Wednesday, June 28, 2017

#AuthorLove Danita Minnis #Romance


Former MI6 agent Xavier Quinn would say that you're daft if you think he will stop killing for a living. But that is exactly what is about to happen. Very soon now, Quinn will start killing to stay alive. On the run after taking out the wrong man, Quinn would die a happy man if he could just live long enough to ruin the Parliament member who set him up.
Layla, a 2,000 year old vampire with a moral code, has other plans for the contract killer. When she awakens to the sound of a dark rising, she enlists Quinn to join her on a mission to save humanity from her twin sister Tamara.
But Quinn is just the kind of man that a cold-blooded killer like Tamara needs in her world. A man like Quinn, who never believed in humanity, has only one belief; self-preservation. Being a vampire sounds much better than staying human in the game of kill or be killed. Will he stay alive long enough to find out how Layla's love can change the equation?
Excerpt:
Padding into the living room, she watched as the door across the suite opened and two men walked in. The first man was big and round enough to block her view of his thinner companion. Though she chose to remain visible facing them across the large living area, they had not yet seen her standing in front of the bedroom door. The second man closed and locked the door behind him.
They didn’t belong here in this pure, white living room which gave the impression of being up in the clouds. They wore stiff, dark clothes like Aurelius, but they were not like him at all. She could smell hatred. There was no other feeling in them. They had killed many, and they were here for Aurelius.
Ah, praises to Anubis. They are ripe.
She sighed and closed the bedroom door behind her.
The murderers turned.
“Where is Quinn?” The heavy man smiled, while his silent companion went around the room closing the drapes on the panoramic view of Luxor.
Quinn; the name suited Aurelius in this life, nimble and smart, as her Roman commander had been.
“He is bathing.” She smiled as if the two jackals had just come for a visit.
“And what is your name, love?” The heavy man strolled across the expanse of white carpet to walk around the u-shaped sectional sofa. His bulbous red-veined nose bore the colors and marks of a trade route freshly drawn on papyrus. His blood would not be sweet, he drank spirits too often, but there would be enough to satisfy her craving.
“I am Lay-laah.” She met the man half-way, near the sofa, keeping her hands to her sides. She must not alarm them. But she could not stop the bloodlust, she needed so much more blood, and her fingers flexed in excitement, aching to tear him open.
“Well, Lay-laah.” The man chuckled, trying to mimic her accent. “Quinn’s got good taste,” He glanced over his shoulder to his companion, who now held something in his hand. The thin man pointed the metal spear at her.
“Well, this is unfortunate,” the heavy man said. “We came for Quinn, but we’ve got two for the price of one.” He took a similar metal spear out of his jacket and pointed it at her. “It must be fate.”
“Fate. Yes-sss.” Layla grabbed him by the neck. The motion was so swift the man still smiled at her while she sank her teeth into his leathery flesh.
She experienced a moment of discomfort as the heavy man’s metal spear struck her in the chest several times. She rose above him and he toppled backward with a shout and fell over the low glass table in front of the sofa.
The thin man rumbled in disbelief at what must be to him an unexpected turn of events.
It was ever this way; humans could not fathom a being like her, they did not believe in monsters. Neither had she, long ago. But there were many things in the world - seen and unseen - that this killer would fear if he knew of them.

Danita Minnis Bio:
Born and raised in the heart of New York City, Danita is a singer, writer and lover of romance. Her fourth novel, Dark Love Rising is her first vampire romance. She is the author of the ghostly love story Adderley’s Bride and the Cardiff novels, Falcon’s Angel and Love Entwined.
Mystery, mayhem, the fantastic and the fey are as intriguing as Siberian Huskies - shout out to the Khan Man. One more hour with her laptop and Danita is living the dream.
Connect with Danita:
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Tuesday, June 27, 2017

#AuthorLove Brenda Spark #Romance



Starved for blood, vampire, Nicholai Peterhof is greatly relieved when two tourists, in Russia for the Christmas holiday, decide to grace his restaurant, but one sip from the pretty brunette and his world is forever turned upside down. Juliette Staint-John is everything he could have asked for in a heartmate; pretty, smart, built with curves in all the right places…and totally unavailable.

Juliette doesn’t want anything to do with the handsome, young-looking Nicholai. As if their differences aren’t enough, the acute grief over the loss of loved ones keeps her heart guarded. He may be her fantasy, but that’s all he can ever be.

To get past Juliette’s defenses and in order to keep her safe, Nicholai must prove himself worthy of her love and trust. Unbeknownst to the couple, her personal demons are not the only ones threatening their relationship. Hiding virtually unseen by the vampires, Demon Royalty plots to destroy not only the couple but the entire vampire breed. Luckily, Nicholai will do anything for Juliette—even if it means sacrificing himself.

Excerpt:

  
Julie’s gaze swept the landscape. The moon’s rays glittered on the snowy bows. The birch trees stood with their trunks painted white to match their limbs. Thick pine branches held fast under the weight of the new fallen snow, making them appear as if they wore white blankets made of virginal cotton about each limb. Sparkling mounds cluttered the ground between the trees, hiding the forest’s treasures beneath.
Save the sound of the hooves pounding on the ground, they journeyed through the silent night to a clearing in the trees. Nicholai clicked to his stallion, and with a flick of the reins, the steed increased into a rolling canter up a steep incline. Julie’s thighs pushed against the sides of the horse as she tried to match the new rhythm.
Nicholai’s breath warmed her ear when he spoke. “Not too much further. It’s right up ahead.”
“What’s up ahead?” Just as the words left Julie’s mouth, they crested over the ridge.
The frozen valley below took her breath away. A glaciate waterfall stood still as a statue against the rocky terrain. The cascading water, stopped as if by magic, reflected the moon’s soft rays and cast tiny prisms on the snow below.
Julie’s breath hitched in her throat. She took in the serene beauty of the land as they cruised at a slow trot. Debris rolled under Kedar’s hoofs. It created a hollow rattle in the night, barely audible to Juliette.
When they reached the valley, Nicholai pulled up the stallion and handed the reins to Julie. She patted the horse’s steaming neck as her lover dismounted with a fluid grace. He turned, grabbed Kedar’s reins, then reached up for Julie. Her thick coat seemed to melt as his strong hands clasped around her waist. She put her hands on his shoulders, and the bulge of muscle under his coat played under her fingers when he helped her down. A thrill went through her body.
Her breath frosted the air in a white plume. The lovers held each other, his hands about her waist, hers resting on his shoulders. Quiet as the moon above, they stared deeply into each other’s eyes. Nicholai captured her lips in a gentle caress that welcomed her to this special place.

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Author Bio:


Brenda Sparks has always loved all things spooky and enjoys incorporating paranormal elements in her writing. She refuses to allow pesky human constraints to get in the way of telling the story. Luckily the only thing limiting her stories is her imagination. Her characters are strong, courageous, and she adores spending time with them in their imaginary world.

Her idea of a perfect day is one spent in front of a computer with a hot cup of coffee, her fingers flying over the keys to send her characters off on their latest adventure.

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Monday, June 26, 2017

Why Barbara Bettis Loves to Write Medieval Romance

Happy Medieval Monday. My guest today is Barbara Bettis, former journalist turned romance writer.
I’m not sure what calls to me so strongly from the Middle Ages, but whatever it is, has done so my entire life. I think it may be rooted in the stories I devoured when I first started reading. Myths, folk stories from different cultures, tales of Knights of the Round Table, they all captured my imagination. It was a different, fascinating world where anything was possible—in theory. Throughout school, history was a favorite subject, and I loved to delve into the events—and lives of the people—of the past.
As I did so, I recognized that the knightly tales of daring do or die from my childhood were set amidst times of turmoil, deprivation of the many and reward of the few. I usually root for the underdog, so when my studies introduced me to mercenaries and the bad reputation many of them enjoyed (and they probably did enjoy them), I immediately thought, “But they all must not have been bad. What of the ones who fought to better themselves and didn’t practice cruelty?”
Life was not easy for most people. In the eyes of society at that time, bettering oneself usually meant acquiring land. Few folks had the means or opportunity to do so. Later in the Medieval period, landed-society’s restrictions didn’t allow for commoners to aspire to knighthood, except for very limited exceptions. But in the earlier days, it wasn’t all that unusual for a commoner to rise by reason of bravery, strength, and audacity. All but one of my stories have featured such mercenaries who strive to better themselves by acquiring power and land.
All my stories feature strong women, not at all the norm of the period. Yet discoveries tell us there were more strong women than we realize, although most of them were wed or in the church. I imbue my heroines with strength of character given the times in which they lived.
I love creating the stories of strong heroines we women would like to be and of heroes we’d love to live for.
Author Bio:
Barbara Bettis grew up in the rural Midwest, where reading was a reward for chores well done. So you can bet she did her chores well—and fast. She loved history and English. She’d intended to major in English, but when she arrived at her small, Liberal Arts college, one of the European history professors was on a Rhodes Scholarship. Once she met the English professors, she defected.
Thus, she received her BA in English with a strong minor in history and her Master’s in English. After working as a newspaper reporter and editor, Barb returned to college and taught English and journalism, later earning a doctorate in Higher Education with an emphasis in journalism.
After her husband died, some former students lured her into their critique group, where she began writing fiction. A trip to Scotland and England solidified her love of the Isles (the small tour group set up a ‘Barb’s Castle Alert’ on their train journeys). Her earlier fascination with the Middle Ages led her into her medieval stories, where she’s been roaming around ever since.

Now that she’s retired from teaching, her ambition is to write an angst-ridden, tortured hero set in the High Middle Ages, but somehow her guys end up with inappropriate senses of humor. Perhaps in the future….         www.barbarabettis.blogspot.com

Saturday, June 24, 2017

#AuthorLove Iris Blobel #Romance


Zach Taylor, an escort in Sydney, living in Hobart, enlists the help of Natasha Peterson when his teenage friend, Mia, runs away. He soon finds out that the ‘dragon’ is really more of a kitten. And although Natasha, Mia’s teacher, is attracted to him as well, she has her own problems to deal with, not to mention her initial reaction to Zach’s occupation.
Will Zach’s job keep him from a chance to be with Natasha?
Life is good for teenager Mia Levesque. But when Darren Schuster shows up in Hobart, she knows something is up once Sophie and Mark cut their weekend away short and rush home in the middle of the night. When Sophie won’t answer Mia’s questions, emotions run high, and Zach confirms Darren’s identity to Mia. Disappointed, angry, and feeling alone, Mia runs away.
Will life settle back into a routine for Mia once she finds out about the stranger in her life?
New Beginnings have given the Levesque girls a new start in life, will More Beginnings be another chance for them?


  ♥♦♥  EXCERPT ♥♦♥
Zach Taylor’s young neighbour, Mia, let out a long sigh as she joined him on his front porch and sat next to him on the swing. Enjoying a cool lemonade, he invited her to grab a soft drink from the fridge as well. It was a warm summer day, and the air showed no sign of cooling down. A lot of people in Hobart were weary of the unusual hot spell for the very southern Australian city.
With another hefty sigh, Mia raked through her long, blond hair and stared into the distance. “Honestly, Zach, she’s a dragon. I’m sure she does it on purpose. She doesn’t like me. She thinks I’m spoilt.”
The dragon in question was Miss Peterson, Mia’s high school English teacher. There was no doubt that Mia liked school, and she enjoyed her classes. And even though English wasn’t her worst subject, it certainly was the toughest one, with Miss Peterson piling on homework one after the other.
Zach took a sip of his drink before he replied, “Hey, pumpkin, settle down. What’s that supposed to mean you’re ‘spoilt’?”
She lifted her shoulder in a slight shrug. “You know!”
Raising his brows, he replied, “Actually I don’t know! Isn’t she Sophie’s good friend?”
Another shrug. “Kind of, I suppose. They used to do the boxing stuff together, and since Soph’s carrying a baby, they go and enjoy coffee and cake instead every once in a while.”

Ignoring his chuckle, she went inside and helped herself to cold lemonade. She opened the can with a simple click as she returned outside and took a long sip.
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Friday, June 23, 2017

#AuthorLove Kathleen Rowland #Romance


Blurb—Unholy Alliance
A decade ago, Tori Rourke, and her cousin, Vivienne, ran from the Irish mob after witnessing a brutal murder. Tori was framed by the mob, and while she served time in prison, she worried that the killer, Seamus McGinn, had kidnapped her missing cousin.
Attorney Grady D. Fletcher, defender of the wrongly condemned, appeals Tori’s case and wins her release. Now, going by Victoria Morningstar, she runs a food truck from a seedy waterfront neighborhood, hoping to find her cousin's kidnapper.
When Grady agrees to defend a new client, Samuel Peterson, who’s been accused of beating to death the wife of a noted professor, the evidence mounts. The professor is missing, as well as his laptop that contains data dangerous to national security.
And Seamus McGinn is back, and rumors of a massive annihilation is about to begin. As they race to assist the FBI, the bonds between Grady and Tori are about to be tested. It becomes clear Grady and Tori are falling fast for each other, but what to do about it is a different story. He’s a divorced dad who wants more time with his kid. She brings danger to his front door.
Grady has questions of his own; Is Vivienne at the center of the mob’s operation? How much will it cost Tori before she learns the truth? All Grady knows is the biggest danger is the one standing right behind you.

Excerpt—
“Don’t let the anxiety of freedom consume you.”  Attorney Grady Donahue Fletcher clenched his teeth and rehearsed what he’d say to his client, Victoria Morningstar. He’d won her appeal and drove to pick her up at Gladstone Penitentiary. “At least you won’t be placed in solitary.” That was worse.
Six months earlier Grady had phoned a reporter at the Los Angeles Globe. "Drew Barker. Grady Fletcher here.”
“Ah, the lawyer. Calling about a tip?”
“I am. Here's something you can investigate. Tori Morningstar, did she murder Irene Brennan?"
"I wrote that story many years back," the journalist had said. “I assume you have new discoveries.”
"Fraud, illegal testimony. Do you want the story first?" A second passed. "Otherwise, I'll call the Orange County Guardian."
"Okay, okay. We want it."
Three days later Grady had a hand in writing the first article in Drew Barker’s column. "The public labeled Tori Morningstar as an undesirable. Not black and poor, but disfavored, accused, incarcerated, and wrongly condemned. Her cellphone has been recovered. Her call to 911 identified her voice and substantiated screams of the victim in the background. Could she have beaten someone while speaking to dispatch at the same time?"
The reporter had written the second article. "People who get their ideas about criminal lawyers from TV probably would be disappointed in Grady Fletcher. He lacks flash but stands up straight, his posture neither ramrod nor slouched. He doesn't smoke, doesn't wear thousand dollar suits. His voice is soft and low, one of his assets. He speaks truth with a voice inviting confidences."
As nice as that was, Grady’s stomach cramped over pressure and strain from Drew Barker’s final article with the headline, Tori Morningstar, Released Today. Picked up by the online service, Newser, KTLA, and CBS Los Angeles, they planned to broadcast his arrival to escort his client from Gladstone.
Tori’s decade-long prison sentence ended today but with a sobering fear over tomorrow.
When was a July morning this hot? Grady balanced her release papers on his lap as he rolled up one sleeve then the other while gripping the damp steering wheel. Sweat blossomed on his throbbing forehead, wrapped like a python’s grip. He adjusted the dial for the AC and embraced the challenge of helping another client get back on track. Embrace and conquer. Or at least sound like it.
You will find all book links right here:
A little about Kathleen Rowland—
Book Buyers Best finalist Kathleen Rowland is devoted to giving her readers fast-paced, high-stakes suspense with a sizzling love story sure to melt their hearts.  Writing a romantic suspense Irish American series for Tirgearr Publishing, Deadly Alliance is followed by Unholy Alliance with a release date of March 29, 2017.  Keep an icy drink handy while reading these hot stories.
Other books are sweet new adult such as Lily’s Pad and the Intervenus Series: A Brand New Address and Betrayal at Crater’s Edge
Kathleen used to write computer programs but now writes novels.   She grew up in Iowa where she caught lightning bugs, ran barefoot, and raced her sailboat on Lake Okoboji.  Now she wears flip-flops and sails with her husband, Gerry, on Newport Harbor but wishes there were lightning bugs in California.
Kathleen exists happily with her witty CPA husband, Gerry, in their 70’s poolside retreat in Southern California where she adores time spent with visiting grandchildren, dogs, one bunny, and noisy neighbors.  While proud of their five children who’ve flown the coop, she appreciates the luxury of time to write.  If you’d enjoy news,  sign up for Kathleen’s newsletter at:

Thursday, June 22, 2017

#AuthorLove Patricia Preston #Romance


Back Cover Copy:
In the Southern town of Lafayette Falls, a new life brings together a woman with everything to lose and a doctor with everything to prove.

When a sickly infant is surrendered at the Lafayette Falls Medical Center, and orphaned soon after, pediatrician Aaron Kendall arranges to adopt him. After a painful divorce, the busy baby doc is about to realize his own dream of becoming a father when the baby’s beautiful estranged aunt turns up. She doesn't exactly approve of the Kendall bachelor pad complete with Aaron's cranky dad and wacky brother, forcing Aaron to form a risky alliance with her.

Country singer-songwriter Lia Montgomery barely knew her half-sister, but she's determined her tiny nephew goes to a good home. If only she fit the bill herself, but her stressful life on the road is no place for a baby. Yet despite her misgivings, as she gets to know Aaron, she realizes the smart and sexy doctor is everything a child could want in a dad and more unsettling, everything she's ever hoped for in a man. After all she's put him through, is it too late to form a family and maybe put a song in the good doctor's heart?

Excerpt:
Aaron looked across the table at his brother and for a moment, all the fear and heartache bottled up inside him exposed itself in his voice. “I can’t go through losing a son for the second time.”
Stevie’s brow netted in a worried frown as he sat up straight. “Okay.” He tented his fingers. “So you’ve gotta get tight with the girl.”
“What are you talking about?” Aaron continued to squash the aluminum can. “I have nothing in common with Lia Montgomery.”
“You have the baby,” Stevie pointed out. “I know that’s not what you want, but it is what it is. And you need to make the most of it. Bro, women are not that hard. Listen to me. You’ve got this chick whose sister just died so she’s got all this guilt and grief going on. And then there’s the sister’s sick little baby. Okay, so what’s Lia gonna do? I mean, she’s family. She’s gotta do something or she’s gonna feel like crap about herself.”
“Stevie—” Aaron tried to cut in.
“You’re going at this ass-backwards by trying to scare her off. How’s that working for you? Acting like a jerk? No wonder she wants the baby transferred.”
Aaron threw the ball of crushed aluminum at Stevie, who caught it. “Just putting the truth out there,” Stevie said. “Of course, I know why you’re an asshole, but she doesn’t.”
Aaron glared at his kid brother, but he didn’t say anything.
“You gotta put on your sad face. Like this.” Stevie’s face crumpled so that he looked on the verge of tears. “It works every time. I promise.” He grinned. “You need to say you’re sorry for how things went today. Keep on the sad face. Then you tell her you really could use some help because the baby doesn’t have any clothes.”
“What? He’s in an incubator. He doesn’t need clothes.”
“It’s not about the baby needing clothes. For chrissakes, do you know nothing about women? It’s about shopping. The magic word. Shopping,” Stevie reiterated. “Tell her you’d like for her to pick out some clothes for the baby and, hey, decorate the nursery, too. She’ll go wild. Shopping for baby stuff. That’s like mainlining heroin for women.
“Tell her you want her to pick out some toys, too. And then you go from sad face to hopeful face. Like a dog waiting for a treat. And you say that with her help, you think you can be the best dad ever. Bingo! You win! She’ll be thrilled because she’ll get to feel good about herself and she’s getting to help with the baby. You got her hook, line, and sinker.”
“That’s crazy.”
“What’s crazy is you sitting out here, covered in sweat, having a pity party about the past. You’re missing the opportunity of a lifetime if you know what I mean. Call her.”
“I can’t call her. I don’t have her number.”
“You didn’t get her number? Holy shit.” Stevie threw the ball of aluminum back at Aaron who caught it. “You know, that’s standard protocol.”
“Maybe,” Aaron replied. “But in this case, she’s not available.”
Stevie leaned forward. “Every chick is available if you play your cards right, bro.”


Buy Links:

Barnes and Noble   http://ow.ly/vuIs30brDgY

Author Bio: 
Award-winning author Patricia Preston writes mainstream romance, historical romance and comic short stories. She is represented by the Seymour Agency. She is the author of a mainstream contemporary romances, Love Heals All, for Kensington Books/Lyrical Press imprint. She has several other e-book titles available including a historical romance, TO SAVE A LADY, set in the French Quarter during the Battle of New Orleans. She also has a short story anthology, DIXIE DARLINGS, available in print. Besides writing she loves music, photography, graphic design, and visiting her favorite historical locales including the French Quarter and the Natchez Trace.

You can visit her website at www.patricia-preston.com
Follow her on Amazon  and BookBub

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

#AuthorLove Mia Jo Celeste #Romance


  
If you write fiction, you’ll probably agree with Robert Peck’s assessment that fiction is folks. He wrote a book by the same name. In it he suggests that before you type “Chapter One,” do your homework and get to know your characters thoroughly.
Many other writing experts give the same advice, but how do you do it? James N. Frey in “How to Write a Damn Good Novel” gives these suggestions:
  • Write a biography on your main character(s)
  • Have your leads journal—write about their life and how they feel about it.
  • Imagine you’re a psychotherapist intent on understanding the character lying on your couch.

“Find your character’s ruling passion,” Frey says. In other words, “what drives them.”
My critique partner, who comes from a military background, takes a different spin on the interview process. She imagines herself as airport security. She orders each of my characters to turn out their pockets and she runs each piece of luggage through high-tech scans. Then she and her virtual commandos escort “said character” to an interrogation room to discuss each found object.
“Explain the purpose of this object,” she commands. “You’re carrying it because?” Her grilling unearths a wealth of information. (I’m certain she missed her calling.)
In “GMC, Goal, Motivation and Conflict,” Debra Dixon recommends another interviewing technique. She asks her critique partner to interview her as she plays each character. Dixon says, “Spend time developing your characters beyond their physical aspects. Ask that important question: Who is your book about? She advocates getting your characters to answer these four core questions:
1.)  Who are you?
2.)   What is your goal? (What do you really want?)
3.)   Why do you want that goal?
4.)  What is stopping you from achieving it? 
When I wrote Other Than, a Gaslamp Fantasy/ Paranormal Historical Romance,
I spent a lot time interviewing my lead characters and searching their pockets.  I hope you’ll see the evidence in the blurb and excerpt.
Excerpt:
He materialized in the inky shadow.
Or rather his apparition did. His ghostly frame hovered before her, sinuous and lithe. Against his shadowed form, the string glimmered like liquid silver. Slowly he unwrapped her, tossing the spectral bands to the floor until a coil lay between him and her.
Something inside her chest fluttered. “You followed me.”
An accusation.
He nodded. With a slight shrug, he spread his hands. “You shouldn’t be alone.”
She wanted to turn, giving him her back, but her betraying gaze remained fixated upon him. When he paced around her, she waved him away. “Don’t.”
He caught her hand and placed an insubstantial kiss in her palm. “Let me help you…please.”
A gallant gesture, perhaps, but her skin-slider sensitivity noted the rigidity of his stance, the twitch along his jaw, and the slight narrowing of his eyes. How could he think of helping her when he was in so much pain?
Ordinarily, she might be grateful. Might…if loss hadn’t hollowed her.
She ripped her cooling flesh from his spectral arms. “I don’t deserve kindness.”
“Good.” He gave her a rakish smirk. “Because I’m not kind.”
She shook her head, biting back the emerging smile that had no place on her countenance. She couldn’t be civil, couldn’t risk the involvement. “I can’t go on like this—stuck betwixt life and death.”
“You must. Don’t you see, sweet dove? You’re beyond both. You’re immortal. Like me.”
Back cover Copy
It only takes one drink from the Water of Immortality to kill Evie Woods—halfway. Trapped in undead flesh, the world’s last skin-slider wakens on an island purgatory where a cursed spring bubbles with immortality, and zombie cannibals crave living flesh. Her only hope of escape rests in the hands of the one man who would see her fail. Lord Victor Lowell, the man of her dreams and darkest nightmares. Contrary and intractable, Victor preys on others to maintain his angelic charisma and preternatural prowess.
Trapped in an ever escalating war they can’t stop, Victor and Evie fight time for a cure, but as the long days pass, blackness tears at Evie, ripping her thoughts from her one memory at a time. Victor will do whatever it takes to prevent her from deteriorating into a rotting husk, even if it means dooming himself, but Evie won’t surrender his soul without a fight.
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I’m Mia Jo Celeste and I’d love to talk writing or books with you. You can find me by following the links on this page. Thanks.
My Links
Amazon author page amazon.com/author/miaceleste
Facebook fb.me/ Mia.Jo.Celeste

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

#AuthorLove with Linda O'Connor #Romance


PERFECTLY SKEPTICAL by @LindaOConnor98

Back Cover Copy:
Dr. Brianna Scott looked forward to sleeping away her staycation, until a lucky windfall meant an upgrade to palm trees, an ocean view . . . and the sexy Dr. Matt Gaelen. She’ll play and have fun, but can a holiday fling really turn into a soul mate for life? Doubtful.

Matt has no radar for sniffing out gold-diggers and protecting his heart. Until now. Brianna is more turned off than turned on by his wealth. What are his chances of getting her to overlook it? Dubious at best.

Improbable and uncertain, iffy and unlikely – the typical path to love.

Perfectly Skeptical . . . love when you least expect it.

Excerpt:
She stopped in her tracks and squealed, almost bumping into a man standing on her porch. He put out his hand to steady her.
“Oh my god, you scared me,” she said, taking a deep breath.
Laughing blue eyes looked back at her. “Sorry about that. I was just about to knock, but you beat me to it.” His eyes swept the length of her. “I was sent to see how you’re doing.”
Brianna stiffened. “I’m fine. Why?” She hadn’t advertised she was going away. Her parents and Maisy were the only ones who knew where she was.
“You haven’t been out and about.”
Who’s keeping tabs? And who would send this dark-haired, all muscle, all-male hunk with the relaxed island smile and disarming blue eyes? Not her parents, that’s for sure. Maisy? It was entirely possible. Maisy’s reach was surprisingly long.
Don’t live a little. Live a lot. Maisy, you’re a cheeky devil, sending a male escort. He looked at her with a patient smile, waiting for her to catch up. Something about a tropical paradise and his sexy bod made her consider. Brianna narrowed her eyes at him. “Are you married?”
“Nope.”
“Do you have nail fungus?”
He blinked and his smile faltered. “No. Are you feeling okay?”
“I’m feeling great.” She stepped closer to him. His eyes darkened. He didn’t step away. What the hell – she could play this game. Be cool. Fake nonchalance. Cultivate some of that swagger that came so easily to Maisy. Her heart pounded, but he didn’t need to know.
She went on her toes and brushed her lips against his. When he responded and took control, Brianna felt a tingle from her head to her toes. She pressed closer and felt the hard muscle of his chest through the thin shirt he wore. He caressed the bare skin of her back and skimmed her waist. She opened her mouth to take him deeper and their tongues danced. This wasn’t the kiss of a boy. This was the kiss of experience. Maybe Maisy had it right – if you were going to play, you might as well play with top-of-the-line equipment.
He ran his hands down her arms and then gripped them gently and pushed her away, breaking off the kiss. Brianna raised startled eyes to his and made a noise in protest.
“I’m sorry.” He stepped back, putting more distance between them, and cleared his throat. “I think you have the wrong idea. I’m Matt Gaelen. Dr. Matt Gaelen.” He ran his hand through his hair. “Jerome and Maria were worried because you hadn’t shown up at the restaurant, so they asked me to come and check on you.”
“Jerome and Maria. Owners of the villas?”
“Yes.”
Uh-oh. “You weren’t sent by Maisy?”
“No, I don’t know a Maisy.” He grinned. “Though I wish I did.”
She felt a flush rise on her cheeks. So much for living it up. “I’m very sorry,” she said stiffly. “That was a misunderstanding.” She grimaced. “It won’t happen again.” She’d stay well and truly hidden under a rock of mortification.
He raised an eyebrow. “Well, I’m happy to see you’re fine. Better than fine.” He smiled. “I’ll let them know.” He turned and jogged down the steps. And then he stopped and looked back. “But it does seem a shame that it won’t happen again.”
Brianna blew out a breath and watched him go. That wasn’t embarrassing. She cringed. This was precisely why she wanted solitude and privacy. She shook her head at herself and picked up her towel. The light was fading, but she still had time for a quick dip to cool off.
Let that be a lesson learned – well two, really: don’t jump to conclusions, and Dr. Matt Gaelen is an excellent kisser.

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Perfectly Skeptical, a Perfectly Series novella, is one of 25 brand new, exclusive romances in the Tropical Tryst boxed set. Escape to the tropics with award winning, USA Today and NYT best-selling authors.


Bio:
Linda O’Connor started writing a few years ago when she needed a creative outlet other than subtly rearranging the displays at the local home d├ęcor store. It turns out she loves writing romantic comedies and has a few more stories to tell. When not writing, she’s a physician at an Urgent Care Clinic (well, even when she is writing she’s a physician, and it shows up in her stories :D ). She hangs out at www.lindaoconnor.net.
Laugh every day. Love every minute.

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