Friday, May 27, 2016

New Release in the Samantha Wolf Mysteries Series!

New Release!

Get book #5 in the Amazon, best selling Samantha Wolf Mysteries series!

The Haunting of Eagle Creek Middle School

(free with Kindle Unlimited)


Halloween is right around the corner, and the girls find themselves in the middle of a hauntingly good mystery. 
Sam, Ally, and Cassy help form a new club at their school in order to raise money for charities. Their first mission is to save a struggling program founded by a local widow, but the benefactor has some secrets. 
It turns out that Eagle Creek Middle school has some secrets too, including a tragic story passed down for fifty years. Does a tormented ghost really roam the basement of the school? 
While creating a haunted house to raise the needed donations, the young detectives uncover the shocking truth. One that will forever change the lives of people they have come to cherish. 

Twitter handle: @taraellisauthor

Each book can be read on their own, or you can start with book #1, The Mystery of Hollow Inn


“Stop trying to scare your sister.” Kathy Wolf points her fork at Hunter for emphasis, but the glop of mashed potatoes falling off the end of it causes smiles around the dinner table, instead of fear.
“But it’s true, Mom,” Hunter counters, his grin widening. He has the same dark eyes and hair of his father, but the short stature of his mom. Sam, on the other hand, is nearly as tall as he is already. Ethan Wolf constantly tries to convince his son that all of the Wolf men start to grow in their later teens, but Hunter believes he’s destined to be forever smaller than his friends. “Everyone knows that Eagle Creek Middle School is haunted. Right, John?” Nudging his best friend in the ribs, Hunter shovels more of his dad’s famous meatloaf into his mouth.
“Umm…sure,” John confirms, glancing briefly at a scowling Mrs. Wolf. His cheeks burning, he sets his own fork down, feeling a need to explain himself. At sixteen, he’s two years older than Hunter and has a greater sense of accountability than his friend.
“The story goes, that some fifty years ago, there was a horrible accident in the boiler room under the school.”
“Is that what they used for heat?” Ally asks, interrupting her brother.
“Yeah,” John confirms. “I think they converted the school to a regular furnace some time ago, but the boiler is still there, because it’s too expensive to remove it. Anyway,” he continues, looking around the table at his captive audience, “the janitor pretty much worked there his whole life. He knew what he was doing, but that night, something went terribly wrong and he died in the mishap. Ever since, on cold nights, you can hear the sounds of his ghost wandering the basement under the school, trying to fix the boiler.”
“Oh, please,” Sam laughs it off. “That’s not even all that impressive, as far as ghost stories go! But…” pausing with her glass of water halfway to her mouth, she slams it back down and spins towards Ally. “We should use that in the haunted house!” she shouts, bouncing in her chair. “Have John dress up in an old janitor suit, or something.”
“Uhhmm,” Ethan clears his throat loudly, while staring pointedly at his daughter. “Samantha, do you really think that would be in good taste?”
“Yeah, Samantha,” Hunter adds, not missing a chance to tease his sister. “Why would we want to waste our time running around in a stupid kid’s thing, anyway?”
“Because it’s for a good cause,” Ally argues. “And I agree with your dad,” she adds, turning back to Sam. “If someone really did die, I wouldn’t want to make light of it. There’s a ton of other things we can have them dress up as,” she quickly ads, seeing the defeated look on Sam’s face. “John would make a good Frankenstein!”

Author Bio:

Author Tara Ellis lives in a small, rural town in Washington State, set in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. She enjoys the quiet lifestyle with her husband, two teenage kids and several dogs. Tara was a firefighter/EMT, and worked in the medical field for many years, before committing herself to writing young adult and middle grade novels full-time. (she still dabbles in teaching CPR)

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Free Ebook!

The fourth book in The Samantha Wolf Mysteries is FREE until 5/17!!

Middle school presents a new kind of challenge for Sam and Ally, but also a chance to make a unique friend. When one of their teachers needs help, the three of them come together to lend her support.

Nestled in the woods that surround their homes is Covington Ranch. An abandoned estate once used to raise famous horses, a family tragedy has left it forgotten and neglected. But someone has come back.
What does their teacher, a rich stockbroker, and a stolen ruby called The Eye of Orion all have in common? Sam and Ally vow to find out, and in doing so, start a chain reaction. It could either have dire consequences for those involved, or bring a broken family back together again.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Remember to Breathe

I have a big weekend coming up. First, another Bookbub ad for one of my middle grade books, and at the same time, I'm putting the next one in the series up for pre-order. (It will be released on the 27th) Not to mention an out-of-town trip for my sons college conference track meet! (GO BRANDON!)

I've been going full-steam with a lot of things, and I need to stop and take a breath. I often do this by getting out into nature, so I went on a couple of solo hikes the past couple of weeks. Not only did I get some much needed exercise, but there is a renewal that takes place for me, deep in the woods. I'm blessed to live in a gorgeous area, where I can drive for an hour (or less) in any direction and have an incredible variety of settings. Ocean to the West, the Cascade Mountains (and volcanoes!) to the East. Seattle to the South (although I avoid it) and lakes and trails to the North.

I also like to call myself a photographer, but I haven't been keeping up on that hobby lately, and I think my blog reflects it. I can tell when I'm stressed, because I pull back from the things that relax me the most. Isn't that ironic?

So. My point, I guess, in sharing this is to remind you that while it's good to stay focused and moving forward with your goals, don't lose yourself in it. Remember to stop and decompress every once in a while!

To help encourage myself, I'm going to share some of my favorite serene settings. Places that I have either returned to multiple times due to their calming effect, or want to return to. I may or may not have shared these before!

This is by far my #1 spot. Flathead Lake, Montana in Blue Bay. It holds special meaning for me. I have come to this exact location since I was a child, for family reunions and camping trips. Hours spent in the sun with my grandma and grandpa(who is gone now). Mom, Dad, sister, cousins, and numerous aunts and uncles. This is Native American property, and it really does feel sacred. I know that might sound corny ... but I don't care! :)

Mount Baker National Park. This is one of the trails that runs along the shore of Baker Lake. Yes, this is really how it looks ... almost magical. There are a couple of spots, when you come around a bend and the silence hits you like a physical force. There were a few times when I just had to stop and literally sit down on the trail and just soak up all of that silence/stillness. It's SO good for the soul! The picture below is the view from one of the hike-in campgrounds, of Mount Baker at dusk. Can you picture yourself sitting there, just being still and amazed at the beauty surrounding you?

Mount Rainier National Park. The picture above is one I took at Reflection Lake (aptly named). You get there by taking The Road to Paradise. I'll admit, that while this is one my all-time favorite pictures, and the beauty and serenity of the place is undeniable, I don't know if I'll ever get back there again. The road absolutely terrified me. I don't do well with narrow, high, no guardrail roads! The image below, however, is of Silver Falls, also in the park. I have hiked the trail to it several times now, and it has turned into a summer tradition for my sister and I. We call it camp TarDuly (my sisters name is Dulcy). Corny? Yes, but there is nothing more relaxing than a family tradition filled with positive experiences and memories, in this magical setting!!

These last two picture are from my very own neighborhood. Yup! If I don't have time to go for a drive somewhere, all I have to do is step outside. I call the image above, 'silence'. It's at the end of my road (about a mile from my house), where the slough converges with the mighty skagit river. Just breathe that in. ;)  The picture below is also down the street from my house. The fields often flood in the winter, and the snow geese and trumpeter swans love it. I waited for a couple of weeks to catch this image of the setting sun, with the geese/swans on calm water. (it was usually raining!)

This is it for now. I know that I need to get back to producing some new images. It's been a while, and that isn't healthy for my soul. I hope that perhaps this might inspire you to look into some new areas around where YOU live, to start building those memories!!!

Monday, May 2, 2016

Descent, Into the Darkness

My designer, Mel at Melchelle Designs, has done it again! Look at this stunning cover she made for Descent! I always liked the old cover, but this one is really a winner. My daughter, Megan, is once again the gorgeous model.

Amazon Link


An ancient ruler returns to Earth, forcing those who remain to choose sides. Alex, prophesized to lead the resistance, is a reluctant pawn in a war without clear victors.

The Shiners are not only an enemy, but also an army of emotionless killers who wear the faces of loved ones. In this twisted landscape, it’s hard to know which side you should be fighting for.

Unsure of what she's become, Alex battles her own tormented emotions to find the truth. Can she rise above the darkness? Or will she ultimately descend into its cold embrace?

Available now on Amazon!


Rather than make a new post, I'll just add the new cover for Heritage on here. I couldn't be any happier with how ALL of these new covers turned out. And did I mention that my beautiful daughter
is the model??!!

Amazon link

AND,,,,, last, but certainly not least, the new cover for the box set!!