Cover Reveal: DARKNESS SHIFTING by Sarah L. Blair

I’m genuinely thrilled to be taking part in the cover reveal for Sarah L. Blair’s debut novel, Darkness Shifting! Sarah is not only one of my amazing critique partners, she also happens to be an incredible friend and a seriously talented writer.

Darkness Shifting is an urban fantasy novel with a fabulous cast of characters and a gripping story that will keep you turning the page. It will be available for purchase July 1, 2016. You can read more about the novel below (including an excerpt!), but first, here’s the gorgeous cover:

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Cover Credit: Vania Stoyanova

Darkness Shifting is the first book in the Tides of Darkness Series.

Paranormal Investigator, Sidney Lake doesn’t jump at shadows. The weird stuff is her jurisdiction. When the mangled body of a supposedly extinct creature turns up in New York City’s subway system, she’s number one on the Medical Examiner’s speed dial.

But this case hits too close to home when clues point her toward the truth about her parents’ brutal murder twelve years ago. Her boss Mitchell Harris, questions whether she should continue to investigate. However, Sidney insists on facing her greatest fears and putting her parents’ memory to rest once and for all.

What she uncovers sheds a light on secrets that reach further into the darkness than she ever wanted to go… and leads her to a future she never imagined.

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Sarah L. Blair earned a BA in Creative Writing from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. While spending a semester abroad at Swansea University in Wales she traveled to nearby Bath and Glastonbury often, drawing inspiration for her writing from the myths and legends surrounding the area. Sarah now resides just north of Atlanta, Georgia with her husband, their two children, and chihuahua. While writing is her first passion, she also enjoys sewing, tater tots, catching up on her teetering TBR pile, and hanging out on her porch drinking sweet tea.

 

You can find Sarah around the web on Twitter: @SarahLBlair, Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/sarahlblair, or visit her new website: http://www.sarahlblair.com

Author Photo Credit: James Hicks

Excerpt:

A door at the back of the room next to the fireplace opened before Mitch could answer. The man who emerged wasn’t quite as tall as Mitch, but as soon as he stepped through the door, his presence seemed to expand to fill the enormous space.

Sidney didn’t need to be introduced. It was very clear who this man was.

At first glance, his shoulder length hair was jet black, but when he stepped into the light it picked up gold and orange tones from the fire and she saw that it was actually a very dark brown. It reminded her of pure chocolate falling in loose waves around his square face, ending in stark contrast with the edge of his pristine, white collar.

His eyes were the same dark liquid brown as his hair. She could tell the second she met his gaze that this man didn’t feel the need to impress anyone. His deep set eyes were soft, holding a hint of amusement, as if he didn’t have to think about what she might do or say because he already knew.

“I apologize for the wait. Mitchell, it’s good to see you again.” The voice that came out of his mouth was unexpected and familiar at the same time. It sounded British, but it was more rugged than the Queen’s English.

In all her years at boarding school in the UK, she hadn’t heard anything like it. It held lilting notes of Welsh, but there were gruff hints of a Highland brogue in there as well. She recalled hearing it at one point in the hospital, but she didn’t remember actually meeting him.

The men shook hands as if they’d been pals in grade school.

Sidney stayed behind Mitch, not wanting to draw attention to herself. She could see Dimitrius better up close and noticed that his nose had the smallest rise along the middle of the bridge; it hadn’t healed properly after a break. A slight cleft cut through his chin. He had a ragged scar at the edge of his hairline, and another one on the left side of his neck below his ear that disappeared under the back of his collar.

The top two buttons of his shirt had been left undone, as if he intended to draw her gaze downward. He wasn’t wearing an undershirt, so it was easy to see the outline of his well-toned chest and the tarnished silver pendant that rested right below the dip of his collarbone, tied to his neck with a narrow leather strap. It was some kind of old coin or a stamped crest.

Now that he was even closer, the scent evolved into something more distinct; Sidney picked out the smell of horses, sweat, blood, even the smoky flavor of fire and pitch.

Battle.

He smelled like a warrior.

“Ms. Lake, at last we meet.” That voice again, softer and gentler than what a battle-hardened warrior should sound like. She wanted to curl up and listen to him read page after page of Internet search results. “I’ve heard wonderful things about you.”

“I’m sure the chief was exaggerating.” It was like being sucked into a whirlpool and Mitch had suddenly become her safety net. Knowing he was right there with the line of his body pressed against hers made her feel more grounded.

“On the contrary…“Dimitrius gave her an unabashed head-to-toe assessment. He offered his hand. She didn’t want to take it, but she couldn’t be rude.

She returned the handshake much more firmly than she’d done with his assistant. It was the same grip she used to make Williams go weak in the knees and beg for mercy when she was mad at him.

It had no effect whatsoever on Dimitrius. Instead, she felt what could only be described as electricity, an actual current running between them where their skin touched. His eyes narrowed, and she wondered if he felt it too.

“He hasn’t done you justice at all,” he said. “Dimitrius Arturus Roman, at your service.”

He leaned forward at the waist and raised her hand toward his mouth, keeping his eyes locked on hers. A whisper of something brushed across her fingers, like an invisible string wrapping around her hand, curling its way up her wrist. She felt his pulse in her palm, saw it throbbing at his neck millimeters from the edge of the scar. She wanted to lick her tongue over it to find out if he tasted as good as he smelled.

That last thought brought her back to herself. She jerked her hand away before he could touch his lips to her skin. It all happened in an instant. Dimitrius stood there, tilted forward holding nothing but air.