Felicitas Ivey on Knitting, Surprises and her new story ‘I’m Not Who You Think I Am’ (author guest blog)

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I’m Not Who You Think I Am by Felicitas Ivey

Harmony Ink Press, Paperback by Dreamspinner Press
Cover Art: Tiferet Designs
Published March 19th 2019

Sales Links:   Harmony Ink Press | Barnes & Noble | Amazon

 

 

 

 

 

Whenever I start these types of posts, I spend time debating what I’m going to write. Mainly because I don’t know what to say, because I don’t know how much of my personal life I want to write about. My bio covers the basics of my life, mostly, and I don’t want to overshare on the Internet. Basically I have a day job, I have three cats, and I have hobbies.

So this is going to be about one of the hobby obsessions in my life~Fiber. Yarn and not the other kind from food. From a casual scan on Facebook and at conferences, shows that  I’m not the only author who has this obsession. Yarn and authors, go together like cats and authors.

I knit in my spare time, mostly so I don’t fall asleep the rare times I’m watching television or a movie, when my cats let me. I’m not ant television, it’s just I really don’t have time for it. Knitting’s also useful on long trips, because I’m a bad passenger on highways and it keeps me distracted. I’ve been knitting since I was in high school and have collected a lot of yarn over the decades with my hobby. Some of it was bought on an impulse, some for projects which never got knit and some of it is left over from long ago projects. Unfortunately, I’ve outgrown most of the early knitting project or they’ve fallen apart because of wear.

I’m a yarn hoarder. I have far too much of the stuff, bought in binges when I had no idea what I was going to do with it. I have my stash stored in odd containers scattered around my home, in spare rooms and underneath my sofa. I have truly embraced the notion of the person with the most yarn wins. The hoard has gotten so bad, I have a spreadsheet, broken down by fiber type, noting the location of every skein and ball. That’s about the only organized part of my life. But if I didn’t have that, I would lose track of what I have. I’m proud that I’ve even separated the storage containers by fiber also. I also really don’t have to hide my stash, because I live alone, but it does keep the cats out of it. I’m lucky to have a large enough living space to indulge in the passion I have for fiber, the wonderful color and feel of all sorts of textures of fiber, from delicate lace to a hearty bulky yarn used to make rugs and toys.

I prefer natural fiber, mainly because I’m not knitting for anyone else but myself most of the time. I’ve looked for yarn wherever I can, dragging my traveling companion off the beaten path to find yarn shops in New England and beyond. Sometimes I buy the wrong things because I didn’t bring the correct pattern book with me. Most of these types of splurges were before tablets and smart phones made looking up patterns so easy.

I’ve also collected a number of knitting books over the years also. They are a snapshot of the changing fashions in fibers and styles over the last couple of decades. Unfortunately there are a number of books which I don’t think I’m ever going to be able to use because the yarns listed no longer exist and I can’t find any information on them to figure out yardage for the sweaters. “Beastly Knits” by Lalla Ward is the one that frustrates me the most, because it has a lot of interesting sweaters in it.  I haven’t had the ambition over the years to try and figure out what I could do in the way of substitutions, since everything is given in ounces/grams and not yards. I still like the book, I mainly bought it because I am a big Dr. Who fan and the author was a companion and later a Time Lady with the fourth Doctor, Tom Baker.

My most recent project has been knitting a sweater out of Marino wool, which I’ve hand dyed on my own.  Dyeing has been something I’ve been dabbling in on and off for a couple of years. I’m lucky that I have access to stores in your area which I can buy the higher end dyes for these projects. The dye didn’t turn out the way I wanted it to, but the colors are still nice.

Dyeing is fun and I do most of my dyeing in old crock pots. They are useful for me because I do individual skeins. The main issue I have is keeping the my cats away from the pots, but a sniff or two of the dye and they wander off to nap.

I had bought the above mentioned sweater project with me on vacation, not doing a test swatch to see if I had the correct sized needles to get the right gage, so my sweater doesn’t end up fitting me. I’d skipped that once and it didn’t end well for me. Hours of work and the sweater didn’t fit me. That was one of the reasons I switched to less form fitting projects, like shawls.

I needed to get different knitting needles than what I brought with me and wandered into a Michaels and found what I needed and then discovered a wonderful sight!

It seems that Pantone the color company and Caron a yarn producer, have gotten together to package five colors together, in different shades and the yarn tag looks like a paint strip. I haven’t used the skeins I’ve bought yet, but I do have a project in mind for it. And was very proud of the fact I waited to have a project in mind, before I gave into the squees of joy I had when I first saw the yarn

Blurb

Mykayla’s parents’ marriage is in trouble, but they’re working on it. Unfortunately for Mykayla, that means she’s getting shipped off to Boston to spend her summer with Uncle Yushua while they work out their issues. Mykayla has issues of her own—like her confusion about her sexuality, or apparent lack of it—that she’d like to explore alongside her best friend, Xiu. The situation at her uncle’s house is weird to say the least. There’s something off about his coworkers—aside from the fact that they won’t go away.

Things go from strange to stranger when a supernatural being shows up to protect Mykayla from someone he calls the Shadow Pharaoh. Sutekhgen is a sorcerer who never made it to the afterlife, with a huge Seth beast as a companion… and the mistaken assumption that Mykayla is the reincarnation of his lost romantic partner.

She doesn’t know what’s worse: being caught in a metaphysical conflict between ancient gods, or being stuck with a pushy jerk who doesn’t know the meaning of personal boundaries.

About the Author

Felicitas is a frazzled help-desk tech at a university in Boston who wishes people wouldn’t argue with her when she’s troubleshooting what’s wrong with their computer. She lives with three cats who wish she would pay more attention to them, and not sit at a computer pounding on the keyboard. They get back at her by hogging most of the bed at night and demanding her attention during the rare times she watches TV or movies. She’s protected by her guardian stuffed Minotaur, Angenor, who was given to her by her other husband, Mark. Angenor travels everywhere with her, because Felicitas’s family doesn’t think she should travel by her lonesome. They worry she gets distracted and lost too easily. Felicitas doesn’t think of it a getting lost, more like having an adventure with a frustrated GPS.

Felicitas knits and hoards yarn, firmly believing the one with the most yarn wins. She also is sitting on hordes of books, which threaten to take over her house, even with e-books.

Felicitas writes urban fantasy, steampunk, and horror of a Lovecraftian nature, with monsters beyond space and time that think that humans are the tastiest things in the multiverse. Occasionally there’s a romance or two involved in her writing, with a happily-ever-after.

Website: www.Felicitasivey.com

Facebook: felicitasivey

Twitter: @felicitasive

Cover Reveal for Ties That Bind by Alex Whitehall

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Ties That Bind by Alex Whitehall
Less Than Three Press
Cover Artist: Kirby Crow

Release Date: April 23, 2019

Sales Links:  Less Than Three Press

Blurb:

For Chel, Tomlin, and Mathias, life is simple but good. They share a home and a love, and despite a few conflicts of personality, are happy. Mathias runs a magic shop, where he makes magic items and potions for his customers, and Tom is his familiar, helping supply his magic. Chel, who’s not magical, works at a bookshop and makes sure dinner is on the table for his lovers.

When Mathias suddenly comes down with a mysterious illness, Chel and Tomlin seek out answers. As Mathias’s familiar, Tomlin can sense that nothing is wrong with the magical parts of him, but when a trip to the doctor’s indicates nothing is wrong with him physically either, they start to worry.

Then Mathias collapses, and the search to find the truth becomes urgent.

 

About the Author

If there are two types of people in the world, Alex Whitehall probably isn’t one of them, despite being a person. Their favorite pastimes include reading, horseback riding, sleeping, watching geek-tastic television, knitting, eating, and running. And wasting time on the internet. And spending glorious evenings laughing with friends.

While Alex prefers sleeping over doing anything else (except maybe eating), sometimes they emerge from the cave to be social and to hunt for food at the local market. They can be found blogging, contemplating tweeting, and tending after their aloe plants.

Connect with Alex:

A MelanieM Pre-release Review: Jacked Cat Jive (The Kai Gracen #3) by Rhys Ford

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Rating: 5 stars out of 5

Stalker Kai Gracen knew his human upbringing would eventually clash with his elfin heritage, but not so soon. Between Ryder, a pain-in-his-neck Sidhe Lord coaxing him to join San Diego’s Southern Rise Court, and picking up bounties for SoCalGov, he has more than enough to deal with. With his loyalties divided between the humans who raised him and the Sidhe Lord he’s befriended and sworn to protect, Kai finds himself standing at a crossroads.

When a friend begs Kai to rescue a small group of elfin refugees fleeing the Dusk Court, he’s pulled into a dangerous mission with Ryder through San Diego’s understreets and the wilderness beyond. Things go from bad to downright treacherous when Kerrick, Ryder’s cousin, insists on joining them, staking a claim on Southern Rise and Kai.

Burdened by his painful past, Kai must stand with Ryder against Kerrick while facing down the very Court he fears and loathes. Dying while on a run is expected for a Stalker, but Kai wonders if embracing his elfin blood also means losing his heart, soul, and humanity along the way.

In a series that by turns has been dark, gritty, wondrous, and wild in the previous stories, Jacked Cat Jive has me gobsmacked with it’s , dare I say it, jacked up gloriously layered plot,  the multiple story threads running and twisting and turning each pulling your attention this way and that, while the author carefully weaves a vivid complicated tapestry that will pull them all back together into a stunning whole.

It’s a stunning series, grounded in a warped universe where dragons fly over cracked highways, elven palaces grow themselves, and the peace between humans and non is tentative at best in a world where neither quite understands the new laws of nature and reality can buckle along with the ground.

If someone would ask me what are my favorite elements, I couldn’t tell them, because there are far too many.  From the world building to the characters and the weirdly complicated, often twisted relationships.  This is a harsh landscape, not only of land but of the mind and soul.  And Rhys Ford gives us the same tortured, determined, and incredibly real beings that now inhabit it.

Kai Gracen has undergone many changes since , the first story in the series, Black Dog Blues.  He’s grown, learned more about his past, accepted responsibilities ,j and given much thought as to what his genetic pool makes him as a person.  It’s a journey of self that continues, along with his relationship with Ryder, the High Lord of the Southern Rise Court (Mad Lizard Mambo (Kai Gracen #2).  Talk about your slow burn!  They haven’t even kissed yet!  And it’s book three!

This story is so crammed full of high adventure, suspense, breathtaking hijinks and political manipulations of all sorts along with the just ol pull at your heart emotions that this author never forgets is needed as the heart that holds it all together.  It’s the perfect combination of them all and I couldn’t stop reading once I started, I think I ended somewhere around 3 am.

We are introduced to new characters even as we brace to let old ones go. Ford breaks our hearts even as she prepares us for further attachments and excitement to come.  Really this is my favorite story in the series yet.  And that is saying something.  Because this series is already full of favorites.

The writing is tight and flows like a fast moving river.  The characters are both real and fantastical, flawed and incredibly moving.   And the universe building, which continues to evolve, is absolutely stunning.

If you love urban fantasy, here is a series for you.  But they are not standalone stories but should be read in the order they are written.    Already I’m primed for the next in the series.  I can’t wait to see what’s in store for Kai, Ryder, and everyone they care for.

I highly recommend this and all the stories listed below.  Stay tuned

Cover Artist: Chris McGrath. I like the cover, Bright, colorful although not quite as edgy nor my idea of Kai.

Sales Links:  DSP Publications | Amazon

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 253 pages
Expected publication: March 5th 2019 by DSP Publications
ASIN B07L8LZSLK
Edition Language English
Series Kai Gracen #3

Mad Lizard Bites(.05)

Black Dog Blues

Mad Lizard Mambo

Jacked Cat Jive

A Free Dreamer Review: Incubus Honeymoon (Arcana Imperii #1) by August Li

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

As the so-called magical creatures go, I’m low on the hierarchy, and my powers aren’t much good to human mages. I’m a lover, not a fighter, through and through. I’m also selfish, lazy, and easily bored. But I’m damned good at what I do.

Too bad that won’t get my arse out of this sling.

Do one—granted, uncharacteristic—good deed, and now I’m held hostage to an arrogant faerie prince, trying to track down the one who summoned him while dodging gangbangers, gun runners, and Nazis. Add the powerful mage guilds scrambling to gather firepower for some doomsday event they’re sure is around the corner, and my cushy life of leisure might be nothing but a memory. On top of that, something’s compelling me to change on my most fundamental level. I’m not sure what I’ve got myself mixed up in, but nothing will ever be the same.

Bloody hell.

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Featuring a new twist on urban fantasy combined with fast-paced action and intrigue, the Arcana Imperii series books are standalone adventures, each completely accessible to new readers.

I probably wouldn’t have picked up “Incubus Honeymoon” if it hadn’t been published by DSP. The title kind of leads you to expect lots of sex and not much of a plot. But since this is a DSP title, I knew there would be mostly plot and little to no romance in it. And that’s exactly what I got. This is, first and foremost, a fantasy novel that also has some elements of romance and sex in it.

The blurb promises “a new twist on urban fantasy”. That’s almost an understatement, if you ask me. While the elements the story is made up of aren’t exactly new, the combination of said elements was what made this book truly unique.

We have three very different protagonists in this story. Blossom is your typical Fey of the old stories: a ruthless bastards who only ever does what suits him best. Then there’s Dante, a normal human who knows nothing about magic but who’d do everything to keep his little sister safe and happy. And finally we have Inky, an incubus and the only one of the trio who has something resembling a human conscience. I don’t think I actually liked either Blossom or Dante, but that was fine. I definitely understood Dante’s motivations and Blossom is Fey and Fey are always jerks.

The plot itself is truly breathtaking. There’s so much action and drama and so many hidden layers, it was really hard to put the book down. This is an urban fantasy setting and the author does a brilliant job of combining the fantasy elements with current events. Climate change, Trump, terrorism and nationalism were cleverly interwoven with the magic of the story. That’s one of the things that really stood out to me and me absolutely love this book.

As I’ve mentioned above, there really isn’t much of a romance to be found. There’s an established couple that becomes quite important but their love is not a main focus at any time. There are a few semi-explicit sex scenes and a few more off-screen, which makes sense, considering Inky is an incubus. But again, the sex was not a focus point.

Oh, and there were cats. I love cats and well-written cat characters are always a huge bonus for me.

This was shaping up to be a 5-star-read for me. But there were just too many POVs throughout the story. Sometimes it actually got a little confusing because of that. Ultimately, that’s the thing that made me knock off half a star.

“Incubus Honeymoon” is the first part of a new series by this author and it shows. While the story doesn’t end on a cliffhanger, the plot quite clearly isn’t fully resolved. And I’m really looking forward to what happens next.

I can’t believe this is my first book by August Li. He’s obviously a brilliant author and I’ll need to check out his other works.

I think this book will appeal to all fans of urban fantasy. It’s definitely an interesting new twist on well-known fantasy elements. Read it, I’m sure you’ll like it.

The cover by Blake Dorner is perfect. Inky looks exactly like I’d imagined him and he has his super cute cat with him.

Sales Links:  DSP Publications | Amazon

Book details:

ebook, 274 pages

Published July 17th 2018 by DSP Publications