Friday, May 25, 2018

Book Blitz: The Unity Game by Leonora Meriel

About the Book:

WHAT IF THE EARTH YOU KNEW WAS JUST THE BEGINNING?

A New York banker is descending into madness. 

A being from an advanced civilization is racing to stay alive. 

A dead man must unlock the secrets of an unknown dimension to save his loved ones. 

From the visions of Socrates in ancient Athens, to the birth of free will aboard a spaceship headed to Earth, The Unity Game tells a story of hope and redemption in a universe more ingenious and surprising than you ever thought possible. 

Metaphysical thriller and interstellar mystery, this is a 'complex, ambitious and thought-provoking novel' from an exciting and original new voice in fiction.

Book Links:


Meet the Characters:

The Setting: Earth

New York City. The 1990s. One of the world’s leading investment banks.


The Setting: Space



A distant planet. A dry surface orbited by three red moons and circling a distant sun. An advanced civilization living in underground chambers.



The Setting: Death



An open door. A library. A room of knowledge. A garden of dazzling color. The answers to every question that has ever been asked on Earth.




Meet David



A brilliant scientist and wildly ambitious, David abandoned an academic path to follow the glow of Wall Street money. From a small town in Canada, he is now determined to make the riches he has given up his scientific talents for. He is always on edge, he must prove he is better than the other bankers, he has to win the best deals. However, he is easy pickings for the multi-million dollar bosses who see how they can use a greedy, naïve young man for their own purposes. David falls further into risk, mistakes and desperation, clutching at anything around him as his dreams and world falls apart.




Meet Noe-bouk



Dry dust. Three red moons. A member of one of the most advanced civilizations in the universe, taught to believe that all the answers come naturally from the incontrovertible logic of the greatest good. Now, facing death, Noe-bouk decides to find out if there is something more than what he has been taught. Accepting a place on a space ship, the further he gets from the moons of Home Planet the more he understands that he knows nothing at all…




Meet Alisdair



A respected lawyer. An adoring grandfather. Alisdair collapses outside his law offices in London and finds himself standing beside his unmoving corpse. He feels wonderful! He spots some wide open doors and bounds through them to discover a library, a garden, and his dead wife. All his life he has burned with the questions of the universe: what is the purpose of existence? What is good and evil? How far does the infinite stretch? With an afterworld guide and his wife at his side, his only limits now are to come up with new questions as all of his horizons expand beyond imagination…



Meet Elspeth



Beautiful, young, angry. Apart from her beloved grandfather Alisdair, Elspeth has been let down by everyone in her life. She’s rejected her parents and their easy choices, she sees no meaning in the structures of society. She has always felt lost, and now the death of her grandfather is forcing her to make choices. With some money he has left her, she decides to follow a feeling and go on an adventure.



Meet Socrates



Legendary philosopher, pion of bravery and morality, a figure so strong his ideas and presence pervade the centuries and the dimensions of time and space. Who else would Alisdair call upon in the afterworld to help his granddaughter Elspeth, than the man he has revered his entire life, and whose teachings guided him? Yes, Elspeth can be helped, but she must be brought together with another soul – one who has truly lost their path.



Reviews for The Unity Game

 “A complex, ambitious and thought-provoking novel.” ~ Kirkus Reviews

“Elegantly written, expertly crafted and a moving message. I found this book very hard to put down. Moving and poignant.” ~ Lilly, Amazon US reviewer

“An engrossing, unique, and totally bizarre tale! I could not stop reading it once I started. Such a beautiful take on the afterlife, and its connection to those still living. A unity game, indeed!”~ Brenna, Goodreads reviewer


About the Author:

Leonora Meriel grew up in London and studied literature at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland and Queen’s University in Canada. She worked at the United Nations in New York, and then for a multinational law firm.
In 2003 she moved from New York to Kyiv, where she founded and managed Ukraine’s largest Internet company. She studied at Kyiv Mohyla Business School and earned an MBA, which included a study trip around China and Taiwan, and climbing to the top of Hoverla, Ukraine’s highest peak and part of the Carpathian Mountains. She also served as President of the International Women’s Club of Kyiv, a major local charity.
During her years in Ukraine, she learned to speak Ukrainian and Russian, witnessed two revolutions and got to know an extraordinary country at a key period of its development.
In 2008, she decided to return to her dream of being a writer, and to dedicate her career to literature. In 2011, she completed The Woman Behind the Waterfall, set in a village in western Ukraine. While her first novel was with a London agent, Leonora completed her second novel The Unity Game, set in New York City and on a distant planet.
Leonora currently lives in Barcelona and London and has two children. She is working on her third novel.

Contact the Author:



Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Author Interview: Katja Vartiainen, Author of Half Done Fun





Katja Vartiainen is a Master of Fine Arts, painting. She calls herself a multi-dilettante because she  has done doodle books, illustration, two graphic novels, teaching, and even upholstery. Her visual inspiration comes from fine arts as well as from everything on this curious, tragicomic piece of  a rock, and its creatures floating in space.

With her husband they share a taste for humour, cats, and nature. They live in Southern Germany.




When did you first realize that you wanted to be a writer/a storyteller?
Well, let's put aside the fact that I have been foremostly a painter, and every picture is worth a thousand words. Or so they say...
My husband and I joked about our kitchen's messiness. Clearly, the elves hadn't done their job- and then that led into a picture book that my husband wrote and I illustrated. I realized then, that I had all these extra plot twists and ideas, and so, I decided to continue the story and did my first graphic novel. So, I started late, that was 2015, I was 40 round years old.

What motivates you to write and where does your inspiration come from?
Some ideas don't seem to leave me alone. So, I have put them into creative work. I would like to wake people up to the ecological mess we are in, but I don't want to get too preachy. Humour helps to get the medicine down. I hope.
I believe everything influences everything. My inspiration is thus everything I have come into touch with.

How did you come up with the idea for your current story?
My last book, 'Half Done Fun', is actually a drawing book. The third one. It came about when I realized that people want draw, and rehearse drawing, but don't have the energy to start or to choose what to draw. So, in 'Half Done Fun', as the title hints, the pictures are vertically half done. You can relax and concentrate on the drawing.

What question do you wish that someone would ask about your book(s), but nobody has? Write it out here, and then answer it.
Isn't this too difficult for kids of 11, 12 etc years old?
No. Many people think that you can  give kids bad paper, cheap colors, insufficient models and tacky exercises to teach them art and creativity, but this is all wrong. Even though the 11 year old doesn't know how to finish the picture perfectly, you give her/him the correct example. And decent materials!

Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it?
Yes. Writing is new to me. Painting has always been easy to start, but since I've written two graphic novels with my second language, I have had a feeling of inadequacy at times. Also, since I do both the text and the illustration, I have hard time choosing which to start first.  What to do? Just do. Write, write, write. What a waste of time thinking about that you can't write, when you could be writing.

What are your current/future projects?
Current/future project is an old story, or myth, or teaching, I want to rewrite and draw. Graphic novel meets maybe a picture book kind of thing. But it will take time.

Why did you choose to write in your particular field or genre? If you write more than one, how do you balance them?
It seemed that comics/graphic novels would be the perfect medium for me,  a painter, who wants to tell a story. And even though I had clear panels in my books, the possibilities to play with a page seem endless. As for the doodle books- well, I feel a bit of a missionary. I also have studied art pedagogy for a year. To draw is so amazing and fulfilling, I want people to try it and find new sides of themselves. Especially in our age of swiping screens.
As to the field IN graphic novels/comics, I naturally went into comedy, parody, because I like to laugh. I find the world a tragicomic. Through comedy one can tackle a lot of serious stuff, but it is difficult. Real humour requires intelligence but can't lack character either.

Are you traditional or self-published, and what process did you go through to get your book published?
I'm indie, I guess because I could not wait to get my stuff out there. The internet and digitalization has brought wonderful possibilities and I wanted to take advantage of them. We did try to publish our picture book (for adults, but no sex) traditionally, and I realized how difficult it is for books with colours and the whole concept. It seemed valuable time was waisted, so we went through Createspace, Amazon, and I continued with that. I also realized I enjoyed to have the control of it all. But I'm not a fanatic, I could publish traditionally if contracts were good. It definitely seems to have its benefits.

How do you think you have evolved as a person/author because of your writing and do you believe your writing has helped others, how/why?
I found perseverance in myself, in amounts, I could not believe, in doing my books. I learned how to make comics digitally, from the internet.  I learned layout programs, speech bubbles, etc etc. I made lots of mistakes. I learned a huge amount of technical stuff, and then the whole 'getting the message out there' side. It has been very interesting, time consuming, but rewarding. I hope my husband agrees, ha ha. I've also found new authors and comic book creators whose work I enjoy.
I have gotten really good feedback from my doodle books. The comics as well, but they are a weird genre. They have an ecological message with a smile, and I hope people find them.

Do you believe there is value in a review? Do you believe they are under rated, over rated, or don’t matter at all?
If you have no reviews, it's as if your book seems to have lethal, infectious disease, and everyone avoids it. Regarding Amazon, there's a certain amount of reviews  that makes your book appear more frequently in the search.  It would be great that people would take a risk with a book, but we so often want the pros and the cons...Reviews do count. With comics it's also word to mouth that puts your work out there.

What is the intended audience for you book?
For 'Half Done Fun', 11 years upwards, also adults, who want to practice drawing, or relax by doing something  a bit creative. The graphic novels have some cursing, so +12.

If you had the chance to get one message out there to reach readers all over the world, what would that message be?
Express yourself, AND save the planet!

What would you like to write about that you have never written about before?
An actual fictional book, with text only, and no support from images.

Do you have a subject/genre you would never write about, why?
Never say never, but I think there's a few! Zombies/horror/gore- they give me nightmares. Romance, maybe. But, I feel it's a crime to make big statements of this kind.
What makes your book stand out from the crowd?
This and the previous doodle books are pretty neutral in style. It's on purpose, because the idea is not that you draw like me, but you find out HOW YOU draw. My books are hopeful.

Do you read? Who are your favourite authors and how have they influenced your writing style?
I read all the time. I have several books I am reading in the mornings and evenings, and I love to read. There are so many good authors. From the traditional, I find myself fascinated at the moment by Doris Lessing's sci-fi, Ursula K. le Guin, Kurt Vonnegut, Rosa Liksom. Joseph Campbell, although non-fiction. I've enjoyed from comics: The Mountain, Papergirls, Saga- and so many more. This is impossible! Jonathan Dunne is an indie favourite, and then there's poetry, and all these preferences change during months.

Tell us three fun facts about yourself/ your book.
I'll mix them. 1. I love cats 2. I do homages in my graphic novels to my favourite  series etc.  3. Half Done Fun got started by the title. It just popped I to my head, so a book had to follow.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with your readers?
I post my art every Thursday on social media, and my web page, for you to enjoy. And my news! And I'm in Goodreads, etc etc, meet you there! Thanks for the Interview, this was fun!






Half Done Fun is an entertaining drawing/doodle book that makes it easier for those who want to practice their drawing and observation skills. It offers symmetrical (or closely symmetrical) things, humans, and animals that are half drawn so you can focus on finishing the other half and not worrying about 'what to draw'.

For children over 11 years and adults, as well.






                Amazon  *  Goodreads *  Facebook  *  Instagram  *  Pinterest


Thank you for this amazing interview! I wish you success for all your future works. Keep writing!








Book Blitz: Castles in the Air by Sangeet Sharma

About the Book:

Publisher: Rumour Book India
Edition: First edition (2017)
ISBN: 978-1945563850
Genre: Fiction
Format: Paperback
Pages: 234
Price: 299/-




Laughter is said to be the best elixir and the book is a satire on architecture written by one who knows the bricks and concrete of the profession by heart.

The author, an architect himself, delves into the journey of a professional practice. The book is witty with acerbic humor.

Word by word, sentence by sentence, page by page, every scene unfolds like a screenplay, leaving the reader amazed with the brutalities of life in architecture, and life itself.

Book Links:

Reviews for the Book:







About the Author:


Sangeet Sharma is a practicing architect in Chandigarh. He is a partner in SD Sharma & Associates, a well-known firm of the region founded by his father Ar. SD Sharma, an eminent Architect. Widely acknowledged and awarded Ar. Sangeet Sharma commands an undisputed international reputation in profession. Carrying forward the legacy and vocabulary established by his father he is fascinated by geometrical forms. 
By looking at every drawn line as built spaces he follows a certain rationale to his reflective practice. His buildings are based on sustainable applications.
He is a multifaceted personality. He is a poet, Architectural critic, writer, artist and author. He has authored Architecture, Life and Me, published by Rupa and Co., a memoir that takes an all-round view of the profession.


Contact the Author:





Monday, May 21, 2018

Book Blitz: Daughter of the Sun by Zoe Kalo

Daughter of the Sun
~ Cult of the Cat Series Book 1 ~


About the Book:



Title: Daughter of the Sun
Series: Cult of the Cat Series, Book 1
Author: Zoe Kalo
Genre: YA Contemporary Fantasy / Paranormal
Word Count: 93,000 words
No. of Pages: 330



Mystery, adventure, a hint of romance, and the delicious sweep of magic...

Sixteen-year-old Trinity was born during a solar eclipse and left at the doorsteps of a convent along with a torn piece of papyrus covered with ancient symbols. Raised by nuns in the English countryside, she leads a quiet life until she’s whisked away to the Island of Cats and a grandmother she never knew. 

But before they can get to know each other, her grandmother dies. All that Trinity has left is a mysterious eye-shaped ring. And a thousand grieving cats. As Trinity tries to solve the enigma of the torn papyrus, she discovers a world of bloody sacrifices and evil curses, and a prophecy that points to her and her new feline abilities. 

Unwilling to believe that any of the Egyptian gods could still be alive, Trinity turns to eighteen-year-old Seth and is instantly pulled into a vortex of sensations that forces her to confront her true self—and a horrifying destiny.


Get Your Copy of this Book. Available for FREE for a LIMITED TIME ONLY! 


About the Author:




Storyteller at heart...

A certified bookworm and ailurophile, Zoe Kalo has always been obsessed with books and reading. The pleasure of writing and sharing her fantasy worlds has remained. Today, Zoe passes her stories to you with lots of mystery, adventure, a hint of romance, and the delicious sweep of magic.

Currently, she balances writing with spending time with her family, taking care of her clowder of cats, and searching for the perfect bottle of pinot noir.


Contact the Author:







Thursday, May 17, 2018

Book Blitz: 3 Peaks of Happiness by AiR






Book Info:

Publisher: AiR Foundation
ISBN: 9789352814466
Genre: Non-Fiction / Self Help
Format: Paperback
Pages: 167
Price: 200/-






Book Blurb:


The whole world is seeking happiness. Who doesn't want to be happy? But is everyone happy? Discover the most fulfilling journey to bliss and ultimate everlasting happiness.
There are three peaks of happiness. Most of humanity lives and dies on the first peak, being glad and being sad, experiencing joy and sorrow like a yo-yo.


Twenty percent of humanity is fortunate to live a life of contentment on the Second Peak of Happiness that offers tremendous joy and peace.



A small fraction of humanity goes on a quest for the third peak. The Third Peak not only gives one eternal bliss, everlasting joy, and peace, but also gives one freedom from problems, worries, and pain!



This book is a personal experience of such a traveler who climbed all the three peaks. He shares his journey and shows you the way to the Third and Ultimate Peak of Happiness.

“You can be as happy as you want to be. True Happiness, Ultimate Bliss lies beyond a pursuit of Pleasure and Peace. It is experienced by those who Discover the Purpose of Life!”



Read an Excerpt:



Chapter 1


Happiness is a Journey
The whole world is seeking happiness. In fact, it seems like we are all on an eternal journey to destination happiness. Yes, happiness is a journey, but not many people know that it is the path itself. You cannot get happiness, but you can be happy. While there is no one on earth who doesn’t seek this treasure, there are only a few who truly understand what happiness is.

Do you know that you can choose to be happy or unhappy? Happiness doesn’t just happen; it is a choice you make”  -RVM

What is Happiness?
  Happiness is a state of mind. It’s a state of joy, bliss and cheer. It is an emotion- energy in motion- that makes one glad, just as unhappiness is an emotion, that makes one sad. A happy person is joyous and he smiles and laughs just as unhappy person frowns and cries. We feel happy and it shows. Happiness radiates through cheerfulness and enthusiasm. Although happiness may be a common word, it is often quite tricky to define or explain “Happiness”.

Everyone wants to be happy
Who doesn’t want to be happy? Everybody on earth wants happiness, whether one is a baby or an adult, be it man or a woman, Indian or American, black or white, or rich or poor, who doesn’t want to be happy? Everybody alive on this planet seeks happiness. Not just human being, it seems even animals wants to be happy. We see that dogs wag its tail in joy, birds fly in the sky, fish swirl in the water, and the peacock open their wings to dance in bliss. Don’t you think they all seek happiness too? Everybody wants to be happy.

If you were to ask different people around the globe, what they are seeking, you would get different answers from each one. But if you further ask them, why they are seeking it, you would get a common answer from all- “Happiness”. The goal of life is happiness. Everyone wants to be happy, and people do different things to achieve this one objective. To a businessman, a successful business brings happiness. To artists, it may be a creative product that is born out of their imagination. A student may be happy with excellence in exams, just as a politicians is blissful on winning an election. We all do different things, but whatever we do, the goal is one: We all want to be happy!

If you have not learnt anything, but have learnt one thing that the goal of life is to be happy, you have learnt everything!” - RVM 


About the Author:

AiR – Atman in Ravi, or the Soul in Ravi, is an embodied soul whose only mission in life is to realize the Truth and help people realize the Truth. 
He was born on October 15, 1966 in Bangalore, as Ravi V. Melwani. At a very young age, he mastered the craft of business and became a very successful businessman who revolutionized retailing in India with the stores Kids Kemp, Big Kids Kemp, and Kemp Fort. After making millions, he realized that life is not just about making money. He shut down his business at the age of 40, transformed his life to RVM living by the RVM philosophy – Rejoice, Value Life, and Make a Difference. He started doing H.I.S. work – Humanitarian, Inspirational and Spiritual work. His mission was to “Make a Difference” in this world before his journey was over.








Friday, May 11, 2018

Book Blitz: The Woman Behind the Waterfall by Leonara Meriel

About the Book:




Heartbreak and transformation in the beauty of a Ukrainian village.

For seven-year old Angela, happiness is exploring the lush countryside around her home in western Ukraine. Her wild imagination takes her into birds and flowers, and into the waters of the river.
All that changes when, one morning, she sees her mother crying. As she tries to find out why, she is drawn on an extraordinary journey into the secrets of her family, and her mother's fateful choices.
Can Angela lead her mother back to happiness before her innocence is destroyed by the shadows of a dark past?
Beautiful, poetic and richly sensory, this is a tale that will haunt and lift its readers.


Book Links:



Meet the Characters:

The Setting

Ukraine, a village deep in the countryside. A picturesque, verdant landscape. The houses are beautiful but have few amenities: water is gathered from the well, clothes are washed by hand, and the “outhouse” toilet is in the garden. Life is hard work here, and close to nature.

The Language

There are many Ukrainian words in the novel, especially emphasizing the names of endearment Ukrainian people give to each other. Lastivka is “little swallow”; zaika is ‘little rabbit”; harnenka is “my beautiful one.”

Meet Lyudmilla

Lyuda is a beautiful woman in her early twenties who has suffered some hard knocks early on. Pregnant at just sixteen, she left school and the child’s father moved into their house in the village. Her father died, and her mother soon after, and Lyuda found herself a teenager loaded down with the pressures of a baby, looking after a house, and a man who expected her to cook for him and be the light-hearted girl he fell in love with. Eventually, the situation grows intolerable for him and he abandons her. At seventeen, she is entirely alone with a small baby. She falls into a deep cycle of depression and self-blame, feeling that her life is over and that she is at fault. She doesn’t let anyone close to her.
It is only when her daughter Angela is a little older – aged seven – that she starts to notice how sad her mother is.  She decides to do something about it.

Meet Angela

Seven-year-old girl Angela has been left alone to do as she likes for most of her life. Her mother makes sure her dresses are clean and her hair is untangled, but she is free to play as she wishes. She has a wild imagination and she sees no boundaries between her thoughts and the world around her: she flies in the body of a bird, she becomes the wind, she enters a storm – she is pure spirit and possibility.
When she starts to notice her mother crying every time she is alone, Angela is determined to find out why, and to help her mother regain the happiness she herself feels. At the heart of her investigation are questions that now begin to haunt her: Where is her father? Why does no one come to the house? Why does her mother cry when she thinks no one can see her?
When Angela meets the spirit of her grandmother, they come up with a plan to help Lyuda.

Meet Zoryana

The name Zoryana, which comes from the Ukrainian root zorya, means star, dawn, youth, day or spring. Zoryana has returned to the Earth in spirit form after seeing the unhappiness of her daughter and her failure to move past her teenage mistakes.
Zoryana feels that she did not prepare her daughter enough for the real world before she died, and she sees her struggling and unhappy. She wants to show her that life has highs and lows and that she must choose a new path for herself. She connects with her granddaughter Angela, who is not daunted by meeting the spirit of a relative, and together they help Lyuda to understand and see the joy in her life.

Meet Kolya

Nicolai, or Kolya, lives next door to Lyuda and brews home-made vodka in his shed. He sells it to her and catches rabbits for her to eat. He was a childhood friend of her mother, Zoryana, and he hates to see her so unhappy. He’d love to help her, but she pushes him away. When he finally makes a terrible mistake, there is a high price to pay.

Reviews for The Woman Behind the Waterfall

“Readers looking for a classic tale of love and loss will be rewarded with an intoxicating world” ~~ Kirkus Reviews
“The language is lyrical and poetic and, in places, begs to be read repeatedly for the sheer joy of it… A literary work of art.” ~~ Fiona Adams, The Richmond Magazine
“Rich and poetic in detail, it is an often dreamy, oneiric narrative rooted in an exaltation of nature… A lovely novel.” ~~ IndieReader


About the Author:


Leonora Meriel grew up in London and studied literature at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland and Queen’s University in Canada. She worked at the United Nations in New York, and then for a multinational law firm.
In 2003 she moved from New York to Kyiv, where she founded and managed Ukraine’s largest Internet company. She studied at Kyiv Mohyla Business School and earned an MBA, which included a study trip around China and Taiwan, and climbing to the top of Hoverla, Ukraine’s highest peak and part of the Carpathian Mountains. She also served as President of the International Women’s Club of Kyiv, a major local charity.
During her years in Ukraine, she learned to speak Ukrainian and Russian, witnessed two revolutions and got to know an extraordinary country at a key period of its development.
In 2008, she decided to return to her dream of being a writer, and to dedicate her career to literature. In 2011, she completed The Woman Behind the Waterfall, set in a village in western Ukraine. While her first novel was with a London agent, Leonora completed her second novel The Unity Game, set in New York City and on a distant planet.
Leonora currently lives in Barcelona and London and has two children. She is working on her third novel.

Contact the Author:






Thursday, May 10, 2018

Book Blitz: Skarlet Kiss by Elise Whyles

About the Book:



Can one who served the enemy find love in the arms of a condemned man?


Una has spent her life serving Amuliana, the goddess of immortals. Now she stands on the brink of a change, one that can her give back the life she lost to Amuliana's meddling. But the change that comes will shatter the peaceful existence she knows and give her a new understanding of love and life. Unbeknownst to Una, her ancestors were the Forsaken, immortals who were cast out for the crime of a jealous vampire general.



Liam, an outcast among the dragon clans, has spent centuries seeking the one who condemned him for a crime he did not commit. When he comes face to face with Una, he must make a difficult choice - seek revenge or save a pure heart from the darkness threatening their worlds.



The dragon warrior and the human girl will unite to face enemies they've never experienced as a fallen vampire general's army stalks them. As Una gains strength, her immortal gifts are returned and she becomes a threat to the imprisoned general who's seeking power over the immortal world. He can't afford to let Una survive, because her life will ultimately cost him his.



Together, Liam and Una must fight their way back to the vampire world and the safety offered by her sister. Can love survive amid the treachery and danger, or has Liam finally found his mate only to lose her to the evil plaguing their worlds?



Book Link:



Read an Excerpt:


"Do not dawdle, Una, our time grows short." Harsh, bitter, Anagor's voice scraped along her nerves as she hurried through the stone corridor. Stale air and dust sat in her throat, gagging her as she scurried among the debris. The sound of claws on stone sent shivers up her spine as some unseen vermin darted from her path. The heavy cloak she wore hid the shimmering fabric of her priestess robes but did little to battle the cold soaking through to her flesh.

"'Tis cold, this place we are being sent." Una shivered and ducked beneath a heavy beam. Her hand pressed against the icy stone as she struggled to maintain her balance on the uneven ground.
"You may think so."
Anagor's sneer pricked at the ready temper she'd struggled to control. Biting her lip, she kept the sharp retort to herself. She glanced up, her gaze falling on the thick wooden door Anagor stood before. He grinned as he gripped the handle and pulled. Dust and pebbles rained down as it creaked and groaned in protest before scraping along the ground to open. Shock ripped through Una as the pale streak of light spread along the frozen ground, wrapping around her with its icy chill.
Snow slapped at the ground, swirling in a maelstrom of white. It blew through the portal into the opening, piling around her sandal clad feet. Teeth chattering, she rubbed at her arms as Anagor stepped back, reaching for her cloak, all but shoving her into the freezing air.
"Duty does not wait for one who whines," he snapped, his grip tightening around her arm.
Bitter winds lashed at her dress, whipping the fabric around her legs. Her cheeks and toes burned, and fog formed in front of her with every breath. Her skin tightened, prickles of heat dancing along the surface. Wrapping her arms around herself, she fought to ward off the chill even as she felt it sinking deeper into her skin.
"My lord, I would hurry, but this wind…it is so cold, I fear I'll freeze."
"Nonsense.Amuliana would not send you forth to freeze. You have served her well."
Una stumbled, her hand catching at Anagor. Pain ripped through her, shredding her heart as she wavered, yet it wasn't her pain. Rather, it was his. His pale eyes stared at her, hate stirring in them, along with something else. Something terrifying.
Backing away from him, Una trembled. Her fingers clutched at her clothes, wrapping them tighter around her. Each step back she took, he advanced two, his eyes fastened on her throat. He grinned, a merciless expression which revealed blackened nubs for teeth and puss filled gums.
"What is this?" Una swallowed, the rising fear pushing any thought but escape from her mind.
"My penance has waited too long, Una. I will have what I seek this night." Anagor licked his lips, his eyes darkening with hunger.


About the Author:


Born in Northern British Columbia, Elise is a small-town girl. She writes in a variety of genres including paranormal, contemporary suspense, m/m in various lengths. Currently, she lives in British Columbia with her husband and son, one dog, one cat, and a gecko. Elise enjoys reading as much as she does writing, with some of her favorite books being read until they fall apart. 
She is currently working on the next book in the Forsaken Series, Burning Rain. As well she has a new contemporary she’s working on. For more information on Elise, or to check out her books you can find her on Facebook, twitter, and her website.


Contact the Author:


Monday, May 7, 2018

Book Blitz: A Time To Burnish by Radhika Nathan

~ Book Blitz ~
A Time to Burnish by Radhika Nathan

About the Book:


"Not too long before we can get as many of them 3-D printed."

That pretty much sums up Josh Winslow's feelings about classic artifacts. As a man of science and technology, he couldn't care less about old bronze idols. Unfortunately, his brother Tom has just made one such idol his problem.

Vidya Thyagarajan, a young banker from Chennai, didn't expect to chase the origins of old idols either. But her friend Tom has just entangled her in one such chase.

Along with Vidya, Josh reluctantly embarks on a journey to India to track the origins of a Chola bronze idol. Through the urban maze of Chennai, dusty roads of small towns in deep Chola territory, they discover clues that confounds them every step of the way.

During a short span of a week, the quest quickly becomes personal as the shadow of the past challenges their outlook toward life and love.

Book Links:

Read an Excerpt:

“What is my area of expertise, Josh?”
Recognizing the question for what it was—an opener—Josh bit back a groan. Tom reminded him of an old modem in a slow network; the connection light had to get steady before the data light started blinking in a measured pace.
He replied, “You know I can answer that question in my sleep! Growing up, it was all that residue hippie stuff, all that ghastly sitar music, thanks to Mom and Dad. Then you had to go pick India as your area of interest.”
There was no answering smile on Tom’s face, just an abrupt headshake of a refusal to rise to the bait.
“What specifically in India?”
“South India.”
“Your brilliant grasp of the specifics never ceases to amaze me,” Tom said with the same maddened note that crept into his voice when dealing with Josh’s indifference toward his profession.
He poured out the warm saké from the flask and took a delicate sip from the cup.
“For the zillionth time, my area of specialization is the Chola Empire, covering roughly the ninth to the thirteenth century.”
“I know,” acknowledged Josh, sensing this was not the time to say “whatever.” He made an effort instead. “The rise and fall of the Cholas, with special focus on that dude who was a great warrior and visionary—Maharajah Chola.”
“You mean Rajaraja Chola.”
“Yes, of course, what was that paper you wrote? ‘The social order under Rajaraja and the later Cholas’,” Josh said with pretentious nonchalance. Tom produced many such papers and was either a member or a fellow or some such on various societies.
Tom laughed for the first time that evening. “There may be some hope for you after all.”
Josh grinned.
Tom rubbed his eyes slightly and then, leaning forward, started talking about the Cholas with the passion and intensity that usually marked him.
“At its peak, the Chola Empire covered the bulk of South India, parts of Sri Lanka, touched Maldives, and even Malacca. The medieval Chola kings were great patrons of art and literature, they made major strides in governance and foreign relations, and they were builders of magnificent architecture... Let’s just say, the height of the Chola Empire, especially the time of Rajaraja, can be thought of as a golden age. Think Italy during the Renaissance.”
“Must I?” Josh muttered, fidgeting a little. Tom ignored it.
“You know, as part of my job, I work on acquisitions of relics of rare value?”
Yes,” Josh nodded. What was it that Tom had acquired the previous summer? Wasn’t it a manuscript of some sort? He wished he could surreptitiously pull his iPad out and do a quick search on his email.
He needn’t have troubled himself. Tom continued, almost ignoring his answer, his brows furrowed.
“My limited budget hardly allows for anything major. A piece of an intricately carved wooden door, an old silk sari, a palm leaf book, those are the kind of things I usually go for. A Chola bronze icon is in a whole different league. You could even say it’s the top artifact of the period. These bronzes are typically delicate, sensual icons of the gods and the saints or occasionally royals. They still make bronze icons in south India, but the Chola bronzes are Yes,” Josh nodded. What was it that Tom had acquired the previous summer? Wasn’t it a manuscript of some sort? He wished he could surreptitiously pull his iPad out and do a quick search on his email.
He needn’t have troubled himself. Tom continued, almost ignoring his answer, his brows furrowed.
“My limited budget hardly allows for anything major. A piece of an intricately carved wooden door, an old silk sari, a palm leaf book, those are the kind of things I usually go for. A Chola bronze icon is in a whole different league. You could even say it’s the top artifact of the period. These bronzes are typically delicate, sensual icons of the gods and the saints or occasionally royals. They still make bronze icons in south India, but the Chola bronzes are antiques—they could be millions of dollars’ worth.” Tom paused for a moment, his face troubled, full of worry.
Josh raised his brows and whistled lightly. “Millions, huh?”
“Yes, millions. Josh, in my enthusiasm, I have made a grave mistake. You have got to help me. I have no one else to turn to.” Tom’s voice took on a strained, and nervous quality.
Josh raised a hand.
“Hang on! What are you talking about?”
Tom sat back, grimaced, and then enunciated slowly. “I need you to help me track a Chola bronze.”
“What do you mean track?”
“Find all the information there is about a particular Chola bronze. I believe I have in my possession an antique bronze that has come into the UK likely through illicit art trafficking. My gut says there has been a major art theft, and if I don’t act now, I am going to be an accessory.”

About the Author:


Radhika Nathan is a juggler, a meanderer and a rolling stone. She believes in the miracle of words and the rain. Her favourite pastimes include reading, listening to podcasts and gazing at monsoon clouds. Her taste in books is eclectic ranging from anthropology to old fashioned murder mysteries, and if pushed she would name Jane Austen as her favourite author for her believable, eternal characters. Travel is something she enjoys and has been to more than a dozen countries- for the love of meeting new people and discovering new cultures. 
Radhika writes for her fascination of human beings, intrigued by their archetypal & atypical behaviour and the differences & similarities in all of us. Writing is a means that forces her to think and re-examine a point of view or a preconceived notion. ‘I grow as a person as I write’, she says and quotes ‘A well written sentence [a rare occurrence] is like soul chocolate.’
Radhika, believes in a spiritual approach to life that welcomes science. She believes in liberty, equality, personal responsibility and fair play.

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