Spotlight & Excerpt: The Strong Amongst Us + Giveaway

TourBanner_The Strong Amongst Us

The Strong Amongst Us

The Strong Amongst Us
by J.A. Boulet
Genre: Historical Romance

An epic 1875 immigration saga. A love story. An epidemic.
Would you survive?

On a fateful day in October 1875, Nathan Olason steps foot onto the soil of a new foreign country called Canada. With natural sand beaches and breathtaking sunsets, it has been nicknamed paradise. Except it proves to be anything but.

With storm surges, emerging governments, racism and dwindling food supplies, Nathan and his family struggle to stay alive in this foreign wilderness. With the help of a beautiful Cree woman named Anwa, they learn to fish and hunt, surviving against all the odds.

Then just when they think they have prevailed, tragedy strikes an ominous blow, a smallpox epidemic that decimates villages, quarantines the town of Gimli, but most of all threatens to claim what he holds dear the most.

Would you survive?
Be one of the last men standing. Follow Nath on a heroic journey of immigration, manhood, immense love, resilience and perseverance beyond anything we know.

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EXCERPT:

He stared at the beautiful sun, peering over the horizon of gentle waves. The coldness stung, but he embraced it. The lake was much calmer today. He loved it actually; luck was on his side. They would most likely be able to send the funds request of the remaining five-thousand-dollar loan to the Dominion today by boat.

A movement caught his eye. Someone was pulling in a larger boat. He stood and used his hand to shelter from the sun. He squinted into the bright rays. It was just one person, pulling in the boat. He strapped his boots on and scurried over to the dock.

“Hey, do you need a hand?” Nathanael shouted as he approached.

A woman’s voice lilted into the air, gentle but full of strength. “No, I am okay.”

“No, I must! Let me help you,” Nathan insisted.

She looked at him stubbornly, shook her head and relented. “If you must.”

Nath grabbed the rope and helped pull in the boat, anchoring it along the sand. “Is this the boat that will be taking the letter to the Dominion for us today?”

“It is, yes,” she replied. “Sorry for my English. I am still learning.”

“You are native to this land?” Nath asked. “How long have you lived here?”

“Forever,” she laughed. “Ma and Pa were born here, so was I.”

“Interesting,” Nath said. “It is a beautiful land. And a beautiful lake.”

“Yes, Nath, it is,” she replied.

“You remembered my name?”


AUTHOR Bio and Links:

J. A. Boulet is the passionate author of The Olason Chronicles, a historical saga of immigration, love and perseverance. The Strong Amongst Us Book 1 was released on Amazon in April 2020. She was born and raised in Western Canada as a first generation Canadian from European descent. Her parents landed in St. John’s, NFLD as refugees in 1956, a direct result of the Hungarian Revolution. J. A. Boulet was born many years later, raised in a strong Hungarian culture and proudly calls Canada home to this day. She started writing poetry at the age of five and progressed to short stories and novels. She has a keen interest in history, healing, family bonds and embracing the unknown. J. A Boulet writes with a spine-tingling realism like none other, grabbing your emotions and refusing to let go. The Strong Within Us Book 2 is scheduled to be released on November 11, 2020.

She currently lives in Canada with her two teenaged sons and a crested gecko named Mossio. Follow her on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Reddit.

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GIVEAWAY

J.A. Boulet will be awarding a $15 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

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Author Spotlight: Chrystal Lee Stevens

chrystal lee stevens

the coming of jack walker 1

The Coming of Jack Walker
by Chrystal Lee Stevens
YA, Monster Fiction
224 pages

Jack Walker is a former bullied nerd whose life gets turned upside down when his girlfriend starts hanging out with the new mysterious guy who just moved into his hometown of Moorefield named Stefan. Then when Jack and his grandfather try to save Victoria from being kidnapped his grandfather gets injured and later dies. The last words his grandfather says to to him are, “If you ever want to see Victoria again you must get to Vladimir Island and find my old friend Cassandra.”

After his grandfather’s death Jack is left with his grandfather’s journal, old steamer trunk and lots of unanswered questions. Jack reads his grandfather’s journal full of yellowing brittle pages. He thinks that his grandfather’s words in the journal can’t possibly be true. But if not then how does he explain Victoria’s disappearance. So he decides in order to discover the truth he needs to get to Vladimir Island. So Jack gets accepted to the exclusive private school Van Pyre High that is located there. In between classes Jack searches for Cassandra.

Once Jack finds Cassandra, she tells him that in order to get Victoria back he has to step into his grandfather’s shoes and finish what he started with Stefan. Jack feels that he isn’t up to the task and feels powerless that the fate of the human world might one day rest in his hands. That day is now. The Administration for Monster Studies, a monster observing organization that his grandfather co-founded, informs him that Stefan and the Bloody Blade are coming for the Sun Amulet, a mythical object that makes the owner all powerful and immune to sunlight, that is hidden somewhere on the island.

The only problem: Jack has no idea how to be a vampire hunter let alone save the world. Luckily he has all of the monstrous inhabitants of Vladimir Island to help him complete the task.

Amazon / Goodreads

the black leather belt murders

The Black Leather Belt Murders
by Chrystal Lee Stevens
Police Procedural, Thriller
263 pages

Mandrake is lethal… Blondes are a poison, the belt is his cure.

FBI profiler Rick Sullivan finds himself on the trail of a serial killer known as Mandrake. Mandrake strangles blondes with a black leather belt that he leaves fastened around their necks. As the body count rises Mandrake evades Rick at every turn. He finally catches a break in the case when he travels to a small Virginia town and meets Destiny Malone.

Destiny came home a week before Christmas to find her roommate Sydney strangled in her bed. Destiny was planning to become a PI after college graduation but has now been thrown full force into her first case. She is determined to find out who extinguished the fiery redhead and not even sexy Rick Sullivan is going to get in her way.

Rick believes that Sydney was killed by a copycat. Especially when he discovers that her ex-boyfriend who has recently escaped from prison was the one responsible for his father’s murder. Rick believes that Destiny is now in danger too and will stop at nothing to protect her even if it means staring into the face of death.

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About the Author:

chrystal lee stevens

I’m an avid reader. I love movies, music, books, and film especially anything relating to the 1950s. I’m trained in Journalism and Law Enforcement. If I’m not reading or writing I’m usually spending time with my little red Pomeranian named William Wallace Braveheart aka Willie for short. A cutie I saved from a trip to the pound.

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Audio Spotlight: Blue Bloods Final Destiny + Narrator Interview

My Blood Runs Blue Banner

Title: Blue Bloods Final Destiny

Author: Stacy Eaton

Narrator: Alex Black

Length: 6 hours 2 minutes

Series: My Blood Runs Blue, Book 5

Released: Aug. 20, 2020

Publisher: Nitewolf Novels

Genre: Paranormal Romance

 

Julian Hutchinson walked away from it all: his job, his friends, and her. As Julian drives out west, he randomly stops at a roadside tavern and runs into some people from his past.

Lyssa Lakin helps her father around the tavern as she raises her 15-year-old daughter, Lorna. When Julian walks into the bar, Lyssa’s past crush on him hits full force, but even she can tell that he is far from ready to be involved with anyone.

As Julian and Lyssa grow their friendship, their past romance is rekindled. When Julian’s past comes back to haunt him and an old enemy shows up in town, Julian knows a showdown is imminent.

Will Julian be able to deal with his past and his enemy without destroying the new life he has created?

The gang is back for one final book where lines are drawn and quickly crossed, and Julian and Kristin will have to work together one last time to save people that they care about.

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Stacy Eaton is a USA Today Best Selling author and began her writing career in October of 2010. Stacy took an early retirement from law enforcement after over fifteen years of service in 2016, with her last three years in investigations and crime scene investigation to write full time.

Stacy resides in southeastern Pennsylvania with her husband, who works in law enforcement, and her teen daughter. She also has a son who is currently serving in the United States Navy, and two grandchildren.

Stacy is involved in Domestic Violence Awareness and served on the Board of Directors for her local Domestic Violence Center for three years.

Be sure to visit www.stacyeaton.com for updates and more information on her books.

Sign up for all the latest information on Stacy’s Newsletter!

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Narrator Bio

Alex Black is an articulate, engaging, and versatile narrator based in Cambridge, Vermont. He’s worked in theatre, film, audio production, and appeared on radio. As an accomplished audiobook producer with over 90 titles, he’s worked closely with independent authors and publishers.

He’s received more than 500 5 star reviews and specializes in Romance, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Apocalyptic, Mystery & Thriller, LGBTQ+, and Memoirs.

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Q&A with Narrator Alex Black
  • Are you an audiobook listener? What about the audiobook format appeals to you?
    • I am an audiobook listener. I’ve a huge To Be Read list going on right now. At the top is ‘The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo.”
      The audiobook format is quite appealing for several reasons. Meaning can be conveyed in different ways through the narrator(s). One of the best things about an audiobook is when characterization is enhanced. The format allows the listener to consume fantastic books in settings where reading would be difficult. For example, while driving, exercising, cooking, hiking, showering, working, etc.
      At the end of the day, whether you’re reading or listening, you can get together and discuss the same story.
  • What are your favorite and least favorite parts of narrating an audiobook?
    • My favorite part of narrating an audiobook is being put into the mind of the author. I learn valuable insight from that perspective. It makes me a better reader. Being a better reader prepares me to delve deeper into the next story, and become better at understanding storytelling.
      Ultimately, writing is one of the most intimate things someone can do. The writer is openly sharing the way that they think, the way that they tell a story, their thought process’. My favorite part is experiencing new ways to tell stories. Every author I’ve worked with has blown my mind.
  • What about this title compelled you to audition as narrator?
    • Vampires. First and foremost, vampires are awesome. Secondly, I really wanted to complete the books as a whole series and produce the box set. I find that box sets are amazing because they put an incredible amount of content at people’s fingertips.
  • How closely do you prefer to work with authors?
    • I tend to have close relationships with authors and publishers. I enjoy hearing what authors have to say, what they’re interested in, what’s coming up next, what their plans are. From whatever angle, working with authors is a relationship first. There are wonderful people out there with amazing stories to tell, and I’ve been fortunate to work with the most fantastic authors. Stacy is case in point. You can see a reflection of her life’s experiences in her work. How can you not want to work closely with someone like Stacy?
  • How did you decide how each character should sound in this title?
    • Ok. Here’s a few of my favorites.
      Officer Kristin Greene is a badass. She doesn’t take crap from anyone and she is deeply empathic. She’s community based. I wanted her voice to be strong. She is direct and stands her ground. But her voice always has a softer concern for her loved ones. Then ruthless towards her enemies.
      Julian is a romantic at heart. He’ll get things done. He’s got his opinions, and honestly, he’s trying to figure things out. He’s had to deal with a lot. On top of that, he’s confronted with the near ghost of his late beloved Calista. I thought his tone should be firm but with a hint of softness. That softness is born of love and romance.
      Alex is top dog. You listen to him. You don’t go against his orders. I wanted him to have a bit of presence in his voice. A bit of no nonsense.
      Trent is pure southern charm, and Olivia is fun and bubbly. Also restless, and excited about the changes in her life.
      Gabriel is another empathic character. He is a rock. I wanted his voice to be caring and focused, but undaunted and undeterred. A simple man, honestly.
  • Have there been any characters that you really connected with?
    • All of them. Every single one. I’m a highly sensitive man. It’s very easy for me to empathize with people in general.
      I understood Kristin to her core. Stacy and I had shared a laugh, discussing a scene with Kristin. I remember telling her that I literally rolled my eyes when the scene rolled along. But that was Kristin’s character you see. She had to be where she was because of her deep empathy. I’d say probably Kristin was the one I most connected with.
      Second would be Alex and Julian. I related to their perspective on many levels. Their grit, determination, and no-nonsense. I appreciate good strong men. Their tenacity. Their love for another MC.
  • Do you read reviews for your audiobooks? If so, which ones stand out to you most, positive or negative?
    • Yes. I read them all. Every single one. I’ve discovered a pattern to the reviews that stand out to me. I love the reviews where you can physically see someone smiling as they’re typing the review. Those are my favorite. Especially if they’ve spammed emojis.
      I’ve mentioned before that I’m a highly sensitive man. But I also have very thick skin. There’s a common saying in the narrator community that goes “Don’t read the reviews!” Maybe my brain is wired differently, perhaps it’s from my childhood, but I love reading both negative and positive reviews. There’s a little seed of truth in everything. I think some folks make the mistake of letting negative reviews govern them.
  • What type of the review comments do you find most constructive
    • The most constructive comments occur in repetition. You’ll often find both your strengths and weaknesses repetitively addressed in reviews. It’s the repetition that can tell you whether something is working or not. That repetition is what I find most constructive.
  • If you could narrate one book from your youth what would it be and why?
    • This is a tough one for me. I was maybe eight years old when I picked up R.A. Salvatore’s ‘The Demon Awakens’ from the Giant supermarket in Bowie, MD.
      “It’s a big book,” my father said.
      I can still hear his long heavy sigh that turned the necks of strangers in line at check out. It sure was a big book for an eight year old. Looking back, I don’t think he wanted to pass up investing in my desire to read. Either that or I was possessed by demons and kicked and screamed until I got the book. I say possessed because I was good kid. Right dad?
      I’v picked this one because it changed my life. This was a flashlight under the covers book.
      “I said go to bed!” mom would yell through the door.
      I don’t know how but she knew i was reading. As kid you’re trying to figure out how the beam of your flashlight could go through three layers of bedding, the door, down the hall, and wake up your mother.
      Anyway, I lived vicariously through my imagination as a kid. The world was so rough and unkind to me. This book was my best friend. Every turn of the page revived me. Rangers, goblins, giants, elves, magic, first kisses. Sigh.
  • What’s next for you?
    • I’ll be candid with what’s important to me. My first priority is being deserving of my amazing beautiful wife. That’s always next for me. Everyday.
      In the audiobook world, Stacy and I are working on preparing the ‘My Blood Runs Blue’ series box set. Then ‘The Blue Blood Returns’ series begin production in January!
      Aside for that, my lovely wife and I have been narrating duet and dual POV audiobooks this year. We’ve been kicking butt and taking names! You should hear her, she’s amazing. (I’m kissing my fingertips in French). She’s so versatile. I’m already learning so much from working alongside her. Truly an inspiration.
      It’s been a wild, exhausting 2020. Our goal is to fill our 2021 calendar with amazing authors and put out some amazing stories that must be told!

 

 

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