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Release Day Blitz Only a Duke Will Do by Tamara Gill

Excerpt:

“I’ve lost him. And I love him still.” Her voice broke at the realization.

Her mother shushed her, pulling her into an embrace. “I know, darling. I know you

do. But there is nothing for it now. You will have to return with us to Dunsleigh.”

Isolde thought of all she had lost, not just Merrick, but her future, their plans.

Their trip away to the Continent, Paris, Rome, and all the delightful places in between

that they were going to visit, crumbled in her chest like her heart. “He’s really going to

marry her, isn’t he?” Even saying such a thing sounded absurd, and yet it was the truth.

The truth as she would know it from tonight onward.

“Yes, he is.” Her mother’s face was a mask of concern and pain. “I’m so sorry,

darling. You did not deserve this.”

Isolde strove to calm down before her sobs woke her sisters and they started with

their meddling questions. Her body hiccupped for breath; her eyes, so swollen and sore,

hurt when she blinked.

“Come, you must sleep.” Her mother helped her stand, and Isolde didn’t fight her

decree. Tiredness would succeed over her mind and, for a sweet moment, she’d forget

what had transpired this night. It was enough to make her lie down and try.

She settled under the blankets. The maid knocked on the door and her mother

ushered her into the room, taking possession of the glass of whisky and a cold compress.

Isolde downed the drink in one gulp, grateful for the burning amber liquid and the

cooling cloth against her eyes.

The tears started afresh when the comforting embrace of her mother wrapped

around her, pulling her close and holding her as if to never let her go. Not since she was a

child had her mother acted in such a way, and some of the despair left her, knowing she

had the support of her family.

She would need them in the months to come.

She took a shuddering breath. How could a night once filled with so much

excitement and anticipation twist into such despair and horror? Rolling onto her side, the

ring Merrick had given her pressed into her cheek.

She held out her hand and looked at the cluster of five round diamonds, each of

them encased in a bed of silver and sitting on a band of gold that was etched into a

leaflike pattern. The ring had been Merrick’s grandmother’s, and it had been the most

beautiful gift Isolde had ever received.

But no longer. Now it represented a fractured circle of trust, pulled apart and

unfixable.

She yanked it off, unable to throw it no matter how much she longed to. She

reached over and placed it on the cabinet beside her bed, looking at it as it twinkled

prettily under the candlelight. The ring and its beauty were as fickle as its owner.


 
Only a Duke Will Do
To Marry a Rogue Series
Book Two
Tamara Gill
Genre: Regency Historical Romance
Publisher: Entangled – Select Historical
Date of Publication: February 20, 2017
Number of pages: 300+
Word Count: 80,000
Cover Artist: Erin Dameron-Hill
Book Description:
Without a Season, Lady Isolde Worthingham captured the Duke of Moore’s heart at a country dance. But on the eve of her wedding, a scandal that rocked the ton and sent her fleeing to Scotland alone and unwed, leaves her perfectly planned future in a tangle of disgrace and heartbreak.
Merrick Mountshaw, the Duke of Moore loathes the pitiful existence he hides from the ton. With a scandalous wife he never wanted, who flaunts her many indiscretions, life is a never-ending parade of hell. When the one woman he loved and lost returns to London, he knows he can no longer live without her.
But vows and past hurts are not easily forgotten. Love may not win against the ton when a too proper Lord and Lady play by the rules.
About the Author:
Tamara is an Australian author who grew up in an old mining town in country South Australia, where her love of history was founded. So much so, she made her darling husband travel to the UK for their honeymoon, where she dragged him from one historical monument and castle to another. A mother of three, her two little gentleman in the making, a future lady (she hopes) and a part-time job keep her busy in the real world, but whenever she gets a moment’s peace she loves to write romance novels in an array of genres, including regency, medieval and time travel.
Visit Tamara’s website at http://tamaragill.com/
Join Tamara’s Newsletter at http://bit.ly/188eyFF
Friend Tamara on Facebook http://on.fb.me/1Fu0JPL
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Review Tamara’s books on Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/TamaraGill

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Release Day Blitz Poison My Pretty

 

Excerpt:

Skylar’s twin sister Mads called while I was driving to the convention

center. “Are you really going over there? I can’t believe they’re going to continue

this pageant.”

“So you heard about the murder?”

“Yeah. Skylar told me last night when she got home. It’s awful.”

“Yes, but you know how it is. The show must go on! Surely you can’t be

that surprised.” I was only beginning to understand the importance of these

competitions to their participants, and I could picture pageant moms dragging their

glitzed-up toddlers over the dead bodies of fallen competitors. The way zombies

climbed over each other to get to the top of the pile in movies—only prettier.

“Are they sure it was a murder? She didn’t just have a heart attack or

something?” I could hear the anxiety creeping into Mads’ voice, and I didn’t blame

her. Our little town was supposed to be safe. Murders didn’t happen here. That was

the sort of thing that happened in the city across the bridge, not in our sleepy little

bedroom community.

“That’s what they said, Mads, but I don’t think you need to worry. If it was a

murder, you can bet it was personal. Certainly not the doin’s of a mad man or a

serial killer. If Heather Morgan was murdered, it was by somebody who knew her

and had something to gain from her death. This was no a random act of violence.”


Poison My Pretty
Amity Allen
Genre: Paranormal Cozy Mystery
Date of Publication: February 15, 2017
ASIN: B01MYNTAE8
Word Count: 50,000
Cover Artist: Rachel Olson at No Sweat Graphics
Book Description:
As soon as Poppy Parker turns 21, the star of a popular TV show about witch detectives discovers she has supernatural powers off the set as well as on. When the show is canceled, she returns home to figure out how to harness the magic brewing inside her.
Freaked out by these recent paranormal gifts, Poppy just wants to fit in, so when she’s asked to serve as a judge for the annual Bloomin’ Belles youth beauty competition she readily agrees.
But when the pageant’s snooty director drops dead and Poppy’s friend is arrested,
the former TV sleuth sets out to uncover the real killer, only to find…
the business of beauty can be deadly.
About the Author:
Amity grew up reading every mystery she could get her hands on, burning through everything by Agatha Christie in record time and wanting to be Nancy Drew when she grew up. After writing books in other genres for the past few years, she’s finally come home to her true love – cozy mysteries.
Amity and her husband live in L.A. (lower Alabama) with a houseful of teenagers and a half dozen pets. Besides books, Amity’s favorite things are football, needlepoint, fried shrimp, and sweet tea.
Sign up for Amity’s Book Club: http://eepurl.com/coqgxX
Text MYSTERY to 24587 for new release alerts.

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Chameleon by Zoe Kalo

 

Excerpt:

I cannot clearly say how I had entered

the wood; I was so full of sleep just at

the point where I abandoned the true path.

— Dante Alighieri, Inferno 1. 11-12

Chapter 1

Puerto Rico, 1973

Oak trees dripping with Spanish moss embraced us from both sides, but not enough to shield us

from the prison that would be my home for the next seven months. The high stone walls and neo-

Gothic bell tower loomed over us as my stepfather drove his Mercedes through the spiked iron

gates and into the sloping, curving driveway.

A spider of dread crawled up my back. Prison indeed.

I couldn’t believe it had come to this. The way things had blown out of proportion. I’d only

wanted to contact my dead father. Ask his forgiveness.

My mother reached for my hand from the front seat without turning around to look at me.

I stared at her perfectly polished red nails and the glittery square cut emerald on her ring finger.

Her fingers flicked, silently pleading for my attention, but I was frozen inside. Her hand

retreated.

I stared at the convent, my eyes studying the pointed arched windows, the worn, age-blackened

stones. The place looked haunted. Perfect for my state of mind. What was my mother thinking?

Something moved behind one of the windows. A face. For an instant my pulse raced at the sheer

paleness of it, at the two dark holes that made up its eyes.

“What are you looking at?” Sara, my six-year- old half sister, asked.

I pointed. “A girl.”

She followed my line of vision. “Where?”

“There. High up. In the window.”

She dipped her head so she could have a better look. “I don’t see anything.”

I felt a shiver, but not from the cold. It’s white. It’s watching us.

Then the car moved too close to the building, and the face vanished from view.

“Is this your new school, Paloma?” Sara asked.

I nodded. Sara was the child, female version of my stepfather. Her bottomless dark eyes,

framed by velvety lashes, stared at me with misery. “I don’t like it,” she whispered, grabbing my

hand.

“It’ll be okay,” I whispered back, and gave her hand a little squeeze.

“You promise?”

“I promise.”

“Well, here we are,” Domenico said in his strong Castilian accent, stopping the car in

front of the entrance. He climbed out and opened the door for my mother. Then he proceeded to

take out my suitcases from the trunk.

My mother was silent. She stepped out like a wooden mannequin, her eyes shimmery

with unshed tears.

I climbed out, followed by Sara, the gravel crunching under our shoes. The early morning

air was cool and a blanket of mist still lingered—not surprising, since the convent was on the

outskirts of El Yunque, the island’s rain forest. More Spanish moss hung from the oak trees and

rippled in the breeze like long, shivering memories. I could smell the dew on the leaves and the

rich perfume of moist earth, redolent of open graves.

I glanced at the ominous clouds. “Beautiful morning.”

An ongoing distant hum resonated all around us. One, two beats passed, before it struck me:

Waterfall.

Something within me shut down—or exploded, I couldn’t be sure.

I shut my eyes for a second, wiping out memories of chilled water searing my lungs.

I repeated the eighth multiplication table in my head. This always helped.

“After you,” Domenico said, interrupting my thoughts.

I wanted to loathe him. Tried to, anyway. I could see what my mother saw in him: a powerfully

charismatic, handsome man with the infinite skill to make people do his bidding. My mother,

with her small delicate features and petite frame, looked invisible beside him. A mere spectre.

But that was just a façade. I knew better.

The big oak door opened and a nun clad in black habit and a wimple came down the steps

to greet us.

Sara wrapped her arms around my waist. Her gesture both comforted me and heightened

my anxiety. Nuns in habit made me think of great black birds.

“Bienvenidos,” the nun said. Like my stepfather, she also had a Castilian accent. “I’m

Madre Estela and I’m second in charge to Madre Superiora. You must be Señor and Señora de

Aznar.”

They exchanged small talk. Madre Estela sounded polite enough, but she didn’t offer to

shake hands with my parents, which I found strange. Maybe nuns weren’t allowed to shake

hands. I wouldn’t be surprised. I noticed the wedding band on her ring finger. Married to God.

Absurd.

“You must be Paloma,” she said tonelessly.

“Yes,” I said. Wasn’t it obvious? I didn’t know what else to say.

The cross on her chest caught my attention. It had a crucified Christ on it and I noticed

the thorns cutting Christ’s forehead, the little drops of blood glistening on His fragile body.

“Welcome to our school, Paloma.” Her critical gaze scrutinized my makeup, my tight

jeans. “I’ve heard much about you.”

I didn’t miss the hint of cold disapproval in her voice. I wasn’t sure how much my parents had

complained about my behavior, but considering I had been kicked out—well, actually, kindly

asked to leave—from my previous school in the middle of October, it couldn’t be good.

“Are you ready to resume your senior year of high school?” Stress on resume.

“I can’t wait,” I said. There was no point in being nice—or pretending to be. That just

wasn’t me. I felt miserable and couldn’t hide it. Besides, I could tell from our short exchange that

she’d made up her mind not to like me long before meeting me, and I had the sinking feeling that

no matter what I said or did, her opinion wouldn’t change. I had already been stamped in her

Inquisition book, tagged a criminal.

Madre Estela’s stony eyes moved to Sara. My little sister’s arms clutched my waist even

tighter. From the nun’s expression, I could tell she was wondering if I had infected Sara with

whatever plague ailed me. She dismissed us and turned back to my mother and stepfather.

“Madre Superiora is expecting you in her office. Let’s not keep her waiting. Don’t concern

yourselves with the suitcases. Someone will come for them shortly.”

They thanked her and followed her up the steps.

“I don’t want to go in,” Sara said.

“It’ll be okay,” I said. I glanced at the window. I wanted to see the pale face again. But there was

nothing.

A drop of rain hit my cheek and I wiped it off. Then I held Sara’s hand and together we

walked up the steps and through the arched doorway.

I felt my throat closing up.

Seven months.

Seven months wasn’t that long, was it? Besides, Thanksgiving break was just around the corner.

Six weeks, to be exact. I had already marked my calendar. I couldn’t wait. I would go through

the motions, no need to make friends that I’d never see again. When you get close to people, you

end up getting hurt.

 



Chameleon
Zoe Kalo
Genre: YA Gothic/Multicultural
Date of Publication: February 15, 2017
Number of pages: 230
Word Count: 55,000
Cover Artist: Deranged Doctor Designs
Book Description:
An isolated convent, a supernatural presence, a dark secret…
17-year-old Paloma only wanted to hold a séance to contact her dead father. She never thought she would be kicked out of school and end up in an isolated convent. Now, all she wants is to be left alone. But slowly, she develops a bond with a group of girls: kind-hearted Maria, insolent Silvy, pathological liar Adelita, and their charismatic leader Rubia.
When, yet again, Paloma holds a séance in the hope of contacting her father, she awakens an entity that has been dormant for years. And then, the body count begins. Someone doesn’t want the secret out…
Are the ghost and Paloma’s suspicions real—or only part of her growing paranoia and delusions?
About the Author:
A certified bookworm and ailurophile, Zoe Kalo has always been obsessed with books and reading. Reading led to writing—compulsively. No surprise that at 16, she wrote her first novel, which her classmates read and passed around secretly. The pleasure of writing and sharing her fantasy worlds has stayed with her, so now she wants to pass her stories to you with no secrecy—but with lots of mystery. She lives amongst cats and books in Belgium, and is the author of the Cult of the Cat young adult fantasy series and the Retribution novella series for adults.
Sign up for her newsletter at www.ZoeKalo.com and receive her exclusive short story “Arkalla.”
Website and blog: www.ZoeKalo.com

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