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Men of Devotion Ines Johnson Guest Post & Book Spotlight ~ The Loyal Steed

Ines Johnson coverThe Loyal Steed: a Pleasure Hound Novel

SYNOPSES

The Tagline

What starts as a series of carnal lessons turns into more as two rivals vie for the woman of their dreams.

 

Short Blurb

Trained as a Pleasure Hound and now surviving by selling his body to rich women, Jaspir’s heart has always remained loyal to Lady Merlyn. When Merlyn’s fiance, Liam, approaches Jaspir for help in ensuring her happiness in the bedroom, Jaspir agrees to train Liam in the pleasure arts. What starts as rivals in an uneasy truce, soon turns carnal when Merlyn learns of their secret lessons and iis torn between the attentions of two men who would do anything to rule her heart.

 

Full Blurb

Jaspir has been in love with Lady Merlyn since they were children, but she has always been out of his reach. Trained as a Pleasure Hound and now surviving by selling his body to rich women, his heart has always remained loyal to his true love.

Liam was promised to Merlyn in their youth, but he’s always known that he’s not the man in her heart. With their betrothal approaching, Liam seeks out Jaspir for help. Eager to ensure the happiness of the woman they both love, Jaspir agrees to train Liam in the pleasure arts.

What starts as rivals in an uneasy truce, soon turns carnal when Merlyn learns of their secret lessons. In a society where men are second class citizens, Merlyn is torn between the attentions of two men who would do anything to rule her heart.

Excerpts

Quantifiable Love

“Our time is up, Merlyn.”

“Should I buy more?”

Jaspir hesitated. He closed his eyes, resting his forehead against hers. She had his heart, but he would never be allowed to possess hers. He set her back on her chair.

“No,” he whispered. He lifted his head and looked into her eyes. “No,” he said more firmly.

Another hour, another day would change nothing. It had taken years to get over her. Who was he kidding? He’d never gotten over her. He never would.

“My time is up because you have another lover coming?” she asked.

Jaspir pulled away from her, staring into her golden brown eyes. “No. There is no one else.”

She cocked her head to the side, the birdlike motion signaling that she was investigating his words. Just as Merlyn only spoke facts, she had a knack for sensing when someone told half-truths.

“I have no other lovers coming today.” Something compelled him to go on, to assure her of her place in his heart. “You own my heart, Merlyn. I have loved you, and only you, every day since the first day I met you. I will continue to love you every day of my life.”

She searched his eyes, her head cocking the opposite way as she considered every angle of his new statement. “Why is it that I believe you? There is no possible way to prove your declaration. Love isn’t a tangible thing that you can point to. It isn’t measurable.”

Jaspir took her hand and placed it on his heart. “Do you feel that? What reason does a heart have for racing?”

“It’s a fight or flight response from the autonomic nervous system.”

“Do you think I’m preparing to flee due to fear of you? Or that I’m preparing to harm you?”

Merlyn shook her head.

“Look at me, Merlyn. What do you see?”

“I see that your pupils are dilated.” Her eyes dipped lower. “Your nostrils are flaring, and you are panting.”

“I can tell you that my stomach aches when I think of you. My palms sweat and I feel light headed. Not to mention what happens in my sex organs. That’s nearly every system of the human body engaged at the very thought of you.”

“These symptoms happen every time you think of me?”

“Without fail.”

“Fascinating,” she breathed, eyes bright.

Jaspir grinned at the curious creature before him. She pressed one hand to his heart. The other she ran over his forehead. Her fingers came away with beads of sweat. Her thumb returned and traced his lower eyelid.

“I’d like to study this phenomenon some more.” She looked into his eyes. Her own pupils were large, her nostrils flared, her breath came in small pants. “May I return to make more observations?”

Lesson One

Jaspir regarded his longtime foe. Set in Liam’s pale face was green eyes with thick lashes, a strong jaw and a mouth with a thin upper lip, but full lower lip. Jaspir had hated this pale face for many years. He blocked out Liam’s face and focused on the man’s lips. As he did with his more unattractive clients, Jaspir pictured Merlyn in his head, narrowing his world to what these lips would do for her.

Jaspir grazed his fingers along the lips before him. They were thinner than his own. His lessons would have to account for that. “Lesson number one,” he said. “The bedroom is the only place where a man can truly rule a woman.”

Jaspir clasped the chin that belonged to the lips, eliciting another gasp.

“You need to take charge,” he said. “Be in control.”

Jaspir’s fingers curled about the neck and the lips parted as he did so.

“Merlyn thinks too much. Her head rules her entire body. If you have control of her head…”

His fingers went into the red hairs at the nape of the neck that belonged to the lips. With a firm tug, the head went back exposing the neck. “…you have control of her.”

Jaspir let his focus extend from the lips to the exposed neck. His tongue struck out and he licked. He felt the body trembling in his grasp.

“Lesson number two, never do what’s expected.” Jaspir bit lightly at the chin. “Merlyn will anticipate your every move. She can’t help it. She remembers the sequence of things. If you are repetitive, you will lose her. Do you understand?”

Jaspir watched as the lips tried to form words, but the trembling thwarted them. In the end, Jaspir was given a nod of acquiescence.

“Good.”

Jaspir focused on the lips once more. He nipped at them. He nipped at the bottom lip, which was plumper than the top. He nipped at the corner, flicking his tongue out. He continued this random pattern as the lips tried to anticipate his next move, each time failing to predict it.

“Lesson three, make her chase you. Once you—”

The lips cut him off. The lips Jaspir had thought so small covered his own and tried to devour him. For unpracticed lips they were warm and wanton. Perhaps Liam could please Merlyn after all. But first, he had to pay attention.

Jaspir used the hand still at the nape of Liam’s neck to yank him away. Liam groaned at the loss, his chest panting, his eyes hooded.

“Are you listening, Liam?”

Liam blinked once, twice. By the third blink, he’d recovered himself and yanked away from Jaspir’s hold, embarrassment clear on his face. “All right,” Liam said. “You’ve made your point.”

“I don’t think I have.”

Liam clenched his jaw.

“Show me what you’ve learned.”

Liam’s eyes whipped to Jaspir’s. Jaspir placed his hands in his lap and waited.

Slowly Liam raised his hands. They grazed Jaspir’s chin. The soft, un-callused fingers reminding Jaspir of a woman’s gentle touch. Before Jaspir could process the softness, Liam’s fingers tangled in his hair and wrenched Jaspir’s head back.

Jaspir barely held back his moan of pleasure. He liked it rough from time to time, but that would not do for Lady Merlyn. “Not that firm. She’s more delicate than I am. Just enough to let her know that you’re in control.”

Liam loosened his grip a fraction. He looked to Jaspir for approval. Jaspir recognized the spark of need in the other male’s eyes. How this man lived ten years under Merlyn’s roof and never stole a single kiss was a true mystery to Jaspir.

“Good,” Jaspir nodded.

The spark in Liam’s eyes ignited into the smallest of flames before he dipped his head and put his mouth to Jaspir’s throat. Liam’s movements were unpracticed and hesitant, but the heat of his mouth sent a message to Jaspir’s dick. Jaspir focused on his breaths instead of the heat climbing across his hips.

There was no way he’d be turned on by this soft-hand, unpracticed, First, virgin.

Liam nibbled at Jaspir’s lip now, his hunger making up for his lack of skill. Jaspir knew desire. He understood wanting something that he thought was off limits to him. Jaspir softened and turned his head into the kiss.

For a moment, Jaspir allowed Liam to claim him. Allowed him to taste that thing that he could never possess. To pretend for just a moment that it could be this way; that they could be together always. That they could live on a land away from society and everything tearing them apart. To live in a small cottage surrounded by impossible flowers of red, purple and green.

The kiss turned brutal as both men fought to stake their claim. Until finally, Jaspir gave a tug of Liam’s hair, pulling them apart. Both men stared at the other, panting, eyes clear, realization dawning that neither held the object of their desire.

“That’ll be all for today’s lessons.”

It took a moment, but finally Liam rose. “When do I—” He stopped and cleared his throat.

“When do I come back for our second appointment?”

Jaspir turned to him, his face a mask of unconcern. “Pick any day you’d like. I’ve cleared my entire schedule just for you.”

 

The Author

Author Byline

Author of erotica, paranormal, and fairytale romance novels, Ines Johnson writes books for strong women who suck at love.

Author Bio

Ines writes books for strong women who suck at love. If you rocked out to the twisted triangle of Jem, Jericha, and Rio as a girl; if you were slayed by vampires with souls alongside Buffy; if you need your scandalous fix from Olivia Pope each week, then you’ll love her books!

Aside from being a writer, professional reader, and teacher, Ines is a very bad Buddhist. She sits in sangha each week, and while others are meditating and getting their zen on, she’s contemplating how to use the teachings to strengthen her plots and character motivations.

Ines lives outside Washington, DC with her two little sidekicks who are growing up way too fast.

Author Photo

Ines Johnson photo Guest Posts

Men of Devotion

If you read my books, you may have noticed a theme. Between the covers of many of my stories you’ll find a man of the cloth, who struggles with his feelings for a woman, and ultimately succumbs to the glories of romantic love.

 

An Old Testament

My fascination with priests began with the television movie, The Thornbirds. Richard Chamberlain in robes -nuff said. Its not just priests I’m fascinated with. It was an illuminating experience for me watching the Jedi of Star Wars. I even found Yoda hot! And then there was that string of movies about fallen angels where Christopher Walken was a badass angel and Elias Koteas was a former priest. Yummy. But the priest to end all priests? Matthew McConaughey in Contact!

 

Why am I attracted to priests, monks, angels, and even cone-headed, Buddha-like aliens? Because these men of devotion have a lot of qualities that women look for in their partners. They’re disciplined, full of grace, devoted, and they understand sacrifice.

 

A Beautiful Mind

Spiritual men are smart. Monks spend their lives studying ancient texts. Priests have to get a degree from college or seminary school, which can take anywhere from four to eight years. Jedi are taken as children, younglings, into the order. Other than Luke Skywalker, we know they spend all of their formative years training in the mental and physical art of the force.

 

Hopelessly Devoted

Speaking of Skywalkers, Padme didn’t fall for cute and cuddly Anakin. No, she fell for the grown Jedi who began to tug at the rules of his order as he pursued her affections. We all like a rebel, a bad boy, to some degree. The man of cloth might not be the bad boy, but their situation is definitely a naughty and forbidden one. He’s pledged his loyalty and devotion to another: namely god, a goddess, or some higher power.

 

The Sexy Priest trope is the perfect love triangle. You have the sexy priest, the first leg of the triangle. The priest is devoted to his vows, the second leg of the triangle. And then in walks another set of legs, the heroine. Admit it: we all want to be the chosen one in a love triangle. And if you can emerge the victor over a god-figure…

 

I already recognize that I’m going to hell. But that’s okay, because that’s where all of the sexy, fallen priests will be!

 

Complication Cards

PART ONE: THE HOLE CHARACTER

All characters have holes (notice it rhymes with goal). You open the first chapter and find a human being who believes they are lacking something crucial in their lives. Perhaps it’s the dream job, or the right social circle, or their mother’s approval, or maybe its love.

 

Rarely do you enter the world of a character who finds themselves whole. A part is usually missing. For the next tens of thousands of words you will embark upon a journey with that character to fill that void.

 

Characters fill these holes in one of two ways; with either a want or need.

 

Remember when you were young and you wanted the fancy pair of jeans? Think Brenda in 90210. Fresh from the Midwest, thrown into the dangerous waters of the Beverly Hills elite, and her working class parents couldn’t afford the patchwork, ripped jeans that cost the same as a car payment. But Brenda wanted those holey jeans so that she could fit in with Kelly and Donna. In Carol’s, her mother’s eyes, there was a need for a new pair of pants for Brenda to wear to school and that’s what Brenda got. Now if we watched that 20-year old episode we know what Brenda did to those new pair of jeans and she made holes in her jeans to fill her social void.

 

You might want a pair of Louis Vuitton, but in the end you need a pair of functioning heels to go with that cute dress.

 

A want is a false goal, a red herring that throws both the reader and the character off the true course that will fill the character’s hole. It takes some time and some bumps in the road before the character realizes their want is not likely what they need. The need perfectly fills the void the character has been experiencing.

 

Exercise

Take a look at your main character(s). What is it that they need in order to be whole again? Now consider if it would serve your story for your character to have a false goal that keeps them from seeing their true need for a good portion of the story?

Next week, you’ll learn the four types of obstacles that a character might face during their course of their quest for their ‘need.’

 

PART TWO: THE OBSTACLE COURSE

Last week we learned that characters have holes that only ‘needs’ can fill. Before a character can see their need, they have to yearn after a want, which takes them on a bumpy ride to nowhere.

 

This obstacle course consists of four physical and/or internal complications that force the hero or heroine to make decisions that produce dramatic action.

The four kinds of obstacles are:

 

The Antagonist (Bad Guy)

A specific antagonist lends clarity and power to the dramatic structure because his primary function is to oppose the protagonist. He doesn’t necessarily have to be evil, but he should personify the protagonist’s obstacles.

Example: Cinderella’s Wicked Step Mother

 

Physical Obstructions

Physical obstructions are just what they seem –material barriers standing in the way of the protagonist. These can be rivers, deserts, mountains, a dead-end street, or a car causing a crash –anything that presents a substantial obstacle for the protagonist.

Example: Arielle’s fin

 

Inner/Psychological Problems

Inner obstacles are intellectual, emotional, or psychological problems the protagonist must overcome before being able to achieve his goal. For example, dealing with fear, pride, jealousy, or the need to mature fall into this category.

Example: Fiona’s (from Shrek) appearance

 

Mystic Forces

Mystic forces enter most stories as accidents or chance but they can be expressed as moral choices or ethical codes, which present obstacles. They can also be personified as gods or supernatural forces, which the characters have to content with.

Example: Tiana’s (from The Frog Prince) magical transformation into a frog

 

Exercise

Which of these obstacles will your character face? Will they face more than one type of obstacle during the course of the story?

 

Next week, we’ll put it all together -the character, need, and obstacle- into a scene card.

 

PART THREE: THE SCENE

You’ve discovered your character’s need, and potential their want, which is a false goal. You’ve learned about the four types of obstacles that can obstruct your character on the way to achieving their goals and filling their need. Now, to build a heart-pounding story where you send your character through the toughest obstacle course you can imagine, you should map out a blueprint for the course.

 

4 Elements of a Story

  1. HERO/HEROINE

Primary character looking to fill the void in their life.

  1. WANT

A false goal that the hero/heroine initially believes is their path to wholeness.

  1. OBSTACLE

One of the four obstacles opposing the hero/heroine.

  1. NEED

The true goal of the hero/heroine which will satisfy their void.

 

OBSTACLE COURSE CARD

 

EXAMPLES

Antagonist example

In the Cinderella adaptation Ever After, Danielle (heroine) works tirelessly to gain acceptance (want) from her stepmother (antagonist) until she realizes her family of friends, including the Prince, love her unconditionally (need).

 

Physical example

In The Little Mermaid adaptation Splash, yes I went there!, Madison (heroine) leaves the sea to be with Allen (want) but when her legs get wet and her fins come back (obstacle) she’s forced to tell Allen the truth of her existence in the hopes that he’ll come and spend forever with her under the sea (need).

 

Inner/Psychological example

In the unconventional fairy tale Shrek, Princess Fiona (heroine) hopes to be rescued by a knight in shining armor (want) who will break her curse (obstacle) until she realizes that true love is “color” blind (need).

 

Mystic Forces example

In The Frog Prince, Tiana (heroine) dreams of opening a restaurant (want) but her dream takes a slight detour when she’s turned into a frog (obstacle) along with Prince Naveen and learns to seek and take help from others (need).

 

Exercise

Now its your turn. Fill out your own obstacle card for you story. If you want to take it a step farther, fill out a card for each scene!

 

 

 

Random Responses to Interview Questions

 

Inspiration Short

Over the summer, I had a flash of inspiration while on my knees cleaning the oven. I dreamed a world where men were the domestics and lived only to please women. For some curious reason, the idea stuck with me and three weeks later I’d written a full novel set in that fantasy world.

 

Inspiration Long

Last year, I was given an ARC of Kele Moon’s paranormal, menage romance, “The Queen’s Consorts.” I’d never read a polyamorous story before, where not only did the men fall for the heroine, but they fell for eachother as well. I craved more of this world, but couldn’t find anything to satisfy my needs. So I wrote my own.

 

“The Pleasure Hound series” is set in a dystopian future where women rule, men are second class citizens, and love is polyamourous. The book follows the lives of a group of monks who have trained in the orgasmic arts, but have since left their temple in the pursuit of their true passions.

 

Tell us about your book? How did it get started?

The elements of a great romance is when the hero and heroine fit each others need.

 

There’s a preponderance of books where pain is pleasure. And that’s okay with me -when I believe that there’s actually pleasure being had. I’ve read too many books where women are getting spanked just to get spanked. Its not clear how the act satisfies a need in them, nor is it clear that the man understands and is acting to fulfill that need. That understanding is the sexy part to me: a woman who knows (perhaps subconsciously) what she needs and a man who knows exactly how to give it to her.

 

The Pleasure Hound series, came into being out of this frustration. I wanted to read about a heroine who was eager to explore pleasure. I wanted to encounter a hero who was skilled in, and solely interested in, that woman’s pleasure. My monks have studied women’s bodies like textbooks. After thorough perusal of the women in their charge, they emerge ready to ace the examination.

 

What got you started in writing?

I come from a family of storytellers. My mother would talk your ears off for hours and my father is a songwriter. I began my storytelling career in television, where I still dabble from time to time. A few years ago I’d written a script that I thought would make an excellent book, only I didn’t know how to write a book. So I took a couple of classes and started querying. I never received a single rejection letter. Instead, I got no responses at all in the beginning! But I never gave up and I never stopped writing. Wait, isn’t the the definition of insanity?

 

How do you get your ideas for writing?

I’m a very bad Buddhist. I sit each week in sangha, which is similar to sitting in a church pew on Sunday. In a sangha the teacher, think preacher, will  lecture on spiritual teachings and guide the group in mediation. During meditation when I’m supposed to be getting my zen on, my mind always wanders back to the teaching and turns it into a story.

 

What do you like to read?

Perfect heroines are boring and unrealistic to me; they must be flawed in some way. I prefer stories where the heroine’s a strong, bright, and successful in their careers but are clueless and inept in their love lives.

 

What would your advice to be for authors or aspiring in regards to writing?

If you’re serious, you’re only allowed one day off a week. And on your day off you should be plotting in your head.

 

How long did you write before you were published?

I went to school for producing and screenwriting, and worked in the broadcasting industry for over a decade, before trying my hand at novel writing. I wrote my first novel in 2009. It was based off a script that I wrote but couldn’t find the financing for. I was so proud of my work, but readers and critique partners noted that it was evident that I was a screenwriter and didn’t understand the mechanics of novelization. Screenwriting consists of action and dialogue. That’s it. In scripts, there is no internal monologuing and setting is minimal. I had some learning to do. Five years, and a ton of classes later, I’m finally making my debut with a novel lush in setting and internal angst.

 

Are you a plotter or pantser?

I love plotting. Its my favorite part of writing. I love to go into Scrivener and use the Outline tool to plan the journey of my characters. I can recite just about any plotting structure you can think of. The Hero’s Journey, Save the Cat, Romance Arc, Relationship Arc…I could go on.

 

Generally, how long does it take you to write a book?

The first time I tried to write a book it took me one year to write the first three chapters because I agonized over each word choice. Now, I believe in fast drafting. Vomit the story onto the page without a care for comma placement. All told, it takes me about six months from the first drafted word to the final polished manuscript.

 

I take three to four weeks for the first draft, which I call The Dirty. I let The Dirty breath for as long as I am able to be parted with it -usually a week or two. Then I come back and Sweep up the grammar and plot holes, which usually takes another three to four weeks.

 

Next I send The Swept draft out to my trusted critique partners. When it comes back I Clean it up for another three weeks focusing on my weaknesses which is setting. Finally, I send The Clean manuscript off to the copyeditor for two to three weeks. When it comes back I Polish up all the commas and rethink my overused words. Then I hit publish, and start all over again!

 

What genres do you write besides romantic erotica?

I write romantic erotica, paranormal romance, and fairy tale retelling romance novels. Notice the romance in each genre. I began writing YA, but realized my love scenes were too hot for teens!

 

What is the most you have written in one day?

The most I’ve written in one day is 4551 words. How do I know that? Because I keep a log. I record what plot point I was writing, where I wrote, what time I started writing, how long I wrote, and my word count.

 

I typically Fast Draft with a friend; a competitive friend. I recommend writing along with competitive people. It forces you to get the words out. I also believe in incentives and I give myself stickers when I meet my word count -a trick I learned stalking Laini Taylor’s blog.

What are you currently reading?

I just finished reading a nonfiction book called “Sperm Wars: The Science of Sex” by Robin Baker. The title reveals the subject matter. Its about what goes on inside a fertile woman’s body. Did you know that less than 1% of sperm is designed for fertilization of the egg? There are Terminator sperm that engage in warfare with enemy sperm from the Part-Time Lover. Its fascinating! It was research for my current The Loyal Steed.

 

How did you come up with your title?

I was up one night watching HBO’s after dark programing. On show called “Cathouse,” one of the ‘working girls’ captivated me. She looked like a kindergarten teacher, not anything like what I’d imagine a hooker to look like. She said that she was a “pleasure hound,” and she could sniff out pleasure wherever it might be. The phrase stuck in my head for years.

 

Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?

I’m obsessed with Ernessa T. Carter. Her book “32 Candles,” is an 80’s fairytale retelling for women of color.

 

What are your current projects?

There are so many stories in my head begging to get out. I just finished writing an alien erotic romance. Its called Spirited Away. It was written on a dare -of sorts. I was joking around with my critique partner about the subject matter in erotic fiction on Amazon. KDP has provided a space for creatives to write stories beyond my scope of imagination like dinosaur erotica, troll romance, and tentacle monster sex. Then, I said, “I bet I could tell a tentacular tale with a plot and a point.” My critique partner didn’t take me seriously. So I wrote it. It’ll be out this summer.

 

Where do you write?

I do my best writing at hightop tables where I can alternately sit or stand while typing on my laptop. A cup is a must. My favorite is soy chai, sweetened with honey.

 

When do you write?

I write best in the morning from 8am until lunchtime. Nights are reserved for reading.

 

Links

Amazon Purchase Link

Part One: http://www.amazon.com/Loyal-Steed-Part-Pleasure-Hound-ebook/dp/B00WKAKSP0/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1429808418&sr=8-1&keywords=loyal+steed

 

Part Two:

http://www.amazon.com/Loyal-Steed-Part-Pleasure-Hound-ebook/dp/B00WKBZ8N6/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1429814624&sr=8-3&keywords=loyal+steed

 

Part Three:

http://www.amazon.com/Loyal-Steed-Three-Pleasure-Hound-ebook/dp/B00WKDY3KS/ref=sr_1_9?ie=UTF8&qid=1429814624&sr=8-9&keywords=loyal+steed

 

Complete Serial

http://www.amazon.com/Loyal-Steed-Complete-Serial-Pleasure-ebook/dp/B00WKE2160/ref=sr_1_10?ie=UTF8&qid=1429814624&sr=8-10&keywords=loyal+steed

Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/ineswrites

Twitter

https://twitter.com/ineswrites

Website

https://inesjohnson.wordpress.com/

Publisher

http://heartspell.com/

AISN

B00WKASP0

 

Tags

science fiction romance, romantic erotica, multicultural romance, interracial romance, menage, dystopian, LGBT, bisexual, coming of age

Eban- The Heckmasters- Book 2 – Allison Merritt

Eban (The Heckmasters, Book 2)
Samhain Publishing
Published: April 7, 2015
ISBN: 9781619226340
Categories: Romance, Paranormal & Alternate Worlds, Paranormal

Eban300

Blurb:
If love can’t save them, there will be hell to pay.

Grateful for his mother’s human blood that cools the dark fire of his demon father, Eban Heckmaster has set up a medical practice in New Mexico territory. But there’s no hope of living a normal life until he rids himself of a seductive demon that’s been pursuing him.

Vanquishing it won’t be as simple as sharpening his demon-hunting sword. The clever creature is hiding inside his best friend’s head, and she has no idea of the havoc she’s been wreaking, especially with his body.

Beryl suspects Eban knows why she’s been waking up with no memory of where she’s been or what she’s done, but he’s not talking. But when she inevitably learns what he’s hiding—or rather, what’s hiding inside her—she wonders if her love for him is real, or an illusion created by the demon’s lust.

Eban is losing the battle to hold his rising desire in check. There may be only one way to extricate Beryl from the beast entangling her mind. Call upon his demon blood…and offer it as a sacrifice.

Product Warnings
Contains a half-human, half-demon doctor who can heal anyone except himself, and a woman who’d blush if she could remember the sensuous torture she’s been inflicting on him. Could make you wonder if you should start listening to the voices in your head…

Excerpt:
Eban Heckmaster dreamed of becoming tangled in a river of gold. Soft and silky upon entering, it turned deadly within moments. He couldn’t breathe as it filled his nose. It bound his wrists, his ankles, blocked his vision. So much and so warm, sweat broke out across his body.

He’d die cradled in a gilded nest.

And he was fine with that.

Anything was better than living with the knowledge that his brother had taken the woman Eban loved as his bride hours ago.

Eban’s lungs ached for breath and his eyes shot open. Startled by weight settling on his abdomen, he tried to sit up, but two small hands held him down. Thanks to his demon blood, it only took a moment to adjust to the dark. In the nonexistent light, he peered up at Beryl Brookshier’s angelic face. She gave him a wicked smile as long strands of wheat-blonde hair tickled his bare chest. He sucked in a breath when he realized she was naked and a sheet was the only thing separating her from his raging erection.

“What are you doing?”

The second the words were out of his mouth, Eban knew he wasn’t talking to Beryl.

“Ravish me, Ebaneezer.”

The demon used Beryl’s voice and body, but the thing talking to him was far from human. The notion of taking its head off and sparing himself a lot of trouble was tempting. If not for the real Beryl’s trusting green eyes and bashful smile.

“That stopped being funny the first time you got naked in front of me.”

She caressed his cheek. “You were dreaming. I was trying to make your dreams more pleasant.”

He slapped her hands away. “You thought you’d tempt me into bedding you and then letting some other parasite into my brain. That’s not going to happen, Rosemar.”

“You want this body. Why deny it, Heckmaster?” The lust demon glowered at him, her irritation creasing the smooth face she borrowed.

“Get off me.” He pushed her away, then grabbed the sheet as she slid off his chest. “What I want is for you to vacate it, leaving Beryl’s mind intact so I can get out of Berner.”

Her pique faded, replaced by a sultry smile. “We’ve lain awake at night imagining the coupling. This body twined around yours, the friction of skin on skin. Hard muscles meeting soft curves. Lips touching…lips.” Her green eyes brightened mischievously. “Miss Brookshier has quite an imagination.”

He tensed, flushing at her descriptions, but revulsion held his desire at bay. “She’s there with you, right now?”

Rosemar waved a hand. “She’s locked away, but she’s not as innocent as you seem to think. This body is familiar with masculine touch.”

Eban suppressed a groan. “It’s none of my business. Nothing I’m interested in exploring.”

“Your body suggests otherwise. A simple sexual escapade isn’t a lifetime commitment.” She twisted a strand of hair around her finger, pouting while she batted her eyelashes.

“It is where demons are concerned. You can’t stay in there forever, you know.” He sat against the headboard, trying to ignore the way she pressed her breasts forward.

“Can’t I?” The wicked grin returned. “You can’t get rid of me without killing her. You know that.”

“We’ll see.”

Anger sparked in Rosemar’s eyes, sharper and meaner than human emotion. “I don’t know why you care. She doesn’t mean anything to you.”

Pain stabbed Eban’s chest. He turned his face away, trying not to think about Rhia’s hazel eyes, her soft Virginia accent, or the way she laughed when he said something funny. Beryl was an attractive woman now that she was beginning to gain weight after her long illness, but she wasn’t the one he loved.

“You’re wasting time thinking about her.” Rosemar sounded bored.

“I’m not going to let you kill an innocent woman by wearing her body down to nothing.” He glowered, but nothing seemed to frighten Rosemar. Even Wystan, who’d beheaded his share of parasite demons, had no effect on this one.

“I was talking about Rhia.” She put a warm hand on Eban’s shoulder. “Seere orchestrated their meeting so the three of you could defeat Noem. Without Rhia and Wystan, there is no Berner. There’s no Heckmasters. No future.”

Eban shrugged her hand off. He closed his eyes, sifting through memories of the battle with Noem and his legion of lesser demons. Years ago, Eban had tried to make a normal life for himself in another city while getting his doctor’s degree, but his younger brother Tell had called him back to treat a vicious wound Wystan had obtained at Noem’s hand. Tell and a weather deity had run Noem out of town that time. Eban had stayed, putting his dreams away. They’d been guarding a sealed portal to Hell for as long as he could remember, but Astaroth, the reigning prince, constantly sent his minions through gaps in the seals, offering them great rewards for bringing the Heckmasters back. Their father’s redemption had doomed the three of them to remain in this cursed town forever, fighting monsters until they died.

Then when it seemed like Rhia Duke would give Eban the chance to escape, she went and fell in love with his boneheaded brother. Worse than that, she’d unwittingly allowed Noem to drive her right into Berner, where he planned to capture her and give her to Astaroth. In the fight, Wystan had been gored by a minotaur, but he’d used his demon blood to overcome death and save the day—with Seere’s help, because the normally neutral Gray Side couldn’t keep their noses out of Heckmaster business.

Rosemar claimed she was inhabiting Beryl’s body at Seere’s command, and she’d proven herself useful in a fight, but none of the Heckmasters trusted her. It was clear that no matter what her orders, she had her own motives for choosing Beryl as a host.

Angry when he should be grateful—he didn’t really want Wys dead—Eban balled the sheet in his fists. “I doubt Wystan and Rhia would be too happy to know Seere thinks he’s God now.”

Rosemar chuckled. “We all aspire to godliness, don’t we? You by playing doctor, me by manipulating feelings. That’s what makes us so perfect for each other.”

She ran her finger over her lips and rose, swaying her hips in an exaggerated manner as she left. Eban swallowed hard.

He’d always known demons would be the death of him, but he’d never imagined it would be at the hands of one who looked like Beryl.

Buy links:
Samhain – https://www.samhainpublishing.com/book/5394/eban
Amazon – http://amzn.com/B00QZVS0I2
B & N – http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/wystan-allison-merritt/1119847207?ean=9781619222892
Are – https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-eban-1724448-140.html
Google Books – https://play.google.com/store/books/details?id=CL3VBQAAQBAJ&rdid=book-CL3VBQAAQBAJ&rdot=1&source=gbs_atb&pcampaignid=books_booksearch_atb
Kobo – https://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/eban

author photo(2)

About the author:
A love of reading inspired Allison Merritt to pursue her dream of becoming an author who writes historical, paranormal and fantasy romances, often combining the sub-genres. She lives in a small town in the Ozark Mountains with her husband and dogs. When she’s not writing or reading, she hikes in national parks and conservation areas.

Allison graduated from College of the Ozarks in Point Lookout, Missouri with a B.A. in mass communications that’s gathering dust after it was determined that she’s better at writing fluff than hard news.

Social links:
Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/authorallisonmerritt
Twitter – http://twitter.com/#!/Allison_Merritt
Blog – http://havenovelwilledit.blogspot.com
Pinterest – http://www.pinterest.com/allisonmwrites/
Goodreads – http://www.goodreads.com/allisonmwrites
Rafflecopter giveaway:
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You may or may not be aware that The Heckmasters series got its name from a mall kiosk selling tombstones. I thought a guy bearing the surname Heckmaster had to be pretty badass. I pretty much planned a trilogy right from the start and my jumping off point was Wystan Heckmaster, the eldest brother. He’s what would explode into the world if John Wayne and Dean Winchester had a baby. That left me with what the other two Heckmasters boys would be like. Almost from the beginning, I knew Wystan was the rugged one, and Tell the smartass of the bunch, so where did that leave Eban? He couldn’t be a bad mimic of one of the others, that’s just not fair for him or the readers.

It worked out that Eban would be the one who wanted something more from life than being a demon slayer. Instead of another gung-ho brother ready to kill monsters, he’d rather use his talents for healing, whether it’s one of the reformed demons who live in Berner or a stray human who wanders in. Eban is the only brother who actually fled Berner in search of a better life, but he was called back because of some trouble Wystan got into and he’s been stuck in town ever since.

While on the outside, Eban’s a kind, caring almost-doctor, he still has the kind of steel in his spine that makes evil tremble. And when someone he loves is threatened, he wields a saber with a silver blade to cut down anyone or anything stupid enough to harm his friends and family. Here’s a look at the weapon he both cherishes and loathes.

The weapon hung from a hook inside his wardrobe. He crossed to it, took the sheath off the hook, then wrapped it around his waist. The silver blade was lighter than it looked and twice as deadly. He’d used it in the battle against Noem, and before that to behead a questing beast Astaroth had sent to devour the Heckmasters. In the last four months, it had tasted an ocean of demon blood. Noem had snapped it like dry tinder during the battle for Berner. He owed yet another favor to Seere for having it reforged by a demon craftsman in the bowels of Hell. The shining blade looked and felt stronger than ever.

Try as he might to maintain a normal life, Eban has to carry the saber in order to stand up for good and wipe out evil, even when it means going against his caretaker nature. As tough as Wystan is and as goofy and complex as Tell is, Eban’s journey through his book is a dark tale that makes him

What do Pirates, Princes and Propaganda have in common? A guest post by M S Spencer

What do pirates, princes, Puritans, and propaganda have in common? Lacey Delahaye, forager and jelly maker, finds out in this romantic suspense set in the western Caribbean.

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Paraiso, the island in Whirlwind Romance, is based on a real island in the western Caribbean that I discovered—how else?—mucking around on the internet. Called Providencia, it forms an archipelago with two other islands, San Andres and Santa Catalina, and five uninhabited atolls. Currently under the Colombian flag, it has been the ruled by an incredible variety of groups, from Henry Morgan the notorious buccaneer, to Spanish Conquistadors, Dutch traders, even English Puritans. Now part of the UN’s Seaflower Biosphere, it sports the third largest coral reef in the world. To reach it isn’t easy, which is why it’s not well known in tourist circles.
Its rich and odd history made it an intriguing backdrop for my story, but please be aware that most of the cultural and geographic description of Paraiso in Whirlwind Romance, not to mention the characters, is purely fictional.

mangrove swamp like one where Lacey finds Armand

Whirlwind Romance
Secret Cravings Publishing, 9/2/2014
89,000 words; M/F; 3 flames; Adventure/Romance

Blurb:
In the aftermath of a hurricane, Lacey Delahaye finds herself marooned on an island off the Florida coast with a mysterious man. Before he can confess his identity, they are kidnapped and taken to a tiny island in the western Caribbean. In a story laced with adventure and romance, Lacey encounters pirates, power-mad ideologues, and palace intrigue, not to mention the advances of three men, only one of whom she loves.

Excerpt (R) : First Mating
She looked at the water and then up at the sky, now pitch black. Heavy rain clouds obscured the stars. I sure as hell don’t want my last pair of shorts to get wet with no way to dry them. She shimmied off her shorts and pulled her tee shirt over her head and tossed them under the kayak. As if on cue, the moon broke through and bounced off the water, illuminating both the yard and Lacey’s body, clad only in panties. She heard a gasp, and hastily sank under the water. Poor guy, I shouldn’t have subjected him to a nearly forty-year-old physique. She held out her arms. “Sorry about exposing myself, but we’ve no electricity and I don’t want my one clean shirt to get soaked. Now come on. I’ll hold you.”
He raised his eyes from her breasts and nodded. With the moonlight full upon him, she saw that he sported a rough, dark beard and shaggy hair. Homeless? Or grooming for a movie role? He was younger than she’d thought at first. His dark eyes glittered in the pale light.
“If you’re ready…” He slid down the ramp into her waiting arms. She bent down and pulled the torn jeans off, then unbuttoned the remnants of his shirt. He clung to her, his body trembling. She tried to ignore the stench rising from him, but as she worked, somewhere down below her bellybutton parts of her kindled and something that wasn’t bay water oozed out of her. It had been five years after all—five, long, desolate years since she’d been with a man. She’d accepted the possibility that she might never have sex again. Haven’t thought about it in weeks. Now the steady throbbing of a hard penis on her thigh unexpectedly liberated buried desire and she butted against him.
He fell over in the water and came up spluttering. “What did you do that for?”
Good question. Hand to mouth, Lacey backed away. Her foot landed on a crab, which did not take kindly to the assault and chomped down hard on her instep. Yowling, she lunged forward, landing in the stranger’s arms again. This time he took advantage and crushed her to him. One hand pulled down her panties. She didn’t argue, but spread her thighs so his cock could slide into her vagina. The water and mud made entering her all the easier, and they clung to each other, swaying back and forth. He must have found a purchase on the ramp for his thrusts grew stronger. Lacey reveled in the power of the man. She loved that he took control, that she could simply acquiesce and enjoy. The orgasm floated up from the depths and roared out of her mouth. “I’m coming! I’m coming!” He redoubled his pistoning and as she began to shudder, he gave one last shove and sighed. She felt warm liquid mix with the cold bay water in her vagina. The man didn’t speak, but, keeping his penis inside her, bent to kiss her lips.
Lacey let the water ripple around her, washing off the mud and the smell. After a minute, the man released her and ducked under the water. He came up shaking his head. A passing cloud veiled the moon and all she could make out were two brilliant eyes, streaks of starlight flashing in them. He whispered, “I’m so sorry.”
The words smacked into her like her father’s belt did that day he caught her smoking in the alley. Oh. My. God. What have I done? How wanton could I be? And how stupid? This guy could be a rapist, an escaped convict—or worse, married! Here she was, acting like some Hollywood harlot screwing in an airplane lavatory. Yeah, it felt wonderful. But…oh, dear. What to say? “Never mind?” How about, “I do this with all shipwrecked sailors?” “Do it to me one more time?” Instead, she slogged up the bank and turned. “You coming?”
***
Buy Links:
Secret Cravings:
http://store.secretcravingspublishing.com/index.php?main_page=book_info&cPath=4&products_id=934
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Whirlwind-Romance-M-S-Spencer-ebook/dp/B00N105I4E/
Barnes and Noble:
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/whirlwind-romance-ms-spencer/1120206448
ARe: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-whirlwindromance-1605591-153.html
Bookstrand: http://www.bookstrand.com/whirlwind-romance
Smashwords:
Overdrive: https://www.overdrive.com/media/1966211/whirlwind-romance
Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/whirlwind-romance-1
Scribd: https://www.scribd.com/book/237687502/Whirlwind-Romance
Inktera: http://www.inktera.com/store/title/06624dd5-bd56-4cab-b08c-5aa1c158ee4a
Versent: http://www.versentbooks.com/store/title/06624dd5-bd56-4cab-b08c-5aa1c158ee4a

MSE New Year's 2004About the Author
Although she has lived or traveled in every continent except Antarctica and Australia (bucket list), M. S. Spencer has spent the last thirty years mostly in Washington, D.C. as a librarian, Congressional staff assistant, speechwriter, editor, birdwatcher, kayaker, policy wonk, non-profit director and parent. She has two fabulous grown children, and currently divides her time between the Gulf coast of Florida and a tiny village in Maine.
Ms. Spencer has published nine romance novels. The first two, Lost in His Arms and Lost and Found, were published by Red Rose Publishing. The other six—Losers Keepers, Triptych, Artful Dodging: The Torpedo Factory Murders, Mai Tais and Mayhem: Murder at Mote Marine (a Sarasota Romance, Lapses of Memory, and the Mason’s Mark —were published by Secret Cravings. Whirlwind Romance, her ninth, was released September 2014.
Contacts:
Blog: http://msspencertalespinner.blogspot.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/msspencertalespinner
Twitter: www.twitter.com/msspencerauthor
GoodReads:http://www.goodreads.com/msspencer

Check out my board at Pinterest for photographs of Providencia and jelly making–
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/msspencerauthor/

Cover Model David Santa Lucia is Fifty Shades Hotter than Christian Grey…I invite you to decide!

Cover Model David Santa Lucia is Fifty Shades Hotter than Christian Grey…I invite you to decide!

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By Shari Nichols

Whenever I think of Valentine’s Day, images of long stemmed red roses, heart shaped boxes of chocolate and of course, hot men come to mind. The Fifty Shades frenzy has hit with a vengeance. This Valentine’s Day women will be lining up at theaters around the globe to finally experience the allusive Christian Grey in all his male glory on the big screen. But there will be another incredibly sexy male on the scene, whose face and muscled physique will soon be everywhere.

I have no doubt he’ll capture the hearts and the imagination of women both young and old. His name is David Santa Lucia, and not only is he easy on the eyes, but he’s smart, grounded and damn if he doesn’t look good soaking wet!

Looking at your pictures, it’s clear that you must’ve turned many heads. When did you first consider a career in modeling? How did you get in the industry?

That’s nice of you to say! To be honest, I’ve had people tell me that I should model, but I never gave it a second thought. It all started this past January. I began training for my first NPC physique competition. I was in the best shape of my life so I posted a couple of progress pictures online, as most competitors do. One day, I got a message from a local photographer asking me if I had any interest in being on the cover of a bestselling author’s next series. I’m usually skeptical when it comes to these kinds of things, but after she explained the details and that I’d be getting paid for my work I decided “why not?” I submitted some additional photos of myself for Author Kimberly Knight to review to make a final decision on who to pick. To my surprise, she chose me to be on the cover of her next series.

The six covers that I’m featured on for her series are the product from my first real photo shoot. I wasn’t convinced about a modeling career until I saw the results and how wonderful the images turned out. Liz Christensen is the photographer that took the incredible shots and managed to capture the moment perfectly. She told me that I was a natural. It got me thinking that I could make something out of this opportunity. My career has been “running” ever since and I’ve been extremely fortunate. I’m forever grateful for all of the wonderful opportunities that have come my way!

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-Your handsome face and gorgeous body have graced many romance novels covers and I can see why. What covers have you done?

Oh god, I’m blushing from these amazing compliments. I work with the best photographers in the industry and we collaborate as a team to get our images seen by the wonderful author community.

My first job came from Amazon Best Selling Author Kimberly Knight’s B&S series. Additional covers came from New York Times and USA Today Best Selling Author Aurora Rose Reynolds. I’m also featured on another cover by Aurora that will be released in the near future. Currently I have eight released covers and three more that’ll be coming out in the near future by Aurora Rose Reynolds, Emma Hart, and Sandi Lynn. I’m also discussing deals with a few other authors right now. Hopefully there will be even more to come, so please stay in touch with my page to see my new covers.

-What do you do in your free time?

I don’t have too much free time. I’m either at school, work, studying, exercising, networking online with authors and photographers, answering emails/messages, or cooking and preparing meals. When I do find some free time I like to spend it with my beautiful girlfriend and go out to a nice dinner or just relax at home and goof around with her. She insists that I’m secretly a dork at heart, but she loves it.

-What would a woman have to do to win your heart?

I have a wonderful and amazing girlfriend. She’s the beautiful female model Rachael Baltes, who’s featured on the covers with me. I’m picky when it comes to dating. I’ve had my fair share of liars, cheaters, drama lovers, fighters, and crazies. From all of my bad experiences I have learned to have a keen eye to even the slightest red flag that would tell me to avoid a female. The most important characteristic that a woman must possess to win my heart is the ability to make me genuinely laugh and not just once in a while, but all the time. Rachael has the best sense of humor and she always keeps things lively and fun with all of her positive and wild energy. I also need a woman who exercises regularly and knows and understands the challenges and the value of training hard, as it is a major part of my daily life. Besides, there is nothing sexier than seeing your woman dripping in sweat from a grueling work out! Aside from humor and exercise, my partner must be a genuine sweetheart. I’ve dated attractive woman who were just nasty and let me tell you, looks can only get you so far with me. Rachael is both beautiful and a total sweetheart. She has my back no matter what.

-Where are you from originally? Where do you call home now?

I’m from Buffalo, New York and I still reside here to this day. I plan on moving south this year to seek out employment after I graduate from my doctor of physical therapy program. I love New York, but I need to go where the opportunities are and to a warmer climate.

-What can we expect from you in the future?

Well it’s my hope that you should expect to see me on many more covers. I have seven photo shoots scheduled in the next few months with excellent photographers. There will be a ton of great new pics coming out. I’m also trying to break my way into the fashion industry. I’m hoping to get some exposure in fashion and fitness magazines in the future. I’m also looking to earn sponsorships through work out supplements and clothing companies. You can definitely expect me to continue competing in physique competitions. I will also continue to travel around the U.S. for author signing events, which is wonderful because it gives me a chance to meet and spend time with my author friends, as well as my fans. I love to meet the fans and enjoy getting a chance to talk and joke around with them!

-Who do you admire most? Why?

I would say that the person who I admire the most would have to be my best friend Ryan Boggs who’s a fellow classmate in my Doctor of Physical Therapy Program. Balancing my modeling career, traveling, training, physique competitions, relationships, and everyday life while also enrolled in a professional doctoral program is nothing short of tough. Every day is a challenge and Ryan has been the man behind the scenes who keeps me on track when things get overwhelming. Ryan will also be my future business partner when we open up our own practice. He’s truly an inspiration and sets the bar for human character and morality.

-Are you ever shy or embarrassed to get such adulation from women for your looks?

I definitely still get shy and embarrassed when I get such adulation from women. I don’t know if that will ever go away. People make fun of me after I receive compliments because I turn red and can be at a loss for words. It still amazes me that people can have such nice things to say about me because I just view myself as a regular guy. Nevertheless, the compliments from my fans make me feel amazing inside when I see their appreciation.

-What’s your favorite food?

Italian food! I love all things Italian and am an absolute sucker for good bread. I always tell people that when I am sick, down, or upset, just bring me a fresh loaf of good bread and I will be right as rain, when I am not strictly dieting of course.

-What do you do to have fun? Distress?

I go to the gym, of course. I also love bicycling outdoors in the summer and usually go about twenty miles at a time. I love watching the scenery and the beauty of nature as I ride. I also like people watching and seeing what others are up to as I cruise by their houses. Hiking in the woods is another favorite pastime of mine. I love to get engulfed in the beauty of nature. It frees me from the stresses of the world.

-What is the best part of your job? The worst?

I will start with the worst part first because there isn’t too much that’s bad. Staying in prime shape costs a lot of money, and requires a ton of healthy food as well as supplements. I wish that I had more time to chat with authors, photographers, friends, and fans.

The best part of my job is getting to travel around the U.S. and getting to meet so many amazing and hard working authors, photographers, and models. It’s crazy that I never even knew a book community like this existed until I became a part of it and I’m thankful for the opportunities that have come my way. I’ve met so many truly wonderful people, new friends, and amazing fans. Before I began modeling, I rarely traveled because I was so busy with school and money was tight. Traveling has to be one of favorite things to do in life. I love experiencing beautiful and exotic places and cultures. Staying in one place my whole life just made me feel like I was truly missing out on life. Modeling has allowed me to participate in what I’d been missing the most out of life and for that I couldn’t be more thankful.

Thank you, Dave you’ve been a doll and a pleasure to work with. You certainly make this job fun! Check out Dave on FB, Twitter and Instagram.

FB Fan Page = https://www.facebook.com/davesantaluciafitnessmodel
Instagram = http://instagram.com/davidsantalucia
TSU = https://www.tsu.co/DavidSantaLucia
Twitter = https://twitter.com/dsantalucia87

sharinichols
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Shari Nichols is the author of WITCH HUNTER, a new erotic romance with Ellora’s Cave Publishing. Shari grew up in a small town in Connecticut where haunted houses, ghosts and Ouija boards were common place, spurring her fascination with all things paranormal. Ever since she read her first Barbara Cartland novel, her life-long dream has been to write sexy, romantic stories. She’s thrilled to spend her days in sweats, eating chocolate while pounding on her keyboard to create her next novel.
Website:http://sharinichols.com/index.html
Twitter:https://twitter.com/shari_nich
Facebook:https://www.facebook.com/sharinich
GoodReads:https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/29514513-shari-nichols
http://amzn.to/1uOKcRk

Determined MBI (Magickal Bureau of investigations)agent Alex Denopoulos will stop at nothing to catch a killer, including recruit notorious felon, Willow McCray to work for the agency. The lines between duty and passion become blurred the more time he spends with the sultry witch. In the midst of the investigation, they succumb to the dark edges of desire, placing both their lives in danger. Alex will risk more than his badge to keep her alive.
Kick-ass witch Willow must use her powers for good if she wants to stay out of Hellios, a mage prison for those who have broken the Wiccan Rede of ‘Harm ye None.’ Willow never expects to fall so hard for Alex, a mortal with a penchant for justice and a deep seated hatred of witches. Though a future together seems impossible, she doesn’t want to let him go. If only she can vanquish the evil surrounding them and give Alex what he wants, her mind and body-before she loses her heart and maybe her very soul in the process.

Our visiting guest ~ Helen Barnfield

Fight With Me – Kristen Proby

Kristen Proby’s ‘In Seattle’ series is definitely hotting up. Following mixed reviews of Part 1 (her debut novel) the second instalment of this sizzling series seems to have already received a more positive response from fans with much more depth from the characters, a more credible storyline and far racier sex scenes. And of course it’s always nice to catch up with characters from the previous book as well as being fleetingly introduced to the stars of the upcoming novels. Here is a general overview of Part 2 of the ‘In Seattle’ series – Fight With Me.

The story
Sassy Jules is a driven career woman. Sexy Nate is her boss. The pair shared a night of passion eight months ago and have being trying to remain professional ever since. With their company holding a ‘no fraternizing’ policy (meaning that any colleagues who become romantically involved will be instantly sacked) it could be dangerous for either of them to have a repeat performance, so why are they finding it so hard to stay away from each other? When Nate offers Jules the opportunity to spend two, secretive days with him to see where their relationship can go, will she be able to resist his charms? Or will she risk everything she has worked for to be with the man she has unwittingly fallen for? Expect tension, turmoil and testosterone to fly as Nate does everything in his power to win Jules over in this romantic and seriously sexy sequel to Come Away With Me.

The characters
Fight With Me is a very character driven novel and luckily the two main characters are full of fire, sass and personality that makes them interesting and likeable. Jules appears as the roommate of Natalie from the previous novel and is similar to her in some ways, only a lot less one dimensional. Jules is hardworking, loyal and intelligent but she also has a badass side to her and it’s clear that she won’t stand for anyone messing with her. She isn’t without her faults – at some points of the novel she appears to run away from her problems and ditch Nate as soon as things get complicated which is irritating behavior from a strong woman who supposedly knows her own mind. Still, she is a tough cookie and manages to face her demons as the story progresses.

Nate is the epitome of sexy. With his professional working image contrasting with his extra-curricular bad boy persona, he is far more appealing than Luke in the first book and a character that readers are apt to swoon over. A tattooed, motorcycle riding, MMA fighting hottie with an x-rated piercing to boot, Nate oozes sex appeal and is the archetypal alpha male in more ways than one. Aside from his sexiness he is genuinely good guy who deeply cares for Jules and is willing to pull out all of the stops to impress her. A little like Luke, he can be overbearing at times and it is a good job that the women in this series never actually mean ‘no’ when they say it, because the male characters simply don’t give up when it comes to winning them over. But Nate does show a tender, emotional side on more than one occasion making him appear less aggressive and more genuine than his predecessor.

“You look lovely with the firelight dancing on your skin, and your beautiful blue eyes look happy.”

Together he and Jules make a fiery, strong and passionate couple.

Again, we get the opportunity to meet the family and friends of the main characters who may well appear in the coming novels. Readers will certainly want to see more of Jules’s four brothers – Will, Matt, Caleb and Issac – who are also impossibly hot and very protective over their sister. We also get to catch up with Luke and Nat. In fact the only unlikeable character in this novel is Nate’s meddling ex who tries to cause problems but for couple but hey, every story needs a villain.

The writing
Proby has a real knack of creating characters who are, above all else, extremely hot which is important in an erotic novel. However in this novel she has crafted her writing well to show that there is genuine affection and depth between Jules and Nate. We see how during the months following their initial encounter Nate takes special notice of Jules. He knows how she takes her coffee and that she likes chocolate cheesecake. And when it comes to the erotic scenes in the novel the reader is treated to a combination of slow, sensual love making combined with hot, frantic sex. Whereas the sex scenes in the first novel were slightly repetitive, there are a lot of variations in this novel which is a great improvement. In places the story does lack drama but it is a character driven story and the real storyline here is how the relationship develops.

One thing is certain; Proby’s series has improved dramatically from Part 1 to Part 2 and if this continues readers will have a lot to look forward to with the coming titles.

 

It’s a Bundle of Fun with Sabrina York!

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It’s a Bundle of Fun with Sabrina York!
It’s so hard to believe summer is already over and we’re heading into Fall! You know what we need now? A big fire in the fireplace and a kindle full of awesome books. And maybe some marshmallows.
As avid readers, you’ve already probably discovered the benefits of collections—where you can snap up multiple books by an assemblage of authors. It’s a great way to snag a deal, and to try out new authors with very little risk.
For an author, there are benefits too. Most importantly, we gain access to readers of other authors like us—we hope, if they buy the discounted bundle for their favorite author, they will read our books too. If we’ve done our job right, they are so enthralled, they want to read more of our books. Beyond that, every author benefits from the promotional efforts of the others in the set and, if we’re really lucky, we can learn a lot from authors who have been at this game longer.
I was blessed to be included in three collections this summer and I wanted to tell you about them because they won’t be around forever. And, of course, because I think they are awesome!
HOT ALPHA SEALS
The first was Hot Alpha SEALs, a military mega bundle featuring 12 award winning and bestselling authors. With these powerhouses at the helm, is it any wonder our bundle hit both the New York Times and the USA Today bestseller list?
If you love military romance, you won’t want to miss this deal: HOT ALPHA SEALS: Military Romance Megaset available for $2.99.

The Hot Alpha Authors include Anne Elizabeth, Cat Johnson, Cindy Dees, Cristin Harber, Delilah Devlin, Elle James, Gennita Low, J.M. Madden, P.T. Michelle, Sabrina York, Sharon Hamilton and Teresa Reasor.

AVAILABLE NOW (for a limited time) : http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00LBFVNQS

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My contribution, Stone Hard SEAL, is an action-packed story of a hostage rescue gone terribly wrong…at least, for the SEAL with the heart of stone, determined to avoid love at any cost. Though he has trained for any contingency, Ryder “Stone” Maddox is not prepared for Lily Wilson’s naively seductive wiles. Especially once she decides the hot, hard hero is the man she wants.

BROUGHT TO HIS KNEES

Shortly after Hot Alpha SEALs exploded on the scene, my second collection came out. Brought to His Knees is a collection of eleven scorching stories about men brought to their knees…by love. You can still grab this steamy collection for a bargain price of 99¢. It’s a wide variety of military romance, contemporary, paranormal, ménage and more.

My story, Whipped, tells the tale of poor Dane Coulter, who is mourning the loss of his best friend, fellow Special Ops buddy, Cody. Oh, Cody didn’t die. It’s worse. He’s getting married. Cody is, in Dane’s opinion, whipped. Dane swears he will never suffer the same fate. But when he meets a woman who can take all his dominant loving and beg for more, he realizes he may have met his match. It’s a damn shame she’s the one woman in the world his man-code deems untouchable…his best friend’s sister.
Though it is a short novella, Whipped is getting some glowing praise (which makes me happy!) Here’s one of my favorite quotes, from Coffee and Books Blog: “5 Stars—Oh my goodness! I loved, loved, loved this story! The sex was off-the-charts hot! And I mean HOT!” You can read more reviews for Whipped and the entire collection on Goodreads : https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22796872-brought-to-his-knees
Interested? Here are the BROUGHT TO HIS KNEES Buy Links:
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Brought-His-Knees-M-Griffin-ebook/dp/B00MQH71KW
B&N – http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/brought-to-his-knees-am-griffin/1119993064?ean=2940045653121
Itunes – https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/brought-to-his-knees/id902008990?mt=11&ign-mpt=uo%3D4
KOBO: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/brought-to-his-knees
ARe: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-broughttohisknees-1581282-362.html

Hometown Heroes Cover lo res

HOMETOWN HEROES–HOTTER EVER AFTER
My final foray into the world of collections, at least for the moment, is a wonderful set with a special place in my heart. This summer, we lost our beloved lab, my friend and companion for 12 years. I was heartbroken. But I have to say, it helped a lot knowing I wrote Heartbreak on a Stick…just for this collection.
All proceeds for this charity bundle go to Pets for Vets—saving unwanted pets and providing support to our troops. It doesn’t bring back my baby, but it sure feels good to be able to make a difference for other homeless dogs. It would be wonderful if you decided to support this cause by grabbing a copy of your own, and sharing the word about it to your friends.
On September 30th, Hometown Heroes: Hotter Ever After releases (though it is available for preorder now). This contemporary romance bundle features 16 novels with happily-ever-after endings, including previously published readers’ favorites and brand-new material. Hotter Ever After authors include Melissa Schroeder, Lucy Monroe, Nancy Warren, Sabrina York, Allie K. Adams, Destiny Blaine, Cathryn Cade, Jami Davenport, Kate Davies, Taryn Elliott/Cari Quinn, Rachel Grant, Sandy James, Adrianne Lee, Hildie McQueen, Katy Regnery and Sandy Sullivan.
Here’s a little more about the collection:
HOMETOWN HEROES–HOTTER EVER AFTER

They’re all hometown heroes, guys from small towns who’ve made a name for themselves, big or small, who’ve withstood the odds and risen to the challenge, who are heroes in their own right. Now, these sixteen stories are available in a single bundle for a limited time at the discounted price of $1.99. All proceeds from this bundle benefit the Pets for Vets charity.
Available September 30th. Preorder: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00N06ORVE

My story is Heartbreak on a Stick. Here’s the blurb:
When A-List movie star Jason Sherwood returns to the hometown that once rejected him, he has one goal in mind: Getting revenge on the woman who broke his heart so many years ago. But when he discovers his assumptions about her were wrong, he only wants to win her back. Hopefully, it’s not too late.
Gina Fox has always pined for her high school lover…and now he has returned, turning her world upside down. But life isn’t as simple now as it was then. And she can’t get over the fact that Jason walked away from her without a word. When he launches a sultry seduction, she tries, with everything in her, to resist…because at his core, Jason is nothing but heartbreak on a stick.
CONNECT WITH SABRINA
So that’s it! Believe it or not, that’s only a fraction of what I’ve been up to, and I have many more projects coming soon, including a Cowboy Collection, a super sexy military romance collection and three full length Highlander romances in 2015 (from St. Martin’s Press).
Sound like a lot to keep up with? Yeah. I agree. If you want updates on my projects and coming deals, as well as all the contests I’ll be sponsoring for these awesome releases, subscribe to my newsletter. Simply send me an email with “Enter Me” in the subject line and not only will you be signed up for alerts, I’ll enter you in my ongoing Tiara giveaway!
Have a wonderful Fall, baby!
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About Sabrina York
Her Royal Hotness, Sabrina York, is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author of hot, humorous stories for smart and sexy readers. Her titles range from sweet & sexy to scorching erotic romance. Connect with her on twitter @sabrina_york, on Facebook or on Pintrest. Check out Sabrina’s books and read an excerpt on Amazon or wherever e-books are sold. Visit her webpage at http://www.sabrinayork.com to check out her books, excerpts and contests. Free Teaser Book: http://sabrinayork.com/home-2/sabrina-yorks-teaser-book/ And don’t forget to enter to win the royal tiara!

 

WIcked Wild Wednesday with Dani Wade- giveaway

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Any Wicked Wild Wednesday would be the perfect place for my Backstage Pass heroes. After all, they’re Rock Stars! Can’t get any wilder!

The very idea of rock stars conjures up the image of hard living, fast moving, love ‘em and leave ‘em men who can never conform to the hearth and home version of HEA most people have.

They’re right.

The very nature of rock stars’ lives and schedules are outside the norm—but that doesn’t mean they can never be tamed! The heroines in my Backstage Pass series are living the fantasy of being loved (and mastered) by these bad, bad boys.

They are ordinary women living extraordinary dreams! Their heroes play hard and love even harder. They may not work a 9 to 5, but these men understand what their women need—and are more than happy to give it to them. Each heroine has her own unique fear, and her hero is the perfect man to set her free. Though she doesn’t always agree with that—at first.

This fascinating dichotomy between who we think rock stars are, and what they can truly be if we see them as real men with needs, pain, and secrets like everyone else drew me into this series with a vengeance. I had to write these heroes! And find them the perfect woman for their happily ever after. The men of the Solar Uprising rock band will surprise you…I promise.

I’d love to introduce y’all to the wild, wicked men of the Backstage Pass series, so I’ll be giving away 2 e-copies of Book 1—Finding Her Rhythm. Just comment for a chance to win and tell us—who would be your real life rock star hero of choice?

Here’s a glimpse of my newest release in this series, Settling the Score (Book 2):

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“You’re far too concerned about things outside of yourself—you can’t turn your brain off and simply focus on the pleasure.” Pleasure he desperately wanted to give her.
Tears welling into her eyes told him he was on track, even if her mouth wouldn’t admit it. He held up the blindfold once more.
“Which is why I need to teach you to shut all that shit out. To concentrate on how good you feel, not what I want from you. Not how you look.”
She started, obviously surprised by his insight. Oh yeah, he’d known about her obsession with her looks for years. He wasn’t going to let that get in his way either. He brushed the length of material along her jawline.
“Let me do this, Becca. For you.” For me.
Those oh too vulnerable eyes closed once more, her chin tilting up in surrender. This close he could see her hard swallow as she awaited his next move, the pulse at the base of her neck picking up speed. The beauty of her in that position took his breath away. If he could get his hands on Rockin’ Reno, he’d break every bone in his sleazy little body.
Way past time for Becca to find out what it was like to be with a man who put her needs before his own.

Daniel Korvello isn’t your average Joe with a case of unrequited lust. He’s a hard rock front man who wonders if his publicist will ever see him as anything other than a job. Then they team up to hunt down a threat to Daniel’s family…and he seizes the chance to show her he’s up for more than just a one night stand.
Becca Buchanan already lived through one rock-star scandal with her reputation barely intact. She’s determined never to put herself, or her family, through that again. Only she can’t deny the desire she feels for Daniel. When he exposes the molten heat beneath her Ice Maiden exterior, she may never be able to freeze him out again.
Then their amateur investigation takes a dangerous turn that threatens the lives of those they both love. Can their newfound trust extend past the bedroom? Can Daniel let go of his guilt enough to embrace a future with Becca?
SETTLING THE SCORE Buy Links

Settling the Score – Amazon Associates

http://amzn.to/1t0DTFd

Barnes & Noble

Smashwords

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www.DaniWade.com
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