5th Anniversary of Blogging!

First, thank you so much to the 150 individuals who are now following me on Romance and Other Dangers — I sincerely appreciate that you’re here. Hope to keep things fresh and interesting for you as my 365 Days of Blogging project continues!

And — WOW — 150 followers?! (happy dance)

And second, I have discovered the active links for Crystal and Wand: Book 3 of the Talbot Trilogy! It’s always so exciting to see one’s work out there in the world . . .

Here’s what the latest paranormal romance / urban fantasy is about. Be warned! It’s gritty, sexy, poignant, and highly satisfying:

Lovers reunite, and are torn apart. Bloodthirsty fiends battle for control of an army of the undead. With the community of Talbot frozen under layers of ice and snow, the domination of the vampire coven seems certain, but in the eye of the storm, the witches and the vampire hunters search desperately for the means to bring an end to the violence that threatens to take over more than one small, sleepy town. Will Rayvin and Charlotte be able to work together, combining their skills in magick, to prevent the loss of more innocent lives?

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While the novel isn’t yet available for Kobo (Chapters-Indigo), the first two books and prequel novella most definitely are:

https://store.kobobooks.com/en-CA/ebook/mist-and-midnight

Wind and Shadow (Talbot Series #1)

https://store.kobobooks.com/en-CA/ebook/blood-and-fire-10

And the series is available for Nook (Barnes and Noble):

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/crystal-and-wand-tori-l-ridgewood/1122295880?ean=2940152028843

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/blood-and-fire-tori-l-ridgewood/1118482049?ean=9781612358109

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/wind-and-shadow-tori-l-ridgewood/1116138235?ean=9781612356396

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/mist-and-midnight-tori-l-ridgewood/1118892948?ean=2940149783748

Plus, of course, you can find the books on Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/Crystal-Wand-Talbot-Trilogy-Book-ebook/dp/B011KCDLZW/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1437965485&sr=8-2&keywords=tori+l+ridgewood

http://www.amazon.com/Blood-Fire-Talbot-Trilogy-Book-ebook/dp/B00IDNJ7U0/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1437965485&sr=8-5&keywords=tori+l+ridgewood

http://www.amazon.com/Wind-Shadow-Talbot-Trilogy-Book/dp/1612356397/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1437965485&sr=8-4&keywords=tori+l+ridgewood

http://www.amazon.com/Mist-Midnight-Talbot-Trilogy-Book-ebook/dp/B00HQA3MKC/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1437965485&sr=8-6&keywords=tori+l+ridgewood

And at Melange Books:

http://melange-books.com/authors/torilridgewood/crystalwand.html

Still working on a release party, but feeling rather gobsmacked today after all of the travel this past week. Definitely missing the lake, but starting to feel more in the swing of things again. Slowly.

So thank you again to everyone who has stepped onto the Tori Train (so to speak) — I hope that you will continue to enjoy my rants, reflections, poems, and essays!

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Book Review: Blood and Fire (The Talbot Trilogy) by Tori L. Ridgewood

Book Review: Blood and Fire (The Talbot Trilogy) by Tori L. Ridgewood.

Absolutely blown away by this wonderful review… completely made my day. 😀

Journey with me in Placing Literature!

Journey with me in Placing Literature!

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PlacingLiterature.com enables readers to map the locations of books set in real towns, cities, parks, etc. This month, my work has been included in their spotlight! 

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The setting of the Talbot Trilogy is based on the real town of Cobalt, Ontario. Clicking on the bookmarks in the map will take you to the locations that inspired key events, characters, and places in the series. I write about places I love, so it’s a real privilege to make these places visible to you as well. 

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Throughout the month, I’ll be adding to my virtual tour of the places used in Wind and Shadow, its prequel novella Mist and Midnight, and the locations coming up in Book Two: Blood and Fire (coming February 12) and the final instalment, Book Three: Crystal and Wand (coming summer 2014). I’m looking forward to your comments along the way!

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Contest Time! Who wants to win a free copy of Wind and Shadow?

There are Rafflecopter draws happening at my guest posts on Book Flame and The Book Rat — click the links and play along for your chance to win a free copy of my debut paranormal romance!

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http://bookflame.blogspot.ca/2013/09/how-to-sell-your-book-online-guest-post.htmlOnly FOUR days left on this one at the time of this post…

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http://www.thebookrat.com/2013/09/wind-shadow-by-tori-l-ridgewood-excerpt.html14 days remaining in this draw at the time of this post…

(waits expectantly, fingers tapping on the keyboard, clicking back and forth between Rafflecopter counts)

Did you enter yet?

😉

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Giveaway plus Interview equals ANOTHER GIVEAWAY!

Page Trotters is hosting a giveaway of my debut novel, Wind and Shadow — check it out, enter, and leave a comment: http://pagetrotter.blogspot.ca

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And, Indie Author Land is interviewing me this Wednesday, July 22! Make a note to stop by and say hello! http://www.indieauthorland.com

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Then, click the Rafflecopter link: a Rafflecopter giveaway to tell me that you visited and commented! And I’ll give away an extra copy of Wind and Shadow!

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Pass it on!

UPDATE: The winner of this giveaway is David Margetson — congratulations!

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Wind and Shadow: Book One of the Talbot Trilogy

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Buy Links:
(PDF or Print) http://www.melange-books.com/authors/torilridgewood/windandshadow.html
(Kindle) http://www.amazon.com/Wind-Shadow-Talbot-Trilogy-ebook/dp/B00DYCH64Y/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1374184496&sr=8-1&keywords=wind+and+shadow+tori+ridgewood
(B&N) http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/wind-and-shadow-tori-l-ridgewood/1116138235?ean=9781612356396
(Smashwords) https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/340100
(Kobo) http://store.kobobooks.com/en-ca/books/wind-and-shadow-talbot-series-1/JPwUsVxsCkqvqn_pDL1MYw?MixID=JPwUsVxsCkqvqn_pDL1MYw&PageNumber=1

Lady Amber’s Reviews Blog Hop!

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There be give-aways and prizes celebrating indie authors and self-published writers, lads and lassies! The hop is happening from July 3 to July 10, and then the winners will be announced on July 11.

Your blog hop begins below — click the BLUE link (Powered by LinkyTools) to see the Blog Hop schedule:

Powered by Linky Tools

Click here to enter your link and view this Linky Tools list…

And, here’s info about the host, Lady Amber!

http://ambersupernaturalandya.blogspot.ca/p/blog-page.html

Now, for my part:

I’m giving away a prize pack! WindShadowFinal2
-a Wind and Shadow magnet and bookmark
-a pair of handmade beeswax tea-lights (lead-free paper wicks)
-a “blood”-filled fang necklace from Vampirewear.com
-a free e-copy of my new release, Wind and Shadow: Book One of the Talbot Trilogy

Enjoy the excerpt, watch the book trailer, and then enter the draw!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

From Chapter 6 of Wind and Shadow:

One moment, she had been looking daggers at him; the next, she was crying; then suddenly, she was throwing herself out the door, looking for all the world like she was going for his eyes. Grant’s reaction was one born of years of police training: he instantly stepped back on his heel while simultaneously looping one hard arm around her waist, grabbing her wrist with the other hand and lifting her bodily off the ground. She shrieked, and without stopping to think, Grant moved quickly into the house, slamming the door behind them with one foot before turning to brace her against the varnished wood surface. She struggled and bucked, swearing a blue streak, but unable to break his hold, finally slumped against the door.
Grant became aware of his proximity to her barely covered, damp and heated body, and looked her over carefully to determine whether it was safe for him to let her go. He’d been up and active for almost fifteen hours, but the adrenaline coursing through him now made him feel wide awake.
The decision to come and see her after his shift, rather than going right to bed like his body wanted, had been the right choice. He’d eaten, showered, and changed, stalling for time while his reserves kicked into gear—it would not have been a good idea to show up at her doorstep exhausted, hungry, and in the uniform he’d been wearing while chasing after animal killers. Waiting until midmorning had also allowed him to think over what he was going to say. He hadn’t expected their conversation to go quite like this, though.
“All right?” Grant rumbled, seeking her gaze. He was close enough that his breath ruffled the few curls which had already dried over her face. And he could see the tears now drying in sparkling tracks on her high, flushed cheeks.
“Done with the tantrum? If you’re going to keep fighting me,” he continued when she didn’t respond right away, “I can hold you for as long as it takes. Or I can charge you with attacking an officer of the law, even if I am off- duty. I don’t think you’d like being taken to the lock-up dressed like this.”
At that, she whipped her head up, spearing him with the fury in her eyes. He resisted the impulse to flinch, but didn’t release her from his tight grip. She was wrestling for control, he could tell; her face was flushed, her nostrils flaring and her teeth were bared. Her back arched under his body. Her face was so close he could see little flecks of gold and green in the grey of her eyes. She smelled sweet, like berries and cream. Her skin, nearly dry, was soft and pliant under his hands. His thoughts were barely coherent.
She wasn’t the only one wrestling for control.
Rayvin’s head tilted back against the door, landing with a soft thump. The towel protecting her modesty was now only held in place by the pressure of his chest. Her eyes glittered as her tongue darted out to moisten her lips before she spoke.
“Michaels, I’m not going to attack you—because then you wouldn’t be able to get my cat back.”
“Your cat?”
“You didn’t notice a small, furry black animal brushing past your feet? My, you were distracted, officer,” she sneered, holding herself rigidly in his embrace. “I think you need to work on your powers of observation. Yes, it is your fault that my cat has gotten away. She’s a house cat, a rescue; she won’t be able to effectively defend herself against other animals out there. I was trying to catch her when your uber-sensitive policeman reflexes took over. And there’s some creep out there, murdering people’s pets. So you’ve currently got two options. One, you get your ass out there and find my animal, which will prevent me from calling your superior and making a complaint regarding harassment. Or two, you leave now, and never come back, and I won’t call your superior.”
He tilted his head slightly, considering. If a woman could shoot lasers from her eyes, he’d be pile of ash right now. She clearly meant business. Still, he held his grip.
“The way I see it, there’s a third option. Imagine, for an instant, how that phone call will go. You’re new in town, but your name rings a bell for him. He checks up on your background. Meanwhile, he knows me, trained me, and I’ve never once had a citizen complaint against me in eight years on the force. I’m not saying this to threaten you, or discourage you; you have every right to make that phone call. But in the end, you know how it’s going to work out. Do you really want that headache, and the bigger one that will happen when you end up frustrated and pissed off?”
He saw the change in her expression for a moment when reality hit her, and admired the supreme effort it must have taken to close that expression down; this was a woman, he had to admit, he would not like to play poker with. Or, perhaps he would. If it were anyone but her, he might relish the challenge of pushing the control to its breaking point.
As her breathing slowed, and her posture relaxed, Grant adjusted his stance. “Okay?”
Rayvin, still holding his eyes, nodded.
“Good.” He let go of her hands, and took a step back.
“I’m sorry about your cat,” he started to apologize, turning for a moment
to scan the residence. He had just enough time to for an impression of scattered, opened boxes, when his sight was cut off by damp, scented terrycloth descending over his head. Before he could react or think, the floor had rushed up to meet his body as it was slammed down by what had to be the brilliantly executed sweep of a perfectly sexy leg; the towel was twisted tightly at the back of his head, and one arm pinned beneath him, the other held with surprising strength at an awkward angle.
In the enforced darkness, Grant couldn’t suppress a quick grin. He couldn’t deny it—he admired this woman and her ability to take care of herself. Her petite, soft and fragile outward appearance concealed intelligence and strength, and fearlessness. Her confidence and capability were intriguing him. Just what was it that made her tick? It was too bad they had this past between them, this lust for disaster in her. In another life, he would have enjoyed sitting down and having a conversation with Rayvin Woods. Getting to know her, in more than one way.
He found himself having to concentrate when she started talking. For some reason, he couldn’t get the picture of this unexpected turn of events out of his head. She had thrown her towel around his head and was now straddling him on the floor . . . which meant that she was definitely, completely unclothed.
“Grant, you didn’t seem to hear me before.” Rayvin twitched the towel. “You left me little alternative. But if getting physical is your best method of communication, what other choice do I have?
“I’m not here to threaten you, or your little town. I just want to live in peace. With my cat. Which you let out of the house. And since options don’t seem to work with you, you no longer have a choice. Leave me alone, and I won’t trigger an investigation which will cause you more headaches than it ever would me.” His body was still under hers, commanding his attention. “I’ll say it again; I don’t know or care what you think you saw. As far as I’m concerned, this conversation is over. I’m going to get up, you’re going to leave my towel right there on the floor, and without turning around, you’re going to get up and let yourself out. You think I’m angry now? Watch what happens if you test me.”
She released her hold on his arm, lightly jumped to her feet, and walked around the corner of the stairwell, to listen as he followed her instructions.
Grant’s face burned, his voice tightly controlled. “It’s not over, Rayvin.” He let the door slam shut behind him.

Thanks for stopping by, everyone! Cheers!

psst — here’s the giveaway link one more time…

a Rafflecopter giveaway

***UPDATE***

The winner has been chosen, and it is Tiffany Riach! Congratulations! Thanks again to all who came and participated in this giveaway and blog hop — cheers!

Book Release Party July 7!

Celebrate with me the release of Wind and Shadow: Book One of the Talbot Trilogy, with games, prizes, and giveaways on July 7 from 12-5 pm:

https://www.facebook.com/events/387077754732358/

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Prizes and giveaways include:
Wind and Shadow bookmarks and pens
-a Wind and Shadow mug and magnet set
-a Wind and Shadow notebook and pen set,
-a Wind and Shadow key chain,
-1 Wind and Shadow t-shirt,
-3 sets of vampire bite removable tattoos (Vampirewear.com)
-a “blood”-filled fang necklace (Vampirewear.com)
-a mini-rose fang necklace (Vampirewear.com)
-5 free e-copies of Wind and Shadow,
-THREE signed print copies of Wind and Shadow: Book One of the Talbot Trilogy

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PLUS: Every comment is an entry into a draw for the Mystery Prize! (hint: a special necklace only available from Vampirewear.com is included!) Note: If you live outside of Eastern Standard Time, don’t despair — you are eligible for this terrific gift box! (pics to come, she whispered mysteriously…)

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*note: event rescheduled as of June 26 to July 7

June 25 — 9 Days to the release of Wind and Shadow!

LogoColorNoText(Yes, I know I’ve had the countdown before. I am, at times, an unrelenting optimist.)

I’ve been feeling a bit nostalgic, lately. Listening to my (admittedly overly-long) playlist. Starting to look at Book Two again, which will pick up two weeks after the events of Book One. I’ve also been searching my boxes of notebooks madly for the original writing I did, seven years ago last month, while sitting with my five-month-old in an uninsulated counsellors’ cabin at a children’s camp, waiting for our house to be ready to move into . . .

Where did this book come from? Why was I crazy enough to pursue it?

Because it demanded to be told. And it wasn’t easy, though so many times I wished it was.

It came out of a memory of a road collapsing in Cobalt, Ontario, sometime after 1989. As far as I can tell, there aren’t any pictures of this event online, though I’m sure someone somewhere has a photo tucked away in an album.

And then, it was fed by my love of romance novels and vampires. The very first romance I ever remember reading was an historical fantasy by Robin Mckinley, called The Blue Sword (still one of my favourites — my first and only copy recently fell apart!), although the Anne of Green Gables and Little House on the Prairie series certainly qualify as bursting with the elements. While I enjoyed the flowery imagery of books about love, I was also drawn to the macabre and the gruesome, the weird and bizarre. I was a big fan of MAD magazine from the age of 10. And the first horrors I read — Salem’s Lot, Dracula, and Tales of the Cryptkeeper — had me hooked on ghost stories and other stories of the paranormal. Films followed, of course: The Watcher in the Woods, Friday the 13th, The Lost Boys, Interview with a Vampire, Dracula (again!), Army of Darkness, The Monster Squad, John Carpenter’s Vampires, and more recently, 30 Days of Night, Twilight, Blade, Underworld, Dawn of the Dead . . .

So when I started working on Wind and Shadow, I was thinking of all of these influences. It reflects and blends some of the qualities of these works, but is also my answer to certain ideas created by best-selling authors. I’m hoping it has the creepiness and sense of doom created by Stephen King in Salem’s Lot, but that the romance carries the reader into loving the protagonists as much as I do. I am a huge fan of the Twilight Saga, even though I don’t agree with some of the choices made by the characters, and so I worked on an opposite scenario. My vampires aren’t, by and large, sexy and stylish at all times. But the allure of vampirism for those whose lives are not ideal is there. What wouldn’t some of us do for eternal youth, rejuvenation, and strength?

A third element of my life and experiences also demanded to bring itself into this vision. I’m Wiccan, and a witch. I enjoy my craft, feel entirely at home in my spirituality, and I wanted a book that embraced it as much as the film Practical Magic. There are an increasing number of fictional books that incorporate Wicca and/or positive witchcraft, as opposed to the wicked witch trope, and I wanted to add to that body with my own work. I’m hoping that fellow Wiccans and witches, and the Pagan community in general, will enjoy seeing some of their beliefs reflected in the trilogy, but also that non-Pagans will enjoy it as well.

Finally, I realized a fourth influence was at work when I was going through the editing process. As a Canadian, I’m well aware that we aren’t always represented in modern romance or paranormal fiction. There are fantastic Canadian authors out there, but I haven’t read many that produce work in these genres. So I found myself guarding my Canadianisms fiercely. After all, the book takes place in Northeastern Ontario, deep in one of the cultural hearts of the nation. It’s almost tempting to make a count of the shout-outs to Canucks near and far!

I’m still in the planning stages for the release party, but I have goodies ready for giving away: a mug, a t-shirt, pens, notebooks, bookmarks, plus some vampire fang necklaces. My heart is starting to pound again with anticipation . . . Keep your fingers crossed that all goes well on June 25th!

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