Excerpt, Giveaways, Guest Blog, Reviews

#Review and Guest Blog featuring On the Count of Three (a Brandon Fisher novel) by Carolyn Arnold w/a rafflecopter giveaway! #thriller @Carolyn_Arnold

ON THE COUNT OF THREE

by Carolyn Arnold

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GENRE: Thriller

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BLURB:

And they thought prison was hell…

When a woman’s disappearance ticks off all the same boxes as two unsolved murders, Miami homicide detective Kelly Marsh is convinced there’s about to be a third. If she’s right and the killer sticks to their previous MO, she only has three days before Jenna Kelter’s decapitated head will show up somewhere in the city. With no time to waste, Kelly reaches out to the one person she knows can help: her former mentor and family friend Jack Harper, who just happens to lead a team with the FBI’s Behavioral Analysis Unit.

BAU special agent and profiler Brandon Fisher easily sees the similarities between Detective Marsh’s missing person case and the two cold cases: all three victims served time for DUI vehicular homicide and disappeared three days after being released from prison. But is that enough to assume Kelter has been abducted by a serial killer? Brandon’s not so sure and fears his boss may have let his personal connection to Marsh cloud his judgment. Surely there isn’t any other explanation for why they jumped into an investigation less than twenty-four hours after Kelter was reported missing. Then again, maybe Brandon is letting his own differences with the detective affect his perspective. He’ll need to move past it, though—and quickly.

After all, this killer has evaded capture for the past six years, and they may be looking at a lot more victims than originally suspected. This serial killer is calling the shots and pulling them into a macabre game of cat and mouse. While the team has no choice but to play, if they don’t make the right moves, one of them may not make it out of Miami alive.

 

Writing an Engaging Series: A Look at FBI Thriller ON THE COUNT OF THREE

Article by Carolyn Arnold

The more books you write in a series, the steeper the challenges. The overall plot, the killer(s), the method, the victimology are rather easy. What is more difficult is coming up with ways for your characters to grow. It requires that you dig deep into out their backgrounds, their motivations, and their experience. If authors get lazy in this regard, it will show in the final product.

For this reason, I endeavor to interview my characters to really drill down and find out what about the plot has that can parallel to their personal or professional lives. Sometimes it’s harder than it sounds. When it came to writing On the Count of Three, I interviewed several of the characters—even ones outside the series’ main characters.

In this book, I’m introducing someone who may become a part of the series and there’s only one shot at a first impression. You need to make sure the character is strong and relatable—real—so that readers can connect with them and want to know more about that person. Further, then that, you want the reader so invested in the character, they’ll want to follow them for many books to come.

Also, if you’re writing a police procedural series like me, it’s crucial to get the facts right. If you’re familiar with my work, you realize just how important this aspect is to me. I’ve even adopted the trademark Police Procedurals Respected by Law Enforcement™. This wasn’t a decision that I chose, but rather that chose me. I’ve had many people from law enforcement reach out to me over the years to tell me how accurate my books are. Some have said they even see themselves in the characters as if looking in a mirror.

So how do I get my facts right when I don’t have a background in law enforcement? Research, but I’ve also been blessed with a network of people who have experience in law enforcement to answer my questions. They are so understanding and selfless with their time in responding. What I’ve found is they are appreciative that I am taking the time to make sure procedure is as accurate as possible.

I am pleased to say that even though the challenges can be great—and at times seem insurmountable—I believe my hard work has paid off again with the seventh installment in the Brandon Fisher FBI series. On the Count of Three took much longer to finish up than I would have liked, but I believe the final product makes up for any delay.

I invite you to download a copy of On the Count of Three or order in paperback or hardcover from your favorite retailer. But be warned: this book isn’t for the faint of heart.

About the Brandon Fisher FBI series:

 

Profilers. Serial killers. The hunt is on. Do serial killers and the FBI fascinate you? Do you like getting inside the minds of killers, love being creeped out, sleeping with your eyes open, and feeling like you’re involved in murder investigations? Then join FBI agent and profiler Brandon Fisher and his team with the Behavioral Analysis Unit in their hunt for serial killers.

This is the perfect book series for fans of JT Ellison, Catherine Coulter, Allison Brennan, and Blake Pierce. This series is also bound to entertain those who enjoy Criminal MindsNCIS, Silence of the Lambs, Seven, Dexter, Luther, and True Crime.

Read in any order or follow the series from the beginning: Eleven, Silent Graves, The Defenseless, Blue Baby, Violated, Remnants, On the Count of Three.

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Excerpt Two:

The coffee in my gut was a churning, acidic whirlpool. The victims had been alive when their heads were severed. Now give me bloody murder scenes any day of the week. But decapitations? No thank you. Maybe it all started with that “neck bone connected to the head bone” song as a kid? Even kids know a head should always be attached to the body! I ran a hand through my hair, basking in the fact that my head was still there.

My repulsion wasn’t because I was still wet behind the ears. I’d seen my fair share of serial killers’ handiwork since I’d come on board with the BAU about three years ago: Some who tortured, some who raped, some who mutilated bodies. Even one who wore his victims’ skin, but the latter desecration had been done postmortem.

And here I was, not even in Florida yet, and my pops’s voice was in my mind. He’d have no sympathy for what I faced every day on this job. He’d never been a fan of the BAU; he would have been happier if I’d enrolled and served in the Navy as he had. To him, serving God and Country was more in line with patriotic duty. That was all fine and good, and I had no doubt it was because of him that I’d hoped for an assignment in counterterrorism when I finished at Quantico. But that wasn’t meant to be. And I’d adjusted. The work I did with the Bureau made a difference regardless of Pops’s opinion. We brought closure to devastated loved ones, got justice for innocent victims, and on the best days, even saved lives.

My gaze fell to a photo of Jenna Kelter, and I stared into her eyes. She was the image of a thirtysomething girl next door. She was a brunette with hazel eyes and a cute smile. We needed to save her, and the fastest path there was to figure out what sort of killer we were dealing with. I considered this killer’s actions thus far and drew a preliminary conclusion. “Our unsub is intelligent, organized, yet adaptive,” I posited. “They have the patience to wait until circumstances fit their needs.”

Paige nodded. “That could also indicate they’d watched their targets beforehand.”

“Even if they were familiar with all the victims’ routines before prison, what’s to say their schedules resumed that within three days of release,” I opined.

“Well, they obviously knew where to strike to get them alone. None of the families or their friends saw the abductions.” Paige pressed her lips, a little smugness coming from her.

I flipped through the pages, looking for details on their bail hearings. “I’m assuming Kelter got out on bail?” I’d read enough of the file to know that she didn’t have any prior DUI offenses, so the bail amount would likely have been set low.

“She did. And her trial came quickly because she didn’t dispute the charges,” Zach said. “According to the file, she’d expressed remorse.”

I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t watch anything too grisly on television.  Not a Criminal Minds kind of girl.  Love my true crime stuff though.  Go figure.  What I really liked about this book is that has realistic characters that are somewhat at a crossroads in their careers and in life.  While dealing with a serial killer.  My kind of book.  I like the human aspect of a thriller.  Ms. Arnold does not disappoint for me.

I’ll also admit that this is my first Brandon Fisher book.  I really liked him.  At times, he was whiny but I could totally understand this from him.  Not everything is going to be crystal clear and people get frustrated with their job.  It makes him human and I appreciate that I got to know him in that way.  Plus, he is also dealing with the possibility that a team member is leaving and then having someone come in as the “competition”.  Again, real-life issues regardless of the job.  And I loved how his mind worked.

The actual story is a nail biter.  There are some grisly parts but for a reader to fully understand the plot, they needed to be put in there.  The research and the attention to detail that Ms. Arnold writes about is just AWESOME!!!  I’ve read Madison Knight books and they are so good because I feel like I’m actually there.  I felt the same with Brandon Fisher.  I really think that I need to go back and at least read the first book in the series.

All that said, this book isn’t all Fisher.  In fact, I thought it was more about Zach, who works in the unit.  His story comes full circle and at times, I just wanted to hug him.  Again, real-world issues.  At the end of the day, you have to make the right decision for you and for your family and I think he did so.  I couldn’t imagine seeing the things that they have seen and not be affected by it all.  Plus, as I’ve said before, there are just some really grisly stuff in the book.  Definitely not for the faint of heart.  It’s not a cozy mystery.

Overall, I really enjoyed getting to know the unit and Brandon Fisher.  I will back for more.

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AUTHOR Bio and Links:

 

CAROLYN ARNOLD is an international best-selling and award-winning author, as well as a speaker, teacher, and inspirational mentor. She has four continuing fiction series—Detective Madison Knight, Brandon Fisher FBI, McKinley Mysteries, and Matthew Connor Adventures—and has written nearly thirty books. Her genre diversity offers her readers everything from cozy to hard-boiled mysteries, and thrillers to action adventures.

Both her female detective and FBI profiler series have been praised by those in law enforcement as being accurate and entertaining, leading her to adopt the trademark: POLICE PROCEDURALS RESPECTED BY LAW ENFORCEMENT™.

Carolyn was born in a small town and enjoys spending time outdoors, but she also loves the lights of a big city. Grounded by her roots and lifted by her dreams, her overactive imagination insists that she tell her stories. Her intention is to touch the hearts of millions with her books, to entertain, inspire, and empower.

She currently lives in London, Ontario with her husband and beagle and is a member of Crime Writers of Canada and Sisters in Crime.

Connect with CAROLYN ARNOLD Online:

Website – http://carolynarnold.net/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/Carolyn_Arnold

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/AuthorCarolynArnold

And don’t forget to sign up for her newsletter for up-to-date information on release and special offers at http://carolynarnold.net/newsletters

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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE

 

PLEASE MENTION THE PRIZE THAT THE AUTHOR WILL BE GIVING AWAY:  

 

paperback copy of Remnants

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Guest Blog, Harlequin Spotlight, Meme

Guest Blog by Rachel Brimble featuring The Templeton Cove Series! @RachelBrimble @HarlequinBooks

Templeton Cove…the end is nigh

 

My love affair with a small UK seaside town called Templeton Cove began back in 2012, when I wrote the first book in the series, Finding Justice. I created a town on the southern coast of England, inspired by my childhood holidays, along with a cast of seven or eight characters. The story is romantic suspense and revolves around the murder of a mutual friend to the hero and heroine.

By the time I’d finished writing the book, I’d fallen in love with the Cove and wasn’t ready to leave. So, as my agent started to send out Finding Justice to publishers, I started on the second book, A Man Like Him.

You can imagine my elation when Finding Justice was contracted by Harlequin Superromance! I felt as though I’d finally broken into the publisher I believed was the right home for Templeton Cove. My editor loved this small town as much as me and quickly contracted A Man Like Him followed by another three-book contract in 2013 (What Belongs To Her/Christmas At The Cove/Her Hometown Redemption), followed by another three book contract in 2015 (Saved By The Firefighter/Ethan’s Daughter/A Stranger In The Cove).

It’s always been a lifelong dream of mine to write an ongoing small-town series similar to those by my favorite authors, Nora Roberts, Jill Shalvis and Robyn Carr. Harlequin gave me that opportunity and I shall be forever grateful to have worked on eight books with the best editor on the planet, Piya Campana.

But, as the saying goes, all good things must come to an end…

Harlequin Superromance has now closed its doors to new submissions and the last set of books will be published in June 2018. This is a sad fact for authors and fans of the line and I have received some truly amazing emails and messages from devoted readers of the Templeton Cove series. In truth, I have been overwhelmed by the support for all of my future endeavors, too.

Book 8, A Stranger In The Cove, will be released January 2018 and I hope I’ve managed to bring the series to a good and satisfying end for the fans who have read the books from the start to those who have jumped in and out – all the books can be read stand-alone.

So, what’s next for me?

I plan to keep writing and have a new single title romantic suspense, If I Want You, coming November 8th from the Wild Rose Press. In addition to this book, my agent is currently shopping out a new Edwardian romance and a new contemporary romance, both of which, I hope will be the first books in two brand new series.

The initial disappointment of Superromance closing has passed for me and now I’m excited for the future – things happen for a reason, right?

Fingers crossed, my amazing readers will continue to read my books as I write each one hoping to deliver a better and better story.

Happy Reading!

 

Rachel x

Rachel’s latest release is Ethan’s Daughter – here is the blurb & buy links (all the other books in the Templeton Cove series can be found on Amazon, Barnes & Noble etc):

There’s safety in solitude…isn’t there? 

Single dad and best-selling thriller writer Ethan James has no problem being Templeton Cove’s most famous recluse…until a surprise visit from the past plunges him into a real-life crime drama just as feisty nurse Leah Dixon barges her way into his world. 

Ethan’s first priority is to protect his daughter. His second priority is to keep Leah out of this dark web—and that means out of his bed. Except Leah isn’t going anywhere; she’s afraid little Daisy is in danger. Ethan couldn’t live with himself if anything happened to Leah…but pushing her away may be even harder!

 

 

 

If you need to see what Harlie’s Books obsession with this series is, here are the links to all of my reviews.

http://www.harliesbooks.com/posts/arc-review-of-ethans-daughter-templeton-cover-7-by-rachel-brimble-rachelbrimble-harlequinbooks-harlequinmyrewards/

 

http://www.harliesbooks.com/posts/review-of-saved-by-the-firefighter-templeton-cove-6-by-rachel-brimble-wa-rafflecopter-giveaway-rachelbrimble/

 

http://www.harliesbooks.com/posts/review-of-her-hometown-redemption-featuring-an-interview-with-my-english-rose-rachel-brimble-wa-rafflecopter-giveaway/

http://www.harliesbooks.com/posts/review-of-rachel-brimbles-christmas-at-the-cove-templeton-cove-4/

 

http://www.harliesbooks.com/posts/harlequin-spotlight-review-of-rachel-brimbles-what-belongs-to-her-sashas-top-ten-things/

 

http://www.harliesbooks.com/posts/harlequin-spotlight-a-man-like-him-by-rachel-brimble-reviewexcerptgiveaway/

 

http://www.harliesbooks.com/posts/finding-justice-by-rachel-brimble-harlequin-spolightreview/

 

Buy links:

Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01NAMY53H/ref=series_rw_dp_sw

Amazon UK:

 http://amzn.eu/eYGTixj

Barnes & Noble:

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/ethans-daughter-rachel-brimble/1125531674?ean=9781488017186

Kobo:

https://www.kobo.com/gb/en/ebook/ethan-s-daughter-mills-boon-superromance-templeton-cove-stories-book-7

BIO:

Rachel lives with her husband and two teenage daughters in a small town near Bath in the UK. After having several novels published by small US presses, she secured agent representation in 2011. Since 2013, she has had seven books published by Harlequin Superromance (Templeton Cove Stories) and an eighth coming in Jan 2018. She also has four Victorian romances with eKensington/Lyrical Press.

Rachel is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association and Romance Writers of America, and was selected to mentor the Superromance finalist of So You Think You Can Write 2014 contest. When she isn’t writing, you’ll find Rachel with her head in a book or walking the beautiful English countryside with her family. Her dream place to live is Bourton-on-the-Water in South West England.

She likes nothing more than connecting and chatting with her readers and fellow romance writers. Rachel would love to hear from you!

Links:

Website

Blog

Twitter

Facebook

Facebook Street Team – Rachel’s Readers

Amazon Author Page:

https://www.amazon.com/Rachel-Brimble/e/B007829ZRM/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1490948101&sr=8-1

Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1806411.Rachel_Brimble

 

Excerpt, Giveaways, Guest Blog, Reviews

#Guest Post, #Excerpt & #Review of Regenerate by Sarita Leone w/a rafflecopter giveaway!

Regenerate

by Sarita Leone

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GENRE: Paranormal Romantic Suspense

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BLURB:

The Octopus isn’t an urban myth—and its agents are anything but ordinary. The intelligence bureau is so well-hidden most doubt its existence. A handful know its location. And fewer walk the halls in the subterranean compound.

Benjamin Sinclair didn’t ask to be a scientific miracle but every mission has its risks and one perfectly-placed bullet ended his life—for a brief moment in time.

Nicole Anima battles demons every day. Life as a paranormal resources operative gives her tortured mind a rest—and keeps her from contemplating her own death.

When Anima and Sinclair partner on a globe-trotting race to eliminate the threat about to cripple humanity, all hell breaks loose. Leaping from planes, crashing into continents, dealing with voodoo priestesses, and running through jungles with zombies hot on their trail doesn’t leave much time for romance, but this duo somehow manages to sizzle.

Two agents. Telepathic mind paired with regenerated commando. One world—and a mission to save it.

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EXCERPT TWO:

Nicole ripped the iPod off her bra strap and tossed it, ear buds trailing like streamers from a small black kite, toward the sand beyond the boardwalk.  

An ordinary man never would have heard the music playing. He never would have been able to hear the beating of her heart, either. But Ben Sinclair was no ordinary man. He heard both, and now that she remembered the important details of his life she wouldn’t forget them again.

“I can still hear old Mick jiving.”

The near-whisper sent a fresh wave of revulsion along every nerve ending.

“I can hear him. I can give you that satisfaction you need.”

“You don’t know what I need.” The words were hoarse. It was a miracle she could speak at all, given the tightness of her throat. “You have no idea.”

“Give me a chance to show you what I know. I promise, you won’t be sorry.”

“I’m already sorry. I’m sorry you know my name. Sorry you have my number. Sorry you’re even on this planet. Sorry? It’s just the tip of how I feel when I remember you walk among humanity.”

Silence. For one long moment, she thought she might have conquered the spider.

Then, the truth.

“You didn’t always treat me like this. There was a time when—”

“That was before I knew what you are, before I had any idea evil hides under…” She couldn’t finish. Wouldn’t finish. There was no way in hell she was going to admit his looks ever turned her on.

Worse. That he had stolen her heart. And, still held it—despite her attempts at retrieval.

Damn treacherous heart.

Topic:  How in world did you come up with this concept?  You write historical romance so was it hard to step into the PNR world?

Thanks for inviting me to chat with you today about my paranormal romantic thriller, REGENERATE!

I have written historical and contemporary romances so you’re right—this is my first real leap into the paranormal world. I’d toyed with the idea for a while but wanted to wait until the “right” idea came to mind. A few years ago, that idea fell into my life.

REGENERATE is a story of redemption, rebirth, and the restoration of order from chaos.

Anima and Sinclair work for an elite, super covert government intelligence agency called The Octopus. The Octopus houses the nation’s finest tactical military minds. They keep evil from taking over the world, without anyone ever realizing they’ve even been saved.

Nicole is badass beautiful, a woman whose paranormal ability has had her to the brink of madness more than once. She’s found her stride, working as an agent for The Octopus. But spending time with Sinclair might just push her over the edge. You see, she and Sinclair have a past. And, whether she likes it or not, he still holds her heart.

Benjamin Sinclair is the world’s first regenerated human—that is, a sniper’s bullet killed this commando but science and stem cell technology brought him back to life. He’s invincible and immortal which makes him the ideal choice for battling a zombie army or stopping an assassin’s bullet.

Stem cell research is something close to my heart. I’ve had a profound, life-changing brush with stem cells and the possibilities they hold for saving lives. While they don’t, sadly, cure everyone who needs their medical miracle, they do have potential—and save some. So Sinclair is my way of saving a hero and letting him live to save others. And that’s how I came to write this book—the stem cell part of my real life influenced my writing life. In a way, it’s been a huge help, to write about saving the man and watching him be a hero to humanity.

I loved writing this book—Nicole Anima and Benjamin Sinclair are fearless. Their struggle to keep the world safe from evil feels relevant.

REGENERATE is the first book in a series. The Octopus will definitely send Agents Anima and Sinclair on other dangerous missions. Just as there seem to be new challenges for humanity that evolve, interpersonal issues between this pair will also come into play to force growth—and encourage lots of sizzling moments, too!  The second book in the series is set to release in December of this year. I did intend this to be a series from the very beginning. As long as the world needs saving, there’s room for The Octopus!

Thanks for your time! I’ve enjoyed chatting with you!

  Talk about a book that is so totally what I don’t read.  Zombies, second chance romance, paranormal and a thriller all wrapped up in one book.  I’ll be honest, I picked the book to review based on the cover.  He’s hot, right?  And he is totally Sinclair, too.  I have no shame.  But what kept me in the book was the story itself.  I knew going into it that this book is a first for the author.  😉  

What I truly want to talk about is that the author took a risk.  She is a historical romance writer.  And yes, I’ve read her so that is why I’d give this one a chance.  She has written a book that at times is frustrating, thrilling, sexy as hell and in the end a great start to a series with recurring characters.  Yes, same couple.  *SWOON*  Same couples in a book are like catnip to me.  I like to see the character growth between both hero and heroine and how it continues to shape their romantic relationship.  Ms. Leone has set up Anima and Sinclair for a great series.  There is a back story that goes further than what we read in this book.  I feel it and I really hope that she expands on it.

Now, while I don’t care for Zombies (yes, I don’t watch The Walking Dead), I loved that aspect of the story.  And with Anima dealing with her own past and how she lives today…fascinating.  She is real to me and I realized that her relationship with Sinclair will definitely have its ups and downs.  Sinclair…I love the idea of stem cells regenerating.  Of course, now he is immortal and I can’t wait to read more about how he copes with that realization.

Overall, I really liked the book.  Sinclair and Anima are a great couple with plenty of sexy times and surrounded by a plot that is fast paced and breathtaking.  I can’t wait to see how Ms. Leone builds the world in this series and where she takes us with Sinclair and Anima.

 

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AUTHOR Bio and Links:

 

Sarita Leone is an award-winning author who has written romance in many forms including Regency, paranormal, and contemporary. She loves happily-ever-afters in any setting!

When she’s not writing, Ms. Leone spends her time hiking, learning languages, and traveling. She loves adventure and can pack a suitcase, grab her passport, and hit the road in less time than it takes to peel an apple!

http://www.saritaleone.com

https://www.facebook.com/sarita.leone

https://www.amazon.com/Regenerate-Sarita-Leone-ebook/dp/B01N0J61IN/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1480170051&sr=8-3&keywords=sarita+leone

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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE

Sarita will be awarding $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
a Rafflecopter giveaway