We’re less than one week away from the release of BURN FOR YOU by J.T. Geissinger, so we’re bringing you a sneak peek! Check out the excerpt below, watch the teaser trailer, and preorder your copy today!
About BURN FOR YOU (Slow Burn #1)
Available October 17th
The marriage is fake. But for a sassy chef and an arrogant billionaire, the sparks are real… Jackson “The Beast” Boudreaux is rich, gorgeous, and unbelievably rude to the staff at Chef Bianca Hardwick’s New Orleans restaurant. Bianca would sooner douse herself in hot sauce than cook for Jackson again, but when he asks her to cater his fund-raiser, Bianca can’t refuse, knowing the cash will help pay her mother’s medical bills. Then Jackson makes another outrageous request: Marry me. The unconventional offer includes an enormous sum—money Bianca desperately needs, even if it does come with a contract—and a stunning ring.
The heir to a family bourbon dynasty, Jackson knows the rumors swirling around him. The truth is even darker. Still, he needs a wife to secure his inheritance, and free-spirited, sassy Bianca would play the part beautifully. Soon, though, their simple business deal evolves into an emotional intimacy he’s built walls to avoid.
As the passion heats up between them, Bianca and Jackson struggle to define which feelings are real and which are for show. Is falling for your fake fiancé the best happy ending…or a recipe for disaster?
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Read an excerpt from BURN FOR YOU
This time it was me who froze in shock when our lips came together. It took him several long moments of gentle coercion with his tongue before I finally opened my mouth. When I did, it was on a soft groan that he stole when he inhaled.
He was so big, and warm, and hard everywhere, except for his mouth, which was like cotton candy. I melted into it. He slid his thumb under my ear, and I shivered. His fingers pressed into my scalp. When he sank his teeth gently into my lower lip, lightning flashed through me.
I fisted my hand into the scruff of his neck and pulled him closer.
Suck, slide, nip, repeat, feel your pulse in all the hidden places in your body. This kiss was cashmere. It was luxuriant. It was decadent, unhurried, sweetly delicious, like stretching out on warm sand and drinking a mai tai. His scent was in my nose: pine and musk and something earthy and fresh, the way the woods smell after it rains.
He made that masculine sound deep in his throat that I found weirdly thrilling and pressed his hand into the small of my back. It brought our lower bodies together and provided me with impressive evidence that Jackson Boudreaux was anything but nonsexual.
“Oh,” I breathed.
His laugh was soft and dark. “Yes, oh. Stop talking.”
I couldn’t catch my breath, but it didn’t matter because his lips were on mine again. Little puffs of air through my nose would have to sustain me.
His hand in the small of my back became the iron band of his arm around my waist. My nipples tightened. His heartbeat crashed against my chest. The kiss turned from slow and sweet to hard and hot, first melting me and then lighting me on fire.
He tangled his hand into my hair, pulled the clip loose that held it all in place, and let it fall to the floor. He made that sexy, manly noise again when my hair spilled into his fingers. I fought the urge to press my hips against his, then softly moaned in relief when he did it for me, one big paw cupped under my bottom. Yes, yes, yes, thrummed my heart, aching for more.
He broke away, breathing heavily. My eyes drifted open. He stared down at me with a look like he might devour me.
Good thing I was in the mood to be devoured.
See the BURN FOR YOU teaser trailer:
About J.T. Geissinger
A former headhunter, J.T. Geissinger is the author of more than a dozen novels in contemporary romance, paranormal romance, and romantic suspense.
She is the recipient of the Prism Award for Best First Book, the Golden Quill Award for Best Paranormal/Urban Fantasy, and is a two-time finalist for the RITA® Award from the Romance Writers of America®. Her work has also finaled in the Booksellers’ Best, National Readers’ Choice, and Daphne du Maurier Awards.
Join her Facebook reader’s group, Geissinger’s Gang, to take part in weekly Wine Wednesday live chats and giveaways, find out more information about works in progress, have access to exclusive excerpts and contests, and get advance reader copies of her upcoming releases.
Dark Contemporary Romance. Contains explicit sexual situations, violence, disturbingly sensitive and taboo subjects, offensive language and very mature topics. Recommended for ages 18 and over.
But this was Dolly. The only person I’d ever given a shit about.
A slick tar pumped through my black heart as I thought of her. She was the blood that gave me life.
I had no idea what state I would find her in. Whether or not her fragile mind had been destroyed. Whether or not her glass heart had been shattered. No hope of salvation.
I had no idea if my only reason for living could be saved. I shook with venomous anger when I let my mind imagine the hell those sadistic cunts would have put her through in my absence. But Chapel’s words rang in my ears . . . Unleash the anger only on those who deserve it. Let it build within your heart like a well swelling with water . . . then unleash hell on those who took your freedom.
Opening my eyes, I breathed through my rage and silently rounded the corner . . . I stopped. There she was, sitting in a chair. I sucked in a breath and heard it rattle in my ears. Her hair. Her hair was pulled back into a long braid, the woven strands falling to her lower back. And she was dressed in black. Long, baggy sleeves covered her arms.
Motherfucking black. Dolly didn’t belong in black. Only color. Blue and white and gold and motherfucking pink.
I edged around the perimeter of the room until I faced her. My heart tore down the center and I had to hold back a loud snarl when I saw her curled up on the seat, a thick blanket over her thin legs and waist as she stared lifelessly out of the window. The window that overlooked the once-manicured lawns, now nothing but high-reaching weeds and too-bushy trees. I looked across at what she was watching, in the direction of what held her so captivated.
My heart was severed completely, the two parts of its flesh repelling the other, trying to escape the rage and pain and fucking consuming darkness.
She was staring at the spot where we used to play as kids. Where she had found me all those years ago, ripping the colorful butterfly apart in my hands. I moved into her line of sight, but her blue eyes didn’t lift to meet mine, just stared through me as though I wasn’t even there. I crouched down and studied her face. Porcelain skin. Full lips. Fucking perfection.
But there was no life left in her.
I had never felt fear before, but I imagined the sinking hole I felt dropping in my stomach was something like it. A sinking feeling that Dolly had gone to a place from which there was no escape, a prisoner in her own mind.
“Dolly darlin,’” I rasped, my voice fucking breaking.
Twenty-one. She was twenty-one and more beautiful than I could ever have imagined.
My living doll.
A strand of hair lay over her face. My fingers clenched and unclenched as I tried to force myself to touch her. But I couldn’t. I hadn’t touched or been touched in years. I didn’t know how to anymore. Allergic to human affection. Repulsed by the degrading feeling of touch.
I . . . I . . . I couldn’t.
As I opened my mouth to speak to Dolly again, a loud gasp sailed through the air behind her. I straightened, gripping my cane, to see a familiar old face appear. I watched, the sinking hole quickly replaced by dark satisfaction as the blood drained from her face. “Good Lord,” she whispered as I smoothed down my black cravat and vest.
I glared at the bitch. Leaning casually on my cane, I said, “More like Lucifer, I would think.” I nodded in her direction “To you, anyhow.”
Mrs. Jenkins swallowed and tried to back out of the room. “Ah-ah,” I tutted and shook my head. She immediately stilled, eyes fixed on mine.
“He . . . Heathan James . . . it’s . . . it’s not possible . . .” she stammered and ran her eyes over me. Every inch of me.
“Rabbit.” The bitch flinched at my correction. “I am Rabbit. The motherfucking White Rabbit. So never fucking utter that peasant name to me again.”
Her skin paled, and her eyes fell to Dolly sitting on the chair. Dolly still hadn’t moved. I shifted my grip on the box I had brought inside, about to hold it out to Mrs. Jenkins when she asked, “How are you here?”
I threw the box across the room. It landed right at her feet. “Dress her.”
“Wh-what?” Mrs. Jenkins asked.
I pointed to the box at her feet. “Dress her. It wasn’t a request.” Mrs. Jenkins shook as she picked up the box and moved to where Dolly sat. Dolly didn’t look at her either. Mrs. Jenkins opened the lid of the box and gasped again.
Her old, wrinkled eyes snapped up to mine. “No—”
Before she had even finished the sentence, I had reached into my pocket and pulled out my knife. I ran the flat side of the blade down my cheek. Slowly. Controlled. Watching her terrified gaze track my every move. “You’d best do as I ask, Mrs. Jenkins. My patience and tolerance for you appear to be at an all-time low.”
After graduating from Newcastle University with a BA Hons in Religious Studies, Tillie followed her Professional Rugby player husband around the world for a decade, becoming a teacher in between and thoroughly enjoyed teaching High School students Social Studies before putting pen to paper, and finishing her first novel.
Tillie has now settled in Austin, Texas, where she is finally able to sit down and write, throwing herself into fantasy worlds and the fabulous minds of her characters.
Tillie is both an independent and traditionally published author, and writes many genres including: Contemporary Romance, Dark Romance, Young Adult and New Adult novels.
When she is not writing, Tillie enjoys nothing more than curling up on her couch watching movies, drinking far too much coffee, while convincing herself that she really doesn’t need that extra square of chocolate.
A stand alone psychological thriller.
HAVE YOU SEEN THIS GIRL?
In the middle of a fierce snowstorm in Gun Creek, Nevada, seventeen-year-old Jennifer Thomas disappears without a trace.
The second girl in nine years.
Identical cases. Identical conditions. Only last time, the girl was found. Dead, stuffed in a well beside the creek that feeds the town’s water supply.
The killer was never found.
As the small town mobilizes and searches for newly vanished Jennifer Thomas, one suspect comes to the fore. But did he do it? Or is there something else at play? Something nobody could have anticipated?
For Jennifer’s friend Cassie Carlino, the worst is yet to come. As she pins MISSING posters to store windows and joins the search, she begins to suspect that Jennifer’s disappearance might be much closer to her than she could have ever imagined.
Lili quit corporate life to focus on writing and so far is loving every minute of it. Her other loves in life include her gorgeous husband and beautiful daughter, excellent coffee, Tarantino movies and spending hours on Instagram.
She loves to read almost as much as she loves to write.
★ ★ #ExcerptReveal & #PreOrder ★ ★
FOREVER DEVOTED by @CAHarms
#ContemporaryRomance / Crazed Devotion #2
Releasing Sept. 26th #KindleUnlimited
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2wEjwXm
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2w5FmDF
Amazon AU: http://amzn.to/2wEA0OR
Amazon CA: http://amzn.to/2xOTQw9
A stubborn man, an independent woman.
Oh how those two things clash.
Former Marine, Benjamin Keaton has a drive in him.
A strong willed nature to seek and conquer.
When he meets Elizabeth Berfield he finds out one thing and he finds out fast.
He has met his match.
She doesn’t let anyone tell her what to do, especially a man.
A battle of wills and a game of survival unfolds. Oh what a ride it is.
But Ben vows one thing,
He will be Forever Devoted to Liz. He will make her see that he is the man for her.
But will his determination be enough to convince her that he’s worth the risk?
Or will Liz do what she always does and remain headstrong and push away the one man willing to protect her heart.
ADD TO YOUR #TBR! http://bit.ly/ForeverDevotedTBR
★ ★ PRE-ORDER AVAILABLE ★ ★
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2wEjwXm
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Amazon AU: http://amzn.to/2wEA0OR
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“There is a tall, handsome and might I add dreamy hunk of a man waiting just outside for you.”
I tried not to laugh at the wide-eyed expression of the teenage girl standing in my doorway. She was awestruck apparently, and the way she was smiling had to cramp her cheeks.
“Did you get his name?” I asked, already knowing who it was.
Her smile faltered as she looked over her shoulder, then back to me. “I forgot to ask,” she said in a high-pitched voice. “I guess I was distracted.”
It was my turn to smile, “Believe me when I say I know exactly how that can happen.” She looked a little relieved. “His name is Ben, and you can send him in.”
With a nod, she stepped out and within seconds he appeared in the open doorway.
“Good morning,” he said as he moved in and sat on the edge on my desk. His large frame practically swallowed up the surface beneath him. “You avoiding me again?”
“No.” I leaned back and crossed my arms over my chest. “I’ve actually been busy.”
He watched me closely, as if I would somehow show him I was lying. Arching my brow, I remained in place and his smile grew wider. “Have lunch with me.” It wasn’t a request.
“Busy,” I replied, holding up the stack of papers on my desk and giving them a little shake.
“Dinner then. I’ll even bring it to you if you can’t get away.”
“What are we having?” I asked, still not yet agreeing.
“What do you want?” His eyes remained locked on mine as he gave me a mischievous grin. Ben and I had developed this little flirty game. In fact, we’d pretty much mastered it. I knew he wanted me, and I wanted him. That was never the issue. I just had to learn to get past my hesitance and fears of what could go wrong.
“Steak,” I finally said, ignoring the flutter in my stomach. “Seasoned vegetables and garlic roasted potatoes.”
“Can we forego the garlic? I kinda wanna kiss you later and I don’t want any excuses from you. If I add garlic into the mix, well, I’m setting myself up for disappointment.”
I couldn’t help the laughter that bubbled up and spilled from me. “You’re insane.”
“For you, yes.”
As one of Hollywood’s hottest producers, Kristian Bowen is on top of the world. With the Quantum team is fresh off a clean sweep of awards season and looking ahead to the premiere of their new film, Insidious, Kristian’s life is exactly how he likes it, complete with a stable of willing subs to tend to his every desire. Until he attends the wedding of his friend and business partner Flynn Godfrey and meets AileenGifford, the close friend of Flynn’s new wife, Natalie. Since meeting Aileen five months ago, Kristian’s carefully cultivated life has changed in ways he never could’ve expected. Now Aileen and her children are moving to Los Angeles, and he’s not sure whether to be excited or terrified about his powerful feelings for the single mom…
Aileen is coming off the worst year of her life, spent battling breast cancer while taking care of two young children. When Natalie, Flynn and their other friends encourage Aileen to move to LA and work for Quantum, she jumps at the chance to give her family a fresh start. And with her off-the-charts attraction to Flynn’s business partner in the mix, the idea of living in LA becomes that much sweeter. Until everyone shows up to welcome her and the kids to their new home in LA—except Kristian.
He can’t avoid her forever, and when these two finally see each other again, sparks fly between the single mom and the producer with a past he’s kept hidden from everyone who matters to him. When that past rears its ugly head, will he run away from the woman he loves or turn to her for comfort in the storm? And will she prevail in convincing him that he can be himself, in every possible way, with her?
Kristian and Aileen’s long-awaited story is full of heat, heart and humor, as well as appearances from all the Quantum characters readers love!
Purchase Delirious now!
Kindle US | iBooks | Nook | Kobo | Google | Kindle CA | Kindle UK | Kindle AU
Order a signed copy from Marie’s store, Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
M.S. Force is the erotic alter-ego of New York Times bestselling author Marie Force. All three books in her initial Quantum Trilogy were New York Times bestsellers in 2015, and the Quantum Trilogy became the Quantum Series with Rapturous and Ravenous, with more to come!
Marie Force is the New York Times bestselling author of more than 50 contemporary romances, including the Gansett Island Series, which has sold nearly 3 million books, and the Fatal Series from Harlequin Books, which has sold 1.5 million books. In addition, she is the author of the Butler, Vermont Series, the Green Mountain Series and the erotic romance Quantum Series, written under the slightly modified name of M.S. Force. All together, her books have sold more than 5.5 million copies worldwide!
Her goals in life are simple—to finish raising two happy, healthy, productive young adults, to keep writing books for as long as she possibly can and to never be on a flight that makes the news.
Join Marie’s mailing list for news about new books and upcoming appearances in your area. Follow her on Twitter @marieforce and on Facebook. Join one of Marie’s many reader groups. Contact Marie at firstname.lastname@example.org. Subscribe to her new blog to hear the latest and greatest news, including giveaways and other great prizes. Go to the blog and enter your email address on the upper right-hand side.
Reader Groups: https://marieforce.com/contact/
Series: Smirnov Bratva #4
Author: TL Smith
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Release Date: September 21
A heart is something that should not be entrusted to me.
I will tear, crush, and destroy it with my very own hands.
Then back away with a smile on my face.
It’s who I am—a killer, a player, a joker.
But hers, I’m unsure about.
Do I want to rupture and rip it from her chest?
Or do I want to hold and capture it with my own?
Her scent invades me, it’s all I can smell when I wake up, and it’s fucking brilliant. Just as she was last night, even if it meant I had to shut up to taste her and to fuck her again. What a wild drug she fucking is.
“I can hear you thinking, stop it,” she grumbles into my arm as she sleeps. “Gosh, how are your thoughts so loud?” She moves to get away from me, but I pull her back then pin her beneath me. She doesn’t fight me, just smirks. “I need coffee,” she says.
“You need a breath mint,” I retort back, scrunching up my nose.
“Oh my God, you so did not say that. I’m meant to have sweet breath…” I blow into my hand to smell, “… no morning breath here. Gosh, you kill the buzz fast.” She wiggles underneath me, which in turn moves on my already hard cock. I could say it’s morning wood, but that would only be a half-truth.
“You want me to lie and tell you, you smell like fucking daisies?” I ask her, confused. She shakes her head. “I can see if you smell like daisies. There’s a particular area where I think you do.” I smirk while holding onto her hands, and then I drop lower as I drag my body down over on hers. She squirms, but she can’t do anything.
My lips touch her, barely, and she squeezes her legs tight, locking my head between them. I have to remove my hands from hers to push myself free.
“Anton.” The voice is loud.
Looking back up, I see Samara’s expression and want to laugh.
“Mama, just wait,” I yell in Russian.
Samara pushes back and off me, scrambles off the bed and looks around for her clothes, which are downstairs.
“I have your lady’s clothes, Anton. Is she still in there?”
English, my mother chose to speak English. Fuck.
“Yes, leave them at the door.”
“Bring her down.” I hear her footsteps walking away, and when I turn, I see Samara with her hands covering her mouth and a freaked-out expression on her face.
She starts shaking her head rapidly. “I am not meeting your mother.”
“I have a better idea, let’s spend all day in bed while I fuck you until you can’t move.”
“Are you insane? Your mother is here.”
I shrug my shoulders. “She was here last night when I brought you home.”
Her hands drop to her sides, and she looks at me as if I’ve lost my mind. “This is your mother’s house?” I nod my head. “And you still live with your mother?” she asks, looking quite confused.
“Technically my father as well, but that piece of shit is always in Russia. My sister is here too, now that she’s no longer enrolled in boarding school.”
“Gosh, I don’t care… sneak me the fuck out of here now.” She pulls the sheet from the bed when she realizes she’s still naked and my eyes keep roaming.
“But I wanted to smell for daisies.”
“Anton, so help me God, I’ll bury you in the daisy bushes if you don’t get me out of here.”
I quirk an eyebrow at her—it’s her daisy bush I would love to be buried in.
“Not those ones, you perv, in the fucking ground.”
“I like it when you’re feisty with me,” I say, turning and opening the door to pick up her clothes, and that’s when I realize they are torn. Alyona walks out of her room, at that exact moment, with a few clothes in her hands and she walks them to me then smiles.
“Hi Sam,” she chimes, then walks off.
Closing the door, I hold both sets of clothes in my hand, the torn ones as well as Alyona’s.
“Why do you have two sets of clothes?” Samara walks up to me still holding the sheet in her hand in front of her as she reaches for hers, then realizes the same thing I did. She isn’t walking out in them. She looks up to me, her eyes have turned dark. They’re almost black as her anger builds, so I pass her the other set of clothing. She snatches them then walks away to my bathroom, slamming the door.
I guess that’s the end of my pussy patrol for the day.
USA Today Best Selling Author T.L Smith can be found in almost any chocolate store, eating all the chocolate. She lives in Brisbane, Australia with her two kids and husband. Her favourite things to do is dancing, writing, reading and travelling the world. A lover for twisted words and things that make your heart pump. You can find her on the following links.
I’m writing this letter because it’s highly doubtful I’ll ever garner the courage to say this to your face.
So, here goes.
We’re totally wrong for each other. You’re the proper single mum with a good head on your shoulders. I’m just the carefree British doctor passing through town and temporarily living in your converted garage until I head back to England.
But here’s the thing… for some bloody reason, I can’t stop thinking about you in very inappropriate ways.
I want you.
The only reason I’m even admitting all of this to you right now is because I don’t believe it’s one-sided. I notice your eyes when you look at me, too. And as crass as I appear when we’re joking around about sex, my attraction to you is not a joke.
So, what’s the purpose of this note? I guess it’s a reminder that we’re adults, that sex is healthy and natural, and that you can find me just through the door past the kitchen. More specifically, it’s to let you know that I’m leaving said door cracked open from now on in case you’d like to visit me in the middle of the night sometime.
No questions asked.
Think about it.
Whatever you choose.
It’s doubtful I’ll even end up sliding this letter under your door anyway.
Dear Bridget, I Want You will be available on all platforms on September 18th!
Pre-orders are available at the following:
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Every time I considered leaving my room, I would grab the framed picture of Ben and stare at it. The urge to go to Simon was so strong; I basically hadn’t put down the framed photo of my deceased husband in an hour. I was lying in my bed, holding a picture of a dead man while fantasizing about one who was very much alive and in the other room. With the door cracked open waiting for me. There was one part of Simon’s note that I just kept reading over and over.
I want to make you come. Hard. I want you to get lost in me and I want to hear you say my name over and over while we fuck.
While we fuck.
While we fuck.
I was pretty sure that Ben had never used the word fuck like that before. Did we even fuck? We made love, sure. Our sex life was normal—at least, I think it was normal. Don’t get me wrong, the passion wasn’t the same as when we first got together. But after ten years, both of us working full time and raising a child, it was normal to have some of the desire dwindle, wasn’t it?
While we fuck.
I looked at the picture of my husband and sighed. We didn’t fuck. Not even in the beginning. And I felt guilty for that now. Maybe we should have been fucking. I certainly didn’t do anything to entice him to want me the last few years. Was it my fault our sex life had gotten boring? I rested the picture of Ben over my heart and laid my hand over it. I could feel my heart beating out of control beneath my fingers.
Shutting my eyes, I tried to force thoughts of Simon from my mind. But it was no use. Visions of his hard, sculpted body hovering over me had infiltrated my brain. So, here I was, a thirty-three-year-old, single mother lying in my bed all alone with a picture of my dead husband held to my heart while I visualized fucking another man.
Not making love.
I needed my head examined.
After two hours and no sleep in sight, I decided the only way I was going to be able to get any rest was if I got everything I was feeling off of my chest. Flicking on the light, I carefully set the framed photo of my beloved Ben on my nightstand and then opened the drawer and dug out a pen and piece of pretty stationery. I would write down my thoughts to clear my mind. I had no intention of actually giving the letter to Simon, so there was no reason to filter anything I said.
We hope you enjoyed this preview!
Penelope Ward is a New York Times, USA Today, and #1 Wall Street Journal Bestselling author of thirteen novels. With over a million books sold, her titles have placed on the New York Times Bestseller list seventeen times. She is the proud mother of a beautiful 12-year-old girl with autism (the inspiration for the character Callie in Gemini) and a 10-year-old boy. Penelope, her husband, and kids reside in Rhode Island.
Vi Keeland is a #1 New York Times Bestselling author. With more than a million and a half books sold, her titles have appeared in over eighty Bestseller lists and are currently translated in seventeen languages. She lives in New York with her husband and their three children where she is living out her own happily ever after with the boy she met at age six.
Other books from Vi Keeland & Penelope Ward:
Kobo: http:// bit.ly/1RJdUif
Barnes & Noble http://smarturl.it/kx7h8m
Other books from Vi Keeland:
Amazon eBook http://amzn.to/2uoeoJN
B&N: http:// bit.ly/BarnesBaller
Kobo: http:// bit.ly/KoboBaller
Left Behind (A Young Adult Novel)
First Thing I See
Life on Stage series (2 standalone books)
http://www.amazon.com/Beat-Vi-Keeland-ebook/dp/B00ZOMUV12/ http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/beat-vi-keeland/1121715501 https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/beat/id983959123 https://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/beat-5
MMA Fighter series (3 standalone books)
Worth the Fight
Worth the Chance
The Cole Series (2 book serial)
Belong to You
Made for You
Other books from Penelope Ward:
Sins of Sevin
Jake Undone (Jake #1)
Jake Understood (Jake #2)
Dark romance fans get readyyyy…something sinister lurks!
Pitch Dark by A.M. Wilson & Alex Grayson releases September 15.
ADD TO YOUR TBR → http://bit.ly/2utq2Aq
HERE’S THE SNEAK-PEEK FROM A.M. & ALEX:
“D’you mind if I sit?” I ask gently. I want her to feel like she has control. If she asked me to leave, I would. I need her to trust me enough to open up. I already assumed it’d be hard, but two seconds in her room is enough to tell it’s going to be a mountain of a task.
The girl gives one short, sharp bob of her head, and I scan the room for a safe place to sit. A lone chair set by her window has a white plastic seat and metal legs. It looks uncomfortable as hell for a piece of furniture in a hospital room, but it’ll do. Forcing myself to go slow, I cross the room and drop my ass into it. I drop my elbows to my knees and lean forward, clasping my hands together.
“I’m Niko.” She doesn’t respond. By her stare and the steady rise and fall of her shoulders, I’d guess she’s concentrating on breathing. “I thought we could talk. Is that okay with you?”
She nods again.
“Can I get you something to drink?” This time, she gives a punctuated shake. Okay, so she’s good with using nonverbal communication. That’s a start at least. I can work with yes-or- no questions.
“Do you know where you are?”
Her gaze flits to the open door and the hall beyond. Once again, I’m left staring at the state of disfigurement this woman has been left in. It’s obvious these are signs of abuse, but from who? Her pimp? Was she attacked for trying to leave that life? A victim of domestic violence? Could she be connected to the person who took Rebecca?
I don’t realize I’m staring until she shakes her head again, and the movement pulls me from my thoughts. I trail my eyes over her wounds again, and the sight makes me sick. I grind my back molars together to get ahold of myself. Once I feel calm, I ask another question.
“Do you know your name?”
She shakes her head. Damn. I try a different route. “Do you know how you got all these cuts?”
At my words, she glances down at her arms. She runs her right index finger over a spot of dried blood on her right thigh. “Yes,” she croaks in a quiet voice that startles me.
“Can you tell me how?”
“All of them.” She goes on as if I didn’t speak.
I try to keep my expression neutral but I’m confused. “All of them? What do you mean?”
“I know how I got all of them.” She faces me with a blank stare. “I remember them all.” The sound of her voice sends a shiver down my spine. Monotone and quiet, it reminds me of nothing. That void of hopelessness. Of no going back.
“Who did this to you?” I prod gently.
She shakes her head again, and my stomach sinks. “I can’t remember. I remember the shadow man and the screaming girl. And the pain,” she goes on in a hollow voice. “I remember being hurt, but not who did it. I think… I think I did it.”
About A.M. and Alex:
Avid readers and writers of suspenseful romances, both A.M. and Alex enjoy torturing their readers with twisted tales and crazy dark scenarios.
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The Swamp is about to get a whole lot hotter! The Outskirts by T.M. Frazier is coming September 12th!
The Outskirts by T.M. Frazier
Release Date: September 12th, 2017
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Sawyer wants a life of her own.
Finn wants to forget he ever had one.
After a tragedy, Finn Hollis escapes
into the swamp to be alone.
That is until Sawyer Dixon shows up,
all SCORCHING HOT innocence,
claiming she owns the land less than
fifty feet from his front door.
Sawyer gets under his SKIN, but even worse?
She makes him WANT things.
Things Finn hasn’t wanted in a very very long time.
Finn WANTS Sawyer gone.
Almost as much as he wants her in his BED.
The Outskirts is Book One in the Outskirts Duet.
My throat tightened and a heaviness grew in my chest like my heart didn’t know whether to beat faster or stop beating altogether. “Did you leave me all this to show me the life you could’ve had, but didn’t? Why!?” I pounded the wheel again and then again, and again and again until my vision was blurry and all I could see was the redness of my own heated rage. “You’re a fucking coward! You fucking COWARD!” I screamed to no one, pounding on the wheel until the skin across my knuckles split and blood dripped between my fingers.
Strong hands bit into my biceps, yanking me from the cab. I was spun around by my shoulders and found myself face to face with Finn. “I like it when you swear,” he said, pressing close.
“Finn, get off me! Get off me! Let me go!” I wailed, struggling to free myself from his grip. Kicking out my legs only to connect with the air as he evaded my every move.
A growl tore from his throat. Finn picked me up and walked me to the back of the truck, setting me on the open tailgate. He pushed himself between my legs and hovered over me to keep me from leaping off.
“Let me go,” I demanded, pushing at his hard chest. “I don’t have time for your broodiness right now.”
Finn held my wrists together with one hand. “No, of course you don’t. You’re too busy tearing up pictures and screaming at no one.”
“Let me go,” I repeated.
“No,” he said between clenched teeth.
“Just go! Leave me alone. Leave meeeeeee!” I wailed as I pounded against his stone chest.
“You don’t want to hit me,” he warned, his eyes hardened.
“Then let me go.”
“Why?” He stepped in closer, unaffected by my attempt to fight against him. My inner thighs were touching his outer thighs.
“Because she did!” I screamed, my eyes sprang open to find his cold blue gaze. “She could have run anywhere and taken me with her. Instead she left him but she left me too. She was a coward who couldn’t make the right decision and I love her. I love her…but I hate her. I hate her so much…so…” I was interrupted when Finn’s lips pressed against mine, momentarily rendering me stupid. I pointed my toes toward the sky to avoid my initial instinct which was to wrap my legs around him. It was so consuming that I momentarily forgot to fight him off, but I didn’t need to, he pulled his lips from mine.
“Stop doing that,” I said. I pushed him off but he stayed between my legs, his hands on my bare back just under the hem of his big t-shirt I was wearing. His gaze hardened. I could see the conflict written in his lined forehead and the deep V between his eyes. I had no doubt the conflict had everything to do with me.
And kissing me.
“It’s your fault that I do it,” Finn said, his voice deep and smooth against my chin and then my neck.
“So that’s your plan? Kiss me every time you want to shut me up?” I asked, still feeling every bit of my anger but also feeling something else. Something that sent tingles between my legs and an ache in my core. “Thank you for saving me. Really. Thank you. I appreciate it,” my voice cracked. “But you can just leave me alone now. And please, STOP kissing me.” My words a whisper.
“I’m going to kiss you whenever I want to kiss you,” Finn stated as if I didn’t have a say in the matter.
The early morning sunlight highlighted the beads of sweat trickling from his shoulders down his broad chest and across the valleys of his defined abs. He was standing so close that we were breathing in each other’s air.
“Whenever you want to kiss me?” I laughed. “I don’t understand you. I don’t understand any of this. You’re always mad at me. Why did you save me? Why do you keep kissing me when you’re always mad at me?”
“It’s when I’m pissed off at you that I want to kiss you the most,” Finn said, his voice flowing over my skin like a silky blanket. He slid me closer so I could feel the outline of his rigid erection as if he were proving a point. He lowered his lips to mine and consumed my mouth in a greedy kiss that had me shaking with need and spinning with confusion.
“Do you always kiss everyone you hate?” I asked, yanking my lips from his.
“Does this feel like hate to you?” he growled pushing his hard length between my legs.
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About the Author:
T.M.Frazier is a USA TODAY bestselling author. She resides in sunny Southwest Florida with her husband and her young daughter.
When she’s not writing she loves talking to her readers, country music, reading and traveling. Her debut novel, The Dark Light of Day was published in September of 2013 and when she started writing it she intended for it to be a light beachy romance.
Well…it has a beach in it!
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Check out this amazing EXCERPT of Blood Guard by Megan Erickson!
Coming soon on September 12th, you’ll want to sink your teeth into this romance!
Kobo → http://bit.ly/2vZ4aQX
“Megan Erickson knows how to bring the heat! With a kick-butt heroine and a hero to die for, Blood Guard kept me reading all night long.”—New York Times bestselling author Tracy Wolff
Enter a world of immortal danger and desire—and discover an incredible fate borne of blood.
Tendra: One minute, I’m a bartender in gritty Mission City; the next, I’m whisked away by a vampire named Athan who tells me that I’m the lifeblood of his clan. It sounds unbelievable, but he’s got evidence I can’t deny. Turns out, Athan belongs to an underground society of vampires who feed only on humans with their consent. Their enemies have no such qualms, and they want me dead. The only thing standing in their way is strong, sexy Athan. And the closer we get, the more tempted I am to let Athan feed. . . .
Athan: How could I have known when I snatched this snarky, beautiful human off the streets that she would change my destiny? As a loyal soldier, I must deliver Tendra to our future king—my brother. Empowered with the blood of ten generations of the Gregorie breed, she is fated to rule as our queen. But there’s something between us that’s so intoxicating, so carnal, I can’t help wanting Tendra for myself . . . even if it’s treason.
The panic welled in my chest. I was trapped in a strange apartment with a strange man who probably outweighed me trifold. I opened up my mouth to scream but he held up his hand and said in a deep voice. “You scream, and I’ll just put you to sleep again.”
My jaw snapped shut. I focused on breathing. In and out. In and out. I wanted to thrash and yell, and holler, but he’d somehow knocked me out before and I would be useless if he did it again.
I glanced around. The only light was from a small, dim bare bulb above us. The rest of the room was in shadow. There was nothing I could use for a weapon, not even my shoes. I focused back on the man in front of me. “How’d we get here?”
“I carried you,” he answered, his voice a rumble that I felt down to my bones.
Something moved in the corner of my vision and I peered into the dark. A form materialized, and I must have been dreaming still because Brex was there. He stalked toward me, rubbed against my leg, then sat down by my feet like a feline guard. I tried to be calm, but I was close to losing it. I didn’t date. Was this how people dated now? Maybe it was a thing. “Why is my cat here?”
My captor didn’t move, and half of his face was in shadow. “I brought him.”
“I don’t keep my ID on me, so how’d you know where I live?”
“I didn’t need your ID.” His eyes narrowed slightly. “I’ve been watching you.”
Oh, just fucking great. A stalker. I’d be lucky if I made it out of here without him wearing my skin like clothes and my head in a freezer. “Okay, cool. Well, uh, hi. I’m Tendra. I applaud you for your unconventional, um, greeting. Want to untie me? We can go for a drink. I make a mean screwdriver.”
Confusion flickered over his face, then his scowl deepened, like uncertainty angered him. “No.”
I didn’t want to make him mad, but I’d never been great at keeping my mouth shut. Sometimes me opening my mouth was the reason we had to move. “Do you want money? Because I’m sorry to say, you kidnapped the wrong girl. Especially because I just paid rent. I’m eating peanut butter out of the tub for the next week.”
Again with the angry confusion. He rubbed his forehead. “I don’t want your money.”
I gritted my teeth. “Well, now you have me here. What do you plan to do to me?” The panic was slowly switching over to anger, the fight instinct my mother instilled in me strong as ever. If he was going to kill me, maybe I could piss him off enough that it would be quick. “Because I’ll tell you right now, I will fight you to my dying breath and then come back from the dead and haunt you until I convince you to cut your own dick off.”
His expression didn’t change. “Charming.”
I was signing my death warrant, but I couldn’t resist getting a shot in. “Fuck you, you creeper.”
His chest rose as he inhaled sharply. “Right, so let’s have it out. I’m your guard, because you’re destined to be delivered to my older brother in order to make our clan stronger.”
I didn’t move. Not an inch. Because holy shit, not only was he a creepy stalker, but he was out of his gourd, too. I couldn’t just have an evil stalker. Oh, no, I had to have a lunatic one, too. Zero of what he said made sense, so I focused on one thing at a time. “Excuse me? Clan? What are you, cavemen?”
I thought he’d take offense, but instead he just looked bored. “No, not cavemen. Vampires.”
And blinked again.
But nope, he was still there. This was still happening. Only me. If I made it out of here alive, what a story I’d have to sell about my stalker who thought he was a vampire. I had visions of the guy trying to bite my neck with his blunt teeth. Which made a giggle bubble up in my throat, which turned into a laugh, which turned into me throwing my head back in hysterical laughter until tears streamed down my cheeks.
When I dropped my head and focused on him through my tears, he was watching me carefully, that impassive expression still on his face.
He reached down and picked up Brex by the scruff of his neck, which immediately ceased any and all amusement on my part. “If you hurt my cat, swear to God—“
Brex yowled and swiped a paw across the man’s face. A thin line of scarlet bloomed on his cheekbone before the man dropped Brex, who scurried off to hide under a small table near an old couch. “Good job, Brex!” I shouted after him. “Now come back and finish the job!”
I turned to my stalker, and whatever I was about to say died in my throat. I watched as the cut sealed up and vanished before my eyes.
No mark, no blood. No nothing.
And those dark eyes were still trained on me.
About the Author:
Megan Erickson is a USA Today bestselling author of romance that sizzles. Her books have a touch of nerd, a dash of humor, and always have a happily ever after. A former journalist, she switched to fiction when she decided she likes writing her own endings better.
She lives in Pennsylvania with her very own nerdy husband and two kids. Although rather fun-sized, she’s been told she has a full-sized personality. When Megan isn’t writing, she’s either lounging with her two cats named after John Hughes characters or… thinking about writing.
Connect with Megan: