Monday, 30 September 2013

Review of Because of Lucy by Lisa Swallow


Author: Lisa Swallow
Publication Date: August 28th 2013
Source: e-copy from author provided in exchange for an honest review

*Recommended 17+ due to strong language and sexual content* 

Ness's parents are shocked when she turns down her place at Leeds University and takes on a full-time job in a call center. Determined to begin her adult life the way she wants, Ness moves to Leeds to live with her best friend Abby.

One night she meets Evan, who is everything she hates about guys. He may be hot but he's also drunken, arrogant, and on top of that, he apparently has sex with girls and forgets about it. But Evan isn't what he seems and Ness soon discovers they have more in common than she thought.

Evan is struggling to escape from his past too, and when Lucy appears she threatens his new relationship with Ness. Unsure if she can deal with the effect Lucy has on Evan, Ness makes a decision about her future which pulls them apart.

When their new lives don't go as planned, Ness and Evan are both faced with difficult choices. 

All because of Lucy...

*I Hereby Award This Book 5 Wings*

I have to be honest, this is only the second book I have read by this author, yet I can already tell she is an all-round superstar. The other book I have read of hers is called Soul Ties and is a Paranormal Romance, then here's this Contemporary Romance which has just come along to show that Lisa can switch-up the genres and be able to pull it off with deft ease. 

This is the story of Vanessa and Evan. The two meet by chance when Ness's friend Abby is dating Evan's friend Matt. There's an attraction between the two but Evan's reputation as a charmer precedes him and Ness doesn't want to get caught up in the drama.
Abby and Ness room together, and Abby has a habit of holding parties til stupid o'clock in the morning. Ness can't get away from the student life even though she isn't one. She decided not to follow along the path that she had previously been on. Her parents wanted her to study but she decided to get a job instead. 

Evan is attracted to Ness. Maybe it's the fact that she's gorgeous, maybe it's the fact she doesn't seem interested or maybe it's both. When Ness looks at Evan, all she can see is his reputation for being the 'love them and leave them' type of guy. She can't deny she's attracted to him but as drawn as she is, she doesn't want to be just another notch on his bed post. 

What ensues is a tale of a not-so-straightforward romance. Don't forget, there's Lucy to consider. But just who is the mysterious Lucy and what hold does she have on Evan?

I would definitely recommend this book to lovers of Contemporary Romance and anyone who loves an emotionally gripping story. 
I was so drawn into this story. I had an emotional investment in it from the beginning. I felt as though Lisa had written the role of Vanessa for me. She has sass and doesn't take any messing. She is just my kind of girl. 
This book was full of sexual tension and oh-so-witty banter and repartee. There were times aplenty when I had to laugh out loud at some of the moves Evan was trying to pull and Ness wasn't having any of it. But then there were also times when my mood was brought down, take for instance my Goodreads status at 72% in: 

"I just can't hold them back any longer... Hot salty tears are racing each other quietly down my cheeks as I take in all that Evan is and what he and Ness could be... I want my own real-life Evan, minus the "issues""
and my status update when I finished:

"I couldn't go to bed because I simply had to finish not just want to, but HAD to finish this book. I seriously adore Evan and Vanessa. The whole man-whore thing was so... well, you'll see... I am bowled over by Lisa's beautiful words and her insight into "the issues" - I am crying my eyes out but trying to be quiet so as not to wake my son!"

In all honesty, I can NOT wait until the next book in this series, I think I might have bitten my fingers off in the slow, agonizing wait!

Thank you Lisa for the review copy of Because of Lucy. I am in awe of what a rockstar you are. You are proof that us authors don't have to be pigeon-holed and stick to one genre. You should be greatly proud!

Thank you to anyone who came to read my review. Pick up your copy at either of these links:




















Wednesday, 25 September 2013

*Cover Reveal* AYLA by Kelly Anne Blount

Hey Guys & Gals *waves*
Have you any idea what a gorgeous cover I am bringing you today? No? Well then you're in for a treat!
Here for your pleasure is the cover for AYLA the second book in the Necoh Saga.

Without any further ado...

*Ta-Dah*



How gorgeous is this cover? Not only because purple is my favourite colour but because of the eyesm the beautiful model and the gorgeous castle in the background!

Coming October 2013…

In the blink of an eye, Brooklyn is torn from Ryder’s arms and thrown back into her own world…

    Vowing to find a way back to Necoh, she goes to dangerous lengths and embarks on a deadly mission to find her love and help him destroy Grishma once and for all.

Lives will be lost, trust will be shattered, and secrets will be revealed…

Will Brooklyn find Ryder?

Will they finally put an end to Grishma’s murderous reign?

 Add to your Goodreads TBR list

Author Bio:
Kelly Anne Blount was born in Madison, WI. After attending university, she moved to Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands to teach elementary school. While living there, she met the love of her life and was married in a beautiful ceremony on the Caribbean Sea.

After returning stateside, Kelly started to pursue another passion, writing. She is currently working on her first young adult fantasy series and a contemporary romance novel as well.

In between serving as an intensive intervention teacher working with exceptional children and writing in the beautiful mountains of Asheville, she loves spending time with her husband, Lee, and their furry babies. Kelly also enjoys reading. Her favorite genres are YA fantasy, MG, paranormal romance, and the occasional thriller.

Contact Kelly: 





Thank you for coming by for the cover reveal today. Hope to see you again soon!


Deadly To Love (Elemental Killers #1) by Mia Hoddell - Book Blitz







Deadly to Love (Elemental Killers #1)
by Mia Hoddell
Release Date: February 2013

Genre: YA/Romance/Paranormal/Fantasy
ASIN: B00BDQ3QGA
ISBN: 978-1-291-41025-9

Blurb:
The world is dangerous – but love will kill you.

Little did Serena Jackson know that one simple, flirty remark to an anonymous guy online would lead to her world being changed forever.

She doesn’t know him, but inexplicably, is drawn. She knows it is wrong but she agrees to meet.

His real name is Kai. He is beautiful. And immediately Serena feels herself blindly falling for him even though she senses a lie. She knows he is hiding something and it terrifies her.

What she doesn’t realise is that her entire life has been built on secrets and lies. The people she loved left her in the dark for a reason.

She trusted them. She trusts Kai. But as he pulls her straight into the heart of the danger the lies and deadly secrets are revealed. They overwhelm her, and the person she once was no longer exists as she is thrown into a ruthless world of elemental forces. The price of truth is her life—and now the world wants her dead.




Available from:
Amazon (Kindle) | Amazon (Paperback) | Lulu
and only 99c / 77p on Kindle for September!

Praise:
“I couldn't put it down. So I finished it last night and all I can say is WOW! This book was amazing and different.” Brianna (Book Blogger)

I loved how the author took a different approach to writing a love story in modern times with the paranormal element present. I thought it was absolutely wonderful and refreshing. Marvelous!” Kathy H (Amazon Reviewer)


“I will admit I scoffed at the way it started but in the end I had fallen in love with this story…completely untraditional it was a very original idea, not to mention modern. This story had such a good plot and the story structure was sound.” Kacii – The Kooky Bookworm (Book Blogger)


About the Author

Mia Hoddell lives in the UK with her family and two cats. She spends most of her time writing or reading and loves anything paranormal. Mia always had a love of writing but never reading. She was more interested in sports and hated sitting still - despite getting three poems published before the age of sixteen. Finally though, she found some novels that captured her interest and developed a love of reading which is now one of her favourite hobbies.

Mia began with poems before moving on to short stories. Although she enjoyed this, Mia found she had too much to tell with too little space, so later on she created her first series 'The Wanderer Trilogy' and from there other ideas have emerged. With a total of nine books planned at this moment, she is busy working on her second series 'Elemental Killers' before moving onto the next idea on her ever growing list.


Author Links
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***Excerpt***

Happy with the amount of photos I had collected I started to head back out of the forest, still flicking through my shots. As well as close ups, I had taken a few landscapes and as I was almost at the edge of the forest I noticed something in one of the photographs that made me stop.
In the left hand corner was a figure that looked mostly human, but was blurred as if they were moving on the spot.
A cold shudder shot through me.
Looking over my shoulder I became slightly panicked and felt as if someone was following me.
My eyes flicked and searched the shadows. Even though there was no sign that anything had ever been behind me, the forest looked different now - dark and threatening.
Instinctively I broke away and ran, still clutching the camera that was displaying the freaky image. Surrounded by trees I didn’t stop until I was free of the forest and back in the open light and sight of my house.
Throwing open my door, I slumped against the inside of it, regaining my breath from the short sprint. Once I had recovered I looked down at the photo once more, just to make sure that I hadn’t been seeing things. The old saying “the camera never lies,” came into my mind and for the first time I wished it not to be true. Sure enough though, as I looked down at the screen, the figure was still there and this time I noticed a red and orange glow around where its feet should have been. The image almost looked like the person was on fire but I thought I would have surely noticed if there had been a burning man in front of me.

***GIVEAWAY***

Mia Hoddell is giving away an Amazon gift card this month only there is a slight twist: the more entries she receives the more money she will put on the gift card to giveaway! For example:


No matter what = $5
100 entries = $10
150 entries = $15
200 entries = $20
and so forth...
So if she gets 1000 entries she will give away $100, there’s no limit!


To enter all you have to do is buy or have bought Deadly to Love. It's only $0.99 or £0.79 on Amazon for the duration of the giveaway! This will also unlock extra entries for you so you can earn more points by sharing the giveaway. Remember the more entries she gets the bigger the prize for you so share!


Sunday, 22 September 2013

Review of The Dollhouse Asylum by Mary Gray

*WARNING: May Contain Spoilers!*



Title: THE DOLLHOUSE ASYLUM
Author: Mary Gray
Publication Date: October 22nd 2013
Source: ARC provided by SHP in exchange for honest review


A virus that had once been contained has returned, and soon no place will be left untouched by its destruction. But when Cheyenne wakes up in Elysian Fields--a subdivision cut off from the world and its monster-creating virus--she is thrilled to have a chance at survival.

At first, Elysian Fields,with its beautiful houses and manicured lawns, is perfect. Teo Richardson, the older man who stole Cheyenne's heart, built it so they could be together. But when Teo tells Cheyenne there are tests that she and seven other couples must pass to be worthy of salvation, Cheyenne begins to question the perfection of his world.

The people they were before are gone. Cheyenne is now "Persephone," and each couple has been re-named to reflect the most tragic romances ever told. Everyone is fighting to pass the test, to remain in Elysian Fields. Teo dresses them up, tells them when to move and how to act, and in order to pass the test, they must play along.

If they play it right, then they'll be safe.

But if they play it wrong, they'll die.

*I Hereby Award This Book 5 Wings!*


*KABOOM* That sound? My brain imploding from the amazingness of this book!!

Welcome to your new home. Welcome to Elysian Fields. Welcome to your worst nightmare!!

A once dormant disease has resurfaced. The Living Rot is back. Just when people believed their lives would return to some form of normalcy, the disease rises up to ravage humankind. 
Teo Richardson has a plan that will keep him and Cheyenne safe. He must take her to Elysian Fields. There she can live without fear of the disease. There they can finally be together. Happy ever after? Not a chance!

Teo has created Elysian Fields. He has brought 7 couples with him, then there's himself, Jonas and Cheyenne. The environment is disease free, the living rot cannot reach them here. The settlement has 14 houses. 7 on one side of the street for the women and the other side, 7 for the men. Then there's Teo's home. 

Teo leaves Cheyenne in the middle of the street, alone and unsure what she has to do.  She knows she must prove something to her once tutor. He always asked questions but kept the answers close to his chest. Cheyenne always had to work hard for the answers and go the right way about getting them in order to please Teo. If she asked too  many questions, this would not please him, so she must prove her worth in this task he has set for her.

The street is devoid of people, the homes are all neatly lined up along each side of the road. But none of her neighbours are willing to come out and help her in this task. They stay locked up in their homes like they are afraid of something... Or someone...

Cheyenne can't understand this new world Teo has created. She does not know why she is here except for the fact that Teo didn't want her left in the world with the living rot. To Cheyenne, this is something scary and unknown. She can't prove her worth if she doesn't have the first clue what is going on. 

There are 7 couples. 7 men and 7 women. Cheyenne makes 8. The couples live in homes provided for them by Teo and no-one is quick to make friends with Cheyenne. After all, she's new here and why should she rock the boat? The couples have all been renamed. They are now known by names of lovers in literary fiction; Romeo and Juliet, Marc and Cleo, Bee and Ramus, along with others. Cheyenne is from now on to be known as Persephone. Teo is her Hades. 
I will be honest, at the point in the book where I discovered this, I thought Teo had a bit of a God complex going on. But I later found out there was so  much worse in store. Things that make my heart beat faster and my emotions highten to levels I wasn't aware existed. I literally had palpitations and sweaty palms.

Teo wants these couples to all prove their worth, to earn the vaccine for the virus. They must all do something of equal greatness to prove to him that they should survive and continue to live in Elysian Fields. 
Everyone cowers from Teo. They know that he has Jonas on his side. Jonas is... let's say, a little 'trigger happy' when it comes to his stun gun. He knows Teo wants order and order he shall have, no matter the cost. 
The couples all host soirees in honour of the couple they have been named for. If they do well, they earn the  vaccine. If they do not, then... well, let's just say a great darkness must dwell within Teo for what he does to the couples that don't perform their part adequately. 
Teo treads a very fine line between psychopath and sociopath for he does many evil things and does not seem to have a care about the consequences of his actions. 

The only person Teo seems to truly care about is his Persephone. When she looks at him, she can see that if she plays things right, delivers the right lines to stroke his ego, then he looks upon her with love and devotion. 

Cheyenne thought she was in love with Teo. She is 18, he is 24. She was his student and he was her tutor. It was a forbidden romance but Cheyenne couldn't help falling for the gorgeous, kind, caring man before her. He treads a very fine line between being a besotted man, in love with this woman and an uncaring sociopath who will do as he pleases and tread on anyone that gets in his way. Cheyenne was blind to his faults. She never saw the flaws that are so apparent in hindsight. 

I won't tell you more, suffice to say a lot of this story is not pretty. There are things contained within those streets that people only experience in the worst of nightmares, they wake up drenched in a cold sweat and thank their lucky stars that it wasn't real. 

Mary Gray fills me with shock and awe. This book totally has the WOW factor that bowled me off my feet. It swept me up and kept me engrossed from the very first word until the last. Even now, I cannot forget the chills that ran down my spine, the feeling of insects crawling all over me. When I first picked up this book, I did not foresee the things that would leave me feeling utterly disgusted. The story went from mildly to massively intriguing with the flip of a switch. There was one incident around 36% of the way through and that tipped me over the edge. 
I'll share with you  my final Goodreads update that I wrote just as I had finished the book:
 "WOW! Now that's what I call a f**king book! OMFG! I just... Ugh... No words... Too many words jostling together... No coherent sentences... Loved. This. Book!! Mary Gray has filled me with shock and awe.... Teo... He is master manipulator walking the divide between psychopath & sociopath. Cheyenne... She's... in love... blind... Finally starts to see the light... Amazing story! Fantastic idea behind it..."

This book was an utter masterpiece. How Mary Gray's mind works... WOW I would love for one day to be inside the very most inner working of her mind, just to see what it is that makes her come up with such an amazing story. Her world building is wildly intriguing throughout the book as her cast of characters spring to life. The characters are tangible and 3-dimensional, people that could really exist, like she plucked you and a group of friends up and placed you all in the book. What I liked was the fact that though in the back of my mind, I knew none of it was real, I actually felt drawn right into the pages and felt real emotions for these people. 
My favourite couple were Bee and Ramus. So tragic a tale. But then, Persephone was the main attraction of this book, the main star. She was so determined to help the couples get the vaccines that they so needed. She couldn't rebel openly toward Teo/Hades. She had to do it in discreet ways. She wanted to help every couple to do well in the tasks that Teo set for them so that they had the chance of living a disease free existence. Little did she know what was around the corner. No-one could have predicted going into Elysian Fields that they might not all make it out alive. Teo's master plan was a diabolical one. What it was, you will have to discover for yourself when you buy your copy of The Dollhouse Asylum.

This story had twists and turns that I never saw coming. I thought one thing and BAM! something else came out of the woodwork. I would recommend this book to anyone that enjoys fast-paced, page turning stories where they can expect the unexpected!

Thank you SHP for the ARC. I am so pleased that I got an early copy of this wonderful book. Thank you most of all to Mary Gray who must have the mind of an evil genius. How she created such an elaborate story and surrounded it with twists, turns and utter heartbreak, I will never know. 

Thank you to all who came by to check out my review. Be sure to purchase your copy of TDA here:




Friday, 13 September 2013

*Cover Reveal* Neighbors by Ashleigh Royce

Hi Guys and Girls *waves*

I brought you hear today to give you the cover reveal for Neighbors by fellow Limitless author, Ashleigh Royce.

So without further ado...

*Ta-Dah*


*Fans self* Is this hot or what?

 *Coming September 2013*

"Melissa Baxter was doing fine rebuilding her life after an ugly divorce when her hot, new neighbor, Dylan moves in across the street.
His good looks and charm distract her, and although she tries to entice him to notice her, he seems more interested in a platonic relationship. When he doesn’t pick up on her subtle hints of interest, she decides that a friendship is better than nothing.
Until one day…when a decorating session turns into something more, much more. 
The heat turns up a notch and Melissa races to keep up. But will Melissa’s ex-husband, and Dylan’s step-mother stand in their way of being happy?"


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: 

Ashleigh Royce grew up an only child in Queens, New York. Being alone a lot of the time afforded her many opportunities to create made-up worlds and stories for her to explore. Those fictitious adventures encouraged her to write down her stories and share them with her friends, who loved hearing about the latest details.

Soon, it was time to share her imaginary tales with people outside of her friend circle. And one place in particular she sent one of her creations to, was Limitless Publications, where they fully enjoyed the read. So now that this story – “Neighbors,” an erotic romance - is available, Ashleigh is working hard on the next story, that is, between being a wife to a great guy; a mom to two fabulous kids; an editor for a local magazine; a writer’s workshop moderator; a PTA president, and a full-time paralegal.

Ashleigh welcomes you to send her a message through one of her social websites.

Thank you for coming by for this hot cover reveal today. Hope to see you again soon!




Wednesday, 11 September 2013

*Cover Reveal* USED by Kate Lynne

Hi Guys and Girls *waves*
I'm here to bring to you a cover for fellow Limitless Publishing author Kate Lynne. This cover is for her Getting Inside of V Novella, USED.

Without further ado...

*Ta-Dah*



*Coming October 2013*

*Warning* 18 years+ due to adult situations, language, sexual content, and violence. 

The name's V. I'm beautiful in every sense of the word physically. But on the inside, I'm a black pit. 

If you're expecting a happily ever after, a white picket fence and 2.5 kids; then this isn't the story for you.

There aren't any happily ever afters in the works for me or those whose lives I poison.
 

I hold the key to my pleasure and I'll be damned if I ever give it up again.
 
God forsake those that stand in my way of ultimate gratification.


You may regret me, but you'll never forget me.
 
Use or Be Used, there are no other options.


* This story contains dirty words, dirty sex and an even dirtier twist. *



ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Kate is 23 years old. She is a manager for an assisted living program working with mentally challenged adults. She is currently pursuing a degree in Music Therapy. She loves music, writing and reading.
She has a cockapoo dog named Jezebella that is closest thing she has to a child. She's a handful, but she loves her.
Kate currently resides in Michigan, USA.
She's addicted to Lip Gloss, Oreos and Sleep.

Contact Kate: 






Thank you for coming by for the cover reveal today, Hope to see you again soon!




Friday, 6 September 2013

Interview with Cheryse Durrant - Author of stunning debut novel THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED

Meet author extraordinaire Cheryse Durrant. 


She's the author of


I asked Cher for an interview and she was kind enough to say yes. Folks, this is one amazing lady and it's time her words were shared with the world. Happy Release To My Beautiful Friend. 

Firstly, I wanted to get some background information for you...
Name: Cheryse Durrant
Birthday: Between August 22 and 31 - I have about eight DOBs spread across ten years in the cyber world and I bet everyone's wondering which one's correct (But yes, I am Virgo!)
Place of Birth: Roma, Australia (as opposed to Roma, Italy)
Place of Residence: Bargara by the beach, Queensland, Australia.
Marital Status: Married to both Husband and Cat. They regularly fight over the best spot in the bed. Cat always wins.
Favourite Food: Figs, cherries and mangoes. Korean chapchae, Peking duck and this incredible double crispy skin duck with ginger sauce served at Kacy's Restaurant, Bargara.
Favourite Drink: Half-strength cappuccinos.
Favourite Place: A little farm outside Yuleba, that's where I grew up, but any place is special as long as it's with family.
Favourite Sinful Indulgence: Rich chocolate ice-cream. My favourite is the locally-made Mamminos Double Chocolate Ice-Cream from Childers, it's sinful. Also Sara Lee Ultra Chocolate.
What You Are Most Passionate About?: Bringing joy to people through books and helping bring out the best in people.

Now for the Q&A session:

1) Did you always know you wanted to be an author?
Since I was seven. Growing up, I cherished books and there were always original stories and characters swirling inside my head. I even had imaginary friends. I wrote my first story on one of my Aunty Miriam's walls when I was very young. Sadly, it didn't attract the literary acclaim I deserved, though I was commended for recapping the felt pens afterwards!

2) If you couldn't be an author, what do you think you would be?
A Taloner. I can't even control my chocolate cravings so I'd be putty when it came to that niggly heartlust, but it'd be nice to have super strength and healing - and talons to swipe back at my cat when she's in a nasty mood.

3) Who would you say are your influences, both literary and in life?
My parents and extended family have been amazing role-models. Mum and Dad taught me the importance of family values and commitment - and helped me believe I could achieve whatever I wanted with hard work and persistence. Many authors and journalists have inspired me, both in person and through their books and how-to articles. The list includes LJ Smith, Louise Cusack, Marianne de Pierres and Sandy Curtis.

4) Who are your favourite authors?
Too many to list, from LJ Smith and JK Rowling, to Cassandra Clare and Marianne de Pierres. My favourite childhood author was John Christopher (the late Sam Youd).

5) What is your favourite book?
That Highlander film was wrong when it said “there can be only one…” My fave book is whatever I'm reading at the time (as long as it's a good book), but I'm particularly fond of the Vampire Diaries (LJ Smith), Burn Bright (Marianne de Pierres) and the Sword of the Spirits (John Christopher). My favourite fairy tale was always Beauty & the Beast and my fave childhood novel was The Ordinary Princess (M.M.Kaye) - even back then I liked fairy tales with a difference. I'm also (at least I was when I had time) a big romance reader so there's a lot of single titles on my bookshelves that I'll never part with.

6) Is THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED the first thing you ever wrote?
As a child, I wrote lots of short stories and often published them in my elaborate “Cheryse” magazines, handmade from butcher's paper and illustrated with cut-out pictures. I started penning my first novel (a YA high fantasy) when I was 14 but didn't finish that first draft until my late 20s. The first novel I ever completed was a YA sci fi (about an Aussie superhero - of course!) when I was 16. Since then, I've written nine novels, spread across various genres. Some of them I hope to rewrite one day but others will remain curiosities for my nieces and those I leave behind.

7) Where did you get your inspiration for THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED?
A child's fingers curled around the outside rim of a partially-open coffin… my courageous Heart Hunters heroine Shahkara evolved from that single, spooky image after it flashed through my mind more than five years ago. Those tiny, lifeless fingers didn't belong to my Shahkara, but their discovery forced her to unearth and expose a horrifying cover-up - which originally led to a failed short story.

8) What do you mean “failed”?
I'd just won an Australian-wide story competition with my fantasy short, The Pool of Rathorne, and I wanted to write another prize-winning story. The fingers curled around the coffin inspired me to write about Shahkara searching for the culprite behind a trail of missing bodies in her castle home on Gorias. The twist for the reader was that, by the end, she found the Taloner and killed him with her own talons - deftly revealing that she, too, was a Taloner and harbouring her own deadly secret inside the castle. The story couldn't work because to only reveal her as a half-Taloner at the end meant I was cheating my readers of her true viewpoint. Taloners smell, taste and sense differently to humans and my readers are smart. I realised I needed to reveal who and what she was from the beginning and thus THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED was born.

9) Did you always want to write within this genre and did it come easily?
As a teenager, I read voraciously across genres but I LOVED fantasy and sci fi, especially Dr Who and Blake's Seven, the only non-animated spec fic shows that screened on our one-channel TV. It was natural for me to dream up stories about teenagers set in spec fic situations. As I reached late high school and university, I branched out into high fantasy - Tolkien, Feist, Eddings. I was overwhelmed by their epic plots and landscapes and stopped writing because my “little stories” could never compare to their greatness. About 15 years ago, I was writing in another genre when suspense author Sandy Curtis read the prologue of one of my fantasy manuscripts and encouraged me to return to my first love… spec fic, but with a strong dollop of romance (because why spoil a perfectly good story by not including true love?).

10) How long did it take to write THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED?
Shahkara started to evolve when I wrote Cry of the Taloner (my failed short story) back in 2008. I spent 2009 and 2010 writing the novel. I'd wake up at 4am to sneak in two hours of writing before getting ready for my full-time day job at 6am. A lot of days that didn't happen, but I finally completed the book that Christmas. When the acquisitions editor of one of the big six publishing houses loved my partial and requested my full manuscript in May 2010, they suggested I lengthen it from 60,000 to 85,000 words so I spent another seven months re-writing it with a secondary story arc, another new character and a revamped ending. The story languished inside this publishing house for 19 months until another publishing company, Clan Destine Press made me an offer in August 2012. I then spent another six months polishing it for publication. During that time I rewrote every sentence and sometimes I spent days on the one scene. Fortunately, by the time the copy editor saw it, it only needed a few more tweaks.


11) Do you find the voice of a character comes into your head and begs to be written?
All the time! It's why I'm driven to write. You hear their voices, their dialogue, and you're forced write for fear you'll go mad if you don't!

12) Is there a character you most identify with and why?
I'm a very different personality to Shahkara but I strongly relate to her because, like her, I'm a fish out of water. As a child, I tolerated mustering and branding but didn't relate to the farming environment my sisters loved. As a teen, I spent my lunch hours in the library because I couldn't understand my peers and now, even as a “grown-up on the outside”, I often feel out of my depth, especially when it comes to music and fashion, culture and technology. But when I write, I've found my pond. I love swimming there with my imagination and my characters. Books, both reading and writing them, has given me my place in the world - and I think a lot of readers and writers feel that way.

13) Was there ever a time you felt you wanted/needed to scrap the project?
Interestingly, THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED is the novel I've ever written that I've never scrapped. There were times when I doubted my ability and wanted to give up, but I knew I had to finish it. Author Isaac Bashevis Singer once said “Every creator painfully experiences the chasm between his inner vision and its ultimate expression.” I disagree. Sometimes, our ultimate expression can end up finer than our inner vision and that's what I eventually achieved with THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED, even when there were many, many days I thought that I could never do.

14) How many drafts were there before the FINAL draft?
Roughly four, but within that there were some scenes that were rewritten a lot more times. The fifth draft was my final draft, not including copy edits.

15) Did you ever end up cutting a character or a scene that you later wish you'd kept?
There are scenes that I haven't wanted to remove because I'm personally attached, but I knew removing them made the storyline more believable for the reader. One day, I'm going to blog about these delicious deleted scenes. People with my sense of quirky humour will probably appreciate at them. Other readers? Maybe not so much…

16) Did you ever cut anything that you later put back in?
There are a few scenes in THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED that I tried to cut during my final draft but my husband Shane made me put them back in. They all pertained to non-main character viewpoints: Carly's kidnapper, pathologist John Darcy and the Taloner Coven gathered in their secret chambers. I feared they might be too much for my reader and draw them out of my story-world, but Shane insisted they added flavour. My Clan Destine Press editor Samantha Christie liked them and kept them in the manuscript.

17) Do you spend a lot of time writing things you don't include in the final draft? If so, were there any regrets?
I think my record is writing 45,000 words on one of my previous novels before I realised the point of the book. I had to hit delete and start again at Chapter 1 - but that was an exciting moment for me - realising where I was going. I've always been a pantser, but I'm now more structured in my planning and spend time working on my characters and their motivations before I get too deep into the book. I do wish I'd learnt some of these tips earlier in life (like not spending six months polishing two chapters at the start of a book only to discover a year later, when I've written the first draft of that book, that those chapters don't even belong in the story anymore). But there's no regrets. It doesn't matter how long it takes to become a published author. The view at the top is still magnificent J

18) How did you come to be published by Clan Destine Press?
I'm a volunteer for our city's annual Bundaberg WriteFest, a day of workshops for aspiring and emerging writers. Each year, writers get to 'pitch' their manuscript to a publisher or editor. Last year, Clan Destine Press Publisher Lindy Cameron flew from Melbourne to interview the shortlist - I made the shortlist. Three months later, I was at the Gold Coast for a writers conference when Lindy flew in and offered me a three-book contract. Then we went shoe shopping. You can read about it here… (http://cherysedurrant.com/when-publishers-land-and-offer-you-a-book-contract/)

19) How long did it take for you to become a published author?
A LONG TIME, but it was worth it J

20) Who has been your support throughout that process?
Read my acknowledgements page! Many, many people have helped me on my journey, but I'm especially grateful to my family and friends, including authors like Sandy Curtis, Louise Cusack, Dean J Anderson, David Russell, KA Sheather and LJ (Lisa) Smith (The Vampire Diaries), who read THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED when I entered it into her novel-writing contest in 2011. Lisa's belief that it was a good book and deserved to be published helped me through the tough times. Because she wasn't a biased friend or family member, I trusted her opinion more.

21) Now THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED is out there, do you think it will do well?
I hope so. My Publisher believes in it, but there are a lot of other fabulous books out there. Publishing is a dicey game and sometimes there's no reason why one book sells two hundred copies and another two million. Authors need to be pro-active these days and they rely, more than ever, on friends and fans so please spread THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED good news. If you enjoy my book, please let others know about my Heart Hunters series - and my fabulous Hearts & Talons Tour and giveaway. All the details are here. http://cherysedurrant.com/hearts-talons-tour-offers-four-months-of-fabulous-prizes-2/

22) Are you critical of your own work?
Super critical. So critical that there were times I almost gave up, but I couldn't. Writing is what compels and propels me. Being a journalist and sub-editor for 15-plus years taught me to be extra critical of my product. I hope this has helped hone THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED into something unique.

23) Do you have anything that you can share with us about the future of the Heart Hunters series or its characters?
Penning THE GHOST SHE KILLED, the second book in my Heart Hunters series, is a wild ride. I'm loving every minute of it. I get to see my characters tested and developed further and Carly plays an integral role. Wait until you find out what she gets up to! This story also has some fabulous settings, including a huge, fictitious casino/hotel complex in the heart of Brisbane. Let's just say I was inspired when I stayed at Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas a couple of years ago and wanted to bring a little bit of LV Roman empire Down Under. This is also where my Heart Hunters series evolves from Young Adult to New Adult. There's also lots of twists and turns. Every. Single. Page.

24) When do you hope to publish THE GHOST SHE KILLED?
Next year, but I'm a slow writer and editor so I'll send you a memo… If readers want to know when it's coming out, they can email me via cheryse (at) quietdawn (dot) com and I'll add them to my personal mailing list. I'll send out a newsletter a month or so before its launch. While you're at it, drop me a line and let me know what you thought of the book. It's always great to hear feedback.

25) How many books do you expect for the Heart Hunters series?
I'm a pantser so I haven't a clue. Max and Shahkara's Elnara story arc finishes at the end of book three, THE WORLD SHE LOST (even though THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED is a complete story in itself, with a happy ending). I suspect Carly will take over as the main viewpoint character in book four but I won't know for a while. I'm a bit believer in not taking a story further than it's meant to go, I'm not into 'jumping the shark', but I think I've definitely got enough fodder to give Carly her own trilogy once Max and Shahkara get their happy ending after completing their major quest. I love writing so I can find out what's going to happen, too. The twists and turns always surprise me!

26) What do you think you will do once the series is over?
There's a lot of new ideas spinning around inside my head but I'm trying to shelve them all so I don't get distracted. Once I finish my Heart Hunters series (or in-between times), I'm keen to rewrite two of my old manuscripts, a children's trilogy and another YA trilogy. Both are crossworld fantasies. Do you see a re-occuring pattern?

Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to answer these questions. I am sure your readers will be just as interested as I am to find out the answers.

Personal note to Cher:

Cher, thank you for letting me read THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED. I absolutely loved it from beginning to end!
I am truly excited about THE GHOST SHE KILLED, I know it will be amazing.
You are most definitely a ROCK STAR of the literary world. I know you will always continue to shine! :)

I heart you Doll <3

Keren xoxo

Thank you everryone who came by to read this interview. I hope you enjoyed finding out more about Cheryse and her debut novel. 
I was lucky enough to be the first person to read this novel (after her immediate family  and friends) and I am so honoured.

Hearts & Talons giveaway celebrates launch of Heart Hunters series
To celebrate the launch of her debut novel The Blood She Betrayed, Cheryse Durrant and her publisher, Clan Destine Press, are offering four giveaways as part of the Hearts & Talons tour running until November.
Prizes include a $AU50 Amazon gift voucher, a $AU50 Clan Destine Press (CDP) book pack, a $AU130 heart-shaped crystal pendant, signed paperbacks, swag, and the chance to have a character named after you in Durrant’s second Heart Hunters book, The Ghost She Killed.
To be part of the draw, readers must email proof of purchase (a receipt, screen grab or their order confirmation number) to cheryse (at) quietdawn (dot) org.
People who buy the book can gain extra entries in the Hearts & Talons giveaway by writing a review of The Blood She Betrayed and emailing the online link to Durrant, and/or emailing the Hearts & Talons promotion to 20 friends (cc’d to Durrant).
What you can win: Hearts & Talons giveaway
September – $AU50 Clan Destine Press book pack + signed paperback
October pre-paperback launch – Get a character named after you in Cheryse Durrant’s next novel, The Ghost She Killed + a signed paperback.
October – $AU50 Amazon gift voucher + signed paperback
November – $AU130  9ct gold crystal pendant + signed paperback
NB: Entrants are automatically entered into every month of the promotion.

To buy The Blood She Betrayed:
The Blood She Betrayed eBook is available from Clan Destine Press (http://www.clandestinepress.com.au/content/blood-she-betrayed-ebook), Amazon, iTunes and Kobo.
The paperback can be pre-ordered via Clan Destine Press (http://www.clandestinepress.com.au/content/blood-she-betrayed ) or Booktopia (http://www.booktopia.com.au/search.ep?keywords=Cheryse+Durrant&productType=917504), but will be available in all good bookstores from October.

To contact Cheryse:
Twitter  @CheryseDurrant



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