Coming Soon: Alone

alone


A Zombie Novel
Coming March 29, 2016


Two years after the zombie virus has wiped out most of the population, eighteen-year-old Jules is trying to adjust to the world she now finds herself in. When her father relocates them to a settlement in South Carolina, Jules is afraid she’s going to miss Washington DC, the only home she’s ever known. But Hilton Head has its benefits, namely Roman. Their attraction is instantaneous, but as more and more hurdles are thrown their way, the two begin to consider the idea of leaving for one of the unsanctioned settlements.

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When We Were Human by Kate L. Mary

When We Were Human

by Kate L. Mary

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Shattered World is Live!

Shattered World
(#2, Broken World series)

by Kate L. Mary

Post-Apocalyptic/Zombie Series

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synopsis
***Warning: Contains Spoilers for Broken World***

Stranded in the middle of the Mojave Desert, surrounded by zombies, Vivian and Axl are sure they’re facing the end. The dead are closing in and the shelter they were promised is sealed tight. Just when they think they’ve run out of time, the doors are thrown open. Five years underground with all the provisions there for the taking. It’s almost too good to be true. With the promise of security, Vivian hopes she’ll finally able to deal with the loss of Emily, her growing feelings for Axl, and the terrifying new world they’re facing.

But their sense of security is soon shattered when they discover the shelter isn’t the utopia they thought it would be. It seems the company that built the shelter decided to solve their financial problems by selling off provisions, which means the group has to find a way to get supplies. Or face starvation.

And Vegas is the closest city.

With her feelings for Axl stronger than ever, Vivian volunteers to accompany him and a few others on a trip into one of the biggest tourist cities in the world. Vegas is overrun with the dead, but there are other survivors as well. Only not everyone they meet is a welcome sight. As the emotional baggage piles up, Vivian and Axl’s bond grows stronger, but it doesn’t take long to realize that zombies aren’t the only thing they have to fear.

Excerpt

“Here goes nothin’,” Axl says, echoing my thoughts.

He leans down and fools with the wires under the steering wheel. The dead bang against the car, but even more have surrounded the sedan. I dig my nails into my legs while I wait for Axl to do whatever he has planned. He grunts, and a few sparks fly. My entire body jerks when the deafening sound of the alarm rings through the car.

The world around us explodes. The bodies go crazy and converge on the car, banging on it with their hands, their bodies, their faces. They leave thick smears of black on the windows as they desperately try to get in. The door handle rattles, and some even climb on top of the car.

They’re wild and frantic. It’s so terrifying that for a moment I can’t remember exactly why we decided to do this. My heart pounds and I cover my ears, trying to block out the sounds of the hammering and the alarm. Trying to keep the terror at bay. All I want to do is run, but there’s nowhere to go. The realization that we’re stuck hits me so hard I start to shake.

Then the sedan drives off. It turns the corner with the truck close behind it, and I relax just a little. They’re going to make it. Nathan and his wife, their daughter. Two other little boys who have years ahead of them. Trey can get back to Parvarti and Winston to his daughter. They will have food and safety. That’s why we chose to commit suicide in this horrifying way.

Axl pries my hands away from my ears and pulls me against his chest. He wraps his arms around me as the pounding continues. He doesn’t say anything, and neither do I. All I can do is watch silently as the truck pulls out of sight.

After a few minutes, he turns the alarm off, but the damage is already done. They know we’re in here, and they won’t give up until they’ve broken in. A crack starts at the corner of the windshield and travels across. Then another. A dead man hurls himself against the glass and pounds his fists. Hundreds of cracks fan out across the windshield in a frightening web pattern, and I have to stifle the urge to scream. It’s safety glass, so it doesn’t give. At least not yet.

“I won’t let them get us.” Axl’s lips brush against my head, and strands of hair fall into my face. They tickle my nose, but I can’t find the motivation to move them aside.

I nod and swallow against the lump in my throat. He doesn’t mean he won’t let them get in, because we both know there’s nothing we can do about that now. Surprisingly though, I’m okay with it. A bullet to the brain sounds a lot better than being ripped apart by the undead.

Author

Kate L. Mary is a stay-at-home mother of four and an Air Force wife. She spent most of her life in a small town just north of imageDayton, Ohio where she and her husband met at the age of twelve. Since their marriage in 2002, they have lived in Georgia, Mississippi, South Carolina, and California.

Kate enjoys any post-apocalyptic story – especially if zombies are involved – as long as there is a romantic twist to give the story hope. Kate prefers nerdy, non-traditional heroes that can make you laugh to hunky pieces of man-meat, and her love of wine and chocolate is legendary among her friends and family. She currently resides in Oklahoma with her husband and children.

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When a deadly virus sweeps the country, Vivian Thomas sets out for California in hopes of seeing the daughter she gave up for adoption. Then her car breaks down and she’s faced with a choice. Give up, or accept a ride from redneck brothers, Angus and Axl. Vivian knows the offer has more to do with her double D’sBrokenWorldCover than kindness, but she’s prepared to do whatever it takes to reach her daughter.

The virus is spreading, and by the time the group makes it to California, most of the population has been wiped out. When the dead start coming back, Vivian and the others realize that no electricity or running water are the least of their concerns. Now Vivian has to figure out how to be a mother under the most frightening circumstances, cope with Angus’s aggressive mood swings, and sort out her growing attraction to his brooding younger brother, Axl.

While searching for a safe place to go, they pick up a pompous billionaire who may be the answer to all their problems. Trusting him means going into the middle of the Mojave Desert and possibly risking their lives, but with the streets overrun and nowhere else to turn, it seems he might be their only chance for survival.

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Broken World and The Walking Dead

I’ve had several reviewers point out the similarities between Broken World and The Walking Dead, and I finally decided to say something about it.

Before I published Broken World, I was pretty sure reviewers were going to rip me apart over the similarities. I’ll be honest though, I didn’t expect it to do as well as it has. Not because I don’t think it’s good, because I do. I love it. But because I’d spent months reading agents and editors flat-out say that there’s no market for zombie novels. Um…really? I disagreed before, and I do even more now. Why? Because people like me who love zombies, loved them before TWD came around and will continue to love them after the show ends. And now especially there’s a big market for zombie fiction. TWD is huge. Anyone who picks up a zombie book these days is most definitely going to be a fan of the show, so I would be an idiot to say I wasn’t inspired by TWD. I’ve gotten lucky though, and most readers love Broken World because of the similarities. Which is totally awesome! However, after reading some of the comparisons reviewers have made, I wanted to reveal exactly what my motivation was behind writing it, and exactly where I was inspired.

The biggest thing people have pointed out is the Daryl/Merle and Axl/Angus similarities. So here’s the big question: are Axl and Angus supposed to be Daryl and Merle? No. They are Axl and Angus. Are they inspired by the brothers? Absolutely. I’ve never denied it. Why? Because I’d be a moron to try and convince anyone they weren’t. So why did I do it? It’s simple: I’m a huge fan of the show, and a huge fan of Robert Kirkman. Plus, Daryl is an amazing character, and so was his brother. I love characters with lots of baggage! There’s so much room for growth and change, as we saw with Daryl, and I was so excited by the idea of throwing Merle into the bunch and seeing what would happen. How Daryl would stand up under pressure. How Merle would fit into this group. It had so much potential that was never explored because of Merle’s untimely death. Of course, by the time Merle died I had already written two books. When I wrote them, Merle and Daryl had never been in a single episode together (with the exception of the one episode where Daryl hallucinates). I finished the third book shortly after season three ended, but it was outlined well before that. So yes, the brothers in my book are inspired by the brothers in TWD, but a lot of the similarities are coincidence, because I had already written the books before I ever saw the two of them interact.

Now, what about the Emily/Sophia thing? I’ll be totally honest, when I wrote Emily I didn’t have a single thought about TWD. I started writing Broken World with totally different intentions. Different plot, different character interactions. No zombies. But by the end of the first chapter I had changed my mind. I wanted to write a zombie novel, so I decided to. I came up with Emily’s character because I needed a reason to get Vivian across country that was different and stood out, and would show a soft side that contrasted with the fake exterior she had created for herself. I wanted to make her sympathetic and human. A few people have said she was a bad mom, and if that’s your opinion then that’s fine. I’m okay with it. Like I said, I like flaws in my characters. I didn’t write her to be a bad mom, I wrote her to be a human being who makes mistakes. Sometimes those mistakes have horrible consequences. Another person said that Emily was killed off because she was “an inconvenience to the romance plot.” Quite frankly, that’s bullshit. Axl and Vivian bonded even more over Emily, and if she had lived it would have been the same. I didn’t intend to kill Emily off. She was going to live. The problem came when I was about halfway through the first book and started outlining the second and third books. I had Vivian running off all the time to get supplies, and it made no sense for her to do that if she had a child. If people thought she was a bad mom before, they would have hated her then! In order to keep the story going—which is told from Vivian’s perspective—I had kill Emily off. I wasn’t thinking about Sophia at all when I did it. Can I see the similarity? Yup.

One reviewer compared Winston and Tyreese, which is also a coincidence (and kind of racist). They’re two black guys, but that’s about all they have in common. When I wrote Broken World, Tyreese wasn’t even in the show, so I had no idea who he was. I didn’t start reading the comics until this last year, either. To be honest, I kind of dislike Tyreese (especially in the show). Winston is my voice of reason in the group. If he’s like anyone, he’s Dale or Hershel (show, not comic), although I didn’t mirror his character after anyone in TWD. Sorry, but that’s a total coincidence.

Glen and Al? Nope, sorry again. A reviewer compared the two characters because they are both Asian and slightly geeky. I never found Glen to be geeky. Insecure and quiet, a follower. Yeah. Geeky…I’m not sure what about his personality seemed geeky to the reviewer, but I didn’t get it. Al was a kid I threw in because I wanted a geeky zombie enthusiast in there, and I made him Asian because I like diversity in my stories. The end.

This one really made me roll my eyes: Joshua and Hershel. Really? Hershel is a vet and a farmer in his sixties. Joshua is a twenty-seven-year-old doctor who’s six feet seven inches tall. They’re similar because they both have medical training, I guess? Nope. Joshua is there because I wanted a doctor in my group. It will help them get further and survive longer realistically. There’s nothing worse than reading a book and having people with no medical knowledge perform surgery. Successfully.

Vivian apparently is a mix between Lori, Carol and Andrea? That’s just weird. I can grab any three characters, smash them together and pull one bit from their personalities to compare them to a fourth. It doesn’t mean anything. Vivian is nothing like Lori. For real? Ugh. No way! And Andrea…nope. Never really cared for Andrea all that much, and they have almost nothing in common other than blonde hair (and neither one can cook, which is really grasping at straws). Carol…I won’t deny similarities, but they have nothing to do with Emily. More the abusive/damaged background than anything else. But again, I just really love those damaged characters!

As you read further in the books, you may find a thing here or there that actually DID happen in an episode of TWD. They are intentional! There are a lot of zombie stories out there where the characters have never seen a zombie movie and have no clue what’s going on. Not mine. They’ve all seen zombie stuff, Al is a big fan even. So, it just made since for someone to say, “Hey! I saw this in a zombie movie I love, let’s see if it works!” Not all the stuff I’m going to use will be from TWD, though. Some may be taken from other zombie books I’ve read. But I am going to use the resources out there, because when the zombie apocalypse happens for real, you know we’ll all be pulling out the DVDs of TWD and watching it for tips on how to survive!

So, if you’re reading one of the books in the Broken World series and something reminds you of TWD, just ask me! I’ll be honest. You can send me an email or comment on my Facebook Page, or ask a question on my Goodreads Page. You can even comment on this post, I always respond to the people who leave comments. (Except spammers. You make me sad.) I’ve gotten a couple awesome emails and comments from readers, and I’m going to be honest, they make my day! I really love these book and loved writing them, and I’m thrilled that they’re doing so well!

Thanks everyone for your support!

~Kate L. Mary~

Cover Reveal for Wanting Forever by Diana Gardin

Wanting Forever

by Diana Gardin

New Adult Contemporary Romance

Coming October 7, 2014

From Grand Central Publishing

Wanting Forever Cover_edited

Grand Central Publishing Art Team
Cover reveal organized by Literati Author Services, Inc.

 

Synopsis

Sometimes the one thing you want is exactly what you can’t have.



For Sam Waters, it’s Aston Hopewell. Talk about a girl out of his league. But he’s just a hired hand, happy to keep his head down and work hard on her father’s ranch. With a warrant out for his arrest, he can’t afford trouble.

Everyone thinks Aston’s life is perfect, but she knows the truth: nothing is as it seems. The only one who gets that is Sam. He understands her in a way no one ever has. But even he won’t tell her everything-until the night that changes their destiny forever . . .

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About the Author

Diana Gardin was born and raised combing the coasts of Southeastern Virginia. She is now a happy Dianaresident of South Carolina as she married into an enormous Carolina-rooted family. She loves the beach, and even more than that she loves to read while sitting on the beach.

While writing was always a passion of Diana’s, she enrolled in college to become an elementary-school teacher.After eight years of teaching in both Virginia and South Carolina, she decided to stay at home with her first child. This decision is what opened her eyes to the fact that she still very much loved to write, and her first novel was written.

Diana is also the author of the Young Adult novel COLOR BLIND and the New Adult series the Ashes series.

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