AuThursday – Diane Zhivago

Please welcome author Diane Zhivago to The Clog Blog.  Diane, tell us a little about yourself and your background?

I’m a Gemini.  I’m also a Canadian.  I live in Newfoundland, Canada in a quaint little seaside town with my husband, our 20-year-old daughter who’s still in college, and our 12-year-old son.  I’m also stepmom to my husband’s eldest daughter and step-grandma to two beautiful little boys, 8 and 6. I’m a veterinary assistant by trade, though I’ve worked at everything from postal delivery to heavy equipment operator for Canadian National Railway.    I’ve been writing stories since childhood. My mother was a lover of books and reading and passed on that love to me, so when I ran out of reading material I would sit down and make up my own stories and then read them to my family or friends. I wrote my very first manuscript when I was about 12 or 13.  It’ was over 400 pages handwritten—a romance story involving a boy I had a crush on at the time and with all of my friends as characters.

How do you make time to write?

At the moment I am not working so I usually write during the day when everyone is at school or work.  I carry around a notebook everywhere I go (like to my son’s football games) so that I can jot down any ideas I have for stories or scenes and conversations that might pop into my head.  

Do you believe in writer’s block?

Definitely!  But I find that the best cure is to just sit and read…get absorbed into a story that’s not your own making.  Us writers usually start out as avid readers and reading really does kickstart your imagination so when the words aren’t flowing, I’ll usually take a break for a day and just read.

Tell us a bit about the genre you write and why you love it?

I write steamy romance.  Mostly paranormal though I don’t consider myself locked into that category.  I do enjoy it though! My favorite books to read are paranormal…vampires, werewolves, ghosts, witches; I love all of it!  And it’s so fun to write! You can really let your imagination soar when you write paranormal. My family is of Irish descent, so I grew up with stories about shapeshifters, witches, fairies and such.  I think that played a huge part in why I love to read and write paranormal romance. And who doesn’t love great sex in a romance book, right? My paranormal romance stories have it all!

How are you publishing your recent book and why?

I have five books published as an Indy author.  I had submitted in the past to a publishing company but the rules and regulations of word length, descriptive language allowances, etc. just made it so hard to get my style of writing to pass all the checkmarks, though I came very close a few times.  As an Indy author, I get to write MY story, MY way, and I like that. I like having the freedom of being an Indy author.  

Are you an Introvert or an Extrovert?  How does this affect your work?

I’m an Introvert mostly…though, being a Gemini I can’t truly lay claim to it wholeheartedly.  I’m very at ease with my own self and my own thoughts. I can live happily inside my head and I don’t really long for the company of the human variety.  In a crowd I’m never at the center of attention—I hate attention—and yet I can work a room if I have to but it’s an act…not the real me. I like watching people, studying them.  I’m good at conversation when I have to be, but I abhor small talk.  

I’m a very private person.  That’s been the hardest part of being a published author.  Talking about myself and my writing isn’t something I’m used to doing and I haven’t figured out a character to be when I’m doing it, so I’m still in my learning curve. 

What is your favorite motivational phrase?

My Grandmother used to always tell me,

“As long as you believe in the faeries, there’s always a possibility you’ll see one someday.”

I think that’s motivated me throughout the years to always look for the wonder and joy in the world…to see the magic in every day.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Don’t give up.  Don’t worry about the critics.  Reviews are only opinions so take them with a grain of salt.  And the most important thing…write the whole story first! Before you fix it.  Before you go back and re-edit that chapter for the tenth time…finish the story!  The mistakes will wait. It’s more important to get the story out of your head and onto the paper first.  You can get lost in editing…write the whole story!

Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

I’m on Facebook,  www.facebook.com/dianezhivagoauthor

My web page is, www.dianezhivago.webnode.com

Twitter: www.twitter.com/dianezhivago

AllAuthor.com: www.dianezhivago.allauthor.com

And you can find me on Amazon under my Author Central profile at www.amazon.com/author/dianezhivago 

Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?

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I’d love to share a little peek of my latest release with you.  Pride & Predator is the fourth book in my Therion Beast series of Paranormal romance.  It’s available on Amazon. The excerpt is from Chapter 2.

Inside, the seedy Montreal bar was a welcome relief from the sleet and snow of the Eastern Canadian winter.  Gregor moved through the bodies of people packed tightly together in the club, his gaze locked onto his target while his companion, Aurora, followed closely behind; her mate, Matthew, waited in the black SUV just outside in the alley behind the dive.

At least Leanna had the sense to take a table far enough away from the crowd of people dancing.  He grimaced, wondering why such meetings had to take place in such unsavory settings. What was wrong with an elegant restaurant as the backdrop for such matters?  He cast a sideways glance at Aurora who was still diligently scanning the crowds, her senses on alert for anything that might indicate a threat. Even as she perused her surroundings, though, he couldn’t help but notice how her body seemed to move to the music blaring from the extra-large speakers on either side of the DJ’s table.  Aurora was young, barely into her twenties. She fit into this crowd with her leather jacket, multiple piercings, and colorful hair. He, however, was decades past his one-hundredth birthday—though still quite young for his kind—not that he actually felt young at the moment. He sighed, his thoughts needing to be put on hold as he approached the table where the middle-aged blonde woman was seated, waiting for him.

Leanna smiled as he took the seat next to her, leaning in to kiss her softly aging cheek.  He introduced Aurora as his niece, though he was certain Leanna knew she was nothing of the kind.  The older woman accepted the presence of the younger woman without question, as he knew she would. Leanna was—along with other things—trustworthy at the least.  She refrained from asking too many questions, another reason why he had reached out to her for this particular job. There were very few humans whom Gregor trusted.  But Leanna was one of them.

Her eyes sparkled as she gazed at him now.  “It is so good to see you, Bastian,” she said, in her careful English, the accent of her Acadian heritage still thick on her tongue.  “You have not changed one bit in the years since we last met. Unlike me.”

Gregor inclined his head.  He knew that she was ribbing him in the way she normally did.  She was aware that he was not human—not exactly human, at least.  But that was as far as her knowledge went.  She had been a young child when he’d first met her.  Lost in the woods where he’d been hunting. He had carried her out, brought her to an area where the men searching could easily find her.  And he’d waited, albeit hidden from their view until she’d been discovered and returned safely to her distraught mother. She had told no one that it had been he who saved her, as he’d asked.  A child who was capable of keeping a secret was a special child indeed, and so Gregor had kept in contact with her, unbeknownst to her family. He had watched her grow into a beautiful woman who was still capable of keeping secrets.  

“I must say, I like this…”

She reached out toward him and stroked the side of his face where the full beard he had worn for decades was now shaved, trimmed, and tightened into a well-formed, goatee that managed to make him look as though he were in his early thirties.  

“You look younger, without the beard.  I suspect you would barely pass for thirty without this.”  She gave the hair at his chin a slight tug, her lips curving suggestively.

Gregor grasped her hand and gently kissed her fingers before placing it meaningfully on the table.  Their time together was in the past. Where it should be. What affair they may have had was long over.

She smiled at him ruefully.  Her gaze drifted over to Aurora.  “Your uncle is a man of singular determination, no?”  She chuckled to herself, not waiting for Aurora to answer.  “Here is the information you were seeking. I assume I will find my bank account has been sufficiently updated?”  She chuckled again.  

Leanna would gladly offer her services for free; Gregor had been the one to insist on payment… especially now that they were no longer involved intimately.  He did not believe in using women. Both parties should gain from the relationship. And so, when their short-lived affair ended, Gregor saw to it that Leanna was well taken care of.  She would always be important to him. A dear friend. He was not a man who took that lightly.    

He looked down at the large brown envelope she was sliding toward him on the table.  He reached for it, extracting the 8 by 10 black and white photograph inside.

“This was taken a few weeks ago in North Sydney, Nova Scotia.  The woman in the picture was going by the name of Eve Radcliff.  She purchased a pass for the ferry to Argentia and was checked in as a passenger in a domestic vehicle.”

Gregor stared at the photo.  In it, the woman was wearing a white baseball-style cap, her long, pure white hair was pulled through the back.  She wore a matching white hoody, dark jeans, and sneakers. Dark glasses hid her eyes from view, but nothing could erase those eyes from where they had burned into his memory.  Electric blue—unnatural, even without any sign of her beast. She looked young, beautiful, and human—the latter of which she was definitely not.

Leanna was looking at him.  “Is she a friend of yours?”  

Gregor pressed his lips together and slid the picture back into the envelope.   “You will mention this to no one,” he said by way of an answer to her question.

“Of course not.”  Leanna was a smart woman.  A man who did not age in the forty-plus years she had known him was not a man one should defy.  She accepted another kiss on her cheek then watched him as he stood. “It was wonderful to see you again, Bastian,” she said, sincerely.

“And you, Leanna.  You will take care of yourself?”

She smiled, her eyes warm if a little misty.  “As always, old friend.” Her gaze followed him as he moved away from her, his niece falling into step just beside him.  

Aurora looked up at Gregor as they walked away, her pierced eyebrow lifted in question.  “Bastian?”

Gregor gave an uncomfortable shrug.  “It is my given name.” He did not like talking about himself.  Ever.

“Bastian Gregor.  That’s your name?”   He heard Aurora give a low whistle.  “You can live with someone all these years and not know a single thing about them.”  She shook her head.

“Gregor Savage, is my name.”  It was his badge of honor as well.  Captain of the Alpha guard, bodyguard to the Alpha.  His name signified his exalted rank within the clan, something he was proud of.

“Wait.”  Aurora’s eyes were narrowing as her brain was busily dissecting this new information.  Gregor had to resist rolling his eyes at her, the young pup was exasperating at times. Had she not been one of his best assassins and a damn good guard, he’d have probably strung her up by her ears long ago.  “Nicolai’s middle name is Sebastian, is he—”

Gregor sighed heavily, knowing she would not stop until she had her answers.  “I am his godfather; his second name was given to honor that.” There. Now she knew.  His connection to the Alaskan Alpha was deeper than mere rank. Which was why failing Nikolai, as he had, was not something he could live with.  The intense need to find the woman in the photograph, Eve Radcliff, was more than a deep sense of duty…it was a matter of deep pride for Gregor. As long as she was free, the knowledge that he had failed his Alpha would eat him up alive.

They left the bar and headed out into the blustery Montreal night, turning onto the street and making their way toward Matthew and in the black Chevy Tahoe.  

“What now?”  Aurora wanted to know, pulling the hood of her jacket up to warm her ears.

“Now you go back to Raven Falls,” he told her, “and I go to Newfoundland.”

“Alone?”

He could hear the doubt in her voice.  “You are needed in Raven Falls, Aurora.  This has nothing to do with you.”

“But you might need me!”  She stopped walking, forcing him to stop as well and turn to her.  He was aware of Matthew’s gaze watching them from inside the SUV. Her sielos draugus mate was rightfully protective of her, though, being only a half-blood Therion, he was strongly outmatched against any of his own kind.  That fact never seemed to enter Matthew’s mind, however, especially when defending Aurora was on the table and, even without an ability to change, he had been proving his inner beast—though unable to manifest—was a powerful one.

“I get it, Gregor,” she was saying to him now, “I understand you think you somehow let Niko down by letting Eve get away.  I feel the same way. I met her first, remember?” She was shaking her head, her moonlight blue gaze beseeching him. “We—none of us—had any idea what she was at the time.  For all we knew, she was an innocent prisoner, like so many of our kind. We had no idea of what she was capable of… what she’d done…”

Gregor found he couldn’t meet her gaze.  What she was saying might have been true for her, but… “She told me she was the one they sent to lure us in… the one they sent to destroy us when they were done…”  even now, saying the words out loud, his stomach twisted with his deep sense of failure. He had been given an opportunity to stop Eve, and he’d let her slip from his grasp… mesmerized by her beauty, even his beast had been unable to do what was necessary.

“We were in the middle of a war!”  Aurora exclaimed. She held a hand up to stave off Matthew when he would have gotten out of the SUV.  “You were in fight-mode, Gregor. Defending your life and the Alpha. She was nothing more than a prisoner trying to escape.  How were any of us to know that she was one of Radcliff’s experiments? That she’d been born and raised in captivity like an animal?”

“She is an abomination!  I should have destroyed her when I had the chance!”

Aurora’s eyes widened at his angry outburst and he felt ashamed at his loss of control.  He was a creature who prided himself on control. “And what of Matthew?” Aurora was asking now, the hurt his word had caused evident in her soft voice.  “He was an experiment of Radcliff’s—while not raised in captivity, he was created there… experimented on all those years without his knowledge or consent.  Is he an abomination too?”

He couldn’t bring himself to respond.  He felt Aurora’s small hand in his and looked down at her.  She was the smallest in their clan in stature only; her bravery and personality seemed too much for such a tiny creature.  Her eyes searched his, probing and earnest. “We are Therion, Gregor. One blood, one race, whether we are all or some, as the sielos draugus whom we cherish and protect… you taught me that, old man.  Perhaps now is the time for you to listen to your teachings—old, wise, and ancient one.”  

Gregor couldn’t help the twitch in his lips that threatened to turn into a smirk as he listened to Aurora’s little speech.  But she was right, of course. Eve was Therion, no matter what Radcliff had managed to do to her. But it was still his responsibility to find her and bring her in.  Therion Law was absolute. Her crimes against her own kind were punishable by death. At the very least, the Dominai sought to learn from Eve… to find out exactly what it was that Radcliff had done to her.  They expected her capture. Planned to glean as much information they possibly could from her. And then she would be destroyed—her dept for her crimes would be paid with her life. 

 

 

Saturday Spotlight – You Were Always Home by C. Lymari

You Were Always Home BannerTitle: You Were Always Home

Author: C. Lymari

Genre: Small Town Contemporary Romance

Release Date: November 7, 2019

Cover Design: Net Hook & Line Design

Goodreads: http://bit.ly/YWAHGR

CLAUDIA LYMARI You Were Always Home ebook FINAL (1)Blurb: 

Jake

They say People change over time. That might be true, but I’ve had people look down at me not once, but twice. Both times, I dusted off my shoulders and carried on. When my fiancée broke things off with me, it wasn’t her voice that I heard. Instead, it was Juliet Dunnett in my head, her snobby tone telling me why I wasn’t good enough. Now she’s back in town. No husband, no ring, looking sad and lonely as ever. I can’t help but want to help her out. Can I get close to her without falling for her again?

Juliet

Coming back to town when I swore people would watch the dust settle after I left wasn’t as humiliating as I thought it would be. Looking for Jake Carson was another story. We were never friends and I was never his girlfriend, but we had something. Something that wasn’t but still was. I didn’t need a new relationship, but I was alone. All my bridges were burned and who would have thought he of all people would be my hero? Could I be near him without letting sins from our past catch up to us?  

Buy Links: Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/34ICo95

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2PPfBnz

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2WKnD2A

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2JSHw2e

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Also Available:

It’s Not Home Without You

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2P0Ww1B

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2BdWifd

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2nTSGw0

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2VOJtRZ

The Way Back Home

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2ITZtx4

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2VKAHo4

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2IQGIdx

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2BiNV1O

YWAH Collage (1)Author Bio:

Claudia lives in the Chicagoland suburbs, and when she’s not busy chasing after her adorable little spawn, she’s fighting with the characters in her head. After not being able to keep up with them, she decided enough was enough and wrote her first novel. C. Lymari writes both sweet and dark romances that will give you all the feels. Her other talents include binge-watching shows on Netflix and eating all kinds of chips.

Social Media Links: 

Newsletter: http://bit.ly/CLYMARINL

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/c.lymari

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/clymari

Reader Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/c.lymaricoffeeshop

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18923664.C_Lymari

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/C-Lymari/e/B07VBNT73R

Giveaway:

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/81aa78942146

 

Cover Reveal – Hidden Kisses by Laura John

Cover Reveal (1)

Title: Hidden Kisses

Series: Love in Sienna #2

Author: Laura John

Release: December 5, 2019

Genre: Contemporary/Sports Romance

Cover Design: Kayla Reese with Destiny Productions

Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/48256029-hidden-kisses

Book CoverBlurb:

Johnny Crown is the man everyone loves to hate. He has his dream job as a pitcher on his favorite baseball team, women falling at his feet, and the attitude to match. Life is perfect…until he meets Leah. Then, for the first time, he wants to change and make himself worthy of her. But after he tells a lie that almost ruins his friend’s life, will Leah even bother giving him a chance?

Leah Gulfson works in a man’s world and has dealt with enough jerks to last a lifetime. After her long-term boyfriend cheats on her, she decides to swear off relationships altogether. All she wants is to have fun and maybe mess around a little. Johnny is the last man she should want to be with. Will she change her mind and let Johnny in?

**Trigger warning***

This book discusses child and domestic abuse, and a small sexual assault scene (not rape) please avoid if these would be hard for you to read

 

In the Series:

Secret Smiles (kindle unlimited)

MyBook: http://mybook.to/SecretSmiles

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2WIs7H8

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/34jCjIC

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/36s95Jo

Amazon AU:  https://amzn.to/2NdLdl8

Author Bio:

Laura John is a contemporary romance author with a love for music. She lives in Alberta, Canada with her husband, two kids, and one loveable fur-baby. She loves karaoke, makeup, and of course a good glass of wine. She mixes her love of words with her love of music and hopes to transport you into a world you don’t want to leave.

Social Media Links:

Amazon: amazon.com/author/laurajohn

Goodreads: www.goodreads.com/author/show/19182589.Laura_John

Facebook: www.facebook.com/authorlauraj

Facebook group: www.facebok.com/lauraslovelyladies

Bookbub: www.bookbub.com/authors/laura-john

Giveaway:

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/81aa78942145

Saturday Spotlight – Be Brave with Me by J.B. Havens &CA Miconi

Be Brave With Me BannerTitle: Be Brave With Me

Series: Finding Love in Green Springs

Authors: J.B. Havens and CA Miconi

Release: October 31, 2019

Genre: Small Town Steamy Romance

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/48632367-be-brave-with-me

3D (1)Blurb:

Welcome to small-town romance—with heat! Introducing the “Finding Love in Green Springs” series, a collaboration between J.B. Havens and CA Miconi. The first book, Be Brave with Me, is set in the small southern town of Green Springs, Mississippi, where the days are hot and the nights are hotter! 

 Meg 

Meg always thought she was strong until tragedy struck—twice. Now she’s alone in the world. For six months, she’s been running from her demons, never staying in one place for long, until she lands in Green Springs, Mississippi.

Drew

Drew was the golden boy of Green Springs, destined for football greatness. After a tragic accident, it all went to hell in an instant, forever changing his life. He clawed his way out of a pit of despair and settled into a comfortable but lonely life. Sparks fly when Meg comes rolling into town. Immediately, he recognizes the pain hiding behind her brash exterior.

Drew wants to help her heal. Meg wants to flee to continue searching for peace. Is she brave enough to stay? Is he brave enough to let her go? 

Buy Links (Kindle Unlimited):

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/34cha2U

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2BU4QIm

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/31ZFUdg

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2MZOKUc

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J.B. Havens Author Bio:

B. Havens grew up in central Pennsylvania. Her love of books started when she was young, reading the Little House on the Prairie books and Goosebumps, and graduated into Laurell K. Hamilton’s Anita Blake series. Her favorite books span the spectrum of genres, everything from Stephen King’s The Stand to Mark Tufo’s Zombie Fallout series and all the way to the romance. She’s a wife and mother of three. When not with her family, she’s writing, researching, or furiously reading on her kindle. She has a serious love affair with iced coffee, a good Philly cheesesteak, and hockey.

J.B. Social Media Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/J.B.Havens/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/havens_b

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jbhavensauthor/

Website: https://jbhavens.wixsite.com/author

CA Miconi Author Bio:

CA Miconi began reading at the age of five and has never stopped. Her childhood was filled with multiple readings of Gone with the Wind, the ultimate tragic romance. CA got her own happily ever after when she married her retired military hero, Gary, in 2010. She began her author services company, Lucky 13, in 2015 as a result of her love of reviewing, sharing, and talking about her favorite books, mostly romantic suspense and stories featuring strong alpha heroes, especially law enforcement and military. CA also hosts and sponsors author and reader events, and never dreamed she’d one day attend as a signing author. When she’s not reading, writing, or working with authors, CA enjoys traveling, spending time with her grandchildren, boating, motorcycling, and cheering on her beloved Baltimore Ravens.

CA Social Media Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CA-Miconi

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ca_miconi 

Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/camiconiauthor/

Website: https://camiconi.weebly.com/

Cover Reveal – Everything’s Better with Lisa by Lucy Eden

Everything's Better With Lisa_cover reveal bannerTitle: Everything’s Better With Lisa

Series: Everything’s Better

Author: Lucy Eden

Release: November 25, 2019

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Cover Design: Maria of Steamy Designs

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/48139328-everything-s-better-with-lisa

Blurb:

When I first noticed Lisa Betancourt, she threatened me with a baseball bat.

To be fair, I deserved it. 

But none of that mattered when I found out I had a baby brother—a brother who is now left to my care. Too bad I don’t know the first thing about parenting. If I have any hope of not ruining this poor kid’s life, I need Lisa’s help. She quickly becomes my salvation, my heart. And even though our timing is all wrong, I can’t help but wonder how I can convince her to stay with me—with us—forever. 

Cole Simmons is just my insensitive jerk of a neighbor.

Or, that’s all he used to be. 

Now he’s in completely over his head, taking care of an adorable child that I’m getting way too attached to way too fast. And the scary part? I’m starting to get attached to Cole, too. After my nasty divorce, I was sure I’d never risk falling in love again—but Cole has me questioning my resolve at every turn. Frankly, I’m starting to wonder if Cole isn’t the only one who is in completely over his head.

 Neither of them was looking for love or a ready-made family. But what will they do when they realize they’ve stumbled head-long into both?

she’s the best thing BOOK COVER EBWL (2)PreOrder:

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2WoEIz2

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2WfKKlk

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2opDXZW

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/32SvAoO

Kobo: http://bit.ly/344jlpe

Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/32PQWmL

iTunes: https://apple.co/2NgKhLB

Read Chapter 3 Today:

https://dl.bookfunnel.com/ce0gxgju0i

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In the Series (Standalone)

Everything’s Better With You

Everything’s Better With Kimberly

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2BOcVyg

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/31QagyO

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2JpzAoW

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2Pm3rlW

Author Bio: 

Lucy Eden is the nom de plume of a romance-obsessed author who writes the kind of romance she loves to read. She’s a sucker for alphas with a soft gooey center, over the top romantic gestures, strong & smart MCs, humor, love at first sight (or pretty damn close), happily ever afters & of course, dirty & steamy love scenes. 

 When Lucy isn’t writing, she’s busy reading—or listening to—every book she can get her hands on— romance or otherwise.

 She lives & loves in New York with her husband, two children, a turtle & a Yorkshire Terrier.

Social Media Links:

Website: lucyeden.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lucyedenauthor/ 

Twitter.com/lucyedenauthor

Instagram.com/lucyedenauthor

Pinterest.com/lucyedenromance

https://www.facebook.com/lucyedenauthor/

https://www.bookbub.com/authors/lucy-eden

https://www.goodreads.com/lucyedenauthor

 

EBWL JS CoverExcerpt:

“Lisa,” he whispered.

“Yes, Cole?” I blinked up at him and took a step closer, his hand still resting on mine.

“I wanna kiss you. Can I kiss you?” he asked.

I giggled causing him to pull away.

I’d never been asked for a kiss before. It was adorable, silly but also somehow incredibly sexy.

“What?” he asked. I could see the look of apprehension on his face.

“Are you as good at seducing as you are at apologizing?” I reached up and stroked his cheek. I was suddenly wide awake. I swore I meant to say kissing but the word seducing came out instead. I would have been happy with a kiss but seduction sounded so much better. I couldn’t remember how long it had been since I’d been seduced.

“I’m very good at seducing.” He scooped me under my thighs and lifted me onto the kitchen island like I was a doll, making his lips more accessible. “I’m a little out of practice.” He swept my hair over my shoulder, exposing my neck, and gently pressing his lips to the soft skin below my ear. I moaned, though I wasn’t sure I meant to and Cole’s body, at least one part of his body, responded. 

“Good,” I sighed. “I’m a little out practice, too.” I wrapped my legs around his waist and pressed my body into his. He was rock hard and I found myself was grinding my hips into his erection. The fact that we were both wearing thin pajamas made me feel every contour of his dick and I was flashing back to my thoughts upon seeing him earlier today pushing the stroller. Why were men with babies so fucking sexy?

 He kissed his way down my neck and gently lowered me onto the countertop until I was fully reclining with my hair hanging over the other side. He lifted the hem of my shirt and pressed his lips into my soft belly and swirled his tongue into and her around my navel. 

His head traveled below my belly button and I gasped.

“Cole, what are you doing?” I asked as his lips traveled to places no one’s lips had been before.

“I told you I wanted to kiss you.” He shot me a mischievous smile and slowly stroked the skin under the elastic of my pajama pants, soothing the indentation marks of the waistband. “I didn’t say where I wanted to kiss you.”

“Oh,” I whispered. “I thought you meant…” I trailed off and tucked my bottom lip between my teeth. He smiled, leaned forward and pressed his lips to mine. Then he planted a kiss on my nose, then my cheek before tenderly sucking my earlobe between his teeth and nibbling. I moaned again. 

“Well, now that you know what I meant, do you want me to stop?” he whispered in my ear. My body was pulsating heat in a current that traveled up and down my arms before settled in place where Cole was eager to visit.

“No,” I half sighed, half moaned while shaking my head, causing his lips to brush the shell of my ear. “Don’t stop.”

“Good.” He let out a soft chuckle and began to make his way down my body, again hooking his fingers into the waistband of my pajamas and my panties, slowly pulling them over my thighs, ghosting a kiss or a lick on every inch of newly revealed flesh. “Because I’m just getting started.”

Giveaway: (run through tour)

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/81aa78942138

Saturday Spotlight – Christmas with the Single Dad by Whitley Cox

Christmas with the Single Dad BannerTitle: Christmas with the Single Dad

Series: The Single Dads of Seattle, Book 5

Author: Whitley Cox

Genre: Single dad/erotic romance/contemporary/Holiday romance/Christmas romance/romantic comedy

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/47504175-christmas-with-the-single-dad

Bookbub: http://bit.ly/33C8iTT

 Blurb:

Will a Christmas love built on lies melt away just as surely as the snow?

 Welcome to Seattle, the Emerald City and home to The Single Dads of Seattle. Ten sexy single fathers who play poker every Saturday night, have each other’s backs, love their children without quarter, and hope to one day find love again.

This is Zak’s story …

Single Dad of Seattle, Zak Eastwood plans to spend Christmas with fellow lonely hearts. His kids are supposed to be at an amusement park with their mom. However, fate has other plans. When a woman from his club finds herself stranded in the snow, he takes her to safety.

Drowning in student loan debt and her father’s medical bills, first-year law associate Aurora Stratford allows herself but one splurge—a pricey membership to Club Z Fitness to watch the gorgeous Zak flex his muscles. Though out of her league, fantasizing about his blue eyes and tattoos is the only thing that keeps her sane these days, especially since her Christmas will be spent alone with her dead cactus and money woes.

When the snowstorm of the century moves in and the hero of her dreams offers her a ride and a place to stay, Aurora’s Christmas begins to look up.

However, Aurora is ashamed of her current financial state—she’s nobody’s charity chase—and her lies of self-preservation begin to take on a life of their own.

Can Aurora spend Christmas with the single dad and win over everyone? Or will her deceit get in the way of not only their happy holiday but her happily ever after?

**Note: This book can be read as a standalone. It includes lots of steamy scenes, cursing, and of course as with all my books, this has an HEA and no cliffhanger or cheating. If you like single dads who take charge, this book is for you.

 Buy Links: kindle unlimited

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2MpqKJy

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2MRkFEK

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2BigWuD

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2IXLAxK

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Praise for the Novel: 5 Star Reviews

“OMG! I so loved this book. Zak and Aurora were amazing.” ~Stephanie Ditmore (Amazon Review)

 “What a story is this book Sexy Zak, with his muscles and tattoos and sexy red hair. This story pulled at my heart both Zak and Aurora have both had hard times for different reasons. Passionate and emotional tale, with so much love to go around this book keeps you turning the page to see how hot and steamy the story has got.~ Mel (Amazon Review)

 This book is everything you could want in a Christmas love story!! Aurora has been lusting after Zak the buff work God at her gym for awhile. Well thanks to Mother Nature she get stuck in the parking lot during a snow storm. Zak comes to the rescue and offers her a ride home. Then you have to just read it because it takes your breath away! This books has laughs and makes you cry but it is so worth it!~ Mrs. Taz (Amazon Review)

SingleDad10Excerpt:

He was about to ask as much when she moved toward him, her pace full of purpose. She grabbed his face and kissed him.

And it wasn’t just a peck on the lips. No, this woman knew how to kiss. She knew how to throw her whole body into it. A low and pleasant hum warmed him from the center outward.

Her soft, slippery little tongue pushed its way into his mouth. Then she started to suck. She started to fucking suck on his tongue. He moaned as his cock stirred beneath the towel, his hands moving to wrap around her back.

This had been so unexpected, and yet he couldn’t get over how much he suddenly wanted it—wanted her.

A shrill beeping sound from downstairs made them both still. She was the first to pull away.

Her light brown eyes were glassy, and her cheeks held an adorable pink flush. He dropped his gaze to her plump, wet lips and he swept his thumb over the bottom one back and forth. He stilled when she pressed the tip of her tongue to his thumb, then parted her lips and lunged at it with her teeth, nipping the pad.

He tugged it away, grinning.

Oh, she was a wicked little thing.

Grabbing her around the back of the neck, he crushed his mouth to hers, taking control of the kiss this time, forcing her lips to part for his, to mold to his. She gave over all the power and melted against him, her arms wrapping around his neck and pulling him down to her. He was about to push the hem of her shirt up to explore her lack of a bra when the loud beeping of the oven timer downstairs had them pulling apart once again.

Her ample chest rose and fell rapidly, his did too.

“Hold that thought,” he murmured, grabbing hold of his towel and heading downstairs toward the kitchen. “Be right back.” Then he took off as fast as his legs could carry him, hoping that his chicken wasn’t burning, but even more so that the woman in his bedroom would still be there when he returned.

 In the series (Kindle Unlimited):

Hired by the Single Dad

Dancing With the Single Dad

Saved by the Single Dad

Living with the Single Dad

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2SyZ2f9

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2XZVkRD

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2GrOXf7

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2YpYHka

Author Bio:

A Canadian West Coast baby born and raised, Whitley is married to her high school sweetheart, and together they have two beautiful daughters and a fluffy dog. She spends her days making food that gets thrown on the floor, vacuuming Cheerios out from under the couch and making sure that the dog food doesn’t end up in the air conditioner. But when nap time comes, and it’s not quite wine o’clock, Whitley sits down, avoids the pile of laundry on the couch, and writes.

A lover of all things decadent; wine, cheese, chocolate and spicy erotic romance, Whitley brings the humorous side of sex, the ridiculous side of relationships and the suspense of everyday life into her stories. With single dads, firefighters, Navy SEALs, mommy wars, body issues, threesomes, bondage and role-playing, these books have everything we need to satisfy the curious kink in all of us.

 

Social Media Links:

Website: WhitleyCox.com

Twitter: @WhitleyCoxBooks

Instagram: @CoxWhitley

Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/CoxWhitley/

Blog: https://whitleycox.blogspot.ca/

Multi-Author Blog: https://romancewritersbehavingbadly.blogspot.com

Exclusive Facebook Reader Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/234716323653592/

Booksprout: https://booksprout.co/author/994/whitley-cox

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/whitley-cox

AuThursday – Annie J. Kribs

Tell us a little about yourself and your background?

In real life, I’m an IT analyst for an insurance company. I spend a lot of my time coordinating programming resources and working with internal staff to develop the best product possible. This often involves leading negotiations between business users and technical resources. I like to joke that I’d be great at hostage negotiation! This probably seems like a really left-brain job for a writer, but in actuality, it gives me great insight into how people interact, what makes them tick, and how they deal with change. The project management experience is a huge help with writing, too.

I’m married with two ‘tween-agers so my writing time tends to be limited to sitting in dance rehearsals, Boy Scout meetings, and baseball games. We live on 20 acres of wooded land in Michigan where we farm, hunt, swim and play. We have a Doberman pinscher, a cat who thinks he’s a Doberman, another cat who thinks she’s a princess, a guinea pig who is the cutest rodent on Earth, and usually a handful of fish.

How did you come up with the idea for your WOLF CREEK series? 

It started as a really weird dream! I dreamt about this enormous old house with a hidden room and something lost there.  I thought about that dream for days before I felt like it had enough “meat” in it to make a book. Once I developed my characters, I started seeing the town come together. I hadn’t really considered writing a series until I was nearly finished with the first book, Resurrected Hearts. I couldn’t bear the thought of leaving my characters behind, and BAM! A series was born.

Do you ever get writer’s Block?

Yes. Oh my, yes. Because it takes me so long to write a first draft, I often lose my train of thought or excitement for the scene I’m writing. This is the case right now, actually. When I get writer’s block, I liken it to skipping the gym for a few days. I know I have to return to the story, and I know it’ll be painful at first, but it’ll all come right back with practice and dedication.

How did you deal with Rejection Letters if you received any? 

My mantra about rejection letters; the more you get, the less they hurt! I’ve had a few rejections.  Some bordered on rude, some were polite and encouraging. Those polite letters kept my hope alive.

Can you tell us your story of getting “the call” (or e-mail)?

Ahh.  Such a happy memory!  The acquisitions editor at the publishing house sent me an email offering a publishing contract.  I read the email while on a break at work and I literally jumped out of my seat. Mind you, I work in an office with 650 employees, so the action didn’t go unnoticed. (lol) I called my husband first, and then my mom.  About a half-hour later I received a huge bouquet of flowers from my parents congratulating me on my first book. I think I floated on that high for several months! And, the release of each subsequent book has felt nearly the same way.

What’s the most difficult thing about writing characters from the opposite sex?

Strangely, I have a harder time identifying with my own sex. I’ve always been a tomboy.  My best friend was my little brother and I spent the summers of my most formative years at a Boy Scout camp.  I feel like I understand the male brain better than the female brain. Maybe that’s a gift. Maybe it’s a curse.  Sometimes I have characters whose personalities I just can’t identify with, and that’s where I really struggle. I may know the character belongs in the book (and heaven forbid it’s a main character!), but no matter how much I think on it, I just can’t put myself inside that character’s head.  Characters who are fashionable, for example, completely shut me out. Fashion left me behind in the ’80s and I have to turn to my daughter for descriptions of hair, nails, and clothes.

What is your favorite motivational phrase?

I’m a strong Christian, and I turn to God daily for inspiration, patience, guidance – everything.  My favorite bible verse is from Genesis 28:15

“I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go, and I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.”

I carry this phrase on a tiny sheet of paper in my wallet and it brings me a great deal of comfort.

What are your current projects?

I’m feverishly trying to finish the last book in my Wolf Creek series.  I’m probably halfway through and I have no idea what to call it. I pitched a series idea to a new publisher recently and they loved it so I’m anxious to get started on it.  I’m also working on turning a YA short story I wrote about a school shooting into a full-length novel. This is a work that’s close to my heart, but also extremely painful to write so it’s taking some time.

Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

I’m active on Facebook as “Annie J. Kribs”, on Instagram at @anniekribsauthor, on Twitter at @ajkribsauthor, and I have a website www.anniekribs.com.  I love communicating with readers!

Do you have a sexy excerpt you’d like to share with us?

From my recent release Healing Hearts:

“So, you’re interested in me, huh?” His expression had now changed from teasing to smug satisfaction as he stepped back and sized her up.

“I didn’t say that.” Bailey turned her back on him and locked the heavy door. She needed to compose herself. She was so out of practice with the whole dating scene and anyway, Brent had never been flirtatious. What was it about Luke that made her feel like a fumbling teenager? Unfair!

“Yeah. You kinda did. You said you could have been interested in any other guy at the coffee shop. That implies that you were interested in someone, and saying that it might not have been me was just your way of throwing doubt across my path. But I didn’t fall for it. You like me.” His complete conviction was as sexy as his megawatt smile. Until now, she’d always thought swooning only happened in romance novels. She tried to cover herself with a stern look.

“Less and less all the time,” Bailey assured him, which only made him chuckle. “Well, it was nice, um, chatting with you, Luke. I’ve got to get back.” Bailey took a step away from the door, which turned out to be too wide, and slid down the cement steps. Luke was there in a flash, his arms around her keeping her from landing flat on her back.

Bailey clutched at his arms, her torso pressed tightly against him. Oh my! He felt every bit as good as he looked in his form-fitting T-shirt. She licked her lips, hoping he couldn’t feel her heart pounding, though whether it was from the near slip or his amazing body, even she couldn’t tell.

Luke watched her, first with concern, and then interest as he held her. His head came down as if he was about to kiss her. Bailey scrambled to free herself.

“Sorry. I really do have to go. Now.” She put space between them the instant her feet met the ground, backing away toward Rose Avenue and the relative safety of Buzzy’s Bed and Breakfast.