Monday, October 31, 2022

VBT: Searching

by Rachel Graves


GENRE: Urban Fantasy 



A dragon terrified of being discovered by the government, Ravenna Drake is constantly on the 

move. When the woman who raised her gets cancer, Ravenna trades her nomadic work 

restoring black market magical goods for a steady job. But her cautious life ends after her name 

is found at the scene of a werewolf murder.

Dr. Ian Chen, a sorcerer bonded to a powerful relic, works for the government treating 

supernatural citizens. He insists on investigating when his patient’s body is discovered 

completely drained of blood. His search leads him to the beautiful but frustrating Ravenna 

Drake, who refuses to stay away from the case or follow his instructions.

As more bloodless bodies surface, threats from secret societies and corrupt politicians force the 

dragon and the sorcerer to work together. If Ravenna and Ian can’t catch the killer, the people 

they love the most may be the next to die.



His foot reached out to blur the circle and the ghost changed. Agony forced every other emotion 

aside. He couldn’t breathe, a heavy weight settled on his chest. Panic set in as he wheezed, his 

heart racing the way hers had raced. Was he experiencing her last minutes or just panicking at 

the emotions? Could he trust himself? Darkness started to crowd the edges of his vision. Not 

enough air. Sweat broke out along his back. Somewhere, Cloak was saying something, but he 

couldn’t hear it over the pounding of blood in his ears. He was going to die here. The blackness 

got closer.“No.” The flood of emotions stopped immediately, as Drake stepped in front of him. “That’s not

how this works. You don’t get to scream at him.”

His head throbbed, stinging like acid dripping down his face, but he could breathe again. The

darkness receded. The first thing he saw was Drake moving into the center of the stain, acting

as if the blood wasn’t there.

“I’ll give you enough energy to manifest, but start screaming again and I will end you, even if we

haven’t heard a damn thing you’ve got to say. Understand?” She paused, then reached her

hand out. A shaft of sunlight came in through the window and her hand seemed to glow. Then

the end of it disappeared, replaced with a chest. The shape grew outward, a filmy light turning

into a woman. The process took less than a minute, and he heard the sheriff whisper to God.

“Dr. Chen, she can talk to you now.” Drake said it with a very deliberate emphasis on the word

talk. Whatever the ghost intended, it wasn’t going to stand up to her. A deep surge of gratitude

coursed through him.



Rachel Graves writes mysteries that blend the supernatural with steamy, sexy scenes. Her work

explores the many shades of gray found between the lines of right and wrong. Rachel's books

focus on strong heroines who take charge of their own fate, their friends, and their families.

Rachel is a member of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America and uses research skills

honed getting a graduate degree in psychology to seek out rare folklore and magical creatures.

Her writing incorporates popular monsters like vampires and werewolves as well as diverse

creatures like selkies and yuki onna. Rachel has lived in a cursed town, taken far too many

ghost tours, and counts down to every Halloween starting in November. You can read short

stories and learn more about her on her



Friday, October 28, 2022

VBT: Stairway to Heaven

GENRE: Fantasy 



Corporal Jack Graven should be dead. Murdered by a vengeful angel at his own father's

funeral, Jack is resurrected and returns to life carrying a terrible secret: he is the Archangel

Gabriel reincarnated.

Jack's not the only one with secrets. His older brother, Lieutenant Colonel Tyler Graven "Demon

of Kyoto", has just inherited his father's fortune and legacy as Lord of War, with no intention of

stopping there: Tyler will someday rule the world.

The brothers reunite their elite military unit, “The Four Horsemen,” with Tyler’s longtime flame

Colonel Diana Levitas and the mysterious Lance Corporal Jin Xialong. Together they seek to

uncover the truth of Jack’s past life and propel Tyler to his impossible destiny.

Thrust into a supernatural war, the Gravens find salvation through the Black Muramasa, a

cursed black katana and the only weapon that can destroy immortals. As they uncover more

mysteries behind the ancient blade, they come face to face with the Devil himself, but in the

most familiar of faces. Their pasts, presents, and futures all linked, the Four Horsemen must

end the war once and for all to survive with their souls intact. Failing could mean the end of the


A follow up to the explosive first book in the Ballad of Fallen Angels series, “Sympathy for the

Devil,” Book 2 is an action-packed, gun-slinging adventure that packs the punch of a military

thriller with high-stakes supernatural intrigue. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 


Before the man could blink, I pulled the twin Berettas from their holsters, my fingers hammering

the triggers. Time for a bloodbath.

I had died once, and it wasn’t pleasant. An angel had swooped from the sky and smashed

through my chest as if it were thin wallpaper at my father’s funeral. Since then, I realized,

amongst other things, that I could move with godlike speed as necessary, which saved me from

anguish on most occasions. The drug dealer's trigger squeeze stretched longer than the instant

it took me to draw and fire, as I rolled to the right while dodging the threat of the man’s final

shots. I fired several more times before he could accomplish the same feat.

He was the first to die.

I could feel the rounds closing in on me furiously, like an angry storm of tiny projectiles absent of

remorse. I leapt forward into a dive and rolled to dodge several of them, sprinting to cover

behind a cluster of barrels in the room’s corner. I would regenerate if anything pierced my

armor, but after taking quite a few rounds over the years I realized pain was never enjoyable. A

roomful of men would soon learn a powerful lesson: everyone is a hero until it’s time to reload.

Unfortunately for the amateurs before me, they had begun firing simultaneously, and thus would

be incapacitated in tandem while reloading.

A few seconds could stretch into a lifetime.


Author Bio:

Alex Stevens is a Marine Corps Veteran with two deployments and a graduate of the University

of Nevada, Las Vegas Interdisciplinary Studies program, a unique undergraduate degree that

caters to students with various interests of study. He is also an advent traveler and philosophy

enthusiast who has spent a lifetime studying religions, with a focus on Non-denominational

Christianity. Alex spends most of his time going for walks, spending time with loved ones, and

when the juices are flowing, writing. Fantasy fiction is his great escape from the mundane and

he likes to create fantastical realities that are blended with non-fictional people, places, and



A $50 Amazon/BN GC will be provided to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter

during the tour.


Sunday, October 16, 2022

Sunday Post #90: Fluid Art 6


Hello All! 

I finally got the results I was looking for from one paint pouring method. What do you think? Feel? See? Any interpretation?

If you wish check out my Instagram page for my art .... @stoukhan84_art

Post Rewind

📌 Sept. 27th = Book Blast: An Amish Christmas Star
📌 Oct 6th = Book Blast: In the Mood
📌 13th = Book Blast: Daughter of Belial
📌 14th = Book Blast: Cause for Elimination

Currently Reading

📖 Shadow Kissed (by: Rebecca Garcia) = page 56

*** If you don't have anything to say about this week's topic, you can comment on any other part of the post or just say "hi".

*** I am always having to edit many of my posts. If I made any grammar mistakes, I will eventually fix them.

*** The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba @ Caffeinated Book Reviewer

Friday, October 14, 2022

Book Blast: Cause for Elimination


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Marla A. White will be awarding a $25 Amazon/BN 
GC to a randomly drawn winner 
via rafflecopter during the tour. 
Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.


Reclaiming her life after a devastating riding accident, equestrian Emily Conners’ world shatters again when she discovers her friend and boss laying in a stall with a smashed skull. Now jobless and with a handsome cop underfoot investigating the case, she's torn between wanting the killer found and keeping her own secrets safe.

Detective Justin Butler always gets his killer, but this victim has a stampede of enemies and few leads to go on. Stonewalled by the tight-knit equestrian world, he looks to Emily for help, but she’s strangely reluctant. Is she hiding something, or is she afraid of their growing attraction?

As the search for the murderer heats up, their hearts become entangled and their lives at risk, forcing Emily and Justin to work together to find the killer before they strike again.

Read an Excerpt

Dennis snapped on his own set of gloves and gestured toward the woman standing just outside the stall- cum-office. “Nice coat she’s got on. Didn’t you used to have one like it?”

“That’s Emily Conners. She found the body.”

“And so what, it’s a new gimmick? Everyone who reports a murder wins a free Blueberry coat?”

“It’s a Bu—never mind, you philistine. What was I supposed to do? We took her coat and shoes as evidence.”

Dennis wanted to say, you mind your own business and solve the crime, not take every hard-luck case you see under your wing. Nobody, not even Justin, had big enough wings to take in all the strays they met in this line of work. Instead, he left it alone. It was a lesson every cop had to learn for themselves.

Justin ignored his unspoken disapproval and took a sip of coffee. Instantly, his face scrunched up in an expression of pure horror.

“Don’t blame me. It was the only coffee I could find around here,” Dennis said while he checked out the office. “Hey, you take the horse out of the stall, add a ceiling fan, crappy furniture from the local office supply store, and a phone and you’ve got—a stall minus a horse.”

“People who live in glass cubicles,” his partner countered. “I kind of like the Feng Shui, it’s very grounding, especially with the window—”

“Yeah, yeah, it’s facing south and angled toward the moon, whatever,” he scoffed.

About the Author:

Marla White is a story analysis instructor at UCLA and writing coach who lives in Los Angeles. She graduated from the University of Kentucky (go Wildcats!), where she took her first horseback riding lesson. After dabbling in hunters, barrel racing, and weekly trail rides, she fell hopelessly in love with the sport of eventing. She conquered Novice level before taking a break to pursue novel writing but hopes to return to the saddle someday soon. Her first novel, “The Starlight Mint Surprise Murder,” was published in 2021 followed by the first two books in her Keeper Chronicles series. When she’s not writing, she’s out in the garden, hiking, or putting together impossibly difficult puzzles.


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Thursday, October 13, 2022

Book Blast: Daughter of Belial

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Jennifer will be awarding a $25 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Some Family Trees Should Be Burned. . .

Greer Girls are special. Greer Girls are rare. Greer Girls are central to the secret Order of Belial.

Sophie Greer knows none of this. All she knows is that her now ex-boyfriend cheated on her, she’s alone working in Paris, and her mysterious billionaire boss, Edward Hughes, is way too interested in her life.

But when Sophie is kidnapped in Moscow while on a business trip, she’s plunged into the dark underbelly of the global elite and a sinister secret society with deep ties to her family; ties that lead to revelations darker than anything Sophie could have imagined.

Betrayed by the man who raised her, and targeted by the illustrious Hughes family, only one thing is certain—family history can be deadly. If Sophie is to survive, she must decide who to trust and what to believe, or risk being crushed beneath the weight of the all-powerful secret Order of Belial.

Read an Excerpt

The front door slams behind me with a clamorous thud. I jump, frightened. Marcella Belleville’s ominous laughter sails through the air while the cloaked beings descend the steps to encircle me. Turning to and fro, I try to slip through an opening in their ranks, but they close in so that not even a hairpin could find a fissure for escape. A low chanting starts up, like a rumble from some vile private inferno.

Testor ad sanguinem. Respondendum est in sanguinem.

The primal beating of the drums grows louder, drowning out Marcella’s maniacal laughter. Blood rushes to my face. I hear a whirring in my ears.

Testor ad sanguinem. Respondendum est in sanguinem.

All I see is darkness. My heartbeat keeps time with the pulsing of the drums.

Suddenly I feel another presence. Ephemeral. Sinister. It also laughs. Its guttural wails blend with Marcella’s tinny falsetto as it, too, encircles and envelops me. No one is touching me. I know that. And yet…

It feels awful—delectable—disgusting—delicious, all at once. I hate it. The chanting grows louder.

Testor ad sanguinem. Respondendum est in sanguinem.

Testor ad sanguinem. Respondendum est in sanguinem.

“Stop!” I cry out, finding my voice at last. “Please. Stop!”

But it’s too late. Wispy black smoke fills my nostrils. My mouth freezes into a silent scream as the smoke fills every orifice in my head—eyes, nose, ears, mouth. The sound of babies crying mixed with horrific images of children laughing and playing in blood assault my senses. I know it can’t be real, must be a trick of some sort, an illusion, but I’m powerless to stop it.


About the Author

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Thursday, October 6, 2022

Book Blast: In the Mood


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. M W Arnold will be awarding a $10 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

During a hectic couple of weeks in February 1944, the girls of the Air Transport Auxiliary Mystery Club must face devastating personal loss amongst their number. A member of an illegal faction blackmails Betty, whilst a mystery at Mary's ancestral home threatens to cause more trouble than anyone thought possible. In the midst of what should be the happiest of times, the portents seem to be catching up and little is what it seems to be. Can the girls find the strength to battle forces both internal and external, yet still maintain their dignity and friendship?

Read an Excerpt

Jane slumped back into her seat, tore the headset off, and threw it onto the desk next to the radio she’d been about to attack. “I suppose you’re right. It only makes sense if she can’t receive what we’re sending. If I didn’t know her voice so well, I’d think someone was playing a trick on me.”

“Plus,” Betty added, “it’s on our frequency.”

Jane nodded in agreement. “Still, remind me to tear her off a stripe when she gets back…calling Hamble. This is Aston.” She ended with a nervous chuckle.

Betty joined in, eventually saying, “Still, you’ll have to give her points for originality, if nothing else.”

“I’ll give her something, all right,” Jane replied. “I’ll give her…”

“Mayday! Mayday! This is First Officer Aston. Am under attack by two Me109s!”

Jane and Betty stared at each other with open mouths, as the shocking statement blared out of the radio’s tiny speaker in Thelma’s unmistakable voice. When she’d simply been trying to get through earlier it had been in her normal, albeit frustrated, tone. Now unmistakable panic coursed through it.

The radio came to life again, only the first thing they heard this time was the chilling staccato chatter of gunfire! “I repeat, this is First Officer Aston of the ATA! I’m under attack. Rudder control is gone! My port engine’s on fire! Am going down, roughly northeast of Oxford…”

White as a ghost, Jane automatically made a grab for the microphone, “Thelma! This is Jane Howell. Do you receive? Over.”

After a few seconds, a voice came out of the speaker, barely audible, yet clearly that of their desperate friend, “Jane? Is that…”

And then, deathly silence…

About the Author:
M W Arnold lives near Northampton, UK and is known to his family and friends as, Mick. He was in the Royal Air Force for 16 years, visiting many different countries and very much enjoying himself. If he ever meets the Queen, he will have to thank her. He began writing as these characters needed their own voices. For a few years now, he's been a member of the Romantic Novelists Association, a wonderful group of writers who've welcomed this bloke into their fold with open arms.

Amazon Author Page

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