Her Wild Hero by Paige Tyler – Guest Blog and Giveaway

Long and Short Reviews welcomes Paige Tyler, whose newest book Her Wild Hero releases next month. Enter the Rafflecopter for a complete set of X-Ops series.

NOTE: Sourcebooks Casablanca just launched a free serialized newsletter that delivers sections of one of our titles right to your inbox each morning. The first title they are sending out is Paige Tyler’s Her Secret Agent, the prequel to her X-Ops series. Sign up here.

Today we are excited to sit down with Declan MacBride and Kendra Carlsen, the heroes of Paige Tyler’s May release Her Wild Hero! The latest title in Tyler’s hot X-Ops series finds Declan and Kendra deep in the Costa Rican jungle fighting for their lives. Kendra and Declan are here to give us a peek at their jungle adventures and a survival tip for would-be X-Op agents!

“The worst part was the rain. Most of it didn’t make it through the thick jungle canopy, but water constantly dripped off every branch and leaf. Within two days, she didn’t have a single piece of clothing that was completely dry, and sleeping turned into more of an exercise in finding a dry spot than in getting any actual rest.”

Kendra’s Survival Tip: When you’re in the jungle, you’re going to get wet. Complain if you want but, you’re still going to get wet.

perf5.000x8.000.inddDepartment of Covert Operations Training Officer Kendra Carlsen has been begging her boss to let her go into the field for years. When he finally agrees to send her along on a training exercise in Costa Rica, she’s thrilled.

Bear-shifter Declan MacBride, on the other hand, is anything but pleased. He’s been crushing on Kendra since he started working at the DOC seven years ago. Spending two weeks in the same jungle with her is putting a serious strain on him.

When the team gets ambushed, Kendra and Declan are forced to depend on each other. But the bear-shifter soon discovers that fighting bloodthirsty enemies isn’t nearly as hard as fighting his attraction to the beautiful woman he’ll do anything to protect.

About the Author:Paige Tyler is the USA Today bestselling author of sexy, romantic fiction. She and her very own military hero (also known as her husband) live on the beautiful Florida coast with their adorable fur baby (also known as their dog). Paige graduated with a degree in education, but decided to pursue her passion and write books about hunky alpha males and the kick-butt heroines who fall in love with them. Visit her at www.paigetylertheauthor.com.

Buy the book at Amazon, Apple, BAM, Barnes and Noble, Chapters, Indiebound, or Kobo.

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Interview and Giveaway: Jo Richardson

Long and Short Reviews welcomes Jo Richardson, whose latest book Cookie Cutter was recently released. Leave a comment for a chance to win a $5 Amazon gift card plus a digital copy of Cookie Cutter.

Cookie Cutter is about a single mom who struggles to deal with her new status, a new job, an ex-husband who still wants to control her, a teenaged daughter her own issues, all while supporting the community she’s come to know and care about. She thinks she’s got it all together, but really, one slight pull of the thread, and it could all crumble around her. She’s come to grips with the fact that this is her life until Carter Blackwood moves in across the street. That’s when the fun starts. That’s when Iris’s fun starts.

Jo actually wanted to be an artist when she grew up, originally taking art as her major in college, with English as a minor. Life took her in a different direction (and major) but she never stopped be creative.

“I’m glad I finally took the plunge in getting something published,” she admitted. “It’s pretty awesome to see a story you’ve written in book form.”

Jo found her favorite author by accident one day while browsing in an aisle at Barnes and Noble – Jim Butcher.

“I was looking (desperately) for something new to read, and this woman noticed that I was there a while. She came right up to me and handed me one of his books. She said, just do it. So I did. And I’ve been hooked ever since,” Jo told me. “I love him because he writes about a wizard (but not the Harry Potter kind) who is forever having one bad day after another. He’s snarky, sarcastic, a hard ass, and he gets up every time he’s knocked down. He makes some bad decisions but he is always trying to rectify those mistakes. He taught me that when writing a story, you don’t always have to have perfect grammar, perfect characters, or perfect endings, you simply have to have a great story to tell.”

For Jo, in her writing, her characters come first. She will usually have an idea on the type of person she wants to write about. She starts to see and understand who they are, what makes them tick, what’s happened to them in the past? Then she starts working on the story she want to surround them with.

When it comes to titles, she likes to do play on words and wants the title to mean multiple things with regards to the story. For example Cookie Cutter doesn’t just reflect the type of neighborhood Iris lives in, it refers to her love of baking, and it also, in some ways, resembles how her day to day life has become. Or at least how she perceives it.

I asked Jo to describe her writing space.

“It’s pretty neat and organized. I’ve got a desk set up in the front room of my house, a laptop, windows so I can remind myself there’s life going on outside, and a notebook to jot ideas down into. There’s usually a black lab hanging out at my feet and two kitties who pop in and out of the area throughout the day, reminding me to feed and love them.”

It’s hard for her to find time to write, though, since she works full time, has a husband, and two daughters with school and sports going on.

“Sometimes it’s difficult to write when I’m hit with some inspiration for a scene or need to finish up my edits,” she admitted. “I make the time though, because I love what I do, and even though it might take me a year to finish a story, I’m going to finish the story.”

She writes early morning, before work, during lunch, and late afternoons when everyone is home from school, but still working on homework.

“Aside from that, we have a lot things going on at any given moment. Sometimes, if my husband happens to take the girls somewhere and I’m left alone (gasp) I take full advantage of the time I’m given.”

She was surprised to discover how much additional work is involved in getting books published, and then how much work is involved in marketing after publication.

“It’s a never ending circle of making time to write, while pimping yourself (something I am personally horrible at) and making sure you search for the write audience to pimp yourself to,” she said.

“Ebook or print?” I asked, “And why?”

“This is an interesting question. I’m not sure if it’s referenced to my own books or any books I’ve read. For my stuff, if I had to choose? Print. Because I love holding something in my hands that I’ve written, and putting it up on my shelf and remembering I DID THAT. For most books that I read, I like eBooks because it’s so easy, and convenient, but there are books that I buy in print that I’ve read in eBook. Because when the story is that special to me, I want it on my shelf.”

Finally, I asked, “If you could spend a day with anyone from history, dead or alive, who would it be, and what would you do? What would you ask them?”

“This might have been a different answer a year ago, but today, I would pick Robin Williams. And I would ask him to please reconsider his decision to end his life. I would make him see how much he impacted so many people by leaving us too soon. I still get choked up when I think about it. He has been a role model for me since the very first time I saw him on Happy Days. He’s made me laugh through good times and bad, and I just wish he understood how important he was. It breaks my heart that he felt so alone in the end.”

4_24 coverfinalcovercookiecutter copyIris Alden and Carter Blackwood couldn’t be more different. Change-averse Iris likes her life neat and organized, while Carter’s itchy feet mean he doesn’t plan to stay in the same place for long.

When Carter moves into the house across the street from Iris, to renovate it, she fights the disruption it causes in her life. Before long, though, it’s not simply the house Carter’s rebuilding, but Iris’s heart, too.

About the Author:4_24 jo richardson BIO200x230 A movie fanatic, a writer of stories, a lover of life.

Jo grew up in Maryland with four siblings, three parents and an endless number of cousins within the vicinity – but it was too cold up North for this thin blooded girl. So today, she lives in Florida with her two girls and a husband that shares her same sense of humor and basic take on life as we know it.

Life is too short to put dreams on the back burner.

Jo tells contemporary stories with romance, humor, the supernatural, the paranormal, suspense, mystery, action and anything else she can think up.

In 2012, she wrote Cursed be the Wicked, a character driven, paranormal mystery romance that was picked up by Soul Mate Publishing and released in March of 2014. Jo has also written a couple of short stories as well, and her most recent full length novel, Cookie Cutter, released through Little Bird Publishing in March of 2015, broke into the top 100 contemporary romantic fiction category on Amazon during its first week of publication.

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Buy the book at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, or iBooks.

Red Tide Rising by Allie Gail – Spotlight and Giveaway

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This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Allie will be awarding a $25 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Watch the video:

MediaKit_BookCover_RedTideRisingAges 18+. Contains strong language, explicit sex and elements of horror. This book is the final installment in the Immortal Touch trilogy.

*****
What good is immortality when every moment is agony?

The vampire Ash has returned from his watery grave, proving that death is merely a minor inconvenience. Picking up where he left off? That might not be as easy. Because someone else is vying for Sami’s attention – the last person he ever would have expected.

Fulfilling her desire for immortality seems the surest route to winning her favor. But for Sami, this gift will come at a terrible price. One simple lie of omission is all it takes to send her spiraling into a terminal state of madness. And as the last remnants of her sanity slip away, Ash can no longer deny that her maniacal behavior is putting them all at risk. His perfect angel has become a perfect liability.

But can he find it in his heart to destroy her?

RTR - Teaser 1

Enjoy an excerpt:

Almost simultaneously they blinked, the two heads bobbing about in disoriented confusion as they struggled to assimilate. Straightening, Ash took a step back and spread his arms open with a haughty smile.

“Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the freakshow! I am your host and master of ceremonies. Tickets are nonrefundable and the rules here are simple. There are only two, so please give me your undivided attention as I will not, I repeat, will not be going over these instructions twice. Listen up, here we go. Rule number one. Do. Not. Scream. First motherfucker in here that wigs out on me gets their gray matter painted all over the walls. Unless you want this place redecorated with your brains, I suggest you take ol’ Sparky’s advice here and – how’d you put it? Oh, yeah. Keep. It. Down.

“Rule number two. I am in charge here. In case you illiterate hillbilly dumbasses don’t know what that means, I’ll clarify. You will do what I say, when I say it, without asking why. These rules are non-negotiable and subject to change at any time, without any warning, in accordance with my whim. Do we have any questions from the audience?”

Sami watched, enthralled, as the startled couple exchanged panicky looks. Once again almost synchronously, their bulging eyes returned to the gun being waved around in front of their faces. Neither of them seemed to know what to do.

The woman was the first to hazard a question. Bringing a shaking hand to her chest, she coughed twice before saying in a croaky voice, “P-please…I need a Xanax. I think I’m having a panic attack.”

“A panic attack? Really?” Asher’s free hand flew to his mouth in exaggerated dismay. “Oh, my. Now that is unfortunate. Regrettably, management won’t allow us to stop the ride and let you off once it’s started. However, we will have some nice parting gifts for you. May I have your name, please?”

“My…name?” Her cheeks grew even more wan if that was possible. She looked dangerously close to face-planting into the floor.

“Yes. Your name. What people call you. Comes above the street address on your mail. Generally the first line on your birth certificate. Any of that ring a bell?”

“Brandy,” she whispered before coughing again.

“What was that you were asking for, Brandy? A Xanax?”

“Yes…please. They’re in…in my purse. Over there.”

“My dear, you don’t need medication. What you need is a transfusion. Request denied. Next?”

At her side, Kemper seemed to suddenly spring to life. “What’s going on here?” he snapped indignantly. “Who are you people?”

“I apologize, but due to union rules we are only permitted to answer one question at a time. Kindly select just one.”

Not only baffled but clearly getting pissed off, Kemper gritted his teeth so that his lower lip protruded in a way that reminded Sami of Slingblade. “I said…who ARE you people?”

“Oh! That’s right! You don’t even know how to address me yet, do you? Please pardon the oversight. Let me introduce myself. I am known as Alpha to the fortunate, Grim Reaper to the unfortunate, and Total Prick to everyone else. You can simply call me Sir. To my left is my lovely assistant Samara. Take a bow, gorgeous.”

Smiling brightly, she gave a dainty little curtsey. “How do you do?”

About the Author:MediaKit_AuthorPhoto_RedTideRisingAllie fell in love with books from the moment she was issued her very first Sally, Dick and Jane reader. Born and raised in Alabama, she now resides in the sunny panhandle of Florida with her own blue-eyed Prince Charming and two fat, obnoxious cats. When she’s not busy obsessing over the lexicon of her latest project, she can usually be found watching B-movie horror (the cheesier, the better!), reading or playing online computer games while indulging her unhealthy Pepsi addiction.

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Buy the book at Amazon US or Amazon UK.

RTR - Playlist
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What the Duke Wants by Amy Quinton – Spotlight and Giveaway

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MediaKit_CommenterPrizeThis post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Amy Quinton will be awarding a heart shaped enamel, kiln fired copper charm on a leather corded necklace (US ONLY) to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour (designed and made by Keri Sereika at Pink Lemonade). Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

MediaKit_BookCover_WhatTheDukeWantsUpstanding duke desperately seeks accident-prone wife from trade…

England 1814: Miss Grace (ha!) Radclyffe is an oftentimes hilariously clumsy, 20-year-old orphan biding her time living with her uncle until she is old enough to come into her small inheritance. Much to her aunt’s chagrin, she isn’t: reserved (not with her shocking! tendency to befriend the servants), sophisticated (highly overrated), or graceful (she once flung her dinner into a duke’s face). But she is: practical and in love… maybe… perhaps… possibly…

The Duke of Stonebridge is an agent for the Crown with a tragic past. His father died mysteriously when he was 12 years old amid speculation that the old duke was ‘involved’ with another man. He must restore his family name, but on the eve of his engagement to the perfect debutante, he meets his betrothed’s cousin, and his world is turned inside out… No matter, he is always: logical (men who follow their hearts are foolish) and reserved (his private life is nobody’s business but his own). And he isn’t: impulsive or in love… maybe… perhaps… possibly…

Can he have what he wants and restore his name? Can she trust him to be the man she needs?

Enjoy an excerpt:

A knowledgeable lady understands that, typically, the best way to make a good first impression is not to fall bottom first into a puddle of mud. Alas, Grace Radclyffe, with her inclination towards unfortunate mishaps, found this knowledge to be generally useless in the reality of her everyday life.

Therefore, despite the uncomfortable feeling of wetness seeping through her gown and the faint-though-nearby sound of dripping mud, she did what any sensible lady of good upbringing would do in less than ideal circumstances. She cursed. With conviction.
“Bloody hell. Not again.”

So maybe she didn’t say that. But it was something she occasionally thought in her mind, though only in her mind.

In actuality, she chuckled lightheartedly (because it’s always best to set yourself and any potential rescuers at ease in awkward situations) and graciously procured the proffered handkerchief dangling over her left shoulder. Then, after clearing the mud from her face so she could actually see and with cheeks tinged only slightly from embarrassment (because, really, that kerchief hadn’t been dangling over her shoulder on its own), she peered up to thank her would-be rescuer and

Gasped. Out loud.

For staring down at her with one eyebrow lifted in question, were a pair of eyes—emerald green eyes to be more precise. The most deeply penetrating emerald green eyes she had ever seen in all of her near twenty-one years.

About the Author: MediaKit_AuthorPhoto_WhatTheDukeWantsAmy Quinton is an author and full time mom living in Summerville, SC. She enjoys writing (and reading!) sexy, historical romances. She lives with her English husband, two boys, and two cats. In her spare time, she likes to go camping, hiking, and canoeing/kayaking… And did she mention reading? When she’s not reading, cleaning, or traveling, she likes to make jewelry, sew, knit, and crochet (Yay for Ravelry!).

Amy has lived in or around the Charleston, SC, area her entire life. When she’s not home, at the beach (weather permitting), or camping in and around the Great Smoky Mountains (Check out Mile High Campground and Devils Fork State Park!), she loves to visit the United Kingdom. She loves the history, the culture, and the people – hence her love for Scottish and Regency Romances. She especially loves to visit the Isle of Skye – in the Highlands of Scotland; where the scenery is both rugged and breathtaking.

Amy graduated from the College of Charleston, a liberal arts college located in beautiful, historic Charleston, SC. She worked 10 years in the computer industry as a software designer before becoming a full time mom and now, a full time novelist. Contact her at AmyQuintonAuthor@gmail.com

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Buy the digital book at LS Books, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Google Play, or iBooks.

Buy the print book at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or CreateSpace.

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Shadowed Origins by Shyla Wolff – Exclusive Excerpt and Giveaway

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This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Shyla will be awarding $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

4_20 BookCover_ShadowedOriginsThe road to freedom is rarely an easy journey.

Following a lifetime of captivity and torture, fate tosses Kyley into a world of freedom and opportunities, danger and espionage. During her inspirational journey, discovery of life’s offerings shores up her determination to conquer the fears that keep her from exploring a world where romance is more than a fantasy. Her continued hard-won freedom hinges on the abilities of the paranormal group that rescued her. Always looking over her shoulder, she knows Roth must reacquire her to complete his plan for mass annihilation and anarchy.

Taylor’s telekinesis and special-ops training granted him seamless passage to work with Kenner’s paranormal unit. When he rescues a young waif from the clutches of her psychopathic guardian, he’s unprepared for the emotional backlash created by their connection.

The knowledge that her emotional baggage includes years of abuse dictates he help her conquer her triggers and fears. Aware she’s not encountered a kind touch, much less any expression of passion, he represses his own desires in order to teach her that not all physical contact includes pain. He longs to free her adventurous streak and inspire her to achieve emotional as well as physical confidence.

Since being adopted by her psychic warriors as a kid from the streets, Kiera’s never doubted her place in life or the direction of her path. Her unusual upbringing included weapons training, unique fighting skills, and how to maximize her paranormal abilities. After pulling Carlin, a computer prodigy, from death’s grasp, she learns you don’t always get to choose whom you love. Her destiny is twofold. Protect Carlin from the monster who wants to destroy the USA and find her mate—a man who will save her life, more than once.

A chance meeting between Kiera and Kyley sets off a chain of events they couldn’t prepare for and might not survive. Can the girls work together and prevent Roth from destroying the ones they love?

Enjoy an exclusive excerpt:

To make matters worse, he held her now while the river’s filth and bacteria bathed her wounds. The extent of her acute injuries weren’t severe. Yet years of enduring Roth’s degradation etched her body with crisscross scars.

Despite the dark chaos swirling in his mind, her body pressed against him provoked his animalistic response. He couldn’t stop a groan from escaping.

“Okay, um, Taylor?”

“Yeah?”

“You doin all right?”

Hell no I’m not. You’re killing me, sweetheart. “Yeah, we’ll get through this and be in a warm car shortly.”

“Um okay, I just thought you’d want to take your cell phone out of your jeans and stick it in your shirt pocket. If it gets wet it’ll be ruined, and it’s kinda jabbing me.”

Hells Bells. Now what?

“Actually, I can’t get to it without losing my balance. It’ll be all right.” This freezing cold water will kill it. “I’m sure I can get another.”

As he spoke, the horse stopped walking and started swimming. Cold water swirled up over their laps. “Damn, this water’s cold.” Thank God.

Soon, her fingers would prune in response to their predicament, as would his twin boys.

Kyley shivered and huddled deeper into the warmth he offered. Warm breath caressed the skin at the base of his throat when she turned her face into his neck. His heart made a valiant attempt to remember what a normal beat resembled. It failed.

Don’t do that! I’m not made of stone. He groaned. “Kyley.”

“You okay, Taylor? Am I too heavy against you?” As if sympathetic to his cause, she tried to lean forward to give him more space. The result seated her tight bottom more firmly against his pain.

He took one hand off her hip and covered his mouth. The painful moan reverberated through his body. The cold water should’ve started boiling.

About the Author: 4_20 AuthorPhoto_ShadowedOriginsLife teaches us many lessons. One of the most important ones Shyla’s learned is to take the time to enjoy family and friends. Our circumstances change on a daily basis. However small the differences may seem, they add up over time. Through a lifetime of various trials and tribulations, she’s discovered the enjoyment of sharing her stories with those that would relish participating in the journey of extaordinary people through their everyday lives.

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Buy the book at Extasy Books.

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Triple Play Curse by Lori Ryan – Q&A and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Lori will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Who is your favorite author and why?

Oh, I have so many that I love for so many different reasons. When I want sexy, fast paced, intense military romance, I go for Toni Anderson or Kaylea Cross. When I need funny, small town that makes me feel good, I go for Jill Shalvis or Terri Osburn. If I want someone to whisk me away to another world, I grab a Bev Petersen and check out the scenes behind the world of race horsing or a Robyn Peterman so I can visit the fantastical places she creates in her mind.

Tell us something about your newest release that is NOT in the blurb.

The hero in book one is based on the ever-sexy Nomar Garciaparra! I love this man!

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Are you working on anything at the present you would like to tell us about?

I’m currently working on a new book in my Sutton Capital Series that involves a sexy, but somewhat awkward computer geek and a former Navy SEAL. The heroine is actually cracking me up. I love the way she has no internal filter when it comes to him. She just says whatever comes to mind!

What is the hardest part about writing for you?

Well, with three kids ages five and under, time is my biggest obstacle right now! But, besides that, I often struggle if I don’t really know my characters. I have to let them sort of play around in my head for a while. I need to listen in on their conversations and see what they like and don’t like and get an idea for their sense of humor or lack thereof. Then, I can really sit down and write!

What do you like to do when you are not writing?

Well, with a two month old, all I do is nurse, change diapers, and try to catch up on my sleep!

Do you hear from your readers much? What do they say?

Yes! And I love it. I’m still amazed every time someone reaches out to me; at my first book conference, I tried to convince everyone who approached me that they were thinking of the wrong Lori. I kept thinking, “Oh, they mean Lori Foster or Lexi Ryan.” I’ve gotten to the point now where I accept the compliments a bit more graciously and don’t try to tell them they have the wrong author now, but it still floors and humbles me every time. If you ever wonder if an author wants to hear from you or cares what you think, they do! We really, really do!

What did you want to be when you grew up?

Wonder Woman.

What is your most embarrassing moment?

Oh, that is sooooooo not ever getting put down on paper.

The Triple Play Curse
Every member of the Strikers, San Francisco’s professional baseball team, knows about the Triple Play Curse. When one Striker falls in love and gets either married or engaged during the season, two more will fall for a total of three. And, whenever the curse is in play, the team suffers for it. More errors and injuries, lost pennant runs, you name it. No one wants to trigger the curse.

Game Changer (Book One):

Shortstop Rafe Wilson has his routines down to a science. How he ties his shoes, what shirt to wear under his jersey, which foot touches the field first, and how to enter the batter’s box. It works for him. The proof is in his stats. No question; the routine works. Until it doesn’t. When Rafe is left scrambling to figure out what went wrong, he quickly finds the newest addition to his pregame routine. A kiss. And, not just any kiss. Ashlyn Daniels’ kiss to be exact. But, can he convince Ashlyn to be part of his arsenal of “superstitions” that keep his game going? Or will the pregame kiss trigger an even worse superstition? The Triple Play Curse.

Game Maker (Book Two):

Pitcher Aiden Kyle knows the Triple Play Curse has the ability to mess with his life and with his team’s performance. And, now that the curse has been triggered, Aiden also knows he has to do all he can to avoid being its next victim. And that means strippers and hand lotion in the shower for the rest of the season for him. Until Lily Dupree whirls into his world with a crash that puts a kink in his plan. If Aiden can find a way to help Lily and get her out of his life, he just might avoid being the next victim of the curse.

Game Clincher (Book Three):

After two of his teammates fall prey to the curse, Gage Collier realizes he’s got worse things to worry about than the power of the curse alone. He’s got his mother to fear, and the woman is on a mission. When a columnist spills the beans that the curse is in play and there’s only one victim left to be had, Gage’s mother spins a web designed to trap him into being its third victim and give her the grandbabies she’s been wanting. Though the bait she sets is tempting, Gage has no interest in falling in love. With his mother strategizing against him, Gage probably doesn’t stand a chance, but he’ll go down fighting before he takes this hit.

Enjoy an excerpt from Game Changer, Book One

Ashlyn couldn’t believe how nervous she felt, standing in one of the tunnels beneath the baseball field, waiting where the security guard had told her to wait for Rafe. The guard stood at the end of the tunnel, his gaze averted, though she knew he was watching her from the corner of his eye. She wondered how often he’d had to escort a player’s—well this was awkward, wasn’t it? What was she? Not a girlfriend. But, that’s probably what the guard would assume. The guard would probably assume Rafe wanted to kiss his girlfriend before the game. He certainly wasn’t likely to guess Rafe wanted to kiss his good luck charm before the game. A good luck charm he’d cut a deal with to be here.

She’d been relieved to see she wasn’t seated with the wives and girlfriends behind home plate. That would be weird. What would she have said to them? How would she introduce herself? Rafe must have anticipated that she’d feel uncomfortable there and had gotten her a ticket that was every bit as good as the wives and girlfriends’ section, but was just behind the team dugout.

A door opened and Rafe jogged down the deserted tunnel toward her, nodding to the guard as he passed him. Ashlyn couldn’t help but notice the raw power he displayed in his uniform—arms pushing at the edges of his sleeves, thighs filling out the tight pants with muscles that made her mouth water. His hair fell onto his forehead in a way that should have said boyish charm, but on him, it said something more along the lines of lick me.

The ease with which he jogged toward her, completely comfortable and in charge, was sexy as sin. That was her single thought as he approached. Just sexy as sin. He pulled up short in front of her.

“Hi.” His voice was low and quiet, as he leaned into her.

Ashlyn realized she had no idea what they would do. In Anna’s kitchen, the kiss had just kind of happened. There hadn’t been time for her to be nervous or edgy, which was the way she felt now. But, here, in the ballpark tunnels, it was awkward for a split second. And, then, suddenly it wasn’t. Suddenly, Rafe was grinning at her as he cupped the back of her head with one hand, pulling her hip toward him with the other. Her whole body pressed to his and his mouth lowered, capturing hers in a kiss that curled her toes. And, nothing was awkward or uncomfortable about it. It was incredible. And, all too short.

He pulled back and looked her in the eyes. “I’ll see you after the game, Ashlyn.”

And, that was it. He was jogging away and her legs were jelly. Before she knew it, the guard was clearing his throat. She followed him up to the stands where she took her seat and proceeded to watch one of Rafe’s best games ever. Only, her mind was still stuck on the way her lips tingled after that kiss, and she squirmed in her seat every time she looked at him out on the field.

About the Author: 4_20 lori ryan smaller1Lori Ryan is a NY Times and USA Today bestselling author who writes contemporary romance with a twist of suspense. Her books range from sweetheart to steamy in heat level (for sweeter, read the Evers, TX series.)

She lives with an extremely understanding husband, three wonderful children, two mostly well-behaved dogs, and a lone little cat in Austin, Texas. It’s a bit of a zoo, but she wouldn’t change a thing.

Lori published her first novel in April of 2013 and has fallen in love with writing. She is the author of the Sutton Capital Series, the Evers, Texas Series, and will be putting out several novellas with baseball player heroes in Bella Andre’s Kindle World, Game For Love, in late 2014. She loves to connect with her readers. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter or subscribe to her blog.

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Buy Game Changer at Amazon; Game Maker at Amazon, and Game Clincher at Amazon.

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Which Montgomery Brother is Right for You? by Samantha Chase – Guest Blog and Giveaway

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Take a quiz to find out which Montgomery Brother is right for you. Enter the Rafflecopter at the end of the post to win a Samantha Chase romance book bundle + $50 gift card.

Which Montgomery Brother Is Right For You? With Author Samantha Chase

With plenty of Montgomery Brother books on shelves now (and more coming your way soon) bestselling author Samantha Chase invites you to take this quiz to find out which Montgomery man is right for you.

1. What is your ideal hero’s idea of a perfect date?

a) Wandering the aisles of IKEA – if you don’t break down and start yelling at each other, then you know it is meant to be!

b) Locking yourself in your office to work. Who has time for fancy dates?!?!

c) A pizza picnic at the local arboretum. Ten points to the one who can guess the most species of plants and flowers!

d) Bungee jumping followed by a long, hot soak in a hot tub. The both can provide an adrenaline rush!

2. Which flavor of ice cream do you associate with your guy?

a) Neapolitan because there are just so many different sides to this man.

b) Coffee Mocha Fudge because he is strong and intense and can stay up…all night long.

c) Rocky Road because loving him is a journey with ups and down, but definitely worth it!

d) Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough because he is amazingly sweet and indulges your every whim.

3. Where would your perfect man take you on vacation?

a) An isolated ski chalet, including a snow storm that would keep you two alone for days.

b) New York City – plenty to do there, both business and pleasure.

c) A super-private beach resort where you can feel like you’re the only ones there, complete with candlelit dinners and dancing in the moonlight.

d) A nature walk in the woods, a pampering day at the spa, whale watching … it really doesn’t matter to him, as long as you can be together.

4. Your man’s best quality is:

a) His nurturing nature. Once you get past his gruff exterior, there’s nothing he wouldn’t do for you.

b) Rock solid work ethic.

c) Independence. He knows who he is and doesn’t let anyone push him around.

d) Deep down loyalty to everyone he cares about.

5. His best physical feature is:

a) His devastatingly strong shoulders – he’s got the body of an athlete.

b) His smile – wicked or sweet, one smile can melt your heart.

c) His hands – he really knows how to use them!

d) His kind, soulful eyes that see the real you.

6. A romantic gesture that he plans just for you is…

a) Having the band play only slow songs so he can continue to dance with you in his arms.

b) Buying you tickets to your very favorite sporting event.

c) Planning a surprise engagement party!

d) Sweeping you off your feet (literally!) to convince you that he loves you and wants you to stay – forever.

***

If you chose mostly ‘A’s, then Lucas Montgomery from Wait for Me is your soul mate. To the world, Lucas seems like a loner, but deep down he’s not. He cares fiercely about the people in his life and there’s nothing he wouldn’t do for them. He may come off as grouchy, but don’t let his growling get to you because this just hides his big heart. Lucas is not afraid to apologize and admit when he’s wrong and, in the end, he’ll do anything to prove how much he loves you.

If you chose mostly ‘B’s, then you will not be able to take your eyes off of the delicious Jason Montgomery from Trust in Me. Confident, level-headed, and seemingly all about business, Jason is a man of action. He likes to take control of almost any situation and prefers things to go his way. But all this aside, he’s considerate of those around him and pays close attention to details – a person’s likes and dislikes – and incorporates them into the relationship. Whether it’s business or pleasure, Jason is a man who takes notes and remembers exactly what it is that will mean the most to you.

If you chose mostly ‘C’s, then James Montgomery from Return to You is the hero of your dreams. James is a very hands-on type of man. He enjoys working with his hands and his love language is primarily all about the touching. He puts his heart and soul into everything he does – he loves deeply and hurts just as much. His pride and his need for privacy may get in the way at times, but the lucky woman in his life will know that she is everything to him because he loves so completely.

If you chose mostly ‘D’s, Meant for You’s Ethan Reed will have you melting like butter. While he may not be a Montgomery, he has been in the family for years as a best friend and confidant. There is nothing boring about Ethan! The woman in his life had better enjoy a well-rounded lifestyle because Ethan offers it all – romance, adventure, passion. He knows his limitations and his sense of loyalty to the people that mean the most to him may have him hesitating in going after what it is that he truly wants, but in the end, he’ll make it worth the wait!

Return To You

James Montgomery has achieved everything he’d hoped for in life…except marrying the girl of his dreams. After a terrible accident, Selena Ainsley left ten years ago. She took his heart with her and she’s never coming back. But it’s becoming harder and harder for him to forget their precious time together, and James can’t help but wonder what he would do if they could ever meet again.

Buy the book at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or iBooks.

Meant For You

Summer Montgomery wants to be taken seriously almost as much as she wants her brother’s best friend, Ethan. But with a long resume of seemingly random career choices and a protective brother on watch, those things are nothing more than pipe dreams…

Ethan Reed would like nothing more than to live by his own rules. Not wanting to disappoint his best friend Zach, or any of the Montgomerys, Ethan’s had to push his long-denied feelings for Summer aside. But it only takes one night away from watchful eyes to make impossible dreams come true…

Buy the book at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or iBooks.

Wait For Me / Trust In Me Duo

Wait for Me

Former NFL superstar Lucas Montgomery is perfectly fine in his self-imposed solitude until sweet, sexy and completely off-limits Emma Taylor comes crashing into his world…

Trust in Me

With a make-or-break business expansion in the works, the last thing Jason Montgomery needs is a hands-on assistant who wants to get her hands on him…

Buy at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or iBooks.

About the Author: 4_17 Samantha ChaseNew York Times and USA Today bestselling romance writer Samantha Chase released her debut novel, Jordan’s Return, in November 2011. Although she waited until she was in her 40’s to publish for the first time, writing has been a lifelong passion. Her motivation to take that step was her students: teaching creative writing to elementary age students all the way up through high school and encouraging those students to follow their writing dreams gave Samantha the confidence to take that step as well.

When she’s not working on a new story, she spends her time reading contemporary romances, playing way too many games of Scrabble or Solitaire on Facebook and spending time with her husband of 25 years and their two sons in North Carolina.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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Writing Effective Characters by T.M. Williams – Guest Blog and Giveaway

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This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. The author will be awarding $10 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Writing Effective Characters

One of the most common mistakes that even seasoned writers make is creating ineffective characters. I’m a reader before I’m a writer and I’ve spent most of my life reading and loving books. One of my biggest pet peeves is a character that doesn’t pop off a page and a character that is black and white, good or evil. No one in real life is like that. Even Adolph Hitler had a reason for doing what he did. There were people who saw good in him, why? There were people who loved him, why? He believed he was doing the right thing. Although, today, we agree that he was an evil man – that wasn’t the general consensus when he was alive. There were many who gave their lives for him.

Yet, when we write a protagonist – we tend to forget they have their own back story or a reason to being who they are. When we write our hero or heroine, they’re flawless in their decision making. They never have a truly selfish deed and everything falls into place. Do we really know anyone like this? So why do we write this way?

The dialogue of a character speaks volumes for them. Here are some great questions to ask yourself about your character:

Are they verbose?
Do they beat around the bush?
Do they use a lot of idioms?
Are they soft-spoken?
Are they always playing the peacemaker?
Is their English broken?
Are they more of a listener than a talker?

A real hero usually has a lot of help from those around them, whether it was a direct or an indirect influence. These are all things to keep in mind when writing a character. And hardly anyone ever speaks or communicates with each other perfectly.

Example of bad dialogue:

“I’m going to need a lot of help with rescuing her so I’m going to ask John and Jill to help me. Then I’ll give you a call so you can pick us up,” Monica said.
“I think that’s a good idea. I’ll go to the warehouse and wait there with your mother.”

Shoot me with boredom! This is a major revelation in a story and there’s no mystery. A better way would be:

She paced back and forth, repeatedly running her hands through her hair.
“You’re going to need help,” he stated.
Monica stopped in her tracks and pressed the heel of her hand to her forehead. Shaking her head she said, “I know, but I can’t ask them to do that.”
“They’d want to.”
She took a deep breath and pulled her cell out of her back pocket. “Okay, I’ll call John and Jill.”
He nodded and his shoulders slumped, relaxing. “We’ll wait for you at the warehouse,” He forced a smile. He stood up and wiped his hands absent-mindedly on the front of his jeans. “I’ll go pick up your mother,” he said as he walked out of the apartment, leaving her alone to make the call.

This was just a quick way to demonstrate painting a picture. Which dialogue gave you a better idea of the type of characters we’re dealing with? Which dialogue painted a better picture? Through the dialogue in the latter example we saw the main characters stress in having to ask for help. We saw that this was a big deal and was something she was hesitant to do. We also see that perhaps the male character is someone she trusts because she is quick to take his advice.

Often times, the biggest statement made is without words.

4_17 BookCover_ClustersSeven year old Olivia Baxter and her dog vanish while playing in the front yard of her family’s home. After a week of searching, Olivia’s body was suddenly found in the closet, even after the police had thoroughly investigated the home.

Ethan Franco is a troubled journalist working for the Washington Gazette. His inability to move on from the past has deflated the passion he had for his career, causing him to lose his edge. Frustrated with Ethan Franco, but not wanting to lose his once star journalist, Editor-in-Chief, Jameson Stone assigns him a story to cover as a last chance to prove he could be the reporter he once was.

Ethan Franco begins his investigation into the mysterious death of Olivia Baxter and other unexplained disappearances, believing there may be a connection in the cases. No sooner did Franco begin his investigation then he realizes he is being tailed by government agencies.

Large footprints in the woods, strange sounds, foul stenches, and a looming government presence become pieces of the puzzle in cases of the missing.

Inspired by real events, the author of the Bohemian Grove trilogy and the Apocalypse brings forth a story that has been kept a secret for over a century — a story that a large group of people are still trying to keep under wraps.

Enjoy an excerpt:

Just as Michael reached for the pot of coffee, replaying that scene in his head for the thousandth time, a noise from the back room stopped him. Claire was closest to the hallway where the sound came from and she spun around quickly, drawing her gun.

Deena shot up to her feet, her eyes bright with concern. “Who’s back there?” she whispered to the officers.

The Captain shook his head. No one was back there. Michael had checked the bedrooms just an hour before, like he had done every morning, hoping to find some missing clue as to Olivia’s sudden disappearance. Claire backed up to the north side of the hallway while Sean and Craig flanked the other side, their guns drawn as well.

The noise came again, clearer this time. “Is that a dog?” Claire whispered, her eyebrows drawn together in a deep V.

Whimpers filled the home, followed by – scratching? Claire narrowed her eyes as they made their way quickly down the hallway toward Olivia’s bedroom, with Michael leading. As they entered her room it was clear where the noise came from.

“I think that’s our dog,” Deena said, wide-eyed.

The rangers all exchanged looks. The family dog had disappeared the same morning as Olivia.

Michael approached Olivia’s closet door and motioned for Craig and Sean to flank his right. He opened the door in one quick motion just as the frightened looking dog bounced out of the closet, causing Michael to stumble back at the sight inside.

Deena’s tortured scream pierced the air as she fell to the floor, crawling over to the dead body of her little girl, curled up on the closet floor.

About the Author:4_17 AuthorPhoto_ClustersT.M. Williams began her writing career by accident when a song inspired a story. Once she discovered the writing bug she couldn’t stop. Since starting her writing career late in 2012 she has gone on to write several more novels, including two Amazon best-sellers.

She writes Experimental Fiction and Non-Fiction. She is also a freelance journalist, copywriter, and public speaker.

Twitter | Facebook | Website (Signed copy available to purchase) | Blog

Buy the book at Barnes and Noble or Amazon.

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Metamorphosis by RW Reels – Spotlight and Giveaway

4_16 BBT_TourBanner_Metamorphosis

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. The author will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

4_16 BookCover_MetamorphosisMetamorphosis: The Trey Parker Story, the first novel in a three-part paranormal thriller series. A young male is forever changed after a near death experience. His incident invites the attention of a covert Government agency. A gritty detective remains diligent in discovering the facts of the incident and encounters opposition from the unlikeliest of places.

Enjoy an excerpt:

The Chief says, “Explain the circumstances regarding the arrest of Thomas Barstow today.”

Tightening his arms around his chest, Landis knows this is the bullshit he was warned about in the academy. This is the part of the force he did not sign up for. Serving the community is only 5% of it. The other 95% is this shit.

Landis says, “Well, sir, I was writing parking tickets on East Kansas Avenue when I got the 9-1-1 call of a possible sexual assault in the area.”

The Chief interrupts. “Did you receive a call from police dispatch … or did you overhear dispatch make an all-units call?”

Landis labors to take in a deep breath. “I should say that I overheard the all-units call.”

Special Prosecutor Lancaster is already taking notes and barely looks up. Landis stares at the prosecutor and is not sure he has ever seen someone scribble so fast. These bastards are setting him up.

“Officer Landis.”

Landis brings his eyes back to the Chief. “Yes, sir?”

“Please continue.”

Landis sighs and begins to see the victim all over again in his head as he relives the events. “Well, I overheard the call and was about two blocks away, so I went to the address dispatch mentioned. Once I got there, I realized that I was the first on the scene.”

The Chief asks a question everyone in the room knows the answer to. “When you say that you were the first on the scene, does that mean you were the first responder?”

“Yes, I was the first responder,” noticing the special prosecutor has stopped writing to look at him for the answer.

The Chief nods. “Continue.” The special prosecutor goes back to writing.

“I saw the victim was an African American female that was beaten. Her face was bloody … she was missing some front teeth and had two black eyes. Her nose was all …”

The Chief’s voice grows louder. “What did you do after seeing the victim, Landis?”

His heart beats in his throat, Landis yells, “I went after the bastard next, that’s what I did.”

The Chief relaxes his posture and lowers his voice. The look on his face reveals he just got the answer he was looking for. “We don’t go after bastards, Officer Landis … We follow evidence that leads us to perps.”

Landis remains tight-lipped and redder than a stop sign, squeezing each armrest with both hands.

The Chief asks, “What is the first responder’s primary duty?”

Landis lets out a deep breath. “To secure the scene, call for medical attention if needed, and to wait for backup.” Rage makes its way in as the young cop grits his teeth. “Do you mind telling me what the fuck this is about? I take a fucking rapist off the street and …”

Before he can finish, the Chief rises to his feet and raises his voice. “This is about protocol, kid. Something your hotheaded ass didn’t follow. Because of your dereliction to duty, a rapist may end up going free unless the DA can find a way to save this case. If you want to be a police officer on my force, then you have to count for one … You must, count for one. This was not the work of a trained police officer.”

His face as red and hot as a branding iron fresh off the coals, Landis stands. “This is about truth. Do you remember our front seat companion that gives us the right to kick a bad guy in the ass? Well, it’s justice. And that’s what the victim got today. Justice.”

The fed up Chief waves off his green officer. “Save your speeches until you run for office. This type of shoddy police work is why you will never make detective … You find value in seeking the truth versus following procedure. Go pack your desk. You’re looking at a two-week suspension, son.”

About the Author: 4_16 AuthorPhoto_MetamorphosisMy infatuation with writing was born before I ever took my first breath, somewhere on the rural plains of Eastern North Carolina, nourished by the adventures of my grandmother’s childhood. From the time I was only four or five years old, her memories gave flight to my imagination and fuel to my curiosities. Her stories widened my eyes to the fascinatingly bizarre in the everyday.

As a young girl, my grandmother would bring her puppy with her to stalk rabbits every morning. The two of them would chase an unlucky long-eared rascal until it escaped into a hollow at the base of a tree, and she would run a stick around the inside of the opening as though churning butter. The spell of the sound and vibration would lure the rabbit out of the tree and into her hands.

Good fiction, inventive and provocative fiction, reverberates in readers and spellbinds them. It can spur surprise, delight, discomfort, and revelation and defy reason. As a storyteller, I strive to help others solve their problems by sharing things that I have read about, heard about, and seen. But I also prize the look on people’s faces when they hear the brilliant punch line of a joke, or when they experience an epiphany that knocks the logical wind out of them. These are the reactions that I live to inspire in my audiences when I write paranormal thrillers.

My obsession with the extraordinary in my writing might also, ironically, stem from my 20-year career in the U.S. Army. I can allow my mind to wander in the extraterrestrial sphere while my love for my country keeps me grounded in domestic affairs. Of all of my accomplishments, serving as a paratrooper in a Special Forces Group and a Field Artillery outfit during Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm claims high rank. Few situations force a person to confront his humanity as painfully as going off to war, and this experience taught me both to accept accountability for my actions and to trust others. Eventually, I became a successful Army Recruiter and Station Commander, earning the Top Recruiting Station awards in Dallas and Seattle Recruiting Battalions. North Carolina Central University granted me a Public Service Award for my work in the local community. And currently, I serve fellow veterans as an HR Specialist for the Department of Veteran Affairs.

Other passions of mine include playing chess, traveling, and indulging in my contrarian nature by instigating debate. Spending time with my wife tops the list of my life’s privileges, however. Whether I am entertaining her with my emulation of Laurence Olivier as Marcus Crassus or protecting her from an elk during one of our photography excursions in the wild, I treasure her companionship and affection.

When I was twelve years old, I announced to my Aunt Becky and Cousin Tony that I wanted to write a book. They stared at me in astonishment. The world of publishing was an enigma to simple country folks in Beaufort, North Carolina in 1982. These days I am achieving my dream with the ebook, a medium through which I can express my individuality without sacrificing my voice to expectations of marketability, popularity, and deadlines. My goal is to create an opportunity for escapism that is bold and absolute.

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After Party Affair by Isabel Raven – Spotlight and Giveaway

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This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Isabel will be awarding a free ebook copy of After Party Affair to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

4_14 after BookCover_AfterPartyAffairNineteen-year-old Becky Smithton never imagined she’d be invited to her friend, Lorna’s, birthday bash only to be humiliated. The party is over and Becky’s seething with fury, wandering outside and itching for revenge. But what can she do to get back at Lorna and her snobbish mother? A walk through the woods and a chance encounter with Lorna’s bodilicous father, Grant, presents the perfect opportunity. Seducing the dark, handsome—and forbidden—thirty-eight year old should be easy, right? But Grant is made of stronger stuff than other men and soon it’s Becky who’s struggling with frustrated desire. What’s more, her heart is doing funny things and so is her mind, filling her with sudden what-the-hell? pregnancy fantasies involving Grant. As for her body, well, it’s naked and wet, and all she wants is for Grant to dive into the swimming pool and give her what she craves—shallow and deep. After all, if her seduction succeeds then their tryst would only be a meaningless, after party affair… Right?

Enjoy an excerpt:

I was about to head back when the cottage’s front door opened behind me. “Becky?”

As ever, my skin tingled at the sound of Grant’s deep voice. At the sight of his tall, muscular frame, it heated into a blush I was glad he couldn’t see. He’d taken off his tuxedo jacket and cummerbund, and a few of his shirt buttons were undone. With his sleeves rolled up and his thick black hair dishevelled, he gave off an alluring after-party vibe.

“Sorry,” I said stupidly, realising he’d asked me a question. “I was out for a walk and didn’t know you were working.”

Grant perused my outfit before lifting his gaze to the sky. The stars that had illuminated my run to the swimming pool were nowhere to be seen. “It’s clouding over. I’ll find you something for the walk back.”

I frowned at his broad shoulders. No doubt Grant, too, thought I looked cheap, though he was too polite to say so. But he was right about one thing, if it rained more heavily I’d be soaked by the time I got to the house. The second I stepped into the low-ceilinged cottage my eyes widened. Polished oak floors strewn with colourful rugs and a terracotta colour scheme made the long structure seem like a cosy hideaway. A large desk and office paraphernalia occupied the space near the door, and the opposite end was dominated by a Victorian fireplace. The three-seater sofa in front of it looked like the perfect place to curl up with a good book.

“I love it,” I exclaimed.

“It used to be the gardener’s cottage.”

“It’s warm and bright and not at all like—” Oops.

“Like the main house,” Grant finished wryly. “Don’t worry, I’m not offended. Kate has full reign up there, but here I’m the boss.”

About the Author: 4_14 after AuthorPhoto_AfterPartyAffairFor Isabel there’s nothing better than writing about men and women who break boundaries to explore their desires. Sweet romance with chaste kisses and closed-door sex? You’re not going to find it in her books! She writes what she likes to read, graphic intimacy between protagonists with plenty of character. Her heroines and heroes are ordinary people with secret cravings. People who will disregard taboos and traditions to follow their hearts—with plenty of hot and sweaty sex along the way.

Pop in and say hello on FB: www.facebook.com/isabelrraven (there’s an extra ‘r’ between ‘isabel’ and ‘raven’

Buy After Party Affair at the publisher, Amazon, Amazon UK, or All Romance eBooks.

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