Date Published: 08-10-2021
Though he doesn’t know it, Marcus Talent is special. Unfortunately for Marcus, he discovers this unexpectedly when he wakes up in an unfamiliar forest, has his prosthetic arm eaten by a horrifying monster, and then wakes up in his own bed, terrified and bleeding.
Marcus’s dad, Deacon, has answers. He heals Marcus’s new injuries, promising to answer all of Marcus’s questions about what happened the next day after school. But when Marcus gets home, he finds his dad missing and a ransom note appears out of a screaming hole in the sky. The only demand: travel again to get him back.
Helped by his human friends, Marcus sets out to find his dad in a world filled with creatures he couldn’t have imagined. Some of them are friendly. Some of them want to murder him. Or each other. They’re not picky. And everyone seems to know of his famous father, who has been hiding a lot more than an entire other world.
Cynthia McDonald is the author of Life is a Terminal Illness and Drōmfrangil (Autumn 2021 from Cinnabar Moth Publishing) as well as a childhood memoir, two American history books, and the “I See Your Hearts” blog.
Cynthia was born in Richmond, Virginia in 1972. She spent her early adulthood raising two sons with her husband and then, after returning to college, enjoyed a fulfilling career as a Respiratory Therapist and a Respiratory Supervisor. This included several years of volunteer work on the Wisconsin state respiratory board, which concluded with a term as the President of the board.
She started writing in her forties, after the diagnosis of a low-grade cancerous brain tumor forced her to stop working outside of her home. Cynthia has also lived with disability throughout her adult life, as advancing degenerative disk disease and multiple surgeries have caused her to live with chronic pain and made it difficult for her to remain involved in activities outside of her home.
She and her husband recently moved to Oregon to be closer to her oldest son and his family, including her beloved grandson, whose toddler years are adding a lot of delight to her life! Her two German Shorthairs are also a big part of her family, as dogs always have been.
A Regency Romance Summer Anthology
Regency Romance, Historical Romance
Date Published: July 20, 2021
Publisher: Dreamstone Publishing
Seven stories of Regency heroines and heroes finding love in the face of obstructions: mayhem, malice, and mischief.
Varying heat levels, both in the text and during the English summertime.
Seven best-selling and award-winning authors team up to delight your summer holiday reading.
A Maiden for a Marquess by Arietta Richmond – Scandal, marriage, dark secrets – is love possible?
Saracen’s Gift by Janis Susan May – From heiress to prisoner – will love save her?
Seaside Summer by Victoria Hinshaw – A wounded warrior fights for love against the odds
The Jewel Thief and the Earl by Regina Jeffers – Each find more than a missing necklace.
Wildflowers and Wiles by Summer Hanford – Is impersonating a peer wrong if you’re family?
The Journey by Becca St. John – Batten down the hatches, hidden hearts on board!
Weekend at Baron E’s by Ebony Oaten – Newly wed to newly dead – don’t tell the in-laws!
About the Author
Regina Jeffers, an award-winning author of historical cozy mysteries, Austenesque sequels and retellings, as well as Regency era romances, has worn many hats over her lifetime: daughter, student, military brat, wife, mother, grandmother, teacher, tax preparer, journalist, choreographer, Broadway dancer, theatre director, history buff, grant writer, media literacy consultant, and author. Living outside of Charlotte, NC, Jeffers writes novels that take the ordinary and adds a bit of mayhem, while mastering tension in her own life with a bit of gardening and the exuberance of her “grand joys.”
Romantic Comedy, Royal Romance, Romantic Suspense
Date Published: July 9, 2021
What if your boss was a prince?…
The week I got fired, I landed a government job in Paris.
The bad news? My boss, Max Delaroche, looks like a remastered Greek god, as dazzling as the alarm in my head.
Whoop, whoop, whoop! Run while you can!
But the man intrigues me.
Wildly charismatic, he has no office savvy. He skips important staff meetings because they bore him to death. He won’t even say where he’s from!
Instead, he keeps staring at me like he’s on a treasure hunt and I have the map.
Who is this guy, and what exactly does he do here?
Could he be an undercover cop investigating government agencies?
Haha. I’m très hilarious.
If a cop can afford bespoke suits, then I’m a princess. You shall call me Your Royal Highness, Lucie la Magnifique!
Looking for a romantic comedy that’s laugh-out-loud funny, steamy, and full of thrills? Look no further than The Boss Prince, book 1 in Alix Nichols’s new IT’S RAINING ROYALS series!
About the Author
Alix Nichols is a caffeine addict, a fan of Mr. Darcy and an award-winning author. She pens sexy romantic comedies and sci-fi romances that “keep you hanging off the edge of your seat” (RT Book Reviews). At the age of six, she released her first book. It featured highly creative spelling on a dozen pages stitched together and bound in velvet paper. Decades later, she still writes. Her spelling has improved (somewhat). Currently she has one complete romance series “wide” and three in Kindle Unlimited. She lives in France with her family, including an almost-human dog.
**To read a rom-com and a sci-fi novelette FREE, visit: alixnichols.com/freebies (just copy and paste into your browser).**
She opens her reticule, whips out her smartphone, and pulls up what looks like a still frame from some CCTV footage.
To my quizzical look, she says, “Watch,” and taps Play.
A young woman stalks out of an ugly concrete building, banging the door behind her. About twenty meters down the street, she halts, spins around and barrels back toward the building. Baying, “You, jerk! You, miserable nincompoop!” she kicks the graffitied wall. Way too hard, by the looks of it. With a grimace of pain distorting her reddened face, she grabs the foot that had connected with the wall and spends the next few seconds stroking it through the flimsy sneaker while jumping on her other foot.
“You think you hurt me?” she yells at the closed door, still wincing. “You think you broke my heart? I despise you!”
Whoever is inside doesn’t respond in any audible or visible manner.
“I believed in you!” the woman shouts, letting go of her foot. “I thought you were a good person, a decent man. I thought you could handle criticism. But you’re just another douchebag!”
Balling her hands into fists, she swings as if intending to punch the door, hesitates and glances at her knuckles. It’s a low-res video but good enough to determine that it’s a security door, steel most likely. In her place, I’d be having second thoughts about punching it, too.
“Grrr!” Shaking with frustration, she kicks the door instead.
Perhaps because she’d braced herself for impact, she seems to better control the resulting pain, which emboldens her to kick again, and again until she does it at an angle too awkward to keep her balance. She lands on her bum. Cursing, she gets up and gives the door a few more angry kicks.
The “douchebag” inside makes no perceptible move.
Despite the wild inappropriateness and the involuntarily comical effect of her public display, I find myself sympathizing with this crazy chick. Which is weird, because, having broken up with my fair share of ladies, I should relate more to the man she’s besieging than to her. Yet, instead of cringing, I’m smiling at her spunk.
Also, I’m ogling her slender, perfectly proportioned figure that cancels out her ridiculous actions and dull outfit. Those lovely, firm tits give her worn, badly cut tee a shot at glory. As for that round high-perched ass, it lifts her trashy jeans all the way to the Cannes red carpet.
It’s hard to make out the individual features of her face, but the overall form of her face framed by wavy glossy hair looks exceedingly pleasing.
The video ends.
Date Published: 3/17/21
Publisher: Winter Goose Publishing
Fifteen-year-old Monte moves to the mystically jeopardized Highlands of Scotland and discovers that life as a Celtic wizard is anything but easy. Whisperings of abnormal enchantments and vicious cat siths grip the small town he now calls home. Fear is at the helm and the instigator is unknown. An indefinite moratorium on magic is enforced. In a race against darkness, Monte and his friends must choose who to trust before time runs out, even if it means breaking some rules and facing danger head on.
Ryder Hunte Clancy has lived most of her life in the desert but her heart belongs to the sea; her happy place, where brine and mist abound and allusive waves caress expansive stretches of compacted sand. A tried and true stay-at-home mom, she is often found scribbling notes between diaper changes or connecting plot points while everyone else sleeps. She survives off of toddler snacks like apple slices and cheese, and has just as much trouble keeping up with her fictional, teenage characters as she does her three small children. Mystic Invisible is her debut novel, the inspiration of which was gleaned from her husband’s homeland of Scotland, where fantasy, mystery, and folklore are rich and hits of adventure linger around every corner.
“Besides,” Garrick continued. “What else am I supposed to do? There’s not a lot of potential to
make hard and fast friends here, seeing as we’re the only Mystics around.”
“You could play with those madger thingies,” Monte suggested, as though he were the big
brother, not Garrick. He squinted at the line of firs across the field.
“And when would I ever need night-vision goggles?” Garrick asked. “That’s all they are.
“Rudimentary?” Monte could never keep up with Garrick’s fancy words.
“Primal . . . basic . . . old,” Garrick rattled off.
His rant was interrupted by a loud whoop. The shout crossed through the field—a teenage battle
call—as a pale, springy kid scurried out from the firs.
“Finn?” Monte asked. “It’s Finn Cornelius!”
Finn sprung through the jungle of grass like a nymph, fear plastered across his face, pursued by a
posse of very large high school-aged boys.
“Hey!” Garrick tore toward the group. “Get away from him!”
Monte raced after his brother. A dark blur flashed in his peripheries, knocking him to the ground.
Dull lights, like distant stars, mottled his vision as he tumbled to a stop in the muddy grass. A
girl with scraggly black hair and bronzy skin stood above him. “Cameron?” He scrambled to his
Cameron’s stare met his, her caramel eyes familiar and intense. The rainbow lights hung around
her neck, much dimmer than Monte remembered.
For the dream seekers,
The courageous champions of good cause.
For the quirky and the quelled,
The unseen genius and
The undiscovered voice.
For the loud but unheard,
The soft and tender hearted.
For the quiet and devoted.
For the wallflowers,
The late bloomers,
Those ugly ducklings, now swans.
For the invisible ones.
I see you,
I hear you,
And I believe.
We are the change.
I recently had the opportunity to give my website a makeover. In doing so, it gave me the
opportunity to pen the above mission statement. This is what I live by. It’s what I march to
every day, rain or shine. It’s what I believe; from my calloused, keyboard-typing fingers, to the
very nucleus of my being. Everyone has a voice that should be heard, most especially those who
don’t believe they do. I used to be one of those people. I was more than just a wallflower. I was
invisible; so timid and “ordinary” that I was easily overlooked. But I always craved to be heard. I
tried many things to satiate that big, booming urge inside of me. However, it wasn’t until well
into adulthood that the anvil finally dropped. With a baby on my lap and a toddler at my feet, I
picked up a pen and started writing. The rest was history. I’m still quiet by nature but I have
finally found my voice, and so can you!
Date Published: 3/26/21
Publisher: Acorn Publishing
Following a global pandemic, which has either killed or weakened most of the male population, women now dominate all aspects of life.
Dr. Morgan Digby, married to a man rendered bedbound from his bout with manflu a decade prior, is working tirelessly on a vaccine, yet obstacles keep springing up in her path.
When she meets a handsome neighbor who has never been exposed to the deadly virus, things become…complicated. There’s something between them, but he can’t leave his home.
Morgan’s struggle to remain faithful to her ailing husband isn’t her only battle. Someone has been one step ahead of her, countering her every move. Will she find a vaccine before it’s too late to protect those she loves?
About the Author
Simone de Muñoz writes dystopian, or perhaps utopian, fiction, depending on your perspective, where women drive the story and sometimes even run the world. She holds a master’s degree in public policy from UC Berkeley and a bachelor’s degree in economics from MIT, which she uses in her day job as a data analyst at a nonprofit. Based in Silicon Valley, she lives with her patient husband, their two young sons, and a grumpy dog named Fish. Manflu is her debut novel.
Morgan Digby woke up groggy from her usual nap as her self-driving, electric car pulled into the driveway of her small suburban house. She had dreamt that her husband Jonas was walking toward her on a crowded sidewalk, cradling a baby in his arms. If only any small part of that dream had the remotest possibility of coming true, Morgan could be happy.
She stretched and brushed her black bangs out of her eyes, feeling the hollow spaces beneath them with her fingertips. Tired from a busy day working at the lab on the manflu vaccine, the nap prepared her for the long evening of caretaking that lay ahead. Her husband Jonas was mostly bedridden after his bout with the pandemic ten years ago. His body no longer actively fought an infection, but he would never be the same.
Morgan was about to enter her house when she saw her neighbor put down her garden rake and cross the street to chat. Sarah, like many women nowadays, no longer bothered with a bra. Her full, bouncing breasts, barely covered by a thin, V-neck t-shirt, drew the eye. An image quickly flashed through Morgan’s mind of a time years before when Sarah had pressed those breasts against her and leaned over to kiss her on the lips. Morgan quickly shook her head to clear the thought.
“Morgan, big news!” said Sarah when she was within gossip range. “Beth’s nephew came to stay with her. He’s a Vulny. I got a glimpse of him through the curtains, and he is a hunk and a half. Pale, obviously. About 5’10” with black, curly hair and surprisingly muscular. He must spend a lot of time lifting weights. I’m charging my vibro3000 as we speak.”
Wow, a Vulny! Morgan had never seen one before. Vulnies were the men who had never gotten manflu and were therefore still vulnerable to it. These men could not go out in public for fear of being infected, thus the pale skin. Women could be infected as well as transmit the virus to others; however, they experienced very mild cold-like symptoms and quickly recovered. Both men and women who had previously been infected could not contract the virus again; however, men with post-manflu viral syndrome were immunocompromised and at high risk of contracting other infections.
Morgan immediately thought of the vaccine she was working on, and she wondered if this man could be a test subject for it when it was completed. She wanted to rush over to Beth’s house right away to meet him and find out more, but she couldn’t. Jonas waited inside for her to make his dinner, bathe him, and keep him company. She was accustomed to putting aside her own desires to care for her husband, but she still felt a sting of disappointment each time.
Simone de Muñoz
Author of Manflu
March 16, 2021
After the 2016 election, I felt an emotion that I had never felt before–rage. It was scary. I had to find a safe place for those feelings, so I started to write. In my fiction, women weren’t the victims of misogynistic men and a patriarchal society–they were powerful heroes. If women couldn’t come out on top in real life, they could in my fiction. I slowly thought about sharing my writing with the world–maybe other women could read my work and feel the possibility of this power.
I had the idea for my novel, Manflu in the summer of 2019. The “Me Too” movement was in full swing and I thought, what if there was a way to get these men out of power and replace them with women? What would the world look like if women were in charge? I came up with the idea of a pandemic that weakened or killed men. I started writing down my thoughts, centering the story around a married researcher seeking a vaccine for manflu when she meets a handsome neighbor who has never been infected. And only a few short months later, Covid hit!
I attended my first writing conference in February of 2020 right before the US basically shut down. I met the women who would eventually publish my book at that conference and I remember them saying, “This concept is so timely, you have to get the book written as soon as possible.” We had no idea what was coming because there were hardly any known cases of Covid in the US at that time. However, it was clear that the pandemic was about to affect us all. Despite a full-time job and family obligations, I wrote as quickly as I could to take advantage of the moment.
I found myself in the midst of a pandemic, writing about a pandemic. For a while, all I thought about were viruses as I researched pandemics, tried to keep my family safe from Covid, and worked to help clients affected economically by the pandemic at my nonprofit job. I finished writing the book in the fall of 2020, right around the time it became clear that my children wouldn’t return to in-person school for the 2020-21 school year.
My hope is that I have ultimately created a novel that is timely, and yet a break from the pandemic-restricted world that we are all still living in right now, and that Manflu helps to empower women to dream of a different society where they are in charge. It is always a good time for sexy, escapist fiction featuring diverse characters and a strong female lead and it is an especially apt moment for Manflu.
After four seasons without a single offer of marriage, Lady Maxine Pearson realizes perfection is decidedly overrated.More info →
On a battlefield in Afghanistan, Sgt. Ryder Bronson makes an oath to protect his dying friend’s wife from a rogue cop—and from the passion that will threaten to overwhelm them both.More info →
How do you heal a broken heart?More info →