Interview with Barbara Pietron, author of Soulshifter

Welcome to Book Marketing Buzz.  Can we begin by having you tell us a little about your book?

Soulshifter is a YA urban fantasy about a sixteen-year-old boy, Jack, eager to secure a successful future. After one of his classmates disappears from a family camping trip, Jack overhears the missing girl’s best friend, Natalie, describe the creature that abducted her friend. Although others have written Natalie off as traumatized and delusional, Jack knows the human-stealing hell’s messengers are real. Brought up as part of a spiritual sect, Jack is a soulshifter who can travel between worlds and decides that by rescuing this girl from the underworld he can obtain a future otherwise out of his reach. Jack and Natalie work together on a plan to outwit the ruler of the underworld, but as he stands on the verge of seeing his dreams come true, Jack doubts his ultimate intentions. Yet he can’t back out with a girl’s soul at stake, even if success binds him to a future he no longer desires. So Jack travels to the underworld to face down the dark lord, determined to make good on his word and accept whatever fate has in store for him.

What is the first thing you did to promote your book once your publisher accepted your manuscript?

I decided to have a titling contest. The working title for the book was Escaping Fate which was appropriate for the storyline, but an online search revealed the title was overused. The goal of my website is to have others join in my writing adventures, so I thought why not have readers help me title the book? It was a lot of fun. I posted a story description on my website and collected suggestions. Then my publisher and I chose our six favorites and put them up for a vote. Soulshifter was the winner.

What did your publisher do to promote your book?

My publisher worked with me on the titling contest, promoting it on social media and posting an entry form on the Scribe Publishing website. We worked hard to increase my fan base, via blog tours, giveaways and social media. When Soulshifter’s cover art and layout were complete, my publisher sent out advance review copies and made an eBook version available for review as well. She also had a promotional postcard made which she sent to multiple booksellers introducing Soulshifter.

I understand using the social networks to promote your books is also an effective marketing tool.  What social networks do you use and do you find any of them effective?

I find social media very hit or miss. I have a Facebook author page which was fairly effective until their newsfeed change. I also have an Instagram account, just for fun, because people love visual messages.

Besides blogging and using the social networks to promote your books, what other ways are you promoting your book?

I have an email list which I find is a great tool for letting readers join my writing adventures. I share exclusive content like character interviews and short stories, review and recommend books I’ve read, let them know about news and events and update them on my current work in progress. I even share cool websites and resources I’ve found for writing because so many readers are writers too. I also make personal appearances whenever possible at festivals, book stores, libraries, etc…

If you had to pick just one book marketing tool that you’ve used to promote your book, which would you say has been the most effective?

To date, I’d have to say personal appearances have been the most effective marketing tool for me. But my email list is young and I have great expectations that it will prove to be the most effective tool in the long run.

About The Book

Title: Soulshifter
Author: Barbara Pietron
Publisher: Scribe Publishing Company
Publication Date: November 24, 2015
Format: Paperback – 290 pages / eBook  / PDF
ISBN: 978-0991602124
Genre: YA Urban Fantasy

Book Description:

Sixteen-year-old Jack Ironwood knew exactly what he wanted. Until he got it. Jack was content to stay unnoticed by pretty and popular track star, Natalie Segetich, until her best friend Emma disappears. Natalie swears something took Emma, and though most people write Natalie off as traumatized and confused, Jack is a soulshifter and he knows the human-stealing Enuuki—hell’s messengers—are real. As a soulshifter, Jack can cross into the underworld so he sees Emma’s rescue as an opportunity to prove himself a valuable member of his transcendental sect—and a way to secure a future otherwise out of his reach. Although he needs Natalie’s help to prepare for the mission, Jack intends to go to the underworld alone. But as a viable plan takes shape, it’s clear the best chance of success means Natalie must accompany him. On the eve of the quest, when Jack is promised the hand of a respected elder’s daughter—a dream come true—he realizes he’s no longer sure what he wants. But it’s too late to back out, not with the sect and Natalie counting on him. Pursued by the dark lord’s henchmen and ghastly mutant creatures, Jack and Natalie struggle to come out ahead in a battle and barter for souls. In the end, Jack will have to decide his own fate, because nothing short of a deal with the devil will get all three of them out of hell alive.
Book Excerpt:

Chapter 1
Revelations from the Dark Realm
Feedback shrieked from the electric
guitar amp, annihilating the harmonious blend of drums, bass guitar and
electric piano. Jack winced as he fumbled for the volume knob on his guitar,
pretending he didn’t see Tommy, the lead singer, shoot him a furious glare.
Head down, Jack concentrated on the next few chord progressions, until Tommy
launched into his signature vocal screaming. Then Jack stole a glance to his
left and caught the eye of his best friend, Wes, who skillfully delivered the
pulse of the track on his bass guitar. Wes lifted his eyebrows and Jack
answered with a slight shrug and an apologetic frown.
It was one thing if Jack screwed up
this opportunity for himself, but Wes had talked the band into giving Jack a
chance this summer when they’d lost their lead guitarist to college. Jack
didn’t want to embarrass Wes, or give Tommy a reason to give his friend a hard
time. The singer hadn’t wanted Wes in the band either, but when the other
members heard Wes play and realized he was a wizard on the bass guitar, Tommy
had been out-voted. It had taken two years for Wes to earn the lead singer’s
grudging respect and Jack hated to mess that up.
They finished the set and Jack
ducked out of his guitar strap, leaning the instrument against the cinderblock wall
of Fletch’s—the drummer’s—basement. He ran both hands through his thick curls,
for the first time thankful that his mom had insisted he get a haircut before
school started. Shoulder-length for most of the summer, his dark brown mane was
now tamed to a mass of loose curls that ended at the base of his jaw—not as
rock and roll, but certainly cooler.
He turned and nearly collided with
Tommy. “What’s up with the feedback, Ironwood? We’ve got a gig in two
“Sorry, man.” Jack shook
his head. He noticed John, the keyboardist, give him and Tommy a wide berth as
he beat a hasty retreat. “Just having an off day. I’m low on sleep.”
“Well you better get it
together by Monday. A lot of people come out to the park on Labor Day, and we
don’t need you making the rest of us look like amateurs.” He spun on his
heel and stomped up the steps before Jack could reply.
Fletch offered Jack a sports drink.
“You’ve been playing good all summer. Just don’t choke when you get on
stage.” He laughed, but his eyes were serious.
“Thanks.” Jack took the
plastic bottle and cracked the lid open. “I’ll be fine. I promise.”
He took a long drink, letting the slightly salty, citrusy liquid soothe his dry
tongue and throat before bending to put his guitar into its case.
An intermittent chink of metal on
metal sounded from the base of the stairwell. “Ready?”
Jack glanced up to see Wes tossing
a bundle of keys into the air and then catching them. “Yep.” He
noticed that Wes had decided to leave his guitar at Fletch’s. They were going
to rehearse again tomorrow, but Jack felt like he ought to go home and get in
some extra practice. He followed his friend out to the minivan, which smelled
like the burgers and fries they’d eaten on the way to rehearsal, and loaded his
gear into the back.
After Jack plopped into the
passenger seat and closed the door, Wes spoke up. “Dude.” He drew out
the solitary word and added a sigh, conveying both disappointment and sympathy.
“I know,” Jack said
quickly. “I’m not a hundred percent today. Yesterday was my end-of-summer
Buy The Book:

Discuss this book in our PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads by clicking here:

About The Author

After years in the corporate world, Barbara Pietron found herself with a second chance to decide what she wanted to be when she grew up. Her lifetime love of books and the written word returned one answer: writer. Drawing from her technical writing experience, she began by writing non-fiction magazine pieces and achieved both regional and national publication before trying her hand at her true passion, fiction. In addition to Soulshifter, Barbara is also the author of Thunderstone, Book One of the Legacy in Legend series and a prequel to ThunderstoneHeart of Ice, is available in e-book format. Book Two of the Legacy in Legend series is slated for fall of 2016. You can visit Barbara’s website at

Connect with Barbara Pietron:

Virtual Book Tour

Interview with Julie Rowe, author of Lethal Game

Welcome to Book Marketing Buzz.  Can we begin by having you tell us a little about your book?

Lethal Game is a military romance featuring biological warfare. The heroine is a virologist who’s hiding a lethal secret, she’s dying, yet she’s desperate to live long enough to accomplish some of the things on her bucket list. Hero is a soldier who is the only survivor of an IED explosion that killed most of his team. He’s now looking for an opportunity to die in the line of duty. They face a terrorist whose only goal is to kill as many American soldiers as possible with a biological weapon that could easily spread to the general population. Can a rough and tumble soldier and a fragile doctor find something more to live for in each other? Only if they outwit a madman.

What is the first thing you did to promote your book once your publisher accepted your manuscript?

I shared the sale on my website, Facebook and Twitter. J

What did your publisher do to promote your book?

My publisher is Carina Press, so it’s promoted on Carina’s social media as well as on Harlequin’s social media. The sale was also announced on Publisher’s Weekly.

I understand using the social networks to promote your books is also an effective marketing tool.  What social networks do you use and do you find any of them effective?

I use Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest to promote my books. I find them quite effective to share information with my readers, whether it’s a sale price on a book or a new release.

Besides blogging and using the social networks to promote your books, what other ways are you promoting your book?

I create my own author swag of bookmarks, handmade thank you cards, custom candy wrappers and custom post-it-note packaging. I give away as much swag as I can to people I meet and I have a couple of book stores who now recommend my ebooks by handing out my fancy bookmarks.

If you had to pick just one book marketing tool that you’ve used to promote your book, which would you say has been the most effective?

For me, it’s Twitter. I love Twitter and find it fits with my personality very well.

About The Book
TitleLethal Game
Book 2: Biological Response Team Series
Author: Julie Rowe
Publisher: Carina Press
Publication Date: October 12, 2015
Pages: 270
ISBN: 978-1459290198
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Format: eBook, PDF

Book Description:

Book Two of Biological Response Team Series
As the nation’s youngest virologist and hematologist, Captain Sophia Perry has always been one step ahead of her peers. But there’s one thing she can’t beat—cancer. She wants to make a difference in the time she has left, so when she’s sent to investigate a breakout at a Syrian refugee camp, she goes, saying nothing of her diagnosis. But saving the masses isn’t easy when the man tasked to protect her is so irresistible.

Communications Sergeant Connor Button is back on active duty after a deadly explosion, but he doesn’t feel whole again until he meets Sophia. Assigned to keep her safe, he’s prepared to die for her, but for the first time in months he truly wants to live—if only she wasn’t so determined to put them both in danger.

With a secret to keep and nothing to lose, Sophia is determined to find the source of the breakout at any cost. Violent attacks on the camp convince her that someone wants her to pay dearly. But as Sophia’s health deteriorates, Connor must find a way to help her defeat her enemies before her body defeats her.

Book Excerpt:
Security is mostly a superstition ~ Helen Keller
Chapter One
It had taken him three airplanes and over twenty-six hours
to travel more than seven thousand miles, and now he was going to have to kill
Ten feet from his room in the Navy
hotel at the American Naval base in Bahrain.
All Special Forces Communications
Sergeant Connor Button wanted was to find a bed and crash for a few hours.
What he did not need was witnessing
some idiot striking out with a hot blonde and not taking it well.
She’d just removed his hand from
her waist.
The man put it on her shoulder and
tried to bring her closer. “Aw, come on, sweetheart.”
She slid away, her voice clear
across the short distance. “No.”
dude, time to retreat.
Only, the guy didn’t. He grabbed her by the back of
the neck, hard enough to make her gasp in pain, and leaned down, his mouth
aimed for hers.
She slapped the moron, but he
didn’t get that hint either, just grabbed her hand and twisted it behind her
Con had to make himself stand still
for a second. One second, so he could throttle back the instinct to beat the
stupid fuck to death.
His jaw flexed. He wouldn’t kill the asshole, but he could hurt him real bad.
Con dropped his duffel on the floor
and stomped toward the woman and the moron whose arm he was about to break.
Into several pieces.
Small ones.
The stomping got the moron’s
attention. He glanced up, saw Con coming and his eyes went wide. He let go of
the woman so fast she wobbled off balance and fell to the floor. Con stopped to
help her while the moron ran like a track star down the hall and around a
call, asshole.
Con bent down and offered his hand
to the woman. “Are you okay?”
Her head jerked up and she stared
at him with eyes that didn’t miss a thing. She scooted away, leaving his hand
hanging in the air, then stood. Her shoulders went back and her chin rose.
He almost smiled. She was so not
interested in another man getting all up in her business. He’d make sure she
was all right, then he’d back off.
“Ma’am, did he hurt you?”
“I’m fine,” she said, retreating a
Blue-green eyes stood out in a face
framed by white-blond hair hanging in a sheet down to the middle of her back.
She was also stacked, though she wasn’t showing it off. She was following
military clothing requirements, wearing long pants and a collared shirt one
size too big, buttoned up to her neck. An asshole had just tried to sexually
assault her, but Con would bet a year’s pay that had he not come along, the
moron would have had his hands full with a pissed-off female trying to smash
his balls into paste.
He glanced down.
Her mouth was pressed into a thin
angry line, but her hands were shaking.
For the first time in months
something other than anger or despair slammed into him.
He knew just how she felt. Hyped up
on adrenaline and looking for a target.
It surprised him so much he opened
his mouth to make some inane comment or other to show her he was no threat, but
she raised a hand to stop him.
She spoke a quick, firm “Thank
you.” And then she was gone, inside the room closest to her. The click of the
lock being engaged echoed down the hall.
He blinked at the empty hallway. He
wasn’t sure she was okay, but those shaking hands and that locked door sent a
pretty clear signal that she didn’t want another man anywhere near her.
Sometimes other people just made
things worse.
He sighed, strode back to his bag,
checked his room number again and discovered he was next door to the blonde.
At least he wouldn’t have to go far
if Moron came back.
So much for getting some sleep. He’d lain awake, alert for
any noise that might indicate a problem in the room next door, but it had been
church-quiet. He got up at 0700 base time, then went in search of his new
commanding officer, Colonel Maximillian. The man had an interesting reputation,
but he trusted what his buddy, Jacob “Sharp” Foster, a former Special Forces
soldier, had to say about him. Everyone else said the colonel was one bullet
shy of a magazine. Sharp had warned him that the colonel wasn’t exactly regular
army, but he gave a shit about his people, and that was number one for Con. If
your CO had your six, at least you didn’t have to take your attention off what
was coming at you.
The colonel had a fancy lab that
didn’t exist on the base, according to official records. Officially, the lab
that did exist on paper was rated for level two containment. Good enough to run
the sort of tests any big city hospital conducted. In reality, the lab was
capable of level four containment testing. The stuff you needed to wear a
bio-suit for and breathe your own oxygen supply.
Con had to pass through two
internal checkpoints to gain entry to the nondescript building that was his
destination. Colonel Maximillian’s office was the first one inside the prefab
rectangle that housed the lab and offices. A soldier who didn’t look a day over
sixteen sat typing on a computer facing the entrance to the building.
The kid’s gaze darted over Con’s
uniform, then he stood and saluted. “Private Eugene Walsh.”
“Sergeant Connor Button, Special
“Yes, sir. Colonel Maximillian is
expecting you.” Walsh extended his hand in the direction of the first office.
“Go right in.”
Con gave him a nod, then walked
into the office.
He saluted the
salt-and-pepper-haired man, who stood and saluted back. “Sir, Sergeant Button
reporting for duty.”
“Welcome, Sergeant.” The colonel
came around his desk and offered his hand.
Con shook it once, twice, then
released a hand that hadn’t tested him beyond what would be considered polite.
“Take a seat,” the colonel said,
gesturing at one of the chairs facing his desk. “I’d like to go over your
assignment and answer any questions you might have.”
“Thank you, sir.” Con sat and
adopted a neutral body posture, back straight and hands resting lightly on his
thighs. It was harder than it should have been.
The last time he’d been in the
Middle East he’d been deployed with his unit, attempting to ascertain the
military strength of two groups of extremists in Northern Iraq and Syria. Both
groups had threatened multiple American and allied targets, as well as calling
for sympathetic citizens to carry out terrorist acts inside their own
The last time he’d been in the
Middle East, he’d been the only survivor of an IED that took out their vehicle.
Fortune had smiled on him that day. He’d been thrown clear.
More and more often, he wished he
hadn’t been so lucky.
Colonel Maximillian continued to
stare at him and seemed content to not say anything for several moments.
Con waited with the patience of a
man who’d waited days for just the right moment to take a shot at his target.
Finally, the colonel asked, “How
much do you know about your mission here?”
“Probably not enough.”
Maximillian’s face didn’t change.
“Sharp said you were smart. Are you, Sergeant Button?”
“That would depend on your
definition of smart.
“Observant, creative, organized,
able to see unusual relationships between people and information.”
“Sir, you’re looking for Sherlock
Holmes. He’s a fictional character.”
A brief smile crossed the colonel’s
face. “How would you describe yourself?”
“Flexible, determined, fuck the
Colonel Maximillian’s forehead
lowered over his eyes. “Were you aware General Stone had some reluctance in
assigning you to this mission?”
“Not directly, but it doesn’t
surprise me.”
How many conversations like this
had he had recently? Five, six? “Sir, I received injuries in an attack that
killed all the men in the armored vehicle with me. I’d be surprised if he
wasn’t hesitant.” No officer wanted to have a suicidal or homicidal soldier on
a mission. Survivor’s guilt could lead to either one. Or both.
“Do you consider yourself fit for
“Yes, sir.”
Goddamned why-questions. Why judged, weighed and measured what
was in a man’s head. What was in his head was not pretty, and not to be shared.
“Sir, I signed on to serve my
country. My service isn’t done.”
Maximillian tilted his head to one
side. “That is one of the best non-answers I’ve ever heard.”
. Con leaned forward and said in a less civilized tone, “I got thrown off
the horse. I need to get back on and finish my ride.”
“And if you don’t?”
Con’s throat closed up. “That
thought can’t be in my head.”
The colonel’s face lost its sharp
inquisitiveness for a moment, replaced by a surprising level of comprehension.
A second later it was gone and he was flipping through pages on his desk.
“You’ve had some problems with your temper since you returned to duty.”
“I’m working on that.” Anger was
easy. Acting on it was even easier.
The officer considered Con for a
couple more seconds, then nodded briskly. “My Biological Response Team is
tracking a very dangerous man who’s created his own extremely deadly strain of
anthrax. We managed to prevent an attack on a base in Afghanistan, but not
before nearly one hundred people died of the infection. We think he’s not done.
We think he’ll continue to strike at high-quality American or allied targets,
and we don’t know where he is or where he will attack next.”
Con straightened. Hunting down a
homicidal nutcase wasn’t the sort of duty he’d taken on before, but it sounded
dangerous. Good.
Holy fuck he was messed up.
Maximillian continued. “We were
successful in preventing the last attack because we had one of our infectious
disease specialists embedded with an A-team training members of the Afghan
military. General Stone agrees with me—until this man is found, we need more
cooperation between my team and army Special Forces. I asked for specific men
to work with my people. Men who are not only well trained and smart, but also
creative and who can take a step back and support his teammate or take charge
of a situation if that’s what’s needed. Jacob Foster says you’re that kind of
man. Are you?”
It might be nice to have a specific
enemy, with a face and a name, rather than a faceless one who could be anybody.
The need to kill, to avenge his dead, was a relentless voice in the back of his
head. This mission could get him the opportunity to give himself that, and
maybe a measure of peace.
“Sir.” He paused, trying hard not
to come on too strong. If he lost this chance, he might not get another. “I’m a
team player. That means I’ll play whatever role is needed by the team.”
Colonel Maximillian smiled. “Do you
mind working with a woman?”
“No, sir. Sharp mentioned the
possibility I’d be paired with a woman.” Man, woman, two-headed alien, he
didn’t care as long as they shared a common enemy.
“You’re okay with that? No
The colonel seemed unusually
the hell?
While he might smack down a fellow Special Forces soldier, he’d never lay a hand on a woman.
“Sir, I’m the youngest of five
children with four older sisters. Working with or for a woman is nothing new to
“Good.” Maximillian nodded. “I
don’t mean to sound paranoid, but the doctor you’re going to be working with is
somewhat high-strung.”
The colonel shook his head. “That’s
the wrong description. She doesn’t trust…people. I’ve been trying to find a
suitable partner for her, but I’ve been unsuccessful.”
“Most people look at her and see a
young woman who looks as if she’d have trouble with breaking a nail. Coddle her
in any way and she’ll find a way to make you miserable.”
The bottom of Con’s stomach grew
cold. “So why me?”
“Growing up with sisters is part of
This interview was a personality test.
“You’ve also been through some
challenging combat situations and I think that will give you a level of
experience she’ll respect.”
Con had to work to keep a growl out
of his voice. “I’m not going to sit around the campfire telling her war stories.”
What he’d seen wouldn’t instill confidence in anyone.
“I don’t expect you to. She works
best with people who are highly competent, who don’t brag or try to impress.”
First time he’d been complimented
on his ability to keep his trap shut.
“Another issue is her age. She’s
young, she’s a genius and she has absolutely no idea how to talk to anyone who
isn’t a scientist or doctor.”
That didn’t leave a whole lot of
people. “Genius, as in graduated from medical school really young?”
“She’s twenty-four and is the
youngest physician in the USA to have a double speciality in virology and
“Virology, I get. Hematology?”
“The study of blood cells.”
If she was an overachiever, he
could work with that. “So, work is her life, and before that, it was school?”
“S’okay. My second-oldest sister is
married to a physicist. He speaks math, and we get along just fine.”
Maximillian quirked an eyebrow.
“You speak math?”
“Nope. I speak barbecue. Everyone
has something to say about properly grilling a steak.”
The colonel laughed. “You’ll do.
Time to meet her.” He stepped out of his office and led the way down a hall.
“Oh, and call me Max. It’s shorter.”
“Thank you, sir.”
Max sighed as he opened a door with
a key and preceded Con inside.
The room they entered was part
office and part lab, with a couple of desks and two tall microscopes set up on
the end of each. Papers and boxes of slides littered both surfaces. Only one of
the desks was occupied.
A woman sat looking through the
lens of one of the microscopes. Her hair was white-blond and pulled back into a
severe bun. She wore an army uniform with a lab coat over top. When she saw
Max, she pushed away from the scope, stood and moved to meet them.
The blonde from last night. With
her hair pulled back, she could have passed for even younger than twenty-four.
He took that thought, hog-tied it and shoved it into a dark
corner. His personal mission left no room for anything beyond a professional
She also looked ready to rip
someone’s head off.
“Sophia,” Max said. “This is your
new partner, Communications Sergeant Connor Button.” He turned to Con. “Connor,
this is Captain Sophia Perry.” Her mouth, pressed into a thin line, convinced
him to pretend last night hadn’t happened. He nodded at her respectfully. “Good
to meet you, ma’am.”
“Ma’am?” she asked, crossing her
arms over her chest and displaying a huge bruise on her right hand.
Must’ve hurt.
“This is who you found to babysit
me, Max? A fossil?”
Damn, she came out swinging. Maybe
he’d let her win this bout. Con managed to keep a straight face and said in a
hesitant voice, “I’m only twenty-nine.”
“Would you rather I pair you up
with someone who follows all the
rules and regulations?” Max asked her, irritation showing in his rigid posture.
“This guy—” he pointed a thumb at Con “—hates inside-the-box thinking as much
as you do.”
“Oh yeah?” she said, looking Con
full in the face. A challenge. Why was she so pissed off? Because she didn’t
think she needed a babysitter?
He shrugged, then coughed to hide a
chuckle. If he laughed now, she’d think he was laughing at her. “I don’t like
boxes. They’re never big enough, and they’re too…square.”
She blinked at him, then narrowed
her gaze. “What did you do to draw this duty? It had to have been bad.”
Max opened his mouth, but Con
didn’t want to escalate things, so he spoke first, and went with the
unvarnished truth. “I got blown up. I spent almost seven months in hospitals
and physical therapy. The last three or four months I’ve been instructing and getting
back into shape.” He smiled at her. “When I found out what my first mission was
going to be, bodyguarding some army doctor, I thought what the fuck? I sure as shit didn’t want easy duty. But having talked with Max here, I’ve changed my mind.”
He shifted his gaze to Max’s face. “This isn’t easy duty, is it, sir?”
“No. It’s not a matter of if there will be another biological
weapon attack somewhere in this part of the world, it’s when.”
“My role isn’t just to bodyguard
Dr. Perry, is it?”
“No.” Max began pacing back and
forth between Con and Sophia. “We have intel that points to the Biological
Response Team as a specific target. I don’t want you to just protect Sophia, I
need you two to be a team. All of us are being paired with Special Forces
soldiers, even myself.”
“Assassination?” Con asked. The
idea of it made the back of his neck itch.
“Very possible. Sabotage is another
“Have any attempts been made?”
“Yes. Dr. Samuels and her Green
Beret were nearly killed in a trap I believe was set for them. We have an enemy
who is intelligent, ruthless and fearless.”
“Can I get everything you have on
this guy?” Con asked.
“My assistant will have it ready
for you in an hour or two.” Max turned to him. “Have you been assigned
“I’m going to have you moved to the
room next to Sophia’s.”
The woman in question opened her
mouth to say something unpleasant—he was sure from the way she’d screwed up her
nose—which is why Con spoke first again. “Are you sure that’s necessary?” He
looked down, like he was thinking hard. “Do you want to advertise to the whole
base that I’m her bodyguard, or would you like to keep it below the radar?”
Max gave him a dirty look. “Whose
side are you on?”
“Hers, sir.”
“Fine,” Max said, with bit of an
impatient edge to his voice. “I’ll check to see where you’re housed now. If
it’s not too far, you can stay where you are.” Max pressed his lips together,
glared at them both, then stomped off.
Con looked at Sophia.
She looked back at him, snorted and
went back to her microscope. “Nice attempt to come to my rescue. Again. But I
don’t need anyone to rescue me.”
She needed to talk to someone about
the moron. To prevent fear and anger from getting too deep a hold on her brain.
Despite how fast things had
happened, the human mind had a way of warping events so the memory of them
seemed to take a thousand times longer than the reality had.
Hell, he was a walking testament
for how three seconds of hell could totally screw up the rest of a man’s life.
Or take it.
Listen to him passing judgment on
her mental state, when he’d done his level best to keep the shrinks out of his.
Right now, he just had to convince her he was on her side. He wanted this assignment. “I know.”
“Really?” Sarcasm turned the word
into something sharp and heavy. “You just met me. How would you know that?”
“I saw you in action last night.”
She froze, and for a moment the
expression on her face was a mixture of anger, fear and disgust. A second
later, it was gone, smoothed away as if it had never been there.
What was that?
Without looking at him, she said,
“Babysitting me is going to be a complete bore for a soldier’s soldier like
you. I’ll tell Max to find someone else.”

Buy The Book:

Discuss this book in our PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads by clicking here:

About The Author

Julie Rowe’s first career as a medical lab technologist in Canada took her to the North West Territories and northern Alberta, where she still resides. She loves to include medical details in her romance novels, but admits she’ll never be able to write about all her medical experiences because, “No one would believe them!”.

In addition to writing contemporary and historical medical romance, and fun romantic suspense for Entangled Publishing and Carina Press, Julie has short stories in Fool’s Gold, the Mammoth Book of ER Romance, Timeless Keepsakes and Timeless Escapes anthologies. Her book SAVING THE RIFLEMAN (book #1 WAR GIRLS) won the novella category of the 2013 Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence. AIDING THE ENEMY (book #3 WAR GIRLS) won the novella category of the 2014 Colorado Romance Writer’s Award of Excellence. Her writing has also appeared in several magazines such as Romantic Times Magazine, Today’s Parent, and Canadian Living.

Connect with Julie:

Virtual Book Tour

Interview with Daniel R. Mathews, author of The Unseen Kingdom

Welcome to Book Marketing Buzz.  Can we begin by having you tell us a little about your book?

The Unseen Kingdom is a coming-of-age horror themed novel that pits five adolescents against a Lovecraftian conspiracy. A group of mysterious children with supernatural abilities transport the boys to a land they call The Realm of Dreams and Darkness, where the fabled ancient city of R’lyeh awaits them. As the mysterious master of the city calls them from the dark cathedral high above the city, the boys discover evidence of a cult working behind the scenes in their town. As a strange malady begins to afflict the community, the boys race against time to uncover the secrets buried in the town’s history before Halloween night.

What is the first thing you did to promote your book once your publisher accepted your manuscript?

I had already booked a blog tour for The Unseen Kingdom several months in advance. While blog tours have not garnered significant sales for me at this point, I continue to believe that it aids in solidifying my brand for search engine optimization (SEO). This normally would not be my first choice for a release strategy, but currently my marketing budget borders on non-existent.

I understand using the social networks to promote your books is also an effective marketing tool.  What social networks do you use and do you find any of them effective?

I’ve been nurturing my Twitter account for the past few months. I’ve successfully grown my followers from a couple dozen to over 1,200. At this point, I’ve tried not to over market my book. Instead, I’m concentrating on establishing consistency in posting frequency, topics and level of quality. Since I primary write in the genres of horror and sci-fi for LGBT teens, so my topics center on those subjects.

I do have a Facebook account, but honestly I’ve gained little traction through this platform.

Besides blogging and using the social networks to promote your books, what other ways are you promoting your book?

I am making use of a service called Bublish, which allows me to post excerpts of my work, accompanied by my comments. I’ve used this to discuss various topics and concepts, leveraging my own book excerpts to serve as direct examples to illustrate my points. These excerpts are shared through the Bublish website and Twitter. These “book bubbles” consistently drive traffic to my Amazon and B&N buy links for a minimal monthly fee. I do have evidence that some of this traffic is converting, though in minimal amounts. However, it’s enough to justify paying for the service.

If you had to pick just one book marketing tool that you’ve used to promote your book, which would you say has been the most effective?

In terms of tangible results, Bublish continues to be the only tool that has produced quantifiable results for me. However, I have seen some sales spikes corresponding with reviews of my book. Ultimately, there will never be a single tool that results in appreciable sales of a book. An author or a publishing company will need to leverage multiple tools over a long duration of time to have any chance of gaining traction in this competitive market.

About The Book

Title: The Unseen Kingdom
Author: Daniel R. Mathews
Publisher: Lost Legacy Press
Publication Date: September 19, 2015
Format: Paperback – 562 pages / eBook  / PDF
ISBN: 978-0990710721
Genre: YA / LGBT / Horror / Science Fiction

Book Description:

A group of friends must band together to defeat an ancient evil in Daniel R. Mathews’s terrifying debut, The Unseen Kingdom.

In a small New England town, thirteen-year-old Tommy Wilson’s biggest worry is coming out to his close-knit group of friends. All of that changes, however, when the boys discover a dream portal to R’lyeh—home to the Titan god Cthulhu himself.

Inhabited by monstrous creatures and eerie children who have appointed Tommy and his friends their new “apostles,” R’lyeh becomes a horrifying yet darkly fascinating world that proves to be increasingly real.

Meanwhile, the town’s population is suddenly overrun with a mysterious epidemic that threatens everyone. As the boys struggle to cope with what is happening, Tommy comes closer than ever to discovering the dark secret that lurks within R’lyeh itself—but will the price prove to be too costly? And, can the boys unlock the link between the secrets of R’lyeh and the devastation of their town’s population before it’s too late?

A truly unique work of fiction, The Unseen Kingdom is an LGBT coming-of-age novel skillfully infused with edge-of-your-seat horror, resulting in a wildly entertaining novel that will leave you guessing until the very last page.

Book Excerpt:

CH A P T E R 1

The dust covered yellow school bus rumbled down the cracked asphalt road,
shaking the children inside. Tommy’s body was inclined back against his
seat, his feet planted at the top of the green vinyl covered seat in front of
him. He alternated between glancing at his best friend Brian and peering
out the window at the blur of the fading autumn colors along the road.
Kevin was sitting rather imperiously at the back of the bus, grimacing down
at his cell phone that he removed from his pocket every couple of minutes.

Unable to resist commenting, Carlos leaned across the aisle. “Alright,
what’s the deal, Kevin? You got a hot date or something?”

Kevin’s face flushed slightly. “Uh…yeah! Jealous much?”

Despite his retort, his hands were shaking. Sunlight streaming through
the windows revealed a rather puffy ring of black and blue flesh underneath
his right eye. Tommy spotted the clumsy attempt to hide the bruise with
makeup. For an instant, the two boys’ eyes met but Kevin cast his eyes
downward, looking ashamed. He looked at his phone again, and Tommy
knew why.

A smirk curled across Carlos’ lips as he quipped, “Yeah, right. Your left
hand isn’t a date!” A chorus of chuckles emanated from the kids sitting in
front of the group of boys.

Kevin turned to face him and punched the boy in the shoulder with a
dull thwack. Before he could say anything, Kevin leaned back in his seat
and said, “Just FYI, it’s my right hand.” The children in earshot giggled at
Kevin’s assertion.

After rubbing his shoulder, Carlos looked back at Kevin. “Seriously,
dude, what’s up?” Tommy looked over at him and discreetly touched his
own face, to draw Carlos’ attention to Kevin’s bruise. After Carlos had realized
what he meant, the group became quiet.

Kevin put his phone away, leaned back against the window facing his
friends and forced a smile. “The only problem I have is your ugly face.”
Carlos flipped Kevin off, and poked Jacob who was giggling at his expense.

Tommy glanced at Brian and smiled. When he returned the smile,
Tommy looked down, his face brightening. Carlos and Jacob nudged one
another and pointed at the pair. Carlos was dozing in the sunlight, while
Jacob leaned against him listening to music on his headphones, watching
Tommy and Brian with bemused interest.

Kevin shook his head and grinned knowingly back at Jacob. Tommy
caught the boys’ conspiratorial glances and turned his head to the side. He
felt he was the punch line of an inside joke sometimes, but wasn’t quite sure
why. His curiosity was interrupted by his cell phone vibrating in his pocket.
He dug the phone out and read the text message from his mother.

“Yeah! It’s here!” Tommy exclaimed as he pumped his fist in the air

His voice rousted Carlos from his slumber. “What’s here? Another My
Little Pony?” he asked.

“Your birthday was last month, dork. No, my Halloween costume,”
Tommy responded matter-of-factly.

Kevin spun his hand around in a circle. “Uh, and…”

“It’s a surprise!” Tommy said with a mischievous grin, staring into
Brian’s grey eyes.

Carlos huffed with annoyance. “Dude, if you wear the same costume as
me again this year I’m going to kick your ass.”

“You’re still going as the red Master Chief, right?” Tommy asked with
sudden concern.
Carlos nodded affirmatively. “You’re going as a Templar, right,

Brian responded affirmatively, “I got some chain mail, and Mom
bought me a historically accurate tabard and helmet to go with it! Now if I
could use Dad’s old sword, the outfit would be perfect.”

“Even with the sword, I’m still going to own you,” Carlos said confidently.
He looked over at Kevin. “You decide on an outfit yet?”

Kevin shrugged, breaking eye contact with the others. “I don’t know if
my father’s going to let me go.”

“He’s gotta! There’s going to be ten thousand dollars in prizes. This is
going to be the best Halloween ever!” Tommy said exuberantly.

“And, you know, nobody does Halloween better than us!” Brian proclaimed

“Alright…alright. I’ll come up with something, I’m sure,” Kevin assured
his friends.

“What about you, Jacob?” Kevin asked.

Jacob smiled. “It’s a secret.”

“I’ll take care of this,” Carlos said, poking him mercilessly in the side,
causing him to squeal. The bus driver cleared his throat loudly, glaring at
the boys through the rear view mirror.

“Quit it!” Jacob protested, his face turning red enough to mask his pale
freckles. “I’m going as a vampire,” he surrendered begrudgingly.

“God, another sparkly vampire!” Carlos teased.

“No way, dork! A real vampire!” he retorted. Tommy and Brian laughed
and applauded.

Tommy leaned back and peered out the window again. The bus sputtered
to a stop, letting a few children out. He sang under his breath, “Eight
more days to Halloween, Halloween. Eight more days to Halloween, Silver
Shamrock.” Brian’s reflection in the window beamed at him while Carlos
and Kevin simultaneously rolled their eyes.

As the bus rounded a bend adjacent to the swamp that surrounded
much of the town, Tommy caught a glimpse of a boy wearing filthy blue
denim overalls and a wool beret. However, the boy disappeared behind the
veil of swirling white smoke left by the bus’s exhaust. There was something
inherently disquieting about the boy.

The bus ride grew progressively quieter as the bus approached the end
of its daily journey. His eyes widened when he saw the same boy from earlier
emerging from behind a row of wild hawthorn bushes. This time he
made direct eye contact with the mysterious boy. A wicked smile danced
across the child’s otherwise emotionless face, causing Tommy’s body to
shudder involuntarily. There was something terrible in the child’s visage,
forcing him to look away from those hollow, soulless eyes that invaded his
consciousness. Tommy looked up to see the bus driver staring intently at him through the rear view mirror. The rest of the group had fallen into
their own little worlds, lulled into virtual slumber by the constant droning
of the engine and swaying of the bus. He sank down in his seat, trying to
avoid the bus driver’s penetrating stare. He glanced over at Brian, who was
playing with his phone.

Tommy felt some relief when the final stop was reached and it was time
to offload. Carlos, Jacob and Brian were already halfway down the aisle
before the bus reached a stop, leaving Kevin and Tommy as the last passengers
to disembark. As Tommy descended the stairs, the bus driver reached
out and grabbed his hand. “You’ve seen them, haven’t you?” he asked.

A startled Tommy gave the bus driver a bewildered stare as he struggled
to withdraw his hand from the man’s tight grasp. “Seen who? What are
you talking about?” he asked, growing fearful of the man’s narrowing eyes.

“The children of the Great Unseen have revealed themselves to you,
and now it’s your turn to hear HIS call,” the man whispered in a raspy
voice. He tried to back away as the man’s eyes darkened, much like the boy
he had seen earlier.

“You’re hurting me!” an increasingly flustered Tommy stammered, trying
to pull away from the man’s grip.

Like a passing summer storm, the man’s face brightened, and he released
Tommy’s wrist. “Well, what are you waiting for, boy? It’s Friday night. You
got the whole weekend ahead of you. Now git!” He smiled warmly at the astounded
boy. Tommy stepped off the bus, confronted by Kevin and Brian.

“What the hell happened?” Kevin demanded.

Tommy could do little but shrug his slender shoulders. “I don’t know.
He was mad about something; it didn’t make any sense. Whatever it was,
he got over it quickly.”

Kevin watched with concern as the bus disappeared down the road, before
turning his attention to the dilapidated two-story greyish white house
in front of him. “Well, I can’t stall any longer,” he said with a sigh.

“What are you doing guys doing tonight?” Tommy asked.

Kevin shifted his weight. “I think I better stay in and work on

Brian said, “I promised Mom I’d clean up around the house tonight,
but I’ll have the rest of the weekend free after my homework is done.”
Tommy looked a little dejected, but at least this afforded him some time to
check out his Halloween costume.

“We’ll see you tomorrow morning, right?” Tommy asked Kevin

Kevin forced a smile and gave him a playful push. “Yeah, Bro, I’ll see
you guys tomorrow. We’ll go into town or something.” Tommy and Brian
said their good-byes and the boys parted company for the day.

Tommy’s house was a little larger than Kevin’s, painted a similar
weather-beaten white although clearly more care and maintenance has been
put into his house than Kevin’s. He bounded through the front door, his
eyes scanning the entranceway and hallway for any signs of his package. He
poked his head into the kitchen, spying the nondescript brown box sitting
on the table between his mother and father.

He made a beeline for the package before his mom intercepted him.
“Not even an acknowledgment of us being in the room?” she mockingly
admonished him, wiping the curly locks of blonde hair from his face.

“Stop, Mom! Hi, Dad!” he blurted out as he reached for the box.

“So, remind me why you needed to spend six months of your allowance
for this?” his father asked while Tommy tore open the package

“It’s a surprise for…” Tommy cut himself short. “I mean, I’m just
looking forward to Halloween.” The boy delved into the contents of the
package, procuring large sheets of fine brown fur wrapped in translucent

“Is there something you’d like to talk to us about?” his father asked
softly, casting a glance at his wife.

“You know, you can talk to us about anything,” Tommy’s mom said

Tommy pulled out the lower jaw of the werewolf costume, running his
fingers along the jagged teeth as he looked up at his parents with confusion.
“What are you talking about?”

“Well, we thought maybe you’d like to talk about someone,” Tommy’s
father said.

Tommy thought for a moment, unsure where his parents were going
with this line of questioning, though admittedly he felt embarrassed as a
sloppy grin crossed his face imagining Brian’s reaction when he sees the
costume. Before he could assemble the pieces in his mind, he blurted out
Kevin’s name.

“Kevin? What about him?” his mother asked, casting a confused gaze
over at her husband on this unexpected subject.

“I think his dad beat him up last night. He was wearing makeup to
cover up a black eye, but he didn’t have it yesterday,” Tommy said, looking out the kitchen window toward Kevin’s house. “I’m worried about him,”
he added.

“That’s a serious accusation, Tommy. Has Kevin given you any indication
of this?” his father asked, looking troubled.

Tommy shook his head. “No, but he acts afraid to go home. Every day
on the bus you can see him start shaking the closer we get.”

“That’s a worrying sign, Tommy, but we need to know the whole story.
Kevin is lucky to have you as a friend. I think the best thing you can do
right now is be there for him, and let him know that when he’s ready to talk,
you’ll listen,” his father instructed.

“Is there anything else, anything Kevin’s said that would make you feel
there’s trouble with his father?” his mother interjected.

Tommy thought for a moment. “Kevin’s mentioned his dad drinks a
lot. I think that’s when he gets in trouble.”

His mother rolled her eyes and shook her head. “Isn’t it always?” she
whispered to no one in particular. “Your father is right, Tommy. Let know
Kevin that you’re there for him. There is a counselor at your school trained
for this kind of thing, so Kevin has options if he’s in trouble.”

“Couldn’t you talk to his dad, make him stop?” he asked his father.

Tommy’s father leaned back in his chair and sighed. “It’s not that easy,
kiddo. Nobody likes to be told how to raise their child, and I’m afraid if we
stick our noses into his business, he might take it out on Kevin. It would be
best if the school became involved in this.”

Disappointed, Tommy knew this was a problem that couldn’t easily be
solved. He pulled out the remaining mass of soft brown fur and the upper jaw of his werewolf costume. “Some assembly required,” he moaned, pulling
out a plastic bag full of plastic claws.

“I hope you’re not expecting me to do all the work,” Tommy’s mother

“Uh, no, of course not, Mom!” he replied, his bright, blue pleading eyes
belying his underlying intent.

“Well, if you like I can take the measurements and help you get started
this weekend,” his mom offered diplomatically.

His face brightened. “Thanks, Mom, that’d be awesome!”

“Alright, go get started on your homework. Dinner will be ready in
about an hour,” she concluded, sending the Tommy and his costume out
of the kitchen.

His father shook his head and laughed. “I have a feeling this is going to
be an unforgettable Halloween.”

Tommy bounded into his room, and spread all the individual components
of the werewolf costume across his bed. The macabre mass of soft
fur, jaws and claws melded naturally with the horror movie posters hanging
on the far wall, above the shelves filled with rows of horror movie
DVDs and a couple dozen similarly themed novels. He plopped himself
down in his wooden desk chair and rummaged through his backpack for
his homework assignments.

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About The Author

An avid reader of science fiction, horror, and fantasy, Daniel R. Mathews is a novelist and nonfiction writer whose books feature LGBT youth braving danger with honor and dignity, including his personal memoir, The Demons of Plainville, and debut horror novel, The Unseen Kingdom.

For the past two decades, Mathews has worked as a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certified ground instructor, meteorologist, and a member of the web development and Internet technical support community. He currently lives in Flagstaff, Arizona.

Connect with Daniel R. Mathews:

Virtual Book Tour

Spiney The Unwanted Christmas Tree by Wayne McLendon Book Blast – Win a $25 Amazon Gift Card!

Title: Spiney The Unwanted Christmas Tree

Author: Wayne Mclendon

Publisher: AuthorHouse

Genre: Children’s Fiction

Format: Paperback

This was Spiney’s Christmas. He was almost eleven feet tall and much bigger than the other trees. He began getting ready weeks before Thanksgiving. He would shake his branches to remove all of the dead nettle and old bird nests that had been used in the spring. Spiney still let the birds perch in his branches. He really liked that because they were his friends.


I am a grandfather who graduated from Auburn University in fisheries in December of 1969. I have owned and operated a fish farm for over forty-five years. I wrote the book Spiney: The Unwanted Christmas Tree page by page on a long trip hauling fish from Auburn, AL, to Lake Village, AR. I have never written a book before. The book, Spiney, was written for my grandchildren. I wanted them to realize that Christmas trees do not always come from a tree farm or a tree lot. Finding the perfect tree was always a special event for me, my brother, my sister, and my dad. The story, Spiney, was written about trees that were not perfect and were never chosen to be someone’s centerpiece for the Christmas holidays..

Wayne is giving away a $25 Gift Card!

Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Gift Certificate to the e-retailer of your choice
  • This giveaway begins November 2 and ends on November 13.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on November 14.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.

Good luck everyone!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Interview with Christine Amsden, author of Madison’s Song

Title: Madison’s Song

Author: Christine Amsden

Publisher: Twilight Times Books

Pages: 275

Genre: Paranormal Fiction

Format: Kindle

Her voice is enchanting; his soul is black…Madison Carter has been terrified of Scott Lee since the night he saved her from an evil sorcerer – then melted into a man-eating monster before her eyes. The werewolf is a slave to the moon, but Madison’s nightmares are not.Despite her fears, when Madison’s brother, Clinton, is bitten by a werewolf, she knows there is only one man who can help. A man who frightens her all the more because even in her nightmares, he also thrills her.

Together for the first time since that terrible night, Scott and Madison drive to Clinton’s home only to discover that he’s vanished! Frantic now, Madison must overcome her fears and uncover hidden strengths if she hopes to save him. And she’s not the only one fighting inner demons. Scott’s are literal, and they have him convinced that he will never deserve the woman he loves.

Praise for Cassie Scot: ParaNormal Detective

“In this entertaining series opener, Amsden (The Immortality Virus) introduces readers to the eponymous Cassie, a decidedly mundane member of a magical family. …Readers will enjoy Cassie’s fish-out-of-water struggles as she fights magical threats with little more than experience and bravado.” ~ Publishers Weekly


Madison’s Song is available for order at




Thank you for your time in answering our questions  Let’s begin by having you explain to us why you decided to write a book?

I don’t think I ever decided to write a book. It more like a sick compulsion!

Is this your first book?

No, it’s my seventh!

Can you tell us a little about your publishing journey?

I’ve had all of my books published through Twilight Times Books, a small but respected press that has been instrumental in my success. Not every book is an instant hit; my first two titles (Touch of Fate and The Immortality Virus) sold marginally well. Then, when my publisher read Cassie Scot: ParaNormal Detective she sent me a contract within a few days. I felt good about the manuscript, but as my own worst critic it felt amazing to have her vote of confidence – and she was right! The Cassie Scot series has been immensely popular and finally brought me that sense of connection with the audience that I was always hoping for.

What lessons do you feel you learned about the publishing industry?

Understand what success is – and what it isn’t. I love writing, and I always plan to do it, but I’m also an editor now because I can’t put out enough books each year to make a living off of writing alone. For a while, that made me feel terrible – but why? Editing is something I enjoy, it’s supporting my writing habit, and I still get to do what I love! I always tell beginning writers to write because they love it. I’m finally taking my own advice.

If you had the chance to change something regarding how you got published, what would you change?

To tell you the truth, I wish I had waited before getting my first book published. It’s good – it even got an honorable mention in the Eric Hoffer awards – but each book I’ve written has been so much better than the one before that I wish I had just waited a bit. Not been so anxious. I see a lot of that in new writers today – especially in the self-publishing world (but not just there). I’ve chatted with other authors who have published multiple books and many of us wish we’d waited to publish our second books!

Did you credit any person or organization with helping you get published?

Lida Quillen at Twilight Times Books.

What’s the best advice you can give to aspiring authors?

Write because you love it!

Darn, I already said that. Maybe I should come up with something else. Let’s try …

Do not underestimate the importance of quality editing!

Christine Amsden has been writing fantasy and science fiction for as long as she can remember. She loves to write and it is her dream that others will be inspired by this love and by her stories. Speculative fiction is fun, magical, and imaginative but great speculative fiction is about real people defining themselves through extraordinary situations. Christine writes primarily about people and relationships, and it is in this way that she strives to make science fiction and fantasy meaningful for everyone.

At the age of 16, Christine was diagnosed with Stargardt’s Disease, a condition that effects the retina and causes a loss of central vision. She is now legally blind, but has not let this slow her down or get in the way of her dreams. In addition to writing, Christine teaches workshops on writing at Savvy Authors. She also does some freelance editing work. Christine currently lives in the Kansas City area with her husband, Austin, who has been her biggest fan and the key to her success. They have two beautiful children.

Visit Christine’s website.



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Interview with Andrew Barbour, author of The Red Book

619150_Tour Banner_L1

The Red BookTitle: The Red Book

Author: Andrew Barbour

Publisher: AuthorHouse

Pages: 252

Genre: Science Fiction

Format: Ebook

This is the culmination of what began on October 6, 2013, at 8:12 a.m.

It was to be The Blue Book: The Ultimate Project.

In increasing clarity, these books show first the preparation and then the arrival in the first book—which, I freely admit, is not easy to read.

But any change that I made, made it nearly impossible to continue until I reversed the change that I had made.

It was realized that things had to be effectively translated. This is what led to the creation of The Red Book. So using what I had learned and figured out, I applied the same technique to a digital camera, and the results speak for themselves.

The Red Book is available for purchase at


What is you favorite quality about yourself?

An ability to keep moving forward in spite of everything else being in opposition.

What is your least favorite quality about yourself?

An intolerance for the hypocrisy of others.

When did you first know you could be a writer?

I never did know and I’m still don’t. To think of myself as a writer makes me deeply uncomfortable.

Who or what influenced your writing over the years?

A truth.

How did you come up with the title for your book?

It was initially the intent that a red tint was going to used for the images, again connected with the light frequencies, the idea of the red tint was dismissed but the name remained. It was ony after I had completed The Red Book;Project Complete that I learned about the US Government Red Book Project as another acknowledgement of what had been or is being attempted.

What was the hardest part of writing your book?

Coming to terms with the reality that we are far from alone on this planet and the fact I was aware of what people would think, because i thought it often enough myself but I had to continue in spite of this.

Interview with Bluette Matthey, author of Black Forest Reckoning

Bluette MattheyBluette Matthey is a third generation Swiss American and an avid lover of European cultures. She has decades of travel and writing experience. She is a keen reader of mysteries, especially those that immerse the reader in the history, inhabitants, culture, and cuisine of new places. Her passion for travel, except airports (where she keeps a mystery with her to pass the time), is shared by her husband, who owned a tour outfitter business in Europe. Bluette particularly loves to explore regions that are not on the “15 days in Europe” itineraries. She also enjoys little-known discoveries, such as the London Walks, in well-known areas. She firmly believes that walking and hiking bring her closer to the real life of any locale. Bluette maintains a list of hikes and pilgrimages throughout Europe for future exploration. She lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, with her husband, faithful dog, and band of loving cats.
You can visit Bluette’s website at

For More Information

Thank you for your time in answering our questions  Let’s begin by having you explain to us why you decided to write a book?
I love to create and I can’t draw, act, or play the banjo, so I write.
Is this your first book?
This is the third book in my Hardy Durkin travel mystery series. I am determined to write my way through the alphabet with my titles.  The ‘A’ book is Abruzzo Intrigue, ‘B’ is this one, Black Forest Reckoning, ‘C’ is Corsican Justice, and ‘D’ is Dalmatian Traffick.  I have twenty-two more to go, God willing.
Can you tell us a little about your publishing journey?
We made a decision to self-publish since about 70% of today’s books are self-published.  My first two books, Corsican Justice and Abruzzo Intrigue, were published in paper back and e-book; Black Forest Reckoning has been published as an e-book only, thus far. Our experience to date is that new-writer novels sell better as e-books.  I have an author website:, and we use social media as much as possible to promote the books, especially the Pump Up Your Book virtual book tour.  We’ve also developed our own publishing site:
What lessons do you feel you learned about the publishing industry?
Our experience so far has been that e-books sell better than hard print, which is why my current book, Black Forest Reckoning, is only being offered as an e-book.  Also, we’ve been pleased with the virtual book tour company we hire to promote my books; it is money well-spent.
If you had the chance to change something regarding how you got published, what would you change?
More use of pre-publishing premotions via social media and the internet.
Did you credit any person or organization with helping you get published?
My husband did all the research on deciding where and how to publish, and he is also the person who formats my books and does an excellent job of editing.
What’s the best advice you can give to aspiring authors?
Don’t be discouraged easily, work with someone who will tell you the truth, constructively, and spend time doing the research for your book.

blackforesFrontB-3Title: Black Forest Reckoning

Author: Bluette Matthey

Publisher: Blue Shutter Publishing

Pages: 299

Genre: Travel Mystery

Outfitter Hardy Durkin and company are visiting the Black Forest area of Germany, staying in the guest wing of a local castle, Schloss Haeflin. In the midst of hiking the Black Forest, enjoying all things Swabian, and spending a day in Baden-Baden, the hikers find themselves at ground zero for coeds disappearing from the nearby University of Freiburg and foul play is suspected. Unresolved personal issues of several members of the group threaten the tour’s cohesion, and Hardy discovers the Baron, who owns the schloss, has stolen someone’s identity as well as his fortune. Ever the sleuth, Hardy untangles the web of deceit, madness, and murder in ‘The Black Forest Reckoning’.

Interview with Andrew Barbour, author of The Blue Book

Title: The Blue Book

Author: Andrew Barbour

Publisher: AuthorHouse

Pages: 776

Genre: Science Fiction

Format: Ebook

The Blue Book; The Ultimate Project is the Terrestrial Non Human Project to introduce us to their existence alongside us on this Planet. With unique photographs of interaction between a variety of Craft, also including arrivals and departures. It’s time to know!


The Blue Book is available for purchase at


What was the hardest part about writing your book?
Coming to terms with the reality that we are far from alone on this planet, and the fact that I was aware of what people would think, because I thought it often enough myself but had to continue in spite of this.
Do you have a favorite excerpt from the book? If so, can you share it?
Yes I do, The first 14 pages in The Bigger Picture, the series of anomalies that apear to be passing through the cloud cover around the area of the tv ariel, until page 8 where a single anomaly appears to move into the top right hand corner, and apparently attempts to interfere with the photographs being taken. Succesful in the first attempt and only partially in the second attempt, revealing a series of large anomalies that is the only image displacement in the picture, the roofs and chimneys despite the distortion have no displacement, and on page 14 what is possibly the rear end of what was attempted to be hidden.
What do you hope readers will take away after reading the book?
The beginning of a realization or thought that maybe we are not alone on this planet.
Who or what was the inspiration for the book?
A truth to be shown.
Have you had a mentor? If so can you talk about them a little?
I have no mentors.
I have heard it said in order to be a good writer you have to be a good reader as well? Do you find this to be true? And if you are a reader, do you have a favorite genre and/ or author?
I’m not sure if that is true in this case specifically the closest I get to reading in this case science fiction is The Hitchikers Guide to the galaxy but mainly for the originality of the concept. I mainly read Raymond E. Fiest and Markus Heitz because I enjoy the scale of the writing, and the originality of the early fantasy writers like Robert E. Vardeman, Micheal Morecock and Robert E. Howard.

Interview with Beatrice Blue Pipe, author of The Bosom of Abraham

Title: The Bosom of Abraham

Author: Beatrice Blue Pipe

Publisher: iUniverse

Pages: 90

Genre: Historical Biography

Format: Kindle/Paperback

As a child, Beatrice Blue Pipe was confused and hurt by what her teachers told her.

As a student, her teachers at Canada’s Christian-administered residential school system taught that God hated Canada’s First Peoples and First Nations. From Blue Pipe’s perspective, she was condemned. As she grew, the hateful lessons of her youth slowly consumed her, and like too many others, she attempted to silence those demons with alcohol and thoughts of suicide.

But as an adult, she is now a powerful advocate for her culture and dignity. By exploring the devastating impact of the Canadian government’s educational system on the minds and spirits of First Nation children, Beatrice aims to expose the negative impact these multifaceted, inhuman legislative polices have had on her community. Tragically, these practices continue to have a grave, detrimental impact on the well-being of First Nations people.

In The Bosom of Abraham, she celebrates the incredibly resilient First People. Canada’s systematic and multigenerational attempt to eradicate their cultural ceremonies and languages failed. The ancient cultural knowledge and strength of First Nations people survives today, which ensures the survival of future generations.

The Bosom of Abraham is the story of Beatrice’s journey as a child, a daughter and a student—who resists the efforts of the system to crush her—into that of a woman, a warrior and a leader, in the effort to celebrate, protect and preserve her cultural and personal heritage.

About the Author

Beatrice Blue Pipe is a Nakoda-Cree woman from the Whitebear First Nation Community in southeastern Saskatchewan. A certified life-skills coach, she advocates for cultural programming, as well as the preservation and restoration of the Nakoda language and culture. Beatrice graduated with honours from the University of Brandon in Manitoba.

Interview with Lisa de Nikolits, author of Between The Cracks She Fell

Welcome to Book Marketing Buzz.  Can we begin by having you tell us a little about your book?

The book is a thriller/suspense novel about a young woman who takes the summer to live off the grid in an abandoned old school. My protagonist Joss finds herself having to make mortgage payments without help from her depressed, stoner boyfriend who has just moved out, and the company she works for folds leaving her suddenly unemployed, and she is forced to sell her house, on which she takes a financial loss. She decides to camp out in a vacant complex of school buildings to give herself time to decide what to do next. It turns out the building is used by a gang of teenagers for wild, drug-fueled parties and Joss soon finds herself both repelled by their charismatic evil leader, as well as sexually attracted to him. She knows he is dangerous even before she finds his girlfriend’s dead and violently abused body in the school library. During this time, she meets and befriends two other people in difficulty: Emma, a narcissistic thief living with her dog in a stolen car and Ashley, a young homosexual who is heartbroken by the fact that he has been expelled from the Jehovah’s Witness church because he is gay. When her former boyfriend reappears as a born again Christian, Joss is immersed in a journal she found that contains the thoughts of a Muslim teenager who becomes increasingly radicalized. Her struggle to understand her former boyfriend and this young man’s spiritual quests prepare her to make some hard decisions about her future. Between the Cracks She Fell is about a woman who falls off the grid and the explosive consequences of betrayal, survival in troubled times, and the pervasiveness of religious domination.

What is the first thing you did to promote your book once your publisher accepted your manuscript?

I designed the cover! I am an art director by day and I design my own covers, so the first thing I did was to create a cover that my publisher and I both loved. Then I wrote a synopsis for the book and put that on my website and then I started getting the world out to Facebook and Twitter.

After that, what happened?

I started contacting events people in Toronto to set up readings. You have to time things carefully or people get fatigued – you can’t start promoting things too early or you burn people out before the book is even available. I did a lot of planning behind the scenes to prepare but not too much up front.

What did your publisher do to promote your book?

My publisher is amazing. She printed advanced reader copies and sent them out. She puts out a Spring and Fall catalogue and the book was in there. She posted links and blurbs on the website. She tweeted and retweeted promo posts that I had put up. She also helped me get readings and meet-and-greets at bookstores.

What’s your opinion on blogging? Do you see that it is helping sell your book or is it not making much difference in terms of sales?  If you blog, do you blog often?

I blog on Goodreads and I don’t have a schedule. I only blog if I have something I really want to talk about. I couldn’t tell you if blogging makes any difference to sales. I think it’s all part and parcel of the overall selling package and presentation of the book. These days there are so many aspects to promoting and selling a book and I’m not sure if we can point the finger at any one single thing being the definitive must-have. I try not to think in terms of book sales – I don’t write a blog and think oh, this is a good one, this one will help me get some sales for sure. Instead I focus on reader interest. I always try to write things that people will find helpful, or useful or relevant or entertaining or hopefully all of those.

I understand using the social networks to promote your books is also an effective marketing tool.  What social networks do you use and do you find any of them effective?

I have an author page on Facebook, a personal page on Facebook, I am on Twitter a lot, Pinterest, Instagram. I have a website and of course, Goodreads. I am also on LinkedIn. I find them all very effective when used collaboratively and without expectation. Expectation is me expecting to sell x amount of books correlating to x amounts of posts on this or that site and I don’t think anyone can do that – people love to point fingers at people who have done exactly that but then again, how many people actually win the lottery? I’m not a cynic, I’m a realist!

I am also on two writing sites, Scriggler and Wattpad and I use those not as promotional tools but as places to have fun, post short stories or poems that I write to keep myself fresh and in the writing game. I think that if you see social media in terms of end results, it will be disappointing and feel like a lot of hard work. But if you have fun with it, then at the very least you are getting a good sense of camaraderie and fellowship and picking up good tips and feeling like you are part of a community. Social media is a great community and that’s primarily why I hang on on the sites that I do.

Besides blogging and using the social networks to promote your books, what other ways are you promoting your book?

I am doing a lot of readings in bookstores and libraries. I am also part of a group called the Mesdames of Mayhem and we have a new volume of short stories coming out in Fall, titled Thirteen O’Clock and we are very excited about that. So there is all that promoting that we do in person, for the Mesdames and my book gets to benefit from that. Readings are great. I organize them with other writers and with the publicist at Inanna. I am also a member of Sisters in Crime (Toronto Chapter) and the Crime Writers of Canada and the International Thriller Writers and all of those offer good promotional outlets. The Sisters in Crime meet once a month and they are very supportive of my writing and the Crime Writers of Canada organized events that one can read at. So there is lots going on, you just have to keep an eye out and jump on board as soon as something is announced as spots do fill up quickly!

If you had to pick just one book marketing tool that you’ve used to promote your book, which would you say has been the most effective?

I think that would be my website,

I use my website as a place to gather it all, bring it all together, all the readings, pictures, announcements, awards won, up-coming events, reader feedback, contests, reviews, YouTube links, trailers and anything that has been out there about the book. I use a templated site hosted by and GoDaddy and it’s not too tricky to keep freshly updated.

About The Book

TitleBetween The Cracks She Fell
Author: Lisa de Nikolits
Publisher: Inanna Publications
Publication Date: September 15, 2015
Format: Paperback / PDF
Pages: 350
ISBN: 978-1771332255
Genre: Suspense Thriller

Buy The Book:

Discuss this book in our PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads by clicking HERE

Book Description:

The award-winning author of The Hungry MirrorWest of WawaGlittering Chaos and The Witchdoctor’s Bones delivers an original and riveting new novel about societal betrayal, familial loss and religious jihad. A suspenseful and lyrical read, Between The Cracks She Fell is a powerful-first person narrative about the explosive consequences of betrayal, survival in troubled times and the pervasiveness of religious domination.

When Joss finds herself having to make mortgage payments without help from her depressed, stoner boyfriend who has just moved out, and the company she works for folds leaving her suddenly unemployed, she is forced to sell her house, on which she takes a financial loss. She decides to camp out in a vacant complex of school buildings to give herself time to decide what to do next. It turns out the building is used by a gang of teenagers for wild, drug-fueled parties and Jess soon finds herself both repelled by their charismatic evil leader, as well as sexually attracted to him. She knows he is dangerous even before she finds his girlfriend’s dead and violently abused body in the school library. During this time, she meets and befriends two other people in difficulty: Emma, a narcissistic thief living with her dog in a stolen car and Ashley, a young homosexual who is heartbroken by the fact that he has been expelled from the Jehovah’s Witness church because he is gay. When her former boyfriend reappears as a born again Christian, Joss is immersed in a journal she found that contains the thoughts of a Muslim teenager who becomes increasingly radicalized. Her struggle to understand her former boyfriend and this young man’s spiritual quests prepare her to make some hard decisions about her future. Between the Cracks She Fell is about a woman who falls off the grid and the explosive consequences of betrayal, survival in troubled times, and the pervasiveness of religious domination.

Book Excerpt:


I reached my destination with no great sense of joy but at least I wasn’t crying.

A purple, red and black pentagram marked the path ahead of me and the sea of grass rolled this way and that and my throat closed and my eyes stung but I swallowed the tears.

I tried to pretend I was Gibreel Farishta, a hero bigger than me; that tuneless soloist tumbling out of thin air; what an entrance, yaar.

First you have to die. Ho ji! Ho ji! How to ever smile again, if first you won’t cry?

But there would be no more crying for me. My former life was dead. I needed to escape for a while, hide out and then, once I got my energy back, I would figure out what came next.

Right now all I could say was that I was alive, and that is the point I guess, much like Gibreel, standing, with pigs falling out of his face and no God to help him.

I held my arms aloft and waded through the knotty field, as if paddling through an upward flowing river, pushing forward against the current.

The summer offered shoulder-high fragrant grasses laced with thistles and weeds and despite the misfortunes of past events, I was not blind to the beauty of the tiny lilac flowers or the red roses that grew wild and free.

I could see the buildings in the distance. It had been a while since I had seen them but they sprawled low at the other end of the playing fields, just as I remembered.

I had packed for the task at hand; knife, bottled water, flashlight, pillow. Kind of funny really, how natural this solution felt, like it was some kind of okay. It wasn’t the first time I’d purposefully left the grid; my first solo adventure had taken place when I was eleven. Tired of school, friends, mother, swimming lessons and tuck shop lunches, I hid out in a farmer’s shed, armed with books and apples and bars of chocolate. I stayed for two nights and two days, sleeping in a hairy horse blanket that I shook free of cobwebs and drew close around me, breathing in that rich scent of dry sage, dust, leather, sweat and all the other good things that horses smell of. I returned home when I ran out of food and reading material. Mum was furious but I wasn’t sorry; I’d done what I needed to do and it was the same this time, although there was less choice in a sense, as I had in fact lost my house to the bank and my job to the recession and my boyfriend to a nervous breakdown.

I could think of no other way to heal, to regroup and to find the solo me that I could rely on. I had made a mistake, relying on Shayne but I would get over that. I would get over everything.

Book Trailer:

About The Author

Originally from South Africa, Lisa de Nikolits has been a Canadian citizen since 2003. She has a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and Philosophy and has lived in the U.S.A., Australia and Britain.

Her first novel, The Hungry Mirror, won the 2011 IPPY Awards Gold Medal for Women’s Issues Fiction and was long-listed for a ReLit Award. Her second novel, West of Wawa won the 2012 IPPY Silver Medal Winner for Popular Fiction and was one of Chatelaine’s four Editor’s Picks. West of Wawa is available in bookstores and online.

Her third novel, A Glittering Chaos, launched in Spring 2013 to reader and review acclaim, and is about murder, madness, illicit love and poetry.

Her fourth novel, The Witchdoctor’s Bones was launched Spring 2014 to reader and literary acclaim. The Witchdoctor’s Bones is a thriller about the darkest secrets of African evil; the novel seamlessly weaves witchcraft and ancient folklore into a plot of loss, passion and intrigue and a holiday becomes a test of moral character.

Her fifth novel, Between The Cracks She Fell, will be published in Fall 2015 and has been called “a whirligig-ride into the dark recesses of “what-next? It is compelling and multi-layered penetrating and twisty tale of insurrection.”

“A lyrical and deeply moving examination of emotional pain and faith on a collision course with organized religion.  Lisa de Nikolits highly believable and human characters are outsiders struggling to find meaning, and perhaps hope, in contemporary urban society.  With a deft and confident clarity of style, she explores the complex interplay of faith, crime and social isolation. Highly recommended.” – M. H. Callway, award-winning author of Windigo Fire (Seraphim Editions).

Connect with Lisa:

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