MONSTER MASH COUNTDOWN BLITZ, DAY 8, FEATURING AUTHOR ANN SWANN @ann_swann @LovingtheBook

 

Ann Swann was born in the small West Texas town of Lamesa. She grew up much like Stevie-girl in The Phantoms series, though she never got up the nerve to enter the haunted house.

Ann has done everything from answering 911 Emergency calls to teaching elementary school. She lives in Texas with her husband, Dude, a rescue cat named Oscar, and a part-time box turtle named Piggy.

When she’s not writing, Ann is reading. Her to-be-read list has grown so large it has taken on a life of its own. She calls it Herman.

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Stutter Creek (book one) is a romance, brilliantly hidden within a suspense-filled tale of a psychotic serial killer with a chip on his shoulder. It is also a classic tale of young love lost, and a life of regrettable what-ifs.

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SNIPPET 1

Slowly, she raised her face. The top of her head barely grazed his shoulder. She had to stand on her tip-toes even though he was leaning down—then their lips met, and the brilliant rays of sunlight falling through the pines illuminated his face like that of a saint in a stained-glass window. “Saint John,” she laughed.

He laughed with her.

 

SNIPPET 2

He looked up from unloading his truck just as Turk came crashing through the underbrush. The huge Shepherd was so excited to see his master that he stood straight up and placed his giant paws on John’s chest. On anyone else, the paws would have landed on shoulders, but John Stockton stood six feet four inches tall in his stocking feet. With his lug-soled boots on, he was easily six and a half feet.

 

 

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Monster Mash Book Blitz Countdown Event Day 2 – The Phantom Trilogy

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Ann lives in Texas with her husband and rescue pets. She taught reading and other subjects for a number of years before leaving to devote more time to her first love—writing. Reading with children was always her favorite part of teaching.

Cool Well Press published her ghostly series for the young at heart, Stevie-girl and the Phantom Pilot, Stevie-girl and The Phantom Student, and Stevie-girl and The Phantom of Crybaby Bridge.

Her adult novels—All For Love, women’s fiction, and the suspense trilogy Stutter Creek, Lilac Lane, and Copper Lake, are all published by 5 Prince Publishing.

Takers, Ann’s foray into speculative fiction, was released earlier this year.

She has won several awards for fiction since her college days and has had short stories and essays published in Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine, The Binnacle, Timeless, an anthology, Seasonal Sweet, and Suspenseful, an anthology, Jitter Press, Fictionterrifica, The Rusty Nail, The Sandstorm, Reflections, an anthology, and Blue Mountain Review.

Q&A With the Author

Please, tell me a story. It can be long or short. From your childhood or last week. Funny, sad, or somewhere in between. Just make sure it’s yours. What’s your story?

Once upon a time, I went on a date with a firefighter. “I want to show you one of my favorite places,” he said. And then he took the doors off his sparkly green Jeep and drove us to a caliche pit outside town where we raced up and down the hills catching air beneath our axles like crazed fools. When we came upon an abandoned farmhouse at the top of a rise, we dared each other to go inside. Together we climbed in through a broken window illuminated by a pearly moon.

Dust covered every surface and drifted up in the corners like small, red dunes. We’d barely crossed the large room when we heard the chilling sound of a dog pack barking and baying as if on the hunt. We stopped in our tracks and looked at each other across the dim expanse. Where were they? Were they close? Inside the empty house, it was hard to tell. The sounds bounced from wall to wall.

Without a word we turned and hightailed it back out the window—snagging my favorite sweater on a nail—and ran to the Jeep just as the dogs materialized out of the gloom. The pack leader appeared to be a Doberman followed closely by some sort of Collie mix. I saw two or three others, but couldn’t make out their breeds. My heart leapt into my throat. I really wished he hadn’t removed the doors. Even inside, I didn’t feel safe.

He shoved the Jeep in gear and stomped on the gas. The big tires bit into the earth and threw up a huge red rooster tail of dirt. We roared down one hill and halfway up another before we lost traction and began to slide. I thought we were going to tumble backward, end over end, but then he gunned the motor and twisted the wheel and the slide was halted. In seconds we’d made it back to level earth, leaving the barking behind.

It’s a wonder I ever went out with that fireman again, but thirty-seven years ago, I married him. It’s been an adventure ever since.

Connect with the Author here:

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Book 1 – Stevie Girl and the Phantom Pilot

When a small planes crashes behind Jase’s rural home, strange things begin to happen. But no one believes him. After all, there’s no such thing as a ghost, right? Then he sees his pretty, quiet schoolmate, Stevie-girl, about to enter the legendary haunted house, and he knows if anyone can help him solve the mystery, she’s the one.

Book 2 – Stevie Girl and the Phantom Student

Stevie asks Jase to help her find out why the ghost of a girl keeps appearing in her mirror. They think it has something to do with the new student at their school, a boy who has Tourette syndrome. Both the new kid and the new phantom seem to need some kind of help. When the new kid falls prey to the school bullies, Stevie knows they must act. But will they be too late, or will a tragic moment in their school’s history be repeated on Halloween night?

Book 3 – Stevie-Girl and the Phantom of Crybaby Bridge

The summer his parents treat them to a camping trip in New Mexico, the two friends can’t wait to visit the legendary Crybaby Bridge. Right away, they hear the crying baby. Is it a phantom, or is someone playing tricks on them?

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10 Fun Facts about Ann Swann

I signed up to go sky diving once but my instructor broke his ankle on a hard landing and I never went back!

I can wiggle my ears

Once I broke down on the L.A. freeway and had to sleep in my car beside the highway.

My high school mascot was a Golden Tornado (go Tors!)

Stevie-girl and the Phantom Pilot is set in a fictional version of my hometown

I lit a science project on fire during an experiment in college. That wasn’t supposed to happen.

One of my earliest jobs was delivering newspapers. One of my later jobs was as a 911 dispatcher.

I also taught upper level elementary school – Reading, of course.

My home is so close to a local high school I can hear the band practicing every morning. It takes me back to my own band geek/choir nerd days.

I once had a dog named Snakeman and I based one of my favorite characters on him (see the novel Takers: Apocalypse in Eden)

(Looking back over these, I fear I may be suffering from arrested development!)

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Copper Lake Book Tour @ann_swann

Copper Lake

by Ann Swann

Stutter Creek Series, Book 3

 

They call him the Killer Cartographer because he carves the map coordinates of each victim on the femur of the one before. Then he tattoos the information on his skin. Can Detective Kendra Dean bring him in, or will she become his next tattoo?

 


     
Ann lives in Texas with her husband and rescue pets. She loves libraries and book stores and owns two e-readers just for fun. Ann writes what she likes to read.
 All For Love, a Contemporary Romance filled with heartache and hope, was Ann’s first novel for 5 Prince Publishing. It has been on Amazon’s bestseller list for Literary Fiction.
 Her Romantic Suspense series begins with:
Stutter Creek, which has been on Amazon’s bestseller list for Romantic Suspense, and continues with her newest release, 
Lilac Lane, which one reader called “almost too scary.” Book three will be out in 2015.
She also writes short fiction, which is usually speculative in nature. To find out more simply contact Ann at one of the ways listed below, or click on the STAY UPDATED button on her Amazon Author Page. 

 Connect with the Author Here:

            

Top Ten List

Top 10 Strange Things About Ann Swann

  1. I love weird and spooky books
  2. I write weird books and even weirder short stories
  3. I was so shy that I hated going to school as a child
  4. I became a teacher
  5. I loved marching in the school band
  6. And also singing in the school choir (soprano)
  7. I almost died from Chicken Pox – at age 29 – I was in ICU for six days
  8. I am an eclectic reader: Edgar Allan Poe, Ray Bradbury, Stephen King, Mary Stewart, Colleen Hoover, Clare Cook, Jeffrey Deaver, Suzanne Collins, Gillian Flynn, James Lee Burke, Larry McMurty, and Jodi Picoult are some of my favorite authors. And if I really want to scare myself, I read Revelations.
  9. I went to work at age 14 in our local drive-in restaurant. Until I received my teaching degree many years later, I cleaned houses, delivered newspapers, worked as a 911 operator, and scheduled commercials as a traffic secretary at a rock and roll radio station (KUFO).
  10. I can wiggle my ears

 

Excerpts

Kendra glanced out the window. “I’m not expecting anyone.” And then she recognized her old Mercury rolling up the drive.

“That’s Detective James, isn’t it?” Carrie asked. They were all familiar with each other. He’d been her mom’s partner for several years. On more than one occasion, the kids had been delighted to deliver food and drink to the office when the two detectives found themselves pulling all-nighters.

“So it is,” Kendra replied. She swept off her apron and headed out to greet him as he stepped from the car.

“Happy Thanksgiving.” His deep voice was jolly as he shut the car door. “I see the kids all made it.”

Kendra nodded. Hearing him call her offspring “the kids,” made her smile. He was only fifteen years older than Keith. “Did I forget that I invited you?” She didn’t believe in mincing words.

Woody grinned and shook his head. “Nah, your mental faculties are intact.” He hitched at his belt, looked at the ground. “I just came to tell you that the preliminary findings of the investigation are in.” He looked at her, and then tapped the corner of her new bifocals. “Nice,” he said. “About time you started acting your age.”

Kendra felt her knees softening. She plopped down on the porch step. The cool fall breeze played in her hair, tickling her neck and the tops of her ears. She wanted to acknowledge his acknowledgment of her new specs, but right at this moment, she couldn’t think. “It’s bad news, huh?”

He hesitated. “Don’t get ahead of me. I just didn’t want you to hear it from someone else.”

Kendra felt her world shrink to a pinpoint. “Are they saying it was my fault? That it was a bad collar?”

Woody nodded then sat down beside her and looped an arm around her shoulders.

“Dammit. I don’t want to cry.” She pulled off her metal-rimmed glasses and took the handkerchief he offered. “You know how I hate crying.”

He squeezed her gently. “It’s only preliminary. I think his seemingly spotless record is what’s causing them consternation. Well, that and his wife giving him an alibi.”

She sniffled and blew her nose loudly.

“I feel as though we’re being watched,” he said. “I’m resisting the urge to turn around.”

Kendra nodded. “It’s the girls. No doubt they’re plastered to the window. They think we’re having an affair, probably.”

Woody whispered, “Might as well, then. We could start tonight after the kids are all tucked in.”

She snorted and wiped her eyes. “You’re incorrigible. But since you came all this way, are you hungry? We’re just about to put dinner on the table.”

He stood and held out his hand. “I thought you’d never ask.”

 

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He hadn’t been able to clean the bones completely. Even with the help of chemicals there had been a fair amount of meat left, but that was okay. He’d loved imagining how they would look after being in the ground for a while. It was only that one femur that he needed clean. So he could hold it. And carve it.

That thought, that imagining, had kept him in check for years, right up until Candy had forced him out of “retirement” with all her baby talk.

And now that he had brought his best girl back into the light—into the land of the living, so to speak—he was delighted he hadn’t been successful in stripping her of her birthday suit completely. For the last few days, he’d found himself nearly salivating at the thought of uncovering the mysteries that lay beneath the soil where each of the others was buried.

He pushed up the sleeve of his shirt and looked at the numerical tattoo on the inside of his wrist. Joey. He didn’t look at the tats on his upper thighs. They were much more difficult to see; they blended in with the old cut-scars perfectly. Thankfully I made a precise record of each burial. I suppose my subconscious knew I would need to find them again, someday. He rolled his sleeve back down.

Ommm.

He straightened the tassels on the cushion. They had to hang perfectly straight or his OCD wouldn’t let him concentrate. The he got up and straightened the cords hanging down from the open blinds, and at last, the memories left him, and true meditation began.

Ommm.

 

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Kendra shrugged and met his grin with a tired one of her own. “The things we do for the job.” She took another sip of her drink and inspected the nearly deserted bar. “Thank God there’s not much going on.”

Woody nodded. “I’ll be ready to hit the sack after this.” He glanced around, too. “It’d be our luck for a fight to break out. Guess we’re taking quite a chance having a drink when we’re technically still on-the-job.”

Kendra raised her short glass. “Here’s to taking chances.”

“Amen.” Woody clinked his beer bottle against her glass.

When a slow song came on the jukebox, he stood and held out his hand. “Take another chance?”

She took a long, slow sip of her drink and then set it down before placing her hand in his. It’s only one song she told herself. But a flame ignited in her belly as she allowed him to pull her in close. He didn’t press her body to his; he simply curled his large hand around hers and held it against his chest while the music led them around the tiny dance floor. When she chanced a glance at his face, she was surprised to find his eyes were closed.

She relaxed and rested her temple against the shelf of his chin. Even now she could still recall the way she felt in his arms as if she’d just arrived home from a long, arduous, journey. Kendra also remembered wondering how long it had been since she and Bill had gone dancing. How long it had been since they had held each other so tenderly and carefully.

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Swann, Ann: Lilac Lane

Lilac Lane Banner photo LilacLane_zps81f3bceb.jpg

Title:Lilac Lane (Stutter Creek Series)

Author: Ann Swann

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Age Group: Adult

Sexual Content: Mild

Publish Date: July 24, 2014

Publisher: 5 Prince Publishing

Event organized by: Literati Author Services, Inc.

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~ Book Synopsis ~

Lilac Lane photo reducedLilac_zps06d62bec.jpgElla and her son survived her ex-husband’s drunken wrath. They are starting a new life in a new town, Stutter Creek. She’s even met a real man. A gentle wild life biologist named Chet Boone. But now, her ex has been released from prison early. Is that him driving past their new house late at night? Is he the one causing the strange sounds and flickering lights? Can they survive a second round with a madman?

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~ Excerpt ~

It was after midnight when Nick appeared at his mom’s bedside like a little phantom, still clutching his football pillow. His hair stuck up in little whorls and corkscrews. “Something woke me,” he said. “Sounds like someone walking around, up there.” He indicated the ceiling with a thrust of his chin. Ella came awake quickly, as only a worried parent can. “Let’s go take a look.” She climbed out of bed. “You go,” Nick said. “I’ll wait here.” He sat on the edge of her bed. She wanted to say okay, just stay here and let Mama handle it, but she was afraid if he didn’t sleep in his own room tonight, on their very first night, he might expect to sleep with her from now on. “I need you with me,” she said. “As backup.” Nick sighed. “Okay…but what if it’s a ghost? It’s an old house, it’s probably haunted.”

Purchase Links

Amazon | iTunes | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords | ARe | 5 Prince Publishing

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~About the Author~

Ann Swann photo PurpleAuthorPic_zps86651b15.png Ann lives in Texas with her handsome hubby and several rescue pets. Lilac Lane is the second book in this Romantic Suspense series, the first being Stutter Creek. Ann’s very first book with 5 Prince Publishing was All For Love, a heartbreaking story of ill- fated romance. She is also the author of The Phantom Series. Book One is Stevie-girl and the Phantom Pilot, Book Two is Stevie-girl and the Phantom Student, and Book T hree is Stevie-girl and the Phantom of Crybaby Bridge. Ann has also published short fiction in the anthologies Timeless (paranormal love stories) and Tales of Terror (horror) as well as a speculative short story, Chems. Her current work-in-progress is book three set in Stutter Creek. The next novel will be called Copper Lake. Look for a short excerpt at the end of Lilac Lane. When she isn’t writing, Ann is reading. Her to-be-read list has grown so large it has taken on a life of its own. She calls it Herman.

Connect with the Author:

Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Amazon | Goodreads

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~Giveaway~

  • a $25 Amazon gift card (international)