Birthday Bash: Joyce McPherson-The Pandora Device

Today I welcome Joyce McPherson to the blog with a wonderful guest post. Thanks for much for taking part in my Birthday Bash!! 


Happy Birthday, Hannah! Here’s a cake just for you!

In THE PANDORA DEVICE, Stella and her BFF Lindsey spark an adventure when they find a rusty box hidden in the piles of stuff at Stella’s house. Her grandmother collects everything—old typewriters, crazy hats, and spindly umbrellas—and this is the fabulous recipe that Stella and Lindsey create using an old springform pan they found.

You will need:

Vanilla Cake Mix

Package of Oreo™ cookies (or similar cookie)

½ gallon of vanilla ice cream

Chocolate syrup

Two 8-inch cake pans and one 9 or 10 inch springform pan

Step 1: Use the regular 8-inch cake pans to bake two vanilla layers from a cake mix. You will only need one layer, so freeze the second one for later use.

Step 2: Place ten Oreo™ cookies in a large ziplock bag and use a rolling pin to crush them into crumbs.

Step 3: When the cake layer is cool, you are ready to assemble the cake! Allow vanilla ice cream to soften for about five minutes, and then scoop some into the springform pan. Smooth a ½ inch layer on the bottom of the pan.

Step 4: Place the layer of vanilla cake inside the springform pan. (Comment from Stella: It should not touch the sides, so center it as best you can.)

Step 5: Place whole Oreo™ cookies around the edges of the pan, between the cake and the wall. (See picture below.)

Step 6: Scoop more vanilla ice cream into the springform pan. Smooth it over the top and press it down the sides around the cookies. (Lindsey’s comment: If you swirl a spatula over the top, it will help the ice cream settle around the sides, but don’t let the ice cream get too melty.)

Step 7: Sprinkle the cookie crumbs over the top and drizzle with chocolate syrup. Place the cake in the freezer until you are ready to serve it. Allow about 1-2 hours for the ice cream to freeze hard again.

Step 8: When you’re ready to serve, release the hinge on the springform pan and remove the sides. Voila!

 

When you cut the cake, it looks like this!

 


Wow! Doesn’t that look so yummy!!!

Here is the link to the Rafflecopter. All entries must be from the U.S., I cam only shipping to U.S. addresses.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Birthday Week 2017!

Birthday Week is back!

 

It has been a few years since I’ve done one of these and I am so excited to bring it back. For those who are not aware Birthday Week isn’t my blog birthday week, it’s my real birthday and this year I am turning 26 this year. Because birthday’s are awesome I take an entire week to share features from some awesome authors and giveaway some books!

 

Schedule

April 17, 2017: The Pandora Device guest post of Joyce McPherson

April 18, 2017: The Sixth Domicile guest post by Courtney Ruggles

April 19, 2017: Safe and Sound guest post by Alli Hope

April 20, 2017: My Birthday!!!!! Andromeda guest post by Meg Trotter

April 21, 2017: The Temptation of Adam by Dave Connis

 

 

I went back and forth trying to decide to give these away as individual prizes or one big prize pack and since everyone wants more than one thing on their birthday so the winner will receive copies of all these books! Because The Temptation of Adam hasn’t released yet, the winner will receive a pre-order.

 

I hope you all join me for these fun guest posts and prizes!

 

 

Immortal Fire Blitz

Immortal Fire
Annette Marie
(Red Winter Trilogy #3)
Publication date: April 11th 2017
Genres: Fantasy, Romance,Young Adult

Once, Emi believed the heavenly gods were righteous and wise, while the earthly yokai spirits were bloodthirsty and evil. But with a traitorous deity poised to destroy her world, and the yokai standing as humanity’s only defense, the lies of her upbringing have toppled to reveal a far more terrifying reality.

Despite the looming threat, Emi can’t escape her greatest distraction: Shiro, the fox yokai who has so deftly claimed her heart for his own. Soon—too soon—she will have to break the curse that binds his magic and memories. And once the ancient power inside him awakens, the yokai she loves will be changed forever.

As the earthly gods gather to wage war against the heavens, Emi and Shiro must gamble everything to turn the tide against their immortal, all-powerful foes. Together, they will find a way to save her world—even if it means losing each other.

Goodreads / Amazon


Each book in the Red Winter Trilogy includes ten stunning illustrations by award-winning artist Brittany Jackson.

This is an exclusive preview of one illustration featured in Immortal Fire.

EXCERPT:

Violent shivers pulled Emi from the depths of sleep. The chill in the room cut right through the layers of blanket and kimono, and her toes ached from the cold. Curled in a tight ball beneath her blankets, she exhaled harshly, half expecting her breath to fog theair.

Beyond the thin partition that separated her sleeping quarters from the rest of the room, the windows rattled in a fierce wind. A winter storm? A feverish ache throbbed in her muscles, though she didn’t think she had slept for more than a few hours.

Yawning, she forced her tired body off the futon. Cold hit her like a splash of frigid water but even that wasn’t enough to dispel her drowsy daze. A short, fumbling search uncovered no extra blankets in the closet within her small alcove. Wrapping an arm around herself for warmth, she slid a panel open and peeked into the main room.

The remains of Shiro and Yumei’s late dinner had been cleared from the table, and the unlit brazier was devoid of light or warmth. Across the room, a second futon had been laid out near Shiro’s, and dark shapes filled both.

Trust the yokai to sleep right through the freezing cold. Behind their futons was a larger closet where bedding was stored. Surely there would be an extra blanket in there.She stumbled toward it in exhaustion. Her chest felt hollow and empty, and some of the chill that plagued her emanated from within.

As she crossed the room, an icy breeze rushed across her. Jerking back a step, sheturned toward the sliding garden doors. A six-inch gap revealed the night-swathed garden beyond, where snow flew almost horizontally in the wind.

Why on earth had they left the door open? With a tired scowl, she yanked it shut. The room immediately felt warmer. Shaking her head, she stopped at the foot of Shiro’s futon, the light from the window glimmering on his white hair. Not that long ago, she hadwoken him from a nightmare, and he had thrown her into a wall before rousing enough to realize he was about to rip her throat out. Attempting to sneak between their futons toreach the closet was probably unwise.

“Shiro?” she whispered. “Are you awake?”

He didn’t stir. Neither did Yumei, who slept on his back with his head turned away, his hair splayed untidily across his face in a way that was very unlike the usually reserved yokai. He rarely slept when anyone else was nearby, at least as far as she’d seen. Maybe her ki had tired him.

“Shiro?” she tried again more loudly.
When he again didn’t move, not even a twitch of his ears, a nervous prickle climbed her spine. Shiro

wasn’t that deep of a sleeper. And why hadn’t her clumsy banging of the garden door woken them? A spike of adrenaline cut through her drowsiness as she realized how unlikely it was that Shiro and

Yumei would go to sleep with a door ajar. Had the wind blown it open? Or … something else?

She scoured the room, but it was clearly empty. Biting the inside of her cheek, she stepped between the futons and crouched.

“Shiro,” she called. “Wake up!”

No reaction. Hoping he wouldn’t attack her, she touched his shoulder. He slept on, eyes closed, face slack. Her apprehension intensified into real fear.

“Shiro!” She gripped his shoulder and shook it, but he still didn’t wake or so much asstir. Was she dreaming? Was this a nightmare? She spun around and reached for Yumei.

“Yumei, wake up! Please wake up!” She shook him but he was as unresponsive as Shiro. In desperation, she hit his shoulder with her open palm, yelling his name. “What’swrong with you? Wake up!”

As she turned, intending to grab a handful of snow from outside to shove in Shiro’s face, the air above him shimmered strangely. She went rigid, squinting into the darkness.

A shadow took form. A small body, thin limbs, ragged black hair. The ghostly child crouched on Shiro’s chest, her blank, bottomless stare fixed on Emi.

Her heart thudded in her ears. A kanashibari, the dream-weaving yokai that had been watching Emi in the bath. That was what she’d forgotten to warn Shiro about! And now it was sitting on him, and he wouldn’t wake up.

She lurched back to Yumei. A second kanashibari appeared before her, perched on his torso. The new one, another little girl with short, stringy hair and a pale kimono, looked up at Emi with empty black eyes.

The child’s lips pulled up in a rictal grin, and her tiny arm shot out.

Emi shoved the yokai away, but her hands passed right through the spectral body, feeling nothing but frosty air.

The yokai reached for her face and a small, frigid, solid palm pressed against her forehead. A wave of burning ice surged into Emi’s skull, blanketing her thoughts. Impossible, unyielding drowsiness crashed through her.

Before she could react, before she could even think about resisting, she collapsed on top of Yumei’s unconscious body and slid into darkness.

The complete trilogy:

Available now on Amazon!

 

Author Bio:

Annette Marie is the author of the Amazon best-selling Steel & Stone series, which includes Goodreads Choice Award nominee Yield the Night, and fantasy trilogy Red Winter. Her first love is fantasy, but fast- paced urban fantasy and tantalizing forbidden romances are her guilty pleasures. She lives in the frozen winter wasteland of Alberta, Canada (okay, it’s not quite that bad) with her comparatively sensible husband and theirfurry minion of darkness—sorry, cat—Caesar. When not writing, she can be found elbow-deep in one art project or another while blissfully ignoring all adult responsibilities.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

 

GIVEAWAY!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Safe and Sound by Alli Hope

Title: Safe and Sound
Author: Alli Hope
Publisher: Elphantine Publishing
Publication Date: February 22, 2017
Source: Purchased

From Goodreads

16 year-old, Hailey Perish, knows her life can’t get much worse. Since her dad split a few years ago, Hailey’s mother has spiraled hard and fast, careening toward rock bottom and threatening to take her daughter down with her. Hailey now marks time by evictions, her mother’s poker games, and Saturday School where she voluntarily shows up for weekend detentions to secure her one promised meal of the week. She has no room for relationships, especially with someone like her childhood love and junior class golden boy, Carson Hart. Hailey trusted him once and Carson failed her. She’s determined not to let herself be hurt again.

When Hailey’s mom does the unthinkable and bets her own daughter in a high stakes poker game, Mitch, the loan shark, is all too eager and determined to collect on his debt. To him, Hailey is nothing but property. His property. And he’ll do anything to recover it. On the run from a fate that promises a much worse life than she already knows, there’s only one person in the world Hailey can call for help.

Will Carson be there for her in her darkest hour and deliver her from harm’s way safe and sound? Or will he abandon Hailey—just like he’s always done—just like they all do?

Alli Hope’s debut novel delivers an unforgettable story about love & surviving in the dark places. Safe & Sound contains mature situations and content.

Safe and Sound by Alli Hope is a heart wrenching story that follows Hailey on a mission to find her father after her mother loses a bet that lands her in the hands of human traffickers. Backed into an impossible situation, Hailey turned to the one person she knows she can always count on, Carson. The childhood best friends have drifted apart over the last six years, but they have never forgotten each other. When rumors bound around school about Hailey, Carson is always there to punch someone out…literally.
Alli Hope writes Hailey’s relationship with her mother in a way that completely shattered my heart. She loves her mother so much and does nothing by try to protect her even though her mother literally gambles away Hailey’s life. And the way she thinks of her father, as if this man who abandoned her years ago is going to show up and be this shining star in her life is absolutely heartbreaking. It shattered me so much that I had to put the book down for a little bit and then get back story when I had taped it back together a little bit.
The journey itself in the story isn’t about the road trip, not really, instead it’s about Hailey trying to figure out what she deserves in life. After years of watching over her mother, being harassed by one of her mom’s many boyfriends, working her butt off to make sure they always have a home to live in she sets out on this journey where she has to come to terms with the fact that she is important to.
I really truly feel like this journey of self-discovery and reliance is the true journey of this book. Yes, Caron has his own narration too, but it all comes together and revolves around Hailey.
Another thing that Alli Hope shows in this novel is human trafficking. This is a horrific thing that is so widespread and happens every single day, every single hour and moment, but doesn’t have the well-known attention that it deserves. What’s scary is that Mitch is able to control people with money so easily. This is how this can all occur in real life. One of the most lucrative trades throughout time is the buying and selling of human beings. Money can buy you a lot of things and it can also buy you obedience and silence. This book only gives just a tiny miniscule glimpse into the underground world of human trafficking, but it was enough to leave an impact.
If you’re looking for a gritty contemporary with a tiny bit of romance flung in then this book is for you!