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paranormal romance

Spotlight & $25 GC Giveaway: FOX TALE by Karen Hulene Bartell

- book spotlight

fox tail

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. A randomly drawn winner will be awarded a $25 Amazon/BN gift card.  Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.


Description of Fox Tale


Heights terrify Ava. When a stranger saves her from plunging down a mountain, he diverts her fears with tales of Japanese kitsune—shapeshifting foxes—and she begins a journey into the supernatural.


She’s attracted to Chase, both physically and metaphysically, yet primal instincts urge caution when shadows suggest more than meets the eye.


She’s torn between Chase and Rafe, her ex, when a chance reunion reignites their passion, but she struggles to overcome two years of bitter resentment. Did Rafe jilt her, or were they pawns of a larger conspiracy? Are the ancient legends true of kitsunes twisting time and events?


Read an Excerpt of Fox Tale


fox taleI applied my makeup with an artist’s hand, blending three shades of eyeshadow and going heavy on the mascara. Then I slipped into the black cocktail dress I’d bought for the occasion–a fusion of chic and slutty.


Wish I knew what Rafe planned for my birthday. Dinner at an upscale restaurant? Pub food at a sports bar?


“A surprise,” was all he’d said.


What’s the fine line between dressed to kill and overdressed? Glancing at the mirror, I glimpsed the exposed décolletage, then examined my naked left hand. More importantly, is tonight the night? After dating for three years, the conversation had finally turned to rings and weddings, and with graduation a month away, I was eager to take the next step.


At six o’clock sharp, I sat by the door, butterflies fluttering in my belly.


Ten minutes passed, fifteen. I texted him. An hour later, I called. When he didn’t pick up, I left a voicemail.


At eight o’clock, I checked my email. No messages, no texts–radio silence.


At nine o’clock, I removed my makeup, the black, smoky taupe, mauve, and greige streaks on the cotton pad mirroring my mood. After showering, I picked at soggy leftovers as I studied my bare left hand. Leftovers…


When the phone dinged, I flinched. Rafe?


Mia–Guess who’s at Tootsie’s? And Rafe’s not alone. What’s going on?–


I sat back, stunned. He wouldn’t break up with me on my birthday–without even the courtesy of telling me–would he?


Interview with Author Karen Hulene Bartell


Have you ever been in trouble with the police?

In 1974, I got a speeding ticket, and I’m relieved that that’s the extent of any trouble with the law!


What are four things you can’t live without?

It’d be easy to say I couldn’t live without a particular person–a relationship, such as a spouse or parent. But I’ve learned the hard way that it isn’t true. You do survive the death of loved ones.

So what four things are necessary for life? Think survivalism: Air, water, food, and shelter.

However, to live a fulfilling life, I would need love, laughter, the beauty of nature, and the good health to enjoy them.


How do you keep your writing different from all the others that write in this particular genre?

Paranormal creatures and cryptids fascinate me. Each legend or local myth is so unique to its geographical area that the stories seem to write themselves. Perhaps my writing is different because of how intensely these supernatural characters seize my imagination.


What are the most important attributes to remaining sane as a writer?

Writing a novel is a long-term investment of time, energy, and creativity. But the droughts of self-confidence can be demoralizing, and even if/when you finish (YAY!) there’s the distinct possibility—let’s be honest—probability that your book will be rejected at least initially, if not time and time again.

As any novelist can attest, there are moments/months during the writing process where the story’s direction evades you, or self-doubt raises its ugly head, and it isn’t easy to keep going.

So what can you do? I’d say there are four key attributes to remaining sane as a writer.

Go outside every day. Walk your dog. Immerse yourself in nature—and you just may be inspired. Ground yourself—literally.

Early to bed and early to rise. I’m most productive between 3:30 and 6:30 in the morning. From there, productivity gradually declines until it disappears altogether around 4:30 in the afternoon.

Make time for your spouse / family / friends. I know, I get it…When you’re on a roll, it’s hard to stop writing, but try to maintain a balance between your professional and personal time. Chuckling with friends or snuggling with your spouse has its benefits, both short- and long-term.

Take a break—or a sabbatical. Like laundry, your novel will be there, waiting. If you need a “mental health” day or even a week or month, take it. You’ll return to your novel with renewed energy, a fresh perspective, and possibly the resolution/ending that had previously eluded you.

Keep your cool when self-doubts sneak in. Stay positive when (not if) you receive rejections—they’re all part of the writing process. Most importantly, keep creating!


About Author Karen Hulene Bartell

author of fox taleAuthor of the Trans-Pecos and Sacred Emblem series, Karen is a best-selling author, keynote speaker, wife, and all-around pilgrim of life, who writes multicultural, offbeat love stories. Born to rolling-stone parents who moved often, Bartell found her earliest playmates as fictional friends in books. Paperbacks became her portable pals. Ghost stories kept her up at night—reading feverishly. The paranormal was her passion. Novels offered an imaginative escape. An only child, she began writing her first novel at the age of nine, learning the joy of creating her own happy endings. Professor emeritus of the University of Texas at Austin, Karen resides in the Texas Piney Woods with her husband Peter and her “mews”—three rescued cats and a rescued *Cat*ahoula Leopard dog.


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