Spotlight on Fighting Dirty by Lori Foster (@LoriFoster) – Read an Excerpt

Spotlight on Fighting Dirty Fighting Dirty

  • Series: An Ultimate Novel
  • Mass Market Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: HQN Books (February 23, 2016)

He’s the hottest MMA fighter in the game, but one woman is ready to try out a few steamy moves of her own in an unforgettable new novel from New York Times bestselling author Lori Foster 

With the life he’s led and the muscles he’s gained, Armie Jacobson isn’t afraid of anything. Except maybe Merissa Colter’s effect on him. It’s not just that she’s his best friend’s little sister. Fact is, she deserves better. Women pursue him for one night of pleasure, and that’s all he wants to offer. Until rescuing Merissa from a robbery leads to the most erotic encounter of his life.

Good girl meets bad boy. It’s a story that rarely ends well. But Merissa is taking matters into her own hands. No matter how he views himself, the Armie she knows is brave, honorable and completely loyal. And as past demons and present-day danger collide, they’re both about to learn what’s truly worth fighting for…

Buy, read, and discuss Fighting Dirty

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Read an Excerpt from Fighting Dirty

Bestselling author Lori Foster shares a fighting scene from the last book in her Ultimate Series, Fighting Dirty

Fighting Dirty by Lori Foster is the final book in her addicting and wicked hot MMA-themed Ultimate Series. Check out the excerpt below to see just what we mean. Happy reading!

***

“Jesus, Quick. You’re a freak of nature. You know that, right?”

Armie Jacobson, known as Quick to his fighter friends, ignored the complaint and threw a few more jabs, then a solid body shot, making Justice, a six-foot-five heavyweight, double over. Stepping back, Armie flexed his hands, bounced on the balls of his feet, and waited.

Unfortunately, Justice only put his hands on his knees and sucked air.

Frowning, Armie removed his mouthpiece. “Seriously? Come on, dude. Let’s go.”

“Screw you.” Schlepping back to his corner, Justice grabbed up a water bottle. He doused his head and chest, and then started chugging.

Aware of others watching, Armie said nothing. Everyone worked out, trained and sparred in the rec center, but lately, whenever he did, a dozen or more people stopped to watch. He didn’t mind an audience. Hell, he couldn’t be a competitor if he did. For the most part he paid no attention. Once he got in the cage, he went into a zone and the world receded.

But this insane ogling shit, like he was a damned sideshow, bugged him big-time.

A trickle of sweat tracked down his temple from his headgear, and he swiped a forearm over his face. His muscles burned and more sweat soaked his chest, abs and rolled down his spine. He was figuring out what to say to Justice to get him back in action when he picked up her scent. The faint perfume cut through the rec center air, thick with the smells of sweaty men working hard.

Trying to look casual, Armie stared at Justice but in his peripheral vision he saw her striding across the room. No mistaking that long-legged gait, or that longer dark hair. He swallowed, frozen.

“What?” Justice asked, sounding both suspicious and ridiculously alarmed with the way Armie had locked onto him.

Armie shook his head – and thankfully Merissa disappeared into the hallway leading to the offices.

Releasing a breath, he looked toward the clock and frowned. Yeah, they’d been at it for a while, maybe longer than he’d intended. His cardio was better than most, definitely better than Justice’s, the big lug.

Armie walked over to him. “You need to get more gas in the tank.”

“Go fuck yourself.”

When Armie grinned, Justice eyed him warily. “Stop it.”

That switched his grin to a frown. “Bitchy much?”

Justice slouched against the wall and glared back. “You shouldn’t be able to grin, you prick. You should be as tired as me.”

A natural trainer, Armie took pity on him. “You’re a lot bigger.” As a six-foot tall middleweight, Armie stood five inches shorter and weighed a lot less than Justice.

“Lotta good it does me.”

Squatting down in front of him, Armie said low, “People are watching, so stop whining.”

Justice’s gaze slipped past him and he groaned.

“Yeah, the big dogs are here again.” Damned nosy bastards. Ever since he’d signed with the SBC, the powers-that-be had been scoping him out like their newest lab rat. “Stand up, go another two minutes with me, then we’ll call it quits.”

Huffing out a breath, Justice lumbered to his feet. “Freak of nature,” he muttered again, but he followed Armie out to the center of the ring, and he did his best.

His best was nowhere near good enough against Armie.

But then, they fought for very different reasons.

Twenty minutes later, fresh from the showers, Armie was ready to head out. The mid February weather left frost on every surface, so he tugged on a stocking hat over his still wet hair and pulled a thick hooded sweatshirt on over his clothes. Carrying his gym bag, he entered the main area cautiously. This late in the day, the mats were now cleared. Miles and Brand took their turn mopping with sanitizer. Many of the lights were turned down and only the core group of friends remained, clustered together in conversation.

The SBC heads were gone, and better still, he didn’t see Merissa anywhere. She’d probably just been dropping off paperwork for her brother, Cannon, who owned the rec center.

Relieved, Armie started for the door. With any luck, he’d manage it before someone stopped him –

“Hey, Armie.”

Damn. After a slight hesitation, he turned to where Denver, Stack and Cannon all stood together. “What’s this? The three Married Musketeers?”

Stack, who’d only married a month ago, reeked of satisfaction. “Aw, he’s jealous.”

Yup. But since he’d die before admitting it, Armie said, “Nope.”

Denver, still a newlywed himself, grinned. “Probably lonely too, poor guy.”

Very. Groupies, orgies, and random one-night stands could only take a guy so far. He had a rep for sexual excess, and that’s what the ladies wanted from him. That, and nothing more.

Checking the time, Armie said, “I could be lonely with three very nice ladies if you yahoos would let me leave.”

Unlike the others, Cannon didn’t laugh. “Seriously? Again?”

Why the hell did his best friend have to sound so disapproving? And if he knew why Armie had made those plans, he’d probably be pissed as well as disapproving, because it was thoughts of Cannon’s little sis that he worked so hard to obliterate. Not that a foursome would accomplish much beyond taking the edge off. His obsession with Merissa seemed to amplify by the day.

Copping an attitude, Armie shrugged. “Yeah, really. Unless you have something –” Or someone “- better for me to do?”

“As a matter of fact, that’s why I wanted to talk to you.”

Well hell. He hadn’t figured on that. Armie ran a hand over his hair. “Then let’s hear it.”

“Yvette wanted everyone to come over tonight to hang out and visit.”

Armie adored Yvette. She was perfect for Cannon and a real sweetheart. But damn… “Who all will be there?”

With a very knowing smile, Cannon said, “Everyone important to us. So don’t miss it.”

Double damn. Merissa definitely counted as important.

Armie didn’t want to, but with all the guys eyeballing him, how could he refuse? “What time?”

“Now.”

Armie scowled. “What do you mean, now?”

“Now, as in you don’t have time to do anything else, so forget it.”

Justice came dragging out, his faux-hawk hair still wet, his goatee in need of a trim, and his cauliflower ears worse than ever. He shoulder-bumped Armie as he passed. “If you hadn’t been determined to cripple me, maybe you’d have had more time for playing.”

“Wuss,” Armie accused with a grin.

“He has a point,” Brand said as he pushed a mop bucket toward them.

Miles, giving one last swipe of the mat, followed him. “Keep pushing that hard and you’re liable to hurt something before the competition.”

“I still have two months.” Two months of freedom and he’d spend it however he wanted. Sure, Armie knew there were established training methods, but they weren’t for him. Never had been, never would be – no matter who he fought for.

“This isn’t local fighting anymore,” Denver reminded him.

As if he’d forget.

“Carter Fletcher isn’t a slouch,” Miles added. “You might not walk through him like you do the local guys.”

“They call him Chaos for a reason.” Brand frowned. “I’ve seen him fight and he’s unpredictable.”

Yeah, so his first opponent was supposed to be a stud. Big deal. Armie shrugged to show he didn’t really care. Not that long ago the SBC, the most widely known MMA organization, had run him to ground and all but coerced him into signing on with them. Cannon had helped with that, pushing him to take the next step since he’d already demolished all the records in local venues.

It was a big step, too, something all the other guys had worked for. The SBC paid a lot more and offered incredible name recognition. Their fighters traveled the world to compete.

But Armie liked being low key; it was a hell of a lot safer for multiple reasons. If it wasn’t for Cannon –

“He’ll do fine against Carter,” Cannon said. “And don’t worry about his training. Armie motivates differently, that’s all.”

Always, no matter what, Cannon had his back. As the only other person to know why he’d avoided fame and fortune, Cannon understood. They weren’t related, but they were brothers all the same.

Which was the second biggest reason he couldn’t, shouldn’t, crave Merissa the way he did. Cannon protected those he loved.

And he loved his sister a lot.

“It’s getting late,” Cannon added. “Don’t want to keep Yvette waiting.”

Glad for the switch in topic, Armie pulled out his phone. “Guess I better make some calls and let the ladies know I won’t make it after all.”

Stack looked at Denver. “If it was anyone but Armie, I’d think he was making it up.”

“Lonely,” Denver confirmed.

Armie walked away knowing they were right.


About the author, Lori Foster Lori Foster

Lori Foster is a New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author with books from a variety of publishers, including Berkley/Jove, Kensington, St. Martin’s, Harlequin and Silhouette. Lori has been a recipient of the prestigious RT Book Reviews Career Achievement Award for Series Romantic Fantasy, and for Contemporary Romance. She’s had top-selling books for Amazon, Waldenbooks and the BGI Group.

Connect with Lori

Website | Facebook | Twitter


Lori Foster’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS: TLC Book Tours

Monday, February 8th: Bibliotica – Excerpt 1

Wednesday, February 10th: Read Love Blog – Cover breakdown

Thursday, February 11th: Books a la Mode – Valentine’s post

Friday, February 12th: A Chick Who Reads – Arnie, a fan favorite character

Monday, February 15th: Bewitched Bookworms – Series overview

Wednesday, February 17th: Written Love Reviews

Friday, February 19th: Worth Getting in Bed For

Friday, February 19th: Mignon Mykel {Reviews}

Monday, February 22nd: Reading Reality

Monday, February 22nd: Let Them Read Books

Tuesday, February 23rd: Majorly Delicious

Wednesday, February 24th: Stranded in Chaos

Thursday, February 25th: Bibliophilia, Please

Friday, February 26th: The Sassy Bookster

Spotlight on Knight of Flame by Scott Eder

About the book, Knight of Flame

Knight of Flame

Fire. The most chaotic of the primal elements. When wielded properly by the Knight of Flame, it burns like the sun. Otherwise, it slowly consumes the Knight, burning away his control, driving him towards dark deeds.

Stationed in Tampa, FL, Develore Quinteele, sixth Knight of Flame, waits impatiently for the predicted emergence of the last Gray Lord, his Order’s ancient enemy. Hampered by a centuries-old tragedy, Dev knows of only one way to control his elemental power—rage. It broils just below his surface, waiting for the slightest provocation to set it alight.
Anticipating Dev’s transition from asset to liability, his commander assigns a young guardian, Wren, to report on Dev’s actions. Torn between duty and love, Wren struggles to save her Knight; but, after a brutal attack by the Gray Lord’s minions for which Dev is wrongly blamed, he’s stripped of his freedom until he regains control.

With the help of his fellow Knights, can Dev regain his balance and unlock his full elemental potential in time to prevent the destruction of all life in Tampa?

Buy a copy at Amazon.com


About the Author, Scott Eder

Scott Eder

Since he was a kid, Scott wanted to be an author and explored many genres through high school and college. Fantasy, though, captivated his soul. Tales of Knights and magic, dragons and elves filled his dreams. After greasing the gears of the corporate machine for many years, he escaped the Information Technology vortex to focus full-time on writing. The stories he’d envisioned years ago—of nobility and strife, honor and chaos—demanded they be brought to life.

Scott lives with his wife, two children, and a giant Chihuahua on the west coast of Florida.

Connect with Scott

Website: ScottEder.net
Facebook: Scott Eder
Twitter: @ScottEder


Read an excerpt from Knight of Flame

Chapter One

Knights don’t dance, thought Develor Quinteele.  Knuckles white, he wrung the leather-wrapped steering wheel and swallowed hard.  The muted roar of the rented Jag’s high-performance engine and smooth-as-silk ride did nothing to dispel his apprehension.  Wren could have picked anything, but she chose dancing.  He jammed a finger under the rigid collar of his first modern suit and yanked it away from his skin.

Great. Just great.

Dev stretched to adjust the rear-view mirror and ripped the seam of his jacket.  Armani stretch wool, my ass.  A growl rumbled in his chest and he glared at Wren, but she seemed oblivious to his distress.

“How much farther?”  Wren’s excitement tumbled out with each word.  The sun’s last rays reflected off the silver sequins of her micro-dress, sparkling across the car’s dark chocolate interior.  She shifted position, adjusted her dress, and crossed her legs.  Despite her fidgeting, her head remained still, focused on the distant horizon, straining to get her first look at Club Mastodon.

Dev smiled through his growing unease.  Though somewhere in her early twenties, Wren reminded him of a small child driving up to the gates of Disney World for the first time.  Her usually tense and critical Asian features, soft, eager and innocent.  Seeing her excitement helped steady his nerves…a little.

“Just a few more minutes.  You know I’m missing a ‘Three Stooges’ marathon for this, don’t you?”  Dev checked his mirrors, vision in constant motion, and raked the hair out of his eyes.  The thin, wavy strands felt foreign to his calloused fingers.  He couldn’t remember the last time he had more than a dark prickly shadow on top of his head, let alone mussed brown locks.

With a careless wave of his hand, he grazed the new bruise over his left eye.  Damn, forgot about that.  He prodded the tender skin, trying to gauge the size of the purpling evidence.  So far, he’d managed to keep his fights at work from Wren.  If she found out, he’d never hear the end of it.  The last time she went on and on about him being reckless and not following Stillman’s order to keep a low profile.  Whatever.  He brushed his hair forward, trying to cover the injured area, and hoped for the best.

“This place won’t be crowded, will it?”  Dev asked.  “You know crowds and I don’t mix.”

“Mmhm.”  Wren’s arm shot out, pointed ahead and to the right.  “There it is.”  The rest of her words blurred together, “I can’t believe you got us on the list.  I mean, like, I’ve never been to a place like this.”  She turned her sparkling green eyes on Dev.  “Do you think a lot of movie stars will be here?”

“Breathe, Wren.”  Dev took the exit off I-275 south, just in sight of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge, and stopped at the traffic light across from the club.  When Club Mastodon first opened he’d read about the local business leaders raising an uproar over how quickly the permits, zoning   and associated building minutia were pushed through.  But, when the club was bank-rolled by Alexander Gray, one of the head honchos at Daegon Gray, the normal red-tape covered bullshit disappeared.

Spotlight On & First Chapter Of: What Remains by Bart Baker

About the Book, What Remains:

What Remains

When Conner Carter is banished from New York for cheating on his socialite wife, he flies across country to Sonoma, California to stay with his brother Cody, Cody’s ridiculously wealthy husband, Rhett, and their two adopted Cambodian children. Since childhood, Conner has been jealous of the gilded life Cody has led, but Conner learns that what glitters often tarnishes and shatters in shocking and dangerous ways. Having always taken life’s easiest route, Conner now finds that path closed when he is forced to step up for his brother when Cody’s personal life crumbles after Rhett goes missing in Colombia on a documentary film shoot. Conner’s world unravels when the woman he’s fallen in love with, their black Puerto Rican nanny, Zinzi, finds her violent past catching up with her. From the tattered and surprising pieces of these characters’ intense and complicated lives, these people will discover the strength in What Remains.

Buy a copy from Amazon


About the Author, Bart Baker:

Bart Baker

With two feature films, eleven movies for television, four television series credits, as well as eight theatrical plays produced around the world, What Remains is Bart’s second novel. Bart’s first novel, Honeymoon with HarryHONEYMOON WITH HARRY, was a critical and commercial success and the movie rights were bought by Warner Bros./New Line Cinema for a feature film. He’s recently sold a film project in conjunction with the hit song by Miranda Lambert, OVER YOU, to the Lifetime Network. Bart lives in Ellisville, Missouri with his family.

Connect with Bart:

Website: BartBaker.com
Goodreads: What Remains


Read the first chapter of What Remains, by Bart Baker:

CONNER

“Do I know you?” I asked, casually flirting as I shook the hand of the outstanding brunette in the Versace cocktail dress. It’s a skill I’ve perfected for these opaque charity fundraisers I get bullied into attending.
“We slept together two years ago,” she stated with a razor’s edge etched into her voice. “You never called.”
Not the best statement to make when I’m standing with my wife of three years.
Now before you cast stones, it’s not like I was the only one cheating throughout our marriage. She had her dalliances with men far more successful than I, men she gravitated towards once we were married as if to show me what she hoped I’d become while simultaneously reminding me that I never would. I possessed no natural status of my own.
Any cachet I owned, I married into.

Continue reading the first chapter of What Remains!

Book Excerpt: Upir and the Monster Gang by Sharron Thornton & Raymond Thornton

Upir & the Monster Gang

About the Series, Upir and the Monster Gang, by Sharron & Raymond Thornton:

Upir and the Monster Gang Cover

Coming from a long line of highly respected vampires, Upir knew that going to Neewollah, the Monster Mausoleum, would help him live up to his family’s reputation, but he never anticipated the terrifying turn his stay there would take. Upon entering, Upir befriends several strange creatures and their nights soon become treacherous when they have to dodge flying skulls whose hollow eye sockets shimmer with bright blue lights, avoid huge plants with tongue-like tentacles that devour young monsters, and run from a mad scientist who loves to use the monster students in his experiments. Most of all, they try to stay away from Muriel, an ill-tempered, nasty gorgon girl with slithering snakes for hair. She is the leader of three cantankerous monsters that follow her every command. Her group is bent on destroying Upir and his gang.

Without warning the young monsters find themselves entangled in a plot to destroy the Monster race. Will they escape the clutches of this horrifying villain and alert the Monster world, or will they become his loyal soldiers?


Read an Excerpt from Upir and the Monster Gang:

The Welcoming Committee

“Yeah, you kid!” A monster with an enormous bumpy head, bulbous nose and winged ears pointed at the vampire. A single tooth protruded from the troll’s lower lip as he gaped at Upir.

A wolf-boy, his grin revealing sharp pointy teeth, was with the group. His eyes had a hungry look to them.

Upir swallowed and tried to sound calm. “Yeah, what do you want?” he asked.

A green goblin boy, a skateboard under one arm, shoved his way between the other two and glared at Upir. “We’re the welcoming committee around here,” he said sarcastically.

Upir doubted that. “Okay,” he said slowly.

The goblin boy pointed up at the troll. “He’s Groks. I’m Gordon.” He tilted his head at the wolf boy. “And that’s Raff.”

Raff sneered, “What’s your name?”

Without thinking, Upir said his whole name. “Upir Amarande.”

“Yooper! Yooper!” Groks laughed, slobber spilling down his chin. “What kinda stupid name–”

“Move it!” A girl with dozens of slithering snakes for hair came forward as the other three monsters stepped aside. The gorgon stood before Upir, her breath smelled of swamp water; the snakes on her head hissed and stretched toward him. “What did you say your name was?”

Upir told her.

“Amarande, huh?” She looked Upir up and down and smiled, “Well look what we’ve got here boys, a little monster royalty in our midst.”

Upir started to shake his head, but before he could speak, the gorgon stuck out her hand. “Glad to have you aboard,” she said.

Upir shook her hand as he asked, “Aboard?”

Groks groaned. “Muriel, we don’t need a vamp–”

“Shut up, troll!” She turned back to Upir. “My gang,” she said as her head tilted toward the monsters behind her. “We plan on running this place, and I’m inviting you to join.”

Upir smiled. “Serious?” he asked. He didn’t like the fact that, once again, he’d been befriended because of his name. But to run with the in-crowd, he could deal with that. “Thanks,” he said.

“What’s going on!” a voice screamed behind them. The kids turned. The
hunchback lumbered toward them, his hump weighing him down to the floor. “What are you kids doing in the hall? It’s almost lights out. Get to your rooms!” Turning to his hump he mumbled, “Hugo always has to chase kids all over the place.”

Muriel lowered her gaze and innocently said, “We’re going now, Mr. Hugo.” Turning to her gang she growled, “Let’s go!” She slapped Upir on the arm as she brushed past him. “Welcome to my gang, Amarande. See ya around.”

“Yeah, see ya around,” Groks said hitting Upir on the back so hard that he stumbled into the wall.

Raff snickered and Gordon hooted. Muriel called out another “Shut up!” before they were out of sight.

Upir pushed open the creaky door and entered a dark, stone-like cave.

Jagged pieces of rock, some crooked as bad teeth, protruded from the ceiling and floor. Nestled in an alcove was a bunk bed made of heavily-polished dragon bones. On one wall rested a long narrow desk of stone and against the other wall sat a black coffin, just his size. The room smelled like the dust of ages past. And although there was no window, a strange light emanated across the ceiling. Looking around the room, Upir noticed a ghost hovering above the top bunk. The floating boy wore a long transparent shroud; a green woolen scarf was slung around his neck. A long chain, wrapped around his waist, clinked as it drifted lazily
in the air. Upir saw the rock wall through the boy’s glowing form.

The ghost boy smiled making his blue eyes look bluer and his plain face look mischievous. “Hi,” he said. “I’m Gusty,”

Upir smiled back. “I’m Upir,” he replied, glad he hadn’t offered his last name. He knew everyone would find out soon enough. But until then, maybe he’d have a chance to make friends on his own.

Gusty moved, seeping in and out of form like a genie near the mouth of its bottle. Upir blinked a few times, not sure the boy was really there.

“Yeah, he’s really there,” said another boy who emerged from a pile of blankets on the bottom bunk. He stood up, his rumpled flannel shirt and jeans hung limply from his stick frame. “Gusty likes to show off,” he said. The boy’s head was a carved hollow pumpkin. Light flowed through the triangular holes; the yellowish rays reflected across the room like searchlights. The grin on his face was cheerful. “I’m Payne,” he said to Upir. “Welcome to Neewollah.”


A Message from the Authors, Sharron Thornton & Raymond Thornton:

Upir and the Monster Gang

We’re on our way to be published! My name is Sharron Thornton and I wrote a children’s novel entitled Upir and the Monster Gang. The book has 60 full page, full colored illustrations which were done by my son, Raymond Thornton. We have chosen to use an online, crowdfunding site called Kickstarter to begin this amazing venture.
Beginning October 1st and running through November 16th we are doing a pre-launch, first edition sale of our book. Attached to this email is a link to our Kickstarter page. There you can watch our video and see some of the Upir and the Monster Gang products we have listed. One of the great things about Kickstarter is that it’s like a grassroots campaign that spreads and then builds momentum.

After the Kickstarter we have marketing and distribution lined up to take Upir and the Monster Gang to the next level, but we need your help getting it started. Please share our Kickstarter page with your family and friends on your email lists, social media and any other networks you may have and then ask them to share it also.
http://kck.st/19jvVMG.

Connect with Sharron and/or Raymond:

Web: UpirAndTheMonsterGang.com
Facebook: Upir and the Monster Gang
Twitter (Sharron): @SharronThornton
Twitter (Raymond): @RaymondThornton

Introducing: The Alchemist Agenda by Marty Weiss (with Excerpt)

The Alchemist Agenda

ABOUT THE ALCHEMIST AGENDA

When Charlie Rocklin and his company Gold Diggers Exploration set out to recover a 17th century shipwreck, they discover an undocumented Nazi submarine with enigmatic symbols. Ariel Ellis, a femme fatale historian with a mysterious past, proves that the U-boat contains the key to a formula more valuable than any sunken treasure, and more deadly than any weapon that has ever existed. In this globetrotting international adventure, Charlie and Ariel uncover an accelerating tempest of secrecy, lies, and agendas, fighting not only for the truth, but for their lives. Weiss’s debut novel is a lightning-paced story with surprises at every turn, and shows us that our personal legends may be more real than we ever could have imagined.

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Purchase at:

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Add to Goodreads:

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ABOUT MARTY WEISS

Marty Weiss was born and raised in Chicago and decided that he wanted to make movies after spending a summer working on the set of John Hughes’ movie “Sixteen Candles.” After earning a B.S. in Journalism from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, and an M.F.A. in film and television from New York University, he directed national and international TV commercials for major Blue Chip brands as well as TV movies. He helmed his first feature film, “Vampires: The Turning,” for Sony/Screen Gems Entertainment – an action/horror movie that evolved out of John Carpenter’s “Vampires.” It was filmed in Chiang Mai, Thailand and released worldwide in 2005. Weiss has filmed throughout North and South America, Eastern and Western Europe, and Southeast Asia, and has garnered numerous industry awards. His screen adaption of his debut novel, “The Alchemist Agenda,” was the honored with the Best Screenplay award from Amazon Studios and is currently on their development slate for production. Weiss lives in Los Angeles with his wife Elisabeth and children Jasmine and Jake.

Visit his blog at http://www.martinishotfilms.tv

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Read an Excerpt from The Alchemist Agenda

Just as Charlie turned off the shower, he heard the fall on the stairs, even though his bathroom door had been closed and his office was set apart from the others. Then everything went silent, unusually so. He haphazardly dried, quickly put on his street clothes, made sure he stuffed his wallet and his black book in his back pockets, the two personal effects he only left behind when he was training, and then secured the necklace with the crest around his neck, now the third item he would no longer leave without.

He peered out into the hallway.

It was too quiet. Something was not right.

He walked into the lower level offices. Nothing out of place. Then he looked behind a table and saw:
Two dead bodies.

Horrified, he moved through the offices, searching every turn and crevice until he approached the staircase where the oceanographer’s body was sprawled on the steps.

Charlie shifted into stealth survival mode, quietly made his way to one of the gear lockers, grabbed a dive knife, and crept to the next room.

Wade and Luke hunted maniacally through the banks of computers and equipment. But it was Ray who found the U-2008 bell up in Charlie’s office, and moments later, the locked case beside the desk. He smiled instantly because he had worked for a custom locksmith all through high school, a job he had loved because it taught him how to crack similar safe designs built to keep children from their parent’s firearms. It didn’t take him sixty seconds to open this lock.
The Shackers’ orders were specific. They were told to find a nautical GPS and not to come back without it.

And there it was.

Ray moved into the computer room where Luke and Wade were searching and excitedly waved the nautical GPS. “I got it!”

Luke grabbed the device and looked it over. “You’re shitting me.”

“Let me see.” Wade tossed aside a computer he was searching through and went to join the other two, but a voice stopped him.

“Don’t move.”

The three Shackers turned to see Charlie pointing an air-powered speargun. “Set it down on the table and drop your guns.”

Wade almost laughed. He had been jumped, fired at, and held up by insurgents with much more firepower, and hatred. He wasn’t about to allow this freakin’ frogman get in his way. As Luke and Ray dropped their weapons, Wade drew and fired.

Charlie dove for cover behind the shelving unit and crawled into the gear room to hide behind a rack of wet suits.
Ray grabbed the bell and the GPS from Wade and packed them into the empty pack he had strapped over his shoulder. “Fuck’m, we got what we came for.”

“Orders were to leave nobody alive,” Wade objected. “Move it.”

Wade and Luke stormed into the gear room with their guns poised; Ray took his time, but trailed right behind.
They saw no one, but heard Charlie’s voice: “What the hell do you want?”

Wade put his finger to his lips so that Luke and Wade wouldn’t open their traps, then stalked slowly toward the direction of the voice. “Same thing as you.”

There was a long silence as Wade searched behind the racks of wetsuits, and then Charlie dropped down from the storage shelves, knocked the gun out of Wade’s hand and slammed him to the floor.

Wade loved close combat—it was his forté—but Charlie didn’t give him the chance to show it. He dropped a heavy steel dive tank on Wade’s face, breaking his nose on impact and knocking him unconscious.

Luke and Ray couldn’t fire their guns with Wade so close, so they charged Charlie. He met them with a rapid flurry, shoving his elbow into Ray’s gut and an upper cut into Luke’s chin, and then he tucked and rolled as Luke’s gun fired, a shot that hit the back wall. Charlie reached for a dive knife, sprung to his feet and threw it. It flew past Ray’s ear. Charlie took cover on the floor and crawled toward an exit as Ray popped off more shots.

Charlie burst outside into the alley. Someone was already there. Through the sun in his eyes he could only make out a silhouetted figure approaching…

It was Wade, his face covered in blood from the dive tank, his gun in his hand.

There was nothing to duck behind. Everything went still.

And then came a shot.

When Charlie realized he hadn’t been hit, he turned and saw Ariel leaning on the hood of her car, just-fired gun in hand.

Wade collapsed on the alley pavement, a bullet through his heart. He barely had a moment to realize that this was his final battle, or to agonize over the possibility that his father would learn that he had been brought down by a woman, his final humiliation.

“I told you there wouldn’t be much time,” she said. “We have to get out of here!”

The exit door swung open, but before Ray and Luke could scope the perimeter, Ariel fired one more shot, which hit the steel door, and forced them back inside.

“Gimme your keys.” Charlie approached with an open hand. “They’ll try to leave through the front entrance. We’ll cut them off—”

Ariel closed the keys in her fist and gestured to the passenger seat. “There’s a lot more than those two to worry about. Get in.”

Charlie got inside the car, weighing his options, trying to think like a diver, remaining calm and breathing steadily as Ariel sped the car out of the alley.

“They got the nautical GPS,” Charlie said. “They can find the site.”

“You still have the crest?”

Charlie held the necklace under his shirt. “Yeah.”

“And you can find the sub without the GPS, right?”

“Right… Watch out!”

A car tore out of another alley in front of them. Ariel skillfully maneuvered and skid, missing them by inches, then took off in the other direction.

The other car spun around and came after them. Ray was driving. Luke was riding shotgun as he fired a few useless rounds.

“Drive straight, would you?” Luke ordered.

“Your aim is for shit,” was all Ray could come back with.

The chase sent them weaving through the office park and into a residential area. Ariel remained cool as a cucumber as she turned onto a lawn and through several backyards, like an obstacle course she knew well. She picked up their conversation where she left off, just like she did with her bi-weekly lectures: “Just because they can get to the U-boat doesn’t mean they can get inside. The key isn’t easy to find and it’s not in America.”

“The key? I thought you said there was a code,” Charlie said. “Is it a key or a code?”

“I’ll explain everything, as long as we’re partners in this.” She turned onto another street, and then glanced back to be sure she’d lost their pursuers. “Are we partners?”

“I haven’t had the best luck with partners.”

“Maybe you should move on to something else then. Without the key, you’ll never get inside.”

“I don’t give up until I have all the answers.”

“That’s why we’re a perfect fit.”

She knew she had him; he knew he didn’t have a choice. “Where are we going?” he asked.

She turned onto the entrance ramp to the Turnpike. “Prague.”

“Just like that, without any tickets, passports, or luggage?”

“Just like that.”

She stepped on the gas and headed for John F. Kennedy International Airport.