Tag Archives: witches

Blog Tour: Lluck by Tim Rayborn

Lluck | Tim Rayborn

Qwryk Tales #2

BANNER FB - Lluck

Release Date: December 26th, 2021

Buy Links:

Publisher | Amazon US | Amazon UK Barnes & Noble

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COVER - Lluck

Blurb

All Qwyrk wanted was a few winter days of rest of and relaxation in the small town of Knettles in Yorkshire, but of course, it all goes wrong immediately. She wants to spend time and with her young human friend, Jilly, but Jilly and her not-so-imaginary friend blip have just met a remarkable boy named Lluck, who seems to be able to bend events to his favor.

Lluck is on the run from some awful and obnoxious goblins. On top of that, Qwyrk meets a mysterious and beguiling woman, who’s also looking for the boy. And in the dark, something wants Lluck for itself, but why?

MEME1 - Lluck

Excerpt

“I’ll be dead in a few seconds… or worse.”

Still, he kept running, plowing through snowy lanes, stumbling more than once on wet cobblestones blanketed in a thin sheet of slippery ice and powder. His breathing was furious, his heart pounded, and he knew he was running out of time. He sprinted back out to a main street and worked his way through thronging crowds of holiday shoppers, trying to hide in their numbers.

“Blend in, shake them off!” But he knew his pursuers weren’t interested in these people; they were only after him. He ducked into another alleyway, sped for the exit on the other side, and almost crashed into a padlocked gate.

“No!” He slammed the bars with his fists.

They were near; he could smell them, like bad fast food and garbage, with a hint of cheap cologne. But he tried pulling on the lock, and sure enough, it came loose. He laughed and opened the gate. Dashing through, he shut it behind him and relocked it.

“Have fun with that, you knobs!”

He turned around and there they were: grotesque, lumpy goblin creatures with mottled grey skin, bulbous noses, and large, pointy ears. They were mostly bald, except for some wiry black curls under said ears. Their snarling grins revealed bared, off-white crooked teeth. Beady yellow eyes completed the horrific ensemble.

“Well, well, what ‘ave we got ‘ere?” the larger one grumbled.

“Looks like a lost waif in need of some assistance to get to where he’s goin’,” the other replied.

“I’m not going with you, you tossers!” he shouted, defiant. He raised his fists in front of him. They just laughed.

“You gonna take us on in a fist fight, little boy?” the big one mocked. “That oughta be entertaining. Maybe I’ll even let you get in a blow or two in before I mash your pretty face into the pavement!”

“Oh, I won’t fight you, you miserable troll! I’m just getting ready.”

“Ready for what, lambkin?” the smaller one sneered.

“For this!” He threw his open hands forward in one jerking motion, and at once, both fell on their behinds, slid on the ice, and smacked their heads on the stones. They groaned, but didn’t get back up. He stepped over them (well, on them really, just to make a point; he might have even dug his boot heels in a bit) and made his way back to the crowds.

Once on the main street, he looked around and saw the town hall in the distance, with its multitudes packed in to celebrate the holiday festivities.

“All those people milling about; you can lose them there. Then get the hell out of here and head south.”

He paused, took a deep breath, and ran again.

* * *

“I do love a good festive celebration!” Blip announced. Resembling a bipedal frog sporting a handlebar moustache and a proper Victorian-style mutton chop beard, he strolled along the pavement in his Regency riding boots, while swinging an ornate walking stick, every so often accidentally hitting a passerby and eliciting an astonished yelp. A red, woolen scarf wrapped snugly around his short, froggy neck completed the ensemble.

“I love it too! It’s so much grander than the one in Knettles,” Jilly Pleeth said in a hushed voice. She looked down at him, quite grateful that a magical two-foot creature who liked to expound on nineteenth-century philosophy couldn’t be seen or heard by anyone over the age of thirteen, give or take a bit. Of course, there were plenty of children about, a few of whom gasped and stared; but most ignored him, being far more fascinated by the lights of the Leeds Christmas market, the aromas of cinnamon, nutmeg, and chocolate, the sounds of carols and stall hawkers, and the general merriment of the season. It was all rather like one of those displays in a department store window, but larger, louder, and less garish.

“We’ll have to keep an eye on the time, though,” she continued. “I need to meet mum and dad back at the train station in about an hour. They’ll be done with their stupid real estate meeting and keen to get back home before it gets too dark.”

“Come, come, my dear, no need to be so reserved, at least not in this instance! It’s the holidays, and the day of your birth is also upon us—twelve years!—so just this once, it is entirely satisfactory that we kick up our proverbial heels and live a bit. The holiday market is splendidly arrayed in front of us, a fine old tradition that I am glad to see being kept alive. So, throw caution to the wind, and embrace the revelry!”

“Oh, it’s not that,” she whispered. “It’s just, since most people can’t see you, I look like I’m talking to myself, like I’m a bit mad.”

“Hm, well yes, I do suppose that could cause some to think that you are a suitable candidate for admission to Bedlam, but again, this is the time for inversions of the social order in a controlled way, don’t you know? The Feast of Fools! The Boy Bishop! Saturnalian silliness! So I say, let them think that you are singularly odd and be done with it! And other children can see me, so what does it matter?”

“Yeah, but they probably just think you’re one of Father Christmas’s elves, anyway,” she said with an impish grin.

“Do not mention that reprobate in my company!” Blip admonished. “You know very well that the Father Christmas affair is a bone of contention with me!”

“Are you ever going to tell me what happened between you two?” she asked.

“A gentleman does not duel and tell, I’m afraid.”

“You fought a duel with Father Christmas?”

About The Author

AUTHOR PIC - Lluck - Tim Rayborn

Tim Rayborn is a writer and internationally acclaimed musician. He plays dozens of unusual instruments that many people of have never heard of and often can’t pronounce, including medieval instrument reconstructions and folk instruments from Northern Europe, the Balkans, and the Middle East.

He has appeared on over forty recordings, and his wanderings and tours have taken him across the US, all over Europe, to Canada and Australia, and to such romantic locations as Marrakech, Istanbul, Renaissance chateaux, medieval churches, and high school gymnasiums.

On the writing side of things, Tim lived in England for nearly seven years and has a PhD from the University of Leeds. He has written books and magazine articles about music, the arts, history, and business. He currently lives amid many books, antique music reproduction devices (that is, CDs), and instruments, and with a demanding cat. He’s also rather enthusiastic about good wines, single-malt Scotch, and cooking excellent food.

Social Media

Website: https://www.timrayborn.com

Facebook Author Page): https://www.facebook.com/TimRaybornMusicandWriting

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Tim_Rayborn

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/rayborn.esoterica

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3160656.Tim_Rayborn

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Tim-Rayborn/e/B00DWY5J8E/

MEME2 - Lluck

Giveaway

Tim is giving away an Amazon gift card with this tour

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Release Tour: Of Tails and Mistletoe by Natalina Reis

Of Tails and Mistletoe | Natalina Reis

Of Magic and Scales #3.5

Of Tails and Mistletoe Banner

Release Date: October 22nd, 2021

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of tails and mistletoe_ideas

Blurb

In this Christmas novella in the Of Magic & Scales series, the usual cast of zany but lovable characters is back to love and to hold the clueless groom on his way to married bliss. With or without the mistletoe.

Aiden Mercer is about to become Naël Fouchard’s husband. Their Christmas wedding is all the ex-detective can think of now that his life has settled into a comfortable routine and no one is threatening his life or that of those he loves.

But whose bright idea was it to put him in charge of finding a venue for the wedding? Or to give him a case of mertail-napping to solve?

OT_M 2 note to self

Excerpt

“Earth to Major Aiden.” Taz, all red hair and crazy sunglasses, stood before me, half bent so her face was smack in front of mine, her scarlet lips puckered in mock worry. “Geez, Aiden, where the hell did you go for the past few minutes?”

Bringing my mind back to reality from wherever it had gone, I flattened my hand on her face and pushed her away from me. “Stay away, witch. I forgot my garlic.”

She slapped my hand away and frowned, straightening the sunglasses on her nose and rubbing her lips together. “Fuck! I’m not a vampire, idiot. Now you smudged my lipstick.”

“Serves you right for not respecting my personal space.” I sounded like a child even to my own ears. I had been so preoccupied with figuring out where to hold our wedding, I had been a pain in everybody’s ass—including my own. “Be a good witch and get me a bica, will you?”

Before the witch could explode—and she most certainly would—my soul mate came to her rescue with two cups of hot espresso and a truffle.

“No need to kill each other,” he said in that sexy voice of his. “Remember, it’s Christmastime , a time for tolerance and goodwill to men—and women,” he rushed to add before Taz took exception. “But in our case, goodwill to this man in particular.” He wagged his eyebrows in a very Marx Brothers’ way and I had to laugh. My usually stern and cantankerous merman could be very funny sometimes.

I pulled him against my side and squeezed his delicious ass. “Oh, I will most definitely show you a boatload of goodwill later, my sweet merrow.” He chuckled and bent down to kiss the top of my head. “I just can’t come up with an idea for a wedding venue that doesn’t reek of bad memories. It’s driving me nuts.”

“You mean nuttier, right?” Taz interjected, daintily sticking out her pinky finger as she took the coffee to her lips. “Because you are already a nut.”

I gave her the stink eye and then took a swig of the hot coffee. “What do you think of the Capuchos Convent? We could have the ceremony out in the courtyard at night.” We had had such great moments together in that place, it made sense to hold it there.

“That’s a great idea,” my man said, glancing at the clock on the wall, a beautiful kitschy thing I had recently purchased from a local store. “Shit. I promised Vee I would be there for the first rehearsal. Can you check it out for me, sweetheart?”

Disappointment must have been obvious on my face because Taz leaned forward over the table and said, “Oh, don’t be so sad, Aiden. I’ll go with you.”

I snorted. “Like I need your company.” But I did. I hadn’t been to the convent since Fouchard had surprised me with a private birthday celebration in the fall. I hated to go there without my lover. Then, there was my dad, my druid-monk father who lived a humble life in the convent. I wondered what my mom thought about that. And did I want to see him again so soon? I had forgiven him for abandoning me as a babe, but there was still some anger inside me. “What time do you want to go?” I might as well give in.

OT_M 4 my merman

Catch the rest of the series

Of Magic & Scales: Universal Link

Of Scales & Fire: Universal Link

Of Fire & Bone: Universal Link

About The Author

natalina-reis

Natalina wrote her first romance in collaboration with her best friend at the age of 13. Since then she has ventured into other genres, but romance is first and foremost in almost everything she writes.

After earning a degree in tourism and foreign languages, she worked as a tourist guide in her native Portugal for a short time before moving to the United States. She lived in three continents and a few islands, and her knack for languages and linguistics led her to a master’s degree in education. She lives in Virginia where she has taught English as a Second Language to elementary school children for more years than she cares to admit.

Natalina doesn’t believe you can have too many books or too much coffee. Art and dance make her happy and she is pretty sure she could survive on lobster and bananas alone. When she is not writing or stressing over lesson plans, she shares her life with her husband and two adult sons.

Social Media

Website: https://natalinareis.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authornatalinareis

Twitter: https://twitter.com/TichaB

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14883335.Natalina_Reis

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Natalina-Reis/e/B01ADQ9FJW

Newsletter sign up: https://natalinareis.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/reisnatalina/

Reader’s Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/215263965917134/

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/natalina-reis

AllAuthor: https://allauthor.com/author/natalinareis/

Giveaway

To celebrate the release Of Tails and Mistletoe, Natalia is giving a lucky winner the chance to win an $10 Amazon Voucher

A Rafflecopter Giveaway

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Blog Tour: To Bring Him Home by Warren Rochelle

To Bring Him Home | Warren Rochelle

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Release Date: September 11th, 2021

Publisher: JMS Books

Cover Artist: JMS Books

Word Count: 94,900

Buy Links:

Publisher | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

COVER - To Bring Him Home

Blurb

We all need a place to call home, a place where we belong, and are safe, and loved. For the lovers in these stories, finding home is easier said than done.

Quests must be taken; dragons must be slain. Rocket launchers need to be dodged. Sometimes one might have to outrun the Wild Hunt, and sometimes they have to reimagine and recreate home.

But these lovers do find homes, homes in each other’s hearts.

BANNER2 - To Bring Him Home

Excerpt

He found his mother in her bathroom, lying on the bathmat by the tub, like a discarded hotel towel, white and crumpled. Fletcher knelt down and touched her bruised face, tenderly traced the hand prints on her skin. Cold. He then pressed his fingers against the veins in her neck. No pulse. Wishing he could cry for her, he put the same fingers under her nose. No breath, Dead. Emptied. He picked up her arm and it flopped as if boneless, She was wearing her bathrobe. He pulled it close, to hide her body.

Fletcher knew where to look, upstairs, behind the locked attic door. Through the door he could hear what he had come to call Paul’s favorite music, soft, far away, with harps and wind chimes, and what sounded like the wind, and the rain, storms. and voices singing in a strange language he had never been able to identify. The music sort of reminded him of the wind chimes on Sam’s porch. Of course.

He tried the knob. This time the door was unlocked.

“Fletcher. You’re awake. I knew you’d come up here,” his stepfather said in his cold and dark voice. He sat at a desk facing a door frame standing in the middle of the attic. Inside the door frame: darkness. Around it, Fletcher could see the rest of the attic: the shelves, the file cabinets, the odd boxes. The skylight was open, mid-day sun streamed in. Even so, the room was cold, a cold that was coming through the door, as if blown by some faraway wind. Paul’s black staff leaned against the door frame. He closed a little carved box on his desk and the music stopped.

“What did you do with Sam? Where is he? Where are his parents?” Fletcher asked, shivering and hugging himself against the cold.

“Where they belong,” Paul said, leaning back in his chair. “The dreams have escaped for millennia—even before Her Majesty came to power—into human minds. Fairy tales, myths, story upon story. A few times, the different peoples and creatures slipped through—what was it your hero said?—‘there were many chinks or chasms between worlds in old times’?—yes, I’ve read all those stories, too; they were useful to me. That was before Her Majesty. So, there are people like you and your mother, fey-touched, gifted with Sight that lets you see through glamour. Very useful to people like me.”

Fletcher swallowed the scream in his throat, knowing he had to listen, to understand, not to let this man get to him, break him into tears. “Where is Sam? What kind of a person are you?”

“I told you: There. You can call it Narnia if you like, or what did Tolkien call it? Never mind. The Celts came up with many other names, such as Tir n’Og, the Blessed Isles. Words and sounds can be dreamt, too; echoes can linger. She can’t stop the dreams of what once was, of once upon a time—slow them down, but not stop them. But Her Majesty can and must stop those who escape her winter,” Paul said, as he sorted what looked like rolls of parchment, stuffing some back into tubes, into different parts of his desk. “I am a bounty hunter, a tracker, and you, my dear Fletcher, and your mother, are my canaries.”

My dreams. I dreamed of the neighbor, I dreamed of Sam. Now I know where his music comes from.

“They hadn’t planned on Sam falling in love and having sex quite just yet, which shattered the weak child’s glamour—and I smelled him on you, his magic,” Paul said, his words dripping disdain and scorn.

“Mama’s dead.”

Paul shrugged and Fletcher hated him for it. “I needed her energy to open the gate—I was running a little low. A few days from now, no problem. You want him back?”

Fletcher slowly and carefully nodded his head.

“You think you’re in love. Fletcher! What do you know about love—who have you ever loved or who’s loved you? And when he asked for you, at the moment of peril, you pulled back. Don’t be a fool: you’re not in love.”

“My father loved me; I loved him. My mother—before you used her for food. Sam loves me.”

“Then go get him. Into Faerie. No happy elves, no dancing fauns, no chatty mice, no heroes with magic swords. No performing Lion, just Her Majesty’s winter. No English children. Your boyfriend’s there, Fletcher. Or you could stay here and help me—starting with finding that sanctuary. Do you know how old I am? Her Majesty rewards her faithful: I am two hundred and thirteen of your years old. I have anything I want.”

I want Sam. “Live that long, be like you? No. I love Sam.”

“You’ve known him a week and you’re in love. That really is a fairy tale. You just think you do,” Paul said, dismissing Fletcher’s feelings with a flip of his hand. “You can have any boy you want, any way you want—like I said, Her Majesty rewards her faithful. Besides, you’re a coward,” Paul added, laughing.

Fletcher knew that Paul would never understand, could never understand, that even the uncertainty was enough, that the brightness in his heart, the geodes in his pocket, were enough, even if the week had been just the promise of what would come. Could have come. Might come. Maybe he was a coward. He certainly was afraid, and very good at being afraid. But life had found him, and being afraid didn’t mean he couldn’t go through that dark gate.

“Find yourself another canary,” Fletcher said and before Paul could stop him, ran across the room, through the door frame, into the dark, into the fairy tale.

MEME1 - To Bring Him Home

About The Author

Warren RochelleWarren Rochelle lives in Charlottesville, Virginia, and has just retired from teaching English at the University of Mary Washington. His short fiction and poetry have been published in such journals and anthologies as Icarus, North Carolina Literary Review, Forbidden Lines, Aboriginal Science Fiction, Collective Fallout, Queer Fish 2, Empty Oaks, Quantum Fairy Tales, Migration, The Silver Gryphon, Jaelle Her Book, Colonnades, and Graffiti, as well as the Asheville Poetry Review, GW Magazine, Crucible, The Charlotte Poetry Review, Romance and Beyond, Migration, and Innovation.

Rochelle is the author of four novels: The Wild Boy (2001), Harvest of Changelings (2007), and The Called (2010), all published by Golden Gryphon Press, and The Werewolf and His Boy, published by Samhain Publishing in September 2016.

The Werewolf and His Boy was re-released from JMS Books in August 2020. His first short story collection, The Wicked Stepbrother and Other Stories, was published by JMS Books in September 2020.

Both The Werewolf and His Boy and The Wicked Stepbrother and Other Stories, received strong reviews from blog tours in November 2020.

Social Media

Facebook (Personal): https://www.facebook.com/warren.rochelle

Facebook (Author Page): https://www.facebook.com/warrenwriter

Twitter: https://twitter.com/WarrenRochelle

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/38355.Warren_Rochelle

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Giveaway

Warren is giving away an Amazon gift card with this tour:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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