Cover Reveal: Coming Home by M.D. Cruz

28.2.15

Coming Home by M.D. Cruz
Publication date: Summer 2015
Genres: New Adult, Romance

Lexie was a teenager who thought she’d found real love in Elijah. Things were perfect until he left for football camp, and never came back. Thinking he’s dumped her she has no choice but to go on with her life. Now six years later they come face to face at a club. Lexie wants to be mad and hate him for breaking her heart, but Elijah is making it hard for her to hate the now man she’s been in love with since high school.
Elijah wasn’t expecting to see Lexie his first night back in town. When he sees her and memories of what used to be come knocking at his heart, he can’t help but follow after her. He comes face to face with a pissed off Lexie, and is set on making sure he does everything in his power to win her back. He has to convince her that what she thinks happened is not the truth.
Can they both be together again when trust is an issue? When secrets from the past catch up with both of them in the present, can their love truly conquer all?
Add book to Goodreads
M.D. Cruz on:

The Crystal Keeper by Laurisa White Reyes

27.2.15

Crystal Keeper 1 to 3 
The Crystal Keeper by Laurisa White Reyes

Fourteen years before The Rock of Ivanore… Jayson lives among the shadows of Hestoria, his sole purpose for staying alive – to protect his half of the Seer’s crystal. Exiled from his homeland for loving the king’s daughter, Ivanore, Jayson is now pursued by two opposing factions: the Vatéz (League of Magicians) who intend to use the crystal for their own selfish gain, and the Guilde, the ancient guardians of the crystal. Meanwhile, Ivanore flees from her father to Hestoria in search of Jayson. As the Seer, she is plagued with visions of him being tortured and is determined to rescue him. When the Vatéz capture her, however, she unwittingly jeopardizes everything Jayson has vowed to protect. He must now make a terrible choice: Should he save Ivanore or save the crystal? The Crystal Keeper trilogy is available in print or digital formats.

Crystal Keeper 1-3
Grab your FREE copy of Exile Now!
Excerpt  
Ivanore hunched over the parchment, the tip of her quill flicking above her hand like a trapped bird desperate to escape. The tallow candle cast a cramped circle of light across the table, hardly enough to see by. If only the night would last a little longer. Perhaps then she would have enough time to write everything she needed to. But alas, time was one thing she had too little of—that and light.
An older man with long, gray-streaked hair and piercing gray eyes waited beside her. The stone bungalow, their most recent of many hiding places, boasted the barest of furnishings: the table, stool, cot—and a plain wooden chest, its key held tightly in Zyll’s fist.
A sudden thump sounded at the door, startling them both. A strand of Ivanore’s hair, gold as the candlelight, fell across the page. She quickly tucked it back into place and wrote faster.
Zyll laid a hand on Ivanore’s shoulder. “They are here,” he whispered.
Ivanore finished the document and handed it to Zyll unbound. Turning to the chest, he carefully laid the pages inside.
“Wait,” said Ivanore. “Will you keep this as well?” A flat circle of pale green crystal lay in her open palm.
“But you will need it. I mustn’t—”
“Please,” she insisted, pressing it into his hand. “I can’t risk losing this one.”
Zyll reluctantly folded his fingers around the cool stone.
"Of course, milady,” he said.
Then, adding the crystal to the parchment, he laid a plate of thin wood atop them both, sealing the chest’s false bottom. He closed the lid and locked it.
The pounding at the door grew more insistent. Whoever stood outside was using their full weight against it in an effort to break through.
“We must hurry,” said Zyll.
Ivanore allowed herself a quick glance at the chest, offering the briefest of prayers that the gods would keep it safe until her return. Then, taking her by the arm, Zyll led her through the low archway dividing the bungalow’s front room from the back.
A loud crash of splintering wood resounded through the bungalow. Their visitors had finally broken in.
“Find her now!” a deep voice bellowed.
Grateful for the trousers she now wore instead of her usual cumbersome skirts, Ivanore clambered onto a stool and through a narrow window, lowering herself as quietly as possible to the ground outside. Once Zyll had done the same, they stole away across the rocky field. Though the sky was black as ink, their path was illuminated by the amber glow of volcanic fissures scoring the area for miles around.
“There she is!” a man’s voice shouted behind them.
The words sent spasms of fear through Ivanore. She glanced behind her and saw three soldiers emerge from the bungalow, wearing the gold and red cross of her father’s crest. They had tracked her even here, to the remotest corner of Imaness. Would Fredric ever let her be? Ivanore stopped running. She looked at Zyll, her trusted guardian and ally these past months since she had fled Dokur, and knew her time with him had come to an end.
“You’ll watch over them until I return?” she asked, out of breath. “Keep them safe. Don’t let my father find them.”
“You have my vow,” Zyll whispered, his voice tight with emotion. Ivanore’s eyes welled with tears as she pressed her lips against the calloused skin of Zyll’s hand.
 “Go,” said Zyll. “Go now before it’s too late.”
Ivanore released Zyll’s hand and sprinted forward alone. As she ran, she cupped her hands around her mouth and let out a loud, sharp call, much like that of a hawk or an eagle. She risked another glance over her shoulder and watched as Zyll turned to face their pursuers. As the soldiers neared, their swords glinting in the fire glow, Zyll held up his hands. A horizontal bolt of cerulean lightning shot out from his palms, striking the oncoming soldiers. The men recoiled, their bodies instantly singed and bloody. Ivanore ran on.
In desperation, she repeated her call, and this time another voice called back. A dark form appeared on the horizon, silhouetted against the light of the volcanic fractures and growing larger as it approached with tremendous speed. As it neared, the creature’s massive feathered wings moved the air around Ivanore in warm, powerful gusts. Ivanore saw clearly its eagle’s head with a beak large enough to break a man in two, paired with the muscular, furred body of a lion. As she ran toward it, the gryphon lowered its head, waiting. Behind her, the soldiers reeled in pain, but they did not forget their duty. One man struggled to his knees, grunting from the effort. Reaching over his shoulder, he slid a short bow and arrow from his pack and swiftly took aim. Ivanore reached the gryphon and in one smooth motion hoisted herself onto its back, twisting her arms deep into the feathers on the creature’s neck. In that same moment, a single arrow found its mark in Ivanore’s shoulder. She cried out before her body slumped forward and her mind went dark. The gryphon took flight then, and in less time than it took to draw another arrow—or a breath—they had vanished into the night.  

Author Laurisa White Reyes
After spending more than a decade as a newspaper editorialist, magazine staff writer, and book editor, Laurisa finally started living her dream of being an author. She is the author of three novels for younger readers, the editor-in-chief of Middle Shelf Magazine, and Senior Editor of Skyrocket Press. She lives in Southern California with her husband and five children.
   
100_Amazon_Paypal
Crystal Keeper Launch Giveaway - Kindle Fire HD 6Ends 2/28/15 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Book Blast Giveaway
$100 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Ends 3/15/15 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Inspired by the Oscars

25.2.15

Every February, I get super excited towards the end of the month. Why? The Oscars, baby! I’m addicted, absolutely love it. The excitement, the buzz, the fashion, the fashion faux-pas, the energy, but most of all - the inspiration it gives me. You see, since I was about twenty years old, I’ve dreamed of myself up there on that red carpet. Not as an actress or anything silly like that. But as a screenwriter - actually as an Oscar-Nominated screenwriter. What? A girl can have ambition, can’t she?
photo credit: oscars academy awards via photopin (license)
I usually love the oscar speeches by the underdogs, or simply by those that have worked incredibly hard to get there. The ones that talk to the screen during their speech and tell us that we CAN do it. They tell us that if they can do it, we can do it. And I always believe them. I know that I can. I have it in me. I’m sure of it.
I haven’t written any completed screenplays just yet, because I’ve been concentrating on writing novels but it is in my future plan. Maybe I’ll start later this year? Who knows?
As is always the case, this year’s Oscars left me teary-eyed at times, but I love that. I’m such an emotional gal, you know? One of the most emotional moments was during the performance of Glory from the Selma movie. Boy was that amazing. Have you seen it? It’s beautiful. Oh and I must mention Lady Gaga. I mean... WOW, that Sound of Music performance rocked. She was A.M.A.Z.I.N.G!! Who knew, eh? If you didn't see it, check it out below.
As for the fashion, there certainly were some interesting frocks - but none of them really blew me away this year. Jessica Chastain’s navy blue dress came pretty close though.
Dougie Howser… erm, sorry Neil Patrick Harris was a fabulous host and certainly did a cracking job - I particularly enjoyed his 'walk of shame’ on to the stage wearing nothing but his underpants, socks and shoes!
Did you watch the Oscars this year? What did you think? Did it inspire you?

Made With Love By The Dutch Lady Designs