Friday, November 29, 2013


My Review:

Christine Rains has created an unusual collection of short stories about paranormal beings living on the 13th Floor on an apartment building that is only accessible to them. The City of Carmine is under attack by evil and their lives become intertwined as they deal with issues unique to each and yet part of the whole. 

Stefanie is a werewolf, an alpha who is being hunted by the pack she should be leading. Then there is Marc, a demon who has retired from doing the Master's bidding, and Meira, a Harpy under the thumb of Zeus who falls in love with a human, a true hero that Zeus wants in his army. And that is just three of the unique characters that fill these stories of love and sacrifice in Christine Rains, The 13th Floor: The Complete Collection.

I thoroughly enjoyed the time I spent learning about the residents of the 13th Floor. Her stories are about a group of paranormal beings in need of anonymity but extremely secure in the human world. My favorite resident was Marc the retired demon who saw himself as the landlord and protector, but I loved all the characters and their individual journeys. Each character has different obstacles to overcome in a quest for redemption and love that most never saw coming.

I happily recommend this collection to all readers of romance and the paranormal, and to all readers looking for something new – a genre they have not tried before. This is a great place to start. It's a wonderful escape, with a beautifully constructed world and well-developed characters, written with skill and with just the right amount of romance. 

I truly enjoyed Christine's 13th Floor and since there is the added bonus called The Shadow, can we take that as an indication that more great stories are on the way with new characters and new story lines for the unusual residents of the 13th Floor? This reader hopes so!
***** ***** *****

The Cephalopod Coffeehouse

Hosted by the Armchair Squid

 The idea is simple: on the last Friday of each month, post about the best book you've finished over the past month while visiting other bloggers doing the same.  In this way, we'll all have the opportunity to share our thoughts with other enthusiastic readers.  Please join us HERE!

Friday, November 15, 2013


Andrew McNaughton
The golden moments in the stream of life rush past us and we see nothing but sand; 
the angels come to visit us, 
and we only know them when they are gone. 
 ~George Elliot~

Friday, November 1, 2013


 I'm very excited today to have  
as my guest. 
She's answered a few questions in regards to her  release of  
a free download
and her upcoming debut novel Reborn book one of the Fate Challenges

You're an editor, writer, Vice President of Valley Writer's and a member of several writing groups, was this always your goal? Please tell us a little about your writing journey and current goals.

I never thought I would do anything with books beyond read them. In high school and my first two years of college, my goal was to be an opera singer until I changed majors to Classics (Ancient Greeks/Romans). When I got my library job, I considered getting a Masters in Library Science, but then I started writing (beyond online roleplaying and fanfiction) because I had ideas and time at the new full-time day job. I'd love to eventually make enough money with my writing to supplement my library pay or even be a full-time writer, but that could take awhile.

What is speculative fiction, what made you choose it, and what are your goals for this or other genre's. 

Speculative fiction is an umbrella term for fantastical genres such as science fiction, fantasy, horror, and alternate history. Speculative fiction focuses on the question: what if. I have a tendency to jump between writing horror, fantasy, and science fiction, so it made sense that I was more of a speculative fiction author than just a fantasy author, etc. I have quite a few stories planned that involve speculative fiction, although I'd eventually like to branch out and write a few contemporaries and even mysteries.

You're offering your short story, Magna's Plea, as a free download. Is this part of a marketing plan for your book coming out in 2014 – Reborn, book one of the Fate Challenges. Is there a plan behind your 'madness'?

Yes, having Magna's Plea for free is part of my marketing plan for Reborn. In Magna's Plea, the reader will get a sense for the world in The Fate Challenges as well as be able to read a sneak peek of Reborn, which is the prologue. If the reader likes what she sees, then she'll be more likely to add Reborn on Goodreads or sign up for my newsletter. At least that's the plan. Plus, Magna's Plea is only 5500 words, so I feel a bit weird making people pay $0.99 for it, so free is an additional bonus. Right now, it's all about spreading the word, making connections, and gaining a few new fans here and there.

Tell us about Reborn and The Fate Challenges.

To save a kingdom, a prophetess must challenge Fate.

On the day of Yssa's death and rebirth, the god Apenth selected her as the Phoenix Prophetess.

Sea serpents and gods endanger the seventeen-year-old prophetess's journey and sour the omens. Yssa is cursed instead of blessed, and her duties at the Temple of Apenth prove it. She spends her days reading dusty scrolls, which does nothing to help her forget the boy she left at home. The ferryman's son won't leave Yssa alone for two grains of sand either and is a distraction she can't predict.

When visions of her parents' murders consume her, Yssa races across an ocean to stop the future. If she can't change Fate, then she'll refuse to be the Phoenix Prophetess any longer. Fate, however, has other plans for her and the kingdom.
Reborn is a 90,000+ word YA Epic Fantasy novel and the first book in The Fate Challenges. It was also my first novel I wrote back in 2009. The idea for Reborn came from a roleplaying character I had in a Harry Potter RPG. She was stillborn, but her father revived her. From then on, she had the gift of prophecy. I liked the idea, but I wanted to take a character with that premise and create my own world; thus, Yssa and the Kingdom of Amora was born. I knew from day one that The Fate Challenges would be a trilogy because of Yssa's character growth evolves well to fit three novels, and it's my goal to have at least the first drafts completed of Reforged (Book Two) and Redestined (Book Three) finished by May when Reborn releases.

An Excerpt:
12-13 Days of Luquiry
Year 1717 AUC

Tendrils of smoke swirled heavenward. The smoldering stench reached Princess Magna at the top of the palace’s northern tower. She wrinkled her nose at the unpleasant odor, yet it still smelled better than the filth plaguing the besieged seven-hilled city.

She’d vowed to protect Amora. Her heart shattered a little more each day at the devastation afflicting her kingdom.

The once grassy and flower-filled plain sprouted dust plumes from the trampling feet. As the sun neared the western horizon, a bloody hue washed over the battlefield. Tiny, metallic dins and men’s shouts rang out. Magical bursts flashed in the sky like Thean’s lightning, beautiful and deadly. A wooden catapult hurled a human-sized stone slab into the city’s wall. Magna jerked away from the opened window she stood before, as if the object had struck her instead. Rock crumbled from the impact, but the barrier held.

When the reddish orb sank lower, the fighting ceased. War’s chaos parted into two orderly sides, and soldiers crossed the field to gather their dead.

She brushed a shaky hand over her cheeks. Tears dampened her face, and she struggled to turn away from the battle before her. Almost two months had passed since the Apenthans had begun their attack Amora. How much longer could the Amorans—she—stay safe behind their impenetrable wall?

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To download this short story for free: Amazon / Nook / iTunes / Kobo / Smashwords / Goodreads
Read online at Wattpad
Add to Goodreads

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About the Author: A self-proclaimed bookworm, Cherie Reich is a speculative fiction writer, freelance editor, book blogger, and library assistant living in Virginia. Her short stories have appeared in magazines and anthologies, and her books include the horror series Nightmare, a space fantasy novella trilogy titled Gravity, and the fantasy series The Foxwick Chronicles. She is Vice President of Valley Writers and a member of the Virginia Writers Club and Untethered Realms.

Her debut YA Epic Fantasy novel Reborn, book one in The Fate Challenges, will be released on May 23, 2014.

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This Friday, the first day of November 
I am thankful for early Christmas presents,
for the NANO challenge that is all about focus and WRITING!
and for the beginning of a holiday season that's all about family!

Wishing you all a great, great beginning to the