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THE LAST KING
by A. Yamina Collins
Twenty-eight year Emmy Hughes has never quite fit in---she's six feet tall, dark-skinned, and daydreams of being Galadriel from Lord of the Rings. But when she is badly injured in a car accident that kills her mother, Emmy does not dream of fantastical worlds anymore---she just wants her shattered life to be normal again.
Unfortunately, normalcy is the last thing in store for her once she meets Lake George's newest arrival, Dr. Gilead Knightly. Granted immortality from a line of people whose Great Ancestor marched into the Garden of Eden and ate from the Tree of Life, Gilead has been alive for centuries and has met everyone from Nubian kings to Napoleon.
But Gilead and his eccentric family are also hunted beings because God considers the Edenites' possession of immortality to be theft. And for thousands of years He has dealt with their transgression by sending each of them a "Glitch" ---an unsuspecting human meant to retrieve this stolen "property" of immortality and kill them off.
When Emmy discovers that she is Gilead's Glitch, she is not only thrown into a world of immortals who eat bone marrow, panthers who read minds, and a family whose blood is made of pulsing gold, but she finds herself the target of Gilead's vengeance: he must get rid of her before she gets rid of him.
Easier said than done. Because Glitches are not only an Edenite's greatest threat---they're also their greatest love.
EXCERPT – The Last King, upcoming episode #5
Stepping quietly into the greenroom, he can tell, before he fully enters, that Emmy is in a deep sleep, just by the rhythm of her breathing.
Good, he thinks. She’ll be out for a long while yet.
At first, he moves towards the window, looking out into the night sky. It’s going to rain soon, yes even in the middle of July.Then he turns a lamp on and inspects the bed and rug. Clean as a whistle. Matilda has done a marvelous job, and even Emmy’s clothes are back on, looking good as new.
Standing over to the bed, he studies Emmy for a while.
It could be done so easily; he could kill her in the flick of an eye —split her body apart like he was splitting hairs.
Matilda has leaned the Sword of Jarden up against the dresser, and it sits there now, sparkling and bright.
Picking it up, Gilead wields the sword in his hand with such speed and dexterity that it makes a sound as he cuts it through the air.
It’s tempting isn’t it, he tells himself? To use it on her.
Very tempting. And it really would be less of a hassle if ended this thing tonight, just as his mother wants him to do. But…but…
The sword is heating up in his grip. In a couple of minutes it will be so hot that fire will leap from around the edges of the blade.
Quickly, he lays the sword down on the window sill, then meanders back to the bed, and watches Emmy again.
Now is as good a time as any, he decides.
Carefully, he turns Emmy over on her stomach, and placing a hand in his pocket, he takes out a small syringe whose needle point he positions against the skin of his own forearm. It’s the radial vein he wants, and the tip slides in so easily, so smoothly, that seconds later, the syringe is being filled with the gold-colored, hot fluid that is his blood.
The fluid pulsates, some would say like lava, and when he is done filling up the syringe, he stabs the needle through the back of Emmy’s t-shirt, allowing the needle point to settle against her skin.
Any location will do, he knows. As long as it’s in the general vicinity, his blood will seek out what is broken in a person, what is not perfection, and instantly fix it.
But to be sure, Gilead gives her three injections instead of one – in the mid-section of her back, at the base of her spine, and finally at the nape of her neck.
A faint snapping sound can be heard. It is not the snap of bone or of disks being broken, but that of shattered parts of the body being sealed back into place.
When he finishes, he puts the syringe back in his pocket, moves to the edge of the bed, and just sits there, deep in thought for a while.
Outside, the rain has started, but only a drizzle it seems.
Looking down at Emmy, his eyes fall on the rounded smoothness of one of her shoulder’s, which is half exposed
Scratching his chin, Gilead hesitates, then moves back toward the center of the bed, peering all the more closely at her.
Skin is a funny thing. It’s a fascinating material. It can be ugly and withered, or smooth and alluring. Hers is the type of skin that will never see veins popping through it, nor will age touch it too quickly.
Gilead looks towards the door, then back again at Emmy. How still she is – as still as the grave.
Uneasily—why am I doing this, he asks himself?—he lies down on the bed beside her, facing the ceiling, and he crosses his arms over his chest.
No one will enter the room, he figures. Or at least, no one should.
Matilda has done her job and won’t come back, and as for Markus – Gilead swears to himself that if Markus comes nosying around here, he’ll beat him through and through.
Markus, he snarls. The little brat!
Isn’t Gilead free to do as pleases? Can’t he lie here for a few seconds, undisturbed? There is no harm in this, and he is only curious, that’s all.
Closing his eyes, he leans his head closer to Emmy, and with trepidation, he slowly presses his cheek against her shoulder. A clean, soapy scent rises from her skin.
What was that scent on her earlier, he ponders? Was it cinnamon or sugar or peaches or….?
He inhales, pauses, then looks again towards the door. Is someone on the other side, out in the hallway? No.
Finally he rests his head more fully upon her. There is something about her darkness that is elegant, mysterious and delightful.
Men are fools when they succumb to the flesh of women, but for Gilead this is only a single, innocent moment. After this, he will go back to his wisdom, and his strength of mind, and never will he think about her again.
It’s only for this brief instant in time that he wants to lay here, in the quiet space of this room. Can he not just close his eyes? He’s been alive so long, and never does he feel like he has truly rested.
( Continued... )
© 2015 All rights reserved. Book excerpt reprinted by permission of the author, A. Yamina Collins. This excerpt is used for promotional purposes only. Do not reproduce, copy or use without the publisher's written permission. Copyright infringement is a serious offense. Share a link to this page or the author's website if you really like this promotional excerpt.
Purchase THE LAST KING by A. Yamina Collins
With These Hands: A Country Girl Came To Town
by Bonnie Taylor-Williams
With These Hands is an inspiring story of the life of Selena, who as a young girl in 1941 arrived in the big windy City of Chicago on a bus from Memphis Tennessee by way of Clarksdale Mississippi with all that she owned in her two hands. Her new baby girl in one arm, her suitcase and handmade quilt was in her other arm. Away from her mother, family and everything considered home for the first time in her young life Selena had no idea what the future held for her…but God knew.
As a young newlywed, new mother in a new town, from cooking all of her meals in her one speckled pan to becoming a successful business woman owning multiple beauty and hair weev salons in Chicago and Detroit. Selena who began as a “kitchen beautician” went from charging fifty cents a head in her kitchen to charging hundreds and then thousands per head in her professional salons.
Teaching and sharing her craft of Hair Weev Technology with cosmetologists all over the world exposed Selena’s perseverance which has always been a part of Selena’s nature way back then and has served as an inspiration to many others ever since. *Weev: patented spelling
Excerpt from Chapter Nine
Being a single mother, working day and night, trying to feed her four children, it took some time before Mary noticed. Six months passed; Selena began to gain weight and her mother finally figured it out. She didn’t know when, where, how or who, but she knew her daughter’s belly was growing. The baby was just about due by this time. Selena remembered taking her usual bath in the tin wash tub that the family had and noticing her stomach getting bigger, but she didn’t know why.
Mary never, ever talked to Selena about anything. Selena didn’t know about sex and its relationship to making babies. She didn’t even know about her monthly period, until it happened. I guess some parents, especially back in those days, felt if they did not speak about those things, there was a better chance that nothing would happen. They acted as if their children, especially their girls, didn’t know anything; they couldn’t or wouldn’t do anything…so much for that theory.
“WHO DID YOU GO WITH”? Mary yelled at Selena while looking at her stomach. Selena didn’t even know what that meant.
Mama’s voice went up a few more octaves. “Did you lay down with somebody? Who did you lay down with? Who was it?”
Selena began to tell her about JW coming by Daddy’s house because his car had stopped and Daddy and Paul were out in the field working. Mama didn’t say much more to her, except that she would have to write and tell the boy. She instructed her to wait until the baby was born, which wouldn’t be long and send a picture.
Mary had the wind knocked out of her, knowing the difficulties she faced as a single mother, trying to feed her four children and herself while making fifty cents a week doing domestic work, but she cow girled up and did what she knew how to do. She worked hard, prayed and trusted in God.
Once he realized that Mary was not coming back to him or Mississippi. Henry sent money to Mary in Memphis from his wages he received from working in the fields. Cousin Booker was still one of God’s angel’s helping Mary feed her children and helping in any other way that he could.
Mary wrote and told Henry about their daughter’s pregnancy. He was shocked, but he increased his financial support as often as he could.
Paul was old enough to help out now and he got a job working at the drug store, making deliveries, where he met and made a new friend, Elmer Parker. Elmer had a bike that he used to make his deliveries and get around. As Elmer and Paul’s friendship grew stronger, they became real buddies.
The drugstore was owned by a white husband and wife who had a baby. By this time Selena had stopped going to school in the ninth grade. She would stay home most of the time, but she would go to work with her brother, Paul, to get out of the house. The store owner began paying Selena to watch her baby, which allowed the store owner a little more freedom to help her husband in the store. Selena would play with the baby, rock or push the baby around in the buggy for a while.
That is when Paul introduced his sister, Selena, to his new friend, Elmer. Overnight, it seemed, the three of them became tight. Paul and Selena took him home to meet Mama and their two younger sisters. Sometimes he would eat supper with them; sometimes he wouldn’t out of fear that he would wear out his welcome. Though Mary didn’t have much, she would always offer to share whatever she had with him and anybody else.
Elmer liked his new friends. He liked that they were a family. Most of all, he loved the way they treated him. He began to feel a part of their family, but who he liked the most was Selena. She was pretty to him and his heart went out to her as a young girl pregnant, whereas whoever the man or the boy responsible was virtually invisible. There was no one in sight ever, not even a mention of whom the father could be, until Elmer asked. Selena explained that the boy lived in Mississippi. According to her, the putative father was a nice person, who didn’t know that she was pregnant. However, Selena assured Elmer once the father found out about the impending birth; he would help her take care of their baby.
To Elmer, the coast wasn’t totally clear, but he couldn’t stop his heartfelt feelings from growing for Selena and her unborn child. He was very attentive to her whenever he was around her, which was every day as Elmer, Paul and Selena would walk home together. On the days that Selena didn’t work, Elmer would still walk with Paul, rolling his bike alongside of him, just to be able to see Selena.
Selena thought of Elmer as a real nice person and a good friend. In fact, she liked him. She liked the way he treated her, but she had reservations when it came to Elmer. For one, she thought as soon as JW and his family found out about the baby, they would probably get married. At the very least, they would see to it that she and the baby were taken care of.
( Continued... )
© 2015 All rights reserved. Book excerpt reprinted by permission of the author, Bonnie Taylor-Williams. Do not reproduce, copy or use without the author's written permission. This excerpt is used for promotional purposes only.
Purchase With These Hands: A Country Girl Came To Town
Meet the Author
Bonnie Taylor-Williams, a twenty-plus years cancer survivor, a professional third generation Hair Weev* technician, designer and instructor credits her mother for igniting her love for reading. Bonnie’s mother began sitting Bonnie and her brothers at the kitchen table and walking them to the neighborhood Chicago public library instilling the importance of reading at a very early age. Unwilling to completely rely on her children’s school teachers and they had great teachers, Bonnie’s mother taught them how to sound out the words, breaking them into syllables, teaching them spelling, how to look them up either in the back of their spelling books or the dictionary and how to create sentences.
As a child Bonnie loved listening to the history of her family through the stories shared and told by her mother Juanita, her grandmother Selena and her great grandmother Mary. Bonnie’s love of reading books and listening to the family storytelling was soon escalated into desires of writing books herself but wondered how it could be possible when she had never seen any books with people or characters on them that looked like her. Neither had she seen any writers of any books she had read that looked like her as a child until that one day her mother surprised her with a brand new book. The book was “I Know Why the Caged Bird sings” by Maya Angelou.
Maya Angelou was one of the people who came on TV along with Dr. Martin Luther King, Malcom X, President Kennedy, Barbara Jordan and Muhammad Ali that everyone in the house had to be real quiet and listen, so that the adults could hear. Therefore Bonnie knew who she was. After reading “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” it was like the lighting of the Christmas tree, an electrifying spirit of hope and excitement filled her heart, mind and body.
Bonnie stated, “It has taken me several years to complete this dream/ book due to everyday life which translates to a lack of dedication. Now, I am loving this writing thing, I knew I would! It takes dedication like anything else you really desire.”
The Devil Made Me Do It
by Colette R. Harrell
The voluptuous Esther Wiley has always known that she is special. She’s a tiara-wearing, wand-carrying kind of Cinderella princess in disguise. The problem that her very own Fairy Godmother, the Prophetess Mother Reed, struggles with is getting her to live like it.
Briggs Stokes is the reluctant heir to his father’s worldwide, multimillion-dollar televangelist ministry, yet he yearns to be his own man. His past mistakes have caused him a private life of hurt and loneliness.
Esther and Briggs meet and develop a deep soul connection, until tragedy strikes and the two are thrust apart. Their separation leads each down a different path scattered with emotional minefields. While each step they take brings them closer to who they were always meant to be, the devil is on assignment. He sends in reinforcements to usher in confusion and create chaos, and soon no one is safe. The members of Love Zion church reel from the rumors, innuendo, and downright sabotage that is going on around them.
When others devise evil schemes to seek the destruction of Esther and Briggs through jealousy, greed, and murder, only divine intervention can save them. As an all-out battle for dominion breaks out in the heavens, will Esther and Briggs become a casualty of war?
Book Review for The Devil Made Me Do It
"The Devil Made Me Do It" is Christian Fiction at its best. The novel is full of lessons about passion, pain and God's abundant blessings. Filled with suspense, laughter and touching moments, this page-turning novel will keep you on the edge of your seat until the last page. Colette is a new author to definitely watch. Brava, Ms. Harrell.
--- Victoria Christopher Murray, Best Selling Author
Excerpt from The Devil Made Me Do It
Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep (Genesis 1:2).
Two ominous figures sat in quiet contemplation, the larger one’s head was gargantuan in nature, and foul droplets of acidic mucus fell from his protruding fangs. The smaller one stood sixteen feet tall and his rapier tail was wrapped protectively around his middle. He sat as still as cold hard stone. His sinister eyes were yellow rimmed and telegraphed evil cunning. He was known as The Leader. Their silhouettes cast eerie shadows against the backdrop of the smoke-filled flames that spewed from the lake of fire.
“Ummm, this is my favorite place. Listen to the melodic sound of souls screaming in agony—it is music to my ears. If you concentrate, you can hear the desperate pleas for release. Yessss . . .It allows me to know that all is right in our world,” The High Master said.
The Leader shuddered as the menacing timbre of The High Master’s voice snaked fear around his chest. For him, it was equal to the singe of demon skin from a thousand innocent prayers; he loathed it. His tail subconsciously tightened as he awaited his newest orders.
The High Master continued, “These human souls are pathetic with their self-serving natures. They frighten at the sound of our bumps in the dark, but create havoc in their own lives. What idiots they are and not fit for company until they have totally crossed to our side. And even then they tire me soooo . . .”
The Leader didn’t stir; his thoughts were of survival. He refused to speak. He knew a wrong word could cause such suffering and pain. The High Master’s punishments are prompt and fierce. One seeks death, but yet, death will not come.
The High Master continued his tirade, his grimace displaying double rows of slime-covered fangs. His was a chilling profile. “Your charges are young. Both are being raised in good homes, and, as a result, they are overconfident creatures. Leader, do not underestimate their youth; innocence is a powerful weapon. In their kingdom, the weak become strong. But we must prey on that weakness and use it to our advantage. You must destroy them before they complete their purpose. I am giving you this head start; you must not fail.”
After speaking, he stood his full twenty feet in height, his shoulders reared back as his frame vibrated with his frustrated bellowing. “In the beginning, we owned their world. After the fall, we adjusted; the land we were given was dark and empty, but we were content with our lot. Then He whose name is not spoken, created man, and we were once again demoted. All we seek is our rightful power, our rightful place. Make haste, bold one, and steal, kill, and destroy all that stands in your way.”
The Leader bowed his head in submission.
“And, Leader—this was a most productive conversation. You are learning.”
The Leader’s tail unwrapped from his torso as he swiftly rose and slithered toward his point of ascent into the Earth realm. He was determined not to fail.
The Detroit pollution and cold, foggy weather covered Esther Wiley’s shivering body in crisp, arctic shades of blue gray, reminiscent of watercolors dancing in the jelly jar after her arts and crafts class. She shivered, but stubbornly refused to let her mother put a scarf around her small head. She was going to be Cinderella. Cinderella didn’t wear an old ugly scarf. Well, maybe when she was cleaning, but she wasn’t trying to be that kind of Cinderella. No ashes to ashes and dust to dust for her. She was all about glass slippers and diamond tiaras.
Esther’s round cheeks were rosy from the wind, her hated freckles beet red glowing in contrast to the caramel cream of her skin. Her knobby knees were pressed together whenever she wasn’t bouncing from foot to foot in the frigid air. She was on a mission. She wasn’t allowing a hideous scarf to mess up her hair in exchange for a little warmth. She had endured two hours of “hold the grease jar lid on your ear pain” that produced silky pressed hair. There was torture in the quest for straight tresses. In her seven-year-old mind, her priorities were clear.
Esther’s petulant voice screeched. “Mama, how much longer do we have to wait? I can’t stand it. I want to try on the glass slipper—right now.”
“Mind your manners. In a moment, I’m going to give you what your Grandma Vic used to call a private deliverance in a public place.”
A curl of warm breath escaped when Esther sighed. She turned away, rolled her eyes, and then stared defiantly at her mother. The same hands that calmly cuddled her at night now moved restlessly after giving up trying to place a warm scarf on Esther’s head. Esther didn’t dare speak. She had badgered her mother to bring her and her two best friends to downtown Detroit for the Cinderella contest. When they arrived, the line to enter the historical skyscraper snaked around the building. Two hours later they still couldn’t see the front entrance. As the wind bellowed, time stood still, but because of her mother’s mood, she resisted the urge to tell her she was freezing.
She peeked at her friends’ reaction to her mother’s scolding. She could see Sheri and Deborah were indifferent to her embarrassment; their faces tense as they craned their necks to see the start of the line.
Esther puffed warm breath into her mittens. “Y’all shouldn’t have come if you didn’t want to wait.”
Sheri’s elfin face was etched in anxiety. Her shoulders sagging, she grimaced at the time on her watch. She leaned forward in a panicked whisper. “You know I had to sneak out of the house to come. If my mama finds out I’m here, I’ma get a whipping.”
“You should have told her,” Deborah smacked her sour grape gum, then twirled it around her finger.
Sheri’s jaw tightened. “I tried.” She pointed her finger in a mock role play of her mother. “‘Ain’t no such thing as Cinderella, and sho’ ain’t no Prince Charming. Get in them school books. There isn’t anything worse than being ignorant.’ Y’all know how my mama gets.”
Laughing, Deborah slapped her hand against her thigh. “Uh, uh, uh,” she stuck her gum back into her mouth and popped it. “Girl, you sounded just like your mama.”
With hands on her small hips, Esther swung her head toward Deborah. “Well, what about you? You could have stayed home.”
“Oh no, where you two go, I go. You can’t leave me out. I can stand this girly stuff for one day.” Deborah eyeballed her and popped her gum for emphasis.
Esther sighed in her trademark dramatic fashion. “Please stop playing with your gum. That’s just nasty.”
She wished her friends cared as much about the Cinderella contest as she did. Sheri was the smart one, but her whippings from her mama were the talk of the block. Deborah was the tomboy; she had seven brothers.
Esther’s older sister, Phyllis once said, “Deborah’s mama better take that chile in hand quick ’cause if she don’t, she gon’ end up funny.”
Esther tried to explain that’s what she liked about Deborah—that she was funny. Phyllis just stared at her with small slit eyes, sucked her teeth, and told her to get out of her room.
She didn’t know why Phyllis always said that because half the drawers and closet space were hers, and she slept on the bottom bunk bed. But before she got pinched . . . Or worse, she’d leave the room.
Esther understood her friends’ mood; it was her mother, she couldn’t figure out. Mrs. Wiley reminded her of herself when she had to go to the doctor and get a shot; frightened.
Esther swallowed, summoned her courage, and pulled on her mother’s coat sleeve. “Mama, what’s wrong? Why did you say we might have to leave before I try on the slipper?”
Her mother’s eyes blinked in rapid succession. “I—well—I—girl, quit asking me questions.”
In a huff, Esther folded her arms, and clamped her lips tight. In a snail-like increment, thirty minutes dragged by, and finally they entered the department store.
It was so beautiful; Hudson’s department store had turned the tenth-floor lobby into a lighted winter wonderland. In the center of the room, a handsome prince with dark hair and sapphire eyes kneeled before each little girl as she sat on the white, satin bench and tried on the glass slipper. To a young heart, it was breathtaking.
Esther was so excited that she peed—just a little—in her underwear. When it was her time to approach the bench and sit down, she closed her eyes, folded her hands, prayed, and waited for the miracle that her grandmother had assured her God could deliver.
“Yes. Yes . . . Yes!” she squealed. The glass slipper fit her small foot perfectly.
Her mother cried out, “Oh my goodness; you won, you won.”
Her friends danced around, and they all jumped up and down together. It took them a few minutes—the silence around them incredulous—to notice that they were the only ones celebrating.
Esther hugged her mother around the waist and peeked at the crowd. Somber pale faces reflected shock, anger, and disbelief; it was plain that their small entourage’s happiness lacked the crowd’s support.
The distressed prince rose, his back ramrod straight. He confidently looked over at the tall, austere man who seemed to be in charge.
“I am sorry, miss,” the man advanced on Esther’s mother, his hawkish nose tilted in an imperious manner. “It isn’t a proper fit. Please relinquish the slipper to the next person. You and your daughter are holding up the line.”
Esther wailed in protest. “But, Mama—” Her mother placed a finger over her mouth and used her other hand to wipe her burgeoning tears.
Mrs. Wiley’s voice was soft and gentle, her hands tender in their ministrations of comfort. “Shush, baby, let’s go.” Her face was strained, and her eyes inflamed with a century of unspoken words and kindled rage.
Esther discerned something unspeakable had happened, and she should not ask about it. She grabbed her mother’s hand and placed her other hand in Sheri’s, who then took hold of Deborah’s. They were linked; one.
The friends were confused; somehow they had done something . . . Wrong. The swirling abyss in their stomachs paid homage to their guilt. Shame hovered over them like the Detroit factory’s smokestack stench. They huddled together, drawing comfort from each other. Stiff and silent, they exited the store into fresh falling snow. Esther felt the chill of the cold air all around her. She released Sheri’s hand and with tears frozen on her face, spoke in a meek, trembling voice. “Mama, my face is cold.”
Her mother reached down and slowly tied the ugly floral printed scarf around her silky pressed hair.
As the small, dejected group hurried down the street, a shadow followed along the wall; its long form slithered between the cracks of worn buildings as it hissed along the way. It was oblivious to the noise of traffic and other people rushing to and fro. It was a single-minded creature, and they were not his problem. He was only concerned with his assignment.
Today had been a good start, and he was pleased but not satisfied. He was like The High Master in that regard. Until the fruit from the vine was spoiled, his job wasn’t complete. For each of his young assignments, he was just beginning. He knew from experience it was better to catch the fruit before it matured. He watched as they scrambled forward, seeking solace in each other’s presence. As he followed, he wore a look of utter contempt for his charges. His yellow eyes gleamed eerily with a malignant delight against the growing darkness of the day. After all, it was a job well done.
( Continued... )
© 2014 All rights reserved. Book excerpt reprinted by permission of the author, Colette R. Harrell. Do not reproduce, copy or use without the author's written permission. Copyright infringement is a serious offense. This excerpt is used for promotional purposes only. Share a link to this page or the author's website if you really like this sneak peek.
Purchase The Devil Made Me Do It by Colette Harrell
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Topics include: suicide, abuse, adultery, company fraud, and obsession.
Genre: Christian Fiction
About the Author
Colette Harrell, wants you to know that she’s like you, God’s chosen vessel. She has come to be a gift, to be an encourager and a light that reflects God’s goodness.
She’s a wife, mother, author and playwright. A Detroit native, she currently calls Ohio home. She holds a master’s and is a Director of Social Services. Writing with humor and compassion to engage and minister to the human heart. Her motto is: whatever you do, do it “for love alone.”
Her latest novel, Tell The Truth; The Devil Won’t will thrill this October 2015. It is filled with wisdom and humor. This adventurous love story goes where Ms. Harrell loves to tread, down an unbeaten path. No millionaires rescuing damsels in distress—although she enjoys these reads herself—but every day people, falling and getting back up.
The Devil Made Me Do It was her debut novel. It was nominated for The 2015 Phillis Wheatley Book Awards in First Fiction. It has been held as one of Black Pearl Magazine’s, top ten Christian fiction books for 2014. In addition, Read Between The Lines radio show, named it as one of its overall top ten books for 2014.
Make no mistake, her sophomore novel, Tell The Truth, The Devil Won’t will cement her as an author to watch.
Connect with Colette R. Harrell
Tell the Truth The Devil Won't
Sequel to The Devil Made Me Do It
Enough was Never Enough: A Novella
by Michelle Morgan Spady
Evelynn “Jade” Baxter, author and successful businesswoman, commands a crowd of young, urban, up-and-coming women. Jade's followers believe she is the epitome of success, but what they don’t know is Jade is haunted by her past. Despite her success, more than anything Jade wants to forget her painful past. Unfortunately for Jade, someone very close has no intentions of letting her forget her not so illustrious beginning.
When her twin sister, Lynn Baxter, decides to expose Jade's past to her followers, she sets off an emotional roller coaster in Jade's life, as well as her own. To make matters worse, Lynn's cruelty could cause Jade to lose the man she loves.
EXCERPT: INNOCENCE TAKEN, STRENGTH GIVEN
Look at her, there she goes again. Always dressed to the nines, make that to the tens. It’s rare that you’ll find anything wrong with her, no one does. It’s her self-confidence and the way she just shows up. She enters a room with that big smile, head up, back straight and one long leg before the other. Even the right shade of panty hose. You can’t help but notice them as the bellman opens the door of that bright red, shiny, 2014 Porsche 918 Spyder, and she swings those legs out, tightly closed so that you never see what’s between them, or has been. Only those who’ve been there can testify to that, and boy would they have a story to tell. If thighs could talk.
That car is worth over $800,000, add a few options and you’re way over $900,000. True testament to what she’s pulling in nowadays for a salary. Her black six inch Jimmy Choo heels slowly hit the street, like a RG III pass to Desean Jackson or Pierre Garcon. Every strand of hair in place. No weave for her. Her salon attendant can attest to that. Why? Because she sees her once a week, and even more if she’s making an appearance that day. Like today, she had made a stop in her salon right before this appearance.
It’s obvious her favorite color must be red because the color is represented from her car to the soles of her Jimmy Choo shoes. Today it is the slim pencil black skirt and crisp white long sleeved blouse. Sleeves and collar turned up. Blouse tailored to fit her perfect size eight top, just as the skirt hugs her 24 inch waist and 34 inch bottom. Even the jewelry is carefully selected. Never too much to let the public know how really well she is doing, but just enough to make the statement that she wants for nothing. Chanel earrings, Michael Kors necklace, Rolex watch; not much, but just enough to speak volumes about who Evelynn “Jade” Baxter really is. The public knows, author, entrepreneur, sought after public speaker, twin sister of Lynn Baxter. Noted for her affiliations in various elite women’s organizations, explained why her Google Plus calendar was always maxed out for time. She wore so many hats, that it was very easy for her to pick one for the day, and toss it aside for another in a matter of minutes.
Today she was Evelynn “Jade” Baxter, author. Scheduled to speak before a crowd of hungry, aspiring young women all wanting to be like Jade. She was known as Evelyn only around family, and even that was shortened to Eve when she was on good terms with everyone, which was rare.
“Welcome, Ms. Baxter! May I help you with something today?” The bellman extends his hand as she begins to push a button to turn everything off in that automobile of intelligent technology before she exits. Before she made her decision on the car, she did her research to see what other famous person was driving one. She had heard that actor, Jerry Seinfeld was among the first to accept delivery in America on a 918 Spyder. It impressed her to read somewhere that tennis ace, Maria Sharapova, was a noted Porsche ambassador, and known to favor the 918. She reads up on stats like these before she indulges in any materialistic object. Her name is among the rich and famous at the age of thirty-six. And in a town this small, it’s not hard to stick out and be noticed for anything that you do, be it good or bad.
“Sure, Jeffrey, thanks, and it’s great to be back! Gorgeous Spring day isn’t it?”
( Continued... )
© 2015 All rights reserved. This unedited book excerpt reprinted by permission of the author, Michelle Morgan Spady. Do not reproduce, copy or use without the author's written permission. This excerpt is used for promotional purposes only.
Purchase Enough Was Never Enough: A Novella
by Michelle Morgan Spady
About the Author
Michelle Morgan Spady is the author/co-author of four self-published books, Enough Was Never Enough: A Novella, An Artist and His Obsession, 7 Days 2 Tell, and ShoozyQ and the AB Crew in Bully on the Playground. Her children's book projects were collaborated with her son, Bradford O. Spady, an artist and visual storyteller.
Michelle is the VP of Creative Services with B'Artful, LLC in McLean, VA. B'Artful is a company that empowers, inspires, and promotes emerging authors, and visual artists by providing them with opportunities, and space to enhance, and exhibit their creative talents.
Hostile Eyewitness by Tyora Moody
Serena Manchester Series (Book One)
Depressed from the complications of a head injury, SERENA MANCHESTER seeks solitude in the hometown she left almost twenty-five years before. Unknown to Serena, her hometown's landscape has changed and unseemly elements have seeped into the quaint Southern seaport town.
One night Serena witnesses a gang-related crime. She thinks she recognizes one of the young men, but chooses not to identify him. What if her brain injury has deceived her perceptions? Her estranged family has already reminded her why she left town in the first place. Drawing attention to herself and perhaps threatening her well-being is the last thing Serena needs.
Serena is determined to keep a low-profile, but Trey Evans persistently tries to draw her from her hiding place. With her track record with men, Serena isn't interested. What does she have in common with a minister even if they were childhood friends?
When tragedy strikes close to home, Serena can no longer keep her head in the sand. Feeling responsible, Serena's reporter skills kick in and to the angst of the local police, she decides to start her own investigation.
What began as journey to recover her sanity now becomes a fight for redemption.
Excerpt from Chapter 1 of HOSTILE EYEWITNESS, Serena Manchester Series, Book 1
The boy in the aisle seemed to be backing up to the end of the aisle, away from the front. It occurred to me that he would see me, so I scrambled around to the other aisle. I looked around at my surroundings, trying to figure out what to do. I turned my attention to the mirror to observe the approaching boy. He seemed to be scared and not sure of himself.
It suddenly dawned on me that if he turned around and looked up, he would be able to see me in the mirror. The mirror was angled in such a way that he might be able to see me crouching down like a hopeless idiot. As I attempted to steady my rapid breathing, distant police sirens sounded outside the store.
The boy wearing the red jacket shouted, “Let’s go! Now!” Then he headed out of the store, the boy in the hoodie running after him.
The boy who was down the aisle didn’t move as fast, and he turned his head as he went, as if looking for an alternate door through which to exit the store. As I crouched on the floor, pain shot through my calves. But that pain didn’t rock me as much as the glimpse I got of the boy in the aisle. Despite the dark blue Charlotte Bobcats cap hanging over his eyes, when he turned, I saw his face in the mirror.
I know him.
I sucked in my breath sharply as I watched the young man finally decide to run toward the front of the store. As he exited the store, in the back of my mind I hoped he didn’t get caught. If he was who I thought he was, I felt for sure that young man was in the wrong place at the wrong time.
I waited a minute or two, and then I stood, feeling sharp pains up and down my legs, especially the leg that had the broken ankle a year ago. I limped to the front of the store, almost tripping over my own feet.
“Marty! Marty, can you hear me?” I shouted.
I peered over the counter, catching a glimpse of blood spatter across the tile floor and on items behind the counter. Marty lay in a pool of blood, which appeared to have formed around his head. That boy had aimed directly at Marty’s head. The second shot had been unnecessary, and so vicious. The boy had shot to kill him.
Why was the boy in the Bobcats cap with them?
From the corner of my eye, I could see flashing blue lights as a vehicle pulled into the store parking lot. I would have to figure out what to tell the police when they came inside. I hoped with all my heart that I was mistaken about whose face I had seen. He was family. My family had a reputation is this town, which was one of the many reasons why I had left.
( Continued... )
© 2015 All rights reserved. Book excerpt reprinted by permission of the author, Tyora Moody. I have permission as her online publicist to promote this excerpt. Do not reproduce, copy or use without the author's written permission. This excerpt is used for promotional purposes only.
Purchase Hostile Eyewitness: Serena Manchester Series (Book One)
Meet the Author
Tyora Moody is an award-winning author and literary entrepreneur. Tyora has coined her fiction books as Soul-Searching Suspense. Her debut novel, When Rain Falls, was released March 2012. This is the first book in the Romantic Suspense driven Victory Gospel Series. The second book in the Victory Gospel Series, When Memories Fade, was released in April 2013. The final book in the series, When Perfection Fails was released March 2014. The series was published via Urban Christian/Kensington.
Hostile Eyewitness, the first book in the Serena Manchester Series was released March 31, 2015. This is a spin-off series from the Victory Gospel Series.
Tyora also writes Cozy Mysteries. Deep Fried Trouble, the first book in the Eugeena Patterson Mystery series was released June 2013. The second book in the series, Oven Baked Secrets, was released January 2015.
As a literary-focused entrepreneur, she has assisted countless authors with developing an online presence via her company, Tywebbin Creations LLC since 1999. Popular services include online publicity, social media management, book trailers and book covers.
In 2012, Tyora started Tymm Publishing LLC. Under her publishing company, she has published the Eugeena Patterson Mystery Series, Stepping Into Victory Anthologies and The Literary Entrepreneur’s Training Series. On the 1st and 3rd Mondays, Tyora hosts The Literary Entrepreneur Podcast.
When Tyora isn’t working for a client or doing something literary, she enjoys spending time with family, catching a movie on the big screen, and traveling. For more information about her literary endeavors, visit her online at TyoraMoody.com.