Monday, April 6, 2015

Blog Tour: Mini-Review and Excerpt! Empathy, by Carolyn Wren

Welcome to this stop in the 
Empathy Blog Tour,
sponsored by
Bewitching Book Tours!!

I'm featuring an excerpt,
along with a mini-review!

(Emotional Chains, Book 1)
Carolyn Wren
Kindle Edition, 243 pages
Secret Cravings Publishing
March 23, 2015
Cover Artist: Dawn Dominique
Mystery, Paranormal Romance, 
Urban Fantasy

Oliver Lord belongs to one of three special families, empaths who feel emotions as a physical sense. Quiet and reserved, and accustomed to keeping his abilities hidden, Oliver is drawn inexorably to a woman he’s never met. The woman who made his brother’s last year of life so happy.

When Zoe Daniels, talented sculptor, loses her fiancé before their wedding, she can’t imagine finding love again, until she meets Jasper’s unknown brother, a man so different, yet so achingly familiar to the man she adored. What is Oliver’s secret, and why is he so determined to keep her at arm’s length?

A violent kidnapping and murder forces the empaths from the shadows to seek justice for one of their own. Oliver turns to Zoe, needing her comfort and love. Can she accept him for who he is?

Oliver and two powerful empathic friends need to track down the kidnappers before they strike again, but how do you solve a murder, when your only clue is emotion?


This author has certainly caught my interest with this little gem of an excerpt!  I want to get to know these characters, to see how they work together to resolve the unique conundrums they have been challenged with, and, most of all, to find out how their relationship pans out.

I especially like the fact that Zoe is a sculptor. The fact that she's also an empath must surely help her in her creative work. From this scene, it's also quite obvious that she's very much in tune with nature.

As for Oliver, I like the way he's drawn to her. He can peek into her mind, and therefore, knows that she's a good person. Yet, he tries not to intrude on her inner world, and feels guilty for having done so. This marks him as a good person, too.

I love the way this scene is set up, as well as the fact that they have a common link -- Jasper, the brother and friend they have both lost.

Wren's writing flows, and her plot is fascinating!  I love the mixing of genres, too!  I'm snapping up this book right away, even though I don't normally read e-books!

Update, 2:05 PM
Ms. Wren has just informed me
that this book will be
available in paperback later 
on this year!!!

Zoe sat with her back to the tree as she always did, knees drawn up. Thin cords dangled from her ears, attached to the smart phone at her hip. Her feet tapped out a rhythm to a tune Oliver couldn’t hear. She put down the book in her hands and tilted her head to the dappled sunlight peeking through the branches. A smile lit her face as the beams played like mischievous children on her closed eyelids. The old forest was lush and vibrant, a calm oasis of another age. Jasper had always loved spending time here, lost in the peace and quiet. No doubt he’d brought Zoe here. That she’d feel close to him in this isolated place they’d shared was understandable.

Oliver shut his eyes and reached out to read her. If he looked deep inside, he could find the essence of the brother he missed so much. He tried not to. The first time it had seemed an intrusion, but sometimes he couldn’t help himself. She was warmth and goodness. Her calm was a soothing balm to his nerves and a link to a beloved lost sibling. He indulged himself and took a tiny moment. She’ll never know.

“Why don’t you come out from behind that tree?”

Oliver’s eyes flew open at the sound of her voice. He’d not planned on being seen, and normally when he chose that option, he wasn’t. It was a simple, foolproof empathic trick, one he’d been able to do since childhood. Remaining silent and unmoving, he projected a low level of emotion in her direction. Disinterest. Indifference. Boredom. Every gentle empathic nudge was designed to increase her need to walk away and not look back.

She continued to talk as she stood. Brushing leaves from her trousers, she walked toward him with determination in her blue eyes. “If you keep lurking, it just looks suspicious.”

The moment their gazes met, he caught a flare of something. Surprise? Confusion? Oliver regained his composure. “I’m sorry if I scared you. I was enjoying the sunshine. You looked as if you were deep in thought. I didn’t want to disturb your privacy.”

“What about all the other times? Were you concerned about my privacy then, too?”

She’d noticed him before? Oliver’s much vaulted confidence of his own abilities took a distinct dive. “I’m sorry. It’s a pleasant spot, somewhere I enjoy and find calming.” Only because you’re here. “I won’t intrude on your peace any longer.”

“Do I know you?” She tilted her head to one side. The filtered sun caught the blonde strands of her short feathered haircut, making them shine.


“Do you know who I am?”


“May I ask you another question?”

Oliver frowned. “Of course?”

“Why are you lying to me? And who were you to Jasper?”

Carolyn Wren is the award-winning author of a seven-part romantic suspense series called The Protectors. Having spent her working life as a bookkeeper and finance officer for international companies, she discovered a passion for fiction writing in 2009. Assuming it was some sort of mid-life crisis, she kept it a secret for six months. In an impulsive move, she entered "The Emerald", a prestigious writing contest for unpublished authors run by the Romance Writers of Australia. Much to her utter shock, she won it. This was followed shortly after by a finalist placing in the International Daphne Du Maurier Awards for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense.
Carolyn received a seven-book contract with Secret Cravings Publishing in 2011.  Her debut published work, Diplomat’s Daughter, won the RWA ‘Ella’ award for novella of the year.
To date, The Protectors series has received four award nominations, resulting in two trophies.
Carolyn’s other works include a very naughty ghost novella, Ghosts of Grace Cottage, that she wrote during a stormy winter day.  Her new series, the murder/mystery/urban fantasy, Emotional Chains, is her latest obsession.
She writes full-time now, enjoys every minute of it, and loves hearing from readers.


Be sure to visit the other stops
on this tour, which you
can access by clicking on this button!


  1. Thank you for hosting me on the very first day of my blog hop. I'm glad you enjoyed the excerpt. Empathy was a joy to write. I hope readers derive the same pleasure from reading about the Empaths. Carolyn Wren.

    1. Hi, Carolyn!

      You're very welcome! It was a pleasure to host you and your book!! Yes, I really enjoyed the excerpt, and want to buy and read the book, even though, as I stated in the mini-review, I usually don't read e-books. That's because I much prefer printed books. So I'm making an exception for your book! And, I'm sure other readers will enjoy reading it, as well!

      Thanks for stopping by and leaving such a lovely comment!! : )

    2. Thankfully, for those who prefer reading paperbacks (and yes that includes me) my lovely publisher Secret Cravings will be releasing a print version of Empathy later in the year.

    3. WOO-HOOOOOO!!!!! YAY!!!!!!! Thanks so much for letting me know!!! I'll be watching for that!! : )


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