I’ve done some things I’m ashamed of. Been the subject of gossip they didn’t even bother trying to keep from my ears. But I’m here, thousands of miles away trying to atone for my sins. Funny thing is, some sins are so ingrained it’s impossible to scrub them from your DNA.
Chelsea’s hell bent on reigning in her free spirit and becoming the daughter her mama could be proud of. Lord knows she owes her that much. But when a stranger crosses her path, her wild heart flares to life. She figures a little bit of fun never hurt none. She isn’t prepared for the lesson fate serves with a slice of pie, and some sweet tea on the side.
Greyson is done with being neck deep in cow dung. He’s ready to hang up his cowboy hat and replace it with a toque blanche. Following his passion all the way to Boston, he gets the shock of his life when the smokin’ hot blonde from Alabama turns up in his uncle’s restaurant.
But her plans and his future are set for different destinations. And distance isn’t the only thing trying to tear them apart.
The kitchen is about to go volcanic as he fights to chase his dream, and hold on to his dream girl.
Chelsea will have to make a choice between her heart, or her home.
Which one will it be?
*Recommended for readers 18+ due to mature content. *
Like the rest of town, Lucy’s Diner was stuck in a time warp. They had the jukebox to prove it, complete with vinyl records. It had a nice homey feel to it, though—another thing she’d miss while she was gone.
The bell on the door jingled as it slapped shut behind her. An aromatic cocktail of grease and coffee hung on the air, assailing her senses, and triggering her hunger. Chelsea turned and waved to Angel as she drove off shaking her head. Her friend thought she was crazy, meeting a strange man who wasn’t hanging around for long. She’d learned to be more selective and trust her instincts when it came to men, despite her impulsive tendencies. Unwilling to repeat the fatal mistake from her past.
Maybe she was crazy, but there was something about him… She wasn’t completely irresponsible. The diner was her turf and it was safe. There’d be people here that would look out for her.
She had this under control.
Chelsea’s blue gaze roamed the cracked red vinyl booths, until they landed on the deliciousness that was Greyson Stranger. She didn’t know his last name, so Stranger it was, and that’s how she wanted it to stay. This was just a short detour to let off some steam before she had to get back to the serious business of paying for her sins.
Her smile stretched wide as she watched him take her in, the heat in his eyes blazing. His long, dark hair hung over one eye, brushing the tops of his wide shoulders. He leaned back in the chair and rested his arms across the table in front of him, with a hint of a smile in greeting.
Slowly walking towards him, she kept eye contact, half because she wanted to make an entrance, and half because she couldn’t look away.
“Is this seat taken?”
Greyson waved his hand across the booth as if to say, “Be my guest.”
Chelsea slid into the seat and rested her chin in her hands, still staring at him.
“Hi.” He smirked.
“Yeah. I’ve ordered a piece of pie and sweet tea. I didn’t know if you were gonna show up, so I figured I’d… fill up my body…” He wiggled his fingers to put air quotes around his use of her phrase. “… before gettin’ back on the road.”
At the mention of his body, Chelsea’s eyes dropped to his straining T-shirt again. It was hard not to look. The man was gorgeous. “Well, sugar, if I invite a man somewhere you can always guarantee I’ll show up. A piece of pie and some sweet tea sounds mighty fine right about now.”
The waitress appeared in time with Chelsea’s declaration. “Hi sweetie, good to see you again. You having what he’s having?” The older lady stood with pencil and pad poised, and a ready smile.
“Okay, hun.” She bustled back behind the counter.
Chelsea turned back to her companion. “So, tell me about your first kiss?”
Greyson’s mouth dropped open and he huffed out a laugh. “Excuse me?”
“First kiss. Come on. Spill.”
“Mindy Lawson, second grade, on the swings. How about you?”
“Decker Turner, two years old, in the playpen.” She grinned. “What did you think you’d grow up to be when you were a kid?”
“Superman… How ‘bout you?”
“Lois Lane.” The corner of her mouth kicked up as she batted her lashes playfully.
A deep laugh rumbled out of him, sending tingles down her neck.
“Do I get to ask a question?” He raised a dark brow.
“Only if it’s not personal.”
“Your first kiss isn’t personal?”
“No.” She shrugged.
“So, I can’t ask what your last name is?”
“Or your number?”
“Nooo.” She shook her head, dramatically.
He sat up straight and scratched the stubble on his chin, one side of his mouth quirked. “Arrabbiata or Carbonara?”
“Ooh, good one. It depends on my mood. Arrabbiata, most of the time.”
“Spicy… Nice.” He leaned towards her, his eyes dipping to her lips for a second, before seeking her gaze again.
She put her hands on the table, mirroring him as she leaned forward. “Red or white wine?”
“Whatever goes with the dish.”
“I like an adventurous man.” The smile broke out on her face again.
“I’m on the biggest adventure of my life.”
“Where ya headed?”
“Isn’t that a personal question?” He raised a brow and moved his hand closer so their fingers touched.
“Touché. Yes, it is.”
The clink of plates on the table broke the intensity between them.
Chelsea took in a desperate breath as they both leaned back. “Thanks, Doreen, you’re a darlin’.”
“You’re welcome, sweetie. Enjoy!”
They each took a forkful of pie, and chewed as their eyes roamed over each other. The taste on her tongue was amazing. The country song playing on the jukebox barely registered over the sound of Grey’s lips smacking together as he enjoyed his food. He made a low hum in his throat, and she let out a whimper. It was the most intense foreplay she’d ever experienced.
She couldn’t help feeling sad at the thought that this couldn’t go anywhere. It should have been a warning signal, when fleeting hook-ups were the only relationships she dared to entertain. The type she could control. Maybe it hadn’t been wise, starting something with this man. It echoed of her past. Of a stupid decision that cost a life. She feared she was setting herself up for a painful experience, rather than the fun she’d hoped for.
Picking up her glass, she gulped down some cool, sweet tea, looking away from him for a beat.
“Feelin’ a bit heated, sugar?” The amusement was obvious in his voice.
The glass thunked on the table as she put it down too forcefully. “I am. You wanna get out of here?”
“What’s the hurry? Are you tired of me already?”
“Nope. It’s just the opposite. I’m afraid I’ve bitten off more than I can chew, but like the greedy girl I am, I’d like to gorge myself some more.”
She had lost her everlovin’ mind.
His jaw tightened and he paused, his eyes flashing to her mouth. She watched that jaw loosen as he continued to chew and swallow slowly. His gaze drifted back to hers, and he picked up his drink, draining it in one long chug before pushing the glass away.
“You’re a wild one… Tempting.”
He sat so still with his eyes boring into hers, his face an intense mask. His eyebrows had dropped. He looked almost angry… or maybe frustrated. It did nothing to dispel the heat that gathered in her core. If anything, the hint of fire in his eyes set her desire for him at furnace level. She’d never experienced an attraction like this before, putting her at a distinct disadvantage. She needed to be the one in control, and she felt anything but.
“I need to get back on the road. If I don’t get out of here now, I’m never going to leave,” he muttered, before he stood. Reaching into his back pocket, he pulled out his wallet, and threw some green onto the table. His warm palm caressed her cheek, as his thumb drifted across her bottom lip. The touch set off all sorts of tingles, further awakening parts that had no business being excited in a 1950s diner.
Chelsea’s heart thundered in her chest as he leaned down to place a soft kiss on her lips. The barely-there touch seared more than the hottest chili.
“The first kiss is always personal,” he whispered in her ear, before walking out of her life.
She sat for the longest time, staring at where he’d been sitting, trying to calm the hell down. Wondering what the fuck had just happened, and why she suddenly felt so bereft. Like her carefully planned future now had a gaping hole she had no idea how to fill.
Belly full of beer and nachos, Chelsea found herself sitting in a dim candlelit room with about fifteen others, listening to a psychic pull random information from thin air. She didn’t think there was any threat of actual communication with the dead, but some vibe in the room made her twitchy. Perhaps it was because she was sandwiched between Ryan and Grey, who both sat with arms crossed and one ankle on the opposing knee. It seemed Hannah was in charge of the itinerary for the night, and nobody liked her choice of activities.
Strangely, Dakota chose a seat beside Grey, quietly absorbing the show. Or maybe it wasn’t strange, and Chelsea was letting her green side take over. Not the Oz kind of green, either. It was more the mammoth proportions of the big guy who split his pants every time he got mad.
Hannah appeared oblivious, hanging on every word coming out of the psychic’s mouth. Lord bless that free-spirited woman. She embraced everything she did, wholeheartedly. Chelsea could learn a thing or two from her. She unfolded her arms, placing her hands between her knees, and sat up.
“May I approach you?” The psychic had Chelsea in her sights.
“Don’t be scared. I have a message from your loved one.”
“Pfft. Oh, I’m not scared, honey.” She rubbed her palms together, shuffling her butt back in her chair.
You’re such a liar.
“Your loved one with a B sound. A female. You were close, but not related.”
Chelsea’s muscles tensed, the twitchy feeling intensifying under her skin.
“She said to let go of the blame. It was her choice. You were not responsible.”
Her vocabulary vanished as her body locked tight. What could she say? That information couldn’t be randomly plucked from the air. Unless this psychic somehow knew her from Texas, there was no way she could’ve known Chelsea had been carrying the burden of blame for her wild ways… and the irreversible consequences. She squeezed her palms between her knees as her mind reeled. Was that really Beth?
“She said to tell you she’s okay.”
Well, I’m not.
“I have a message for you, too.”
Chelsea’s focus turned to Greyson as the psychic addressed him.
“This spirit is very clearly your grandfather. A forceful personality. He refused to wait his turn. He said he’s sorry for being so stubborn, and that you must follow your heart, wherever it may lead you.”
Grey tipped his chin up in a dismissive gesture, choosing not to speak. Angling himself towards her, he pulled one of her hands onto his thigh and clasped their palms together, unspoken questions suspended in his eyes.
Are you okay?
Who is Beth?
“I got you.” The words rumbled out in a deep, calming whisper.
Oh, honey. You have me more than you know.
She fixed on their joined hands, her eyelids tapping out a frantic rhythm. He’d brushed aside his own revelation to take care of her, the security net still blanketing her. She half expected to see a cascade of rubble as another of her walls came crashing down. He’d offered her a safe place to forgive herself for all her failings. A chance at normal. She’d vehemently denied the small voice in her mind that said, ‘what if?’ What if she allowed herself to trust enough to find love? What if she found someone who would cherish her? Didn’t she deserve that? That’s all Beth had wanted.
As the psychic moved through the room, Chelsea struggled with herself to stay seated. She turned her thoughts back to Grey. The way he held her hand steady, as if he knew she needed an anchor because she was suddenly lighter than before. He gave their joined hands a shake to get her attention, and tilted his chin towards the door. She didn’t need to be told twice. She stood and followed him. Breaking free, she took a gulp of night air, letting his hand slip from hers.
He flexed his fingers. “You’ve got a good grip.”
“So I’ve been told.” She winced. She’d let her tongue loose again. Damn, it was hard holding back around him. “Sorry about that. Knee jerk reaction. I’m trying to be a better person and that means less inappropriate flirting.”
“It’s only inappropriate if it’s unwelcome.”
“Well, I just crushed your hand. I’m sure you weren’t thinking about my grip around anything else.”
“I haven’t stopped thinking about parts of you wrapped around parts of me ever since we met.”
Her lids dropped low as she took in the firm set of his jaw. His molten gaze warmed her up, making her body pliant and ready for his touch. Maybe she could let him in? For the time she had left, anyways. And finally give herself a taste of something she could hold deep inside for the rest of her days.
“That can be arranged.”
“Oh really? Forfeiting your bet so early in the game? Shame on you, Chelsea. I thought you were made of tougher stuff.”
“How do you—” Her eyes popped before narrowing. “Dane… Oh, he is going to get a wupping next time I see him.”
“He’s a good friend. You have a good group of people who love you.” He pushed some hair out of his face and glanced at the door they’d just exited. “And some questionable tag-alongs.”
“You don’t like Ryan, huh?”
“I wasn’t referring to Ryan. But, no. I don’t like him. He wants what I want.” Those eyes travelled over her features.
“He can’t have me. And, for the record, I don’t give a rat’s ass about the bet.”
“Good. I’m glad to hear it, because you and I are gonna happen.”
“Now?” She bounced on the balls of her feet.
He barked out a laugh, flashing his teeth. “No. I don’t sleep with witches.”
“Oh. That’s a shame, because I’m pretty sure witches sleep naked.”
His brow shot up. “Is that right?”
“It’s just a rumor I heard from someone in the know.”
“I’ll dream about that until the time comes.”
“When will it be time to come? Because I’m lookin’ forward to the coming part.”
The smile spread across his face in a slow seductive tide, as his lids grew heavy. “It’s going to be explosive.”
“When? When is it going to explode? I hope we have some towels on hand.”
Laughter burst from deep in his belly, the sound rivalling the revelry in the street. “Oh, you are a peach.” He reached out and pulled her into his frame.
Enveloped in his arms as he shook in amusement, she couldn’t contain her smile. He was all kinds of warm and hard, and big… and hard. Yeah, she might’ve burrowed in close enough to feel something against her stomach. A girl had to check these things. He had all the right gear to get the job done.
He also had so much more that she wasn’t prepared for. He had heart, and compassion. He’d known that she needed to get out of that room, and he’d made it happen without pressing her for a reason why. And then he’d made her laugh while getting her panties wet. He was a goddamn rock. A big, gorgeous, steady rock. Her arms crept around him as she turned her face into his chest and breathed him in. She listened to the beat in his chest, absorbed the rise and fall of air from his lungs, and felt her own match it.
She’d been so torn between belonging in two different places that she hadn’t imagined she could feel so content in a place like his arms.
Maybe home had nothing to do with geography.
But if you want to call someone home, you must both be in the same city.
And there was the problem.
Author Bio: Former nurse, reluctant romantic, and chocolate lover, J.M. Adele, is the author of paranormal and contemporary romance, and romantic suspense. After years of indulging in her addiction to reading, her own characters started to tell their stories. They were relentless, forcing her to put pen to paper and release them into the world. She also owns and runs The Flare Up book blog where she shares her reading obsession.
On most days you can find her running between the desk, and wrangling her three boisterous boys while carrying a book in one hand. When everyone else drifts off to dreamland she escapes into the worlds conjured by the characters in her head.
For fans of The Black Dagger Brotherhood, A Shade of a Vampire, and Rent-A-Dragon. It contains hot vampires, page-turning action, and steamy romance.
If sex had a smell, Armando Moreno had bottled it.
Brooklyn Ashbaugh doesn’t think much of the spring break trip her college roommates drag her on until she meets Armando Moreno. With his sexy Latin accent, muscular body, and soulful eyes, he should be interested in runway models, not a twenty-one-year-old college student in discount jeans. Still, when he invites her up to his place, her body takes over, shutting out her better judgment. She never has one night stands. She knows better. Yet, something about this amazingly attractive man makes her lose her head.
And her clothes.
Later when she awakes, she finds herself discarded and bitten, infected with a disease that makes her crave blood and violence. Now, only the man responsible for her infection can unlock the mystery surrounding it. But can she control her primal urges long enough to stop the spread of infection before it destroys her town and her life?
Brooklyn’s hands are shaking by the time she jerks the scooter to a stop in the driveway and jumps off the Vespa. If she can just get inside the house before the attack hits, everything will be fine.
She whips her helmet from her head as she hurries toward the house, letting it clunk into the gravel. She loves that goddamned helmet, a 1950 vintage Hermes Pudding Bucket motorcycle helmet her father gave her four years ago on her high school graduation. And now it’s probably scratched. But she can’t worry about that now.
Not while she feels like killing someone.
Well, maybe killing them was the wrong word. Biting them. Ripping their flesh with her teeth.
From the shadows, a figure emerges. The first thing she notices is his height—six foot three or four—and his broad, athletic shoulders. When he steps into the glow of the club’s entrance, she sees how handsome he is, like a GQ model. Each feature looks like it has been carved from stone—a strong jawline, chiseled cheeks, and arched eyebrows that convey both intrigue and interest. His lips are red and full, the bottom one slightly larger than the top. On his wrist is an expensive watch. Around his neck, a leather thong necklace with some kind of symbol is nestled into the v of his short-sleeve Henley T-shirt. His jeans fit his muscular thighs like they were tailored for him.
Hallelujah, he’s handsome. She feels herself gravitating toward him, the place between her legs warming for the first time since arriving in Mexico.
Snippet 3 :
“One never can feel sad in the presence of such beauty.” His eyes trail from the sea to her face, studying her. “Like you, hermosa. How can I feel sadness when I look into your face?”
And yet his eyes betray a deep sadness she doesn’t understand.
She opens her mouth to ask him, but then he is kissing her, and she loses herself in him, his smell, his touch, his lips trailing down her throat to the hollow at the base. She groans, grinding her hips into him trying to quell the want that pooling there.
He picks her up, carrying her across the kitchen to the open doorway on the other side.
Lynn is a seasoned writer with over a dozen books under her belt. She’s been writing for years under another name and is excited to try something new. With multiple awards and Amazon best sellers to her credit, she’s pleased lots of fans in many genres. She’s loved paranormal romance before Twilight. She’s also a wife, mother and avid Pinterest obsessionist.
Gideon has one shot at redemption. Close the portal to Hell forever and return to Heaven, leaving behind millennia of darkness. Nothing means more than restoring his grace, until the one person he vowed never to see again places herself in his direct path. He has to resist her, but she is his Heaven—and his Hell.
Risking her life to shut Hell’s gateway, the last person Dina ever expected to encounter was the one she had lost forever. Duty, not desire, is what he instilled in her and what she will follow, regardless of how he makes her ache…Until the unthinkable happens and she must choose between honor and the only love she will ever have.
Torn between what they want and cannot have, Gideon and Dina must decide whether to make the ultimate sacrifice for the sake of humanity or let passion take them to where angels fear to tread.
Why are you not wearing panties?” he whispered hoarsely.
“Should I be? I’ve never worn them before?”
He hadn’t taken his gaze from her core. “You not wearing panties is something I would never have forgotten.
“Rule one of a hook up: Never out stay your welcome. We screwed each other’s brains out. Now it’s time for you to hit the road.”
Gold swallowed Dina’s pupils and her head tilted to the side. “I-I do not understand.”
Don’t make me do this. Gideon gritted his teeth, realizing there was no way out of this hell. “I fucked you. You came. I came. Now leave. Go back to Heaven.”
“Look at me.” Gideon growled, and the vibrations set her aflame.
Dina gazed down the length of her body. She glimpsed his pink tongue flickering across the top of her cleft. Pleasure so explicit, it bordered on pain combined with the hunger in his half-mast eyes had her flying again. She clutched him to her, rode out the indescribable while he continued to feast on her flesh.
Gideon slid up her spent body and framed her face with his hands. “You are the sweetest thing I have and will ever taste. Now, you’re inside me. Part of me. Thank you.”
Nothing had ever felt so wonderful…yet, something was missing. There was a hollowness she couldn’t explain. An emptiness that demanded to be filled.
“Is—is that it? There is more. I know this is more, Gideon. And I want it.”
Tmonique Stephens loves writing flawed characters who reflect the emotional baggage we all carry. She writes complicated stories for complicated people. Paranormal romances and fantasy novels are her favorite genre.
Check out her Descendants of Ra series. Eternity, Everlasting, Evermore, Encore, and Forever, are the first five novels available now. Entwined, the sixth novel in the series will be available in fall 2018. The first three novels in her UnHallowed series—Only The Fallen, Only One I Want (available for pre-order now) and Only For You—will all be available soon. Look for Only One I’ll Have in the fall of 2018.
Born in St. Thomas USVI, Tmonique Stephens grew up in The Bronx, New York one mile from Yankee Stadium. She loves SyFy, the History channels, and also Asian cuisine. But her heart and stomach longs for anything from the Caribbean. She’ll read anything about fairies, demons, or angels. She also enjoys Stephen King, Dean Koontz, and Preston and Child.
At any given time, you can find her on Facebook and live tweeting her favorite shows, The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones.
Frustrated, I remove my ball cap and thrust a hand through my hair. “Dad, relationships are not for me, okay? I’ve seen what it does to couples. All the pain and heartache. I don’t want to go through all of that.”
“You already are going through it. She’s your game changer, Bo. Girls like her don’t come around often. I’m telling you, you better snatch her up before someone else does.” All the playfulness is gone in his voice.
“She’s with some tool already.” Did he not hear me say that?
He arches a brow. “Are you sure?”
No, not entirely sure. “I overheard Cassie talking to her a couple weeks ago. She said the words, “You met a guy?”
“Just don’t assume, Bo. Call and talk to her. You might be surprised.” With a parting pat on the back, he gets up and goes back inside the house.
I sit here, contemplating my conversation with Dad. I can’t deny I have feelings for Jess, but love? No way. Maybe if I call her like Dad said, I might feel better.
Getting to my feet, I get in my truck and drive home. During the drive home, I manage to not talk myself out of calling her. It shouldn’t be that hard, right?
As I do the walk of shame back to my dorm, I think back to what Ryan told me before I left.
“If the pain ever gets too much, call me. I’ll be waiting. I won’t call you though, Jess, you have to call me.”
I didn’t tell him one way or the other because I didn’t know how to respond to that.
Faith still isn’t back when I arrive so I drop my bag on my bed and head straight to the bathroom for a shower.
Like always, my mind drifts to Bo. I wonder what he thinks of me. I could tell he was holding back from saying everything he really wanted to say. Doesn’t matter now, he’s made it clear that he isn’t going to let Faith go. He shouldn’t because Faith is perfect for him. She can give him all that I can’t. She’s happy with life while I’m constantly depressed. Bo doesn’t need a girl like me in his life.
It’s why I can’t go back to Brilliant. I need to go somewhere else to start over.
Shelby lives in Sweet Home Alabama with her amazing husband and their energetic son. When she is not plotting out stories, penning chapters, or working her full-time job, you can find Shelby spending time with her family and friends, reading, and watching reruns of One Tree Hill. Shelby is obsessed with Harry Potter and Alabama Football. Roll Tide.
Shelby writes Young Adult and New Adult romance. Her characters go through tough times, get in fights, and get their hearts broken, but in the end they will live happily ever after.
I’ve always been the social butterfly, the girl with an Angry Vagina Box, the one who goes home with just about anyone for a booty call. So, why in the hell am I lying in bed alone on a Friday night downloading The Watering Hole dating app onto my phone?
Wait, what? No. Why am I creating a profile? No, no, fingers! Stop scrolling!
Kind of nerdy chic, but cute.
I bet he’s a barista.
Why am I drooling over the guy who has a strong set of morals and only wears matching socks? Who the hell is this guy?
“The Watering Hole…it sounds like a pee trough or something.” I shake my head and lay my phone down next to me, willing myself to fall asleep before I do something stupid. The idea waffles back and forth in my mind for almost fifteen minutes. I don’t know what the heck makes me do it, but my finger hits the link to download the app before I can stop myself.
“I can’t believe I’m doing this.” I mumble. Within about fifteen seconds The Watering Hole app is on my phone and I’m opening it to see what happens. Will there be a list of guys I can just choose from? “I bet they’ll all be mega nerds who boast what big dicks they have.” I snort. “‘Cause you know, they speak Spockly and carry big dicks.”
“Hey Jacoby?” I say quietly as we sit in the treehouse copying math homework off each other. “Yeah?”
I’ve been waiting to ask him this question since yesterday, but I had to be certain we were alone first. Going through the foster system as much as I have sucks on so many levels. I may have made it to the eighth grade, but there’s so much I don’t know, and nobody to ask except my new best friend.
“Uh, so…do you know…what a twinkie is?”
I watch as she reaches for a bottle of lotion. She squirts some into her hand and looks up at me again. “You are about to taste like hot buttered rum.” She says. “My favorite.” She licks her lips and runs her hand up and down my length spreading what must be a flavored lube all around me. I gasp as a cool sensation spreads at her touch, and hold my breath for what she might do next.
She’s going to do it.
Breathe Jack. You got this.
Oh, my God, she’s really going to do it.
My very first blow job.
Susan Renee wants to live in a world where paint doesn’t smell, Hogwarts is open twenty-four/seven, and everything is covered in glitter. An indie romance author, Susan has written about everything from lawn mowers to thick colossal bottles of wine, and has won a Snuggle Buddy award for her nonfiction book, “The Hula Hoop Tester’s Guide to Jumping.” She lives in Ohio with her family and seven tiny donkeys. She’s a Pet Whispering major from OMGU with a Masters in medical care for inanimate objects (a la Doc. McStuffins). Susan enjoys crab-walking through the Swiss Alps, drinking Muscle Milk, and doing the Care Bear stare with her closest friends.
From the moment I met Grayson Cole, I knew he was someone I wanted to let in my panties and maybe, even in my heart. One night, one sexy-as-sin kiss, and several drinks later, our incredible evening turns into a disaster and I’m apologizing for the vomit spatter on his fancy, black shoes. I never thought I’d see him again after that, no matter how many nights I spent wishing I would. Until a month later, he waltzes into my office as—MY NEW, HOT BOSS. I’m so screwed.
She was meant to be a fun f*ck. That’s all I wanted. That’s all I needed. But Emma Williams could never be just that for me. The quirky, brunette vixen challenges me at every opportunity. My desire to have her has me working for her affections, like I’ve never done before. What is this woman doing to me? Not only am I her Boss, but I don’t do feelings. There’s only one way I see this ending. I’m f*cked for sure.
Betty Shreffler is a bestselling author of paranormal romantic suspense and contemporary romance. She writes sexy and suspenseful stories with hot alphas and kickass heroines with twists you don’t expect. She also writes beautiful and sexy romances with tough women and their journeys at finding love. Betty is a mix of country, nerdy, sassy, sweet and a whole lot of sense of humor. She’s a fan of photography, reading, watching movies, hiking, traveling, drinking wine, and all things romantic. She lives with her amazing hubs and five fur babies; two rescue pups and three cats. If she’s not writing or doing book events, then you can find her behind the lens of a camera, in the woods, or sipping wine behind a deliciously steamy book.
Ten of your favorite romance authors have come together for a charity anthology. With vampires, witches, wizards, shifters, shadow walkers, fallen angels, demons, and a wraith king, you’re sure to be enthralled. Be prepared for greed, lust, lies, and betrayal to culminate in coups and menages. After all, the fate of the world often depends on the actions of hot alphas.
Seven of your favorite romance authors have come together for a charity anthology. If you like billionaires and witty heroines, or high school sweethearts and runaways, or southern stories with a love as big as Texas, then settle in for tales of finding home, overcoming the past, loyalty, broken promises, and even a surprise wedding. Even family obligations can’t hinder what’s simply meant to be.
Ten of your favorite romance authors have come together. Enjoy second chance romances, sports romances, and rocker romances. Meet your new favorite bad boys and blue collar lovers. There may even be a surprise pregnancy or two.
Prepare to dance with the dark side of love. This collection is full of suspense with crimes like stalking, kidnapping, and murder. Meet some men in blue and some bad boys too. If you have a taste for dystopian, enjoy interracial love, and get hot and bothered over sexy protectors such as private investigators, the FBI and CIA, then one-click right away.
This set is about as naughty as a collection can get. They may look innocent, like the boy next door, or the brother’s best friend, they may be working like the blue collar guy making a house call, the undercover cop, the rock star, the bodyguard, or the stripper. Don’t be fooled. These stories are filled with romance, suspense, and temptation. Oh, and no one seems to decline the opportunity for romps in public, with a stranger, a roommate, or the occasional affair.
Learn how forbidden love makes for strange bedfellows in these modern fairy tales of love, lust, and deception.
Sometimes you must accept that love doesn’t always show up at your convenience.
Minnie has made mistakes and lots of them. Fresh out of rehab and back in her home town her plan is simple; she needs to make amends to all the people she hurt, especially her children, and get her life back on track. She has no room in her life for men – it was because of men she got in this mess in the first place.
The minute former athlete and current bar owner, Mitch sees Minnie he knows she’s something special. Now all he needs to do is convince her and the whole town that their being together will not undo everything she’s working so hard to achieve.
With all the obstacles to her success can Mitch prove he’s not just one more thing in the way.
If you like long bike rides, picnics by the lake and truffle fries then Any Way You Spin It is for you.
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“Did you get lost again, you live down the hall.”
“No, I brought you some fries.”
“You brought me fries?”
“Truffle fries actually. Sarah said you kind of moaned when she mentioned my truffle fries earlier.”
“She said I moaned about you?’
“About my fries. So, I brought them and myself to your door.”
“Well come on in then, although I don’t recall moaning.” She absolutely did, but he didn’t need to know that.
“Maybe you smiled. I’d rather make you moan than smile, but I’ll take either.”
“And I’ll take the fries.” She held out her hand so he could pass them over.
She lifted one from the bag and took a bite of the crunchy salty goodness and then she really did moan. “Okay mission accomplished, you made me moan, you can leave happy now.”
Mitch knew it was just a coincidence he’d run into Min. She was one of a handful of people he’d run into today. Moose had jogged past him at the park and invited him to dinner tomorrow night. He’d stopped to get gas and Dave the local policeman was at the other pump and when he’d gone into the diner half the town had been there. And he may have heard Mins name mentioned in whispers more than once. Patty had been holding court with her gaggle of minions. Running into the beautiful woman seated beside him improving the look of his truck exponentially was not destiny, even if it felt like it.
All she’d bought was a small block of cheese. Clearly, she was planning to do something with it.
“What’s the cheese for?’
“Meatballs and spaghetti.” His stomach, the betraying bastard groaned. “I gather you like meatballs.”
“I do. They’re a classic.”
“I’m going to have extra. I’ll drop some over.”
“You don’t need to do that.” His stomach rolled again.
“To say thanks for the bike, and the lift home.” Large raindrops were pelting the windshield now. “I’m pretty happy not to be walking in this.”
He looked over at her. She was looking at him with those baby blues so he couldn’t resist. “Okay, but how about you eat it with me? It’s kind of sad for us each to be eating alone.”
“Okay. I’ll just come down the hall when I’m done.” The town wasn’t big so he pulled the truck up outside the building minutes later. He stopped under the portico so she could exit without getting wet.
He watched her go, her perfect pear-shaped butt heading in the door and up the stairs. He knew he shouldn’t be looking at that butt or wanting that woman but knowing didn’t stop it from being so.
I am an Australian author who writes contemporary women’s fiction including chick lit and romance.
I have written all my life especially as a child when I loved to write short stories and poetry. At University I studied Creative Writing as part of my Communication degree. Afterwards I was busy working in public relations I didn’t write for pleasure for quite a few years although I wrote many media releases, brochures and newsletters. (And I still do in my day-job!)
When I began to write again I noticed a trend – writing dark unhappy stories made me unhappy. So I made a decision to write a novel with a happy ending and I have been writing happy stories ever since.
I am the author of five stand alone novels including Mr. Right and Other Mongrels and Hearts Afire and the Upper Crust Series. Many of my novels focus on an Australian characters meeting and visiting US characters.
I have been a member of the writing group The Writer’s Dozen for ten years. Our anthology Better Than Chocolate raised over $10,000 for the charity Room to Read and helped build a library in South East Asia. I am also a member of the Romance Writers of Australia. In 2015 had a piece on writing chicklit featured in the successful Australian non-fiction book Copyfight.
I live on Sydney’s Northern Beaches with my husband and daughter.
Amanda Larson is dedicated to her job and doesn’t want to make time for anything else. Until she runs into Jake Edwards. He used to be the cute boy next door; now he’s a sexy, big shot lawyer.
Jake Edwards isn’t interested in commitment. He’s successful, sexy, and single–and that’s how he likes it. When he reconnects with Amanda, Jake realizes he might have to rethink his philosophy on the carefree, bachelor lifestyle.
But, is it too late for them? Or can he convince her that he’s ready to give her his heart?
He took a step closer and shook his head, looking hotter than she’d ever seen him. His hands still rested in his pockets and his serious deep-blue eyes stared at her. “You don’t have to be scared of me.”
“I actually don’t trust myself, Jake.” She switched her weight to her other leg and rolled her eyes.
“Why? You think you’re going to jump me?” He chuckled as he took his last step to her. “I wouldn’t mind.” His gaze traveled over her face, as if he were memorizing every freckle.
He wanted more. Hell, she did too. But then what?
“So, you think that after I jump you, all this will go away?” She pointed back and forth.
“That this attraction will be out of our system and we can continue to be friends? Is that how it works for you?”
He clasped her body tightly to his, his hands wrapped around the sides of her waist, his breath on her face. “What I know is we’ve passed the line of friendship already, so we should just stop holding back.”
Jake leaned in closer, running his hand down her arm. “Know what I’m thinking?”
Amanda fiddled with her coaster and smiled at him. “I’m not sure I want to know.”
“I’m thinking we should spend a lot more time together.” He reached over and held her chin. “It’s been way too long.”
Amanda licked her lips, and damn it, it actually turned him on. Sweet little Mandy Larson wasn’t so sweet anymore. She was driving him crazy.
She moved closer bridging distance. “Why wait? There’s no time like the present.”
“Exactly.” He drank the last of his beer as the waiter returned with her martini sans olive.
Jake leaned on the table with his elbows, folded his hands together and studied her.
“Look at you, drinking a martini, living the life in New York City.” He examined her from head to toe. “A sexy skirt. Tall boots.” He ran a finger down her cheek. “A beautiful face.”
Amanda hiccupped and put down her glass. “Now, wait a minute. I know it’s been a while, but some things never change, including you.” She wagged her finger at him. “No smooth talking with me. Don’t forget I used to know you better than anybody.”
Because his fingers actually ached with the need to touch her again, he reached over and held her hand. “Yeah, but things have changed, Mandy. We’re two different people now, and I can’t wait to get to know who you are now.”
Amanda stared at Jake. “You’ve actually planned something I haven’t done in New York.”
He smiled and in a hoarse voice whispered in her ear. “Big Apple Virgin.”
Amanda cleared her throat. “I’m no virgin, Jake.” She leaned into his muscular body, and wiped her lipstick off his lips. “You may be in for a surprise tonight, too.”
She walked ahead of him and sashayed her hips more than usual. After a few steps, she stopped, peeked across her shoulder and said, “If you play your cards right.” She heard a growl behind her as she continued toward the boat, feeling Jake’s eyes on her.
Other books by Melinda Dozier
New York Minute
Breaking the Rules
Time Out, Valentine
One Lucky Night
Reading romance has always been at the top of Melinda’s favorite past times. You can always find a book in her hands no matter where she is. Melinda is Louisiana born, New Mexico raised, Guatemala adopted, and recently a newcomer to Houston, Texas. So, it’s only natural that her stories take place all across the world. Melinda loves reading, reality TV (obsessively so), traveling, blogging, and playing Farmville.
Dead End Job: When the only thing on tap is death.
A corpse discovered in a popular bar. An old acquaintance still nursing a mad-on from fifteen years earlier. And a cast of characters possessing secrets they’ll do almost anything to keep. It’s enough to make reformed (sort of) party girl Blaise Runa want to quit her dead end job. But in the meantime she fully intends to grab her sexy private eye fiancé and dig into the mess. Because she might be trying to adult, but that doesn’t mean she’s gotten any less nosy!
She struggled against her bonds, the ropes around her wrists chafing as she wriggled her hands to loosen them.
She’d been fighting to loosen the stupid things for hours…maybe days…beneath the foul-smelling bag they’d thrown over her head she’d lost track of time.
Nobody had come to check on her for a really long time. Nobody had brought her food or water. Nobody had asked if she had to pee.
Tears burned her eyes at the thought that she was going to die a long, agonizing death of dehydration in that horrible place.
It was cold and damp. Her clothing had grown heavy against her skin with the moisture. Water trickled nearby, tantalizingly close, and the smell of rotting vegetation told her it had probably been running for a long time.
Occasionally something skittered past, causing her to jerk her feet up until they were tucked close to her body. She made herself as small as possible, not knowing where danger would come from and unable to avoid it when it came.
Fear was an icy fist in the center of her chest, making it hard to breathe, even if the rope around her throat wasn’t already slowly choking her to death.
She sat as quietly as possible, trying to hear something…anything…that would tell her where she was. But in her panic she couldn’t hear anything except the constant trickle of water and the skittering of little rodent feet close by.
Beyond tears and exhausted from the emotional and physical mistreatment, she must have dozed off for a while. She was torn awake by the long, low boom of thunder. The air was thick with the smell of rain. A flash of light pierced the fabric of the bag covering her head and another thunderous groan soon followed. The storm was right on top of her. But when rain finally came, an impossible crashing of large, hard drops against the roof high above her head, she realized she was nowhere near the city.
If she were still in Indianapolis she’d hear traffic, horns honking, the occasional bleating siren. The realization brought tears stinging to her eyes again. She was all alone. Abandoned. With nobody to turn to for help.
A sob escaped and she slammed her lips closed over it. She wouldn’t give in to despair. She would find a way out of that place. And then she’d find a way back home.
She wouldn’t let them beat her.
No matter how low her odds of escape.
The darkening of the sky beyond the opening was all the impetus Blaise needed to stop feeling sorry for herself. If she didn’t get out of that well before it got dark she’d be working in pitch black conditions. She didn’t fool herself into thinking a fat, silver moon was going to cast light down the well to guide her way.
Her best shot was to get out of there while she could still see.
She shoved herself back onto the ledge and extended her legs again, pointing her toes until they reached the other side. Pressing against the wall, Blaise realized her toes were never going to hold all the way up. She arched her back and managed to flatten her feet against the wall. Happy she was wearing sneakers instead of her usual heels, Blaise took a deep breath and shoved against the wall with her shoulder blades, walking her feet up a few inches. Then she pressed her sneakers against the wall and, using her hands to help, shimmied upward a few inches.
Her back and calves started screaming after only going only a couple of yards.
By the time she’d gone half a dozen feet she was in tears. But by the time she was an arm’s length from the top the pain had become almost white noise in the larger problem waiting for her above.
As she’d neared the top of the well, she’d become increasingly aware of a crackling noise and the sharp scent of burning wood. The air above the well was dense with a gray haze she realized was smoke. But it wasn’t until the terrified shrieking started that Blaise realized what she was up against.
Somebody was trapped in the fire she could smell and hear.
Beneath the strident threads of pure terror in the chilling screams was a familiar note. Blaise recognized the voice. And it made her clumsy with renewed fear. Her feet slipped and, before she could stop herself she’d slid downward almost eighteen inches.
Blaise screamed in frustration and dug in again, determined to get out of that well to save Suz.
USA Today Bestselling Author Sam Cheever writes romantic paranormal/fantasy and mystery/suspense, creating stories that celebrate the joy of love in all its forms. Known for writing great characters, snappy dialogue, and unique and exhilarating stories, Sam is the award-winning author of 50+ books and has been writing for over a decade under several noms de plume.
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