Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Happy Release Day- Grudging by Michelle Hauck

Wishing my critique partner, Michelle Hauck a Happy Release Day! I loved GRUDGING from the very first page, but I'm biased. I've loved every book I've ever read by Michelle. She has the ability to transport me into a magical world of her creation. And I never want to leave. Congrats, Michelle!

Author: Michelle Hauck
Pub. Date: November 17, 2015
Publisher: Harper Voyager Impulse
Format: eBook
Find it: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Goodreads

A world of chivalry and witchcraft…and the invaders who would destroy everything.

The North has invaded, bringing a cruel religion and no mercy. The ciudades-estados who have stood in their way have been razed to nothing, and now the horde is before the gates of Colina Hermosa…demanding blood.

On a mission of desperation, a small group escapes the besieged city in search of the one thing that might stem the tide of Northerners: the witches of the southern swamps.

The Women of the Song.

But when tragedy strikes their negotiations, all that is left is a single untried knight and a witch who has never given voice to her power.  And time is running out.

A lyrical tale of honor and magic, Grudging is the opening salvo in the Book of Saints trilogy.


Shortly after the combat, Ramiro made his excuses to the men at the wall and left, returning to the citadel and taking the stairs to the roof. Some alcalde’s wife from the past had turned this spot into an outdoor garden and dining room, making it a favorite retreat for many. A peaceful place when he felt anything but.
Other people’s blood spotted his white shirt. Had things gone differently, it could easily have been his own. He needed a bath and a rest, but his mind hummed from the conflict, leaving him unable to stop pacing. Cold chills claimed his limbs. His stomach was sourer than when alcohol had filled it. With no clear single-combat victory, he hadn’t earned his beard. The night reeked of disappointment.
How long? How long could they keep the Northerners out?
Stars spotted the night sky here, where the citadel met the top of the world. Or so it had always seemed to him as a child. Life was no longer so certain now that he was older.
He drew in the cool scent of creeping jasmine, carefully tended and watered by hand in pots across the rooftop. Colina Hermosa spread before him, a humbling sight. The city stretched away from the citadel on all sides, a jewel shining with lights. It spread down the hill, becoming wider and grander as it sprawled, with imposing avenues and white-clad stucco buildings whose thick walls and small windows kept out the noonday heat. There was squalor and dirt as well, fits of temper, rudeness, and often impatience. But the darkness hid all that, washing the city of its faults and giving it a fresh life until it tumbled like the sea against the immovable stone walls that now held out the Northerners.
His heart swelled with love. Something worth defending. Home.
Outside the high, white walls, well beyond arrow shot, was a sight not so welcoming. There, jammed between the city and a deep, old quarry used to build the city walls, campfires burned. A red swarm of rage and death, brimstone and smoke, offering a grim contrast with the peaceful firmament. Not by the hundreds did they burn, but by the thousands, mirroring the stars in the sky. How many peasants’ houses did they demolish to feed so much hungry fire? They must be down to burning cacti. How they kept it up night after night, he couldn’t begin to comprehend. Salvador had talked on about supply trains and quartermasters, but Ramiro had let his imagination dwell on his first ride instead. An indulgence he regretted now.
If only each fire meant a single enemy, but that was wishful thinking. Each fire contained tens of men. Tens and thousands. And behind them, the siege machines waited their turn. A lethal combination for Colina Hermosa.
He touched the spot above his spleen, and whispered, “Santiago, don’t let me give in to despair.”

About Michelle: 
Michelle Hauck lives in the bustling metropolis of northern Indiana with her hubby and two teenagers. Two papillons help balance out the teenage drama. Besides working with special needs children by day, she writes all sorts of fantasy, giving her imagination free range. A book worm, she passes up the darker vices in favor of chocolate and looks for any excuse to reward herself. Bio finished? Time for a sweet snack.

She is a co-host of the yearly contests Query Kombat and Nightmare on Query Street, and Sun versus Snow.

Her epic fantasy, Kindar's Cure, is published by Divertir Publishing. Her short story, Frost and Fog, is published by The Elephant's Bookshelf Press in their anthology, Summer's Double Edge. She's repped by Sarah Negovetich of Corvisiero Literary.

Friday, October 30, 2015



Forever authors Lauren Dane, Katie MacAlister, Rebecca Zanetti, and I have joined forces to put the spooky in Halloween. This collaborative short story will give you the shivers in all the right places!

Below are the blogs participating and which author will appear on each (blogs will have their post up by 10 AM EST). Be sure to read the story in order or you'll be really confused.

There will also be a fun giveaway featuring books from all the authors. Here is the rafflecopter link.

Before you go, don't forget to enter my Goodreads giveaway of DARK EMBRACE. I'm giving away (1) autographed paperback copy to a lucky winner. This giveaway is international, 'cause I didn't want to leave anyone out.

It ends next week, so don't wait too long to enter. You may be the lucky winner.


Tuesday, July 14, 2015


I'm happy to announce that DARK EMBRACE released today. I'm so excited to share this story with you all.

DARK EMBRACE (Dark Paradise, #4)
July 14, 2015
"A vivid and entertaining storyteller, Sandro is an exciting new writer to watch."
-J. A. Redmerski, New York Times
bestselling author

Reader favorite Angie Sandro returns to the South with a bewitching paranormal New Adult romance perfect for fans of Jennifer Armentrout's Wicked and Cora Carmack's Inspire . . .

Rescued from the brink of death by her cousin Mala, Dena Acker returns to the land of the living with a terrifying gift. Still connected to the darkness that almost claimed her, she can tell when someone's about to die--but there's nothing she can do to save them. Desperate to rid herself of this cursed ability, Dena has only one chance at peace . . . and two very different men willing to rescue her.

For centuries, Ashmael has seen more souls than he can count but he's never been drawn to anyone the way he is to fragile, beautiful Dena. She fills the dark void of his days with light, and he would sacrifice anything - even his immortality - to cross over to her world and ease her suffering. But he can't afford to be discovered by police detective Michael Anders, who is investigating the deaths that surround Dena. While Michael fights his growing attraction to her, the evidence still points to Dena as the killer. Both men have the ability to save Dena from her horrible fate, but which one can she trust with her darkest secrets?

Monday, July 13, 2015


If you missed the first four posts about My Crazy Road Trip, click on the link HERE to get caught up.

When we last left off, Mom and I had just escaped the Salt Flat People. After a good night of rest (three hours) we headed across the street to this lovely Flying J gas station.

After we gased up for our trip and grabbed snacks, we're ready to hit the road again. Only Mom's jeep wouldn't start. The battery was DEAD. 

And Mom's jumper cables were at the bottom of a pile of boxes in the back of her jeep.

It's at times like these when you realize how nice people can be. We got a lot of help. One man told us it was the alternator. He offered to call a tow truck for us. Another man thought the battery cables had loosened during the drive. Turned out, he was right. Only we didn't know it at the time. He tightened the cable for us. Unfortunately, the battery still died right afterwards, leading us to believe it really was the alternator. 

Mom called USAA road service, and they dispatched a tow truck. Meanwhile, we left the jeep connected to the Uhaul and charged it up while we waited. 

By the time the tow truck driver arrived an hour later, the battery was already fully charged. YAY!

 He checked it over for us. Everything was okay! He then gave us the go ahead. Thank goodness this didn't happen in the middle of the desert.

This side bar stole most of the morning. We didn't make it to Las Vegas as planned. Shoot, we didn't even try. We got really close and found a hotel at 4 p.m. We woke up at 1 a.m. and hit the road by 3 a.m. Las Vegas came and went at six a.m. The sun was just coming up, so the town was still lit up. Traffic was minimal. We crossed the Valley of Fire before it got hot enough to burn.

I discovered this gem at a little gas station in the Mojave National Preserve. It's actually animated, but my video wouldn't load. I'll post it on my Facebook page, if you want to watch it. I got a snort laugh from it (totally audible on the video, too.)


Next stop, San Diego, where I lost my mom on I-15. I pulled off onto the I-215, but I didn't notice she wasn't behind me. We ended up making the last hour of the drive solo. But we made it.
I got to spend the 4th of July with my mom (who refused to be in a picture posted online) and my sister at the ocean. It was a glorious.
Vinnie and Angie at the beach.
What I learned from this trip is that I'm stronger than I thought. If I had to, I know I could travel across the country alone. No problem. Having the trip veer off from the plan made this an adventure I'll never forget.
Tomorrow begins a new adventure when DARK EMBRACE (Dark Paradise, #4) releases. It's still available for pre-order. :)


Want to watch the mining video. Click here for my Facebook page.

Sunday, July 12, 2015


If you missed the first three posts about My Crazy Road Trip, click on the link HERE to get caught up.

I took this picture at a rest stop in Utah. We'd been driving through the most beautiful country. This is just a taste of the sights we saw in the mountains outside of Salt Lake City.

This little guy let me walk right up to him.

Little did I know that this rest stop was the last moment of peace we'd have for a long time.

Once we hit the mountains outside of Salt Lake City, it felt like we were driving in a speed race. We had to be going over 80 miles an hour just to keep up with the other drivers, who were going much faster. I've never been so terrified and...thrilled, to be honest. 

Whipping around those corners, speeding up to pass slower drivers. OMG, it was amazing.  I've never gone so fast before. When we came out of the mountains, and I saw the lights of Salt Lake City on the horizon, fireworks shot into the sky (literally). It was 4th of July weekend, but it felt like they were just for me. I've never been so happy.

Then I follow Mom into the city. By the time we hit the freeway, it was fully dark. I could barely see Mom's jeep because of drivers pulling in front of me. Some guy in a white truck almost ran me off the road. Traffic moved fast.

Mom got confused by the signs and ended up turning onto Hwy 80 for Reno. Next thing you know, we're lost. Trapped on a two-lane freeway with no way to pull off. We end up passing the Bonneville Salt Flats (which stink). It was close to midnight. I was exhausted and upset that we'd ended up an hour off course.

Mom finally noticed my frantic signaling and pulled off at a small gas station. The lights were off inside. Nobody else was around, but us.

Mom climbed out of the jeep and started to walk toward me. From the corner of my eye, I saw a flash of red. A pick up truck pulled in and parked next to us. A old guy in tattered overalls got out of the truck. He had shoulder length hair and a beard. No shirt (of course), because we'd just entered bizarro land. 

More pick up trucks pulled in and parked. It must've been a family caravanning, unless we stumbled across the gas station where the Salt Flat People held their parties. I say that 'cause the next thing I know, I'm watching a bunch of their kids dancing on top of the pick up trucks. It was the oddest thing I've EVER seen outside of a movie like Deliverance or The Hills Have Eyes. I wish I'd thought to take a video, but I didn't want to draw their attention.

Mom and I pulled out of the gas station and parked in a nearby field. We still needed to figure out where we were. And how to get back to Salt Lake City without being cannibalized by the Salt Flat People. 

So, the trip is already half over. What else can go wrong? I actually thought this as I laid down to sleep in a beautiful room at the Comfort Inn a few miles back the way we came, in Tooele, Utah (home to some of the nicest people on earth).

Foolish mortal.

Scroll down to enjoy a teaser DARK EMBRACE (Dark Paradise, #4). It releases Tuesday, July 14th, and is available for pre-order. :)

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