered among the Lost Ones himself. Many Found Kings became lost in this same way, searching for lost brothers. Much hope had rested on the Bruiser King’s broad shoulders, because Found Kings speculated that his brute strength might shock men into remembering who they were always meant to be.”

Mai breathes.

The ant’s gone. Thank God. I kiss a sweat bead on his shoulder, taste the salt, and begin to relax.

“One day, men throughout the vast kingdom realized they could remember the Bruiser King’s true name was Jimbo. That could only mean one thing—Jimbo the Bruiser was a Found King once again! Kings came running from every direction, miles around. They discovered Jimbo leaning against a Corinthian column at the marble eastern gates, chomping a red pepper. Hordes of men crowded him, hugging him, clasping his shoulders, asking over and over, ‘Who found you? Who found you?’ Jimbo laughed his big-chested laugh, and said, ‘This motherfucker,’ tossing the pepper straight up in the air, which was caught by his wiry companion reclining atop the pink-streaked marble arch, the grinning King of Curiosity.”

His body jolts, just a little.

I say, “After that celebratory day, these two men were almost inseparable. Their friendship and what happened next became the stories of legend.”

I maneuver my trapped arm out from under him, giving him enough space so I can turn him onto his back. For the first time in many minutes, we make eye contact.

Ow, ow, ow. Speaking of bruiser energy, tomorrow I am guaranteed black and purple. I say, “Kiss me.”

His eyes harden, our recent conflict not easily forgotten.

“Choice A, you stay mad at me, we argue about you quitting the treasure hunt, and fight more. Choice B, we’re over it instantly. No explanations, no apologies. We drag our asses off the ground, keep running this field, and I talk more about the renowned friendship between King Jimbo and the King of Curiosity. You’re going to reveal your decision through a kiss. Show me which you want, A or B, using your lips. Choice A, kiss me angry. Choice B, show me your forgiveness.”

His eyes reflect confusion for a moment, and I would love to know what thoughts race inside him right now. How can we possibly move on without explaining his saying, “I hate you?” I’m so happy he said that, what a perfect reveal. After all, he doesn’t hate me.

“Let’s go. Kiss me, Kearns.”

He leans up and his lips touch mine with tenderness, similar to exploring a bruise on a friend’s shoulder, trying to gauge how his touch is received. His kiss continues with more insistent pressure on his side, still soft, but exploratory, hesitant. ‘Welcome me,’ his lips say. ‘Show me I am welcome.’

I do.

Our kiss evolves into the loving version of our intense struggle moments before, more pressure, more insistent. We battled. We survived. And through this kiss, we relive it, retell the strange story, a rippled pond’s reflection of that anger.

Once our tenderness completes itself, I drag myself to my knees, using the cornstalks to guide me upright. I extend an arm to him and he grabs my forearm, yanking himself up. Jesus, I’m too old for this shit; my body can’t take this abuse. I’m almost thirty. What was I thinking, throwing myself onto the ground? I’m lucky I didn’t dislocate my shoulder again.

I stretch my arms gingerly, checking for damage. He surveys the mess around us, cornstalks he broke moments ago and our sweaty, grimy bodies. He says, “I’m covered in dirt.”

Crumbles of earth stick to his left side, extending down his left leg. I’ll fuck with him. I take a step back and bend as if touching my toes. I rise with two handfuls of soil and toss them underhand to his upper chest. He bats them away in surprise but with no effect as he coughs through a cloud. Brown flecks stick all over him.

Now you’re covered in dirt.”

He laughs his woodpecker laugh, which makes me laugh.

How about that? He didn’t get angry.

When we both regain our breath, we gather the broken stalks and take off down the row, eager to finish before our solar deadline.

Welcome, King Jimbo. Restore your best friend.

It’s time to raise the army.

Buy it!!

Edmond can be found on Facebook. You can also email him. 

The ever so compelling Huggstibles has used his own special brand of magic to persuade Edmond to share FIVE supah-sekret secrets about King Mai with us. Beware, there be spoilers.
1. Each of the books in this series (well, the first six anyway) are a homage to a world religion. King Mai honors Buddhism. Very few discovered the Christian connection in King Perry so in King Mai I decided to be less subtle. Vin actually makes the direct connection himself, explaining to Mai, “Loving curiosity is the quality which drove Prince Siddhartha to escape his palace.” In Buddhist mythology, Prince Siddhartha leaves his kingdom and discovered humanity’s suffering, suffering which transformed him into Buddha. In my novel, the same is true for Mai. For him to save his farm and reach his true kingship, he must leave his farm see the suffering out in the kingdom of DeKalb, There he discovers an uncomfortable truth about his former classmates: their suffering is his suffering. All are connected.

Another important aspect of Buddhism is meditation. Vin spends chapter after chapter teaching Mai to meditate. Of course, the two men don’t practice a standard sitting meditation—they run through corn fields. Mai goes through the five stages a novice endures when beginning meditation.

Stage 1: Start and quit. Shortly after starting in chapter 2, Mai quits. After Vin teaches Mai how to breathe deeply, to find the deeper breaths, Mai finds more space inside himself and begins their “corn meditation” again.

Stage 2: Everything comes out. Meditating can unlock your unconscious mind and suddenly everything pours out with no filter: To Do lists, memories from third grade, where you left your winter hat, your promise to call back a friend. It’s a common meditation experience and can drive a new meditator absolutely bonkers. Mai experiences this in Chapter 2. It gets worse for him the longer he “meditates.” By Chapter 4, he starts hallucinating.

Stage 3: Feelings go Boom. When sitting with a brain that’s overwhelmed and has no filters, intense feelings often emerge. Repressed rage. Sorrow. Big sadness. The very thing you were working so hard to ignore bubbles right to the front, demanding to be felt. In fact, many new meditators quit because of Stage 2 and Stage 3. They get frustrated they aren’t feeling as calm as all the people look on Yoga magazines. In Chapter 3, Mai yells at Vin, “I hate you!” Where does that big feeling come from? Meditating.

Stage 4: It stops sucking. By Saturday morning (Chapter 10), Mai Kearns has a new perspective on this form of meditation. He likes it. He loves it. The sun on his face, running the corn, the miraculous green of life. Vin even comments on this new attitude: “Yesterday, Mai loved the corn. Today, the corn loves him back.” Stick with meditation and suddenly you find yourself opening up to greater space inside you. The big feelings pass. The insanity of all those thoughts, no longer caged also no longer demanding full attention.

Stage 5: The Breath of Life. By chapter 12 (right before Saturday’s sunset) Vin notices the change in Mai: “He explodes out of his row with giddy enthusiasm. ‘Smells great out here, doesn’t it, Vin?’ Hands on his hips, staring right into the sun, he seems happy and proud. His tee boldly proclaims he needs a hobby but I think he might have already found one. I’m not used to seeing joy so free in him.” Mai has learned to meditate.

2. I grew up in a farm town and my heart goes out to the plight of small farmers. My cousins are farmers and I used their last names in the King Mai epilogue (Ziller, Ernesti) to honor their many years of serving Queen Earth and providing food for the world.

3. I attended college at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Illinois. During my years there, I went to many Corn Fest celebrations, and I still have a 1994 Corn Fest t-shirt which reads: GOD, WE NEED A HOBBY. I love DeKalb. I haven’t been back in many years but I remember corn fields as far as the eye could see.

4. I was so enamored writing about DeKalb in this book that I ended up with extra scenes that had to be cut. Vin and Mai didn’t get to visit some key places I wanted them to: the DeKalb Confectionary, the NIU campus, the Elwood House and a restaurant called Tom & Jerry’s. Mmmmmm. Best gyros in DeKalb. In the Tom & Jerry’s scene, the restaurant managers comes to the table and threatens Mai by saying, “You’ll never find your mortgage. We’ll never let you get it back.” I loved Mai getting threatened by the manager of Tom & Jerry’s, but alas, the book was too long.

5. Before I sat down to write any of King Mai, I knew the basic outline of the story. Not the plot details (like where the corn stalk would be hidden), but I had decided the king in Book 2 would honor the Lost Kings in an annual tradition that very few people understood but nevertheless, lovingly participated in. Early in writing this book (before finishing Chapter 2) I wrote the Epilogue. The whole book flowed backward from the Epilogue, which I revised probably 100 times before it was juuuuuuuuuuuuust right.

For the finale, Edmond is giving away one Kindle copy of King Mai to three lucky winners. May the Kings be with you!

And now, without further ado, Edmond's Super Special Announcement, exclusively on our blog:

Didn't you sometimes resent J.K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter series?

She created this fantastic world that sucked us in and made us care about potions class, an old geezer named Dumbledore, and bewitched furniture. But then we had to wait two years for the next installment. Two years.

C'mon, woman, give us a fix!

I had always wished she provided a tasty tidbit between novels, like a Harry Potter short story. I’m a slow writer, so between king novels I'm hoping to provide you with a tasty tidbit.

Roughly six months after the last book release (which hopefully is roughly six month before the next full novel), I will make chapters available from the sixth book in the series, King Daniel.

I know, I know.

It’s messed up. But Vin Vanbly's tale is odd and the telling of his stories must also reflect this oddness. Just go with it. Part of the grand adventure.

The release schedule:

King Perry (first book) – February, 2012

King Daniel, chapters 1-3 – October 2013

King Mai (second book) – July, 2013

King Daniel, chapters 4-7 – January, 2014

??? (third book) – 2014

Who is the king in Book 3? After reading King Daniel, Chapter 7, you will know. I hope you enjoy meeting Daniel and exploring the world of the Found Kings in 2013, the year this story takes place.

I’m delighted to announce here on My Fiction Nook that the King Daniel chapters, 4-7 are NOW available! Yup…they’re available for download. You can get them from


See the other Edmond celebration posts:

Day 1
Day 2
Day 3

We had a total blast with our first author of the month. Thank you, Edmond, for playing along, for taking the time to create awesome special posts and amazing Huggstible images, and for being our special guest this month.

And thank you to all the readers, who've commented and visited and supported our new feature. See you soon!

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