Monday, May 10, 2021

Marijuana Mermaid - A New Young Adult Novel by Bestselling Author David-Matthew Barnes

New Young Adult Novel by Bestselling Author David-Matthew Barnes




Marijuana Mermaid
David-Matthew Barnes

Genre: YA
Publisher: Cayelle Publishing/Coulture 
Paperback: 248 pages
ISBN-10: 1952404630
ISBN-13: 978-1952404634

After getting into trouble at her high school in Chicago, seventeen-year-old Leah Cassels moves to a small seaside town in California to live with her father. Leah's efforts to leave her past behind are put to the test by new friends Monica and Sabina, two popular girls who seem to have it all. 

While secretly dreaming of becoming the new star of an underwater mermaid show at a local theme park, Leah lands a part-time job at the park's snack bar where she meets Ray Junior. 

As their new friendship begins to grow, Leah comes to the realization that there's more to him than meets the eye. Encouraged by Ray Junior to stand on her own, Leah tries to distance herself from Monica and Sabina, unaware of the consequences for doing so.



#Mermaid #MermaidShow #YA #YoungAdult  #MarijuanaMermaid #DavidMatthewBarnes 









Saturday, May 8, 2021

Now scheduling a one week tour for A Prophecy of Wings by Jane McGarry #YAFantasy #FairyTaleRetelling

Now scheduling a one week tour for A Prophecy of Wings by Jane McGarry

This tour will be June 7- 14(weekdays only)

I am scheduling reviews, guest blogs, interviews and spotlight stops

pdf, epub and mobi available for reviewers 


To participate in this tour please send:


Your blog name and url

A couple suggested dates during the tour

Please let me know if you wish to review

A Prophecy of Wings
Jane McGarry

Genre: YA Fantasy/Retelling
Publisher: JM Books
Date of Publication:  May 18, 2021
ISBN ebook: 978-1-7365884-0-6 
ISBN print: 978-1-7365884-1-3
ASIN: 
Number of pages: 382 
Word Count: 71,000

Cover Artist: Graphics by Mulan Jiang

Tagline: Two Fairies: One Destiny 

Book Description:  

A betrayal, a prophecy, a kingdom in the balance. Sixteen years ago the evil Dahlia overthrew the kingdom of Roshall Grove, the heart of the Fairy World. A prophecy foreseen by Edwina, a powerful enchantress, remains the only hope to topple her iron-fisted rule. Now, Lina, a simple peasant girl, learns her future is linked to this prophecy. Edwina brings Lina to the Fairy World to fulfill her destiny—conquering Queen Dahlia. 

Separated from the enchantress by agents of the dark queen, Lina begins a perilous journey to join the Resistors, who await her return to mount their attack. Thrust into this strange world, Lina must navigate relations with a host of different fairies and animals, never knowing who seeks to help or to thwart her. Finally reunited with the Resistors, Lina must find the strength to lead her people and fulfill the prophecy. Meanwhile, Dahlia prepares for the battle, which will ultimately decide the survival of her reign, while reflecting on the path that brought her and her foe to this moment of reckoning. 

A fairy tale with an ending twist, A Prophecy of Wings is loosely based on Thumbelina by Hans Christian Andersen and examines the ideas of predestined fates and the subsequent, sometimes unforeseen, consequences. 




About the Author: 

Reading was always a big part of Jane’s life. Creating her own stories developed out of this love. To date she has published the Not Every Girl trilogy, a YA Fantasy Adventure. Her latest novel, A Prophecy of Wings, is a retelling of the classic fairy tale, Thumbelina. She lives in New Jersey with my husband, two sons and two extremely spoiled cats. When she is not running around with her family or writing, she can be found curled up with a good book and said cats. 













Friday, May 7, 2021

Now scheduling a two-week tour for Sarana and the Dark King by Ivy Keating #Fantasy

Now scheduling a two-week tour for Sarana and the Dark King by Ivy Keating

This tour will be June 21- July 5 (weekdays only)

I am scheduling reviews, guest blogs, interviews and spotlight stops

pdf and mobi available for reviewers 


To participate in this tour please send:


Your blog name and url

A couple suggested dates during the tour

Please let me know if you wish to review

Sarana and the Dark King
Ivy Keating

Genre: Fantasy
Publisher: Champagne Book Group
Date of Publication: March 22, 2021
ASIN:  B08Y81T7C4
Number of pages:  268
Word Count: 82,700
Cover Artist:  Sevannah Storm

Tagline:  The time for hiding is over.     

Book Description: 

The fearsome Dark King of Bounten, with a magical creature known as a Valomere by his side, is on a quest to find the rare metal tarilium. His brutal ways incite the powerful psychic Allani. But when news of his plans to invade the kingdom of Attaveer spread, a new opponent emerges---Sarana, the daughter of a farmer…or is she?

At birth Sarana was sentenced to death for her "cursed" white hair. The delivery nurse, Meriden, whisked the fair-haired babe to a loving home across the waters from Bounten. Her entire life she hid her appearance to avoid prejudice. Things changed when she discovered she too had a Valomere. She strived to learn the creature's magic and master fighting skills with the hope of becoming a warrior. Her dreams came true when she was allowed to join the Attaveerian king's network of spies--a group poised to help defend the kingdom from an invasion by the Dark King and his powerful army.

When word of the white-haired messenger reached the Dark King he vowed to stop at nothing to capture or kill his opponent.

The time for hiding is over.

Can Sarana save herself and her kingdom? Follow Sarana from death to destiny as she joins forces with psychics, Valomeres, and the power of inner strength, to defeat an evil king.

Amazon      Apple Books      BN      Kobo




About the Author:

Motivated by nature’s mysteries and the complexity of human behavior, Ivy Keating writes science fiction and fantasy novels that explore the relationship between mankind and the natural world. A master’s degree in social work helps her understand the nature of her characters as they struggle with the repercussions of their actions.

Her first novel, Camouflage, was inspired by the landscape and natural beauty of New England. Sarana and the Dark King, was imagined from a mental picture of the Great Lakes. The proximity of these bodies of water and the land that surrounds them conjured the images of separate kingdoms—at least they did in her mind. Ivy believes that her challenge as a writer is to take a setting that intrigues her and create a plot that is both clever and surprising.

Website- https://storiestonovels.com/

Blog- https://storiestonovels.com/blog

Twitter- https://twitter.com/ivy_keating

Facebook  https://www.facebook.com/IvyKeating/

Goodreads  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18471951.Ivy_Keating

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/ivykeating/




Now scheduling a one month tour for The Quantum of the Past: Redux! by Louis Corsair #UF #UrbanFantasy #DarkFantasy


Now scheduling a one month tour for The Quantum of the Past: Redux! by Louis Corsair

This tour will be June 28- July 26 (weekdays only)

I am scheduling reviews, guest blogs, interviews and spotlight stops

pdf, epub and mobi available for reviewers via Smashwords


To participate in this tour please send:


Your blog name and url

A couple suggested dates during the tour

Please let me know if you wish to review

The Quantum of the Past: Redux!
An Elohim Trilogy Novel
Louis Corsair

Genre: Urban Fantasy / Dark Fantasy 
Date of Publication: December 2020
ISBN: B08J5BGHV4
ASIN: B00IQX0WXI
Number of pages: 633
Word Count: 166,000 words
Cover Artist: Ravven Kitsune

Tagline: A mentally unstable army war veteran, Miles Trevor, seeks to redeem himself by helping a Sprite return to her magical home world and fulfill her destiny. 

Book Description:

The Past that haunts Miles Trevor is relentless, with even its most fundamental fragment... 

Iraq war veteran, Miles Trevor, has survivor's guilt after living through an insurgent attack that killed the rest of his platoon, but left him unharmed. Now, he wants nothing more than to return to the military and be a part of the mission once again. Yet, his mind is crumbling; he sometimes hallucinates, seeing the soldiers who died that day. With madness looming in the shadows, the army will never grant him his wish. 

So, when the supernatural--in the form of a teen Sprite named Kendra--offers him a chance for redemption, he takes it. All the girl wants is to go home to a magical city called Lusphera to fulfill her holy destiny, and find out why her father wants to stop her. 

But with Miles losing his grip on sanity, he may not be the best man for this task. In fact, he may be her biggest threat...


Amazon     BN     Smashwords


About the Author:

Louis Corsair is an eight-year veteran of the United States Army. Currently living in Los Angeles, California, he spends his time reading books, going on walks, writing, and enjoying the occasional visit to the beach—while trying to earn an honest buck. As a Los Angeles writer, he feels the weight of famous Los Angeles novelists, like Raymond Chandler, John Fante, Nina Revoyr, among others.

In 2021, he hopes to finish the Elohim Trilogy and its connected novels, including The Wizards Collide, and Apotheosis: Book Three of the Elohim Trilogy.

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5804069.Louis_Corsair

http://louiscorsair.blogspot.com





Wednesday, May 5, 2021

Now scheduling a one month tour for Guns and Smoke by Lauren Sevier and A. Smith #Dystopian #WesternRomance


Now scheduling a one month tour for Guns and Smoke by Lauren Sevier and A. Smith

This tour will be June 10- July 8 (weekdays only)

Every tour host will be entered to win a $20 Amazon or BN Gift Card

I am scheduling reviews, guest blogs, interviews and spotlight stops

pdf, epub and mobi available for reviewers 


To participate in this tour please send:


Your blog name and url

A couple suggested dates during the tour

Please let me know if you wish to review

Guns and Smoke
The Fool’s Adventure Series 
Book One
Lauren Sevier and A. Smith

Genre: Dystopian/Western Romance
Publisher: Lauren Sevier
Date of Publication: July 10, 2021
ISBN: 978-1734402346
ASIN: B08RW6JNGG
Number of pages: 364
Word Count: 134,000
Cover Artist: Stefanie Saw 

Tagline: Life should be about more than just surviving. 

Book Description: 

In a world where safety is a luxury and honor is found only among outlaws, two people attempt to outrun dangers lurking around each corner and the tragedies that define them.

Bonnie is an outlaw on the run. Beautiful but dangerous; her dark past stalks her like the crater beasts that roam the desert. As the notoriously cruel outlaw Jones sends his henchmen to track her down and retrieve the gun she stole from him, Bonnie hopes she can stay one step ahead. Because if he catches her, a fate worse than death awaits.

Jesse always dreamed of leaving the farm to explore the ruins of the big cities he'd heard about his whole life. He just never imagined he'd be forced to flee after strange men burned down his rural mountain town and murdered everyone he loved. Responsible for his kid brother and searching for an uncle he's never met before, he isn't sure he can navigate the perils of life among con artists and thieves long enough to find him.

Their two paths collide as they find themselves thrown together on the adventure of a lifetime.

Together, they may just discover that life is about more than just surviving.

Book Trailer: https://youtu.be/kC821NrfFGs 

Amazon      BN        More Links on Author Site



About the Authors:

Lauren Sevier and A. Smith are longtime friends and co-authors from southern Louisiana. Guns and Smoke, their first joint publication, began as a “short” story after having too much wine on girl’s night.

Nine years later it is now the first novel in a Dystopian/Western Romance series.

The duo has plans to publish several series together in the future. A. Smith spends her time with her two rescue dogs and rescue cat surrounding herself with books and Labyrinth paraphernalia.

Lauren Sevier collects antique tea cups and tries to stay sane, though as the mother of a toddler she fails brilliantly most days. She also has a growing collection of crowns and tiaras and likes to act silly on TikTok. Look for more thrilling novels from The Fools Adventure series in the future!

https://www.laurensevier.com/

https://www.twitter.com/laurensevier

https://www.instagram.com/laurensevier

https://www.youtube.com/c/laurensevier

https://www.facebook.com/authorlaurensevier

https://www.tiktok.com/@lsevier

https://www.laurensevier.com/newsletter

 

http://abbielynnsmith.com/

https://twitter.com/abbiewritesx

https://www.instagram.com/abbiewritesx/

https://t.co/30D6MREJxk?amp=1

https://abbielynnsmith.com/newsletter/

 


Now scheduling a one month tour for Mary, Everything by Cassandra Yorke #HisFic #LitFic #LGBTQ+

Now scheduling a one month tour for Mary, Everything by Cassandra Yorke

This tour will be June 7- July 5 (weekdays only)

I am scheduling reviews, guest blogs, interviews and spotlight stops

pdf available for reviewers 


To participate in this tour please send:


Your blog name and url

A couple suggested dates during the tour

Please let me know if you wish to review

Mary, Everything
The Flapper Covenant Series 
Book One
Cassandra Yorke

Genre: Historical Fiction, Literary Fiction, LGBTQ+
Time Travel, Time Travel Romance
Date of Publication: March 30, 2020 
ISBN: 9780578680361
ASIN: B086HYTB3Q
Number of pages: 414
Word Count: 108,498
Cover Artist: Cassandra Yorke

Tagline: A gripping tale of best friends and romance, sorcery and survival, at the dawn of the Roaring 20s.

Author Commentary: This novel is a memoir wrapped in fiction. While it's a tale of time travel and sorcery, at its core are real events and real themes - haunted yearbooks in college archives, yearning for times long gone, battery and abuse, exile and homecoming. 

While I hope you enjoy it, I promise you will never read another story like it. It's from the heart, it's gritty and lurid - and below the action, it's real.

Book Description:

A young woman born in the wrong reality.

A destiny that will lead her into the past.

And a love so enduring it reaches across time - and existence itself - to bring her home.

Courtney is a lonely undergrad at secluded Braddock College in 2004, working a drowsy summer job in the Archives. Assigned to a new project, she becomes haunted by a college yearbook from the 1920s - filled with familiar faces and memories of times she never experienced. A chance encounter with a mysterious girl named Sadie - dressed in long-outdated clothes - alters her reality. But if you were never meant to be born, that reality can expel you like an infection - or kill you outright. While Courtney struggles against forces she cannot comprehend, a psychopathic stalker smells blood and closes in for the kill.

Sadie, now in 1921, races against the clock to save her friend, joined by some remarkable allies - an American combat sorceress and veteran of World War I, an enigmatic professor who specializes in piercing the veil between realities, and two young women who insist they’re Courtney’s oldest friends - one of them even claiming to be her truest love.

Time is running out for Courtney, and a terrifying wilderness - haunted by the dead from centuries past - may hold the key to her salvation. But none who enter have ever returned…

Cassandra Yorke's groundbreaking debut brings Magical Realism home to the Midwest in an explosive new style, blending midwestern gothic and historical fiction with a warm lesbian love story to create a riveting, deeply immersive epic you won't be able to put down. It's the world of Boardwalk Empire and Gatsby, with an urgent, immersive narrative about what it means to belong, what it means to be hated, what it means to be loved, and ultimately what it means to come home.



About the Author:

Cassandra's life was changed forever when she was taken captive by a haunted college yearbook as an Ohio University senior in the summer of 2004. Ten years later, she started work on Mary, Everything to make sense of the experience. Bathed in summer sunlight and crafted from early 2000s punk rock, Cassandra's goal is more than just telling a story - she wants to take you captive, too.

She lives in central Ohio with her wife, house rabbits, and video games.

And of course, her own ghostly memories.







Monday, May 3, 2021

Now On Tour Hunting The Beast by W. T. Watson #UrbanFantasy



May 3 Paranormalists (Guest Blog)
May 3 Serena Synn (Interview)

May 4 Supernatural Central (Interview)

May 4 Roxanne’s Realm 
May 4 Dark Whimsical Art

May 5 The Creatively Green Write at Home Mom (Guest Blog)

May 5 Books+Coffee=Happiness (Review)

May 5 The Book Junkie Reads
May 6 Momma Says: To Read or Not to Read

May 6 Jazzy Book Reviews
May 6 Sapphyria's Books

May 7 Fang-tastic Books 

May 7 I Smell Sheep (Guest Blog)

May 7 Lisa’s World of Books
May 10 JB's Bookworms with Brandy Mulder (Interview)

May 10 Bewitching Book Tours

May 10 Westveil Publishing 

Hunting The Beast
W. T. Watson

Genre: Urban Fantasy 
Publisher: Beyond The Fray Publishing
Date of Publication: March 5. 2021
ISBN: 978-1-954528-02-4
ASIN: B08Y76T3QF
Number of pages: 220
Word Count: 64,934
Cover Artist:  L Douglas Hogan

Tagline:  Werewolves, cryptid creatures and a protagonist straight out of the pages of lore! 

Book Description:

An ancient evil stalks the Adirondacks…

A ghost hunter is faced with events she has never seen before…

A private investigator is not at all what he seems…

When Zachary Collins agrees to help the head of Buffalo Paranormal Investigations with a hostile haunting, he has no idea he will be immersing himself in the hunt for an ancient monster or that the monster may be hunting him.

Zach will need all of his skill, both magical and mundane, to keep his client alive and to survive Hunting the Beast. 



About the Author:

W. T. Watson is a coffee addict and writer of both fiction and non-fiction.  He infuses his work with his expertise in cryptozoology, monster lore, magic, Forteana and the paranormal. W.T. brings a unique shamanic and magical perspective to all of his work after over 30 years of exploration in these topics. When he is not writing or reading about monsters, he can be found outdoors allowing his dogs to take him for a walk around his neighbourhood in Kitchener, Ontario.  He lives with his spouse, Stacey, in a townhome that would be jammed with books if it weren’t for e-readers.  







Now On Tour Kicking and Screaming by McCarty Griffin #Paranormal #GhostHunting


May 3 Jazzy Book Reviews
May 3 Supernatural Central
May Sadie’s Spotlight

May 4 Lisa’s World of Books

May 4 Sapphyria's Books

May 5 JB's Bookworms with Brandy Mulder 

May 5 Fang-tastic Books 

May 6 Paranormalists

May 6 Westveil Publishing 

May 7 Serena Synn 

May 7 Roxanne’s Realm 
May 10 The Creatively Green Write at Home Mom 

May 10 Momma Says: To Read or Not to Read
May 10 The Book Junkie Reads


Kicking and Screaming
McCarty Griffin

Genre: Paranormal
Date of Publication: January 20, 2021
ISBN: 978-1-3012-1460-0
ASIN: B00FOD6QLK
Number of pages: 322
Word Count: 98, 373
Cover Artist: Joleene Naylor

Book Description: 

Lacey DeLaney is dragged kicking and screaming into battling evil spirits and portals to other dimensions when she makes an impulsive bet with her best friends, Tish MacFarlane and Penny Elliot. 

Together they face off against the nether world and each other on a wild adventure no reality show could ever have prepared them for. 

Join this unlikely trio of ghost hunters, along with congenial empath Mary McDonald, on their wild ride through demonic mayhem and ghostly madness, where only the deep bonds of friendship they share can bring them safely through to this adventure’s shocking end.




About the Author:

McCarty Griffin lives in the Pacific Northwest, at the foot of the Cascades, with her husband, two children and several nonhuman family members. She is a transplanted hillbilly, born in Texas, but raised in the hollows and hills of West Virginia where most of her works are set. She does not limit her creative efforts to any particular genre, although she does have a special love for horror and the paranormal she traces back to a childhood of Saturday nights eating Chef Boyardee pizza and watching Chiller Theatre with her mother. Before settling in to raise her daughter and son, she served in the United States Army, went home to earn her undergraduate and law degrees, and then practiced criminal defense law for more than ten years. One day she finally sat down and started writing, and she hasn’t stopped since.



Now On Tour Ambrosia by David-Matthew Barnes with Exclusive Excerpt #Romance #ChickLit


May 3 The Creatively Green Write at Home Mom (Guest Blog)

May 3 Roxanne’s Realm 

May 4 Jazzy Book Reviews
May 5 Sapphyria's Books

May 6 JB's Bookworms with Brandy Mulder (Interview)
May 7 Bewitching Book Tours

May 10 Andie’s Book Reviews (Review)

May 11 Westveil Publishing 

May 12 Serena Synn (Interview)

May 13 Momma Says: To Read or Not to Read

May 14 Candrel’s Crafts Cooks and Characters (Interview)

May 17 The Book Junkie Reads
May 17 Lisa’s World of Books


Ambrosia 
David-Matthew Barnes

Genre: Contemporary Romance/Chick Lit
Publisher: Blue Dasher Press 
Date of Publication: April 7, 2021 
ISBN: 9798732649086
ASIN: B091WFG8B8
Number of pages: 217
Word Count: 56,400
Cover Artist: Kingwood Creations

Book Description: 

On the night of her 30th birthday, Tina Duncan is dumped by her musician boyfriend and left with nothing. When her best friend dares her to accept every date she’s asked out on for the next year, Tina accepts the challenge only to confirm her theory that the perfect man no longer exists. 

Tina’s life soon becomes one terrible date after another until she accidentally meets Oliver, a beautiful stranger who arrives at her front door to return her purse he’s found in a cab. Before realizing Oliver might be the man to prove her theory wrong – and is indeed the perfect man for her – he slips away and disappears. 

Convinced she’s lost her one shot at true love, Tina embarks on a city-wide search for a man she hardly knows but is quickly falling in love with.


An Exclusive Excerpt from Ambrosia by David-Matthew Barnes

I heard my mother before I saw her. It was as if she sensed me coming up the stairs. My foot was in mid-step and my hand was reaching for the old cracked banister when her voice rang out like a warning bell. "Christina?! My God, I thought you were dead."

I reached the top of the third flight of stairs. Mary Desdemona Duncan stood in the middle of the dimly lit hallway. The door to my apartment was open and from it floated out the scent of pine cleanser.

The hallway was long, narrow, and somewhat eerie. Bare light bulbs hung from above, every few feet. They cracked and hissed as if staying alive were a chore. The carpet was the color of rotten apricots. It was worn away in patches, revealing old slats of wood.

There were six apartments per floor. On the third floor, mine was the first one on the left.

My mother stood in front of me with a look of frightened concern on her round face. She was obsessed with the soap opera The Young and the Restless, particularly with the actress Melody Thomas Scott, who played matriarch Nikki Newman. She even wrote letters to the poor woman and sent her Christmas and birthday gifts. She’d done so for three decades. I suspected my mother thought she was a character on the show herself. Everything that she did and said was done so with a sense of melodrama and was often related to a current plot line on the show.

"Where have you been?" she interrogated in a half whisper with a hand placed over her heart.

My mother should have been born a drag queen. Her hair was thick, shoulder length, and dyed jet black. She wore a purple glittery scarf in it that matched her new nail polish and lipstick. As usual, my mother was layered in gold jewelry: big hoop earrings, necklace, bracelet, and an anklet beneath her dark nylons. She was dressed for work in a white tuxedo shirt and black skirt. For the last eight years, my mother had worked on a casino showboat in Joliet as a blackjack dealer. The money was great and the gamblers loved her, especially the old men who showered her with tips, trinkets, and torrid proposals.

"Christina," she breathed, tears filling her eyes on cue, "why didn't you tell me?"

I looked past my mother, into my apartment. From the crystal clear gleam of the window in the living room and the shine in the hardwood floors, I suspected my mother had been there for hours cleaning. She reached for my hands. A single tear slid down her cheek. "I had no idea he left you, baby. If I would have known…”

I was surprised how affected I was by my mother's concern. I felt my own eyes swell with tears. "I lost my purse," I choked.

"Oh, honey." My mother, who was a few inches shorter than me and twice as round, took me into her arms. One of her hoop earrings smashed against my cheek. She hugged me tightly, rubbing her right palm across the middle of my back.

"He left me with nothing, Ma."

"I know, baby."

"He left me for another woman."

"God in heaven. We have to be strong, Christina."

I continued to play out the scene with her, relishing my heartbroken state. "I'm all alone." The tears spilled from my eyes and fell onto her shoulder.

She pulled away from me and placed a hand on my cheek. "Don't worry," she comforted me. "I'm here now. Let me fix it."

I nodded, feeling as if I were six years old again and recovering from a bad scrape on the playground. But no Band-Aid was big enough to heal the wounds Shawn left behind. "I don't even have a cell phone."

"I know. Why do you think I'm here? I've been calling you for three days. Finally, I called Miss Malukey and she said you were out of your mind with grief because of what that rotten boy did to you.” My mother shifted her position, as if she were turning toward an imaginary camera filming a scene between us. “Christina, are you selling shoes at McGrady's? Honey, your father and I would have—”

"Mom, I'm thirty now. I have to learn to take care of myself."

"Yes, dear, and I'm almost sixty and I'm still not opposed to using your father's credit card for life's emergencies."

"I have to take a shower. I have to get to work."

"Have you eaten?"

"Not since yesterday at lunch."

"I brought bagels. Get in the shower. I can stay all day. I came here right after work."

"You're working graveyard now?"

"I did it so I could have tomorrow off."

"Tomorrow?"

"Tomorrow is Christmas, honey."

"Oh my God. I forgot."

My mother led me inside the apartment, ushering me with her hand between my shoulder blades. I noticed there was a new plant, some type of fern in a wicker basket, in the corner of the living room near the kitchen area.

I looked around the apartment, saddened by the sparseness of it all. The only piece of furniture was the sofa. To my right, the kitchen sat quiet, looking unused and unlived in. To my left, the bathroom and the empty bedroom. I stared directly in front of me, out the window to an "L" train passing by, filled with early morning commuters. The Chicago skyline loomed in the distance, buried in snow.

"I ordered some furniture, Ma. It’ll be here at noon today."

"What about groceries? What about paying your bills?"

"Darla lent me some money. The rest of it was in my purse."

"Where's your purse?"

"In the back of a cab somewhere in Chicago."

"I'm calling your father. He'll bring me a change of clothes and some cash. Honey, you can't live like this."

"I don't have a choice." I unbuttoned my coat and slipped off the Santa hat.

"Yes, you do. You can come home.”

"Ma, I'm not going back to Joliet. Besides, I have a job."

"Christina, I can get you a job at the casino. They're always looking for cocktail waitresses."

"No one would buy a drink from me."

"Why wouldn't they?"

I moved across the apartment, my right hip grazing against the edge of the ugly sofa. "Because I'm not Kim Kardashian."

I went into the bathroom and shut the door.


About the Author:

David-Matthew Barnes is an award-winning author, playwright, poet, and screenwriter. He writes in multiple genres, primarily young adult, romance, thriller, and horror. He is the bestselling author of twelve novels, five produced screenplays, three collections of poetry, seven short stories, and more than sixty stage plays. He graduated with honors from Oglethorpe University in Atlanta with a Bachelor of Arts in Communications and English. He earned a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing at Queens University of Charlotte in North Carolina. He attended the Professional Program in Screenwriting at UCLA. David-Matthew divides his time between Denver and Los Angeles. He is represented by Hoop Earrings Entertainment.




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