Friday, March 30, 2012

Angels vs Demons Blog Hop

Welcome to the Angels vs Demons Blog Hop!

In celebration of Leia Shaw and Carrie Ann Ryan's new paranormal romance releases in June and July, we're hosting an angel and demon themed blog hop! Leia's book, Destiny Bewitched, features a sexy as hell (pun intended) demon named Geo, and Carrie's, Dust of My Wings, hero is an angel named Shade.

We want to know which you'd rather have to...uh...cuddle up with at night - angels or demons? And what are your favorite angel or demon books?

Authors and bloggers are welcome to participate. Giveaway must be something book related (but not necessarily angel or demon related).

Please include whether the giveaway is US or International.

Also link back to here or Carrie's blog with the hop graphic. 

Post must go live 12am on June 28th (we will be checking!) and the giveaway should be announced by July 3rd.

An email will go out the week of the hop with further instructions. Thanks for joining!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Slapstick and Sarcasm - what's your favorite kind of humor?

I wouldn’t call myself a comedy writer, but humor plays a big role
in my books. In my life, actually. As a parent of a child with special needs, I often tell people if I wasn’t able to laugh at myself, and sometimes our situation, I’d have slit my wrists a long time ago. Ha ha, just kidding. A little dark humor for ya’. But for me, laughter is that important. It’s even got a healing quality to it. Having a good laugh releases endorphins that give us a bit of a high. Like a natural upper. Many times when I’m feeling down, I’ll say to my husband, “I need a good laugh, do something funny.” To which he blankly stares. Then I roll my eyes and call my best friend.

So what does this have to do with writing? Well, I think for the upcoming generation of readers, humor is essential – even if you write deep, dark, and serious material. We live in an ADD society. The audience for long, flowery narration like Jane Eyre is, for the most part, dwindling. And new readers are picky. If they hit a dull spot, they put down the book. And if they put it down, it’s very hard to get them to pick it back up. This generation moves fast and they want their books to also.

Again, where does writing humor fit into this? Well, one of the things I try to do is, when I have to inundate a reader with a long description or a backstory, I make it funny. That way it entertains the reader as well as giving necessary information without hitting a lull.

Now I’m no expert, and admittedly I didn’t do much (or any) research before writing this post, but in my mind there are several types of humor. Some you’ll be great at, some not. In my opinion, it’s better to use what you got than try to be good at everything. Maybe you already know what suits you best or what comes most naturally to you – if so, awesome and run with it. If not, I’ve listed the types (which I just made up) below along with an example of each. Take a look at what you find most funny then experiment with how to add more of it in your writing.

And I apologize that all the examples of humor are from my books. Number one, it’s my own material so I don’t have to worry about copyright infringement. And number two, I’m lazy.

Dry humor:

Marcelo knew from experience, human women did not like being ordered around by men. His queen had taught him that when she’d tried to kill him only a few months ago. And all because he’d forced her to drink blood and steal the throne from her twisted father. Women were so temperamental.


“Your ego is legendary. It’s like its own entity. No, really. We should name it.”

Dark humor:

“We’re not so different, you and I. You believe your loose morals dictate the right people to kill. I don’t.” With the knife, he cut straight through her shirt. “That’s the only difference between the hunter and the hunted.”

She rolled her eyes. “Is this how you’re going to torture me? Spewing philosophical bullshit? I prefer the knife.”

Silly humor:

“So? You made a good choice for once in your life,” James said. “Good on ya’. What do you want? A cookie?”

Maddox grunted. “She wants an apology, dumbass.”

She narrowed her eyes. “Now I want two apologies.” Folding her arms across her chest she added, “And a cookie.”

Visual humor:

When he crouched down into a fighter’s stance, he looked like a sexy tiger ready to pounce. When Sage did it, she looked like she was sitting sideways on an invisible toilet.


“You’re a bossy little thing.”
“Me bossy? Ha! That’s funny coming from you.”
“Down here there’s a name for a creature that taunts a bigger one.”
“What’s that?”

Pop Culture humor:

“Thanks for that, boy genius. Where’d you graduate from? Hogwarts School for the Mentally Unbalanced?”


It had only been six days since she’d frozen in fear when the werewolves had attacked her and Marcelo. What a long way she’d come since then. Now…now she would have faced them with courage instead of cowering behind a man. Her head would be held high, bow in hand, strength down to her feet rooted on the ground. Yes, she was fae. She would never run and hide again.

Just then a giant snarling ball of muscle, fur, and teeth lunged at her from the trees. Oh, the irony.

Physical humor:

The next stall over is decent but cramped. It’ll have to do. I lift my dress and begin the process of liberating my curves from the torture device called Spanx. I grab the waistband and yank. And yank and yank. Down, down my body. At my hips, I reach some resistance. I wriggle them back and forth but the stall is so narrow I knock into the walls. I widen my stance, hovering above the toilet. Balancing on my too small heels proves challenging. I grunt and curse under my breath. Sweat drips down my nose. But I am going to get these damn things off if it’s the last thing I do.

Taking a more aggressive approach, I shove my hands under the waistband around my hips and pull down as hard as I can. Then I hear a loud rip and freeze. I look down. The lacy red underwear Nick got me is torn through at the side.

“Shit!” I hiss. “Shit, shit, shit.”

The sound of a throat clearing comes from the stall next to me. Double shit! Someone walked in between my grunts and thumping about? It probably sounds like I’m giving birth in here.

Witty humor:

Uhh…I don’t really specialize in this. I mainly use low brow and crass.

So. What’s your favorite type of humor to read and to write? Do you have examples you’d like to share? Leave a comment below and we can all laugh at you…er, with you

Monday, March 26, 2012

18+ Blog Hop Winner!

Thank you everyone who entered the 18+ Blog Hop this weekend! I can't believe how many of you stopped by. I hope you enjoyed the sexy excerpt on my blog and everyone else's. It was a fun hop, wasn't it?

And for those of you that downloaded For the Love of Harmony, I hope you enjoy reading it and might consider buying my other books.

The winner of the hop is...

Linda Henderson

Thanks Linda and I'll be in touch!

For everyone else, if you'd like to pick up a copy of Destiny Unchained (the book that the excerpt was posted from) it's only $2.99 on amazon and all other e-readers! Here's the amazon and B&N link.



Sunday, March 25, 2012

Small Treasures Blog Hop Winner!

Thanks everyone who entered the Small Treasures Blog Hop!

The Winner of my 3rd book, Destiny Unchained is...


I'll be in touch soon with your book.

I have lots of other blog hops going on in the coming months with great prizes so be sure to come back!

Six Sentence Sunday

From the 2nd book in my paranormal romance series, Destiny United.

The air was hot and sticky for June in northern New York. Marcelo had spent several months in the area in 2004 hunting down a rogue demon that had been wreaking havoc across the state. The demon had somehow managed to set every New Yorker’s ring tone to What’s New Pussy Cat? by Tom Jones. The suicide rate that year had been exceptionally high.

Wanna see what sexy vampire Marcelo is doing in New York? Destiny United is available now for only $2.99 for all e-readers!

Click on the cover to the right to get it on amazon or check out my website on the left to read the first couple chapters.

Friday, March 23, 2012

LIVE CHAT!!! (About Kinky Sex...and more)

Cari Silverwood (co-author or 31 Flavors) and I are doing a LIVE CHAT tonight at 8pm CST!!!

We'll be answering questions about our true story BDSM romance, 31 Flavors, on sale on amazon for a limited time as it's being contracted with Loose ID publishing. This is the last chance you'll have to buy it before it's re-released a few months from now with a new title and cover.

If you haven't heard of 31 Flavors yet, it's a heartwarming, sexy, and very funny true story about a married couple discovering BDSM and kink for the first time.

Women have written me saying how much they could relate to it, how they laughed till they cried, and how they cried at the tender moments. It's truly a remarkable book and I'm proud to be a part of it.

Anyway, here's the link to the chat. Pleeeease come or Cari and I will get bored and bad things will happen. Come with questions or just observe our craziness. I'd love to see a good turn out so invite your friends too.

Welcome to the Guilty Pleasures Chat roll! We will have occasional chats with authors, book discussions, vent, motivate and just for fun!!!CARI SILVERWOOD and LEIA SHAW will be chatting live, Friday, 3/23/12,8:00 PM, CST.Chat for WebsitesThank you for stopping by Guilty Pleasures

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

18+ Book Blogger Giveaway Hop!!!(Caution: Content is HOT!!!)

I'm so excited for this blog hop! Why? Because it's the perfect reason to post a super sexy excerpt AND because...

everyone is a winner!

That's right. Everyone who visits gets a FREE short paranormal romance novella called, For the Love of Harmony (erotic content and light bondage). Here's the link. Enjoy!

I'm also giving away a grand prize of a $15 gift certificate to Amazon or B&N to one winner (international). Just fill out the Rafflecopter form below.

And now for the fun part. Sexy excerpt from my newest paranormal romance, Destiny Unchained!

Blurb:  They call her The Huntress. A vampire with lethal focus, Natalia hunts rogue werewolves and kills them without mercy. She buried her heart centuries ago. Now she lives only for revenge. But when she’s forced to team up with the alpha of the northwest werewolf pack to catch a werewolf serial killer, her carefully controlled world is shattered by the passionate Cristian. Will Natalia accept Cristian’s claim on her heart even if it means sacrificing a part of who she is?

***Warning: content not suitable for readers under the age of 18***

She opened her mouth to call for Cristian. But something that felt like a bus rammed into her, toppling her to the ground. For the second time, the air rushed out of her lungs and she struggled to breathe. The beast was heavy on top of her, but took care not to crush her. His powerful arms thrust hers over head, pinning her to the ground. Even with five-inch-long nails, he was careful not to hurt her. His chest heaved, blood dripped from a bite mark on his neck. With every ragged breath, a snarl escaped his throat and blew the hair from her face. When she struggled, he growled quietly in warning.

His gaze roved her over rapidly. Her eyes, her lips, her neck, down to her breasts, back to her eyes again.

She could have killed him. Probably. Maybe. But she didn’t want to kill him, she wanted to calm him. In an ultimate act of trust, she yielded. Her body sagged underneath him, her pride stinging a bit. And, in the wolf way, she turned her head and bared her throat. Male satisfaction burned in his eyes before he leaned into her neck with his nose and inhaled.

His savage moan tickled her skin. Then his body contorted. It melted on top of hers, fur disappearing, and half its mass. In only seconds, a human took its place. A naked human.

She tried to pull her arms down but he gripped them harder. “Be still, Talia,” he said, his voice husky like gravel. “Don’t move.” His face warmed the crook of her neck. “I could hear your pain from miles away. Do you know what that does to a man?” She couldn’t speak, only lay there under his heaving body. “My Natalia, hurt and afraid.”

She opened her mouth to deny that last part, but he bit her chin.

Lifting his head, he stared down at her. Calmer, more human now, but still on edge. “Don’t argue, Talia, for once. Please. I have to taste you. Do not deny me this.”

It was a command, but his eyes asked for permission. She nodded.

He pressed her wrists into the snow. “Leave them there.” In a flurry of movement she could barely process, he had her stripped from the waist down. Her lips parted and she exhaled a gasp. Bared in the middle of the snowy mountains and she stilled burned for him. His hands, one of each of her thighs, pressed down, holding them open for his gaze. His groan of approval was so animalistic she shivered all over.

She watched him through half-lidded eyes as he leaned down and blew on her clit. Her hips arched off the ground. He threw both her legs over his shoulders and held her off the snow with her ass in his hands. Her arms, obediently placed over her head, and her shoulders were the only thing touching the snow. Then he feasted on her. Nipping and sucking, licking and teasing.

Her gasps turned into cries for mercy. Her squirms turned into flails. But he held her tight and steadily went on, bringing her to the edge then slowing, over and over.

When her clit burned and throbbed and she couldn’t take anymore, she pleaded, “Cristian, please!”

One more long decadent lick then he flipped her to her hands and knees, nudging her thighs apart with his. He entered her too slowly and she pushed back into him. His soft chuckle vibrated through her body. His hand snaked forward and grabbed her breast. As he thrust in and out, he pinched and tortured her nipples, and she moaned in delight. His thrusts grew harder and his hand moved down to her swollen clit.

“Ahhh…yes!” she cried. He teased her clit lightly and her pleasure grew to an intensity she’d never experienced.

“Oh, God, Natalia. You’re perfect,” he panted, driving into her over and over. Just when she was about to climax, he leaned over her and bit into her shoulder, pinning her while he finished inside her. “Mine.”

Yours. The sharp pain of the bite shot straight to her clit and she screamed. She was immobile, helpless under his stronger body. It was so carnal, so erotic. And fucking hot as hell.
“Yes!” The world fell apart and the only thing that existed was Cristian. He sent her soaring in pleasure then tumbling and spinning back down to earth. She cried out in ecstasy as he growled and spilled inside her.

Destiny Unchained is available on Amazon, B&N, and all e-book retailers for only $2.99! It's also been on the Amazon bestseller list for fantasy romance for months. Buy it on Amazon!

And don't forget to check out the other stops on this sexy tour!

Lucky Seven

I was tagged by Carrie Ann Ryan for a fun lucky seven post. Here's the rules then my lucky seven.

1. Go to page 77 in your current manuscript
2. Go to line 7
3. Copy down the next seven lines as they are - no cheating
4. Tag 7 other authors (I did it on facebook since I don't follow blogs here)

   Could she be passive in the bedroom? She’d never explored this side of herself but she couldn’t deny a tingle of excitement at the idea of a dominant partner.
   Geo watched her, waiting for confirmation she understood him. It felt a little like he was asking permission. If she did this, there’d be no going back.
    She nodded.


Sunday, March 18, 2012

Six Sentence Sunday

Today's SSS comes from my current WIP, Destiny Bewitched (releases in June). In this scene, Geo and Samantha are about to fight their first battle in a supernatural version of gladiators. Enjoy!

Geo watched the barbaric crowd demand more flesh. Greedy faces all around them – merciless and cruel. They’d just love an encore of the long, painful death that preceded them.

“Give me strength, oh gods, that I might release your fury on these wicked souls,” he whispered then looked down at the small woman beside him.

With her eyes squeezed shut, she added, “And may the force be with us. Amen."

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Winner of the Saint Patty's Day Blog Hop!

Thank you everyone for celebrating the St. Patty's Day Blog Hop with us! It was such a huge success and I'm overwhelmed with the number of entrants I got! But there can only be one winner.

But remember all my books are priced at $2.99 and under on all major e-book retailer sites and in print on Amazon and Createspace. So if you didn't the win the gift card today, I hope you'll consider checking out one of my books anyway!

The winner is:


Congrats Krysycat! I'll be in touch!

Come back next week everyone for the 18 & over Blog Hop and giveaway on the 22nd where I'll be giving away my racy erotic novel, 31 Flavors!

And Happy Saint Patrick's Day! 

Friday, March 16, 2012

Small Treasures Blog Hop!

A little over a year ago I finished my first novel, Destiny Divided. I made a half-assed attempt at getting traditionally published but was shot down by all the agents I queried. I had some small press interest but then I heard about self-publishing.

There's this little (and by that I mean big) paranormal erotic romance author named Tina Folsom. A year ago, I took a chance emailing her, hoping she'd tell me about her experience with self-publishing - since she was the most successful self-published author I knew of at the time. I was pleasantly surprised when she emailed me back that same night. She gave me all the facts, told me about her experience, encouraged me to go for it, and even sent me tips on getting started promoting my work.

It hasn't been an easy road - or a perfectly smooth one - but here I am, a year later with all three books in my paranormal series on amazon bestseller lists.

When I set out to start a writing career, I had one goal - to make enough money to send my daughter to Montessori school (we live in a horrible school district). I am happy to report that I have gone above and beyond that goal in the first year. And my daughter starts school in the fall.

I can't predict what would've happened had I made it with an agent and sold to a big publisher. Or if I had even signed with a small publisher. I'm not the type of person who looks back. I only know I'm happy with my decision now and continue to look forward to more success in the future.

So, while Tina Folsom may not remember my name - or that she even emailed me with the advice so many months ago - she has inadvertently helped shape my career.

If you're reading this, Tina, thank you!

For the contest I'm giving away an e-copy of my 3rd book, Destiny Unchained, in my paranormal series. To enter just make sure you're following my blog and leave a comment with your email address below. Open to US and International readers.

Blurb for Destiny Unchained:

They call her The Huntress. A vampire with lethal focus, Natalia hunts rogue werewolves and kills them without mercy. She buried her heart centuries ago. Now she lives only for revenge. But when she’s forced to team up with the alpha of the northwest werewolf pack to catch a werewolf serial killer, her carefully controlled world is shattered by the passionate Cristian. Will Natalia accept Cristian’s claim on her heart even if it means sacrificing a part of who she is?

Don't forget to visit the other blogs in the hop and discover more great independent authors!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

St. Patty's Day Blog Hop!!!

Lá Fhéile Pádraig Sona Daoibh!

Happy Saint Patrick's Day!

No, I'm not Irish and, yes, I googled that.

Last blog hop I gave away an e-copy of my book, Destiny United, that featured an Irish fae. This time I'll let you choose your own book (it'll be mine, right? RIGHT?) with an Amazon or B&N gift card for $10 (open US and Internationally).

Today I'm going to talk about pinching. Yes, pinching. Why, you ask? Because I'm weird.

When I asked the host of the hop, Carrie Ann Ryan, what the blog post should be about she gave me a list of suggestions: St. Patty's day, wearing green, beer, traditions, pinching...

I'm not Irish. I'm Swedish, my husband's Italian, and my kids are Puerto Rican (figure that one out). So I'm unfamiliar with the traditions. When she suggested pinching, well, I thought she was being weird.

I looked up St. Patrick's Day and pinching and found this explanation:

"Forgot to wear green on St. Patty’s Day? Don’t be surprised if you get pinched. No surprise, it’s an entirely American tradition that probably started in the early 1700s. St. Patrick’s revelers thought wearing green made one invisible to leprechauns, fairy creatures who would pinch anyone they could see (anyone not wearing green). People began pinching those who didn’t wear green as a reminder that leprechauns would sneak up and pinch green-abstainers." 

How did I not know this?

Well, I'll tell you one thing, I fully intend to take advantage of this new information today on my family, friends, random strangers on the street...I don't care if you're wearing green or not. No one is safe from my fingers. If someone looks at me funny (or threatens bodily harm), I'll just give them an innocent look and say "the leprechaun did it."

Now that we've gotten the mandatory blog post out of the way, here's an excerpt from my newest PNR release, Destiny Unchained.

Blurb:  They call her The Huntress. A vampire with lethal focus, Natalia hunts rogue werewolves and kills them without mercy. She buried her heart centuries ago. Now she lives only for revenge. But when she’s forced to team up with the alpha of the northwest werewolf pack to catch a werewolf serial killer, her carefully controlled world is shattered by the passionate Cristian. Will Natalia accept Cristian’s claim on her heart even if it means sacrificing a part of who she is?

“How can you stand it?” Natalia asked, her nose scrunched in disgust. “It doesn’t smell anything like Chinese food.” The offending odor was called General Tsao’s chicken. It was unlikely General Tso Tsung-tang of the Qing dynasty had favored – or even eaten – fried chicken soaked in sickeningly sweet-smelling syrup. Take-out Chinese food was one of the many atrocities that made her glad to be a vampire. It was right up there with tanning beds and sagging breasts.

“And how would you know what real Chinese food smells like?” Cristian asked, popping a piece of chicken in his mouth.

They sat at the small table in the motel room, the six o’clock news filling the background as they half paid attention for clues. Sleep that day had been oddly refreshing, especially considering she’d shared a bed with a werewolf. Not to mention he was a blanket hog. “I spent a few years in the Kunlan Mountains during the seventeenth century. I know what real Chinese food smells like.” She opened one of the cookie packages and sniffed it. “What do they make these out of? Cardboard?”

He grabbed the cookie from her hand. “Miniature life lessons.”

“They make them out of miniature life lessons?”

A deep chuckle rumbled in his chest. “No, you’re likely right about the cardboard. But it’s what’s inside that’s important.” After he broke the cookie apart, he regarded the fortune thoughtfully.

“Well? What’s it say?”

His brows furrowed. “A handsome blonde will enter your life bearing words of wisdom and a big –”


He looked at her. “Not what I was going to say.”

She tried, unsuccessfully, to smother a smile. “Give me that.” She snatched the paper from his hand and read it.

Love is for the lucky and the brave.

“So,” Cristian said, waggling his eyebrows, “feeling lucky?”

She chuckled, wadded up the piece of paper, and threw it at him. He beamed, likely proud he made her laugh. Gods only knew why he was obsessed with it.

“Luck I get,” she said when they’d sat in silence once more. “But why brave?”

He shifted in his seat then sat forward, his gaze piercing through her. “Because, Natalia, love is a risk. Love from the depths of your soul requires a certain amount of sacrifice. It bids you to give yourself wholly to another. To allow someone to view you like a prism, assessing you at every angle, examining every flaw. You must lay yourself before them, open and bare, and say, ‘here I am. I hold nothing back. I am yours, mind, body, and soul.’ And all you can do is hope they don’t crush you.” He leaned closer. “But the man who truly loves you will tend to your heart like he tends a garden, nurturing it until it grows and blooms under his hand.”
She was on the edge of her seat, her gaze locked on him. Finally, she tore away and fiddled with her hands. 

Clearing her throat, she forced herself to say, “Well said, Romeo.”


Now remember this book and all the rest of mine are only $2.99 on all e-readers!

Comment with your email address below and make sure you're following my blog and I'll announce the winner tomorrow! Thanks for stopping by and don't forget to check out the other blogs in the hop by clicking on the link to the left.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Winner of Feeling Lucky Blog Hop!

Thanks everyone who read the excerpt of Destiny United, my Irish fae themed giveaway! There can only be one winner but (now here comes the cheesy game show host line), you can ALL be winners because Destiny United is only $2.51 on Amazon right now (and $2.99 everywhere else).

The winner is...


Thanks everyone for the follows and comments! Come back this Thursday for another blog hop and giveaway. Check out the left hand column for even more. I'm on a roll. Must be the freshness of spring. Or something.

Link to Destiny United on Amazon

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Feeling Lucky Blog Hop!

Welcome to the Paranormal G-spot!

In honor of St. Patrick's Day, I have a giveaway of a paranormal romance that features an Irish fae heroine and part of the book takes place in Ireland. See that tie in? It's a good one, right?

Below is an excerpt from the book, Destiny United. The heroine, Aila, meets ups with a fae prince who wants to win her heart, except she's unexplainable smitten with an overbearing, overprotective vampire, Marcelo.

Check out my other books at the link to the right or at my website for the first couple chapters of each.

*This giveaway is for one e-book copy of Destiny United. It is open for international readers.

Kieran, in all his fae glory, strolled towards her, hands in the pockets of his khaki linen pants. The billowy button down shirt combined with his flowing slacks made him look like he belonged on the beach of some exotic Caribbean resort, not stalking a fae in the Colorado Rockies. Oh, but he was just as yummy as the last time she’d seen him.

Another immortal male who always looked like he just stepped out of a Calvin Klein advertisement no matter the circumstances? It just wasn’t fair.

He smiled when he spotted her, but as he grew closer his smile faded. Just a few feet away his gaze locked onto her neck. She’d forgotten about the bite mark. Her fingers grazed it self-consciously.

“I’ll kill him,” he said in a dark voice that rivaled Marcelo’s. His black look was a stark contrast to the charming, crooked smile a moment ago. “Just say the word.”

“No. I’m okay.” She forced her hands away from the wound. “I already shot him in the throat.”

Two blonde eyebrows shot up in a look of surprise. “Really?”

She nodded.

“Well, remind me never to get on your bad side.”

She gave him a half-hearted smile.

“So, do you like my gift?”

“Yes, thank you.”

His eyes flickered from her face to the bow still slung over her back. “Can you wield it?”

With a proud smirk she positioned it in her hands. “You tell me.”

Aila had never been the over-confident type, but since becoming fae, that immortal arrogance began rearing its big, ugly head. Besides, why should I be humble about something I’m truly good at? It wasn’t as if she’d ever been good at anything before.

So she might have been showing off a bit when she pointed to a small spot of lichen growing on the bark of a tree half a football field away. The fact that she could even see the thing was amazing in itself. Drawing an arrow from the quiver, she placed it on the bow, pulled the string back, and let loose, smiling at the hum of the arrow piercing through the air. The sound alone was gratifying, but when the arrow sunk into the lichen indicating a perfect shot, she stepped back in satisfaction.

 Kieran smiled. “Very good. You're becoming a right fae warrior.” With one big step he was at her side, close enough for her to feel the heat radiating off his body.

At first glance he looked tall and lean. But up close, she could see the contours of his muscles under his shirt. Different from Marcelo, who was all brawn; this was a perfectly honed athlete.

“I have another gift.” He reached into his backpack and pulled out a small brown leather strap. “It’s an arm guard.” He held out his hand. Meaning for her to do what?

She stared at it.

With another one of those heart-breaking smiles, he said, “Give me your arm. I won’t bite.”

Tentatively she placed her hand in his.

“Typical American,” he said with a tsk and a smirk. “So mistrustful.”

She wanted to point to her neck as proof of her hesitancy, but the reminder only made her heart hurt. He held her wrist gently and inspected the inside of her forearm. His touch felt like electricity. Marcelo’s touch was gruff, but grounding – safe and secure. But Kieran’s was like a buzz, shooting sparks across her skin. Lightly he smoothed a finger over the welts on her arm. The bow string had snapped against it a few times, forming red stripes on her tender skin.

“Many archers wear an arm guard to protect against this,” he said, then strapped the leather on. She couldn’t stop a small smile forming on her lips. Now she looked like a real kick-ass fae archer. Kieran held her arm a little longer than necessary, adding an uncomfortable awkwardness to the air. She searched for a distraction.

“Hey, what happened to your accent?” she asked. She exhaled a tense breath when he released her.

“I’m sorry, I may have misled you. I don’t really have an accent. I’ve lived in America the past eighteen years. I thought that if I sounded like an Irish fae, you’d trust me easier.”

“Well, I did,” she admitted, making a mental note to be more careful. “What are you doing in America?”

He gave her a weighted glare. “Looking for you.”


He kept his head tipped up in that regal way. “Yes. We’re to be married.”

What? Her shock must have been clear on her face because Kieran burst out laughing. It was so light and carefree she almost laughed with him. Only it wasn’t funny. Arranged marriage? Not for this full-blooded American chick!

“You should see your face!” he said.

She gave him her fiercest scowl.

He cleared his throat and reined in the last of the chuckles. “Don’t look so frightened. I’ve been in America long enough to respect democracy and free will.” With a sardonic smile he added, “I watch Jersey Shore and eat Twinkies with the best of them.” Then he winked.

At once her scowl disappeared. He’s absolutely adorable.

“I won’t be forcing you into anything you don’t want for yourself.”

She wrinkled her nose. “Umm…thanks?”

He chuckled with a superior air that reminded her of Marcelo. “Will you come with me to Méadú ar Neart, the Unseelie fae kingdom?”

She felt a wave of heartache at leaving Marcelo behind, but she was here to meet her destiny. No more hiding in fear. She took a deep breath and nodded. Kieran’s grin was a satisfying reward.

It all happened in a matter of seconds. He held out a metal device and the air in front of them began to change, rippling in the hazy shape of a doorway. Before she could question him, he grabbed her hand and pulled her through, a shocking sensation that left her cold and shivering.

Then she was standing in a patch of green grass, surrounded by rock outcroppings. The sun arched high in the sky but a warm breeze tickled her skin. She shielded her eyes from the blinding sun and looked up at Kieran, her face twisted in confusion. He was still holding her hand.

His smile comforted her. “I’m sorry,” he said. “It was easier to show you than to explain.”

“W-what the hell was that?” she whispered as she pulled away.

He held out the device to show her. It was dark metal in a roundish shape the same size as his palm covered with strange etchings. “Ostium Invenire. A Door Maker. It creates shortcuts between places. Like wormholes. A sorcerer who aligned with us commissioned it. As I’m sure you’ve heard, the Unseelie fae have been hunted for centuries. We had to resort to finding any means of defense we can.” He looked down at the device. “Including ones that give us a quick getaway.” Then he shoved it in his pocket.

She gazed at the view around them. Behind her green rolling hills continued as far as she could see. Purple and yellow wildflowers dotted the grassy knolls. It was all so perfectly quaint, like a photo straight out of a coffee table book. She half-expected a herd of sheep to come strolling by.

A steep incline of cliffs towered over them leading to the top of a small mountain. Since she couldn’t see any signs of a fae kingdom, castle, or even a road leading there, she hoped Kieran’s plan didn’t involve climbing over the mountain.

“Where are we?” she asked.

“The home of your ancestors.” His lips quirked as he stared down at her. “Ireland.”

Then the rock before them started to rumble. The cliffs shook and tiny pebbles plunged to the ground below. Aila stepped back as the rock split apart, sliding into the rest of the mountain like a pocket door. Behind the shifting rock a dirt road appeared. And far off in the distance, the Unseelie fae kingdom glistened in the sun. The fortress was a vision of strength, mimicking the cliff face, dwarfing the city below.

“H-how?” she asked, stunned almost speechless.

“Magic, lass.” His mouth curved into a sexy smile. “It’s good to be fae.”

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Friday, March 2, 2012

A Today Show and 50 Shades Response

There’s this little book series, you might have heard of it, called Fifty Shades of Grey, and it’s making big waves in the romance world – and beyond. There’s a lot of controversy surrounding it. As you might be figuring by now, I’m attracted to controversy.

50 Shades started off as Twilight fan fiction then released as an erotic story that has crossed over to gain readers of all genres. It features a young college student, Anastasia, and her rapid but intense relationship with a young CEO with a traumatic childhood and a fondness for whipping women in his
“Red Room of Pain” (i.e. BDSM playroom).

Women who read a lot of BDSM are up in arms because they say 50 Shades has portrayed BDSM as a bad thing a person should heal from instead of an acceptable lifestyle if practiced safely. But if you take a look at the Goodreads reviews you’ll see most people love the books.

In fact, it got so much attention that the Today Show did a special on it. Apparently 50 Shades is the newest trend to hit the Upper East Side of Manhattan. Women are talking about the haunted billionaire and his dark fetish.

Opinions abound on this subject. “Experts” weigh in on whether BDSM, specifically sadomasochism, is healthy. Long gone are the days of S&M being considered a mental illness, or so I thought.  In fact, it’s been proven there is not a higher rate of trauma among those who practice BDSM than in the general population. Yet the “expert” on the Today show regarded the books as encouraging violence against women. Which is not only extremely ignorant but who on earth would call a man who’s never read the books in question an expert on the subject, or on women’s sexuality, in the first place? Just because it says Doctor in front of his name and he has his own show doesn’t mean he’s smart. I think Dr. Phil proved that one.

But I digress.

I’ve read the three book series and I enjoyed it very much. Does it portray BDSM as a dark and unhealthy need? A little. Could that be true for some people? Absolutely. It’s all a matter of perspective. Is a glass of wine bad for the majority of the population? No. Is it for an alcoholic? You see what I mean. Something healthy for one person could be unhealthy for another. There are plenty of erotic books that shed a positive light on BDSM, why not write about the other side?

What I find ironic – and irritatingly inconsistent – is how authors go on about censorship regarding taboo subjects most of the population finds horrifying yet I don’t know how many times I’ve heard the words, “EL James shouldn’t write….blah, blah,blah (elitist mumbo-jumbo).”  Isn’t that that the same as censorship? We silence each other by discrediting work we don’t agree with yet claim we’re anti-censorship. Seems hypocritical to me.

Back to the Today special. You’re all are dying to know what I think about it, right? Right? Too bad. I’m telling you anyway.

Women are talking about sex.  How is that a bad thing? What’s a beautiful gift we’ve been given as a human race has been made shameful, and anything that deviates from what we’ve been raised to accept as the norm is misunderstood at best. But now they are discussing not only sex, but kinky sex! Fantasies they may have thought crazy or weird are being brought out into the open and discussed freely. And how much do you want to bet that this is affecting them in the bedroom too? I think it’s fabulous.

I’m not advocating shouting your top ten favorite positions from the rooftops, but if women in private book clubs are opening up to each other, learning from each other, supporting one another because of this series…well…I tip my hat to EL James.

Link to the news segment

Thursday, March 1, 2012

31 FLAVORS Blog Tour Kick Off!

Cari Silverwood and I will be all over the net this month talking about 31 Flavors, our new BDSM contemporary romance. We have giveaways, interviews, and guest posts galore!

First stop is today at Close Encounters with the Night Kind!

...with an excerpt, a giveaway, and a character interview so go check it out! It's lots of fun, I promise.