Review for Hurricane By Jenna-Lynn Duncan

I anxiously looked around, my heart palpitating, just in time to see an alligator slink into the green algae covered water that was on either side of us. I swallowed hard, and my heart raced even faster. Alligators were a different type of predator—the one thing I was afraid of. Now I was on my own personal swamp tour. What if my kidnappers left me in the middle of a swamp with five of
them creeping up on me? I’ve had that nightmare before and—oh no, if my dreams really are a sign of the future—I couldn’t breathe now.

Excerpt:
Adriana couldn’t decide what was worse—that Hurricane Katrina was heading for
New Orleans, or that she might not survive her kidnapping to see its potential
effects. She had trusted Hayden, even fallen for him, and now he and his
brother Luke were taking her deeper and deeper into the Bayou. Why had two of
her classmates, the mysterious Boudreaux brothers, kidnapped her? Why had
Adriana’s dreams started predicting the future? Most importantly, would she
make it out of the Bayou alive…

My Thoughts:

Adriana’s mom has never been part of her life, and her father is slowly backing away.  Life with nothing, but a catastrophic hurricane looming down on the city she loves, allows her to yield to the opportunity to find out about another world that exists; a world she is a part of.  Being a lover of all things, Louisiana, made this one a no-brainer for me.  Jenna Lynn’s descriptions of the city of New Orleans made me long to walk the French Quarter and nostalgic for pre-Katrina days.  Jenna Lynn is a wonderful storyteller and you will be sucked into the new world she has created and left wanting more.

Don’t miss this one!!!

Monique O’Connor James

Author of The Keepers, The Mulligan Man Available @ www.astraeapress.com

Coming Soon:  Jamais Vu

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I feel like an expert on some of these!  The truth is, every writer has stumbling blocks that require hours of editing and practice to get past.  I’ve listened to editors and publishers complain about many of these and here is a … Continue reading

Meet Stephanie Taylor Publisher and Owner of Astraea Press!

As you may or may not know my first book “The Keepers” was published by a press which was the brain child of Stephanie Taylor.  Astraea also published my short story “The Mulligan Man”, and will be publishing my second … Continue reading

Characters to Love

While I’m on vacation I thought I’d leave you with a couple of blogs so you don’t completely forget me!

Every couple of days in the writer/reader community on social media the following question is posed:  Who is your favorite character and why?

We all aspire to have a character or two that gets mentioned in every one of these threads.  How does one create characters who stick with readers, you ask?  If you google the question, you will get the same answer phrased a million different ways. But, I believe there are several things which come together to make  life-like and lovable, heroes/heroines and villains we can love to hate. Most of them are not covered on these lists.

If you’re like me you love to people watch.  Every person in the world has some habit or idiosyncrasy which makes them unique.  Remember in the movie Mr. and Mrs. Smith, when Jane realized the other spy was John?  She saw him wiggle his leg in a video and recognized him immediately.  These things make people interesting to look at and endear them to our hearts, whether we know it or not.  Does your hero chew on his thumb?  Does your villain bite his lip right before he tells a lie?

You can tell tons about a person by the way others react to him/her.  Does your heroine adore your hero?  Or does the sight of him make her skin crawl?  Your readers will react to all of characters’ feelings about each other, so craft these thoughts carefully.

What goes on  in your MC’s head?  I find the thoughts and questions which formulate inside a characters mind really tie me to them.  Make sure you sprinkle some of this inner dialogue in your story so your readers know precisely how he/she thinks.

When you are writing dialogue make sure you take into consideration the players background, accent, and geographical location.  Read it aloud and ask yourself if that person would really say those things.

Finally, have the character achieve some emotional or intellectual growth throughout the story.  The person doesn’t even have to be aware they have changed. However, within the paragraphs of your tale you can illustrate the differences in their reactions and ideals from the beginning of the story to the end.

Hope these suggestions help!

Cheers!

Monique O’Connor James

Twitter:               mjames13
WordPress:         www.moniquejames.wordpress.com
Website:             www.moniqueoconnorjames.com
 
Check out my novel The Keepers at Amazon, B & N, Astraea Press, or my website www.moniqueoconnorjames.com

Add my cover for The Keepers as your Profile Pic and Win!!!!

I was goofing on FB and tried to hypnotize everyone into adding my cover as their profile picture. What do you know?  It worked!! I’m leaving to go on vacation 6/16, so I’ll make this a quick contest with a great prize!  Here’s the deal.

1. Make sure I’m your friend on FB (not part of the contest, but it makes it easier).

2. Make the cover for The Keepers your profile picture until Friday July 15, 2011. 

3.  Send me a message or comment me that you did this. 

4.  I will do a random drawing Friday afternoon 6/15/11 for the winner.

Winner receives:  Drum Roll Please…………………………………………………………………

(If you are confused about how to do this go to my profile pics and click on the cover (or cropped cover) and click make this my profile picture.  If you already have one, win it as a gift for someone else 😀

A signed copy of The Keepers IN PRINT

Have Fun and Good Luck

Cheers!!!

Monique O’Connor James

Twitter:               mjames13
WordPress:         www.moniquejames.wordpress.com
Website:             www.moniqueoconnorjames.com

Winner of Signed copy of The Keepers!!! And a snipet of a review!!!

So we didn’t make it to #1 of course we still have…all of time to get there!  However, the love you guys have been spreading for my book and me has been priceless!  STACEY CLIFFORD won the signed copy!!!!!  Ya’ll keep an eye out I’m sure to give away more!!

Stacey email me your address so I can get your copy to you as soon I get them!!! Hopefully Late July!

I also wanted to share some comments I got from Katrina Whittaker who gave The Keepers a 4.5 star rating on good reads.

“Loved The Keepers !!!! Will post a review soon ;;) Such a fantastic unique story… a different concept for the angels… But i loved it !!! Paranormal angels and romance blended to quicken the heart beat with every page.. Elements of God – but I found this refreshing and somewhat inspiring.. Background info was great and all characters well placed and put forward. Smooth flowing dialogue and enough suspense, and romance to keep your interest piqued throughout ! A definite must read or to add to your tbr pile.. ”

You can’t beat that kind of endorsement eh?

Guys I’m doing Fan-tastic Fans once a week on my blog and would love to interview some of the fans of The Keepers just to throw the spotlight back on you. You can be a reader, blogger, reviewer, whatever, just email me at nique313@yahoo.com and let me know you are interested!!!!

Lots of Gratitude!

Love Ya!

Monique O’Connor James

Twitter:               mjames13
WordPress:         www.moniquejames.wordpress.com
Website:             www.moniqueoconnorjames.com

Chapter 4 Meet Justin – The Keepers get a peek then go buy it for $1.99!!!!

The sale on The Keepers has been extended through this week!  It’s $1.99 and the price will go back to $6.99 after the sale!!

Read this excerpt and then go get a copy for your e-book reader or phone!  🙂

Earlier, Justin had sat alone in his bedroom watching rain trickle from the roof line onto the patio outside, where it collected in an empty Coke bottle. He’d planned to be knee-deep in a pity party by the time his brother Rory returned from work.

It was difficult not to feel sorry for himself. He was utterly surrounded by the stench of humanity. He had asked for this very thing. He’d wanted to commune with them, be part of their world, but he’d soon discovered they repulsed him. He watched the human race and wondered how they managed to take their faultless existence and make it complete crap.

So he passed his time on days off watching the horrid humans, and even he found it pathetic. If he wasn’t dealing cards at Harrah’s, he sat on the couch in the French Quarter townhouse he shared with his three brothers and loathed his circumstances.

Dealing cards at the casino kept his mind from lamenting on things over which he had no control. Cards distracted him from the examination of mankind. They held no surprises and fell in predictable patterns. The stability comforted him. The notion that something so simple calmed him was ridiculous, but the serenity he found behind the table was the reason he returned to the casino night after night.

Justin’s principles had been complicated by the years he had wasted on Earth. The average mortal got out in eighty years, maybe ninety if they lead a mundane existence, but he had been stuck here for over three hundred, and for him the second-hand no longer swept across the clock. The totality of his life was mind numbing, so he tried to block it out with work.

A life lived well beyond the average lifespan, had become redundant, especially given the intense hatred he’d developed for the creatures sharing the planet with him. Rory insisted Justin was a bigot, too preoccupied with himself to understand the human dilemma, but Justin denied it. If he was somehow prejudiced against humans, it was through no fault of his own. They were after all, repulsive most of the time.

He was comforted by the rain as it streamed down the window. It had been a full decade since Justin had experienced adventure. He couldn’t remember the last time something piqued his interest. The music these days was mediocre at best, and it was rare that some poor soul was able to pour their thoughts into a book which could hold his interest.

He would have remained in his room pondering his restlessness, but his brother hauled him to their usual hang out. They were all there together, Blake, Lathan, and of course, Rory. Dez’s was a safety net of sorts, a place where they could drink and talk. Thankfully, the other patrons ignored them for the most part. In fact, Justin couldn’t remember the last time a newcomer graced the place, which is exactly why the girl across the bar
intrigued him. He didn’t know her, but that was only one reason he had spent
the evening absorbed in watching the slim brunette with the haunting sorrow in
her eyes.

He hadn’t heard her name – not yet. She’d wandered in from the rain shaking an umbrella and trying to look aloof. It had taken Vi less than ten minutes to engage her in conversation, and once Vi hooked the girl, they sat together for the rest of the evening. Vi had been his friend for years, and she could unfailingly be counted on in these matters. They often found the same people intriguing, and he knew she would befriend the newcomer.

New Orleans was a sea of appealing women with pleasing accents flowing from pretty lips, but there was something about this girl’s beauty, something that kept Justin’s eyes planted on her. She caught him gawking at her, and he didn’t bother to look away. Humiliation was just another useless human emotion he wouldn’t even pretend to possess.

Rory wanted to introduce himself, but Justin vetoed the plan with a look of warning. Luckily, his brother seemed more interested in Vi and sat down again with an easy grin. Justin was entirely relaxed until Dawson placed himself at their table begging for a fight. Dawson could always be relied on to kill a good mood. His Mohawk was tapered into precise points atop his head, and that alone made Justin want to punch him.

“What’s the matter Justin? Rory baggin’ all the babes or did someone shoot your dog?” The smell of tobacco and wet hair gel clung to Dawson like a disease. Only the fact that he had lost the ability to stave off the odor of humanity, made him less annoying.

Justin didn’t respond. Maybe if he ignored the moron he would take the hint and buzz off. Besides, he couldn’t take his eyes off the beauty with Vi, and Dawson’s gaze followed his.

“Ah,I see. You know she’s off limits.” Dawson leaned in closer, and used his foot to jolt Justin’s boot from the chair next to him. “Don’t touch me again, Dawson. And drop it. She’s human, in case you haven’t notice.”

“A human I bet I’ll take home tonight.” Dawson’s sardonic grin dripped with conceit and punctuated the dramatic wink he granted Justin. Justin slid his palms together as the skin over his knuckles hardened into stone. He allowed Dawson to gloat long enough to take a sip from his drink, and then laid him out with one colossal blow. He didn’t bend over to say all the things he was thinking; he figured the black eye would say it all.
The girl was watching, and Justin nearly felt ashamed, but she was just another
human, and he wasn’t going to concern himself with what bothered her. Not now
anyway.

 

Don’t forget a portion of the proceeds for this book will go to Susan G Komen Race for the Cure. 🙂

Monique O’Connor James
Author of:  “The Keepers”
 Twitter:               mjames13

Thank you Contest for The Keepers!!!!!

Heading for #1??!!!!

The last time I checked The Keepers was #3 on the list for Teens/Spiritual and #1 on the Hot New Releases!  My dad keeps me updated when I’m busy and forget to check so I’m pretty aware of where things stand! 

I can’t even begin to say how grateful I am to all those people who have supported me, posted for me, bought my books, and sent encouraging words.  My friends, family, fans, reviewers, bloggers, etc, etc, etc, have all been so gracious and I’ve made tons of new friends.

If The Keepers makes it to #1 on Amazon I’m giving away a signed copy.  I should get the print copies at the end of July and I will mail it to the Winner at that time!  All you have to do to participate is comment below!  I’ll draw from everyone who comments! 

Please repost on Facebook and Twitter and tell your friends so we can hit that #1 spot!

http://www.amazon.com/The-Keepers-ebook/dp/B0054LO9E8/ref=pd_rhf_p_t_1  Here is the Amazon link.

Also don’t forget to add my facebook pages to keep updated on coming releases!

http://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=511255176  and

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Monique-OConnor-James-Author/151581321573144 – Author page.

Thank you guys!  Love your Guts!

Cheers!

Monique O’Connor James

Twitter:               mjames13
WordPress:         www.moniquejames.wordpress.com
Website:             www.moniqueoconnorjames.com

PARTY ‘TIL YOUR HEELS FLY OFF: MEGA AUTHOR BLOG HOP TOUR – Mardi Gras Ball

The main school of thought concerning Mardi Gras, is it started thousands of years ago, as a celebration of fertility.  Eventually, the Catholic church became involved, in an effort, to stop parishioners from partaking in pagan festivals.  The Church changed the … Continue reading

PRIZES FOR THE KEEPERS DEBUT….6/6 & 6/7

I’m so excited about the debut of my novel “The Keepers” that I’m running several contests!!!!  Check it out!

1.  Like my facebook page www.facebook.com/monique-oconnor-james-author/151581321573144

Everyone who likes my page will be put into a random drawing for a PDF of THE KEEPERS!!!

Referrals:  Tell your friends about my book.  If your friend buys my book or ebook tell them to comment my Facebook and let me know they purchased and you referred them! The person with the most wins a T-shirt!

Comment my Twitter – mjames13, Facebook (either one) or any of my blogs.  All comments will be put into a random drawing for a t-shirt.

Everyone who orders including those who ordered today will be put in a drawing for a T-shirt.  If you order from Astraea’s website, please comment and let me know.

Thanks for all the support and LOVE!

Monique