Posted in #Book, #Giveaway, Author, blog, Book, Paranormal, Romance, Silver Dagger Scriptorium Tours, Tour

When Darkness Falls by Ellen Chauvet – Book Tour + #Giveaway

26/25/17

**
When Darkness Falls
The First Vampire Redemption Story
by Ellen Chauvet
Genre: Paranormal Romance
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**
Lexie Miles, a southern belle living her dream life in Paris, is devastated
when her best friend Emma is brutally raped and murdered by vampires.
From that moment Lexie’s “perfect world” begins to crumble. She
discovers her entire life has been a sham and everyone she cares
about has been lying to her. Angry doesn’t begin to describe her
reaction to the news.


Plunged into a two-thousand year old war between good and evil, she is
propelled into a world of blood, lust and dark secrets. She must
embrace her birthright to fight an ancient threat to humanity.
Bequeathed with the dubious gift of being the “Chosen One,” Lexie
meets the enigmatic Etienne Benoit. She falls hard for him and when
he betrays her, she vows to get revenge. After all, she is a vampire
executioner and killing vampire is what she does.
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wdf- excerpt
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Chapter 1 – Lexie Miles

     **

Lexie sat waiting for her best friend Emma Gunther to join her at their favorite French bistro, the Boeuf sur la Toit, off the Champs Elysees. Emma had been away for two weeks and Lexie was looking forward to their reunion.

Her thoughts drifted to the latest vampire novel Emma had given her to read. It contained hot, juicy sex scenes. Her gaze settled on a handsome man who had entered the restaurant. His wool coat outlined broad shoulders and chest, and tapered to a slim waist and hips. Dark eyes caught hers for a moment before shifting on. He sauntered to a single table radiating sex and passion. Lexie’s imagination took over. In her fantasy he was a vampire and she was his lover. She undressed him and heat rose in her groin as she pictured him naked. Lost in her fantasy, she jumped when a hand touched her shoulder.

“Earth to Lexie,” Emma’s familiar voice intruded.

“Shit you scared the be-jesus out of me.” Lexie rose and hugged her friend, then stood back. “Darlin’ I’m so happy you’re back,” she said slipping comfortably into her native Atlanta drawl. The accent she had to clip when speaking French or the Parisian’s would look at her with disdain.

“It’s good to be back,” Emma said, removing her coat before sitting at their table. Emma was tall, had long brown hair which she pulled back in a severe bun and thick glasses. They worked together as translators for the United Nations and their friendship had flourished over the past three years. Emma was the science translator as well as a chemist and math whizz. They were a strange combination: a pretty Southern belle from Georgia and a stodgy but brilliant German fraulein, but the friendship worked. Rather than going home to Atlanta, Lexie had spent summer vacations at the Gunther’s cottage in the Taunus Mountains, and Christmas holidays with Emma and her father in Frankfurt.

Too cold in late November to sit outside, Lexie and Emma enjoyed the warmth and coziness of the restaurant as they waited for their meals.

“What were you thinking about when I came in?” Emma said. “You were a million miles away.”

Lexie felt her cheeks redden and dipped her head to avoid Emma’s stare. “I was thinkin’ about some stuff at work. How was your trip?” Lexie steered the conversation to a safer topic.

“It was good. Saw some friends from university and had a good visit with my father.”

Lexie noticed that Emma’s response was vague, and wondered what she wasn’t saying. Before she could ask, the waiter arrived with their food. They ate in silence, the awkwardness between them increasing.

Puzzled by her friend’s reticence, Lexie leaned back and said, “How come the subject of men and vampires hasn‘t come up yet?”

“You always make fun of me when I talk about vampires,” Emma replied. “And as for men…” she left the statement hanging. Lexie did think that Emma’s fascination with the undead was odd so she steered the conversation toward men.

Lexie felt a twinge of remorse that Emma was reluctant to mention vampires around her, so she chose to bring a bit of humor to the conversation.

“We’re not spring chickens anymore,” Lexie said.

“Don’t be silly, we’re only 29.” Emma replied. “Besides, you tried a committed relationship, and we both know how that went.”

“Don’t remind me,” Lexie said as Justin’s handsome face flashed through her mind. “I still get my panties in a wad when I think of findin’ him with that bitch. That still hurts.”

“Ach, let’s not rehash that one again.” Just like Lexie’s drawl, Emma’s German accent was always more evident when it was just the two of them.

“At least I have one to rehash. How much longer are you gonna to pine over Tom?”

“That’s not fair.”

Lexie could see the hurt in her friend’s eyes. “I’m sorry. I just get frustrated that you waste your time longin’ for our unapproachable boss.” The truth was Lexie also had a little crush on their brawny, Daniel Craig like English boss. But of the two of them, she had the role of being the one who was worldly about men, and she enjoyed that. Since the disaster with Justin, she had shied away from any long term relationships. One night stands were exciting and safe. Never mind that they left her feeling empty and lonely.

Emma smiled at her. “I know you worry about me. Maybe my destiny is to find a ’good’ vampire like in the books we’ve been reading. Then I could live a life of adventure and hot, juicy, passionate sex.” Emma purred.

“Girl they are just myths. Besides, I don’t believe in good and evil.” Lexie usually saw Emma’s eyes twinkling in amusement through her thick glasses at their ongoing debate.

But this time Emma’s eyes held no sparkle and she said with a serious tone. “All myths have some truth in the background.”

“I guess everyone needs to believe in somethin’.” Lexie said. Especially when you’re a mousy nerd. She experienced a twinge of guilt at her unkind thought. Lexie loved Emma like a sister and her attempts to improve her appearance came from a place of caring.

“Hon you are barkin’ up the wrong tree if you think I’ll ever believe vampires are real.  There isn’t any ‘truth’ in the background. Although I must admit, I enjoy the erotica. The scenes give me wonderful ideas for my own flings.” She winked at her friend. “C’mon let’s get out of here and go for a walk.”

Even Lexie noticed that male heads turned to ogle her as she exited. She and Emma walked the Champs Elysees, wandering in and out of the fashionable stores that were still open.

“This would look wonderful on you,” Lexie said. She held up a deep purple sweater for Emma’s approval. Lexie felt it was her mission in life to break Em out of her dowdy wardrobe.

“It would look better on you.” Emma replied. “This is more my style.” She held up a mustard yellow sweater and Lexie cringed at the sight.

“The color is awful. It makes you look dead. Will you at least try this purple one on?

Emma took the sweater and slipped it over her head. Lexie smiled. It was stunning and brought out Em’s chocolate brown eyes.

It’s too….bright.” Emma said and yanked the sweater off.

“I love it on you.”

Emma regarded the sweater and Lexie could sense that she wavered.

“Won’t you at least give it a try?”

“I don’t know….I have plenty of clothes.”

“C’mon hon, it’s sexy.”

“I never think of myself that way.”

Lexie grabbed Emma’s arm and pulled her in front one of the store mirrors. “Hold it up in front of you.”

“Does it really make me look sexy?” Lexie could tell the idea of sexy appealed to her.

“Absofrigginlutely, you have to have it.” Lexie smiled to herself as Emma walked to the cashier and paid for the item.

Will wonders never cease?

They stepped back out on the boulevard and Lexie linked arms with Emma as they walked. In soft whispers they commented on the men that they passed on the street. It was their usual game of imagining whether or not certain ones could be good vampires or bad vampires and then laughed at their silliness.

Lexie pointed to a couple approaching. “Now he’s someone I could take to bed in a heartbeat,” she whispered into Emma’s ear.

They were passing the Cartier store and Emma grabbed her arm and pulled.

“Look at that diamond necklace. Isn’t that the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen?”

“I guess so.” Lexie stumbled after her.

Startled by Emma’s sudden interest in the incredibly expensive item in the window, Lexie started to say something when Emma tensed holding her arm so tight it hurt.

“Em, you’re hurtin’ me.” She tugged at her friend’s grip but Emma held on tighter. “What’s going on with you? The necklace is gorgeous, and way out of our price range.”

Lexie felt a presence behind her. Her scalp prickled and her heart rate accelerated. She scratched her head wondering if she’d picked up lice. The scratching didn’t help.

“Oui, that is a most delightful piece,” said a tinkling female voice with a heavy French accent. “It would look stunning on you.”

Lexie turned and the petite young woman who had spoken was too gorgeous for words. Her hair was blond almost white in the soft light of the Cartier window. Blue eyes twinkled from her heart shaped face. Her skin was translucent and flawless. The woman extended her hand and as Lexie shook it she noticed delicate blue veins on the back.

“My name is Marielle,” she said. “And this is my husband Francois.”

Lexie looked up into eyes so dark brown they appeared black. High cheekbones that any model would kill for were framed by lustrous brown hair. His broad chest and shoulders filled out the suede jacket he wore, and tight fitting designer jeans revealed a slim waist and long legs.

So young to be married.

“Enchanté” Lexie replied taking the man’s outstretched hand. “Je m’apelle Lexie.” Again her scalp prickled. It was annoying.

She looked at Emma who still clutched her arm. Emma stared at the couple in a way that was not friendly but as if she knew these strangers.

“Do y’all know each other?” Lexie asked puzzled by Emma’s demeanor.

“Ah no, mademoiselle.” Francois spoke for the first time and reached out his hand toward Emma.

Emma released the death grip she had on Lexie’s arm. In slow motion Emma raised her hand and when Lexie looked into her eyes the pupils were dilated and fixed. Her mouth opened but no sound came out. Lexie could see that Francois had captured Emma’s eyes with his own and the intensity of his gaze reminded Lexie of a hypnotist.

How odd.

“This is my friend Emma.” Lexie was pleased to introduce her friend but for the first time felt the male attention was being stolen by Emma.

Francois raised Emma’s hand to his lips and kissed the back of it. When he released it, it hung in the air like some disembodied prosthetic. Before Lexie could say anything, Francois turned to Lexie.

“We were just passing by and noticed you admiring the necklace. We were both struck by your good looks and Marielle couldn’t resist saying hello. Are you perhaps a fashion model?”

“Oh, well it’s nice to meet you both and no, I am not a fashion model. But thank you kindly for the compliment,” Lexie replied, her ego soothed.

“C’mon, we need to go,” Emma said. “It’s getting late and I have a lot to do tomorrow.”

Rude much? “It was nice meeting you both,” Lexie said.

“It was our pleasure mademoiselle,” Francois replied. “Perhaps we will bump into each other again soon.” He smiled at Emma and Lexie noticed that the smile never reached his eyes.

“I would enjoy that,” Emma responded and then blushed to her roots. “We need to go.” Emma hustled Lexie to the curb. She waved her arm to hail a cab.

“Em, what are you doing? You just live a few blocks away, and I can take the train to Montmartre.” Emma didn’t respond, and as a cab pulled alongside, she jerked open the door and climbed in.

“Get in,” she demanded. Lexie hesitated. Emma reached out and yanked Lexie’s arm and she stumbled into the cab.

“Em, what’s wrong with you? You’re acting very strange.”

“There was just something about that couple that I didn’t trust. Especially the woman. They just – how do you say it in English ‘bugged me’.

“But, honey, what’s with the cab? Aren’t we going to the Bus Palladium for dancing?”

“I’m too tired to go dancing tonight.” Emma replied. “Besides I want to make sure that you get home safe.”

Still puzzled at her friend’s strange behavior, Lexie sat quietly for several minutes hoping she would explain further. When she didn’t, she decided to change the topic.

“Are we getting together tomorrow?

“Not tomorrow,” Emma replied.

“We could go shopping at the Gallerie Lafayette and Printemps. Have a late lunch at Café du Margot and finalize our plans for Christmas. It’ll be here before you know it.”

“I have some things I need to take care of. But I will call you on Sunday morning and we can get together then, okay?”

“Sounds good. Don’t forget my Mom arrives in the afternoon.” Lexie said wondering what things Emma needed to take care of. On occasion her friend could be aloof.

“I haven’t forgotten. I’m looking forward to meeting her.” The cab pulled up in front of Lexie’s apartment. She was surprised when Emma leaned over and grabbed her arm.

“Be careful, Paris is not as safe as you think. Lock your door and check your windows.”

“I promise I’ll be careful,” Lexie replied. “Are you sure you’re okay?

“I’m fine. I’ll talk to you Sunday.”

Lexie waved as the taxi pulled away from the curb. Emma’s eyes stared at her, but she didn’t wave back. So strange. She entered her apartment unable to shake off the sense of unease brought on by Emma’s behavior.

Large by Paris standards, Lexie’s home reflected her eclectic taste. Deep red drapes covered the French doors that led to her balcony, and the pieces of furniture she’d acquired were ultra-modern in design. She took a moment to review her to do list in preparation for her mother’s visit. Most of them were ticked off. She would clean the next day.

In contrast to the rest of the apartment, her bedroom was romantic with wooden shutters painted a robin’s egg blue, a bedspread to match and big fluffy pillows tossed casually about. Her bed was wrought iron with gauzy soft blue drapes. Lexie changed into her pajamas and her eyes locked on to the most recent vampire book she was reading. Her thoughts returned to Emma and the discomfort she’d experienced earlier returned. She picked up the phone to call her then smiled at her concern. I’ll worry about that tomorrow.

**
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Ellen Chauvet lives in Vancouver, British Columbia. Her love for reading
and writing developed at an early age and she wrote several short
stories and plays which were lost over the years. In 2003 a friend
introduced her to “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”, and Ellen was
fascinated by the idea of good and evil vampires. She particularly
loves Anne Rice, Charlaine Harris and Laurell K. Hamilton. ‘When
Darkness Falls’ if the first in a series of books called ‘The Vampire
Redemption Series’ and is adult fiction.
**
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Follow the tour HERE
for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!
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Posted in #Book, #Giveaway, Author, blog, Book, Romance, Silver Dagger Scriptorium Tours, suspense, Tour, Writer

Wild Horses by Jannine Gallant – Book Tour + #Giveaway

26/05/17

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Wilde Horses
by Jannine Gallant
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Pub Date: May 23, 2017
**
**
The Wilde brothers may be attracted
to all things fast and furious. But their spirited sister can’t be
tamed when it comes to matters of the heart . . .
The beautiful vistas and peace and
quiet on her family’s Wyoming ranch are a balm for Eden Wilde’s
soul—and inspire a gentle touch when it comes to breaking the wild
horses she loves. Though there’s no hope on the breathtaking
horizon for her love life. Until her sanctuary is invaded by a movie
studio shooting their latest blockbuster starring Hollywood’s man
of the moment.
After a personal tragedy plays out in
his real life, movie star Blake Benedict finds himself falling for
the wide-open spaces and easy going pace of Wyoming—and for Eden.
Around her, he feels safe shedding his public persona and letting
down his guard. But then accidents begin to happen on set, mishaps
that could end Blake’s career—or his life. And Eden will be
forced out of her comfort zone to save the Hollywood hero from an
enemy he never saw coming . . .
**
**
**
**
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Write what you know. Jannine Gallant
has taken this advice to heart, creating characters from small towns
and plots that unfold in the great outdoors. She grew up in a tiny
Northern California town and currently lives in beautiful Lake Tahoe
with her husband and two daughters. When she isn’t busy writing or
being a full time mom, Jannine hikes or snowshoes in the woods around
her home. Whether she’s writing contemporary, historical or
romantic suspense, Jannine brings the beauty of nature to her
stories.
**
**
Follow the tour HERE
for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!
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Posted in #Book, Author, Bewitching Book Tours, blog, Book, LGBT, Romance, suspense, Tour, Writer

Defensive Mindset by Wendy Temple – Book Tour

25/05/17

 

Defensive Mindset

Wendy Temple

Genre: Romantic Suspense, LGBT
Publisher: Ylva Publishing
Publication date: April 19, 2017
ISBN: 978-3-95533-837-4

Book Description:

Star footballer and successful businesswoman Jessie Grainger has her life set, and doesn’t need anything getting in the way. That includes rebellious rival player Fran Docherty, a burnt-out barmaid with a past as messed up as her attitude. So when the clashing pair find themselves on the same Edinburgh women’s football team, how will they survive each other, let alone play to win?

About the Author:

Wendy Temple’s first love has always been sport. She kicked a football as soon as she could walk. At school, girls weren’t allowed to play football, so she played hockey instead. Hockey became her go-to sport for many years, but she played five a side football as often as she could/was permitted!
Wendy also loves music and from a young age got into punk. She remembers watching the Sex Pistols on the BBC news and her mum and granny being appalled. Wendy was ten and thought they were amazing.
Wendy believes that sport and a good family saved her from a life on the fringes of society. At age fifteen she was experimenting with drugs and skipping school. She failed all her exams apart from English. It was her love of sport that had her returning to school to re-sit exams and try again.
Upon leaving school Wendy studied physical and community education. After college she became a youth worker, running sports clubs, after school clubs and youth clubs. Working for an orthotics company inspired her to go to university to study Occupational Therapy – providing invaluable insight into physical and mental health, including addiction, which is one of the major themes in Defensive Mindset.
Wendy has spent most of her life in Edinburgh bar a couple of months in London. For her, Edinburgh is a city that can feel like a town: “It’s cosmopolitan, quaint and steeped in history, an ideal setting for any story,” says Wendy, which explains why Defensive Mindset is based in Portobello, Edinburgh!

 

 

Posted in #Book, #Giveaway, Author, blog, Book, Romance, Silver Dagger Scriptorium Tours, suspense, Tour, Writer

The Sweetheart Kiss by Cheryl Ann Smith – Book Tour + #Giveaway

25/05/17

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THE SWEETHEART KISS
by Cheryl Ann Smith
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Pub Date: May 9, 2017
**
**
Jess Lucas works hard at the all-female PI firm Brash & Brazen, and
after a brush with death, she’s determined to play hard
too—preferably with a certain detective on the Ann Arbor police
force…

Jess was stuck at a frenemy’s wedding, playing bridesmaid in a
mustard-yellow monstrosity, when chaos erupted. First the bride’s
ex tried to stop the wedding. Then someone really put a damper on the
big day by sending a bullet through a stained glass window and into
one of the groomsmen. At least her ugly dress came in handy to stop
the bleeding . . .

While the poor guy is rushed to the ER, Jess gets grilled by a gorgeous cop
who’s not thrilled to learn she’s part PI and part pit bull. But
he has to admit she’s highly observant . . . and he observes that
she’s pretty hot, too.

The thing is, Jess was walking up the same aisle as the victim, and Sam
suspects she was the real target. It’s more than professional duty
that makes him want to protect her—if he doesn’t arrest her first
for interfering in his investigation . . .
**
sk- excerpt
**

There was one thing guaranteed to get Jess Lucas through a wedding that she didn’t want to be in, with a bride she intensely disliked, and a headache that had spiked through her skull the moment she slipped the hideous bridesmaid dress over her head: Alcohol.
The crystal clear liquid called to her with a sweet siren song from within the bottom of her oversized tote bag. There had been speculation among her friends that Amelia Earhart— and aircraft—could be found in the tote along with Bigfoot and extinct dodo birds, if the right team of explorers took on the search. Laying that rumor to rest would have to wait until she finished soaking her throbbing brain with fermented potatoes and ethanol.
Jess was certain a quick dash into the changing room wouldn’t be noticed as the groom hadn’t yet taken his position at the altar. Maybe the clueless sap had wised up and was now making a run for the Ohio border.
No luck. She caught a glimpse of him talking to the minister and smiling. She didn’t know him well, but felt sorry for the guy. He was so dumbstruck by love that he couldn’t see past the big teeth and enhanced breasts to the character within his future wife.
But that wasn’t Jess’s problem. The ceremony was not to start for three minutes and she was quick, despite a slight buzz from previous liquor shots. Without any impediments to block her path, she could get to the bride’s room, down the 1.5 ounces of vodka left from a raid on the minibar during a trip to Vegas last summer, and be back in line before anyone noticed her missing. She just had to shake off groomsman number three.
She’d brought a variety six pack of those little booze bottles, knowing that in order to survive the wedding of Mandy Mae Smith—soon to be Jones—she’d need liquid courage.
Not much of a drinker, she’d managed to chug three bottles already, but her duties had kept her from the fourth.
The white crinoline along the bodice of the wide fifties-prom-dress inspired bridesmaid dress was already rubbing off the top layer of skin on her left arm pit. By the time the evening came to a thank-God-it’s-over close, she intended to be ripping drunk and naked with a groomsman in a vestibule closet somewhere. After all, wasn’t a single woman entitled to be cliché at least once in her life?
“Ready?”
“Er, what?” Jess looked way up at tall groomsman number three,
Dodger Drake. Yes, that was his name. His fake tanned orange face grinned down from a foot above her, his teeth so white that she became convinced he ate, slept, and probably had sex while wearing teeth whitening trays.
“It’s time to line up,” Dodger said and his gaze dipped unapologetically to her modest cleavage pushed up under her chin by the bone-corset bodice of the dress.
Gawd, she hoped that Dodger was a nickname and not some sick joke his parents had heaped on their innocent baby to toughen him up on the playground.
By the way he was measuring her cup size, he was clearly angling to be her next sexual misadventure. Heck, her first sexual misadventure. She was too smart to jump into anything without weighing the pros and cons beforehand.
For the last several very long weeks, she’d been weighted down by gloom over a very serious health scare. After getting good news, she’d taken a look at her life and wasn’t happy with what she saw reflected back at her.
Outside of work, she’d been kind of going along without much purpose. Her social life was boring and she hadn’t had an adventure since she and her friends had been kicked off a bus and almost eaten by buzzards.
She was healthy now. It was time to start living.
Perhaps she should do something reckless.
She’d have to make a plan.
“Oh, okay,” she said and let him lead her into the line. Damn. The bottle would have to wait, she thought, as she tugged at the torturous gown. Really, who would choose mustard yellow corseted dresses with lime and red sashes for a wedding anyway?
Mandy, that’s who.
Dear lord, why had she agreed to this epic mess? Jess hated Mandy. Oh, they’d been friends once. Then Mandy had blossomed after getting her severe overbite corrected, become promiscuous during the last two years of high school, and slept with Jess’s boyfriend of two years, Darren.
A long-winded, weepy apology had tamped down Jess’s desire to kill her, and they’d left high school as frenemies. After all, by the time Jess found out about the cheating, Darren had already done it with half of the girls in their town over the age of sixteen. So what was one more, Mandy had said.
As if that made Jess feel any better.
Besides, the ex-boyfriend with the best friend relationship didn’t last much longer than the time it took for Darren to untangle Mandy’s lacy thong from his braces the night the cops found them parked behind the elementary school. His head had popped up and he was grinning like he’d won the lottery, with red lace snagged on silver metal.
He’d been an overeager virgin, saddled with a girlfriend who wasn’t ready to go past second base, and full of raging hormones. After Mandy, his new reputation as a stud had gained him a following of would-be-hoes who were ready to see if braces were indeed better than a vibrator on certain areas of the female anatomy.
And dear Mandy had spent their senior year in high school orally copulating her way through 25 percent of the males of the senior class.
Senior photos that year were particularly chipper. The young men had a lot to smile about.
This kind of behavior would lead psychologists to suspect childhood trauma or some sort of mental malady. But no, Mandy just liked sex. And she would have made a dent in the other 75 percent if not for that dreaded event called graduation.
So when the call from way out of left field came three weeks ago begging Jess to be part of Mandy’s big day, she had been unable to come up with an excuse quick enough to get out of it. So, here she was…bridesmaid number three.
But what ticked her off most was that Mandy was so happy with Chad Jones that it sickened everyone around her. If karma had blessed Mandy with a taste of her own medicine, Chad would be currently doing it with the maid of honor behind the pulpit instead of high-fiving his best man and heading to the front of the church with a bounce in his step. Not that she was bitter or anything, Jess reminded herself. High school was nine years ago. They’d all moved on.
Sure.
Mandy had trotted off to college, become a lawyer, and was now marrying the man of her dreams. This ending was completely unfair to the good girls of the world.
Jess glanced up the aisle to the groom and wondered if he knew his soon-to-be-wife had questionable morals. Of course he did. He was grinning like a dope who had won a life-long ride on the easy train—easy being the key word.
Sloughing off envy, she promised to be happy for Mandy if it killed her. They had been close once.
The odds of the marriage making it past the five-year anniversary were nil. The last she’d seen of Mandy before she’d fled the bachelorette party two nights ago was the future bride heading into a bathroom stall with a well-endowed stripper named Chaz, and he probably wasn’t helping her look for a lost contact lens between her breasts.
“Do you think the marriage will succeed?” Dodger whispered, and for a second, Jess felt her cheeks warm. Was her skepticism that obvious?
“Of course it will,” she replied without much enthusiasm. It wasn’t nice to say negative things about a bride on her wedding day. “Why would you think otherwise?”
Dodger looked around and bent down. Some of his spray tan had rubbed off on his starched white tuxedo shirt. He smelled of beer and cigarettes.
“I slept with her two months ago,” he said out of the corner of his mouth. “This morning before we left the hotel, I saw her leaving Mr. Jones’s room, carrying her shoes.” Jess’s mouth dropped open.
“Mr. Jones? As in the father of the groom, Mr. Jones?” She glanced to the front of the church. The older but still handsome Mr. Jones was speaking to his half-his-age date, Chandi, and the girl was giggling.
What was it about weddings that sexually charged up some people?
Dodger grinned. “The same.”
Brushing aside that Dodger had also slept with Mandy, Jess frowned.
“Wait. I thought he was sharing a room with Chandi?”
Dodger tipped his head left and lifted his brows. “He is.”
It didn’t take her PI skills to figure that one out. Apparently, Mandy had upped her game.
For some reason, Jess found this funny. She squelched a laugh behind her hand. Suddenly, she didn’t need the last bottle of booze. This was going to be fun.
“Should we raise our hands when asked if anyone objects to the wedding? It sounds like intimate knowledge of the bride would qualify you as an expert, and she slept with my high school boyfriend. We both have good reasons to object.”
The guy chuckled. “Ouch. Chad slept with my college girlfriend. I say we let this play out.”
“They deserve each other,” she said and he nodded.
With a new appreciation of groomsman number three, she hooked her arm with his and smiled. “Agreed.”
The music started and off they went.
In front of Dodger, groomsman number two was shellacked and polished down to his gleaming fingernails. He hooked arms with the giggling Shelby, who looked up at him in a way that suggested she wasn’t wearing panties.
“I’ve been to three weddings this summer and I have to say, you’re the hottest bridesmaid so far,” Dodger said.
“Thanks.” Jess wasn’t sure if that was some sort of awkward come-on, or whether she wanted to take it as such. The man looked like an over-sized Oompa Loompa. But after surviving a recent cancer scare and deciding life needed to be lived to the fullest, she hadn’t yet ruled him out for the coat closet.
Sex was a distant memory. None of her recent dates had made her want to shave her legs or put on sexy panties. Maybe it was time for a no-commitments romp for fun.
Besides, he had a good sense of humor with an evil streak. She admired that in a co-conspirator.
“Save me a dance later,” she said and shot him a flirty look. At least she hoped it was flirty.
“Yes, ma’am. How can I refuse?” His response definitely held a sexual overtone. The way he returned his attention to her scooped neckline left no doubt that he had a coat closet all picked out for them. She just had to say yes.
Could orange be her new…something?
“Off we go,” said the elderly usher/uncle of the groom, shooing them out the open double doors.
The likelihood of her actually sneaking off to the coat closet with Dodger was slim, but he made her laugh and she did enjoy his company.
Except for Summer’s wedding last weekend, it had been weeks since she let herself have some fun. Now that she’d been given the all clear by the doc, the cloud of doom above her head was gone. Dodger couldn’t be the only single man at the wedding. Maybe she could find someone with more substance? Someone long-term? The possibilities were endless and she was seeing life through new eyes. It was time to get back to living.
The music swelled with the beginning notes of the wedding song as Jess stepped over rose petals and Dodger grinned back at the bride. Mandy kept her eyes averted from his.
It turned out that neither Jess nor Dodger—who was enjoying himself immensely—had to protest the marriage. They were steps away from the altar when a shout sounded from the back of the room and brought the processional to a halt.
“Mandy, wait! Don’t do this!”
Jess knew that voice. She flashed back nine years. It was the cold flush of the unfairness of life taking one last stab through her fourth and fifth vertebrae to kick her back to reality.
Darren, aka cheating scumbag high school boyfriend, had arrived to steal the bride. Figured.
The flower girl stopped and everyone swiveled in their chairs. Jess was halfway turned around, both disbelieving and shocked that he was still tangled up with Mandy after all these years, when a loud snap echoed through the old church, followed by a scream, and groomsman number two landed at her feet.

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Cheryl Ann Smith became hooked on romance at age fourteen when she stayed up
all night to read The Flame and The Flower by Kathleen Woodiwiss. Her
own writing journey happened much later, when one afternoon she ran
out of books and decided to write her own. Previously, she has
published five sexy Regency novels and one novella with Berkley in
her School for Brides series.
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Follow the tour HERE
for exclusive excerpts and giveaway!
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Posted in #Book, #Giveaway, Author, blog, Book, Comedy, New Adult, Romance, Silver Dagger Scriptorium Tours, Tour, Writer

Last Semester by Corine Mekaouche – Book Tour + #Giveaway

24/05/17

Last Semester
by Corine Mekaouche
Genre: Comedy, New Adult, Romance
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College. Party. Drama. Life.
When Johanna ‘Jo’ Gold, witty college life blogger and senior at Rutan
University, decides to move in with three male strangers her last
semester of school, her life unexpectedly turns upside down. While
dealing with her new roommates, A.J., the pompous rich kid who feels
trapped in following his father’s footsteps; Rob, the prematurely
engaged former womanizer who tries to force Jo out of the house at
all costs; and Drew, the 21-year-old virgin genius whose encounters
with women have been more than limited, Jo learns that change isn’t
always easy and it’s up to her to learn how to survive the remainder
of her time at Rutan the best that she can. Along with searching for
her missing mother, figuring out a clever way to pay for school
tuition on her own, and dealing with the childish pranks brought on
by a certain roommate, Jo’s issues seem more complicated than the
average 21-year-old. Can Jo endure the dramatic perils of college
while planning for life after graduation?
Navigating through college isn’t easy especially when you don’t know what
the future holds, but Jo is determined to conquer her present even if
it means figuring out what being an adult is all about. With
graduation around the corner, Jo and her roommates have some growing
up to do and the last semester is all they have.
College is complicated.
Partying is a necessity.
Drama is guaranteed.
Life is just beginning.
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ls- excerpt
**

“Breathe, Rob! Just breathe!” I demand in a panicky voice from the back seat as we swiftly pull up to the entrance of the hospital. Clutching his chest in pain next to me, he heaves out a few spouts of air, but it’s not enough to help him.

Shit!

I watch my roommate Rob’s cheeks turn from a shade of deep pink to a dark crimson red. “A.J.! He’s getting worse!” I yell to my other roommate in the driver’s seat. He rolls his eyes then turns around.

“Calm down, Jo!” he exclaims. “I can’t think when you’re yelling like this!”

Drew, our other roommate, and usually the voice of reason, says nothing as he quickly jumps out of the Range Rover and runs into the hospital entrance.

“Can’t. Breathe,” Rob manages to force out of his mouth, then before I know it, his body falls limp and his head somehow ends up on my lap. His eyes roll to the back of his head.

“I think he’s dying!” I whine and suddenly I’m losing my breath.

Releasing a loud groan, A.J. climbs out of the SUV and casually walks into the hospital as if nothing is wrong.

Why is he so calm and I’m flipping the hell out?

I begin to shake Rob’s shoulders but he doesn’t respond and I’m almost positive that he’s not breathing at all now.

It’s official.

I killed my roommate.

Okay, maybe he’s not dead yet, but if death was a road, he just made a left turn for the worse then ran over a few annoying potholes and some week old roadkill…and probably drove off a cliff or something…

Ugh! I don’t even know what I’m saying anymore! I feel guilty for doing this to him and I feel even more guilty because I kinda hate his arrogant, smug ass, but just because someone is an asshole doesn’t mean that they deserve to die, does it?

The back door opens and I see A.J. and Drew standing outside with a wheelchair. A.J. roughly wraps his arms around Rob’s body and begins to pull him out of the car. “Fuck! He’s like the size of an ogre,” he complains as he struggles to get Rob into the wheelchair. The fact that Rob is as useless as a wet noodle right now makes it difficult for A.J. to adjust Rob’s body in the chair. I cringe just watching it.

“I knew this was going to happen one day,” Drew says shaking his head. “The inevitable always happens.”

Shooting Drew a snarling glare, A.J. grits his teeth. “Just roll the goddamn chair into the hospital,” he instructs. Drew turns the chair around and begins to jog into the emergency room with Rob’s body leaning to one side. A.J. looks at me in the SUV, annoyed. “Well, are you coming?” he asks and I just freeze.

Do I stay? Do I go? I don’t know what to do with myself!

Taking a quick yet deep breath, I climb out of the SUV, shut the door and join A.J. on the other side of the vehicle.

“I’m horrible,” I blurt out and I can feel wetness welling in my eyes. “I’m a horrible person.”

“Dammit, Jo! I hate it when girls cry,” he complains as he shuts the other back door and begins to walk into the hospital. He pauses in his tracks when he notices that I’m not following him.

I’m frozen

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The geek and the dreamer, Corine Mekaouche has always had the vision of
becoming a writer. While growing up in the New Jersey suburbs, Corine
spent her childhood immersed in music, novels, and writing. To her,
the arts was the best escape ever. For college, she attended Rutgers
University majoring in English and minoring in Theatre Arts. Somehow,
Corine survived the college experience and became somewhat of a
grown-up yet still kept the vision of being a writer alive because it
may be all she’s qualified for. So, she wrote and wrote until Last
Semester, a new adult novel about college life and growing up, was
born. Currently, she is writing other novels and plays for future
release. When she’s not writing, loudly singing to songs in her car
or dancing in random places for no apparent reason, Corine is being
an awesome wife and a mom residing outside of the wonderfully flawed
New York City.
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Follow the tour HERE
for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and giveaways!
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Writing the Wolf by Steffanie Holmes – Book Tour + #Giveaway

24/05/17

 

Writing the Wolf

Wolves of Crookshollow

Book Two

Steffanie Holmes

Genre: paranormal romance, shifters
Publisher: Bacchanalia House
Date of Publication: May 18, 2017
ASIN: B06W58YNT6
Word Count: 70k
Cover Artist: Aria at Resplendant Covers
Tagline: Rosa just wants to be left alone to write her book, but when werewolves attempt to kidnap her, she realizes her neighbor Caleb is the only one who can protect her. But Caleb is hiding a secret of his own … fur and sparks fly in this hot paranormal romance from USA Today bestselling author Steffanie Holmes.

Book Description:

Sink your teeth into the hot new werewolf paranormal romance from USA Today bestselling author, Steffanie Holmes!
Rosa
I need to escape.
After those racist bastards destroyed my home, I can’t face the world again.
I’ve rented a cabin in the heart of the Crookshollow forest. I’m going to lock myself away and work on my book. I’m going to write my story.
And I absolutely, positively WILL NOT think about Caleb, the hunky labourer who’s fixing up my cabin.
No way.
I won’t think about the way his eyes melt my heart, and his smile melts my panties.
I’m too emotionally raw right now. I can’t handle a fling, especially not with a white guy.
Especially not a guy like him. A guy who shags and leaves. I can’t handle any more heartache.
Caleb
Rosa Parker – clever writer, black woman, total hottie.
The connection between us sizzles – there’s no denying it: this woman is my mate.
When I’m near her, all I want to do is claim her.
If only I wasn’t the biggest threat to her life right now.
With a rogue wolf pack after my hide, I can’t afford a distraction. Even a distraction as alluring as her.
I need to keep my wolfish instincts in check.
But I can’t help myself.
Rosa Parker has got under my skin.
And I won’t stop until I’ve made her mine.
Writing the Wolf is a standalone novel with an HEA. It’s the second book in the hot new paranormal romance series by USA Today bestselling author Steffanie Holmes. Read on if you love spunky heroines, pack politics, and a hero so hot he’ll have you howling for more.
Amazon      BN      iBooks      Kobo      Google Play

Excerpt 2

Rosa stalked through the
forest ahead of me, deliberately averting her gaze from my naked body. I wanted
to make a joke about it, but judging by the set expression on her face, I knew
it wasn’t the best time.
When Rosa reached the cabin,
she stomped across the porch, unlocked the door, walked inside and slammed the
door shut behind her. I stopped myself before I slammed my face against the
glass panel.
“Hey,” I rapped against the
window beside the door. “I’m still out here.”
“I know that. Say what you
need to say to me through the door,” Rosa moved toward the kitchen, and started
slamming her groceries down on the bench. Her hands were still shaking. “I’m
not having you inside, not when you could turn into one of them.
“Could you at least throw me
a towel or something? It’s a little nippy out here and I’m afraid I’m not
showing you my best angle.”
The corners of Rosa’s mouth
tugged upward a little, but she didn’t crack that gorgeous smile for me. She
balled up the red duvet she’d spread over the bed, and shoved it through the
door to me, slamming it shut behind her before I could get an arm through the
gap.
I wrapped the duvet around
my lower half, knotting the ends together. “Not quite the kilt I’m used to, but
it’s something.”
“Don’t try to be funny, Caleb.
This is serious. You’re a werewolf. I was just attacked by two other
werewolves. The werewolves that attacked me today – they’re your stepbrothers,
and they are after me to get to you for some reason that I’m sure to regret
learning.”
“That’s an astute summary of
the situation.”
“I’m going to need more,
Caleb. I’m going to need the full story.” She slammed the kettle down on the
stove, and turned on the gas.
“It’s a pretty long story.”
Rosa held up her cup and
waved it at me. She folded her arms and leaned against the bench, one hip
jutting out suggestively. “I’m listening.”

 

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About the Author:

Steffanie Holmes is a USA Today bestselling author of dark and steamy paranormal romance. Her books feature clever, witty heroines, wild shifters, cunning witches and alpha males who get what they want.
Before becoming a writer, Steffanie worked as an archaeologist and museum curator. She loves to explore historical settings and ancient conceptions of love and possession. From Dark Age Europe to crumbling gothic estates, Steffanie is fascinated with how love can blossom between the most unlikely characters.
Steffanie lives in New Zealand with her husband and a horde of cantankerous cats. Learn more about Steffanie at her website: http://www.steffanieholmes.com. She also writes dark science fiction under the name S C Green.
Want to be informed when the next Steffanie Holmes paranormal romance story goes live?
Sign up for the mailing list! http://steffmetal.com/subscribe
Twitter @steffmetal
FB reader group: Books that Bite – https://www.facebook.com/groups/1757403921176035/

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Posted in #Book, #Giveaway, Author, blog, Book, Contemporary, Romance, Silver Dagger Scriptorium Tours, Tour, Writer

Eight Days in the Sun by MK Schiller – Book Tour + #Giveaway

23/05/17

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EIGHT DAYS IN THE SUN
by MK Schiller
Pub. Date: 5/2/2017
Genre: Contemporary Romance
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Love needs only one chance to shine . . .
He followed in his family’s footsteps and just graduated Marine boot camp. Now
Mason Cutler’s personal mission is to get plenty of sun, surf, and
no-strings romance in his favorite laid-back Florida beach town
before shipping out. But a chance encounter with reserved Kiran
Shenoy becomes a golden day of conversation, connection—and an
intense attraction Mason can’t walk away from. They make an
agreement—eight sensuous days together without regrets or promises.
Yet soon Mason is longing to convince the spirited woman behind
Kiran’s sad beautiful eyes to take a chance on even more . . .
All Kiran dared hope for was a chance to heal after a tragic accident and a
devastating loss. Mason’s freewheeling energy and head-on courage
warms her scarred body and soul—and ignites her heart. But with
their lives going in different directions, the only commitment they
can make is a pact to meet again. Can what they feel survive Mason’s
military duty, and Kiran’s second chance to restart her life? And
can a desire sparked one summer night be enough for forever?
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ed- excerpt
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Swinging my suitcase, I speed walk toward the elevator bank.

 

One of the cars is out of service. The other one is incredibly slow. By the time the doors finally open, I’ve silently sung the whole soundtrack of Rent, all five hundred twenty-five minutes and six hundred seconds of it.

 

“Hold it, please,” says the guy behind me as the doors begin to close.

 

I press the open button, but the doors keep closing. I jab it. The metal doors don’t stop.

 

“Sorry,” I say. “Can’t get it to open.” I throw my hand in the gap between the doors. Nope. Still moving shut. Guess it doesn’t have a safety. I pull my hand back before the doors slam.

 

He rushes toward me, a duffle bag slung across his shoulder. It’s too late, dude. They close. Well almost close. I gasp as a very large sneaker wedges between the doors.

 

“Ouch,” he says as the doors part.

 

“Are you all right?”

 

He smiles. “I’ll live.”

 

He presses the button for the tenth floor. The air in the elevator suddenly becomes heavier. It’s the same guy who held the front door for me, the one with the smoky southern flare in his voice.

 

“I swear I was trying to hold it open.”

 

“You were?” He looks straight into my eyes.

 

For some reason, I don’t shift my head down like I normally do. I’m not sure if this makes it worse or better. He’s a nice looking boy…man. Who the hell am I kidding? He’s hot, like you-might-mistake-me-for-anunderwear- model hot. He’s tall with defined, but not over-the-top, muscles.

 

His jeans are ripped in all the right places and his faded gray T-shirt reads free shrugs in all caps. He’s got a strong square jaw that’s a day or two past a shave. His eyes are an intense light blue, my favorite color. The T-shirt might as well say my superpower is being beautiful.

 

The doors close, trapping us in a space that seems to get exponentially smaller now that he’s sharing it with me. He runs his fingers through brownish hair. Umm…not exactly brown. I’d call the color milk chocolate spiced with threads of cinnamon and honey.

 

Get a grip. So what if he’s good-looking? This is freaking Beach Town, Florida. Next to seashells and citrus, cute boys are the largest produced crop. Wait. He asked me something, didn’t he? Oh yeah, it was about the stupid elevator. “I pushed the open door button.”

 

“It just closed anyway, huh?” He quirks an eyebrow, an amused expression on his face.

 

“It did. I swear. It isn’t working,” I say, pointing to the button with the picture of the triangles next to it.

 

“That’s the button you pushed?”

 

“Yeah.”

 

“You realize it’s the close door button, right?”

 

I stare at it and the one next to it. The placement seems wrong, but the pictures don’t lie. “I do now.”

 

The elevator jolts before the car stops completely. I stumble back.

 

“You all right?” he asks.

 

“What happened?”

 

“Looks like we’re stuck.”

 

I press the button for my floor. Nothing happens. So I start pressing the other buttons. Still nothing. No… This can’t be real. Getting stuck in an elevator with a super hot guy? This is the stuff of corny rom-coms.

 

“There’s no need to panic.”

 

“Not panicking,” I say as I hit a few more buttons.

 

“Are you claustrophobic?”

 

“No.” I sigh and lean back against the railing. I can still feel his gaze on me. “A little.”

 

“Heard it helps to think about something else.”

 

“Like what?” I curl my fingers around the steel railing at the back of the elevator.

 

He tilts his head, studying me. “Have we met?” he asks.

 

I replay the question in my head wondering if I heard correctly. When I laugh, the sound bounces off the walls and echoes inside the small elevator car. “Seriously?”

 

He does a face palm. “Crap, that sounds like a pick-up line. I swear it’s not.”

 

As if I’d think he was trying to pick me up. “I’m sure you’d remember if you knew me.”

 

“That’s true. How could I forget?”

 

For a second, I thought he might be making fun of me on some level. But there isn’t anything malicious in his voice. Taking a deep breath, I force myself to relax.

 

“Kiran Shenoy, right?”

 

I lift my head, wondering if I did know him. I think back to all the boys I went to high school with, but his face doesn’t register at all. It’s the kind of face that would register in triplicate. “How do we know each other?”

 

“No idea. I overheard the lady behind the front desk say your name.”

 

He holds out his hand…his very large hand. “Mason Cutler.”

 

I’ve been curling my fingers around the railing so tightly that I have to shake out my hand before taking his. His handshake is firm. I’m about to let go when he flips my wrist over. He presses his thumb against the ruby red mark there. Very few people notice it against my brown skin. His thumb slides back and forth in a short caress. The stain disappears against the pressure. It comes back slowly, deepening in color for a moment. My pulse spikes ten notches…maybe twenty. After an eternity, he finally lets go. It’s really only been two seconds, but it feels much longer, or maybe not long enough.

 

“It’s not a tattoo?”

 

“It’s a birthmark. They call it a port wine stain.”

 

“A fire stain.”

 

“Right.”

 

“I thought this was inked on since it’s shaped like a heart.”

 

The car starts up with a jolt. He gestures to the screen that signals we are moving. “See? No reason to panic.”

 

The doors open, ending the weirdest elevator ride in the history of the world.

 

“This is me,” I say, my fingers clutching the handle of my suitcase.

 

He holds one of the doors by leaning against it while I get out. I catch a hint of spicy, manly cologne and delicious boy. “Thank you.”

 

“We made it unscathed.”

 

“So we did.” I nod, accepting what happened. He was just being nice and trying to distract me with an introduction.

 

“Maybe I’ll see you around, Shenoy,” he says.

 

“Maybe.”

 

I turn just in time to see the doors close.

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MK Schiller is a hopeless romantic in a hopelessly pragmatic world. In the dark of
night, she sits by the warm glow of her computer monitor, reading or
writing, usually with some tasty Italian…the food that is! She
started imagining stories in her head at a very young age. In fact,
she got so good at it that friends asked her to create plots
featuring them as the heroine and the object of their affection as
the hero. She hopes you enjoy her stories and find The Happily Ever
After in every endeavor. M.K. Schiller loves hearing from readers.
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Follow the tour HERE
for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and giveaway!
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