Book Blitz & Excerpt: Sun, Sea and Small-Town Secrets + Giveaway

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Sun, Sea and Small-Town Secrets, by S.J. Coles

Word Count: 48,634
Book Length: SHORT NOVEL
Pages: 193

Genres:

ACTION AND ADVENTURE
CRIME
CRIME AND MYSTERY
EROTIC ROMANCE
FAKE RELATIONSHIPS
GAY
GLBTQI
MEN IN UNIFORM

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Book Description

Small towns are full of secrets, some harder to keep than most.

Sebastian Conway is a professional psychologist and accomplished criminal profiler, but when one of his patients is sentenced to life in prison for a crime she didn’t commit, he simply cannot let it go. His borderline obsessive behaviour has embarrassed his boss and lover, Gerrard Wilson, and the relationship has come to a bitter end.

Seb has now grudgingly taken Gerrard’s advice and come to the small coastal town of Ruéier in the South of France to get some distance and clear his head—but he cannot sit by and do nothing.

He has started writing a book he believes will address the failings in the case, but when he gets swept up in a local investigation into suspected drug trafficking, which is led by the enigmatic and strangely enticing Antoine Damboise, the book—and Seb’s intentions to avoid active criminal cases—take a back seat.

He knows it’s a bad idea to get involved, but he can’t seem to help himself. And when it seems Damboise is tempted to make their relationship more than professional, Seb finds it easier than ever to ignore his better judgment. But when a local drug dealer is murdered and Seb is implicated, everything gets a whole lot more complicated.

Can the two men set aside their personal feelings long enough to figure out what’s really going on before Seb ends up in prison? Or worse…

Reader advisory: This book contains scenes of murder and drug use.

Excerpt

I turned over with a sigh. I’d thought that second bottle of red would help me sleep this time, but all I’d achieved was insomnia with a headache.

The moonlight creeping in round the edge of the blind illuminated the bold, minimalist prints on the walls and the simple, spartan furniture that was so at odds with the balmy, luscious countryside outside.

Gerrard had always liked his surroundings…controlled. Even the washing powder was the same brand he’d used in the flat at home, so the sheets smelled like him.

I pushed them back with a frustrated grumble then wandered into the living area. I stared at the open laptop on the desk, the piles of journals and drifts of paper surrounding it. I shook my head, returned to the bedroom, dressed then left the villa.

The cool night air felt good against my flushed skin. I strode along the seafront boulevard where the cafe and boulangerie shopfronts were bleached shades of grey in the moonlight. I took deep breaths, inhaling the smells of salt and dried seaweed.

I checked my phone. It was getting on for two-thirty. I rubbed my face, admitting I wasn’t feeling much better than when I’d left the villa—no better than when I’d stepped off the plane a week before, either. I sat on a bench and gazed out over the deserted beach. During the day, the sand was so light and the sea so blue that it was almost tropical. Even at night it was beautiful, all shifting shadows and pale sand under a sky so vast and crowded with stars that it was like it belonged to another world.

I’d never visited France before. Hell, I’d never ventured outside the UK, apart from that one—and best forgotten—trip to Majorca with Gerrard for our anniversary. But I had to admit that Ruéier was picture-postcard perfect—small, unspoiled, off the beaten track, so not overrun by tourists and the inevitable high-street chains that followed them. It was everything Gerrard had said it was—the perfect place to get some distance and write my book.

So why can’t I sleep?

I stood, thinking to walk the long way home and avoid analysing the question too deeply but stopped when the sound of voices rippled the easy quiet of the night. Stepping out from the shadow of a tree, I saw one of the boats in the harbour had its cabin light on. It illuminated the wide deck and a tall wheelhouse. Several figures were aboard and another on the pier, loading large bags into the hold.

I wasn’t sure what made me look closer. There had to be plenty of reasons for loading a boat at night. But something about the way they moved and the low urgency of their muttered French raised the hairs on the back of my arms.

When the figure on the pier handed over the last heavy-looking holdall, his jacket lifted and I glimpsed a gun tucked in his waistband.

I stepped back into the shadows just as the hooded face turned my way. I held my breath. The voices went quiet but then the roar of the boat’s engine tore through the silence.

I swore silently to myself. I’d come to Ruéier to get away from suspicious figures with guns. I held my breath for several more heartbeats before daring another look. The boat was heading for the harbour mouth and the figure from the pier was coming up the stairs less than five meters away. I ducked behind the tree and held still. I could hear his footsteps now, coming right for me.

He walked right past, heading south, down the boulevard toward the ferry port. His shoulders were hunched, his hands in his pockets and his head moved left to right as he scanned the shadows on either side.

I didn’t breathe again until he’d turned a corner and disappeared.

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About the Author

S. J. Coles

S. J. Coles is a Romance writer originally from Shropshire, UK. She has been writing stories for as long as she has been able to read them. Her biggest passion is exploring narratives through character relationships.

She finds writing LGBT/paranormal romance provides many unique and fulfilling opportunities to explore many (often neglected or under-represented) aspects of human experience, expectation, emotion and sexuality.

Among her biggest influences are LGBT Romance authors K J Charles and Josh Lanyon and Vampire Chronicles author Anne Rice.

Find S. J. Coles at her website and follow her on Instagram.

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Cover Reveal: Truth and Other Lies, by Lyra Wolf

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Truth and Other Lies Ebook

Truth and Other Lies
by Lyra Wolf
Series: The Nine Worlds Rising (#1)
Published: October 9, 2020 by Ravenwell Press
Genre: High Fantasy, Mythic Fantasy, Action and Adventure
Pages: 320
Cover by: Dominic Forbes

Goodreads / Amazon

NOTHING IS TRICKIER THAN THE TRUTH.

All Loki the trickster god of Asgard wants is a quiet, peaceful life where he’s free to needle Balder, occasionally stir up the inter-realm porridge pot, and get Thor to dress in women’s garments (for all the best reasons).

Getting beset by sudden, painful, and terribly inconvenient visions of blood, ash, and death are definitely not on his to-do list. But, because of some small, ridiculous remnant of caring that refuses to be extinguished, Loki feels he must save Asgard…and that means warning Odin, his least favorite god (next to Thor).

But getting the gods to believe the boy who cried Fenrir is harder than it looks, and time is running out, not just for Asgard, but also for a mortal woman named Sigyn who may just hold the key to Loki’s future.

Loki is about to find out the hard way that the only thing crueler than truth are the lies behind it all.

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Author Information

Lyra Wolf is a Swiss-American author of fantasy and mythic fiction.
Raised in Indiana, home to a billion corn mazes, she now lives in Central Florida, home to a billion mosquitoes. She enjoys drinking espresso, wandering through old city streets, and being tragically drawn to 18th century rogues.
When Lyra isn’t fulfilling the wishes of her overly demanding Chihuahua, you can find her writing about other worlds and the complicated people who live there.

Lyra has earned a B.A. in History and M.A. in English.

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Book Blitz & Excerpt: Revealed + Giveaway

revealed zoe allison

Revealed, by Zoe Allison

Word Count: 84,315
Book Length: SUPER NOVEL
Pages: 324

Genres:

ACTION AND ADVENTURE
CONTEMPORARY
EROTIC ROMANCE
MYSTERY
PARANORMAL
VAMPIRES

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Book Description

Valentino has a secret—but he’s not the only one.

Valentino Bianco is the leader of a covert league named The Organization. Made up of benevolent vampires, its objective is to thwart and destroy the malevolent of their kind and protect humanity. Operating under the anonymous guise of Mr. X, Valentino’s identity as leader is shrouded in secrecy, as is the very existence of vampires.

Victoria Black has her own secrets, one of which is that she’s in love with Valentino. However, that isn’t the only matter she must keep from him at all costs.

Valentino and Victoria, along with their allies, must investigate a devastating malevolent campaign that is destroying humankind on a massive scale. But can they unravel the mystery of who is behind it in time to prevent the fall of both humanity and The Organization? And in the end, will all the secrets be revealed?

Reader advisory: This book contains scenes of murder and bloodletting, acts of terrorism, coercive control and emotional abuse.

Publisher’s note: This book is a sequel to Impervious and is best read in order.

Excerpt

Valentino studied the data that Priyanka was displaying on the virtual screen.

“We now have the last of Glassmarsh’s allies in custody,” she said, as a list of names

accompanied by pictures flashed up. “But none of them has yielded any information regarding the background of his sibling.”

“Therefore,” Vale said, “we are no further forward than when we captured him over ten years ago. The only advance is that we now know he is Glassmarsh’s brother.”

“Correct,” Priyanka said.

Victoria examined the details. “We don’t know where they came from?”

“No,” Priyanka confirmed.

“How can we find out,” Victoria asked, “if none of these guys knew anything?”

The three sat in silence for a moment. Vale stole a glance at Vic as she frowned and bit her lower lip. Her blue-green gaze seemed troubled. Priyanka tapped the keyboard and the screen changed to display intelligence from other agencies around the world. “We need to cast the net back out again,” she said.

The door opened and Lorenzo entered, followed by Gareth.

Lorenzo took his place next to Priyanka, leaning across the table to shake Vic’s hand. “Hi, we’ve not met in person yet. I’m Lorenzo, Priyanka’s deputy.”

Vic smiled. “Great to meet you. Victoria Black.”

Lorenzo smiled back. “I know. We’ve been very impressed with your work on this case so far.”

Vic flushed. Gareth approached her from the other side and kissed her cheek as he sat next to her. Vale blinked and looked away.

Priyanka frowned, glancing at Gareth and Vic as she moved some images around on the screen. “We’re checking to see if there’s anything here that could help us.”

Vale scanned the information, but it all pertained to human issues…mainly the latest spate of terrorist attacks that were sweeping Europe. He read through the details of the most recent bombing, in Berlin. Why do humans do it to each other? Their life spans were short enough without these atrocities.

There were no particulars that might aid them in their own cause, however.

“What’s that?” Vic asked.

“What’s what?” Vale said. “I cannot see anything here that would help us.”

“No,” she said. “It’s not something I see. It’s something I hear…outside.”

Vale tuned into his sensitive vampire hearing, detecting a subtle noise. He pressed a button on the desk and the tint of the glass wall morphed from opaque to transparent. He moved over to the window. The noise was a low-pitched rumbling, too low for the human ear to pick up. It was coming from the tallest building in London.

“What’s happening at The Shard?” Lorenzo said. He typed a few things into the keyboard but nothing of value appeared on the screen.

Vale peered more closely, trying to zoom in on any slight giveaway as to the source of the noise.

Just then, a boom emitted from The Shard, loud enough this time for the human ear to detect. Shattering glass sprayed out from the top floors. Everyone froze for a split second. Vale looked at Vic and the two of them broke into a sprint toward the stairs, Priyanka, Lorenzo and Gareth hot on their heels. Within seconds, they’d made it to the lobby of HQ.

“Get to the main entrance of The Shard,” Vale told them. “We can sneak in while everyone is running scared, then divide up to search for survivors and pull them out.”

They ran onto the sidewalk and toward the damaged building. The panic on the street was palpable as people ran past them in the opposite direction. No wonder they call it terrorism.

It didn’t take long to get there. They couldn’t go flat out and alert the public to their superhuman speed, but they could go faster than usual because the petrified humans were too focused on escaping danger to realize the velocity of their group.

They entered the building. Something didn’t sit right with Vale. “Why is no one exiting?” he asked the others. “This lobby is deserted and there was no one coming out of the main doors.”

“There were a lot of people on the street running away,” Vic said. “Maybe whoever could get away is out already?”

He shook his head. “They didn’t look as if they had come out of the building—more like passers-by on the street who were fleeing.”

“Let’s stick with Vale’s plan,” Lorenzo said, determination in his dark eyes. “Divide and conquer.”

The others made noises of agreement.

Vale adjusted his earpiece. They all carried them to stay in contact during such situations. “Take a section each and start searching.”

Priyanka gestured to the rear of the lobby. “Use the stairs, because the elevators will be out of commission.”

Gareth smiled. “We’re faster than the elevators anyway.”

Priyanka glanced at him and he gave her a wink.

“Fall out,” Vale said. “I will take the top.”

They entered the stairs and Vale streaked ahead, arriving on the highest habitable floor within seconds. A smoky atmosphere greeted him, but it impaired neither his enhanced vision nor his breathing. He listened for the sound of injured humans but could only hear silence, and it increased his unease.

He walked into one of the bars and scanned the room. Bodies were apparent, lying on the floor and the chairs, yet none of them made a sound or any movements. The blast cannot have immediately killed everybody in here. Someone must still be alive.

Vale checked the lifeless form of the nearest person. Nothing…and not the next. He rubbed his forehead as he scanned the area and something occurred to him. None of these people had a mark on them. For all intents and purposes, they appeared to be sleeping. A gut feeling told him to check their necks. As he moved the nearest person’s head to the side, two small puncture wounds on the neckline became apparent—very neat, with no laceration of the flesh.

His insides turned to ice. “Guys,” he said, speaking to the others via their earpieces.

“I know,” came Vic’s reply. “I see it too.”

“So do I,” Priyanka said. “This is the work of the malevolent.”

“Everyone,” Lorenzo said. “They’re all drained. But how?”

Vale exited the bar. “So what was the meaning of the explosion?”

“A cover-up,” Gareth said.

“But it isn’t covered up,” Priyanka replied. “The authorities will find these bodies once the search and rescue get here, which could be any minute.”

The true meaning behind it hit Vale, just as another rumbling started deep below them. “Get out!” he said. “The building is coming down!”

He dashed to the stairs and joined the group zipping down and out onto the street, where they accelerated into a sprint. Another huge explosion ripped through the building as they traveled flat-out along the road, a huge cloud of dust and debris overtaking them.

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First For Romance

About the Author

Zoe Allison

Growing up, Zoe Allison loved stories about falling in love. But rather than being rescued by a knight in shining armour, she imagined herself fighting dragons alongside him, battling supervillains as heroic allies, or teaming up to dive into perilous waters in order to save a loved one from drowning. Once Zoe did grow up, she became a doctor. But as time went on, she craved a creative outlet to counter the soul sapping burnout that her career inflicted upon her, and also to achieve those happy endings that were so often lacking in the real world. She wanted heroes who truly love and value women, who find their true love inspiring, are fascinated by her, want to connect with her as a soulmate and fully open themselves to her on an emotional level. And so, Zoe began to write her romances.

A Zoe Allison novel promises a heroine who is not only her hero’s equal in ability and intellect, but whose hero equals her in emotional intelligence. Her characters overcome conflict infused with spine tingling sexual tension to forge a deep connection as soul mates as well as lovers, and ultimately, they both rescue each other emotionally. Even if they might begin their journey as enemies…

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ZOE ALLISON IS GIVING AWAY THIS FABULOUS PRIZE TO ONE LUCKY WINNER. ENTER HERE FOR YOUR CHANCE TO WIN A LOVELY GIFT PACKAGE AND GET YOUR FREE ZOE ALLISON ROMANCE BOOK! Notice: This competition ends on 6th July 2021 at 5pm GMT. Competition hosted by Totally Entwined Group.