Monday, November 16, 2015

Things from Other Worlds by Anne E. Johnson

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BOOK INFORMATION

TITLE – Things from Other Worlds
 AUTHOR – Anne E. Johnson
 GENRE – Children’s literature / science fiction
 PUBLICATION DATE – October, 2015 
LENGTH (Pages/# Words) - 84 pages
 PUBLISHER – Anne E. Johnson
 COVER ARTIST – James for GoOnWrite.com

BOOK SYNOPSIS

Things from Other Worlds - Cover


Many strange things wait inside these pages. There's a fuzzy ball of kindness, camped out on a grumpy man's porch. A chewed piece of gum with a mind of its own. A smart Alec who actually stands in line twice when they're handing out brains. A girl who isn't afraid when all the plants in her neighborhood come to life.

This collection of 15 science fiction and fantasy stories for kids by award-winning author Anne E. Johnson is perfect for ages 8-12, or anyone with a child's heart.


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EXCERPT


THE CRUSTY-HEARTED MAN 
  (Excerpt from Story No. 15 in Things from Other Worlds)

Outside our town, a few miles from where Jimbo’s gas station used to be, an old man lived all by himself. Everybody knew he was there, but nobody actually knew him. He’d show up a few times a year to buy canned goods at Ruth & Bobby’s, but that was it. Not a soul, not even the oldest soul in town, could remember a time when that man hadn’t been around. He must have been two hundred years old. Some said more like three hundred. 
Truth was, he’d been out of touch with people for so long that nobody could remember his name. 
He couldn’t even remember his own name. Folks said that a crust had grown over his heart. 
The heart’s a funny organ, though. It’s tougher than you’d think, and can survive through pretty much anything. It’s like a tulip bulb. No matter how icy and long the winter is, that little bulb stays alive under the frozen ground until it’s time to shoot up a new sprout, green and full of life.
But for some especially frosty people, there’s rarely enough sunshine to wake up their hearts. It takes something spectacular, maybe even something from another world. I’ll tell you what happened to this old, old man, and you’ll see what I mean. 
Nobody wanted to have anything to do with him. Flies and grubs and spiders occasionally tiptoed into the walls of his house, but most were never heard from again. The younger raccoons and rabbits only touched his front stoop on a dare because their parents warned them not to. 
“Get away!” the old man would scream hoarsely while shaking a frying pan above his head. 
Every living creature, from human on down to bedbug, knew enough to keep off the old man’s property. But that knowledge had not been broadcast across space. So, when an alien landed in a clearing in the woods one late winter afternoon, it didn’t realize what it was up against. It was scared and a little woozy after a rough landing, although it wasn’t afraid. It had been brought up to assume that all beings will do right by each other when given the chance. Poor little thing. 
I bet you think an alien is a spindly sort that looks like it’s made of green plastic. Well, not this one. It was furry. Oh, so furry. Picture fur as thick as a polar bear’s and as soft as a mink’s. Now double how thick and soft it is. Now color it blue-green. This deep, soft, dark fur was all over its body, which was short and wide. The alien, standing, came up just past your knees, but was too wide to get your arms around.
It had two giant tangerine-orange toenails on each of its four feet. Its eyes, too, were the color of tangerines, but twice as big. They were very close together in its head, and surrounded by fur, giving it a very intense look. Your average human would probably describe this alien as “the cutest thing I’ve ever seen,” and make a sound that went something like “Awwww.” 
Well, this little alien was in need of shelter and food. It didn’t know the plants and animals of our planet, so it shuffled right by some perfectly edible berries and nuts. But it recognized a building when it saw one. And so it approached the old man’s house in the middle of the woods, with hope in its heart but nothing in its belly. 
“MMMnnnyonggg,” it called out from the yard. Nothing stirred in the house, but several woodchucks and foxes gathered to watch from a safe distance. The alien trundled up the front steps. Once it caught its fur on the rotting wood, but freed itself like a real trooper. Inside the house, the old man heard a nasal howl. 
“MMMnnnyonggg!” 
He assumed it was a wolf or an injured bear. “Durn thing’s up on the porch,” said the crusty-hearted man as he pulled his frying pan down from its nail. “I’ll teach ╩╝em whose house this is.” 
The old man shoved the front door open so hard it smacked against the rotten siding. A few shingles crumbled and fell. The woodland creatures watching the show skittered deeper into the shadows, fearing what would come next. 
But the alien didn’t move. It didn’t know it was supposed to be afraid of the sound of wood smacking wood, or the sight of a two-legged earthling holding a round metal object. It assumed this was either a way to say “hello,” or else a communication device telling the whole planet about its arrival. Those were the only options that made sense to the alien. Widening its eyes and puffing up its fur, it tried to look as friendly as possible.
For his part, the old man was so puzzled that he forgot to swing the pan. “You’re not a bear,” he accused the blue-green furry thing. “You’re sure not a wolf. What are you? Gorilla?”
The alien didn’t know what the word “gorilla” meant, but it enjoyed the sound, so it waddled a little closer to the cool-talking human.
“GGgggrrrrill,” said the alien, trying to fit in.
The old man just snorted and slammed the door, leaving the alien alone on the porch.


AUTHOR BIO


Author Photo - Anne E Johnson

As the author of dozens of published short stories, Anne E. Johnson has won writing prizes for both children's and adults' short fiction. Her short fiction for kids has appeared in FrostFire Worlds, Wee Tales, Jack & Jill, Young Explorer’s Adventure Guide, Rainbow Rumpus, and elsewhere. Her stories for adults can be found in Alternate Hilarities, The Future Fire, Liquid Imagination, and SpeckLit. For a complete list of her published stories, please visit AnneEJohnson.com. She also writes science fiction novels, including the humorous Webrid Chronicles series.
To give back to the writing and children’s lit community, Anne is a volunteer story judge at RateYourStory and writes a weekly column called Kid Lit Insider for EatSleepWrite.net.
Anne grew up in Wisconsin but moved to New York City over 20 years ago. She now lives in Brooklyn with her husband, playwright Ken Munch.


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Petty Little Lives by Alice Reeds



Petty Little Lives
Release Date: 08/18/15
Limitless Publishing
316 pages



The only thing cousins Sapphire Hope and Roxanna Revolution have in common is they don’t want to spend the summer at their aunt’s Iowa farm.

Sapphire is an entitled L.A. rich-girl…
Spoiled by her Oscar-winning mother and a CEO father, Sapphire thrives on the lifestyle of a jet-setting socialite and aspiring model. She has no interest in rural life, or the strange cousin who seems to want to be her friend. About the only thing even remotely interesting about the farm is the good-looking intern at her aunt’s veterinary clinic, Dawn Matthews. He might do as a summer distraction.

Roxanna is a sensitive loner…
She spends her time playing guitar and posting videos for her YouTube subscribers, but at least at her aunt’s, nobody knows what she’s hiding. Since her secret drove her boyfriend away, she could use a few friends, but Sapphire clearly isn't interested—and even less so when Dawn prefers Roxanna's company over hers.

When Roxanna's secret comes out, Sapphire, Roxanna, and their friends are forced to view their lives from a new perspective and face choices they never thought they’d have to make.

 Can friendship and new love help them overcome physical and emotional challenges and learn what’s really important? Or will old habits and attitudes refuse to die?






AMAZON KINDLE / PAPERBACK





Sapphire
Finally I spot Dawn surrounded by three dogs. They jump around him and then, as he seems to throw something, they run off like mad dogs. I step onto the grass, which only makes walking even more of an awful thing, and go toward him.
The dogs come running back toward Dawn, after they found whatever he threw them, but one of them speeds past him and shoots right toward me. Before I can go out of the way or react in any sort of way, the dog jumps at me and sends me tumbling down backward into the grass. Heels, bad balance, grass, and dogs are definitely not a good mixture.
“You all right there?” Dawn asks after he turns around and sees me flat on my back. “Donna, get down!”
The dog, Donna, climbs down from me and I sit up. Grass and dry earth covers me which I try to swipe away with my hands, which only works so well.
 “Nothing broken,” I say and stretch my hands out toward him so he’ll help me up. After a moment of thinking he bends down and takes my hands, which seem incredibly tiny compared to his, and pulls me back up on my legs. “So this is what you do on your free day, you play with the pack?”
“Today, yes.” He takes the ball which one of the dogs placed in front of him. I watch the muscles on his arms move as he throws it. Impressive for a farm boy.
“So,” I start saying as means of getting back his attention. “You’re Valesca’s intern for the summer, huh?”
“Yap,” he confirms without looking at me. 
“Why would a University boy want to hang out at a farm in the middle of Iowa instead of hanging out with his friends?”
“Because being an intern like this, especially at your aunt’s, gives you a lot of extra points which are always good, you know?” I still don’t get why working for or with my aunt would be such a big deal. She’s just a vet, nothing that special. “What about you, what major are you taking in college?” 
“I’m not going to college,” I say and chuckle lightly. “I don’t need that for the job I want to do.”
Dawn turns his head toward me and finally, actually, looks at me. One of his brows is raised in surprise, I suppose. “You’re not going to college? What else are planning on doing?”
“I’m a model.” I proudly strike a pose, one that I know most boys appreciate.
Dawn doesn’t seem impressed. Not even a tiny bit. Seems like farm boy will be a hard nut. Good— it’ll give me more of a challenge I can work on during my stay here. At least I’ll have something to entertain myself.








Alice Reeds was born in a small town in Germany but spent her first eight years in Florida, USA. Later on, she moved back to Europe, where her family moved around a lot. Alice is a soon-to-be freshman at University where she studies Political Science. In her free time Alice mostly writes, reads, or watches countless Let's plays.

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Cover Reveal & Pre-Order: So Much More by R.C. Martin




Title: So Much More
Series: Made For Love #3
Author: R.C. Martin
Genre: New Adult Romance
Cover Design: Pink Ink Designs
 Release Date: December 4, 2015



Blurb

The Red Coat Incident
4 cups humiliation
2 cups rejection
1/2 cup heartache
3 tbs regret
1 tsp tears

A pinch of hope 

Sarah's life is a bit of a mess. After only a year of living her dream, teaching the third grade, one catastrophic mistake has her packing her bags and running away. Lost and broken, she clings to the small hope that her old stomping grounds will be the perfect place for her to start fresh. When she walks into Little Bird Cafe, looking for a job, she finds herself unprepared for the sweet deliciousness that is Brandon. 

The Olivia Incident
5 cups loyalty
3 cups stupidity
1/4 cup resentment
2 tbs distrust
1 tsp weakness

A pinch of lust 

Brandon's dream is finally coming true. His days may be long and hard, but he refuses to complain. He starts every morning in his kitchen, baking his signature pastries. With the students pouring into the college town he calls home any day now, he knows he needs help around the shop. When Sarah, the blonde-haired, blue-eyed beauty, walks into Little Bird asking for a job, he's can't refuse her. As her new boss, he tries to convince himself that he can look, but he can't touch. 

When he lets her loose in his kitchen, her broken heart is mended, his battered heart is stolen, and they can't deny that they both want more. So much more. 


Book three in the Made for Love series can be read as a STANDALONE novel! I promise. Written for audiences 18+ years of age due to language and sexual content.





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Excerpt

With the uncomfortable amount of tension in our apartment, I decided to head out with my laptop and do some online job hunting elsewhere. There are a million and one coffee shops in Fort Collins, so I knew I’d be able to settle myself somewhere. When I found parking just a short walk away from Little Bird, it was like the coffee shop was welcoming me back.

I spent a good amount of time here during my senior year at CSU. Addie, Roman and I had this little tradition. Every month we would get together for the open-mic-night that was hosted here. Addie and I knew Roman from work.

Roman.

For a while, I had such a big crush on him. He was handsome and enchanting and, unfortunately, totally into my best friend. Obviously that didn’t work out in my favor.

It’s a common trend when it comes to my love life.

Then again, things didn’t work out so well for him either. Addie picked the other guy. Her forever love. I wonder what Roman’s life is like now. The little girl in my arms is his niece. I can hardly believe I’m holding evidence of more than a year gone by. When I left, Daphne and Trevor were just friends. Totally and completely in love, but just friends.

When I left—Little Bird Cafe was just that. Now, it’s Little Bird Cafe. Home of Brandon’s Bakery.

Brandon.

Hot. Damn. Brandon.

I’m trying not to stare. I really am. I’m not interested in men these days.

Really. Truly.

But Brandon…

I told him I remembered his face, but I don’t remember it being so distracting. Maybe it’s because I was too hung up on Roman at the time to notice. Whatever the case may be, I can't stop thinking about his smile. I don't know how he does it, but when he smiles, he looks charming and endearing, but also smolderingly handsome. When I look at him, it's like fanning through a rolodex of my favorite book boyfriends. Except he's real. I could touch him.

Shit. Don't think about touching him!

My heart shoves aside my rationale and I try and imagine what it would be like to kiss him. Or what it would feel like to have his dark, honey brown scruff scrape across my skin as his lips leave a wet trail down my neck. My Lord, that low trimmed beard he wears is totally sexy in that rugged, I'm-a-man-and-I-won't-apologize-for-it sort of way. And he most certainly is all man. All six-foot-plus of him, with a beautiful body that looks to be void of a single ounce of fat. I wonder what he would look like in nothing but that black apron he's sporting right now...

Fuck, fuck, fuck!

Stop, stop, stop!


Too much smut. I've been reading too much smut!

I want the job, not the man. The job!

Remember the last time you wanted the man?


My heart flips me off, unappreciative of the reminder; but my pulse slows knowing my brain is right. I want the job. I need the job. Anything else is more than I can handle in my current state. With that in mind, I snuggle Caroline a little closer and then look back over at Brandon.

The job. I want the job. Not those warm, dark hazel eyes. The job, dammit. The job.

I clear my throat, hoping my voice won’t be dripping in lust when I go to use it. “So, when did Little Bird became Home of Brandon’s Bakery?” I manage.

“A couple months ago,” he says with a smile that can’t decide if it’s shy or proud.

Kill me now.






Author Bio


R.C. Martin finds it a bit awkward referring to herself in the third person, so she's only going to do it for this one sentence. (We all know who's writing this bio anyway!) 

I'm a born and bred Coloradan. I will always claim that square state as my home! While I now reside in Virginia, the land of the Rocky Mountains is where I've left a piece of my heart and where my characters come to life. I'm a woman in love with love and filled to the brim with compassion for women like me, on a journey to find themselves in today's society. I aspire to inspire my readers to do more than settle. I hope that my writing will remind everyone that she (or he!) is valuable and worthy of the best kind of love--the kind that is gentle, patient, faithful, passionate, all consuming, never ending, and leaves you breathless. 

When I'm not writing I'm reading; when I'm not reading I'm writing...you know how it goes! I also enjoy cooking, baking, crocheting, and jigsaw puzzles. Basically, I'm an old soul with a young heart, nonchalantly waiting for my prince to come.



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Giveaway

Mina's Revenge by J.M. Witt




Title: Mina's Revenge
Series: Woodland Creek
Author: J.M. Witt
Genre: Shifter Romance
 Release Date: November 16, 2015



Blurb


Mina Spitz, a lifetime resident of Woodland Creek, has been alone longer than she cares to remember. Her powers are changing and they’re more than the bloodline inheritance from her mother. She has a feeling that the identity of her father has something to do with it. 

Rollo Frost is new to town. He’s tall, dark, dangerous, and everyone knows it. Relocating his pack to Woodland Creek, he’s determined to put the secrets that haunt him to rest. The problem is he doesn’t know the truth behind those secrets and may never know. 

Rollo becomes enthralled with Mina, wanting to know her secret, and his pack isn’t happy about it. 

Mina has the power to destroy everything Rollo’s built, she just doesn’t know it…yet. 


When life-altering secrets are exposed, their worlds collide in a way they never expected.





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Excerpt

Watching as the ball rolled to the destination I’d predicted, my opponent cursed.

“Shit!”

After sinking the eight ball into the corner pocket, I replaced my stick in the holder and walked over to him and held out my hand. I hadn’t gotten his name and hadn’t cared to. He was either new to town or just passing through, not that either mattered to me. He’d taken in my womanly shape and let his ego—and maybe the booze-- get to him. After insulting me, I’d accepted his challenge as some of the regulars looked on, giggling.

Some may have classified me as a ‘shark’ but that wasn’t really my problem. He’d seen me as an easy win, and I proved him wrong. I could smell the stink that lingered on him. Permeating the air around me, even the aroma of peanuts and alcohol couldn’t hide his stench. Of course my senses were keen and came in handy now and then. He was a shifter and I guessed a canine of some kind.

Tired of waiting, I demanded my money. “Deal’s a deal. Hand it over.”

He scoffed and swaggered in drunkenness as he leaned in closer. “You’s a snake.”

Leaning back, trying to avoid his nasty breath fanning my face, I spit out. “No, not a snake.” I heard some snickers from the bar, but ignored them. “But I may go rabid on your ass if you don’t hand over my money.”

That seemed to get his attention. But just as quick he turned from me and stumbled toward a corner table. I stayed several steps behind as I observed those sitting there. They too were new to town or passing through. I didn’t recognize any of them and I knew everyone in Woodland Creek—at least everyone who mattered.

As he took his seat, completely ignoring my presence, my eyes immediately found a pair of green-blue eyes sitting on the other side of the table. I was momentarily drawn into them and blinked, breaking the spell. There was something about him, besides the fact that he was rugged and big. I wondered how tall he was, knowing his height had to be significant. My senses had been off lately so I couldn’t get the read on him that I wanted to. His hair was long and dark and he had it pulled back loosely. His face was covered in a beard that was in desperate need of a trim. A leather coat covered his shoulders as I took in their width.

His mouth curled into a smile before he turned back to the woman hanging on his side. Rolling my eyes I turned back to my competitor. Placing my hands on the table, I leaned in and demanded my money once again.

“This is the last time I’m going to say it. You lost fair and square.”

He snarled at me and the rest of the table grew silent. The ambiance changed and I stood up fully, taking a step back. My eyes met the green-blue ones once again as they shifted to gold. He was a shifter, too. Hell, probably they all were and I knew in that moment that most likely they weren’t just passing through.

“Zeke, what d’ya owe the lady?”

“She hustled me, I don’t owe her anything.”

The same girl from before turned her attention to Zeke as she mumbled, “She ain’t no lady!” She watched me, waiting for a reaction. Scouring my body, she taunted me. “In fact, I bet she works for an hourly wage on the corner.”

I had a temper and before I knew it, I was nose to nose with her, leaning across the table spitting out, “You can find out how much of a lady I’m not. Just say one more word.”

Green-blue eyes—my name for him—stood and everyone paid attention. He was taller than I imagined and his hair was longer, too. He walked around the table and stood in front of me. Leering down at me, his eyes flashed gold again. When I didn’t flinch, his expression became curious, examining me closely. If he didn’t know what I was, he was a good actor.

I was growing uncomfortable, when he suggested, “If I were you, I’d let it go. Zeke here has a bad temper and I’d hate to see him lose that temper on a sweet thing like you.”

Ugh. I was utterly disgusted. “I’m no sweet thing. Maybe you should warn Zeke about my temper.”

“What’s your name?” He took another step closer as I tilted my neck up to see him. If he thought he could intimidate me, he was wrong… Maybe. “Mine’s Rollo.” He stuck his hand between us and smiled.

Groaning, I leaned around him so my eyes could meet Zeke’s. “Keep the money. Maybe use it to get groomed and bathed.” Zeke lurched up, but Rollo, with a smile on his face, put his hand up and Zeke sat right back down, making it evident that Rollo was their leader.

Grinning at me he said, “You’ve got balls.”

“If you mean bigger than his,” nodding toward Zeke, I confirmed, “Bet your ass I do.” It was a lost cause. Zeke could keep his forty bucks and get bent. I had more important things to deal with.

That got Rollo to smile. A chill ran up my spine and I knew I had to go. Turning, I stalked toward the door, grabbing my own leather jacket off my stool at the bar as I walked by.

I walked out of Vider’s into the cold night and inhaled deeply, but another scent caught my attention. Turning, Rollo was walking out the door and headed right for me. Marching toward my store, the next one down, I picked up my pace. I didn’t have time for a random hookup, not tonight.

“Hey, you didn’t tell me your name.”

Shouting over my shoulder, I replied, “I know I didn’t.”






Author Bio



I'm a stay-at-home mom with four young children and one extremely supportive husband. We've been married for over ten years and reside in Metro Detroit, Michigan. 

I've dreamed of writing romance novels since I was little. After having baby #4, who may or may not have been fathered by Christian Grey, I decided it was time to pursue my dreams. 

When I'm not running to various appointments, enjoying time with my friends and my family, dating my husband, or avoiding cleaning my house, I'm writing!

I love music and believe that books and music can't exist without the other. My goal is for you to read more than a good book, but for you to have an experience!



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Giveaway

Cover Reveal: Over The Fence Series by Carrie Aarons




Title: Catching to Win
Series: Over the Fence #3
Author: Carrie Aarons
Genre: New Adult/Sports Romance
Cover Design: Carrie Aarons
 Release Date: December 1, 2015



Blurb


Kelsey O'Brien is the definition of a free spirit. She goes where she wants, when she wants, and takes to bed who she wants. And when she arrives back at Grover University after eight months on an African animal preserve, it’s her best friend, who recently sprouted abs and a panty-dropping beard, that has caught her eye. As their friendship turns physical, Kelsey begins to form feelings she swore she'd never have for anyone. But when the past she's not ready to face finds her, she must make a decision whether to stop running, or confront the truth. 

The first time Clint Bellows laid eyes on Kelsey, he fell hard. Too bad she looked right through him. A year and countless hours in the gym later, she's back and hardly recognizes him and his new body. After a drunken encounter takes them over the line of friendship, Clint agrees to Kelsey's proposal of a benefits-added relationship. Only he's playing for keeps, and is willing to round all of the bases trying to score the self-proclaimed gypsy. 


She's running from her demons. He's committed to winning her over. Can he catch her in time, or will she be out of his grasp before he can blink?





Excerpt

When we got inside, the blaring hip­ hop music was only coming from one corner of the house. Kelsey's corner.

I waved the guys off, signaling that I would take care of the problem. As I got closer, I could make out the lyrics, "Drunk in loveee. We be all night! Loveee. Loveee. We be all night!"

Chuckling to myself on her choice of song, I knocked on the door. Waited a few seconds, nothing. This time I banged my entire fist in an effort to rattle the wood on its hinges. Still nothing.

"Roo..." I opened her door, letting myself in, and stopped dead at the sight in front of me. Kelsey was in the middle of the room, her hair piled on the top of her head like some fiery tornado, a glass filled to the brim with red wine in her hand. And she was dancing like a mad woman.

She donned a white tank top that exposed the sides of her breasts and entirely-too-large grey sweatpants that pooled over her feet, making her look like a dwarf. She was utterly adorable and fucking mouthwateringly sexy.

At the creek of the door she turned, her naturally red lips splitting in a megawatt smile.

“Hi!”

I could tell from her dancing and the slight blush of her cheeks that she was tipsy. It made her even cuter.

“Hi yourself. What’re you doing there?” I couldn’t help her infectious smile from spreading across my face too.

She shook her hips wildly as the song changed to something faster. Pitbull maybe. But I was never good with music. “I had a long, hard day. Kickass, but fucking hard! So I’m dancing.”

Kelsey makes this more evident by raising the wine glass to her lips, taking a huge swig, and then raising it above her head and twirling in circles.

I drop my baseball bag on her floor and toe my sneakers off. Then I join her in the middle of the floor, and begin to move.

She gives a happy shout and moves closer to me, joining her free hand with mine and swinging both of our arms.

“I had my fingers up a zebra’s ass today. Well technically, it was a whole fist!” She announces this like it's the most normal thing in the world while I pull quickly out of her grasp. Kelsey giggles at my repulsion.

“Oh my god, bro! Don’t worry I had gloves on. But I did have to juggle her placenta in there...”

“Kels, stop. I am going to throw up.”

She did that sexy little giggle again and raised the glass to her lips. As she took it away and swallowed, she then raised it to mine. I let her pour some into my mouth, watching her cinnamon eyes over the brim. I knew the instant desire sparked in them, and I could feel myself harden in the mesh shorts I wore.

Reaching up, I held the delicate stem in my fingers and pried it out of her hand. Setting it down on the desk, I began to stalk toward her like she was the meal and I was ravenous.



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Author Bio


They say those who can't do, teach. Well, Carrie has no hand-eye coordination, and her idea of romance is a Netflix marathon complete with Thai food. So, she writes sports romance novels instead.

Beginning her writing career as a journalist, Carrie wrote about real-life crime and scandal before turning to the fantasy world of fiction. She lives with her husband in an apartment they are constantly outgrowing.



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