Christine Nolfi does it again

Seeker w KW logoSince the Lei Crime Kindle World launch in April, Christine Nolfi’s, The Shell Keeper has spent much of that time in the number one spot of the Kindle World Contemporary category. The only book that has moved The Shell Keeper from that top spot, (which is on sale right now for less than a dollar!) is her second Lei Crime Kindle World novella, The Shell Seeker.

There’s a good reason Christine’s work has been hugging the top of the charts. Great settings, rich and lovely characters and an intriguingly magical story that takes Toby Neal’s vibrant character, Lei Texeira, to places Lei has never been. Here’s a description of The Shell Seeker.

In South Carolina, there’s more than magic in the air. Now policewoman Lei Texeira must solve the case of the Pirate Necklace.

 The famed emeralds, spirited in the 1700s from the pirate Blackbeard’s ship, have been snatched once again. This time, the bling was taken from Marie-Therese Belvedere, a woman whose cruelty is only topped by her arrogance.

 Lei doesn’t care for the icy socialite, but she feels an instant connection with the woman’s stepdaughter. An unlucky star has followed Sydney Belvedere her entire life. If the necklace isn’t found, she’ll lose a treasure more dear than the finest gem.

 Only the magic of Lei’s intuition stands between Sydney and unspeakable loss.

Sounds great doesn’t it? I had to quiz Christine about her experience and get some insight into what drove her to keep writing in Toby Neal’s Lei Crime Kindle World. Continue reading

Coming soon! – Seal of a Monk

SealofaMonkI’m excited for some of my author friends who are collectively putting out six more novellas in the Lei Crime Kindle World. Sadly, I won’t be contributing this time since I’m hard at work on a novel I hope to have done this fall. That said, I can still make sure folks hear about these fantastic and diverse stories.

Eden Baylee’s Seal of a Monk, is the first of the batch I’ll talk about here. She has another fantastic cover for the story she describes this way:

Seal of a Monk, By Eden Baylee

The ancient jungles of Kauai provide the perfect setting for self-discovery.

Despite the terror she experienced on her last trip, Lainey Lee returns to Hawaii to manage a silent meditation course on the Coconut Coast. Twenty-five women are under her care for ten days in a beautiful and remote location. Lainey expects to find inner peace, but four days into the course, one of the meditators disappears without a trace.

Did the girl leave of her own free will, or was she lured away by a strange cult? Lainey is frantic to answer these questions. As her desperation grows, she finds help from an unexpected source—a retired Navy SEAL named Maxamillian Scott.

Now, Lainey has two mysteries to solve: what happened to the missing girl and the case of her own heart. Can she ever trust a man again?

Sounds really good doesn’t it? I can’t wait to read it. In the meantime, Eden took the time to fill me in on how this project went for her.

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Amazon’s review dilemma

deleteAmazon has decided to start deleting reviews they consider fake. What possible criteria could they use to do this?

Like many independently published authors, when I finish a writing a book, I send it to a group of beta readers to get their feedback. Once the book is published, after several rewrites and line edits and the like, I’ll send it to several more people to request honest feedback and an honest review. I’ve never paid anyone a single penny for a review. At most, like giving a gift to a friend, I’ve given titles away.

I have gifted books to people and received no reviews in exchange. I can only assume those folks either didn’t think the book was worth a review or simply didn’t like it. Rather than give me a bad review, they didn’t review it at all. Continue reading

Speaking of NAACP

Me Red carpet smallAll this talk of the NAACP (I know…stretch, but I’m trying to lean toward the positive here), reminded me of a few years ago when the book I wrote along with Shoshana Johnson, was
nominated for an NAACP Image Award. I’m Still Standing, didn’t win, but it was so memorable to go to L.A., be on a red carpet, meet so many famous people and watch people like Prince and Halle Barry present awards. I’ll never forget it and will always appreciate being able to share it with Shoshana.

When I came back, I did this interview with Army Today. Turned out it was the first on-camera interview for the young Soldier. He did a pretty good job I think! He even remembered the most important question … is there anything else you’d like to add?!

Traveling virtually

Hammock timeIf you pay any attention to this blog, you know that I’ve JUST returned from a week on the beach. Sigh. Hammock Time :) I already miss it.

Now it’s back to business but that doesn’t mean I’m sitting still. This week, I’m taking you along with me on my week-long blog tour as part of a month-long blitz of the Lei Crime Kindle World authors. I’m sharing my week with the lovely and talented historian slash novelist, J. L. Oakley and her great Lei Crime novella, Saddle Road.

Sure, there’s no sand between the toes, but there is a chance for a $30 Amazon gift card to some lucky commenter.

So come along with me, post comments, check out the bloggers who are hosting us and share the information with your friends. And then, if you’re so inclined and you haven’t already, picked up a copy of Hidden Poppies or one of my other titles. There’s lots to choose from.

I’ll be working on another Lei Crime novella, just as soon as I finish the first draft of this new series I’m excited about. More on that to follow.

If you missed us today, be sure to stop by and visit on one of the other days.  blog tour with JL

June 8: Undercover Book Reviews

June 9: Room With Books

June 10: Independent Authors

June 11: Straight from the Library

June 11: Laurie’s Thoughts and Reviews

June 12: Long and Short Reviews

Books to take to the beach!

Beach kindleIt’s been a very long time since I’ve granted myself the luxury of a beach vacation. So long in fact, I need new bathing suits (not my favorite thing to shop for), new beach bags, new flip flops and sunscreen. Lots of sunscreen.

By far the most important thing I need to stock up on – even more important than the bathing suit – is beach reading material. For me, the sun, sand and surf are nice but without a good book I might as well be at work.

To ensure this precious reading time is not squandered, I reached out to friends to get recommendations. And since I have so many author friends, I included the caveat they couldn’t recommend their own books. While many suggested books I’d already read, there were a few gems in there I had to share. I know I’m not the only one looking for good summertime reading so here is a rundown of the suggestions I received.

My brother, Larry and I exchange book ideas all the time. He usually never steers me wrong. I just finished reading all six books in the Purge of Babylon series by Sam Sisavath based on Larry’s strong support. I absolutely loved them. Can’t wait for book seven. But I finished the series and need more to fill my time.

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Crow Hollow is worth every penny

crow hollowThey say good books open up new worlds, and that’s exactly what Michael Wallace does, in Crow Hollow. He takes us to the new world of the American colonies, where wilderness is the backyard, where Puritan conventions and punishments are almost as cruel as the conditions and where once friendly Native American neighbors are almost extinct after a bloody war.

Every time I read a Wallace book, it takes me a couple days to return to normal after traveling to the worlds he creates which are always transformative and tangible in their realism. This time, one hundred years before the colonies will declare their independence, we are in Boston, a small community where church attendance is mandatory, where men guard the walls around the clock and where everyone has fresh memories of war with neighboring Indians.

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A lasting impression

Lei Crime KW Series coversI wonder if Toby Neal knew what she was starting when she invited us to jump into her sandbox. The assignment to write a novella to help launch the Lei Crime Series Kindle World seemed straight forward. The deadline was crazy short, but I got my butt in the chair and wrote Hidden Poppies in record time and am proud of the way it turned out. I love the book, I love the cover and I love the idea of writing another novella for the Kindle World very soon.

What I didn’t expect was the remarkable collaboration and support I received from the other authors working on this project. The emails between us have been flying back and forth and our Facebook and Twitter exchanges have been lively and, for me, informative—I’ve learned so much from these authors!

The diversity of the eight stories is proof that, if you stick eight authors in a room and ask them to describe something, you’ll get eight completely different viewpoints and that’s a good thing. I thoroughly enjoyed every one of these stories. I’m sure you will too.

Here are my thoughts on the books in the series:

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Daredevil – Have you seen it?

DaredevilCall me an adolescent teen who spends most of her time in a basement (my office), but I love a good comic book, (alright! Graphic novel) when I read one. I love them even more when I can watch them on TV.

From The Walking Dead – the one I think of as the king of all graphic stories – to TV shows like Gotham, Arrow, Flash and more, the super hero theme isn’t going away anytime soon, nor would I want it to.

Even with all of these great shows, I always approach new attempts with a bit of skepticism. We’ve seen horrid failures as writers and directors take a crack at creating moving-picture-style heroes worthy of the original conception. And it was because of the first Daredevil movie that I figured the Netflix version of it wouldn’t be very interesting.

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The Ceremony

Coming April 7

Available now for less than a dollar

While the Lei Crime Kindle World novella, Hidden Poppies is doing well and getting some early praise, I don’t want you to forget about the Harper Mystery companion short, The Ceremony.

The Ceremony tells the story of what happens when Master Sergeant Lauren Harper is finally recognized for her bravery. The best part is, the story is told from Harry’s perspective. I think you’ll enjoy it!