wookiee

Happy New Year, all! I hope your holidays were amazing and renewing. We had a lovely staycation here, which included visits with family, an abundance of amazing food, much of it made by my husband (no one wants to eat my cooking…unless it’s pasta, and then all bets are off), a trip to Disney, hugging a Wookiee, a trip to Busch Gardens, and binge-watching Dexter. Yup, nothing says the holidays like blood and bodies. You heard it here first.

I’m still playing catch-up at the office, though, which is why I’m late shouting from the rafters about the US release of Genevieve Cogman’s latest Invisible Library novel, THE LOST PLOT, details below! To make up for it, I’m giving away one copy of the audio edition from Audible. Comment here for a chance to win. Winner will be chosen at Random on Monday, the 22nd!

 

lost plot us THE LOST PLOT by Genevieve Cogman, Book #4 in the Invisible Library series, Piatkus (UK), Ace (US)

Praise for the Invisible Library Novels

“Clever dialogue, time hopping through fun locales, plenty of action, and hints of fresh plotting will have readers looking forward to further Library missions.”—Library Journal

“Clever, creepy, elaborate world building and snarky, sexy-smart characters!”—N. K. Jemisin, author of The Fifth Season

“Ms. Cogman has opened a new pathway into our vast heritage of imagined wonderlands. And yet, as her story reminds us, we yearn for still more.”—The Wall Street Journal

“Funny, exciting, and oh-so-inspiring, this is the kind of fantasy novel that will have female readers everywhere gearing up for their own adventure.”—Bustle

After being commissioned to find a rare book, Librarian Irene and her assistant, Kai, head to Prohibition-era New York and are thrust into the middle of a political fight with dragons, mobsters, and Fae.

In a 1920s-esque New York, Prohibition is in force; fedoras, flapper dresses, and tommy guns are in fashion: and intrigue is afoot. Intrepid Librarians Irene and Kai find themselves caught in the middle of a dragon political contest. It seems a young Librarian has become tangled in this conflict, and if they can’t extricate him, there could be serious repercussions for the mysterious Library. And, as the balance of power across mighty factions hangs in the balance, this could even trigger war.

Irene and Kai are locked in a race against time (and dragons) to procure a rare book. They’ll face gangsters, blackmail, and the Library’s own Internal Affairs department. And if it doesn’t end well, it could have dire consequences on Irene’s job. And, incidentally, on her life…

In other news, the RT Book Award finalists have been announced, and I’m excited to see so much talent recognized! From The Knight Agency alone, we have the following nominees!

Historical/First Historical Romance – Amy Jarecki – THE HIGHLAND DUKE, Grand Central

Historical/Inide Digital Historical Romance – Cat Sebastian – THE RUIN OF A RAKE, Avon

Sci Fi & Fantasy/Epic Fantasy Novel

R.S. Belcher – QUEEN OF SWORDS, Tor

N.K. Jemisin – THE STONE SKY, Orbit

Paranormal & Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Worldbuilding

Nalini Singh SILVER SILENCE, Berkley

Ann Aguirre – THE DEMON PRINCE (pre-TKA)

Paranormal & Urban Fantasy/Urban Fantasy Novel – James Alan Gardner – ALL THOSE EXPLOSIONS WERE SOMEONE ELSE’S FAULT, Tor

Paranormal & Urban Fantasy/Urban Fantasy World Building – Chloe Neil – BLADE BOUND, Berkley

Congratulations to all!

Apparently, I’m Rafflecopter-challenged, so it took me much longer than it should have to create this giveaway in celebration of the release of FANGDEMONIUM, the fifth and final Vamped novel!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

There are a bunch of options for entering. It should be fast and fun! There will be two prizes, one a New Orleans prize pack with a signed copy of FANGDEMONIUM and one a $25 gift card to Amazon or Barnes & Noble (winner’s choice).

Details are all there on the Rafflecopter giveaway, but please do let me know if I’ve messed anything up, and I will correct post haste!

For your viewing pleasure, here’s the prize pack, along with a picture of my Vamplet Vlad modeling the mask, because he couldn’t help himself!

If you miss this giveaway, I hope to host another one in January once I catch up from the holidays with another New Orleans prize pack and likely another gift card as well!

In other new and exciting news, I’ve got my author newsletter up and running again. I hope you’ll sign up! (And if you do, be sure to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway, because this scores you points!)

So excited to share with you this week’s amazing new releases from my list!

killman creek KILLMAN CREEK by Rachel Caine, sequel to STILLHOUSE LAKE (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Indiebound)

Every time Gwen closed her eyes, she saw him in her nightmares. Now her eyes are open, and he’s not going away.

Gwen Proctor won the battle to save her kids from her ex-husband, serial killer Melvin Royal, and his league of psychotic accomplices. But the war isn’t over. Not since Melvin broke out of prison. Not since she received a chilling text…

You’re not safe anywhere now.

Her refuge at Stillhouse Lake has become a trap. Gwen leaves her children in the protective custody of a fortified, well-armed neighbor. Now, with the help of Sam Cade, brother of one of Melvin’s victims, Gwen is going hunting. She’s learned how from one of the sickest killers alive.

But what she’s up against is beyond anything she feared—a sophisticated and savage mind game calculated to destroy her. As trust beyond her small circle of friends begins to vanish, Gwen has only fury and vengeance to believe in as she closes in on her prey. And sure as the night, one of them will die.

the lost plot uk LOST PLOT by Genevieve Cogman (UK edition), #4 in the Invisible Library Series (Tor UK, Waterstones, Amazon UK)

After being commissioned to find a rare book, Librarian Irene and her assistant, Kai, head to Prohibition-era New York and are thrust into the middle of a political fight with dragons, mobsters, and Fae.

In a 1920s-esque New York, Prohibition is in force; fedoras, flapper dresses, and tommy guns are in fashion: and intrigue is afoot. Intrepid Librarians Irene and Kai find themselves caught in the middle of a dragon political contest. It seems a young Librarian has become tangled in this conflict, and if they can’t extricate him, there could be serious repercussions for the mysterious Library. And, as the balance of power across mighty factions hangs in the balance, this could even trigger war.

Irene and Kai are locked in a race against time (and dragons) to procure a rare book. They’ll face gangsters, blackmail, and the Library’s own Internal Affairs department. And if it doesn’t end well, it could have dire consequences on Irene’s job. And, incidentally, on her life…

US edition coming January 9th, but available now for pre-order (Ace, Barnes & Noble, Amazon)

On The Knight Agency list overall, we’ve got other exciting news!

Happy Book Birthday to IT TAKES TWO TO TUMBLE! Booklist calls Cat Sabastian, “A new force to be reckoned with in historical romances.”

And:

If you haven’t checked out Nalini Singh’s ROCK ADDICTION, the first book in the Rock Kiss series, now’s your chance. The e-book is FREE!

fifth seasonobelisk gatestone sky

I’m not saying you have to run out and grab N.K. Jemisin’s Broken Earth series right now – for yourself and everyone you know – I’m just saying that THE FIFTH SEASON is back on the USA Today Bestseller list this week two years after initial publication, that it won the 2016 Hugo Award for Best Novel, which the sequel, THE OBELISK GATE, won in 2017, and that the conclusion to the trilogy, THE STONE SKY is burning up all this years best of the year lists! Check it out:

Bustle‘s The 17 Best Fiction Books of 2017

NPR’s list of the Best Books of 2017

Barnes & Noble’s Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of 2017

The Guardian’s Best Science Fiction and Fantasy 0f 2017

Kirkus Reviews Best Fiction of 2017

 Amazon’s Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of 2017

AudioFile’s 2017 Best Audiobooks (no link here, since it seems to involve sign-up)

And while I’m at it, there’s Brit + Co’s list of 11 Sci-Fi Books to Binge While You Wait for “Star Wars Episode VIII, and THE STONE SKY came in at #4!

For your reading and gift buying pleasure, some awesome new releases out today!

Flame in the Dark FLAME IN THE DARK (Soulwood #3) by Faith Hunter (Ace, Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Books-a-million, Indiebound)

Set in the same world as Faith Hunter’s New York Times bestselling Jane Yellowrock novels, the third, thrilling Soulwood novel stars Nell Ingram, who draws her powers from deep within the earth.

Nell Ingram has always known she was different. Since she was a child, she’s been able to feel and channel ancient powers from deep within the earth. When she met Jane Yellowrock, her entire life changed, and she was recruited into PsyLED—the Homeland Security division that polices paranormals. But now her newly formed unit is about to take on its toughest case yet.

A powerful senator barely survives an assassination attempt that leaves many others dead—and the house he was visiting burns to the ground. Invisible to security cameras, the assassin literally disappears, and Nell’s team is called in. As they track a killer they know is more—or less—than human, they unravel a web of dark intrigue and malevolent motives that tests them to their limits and beyond.

 wyoming undercover WYOMING UNDERCOVER by Karen Whiddon (Harlequin, Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Books-a-million, Indiebound)

In need of redemption, a Wyoming rogue must free a woman from a deadly cult

Private investigator Jack Moreno lives and breathes for the riskiest missions. But not even his elite training can prepare him for his latest operation: going undercover to rescue a child from a cult. In the process, he meets Sophia Hannah, a young, vulnerable nurse, who is days away from a forced marriage to the cult leader.

Sophia doesn’t know life beyond the invisible walls around her—or that her searing attraction to a handsome stranger is built on lies. Desperate to escape her fate as the next wife to be used and discarded, she turns to Jack. But as they chase freedom, they’ll confront an even more dangerous threat: the truth.

On deck for December:

killman creekthe lost plot uk

 

KILLMAN CREEK by Rachel Caine, coming December 12th from Thomas & Mercer

THE LOST PLOT by Genevieve Cogman, coming December 14, 2017 from Macmillan in the UK and January 9, 2018 from Ace in the US

A bunch of exciting new releases out today for your reading pleasure!

resurrection game THE RESURRECTION GAME (A Shadowside Novel) by Michelle Belanger (Titan, Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Books-a-million, Indiebound)

Speeding through the night, Zack Westland seeks to put his nightmares behind him, at least for the moment. Yet when he stops for gas, the chittering sounds of cacodaimons remind him that there is no escape.

Calling upon his abilities as one of the Anakim—a tribe of angels trapped on Earth—Zack dispatches the hideous creatures and seeks to depart before the police can arrive. Then he sees something that chills him to the bone… A man wearing his face.

When a connection emerges between Zack’s doppelganger and a series of ritualistic murders, Zack must call upon his every ally to find this murderer before he can strike again. For all of them are targets, and the sadistic serial killer won’t stop until all are dead.

 dangerously divine DANGEROUSLY DIVINE (a Broken Riders Novel) by Deborah Blake (Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Books-a-million, Indiebound)

The author of the “wonderful” (Tamora Pierce) Baba Yaga novels and Dangerously Charming is back with a magically mesmerizing new tale about the dashing and daring Broken Riders…  

The Riders: Three immortal brothers who kept the Baba Yagas safe, now stripped of their summons to protect. But fate is not finished with them—and their new callings are even more powerful…  

Though his physical wounds have healed, Gregori Sun, the eldest of the Riders, remains in spiritual turmoil. His search for his mother, the one person able to heal his soul and save his life, is failing—until he crosses paths with a beautiful and fascinating librarian who might be the key to his salvation…

Ciera Evans’s bookish ways are just a guise. The product of a difficult past, she has dedicated her life to saving lost teens—by any means necessary. She works alone, but when a dark, brooding stranger proposes they team up to solve both their problems, she is tempted—in more ways than one…

After Ciera and Sun’s plans are derailed by dangerous enemies, they find themselves entangled in an ungodly affair—one that will force them to either find new strength together or be forever haunted by their pasts alone.

 

ST Titan Fortunes of War Star Trek: Titan: FORTUNE OF WAR by David Mack (Simon & Schuster, Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Books-a-million, Indiebound)

An original spin-off novel set in the popular Star Trek: The Next Generation universe from New York Times bestselling author David Mack.

Death slumbers in the ashes of silent planets, waiting to be awakened and unleashed…

Twenty years have passed since the interstellar scourge known as the Husnock were exterminated without warning by a being with godlike abilities. Left behind, intact but abandoned, their desolate worlds and derelict ships brim with destructive potential.

Now a discovery by a Federation cultural research team has drawn the attention of several ruthless factions. From black market smugglers to alien military forces, it seems every belligerent power in the quadrant hopes to capture the Husnock’s lethal technology.

All that stands between the galaxy and those who have come to plunder the cruelest secrets of the Husnock are Admiral William Riker, Captain Christine Vale, and the crew of the Starship Titan.

mass effect initiation Mass Effect: Initiation by N.K. Jemisin and Mac Walters (Titan, Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Books-a-million, Indiebound)

An original novel written by Hugo Award-winning author N. K. Jemisin and Mass Effect creative director Mac Walters

Lieutenant Cora Harper joined the Systems Alliance to develop and enhance her powerful biotic talents. She was assigned to the asari commando unit Talein’s Daughters, where she honed her abilities to become a skilled and deadly huntress.

Returning to Earth, Cora finds herself a stranger among other humans, and joins the Andromeda Initiative as Alec Ryder’s second-in-command. The mission will send 100,000 colonists on a one-way, 600-year-long journey into the unknown. When essential—and dangerous—tech is stolen, Cora is assigned to recover it before it can be used against the Initiative, and end the mission before it can begin.

 

 

 

Holdontothelight FB Banner

At the end of the new Justice League movie, Lois Lane does a voice over of the article she’s writing, in which she says, “The truest darkness is not the absence of light, but the fear that the light will never return.” This had me in tears, because it’s such a perfect description of depression. The hard part isn’t the sadness or the mourning or the pain, it’s the point at which all of those feelings stop, and you’re cut off emotionally from yourself and everyone around you. That’s when light and hope die.

But Lois Lane’s next words are equally true, “But the light always returns…Hope is real.”

It doesn’t feel like that at the time. Trust me, I know. A few years ago, drawing on personal experience, I wrote a book of my heart about a girl named Lisa who didn’t believe that things would get better, and about what her death did to those left behind. Her best friend, Vanessa, tries to make sense of things by reconstructing the last months of Lisa’s life. Someone takes a much more vengeful tack, taking on revenge against those who might have wronged Lisa. One death may very well beget others. This is fiction, of course, but it’s based on the real pain, loss and helplessness of those left behind when someone fails to hold onto the light.

When you’re at your worst, it can feel like you don’t matter and the world will be better off without you or that the pain is so great there’s no way to live with it. But you do matter to somebody. Very likely multiple somebodies. You touch more people than you know, and it does get better. It really does. It can be a long process, but that kind of darkness is no more sustainable than the blaring light.

I don’t have any magic formula. I wish I did, but I can tell you what I do to keep myself from falling into that abyss, after years of struggling with anxiety and depression.

-I give myself something to look forward to all the time. I love live music, theatre, costuming, and travel, not necessarily in that order. So whether it’s a concert, a festival, a play, or a gathering with friends, I make sure there’s always something on the calendar in the not too distant future that I look forward to, that I can’t bear to miss.

-I reach out to people. My inclination when I’m depressed is to go quiet, not to burden anyone with what I’m going through. This is dangerous. This is how you go down that rabbit hole of disconnect. I know that the best thing for me is to go out and do something. To distract myself and change my location to change my feelings. It doesn’t always work, and sometimes picking up the phone and going out are the hardest things in the world, but they’re important. And you don’t necessarily have to go out. You can talk by phone, you can have a friend or family member come to you, but DO NOT GO IT ALONE.

-Therapy. I never believed in therapy, probably because my first experience with it after a childhood trauma was so awful. But a good therapist, especially one versed in EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), which is a kind of cognitive reprogramming to help take down trauma, is priceless.

-Meds, I’ll admit it. I know that some people don’t want to be medicated, and I get that. I really do. But a very wise friend of mine once said to me, “If you had diabetes, you’d take insulin, right? How is this different?” That’s what changed my mind on the matter, and it’s changed so much else for me as well.

-Focus on the areas of your life not causing you pain. Sometimes you have to cut out some things or people who are sheer poison. It’s difficult, and there are people who will judge you for it, but you can’t live your life for how other people will perceive you. That’s a clear path to unhappiness. Do not let anyone convince you that it’s selfish to stand up for yourself or do what’s right for you.

-Self-care is crucial. Back in college, I trained to participate in a big brothers/big sisters program. Unfortunately, they had more need of big brothers than big sisters, and I never did get matched with someone, but I learned a lot. One story particularly stayed with me. It’s the story of a woman with a barrel of apples. She reaches into it every time there’s someone in need, someone who’s hungry. After a while, she scrapes the bottom and there are no more apples, because she was so busy helping others, she never took time to refill it. We’re like that. We need to refill our apple barrels so that we continuously have something of ourselves to give. When you look at it that way, self-care is anything but selfish.

The holidays are often especially hard for people. I get that too. All I can say is that I care. And that’s magnified a million quadrillion times for anyone close to you. Please, please, please, #HoldOnToTheLight. I promise, no matter how it feels, you are loved and valued. Taking yourself out of world turns over everyone’s apple barrels.

HoldOnToTheLight Website and other Posts

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