Sunday, October 2, 2016

Book Blitz: Untethered Anthology edited by Janine A. Southard with Giveaway

Untethered Anthology

Publication date: October 1st 2016

Genres: Adult, Fantasy

20 stories of magic and technology
Almost everyone carries a smartphone these days. They sit in pockets and on tables. They sleep on headboards and are the first things their owners check in the morning. They’ve edged out more mundane equipment like calendars and MP3 players.
They aren’t magical, of course. Or are they?
In Untethered: A Magic iPhone Anthology, 21 authors twist reality and call into question the mundanity we hold in our hands. They ask the question, “Is that smartphone completely explainable by science?” and they decide the answer is a resounding “No!”
From award-winners and bold new voices, from experienced fantasists and professional technologists, these stories are fun, clever, and often positive about the power of technology.
Enjoy new stories from:
Rhiannon Held / Manny Frishberg / Edd Vick / H.M. Jones / Kris Millering / Raven Oak / Jon Lasser / Sarina Dorie / Jonathon Burgess / Jeremiah Reinmiller / C.S. O’Cinneide / Stevehen Warren / Aaron Giddings, Sr. / Amanda Hackwith / Dale Cameron Lowry / Dawn Vogel / Kyle Yadlosky / J.S. Rogers / Angela Dell’Isola / Stephanie Djock / A. Moritz

At the intersection of fantasy and technology, iPhones could go either way.
Magic knows your number, and it’s calling you.

Launch price of $2.99 for a limited time only!


From Jonathon Burgess’s “On Your Right
Our fishing boat crested another six-foot wave, the deck pivoting sharply before falling back the other way as we slid into the trough. A deluge washed over the bow, the cabin and the stern deck, drenching us all. The South China Sea was doing its best to swamp us.
I fought to keep my balance. Mark clutched at the port side railing, heaving his guts out. His iPhone glowed in the zippered pocket of his jacket, visible through the thin, soaked fabric.
A sailor shouted as he tumbled away, splashing into the half-submerged stern of the fishing boat. “I really don’t think this is the way to Benaroya Hall,” I cried aloud.
Siri’s voice was calm as ever. “Continue one hundred miles south,” she said. “The destination will be on your right.”
It started slowly, like most things tend to. I wasn’t fond of downtown Seattle, but Mark went there all the time on work and errands. So he got the cell phone, while I was perfectly happy as the stay-at-home wife with the landline. Why the provider called the house, I’ll never know, but apparently we were eligible for a smartphone upgrade.
Mark was thrilled when it finally showed up. Like most technophiles, he couldn’t wait to try out all the newest bells, whistles, and other features. Frankly, I just hoped the mapping function would help with his abysmal sense of direction.
The box was classic Apple, a monochromatic brick. I liked to say that their products looked more like candy than anything else, but you certainly couldn’t tell from the packaging. This one didn’t even have any pictures, just a logo on the side in tinted foil. The phone itself was slick, some new design I hadn’t seen any of my friends with. Its edges were wholly rounded, and it didn’t have a port to connect a USB or battery cable.
Mark got it all figured out, of course. That’s what he does. Some days he can’t find his rear with both hands, but he’s pretty good with software interfaces. We spent a whole evening on the couch, listening to the bells and finding the whistles and asking silly questions of Siri. It was only the next morning that things started to get weird.
“Emma?” Mark asked. “Where are my keys?”
I was sitting at the kitchen table, reading the paper over coffee. It was a new blend I had found at a local farmers’ market, but I wasn’t terribly fond of it. Throwing it away would have been wasteful, so into the cupboard it would go, stuffed alongside two hundred others.
I’m picky about my coffee.
Mark was hunting under the table. His briefcase, phone, and travel mug were all in a pile atop it, ready for him to bolt out the door with as soon as he could find the keys to the car.
“Have you seen them?” he asked, now checking behind the knife block on the kitchen counter.
“Did you check your other pants?” I asked, taking another sip. Missing keys were a daily occurrence. Almost a kind of ritual, we’d been through it so many times before. The system we’d developed went like this; I would make faces at my coffee, and he would eventually find the keys somewhere strange before rushing off to join the morning gridlock.
“They’re not in my other pants. I’m sure I just saw them.”
“Take five steps to your left, and enter the living room. Then turn left, and approach the sofa. Lift all three cushions and look underneath. Your keys will be on your right.”
Mark and I looked at each other. Then we both looked to the iPhone, softly glowing atop his briefcase. Then we locked gazes again.
I just shrugged. The microphone must have been on. Some new app feature, I supposed.
Mark picked up his phone and walked out of the kitchen. I picked up my mug, trying to decide whether the latest sip had been worth it after all, then followed.
“They’re not here,” said Mark. He had both cushions on the floor, and was rooting around in the crumbs and loose change they’d hidden.
“That is your love seat,” said Siri, maybe a shade less enthusiastically. “Turn around, then take two steps to your sofa. Underneath, you will find your keys. On your right.”
“Oh,” said Mark. He did as directed, then lifted the keys triumphantly. He jingled them at me. “Found them. Thanks Siri.”
“You’re most certainly welcome,” she replied.



Book Blitz: Burned by Fire by Danielle Annett with Giveaway

Burned by Fire

Danielle Annett

(Blood & Magic #3)

Publication date: September 30th 2016

Genres: New Adult, Urban Fantasy

Aria’s pyrokinetic ability has always been hard to control, and being pulled in so many directions, isn’t making it any easier. Now she has to help Inarus, a foe turned friend who is being targeted by the Human Alliance Corporation—the very organization he once worked for.
But the HAC has more than just Inarus in their sights. Aria finds herself going deep into enemy territory to save a witchling child with never before seen powers, that the HAC has kidnapped to further their own ends.
Aria has been hired to save a child once before, and she failed. That failure has haunted her even to this day and she won’t let herself fail again. With the HAC closing in, and complications between herself and the Pack rising, Aria has no choice but to succeed. A child’s life is on the line and Aria will risk everything to save that life.

Previous books in the series:
20564142 25236851


I trudged up the stairs to my apartment and wiped wet tendrils from my face. Water sloshed in my boots, a reminder of today’s most recent adventure. I’d had the pleasure of bodyguard duty for a water nymph, which was no easy task given that, in her eyes, I was a glorified babysitter, and we happened to be staying in a cabin that was mere feet from the Spokane River. It was the middle of January, and I’d taken the polar bear plunge more than once today. I was chilled to the bone, wet, hungry, and I sorely needed a good cup of coffee, or three.
Only one more flight of stairs to go. I could already taste the coffee on my tongue and feel the hot spray of a warm shower against my skin.
As my apartment door came into view, the hairs on the back of my neck rose and my body went on high alert. Something was off, and dammit, wasn’t that just my luck. I stood in the hall, a chilling breeze whipping my wet hair around my face from the open balcony doors and stinging my cheeks. Shit, it was cold.
I narrowed my gaze. Why were the balcony doors open in the middle of winter? It was like a blizzard out there. I stepped closer toward the balcony, intending to shut the doors, when a splash of red to my left caught my attention instead. There was blood on the doorknob leading into my apartment. This couldn’t be good.
I took a deep breath and debated just turning around. I was too tired to deal with anything else today. Was it too much to ask for some dry clothes and a hot cup of coffee? For chrissakes, I’d take a cold cup of coffee at this point. Then again, it was my apartment, and with my luck, there would be a dead body inside and I’d be framed for the murder. Why couldn’t stuff like this happen at a decent time of day when I was fully rested?
I pressed my ear against the door. Well, really it was more like I slumped against the door, but the result was the same. I listened for any signs of movement. The wooden door was cool against my cheek. Silence greeted me. Hmm, maybe there really is a dead body, I mused with a sick sense of morbid curiosity.


TOP TEN: Things Aria cannot live without

  1. Coffee, I mean, she is kind of an addict.
  2. Her daggers. She loves her blades
  3. Yoga pants, Nothing is better than feeling comfortable and knowing your butt still looks good.
  4. Motorcycle boots. No one wants to try and kick an opponent barefoot. A good pair of boots makes all the difference when knocking someone off their feet.
  5. Fire, this is kindof a given since she is a pyrokinetic after all.
  6. Friends. Aria tend to land herself in hot water from time to time and she’s lucky to have the friends she has to bail her out when help is needed.
  7. Her bad ass Honda civic. Built like a tank and reinforced with sleet plates and Kevlar, this little car is small but mighty and makes Aria feel safe and secure.
  8. A kick butt leather jacket. Every badass needs one.
  9. Chocolate. Sometimes the only thing that can fix life is chocolate.
  10. Declan. She doesn’t know it yet, but she will. He’s pretty important.

Author Bio:

Danielle Annett is a reader, writer, photographer, and the blogger behind Coffee and Characters. Born in the SF Bay area, she now resides in Spokane, WA, the primary location for her Blood & Magic series.
Addicted to coffee at an early age, she spends her restless nights putting pen to paper as she tries to get all of the stories out of her head before the dogs wake up the rest of the house and vye for her attention.