Thursday, February 22, 2018

At Last, Some Book Release News!



BOOK RELEASE NEWS

It's been a long year...and while my blog posts have been few and far between, my writing has kept me exceptionally busy. Between attending the Toronto International Film Festival again last fall, meeting with movie bigwigs, directors and producers, to discuss the Fire And Ice film...



...Plus releasing my first illustrated children's book (Fairy Wishes 1-2-3)



...AND the next installment of the Faerie Song Saga, (Melt) well let's just say it was a very hectic year.


But I'm very excited to announce that MELT is finally up for pre-order on Amazon. (Nook and Kobo fans, sit tight) You can grab a copy HERE. And to wet your appetite a little, here's a SNEAK PEEK  at Chapter One:



BEFORE

I was there that day. The day the queen of Mythlandria died. I saw what my mother did to her, the poison she used to stain her heart. And I saw the way she manipulated the queen’s young son, Adrius Thanduir of the Elyssium Court, into swearing an oath to her. A boy only a few years older than I was at the time, sworn into an allegiance he couldn’t possibly have understood in the face of such grief.
I didn’t understand it myself. I only knew I hated and feared my mother for it. For making the small boy weep so silently. So uncontrollably. For days on end, until they found him sobbing half-frozen tears, cold and covered with snow, curled up next to his dead mother.
She was responsible. My mother. Queen of the Witches. Only she wasn’t queen, not really. We were not granted any such powers in their realm. In a realm that was governed by the Elves, Witches were considered too dangerous and unpredictable by those in power. They forced us to exist on a small parcel of barren land.
My mother took their meager offerings and created a dynasty. In time, I grew to understand the many reasons why she did what she did. The oppression we were forced to live under. The animosity between our lands. The violence it sparked time and time again. I’d heard it enough to regurgitate every sour word in my sleep. And yet, standing there, almost the same age as that poor little boy, all I could do was weep for him. For his broken heart. For his incredible loss. And for the life he had inadvertently, through no fault of his own, chained himself to.
Mother only slapped me once that day. The slap was for questioning her actions when she boasted about her feat to the others in the coven. If she’d known I’d been there, beyond the icy walls of Noctria, so far from the safety of our home, there would have been several more slaps. Followed by a season’s worth of punishment. I shudder to think what that might have entailed. But I was careful not to get caught. Always was.
I was cautious as a child. And I am even more so now that I’ve turned an age where love potions and wishing spells have suddenly become of interest. The first day I went into the woods alone to seek the boy was no different. I knew he hunted there. I’d been watching him for years. Ever since that day he lost his mother.
Bad description. He didn’t lose her, she was taken from him. My mother killed her. That was the truth, and truth was sorely lacking in my world.

****

This day I feel brave, and I step out of the shadows. After a few awkward exchanges, he stops looking away and holds my gaze, fixing his olive eyes on my emerald ones. His gaze flickers down to my lips, which are widening into a grin.
“Have I seen you before?”
I angle my head to get a better look at him. All tall, lean-muscled, dark-tousled hair of him. He is Elfkind, from Mythlandria. That much is evident by his clothing. And he is a very long way from home. These forests are well guarded by his people, but this far north isn't the sort of place someone of his stature should wander. I glance around. Alone, no less. Curiosity fills me as he bows his head.
“I’m sorry. I hope I didn’t frighten you.”
My smile stretches wider. “Frighten me?” Magic courses through my veins, and he is worried he'll frightened me. If only he knew so very little did anymore. I shake my head. “No, it’s fine. I just thought I was alone.” Well, that’s a lie.
“No one is ever truly alone in the wild. There are eyes everywhere. Even the trees will whisper your secrets if you tell them.”
“I'm not telling any. Not to you or the trees.”
He laughs. “Fair enough then. I am Adrius.” He clears his throat, looking uncomfortable for a moment before adding, “Prince Adrius.”
 “A prince. Without his guards? This far from his home? Perhaps it is you who should be frightened.”
Another laugh. I am immediately struck by how incredible his laugh is. For hours that follow, I drown in his laughter and his gaze as we spend time together, talking and exploring the forest around us.
At the end of our time together, he says, “I would very much like to see you again, Isobel. Can I? Can I see you again?”
I twist a lock of hair around my finger and nibble my lip. This will not go over well with Mother. She hates the Elves. Detests everything they are. Just as Elves hate Witches. A relationship with this boy has no chance of survival.
Moments of silence tick by and I’m still unsure. Saying yes isn’t wise. And yet, as I untwine my finger from my hair and let it fall, I say, “I’ll meet you here tomorrow, at sunset.” The words fly out so quickly I have no time to reconsider them.
“Sunset,” he repeats, watching my lips.
I cannot help but purse them for effect. Adrius lowers his head to hide a smile. Turning, I walk calmly back toward my home. I can feel him watching me, and although it gives me a shiver, for the first time in a long time, I feel . . . warm.
It is in that very moment I fall in love with Adrius, Prince of Mythlandria.

****

Home alone, common sense washes over me. I shouldn’t have gone, not ever, but he fascinates me. Everything from the way his dark hair falls across his hazel eyes when he adjusts his arrow, to the flex of his arm muscles when he draws the arrow tight in the bow.
Those arrows would sail at light speed across the wind, striking their intended target with deathly precision. If only he’d honed that skill as a young boy. Perhaps . . . No. Those are not thoughts worth entertaining. I would not wish my mother’s life away to save his mother’s. I did not even know them. I don’t know any Elves. It has always been strictly forbidden. And I love my mother. In a way. She’s taught me everything I now know. Everything I now plan to use to get him to notice me.
Forbidden or not, there is something about him that won’t let me stay away. Every day, I sneak back into my room after sundown and vow it’s my last foray into his woods. And every day come sunrise, I trade that vow for just one more look. Just one more peek. Just one more chance.
I shake my head. Chance at what exactly? That he’ll notice me. Desire me? Court me? None of those are likely. Especially if he knew who I am. Who my mother is. He would want nothing to do with me at all, and who could blame him?
But those eyes. They saw so much and held such sadness and pain. I want to help him. I have to help him. And so, in my search for juniper berries for the love tonic, I stray down the long path that will lead me to his usual haunt.
Only when I arrive he isn’t there. No. The tall, swaggering being, cloaked all in black with long, flowing, shockingly silver hair, a steely gaze and angled cheekbones is not the boy I was seeking. He is something else entirely. Equally as handsome, but in a totally different way. In a dangerous way. He oozes something that makes my insides feel strange. Good strange.
I inch closer. A twig snaps, and I freeze.
He pauses, but doesn’t turn to look in my direction. Instead, he lifts his sword. Massively long and inscribed with all sorts of glowing markings, blue smoke swirls from the gleaming blade, and the air strangles in my lungs.
What to do? Turn and run? Try to hide? I have no chance to make a choice. His sword points toward where I’m crouched in the shrubs.
“I see you there, so you might as well come out,” he says.
His voice. Oh, that voice. Like the chill of ice water running down my spine.
I rise, slowly, still uncertain what this new being might or might not do.
“Hello,” I say, lifting my hands to show I’m not a threat, though I could become one if needed. He is the one armed to the hilt. All I carry are a few spells and incantations that would at best freeze him for a moment and buy me time to run away.
When he turns to face me directly, two massive, black-feathered wings open behind him. They flap twice and then fold behind him, disappearing from sight. As he stands watching me watch him, his silver hair darkens to nightshade.
I suck in a slow breath. Wow. A Shadow Faerie. He has to be. Only they lay claim to such wings and the ability to change their looks with powerful glamour.
He’s impressive. Dark and brooding in an entirely different way than Adrius is. Adrius’s aura is warm, buttery, and it makes me want to melt. This Faerie’s aura is cold, penetrating, turning my blood to ice in my veins.
He doesn’t answer me, but he does lower his sword. His cold eyes travel over me, beginning with my hair, sliding downward, and then slowly back up again. I want to hide, to shield myself from what feels like an invasion of my body and soul.
“And you are?” He speaks with a cool, slightly accented voice.
“Isobel,” I reply. But when his lips curl in a wicked half-grin, I regret it. Names are power to the Fey. Or so I’ve heard. It is difficult to even remember what I know of them, when he is standing there watching me with those eyes of stardust.
“Do you mind?” I finally say, partially shielding my eyes. “You’re being a little invasive, considering we don’t even know one another.”
His brows arch. He seems surprised. I suppose he’s not accustomed to being told what to do. They just do as they please. Must be nice, not to have to be accountable for your actions. I did not share that same luxury. Quite the opposite really. I was held accountable for every action, big or small, intended or not.
His smile grows as his full body scan eases off.
“Thank you,” I say, lowering my hand. “Are you going to tell me who you are, or am I meant to guess?”
He studies me for a moment then takes a few steps closer. “Why not come out into the clear, where we can have a civilized conversation?”
“Said the fox to the hen.” I pause, uncertain. It seems like a poor choice. The better one would be to run home and never return. But I’d tried that before, to no avail. My curiosity will inevitably be the death of me. So I step out of the shrubs, shoving back the thorny branches as they nip at my skin.
Again, he looks me over, but this time there’s a different feel to it. I gesture for him to go ahead. “Your name?”
“You may call me Zanthiel. Knight of the Shadow court.” He dips his head slightly.
I inhale sharply. So, he IS a Shadow Faerie. I knew he had to be dangerous, but a Shadow Fey— This is another level of danger entirely. My very first encounter with a Fey and he’s from the darkest part of Faery. He’s trouble. I was taught to run from trouble. Certainly not to invite it. Yet somehow, I find him . . . extremely inviting.
“And I find you captivating,” he says, his eyes boring into mine.
Clever trick, reading minds. “Is that so, or is that just something you say to strange girls in the woods?”
“I cannot lie, so it has to be true.” He shrugs with his body, leaning casually against the tree.
My nose wrinkles. “It must be awful to not be able to lie. The truth is always better with a handful of glitter thrown over it. Dress it up a little. Make it shine. I adore lying. In fact, fabricating fiction is what’s kept me alive this long.” I shake my head and laugh, noticing the way he’s looking at me. Noticing it and liking it. “Truly. If I couldn't think fast and come up with a plausible story, just fantastical enough, but not too outlandish to be believable, then my mother’s punishments would be far more severe.”
“So, then, Isobel, I assume you are the trustworthy sort.” He smirks.
I like him from that moment on. Like him far more than I ought to. But there is something so poetic about a pathological liar connecting with someone who is genetically unable to tell a lie. That is Zanthiel. He baffles and thrills and frightens and dares, seduces and soothes with the stroke of a word. And no matter its outcome, you know without question that word is pure truth. With me, it is more likely to be pure fiction. In the moments together with him, I see a reason to be honest. A reason to want to tell the truth, to myself and to him.
 “Isobel. I see you’ve met my friend.”
I spin around to face Adrius. My face flushes with heat. Embarrassed by how much I’ve enjoyed meeting his friend.

****

My heart belongs to Adrius. And so I wish I understood why, when Zanthiel offered to escort me home that night, I agreed to it. I wonder why I agreed to so many opportunities to be alone with him. Alone with both of them.
Before long, I found myself unable to give up either one of them. When the three of us are together, we have the time of our lives. And when I’m alone with either of them, they complete a different broken part of me.
I was whole with them both. It was foolish and selfish and utterly unrealistic to think that my actions would not have consequences. Dire ones.
In the months that would follow, I ought to have known…the battle, my death, even my reincarnation into pure evil , , , it all boiled down to the same single weakness, the same fatal mistake.
My inability to choose between them.
 _________________________________________________________


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As always, keep reading and keep in touch! 

xo Michele

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

FREEZE Releases September 1st!!!



WOW, it's not until I write another blog post that I realize how much time has gone past, or how fast time flies by. Summer went past in a whoosh, filled with lots of fun and exhilarating and relaxing moments. And now here we are, ready for the release of FREEZE. The novella/novel that gives you Zanthiel's point of view. ;) I'm hoping this will be popular with his fans (and there are so many of you now!) becuase it gives a little more insight into who he is, and what makes this Shadow Faerie tick. Plus it continues the story from where BITTERSWEET leaves off.

And to launch things, we're touring the book with Bewitching Tours and making lots of fabulous stops along the way.

Here's the schedule, so make sure to stop by & say hello!!



September 1 Interview
Books and Tales

September 1 Spotlight
T's Stuff

September 1 Spotlight
Mello and June, It's a Book Thang!

September 2 Interview
Supernatural Central

September 2 Spotlight
Don't Judge, Read

September 2 Spotlight
Illuminite Caliginosus

September 5 Interview
The Creatively Green Write at Home Mom

September 5 Spotlight
The Cubicle Escapee

September 5 Spotlight
Ogitchida Kwe's Book Blog

September 6 Spotlight
Lisa's Loves(Books of Course)

September 6 Spotlight
Sylv all about books and films

September 6 Spotlight
Sapphyria's Book Reviews

September 7 Spotlight
Lisa’s World of Books

September 7 Guest Blog
Roxanne’s Realm 

September 7 Spotlight
Just a Little R&R

September 8 Guest Blog
Fang-tastic Books 

September 8 Spotlight
Ali - The Dragon Slayer


Synopsis: 

In a twisted game of following impossible clues to ceaseless dead ends, The Shadow Faerie Zanthiel is forced to search for the girl he'd let go. Lorelei may be out of his life, but she’s never far from his mind with the prophecy pulling them together. They both feel it, yet they both have reason to fight it. He might not be able to have her, but no force in this world, or any other will stop him from saving her. Time is running out, and Zanthiel has only a fraction of it left to find her, before those hunting her find either one of them.



Monday, May 30, 2016

Cannes Film Festival, Book Clubs and Chocolate


I had to share this video with you in case you haven't had the chance to see it yet. Why? Because it was the single most exciting thing to happen so far this month. I mean, when the producer who's optioned your book to be made into a motion picture, gives you a shout-out during the Cannes festival...that's bound to elevate the heart rate a little, right?!

Was it the most exciting thing to happen with my writing career to date, you ask? Not really. "But it's a MOVIE DEAL," I hear you shouting and madly waving your arms. "What could be more exciting than that?" It's a hard one to top, I'll give you that.


My favorite moment of being an author so far?  Wow, tough question. There have been a million heart-stopping fabulous moments in this journey so far from my first book contract to seeing the cover art, to selling the film rights. And I know there will be a ton more to come. But nothing quite compares to sitting at a table in the back of my favourite bookstore, with a group of amazing young women who chose Fire & Ice for their book club selection.


Listening to the passion and excitement about the characters...characters I created, characters I lived and breathed and thought I understood inside out. Then coming to realize from their unfiltered, tell-it-like-it-is, two hour plus steady stream of thoughts, opinions and feelings, that they had lived and breathed those characters also.  They proved with the clear conviction and authority that only girls who are consumed by a story can convey, that they quite probably knew those characters even better than I did. They most certainly loved, hated and were as equally invested in how their stories unfolded as I was.

Now that moment, was incredibly surreal.

...Plus, there was chocolate! For those of you just tuning in...I adore chocolate.


The only thing that could possibly top that would be eating chocolate at a teen book club....in Scotland, or Ireland....while filming Fire & Ice....and writing the next installment in the saga that's proving to be much longer than the originally planned trilogy! ;)  Now that will really get my heart racing!

Hope your days, months, weeks and years are filled with things that make your heart beat a little faster!

Monday, April 25, 2016

FREEZE is coming soon!!!



So I know its been, a while...as in a very long while, since my last post. But you'll be happy to know its becuase I've been writing. I wrote three novella's (which are more novel length than novella) for the Faerie Song Trilogy , plus I was contracted to write a series of children's books. Guess who's doing the illustrations....thaaat's right...me. So to say I've been busy is so much of an understatement its almost not even true. But I did want to take a breather to let you know that FREEZE, the first in the series of novellas, is in the hands of my publisher as we speak. Now, I know some of you (aka a LOT of you) are Zanthiel fans. Yes, I've been listening to and reading your heartfelt posts. Seriously, what is up with that? He has totally eclipsed Adrius as the book-boyfriend fave, which kind of blows my mind. But anyway, this first book is his story. In his voice. It picks up from where book 2 (BITTERSWEET) left off and delves a little more into his backstory and past. You know, so we get to see why he is the way he is...with all of that, deep, dark, badassness that is purely Zanthiel.

The second in the novellas is MELT, which is Venus' story. Now she's an interesting character. Always cool to know what makes the bad girl tick. ;) and then, of course, we have BURN, which is Adirus' story. I had planned on releasing his first, but in light of all of the recent Zanthiel fans, I decided to switch it up a bit. Hopefully you'll get all three during the spring, summer and fall. And the third book in the trilogy DARKEST LIGHT out for winter. That's my timeline, and its more of a wishlist than anything else. Because publishers...well they have thier own schedules for things. So we'll just have to wait and see if I'm close. Either way, I promise to let you know release dates as soon as I have them.

Thanks so much for reading, blogging, book-clubbing & reviewing the series... and if you loved it, thanks for telling a friend or fifty! It's so cool how many new fans have fallen in love with Mythlandria and it's characters as much as I have!! <3

Have an amazing day!!!

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Happy Holidays!!!


Wishing you all a wonderful Holiday Season filled with joy & happiness, 

laughter & love

...and of course , more fabulous books!!! xo




Monday, December 7, 2015

Listening to the FIRE & ICE Audiobook



Yes, that's right, in place of the Christmas tunes that have been filling our house for the past week, I've switched gears. Why, you ask? Well, after several days of being out of commission after a dental filling gone astray, (don't ask, I'm still getting over the pain) I was given some news that brightened my day. Audio Realms finished producing the masters for the FIRE & ICE audiobook, read by the fabulous voice actor Mandy Kaplan. And BITTERSWEET audiobook will be out in the new year.

Quite honestly, I'd never been drawn to audiobooks, but three chapters in I was hooked. Now I play it everywhere. It is so much fun to listen to....it reminds me of being read to as a child, something I've always loved.

So if you or someone you know is like me and wants to give audiobooks a go, here's the where-to-find it info:
http://www.amazon.com/Fire-Ice/dp/B018ILETNQ
http://www.audible.com/pd/Teens/Fire-Ice-Audiobook/B018ILENT6

AND we'll be sponsoring a FREEBIE GIVEAWAY of the FIRE & ICE Audiobook on the iFandom's Collide Blog Friday Dec.11th! Stay turned for that one!!

Here's a little audio sampler:




Fire And Ice by Michele Barrow-Belisle


In between listening to the entire thirteen hour Fire & Ice saga, I'll be back to playing Bing Crosby's White Christmas, Lady Gaga's Lady Gaga's Baby It's Cold Outside,  Clay Aiken's Mary, Did You Know, and Boney M's When a Child Is Born. We have a pretty eclectic mix in this house, and we embrace what we love no matter the category. Music, like books and painting and all forms of art, evokes powerful emotions and creates magical lifelong memories. My holiday wish for you is a lifetime of happy ones! 




Until next time! CHEERS! 

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Feeling Like Cinderella, Back From the Ball!



The past few days have been a whirlwind of excitement. New connections, and new projects have rounded out the end of summer, but the amount of buzz over a post I wrote for Gordon A Wilson's blog.... well there's just no describing that feeling! Other than a bit like Cinderella returning from the ball.\ow apt, considering the post is called:

 

I speak a lot about the magic that happens when you pursue your dreams. Even the serendipitous way I met author extraordinaire Sheri McInnis and blogger extraordinaire Gordon Wilson was nothing short of a magical meeting. Through the wonderful article about the film deal by Whitney SouthI was connected to Sheri who connected me to Gordon. Then with a single blog post about how I sold the film deal for Fire & Ice... a wave of a magic wand....and there were over 5000 views of the article on the first day alone! Magic. The fun has not stopped since. There's been a veritable twitter fest happening and I couldn't be more thrilled. Always happy to share my story in the hopes that it inspires other to follow their wildest dreams with reckless abandon, and total disregard for those who tell them it can't be done! 

Check out the article here on Gordon's Blog. And while you're there, browse some of the other amazing posts. You're sure to be enlightened and inspired. 


And I'd also invite you to check out Sheri's blog. Her post on the reasons she turned away from a successful stint in traditional publishing to self-publishing her upcoming novel is worth its weight in gold for any author. THE HUNTER'S MOON is a supernatural thriller about Witches in NYC, and is due out November. Watch for it! I know I will be!!

Those of you in the Philly area... please stop by and visit me at YA Fest 2015. I'll be there along with tons of other amazing authors signing and chatting and and hanging out! Don't miss out on the fun!