The Herd Archives

Friday, November 23, 2012

Golden Chariot (Dangerous Waters #1) by Chris Karlsen + giveaway


Myth, murder, and money clash in this gripping undersea adventure.

The rare discovery of a ship sunk during the time of the Trojan War has been found off the coast of Turkey, near Troy. Charlotte Dashiell is an American nautical archaeologist and thrilled to be part of the recovery team. The wreck may contain proof of her highly controversial theory about the Trojan War.

Charlotte is present when the Turkish government agent assigned to guard the site is murdered. Her possible involvement and a questionable connection to a private collector of black market relics bring her under suspicion. Atakan Vadim is the Turkish agent sent to investigate her. Unknown to either of them, the smuggler behind the murder plans to steal a valuable artifact and frame Charlotte for the theft...after they murder her.

Type: Suspense/Thriller, Romance
Publisher: Books to Go Now, ebook (96,700 words)
Heat: 2 out of 5
Rating: 4 out of 5

It's always fun to step outside of your normal reading and find something you really love. There were so many unique things about Golden Chariot from the setting of an archeological underwater dig site and an exotic locale to the utterly fascinating characters from different walks of life slowly forming a relationship against all odds. Add in a bit of danger, some real grit and the quest to prove a bit of mythology really happened and you've got a damn fine story that'll keep you entertained for hours. 



One of my biggest freak-me-the-hell-out things is the ocean and all of the things that have been lost to it over the centuries and holy crap Karlsen got me really damn good with some of the underwater scenes. The dangers from an unstable site, mother nature interfering and random underwater beastie encounters had my heart pounding and me backing away really damn quick from the book with a muttered 'oh shit. shit, shit, shit!"

The thing I found about Karlesn's writing is that it pulled me in completely and had me involved and invested in what was happening. I was just as excited about all of the archaeological discoveries as Charlotte and the rest of the team and found myself wanting her to find her proof of the mythological characters more and more as the book went on and wondering how the heck Karlsen was going to pull it off (she did a fabulous job in the end too). It was really fascinating to see how they went about uncovering all of the forgotten bits of history on the ocean floor and how they each reacted to all of the finds and what they signified.

Atakan and Charlotte's relationship was interesting. It's a very, very slow burning romance but I found I really liked that. I liked watching these two individuals that were somewhat at odds with each other slowly become friends. The sometimes snarky teasing you have with someone you've really bonded with and enjoy being around. The attraction building and finally, finally something coming of it. The scenes are a little innocent and lean towards the fade to black variety but there's still a little spice that sneaks in and that's perfectly suited to the couple.
Atakan turned his air drill off. "You want to switch back?" 
"No," she said. "I'm curious." 
He waited for her to explain. 
She grinned slow and wicked. "Do you have this music on a CD at home somewhere?" 
"Yes," Atakan said, his eyes narrowing. "Why?" 
"You ever put the deserty stuff on when you have a woman over and play sultan and harem girl?" 
His mouth dropped open and he appeared speechless. This is a first. 
"That's a most indecent thing for a woman to ask a man," he said, at last. "Is your brother not disturbed by your boldness?" 
"You don't know Nick," she said, laughing at the suggestion. "So, what's the answer?" 
"I will not dignify such an impertinent question with a response." 
"I'll take that as a yes." She'd bet there was a fiery blush beneath his tan. 
He handed back her iPod. "If I ever see your brother again, I shall speak to him about this," he said sternly as he replaced his artifact in the secured storage cabinet.
From the underwater explorations to the suspense surrounding the murders and a very sweet love story that'll sneak up on you Golden Chariot was really a wonderful experience. It did take me a little time to get used to the very unfamiliar names (both for people and locations) but it was so worth holding in there for a couple chapters and getting used to them. I'd love to see more from Karlsen and am really hoping this will turn into a series. I'd love get lost in the world she created for just a little longer.

Get Your Copy
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I was born and raised in Chicago. My father was a history professor and my mother was, and is, a voracious reader. I grew up with a love of history and books.

My parents also love traveling, a passion they passed onto me. I wanted to see the places I read about, see the land and monuments from the time periods that fascinated me. I’ve had the good fortune to travel extensively throughout Europe, the Near East, and North Africa.

I am a retired police detective. I spent twenty-five years in law enforcement with two different agencies. My desire to write came in my early teens. After I retired, I decided to pursue that dream.

I currently live in the Pacific Northwest with my husband, four rescue dogs and a rescue horse.

Find Chris online:  Website | Facebook | Pinterest



Chris Karlson is giving away a bunch of goodies!
Just leave some nice book love and enter the rafflecopter :)
Ends Dec. 26th.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Tour Schedule:
Nov. 6th- White Sky Project (Review/Giveaway)
Nov. 9th- The Book Diva's Reads (Review/Giveaway)
Nov. 11th- The eBook Reviewers (Review/Giveaway)
Nov. 12th- Mallory Heart Reviews (Review/Giveaway)
Nov. 13th- The Insane Writings of a Crazed Writer (Review/Interview/Giveaway)
Nov. 15th- TheFourHorsemenSeries (Review/Giveaway)
Nov. 17th- A Book Lover's Library (Review/Giveaway)
Nov. 18th- Beach Bum Reads (Review/Giveaway)
Nov. 19th- Close Encounters with the Night Kind (Review/Giveaway)
Nov. 23rd- Herding Cats & Burning Soup (Review/Giveaway)
Nov. 29th- I am, Indeed (Review/Giveaway)
Dec. 7th- Musings of a Writing Reader (Review/Giveaway)
Dec. 13th- Community Bookstop (Review/Giveaway)
Dec. 18th- Book- Marks The Spot (Review/Giveaway)
Dec. 19th- My Cozie Corner (Review/Giveaway) 


36 comments:

  1. Hi Anna,

    Thank you for taking the time to read and review Golden Chariot. I look forward to talking with your followers. I just finished a book board for Golden Chariot on my pinterest page readers might find interesting: www.pinterest.com/chriskarlsen/golden-chariot.

    I enjoyed putting it together. There's also a book trailer on my website.
    Chris Karlsen

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    1. Hi Chris! I'm so glad I was able to check out the book :) Any chance we'll be hearing from Charlotte's brother and his friend in the future? I'd love to hear both of their stories :)

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    2. I second this!! lol. Pretty please with a cherry on top? xD

      Ana♥

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  2. Great post. This sounds like a fun and interesting book.
    Thanks for the giveaway.
    kitcat76(at)hotmail(dot)com

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    1. Thanks Cathy! It really was a fascinating read :) Good luck with the giveaway!

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  3. Great review Anna :) ^_^ Yaay lol. I loved this book. The romance was a very slow build up but it was good :) What did you think of Charlottes brother and his friend? Ahhh. part of me wanted her to say yes to him bu then I really liked Atakan. I was sooo on the fence for a while. But Atakan grew on me as I continued to read ^_^

    beachbumreads(at)yeahoo(dot)com
    Ana♥

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    1. OMG I LOVED them Ana! I was really torn over the friend as well. Kinda broke my heart and made me do that girly awww bit. But I liked Atakan and their relationship so it definitely turned out how I wanted. But ooo I want to hear more from both of the guys. I'd really like to hear from Uma too. She really grew on me :)

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    2. Ahhh. Yes!! I was like aaww nooooo *sobbing* but then... Atakan.. I mean... it's Atakan.. He can take the cake... this round at least lol. But, I agree with you, I want to hear more from those two... Uma... ahh... maybe lol. It's just... the minute those guys were introduced, I was immediately hooked on them. It might be the whole SWAT thing too ;) hahaha. But, I mean.. he got her CHOCOLATE! I'm in love lol

      Ana♥

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  4. HI Cathy,
    Glad the book piques your interest. There's a book trailer on my website, which Anna has kindly shown a link for and I recently finished a book board for Golden Chariot on my pinterest page, also linked. Hope you'll check them out.
    Chris K.

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  5. HI Anna,

    I love the excerpt you chose. I had fun with Atakan because he can be so straight arrow and Charlotte is so American--candid and enjoys teasing him.

    There was a ton of research involved in the story. I am thrilled when readers appreciate the history behind the artifacts.

    I love Turkey. I knew the first time I went I'd set a story there. For the description of the ship, I used a picture in one of my research books. It was such a haunting and sad shot of this ancient wreck. I wanted to give Charlotte the feelings I had when I looked at the picture.

    Yes, this is book one of a series. The sequel, Byzantine Gold will be out late next month. It is set in Cyprus. Charlotte, Atakan, Refik, Talat and several other characters return.
    Chris K.

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    1. Oh.My.Word. Chris you just made me squeal. I'm so excited to hear it's going to be a series!!

      I had such a hard time picking out a quote but that scene just tickled me. There were so many between the two that I just loved.

      I've told my mom all about the book (she loves history and works at our natural history museum/has put together exhibits on ship wreckes, etc) and she's very excited about getting to read the book when she comes up to visit for the holidays :)

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  6. Hi Ana of Beach Bum Reads. Glad to talk with you again. Nick, Charlotte's brother is in the sequel out next month. As I mentioned to Anna, it's called Byzantine Gold. Nick won't appear in person but on page in conversations with Charlotte.

    As to Jeff, his friend--yes, that was kind of a tough scene to write because I really liked him too. But, I loved writing Atakan and fleshing him out. I knew from the start, she'd wind up with Atakan. I also felt for a lot of female readers that Charlotte's feelings for Jeff would hit home, that difference between loving someone and being in love with someone.
    Chris K.

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    1. Hehe.. Hi... I'm just stalking you around the blogosphere lol. Oh pooop! I <3 Nick. But, I'll take him any way I can get him lol.

      You're right. Charolotte's feelings for Jeff definitely hit home. Ahhh. *still sobbing here* I liked his attitude afterwards. But.. still, I just wanted to wrap him up in a hug and make all his woes go away lol. Definitely looking forward to Byzantine Gold :)

      Ana♥

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  7. Hi Anna,

    You might want to let your mom know that on my pinterest page are shots of INA, the Institute of Nautical Archaeology in Turkey. The wreck in Golden Chariot is loosely based on their discovery of the Uluburun, a Bronze Age ship sunk off the coast of Turkey.

    Much of the Uluburun has been reconstructed and is on display at the Castle of St. John, in Bodrum at their Underwater Museum.
    Chris K.

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  8. Hi Ana,

    Nick is another neat guy to write. Without spoiling:( I will tell you that he's in trouble with the police department in the new book but you will definitely approve of why he did what he did that got him into trouble.

    I still haven't decided what to do with him, if anything, in a third book. I like hearing the feedback on him. I am torn between a story focused on him or another strong character you see lots of in Byzantine Gold. I'd like to keep the books in Turkey or the Aegean/Med area so I'd have think of a way to bring Nick into the region for awhile. Hmmm.
    Chris

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  9. Thank you for taking the time to introduce us to this book.
    Sounds like a winner.

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    1. Hi Ellen,

      I hope you had a great Thanksgiving. The year seems to have flown by. I'm so happy at the interest in history and nautical archaeology and the Trojan War. This book was in my head for a year before I started the research which I worked on for 18 months prior to writing the first word.
      Have a fab weekend and good luck with the giveaway.
      Chris K.

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  10. Sounds like an interesting book!
    gokarter418 (at) aol (dot) com

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    1. Hi Caitlin,

      Thank you. I love hearing you're interested in the story. Have a wonderful weekend and good luck with the giveaway.
      Chris K.

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  11. The setting to this book sounds so fascinating, that alone makes me want to read it :). Thanks for sharing!

    --Alicia
    dmr8888 at yahoo dot com

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    1. Hi Alicia,

      I love Turkey. I knew the first time I visited I'd set a book there. Fascinating country and what a world of history there:)
      Chris K.

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  12. would love to win & read! PICK ME!!

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    1. Hi PM,

      I hope you're having a terrific weekend and holiday season. Thank you for joining in:)
      Chris K

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  13. Sounds like a great read.

    smurfettev AT gmail DOT com

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    1. Hi Sheri,
      Thank you for the compliment. The story was close to my heart (all my books are) but this one was a story that just kept building in my mind until it finally demanded to be put to paper;)
      Chris K

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  14. oooh! That sounds great, I can't wait to check it out.
    Congrats

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  15. "I will not dignify such an impertinent question with a response."

    "I'll take that as a yes." She'd bet there was a fiery blush beneath his tan.


    *giggles* Love it! The excerpt was great. Definitely looks like a good read :-)

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    1. LOL Penni- The two of them had me laughing a good bit over their little convos like this. Was such a good book. My mom's in town right now and reading it too!

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  16. I could not find a ''like'' on your page, but a friend request was sent. Love the picture on the cover. Looks mysterious and beautiful...
    lisakhutson at cox. net

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    1. Lisa this one's the one my momma read while she was here. She really liked it other than the "graphic sex" at the end. LOL. She's so a cozy mystery kinda girl but she enjoyed the story. I loved all of it myself ;)

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    2. Hi Anna, Penni, Nae, and Crazy Mama,

      Hope everyone had a good holiday. Sorry to come on late but I had some computer problems. I've been doing a final edit on the sequel to Golden Chariot and it's been a nightmare trying to find a fix. And my publisher wants the story up before the end of the month. Still don't know exactly what's wrong. Grr.

      I'm glad your mom liked the book. I should warn you to warn her that Byzantine Gold has more than one sex scene. I rate them PG-17 but I think your mom might think them "graphic" too.

      I really love the cover for this next book. There's lots of bright color.
      Chris K.

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    3. Well that definitely sounds good to me Chris!! I like a bit of steam in my books :) Much more than a kiss in a book is "too much" for my mom. LOL

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  17. Oh Anna! If your mom likes mysteries maybe she will like Bwitching Mysteries series by Madelyn Alt! It's a witch mystery series with sweet romance but very little sex type stuff. It mentions it but doesn't go into details. Plus a bonus my best friend's mother went to school with the author right here in Indiana! He is a link to her books :-) http://madmadly.blogspot.com/p/mad-for-bewitching-mysteries.html

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    1. Oh very neat. You know I just went into Goodreads to make a note and I already had book on on my tbr list! I think I added it because I was working on a 50 states challenge and looking for an Indiana read! I'll have to grab up a copy now for sure :)

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  18. Hello! I was another stop on this blog tour (Book- Marks the Spot on the 18th!) I am sort of just going through the other stops and letting them know, in case they did not already, that the second book, Byzantine Gold, is on tour at

    http://goddessfishpromotions.blogspot.com/2013/01/virtual-reviews-tour-byzantine-gold-by.html

    right now. I uh.. don't work with them. I do host for them occasionally and saw the book on there, but noticed there were not a lot of takes for the tour. I figured this was because the other hosts had not read the first book in the series. So.. I took it upon myself to spread the word to people who I know have read book one. (: sorry if this is annoying, but in your review, you said you wanted it to become a series, so I figured you would like to know!

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    1. Hey Ryan! Thanks so much for a heads up. I've never done a tour with them before so never would have seen that. Very cool of you to spread the word around :)

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I always enjoy hearing what YOU think so come on and leave a comment. Everyone's welcome :) And feel free to leave comments on old posts. I'll check in on you there too :)

Bloggers don't forget to leave your links!
~Anna