Spotlight: Miss Percy’s Pocket Guide to the Care and Feeding of British Dragons, by Quenby Olson

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Miss Percy's Pocket Guide

 

Miss Percy’s Pocket Guide to the Care and Feeding of British Dragons
by Quenby Olson
Series: A Miss Percy Guide (#1)
Published: October 26, 2021
Genre: Comedic, Fantasy of Manners
Pages: 347
CW: very mild profanity
POSSIBLE ULTIMATE TOUR EXPERIENCE TICKETS: An Unforgettable Sidekick, Represent, It’s All About The Journey, Love Actually, A Villain You Love To Hate, The Wings Of Change, Here Be Dragons, I’m Not Crying, You Are Crying

 

Miss Mildred Percy inherits a dragon.

Ah, but we’ve already got ahead of ourselves…

Miss Mildred Percy is a spinster. She does not dance, she has long stopped dreaming, and she certainly does not have adventures. That is, until her great uncle has the audacity to leave her an inheritance, one that includes a dragon’s egg.

The egg – as eggs are wont to do – decides to hatch, and Miss Mildred Percy is suddenly thrust out of the role of “spinster and general wallflower” and into the unprecedented position of “spinster and keeper of dragons.” But England has not seen a dragon since… well, ever. And now Mildred must contend with raising a dragon (that should not exist), kindling a romance (with a humble vicar), and embarking on an adventure she never thought could be hers for the taking.

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Author Info

Quenby Olson lives in Central Pennsylvania where she spends most of her time writing, glaring at baskets of unfolded laundry, and telling her kids to stop climbing things. She lives with her husband and five children, who do nothing to dampen her love of classical ballet, geeky crochet, and staying up late to watch old episodes of Doctor Who.

Quenby Olson

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Spotlight & Excerpt: Dead Man’s Hex + Giveaway

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This is my post during the blog tour for Dead Man’s Hex by Ani Gonzalez. In Dead Man’s Hex Paranormal investigator Claire Delacourt’s working vacation turns into a cruise ship to hell and it’s up to her and her trusty hellhound Chihuahua, Pookie, to save the ship…and the world.

This blog tour is organized by Lola’s Blog Tours and the tour runs from 25 till 31 October. You can see the tour schedule here.

Dead Man's Hex book cover

Dead Man’s Hex (Drop Dead Witchy #2)
By Ani Gonzalez
Genre: Humorous Urban Fantasy
Age category: Adult
Release Date: 27 October 2021

Blurb:
It’s a cruise ship to Hell. Literally.

Sun, sand, and ghosts. Sounds like the perfect working vacation, no? The supernatural cruise would be a chance to get a tan, enjoy a variety of cold drinks with colorful umbrellas, and make some money leading ghost tours along the Mid-Atlantic coast…or so I thought. I didn’t count on a seasick hellhound Chihuahua, a stowaway ghost, and a crazy cult cramping my style. Now I’m fighting Octonomicron acolytes, trying to keep myself in one piece, and save humanity at the same time. Oh, and that tan? So not happening.

Links:
Goodreads
Amazon


Excerpt:

“NO,” POOKIE said. “Hellhounds and water don’t mix.”
“Hey, it pays the bills,” I replied, peering at my laptop screen.
We were in the Delacourt Manor dining room, a relatively peaceful space with an octagonal table, carved wooden chairs, and a brand new and rather expensive brass chandelier. The morning sun streamed through the windows, enveloping us in a comforting, summery warmth. I sat at the head of the gnome-carved table, checking my calendar as my hellhound Chihuahua lay on his pillow, soaking up the rays.
It would have been an idyllic scene, if it weren’t for the claw marks on the dining room door and the deep gashes on the floor. My newly acquired home—my family’s ancestral abode, no less—had a few Lovecraftian drawbacks.
Pookie’s obsidian eyes narrowed. “You’ve always been cheap, but you weren’t this concerned about money before. Did the television gig money run out?“
“Not yet, emphasis on yet, but I have a mortgage now.” I gestured toward a wall sadly in need of fresh wallpaper. “And a house that needs, er, maintenance.”
Pookie laughed. “Are you worried about feeding the tentacled beastie in the attic? Let me reassure you as to that. The sustenance it requires is not one you find at pet stores, and I’m not volunteering.”
Sadly, Pookie wasn’t exaggerating, for once. I’d gone as far as to let the government’s paranormal strike team, PRoVE, investigate the whole house with their computers, sensors, and magic users. Their best guess was that our unwanted housemate consumed only magical energy, preferably the kind found encased in a magical being.
A hellhound like Pookie would qualify as a full meal. As would I, given my necromancy. My ancestors, all witches, had also made the grade, as they were all killed by something very much like my supernatural cephalopod roommate.
Yes, it turned out my ancestral home was literally trying to eat me.
Oh, not right now. PRoVE had helped me install protections, so the creature was temporarily contained. As long as the house was standing, the transdimensional hexes implanted in it would be kept at bay, giving me enough time to figure who had put them there, and how I could take them out.
The house—an undeniably gorgeous Victorian that had so much gingerbread trim it could pass for a wedding cake—was extreme, even in this neighborhood. Yes, I lived in the famously haunted town of Banshee Creek. Yes, many people lived in haunted houses in this Northern Virginia village. However, I was the only who kept a magical katana—now resting against the table beside me—around for protection.
Which left me with an extremely difficult mission, and a big pile of home repair bills. I had a successful career as a paranormal investigator and—ugh, I guess I have to admit this—influencer. However, keeping the house and its newly installed protections in one piece wasn’t cheap, which was why instead of focusing on handing my supernatural squid housemate an eviction notice, my attention was on the big pile of house repair bills.
I already had a frighteningly large estimate from the electrician and a similar one from the plumber. The roof, I already knew, was in bad shape. Liam Hagen, Banshee Creek’s resident contractor, was now touring the house and likely daydreaming about the luxury pickup truck he’d buy with my checks.
I needed money fast, and Danny Demento’s Paranormal Summer Cruise paid extremely well.
“Uh-oh,” Pookie sighed. “I know that look. It’s a prelude to an episode of epic bad judgement.”
“Hey, you turned your back on the luxurious demonic lifestyle of Gehenna Heights,” I replied. “In this plane, my spoiled hellhound friend, money problems are not a state of mind. We need the cash. Look, it’s just three days. That leaves us plenty of time to hunt down the Octonomicron cultists. I promise I’ll let you bite some of them.”
“You don’t think Captain Eileen was acting alone then?” Pookie asked. “I thought that was the official PRoVE theory. She’d been in the organization a long time, had become obsessed with this particular old cult, and decided to bring it back all by her lonesome by triggering their old traps and the supernatural critters contained within.”
“No, I don’t,” I replied. “And neither does Caine. He’s just using that for his reports. He hates admitting that he doesn’t know.”
Caine Magnusson was the leader of PRoVE. You may have seen the group’s all-seeing eye logo, watched its YouTube channel, or heard about its goofy antics as harmless paranormal investigators, and thus you may have surmised they were just a bunch of adventure-seeking bikers and eccentric academics. But, believe me, that’s just a cover. PRoVe was a government organization tasked with investigating supernatural occurrences. The organization was old—created by President Andrew Johnson by an executive order dating back to the 1800’s—and Captain Eileen Childs was by no means their first renegade. She was, however, Caine’s first brush with betrayal, and he had not taken it well.
Eileen, burning with the hatred of the supernatural that had caused her to study magic and join PRoVE, had read the Octonomicron books and fused them to try to kill me, Cole Hunt, the town’s guardian ghost, and Sara Parker, the vampire who managed the pizzeria. Caine felt the betrayal deeply and was determined to find the cause of it. However, we had found no leads regarding the Octonomicron books, so PRoVE’s official story was that Eileen had acted alone.
None of us believed it, though. Whoever the Octonomicron people were, it was clear they were many. They had a printing press, they had blogs, they were distributing materials. Oh, maybe some of their victims, like Eileen, acted independently, but there was a group behind it. One that had likely been around for centuries. One that had killed my family.
And I had to find out who they were.
That is, right after I got my roof repair estimate. Liam’s footsteps echoed through the house, the spring in his step sounding ominous. Anything that made my contractor happy would be bad news for my bank account.
I drew in a deep breath. “I’ll take the cruise job, put down the repair deposits, and leave Liam to fix the house. Then, I promise, we’ll go on a long, productive road trip and get to the bottom of this.”
I pulled up Danny Demento’s e-mail. All I had to do to secure a last-minute berth was reply and show up. The VIP treatment was nice, and it explained how Danny had been able to assemble such an impressive lineup of presenters, entertainers, and hosts for his trip. Nearly every high-profile paranormal investigator, medium, and parapsychologist I knew was attending.
“The job,” Pookie drawled, “is a weekend cruise down the Mid-Atlantic coast with a bunch of weirdos doing silly magic tricks. Trust me—there isn’t enough money in the world.”
“Danny Demento is not a weirdo,” I replied, typing in my registration information. “He is a marketing genius. He started with a national chain of seasonal Halloween costume stores, expanded into a line of haunted house attractions, and is now doing haunted cruises. He’s brilliant.”
And he was pulling out all the stops for this tour. The materials promised arcane rituals, esoteric knowledge, and the fulfillment of one’s secret dreams and desires. The itinerary itself was a series of run-of-the-mill coastal paranormal investigations—spooky lighthouses, haunted hotels, and ghost ships—but Danny made it sound epic. He even promised world domination. Typical Demento over-sell.
“He’s had more bankruptcies than I’ve had reincarnations,” Pookie replied. “The haunted house gig went kaput, and he had to sell the stores at a loss.”
He had me there. Danny’s finances went up and down like a roller coaster. When he was up, he was minting money, but when he was down, he went totally broke. This cruise seemed to be one of his upswings.
“You need to stop watching financial news,” I mused, reviewing Danny’s email. “It’s not good for you.”
Three days of sand and surf, surrounded by some of the most influential people in the paranormal industry. That didn’t sound too bad. I’d be able to gather information and check out if anyone had noticed the Octonomicron materials and their distinctive eight-armed symbol around. My colleagues were huge gossips, so that wouldn’t be hard. By the time the job was over, I’d have some idea of what my next step should be. Right now, all I had was a pile of Octonomicron books, Eileen Childs’s tapes, Sara’s haphazard memories, and a long list of questions.
Pookie yawned. “I’m a demon. I can’t resist a train wreck. I just don’t want to be a part of it.”
“But disaster hasn’t hit yet,” I continued. “He has money now, and he’s willing to pay a handsome fee. That’s the bottom line. You can stay if you want to, but I’m going.”
Pookie snorted. “As if you could get by without me.”
“Try me,” I said, hinting the send button.
Pookie’s eyes went wide. “Well, aren’t you the independent—wait, a minute. Are you taking the ghost guy? Am I being replaced by Mr. Tall, Dark, and Only Corporeal to You?”
My head snapped up. “The ghost—you mean Cole? No, he’s not coming. Of course not.”
Cole Hunt wasn’t just the town’s resident guardian spirit. He was also my old high school crush. He’d helped us defeat Captain Eileen, and he also wanted to solve the mystery of the Octonomicron. He thought there was an older and more dangerous force at work, and he would be a useful ally—
“Oooooh,” Pookie sighed. “Cole and Claire, sitting in a ship, K-I-S-S-I—”
“Oh, stop,” I said, scowling at him. “That doesn’t even rhyme.”
“‘Nipping’ would rhyme,” he replied. “But then he’d have to be a werewolf, not a specter.” He frowned. “Can a ghost even board a boat? Isn’t he stuck here?”
“He’s not going,” I said through gritted teeth.
Even if I wanted to have Cole around, which I wasn’t willing to admit, it wasn’t worth enduring Pookie’s teasing. And the hellhound was probably right. Ghosts tended to stay put. Cole was likely bound to Banshee Creek, the haunted town he was devoted to.
So, no beach trip with Cole Hunt. I wasn’t disappointed about that, not at all.
“Turn that frown upside down, witch girl,” Pookie drawled. “It’s not too late to back out from this sand flea-infested three-day cruise to beach hell.”
“Actually,” I said. “The confirmation e-mail just hit my inbox, so it is too late. We leave for Norfolk tomorrow.”
“Oh, wonderful,” Pookie said with profound insincerity. “I’ve longed to see Norfolk again. We had so much fun there the last time.”
And by ‘fun,’ he meant the exact opposite. The Norfolk supernatural community could be strange, not that I was judging or anything. We were all a few nachos short of a combination plate in this business, but Norfolk was missing an entire enchilada.
“I’m glad you’re so excited,” I replied, ignoring his sarcasm. “We leave in the morning, which doesn’t give us much time to pack.”
“Luckily, I travel light,” Pookie said.
“But I don’t,” I said, as I pulled up my work packing list.
Monster hunting didn’t require a large wardrobe, but my day job was a different story. I’d become a paranormal celebrity thanks to my stint as the host of the Celebrity Medium television show. I liked to think that my popularity was due to my scintillating personality and my deep knowledge of paranormal history, but looks were a big part of it. My lavender hair and stylish clothes were part of the draw, and that, unfortunately, required a lot of effort and a ton of luggage.
I got up from the table. “I better go hurry Liam up. If I don’t start packing soon—”
I jumped as a shrill scream rang out. The sound echoed through the room, making the thin glass of the old windows vibrate. Pookie yawned and glanced up at the ceiling.
“Did you warn Liam about the attic?” he asked.
“No,” I replied, leaping out of my seat, my heartbeat quickening. “I forgot.”
Luckily, I remembered to grab my sword before heading for the stairs.


First book in the series:
Hex Marks The Spot book cover
Hex Marks the Spot (Drop Dead Witchy #1)
By Ani Gonzalez

“Going to Hell is easy. Going back home is a different story.”

Links:
Goodreads
Bookbub
Amazon (Free Oct 29)


Ani Gonzalez author picture

About the Author:
I’m a USA Today bestselling author of paranormal romantic comedy and cozy mystery (whew, that’s a mouthful!) set in Banshee Creek, Virginia, The Most Haunted Town in the USA. My books feature feisty, irrepressible heroines dealing with a host of paranormal critters (ghosts, cryptids, pagan gods…the sky’s the limit) and mysteries. They find love and laughter (and sometimes corpses) along the way, and readers get to follow them every step of the way.

I love quirky towns with spooky stories, and, thanks to my books, I get to “live” in one year-around. In real life I live in a Virginia suburb (which is sadly lacking in ghosts) with my husband, three children, two cats, and one adorable dog.

Author links:
Website
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Goodreads
Bookbub
Amazon


Giveaway
There is a tour wide giveaway for the blog tour of Dead Man’s Hex. These are the prizes you can win:
– a $25 Amazon gift card
– a $15 Amazon gift card
– a $10 Amazon gift card

For a chance to win, enter the rafflecopter below:
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Spotlight & Excerpt: Don’t Start Now + Giveaway

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On Tour with Prism Book Tours

Don’t Start Now
By Tara September
Contemporary Romantic Comedy
Paperback, Audiobook & ebook, 182 Pages
March 1, 2021

 

“If you don’t wanna see me dancing with somebody, don’t show up … don’t start caring about me now.”

What can go wrong being stuck on a cruise ship with your ex and entering into a fake relationship with a sexy coworker? It might not be the Titanic, thank goodness, but Eve Richard’s heart is sinking by the minute and love is definitely going down.

Pulitzer-prize-winning war journalist turned small-town newspaperman, Adam Seager, has given up a lot for his work, country, and family, but not this time. He knows what he wants, and it’s his coworker, Eve. Her smile is the brightest part of his day and a daily reminder that more adventures are yet to come. When they are both assigned a travel feature on board a new cruise ship, it’s the perfect opportunity to let his feelings set sail.

Eve will never date another coworker or writer again. Been there, done that. Time to pursue her own writing dreams, even if it means bunking with the infuriating and complicated Adam Seager. So what if the butterflies he sets off in her belly can rival the waves outside their cabin. She intends to keep things strictly professional … that is, as much as they can be while also pretending to be a couple. Their relationship might be fake, but the pull to get to know more of him is real. Her reporter’s gut says there is more to uncover than meets the eye. But what will happen when they are back on dry land?

 

(Affiliate links included.)

Excerpt:

Zip-lining with the salt of the ocean in the air and fragrant flowers filling his senses was much different than the time Adam had careened off a rooftop in Afghanistan with a makeshift rope and a questionable carabiner he prayed wouldn’t spring open. This time, without his ears ringing from a nearby blast and the fear of death minimal, soaring fifty feet off the ground was exhilarating. He could see why tourists enjoyed the adventure.

Adam’s excursion wasn’t over yet, though. Their tour package included a hike to see the famous cliff divers fly into the waters below.

The mile-long climb was easy. Not staring at Eve in her yoga pants as she trekked ahead of him, however, wasn’t. The path was single file, and being the gentleman that he was, he of course told Eve to go first while blocking Hugh from going next in line. The putz grumbled behind him the whole way.

Adam smacked another mosquito that landed on his forearm, wishing he wasn’t in swim trunks and a thick, cotton T-shirt, but rather something more protective and airier. But when the brush cleared, so did Adam’s thoughts as the vast ocean view appeared before them. He stood still at first, transfixed. Feeling a pull, he stepped closer to the steep edge than was probably safe. A pebble plummeted into the aqua-blue water below, which slapped at the jagged edges of the rocky cliff. The color of the ocean matched Eve’s captivating eyes.

“Close your eyes,” Eve said in a whisper beside him.

He wanted to turn to look at her, but he did as he was told.

“Take a deep breath.”

Again, he did as she instructed, his bare forearm brushing against hers as he dragged in a deep gulp of air. The mere touch sent goose bumps down his arm.

“Keep your eyes closed,” she warned.

“Are you going to push me off the cliff?”

Her sweet laughter at his question drowned out the waves and the sounds of other journalists nearby. It felt like it was just the two of them in that moment with the sun beating down, their scents mixing. “Because if you’d truly rather write alone, there are better ways to go about it.”

“Shh. Take another breath in. What do you smell?”

“Cherry bark and almond,” he answered immediately.

“Hmm … that’s interesting. I’ve never heard the scent of the tropics or ocean described that way before.”

“I wasn’t describing either of those. That scent is you, and it’s invading my senses right now.” He cleared his throat.

“Oh, sorry, it must be the sunblock.”

It’s your shampoo, he almost corrected. He could smell it whenever she was near, and it drove him crazy. Like an addict, he inhaled again.

“Good,” she said, praising the deep breath he took. “Now tell me, what do you feel?”

You. Her nearness surrounded him. I want to ride that gorgeous body of yours until you can’t sit anymore. Aloud, he replied lamely, “I don’t know.”

“Is your heart pounding? Can you feel the rush from being this close? You have goose bumps.”

“Yes, all those things,” he acknowledged.

“Then you’ll need to recall these feelings when you go to write about your visit.”

Considering that’s how he often felt when near Eve, that wouldn’t be a problem.


Bookstagram Tour


Check out the Bookstagram Tour here, which has its own giveaway!

About the Author

Tara September is a multi-award-winning contemporary romance author living in Southwest Florida. Tara holds a master’s degree in journalism from New York University. Previously, she was the Communications Manager at WWE and a PR Manager for The Walt Disney Company.

Fueled by an IV of green tea and Prosecco, Tara is finally writing the happily ever after tales she’s been dreaming about. Proud mom to twins and four cats, she also blogs over at When Tara Met Blog @tarametblog, a lifestyle and parenting blog of 16 years.

Grab a free short story at –> https://bit.ly/taraseptemberfreebie

 


Tour Schedule


Tour Giveaway

One winner will receive an audiobook of Jesse’s Girl
One winner will receive an audiobook of It Might Be You
One winner will receive an audiobook of Mine to Five

Open to US and UK residents only
Ends September 1, 2021


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