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Cover Reveal: Duty and Desire by Elise de Sallier

 

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PRESENTS. . .

A Cover Reveal for

Duty and Desire

Book 2 of The Hearts of Honour Series

by Elise de Sallier

Duty-&-Desire-Hi-Res-Cover

Release Date: June 18 , 2015

~~SUMMARY~~

Grace Daniels, the village of Hartley’s resident midwife and herbalist, would like nothing more than to ease the suffering of Jonathan Loring’s young son, Peter. But the widowed Blackthorn estate manager is as prejudiced againstDuty&Desire-3D-Paperback-eReader her illegitimacy as he is her “witchy” profession. When Peter’s physicians say they can do no more for the boy, Jonathan finds himself in the unenviable position of having to turn to the woman whose skills he has scorned.

Drawn together out of duty, Jonathan and Grace’s relationship soon becomes characterised by a not-so-hidden desire. Having found a degree of independence unheard of for a lady, Grace has no intention of submitting to the bonds of matrimony. Not that Jonathan, who has lost his inheritance and has to work for a living, is in any position to propose.

With marriage out of the question, their only option is both shocking and dangerous . . . to become lovers.

~~EXCERPT~~

Accord

Grace Daniels pulled her cloak tightly around her shoulders. The blustery wind tugged strands of her long, black hair free from her bun, intent on using them to whip her face. To add insult to injury, the misty rain—which she could have borne quite easily—was now falling in heavy splats. Several icy drips had worked their way through her worn, woollen wrap, sending shivers down her spine.

What joy.

As the midwife and herbalist for the village of Hartley, Grace traipsed around the countryside in all sorts of weather, but that didn’t mean it wasn’t a trial. She really should have taken up William, the viscount Blackthorn, on his offer to supply her with a horse-drawn chaise. How she would find time to care for a horse was beyond her. There were so few hours left in her day already, certainly not enough for a decent night’s sleep on the rare occasion she wasn’t called out to assist with a birth or an emergency. If the viscount knew the reason for her reluctance, he would probably offer to pay for a stable boy to assist her. But Grace didn’t like to feel beholden—not even to her best friend’s husband—although it was somewhat unavoidable, considering he now funded her work.

Startled by a horse’s whinny, she looked over her shoulder to see—as if conjured from her imagination—just the sort of hooded chaise William had suggested would be suitable for her needs. Unfortunately, the driver was more likely to appear in her nightmares than her daydreams.

Duty-&-Desire-3D-Paperback-1 Jonathan Loring, retired military officer and the Blackthorn Viscountcy’s new estate manager.

“Get in. You can ride with me the rest of the way up to the manor.”

Grace bristled at her unwelcome rescuer’s tone even as the wind tugged at the ribbons of her bonnet. Personable in appearance, with golden hair and a close-trimmed beard, Mr Loring was already well-respected by the local populace, though he had a knack for rubbing Grace the wrong way. If she were a cat, she would have hissed.

“Don’t dawdle, Miss Daniels,” he added in his typically autocratic manner. “There’s no point getting any wetter than you already are, unless you enjoy impersonating a drowned rat?”

Grace narrowed her eyes. She would have given a great deal to be able to turn her back on the obnoxious man and keep walking, but a not-so-distant clap of thunder heralded a strengthening in the storm. If only she hadn’t misread the weather.

“Oh, very well,” she muttered, clambering aboard with little of the attribute for which she was named evident in either movement or demeanour. To make matters worse, the bench seat was barely wide enough to accommodate them both. Leaving a respectable distance between them simply wasn’t possible, as she was forced to squeeze into the narrow space between the sidewall and Mr Loring’s immovable thigh. Thankfully, he made no comment about her damp skirt pressing against him, merely jerked his chin towards the prancing bay gelding.

“I’m sorry I couldn’t climb down to assist you, but Ned’s hard to handle in this weather.”

After placing her bag next to her feet, Grace gave him a withering glance. “That would have been unnecessary, as I am quite capable of getting into a vehicle unaided. It also would have been unwise, as it’s plain to see you need to keep both hands on the reins lest your horse bolt. I’ve no desire to be bowled over and left facedown in the mud.”

“Neither do I, which is why I wasn’t fool enough to attempt the manoeuvre.” Mr Loring huffed a breath while urging his horse to trot up the steep, muddy road that led to Blackthorn Manor. “I was merely trying to explain my less-than-gentlemanly behaviour.”

“Since we both know I’m not a lady, the gesture would have been wasted. Unless you’re trying to convince me you would show the same courtesy to your average, run-of-the-mill servant?”

“If a woman needed my help, then I would render assistance regardless of her station,” he replied, biting off each word as if displaying the early signs of lockjaw.

While the man was as irritating as a prickle in one’s shoe, Grace couldn’t deny she received an inordinate amount of pleasure from goading him.

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~~ABOUT THE AUTHOR~~

A great believer in living happily ever after, Elise began her lifelong obsession with the romance and paranormal genres when she was far too young to be reading either. After more than thirty years of marriage to her very own romantic hero, she now knows great relationships don’t just happen, they take work . . . which doesn’t mean writing about them can’t be a whole lot of fun!Elise

While raising a family, Elise established a career as a counsellor and family therapist. Seeking an escape from the stresses of her work, she discovered the world of fan fiction, and her timid writer’s muse made its voice heard. After 2.3 million hits, 20,000 reviews, and an e-mail from an acquisitions editor at The Writer’s Coffee Shop Publishing House, her life found a new and fascinating direction.

Elise likes to see her characters grow, experience passion and adventure, tackle some difficult issues, and find lasting love . . . eventually.

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~~OTHER TITLES IN THE SERIES~~

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Praise for Passion and Propriety, Hearts of Honour, Book 1

“I cannot recommend this author, or her book, highly enough to anyone who is a fan of Regency romance or who would like to dabble in the genre to see if it’s for them, because believe me, after reading this you would definitely be a convert!” Lily Loves Indie

“This is probably one of my favorite historical romances I have read this year.” Jen, Red Hot Books

“I’ll definitely be picking up more books by this author and can’t wait for the next instalment of this series which stars Hannah’s friend, Grace.”Amy Alvis, Historical Romance Lover

“I loved it. That could be my entire review, right there. But I need to gush a bit more. A wounded hero. A woman with a backbone and caring heart. A bit of angst as I wonder if they will overcome the obstacles that stand in their way of true love…. The flow of the story was natural, not rushed, and I enjoyed every page. I’m very happy to hear that there will be more in Ms. de Sallier’s Hearts of Honour series. I want the next one now!” Kathie, First Page to the Last Book Reviews

“This is the third book I’ve read by this author and I couldn’t help falling in love with de Sallier’s characters once again. I was completely taken into the story not just by Hannah and William, but by the secondary characters at the same time… If you enjoy Regency Romance, you will love Passion & Propriety.” Lindsey Gray, Author on Author Book Reviews

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Cover Reveal: Koven by Vanessa Skye

 

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PRESENTS. . .

Paranormal Romance

Koven

by Vanessa Skye

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Release Date: June 11 , 2015

~~SUMMARY~~

When Celeste was kidnapped a century ago and turned against her will by a cruel vampire fighter, she expected to spend her doomed eternity as his slave, chained in the darkness, and she questioned her ability to survive. But things don’t always go as expected.

Just ask her kidnapper.

He never expected Celeste to learn how to fight.

He never expected Celeste to become the best warrior he had ever seen.

He never expected the secret hidden away in her blood,

And he certainly never expected to become a victim of his own sword.

Tormented by her past and the dreams she can’t explain, Celeste now roams the earth slaying the creatures she loathes—other vampires like herself—and seeking revenge against those who would harm innocents in the name of bloodlust.Kove-3D-Paperback-eReader

Until she crosses paths with Striker, the handsome vampire leader weighed down by his own tortured story.

In his quest for answers about the stunning Celeste, Striker finds out more than he ever thought possible—about himself, his true origins, and his destiny. But the secret Celeste is keeping from him might be the one thing that keeps them apart for good—a secret even more dangerous than a new, powerful enemy they never saw coming.

As ancient mysteries, forgotten prophecies, and cruel eras collide, Celeste must confront her past as well as her future. Fighting her inner demons and letting Striker beyond the wall she built around her heart haunts her, even more than her captive past.

Enter a supernatural world of passion, lust, sexual obsession, and power that the unsuspecting humans never knew existed, until now . . .

 

~~EXCERPT~~

The vampire silently watched from a balcony near the top of a shiny glass-covered skyscraper, enthralled, as the assassin neatly dispatched three Lore with brutal efficiency.

Two of the three had been beheaded before they’d even known what was happening.

Impressive, really—hard as it is to sneak up on a vampire, let alone deprive one of its head.

Granted, the three Lore rogues had looked young and inebriated—no doubt fresh from snacking on some of the drug-addled humans wandering around the club district in the very early hours of the morning. The chemical-or alcohol-laced blood of high humans was a favorite pastime of the younger generations of vampires, many of whom were reticent to leave human vices behind after their turning.

The third vampire looked shocked and tried to run as his friends met their absolute death, but the assassin was faster—considerably so. The Lore was killed quickly, neatly, and efficiently, without undue blood or relish.

He narrowed his dark brown eyes as he surveyed the assassin’s graceful movements.

The vampire didn’t kill for the thrill, which often happened because psychopaths were common within their species. No, given the calm efficiency, the assassin killed for some other reason that he couldn’t yet fathom.

He had hidden far enough away that the low clicking of his compact digital camera couldn’t be heard.

He zoomed in and refocused, the shutter softly snapping open and closed as the assassin wiped a bloody sword on one of the unfortunate vampire’s clothing before sheathing it.

He stuck around long enough to ensure all Lore—vampires turned by another vampire—had disintegrated into dust. The cold, late-winter wind whistling through the city would eventually scatter their remains across several gray city blocks. He was grateful they hadn’t been hybrids. They left a mess when killed, and a cleaning crew would have been necessary to dispose of the remains before any humans stumbled across them.

Koven-3D-Paperback-1Pressing a few buttons, he examined the camera’s small screen critically. The leathers covering the assassin from head to toe made any facial features unidentifiable in each of the shots, but they were tight enough to leave no doubt.

A female assassin?

He was surprised and a little excited. Female vampires were increasingly rare, let alone one who fought as well as she did.

The wind moaning between the high-rise and its tall neighbor wasn’t enough to muffle the soft thud of footfalls from his sharp ears. He didn’t turn, however, because the intruder’s scent was familiar.

“Striker, are you following her again?” Bradford, Striker’s second-in-command, asked.

Striker reluctantly pulled his gaze away from the camera’s screen and turned slowly. “Yes. What of it?”

Bradford raised an eyebrow. “Surely you’ve got enough evidence against her to report to Kouncil by now. Why the extra surveillance?”

Striker folded his arms and remained silent.

Bradford ran his hands through his wavy red hair before shrugging his heavily muscled shoulders. “I’m aware it’s not my job to question—”

“You got that right.”

“Just wondering if you can afford the extra time. Kovens don’t run themselves, you know.”

Striker shrugged, slipping the camera into the pocket of his leather jacket. “I find her . . . fascinating.”

Bradford snorted. “Don’t let your never-ending drive for pussy cloud your judgment. The executioner’s noose is over her head, and you know it. Kouncil wants blood. She risks exposing us all with her activities.”

“You should see how she fights. She’s quick, effective . . . deadly,” Striker said, waving toward the female, who was scooping up empty clothes and placing them in a nearby dumpster. “And she’s cleaning up after herself, as you can plainly see. She poses no threat to us. On the contrary, she could be useful.”

Bradford stared at the woman, wrinkling his fair, white brow. “How old do you think she is?”

“She is too fast to be a hybrid. She doesn’t appear to be able to fly yet, so Lore less than a century old is my guess.”

“Less than a century?” Bradford narrowed his ruddy-colored eyes. “Good. She should be easy to capture and destroy, then.”

Striker clenched his fists. “Do not be so quick to destroy that which you don’t understand, brother. She could be a valuable asset.”

Bradford scoffed. “There is no way Kouncil will ever allow a female to join Koven. Nor will they forgive her for such . . . unseemly pursuits.”

“As much as they might like to think otherwise, it’s not up to Kouncil. It’s up to me who joins my Koven. Besides, fifty years ago they said the same thing about the hybrids, and now they are becoming members of our ranks as fast as they mature.”

Bradford let out a single bark of laughter. “Yes, you went against their wishes and allowed hybrids into Koven, and Kouncil is still pissed off about it! Because of you, they were forced to relax the ban on human and vampire relations, as well as the half-breeds sometimes resulting from them. All to boost our ranks. Vampire numbers are dwindling lower than ever before, and you know from personal experience that the turnings don’t always take, particularly for wome—” Bradford glanced at Striker and winced but pushed past the awkward moment quickly. “Don’t mistake their tolerance of hybrids after centuries of culling them with acceptance. They cannot stand the mongrels. They still call them Tiks, for fuck’s sake! They move about the sunlight without any discernable loss of strength, unlike Kouncil themselves.” Bradford shook his head. “It would be unwise to anger them so soon after a significant loss of face. They’ll never join the rest of us in the twenty-first century. They’re marred too deep in the old ways and prejudices. I often wonder why we sacrifice our strongest vampires to protect them. Would we be so much worse off if we let nature take its course?”

Striker shrugged. “My maker used to ask me the same thing, and I honestly have no good answer. Tradition, maybe? Koven has been the right hand of Kouncil for millennia. But they’ll join us in modern society if I have to drag them kicking and screaming myself. You’ll see.”

Bradford huffed and cut his gaze sideways at Striker, clearly irritated. “Sadly, brother, I think you will see, and when you do, you won’t like it.” Running for the edge of the high-rise, he jumped, disappearing into the dark sky.

Striker turned back to his contemplation of the female.

He noticed she had returned everything to it pre-slaughter state, and resolving to follow her, he launched himself into the sky and flew above as she darted on foot through city alleys and quiet streets. He tracked her easily and hoped she would lead him to her keeper. It would allow his men to find her much easier later, should he wish to arrest her.

His mind raced.

Kouncil had sent him specifically to identify and gather evidence against the lone assassin killing rogue vampires—Lore and hybrid alike—indiscriminately and without permission. His instructions had not included rescue or engagement.

But something about her . . .

 

 

~~ABOUT THE AUTHOR~~

vskye

Vanessa Skye has always had a love of words and spent her school years writing poetry, speeches, and fictional essays.

After completing a Bachelor of Arts in print journalism and studying psychology at Charles Sturt University, Vanessa got a job at Rural Press—Australia’s largest publisher of regional and agricultural news and information—where she worked as a journalist in the Central West of New South Wales for four years.

Thousands of stories later, Vanessa decided to move back to Sydney and try her hand at public relations while studying for her master’s in communication.

Skip forward a few years, and Vanessa once again found herself joyfully studying various psychology subjects while managing a Sydney public relations firm. Enthralled with examining the motivations behind people’s actions, Vanessa realized what she really wanted to do in life was combine her love of words with her fascination for human behavior. So Ms. Skye quit public relations to begin the significantly more impoverished life of a professional writer.

Inspired by a recurring dream, Vanessa wrote her crime fiction debut, The Enemy Inside, which challenges the concept of justice, asks if the need for vengeance sometimes justifies murder, and explores whether you can ever heal from childhood abuse. The second book in this series, Broken, was released in February 2014, and the third, Bloodlines, was released in January of 2015. The first book in a paranormal series, Koven, will be released in June 2015. In her spare time, Vanessa wrote a short story, The Piece, which was published in February 2012 by Dark Prints Press as a part of the One That Got Away dark fiction anthology.

Vanessa now works as a freelance writer, lives on Sydney’s northern beaches, and tries to immerse herself in salt water at least once a day.

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Cover Reveal: Reckoning by Lorenz Font

 

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PRESENTS. . .

A Cover Reveal for

Reckoning

Book 4 of The Gates Legacy Series

by Lorenz Font

Reckoning-Low-Res-Cover

Release Date: June 4 , 2015

~~SUMMARY~~

The vampires of New York City are breathing easier after the demise of the tyrannical former head of the Vampire Council, Goran. Under Rohnert, the revered and newly ascended leader, their future looks promising. However, an unknown enemy is manipulating events, killing humans and vampires alike, and exposing their secrets to the human world.

This is bad news for new vampire Cyrus and his band of fighters at Tack Enterprises. Events derail his plans to find Zane, the sadistic vampire who tortured Cyrus and forced immortality on him. Armed with hatred deep in his bones, all Cyrus cares about is getting even, and Zane has it coming. Cyrus soon finds himself torn between the crippling desire for revenge and his responsibility to his friends. When he begins to spend time in the company of the beautiful and pureblooded vampire, Isidora, her presence in his life makes him rethink his priorities.Reckoning-3D-Bookstack

Isidora is able to read minds. The thoughts she hears from the respected and irresistible vampire, Cyrus, are filled with both anger towards Zane and a deep admiration for her. Being closeted all her life, Issy has no idea what to do in the face of the outside world’s war, death, and challenges. One thing is clear. She craves Cyrus, but his need for vengeance is clouding his mind. After discovering a previously hidden family member and being called to serve the Council, Issy is at a crossroads in her life and struggles to find the right path.

Both vampires face tough choices. Should Issy pursue her feelings for Cyrus or wait until he can return her affection? Will Cyrus deny his attraction to Isidora so he can kill the man who made his life a living hell on earth? Every decision leads to a reckoning.

 

~~EXCERPT~~

With Isidora in his arms, Cyrus found comfort from the torture of his nightmares and his past. The warmth of her touch and the sweetness of her kisses made him think of nothing but the present and the desire he had long denied.

Cyrus had no idea how to take things between them. He had given her rough sex because he had been a jealous ass. If he’d been thinking clearly, he wouldn’t have done it. Yet he had given in to the intense need to possess her. Maybe, if he took things slow and started from the beginning, he could make do with the little kisses and touching. However, the tenting inside his pants was a cause for concern. It didn’t take long for her to notice.

Reckoning-3D-Paperback-eReaderIssy broke their kiss and smiled up at him. She had that gleam in her eyes, the kind that told him she knew what he was thinking. He rotated his hips, trying to create room between their bodies, but she refused to let him go.

“This is a good time to see if we can work things out.”

“Damn it,” Cyrus muttered. Was he ready? The answer was out of his hands. With the massive wood he was sporting, even a long dip in an icebox wouldn’t chill him out. His body needed Issy, and there was no doubt she wanted him, too.

“Cy, you can take charge of everything. We’ll go at your pace and on your terms. I’m here to enjoy the ride.”

This made him smile. “Even if the ride is bumpy?”

“As long as I’m with you.” She tightened her arms around his waist. “I don’t care how rough, how easy—just take me with you.”

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~~ABOUT THE AUTHOR~~

LORENZ_PROFILE_PIC

Lorenz Font discovered her love of writing after reading a celebrated novel that inspired one idea after another. She is currently enjoying the buzz from her vampire novels Hunted, Tormented and Ascension, Books 1-3 of The Gates Legacy Series, Feather Light, an erotic romance, Indivisble Line, a romance thriller and Pieces of Broken Time, a military romance.

Lorenz’s perfect day consists of writing and lounging on her garage couch, aka the office, with a glass of her favorite cabernet while listening to her ever-growing music collection. She enjoys dabbling in different genres, with an intense focus on angst and the redemption of flawed characters. Her fascination with romantic twists is a mainstay in all her stories.

Lorenz lives in California with her husband, children, and two demanding dogs. She divides her time between her full-time job and her busy writing schedule.

 

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Cover Reveal: Over The Edge, by Suzanne Carroll

 

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PRESENTS. . .

OVER THE EDGE

by Suzanne Carroll

Over-the-Edge-Hi-Res-Cover

New Cover Reveal/Re-Release Date: February 26 , 2015

Genre: FICTION / Romance / Contemporary / Contemporary Women

ISBN e-book: 978-1-61213-136-8

Available from: Amazon, Kobo, Barnes and Noble, and TWCS PH

~~SUMMARY~~

In six weeks, Zoe Harper will marry Dan Costi in an over-the-top Sydney society wedding, complete with fire-eaters and belly dancers. But when she receives an unexpected gift from her future mother-in-law, Zoe realises she’s making a huge mistake. In a blazing sidewalk argument, she breaks up with her fiancé—and his mother, who has joined the fight via conference call.

Following the advice of friends and co-workers, along with some inspiration from late-night-television self-help guru Dr. Pam, Zoe sets out to find the life she thinks she should be living. Always a planner, she makes a list of goals: travel, career, tattoos, and no romantic entanglements. It’s all carefully laid out, until she meets Angus Creed.Over-the-Edge-3D-Full-Cover-Paperback-2

Angus is supposed to lead the opening waltz at a charity ball in New York City. Only problem is the handsome billionaire construction magnate with the tabloid past can’t dance. Not one step.

Tainted by gossip and with a well-publicised failed engagement behind him, Angus has become a master at keeping an emotional distance. Until he meets Zoe.

What starts as dancing lessons slowly becomes something more. Angus begins to let down his guard and open his heart, even when his past makes an unexpected and unwelcome return. As Zoe discovers the real man behind the headlines, she questions where her new choices are taking her. Her goals look good on paper, but are they what she really wants? And by the time she realizes where her heart lies, will it be too late?

 

~~EXCERPT~~

Guitar music starts filtering through just as I’m drifting back to sleep. It’s a lovely sound, soft and gentle. It rises and falls so evenly, almost in time with my breathing, and I could listen to it forever. Except, I’m supposed to be alone in this cabin, so that means there shouldn’t be guitar music.

Shit.

My eyes snap open.

Did I leave a radio on? Is there even a radio here? What if it’s an axe murderer? Are they usually musical?

The music keeps playing as I climb slowly out of bed and, thankfully, the room doesn’t spin quite so much this time. The door is open a crack, and when I peek into the living room, my hangover evaporates and my heart starts crashing against my ribs.

There is a man sitting on the sofa.

Who the fuck is he? And what did I do last night? My stomach drops to my toes.

Whoever he is, he’s made himself at home. His bare feet are resting on the edge of the coffee table. There’s a blanket thrown over the arm of the sofa. Across his lap he holds a guitar. He’s frowning, lips pursed slightly, as he studies the movement of his long fingers over the strings. His body moves subtly in time with his music. The muscles in his forearm roll and flex as he plays.

Despite the shock of finding him here, I’m struck by the beauty of his pose. The way he holds the guitar is almost tender. His face is so intent, he’s so absorbed in what he’s doing. And what he’s doing is beautiful. The music is so rich and sweet.

Over-the-Edge-3D-Bookstack-1His hair is dark and tousled, and it hangs over his forehead and into his eyes. I would guess he’s about my age, perhaps a little older.
He doesn’t look like an axe murderer. Maybe this is some ridiculous mix up with reservations. Should I confront him? Or climb out the bedroom window and run for help? As I’m considering my options, he looks up.

“Hello,” he says. “You’re awake.” He offers me a smile that’s warm and wary, but it’s his eyes that really have my attention. He has beautiful eyes. Long-lashed and dark brown. He blinks slowly, almost lazily. My unease begins to fade.

I find myself being drawn into the room – one tentative step, then another. Those eyes stay on me, gauging my reaction.

“I’m not sure how much you recall,” he says. His voice is warm and mellow. “Should I introduce myself again?”

“That would be a good idea, yes.” Despite a wildly beating heart, my voice is surprisingly calm. Calmer than the voice in my head, the one yelling at me to move away from the stranger who has appeared uninvited in my cabin. Away. Not closer.

Guitar Man unfolds himself from the sofa. He’s tall. Much taller than he appeared when he was sitting. He smiles and offers me his hand.

“Hello,” he says again. “I’m Angus Creed.”

It could be the shock of what Guitar Man has said, or it could be the hangover, but suddenly my head is spinning again and the floor is coming up to meet me.

“Hey…”

I’m suddenly weightless as he scoops me into his arms and eases me onto the sofa. He crouches on the floor in front of me as I sag into the corner cushions and I stare into those dark, guarded eyes with the long lashes. This is Angus Creed?

What the fuck is he doing here? I’m guessing the holiday brochure on Susan’s desk wasn’t for her, after all.

“Are you okay?”

“I’m fine.” I start to nod but stop quickly, wincing.

“Headache?”
“Um…a bit.” It’s an effort to think straight and I close my eyes, but when I feel his hand on my forehead they snap open again.

This is surreal. I should be asking him to leave, not gazing into his eyes as he strokes his fingers over my forehead.

There’s a roughness to his skin, no doubt from those years spent as a builder, not a businessman. But even so, his touch is gentle and soothing, like his music. A delicious sense of warmth flows through me.

The pounding in my head begins to ease. I sink deeper into the sofa and might never get up again. But my mouth is dry and I run my tongue over my lips.

“I’ll get you some water,” he says. Suddenly his hand is gone, but the warmth stays. There are sounds from the kitchen: the creak of a cupboard door and the splash of water into a glass.Over-the-Edge-3D-Full-Cover-Paperback-1

I wrestle myself into a sitting position and catch my reflection in the glass doors. My hair is flat. That means I must have worn my beanie at some stage. But when? Not in front of him, I hope.

I turn my head and see he’s walking across the room to me, his bare feet moving silently over the timber floor. He holds out the glass and I nod at the blanket tossed over the armrest. “You were here all night?”

“You asked me to stay.”

Shit. Mr One Night Stand. What have I done? The horror must show on my face.

“No,” he shakes his head, “not like that.”

And of course his response means he knows exactly where my mind has gone. Quick. Backtrack.

“Oh. Good. I mean…not that I thought…you and me, that we…”

Oh, what am I saying? And why is he looking like that, listening so intently? Just shut up, Zoe. Shut up and drink the water.

But it’s too late. The image is in my head now. It’s probably in his head too. At least I look fabulous and acrobatic in my version of events. I wonder if I’m hungover with flat hair in his.

Guitar Man…Angus…Mr Creed…stays still by the fireplace. He watches me and I watch him. There’s the faint shadow of a bruise on the cheekbone under his left eye.

When I’ve had enough to drink, I set the glass on the coffee table. “Thank you,” I murmur.

“How are you feeling now?”

“Better after the water. I needed that.” It’s true, my head is a bit clearer but the events of last night still elude me. I need him to explain exactly what happened. I also need to find out what I’ve told him. Did I tell him my name? Does he know I work for his company? That I’m the Zoe Harper who sent his reports off yesterday morning? I don’t think so, because I’m quite certain he wouldn’t be here, like this.

My heart pounds. I’m not sure how to play this, but I find myself wishing he’d stroke my forehead again.

 

~~ABOUT THE AUTHOR~~

suzanne carroll

 

Suzanne lives in Sydney with her husband and children. By day she works in an office where she sneakily scribbles plot ideas on yellow sticky notes and hopes they don’t accidentally end up on the departmental monthly report.

One such sticky note has turned into her first novel, Over the Edge.

 

 

 

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Cover Reveal: Matronly Duties, by Melissa Kendall

 

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PRESENTS. . .

Matronly Duties

by Melissa Kendall

Matronly-Duties-Hi-Res-Cover

Release Date: May 21 , 2015

~~SUMMARY~~

Hundreds of years after an asteroid slammed into Earth and sent it into a new ice age, what remains of the human race lives on in underground sanctuaries. Now, as the bicentennial anniversary of the impact approaches, a new leader prepares to take her place at the head of the government. At least, that’s what she thinks.

Bethanie Greene’s life has been planned out for her since the age of thirteen. Beautiful and intelligent, she’s spent the Matronly-Duties-3D-Paperback-eReaderlast twelve years training to become the next Matron of the underground nation of Oceania. But when Bethanie is kidnapped by rogue extremists just six weeks shy of taking office, her world is turned upside down by the handsome stranger who rescues her.

Howard James’ life has been the polar opposite of Bethanie’s. Struggling to survive in a world where those in power wished he didn’t exist, he harbors a deep-seated resentment of the government and all its representatives. Together with his unconventional family, he shows Bethanie a life she never knew was possible, while at the same time, opening her eyes to the injustices of the government she is meant to lead.

But can she trust a stranger? And can a few days change everything she believes and desires? Against all odds, Bethanie must decide if her heart and her duties can coexist.

 

~~EXCERPT~~

My body shakes at the thought of what could have happened to me yet again. I’ve heard stories about the slums, and I have to take a few deep breaths to calm myself.

“I was silly running away, I get it. I just couldn’t stay in your home any longer.”

Howard sighs. “Just because my parents raised us with traditionalist values doesn’t mean we are anything like the Trads. You accused us of being a drain on society, but you don’t even know us.”

“You’re right, I don’t. But you don’t know me either. If you did, you would understand why it’s hard for me to understand your way of life. It goes against every law, moral, and convention I’ve been taught. So I can’t be sorry for what I said, even if I’m sorry I ran out of the house.”

Howard takes a deep breath, then exhales long and slow. The expression on his face looks a bit like pity but with a dash of guilt mixed in. “Look, maybe I’ve judged you unfairly based on preconceived notions, but—”

A loud bang echoes outside. Howard glances at me with a panicked look on his face, and then pulls me off the crate onto the floor behind. I sit up, and turn to yell at him, but male voices outside keep my mouth closed. I instead huddle closer to Howard as he puts his hand around my shoulders. He pulls me in until I’m tucked against him.

“Did you see where she went?” a man’s voice asks.

“Nah, she just vanished.” The voice of this one sounds young.

“Damn, the boss isn’t going to be pleased about this.”

The crunch of shoes against pavement indicates they are on the move again. The sounds trail off until they’re no longer audible. I sigh in relief, all the tension fleeing my body.

“Are you okay?’ Howard asks, rubbing my shoulder.Matronly-Duties-3D-Paperback

I glance up, only then noticing how little space is between us. His blue eyes have flecks of grey in them, and there’s a smattering of freckles covering his nose and cheeks. His warm breath tickles my cheek almost like a caress, and his jaw has the barest hint of a five o’clock shadow. He really is captivating.

“I’m fine,” I eventually say, the words a mere whisper.

The butterflies in my stomach return with a vengeance. Howard licks his lips as they turn up ever so slightly in a smile.

“Good.”

I can’t stop the sigh that slips past my own lips. Howard leans forward a little, then moves closer still until his mouth is pressed against mine. I don’t dare move. A zing of something, I’m not sure whether it’s pleasure or fear, shoots through me. His lips are soft and wet, and the sensation is unlike anything I’ve felt before. I can’t even decide if I want him to continue or stop. When he pulls away though, a feeling of disappointment bubbles up inside me.

My first kiss.

Goosebumps cover me from head to toe, and unbidden, my fingers move to my lips. Glancing at Howard, he stares at me for a minute, then moves to sit further away.

“I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have done that.”

I shrug. “It’s okay.”

Howard frowns and then looks across the room.

Part of Matron training is learning not to form close relationships. It doesn’t mean it never happens. I’ve heard the odd story here and there from the other women, and I realise that’s probably what Gail was trying to tell me at breakfast the other day. But in all honesty, I can’t remember the last time I had real physical contact with anyone, above all with a man.

We sit in uncomfortable silence for a few minutes. Tension rolls off Howard in waves.

“What’s wrong?”

“Nothing. Come on,” Howard whispers. “We need to get to the house before those guys come back.”

 

~~ABOUT THE AUTHOR~~

Melissa Kendall

Melissa Kendall is an almost forty-year-old mother of two from Perth, Western Australia, the second-most isolated capital city in the world. Predominantly a stay-at-home mum, she works a few hours a week as a software support consultant. She has always loved to read and write, and spent most of her teens writing poetry and short stories. Over the years, daily life got in the way and she lost the passion for it, but after the birth of her first child, Melissa discovered e-books and her interest in writing rekindled. She is now the author of two published short stories. Matronly Duties is her first full-length novel.

 

~~CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR~~

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Cover Reveal: Beyond The Seduction, by M.A Stacie

 

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PRESENTS. . .

Beyond the Seduction

Book 3 of the Reluctance Series

by M. A. Stacie

Beyond-the-Seduction-Hi-Res-Cover

Release Date: April 23 , 2015

~~SUMMARY~~

For a man who thought he had everything, Trace Jacks sure had nothing now.

After one letter blows his life apart, Trace is clueless how he can move on. He stumbles through the days, never accepting the grief that flows within him, and finding it easier to bury his loss. To him, if he doesn’t think about it, then it never happened. Burying the hurt, he continues with his new life. Hiding from the truth becomes a lot easier after he takes his niece to her dance class, striking up an interesting conversation with her teacher.Beyond-the-Seduction-3D-Paperback-eReader

Shae Bennett is happy to keep things fun, enjoying Trace’s seduction and his spontaneity. She’s reluctant to get serious with anyone; she has enough going on in her life. With him she can forget about her concerns for her mom, her tumultuous relationship with her father, and stress of running the dance studio. With him she can be herself, and it becomes all-consuming.

When the fun begins to slip, when reality starts to encroach in the worst possible way, their relationship unravels at an alarming speed. Neither one is willing to end what they’ve come to need so deeply, but each of them has issues that can only be dealt with alone.

Can Trace and Shae unhook the chains that hold them back? Is their newfound love strong enough to battle back to one another?

 

~~EXCERPT~~

“Shae?” he called out, but his words got lost in the music as he descended the stairs. He didn’t say her name again, because the moment he saw her he was transfixed.

Shae was dancing.

She’d pushed the couch against the far wall, leaving space in the center of the room to move. Instead of yesterday’s clothes, she now wore a pair of tight black shorts and a loose gray tank. Her feet were bare. They hit the floor with a small slap.

Beyond-the-Seduction-3D-PaperbackBeing careful not to disturb her, Trace lowered himself and sat on a stair, still watching her every movement. He doubted she’d hear him even if he did make a noise. Shae was locked in her moment, oblivious to the world around her.

The music was haunting, conveying her sadness, and as she pirouetted, he saw it on her face, too. Shae was crying. He expected it, though the fact that she was doing it while dancing made it harder for him to see. Dancing had bonded Lisbeth and Shae, and now it was all she had left of that. Trace couldn’t bring himself to disturb her.

Her arms swirled, her body swayed, each movement graceful and smooth. She covered the floor in three quick steps, followed by a delicate jump. It amazed him that she kept her poise during the leap, enough to point her toes. When she repeated the move, he watched her fingers this time, and smiled when she pointed those.

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~~ABOUT THE AUTHOR~~

MA StacieM. A. Stacie is never without a book or her eReader. A voracious reader, with a love of sexy yet angst-ridden novels, she adores getting lost in new worlds. Her need to write did not grip her until after her second son was born, when her previous rambles became fully fledged stories.

She describes herself as one huge contradiction, and though not the most conventional of hobbies, she counts getting new tattoos as one of hers. Running keeps her sane, along with knitting and listening to loud music.

M. A. Stacie lives in the UK with her husband and three sons.

 

~~CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR~~

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~~OTHER TITLES IN THE SERIES~~

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Cover Reveal, Pros & Cons by Sydney Logan

Sydney Logan is revealing the cover of her upcoming novel, Pros & Cons! She’s also revealing the video book trailer and offering readers the chance to win an advanced copy of the ebook!


Cover by T.M. Franklin
Book Release: February 21, 2015
Genre: Contemporary Romance/Suspense
Publisher: Mountain Media
 
Con artists Jenna York and Ethan Summers always seem to cross paths during their travels around the world. With their partners in tow, the cunning criminals wreak havoc across the globe, stealing from the rich and giving to the richer. While Jenna tries to convince herself that she sees him as nothing more than a professional rival, Ethan finds it a little harder to fight his attraction to the beautiful thief.When tragedy strikes, Jenna and Ethan join forces, but are the stakes too high? Can they escape this last job with their lives—and their hearts—intact?

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/24445498-pros-cons


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As I slip quietly out of the suite and rush toward the elevator, I can’t deny I’m feeling a little better about Vegas.

 


That is, until the elevator doors open.

 


Standing there, leaning against the stainless steel wall with a cocky smile on his face, is the one person I really didn’t want to see this weekend.

 

 

With a miserable groan, I step inside the elevator and furiously stab the button.

 

 

 

“Are you following me, Summers?”

 

 

“I’d follow your dimples anywhere, York.”

 

 

Ethan Summers is infuriatingly charming and handsome. Both assets have proven to be beneficial to his career and detrimental to mine.

 

 

“Well, these dimples just lifted Bradley Jones’ credit card numbers.”

 

 

“Impressive. Although, one might argue that a more superior con artist would be capable of accomplishing such a feat without showing a little skin. Really, Jenna, I’m disappointed.”

 

 

He rarely calls me by my first name. Last names have always been our thing.

 

 

“Were you watching me?”

 

 

“Every heterosexual man in the casino was watching your little performance. Nice legs, by the way.”

 

 

Crap.

 

 

“Not good,” I mutter.

 

 

“No, but I enjoyed it.”

 

 

Ethan grins as the elevator doors open. I don’t protest when he grabs me by the elbow and leads me toward the nearest exit. It’s not brightly lit, but there’s a very nice bouncer that Ethan greets by name who allows us to walk right out the door and into the starry Nevada night. He doesn’t let go of my arm as we hurry toward a black SUV.

 

 

“Why are you helping me?”

 

 

“You drugged a millionaire and stole his credit card info. I think it’s best we get you out of town.”

 

 

That doesn’t really answer my question, but I can’t argue with his logic.

 

Ethan opens the passenger door and helps me inside.

 

 

“Nice stilettos.”

 

 

I glare at him, and he shoots me a sexy smile before slamming my door.

 

 

It’s really too bad that I hate his guts.

 

 

Ethan Summers and I have crossed paths many times throughout the past couple years. It’s unavoidable, considering we’re two of the finest criminal minds in the world.

 

 

That’s what the news says, anyway.

 

 

“Let me guess,” Ethan says as he pulls the SUV out onto the highway. “You used Rohypnol on Jones?”

 

 

I roll my eyes. “I’m a thief, not a sexual predator.”

 

 

“Well, you obviously slipped something into his drink.”

 

 

“Sleeping pill.”

 

 

Ethan hums his disapproval. I can’t argue with him. Slipping Bradley a sedative is so amateur.

 

 

“I was desperate. The entire weekend has been a complete waste of time. When did the Viper install dome cams?”

 

 

“A few weeks ago. The casino’s hosting the U.S. Poker Championship next month. Ceiling cams are a requirement.”

 

 

“Super.”

 

 

“I know.”

 

 

“So, if you knew about the cameras, what were you doing at the casino?”

 

 

“Let’s just say a little birdie told me you were hitting the Viper tonight. I had a feeling you might need my assistance.”

 

 

“So you’ve been talking to Abby.”

 

 

He remains silent and keeps his eyes trained on the freeway, giving me the chance to study his profile. Ethan has a mop of unruly dark hair and deep blue eyes that make most girls go weak in the knees.

 

 

Not this girl. Nope.

 

“Like what you see?”

 

 

My face heats. I hate when he catches me ogling him.

 

 

“You’re an ass.”

 

 

He laughs. “Someday, Jenna, you’re going to stop fighting this attraction between us. I’m really looking forward to that.”
Amazon bestselling author Sydney Logan holds a Master’s degree in Elementary Education. She is the author of three novels – Lessons Learned, Mountain Charm, and Soldier On. Sydney has also penned several short stories and is a contributor to Chicken Soup for the Soul.

A native of East Tennessee, Sydney enjoys playing piano and relaxing on her porch with her wonderful husband and their very spoiled cat.

Visit her website at 
www.sydneylogan.com
. She can also be found on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


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