Friday, March 23, 2018

Blitz + Excerpt and Giveaway: Forest Beyond the Earth by Matthew S. Cox

The Forest Beyond the Earth
Matthew S. Cox
Publication date: February 6th 2018
Genres: Post-Apocalyptic, Young Adult
Under the watchful eye of the Mother Shrine, twelve-year-old Wisp ekes out a simple, but challenging life with Dad, foraging for food and losing herself in old books from the world that came before. She loves the Endless Forest ― except when the Tree Walkers come for her.
In ages past, the great rain of fire and ash destroyed the Earth, wiping out the ancients and everything they had made. Nature has reclaimed much since then, spreading out in a vast forest full of wonder and dread. Ever in fear of being taken away, she follows Dad’s rules without question while learning to survive off the land.
No longer a small child, she accompanies Dad on one of his treks, her first time more than a few steps away from the cabin. A day exploring with him is the happiest time of her life, but joy is short-lived.
A monster follows them home.
Safe in her Haven, she hides while Dad goes outside to confront the beast. She wakes alone the next morning, and waits. Alas, her hope of his return fades with the daylight. Desperate, she breaks his strictest rule and goes outside alone. Not far from the cabin, she discovers his rifle abandoned next to the monster’s strange footprints.
Afraid but determined, Wisp sets off on her own into the Endless Forest to find Dad ― before the Tree Walkers catch her.
On SALE for a limited time only!

Are you a book blogger or reviewer? Join the blog tour here!

Sheltered among the great moss-dappled trunks, Wisp peered out from her hiding place at the forest of monsters, barely breathing, lest the Tree Walkers hear her.
She glanced back over her shoulder at Dad, twenty feet away and closer to the cabin. Distracted by fiddling with his rifle, he hadn’t noticed her wander off toward the little yellow flowers. Being so far away from him tightened a knot in her belly, but she pushed fear aside. Hunger had far more of a hold on her, and besides… the sun filtered down through the pines, strong and warm. Tree Walkers didn’t come out in the day.
Or so she hoped.
Wisp eased her toes into the soil, on guard for sharp rocks, stinging insects, or other dangers. The leather scraps of her skirt brushed at her legs with each tentative step. Dad recently made it to replace the same tattered dress she’d worn for the past two years. The frayed garment had grown so tight the fabric was ready to come apart if she breathed in too deep. He’d also given her a shirt he’d found on one of his scavenging trips, but she’d been less thrilled it with due to its bright pink color. It made her stand out. Not to mention, it had been torn so short it left her stomach bare. This outfit wouldn’t do well in the colder months, though Dad seldom let her out of the cabin then anyway, so perhaps it wouldn’t matter. While he didn’t make the pink mess, he did fix it for her. The former T-shirt had belonged to a grownup, but he’d added a crisscross of leather cord at the neck to cinch it tighter.
Despite the horrid color of her shirt, at least she could move around and not worry about destroying her clothing.
She squatted low to the ground, her thighs peeking out from two slits in the front of her skirt. A flap of thicker leather hung down between her legs, almost touching the soil as she brushed her hand back and forth looking for signs of edible insects or plants. Straight blonde hair fell around her, also nearly in contact with the ground. Close to home, they’d harvested everything of value already. To find food, they would have to venture deeper into the woods and risk the Tree Walkers finding them.
The thought brought a shiver.
“Wisp?” called Dad, worry in his voice. “Where are you going?”
Suppressing a gasp of fear, she twisted around to peer back at him. Before she could say a word, a distant snap echoed behind her in the woods. She crouched even lower and whirled back to stare in that direction, fingers and toes digging into the dirt, ready to run like hell for the cabin door.
Dad jogged up behind her. “What are you doing so far off? You know you’re not supposed to wander away from me like that.”
She lifted one hand to point at the distant forest floor full of tiny yellow flowers. “I found yellowgreens.”

Author Bio:
Born in a little town known as South Amboy NJ in 1973, Matthew has been creating science fiction and fantasy worlds for most of his reasoning life. Somewhere between fifteen to eighteen of them spent developing the world in which Division Zero, Virtual Immortality, and The Awakened Series take place. He has several other projects in the works as well as a collaborative science fiction endeavor with author Tony Healey.
Hobbies and Interests:
Matthew is an avid gamer, a recovered WoW addict, Gamemaster for two custom systems (Chronicles of Eldrinaath [Fantasy] and Divergent Fates [Sci Fi], and a fan of anime, British humour 


Thursday, March 22, 2018

Tour + Review: Storm Raven by K. Hanson

36151373Storm Raven
Genre: YA Fantasy
Release Date: December 15th 2017

YA Fantasy with Pirates!

Captain Nereyda and her first mate, Brynja, lead a band of pirates as they seek out grand adventures and loot vulnerable merchant ships. However, when they attempt an overly ambitious raid, Nereyda and her crew are captured by Commander Erhan of the Imperial navy and separated. Nereyda is pressed into service aboard a ship to patrol the treacherous waters of the Shattered Sea. Meanwhile, Brynja and the rest of the crew are sent to a life of hellish labor deep in an Imperial mining prison camp.

While serving her sentence, Nereyda is shipwrecked on an unknown island. As she explores it, she stumbles into some ancient ruins and finds…something. Whatever it is, it wakes a part of Nereyda that she had not felt before. Something that could help her free the rest of her crew and return to life on the sea, if only she can learn to control it. Unfortunately, Commander Erhan is also on the island. Nereyda must escape him, get off of the island, and rescue her crew before the commander can stop her and before her crew withers away in the oppressive mines.

Read the first three chapters here:

Add to Goodreads

4 stars

Storm Raven is a YA pirate novel that is told from multiple perspectives that really bring the story together, and make it better than it could have been with just one perspective. The three perspectives are Captain Nereyda, First Mate Brynja, and Commander Erhan.

They were all very unique and intriguing characters. Nereyda is the Captain of the ship, Storm Raven; and Brynja is her first mate. They are both very strong female characters, who really make this novel stand out. The last perspective, Erhan is after Nereyda and Brynja. I loved that the novel wasn't just from the perspective of the pirates.

I would highly recommend this novel if you are a fan of fantasy, especially pirates, because this book was amazing.

About the Author
K.  HansonK lives in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, where he works as a software developer. In his spare time, when he isn’t writing, he enjoys reading, working out, playing video games, and spending time with his wonderful fiancee, Bobbi. Some of his favorite authors are Tom Clancy, George R. R. Martin, and Sarah Maas.

Blog Tour Organized by:

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Tour + Review: Magnetic by Carissa Miller

Genre: YA Mystery/Romance
Release Date: September 2017

When Elle Christiansen's rebellion leads to her father's expulsion from a parsonage in small-town Ohio, the forlorn pair is forced to move to Oklahoma to live with an aunt neither of them has ever met. Here she encounters her aunt’s neighbor—Maverick Mason, the quietly confident son of a wealthy oil tycoon who infuriates her as much as he inexplicably draws her in…

Maverick slowly gains Elle’s trust and coaxes her out from the seemingly impenetrable walls of self-protection she erected around her heart when her mother was murdered. He convinces Elle to confide the secrets of her tortured past: that she saw her mother's murder before it took place, and she was the one who found her, bleeding to death at the end of a lonely dirt road. Together the unlikely pair begins to unlock the secrets of not only Elle’s sordid past, but her mother's and grandmother’s as well, to uncover decades of greed, corporate corruption, lies, and murder. Quickly, the sobering realization hits: if they do not solve her mother’s murder, Elle will undoubtedly suffer the same fate. As she continues her journey toward truth alongside the boy she is magnetically drawn to in a way both frightening and uncontrollable, Elle finds the road she is most afraid of going down—that one lane dirt road where her mother was murdered—just might be the only place she can truly find redemption.  

Magnetic tells of the enduring pain of living with unsolved violent crime. Inspired by debut author Carissa Miller’s true-life events, it’s a haunting account of a young girl’s struggle in the aftermath of shattering loss. With an unraveling love story, puzzling mystery, unexpected twists and turns, and a gripping pace that will keep you turning pages, our heroine takes you on her journey as she learns one of life’s great lessons: facing your fears instead of running from them, is the only way to truly find freedom.

Add to Goodreads

4 stars

I loved Magnetic by Carissa Miller. The writing style was amazing, the pacing started off a little slow for me, but it was nice as the story progressed, and the characters were very well-written, and relatable. As I was reading, it felt like I was a part of the story.

I loved both Elle and Maverick, and I really thought their personalities clicked, and that there was real chemistry between the two of them. Elle and Maverick were both likable, although they did have their frustrating moments.

Overall, I really enjoyed reading this novel, and I would highly recommend it to mystery lovers who like a touch of romance.

A Note from the Author
Carissa Miller was inspired to write her debut novel—Magneticbecause of her firsthand experience living with the trauma of an unsolved violent crime, her mother’s attempted rape and murder that remains unsolved to this day. Carissa never intended to publish Magnetic until her children found it on her computer, started reading it, and fell in love with the story and the characters, Maverick and Elle. With her children challenging her and cheering her on, telling her that she couldn’t give up because the world needed to read Elle and Maverick’s story, Carissa finally edited and published Magnetic two years after they found it on her laptop.

About the Author
KB5A1406-4.jpegCarissa Miller writes a lifestyle and design blog called CC and Mike, where she and her husband blog about their experiences designing, building, and flipping houses in the Midwest. She was inspired to write her debut novel–Magnetic—because of her firsthand experience living with the trauma of an unsolved violent crime, her mother’s attempted murder. When she’s not writing, blogging, or designing, Carissa loves Oklahoma summers on the lake with her husband and three children, going to Oklahoma State sporting events and cheering on the Cowboys, and traveling cross country with her family in the RV she and her husband renovated. Carissa laughs loudly, loves with her whole heart, tells it how it is to a fault, and enjoys living life to the fullest, every moment of every day.

Blog Tour Organized by:

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Tour + Review and Giveaway: Sneaking Out by Chuck Vance

Sneaking Out
Chuck Vance
(Chased, #1)
Published by: Dunemere Books
Publication date: March 6th 2018
Genres: Mystery, Young Adult
Could you sleep next to a murderer? 
Luke Chase—yes, that Luke Chase, a modern hero ripped from the headlines—didn’t mean to get caught up in Mrs. Heckler’s murder. He just wanted to hook up with the hot new British girl at St. Benedict’s, and if that meant sneaking out to the woods after hours, then so be it. But little did he know someone would end up dead right next to their rendezvous spot, and his best friend and roommate Oscar Weymouth would go down for it. With suspects aplenty and a past that’s anything but innocent, Luke Chase reluctantly calls on his famous survival skills to find the true killer.
For fans of “A Study in Charlotte” and boarding school lit, “Sneaking Out” (book one in the “Chased” series) immerses readers in the privileged prep school world, with a mystery that exposes the dark side of life on a residential high school campus.

3 stars

I had some high expectations for Sneaking Out by Chuck Vance because it was told to be for fans of "A Study in Charlotte", which I loved, and it didn't really live up to those expectations. But I still really enjoyed it because it was a good mystery set in a boarding school setting.

I liked Luke Chase, and I really enjoyed how he grew throughout the novel. I didn't connect with him on a deeper level, but I still really enjoyed his character. I also really liked all of the side characters, and thought that they all added a nice touch to the story, and were distinct enough to tell apart from one another.

I would recommend this novel if you are a fan of YA mystery.

Author Bio:
Chuck Vance is a pseudonym for a bestselling writer of both adult mysteries and novels for young adults. Vance attended boarding school in Connecticut and graduated from Columbia University. Vance has lived in New York, Moscow, London, Paris and Los Angeles and is frequently on the move. 


Review: Lifeboat Clique by Kathy Parks

22926200Lifeboat Clique by Kathy Parks

Some people might say that Denver had a death wish. Why else would she have dared to sneak into a Malibu beach party where she’d be surrounded by enemies, namely including her ex-BFF Abigail?

Oh yeah. Croix. Denver never thought in a million years he’d ask her out, but who was she to question this miracle of fate? Well, that wasn’t the only surprise fate had in store.

During the party a tsunami hit the coast of California, wiping out everything in its path. Denver and a handful of others escaped death by holding onto the roof of the house and were swept out to sea. Of course, one of her fellow castaways was none other than Abigail, who could barely stand the sight of her.

Now that she’s floating in the ocean, stuck on a small boat with the most popular kids in school and waiting to be rescued, Denver wonders what might kill her first-dehydration, sunstroke, or the girl she used to think of as a sister?

A hilariously dark and twisted story that sparkles with a remarkably fresh voice, The Lifeboat Clique is Kathy Park’s irreverent yet insightful novel about how to survive in the most unthinkable circumstances.

Format: Audiobook
Narrator: Allyson Ryan
Published By: Katherine Tegen Books and HarperAudio
Genre: YA - Contemporary


Lifeboat Clique by Kathy Parks was an interesting novel about the experiences of some teenagers who float adrift into the sea after a tsunami strikes the coast of California, where they are partying. Denver, our main protagonist of the story, is one of the five, and you get to experience how her life came to this point through flashbacks throughout the novel. I just found the concept of the novel to be unique because it's not everyday that I pick up a novel about a teen's experiences during a tsunami.

I, for the most part enjoyed the novel. I liked Denver, and her attitude and personality; not to mention her growth through the novel, and how this experience changes her. Through this story, you get to experience how easily differences between people are overcome when chaos strikes. And even though I wasn't a huge fan of all of the teens at the beginning, my opinion did change as the story progressed.

Even though I did enjoy the novel, there were a few complaints I had about the book. The first one being the pacing of the story. It's definitely slower than what I prefer, and the flashback scenes do somewhat allow for faster pacing, the scenes where they are out at sea are very slow because there isn't much going on outside of conversation. The other big complaint I had was that I did not find this novel to be funny at all - and this may be due to the fact that I'm not the target audience, and maybe back when I was younger I would have found some of the events and conversation to be funny, but I didn't as I listened through the audiobook. Other than those two personal issues I had with the book, I found it to be good.

I also want to touch on one other thing that I didn't like but didn't really influence my rating of the book, unlike the two complaints above, but I wanted to point out was an super insta-love that happens in the story that was really rushed, and occurred over a few days.

I would recommend the novel if you are a fan of YA contemporary, and if you are looking for more of a fluff story. And be prepared for some emotional moments in the novel.

Blitz + Excerpt and Giveaway: Dominion by Julie Hall

I am so excited that DOMINION by Julie Hall is available now and that I get to share the news!

If you haven’t yet heard about this wonderful book, be sure to check out all the details below.

This blitz also includes a giveaway for a complete signed paperback set (4 books), a $10 Amazon GC, and Life After Swag, US Only, courtesy of Julie and Rockstar Book Tours. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

About The Book:

Title: DOMINION (Life After, #3)
Author: Julie Hall
Pub. Date: March 20, 2018
Publisher: Julie Hall
Formats: eBook
Pages: 365
Find it:  Goodreads, Amazon

After defeating the red dragon’s legion of bloodthirsty demons, Audrey can finally settle into the afterlife with the knowledge her family is safe. But her quest for a perfect existence shatters the moment Logan is kidnapped in an attempt to bend her to Satan’s will.

Audrey must now travel to the one place no hunter has ever ventured to save the man she loves . . . Hell.

Savage demons, desiccated corpses, life sucking zombie trees, and a land of death and rot await Audrey and her friends as they battle through the fiery realm.

But Logan’s freedom comes with a price . . . the destruction of Audrey’s happily ever after.
As Satan schemes for dominion over all the realms, Audrey learns that some acts may be beyond redemption.

Title: HUNTRESS (Life After, #1)
Author: Julie Hall
Pub. Date: May 16, 2017
Publisher: Julie Hall
Formats: Paperback, eBook
Pages: 351
Find it:  Goodreads, Amazon, B&N, TBD

No one’s afterlife is as dispiriting as Audrey’s―at least that’s what she believes after waking up dead without her memories and being promptly assigned to hunt demons for the rest of eternity. She’s convinced God’s made a cosmic mistake; after all, she’d rather discuss the color of her nails than break them on angelic weapons.

It doesn’t help that her trainer, Logan, is as infuriating as he is attractive. And just when Audrey and Logan appear close to developing an amicable relationship, a decision made under duress pushes their hearts in a direction neither of them saw coming.

Despite her sub-par fighting abilities, an ancient weapon of unparalleled power chooses Audrey as its wielder, attracting the cautious gazes of her fellow hunters and the attention of Satan himself. With Satan’s eyes now fixed on Audrey, a battle for the safety of the living looms in the shadows.

Title: WARFARE (Life After, #2)
Author: Julie Hall
Pub. Date: June 13, 2017
Publisher: Julie Hall
Formats: eBook
Pages: 273
Find it:  Goodreads, Amazon, B&N, TBD

The battle is far from over.

When the lives of her loved ones are put in peril, who will Audrey turn to for help? On the surface, Audrey's existence in the afterlife is coming together. Her quirky new mentor guides her on the path to becoming the demon hunter she always hoped. She has great friends and even a kinda-sorta-maybe new boyfriend. But if things are so wonderful, why is Logan never far from her thoughts?

After learning that her family is the target of an unprecedented demonic siege Audrey puts all she’s gained in jeopardy by defying heavenly authorities and returning to Earth. Stranded at the place she once called home with the one person she's been desperate to forget, she'll face vicious monsters, betrayers, and a legion of demons with an insidious weapon that even her celestial sword can't defeat.

Will Audrey’s mistakes in the afterlife be what destroys the lives of the ones she loves the most?

Title: LOGAN (Life After, #2.5)
Author: Julie Hall
Pub. Date: December 26, 2017
Publisher: Julie Hall
Formats: eBook
Pages: 143
Find it:  Goodreads, Amazon, B&N, TBD

Every warrior has his weakness.
Logan has it all—friends, popularity, girls—but his perfect life isn’t all he imagined.

When one mistake leads to his untimely arrival in the afterlife, he becomes a weapon against the evil that lurks on Earth.

When a mission goes awry he emerges with a secret superpower, but is broken in mind and body. He cleverly hides his scars, until the day he’s assigned to train an unlikely new demon hunter. Even though Audrey is as fiery as she is alluring, this beauty may be the one to tame his inner beast.

Now the only thing he’s sure of is that his existence will never be the same.

Fans of The Mortal Instruments, Supernatural, and This Present Darkness, won’t want to miss experiencing the beginnings of this epic love story.

LOGAN is a companion novella to the bestselling and multiple award-winning LIFE AFTER series. It can be read as a standalone, or as Book 2.5 in the series.

Exclusive Excerpt

We sat on his bed, tucked up against the headboard, Logan sitting with one knee bent and an outstretched leg, and me curled into a ball against his chest, practically cuddled on his lap.

When my tears were spent, I let out a shaky breath of air. 

“Audrey, I can’t—” Logan’s voice caught on something. His head rested on top of mine. When he continued, his voice dropped an octave, thickened with emotion. “I can’t imagine what you went through down there. I’m so very sorry. I should never have bonded with you.”

I savored the warm thud of his heartbeat on my cheek for several seconds before what he’d said sunk in. The leakage from my eyes along with a bad case of the feels must have dulled my reactions.
I jerked to a sitting position to stare at him in disbelief—and anger. My face was crusted with the salt of dried tears. There was no doubt I was a hot mess and a half. But that was nothing compared to the mess he’d just spewed.

He reached for me again, but I put a hand up to ward off his movements and curled my upper lip.

Where to even start?

“What I went through? Are you insane?” His gaze jumped around my face as if he couldn’t decide on a safe place to land. “Logan, I actually felt an echo of what you went through. I even experienced some of it in a dream or a weird out of body experience where I was you. What I went through was 

He opened his mouth to speak, but I slashed a hand through the air to stop him. “Nothing compared to what had been done to you. You were torn to shreds. Literally, in some spots.”

His face paled. I shouldn’t have gone there and instantly regretted bringing it up—but I couldn’t handle his concern for me when he had been tortured. We’d get to the “should never have bonded with you” comment next.

“You experienced some of . . . of what I went through?” he asked.

Shoot, I gave him another reason to beat himself up. Rookie mistake. “Never mind about that. And what’s this business about regretting bonding with me? Frankly, that’s kind of—hey!”

He grabbed my upper arms and held me still as I tried to push away even farther. His blue eyes flashed, and his face was hard as stone. “If bonding with you caused you to feel even a second of what I endured in that place, then yes, it’s something I deeply regret and would do anything to take back.”

Buried under the caveman response was something sweet, but I wasn’t feeling it.

“Argh. You . . .” I pointed a finger at his face. “You just . . .”

As I sputtered to find the right words, the corners of Logan’s lips just barely tipped up. I stopped talking when I spotted his involuntary reaction. Of course I’d find a guy who thought it was cute when I got mad. Actually, that was probably pretty lucky considering I did tend to have a short fuse.
I pressed my lips together and narrowed my eyelids before performing another visual sweep of his body.

Yep, he looked to be relatively healthy.

I launched myself at him and grabbed the sides of his face, and then I planted my lips right over his. 
Just like the first time I’d surprised him with a kiss, he was momentarily stunned.

I gently but firmly bit down on his full bottom lip in a silent demand for him to get with the program. Then I pulled back a fraction, just far enough that my lips grazed his when I spoke.

“Less talking, more kissing,” I ordered.

I’d gone to Hell and back for this guy. I wanted to collect my reward . . . with interest.

About Julie:

Julie Hall is an award-winning, USA Today bestselling author of young adult fantasy fiction. 

Before writing her first novel Julie worked as a film publicist and rubbed elbows with the rich and famous . . . as in she would gently nudge them to let them know their meal had arrived during press interviews.

She now spends most of her "office hours" with her two furry writing buddies, Bear and Coco. Her daughter thinks that mommy's superpower is “sleeping all day,” but that’s because she’s often awake until the wee hours of the morning weaving tales of adventure in worlds of her own creation. When asked in an interview what she wanted to be when she grew up, she’s quoted to have answered, “to never have to grow up.”

She currently lives in Portland, Oregon with her four favorite people--her husband, daughter, and two fur babies (because dogs are people too).  

Connect with Julie here, or on social media.

Giveaway Details:
1 winner will receive a complete signed paperback set (4 books), a $10 Amazon GC, and Life After Swag, US Only.

Monday, March 19, 2018

Blitz + Excerpt, Teaser, and Giveaway: Galatine's Curse by T.J. Green

Galatine’s Curse
T.J. Green
(Tom’s Arthurian Legacy, #3)
Publication date: March 20th 2018
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
An ancient sword. A dark secret. A new enemy.
In the third book in the series, Tom has established a new life in the Otherworld, a life he loves. He lives with Arthur in New Camelot, and Arthur is hosting a tournament. Eager to test his sword-fighting skills, Tom’s competing. But while the games are being played, his friends are attacked and everything he loves is threatened. Tom has to find the intruder before anyone else gets hurt.
Tom’s sword, Galatine, seems to be the focus of these attacks. Their investigations uncover Galatine’s dark history and a terrible betrayal that a family has kept secret for generations. But this secret now puts others at risk, including Tom, and he realises that he could lose everything unless he can solve the mystery of his sword’s past.
Galatine’s Curse is the third book in the YA Arthurian fantasy series, Tom’s Arthurian Legacy. If you enjoy magic and mystery, a strong group of characters and Arthurian fantasy, then you’ll love this action-filled adventure.
Buy Galatine’s Curse for your thrilling new fantasy adventure today!

They shuffled towards the light, and Tom gasped. The passage had opened out, and they were on a narrow shelf, looking out across a large cave that twinkled with a faint blue glow. Far below them was a lake lit from beneath, reminding Tom of Ceridwen’s Cauldron.
“Where’s the light coming from?” Tom asked, as he craned round to look at the cave. It was almost circular, and although the lake was a long way down, the roof seemed far above them too.
“Great Goddess!” Nimue murmured. “It must be coming from daystar sapphires.” She pointed. “There are hundreds set into the cavern walls.”
“What are those? I’ve never heard of them,” Brenna said.
“Very rare stones with strong magical properties,” Nimue replied. “Only those who practise magic use them, and they’re very hard to get.” She gazed around with wonder.
“And yet Raghnall seems to have had his own enormous supply,” Arthur said.
“I wonder,” Merlin said, “could they have been used in Filtiarn’s spell?”
A narrow walkway ran off to their right before petering out, and Merlin felt his way along, heading towards where a smattering of stones came within reach.
“Maybe,” Nimue murmured, deep in thought. “They have the ability to enhance any spell, but the power actually makes them dangerous. I have never used them, even when I had some. If they’re used incorrectly, they can cause what I can only describe as a magical explosion.”
“That’s a long way down,” Bloodmoon said, peering over the edge. He picked up a stone and dropped it. It was several seconds before they heard a faint splash. “I think there’s something down there.”
“Like what?” Tom said, alarmed.
Beansprout dropped to her knees, better to look over the edge. “Can you see that black shape against the blue? It looks like it’s circling around.”
“It’s getting bigger,” Woodsmoke said. “Is that because it’s getting closer?” He looked at Bloodmoon, annoyed. “Have you woken something?”
“I only dropped a stone in!” he said, indignant. “Whatever it is, it’s a long way down. You worry too much, Woodsmoke!”
Before anyone else could comment there was an enormous splash and the black shape emerged from the water, silhouetted against the blue. The shape kept coming, and then a spurt of fire emerged from the blackness, followed by the familiar roar of a dragon.
“It’s a bloody great dragon,” Arthur yelled, pulling Excalibur free with a hiss. “Run!”
But Merlin was still at the end of the ledge, examining the stones.
“Merlin, get a bloody move on!” Arthur yelled, preparing to fight as they stood mesmerised by the dragon’s approach.
And suddenly Tom was aware of Galatine, trembling, its hilt warm to the touch. “How can it live in water?” he shouted as he pulled Galatine free, its opals now swirling furiously.
“Water dragon,” Nimue yelled above the roar, “very vicious, and territorial.”
A blinding white light emitted from her hands, held palms forward, forming a wall in front of them just as the dragon drew level and released another stream of fire.
They instinctively ducked, but the shield held, turning into a wall of flame as the fire hit it. Beyond, the dragon flapped its enormous wings and fixed them with a vicious stare before flying round to circle back, its huge wing span creating a rush of air.
“Wow!” Tom said, rising to his feet and looking with new appreciation at Nimue.
Merlin stumbled, and Arthur ran to him, helping him to his feet. Woodsmoke and Bloodmoon had already drawn their arrows in case the shield failed.
“Get a move on, Merlin,” Nimue commanded icily. She turned to Beansprout. “Join your hand to mine, and hold your other hand out, like me.”
Without hesitating, Beansprout did as she asked, and Tom saw her stiffen as a wave of power travelled through her, strengthening the shield.
Tom watched the dragon turn back towards them, dripping with phosphorescent water, like a sheen of blue fire racing along its wings and dripping down its jaw. It was magnificent and terrifying all at the same time.

Author Bio:
T J Green was born in England, but moved to New Zealand 10 years ago. She currently lives near Wellington with her partner and her cats Sacha and Leia. When not writing she does lots of reading, gardening and yoga.
In a previous life she's been a singer in a band, and has done some acting with a theatre company - both of which were lots of fun. On occasions she and a few friends make short films, which begs the question, where are the book trailers? Thinking on it ...
Tom's Inheritance is TJ Green's first book in the series Tom’s Arthurian Legacy, the sequel Twice Born was released in February 2017. Galatine’s Curse, book 3, will be released in March 2018. She is also working on a few short stories which further expand the world of Tom in the Other.
Her new project is an urban fantasy series about witches.