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Have you heard of the Montana Vortex?

reno 057I knew when I got the idea for THE ELF GUARDIAN that It would be set in the Bitterroot Mountains, like the others–but I wanted a unique twist. It came when I read about the Montana Vortex.

https://nbcmontana.com/news/montana-moment/montana-vortex-and-house-of-mystery-may-redefine-laws-of-physics

When paranormal investigator Chiara de Luna needs a boost to her sagging career, she makes a trip to northwestern Montana for new material. Little does she know that the real story she’ll find is much more outlandish than weirdly tilted trees and brooms standing up on their own.

cvr200x300elfguardian2Clan Elves of the Bitterroot (Book IV): The strong Earth energies that support the Clan Elves of the Bitterroot have gone awry for unknown reasons, and the powerful forces at work have not gone unnoticed by the outside world. When a paranormal investigator looking for a story to save her career is told a fantastic tale by the juvenile and disobedient elf prince Elliun, his young albino elf bodyguard Max must try to fix the mistake. Can Max get humans, mages, and elves working together in time to save the land before the energies spin out of control? Or is this the end of the elven world in the Bitterroot Mountains? [Urban Fantasy series from Dragonfly Publishing, Inc.]

 

 

Excerpt:

The phone line went dead before she could even say ‘goodbye.”

Not that she was going to say ‘goodbye.’ Anything but.

            “Hunter, wait—”

The once-sweet name turning bitter on her tongue, the whispered words sighed through her lips, becoming sharp, cutting her.

No, that was her teeth, biting down hard enough to make her bleed.

She set the phone into the stand. Gone.

Her knees gave way and she landed, hard, in her office chair, banging her elbow on the edge of the polished black-and-chrome desk. The pain reverberated up and down her arm, but did nothing to cloak the agony raging inside her.

So close…

            The news clippings across the surface of the desk seemed to mock her now. Paranormal Investigator Visits Alcatraz. DeLuna Solves Local Murder with Psychic Clues. Ghosts Give Up Secrets to Ohio Paranormal Expert.  All her work, fifteen years of building a reputation as an investigator of the weird and unexplained—what would it mean if Hunter Nowles walked away from her?

And why was he leaving? Because that stupid exorcism had turned out to be a fake.

Okay, and the haunting of that old mansion in Pennsylvania had turned out to be a bust.

She chewed her lip. To be honest, she’d failed to either prove or debunk the last seven investigations she’d undertaken. Lucky number seven.

“The great Chiara DeLuna bites the big one,” she muttered, waiting for the rim shot that had to follow. It was a joke, right? She was a joke. The network seemed to think so. Davis had already sent a memo warning her they wouldn’t fund her program any longer if she couldn’t produce results. And now Hunter had decided she wasn’t worth his time, either.

Or maybe he was just afraid that her failures would taint his own growing stature in the paranormal investigation community. Their three years as lovers didn’t mean anything at all?

            Her gaze was snagged by one of the news photos on the desk, herself smiling and shaking the beefy hand of some small-town police chief. See, that woman was Chiara DeLuna, “spooky” media star—the woman with the chic platinum blonde hair, the expensive wardrobe, and the ominous black sedan that seemed to part crowds when she arrived on a scene.

Not the woman who looked back at her from the mirror, dreary, bookish Bonny Lang from Euclid, Ohio whose most thrilling accomplishment before she’d hit the big time was surviving a wreck with a drunk driver, as a teenager. Her mother had been killed in the crash; Bonny had sold her first paranormal article based on a post-mortem conversation they had before her mother’s spirit faded.

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PAPERBACK [EAN 978-1-936381-51-7 | ISBN 1-936381-51-6] 5.5 x 8.5 trade trim or 6×9 library trim (184 pages) | Average Price: $12.99

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An adventure she never asked for, a past she never knew #MFRWHooks

One of the themes of this blog is adventure, which I think everyone should experience at some point. But sometimes adventures are planned…and sometimes….

elfqueen800x1200 As she reached Broadway, a worn blue bicycle pulled up next to her, horn screeching over its rider’s distinctive squeal. “Where is your car, woman?”
Jelani eyed her best friend, Iris Pallaton, whose blonde hair swirled above the bright cloud of a magenta blouse. “Richard had it towed.”
“Rat bastard!”
“Tell me about it. I’m late.” Jelani headed off again.
Iris pedaled along the curb beside her. “You should call his supervisor and complain.”
“And what? Humiliate myself because he’s a jerk? Screw him!”
“Maybe you should.” Iris laughed. “Then he’d be too awed to bother you again.”
Jelani glared as they crossed the street. “Funny.”
On the far side, she caught the glint of glass in the middle of the sidewalk. “What idiot would drop a bottle when there’s a trash can right there?” she grumbled. “I’ll get it. First karma points of the day.”
Iris climbed off the bike and put down the kickstand. “What is that?” She bent down near the object. “Oh, sweet Gaia! It’s a glass slipper!”
No kidding. It really appeared to be a shoe made out of glass. A large one.
“Who would have left this here?” Jelani picked it up, looking around for a prankster camera team. Something kept her from tossing the shoe.
“Try it on,” Iris whispered. “It would get Richard Snyder off your mind.”
“Richard is not on my mind. He’s on my crap list.”
“Oooh. Sorry.” Iris ran her finger over the shoe. “You’re chicken anyway.”
“Don’t even go there.”
“Chicken. Bawk-bawk.” Iris giggled.
“Fine! If it means I can get to work.” Reaching down with her right hand, she unzipped her boot and kicked it off. “Ready? You want a picture?”
Iris dug for her cellphone and raised it, ready to take a shot. “Just in case your prince shows up right then.”
“I don’t need a prince,” Jelani complained. “I don’t need a man. I need a new life.”
Setting the shoe on the ground, Jelani slipped her foot in it and gently stepped down, not sure to what expect.
The slipper shattered, slicing into the sole of her foot.
Nauseous, Jelani screamed and could only watch in disbelief as tiny men sprang from the blood trickling under the broken shoe. She lost track of how many. With the biggest maybe two inches high, the men scattered into the shadows around the nearest building and disappeared.
She lifted her foot, shaking off the blood, and examined her sole to see if glass remained mfrw-book-hooks400buried in her skin.
“Did you see that?” Iris gasped, nearly breathless. She grabbed at the wall, eyes closed for a moment.
Jelani felt faint, too, suddenly washed out. “I don’t know.”
There were no glass fragments in her foot or anywhere. The shoe had vanished. The only trace of the whole incident was dark blood, slowly drying in the sun on the sidewalk. As she watched, the cuts in her foot healed.
Iris knelt down to peer at Jelani’s foot.      “There were little people. Naked little people. They ran away. I swear they did.”
“Did you get pictures?”
“I almost forgot!” Iris got up and activated the screen on her cell phone, pressed the arrow. Jelani leaned close to watch the whole thing replay in living color. “Oh. Bless. My. God,” Iris said, in her shock reverting to the male deity.
Jelani nodded. “And the horse He rode in on.”

****

When Jelani tries on a real glass slipper left lying on the sidewalk, it splits in half and out pour dozens of two-inch high creatures who scurry away into the shadows. As if that’s not bizarre enough, she is soon approached by two men claiming (of all things) to be elves who need her help to rescue their queen.

Buy now at Amazon!

https://www.linkytools.com/basic_linky_include.aspx?id=296360

No room for elves in “Boz Angeles”?

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Interesting story about Bozeman, Montana, not too far from the Bitterroot. Seems like they have a lot of problems that my new home city, Asheville, NC, is dealing with:

https://www.businessinsider.my/should-i-move-to-bozeman-montana-2020-3/amp

Is it possible to build up too much fun for anyone to afford?

A little Clan Elves love from Madison Michael! Start reading this series today!

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Scenic drive along Idaho-12

Come by, read an excerpt and check out the new covers for the Clan Elves of the Bitterroot series!!

https://www.madisonmichael.net/the-elf-queen-a-paranormal-urban-fantasy-from-lyndi-alexander/

An energy vortex, and Bigfoot, too??

The northwest corner of Montana is a magical place indeed. Not only do my Clan Elves of the Bitterroot live in the forests alongside the Montana Vortex, the Sasquatch is also rumored to live there! Advice from the pros?  Pack your PBJ’s; leave the Skittles at home.

https://nbcmontana.com/news/local/mythical-or-mysterious-search-for-bigfoot-alive-among-montana-believers

I’ve got a bad feeling about this… Sci-Fi Fantasy Saturday for 1-25

Greetings from the frozen Northland! I used to live in Montana, where THE ELF MAGE is set, and I decided to leave there because it just got too cold in the winter. So today I woke up to -3 (-16 with the wind chill) here in Pennsylvania, and in Missoula, it’s 22 degrees. What’s up with that?

cvr200x300elfmageAnyway, as I sit here bundled up in my chair and just my fingers sticking out so I can type, I wanted to share a snippet of THE ELF MAGE, part of the Clan Elves of the Bitterroot series. This piece is near the beginning of the third book, just after the elf prince has been abducted by persons or elves unknown and the clan nearly destroyed. Daven Talvi, whose pride helped bring things to this point, has come to after being knocked out in a fight, in the queen’s enchanted home, finding himself alone and everything in shambles:

Astan had many times expressed his concern since the queen came to live in the forest with the clan, worried that Grigor had not perished alone in the forests, and that he would return to avenge his dead master Bartolomey. But Daven had counseled his son not to take action, to wait and watch. Astan disagreed, but obeyed his father, as duty required.

            And look where that has brought you.

            Truly Daven had underestimated the evil Grigor held within him, the sense of blackness that still pervaded the atmosphere inside the queen’s home. As a fullblood elf, well-trained in the ways of divination, Daven perceived several mental voices, several personas who had left the barest impression of themselves behind, an impression of menace and ill-will.

            Something about one in particular felt familiar to Daven. Something he had not felt for many years. Something so vague he couldn’t put a name to it yet. But he would.

***SFFSat logo

And thus begins a transformation that will lead to the biggest battle this clan has ever endured…that may be the end of them all.

For more on the series, visit the Clan Elves page or my tab above, or check it out at Amazon.com .

For other amazing snippets from sci-fi fantasy authors around the world, check out this week’s edition of SFFS here!

Realms of adventure await…

Sometimes we imagine that Adventure is what happens to other people. You know, those people with an unlimited supply of money who hire sherpa guides to take them crawling up the side of Mount Everest, or who buy themselves a seat on a supersonic transport or a submarine that tours coral reefs.

I write about pretty average people who find adventure in pretty mundane settings. THE ELF QUEEN’s Jelani Marsh, who is an average workaday girl, till she discovers some pretty deep secrets in her family’s past. THE ELF CHILD’s Ron “Crispy” Mendell, who begins to overcome his long-seated agoraphobia when he finds a wounded eagle and nurses it back to health. THE ELF MAGE’s Lane Donatelli, a child abuse survivor and World of Warcraft addict, who finds a whole new world right under his nose. TRIAD’s Trezanna Len, administrator of a small colony in space who’d like nothing better than to push her pencil every day and blend in to the bureaucracy–until the space pirates show up. Or in fall 2012’s LOVE ME, TOUCH ME, KILL ME, where a young divorcee is simply trying to start a new life for herself when her job as a newspaper reporter leads her to investigate a string of deaths that soon may include her own.

Adventure–as is also true about life–is what you make it. Ask any two-year-old walking with her parent to the local playground. While mom or dad might be thinking about work, or balancing the checkbook, or making appointments on the phone, that toddler sees butterflies, streets full of rushing vehicles, dogs, cats, green grass, flowers blowing in the wind, something new with each step.

We could do the same, if we just put our mind to it.  Or is it a matter of taking our “mind” out of the equation, allowing ourselves to experience the awe and wonder of even common things, opening the door to adventures in even ordinary situations?

All you need to come along with them is a comfortable chair and your imagination. Here’s your invitation. What are you waiting for?

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