Undiscovered by Dellani Oakes

First I owe a HUGE apology to Dellani Oakes for not posting this review months ago.  You see, I wrote the review and saved it in MS Word but never posted it online.  It only came to my attention when I went to Twitter and saw the words Book Review trending yesterday.  Wanting to participate, I went to Amazon but saw my review for Undiscovered by Dellani Oakes wasn’t there.  Thinking the Amazon police took it down, I went to Goodreads and nope, nothing there either.  That’s when I realized what I did or in this case, didn’t do.

By Jess via Flickr
By Jess via Flickr

I swear ever since I turned 35, it’s been all down hill memory wise.  Anyway, sorry Dellani and here’s your overdue review.

10888935_10152977143989795_4749217544005164543_nDellani Oakes is back with another romantic suspense and she brings it with Undiscovered. The story begins with a hot shot movie producer nearly gunned down on a Daytona beach in broad daylight. Despite the assassin’s attempt to stay concealed, he is spotted by a witness, Cadence Stuart. Fearing for his witness’s life, Detective Scott has to do what he can to keep her alive until the killer(s) can be found.

However things get complicated when he falls desperately in love/lust with Cadence. Things get even more sticky when his partner and ex, Vanessa Weinstein, is also assigned the case. As volatile as the situation seems, it’s the perfect solution, Vanessa, with the help of Scott’s friends, keep him in check while they all do their best to protect their only witness. As the killer closes in, secrets are revealed and the case is blown wide open when a photo reveals more about the identity of the perp.

Undiscovered is a romance novel filled with just the right amount of suspense, humor and strong characters for a discerning reader. Dellani Oakes does a magnificent job of taking us through a dangerous and often times thrilling, Daytona Beach. If you like your cops and robbers hot then this is the book for you!

Undiscovered is available now on: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo and Smashwords.

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We’re Doing It Again! The Fantastic Blog Hop Returns But Different.

fantastic blog hop busJoin us today at 9 p.m. EST (US) for the Fantastic Blog Hop Facebook Event.  Yes, we’re doing it again, and bigger than ever!  Join authors; Karen Vaughan, Dellani Oakes, Marta Moran Bishop, Joan Hazel, Ruth Davis Hays, Dominica Malcom, Joan P. Lane and Juli Morgan for fun, games and possibly Fabio?  🙂

The event will last from Thursday 9 p.m. until Friday 11:55 p.m. so come on over, and have fun.  I plan on giving away a copy of my novel Hag as well as post a few teasers for my next book, “Eternal Bond.”

In Today’s Spotlight Dellani Oakes

The Fantastic Blog Hop Tour bus is moving along and it’s making a stop in Florida (again) to pick up a woman who is responsible for encouraging my writing addiction.  I’m talking about none other than Dellani Oakes.

Dellani Oakes is an author, blogger and a Red River Writers pocaster.  Her latest sci-fi book Shakazhan is available at Second Wind Publishing.  She took time from her hectic schedule to speak with us and participate in the 10 Questions segment.

Indian Summer1. Are you a fan of the genre that you write in? Surprisingly, I am – to an extent. I write romance and I get burned out on the books where the two leading characters argue throughout the majority of the book. I want my characters to get along, fall in love, have some hot sex and fight the bad guys together. What an unusual concept!

2. Are you a pen and paper author or do you use a computer to write? Some of both, actually. If I have to go to an appointment, I take a notebook and pen. It’s impossible to find a spot to set up a laptop and I can’t type while balancing it on my lap. (I think the name laptop is a misnomer, by the way)

3. If you couldn’t write what would you be doing instead? If I’m not writing, I’m reading or watching Netflix. I watch WAY too many movies and TV shows when I get bored. I hibernate in the summer because I can’t stand the heat – brilliant of me to live in Florida! I love to cook, though I hate planning meals, and I love digging around doing research for my books.

4. What about this business surprised you the most? I would have to say the amount of marketing shocked me. I’m not good at talking myself up, but if I don’t, I don’t sell books. It took me a very long time to hit on an approach I can handle. It takes far more time than I like, but if I don’t do it, no one else will.

5. Do you blog? I do indeed! I have Writer’s Sanctuary – where I am hosting my guests for Fantastic Blog Hop. http://writersanctuary.blogspot.com/ I also have http://dellanioakes.wordpress.com/

6. Are you on social media? Do you enjoy it? I am on Facebook and always welcome new friends and fans https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dellani-Oakes/98897574794 I enjoy my time there and count it towards my marketing time. A wise author friend told me once that “You don’t market your books, you market yourself”. In other words, you reach out, get to know people and treat them as friends, not customers. People are far more likely to buy a new book a friend wrote than that of a complete stranger. Be friendly, genuine and honest. It takes time, but it will pay off in the long run.

7. The house is on fire, which do you save, your laptop or your Lone Wolfbook collection? Neither. I would save my flashdrives. All my books are on them. If my computer melted or my books went up in smoke, I can replace them. If I lost my flashdrive, I might as well die because my books would die with them.

8. The publishing industry is changing, do you think this is good or bad time for authors? In some ways, it’s great! There are opportunities for authors to publish their own work. However, there are so many other books out there, it makes it much harder to get recognition and build a following.

9. How do you promote your books? I do two shows month on Blog Talk Radio: Dellani’s Tea Time – every 2nd Monday and What’s Write for Me every 4th Wednesday. I chat with other authors about their work, giving each of us a bit of exposure. I have my blogs where I post fairly regularly. In addition to the two above, I have Dellani’s Choice which is my review site. http://dellanischoice.wordpress.com/ I also post the 17th of every month on my publisher’s website: http://secondwindpub.wordpress.com/ In addition to all this, I am on Facebook, getting to know people and posting about my shows & books. The main thing that seems to have made a bigger difference, is Twitter. With the help of a buffer program, I can schedule my tweets for select hours during the day. I have also been able to link my blog posts so that they show up automatically on other sites. That has been a godsend and I wish it had been around 5 years ago when I started!

10. Your editor says you have to kill a character, which one would get the ax? Hmm…. If we’re talking about a main character, I’d have to create one with the editor’s name and brutally murder it. Not that any of my editors would do that – they are wonderful people. If they actually suggested that, there would have to be a really good reason. If it worked for the betterment of the book, I would do it – crying the entire time.

Excerpt from Shakazhan

Shakazhan By Dellani Oakes
Picking up where Lone Wolf ends, Shakazhan follows the further adventures of Wil VanLipsig and Matilda Dulac. Having chased the evil John Riley to a far off planet known as Iyundo, they find themselves once more confronted with a problem of John’s making. However, this time they have powerful allies – the Kindred. These people put them in touch with a race of sentient ships. In the following excerpt, Wil and Matilda meet their ship for the first time.
       The cavern they entered dwarfed the other one. The ships inside were enormous. Flotilla and Hannibal could fit in there easily with room to spare. The design was unlike anything Wil had ever seen. The ships were shaped like horizontal teardrops, the narrow end foremost and the full end aft. The colors ranged from dull gray to a lustrous blue. The hulls shifted color as they walked by, particularly if Wil and Matilda spoke or touched them.
Wil laid his hand on one. It throbbed like a gigantic heart. To their right, a green light flashed rapidly, accompanied with odd, piercing, urgent sounds. The High Elder motioned them to follow. It took several minutes, but soon they were close enough to see blue and red and amber yellow had joined the display.
“Wil, I think it’s singing to us! Listen!” Matilda approached, mesmerized.
The ship was a deep, rich peacock blue. Larger than those below, it dwarfed any ship Wil had seen. Even the huge Guild ore transports weren’t this big. He felt like an ant in comparison.
Reaching up to the ship, Matilda’s hand smoothed the side. “It is singing!”
The tune changed when she touched it. Removing her hand, she heard the sounds modulate yet again. She stroked the hull of the ship, the colors shifted, altered and realigned themselves following the movement of her hand. A contented purr vibrated under her palm.
“Wil, it’s alive! Feel it!”
She grabbed his hand before he could pull away. Their two left hands brushed the hull together, hers atop his. The skin of the ship glowed a vibrant red, changing gradually to orange, flickered to dark yellow, settling to blue again.
Wil laid both his hands beside each other, leaning against the ship, placing his cheek to the side. As he moved back from it, the imprint of the outline of his face and hands remained for a moment, gradually receding.
“By God, Matilda, you’re right!”
The smiles of Felix and the High Elder confirmed their suspicions.
“I’ve heard legends of ships like this, but never expected to see one! This is incredible!”
Grabbing Matilda’s hand, Wil dragged her around the side of the ship, looking for an opening. About twenty feet from the point, a doorway appeared where none had been before. Steps descended, the ship molding them from its skin, forming depressions for their feet. They entered excitedly. Moments later, Felix, The High Elder and Aisulov joined them.
The sight greeting their eyes was one they hardly expected. The inside was ultra high tech, the instrumentation so advanced, they could only imagine what most of it was. The consoles had an Art Nouveau feel, with flowing lines and organic shapes. Here too, the colors melded and shifted.
“She’s beautiful!” Matilda’s eyes glowed happily as she walked around.

Bio

Dellani OakesWhen she moved to Florida, Dellani Oakes had no idea the history was so rich and fascinating. Visiting St. Augustine for the first time, she felt the allure of the country’s oldest city. She decided then to write a story based there. It wasn’t until nearly twelve years later that Indian Summer took its final form.
Dellani is a happily married mother of four, substitute teacher and former English teacher. When she isn’t being one of the above, she is an avid writer, spending every possible moment immersed in her other worlds.
She has also written a series of futuristic romance novels, contemporary romances and short stories. Dellani’s interests include reading, going to the beach, listening to all kinds of music and cooking.

 

The Birth of a Legend: Yes, We Ride Again

fantastic blog hop bus

Birth of a Legend

By Dellani Oakes: Bus Driver

The Fantastic Blog Hop was born out of desperation in March of 2013. A few broke authors got together and decided to try their hands at organizing a blog tour for themselves. And so the Fantastic Blog Hop came to be. We began our maiden voyage in April of 2013.

Never let it be said that we didn’t know what we were doing. (We didn’t, but never let it be said!) We jumped in with both feet, only to sink into the muck up to our necks. We’re still digging our way out.

The hop was fun and moderately successful, so we thought we’d try it again, only this time with a bigger group. In addition to our first Fantastic Blog Hoppers: Rachel Rueben, Karen Vaughan, Ruth Davis Hays, Crimson Kildare, Kat Marlow & Dellani Oakes, we’ve added Juli Page Morgan, Stephanie Hussey, Kristen Duvall & Karina Gioertz.

We’re having fun getting to know one another and we hope you’ll enjoy getting to know us too. The big, yellow bus is gassed up and ready to roam. The tour starts on August 15th. Be watching for messages about the Fantastic Blog Hop and catch a ride on the big, yellow bus as we travel North America.

 

Excerpt From Lone Wolf By Dellani Oakes

fantastic blog hop bus

Today, the Fantastic Blog Hop Tour pulls into Daytona Florida, where we meet Dellani Oakes, romance novelist, blogger, and podcaster.  Shew!  I’m exhausted just saying it all!  🙂  Anyways, let’s get down to business, I promised excerpts and that’s exactly what you’ll get.  Ladies and gentlemen, without further ado, Dellani Oakes’ Sci-Fi novel, “Lone Wolf.”

Once he was up and dressed, Marc was all business. It seemed odd for him to be so professional when they had just been so intimate, but she knew something was bothering him.

Lone WolfAs Matilda followed Marc to the docking bay where the ship was locking on, she noticed he was armed. The energy weapon he wore was hardly standard Guild issue. On the maximum setting, it could take down a 300 pound man, putting a sizable hole in him.

“Expecting an army? You can kill a xar beast with one of those.”

“I wish I had something bigger. If I order you to fire, Commander, you fire. No questions. Is that clear?”

“Yes, sir.”

Marc opened the door to the docking bay. The other ship had attached and the airlock was pressurizing. As the door spiraled open, Matilda sensed a shudder pass through Marc. He raised his weapon, covering the entrance.

Slowly, with a casual air, a man entered the airlock. Nearly as tall as Marc, he was leaner of build. His curly, dark brown hair fell to his shoulders. He stood still while Rubee scanned his identification tag before releasing the force shield in front of him.

He wore a black eye patch over his left eye and a scar ran from his left temple to the corner of his lips. It was an old scar, worn and somewhat sunken. A slight stubble of beard shaded the lower half of his face, all but the scar line, leaving a pale crescent in the dark. His uncovered eye glittered, black and dangerous in his ruggedly handsome face. Holding his arms from his sides, he waited as Rubee scanned him for weapons. Finding none, she gave clearance for him to pass.

He stepped forward, lighting a dark, thin object. The pungent odor of a cheroot filled the confined space. Squinting past the smoke, he gazed into Marc’s eyes. Marc’s weapon remained pointed at the other man’s head, his calm expression strangely predatory.

Their visitor sized Matilda up with a glance, dismissing her as non-threatening. He puffed on his cheroot thoughtfully. A crooked grin cracked his face in half, the scar pulling his left lip up at an odd angle.

“Marc, it’s been a long time.” He held out his hand.

Marc remained aloof, not taking his eyes off the visitor, lowering his weapon or acknowledging the proffered hand.

“Kind of a cold reception, isn’t it?” His voice was rasping and low.

The smile was replaced by a slight frown, a hint of sadness in the obsidian eye. Then the same placid expression took its place. Nothing in Marc’s face betrayed what he was thinking or feeling.

Marc spoke calmly. “Commander Dulac, please show Colonel VanLipsig to the lounge.”

“Of course, sir.” Looking puzzled, she did as he asked, feeling his eyes on her.

Marc followed, covering the man from the rear. When they had seated themselves, Matilda ordered three cups of joe from the synthunit. Marc kept his weapon out on his knee with his hand resting upon it. The other fellow leaned back, seemingly unconcerned and at ease. Taking a sip of the joe, he grimaced, glancing down at his cup before matching his gaze with Marc’s.

“I know we parted under difficult circumstances, but is this really necessary? I’m here to do a job, nothing more.” He carefully kept his hands in plain view, moving slowly, talking with deliberate ease.

Marc looked at him blankly. “I thought you were dead, Wil.”

VanLipsig nodded slowly, thoughtfully. “You were sure you killed me.” His voice was flat, toneless, unemotional. He shrugged casually, tilting his head to the left. “I got better.” There was a flash of a chilling smile.

“The reports….”

       “The reports of my death were greatly exaggerated,” VanLipsig quipped, dark eye glittering mischievously.

Marc’s fist dented the metal table with a furious blow. “Dammit, Wil! Can’t you stay dead?”

VanLipsig threw back his head, laughing caustically. The laugh became a long, high pitched, chilling howl. Matilda felt a shiver run through her to the very bone. She did her best not to show it, but a subtle shift of her bearing betrayed her. His gaze penetrated her soul, laying it bare, finding it wanting.

“Aren’t you going to introduce me to the lady, Marc?”

“No.”

Marc hid his anger, but Matilda knew he was furious. His attitude toward VanLipsig was puzzling. They seemed to have known one another for years, obviously parting on less than amicable terms. Though VanLipsig seemed to harbor no ill will, Marc certainly did.

“May I present myself, ma’am? I’m Colonel Wilhelm VanLipsig, also known as the Lone Wolf. Perhaps you’ve heard of me?” He attempted to look humble. “Pleased to make your acquaintance.” His glance flicked to her name tag and insignia, dark eye lingering hungrily on her chest. “Commander Dulac.” His mouth formed the words, enjoying the feel of the consonants on his tongue.

He waited patiently for a response. Getting none, his eye locked with hers, curious, intrigued. “Do you speak?”

Matilda studied him quizzically, raising an eyebrow. “There seemed little to say.”

Wil chuckled deep in his throat. It was a seductively menacing sound. He put his feet up on the table between them, relaxed, but all business.

“So, what’s this load I’m supposed to pick up?”

Matilda glanced at Marc, his blank face betraying nothing. He gave no indication that he was going to speak, so she took over the conversation.

“Trimagnite.”

VanLipsig, who was staring openly at her full breasts, raised an eyebrow. He grinned wolfishly, dragging his gaze to meet hers.

“Really? Nasty stuff.” He sounded almost gleeful.”How pure?”

She met his eyes with a challenge as his smile became predatory. Her personal scanner showed him the basic specs. His brow furrowed slightly as he read, then he handed it back to her, whistling softly in surprise.

“Show me the full scan.” All joking aside, he stood expectantly.

Matilda ushered VanLipsig to a console and typed in the commands. He leaned over her right shoulder, his face mere inches from hers. His scent tantalized her. It was  disconcerting, made all the more disturbing because he was dangerously handsome, well built, virile, wickedly seductive and extremely close. Forcing herself to look back at the screen, she felt his warm breath on her neck, tickling her skin in a very sensuous way.

He leaned forward, tapping the console, watching as the view and number readout changed. The very air between them was charged with energy. His shoulder brushed hers from behind, making her shiver

VanLipsig put his hand on her shoulder, brushing her neck slightly with his thumb, leaning in as if to kiss her. He checked himself abruptly, nearly brushing her ear with his lips. His breath stirred wisps of hair, tickling her neck.

“I’m sorry, Commander. Are you cold?” His raspy voice seemed loud, although he whispered.

She ducked out from under his arm, stepping aside. “No, I’m fine. Really. Thank you.”

Marc stood a few feet away, his eyes on the other man, saying nothing. The muscle in his jaw worked rapidly, bulging and relaxing as he fought for control.

Wil seemed unaware of them both as he read the screen, making mental calculations; sensuous lips moving as he spoke to himself. He nodded, clearing the screen, turning to them with a dazzling smile.

“No problem,” his smile broadened, but didn’t reach his eye. “I’ll just get my bots to work, then.”

He made for the door, but Marc stopped him with a powerful arm across his chest. Wil halted, pressing aggressively against Marc’s elbow.

“Old man, you know that’s dangerous.” Wil’s body stiffened defensively.

Marc glared at him, cold fury erupting. “By God, Wil! I killed you, you bastard!” Marc pounded the table next to him, scattering the cups of joe.

Wil didn’t even blink. “I told you, I got better.”

Marc’s huge fist shot out suddenly from shoulder height, all his weight behind it. Wil caught Marc’s fist, twisting up and away from his jaw, forcing Marc’s arm to bend back on itself, elbow by his ear.

“Don’t make me do this, Marc. ”

Wil held Marc’s arm, their muscles swelling and knotting as they fought for control. Marc tried to free himself from the other man’s unyielding grasp. Suddenly changing tactics, he swung at Wil with his left hand. With an audible crack, his enormous fist connected with Wil’s face. Neither man seemed to notice. Marc drew back, swinging again from the left.

Wil dropped Marc’s right hand in order to block the blow. He grabbed Marc’s arm in an elbow lock. Using the force of the attack, he spun Marc to face him, slamming his fist into Marc’s abdomen.

Instead of recoiling from the blow, Marc moved in, utilizing Wil’s momentum and his own greater weight, to put his opponent off balance. He threw Wil to the floor, hitting him with a bone grinding body slam.

Wil exhaled sharply as he grappled with one hand in Marc’s hair. Wil forced Marc’s head back at an odd angle. Marc’s face grew dark red as he gasped for breath.

Matilda reacted instinctively, her weapon trained on Wil automatically. Stance defiant, her eyes glittered with dark fire.

“Let him go,” she spoke quietly, teeth clenched.

Wil held Marc’s head, but stopped twisting.

“Why don’t you put the gun down, Ma’am, before you hurt yourself?”

Wil’s face registered momentary surprise when she didn’t immediately comply. Instead, her grip shifted on the weapon, her aim true, right between his eyes. The astonishment was quickly replaced by a placid expression. VanLipsig allowed himself a glance in her direction. Her face held a determination equal to his own. Slowly, he let go of Marc, who straightened up, shaking his head.

“Move away from him.”

VanLipsig stood in one fluid motion, taking two steps back. His hands were shoulder height, out from his body. He made no sudden movements, his demeanor passive.

“Now would one of you testosterone glutted males tell me what the hell is going on?” Her dark eyes flashed dangerously.

Lone Wolf is available through Second Wind Publishing as well as Amazon, and Barnes and Noble

About Dellani Oakes:

DellaniDellani Oakes doesn’t claim to be an expert on anything, but she has a lot of experience making something out of nothing. Thrown into the world of publishing four years ago, she found that trying to promote her work was the hardest part of being an author. Since then, she’s branched out, lost her inhibitions and faced the publishing world head on.

Dellani once told her publisher that she had enough books, finished & unfinished, to keep him busy for the next 10 years. He didn’t believe her, but he should have. Two novels, Indian Summer and Lone Wolf are published by Second Wind Publishing, but she has 42 finished romance novels and at least that many (she won’t count them) that are still in the works.

One of the 42, a romantic suspense, The Ninja Tattoo, came out September 24th from Tirgearr Publishing. The sequel to Lone Wolf, Shakazhan, is coming soon from Second Wind.

Dellani Oakes is a former A.P. English teacher, photo-journalist. She’s an avid reader & reviews the work of others. She hosts two shows for the Red River Radio Network – Dellani’s Tea Time the second Monday of each month, @ 4:00 PM Eastern and What’s Write for Me, every fourth Wednesday @ 3:00 PM Eastern on Blog Talk Radio.

Dellani Oakes WordPress site http://dellanioakes.wordpress.com

Writer’s Sanctuary http://writersanctuary.blogspot.com

Dellani’s Choice Book Reviews http://dellanischoice.wordpress.com

The Ninja Tattoo http://theninjatattoo.wordpress.com

Indian Summer http://indiansummerbydellanioakes.wordpress.com

Lone Wolf http://lonewoldbydellanioakes.wordpress.com

Look for Dellani Oakes on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter & Good Reads, among others.

Dulcet By Dellani Oakes: A Review

Dulcet By Dellani Oakes
Dulcet By Dellani Oakes

Recently, I tried to get back into romance novels and was disappointed by the same ol, tired stories.  But I met an interesting author by the name of Dellani Oakes, who has breathed new life into a very stuffy genre.  In her newest release, “Dulcet” Dellani brings us the story of Cooper, a newly born again Christian with a sexually torrid past.  Cooper, who is now comfortably at home in church finds himself in danger of backsliding when he meets Gloria, the church’s newest cantor.  Instantly attracted, he fears the ghosts of his past pulling him back to his old womanizing ways.

None of this goes unnoticed by several of his friends and church family who are concerned for Cooper as well as for Gloria’s innocence.   He is at odds with his old friend and spiritual mentor Barry– better known as Father Barry.  Cooper is feeling like he’s being judge by those around him and to be honest, he is.  What Cooper doesn’t know is that they only have his best interests at heart but it’s hard for him to see that because he’s still a wounded man.  His life took a tragic turn in college when his fiance was killed in a car accident.  This led to his inevitable drinking and womanizing.  But Cooper’s new found comfort in church changes, when he starts unofficially dating Gloria.

However, not everything is as it seems, as it’s not only Cooper with secrets and a past.  Gloria has a confession of her own and it will throw everyone for a loop!

Although a Christian themed romance novel, Dulcet is not your typical Christian book.  Don’t let that pretty cover fool you.  It does have strong language and adult themes in it.  The reason why I loved this romance novel is because the main character Cooper, although a new Christian, has issues, real ones.  Unlike your typical Christian romance where nothing happens and nobody says anything “unspiritual” this book has characters that are relatable and seriously flawed.  We all know a Cooper, or have one in our family.

Dulcet, I believe will having romance fans laughing, crying and wondering what the heck!?!  Dellani Oakes did a marvelous job with creating characters that are quirky and loveable.  Having said that, I thoroughly enjoyed the book, and believe if you miss real romance novels, then you definitely need to give Dulcet a try.

I give Dulcet 5 stars ★★★★★