Thanks for stopping by and taking a peek at what's on offer. I really hope you enjoy all the authors and novels I feature, plus the blog tours, cover reveals, give-aways and book blitz's etc. I like to keep things fresh and fun, so you, my fabulous readers, enjoy your visits.
For Alexis and Alex life has been great. They have loving parents, great friends and live a life every teenager dreams. However, they are adopted and Alexis struggles with wanting to know who their real parents are and not wanting to hurt her adopted parents. Then, a stunning guy moves across the street from them. One who has a secret past and seems to know things about Alexis. One who does mysterious things and leads her to other mysterious persons. One who pushes her to discover her extraordinary birth family and the truth between mythology and religion.
Alexis must pick up the broken pieces of her heart and pull herself together because she has a mission: To awaken the sleeping gods. When she is at the point of giving up, wearing her pretend smiles and feels like there is nothing left of herself, her friend becomes her savior. Patryck helps put Alexis back together again and in return Alexis sees him as something more than a friend…
Together with her brother, Alex, her father, Edmund, and a team of angels they make their way to Mount Latmos, to awaken the gods. But obstacles are in their way, one of them being Cole, the traitor, the one who shattered Alexis’ heart.
New friends and family she never thought she would meet will come to aid Alexis.
…And a love will blossom that will redefine the saying, “Love you forever.”
Lexi has fulfilled her destiny and now the gods have awakened, but is that a good thing?
Now, Lexi lives in a world that is on a global collapse. The gods are angry that they have been forsaken and are seeking revenge on humanity. The oceans are in turmoil, tornadoes, earthquakes, hurricanes, volcano eruptions and famine are causing global chaos, and the sun is being held hostage in an astrological phenomenal, never-ending solar eclipse by the avenging Helios. Then, there is the problem of Zeus’ threat. Lexi must choose between giving herself to him or watching the “abominable” angels die by his hand. Not to mention, Hera, Zeus’ wife, is proposing her own jealous-driven proposition to Lexi: stay away from her husband or the angels and everyone dear to her will die. Lexi sees no way out of either predicaments and it puts a strain on her relationship with Cole. Will she lose him either way?
Currently living in Utah with her husband and two children, Kristin is prior military and has pursued Religion, History and Legal Studies before finally settling with a Bachelor degree in Criminal Justice. She is a self-proclaimed workaholic, who also loves hiking, traveling, spoiling her babies and, of course, reading and writing.
He laughs at me like I have said the funniest joke in the world. I keep my face neutral, not wanting to show any emotions while he finally collects himself. “Youareamusing. Aren’t you afraid? Why do you not fear me? Do you know what I have done to Kakabel? What I intend to do to you?”
I shrug my shoulders, wanting to appear as calm as possible. “I won’t be scared if I tell myself there is nothing to fear. You cannot hurt me because I will tell myself not to feel pain. I don’t know what you did to my art professor so I won’t know what you will do to me.” I play him with words because I know he won’t understand.
“Where are your wings?” he demands, angry now because I’m not giving anything away.
“What this?” I nod my chin to the necklace around my neck. He comes forward and yanks it off my neck. “Hey, I like that,” I whine like a spoiled child.
“Malachi,” he calls towards the other room. In a few seconds, Malachi is by his side. He takes Cole’s wings that Cerviel hands him and studies it before laughing. “I thought you would like that.” Malachi throws it on the floor and stomps on it. “Go back to Samson,” Cerviel orders him. Malachi is gone in the blink of an eye, leaving me alone with Cerviel again.
“That’s my necklace.” I pout. “There’s no reason to treat it that way.”
“It will hurt your lover,” he informs me with a malicious smile. “If you will not cooperate, then we will torture him.”
“How?” I challenge him.
“His wings,” he indicates to the necklace lying on the floor, “contains a link to him. They’re still connected even though they’re not attached. If you hurt one, then you hurt the other.”
“You’re insane.” I act like his notions are ridiculous.
“Want to test it out?” he picks it up and places his hands on either end like he’s about to twist it or break it in two.
“No!” I scream, terrified that what he says is true.
Games up. I lost this match.Sugar snaps!
“What are you?” he asks again patiently. He takes a chair and places it in front of me. Then, he sits down, folding his legs and hands as they rest on his leg. He’s acting like this is a normal conversation over tea with a friend.
“Can I have some water, please?” I’m trying to buy some time to get away.
“After you answer my questions,” he answers.
“Are you going to let me go after I do?”
“It depends on if I like your answers.” He smiles sweetly at me. “What are you?”
“A girl who is starting to get pissed off that you keep asking me that, like I’m a freaking alien or something!” I scream it at him. I close my eyes and take a deep breath to calm down when I feel a slap across my face. My eyes dart open and I glare at him angrily. I taste blood on the side of my mouth. He stares at the wound and I see a light bulb go off in his eyes. He grins wickedly at me and then produces a switch blade from his pocket.
“Let’s see how much of a pissed off girl you really can be,” he mocks me and then plunges the knife into my hand, impaling it into the arm of the chair I was gripping. My eyes bulge open in shock and horror and I want to scream, but I tell my nerves not to feel anything and my hand goes dead of feeling. I’m so glad right now that I’m a freak.
He watches my expression change with amusement and then looks lethal again when I don’t scream out. I drum the fingers of my other hand on the arm of the chair. Acting like I’m bored with this act.
“Where are your wings?” Cerviel demands of me.
“I don’t have any wings you freakin’ lunatic. I’m just a girl.” I start laughing because my hand not responding to being impaled is a pretty sure sign that I am not human. I feel psychotic in the moment. I think shock is setting in and I cannot control it. I just continue to laugh at him.
His face breaks out in uncontrolled angry grimace and then he pulls the knife out of my hand and plunges it into my chest. I feel it tear through the arteries of my heart. I’m so shocked he did it that I stop breathing, which ends my laughter.
“Go and find her brother,” I hear him bark at someone before I black out again.
Strong-willed Kelsey Reed must escape tonight or
tomorrow her government will take her kidney and give it to someone else.
In this future forged by survivors of pandemics that
wiped out 80 percent of the world's population, life is valued above all else.
The mentally ill are sterilized, abortions are illegal and those who refuse to
donate an organ when told are sentenced to death.
Determined not to give up her kidney or die, Kelsey
enlists the help of her boyfriend Luke and a dodgy doctor to escape. The trio
must disable the tracking chip in her arm for her to flee undetected. If they
fail, Kelsey will be stripped of everything.
R.J. Crayton grew up in Illinois and
now lives in a Maryland suburb of Washington, DC. She is a fiction writer by
day and a ninja mom by night (What is a ninja mom, you ask? It's the same as a
regular mom, only by adding the word ninja, it explicitly reveals the stealth
and awesomeness required for the job of mom). Before having children, Crayton
was a journalist. She's worked at big publications like the Wichita Eagle and
the Kansas City Star, and little publications like Solid Waste Report and
Education Technology News. Her first novels, Life First and Second Life, were
published in 2013. The third novel in the series will be released in 2014.
As I walk down the hallway with my
father, I stare at the Persian rug beneath my feet, wanting more than anything
to be like it. Yes, a strange desire. But, well placed, as the rug is a fake.
It is good at pretending to be something it is not. Tonight, my fate depends on
The rug is better than me. Most
people would think it is a hand-made Persian rug. It is pristinely woven with a
medallion at center, surrounded by intricate flowers, and red and blue swirls
spaced perfectly apart in a repeating pattern — a little too perfect. That is
the telltale sign the rug is a fake. Machines are flawless. Real loom maidens
who labor for hours by hand make mistakes. There’s a certain irony to it: the
rug shows it’s imperfect by being too perfect.
I keep my head down, face hidden,
in case I have a telltale sign. I stare at the rug, feel it squish softly
beneath my feet and do not speak to my father. That seems easier than facing
No one needs to walk a 23-year-old
to her bedroom, so I know he wants to talk. But I’m afraid if he gets a good
look at me, he’ll realize what I’m planning. Even if I were as good as the rug,
he’s the equivalent of a Persian rug expert. He’s hard to fool. So I stare at
the swirls and watch one sock-clad foot step in front of the other.
The little white tassels appear.
Rug is done. It ends at my room. I lift my gaze to the polished mahogany door.
Centered a little lower than eye level is a nameplate made of baked dough
decorated in pink and yellow flowers. KELSEY, it reads. It has held up well,
considering I made it in fourth grade.
I focus on that nameplate, but from
the corner of my eye I see my father turn toward me. Though I feel his stare, I
don’t return his gaze. Not yet. I can’t.
“Kelsey,” he says, just above a
whisper, but authoritatively. I turn and tilt my head up to meet his eyes. My
father is a half-foot taller than me at 6 feet even. His face always appears
accessible — a hazard of his job, I suppose. He is trying to look accessible
now, in hopes that I will confide in him. He is using his most effective trait
— his penetrating, soulful blue-gray eyes — to his advantage. Those eyes can
either make you open up and pour out your most cherished thoughts or cower with
Tonight, he eyes me sympathetically. “Honey, I
know you’re worried about tomorrow,” he says in the “I really care” tone
perfected in his early career. I nod. It’s true. I am worried, but not for the
reasons he thinks. “You’ll be fine,” he assures me. “This is a very safe procedure.”
I try not to move the muscles in my
face — no twitching or grimaces — nothing to hint I’m being dishonest. I just
nod again. Yes, the procedure is very safe. Incredibly safe, unless you’re in
the five percent who suffer major complications.
His lips are pressed together
tightly and his eyes stoic. Does he know I’m hiding the truth? I want a moment
more to analyze him, to try to decipher all the body language he’s worked so
hard to keep controlled so he presents only the information he wants out. But
at that moment, he pulls me into a hug. I don’t expect it. My father is many
things: strong, brave, courageous, stubborn, idealistic. Touchy-feely, not so
much. Despite the shock of the embrace, I manage to lift my arms and wrap them
around him. I try not to wrinkle his suit jacket too much. A wrinkled suit
jacket won’t look good if a reporter snaps his picture.
“You’re doing the right thing,” he
whispers in my ear.
“I know,” I whisper back. This is
true. I know I am doing the right thing. Only, what I’m going to do isn’t what
he wants me to do.
He releases me, takes a step back
and smiles — a genuine one. As a politician, my father smiles a lot. Most
smiles are for show, because no one wants to see a grim man kissing babies or
shaking hands. The public smile means nothing. Pulling his lips into that
friendly curl is as easy as breathing to my father. Seeing the public smile is
about as endearing as seeing him scratch his forehead. The genuine smile, the
one my mother showed me the hallmarks of, is the one I love. If he blesses you
with it, it means you truly have his heart.
I pray my actions tonight won’t
break that heart. Part of me wants to tell him I’m sorry, so sorry, for what
I’m about to do. To make amends before I leave. The other part of me, the part
that knows I can’t let him find out, not prematurely, not when he can still
stop me, just wants him to leave. I smile back, but this time it’s my public
I wonder if he can tell. If so, he
doesn’t let on. He looks down at the thin black watch wrapped around his wrist.
“It’s eight o’clock. That means nothing else to eat tonight, though you can
have a few sips of water if you’re thirsty.”
I nod, relaxing the muscles in my
face to look calm. I lean back against the hallway wall, trying to look like someone
ready to do what Dad wants.
I grew up in the midwest, in an All-American city
(literally, Peoria is a four-time All-America City award winner; most recently
in 2013). I knew I wanted to write for a career, so I became a journalist and
wrote for the Kansas City Star, as
well as smaller publications like Education
Technology News. I love rollerskating, hate spiders and have a
less-than-healthy cupcake addiction.
Can you tell us
a little about your latest novel/release?
My most recent release is the sequel to Life First, aptly titled Second Life. It’s the story of what happens to Kelsey, the
protagonist of the first book, and Susan, who is Kelsey’s best friend. It’s a
really great follow-up to the story, in that it’s very exciting, but has a bit
more of a romantic bent to it than the first book. The great thing about it, is
it puts all the pieces in place for the third book in the series, while still
being a completely satisfying story on it’s own. In fact, you could pick up Second Life without having read Life First (though, I think you’d be happier
if you’d read them both, in order.)
How long does
it take you to typically write a novel?
I can complete a first draft in about three months,
maybe a little less. But, first drafts are always awful, so I usually spend a
fair amount of time revising and rewriting. If you want to include editing and
rewrites, I’d be looking at a nine- to 12-month process, probably.
Do you have a
playlist that you write to?
I find it so weird when writers say they listen to music while they write. I
have to be 100 percent into the scene, into what’s happening in the book in
order to write, so I could never listen to music while I write. My playlist is
the normal background noise of life, and generally I’m tuning that out while I
write. So, short answer: No, I don't have a playlist.
Do you have any
advice for newbie authors just starting out?
I think the best advice is also a Nike slogan: just do
it. The main part of writing is sitting down and doing it. The next biggest
hurdles is accepting valid criticism and improving. And finally, just read good
books. When you read good books, you begin to see the patterns that emerge to
make them good, and you’ll begin incorporating those types of things in your
own writing. If you can do those three things, you’ll put out good books.
What was the
best book you have read in the last few months and why did you love it?
Tough question, as I’ve read some really great books
recently. In terms of nonfiction, I really loved Malcolm Gladwell’s David and
Goliath. It was really thought-provoking and really well done. I read Harlan
Coben's Six Years, and loved that. I also liked the Silent Wife by ASA Harrison
(and was so sad to learn she'd died shortly after the book was published; it's
one of those books that you read and say, I can't wait until her next book
comes out, but obviously, that's not going to happen now. So, so sad. Great
book, great accolades, and she's passed away and won't be able to hear all the
Out of the following places to get
inspiration, which one would you choose & why:
C. Obviously a magical forest. Reading is a type of
magic, one that transports you wherever you want to go. So, a magical forest is
the perfect place to get inspired.
Are you a
pre-planning plotter or a go with flow writer?
Definitely go with the flow. I like to sit and just
write. Now, I generally have an idea where I want the novel to ultimately end,
but that’s about it. I don’t plan way ahead, but I also like to ponder before
sitting down to write. Often times, during various points in the day, I’ll
think about what I want to happen in the book, and then when I do sit down to
write, I’ve got something in mind for that next scene or two. I usually don’t
sit and actively plot the entire book. If I have an idea about something I want
to happen much later in the book, I’ll drop a note to myself at the top of the
file (so I don’t forget; because I will forget if I don’t write it down).
Are you working
on anything new right now, if so, can you share the details with us?
Absolutely. I am finishing the third book in the Life
First series. I’m about 50,000 words in. I just decided I want to end the book
slightly differently than I’d planned to. The good news is that I’m probably going
to take the rest of December and deal with personal stuff (holiday letter must
be written; gifts must be purchased), and will jump back into the writing fray
in January. I think I’ll have time to work out in my mind how the changes I
thought up will impact those last few chapters. I like it when things percolate
in the brain a bit before I write them.
Which method of
writing do you prefer for your first draft?
a.Handwrite the first draft
d.The walls in your office!
I love answer D. It’s not true, but I love it so much,
I’m going with it. For those who care, I do a lot of my writing on a laptop.
I’ll often edit the doc (for minor revisions) from my phone while I’m waiting
for my kids to finish a class or afterschool activity.
Which would you
prefer if your novel was selected by a TV/Film Company:- A TV Series or a Movie
Definitely a movie. I’ve read some of Charlaine
Harris’ Sookie Stackhouse novels and seen some of the episodes of True Blood. I
also watched the Lying Game [now cancelled :( ] on TV and loved it so much that
I thought I’d pick up the book it was based on. And from seeing the drastic
changes between what the books did and the tv shows did, I know I’d prefer a
film. TV shows based on books seem to be just that: based on. The writers are
writers and they want to be inspired by your characters, not necessarily follow
the book. The movie adaptations--at least with popular books--tend to be more
true to the happenings of the novel.
In these hectic
times and endless multi-tasking, how do you make time to write?
I think that’s one of the things I struggle with. When
you’re expected to blog and tweet and Facebook and pin, it’s hard to find time
to write, too. I think on the days that I’m committed to writing my novels, I
just do less in the social media world. You have to carve that time out,
otherwise it won’t happen.
What’s the one
thing – ok two things - you can’t live without?
It’s funny because I know with certainty right now
that it’s the Internet. A friend of mine posted on Facebook that her kids asked
her, "Would you rather have your foot cut off or go the rest of your life
without the Internet." And when she said it, I thought, well, prosthetics
are pretty good these days. I mean, if push came to shove, and someone was
holding a blade near my foot, I would probably rethink my prospects, as I
really don’t want to lose any limbs. But the Internet is a really big part of
my life nowadays. It would be a hard thing to go without. Probably food and drink should have been
number one on the list, right? Oh, well,
I'll get 7 days of the 'net before I die of dehydration, right?
personal take on E-Books, and do you prefer reading them over a traditional
Personally, I love ebooks. I think they’re a fabulous
way for readers to get information and pay less than they’d have to pay for that
hard tree-killing copy. That said, I think ebooks are best for adults and maybe
teens. I look at my kids and I think there’s something wonderful about the
tactile sensation that comes with holding a book and turning it’s pages. I
think young kids really need that, and wouldn’t advocate e-readers for small
children. In terms of my own reading, I probably do about half and half. It’s
convenient to read on a device (usually my phone) because I have it with me all
the time. But, when your battery is low, it’s great to crack open something
that doesn’t require a charge (if my battery is low, and I’m out waiting, I
have to remind myself I can’t open up a book on an app and read it because it’s
more important that the 7 percent battery left be around in case I need to make an emergency phone call). Also, with paper books (especially hard
backs), you can slam them down on your desk to quiet a room/get people's
attention. I wouldn't try that with an e-reader on an ipad. You'd heare sounds
of sizzling, cracking and dying machinery. Books are also good for hurling at
people during arguments (not that I know from first-hand experience; I've just
heard). Again, wouldn't recommend hurling e-readers at anyone or anything.
That's a first and last time experience for a functioning device.
Are there any
little secrets that you’d like to share?
I’m a cupcake addict. OK. Maybe that’s not a secret.
Then, no, I don’t think there are any secrets I’d like to share. Whenever I
share secrets, the people whose secrets they were get angry.
If your house
was about to be obliterated, as in The Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy, what
would be the one thing you would have to save and why?
Well, presuming all the living things have already
fled the house (if my kids are in the house, obviously I’m getting them), I’d
get the hard drives. With everything being digital, that’s where all the photos