Spotlight Wednesday: GOL (The Legends of Ansu) by J. W. Webb

GOLCOVER

Gol. A continent on the brink of destruction. Once a mighty kingdom, now six provinces torn apart by treacherous barons. In one province two young lovers strive to stay together when all else prises them apart. Lissane and Erun must survive to guide their people through the coming storm. The odds are stacked against them. Erun, dreamer and fool, is chosen for a dark path. Whilst Lissane is given away by her father the baron to wed the brutal son of a rival ruler.

Meanwhile, at the far side of the world a sorcerer has freed the fire demon, Ashmali, setting off a
chain of events that could ultimately bring about Gol’s long foretold ruin. Caught between rising
seas, civil war, and approaching fire the continent’s time is fast running out.

Gol features beautiful sketches and maps by Tolkien illustrator, Roger Garland. It opens the doors on a new epic fantasy series titled Legends of Ansu. Within its content lies an sweeping tale of love, hatred, vengeance and destruction. In Gol the high courage of a few individuals is all that stands against the will of fickle gods and treachery of men.

Purchase at Amazon.com

J.W.WEBB

Learn more about J. W. Webb at  Legendsofansu.com

 

Author Linda J. White Shares The Tiger’s Cage

Linda-J.-White

Linda J. White is the author of multiple FBI thrillers including the HOLT Medallion-winning “Seeds of Evidence.” She lives in Fauquier County, Virginia with her husband Larry, who worked at the FBI Academy for over 27 years. When she’s not writing she likes playing with dogs and her grandchildren and going to the beach.

Her latest book is the suspense novel, The Tiger’s Cage.

For More Information

  • Visit Linda J. White’s website.

 

About the Book:

The-Tigers-Cage

FBI Special Agent Tom Donovan is about to nail the drug lord he’s been investigating when Angel Ramos does the unthinkable: He kidnaps Tom’s eighteen-year-old son, Kenny. The FBI responds with a powerful show of force but Ramos manages to elude them. Tom is furious, his wife is terrified, and their son is forced to confront evil face-to-face.

Tom devises a brilliant plan to rescue his son, but on a windy, rainy night in Washington, his past collides with his present in a dramatic turn of events, and Tom discovers his greatest strength isn’t his at all.

The Tiger’s Cage is a story of courage, faith, and endurance in a violent world.

For More Information

  • The Tiger’s Cage is available at Amazon.
  • Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.

 

Excerpt

Chapter 1

  Tuesday, January 12, 1993

“Ride, Kenny?”

“No, thanks. It’s a good night to be outside.”

“See you tomorrow at school, then.”

“You bet.” Kenneth Patrick Donovan turned toward his home, just a mile away. His suburban Northern Virginia neighborhood was quiet, peaceful, softly illuminated by lights from living room windows spilling onto front yards in gentle squares. Four inches of snow from yesterday’s storm lay on the ground, fluffy and clean, like a down comforter shaken and re-laid on the earthy bed.

No one was out, not even the neighborhood dogs, and Kenny drank in the solitude like a tonic. He couldn’t get the meeting out of his mind. Amazing. He was learning so much. Shoving his hand in the pocket of his high school letter jacket, he fingered a little metal cross. He looked up at the starry January sky, and it seemed he could see forever.

He didn’t notice the white Chevy van as it came down the street. He heard a noise. A small alarm went off in his head. He started to turn around, too late.

They grabbed him from behind. Kenny’s head snapped back and fear exploded in his belly. He pulled against their hands, and sucked in a panicked breath as someone shoved a bandanna in his mouth. He couldn’t breathe! The night disappeared under a knit hat.

“Hurry!”

They pushed him toward the street and he braced his legs, resisting, until a sharp crack on his head impelled him forward. He stumbled. They grabbed him by his collar and threw him onto the ribbed metal floor of a van.

He tried to get up. They held him down, forcing his hands together behind him. “Tighter!” he heard one of them say, and zip ties tightened around his wrists. A new wave of terror ran through him. No, no! He fought wildly, like an animal in a trap, the plastic cutting into his flesh, and he made it to his knees. Then a blow to the back of his neck made him collapse and he lay helplessly on the floor, trembling with fear and exertion.

The side door slammed shut. Kenny felt the van accelerate. A musty, heavy tarp dropped on top of him, suffocating him. He moved around, trying to find an air space. He got a sharp punch in the ribs.

“Stay still!” a voice commanded.

Oh, God, he thought, help me! Who are these people? And every muscle in his eighteen-year-old body began shaking uncontrollably.

Night had fallen like a magician’s cape over the streets of Alexandria, Virginia. The bright lights were scattered like multi-colored sequins over the darkness. As FBI Special Agent Tom Donovan worked his way through the congested downtown, he looked at the glittery night with a jaded eye. He stood close enough to the stage to see the magician’s tricks, to know that behind the shimmering lights were dark pools of despair—shadowy alleys and dirty streets where twenty minutes of euphoria could be bought in a vial for ten bucks and paid for, forever, with your soul.

As he drove along, Tom rehearsed the details of his testimony for the next day’s grand jury over and over in his mind. Catching Angel Ramos’s right-hand man, Miguel Camacho, with a kilo of coke was a stroke of luck even he couldn’t have anticipated. An indictment would up the odds of flipping Camacho. His testimony against Ramos could bring the drug kingpin down once and for all.

Satisfied at that thought, Tom flipped on the radio to a sports-talk show. Callers were re-hashing the Buffalo Bills game against Pittsburgh on Sunday. He had no dog in that fight, and changed stations. “Today, President Bush announced that …” yada yada. Punching that off, he inserted a cassette. Upbeat Celtic music. Perfect.

Twenty minutes later, Tom pulled into the garage of his Fairfax County home. As he did, he felt a vague uneasiness, confirmed by Cathy’s glare as he walked into the kitchen. “Hey!” he said.

“Where’s Kenny? I expected you both to be home when I got here.”

Tom’s mind began racing. Where was he … when was he … was he supposed to …

“You were supposed to pick him up!” she said. “You forgot, didn’t you?” She had dark hair, like him, but her eyes were blue. When she was angry, they seemed to develop flecks of gold, like sparks from a blacksmith’s hammer.

“Tonight?”

Cathy rolled her eyes and turned away.

Tom cursed under his breath. “Sorry. I’ll get him now. Where is he?”

“He gave you that information. You were the one who was supposed to get him.”

“Oh, right.” Tom began patting his pockets, searching until he found it—a scrap of paper with an address. “Got it! I’ll be right back!”

But when he arrived at the house on Littlefield Street, the two-story white Colonial looked dark except for one small light in an upstairs bedroom. Puzzled, he jogged up to the front porch and rang the bell. A minute later, a man in a plaid bathrobe answered it. “I’m Tom Donovan,” he said to the man. “I was supposed to pick up my son, Kenny. I guess I’m late.”

A teenaged boy came partway down the stairs. “Mr. Donovan? Kenny said he’d walk home.”

Tom frowned. “What time did he leave?”

“All the kids were gone by, what, nine, Jason?” the dad asked his son.

Tom glanced at his watch. Nine-twenty-five.

“Yes, sir. Coach said we had to be in bed by nine thirty, so Terry kicked everybody out at nine.”

“Thanks,” Tom said. “Sorry to bother you.” He turned and stepped off the front porch. The door closed behind him. How far was he from home? A mile? Two? Shouldn’t Kenny be home by now?

Kenny struggled to stay calm. Within minutes, the van stopped, the door slid open and strong hands jerked him to his feet, pulling him out. He twisted again, trying to get away, but the grips holding him tightened. Heart pounding, Kenny tried to see, tried to hear, tried to figure out where he was. He could feel pavement under his feet, and a little loose gravel. The knit hat covering his eyes seemed a little floppy and by twisting his head just the right way, he could see just a bit of the ground.

What now? He was breathing hard. He heard a car door slam and footsteps, and then he smelled something. A cigar? He looked down. A pair of cowboy boots appeared right in front of his feet. A shiver went through him.

The cigar smoker pulled Kenny’s wallet out of his back pocket. “Donovan. Muy bien.”

That voice … did he know that voice?

The man laughed. “Your father will be missing his boy, no?”

Kenny could smell the cigar, so close.

Then the man jerked open Kenny’s letter jacket. He ran his hand down the young man’s ribcage. Kenny reacted, pulling against the hands holding him. He twisted his head right and left, finally dislodging the bandanna in his mouth. He sucked the cold night air into his lungs. “What do you want?” he cried out, his chest heaving. “Who are you?”

The man hit him, hard, across the mouth. Kenny’s head jerked to the side and he felt his lip split against his teeth. He swallowed blood.

“Shut up.” The man grabbed Kenny by the throat, pressing his thumb into Kenny’s neck. “Just shut up.” He released his hold. “My muchachos, they are bored.” He switched to Spanish. “Haz lo que quieras.” Do whatever you want.

The snakes in Tom’s belly were starting to slither. He drove slowly through the empty neighborhood, then pulled into the garage and entered the house. “Cathy!” he bellowed. “Is he here? Did he come home?”

Cathy emerged from the family room. “No. He wasn’t at that house? Where is he?”

“I have no idea. He told them he’d walk home.”

“That’s ridiculous! Where could he be?”

The anger in her voice masked fear. Tom knew that. “I don’t know.” He ran his hand through his hair. “Where does he go? What does he do? McDonald’s? Where do I look for him?”

Cathy turned. She crossed her arms. “He doesn’t go anywhere, not during wrestling season.”

“Except for this group.”

“That started just a few months ago. You’d know that if you were ever around!”

“Does he have a girlfriend?”

“Not that he’s told me.” Cathy raised her chin, and in that small gesture, Tom saw vulnerability.

“Look, Cathy, there’s probably some good explanation for all this. Kenny’s a good kid.” They’d gone through some tough times with their son when he was younger, but Tom thought those were behind them. “Maybe he stopped to help someone with homework. I’ll go back and get the names of the kids he was with. Then I’ll check around the neighborhood.”

“I’m going to look, too.”

“No. You stay here.” His voice sounded firmer than he intended.

Cathy’s mouth tightened into a line. At first, Tom thought she was going to argue with him. “Someone needs to be here when he shows up,” he added. “You can page me.”

She glared at him. “Fine. Do it your way. Just find him, Tom!” Her voice caught, and she walked swiftly out of the room.

Kenny sensed several men around him. Five, maybe six guys. What were they going to do?

The first blow slammed into his gut, and Kenny’s breath exploded out of his lungs. Then came another, higher, and to the right, and pain screamed through his ribs. Another blow landed, and another. He felt himself slipping, sinking to his knees, and the blows became kicks against his body, his face, his legs. “No!” he breathed. “No!” And then the blackness began to envelop him. He collapsed and fell, the loose stones of the parking lot studding his face.

He was a little boy again, on his first bike with hand brakes, a silver Columbia five-speed. He was so proud! He whizzed down the hill past his grinning, clapping father, his hair blowing in the wind. He owned the sidewalk! He was king of the hill!

But he was going too fast. He squeezed too hard, locked the brakes, and sailed over the handlebars, his mouth wide with surprise. He hit the ground hard.

He was hurt. Crying. Scared. His dad ran up. “Kenny. Son. You okay? I’m here. It’s all right.” He felt his dad’s hands touching him, saw his steel-gray eyes grow soft with caring. “You’re going to be fine, son.”

Dad’s here. He was safe now. His father’s strong love could fix anything.

Kenny Donovan turned his head. Asphalt. Stones. Ice. Dad wasn’t here. He was on his own.

Tom steered his car back to the house on Littlefield Street, parked, rang the doorbell, and apologized when the dad in his robe answered again. “He’s not home yet. I need to know who my son was with,” Tom explained. “I need names.”

The dad motioned him in and, with Jason’s help, compiled a list of eighteen kids and their phone numbers. “Thank you,” Tom said, as he stood up to leave.

“I hope he shows up soon,” the dad said. “I’m sure he will.”

Tom nodded. Then he looked Jason’s dad in the eye. “Why was he here, anyway?”

“FFA.”

Tom blinked.

“Fairfax Fellowship of Athletes.”

What kind of … when did Kenny get hooked up with them? His jaw tightened. “Thanks.” Tom started to leave then asked, “Do you mind if I use your phone?” He’d have the office page his FBI partner. There was no one he’d rather have with him right now than Jack McRae.

New Release: Secrets and Scars by Dori Lavelle

Book 3

 

The nightmare is far from over.

Alvin Jones, Chloe’s husband from hell, is hot on their trail.

Her nose is picking up on his scent. Her skin feels the heat of his rage. Her tongue tastes death—hers and Owen’s.

Owen Firmin has rescued her from her worst nightmare, but will they be able to cross a dangerous island filled with traps and other hazards in order to reach Owen’s yacht, and their only real chance of escape?

Chloe has learned the hard way that life is full of surprises. The next one could be waiting just around the corner.

**WARNING: This book contains dark themes, including violence that could trigger emotional distress in readers.**

AMAZON PURCHASE LINK: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01GK56WXW

GOODREADS: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30356627

 author button

Dori Lavelle, is a mother, wife, and a sucker for happy-ever-afters and mint chocolate. Growing up, Dori read a lot, and when she wasn’t happy with a particular ending, she wrote a different one, just for herself. Before long, she was writing stories when she should have been doing schoolwork. The time has come for her to share the stories she cooks up in her head.

 Contact Links:

Website : http://www.dorilavelle.com/

Newsletter : http://eepurl.com/Ycsu5

Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dori-Lavelle/1423314904547560

Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7348559.Dori_Lavelle

Twitter: https://twitter.com/DoriLavelle

Email: Dorilavelle@gmail.com

 

 

Author’s Bethany-Kris and London Miller Share A Sneak Peek of Where The Sun Hides

Where the sun hides

Purchase (#FREE with #KindleUnlimited): Amazon

Synopsis: In places where the sun can hide, the darkest betrayals are made.

Violet Gallucci and Kazimir Markovic have grown up in the same city, but on opposite sides of the game they call life—Violet, an Italian principessa della mafia, and Kaz, a Russian Bratva heir. Lines have been drawn, and they know not to cross them.

Their paths crossed once, a long time ago, but when they meet again, the territory and rules set out by their families that have kept them separated seem to bleed away.

She’s more than her last name …

He’s more than a Russian …

But secrets from the past—and the people determined to keep them hidden—have other plans for Violet and Kaz.

Rival families.

One city.

Star-crossed lovers.

They should be enemies.

It could mean war.

This is just the beginning …

From authors Bethany-Kris (The Chicago War) and London Miller (Volkov Bratva) comes a thrilling, sexy new series—Seasons of Betrayal. Where the Russians and Italians clash in culture, mafia … and love.

EXCERPT #1

 

“What did she take?”

Violet clenched her teeth. “I don’t know. That’s why we were leaving.”

“Does she need a hospital?”

“She needs a bed and water,” Nicole interjected.

“You need stitches,” he said, glancing down at Nicole’s arm. “You’re bleeding all over my couch.”

Nicole just glared.

Violet held back her grin, knowing it wasn’t the time.

“We’re really sorry,” Violet said, hoping to appease to the guy so he would let them go without any more trouble. “We just wanted a good time—this club is supposed to be the hottest thing on Coney right now, and someone must have spiked our friend’s drink. We don’t want problems. We really don’t want the cops involved, so if that’s what you’re worried about, don’t be.”

The man’s lips drew into a thin, grim line as he looked the girls over. “I will make sure you all get home safe and sound.”

Violet didn’t like that idea at all. She could still hear her father in the back of her head, repeating his warnings. Keep out of Coney Island, don’t go too deep into Brooklyn, and stay the hell away from Russians.

It was more likely that whoever this guy was didn’t have anything to do with the kinds of Russians her father demanded she stay away from, but Violet knew where the lines were drawn with Alberto Gallucci. She often tested them, occasionally even jumping over them when her father wasn’t looking.

Russians were not one of them.

“We can take a cab,” Violet said. “We took one here.”

The man didn’t look all too impressed with that idea. He opened his mouth to speak, but the office door opened from behind Violet, stopping whatever he was going to say.

“Everything good, brat?”

Violet turned fast on her heel at the new voice.

And froze.

He was tall—over six feet—and built like he ran a ten-K every day. The black suit he wore hugged his frame, but the jacket was left unbuttoned, showcasing a white silk dress shirt that was pulled taut across his chest.

The man was cut.

Violet swallowed hard and met the man’s stare.

Gray eyes, like the other man’s but more intense, looked her up and down with a slow, predatory fashion. His face was framed by a strong jaw dotted with a couple days’ worth of scruff and sharp cheekbones. His lips, full enough to draw in her attention, curled up at the edges into a grin of sorts.

She thought it looked more like a smirk.

He raised a hand and ran it through his short, dark hair that was tapered at the sides but a little longer down the middle.

But it wasn’t so much the action that caught her attention, but the black ink marked on his hand. An upturned spider that looked to be crawling up under the sleeve of his suit jacket rested upon a web.

Her gaze cut back to his when he dropped his hand back to his side.

He looked familiar. She was sure that she should know him, but in her semi-drunken state, she was coming up with nothing.

The man’s smirk quickly faded into a mask of cool, calm nothingness. He looked past her to the man behind her and said one word that chilled her entirely.

“Gallucci.”

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About Bethany-Kris

Bethany-Kris

Bethany-Kris is a Canadian author, lover of much, and mother to three young sons, one cat, and two dogs. A small town in Eastern Canada where she was born and raised is where she has always called home. With her boys under her feet, snuggling cat, barking dogs, and a hubby calling over his shoulder, she is nearly always writing something … when she can find the time.

To keep up-to-date with new releases from Bethany-Kris, sign up to her New Release Newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/bf9lzD

Website • Blog •  Twitter • Facebook • Goodreads •  Pinterest • Mailing List • Amazon Author Page

About London Milleronte

lmWith a degree in Creative Writing, London Miller has turned pen to paper, creating riveting fictional worlds where the bad guys are sometimes the good guys. Her debut novel, In the Beginning, is the first in the Volkov Bratva Series. She currently resides in Atlanta, Georgia with her husband and two puppies, where she drinks far too much Sprite, and spends her nights writing.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Newsletter | Amazon Author Page