Tara West

YA paranormal/fantasy and New Adult author


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Curse of the Ice Dragon wins Best Action and Adventure!

bestactio  THANK YOU to all of my readers, especially my awesome fan club for helping Curse of the Ice Dragon win the eFestival of Words, Best Action/Adventure!  This book has such a special place in my heart, and I’m so glad it’s received so many wonderful reviews and now this award. It means so much to me. Again, THANK YOU!

Click HERE to see the list of winners.

For those of you who haven’t read it, here’s what it’s about:

From the bestselling paranormal author of The Whispers Series comes a new fantasy saga.

Born with mark of the Mighty Hunter, Markus has the skill and strength to feed his people, but not to confront his own tyrannical father. Shamed by his cowardice, Markus releases his frustration on the forest creatures.

The village prophet warns that Markus’s reckless ways will bring down The Hunter’s Curse, and for every animal Markus kills, his loved ones will suffer the same fate. When the warnings go unheeded, the Sky Goddess unleashes her ice dragon. Now Markus must flee the dragon without killing it or his beloved brother will die.

Markus’s flight takes him to the lands of the mysterious Ice People. There, the beautiful maiden Ur

a helps Markus learn the compassion and courage he needs to face the wrath of the Goddess, but the final confrontation will not be w

ithout price, as Markus must choose between the life of his brother and the fate of the girl he loves.

* * *

Expect book two in this saga next year.  I am a little behind with my Say When and Whispers series, but I haven’t forgotten about my Keepers of the Stones saga. Also, did you know, I’ve written two companion novelettes to go with Ice Dragon and both are free digital downloads? The first story is The Shifting Sands and the second is Witch Flame.

Get Curse of the Ice Dragon on Kindle, Nook, iTunes and in print.

Get Witch Flame on Kindle, Nook and iTunes.

Get The Shifting Sands on Kindle, Nook and iTunes.

Happy reading!!!

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Heroes and Villains blog hop

306058_10152246040880476_703387183_nWelcome to my stop on the Heroes and Villains blog hop. Read below to see how you can win a free signed copy of my YA fantasy, Curse of the Ice Dragon. A few months ago I talked about my villain, Madhea, an evil goddess from Curse of the Ice Dragon.  You can read about Madhea here.

For this blog post, I wanted to focus on one of the heroes in my book, Alec. Though he’s plagued with illness and not able to hunt or defend himself like his brother, The Mighty Hunter, Marcus, Alec is a hero to me because he’s never afraid to stand up to his tyrannical father. Despite their father’s best efforts to make Markus a monster, Alec serves as Marcus’s moral compass, teaching his brother right from wrong, knowing their father will beat him for it. To me, a true hero isn’t measured by physical abilities and strength, but the strength of heart and willingness to stand up for what he/she believes is right.

Curse of the Ice Dragon scene fCurseoftheIceDragon_web,jpgrom chapter one:

“I wish I never had such skill. I wish I was more like you.” Tossing the blade aside, Markus turned toward Alec.

                Eyes narrowing, Alec’s gaze intensified. “Do you wish for every breath to be a struggle? To be weak and infirm, and hardly a man even at nine and ten winters!”

                “You are the strongest man I know, Alec. It takes strength and courage to stand up to our father. And your kindness to me…” His voice quavered as he dropped his gaze. “I do not understand.”

                “You are my brother.” Alec gripped Markus by both shoulders, looking up into his face with a pained expression. “What is there to understand?”

                Markus shrugged and swallowed the lump in his throat that seemed to originate from a hollow pit in his belly. “He beats you, even for my mistakes. A lesser man would despise me.”

                “You have good in you, brother, despite our father’s best efforts to make you a monster.”

                “I do not stand up to him as you do. I do not defend you as I ought.”

                “You might be as strong as an ox, but you are a lad still. Your time will come, brother.” Alec’s voice cracked before he coughed into his hand for several interminable seconds.

                Finally, Alec righted his posture and looked at Markus with a glazed-over expression. “On the night you were born, I made a promise to the Goddess that I would teach you compassion. A promise I will give my last dying breath to uphold. This is why I scold you when you kill more than you can eat. A kind hunter respects those animals he kills and does not take their lives unnecessarily.”

                Markus turned back to his kill. Picking up the knife, he cut through the meat of the rabbit before ripping open the ribcage with the tip of his blade. “Aye Brother, but when I see an easy target, I cannot stop the blood that pumps through my veins, driving me to kill the beast. It is a feeling I cannot explain.”

                With a hand on Markus’ back, Alec breathed at barely a whisper. “You must not surrender to your impulses.”

                Repressing the urge to laugh at his brother’s request, Markus pulled down the animal’s innards before ripping them free of its body. A smile crossed his face as the gutting was finally finished. All that was left were meat and bones for the stew.

                “I cannot help it.” He shrugged before tossing the organs in the bucket.

                Alec stood speechless behind him, leaving nothing between them but the wheezy sound of his strained breathing and the odor of fresh blood.

                Finally, he cleared his throat. “Killing comes too easily to you, Markus. It would seem your gift is more of a curse.”

TaraWest.ent

Do you have a favorite fantasy or sci-fi hero? Leave your answer in the comments below and one random winner will be chosen to receive a free signed copy of Curse of the Ice Dragon

THANKS for stopping by! 🙂 Tara                                              

Blog Hop Participants — Visit them to win other prizes!

  1. Nyki Blatchley
  2. Martin Bolton
  3. Mike Cooley
  4. Karin Cox
  5. Joanne Hall
  6. Jolea M Harrison
  7. Tinney Sue Heath
  8. “K. Scott Lewis
  9. Paula Lofting
  10. Liz Long
  11. Peter Lukes
  12. Mark McClelland
  13. M. Edward McNally
  14. Sue Millard
  15. Rhiannon Douglas
  16. Ginger Myrick
  17. David Pilling
  18. Kim Rendfeld
  19. Terry L Smith
  20. Tara West
  21. Keith Yatsuhashi


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Curse of the Ice Dragon book review tour and giveaway!

for.facebookHey, big thanks to Goddess Fish Promotions for my book review tour this week. Every day through Saturday, Curse of the Ice Dragon will have a new blog stop and review. Stop by and comment for your chance to win a free download of one of my books. I’ll give away one ebook download each day. One lucky random winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card at the end of the tour.

Here’s the blog lineup. The more you enter, the more chances you have to win!

April 22:  Voicu Mihnea Simandan
April 23:  Books in the Hall
April 24:  Long and Short Reviews
April 25:  Lindsay’s Scribblings

April 26:  Shelley’s Book Case
April 26:  Journey of a Bookseller

And guess what? Even if you don’t win a download, the book is marked down to .99 on Amazon this week, too.  Click here to purchase.

😉 Tara


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Cover reveal! Witch Flame, the prelude to my new fantasy saga

WitchFlameKindle.Nook

New cover! Photography by http://charligal.deviantart.com/ and artwork by http://maiarcita.deviantart.com/ .

DOWNLOAD WITCH FLAME FOR FREE ON AMAZON, BARNES AND NOBLE AND ITUNES!

Ever since the launch of Witch Flame a few months ago, I have not been happy with the cover. It was okay, but didn’t have the punch I felt the story deserved. Then I came across this fantastic artwork on Deviant Art by Maiarcita  and I knew I had to have her artwork for my story. After making arrangements with the Maiarcia and the beautiful photographer and model, Charligal from Deviant Art this cover was mine!

Witch Flame (A Keepers of the Stones Novelette) by Tara West

From the bestselling author of the paranormal Whispers series, comes a new fantasy saga…

Feira, a fledgling witch just discovering her own powers, must battle warriors and monsters before she and her true love can find a safe haven away from the vengeful eye of a jealous goddess.

Bonus origin myth included: The Beginning of Time

This short story is a prelude to Curse of the Ice Dragon, Keepers of the Stones, Book One.

Excerpt from Witch Flame:

Chapter Two

Feira was just sixteen summers when a booming knock shook the door of her foster mother’s small hut.  She knew it wasn’t her foster mother, as Akahi had left just moments ago to pick berries and would not be back until evening. Feira quickly dropped the wooden spoon into the cauldron of Akahi’s special healing brew and rushed to the door.

What she saw before her nearly made her knees buckle—her beloved Tumì, draped over his brother’s shoulder, with a cracked and bloodied skull.

Tumì’s mother, Katriana stood beside her sons. She looked at Feira with keen eyes and a twisted scowl. “He calls your name, but says nothing else,” she said in a voice that was surprisingly devoid of emotion.  

“Bring him inside,” Feira beckoned. “What has happened?”

“He was struck by a palma. Foolish boy,” Katriana growled as she followed them inside. She looked around the modest room with derision in her cold eyes before plopping down on a nearby stool and helping herself to a cup of Akahi’s wine. “I told him to be careful around those heavy fruits. Now who will take care of me if he is dead?”

Feira pulled back the furs of her own small cot. “Lie him down here,” Fiera said to Tumì’s brother, while trying her best to stifle her rage at Tumì’s heartless mother.

Old cover

Old cover

Tumì’s beefy brother, Nuk, who had been born a mute, answered with a grunt. He dropped Tumì onto the cot without care and stepped back, a vacant expression in his hooded gaze. 

Feira often marveled at the differences between Tumì and his family. His mother and brother had rich, golden skin and flowing chestnut hair like many inhabitants of the nearby seaside village of Aloa-Shay. Tumì’s skin was dark, and his hair an unruly mess of black straw that he had to weave in a tight braid, else it would spring wildly from his head.

Feira leaned over Tumì and brushed her hand across his brow. His eyelids fluttered open, but his pupils had receded somewhere in the back of his skull. Sticky blood clung to his matted hair and skin. One corner of his temple had been crushed. Feira shook her head as silent tears cascaded down her face. Most likely, he’d been trying to chop down a palma pod so that he could add more coin to his greedy mother’s purse. The large palma pods that hung from tall trees could yield hundreds of small, sweet fruits. But the pods were heavy, and falling palmas had killed more than one hapless villager. Feira wondered how Tumì had managed to speak her name, or anything at all with such an injury.

CurseoftheIceDragon_webShe bit her bottom lip while stifling a sob. Tumì would die without her care, but if Feira healed him, she knew she would be marked as a witch. No mere doctoring could bring someone back from the brink of death.

Her gaze shot to Tumì’s mother, who was looking at her expectantly with that serpent cold gleam in her eyes. More than once, Katriana had accused Feira of bewitching her son. Now the cold bitch would have proof that Feira was a witch, for Feira knew she could not take another breath if her true love was gone from this world.

Feira was only glad her foster mother wasn’t here to see what she was about to do. The Elements save she and her mother, once Katriana knew the full extent of Feira’s powers.

 DOWNLOAD WITCH FLAME FOR FREE ON AMAZON, BARNES AND NOBLE AND ITUNES!

DOWNLOAD CURSE OF THE ICE DRAGON ON AMAZON, BARNES AND NOBLE AND ITUNES!


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That Boy by Jillian Dodd

292423_338429826240397_1675995336_nOnce in a while, I’ll pick up a book that is just so amazing, I feel I need to share it with my readers. Today that book is That Boy by Amazon bestselling author, Jillian Dodd.

Blurb: You know, being friends with two cute boys does have its benefits. 

There’s Danny. Danny is a golden boy in every way. He has dreamy blue eyes and blonde hair that always looks perfect, even when it’s windblown or been stuck under a football helmet. He’s the boy every girl crushes on. The boy I get into trouble with, the boy I fight with, the hot quarterback no girl can resist, not even me. Being with Danny is like being on an adventure. He has a bright, contagious smile and abs to die for. He’s pretty much irresistible.

Equally crush worthy is Phillip. Adorable, sweet Phillip, who I have known since birth.  Phillip has dark hair, a perfect smile, brown eyes, and the sexiest voice I have ever heard. He’s the boy I talk to every night before I go to sleep. The boy who rescues me, the boy who can read my mind, the boy who is always there for me, the boy who tries to keep me out of trouble, the boy who irritatingly keeps getting hotter, and whose strong arms always seem to find their way around me.  And when he gives me that grin, I can never say no.

One boy will give me my very first kiss.
One boy will teach me to make out.
One boy will take me to prom.
And finally, one boy will ask me to marry him.
They will both be my best friends.
But only one of them will be the boy I fall in love with.
Only one of them is That Boy.

I spent an entire day reading this compelling new adult novel, and That Boy is by no means short. I ignored everything, last minute Christmas shopping, groceries, exercise, even making the family dinner, because I just could not stop reading JJ’s story. I have not been so engrossed in a book in quite a long time. I clung to every word, unable to turn off my Kindle after each chapter. The narration and author voice is fast-paced and refreshing. I think any girl, any age, can relate to the protagonist and swoon over Phillip and Danny. In the end, the boy JJ chose was, in my mind, the most perfect prince of a guy. I adored him, and I just know you will adore these refreshing characters as well. Warning, there’s a heart-wrenching and explosive twist thrown right in the middle of the book, so have your tissues handy. Be prepared to laugh out loud, cry and sigh while reading. IMHO, any book that can unleash so many emotions is definitely a book worth reading.  603440_10151990500515074_763794709_nOn a side note, one more thing I just loved was that Jillian Dodd included several cute and original drawings throughout the book, just like the cover, which she designed herself.

Up next in That Boy series is That Wedding, where JJ must vanquish a lot of personal doubt and demons in order to achieve the happily-ever-after of her dreams. Another awesome book with a satisfying ending. So what are you waiting for? Download the series now!

More books by Jillian Dodd:

STALK ME – Gossip Girl meets Hollywood in this steamy new series by That Boy author, Jillian Dodd.

Keatyn has everything she ever dreamed. Her life is following the script she wrote for the perfect high school experience. She’s popular, goes to the best parties, dates the hottest guy, and sits at the most-coveted lunch table.

She’s just not sure she wants it anymore.

Because, really, things aren’t all that perfect.
Her best friend is threatening to tell everyone her perfect relationship is a scam.
Her perfect boyfriend gets drunk at every party they go to.
It’s exhausting always trying to look and act perfect.
And, deep down, she isn’t sure if she has any true friends.

To add to the drama, her movie star mom has a creepy stalker.
A hot, older man flirts with her and tells her they should make a movie together.
And she’s crushing on an adorable surfer. Dating him would mean committing social suicide.

So she writes a new script. One where all the pieces of her life will come together in perfect harmony.
But little does she know, there’s someone who will do anything to make sure that doesn’t happen.

Book two of The Keatyn Chronicles is KISS ME.

I’ve always written scripts for my perfect life.
But no way could I have ever scripted this.
My life is so far from perfect, it’s not even funny.
All because of a stalker.

I’m at a boarding school, where I have to lie about who I am.
I can’t see my family.
I’m tutoring a hottie god that tortures me with his smile.
The most popular girl already hates me.
But there’s this boy.
This hot, sweet, sexy boy.
So I’m going to stop trying to script my life and just live it.
Because who knows how long I have left.

Jillian Dodd website http://jilliandodd.net/

Jillian Dodd facebook http://www.facebook.com/jillian.dodd.3

Jilliand Dodd goodreads http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4833990.Jillian_Dodd?auto_login_attempted=true

****

393157_10151382742141303_1993283053_nOn another side note, I’d like to personally thank Jillian Dodd for helping my book, Curse of the Ice Dragon, reach two fantasy bestseller lists. Somehow, she managed to convince Amazon to feature my book, and the books of some other fabulous authors, as their Kindle Daily Deal. Just one more reason Jillian Dodd rocks!

Layout by Michelle Warren.


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Blog Hop Winners!

CurseoftheIceDragon_webCongrats to Hannah, Crystal Craig and Stephanie Andrassy for each winning a free download of either Sophie’s Secret, Don’t Tell Mother, Krsyta’s Curse or Curse of the Ice Dragon. Congrats to Jessica Crawford for winning all four downloads. The entries were creative and awesome and it was difficult choosing a winner. Thanks everyone for playing!

Please email me at tara@tarawest.com to claim your prize.

🙂 Tara


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Win one of three free downloads of Curse of the Ice Dragon or Whispers – Blog Hop Stop!

holiday-blog-hop-3aHey, there. Welcome to Tara West’s Blog Hop Stop. Thanks for stopping by. Here’s all you have to to to win one of three free downloads of my new fantasy, Curse of the Ice Dragon or one of my Whispers books. Plus, one grand prize winner will win downloads of all of my books, Whispers one through three, Witch Flame and Curse of the Ice Dragon.

In Curse of the Ice Dragon, the first book in my Keepers of the Stones fantasy saga, my hero, Markus has the gift of the mighty hunter. His arrow always strikes true.  Other magical characters that have the gift of sight, the power to heal and the ability to speak to the elements. In my paranormal Whispers Series, my teen girls have the powers to read minds, speak to the dead and tell the future. CurseoftheIceDragon_web

***If you could have one magical gift, what would it be? The most creative answer wins! Winner will be chosen December 15. ***

Thanks again for stopping by. And don’t forget to enter HERE for your chance to win a Kindle fire and for many other author giveaways!

* * *

CURSE OF THE ICE DRAGON

From the bestselling paranormal author of The Whispers Series comes a new fantasy saga.

Born with mark of the Mighty Hunter, Markus has the skill and strength to feed his people, but not to confront his own tyrannical father. Shamed by his cowardice, Markus releases his frustration on the forest creatures.

The village prophet warns that Markus’s reckless ways will bring down The Hunter’s Curse, and for every animal MarkuDon'tTell.web.jpgs kills, his loved ones will suffer the same fate. When the warnings go unheeded, the Sky Goddess unleashes her ice dragon. Now Markus must flee the dragon without killing it or his beloved brother will die.

Markus’s flight takes him to the lands of the mysterious Ice People. There, the beautiful maiden Ura helps Markus learn the compassion and courage he needs to face the wrath of the Goddess, but the final confrontation will not be without price, as Markus must choose between the life of his brother and the fate of the girl he loves.