Thursday, September 26, 2013

Fighting Destiny by Brittany Booker

So, if you're sensing a giveaway theme here on The Hook of late, you're not mistaken. We've been lucky enough to have some fabulous authors donate their books and gift cards to all of you fortunate followers. Our latest guest is literary agent/writer Brittany Booker (also known as LJ.) You may recall the interview we did with Brittany and her partner Jordy Albert of Booker Albert Literary.  Don't sweat if you missed it. Check the archives here to read it! Brittany's New Adult Paranormal Romance- FIGHTING DESTINY - had just been released in paperback and to celebrate we're sharing an excerpt here AND Brittany is offering a couple of awesome prizes - a paperback copy of this awesome book AND a $10.00 Amazon e gift card!

After you read this, I promise you're going to want to read more! Excerpt from FIGHTING DESTINY:

“Hey,” I heard half way toward my dorm. “Codi, come here.” Aiden stumbled out of the house, throwing down a red empty cup. He spotted me and had started to run, making me run faster. I dug my feet into the pavement, they screamed in pain when I would hit random rocks. I didn’t know if Aiden would do anything other than hang on me, but I sure as hell didn’t want to wait and find out.
    “Codi,” Aiden said, grabbing my wrist and slinging me around to face him. His green eyes wide, his mouth close to my face. “I need to talk to you.” He didn’t seem as drunk, but he was still swaying a bit.
    “Sober up and then we’ll talk, okay?” I tried to turn but he gripped my wrist tighter. “Aiden let go of my hand, okay? I want to go to my dorm. “
    “I knew your brother,” he blurted out, his words loud and foreign.
    My heart stopped mid-beat. I glanced up at him, my eyes wide. “What did you just say?”
    “I can’t tell you much but I--,”
    I slammed my right wrist against his chest. “Shut the fuck up! Don’t you dare try and say you knew my brother. You would have been a child when he died! Don’t talk about him!” I screamed. My voice was shaking, my body raging.
    Aiden gripped my shoulders, trying to steady me. “I knew of him, Codi. You don’t understand. Let me explain it to you---,”
    “No!” I yelled, slamming my heels that were in my hand against his chest. He grunted stepping back.
    “Calm down, bitch!” he said, making my anger double in my veins.  He reached out trying to restrain me, but when I went to hit him he wasn’t in my reach. Someone was standing beside Aiden, through my teary eyes I saw Aiden’s head pop back twice, and then he fell to the ground.
Shaking, I squinted my eyes, trying to get a good look at the shadow in front of me. “Are you okay?” His voice was calm and steady.
    He stepped forward, the street light hitting his face just right. His brows were furrowed, a worry line wrinkling his forehead. Blinking his big grey eyes twice, he parted his full lips and said again, “Are you--,”
    “I’m fine,” I said, shaking my head, looking at Aiden rolling on the ground holding his nose.
    “Fuccckkk, stupid bitch,” Aiden grumbled into his hand.
    “Did he hurt you?” Grey Eyes said. I shook my head, watching him look down at Aiden. He clenched his jaw then scratched the back of his neck. “Do you need help?”
    “I can take care of myself,” I blurted out.
     Grey Eyes glanced down at me, tilting his head to the side. “Really, now? Because it looked like you were trying to get little guy off you and couldn’t manage that.”
    I snorted. “Well, shows how much you know because that’s not what happened at all.”
He smirked and looked off to hide his laugh. I took this chance to give him the once over. He was tall, really tall. His black hair was in a messy mop on top of his head, he had a lot of scruff going on and he smelled like rain.
    “See something you like?” he asked.
    Heat swarmed my cheeks. “No!” That made him smile. “What are we gonna do about him?” I asked, watching Aiden try and get up twice.
    “I’ll take care of him. You get inside your dorm and lock the door. You’re bruised, are you sure you’re okay?” He stepped forward, his calloused hand touching my arm.
    I shivered. “Yeah,” I mumbled, stepping back. “I’ll—thank you,” I said, reaching up and grabbing my brother’s necklace.
    Grey Eyes looked down at my necklace then back up at me. His face serious, and calm.         “You’re welcome. You need to get inside, okay? Go get some rest.”
    I nodded, stumbling backwards toward the dorm. When I looked over my shoulder, Grey Eyes had Aiden over his shoulder, with Aiden cussing the entire time.
WOW! Thank you, Brittany for sharing this juicy scene with us!! Please don't leave without entering the Rafflecopter below (see more) for your chance to win! Congrats to Brittany and may her book be a best seller :)

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Nebraska Brown Trailer Party Premier

The next big thing to hit the small screen is here! No, not Jaws the 15th. No, not Carrie Underwood as Maria Von Trapp, though that IS pretty big.

I'm super pleased to bring you the debut of The Making of Nebraska Brown's Official Book Trailer! And were celebrating with a contest, of course!

Watch, and enjoy. And then, enter the Rafflecopter below (see more) for your chance to win a $10.00 Amazon e-gift card :)


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Stuck in a Good Book Hop

I'm especially excited with this giveaway hop since we get to highlight a book that was so amazing we just couldn't put it down. This was an easy choice for me! We at The Hook are celebrating Rebecca Hamilton's phenomenal hit: THE FOREVER GIRL. Here's the synopsis:
Sophia's family has skeletons, but they aren't in their graves.
 At twenty-two, practicing Wiccan Sophia Parsons is scratching out a living waiting tables in her Rocky Mountain hometown, a pariah after a string of unsolved murders with only one thing in common: her.
 Sophia can imagine lots of ways to improve her life, but she'd settle for just getting rid of the buzzing noise in her head. When the spell she casts goes wrong, the static turns into voices. Her personal demons get company, and the newcomers are dangerous.
 One of them is a man named Charles, who Sophia falls for despite her better judgment. He has connections that might help her unveil the mystery surrounding her ancestor's hanging, but she gets more than she bargains for when she finally decides to trust him.
 Survival in his world, she learns, means not asking questions and staying out of the immortal council's way. It's a line she crossed long ago. If Sophia wants to survive the council and save the people she loves, she must accept who she is, perform dark magic, and fight to the death for her freedom.

The Forever Girl is a full-length Paranormal Fantasy novel that will appeal to lovers of paranormal romance, urban fantasy, witches, vampire fiction, ghost stories, paranormal mystery, and paranormal horror.
"This is a great book. A MUST read!" ~ Brian Witten of WITTEN PICTURES, producer of American History X, Wedding Singer, Final Destination, Friday the 13th, Chernobyl Diaries, and soon, Stephen King's CELL with John Cusack.
"I was really drawn in by the writing from the first instance. The voice is clear and easy-to-read; it’s rare to see such natural flow and tempo from a debut author." ~ HarperCollins
“The Forever Girl” is an enticing read of Wiccan fiction, very much recommended reading.” ~Carl Logan of MIDWEST BOOK REVIEW
This smartly written, expertly paced, thrill-ride captivated me from the first page. And for those of us who are craving more - well, we won't be craving long. This is part of a series by the same name! Please visit Rebecca's website above for the exciting details.

I'm super happy that my upcoming novel, THE MAKING OF NEBRASKA BROWN is also being released by Immortal Ink Publishing, the same press that brought THE FOREVER GIRL series to its loyal readership! Rebecca has kindly donated 3 eBooks for our hop giveaway. Just enter the Rafflecopter below (see more.) In addition you could win a $10.00 Amazon e gift card by entering the Trailer Release Party below. So many chances to win in one place :)

Thanks to Stuck In Books for bringing this hop to life! Be sure to keep on hopping!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

A Skyline To Remember

As a New Yorker, born and raised, I saw it so many times. That gorgeous skyline, especially pretty at night, all lit up and shining with hometown pride. If only for today I want to pretend none of the madness ever happened. I want to make believe monsters only exist in Stephen King novels. I want to forget we have enemies who hate us simply because we aren't them.
As a New Yorker who watched a horror unfold, too close for comfort, I want to offer a kind word to those people whose lives were forever altered by monsters and madmen, by hatred and plots far more sinister than any story ever written.
Twelve years ago I lost a skyline. So many here lost a hell of a lot more.
We will go on. We will be stronger for the pain. But we will never forget.
God Bless the USA.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Immortal Ink Publishing Pitchfest

Immortal Ink PITCHFEST is here!
Sept. 14th, 15th and 16th
at the IIP Facebook Page
Be concise: 150 words or less. Be sure: to include your Facebook contact info. Be dazzling: Make us simply HAVE to request more.
Don’t forget to LIKE us while you’re there. Tell a friend. Tell the world.

Do you have a story you think would be perfect for Immortal Ink Publishing? Here's your chance to query. Mark your calendars for this coming Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, and dust off those queries until they shine! Follow the link above to the IIP Facebook page and we'll see you there!


Saturday, September 7, 2013

Bottled Time - The Art of Being Remembered

We here at Hook Central have been undergoing some outdoor construction. Our old patio has recently been excavated and a new one formed in its place. I kept wondering if there would be any exciting treasures discovered in the process - not like gold or diamonds or cash - though that wouldn't have been such a bad thing - but more in the way of an artifact from days gone by. Yet all we found was a dirty old comb. Excitement level - 0.

So I thought, here's my chance to leave my mark. Now, I'm hopeful that the books I've written will act as a placeholder for my life long after I'm gone. Yet, I imagined how cool it would be to have someone, the next person to own our house maybe 100 years from now, decide to tear down the gorgeous new steps we just had built, and discover a note rolled up neatly inside a bottle.

 In case you're's what it said:

I don’t suppose I’ll ever know if this note goes on to be unearthed and subsequently read. A voice buried deep within a cocktail of concrete and dirt isn’t one destined to be heard. Yet I’d be remiss, at this moment in time, if I didn’t seize the opportunity, and etch out some small fraction of tangible posterity. In the long run it may not make a difference one way or another, but it’s something inherently human, to want to be remembered, isn’t it?
The steps surrounding this letter were built in August of 2013, along with this patio, for the sake of our family being able to further enjoy the gorgeous backyard view you’ve by now come to appreciate. In case you’re curious as to what a project like this goes for these days, I’ve written the cost on the reverse side of this page. Warning: you may prefer to be seated while reading that one. I know my boyfriend did.  Yes, it’s a pretty penny indeed. (Nobody actually still uses that expression, so I’m not sure why I put it that way.) Phrases change. Vernacular is reshaped with each generation and before you know it you have an entirely new language to learn. I imagine by now technology has brought its fair share of changes too. The way you get from point A to B is different I’m certain, as is the onslaught of entertainment options. Know this: Jaws and The Sound of Music are still two of the best movies ever made. That may be considered a matter of opinion, I know. Believe me, as a writer I am intimately familiar with the definition of subjectivity (see also: rejection.) The reality of life right now is that the internet and cell phones have altered the way we communicate. They have expanded our universe and shortened our attention span. The art of conversation has morphed into a virtual type-fest and is often limited to 140 characters (research Twitter for a broader explanation of this one.)
However, the greater issues have and I suspect will always remain the same. Love is still vastly popular and most often misunderstood. Health and Happiness have retained their spot as two of the most sought-after states, followed closely by Hope. Family Relations are ever grounded in equal parts comfort and complication. Some things, I guess, are impervious to the revisions of life.
Speaking of family, my plan is that ours - those of us who inhabit this home right now, will come and go from these steps a million times over. My wish is that we’ll be here long enough to see our grandbabies climb them and hover close to be careful they don’t fall.
When the day comes that we’ve moved on, somebody will know that we were here, and that we loved this house.
And with any luck, for whatever its worth we will be remembered.

That, my friends, is how we bottle time, here at Hook Central.

 Louise Caiola writes YA and NA contemporary fiction, mystery, romance and drama. Be sure to visit her website:

Monday, September 2, 2013

Booker Albert Literary is Here!

It’s my great pleasure to welcome the lovely ladies of Booker Albert Literary Agency to The Hook today. Agents Brittany Booker and Jordy Albert, formerly of Marisa Corvisiero Literary, combined forces to bring this awesome agency to life back in December 2012, and since that time have signed a terrific gathering of authors and an impressive sales list. . They are currently open to submissions and would love to hear from you. I’m super-excited to be interning with these girls and their other fabulous interns, Sam Farkas and Caitlin Hemphill, and look forward to many great things ahead for this team.
That said, let’s begin by telling us if there is any agency news you both are particularly thrilled about? (Upcoming releases, new clients, etc.)

Brittany  - This is a very hard question for me, because I feel all thirteen of my clients are amazing and have had accomplishments this year. Cassie Mae’s Friday Night Alibi recently released from Random House on July 29th, and she also has Pulling The Switch, and How To Date A Nerd coming out this year from Random House and Swoon Romance. Theresa Paolo’s (Never) Again is releasing from Berkley in October. I can’t leave out Melissa Giorgio whose novel The Sight Seer is climbing the chart on Amazon. We’ll be announcing another big deal soon, just waiting on the go-ahead e-mail. I’d also like to say that I’m just thrilled to have the amazing clients that I do have with me. 
Jordy - We are excited about Jayne Denker’s book Down on Love coming out on November 21, 2013!
That sounds fantastic! As the literary landscape is constantly changing, are there any noteworthy market trends you notice that could prove to be relevant?
Brittany - Well, I would definitely say that New Adult books have become very trendy as of lately. My last few deals have been NA books, so I think any genre NA has a great chance of selling, or landing an agent.
Jordy  - NA is definitely strong right now; contemporary especially.
To each of you: Fill in the blank: “If I see one more manuscript starring a seventeen-year-old paranormal badass witch/ghost/vampire hunter_, I’ll run screaming from the room.”

Jordy - Totally agree! I would also say characters that have had a terrible home life.
And while we’re on the topic, what would you say is the most common Query glitch you come across?

Brittany - I would say just not reading the guidelines. It’s a very simple process to follow them and it helps us out in the reading. Also, when authors pitch to more than one agent at a time, it’s not a great way to start your pitching process.
Jordy - Agree with Brittany! However, one of the oddest glitches I’ve come across is a query with no name. It’s happened more than once.
On the other hand, what does your dream list look like?
Jordy: YA/NA (sci-fi/fantasy, contemporary)...especially with a strong romantic element. But mainly I’d love to see great chemistry between characters.
Brittany: My dream list consists of any genre NA, YA Contemporary with a male perspective, and YA multicultural. 
What element makes a submission stand out most in your mind? Plot, voice, pacing, prose? Or some combination of each?
Brittany - I would say for me, I like to see a little bit of the voice in a query. Having the plot written nicely into the query, without bombarding the query, is always refreshing. However, I like for the author’s voice to be portrayed in the query, so I see a little bit before I request a partial.
Jordy - Voice. Definitely voice. Something in the sample pages just has to click.
Is there any advice you can offer to writers facing the unfortunate, yet unavoidable sting of rejection?
Brittany - My advice is pretty generic. Never give up and be patient. There are so many agents and editors to look at your work. Most likely, you’ll get plenty of rejections, but it only takes one yes for you to move forward.

Jordy - Keep writing!
Finally, what do you consider to be your favorite book of all time?
Brittany - This is the hardest question out of all of them. I would probably say The Fault In Our Stars by John Green. I recommend everyone to read this.

Jordy: Hmmm this is reeeeally difficult! I loved To Kill A Mockingbird. One of my most favorite recent reads is Poison Princess by Kresley Cole.

Wow! What a terrific interview! To thank all the readers for coming by Jordy and Brittany have provided the chance for you to win two awesome prizes! Be sure to take a moment to check the Rafflecopter below (READ MORE) for your chance to win! Also "like"the BA Team on Facebook at
It’s been awesome having the ladies here. Stay tuned for more wonderful things to come from Booker Albert Literary Agency.