March 01, 2024

Book Blitz ~ Their Shattered Hearts by Angie Cole

Their Shattered Hearts
Angie Cole
(Cardinal Creek)
Publication date: March 1st 2024
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

A story of love, loss, and redemption unfolds in the rustic charm of Cardinal Creek, Texas. Will Deluca, a stoic firefighter and ranch owner, bears the weight of his wife’s untimely demise. His world once filled with warmth, now echoes with the silent grief of his two children and the unyielding Texas plains.

Enter Anna Samuels, a heart that’s seen its share of sorrow. Leaving Missouri’s memories behind, she hopes to find solace and new beginnings in the small Texas town. As a dedicated palliative care nurse, she embarks on a mission to bring comfort to families grappling with illness. Destiny leads her to Rockin’ D Ranch, where her path crosses with Will, a man whose rugged charm and piercing blue eyes hide a world of pain.

Amidst the rolling hills of Cardinal Creek, Will and Anna find their lives intricately entwined, linked by a forgotten encounter from their youth. Anna’s arrival sparks a glimmer of hope in Will’s heart, inspiring him to fulfill a promise to his late wife: to create a sanctuary for children with autism. Together, they begin to weave dreams of a brighter future.

But shadows linger in the corners of their newfound happiness. Anna grapples with a dark secret that threatens to destroy the life she has built in Cardinal Creek. As Will confronts his own fears, he risks losing the one person who could help him heal. In the face of adversity, will they find the strength to conquer their demons and embrace a second chance at love?

In Their Shattered Hearts fate, passion, and dark secrets collide. Join Will and Anna as they journey through the complexities of the heart, learning that sometimes, the path to happiness is paved with the courage to face the ghosts of the past.

Goodreads / Amazon


Will Deluca: “Every star in the Texas sky reminds me of what I’ve lost… and what I still hope to find.”

Anna Samuels: “Healing others is my calling, but healing my own heart? That’s a journey I didn’t expect to take.”

Will Deluca: “They say time heals all wounds, but here in Cardinal Creek, it’s love that does the healing.”

Anna Samuels: “In every patient’s smile, I see a piece of my grandfather’s legacy… and a part of my heart healing.”

Will Deluca: “I never thought I’d find love again. Turns out, it was waiting for me in the last place I expected.”

My journey as a romance author is deeply rooted in my personal experiences of love, loss, and resilience. The profound impact of the losses I have endured, including the passing of my grandparents and my parents, has shaped my perspective on life and love.

My own love story is one of healing and finding joy after heartache, and it mirrors the themes I explore in my novels.

As a survivor of grief and a believer in the power of love, I channel my experiences into crafting stories that resonate with the complexities and triumphs of the human heart. My writing is a testament to the idea that love can emerge from the most unexpected places, offering hope and healing. The one thing that can be learned from grief is that it's a very personal experience and isn't the same for every person.

Website / Facebook / Instagram


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Cover Reveal ~ Cursed Wolf by Sophie Ash

Cursed Wolf
Sophie Ash
(Howling Death MC)
Publication date: March 29th 2024
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance

If the sweet veterinarian finds out I’m a werewolf, she’ll bolt.
But she’s my fated mate, and the beast in me is howling for a taste.

I’m the wolf she hit with her car and nursed back to health. I’m also the gruff biker who saved her from her creepy boss.

She has no idea man and beast are one and the same.

We’re from different worlds, but fate’s thread ties us together. She thinks we’re just dating, but she’s meant for me. And as I get to know her, I can’t get enough.

The more time we spend together, the more my wolf howls to claim her. Soon, I won’t be able to hold back the animal within me.

Fate has cursed me with an impossible choice. Reveal my wolf to a human and risk the safety of my pack.

Or force her into my world with a mating bite, and bind our fates forever.

Whether she likes it or not.

This book features fated mates between a human woman and a protective wolf shifter hiding a big secret. Each book in Howling Death MC is a standalone with a guaranteed HEA!

Add to Goodreads / Pre-order

Sophie Ash is a USA Today bestselling author from Northern California, writing paranormal motorcycle clubs with plenty of bite, as well as passionate retellings of myths and folklore.

When she's not writing, she's probably reading, gardening, vacuuming up cat hair, or enjoying a craft beer in the sun.

Get a free standalone novella when you sign up to Sophie's newsletter!


Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / TikTok / Newsletter

February 29, 2024

Blog Tour ~ Walkin' The Dog by Chris Lynch

I am thrilled to be hosting a spot on the WALKIN’ THE DOG by Chris Lynch Blog Tour hosted by Rockstar Book Tours. Check out my post and make sure to enter the giveaway!


About The Book:


Author: Chris Lynch

Pub. Date: March 12, 2024

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

Formats: Hardcover, eBook

Pages: 240

Find it: Goodreads

“Lynch is back and better, smarter, and funnier than ever.” —Jacqueline Woodson, National Book Award Winner

A boy learns how to be a friend from man’s best friend in this funny and moving middle grade novel about humans being able to change and dogs changing us from acclaimed author Chris Lynch.

In a family of strong personalities with very strong points of view, Louis is what his mother lovingly calls “the inactivist,” someone who’d rather kick back than stand out. He only hopes he can stay under the radar when he starts high school in the fall, his first experience with public school after years of homeschooling.

But when a favor for a neighbor and his stinky canine companion unexpectedly turns into a bustling dog-walking business, Louis finds himself meeting an unprecedented number of new friends—both human and canine. Agatha, a quippy and cagey girl his age always seems to be telling two truths and a lie. Cyrus, a few years his senior, promises he’s going to show Louis how to be a better person, whether Louis wants him to or not. And then there are the dogs: misbehaving border terriers, the four (possible stolen) sausage dogs, the rest of Louis’s charges, and a mysterious white beast who appears at a certain spot at the edge of the woods.

Dogs and human alike all seem to have something they want to teach Louis, including his menacing older brother who keeps turning up everywhere. But is Louis ready to learn the lesson he needs most: how to stop being a lone wolf and be part of a pack?


1. The Inactivist


Things are supposed to go a certain way, and this is not that way. He’s a commercial fisher, and so should be out of  the house for several hours already by the time I wake up.  When I get myself up, which I’m perfectly capable of doing.

“Louis,” he says, leaning way down close and misting me  with coffee and bran muffin and fig and orange breath. Fortunately, I love my father and his relatively healthy diet. Later,  he smells different. Fisherfolk, yeah?

“I need you, son.”

This, along with the darkness, and the absence of my  mother from the house, is a bit unsettling.

My dad doesn’t need me, or anybody else, really. At least  he’s never said so before. He’s very seafaring that way. It  soothes me, his unneediness.

It’s technically not true, anyway. He doesn’t need me;  somebody else does. But Dad needs that somebody else, so  there you have it.

“I’m short a man today,” he says, “and Old Man Dan is the only guy around who knows what he’s doing and is also  available to give me an honest day’s work.”

Old Man Dan is Mr. Evans. He’s one of those guys you  hear about who have millions of “fish stories” about the one  that got away and the biggest thing that ever swam the sea.  Old Man Dan retired from actual shing without retiring any  of the fish stories, or the scent. They say he’s got a thing called  trimethylaminuria. They also say he reeks. Kind of guy my dad  avoids in the street or the supermarket aisle on account of  those stories more than the smell, so he must be in serious  need of Dan’s assistance on this occasion if he’s prepared to  listen to that stuff all day.

“Okay, can I ask why you’re telling me this, Dad?” I ask,  without really wanting to ask it.

“Because Dan says he can only go out on the boat today  if he can get somebody to look after Amos.”

Oh no.

Amos. Dan’s multi-breed mongrel, who seems less like a  real dog and more like a cross between a portly dingo and a  badger. Everybody but Dan refers to him as Anus, because of  the smell, which reaches you about twenty-four hours before  you’re anywhere near him.

“Oh, Dad . . .”

“Please, Louis. The poor thing can’t be alone for more  than a few hours at a time, ever since Dan’s wife passed away.  You understand, of course. . . .”

Ah, Dad. I mean, I don’t think he did it on purpose, but  he did it. He can hardly be unaware that his wife, my mother, is in the hospital, as she has been for too many days the past  year. He cannot be unaware, but he also cannot have meant to  use that as a point of leverage in this conversation.

His fractured face tells me as much. He caught himself  off balance just as badly as he did me.

“I’ll do it, Dad,” I say, brushing past him both impatiently  and affectionately as I climb out of bed. He squeezes my arm,  I squeeze his, and we both look away.

When I come out of the shower and make my way sluggishly to the kitchen table, it’s still not quite sunrise. My little  sister, Faye, is eating a bowl of cereal by the dim, warm glow  of the stovetop light. It’s a scene I’m not used to, and one I  find unexpectedly pleasant. Faye can be a bit harsh under the  full glare of day.

I’m thirteen, and Faye is eleven months younger. Irish twins, they call it, but we might as well be the regular kind.  She’s as old as me in every other way, if not older. There’s a  family legend that—because Faye was not exactly a planned  baby—Dad wanted to name her Daisy. As in, whoops-a-daisy.

“Oh, for cryin’ . . . ,” Faye exclaims, letting her spoon fall  out of her hand and clatter around the tabletop. She’s not  really that shocked to see me at this hour, but it’s still a pretty  good show.

I explain the situation to her, how Dad needs a fisher, and  that fisher needs a dog sitter.

“Anus?” she asks, incredulous, but not really. “Well, I  don’t know what you showered for, because that’s just soap  and water down the drain.”

“Oh, he’s not that bad,” I say, because why not just let her  swing away.

“Not that bad, Louis? Old Man Dan still smells like chum  after all these years, and he remains only the second-raunchiest  creature in that house. And you’re going over there? You know  that’s what killed Old Lady Dan the Fishwife, don’t you? She  died of stench. It was in the obituary. I read it.”

Always good value for money, my sister.

I shrug. It should be noted that I shrug a lot. It’s my official state gesture.

“I’m getting paid,” I say. “And Dad needs me to help him  out. Those are two sound reasons. Throw in kindness to animals and we’re well into bonus territory.”

Felt like I was doing pretty well, for a homeschooled  debater.

“Oh, you’re heading into bogus territory, all right,” she  says. “Seriously bogus. And I love Dad, and animals, as much  as you do. But you know what Ma would have to say about  that other thing.”

I forgot that I wasn’t even the best debater in the house. “She’d say I should do it for free,” I moan. “But Ma would  have everybody do everything for free, and that’s why we’re  poor.”

“Oh, we’re not poor, Louis; we’re just normal.” “Yeah, well, poor is not gonna be my normal, I’ll tell you  that.”

“Fine,” Faye says. “Tell me that if you need to tell me that.  I need to tell you that Ma is expecting to see you today. So, while you’re walking the dog and grubbing the money, you  also need to make time for a visit to your mother.” “I can do that.”

“Yeah, you can do that.”

“Yeah, Faye, that’s what I said.”

“Right, I was just helping. Sometimes you need help, to,  y’know, do things.”

This is all so wrong. Not inaccurate, but wrong. “Come on, Faye. Not when it comes to Ma.”

Ma is a great many great things. Foremost among them is  probably activist. She’s renowned for it. If there’s a cause that needs  activist, she’s there, and always has been. To the detriment, one  might say, of her personal health and well-being. She cares, about  everything, more than a rational person should. In my opinion.

By contrast, I have a nickname, and it was first bestowed  upon me by that very same activist Ma.

The Inactivist.

Kind of comical, and true enough, if not exactly flattering. I don’t much like getting involved.

“Would you have gone to see her today if I hadn’t  reminded you?”

“Of course I would have. But, anyway, wasn’t today supposed to be your day?”

“Ha!” Faye says, pointing through the air between us  sharply enough to nearly hurt my chest. Like she bagged me there. Which, possibly, she did.

“What, ‘ha’?” I say. “Today was definitely supposed to be  your day.”

“What, because they’re all my day? Because I’m the girl?” My choices here, as I see them, are limited and not good.  An honest answer to that does me no favors. Pausing too  long while I come up with something better presents its own  problems. It’s like verbal waterboarding, trying to argue with  Faye.

I aim for her not inconsiderable heart as a viable option  to battling her intellectually, which is no option at all. “Faye, I don’t like the hospital. It scares me.”

She slows down, out of kindness. I’d sort of prefer it if  she sped up.

“I know, Louis. And I understand. But, too bad. And any way, it’s not a hospital, so stop calling it that.”

She’s half-right, which is about 50 percent less right than  she usually is. Ma is staying at a place they call the Knoll.  But the Knoll is on the grounds of, and functionally a part  of, a whole hospital. It’s an inpatient program that lasts four  weeks. She’s done this thing before. Later, if she still needs  them, there are outpatient programs that also last four weeks.  She won’t need them, though. I’m an optimist. Dad says I am  pathologically optimistic. Meaning, I tend to believe that things  are gonna work out, on their own, without any help from me,  the way they should. Because they will, that’s why.

Ma is in the Knoll as a direct result of the fact that she  cares too much. About everything.

That’s an insufficient explanation, probably.

She works at a shelter called A Woman’s Place. Doesn’t  just work the place. Lives it. One of their managers. Often a night manager, which can be hard going. She’s a stellar person, a soldier. The single best person I’ve ever met, as a matter  of fact. All the pain of A Woman’s Place—and that is a world  of pain—is her pain.

She’s an inspiration to me. In a way she would never want  to be.

Meaning, I’m determined that what happened to her will  never happen to me.

The more streamlined story is, she was breaking up a  fight at the shelter one night. In the course of things, she  slipped and destroyed her knee. Shredded her ACL and  MCL. Such is the esteem in which my mother is held in A  Woman’s Place that everyone on the scene—including the  two combatants—dropped everything in order to care for  her on the spot.

That care took her eventually to City Medical Center.  And to surgery. And to lots of rehab and physical therapy. And pain. Lots and lots of pain.

And painkillers.

Which isn’t an altogether accurate word, is it? Pain doesn’t  die. I have seen pain, and I have never seen it die. So the pain got to my ma. And the painkillers got to the  pain. Then the painkillers got to Ma.

But it wasn’t just the knee, was it?

Dad, who has a way with words for a fishsherdude, put it  this way: Pain got to Ma. But the pain of pain got to her more.  Everybody’s pain got to her.

She cares too much, is what he meant. Like I said.

She broke, is what happened.

The job did it to her. Then being o the job double-did  it to her. She couldn’t stand being off the job—not helping  out. Helping everybody but her.

“Please, Faye?” I say because I’m out of anything more  convincing. “Can’t you do today?”

“I did yesterday,” she says.

“Yeah, but you could do today, right?”

“Right. I could. But I’m not going to.”

“Why not?”

“Because I want you to.”

“Aw, that’s just—”

“And because Ma wants you to.”

Rats. And rats and rats again.

“She didn’t actually say that. Did she actually say that?” “She actually said that, Louis. She wants to see you. And  for you to see her. She knows you’re afraid.”

“And she wants to see me anyway.”

“Duh, Louis,” she says, and with those three  syllables wraps up the discussion.

Duh, Louis. She wants to see me because I’m afraid. Not  only because of that, but for sure it’ s partly because of that.



About Chris Lynch:

Chris Lynch (he/him/his) is the award–winning author of several highly acclaimed young adult novels, including Printz Honor Book FreewillIcemanGypsy Davey, and Shadow Boxer—all ALA Best Books for Young Adults—as well as Killing Time in Crystal CityLittle Blue LiesPiecesKill SwitchAngry Young Man, and Inexcusable, which was a National Book Award finalist and the recipient of six starred reviews. Chris is the author of middle grade novel Walkin’ the Dog. He holds an MA from the writing program at Emerson College. He teaches in the creative writing MFA program at Lesley University. He lives in Boston and in Scotland.

Meet Chris! 

Tuesday, March 12, 2024 at 7:00pm ET

Porter Square Books (Cambridge, MA)

In conversation with Sara Farizan


Wednesday, March 13, 2024 at 7:00pm ET

Broadside Bookshop (Northampton, MA)

In conversation with Michael Mercurio


Thursday, March 14, 2024 at 6:00pm ET

Books of Wonder (New York, NY)

In conversation with Caela CarterCathy Carr, and E.L. Shen


Giveaway Details:

1 winner will receive a finished copy of WALKIN’ THE DOG, US Only.

Ends March 12th, midnight EST.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:

Week One:


YA Books Central

Excerpt/IG Post


Little Red Reads

Excerpt/IG Post



IG Post


Country Mamas With Kids

Review/IG Post


Books With a Chance

Review/IG Post



IG Post


Kountry Girl Bookaholic

Excerpt/IG Post


#BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog

Excerpt/IG Post


Two Chicks on Books

Excerpt/IG Post


Lady Hawkeye

Excerpt/IG Post

Week Two:



IG Post/TikTok Post



IG Review



IG Review


Review Thick And Thin

Review/IG Post


Review/IG Post






IG Review


Callisto’s calling

IG Review


Two Points of Interest



The Momma Spot


Book Blitz ~ The Space Between Us by Melanie Summers

The Space Between Us
Melanie Summers
(Brainiacs in Love, #1)
Publication date: February 29th 2024
Genres: Adult, Comedy, Contemporary, Romance

Love just might be the final frontier…

S.E.T.I. researcher, Gwen Fox, is a woman on a mission—to answer the cosmic question of the ages: Are we alone?
Along with her work family, Gwen is perfectly happy spending her days listening for extraterrestrial signals— until the worst happens. They get word that they’re about to be shut down by Ty Sterling, their billionaire backer whose heart is as cold as interstellar space.

About to lose everything, Gwen has no choice but to travel to Peru to change his mind. Armed only with scientific zeal and optimism, Gwen faces off against Ty, who just might be the most stubborn, cynical man in the galaxy.

As the tension between the pair builds, so does the undeniable chemistry that neither of them saw coming. Against the breathtaking backdrop of the Peruvian jungle, the space between enemies and lovers begins to collapse.

Will Gwen and Ty discover that together they form a supernova of passion? Or will their budding relationship crash and burn on impact?

*** The Space Between Us is a swoony, adventure-filled, delightfully funny tale of a woman who will do anything to save her job and the stubborn billionaire who dared to get in her way. It’s a standalone rom-com with a little more spice than a regular Melanie Summers book. ***

Enemies to lovers
S.T.E.M. romance
Adventure, romantic settings, and a little danger
Forced Proximity/Only one tent
A secret cinnamon roll hero
Loads of banter, awkward moments, and delicious tension

Goodreads / Amazon


He wants me. And it’s been so very long since someone wanted me. So long. Like I’m pretty sure I’m revirginated at this point. Let’s face it, I want him right back. I want to feel him against me and inside me and on top of me and under me. I want to taste his kisses and his skin and to feel the way he moves. There’s a silent alarm going off in the back of my mind, trying to tell me this is a terrible idea. It’s saying something about betraying my work family and risking my heart with a man who literally just told me he has no interest in happily ever after with anyone.

And yet…

Here we are, two consenting adults, completely alone and absolutely wanting to do this. I stare up at him, taking in his chiseled jawline, his stubble, his dark eyes that are undressing me right now. My heart pounds in my chest, my body hums with excitement. “A night to remember? That’s a bold prediction,” I say in a breathy voice I don’t even recognize.

“I’m confident I can back it up,” he tells me, lowering his face to mine.

He leaves just the smallest space between our mouths. Enough that I can feel his breath and can almost feel his lips against mine. It’s less than an inch and yet it’s infinitely far away because there’s still time for me to say no. To get up and walk away without allowing anything to happen. We could go back to whatever we were a minute ago. Just two people stuck out here alone together passing the time. That would be the smart thing to do— to get up and walk away because he is the very last man I should want like this.

But he’s also the man I’ve wanted like no other. The desire I have for him is all that matters in this moment. There is nothing, no one else on this planet that means anything to me right now. There’s no future, no past. It’s just the two of us here in this perfect moment.

Melanie Summers also writes steamy romance as MJ Summers.

Melanie made a name for herself with her debut novel, Break in Two, a contemporary romance that cracked the Top 10 Paid on Amazon in both the UK and Canada, and the top 50 Paid in the USA. Her highly acclaimed Full Hearts Series was picked up by both Piatkus Entice (a division of Hachette UK) and HarperCollins Canada. Her first three books have been translated into Czech and Slovak by EuroMedia. Since 2013, she has written and published three novellas, and eight novels (of which seven have been published). She has sold over a quarter of a million books around the globe.

In her previous life (i.e. before having children), Melanie got her Bachelor of Science from the University of Alberta, then went on to work in the soul-sucking customer service industry for a large cellular network provider that shall remain nameless (unless you write her personally - then she'll dish). On her days off, she took courses and studied to become a Chartered Mediator. That designation landed her a job at the R.C.M.P. as the Alternative Dispute Resolution Coordinator for 'K' Division. Having had enough of mediating arguments between gun-toting police officers, she decided it was much safer to have children so she could continue her study of conflict in a weapon-free environment (and one which doesn't require makeup and/or nylons).

Melanie resides in Edmonton with her husband, three young children, and their adorable but neurotic one-eyed dog. When she's not writing novels, Melanie loves reading (obviously), snuggling up on the couch with her family for movie night (which would not be complete without lots of popcorn and milkshakes), and long walks in the woods near her house. She also spends a lot more time thinking about doing yoga than actually doing yoga, which is why most of her photos are taken 'from above'. She also loves shutting down restaurants with her girlfriends. Well, not literally shutting them down, like calling the health inspector or something--more like just staying until they turn the lights off.

She is represented by Suzanne Brandreth of The Cooke Agency International.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter


$500 USD prize to one lucky creator!


Cover Reveal ~ Clare At Eighteen by Don Roff

Clare at Eighteen
Don Roff
(Clare Bleecker, #3)
Published by: Parliament House Press
Publication date: June 16th 2024
Genres: Adult, Thriller

Just when you thought Clare Bleecker had faced the darkest corners of Pickman Flats, her story takes a murderous detour under the glitzy lights of Hollywood.

In a town where the stars shine bright and secrets lurk in every shadow, Clare finds herself with an opportunity that could be her big break—or her final downfall. When movie producer Lester Bryce is found murdered, Clare is cast not in the role of a lifetime but as the prime suspect in a deadly drama. Talk about creative differences.

Now, caught in the spotlight of suspicion, Clare must navigate a labyrinth of lies and deceit in a city known for making and breaking dreams. Hollywood harbors a strange cult with a thirst for celebrity blood, and Clare’s own could be next on the altar. As the lines between performance and peril blur, can Clare unveil the truth before the final cut silences her scream? Can you say development hell?

The stakes of Clare’s “passion project” are higher, the Tinseltown killers more cunning, and the twists more treacherous than ever before. Clare must use all her cunning to survive this lethal script.

Can she “do lunch” and deliver a performance that will clear her name, or will this role prove to be her most deadly?

Will Clare win or die?

Kill Discriminately,

XOXO Clare

Add to Goodreads / Pre-order

Roff grew up in Milton-Freewater, Oregon. As a teen, he worked at the local drive-in theater and made Super 8 mm movies with his neighborhood friends, writing many of the scripts. He graduated from McLoughlin Union High School in 1985.

Roff joined the United States Army in 1989. He was stationed at Fort Benning, Georgia in the 3rd Ranger Battalion. He was a part of "Operation Just Cause" in Rio Hato, Panama, December 20, 1989.

Roff graduated from Walla Walla Community College in 1995, and The Evergreen State College in 1997.

In 2000, he was The Don and Gee Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting Semifinalist for his coming-of-age screenplay, LORD OF THE YARDS. In June 2006, Roff received the prestigious Zola Award for screenwriting from the Pacific Northwest Writers Association for his science fiction adventure script, OUTBOUND.

Roff's bestselling book, ZOMBIES: A RECORD OF THE YEAR OF INFECTION is available from Chronicle Books/Simon & Schuster UK. The audiobook is available from AudioGO. The calendars are available from Universal Publishing (a division of Rizzoli International Publications).

His supernatural thriller, SNOWBLIND, will soon be a major film, as will his dark comedy thriller, CLARE AT SIXTEEN.

Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

February 28, 2024

Book Blitz ~ The Edge by Jim McGhee

The Edge
Jim McGhee
(DI Barney Mains, #5)
Publication date: February 28th 2024
Genres: Adult, Thriller

DI Barney Mains blames himself for the grotesque murder of a top banker in France.

He’s obsessed with the belief that he allowed a near-mythical assassin to escape certain death to kill again.

And when a duplicate murder is reported 1000 miles away in Barney’s home town in Scotland, the guilt drives him ever closer to the edge.

How many more must pay the ultimate price for his failure?

But then death comes closer to home. He is left with no choice but to face his demons, before a shocking confrontation which will change everything…


Goodreads / Amazon


Barney controlled his breathing as he stepped into the room. Wary of sending shadows across that blind, he shone his phone torch onto the floor and started to step carefully around the perimeter of a worn carpet.

There was a small kitchen area on the wall to his right and a fold-down bed on the facing wall. He stopped and dared raise his torch a tad. The bed was empty and neatly made.

He moved around, past an open toilet door, and relaxed a little in the knowledge that this looked like a studio flat, which meant there were no other rooms to check, no need to risk staying too long.

He continued to step into the pool of light until he reached the third wall. He stopped dead. Why the hell would anyone take up this much space in a small flat by installing a bloody great chest freezer? And how could someone who’d been reduced to living in such mean accommodation afford to fill the bugger anyway?

Barney thought these were very interesting questions. But there was another. Why had he fitted a padlock to it?

Well, of course there was a logical explanation. Maybe the man who lived here made his living buying and selling meat. There were so many food shops and restaurants in the area that the logic was inescapable and Barney wanted to like it.

Breaking into a flat was one thing but breaking into a freezer full of meat would be just plain silly. And he badly needed to be gone.

He flicked the patch of light along the floor to the fourth wall, the one with the window. There seemed to be a desk and chair here. He looked closer. Yes, a desk, or rather a make-up table, with a trio of fixed mirrors. He felt that chill run down his back, the one which knew things before he did. It was the kind of table he’d seen Jack use when transforming himself into a movie legend. The Ghost too was said to be a master of disguise.

Had Barney, by going to an AA meeting then following its worthy Leader to this place, discovered the dragon’s lair? But why here and why had he been a regular at such meetings? Unless he was quite simply hiding in plain sight, where no-one would think to look for him. He could return here as Alec and leave as whoever he chose for his next commission. But if so, why would he let the Leader come and go so freely?

Barney knew he was staying too long. He needed to get out before someone returned. And yet, the mystery of the freezer intrigued him.

In such a room, in such a place, a locked freezer?

He took a big breath and realised how tense he was. But he’d come this far and rightly or wrongly he sensed that the freezer was significant.

The thought made him so cold that he might have been inside that big white box. Was he really going to add this next crime to drink driving and housebreaking?

‘Ach, what the hell,’ he said out loud for courage, then pulled out his lock picks again. Now, all he had to do was lift the lid and confirm the contents as lamb chops and steaks before making his escape and laughing at himself as the complete fool that he was.

He paused. He felt both disoriented and exhilarated; shitting himself and screaming inside with some crazed sense of liberation. He was in the forbidden land, beyond the laws he’d spent his adult life enforcing.

The scariest thing, he realised as he pulled open the lid and rested it against the wall, was that he liked it.

At first glance, it looked like the opaque plastic sheet could very well cover nothing more than the stock products of a meat trader.

He reached across to his left to grab the far corner then carefully drew it towards him so that he could put it back in more or less the same position.

He shone his torch. Shit! His gut clenched. A human face stared blankly back at him from within a clear plastic bag.

Barney pulled the cover all the way to his right.

The man, maybe aged around forty, had no obvious injuries and was dressed like half the world, in faded jeans, denim jacket and trainers. He had clear plastic bags over his hands.

But it was that stony, bloodless face like porcelain which drew him. For this could, after all, be the face in the sketch, the face which haunted him.

Jim McGhee's a former award-winning environmental journalist.

Formerly based in East Lothian, near Edinburgh, Scotland, he is now mainly to be found in Nice in the South of France, the main setting for his DI Barney Mains series.

After a full-on career as a campaigning newspaper reporter, he and wife Jean launched their own recruitment company in central Edinburgh and for twelve fun-packed years worked closely together alongside their brilliant team - without spilling a single drop of blood.

The Alpes-Maritimes and Var departments, on the other hand, have provided a host of dramatic locations just perfect as inspiration for the odd spot of fictional gore.

Locals, blessed with scenery ranging from unspoilt mountain villages to the classic palms-and-marinas coast, claim that they can be swimming one moment and ski-ing a little over an hour later. It's a claim not yet put to the test!

Besides, when not writing or travelling, Jim's more likely to be off on a hike in the hills with his ever-ready buddy, Jack the Irish Terrier.

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February 26, 2024

Cover Reveal ~ Take Any Chance by Brenna Aubrey

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Take Any Chance
Brenna Aubrey
(Gaming the System, #10)
Publication date: April 30th 2024
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

In the game of life, Mia Drake has leveled up like a pro. Just out of medical school, she’s landed her dream job—a medical residency at a prestigious hospital. She has a beautiful home and an amazing husband. But there’s one more achievement she’s determined to unlock: becoming a mother.

In the business world, Adam Drake is a beast. He can face any threat. Conquer any boardroom. But when Mia issues the challenge to start a family, Adam will have to take up a sword to fight the ultimate boss—his own fear.

The path forward is clear, but are Adam and Mia truly ready to embark on this epic quest?

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Brenna Aubrey is a USA TODAY Bestselling Author of contemporary romance stories that center on geek culture. Her debut novel, At Any Price, is currently free on all platforms. Her books are on over a million e-readers worldwide, have been translated into German, French, Italian and Dutch. They've also been adapted as an interactive app game. Look for the brand new POINT OF NO RETURN series and her extremely popular GAMING THE SYSTEM series.

She has always sought comfort in good books and the long, involved stories she weaves in her head. Brenna is a city girl with a nature-lover’s heart. She therefore finds herself out in green open spaces any chance she can get. She currently resides on the west coast of the US with her husband and children (both human and furry).

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