La Famiglia by Deanna Wadsworth – Exclusive Excerpt

Long and Short Reviews welcomes Deana Wadsworth, who is celebrating the release of La Famiglia, the latest book in her Men of Gilead series.

I’m happy to be at LASR again with my new release and latest Men of Gilead book LA FAMIGLIA. As you can see from the covers of the books so for, doggies play an important role in the series. I brought an excerpt featuring the adorable but wild Jasper from LA FAMIGLIA.
Enjoy!

Forrester Giordano comes from a huge, nosy Italian family, and with their homophobic jokes and slurs, he’s decided to stay in the closet. He finds respite in his bookstore in the quaint village of Gilead—where he has a huge crush on one of his customers, Kyle Benson.

Kyle is determined to live his dreams, and though life isn’t easy being deaf, one by one he’s making them come true. He’s scored a great job practicing law, bought a cute bungalow where he can finally have a big flower garden, and he has a dog he loves, Jasper. Now he just needs one thing to complete his happiness: a family of his own to make up for the one he never had.
Forrester and Kyle’s relationship starts off hot and heavy, and neither man can deny the depth of their connection. When Forrester’s little brother gets mixed up with their heroin-dealing cousin and his mother falls ill, Forrester has a decision to make—maybe the hardest of his life. For the first time, he’s found a man worth coming out for.

Unfortunately nothing ever goes according to plan with la famiglia.

Enjoy an Exclusive Excerpt

Forrester woke to a strange snoring sound, disoriented. The silken sheets beneath his body felt nice but unfamiliar. His ass was tender, but he was warm all over. It took a moment for his brain to catch up to his environment.

You’re at Kyle’s.

He stretched languidly in the bed, his feet reaching for the coolness below. They’d left the light on, and he blinked several times, then rolled over with a dopey grin to wake up the snoring Kyle for another round.

Instead, he was nose-to-nose with the bug-eyed Jasper.

The instant the dog noticed him, he snorted and lunged, head-butting him in the face as he licked him.

“Hey!” He jerked out of the dog’s reach, but the insane little animal jumped on his chest and licked him right on the mouth. Then he ricocheted away.

“You little twerp,” he growled, whipping dog drool off his face. But Jasper had already leaped from the bed and dashed out of the room.

“Jasper,” Kyle hissed in reprimand from the doorway. “Don’t wake him up.”

“Too late.” Forrester sat up in the bed and squinted.

Kyle entered the room naked, tiptoeing as though trying not to wake Forrester. When he spied him already awake, he gave him an apologetic smile. “Sorry, he was whining downstairs.”

Jasper jumped on the bed, the carcass of a squeaky toy in his mouth. “You know what time it is, ya crazy dog?”

“Jasper.” Kyle lunged for his dog, the action making his penis waggle. But the little terrier leaped out of his grasp, and Kyle landed flat on the bed. Jasper raced around the room like it was playtime. Kyle groaned, and Forrester laughed at the picture they made.

Jasper jumped back up on the bed and crouched down, jutting his nubby tail in the air. The little canine’s energy seemed endless.

“Man, you are one hyper dog,” he observed. “What do you feed him, Kyle? Caffeine?”

“No, all Bostons are like that.” Kyle sat back on his haunches on the center of the bed, watching his dog shake the gutted toy madly. “Mom and I used to show them. Jasper’s grandma, Tanika, was the last dog we showed. After Mom died, I found out one of Tanika’s pups was having her last litter, so that’s how I got Jasper. His markings weren’t show-perfect, so they had him fixed. I kinda wish he wasn’t, so I could carry on our dogs’ lineage.”

The longing to maintain a connection with his lost parent tore at Forrester’s heartstrings. “C’mere.” He held out his arms for Kyle to cuddle up.

With a grateful smile, Kyle slipped beneath the covers and tucked under his arm. They waited for Jasper to reach the conclusion bedtime had arrived. After rooting up the blankets and a pillow, he curled into a ball, and let out a snorting sigh.

“I hope you don’t mind, Jasper sleeps in here with me. I only leave him in his kennel when I’m at work.” Kyle shifted to face Forrester. “He’s my ears when I sleep.”

“Really?”

He nodded. “Yes, he wakes me up if he hears something. Someone at the door, noises. Or even if my phone or my alarm clock goes off.”

“Like a hearing-ear dog? Is there such a thing?”

“Yes, there is,” Kyle assured him, sitting up and removing his processor. He took the top piece off the curved part and placed it in a glass bowl on his nightstand. Then he looked back at Forrester. “He’s not formally trained, but Jasper knows when I can and can’t hear, and he helps me.”

Forrester studied the wild little pooch, impressed.

“I think he can hear when my CI is working,” Kyle said. “But then again, dogs are incredibly intuitive. We had another dog like that when I was little. Frieda would bump me when someone tried to get my attention. She even snapped at people who got too close to me when my Mom wasn’t looking or if I was sleeping.”

“So Jasper might bite me if I molest you in your sleep?”

He raised his brow in a warning expression. “He just might.”

“I promise to be on my best behavior.”

Kyle cocked his head to the side, expression unreadable, but he said nothing.

It suddenly struck Forrester how much trust Kyle placed in him, inviting him to stay when he was at his most vulnerable. It touched Forrester, and he did not take the gesture lightly.

Leaning over, he cupped Kyle’s face in both of his hands. Kyle flinched, but then Forrester kissed him slow and deep. When he withdrew, Kyle was smiling dreamily.

“Thank you for trusting me. Letting me stay. You don’t have to worry,” Forrester assured him. “Jasper and I will both be your ears.”

Those hazel eyes widened. Then Kyle nodded, reached behind him, and clicked off the light.

About the Author: Deanna Wadsworth might be a bestselling erotica author, but she leads a pretty vanilla life in Ohio with her wonderful husband and a couple adorable cocker spaniels. She has been spinning tales and penning stories since childhood, and her first erotic novella was published in 2010. She has served multiple board positions for different RWA chapters, including President of the Rainbow Romance Writers in 2017. When she isn’t writing books or brainstorming with friends, you can find her making people gorgeous in a beauty salon. An avid reader, she also loves gardening, cooking, music, and dancing. Often she can be seen hanging out on the sandbar in the muddy Maumee River or chilling with her hubby and a cocktail in their basement bar. In between all that fun, Deanna cherishes the quiet times when she can let her wildly active imagination have the full run of her mind. Her fascination with people and the interworkings of their relationships have always inspired her to write romance with spice and love without boundaries.

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You can also find her young adult alter ego, K.D. Worth FacebookTwitter

Buy Deanna’s books at Dreamspinner Press, Decadent Publishing or at any reputable eBook seller like Amazon

Winter Blogfest: Deanna Wadsworth

This post is part of Long and Short Reviews’ Winter Blogfest. Leave a comment for a chance to win one ecopy of my first holiday erotic romance, SECRET SANTA.

A Cookie Recipe and a Giveaway!

December is such a hectic time of year for me. As a professional hair stylist and nail tech, my day job is twice the workload as usual. So I don’t do the whole Christmas cookie extravaganza. I don’t even get as fancy cookie making as Daniel and Clay do in my latest book WELCOME HOME, SOLDIER. Thanksgiving is more my jam, I host it every year and pick up a lot of stragglers who don’t have family plans. I leave Christmas to the friends with kids.

But one thing I always do is make is my great-grandmother’s Scotch shortbread. Have you ever had shortbread? It’s kind of like a snowball but creamier. Probably because of the powdered sugar. I’m not much of a baker so I won’t pretend to know the science of why these cookies melt in your mouth, but they do. And this recipe is crazy easy! So from my home to yours, here is the recipe:

Scotch Shortbread

  1. Cream 1 cup butter and ¾ cup powdered sugar until light and fluffy
  2. Stir in 2 ½ cup flour
  3. Press into 8×8 pan
  4. Bake 300 for 25-30 min
  5. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and cut warm

I hope you try this recipe. Perhaps my family’s shortbread can become a holiday tradition for your family too. Enjoy this excerpt from WELCOME HOME, SOLDIER, one of the thirty holiday romances in the Dreamspinner Holiday Advent collection.

WELCOME HOME, SOLDIER

Clay and Daniel fell in love as enlisted men during Desert Shield, but Don’t Ask Don’t Tell meant they had to keep it secret. After Clay’s convoy was ambushed, PTSD changed him, and their relationship ended in a horrible fight on Christmas Eve.

Twenty-five years later, they’ve reconnected on Facebook, and Clay finds out Daniel will be alone on Christmas Eve. Impulsively, he sets out for Daniel’s hometown of Gilead, Ohio—where Daniel is now the mayor—to surprise him with a visit. But a blizzard strikes and Clay wrecks his car. All hope of seeing Daniel is lost—until a mysterious old man named Nick offers Clay a ride. The weight of past wounds and the scars of war might make their reunion awkward, but Clay is willing to take the risk to win back his lost love. Despite a lifetime of disappointing holidays, Clay hopes that this soldier is finally coming home for Christmas

EXCERPT

“Want some coffee?” Daniel said to avoid blurting, Damn the years treated you well!

“Sure, I’m freezing.”

“I can’t believe you didn’t know about the storm. It’s been all over the news.”

Clay grinned. “You know me. I never think things through first.”

He chuckled. “Since you’re here for the evening, do you want to help me make cookies? It’s sort of a cliché Christmas thing to do, but….”

“Sure.” The grin splitting Clay’s face was electric, and Daniel’s belly fluttered.

Daniel had not forgotten Clay’s toothy grin and those dimples. Back during Desert Shield, the dusting of a youthful beard had hidden his dimples, much to Daniel’s chagrin. But now Clay was clean-shaven, his cheeks a little pink from the elements. The long lean line of his throat, his solid Adam’s apple that bobbed when he talked—all exposed for Daniel’s viewing pleasure. He’d always had a thing for Clay’s neck. Weird, but he couldn’t help it. Clay had stayed in great shape too, unlike the twenty pounds Daniel needed to lose.

Making cookies isn’t helping that! And you were probably going to eat them all yourself!

Well, George would’ve gotten his share. But still….

And here Clay was, looking like some sort of body-building Daddy.

Once Daniel got Clay a mug of coffee to warm up, he busied himself placing the fresh cookies on a cooling rack.

“What? No cutouts?” Clay said, startling Daniel with how close he stood.

He hadn’t realized Clay had come up beside him. Swallowing hard, he glanced over his shoulder and up. Clay was bigger, wider than he used to be. And damn, the gray hair looked good on him.

Daniel managed to sound calm, though Clay’s nearness made his heart race and his skin warm. “Nah, a cookie’s a cookie.”

“But it’s Christmas, Danny. Shouldn’t we make Santa or candy-cane cookies?”

“I just wanted cookies.” Call me Danny again, please! “No need for theatrics.”

Theatrics? C’mon, you gotta have cookie cutters around here somewhere.” The hopeful glint in his expression tugged at Daniel’s heart.

“I don’t know. Maybe.”

“Come on, Danny.”

And then, just like old times, Clay took over, tossing Daniel’s practical plan out the window and making everything more complicated.

But definitely more fun.

With a mismatched collection of cookie cutters, and Clay armed with the rolling pin and leaving a flour mess all over the counters and floor—which George happily licked up—soon they had a tray of hearts, moons, and trees ready to go into the oven. Clay insisted Daniel add food coloring to the frosting, one bowl of green and another of red, which turned out pink. Though he didn’t think it necessary, it was impossible to say no to Clay.

Especially with those dimples and that sexy throat, and the way Clay called him Danny with his now-rougher voice.

You’re hopeless!

Thanks for hosting me and if you share a comment (or better yet a cookie recipe of your own) then you will be entered to win my first Christmas story: SECRET SANTA—Just who was it that came down Adam’s chimney? Find out in this superhot holiday story!

Clay and Daniel fell in love as enlisted men during Desert Shield, but Don’t Ask Don’t Tell meant they had to keep it secret. After Clay’s convoy was ambushed, PTSD changed him, and their relationship ended in a horrible fight on Christmas Eve.
Twenty-five years later, they’ve reconnected on Facebook, and Clay finds out Daniel will be alone on Christmas Eve. Impulsively, he sets out for Daniel’s hometown of Gilead, Ohio—where Daniel is now the mayor—to surprise him with a visit. But a blizzard strikes and Clay wrecks his car. All hope of seeing Daniel is lost—until a mysterious old man named Nick offers Clay a ride. The weight of past wounds and the scars of war might make their reunion awkward, but Clay is willing to take the risk to win back his lost love. Despite a lifetime of disappointing holidays, Clay hopes that this soldier is finally coming home for Christmas.

About the Author: Deanna Wadsworth might be a bestselling erotica author, but she leads a pretty vanilla life in Ohio with her wonderful husband and a couple adorable cocker spaniels. She has been spinning tales and penning stories since childhood, and her first erotic novella was published in 2010. She has served multiple board positions at her local RWA chapter and is the current President-elect 2017 for Rainbow Romance Writers of America. When she isn’t writing books or brainstorming with friends, you can find her making people gorgeous in a beauty salon. She loves music and dancing, and can often be seen hanging out on the sandbar in the muddy Maumee River or chilling with her hubby and a cocktail in their basement bar. In between all that fun, Deanna cherishes the quiet times when she can let her wildly active imagination have the full run of her mind. Her fascination with people and the interworkings of their relationships have always inspired her to write romance with spice and love without boundaries.

Website l Facebook l Twitter

Buy the book at Dreamspinner Press.

Jingle Bell Blog Fest: Deanna Wadsworth



Click here and tell us how long Deanna has been married for a chance to win a  $50 Amazon or Barnes and Noble gift certificate.



A Kiss at Midnight

A kiss at midnight is a favorite way for most to ring in the New Year. The Ancient Roman festival of Saturnalia is where it began, not that it’s a surprise. Those naughty Romans! I always give my hubby a smooch, if we remember to look at the clock, LOL. Some of my New Year’s Eve parties have a Romanesque feel (((nudge-nudge, wink-wink))) and until hubby put the TV in the basement, we have been known to look up at the clock and, whoops! Its 12:17 and we missed the countdown! Darn champagne doesn’t mix well with tequila shooters!

But back on topic, have you ever just randomly kissed the first person you see?

I must admit I have not.

My friends probably wouldn’t appreciate me kissing their husbands. And my single male friends? Eeew! I could lips lock with a girlfriend but that’s so Britney Spears. And I HATE Britney.

Old folklore says you should kiss the first person you see and depending on how important they are to you, the kiss sets the tone for the year. In other words, see someone you hate at the clock chimes midnight you have to kiss them and you will have bad luck.

My suggestion?

Surround yourself with people you love around 11:57 just in case it’s true!

I think I will stick to my personal kissing ritual of locking lips with my hubby. I’ve been happily married 14 years, so why screw with a good thing?

But if you are looking to change your luck or add a twist to your New Year’s Eve party, try kissing the first person you see.

Being Roman is sooo in this year! LOL

Maybe the New Year will be full of adventure and good fortune because you took a risk. It could be a chance to smooch your super, hot neighbor, too,. I’m feeling a naughty story idea coming on….

So balm up those lips, brush and floss, avoid garlic onions and get smooching at midnight this year!

Just avoid being around creepy folk so you don’t have to kiss them and mess up your year. You wouldn’t want to take the risk that those old superstitions might be based in truth!

Each month Decadent features a book where all publisher profits go to the American Cancer Society Relay for Life.

“Secret Santa” is the Read for a Cure book in December. During this month I am also adding to that by donating 50 cents per book sold. My personal goal is to raise $500. I would love for you to help me raise money for this great cause! Thanks and Happy Holidays! ~Deanna

Deanna leads a pretty vanilla life in Ohio but her fascination with all things taboo and bizarre find their way into her writings. She spends her days writing and her nights as a caped superhero fighting crime with her sidekick Beer Man…no not really. She’s actually pretty boring. You can usually find her with her hubby and three dogs watching TV or hanging in their killer basement bar.