Archive for category Book Spotlight

#Spotlight on “A Most Unfortunate Prince” by Kelli A. Wilkins

Author Kelli A. Wilkins is back with us guest-blogging more about her historical/fantasy romance series, Royal Desires, on Nesie’s Place today! Don’t forget to check out her links!

Spotlight on… A Most Unfortunate Prince

By Kelli A. Wilkins

AMUP LrgHi everyone,

Today I’m sharing an inside look at the making of A Most Unfortunate Prince. This book is the third story in the Royal Desires trilogy that began with A Most Unusual Princess and A Most Intriguing Temptation. Together, they make up a fun series, but each story stands alone as a separate read.

When I wrote A Most Intriguing Temptation, I introduced readers to Prince Allan. He’s basically the male version of his sister, Princess Elara—hedonistic, selfish, and utterly wild at times. I enjoyed creating the character and it was fun to set him free in a pleasure palace completely without limitations. As I was finishing A Most Intriguing Temptation, I realized Allan needed a book of his own, so I wrote A Most Unfortunate Prince. (Several readers also asked me if Allan’s story would be told, and I was happy to oblige!)

But before I wrote a word, I knew that Allan was going to have to face the music for his bad behavior. At the start of the book (yes, right there on page 1) Allan is banished for his actions stemming from A Most Intriguing Temptation. His royal father kicks him out into the real world alone and broke, and he’s forced to make his own way in life.

I decided to take this carefree, roguish prince and turn his world upside down. I asked myself: How bad can you make things for him? He has nothing: no food, no fancy clothes, certainly no job skills, and no real sense of identity. He has lived a pampered life where everything was handed to him on a silver platter (literally), and now he was in for a rude awakening. I really put the screws to poor Allan and at times left him broken, sad, and utterly miserable.

Over the course of the book, Allan suffers life’s lessons at the hands of his evil employer and falls in love—twice. The story introduces us to Claudette, a sassy seamstress who fancies Allan and helps him adjust to the life of a commoner. Although Claudette appears innocent, she has a secret past and a bit of a naughty side.

Although A Most Unfortunate Prince has a happy ending, it is a little bit darker than the other two books in the series. I wanted to contrast Allan’s former easy-going pampered life with his current harsh and gritty existence. (And it broke my heart to kill off a secondary character that I utterly adored.) Readers may also be surprised to discover a few things about Allan, as well. (Even I was shocked when certain events in the story took place—and I was the one writing it!)

Allan’s “fall from grace” and the journey of self-discovery that he undergoes are some of the reasons I love this book. It has something for everyone: hot love scenes, tender moments, mystery, adventure, and suspense.

But what about Dalton and Elara (from A Most Unusual Princess and A Most Intriguing Temptation)? They’re in the book too, as minor characters. Elara and Dalton play important roles in the finale of the story, and we get to see how these lovebirds are adapting to their married life. (Again, there’s a secret I don’t want to give away!) I can tell you that this book wraps up the trilogy in a neat package and everyone is left in a good place. (Links to the trilogy are at the end of the post.)

I hope you’ll check out the series. It’s a great read and filled with lively and unique characters.

Happy Reading!

Kelli A. Wilkins

Here’s the book summary and a tame excerpt.

A Most Unfortunate Prince

This time, it’s all about Allan… and he never expected to fall in love!

Banished by the Royal Family, pampered Prince Allan is forced to abandon his life of luxury. The former Royal Shipmaster General is sent to the worst part of the kingdom and manages to find work at the docks. Lost in a commoner’s world, Allan is miserable—until he has an unusual encounter with a saucy shop girl named Claudette.

Allan must earn the respect of the woman he loves while keeping his true identity a secret. In AMUP Lrgan effort to redeem himself in his father’s eyes, he exposes a dangerous smuggling operation involving the Royal Fleet. But his loyalty to duty comes with a deadly price.

Can he keep Claudette and his royal title? Or will he lose her forever when she discovers his secret?

 ~~~

Excerpt:

Claudette squealed and Allan drew her to him, crushing her against his chest. They were crammed into the wardrobe so close that Allan’s hot breath tickled her face. He draped her arms around his neck, then settled his hands on her waist. At first, she tried to protest, but then gave in when she realized her knees were shaking. Allan was here for her, holding her up.

“Shh, don’t make a sound, no matter what. I won’t let them hurt you,” he whispered.

She closed her eyes and rested her head on Allan’s shoulder. Thank heavens he was here. A second later, she heard the man rifling through drawers and cupboards, knocking cleaning supplies and her sewing aside. How did these men get in? What did they want?

Allan tightened his grip on her waist. Was he scared? Did men ever get scared?

“Bloody hell, where is it?” the man growled, and hit the side of the wardrobe.

Her heart skipped a beat and she took a breath to scream. As she did, Allan’s mouth closed over hers. She squirmed against him, then gave in as her body responded with a will of its own.

Her skin tingled as she kissed him, her lips eagerly seeking his. How long had it been since she’d kissed someone? She opened her mouth wider and drew Allan’s thick tongue in. He clutched her tighter as she twirled her tongue around his.

All thoughts of the intruders vanished from her mind as Allan yanked her lower body closer to his. His hot tongue teased hers and he slid his hands off her waist and cupped her buttocks…

The Royal Desires series is available on Amazon & other platforms. Catch this hot historical/fantasy trilogy from the start:

Book 1, A Most Unusual Princess, here:

A Most Unsual Princess

Amazon

All other platforms

Book 2, A Most Intriguing Temptation here:

A Most Intriguing Temptation

Amazon

All other platforms

 

Book 3, A Most Unfortunate Prince

A Most Unfortunate prince

Amazon

All other platforms

I hope you’ll check out the series! Although the books are connected, each stands alone as an individual story.

Happy Reading,

Kelli A. Wilkins

 

Kelli WilkinsABOUT THE AUTHOR

Kelli A. Wilkins is an award-winning author who has published more than 100 short stories, 19 romance novels, and 5 non-fiction books. Her romances span many genres and heat levels, and she’s also been known to scare readers with her horror stories.

In August 2018, Kelli released her first online course through Teachable. Fiction Writing for Beginners is perfect for anyone who wants to learn how to write. Visit the course page: https://kelliwilkins.teachable.com/ for more details.

Kelli’s historical romance, Redemption from a Dark Past, was published in 2018. This full-length Gothic novel is set in the kingdom of Hungary in 1723 and blends a sensual romance with mystery and suspense.

If you like horror fiction, don’t miss her latest novella, Nightmare in the North.

Kelli posts on her Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKelliWilkins and Twitter: www.Twitter.com/KWilkinsauthor.

Visit her website www.KelliWilkins.com and blog http://kelliwilkinsauthor.blogspot.com/ to learn more about all of her writings.

 

CATCH UP WITH KELLI

Here’s a full list of where you can find Kelli on the web.

Website: http://www.KelliWilkins.com

Blog: http://kelliwilkinsauthor.blogspot.com/

Amazon Author Page: www.amazon.com/author/kelliwilkins

Twitter: www.Twitter.com/KWilkinsauthor

Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKelliWilkins

Facebook Historical Romances: https://www.facebook.com/Historical-Romances-by-Kelli-A-Wilkins-1703805359922371/

Facebook Contemporary Romances: https://www.facebook.com/Contemporary-Romances-by-Kelli-A-Wilkins-1965702023664339/

Facebook Gay Romances: https://www.facebook.com/GayRomancesbyKelliAWilkins/

FREE READS: http://www.manicreaders.com/KelliAWilkins/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kelliwilkins2/

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/kelli-a-wilkins

Books2Read: https://www.books2read.com/ap/nkvddR/Kelli-A-Wilkins

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/KWilkinsAuthor/

Newsletter sign-up: http://eepurl.com/HVQqb

Teachable Online Writing Course: https://kelliwilkins.teachable.com/

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#Spotlight on “A Most Intriguing Temptation” by Kelli A. Wilkins

Author Kelli A. Wilkins is back with us guest-blogging more about her historical/fantasy romance series, Royal Desires, on Nesie’s Place today! Don’t forget to check out her links!

Spotlight on… A Most Intriguing Temptation

By Kelli A. Wilkins

AMIT LrgHi everyone,

Today I’m sharing an inside look and spotlighting the making of my historical/fantasy romance, A Most Intriguing Temptation. This book is the second story in the Royal Desires trilogy that began with A Most Unusual Princess and ends with A Most Unfortunate Prince. Together, they make up a fun series, but each story stands alone as a separate read. Why? Because when I wrote A Most Unusual Princess, I never knew I was writing a trilogy.

A Most Intriguing Temptation focuses on the theme of fidelity. Our headstrong Princess Elara wants to test Dalton’s loyalty, so she masquerades as Oonish, a sultry kharim girl in a pleasure palace. She teases and tempts Dalton at every turn and thinks her game is all in fun—until she gets in over her head and lands in big trouble.

I enjoyed taking Elara out of her element and giving her new experiences. I also got to show a different side to Dalton’s character as he (and readers) learn about his weaknesses and desires. He loves Elara, and yet, Oonish is tempting… This unique storyline was an interesting way to showcase Dalton and Elara’s relationship, discuss their views on trust, and see how they interact and respond to challenges in their lives.

A Most Intriguing Temptation was fun to write. It has a little bit of everything: adventure, humor, sizzling love scenes, an element of danger, and even a drop of sadness. This book also introduces readers to Elara’s charming, wiseass “bad-boy” brother, Prince Allan.

When readers ask me if I ever have characters who want to “run away” with a story, I always point to Allan. By the end of A Most Intriguing Temptation, I knew Allan needed his own story, and so A Most Unfortunate Prince was born! I’ll be sharing more about him in my next blog.

Here’s the book summary and a brief excerpt:

 

A Most Intriguing Temptation

 After only four months of marriage to Princess Elara, Prince Dalton is sent to Emperor Salizar’s pleasure palace on business. Not wanting to be left behind, Elara risks her personal safety and sneaks along on the trip.

Aided by her mischievous brother, Prince Allan, she disguises herself as one of Salizar’s sultry AMIT Lrgkharim women and decides to test Dalton’s loyalty. Masquerading as Oonish, Elara goes out of her way to tempt Dalton at every turn. Despite Dalton’s resolve to resist the indulgent girls, he finds himself falling under the spell of the mysterious Oonish.

After nearly giving in to temptation, Dalton discovers Elara’s trickery and turns the tables on her, making her into his submissive playmate. Their fun and games are quickly shattered when Emperor Salizar learns about Elara’s deception. He holds the royals prisoner and condemns Elara to a fate worse than death.

Can Dalton save Elara before it’s too late, or will her prank bring about the end of their love?


Bonus! This e-book includes a sneak peek at the third book in the “Royal Desires” series: A Most Unfortunate Prince.

The Excerpt:

Elara dipped the soap into the water and lathered Dalton’s wide back. She took her time and trailed her hands over his hard muscles. She loved stroking his thick chest and broad shoulders after lovemaking. Sometimes just looking at his nude body made her eager for him.

“You are very strong, Your Highness, with many big muscles.”

He chuckled. “I train hard to stay in good condition.”

She massaged his back. “I shall give you a good rub. It will drain the tension out of you and make you feel good.” She kneaded a knot in his neck, and he moaned.

“That feels good. You have very skilled hands.”

“All the better to give you pleasures. You’re so stiff.” She started lathering his chest.

He groaned and leaned back against her.

If she got him to relax, she could work her magic on him. “I am happy you kept me, Your Highness. I promise not to disappoint you. I will make your stay here most pleasurable,” she said as she trailed her soapy hand across his flat stomach.

“I’m sure you can, Oonish. I have no doubt of that,” he replied, chuckling.

“Whenever you would like to look, merely ask.” Little by little, she was breaking through his defenses. As she went to re-lather her hands, the soap slid out of her grip and disappeared under the water. “Oh, I’ll get that.”

She reached around Dalton’s hip and slipped her hand between his legs. Her fingers grazed his penis and she gasped. He was hard. “My word! Are you still so inflamed from Dashuri’s dance?”

“Nay, that faded. It’s the warm water. It stirs me.”

“I knew you wished to keep me for your pleasures,” she whispered as she closed her hand around him…

***

Order A Most Intriguing Temptation here:

A Most Intriguing Temptation

Amazon

All other platforms

Catch up on Book 1, A Most Unusual Princess, here:

A Most Unsual Princess

Amazon

All other platforms

 

Don’t miss Book 3, A Most Unfortunate Prince

A Most Unfortunate prince

Amazon

All other platforms

I hope you’ll check out the series! Although the books are connected, each stands alone as an individual story.

Happy Reading,

Kelli A. Wilkins

 

Kelli WilkinsABOUT THE AUTHOR

Kelli A. Wilkins is an award-winning author who has published more than 100 short stories, 19 romance novels, and 5 non-fiction books. Her romances span many genres and heat levels, and she’s also been known to scare readers with her horror stories.

In August 2018, Kelli released her first online course through Teachable. Fiction Writing for Beginners is perfect for anyone who wants to learn how to write. Visit the course page: https://kelliwilkins.teachable.com/ for more details.

Kelli’s historical romance, Redemption from a Dark Past, was published in 2018. This full-length Gothic novel is set in the kingdom of Hungary in 1723 and blends a sensual romance with mystery and suspense.

If you like horror fiction, don’t miss her latest novella, Nightmare in the North.

Kelli posts on her Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKelliWilkins and Twitter: www.Twitter.com/KWilkinsauthor.

Visit her website www.KelliWilkins.com and blog http://kelliwilkinsauthor.blogspot.com/ to learn more about all of her writings.

 

CATCH UP WITH KELLI

Here’s a full list of where you can find Kelli on the web.

Website: http://www.KelliWilkins.com

Blog: http://kelliwilkinsauthor.blogspot.com/

Amazon Author Page: www.amazon.com/author/kelliwilkins

Twitter: www.Twitter.com/KWilkinsauthor

Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKelliWilkins

Facebook Historical Romances: https://www.facebook.com/Historical-Romances-by-Kelli-A-Wilkins-1703805359922371/

Facebook Contemporary Romances: https://www.facebook.com/Contemporary-Romances-by-Kelli-A-Wilkins-1965702023664339/

Facebook Gay Romances: https://www.facebook.com/GayRomancesbyKelliAWilkins/

FREE READS: http://www.manicreaders.com/KelliAWilkins/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kelliwilkins2/

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/kelli-a-wilkins

Books2Read: https://www.books2read.com/ap/nkvddR/Kelli-A-Wilkins

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/KWilkinsAuthor/

Newsletter sign-up: http://eepurl.com/HVQqb

Teachable Online Writing Course: https://kelliwilkins.teachable.com/

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#Spotlight “Sacred Amulet Duet” by Kiru Taye

 

Title: Outcast & Sacrifice
Series: Sacred Amulet Duet
Author: Kiru Taye
Genre: Paranormal /
Fantasy / Romance
OUTCAST (Sacred Amulet, Part 1)
Ugo’ji is an outcast, an untouchable. She lives on the fringe of society as the lowest of the low, a living sacrifice to the gods. The only person she interacts with is her aged grandmother who nurtures her powerful gift of healing. Until the day she meets Ebube a strange warrior to their lands. He ignites a yearning
within her she’s unable to ignore.
Ebube is drawn to the young maiden with the emerald green eyes who possesses the body of a goddess and the healing touch of an angel. But he is forbidden from mating with a human and the consequence is the wrath of the gods.
Moreover he is on a mission. If he fails, the gates of hell will be opened and the earth plunged into darkness. He cannot stay and she cannot go with him.
EXCERPT
A twig snapped. Ebube froze for a heartbeat. Unsure of what was approaching, he
reached for his scabbard still strapped to his hips.  Without making a noise, he withdrew the
dagger in a slow fluid motion. The trees and shrubs around him provided some
cover for him. He wouldn’t be seen until he was ready to attack.
Footsteps walked in his direction. Human? Knife poised to strike, he manoeuvred his
aching body into a crouching position.
As the leaves of the shrubs in front of him parted, he swung his leg out tripping
the creature. The person tumbled down onto the ground beside him and he
pounced, his dagger already on its downward motion.
Then he froze.
It was a young woman.
“No!”
Her scream rent the air as his arm stopped mid-swing. His grip on his weapon
tightened. His other hand held her side down firmly. Soft, smooth, warm skin
trembled beneath his palm.
He stared at her, fixated by her allure. The shape of her face reminded him of an
eagle’s egg, beautiful and fragile, full of inner strength. Eyes the vibrant
green of okra twirled in the cream of ukwa stared back at him with fright. They
held him captive and he fell into their depths, barely aware of his increased
breathing and heart rate.
Mine.
For the first time today, his spirit beast roused, alert and pushing to get to
the fore.
What?
The feral creature living in him had just laid claim to the maiden which made
her…  Mine. The word whispered again in his mind.
This girl was his bond mate? The woman destined to be his life partner? This
couldn’t be. She was human. Her life force undulated beneath his skin as proof.
He was Ure, part human and part god. A supernatural being. He wasn’t permitted to
bond with humans.
But his spirit beast had never risen before without the amulet to connect them. Yet
it had done so on this occasion.


BOOK LINKS
Barnes & Noble: https://goo.gl/DhFpgf

 

Add to Goodreads: https://goo.gl/A9TVoi
SACRIFICE (Sacred Amulet, Part 2)
Mating an outcast requires a blood sacrifice.
Ebube has rejoined his warriors on the hunt for the sacred amulet but his heart is left behind with Ugo. He’s focused on completing his task and returning to her quickly.
Ugo has found a new confidence since Ebube’s departure. After saving a child’s
life, she is now in demand for her skills and those who had previously ignored
her now take an interest in her. Her quiet moments are preoccupied by thoughts of Ebube’s return.
But the gods are not so forgiving or forgetful and they will demand a high price for Ebube’s and Ugo’s disobedience.
EXCERPT
Ebube’s favourite dream involved waking with Ugo beside him in his home on the Amauwa
settlement.
There they had a good, simple, and happy life. Peace in the realms and the warriors
at home.
She placed a kiss to his face, the tip of his nose and his closed eyelid before
whispering, “good morning.”
Half befuddled with sleep he reached for her, hand settling on her hip as he
struggled to stay still, needing her in ways that he couldn’t always express.
“The morning is good because you are here,” he replied in a voice still gruff from
the night.
“You are awake,” her voice was filled with amusement.
“I am now.” He cracked his eyes open and filled them with a vision of Ugo dappled
in dawn’s grey light.
A smile played on her lips even as strands of her braided hair brushed over her
shoulders and plump breasts.
He trailed his hand down her smooth back over the curve of her waist to her wide hips
and pliant buttocks swell over long legs that he now pulled down on either side
of his so that she sat astride of him.
In the time that he’d known her, her body had ripened from that of a girl into a
woman.
He had always been a man ready to go to war to protect the realms. Ready to put
himself in danger and journey to whatever lands his missions took him.
Now he wanted to stay close to Ugo. To have her as a constant in his life. He
couldn’t imagine a future without her. A mate to share highs and lows and make
family.
“Now that you’re awake, my warrior, what would you like?” She rolled her bum over
his groin.
His breath hitched as he hardened.
“Precious,” the endearment was hardly more than a groan on his lips.
She had never been this bold before.
He glanced up to find her smirking as she rolled her hips again. “Yes, my warrior.
I have exactly what you want.”
BOOK LINKS
Add
to Goodreads:
https://goo.gl/kMtz6r
 
 
CONNECT WITH KIRU

 

GIVEAWAY
Kiru is giving away $10/£10 Paypal Gift or N3000 Okadabooks Credit.

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Women Writers… writing | J. Helen Elza

J Helen ElzaJ. Helen Elza grew up second oldest in a rowdy household with seven brothers and two sisters in Hurst, Texas, a Dallas suburb, where, early on, books became Elza’s best friends. Her love for reading and writing never diminished and, in 1972, a chance encounter with a stranger redirected the course of her life and birthed Elza’s dreams of becoming a novelist.

She became an American best-selling author with Rosemillion, book I of The Appalachian Trilogy. Readers comment that Elza’s portrayal of Appalachia and its people from the early 50s to the mid-70s is so real, they can smell the biscuits baking and feel the weight of the beautiful handmade quilts.

Elza experienced the amazing people from the Kentucky and West Virginia Mountains of Appalachia throughout her thirty-year marriage to a man from “W” Hollow, Greenup, Kentucky. He and his family were neighbors to the beloved novelist and poet laureate of Kentucky, Jesse Stuart, who mentions them in his books.

Elza writes and people watches full -time from the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains in East Tennessee where she lives with her family, three dogs, a visiting raccoon, and a variety of other woodland critters.

In her own words, “I love what I’m doing and I’m doing what I love.” She appreciates each and every reader and always looks forward to meeting new friends.

Website     |     Facebook     |     Twitter

 

Check out:

“Hard Mountain: Book III of the Appalachian TrilogyHard Mountain Cover

Genre: Historical/Romance/Saga

Release Date: July 25, 2017

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“Family is the most important thing in the world.” Diana, Princess of Wales

Amazon’s #1 best-selling author of Rosemillion, J. Helen Elza, has captivated hearts worldwide with her first romantic saga, The Appalachian Trilogy. In the author’s own words, “I work to give my readers more than good books they can read, I work to give them unforgettable narratives they can feel.”

To followers and newcomers alike, the author guarantees, “You will feel Hard Mountain.” This emotional epic of trials and tragedy will rip at your heartstrings. With more twists and turns than West Virginia’s US Route 33, Hard Mountain keeps readers guessing beyond the shocking betrayals that rock Widows Hollow and that put the importance of family to the ultimate test.

It is 1975, vandals plague Rose’s S&S Ranch. While portents and nightmares add to the horrors, The Train Man returns. He knows trespassers have become a greater menace to Rose and Jan than the accident that has crippled them, a threat that possesses the power to steal their dreams-if not their lives.

And to The Train Man, Quayle Johnson’s, mind, Rose and Jan are more than friends. They are family.

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“The Crims (Crime Runs in the Family)” by Kate Davies #BookSpotlight


The Crims cover

“The Crims (Crime Runs in the Family)”

Genre: Family Life/Multi-generational/Detectives/Humor
Release Date: December 12, 2017
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The Addams Family meets Despicable Me in the first book of this new trilogy, perfect for fans of Lemony Snicket and Pseudonymous Bosch!

The Crim family is full of notorious criminals. Notoriously inept, that is. Uncle Knuckles once tried to steal a carnival. Great-Uncle Bernard held himself hostage by accident. Aunt Drusilla died slipping on a banana peel. But Imogen is different. She was born with a skill for scandal. A knack for the nefarious. A mastery of misdemeanors.

Despite her natural talent for all things unlawful, Imogen got out of the family business years ago. But when the rest of the Crims are accused of pulling off a major heist—which seems doubtful, to say the least—Imogen is forced to step in to clear their names. Because only a truly skilled criminal can prove the bumbling family’s innocence….


About the Author

Kate Davies lives in London, where she writes children’s books, performs improv comedy, and spends too much money on cheese. She also edits other people’s children’s books and she once worked at Buckingham Palace, selling tea towels to tourists. She never met the queen, but she did get to stroke a corgi once.

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“All the Gallant Men” by Donald Stratton


All the Gallant Men cover

“All the Gallant Men: An American Sailor’s Firsthand Account of Pearl Harbor

 
Genre: Biographies & Memoirs/Military & War
 
Release Date: November 22, 2016

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THE FIRST MEMOIR BY A USS ARIZONA SURVIVOR: Donald Stratton, one of the battleship’s five living heroes, delivers a “powerful” and “intimate”* eyewitness account of Pearl Harbor and his unforgettable return to the fight

At 8:10 a.m. on December 7, 1941, Seaman First Class Donald Stratton was consumed by an inferno. A million pounds of explosives had detonated beneath his battle station aboard the USS Arizona, barely fifteen minutes into Japan’s surprise attack on American forces at Pearl Harbor. Near death and burned across two-thirds of his body, Don, a nineteen-year-old Nebraskan who had been steeled by the Great Depression and Dust Bowl, summoned the will to haul himself hand over hand across a rope tethered to a neighboring vessel. Forty-five feet below, the harbor’s flaming, oil-slick water boiled with enemy bullets; all around him the world tore itself apart.

In this extraordinary, never-before-told eyewitness account of the Pearl Harbor attack—the only memoir ever written by a survivor of the USS Arizona—ninety-four-year-old veteran Donald Stratton finally shares his unforgettable personal tale of bravery and survival on December 7, 1941, his harrowing recovery, and his inspiring determination to return to the fight.

Don and four other sailors made it safely across the same line that morning, a small miracle on a day that claimed the lives of 1,177 of their Arizona shipmates—approximately half the American fatalities at Pearl Harbor. Sent to military hospitals for a year, Don refused doctors’ advice to amputate his limbs and battled to relearn how to walk. The U.S. Navy gave him a medical discharge, believing he would never again be fit for service, but Don had unfinished business. In June 1944, he sailed back into the teeth of the Pacific War on a destroyer, destined for combat in the crucial battles of Leyte Gulf, Luzon, and Okinawa, thus earning the distinction of having been present for the opening shots and the final major battle of America’s Second World War.

As the seventy-fifth anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack approaches, Don, a great-grandfather of five and one of six living survivors of the Arizona, offers an unprecedentedly intimate reflection on the tragedy that drew America into the greatest armed conflict in history. All the Gallant Men is a book for the ages, one of the most remarkable—and remarkably inspiring—memoirs of any kind to appear in recent years.

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“The King Series Book 3: Heartless” by Alena Des #Spotlight

Author Alena Des discusses the creation of Riley, the lead character in

Heartless, book 3 of her King Series.


Heartless cover


I created Riley in the second book of my Kings series as a dark angel and the brother of my main female character. He was supposed to be a side character, a character that played his role and then jumps back into non-existence. But Riley I created soon became much more. He was rebellious enough to take off on his own, defy my plans for him to be nothing more than a side character. Soon, he was backstabbing me as his creator, talking to my readers, making his secretive connections to a large fanbase. Every time he talked, he was mysterious, manipulative. I knew he was the King of Deceptions and soon began to believe he was playing with all of us.  Readers kept asking:  Is he good? Is he bad? Who is he?

The sexy, humorous and cocky angel soon had my readers panting after him. By the time I was done with my second book, I faced desertion by them unless I wrote his story, the angel who had captivated their hearts.  Oh, well…So, I was stuck with Riley. He almost screamed in my head as I was writing his book. I stopped apologizing to my readers for his vulgarity, rudeness, and shallowness. He couldn’t help it, he was the son of the Sex Goddess. And, I was merely his voice. Besides, my readers wanted to know more about him, right? This was it. They were free to hate him.

It didn’t really work that way. Riley effused a natural charm. Who am I kidding? There was nothing natural about it. Women were after him. And he just didn’t give a damn. I almost didn’t like him. Almost. But as I scratched the surface with Riley, I found out so much more about this dark Angel.

I knew I was dancing with death. But I was gonna play the game until it claimed me. And eventually, it would. There was no escape.”  

I began to wonder: Who was he running from? And why was he behaving this way? I had to find out.

I needed help to bring out the fun, vulnerable side which was bottled deep down Riley. For that, I needed to save him from himself and from the one who was after him. I found the help I needed in Oriana. The woman who lived among the humans but was so much more. The woman who was immune to his sex appeal. The woman who held her own secrets. I knew she would be my savior. And, she would be his.

“Hi there, luv,” I said, turning on the charm. From up close, she was an even better catch. Though she was shorter and not as curvy as I desired, there was something about her which made me pause. “My name is Riley, baby.”

“Get lost, Riley,” the woman said.

I had misheard her. There was no other explanation.

“C’mon,” I said, making sure I touched her. It was done.

I had her. I was sure. “I’m rather impatient, honey. What’s your name?” I asked, knowing full well I would not remember it a few seconds after she told me. It was still polite to ask.

“My name is Oriana,” she said politely, but I noticed the sarcasm. “Now get lost,” she repeated. I watched in amazement as she raised her middle finger.

She was making a ‘fuck off’ sign.

I was confused. I was shocked. There were only a few things that generated those feelings in me. I was having a truly weird moment right now. I liked it.

I can tell you that this whole book blog is all part of his plan. It is nothing but his masterful Deception. Read him at your expense, available since 15th of September, beware that he is waiting to charm you.  And, no one, but Oriana is immune.

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