Welcome to the December 4th stop on the blog tour for Queen’s Ascension by Barb Jones, organized by Bewitching Book Tours. Be sure to follow the rest of the tour for more excerpt spotlights and a giveaway! (More on that at the end of this post.)
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About the Book
The Blood Prophecy Book Three
by Barb Jones
Published 17 August 2020
by World Castle
Cover Artist: Steven J. Catizone
Genre: Paranormal Fantasy
Page Count: 236
Add it to your Goodreads TBR!
Bloodshed. Heartbreak. Revelation.
When the darkness was compelling and the heart knew no bounds, was there really a right choice? With Michael’s life hanging in the balance, Amber had a choice: save her star-fated love or keep on the crusade to unite the magical community.
For Amber, her fate was sealed even before her birth and it was her destiny to fight the great battle ahead of her. But, when it came to her heart — her friends, her great love — Amber’s torn. Not only was she the Queen, but she was a human in every sense of the word. She was vulnerable. And so the very people — Chloe and Michael — that gave her strength, quickly became her weakness. It wasn’t her fault she loved too much, was it?
Nevertheless, the Tall Dark Man had set a plan in motion that could threaten the very existence of the Blood Prophecy. Would he gather his dark forces and succeed in destroying Amber once and for all? Or, would she assemble her powerful friends and save the world?
Malakai, Seattle, Present Day
With the betterment of both Michael and Rae, Malakai was glad that they were well and fine; nevertheless, he needed some time to decompress. All the magical commotions that had occurred were too overwhelming for him. He needed some sort of release.
He enjoyed the brisk jog in the park, as he cut through the sharp wind of the cold night. But this did nothing to lift his spirits. He was happy that Amber’s smile finally met her eyes. That was all he’d ever wanted for her: happiness, that’s it. There was nothing more he could ask for—she was his priority. Yet, in the back of his mind, as in his heart, he couldn’t help but believe the ancient legend that he’d heard so long ago was the certifiable truth, as it was written in Eschmun’s scroll.
…her fate is tied to the true alpha of the wolves. A blood drinker will stand formidable, but it is the nature of the child to call upon the true alpha and bring him to the queen’s inner heart.
Could this be the truth? he often wondered as he traveled the world collecting artifacts and evidence supporting this notion. Yes, he’d crafted a reliquary, quite accidentally, and people assumed it was to keep the magic insulated, away from the humans. But that wasn’t the case, at least not for him. He so wanted to believe, just from the sheer fact that it was said in the scroll. But Malakai was a man of logic, driven by cold hard data. Although wanting to romanticize that his destiny was tied with Amber’s, he needed confirmation. He wanted validation for the strong emotions he was feeling.
* * *
Zaraquel, Seattle, Present Day
Walking the cemetery grounds as she so often did without the knowledge of her parents, Zaraquel wandered at a leisurely pace. She whipped out her phone and checked the time, which read midnight. Her brow quirked in confusion, as she had expected Loquiel some time ago. With her long hair styled in two braids and her bright red coat to keep her warm, she sat down on a bench.
She was elated that her best friend, other than the one that was currently running late, was alive and breathing. Rae had given Zaraquel a terrible fright, for she had never known the death of someone close to her heart. She shook, not from the cold, but from remembering the tragic vision she had of Rae’s demise.
A throaty growl awoke her from her thoughts. She heard the fast footfalls of someone, something, running toward her, and she put her fight training to use. Zaraquel spun around, so much so that her wings unfurled. But that did not deter the undead man from attacking her. His decaying flesh was a sight she instantly wished she could unsee, but she had to fulfill her duty and protect the people, which meant ridding the world of this monster.
She punched him in the stomach as her father had taught her, but that did nothing to stop him from throwing his fists at her. She dodged his poor attempts at aiming for her and grabbed his arm, twisting him around so he fell to his knees. Her weight on his back caused the corpse to fall to the ground. It growled in anger, shaking its head savagely, as if it couldn’t wait to get back to its feet. Zaraquel, however, had plans of her own. She stood briefly to step on his neck to keep him from moving, and whispered a spell she’d learned from a book.
“Capite obtruncato intestinisque extractis.”
She heard the cracking of his bones, the stretching of his skin; with a pop! his head flew off, gore spattering in every direction. His body went limp, as it was before he had risen from the ground.
Zaraquel sighed in frustration as she walked off, disappointed from another unnecessary and unjustified kill. She continued to walk the grounds and felt a rush of warm wind, the kind she felt every time Loquiel was near. She turned and there he was, right behind her.
About the Author
Barb Jones is a paranormal thriller author, IT professional, and the mother of two fantastic children. She is known for her ability to create relatable characters and detailed settings without compromising her unique plots. When people have asked her who she is, she’s been quoted saying, “It can be hard to write at times, but never give up on what you’re passionate about.” She’s a mother, first and foremost, and an author and supernatural enthusiast after. She currently resides in Sarasota, FL, but is a Seattle native at heart. When she’s not writing, she’s traveling and looking for new inspiration for her books.
Holiday Extravaganza Features
HOLIDAY CHRISTMAS MOVIES WITH TEENS
(Jenna’s comment: I’m not sure if “I” is Barb or someone from Bewitching, but it’s not me. I’ll convert volumes to metric and temperatures to celsius at the ends of lines for my fellow non-Americans.)
Whether you look forward to the presents, the cookies, the food, the music, there is one part of Christmas that also stands out. Yes – THE CHRISTMAS MOVIES! No Christmas season would be complete without the movies. I’m not really talking about the Hallmark Christmas Movies, but the movies that can be seen with the whole family, all ages, for a night of laughter and fun. I mean, who doesn’t like Buddy the Elf, for one?
Take for example, a family with teens (that’s me!). It is hard nowadays to pull them away for baking cookies, decorating the tree, all those holiday memories that they participated in when they were smaller. That time has been replaced with technology, video games, social media, you name it. Let’s be honest here. Not many teens nowadays want to bake cookies but they will be the first in line to take a cookie fresh out of the oven.
But one thing I can count on in spending time with my teens during Christmas is watching Christmas Movies. Not all, but certain ones. Buddy the Elf, for example, brings forth a sense of humor, comedy antics and his high level of energy that will engage the teens as well as the rest of the family. I put Buddy the Elf on at least once a Christmas season and my teens will curl up on the couch, with iPhones in their hand, but mostly they are watching and laughing. I even had my oldest text her friends about the funny scenes and soon, one after another, asked to come over to watch it with us. To me, it’s not about keeping the same traditions as your child grows, but to find ones that still warm them up to the holidays. The other movie that is a hit is Nightmare Before Christmas! With these two, we have always had so much fun keeping the Christmas spirit alive!
I will still bake the cookies, decorate the house, even if I do it by myself or with my mother. But the one tradition I can keep in my heart as my teens continue to grow up is a Christmas Movie. The key is to find that one movie or two that they will laugh at, they will love, and no matter how much time is spent on the movie, you are together with them and at the end of the day, that’s all that matters. I know this year will be different. Not a lot of people can gather in one place, but there are creative ways to go about this. I already told my daughter to set up a watch party for her friends when we turn on Buddy the Elf! I will even deliver Christmas cookies to her friends so the only thing they are missing is being in the same room with us!
In fact, I am enclosing a chocolate bark recipe to make that teens will love!
Ghirardelli’s Dark or Milk Chocolate (4 oz at least) (118ml)
Ghirardelli’s White Chocolate (4 oz at least) (118ml)
*Miscellaneous toppings of your choice
(I use broken candy cane pieces, sprinkles, etc.)
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Melt Dark or Milk Chocolate and White Chocolate. I prefer to melt in a pot compared to the microwave. Use a double boiler if you have one. You want it to be smooth and creamy, fully melted.
- Pour the dark/milk chocolate over the parchment paper.
- Drizzle the white chocolate over the chocolate.
- Using a toothpick, swirl the white chocolate into the dark/milk chocolate.
- Decorate the top as you desire.
- Place in the refrigerator for at least 45 minutes. Longer is sometimes necessary.
- Once hardened, break into pieces.
*Serve this with a tasty chex mix snack on the side! The combination of flavors will be a hit – My teens take a bite of bark then a handful of chex mix!
One of my favorite holiday dinner recipes
I have hosted Christmas in my home every year since 2000. I have tried a variety of dishes, combinations, food pairings with wine and this is one of my favorites.
Pineapple and Bourbon Glazed Ham
Ingredients for the Glaze
2/3 cup brown sugar (dark is better but either will work)
6 fresh cloves
6 bay leaves
1 fresh pineapple (core removed), sliced
2 tbsp chardonnay vinegar
To make the glaze:
- Place sugar, spices and 1 tbsp water in a large frying pan over high heat. Swirl with spatula until bubbling and golden.
- Add pineapple pieces, chardonnay vinegar and cook for approximately 6 minutes. Turn the pineapple pieces over until the pineapple is golden and glaze has formed from the fruit juice. Set aside and cool.
- Preheat over to 350F (175C). Line a rack with bay leaves. Prepare the ham by cutting around the edge of the ham and lift off the skin. Discard the skin. Baste the fat from the ham with some of the glaze and place the ham on the rack and set in a large roasting pan.
- Roast the ham, basting with the glaze every 20 minutes for 2.5 hours until caramelized. Add pineapple pieces in the last 30 minutes. 5. Slice and serve with the pineapple.
One lucky follower of this tour will walk away with a $15 Amazon gift card and another will win a signed set of the Blood Prophecy books (paperbacks.)
Visit Bewitching Book Tours to find the other Holiday Extravaganza tours and enter to win more awesome prizes!
Dec 1 T’s Stuff
Dec 2 Supernatural Central
Dec 3 Lisa’s World of Books
Dec 4 Westveil Publishing
Dec 7 The Book Junkie Reads
Dec 8 Momma Says: To Read or Not to Read
Dec 9 Other Worlds of Romance, Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Paranormal Romances
Dec 10 Paranormalists
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