Anniversary excerpt: Shadow of Doubt

SoD released on this day in 2010 -- one of my favorite books with one of my favorite heroes (Nathan Stokes. Funny and romantic -- what a combo!)

Here's to Nathan and his proposal ...during the middle of a murder investigation!



“Margaret, I’m trying to be serious here.” Nathan immediately regretted the snappish tone in his voice. “I’d like to talk to you about something.”

“I’m sorry.” She came back and resumed her seat. “It’s just so weird to see a mummy in a hotel room. I mean, I’d expect it in Vegas or—”

“Will you marry me?”

She stared at him. “What?”

Nathan closed his eyes, mortified at the way he’d blurted it out. “This wasn’t quite the venue I planned on when I decided to do this.” Nathan looked around the suite then to the window where bright sunlight glinted on the piles of snow outside. “I thought we’d be dancing on a beach and the moon would be shining and…” He pulled out the velvet box from his coat pocket. It looked a bit smudged and grimy. Maybe it wasn’t a good idea to hold it all the time with sweaty hands. Too late now. He thrust it at her. “I know a guy who knows a guy who made a ring for me. Shannon said you’d like it. She said it was perfect.”

“This from the sister who suggested personalized dog tags,” Margaret said with a smile.

“Take it.” Nathan held the box in the palm of his hand.

“I’m not sure… I don’t…” Margaret hesitantly picked up the box and opened it. She stared down at the two stones in the silver setting, nestled on a dark red cushion. “It’s a rock.” She looked up at him, puzzled. “A rock and a diamond.”

Nathan took the box from her and pulled out the ring. “See, one is an unpolished garnet. That’s my birthstone. The other is a diamond. That’s your birthstone.” He held up the ring. “I figured the unpolished thing made sense because, well, you know. I’m unpolished. And you’re so polished. You’re like a diamond. Because you’re so beautiful.”

He was babbling but he couldn’t stop himself. She was just staring at him, her brown eyes as big as saucers. He couldn’t interpret the expression in them—surprise, worry, fear? What was it? He kept talking so he wouldn’t have to think about it.

“I mean, you’re not hard and cold like a diamond. That worried me at first. Then I talked about it with Shannon and explained my reasons. Shannon said you’d like it. She said it made perfect sense. I knew this guy—I helped him with a case last year—he knew where he could get an unpolished garnet.” Nathan laughed nervously. “Actually, his wife had some unpolished stones. She wasn’t his wife then. They just got married a while ago. Harry needed some help and… It’s a long story. I’ll tell you sometime. She inherited them because—Well, anyway, they’re friends with my grandmother. And—” A sharp knock on the door startled him so much he almost dropped the ring.

“Margaret? It’s Kerry Songhorse.”

“Damn it.” Nathan started to put the ring back in the box. “I was hoping we’d have some time alone. I should have waited.”

Margaret put her hand on his. “Let me look at it,” she said in a soft voice.

He put the ring in the palm of his hand. She touched it, her fingers dancing over his skin and sending shivers through him.

“Margaret?” Kerry knocked again.

Margaret held out her left hand. “Yes.”

“What?”

“Yes.” She wiggled her fingers.

Nathan dropped the ring box on the floor and grabbed Margaret’s hand. “Are you sure? I’m not the kind of guy you probably thought you’d marry. I’m not real sophisticated. I mean, you could probably marry anybody you wanted. Why—?”

Margaret leaned forward and kissed him, her lips silencing his words. “Yes, Nathan.”

He aimed the ring toward her finger and managed to get it on without too much damage, just scraping her knuckle a bit. “Thank you,” he whispered. “I won’t let you down.”

She flexed her finger, staring down at the ring. “It’s beautiful.”

“Margaret?” Kerry knocked again.

“I swear to God, relative of yours or not, I’m going to deck that guy if he doesn’t shut up.” Nathan pulled Margaret to her feet and she wrapped her arms around his neck. “I love you.”

“I love you, too.” She kissed him, a slow, lingering kiss that made his head spin. “But now we have to face the world.”

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The second Matt was certain Maggie’s feet were firmly planted on the ground he took hold of her shoulders and forced her backwards until she was against the stone wall. He ignored her startled gasp. 


He ignored the way her soft flesh felt beneath his hands, and the teasing allure of her perfume. He ignored his body’s rapid response to her closeness. He easily overpowered her initial struggles,
madder than a hornet that she’d tried to escape. 


The alley was dark except for one dim light at the end, close to the street, yet he was able to focus on a pair of frightened, glittering eyes.

“Oh! You scared me half to death!” she cried, her hand flying up to cover her pounding heart.

Matt wished she hadn’t done that. The action drew his attention to her creamy breasts, which were all but spilling out of her top. “Give me one good reason I shouldn’t let Bob run you in,” he growled in a furious undertone. He’d long ago learned how the criminal mind worked. He was glad he decided to follow up on his hunch.

“I’m not a prostitute,” she said simply.

“I don’t believe you.” But he wanted to. 

Matt didn’t like thinking he was attracted to a woman who made a living by selling her body. Of course, the woman he’d wanted that morning didn’t look anything like the little tramp in front of him now. The only thing that hadn’t changed was her soft, full mouth and those unforgettable eyes. If he wasn’t careful he could easily drown in those beguiling green depths; cat eyes that mesmerized its prey before pouncing in for the kill.

“But…I can explain everything.”

Her soft laugh steeled Matt’s heart and made up his mind for him. He wasn’t in the mood to hear her lies, or put up with her misplaced humor. “Save it. You’re going to jail, honey.” He took her by the arm and began dragging her behind him. He should let Bob handle it and still might. On his way out of the bar he’d told his ex-partner to wait for him in the front.

“But I thought you weren’t a cop.”

“Not here.” In a few days he would be starting a new job back
home as the local small-town sheriff. He was looking forward to
the change to both his professional and personal life.

“Than you can’t arrest me,” she said in a satisfied tone. She tried to pull away from him. “Maybe I’ll have you arrested for assault, or something.”

Matt didn’t bother to correct her assumption. Mainly because it meant he could get rid of her sooner. And the itch in his loins that had never really diminished since that morning. He tried like hell not to remember how quick his body had reacted to her. “I’ll turn you over to my ex-partner.” He continued pulling her easily along, heading for the end of the alley that opened up onto the street.

“But I can explain the whole thing. It’s really kind of funny. You see…ouch!”

Matt swiveled on his feet in time to catch Maggie from falling to the ground. He dragged her up against him. “Another trick, sweetheart?” They were suddenly standing nose to nose.

“No, I swear! I stepped on something.” They were more than nose-to-nose; they were also mouth-to-mouth.

Matt’s eyes glared into hers, every breath he sucked in filled his lungs with her sweet fragrance. In spite of his instincts for self preservation he continued to hold her against him. His hands were
wrapped around the fleshy part of her upper arms and his fingers
rested against the exposed sides of her warm, lush breasts. He could feel them crushed against him, feel her nipples harden and poke into him with every breath she took.

Damn! He felt his cock swelling. This wasn’t good. Mistake number one was getting involved with her at all. Mistake number two had been in touching her, for any reason. It was ironic that he’d wanted her that morning but couldn’t afford to get involved. Now for a price, he could get involved for a couple of hours and not even look back. He couldn’t accept the fact he wanted her no matter what she was. It had been a damn long time since he’d felt any life below the belt, and now twice in one day he’d had the urge to get laid.

They were too damn close and it was hot in the alley.

He was hot.

Pressing his lips together with grim determination he lowered Maggie to her feet and started to pull her after him once more. The
second her feet hit the pavement she let out a holler and pulled
back. Matt released a reconciled sigh, coming to the conclusion that she wasn’t faking it.

“I’m barefoot,” she explained. Matt glanced down and swore. “My shoes are back there.”

There being back in the alley beneath the window where she’d
made her escape. 

“Which foot?”

“My right one.”

“Let me see it.”

She didn’t move.

“Well?”

With a slight shrug she stepped back and slowly lifted a long, graceful leg toward him. Matt felt the blood race up his neck but couldn’t force himself to look away. He’d always been a sucker for long, beautiful legs, and Maggie’s were certainly all that. He steeled himself from responding, reminding himself what she was. He reached for her injured foot and examined it blindly in the darkness. 

“I don’t feel any blood or protruding objects. Maybe you just stepped on a stone and bruised it.” He intended to drop her foot but his hand encircled her ankle instead. He could feel the ankle bracelet she was wearing beneath her black silk stockings. Hooker stockings. He clenched his teeth in irritation.

“You’re probably right,” she agreed.

Matt noticed the slight tremor in her voice. As she slowly lowered
her leg his hand followed along the curve of her smooth calf, behind her knee until it disappeared beneath her short skirt. He heard Maggie’s soft gasp when his fingers caressed her silken thigh above the garter holding her stocking on. He felt her quiver, the action triggering a sharp need of desire in Matt’s blood. Then realizing
what he was doing, he jerked his hand away.

About that time the door to the bar opened and Bob walked out, pausing long enough to light a cigar. Their eyes fell on him at the same time and suddenly Maggie’s hand was on his arm. He glanced down into her pleading eyes, drowning in their seductive, deceiving depths.

“Matt, I swear what I said is the truth. I’m not a prostitute. I’m only dressed like this because my mother…”

He raised a brow. “Your mother? This is getting better by the minute, honey.”

“I’m doing research for her,” she said hurriedly. “You see, she’s a writer and…”

“You expect me to believe your own mother asked you to dress up as a hooker for research?” His brows drew together in a frown of total disbelief. Matt couldn’t fathom any mother putting her daughter into such a dangerous situation.

 NEWSFLASH! 

Book due out August 2012 at Whiskey Creek Press Torrid.




Tory Richards

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New Release! Wedding Heat: MILF of the Groom


It feels like just yesterday that Wedding Heat: Pretty Cousin hit the mercado, and already it's release day for the 5th Wedding Heat story, MILF of the Groom.

We all know what MILFs are, right? (Moms I'd Like to F*ck?)  Well, the beautiful older woman in this story happens to be the mother of Ed the groom.  She's had the label "MILF of the Groom" affixed to her by seemingly everyone attending her son's wedding weekend.

And that's not all they've been saying about Ellora.

We first heard mention of Ellora in the third story, Wedding Heat: Skinny Dipping, when Greg told Joey the family rumour that she was sleeping with her own son.  Ellora takes the reins in MILF of the Groom to set the record straight, but she's got other issues on top of dealing with the awful things her own family is saying about her.

Ellora's in tears when she bumps into Russ, her son's ruggedly handsome business partner and fellow contractor.  Russ has the body of a jock, but he's also got a wide-open heart and he's very protective of Ellora.  He wants what's best for her... especially if that means spectacular sex at the wedding resort!


  EXCERPT:
Even in the low light of the library, Ellora could see the scarlet blush rising up Russ’s neck, ascending all the way to his forehead. 

“You’re a very attractive lady,” he said.  “Veryattractive.  I wouldn’t be lying if I said you were the most beautiful woman here.  I think your family’s jealous of more than just your money, Mrs. Milton.”

“Ellora,” she insisted, gazing up at him, finding at once softness and sheer lust in his eyes.

“Ellora,” he said, his breath rumbling like a grizzly’s growl.

The heat between them might have singed the eyebrows off a weaker woman, but Ellora wore their shared lust like a jewel.  “You’ve been so kind,” she said.

“You…”

She didn’t give him time to finish, launching herself at his lips, kissing him hard while his fingers felt their way up her side.  Her dress was a flimsy thing, though heavy with shimmering beads, and his fingertips soon met bare skin, searing it like a hot pan.

Russ broke away.

“Maybe we shouldn’t,” he whimpered like a loyal mutt.

But Ellora was already reaching around, unfastening her bra before letting the strap of her dress slip down her shoulder, slide down her arm.  “Oh Russ, darling, I rather think we should.”

His hot gaze followed a trail of naked skin left in the wake of her tumbling dress.  When her breasts were bare, he stared at them, transfixed, and that wolfish lust in his eyes gave her cause to grin zealously.  She took hold of his big hand and moved it to her breast, pressing it, making him squeeze.

The heat of his skin against her sensitive nipple ramped up Ellora’s wild desire.  She moaned softly, and he responded in kind, sliding down the couch and landing on the floor in front of her.  Like a desperate beast, Russ pulled her into his grip and sucked her nipple so hard she hissed at the sensation.

“Careful, careful,” she warned, pressing on his forehead, shifting him to the other breast.  “Too much too soon, sweety.”

He looked up at her with worry in his dark eyes.  “I’m sorry, Mrs. Milton. Did I hurt you?”

She smiled, trying not to laugh.  “Will you please call me Ellora?” 


MILF of the Groom is currently available from:

eXessica: http://www.excessica.com/books/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=42&products_id=563

1PFR: http://1placeforromance.com/romantic-fiction/wedding-heat-milf-of-the-groom/prod_8092.html

BookStrand: http://www.bookstrand.com/wedding-heat-milf-of-the-groom-mf

All Romance: http://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-weddingheatmilfofthegroom-846957-149.html

1Erotica: http://1eroticaebooks.com/male/female/wedding-heat-milf-of-the-groom/prod_2988.html

Coming Soon to more vendors!

To learn more about the Wedding Heat series, visit: http://weddingheat.wordpress.com/

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NEW ORLEANS by Cat Johnson



When I agreed to be my best friend’s maid of honor, I thought it would be fun. Maybe I’d even meet a nice, single guy at the reception. But now the bride is missing, I have the hang over from hell and it seems I may have accidentally had sex with the groom last night while pretending to be a stripper to spy on him at his bachelor party… Or maybe I didn’t.
It’s hard to tell since I can’t remember much past drinking that last Hurricane on Bourbon Street. There’s also this matter of the groom’s identical twin brother and the fact they have a habit of switching places.
I do know one thing, nothing is what it seems in New Orleans. Anything can happen…and it usually does.

EXCERPT (rated G)
I made the supreme sacrifice and lifted my head to try and see the rest of the room. After all, I was the maid of honor. I suppose checking to see if I’d lost the bride was the least I could do.
There was a lump under the covers in the other bed. Unless I’d picked up a stranger and brought him or her home, at least one member of our party was accounted for.
“Beth?” Wishful thinking on my part, but I croaked the possibly missing bride’s name as loudly as my pounding head and scratchy throat would allow, hoping the lump would respond.
“Ugh. Holy hell, I feel like crap. Did I get run over by a truck last night?” Marci’s muffled voice preceded the arm that snaked its way out from beneath the covers.
“I have no idea. Where are Jen and Beth?” I braced myself on one elbow and tried not to sway since the room seemed to be doing enough moving on its own.
“I don’t know.” Marci lifted the covers and peered under them. “Christ, my feet are sore.”
Come to think of it, I was pretty achy too, but it wasn’t my feet that were sore. It was a much more intimate area—one that hadn’t been used in quite a while. Not since I’d had my last steady boyfriend. Uh, oh.
“You guys okay?”
I heard the disembodied voice come from the vicinity of the bathroom. “Jen?”
“Yeah. I seem to have slept on the bathroom floor. But judging by what’s in the toilet, that was a good thing.” There was the sound of a flush, and then Jen stumbled out of the bathroom, holding on to the wall. “Hurricanes don’t look as good in the toilet the morning after.”
Phew, another one accounted for. Now all I needed was to hear Beth’s voice and I’d be the happiest hung over girl in the world. “Beth didn’t happen to be in the bathroom with you, did she?”
Jen frowned. “No. She’s not out here with you guys?”
Marci leaned over the edge of her bed and checked the floor. “Nope. Ugh, that was a bad move.” She pressed her hand to her head.
 “I think we lost her.” I looked from Marci to Jen, starting to really panic now. “What do we do?”
“Call her family?” Jen suggested.
I let out a snort. “And tell them what? I got drunk and misplaced their daughter? That I possibly left her somewhere to get killed or kidnapped?”
“Jen or I could call. We just have to be a little sneaky about it.” Marci glanced from me to Jen. “One of us can call their house and pretend we’re not with the others and ask if Beth’s there. I mean she grew up in New Orleans. That’s why we all had to fly our asses here from all over the country for the wedding. Maybe she went home to her family’s house last night after we passed out.”
“Let’s try calling her cell phone first.” I didn’t think any one of us currently had the capacity to lie to Beth’s parents, forget about her Marine Corps fiancĂ©.
“Good idea.” Jen, who was already standing, stumbled from the wall to the dresser where a purse sat next to the lamp. I recognized that purse. It was mine. That was good. One more piece of the puzzle found. When Jen pulled my phone out of it, my hopes rose a bit higher. She squinted at the readout, then hit a few buttons.
A vibrating in my pocket had me jumping. I may have been moving a little slowly but a feeling of dread descended upon me the moment Jen’s call to Beth’s phone made my ass vibrate.
“Crap.” I reached beneath me and pulled out a cell phone. “Why do I have Beth’s phone?”
“Wait, I remember that.” Marci held up a hand.
“Me too!” Jen nodded, then pressed her hand to her head and groaned.
Thank God. At least they could remember something. “What do you remember?”
“Beth was drunk and pissed at John for lying about having a stripper at his bachelor party. So you took Beth’s phone so she wouldn’t call her ex-boyfriend in retaliation.” Marci’s words started slowly but sped as the pieces started to fall into place.
I nodded. That did sound like something I would do. “Okay. That makes sense.”
“Wait. I remember more.” Jen squinted, as if it would wring the memories out of her alcohol soaked brain. Her gaze swung to me.
“So do I.” Marci stared at me now too.
I started to get a little worried. “What?”
“You don’t remember?” Marci asked.
“No.” Crap. I looked at Marci. “Why don’t you just tell me?”
Jen answered for them both. “Since you’re the only one John has never met, we sent you into his bachelor party as a spy dressed as a stripper.”
Uh, oh. This was starting to sound familiar to me, but in a detached kind of way. Kind of like it was the plot of a movie I’d watched only I couldn’t remember the ending. I glanced up and found them both watching me, wide-eyed. I glanced down at myself and noticed for the first time that though I was in my own pants, there was a corset making my boobs look two cup sizes larger. It was definitely stripper-worthy.
I noticed an uncomfortable presence between my ass cheeks and wiggled a bit. Reaching down I confirmed my suspicions. I was wearing a thong. I didn’t own a thong. And definitely not a red lace thong that matched the corset, which was the discovery I made when I peeked down the front of my jeans.
“Rose, what happened at the bachelor party?” Jen asked.
Memories swirled like a kaleidoscope. Music. A party. A man’s hands on my body. I didn’t have a chance to piece it all together before a knock on the door broke my concentration.
“Maybe it’s Beth.” I glanced at Jen and Marci.
Jen moved to open the door. When she backed into the room, a man I was pretty sure I knew though I couldn’t be sure followed her inside.
“It’s John,” Marci mouthed to me.
John. The groom. Probably looking for his missing bride because as the door slammed closed behind him it was pretty clear he’d come alone. Beth wasn’t with him.
His gaze found me. Self-consciously I tugged the top of the corset higher, but my boobs only popped up more so I decided to cut my losses and let my hands drop.
“Rose. Thank God, you’re awake.” He came directly to my bed and sat on the edge. Concern was written all over his face as he took my hand in his. “Are you all right?”
I managed a nod, but that was about it.
“I was so worried about you last night.” He cupped my chin as he leaned in and pressed his lips to mine.
I pulled back to find the room silent. Jen and Marci looked about as shocked as I was.
“Um, all right. What the hell happened last night?” Marci finally asked.
Since the groom was kissing me the day before his wedding while the bride was missing, I figured that was as good a question as any. And I certainly didn’t have the answer.
www.CatJohnson.net

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BLOOD GUILT by MARIE TREANOR - Out Now!


All this month, I'm celebrating the release of Blood Guilt! (It's the first of my new Blood Hunters series, following on from the Awakened by Blood trilogy.).

Celebrating tomorrow (Monday) at Bitten by Books - hope you can be there for party and contest!

Also, watch out for the Great Blood Guilt Excerpt contest starting on my blog tomorrow and running all week! Marie Treanor's Romantic Theme Party


BLOOD GUILT: Blood Hunters, Book 1
By MARIE TREANOR
Ebook $2.99, Out Now from AmazonAmazon UK and Barnes & Noble

Natural enemies, deadly attraction...

The first of a new vampire romance series, a sequel to the Awakened by Blood trilogy.

Mihaela, a fearless vampire hunter secretly haunted by loneliness and childhood tragedy, finds it difficult to adjust to the new world order where vampires are not always the bad guys. She's taking a much needed vacation in Scotland when she sees a little boy being chased through the streets of Edinburgh. Rescuing him brings bigger problems - two vampires from her past: Gavril, who killed her family; and the reclusive and troubled Maximilian, gifted Renaissance artist and one-time overlord of the most powerful undead community in the world. Maximilian once saved her life and now needs that favor returned.

The earth moves for Mihaela in more ways than one. From Scotland to Budapest and Malta, she  races against time to prevent a disastrous, vampire-induced earthquake and save an innocent yet powerful child – all while fighting a dreadful attraction to Maximilian, her only ally, whom she can’t afford to trust. For Maximilian, the hunter becomes a symbol of renewed existence, as he struggles to accept his past and rediscovers his appetite for blood and sex - and maybe even happiness.

*

(Here, Maximilian is dying after a drunken fight and Mihaela has made a deal with him - her blood to save his existence, in return for his help in locating her family's killer)

He lay perfectly still, watching her every move. Despite his tattered, modern clothes, he looked like some decadent, talented Renaissance youth. Which he probably had been.

Mihaela sank onto the bed beside him, and, willing her hand not to shake, she placed the point of the stake over his heart. Still, he didn’t move. It was possible that he couldn’t.

“I’ve killed many vampires,” she warned him, and wished her voice didn’t sound so husky.

A spark of humor, so faint as to be almost indistinguishable, lightened his pain-wracked eyes. “Then you have another advantage. I’ve never killed a hunter.”

Watching him for any sign of sudden attack, she leaned slowly over him, angling her head to offer him her throat. As his face disappeared from her vision, her tingling skin seemed to grow tighter. Since he had no breath, there was no warning before he touched her throat. She couldn’t suppress her gasp or her jerk of surprise. But still he didn’t move, just waited for her to settle and return to the same position. Again, his cool lips touched her neck. Shards of fear sprayed outward to every nerve-ending she possessed. At least she called it fear, because even that was easier to bear.

Tensing even further, she curled her fingers into a fist, around the air, around the stake, and waited for the pain of his bite.

Concentrate on the stake. It’s all that could save your life. Her neck prickled with sensation. It was his tongue, licking over her vein.

Oh Jesus Christ, help me…

“It will numb the pain,” he said unexpectedly, and the movement of his lips against her skin made her shudder. She managed to nod, and then his lips closed more strongly, like a lover’s kiss. It was hard to keep still, to ignore the damp heat forming between her thighs. His teeth grazed her vein, and bit.

Her mouth opened without permission, but at least her cry was silent. There wasn’t even pain to speak of, just the shock of his teeth sinking into her, and then the faint, strangely sensual pull of his mouth against her skin, scattering novel sensations through her entire body. Her vein seemed to contract; she could feel the blood being drawn out of her and into him. It was weird, cold, intriguing…and achingly pleasurable. His lips moved on her skin, his tongue lapped, his suck deepened and strengthened; and everything inside her, her very womb, seemed to pulse under the insistent tug of his mouth.

A tiny sound gurgled deep in her throat. She clung on to the stake, as if to sanity, while her free hand clutched at the quilt and then at his shirt for support. And then, it seemed, it was over.

The draw of blood stopped; his teeth detached from her throat, and he raised his head to examine her. His face seemed cloudy; his gray eyes had darkened and yet somehow blazed almost silver with a lust that drove straight between her legs.

“Hunter blood is sweet,” he whispered. “You taste…good.”

Without warning, he pushed her down onto the pillow and loomed over her. Panting, she tried to reposition the stake, but he was too close, and he gave her no time.

“More,” he said huskily and returned to her throbbing throat.

Since he half lay across her, heart to heart, there was little she could do. Her stake lay on its side between them, useless until she could draw it free and plunge it into his back. Except, God help her, she didn’t want to.

The slow, delicious pull of his mouth on her throat began again, but stronger this time and more rhythmic. It couldn’t have been more different from the act of violence she’d witnessed earlier when he’d killed a vampire almost instantly with his bite. The strong, slow, beats of his undead heart vibrated through her chest, as if speaking to her own, galloping pulse. Cords of pleasure seemed to have formed between his mouth and her sensitized breasts, squashed beneath the hardness of his chest, and all other pleasure points of her body. Between her legs was throbbing, aching lust. She began to move under his mouth, rubbing her breasts against him, circling her hips in search of the comfort she needed deep inside her.

My God, I’m going to orgasm from his bite. This isn’t possible. Oh God, he’s killing me, and I love it.

She couldn’t just give in to this urge to do nothing, to reach for more. It wasn’t in her nature to surrender, but she had never imagined it would be this hard to resist being slaughtered. Forcing herself, she dragged her hand and stake free from between their bodies. She found his back, and through his T-shirt, counted his vertebrae with her fingertips until she found the position of his heart.

His back, his whole body moved, undulating with the passage of her fingers, as if he welcomed her attentions as caresses. Delicately, she placed the pointed end of the stake...


:) Thanks for reading! Hope you're having a great weekend!

Marie



Natural enemies, deadly attraction:
BLOOD GUILT, Out Now.



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Wedding Heat: Pretty Cousin

Where to begin, where to begin?

Well, Wedding Heat: Pretty Cousin is now available--I guess it's best to start with the basics.  Pretty Cousin is the fourth story in the Wedding Heat series, but it was actually the FIRST story that came to mind when I conceptualized this series.

Because... okay, well... a lot of people have crushes on their cousins.

Right?

I definitely have one cousin I'm a little sweet on--not that I'd act on it, and she's straight anyway, but fantasy is a huge driving factor in erotica.  I wouldn't surrender to temptation the way Vanessa and Maggie do in Pretty Cousin, but I sure as hell enjoyed writing about it!

The last thing I want to mention before sharing the blurb and an excerpt from Wedding Heat: Pretty Cousin is that, because this title falls into the "pseudo-incest" category (the girls are not blood relatives), it will not be available from ALL the usual vendors.  All Romance and a few other e-tailers don't allow this sort of content on their sites, BUT a whole lot of other sites do allow it, and you can check out a preliminary list at the end of this post.


Vanessa’s had a crush on her cousin Maggie since before she knew what love was.  They were inseparable growing up—that is, until Vanessa came out as lesbian.  That confession sparked a rift between the girls that stretched out more than ten years

Two days before Maggie’s wedding, she meets up with Vanessa for the first time since they were teenagers and makes a confession of her own: Maggie’s mother was adopted by Vanessa’s grandparents.  They aren’t related, not by blood.  They aren’t really cousins at all.

Will Vanessa give in to her lust and try to seduce Maggie so close to the wedding?  Or will Maggie give Vanessa no choice?

WARNINGS: This title contains graphic language and explicit lesbian sex between non-blood-related cousins.


Word Count: 8,000


EXCERPT:

“I can’t.”

Vanessa spoke so softly she could barely hear her own voice.  Shaking her head, she let her gaze wander the length of Maggie’s naked flesh.  God, what a body!  Maggie’s thighs were like cream, two milky paths culminating in pinkness hidden beyond a trim strip of hair.

“I can’t, Mags, I just can’t.”

“Can’t what?” Maggie whined, reaching for the soap dish indented in the shower wall and pulling herself to standing. She opened the tiny bottle of shower gel and drizzled it across her breasts.  “You can’t wash me?  You can’t just wash me?”

The way Maggie said that word, wash, made it seem like not such a big deal.  Still, Vanessa fought with herself: should she let go and abandon her good sense, or obey moral law and fight her urges and Maggie’s advances?

Maggie didn’t give her much choice.  Grabbing Vanessa’s sopping shirtsleeves, the girl pulled her in for a kiss. She didn’t even see it coming.  Her mind was clouded, hazy, lost in the heady sensation of Maggie’s tongue whipping around her mouth.

Moaning, Maggie pressed her big breasts against Vanessa’s front.  They writhed together under the shower’s hot flow as the mango-scented body wash began to froth between them.  In the midst of their frenzy Vanessa felt the tiny bubbles working their way through her undershirt and popping against her nipples.  The sensation defied description.  All she wanted was more.

“You’re such a good kisser!” Maggie cried as Vanessa licked her wet neck.  “Oh god, that’s amazing!”

Vanessa hesitated for an instant, assuring herself that Maggie wasn’t really her cousin, and then ran her hands across the supple length of the girl’s waiting flesh, tracing the perimeter, exploring all the boundaries.  “I want to lick your pussy so bad, Mags.”

“Do it.”  Maggie’s voice was tight and high, like she was so desperate for this to happen she could barely speak.  “Do it now!” 


Wedding Heat: Pretty Cousin is available from:

eXcessica: http://www.excessica.com/books/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=17&products_id=562

Bookstrand: http://www.bookstrand.com/wedding-heat-pretty-cousin-ff

Rainbow Ebooks: http://www.rainbowebooks.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=7329

1 Place for Romance: http://1placeforromance.com/womanlove/wedding-heat-pretty-cousin/prod_7976.html

1 Erotica Ebooks: http://1eroticaebooks.com/female/female/wedding-heat-pretty-cousin/prod_2958.html

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Wedding-Heat-Pretty-Cousin-ebook/dp/B0089XE2Z4/ref=dp_return_2?ie=UTF8&n=133140011&s=digital-text

Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Wedding-Heat-Pretty-Cousin-ebook/dp/B0089XE2Z4/ref=tag_stp_s2_edpp_url

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/169891

For more information about the Wedding Heat series, check out its devoted site: http://weddingheat.wordpress.com/


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Anniversary Excerpt: my first book (!)

Today marks the day my first book was published back in 2007. So here's to Brownies, Bodies, and Breaking the Code, the book that set me on this crazy path.




SETUP:

Jessie Patrokus has just ventured into the dating world again after the death of her husband and had signed up with an online match-matcher, only to find a match who wouldn’t take ‘no’ for an answer.


"So what happened next?" Gus asked.

"I kept getting email. The guy from Silver Harmony just wouldn't give up. So I asked Silver Harmony to change my screen identity."

"But he figured it out and continued sending email?"

I nodded. "The thing that was really spooky was…" My voice trailed off as I decided to voice my fear.

He rapped my knuckles lightly with the swizzle stick. "Yes?"

"How does he know my name?"

"The service--" He stopped when I shook my head. "They don't give out your name?"

"No. You use a screen identity. I never used my real name in any of the screen identities they set up for me. The identities are like nicknames."

"Really? What did you use?" He resumed tapping on the table.

"Oh, I just made things up. You know, 'FlowerGirl' and 'ColdBuns' and stuff like that." I saw his quick grin. "It's like any online site, you can make up all kinds of information about yourself." I frowned. Something was niggling at my brain. If I could make up stuff, presumably the guy who matched me could do the same. But how could he match me so precisely? His answers on the survey had been almost a ninety-five percent match. The others who'd matched me were seventy percent at the most. No one could make up anything that matched me so well. If he hadn't hacked into their database, and I doubted he had, how had he found out my answers? There had to be a clue there but I wasn't sure what it was.

"Hold on." I pulled out Barry the Blackberry and thumbed a quick note, ignoring Colcannon's exasperated look. I tucked Barry back in my purse and refocused on the conversation. "I've got such an unusual last name that it's a dead giveaway. If anyone knew where I lived and my last name, they could find me. So I made sure my screen identity was nothing like my real name."

"So how do you get the email?" He resumed tapping my hand with the plastic stick, obviously deep in thought.

"People send email to the mail servers at Silver Harmony and they forward it on." I sipped my now-cool coffee. "His emails have all come to me via Silver Harmony, but--"

He looked back at the screen. "He used your name. He addressed it to Jessie."

I nodded. "Yeah." I decided to finally voice my fear. "The question is--how did he get my real name? And what else does he know about me?"




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The Gentle Wind's Caress released


My historical novel, The Gentle Wind's Caress, has been released in paperback and in digital formats. Yay!

The Blurb:Halifax, 1876. On the death of her mother and sister, Isabelle Gibson is left to fend for herself and her brother in a privately-run workhouse. After the matron's son attempts to rape her, Isabelle decides to escape him and a life of drudgery by agreeing to marry a moorland farmer she has never met. But this man, Farrell, is a drunkard and a bully in constant feud with his landlord, Ethan Harrington. When Farrell bungles a robbery and deserts her, Isabelle and Ethan are thrown together as she struggles to save the farm. Both are married and must hide their growing love. But despite the secrecy, Isabelle draws strength from Ethan as faces from the past return to haunt her and a tragedy is set to strike that will change all of their lives forever.


The except:‘He’ll be here soon.’ Hughie sat by the fire darning a sock. ‘The snow has likely held him up.’‘What keeps him out night after night?’ She stamped her foot in frustration. ‘He drinks more than a sailor does on his first day back at port!’Hughie grinned.The sound of scratching made Isabelle frown. The snowstorm grew in intensity. She could no longer see the outbuildings. The scratching sounded again. ‘What is that?’Hughie shrugged. ‘The trees on the window upstairs?’Isabelle stepped away from the window, nibbling her fingertips. There would be no market day today. She went to walk into the scullery when a thump hit the back door. She opened it and cried out as Farrell landed at her feet.Hughie dashed to her side and together they stared at her husband’s bloody form.‘Heaven’s above!’ Isabelle bent to touch him. He stirred and moaned. ‘Help me bring him inside, Hughie.’They grabbed him under the arms and dragged him down the step and onto the kitchen floor. His coat was missing and his wet woollen vest cloaked him like another skin.Farrell opened and closed his eyes. ‘Isabelle…’‘What happened to you?’ She took a dishcloth from the table and knelt to wipe the blood oozing from a cut in his forehead. She gestured to Hughie. ‘Get me some blankets off the bed and a pillow too. He’s too heavy to lift, so I’ll have to make a bed in here for him.’As Hughie ran to do as she bid, Isabelle quickly made him a cup of sweet tea and held his head up to pour a little into his mouth. Next, she rubbed Farrell’s cold hands between her own. Hughie ran into the room with the items she asked for, and Isabelle placed the pillow under Farrell’s head. ‘Heat a warming pan, Hughie.’Farrell’s eyes fluttered, he moaned between blue lips.Isabelle ran into the scullery and found an old pair of gloves. She returned and tugged them onto his icy hands. ‘Lord, what have you done to yourself?’He murmured and opened his eyes. She tucked the blanket around him more securely. ‘Lie still.’‘No…’She put the cup to his lips again. ‘Drink this now. You need to get warm.’He slowly eased himself up onto one elbow. ‘Got to hide.’ He wheezed and then coughed. His split lip began to bleed freely again.‘Hide?’ She frowned. ‘Why?’‘They’ll find me here!’ He tried to get up, but she pushed him back down. ‘Who?’‘Had to run…’Hughie knelt down beside them. ‘Has he lost his mind?’‘Heaven knows, silly man. It’d be hardly surprising if he has, being out in this weather all night.’ She made Farrell drink again. ‘Take his boots off, Hughie.’‘No!’ Farrell reared up. ‘I must hide.’ He gripped Isabelle’s arms until they hurt. His eyes were wide and frightened. ‘I can’t hide here. They’ll find me.’In a panic, Isabelle glanced up at the door as though the riders from Hell would burst through it any moment. She flung away his hands, alarmed. ‘What have you done?’ Her voice sounded high to her ears.‘They nearly caught me. Had to run.’ Farrell panted, throwing off the blanket, struggling to sit up. ‘They saw my face. I must go!’Isabelle stood and hugged herself, fighting rising terror. ‘Tell me,’ she whispered.




To Purchase:

Amazon USA
http://www.amazon.com/Gentle-Winds-Caress-Anne-Brear/dp/1908483326/ref=sr_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338918193&sr=1-5
Amazon UK
http://www.amazon.co.uk/-/e/B00705A120

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