Rebel Storm Rider and a recipe (!) by Jennifer Macaire

I’m excited to host Jennifer Macaire and her newest release on my blog. She was kind enough to share a recipe with me and my readers – how cool is that!

Now on to the intergalactic herders and their story:

When intergalactic herders Carl and Ruby Cadet find a Raider baby in a wrecked spaceship, they decide to keep her as their own daughter. Raiders are considered the scourge of the galaxy and the Federation, never having captured a Raider alive, demands they give her up. When Carl and Ruby refuse, the Federation declares them outlaws and sends Raider hunters after them.
The hunters have been given an order: capture the baby alive but eliminate Carl and Ruby if necessary. Despite the danger, the young herders decide to go rogue and flee. Their only hope of saving themselves and the baby Raider will be the space-travelling horses, and the mysterious Horse Passages.

NOW AVAILABLE!
Rebel Storm Rider is now available here at Evernight Teen or as a kindle at Amazon.com. for 3,99$.
rebel-storm-rider-evernightpublishing-jayaheer2016-3drender-ereader-sml

It’s winter, and the Herders hunker down around the campfire. Soup is a favorite during winter months – root vegetables abound on the planets, and carrots are a favorite. What Herder doesn’t have a jar of peanut butter in his saddle pack ? (Allergies excepted, of course!) This soup can be made with or without the peanut butter – but if made without, you can use half a cup of heavy cream to make the soup delightful !
Bright carrot peanut butter soup to add sunshine to a cold gray day !
Ingredients

  • 1/2 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, diced
  • 500g carrots, scrubbed (or peeled) and chopped (about 4 cups)
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 2 cups Veggie Stock + 2 cups water
  • 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter

Instructions

  1. Heat a large pot over medium heat.
  2. Dice onion and garlic. Add to pot with 1 Tbsp melted butter or oil. Add carrots and onions & cook for 5 minutes. Add garlic and wait until it’s golden.
  3. Season with a healthy pinch each salt and pepper, then add veggie stock and 2 cups of water and stir.
  4. Bring to a low boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Cover and cook for 20 minutes, or until veggies are tender (test by cutting a larger piece of carrot in half – it should cut with ease).
  5. Transfer to a blender (or use an immersion blender) and blend until smooth and creamy. (Cover with a towel in case your lid leaks any soup while blending.)
  6. Add peanut butter and blend thoroughly.
  7. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. For a touch of added sweetness, add a Tbsp or so of brown sugar or maple syrup.
  8. Enjoy !You can find Jennifer Macaire’s blog here, and her author site is here!

That recipe came just in time for the colder months, didn’t it? I’m adding peanut butter on my next shopping list so I can try making the soup soon.

A Love That Disturbs Tour Banner

 

alovethatdisturbs1lA Love That Disturbs

by Medeia Sharif

 

Evernight Teen Publishing/60k words

Interracial/Romance/YA/Contemp/LGBT(Lesbian)

 

Maysa Mazari is alarmed by her mother’s talk about arranged marriage. As a hijab-wearing Pakistani-American, she wants to find love on her own. Her judgmental Muslim clique has protected her from racist taunts, although the leader is turning on her as Maysa strays from the group because of her attraction to Haydee.

 Haydee Gomez is a former gang member and juvenile detention student. Now living with a clean-cut aunt, she wants to turn her life around, even though one person will never let her forget her roots—Rafe, her abusive pimp. Haydee attempts to pull away from a life of prostitution when she develops feelings for Maysa, although Rafe isn’t willing to give her up too easily.

 Finding themselves in danger from Maysa’s friends and Haydee’s pimp, it’s apparent their love disturbs everyone around them as they fight to stay together. 

 

Buy Links:  Evernight Teen   Amazon   ARe    BookStrand

 

 

EXCERPT

 At least Rafe wouldn’t bother her for a few hours. He knew it was her first day in a new school. Haydee blew her nose, wiped her eyes, and left the bathroom. She walked into first period English and handed the teacher the pass. Students stared. A few had tattoos peeking from the edges of sleeves and shorts, but nothing like what she had. She felt like The Tattooed Woman and avoided staring back at them. She wasn’t in alternative school anymore, where most students had a nasty attitude about anything related to academics. The students in front of her had their books open and had been reading and writing before she walked in. They weren’t looking to fight her and she wasn’t going to fight them.

“Let me write your name down,” the teacher said. “I’ll make a folder for your work. How do you say your name? Heidi?”

“No, it’s Hay-dee,” she corrected Ms. Tookes. “Haydee Gomez.”

Ms. Tookes wrote her name on a notepad and nodded toward an empty desk, so Haydee sat down in a seat in the back with a textbook. The assignment was on the board, but Haydee had trouble seeing. She had lost or broken so many of her eyeglasses in the past that she stopped wearing them. She was slightly nearsighted and lived with her blurry vision just fine. Tomorrow she’d come to class on time and get a seat in the front.

She continued to receive some stares, but then students went back to work.

Feeling like she was on display, Haydee twirled the drawstrings of her hoodie, chewed the inside of her mouth, and smoothed down the baby hairs on her forehead. The door opened and she was grateful for another distraction. It was Maysa, her pink-and-green silk scarf glistening under the fluorescent lights. Haydee’s vision sharpened, as if she could see Maysa clearly, while everything around her was fuzzy. Maysa caught Haydee’s gaze and smiled before turning to Ms. Tookes. “May I take a few pictures of the students working?”

The teacher smiled back. “Take all the pictures you want.”

Maysa had a sunny, innocent demeanor. Haydee wondered what it would be like to have her life. She must have two parents taking care of her. She probably had brothers and sisters who were as nice as she was. Her parents were strict, if she had to cover her head like that, but they most likely were loving. Haydee’s curiosity intensified. She needed to know more about Maysa, who was walking to the back of the room where she was.

“Can I take a picture of you reading the textbook?” Maysa asked.

“Sure,” Haydee said. Anything. She wanted to please this girl. Haydee opened to a random page. It was a Shakespearean sonnet, which was like another language to her. Haydee liked to read, but not classic works. She enjoyed romance books and read any that she could get her hands on. They helped her escape from her own reality by taking her someplace else for a few hours.

Flashes sparked as Maysa took a few shots of Haydee. “You’re very photogenic.”

“Really?” Haydee looked up. “Let me see.”

Maysa neared her and held the back of the camera to Haydee’s face. Looking at the screen, Haydee saw she didn’t look too bad. Her bun was messy in a stylish way, and her head was tilted down to her book. Her cheekbones were sharp, and her right side was on display—not the left one with the black eye. “It’s a nice shot.”

Maysa smiled, and Haydee blinked, not knowing what else to say or do. She wanted to keep Maysa talking so that she wouldn’t leave right away. Because of the picture taking, a few other students had started talking and sneaked looks at the two of them. Haydee knew they must seem like an odd pair interacting with each other. Maysa showed her the next few pictures, at different angles. “I have to go now and get to the next classroom,” she said.

“Oh, all right.” Her gaze was riveted to Maysa’s slender form as she walked out the door.

Haydee’s phone vibrated again. When the teacher wasn’t looking, she slid it out of her pocket.

Got a nice dress for you tonight

Come to my place later so you can try it on

Red, your perfect color

And just like that, the moment was ruined. She shoved her phone back into her pocket. Like she needed another reminder of everything that was wrong in her life. She gritted her teeth and made fists, then forced herself to loosen her hands. She didn’t want to think about Rafe anymore, but how could she not? He was like a virus in her system and she couldn’t get rid of him. She admitted that he took care of her: he beat up johns who mistreated her, handed over any money he promised her, and challenged anyone who bothered her on the rough streets of Miami.

If it hadn’t been for Rafe, she might have been dead at one point, because one of the johns locked her in a bathroom, threatening to kill her later, and he took care of the situation. There were the existing issues of earning money and a degree of safety, but surely she could find another line of work. How would she tell Rafe that she wanted out without having his temper explode? She had seen him cut a man’s face with a razor. Would he do the same to her?

 

Medeia Sharif was kind enough to share a bit about how she had written A love that disturbs. This is what she has to say about gritty writing:

 

For A LOVE THAT DISTURBS, I had to go to a place in my head that I didn’t want to visit. It’s the dark side. I went to this place because I tortured my characters. There’s a light at the end of the tunnel, but Haydee and Maysa go through so much to reach it.

The research material for the manuscript was not easy to immerse myself in. I perused websites, watched videos, and read books to place myself into the characters’ situations. Even when I was away from the research material, my mood was blackened. It was hard for a funny or light person, book, or movie to brighten my day.

I can say that this mindset was essential in writing the book. Even though Haydee and Maysa have beautiful moments, they also have intensely horrible ones. Between the research material and my mood, I was able to capture these dark points in the novel. Based on what early readers told me, I got the job done.

Being an avid reader, I don’t often think about what writers go through for books that have touched my spirit. After writing this book, I now know that the most difficult subject matters had to come from the pit of a writer’s being. Despite my not having gone through Haydee and Maysa’s sufferings, having taken my mind and heart there changed me during the month I researched the book, the month I wrote the book, and any time afterwards when I had to revise and edit. I don’t intend to make my readers feel bad or uncomfortable, but I do hope they feel the emotional impact of this novel.

 

 Author Bio:

author pic 2014Medeia Sharif was born in New York City and presently calls Miami her home. She received her master’s degree in psychology from Florida Atlantic University. Published through various presses, she writes middle grade and young adult short stories and novels. In addition to being a writer, she’s a public school teacher.

http://www.medeiasharif.com/

https://twitter.com/sharifwrites

https://www.instagram.com/sharifwrites/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4086531.Medeia_Sharif

 

 

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OfBloodandSnow banner

Blood is thicker than water, or so the story goes…

As fast as Cora can run, there is no escaping the blood that ties her to an ancient, evil past.

Amongst the bitter cold and driving snow, Nate must find a way to protect the love of his life, before the darkness falls and Cora is lost to him forever.

Buy links:

Amazon          Evernight Teen          ARe

 

14+ due to adult situations

Excerpt:

Why? Why did I need to go home? Other than for shelter, no one needed me there. Nate was all I had left. He was my reason for breathing and now the sole reason I got up every morning. The thought of harm coming to Nate made my heart hammer in my chest even harder. I jammed my hands deep into my coat pockets and focused on letting oxygen flow into my lungs.

In a single moment of clarity, I knew. I mean, I knew I loved Nate; that was without question. But if I didn’t have him in my life, it would be nothing but vacuous space.

I brushed snow off the fallen tree trunk and sat down. My thinking tree. Nate and I came here often to sit and talk, read, or watch the day simply pass us by. I piled up handful after handful of snow, heaping them on top of each other until a small avalanche rolled off the log and into a heap on the ground.

You are the key.

I leapt off the log landing two feet together, crushing the peak of snow beneath my shoes.

“Who’s there?” I shoved my fists into my hips and squared my shoulders. If there was someone there, they didn’t know who they were messing with.

The rustling of leaves came from above and a sprinkling of disturbed snow flittered down in front of my face. The flapping of beating wings and the call of a solitary bird echoed overhead. I caught sight of white feathers tipped with black before they disappeared above the trees and out of sight.

“Is anyone there?” I called out again, but I had a feeling I wouldn’t get a response.

The softness of the voice rolled around my head as I lingered amongst the tall trees on my way back home.

I am the key. The answer is within my blood. What did that mean?

***************

Danielle is visiting my blog today to reveal where she gets inspiration for her stories.

As an author, I am often asked where my ideas for stories come from.  This is never an easy question to answer but I’ll do my best to explain my thought processes when coming up with an idea for a novel or series.

I am going to take you through how I started writing one of my work in progress,  “Let Her Go”, a ghost love story based in Japanese mythology.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RBumgq5yVrA

It came to me when I was listening to the song “Let Her Go” by Passenger. There was something about the song that I connected with. I heard the character’s heartbreak of only realising love when it’s too late. The lyrics, “only know you love her when you let her go.” sparked a tiny thread of a story.

What if you loved someone but had to let them go?

From there, I go into full brainstorming mode. While listening to the song over and over, and over some more, characters reveal themselves, plot lines come out. I love the paranormal and am always fascinated by ghosts. The idea struck me, what if you were in love with a ghost? How would you deal with that? How would it even work?

Japanese mythology has always held a place in my heart and adore Japanese horror. One of my favourite myths is that of the yurei. Many Japanese believe that if a person dies tragically or under violent circumstances, their spirit returns and are kept from a peaceful afterlife until they are avenged. This is demonstrated beautifully in the movie Ju-On (The Grudge).

I had also fallen in love with a series of photographs taken by my brother while living in Japan, of the Cherry Blossom forest in full bloom.

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This young girl looked to me as if she lived in the blossom and was part of the forest herself. So I put the two together. The ghost of a young woman haunts the cherry blossom forest where she was violently murdered.

With any love story, you need a male hero, but I have quite a fond attachment to characters that are quite damaged. I wanted my main hero to have a history in Japanese mythology so I thought it a great idea for him to have Japanese heritage. His Japanese mother married an Australian man and moved to Australia but after the suicide of his girlfriend, goes to Japan to stay with relatives to help him recover.

So, once I have my characters in mind, I look for stock images that I can use legally and start building character profiles and so Reika and Michio Hunter were born.

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[ File # csp2684071, License # 2995589 ] Licensed through http://www.canstockphoto.com in accordance with the End User License Agreement (http://www.canstockphoto.com/legal.php) (c) Can Stock Photo Inc. / chaoss
 From there, I just start writing.

By the end of a completed manuscript the characters are as real as you and me and I know them better than I know myself. They are real people, reacting in their own way.

I just do the typing.

 

 

 

About the Author:

Danielle Belwater adores the concept of true love and that everyone has their Prince Charming or Snow White out there somewhere, even if they have to fight demons, ghosts, and wizards to find it.

Danielle has been having a love affair with words since she was young and in primary school, writing some rather imaginative tales. This love has followed her into adulthood. 

She lives in rural South Australia with her husband, young daughters and way too many animals to mention. She spends most of her time dreaming up characters, stories, ghostly tales, and watching Firefly re-runs.  She also cooks the odd meal for her family to avoid them looking like skeletons at official author functions!  

Danielle is passionate about reading and her interests include pretty much anything with words from rolling four volume epics to the daily newspaper.

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