September Author Spotlight Luke Smitherd

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Luke Smitherd is this month’s spotlight. I came across Luke’s books little over a year ago. I had gotten an email from bookbub.com with my daily deals and there was a book titled THE STONE MAN. A great science fiction book. It starts out with a stone man appearing out of nowhere. It doesn’t move right away, but when it does, it doesn’t stop until it gets where it needs to go. Reporter Andy Pointer is there when the stone man shows up. He is bound and determined to find out where it came from, why is it here, and where is it going. Then the headaches and visions start. Is he somehow connected to the stone man? How far is too far? Andy must discover the answer and find out who he really is, in the shadow of the Stone Man.

This book was a really great read. Suspenseful, heart-stopping, action packed, and it pretty much left me breathless. The ending, you will NOT see coming and it will leave you in shock. Luke knows how to tell a great story!

https://www.amazon.com/Stone-Man-Science-Fiction-Thriller-ebook/dp/B00AHJIJF2/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

THE STONE MAN is available on Amazon for only $2.99.

Another favorite story of Luke’s is IN THE DARKNESS, THAT’S WHERE I’LL KNOW YOU: THE COMPLETE BLACK ROOM STORY. When this first came out, it was in four parts. I devoured these books. It’s the story of Charlie and Minnie. Charlie is a local bartender, and after a night out, he wakes up in a dark place. Before him is a floating screen. Where is he? He is in fact, inside Minnie’s mind. He can see what she sees, hear her, talk to her, and why does he feel he KNOWS her?

This book blew me away! Full of heart and soul, suspense, and nail biting action. By the end, I was left sobbing! I truly loved loved loved this book!

lukesmitherd Only $2.99 on Amazon right now!

https://www.amazon.com/Darkness-Thats-Where-Ill-Know-ebook/dp/B00V9KD02A/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

Luke’s newest release is HOW TO BE A VIGILANTE: A DIARY. This was just released on the 14th. I’m really looking forward to reading this one. I’m sure it will be a great read as all the others have been.

FROM AMAZON…….. It’s 1998. The internet age is still in its infancy. Google has just been founded. Eighteen year old supermarket shelf-stacker Nigel Carmelite has decided that he’s going to become a vigilante.
There are a few problems: how is he going to even find crime to fight on the streets of Derbyshire? How will he create a superhero costume – and an arsenal of crime-fighting weaponry – on a shoestring budget? And will his history of blackouts and crippling social inadequacy affect his chances?
This is Nigel’s account of his journey; part diary, part deluded self-help manual, tragically comic and slowly descending into what is arguably Luke Smitherd’s darkest and most violent novel.
What do you believe in? And more importantly …should you?

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https://www.amazon.com/How-Be-Vigilante-Luke-Smitherd-ebook/dp/B01J3YGF2K/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

This book can also be found on Amazon for $2.99.

You can find a complete list of all of Luke Smitherd’s books on his author page on Amazon.

https://www.amazon.com/Luke-Smitherd/e/B007K1CY8S/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

Great person, great author, and no matter which book you read, it’s gonna be brilliant. Be sure to check him and his books out!!

Luke took time out of his busy schedule to answer a few questions.

You rock Luke, thanks a million!

1. What made you go into writing?

I’ve always loved making up stories, and I’ve always loved jobs where I don’t have to get up and go to work in the morning. More the latter than the former.

2. Did you read a lot growing up?

Yes, I read all the time when I was a kid. To the point where I got a Christmas card from another kid at school when I was about ten-years-old. It was a picture of a baby penguin sitting on a block of ice; the gag being that the penguin was on the toilet, and the kid that gave me the card had actually drawn a book in the penguin’s hands because I read so much.

3. How many books do you currently have available?

I have four novels, a book of collected novellas, two other novellas, and I have two new books coming out this year. My next book, “How to be a Vigilante: A Diary” comes out on September 14 of this year.

4. How do you come up with the ideas for your stories and how do you keep the storylines straight as you write?

I have a list in my phone for when an idea come to me. It’s always like a concept; it’s always like a “what if” idea, “what if this happened”, and I think where’s the story in that, and I sit down and thrash it out and note down stumbling blocks and try to keep it as straight as I can and as water tight in terms of logic.

5. What do you love most about writing?

When I know I’ve written something that’s sent the reader one way—or I try to hint it’s going one way—and then do a complete swerve and surprise them. There’s a particular moment in my novel, “In the Darkness, That’s Where I’ll Know You” where I would have loved to have seen some of the readers’ faces. A. I thought that when I wrote it; and B. Based on the emails I’ve had, it had the effect I thought it would.

6. Is there anything you hate about writing?

Yes. I hate that I can’t write as fast as I think. My shoulders get very, very tense after about half an hour of writing because I’m quite frustrated.

7. Do you have a favorite spot where you write?

No. I’m on the road a lot. I don’t like to write indoors, at home, or where I’m staying because I get cabin fever. Generally, I like to write out and about, any time of day. I actually have a playlist of instrumental music that I listen to while I work—so no lyrics—and I actually have an app that plays a sound that supposedly helps me concentrate. Whether it works or not, I don’t know.

8. If you could change anything about your books, would you?

I already did. I published, “The Stone Man”, which is my biggest book and then last year I trimmed about ten thousand words out of it. I’ve realized I have a tendency to be quite verbose so I’ve gone through one or two of the books and trimmed them a lot and I try to keep an eye on that as I write now.

9. If you could change places with anyone, would you? Who?

Off the top of my head, no, because you never really know what’s going on with somebody.

10. If you could live in any book for a day, what book would it be?

Although I didn’t like the book, I would say, “Ready, Player One” (by Ernest Cline), because I loved the idea of The Oasis.

11. If you hadn’t become an author, what do you think you would be doing?

Pro Wrestling 100%! Or, possibly more realistically, still a musician.

12. Which point of view do you like to write in and why?

There are pros and cons to both. My biggest book is all in the first person, and I like that because I like exploring the character’s thoughts a bit more clearly, and I can do that in the first person. Then again, writing in the third person means you can get on with it a little bit more, I think.

13. What does a typical day of writing look like?

A lot of procrastination, a lot of getting other things done, and then maybe hopefully on a good day, on a really good day maybe getting four hours in, but it tends to be anywhere from one to three, and a lot of other garbage I have to do in between.

14. How do you unwind after a day of writing?

I don’t really unless I’m actively trying to force myself to do more to unwind because unless I’m doing something with other people when I’m at home, I’ll work right until I go to bed. I’m realizing I shouldn’t do that. I’m trying to take more time to read or anything. So, the answer is, right now, that’s a work in progress.

15. If you were given the chance to be one of your characters, would you?

Absolutely not. Most of my characters don’t… I don’t think there are any of my characters I’d like to be. They tend to get a hard time.

16. What would the title of your autobiography be?

My brother and I used to always joke the title of my autobiography would be: “Faded and Fucked: The Luke Smitherd Story”. So let’s go with that.

17. Do you keep anything handy in case an idea comes to you out of the blue?

See earlier answer about my phone!

18. How do you think the classics inspire today’s authors?

While I think today’s authors, the good ones at least, are trying to find new things to do, the classics manipulate the reader’s emotions. I think that’s timeless. No matter how you execute it. I think those things are still important.

19. How do you celebrate when you finish a book?

I don’t really because when I finish the first draft I think that’s when the hard work starts—the redrafting and the messing around. I’m a procrastinating workaholic. Putting celebration time aside is something I need to do more often.

20. Do you use Twitter, a newsletter, a blog, or Facebook?

Yes, I do use Twitter. You can follow me @lukesmitherd. I have irregular updates on my website at lukesmitherd.com. Most frequently updated is the Facebook page at “Luke Smitherd Book Stuff”. Anyone who wants to find out more about my stuff I would recommend signing up on lukesmitherd.com for the “Spam-Free Book Release Newsletter”.

https://www.facebook.com/smitherdbooks/?fref=ts

http://lukesmitherd.com/

21. Any advice for future writers?

It’s a war of attrition. It took me five years before I got to the point where it was a full-time living. You will feel like you’re writing to no one. And all the pieces of advice you get—people say, “Hey, why don’t you do a giveaway to your readers”, and you look at your mailing list and you have twenty people and you think, “How is that going to help?” It’s just a case of plugging away, connecting with your readers, and don’t waste time blogging or trying to find fans through twitter. Use Twitter only as a way of connecting with people that want to connect with you.

Brilliant! Thank you again Luke for letting me spotlight you and your amazing books!!

Happy Reading

~TMB~

July Author Spotlight Rich Hawkins

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Mr. July, Author Spotlight is Rich Hawkins. A brilliant author, a great guy, and even greater friend. It’s such an honor to know him and read his words. He’s witty, fun, and an all around super guy.

Rich can be found on facebook

https://www.facebook.com/rich.hawkins.98?fref=ts

and on Twitter @RichHawkins4

Rich has 3 novels out ( a apocalyptic trilogy )  …  THE LAST PLAGUE, THE LAST OUTPOST and THE LAST SOLDIER. A couple short stories … FALLEN SOLDIER, and FATHOMS.  Two novellas – BLACK STAR, BLACK SUN and THE PLAGUE WINTER. We can’t forget the many many stories in various horror anthologies. No matter which story you pick up, you won’t be disappointed.

I have read FALLEN SOLDIER, and FATHOMS. I read them back to back, and while waiting for my sister to finish her class at college. I couldn’t stop reading them.

FALLEN SOLDIER is about a soldier returning home from the war, things are not how they were. Dad not sure what to do, a son seeing ghosts from his past, and mom, well, is not the same. The son goes out to try and find the person / persons who have destroyed his family. Will he find them? Will the ghosts of his past drive him insane?

This great short story has it all. Monsters, ghosts, darkness, sadness and a bit of gore. Full of emotions, it will get your heart racing and leave your breathless. It’s a hell of a roller coaster ride!!

Hold on tight, you’re gonna love it. I did.

https://www.amazon.com/Fallen-Soldier-Rich-Hawkins-ebook/dp/B01GLTA6RA/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1467611754&sr=1-1&keywords=rich+hawkins

KINDLE price $ 0.99

FATHOMS. A body washes up on the beach, goes missing before the police can arrive. Something strange knocking on the door of the man who saw the body.

What was it? Who was it?

Then more things / people come out of the sea. What is happening? Why is it happening?

A lost love, sadness, a terrified keeper and a powerful storm that awakes the very things that should stay asleep.

This is a very hauntingly beautiful story. The ending caught me by surprise, but still, the perfect ending.

This is one story you don’t want to miss.

https://www.amazon.com/Fathoms-Rich-Hawkins-ebook/dp/B01H9FM5VU/ref=sr_1_9?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1467611754&sr=1-9&keywords=rich+hawkins#navbar

KINDLE price $ 0.99

I have not read this trilogy yet, but they are very near the top of my to be read pile. I am looking forward to reading them. Have heard nothing but great things about them!! You should give them a try too.  In fact, I’m looking forward to reading all of Rich’s work. If they are anything like the two above stories, we are all in for an amazing ride along.

THE LAST PLAGUE is $2.99 for Kindle

https://www.amazon.com/Last-Plague-Rich-Hawkins-ebook/dp/B00MR00JZ2/ref=sr_1_3?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1467611754&sr=1-3&keywords=rich+hawkins

THE LAST OUTPOST is $2.99 for Kindle

https://www.amazon.com/Last-Outpost-Rich-Hawkins-ebook/dp/B013J9QNN6/ref=pd_sim_351_1?ie=UTF8&dpID=51r0pEQvUsL&dpSrc=sims&preST=_UX300_PJku-sticker-v3%2CTopRight%2C0%2C-44_OU01_AC_UL160_SR100%2C160_&psc=1&refRID=VR64W22C70W6N20GSYGM#navbar

THE LAST SOLDIER is $3.49 for Kindle

https://www.amazon.com/Last-Soldier-Rich-Hawkins-ebook/dp/B01B28H5XS/ref=pd_sim_351_1?ie=UTF8&dpID=51IXqk6ANSL&dpSrc=sims&preST=_UX300_PJku-sticker-v3%2CTopRight%2C0%2C-44_OU01_AC_UL160_SR100%2C160_&psc=1&refRID=WFHA52E5XQW58XQ9CB3H#navbar

Be sure to check out his Amazon.com author page for his other books and anthologies.

http://www.amazon.com/Rich-Hawkins/e/B007H91W68/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

Rich took time out of his super busy schedule to answer a few questions for me.

THANK YOU Rich!! You are a rock star!!!

1. When did you know you wanted to write books?

About ten years ago, when I finally made the effort to start working on a novel (which was never published). Hopefully I made the right choice.

2. Did you read a lot growing up? Favorite book?

I loved reading when I was a young child, but I drifted away from it in my teens. Fortunately my love for books returned in my twenties! THE LION, THE WITCH, AND THE WARDROBE was my favourite book when I was a kid.

3. Kindle vs Paperback, which do you reach for when you read?

I prefer paperback, but I inevitably read more books on kindle because they cost less and I’m an impoverished writer…

4. Any new releases soon?

I’ve got three novellas coming out in the next few months – KING CARRION, a vampire story published by the Sinister Horror Company, is due for release in September; RUIN, from Dark Minds Press, is due in October; and I’m going to self-publish a novella called SCAVENGERS, which will hopefully be released sometime between the other two. Hopefully.

5. How many books do you have available?

I have three novels out at the moment – my apocalyptic trilogy of THE LAST PLAGUE, THE LAST OUTPOST, and THE LAST SOLDIER. I have two novellas – BLACK STAR, BLACK SUN and THE PLAGUE WINTER. Plus I’ve got several short stories available in various anthologies.

6, Which POV do you enjoy writing in? Why?

Third person past tense, always.

7. If you could be 1 of your characters, who would you be?

Ralph Barrow from my debut novel THE LAST PLAGUE. He’s a bastard, but he’s a well-meaning bastard.

8. If you could live in any book for a day, which book?

HG Wells’ WAR OF THE WORLDS. That’d be cool. Plus I’m prepping an alien invasion novel at the moment, so it’d be good research.

9. What is the scariest book you have read?

The Road. I’ve read it numerous times, so its effect on me has faded somewhat – but when I first read it, I found it terrifying. Absolutely superb novel.

10. How did you come up with the concept for your books?

They pop into my head then grow a little, and I just take it from there.

11. How do you unwind from a day of writing?

I like to unwind by spending time with my family. I also read when I can, which helps me relax.

12. Do you have a favorite spot you like to write? Favorite time of day? Music or Silence?

I like to write at my desk – that’s my usual spot. I’ll write to either music or silence, depending on my mood. Sometimes I’ll have the television on in the background.

14. What do you love most about writing?

The opportunity to create fictional worlds and characters; to make something from nothing. I just love storytelling.

15. What do you hate most about writing?

The long hours. It’s a bastard.

16. Is there any topic that is off limits to write about?

No topic should be off limits.

17. If you could invite any 5 people over for dinner, who would you invite, and what would you serve for dinner?

Stephen King, Russell Crowe, Ricky Gervais, Gillian Anderson, and Sam Harris. I’d serve Pizza for dinner.

18. If you could switch places with anyone (author or not) for a day, would you and who?

Stephen King, just to see what being rich and mega-successful is like.

19. If you could go back in time and change ONE thing, would you? What would you change?

I wouldn’t change anything. If time travel stories have taught us anything, it’s not to tinker with the timeline. That’s how the apocalypse begins…

20, What is the most terrifying thing you have ever done?

Have a daughter. It’s terrifying, but fantastic.

21. What does the typical day of writing look like?

Once I’ve done my daughter’s breakfast and had my own, I check my Facebook, Twitter and email, then get started on the writing at some point in the morning. Then it’s all about trying to fit the writing in between taking care of my daughter. I get more free time to write at night, and usually work until midnight most nights.

22. If you could change anything about your books, would you?

Maybe a few typos here and there – just little things – but nothing drastic!

23. How do you celebrate when you finish writing a book?

I’ll usually eat pizza to celebrate, if there’s any in the house. If not, I’ll have a Pot Noodle. Exciting stuff, I know. Being a horror writer is very glamorous…
24. Any advice for future authors?

Just keep writing. Write what you want to write and don’t be afraid to experiment with different styles. Also, read as much as you can. Probably best to develop a thick skin, too!

***** Well dear readers, be sure to pick up some Rich Hawkins books!!  Buy them! Read Them! Review them!!!!!

Happy Reading,

Thank you Rich!!  It is an honor and a pleasure having you here on my blog.

~TMB~

 

GODBOMB! by Kit Power

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Kit Power is a Genious! Why did it take me so long to pick this book up and read it?? Goodness me – Thought provoking, suspenseful, like nothing I have read before! There is heart stopping action, death, and murder. You will be in awe, hopeful, and also have your heart broken a time or two.

Imagine being in Church, someone stands up and demands to talk to GOD or he will blow the place up. Would you be able to sit there quietly, or would you try and stop the bomber? The bomber tells everyone to pray, pray that HE shows up. How much do you believe?

Here you will meet some remarkable people …..

The Preacher… can he help the bomber get what he needs?  There is Deborah… what is she willing to do to survive? Chris….. is he willing to risk everyone for what he seeks? Twitch…. just trying to get on the right path. Katie …… your average teenager going to church. Alex… fresh out of school, learning her way. Emma and her husband Peter …. 8 and half months pregnant and so much in love, and Mike …. a church band member, and living in God’s light.

Some of these people might not make it out alive. You will not be able to put this amazing book down until you reach the very last page.

This book WILL get you thinking, get you to wonder what you believe in and question what is GOD’s plan and why are we here. Was this God’s plan all along??

An ending that was mind numbing and yet amazing all at the same time. Kit Power knows how to tell a bloody brilliant story! I for one am looking forward to Kit’s other stories.

Write faster Kit!!!!

GODBOMB! is currently $3.99 for kindle. Great price for a great book

https://www.amazon.com/GodBomb-Kit-Power/dp/0993279392/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1467558675&sr=8-1&keywords=Godbomb

Kit is also on facebook… be sure to look him up and tell him how much you loved his book!

https://www.facebook.com/kit.power.37

AROUND THE WORLD WITH A CAT: A children’s story about the last cat in the world by Jack Preston

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Jack Preston, is the 10 year old son of famed author Ken Preston, and this is Jack’s first book. It’s a fun book, a great children’s book. It’s great for the kid in all of us.

The book follows a boy named Jackson, and Jackson is the proud owner of the last cat in the world. Jackson hears about the last female cat living in France. Jackson packs up (while his family is away and he’s home alone) and grabs his cat for a fast paced adventure. By the time they reach France, they are being chased by people whom want his cat, and don’t want them to find the other cat. Jackson and his cat always seem to be one step behind, and one step ahead of those out to get him.

Many beautiful places are the backdrop for this fun tale. We go from England, to France, to Italy and finally to the United States, New York City to be exact.

Do Jackson and his cat find what they are looking for?? Guess you will just have to read this fun filled adventure to find out. It’s a perfect book to read to the kids as they drift off to sleep and start an adventure of their own.

Great fun. Like father, like son. Jack has a great future in storytelling!! Well Done Lad!

AROUND THE WORLD WITH A CAT is only $ 0.99.

https://www.amazon.com/Around-World-Cat-childrens-world-ebook/dp/B01HAI2VI8/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1467233343&sr=1-1&keywords=Jack+Preston#navbar

 

PAY PHONE by Brandon Ford

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“Bring Bring”

Whatever you do, no matter what, don’t answer the phone! You don’t know who or what is on the other end of the line.

This was my first book by Brandon Ford. Won’t be my last. A brilliant storyteller, who knows how to tell a spookishly delicious story!

Brandon starts out telling us a personal story. Something from his childhood, something that, I think, is a great inspiration for this very story. Answering a ringing payphone as you walk past it. I don’t know if I would, and after reading this, I probably won’t ever.

PAY PHONE is about Jake, a lonely New Yorker. His only friend is the pay phone across the street, whom he watches from his third story apartment window. As he watches people go about their day, he grips his cordless phone, looks out the window, and dials the phone’s number, and waits. He lets the phone ring and ring until someone answers. Then he turns on the charm, and talks them into his trap. You see, Jake has the hunger for blood, and he uses the phone to draw his victims in. Man or woman, old or young, it doesn’t matter to him. All that matters to him, is feeding the need for blood. That is until Chelsea answers. He is instantly smitten with her. Her long curls, her sweet voice, and her innocents. He wants to find her, thinks maybe he could have some kind of future with her.

But something is wrong. Susan doesn’t like her. And what Susan wants, Susan gets. She has set her sights on Chelsea’s blood.

Susan’s back story is chilling. One, you won’t see coming. Her story shocked and saddened me.

Does  Jake get what he wants? Does Susan? What does, if anything, does Chelsea want?

This is such a delicious story. One that I couldn’t put down. This book was heart pounding, edge of your seat suspense, and by the ending….. heartbreaking and rewarding.  Full of murder and mayhem. A truly unique story, brilliant!!

PAY PHONE is currently only $2.99 for kindle. Well worth it!

https://www.amazon.com/Pay-Phone-Revised-Brandon-Ford-ebook/dp/B018BHSRUI/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1467228146&sr=1-1&keywords=brandon+ford#navbar

Be sure to check out Brandon’s other books and check out his facebook page too!

https://www.facebook.com/writerbrandonford

 

RUN TO GROUND by Jasper Bark

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RUN TO GROUND is my second book by the brilliant Jasper Bark, and it does not disappoint. Jasper can tell amazing stories, and can pretty much scare the socks off anyone. Especially me.

RUN TO GROUND is a story about Jim. Jim works in a cemetery, paid with cash so he’s off the grid. He’s running from his past, and his future.

The story starts out with Jim running through the cemetery, and something is underground, and chasing him. And what is growing in a few of the graves?!?! Whatever it is, it terrifies Jim. But it doesn’t terrify the Priest that runs the church on the grounds. Why???

This story is full of regret, a strange creepy fetish, ancient folklore and murder.

Gruesome scenes, heart racing, suspense and a shocking ending you won’t see coming.

Awesome Jasper, another great read, another favorite.

RUN TO GROUND actually is two books in one. The second story HOW THE DARK BLEEDS is about Stephanie. A hospital worker, she sits in the patient’s rooms to keep them company, and keeps an eye on them so they don’t have the opportunity to hurt themselves.

We meet Stephanie as she is in the basement of the hospital. She has a scalpel in her hand, and blood dripping to the floor. She sees flashes of her life in the ever growing pool of blood. Happier times, and not so happy times. We find out about her break up, the loss of her nephew, the fights with her sister…. and Stephanie’s break down.

In the basement, there’s something in the shadows. Something that wants Stephanie’s blood, body and soul.

Who are they? What are they? Do they get what they want?

This story will pull at your heartstrings. It’s moving, and spooky. Heartbreaking and unforgettable.

Jasper Bark at his very best.

RUN TO GROUND is only $3.99 for Kindle. Great price! Two books for the price of one!

https://www.amazon.com/Run-Ground-Jasper-Bark-ebook/dp/B01GT86NMA/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1467221587&sr=8-1&keywords=Jasper+Bark#navbar

Jasper is on facebook ….

https://www.facebook.com/jaspre.bark?fref=ts

ASHLEY’S TALE by Mike Duke

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Mike is a new friend on facebook. A really great guy! Nice, witty, and a hell of an author. This was quite the read! I couldn’t put this book down.

Suspense, heart-pounding, action packed. A kidnapping, choices to be made, murder, and the will to live.

What would you do if all that happened, happened to you?

Ashley found out the hard way, found out her will to live was stronger then she thought. Will she be able to kill to live? Kill to survive? Could you?

If you like books that grab you from page one and doesn’t let go till the very end, this book is for you!

Find out what Ashley does to survive.

https://www.amazon.com/Ashleys-Tale-Mike-Duke-ebook/dp/B017FOE77U/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1467214281&sr=8-1&keywords=mike+duke#navbar

ASHLEY’S TALE is currently $ 0.99 for kindle

Be sure to check out Mike Duke’s other books,

ASHLEY’S TALE: MAKING JAKE & THE AWAKENING (both also $ 0.99 and available for kindle)

You can find Mike Duke on facebook

https://www.facebook.com/mike.duke.author