Kim McDougall
I took a bit of a break from newsletters and social media in July to finish the manuscript for Valkyrie Bestiary Book 8. And, of course, July flew by but not without some important updates. The cover is finally here!

Unicorns Don't Cry ebook is now available for pre-order. Be sure to snap it up before release day on October 19th to take advantage of special pre-release pricing. As always, I will get the paperback up a few days early so that everyone can enjoy it at the same time.
Kayla Schweisberger, the artist behind the last 4 VB book covers has outdone herself with this one, and I'm really thrilled to show it off. Here's a little blurb too:
Critter wrangler rule #20: You can’t save them all.
Rage is boiling inside Kyra. Friends are dead, the world is burning, and her husband is…gone, his body and mind taken over by a demon. Death would have been kinder. But she can’t kill a demon, so Kyra must hunt down the creature wearing Mason’s face and do the unthinkable—trap him for all eternity in a bloodstone.
In between hunting expeditions, Kyra continues to rescue critters in need, including a unicorn whose rage matches her own after spending years as a frat house mascot, and the  shar-lil, a creature of immense power whose destiny has yet to reveal itself.
Can Kyra stop a demon, save her growing family and still be an advocate for those creatures who have no voice of their own?
Unicorns Don’t Cry is Book 8 of the Valkyrie Bestiary, a dark and humorous Urban Fantasy series.


What's Kim Reading?

Continuing with my summer of reading only indie authors, I picked up this little gem:

The Imogen Gray Series Book 1
by Lauretta Hignett
316 pages

Let me introduce you to Leroy. He’s 12 but looks scrawny enough to be only 10. That’s because his mother is an addict who’d rather buy drugs than food. She even sold him to a blood witch for cash. Leroy’s had a hard life, but it has honed him rather than defeated him. He’s smart and funny and endearingly kid-like, not overly precocious as you often see in kid characters (I’m looking at you Princess Leia).
Here’s Leroy regurgitating the MC’s rather horrific advice back to her:
>> I looked at the kid, lying on the couch. “He’s better at looking after himself than you think,” I told her. “Leroy, what do you do at the first sign of trouble?”
“I run,” he recited absently, typing on the keyboard. “I run until my feet are bloody stumps, then I crawl with my hands until they are bloody stumps, then I keep going.”
“Good kid.” <<
And then there’s Sonja, a vampire who has been given to the MC by her liege lord as a gopher. Sonja hates the MC with a fiery passion and makes no bones about it. Sonja keeps threatening the MC with colorful warnings such as:
>> “I’m going to rip out your intestines and string them through these very trees,” she hissed at me. “I’m going to pluck out your eyeballs and give them to the fly-fishing club to use as bait.” <<
And then there’s the witch and her bear-shifter wife and the octogenarian priest who tries to exorcise raccoons and other nasties with a water gun filled with holy water.
Why am I pointing out all these side characters when the MC is Imogen Gray who rocks the humor and compassion already? Because I believe it’s the mark of a great author when the minor characters are so well-developed and memorable.
I finished this Imogen Gray book a few days ago, but I’m still thinking about it. Imogen is a unique character in that she’s thousands of years old. As a result of her long life, she has some social issues that keep her isolated. But what really makes me love her is her reluctant compassion. She doesn’t want to be responsible for a pre-teen, but she steps up when no one else will. She doesn’t want to like the water-gun toting priest, but she does. She even helps him on his demon hunting crusade.
Add to all these great characters a bunch of unique cryptids and mad blood-witch hell-bent on ruling the world and you’ve got the makings of a great series. I can’t wait for the next one. Lauretta Hignett has created a really fun, fast-paced story with characters I wish I could call my BFFs.
I read this on Kindle Unlimited.
Note, that the man with the wolf in the picture above is the man I imagine Leroy will grow up to be, with Imogen’s help, of course.

Visit Lauretta Hignett's webisite

Book Fairs & Events

I'm starting to line up in-person events for the fall. I have the first one booked for September 17, 2023: Pumpkin Spice & Everything Nice, Craft & Vendor Market. 10am-4pm Petawawa Civic Centre ~ Arena Floor, 16 Civic Centre Rd, Petawawa. Check out the Book Fairs page for updates. 

Click on the banners below for more great book deals.


Spotlight Books

Immortal Dusk
TJ Green

A citadel crowned in ice. An ancient message that contains a warning. The clash of ancient powers.

Nahum thinks he’s accompanying Olivia on a simple retrieval for The Orphic Guild, but finds something far more sinister. Relics connected to the Fallen.

Relics that can send people mad and incite violence.

But he hasn’t the time or resources to deal with them now. The Nephilim are spread thin. JD needs an artefact to unlock the Emerald Tablet, and a team are sent to Egypt to steal it.

Behind everything lurks the threat of Black Cronos. The hunt for the mysterious Comte de St Germain’s base continues, and their research takes Barak and Estelle to the Pyrenees, and a remote citadel on a snowy mountain top.

With the Nephilim tied up with their various pursuits, Harlan, Jackson, and Olivia are vulnerable. They think they’re prepared—until they’re attacked and Jackson is kidnapped.

As events connect, the threat intensifies. Everyone must remain vigilant, or they will lose everything.



Spirit Seeker: The Complete Series
Jana Ruth

Angry nature spirits. Stubborn elite soldiers. A homeless girl is all that stands between them, but which side will she take?

Rika can talk to spirits. For her, it has always been natural, but most people can't see the many nature spirits inhabiting Europe's wild places. They're the ones behind wild weathers and natural disasters. To Rika, they're her friends.

Eight years ago, the police took her Mum and sent Rika to a youth home. Two months later, Rika escaped. She's been living on the streets of Berlin ever since, finding shelter from friendly bush dryads and warmth during long winter nights from fiery salamanders. But when she crosses the Erlking, a powerful storm sprite, Rika's only chance are the Spirit Seekers, elite soldiers in the war against nature. And her spirit friends' bitter enemies. To face the storm, Rika must pick a side and relinquish all hopes for peace.

If you like fast-paced adventure, action-packed urban fantasy with unique creatures, and secret societies, you'll love the Spirit Seekers. This series will take you on a supernatural sight-seeing tour around Europe. In this collection, you will find the complete series plus the prequel: Natural Selection.



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