Michael Okon on Tour: Monsterland

https://goddessfishpromotions.blogspot.com/2017/09/virtual-book-tour-monsterland-by.html

One randomly drawn commenter will win a $50 Amazon/BN GC (international giveaway), five randomly drawn winners will win a size large Monsterland T-shirt (US only).

 

Author Interview

 

Any weird things you do when you’re alone?

I bite the inside of my lips. I do it when I’m concentrating. Then my wife and mom tell me to stop. So I guess I don’t do that when I’m alone. But I think I do.

 

What is your favorite quote and why?

“A day without laughter is a day wasted.” – Charlie Chaplin. I think that says it all.

 

Who is your favorite author and why?

Me. No, I’m kidding. I can’t choose one author, it’s like choosing children. But I will give you a few. Wallace Wattles and Joseph Murphy – their books “The Science of Getting Rich” and “The Power of Your Subconscious Mind” changed my life. They taught me that the universe is at our command and you can manifest anything you’d like. Michael Crichton has been very influential in my life. Jurassic Park was the spark that made me want to be a writer.

 

What, in your opinion, are the most important elements of good writing?

 When a writer can make you forget about your day while reading his/her work, that’s the best type of writing. I liken reading a good book to playing a video game. You are not thinking about your mortgage, your car payment, or your broken sprinkler in the backyard. You are completely immersed in the moment and truly care about the characters you are reading about.

 

Where did you get the idea for this book?

I always wanted to write a monster book, but couldn’t come up with something catchy. I wanted to write something completely brand new, but still have a primal theme that audiences could connect with.  My son and I were watching an 80s and 90s movie marathon one weekend. It popped into my head after watching The Goonies and Jurassic Park. “What about a theme park with zombies?” I immediately called my brother to tell him about this nugget I conceived, and, to my surprise, he said “No.” I told him it would be like Rollercoaster Tycoon– a game he and I used to play when we were kids where you build your own theme park and manage it. My brother said, “It can’t be just zombies. It’s gotta be werewolves, vampires, AND zombies.” Right then I knew every single ride that each creature was going to be showcased in. I started beating out the story that night with my characters. Fast forward three months later, Monsterland (the self-published version) arrives on Amazon and becomes an instant hit with audiences. Fast forward two years later and I have a literary agent, an entertainment attorney, a film agent, a publicist, a two-book publishing deal with a commercial publisher, and film interest with a very well-known producer – all centering on an idea about a theme park with real monsters that popped into my mind a couple years ago. It’s been some thrill ride.

 

Monsterland

by Michael Okon

 

GENRE:  Horror (Monsters)

 

 

 

BLURB:

Welcome to Monsterland—the scariest place on Earth. Wyatt Baldwin’s senior year is not going well. His parents divorce, then his dad mysteriously dies. He’s not exactly comfortable with his new stepfather, Carter White, either. An ongoing debate with his best friends Melvin and Howard Drucker over which monster is superior has gotten stale. He’d much rather spend his days with beautiful and popular Jade. However, she’s dating the brash high-school quarterback Nolan, and Wyatt thinks he doesn’t stand a chance. But everything changes when Wyatt and his friends are invited to attend the grand opening of Monsterland, a groundbreaking theme park where guests can interact with vampires in Vampire Village, be chased by werewolves on the River Run, and walk among the dead in Zombieville. With real werewolves, vampires and zombies as the main attractions, what could possibly go wrong?

 

Excerpt:

The sky was a sparkling, powder blue, mosquitoes droned lazily over the tepid water, frogs croaked messages while they sunbathed on waxy lily pads. The fire he created burned bright, rabbit roasting on a spit made from hickory, the juices dripping to hiss in the flames. Seven of them lay in scattered repose, enjoying the late afternoon lull—two napped, the others tossed a stuffed fur in the form of a ball around the clearing, hooting with amusement when it rolled into the brush. They traveled in a pack, his group, his makeshift family, foraging together, hiding in plain sight. It had been that way for generations. But the glades were getting smaller, the humans invasive.

The sun started its slow descent into the horizon, hot pink and lilac clouds rippling against the empty canvas of the sky. Their color deepened as the sky filled, the rosy hue morphing into a burnt orange as the sun hid behind the condensation. The air thickened, moisture causing the leaves to lie heavily against the branches. Here and there, fireflies lit the gloom, doing a placid ballet in the humid air. The men moved closer as the sun sank into the western treetops, the fading sky promising another clear day tomorrow in the Everglades despite the moving ceiling of clouds.

A lone hawk cried out, disturbing the peace of the glade. Huge birds answered, flapping their wings, creating a cacophony of swamp sounds. The area became a concerto of animals responding to the disruption of their home—wild screams, squeaks, and complaints of the invasion of their territory.

The lead male stood, his head tilted. He heard it again. It was music, the strange organization of sounds, predictable as well as dangerous. Where those rhythms originated meant only one thing—they were not alone. They all rose, tense and alert, searching the waterway. Billy pointed, his dirty hands silently parting an outcropping of trees to expose a flat-bottom boat with strangers floating slowly toward them. It was filled with people, excitedly searching the banks of the swamp, their expensive khaki bush clothes ringed with sweat. Many held huge cameras. It was obviously a film crew, invasive, nosy individuals looking for something, anything, to enhance their lives. Men’s voices drifted on the turgid air. Billy stood, sniffing, his mates following suit. He glanced at the sky, gauging the time, his eyes opening wide. It was late. The bald top of the moon peeked over the ridge in the south, the sky graying to twilight with each passing second. Night came fast and furious in the swamp, dropping a curtain of darkness, extinguishing all light except for the beacon of the full moon. That chalk-white orb floated upward, indifferent to the consequences of its innocent victims. A halo of lighter blue surrounded the globe, limning the trees silver, the cobwebs in the trees becoming chains of dripping diamonds in the coming night.

 

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Michael Okon is the award-winning and best-selling author & screenwriter formerly known as Michael Phillip Cash. His originally self-published book Monsterland was picked up in a two-book publishing deal by WordFire Press. Michael is happily married and writes full-time on the North Shore of Long Island with his two screaming monsters in the background.

 

For more information, details and updates, visit:

http://www.michaelokon.com

https://www.facebook.com/iammichaelokon

https://twitter.com/IAmMichaelOkon

 

Email Michael at MichaelOkonBooks@gmail.com

 

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Monsterland-Michael-Okon-ebook/dp/B0751F3B3S/

 

Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/monsterland-michael-okon/1126998959

 

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/monsterland-1

a Rafflecopter giveaway

New: Tova’s Dragon Ghost #Bookhugs by @LyndiLamont

Lyndi Lamont’s inspirational message: I believe love is a powerful force in this world. It brings lovers together, creates families and lives on after death in the hearts of those left behind. It may not make the world go ’round, but love makes the world a better place.

 

Tova’s Dragon

Steamy Paranormal Romance

By Lyndi Lamont

 

Blurb:

Seek help of the Lord of Drakkenberg. Only he can aid you. You must fly with the dragon.

Tova Svensdottir, an earth mage, is on a mission to save her homeland, the Kingdom of Velosia from the evil wizard Bruno of Grimmdorn. Her grandmother tells her to seek help of the Lord of Drakkenberg, but the old lord is dead. In his castle, high on a mountaintop, she instead encounters his son, the Outlaw Kane.

Kane fled Velosia after a futile attempt to rescue his father and his mate from Bruno’s cruel prison, killing the head guard in the process. Now that Bruno has been banished, Kane has returned to clear his name, but his purpose changes when he meets Tova.  Tova’s warmth stirs his passions and her courage touches his heart, but he dreads telling her of his true nature, certain she will recoil. But Tova is made of sterner stuff.

Together, Kane and Tova have the power to save Velosia. If they survive the coming battle. But can an earth mage find happiness with a dragonshifter?

 

Excerpt: 

Tova awoke to find herself on a soft bed wrapped in the embrace of a very hot, very aroused man. She opened her eyes to look around the dimly lit chamber, and everything came back to her—the climb up the mountain, the lightning storm, being guided to the cave, and the fall in the tunnel.

She squirmed around to stare at the man. “Where am I? And who you are?”

He flashed a reassuring smile. “I am Kane and this is my cave. You fell and hit your head.”

She studied the face just inches from her own. He was older than she, perhaps in his third decade. Long black hair hung down to his shoulders, and his eyes were a warm shade of amber under straight black brows. Her gaze dropped to sensual lips above a cleft chin. He was handsome as sin and naked to the waist. A shiver traveled up her spine and her heartbeat increased. Why did his name sound familiar?

Around his neck he wore a heavy gold chain with a large, luminous pearl dangling from it. When she reached out to touch the pearl, she sensed power radiating from it, from him. “You guided me to the cave, did you not? I thank you.”

“You are welcome, daughter of earth.”

She smiled at the apt nickname. “I am called Tova Svensdottir.”

He nodded in acknowledgement. “How are you feeling, Mistress Tova?”

She assessed the situation. Though warmer, her head still hurt and her energy was depleted. Self-healing would take a long time in this state. “Better, but still weak.”

“I am not surprised, given your ordeal. Where were you headed in such a hurry, and what on earth brought you to my mountain? Are you lost?”

She hesitated, uncertain whether to trust him. Mutti Zee’s instructions echoed in her head and she plunged ahead. “I seek the Lord of Drakkenberg.”

Kane raised his brows. “You have come to the right place, though the old lord is dead.”

Suddenly, she realized who he was and scooted away from him. ’Twas just her luck to be rescued by the most feared outlaw in the land. “Please do not hurt me, Kane of Drakkenberg.”

With a sigh, he rose from the bed, clad only in his breeches and hose. He stared down at her, an earnest look on his face. “I would never hurt you, Mistress Tova. I am not the monster legend depicts me.” He ran a hand through his hair. “Well, not entirely.”

 

About the Author:

Lyndi Lamont is the racy alter ego of romance author Linda McLaughlin. Writing sexy stories gives her a license to be naughty, at least between the pages of her books! She has written several full-length novels plus numerous short stories and novellas, ranging from historical to futuristic. She believes that love is unending and universal, and enjoys transporting her readers into a different world where her characters learn that, in the journey of life, love is the sweetest reward.

Connect online:

Website: https://lindalyndi.com

Reading Room blog: http://lindalyndi.com/reading-room-blog/

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/LyndiLamont

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/LyndiLamont

Twitter: @LyndiLamont

 

Amazon pre-order links:


US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07635W1SR or short link: Link: http://a.co/iYJcdeF
AU:  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07635W1SR/ or http://a.co/1Lqtbo4
CA: https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B07635W1SR/ or http://a.co/7I5GLe3
UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07635W1SR/ or http://amzn.eu/5j6oPEA

#OctoberFrights Blog Hop Oct. 10-15: Dark Love Rising by Danita Minnis

Welcome to the October Frights Blog Hop! Join our rafflecopter below to win some fabulous prizes. I’m giving away a copy of my ghostly love story, Adderley’s Bride.

For chills and thrills this scary season, lets talk ghosts and vampires.

Ever felt the hair on the back of your neck lift when staring into the dark? In Adderley’s Bride, Sophie has a feeling someone is watching her. It’s just Gray, the ghost who loves her. He has a plan of his own; be with me. Nice plan if you call that living.

 

 

 

 

In my vampire romance Dark Love RisingQuinn’s never loved any of his women. Why should Layla be any different? Besides, an assassin’s life is just one murder after another. He has no time for love. What he doesn’t know is that Layla is a vampire and she has all the time in the world. They have more in common than he’ll ever know; her life is also one murder after another.

 

 

 

 

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Enjoy the Hop!

1. http://afstewartb… Are You Afraid of the Dark? 19. www.kellymartinbo… Kelly Martin
2. girlzombieauthors… GirlZombieAuthors 20. depressioncookies… Tia Bach
3. Jim-Mcdonald.net James P McDonald 21. www.bloodredshado… Barbara Custer
4. www.debbiechristi… CURIOSITIES – Debbie Christiana 22. www.nickronomicon… Nicholas Paschall
5. letaphawk.wordpre… Hawk’s Happenings 23. patricialynne.wee… Patricia Lynne
6. alicedesampaiokal… Alice de Sampaio Kalkuhl 24. mreneedramaqueen…. M’Renee Allen
7. carmillavoiez.wix… Carmilla Voiez Horror Author 25. ash-krafton.blogs… Ash Krafton
8. stephanieayersaut… Stephanie Ayers 26. www.clairecriley…. Claire C. Riley
9. mhablas.blogspot…. McCallum J. Morgan 27. kmcooper.ca/my-li… K. M. Cooper
10. blog.danitaminnis… Danita Minnis 28. themusingwriter.b… Rebekkah
11. www.solitaryminds… Philip Harris 29. www.slipperywords… JD Blackrose
12. www.authorcarolin… Caroline A. Gill 30. hiddenworldsbooks… Hidden Worlds Books
13. frightenme.weebly… Naching T. Kassa 31. www.meganorussell… Megan O’Russell
14. stevevernonstoryt… Steve Vernon 32. greydogtales.com John Linwood Grant
15. ourwriteside.com OWS Ink 33. themacabreauthor…. Anne Hogue-Boucher
16. katiemjohn.blogsp… Katie M. John 34. forromanceloverso… Hello Romance
17. www.authorsloanem… Sloane Murphy 35. maryrajotte.com/b… Mary Rajotte
18. laviniaurban.blog… Lavinia Urban 36. missscarlettflame… Scarlett Flame

Jeanette Watts: Jane Austen Lied to Me

http://goddessfishpromotions.blogspot.com/2017/08/vbt-jane-austen-lied-to-me-by-jeanette.html

Jeanette Watts will be awarding a doll dressed in Regency clothing, handcrafted by the author (International Giveaway) to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

 

Author Interview

  1. Woohoo! You are a published author. Describe a strong character trait you possess, good or bad, and how it helped you become a published author. Polish stubbornness. My German husband says Germans are the most stubborn people on earth, but I beg to differ. Poland was wiped completely off the map on more than one occasion, and you’ll notice it didn’t stay that way.  You have to believe in yourself. I really almost never doubt myself. When I was publishing my first book, I spent five years talking to agents who all loved my book, but wanted to change it. I changed it to please them, then they didn’t like my book anymore! I concluded that the problem wasn’t my book, the problem is that agents are crazy.

 

  1. Sometimes an author begins writing a story before they are aware of its genre. Did you choose your genre, or did it choose you? Oh goodness, it definitely chose me! I’ve been cheerfully writing historical fiction, but then I’m driving home from the Jane Austen Festival when the idea for this modern satire came to me. Next thing you know, I’ve written this romantic comedy that really wants to b a Broadway musical someday. And that’s how it should be. Inspiration should come first. If you sit there saying, “Hey, I want to write a murder mystery thriller,” and then you sit around waiting for inspiration, well, it could get to be a long wait. And the end result will probably not be very good.

 

  1. The plot thickens, or does it? Which one are you, a pantser or a plotter? I tried to be a plotter. Jane Austen Lied to Me started out plotted. It’s a satire, I don’t think you can NOT plot out a satire. But then it took on a life of its own. The protagonist didn’t always do as she was told. The book has also changed drastically from one draft to the next. I plotted out a much more satirical piece, and it didn’t really have a happy ending. It was funny, but not your typical happy ending. My first round of beta test readers all thought my heroine wasn’t sympathetic enough, and they wanted a happy ending. So I rewrote. And rewrote. The characters told me what happens next, which wasn’t always what I’d planned. But I think the most important thing writers – and for that matter, actors – need to do is stay true to the character.

 

  1. Fear 101: As writers it is our duty to make our characters face their fears. Have you ever included one of your own fears in a storyline? Um, maybe? I’m not afraid of much. I think it’s reprehensible for societies to dwell on people’s fears. It brings out the worst of people, instead of the best of them. None of my books are about fear. They are about negotiating a path through Life, which is an endless series of obstacles we have to overcome. At least in fiction, we get to stop and celebrate our victories once in a while. In life, sometimes we have to remember to stop and celebrate the victories.

 

  1. Fear 102: Yes, deadlines are terrifying. Have you conquered the juggling act between writing and the rest of your life? What do you do when it feels like the balls are dropping all around you? The nice thing about being an independent publisher is the deadlines are self-imposed. The juggling act has nothing to do with fear, and a lot to do with distractions. The important thing with writing is to make it a priority. If the laundry doesn’t get done, but the writing does, you’ve got things prioritized right. I tend to prefer a lot of balls in the air; while writing novels, I have also been teaching dance classes at the local community college, running a belly dance troupe and a cancan troupe and a Vintage dance troupe, and run a Friday night social ballroom club. Then I must have gotten bored for a second, because 5 years ago I started the Genteel Outing and Expedition Society, a club that dresses up in Victorian costumes once a month and goes out to do something. Ice skating, archery lessons, bowling, the opera, museum exhibitions… something. All these distractions do not help me get more writing done. But the fact that I have a life rich in playtime and playmates means my brain stays sharp and creative. And happy. I never get writer’s block. Knock on wood…

 

  1. Switch positions with one of your main characters in a scene. What is the outcome, disaster or divine intervention? Hm… since Kali, the Indian Goddess of Chaos and the Destroyer of Egos is my patron goddess, disaster and divine intervention are not necessarily mutually exclusive.

 

  1. Where is your favorite place to write? Add that one comfort food that you can’t do without. I like to write in pretty places. When my husband has to travel for conferences, I love to go along and spend the day writing in those big hotel lobbies with lots of couches, and sometimes a bar or restaurant attached. I have friends who let me use their cabin in Canada on Lake Erie for a week. While I was up there, I discovered there were a dozen wineries in the area. One of the wineries had two story tall glass windows with an even grander view of Lake Erie. I’ve rented a cabin in Allegheny National Forest, and a cottage next to the Atlantic Ocean near Boston. When the only distraction is the pretty view when you look up from your writing, it keeps the creative juices flowing. It also helps when these pretty places have no cell signal, so you can’t be distracted by texts and emails and phone calls.

I only get ONE comfort food??? I’d better go with carbohydrates. That way pizza and donuts and pasta are all included. And kringle. Are there carbohydrates in chocolate?

 

  1. Writing inspirations? I’ve only just realized right this second that all of the authors who have inspired me are women. Margaret Mitchell. Laura Ingalls Wilder. Louisa May Alcott. Dorothy Parker. I do happen to adore David McCullough and Shelby Foote, but while biographies are my favorite things to read, I don’t write biographies. So I’m not sure the gentlemen count as inspirations.

 

  1. You are introduced to your favorite author. Who is it, and what is that one burning question you must ask them? I did actually get to meet David McCullough!! My burning question was, “Can I give you a present?” My first novel, Wealth and Privilege, is set in Western Pennsylvania between 1875-1889. It ends in the Johnstown Flood – The Johnstown Flood was Mr. McCullough’s first book. I relied upon his book heavily in my research. He was the native guide who led me to all the rest of my primary source material. I was allowed to give him a copy of my book. Now I guess if I got to meet him again, my next question would be, “Did you read it/did you like it?” Okay, that’s two questions….

 

  1. I’ve gone mad – why don’t you come with me? Some people just don’t understand us writers. Name a quirky, writer-thing you do that friends wish you didn’t. Well, I don’t know if it has anything to do with being a writer, or if it’s just being me… but I’m sure my friends wish I flirted less. I flirt with everyone. The cashiers at the grocery store. (My advice to everyone is always talk to the cashier at the grocery store. He or she is having a bad day. I can almost guarantee it. Some cranky customer just ruined their day about half an hour ago.) Small children waiting in line at the post office. Bank tellers. People on the phone doing customer service.

The problem with my flirting is I’m not very original. Any time I make a phone call, or walk in a store, or the bank, or wherever, people are going to ask you, “How can I help you?” I always, always reply, “Oh, honey, I’m beyond help.” And then I state my business. At least, when the person I’m talking to stops laughing. I almost always get a laugh. Whenever I go to a restaurant, which is a minimum of once a week, the waiter or waitress will be guaranteed to introduce themselves. “Hi, I’m Chris, I’ll be taking care of you today.” I always answer “That’s good. We’ll be as much trouble as we can.” The answers I get are varied, ranging from noncomittal (which is rare) to extremely clever. My favorite answer so far was the waitress who said, without missing a beat, “Okay, I’ll go get reinforcements.” She got a really big tip.

The whole point of these predictable one-liners of mine is that I’m having a brief but meaningful exchange with the intended audience, the sales clerk or the waitress. But my friends have to listen to me say the same one-liner over, and over, and over, and over… I’m sure they are heartily sick of hearing it. The problem is, they aren’t the intended audience. I’m not going to stop saying it so long as I get a laugh, and an ice breaker that lets me see a little more about these strangers I will probably never meet again.

 

 

Jane Austen Lied to Me

by Jeanette Watts

 

GENRE: Humor

 

 

BLURB:

What college girl doesn’t dream of meeting Mr. Darcy? Lizzie was certainly no exception. But when Darcy Fitzwilliam comes into her life, he turns out to be every bit as aggravating as Elizabeth Bennett’s Fitzwilliam Darcy. So what’s a modern girl to do?

Jeanette Watts’ satire pokes loving fun at Jane and all of us who worship the characters who shall forever be our romantic ideals.

 

 

Excerpt:

Well!  That was interesting.  My roommate invited me along to this frat party she was going to.  She went through something called rush week, and she is now pledged to a sorority.  She said the frats are less formal than the sororities, and even though I wasn’t a pledge I could go with her.  I figured, why not, it should be fun, right?

I got to meet the guy she’s chasing.  I couldn’t blame her for being interested.  He’s cute, and sweet, and considerate, and a total people-pleaser.  One of his parents must be the demanding sort who is never happy.

He introduced us to his friend… whose name is Darcy Fitzwilliam!  I wasn’t sure at first that the guy wasn’t just pulling our legs.

“Your mother obviously loves Jane Austen,” I laughed.

“Obviously,” he answered.  Not much to go by.”

“I love Pride and Prejudice,” I continued.

“I hate Pride and Prejudice.” I can only describe the look he was giving me as hostile.

“I think you will find yourself very much in a minority,” I answered, returning his look with one of my own.

We didn’t talk any more that night.  Talk about getting off on the wrong foot!

 

 

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Jeanette Watts had been writing historic fiction when the inspiration for Jane Austen Lied to Me hit her on the drive home from the Jane Austen Festival. The idea was simply irresistible, and she put aside other writing projects in order to focus on writing a satire, thinking it would be a “mental vacation.” It turned out to take every bit as much research to write a modern story as it does to write a historical one.

She has written television commercials, marketing newspapers, stage melodramas, four screenplays, three novels, and a textbook on waltzing.  When she isn’t writing, she teaches social ballroom dances, refinishes various parts of her house, and sews historical costumes and dance costumes for her Cancan troupe.

 

Links:

Webpage

www.JeanetteWatts.com

 

Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/jeanette.watts.94

https://www.facebook.com/Jane-Austen-Lied-to-Me-342613389485243/

 

Twitter

@JeanetteAWatts

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tina Gayle: Summer’s Growth #BookHugs

 

 

Inspiration – A heart can be broken in many ways don’t let it be from not reaching out to the people you call friends with a helping hand. (Enjoy the #bookhugs exchange)

 

Blurb for Summer’s Growth.

In the spirit-haunted Winston estate in Ohio, rooted in time and occupied by the lingering ghosts of a great family, the torch is about to pass…

Mattie Winston, sober, sensible, and steady, has served as Keeper to the family for decades. Amber Harrison, hovering on the edge of flunking out of college, unsure what she wants out of life, has barely even heard of the Winston estate. The family, however, has decided that it’s time for the changing of the guard. These two exceptional women soon find themselves dealing with violence, murder attempts, and old family mysteries while each finding the love of her life. Two romances and a growing friendship, all twined around a brooding family tragedy, make for an outstanding paranormal mystery offering depth and charm beyond the commonplace. The growing love of Amber and Carter and of Mattie and Quincy offer readers a tender and engaging first novel in a winning new paranormal series.

 

Excerpt

“Yes, I spoke to your father. My name is Mattie Winston. I’m the present keeper of the Winston Estate. It’s my job to show you how to be the new keeper.”

The term puzzled Amber. “Keeper? Keeper of what?”

“Why of the estate!” The woman appeared shocked by the question.

“Keeper of the estate? What does that mean?”

“Don’t worry.” Mattie repositioned herself on the couch and patted nervously at her hair for stray strands. “We’ll have plenty of time to talk later. You’ve traveled a long way and must be tired and hungry.” She pointed to a platter of little triangle sandwiches on the coffee table. “Please help yourself.”

She leaned forward and picked up a glass.

Amber’s stomach growled. Other than a donut on the way out of her apartment, she’d not eaten much over the course of the day.

With a small sandwich in her hand, Amber considered Mattie’s comment and pressed the issue. “What exactly is a keeper? I thought I was supposed to inherit the estate.”

“Yes, well, the keeper is also the person who takes care of the trust fund, which includes the estate.” The lady’s hands didn’t settle. They fluttered in her lap without finding a resting place.

Her apparent anxiety confused Amber. She couldn’t figure out a reason for her nervousness. But sympathy for the lady enticed Amber into changing the subject. “How long have you lived here?”

“I’ve lived in Ohio all my life. But I’ve lived in Winston Manor for about thirty years.” Mattie’s mouth broke into a small, almost shy smile.

Strange after thirty years, why switch the family keeper, or caretaker or whatever they called them? The lady didn’t look old.

Why leave? Did her family want to move? “Does anyone else live here?”

Mattie paused for a long moment. “Well, there are a few others around.”

“Are you married?”

The woman shook her head.

“Is that part of the keeper’s job—not to be married?”

 

Read the 1st Chapter of Summer’s Growth at www.tinagayle.net/sgchapter.html

 

Buy Link:

Amazon Smashwords B&N Apple Itunes Kobo 

 

Bio:

Tina Gayle grew up a dreamer and loved to escape into the world of books. After a number of different jobs, she decided to try her hand at writing. Her romantic novels touch the heart and explore the heartaches of falling in love and being a woman.

Married thirty years, she and her husband love to travel and play golf.  If you’d like to read the 1st chapter of her books visit her website.

 

Find Tina Gayle everywhere

Home – www.tinagayle.net

Blog – www.tinagayle.blogspot.com

Twitter – https://twitter.com/#!/AuthorTinaGayle

Goodread – http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1641826.Tina_Gayle

Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/tina.gayle

Google + – https://plus.google.com

Linkedin – http://www.linkedin.com/pub/tina-gayle/11/689/759

 

 

Author Interview: Peggy Jaeger – A Shot At Love

http://goddessfishpromotions. blogspot.com/2017/08/vbt-shot- at-love-by-peggy-jaeger.html

Peggy Jaeger will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

 

 

Author Interview

  1. Woohoo! You are a published author. Describe a strong character trait you possess, good or bad, and how it helped you become a published author.

This is a great question. I am very very VERY nosy. Strongly nosy. I am always upfront with people and say this before I start speaking with them: “Just fyi, I’m nosy. If you don’t want to answer or talk to me, I understand.” I’ve never had anyone say they didn’t!!! What’s that old saw? Honesty is the best policy? It has been for me.

Being nosy has helped me so much as a writer because hand-in-hand with the nosiness goes eavesdrop-pery. I lovelovelove to listen to people talk and interact when they don’t know I am listening. On line in Panera; at the movies waiting for the film to start; at the bank listening to how people speak to the Tellers. This trait has made me a very good dialogue writer. Every writing contest I’ve ever entered and every editor I’ve ever worked with have consistently mentioned my strong, dead-on, perfect dialogue skills.

2. Sometimes an author begins writing a story before they are aware of its genre. Did you choose your genre, or did it choose you?

I chose romance. Pure and simple. The HEA (Happily Ever After) story is my favorite to read, so I knew it was going to be the one I wanted to tell. If a little mystery, or a little suspense eeks in, well, that’s okay. But at its heart and core, my books are all pure romance stories.

3. The plot thickens, or does it? Which one are you, a pantser or a plotter?

Before I answer that, I have to tell you I have a scientific background. I’ve been a Registered Nurse for 150 years ( kidding, but close. Really close!) and I was trained in the scientific method. I’ve found with most decisions in my life, and how I approach events and circumstance, the scientific approach is what works best for me. Analyze, gather information, formulate a hypothesis, experiment. Make changes along the way if need be. That’s been how I live my life and have worked my career.

I told you all that to tell you the reason I am a plotter first, last and always. I need to know what direction I am in going in and where I plan to end up before I ever type “CHAPTER ONE.” Before I begin to type a word I have all my characters planned out, the setting is precise, I know my GMC ( Goal Motivation Conflict) for each and every character. I could never write a book flying by the seat of my pants. Well..I probably could. But I’d be a wreck doing it!

4. Fear 101: As writers it is our duty to make our characters face their fears. Have you ever included one of your own fears in a storyline?

Not yet, but in a book I’m currently planning out I am having the heroine do just that. I don’t like to talk about stuff during the planning stages, though, so….

5. Fear 102: Yes, deadlines are terrifying. Have you conquered the juggling act between writing and the rest of your life? What do you do when it feels like the balls are dropping all around you?

I will start this off by saying I am blessed. I retired in 2015 when I got my first publishing contract. I always told my husband I planned on quitting when I became a published author. I don’t know which of us was more surprised when I did!

Just because I’m retired now it doesn’t mean I sit around and watch reruns of I love Lucy all day. I have a very strict writing routine. I’m at my desk in my home office at 4 am everyday. 2 hours of social media postings and promos later, I go to the gym for an hour because, you know….I sit all day and… backsides spread. Just saying. After the gym I write from3-4 hours then have lunch and do the life things like laundry, grocery shop, etc. Afternoon brings another 3-4 hours of writing and then I start thinking about dinner for hubby. On weekends I don’t work on my WIP (Writing in progress) but I do write  my blog posts for the week and schedule them to upload on their assigned days.

Luckily, my daughter is grown and out of the house and my husband still works 14 hours a day so I have a great deal of alone time in which to write and get the life stuff taken care without interruptions or annoyances.

Like I said: I’m blessed.

6. Switch positions with one of your main characters in a scene. What is the outcome, disaster or divine intervention?

In my current release A SHOT AT LOVE, Gemma is 28. If I switch with her and DON’T get to be her age, the scene I am envisioning would need a divine intervention for me to survive!!! There is a great deal of physical stuff I can no longer do at 57 that I could do at 28!!! ‘Nuff said.

7. Where is your favorite place to write? Add that one comfort food that you can’t do without. The only place I write is in my office. It’s on the third floor of my home, overlooking our back forest property. I watch the seasons change outside my window daily! I love that. Although it’s not exactly a comfort food, I couldn’t do without my daily hit of Diet Mountain Dew. The caffeine kick keeps me focused and awake because I don’t routinely drink coffee or tea.

8. Writing inspirations?

SO many to list  and I don’t want to run out of space! First and foremost NORA ROBERTS/JD ROBB. The first time I met her I burst into tears because, you know…it was HER! She took my hand, told me in no uncertain terms to quit crying and asked me about my writing. Love her. Love the way she writes. Love the way she turns every emotional key in my body.

Jill Shalvis and Sarah Morgan. They make me laugh, they make me cry, they  make me wish I was a better writer!

Sandra Brown. I would read a book about the alphabet if she wrote it!

Jennifer Probst  A very different writing style than the others, but again, she makes me laugh while she’s breaking and then repairing my heart and that’s not an easy thing for a writer to do!

9. You are introduced to your favorite author. Who is it, and what is that one burning question you must ask them? Already happened. Nora Roberts, one of the most prolific writers EVER! I met her in 2015, burst out in tears, and when they stopped I was finally able to ask her this: “Do you ever sleep?” She burst out laughing, hugged me, and said, “Like a baby, every night!”

10. I’ve gone mad – why don’t you come with me? Some people just don’t understand us writers. Name a quirky, writer-thing you do that friends wish you didn’t.

I carry a notebook with me everywhere and I will stop talking with someone or cease whatever we are doing  if an idea pops into my head or if I hear a line of dialogue I want to remember for a future book or character trait. Drives my girl friends crazy because I will stop in the middle of the mall while we are walking to another store, or I will walk out on a movie if inspiration hits me just so I can write the idea down and not forget it. I don’t think I ‘ve seen a movie or a theatrical show all the way through in 15 years.

 

Danita- these were great questions! I may steal one or two for my own blog interviews!!! Thanks for hosting me today.

 

A Shot At Love

by Peggy Jaeger

 

GENRE:   Contemporary Romance

 

BLURB:

Nothing’s impossible when love is on the menu. In Peggy Jaeger’s luscious series, the only thing more tempting than a delicious meal is a truly delectable romance . . . Look for exclusive recipes in each book! Photographer Gemma Laine is looking for arresting faces on the streets of Manhattan when her camera captures something shocking—a triple murder. In that moment, she becomes a target for the mob—and a top priority for a very determined, breathtakingly handsome, FBI special agent. With deadlines to meet and photo shoots on her calendar, Gemma chafes at the idea of protection, but every moment she spends under his watchful eye is a temptation to lose herself in his muscular arms . . . With two of his men and one crucial witness dead, Special Agent Kyros Pappandreos can’t afford to be distracted. But Gemma is dazzling—and her connection to Kandy Laine’s high-profile cooking empire makes her an especially easy mark for some very bad people. Keeping her safe is much more pleasure than business, but as the heat between them starts to sizzle, Ky is set to investigate whether they have a shot at love . . .

 

Excerpt:

A woman stood next to the vehicle, a cell phone at her ear, her back to him. Tall, maybe as tall as him, and slender, her back tapered down to a miniscule waist, her legs clad in tight, faded jeans. When she turned Ky almost stopped midstride, the questions he intended to grill her with jumping out of his head. His breath caught as he simply stared at the loveliest woman he’d ever seen.

Hair the color of midnight, straight as a board, fell to just below her shoulders, blowing back from her face in the gentle afternoon breeze. Blunt, chopped bangs, fringed a pair of large, bright blue eyes. Plump, coral colored lips moved as she spoke into the phone and for a brief, hot second, Ky wondered if they’d taste as delicious as they looked.

Her gaze stayed on him as she spoke.

“I’ve gotta go,” she said into the phone. “Yeah. I’ll call when I’m done. Love you, too.”

“Miss Laine?”

She tucked the phone into her back pocket.

“I’m Special Agent Pappandreos. I need to speak with you about what you saw.”

“Special Agent?” Those delicate brows furrowed under her bangs. “Like, FBI?”

Jesus, where does a woman get a voice like that? Whiskey laced with honey and rolled into one smooth pitch.

 

Author Bio and Links:

Peggy Jaeger is a contemporary romance writer who writes about strong women, the families who support them, and the men who can’t live without them.

Family and food play huge roles in Peggy’s stories because she believes there is nothing that holds a family structure together like sharing a meal…or two…or ten. Dotted with humor and characters that are as real as they are loving, Peggy brings all topics of daily life into her stories: life, death, sibling rivalry, illness and the desire for everyone to find their own happily ever after. Growing up the only child of divorced parents she longed for sisters, brothers and a family that vowed to stick together no matter what came their way. Through her books, she has created the families she wanted as that lonely child.

Tying into her love of families, her children’s book, THE KINDNESS TALES, was illustrated by her artist mother-in-law.

Peggy holds a master’s degree in Nursing Administration and first found publication with several articles she authored on Alzheimer’s Disease during her time running an Alzheimer’s in-patient care unit during the 1990s.

In 2013, she placed first in two categories in the Dixie Kane Memorial Contest: Single Title Contemporary Romance and Short/Long Contemporary Romance.

In 2017 she came in 3rd in the New England Reader’s Choice contest for A KISS UNDER THE CHRISTMAS LIGHTS and is a finalist in the 2017 STILETTO contest for the same title.

A lifelong and avid romance reader and writer, she is a member of RWA and her local New Hampshire RWA Chapter.

 

Website/Blog: http://peggyjaeger.com/

 

Twitter: https://twitter.com/peggy_jaeger

 

Amazon Author page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00T8E5LN0

 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Peggy-Jaeger-Author/825914814095072?ref=bookmarks

 

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/peggyjaeger/

 

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13478796.Peggy_Jaeger

 

Instagram: https://instagram.com/mmj122687/

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Becky Flade: A Love Restrained #BookHugs Author Exchange

#BookHugs #ALoveRestrained

 

 

A Love Restrained 

by Becky Flade

Philadelphia police officer Kylee Parker is dedicated to protecting and serving. She sees the work in absolutes: right and wrong, black and white, good guys and bad guys. That is, until she chases a drug dealer into a dead-end alley and finds the bad boy she had a painful crush on throughout her teen years has turned into a more dangerous and more attractive man.

Jayson Donovan knows he doesn’t deserve someone as good as Kylee Parker. As the right hand man to a local drug-pushing mobster, he’s solidly on the wrong side of Kylee’s moral compass. But he can’t help reaching for her time and again when he knows he shouldn’t.

Even when his secrets threaten them both.

 

Where to purchase A Love Restrained

Amazon US | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords | iBooks | Kobo

Enjoy the following excerpt from A Love Restrained:

Spring in the city brought people out of winter hibernation like a siren song, but as the temperature rose, so in turn, did the crime rate. Cops had to be sharp as they walked the streets of Philadelphia. In her ten years on the force, on these streets, she’d seen a lot of crazy and often stupid criminals do a lot of crazy and often stupid things. But to be so brazen, or so plain dumb, as to do a hand-to-hand drug buy right in front of two uniformed officers rode high on her list of top ten.

“Tell me you saw that?”

“Saw what?” Hunks of half chewed soft pretzel fell from Sherman’s mouth.

Pete Sherman’s not a bad cop, just not an observant one whose paunch portrayed his love of all things fried and his reupholstered recliner. He hadn’t seen a thing in the last six months. But he took direction well, despite the fact he had seniority.

“There, across the street.” She pointed. “The junkie walking east just scored off the guy in the leather bomber heading west. I swear the dealer looked right at us before the exchange. Call it in, Pete, and grab the junkie. I’m going after the dealer.”

Sherman didn’t argue. She took off into a quick lope, kept her footsteps light so as to not alert the man she pursued. The spring day had drawn people out and the complaints of the pedestrians she weaved through grew loud. The guy glanced over his shoulder, and the edge of his mouth tipped into a grin before he sprinted around the corner.

“Cocky jerk.” She turned the corner, and shouted, “Stop! Police.”

She ran clean and fast, closing the distance between them with little effort. The dealer ducked into an alley she knew to be a dead end. She slowed and put one hand on the butt of her service pistol as she approached. He had his back to her, his hands on his hips as he stared at the brick wall in front of him.

“Philly PD, you’re under arrest. Slowly put your hands above your head and against the wall to your left.” She closed the few feet between them, using her free hand to release the handcuffs from her belt, the other remaining on her weapon. She cuffed him, with practiced efficiency, and then read him his rights before leading him out of the alley, preferring to do the pat down with her partner present.

“Kylee Parker, I’ll admit I daydreamed a time or two about you cuffing me, but it was never in this context.”

For more information, including cover art, trailer and buy links, see:

http://www.tirgearrpublishing.com/authors/Flade_Becky/a-love-restrained.htm

 

About the Author:

Home is where the heart is and Becky makes hers with her very own knight in slightly tarnished armor, their three daughters, son-in-law, two grandsons, and their psychotic cat Jaxon. When she’s not busy living her own happily ever after, she’s writing about someone else’s.

Contact Details:

http://www.beckyfladeauthor.com/

https://www.facebook.com/BeckyFlade

https://twitter.com/beckyflade

http://www.amazon.com/Becky-Flade/

http://www.goodreads.com/Becky_Flade

 

#BookHugs

Jim Henson once said, “My hope is to leave the world a bit better than when I got here.” I live my life by that same ideal; it’s posted in my office, on my media stand in fact, so that I never forget to be kind, thoughtful and considerate in every interaction. May your every dream be a reality and every day a poem.

Desiree Holt on Tour: Hide and Seek

http://goddessfishpromotions.blogspot.com/2017/08/blurb-blitz-hide-and-seek-by-desiree.html

Desiree will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

 

Hide and Seek

by Desiree Holt

GENRE: Romantic Suspense

BLURB:

Anything can happen when you let your guard down . . .

After receiving a violent threat on the heels of her father’s disappearance from the town of Arrowhead Bay, Devon Cole fears for her life—until Vigilance, a local private security agency, steps in to shield her from danger. Although she isn’t usually quick to surrender her freedom, she has no problem stripping her defenses for her new sexy bodyguard . . .

Tortured by the painful memory of lost love, Logan Malik is determined not to fall for a client again. So when he’s tasked with watching over Devon day and night, he’s focused on doing his job. Day is no problem, but as tensions rise at night, nothing can protect them from giving in to unbridled passion . .

This Blurb Blitz is for pre-order promotion only, there are no excerpts provided

 

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Desiree Holt is the world’s oldest living published author of erotic and spicy romance. A graduate of the University of Michigan with double majors in English and History, her earlier careers include agent and manager in the music industry, public television, associate vice president of university advancement, public relations, and economic development.

She is three times a finalist for an EPIC E-Book Award (and a winner in 2014), a nominee for a Romantic Times Reviewers Choice Award, winner of the first 5 Heart Sweetheart of the Year Award at The Romance Studio as well as twice a CAPA Award winner for best BDSM book of the year, a USA Today Bestselling author and winner of the Holt Medallion for Excellence in Romance Literature.

She has been featured on CBS Sunday Morning and in The Village Voice, The Daily Beast, USA Today, The (London) Daily Mail, The New Delhi Times, The Huffington Post and numerous other national and international publications. She is also the Authors After Dark 2014 Author of the Year.

 

“Desiree Holt is the most amazing erotica author of our time and each story is more fulfilling then the last.” (Romance Junkies)

Learn more about her and read her novels here:

www.desireeholt.com

www.desiremeonly.com

www.facebook.com/desireeholtauthor

www.faceboook.com/authordesireeholt

Twitter @desireeholt

Pinterest: desiree02holt

Google: https://plus.google.com/113212301982441064210

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/desiree-holt-a7272526/

 

Note:  The book is on pre-order for only $2.99!  The pre-purchase link is here:

http://www.kensingtonbooks.com/book.aspx/35516

All readers who pre-order will receive exclusive content and will be entered into a drawing for an action-packed prize-package, including:

A copy of HIDE AND SEEK by Desiree Holt

A $5 Amazon gift card

An Alex & Ani nautical charm bracelet in green velvet bag

Kensington “Romance Socks” which feature HIDE AND SEEK

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Lisa Berne: The Laird Takes a Bride

http://goddessfishpromotions. blogspot.com/2017/08/blurb- blitz-tour-laird-takes-bride- by.html

Three digital copies of the book will be awarded to three randomly drawn winners via rafflecopter during the tour.

THE LAIRD TAKES A BRIDE

by Lisa Berne

GENRE:  Historical Romance

BLURB:

Alasdair Penhallow, laird of his clan and master of Castle Tadgh, is forced to end his carefree bachelorhood, thanks to an ancient decree that requires him to marry. But Alasdair’s search for a biddable wife comes to a screeching halt when Fate serves up Fiona Douglass. Prickly as a thistle, Fiona challenges him at every turn, rendering herself surprisingly irresistible. Her love would be a prize indeed . . . if Alasdair could accept it.

Fiona gave her heart once, and doesn’t plan to repeat that folly. Yet she finds herself drawn to Alasdair’s intelligence and strength, and the passion he incites goes well beyond her expectations for what’s only a marriage of expedience. Despite herself, she’s falling in love with her husband.

But there’s a high wall between them—and Fiona’s not sure it can ever be torn down.

 

Excerpt:

Fiona had never told Nairna that. She knew that seventeen-year-old Nairna was madly in love with Logan Munro, and as for Logan, who could fault him for preferring sweet Nairna Douglass, as soft and playful as a kitten, petite and rounded in all the right places and with masses of dark curls that framed her piquant little face most fetchingly? Who wouldn’t prefer Nairna to Fiona, at eighteen painfully thin and gawky and oversensitive, who blurted things out and tripped over her own feet? Especially since, at that moment in time, Nairna’s dowry had been substantially greater than Fiona’s.

It all made total sense.

Even back then, in the darkest period of her devastation, Fiona hadn’t been able to summon resentment or hostility toward Nairna, whom she had loved — still loved — with the fierce, protective devotion of an oldest sister for her younger siblings.

To be sure, there was a secret part of her, a sad and cowardly part, that would have driven her far from home on this lovely summer’s day, where she wouldn’t be forced to look upon Logan Munro’s handsome face, but to this desire she hadn’t succumbed; wild horses couldn’t have kept her from attending Rossalyn’s wedding. She had, though, slid inconspicuously into the very last pew. She did this also as a kindness to her fellow guests. Even with her hair twisted into smooth braids, all coiled together and set low on her nape, she was so tall that she could easily block the view of others behind her. Nonetheless, and thanks to her accursed height, she could plainly see Logan where he sat, several pews away, next to Nairna.

Logan’s hair was still black as a raven’s wing, still thick. His shoulders were still broad and heavily muscled beneath the fine mulberry-colored fabric of his fashionable coat.

And, Fiona realized, a heart could still physically hurt, could ache painfully within one’s breast, even after nine long years.

She made herself look away from Logan.

Instead she gazed down at her hands, loosely clasped in her lap. Hands that weren’t white as they ought to be, fingers that were a little coarsened by riding without gloves, by long hours working in her garden.

Around her slim — the less charitable might even have said bony — wrist was looped the silken cord of her reticule.

Surreptitiously Fiona loosened the opening of the reticule and pulled out a small piece of paper, quietly unfolding it. On it she had written her latest list.

Ask Dallis — when new baby due?

Avoid Logan

5 sheep with bloody scours, 2 with rupturing blisters — why?

Help Aunt Bethia find her spectacles (bedchamber? solarium?)

Avoid Logan

Avoid Cousin Isobel, too

Mother’s birthday next Saturday

Tell Burns — STOP cutting roses too early

Avoid Logan

Avoid Logan

Fiona withdrew a small pencil from her reticule and added another item.

Stop thinking about Logan

 

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Lisa Berne read her first Georgette Heyer book at fourteen, and was instantly captivated. Later, she was a graduate student, a grantwriter, and an investment banker, but is thrilled to be returning to her roots and writing her own historical-romance novels! She lives with her family in the Pacific Northwest.

 

https://www.harpercollins.com

http://lisaberne.com/ 

https://www.facebook.com/Lisa-Berne-279041179126276/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15376364.Lisa_Berne

 

Buy Links:

https://www.amazon.com/Laird-Takes-Bride-Penhallow-Dynasty/dp/0062451812/

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-laird-takes-a-bride-lisa-berne/1125284530

 

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Valerie Ullmer: Unexpected #BookHugs #Unexpected

 

On Sale for .99¢ – September 15th – September 30th

 

Unexpected (A Unexpected Novel Book One)

Valerie Ullmer

 

Genre:  Contemporary M/M Romance

Blurb

A chance meeting will change their lives forever… From the moment he entered the dark taproom, Caleb Hunt found himself drawn to the handsome man who sat alone at the end of the bar, away from the crowd. His interest in the dark-haired, muscled adonis took him by surprise, not remembering when he’d felt such hunger from a simple glimpse. Unable to stay away, he quickly found an open seat next to him and slid into it. When Ronan turned his ice-blue eyes to Caleb and introduced himself, his warm hand sent shivers of desire through his body and he was enthralled. Ronan Scott’s boring Friday night had taken a turn for the better when Caleb took the seat next to him. Over the next few hours, he found Caleb easy to talk to and at the same time, he found that he couldn’t tear his gaze away from the beautiful man. Caleb captured his attention in a way that no other had for as long as he could remember. Taking a chance, he leaned forward and captured Caleb’s lips with his. And with the simple kiss, Ronan understood that Caleb would become an essential part of his life.   As Ronan and Caleb explore their new relationship and integrate their lives together, they realize that not everything will be so seamless…

 

Buy Links:

Amazon

Amazon UK

Amazon AU

 

 

Excerpt:

That’s when he spotted him and everything stopped.

His breathing hitched in his chest and his heart thudded once, hard, and even the music seemed to fade as his gaze landed on a dark-haired man who sat by himself at the bar.  As Caleb’s eyes slid down the man’s body of their own accord, he noted the fitted black tee that emphasized the muscles of his arms, back, and shoulders, before his gaze dropped lower to his legs encased in denim.

When he lifted a beer to his mouth and swallowed, Caleb felt his own throat tighten.  A shiver of desire passed over him.  Never had he felt this way about a man or woman in his life.

Before he could analyze his actions or talk himself out of his stupid plan, he walked toward the man.  Part of him wanted to see if the man was as stunning as he believed from across the bar or if he’d been alone for so long that his mind had conjured the perfect man.

Before Caleb could reach the stool next to him, a beautiful blonde glided up to him, running her hand down his chest.  Her smile flirty and sensual.  Although Caleb had never been propositioned in any way close to resembling what he witnessed, he knew that she offered the man a brazen invitation to get to know her better.

Disappointment flooded Caleb’s chest.

In the next moment, however, she frowned and backed away from him as quickly as she arrived, leaving an empty chair.

Not questioning his good luck, Caleb hurried over and shed his coat, dropping it over the back.  He flagged down the bartender and indicated the beer he wanted.

He sensed the man’s eyes on him, but for the moment, he wasn’t brave enough to turn and catch his gaze.  Not when his breath had stuck in his throat, and he didn’t know if he could speak without sounding choked.

As soon as the bartender handed him his mug, the man turned his body toward him and leaned over to speak, close to his ear.

“Are you here alone?”

Caleb had to bite the inside of his lip in order not to moan out loud at the sexy, deep voice.  Remembering the question, he shook his head and pointed toward Dylan and Garrett across the room.  Dylan, of course, had a woman on his lap and was tracing a finger down her neck, before he leaned toward her and his mouth followed the same trail.

Garrett was looking down at his phone.  The shy woman he’d been talking to had disappeared, much to Caleb’s disappointment, and another was trying, unsuccessfully, to get his attention.  She looked drunk and very loud by the way he flinched every time she spoke.

“Dylan, the one on the right with a woman on his lap, is the biggest flirt in the world.  He’s never serious about any woman he takes home.  Garrett is his best friend, the complete opposite of Dylan, but he’s loyal.”

The man laughed and Caleb couldn’t help the lift of his lips at the sound.  It was deep, rich, and addictive.  But when the man turned his ice-blue eyes on him, something unidentifiable swelled in his chest.  He could sense that he should speak, to keep this gorgeous man talking for as long as possible.  “Are you here alone?”

Smart, Caleb.  Just parrot the same question back.

The man smiled before he nodded over to his group of friends.  Some were flirting, but others were enjoying the company of their friends on a Friday night.

“The ginger is Hawk; he’s a divorce lawyer who is handling Ryan’s divorce.  That’s why they’re hunched over their beers.  Ryan’s wife apparently hadn’t been faithful during their entire four-year marriage, and he found out when he came home early from a business trip.  Jack is the one who is flirting with the group of women; he’s like Dylan in that way, never serious.  He’s a CEO of a tech company and he could have any woman with his looks and the power he exudes, but he’s never been in a serious relationship.  Sam is my second-in-command, the one who looks faintly sick, because Adam is a forensic scientist who loves talking about his work.”

Caleb found himself smiling at the group of friends.  When he glanced at the man, who had turned back to Caleb after pointing out his friends, he snagged Caleb’s gaze.  “So, do you have a girlfriend at home?”

“No.  I can’t remember the last time I had a date, much less a successful one.  You?”

Caleb breathed a sigh of relief when he shook his head.

“I’m Ronan Scott.”  He held his hand out.

Even the man’s name is sexy.

He had to clear his throat before he reached out and grasped Ronan’s large, warm hand in his.  “Caleb Hunt.”

Something inside Caleb warmed in increments until fireworks exploded behind his skin, all from a simple touch.

 

About Valerie

Valerie writes paranormal and contemporary romances with strong alpha males and brilliant, beautiful heroines. She lives in Denver, Colorado with her wonderfully supportive husband and their funny and wise black lab. She’s addicted to coffee, crime shows, and reading and writing character driven romances.

 

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I believe that Love is Love, no matter what race, religion, color, or gender.  Love is Love.