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I just returned home from my roommate’s wedding, so I’m feeling a bit sentimental. I also haven’t quite gotten back into the swing of things since I returned from Houston and then from field work, so this will once again be a bunch of photos with captions. Sorry, not sorry.

#1. My friends

See? I told you I’m feeling sappy. I got to spend a long weekend with half of my Missoula friends for my roommate’s wedding, and I had a fantastic time catching up with them. Hopefully I get to do it again with the other half next weekend on the geology grad student hike! Ok, so, no photo for this one, because I obviously don’t have one that has all of you in it (besides, most of you probably don’t actually want to be ON my blog anyway), but you ought to know who you are by now. I missed you guys. ALL SUMMER. I am very happy to be spending the next year of my life in this town with you all.

The rest of these are in no particular order.

The mountains! And also the UM campus.

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9460_17660_Missoula_Mountains_mdHouston is VERY flat. I only knew which direction was North when I was on the road that lead to both my home and my office. Mountains are extremely important to my internal navigation, as it turns out. Flat country is not good for me. Plus, they’re absolutely gorgeous, any time of the year.

As a bonus, here are some mountains up around Glacier, where the wedding took place. Montana is beautiful.

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These dogs:

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Five on Black, the best place to get quick, cheap, delicious food. My roommate and I go here at least once a week. We have joked about opening one in Bozeman and retiring. If you are ever in Missoula, you should definitely check it out.

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My office. Though currently, it’s under construction, and likely won’t be finished in time for classes to start tomorrow. There will be 6 of us working in there at my last count, and none of us can get to our desks at the moment. The whole place is a mess, and no help from our massive rock sample collections. At least a lot of mine are in boxes that don’t need to be moved…

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BBQ’s!!! Ok, so we only managed to do this once before I left for the summer, and we’re having an unusually cold August, but… There will be a BBQ before the warm weather COMPLETELY goes away. I hope.

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Did I mention that I missed these dogs?

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My walk to campus, especially in the winter. It might be cold, but it’s also gorgeous, especially when the river freezes.

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SKIING!!!! You cannot ski in Houston. Ok, you can’t ski in Missoula in the summer either. But… skiing is just a short drive away, if there isn’t enough snow right in town. I’m hoping to take my cross country skis out more than 3 times this year.

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And as a final bonus, golden dog was EXHAUSTED after the wedding festivities, and was therefore very good for snuggles.

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Missoula is a wonderful place, and if it wouldn’t have been totally weird, I might have liked to hug the sidewalk when I finally got to come back. Come December, expect a similar post about Seattle.

 

 

For the first time this year (as far as I can remember anyway), someone in the blog pact failed to update on time. So, lucky for you guys, you get an extra post from me this week! But I just got home from doing field work today, so I ran around doing errands all day, taking a friend of mine out for drinks since he’s about to graduate (yay!),catching up with my roommate after her bachelorette party,preparing to go to the wedding for the weekend, AND getting ready to begin the new school year. Needless to say, a punishment post could not have come during a worse week so far this year.

So you get more photos!

Here is a beautiful coal bed that is a little interbedded with some muddy bioturbated sandstone. Figure that one out.

 

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So I stumbled upon this in my field area on the last day. It seems relevant to note that this was on the land belonging to a country club. There were lots of trails and things, but residences are all far away. A bottle of toilet bowl cleaner appearing here is a complete mystery. If you have any insightful theories, please leave them in the comments!

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When I got home, this gorgeous golden dog was super happy to see me, and just wanted to hang out and follow me around. I missed her terribly the last several months, and I am thrilled to hang out with her for the next year! She’ll stop me from buying my own dog before I graduate.

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Thesis Update

The internship is over, and I’m back in Montana. A mere 24 hours after I got home, I went out to my field area, and I’m still there. I have had so much to worry/think about over the last week I hardly knew it was Sunday. I actually kept forgetting it was Sunday until I realized, at 10:30pm, that I needed to write a blog post. I don’t have time to write a whole bunch of words like I normally do, I don’t have time to put together some spam poetry, and the mosquitos are eating me alive (seriously, I look like I have chicken pox right now). Also someone just walked up to me and asked me for the wifi password at 11pm. It is time to go to bed.

Instead, I’ll give you some photos of field work this week!

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This was the view from my lunch spot in a tiny patch of shade that only got smaller as we sat there. We then proceeded to climb to the top of the cliff, which is higher than what you see here.

 

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This is a trace fossil! I think it’s paleophycus, but I’m terrible at trace fossils. So. Um. Worms did this. In the Cretaceous.

 

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This is my fancy artistic attempt at a panorama view of my field area. That little bit of civilization out there beyond the cliffs? That’s where we left our car. This is the top of the ridge that you can see in the first photo. There was more of it behind us.

 

photo 4This is a bug. I don’t know what kind of bug, because I am not a bug scientist. But possibly cicada? It’s about an inch long plus wings. Much prettier than those giant cockroaches I saw in Houston. If you are a bug person and can identify this, please leave a comment! It died outside our apartment, and I think it was stuck there for a couple of days, making loud noises in the middle of the night. That, or there’s some giant cricket living in the cabin walls trying to torture us in our sleep.

Welp, that’s my thesis update! More to come later when I am not surrounded by flying insects. I am so ready to be home, but I’ve got 4 more days out here. Be glad you are not me right now. I have slept in my own bed exactly once in the last two and a half months.

 

Recently, a good number of my writing friends have been blogging on tour about their writing processes, and a couple weeks ago one of them nominated anyone who wants to answer these questions. As I have recently decided I need to get back in touch with my writing life, I have accepted that challenge. Going to grad school greatly diminished the time I had to write for many reasons, and it’s time I rearranged some of my extracurricular priorities. I figured Blogging on tour! would be a good place to start.

What are you working on?

Currently I have 2 projects in the works. The first is an urban fantasy trilogy involving witches, vampires, demons, angels, and nephilim. The overarching plot of the trilogy has been planned, and a draft of the first book has been written. I’ve written an outline for the second draft of the first book, and now I’m going into research mode so I can improve the world-building in my story. I might be building off the Greek vampire myth of Vrykolakas, but I’m in the early stages yet. I know the world is supersaturated with vampire novels, but I don’t care, because I still love reading them, and I know lots of people who still love reading them, and honestly, I’ve been working on this story since before the most recent surge in vampire popularity began. I just want to tell a good story.

My second current project is a steampunk novel about two sisters, an inventor’s daughters, who grew up in an orphanage, are obsessed with science and desperate to find Atlantis, the secret city of the scientific world. Or something. It was a NaNo novel, several years ago, and it was really fun to write. It has a complete draft, but I haven’t touched it since I finished it.

How does your work differ from others’ in the same genre?

Hmm… well, I haven’t read everything in either of the above-mentioned genres, but I will say I haven’t read anything where you have varieties of angels and demons that originated from the same place. There is no heaven and hell in my urban fantasy trilogy, only some form of Netherworld where supernatural creatures come from. I am largely developing the world my novel is set in from scratch (though I will try to weave in some of the myths surrounding the creatures I’ve chosen to coexist in my world), so I would hope there isn’t one quite like it out there already.

As for my steampunk story… that’s harder to say as I’ve only read a few steampunk novels so far. I’m obsessed with Atlantis, but my version of it is one that I haven’t ever encountered. The towers and buildings are all made of shipwrecks with crazy bridges between them, and that’s my favorite part.

Why do you write what you do?

A long time ago I realized that the books I read didn’t always turn out the way I wanted them to. Specific characters didn’t do the things I wanted them to, or they didn’t fall in love with the characters I wanted them to end up with. So I decided it was time to write the things  that I wanted to read. That’s the simple, vague answer. I am also obsessed with supernatural creatures, especially vampires. I’m kicking myself for not finishing my urban fantasy novel before vampires became so popular again and everyone got tired of them… again… If I’m lucky, I’ll catch the next cycle (or maybe even start it?).

With steampunk, it is very much about the aesthetic of the setting, and it’s about doing some real historical research. I try to find information about failed inventions, and come up with a fictional way for them to work. Writing steampunk feels more like an adventure than writing urban fantasy. I had an incredible amount of fun during NaNoWriMo when I wrote this story of two sister thieves obsessed with science. Not that writing urban fantasy isn’t equally enjoyable, it’s just a different kind of fun.

How does your writing process work?

Hmm… Well, usually I start with a single scene in mind. In this case, both of these novels grew out of some pretty vivid dreams I had – the kind where you wake up in the morning and it still feels real. The scene is also usually an interaction between two people, maybe three.

Then I think about the characters involved in the scene – how do they know each other? Where are they from? What’s they’re background? Their motivations? Why are they here, together, at this particular moment?

Once I have that, I start to look at the bigger picture, develop some kind of plot around this one scene and these two or three characters. Eventually, I start actually Writing The Thing. Sometimes I’ll go through it linearly, sometimes I’ll skip around, if there’s a particular scene I get stuck in my head and need to find somewhere for it to go. I also work on world building, but I don’t focus on it too much.

If I like the story enough, I finish a rough draft. Then I let it sit for a bit before I go through it  with a red pen and pick out all the things I liked, the things I didn’t, plot holes, and write down things I think might fix the problems. I’ll also talk about it with my writer friends.

Then, I write an outline for the second draft – a very detailed outline. The one I’m currently working on for the first urban fantasy novel went from 14 pages to about 20 after I re-wrote it. I like to take that to my writer friends and force myself to answer their questions about the plot holes I didn’t catch or chose to ignore.

When I feel like the outline has taken care of the plot holes from the first draft, and makes some kind of logical sense for the story I’m trying to tell, and the characters I’m trying to portray, I dive into the second draft. Right now, I’m at this stage, and this is mostly consisting of nailing down some of the world building facts that I need to know before I start writing a new draft. This is also the furthest I’ve gotten with a novel.

What I intend to do once I have a second draft written is send it to a select two or three writer friends who would be interested in, and whom I trust enough, to give me some honest feedback. Once I have that, I’ll do a third draft, and at that point, maybe try it out on some beta readers. That’s the plan anyway. Wish me luck!

Nominations:

Jesi Lea Ryan, @Jesilea on Twitter. I have probably talked to her about my novels more than anyone else, so I value her friendship and opinions very highly. She has also published several books already, most notably the Arcadia Day trilogy (book 3 is coming out later this year!!). Jesi is brilliant and funny and I am proud to call her one of my best writing friends.

Laura Taylor, @LS_Taylor on Twitter. Another of my best writing friends, also brilliant, and also funny. I cannot wait to read a story she’s written!

Ladies, you are by no means obligated to do anything with this, but the two of you are the writers on Twitter I interact with the most (and occasionally in real life!), and I am therefore the most curious about your writing process! And if you haven’t been nominated for Blogging on Tour yet, and you want to be, feel free to answer these questions on your own blog and keep spreading the writerly love.

A little while ago I offered my blog for a cover reveal of Nine by Night, a collection of 9 urban fantasy novels. I also got an advance review copy of the book in order to write some reviews! So here are my thoughts on the stories from Nine by Night that I’ve read so far. More to follow! You can purchase the collection on Smashwords or Amazon for $0.99 for a limited time!

Nine By Night-E-BOOK Cover2

Witch Hunt, by S.M. Reine

This book is worth reading just for the miles-a-minute twists at the end. But there’s much more to it than that, I promise.

As the first book in a collection of 9 urban fantasy novels written by women, I was expecting a story narrated by a female protagonist. Pretty stereotypical thought for me to have, and I feel a bit guilty about it, so I’m sorry. Moving on. Once I got over my initial disorientation, this story gripped me from start to finish. At its heart, this story is a mystery novel in magical clothing, which in my opinion makes it much more fun than a regular mystery novel. Our leading man is Cesar Hawke (great name, btw), and he wakes up to find himself accused of a murder that he has absolutely no recollection of committing, not to mention he doesn’t consider himself a killer by any means. He must go on the run to uncover the truth about what happened that night, and the adventure is never dull. Like I said before, towards the end there are a variety of twists and turns. But while this can often clutter the story, author Reine executes them beautifully. I was never once confused without a good reason (usually right along with the main character), and I liked the fast pace of solving the mystery at the very end.

The characters were all believable and had distinctive personalities. I hope in future novels in the series we can learn a bit more about their backgrounds, and maybe even see Cesar interact with his sister.

I really enjoyed the sense of humor in this novel. Through all the drama I had a lot of laughs, and I think the humor would appeal to both men and women (as long as you’re not too uptight!).

I look forward to reading more by this author!

Justice Calling, by Annie Bellet

I absolutely loved this one. It’s shorter than the others I’ve read so far in this collection, but it’s one of my favorites. The main character is a female gamer and comic-book-store-owner, and on top of that – she’s got some real magic up her sleeves. Our heroine, Jade also extremely brave and capable when it comes to protecting those she loves.

The story centers around some dark magic that’s been used to freeze a bunch of shifters in their animals state to gain power from them. It’s pretty dark, but the author has a great sense of humor that gets pulled out at all the appropriate moments. Werewolves are all right, but I love seeing a bunch of characters that happen to be people who turn into animals and AREN’T consumed by wolf-pack mentality. This type of shifter story was extremely refreshing in that regard.

I also enjoyed the little bit of romance weaved into the plot, because it’s not the focus, and it has plenty of room to grow in later books. I’m pretty sure this is the first urban fantasy novel I’ve read whose heroine is also a total nerd (all the sci-fi/gamer/fantasy/etc. references were excellent), and I can’t wait to read more of Jade’s story. This story was really fun.

Rust & Relics #1: Torrent, by Lindsay Buroker

I can’t remember the last time the opening chapters of a book terrified me as much as these did. I made the mistake of starting this book right for bed and couldn’t stop until the main characters were safely back in civilization. You see, the beginning of this novel brought back scary memories of watching The Descent.

But if you can make it through those first couple chapters, the plot thickens considerably. Our heroes are archaeologists, which is a fun twist for this genre that I haven’t seen before. Their chosen profession is hunting for archeological treasure and selling it for profit. Not super lucrative, but they get to travel around in a camping van that has so much personality, it’s practically a character all on its own. As far as I can tell, this story doesn’t follow any of the well-known mythical creature myths that I know about, which makes it all the more interesting. It is very much a mystery that gets weirder with every chapter.

The author also has a fun sense of humor. I absolutely love the character of Simon, who is a total nerd, and also hilarious in his own right. Delia is our curious, intelligent heroine and I find her to be a very relatable character. She is more or less following her dream to become a female Indiana Jones, and while it’s not as lucrative as she might have hoped, she stands by it because it’s fun. I wish I could be so brave. Temi is a bit of a mystery, but I’m looking forward to seeing her character grow.

There are so many strange happening in this book it’s a wonder I can keep it all straight – but the author is clearly talented, and I’m able to hold it all together until the final reveal… Which is only a half reveal. There is clearly a lot more left in this story, and I can’t wait for book 2!

Arcadia’s Gift, by Jesi Lea Ryan

This book is fantastic! One of those books I got so wrapped up in I couldn’t put it down. Cady’s story is unique. She’s a twin who suffers a psychic break after her twin sister is killed, and gains herself a bit of a superpower – empathy. Add that to the craziness of high school life, and you have a supernatural novel full of conflict, excitement, adorable moments, and an idea of what it’s like for a family to lose a child and a sister. All these things are weaved together brilliantly by author Jesi Lea Ryan. Cady is a really fun character, too. She’s just your average teenage girl until her whole life changes in one terrible moment. She handles herself well, and is completely believable as a teenage girl. Cady is definitely someone I’d love to have been friends with in high school.

Once again, a romantic subplot is woven into the story without becoming the focus and taking away from the overarching plot (which if you can’t tell by now is my favorite style of romance-writing). There’s a hint at a love triangle forming, but rather than rooting for one of the boys, I am Team Cady, all the way. She is a very strong young woman, and I can’t wait to read the final chapter to her story.

Book 2, Arcadia’s Curse is out now, soon to be followed by Arcadia’s Choice later this year. I enjoyed Curse even more than Gift so I can guarantee that the sequel won’t let you down.

Once again, you can find the book for sale at Smashwords and Amazon releasing at $0.99 for a limited time! That’s only $0.11 per book! It’s almost like stealing, but instead you’re supporting 9 independent authors! Go you.

That’s all for now – I’ll post the rest of my reviews either here, on Goodreads, or on Amazon as soon as I finish reading the rest!

I’ll admit, I was skeptical. A show about witches, airing on Lifetime, teased for being the “Women’s Channel.” I must remember that it also brought me Blood Ties, which was fun for the first season at least. I was also skeptical because I’d read some not-so-nice book reviews of the novel, Witches of East End. I must also admit, the book synopsis didn’t grab me the way the show has, and it’s likely I will never read it, now that I’ve seen how much the show strays from it (Much like Vampire Diaries and The 100 have, to their credit).

Perhaps the thing that made me most skeptical of all, however, was the cover image on Netflix (this is also the DVD cover image, as far as I can tell, for season 1).

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My first thought was “Witches of Jersey Shore??” Because. This image. It’s ridiculous. Everyone’s hair is enormous. The girl on the far right, Ingrid (I’ll talk about each of them in a minute) is dressed pretty much the complete opposite of how her character actually dresses. Freya (far left) looks like she has evil eyes (she doesn’t, she actually has very pretty eyes). But luckily for me, my love of all things supernatural won out, and I gave this show a chance.

I was not disappointed, and I was hooked by the first episode. I am the first to admit if it takes me a few episodes to get into a show, and this was definitely not the case with Witches of East End.

The number one thing that drew me in was the fact that this is very much a female-driven show. It centers around the Beauchamp women of East End – Wendy and Joanna, and Freya and Ingrid (Joanna’s daughters). Each of these women has a curse that gives them immortality. Wendy can transform at will into a cat, and she therefore has 9 lives. The other three are much more intertwined. When one of Joanna’s daughters dies, the other dies shortly after, often due to unrelated circumstances. Before Joanna has finished grieving, she finds herself pregnant with one, and then the other. This has been their pattern for hundreds of years.

This time around, when the show begins, Joanna has decided to hide from her daughters that they’re witches. You see, they never seem to survive past their mid-twenties in all their previous lives, and in all their previous lives they have learned to use their magic from a very young age. Joanna puts some kind of enchantment on them, and hides their magic.

That is, until Wendy shows up after 100 years and tells her sister they’re all in danger.

This is a lot to pack into a pilot episode, especially since the girls learn about their magic by the end of it, and I personally thought the writers, actors, and director all did an excellent job of pulling it off. I love all things supernatural, like I said above, but that isn’t what kept me around. It was this ensemble of strong female characters running the show (Dash and Killian, the two leading men on the show, certainly helped though, but I’ll get to them later).

1. Ingrid

Ingrid2 Ingrid1

 

Ingrid is definitely my favorite character. She’s a total bookworm, and she’s practical, and skeptical. I found her instantly relatable. She works in East End’s library and is continuously working on a PhD dissertation about the history of witchcraft in New England. Ingrid has the most trouble adjusting to having magic in her life, compared to her sister, Freya. She begins by taking a practical approach, and ends up unleashing a curse on herself. The first few episodes are quite a roller coaster for her, and she makes several attempts to never use magic again, to no avail. She struggles with this drastic change in her life, but becomes stronger for it. Watching her grow through the first season (and now into the 2nd season) has been amazing to watch.

2. Wendy

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Wendy is my second favorite. She’s the free spirit, semi-hippie of the bunch. She breaks the rules when she feels it’s appropriate, and she’s extremely comfortable with herself. Wendy is the aunt we all wish we had. I suppose this might make her a sterotype, but I like her. Her history has clearly shaped who she is today, and she still makes plenty of mistakes and has difficulty trusting people. Yet she is refreshingly confident and often surprisingly the voice of reason in the family. Wendy is also a little bit psychic and has the best collection of jewelry.

3. Freya

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Oh, Freya. This girl is ruled by the dramatic, and worries intensely about EVERYTHING. Oh, hey, that sounds a little like me… Anyway… Freya is also a little bit psychic, and she is super into learning she’s a witch, considering she thought she was going crazy through some of her formative years. Freya is often the comic relief, but her story revolves around her love for two brothers (ok, I know, this is starting to sound like Vampire Diaries, but bear with me). She is extremely passionate about everything she does, including her bar tending (it turns out she was great at mixing potions in her previous lives, and when she grew up without magic, this turned into an impressive drink-mixing skill). Freya has a strange sort of innocence about her, which makes her one of the kindest characters ever. It also gets her into a lot of trouble, but I love this girl, and kind of wish she was MY little sister. The friendship she shares with Ingrid is very similar to the sisters in the Lizzie Bennet Diaries, or Charmed.

4. Joanna

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I couldn’t find a photo of Joanna that I thought captured her well, so here’s a photo of her with Wendy making strange faces as they try to explain something unpleasant. This sort of thing happens often. Many delightfully awkward moments on this show. Joanna’s character is fun because she gets to be both a mother and a sister. She’s the most stable character in the group. Her fatal flaw, however, is that she is often idealistic – a fact Wendy likes to point out on more than one occasion. She has many enemies, but it seems they were all created while she was in pursuit of saving her family. Joanna is probably my least favorite of the main characters, but she is a great mother and sister.

And now for the boys…

Killian

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Killian is your standard gorgeous bad boy with a bit of a checkered past. He shows up out of nowhere for Dash and Freya’s engagement party, yet he and Freya have been dreaming about each other for weeks. It’s all very romantic and stuff. I like this guy simply because I like this archetype character. Spike from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Damon from Vampire Diaries… I like these guys. I’m ok with that. What makes Killian a little different is his relationship with Freya, which we have only just begun to scratch the surface of, so I won’t leave too many spoilers. Honestly, the other men who come and go in this show are more interesting to me, but Killian is pretty, and he brings a good sense of humor, so I’m curious to see where they take his story, especially with season 2.

I also really like this photo of them, deciding to just be friends:

KillianFreya

 

Dash

Dash

We have the stereotypical bad boy, and Dash is our stereotypical good boy. This is probably the biggest flaw in this show – these two stereotypes, and the fact that they’re in love with the same girl (this is season 1 we’re talking about though, things have changed in season 2 in many ways). Luckily we get some variety with the other women and the men in their lives, and by the end of season one, the Gardiner boys become very interesting indeed. Season 2 will be much more interesting watching their stories unfold, I think. But the best way I can describe Dash? He’s the Angel (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) or Stefan (Vampire Diaries) equivalent. Aside from his silly name, Dash is set up to be the “perfect guy.” He’s a doctor, he’s extremely wealthy, and cares deeply for Freya, his bride-to-be. If he stayed like that for the entire show, he would be extremely boring. But as the first season progresses, he slowly unravels, and we start to get a better picture of who he really is. I honestly didn’t find him interesting until the very end of the season, but I was in this show for the strong women characters to begin with anyway, so it didn’t bother me too much.

In addition to these excellent characters, the show has my favorite blend of drama and humor. Plus magic that ALWAYS has a price, which they continue to state clearly when the girls are first learning how to use their magic. One final point – this show is very sex-positive. These women are very clear about not judging each other for their habits (or lack thereof) and that includes the older two women, which in my experience is a bit of a rarity. In my humble opinion, this is a well-done show, if cheesy at times the way Charmed was sometimes cheesy. My only other complaints are that sometimes really strange things happen that remind me of Torchwood in a bad way, and it’s possible the guys could be better at acting. I’m sure people with a more critical eye than mine could find more flaws, but on the whole, I really enjoy this show, and I can’t wait to see more with strong leading ladies. And now I must leave you – as I’ve got another episode of Witches of East End to watch.

Another fabulous cover by Damonza! What do you think?

NINE BY NIGHT

Nine By Night-E-BOOK Cover2

 

About NINE BY NIGHT

“From vampires to empaths, to the grim reaper himself, this bundle will keep you on the edge of your seat. I dare you to try and put it down!” SHANNON MAYER – author of THE RYLEE ADAMSON NOVELS and THE NEVERMORE TRILOGY

Nine books. Nine bestselling authors. Nine heroines that take names—and chances—while confronting dark foes, whether by force of arms or magic, that threaten their entire world.

Over two-thousand pages of epic reading await! Let the adventures begin.

From NYT and USA Today Bestselling Author, SM REINE, WITCH HUNT –– Shaman on the run. Isobel Stonecrow speaks with the dead…for the right price. She brings closure to the bereaved and heals broken hearts. But when she resurrects someone for the wrong client, she ends up on the OPA’s most wanted list.

From NYT and USA Today Bestselling author, CJ ELLISSON, DEATH’S SERVANT –– Jonathan Winchester has clashed with his werewolf alpha one too many times. He returns to Virginia to find work and meets a young waitress, Raine. As their relationship progresses, Jon’s embroiled in more intrigue than he bargained for and a danger bigger than he can handle.

From bestselling author, LINDSAY BUROKER, TORRENT –– When Delia chose to major in archaeology, she imagined herself as the female Indiana Jones of the Southwest. She didn’t imagine herself stumbling across decapitated bodies in old mine shafts or learning that monsters are real…

From bestselling author, ANTHEA SHARP, SPARK –– What if a high-tech game was a gateway to the treacherous Realm of Faerie? Superstar gamer Spark Jaxley’s life might look easy, but she’s part of an elite few who guard a shocking secret; the Realm of Faerie exists, and its dark magic is desperate for a foothold in the mortal world.

From bestselling authors BOONE BRUX and CJ ELLISSON, DEATH TIMES TWO –– The V V Inn has a ghost problem. New grim reaper, Lisa Carron, accepts the job. She quickly learns the hotel is full of the dearly departed—and she’s working for vampires. Throw in Asa, a young vamp hot enough to melt the Arctic ice, and Lisa realizes she’s way out of her element.

From bestselling author, JC ANDRIJESKI, ROOK: ALLIE’S WAR EPISODES 1-4 –– Like most humans, Allie distanced herself from Seers, a race of human-like beings discovered on Earth. Yanked out of her life by the mysterious Revik, Allie finds out her blood may not be as “human” as she thought, the world is nothing like it appears to be…and she has more in common with Seers than she ever wanted to believe.

From bestselling author, ANNIE BELLET, JUSTICE CALLING –– Gamer. Nerd. Sorceress. Jade Crow lives a quiet life running her comic book and game store in Wylde, Idaho. After twenty-five years fleeing from a powerful sorcerer who wants to eat her heart and take her powers, quiet suits her just fine. Surrounded by friends who are even less human than she is, Jade figures she’s finally safe. As long as she doesn’t use her magic…

From bestselling author, JESI LEA RYAN, ARCADIA’S GIFT –– Teenager Arcadia (Cady) Day’s family tragedy unleashes a hidden power. After experiencing what can only be called a psychic episode, her home life crumbles. As her emotional control slips away, Cady begins to suspect that her first psychic episode was just the beginning…

From Urban Fantasy author, KARA LEGEND, WILD NIGHT ROAD –– One innocent hex sets off a chain reaction of trouble among the shifters of the Kinraven that threatens war between werewolves, seraphim and witches. Lilith Darke will do anything to be free of her seraphim master. All hell breaks loose when rival packs face off only to discover a new, deadly threat that will take all their magick to survive.

NINE BY NIGHT releases 8/03/2014 on Amazon, Smashwords, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and other e-book retailers.

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Nine By Night

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This week I was asked to host a cover reveal for Nine by Night, a collection of nine urban fantasy novels. I love this cover!! I’ve been sitting on an advanced review copy for a couple of days and I was to excited when I saw the cover photo in my inbox. It’s gorgeous.

I’ve already read Jesi Lea Ryan’s Arcadia’s Gift and reviewed it on Goodreads. I can’t express enough how much I love that novel, and its sequel Arcadia’s Curse. I am absolutely dying to read the conclusion to the Arcadia trilogy, which is set to come out relatively soon, so stay tuned for news on that.

I’ve just started reading SM Reine’s Witch Hunt, and I’m already hooked. I’ll review each of these as I finish them, but I have to say I can barely wait to read Annie Bellet’s Justice Calling. A heroine who’s a gamer nerd sorceress? If that was all the description said, that would be enough to get my attention.

In other reviews, my apartment complex here in Houston occasionally has food trucks. Tonight’s was Korean-Mexican (“korean cuisine with mexican in-between!”). It was absolutely delicious. I ordered some kind of Korean BBQ burrito thing and with the first bite it was like an explosion of flavor in my mouth. Definitely give it a try if you’re in town and try not to be too skeptical!

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