Doing What Leo Does Best…

Here’s a sneak peek into The Lion’s first chapter. Releasing April 25th!

Preorder on Amazon!


The heaviness continued to drop onto his chest as Leo drove further and further away from Levi. Further away from Belle. It always happened every time he distanced himself from her or the farm. The only way he could reason it was that it must have had something to do with all that praying she did.
Ever since that night when she first dispelled the darkness with one small, impromptu prayer, Leo began to see the pattern. On those days she prayed, the darkness stayed away. His nights weren’t tormented by dreams of fire and death. His soul didn’t feel as weighted and burdened. So, each morning, he asked if she prayed and if she said she hadn’t yet, he would slyly drop a hint that she should. Of course, she didn’t complain. Why should she? It was nothing to her. Just a string of words sent up to God to protect them and the farm from evil.
But to Leo, it was everything.
It meant the difference between walking around with an easy smile, because he had finally settled where he wanted to stay, or looking over his shoulder and starting at every loud noise, thinking it might be the demon coming to collect his payment.
It took a great deal of courage to mount his motorcycle and head south toward Little Rock, far away from Belle’s protection and deeper into the world he had tried to leave behind. It was all for her, though. If he didn’t do this, it’d take that much longer for Belle to achieve her dreams.
One call to an old acquaintance – the only one he had left that would still speak to him – sealed his plans for the evening and with a little money in his pocket and a change of clothes in his duffle bag, he left in the late afternoon.
The two-and-a-half-hour drive did little to settle his nerves or clear his head. He used to love riding on the highway. Of all the vehicles he had ever driven, the maneuverability of a motorcycle appealed to him the most. He could weave in and out of traffic, zoom on and off exits and effectively lose whoever might happen to be chasing him. On those drives when he could relax, let the wind pound his face and feel the grind of the wheels on the blacktop, Leo could zone out and not think so much. He didn’t have to think about his past or his future. Just this moment with only him, the road, and the deafening rumble of the engine beneath him.
He could do anything but relax now, because he knew exactly where he was going and what he’d be doing that night. Something he thought he’d never have to do again after he arrived in Levi.
It didn’t take long to find the place. Mack gave detailed directions that a toddler could follow. Even over the roar of his bike, he could hear the multitude of voices and music booming out of the warehouse just outside of town. The parking lot was packed, but he managed to find a cramped spot on the side closest to the river.
Leo didn’t make eye contact with the people he passed as he made his way toward the entrance. Smokers, groups of men with beer bottles in hand, couples displaying their affection in obscene ways, bookies, dealers, and thugs. It wasn’t so long ago that he knew this scene by heart. Being in Levi had cleansed him somehow and as he approached the bouncers at the door, he began to question himself again. The darkness practically lived here, and in places like it where sin went unchecked. He could feel its pull, like a black hole that Leo had once dangerously skirted the edges of not so long ago. And here he was again. Continue reading

Advertisements
Posted in Book Updates, Creative Blurbs, Indie Releases, Sneak Peek, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

God Himself Could Not Sink These Beasts

The Unsinkable Live on Amazon!

UnsinkableFinalFX_1500x1000April, 1912

After nine long years of training as a freshly turned werewolf, and five more years of searching Europe, Logan Elster has finally come face-to-face with the man from whom he inherited his supernatural gifts. But, he is just as surprised as his mentor, Darren Dubose to find a very altered version of Dustin Keith. After learning of some unfinished business the Irish werewolf had left behind in America, both Logan and Darren know they have to take the werewolf beta back across the ocean with them. The safety of a future pack mate depends on it.
Express tickets are booked for each of them aboard the newest steamer, the queen of the Atlantic, the Titanic. The marvel of the age, the biggest moving vessel crafted by the hands of man, it is everything they expect it to be and more. Even when they hold third class tickets, the accommodations are incredible. But more trouble awaits on the spacious decks and each werewolf is confronted with harsh truths about themselves, their relations to one another, and their future together. It doesn’t help that three ladies have set their eyes on the newly formed pack. They believe these complications couldn’t get much worse until the night of April 14th, when they’ll have to worry about more than just keeping their preternatural identities a secret from the other passengers.

Story Behind the Story

I’ve wanted to write a Titanic story for years, ever since I first became fascinated by the disaster. I remember the first clips I watched by accident that made me hesitant to even touch the subject. I was five years old and my mom had bought the newly released movie by James Cameron. I remember the duo-VHS case clear as day. I’m sure she still has it. I came into the living room for something and watched the sinking scene. The screaming people, the dramatic music, all of it terrified me. When I was thirteen and going to take a cruise with my mom to the Bahamas, I remembered those scenes and didn’t want to leave shore. I wanted nothing to do with big ships like that.
Then, when I was fifteen, I watched the movie again. This time, from start to finish. I was entranced. From there, I bought books and studied the deck plans. I used some allowance money to buy the anniversary edition of the Titanic movie on DVD, complete with all the bonus features I could ever want.
Over the years, I watched documentaries when I came across them, but I never dived headlong into studying the disaster until now.
My writing can never do justice to the ship. Nor could it impart the true magnitude of the disaster. I wish I could, but Titanic is more majestic than words could ever describe. Her luxurious accommodations, the size and grandeur of her structure, and the pure terror that gripped the passengers who were left onboard after the last of the lifeboats were gone.
I’m confident that I could walk the whole ship in my sleep, but what’s more disturbing than this was the extent that I could place myself in the passengers’ shoes during the sinking. Each time I read a testimony that told how they didn’t think the ship would sink and gave some evidence to that belief, I found myself transported. I began to think the same. I thought to myself, “No, she can’t sink. Look at all these modern advances! They even said she stopped sinking for a bit. Maybe she’ll make it. She was designed to be her own lifeboat. Maybe she will be. Maybe that ship will come to their rescue. Maybe the damage wasn’t that bad.” All along, I knew how the story would end, but I actually perceived this false hope that so many clung to in those final moments. It was a strange illusion to fall under. Even more heartbreaking when the illusion was finally broken.
I encourage you, if you have any inclination into learning more, seek out books and documentaries about the famous ship. Read the survivor testimonies, learn the names of the victims. Visit one of the museums in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee or Branson, Missouri. There’s plenty of artifact exhibits that travel the country, and countless more places abroad that pay tribute to the ocean liner. It’s so much more than a ship, an iceberg, and lack of lifeboats. The disaster represents a focal point in history. Class distinction, immigration, and innovation. There are plenty of myths around the disaster, and I hope you learn to distinguish what is true from what is Hollywood hype.

 

Posted in Book Updates, General Blogs, Indie Releases, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Redemption Duet Trailer

Y’all know I love making book trailers, and this one was so fun to make. Check out the release of The Redemption Duet on Amazon!

Posted in General Blogs, Indie Releases | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

They Have To Battle Each Other’s Demons

The Rose is officially live, but that’s not the end of the line for Belle and Leo! The second in this Redemption Duo will go live on April 25th! Now that Belle and Leo have tackled what they think is the worst of their troubles, find out how they concur the root of all their evils together!

Preorder on Amazon!

The_LionBelle Clearwater’s prayers had been answered, but there was still so much left to discover. Now determined to reject her mental illness, she’s decided to be brave and not let her anxiety disorder take her away from what matters. With the help of her friends and her faith, she’s sure that she can finally have her life back. Something greater is stirring in her heart and the man that had served as her solid ground might just send her world off kilter again. All it takes is one moment of honesty.

Against every bit of common sense, Leo Thompsons has chosen to stay in Levi. The Darkness and his murderous brother are closing in, but he believed that as long as he has Belle, he can find a way to break the curse upon his soul. With the power of love and prayer, he’s finally fighting for his life and the chance to share that life with the beautiful farm girl. Fate brought them together, but is he strong enough to rebel against the forces of evil that have hounded him for so long? Can he, once and for all, defeat his demons?

Posted in Book Updates, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Rose is Live!

It’s here! Have you got your copy of The Rose yet? If you love sweet, heartfelt romances with a twist of faith and suspense, you’ll love this!

Get It Here On Amazon

The-Rose-KindleBelle lives her life from day to day, nearly crippled by her social anxiety. But if you ask anyone in Levi about it, they’d say she’s a sweet, quiet girl who works hard to keep up her family’s small ranch while holding down a job at the bookstore. No one knows that beneath her smiles lay a shy introvert who wants nothing more than to stay at home. It was easier to stay alone, stay isolated. That’s when she was the happiest. But during one thunderstorm, all of that changed and she met the first man she ever actually wanted to spend time with.
Leo made a habit of avoiding people when at all possible. Getting tied down, making friends, having a life only meant suffering. The darkness that followed him since his adolescent years never left, not really. It’d show up and ruin any hint of happiness that came his way. Running from his past and the brother that cursed him with this demon, Leo never expected to find something like home in the little country town of Levi. And he didn’t expect one storm to bring him to the barn of a girl with fire in her eyes and a face as beautiful as a sunrise. A sunrise that could chase away all the shadows.

Posted in Book Updates, Indie Releases, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Interview with C.K Brooke

An author of paranormal and urban fantasy fiction, Sheritta Bitikofer lives for the deep, engaging stories that enthrall readers from cover to cover. As a wife and fur-mama of eclectic tastes, she can be found roaming Civil War battlefields, perusing the romance section of the bookstore, or relaxing with a plate of chili cheese fries. Sheritta, welcome!

Can you tell us about The Rose?

The Rose is the first book in a duet that tells how Belle Clearwater, a woman who hides a massive amount of social anxiety while trying to run her small farm, meets Leo Thompson, a guy that’s haunted by demons and depression and constantly running from a tragic family history. Together, they help one another realize that they’re better than the things that torture them on a daily basis, and they begin to fall in love in the process. It’s full of insightful, reflective topics like faith and mental illness, all packed into an engaging and sometimes heartwrenching story.

It sounds fascinating yet heavy! Where did the idea to write it come from?

It’s actually the first book I wrote almost twelve years ago. At the time, it was really rough and unnecessarily long and awkward in its plot and character development. I put it down for a long time and then decided that I needed some sort of closure to that cast of characters, so I picked it back up and refined it quite a bit. I added the mental illness elements, toned down a lot of the faith/religious aspects, and quickened the plot progression so it wasn’t plodding along like it had been in the first draft. The main goal of the book, or what I intended to do when I set out to write it, was to make people aware that there’s a whole other world underneath what we see. Not just spiritually, but each person we come into contact with may have something they’re struggling with. Whether that’s depression, anxiety, self-doubt, or whatever, we’re all battling something that we don’t talk about. My hope with The Rose is to get people talking about those issues, which can open the path to healing. There’s a bit movement toward exposing mental illnesses and shattering long-held stigmas about what they are or are not, so I’m just playing my part while using characters that are near and dear to my heart.

I think it’s wonderful that you’ve poured so much depth and heart into this novel, while bringing awareness to a very important condition. Were there any other works that influenced the writing of this book? Would fans of those works be fans of yours? Continue reading

Posted in Book Updates, Indie Releases, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Celebrate The Full Moon With A Legacy!

It’s LIVE! Head on over to your favorite Ebook retailer to get a copy of The Deviants!

Get It On Amazon

Get It Everywhere Else

The-Deviants-fullAmerica – 1897
For Logan Elster, life was hard enough. With a gambling drunkard of a father and a mother who had to lie about her bruises, there’s only so much a sixteen year old can do. But when he comes home to witness another beating, he flies into a rage and discovers something about his ancestry that he never knew before. He has inherited a frightening gift from his grandfather and has become a werewolf, inadvertently destroying everything he holds dear. In search of the only man who can help him, Logan finds more than just a mentor in the small town of Devia, Alabama. He finds a community of men just like him. A community of werewolves.
But the community is in far more danger than their leader, Robert Croxen, will ever admit to. An industrial revolution is sweeping the nation and the railroad has come to lower Alabama. Devia is in the perfect place, but Robert won’t sell a single acre, no matter the price. Desperation drives the owner of the railroad to investigate what Robert’s hiding and what his spies find is something out of the old world fairytales. Question is, what will he do about it?

Posted in Book Updates, Indie Releases, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Farm Girl and a Bad Boy

Just another week before the amazing release of The Rose, the first book in the Redemption Duet! Do you have your copy preordered?

Do It Now!

Belle lives her life from day to day, nearly crippled by her social anxiety. But if you ask anyone in Levi about it, they’d say she’s a sweet, quiet girl who works hard to keep up her family’s small ranch while holding down a job at the bookstore. No one knows that beneath her smiles lay a shy introvert who wants nothing more than to stay at home. It was easier to stay alone, stay isolated. That’s when she was the happiest. But during one thunderstorm, all of that changed and she met the first man she ever actually wanted to spend time with.
Leo made a habit of avoiding people when at all possible. Getting tied down, making friends, having a life only meant suffering. The darkness that followed him since his adolescent years never left, not really. It’d show up and ruin any hint of happiness that came his way. Running from his past and the brother that cursed him with this demon, Leo never expected to find something like home in the little country town of Levi. And he didn’t expect one storm to bring him to the barn of a girl with fire in her eyes and a face as beautiful as a sunrise. A sunrise that could chase away all the shadows.

Posted in Book Updates, Sneak Peek, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Peek At The Deviants

Here’s a Segment from Chapter 4 of my upcoming release of The Deviants!

Chapter 4

The burning, gnawing hunger in his stomach was gone. His muscles no longer ached. He felt light, almost weightless. And yet, there was a creeping sensation across his scalp. As if someone were rolling a set of dull spurs up and down the length of his back and around his temples.
Is this death? Please let it be death. I need this to be death.
But he wasn’t dead. That much he understood. Logan was breathing. In and out. His senses slowly came to him like it had that long ago morning. But there wasn’t the smell of the fresh carcass or the buzzing of flies around his head. There were voices whispering, their words intelligible at first. Then there was warmth. Clean clothes rubbed on his skin as his chest rose and fell with each breath.
Logan was very much alive.
Damn it.
A thousand different smells blended together, mingling in his nose like a swarm of mice pushing their way through a tiny hole. It was as if each person in the room were just inches from him, though he knew they weren’t. Sounds, so near and so distant, rang in his head. Laughter, talking, whispering, footsteps, shouting, rustling of fabric and the constant clanging of metal and wood. All of it pounded in his ears. For the last three weeks, he had been this way. Driven mad by all of it.
The only thing he could remember, through the madness, was a word. He remembered hearing it far off. Just one word. Loup-garou. He followed it, and the voices. He came to a white house. No, it was a school. And there was a man.
Logan remembered the way he felt in that moment as he faced the first person he had encountered since leaving South Carolina. Deep in his gut, a rage exploded. He didn’t understand why. He didn’t want to feel it. The stranger didn’t deserve it. But that thing in him, the one that craved meat, it hated him.
In the din, he heard that man’s voice.
“He must not have eaten for days,” he said. He sounded strange and foreign. Logan remembered once when an Englishman came to Ollie’s stables for help. He had been passing through, but Logan remembered that unique accent. So different from the southern cadence he had been raised with.
“I’d bet for weeks,” said another voice. It wasn’t as deep as the first, but gentler and thoughtful. “I’ve never seen another so malnourished.” Continue reading

Posted in Book Updates, Sneak Peek, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Newest Addition to the Legacy

This next novella in the Legacy Series is so precious to me. Not only because I’m introducing my favorite angsty loup-garou, but because it contains elements of some extremely old story ideas before I ever started my first book.

Devia, as many Loup-Garou Series fans know, was a small town just on the border between Florida and Alabama, where Logan and Darren first meet after the former runs away from home. But what many don’t know is that Devia is based off of a real place I’ve visited countless times. The first time I visited Florala (named for the combination of the two states it borders), I was with my mom on an antique shopping excursion. It was in one of the stores that I first came up with the idea of a town wholly made up of werewolves (loups-garous), where they hid their identity from the world and rejected any outsider interference. A tiny story went along with this idea, but thank the muses that it never saw the light of day.

When I first began to pen the Enigma and decided to develop these characters, I wove the concept of Devia into their stories. When the idea of the Legacy Series began to take shape, I knew I had to feature this town, and an entire book would be dedicated to it.

Well, I’ve written that book and it’s a bittersweet feeling to finally have it all down on paper, ready to share with the world. It’s my fond hope that this will be an epic close to Volume 3 of the Legacy Series. Releasing March 20th!

Preorder on Amazon

The-Deviants-fullAmerica – 1897
For Logan Elster, life was hard enough. With a gambling drunkard of a father and a mother who had to lie about her bruises, there’s only so much a sixteen year old can do. But when he comes home to witness another beating, he flies into a rage and discovers something about his ancestry that he never knew before. He has inherited a frightening gift from his grandfather and has become a werewolf, inadvertently destroying everything he holds dear. In search of the only man who can help him, Logan finds more than just a mentor in the small town of Devia, Alabama. He finds a community of men just like him. A community of werewolves.
But the community is in far more danger than their leader, Robert Croxen, will ever admit to. An industrial revolution is sweeping the nation and the railroad has come to lower Alabama. Devia is in the perfect place, but Robert won’t sell a single acre, no matter the price. Desperation drives the owner of the railroad to investigate what Robert’s hiding and what his spies find is something out of the old world fairytales. Question is, what will he do about it?

 

Posted in Book Updates, Indie Releases, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment