Pitch Wars Mentor Book Spotlight and Giveaway with Michelle Hauck!

Pitch Wars Mentor Book Spotlight and Giveaway with Michelle Hauck!

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Michelle Hauck

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Michelle Hauck lives in the bustling metropolis of northern Indiana with her hubby and two teenagers. Besides working with special needs children by day, she writes all sorts of fantasy, giving her imagination free range. A book worm, she passes up the darker vices in favor of chocolate and looks for any excuse to reward herself. Bio finished? Time for a sweet snack.

She is a co-host of the yearly the writer contests Query Kombat, Nightmare on Query Street, New Agent, PitchSlam, and Sun versus Snow. Her Birth of Saints Series from Harper Voyager starts with GRUDGING on November 17, 2015. Her epic fantasy, KINDAR’S CURE, was published by Divertir Publishing. Her short story, Frost and Fog, was published by The Elephant’s Bookshelf Press in their anthology, Summer’s Double Edge. Elephant’s Bookshelf Press also published another of her short stories, The Unfinished Task, in their winter anthology, Winter’s Regret.


Grudging (1)


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A world of chivalry and witchcraft…and the invaders who would destroy everything.

The North has invaded, bringing a cruel religion and no mercy. The ciudades-estados who have stood in their way have been razed to nothing, and now the horde is before the gates of Colina Hermosa…demanding blood.

On a mission of desperation, a small group escapes the besieged city in search of the one thing that might stem the tide of Northerners: the witches of the southern swamps.

The Women of the Song.

But when tragedy strikes their negotiations, all that is left is a single untried knight and a witch who has never given voice to her power.  And time is running out.

A lyrical tale of honor and magic, Grudging is the opening salvo in the Book of Saints trilogy.



Shortly after the combat, Ramiro made his excuses to the men at the wall and left, returning to the citadel and taking the stairs to the roof. Some alcalde’s wife from the past had turned this spot into an outdoor garden and dining room, making it a favorite retreat for many. A peaceful place when he felt anything but.

Other people’s blood spotted his white shirt. Had things gone differently, it could easily have been his own. He needed a bath and a rest, but his mind hummed from the conflict, leaving him unable to stop pacing. Cold chills claimed his limbs. His stomach was sourer than when alcohol had filled it. With no clear single-combat victory, he hadn’t earned his beard. The night reeked of disappointment.

How long? How long could they keep the Northerners out?

Stars spotted the night sky here, where the citadel met the top of the world. Or so it had always seemed to him as a child. Life was no longer so certain now that he was older.

He drew in the cool scent of creeping jasmine, carefully tended and watered by hand in pots across the rooftop. Colina Hermosa spread before him, a humbling sight. The city stretched away from the citadel on all sides, a jewel shining with lights. It spread down the hill, becoming wider and grander as it sprawled, with imposing avenues and white-clad stucco buildings whose thick walls and small windows kept out the noonday heat. There was squalor and dirt as well, fits of temper, rudeness, and often impatience. But the darkness hid all that, washing the city of its faults and giving it a fresh life until it tumbled like the sea against the immovable stone walls that now held out the Northerners.

His heart swelled with love. Something worth defending. Home.

Outside the high, white walls, well beyond arrow shot, was a sight not so welcoming. There, jammed between the city and a deep, old quarry used to build the city walls, campfires burned. A red swarm of rage and death, brimstone and smoke, offering a grim contrast with the peaceful firmament. Not by the hundreds did they burn, but by the thousands, mirroring the stars in the sky. How many peasants’ houses did they demolish to feed so much hungry fire? They must be down to burning cacti. How they kept it up night after night, he couldn’t begin to comprehend. Salvador had talked on about supply trains and quartermasters, but Ramiro had let his imagination dwell on his first ride instead. An indulgence he regretted now.

If only each fire meant a single enemy, but that was wishful thinking. Each fire contained tens of men. Tens and thousands. And behind them, the siege machines waited their turn. A lethal combination for Colina Hermosa.

He touched the spot above his spleen, and whispered, “Santiago, don’t let me give in to despair.

Winner receives a signed copy in US or ebook outside US.

Make a comment to enter. After 24 hours, Michelle will contact the winner.

(Winner chosen using random.org via the comments.)

Author: Heather Cashman

With a Bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry, the lab reports always lacked the fantastical element Heather's imagination demands. Hypotheses turned into taglines and novels, so she's going back to college for a Creative Writing degree. Her novels range from Epic Fantasy to Contemporary Speculative Fiction, she dabbles in picture books, and is currently seeking representation. ~Member SCBWI

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  1. Grudging Birth of Saints sounds exciting, I would enjoy reading this epic tale. Thank you

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  2. Sounds like a great book. I adore fantasy and knights!

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  3. This sounds amazing! I was a history major, so I love the combo of history and magic. Thanks for the great giveaway!

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  4. I enjoyed the excerpt. The writing is gorgeous and I can feel and see the world the author created. thanks for the chance to win a copy of this book.

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  5. Loved Kindar’s Curse and would love to read more from Michelle’s magical mind!

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  6. Ramiro staring out at the camp fires put me on edge. A truly cinematic scene, like the barbarians at the gate. I am keen to read the rest of it

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    • My husband tells me that writing fantasy is not fair. You can make up whatever you want with no rules. And I just laugh and tell him that is exactly why I write. Fantasy rules!

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  7. I’ve been wanting to pick up a copy of that book, it sounds excellent.

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  8. (Sorry- don’t know why my comment got placed under Jerome’s comment… Don’t think I clicked “post a reply”.

    In any case, this is what I said as a comment rather than a reply:

    My husband tells me that writing fantasy is not fair. You can make up whatever you want with no rules. And I just laugh and tell him that is exactly why I write. Fantasy rules!

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  9. Comment Great set up.

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  10. Sounds interesting. Thanks for the giveaway.

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  11. Thank you for this giveaway.

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  12. Great giveaway for a great book.

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  13. My favorite line is “something worth defending.” Thanks for the giveaway. Tonya

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  14. This sounds like the beginning of a great series.

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  15. This sounds like a great read. What an exciting plot!0

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  16. This epic tale sounds awesome!

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  17. Sound like a great book.

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  18. I’ve been eyeing this one since Query Kombat! Looks great!

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  19. I’m SOO in the mood for an epic fantasy. Especially with a touch of creepy religion. This sounds fantastic!

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  20. I like how you can get a sense of the culture, even through just the excerpt. The settings are described beautifully, and you get a sense that the conflict has been well developed and is deeply ingrained in the story. One for the “to read” pile.

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  21. I’m in. Sounds like a great read.

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  22. The winner of the copy of GRUDGING is Erin B! You can contact me on twitter @Michelle4Laughs or by email Michelle9Hauck (at) aol (dot) com.

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  23. Anything with magic I like to read, Read the excerpt, found it very intriguing. Good luck to the author and I enjoyed visiting your blog.

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