Sunday, May 30, 2010

Twenty-Five Years Ago Today by Stacy Juba

Twenty-Five Years Ago Today
ISBN 978-0-615-29011-9
trade paperback
Amazon Link:

Author web sites:

Obit writer and editorial assistant Kris Langley feels like the newsroom
slave – that is, until she stumbles across an unsolved murder while
compiling "25 Years Ago Today" items from the microfilm. Determined to
launch her reporting career, Kris investigates the cold case of Diana
Ferguson, an artistic young cocktail waitress obsessed with Greek and
Roman mythology.

She soon learns that old news never leaves the morgue and that
yesterday's headline is tomorrow's danger, for finding out the truth
about that night twenty-five years ago may shatter Kris’s present,
costing her love, her career, and ultimately, her life.


"Kris? Kris?"

Her eyes snapped open, the scream ripping from her throat. She glanced
around the dark room, shapes foreign, distorted by shadows. "No. I'm
sorry Nicole. . . . "

"Kris? Kris?" Someone shook her shoulder. She gasped.

"Kris." Eric hugged her. Warm. He felt so warm. He stroked her hair,
whispering in her ear. "It's okay. Everything's gonna be okay."
Reality rushed back to her. She hadn't lasted through the movie.
She had turned off the television and slipped into unconsciousness. Eric's
face fuzzed in and out of focus.

He switched on the lamp. "Want a glass of water?"


"What were you dreaming?"

"I don't remember."

"You screamed out ‘Nicole.’ You woke me up."

"I'm sorry."

"Don't be. Nicole was your cousin, right? Tell me about her." Eric
rubbed her hair again, the gentle strokes calming her.

"We were the same age," Kris said. "Our families were close. We lived
in the same neighborhood."

"That must've been fun."

"It was. Lots of fun." Tears spilled down her cheeks. Eric traced one
with his fingertip.

"My mother told me your cousin was the girl who was killed by a
neighbor,” he said in a hushed voice. “I remember hearing about it when
I was a kid. She went to a different school, but it still shook up all
my friends. It was awful.”

He wasn't wearing a shirt, just sweatpants. She must have scared the
hell out of him.

"I’d rather not discuss it,” Kris said.

“I want to help.”

Kris felt the words surging to her throat, but she couldn't tell him.

Not now. Not ever. “You are helping, just by being here. I don't want
to be alone."

She pressed her lips to Eric's, first softly then more urgent. He
responded without hesitation, crushing his mouth against hers. Kris dug
her nails into his shoulders and the smooth contoured muscles of his
chest. He gently laid her back and nibbled her ear, working a sensuous
trail down her neck.

He glided down the zipper of her hooded sweatshirt and skimmed his thumb
across her belly. She closed her eyes, arching as his hand slipped
upward with agonizing slowness. Her stomach rose and fell as his fingers
splayed over her heart. Kris's breathing quickened into a pant, every
nerve ending igniting.

His eyes moved up to her, communicating desire. "I care about you, Kris.
I was happy when you showed up tonight. I was afraid you didn't feel
the same way about me."

"I do."

"Are you sure you want to do this?"

"Yes," she whispered. "Stop talking."

Kris reached behind his head and pulled him down. Her thoughts scattered
as she banished Nicole's disapproving ghost to the dim recesses of her

Twenty-Five Years Ago Today
ISBN 978-0-615-29011-9
trade paperback
Amazon Link:

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Leslie Goosemoon Rides Again by Giselle Renarde

Title: Leslie Goosemoon Rides Again
Author: Giselle Renarde
buy link: http://www.

Leslie Goosemoon the cowgirl used to be Leslie Goosemoon the cowboy, and folks in these parts don't take kindly to changes.

New to the rodeo experience, Dina doesn't understand why the biggest star on the circuit is despised by all. When she runs a search on the rodeo champ, it all becomes clear: Leslie Goosemoon the cowgirl used to be Leslie Goosemoon the cowboy, and folks in these parts don't take too kindly to those people. The town's intolerable ignorance drives Dina to seek out Leslie at her modest cabin, where desire is sparked by enlightening conversation, dusty jeans, and a refreshing shower in the great outdoors.


“Leslie? Leslie Goosemoon?” Dina cried, chasing after the rodeo champ. “Wait up, will ya?”

The remarkable rider stopped in her tracks twenty meters ahead, and Dina slowed her gait from a gallop to an amble. It felt like a good five minutes before the mysterious stranger turned her head. Even when she did, the brim of her tawny cowboy hat obscured her eyes until she took it off to wipe dusty sweat from her brow.

“Well?” Leslie Goosemoon prodded.

Dina’s blood ran cold. She wasn’t anticipating such piercing blue eyes on a rough and tumble rider. Her eyes should be brown like the mud spray across her cheek.

“Hi,” Dina began, forgetting why she’d chased her down in the first place.

“Whaddya want?” the rider grumbled, her quick-draw stance keeping Dina at a distance.

“It just seems strange that nobody came to congratulate you. All the other girls in competition have their legions of fans. Here you’re the big winner and you’ve got no one telling you how great you rode today.” Dina tried to sound casual, taking a tentative step forward.

With a shrug, Leslie Goosemoon replied, “Lots of folks on the circuit could do without me.”

“Well, of course they could; if you weren’t around, those other girls might have a chance in hell at winning. Do you always ride like that?”

Another shrug, and a fraction of a smile.

“This is my first time,” Dina went on with a keen smirk. “At a rodeo, I mean.”

“That so?” Leslie asked, raising an eyebrow.

“Yup.” Silence made Dina nervous, so she filled it. “My roommate’s boyfriend, Rod the Clod, commandeered our TV during the Calgary Stampede last year. I never liked cowboy stuff before that, but when you’re subjected to something night and day…”

“…it grows on you.”

“Exactly. Although, I never did warm up to Rod the Clod.” Dina hesitated, but what the hell. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. “I probably hated him so much because that rat bastard totally crushed my chance to get with Vicky. Hard to make a move with him on the couch twenty-four-seven.”

With a wolfish smile, Leslie gave her a blatant once-over. “You lookin’ to get over Vicky?”

Dina shrugged, meeting her penetrative gaze straight on. Leslie took two steps closer. In one fluid motion, her arm swooped around Dina’s waist and a dusty hand brushed through her hair, firm against her scalp. Those pink lips hovered like Tantalus’ water glass, so close she could nearly sip them.

“Best way to get over someone is to get under someone.”
Giselle Renarde
Canada just got hotter!

Visit me online

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Rust Belt by Jessica Freely

Seth is scarred, body and soul. When he meets lonely, virginal David, their shatteringly erotic encounter makes anything seem possible, even love. But in a desperate town, the past is hard to escape.

Buy Link:


“Want some Thai noodles?”

Seth looked up from the trash can he’d been sorting through and into the most beautiful brown eyes he’d ever seen. They belonged to a young man about his own age, on the short side and slight of build, with blond hair and cute, pert features. Seth had seen him around before, had covertly admired his ass as he made his way to and from his job at the little book store across the street. But until now he hadn’t realized how much he looked like the Kid. The resemblance hit Seth like a mallet to the face and he took an involuntary step backward.

“Hey, easy. I’m not going to hurt you. I just saw you and…” He lifted a Styrofoam box. “I couldn’t finish my lunch and I thought you might…”

Seth blushed, though whether it was because this guy actually thought he was afraid or simply because of being caught rummaging through the trash, he didn’t care to examine. He ducked his head and accepted the noodles. “Thank you.”

“No problem.” The guy turned and walked back across the street to the book store. It was a cozy place with a green awning and old-fashioned brass fittings on the door. It stood sandwiched between a bakery and the Thai Restaurant.

Seth watched him go, noting the way his brisk strides made his butt move. Sudden wistfulness overcame him. “Not for you,” he whispered to himself.

The guy, Seth decided to call him Books, really did look a lot like the Kid, but that was a bad thing to dwell on. If he opened those floodgates he’d drown in a tide of bad memories. Instead, he went over to a nearby bench and opened the Styrofoam box. Steam and chili spice wafted up and he lowered his face over the still-hot noodles, breathing in the aroma. The red pepper stung his nostrils and cleared his sinuses. His stomach, ever the pragmatist, rumbled and he dug in, allowing no more thoughts of things he couldn’t have or change.

God the noodles were good. Hot, with strips of chicken and little ground up chunks of peanuts. Seth couldn’t remember the last time he’d had anything as good as this. And there was a lot of it, too. Enough to take back to his little hidey hole under the overpass and finish later.

Mouth bulging and stomach rapidly filling, Seth sat back on the bench and let one of those rare waves of sated ease wash over him. Hunger and remorse were distant things in this moment. Soon they’d be back to keep him company, but for now, he was free to think on other things.

Like Books, for instance. He’d gone out of his way to give Seth this food, literally: the restaurant was on the same side of the street as the book store. Most people wouldn’t do that. Most people were too caught up in their own lives. Even the ones who did notice him usually shied away, uncomfortable or afraid. Seth was tall, rangy, with long unkempt hair and a black beard badly in need of a trim. With his army jacket from Coats for Hope, he resembled a crazy Vietnam vet. It took a fair amount of guts to walk up to a guy like him, who was pawing through a trash can, and offer him your leftovers. But Books had, and he’d crossed the street to do it.

Seth had seen Books walking to work and back every day. He was a book store clerk without enough money for his own car. He probably could have used these leftovers himself.

There weren’t enough brave, kind people in the world. Sitting there on the bench, staring at the book store as he ate, Seth made up his mind to look out for this one. This little business district was surrounded by a lot of not-so-cool neighborhoods and abandoned industrial areas.

The Kid was dead. There was nothing Seth could do about that and maybe there never had been. But keeping Books safe represented a new opportunity for Seth to do something useful with his misbegotten life.


But when Books really needed him, Seth wasn’t there.

It was three weeks since the leftovers incident and every night Seth made sure to be around the book store at closing time. Not wanting to alarm Books, Seth shadowed him from a distance.

The weather that night was typical for November: cold and drizzly. Seth hung back more than usual because the fine mist in the air would carry the sound of his footsteps farther. He desperately did not want Books to notice him, and that made him wonder, was he really protecting him with this nightly secret escort, or just stalking him? The fact that once he got back to his sleeping place under the overpass, he would jerk off to visions of Books as he had done every night for three weeks made a good case for the stalking rap.

So maybe it was these doubts or maybe it was just his ever-demanding hunger that made him go with the trick instead of continuing to shadow Books.

The business district dwindled away past Seventh Street and the next several blocks were dominated by an old derelict stamping plant, its surrounding parking lots, and an abandoned warehouse that now served as a cruising ground. Seth was walking past the warehouse when a car pulled up and some guy leaned out the window. “Hey, I’ll give you a twenty if you blow me.”

Seth turned a trick or two from time to time. Often it was the difference between a meal and another day going hungry. Just like right now. He hadn’t had any luck dumpster diving for the past two days. His stomach was so tight it was wrapped around his spine.

But he’d made a vow, and it’d be kinda hard to protect Books with this closeted suburban queer’s cock down his throat. Seth glanced up and saw Books turning down the street that ran alongside the plant. It was only a few more blocks from there to his apartment.

“Hey, deerhunter, you want the money or not?” The trick waved a twenty at him.

He really did. And Books was almost home. Seth’s hunger took over and he nodded and reached for the money.

He was on his knees in the alley around the corner, clutching the twenty in his fist and about to go down on the trick when he heard the shouting -- angry voices and one frightened one from the direction of the old stamping plant.

Shit! Books!

He stood up and shoved the twenty at the trick. “I’m sorry,” he said, and he took off toward the plant.

Jessica Freely

Sunday, May 23, 2010

The Back Stairs by KC Kendricks

available now at Amber Allure
Gay romance with a paranormal twist

Fallon Roxbury has a nose for trouble, and the uncanny ability for landing in the middle of it the moment he finds it. While investigating the gruesome murder of a young male prostitute in the red-light district, Fallon gets a whiff of something very strange. Forensics has unidentified hairs. Very unidentified hairs, like nothing in any of the textbooks. Following a tip from a person of interest, Fallon meets Sundown, an apparent hustler who knows a lot more than he will admit.
Getting personally involved with Sundown breaks every rule in the police manual, and in Fallon’s own personal code. Sundown is like a drug, and Fallon can’t stop at just one hit. When Sundown is forced to reveal the truth, Fallon’s world is turned upside down, and he’s left with only two options: check himself in for psychiatric evaluation, or accept a new reality with a strange shift.
Shapeshifters, that is...
I took a breath to tell him I was leaving, and caught the aroma of fresh-brewed java beneath the scents of sandalwood and patchouli. I was tired of getting jerked around, even by a man so incredibly sexy. Put it on to brew, my ass.
“You’re awfully sure of yourself, aren’t you? I don’t need pseudo intimate conversation any more than I need to flirt.”
He shook his head. “You didn’t listen very well, Fallon.”
“Listen to what? I’ve a mind to haul your scrawny carcass down to the precinct house, and let someone else pick your brain for answers, but I don’t have a legitimate reason to have you interrogated. Yet.”
“Tough talk, but you don’t mean any of it. Please, Fallon. Come. Sit at my table, and think of nothing but my very good coffee.”
Would it be so bad to spend half an hour talking with this attractive young man? Heaven help me, he drew me, a tired moth to his steady flame. And he had my favorite coffee, already hot.
Words echoed in my memory. I tried to pull them in so I could hear them again. What had Muffin said? More importantly, it was what she hadn’t said. She didn’t actually say anyone here knew Michael Carlton.
“I’ll sit at your table on one condition.”
He tilted his head, a smile teasing his full lips. “Oh? What is that?”
“You tell me your name.”
Was it victory I saw in his green eyes, or desire? I needed to know if they were the same. His chin lifted as his gaze locked to mine.
“You can call me Sundown.”
I trembled as the girl’s words resonated within me.
Take the back stairs. You’ll find what you need there.

I was two steps beyond the third landing when a male voice called to me from below. My heart slammed against my ribs.
“Lieutenant Roxbury, wait up.”
I paused and looked over my shoulder as Sundown took the steps, two at a time, to catch up. He stopped on the landing below me and met my gaze, his green eyes alight with amusement.
“I did not expect you to return so soon, Fallon.”
I wasn’t in the mood to waste time in small talk. He’d deliberately sidetracked me the other night and, as wonderful as the diversion had been, he needed to know I was aware of his tactics.
“The girl I spoke with at the crime scene is your sister, and you didn’t tell me. Why?”
“Because she is not my sister. I wouldn’t lie to you.”
I hopped down the two steps to the landing. “Listen, Sundown, or whatever your name really is, I have photos of her, part of the formal record of the crime scene. She looks enough like you to be your twin. If I hadn’t let my dick control me, I’d have put it together last night.”
He glanced away, a quick darting of his gorgeous eyes, then he looked back.
“She is not my sister, but we share a bloodline. She is gone, Fallon.”
“You’re hindering my investigation by hiding her.”
Sundown shook his head. “She didn’t see Michael Carlton, dead or alive, or anyone else go in or out of the alley until your people showed up.”
I clamped down on my anger. “That’s good to know, but I need to hear it from her.”
“Do you?” He cocked his head to the side. “You’re out of luck, Fallon. She is gone from here, and it is beyond my ability to bring her back.”
“Why’d she send me here, then?”
His green eyes flashed with his inner fire, anchoring me where I stood. “So I could give you want you needed, Fallon. What you need me to give you again.”
“Don’t be so damn sure of yourself. I don’t need you.” I lied, and he knew it, the knowledge reflected back at me in his level gaze.
“Come inside and tell me you do not need what I offer you.”
I didn’t think I could. My resolve to bully him into giving up Muffin’s whereabouts waned with every pheromone-laden breath I took. I stood inside the ring of warmth and scent that surrounded him. My erection relentlessly swelled toward completion, and I couldn’t stop it.
“I can’t compromise my investigation further, Sundown. Carlton’s parents are flying in to claim the body. I need to have answers for them.”
His fingers grazed mine, the gentle touch heating my blood.
"I knew you were a good man. I trust you, Fallon. Will you trust me?”
“I trust you to be nothing but trouble.”

Gay romance with a paranormal twist

KC Kendricks
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Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Wicked Desire by Tory Richards

Wicked Desire by Tory Richards:
EBook formats ISBN: 978-1-60313-325-8
Trade paperback ISBN: 978-1-60313-324-1
to buy link:

Maggie’s on the run, leaving behind a marriage gone badly, a dangerous ex-husband, and one of the most crime infested neighborhoods in Maine. She isn’t looking to replace any of it, until she runs into Matt Dillon. A prime example of an alpha male, he’s big and tough with an attitude to match. The only problem is he’s determined to ignore the instant attraction between them.

Matt’s running away, too. He’s hoping a new beginning in a small town will help him get on with his life without the woman he loves. What he hadn’t counted on was meeting someone like Maggie Myers. He knows as soon as he runs into the curvaceous redhead that she’s nothing but trouble, and she proves it time and time again. Trying to ignore her is impossible, and before long passion explodes between them, sealing their fate.


He threatened more than her peace of mind. Maggie was feeling things she hadn’t felt in a long time, yearnings long buried. She wanted to get closer to Matt if that were possible. Her fingers began to twitch beneath his hand, her palm smoothing against his flesh in an innocent caress. She shifted her leg cautiously, catching his indrawn hiss when her flesh glided across his penis.

She wanted to feel more of him, so much more. Fire erupted inside her. She broke free of his gentle restraint and let the caress take her where it would, where he would let it. Knowing she would only get singed if he didn’t feel the same way.

In a lightning fast move Matt surprised her by grabbing her wrist and flipping her over. He moved over her body, pinning her on the bed. She gasped with surprise, powerless to move against the steely fingers encircling her wrist. The blood coursed through her veins like a spinning tidal pool, leaving her breathless at the intensity. Their eyes locked, their breaths becoming one. His expression was fierce, his eyes blazing down at her. He looked savage, like a hungry animal close to the end of his control.

"Do you know what you’re inviting?" His voice was hoarse with obvious need, almost angry. His nostrils flared with every breath he took. His gaze dropped to her lips, and Maggie parted them, running her tongue over them in anticipation of his kiss. "I won't be gentle, Maggie. I haven’t been with a woman in a long time." It came out like a threat. Did he want to hear her say no? His gaze lowered to her breasts, and then before she could grasp his intentions his mouth was there, loving her through the thin satin of her gown.

His hands glided down her sides to her hips, then around to her bottom. Fingers sank deeply into the soft mounds before he pulled her tightly against him and ground his erection against her. Maggie moaned with growing hunger, the tingle becoming a pulsing throb of desire.

"Can you take it rough?"

His comment inflamed Maggie. She made an attempt to respond, but the only sound that came out was a pitiful whimper. She wanted him to kiss her, wanted to feel that firm, masculine mouth on hers as he devoured her lips. But she sensed he was using every ounce of strength he possessed to hold on to his control. There was no disguising the state of arousal he was in. Could she push him over the edge?

Did she want to?

The answer was yes.

Wicked Desire by Tory Richards

EBook formats ISBN: 978-1-60313-325-8
Trade paperback ISBN: 978-1-60313-324-1
to buy link:

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Tango in the Night by KC Kendricks

Tango in the Night
contemporary gay romance available now at

Jubal Graham is back on the job after a shooter took the life of his long-time partner, and sent him into a coma followed by months of rehab. Determined to have justice, Jubal is focused on finding a killer, not a new romantic entanglement. Ellis Banks, with his smoldering blue eyes and denim-clad swagger is a distraction Jubal can’t afford – or ignore.

Ellis Banks came to Philadelphia to bust a drug operation; one that connects to the same case agency legend Kentuckian Jubal Graham is working. Ellis finds himself drawn to Jubal, but Jubal holds him off. Sure that Jubal is interested, even though he wears his slain lover’s ring, Ellis mounts a determined siege.

Jubal’s surprise at having a suitor develops into a growing affection for Ellis, one clouded with old fears. Fate ripped one lover from his arms, and now Ellis is in the line of fire. Jubal’s courage can protect Ellis, but is it powerful enough to love him?


Once upon a time, I’d been as hot-headed and prone to temper as he was. The years hadn’t burned it out of me, but I did manage it better. A fast-moving lone figure came into sight. I put the window down and slowed.

“Ellis, come get in the car.”

“What for? You don’t want me. You want Cliff.” He stopped and stepped in the street. “Well, guess what, Jubal? It’s too late for that. He’s gone. You don’t owe him a thing, and if you did, there’s no way to repay it.” He started walking again.

I hit the gas, pulled the Jeep across his path, and jumped out, wincing as needles shot up my leg.

“Stop right there. I told you Cliff isn’t your competition. I meant that, Ellis. Damn it! Don’t confuse me trying to…to…do what I need to do to get on with my life with clinging to a memory.” I fisted my hands in the soft leather of his jacket and shook him.

Ellis grabbed my jacket lapels and shook me back. “You put your life on the line for closure? Of what? Your coffin?” He pried my hands open and stepped back. “I want a lover, not a memory.”

“Why do you think I don’t want the same thing?” I reached for him again. He didn’t back up as I rested my hands on his hips. “Ellis, it’s been one helluva long day. I’m beat. Please come home.”

His dark eyes glittered, reflecting the streetlights. He almost—almost—reached for me, but he let his arms drop to his sides. It trickled into my consciousness I’d referred to my house as his home. I wanted it to be his home, but maybe he wasn’t ready to think in those terms.

Ellis looked away, shaking his head. “I don’t know what to do, man. I’m in this weird place with you.”

I took a half step closer. He didn’t move, so I slipped my hands inside his jacket, to his waist, where the heat of his body came through his thin shirt and traveled up my arms.

“Ellis. Love, look at me.”

He shook his head again as his breathing became ragged. “Where do I fit in, Jubal?”

“How do you want to fit it? You fill a lot of dark corners inside me. I want you in my life, if you want it, too. But for you, that means accepting everything about me, even my past.”

And for me, it meant taking a leap of faith with a man whose past I knew very little about. I thought he’d be worth it.

“I’m nothing but the rebound for you.”

“Give me a little more credit than that. There is no ‘rebound’ from the life I had. There’s only forward. With you if you’ll have me.”

“I don’t know.”

My heart fractured a bit, but I thought I understood. I pulled him to me, our chests pressed together. His head rested against mine as his arms held me tightly.

“Let me take you to your apartment, Ellis. We need to get some sleep. We’re both too worn out to stand here and make decisions. I have reports to finish tomorrow, and so do you.”

“No. I can get home on my own, Jubal. I’m a big boy.”

It hurt to release him, to lose his heat, his scent, and not know if I’d ever touch him again. I let him go. He finally looked at me, and I saw the uncertainty in him. I squeezed his hand.

“I know, Ellis. Me, too.”

ISBN-13: 978-1-60272-621-5

Also available:
Netting Neptune
Taming Triton
Poseidon's Pleasure

KC Kendricks
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Saturday, May 15, 2010

Rituals by Kiki Howell

Rituals is available in ebook here:

Or, you can purchase it in Print in The Healing Spell & Other Stories Anthology here:

After a Wiccan ritual opens her eyes to her old friend, Maddie’s first week together with Ryan, goes by in a blur of knots and ropes. Creative in their endeavors, they tie each other to everything from the coffee table to the kitchen cabinets. Neither the sash of her silk robe nor the curly ribbon on a present is left unused as a device of sensual torture. Together, they find the freedom they seek in bondage. But, when Maddie’s controlling ex-husband returns hell-bent on taking her back, will Ryan and Maddie be bound by the past or become tied to each other?


“Are you quite agreeable to beginning, Maddie?” Ryan asked in the formal pedagogy of days gone by. She knew he had done so for her benefit with his coy smile and the come-hither voice he adopted when he wanted to lighten the mood.While she was grateful for his attempts, he had not succeeded in easing her nerves. As she looked to the silver cord hanging in loops over his outstretched hand, she did her best to smile reassuringly back at him to return the favor. Behind the facade, her thoughts flowed like turbulent seas as she tried to maneuver through the waves of her doubts.

Still, she was more than ready.A restless sort of eager, she earnestly desired the proposed outcome of this new experience. It was as if she had been preparing herself for this moment for the last few years. To prove it, she nodded her head at him and dropped the white silk cape he had given her.

As he looked down over her revealed figure, she disregarded the fact that this was the first time he had seen her naked. She had chosen to participate in tonight’s rite, thought it out and drafted herself to take the final step she needed to freedom. Ignoring the way her body trembled within his field of vision, she averted her gaze to the breathtaking yards of material embroidered with delicate flowers lying in a shimmering puddle at her feet. It reflected the candles all around them making her feel for a moment she was a goddess on display at the altar.

"Kneel before me," he requested. Yet, within his sovereign voice, she detected a slight tremor. Maddie was obedient, lowering herself with as much grace as she was capable of. Upon kneeling, she had caught a glimpse of how his jeans curved over a quite impressive outline, and she couldn't get past the bulging part of his anatomy presently at her eye level. Although she was trying to focus in on his words, as she understood the vital importance of comprehending his directions, she was distracted even after he tugged closed his own robe to cover himself. Pondering for just a moment if her present state of undress had something to do with the extent of his forming erection, she reveled in the sweetness of the stroke to her ego. She had needed the boost. Looking up at Ryan as he spoke about relationships and transformation specifically in the vain of what would transpire tonight, hope filled her. She desired the creation of momentum and healing this rite promised.

Rituals is a really sweet and touching love story. The subject matter is racy (the sex is wild!) and the romance is wonderful. I highly recommend Rituals to those who like romantic fiction with spice!" ~Dawn D. at Manic Readers - Rated 4 out of 5 Stars

"This quick read novella gives readers a delightful look at light bondage. Both Maddie and Ryan are great characters having a great time exploring the new world that has opened up to them. Expect the bedroom scenes to get scorching hot." Romance Book Scene – Rated 4 out of 5 Hearts!

"Ms. Howell tells a good story with a strong plot that keeps the reader interested. Overall, this was a nice read.” ~Rated 4 out of 5 Delightful Divas by Autumn!

"The story in itself is wonderful. I loved the sensuality, passion and heat. I loved the interplay between Maddie and Ryan. Their history seemed to make the heat even steamier.

In conclusion, would I read this author again? Hell, yes. I enjoyed the sex play and passion. Would I buy her books? Hell, yes.” ~Review by Doni at Romance in the Backseat - Rated 4.3 out of 5

Kiki Howell
Author of Magical Erotic Romances
"Kiki’s use of words and descriptions is indescribable and weaves a kind of magic around the reader." ParaNormal Romance Reviews
www (dot) kikihowell (dot) com

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Tangled Roots by Giselle Renarde

Title: Tangled Roots
Author: Giselle Renarde
buy link: http://excessica

Simone is having a bad day. Not only has she broken up with Toy Boy Toby, she’s been fired from her high-powered job! Now, in hopes of raising capital to start a business of her own, Simone must sell the old family cottage. But the lakeside cabin rejuvenates her soul, and her wise neighbour Moses sparks a new flame. Only with the guidance of this tattooed man devoted to healing can Simone overcome humiliation. Passion comes easy, but is this power-hungry businesswoman ready for love of the compassionate variety?


Absolute darkness.

The city never looked like this at night. Never so still, never so serene. Having
forgotten to pack pyjamas, Simone lay naked, spread across the big bed. Though she still felt like berating herself over her actions toward Moses, waves of pleasure overtook her mind, pulsing like the music of a seashell. She closed her eyes.

The call of the loon echoed across the lake. Coooo-eee-ooo-eee-ooo… there
was nothing more hauntingly beautiful. …Eee-oooo-eee-ooo… Dark creatures, dappled like the night sky, they held some mystery, a secret knowledge humans would never
discover. Folding her fingers together, Simone blew into her hand, trying to speak their language. No, she wasn’t doing it right. How did they create that loon call as kids, she and Luc and Girard? There was a gap in her memory.

The pressure in Simone’s ears mounted until her head floated like a balloon.
What was this feeling, like something rising inside her? Like the beat of the drum.
Pounding, but no pain. Then, poof! It was gone. When she opened her eyes, there was
a flash outside the bedroom window. Like a little star exploding. Bolting upright, the cotton sheet fell to her waist. Another flash. Slipping out of bed, Simone crossed the room to get a better look.

Fireflies. Of course! An ephemeral buzz struck her palms, the memory of
catching those phosphorescent critters as a child. Fireflies! It’s amazing how things continue to exist, even after you’ve forgotten about them. The fireflies had been here all these years, only she had left.

And then there was another light. Fire off in the distance, near the water’s edge.
Yes, she could smell it now, that burning wood musk. Like a moth, she was drawn to it.

On the hook behind the bedroom door hung the housecoat her mom always wore: very
Scottish red and black plaid, with a black velour trim. Simone threw it on over her
naked flesh, tying a tight knot around the waist. Out the back door, slipping on a pair of old flip-flops, she was down the hill in flash.

On a log by the water’s edge sat her beautiful neighbour, still in bathing trunks.
Golden skin kissed by the hot orange glow of the flames, the flickering brought his
tattoos to life. They were growing, crawling over his shoulders. God, was he ever a
magnificent specimen!

“Valcourt!” Moses greeted her. “Come, have a seat.”

Blowing guilty breath out through her mouth, Simone let the tension fall from her
shoulders. She joined Moses on the log, the heat from his strong body competing with
the fire for bragging rights. What a beautiful night it was, balmy and mild as it gets at the peak of a Canadian summer. And, God, there was nothing like that campfire smell. Like Pavlov’s dog, Simone drooled for marshmallows.

Overhead, the sky sparkled like a black velvet sheet littered with diamonds. “We
don’t have stars in the city,” Simone sighed. “Some nights, you’re lucky to spot even one.”

“It’s all the pollution from your damned SUV,” Moses poked the bear.

“What’s wrong with my Squidgy?”

“With your what?” He chuckled.

“My vehicle has a name, thank you very much. His name is Squidgy.”

“Tell Squidgy he’s killing the planet, will you?”

“Enough about my car!” Simone said with a smirk.

“Okay,” Moses agreed. “Then we can complain about the light pollution. All
those office towers keep the fluorescents buzzing all night. It’s crazy the way we take things for granted—energy, water, food—like there’s an endless supply.”

Moses closed his eye and took in a deep breath, his chest rising, expanding. As
he exhaled, the tattoos on his shoulders seemed to writhe and twist. If that man wasn’t careful, she’d be all over him.

“Are you…what are they called, like a shaman or something?” Simone played

Moses laughed, his beautiful face to the night sky. “No, not me. I’m just some

“I’m sure you’re much more than ‘just some guy,’” Simone flirted. Nestling her
head against Moses’ shoulder, she made sure her housecoat hung open just enough for
him to get a glimpse at the luscious curves of her breasts.

“Well, okay, yeah. I’m an artist. I work in rock.”

The rumblings of an imaginary bass line vibrated Simone’s core. “Oh?”

“Yeah, my work is a modern take on traditional Anishinaabe rock art. I’ll show
you if you swing by the studio tomorrow.” Moses pointed to the garage space beside
his cabin.

“Yeah, sounds good.”

Moses extended a peace offering. “Candy?” Black liquorice: dark, sweet and delicious.

Giselle Renarde
Canada just got hotter!

Visit me online

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Embrace the Moment by Mahalia Levey

Embrace the Moment
ISBN 978-1-60659-951-8
Buy at:

Naval Aviator Lark Maddox works for the United States Coast Guard. Honor and Integrity are the morals she lives by, yet her heart has been stolen by one under her command.

Master Chief Survival Tech Acer Davidson doesn't believe in love or marriage and has forsworn making any permanent ties. When tragedy occurs, will he seize the opportunity of a lifetime or let the best thing in his life float away on the rippling tide.


0300 Hours-On the coast of Laguna Beach, CA

“This is Ryan Corban for Channel Nine news with a breaking story. At three-thirty this afternoon, a Cessna type plane crashed thirty miles off the Laguna Coast. The craft called in a mayday after being struck by debris on their starboard engine. The Coast Guard was called out and responded by deploying an eighty-seven foot schooner as well as a helicopter…one second please. We’re receiving more information from the reporter on site.”

“We’ve been informed that two of the three passengers have been located. Unfortunately they are not alive. What a traumatic night for Laguna Beach. The occupants of the Cessna plane were two teenagers and a pilot.” He put his fingers on his earpiece to receive incoming information and nodded. “Wait. I have just been informed there are no survivors. The third passenger has been found. Yes, the pilot and two teen students were killed. Confirmation has come through. Resuscitation on one of the teens has failed. Their identities at this time are withheld until family members can be notified. With Channel Nine News, this is Ryan Corban.”

* * * *

1700 Hours-USCG Sector, San Diego

Lieutenant Junior Grade Lark Maddox surveyed her team. “No cigars tonight, fellas. Remember, some we win, some we lose. Anytime a plane crashes the chances of survival decreases. Get your reports completed and get home. As always, let the local police handle the press. If anyone contacts you transfer them to the local authorities. If they prove to be crass direct them to public affairs who will deal with them tomorrow.” Her four team members were wet and appeared exhausted. She turned to the one nearest to her. “McCall, make sure you go get that cut on your head looked at.”

As senior officer, Lark remained in control. Even when coping with difficult issues, she played the part well. Her face remained a stoic façade of impenetrable stone. Being the highest ranking woman on the team, she had to show she wouldn’t break, that she held the same backbone of her male counterparts.

“Done.” Petty Officer Second Class Phoenix McCall slapped the papers onto her desk.

“Dismissed,” she replied curtly and turned toward Seaman Jarius Nelson. “Seaman Nelson, please feel free to use the resources of the base. This rescue being your first loss, no one would think any less of you if you need sickbay or the base therapist. Well done for maintaining your control down there. At times, it’s not easy to do that in the face of things out of our control.” She offered him a rare smile.

“Thank you, ma’am.” He handed her his report. “But I’ll be fine, if it’s all the same.”

Lark took in the wariness of his appearance. He had proven to do well on their team. “Have a good night’s rest.” She watched him grasp the edge of his sailors cap, rolling it with shaky fingers as he walked out of the office.
Lark put her hands behind her back in a relaxed stance while waiting for her last team member to finish with his report. Numerous papers littered her desk. Approaching the piles, she riffled through and placed them in order and began, with quiet resolve, to sign each one.

Everyone processed the success or failure of a rescue in their own fashion. Not every life was saved, and to her surprise, after being assigned for two years to her current rescue team, the losses affected her less each time. She paused to wonder if that was a bad thing, the ability to distance one’s self from the harsh realities of life. Known for being a calculating cold bitch wasn’t the impression she wanted to leave people with.

For more about Mahalia Levey, please visit her website at:

Monday, May 10, 2010

The Senator's Daughter by Debbie Wallace

To Buy Link - http://

Fallen Angel Reviews Recommended Read

Most women kidnapped on the eve of their wedding would be devastated, but not Sophie. She’s thankful for being rescued from marrying a millionaire she doesn’t love. Besides, her abductor is a gorgeous hunk who makes her feel anything but frightened. His masterful touch sends a river of fire through her blood that releases the vixen in her. She surrenders to an afternoon of passion, only to wonder when it’s over, how will she ever be able to leave Brent for the arms of another man?

Brent can’t believe he let Senator Adams talk him into kidnapping his daughter. Now he has a hellion on his hands, who’s as clever as she is beautiful. He tries to convince himself she’s not his type, but every time he touches her he can’t deny the rush of sensation that leads straight to his loins, then to his heart. Soon he begins to question; can he let her go when it’s over?


How in the world did he expect her to sleep with him lying next to her all night? She already felt the heat from their close proximity, reaching up to undo some of the top buttons of her shirt. She fluffed the material against her hot skin, thanking God for the cool air of the fan overhead.

In the end it wasn't enough. As Brent settled into an exhausted sleep, Sophie lay there burning up, listening to his soft snores and undoing yet another button, and another. She tried to inch away from his hot flesh but their handcuffed wrists prevented her from getting very far. She couldn't even roll onto her side, which was how she usually liked to sleep. She stilled for a second before fluffing her shirt again. What had she ever done to deserve this kind of torture?

God, it was like a furnace…

"Will you be still!" Brent grumbled.

"I'm hot!" She whispered, defending herself.

"Well if you'd stopped wiggling you'd cool down. I'm hot too."

This was impossible, Sophie thought, squirming to get into a more comfortable position. She was frightened but more than that, she was aware of his closeness. He had no right, forcing her to sleep with him! He released a snort as she continued to twist and turn.

Her fingertips inadvertently brushed against his muscular thigh. She tried to pretend it didn't happen but that was like trying to pretend she wasn't a woman. Besides, now her fingertips were singed and worse, tingling.

"Damn it!" Brent barked losing control.

"I'm use to sleeping on my side," she said in her defense.

With a deep sigh that sounded more like a grumble of aggravation Brent rolled to his side, turning her with him so that when they were finally settled she was in the scooped out hollow provided by his body, with his arm around her. She gasped at his audacity, trying to scoot away but he yanked her back just as easily. "Now go to sleep!" he snarled against her ear.

Sophie grew stiff as a board, holding her breath, speechless with shock. The intimacy of their position terrified her. Their bare legs were touching from thigh to ankle. In addition, she could definitely feel the soft bulge of Brent's member flush against her buttocks.

Oh dear Lord this was worse than anything she could have imagined! Everything at that moment became intensified. The warmth of his breath against her ear, stirring her hair. The rhythm of his heart as it beat against her back. His large hand resting against her belly, she could feel every one of his fingers.

Not until his soft, steady breathing indicated he'd fallen back to sleep was she able to finally relax. She could forget about cooling down now, she was hotter than ever, but at least she was on her side. Finally, after an agonizing hour of waiting for the unknown, her eyes began to drift shut and she sank into a welcome slumber.

Debbie Wallace
Author of sizzling romances!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

“Damon's Price” by Ali Katz

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Genre: Historical Romance, Red Hots!
ISBN: 978-1-60504-946-5
Length: Novella
Price: 3.50
Publication Date: March 9, 2010
Cover art by Scott Carpenter

For Claudia, love comes late and, perhaps, at too great a price.

Widowhood agrees with thirty-eight-year-old Claudia Sabina. Her husband and father left her wealthy, but her most prized possession is their gift of independence. She enjoys a freedom few women in male-dominated Roman society will ever know.
One of her most valuable assets is Damon, a young Greek slave bequeathed to her by her father. Intelligent, resourceful and educated beyond the norm for even a freeborn Roman citizen, Damon is a man of many talents. It doesn’t hurt that he is also a pleasure to look at.

For months, Damon hides the fact he’s fallen in love with his new mistress. He convinces himself he can be satisfied with her nearness—until the night he walks in on her bath, and his rigid control deserts him. Consequences fail to matter as he offers her full use of talents that, until now, he’s never revealed.

In a moment of weakness, Claudia crosses the line laid down by Roman law and custom, immersing herself in an illegal and dangerous love affair. A choice that threatens both their futures.

Warning: Imagine what you might do with a naked Greek god whose sole purpose is to satisfy your every whim, then keep on imagining. This title contains an abundance of hot, hot, hot M/F loving.


What have I done to myself? The question woke Claudia hours before dawn, robbing her of the deepest, most peaceful sleep she’d experienced in years and giving her no rest since. Her blessed contentment shattered, she could not shove the man from her mind or the memory of his touch from her body.

Still, she’d managed to get most of yesterday’s work off her desk. Only one signature remained. The tablet lay in front of her, but the last three paragraphs of Damon’s carefully worded contract eluded her. The closer the time came for Damon to appear, the more distracted she became. He would have finished his rounds by now. She awaited his arrival with both anticipation and dread. She’d chewed her lower lip raw.
Blaming him would be so easy, and just what she needed to ease her guilt. He had, after all, tempted her. Her mind kept returning to the fact, seeking justification for its mutinous surrender, but reason insisted she claim responsibility. He was a slave—her slave, and bound to do what she bid.

And bid she would, without a doubt. A shiver coursed through her at the memory of what he’d done to her. She had no problem blaming him for making her want more. The idea of using him shamed her a little, yet she could not convince herself that, if he refused her in the future, she wouldn’t insist.

The knock at her door stopped her breath. She considered finding some task for him to do far away from the house—a coward’s temporary solution. But six orders sat on the corner of her desk awaiting his attention.

He rapped again.

She forced herself to breathe.

“Enter.” Claudia picked up the contract and put her mind to those last few clauses.

“Good morning, Era,” he said in a perfectly normal voice that flowed from her ears to her sex, plucking every nerve on the way.

“I’m almost done,” she said without looking at him. “I’ll be with you in a moment. Look these over while you wait, please.” She pushed the stack of orders toward him.
Claudia made three more attempts to understand what she read. If she’d thought anticipating his arrival distracting, his actual presence was ten times so. How could she keep her eyes on her reading when they were constantly drawn to the fall of fabric over his hips and thighs where he stood in front of her?

She watched the movement of his hand as he lifted each tablet a few inches from the table to read. He had beautiful, long-fingered hands, the nails scrubbed and neatly trimmed. Her sex clutched remembering the way those fingers had filled her. A shudder betrayed her.

Damon’s hand trembled when he reached for the next tablet. So, he noticed her scrutiny and was not unaffected as he wanted her to believe. Somehow, the fact eased her mind.

Claudia stopped pretending to read and gathered herself. Why was she so nervous? This was her office, her house, her slave. The time had come to take charge. She looked up, aware of every inch her eyes swept over on their way to his face.

Damon waited for her to speak first.

She needed something, anything, from him to tell her what last night had been to him. If the answer was a job well done, so be it, but this pretense of normalcy disturbed her.

When it became obvious she wouldn’t break the silence, he said, “The wagons are here for the first shipment to Rome. They’ve begun loading. Do you want to come with me this morning when I inspect?”

A surge of annoyance stifled her response. She’d get up and leave before letting him act like nothing had happened between them. “Sit.”
His eyes widened with alarm. “This isn’t a good idea,” he muttered, but he crossed the tiny room and dragged the other chair to the front of the desk. By the time he sat, his good-natured calm had melted to concern.

“I’ve offended you,” he said quietly.

What came before - Rated R Excerpt (

Some Reviews

4 ½ Delightful Divas "Whew! What a tear jerker! Folks, have your hanky ready when you sit down to read Damon’s Price (sic), because you’re definitely going to need it....I absolutely was whisked away from the very first page of this book."~~Dakota, Dark Diva Reviews

"The story left me breathless. Ali's writing is so smooth and fresh. She puts the reader in the bodies of Claudia and Damon in such a way I ended up experiencing the steamy desires each invokes in the other. Oh, Lord, it's hot, sensual and one of the best reads I've had in a while. Want a great book? Be sure and check Ali's Damon's Price out. You won't regret it!" ~~Judith Leger, Fantasy and Contemporary Romance Author

5 Angels - "Damon's Price is a sexy and emotional read. Ali Katz succeeds once more in immersing the reader in the story from the first page, and keeps the tension and interest going. The book's main strength is in its characters-both Claudia and Damon felt real, their emotions raw and believable." ~~Maija, Fallen Angel Reviews

Friday, May 7, 2010

A Questionable Hero by Kiki Howell

How much will an Angel and a Demon sacrifice to find their true destiny together?


Abdamas is a halfing, born of a moral woman but raised in hell by the demon who sired him. All his life he has been proof incarnate of the war between good and evil that exists in every human soul.

Shaebiel is a human angel warrior earning her salvation by fighting demons like Abdamas on earth.

When Abdamas is injured playing unlikely hero Shaebiel takes him to her apartment to heal him. There is both heaven and hell to pay for their actions. As they both fight and surrender to their desires, the conflict around them rages on. However, once heaven offers a deal and hell breaks in to counter, the stakes get higher and higher.

Soon, the true question becomes, how much will they sacrifice of themselves in order to find their true destiny together?

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A divine proclivity to perceive imminent danger made Shaebiel turn in time to glimpse the glinting silver of a demon’s sword, inches from slashing into her flesh. As her body tensed for the pain, a sharp metallic clash rang in her ears, followed by the shrill grate of metal against metal. Two long daggers crossed beside her, and moments later a human form was reduced to smoky ash on the blacktop. To her utter confusion and dismay, when she followed the length of the sword that had saved her, it was held by a demon—a devilish being with magnetic silver eyes.

These eyes, lighter than the inky black of most of his kind, bore into hers, searched hers. As an angel warrior gifted with empathic abilities she could feel lust burning over the rush of his more erratic feelings of fear, confusion and shame. It could have been a minute or an hour they stood there, because time seemed to stand still wrapped in the embrace of this man’s stare. Her angel’s sword of light remained down at her side instead of being jabbed into the cavity of his chest to kill
him. At the same time, he slowly returned his weapon to his side rather than coming for her. They were opposing sides of the war in a shocked stalemate, entranced by each other, out of sync with the natural order of events.

Before she could figure out a plan of action, a sword of light wielded by another angel warrior seared through the demon’s hip. His cry cut through the background noise of the fighting, causing her rapid breathing to pause. He grabbed at the burning flesh and his sooty hair fell over his face. Another angel, seeing the demon who had saved her as an obvious threat, given his proximity, had come to her rescue as well. She stood there frozen as if she had never been trained for such a battle.

Kiki Howell

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Seducing the Sheriff by Marie-Nicole Ryan

Genre: Erotic Historical Western
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Half dressed and going for naked…

Starlight Tyler needs to lose her virginity, as in yesterday. With her mother, a Pinkerton, and a wealthy man she doesn’t love on her tail, there’s only one place to cut their cruel intentions off at the pass—get herself back into the arms of long-lost love Cordero Tate. Pronto.

She never expected to be tripped up by someone else’s past.

Sheriff Cordero Tate is a haunted man on a mission. Come hell or high water, he’ll round up every member of the gang responsible for the deaths of his wife and unborn child…and make damned sure he never puts his heart on the line again. As in never impregnating another woman. One look at Star, though, and all the old feelings come back in a rush. Worse, she’s just as determined to brand him as hers as he is to keep her chaste.

Their exploration of ways around that impasse lead to three nights of unbearable sensual pleasure. Until her past catches up to her…

Warning: This story contains a lot of hard ridin’, some ass kickin’, and a whole lot of lovin’ goin’ on. No doors left unopened.


Copyright © 2009 Marie-Nicole Ryan
All rights reserved — a Samhain Publishing, Ltd. publication
Posted with permission of the author for promotional purposes

Star’s hands shook, but she kept them in front of her so Cord couldn’t tell how much seeing him after four long—damn long—years affected her. He was a man grown all right, in every sense of the word. Four years older than she, he was a good head taller. His craggy face was darkened by the sun, but the warmth of his dark eyes hadn’t changed since the time he teased her at the age of six and dropped a mess of earthworms in her lap in the town’s one-room schoolhouse. And sadly enough at one time, he and her half-brother had been the best of friends.

Now they were on the opposite sides of the law.

More important, this Cord Tate with his double six-shooters was nothing like the lecherous lawyer with sweaty hands and unyielding mouth her mother tried to marry her off to back East. Her mama’s re-entry into polite society and Star was the price. It’d taken Mama four years to find a man with the right setup—respectability, money, social position—who was willing to take an old maid daughter off her hands.

No indeed.

An unfamiliar stirring of emotions hit her from the moment Cord identified himself. While she might’ve had a schoolgirl’s crush before her mother dragged her along to Boston, what she felt now didn’t feel very girlish. Her feminine core clenched at the sight of his long legs and muscular thighs while he cared for his horse before filling his canteen. A man who took good care of his horse would treat his woman with respect, too. But was it respect she wanted?

Never mind what she wanted. She needed a husband and needed one fast before they dispatched someone else to bring her back. And Cordero Tate fit the bill on both accounts.

“I’m glad you came home. Never dreamed you would.” His tone was deep and soft. The richness of it resonated deep within her, turning her into a warm pool of…need? Was there even a word that described how she felt at seeing him again? More than anything she wanted to surrender to impulse and throw her arms around his neck.

Anything to erase her lingering revulsion of Teddy Darwin. She shook her head in an attempt to erase the memories. But none of that emotional stuff mattered. What mattered was keeping to her plan of seducing and marrying Cord as soon as possible. She’d only been home three days. His showing up uninvited and unexpected was an omen. And every minute counted.

She fluttered her lashes. “My mother—”

“How come she let you come back? I would’ve thought with her family’s connections, she’d marry you off to some rich fellow.”

“She tried.” She averted her gaze, remembering how the oh-so-upright Theodore Darwin’s clammy hands felt on her thighs when he tried to force them into her underwear. She shivered again. Barely an hour after her mother informed her she was engaged to the middle-aged lawyer, he’d tried to force himself on her. Randy old goat—had to be forty if he was a day. Still, she bet it’d be the last time he tried to force a woman without her say-so.

Tears sprang to her eyes as she met his gaze. “I ran away.” Twice. “And I’m not going back. You can’t make me.”

His dark gaze softened. “Darlin’, nobody’s gonna make you go back there. You’re home now.”

If only it were that easy.

His strong arms surrounded her. She gave in to his warmth and relaxed in his embrace. Her entire body twitched, and all she cared about was the sandpapery touch of his warm, callused hands caressing her. Quite a contrast to the way old Teddy made her feel. By damn, she’d never let another man make her feel like a cheap whore again.

Cord was her answer. Better than she could’ve ever hoped. And why shouldn’t he marry her? They were in love before she left. Nothing had changed. She could see heat in his gaze. And she’d make him a good wife.

She gazed into his warm brown eyes. “I’m yours, Cord. Why do you think I came back? We were always meant for each other. Make me your woman.”

He dropped his hands and stepped back. His eyes widened, and shock scrawled in uneasy lines across his handsome face. He ran his fingers through his hair, blue-black as a crow’s wing, a gift from his Mexican mother.

“God-amighty, woman. Have you no shame? Is this how decent women in the city talk?”

The heat of embarrassment flushed her entire body and flooded her cheeks until they were so hot they must’ve been fiery red. What was it her mama said? Desperate times called for desperate measures.

She stiffened, scowled and dared him to interrupt. “Seems like making me your woman was exactly what you had in mind the night before my mama jerked me onto that eastbound train. Guess you’ve changed your mind.” She whirled and ran for the house.

“Hold on!”

She reached the door first, but he clapped a hand on her shoulder and whipped her around to face him. “Lot of water under that bridge. You got no idea.”

Tears threatening to spill down her cheeks, she glared at him. A burst of fury and a mixture of fear drew her innards into knots. Her heart thundered loud as cattle stampeding headlong toward a sheer cliff. “No idea? You’re the one with no idea. You could’ve claimed me then. Stopped mama from taking me away. If you’d just stepped up and said the word, I’d have been yours these last four years.”

“What and let you pass up the great life you were supposed to have back East? Your ma said—”

“What’d she say?” Star clenched her fists, but at the same time a curl of hope flickered in her belly. “Did she actually stop you…?”

“Yeah, she did. Said I was selfish to keep you here in this backwater. Said I didn’t really love you ’cause I was too young and stupid to know the difference between a lady and the half-Mex son of a rancher.”

“My mama?” Star straightened her spine and hissed, “In spite of her family connections, we were treated like poor relations. So she tried to barter me off to the highest bidder like a prize heifer. It was her big plan to regain entrance into polite society. I was supposed to marry this despicable man…a lawyer…and he was old.” In spite of her best efforts to remain in control, the last came out as a wail.

She rested her head on his chest and sniffed. Against her ear, his heart pounded almost as loud as hers. “I didn’t know she talked to you. All I did know was that you didn’t so much as come to the train station to say good-bye.” She paused and gazed into his eyes. “I cried all the way to North Carolina until she threatened to slap me silly if I didn’t stop.”

Gently Cord nudged up her chin until her gaze met his. “Darlin’, I didn’t think I deserved someone as sweet as you.” He dipped his head and kissed her full on the lips. His mouth was warm and tender, nothing like the lawyer’s. Cord’s every touch felt so right. Her body grew heavy with desire. Her knees weakened until she thought she might faint. His tongue swept inside her mouth, and his hands splayed down her back until he cupped her bottom and pulled her close to his hard cock.

Her body grew rigid. She tried to pull away. So, he wanted her, too. But she needed more than a quick roll in the hay…although turning down his overtures didn’t have a lot of appeal at the moment. After all, she’d come home to trap him into marriage. It was the only way to keep her mother and old Teddy Darwin at bay.

If she were safely married, this time whoever Darwin sent after her would have no choice but to return to Boston empty-handed.

“So…you want to be my woman?” His tone was raspy and breathless, his breath hot on her neck. “I can’t marry you.”

“You can’t? But you have to. I-I need more.” What the Hades was the matter with him? What had she done wrong? Dammit. His hard member was pressing into her belly. She hadn’t done anything wrong…yet.

He scowled down at her and adjusted his crotch. “You need more than this, darlin’?”

She scowled up at him. “Yes, dang it. I’m talking something more serious than the size of your…your Johnson.”

Marie-Nicole Ryan

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Taming the Cougar by Vonna Harper

Deep in the canyons of northern Arizona, animal psychic Kai Tallon senses someone–or something–watching her, and wonders if the legends are true. This is the land of the Tocho–a pride of half man/half cougars borne of the Navajo–and rumored to possess unearthly masculine powers.

As night falls, Kai knows sleep will elude her, for her body is thrumming with sexual energy. But once she surrenders to the erotic sensations sweeping through her, she discovers a pleasure so breathtaking it can only be a intense it can only be teasing, she knows she isn’t alone.

Something was out there. Something she'd never encountered in her twenty-eight years of life. Something with energy beyond anything she'd ever expected. Something that turned her restless, half-scared, and achingly alive.

She wanted to jump to her feet and run until her lungs screamed and her feet were shredded, until intellect and nerve spilled out of her. Left with nothing except exhaustion and clawing thirst, she wouldn't care about anything except creature comforts. She'd sleep the sleep of the dead, dreamless and peaceful.

But was that what she wanted, she asked as heat speared her. From the first time she'd touched an animal and comprehended that she could sense its emotion and see its world, her life had been dictated by powerful forces. Whether she fought her sight or embraced it didn't matter. The gift and curse was woven throughout her, part of her pulse and breathing. Was this newborn heat, this awareness of her body that different?

"I don't know," she moaned to the faint breeze and, hopefully, her father's spirit. "I don't know what's happening."

Now that she'd admitted how out of control she felt, facing the unknown seemed a little easier although maybe the swift-approaching night was responsible. Before long, darkness would assure there'd be no visual distractions which meant she'd be pulled into herself, knotted into a tight, pulsing ball.

Determined to give the sensations a name, she tried to draw comparisons with what else she'd experienced in life. Fortunately, this primal energy had nothing in common with the tearing grief and anger that had engulfed her the day six months ago at her father's death.

A long-time seeker of thrills, she'd parasailed at the Oregon coast on a day when the winds fought each other, steered a battered race car into a second place finish at a county track, and spent knuckle-whitening hours in a canoe caught in Colorado River class five rapids. Those adventures had dried her throat and loosened her bowels and made her feel acutely alive which had been her goal when she'd taken them on. In contrast this—

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Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Ondine by Giselle Renarde

Novice painter Evelyn Fon gets more than she bargained for after receiving her first big commission for the brand new Drinkwater Hotel. Who would have guessed Gavin Drinkwater, heir to the family fortune, would take such a keen personal interest in her? But when Evelyn arrives at the hotel's elegant Gala Celebration, she soon discovers she's there as a date for Gavin Drinkwater Senior, her crush's elitist--albeit incredibly handsome--father!

In attempting to escape the party--not to mention her embarrassment--Evelyn stumbles upon Gavin's mother Imelda, who reveals the 20-year-old tale of her torrid affair with a young ballerina named Ondine. But, as Evelyn soon finds out from the Drinkwater patriarch, there's more deception to her love story than even Imelda is aware. Can Evelyn uncover the truths buried in the past and reunite Gavin's estranged free-loving parents? Perhaps her role in the family drama will even earn her a place in the bashful heir's heart...

An erotic journey through the worlds of ballet, art, and passionate liaisons, Ondine is a sensual exploration of pansexual free love wrapped in a boy-meets-girl tale of mix-ups and misunderstandings.

As I entered the sumptuous ballroom, I felt like a princess. An adroit server like the two at the door wouldn’t let me pass without taking a flute of champagne. Curtsying, I thanked the costumed man. I’m sure I looked ridiculous, but I didn’t care. It was all so exciting! As I gazed across the bustling ballroom, I was transported to another place, another era. France of the eighteenth century? History never was my strong suit.

Velvet drapery the colour of my dress adorned windows running floor to ceiling. Where guests were dancing, the marble floors were bare, but there were patterned carpets in dark red, navy blue and gold tones on the floor near the giant windows. Each carpet seemed to demarcate a seating area, and every seating area was crowned with lavish French furnishings. The ceiling supported a pair of crystal chandeliers glinting with every colour of the rainbow. The splendour of the surroundings had me feeling drunk before even taking my first sip of champagne.

The giant canvases hanging on the salon-red walls were not my work, but I could hardly feel slighted about that. After all, my paintings were barely figural at the best of times, and abstraction didn’t correspond with the elegance of this environment. No, the art on these walls could easily have arrived straight from Versailles. There were portraits of stern monarchs and mythic allegories, and even a copy of the well-known Marie Antoinette and her Children by Elisabeth Vigée-Lebrun, one of the many uncelebrated female artists of her time. How sad women’s contributions to the world of art had gone so unacknowledged over time. Hopefully that would change, and my own name would live on even after I was gone.

As I shifted my gaze to the organic aspect of my surroundings, it dawned on me that my sister’s satin seemed no better than a housedress set against the lavish gowns the ladies wore. Rather than feeling embarrassed by the relative simplicity of my attire, I felt quite content to observe the scene around me without being part of it. In the nooks by the windows, women waved lace fans about their faces and teased their partners with them. Ladies in extensive crinolines and their gentleman friends showed off some intricate footwork on the ballroom floor.

“What sort of dance are they doing?” I asked one of the wig-wearing servers.

“They are dancing a quadrille, Madame,” he informed me in a sober voice that reminded me of Stephen Fry’s Jeeves.

Where would they have learned such an outdated dance?

“The rich are very different from you and me,” I accidentally said out loud.

“Quite so,” replied the server as he bowed and took his leave.

Tracing the outskirts of the ballroom, I soon found myself standing behind a man wearing a yellow and blue silk brocade suit and a tall white wig. He looked just like a portrait of the King of France. I wasn’t sure which King of France, but in my mind they all look the same. At first I wondered if he was one of the servers, since none of the other male guests seemed to be wearing wigs, but his manner of addressing the group surrounding him suggested he was very much more than a mere server.

“It came to me in a dream,” said the King of France, who spoke with an English accent. “I saw this ballroom just as it is now and I thought, Eureka! I knew this would be the perfect hook for my little hotel. The Versailles Ballroom, I call it. All of our banquets will be catered with French haute cuisine by servers in period costume. There will be live baroque music, fancy dress and dancing. Have you ever before seen a sight such as this? Ladies in the finest garments of all time dancing a formal quadrille! It is simply exquisite.”

That’s when I retrieved a piece of information that must have fallen behind my filing cabinet of memories. On the inside of my invitation, I remembered seeing the words, fancy dress ball. Fancy dress was a British term. It meant “costume party.” I don’t how I managed not to pick up on that. I wasn’t supposed to wear a fancy dress to the ball, I was supposed a costume! A French period costume, by the looks of it. Why didn’t I read my invitation more carefully? Stupid, stupid, stupid…

“So, if I understand you correctly, this ballroom is to be a sort of costumed amusement park for the dangerously wealthy. Is that it?” a short balding man with a voice recorder asked the king.

“No, no, no. You’ve got it all wrong, man!” the King of France replied. “I am single-handedly reviving capital-C Culture in this country. Many would agree culture— the right sort of culture—has been lost for some time, replaced by that bastard child, multiculture, and by naïve artists with neither training nor talent. I, of course, would argue high culture never existed in this country in the first place.”

My head pounded as I listened to that snob extol the virtues of fine European art. He was a bizarre mix of the worst of two stereotypes: English classism and French arrogance. It was a brave blend in Ottawa—a city split unofficially but nonetheless noticeably along language lines. The English would view his adoption of all things
French as abandonment. The French would see it as cultural appropriation. Only someone with money and connections could get away with the stance this privileged man took.

When nobody within the circle of listeners spoke up, I couldn’t keep myself from voicing my opinions. I stepped through the crowd and sneered, “Are you kidding me? Canada has a thriving high arts community. I’m what you might call a naïve painter and my background is obviously not European, but you know what? My art is hanging on the walls of this extravagant hotel. My sister Sharon performs with the Ottawa Sinfonietta, and a lot of groups like theirs offer free or pay-what-you-can concerts. That way it’s not just the uber-rich who can attend. It’s the only way I could ever afford to see live classical music. Plus, the international press is saying the Canadian Opera’s new house one of the best in the world. Not just that, but when they opened the new opera house, they simulcast the gala performance right in front of City Hall so everybody could watch it for free.”

A fight or flight reaction raced through my veins as the king turned around to face me. I thought I was going to have a heart attack. After my brief tirade I couldn’t even bring myself to look this man in the eye. Instead, I stared at the ruffle of lace at the neck of the silky white shirt. He spoke self-righteously, like his word was final. “That’s precisely the problem I’m talking about! Is nothing sacred? Everybody has access to all levels of culture nowadays. Even homeless people can see the Opera! Historically, that was not so.”

Edmond the driver had advised me to pretend not to be offended by the ignorant things rich people say. I guess I wasn’t very good at following instructions. I replied, “Yes, but those homeless people would still have had to pay upwards of, what, $100 per ticket to actually set foot inside the Opera House? And if you want to speak historically, plenty of peasants attended performances of Shakespeare’s plays back in his day. I think they had to stand, but at least tickets were cheap enough for everyone to go.” I wasn’t certain my argument was on firm footing. High School English class was a long time ago, and I might have misremembered my facts. “Anyway, that’s not even the point. The point is that capital-C Culture, as you call it, should not be relegated to the rich. The Opera and the Symphony and every other kind of art should be accessible to the masses.”

“And yet, Ms Fon,” the King replied, “the prices of your own artistic creations contradict everything you’ve just said.”

My jaw literally dropped as I stared dim-wittedly at the man’s silk brocade outfit. How did the King of France know me?

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Sunday, May 2, 2010

No One But You by KC Kendricks

May 2, 2010

No One But You
Contemporary m/m romance available at

Lovers Stacy James and Levi Wright keep their relationship hot and spicy by enjoying the little things in life. Levi welcomes Stacy home from a business trip by delighting his partner with a quick trick in the men’s room of a local pool hall. An offhand comment by a stranger cools Stacy’s ardor, and sets in motion a chain reaction that rocks the very foundation of Levi’s world. He’s never cheated on Stacy, but Stacy has sudden doubts.

On his own, Levi is tested in his discoveries – about Stacy, their relationship, and about the kind of man he wants to be. One thing he knows for certain. He’s not losing Stacy over a careless whisper that isn’t true, but will the only man he’ll ever love forgive his angry words?

Stacy made the worst mistake of his life telling his lover to find another place to sleep. Levi might be younger, but he’s a man, with a man’s pride. Stacy draws on all his experience to walk a road full of detours and pitfalls to meet Levi halfway, and bring him home. Because for Stacy, there’s no one but Levi.

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EXCERPT - from Levi's point of view

In the mood for fun, I bent over the table and wiggled my ass. The man at the bar smiled and sauntered over.

The slow-moving ceiling fan wafted his scent to me. I breathed in his spicy fragrance, rich with the mystery and lure of a male whose strength equaled mine. Dark imagines of him beneath me teased the corners of my mind. In the dusky light, his ruttish blue gaze burned a path to my groin.
“Can I buy you a beer?”

I straightened. We stood eye-to-eye. “Sure. I’d love a beer.”

He nodded and motioned to the bartender, who set a filled frosty mug on the bar within easy reach. I thanked him.

“You’re welcome. You’re pretty good.”

I thanked him again. “I see you have your stick with you. I bet you’re pretty good, too.”


I flashed my sexiest grin at him. “It’s just this feeling I have.”
His eyes darkened, smoky now as he watched me. I conceded the table to my teammate and picked up my beer. The man trailed his fingers down my arm. “What do you say? Let’s blow this place and find someplace quiet.”

I kept my gaze locked with his. “I’m flattered, but I’m in a committed relationship.”

“Hmm. So he doesn’t allow you to have any fun?”

“Heck, no. I’m on a very tight leash.”

He snorted. “That’s too bad. A gorgeous young stud like you should have a loose rein.”

I sneaked a downward look at his bulging zipper. He was way ahead of himself.
Unfortunately, seeing the size of the loaded gun he carried had quite an effect on me. He saw me check him out. A slow, knowing smile spread across his face. I moved closer to him, into the aura of warmth that surrounded him. I brushed my knuckles against his powerful-looking thigh and lowered my voice.

“How loose do you think I should be?”

“Very. I’ll pay for the room, if you say yes.”

Heart pounding, cock swelling, I leaned over the pool table to make another shot.

“You have the best ass I’ve ever seen, young man.”

I wiggled it at him again and made the shot, nine ball in the center pocket. Straightening, I glanced over my shoulder at him with lazy, half-closed eyes. I made another shot as he tightened his cue.

Without waiting for me to give him permission, he moved the cue ball, lined up the most difficult shot on the table—and made it.

“Okay, old man, you’ve got my attention.”

He looked up at me, amusement sparkling in his deep-set eyes. “I’ve had that since you walked in the door.”

“Don’t flatter yourself.” I sipped my beer as he dropped another ball in the pocket.

He straightened from the shot and ran the tip of his stick up the inside of my thigh to my balls. It was a bold move. I placed my cue in the rack, knowing my friends wouldn’t let it walk out the door with anyone, and gestured at the table.

“I gotta take a leak. You can finish the table.” I walked away before he had the chance to answer.

The restroom was empty, not surprising considering the small crowd. I unzipped. Behind me, the door opened, then closed, the lock driving home a split second before the room went dark. Strong fingers grasped my hips, tugging my jeans down.

Heat radiated off his body as his feverish lips touched the back of my neck. I turned and wrapped my arms around him. He clutched me in return, his pelvis hard against mine, our tense thighs locked together as our harsh breathing echoed off the tiled walls. My lips found his and I thrust my tongue into the depths of his mouth. The sharp edge of the counter bit into my ass. I didn’t care. I unsnapped his pants and pushed them off his hips, closing my fingers around his engorged shaft.

His hands yanked my shirt up and my pants the rest of the way down. My cock, full to bursting, sprang into his waiting hand. He rolled my foreskin back, just the way I liked. Wet, warm lips sucked on my left nipple, then slid lower until his mouth was on my cock, taking me in. I buried my fingers in his hair and ground my bush to his face.

He knew what he was about, holding my shaft lightly between his index finger and thumb as the tip of his tongue teased my glans. The heat coiled in my belly, burning to break free into his mouth. I moaned when he released me. In the blink of an eye, Stacy spun me around, and bent me over the counter.

ISBN 978-1-60272-545-4

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One of the Top Ten Bestsellers at
Amber Allure November and December 2008
ISBN 978-1-60272-422-8

KC Kendricks
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