Friday, June 12, 2015

On Conversations: #award-winning #YA #author PJ Sharon

Please join me in giving a very warm welcome to the award-winning young adult author PJ Sharon! She's here to talk about her Chronicles of Lily Carmichael Trilogy. So, be sure and check out her interesting and informative guest post, the book covers and blurbs, and enjoy an excerpt from book 1, Waning Moon!

Lisa ~
______________________________________________

Hi Lisa,

Thanks for inviting me to hang out on your blog today. So many readers have asked my why, after writing four contemporary young adult romance novels, I decided to write a dystopian trilogy. This goes along with the age old question—where do you get your ideas?

For lack of a clear answer, most writers will say, “My ideas come from the dark recesses of my warped imagination,” or “I pull them out of thin air.” The reason for the short answer is that we really don’t know. Ideas are as intangible as a breeze, and sometimes just as fleeting. But if you can capture them, discover their true essence, and bring them to life on the page, you will find what all storytellers find…a desire to share an intimate and soul-deep part of themselves with the world.

Everything I see and do brings story ideas to mind or introduces me to new characters I want to write about. Life is full of interesting people and exciting scenarios at every turn if you’re willing to see beyond the surface and let your imagination run wild. Observation and experience are the fodder for every novelist and every story starts with the question…what if? From there, it’s as simple and as complicated as letting the characters in your head tell you their story.

After many discussions with neighbors and friends about “end of the world” scenarios, the Chronicles of Lily Carmichael Trilogy came to me fully formed with the questions, “What if I was a healer in a world where killing to survive became a necessity? Could I overcome my true nature to save myself or to save the ones I loved?” That question became Lily’s main internal conflict and the overall arc of her journey from the beginning to the end of the trilogy. Each book brought her closer to discovering that answer.

I never saw myself as a sci-fi/fantasy fan, so writing in that genre was a huge step outside of my comfort zone, but Lily’s story, regardless of the time period and setting, is still about a teenager trying to find her place in the world while negotiating the twists and turns of falling in love for the first time. That concept is at the heart of YA Romance whether set in 2015 or 2057. I went out on a ledge switching genres and tackling the daunting process of writing a dystopian trilogy, but it was worth it. I loved Lily’s journey, and as with all of my stories, I learned a lot about myself along the way.

Have you ever stepped out of your comfort zone with your writing, or tried something totally out of character for you?


WANING MOON
The Chronicles of Lily Carmichael trilogy Book 1

In the year 2057, in a post-apocalyptic world where a polar shift threatens the survivors of a widespread pandemic with extinction, sixteen-year-old genetically enhanced Lily Carmichael has more immediate problems. Her uncle is dying of cancer and her healing abilities are ineffective against the blood ties that bind them. In order to find a cure, Lily must leave the protection of her quiet town and journey to the trading city of Albany, all while avoiding the Industry, an agency that would like nothing better than to study and exploit her abilities.

Seventeen-year-old Will Callahan has been searching for his father since severe storms blasted through the Midwest, killing his mother and sister. When he learns that his father may be in the city, he catches a ride with Lily, a girl who has come to his rescue more than once. As the two embark on a dangerous journey, the tension between them grows. But the secrets Will’s keeping could put Lily in far more danger than traveling to the city with him, and if he was any kind of man, he would have told her to run the minute she found him.



WESTERN DESERT
The Chronicles of Lily Carmichael trilogy Book 2

WESTERN DESERT, Book Two in The Chronicles of Lily Carmichael trilogy, takes off where WANING MOON ends. Genetically enhanced sixteen-year-old Lily Carmichael, and seventeen-year-old Will Callahan embark on a journey across a sun-ravaged and decimated US in the year 2057, bound for the Western Desert on a dangerous rescue mission. The survivors they meet along the way put Lily’s healing abilities to the test and challenge Will’s resolve to find his missing father—no matter the cost. But even with the burden of life and death on their shoulders, and the Industry hot on their trail, the greatest challenge they face is trusting their hearts to each other.



HEALING WATERS
The Chronicles of Lily Carmichael trilogy Book 3

Healing Waters, book three in the Chronicles of Lily Carmichael, a young adult dystopian trilogy, picks up with sixteen-year-old genetically enhanced Lily Carmichael and friends in the midst of a daring escape from Las Vegas.

In this final installment, Lily faces her ultimate challenge. After a failed rescue attempt, and no home to return to, Lily and Will reunite to join with her uncle and his Network of rebels, taking on Vice President Malevich and his army of agents, drones, and Guardians. With Malevich systematically enslaving the city-dwellers who depend on the New Government for their survival—he’s made it clear he will eliminate anyone who stands in his way.

Leading the rebellion while staying one step ahead of the Industry, takes Lily, Will, and their friends, on a harrowing journey from the desert southwest to the new Capitol in Chicago, where they’ll face a fight to the death. But Lily’s greatest gift—her driving instinct to heal and protect—may also be her greatest enemy. As Lily’s abilities grow, can she do what it takes to save humanity, while taking down the madman bent on destroying it?

Excerpt from WANING MOON

       The sound of water caught my attention. “The sewer!”
       Will understood immediately. “After you,” he said letting me go and then limping toward the storm drain. Water ran down through the holes of a large sewer grate.
       We both groaned as we lifted the heavy iron cover. I dropped down into the icy churning water, sucking in a breath while Will climbed down the ladder. He paused, grunting as he pulled the heavy cover in place behind him.
       Just in time. We heard rushing footsteps overhead, voices loud and angry. Will and I exchanged a look and then turned toward the dark tunnel. Will’s hand slipped into mine as he took the lead. “Stay with me. Don’t let go.”
       I let him pull me forward. The water deepened as we dragged ourselves along. The sound of rushing water ahead had me backing up against the current. “This is not a good idea.”
       Will tugged me by the hand, wincing in pain. “It’s the only way out. Trust me. It’ll be all right.”

       “Trust you? That’s a joke, right?”
        “Can we fight later?”
       Before I could argue, a wave of turbulent water rushed in from a connecting pipe, and swept us off our feet. Will’s hand tightened around mine and we dropped abruptly downward. As the slope steepened, the water picked up speed. Darkness and the stench of sewage overwhelmed my senses. I prayed a quick prayer that the end of the tunnel was near. What I worried for next was how far of a fall it would be to the murky waters of the Hudson below when we reached it.
Another rapid decent shot my stomach to my throat and Will’s hand pulled free. “Noooo!”
But the thunderous roar of the cascading waterfall swallowed the sound of my scream.  It launched us into the darkening horizon like a torpedo, and then dumped us thirty feet into the icy roiling waters of the Hudson River.
       With my arms and legs flailing, I hit the water hard and was immediately plunged into the freezing depths. I kicked for the surface, but the water pummeled me back down. My breath escaped me and panic set in, but my will to survive made me kick and claw my way under the thick debris until I hit something solid.
       Dragging myself to the surface, I took great gulps of air as I clung to the roots of a tree sticking out of the embankment next to a bridge. I held tight while water rushed by. Will was nowhere to be seen. My chest ached as I choked out water. Finally, I managed to crawl up the roots of the tree and roll myself onto solid ground.
       I lay there looking up at the night sky, my breath ragged. The lights of the city dimmed the shimmer of scattered stars, and a dark haze of clouds threatening rain snaked across the full moon. At least that meant no one would be on the streets. When my head stopped spinning, I sat up and scanned the river. My heart took another plunge. A body lay motionless a little further down the embankment under the bridge.
       Slipping along the muddy hillside, I made my way to where Will had washed up on shore. When I reached him, I dropped to one knee and felt for a pulse in his neck. A wave of relief ran through me.
       I shook him gently. “Wake up, Will.” His eyes fluttered open. A small dimple appeared in one cheek.
       “I told you everything would be all right.”
       I wanted to punch him, but then I realized how close I’d come to losing him. I helped him sit up. “What now, oh wise one?”
       He grinned at my sarcasm. “We get the hell out of here, that’s what. They’ll be looking for us for sure. We need to catch a boat down river and get as far away from Albany as we can.”
       In spite of my desire to heal the deep purple bruises on his face and the ribs I knew to be cracked, my better judgment told me to cut my losses then and there. “I think now is the time we part ways,” I said. I couldn’t leave Albany without Sam’s medicine, and Will was a liability I couldn’t afford. Not only was he in no shape to be pulling off a robbery, I clearly couldn’t trust him as far as I could drag him.


Award winning author of young adult books, Massage Therapist, Personal Trainer, and Yogi, PJ Sharon has been called “a powerhouse of positivity and productivity.” Her mantra is “find balance in all things, and live every day to the fullest.” A black belt in the art of Shaolin Kempo Karate, avid kayaker, and singer of Italian art songs, PJ has two grown sons and lives with her brilliant engineer husband in the Berkshire Hills of Western MA where she writes YA…because every teen deserves a hopefully ever after.

Find PJ:

www.pjsharon.com
facebook.com/pjsharonbooks
twitter.com/pjsharon

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

On Conversations: #interview with #AAMBookclub #author Aisha Linnea

Please join me in welcoming author Aisha Linnea to Conversations today! Nichol is here to talk about her latest release, Never Trust A Soul! So, check out the cover, blurb and excerpt below. And don't forget to check out her interview too, and get to know Aisha!

Lisa ~
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Never Trust A Soul

Paris Johnson, twenty-four year old Baltimore City native holds deep and dark secrets. On the exterior she's a successful God-fearing business woman. But when you dive deeper into her life you'll find that she's the epitome of a female gangster.

Paris left Baltimore at the age of eighteen thinking that she was escaping the perils of inner-city living. Not only did she find that troubles can reside anywhere but she naively began trusting others without reservation.

After falling into a whirlwind relationship with Carlo, she's forced into a dangerous lifestyle which pushes her to taking matters into her own hands.

Will Paris succumb to the dangerous lifestyle that she has become accustomed to or break loose, rise to the occasion and take control of her destiny?

"Never Trust a Soul" is a true page turner with surprises around every corner. Nothing or no one is as it seems!



Excerpt from Never Trust A Soul

     Key and I are perfect for each other. He is tall, brown-skinned, handsome, and has swag for days. I was never the type to like one of those neat ass pretty niggas. I needed them to be a little rough around the edges and he definitely fits the bill. Key is the type of guy who is always thinking of ways to perfect his hustle. The first time he caught my eye was when I left school and came back to B-More for good. Trina, my best friend, convinced me to go to a party at Mirage with her. I will never forget that night.
     Key was standing in the VIP section all swagged out with a black and gray Gucci polo shirt with the hat to match. I remember admiring that nice Brietling timepiece on his wrist. Watching his every move, I couldn’t help but to notice the raggedy chickenhead that was clinging to him trying to make it known that they were together. Trina was mingling and flirting while I was just chilling on the red couch in our section watching Key.
     Trina plopped down on the couch beside me and began to talk over the music. “Let’s go downstairs to the bathroom and freshen our makeup.”
After I nodded my head, we made our way through the crowded club. We walked down the steps towards the bathroom stopping at the huge mirror that covered the whole wall to take a few selfies.
     “Damn, Paris, could you be any more obvious?” Trina asked while posing in the mirror.
     “Huh? What are you talking about, Trina?”
     “You think I didn’t notice you checking Key out?”
     “Key who?”
     “You know what Key, bitch. Keon that used to hang with your brother when he was home.”
     “Wow, have I been gone that long? I didn’t even recognize him. I can see that life has definitely been treating him right.”
     “Girl, you ain’t neva lied.”
     “Who’s the chick he’s with?”
     “His baby mother Jasmine, but she ain’t nobody,” Trina replied while twisting her lips.
     “That counts me out. I don’t need any more drama in my life. He is looking good though.”
     “Looking good and doing good, Paris! I’m going to tell him to come over to our table when we go back upstairs,”
     “Don’t do that, Trina. I told you that I don’t want any more drama. I already have enough to deal with.”
     “Paris, please. The only drama you have is that crazy ass Carlo who’s all the way in Florida. You need to leave him alone anyway.”
     The squeaking sound of the doorknob twisting brings me back to reality. I take my charging stance once again, gripping my blade tightly. My heart is pounding out of my chest. I break out in a cold sweat and my eyes began to bulge as the doorknob turns. It’s true that your whole life flashes before your eyes when you think you’re about to die.
     I begin to think about all the things I could have done differently. This has to be the moment before judgment day. My time to stand before the Lord and based upon the position of my soul, I’m deemed to Heaven or Hell. I wonder, based upon my life from birth up until now, where will I end up going? Life experiences have really changed me. I am an evil and cold-hearted bitch who doesn’t trust anyone. I wasn’t always this way. I was once a sweet, innocent young girl so full of promise who gave everyone a fair chance.


Interview with Aisha Linnea

Who is Aisha Linnea the author vs Aisha Linnea the person?
 
Aisha Linnea the author and Aisha Linnea the person are one in the same. My writing includes a piece of me and my experiences, although the stories are exaggerated they all include real feelings and emotions that I am passionate about. The author in me is able to express things differently and give a perspective that maybe easier for someone to receive. But everyone that knows me knows that I have always been an outspoken person.

What is the meaning of “Never Trust a Soul” and why did you use that title?

The meaning of “Never Trust a Soul” is that you can’t take people for their exterior facade. You have to really get into the inner essence of the human being. When I say “soul”, I am talking about a person’s deeply felt moral and emotional nature. I used the title because I was connected to it. I began writing the story and midway the title just rolled off of my tongue. Also It speaks to the moral and emotional dilemma that people face when having relationships.
 

What message are you trying to convey to your readers?
 

I wrote this book for women of all ages, I have a special place in my heart for younger women because I have a daughter of my own that I wanted to be able to share this message with. Too many times young women are going out into the world unequipped with the necessary tools to discern someone who has your best interest at heart verses someone who is using you for their own agenda. As a young woman we have to make sure that we are asking the right questions, being aware, and trusting our initial instincts, and when something seems too good to be true it usually is.

Why do you feel your book is so important to the youth of today?
 

I know that this book is important because this generation is not informed enough. In this day and age with so much going on in our communities as adults we have to be able to provide the younger generation tools to be able to empower themselves. It is important to know that karma is real and that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction, which is one of newton's laws. So even on a scientific level the world is telling us that we have to be prepared for the outcome of the actions that we make.
Why did you make a trailer for your book?
 

In today’s society social media has become so important that you can put a message up today and have a million views by tomorrow. I wanted to grab the attention of people and let them know that books are still around, there is still a good story line and a plot. I put my video up on Worldstar and YouTube and was able to reach people that I would have never reached by just posting on my page “come buy my book”. I wanted it to be different and unique and I feel that my readers were pleased.
Why did you choose to self-publish instead of using a well known publishing company?
 

I chose to self-publish because I am a new author, and I know that no one would be able to offer me what I could offer myself. One of my goals was to go into business for myself. When I looked at the deals that other authors were getting, it didn’t make good business sense. I felt so strongly about the message that I was putting into this book and I didn’t want my story to be watered down in order to fit what a publishing company had as a vision for me.

What are your goals for the book “ Never Trust a Soul” in 2015? What are your goals as an author that you would like to accomplish by 2016?
 

My goal for 2015 is to be able to get my book out there. I want it to be in book stores, on bookshelves, and I want it to be in as many hands as possible. I want everyone to hear this story, share this story and take away from it, that this could be someones life and that you can’t just walk around with blinders on oblivious to what is going on around you.

As an author I want to be able to grow my brand and, grow as a person. With the tumultuous climate in the country I know that I have to be a voice, a beacon of change for my city and for lost people that can not speak for themselves. I want to be able to do an outreach program for young women in the city of Baltimore, which will equip them with knowledge and skills to be more confident when making important decisions regarding their livelihoods.

 

Aisha Linnea an up and coming author from Baltimore speaks volumes to the new generation with her debut novel “Never Trust A Soul”.

Aisha learned how to balance a demanding work and personal life as a single mother. As life began to change Aisha knew that she had a story to tell which gave birth to her ambitions to become a writer.

Self publishing her first novel Aisha has focused on her new found passion of writing. She will continue to give ground breaking messages that will challenge all generations on ideas of love, trust, loyalty and beyond.

As the momentum from her first book continues she wants her readers to know that “Never Trust A Soul” is just the beginning.

Find the author:
Facebook: www.facebook.com/NeverTrustASoul1
Twitter : @AuthAishaLinnea
Instagram: @Aisha_Linnea
Website: www.AishaLinnea.com




Friday, June 5, 2015

New Release: DAKOTA COWBOY

Dakota Hearts series, Book 8 

The last thing Luke McKinnon wanted in life was to work at the family oil business. He'd done a good job steering clear of that by setting up a successful law practice in Sioux Falls. But when the patriarch of the family falls sick, Luke steps in. He's only trading his crisp white dress shirt for a t-shirt and hardhat until his father is back on his feet. He doesn't plan on sticking around. That is...until he meets Tessa.

Single mother, Tessa Rock isn't afraid of hard work. She can hold her own with the ranch hands on her daddy's ranch and on an oil rig. She doesn't have time for a man to mess up her fragile life...until Luke McKinnon shows up on her rig. The handsome lawyer is probably used to having beautiful women draped on his arm. But at the end of the day, it's a miracle if she can get all the dirt and grime out from under her fingernails. The two of them couldn't be more different. But none of that matters. She quickly learns what a fool she'd been to think of Luke as just a lawyer who can help her get what she wants. One night in his warm embrace, and seeing the heart and soul of a man who loves so deeply, Tessa realizes she wants the man...for the rest of her life.


Order DAKOTA COWBOY:
http://amzn.to/GUTB3P  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/her-heart-for-the-asking-a-western-romance-lisa-mondello/1120340189?ean=2940046249910  http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/her-heart-for-the-asking  https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/her-heart-for-the-asking/id644030766?mt=11  https://play.google.com/store/books/details?id=b1nAAgAAQBAJ  https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-herheartfortheasking-1763130-154.html  http://www.amazon.co.uk/Heart-Asking-western-romance-ebook/dp/B0077EGDAI/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1368140011&sr=1-1&keywords=her+heart+for+the+asking

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