Thursday, January 31, 2013

Review Prophecy of Blood (The Dream-Walker War #3) By Tory Michaels


"Prophecy of Blood"

Author: Tory Michaels
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Pages: 275
Source: Author in exchange for a honest review.
Published: December 31, 2012







Author's Website: www.torymichaels.com/

Buy Links: ARe - Amazon US - Amazon UK

Goodreads Blurb: One hundred ninety-eight seasons after the mushroom-shaped clouds first blossom to poison the humans of the Rising Sun, near the beginning of the Season of Inundation, Atlantis will return.

With those words ringing in their ears, vampires Christine Javert and Jordan MacNaught find themselves in a race against time to stop the return of Atlantis. As they hunt for the deadly Ares, they discover his plots to incite a world-wide species war are in fact diversion from his far more sinister plans for the humans.


My Review: Once again Tory takes me by surprise in the direction she takes with the series. It was a great continuation (my favorite so far) and has even more magic, deception, action, suspense and romance than before. Any paranormal romance reader will definitely enjoy Prophecy of Blood!

Chris is still the beautiful, intelligent and strong woman we were introduced to earlier in the series. She learns many new things about herself, where she truly comes from, her powers and more about others that she’s unsure she even wants to know. One thing she DOES know for sure is… she’s falling hard for Jordan. So much to worry about with all that’s happening around her, she now has the fear that is her friends find out about how she feels, she’ll no longer have them :(

Jordan seems almost like a new man. He’s still a bit of a loon, a hardcore bad ass and sexually attracted to one he should be repulsed by, or should he. He fights many battles with both himself and others around him trying to bring harm to many. He should not care, yet he does and will stop at nothing to keep them all safe, especially Chris.


I LOVED seeing another side to both Jordan and Chris. An actual softer side (well as soft as you can get with these two), I never thought I’d actually grow to like Jordan. But I do! For those of you wondering if it can be read as a stand-alone read, the answer is yes. But I strongly suggest you reading the entire series in order so you can truly understand the whys and the how’s of the story. You may not truly appreciate what goes on (especially between Chris and Jordan) otherwise :)




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Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Review Jungle Freakn’ Bride (Freakn’ Shifters #3.5) By Eve Langlais


"Jungle Freakn’ Bride"

Author:  Eve Langlais
Genre: Erotic Paranormal Romance
Pages: 246
Source: Author in exchange for a honest review.
Published: December 13, 2012
Author's Website: www.evelanglais.com/

Buy Links: B&N - Amazon US - ARe

Goodreads Blurb:  Warning: Hot, steamy threesomes, chauvinism and more are running wild in the jungle. Can you handle the heat?

Abducted by a pair of hunky, tribal warriors, Carlie doesn’t think things can get any stranger until the first time she purrs.

Everyone’s heard of the mysterious Moon Ghost Jaguars, supposed shapeshifting men who steal women as their brides. What they forgot to mention was that half naked, ripped and oh so delicious, they always came as a pair – and turned into really big freakn’ cats! But Carlie’s not about to let these furry Tarzan’s dictate her future, even if they seem to have conquered her body.

Acat didn’t think he wanted a mate until he came across the outspoken American with golden hair. Making her his bride is only part of the battle. With the help of his best friend, Chaob, can he find a way to convince this strong willed woman to follow the traditions of his tribe? Or will this reluctant jungle bride get her lovers to accept the fact she’ll never be a classic barefoot and pregnant mate?


 Oh what a wonderfully HOT and invigorating jungle adventure! I love Eve’s original and very entertaining humor. It just shines right through everything she writes. Add on some hot shifters, a beautiful tropical jungle and amazing sex and we have ourselves one great read, one that any erotic, paranormal romance reader will enjoy a tropical escape with ;)

Carlie is with a research group deep in jungle depths right along with its wildlife. She’s one tough cookie that loves her freedom and will not hold back voicing it either. She awakens in her tent with company and before you know it wakes up again while she’s being kidnapped and taken even deeper into the jungle. Her kidnappers will not speak to her, so communication is null. No clue what’s going on, well except for the fact she was kidnapped. She continues to voice the unpleasantness of the situation with hopes of them letting her go. Not. Gonna. Happen. Once again waking up from passing out, she finds herself among the tribe of the Moon Ghost Jaguars and two of them being her hot kidnappers. What’s a girl to do?

Chaob and Acat are longtime friends and fated by the gods to share the same woman. When they finally find her, they are unsure how to feel, at first. She’s a beauty in their eyes and VERY different from any woman ever brought to their tribe to become a bride. But they are determined to succeed, be a mated trio and live a happy life in the jungle. Can they convince their bride that she belongs with them and will be happy living their ways?

There is so much fun and antics among this trio; the fights, the excitement, the growing love that’s not realized at first by the characters but seen by the reader. Each one of them learned something from being brought together, forced or not, fate is fate and you just cannot mess with it, ever!  I hope there will be more to the Freakn' Shifters series! I will miss it so much once it reaches its end :(





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Review The Third Son (Kings of Cardenas #1) By Elise Marion


"The Third Son (Kings of Cardenas #1)"

Author: Elise Marion 
Genre: Historical Romance
Pages: 257
Source: Free ebook
Published: September 23, 2011
Author's Website: www.elisemarion.com/



Buy Links: B&N - Amazon US - Amazon UK

Goodreads Blurb: Rake. Rogue. Scoundrel. Each of these words has been used to describe Damien Largess, youngest prince of Cardenas, most frequently by his ridiculously somber eldest brother. Damien is perfectly content to spend his days drinking at the card tables, and his nights in the bed of his scheming mistress, especially since doing these things seems to vex his high-handed brother to no end. But when he steps into a glittering ballroom on the night of his twenty-fifth birthday, the roguish young prince's life will be forever changed.

Beautiful. Graceful. Sensual. When Esmeralda steps into the center of the King's ballroom to perform for his youngest son's birthday, every eye in the room is glued to the tall, lithe Gypsy dancer. One pair of eyes seems to burn straight through her, and though she has worked endlessly to shield her heart, she finds her defenses slowly slipping away in the presence of the handsome prince. She cannot resist his devastating charm, nor is she immune to the earth shattering desire in his kiss. As she falls rapidly under his spell, Esmeralda dares to hope for a future she would never have thought possible.

With a deadly plot against the royal family surrounding him in danger and intrigue, Damien will face a decision he never thought he would have to make. Would he step up to claim a responsibility that should never have fallen to the third son? Or will he abandon it to risk all for love?


 A very sweet, exciting, touching and sensual story that had me in love with a majority of its characters from the start, specifically Damien and Esmeralda and their journey towards true happiness. Their story is a rollercoaster of a ride in various ways that kept me holding my breath in anticipation many times over. The Third Son is a historical romance that all fans of the genre will be captivated by from start to finish.

Damien has a reputation as a rogue and much more, none of it being good. The youngest of three males and the most free spirited, it is not easy following behind two other brothers that are in line before him for the throne, but he does what he must and that is enjoying his time gambling, drinking and having his bed always warm with a beautiful woman. Things take a complete turn for him without him even realizing it on one special night when he watches a beautiful gypsy dancer perform in the ballroom during his birthday celebration. He is hypnotized by her beauty and grace and feels a pull like he’s never felt before for a woman. One thing he does know for sure, he must have her!

Esmeralda is a beautiful, talented and very kind hearted gypsy dancer that is well loved by her family and friends. Due to an uncontrollable situation in her past, she has a wall built around her heart and has yet to know a mans love. When she comes to meet and know Prince Damien, she finds herself drawn to him, even with his horrible reputation. He is nothing but kind to her and she’s drawn to him like a moth to a flame, just one kiss and her wall crumbles. Her heart now belongs to him, now they just need to make it work and find a way for others to see how they are meant to be for one another whether any of those close minded fools like it or not!

Book 1 of the Kings of Cardenas series is an excellent start, one that will tug at your heart strings and leave you wanting much more. Elise wrote us a very vivid and touching story that you will find yourself getting lost within its pages and feel its loss when you reach its end.





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Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Guest Post & Book Spotlight: "A Time For Everything" by Ann Gimpel



Hot! Hot! Hot! All that Sex and Why it Works (or doesn’t)

When I was growing up a million years ago, the only places you could find explicit sex in written material was at pornographic bookstores. Mostly they were located in the seedier sections of town and were frequented by men. The nineteen-sixties changed all that.

Now it’s sometimes hard to find books that don’t have sex. And lots of it. I started thinking about why some books feel hotter than hell and others are so blah I find myself skipping over the love scenes. (Critical caveat: These are only my ideas. I’d love to know what the rest of you think.)

Each of us is unique, but for me a book starts and ends with characters. They need to feel real and their motivations need to feel believable. If I can’t get into the characters, it’s hard for me to care what sort of love mess they’ve gotten themselves into.

Let me back up a few paces here. If I can’t get past the cover, I’ll never even get to the characters. Cover art is really important. I always check to make certain my contracts say I get input into cover art. And I’ve been blessed with really talented cover artists who share my vision of what's in my books.

Moving along here. So we have a dynamite cover that draws you into clicking on it, reading the blurb and, hopefully, liking what you’ve seen well enough to buy. While I’m ranting about covers, I like the ones with less flesh better. I think you can do way more with inference. And after being inundated with sleek, airbrushed bodies and six-pack abs, they’ve sort of lost their punch.

Vivid, three-dimensional characters are a combination of “real” with “larger than life” that works. That means the men are alphas and the women strong and sexy. Ditto for GLBT stories. The characters have to draw you in regardless of their sexual orientation. Strong characters can pull off gay, straight and ménage without breaking a sweat. They make you care what happens to them. I volunteer as a judge for the EPIC contest each year. Last year, one of the books I read had a secondary character with an androgynous name. I was well into the book before I discovered they were female. The author was skilled enough, it didn’t matter a twit.

With good characters, you can do just about anything. Sex in books that leaves you panting for more always involves credible characters yearning for one another. There’s a very old saying that the best sex happens in the mind. So we think about what someone’s body might be like, how they’d kiss us, or how their hands would feel on our bodies. Self-stim scenes are perfect to spin fantasies and ratchet up the sexual heat.
It’s the yearning and the moving towards and away from one another several times that builds the tension an author needs. I want characters strung tight as bow strings so when they finally do get together, it’s so steamy you need to crack a window.

Effective sex in writing is way more than who touched whom where.

What about for all of you? What makes sex in a book so compelling you can’t put it down? If you had to pick a favorite character, who would it be and why?



A Time for Everything
Ann Gimpel

Blurb:

Siobhan Macquire’s fortune has attracted a string of men who are out to drain her for everything they can get. Her last boyfriend was no exception. Furious at being used—again—she goes for a walk in the Highlands.

With the weather worsening, she wanders alone for hours. She’s soaking wet and starting to get scared when someone calls out to her. A striking-looking man emerges from the mist. Except there’s something wrong. His kilt is way too long and he talks with an archaic accent. Siobhan soon finds herself not only lost in the countryside but also in time.
Sam pulled the draw cords of her hood tighter, squinting against driving rain. She shivered, willing her legs to move faster. Even in the northern latitudes, it got dark eventually during what passed for summer, and the light was definitely fading. One foot sloughed into a hole. Cursing roundly, she yanked it out, noting the mud added what felt like ten pounds to her tired leg. Going on a ramble—as the locals called it—by herself had seemed like a good idea earlier in the afternoon. Now she wasn’t so sure. It had been hours since she’d seen another soul. The air felt heavy—and threatening, somehow.
“Don’t be ridiculous,” she scolded herself. “My imagination’s off the clock, working overtime.”
A flash off toward the river was followed almost immediately by a rumbling crash. It started raining harder. The sky lit again, casting the wet greenery and surrounding mountains in a macabre glow. Thunder sounded so loud it made her ears ring. The next lightning flare sparked off a rock not twenty feet away. Sam’s heart sped up. She stared at the mountains ringed about her. Why wasn’t the storm up there? Lightning was supposed to be drawn to high points, not meadows saturated with water.
As if determined to prove her wrong, another flash struck the ground off to her left. She threw her hands over her ears but the thunder reverberated in her brain as if someone had struck an anvil right next to her. Shaking her head to try to make her ears stop hurting, she started walking again. Lightning struck inches from her feet. Sam lurched to a stop, blinking to clear the afterimage. Even as wet as it was, the air felt electrified, thick with sharp edges. She could almost see marauding electrons reaching for her, hungry little mouths wide open.
Fear raced along her nerve endings, making her feel as if she’d downed half a dozen double espressos in a row. The breath whooshed out of her and her head spun crazily.
The storm’s trying to kill me.
Oh, please, she answered herself. Sam hated her tendency to engage in two-way inner dialogue, but she’d done it all her life.
An excruciating twenty minutes and half a dozen lightning strikes later, she thought it might be safe to move. It was raining like a son of a bitch, but after striking what looked like a circle around where she stood, the electrical part of the storm had left as quickly as it had come.
Guess the storm gods didn’t want me, after all.
Why should they? No one else does.
Sam sank into a funk. Shit, could I possibly be any wetter? Weather in the British Isles had been particularly wretched this summer. “Yeah, sort of like the rest of my life,” she muttered as she tried to assess if she’d be better off staying on the track or cutting cross-country toward where she thought a roadway was. Resolutely, she struck out for the road and promptly stepped into calf-deep water. It ran over the top of her boot and soaked her thick, woolen sock before she could jerk her foot back to solid ground.
So much for that idea. Obviously, there’d been so much rain the ground on both sides of the track had turned into a bog. She’d never seen one before this trip to Scotland. They were hideous. Miles of saturated ground with water deep enough to reach her knees in some places. Sam glanced at her watch and groaned. She’d been walking for close to five hours. No wonder it was getting dark. The village she was aiming for shouldn’t actually be all that far away. In fact, she should have been there long since. About to tuck her watch back under her sleeve, she took one last look at it and realized the second hand had stopped. She tapped the crystal with her finger but nothing happened.
Crap! Wonder when it quit? Must be the damp.
Yes, another less pleasant voice piped up, it also means I have no idea how long I’ve been walking. Peering through mist-shrouded countryside, she looked for some signs of Beauly Village but all she saw were sheep.
Sam told herself to keep walking. It wasn’t as if there was anywhere she could even sit to consider her options. Everything dripped water. Her jacket and pants, which had always provided adequate protection from the elements back in the States, were woefully inadequate here. She was afraid to pull out her cell phone. Electronics and water definitely weren’t compatible. Yeah, just look what happened to my watch. Dark thoughts crowded her mind. Why had she thought it would be romantic to spend a year in Scotland?
You know why, an inner voice—the nasty one—sneered. It was your infatuation with Clint. Sam gave her resident maven a point for accuracy. Clint, with his spiffy Scottish intonations, dreamy blue eyes, and red-blonde curls, had sweet-talked her into bankrolling a trip to his home. Between his ever-so-broad shoulders, washboard abs, and nice, tight ass, he’d barely let her out of bed for a month. By the time she’d figured out the reason he had so much time on his hands was because he didn’t have a job, it was too late. She was head over heels in love. And hoping desperately that this time it would lead her to the altar. After all, it wasn’t as if he had to work. All he needed to do was treat her like a queen. She had plenty of money for both of them.
Eager to grant her prince whatever he wanted, she’d readily agreed when he’d talked longingly of going back to Scotland for a while. Except he’d had a personality transplant practically the second they’d landed in Glasgow. In the month-and-a-half since they’d arrived, she’d scarcely seen him. He was always off with his mates, as he called them, drinking or climbing. There were weeks when he hadn’t returned to their rental flat in Inverness at all. Worse, she suspected some of those mates were gay. When she’d asked him if he swung both ways his eyes had turned to blue ice chips. He’d twisted away and slammed out of the house. That was the last time she’d seen him.
Water ran off the bill of her hood. Some of it dripped into one eye. “Oh to hell with it,” she snarled. “I’m catching the first plane out of here—without him.” She sighed, feeling sad and angry by turns. Clint was far from the first man who’d taken advantage of her. As soon as they found out she was an heiress to a whiskey fortune, they promised her the moon and then fleeced her for everything they could get. She’d gotten pretty cagy in the years between sixteen and her current twenty-five. She’d even rented a modest apartment in Seattle and pretended she lived there when she met someone new.
Eventually, though, when she thought a guy might be different, she took him to the Capitol Hill mansion she’d more-or-less inherited after her parents relocated to one of their many other homes. No matter how promising a relationship looked, the truth of that rambling mansion was always the beginning of the end.



Short Bio:

Ann Gimpel is a clinical psychologist, with a Jungian bent.  Avocations include mountaineering, skiing, wilderness photography and, of course, writing.  A lifelong aficionado of the unusual, she began writing speculative fiction a few years ago. Since then her short fiction has appeared in a number of webzines and anthologies. Two novels, Psyche’s Prophecy, and its sequel, Psyche’s Search, have been published by Gypsy Shadow Publishing, a small press. A husband, grown children, grandchildren and three wolf hybrids round out her family.
           
@AnnGimpel (for Twitter)

 Long Bio: 

Ann Gimpel is a mountaineer at heart. Recently retired from a long career as a psychologist, she remembers many hours at her desk where her body may have been stuck inside four walls, but her soul was planning yet one more trip to the backcountry. Around the turn of the last century (that would be 2000, not 1900!), she managed to finagle moving to the Eastern Sierra, a mecca for those in love with the mountains. It was during long backcountry treks that Ann’s writing evolved. Unlike some who see the backcountry as an excuse to drag friends and relatives along, Ann prefers her solitude. Stories always ran around in her head on those journeys, sometimes as a hedge against abject terror when challenging conditions made her fear for her life, sometimes for company. Eventually, she returned from a trip and sat down at the computer. Three months later, a five hundred page novel emerged. Oh, it wasn’t very good, but it was a beginning. And, she learned a lot between writing that novel and its sequel.

Around that time, a friend of hers suggested she try her hand at short stories. It didn’t take long before that first story found its way into print and they’ve been accepted pretty regularly since then. A trilogy, the Transformation Series, featuring Psyche’s Prophecy, Psyche’s Search and Psyche’s Promise is complete. The initial two books have been published, with the final volume scheduled for release in 2012. One of Ann’s passions has always been ecology, so her tales often have a green twist and the Transformation Series is no exception.

In addition to writing, Ann enjoys wilderness photography. Part of her website is devoted to photos of her beloved Sierra. And she lugs pounds of camera equipment in her backpack to distant locales every year. A standing joke is that over ten percent of her pack weight is camera gear which means someone else has to carry the food! That someone else is her husband. They’ve shared a life together for a very long time. Children, grandchildren and three wolf hybrids round out their family.




Review Rogue Rider (Lords of Deliverance #4) By Larissa Ione


"Rogue Rider"

Author:  Larissa Ione
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Pages: 432
Source: Publisher in exchange for a honest review.
Published: November 20, 2012
Author's Website: www.larissaione.com/

Buy Links: B&N - Amazon US - Amazon UK

Goodreads Blurb: The prophecies were there but no one listened. Until now. They are the Lords of Deliverance and they have the power to ward off Doomsday . . . or let it ride.

Jillian Cardiff came to this remote mountain town to forget the demon attack that almost killed her. Instead, she rescues - and falls for - a gorgeous stranger who has no memory of anything other than his name. Handsome, charming and protective, Reseph seems like the kind of man that Jillian can trust. But with hints of a troubling history of his own, he's also the kind of man that can be very dangerous . . .

Reseph may not know his background, or why he mysteriously appeared in Jillian's life, but he knows he wants to stay. Yet when Jillian's neighbours are killed and demon hunters arrive on the scene, Reseph fears that he's putting Jillian in danger. And once it's revealed that Reseph is also Pestilence, the Horseman responsible for ravaging the world with death and destruction, he and Jillian must face the greatest challenge of all: can they forget the horrors of a chilling past to save the future they both desire?


I absolutely ADORE this series and its author! Rogue Rider is an emotional, fun, exciting, funny and an extremely addictive addition to the series (that’s already been an addiction for me before this book!) This is the fourth book of the Lords of Deliverance series and can definitely be read as a stand-alone. However, I VERY strongly recommend starting from book 1 and working your way up. There are tons of antics, romance and adventures to experience that any paranormal romance reader will love!

Jillian is a very strong, determined and beautiful woman that has created a new (albeit lonely) life for herself. Having lost both of her parents and having gone through the most traumatic experience a human could ever go through. She decided to isolate herself in a nice, spacious and cold place very far away from where she was before. Things take a turn (actually a bunch of turns) when she finds a man face down in the snow very close to her home and takes him in to care for his health (as well as him).

Reseph has the unfortunate standing of Pestilence, one of the four horsemen of the Apocalypse. Reseph’s alter ego self (as I like to call him) has recently brought about an astonishing amount of death and chaos to both the humans and other paranormals, many of which deserved the faith they received. But he (Reseph) is far from that type of individual, well unless warranted. His hot and sexy self would much rather help than harm another. He also is a major ladies man and has NEVER been in love or had a serious relationship in his entire life! When he wakes up in a strange place and lay his eyes on Jillian, he feels comforted, different and unsure if he should explore…

A major roller-coaster ride of emotion’s flow between the two main characters and when they finally come to a stop… You’ll be a very happy reader :)




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Monday, January 28, 2013

Guest Post/Interview/Giveaway with Diane Rinella


Diane Rinella
Love’s Forbidden Flower

Free download of an omitted chapter (different genre) http://dianerinellaauthor.com/novels/forbiddenflowers_hunger/

(Make sure to scroll down and enter to win an ebook copy of Love's Forbidden Flower)

Let's get to know Diane


 What inspired you to write Love’s Forbidden Flower?
I watched The Buttercup Chain, a 60’s counter culture film. The two main characters are cousins, via identical twins, who were raised as brother and sister. A small part of the story is based on their obvious romantic connection. The woman is accepting of her emotions while the man is conflicted. Both the book and the film taunted you with the situation but never gave you enough of it to make the storyline satisfying. Upon doing research I discovered that there are so many biases toward the subject that I could not find a single book that really tackled it non-judgmentally. Yet the more I dug, the more common I found the real-life situation to be. There are definitely stories to be told, and I wanted to do so while making the reader forget about the relation and just see the unfairness of societies biases. Love’s Forbidden Flower is a dark human rights piece disguised as a witty romance novel.

Do you have a method for developing your ideas?
Yes, insomnia. I no longer stare at the ceiling in frustration. Instead, I let the voices in my head speak.  After awhile they become what is keeping me awake, and I get up and bring them closer to reality.

How would you describe your writing style?
Personal—in that the reader sees life the way the main character does. Writing in the third person makes me feel like I have a dissociative identity disorder. Since my attention span is horrific I like to keep things moving. Rarely is life all comedy or all tragedy, so you need both. Creating characters and situations that encourage a few chuckles provides a balance that helps the reader ride the emotional rollercoaster while avoiding monotony.

Tell us about your current WIP?
While Love’s Forbidden Flower can be viewed as a stand-alone novel there is more to be told. Time’s Forbidden Flower is drafted and will be released in 2013. I’ll let it slip and say that I am setting it up so that it could have an infinite number of sequels exclusively including new characters while retaining the old ones. (“Huh?” you say. Exactly!) I also have notes for a novel involving a dead rock star, a bored fangirl, a crime ring, and a Ouija board. I favor characters in transgressive relationships and situations, so there will be much more of that to come.










Back Cover copy 


The heart cares not what society forbids.

Lily nurtures a secret love for a flawless man—the one who is her soul mate. Donovan is gorgeous, charismatic, and delights in all of Lily’s talents and quirks. Their innate knowledge of each other is almost telepathic. Together they interlock like fine threads creating luxurious silk.

But society dictates this picture-perfect adoration is the ghastliest of all possibilities.
As Lily embarks on a quest for the romance the heavens intended, her suitor turns reluctant. Desperate to uncover why Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hiding decayed from a tender-hearted gentleman into a ferociously self-serving, cocky bastard, Lily is prepared for battle when it comes to the salvation of her soul mate. However, Donovan traps Lily in a mental game of chess, leaving her to question his sanity. When Lily’s revelations about Donovan’s destructive alter ego lead to an inconceivable truth, can she help Donovan survive fate’s cruel joke?
Impassioned, witty, and deeply moving, Love’s Forbidden Flower is filled with stunning controversies that will forever haunt your heart.

Love’s Forbidden Flower – Chapter 1

Also available at: http://dianerinellaauthor.com/loves-forbidden-flower-chapter-1/

Today, somewhere among the roses and petunias, my sanity squirted out of my brain and fertilized the backyard. Why couldn’t those heart-seizing moments be experienced with anyone else? Why did they have to be with the man who’s the ghastliest of all possibilities?
Obviously I hit my head and became delusional, or I have had so many Thanksgiving leftovers that I’ve slipped into a coma. Volunteering to play catch with Donovan to help keep his arm loose seemed valiant. But he chuckled before rolling his eyes and shaking his head in mock shame, cracking a joke about trying to teach me not to be such a klutz on the field. He’s right. I’m truly female when it comes to sports.
After suffering several minutes of desperation, utter humiliation, and ruthless teasing—I surrendered.
He looked to the sky, arms outstretched, shaking his head in disbelief before sauntering towards me, plotting how to finally teach me the basics of throwing a football. At this point everything still seemed normal.
After tossing me the ball he stood with his back facing me. Raising his right hand he said, “Hold the ball like this.”
Apparently I failed miserably.
“No. More like this,” he emphasized while making a gesture that reflected my grip precisely. He then gave me his snicker that could charm a nun out of her habit. “You’re such a sorry case.”
Strolling behind me, he put his left arm around my waist and pulled me close, twisting my hips as he went. It was nothing. We’ve done it a million times before.
“First, situate your body. Make sure you have a solid grip. Now pull back, like so.”
That’s when I clumsily bonked him in the face.
“Oh, I’m so sorry!” I laughed. He had it coming for that klutz remark.
“Suuuure you are. Now stay in position.” Again he pulled me next to him, but this time placing his cheek against mine. Hesitation flowed over us as our bodies magnificently reacted to the sensuality of the touch. In his racing pulse, his breath, and every cell in his body it seemed that Donovan desired the luxury of exploring my mouth with his own. Thoughts of how he must taste wandered over me. Would he be sweet like the cookies I bake that he loves so much? Or creamy and delicious like an expensive piece of chocolate? The kind where even the tiniest morsel could satisfy a craving, yet would leave you desiring more for days to come.
Just as our cheeks glided together, as if to surrender to the intoxication, he gripped my hand tighter and yelled, “Now throw!” lunging into the toss, forcing me to follow along. It was incredibly beautiful—both the moment and the pass.
“I knew you could do it. You just needed the right touch,” Donovan yelled, running after the ball.
The “right touch?” How does that translate? Was he messing with me so I’d relax, or didn’t he realize what had transpired? Dear God, please let that interlude have been in my head.
He tossed me the ball. “Try it again.”
Resuming position, my mind tried to lift its cloudy haze. “One. Two,” I released the ball. “Three!” The lopsided pass was far better than I’d ever managed before.
Donovan grabbed the ball and tossed it back to me. “Oh, yes! Lily goes aggro! Almost perfect. Try it again.”
The next time it sailed right into his hands. His expression flipped from wide-eyed to a devious turn of the lips as he ran towards my end of the yard. My pride kicked in. There was no way I’d let him get away with this. In the spirit of the game I pounced on him, taking him down to the ground, his head almost landing in a rose bush.
“What the hell? Where did you learn to do that?”
“A woman has her ways,” I said playfully. What was I thinking? Clearly I wasn’t.
His eyes were magnetizing with their composition of deep and complicated blues like the waves of the ocean. Their depth intensified by his fair complexion and layered obsidian hair, reminiscent of the feathers of a raven. My breathing ceased as his eyes drew me in, transfixed.
“Hey, Lil. I’m kind of pinned here.”
At least that’s what I think he said. That pesky haze still cluttered my brain like murky pea soup. He must have raised himself because his hand caressed my face like a whisper while those incredible eyes drew closer. “Hey, you all right?”
My head rattled away the clouds. “Yeah. I’m fine.”
“We’d better call it quits before one of us breaks the other.”
As if nothing extraordinary happened, he aided me to my feet, and we went inside, wordlessly.

The remainder of the evening we desperately tried to act unconcernedly, but it was obvious something was amiss. Our usual dinner banter was strained, causing Mom to pretend hopefully that we might turn into normal siblings, the ones who often don’t get along. But that will never happen; we’re too connected. Our mutual cognizance only fazes others. To us it’s a simple skill we possess, like writing in cursive. How have I never noticed how freakishly unconventional it is?
But dinner was middling. It was after that things got abominable. Or rather, I made an uncouth fool of myself.
“Hey, thanks a lot. You almost got me in massive trouble.” Donovan appeared slightly indignant, albeit a little uncomfortable as he slipped into my room, leaning casually against the doorframe with his arms crossed.
“What?” I asked, dropping my pencil onto my math book while mocking his characteristic eye roll. “Okay, how?”
“You had to tell Dad you tackled me.” Donovan plopped onto the foot of my bed so heavily my book bounced, sending my pencil flying onto the floor. Attempting to look scornful, I lowered and pinched my brows, then motioned for him to pick it up.
“I did, fair and square. Did he really give you a bad time over that?” I swiped the pencil from his hand while hoping Dad was kind, yet knowing the truth. He’s always far too hard on Donovan and expects him to be the quintessential manly son at all times. Also, I should have known better. At 5’11” Donovan’s got a good 7” on me, so of course Dad was upset. No excuses, even when it comes to his sister.
“Just a little. He did that voice again. The one where he’s all, ‘I am trying to sound like I’m kidding, but I also want you to know that I am serious.’ I think he’s afraid I’m going soft right before the big game and I’ll disappoint him.”
It was then the stupidest thing I’ll ever utter sprang from my mouth. “That’s silly, Donovan. I bet you’ll never go soft, and if you don’t watch your moves, the next time I pin you I may do more than damage your ego.”
My insides clamped. Maybe he heard it the way I hope I intended it; but his eyes sparkled as he absorbed my words. Since this afternoon his phenomenal eyes have become my obsession.
As he exited the room, flirtatiously singing, “Goodnight, Lilyanna,” his grin said it all. He knew exactly how I feared I meant it. I might as well have written it on the bathroom mirror and taped his toothbrush next to it. I’m seriously screwed!
It’s nonsensical. There’ll be no enchanted moment where one of us discovers the other was adopted or abandoned by aliens. Though my thoughts should sicken me, all I want is to sneak into his room like I did when I was little, put my head on his shoulder, and have him tell me it’s just a vile dream. But this is reality, and nothing about the radiant glow burning inside me since being captured by his eyes feels nefarious.
But how illogical is it really? Aren’t you supposed to fall for your best friend? The one who listens to you with undivided attention no matter how ridiculous you’re being? The person who will instinctively drop everything to put his arms around you when you’re hurt, even if you’ve yet to utter a word? Donovan is all those things and countless more.
I’ve got to stop reading Mom’s romance novels. They’re making me delusional.




Enjoying San Francisco as a backdrop, the ghosts in Diane’s 150-year old Victorian home augment the chorus in her head. With insomnia as their catalyst, these voices have become multifarious characters that haunt her well into the sun’s crowning hours, refusing to let go until they have manipulated her into succumbing to their whims. Her experiences as an actress, business owner, artisan cake designer, software project manager, Internet radio disc jockey, vintage rock n’ roll journalist/fan girl, and lover of dark and quirky personalities influence her idiosyncratic writing.



Diane is giving away one ebook copy of Love's forbidden Flower to one person that comments below along with their email address. Winner will be chosen via Random.org and announced on Sunday February 10, 2013. Good luck!




Sunday, January 27, 2013

Book Club: Week 4


First, I want to apologize for my absence from the book club. I'm having lots of family troubles right now so I haven't been able to give the blog as much attention as I would like. Hopefully there is light at the end of the tunnel and everything will get back on track.

I did finish reading "Beyond a Highland Mist" and I didn't remember any of it from the first time I read it but I did really enjoy it. I love time travel and men in kilts so this book was written just for me. hehe!

If you were able to complete "Beyond a Highland Mist", tell me your thoughts on the book and what you thought about the way the book ended. Was it totally unexpected for you like it was for me?

Don't forget to vote for February's book. The poll is in the right hand sidebar.

 

Review Permanent Marker (The Kinky Truth) By Angel Payne


"Permanent Marker (The Kinky Truth) "

Author: April Payne
Genre: Erotic Romance
Pages: 175
Source: Publisher in exchange for a honest review.
Published: November 12, 2012
Author's Website: http://www.angelpayne.com/

Buy Links: Amazon US - B & N - All Romance eBooks

Goodreads Blurb: When Mark Moore arrives in Nassau to conduct a corporate training meeting, his only expectation is a week of professional and personal enjoyment in an island paradise. Since stepping down from his senatorial duties to have more time for his pop star daughter, Dasha, he's liked having free time for projects like this--except for the moments when the memories attack of a love long lost, buried six years ago.

He never expects the sweet surprise of Rose Fabian, a student who soon becomes much more. Her kisses and her passion are a balm for his tattered soul--and her submission reawakens every Dominant instinct in his body. But Rose carries emotional scars of her own, wounds that are worsened by desiring Mark: an older man with social standing and integrity that will only be ruined by her influence. Only in finally surrendering to their love can she find the courage to believe that their future will be written in permanent marker.

Note:This book contains explicit sexual situations, graphic language, and material that some readers may find objectionable: BDSM theme and elements


My Review: An insanely intense (in a great way), emotional and erotic BDSM read that will leave you wanting more of the story, characters and the authors writing. Permanent Marker is a definite MUST READ to all fans of the genre. Especially those that enjoy an amazing build to a soul deep relationship.

Rosa is a beautiful, intelligent woman that has very little self-confidence. It’s due to the fact that she’s been put down by those that mean the world to her for a majority of her life. Her confidence begins to change for the better once she meets Mark. He teaches her many amazing things, most of them about herself.

Mark is one intense alpha male/Dom the leaves no room for argument in any given situation. He lost the love of his life many years ago and has just started to live again, to feel. He’s not looking to replace what he has long lost, but when he lays his eyes on Rosa, he feels an instant attraction, a pull and many other feelings that he never thought to feel again.


I plan to read EVERYTHING this author releases and has released. I absolutely love her writing style. I was literally pulled into the story as if I was one of the characters and was not released until the very end. This is one of those stories that stays with you and wants to be reread so you can experience it all over again :)


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Review Wynter’s Captive By Milly Taiden


"Wynter’s Captive "

Author: Milly Taiden
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Pages: 115
Source: Author in exchange for a honest review.
Published: January 18, 2013
Author's Website: millytaiden.com/

Buy Links: B&N - All Romance eBooks

Goodreads Blurb: Being held captive for winter never felt so good.

Lili is on her way to her cousin’s wedding when she thinks she hit a man in the road. Leaving the safety of her car to check on him turns out the be a big mistake, and pretty soon Lili is being abducted and held against her will by a super-sexy wolf who her body longs to touch. But just because he’s hot doesn’t mean she’s going to remain a captive.

Cade is not just an alpha, he’s a very wealthy man, used to getting what he wants. So when he attempts to abduct his ex-friend’s fiancé, in an attempt to teach him a lesson, he doesn’t expect to wind up with the wrong woman. Just how did he wind up with the maid of honor? And why does the woman melt every inch of him? But when the woman escapes, real danger awaits. And Cade must convince her to see beyond his deception if he wants to keep her alive.


My Review: Milly sure knows how to write one hot and engrossing read! She had me hooked after reading Sharp Change and I find myself still hooked and looking for more after reading this story. This is a short, erotic paranormal read that grabs a hold of you and does not let go! Any paranormal romance reader that enjoys it nice and hot will enjoy the brief escape they’ll get with Wynter’s Captive.

Talk about timing! Lili is on her way to her cousins wedding (and in a huge rush), when she suddenly sees someone or something in the road. Thinking she hit the person/thing she pulls over and checks to see if they are alright. BAD IDEA Lili! The male whisks Lili away, abducting her and bringing her to some other males. Abduction… bad! Hot man in front of her right now… good! Very good indeed!

A 4.5 rating for me rounded to a five. My only reason for not giving it a perfect 5 is I was looking for a bit more of a build between Lili and Cade. They are a great couple, the attraction, desire and antics between the two make you want to know more about their future as a couple. I look forward to what Milly has in store for us next :)




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