February Updates

I’ve got a few updates for you all.  The first, in case you missed it, is that Forged by Flames is now out in Audio and whispersynced.  You can pick it up at your preferred retailer, but anyone who owns the ebook through Amazon can get the digital audio for $2.99.  For those who are wondering about Christmas with Dragons, Marguerite Gavin will start recording it next month so it will have a spring release (exact date to be announced).

The other big news is that the Dragon’s Breath Series is now back in Kindle Unlimited.  I just finished moving them into the program early this morning (which required me taking them off of the other retailers because Amazon requires exclusivity for enrollment), so those who have been waiting can now borrow the books.  This is the first time Forged by Flames and Christmas with Dragons will have been in KU!

On a final note, the cover model photo shoot went well for the Dark Destiny Series (the first two books featuring Cori and Bartol).  I should have a cover to reveal within the next couple of weeks and some behind-the-scenes pics to show as well.  Stay tuned for more on that!

Forged by Flames is now available!

I know you’ve been waiting patiently for the third installment of the Dragon’s Breath Series, and I’m happy to announce that Forged by Flames is finally here!  It won’t be going into Kindle Unlimited, but you can find it on all the major retailers (see links at the bottom of the post).  You might also consider joining my Facebook fan group where readers following my novels can hold discussions about them, have opportunities to win book related prizes, and there will be a Q&A session with me coming up soon.  You don’t want to miss out!

Here’s the link to it:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/1657437984566674/

All the other details you need to know about the new release are below.  Hope you enjoy the book!

forged-by-flames-ebook-cover-mediumSUMMARY

Ever since dragons invaded Earth, Bailey Monzac and other survivors have had to adjust to a new world order. But a long-lost threat is re-emerging that could once again destroy everything they’ve been struggling to rebuild—for both man and beast. There’s an artifact out there that can control dragons, and many would seek to possess it for ill intent.

It’s going to be up to Bailey, her dragon shape-shifter ally Aidan, and their friends to embark on a long and arduous quest to recover the relic before it falls into the wrong hands.  Along the way, relationships will strengthen and the bonds of friendship will be tested.  For there can only be one outcome if they wish to survive this journey.


RETAILER LINKS

AMAZON US     AMAZON UK

AMAZON DE     AMAZON AU

AMAZON CA    AMAZON FR

KOBO     NOOK     ITUNES

First three chapters of Forged by Flames and a publishing update

As I mentioned in my last post, I’m running a little behind on getting through final edits.  It’s likely that I won’t be uploading Forged by Flames onto the retailers until sometime on Saturday (October 29th).  My apologies for the delay! For anyone who would like an alert once the novel is available, you can sign up for my release alert list here.  You are able to select which retailer/format you use so you’ll only get an email when the book is available with your preferences.

In the meantime, I’m providing the first three chapters of the novel for you to read while you wait.  Hope this helps 🙂

 

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Chapter 1

 Bailey

I clutched the steering wheel and searched for a threat, any threat. The last gasps of autumn were approaching now that November was almost over, which meant dragons on the west side of Norman, Oklahoma had been out in force searching for enough food to get them through the coldest days of winter when they’d be stuck in their dens semi-hibernating. Though there were still plenty of cows and wildlife in the nearby countryside outside of town, some of them had developed a taste for humans.

“Where in the hell are they?” I glanced over at my slaying partner, Conrad, who sat in the passenger seat of the truck. He held a loaded crossbow with the front aimed at the floorboard, ready to lift and shoot out the window if we came across danger. Conrad wasn’t flame-proof like me, but he could do some damage from a distance while I went after the dragons up close with my trusty sword. He’d been working out more too and building up his already toned muscles to give him that much more of an edge. The extra strength came in handy if he had to release a rapid succession of bolts or carry me to safety if I got badly injured during the fight.

The dark-skinned nineteen-year-old—wait, that’d be twenty since his birthday was two weeks ago—gave me a grim look. “You’ve killed so many of them, I’m willin’ to bet they’re hiding from you.”

I ground my jaw. “Only three this week and it’s Wednesday. I need to kill more.”

Conrad had no idea how much I needed it, considering the dark and deadly side of me was something I tried to keep well-hidden from my friends. Slaying was the only way to bring relief to the irrepressible instincts that drove me to attack dragons wherever I could find them. To a certain extent, I’d learned to control myself, but lately I hadn’t found many reasons to bother. The motivation to curb my killing desires had been for the sake of the red shifter dragons—some of whom I’d become allies with since they weren’t a threat to humans. I hadn’t seen much of them lately, though.

“Maybe we could address the big elephant in the room,” he said, arching a brow.

I stopped at an intersection and leaned forward in my seat, taking the opportunity to get a better look around for any fire-breathing beasts. “We’re in a truck—not a room.”

“You know what I mean, Bailey.”

I didn’t look at him or say anything. It was a topic I’d been avoiding for a while now.

“Ever since we rescued those kids you’ve been actin’ different. You’re all weird and cagey and shit. About the only time I see you smile is right after you kill a dragon.” Conrad ran a hand over his short tufts of hair that he’d started growing out recently. “Don’t think I didn’t notice this all started about the time Aidan stopped comin’ around.”

I stiffened. He wasn’t wrong, though Conrad wasn’t aware of the full story. No one knew that after we fought a major battle against the pure dragons at the Norman airport—to rescue a group of children and push the clan out of town—Aidan and I had met again later that night.

Fresh from battle and our blood still pumping, the attraction between us had been higher than ever. Aidan had also been working through his feelings because he lost his father—the pendragon—during the fight. They hadn’t been on the best of terms, which only made him feel worse. Alone in Aidan’s lair, we’d taken comfort in each other’s arms. It had been one of the most amazing experiences of my life, and the scariest.

Considering he was a shape-shifter, a rare breed among dragon-kind compared to the pure beasts that outnumbered them ten-to-one in the world, and I was a slayer born to slaughter all fire-breathing creatures, it probably wasn’t the smartest move on our part. Still, it was one of those moments I’d remember forever.

We’d grown close over the months he’d been training me to slay his enemies—the pure dragons—and I’d learned to trust Aidan despite my instincts. In his human form, he could be more civilized than half the people I’d met since D-day (the arrival of the dragons) six months ago. Despite that, a relationship between us couldn’t work. I’d been doing my best to accept that the same way I had to accept fighting dragons for the rest of my life. Slayers didn’t get sick or age. They always died in battle and usually before they reached thirty. Every day I survived was a gift. I had to do everything I could to get back to my family in Texas before my slayer heritage got me killed. Aidan was the key to doing that, and I needed to stop thinking of him as anything more.

“The new pendragon is keeping him away,” I said, pressing on the gas pedal. The truck jerked forward, and we continued our way north on 36th Avenue.

“Yeah, I bet he did after he found out about you.” Conrad paused and narrowed his eyes at me. “But do you think the pendragon suspects you and Aidan are getting a little too close?”

I jerked the wheel, almost sending us off the road. It took a moment to get the truck under control again. “What are you talking about?”

“You ain’t foolin’ me, girl. You’ve got that whole angry and bitter vibe goin’ on. That’s the real reason you started spending almost every day out here huntin’ dragons—to avoid thinking about what you can’t have.”

I tensed, realizing Conrad was right. For those first few weeks, after I last saw Aidan, I stayed at his lair most of the time until the need to hunt dragons overwhelmed me. It hurt not being able to see him. Then Aidan’s sister, Phoebe, came by and told me her brother had been sent far away to patrol their clan’s borders. I’d realized I needed to stop fantasizing that there could ever be anything serious between us. My family needed me, and I’d nearly allowed my emotions for a dragon shifter to make me forget about the people I loved. If not for the giant chasm running parallel to the Oklahoma border with Texas, separating me from my mother and step-father, plus a huge clan of pure dragons who wouldn’t be easy to get past, I’d have gone home already.

“I know it can’t ever work,” I said, shooting Conrad a look. “So I don’t want to hear another lecture.”

His eyebrow raised in disbelief. “But do you really accept it?”

“It doesn’t matter what I accept. What matters is I know what I have to do,” my voice came out clipped.

I didn’t want to talk about this with him or anyone else. The more I discussed it, the more it bothered me—and not just because of Aidan. There were still days where I woke up surprised the world was filled with dragons, and that I was expected to slay them. Never mind that I might have begun to fall in love with one of the damn beasts. My future was never supposed to be like this. I’d just finished college when the apocalypse began and had meant to return home to my parents’ ranch to help them run it. Then my whole life spiraled out of control on that fateful day back in May. The only thing I could do now was keep slaying the beasts that were ruining the world and work on getting back to my family.

Conrad was quiet for a minute. “Alright. I’ll let it go, but only cuz you look miserable enough without me making it worse.”

I snorted. “At least you’ve got someone you can care about openly.”

“Yeah, that’s true,” he said, smiling at the mention of Christine. We’d rescued her and her daughter after a tornado struck Norman shortly after D-day. That was the beginning of her and Conrad’s relationship, though they’d gotten even closer after we rescued Christine’s daughter, Lacy, from a dragon that had kidnapped her and a few other human children in town.

“It’s good you have somebody,” I said, truly happy for him.

“Thanks,” he replied, then frowned and looked away.

“What is it?”

He shook his head. “Nothin’. Let’s just find some dragons for you to kill.”

That was strange. Conrad usually didn’t keep anything from me, but I wouldn’t push him for now. The tone of his voice made it clear he wasn’t ready to open up about whatever was bothering him.

“Okay, but I’m here if you need to talk.”

He glanced at me. “Yeah, I know.”

In the middle of the road ahead, a middle-aged woman with long, brown hair streaked with gray appeared out of nowhere. I slammed on the brakes, jerking us forward in our seats as the tires screeched across the pavement. The truck came to a stop about twenty feet from where she stood.

“I’m going to kill her,” I swore, rubbing the side of my neck where the seatbelt had dug into my skin.

Conrad slowly removed his clenched fingers from the dashboard. “Not if I get to her first.” Continue Reading →

Updates on the Dragon’s Breath Series (now on all major retailers)

I’ve got a few updates for you all on the Dragon’s Breath Series.  First, it is no longer in KU (Kindle Unlimited), and I’ve just uploaded books 1 & 2 onto the other retailers (Nook, Kobo, and iTunes).  For those wondering, I don’t have any plans to put it back in KU in the near future.  If you are one of the individuals who has been waiting for the novels to be available outside of Amazon, you will find purchase links to the first book (Stalked by Flames) below.  Thanks for being so patient on this.

NOOK     KOBO     ITUNES

Next, I’m on the later stages of edits for Forged by Flames, but it is taking a little longer than expected to finish.  This is mostly because I’ve stretched myself a bit thin trying to get too many things done around the same time.  I’ve also had edits with the Kerbasi holiday story, cover and promo design stuff, forming the Facebook fan group, handling various correspondence from my publishers (I’ve got a French book release on the 28th and Dancing with Flames just came out in audio last week), and the list goes on.  It’s been more than a little hectic.

Having said that, I am getting close to finished.  If there’s a delay in publishing book 3, it probably won’t be more than a day or two.  This is just to give me some breathing room to make certain the novel looks good before I publish it for the masses. I will post another update sometime on Wednesday, and should I not be able to release it on the 27th, I will at least put up the first few chapters to read here on the blog so you can get started.  The actual book release would follow within a couple of days after that.

In addition to everything else, I am also participating in a Halloween Facebook party with a bunch of other UF authors.  While it starts on November 26th, my day for posting contests with prizes isn’t until the 30th (must have Forged by Flames ready before then!).

banner-for-oct-2016-uf-author-facebook-party

I have got some tote bags with the newest book cover on them, a pewter dragon figurine, and other awesome things I’ll be giving out.  Don’t miss your chance to possibly win some of these prizes and join the party.  Here’s the link:  https://www.facebook.com/events/172431569855039/

And that’s all for now.  I’m off to get some more work done!

Cover reveal for Forged by Flames

I am pleased to finally reveal the cover for the next novel in the Dragon’s Breath Series, Forged by Flames.  Those of you who joined my new Facebook fan group already got to see it yesterday and chat with myself and the cover model, but for everyone else this is it!

forged-by-flames-ebook-cover-promo-size

COVER ART– Jeff Brown

PHOTOGRAPHER– Josh McCullock

MODEL– Rahela Mahmood

You can add the book to your Goodreads TBR list here:  https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32593209-forged-by-flames

I am very pleased with how the design turned out.  Jeff Brown did a fantastic job with the artwork and making the cover look exactly like I wanted. He totally worked from scratch, though I did ask him to put a post-apocalyptic look to downtown Oklahoma City in the background.

The photo shoot went really well, too.  Below, you can see some behind-the-scenes pics with myself, the model (Rahela), photographer (Josh), make-up artist (Celeste) and her helper (Mauri).  It was a lot of fun.  We also got tons of images for future covers and promo art, one of which has already been added to my new website banner.  Another is currently running around as a Facebook ad some of you might have seen.  I personally designed the website banner and ad, though, so if you don’t like them that’s all on me.  I’m slowly getting the hang of Photoshop!

Note- The first photos in black and white were taken by the photographer.  The ones in color were taken by me on my phone.

behind-the-scenes-2 behind-the-scenes-3 Continue Reading →