Elodie Parkes: Millie Reinvented & The Horoscope Writer

Welcome Elodie! Tell us a little about why you
write erotic romance.

I started writing when I was seventeen. I
never did anything like submitting to publishers etc. until I was about twenty-five
and then queried to no avail.

I started writing again seriously a couple of
years ago because I had so many stories in my head.

I have published three erotic romance books
to date and I am working on another book right now.

They are available on Amazon kindle. I love
eBooks myself, and it’s rare now for me to buy a paperback or hardback.

I read heaps myself from across all types of


For my own writing people and emotions
inspires me. The complexity of life spurs me to write.

I find the world harsh. There’s not enough
love in it. Lots of people never find love. I write love stories with happy
endings to spread a little lightness around.

For instance my book ‘Millie
inspired through my day job.

I was talking to a young woman who was in the
antiques shop where I work and she was buying a little sculpture of two lovers
kissing. She said she had to have it because it was so nice to look at, as her
husband didn’t even kiss her anymore. I couldn’t say anything I just wrapped
the item, and stored the thought until the story burst out onto my laptop.

My books fall into the category of erotic
romance because I do write the sex scenes graphically and that’s because I want
the love the characters feel to show up properly in my stories.

I think too that readers have become used to reading more. They don’t
want the description of the romance to stop at the bedroom door.

My latest release ‘The Horoscope Writer’ was inspired by signs along a country road
when I was out driving one day in another county.

The main characters just started to flow into
my head and by the time I had driven home, which was a three hour journey
through the countryside, I had the book and characters completely ready.

Dominic Reed the horoscope writer is
desperate for love. He doesn’t know he has never had the kind of love he
suddenly finds with Cassie the female lead character. It ignites a sexual
passion in him he didn’t know he could feel.

My books do contain graphic sex in the love scenes but they are love
scenes, romantic and the characters are driven by love.

‘The Horoscope

is about a man, Dominic, who is a writer and has lots of different writing jobs
for magazines amongst which is that of horoscope writing. He is a lonely soul,
living in the country on a funny country lane where a few artisan’s workshops
are. Fortunately he has a friend there too, Jeremy, who has a workshop, design
studio there on the lane.

Dominic is lonely. His last relationship
broke up a couple of years prior to the opening of the story and he really
wants love.

There is a workshop to let on the lane and
Cassie comes along to rent it.

Dominic is instantly attracted to her when he
sees her in Jeremy’s office and she finds Dominic irresistible.

There is a mild paranormal streak running
through what is an erotic romance because Dominic has been influenced by his
great uncle who was also a horoscope writer.

This is a love story, erotic and enticing.

EXCERPT 18+ From The Horoscope Writer


“Can I get you anything Cassie? Coffee?”

She smiled at him thinking he had perhaps
changed his mind about going to bed together.

“Okay coffee is good” she answered.

Dominic washed his hands and made coffee.
Cassie watched him.

“If you’ve changed your mind Dominic it’s
okay”, she told him. It was what Dominic needed.

He went to her and held her head to kiss her.
The kiss was like nectar to Cassie and she began to put her hand up inside his
sweater to reach his skin. Dominic held her head with one hand kissing her
almost desperately as he used the other hand to unzip her jeans and push them
down her thighs. Cassie unzipped his jeans. Dominic felt almost lightheaded, he
couldn’t stop kissing her, and he put his hand down inside her underwear to
press his palm against her lower stomach.

Cassie gasped and searched for a way to lower
his jeans and feel his hard bottom. She felt his fingers reach her entrance and
she parted her legs a little so that he could push them into her.

Dominic’s voice was a whisper.

“Cassie let’s go to bed. I want to feel you
naked against me. I need you”.

She nodded slightly as his face was still
against hers. She moaned involuntarily as he took his fingers from her.

Dominic took her jacket, and put it over the
back of a kitchen chair.

Cassie pulled her jeans up leaving them

Dominic held her hand to lead her up to his
bedroom. The staircase was surprisingly wide, and they could walk up there side
by side. Dominic’s room was at the end of the landing, and he pushed the door
open with the side of his body as he turned to hold Cassie again and kiss her.

Somehow, though it wasn’t clear how to either
of them when they thought about it later, they undressed, and lay clasped
against each other on the bed breathing into each other’s mouths when the
sensation of being skin to skin overwhelmed them for a few moments.

Dominic traced his fingers down her stomach
reaching her entrance to find she was wet for him. His lips found hers and their
tongues touched gently as his fingers began to work magic on Cassie. She moved
against his palm and made little sounds into his kiss as she reached for him.
He thrust into her hands and they both groaned with need.

“Cassie wait I’ll find a condom”, he said, as
she began to whisper her need to him.

“Dominic I need you inside me now”, she
whispered over, and over as she kissed him.

Her hands felt cool on him and he was still
thrusting his hips as he moved his fingers in her. Cassie was close to coming
and she kissed Dominic shaking a little against his lips.

“Dominic I’m going to—”. He knew, and he
decided to give her that first.

He kissed her tenderly and moved his thumb
over her bud, his fingers deep inside her. “Cassie I know, let go, do it”, he
whispered, and left his lips soft against her mouth as she moaned and thrust on
his fingers coming. It seemed to last a long time and Dominic liked that. He
looked at her with love as she finally opened her eyes and smiled a little at

He wanted to be inside her and he reached
over her to the drawer in the bedside table to find a condom. He couldn’t find
one, and because he was kissing Cassie as she stroked his erection, he stopped
kissing her to look into the drawer. Cassie took the opportunity to move down his
body and take him into her mouth. She felt his intake of breath as she did it
and held his hips still before moving a hand to hold him low on his shaft and
suck him.

Dominic let the feeling of complete pleasure
soothe his worry about not finding a condom. He held Cassie’s head gently with
his hands in her hair. As he looked down at her, Cassie shifted her body and
moved her leg over his so that he could feel her entrance wet against the top
of his shin. Her hair fell over his lower stomach. She was doing amazing things
with her tongue and his gaze fell on the lovely curve of her bottom and length
of her satiny thighs. Dominic felt his orgasm rise up from his thighs as
Cassie’s hair feathered across them. The sensation rippled up him all the way
to his lips and he groaned. Cassie kept him in her mouth until she knew he had
completely finished. She had never known quite what to do with the mouthful of
seed and this seemed like such a lot. Without thinking too much about it she
swallowed and then kissed up his stomach and chest until she nuzzled against
his throat.

Dominic could feel her moving gently against
his thigh and sighed at the pleasure it gave him to feel her damp entrance on
his skin.

“Cassie”, he whispered, as she sucked a
little at the base of his throat.

She waited.

“Cassie”, he whispered again, and he lifted
her gently up so that her head was level with his. He kissed her tenderly and
then kept her cuddled against him. They both closed their eyes and lay quietly
together until they slept for a short time.

Copyright Elodie Parkes 2012 

Elodie Parkes

Elodie lives in Canterbury, United Kingdom. It’s famous for the Cathedral, Chaucer, and there is a UNESCO world heritage site, which includes the ancient ruins of St. Augustine’s Abbey and St. Martin’s Church. There is also a ruined castle. It’s a pretty place too and the coast nearby is great.

She works in an antiques shop and writes. Elodie has two dogs that keep her fit with their need for walks. 

Elodie writes romance, contemporary and always erotic with a twist of mystery, paranormal, and suspense now and then. She likes to make the story unusual in some way, by a quirk in the tale.  

Find me online:









Find my books:





Danita Minnis: Falcon’s Angel Tour and G*I*V*E*A*W*A*Y Day 3 – Sugar Free Reading

The tour continues at Marilyn’s Sugar Free Reading Blog! Come see why I believe not all witches are bad. 

Oh, and Falcon and Angel are tussling again…they love that kind of stuff.

I’m having so much fun sharing my journey of discovery, inspiration and my hero and heroine, Falcon and Angel. And it’s great talking to you wonderful readers!

Tour Schedule

Wed. Sept. 12th-  The Cover and Everything in Between

Thur. Sept. 13th-  Romance Lives Forever

Fri. Sept. 14th-  Sugar Free Reading 

Have you entered the drawing for giveaways? Enter a comment and your email address for a chance to win a copy of Falcon’s Angel or a $5 Amazon gift card. Four lucky winners will be picked during the tour!

Danita Minnis on Romance Lives Forever – Day 2 Tour & G*i*v*e*a*w*a*y!

The tour continues as I visit Kayelle Allen’s beautiful blog Romance Lives Forever – come talk to me! I am doing giveaways at all tour stops!

Tour Schedule

Wed. Sept. 12th-  The Cover and Everything in Between

Thur. Sept. 13th-  Romance Lives Forever

Fri. Sept. 14th-  Sugar Free Reading 

Join me and I will take you on a journey of discovery to my inspiration, my hero Falcon and my heroine Angel. Enter a comment and your email address for a chance to win a copy of Falcon’s Angel or a $5 Amazon gift card. Visit all stops on the tour to increase your chances of winning and remember to leave an email address so I can contact four lucky winners!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Falcon’s Angel Tour and G*I*V*E*A*W*A*Y Sept. 12th & 13th!

I’m at The Cover and Everything in Between today. Enter a comment and leave your rail address for a chance to win either a copy of Falcon’s Angel or an Amazon gift card! Four lucky winners will be chosen between today and tomorrow!http://thecoverbybrittany.blogspot.com/2012/09/falcons-angel-by-danita-minnis-blog-tour.html?m=1

Danita Minnis: Falcon’s Angel G*i*v*e*a*w*a*y! Sept. 12th & 13th

I am so excited to be on the road with my paranormal romance debut Falcon’s Angel, hosted by the Mistresses of Passion. Meeting great readers like you just sweetens the pot – I am doing giveaways at both tour stops!

Tour Schedule

Wed. Sept. 12th-  The Cover and Everything in Between

Thur. Sept. 13th-  Romance Lives Forever

Join me and I will take you on a journey of discovery to my inspiration, my hero Falcon and my heroine Angel. Enter a comment and your email address for a chance to win a
copy of Falcon’s Angel or a $5 Amazon gift card. Visit both stops on the tour to
increase your chances of winning and remember to leave an email address so I
can contact four lucky winners!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Gemma K. Murray: Keeper of the Golden Dragon’s Heart

Character Interview

Anastasia has an interesting story to tell.

1.     What is your Anastasia like? Oh goodness, Anastasia is sassy, brazen, and bold. She’s the daughter of a puma shifter and a witch, so her life hasn’t been exactly easy. She has the wonderful ability of being all warm and feminine, but her backbone is made of pure steel.

2.     What does Anastasia do best? What is the perfect location for this action? Ana puts up with the Golden boys. They’ve been her pseudo-brothers since she was 12. I love the way she gives all of their teasing right back to them. 

3.     What drives Anastasia to do the things they do? Her love for the family who took her in when she was orphaned. She is so dedicated to showing them she is appreciative of that fact without being overly so.

4.     You are introduced to Anastasia. Is she happy to meet you? Heck, no!*grin* Ana and I didn’t see eye to eye from the start. She was bound and determined I had to tell her story, but as soon as I went off course from where she intended to lead me, she shut down. She may be a little happier to see me now, but I can’t make any promises.

5.     What is Anastasia’s favorite guilty pleasure? Sweets! Ana loves everything sweet. From her cinnamon rolls to pancakes to her chocolate (Book 2), Ana cannot get enough sugary things. Oops, she whispering to me, “Don’t forget about my man, Bowie. He’s kind of sweet, too.”

6.     How would Anastasia describe herself? She says she is pure pussycat until you cross her. She loves her family and would lay down her life if she needed to in order to keep them safe. She’s intelligent, but she’s worried her witch skills will kill somebody someday unless she learns her craft.

7.     What is Anastasia’s weakness? Her heart. Ana loves so easily, but it takes her a long time to trust people.

8.    Where does Anastasia go to regroup/unwind? Either the woods around Cedar River or the lake. She can clear her mind and let loose.

9.    What does Anastasia live for? Her family and the community of Cedar River

10.  What will Anastasia kill for? The same.


A Few Questions for Anastasia

1.      If you could have one super power in your existence, what would it be? I’m a puma shifter with witch powers. I think I’m pretty awesome as is. 

2.      A biography has been written about you. What do you think the title would be in six words or less? Keeper of the Golden Dragon’s Heart.

3.  If money were not an object, where would you most like to live? I would live exactly where I am, Cedar River, Michigan, Upper Peninsula, USA.

4.      I can never leave Bowie because he is the love of my life.

5.      The next time I want to drive Bowie crazy, I will steal his ’69 Camaro and lead him out onto an old country road so I can seduce him.

6.  Why do I always insist on teasing Bowie? (Because it is so much fun.)

7.      My favorite flavor is real maple syrup because it reminds me of Mama’s breakfasts.

8.      love being a puma because I have the ability to see things normal humans may miss.

9.      How much teasing can you take? Why? I can take a lot. I grew up with Bowie and his three brothers. They can drive a girl crazy, trust me, but I learned early on to hand it right back to them.

10.  Name one thing you must do before you die, and why. Make sure that Cedar River and the surrounding world is safe for my children and grandchildren. Why? Don’t you want the same for your family? There areso many close-minded people who just can’t stand it if someone is different. Cedar River and its residents aren’t perfect, but they loved me and kept me safe. Every child should know that sort of life.

Keeper of the Golden Dragon’s Heart blurb:

The Upper Peninsula of Michigan seems like it is another country. The rawness and beauty of the land draws people from every walk of life. What most people don’t realize is there is a little town nestled on the banks of Lake Superior that an entire group of supernatural beings call home. Shifters of every shape and size live there. They raise their families there. Tourists come from near and far to visit the quaint town of Cedar River, Michigan. The tourists never realize they are walking among some of the most unusual beings on earth.

Bowie Golden is a dragon shifter who is in charge of Cedar River’s safety. Until now, the biggest threat to anyone’s safety was Anastasia Plum, a witch/puma-shifter. She has been the town hellraiser since she was a teenager. Now someone has discovered the secret the residents of Cedar River keep for one another. These radicals are determined to eradicate the entire town. It’s up to Bowie to keep them all safe.

Ana has always idolized Bowie. She may have stirred up trouble from time to time, but Bowie or one of his brothers would always get her out of the trouble she was in. One day, it happened. The unthinkable, the unimaginable occurred. Anastasia Plum fell for the “golden” boy. What an unlikely duo- the sheriff and the hellraiser!

Just as these two discover their passion for one another, a group of people is determined to keep them apart. It’s up to Ana to prove that she is the only Keeper of the Golden Dragon’s Heart.


Gemma’s Bio:

I was born and raised in a small town in lower Michigan. A farmer’s daughter, my greatest ambitions were to become a large animal vet and to read every book ever written. The veterinarian dream fell by the wayside, but I’m still working on reading every book I can get my hot little hands on.

But I’m a dreamer…I love to sit and look out the windows, daydreaming about what could be. I love getting tangled in my dreams when I fall asleep at night. That is how Keeper of the Golden Dragon’s Heart came to be. It started with a dream and spun into something beautiful.


Here are the links where people can find me:





And the Winner is…

Donna Sing!

Congratulations, Donna Sing, the winner of my site’s Romance
the Hop prize.
Donna won a copy of my debut paranormal romance Falcon’s Angel.

Thank you to all the wonderful commenters for visiting my site, formally known
as Romance The Book Blog. I changed the name to plain, old Danita Minnis.
It was great to hear from each and every one of you – I love these hops!
Hope to see you again in October for the next one!

Romancing The H*O*P Blog H*O*P!

is your favorite thing about Romance? Join the hop and we authors will share our
romantic tips and favorite romance reads! Starting on Friday, August 31st and ending on Monday, September 3rd, over 100 Authors and Bloggers will share their favorite
things about romance, reading romance, and dating.

while we do that, we are EACH doing a giveaway. That’s right – there will be
over 100 giveaways on each blog!

that’s not all….

have THREE grand prizes. You as a reader can go to EACH blog and
comment with your email address and be entered to win. You can enter over 100
times! Check out 
the prizes.

1st Grand Prize:
A Kindle Fire or Nook Tablet

2nd Grand Prize:
A $130 Amazon or B&N Gift Card

3rd Grand Prize:
The following Swag Pack!

ALL of that! Whoot! Be sure to come back here on Friday and over the weekend to
enjoy some stories and facts about our favorite Romance events and reads and
enter to win!

Browse through my favorite romance novels for a chance to win a copy of my paranormal romance debut Falcon’s Angel.

Chivalry is NOT dead, Ladies…

a romance author, I’ve read my share of flowing gowns in sprawling meadows and scenes
full of tall, dark and handsome. And I never get tired of them. I am in love with
love! My favorite books romance me, again and again. To this day, I cannot put
these books down once I start reading. Browse through this collection of
stories for my favorite things about romance and fall in love again.


by Daphne du Maurier
– Mr. and Mrs. de Winter, an innocent bride and a man with
a past. This haunting romantic tragedy
plays out on a desolate Cornish coast and has everything I need in a meal, gothic
mystery, unconditional love and so much more.


in Shining Armor by Jude Deveraux
– When heartbroken Dougless Montgomery met
her sixteenth century knight in an old English church it took my breath away. He
rescues the modern girl in this moving tale of the power of love.

by Jude Deveraux
– yes, two Deveraux books back to back, just love her work! If
you like reincarnation and the promise of love-everlasting read this book of soul mates. And guess what? They find
each other and recognize each other. Enjoy travelling the eras with Hayden
Lane and her man. Just beautiful to behold.


in Amber by Diana Gabaldon
– Time-travel has always fascinated me as much as
lush lands and romantic eras. You will find all of that in this story. Claire
travels back in time to eighteenth century France, where she and her husband
Jamie plot against Bonnie Prince Charlie. Another haunting romance and if you
haven’t read this one, suffice it to say you can taste the longing in their lives across the centuries.

Flame and the Flower by Kathleen Woodiwiss
– From Georgian England to a
plantation in the Carolinas, Heather and her stern Captain Brandon fight. She
is the one who sought refuge in the
arms of a dangerous man, now she must deal with his unrestrained passion. A
must read, this book tore down sexual barriers in historical novels.

Did you spy my favorite
things about romance? 

Tell me what your favorite things are about romance for a chance to win Falcon’s Angel. Remember to leave your email address for the contest.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Falcon’s Angel Tour: September 10th – 14th  
Host: Mistresses of Passion
Read an excerpt HERE.
Falcon's Angel Tour Sept 10th - 14th

Wicked Wednesdays: D.X. Luc and Touch of the Gods

Wicked Wednesdays

D.X. Luc has a tasty morsel to share…a sexy snippet from Touch of the Gods


along the heavy vein, roped around my cock, I placed one knee on the bed,
curled my arm around her waist and lifted her until our chests were pressed
together. I grabbed onto her lips, sucking on them until they were plump and
red, before coaxing her to bend her knees until she knelt before me. 

my mind, I repositioned her pillows to sit up behind her back, and lowered her
until she sat on her calves. I pushed her wider, exposing her pussy to my
greedy view, glistening with her sticky dew. I dipped into her wet hole,
twisting it from side to side, until she gasped while she came an instant
later. As Vanessa’s walls sucked on my thick digit, I thrilled at the idea of
how it would feel once I was buried in her sweet, tight fortress of pleasure.
“I hope you’re ready for me, beautiful. I have waited so long for you.”

her lips, Vanessa swallowed, and nodded, shifting so she could move her legs.

stopped her. “No, you are to stay just like this. I promise to keep you from
feeling any discomfort.”

never done it like this before, but I trust you.”

words touched my heart, making it swell in my chest in a way I had never
experienced before. While the leftover tremor from her orgasm of before shook
her body, I added a second finger, stretching her hole, while pressing up
against her g-spot. Tapping in time with her pulse, my thumb found its place
onto her clit, circling around it alternatively with the thrusting movements
inside her wetness. Riding on her outcries, my sensual manipulations drove on
until I had her teetering on the edge of bliss, and with a final push, she fell
over and shattered once more, her juices flowing in copious waves of natural

still gasping from the power of her orgasm, squeaked in the most adorable
manner when I slid the tip of my cock into her hungry pussy. Shuddering at how
amazing she felt, clutching at me, her own body shivered in kind, as the ball
of my piercing glided along the ridged walls of her vagina. Inch by inch, I crammed
myself deeper, until I could go no more, her cervix barring me from going
further. I wanted so badly to fit all of myself inside, to be connected to her,
but that would have meant hurting her, something I was unwilling to do.

on my elbows with my knees bent into the mattress, my form looked as though I
was going to be performing push ups. In this position, one that was shown to me
centuries ago by a Sheik, who strangely now has a popular sex book, I would be
performing a maneuver that would give her the purest ecstasy ever known to a
woman. “You ready?” Please don’t laugh at me.

in the feel of me, Vanessa groaned out her reply and lifting my hips up, I
dragged back, agonizingly slow, then paused to look her in the eyes. The green
around her pupil had spread into the grayish brown of her irises, and they
shined, glazed with the hormones saturating her blood. I dipped to grab her
lips, kissing her but remaining frozen, teasing her silky cavern with just the
fullness of the head of my dick, until she mewed into my mouth, trying to move
herself to pull me back in. 

she realized the position I had her in, prohibited her from taking control,
Vanessa growled.

nipped at her lips, chin and nose. I chuckled and thrust downward, the force
pushing her up against the pillows.

wrenching of my name as a scream came from her lips. 


When love and war make a little wager, what could possibly go wrong?

I am Hephaestus. God of inventions, blacksmiths, and volcanoes. Sounds like I’m awesome right? Well, I’m not. In fact, I’m the loser of Olympus and a new bachelor to boot. Living the single life is great until a decade passed. Honestly if my divorce from the Goddess of Love wasn’t bad enough, I am still being rejected by the other women of my home.

Because of an incessant need to make me a pawn in his game, my brother, Ares convinces Eros to make a little bet. A wager that puts my lack of love life to the test. Sent to Earth, I’m skeptical, when suddenly I lose myself in the sensual scent and beauty of the full bodied Vanessa. She is my everything, my perfection.

Sadly, from a single caress upon her silky flesh, I sent our lives into a downward spiral of hell. To save her, I must get beyond my demons of the past. And to save me, she will have to decide if I’m worth giving up everything for.

kindle: http://www.amazon.com/The-Wager-TOUCH-GODS-ebook/dp/B0080S7PS4/ref=tmm_kin_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1344969601&sr=1-1

paperback: http://www.amazon.com/Touch-Gods-The-Wager-Volume/dp/147762242X/ref=la_B006KYWFGW_1_1_title_0_main?ie=UTF8&qid=1344969601&sr=1-1

Author D. X. Luc
~Sinfully Unrestrained~

Visit my blog: http://welcome-to-the-island-of-dxluc.blogspot.com/

Guest Author Shira Anthony: The Melody Thief

Cary Redding is a walking contradiction. On the
surface he’s a renowned cellist, sought after by conductors the world over.
Underneath, he’s a troubled man flirting with addictions to alcohol and
anonymous sex. The reason for the discord? Cary knows he’s a liar, a cheat.
He’s the melody thief. 

Cary manages his double life just fine until he gets mugged on a
deserted Milan street. Things look grim until handsome lawyer Antonio Bianchi
steps in and saves his life. When Antonio offers something foreign to Cary—romance—Cary
doesn’t know what to do. But then things get even more complicated. For one
thing, Antonio has a six-year-old son. For another, Cary has to confess about
his alter ego and hope Antonio forgives him. 

Just when Cary thinks he’s figured it all out, past and present collide and he is forced to choose between the family he wanted as a boy and the one he has come to love as a man.

Character Interview: Cary Redding has an interesting story to tell.

Cary Redding is one of the main characters in my new
Dreamspinner Press release, “The Melody Thief.”
American, twenty-nine years old, he’s a classical cellist who lives in
Milan and performs all over the world.
Cary is the “melody thief.”

1. What is Cary like?  Cary Redding is a man leading
a double life.
  On the outside, he’s a
renowned classical cellist, sought out by conductors the world over.
  On the inside, he’s addicted to anonymous sex
and flirts with alcohol addiction.
be the last one to admit it, but he’s lost, lonely, and harboring the ghosts of
a difficult childhood.
  That’s why he’s
the “melody thief.”

2. What does Cary do best?  What
is the perfect location for this action? 
Cary is an amazing natural
  He literally grew up with his
cello and his music—it’s the only thing positive in his life.
  He was one of the few child prodigies who has
been found success as an adult.
most at home on the stage, playing his cello.
It’s a place where he finds peace and comfort.

3. What drives Cary to do the
things he does?  
Cary is an addictive
  The same way he throws
himself into his music to forget, he also relies upon back-alley encounters,
cigarettes and booze to help dull the pain of his childhood.
  Underneath it all, though, Cary is a good
  He knows there’s more to life than
what he’s been living, but he doesn’t know how to find it.
  It takes the love of a good man for him to
realize that he deserves more than what he has, and that he’s worthy of being

4. You are introduced to Cary. Is
he happy to meet you?  
Cary wouldn’t be particularly
happy to meet me, because I’d be just another of his fans.
  Not that he minds that there are people who
love his music, but he doesn’t feel as though he deserves the kind of adulation
he receives from his public.
  He’d shake
my hand, look me in the eye, and tell me he’s happy to meet me.
  But it’s all an act:  he knows it’s what people expect from him, so
he is polite.

5. What is Cary’s favorite
guilty pleasure?  
Aside from the sex and booze,
Cary adores listening to any music.
Including 80s pop and cheesy 1950s love songs.  He’d never admit it, though, if you called
him on it!

6. How would Cary describe himself?  Cary would say he’s got
boy-next-door good looks—nothing all that exciting.
  In fact, that’s generally how he’d describe
  average.  Average intelligence, average looks, average
  But he’s none of those
  He just can’t see himself as
others see him.

7. What is Cary’s weakness? Cary would never admit it,
but he’s very sensitive to criticism.
grew up with a domineering stage mother and he never felt as though he was good
  He worries that people won’t
like him and that they’ll see through him as the pretender he really is.
  He wants to please people, even if it means
that he sacrifices something that’s important to him.

8. Where does Cary go to regroup/unwind? Cary spends his down-time in
  And not the nice ones:  the seedy, hole in the wall places that
recede into obscurity when the sun comes up.
He goes to drink and to find sex (his substitute for real companionship).

9. What does Cary live for? The only thing Cary lives for
is his music.
  It’s the only positive
thing in his life, and he struggles to cling to it even when the rest of his
world is crashing down around him.

10. What will Cary kill for? At the beginning of “The
Melody Thief?”
  Probably nothing.  Other than his brother, perhaps, who lives a
world away in the United States, there’s no one and nothing that Cary would
care enough about that he’d risk everything for.
  But Cary does eventually find two people who
he would do anything for:
Bianchi and his five year old son, Massimo.


A Few Questions for Cary

1. If you could have one super
power in your existence, what would it be? 
Super hearing.  Definitely. 
So you can listen in to what people are saying about you behind your
back. Or maybe the conductor singing under his breath, or the percussionist
tuning the tympani during a performance.
Or the bassoon.  You can never
hear them with all the noise the trumpets make.

2. A biography has been written
about you. What do you think the title would be in six words or less? 
“And this Guy’s Interesting

3. If money were not an object,
where would you most like to live? 
On one of those Greek
islands, right on the water.
there’s nothing like the color of the Mediterranean.
  You know, that turquoise blue that looks like
a painting?

4. I can never practice long
because there’s always something new I can learn about a piece of

5. The next time I perform
I will do better.  I’m never happy
with the last performance, I want to play better the next time.  I want to do the music justice


Tulsa, Oklahoma  

HE SCREWED up his face,
trying to ignore the bright lights at the edge of the stage, which burned his
eyes and left multicolored imprints on his retinas. Cary Redding was barely
fifteen years old, but he sat straight-backed, schooling his expression to reveal
only calm resolve. Unlike some of the well-known performers he had watched on
video, he did not move his body in time to the music, nor did he bend and sway.
The cello became a physical extension of his body, and he had no need to move
anything more than his fingers on the fingerboard and his bow over the strings.

When he played, he was
transported to a place where it didn’t matter that his face had begun to break
out or that he seemed to grow out of his shoes every other month. When he
played, he forgot his fear that he was different—that he was far
more interested in Jerry Gabriel than in Jerry’s sister Martha. When he played,
he felt the kind of warmth he had horsing around with his brother in the
backyard, chasing after a football.

For the past three years,
he had studied the Elgar Cello Concerto, a soulful, intensely passionate
composition, and one he adored. His cello teacher had explained that it had
been composed at the end of World War I, and the music reflected the composer’s
grief and disillusionment. At the time, Cary hadn’t been really sure what that
meant, but he felt the music deep within his soul, in a place he hid from
everyone. In that music, he could express what he could not express any other
way, and somehow nobody ever seemed to understand that although the music was
Elgar’s, the sadness and the melancholy were his own.

At times he was terrified
the audience would discover his secret: that he was unworthy of the music. But
then his fingers would follow their well-worn path across the fingerboard, and
his bow would move of its own accord. The music would rise and fall and engulf
him entirely, and the audience would be on their feet to acknowledge the
gangly, awkward teenager who had just moved them to tears.

Tonight was no exception.
The Tulsa Performing Arts Center was packed with pillars of the community come
to hear the young soloist the Chicago Sun-Times had proclaimed
“one of the brightest new talents in classical music.” Cries of “bravo”
punctuated the applause, and a shy little girl in a white dress with white
tights and white shoes climbed the steps to the stage with her mother’s
encouragement and handed him a single red rose.

He stood with his cello at
his side and bowed as he had been taught not long after he learned to walk. The
accompanist bowed as well, smiling at him with the same awed expression he had
seen from pianists and conductors alike.

In that moment, he felt
like a thief. A liar. The worst kind of cheat.

The Melody Thief

A Blue Notes Novel, Book 2

Dreamspinner Press

Contemporary M/M

Buy at http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=3170&osCsid=q15uv00q2hh0tovqaqqpkarfs0

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