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“Icy Passage” by: Ann Gimpel

Posted in Book Blog Tour, Book Promotion, paranormal, romance, thriller, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on March 30, 2016 by mrsmack97

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Hey Readers. Help me welcome author, Ann Gimpel to Ready, Set, Blog. (Ann doesn’t know it but I’m a bit of a fangirl) Anyway, get ready to: ‘Tumble into the icy danger of Antarctica with a blazing hot romance. Mittens and fan required.’

And will you just look at the book cover! Icy? I say, NOT! Ann has been very kind to include an excerpt as part of this blog stop. I’m sure once you start reading, you’ll decide to ONE-CLICK IT!

Cherrie

 

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Icy Passage

Ann Gimpel

 

Dream Shadow Press

110K words

Genre: Supernatural thriller romance

 

Book Description:

Fresh out of residency, Dr. Kayna Quan opts for a tour in Antarctica. Money is short, so she hires on as medical officer aboard a Russian research vessel headed for McMurdo Station. Primed for almost anything, she plays her paranormal ability close to the vest.

Stationed on remote South Georgia Island for two years, Brynn McMichaels is eager for a change. When cultures of the single-celled organism, archaea, overgrow their bins in his lab and begin shifting into another form, he worries he’s losing his mind and talks with scientists at McMurdo, but they have problems of their own—bad ones. Brynn agrees to help. The weather’s too uncertain to send a plane, so he hitches a ride aboard Kayna’s ship and brings his mutant culture colonies along.

Attraction sparks, urgent, hot and powerful, between Brynn and Kayna, but her disclosure about her magic is a tough nut to crack. It doesn’t help that her dead father is stalking her. Lethal cultures, bizarre illness, and McMurdo’s refusal to let them land force Brynn and Kayna into an uneasy alliance. Will their fragile bond be enough to thwart the powers trying to destroy Earth, and them along with it?

 

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Kobo    ARe    Google Play

 

Excerpt from Icy Passage:

Chapter One

 

Micah Greenwich sucked air as he pushed up from his squat, a weight bar balanced across his shoulders. He did one more squat before a wave of dizziness threatened to bring him to his knees. Gasping, he shucked the bar onto pins protruding from the back of the squat rack and grabbed one of the metal stanchions for support. A headache pounded behind one eye, and he felt nauseous.

“What the fuck is wrong with me?” he muttered, still clinging to the metal cage shoved in a back corner of the gym at McMurdo Station, Antarctica. No one was in the gym. Not at this hour. Granted, the perpetual night for part of the year, followed by perpetual day, yielded some odd circadian rhythms, but Micah rarely had competition for any of the gym machines or weight equipment late at night.

He glanced at the weight plates balanced on the ends of the forty-five pound bar, thinking perhaps he’d misjudged and put too much weight on it, but that wasn’t the issue. He shrugged. Maybe he was getting sick. Something was going around. So far, he’d been lucky during his brief stint at the southern end of the Earth and had avoided the colds and flus McMurdo residents passed among themselves like candy.

He wiped sweat from his face with a ratty towel and decided to call it a night—at least for working out. He still needed to stop by his lab. Because he was the newest and greenest microbiologist, he’d been assigned archaea, the most ancient single-celled life form on the planet. His cultures had taken a decidedly odd turn, though, a couple of weeks back—growing like mad and not looking like any prokaryote he’d ever seen. While he might have started with archaea, what was in his bins didn’t look much like them anymore.

Another wave of nausea battered him, and he folded his arms around his midsection, wondering if he was going to vomit. Saliva flooded his mouth, but he choked it back. Even though he didn’t feel like doing anything beyond finding his bed, he left the gym and made his way three buildings over to his lab. McMurdo was a series of prefab buildings with interconnecting doors and insulated tunnel-walkways, so you didn’t have to go outside into the weather. Antarctica never got particularly warm, and nights were always bitter.

He glanced out a window at an inky sky shot with stars, and a reluctant smile split his face. It might be minus something outside, but it was beautiful too. He’d always loved wild, remote places, and Antarctica was about as wild and remote as it got—shy of signing up to be an astronaut, which was a long-standing dream of his.

Micah frowned, wondering if the astronaut gig was even possible. The United States had cut their funding for the space program rather dramatically. Besides, he needed more in the way of credentials to even be considered for something like that. With another swipe at his still sweaty face—the more he thought about it, the surer he was he was coming down with the flu—he pushed open the door to his lab and froze, not believing his eyes.

“Britta?” he called. “Marguerite!”

The women didn’t answer. They sprawled face down on the floor in front of his main workbench, clearly passed out. Wondering if they’d gotten into the high-grade, ethyl alcohol he used to preserve things, he called their names again, louder this time. The longer he looked at them, the weirder he felt. They were too still. Sudden fear gripped him, making the nausea worse.

“Jesus fucking Christ. Why me?” he muttered, and raced to the women. He bent, grabbed Britta’s shoulder, and shook her. When she didn’t respond, he flipped her over and stared at her cherry red face.

Fighting a deeply sinking feeling, he turned Marguerite over. She looked just like her friend and roommate. Micah squatted next to them and laid his fingers across their necks, searching for a pulse.

Nothing.

He placed his ear over their hearts, willing there to be something, anything, before he started CPR. Still nothing. He ground his teeth together, unnerved. How could there possibly be two dead women in his lab?

Even though he was pretty sure it wouldn’t do any good, he tilted Marguerite’s head back and breathed into her mouth before doing chest compressions. When he looked over at Britta, he understood he had to have help and lurched to his feet. Snapping up the wall phone, he punched in the after hours code for the clinic. As soon as one of the nurses answered, he screeched, “Send help now. Third micro lab.”

His headache worsened. So did his twisting, roiling guts, but he went back to the women. He didn’t need to be a doctor to recognize death. Despite the futility, he alternated CPR from one to the next. Five long minutes passed—but they felt like five years—before the door burst open.

“Christ!” One of the docs—Stewart maybe, Micah was too rattled to take a good look—pulled him off Marguerite. A tall, broad-shouldered woman Micah didn’t recognize examined Britta.

“Looks like carbon monoxide poisoning to me,” the female medic said flatly. “This one’s well past CPR.”

Dr. Stewart rocked back on his heels. “Yeah, her too.” He trained his blue eyes on Micah. “What happened?”

Micah shook his head. “Damned if I know. I just got here. I had dinner in the mess hall, worked out in the gym, and then I swung by here to check on my cultures.”

The woman narrowed her eyes and half-crawled to where Micah sat on the floor. She folded her fingers over his wrist and took him in with practiced hazel eyes. Her reddish hair was short, almost in a butch cut. She pressed her lips into a harsh line, frowning.

“I’m Ariana,” she said, letting go of his wrist. “One of the nurse practitioners. How have you been feeling?”

“Bad,” he admitted. “Think I finally succumbed to the community disease everyone else has.”

Dr. Stewart joined them and squatted next to Micah. He ran a hand down the side of Micah’s neck and listened to his chest with a stethoscope before exchanging a pointed glance with Ariana. “Where’s the CO meter in here?” he asked.

Micah gestured behind him. “On that wall.” He twisted to look at it, but the indicator light was green—safe. Maybe it was defective. His scientifically trained mind arranged informational bits into an unpleasant pattern. “The women,” he said. “If I’d been firing on all cylinders, I’d have figured it out as soon as I looked at the color of their faces. They died from carbon monoxide poisoning, didn’t they?”

“Probably.” Dr. Stewart said cautiously. “But it’s conjecture at this point.”

“That cherry red color is a dead giveaway,” Ariana said with conviction. “Nothing else will do that.”

“We’ll wait for an autopsy before we make statements like that.” The doctor eyed his colleague coolly.

“Yes, Doctor. Sir. King of all things medical.” She set her lips in a thin line, clearly biting back further sarcasm. “Meantime,” she ground out, “I’m pretty sure he—” she jabbed a finger at Micah “—has whatever killed these two.” She stood and punched numbers into the wall phone. “I’m calling security.”

Dr. Stewart sifted his hands through his untidy, blond hair. “Tell them to alert maintenance. Until we figure out what killed these two, we’ve got to get out of here. Now.”

Micah straightened. “Wait a minute,” he sputtered. “The meter says it’s safe. For all we know, Britta and Marguerite got poisoned elsewhere and just happened to be in here cleaning when they collapsed.”

Dr. Stewart got to his feet and hauled Micah upright. “For tonight, we’ll put you in the infirmary and run tests to check if your hemoglobin’s been compromised. I’ve got to alert the boss and talk with base security. We’ll to get to the bottom of this.”

“But my lab—”

Dr. Stewart made a chopping motion with one hand, and the rest of Micah’s protest died unspoken.

Ariana hung up the phone and nodded at Dr. Stewart. “You take care of the boss. I’ll deal with security and maintenance. Need to get the gas sniffer in here to make sure there’s not a leak.”

Micah tried to focus, but the room spun crazily. He really was wiped out. Much more tired than a thirty-year-old man had a right to feel.

“Can you walk?” Dr. Stewart nudged him.

Micah focused bleary eyes on the physician. “Yeah. I think so.”

“How are you feeling?” Ariana asked the doctor.

He shrugged. “Normal. But it takes time for exposure to take a toll. Micah probably lives in this lab, except when he’s asleep.”

“Yeah, but,” Micah pointed out, “those women didn’t. They clean all the science labs. Maybe one of the other ones is the problem.”

The doctor folded an arm around Micah’s waist supporting him, and led him out of the lab. “I’m on it. By the time you wake up, we’ll know more.”

Micah staggered through the door, flanked by Dr. Stewart and Ariana. “What are you going to do about the women?” he asked.

“You were there when I alerted base security. They’ll take care of them,” Ariana assured him. “For tonight, focus on getting well.”

* * * *

It hadn’t been just that night, though. Micah spent the next three days in the infirmary sucking bottled oxygen. When that didn’t clear his red blood cells fast enough, the doctors ordered chelation treatments. In the meantime, he had a chance to think, and he didn’t care for what he came up with. Besides, it was so fantastic, no one would believe him.

Maintenance had given his lab, and the other three microbiology studios, a clean bill of health, which meant he could go back to work tomorrow. Even more disturbing, the entirety of the science wing where the dead women cleaned showed zip in the way of evidence of a gas leak. In the interest of thoroughness, maintenance had checked the female dorms too, and found exactly nothing. Autopsy was conclusive regarding cause of death, but no one could figure out how the women had been exposed to a big enough dose of carbon monoxide to kill them.

The same was true for him—major exposure to something pigging up his hemoglobin, but without an identifiable source. Another few hours without medical intervention and he’d have been just as dead as Britta and Marguerite.

Armed with that knowledge—and a phalanx of unanswered questions—Micah spent his downtime in the infirmary mapping out a series of tests to run on his strange archaea colonies. He had suspicions, but needed facts before he presented them to Jack DeVoe, the man in charge of McMurdo operations. If he went to him now, Jack, who had a Ph.D. in biochemistry, would laugh him right out of his office. And there would go Micah’s hopes of earning his chops, so he could go on to something more prestigious than working at McMurdo Station.

 

 

 

About the Author:

 

Ann Gimpel is a national bestselling author. A lifelong aficionado of the unusual, she began writing speculative fiction a few years ago. Since then her short fiction has appeared in a number of webzines and anthologies. Her longer books run the gamut from urban fantasy to paranormal romance. Once upon a time, she nurtured clients, now she nurtures dark, gritty fantasy stories that push hard against reality. When she’s not writing, she’s in the backcountry getting down and dirty with her camera. She’s published over 30 books to date, with several more planned for 2016 and beyond. A husband, grown children, grandchildren and wolf hybrids round out her family.

 

Find Ann At:

 

www.anngimpel.com

 

http://anngimpel.blogspot.com

 

http://www.amazon.com/author/anngimpel

 

http://www.facebook.com/anngimpel.author

 

@AnnGimpel (for Twitter)

 

 


 

 

 

 

Perfect Sense by: Amanda Cowen

Posted in Book Blog Tour, Book Promotion, ebook with tags , , , , , , on March 27, 2016 by mrsmack97

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Welcome to Ready, Set,Blog. It is my absolute pleasure to spotlight Amanda Cowen’s,  New Adult Contemporary Romance, Perfect Sense. I don’t know about you but the cover alone makes me want to one click! Then I read the blurb. Sold.

 

Perfect Sense

He’s gorgeous.

He’s reckless.

And he’s every woman’s dirty fantasy in the state of California.., except one… Quinn Ashby.

Recent graduate of Penn and top of her class, Quinn is whip smart, ambitious and interning as the new marketing coordinator for the Bexley Bruisers American Hockey League team. The last thing she needs is to waste her time on guys…especially one as lethal to her focus as Cash Brooks.

But once the bad boy hockey star tempts her into his world, threatening her professional future, she’s forced to decide whether to let him into her heart…or to leave him behind forever.

Meet The Author – Amanda Cowen
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Amanda Cowen can be found eating cupcakes, singing off-key, or watching

a good RomCom when she isn’t trapped on her computer writing stories.

She is an “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” fanatic, a hater of roller-

coasters and a country music junkie. She lives in Thunder Bay, ON where

the summers are short and the winters are long.

Amanda would love to hear from her readers. Contact her via her website,

www. amandacowen.com, become a fan on Facebook, follow her on

Instagram @authoramandacown, or follow her on Goodreads.

http://www.amandacowen.com

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/Amanda-Cowen-600953916598286/?ref=hl

Instagram – @authoramandacowen

Goodreads – Amanda Cowen

The Birth Of The Binge Reader?

Posted in Author with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 18, 2014 by mrsmack97

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Everyone and no one likes a cliffhanger. And nowadays, you don’t have to put up with them. Simply put off watching your favorite show until the next one is on. This is becoming reality for countless people who save up a season worth of shows to binge watch in a weekend or two.
Let’s face it, the web has been competing with the entertainment industry for years now. Television has taken a back seat to youtube, facebook and instagram. No longer do we check the time, prepare the popcorn and sit down as a family to catch the latest episode of our favorite show. Gone are the days of squirming in our seats waiting for the next commercial to go pee.
And not to age myself, but back in the day, those cliffhangers had people talking for months on end. Speculating, guessing, chomping at the bit for any information on the fate of their favorite characters. Who shot JR? Yeah, I remember it. And what do I remember most? The amazing ratings the season premiere received. Everyone, fan of Dallas or not, tuned in to find out who committed the dastardly deed.
Not to say the season cliffhanger doesn’t work…it does but people are so impatient these days, we no longer are willing to wait, sometimes saving a season worth of shows only to watch as it coincides with the season premier. Confusing? You betcha.
Which brings me to the book series. According to some readers, they wait to start a series until there are two or more books out. I myself have been one of those ravenous readers, tearing through a book only to open the next one as soon as the first one is closed. But, seriously? If you find an appealing book, do you find yourself annoyed by the fact that the second book is not out yet? Would it determine whether or not you buy the first one? And if you do, how long is too long to wait for the next? As an author with multiple series in the works—I’d really love to know.

Join Over One Thousand Readers Who Entered My Tour

Posted in Author, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 6, 2014 by mrsmack97

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There’s still plenty of time to try to win your FREE Kindle. And discover new friends and interesting blogs along the way. Today’s stop include an interview with yours truly at Butterfly-o-Meter Books –
http://butterfly-o-meter.com/

Also, I have a spotlight post at Larissa and Friends’ Bookish Life – http://www.larissaslife.com

You can sign up at either stop along the way. Use facebook or twitter to enter. Good Luck and as always, I thank you for your support. ((HUGS))

Cherrie
3D A Late Summer Bloom HB2

ON SALE NOW

Did you enter the tour? Fabulous Prizes!

Posted in Author, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 4, 2014 by mrsmack97

Good Morning friends, fans, readers and authors.

Have you joined my digital book tour yet? Stop by for your chance to win a FREE Kindle or Amazon gift card of equal value. Plus you also get a chance to win a FREE copy of my newest paranormal romance, A Late Summer Bloom, the first in my Witches Of The Bayou Series.

Today I had the pleasure of chatting with Pembroke Sinclair. She had some cute and interesting questions. Swing by and see how I answered at, http://www.pembrokesinclair.blogspot.com

Also, I am excited to report my first review for A Late Summer Bloom has been posted. It’s a “5 Fang” from paranormal authors that rock! Check out what they had to say at Paranormal romance and authors that rock, http://www.pratr.wordpress.com

3D A Late Summer Bloom HB2

And the fun continues for the next 14 days with more interesting tidbits, character interviews, excerpts and fun. Thank you for all your amazing support. ((HUGS))

Cherrie Mack, WHERE LOVE BEGINS xoxo

Get your FREE Kindle….Join the tour

Posted in Author, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 1, 2014 by mrsmack97

A_Late_Summer_Bloom_Banner_851_x_315Digital book tour starts TODAY! Sign up to win a FREE Kindle or Amazon gift card of equal value. Also, you’ll have a chance to win a free copy of A Late Summer Bloom, the first in the Witches Of The Bayou series.
Follow the link below, http://www.nightowlreviews.com/v5/Blog/Articles/A-Late-Summer-Bloom-by-Cherrie-Mack

Thank you always for your amazing support

Witches Of The Bayou book series – An idea is born…

Posted in Author with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 26, 2014 by mrsmack97

Readers often ask me where my book ideas come from. Most of my stories come out of nowhere, triggered by a song, a memory or a dream (daydreams included) However, A Late Summer Bloom, the first in my Witches Of The Bayou series was born on a family vacation. New Orleans was the place–and any trip to Louisiana wouldn’t be complete without exploring the outskirts of such a fine place. An out-of-the-way stop in Baton Rogue was the ticket. It was here, at Oak Alley Plantation, that the story of Julien Beaumont and Giselle Jareau was born. Walking along the alley of oaks at twilight was an experience I’ll never forget. It was just me-all alone. My husband and kids were at the lovely cottage on the grounds when I decided to set off on my walk. This is a purchased picture of Oak Alley Plantation.

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As I walked amongst these amazing trees, my imagination went to work. And in the time it took me to meander amongst nature, my story had been written. Well, the basics anyway. And I couldn’t help but feel I had been there before. Some other time, long ago. Could that be possible? So here’s the strange thing. When my family decided to stretch out and get comfortable in the cottage, I immediately grabbed my camera and went for my adventure. (Hours in a car with two kids will make you crave to be outside with the bugs) I started to snap some pictures of the grounds, the house, the trees and I walked on the side of the mansion where I took the most fabulous picture at the strangest angle. I caught the sidelight as it lit up and the old wooden window frame. I thought I was being quite artistic. After some time outside alone, the loud sounds of the bugs seemed to chase me back to the cottage. It was just as well, nature called and I hade to use the bathroom. I rushed inside asking where I could find the bathroom. I passed the kids, passed the husband and went to use the facilities. Inside, there was a small sitting area with a mirror and a few wall hangings. It was then I saw it. The picture I took minutes before hung in a frame on the wall in my cottage bathroom. The EXACT picture. The angle was the same. The little light was the same. The time of day was the same. They were the same! I ran to show my husband who explained it away as a coincidence. But I’m not so sure. Magic? Something more? I choose to believe it is. After all, who couldn’t use a little magic in their lives? I know I can.

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