Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Lauren Dane's Winner Day #9

The winner of the Juliana Stone prize is Marlene Breakfield. Congratulations! Contact Lauren with your information to claim your prize.

Take You to Another World Contest Day #10

Today, Jaci Burton is here giving away a copy of her fabulous new book, Riding the Night. I've been a huge Jaci fan for years, so it's a thrill for me to have her here at Love Musings-- she's a terrific writer and a wonderful person. So leave a comment below for a chance to win.


AJ and Pax work together as undercover operatives for a government agency of bad-boy bikers known as the Wild Riders. And though they play as hard as they work, both men are looking for the one woman who can tame them…

On vacation, AJ and Pax run into AJ’s high school sweetheart, Teresa. While they’re catching up at Teresa’s bar, a fight erupts between two biker gangs, leaving one man dead and Teresa’s brother wrongly accused of murder. With no proof and Teresa as the only eye witness, the trio points their Harleys toward the annual bike rally in South Dakota in hot pursuit of the real killer…

Her life in jeopardy, AJ and Pax become Teresa’s fierce protectors. But a past trauma keeps Teresa guarded, unable to trust them--until AJ and Pax uncover her secret and vow to do anything to help her heal. And in their arms she discovers a sensual desire that knows no boundaries, a passion strong enough to overcome her tragic past and awaken a force that brings both men to their knees.

Danger may temporarily bind the three together, but it’s their shared passion that will lead them to the ride of their lives: love.

Dawn hadn’t filtered yet through the blinds on Teresa’s windows, only shades of gray announcing it was morning but too early to get up.
It didn’t matter. She hadn’t slept much anyway, had tossed and turned, wondering what Pax and AJ were doing, coupled with random thoughts about the bar fight, what she’d witnessed, and her worry about Joey’s welfare. None of that added up to the ability to get a restful sleep.
She took a shower and got dressed, opening the bedroom door and moving into the living room, surprised to find both the guys there. AJ was asleep on the sofa, Pax sitting in a chair near the front window. He turned to her and smiled, grabbed the pistol sitting on the table next to him and slid it into his pants.

For some reason, knowing they were armed comforted her. Besides, there was something sexy as hell about a guy carrying a weapon who knew how to use it. Not for show or to look tough, but because it was part of his job.
“Heard anything from the police station yet?”
Pax shook his head. “Nothing, but it’s early.” He came over to her, brushed his knuckles along her cheek. “Too early for you to be awake. You didn’t get much sleep.”
She took a step back, not used to the little thrill that shot up her spine at his touch. She liked it, which made her uncomfortable as hell. “I’m fine. I’ll go make coffee.”
“It’s already made.”
“It is?”

“Yeah. I brewed a pot a little while ago. Go kick the couch and wake up AJ. I’ll start breakfast.”
“You don’t have to do that.”
He gave her a look over his shoulder, and a smile that made her toes curl. “I want to.”
A guy who made himself at home in her kitchen. That was also a little disconcerting. And comforting. And sexy.
It had been five years. And maybe it wasn’t freaking her out as much as it used to. She’d wanted to get back in the game again for a long time now. She was tired of being afraid, of letting what had happened rule her life. She wanted to be a woman again, and damn if she was going to let those guys ruin her. Every man wasn’t like they had been.
Every guy wasn’t going to hurt her. And maybe every guy wasn’t going to run away when he found out the truth about her.

She moved over to the sofa. AJ was too big for her average-sized couch. One arm was slung over his head, his booted feet hung over the edge of the arm. Beard stubble peppered his jaw, making his face look dark and ruthless. AJ had never been ruthless. A bad boy, yes, but he’d always been the fun kind of bad boy.
And he’d never hurt her.
Once, he’d loved her. And she’d loved him. But that love hadn’t been enough to keep him out of trouble. They’d just been kids, on the verge of adulthood. Neither of them had known what they were doing back then. It had been innocent and intense, as all teenage romances are.
Ten years later she still didn’t know what she was doing. Nor did she know who AJ really was now, other than he was one of the good guys.
She smiled. She liked that he was one of the good guys. It suited him. But he still carried an edge of danger that fit him well, too.
“You’re staring.”

Startled, she jumped back, realizing he’d moved his arm and his eyelids were partially open, revealing smoky grays studying her. She tried to calm her racing heart. Goddammit, when was she going to relax? “Sorry. I debated waking you.”
“I was already awake. Pax walks like a herd of elephants.”
“Fuck you,” Pax said from the kitchen.
AJ sat up and swung his legs over the edge of the sofa and planted his feet on the floor. “Plus, I smelled coffee.” He dragged his fingers through his hair, winked his sleep-laden gaze at the window, then turned his attention on her. “It’s still dark out. Why are you up?”
“I slept enough.”
He tilted his head to the side, examining her with his intense gaze, then stood, came closer. He reached out and grasped a strand of her hair in his hand. He held it light, not demanding, just let it sift through his fingers, his gaze focused on her face. “You look tired.”
She inhaled, let it out on a shiver of awareness. What was it about these guys that got to her, that made her so cognizant of them as men? Her usual wariness was absent when they were around, the blocks she put up nonexistent. She knew AJ, but he’d been gone a long time. She didn’t know Pax at all. And yet she’d let them stay in her house last night.
None of this made sense. She was usually a lot more guarded.

“Who’s hungry?” Pax called from the kitchen.
AJ’s lips curled in a way that made her stomach tumble and heat flush her skin.
“I’m hungry,” AJ whispered, so only she could hear.
He let go of her hair and walked away.
Her heart was pounding and her palms were sweaty. But it wasn’t from fear.
She took a full minute to get her body and emotions under control, then went into the kitchen to join Pax and AJ.
Question of the Day: I think Pax is a fantastic heroine, which gave me the idea for today's question. Who are some of your favorite heroines in romance novels? I really like Xhex from Lover Mine, Eve Dallas from Nora's Born in series, Mercy in the Patricia Briggs series, and Mercy from Nalini Singh's Psy/Changeling series.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Lauren Dane's Winner Day #8

Congratulations! The Day 8 winner for Beth Williamson's Unbridled is comment #4, loto Contact Lauren with your information to claim your prize.

Take You to Another World Contest Day #9: Laura Griffin

My guest today is a very dear and very talented friend. Since bursting on to the Romantic Suspense scene four years ago. Laura has wracked up a number of awards for her dark and intriguing novels, including a nomination for a Rita this year. She'll be giving away a copy of Unspeakable, which hits stores today, so leave a comment for a chance to win. Happy Release Day, Laura!


Elaina McCord’s dream of being an FBI profiler is in danger with her first case—investigating a string of murders near a Texas beach resort. The victims, all young women, were drugged and brutally murdered, their bodies abandoned in desolate marshland. Elaina’s hunch—met with disbelief by local police—is that these are only the latest offerings from a serial killer who has been perfecting his art for years, growing bolder and more cunning with each strike.

True-crime writer Troy Stockton has a reputation as an irresistible playboy who gets his story at any cost. He’s the last person Elaina should trust, let alone be attracted to. But right now Troy, along with the elite team of forensics experts known as the Tracers, are her only allies in a case that’s turning dangerously personal. A killer is reaching out to Elaina, taunting her, letting her know how ruthless he is and how close he’s getting. Now it’s not just her career that’s in danger—it’s her life. . . .

Troy Stockton’s boat was flat and narrow, and looked nothing like the other flat, narrow fishing boats living at the Lito Island Marina.
“It’s black,” Elaina said, gazing down at it from the dock.
“So?” He undid the bow line and whipped it into a neat coil, which he tossed on the boat’s floor.
“So, all the other boats are white.” She stepped aboard. Everything shifted, and he caught her arm to steady her.
“No law against black.” His hand dropped away, and he turned to flip some switches at the helm. Soon the engine grunted.
“Looks like it can go in pretty shallow water.”
“Eight inches,” he said with a touch of pride.
She looked around for a good place to stand. There weren’t many choices, so she rested a hand on the captain’s chair as they eased back out of the slip.
“Hold on.” He shifted gears, and then they were gliding in the other direction, moving out of the sheltering cove the marina shared with the police dock. Elaina glanced over her shoulder and watched the pier recede. She was going out on a boat with a man she barely knew, without letting her boss or anyone else know what she was doing. Not terribly smart.
She patted her back pocket, where she’d tucked her cell phone. While Troy had waited out on the patio at her hotel, she’d showered and changed into the jeans and T-shirt she kept stashed in her gym bag. Her Glock was strapped to her ankle, just above her Nike. She had her phone. And if Troy tried anything funny, he was going in the bay.
Elaina shifted, putting some distance between them. She couldn’t explain why he made her uneasy, but he did. It made no sense, because she spent every day surrounded by macho types—guys trained in firearms, and hand-to-hand combat, and mind games. As a border town, Brownsville attracted more than its fair share of gun-loving lawmen. Since day one, many of the Bureau, DEA, and Homeland Security guys had attempted to intimidate her either physically or by getting in her head, and she’d learned to blow them off.
But Troy was harder to ignore.
He stood between the helm and the captain’s chair, and she stood beside him, trying not to cling too tightly and reveal her fear of toppling out of the boat. She glanced over and noticed his ropey forearms and powerful-looking calves. He was some sort of athlete, obviously, and she tried to guess the sport.
“You get seasick?” Troy asked.
“No. Why?”

“You look uncomfortable.” But he wasn’t even looking at her. Those eyes—which were the exact green color of the bay—were trained on the southern horizon. He wore cargo shorts today and Teva sandals. His white T-shirt contrasted with his sun-browned skin, and she envisioned him on a surfboard.
Why was she even thinking about this? She needed to focus on the case, not Troy Stockton. The man had a reputation. It was coming back to her in bits and pieces. She didn’t usually read celebrity mags, but she had a vague recollection of the People she’d flipped through at her dentist’s office. Troy had been photographed with some gorgeous starlet. That girl from Corpus Christi. What the hell was her name?
“That was some profile you came up with.”
She cut a glance at Troy and saw the smile playing at the corner of his mouth. She bristled.
“What do you mean?”
“White male. Likes hunting and fishing. Owns a boat. Sounds like half the men on this island, including me.” He stared down at her, serious now. “Except for the getting-it-up part.”
Elaina felt a blush creep up her neck. “Look, Troy—”
“Here we are.” The boat slowed abruptly as he pulled the throttle up, and she stumbled into him. “She was found just over there,” he said.
Elaina looked in the direction he was pointing, but saw nothing unusual. Just more grass and water.

“How do you know?”
He tapped his control panel, and she noticed the GPS. “I got the coordinates.”
He got the coordinates. From the police, no doubt, who clearly were sharing information with members of the public, but leaving her completely in the dark.
“They got a good set of prints from the victim yesterday night.” Troy veered close to the shoreline, and the water was so shallow, Elaina could see grass on the bottom. “They’ll run the thumbs through DMV, hopefully get a positive ID soon.”
Elaina thought of Valerie Monroe, who’d graduated third in her class at Baylor med school and recently had been accepted as an intern at Texas Children’s Hospital. She wondered what Valerie’s parents were doing at this moment, although she figured she knew. Most likely they were either en route to Lito Island or camped out at the police station, waiting for news.
Troy veered left into a narrow inlet.
“We’re going in?”
“You want to see it, don’t you?”
“Yes, but…” she watched him deftly steer the boat through the tight opening. The water wasn’t even a foot deep, and she saw ripples in the sand as they skimmed along the surface. “What if we run aground?”

He smiled. “You get out and push.”
But they didn’t run aground. He tipped up the engine and slowed down, using just enough speed to maintain control over the steering as they maneuvered this way and that through all the channels. She began to doubt that he really knew where he was going. Maybe he was leading her to some generic patch of marsh.
She spotted something yellow tangled in the reeds. “Look there.” She pointed at it.
“Well, shit.” He let the motor stall and then jumped out of the boat and waded over to take a look. “I’ll be damned.”
The boat drifted into the grass, and bumped against the bottom.
Troy gazed down at the thin yellow twine, but didn’t touch it. “They must not have seen this,” he muttered. “Or maybe they came in from the south.”
“Who came in?”
He looked up. “The crime seen guys. Breck, Maynard, Chavez. They should have collected all this. It’s evidence.”
“Evidence of what?”
He trudged back to the boat and shoved it into the center of the narrow channel.
“Of your unsub.” He climbed aboard and got them moving again. “This marsh, it’s like a maze. I grew up all over this bay, and I get lost half the time. Looks like the killer used twine to mark the route so he could find his way out after dumping the body.”
Elaina stared at the twine, struck by the idea.
“And how do we know it came from him?” she asked. “Maybe Breck left it.”
“He didn’t.”
“How do you know?”
“Because.” Troy gave her a hard look. “They found it in Gina’s case too. He leaves it every time.”
# # #
Elaina continued to look queasy, so Troy hugged the coast as he headed back in. He felt her behind him as she gripped the chair and stared silently off into the distance.
She hadn’t liked him poking holes in her profile, but that was too damn bad. Sure, the profile sounded good in theory, but given the demographics around here, it didn’t narrow things down a whole lot. Troy had never cared much for mind hunters. Most of them stayed holed up in their basement at headquarters and rattled off psychobabble while the real cops rolled up their sleeves and worked the cases. If criminal profiling was Elaina’s thing, she was going to have an uphill battle getting anyone around here to buy into it. Profiling and fortune-telling were first cousins, as far as Chief Breck was concerned.
But she’d figure that out soon enough.

Troy glanced back at Elaina and saw that she still had that uneasy look. Her nose was pink, too, and she’d forgotten sunscreen. She wasn’t from around here, evidently, but he didn’t know her background. He needed to do some digging and find out just how green a green-horn she really was.
She squinted at something up ahead, and he followed her gaze.
“What’s going on?”
“Dunno,” he said. But as they neared the marina, it became clear something had gone down during their little sight-seeing cruise. Cars and news vans filled the LIPD parking lot.
“Breck’s holding a press conference,” Troy guessed, turning into the cove. They glided past the police station, and Elaina turned to gape at the crowd.
Troy pulled into his slip without touching the dock. He hopped out and tied the bow line to a cleat, then held out a hand for Elaina.
She barely glanced at it as she stepped onto the pier without help.
“I hope your police chief knows what he’s doing,” she said. “If he releases too much detail, he’ll compromise the investigation.”
“That’s one thing you don’t have to worry about. The man hates reporters.”
“But he talks to you?”

Troy walked across the pier and surveyed the situation. Breck was talking to the media—or more likely, dodging their questions—from the station house steps. Cinco stood on the sidelines. Troy caught his eye, and the deputy joined them on the lawn beside the marina.
“What’s up, Cinc?”
He glanced at Elaina. Then he eyed Troy’s muddy sandals and seemed to put it together where they’d been “Good news and bad news,” Cinco said. “We got an ID. Girl’s name is Whitney Bensen.”
Troy felt Elaina go rigid beside him.
“What about Valerie?” she asked.
“That’s the bad news,” Cinco told her. “Valerie Monroe is still missing.”

Question of the Day: Since Laura's excerpt takes place on a boat, I thought I'd ask-- what's your favorite method of transporation for long distances? Boat, car, train, plane? I'm partial to long meandering car rides, myself. In college, my friends and I would take off for road trips with a moment's notice and sometimes my husband, kids and I still do. Don't forget to coment for a chance to win Unspeakable.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Lauren Dane's Contest Winner Day #7

Congratulations! The winner of Moira Rogers Crux (in paper or digital, winner's choice) is Nikki! Contact Lauren with your information to claim your prize.

Take You to Another World Contest Day #9: Livia Dare

Today, the wonderful, talented Sylvia Day is giving away Eve of Chaos by her alter ego, S.J. Day. One of my favorite Urban Fantasy series, the Eve series is fabulous-- and Eve herself is absolutely awesome! So leave a comment below for a chance to win.

In the Flesh by Livia Dare

“Lush, evocative, inventive… Fans of Dara Joy will love this!” — Shayla Black, author of Possess Me at Midnight
* Romantic Times Reviewers Choice Award Nominee* 2010 CRW Award of Excellence Finalist* 2010 Write Touch Readers’ Award Finalist* 2010 National Readers’ Choice Award Finalist* 2010 RomCon Readers’ Crown Finalist* 2010 PRISM Award Finalist* 2010 Golden Quill Award Finalist

For five years, Sapphire has been the King of Sari’s most treasured concubine. Independent at last, she refuses to put herself in anyone’s control again. But now another’s meddling has led her into the path of proud, arrogant Wulfric, Crown Prince of the rival kingdom of D’Ashier. . . a man who is dangerous to her in every way.

The daughter of Wulfric’s fiercest opponent, Sapphire is a prized warrior in her own right and highly skilled in the sensual arts—in short, Wulfric’s perfect match. A lasting union is unthinkable, but the bargain they strike—to spend one night together, and then part—proves impossible in the face of a desire powerful enough to bring two countries to the brink of war, and two hearts to the point of surrender. . .


Wulf’s long-legged stride ate up the seemingly endless length of white stone hallway with ease. The guards stationed at various intervals bowed at the waist as he passed, their eyes wide as they stared at Katie squirming and swearing loudly over his shoulder. She had the vocabulary of a hardened soldier and she didn’t hesitate to use it. He’d never been so verbally abused in his life. Coming from Katie, he enjoyed it immensely.

The doors to the seraglio slid open when he approached. He entered to a chorus of eager greetings and sighs at his half-dressed state. As his concubines rushed toward him, he kept them at bay by holding up the hand not currently caressing Katie’s buttocks.
“Your Royal Highness.”
He turned to the elderly woman prostrated just to the right of him.
“Sabine.” He greeted his chamberlain with a smile. Once, she had been his father’s concubine. Now retired, she served Wulf by maintaining order in his harem. “You may rise.”
“Who is that you have there?” she asked, rising gracefully to her feet.
As he started toward the large rectangular pool that dominated the center of the room, she fell into step beside him. Three fountains broke up the tranquil surface of the water, the splashing sounds mingling with the melodious voices of his concubines and the sounds of birds chirping in the various cages that decorated the perimeter. The humid air was redolent with lush hothouse flowers, various perfumes, and luxurious bath oils. Jewel-encrusted doors lined the walls, each portal leading to the private quarters of a concubine. Drenched in the sunlight pouring from the massive skylight above, the expensive and precious gems winked and flashed to glorious effect.
He slid Katie from his shoulder, careful to keep his hold on her while maintaining her confinement within his robes. “Sabine, this is Katie.”

“Sapphire,” Katie corrected testily.
Grinning, he told Sabine, “She needs a bath and suitable garments. I want her body jewelry changed from sapphires to talgorite. I prefer her hair down. When she’s ready, bring her to my rooms.”
Sabine was eying the disheveled Katie appraisingly when the import of his words registered. Her gaze darted to meet his. “Y-your rooms, Your Highness?”
“That’s what I said.” With a flourish, he yanked the voluminous fabric of his robe from Katie, causing her to twirl outward from the enveloping folds.
She recovered her footing several feet away and glared at him. “Afraid to do it yourself, Wulf? We both know I can take you.”
His concubines gasped at her insubordination and her use of his given name, but he laughed.
“Yes. I’m quite taken.” His tone was a husky murmur, his gaze riveted by the sight of her bare body.

Enamored of her beauty, Wulfric watched her gaze roam. Her dark eyes paused briefly on each of the women surrounding the pool, all of whom eyed her back with curiosity and/or suspicion. Her expression grew taut, her hands fisting at her sides. It was only then that he registered his error in bringing her here. To the seraglio. Distracted by lust, he’d considered only the fastest way to get her ready for the long hours of sex he intended for them to enjoy.
He opened his mouth to reassure her, but before he could speak, Katie spun on her heel and fled. #
“Guards!” Sabine sounded the alarm before Wulf could react.
The doors slid open and four guardsmen charged into the room.
“Lock the door,” he roared as Katie leaped through the air to attack the nearest soldier. Naked as she was, the man was stunned and vulnerable to her assault. She kicked him dead center in the chest, knocking him flat on his back, then turned to engage the others.
Wulf raced after her.
“Don’t touch her!” Fear roughened his voice. Images of her injuries from the holo-room knotted his stomach. “Hurt her at your peril.”
Katie’s head turned at the proximity of his voice. Her grim expression betrayed her determination to find another way out.
Almost there…

He was a hair’s breadth away from catching her when she darted out of his reach and deserted the locked exit. He cursed. She backtracked into the room, heading toward the opposite side of the pool. Squeals and screams rent the air as startled concubines scattered out of her way. The birds in their cages cried out their alarm, their wings flapping frantically and littering the air with feathers.
She rounded the corner of the pool. Wulf vaulted diagonally across the small gap, his body stretched out as he flew over the water. He caught her, twisting in midair to absorb the impact when they crashed onto the marble floor and slid several feet.
“Let me go.” She struggled against him. He rolled, pinning her beneath him.

Their chests heaved together; his heart raced with the excitement of the chase. The scent of Draxian lilies filled his nostrils and relief at holding her after her frantic attempt at flight heated his blood. As Katie’s naked breasts pressed to his skin, his focus altered. Desire for her acted like a potent drug in his veins, making his entire body hot and hard.
Wulf lifted his head. “Everyone, out!”
His mind distantly registered the sounds of footsteps fading and doors slamming shut, but his focus was on the woman in his arms.
Taking her mouth, Wulf groaned his pleasure when she returned his kiss with equal fervor. He loved Katie’s body, so strong and lithe. She could fight and injure him—she had the knowledge and stamina—but she touched him with tenderness. She was toned by years of combat training, yet still soft, with generous curves and valleys that fit perfectly against him.

Katie began to struggle again, even as her tongue swirled greedily in his mouth. She didn’t want to want him, but couldn’t resist. That affinity stoked his lust to a fever pitch.
Wulf broke the kiss and buried his face in her throat. “Don’t fight me,” he murmured against her flushed, scented skin. “I’ll make it good for you.”
Gasping, she arched into him. “Release me.”
“I can’t.” He grabbed her wrists and pinned her arms above her head. He drew a taut nipple into his mouth, teasing it with his tongue before suckling her with hard, deep pulls.
“Oh!” Katie twisted in an effort to deter him. “No…”
Wulf moved to her other breast, nipping the hard peak with his teeth before soothing the sting with gentle licks. “Stop wriggling,” he rumbled, then he curled his tongue around the straining point of her breast.
Katie tried to buck him off but the movement only forced her legs to spread. His hips dipped between her thighs, settling perfectly into place because she was made for him.
“Wulf. No.”
“Remember last night?” he crooned. “How good it was?” His hips swiveled against hers, rubbing his rock-hard cock against her clitoris. “We were meant for this… you and I.”
As he rocked into her, massaging her pussy with the hard length of his dick, she moaned, “Give me the top.”
Wulf growled, remembering the way he’d felt last night when she plied her trade. “Why? So you can work?”
Holding her wrists with one hand, he reached between them to loosen his drawstring. His wrist rubbed against her and she hissed in pleasure.
“Isn’t that why you stole me?” she challenged. “Isn’t that why I’m here in your seraglio with all your other women? To work?”

Rough and impatient, he shoved his waistband down and his cock sprang free. With a deft twist, he pulled her over him, his legs kicking until he was freed from his pants. “It was a mistake,” he said gruffly. “I wasn’t thinking.”
“You’re not thinking now.” She gasped as he positioned his dick between her petal-soft lips and pushed into the tight, plush clasp of her pussy.
She held herself aloft with her hands on his chest, the slick walls of her sex sucking on the head of his cock.
He forced himself to wait. “Your choice, Katie. You said you could take me. Do it.”
Question of the Day: What plans do you have this summer? I've already been to Orlando with the kids, but am going back for the RWA conference at the end of July. Other than that, I'm hanging out at the pool with my boys, writing two books and enjoying my first break from teaching in quite a while.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Lauren Dane Winner Day #6

Congratulations, Jennifer D.! You're the winner of Marked :) Contact Lauren with your information to claim your prize.

Take You to Another World Contest Day #7: Robyn DeHart

Today, my wonderful friend Robyn is giving away a copy of Seduce Me, the first book in her Legend Hunters series. Robyn's a terrific historical writer and an amazing woman, so leave a comment for a chance to win this fabulous book (I read it in one sitting).

The Legend Hunters . . .
The Men of Solomon’s meet in secret, their very existence only a rumor among the best of Victorian society. They are treasure hunters, men of wealth and title, seekers of myths and legends. And no legend is as mystifying as the lost city of Atlantis . . .

Years ago, Maxwell Barrett found a map to Atlantis and dedicated his life to the search for the mystical lost continent. But when an alluring woman makes a wager for the priceless artifact, he may have discovered an even greater treasure.

A descendant of Atlantis, Sabine Tobias needs the map to decipher an ancient prophecy. What she doesn’t need are the sparks flying between her and Max. He’s too devilishly charming to be trusted: The fate of her people is at stake as well as her heart. Yet a ruthless killer also covets the map. Now Max and Sabine must race to decode the prophecy’s riddle before this criminal fulfills his deadly mission.


Max picked up his hand and glanced at the cards. A lousy combination that on its own would win nothing. It was why he loved this American game, the bluffing. Even with a mediocre hand of cards, he could win.
His table mates were a motley crew, and he had very little difficulty in deciphering when they held good hands or when they knew they would lose. Two of the older gentlemen had made excuses and left the table when the betting had increased. Now only four remained. A grizzled man with a full shock of white hair and a voice deep and cracked. A young man, perhaps one could even consider him still a boy as not even a hint of whiskers appeared on his chin. And the Earl of Chilton sat across from Max, a fine opponent when he wasn't drinking. Tonight though the man had had one too many sips.
The fourth player was, by far, the most interesting. A woman, dressed in a cream-colored confection with a plunging neckline that left very little to his well-developed imagination. She was the kind of woman one expected to see across a candle-lit ballroom surrounded by suitors, not a smoke-filled gaming hell surrounded by drunken fools. With her lustrous, sable-colored hair and her warm caramel eyes, she was nothing short of stunning. Though her darker complexion led him to believe she wasn’t originally from England, she had no accent to give him a hint of her homeland.

Though he’d never seen her before, she certainly looked like a well-refined lady, but he wasn’t completely convinced. While she had the mannerisms down and the look just right, something was different about her. And he knew he had never seen her before as she was not the sort of woman a man forgot.
Initially Max had found her distracting, but after losing to her two hands in a row, he'd straightened his seat and kept his eyes off her tempting cleavage.
Though she had won more hands than most of the men at the table that night, she was not an accomplished player. However, she proved, at times, difficult to read. Almost as if she were an actress slipping into a role, and while in character, she became charming, flirtatious and daring. But every now and then a veil would slip over her eyes, and Max would catch a glimpse of insecurity. He had yet to decide whether that was from the cards she held or something else.
"I raise," she said, her voice a warm, fluid honey. She arched a perfect eyebrow in his direction.
"My lord," she said.
Max glanced around the table. He knew from Chilton's smug expression that the man had a good hand. The old man had already laid down his hand, as had the young one. But what cards did the pretty miss hold?
"Such a temptress," Max said, never taking his eyes off of her as he dropped his coins into the betting pool. “I’ll call your wager.”
Chilton's brow furrowed, and he grumbled something incoherent, then backed out of the game. Evidently his hand, as good as it may have been, did not give the inebriated man enough confidence.
They had another quick round of betting before the dealer called for their hands, and Max flipped over his cards. Two pairs to a three of a kind.
"The lady wins," the man said.

With delicate gloved fingers, she scooped the coins in her direction, then stacked them neatly.
Chilton stood. "Enough of this foolish game for me.” He eyed the lady at the table, then looked at Max. “You’ve got a lovely playmate tonight, Lindberg. I believe I’ll retire for the evening," he said as he slipped away. Though Max spotted him finding a new chair at a different game four tables over.
Max collected his new hand and eyed the cards. As if they had been dealt by a deity, Max looked down on four Kings.
Again the other two gentlemen folded, leaving the hand down to Max and the lady, the mysterious and lovely woman with the caramel-colored eyes. This time though he could not lose. He had a brilliant hand.
She picked up a few coins, then paused over the center pot, glancing at her cards before slowly raised her gaze to his. "A different wager, perhaps."

Intrigued, Max nodded. "What did you have in mind?" Immediately his mind conjured images of all the sinful acts he could do to her body upon this very table. It would take hours for him to explore every delectable curve. He’d start at that sweet spot directly below her ear along the column of her neck. Then he’d work his way down.
“Your map, Maxwell Barrett. I only want the map," her words came out slow and deliberate.
Ah, she knew who he was, and she knew about his map.
It was no great secret that he hid away. Still he'd never broadcast it across Society. What would have been the point? It was popular to go in hunt of treasure or artifacts, but there was no scientific proof of the existence of Atlantis.
He’d once thought the map would be the ultimate proof, but no one except the men of Solomon’s had paid much attention to his discovery. So now the relic simply hung on his wall. Why the interest now? And how had she known?

Women talked, he knew that. And he'd had more than his fair share of women. And on occasion, he’d had one of them bent over his desk. Though he wouldn't have guessed many would give much thought to an old map. It would be quite the knock to his pride that one of those women might have noticed any element of his decor when he’d assumed they were more pleasantly engaged. The idea nearly made him chuckle.
It was on his tongue to inquire as to how she’d heard of his map, but more important was why she wanted it. "What does a beautiful woman such as yourself want with a dusty old map?" he asked.
She smiled, and it transformed her face from merely lovely into something much more. Her sheer beauty was like a kick in the gut.
She tugged on one of her satin gloves. “Perhaps I’m a scholar. Like yourself,” she said with a delicately arched eyebrow.
“I’m an adventurer, not a scholar.” If she legitimately knew anything about him, she’d know that. “And you don’t look any more like a scholar than I do.”

Her shoulders shifted so subtly, one could hardly consider the movement a shrug. “Then perhaps I’m merely curious. Do you accept the wager or not?” she asked.
Max looked back at his cards, then slowly slid his gaze up to her. "Tell me your name."
She nodded. "Sabine Tobias," she said.
Somehow in the midst of their exchange, a crowd had developed around their table. Low whispers flitted around as well as the occasional jab directed at Max. If Max wasn’t mistaken, a side wager had been established on who was going to win their hand. That was the one thing you could be certain of in Rand’s Gaming, people were always looking for a wager.
"Well, Miss Tobias,” Max leaned forward and leveled his gaze on her tawny eyes. “What do I get if I win?”
“The pleasure of winning,” she said with a faint smile.
Max shook his head. “I’m not certain that’s enough. How about a kiss?”
The crowd around them cheered. Shock broke through her careful façade, and her eyes widened, but she quickly recovered. “I don’t believe I was offering any kisses,” she said. “How about if you simply get to keep your dusty old map,” she tossed his words back at him.
Perhaps she knew more about him than she’d let on, or perhaps she knew more about the map than the average collector. He’d held onto that map for years despite several high-priced offers from other parties and one attempted theft. The map hadn’t been the conclusive proof he’d once believed it would be. His quest for Atlantis stretched across his adulthood and still he had not found it. But he was getting close. He could feel it.

Miss Tobias sat quietly, but her pulse ticked impatiently in that sweet spot beneath her ear.
“I believe you have a bet,” he said. “You win this hand, and I will give you my map."
She paused a moment, trying to gauge his meaning. "You know to which map I'm referring," she said.
"I believe I do."
"Then we have a deal."
“But if you lose,” he said slowly. “I get that kiss.”
She opened her mouth to protest, but after a breath, she said nothing and merely nodded.
"The wager has been set, now let us see your hands," the dealer said.
Silence surrounded them, and it was as if they were playing alone in his parlor. Miss Tobias flipped her cards, one-by-one, revealing three sevens and two Queens.
"A full house," the dealer said.
A slow, satisfied smile spread across the lady's face, a cat with her bowl of cream.
The pleasure of her smile was so enticing, so seductive, he was almost sorry he was going to win. Almost.
Question of the Day: Robyn's story is about the search for Atlantis, a place I admit I've always been fascinated with. Is there any mythical place you've always wanted to go or see or wished was real? Atlantis and Mount Olympus top my list ;)

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Lauren Dane Day #5 Winner

Yesterday's winner over at Lauren's blog is Roni Griffin. Congratulations and contact Lauren with your information to claim your prize.

Taie You to Another World Contest Day #6: J.K. Beck

So today, I'm introducing a brand new author to you, J.K. Beck, who is absolutely fabulous (and not so brand new-- it's the pen name for the amazing, bestselling novelist, Julie Kenner). Julie is a member of my local RWA chapter and a truly terrific person and writer. I've been waiting with bated breath for this trilogy to come out-- and once you read the blurb and excerpt, you'll know why. The first book, When Blood Calls, comes out August 31, so keep your eyes peeled.

Be sure to comment for a chance to win a $15 itunes giftcard.

In When Blood Calls, the explosive first entry in the new Shadow Keepers series, J.K. Beck expertly blends pulse-pounding romantic suspense with an evocative and original paranormal world. The result is a red-hot page-turner. I can’t wait to read more from this author!
Kresley Cole, New York Times bestselling author

Sara Constantine is one of the country’s most tenacious prosecuting attorneys—and she’s just secured a well-earned promotion. At first she’s thrilled. Then she finds out her new job involves prosecuting vampires and werewolves. And nothing prepares Sara for the shock she receives when she meets the first defendant she’ll be trying to put away: Lucius Dragos, the sexy stranger with whom she recently shared an explosive night of ecstasy.
When Lucius Dragos kisses the beautiful woman sitting next to him at the bar, he’s only hoping to blend into the crowd and avoid the perceptive gaze of the man he’s following…and planning to kill. But what starts as a simple kiss to secure his cover ignites into a fierce hunger that leads to an all-consuming passion. Charged with murder, Luke knows Sara will do whatever it takes to see him locked away—unless he can convince her that he’s not the monster she thinks he is. And that might mean making the greatest sacrifice a vampire can make.

The judge's body lay sprawled on the ground, eyes still open in surprise and terror. He'd known what was to befall him in his last seconds. Known that his betrayals had finally been avenged, his crimes soundly punished.
Without thinking, Lucius licked his lips, tasting the bitter flavor of Braddock's fear. Fear, but no remorse. Of all the monsters that moved in the night, Marcus Braddock had been among the most vile.
He was dead now. Justice delivered. Fate sealed.
It was over.
Lucius took one last look at the Los Angeles officer, standing stiffly in his uniform and talking rapidly into the radio on his shoulder as the lights from his patrol car painted the drizzled night in red and blue. Nearby, a female sobbed, the foolish jogger who'd discovered the body and called 911, setting the wheels in motion.
Soon more officers would descend. And then the others would come. The ones who would understand what had truly happened here tonight.
The ones who would search for Braddock's killer.
He needed to be gone before they arrived.
And with that thought, Lucius Dragos melted back into the night where he belonged.


"Rain," Tucker said. "You wanna tell me why we're always getting called out in the goddamn rain?"
"Clean living," Ryan Doyle answered, eyeing his partner with amusement as he slid his '63 Pontiac Catalina in beside an LAPD black and white. The flashing lights cast eerie shadows over the thickly wooded park, illuminating an ambulance and two unmarked piece-o'-shit vehicles that had homicide written all over them.

"And that," Tucker said, pointing to the nearest patrol car as he continued his diatribe of bad fortune. "We got cops coming out our a-holes. Now we gotta deal with the whole F'ing system."
Doyle slammed the gear-shift into park. "I'm gonna assume you didn't get laid last night, and temporary celibacy has soured your mood. 'Cause if this is going to be your attitude for this entire investigation, I'm putting in for a new partner."

Beside him, Tucker spread his arms wide, then flashed the smile that had made him a celebrity among all the Division 6 females. "I'm good, man. Don't get your panties in a wad."
Doyle grabbed his umbrella off the floorboards and shoved open the Pontiac's door. "Let's do this thing."

Tucker fell in step beside him, and they slogged toward an officer in a rain-soaked slicker who was currently roping off the area with crime scene tape. The officer stiffened as they approached, his eyes widening like a deer caught in the headlights. Rookie, Doyle thought, as the officer held up a hand. As if that could keep them out.

"You might want to step aside, junior," Doyle said, flashing his badge out of politeness, but not bothering to slow as he lifted the tape and started to slide under.
"I'm sorry," the officer said. "No one passes."
"We got authority here," Tucker said, staring hard at the guy. "So come on, rookie. Get off our backs and let us through."
The officer's face went through the usual jumble of confusion before smoothing out. He smiled, all polite cooperation. "Absolutely, sir. Detective Sanchez is right over there." He pointed to a woman with a heart-shaped ass. "She's in charge."
"Not anymore," Tucker said.

Doyle followed his partner inside the crime scene tape, unable to stifle his grin. "One of these days, you gotta teach me how you do that."
"It's a gift," Tucker said. "Comes in handy with the ladies, too."
"I bet it does. Doubt you could get the ladies any other way."
"You wound me, man," Tucker said, pressing his palms over his heart. "I'm seriously wounded."
Doyle shook his head at his partner's antics, but didn't bother to respond. Sanchez had already spotted them and was on her way over, her Noxzema-fresh face pinched.

"Hold up, hold up," she said. "You want to tell me who you boys are and what you're doing at my crime scene?"
"That's just it," Doyle said, pulling his shield from the pocket of his rain coat. "I'm not so sure it's still your crime scene. I'm Agent Ryan Doyle." He nodded at Tucker. "My partner, Agent Severin Tucker."
She peered at his shield and ID, then met his eyes, her own filled with confusion. "Homeland Security?"

Doyle nodded. Technically, it was true. With the passage of the Patriot Act, his employer — the American arm of the Preternatural Enforcement Coalition — had been formally set up as a division of Homeland Security. A secret division, but there nonetheless. And considering the type of terror the PEC chased, there was a certain circular beauty to the ancient organization's new cover story.
She stared him down. "Are you shitting me?"
"No ma'am," Tucker said. "We at Homeland Security do not have a sense of humor of which we're aware."

She tilted her head and sent Tucker a scathing glance, because despite the soft shape, she was clearly a hard ass. "Since when did killers mimicking some creature out of a bad B-movie cross the line into a federal crime?"
"Sorry, Detective," Doyle said. "That's classified."
"Suffice it to say there's been chatter," Tucker added.
She looked from one to the other, obviously not buying their bullshit. Doyle watched Tucker's face, saw that he was getting the look, and stepped in front of his partner. Tucker's trick came in handy, but he couldn't pull his sort of heeby-jeeby on the whole crew. And while Sanchez might be the only one currently making noise, there were at least seven officers hanging back, circling the body with intent to claim grazing rights.
"We got jurisdiction here, Sanchez. You need confirmation, you call this number and ask for Nikko Leviathin." He handed her a card. "Otherwise, we're gonna go check out our crime scene."
The gal stepped up, getting right in his face. He clenched his hands into fists, fighting a temper that rose like molten lava, ready to explode at any moment. He sucked in air, stifling the urge to lash out and show her — right then — exactly who was in charge there.
"You wanna play who's got the bigger dick?" she said, unaware of the increasing danger. "You go right ahead. But this is my crime scene until my Lieutenant or the District Attorney tell me otherwise."

"Those'll work, too," Tucker said, his hand firm on Doyle's shoulder, the pressure just enough to keep Doyle grounded, to bring him back from the rising danger. "In the meantime —" He cut himself off, then shot Doyle a warning look before turning and heading toward the body.
Doyle drew in a breath, then another, forcing the final remnants of the dark back down before he followed in Tucker's wake. Sanchez looked ready to spit nails, but she hung back, her cell phone now plastered to her ear.

"So what've we got?" he asked, peering down at the ghostly pale form of retired judge Marcus Braddock. By all accounts, the man had been a shape-shifting son-of-a-bitch, but that didn't mean Doyle would wish murder on him. And this particular cause of death was the worst kind of murder. The draining of a human or a para-human was a Class Five homicide in violation of the Fifth International Covenant, and punishable by public execution. Bad shit all the way around.
Tucker was already squatting near the body, his hand reaching for Braddock's collar.
"Do you mind?" a rat-faced little man said, firmly shoving Tucker's hand out of the way.
"Careful," Tucker said mildly. "Do that again, and you'll lose a few brain cells."

The rat hesitated, confused. Then Sanchez stepped up, her expression pure business. "Let him see," she said. "They've inherited this mess. Guess that means they've got access to whatever they want." She faced Doyle head on. "Including my resources, I'm told. At least until your own team arrives."
"And we appreciate the cooperation."
Sanchez's smile was like ice. "I'm sure you do." She nodded toward the uniformed officer. "You're relieved," she said, then smiled at Doyle. "Limited resources." She signaled to the rat with a jerk of her chin. "Go ahead. Show the Feds what they want to see."
Ratboy slid his hand into a latex glove, then tugged the collar down, revealing the ripped flesh and brutalized muscle.

Bloody vampires. Despite the Covenant and the strict laws against contact feeding, it seemed like every time he turned around one of the fuckmongers had sucked somebody dry.
He clenched his fists at his sides, hating their weakness. Disgusted by their lack of restraint. And, yeah, he'd seen all the damn statistics that showed that the vast majority of vampires could control the daemon within. That they didn't feed on humans. That they didn't kill. That they obeyed the law.
That they weren't the walking, talking incarnation of pure, fucking evil that Doyle knew they were.

Statistics be damned. As far as Doyle was concerned, the only good vamp was a dead one.
Marcus Braddock may have been a prick, on and off the bench, but Doyle was going to make sure that the rogue vampire who sucked the life from him went down — either a stake through the heart or an ax to the head.
"I would have said serial killer until you boys showed up," Sanchez said, her comments pulling Doyle back to the moment.
"No ma'am," he said. "This is much worse."
The rat and Sanchez exchanged a glance, and when she nodded, Ratboy cleared his throat. "We found this under the body," he said, holding up a clear evidence bag.
Doyle took it, his eyes not needing the illumination from the flashlight that Sanchez politely held up. A silver signet ring, caked in mud. Even half-hidden by the earth, the intricate craftsmanship stood out. A delicately carved dragon with a ruby eye, the body forming a circle as the beast consumed its own tail.

Tucker leaned in for a closer look. "Isn't that —"
"The Dragos crest," Doyle said, his smile cold and hard. Lucius Dragos, the last Dragos standing. Finally, after all these years, he had his old friend's balls in a vise.
"Holy fuck," Tucker said. "Talk about a gold star evening. All this time without one piece of solid evidence, and now Dragos goes and makes a mistake like this? It's too fucking good to be true."
He squatted beside the body, then tilted his head to look at his partner. "I need to see if there's more."
Tucker shook his head, then looked meaningfully at Sanchez and Ratboy. "You really want to deal with the paperwork?"
Doyle thought of the stack of reprimands and warnings that already peppered his file. Any more, and he was deep in some serious shit. "I'll only get dinged if Division finds out."
"Is there a problem?" Sanchez asked.

"Not yet," Doyle said. To Tucker, he added, "You know I have to do it."
"Aw, hell," Tucker said, then rolled his shoulders in defeat. "Fine. Go for it. What's a little official reprimand between friends, right?"
As Tucker looked deep into the eyes of Detective Sanchez, Doyle pressed his palm over Braddock's forehead. Ratboy's feathers ruffled almost immediately. "Are you insane? You're not even wearing gloves. How can you —"
"I can explain," Tucker said, crouching down next to the man as Detective Sanchez wandered away, suddenly remembering that she had an elsewhere to be. While Doyle concentrated on finding Braddock's last thoughts, Tucker put some mumbo in Ratboy's jumbo and sent the little worm on his way as well.

"I couldn't go deep," Tucker said. "Too risky. So you better find it fast."
Doyle nodded, but didn't speak. He was getting close.
Darkness. Surprise. Pleasure, even. At least until it turned. Shifted.
Then the fear came.
A mishmash. Horror. Pleasure. Pain.
None of it coming together, none of it coalescing into an image.
Just confusion. A jumble of confused emotions and reactions. Nothing to grab.
Nothing to hold on to.
"Come on, come on," Tucker said, as Doyle closed his other hand over the body's heart, trying to get purchase on the fading aura.

Dizzy. Gone.
And death, so cold and familiar.
And then, finally, a face.
The last image of death. The last conscious thought.
Doyle looked. And in his mind saw Lucius Dragos, fangs bared, as he bent close to suck the last vestiges of life from Judge Marcus Braddock.
Doyle's teeth chattered and his body shook as he pulled free of Braddock's mind. But he had Dragos now, had him dead to rights.
Exhausted, he tilted his head up to face Tucker. "We finally got him, partner. And we are going to nail his ass to the wall."
Question of the Day: What's your favorite supernatural creature to read about? I'm partial to shifters-- dragons (obviously) and big cats, as well as witches. Leave a comment for a chance to win a $15 iTunes giftcard.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Lauren Dane's Winner Day #4

Congratulations, Tracey D! You're Lauren's winner for yesterday. Contact her with your information to claim your prize.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Take You to Another World Contest Day #5: Red Garnier

I met Red only a few months ago, after reading her book The Satin Sash-- which I loved. Her new book, The Feather, is in book stores now and it's a really good, really interesting read. Leave a comment below for a chance to win it!


It can drive a woman wild—-and to places too forbidden to comprehend.

After decades dedicated to business, successful corporate lawyer Meredith Sinclair is having the wildest ride of her life. James Hamilton—hunk, god, legend—is everything she respects, admires, and desires in a man. So when James makes her the most indecent proposition she’s ever heard, Meredith can’t resist. After all, he knows every which way to satisfy a woman.

That night, as he sends shocks of desire through Meredith’s naked body with a feather she’s treasured all her life, Meredith is overcome with something else: an unknown and consuming fear…

A hazy vision takes Meredith back to Victorian England, where she’s exchanging sexual favors for money—and where James is a lord bound by his duties to society. And now Meredith and James must come to terms with their star-crossed past if they can ever hope for a future together. But will the soft strokes of the feather take them to heaven, or to hell?


“May I come in?”
The sudden question was preceded by two taps on the door, and followed by the appearance of James Hamilton. Black suit, black tie, no smile. All perfect. Her office shrunk two sizes on the spot.
Meredith stiffened in her chair, then frowned at her computer as though she’d been riveted by some e-mail or file on it. “James. What a surprise.”
He shut the door behind him with a click. And her heart went thud. Thud, thud, thud.
Suddenly, his bold, sophisticated presence made her inhumanly aware of everything unsophisticated about her office: the corkboard haphazardly hung on the wall behind her, the silk roses in the glass vase on the corner of her desk—roses that had never seemed so fake before.
He could have been Bond—James Bond—and she the silly Miss Moneypenny.
Unaware of her distress, James stuck his fingers into the pockets of his pants and crossed the small space to stare thoughtfully out the window. Meredith’s tenth-floor office had a very uninteresting view of the back alley. No one had ever stared so long at it before.
When silence had reigned for minutes, Meredith brought her hands up to the keyboard, so that if he turned, she could busily type something. He didn’t glance at her, though. He braced a hand on the window frame above him, while the other stretched the material of his pants as he fisted it in his pocket.

“You didn’t let me drive you home.”
His voice throbbed, so thick and so unlike him that a ball of regret plummeted to her stomach.
She swallowed painfully, feeling foolish. Like the coward she was.
“Meredith . . . I don’t say anything I don’t mean—” He cut himself off. His thumb tapped in his pocket in what had to be the first sign of restlessness she’d ever seen from him. “When I asked you to stay, I wanted you to.”
Meredith hadn’t noticed she was twirling the phone cord until she had to untangle her finger. “I’m sorry. I belatedly realized how inappropriate it was of me to stop by uninvited.”
“Did I give you the impression you weren’t welcome?” he asked quietly.
The bed creaked in her ears. Her moans echoed, his soul-melting voice uttering sexual commands in her ear. She shivered.
“No. No, you didn’t,” she admitted, noting he seemed to have forced his thumb to be still. “But I considered how neither of us wants any complications, and I thought it best to leave. I hate to inconvenience you.”
“Christ.” He laughed—not a happy laugh—and shook his head. “You don’t. Inconvenience.” He came over with three determined strides. “Haven’t you read between the lines yet?”
“I’d need a loupe to read one of yours,” she said, smiling. She fell solemn when he bent over the desk, his expression serious.

His nostrils flared. Silver eyes that were gripping in their intensity coasted across her features, making her breath quicken. With one tanned hand flat on the leather-topped surface, the other reached out and . . . and . . . felt so good as it glided . . . over her cheekbones . . . her lips. His voice, when he spoke, was deep and thick, and the most erotic thing she’d ever heard. “Spend the night with me.”
Her womb constricted, gripping tight with need. While muscles that needed him rippled with awareness, Meredith tucked her face into his warm, dry palm, unconsciously seeking his caresses. With his thumb he brushed her skin with up to her cheekbone, then ran his knuckles up and down before his thumb returned.
“Will you come to me tonight?”
What kind of things did a woman wear and buy and say and do to drive James Hamilton crazy? Meredith would like to know. Because inside, her mind was a whirl, her body not even hers anymore, and she felt so alone. . . . She feared only she was in this turmoil and he was just calm, confident, sexy. . . .
They were enclosed in her office, but they were whispering like misbehaving children hiding in a closet so they wouldn’t be caught. Meredith could feel their hot, intimate whispers running over her bones like ribbons. Her voice was breathy and soft, and her head fell forward as she asked, “Do you want me to?”

His thumbs took ages to trace the contour of her lips, to slide sinuously between them. “I’m asking you to.”
She ached. Felt void without it. Him. Thrusting and thrusting and thrusting.
Her breasts prickled, demanding she take him up on his offer and beg him to rub her with his palms and fingers.
He was asking her for a night, an entire night, and she did not want to think of the dangers. Only of the pleasure.
Relaxing in her seat as he fondled her lips, Meredith allowed her tongue to slip out to lick him, and she closed her eyes when he pushed his thumb in for the delectation of her senses. She softly suckled, tasted skin and salt and him. He murmured, “Come to me tonight.”
“So I can kiss you.”
“Make love to you.”
“All night.”
She buried her face deeper into his hand and nuzzled him as she pressed a kiss to the center of his palm.
“Do you know what else I’m going to do to you?”
She was breathless with anticipation, susceptible to anything he’d say he’d do. And if he said, I’ll hurt you, Meredith. I’ll break your heart and make you regret every word and sigh you ever gave me, she would still succumb.
He came around the desk with agonizing slowness, then behind her chair, to tug the backrest down with his hands as he bent to whisper in her ear. “I’m going to restrain you,” he said, his voice like velvet flowing into her veins. “I’m going to tie you up from the top of your head down to your two little feet, so the only part of you that can move will be your mouth as you cry out my name.”

Oh, god. His arms came around; one hand slipped under her jacket, and the other delved into her skirt. Meredith’s body arched to accept both of them, and his amused chuckle made the little hairs on her arms rise to attention.
“You like restraints, don’t you? They excite you.” He fondled the sex, the breast, the taut, beaded nipple. His fingers burned her through her clothes. “You’re a sassy little lawyer, you like power, but you like feeling helpless, too. You want to feel trapped, to wiggle your way around the free area. . . . You like limits, knowing there’s something bigger than you out there, and messing with it. You like messing with me.” Her soaked silken panties were glued to her flesh as he stroked his finger up and down the material, tracing the entry of her sex. “Guess what.” Her nipple pinged when he grasped and pulled. “I want to take you there. I want to take you high and low, touch and lick you until you’re so hot, so fucking aroused, you’d come at the touch of a feather.”
“Oh, god, James.”
“Say yes, Meredith. Come to me tonight. Come play with me.”
When her assistant’s voice outside her office registered in Meredith’s lust-fogged mind, she started in her seat, pushing James’s hands away. By the time the young blonde opened the door and peeked inside, Meredith sat calmly in her chair while reviewing the contract, with James looming behind her, his head bent as though he were reading, too.
“I’m sorry. Did I interrupt anything?” Kylie asked, and Meredith looked up and blinked.
Come at the touch of a feather . . .
She set the contract aside and waved a hand in the air. “Kylie. Oh no, Mr. Hamilton and I were just . . .”

“Actually, Kylie, you are,” James said, propping a hip on the corner of Meredith’s desk and gazing at her with the confidence of one who is used to being obeyed. “Do you mind giving me a minute with Miss Sinclair?”
Kylie’s smile faltered as she scrutinized James first, then Meredith.
Come at the touch of a feather . . .
Meredith felt such hot, blazing color creep up her neck and cheeks, it took all her effort to keep from ducking under her desk.
“Julian wants to see you,” Kylie finally told her.
Meredith rose from her chair, her thighs still weak from the desire pumping through her veins. But Julian was, after all, the owner of the company, and her boss. “I’ll be right there.”
When Kylie nodded and shut the door behind her, James’s presence became a Herculean force inside the room. Pulling at her. Weakening her. Every atom inside of her, every cell, seemed entirely focused on him, on his steady breath, his virile scent, his size and frame and the entire space surrounding him.
He caught her elbow as she tried to pass. His fingers around her bone formed a steel-like bracelet as he flicked his wrist and spun her around. His eyes burned his question into her. Stamped his desire into her. “And my answer?” he prodded, the silver orbs of his eyes almost engulfed by the growing black of his pupils.

Desire crashed through her like a frenzied stampede that abolished doubt and reason. Lava inundated her veins.
Inwardly trembling with anticipation, afraid of everything he made her want and feel and crave so potently, she pulled her elbow free.
With the cacophony of her heartbeat echoing in her ears, Meredith strode across the room and set her hand on the doorknob. And without meeting his gaze, before even trying to continue to rationalize all the feelings he stirred in her, she whispered, “Yes.”

Question of the Day: I just got back from Disney World (where we all had a blast despite the crazy heat) so I thought I'd ask a question about amusement parks today. Which amusement park is your favorite? Though I enjoyed Disney World, I'm still partial to Disneyland and Universal Studios in California-- maybe because I remember them from when I was a kid and it was so exciting to go there that I wouldn't be able to sleep the night before. Anyway, what's your favorite and why?

Winnerfor Lauren Dane's Contest Day #3

Congratulations, limecello! You're the winner of the Jess Granger book over at Lauren Dane's blog, so contact Lauren to claim your prize.

Take You to Another World Contest Day #4: Emily McKay

I'm sure it's becoming apparent that I've stacked this contest with my friends, but I can't help it-- they're so fabulous I have to tell you all about them! Today's guest blogger is Emily McKay, a dear friend of mine from my local RWA chapter. She's one of the absolute coolest ladies I know and a terrific writer-- and I'm not just saying that because we're in the middle of writing a YA together called The International Kissing Club (although she is a fantastic writing partner). Today, Emily is giving away a copy of her January release, Tempted into the Tycoon's Debt.
Excerpt: His Accidental Fiancee

Stepping up as the fake fiancé: Connor Stone could not forget his one night with Brittney Hannon. And when they were unexpectedly reunited, he had to have the senator’s daughter once again.Yet Brittney had to avoid all scandal...forcing Connor to play the role of pretend groom.


Connor Stone looked up from his drink and saw the next woman he was going to take to bed.
He knew it the instant he saw her standing by the bar in Riffs, the jazz bar where he was sipping away his Thursday night. The fact that she was there with a date didn’t particularly worry him.
He had met his buddy Tim for drinks. Connor had been watching the gorgeous blonde since she’d first arrived ten minutes earlier. Based on the way the guy was acting, they were probably on a bad blind date. He kept glancing at his watch and tugging at his tie.
Though why a guy would try to ditch a woman like her, Connor couldn’t guess. Her face had an extravagant beauty that made her impossible to ignore. Her movements had a grace and sensuality to them, as if she moved in rhythm to the quartet playing standards in the corner. Through the constantly moving crowd, he could see her well enough to tell her body was made for sin. Unfortunately, all those lush curves were encased in a demure navy dress. Why would a woman with a body like that shield herself in a layer of protective armor meant to hide her most appealing attributes?

Connor was debating whether or not to wait for her date to leave before approaching her when Tim nudged him. “If you’re thinking about hitting on her, I should warn you, you’re going to strike out.”
Something about Tim’s tone irritated him. Tim was a work friend, and frankly, Connor had always thought Tim skated by on family connections rather than hard work.
“Don’t tell me you know her.”

Tim smiled smugly, then leaned closer to be heard over the music. “Brittney Hannon. Daughter of Senator Jonathon P. Hannon. Just last week, New York Personality magazine did a big interview with her. Called her ‘The Last Good Girl in America.’”
Connor eyed his target. She did have a certain puritanical quality to her. She wore her blond hair long and straight. If Marsha Brady had come to the bar directly from Sunday school, this is what she’d look like.
He’d always had a thing for Marsha Brady.

“You think good girls can’t be tempted?”
As he asked the question, Brittney looked up from her nervous date and met Connor’s gaze. The awareness between them arced across the room. He felt it like a strong kick to the gut.
“I’ll bet you a thousand dollars you can’t get her into bed by the end of the summer,” Tim said.
Brittney looked down at her drink, clearly disconcerted. Connor smiled. “I’ll have her in my bed by the end of the week.”

Tim just laughed. “You’re going to have to work fast then. From what I’ve heard, she’s a polo fan.”
“Boy, you really don’t follow society news, do you?” Tim looked at him like he was a moron.
“I follow the financial news.”
“Well, she’ll be in Bridgehampton all summer for the polo season. While you’re in town, working.” Tim gave him a punch in the arm. “You should get your head out from under that rock and play a little.”

Easy for Tim to say. His family was old money. All Tim had to do was sit back and make sure he didn’t screw up too badly.
Connor, on the other hand, came from a blue-collar family in Pennsylvania. If he didn’t work his ass off, his clients lost millions. And if that happened, his career as a hedge-fund investor would be over. “I gotta work hard so I can play hard,” he explained.

But the truth was, he had been working too hard lately. It was time to cut loose. And Brittney Hannon was just the woman to do it with. As if on cue, her nervous date tossed down a few bills, gestured toward the door and made a run for it.
The guy was clearly an idiot—at least he hadn’t stiffed Brittney with the bill. But his loss was Connor’s gain.

This is going to be too easy.
Ugh! After that excerpt, I so don't want to wait until August to read this book. Marsha Brady, indeed. Since this excerpt is based on instant attraction, I thought I'd ask how you felt about that in real life? Do you believe in love (or lust) at first sight? I used to say no, but when I met my husband, I fell super hard. He asked me to marry him one week after we met, and though I turned him down, when he asked me five days later I threw practicality to the wind and gave him a resounding yes. We've been married fourteen years now, so I guess there's something to the old lightning bolt ...

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Lauren Dane Winner Day #2

The winner of Vivian Arend's book from Lauren Dane's blog is Andrea, comment #24. Contact Lauren with your information and congratulations!

Take You to a New World Day #3: Jessa Slade

Today's guest is Jessa Slade, a new and wonderful paranormal author. I first met Jessa at RWA nationals last year-- she was sitting across the tabl from me at a dinner and the two of us hit it off. It wasn't until later that we found out we had more in common than we thought-- not only do we both write for NAL, we're also both with the same agency. Please join me in welcoming Jessa to Love Musings. Today, she'll be giving away a copy of Seduced by Shadows, her first paranormal romance.
Blurb for Forged if Shadows:
The war between good and evil has raged for millennia, with the Marked Souls caught in the middle. But the new girl doesn’t play by the old rules...

Blacksmith Liam Niall never wanted to be a leader. Barely surviving the Irish Potato Famine, he escaped to Chicago...where he lost half his soul and gained a wayward band of demon-possessed warriors. Now, as the talyan face a morphing evil, Liam grows weary and plagued by doubt…until a new weapon falls into his hands. Her name is Jilly Chan. To save her demon-ridden soul, Liam must win her for his battle—and his bed.
Waging a one-woman war against threats to the street kids she mentors, Jilly won’t be any man’s woman...or weapon. But Liam—with his hard eyes, soft brogue and compelling hands—is a danger to her rebellious independence...and her heart. Even as the proudly independent Jilly tries to remain true to her own soul, Liam's fiercely passionate touch leaves a mark on her flesh as searing as her new demon tattoo - and Liam's own iron will is about to be tested to the limits...

Two halved souls sharing one fierce passion will sear a fresh scar across the city. Who’s in danger now?
In this scene, our heroine, Jilly Chan, for the first time faces the malevolent demons stalking Chicago…and the man who will fight for her heart. To read the first three chapters, visit
* * *
In her calmest, pre-saloon-brawl voice, she said, “I don’t want any trouble.”
Didn’t want, yet always seemed to find. The three monsters took a step in unison toward her.
Yeah, that line never worked in the movies either.

She should be terrified, considering what had happened the last time she faced a monster like these. Well, not quite like these. Rico had been a plain old human monster with one gold tooth, not mandibles. Somehow, these actually seemed less scary. Her heartbeat ramped up, not with fear—or not only with fear—but with a savage glee so that the catch in her compromised breathing sounded like eagerness. How sick was that?

She couldn’t hear the kids at all now. She was alone. Her pulse went semiautomatic fire in her ears, and her muscles burned like a dozen police flares had been struck in her joints.
“Okay, then. Red rover, red rover, let Jilly come over.” She took three steps forward. Her bootheels rang hard on the pavement.
Then a fourth figure appeared, not so hulking broad as the first three, but every bit as tall.
The newcomer’s wings flared low—no, not wings, a duster. The monster Jilly’s eyes had conjured became just a man.
He paused there, bareheaded against the gusting wind that ran eager fingers through his shoulder-length dark hair. Some glint of neon caught in his eye, flaring violet as he turned toward them.
The newcomer twitched open his duster and withdrew a—a what-the-hell hammer. The haft extended almost too long to be hidden under his coat, even as tall as he was. The blunt business end was as big as her head.
“Now, that’s the murder weapon I was looking for,” she muttered. Too bad it was going to be used to murder her.
The man whirled the hammer in a broad arc. Above the hollow whistle, he shouted, “Jilly, get out of here.”

As the monster trio whirled to face him, he lowered his head and charged.
For a heartbeat, she froze. How had he known her name? Did she know him? She almost recognized the feral grace of him, as if the old comic books she’d once devoured had come to life. Thanks to the crappy alley light, he was cast in black and white and shades of gray—but he was every bit as strong and fearless and take-charge as the heroes of her fantasies.
Right, like she was going to rely on anyone else to fight her battles ever again.

She dodged to one side of the alley. She’d seen a glint beside the neatly stacked boxes—right there. Yes! Someone had forgotten a box cutter.
She scrabbled at the cardboard, fingers closing around the narrow metal, sliding the tiny razor tooth out in the same motion. She spun back to the fight.
despite her speedy weapons procurement, Thor already stood, legs braced, over one carcass. With another swing of his hammer, he dispatched the second creature. He knocked its mandibled head right off its shoulders like a meaty croquet ball. Jilly’s stomach heaved at the wet thud of the head thwacking into the brick wall.
The last monster—obviously smarter than Jilly herself—ran.

The man whirled, every line of his body poised to pursue. Jilly’s breath caught hard, this time in pure pleasure at the taut, precise flow of his moves. He seemed so familiar, like something she’d dreamed. Maybe as she’d fallen asleep in the middle of one of those gawd-awful CGed action movies.
The monster-head stump oozed a black scum, and she swallowed hard at the blunt reminder; this hammer-wielding superhero was no faker.

Question of the Day: Since Jessa's excerpt is about a monster ... As a child, were you ever afraid of a monster in your closet or some other inappropriate place? For me, I was terrified of ... wait for it ... a shark in my swimming pool. I know, I know-- crazy, right? But I wouldn't go in the water alone until I was seventeen. I guess I figured if there were two of us, the crazed, bloodthirsty shark that lived in my backyard pool would eat the other person first ... I must have seen Jaws at far too early an age ... Leave a comment for a chance to win Seduced by Shadows.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Winner Day #1 Lauren Dane

The winner from Lauren Dane's blog for Ava Gray is Crystal GB, so contact Lauren with your information to claim your prize. My winner will be posted at Lauren's blog, so check over there to see if you won. She has Vivian Arend guesting today, so don't forget to enter her contest as well!

Take You To Another World Contest Day #2: Karen Erickson

As I've mentioned on this blog before, I met Karen at my very first RWA conference when neither of us knew anyone. We'd both just decided to give romance writing a try and thought we'd try out this whole critique partner thing. Well, here we are a few years later-- and I couldn't be more thrilled. Karen is a wonderful writer, a terrific person and a great person, so help me welcome her to Love Musings! Today, she's giving away a copy of her January book, Tangled and talking about Under my Umbrella, which comes out today :)
Rain, rain, go away. That’s Jenna’s mantra as she suffers through yet another rain-soaked walk home from work. At least the tight butt of the guy walking in front of her offers some distraction. When he turns around and asks to share her umbrella, she realizes his front view is as smokin’ as the back. What better way to get up close and personal with the object of her ogling?

Brett noticed his hot little neighbor weeks ago, but until now hadn’t worked up the nerve—or found the opportunity—to approach her. Too many hours at the fire station has left him longing for something more out of life. Like the company of a sweet, sexy woman. Maybe, if he’s lucky, kindling a relationship.

Jenna surprises herself again when she offers to let him dry off in her apartment. One minute he’s toweling off his hair, the next their chemistry explodes in the hottest sex either of them have ever experienced. And suddenly they’re both wondering if he’s the match to her tinder, or if it’s too much, too fast…
Brett stood the moment he saw Jenna enter the restaurant, taking a few short steps to reach her since he waited in the lobby. He took her hands, unable to stop from planting a soft kiss to her upturned lips, and she smiled when they parted.
“Glad to see you too, stranger,” she murmured.
The area was packed with people waiting for a table since the restaurant had been open only a few short months and seemed popular. One of his buddies at the station had told him about the place, raved on how good the food was. A steakhouse that also specialized in seafood, he figured it covered a broad range to satisfy both himself and Jenna.
“You look…” His voice trailed off as he eyed her up and down. Her hair was loose, silky brown waves tumbled just past her shoulders, and she wore some sort of clingy black dress that did amazing things to her already bangin’ body.
“I look what?” she teased, her hazel eyes sparkling. She curled her arm around his, and he led her over to lean against the wall together while they waited.
“Beautiful.” Hot, sexy and completely fuckable.
But Brett didn’t want this to be just about sex. He liked this woman. Wanted to see if they could take this further.
“Thank you.” Pleasure lit her eyes, and he had the sudden urge to take her out of here. Take her back to his place or hers, strip that sexy dress from her body and touch her. Lick her. Bury himself inside her.
“Have you eaten here before?” Maybe if they talked about food it would distract him. Distract him from her delicious scent, the brownish pink color of her lipstick—the sultry glow in her eyes.
“No, but I’ve heard it’s good.” Her gaze dropped to his mouth, lingered there and he wanted to growl.
“Stop looking at me like that,” he admonished, his entire body tense. His cock throbbed beneath the fly of his jeans.
It was going to be a long night.
“Look at you like what?” Her expression was pure innocence though he spotted the mischief in her eyes.
“Like you want to kiss me,” he whispered close to her ear. A big mistake considering he could inhale her delicious scent, felt the silky soft brush of her hair against his cheek.
“I do want to kiss you,” she whispered back, her hand touching him, resting lightly against his chest. “I want to do a lot of things to you.”
Ah, God. He wasn’t hungry anymore, at least not for food. He wanted to get out of here. Couldn’t stand the thought of making small talk and pretending to have an appetite during what would end up being a two hour dinner.
More like two hours of torture. A torture he didn’t want to put himself through.
“You’re going to drive me crazy,” he admitted.
Her smile grew. “Then my plan is working.”
“You came here tonight with a plan?”
“Well, not really but just looking at you makes me wanna do…naughty things. To you,” she confessed.
That was it. He couldn’t take it anymore. Hooking his arm tighter around hers he started for the door, taking her with him. “Let’s go.”
“Wait a minute. You don’t want to have dinner?” She sounded truly shocked.
“Not with you looking at me like that and saying those things. Hell no. My apartment isn’t too far from here. Wanna come over?”
“Brett!” She stopped just in front of the doorway, and he stopped as well, wondering at her behavior. “We should at least have dinner first.”
He shrugged. “We’ll order a pizza after.”
She cocked a brow. “After what?”
“You know what.” He waggled his brows in return.
“You’re bad.” She gave a light slap to his shirtfront.
“And you like it.”
“You know it.” Jenna grinned.
“So is that a yes?” He was eager, ready for her to come to his place. His original plan to wine and dine her, get to know her fell by the wayside.
All he could think about was Jenna. Naked and in his arms, lips pliant, her body open and ready for him.
He shuddered in anticipation.
“Yes.” She leaned into him, pressed her soft, curvy body against his and he slid an arm around her shoulders, hauling her close. “I should say no. I should play hard to get.”
“Thank God you’re not,” he muttered as he steered her toward where he parked his freshly fixed pickup.
Jenna glanced up at him, a worried look on her pretty face. “Am I too easy?”
“Hell, no,” he growled. He didn’t want her thinking he found her easy, a quick lay—a woman he could care less about.
Damn it, he liked her. He was going about this all wrong showing it since well, he was treating her like a sex object but he couldn’t help himself. The attraction, the sexual heat between them was too strong to deny.
“I don’t like playing games,” he said after a pause as he led them into a city parking lot. “I’d rather we be honest with each other than you playing coy and me chasing after you. If you want me, you tell me.”
“I want you,” she admitted, her voice low.
Question of the Day: What do you like to do on rainy days? I love curling up on the couch with a good book and a cup of tea and watching as the rain coats my window. Leave a comment for a chance to win Tangled, Karen's January book.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Take You To Another World Contest Day #1: Sherry Thomas

I wanted to start the contest with a bang, so I picked the incredible, inimitable Sherry Thomas to go first. Besides being a very dear friend of mine and an amazing woman, she is also an unbelievable writer, whose books have wracked up Rita noms, Publisher Weekly and Library Journal Best Book of the Year lists, and too many other kudos for me to name here. She's giving away a signed copy of her latest book, His At Night (which I just finished last night-- it is fantastic!)


Elissande Edgerton is a desperate woman, a virtual prisoner in the home of her tyrannical uncle. Only through marriage can she claim the freedom she craves. But how to catch the perfect man?

Lord Vere is used to baiting irresistible traps. As a secret agent for the government, he’s tracked down some of the most devious criminals in London, all the while maintaining his cover as one of Society’s most harmless—and idiotic—bachelors. But nothing can prepare him for the scandal of being ensnared by Elissande.

Forced into a marriage of convenience, Elissande and Vere are each about to discover they’re not the only one with a hidden agenda. With seduction their only weapon against each other—and a dark secret from the past endangering both their lives—can they learn to trust each other even as they surrender to a passion that won’t be denied?


The Marquess of Vere was a man of few words.
This fact, however, would astonish all but a select few of his numerous friends and acquaintances. The general consensus was that Lord Vere talked. And talked. And talked. There was no subject under the sun, however remote or abstruse, upon which he did not eagerly venture an opinion or ten. Indeed, there were times when one could not stop him from pontificating on that newly discovered class of chemical substance known as the Pre-Raphaelites, or the curious culinary habits of the Pygmy tribes of central Sweden.

Lord Vere was also man who held his secrets close.

But anyone so deluded as to voice such a pronouncement would find himself surrounded by ladies and gentlemen on the floor, screaming in laughter. For Lord Vere, according to public opinion, could not distinguish a secret from a hedgehog. Not only was he garrulous, he volunteered the most intimate, most inappropriate personal knowledge at the drop of a hat—or even without a stitch of haberdashery anywhere in sight.

He gladly related his difficulties with the courting of young ladies: he was rejected early and rejected often, despite his stature as a peer of the realm. He gave up without hesitation the state of his finances—though it had been discovered that he was quite without a notion as to how much funds were at his disposal, current and future. He even ventured—not in mixed company, of course—to comment on the size and girth of his masculine endowment: enviable on both counts, the measurements verified by the experiences of the merry widows who looked to him for an occasional tumble in the sheets.

Lord Vere was, in other words, an idiot. Not a raving one, for his sanity was rarely questioned. And not so moronic that he could not see to his daily needs. Rather, he was an amusing idiot, as ignorant and puffed up as a pillow, silly to the extreme, but sweet, harmless, and very well liked among the Upper Ten Thousand for the diversion he provided—and for his inability to remember anything told him that did not affect his meals, his nightly beauty rest, or the pride and joy that resided in his underlinens.

He could not shoot straight; his bullets never met a grouse except by accident. He rarely failed to turn knobs and levers in the wrong direction. And as his gift for wandering into the wrong place at the wrong time was legendary, hardly anyone batted an eyelash to learn that he was an eyewitness to a crime—without having any idea what he’d seen, most assuredly.
Such an extraordinary idiot had he been in the thirteen years since his unfortunate riding accident that no one not privy to his more clandestine activities had ever remarked on his proximity to some of the most sensational criminal cases of the upper crust, shortly before those cases were solved and the culprits brought to justice.

It was an interesting life, to say the least. Sometimes the tiny handful of other agents of the Crown who knew his true role wondered how he felt about playing the idiot for most of his waking hours. They never found out, for he was a man of few words and held his secrets close.
Of course, no secret remains a secret forever…the beginning of the end of Lord Vere’s secret came, quite literally, in an ambush by a young woman of questionable ancestry and equally questionable methods.

A young woman who, in a strange twist of fate, would soon become the Marchioness of Vere, his lady wife.

Today's Question: To win a copy of His at Night-- In honor of summer, what's your favorite vacation spot?

I'll post the winner tomorrow at Lauren Dane's blog! Happy Monday :)

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Let Tracy Wolff/Tessa Adams and Lauren Dane Take You to Another World This Summer!

From June 21, 2010 until July 6, 2010 Tracy Wolff/Tessa Adams and Lauren Dane will be holding a fabulous, two week long party at our blogs! Each day we'll be giving away books and other amazing stuff to people who comment on our blogs. SIXTEEN DAYS of daily contests - with winners at both blogs. Each of us will also be doing a grand prize drawing.

Some of the authors who'll be visiting and giving away fabulous prizes include: Ann Aguirre, Skyler White, Shalya Black, Vivian Arend, Cynthia Eden, Jess Granger, Laura Griffin, Emily McKay, Emma Lang/Beth Williamson, Sylvia Day, HelenKay Dimon, Margaret Rowe/Maggie Robinson, Elisabeth Naughton, Sylvia Day, Juliana Stone, JK Beck, Sherry Thomas, Red Garnier, Robyn DeHart, Karen Erickson, Anya Bast, Michelle Pillow, Shelli Stevens, Beth Kery, Denise Agnew. And of course - Lauren Dane, Tracy Wolff, Tessa Adams and more!

Starting tomorrow, June 21, you'll need to check in here and at Lauren's Blog to read the daily entries and check the winners from the day before.

Rules and other Fine Print stuff: This is how my contest winners will be chosen. Lauren will have her own rules posted at her blog so you'll need to read up there as well.

1. There will be a daily post. The contest to win those books will run from approximately 8 am central time on that day until 8 am the following morning. I will announce my winners each day at a blog post Lauren will post at her blog. Her winners will be posted here. I won't be notifying in any other way so it'll be up to the entrants to check back. All my winners will have seven days to claim the prize or forfeit.

2. Each post will have a question of the day. To be entered to win the daily prize, you must comment on that entry. Each comment made at this blog during the contest will go into the drawing for the Tracy Wolff/Tessa Adams grand prize.
3. I will choose a grand prize winner from all the entries from all the posts at my blog. That winner will be announced on July 5 here at my blog. The Grand Prize is: My entire Tracy Wolff backlist: Full Exposure, Tie Me Down, Tease Me, Naughty Bits, A Christmas Wedding, From Friend to Father and The Christmas Present. I'll also toss in a signed tote bag, a Tracy Wolff book thong and various and sundry other swagadelic stuff.
4. International entries are welcome! If you can read my books in Australia or wherever else, I can most certainly mail them there.
5. All contest winners must be 18 or older.
6. Inappropriate/rude comments will be deleted and entry into the contest will be voided.
7. This contest is intended for readers only: please do not post to sweepstakes sites. If this contest is posted to sweepstakes sites, I reserve the right to end my part of the contest immediately and void the remainder of the prizes.
8. Continue to spread the word about the contest-- and Lauren's and my books. Each post you make about the contest on: a blog, twitter, facebook, your website, goodreads, etc.) entitles you to an extra entry into the Tracy Wolff/Tessa Adams Grand Prize Drawing. You can e-mail the link to to get the extra entries or post at the end of this blog entry.

Thanks so much for stopping by! I appreciate the interest and can't wait to start the party tomorrow morning :)