A Perfect Book for an Imperfect Father’s Day

Having last blogged for Mother’s Day (on my author blog), it seems only fair to blog here for Father’s Day. Not too much direct experience with the mother thing, granted, but I do have experience with being a father. In 2014, I launched my novel AIKO, about a man who discovers he is a father. However, before he can celebrate Father’s Day, he must overcome a lot of obstacles to claim his child. Perhaps it is a simple story. The details make it special. And yet, it is strangely similar to one of the grand opera stories of my youth: Madama Butterfly by Giacomo Puccini. (Here is the Metropolitan Opera’s synopsis.)

As a music student in college, I was not averse to attending an opera or two. Some were more interesting than others. My mother, who always promoted my musical interests, took me to my first opera when I was a boy: Richard Wagner’s The Flying Dutchman, about a ghost ship doomed to sail the seas forever. (Why is there no movie version today? It would make a great paranormal film.) But it was Madama Butterfly that became my favorite, and the only opera I can enjoy just listening to without having to see the stage production.

In the opera, an American naval officer visits Japan and because he is staying there a while on business, he arranges to have a “temporary” wife. The inevitable happens: his business is concluded and he leaves, promising to return, and later she discovers a child will be born. He does eventually return, but with his American wife in tow. He is surprised to find his Japanese lover has a child but he is determined to bring the child home to America. The Japanese woman is so distraught over that verdict that she commits suicide in one of opera’s most tragic scenes.

While I was living in Japan in the late 1980s and early 90s, teaching English to the students of a small city, I wrote the story of an American man who meets a Japanese woman. They have a relationship then must inevitably part. A child is born. Eventually the man learns of the child’s existence and wants to do the right thing. Despite his American wife’s objection, he goes to Japan to check things out. I’m skipping over a lot of details, of course, but you see how the plot is similar to the Madama Butterfly story. That was purely unintentional.

Seeing that similarity, I decided to exploit it and revised my story to use some elements of Madama Butterfly more overtly. First, I wanted to tell the story from the man’s point of view. The opera is all from her side. Before I knew much about Japanese history and customs, I had always wondered why Cho-Cho-san (literally “Madame Butterfly”) decided to kill herself to solve the problem. She should have killed him for trying to take away her child! Not to say killing is acceptable, of course. In my Western mindset, I could not understand her motivations. Now I do. So in telling the story from his side, I would need to show him as a rational, responsible, do-the-right thing kind of guy who has all the best intentions while dealing with the situation.
The next thing I wanted to change was the time period. The opera is set at the turn-of-the-century when American naval forces first begin to rule the Pacific. In changing the setting to the late 1980s and early 1990s (the same time period I wrote it), I could exploit the new “internationalization” focus of Japan. Because of a booming economy and criticism of Japan’s unfair trade practices, the government initiated (among other acts) the importing of foreign English teachers from the USA, UK, Canada, and Australia. I was part of that influx of teachers who went to Japan. I was there at the exact time of the story, and I described the clash of generations: the older World War II seniors and the pop culture youth who knew little about the war. It was an interesting yet awkward time. And it fit perfectly for my version of the story.

So there you have it: Art imitating a life which imitates art.

Being a guy, of course I wanted my male protagonist to not be a jerk, to do the right thing. But he is human and thus has flaws. He also faces the clash of customs, lost among people who think differently, where the acts that make no sense to him seem perfectly logical to the local folk. Japan in the 1990s is a modern place, but in inaka (the rural, “backwoods” regions), the old, traditional ways still hold sway. So our hero, Benjamin Pinkerton (yes, I borrowed the name from the character in the opera, just to make the connection more obvious), tries to do the right thing: save a child he never knew he had while risking everything in his life back home. It is another stranger in a strange land scenario I like to write.

The #CockyGate Trademark Kerfuffle

Cockygate takes over Twitter!

This weekend, Twitter blew up with the #cockygate or #cocky scandal, where a romance author trademarked the common English word cocky. Normally, these kerfuffles are way over my head and I don’t pay attention but I used to work in a patent agency and I have a little, read very little, knowledge of intellectual property and what I read filled me with horror.

Quick disclaimer: The views expressed in this post are the author’s personal opinion alone and do not reflect Myrddin’s.

I worked in the search department. It was my job to check the validity of patents and report to clients on them as well as other duties. Because of this I had to attend ‘lessons’ with the ‘baby’ agents (affectionate term for trainees) on patent law. I know this isn’t trademark law and that they are very different but it did kind of crop up in conversations now and again. It was drummed into us that patents had to be unique. Part of my job was to find other patents or find inventions in use before an application was filed to ‘blow it out of the water’. I thought of myself as a bit of a pirate. Arrr!

Trademarks were supposed to follow a similar vein. Trademarks were supposed to incur protection for novel and unique marks. I may have not paid the proper amount of attention when they were talking about it, the smoked salmon bagels were particularly delicious in those lessons, so I admit I may have got the wrong end of the stick. I’m always willing to be wrong.

This brings me back to cockygate. An author filed and was granted a trademark for the word ‘Cocky’ as well as another for the stylized word to do with her book series.

The USPTO is notoriously busy and things can slip through which probably shouldn’t. Saying this, it does only take a few seconds to determine on Amazon that there were pre-existing books on there with the word Cocky in the title and even (so I’ve heard) there was a series with that word in the series title.

The danger of letting this trademark happen is that authors could trademark other common English words. This could be ‘the’ or ‘billionaire’, how about ‘star’? The last one could be great. You could retroactively sue the Star Wars or Star Trek franchises as well as untold books. This lady is a genius. Edit:  I’m pretty sure you can’t do this. I thought you could only threaten people who use your trademarked mark AFTER you’ve got it. Prior use and all that. It doesn’t stop people from trying though and sometimes just the threat is enough to scare someone to do what you want. End of edit.

I’m not saying trademarking words is stupid. Apple for example is a trademark of the computer company. An ordinary every day apple of the fruit variety cannot be confused with the maker of computers and iPhones etc. I’ve always believed that was why some are allowed and others not. Cocky on the other hand is a descriptive word which is used on a daily basis in the field the author inhabits. It has been used before and it makes it difficult to remove that word from that field without affecting others. You do not need to refer to apples in any way when talking about computers, I suppose you could give away a bag of apples with every purchase, but that is stretching it!

There may be a happy ending with this. An attorney with knowledge in the field has filed a petition to get rid of the offending trademark. I believe with my little and limited understanding that he has a real chance of this working. Also, allegedly, one of the trademarks granted was using a font that was not permitted to be trademarked. Unfortunately, I think this trademark has a genuine basis. It was the word cocky but only written in a certain way. This meant that an author could use cocky in their title but they would have to use a different font, no biggy. Except she was given the word cocky as well which meant cease and desist letters went out when maybe they shouldn’t have.

The attorney is also an author and so has a stake in this debacle as all authors do if this precedent stands. He has my undying admiration for undertaking this, not just for filing the petition but also for not seeking damages or any financial penalties. After all, the trademark happy author may have just received bad advice and is acting on that advice. I do like to think the best of people.

However this pans out, there will still be fallout even if this trademark is annihilated. Authors will be out of pocket and let’s be frank, authors don’t make a ton of money unless you are one of our heroes like Stephen King, James Patterson, JK Rowling or the other heavyweights.

I really hope this can be resolved soon and no one suffers too much from what could be traced back to a simple mistake of not enough staff at the USPTO to assess the viability of a trademark.

Myrddin Has All your Valentine’s Day Romance Needs Covered!

find love with myrddin publishing

Here at Myrddin Publishing, we cover a lot of genres and romance is no exception. Whether you like contemporary, historical, or paranormal romance, there is something for everyone on your list. Below is just a sample of where you might find your next Valentine’s day treat! you can find the full list of Myrddin romance here.

find love with myrddin publishing

Contemporary

A Beatutiful Chill by Stephen SwartzA Beautiful Chill by Stephen Swartz

Life is impossible when every moment of the present is haunted by the past.

Íris is a refugee from an abusive youth in Iceland, further abused on the streets of Toronto – until she sees Art as an escape. With a scholarship, she drifts from depression to nightmare to Wiccan rituals to the next exhibit. There’s a lot she must forget to succeed in a life she refuses to take responsibility for.

Eric is settling in at Fairmont College, starting a new life after betrayal and heartbreak. Divorced and hitting forty, he has a lot to prove – to his father, his colleagues, and mostly to himself. The last thing he needs is a distraction – and there’s nothing more distracting than Iris.

A Beautiful Chill is a contemporary romance set in the duplicitous world of academic rules and artistic license.

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Ednor Scardens by Kathleen BarkerEdnor Scardens (The Charm City Chronicles Book #1) by Kathleen Barker

Growing up in an Irish Catholic neighborhood in Baltimore in the 1960’s was hard enough when everything went right. Kate Fitzgerald wasn’t that lucky.

Struggling to cope with unwanted attention from older boys and men, Kate’s childhood friendship with shy classmate Gabe Kelsey begins to blossom, but quickly becomes tangled when she falls hard for his darkly handsome older brother, Michael.

As the brothers vie for Kate’s affections, she doesn’t know how to choose between them without tearing their family apart. She looks to her girlfriends for advice, but the tragic death of a classmate brings them face-to-face with mortality, shattering their facade of invincibility.

Her dilemma deepens when a predatory priest with a hidden past arrives at Holy Sacrament School. And when she silently witnesses a frightening scene between Gabe and Fr. O’Conner, Kate unknowingly becomes O’Conner’s intended next victim.

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Historical

The Truth About Lagertha And Ragnar by Rachel TsoumbakosViking: The Truth about Lagertha and Ragnar by Rachel Tsoumbakos

 

Lagertha was known to be one of the wives of the famous Viking, Ragnar Lodbrok. But did you know they first met each other at a brothel? And just how long did their marriage last? Was Lagertha really the revered shield maiden we see her as today? ‘Vikings: The Truth About Lagertha And Ragnar’ aims to unravel all these secrets.

‘Vikings: The Truth About Lagertha And Ragnar’ is so much more than a history book though.

In Part One their story is brought to life with a historically accurate retelling. Part Two then explores the historical facts surrounding this story.

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Paranormal

Heart Search by Carlie M A CullenHeart Search (Book #1) by Carlie M.A. Cullen

One bite starts it all . . .

When Joshua Grant vanishes days before his wedding his fiancée Remy is left with only bruises, scratch marks and a hastily written note. Heartbroken, she sets off alone to find him and begins a long journey where strange things begin to happen.

As Joshua descends into his new immortal life he indulges his thirst for blood and explores his superhuman strength and amazing new talents while becoming embroiled in coven politics which threaten to destroy him. But Remy discovers a strength of her own on her quest to bring Joshua home.

Fate toys with mortals and immortals alike, as two hearts torn apart by darkness face ordeals which test them to their limits.

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Crafting Timeless Stories

Romantic love and passion are important to us as humans and also are things we enjoy in our reading.  But truthfully, novels heavy on the graphic “insert tab ‘A’ into slot ‘B’ details” don’t interest me. Neither do adventure novels with no hint of romance, I like my reading material highly adventurous and well seasoned with romance. I say this for two reasons:

  1. Graphic romance with no plot is porn, and I think we should just call it that and be done with it. It doesn’t intrigue me, so I probably won’t make a habit of writing it, but I say good for you, if that is what you write. You are smart–there is huge market for it.
  2. Conversely, adventure with no romance is a travelogue detailing a rough trip, but nothing to write home about. I want to read a tale of intense personal growth, horrible setbacks, and love that rises above all odds.

This is not to say that I don’t have my graphic moments as a writer. Anyone who has read Huw the Bard will know  there are some graphic moments in his life. But words splashed on a page for their shock value are not my style, so for me, it’s important to consider the quality of the tale. If a graphic scene appears in my tale, it’s there because it’s a watershed moment for my main character, one that forces a change in the course of their life. And, if I have done it right, each scene will intrigue the reader and challenge them, making them want to read more.

In a book, romance must have a reason for being depicted in graphic detail or it’s not interesting to me. Also, adventure must have some sort of some unattainable goal whether it is love or an object.

I like to look back at history, to see what it was about some tales that have kept the interest of readers, not just for years, but for centuries. What do these tales embody that new works should also have, to make them timeless?

Let’s examine the Arthurian Legend. From the website, www.arthurian-legend.com.

I quote: “The legend of King Arthur and the knights of the Round Table is the most powerful and enduring in the western world. King Arthur, Guinevere, and Sir Lancelot did not really exist, but their names conjure up a romantic image of gallant knights in shining armor, elegant ladies in medieval castles, heroic quests for the Holy Grail in a world of honor and romance, and the court of Camelot at the center of a royal and mystical Britain.”

There we have the essence of what I think constitutes a timeless tale: Powerful people doing heroic deeds, and finding a bit of romance along the way. Set them in intriguing surroundings and dress them in metal or velvet (or both) and voila! Now all you must do is cue the magic–bring on the wise old sorcerer.

In my own work, I want the romance to be romantic and the adventure to be death defying. Billy Ninefingers, a stand alone novel set in Huw the Bard’s world, has entered the editing phase. Billy encompasses all the above criteria for a good fantasy adventure and so far, my early readers like his slightly rough-around-the-edges style.

Depending on how the editing goes, he should launch in September 2017. The cover has been designed, and we are busily arranging promotions. Hopefully, this tale of disaster, desperation, and life gone awry will please the many fans of Huw the Bard who have wanted a sequel, as Huw does have a role in this tale.

And on that note, a more mature version of Huw will also appear in a novella later this year, Knight’s Redemption, which takes place twenty five years after the events in Huw the Bard and Billy Ninefingers.

I do a lot of reading, and if I am not reading, I am writing (or cooking or doing housework, which is another story). My hope is that at some point in every tale I write, my readers will find themselves completely involved in the tale to the exclusion of the world around them. If that happens, then I have done my job.

Three Stories We Keep Reading over and over and over

Throughout the past three years, I have been able to ascertain that there are three stories, types of stories, or story memes retold again and again which nobody is willing to welcome any longer, and henceforth should be exiled to the dustbins of hosiery! Here they are in all of their unspoken glory – and beware the variations, too. Unfortunately, I have written each of them.

1.

The love story. Emotional linkage. Moreover, two young romantics slathering over each other. Worse yet if one of them is of some special, protected category such as ghost, gremlin, zombie, homeboy, vampire, wolfboy, fairy, fairy tale meme, or absent-minded English teacher. It is enough that we recognize that people have this flaw, this need for completion, but must the rest of us read about it? see it splayed open across the grand screen? discuss it through the night on social media-  as though it were a traditional recipe for disaster? Sure, we have the so-called “anti-romance” – but isn’t that just another sheep of another color than black? Let them do what they do in private and leave the rest of us alone, thank you very much.

0201romeo

Variation: The love story set in a dystopian society where good is evil and black is white and everyone is out to get everyone else because that is the way of the world and nobody is better or worse than anyone else and the equal ones are slightly more equal than the others who are not. Often they must play a game to determine who is most equal.

Example. A Beautiful Chill is an example of the oft-repeated cliche of campus unions and reunions where Art & Letters rejoice in unyielding depravity up to the final revelation of emotional slaughter. Woe is me, sayeth the love-lorn Author. (Credit for keeping it real; that is, on Earth and in modern times.)

2.

The discovery of a new world. In this avenue I would add all the doorway, portal, gateway, wardrobe, tunnel, and wormhole stories where one of “us” goes somewhere else and woo-hoo it’s almost like where we came from (or it’s quite different) and aren’t we amazed! And what does our hero/heroine do there? Exploit the darn place to within an inch of its history! Such stories have been foisted upon us usually as warnings of what we have become or shall become if we do not pay attention, pay through the nose, or pay the first-born child of every family in debt to our fanatical financials and lords of leisure! And yet we take no heed and continue to fall into our dubious inheritance. No more! “If it ain’t here, it ain’t real,” quoth one long-lost quotation master. Who should care for a world of pure invention?

alicepopkorn-discovery

Variation: The parallel universe, the time travel story, the dystopian tale – all of them are poor representations of the main theme, us doing whatever me must, all relying on knowledge of our existing set of circumstances in order to make pun of all that we hold close to us and dreary. They mean to trick you. Smoke and mirrors, just smoke and mirrors. Mind not the poor excuse that is what you have now, for life could be far, far worse over there. Be glad you are here.

Example: The Dream Land, a lengthy tome [read ‘trilogy’] ostensibly of interdimensional [read ‘doorway, portal, etc.’] intrigue [read ‘political skulduggery’], alien romance [see above complaint], and world domination in volving two high school science nerds who grow up to become far too dangerous. Too many giant war rabbits for my liking, also. And a comet just for overkill.

3.

The medieval family clash. As a variation on ‘new worlds’ is the ‘old world’ meme. I speak here of our vainglorious return to days of yore. Either said stories are poor recreations of history mismanaged or they are faux pas histories which serve the purpose of greasepainted stages of perversity. Need we more of that? There is good reason those days of yore are done – and none too soon: we who represent the greater good of our species are simply too embarrassed by what we are capable of bestowing upon our peers. We seek atonement, forgiveness, or another round of the merry-go-round. While we may wish to relive the highlights and lowlifes, the sum total of our aspirations is a rousing return to that which never was and cannot be all in the name of trying it again for the better and falling, indeed, crashing from great dragon-borne heights to the fire-pit below!

game-of-thrones-wallpaper12121

Variation: The story that hides in a return to mythological creations and through them and their unfolding narrativity seek to impress us with the sheer drudgery of life in those days. Be glad of the life you have now and forget those of long ago. Yet such creatures and the winsome gods and goddesses themselves make for poor judges of our modern tastes. Be not fooled or made a fool!

Example: After Ilium, where the narrative necessarily parallels the standard liturgy yet is viewed through the rose-colored lenses of a neophyte (often called ‘the lucky loser’) for the purpose of excising tears from unwary readers. It’s a quite dubious in the depiction of an infamous battle: the wooden horse and the glimmering walls and the shiny gold.

 

There is a solution. Seek not for such misguided diversions but instead search out only fair and acceptable solutions to the diversions you crave, for they do exist. Break free and live a life beneath a tree, in the fields of the locust, all barefoot and squishy, with fluffy-bunny clouds overhead and the wind in your hair – like all good little munchkins who have survived remakes of wizard-themed films. And if that fails you, then there likely is little hope; you might as well embrace your day job (night, whatever) with hardy gusto. Good day to you!

solutionSign

I plead guilty, charged or not. I have dabbled in the literary arts and dared sail among the gods and goddesses of my imagination, no matter the fatigue in my wings. I saw the light above the clouds, heard the creak of heavenly gates, and yet, in the end, as imagination faltered, I flew on. And here I am . . . for what it’s worth.

“We are all little stars,” said someone on Twitter yesterday.

Spring

Primroses copyright cjjasp 2016Spring is calling!
The magnolias are blooming, and daffodils shout their amazing yellow to the world.
The long days of winter have passed, and spring has come to stay.

Warmer days lure me to my back porch,
I sit with book in hand…but spring!
Unnoticed (but not unloved) my book rests on the cushion beside me.

The songbirds nesting in my garden, the paper-wasps busy making nests in awkward places…spring is here and I must enjoy it.
Salad for dinner, perhaps on the porch.
A light sweater to wear when evening is near.

My heart is lifted and
I wish I could sing about spring!
Beautiful, long awaited,
Spring.
____________________________________________________
Spring © 2016 Connie J. Jasperson and Myrddin Publishing Group

Free Book: Hunted Heart #FREE 12/19/14

HuntedHeart cover final bit smallerHunted Heart is free for 24 hours on December 19th. Enjoy the download, and if you can leave an honest review it would be wonderful.

When Tali is hired to cut out the heart of Prince Kas, the huntress can’t refuse. Tali realizes there is no escape from the dark magic of the queen’s mirror, even though her own feelings for the prince are far too complex to understand.

 

As they try to run from their shared destiny, Tali and Kas have to rely on their wits and each other as hunter becomes prey and hearts are won and lost.

 

A genderbent Snow White for adults (18+ only.) All royalties go to SavetheChildren.org.

 

 

Hunted Heart | Adult Fantasy

HuntedHeart cover final bit smallerWhen Tali is hired to cut out the heart of Prince Kas, the huntress can’t refuse. Tali realizes there is no escape from the dark magic of the queen’s mirror, even though her own feelings for the prince are far too complex to understand.

As they try to run from their shared destiny, Tali and Kas have to rely on their wits and each other as hunter becomes prey and hearts are won and lost.

A genderbent Snow White for adults (18+ only.) All royalties go to Save the Children.

 

Available on Amazon and  Goodreads.

The Dream Land | Love, Strange Worlds, and Time Portals

How far would you go to save the love of your life? Through a portal to another world?

Sebastian, that quiet tax examiner at the corner desk in the IRS service center, carries a dark secret: once upon a time he and his high school sweetheart Gina found a rip in the universe and stepped through it to a strange world of magical beauty.

Far from being a Disney-esque playground, the world of Ghoupallesz bursts with cosmopolitan elegance, alien perversions, and political strife. Gina, the adventurous one, falls in love with the adventurous possibilities. Not Sebastian; always practical, he insists they return to Earth. Gina refuses so he goes back alone, vowing never to return. Yet he finds himself drawn back repeatedly–he calls it “research”–and often crosses paths with Gina. Sometimes he saves her, sometimes she saves him, forever soul mates.

Now years later, life on Earth hasn’t gone well for Sebastian. Then the headaches revisit him, with flashes of memories from Ghoupallesz. Gina is in trouble again, he senses, and he must, as always, save her. Meanwhile, a pair of too-curious IRS co-workers have accidently overdosed on the Elixir of Love he brought back on his last trip and the antidote exists only on Ghoupallesz. With these co-workers in tow, Sebastian returns through the interdimensional portal, fearing it may be his final adventure. He must gather his old comrades from the war, cross the towering Zet mountains, and free Gina from the Zetin warlord’s castle before her execution. Perhaps then she will stay with him.

But are his adventures to the other side real? Or are they just the dreams of a psychotic killer? That’s what the police want to know when Sebastian returns without his co-workers.

THE DREAM LAND is a genre-mashing epic of interdimensional intrigue and police procedural, a psychological thriller marbled with twisted humor, steampunk pathos, and time/space conundrums.

Find the trilogy on Amazon.

Heart Search | Love and Vampires…

One bite starts it all . . .

When Joshua Grant vanishes days before his wedding, his fiancée Remy is left with only bruises, scratch marks and a hastily written note. Heartbroken, she sets off alone to find him and begins a long journey where strange things begin to happen.

As Joshua descends into his new immortal life he indulges his thirst for blood and explores his superhuman strength and amazing new talents while becoming embroiled in coven politics which threaten to destroy him. But Remy discovers a strength of her own on her quest to bring Joshua home.

Fate toys with mortals and immortals alike, as two hearts torn apart by darkness face ordeals which test them to their limits.

Now available on Amazon for Kindle.

 

Charm City Chronicles [Book 2]: The Body War | Young love and humor

He’s 18. She’s 16. As her alpha-male, athletic boyfriend’s departure for college looms, shy, underclassman Kate worries that Michael won’t be able to resist the siren call of his promiscuous ex-girlfriend, who is prepared to do anything he desires in order to reclaim his affection. As the pressure mounts to engage in a thrilling physical relationship that she may not be ready for, haunting flashbacks resurface from the frightening assaults she endured in childhood. As her gradual seduction intensifies, Kate is torn between waiting until she is older or giving in to her own impatient desires.
When Michael’s brother tries to rekindle his own previous relationship with Kate, and a new boy from a different school falls hard for her as well, she realizes she’s in for a difficult year.
A uniquely humorous, sensual romance, The Body War will keep you reading this story of timeless, maturing young love.

Charm City Chronicles [Book 1]: Ednor Scardens | Romance and coming of age…

Growing up in an Irish Catholic neighborhood in Baltimore in the 1960’s was hard enough when everything went right. Kate Fitzgerald wasn’t that lucky.

Struggling to cope with unwanted attention from older boys and men, Kate’s childhood friendship with shy classmate Gabe Kelsey begins to blossom, but quickly becomes tangled when she falls hard for his darkly handsome older brother, Michael.

As the brothers vie for Kate’s affections, she doesn’t know how to choose between them without tearing their family apart. She looks to her girlfriends for advice, but the tragic death of a classmate brings them face-to-face with mortality, shattering their facade of invincibility.

Her dilemma deepens when a predatory priest with a hidden past arrives at Holy Sacrament School. And when she silently witnesses a frightening scene between Gabe and Fr. O’Conner, Kate unknowingly becomes O’Conner’s intended next victim.

The Last Guardian | Where werewolves and destiny meet…

Love werewolves and gorgeous hunks? Then this is the book for you!

The-Last-Guardian-Joan-HazelCJ Carson believes herself to be slightly crazy. For as long as she can remember, she has been plagued with strange dreams, migraines and an imaginary friend that never seems to go away: a voice of love and reason she has heard in her head since childhood.

Orphaned at birth, Mika Elkhart was raised by the Guardian’s of Haven to become a member of Delta Pack, the Theriontrope Foundation’s elite defense force. His was a world of death and darkness aside from his one ray of hope, CJ Carson.

The time has come for Mika to reveal his true identity and convince CJ to take her place as the Guardian of Haven, but the road to Haven is laid with danger. Without a Guardian, Haven will destroy itself and without CJ in his life, so may Mika.