Strolling in Storyland

Welcome to a world where imagination runs free

Book Blitz-The Tempering by Adrianne James



I’ve heard about this very special book that I want to share with everyone called The Tempering! Check out the amazing cover!



“The Mythology department at prestigious Harvard University is tiny—and Mackenzie Duncan has just been selected as one of the lucky few. Her love for myths and legends is deep, but she never thought any of it could be real.

After being attacked by a large wolf while walking home alone, Mackenzie realizes something is not right. She heals quickly, has suddenly become super strong, and is experiencing mood swings that can’t possibly be normal. The myths she’s studying aren’t myths at all. Werewolves are real, and she’s one of them. Fear of what she is, and who she might hurt sends Mackenzie running from the life she’s worked hard to build–and straight into the arms of a handsome Were named Geoff and into the home of his pack. Living with her new pack takes the edge off her confusion and self-loathing, but the arrival of new pack members changes the dynamic, and tests Geoff and Mackenzie’s growing relationship.

The hardest part of being a werewolf is to have no control and no memory of her time as a bloodthirsty beast. When a moon cycle passes, and she is actually able to remember bits and pieces of the night, she starts to ask questions, and the more questions she asks, the more she realizes she doesn’t like the answers. Can she set aside her own sense of morals to belong to a pack that is like a family or will she leave everything behind yet again in search of a life she can be proud of?”

Purchase your copy on  Amazon or Barnes and Noble

Want to know more about The Tempering?

Here’s an  excerpt of The Tempering of this exciting new novel!

Mackenzie pulled her coat tight around her as she took the first few steps onto the walking path along the bridge. Looking out over the Charles River, she smiled at the beauty the lights created when they reflected off the water. The sky had an almost bluish purple glow and the full moon was high in the sky. She may have been better suited to sit inside and work, but if she were able to admire the beauty the world had to offer through a window, that was what she considered perfect.

Stepping off the bridge, Mackenzie checked her watch and was shocked that it was already ten-thirty. She looked down the well-lit street that held a throng of students partying with the game blaring on their radios, and then to her left at the quiet park. She loved the park. It had plenty of trees and most of the time it was completely deserted. It reminded her of Colorado at times. Even though she didn’t like to admit it, she missed her home state. She quickly made the left turn and found herself walking amongst the tall maple trees. Had there been any light, the beautiful oranges and reds would have created a kaleidoscope of color in a canopy above her. The trees stood so closely together that almost no light was able to break through the leaves. It was pitch black with the exception of one clearing about thirty feet in front of her where the moonlight was shining in like a spotlight.

The sounds from the street behind her slowly faded away with every step, but at the same time, her unease grew. Looking over her shoulder every few moments to confirm that she was still alone, she quickened her pace. She didn’t know why, but she felt as if she were being watched. When a noise from the tree line echoed through the area, her heart began to race. Goosebumps erupted on her skin and fear gnawed at her.

The rustling from the trees had Mackenzie on high alert. She stopped and searched the trees as best as she could, but without any added light, she knew she had little chance of seeing anything. Just walk quicker. It’s just an animal.

Swallowing down the fear that threatened to engulf her, she tried to look in all directions at once, not wanting to be surprised from any angle. With every step she took, the noise in the trees never faded. It has to be an animal. It has to be an animal. Animals are not scary. It’s probably a raccoon or something. Raccoons are nocturnal, so are possums. That’s it. Nothing to be frightened of. Just another few steps and I will be in the light, then another five minutes and I’m out of the park. Just a few more minutes. She wanted to believe anything except the truth– that she was in danger.

 Time seemed to slow in those last few seconds before Mackenzie reached the light-filled break in the trees. The noise she heard was growing stronger, louder, and she didn’t know what to do. She began walking backwards, trying to keep an eye on the tree line, but in doing so, she tripped over a large rock.

A menacing growl sounded from the trees and when she turned to look behind her, a giant wolf leapt at her from the darkness. The fear overtook her, making her feel trapped within her own skin and unable to move or scream.

The wolf had a large head with strange yellow-green eyes. Its brown fur was matted and for some reason, its size reminded her more of a bear than a wolf. When Mackenzie realized the wolf’s mouth had opened and she could see the razor sharp teeth, she flew into protective mode. Her arms rose up to cover her face and she tried to push herself backward, away from the beast. Within seconds, the pungent aroma that was the beast’s hot breath seeped around her arms and over her face. Her stomach wretched but before she could heave what little lay in her stomach up, the beast bit down on her arm. The sharp teeth pierced her flesh and she could feel the tearing of her skin as the beast flung his head back and forth.

As Mackenzie’s blood filled the wolf’s mouth, she finally let out a blood-curdling scream. She tried to pull away. She pounded against the side of the beast with her free hand while kicking her legs about hoping to make contact, but everything she did was useless against the giant monster as it continued to tear her arm apart.

Mackenzie had to do something, or she knew she was going to be killed by the wretched wolf. Her thoughts swirled around, trying to think of anything she could do to free herself. She pushed and pulled at its muzzle with her free arm, trying to dislodge the teeth embedded in her flesh. The sharp pain in the mangled limb became an incredible burn, but the wolf must have severed a few nerves because she could no longer feel anything but numbness from her shoulder down to her fingertips.

Remembering what had put her in this position to begin with, Mackenzie reached behind her and grabbed the damn rock and swung it at the wolf’s head. With a loud crack, the rock connected with the top of the wolf’s skull. Briefly shocked, the beast’s grip released  as her arm fell from its mouth. Before he could go in for another bite, Mackenzie gouged her thumb straight into its freakish yellow-green eye. With a loud yelp, the wolf retreated and snarled once again, baring his teeth. She had angered it, and she was suddenly more frightened than she had been when her arm was being shredded in its mouth. Pure rage marred its face. She quickly threw the rock, hitting it square in its bloody snout. A loud crack resonated through the park before the beast turned and ran off.

The Tempering (Mackenzie Duncan, #1)

About the Author

AdrianneGrowing up, Adrianne couldn’t get her hands on enough books to satisfy her need for the make believe. If she finished a novel and didn’t have a new one ready and waiting for her, she began to create her own tales of magic and wonder. Now, as an adult, books still make up majority of her free time, and now her tales get written down to be shared with the world.

During the day, Adrianne uses her camera to capture life’s stories for clients of all ages and at night, after her two children are tucked in bed; she devotes herself to her written work. Adrianne is living the life she always wanted, surrounded by art and beauty, the written word and a loving family.

As a young adult and new adult author, Adrianne James has plans to bring stories of growing characters, a little romance, and perhaps a little magic and mythology down the line for her readers to enjoy.

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God save the Frenchie: A Parisian in London

Red phone booth UK

London is just a few hours away from Paris by train, but it’s enough to make a Frenchie feel like an alien for just a couple of days. And it’s a wonderful feeling. It’s not just that you feel small in a wide new world, it’s that you feel renewed, amused by every funny little detail, amazed by all the differences you notice that make a city unique.

Of course Londoners drive on the left side of the road and I almost got killed quite a few times. They really are crazy drivers, crazier even than Parisian drivers, but maybe it’s a big city thing.

I took zero pictures during my entire stay because I wanted to feel the city, lock each important instant in a safe of hidden memories and those strong imprints will remain with me forever. Feeding ducks while strolling through  St. James’ Park, being mocked by drivers amused by the baffled Frenchie learning to cross the street, enthralled while Elektra plotted her revenge against  her mother Klytämnestra at the Royal Opera House, reading a novel in Hyde Park, munching on free                               pizza in Chinatown.

Speaking of Chinatown, London has an official Chinatown like New York and other American cities. Paris doesn’t. There’s Belleville in Paris where there is an important Asian community (where I buy my aloe vera juice. Delicious), but no official Chinatown. So while in London, on my way to Piccadilly Circus, I stumbled across Chinatown and boy was I happy I did. Restaurants, colorful decorations, acupuncture and Chinese medicine. Chinese food is a lot less expensive in London than in Paris.chinatown1
So I continued to Piccadilly Circus where I was met with “lions and tigers and bears, oh my”! No, there were no such things but in my imagination there were. I just cannot reconcile myself to the fact that the name of a place can have no relation with what you’ll find there. The French are very prosaic when naming their streets. There are a couple of street names that you are sure to find in every French city: heroes of the French resistance ” Général de Gaulle”, “Jean Moulin”, other historical figures like “Jean Jaurès”, “Gambetta” and then of course there is the one thing the French are very proud of and you will find this name in every French town as a street name, or subway station, or a square or all three it is… “République“.
Yes, we are proud of our Republic, of the fact we are no longer a monarchy and that we got rid of our king ages ago. Maybe that’s why I couldn’t care less about Buckingham Palace. It is probably something engrained in every French soul from the moment we go to school and learn about the French revolution.But there it is.
Also, when you’re a Frenchie in London, you have to let go of some of your pride. Yes you will encounter constant reminders of French military failures and British victories. You’ll probably quicken your step on Waterloo Road and won’t linger at Trafalgar Square, and Churchill’s statue will remind you that, yes the British won WW2 and yes, the French lost and cooperated with the nazis. So, let go of your patriotism for a couple of days and all will be well.

Look away from these metaphorical Halls of Shame and head straight for the British Museum which is absolutely free (except for a couple of temporary exhibitions). Londoners are awesome. If you’re a British tourist in Paris and expect to get the same treatment at the Louvre, don’t kid yourself. The Louvre isn’t free, the British Museum is. God bless the UK. I saw mummies, tons of them. I’d seen one mummy in Istanbul, but only one. In the British Museum there was a whole graveyard of Egyptian mummies. It was a little creepy, I have to admit. However, in Paris there are more museums dedicated to a specific types of art: if you want Asian art you go to the Guimet museum (one of my favorites), for African arts you’d go to the Quai Branly and so on, while everything was kind of thrown together in the British Museum. I still enjoyed the museum especially its Greek antiquities.

I also visited the Victoria and Albert museum and learnt a lot about Asian art notably Korea, Japan and buddhist art. Now I can tell you all about Buddha’s positions and gestures in Buddhist art. Everything was very well explained which is yet another difference with Paris. In Paris, there are many, many museums which is great. But there aren’t many explanatory notes so you have to research everything on your own or have a guided tour which I absolutely despise and avoid whenever I can.

I didn’t see a lot of graffiti in London, even when I left the center, but maybe I should’ve looked in specific places, like I did in Berlin. You won’t find graffiti in the subway like in Paris, which is too bad and made trips in the subway kind of bus
I took the bus whenever I could, sometimes even missing my stop on purpose just to stay comfortably seated in the upper level of the flashy red bus and watch the city pass by.

Finally, the opera house in Covent Garden.Royal Opera House
Those of you who have read my novel “A French Girl in New York” know how much I love classical music. I’ve seen performances in the Opéra Garnier in Paris, the Deutsche Oper Berlin and the Hungarian State Opera.

I’ve seen the Scala in Milan from the outside, but it’s one of my dearest wishes to see a performance at the Scala.

For now (without having entered the Scala) I can sincerely say that no opera house is more beautiful than the Opéra Garnier. That being said, the Royal Opera House is magnificent and is a very close second. I’ll go back as soon as I can. Listening to Christine Goerke as Strauss’ Elektra was breathtaking and one of the most enchanted moments of my existence.

I’m eager to be a Frenchie lost in the elegantly-named  streets of London again.