Blood Stained Tranquility by N. Isabelle Blanco Blog Blast & Giveaway!

Blood Stained Tranquility The Rise of the Szolites- Part Two  By  N. Isabelle Blanco 

Release Date: 27th March 2014
Available from AmazonKoboBarnes and Noble, and TWCS PH

Summary: 
The wheels of destiny are spiraling out of control quicker than even the gods can keep up. They all thought they knew what war was like—but have no idea how bad things are about to get. In the continuation of the Szolite series, two of the most dangerous powers in the Universe will be unleashed, threatening to push two fated beings apart.
A normal human girl. . .
Evesse Salazar never imagined that a violent end to her already difficult life would be just the beginning. After being thrown into a vortex, shredded apart, and killed, she is reborn as something more. Something she might not be able to manage. If that weren’t enough, she awakes newly mated to the last being in the Universe she ever would have chosen.
Now, with no other option, Eve must come to terms with her powers, her past, and her mate before he loses control of what might just be uncontrollable.

 

A god with a monster locked inside. . .
For over eleven thousand years, Zeniel, God of Tranquility, has done everything in his power to keep his other half, the God of Vengeance, from breaking free. A single glance from Mavrak is all it takes to kill those deemed guilty. The wraiths under his command can tear thousands to shreds in an instant, no matter how small their crimes. Zeniel knows he must remain at peace to keep Mavrak at bay, but he’s rendered helpless with one look into the eyes of his mate.

The longing for Evesse is enough to rip the demon out of its cage, and with the Gods on the verge of a cataclysmic war, Mavrak has every intention of gorging on both his mate, and the vengeance he so desperately needs.

Author Bio:
N. Isabelle Blanco was born in Queens, NY (USA). At the age of three, due to an odd fascination with studying her mother’s handwriting, she began reading and writing. By the time she’d reached kindergarten, she had an extensive vocabulary and her obsession with words began to bleed into every aspect of her life.
An avid reader in her teens, her fascination with Japanese anime eventually led her to the universe of fan fiction, which became her on-again, off-again hobby for the next ten years. During that time she amassed a following of fans that, by her own admission, she would never be able to live without. It was those fans who encouraged her to step beyond the fan fiction realm and try her talent in the publishing world.

N. Isabelle Blanco now has three novellas and two full-length novels under her belt, and spends her days working as an author, web programmer, marketer, and graphic designer. Her free time is spent with her “spawn,” as she calls her son, brainstorming for his future career as a comic book illustrator.

Connect with N. Isabelle Blanco on: 

Other novels by N. Isabelle Blanco:

 
 
 
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2nd Prize- Paperback copy of Blood Strained Tranquility
3rd Prize- e-book copy of Blood Strained Tranquility

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Blog Tour: Under These Restless Skies by Lissa Bryan

Under These Restless Skies 
By 
Lissa Bryan 

Available from AmazonKoboBarnes and Noble, and TWCS

Summary: 
 
Will Somers has always thought himself unlovable. When he encounters a creature of myth and magic, he seizes the chance to finally have a wife and family of his own. Emma is a selkie—one of the immortal fae-folk of the sea—bound to Will by the magic of her kind, and eager to learn about life on land. She has to learn to adapt quickly to human customs, because Will is headed for the court of Henry VIII, to serve as the king’s fool. It’s a glittering, dangerous world, where a careless word can lead to the scaffold and the smallest of gestures is loaded with political implications. Anne Boleyn is charmed by Emma’s naïveté and soothing selkie magic and wants Emma for her own fool. Can Will protect his newfound love from the dangers that lurk in every shadow? Circa regna tonat: around the throne, the thunder rolls.

Author Bio:


Lissa Bryan is an astronaut, renowned Kabuki actress, Olympic pole vault gold medallist, Iron Chef champion, and scientist, who recently discovered the cure for athlete’s foot . . . though only in her head. Real life isn’t so interesting, which is why she spends most of her time writing.






Connect with Lissa Bryan on: 

Other novels by Lissa Bryan

 
                                                  Ghostwriter                The End of all Things
Short stories by Lissa Bryan
                                             Tales From The End   The Golden Arrow and The Butterfly

Coming soon The Land of the Shadow 

 
 
 
 

~Legend of the Selkies~

Undine by Arthur Rackham
The legends of the selkies, or silkies, as they’re sometimes called, originated in Ireland, Scotland, and Iceland. They were the immortal fae-folk of the sea.

According to the legend, selkies were shape-shifters. In the sea, they took on the form of a seal. When they came to land and shed their magical pelt, they could shift to human form.

The most well-known selkie tale is The Selkie Wife. Will’s grandmother tells him one version of the tale in Under These Restless Skies:


“I
will tell you the tale of the Selkie Wife. Once, a fisherman of the North Sea
happened upon a girl dancing in the waves by the shore. Naked, she was, for
selkies do not know they should be ashamed of their nudity. He found her pelt
tucked into a crevice in the rocks.”

“Her
pelt?”

“Aye.
Selkies have a magical bit of fur. When they don it, they change to their true
form.”

Will
tried to remember other tales he had heard. “Are they not seals?”

“Nay,
not a seal. A selkie, the fae-folk of the sea. Though they may look like a
seal, they are different. They are creatures of magic, immortal, gentle, and
good of heart. There are tales of them saving drowning sailors by swimming them
to shore, and of bringing to the poor the gold they find on the sea floor.”

Will
steered her back to the story. “He stole her pelt? Whyfore would he do that?”

“When
their pelt is stolen from them, they are bound to he who took it, trapped in
their human form on the land until it is willingly returned to them.


“The
fisherman took the selkie maiden’s pelt, for he was enchanted by her on sight.
Beautiful, selkies are, when they are in their human form. The women-folk are
said to be gentle and kind, excellent wives and mothers. The men-folk are
said—” She looked down at Will’s young face and smiled slightly. “Well, the
men-folk are said to know how to make a woman happy. A lonely maiden or an
unhappy wife may summon a selkie when she sheds seven tears into the sea.

“The
fisherman was a widower with children in need of a mother, so he bound the
selkie maiden by taking her pelt, and brought her home to care for his
children. And a good mother she was, for selkie women love children, even
land-children not of their own.

“The
fisherman kept his Selkie Wife’s pelt locked in a chest, and kept the key
‘round his neck, even as he slept. But even if the trunk had been unlocked, she
could not have taken it back. It must be given back to her, willingly, or she
cannot touch it.”

“Was
she happy as the fisherman’s wife?”

His granddame
shook her head. “The fisherman was a cold man. He would not allow his wife to
swim or frolic and play as selkies are wont, nor said he any loving words to
her. She tried to make him love her, for selkies have powers to that end, but
his heart was hard and empty.

“The
Selkie Wife sat by the window, watching the waves every day, longing to return
to her true home and slowly, she began to pine
 away. Like all of the fae-folk, the selkies
are immortal, but their hearts are fragile. Sadness can cause them to wither
and fade.”

“If
they are unhappy, they can
die of
it?” 
 

“Aye,
but they are spirited creatures and it takes little to lift their hearts. A
kind word, a smile, a swim in the sea. Some selkies come willingly to the land
to marry when they fall in love with men on the land, and they are happy. But
their first love will always be the sea.

“One day, the fisherman forgot the key and his children found it. Curious, they unlocked the trunk they had never seen opened, and the Selkie Wife asked the children to give her the pelt inside. Willingly, they did, for they knew not what it was.

“And
when they handed it to her, the Selkie Wife raced down to the shore, shedding
her gown as she did. She donned the pelt and changed into her selkie form to
dive into the waves. Her husband’s children saw her leap and play in the sea,
and though they had not known what she was, and would miss her sorely, they
knew she was home where she belonged and rejoiced for her.

“The
fisherman did not. He was enraged when he found his wife gone. For weeks, he searched
the waves for her, but when a selkie’s pelt is returned, she cannot meet with
the man who took it for seven years.”

“Why
is that?”

His granddame
shrugged as she took another wad of wool from the basket and began to briskly
rake it with the combs. “I know not. ‘Tis just the enchantment. She was hidden
from his eyes, even if she stood before him. Still, the fisherman searched for
any sign of her. And then, one day, he came upon a selkie man, the Selkie
Wife’s true husband. And the fisherman slaughtered him to spite his wife.”

Will
grimaced. “Did she take her revenge on him when the seven years had expired?”

“I
have heard two versions of the tale. One says that she still roams the waves, mourning
for her lost love, and the other says she takes her revenge on fishermen when
she comes upon them. Any man who drowns is said to be her doing, that she
became a sea-witch, calling up storms to avenge her love.”

“What
do you think?”

She smiled softly, and under her wrinkled face Will saw the ghost of the charming young lass she had been when she first heard the tale. “Methinks she grieves, but does no harm. They are said to be kind and gentle creatures, and ‘tis not their nature to hurt others. Still, ‘tis sad to think of a woman who shall mourn her lost love forever as she roams the cold waves.”

Blog Blast for Broken: Book Two in The Edge of Darkness Series ~ by Vanessa Skye

Broken 
Book Two in The Edge of Darkness series
By 
Vanessa Skye 

Available from AmazonKoboBarnes and Noble, and TWCS


Summary: 

A mother is murdered in an apparent robbery.

A young woman is raped and beaten in a home invasion.

Chicago Detective Alicia “Berg” Raymond doesn’t believe in random crime and is certain both cases are more than they seem—but can she trust her instincts, or is she too distracted by the feelings she has for former partner and new boss? For Berg, the need for justice burns deep and fills the emptiness where therapy and relationships fall short.
She’s certain the husband knows more than he’s willing to admit, but the trap to catch the killer is the loophole that sets him free.

The rapist is caught and sent to prison, but when Berg gets closer to the family devastated by his depravity, their behavior doesn’t add up.



As Berg fights to prevent another murder, she crosses the line between hero and villain—and there’s no turning back.

Author Bio:

Vanessa Skye has always had a love of words and spent her school years writing poetry, speeches, and fictional essays.
After completing a Bachelor of Arts in print journalism and studying psychology at Charles Sturt University, Vanessa got a job at Australia’s largest publisher of regional and agricultural news and information, Rural Press, where she worked as a journalist in the central west of New South Wales for four years.
Thousands of stories later, Vanessa decided to move back to Sydney and try her hand at public relations while studying for a master’s degree in communication.
Skip forward a few years and Vanessa was once again joyfully studying various psychology subjects while managing a Sydney public relations firm. Enthralled with examining the motivations behind people’s actions, Vanessa realized what she really wanted to do in life was combine her love of words with her fascination for human behavior. So Vanessa quit public relations to begin the significantly more impoverished life of a professional writer.
Inspired by a recurring dream, Vanessa wrote her crime fiction debut, The Enemy Inside, which challenges the concept of justice, asks if the need for vengeance sometimes justifies murder, and explores whether you can ever heal from childhood abuse. Broken is her second book in this series. In her spare time, Vanessa wrote a short story, The Piece, which was published in February 2012, by Dark Prints Press as a part of the ‘One That Got Away’ dark fiction anthology.

Vanessa now works as a freelance writer, lives in Sydney’s northern beaches, and tries to immerse herself in salt water at least once a day.


Praise For Broken:


I have been diagnosed with clinical depression/situational depression years ago. It is very important that I mention this prior to reviewing “Broken” by Vanessa Skye. . . as it is very pertinent to where my mind was just prior to starting this novel. I had a depression breakdown about a week before starting this book. Little did I know, when requesting this book for review from Net Galley, that I’d be reading a book that reflects my soul at current state. 

Biggest plus of this book was the creative use of song lyrics before the start of each chapter. So poignant, so stark, so dead on. The way the author writes about depression the lives within the main character is so gut twisting, I too found myself hard to breathe.

“Berg”, the main character, is a detective who is so deeply whittled with wounds from childhood it literally incapacitates her every aspect of life: Living, Breathing, Loving and accepting Love, Communicating, Sleeping. She’s a wreck of a woman… She’s BROKEN. However, the pain and abuse from childhood makes her ONE HELL OF A DETECTIVE. Her senses are sharp. She sees things her male counterparts cannot. She has the highest closure rate on cases. 

However, your detective skills become questionable when she tries to juggle love and her heart, her past, a new partner that is relentless about sleeping with her, and an ADA who’s a total narcissistic bitch. The characters in the book are so well written you either hurt for them, hate them, or love them.

Vanessa Skye is a strong, poetic, articulate author. Broken is a second part novel, from the “Edge of Darkness” series. I have not read the first novel, “The Enemy Inside.” The author did a fine job of creating a second book that reading the first one is not required. This is a great stand alone book, which has areas of reflection into the first novel. I would love to read this book, as I’m highly attracted to the main character, her flaws and the author’s ability to bring it all to life.

I am so very impressed with this book. It gripped my innards and ripped them out, little by little, each time Vanessa wrote about the deep, sinking, killing feeling depression has on a person.

*** Goodreads review

Connect with Vanessa Skye on 

Other books by Vanessa Skye

The Enemy Inside 





So we wanted to sit down with Vanessa and give her readers a little look at just how she likes to work…
This is what she had to say.

Question:
Discuss the aspects of your research style, and how you push yourself to keep writing?

Vanessa:
Sometime I wonder why I picked crime fiction to write, there could not be a genre more outside my field of expertise, or one more research-heavy. But as all authors will tell you, the story wanted to come out as is, so I just had to go with it!

While the first book in the Edge of Darkness series, The Enemy Inside, and the subsequent second book in the series, Broken, are both crime fiction, they both required different research.

The Enemy Inside was very much forensics-driven, as many of the clues the reader is given happen either at the crime scene, or around the autopsy table. My background is in journalism and public relations, and while I’ve always loved a good cop/crime show, my experience in this area was zero! (You might be interested to know that much of the stuff on shows like CSI is amazingly accurate, however, they do take some artistic license for some of it. I mean, if they had to wait around weeks for DNA to come in, it wouldn’t make for much of an exciting show, would it?).

My process of writing is that my first draft is a bare storyline only. Only later do I go back and fill in the descriptions and details. So after I wrote the first draft of The Enemy Inside, I thought I was basically done. Little did I know that the real work was about to begin!

I found that every aspect of the storyline had to be researched and checked meticulously, from the way the autopsies are done, to the way evidence is collected at a crime scene and chain of custody is preserved. And while Google may well be a great tool for some things, I really couldn’t rely on it for those kinds of details. So Amazon became my friend. I ordered textbook after textbook and read and re-read them continuously. I used to drag one of them ‘Fundamentals of Criminal Investigation’, which is the size of two large house bricks, around with me to cafes all over Sydney as I was finessing the details in The Enemy Inside. The baristas would see me coming lugging my back-breaking books and start laughing heartily as they made my caffeine infusions, and they often asked what an introverted, mother-of-two was doing writing about such nasty things as bondage, sex, and violence!

But the result is that it is all very much true-to-life; I have taken very little artistic license in it beyond the fictional story itself. Of course, the research ended up taking twice as long as the actual writing. It’s just as well I didn’t know this when I started to write The Enemy Inside after having the inspiring dreams, as I probably would have taken a sleeping pill and told my brain to shut the hell up.

Because I’m apparently a glutton for punishment (or just an idiot) Broken is different again. Instead of forensics, it takes a criminal justice system focus as it is more of a psychological thriller. So I read many textbooks about the American criminal justice system (I am Australian, so I couldn’t even draw on the knowledge I have of my local justice system, as the two are quite different—yet more evidence to be placed on the ’Vanessa is an idiot’ pile).

In both instances, the rough storylines I had outlined in the first drafts had to be changed to fit in with the reality of the system in which I am writing. But in all cases, this lead both books to exciting, interesting and dangerous places and the books are far better for it.

As for motivating myself to write, I treat it like I would any other job. I’m on maternity leave at the moment from my journalist position, so I make sure that I set aside time to write while the baby is sleeping. I always do this, even if I don’t feel inspired, because creativity flows from the doing, not from the thinking about doing! If I waiting around to feel ‘inspired’ I wouldn’t have written four books.

The Enemy Inside and Broken are both available from Amazon, Kobo, Book Depository, Booktopia and on the TWCS website. Check out Vanessa’s blog at http://www.vanessa-skye.com

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