Monday, February 5, 2018

Interview with Ilona Salley, author of Yesterday is Never Gone

Title: Yesterday is Never Gone
Author: Ilona Sally
Publisher: iUniverse
Genre: Thriller/Crime
Format: Ebook
Niki is no stranger to horrific personal challenges. As a child, she bravely endured abandonment by her father. While in her teens, she witnessed her mother’s murder and the abduction and presumed death of her only sibling. Although her secrets have always been carefully cloaked from others, they have shaped her personality more than she would like to admit. But with a past as terrible as hers, how can Niki ever hope for a bright future? Years later, Niki is a dedicated profiler in a criminal investigation agency with no idea her life is about to change exponentially. One day, through a quirky twist of fate, she receives startling news that her sister, Inge, is alive. As a driving force compels Niki to search for her, she embarks on a quest that takes her through cities and wilderness on two continents. She encounters difficult decisions, threatening mobsters, near-death experiences, and romance, yet nothing deters her from reaching her goal—not even a gruesome discovery about her father. But Niki is about to discover that things are never what they seem to be. In this thrilling tale, deception and inner turmoil hamper a young woman’s journey toward a new reality as she attempts to reconcile her past and find the truth.

Can we start out by telling us whether you are published for the first time or are you multi-published?

This is my first published work. It is the second novel I have written. I waited so long to write a novel because I always thought I would spend eight hours a day writing. But I found that three or four were all I could really do. The concentration is tiring. So, I found what works for me, and I allocated the mornings to writing.
When you were published for the first time, which route did you go – mainstream, small press, vanity published or self-published and why or how did you choose this route?

I talked to so many people who were frustrated by efforts to find someone to publish their work. One woman told me that it took her seven years to find a publisher. So, my decision to self-publish seemed clear. I went online and started looking. The next day, I searched again and an ad popped up. It was fate. There it was, a publisher. I researched this one some more, and was happy with what I saw. Then I talked to someone who had used the same self-publishing company, and he too was happy. So, I signed on.
How long did it take you to get published once you signed the contract?

Once I signed the contract, it probably took me another year and a half to get published. That is because I purchased several packages which they offered. First, it was an editing package which I found extremely helpful. My book was cut down from over 500 pages, to over 300 pages. I had to reorganize and made so many changes in order for things to flow. I also redid the entire beginning and end. That took a while. Then it was finished again, and I was able to apply for some kind of award. I had to wait, since others applied too. Then I was offered marketing packages some of which I decided to take. Each one was completely foreign to me and I had to try to figure out what I had even signed up for. This part was frustrating. And here I am on a Blog Tour. But I did learn a lot.
How did it make you feel to become published for the first time and how did you celebrate? 

What a sense of elation, I had. Finally, I thought, I was finished. The whole process had taken me about five years. When I began, I had no idea that it could take so long. But here I am, almost five months after the book was published, still finishing up.
What was the first thing you did as for as promotion when you were published for the first time?

I was published in the summer, just before a series of 4 parties and get-togethers. I attended all and was able to promote my book there. That includes a book launch. These occurred just before the advertising packages I purchased began to be distributed on the internet.
Ilona Salley emigrated from Germany to Toronto, Canada, with her family when she was three. Throughout her life, her interests have included squash, skiing, wood carving, literature, art, and languages. Her fascination with architecture and archaeology has led her to travel in search of ancient places and artifacts. After a long career as an educator, she expanded her horizons by teaching in England and China. Now, she spends part of each year in Fort Myers, Florida.

Monday, February 5
Interviewed at From Paperback to Leatherbound

Tuesday, February 6
Guest blogging at The Literary Nook

Thursday, February 8
Interviewed at Teresa Noel

Friday, February 9
Guest blogging at Fiction to Fruition

Monday, February 12
Guest blogging at She Writes

Tuesday, February 13
Guest blogging at Bent Over Bookwords

Wednesday, February 14
Book reviewed at A Book Lover

Thursday, February 15
Guest blogging at Niume

Friday, February 16
Interviewed at Review From Here

Monday, February 19
Guest blogging at All Inclusive Retort

Tuesday, February 20
Interviewed at Straight From The Author's Mouth

Wednesday, February 21
Guest blogging at The Revolving Bookshelf

Thursday, February 22
Interviewed at Mythical Books

Friday, February 23
Guest blogging at The Zen Reader

Tuesday, February 27
Book reviewed at I'm Shelf-ish

Thursday, March 1
Interviewed at The Writer's Life

Friday, March 2
Guest blogging at A Taste of My Mind

Tuesday, March 6
Interviewed at The Hype and the Hoopla

Thursday, March 8
Guest blogging at My Bookish Pleasure

Friday, March 9
Book reviewed at Lover of Literature

Monday, March 12
Book reviewed at The Dark Phantom

Tuesday, March 13
Interviewed at Read Between the Ink

Thursday, March 15
Interviewed at As the Page Turns

Monday, March 19
Guest blogging at Harmonious Publicity

Tuesday, March 20
Book reviewed at Voodoo Princess

Friday, March 23
Interviewed at Write and Take Flight

Tuesday, March 27
Book reviewed at A Title Wave

Wednesday, March 28
Guest blogging at The Writer's Life

Thursday, March 29
Book reviewed at Inkslinger's Opus

Friday, March 30
Interviewed at Carpe Librum

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Book Blast: Fragments of Life by Anita R. Gibbons - Win a $25 Gift Card

Title: Fragments of Life
Author: Anita R. Gibbons
Publisher: XlibrisAU
Genre: Fiction
Format: Ebook

This story is in a sense a complex tale that commences at the end. It relates the tale of a developing “rocky” love affair between its two major characters as they each discover their capacity to fall in love with another woman, the charting of which is seen through the eyes of the survivor.

Maggie Cameron is a thirty-something single mother who has already established a moderately successful publishing business in Vancouver, Canada. She is also struggling to cope with the strain of a failing marriage and the needs of her growing daughter. Then into her life enters Carla Green as her young personal assistant.

Carla quickly becomes an invaluable player in Maggie’s business and family life. Then everything moves smoothly for a number of years until the confluence of two major events brings their developing relationship to a climax.

Carla is forced to confront the reemergence of her childhood demons on two fronts when a previous illness brings her mortality into question again. Maggie undertakes to publish a lesbian-focused story by a well-respected novelist under an assumed name. Maggie is deeply worried about the latter, even after Carla offers to play a role in addressing her major concerns. However, it is of even greater concern to both Maggie and her daughter, Stephanie, now in her teens, that Carla’s shattering prognosis will have severe repercussions on their developing comfortable family relationship.

By way of devising a coping strategy, Maggie and Stephanie begin plotting a way to make Carla’s impending death as happy as possible for all concerned. However, Carla seems to be rejecting all their efforts until an opportunity emerges for Stephanie to spend part of her upcoming school holiday in France. After considerable persuasion, Carla finally agrees to accompany them on their planned grand tour of Europe. Hence, although the story is set primarily in Vancouver, Canada, it also incorporates their travels across Europe.

As they all set about arranging for and planning their holiday itinerary, Carla is also trying to address her long-held concerns about her own sexuality. She eventually discloses her fears to Maggie, whose initial reaction is less than positive, particularly as Carla also soon expresses her deep feelings for her boss.

This unexpected development causes Maggie to also attempt an analysis her own deepening feelings for Carla, but before she is able to draw any conclusions, an event immediately preceding their departure seemingly dooms whatever future their relationship might hold.

The saga then proceeds as a mini travelogue covering their adventures in France. Indeed, it is only when Maggie and Carla, having deposited Stephanie with her troublesome father, set off on their own adventure to Italy that they begin to address the changing nature of their relationship.

It is only when they reach the idyllic setting of the small coastal village of Positano that Maggie finally gives in to the perceived pressure from Carla and finally admits to herself that she has irrevocably fallen totally ‘in love’ with Carla. However, more problems emerge as they grapple with the issue of Maggie’s willingness to share her newfound knowledge with Stephanie and the outside world in general.

After she was born in the United Kingdom, Anitaís family moved to Australia when she was still quite young. She studied her BA (sociology/politics) and MA (womenís studies) at Victoriaís Monash University. She met her life partner at age twenty, and they spent thirty-seven years together in their small home in the inner suburbs of Melbourne. They both enjoyed traveling, sailing, and sharing their time with an array of pet cats. Her writing has consisted of short stories, poetry, and articles for professional journals. Following her partnerís death in 2007, this novel finally burst out of its shackles. Her other major pastimes include presenting a weekly program for Melbourne community radio and still traveling whenever possible.



Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Gift Certificate to the e-retailer of your choice
  • This giveaway begins January 22 and ends on February 2.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on February 3.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone! 


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, January 22
She Writes
A Taste of My Mind

Tuesday, January 23
Books Are Love
Review From Here

Wednesday, January 24
A Title Wave
The Book Czar

Thursday, January 25
A Book Lover
The Literary Nook

Friday, January 26
Voodoo Princess
Write and Take Flight

Monday, January 29
My Bookish Pleasures
All Inclusive Retort

Tuesday, January 30
Confessions of an Eccentric Bookaholic
From Paperback to Leatherbound

Wednesday, January 31
Lover of Literature
Bent Over Bookwords

Thursday, February 1
PUYB Virtual Book Club
Fiction to Fruition

Friday, February 2
The Hype and the Hoopla
Inkslingers Opus

Friday, January 26, 2018

Book Feature: A Reed in the Wind by Thomas Griffith - Win a $25 Gift Card

Inside the Book:

Title: A Reed in the Wind
Author: Thomas Griffith
Publisher: xLibris
Genre: Poetry
Format: Ebook

The book starts out with a very short autobiographical sketch.

The next piece is about lousy relationships. It begins by being about a cat who doesn’t like being a pet. Then a mouse is introduced. He doesn’t like being terrorized by the cat. I do some editorializing here too.

The third piece follows the four seasons. It starts with Spring, and I am in love. Then it moves to Summer, and I am having a hard time meeting the demands reality makes on me. Then comes Fall, and I write about the tragic sense of life. Then Winter, and I begin the long road of accepting and coping with being broken.

The fourth piece is about the first of the 10 LSD trips I took back in the hippie days. Millions of people have taken it, and the hippie sub-culture it spawned has profoundly positively effected our music, social skills, language, dress, literature, etc It really encouraged and facilitated my spiritual development. I heard that some colleges and clinics are experimenting with experiencing it.

The next two pieces are beautiful and my favorites. They embody and personify the mystical state of dreaming.

The talk about the relationship between seeing and dreaming. The next piece talks about the complex and crucial experience of inner space. Very little is known about inner space, but I believe it is the source of all life.

The next piece and the 11th piece are about sex. Sex creates all life on Earth. Fruits, vegetables, eggs, etc are foods which were made by nature to serve a reproductive purpose. People like to imagine sex is as simple as sticking a rod in a tube. But often the simplest things turn out to be the most complicated. Sex has a wonderful side and it has a dark side.

The next piece attempts to start the conversation about how we all are multiple personalities. It is a huge unknown territory. Multiple personality is a common psychiatric diagnosis.

The next piece is melancholy and pastoral musings about life.

The next piece is about sex again. Having a sexual orientation and perspective is a very difficult role to play.

The next piece is about how my teenage friends and I would come together and party.

The next piece has 4 sections: Women, children, men and teenagers. I try to describe the belief systems and purposes of each group.

I have written 2 other books: A Schizophrenic’s Notes and A Way with Heart.

I have taken psychotropic medication for the treatment of schizophrenia everyday for 40 years.  I was one of the founders of a mental health provider association that was staffed and run by mental patients.  It has a 15 million dollar budget.  I left it a few years ago because it had become like the system were trying to transform.  I have had 25 jobs, most of them were part-time, all of them were minimum wage.  I have volunteered umpteen times.  I went to 6 colleges as I moved around.  I have read a lot of classic and sacred literature.  I fool around with guitar and piano.


Thomas is giving away a $25 Gift Card!

Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Gift Certificate to the e-retailer of your choice
  • This giveaway begins January 22 and ends on February 2.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on February 3.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!


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Friday, January 19, 2018

Book Blast: The Seer of Grace and Fire by Natsuya Uesugi - Win a $25 Gift Card

Title: The Seer of Grace and Fire
Author: Natsuya Uesugi
Publisher: XLibrisUS
Genre: Fantasy
Format: Ebook
A human cleric translating an elfin prophesy must bring the work to the high court at Kannon in faerie before DarkFall, the solemn anniversary when all the male newborns were murdered seventeen years ago. If the translation does not arrive in time, all is lost. Timorn, a seventeen year old ranger travels the human towns, hiring out his services. A mysterious elfin woman hires him to take her to Kannon before DarkFall, and only he can lead her with his purple faerie eyes. 

The evil Valkyris is amassing an army to attack Kannon at DarkFall, insisting she possesses the prophecy. Sending her dark mage Dalannin to infiltrate the faerie, he marches his demon hordes toward Kannon and sneaks into the palace. Ethesian, the seventeen year old faerie daughter of King Ailon, plays the dragon lyre, a female magic. Yet recently, she has started having prophetic dreams as if she were male. When a lie is revealed, Ethesian is tasked to study magic she must master before DarkFall. Will Timorn reach Kannon before the Valkyris, and Ethesian master a magic she shouldn’t possess? Secrets and lies, revelations and wizardry, DarkFall is coming and so is the reluctant faerie who would be king. Learn more in the first book of the dark fantasy trilogy, The Seer of Grace and Fire.

Natsuya Uesugi is a systems analyst and has worked in the design of aerospace, semiconductor and financial systems. With an MBA in International Management and a minor in Japanese, Natsuya has been around computers most of his life. He is author of the science fiction grydscaen novels and manga, and the yaoi novellas and manga, graphic noiz. He studied animation and game design in art school and created all the illustrations and cover art for The Seer of Grace and Fire. He enjoys skydiving, cosplay, anime and writing poetry.

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Thursday, January 18, 2018

Book Blast: Ordainment Betrayal by Dennis Quiles - Win a $25 Gift Card

Title: Ordainment Betrayal
Author: Dennis Quiles
Publisher: iUniverse
Genre: Thriller/Suspense
Format: Ebook

Jack Steele is an ex–naval intelligence officer turned private investigator who has just proposed to his girlfriend, Martha, over dinner when he sees a bloodied and frightened boy running toward him outside the restaurant. After Martha steps in to protect the boy from the two men in hot pursuit, a gun battle ensues, leaving Jack’s beloved fiancée dead on the sidewalk. While Jack grapples with the ramifications of her tragic death, he is unwittingly pulled into the dark world of human trafficking at the hands of an Albanian mob doing business near Lake Michigan. Desperate for answers, Jack partners with a Chicago police detective to learn about the organized crime culture and develop a plan to stop the trafficking operation and free their victims before they are sold on the black market. As Jack puts his own life on the line, he must battle the powerful Catholic Church and stop the cunning exploits of a deranged pedophile priest who believes he is doing God’s work by turning children into little angels. But will Jack manage to accomplish his heroic mission before it is too late for more innocent victims? Ordainment Betrayal shares the thrilling tale of a former intelligence agent’s dangerous quest to stop an Albanian human trafficking operation in collusion with the Roman Catholic Church..


Dennis Quiles earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and a master’s degree in business administration. A US military veteran and an accomplished professional of the protection business, he is the director of global security for one of the world’s largest multinational corporations. Quiles and his wife have three children and currently live in Illinois. This is his third book.