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Raven Crosses the Line by J.B. Dane is a Best Books '23 pick #uf #urbanfantasy #giveaway



Title: RAVEN CROSSES THE LINE

 

Author: J.B. Dane

 

Genre: Urban Fantasy Mystery Comedy

 

Book Blurb:

 

It’s dimension jumping  PI Bram Farrell and his hellhound partner Beelz are up to as Bram crosses the line back into his home world: fictionland.

 

It’s not the only stop on the itinerary though for a smuggler is on the shopping list, one with a covert entry into Faerie, one that doesn’t insure immediate death.  Although, considering live band karaoke is involved, death doesn’t sound so bad after all.

 

Beelz might be stuck in Great Dane form, but there are compensations. Join the fun as we leap into other dimensions. Sarcasm and magic are a given.

 

Excerpt from Raven Crosses the Line by J.B. Dane, Book 4 in The Raven Tales, urban fantasy PI mystery comedy:

 

So they wouldn’t miss the fight inside, I tossed the remaining two assailants over the portal, dusted my hands off and joined Beelz rather than become part of the free-for-all I’d inadvertently started. Sat on the ground with my back against the building waiting for them all to either run out of steam or drop dead. Both were likely. Beelz rearranged himself next to me, resting his jaw on my leg as was his wont when relaxing. As a Great Dane, he put a dent in my thigh since he’d temporarily cast off the lightweight dachshund rig.

 

Inside The Rest bedlam reigned. The door remained open, an already unconscious patron serving as a door stop. Oaths from centuries and civilizations long past as well as more recent ones funneled from the joint.

 

A cool evening breeze swung by, appeared to take a gander, then moved on. I didn’t need to watch the action. I’d been involved in such evenings at The Rest before. Never starting them, of course. But I was conversant with the script in play. It goes something like this:

 

INT. THE REST. CONTINUOUS

 

• Fists rage left and right, martial arts kicks attempted by male patrons

• Quarters tight yet men attempt to choke or batter each other

• Three females cling to backs of men slugging it out with other men

• Two women rip each other’s clothes, tearing at each other’s hair

• Table collapses under weight of man landing on it

• Chairs thrown or used to down contenders

• Man tossed at bar and hits invisible forcefield

 

At a guess, the stunt coordinator would jot off to the side in his copy of the script the words typical cliché bar fight. Well, except for the unexpected forcefield. I knew the sound one made when stopping an airborne fighter well. The invisible obstruction chuckled.

 

The soundtrack supplied the music of furniture being smashed and bodies hitting the floor, the walls, and what sounded like the ceiling in at least one case. The clatter crept to us as we chilled. Then a bell rang. Not like one hanging in a church steeple, or to announce customers as they entered or left a shopkeeper’s premises, nor did it belong to bicycle, schoolmarm, rich folks ringing for the servants or that of a chuck wagon. This was the kind that signaled the end of a round in a boxing ring. And whoever was putting it through its paces was doing so in rapid succession.

 

By the time the dinger was exhausted, the sounds of drunken rambunctiousness died away.

 

“I need hands raised for those of you imbeciles who can’t read,” a familiar voice snarled. Grethel Wald, the termagant brave enough to think nothing of accompanying me on that job into the Grimm Memorial Forest. Just the sound of her voice brought a grin to my face. The miscreants were about to be schooled to her way of thinking whether they wanted to be or not.

 

Apparently, there were no takers on the offer to raise hands. “So, all of you can read?” Gret sounded dramatically stunned at the news before she demanded, “Then what do the numerous signs on the walls say?”

 

As though the previously bloodthirsty fighters had reverted to second grade, voices of all pitches and a variety of accents answered. “Fights of any sort are verboten,” they mumbled in a poorly rehearsed choir. Some flubbed the pronunciation of verboten.

 

“Again,” she insisted, “and a bit louder as some of you didn’t sound like you understood the words.”

 

The chorus received a moderate upgrade in volume.

 

“Which means what?” Gret snapped.

 

As there wasn’t an immediate answer, I pictured them looking helplessly at each other for an answer. Finally, a guy gathered enough courage to speak for the group. “We verboted?”

 

“You verboted,” Gret agreed. “Now, clean up your mess. Those who can magic the tables and chairs back into usable condition better include fixing any that had uneven legs in the past. Those of you lacking magic, tote the bodies outside. I don’t care if they’re dead or unconscious just take any that are your friends with you when you leave. Having a pile of the recently dead outside gives the tavern a bad name and we don’t want that, do we?”

 

There were some mumbles but none loud enough to sort out whether they agreed or not.

 

“Once the place is back in shape,” Gret continued, “you can all reorder drinks but there will be an extra service charge for the entertainment. Got that?”

 

There were grumbles, but none sounded irritated at the sudden rise in prices.

 

I gestured for Beelz to remove his snout from treating me as a pillow and got to my feet. The rest away from the contretemps inside served as a cool down period. Alcohol imbibing time had arrived. Did have to step over the sprawled legs of the unconscious door stop to get inside though. Beelz essayed a graceful leap over him.

 

“See you haven’t lost your touch when it comes to bossing people around,” I said, ambling up to where Gret stood by the bar giving her recalcitrant customers the dragon eye, which is far more intent and dangerous than any eagle eye, believe me.

 

Her scowl vanished, replaced by a grin of delight. Considering she threw herself into my arms—which was a first, believe me—I surmised her evening had been brightened. Well, until she counted up the extra profits from the excise tax she was leveling on the customers hastily cleaning up the tavern’s main room. As magic was being used rather than elbow grease, elbows would soon be at work raising tankards, tumblers, grails, and bottles in toasts with recently slugged frenemies.

 

Buy Links (including Goodreads and BookBub):

 

 

 

 


What makes your featured book a must-read?

 

As the final days of 2023 move toward the arrival of 2024, isn’t it time for laughter, adventure, some derring-do in storyland? That’s what The Raven Tales offers, and what RAVEN CROSSES THE LINE, the fourth volume in the series, brings to the armchair. There’s the option of picturing Bram’s hellhound partner in sleuthing curled up with you. Choice of dachshund or Great Dane size available. Maybe move to the sofa if you choose Great Dane though.

 

Giveaway –

 

Enter to win a $45 Amazon gift card:

 

 

Open Internationally.

 

Runs December 18 – December 31, 2023.

 

Winner will be drawn on January 2, 2024.

 

Author Biography:

 

J.B. Dane is the author of the urban fantasy PI mystery comedy series, The Raven Tales, which includes novels published by Burns and Lea Books, and a series of Indie published novellas and short stories that are prequels and also "between the books" adventures of her MC, Bram Farrell. The 3rd novel in the series, RAVEN'S EDGE, was honored with a spot in the Winner’s Circle for 2022 at N.N. Lights’ Book Heaven. The 4th novel, RAVEN CROSSES THE LINE, arrived this past  summer. 5* reviews have followed for the novels, in particular, singing praises that should make her blush though she’s too busy proudly polishing her nails against her lapel to do so. She also writes shorter fantasy fiction, many tales of which have appeared in anthologies, particularly her Nick Claus, North Pole Security stories. She writes historical and contemporary romantic mystery and speculative twisted 19th century fiction under two different names, just to confuse people. Or so they seem to think.

 

Social Media Links:

 

Website http://www.4TaleTellers.com Click on JB Dane in the menu

On Facebook JBDane Mystery and Fantasy http://bit.ly/2GJtejL

On Twitter @JBDaneWriter

2 Comments


andreadrake1
andreadrake1
Dec 31, 2023

I read over 160 Books.

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N. N. Light
N. N. Light
Dec 19, 2023

Thank you, J.B., for sharing your book in our Best Books of '23 Bookish Event!

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