The Night Beat by Gini Koch

Finished: January 22, 2019

So today is Gini Koch’s birthday, and I thought writing up my review for her action-packed Urban Fantasy novel, The Night Beat, was a great way to celebrate!

My Review:

This book is an incredible roller coaster ride of action, monsters, and special guests. Yes, this book features such surprises as H.P. Lovecraft, Edgar Allen Poe, and (no, I’m not joking) Queen singer Freddie Mercury. That should give you a good idea of the kind of wacky adventures that ensure and the kind of world you’re jumping into.

Victoria Wolfe is an undercover werewolf who works as a police officer to protect Prosaic City. What starts out as fighting an unspeakable monster that’s taking out the city’s unfortunates turns into a fight bigger than heaven and hell. It’s pulpy, it’s hilarious, and it’s intense from page one to the end. I absolutely loved it and am looking forward to her next book!

What I consider a 5-star book:

  1. Is it a fun read? Absolutely! This book is like a fantastic fever dream of your favorite horror and action films.
  2. Would you recommend it to others? If you enjoy fast-paced, pulpy stories with a heavy dose of intricate world-building and a slew of inhuman characters, then yes!
  3. Does it stick with you? This book is so unique and unusual that it definitely sticks with you. There’s just nothing quite like it.

My overall rating: 5/5

The She-Wolf of Kanta, Now on Audible!

I’m so excited to be able to announce that The She-Wolf of Kanta is now available on audiobook through Audible! It’s read by the amazing actress, Kyra McFarland, who really knows how to bring these characters to life. The sample I listened to just blew me away and I can’t wait to hear how she brought the rest of these characters to life.

I love audiobooks. Ever since I bit the bullet and got into Audible last year, I’ve been tearing through my To-Read list. I’m well on my way to reaching my Goodreads Reading Challenge for this year. I listen to books on my daily work commute, while I’m at the gym, and sometimes when I’m doing the dishes. Being able to do things while I listen to books has expanded my genre interests so much. Since I do the subscription every few months and get a free credit which is essentially a free book, I’ve tried books I never thought I would. So you can imagine how thrilled I was that a book that I wrote is now available there!

It’s one of those things you think would be fantastic to happen, but figure it’ll never happen to you – and yet here I am. I worked closely with Kyra and Olivia (my publisher over at Radiant Crown Publishing) throughout the process. Both were very supportive of the piece and worked hard to make sure it was the best it could be. I’m so grateful to both of their help!

If you don’t have an Audible subscription, no worries, you can download it for less than $5 on the site. It’s almost as cheap as the eBook version!

Mercy has always dreamed of becoming a werewolf trapper like her father. In Kanta, one must learn how to survive one way or another. A dark-skinned, blue-eyed young beauty, Mercy understands that she brings out the beast in monsters and men. When a routine werewolf delivery turns into a vicious assault from a pair of human traffickers, Mercy’s life changes forever. Somehow she must endure in a dangerous city where women and werewolves are hunted.

Book Signing at Story On The Square

I’m going to be having my first author reading!

If you live in the Atlanta area, come support a local indie bookstore (that in a few months will also be a bar). I’ll be doing a reading from The She-Wolf of Kanta followed by a Q&A and, of course, book signings!

Come in your werewolf inspired clothes – or just go full-out werewolf! – for a chance to win a signed author copy, a Story On The Square giftcard, and other goodies!

The event is on June 23rd from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM. It *may* be livestreamed depending on the internet connection, but I can’t make any promises. Make sure you follow me on Facebook or Instagram to be able to watch!

Release Day, Giveaways, and an Excerpt!

I’m so excited to celebrate my book birthday with all of you! This YA Dark Fantasy novella is now available in ebook, paperback, and audiobook. You can find it at:

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

iBooks

Google Play

As part of the Launch Party over on Facebook today, you can read the first section of The She-Wolf of Kanta below. Be sure to drop by, we’ll be doing giveaways and talking about werewolves all day – including a beautiful She-Wolf bracelet, a wolf paw print pin, and a signed copy.

If you enjoyed reading this, please let me know and share with your friends! It’s the release day and I hope to get this novella out to as many werewolf-loving YA readers as possible.

 

First Section from

The She-Wolf of Kanta

 

I

 

The crickets were deafening as moonlight streamed down through the branches. Mercy’s pulse rang in her ears and her entire body was tense. Her left calf kept cramping up, but she ignored it. A moment’s delay when the beast showed its face could mean a gory death. She couldn’t fail tonight, not after months of practice. Behind her she knew Father was watching, and she wondered if he felt as nervous. The forest was deceptively peaceful, but Father said they were close, and that if she remembered her training, she could hear them, too.

She got into position in the middle of the clearing with her foot poised above the pedal switch. She tried to calm her mind and focus. The clamor of crickets surrounded them, but that was merely wrapping the noises beneath. She tried to listen closer. She heard an owl in a tree, her father’s raspy breaths, and the heavy, padding paws of the beast stalking her. Her mouth was dry and her body began to tremble. Father had said she would panic, that it was a normal reaction to facing one in the wild for the first time. That was the deciding moment, he had said. She needed to keep control of herself, but that was so much easier when she knew they weren’t near, when she knew it was safe.

Then she saw it. Through a thick patch of bushes, a pair of yellow eyes caught the moonlight and locked on to hers. Mercy froze. It was said when you looked into a werewolf’s eyes, you felt how easy it would be to become its prey. Facing one required both a strong mind and a strong body. It was as much a mind game as a physical one, and never had Mercy felt so small and insignificant. She had a very sensible and primal urge to run away. There was no way to prepare for that moment, Father had told her. That was the gamble of going trapping to begin with, whether or not you would be able to contain the urge to flee. She felt her legs shake but forced herself to stay rooted to the spot. If she ran, both she and her father could be torn apart.

When the werewolf lunged forward, the only thing Mercy could think of was how big it was. The careful planning she and Father had done over the past months was suddenly forgotten, and her mind went blank. When the creature leapt into the air, its arms out to its sides and its black claws extended, she went rigid with terror. All she could do was stare and gape and be fascinated by the size of it. She forgot the warnings, she forgot everything, until her father cried out behind her.

“Mercy!”

He cocked the gun and pulled her free from her trance. If he shot it, the beast was useless, and their work wasted. She slammed her heel down on the switch and jumped backward just as the beast landed. Four long black claws sliced at her back as she turned on her heel. She winced but didn’t slow down. Five seconds, Father had said. That was all the time she had before she was caged in with the beast. She locked her eyes on the branch she had put down as a marker and forced her legs to move. It was actually easier when she didn’t have to look the beast in the eye. Mercy leapt at the last moment, clearing the branch. Behind her she heard the cage hit the ground and the metal pin lock into place.

The werewolf was snarling, biting at its cage, its teeth making tiny indentions in the metal. The cage always made them hunch down so they looked smaller.

She turned to her father. “I’m glad you didn’t shoot.”

He was standing with his rifle held out, still aiming at the frantic, caged werewolf. “You were slow.”

She took a deep breath to get her body to stop shaking. “I panicked.”

He nodded and finally relaxed his arms and lowered the gun. “I warned you about that.” He went to the front of his truck and pulled out a long tube and a metal dart. Mercy had crafted many of them over the years, from whatever metal scraps they could find. The dart’s long metal tip was about three inches long, made to penetrate any part of the beast’s body. He loaded the dart and walked up to the cage. The werewolf within snarled and backed away, almost as if it knew what was coming. Father held up the tube, and with a single puff of air struck the beast in the leg. It let out a long, lonely howl and slumped to the floor. Its eyes drooped and a bit of saliva dripped down between a pair of sharp canines.

“It works fast, doesn’t it?” she whispered.

“You move that slow again, you’ll get worse than a few cuts on your back. You’ll be dead, or worse, one of them.” His blue eyes were hard as he glared at her. “I’d hate to have to hunt you down, Mercy.”

She didn’t look away or flinch under his gaze. “I know. It won’t happen again.”

He walked around the cage until he was near the beast’s rear then cursed under his breath.

“What is it?”

“It’s a female. I thought for sure you would have attracted a male, but I guess you’re too young for that still.”

Mercy felt a pang of frustration at her father’s words. She wasn’t technically a woman yet, and that would hamper her usefulness as bait. Male werewolves were drawn to women, not little girls. She didn’t understand why a female werewolf would come for her, though she supposed that considering how the males were preferred, there were probably more females left in the forest. Females were worth far less though.

Father slammed the side of the cage and crouched down to eye the beast with a curl of his lip. “If I had known it was female, I wouldn’t have wasted a dart on it. I should have checked first.” The werewolf rolled its eyes lazily to look in his direction.

Mercy put a hand to her father’s shoulder. “It’s alright. Maybe we can still bring her in. Surely somebody can use her.”

He sighed and got to his feet. “I doubt it, but I guess since I’ve already wasted the money, it couldn’t hurt to try.” He motioned to the leather straps hooked on to the tail end of the truck, and the ramp they would use to pull the beast into the truck bed. “Strap her up. We’ll drag her worthless ass in.”

Mercy nodded and set to work.

Pre-Orders, a Giveaway, and a Festival!

It’s been quite a busy time for The She-Wolf of Kanta lately! We had a blog tour a few weeks back and if you check out the header up top, you’ll notice that the reviews have been just shining for Mercy and her werewolf adventure. I’ve been so pleased with how much people love her story and I’m so excited for my readers to learn about her world.

If you’re not sure, what I’m talking about, then you may want to sign up for my newsletter so you’ll be the first to find out about any official appearances this year. Like I’ve said before, there’s a LOT going on right now.

First up, Pre-Orders are OPEN for SWoK! I was fortunate enough to see the previews for the print copy, and let me tell you, they are simply gorgeous. The werewolf motif throughout would be enough to get me to buy it even if it wasn’t my book, being the werewolf fan I am. It’s just THAT good.

If you missed my posts on Facebook/Instagram/Twitter, there is a Giveaway right now for SWoK along with an Amazon gift card. Currently there are over 2,000 people who have signed up, but 27 copies will be given away, so the odds aren’t too bad!

Finally, I will be attending the Geranium Festival this year in McDonough, GA. Considering that I’ve attended it ever since I was a kid, it’s crazy that I’ll be a vendor there this year. I’ve joined forces with several other artists, including my sister MorbidSmile, to sell a variety things from knitting work to art prints, and of course my novella SWoK. And since folks have asked me, I WILL be signing copies there upon request.

Whew! So many updates and I’m still a little under two months away from release day. Did I mention that the recording for the audiobook has also begun? Guys, I can’t express how excited I am. As an author, it’s terribly ironic, I know.