Melange Books 2015 Giveaway Extravaganza!

black                                                                                                                                                              Love to read? I know! Me too, so have some fun—visit Melange Books to enter this fantastic giveaway! Check it out, because ebooks, ARC’s, and autographed print books are up for grabs, plus one lucky winner receive a brand new Kindle Fire HD6 AND a $25 Amazon Gift Card to stock it full of books! Sounds awesome, right?

Please check out my books The Twelfth Paladin (supernatural/thriller) and Guardian 2632 (science fiction/adventure). Romance, murder/mystery, and fantasy/adventure themed books are there and accounted for as well. Take your time while scrolling to find the books that are perfect for you!

twelfthpaladin

guardian2632

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

kragan

 

FindingTWBack

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To enter, go HERE: http://melange-books.com/2015NYGiveaway.html
Keep in mind: A LOT of giveaways will load on that link above. Please let the page fully load everything before entering. Click the link, go check your Facebook or Twitter, then check back!

HeartExile

And for the blog comments entries, visit, and then leave a post here! http://www.melange-books.com/blog/new-years-giveaway-extravaganza/

GRAND PRIZE

One (1) Grand Prize Winner will receive a Kindle Fire HD6 and a $25 Amazon Gift Card.

Two (2) second place winners will each receive a $20 Amazon Gift Card.

SecondBest

 

 

1CovertExposureHappy New Year!

Thanks for visiting the Noracast.

 

 

ForgettingFallenwood

The Twelfth Paladin Book Tour/Let the Games Begin!

TTP PIC

The latest tour for The Twelfth Paladin, organized by Paranormal Cravings, was a blast! The entries and lovely comments were all greatly appreciated. Thank you to everyone who has checked out the tour and to the tour hosts. Visit the Noracast a few more minutes for one more GIVEAWAY!

Giveaway 5/19/2013-6/14/2013:

Enter for your chance to win either an e-book or print copy of The Twelfth Paladin and a $25.00 Amazon gift code.

In The Twelfth Paladin, Jake Cottrell is a roguish hero who tests the patience of an angel who has been ordered to protect him, all the while pushing his luck to infuriate Satan as well. Jake must decide who he really is…a good guy with an ornery side, or a bad guy with a wicked core.

To enter this giveaway, simply comment to say “hello,” OR answer these questions: Do you believe hope always exists so anyone can change for the better? If so, do you know of anyone who has done so?

The WINNER is the 9th comment…ARREYAH! Please email me (noraweston.nw@gmail.com) and say if you want the e-book or print copy.

Congrats to Arreyah, and thanks to all who entered.

Random.org June 2013

Two reviews were completed by Kaidans Seduction and Books, Books, and More Books. Feel free to explore a bit about The Twelfth Paladin. Good luck in the giveaway!

Kaidans Seduction Review

The Twelfth Paladin is a crazy story with lot’s of action and suspense that will leave you reeling. This story had side stories that made the whole book come together. There was never a dull moment and I really enjoyed it. Plus the characters all seemed to feed off of each other and need one another.

We have Jake who is angry because he has been marked by Micah a crazy rebellious angel with angelfire. Jake’s life changed after he was in an accident on his bike. He woke up and he was able to heal quickly and his senses were different and he started having dreams well more like nightmares. With a rebellious streak in him Jake decides he is going to test hell and tells them to come and get him and burn his soul. What hell decides is they will grant him his wish and they send a temptress Rachel.

But things start to go haywire because Davis Jake’s old enemy comes to town and together they stir up the pot with lot’s of drama and trouble. Then if things could not get worse Jake finds out the only girl he has ever loved is going to marry Davis. Man this sets Jake off into a tail spin and he decides he wants to complete his transition into the Twelfth Paladin and save the girl he loves. Only one small problem Jake has pissed off hell and they want their soul and they are coming for it.

What will Jake do? Will he be able to save the girl he loves? Will he find redemption?

(5 of 5)

Books, Books, and More Books Review

This was a really intense book to read.  It was very much about the battle between Heaven and Hell, right and wrong, good and evil.  It has angels and demons, virtuous women and succubae, and choosing to do good or evil.  It contains a strong sexual theme and furious battles where personal souls are at risk.  It was at times funny and at times very difficult to read.

That said the story was gripping.  I was on the edge of my proverbial seat, the entire time I was reading.  I have read angel/demon stories before but none quite so compelling.  I loved the characters, even when l hated what they were doing.

I give this book 5 out of 5 clouds.

The Twelfth Paladin

Blurb: In The Twelfth Paladin, good against evil battles as an angel, demons, and a temptress extraordinaire, named Rachel Darnell, vie for the soul of Jake Cottrell. Jake foolishly dares Hell to burn him. Hell agrees.

Scarred with angelfire by a rebellious angel, named Micah, Jake Cottrell is sanctioned to become the twelfth paladin in Micah’s supernatural unit of slayers. However, regret abounds as Micah is banished and ordered to protect what he now despises…a human he believes is unworthy of such an honor. Never fear, Jake is a seeker of mischief who soars on a blistering blacktop to escape the wrath of Hell while he transforms into the twelfth paladin.

TTP Giveaway

Website: http://www.2noraweston.com

Blog: Noracast https://noraweston.wordpress.com

You Tube Trailer: http://youtu.be/_Nwz8GBdlvE

Twitter: almostsanelady

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/noraweston.nw

 EXCERPT

Preface

Forbidden desire incited, I fell into Rachel’s maddening world feeling her splendid, bare breasts upon me. No rest for the wicked. A bit delirious, “Damn you,” slipped through my lips knowing I stood upon the jagged edge between life and death. Fuming with monstrous hunger, I danced on that edge feeling good and evil collide in every cell of my body. “Wait…oh…my God, just wait,” I said running my fingers through her black as midnight hair.

“I’ll wait for nothing,” said Rachel skimming my neck with claws fit only for a beast. “You’re mine.” More bewitching kisses, irresistible and dreadful at the same time, demanded I fall into chaos.

Tightening my grip on sin, I said, “You’re unbelievable, magnificent.” The computer screen flickered with a deep blue light as hatred in my soul grew for Rachel, but my flesh…cursed and weak, was so anxious for her essence it made me sick. You’ll be the death of me, but I’d die a happy man. Uh, hold on a second. I don’t want to die. Ready to escape her vindictive entrapment, I dared to look upon Rachel’s eternal beauty saying, “I won’t…can’t let you in.”

“Too late.” Refusing to budge, Rachel slithered her smoking-hot body all over mine sparking a wildfire in my lust filled skin. “You beckoned me,” she said mesmerizing me with eyes so dark they had to be portals to Hell. Soft laughter, accompanied by a playful caress, extracted all fear while Rachel ingested the precious beams of moonlight. “You need me, Jake.” Left awestruck by the mystical presence, shadows froze at the mere sight of her.

“Wrong…you need me,” I proclaimed as every inch of my throbbing, hard body burned for her.

“Choose your words carefully, well…that is if you want to keep your tongue.” Sitting on top of me, she scraped my jaw with those deadly claws saying, “So shut up. I know what you crave. Yes…I…do.” Rachel slid down my tormented body making sure I’d regret rejecting her. Molten hot lips scorched my flesh, and then she chanted a devilish spell that devoured all guilt.

Sexual torment, synthesized to the nth degree of potency, ignited in my veins with a vengeance. No, stop—don’t ever stop. Sh—shit. This can’t be happening again.

No mercy existed as Rachel licked my face and then bit my bottom lip drawing fresh blood to quench her primitive thirst. Glaring into my eyes, she smiled wiping warm blood from her perfectly glazed, red lips. “Um, sin-filled wine.” Soulless eyes gleamed with unadulterated evil as her intoxicating scent and mouthwatering body seduced my soul.

Choppy, maniacal rambling echoed like thunder and then dulled to become a terrifying murmur the likes of which only the Tower of Babble could contain. The hushed turbulence in the room frolicked with Rachel’s enticing lawlessness, until at long last…my conscience revved up to kick my ass. I halted Rachel saying, “I don’t want you anymore. To Hell with you!” I awoke sweating and exhausted from the lunacy buzzing throughout my mind.

Heavy from the encounter, my eyes twitched. Free from Rachel’s spell, moonlight attacked optic nerves extinguishing the rampant fire inside me. Light? Yes, it’s virtuous…and when light is summoned, it’s an almighty force to be reckoned with. That was a priceless lesson for this seeker of mischief to learn.

In the unguarded stillness of the night, I sat up in bed shaking my head while marveling at Rachel’s ardent pursuit. That beautiful…but dangerous bitch is still messing with me. Will it ever end? Feeling fresh, blood-ridden wounds on my chest made my heart flutter. “I let her into my dreams and now look at me,” I whispered catching my breath. Well, thank God I survived this one. Close call…yeah, really close. Sorry to say, the netherworld had splattered my nighttime reality with enviable, but hazardous sexual antics that, if accepted, had the ability to conquer any sense of righteousness I still retained.

Buy Links:

Melange Books:

http://www.melange-books.com/authors/noraweston/westontwelfthpaladin.html

Amazon-

http://www.amazon.com/The-Twelfth-Paladin-ebook/dp/B005HHUKY2/ref=tmm_kin_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1365126003&sr=8-1

The Book Depository-

http://www.bookdepository.com/Twelfth-Paladin-Nora-Weston/9781612351766

Bio: Nora Weston’s fiction and poetry slips in-between and all around science fiction, Nora Weston PK1fantasy, and horror. Her publishing credits include the novels Guardian 2632 and The Twelfth Paladin, plus anthologies, magazines, and e-zines. Themes found in Nora’s work relate to good against evil, Internet safety, the powerful consequences for one’s actions, and the ability we all possess to improve the world. She’s had the pleasure of reaching people through the airwaves on radio stations throughout the US. Recently, her work was published for Bête Noire and Crack the Spine. Feel free to download previous interviews and segments from Desmond Haas/Romance Radio Network and Blog Talk Radio’s Not Picture Perfect, plus B.K. Walker has interviewed Nora on Blog Talk Radio as well. Contact Nora Weston:noraweston.nw@gmail.com

________________________________________________________________

Questions? Comments? Feel free to contact Nora. noraweston.nw@gmail.com

Thanks for visiting the Noracast!

‘Tis the Season to Read Giveaway

Smile! You’re visiting the Noracast on a good day, no—a great day. Why?

As luck would have it, today begins the ‘Tis the Season to Read Giveaway! Curling up on a frigid winter night in your favorite, old chair with hot tea and a treat or two by your side is only made better with the addition of a fabulous book. For me, this means the book is usually a paranormal adventure romance, a fantasy complete with breathtaking locations, or maybe a science fiction journey filled with enough horrific moments to keep the zzz’s away. Yes! I’d easily trade in sleep  for memorable moments conjured up by my imagination that were inspired by authors who know how to spark curiosity and the promise of a grand adventure if I keep turning the pages.

Prizes? One winner will receive my supernatural/thriller “The Twelfth Paladin,” plus a $25.00 dollar Amazon or Book Depository gift card to spread the joy of reading just a bit during the holiday season. The book is available in print, e-book, or Kindle. This is an international giveaway. Random.org will choose the winner from the total number of entries.

The Twelfth Paladin

In “The Twelfth Paladin,” good against evil battles as an angel, demons, and a temptress extraordinaire, named Rachel Darnell, vie for the soul of Jake Cottrell. Jake foolishly dares Hell to burn him. Hell agrees.

Scarred with angelfire by a rebellious angel, named Micah, Jake Cottrell is sanctioned to become the twelfth paladin in Micah’s supernatural unit of slayers. However, regret abounds as Micah is banished and ordered to protect what he now despises…a human he believes is unworthy of such an honor. Never fear, Jake is a seeker of mischief who soars on a blistering blacktop to escape the wrath of Hell while he transforms into the twelfth paladin.

How to ENTER? It’s easy! In “The Twelfth Paladin,” Jake Cottrell has a difficult time learning to count his blessings, like his family and friends…until they are placed in jeopardy because of his actions. This is the time of year many of us take pause to be extra thankful for our loved ones and for the opportunities we have to be productive. To enter: remind us all of something or someone to be thankful for. ‘Tis the season to celebrate and share our resources and time! This giveaway ENDS on December 7, 2012, so the gift card can be used in time for Christmas.

 Happy holidays, and thanks for visiting the Noracast!

Nora Weston

Twitter: almostsanelady

Website

Facebook

 

THANKS to everyone who entered. The 8th comment, SPAV, is the Winner…congrats!

Merry Christmas!

Christmas winner

 

Something Wicked Comes to the Noracast!

Something Wicked Comes to the Noracast!

Something Wicked Comes….bringing Zombies, Werewolves, Vampires, Ghosts, Witches and more.  Oh My!  What is this wicked thing?  Why a month long blogging event celebrating all books paranormal, supernatural, or Halloween related.  Every day during the month of October there will be several stops.  Each blogger will be featuring a favorite paranormal book and offering it for a giveaway.  Think of it as a month long Blog Trick or Treating Event…

 

Will Spook For Books!

Thanks to Heidi@Rainy Day Ramblings and Babbling About Books, October will be a month filled with Halloween magic, amazing books, and prizes galore. Check out the entire schedule for the Something Wicked Comes Giveaway/Hop! Entering is easy. Simply leave a comment with your email info. Feel free to suggest one of your favorite books to others, offer up a Halloween party tip, or just say,”Hello!” Random.org will be used to choose a winner from the total number of comments received. This giveaway begins 10/10/2012 and ends 10/18/2012.

To get you in the mood for a bit of creepiness and all things Halloween, enjoy…

Archaic Mystique
By Nora Weston

eyes full of cerulean blue
sparkling with a hypnotic gleam,
lures innocence to skim a darkened fate
where every chilled breath is stolen

no matter, she cannot resist
his pale white flesh sculpted from below
corrupted beauty dangerous and cursed
contagious…contemptible, yet craved

maybe it was the spiced autumn air,
or possibly the glazed red moon
maybe it was modern day witches
or ghosts bought from Dollar Zone

no treating, just tricking of a mystical kind
a kind with a bite sure to please
forever the master of illusion
on All Hallows’ Eve

                                                                            

Now for the goodies! Up for grabs at the Noracast is my supernatural thriller The Twelfth Paladin, and a box filled with Halloween decorations and party items, plus a $15.00 Amazon Gift Code. (US/Canada entries) The Twelfth Paladin is available in print, e-book, or Kindle versions. This twisted tale takes Jake Cottrell for the ride of his life as he falls into hellish chaos by way of a dangerous email that invites Jake to play with wickedness. Let’s keep this an International Event! If someone outside of the US/Canada is the winner, he/she will receive The Twelfth Paladin (print, e-book, or Kindle versions) and a $20.00 Gift Code from the Book Depository.

The Twelfth Paladin

Good against evil battles as an angel, demons, and a temptress extraordinaire, named Rachel Darnell, vie for the soul of Jake Cottrell. Jake foolishly dares Hell to burn him. Hell agrees.

Scarred with angelfire by a rebellious angel, named Micah, Jake Cottrell is sanctioned to become the twelfth paladin in Micah’s supernatural unit of slayers. However, regret abounds as Micah is banished and ordered to protect what he now despises…a human he believes is unworthy of such an honor. Never fear, Jake is a seeker of mischief who soars on a blistering blacktop to escape the wrath of Hell while he transforms into the twelfth paladin.

The Twelfth Paladin is for you if…

  •  you adore mischievous, strong-willed heroes who learn things the hard way, but have a heart of gold. Did I mention Jake is super-hot, absolutely a mouthwatering specimen?
  • villains, like Rachel Darnell…a gorgeous temptress extraordinaire from Hell, intrigue you because of her unsurpassed beauty and supernatural power, plus her insatiable need to possess Jake just might damn him forever.
  • a thrill comes your way while reading about battles between good and evil, especially if a mighty angel is involved who manages to get himself banished from heaven.
  • you like to laugh! Yes, winning a supernatural battle—saving one’s soul is super serious business, but The Twelfth Paladin has feisty characters all willing and able to bring a smile to your face.
  • lust, murder, and revenge are a trio you can’t do without. (I mean in books!)
  • an uncontrollable desire for someone you should not crave sounds exciting, despite what all logic says, then The Twelfth Paladin is a novel for you! Check out The Twelfth Paladin on Amazon for reviews HERE.

 

More FUN for you because you also WIN…

Happy Ghouls/2, Photo Cut-out Decorations (snake, spider, pumpkin, cat, rat, skull), Party cups/14ct, Paper Plates/20ct, Napkins/20ct, Stickers/200ct, Foam Shapes/8ct, Halloween Door Cover/1ct, Happy Halloween Garland/60in, Spider Web/1bag, Happy Halloween Bag/1, Plastic Skull Glasses/2ct

Let’s get this party started, enter! Please remember your email info.

Thanks for visiting the Noracast, and Happy Halloween.

Twice is Nice in November

November. This is the month I must fight like the chickens, um…dickens, (although chickens can really fight) to keep a good sense of humor while trying to locate any sanity still left in my numb brain as I prepare for the holidays. Even though I simply cannot get warm enough November through March, I must still acknowledge the holiday season should always be filled with goodhearted activities that bring friends and families closer. Being thankful is easier to remember to do in November because of the Thanksgiving holiday, which brings to mind our freedom, and loved ones, yet the simple things in life…like hanging out with your kids or helping a neighbor are also highly valued. Below, you’ll see what I’m thankful for today, but I really could write a book about the blessings I’ve received throughout my life.

Family and Friends: I have six kids, a hubby who is one of the funniest people I’ve ever known, and two unbelievably mischievous dogs (Mushu and Tashi) who keep my life running at a marathon pace. My parents, siblings, and friends are kind plus entertaining, and thank heavens…tolerable of chaos, which comes with a clan like mine!

Electricity: Oh, I know, this may seem like a crazy one since electricity is nothing new, but without electricity, I’d have migrated to the south, because my electric blanket would be useless. Sad to say, my bedroom (in every house we’ve lived in) seems haunted, or…as I’ve said before, I’m actually a vampire! My bedroom is always the coldest room in the house no matter what the thermostat says.

Hot Tea: I will never disclose how much hot tea I drink in a day, but it is a lot. I’m not saying I’d kill for a good cup of tea, but…well, maybe I would. It does not matter to me if it is spring, summer, autumn, or winter—I must have it, and I’m so thankful there is something as simple as hot tea to help kill a bit of the cold.

Books! Well, of course, I’m thankful for books. “The Count of Monte Cristo” by Alexandre Dumas is my favorite. It has adventure, lust, murder…revenge, just everything that makes a great book. I almost always read paranormal romance, science fiction, horror, or fantasy, although history books are something I can get lost in quite easily too.

Now, on to the fun! The Twice is Nice in November contest (November 8-30) has begun. Leave a comment about something you are thankful for. It can be serious or humorous because I’m sure all comments will bring a smile to someone’s face. The winner of this contest (US/Canada) will win a print copy of “The Twelfth Paladin,” PLUS that same winner will also WIN a print copy for a friend because it’s time to get ready for the holiday season.

If you’re an International visitor, feel free to enter! The International winner will receive the e-book, as will that winner’s friend. I’d love to have both a US/Canada winner and an International winner. Questions? noraweston.nw@gmail.com

If you enjoy books about good versus evil, angels and demons, and all things supernatural…please enter!

The Twelfth Paladin 

Good against evil battles as angels, demons, and a temptress extraordinaire, named Rachel Darnell, vie for the soul of Jake Cottrell. Jake foolishly dares Hell to burn him. Hell agrees.

Scarred with angelfire by a rebellious angel, named Micah, Jake Cottrell is sanctioned to become the twelfth paladin in Micah’s supernatural unit of slayers. However, regret abounds as Micah is banished and ordered to protect what he now despises…a human he believes is unworthy of such an honor. Never fear, Jake is a seeker of mischief who soars on a blistering blacktop to escape the wrath of Hell while he transforms into the twelfth paladin.

Check out the book trailer! The Twelfth Paladin

Thank you for visiting the Noracast.

Bloodletter by Angel Haze: Giveaway!

Halloween is fast approaching, bringing with it the choice to give a trick…or treat. Interested in a frightening treat that’s been dipped into murderous mischief? “Bloodletter,” by Angel Haze, quickly grabs your attention and takes you for a wild ride with the Grim Reaper. Read my review here, and then scroll on down into Haze’s realm of nightmares…

“Bloodletter” by Angel Haze

Thou shalt not kill.

A contradictory message written in blood at the scene of a young woman’s murder. Within days, another body surfaces with a similar calling card and, to Detective Ramon Faust and Criminalist Kelly Garret, it’s clear a deadly game is underfoot.

As the rash of horrific crimes continue, a phone call unearths a shocking revelation: Nakeita isn’t the first city the elusive killer has left his mark. The Bloodletter, as dubbed by the media, has played his deadly game before.

Delving deep into the most terrifying case of Kelly’s career, threatening phone calls and flashbacks of a forgotten near-death experience challenge her sanity and the lives of everyone she loves.

Author Bio: 

Angel is a Canadian author who is an avid reader of fantasy, thriller, and mystery novels. She’s a writer of thriller and YA fantasy novels, a fitness enthusiast, and a chocolate fiend. Her free time is devoted to books, dancing, fitness training with P90x, movies and Game of Thrones. Legacies of Talimura: War of the Witch is co-authored by her husband, Slade Sewell. Slade is a man who believes himself to have been born in the wrong century. A thousand years ago, he sees himself not as a conqueror, but a strategist. He is a gamer, a husband, a die-hard Leafs fan, and a brilliant storyboarder.

Bloodletter is available on Amazon and Smashwords.

Connect with Angel:

Twitter
Facebook Page
Facebook Profile
Goodreads
MySpace

Websites:
http://www.angelhaze.com
http://www.angel-haze.blogspot.com

GIVEAWAY/October 2, 2011 -October 10, 2011

Leave a comment to enter this exciting giveaway, which is for one e-book. Good luck!

Brett Talley Visits the Noracast/Interview/Giveaway!

That Which Should Not Be by Brett Talley 

Miskatonic University has a long-whispered reputation of being strongly connected to all things occult and supernatural. From the faculty to the students, the fascination with other-worldly legends and objects runs rampant. So, when Carter Weston’s professor Dr. Thayerson asks him to search a nearby village for a book that is believed to control the inhuman forces that rule the Earth, Incendium Maleficarum, The Inferno of the Witch, the student doesn’t hesitate to begin the quest.

Weston’s journey takes an unexpected turn, however, when he ventures into a tavern in the small town of Anchorhead. Rather than passing the evening as a solitary patron, Weston joins four men who regale him with stories of their personal experiences with forces both preternatural and damned. Two stories hit close to home as they tie the tellers directly to Weston’s current mission.

His unanticipated role as passive listener proves fortuitous, and Weston fulfills his goal. Bringing the book back to Miskatonic, though, proves to be a grave mistake. Quickly, Weston realizes he has played a role in potentially opening the gate between the netherworld and the world of Man. Reversing the course of events means forgetting all he thought he knew about Miskatonic and his professor and embracing an unknown beyond his wildest imagination.

INTERVIEW

That Which Should Not Be by Brett Talley

Welcome to the Noracast, Brett! I had the privilege to review That Which should Not Be, and I must say…it is a fantastic story that held me spellbound all the way through. Congratulations on the wonderful reviews.

What inspired you to write That Which Should Not Be?

I’ve always loved horror, somewhat because I like to be scared, but mostly because of the mystery and magic that you can find there.  The real world can get kinda boring sometimes.  I like the idea of the unexplained.  I had this idea kicking around in my head for a while about a group of people, otherwise strangers, who meet on occasion to discuss stories that tie them together.  I also felt there was a lack of modern horror written in the Gothic style of so many of the great, classic works.  I put the two together, and That Which Should Not Be was born.

There were so many things I liked about That Which Should Not Be, but I especially enjoyed how you took the reader on a journey to various places. Daniel’s adventure, with his newfound friend Charles, from Venice to Vienna, then to Budapest and the troubles they encountered trying to get to Czernowitz made me wonder about your motivation for this part of the novel.

Have you traveled the world…like to Italy, Russia, and Budapest? Also, what is it about Budapest that made you want your characters to go there?

I am one of those people who saves every dime they make so they can spend it on travel.  I’ve been lucky enough to visit a lot of places, including Russia and Italy.  Sadly, I have not yet visited  Budapest, although it is high on my list of places to see.  There is something about Eastern Europe, the way it lies between multiple continents and cultures.  I mention this in the book, but you really have Africa, Europe, and Asia all melded together in one place.  You add to the fact that Eastern Europe was the battle ground between the western Christian nations and the Ottoman Empire, and you have a place that was sort of left behind while Western Europe moved on.  It strikes me as a mystical place.  It’s not a coincidence that the modern vampire myth springs from such a place.

Now I have been to Venice, and I absolutely love that city.  I hope to get back there one day.  There are just so many places to see.

If you have traveled, did you encounter anything or place truly frightening? What about in Massachusetts…is it haunted?

I’ve never been anywhere that frightened me from an otherworldly perspective.  But I have definitely found myself in some scary situations.  I think the most I have ever feared for my life was in the back of a cab near midnight on a mountain in Peru.  A friend of mine and I were out in the back country where most of the population doesn’t even speak Spanish as their first language.  Instead, the speak Quechua, which is related fairly closely to the language of the Incas.  Anyway, we are sort of careening down this darkened mountain road thinking that the next turn might be our last.  The cab driver is barely paying attention.  He has a political rally on the radio.  The speaker is working the crowd into a fever, but he is speaking Quechua, and we can’t understand anything he says.  But then, just as the speech is in mid-crescendo, the speaker yells out Seig!  And the crowd answers Heil!  That continued a few more times while I looked over at my friend and said, “Oh my God.  Our cab driver is a Nazi.”

Massachusetts is definitely haunted, by its past if nothing else.  Everywhere you go you see it, and somehow it feels older than the rest of the country.  Moreover, it is very provincial.  Boston is a long way from any other city, and it is the heart of all of New England.  It is also not a very urban place.  You drive ten minutes and you are in the country.  In places like Danvers and Ipswich, where the whispers of Old Salem and witchcraft are still thick and ever-present.

Also, what place most fascinates you that you’d love to visit?

There are several ancient sites I would like to see, Angkor Wat first on my list.  But if I could go anywhere in the world right now, it would probably be the city of Prypiat, Ukraine, better known by the name of the power plant that sits next to the city—Chernobyl.  I am fascinated with abandoned buildings, and the chance to visit a ghost town that once held 100,000 people is irresistible.  I plan on visiting soon.

I read you received a philosophy and history degree from University of Alabama before relocating to Massachusetts to attend Harvard Law School.  Having Carter Weston…your main protagonist, choose Miskatonic University over his father’s beloved Harvard Law School was a great way to use part of your own background.

Does your background include being an expert sailor like Captain Jonathan Gray? Is he based on a person you know?

Nope!  I’ve barely even been on a boat.  Growing up in Alabama, sailing was not high on my list of activities.  People in Boston often go sailing for fun, but they are all much wealthier than I am.  Maybe one day.

Have you ever experienced a terrifying storm on the open sea like your characters? You made it seem so real!

Thankfully, no.  I think one advantage writers have these days that some in the past didn’t have is that we all have access to media portrayals of a lot of the things we write about.  I can imagine what it would be like to experience that kind of storm, but it also helps that I have seen it happen before on television and in the movies.

Your book addresses the battle between good against evil, darkness and light, plus the dangers lurking far below the earth…in deep caverns of great evil and in the darkest depths of the sea. I liked this aspect of That Which Should Not Be because the caverns and great depths hide unknown evil just as much as the evil buried within some of the super wicked characters within your book.

This brings me to first impressions, which you totally like to play around with. A few of your characters caught me by surprise! I thought they were good…no, nope…no way, but it adds a lot to the plot.

So what is your take on first impressions? Are they (mostly) correct, or have you found first impressions offer up little concerning a person’s true nature?

You can learn a lot from first impressions, there is no doubt about that.  But people tend to be fairly complex.  The danger I struggle mightily to avoid when I am writing is having flat characters.  When you are writing genre fiction, that can be especially difficult—nobody wants to read a hundred pages of domestic angst in the middle of a werewolf novel, for instance.  So if nothing else, I like to try and keep people guessing about the nature of the characters.  I wanted you to never really know who you can trust in That Which Should Not Be.  I also wanted some characters to appear evil who turned out not to be.  But you know, I also think there is a fine line between keeping the audience guessing and failing to reward their expectations.  We don’t want Scar to turn out to be a good guy at the end of The Lion King.  We want the hyenas to eat him, and (*spoilers*) we cheer when they do.

Which one of your characters did you have the most fun writing and why?

Captain Jonathan Gray.  He is a very mysterious character, and I’d like to think it takes a while for the reader to get a handle on him.  Plus, I like strong characters.  Characters like him are dangerous, in a way, because you find yourself pouring everything you like about people into them, and they can come off as stereotypical.  But I think Gray has enough color to him to avoid that.

I’ve read some reviews about That Which Should Not Be, saying how it is evocative of H.P. Lovecraft’s work, and how you are well-versed in the Cthulhu mythos. That is quite a compliment!

Have you been a longtime fan of H.P. Lovecraft and the Cthulhu mythos? If so, what attracts you to that type of fiction?

I didn’t read my first Lovecraft story until I was in my second year of law school.  On a whim, I picked up The Call of Cthulhu and Other Tales, mostly because I really liked the cover.  But it was the quintessential eureka moment.  I have always had a fascination with myths and legends, with the truth they contain and how they help to explain both our past and our future.  When I was in college, I stumbled upon Plato’s depiction of Atlantis, a place I had heard of but never really knew anything about.  Then I learned about other legends of lost lands—Lemuria, the Seven Rishi Cities, Kumari Kandam, Mu, Hyperborea, Thule.  In law school, I would often visit the esoteria section of the library, deep in the bowls of the Widener library, and read old grimoires and holy books of questionable authenticity.  I was very interested in writing something about a lost civilization that disappeared beneath the waves and of the knowledge that disappeared with it.  Once I found Lovecraft, I just devoured everything he had ever written.  When I started on That Which Should Not Be, I decided I wanted to pay homage to many of the classic works of horror and speculative fiction.  Lovecraft was the most prominent.

Who are some of your favorite authors?

Lovecraft, Dostoevsky, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Hemmingway.  Probably read the most books by Stephen King, though.

What is the first book that made a lasting impression on you and why?

I have always been a reader, but for a long time I did so either as disposable entertainment or because someone in school made me.  The first book that really affected me was The Great Gatsby.  I absolutely love that book.  I rarely read books more than once, but I have probably read The Great Gatsby ten times.  The only book I’ve read more is That Which Should Not Be.  If I could write one sentence in my entire life that is as great as “So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past,” I’d die feeling like I accomplished something great.  I honestly don’t think any book has ever captured the essence of the human condition like The Great Gatsby.  And it’s not even 50,000 words long.

Where can readers find you on the Internet?

One blessed day I will have a website.  For now, friend me on Facebook and twitter.  I am also on the new-fangled Google+, as well as Goodreads and Library Thing.

Where can readers purchase That Which Should Not Be?

At all your finest retailers, including Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

That Which Should Not Be: Amazon

That Which Should Not Be: Barnes & Noble

That Which Should Not Be: JournalStone

JournalStone: Facebook, Twitter

Brett Talley: Bio

A native of the South, Brett Talley received a philosophy and history degree from the University of Alabama before moving to witch-haunted Massachusetts to attend Harvard Law School. When people ask, Brett tells them he writes for fortune and glory. But the truth is the stories in his head simply refuse to stay put. Brett loves every kind
of fiction—from horror to literary to historical to sci-fi—as long as there are fantastic characters with a compelling purpose. There’s still magic to be found in fiction, the mysterious and the unknown still beckon there, and the light can always triumph over the
darkness, no matter how black the night may be.

Brett writes when he can, though he spends most of his time working as a lawyer so that he can put food on the table. That is, until the air grows cool and crisp and fall descends. For then it is football time in the South, and Brett lives and dies with the Alabama Crimson Tide. Roll Tide.

Thank you for visiting the Noracast, Brett!

GIVEAWAY/September 23-30: Here’s your chance to win the e-book version of That Which Should Not Be by Brett Talley. (2 copies available)

Giveaway Details:  I’d like to match the book with people’s tastes, so comment about your favorite horror novel, and I’ll pick two people whose tastes match up best!

TBR List & Hot Tea for Me

Michigan…as lovely as it can be, with warm summer air that’s happy to dance upon a breeze and beautiful lakes for plenty of fun in the sun, gets hit hard once winter begins. Oh! I’m a northern girl, I should not complain, but frigid air, crunchy snow, and ice-covered roads do not get along with me—at all. Since I cannot fly south for the winter, my plan is to dive into my “to be read” list, try some new teas, and make darn sure my electric blanket is good to go. I know, such a wild woman I am.

So, what’s on my TBR list that I’m dying to read? Plenty of paranormal books, because those are my favorite, and a suspenseful thriller…that promises a dash of humor called “The Reluctant.” Take a look below to see if any of these books pique your interest!

Witch Hunt by Devin O’Branagan

 Leigh has been married to a Hawthorne for a decade, but never knew the family secret: the Hawthornes are witches. When the dynamic Preacher Cody instigates a new, world-wide witch hunt, Leigh must choose sides. Will she stand with her husband and children, or will she run? This isn’t the first witch hunt the Hawthornes have faced, but it could be their last. Will anyone survive?

A classic novel, updated for the 21st Century!

 “Witch Hunt” will be read while I sip on Vanilla Earl Grey Black Tea, which STASH says has a “unique blend of fine quality black teas with a hint of bergamot and natural vanilla flavor. Smooth and aromatic with an amber color in the cup.”

The Reluctant (Crayder Chronicles) by C.S. Splitter 

Action, adventure, suspense, and thriller in one story told with a liberal dose of humor.

Tom’s problems are not unique. His business is failing and his wife has to work too many hours to make ends meet. He is under some rather large financial pressures and wants more from his marriage and his life.

He finds his respite in the air as a private pilot. Unfortunately for Tom, he is behind on payments for his plane and is forced to take odd jobs from a local crime boss. Tom is no criminal, but the errands he is running are just slightly on the wrong side of the law and the money is almost good enough to allow him to make his plane payments.

Just as things begin to come under some semblance of control, he meets a woman who just might represent the adventure he seeks. He soon discovers that appearances, and beautiful women, can sometimes be deceiving.

“The Reluctant” is the first in the Crayder Chronicles series and yet is a standalone story with a satisfying conclusion of its own.

Chai Spice Black Tea also from STASH has a “spicy, aromatic blend of black teas, ginger, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, clove and cardamom,” and it sounds like a perfect companion for Spiltter’s suspense/thriller.

Verland: The Transformation by B.E. Scully

True crime writer Elle Bramasol is drawn into a macabre mystery when incarcerated Hollywood producer Eliot Kingman asks her to write a book about his case. As she delves deeper into Kingman’s murder conviction, she discovers that he possesses a centuries old diary written by an elusive vampire named Verland. Uncovering the transformative secrets held within the diary’s pages, Elle is drawn deeper into both Kingman’s deadly schemes and Verland’s dark world of shadows. When the two finally collide, the stage is set for a climactic battle over mankind’s ultimate prize: eternal triumph over death. But will the Holy Grail of immortality turn out to be the cruelest curse of all?

Exploring the allure of the shadowy places between life and death, between fantasy and reality, and the ultimate power of belief, Verland: The Transformation is a gothic-inspired tour de force, a brooding return to the roots of the vampire genre that goes for the throat from page one until the final, bone-chilling climax.

Harney and Sons Cranberry Autumn Tea will be my delight as I devour this book. Sweet and tart, this black tea has cranberry and orange flavors.

Daimon: A Prequel to Half-Blood (Covenant 0.5) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

“Love in my world usually ended up with someone hearing ‘I smite thee!’ as she was cursed to be some lame flower for the rest of her life.”

For three years, Alexandria has lived among mortals—pretending to be like them and trying to forget the duty she’d been trained to fulfill as a child of a mortal and a demigod. At seventeen, she’s pretty much accepted that she’s a freak by mortal standards… and that she’ll never be prepared for that duty.

According to her mother, that’s a good thing.

But as every descendant of the gods knows, Fate has a way of rearing her ugly head. A horrifying attack forces Alex to flee Miami and try to find her way back to the very place her mother had warned her she should never return—the Covenant. Every step that brings her closer to safety is one more step toward death… because she’s being hunted by the very creatures she’d once trained to kill.

The daimons have found her.

Sounds exciting, doesn’t it? A cool Peppermint Herbal Tea from Lipton will be the choice for this book.

 Bloodletter by Angel Haze

A contradictory message written in blood at the scene of a young woman’s murder. Within days, another body surfaces with a similar calling card and, to Detective Ramon Faust and Criminalist Kelly Garret, it’s clear a deadly game is underfoot.

As the rash of horrific crimes continue, a phone call unearths a shocking revelation: Nakeita isn’t the first city the elusive killer has left his mark. The Bloodletter, as dubbed by the media, has played his deadly game before.

Delving deep into the most terrifying case of Kelly’s career, threatening phone calls and flashbacks of a forgotten near-death experience challenge her sanity and the lives of everyone she loves.

A tangy, spicy tea is a “must-do” while reading about Kelly’s harrowing adventure. Lipton’s Orange Herbal Tea has tempted me to try it since it contains hibiscus flowers, cinnamon, orange peels, roasted chicory root, natural flavor, licorice root, soy lecithin, and cloves.

Domingo’s Angel by Jenny Twist

When Angela turns up in a remote Spanish mountain village, she is so tall and so thin and so pale that everyone thinks she is a ghost or a fairy or the dreadful mantequero that comes in the night and sucks the fat from your bones.

But Domingo knows better. “Soy Angela,” she said to him when they met – “I am an angel.” Only later did he realize that she was telling him her name and by then it was too late and everyone knew her as Domingo’s Angel.

This is the story of their love affair. But it is also the story of the people of the tiny mountain village – the indomitable Rosalba – shopkeeper, doctor, midwife and wise woman, who makes it her business to know everything that goes on in the village; Guillermo, the mayor, whose delusions of grandeur are rooted in his impoverished childhood; and Salva the Baker, who risked his life and liberty to give bread to the starving children.

The events in this story are based on the real experiences of the people of the White Villages in Southern Spain and their struggle to keep their communities alive through the years of war and the oppression of Franco’s rule.

Ah…a love affair to remember, so for this novel, I’ll stick to the tea I choose most often, Orange Pekoe and Cut Black Tea Blend.

These books will heat up the chilly, autumn nights, and then make sure to keep my mind sizzling with mystery and paranormal activity all winter long. I’m also anxious to read Curious Hearts, Endurance, and Full Moon Bites from my publisher Melange Books. What’s on your TBR list? Have a book or tea suggestion for me? Feel free to comment!

Thanks for visiting the Noracast.

*All book content (from Goodreads) belongs to the publishers of Witch Hunt, The Reluctant, Daimon: A Prequel to Half-Blood (Covenant 0.5), Verland: The Transformation, Bloodletter, and Domingo’s Angel.

Playing with Fire

Evil is knowing better, but willingly doing worse. Philip Zimbardo 

Temptations. Who doesn’t have them? Some people feel an uncontrollable urge to devour a dozen Oreos at two o’clock in the morning, and in my home…mint, chocolate-chip ice cream vanishes all by itself, plus the desire for McDonald’s crispy, perfectly salted French fries can blow any diet into a dark abyss if the craving is not controlled. But, face it—none of these temptations, even if succumbed to, will result in anything too atrocious, other than tighter fitting jeans, which is bad enough.

Consider yourself quite fortunate if your temptations are simply a bit of overkill in the donut department, (guilty!) or your love of cars meant you spent too much on custom floor mats, because for Jake Cottrell, protagonist in The Twelfth Paladin, playing with fire…temptations of the wicked kind, may cost him his soul. Jake easily falls into a decadent realm filled with lust, murder, and revenge.

Check out the book trailer!  The Twelfth Paladin at YouTube

Also, heat up your summer with a little mischief of your own…enter the Goodreads Book Giveaway!  June 27-July 27 (2011)

The Twelfth Paladin from Melange Books

In The Twelfth Paladin, good against evil battles as angels, demons, and a temptress extraordinaire, named Rachel Darnell, vie for the soul of Jake Cottrell. Jake foolishly dares Hell to burn him. Hell agrees.

Scarred with angelfire by a rebellious angel, named Micah, Jake Cottrell is sanctioned to become the twelfth paladin in Micah’s supernatural unit of slayers. However, regret abounds as Micah is banished and ordered to protect what he now despises…a human he believes is unworthy of such an honor. Never fear, Jake is a seeker of mischief who soars on a blistering blacktop to escape the wrath of Hell while he transforms into the twelfth paladin. 

Excerpt from Chapter Two

Setup: Jake Cottrell and an old, high school buddy, Davis Travis, have gone to a local carnival in Clearview Oregon. Davis knows Jasmine well and asks her to do a reading for Jake…

Jasmine’s dark green eyes intensified making me feel vulnerable, like my skin was nothing more than clear, plastic wrap. Her crystal ball glowed bluer as pure white light shot out from the top of it. The warm light split up into thousands of hair-like strands, which proceeded to wrap themselves around my stinging flesh. A satisfying, but overwhelming aroma gobbled up the carnival smell once present.

I couldn’t speak, felt immobile in every physical aspect, yet my mind burned. Things about my ridiculous childhood appeared throughout my mind much like a movie. Tender moments shared with Tony were especially heartfelt to see, like the day he showed us our new home. After that, I remembered when my mother left us, and our life mirrored the underworld. Sadness just about asphyxiated me. Out of nowhere, the sorrow left as I relived the surreal accident at the Motocross Track. For a second, I was dead and descending into Hell.

At last, relief came to me as Jasmine released her hands from mine. As fast as a lightning bolt, the white light retracted back into her crystal ball. “My, my, Jake Cottrell,” she said while patting her lovely chest.

“What did you see? Am I going to win a lottery or something?” Standing up to leave, I acted like nothing had happened.

Jasmine came to me and then placed her delicate hand on my right shoulder. A half-smile disappeared when she leaned in to whisper, “Surely you will fall into darkness, before you willingly bathe in the glory of the light. All in due time, Jake Cottrell.”

Faster than Tony could empty a bottle of whiskey, goose bumps consumed my skin. “Stop it. How did you know I dreamed that?”

Inches from my face, Jasmine ran her black nails along my jaw. “You’ve been scarred with angelfire. Your right shoulder I believe? A war is going on, but you won’t accept you’re the twelfth one, will you?” She laughed, dancing about the tent looking more like a medieval witch than a modern-day carnival gypsy. “I hope you’re ready for the ride of your life…because it’s coming.” Jasmine spun around faster as the candles flared and her cackle grew more intense.

“Angelfire, ride of my life, and the twelfth what? Oh, forget it. You’re nuts. Come on, Davis!”

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A seeker of mischief, Jake ends up on a blistering blacktop headed straight for Hell where he must fight for everyone he loves and for his soul. Can he beat the odds and win? Find out in The Twelfth Paladin. Pick up your copy at Melange Books, and soon at Amazon, Borders, and Barnes&Noble, plus other outlets too.

Consider your temptations. What tactics have you’ve taken to keep them at bay? Mostly everyone who knows me…understands perfectly well if any kind of pastry is nearby, I’m going to confiscate it. I cannot resist baked goods, so I try (almost always) to avoid that section of a supermarket. Share your thoughts, ask a question, or leave your favorite strategy for beating temptations.

Thanks for visiting the Noracast!

The Twelfth Paladin: Jake Cottrell

Many moons have come and gone since I lasted posted, but I’ve been in Hell. Seriously…

Yes! I’ve spent the last few months with Jake Cottrell…the protagonist in The Twelfth Paladin, and let me tell you, he got himself into all kinds of trouble, but he’d have it no other way! Take a minute, or two, and get to know the reluctant hero behind the madness in my new supernatural/thriller, The Twelfth Paladin, coming soon from Melange Books.

Check out the book trailer… The Twelfth Paladin

Nora: So, Jake…thanks for taking time out of your busy life to visit the Noracast. I imagine this is pretty lame compared to your supernatural adventure, though, huh?

Jake: Hell, no! I can use a breather, although it will be a short one. It’s not like Micah gives us rookie paladins any time off. Wickedness would like that too much…

Nora: Yep, I totally get what you’re saying. Now, real quick, sum up what your story, The Twelfth Paladin, is about.

Jake: Okay, sure. This story involves an angel and demons, my father…Tony Cottrell, plus murder and mayhem get a stab at ruining my chance at redemption too. For better or worse, I’m the kind of guy who can never get enough smack-downs. You know…an amazing feeling of floating so high, a freaking rush like no other, that you need a smack from the hand of God to bring you down. Well, that’s what my buddies and I chase after in Clearview, Oregon, but those awesome smack-downs are found in the midst of dangerous situations, like racing, bungee jumping…oh, anything that gets the adrenaline pumping. Since walking on the dark side was hazardous to my health, naturally, I had to risk everything and dive deep into chaos. I actually dared Hell to burn me. Hell agreed.

Nora: Are you insane?

Jake: More than you know.

Nora: Uh-huh…yes, you are. Never mind that for now. What’s your connection to Davis Travers?

Jake: Oh, man, he’s one nasty fellow. Looks like an angel, speaks like a saint…and so rich he tossed temptations in front of me too good to resist! We go all the way back to high school. Just wait until your readers learn about his twisted acts of deceit. I hate that guy.

Nora: Sounds like it. And Rachel Darnell?

Jake: Hum, let me think for a second. She’s, um…too hot for words, really. Rachel is the epitome of Hell on earth, so freaking beautiful and treacherous. Yes, a bad combo, I know—yet, I had to have her.

Nora: Why is it wickedness desired you, was hungry for your soul?

Jake: Well, Nora, because I didn’t care one iota about my soul, and lived for the day. Every day was a party, an excuse to wreak havoc, wherever and whenever, the hell I wanted. Motocross, my buddies, and hanging out at this local bar, Zeke’s, were what I did best. Consequences for my actions? I never even considered them, until I made the biggest mistake of my life. Yeah, I hope to only pay for that during this lifetime. We shall see…

Nora: So, you’re a seeker of mischief?

Jake: Absolutely, love it.  It’s a wonder my dad, Tony…didn’t pack my bags and kick me out long ago. I guess he let me stay with him since my self-indulgent, totally useless mother, Elizabeth, left us both. I was like five years old. Okay, time for me go. I’ve a bad feeling.

Nora: Really?

Jake: Yes! Don’t you feel the heat-wave contaminated with mangled whispers of regret, and the smell of pestilence spoiling the air? Devils are everywhere.

Nora: Yikes! Well, then…get to it, and do what you do.

Jake: My pleasure.

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The Twelfth Paladin:

Scarred with angelfire by a rebellious angel named Micah, Jake Cottrell is sanctioned to become the twelfth paladin in Micah’s supernatural unit of slayers. However, regret abounds as Micah is banished from his command and ordered to protect what he now despises…a human he believes is unworthy of such an honor.

Jake slips far away from righteousness, outwardly proving Micah’s judgment, by replying to a wicked email from next@hell.net. Forever a seeker of mischief, Jake dares hell to burn him. Hell agrees. Davis Travers thickens the plot by introducing Jake to Rachel Darnell. A temptress extraordinaire, she erupts from Hell to steal Jake’s soul. After a steamy seduction from the dark side, Jake is left spellbound.

With his soul dangling between Heaven and Hell, Jake soars on a blistering blacktop to escape the wrath of Hell as he fights for redemption while transforming into the twelfth paladin. Feel the heat as you grab your precious soul and go for a virtual roller coaster ride into Hell and back.

TEMPTATIONS

As you can see, Jake has issues with temptations. What gets to you…something that you want to resist, but causes you frustration? Is it your favorite dessert, a desire to live life on the edge, a relentless need to buy things, or is a special person driving you crazy? For me…it’s those warm, glazed donuts screaming for me to devour them as I hurry past the bakery in Kroger. Oh, to be sure, I’m taking a few perfectly baked victims home tonight…

Thanks for visiting the Noracast! Questions or comments? Feel free to leave one below.