Thursday, June 30, 2016

Interview with E.Z. Rinsky, author of Palindrome - Win a copy of the book!




INSIDE THE BOOK



Title: Palindrome 
Author: E.Z. Rinsky 
Publisher: Witness Impulse 
Pages: 384 
Genre: Mystery/Suspense 
Format: Ecopy/Paperback

Private Eye Frank Lamb's business is simple: He finds things. Be it the world’s hottest pepper seed in a South American dictator's safe or a pair of Italian art forgers sipping Prosecco in a Miami hotel room, he delivers the goods and collects his check, never with a smile. Work is work, and he doesn’t let it get in the way of the life he’s made for himself and his ten-year-old daughter, Sadie.

But when a staggeringly beautiful woman offers him a small fortune to find a cassette tape, curiosity gets the better of him. It contains, she explains, a recording her sister’s kidnapper made of her last three minutes on Earth. She conveniently fails to mention the unsettling effects the tape is rumored to have on listeners.

Frank takes the case, and enlists the help of reclusive tracker Courtney Lavagnino to pick up a trail that's been cold for five years. As their search leads them through a horrifying labyrinth of murder and madness, it becomes clear they're chasing much more than a memento.

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THE INTERVIEW

How has your upbringing influenced your writing?
 My psychiatrist used to ask me the same thing. Kidding. Suffice to say a lot of my sensibilities are thanks to my two brilliant, pretty hilarious parents. Also, that some readers may recognize subtle Jewish motifs in Palindrome.
What inspires you to write and why?
I never know how to answer this question. I think of writing the same way I think about eating. If I sat around waiting to be inspired to eat, we wouldnt be having this talk. I just wake up every morning and write, inspired or not.
What genre are you most comfortable writing?
So Palindrome, which is my first published book, is a mystery. And Im working on the sequel now which *spoiler alert* will also be a mystery. But writing mystery books is very arduous in a way other books arent. Everything has to be so, so tight. Sometimes it feels like youre doing a jigsaw puzzle that you designed when you were super drunk, but now you dont know if the pieces will actually end up fitting together in the end. Pretty soon Id like to write something that doesnt make me feel like Russell Crowe in A Beautiful Mind.
What are you most proud of accomplishing so far in your life?
I almost took a path in life that would have made me very unhappy. Just a few months before finishing a masters in econ, I was positive I wanted to sign up for the Wall Street grind. I distinctly recall reading a book called In the House of Money at one point. Im pretty proud that I avoided that path. It was a close call.
What do you consider the most challenging about writing a novel, or about writing in general?
Well for one thing you have to be compulsively, obsessively organized, and this is challenging for me because Im actually a really disorganized person in almost every other facet of my life. Maybe even more challenging is how many things you have to hold in your head at one time. The amount of moving pieces in a 350 page book is pretty astounding.
What inspired you to write your first book?
Rent.
Do you intend to make writing a career?
I do. But at one point I intended to make playing point guard for the Denver Nuggets a career, so well see.
Have you developed a specific writing style?
I hope so? Thats a tough question. I strive to make whatever Im writing fun and easy to read, even if the content is dark or serious. I hope Ive succeeded.
What is your greatest strength as a writer? 
I think my imagination. People always ask me how I come up with the crazy stuff I write. I really dont have a good answer for them.
What is your favorite quote, by whom, and why?
I once asked a friends great grandmothershe was 95 at the timeif she had any words of wisdom for me. She looks me dead in the eye and goes play the field. I think thats the funniest thing Ive ever heard. 

MEET THE AUTHOR

E.Z. Rinsky has worked as a statistics professor, copywriter and--for one misguided year--a street musician. He currently lives in Tel Aviv. More at ezrinsky.com
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Giveaway

Witness Impulse is giving away 3 print copies of the book!

Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • Three winners will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive a print copy of Palindrome
  • This giveaway begins June 21 and ends on July 15.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on July 16.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!

ENTER TO WIN!


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Cover Reveal: I Wanna Be Loved By You by Heather Hiestand


 

Inside the Book:



Title: I Wanna Be Loved By You 
Author: Heather Hiestand 
Release Date: February 14, 2017 
Publisher: Lyrical Press 
Genre: Romance 
Format: Ebook
For a young woman swept into international adventure, romance can’t be far behind…

The 1920s are in full swing when Sadie Loudon leaves her grandfather’s stodgy vicarage, and she dreams of the glamour and excitement she’s seen on the silver screen. But before she even begins work at the storied Grand Russe Hotel, she is ushered into London’s glittering nightlife by a handsome young businessman intent on introducing her to the pleasures available to a Bright Young Thing. Is it a fleeting romance…or something even more intriguing?

Les Drake is on the lookout for Bolsheviks when he encounters sweet, sexy Sadie. A British Secret Intelligence agent, Les has more experience with the seedy underside of the city than with innocent chambermaids, but he can’t deny that Sadie tempts him. Using her as part of his cover seems like a brilliant plan until the danger of his assignment threatens what has suddenly become a love he can’t bear to lose…

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Meet the Author:

Heather Hiestand was born in Illinois, but her family migrated west before she started school. Since then she has claimed Washington State as home, except for a few years in California. She wrote her first story at age seven and went on to major in creative writing at the University of Washington. Her first published fiction was a mystery short story, but since then it has been all about the many flavors of romance. Heather’s first published romance short story was set in the Victorian period and she continues to return, fascinated by the rapid changes of the nineteenth century. The author of many novels, novellas, and short stories, she is a bestseller at both Amazon and Barnes and Noble. With her husband and son, she makes her home in a small town and supposedly works out of her tiny office, though she mostly writes in her easy chair in the living room. She also writes as Anh Leod.

 You can visit her at http://www.heatherhiestand.com    
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Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Interview with Rachel Dunne, author of In the Shadow of the Gods

 

Inside the Book:

Title: In the Shadow of the Gods
Author: Rachel Dunne
Release Date: June 21, 2016
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Genre: Fantasy/Action Adventure
Format: Paperback/Ebook

A breathtaking talent makes her debut with this first book in a dark epic fantasy trilogy, in which a mismatched band of mortals led by a violent, secretive man must stand against a pair of resentful gods to save their world. Eons ago, a pair of gods known as the Twins grew powerful in the world of Fiatera, until the Divine Mother and Almighty Father exiled them, binding them deep in the earth. But the price of keeping the fire lands safe is steep. To prevent these young gods from rising again, all twins in the land must be killed at birth, a safeguard that has worked until now. Trapped for centuries, the Twins are gathering their latent powers to break free and destroy the Parents for their tyranny—to set off a fight between two generations of gods for control of the world and the mortals who dwell in it. When the gods make war, only one side can be victorious. Joros, a mysterious and cunning priest, has devised a dangerous plan to win. Over eight years, he gathers a team of disparate fighters—Scal, a lost and damaged swordsman from the North; Vatri, a scarred priestess who claims to see the future in her fires; Anddyr, a drug-addled mage wandering between sanity and madness; and Rora and Aro, a pair of twins who have secretly survived beyond the reach of the law. These warriors must learn to stand together against the unfathomable power of vengeful gods, to stop them from tearing down the sun . . . and plunging their world into darkness.
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The Interview

What are you most proud of accomplishing so far in your life?
It has to be getting published – I barely let myself dream it would happen at all, much less this early on in my life.

How has your upbringing influenced your writing?
I had a really great upbringing – I was always given the sense that I could do anything I wanted, so never being discouraged from the arts had a huge impact on me. My mom also had a veritable library, so I grew up valuing and loving books.

When and why did you begin writing?
I wrote my first story when I was about three: I dictated it to my very tolerant aunt and then added my own illustrations. I just haven’t stopped since then – writing and telling stories has always been a vital part of who I am.

When did you first know you could be a writer? 
I’ve always been writing, but it first occurred to me that I could make a career of writing back in middle school. We had an assignment to write a story at least two pages long, and most kids did that bare minimum. My story was twenty-six pages long, and my teacher pulled me aside after class to tell me I had talent, and that I shouldn’t give up on that dream. He was an aspiring writer, too, and I read his novel piece by piece over the rest of the school year and we spent a lot of time talking shop. He talked to me like I was more than just a kid with a dream—he treated me like a peer, like a fellow writer whose opinion he valued. That was when I realized writing could be a career, and that it was one I wanted. 

What genre are you most comfortable writing?
Fantasy for sure – it’s my favorite genre to read, and I have the most fun writing in made-up worlds. I’ve heard people say that it’s better to write outside your comfort zone, but I think writing in a genre you know well is actually very liberating – if you know all the old tricks, know what’s been done a hundred times before, you can figure out what you have to do to write something unique and different, mostly by already knowing what not to do.

What inspired you to write your first book?
My love of reading encouraged me to write my first novel when I was twelve – at that point, I figured I’d read enough good books that I could figure out how to put together a decent book on my own. I was very wrong: the novel was just a horrendous mish-mash of pieces stolen from all my favorite books at the time. I found characters I liked, methods of writing I liked, themes I liked, plots I liked – and wrapped all that in a very thin veneer of originality.

What do you consider the most challenging about writing a novel, or about writing in general?
Up until recently, I’ve always had a problem finishing a novel. I have a ton of half-finished stories that I abandoned for a shiny new story idea…which I then later abandoned for a different, shinier story idea… It’s still hard not to pursue every new idea that comes into my mind, but I’ve gotten good at writing down the idea in as much detail as possible, even a few scenes if there’s something really stuck in my mind – and then I put those in a folder and don’t look at them until I’m done with my current project.

Did writing this book teach you anything and what was it?
I learned the value of outlining while writing this book: with alternating points of view, an outline was practically a necessity. I’d always been a discovery writer rather than a planner, so by forcing myself to start planning and outlining, I’ve managed to become a sort of hybrid of the two methods. I give myself starting points or ending points for each chapter based on where I know the story needs to go, and then let myself find the path to or from that point while writing.

Do you intend to make writing a career?
Assuming I can keep managing my time well, I don’t plan to give up my day job anytime soon. Part of it is because I love my day job, but I’m also less productive if I have too much free time. Being a full-time writer would be nothing but free time, and so I worry I’d end up spiraling into failure. I plan to keep writing until I physically can’t anymore, but I’m also hoping to keep working for most of that time too.

Have you developed a specific writing style?
The part I enjoy most about writing is character voice, and so my style varies from character to character. For In the Shadow of the Gods, I have four character points of view, each with their own distinct voice – so, this time around, I suppose I have four specific writing styles! I have some writing quirks that carry though no matter the voice, but I hope I can keep changing my writing style as the character or the narrative demands.

What is your greatest strength as a writer? 
I can meet deadlines like nobody’s business.

What is your favorite quote, by whom, and why?
“Let us go then, you and I, / When the evening is spread out against the sky / Like a patient etherized upon a table; / Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets, / The muttering retreats” –T.S. Eliot, from “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”

I generally don’t like poetry, but “Prufrock” got under my skin and stuck there. I just love the vivid and unique imagery throughout, but especially in the opening lines. They always remind me that language can be used so well to evoke emotions, and that there’s power and beauty in words.

Meet the Author:

Rachel Dunne
Living in the cold reaches of the upper Midwest with her great beast of a dog, Rachel Dunne has developed a great fondness for indoor activities. For as long as snow continues falling in Wisconsin, she promises to stay inside and keep writing. Her first novel, In the Shadow of the Gods, was a semi-finalist for the 2014 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award, and will be published by Harper Voyager in June of 2016. Its two sequels will follow.  
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Cover Reveal: Stroke of Midnight by Andie J. Christopher


 

Inside the Book:



Title: Stroke of Midnight 
Author: Andie Christopher 
Release Date: January 10, 2017 
Publisher: Lyrical Shine 
Genre: Romance 
Format: Ebook

One night.

New Year’s Eve in Miami. Even workaholic Alana Hernandez can’t resist the call of the city, especially if it will get her little sister off her back. But a night of celebrating turns into a night of mischief when an alluring stranger catches her eye across the dance floor.

No names.

Former Navy Seal Cole Roberts isn’t looking for anything more than a good time in Miami. Since leaving the military and being betrayed by his former fiancĂ©e, he’s not interested in unnecessary complications. But the moment he sets eyes on the sultry beauty, Cole knows this night will be far from ordinary.

No going back.

Neither Cole nor Alana are looking for a relationship, so they strike a deal: One night. No names. No repeats. But things get complicated when their night of passion becomes something neither can walk away from.

  amazon  

Meet the Author:

I’m Andie J. Christopher and I write edgy, funny, sexy contemporary romance. I grew up in a family of voracious readers, and I picked up my first Harlequin Romance novel at age twelve when I’d finished reading everything else in my grandmother’s house. It was love at first read. It wasn’t too long before I started writing my own stories — my first heroine drank Campari and wore a lot of Esprit.

Although, I set aside writing fiction for a while, my love of reading romance novels stayed with me through college, law school, and multiple cross-country moves. During one long East Coast winter, I decided writing a book would be a good excuse to avoid braving the elements. It was love at first write. My heroes are dirty-talking alphas, and my heroines traded Esprit for Free People. (None of them would turn down a Campari, though.)

You can visit her website at http://andiejchristopher.com 
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Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Book Review: Kaitlin's Tale by Christine Amsden - Win a $50 Gift Card




Inside the Book:


Title: Kaitlin's Tale
Author: Christine Amsden
Release Date: May 14, 2016 
Publisher: Twilight Times Books
Genre: Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance
Format: Ebook/Paperback
Source: Author

Purchasing:



Kaitlin Mayer is on the run from the father of her baby – a vampire who wants her to join him in deadly eternity. Terrified for her young son, she seeks sanctuary with the Hunters Guild. Yet they have their own plans for her son, and her hopes of safety are soon shattered.

When she runs into Matthew Blair, an old nemesis with an agenda of his own, she dares to hope for a new escape. But Matthew is a telepath, and Kaitlin’s past is full of dark secrets she never intended to reveal.



I LOVED this book, love, love, loved it! I have been a fan of Christine and her novels for some time now, and with each book I read it is obvious that she hones her craft just a little more.

The Cassie Scot series has come to be one of my favorites, and vampires, well, any of you that know me know my love of all things undead (well, some zombies may be an exception). But knowing that one of the characters that grew on me in previous novels was a vampire in this one didn't sit well with me. How was I going to continue to like him when it was evident he was going to be a bad guy. Well, things aren't always what you may think at first.

The way the author is able to weave fantasy with reality is truly astonishing. While reading this book it is hard to remember that this is just made up, that is how in depth the characters and setting are. I can't wait to continue on with these books to see what Christine is going to do next. 




Meet the Author:




Christine Amsden has been writing fantasy and science fiction for as long as she can remember. She loves to write and it is her dream that others will be inspired by this love and by her stories. Speculative fiction is fun, magical, and imaginative but great speculative fiction is about real people defining themselves through extraordinary situations. Christine writes primarily about people and relationships, and it is in this way that she strives to make science fiction and fantasy meaningful for everyone.

At the age of 16, Christine was diagnosed with Stargardt’s Disease, which scars the retina and causes a loss of central vision. She is now legally blind, but has not let this slow her down or get in the way of her dreams.

Christine currently lives in the Kansas City area with her husband, Austin, who has been her biggest fan and the key to her success. In addition to being a writer, she's a freelance editor, mom, and foster mom.

Please visit her at http://www.christineamsden.com

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Giveaway

Christine is giving away a $50 Amazon Gift Card!

Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $50 Amazon Gift Certificate
  • This giveaway begins May 16 and ends on August 5.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on August 6.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!

ENTER TO WIN!

———————


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