Tuesday, August 22, 2023

Facing The Enemy ~ Lone Star Book Blog Tours Notable Quotables & Giveaway!

DiAnn Mills

Christian Fiction / Suspense / Romance
Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers
Date of Publication: September 5, 2023
Number of Pages: 352 pages 

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When the long-awaited reunion between Risa and her brother, Trenton, ends in tragedy, Risa is riddled with guilt, unable to cope with the responsibility she feels over his death. On leave from the FBI, Risa returns to her former career as an English teacher at a local college, only to see her past and present collide when one of her students, Carson Mercury, turns in an assignment that reads like an eyewitness account of her brother's murder, with details never revealed publicly.

Alarmed by Carson's inside knowledge of Trenton's death, Risa reaches out to her former partner at the FBI. Special Agent Gage Patterson has been working a string of baby kidnappings, but he agrees to help look into Carson's background. Risa and Gage soon discover their cases might be connected as a string of high-value thefts have occurred at properties where security systems were installed by Carson's stepfather and children have gone missing. There's a far more sinister plot at play than they ever imagined, and innocent lives are in danger.

A few Notable Quotables from
Facing the Enemy
by DiAnn Mills


DiAnn Mills is a bestselling author who believes her readers should expect an adventure. She is a storyteller and creates action-packed, suspense-filled novels to thrill readers. Her titles have appeared on the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists; won two Christy Awards; and been finalists for the RITA, Daphne Du Maurier, Inspirational Readers’ Choice, and Carol award contests. DiAnn is a founding board member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, Mystery Writers of America, and International Thriller Writers. DiAnn continues her passion for helping other writers be successful. She speaks to various groups and teaches writing workshops around the country.


Each winner gets choice of B&N or Amazon $25 gift card.
(US only; ends midnight, CDT, 9/1/23)

Friday, August 18, 2023

The Killer Enigma ~ Lone Star Book Blog Tours Book Blitz & Giveaway

Magnolia Bluff Crime Chronicles
Book 16

Cozy Mystery / Suspense / Cozy Mystery Series
Publisher: ICABOD Press
Coming August 19, 2023

Enough is Enough – JJ rumbled when the paparazzi invaded dinner.

JJ and Jo realize privacy doesn’t exist for them. They return to Magnolia Bluff to check on their friends and recapture the small-town anonymity. In Magnolia Bluff, no one suspects their fame.

They discount the status of urban legends in favor of acceptance and a quiet, peaceful life. After all, a supermodel needs time and space to recharge between jobs. A geek wants time to adore his wife.

Does Magnolia Bluff hold the answers to their prayers?
Will their desires get clouded by a hidden secret?

Past, present, and future collide in a perfect storm no one expected. JJ and Jo take action to uncover the truth. Chief Tommy Jager likes them but feels they’re a lightning rod for trouble and disruption.

Who will live or die to prevent the truth from being exposed? The answers may be in the graveyard with fresh flowers on the gravestone.

Their friends are targets – Their dreams are broken – They must fight

Charles Breakfield is a 25+ year technology expert in security, networking, voice, and anything digital. He enjoys writing, studying World War II history, travel, and cultural exchanges. He also enjoys wine tastings, wine-making, Harley riding, cooking extravaganzas, and woodworking.

Rox Burkey is a 25+ year applied technology professional who excels at optimizing technology and business investments for customers worldwide with a focus on optimized customer experiences. She writes white papers and documents with a marked preference for fiction.

Together they create award-winning stories that resonate with males and females, young and experienced adults, and bring a fresh new view to technology possibilities today.

Series Social Media:
Rox Burkey Social Media: 

FIRST: Autographed copy
SECOND: eBook copy
(US only; ends midnight, CST, 8/24/23)

Monday, August 14, 2023

Mumentous ~ Lone Star Book Blog Tours First Lines Spotlight, Book Trailer, & Giveaway!

Original Photos and Mostly-True Stories about Football,
Glue Guns, Moms, and a Supersized High School Tradition
That Was Born Deep in the Heart of Texas
Amy J. Schultz

Nonfiction / Photo-Driven Memoir / Women’s History / Pop Culture / Texana
Publisher: Atmosphere Press
Page Count: 178 pages
Publication Date: April 25, 2023

Scroll down for a giveaway!

The closest you'll ever get to seeing someone actually wear their heart on their sleeve is in Texas, every fall, at the local high school homecoming game.

They're called homecoming mums. They are as bodacious as football, as irresistible as a juicy rumor, and as deep as a momma's love. Over a hundred years ago when the custom began, mum was short for chrysanthemum, a typical corsage that boys gave to girls before taking them to the big football game. But through the decades, mum went from a simple abbreviation to a complicated shorthand for an eye-popping tradition that's as ingrained in the culture as it is confounding to outsiders.

Through her original photography and collection of stories from across and beyond the Lone Star State, Amy J. Schultz takes us deep in the heart of mum country. You'll meet kids who wear them, parents who buy them, and critics who decry them as just another example of consumerism gone wild. But mostly, you'll discover that just like every ritual which stands the test of time, someone is keeping the tradition alive. Someone like Mom.

Click to Purchase!

Amy J. Schultz is an author and award-winning photographer who explores unique aspects of modern culture that hide in plain sight. When she isn’t talking about homecoming mums, Amy is writing, taking photos, working on other creative projects, traveling, snort-laughing, or vacuuming up dog fur.

First Prize: signed hardback copy + enamel pin; 
Second Prize: eBook + enamel pin
(US only; ends midnight, CST, 9/8/23)

Tuesday, August 8, 2023

Things Get Ugly ~ Lone Star Book Blog Tour Excerpt & Giveaway!

The Best Crime Stories of
Joe R. Lansdale

Crime Fiction / Mystery / Short Stories
Publisher: Tachyon Publications
Date of Publication: August 15, 2023
Number of Pages: 352 pages 

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Edgar Award winner Joe R. Lansdale (the Hap and Leonard series) returns to the piney, dangerous woods of East Texas. In this career retrospective of his best crime stories, Lansdale shows exactly why critics continue to compare him to Elmore Leonard, Donald Westlake, Flannery O’Connor, and William Faulkner.
  • In the 1950s, a young small-town projectionist mixes it up with a violent gang.
  • When Mr. Bear is not alerting us to the dangers of forest fires, he lives a life of debauchery and murder.
  • A brother and sister travel to Oklahoma to recover the dead body of their uncle.
  • A lonely man engages in dubious acts while pining for his rubber duckie.
In this collection of nineteen unforgettable crime tales, Joe R. Lansdale brings his legendary mojo and witty grit to harrowing heists, revenge, homicide, and mayhem. No matter how they begin, things are bound to get ugly—and fast.

“A terrifically gifted storyteller.” -– Washington Post Book Review

“One of the best crime writers in the business.” -- Ace Atkins, New York Times bestselling author of The Revelators

“While Lansdale’s work is as varied as the regions of Texas, there is one common link through it all: his brilliant storytelling.” –- Grimdark Magazine

Click to Purchase!

An Excerpt
Joe R. Lansdale

            But as she negotiated the curve a blue Buick seemed to grow out of the ground in front of her. It was parked on the shoulder of the road, at the peak of the curve, its nose sticking out a foot too far, its rear end against the moon-wet, silver railing that separated the curve from a mountainous plunge.

            Had she been going an appropriate speed, missing the Buick wouldn’t have been a problem, but at her speed she was swinging too far right, directly in line with it, and was forced, after all, to use her brakes. When she did, the back wheels slid and the brakes groaned and the front of the Chevy hit the Buick, and there was a sound like an explosion and then for a dizzy instant she felt as if she were in the tumblers of a dryer.

            Through the windshield came: Moonlight. Blackness. Moonlight.

            One high bounce and a tight roll, and the Chevy came to rest upright with the engine dead, the right side flush against the railing. Another inch of jump or greater impact against the rail, and the Chevy would have gone over.

            Ellen felt a sharp pain in her leg and reached down to discover that during the tumble she had banged it against something, probably the gear shift, and had ripped her stocking and her flesh. Blood was trickling into her shoe. Probing her leg cautiously with the tips of her fingers, she determined the wound wasn’t bad and that all other body parts were operative.

            She unfastened her seat belt, and as a matter of habit, located her purse and slipped its strap over her shoulder. She got out of the Chevy feeling wobbly, eased around front of it and saw the hood and bumper and roof were crumpled. A wisp of radiator steam hissed from beneath the wadded hood, rose into the moonlight and dissolved.

            She turned her attentions to the Buick. Its tail end was now turned to her, and as she edged alongside it, she saw the front left side had been badly damaged. Fearful of what she might see, she glanced inside.

            The moonlight shone through the rear windshield bright as a spotlight and revealed no one, but the back seat was slick with something dark and wet and there was plenty of it. A foul scent seeped out of a partially rolled-down back window. It was a hot coppery smell that gnawed at her nostrils and ached her stomach.

            God, someone had been hurt. Maybe thrown free of the car, or perhaps they had gotten out and crawled off. But when? She and the Chevy had been airborne for only a moment, and she had gotten out of the vehicle instants after it ceased to roll. Surely she would have seen someone get out of the Buick, and if they had been thrown free by the collision, wouldn’t at least one of the Buick’s doors be open? If it had whipped back and closed, it seemed unlikely that it would be locked, and all the doors of the Buick were locked, and all the glass was intact, and only on her side was it rolled down, and only a crack. Enough for the smell of the blood to escape, not enough for a person to slip through unless they were thin and flexible as a feather.

            On the other side of the Buick, on the ground, between the back door and the railing, there were drag marks and a thick swath of blood, and another swath on the top of the railing; it glowed there in the moonlight as if it were molasses laced with radioactivity.

Ellen moved cautiously to the railing and peered over.

            No one lay mangled and bleeding and oozing their guts. The ground was not as precarious there as she expected it. It was pebbly and sloped out gradually and there was a trail going down it. The trail twisted slightly and as it deepened the foliage grew denser on either side of it. Finally it curlicued its way into the dark thicket of a forest below, and from the forest, hot on the wind, came the strong turpentine tang of pines and something less fresh and not as easily identifiable.

            Now she saw someone moving down there, floating up from the forest like an apparition; a white face split by silver—braces, perhaps. She could tell from the way this someone moved that it was a man. She watched as he climbed the trail and came within examination range. He seemed to be surveying her as carefully as she was surveying him.

            Could this be the driver of the Buick?

            As he came nearer Ellen discovered she could not identify the expression he wore. It was neither joy or anger or fear or exhaustion or pain. It was somehow all and none of these.

            When he was ten feet away, still looking up, that same odd expression on his face, she could hear him breathing. He was breathing with exertion, but not to the extent she thought him tired or injured. It was the sound of someone who had been about busy work.

            She yelled down, “Are you injured?”

            He turned his head quizzically, like a dog trying to make sense of a command, and it occurred to Ellen that he might be knocked about in the head enough to be disoriented.

            “I’m the one who ran into your car,” she said. “Are you all right?”

            His expression changed then, and it was most certainly identifiable this time. He was surprised and angry. He came up the trail quickly, took hold of the top railing, his fingers going into the blood there, and vaulted over and onto the gravel.

            Ellen stepped back out of his way and watched him from a distance. The guy made her nervous. Even close up, he looked like some kind of spook.

            He eyed her briefly, glanced at the Chevy, turned to look at the Buick.

            “It was my fault,” Ellen said.

            He didn’t reply, but returned his attention to her and continued to cock his head in that curious dog sort of way.

            Ellen noticed that one of his shirt sleeves was stained with blood, and that there was blood on the knees of his pants, but he didn’t act as if he were hurt in any way. He reached into his pants pocket and pulled out something and made a move with his wrist. Out flicked a lock-blade knife. The thin edge of it sucked up the moonlight and spat it out in a silver spray that fanned wide when he held it before him and jiggled it like a man working a stubborn key into a lock. He advanced toward her, and as he came, his lips split and pulled back at the corners, exposing not braces, but metal-capped teeth that matched the sparkle of his blade.

Joe R. Lansdale (Savage SeasonThe Donut Legion) is the internationally bestselling author of more than fifty novels, including the popular, long-running Hap and Leonard novels. Many of his cult classics have been adapted for television and film, most famously the films Bubba Ho-Tep and Cold in July and the Hap and Leonard series on Sundance TV and Netflix. Lansdale has written numerous screenplays and teleplays, including for the iconic Batman: The Animated Series. He has won an Edgar Award for The Bottoms and ten Stoker Awards, and he has been designated a World Horror Grandmaster. Lansdale, like many of his characters, lives in East Texas, with his wife, Karen.

Each receives print copies of
Things Get Ugly & Born for Trouble
(US only; ends midnight, CDT, 8/18/23)