Sunday, February 28, 2016

Summer Heat - Guaranteed to make your blood run hot! #mgtab

New Releases

SummerHeat_CVR_Flat_SML

 
16 All New Contemporary Romances from NY Times, USA Today, and International Bestselling Authors.


Guaranteed to make your blood run hot. Passion, steamy nights, excitement, and suspense.


Something to suit every reader's taste. Grab a cool drink (you'll need it!), find a hammock, and curl up for an unforgettable escape.


1: Caridad Pineiro, Under the Boardwalk - A passionate night under the boardwalk brought them together, but can Chase and Natalie rekindle that lost love in just one night?


2: Nina Bruhns, Fast and Flirty - The top-secret package STORM Corps transporter Kade Maddox is hired to deliver turns out to be way more trouble—and a whole lot sexier—than he ever anticipated.


3: Rebecca York, Outlaw Justice - Will a surprise reunion with her old lover save her life when she flees from a homicidal husband?


4: Jennifer Lowery, The Fall (Book #2 ATCOM series) - The last thing ATCOM agent Brendan Devayne wants is to settle down, but Mia Lawrence makes him think twice…


5: Taylor Lee, Jared: (Book 1, The Justice Brothers Series) - The rookie cop learned the hard way that when tangling with the Justice Brothers, Justice—like Love-- isn’t always fair or easy.


6: Traci Hall, Festival by the Sea - Al Cooper’s too bad to be a cop and too good to be a crook; Darcy Smith can’t get enough.


7: Stephanie Queen, Beachcomber Heat - This summer’s heat wave on Martha’s Vineyard is breaking records, but so is the crime wave. The combination is causing a wave of red-hot dangerous desire between Dane and Shana.


8: Alicia Street, Training for Love - When private fitness trainer Shannon meets her hot new client, loving her job takes on a whole new meaning.


9: Kathy Ivan, Sex, Lies and Apple Pies - A televised baking competition brings them together. But deceit, intrigue and revenge are on this menu. Can their love survive?


10: Jackie Ivie, The Hunted - LeeAnn’s got business in Miami. Bring on the sun. Sand. Sexy men to look at. The last thing she expects is to be someone’s target.


11: Michele Hauf, The Geek Gets The Girl - Mistaken for the IT geek? This sexy CEO is about to learn the intimate operations of his company—up close, and personal.


12: Rachelle Ayala, Bad Boys for Hire: Ken (Bad Boys for Hire Series, #2) - After Jolie Becker is left at the altar, her friends secretly hire a hunky beach bum to cheer her up.


13: Katy Walters, Sands of Seduction - Clary escaped to a place of sea and sand, a place of passion and seduction.


14: Melissa Keir, Protecting Her Pigg - Arson and fire bring them together, but what will cause the most damage…the arsonist bent on revenge or their own stubborn ways?


15: Dani Haviland, Pool Boy Wanted (No Experience Preferred) - He’d never known a woman before, and that’s just how she wanted him.


16: Jacquie Biggar, Summer Lovin’ - Can two mismatched lovers find a way past their mistakes, or will they keep their lonely hearts forever guarded?



Released: May 24th 2016 by Chill Out Publishing


Pre-Order Summer Heat - Love on Fire:


16 Bestselling,
16 all-new romances guaranteed to make your blood run hot!


Only 99c


Amazon/Kindle (US): http://bit.ly/SuHA
Amazon/Kindle (UK): http://bit.ly/SuHAK
Nook (US): http://bit.ly/SuHtBN
Nook (UK): http://bit.ly/SuHBNUK
Kobo: http://bit.ly/SuHKb


Apple iBooks: coming soon

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Join our pre-order event party March 9/16



  We're giving away a Kindle loaded with books from the best selling authors of Summer Heat! There will chatting, games, and plenty of giveaways. Join us for the fun!

SummerHeat_BoxSet_LRG

Excerpt from Summer Lovin' by Jacquie Biggar

Mitch’s gaze zeroed in on her lips and darkened. “You and me—later. I’m tired of waiting. It’s time we settled our past so we can move forward with our lives.”
He leaned in and gave her a quick, hard kiss, their breath co-mingling and tasting of the coffee he’d stopped and bought for her.
Rebecca sighed and gave herself up to the moment, though in the back of her mind his words nipped and stung, warning her that it was going to hurt when he left. How did this happen? When did Mitch Taylor become necessary to her happiness?
God. She was in love with him.
Her mouth slackened. Mitch sat back and looked at her quizzically for a moment, then he turned away to help young Jasper, and she tried to pay attention, she really did. But, all the time he was asking Tommy what happened, and running gentle fingers over the injury, and she was smiling and murmuring reassurance, her heart was breaking into a million tiny pieces.





Friday, February 26, 2016

Are you moving enough? Keeping track of your steps every day?? #Fitbit


*****
Were you one of the fitness freaks that asked Santa for the Fitbit this year (or another exercise gadget equally as cool?)

I did…

Being an Indie author is great. But don’t ever imagine it to be easy. Not only do we have to spend hours at our desks or with our laptops writing the darn manuscripts. Then we have to organize the cover, editors and formatting. Once we have all that done, the book is ready to be published. The work isn't even close to being finished. Now we need to promote it so readers know it’s even available, and again, that can take many hours.

For most of us, this takes place while sitting. Hours of cramped positions, pushing past the discomfort to get those words written or e-mails cleared. I’ve had days with headaches hovering and backaches looming and ignored all the discomforts because I was under deadline.

Then I found out about the Fitbit, and just the idea of setting myself an exercise goal every day, made it more of a challenge. Santa was good to me. After I found the sweet little gift under the tree and put it on, it let me know that I wasn’t as sedentary as I had thought. On a normal day, I do get my sought after 5,000 steps and on a really good day - at 10,000 steps - that old vibrating watch goes off and scares the living daylights outa me.

I love it!!

Every time it shocks me, I feel so terrific because I know I’ve been good to my body. In fact, I’ve been known to walk-in-place for those last few hundred steps just to be able to say – I DID IT!!!

Another plus, when you own a Fitbit, you can sign up on an App for your smartphone and it will keep track of your daily steps. Then each week, you’ll get an e-mail giving you your daily step average. It also tracks your total steps for the week (best day, worst day), total distance, stairs climbed and the calories you burned and… if you lost weight. I’m sorry I can’t tell you too much about that part because for me, the steps are all I tend to dwell on. I believe, you can even challenge another Fitbit owner if you wish and sign up on a competition.

Again for me, it’s all about my own goals. And I’m glad to say, that so far, it’s working!!

I’m moving!!

Do you have one of these doodads? Do you like it?




 

Monday, February 22, 2016

"Hold on for a great ride!!" ~ Can a review title get better than that? #mgtab






Recently, I did a series of excerpts from some of the author's books who’re in a box collection with me and I was utterly astounded at how much interest those posts garnered.


I started thinking that maybe I should share an excerpt from one of my books and see if the readers enjoy it in the same way.


So…here’s the first chapter of Special Agent Maximilian, my latest book.


Excerpt:


Chapter One


From the corner of his eye, Nik saw the redhead approaching, hair flying, face full of anger. He managed to duck in time to elude the fist aimed at his face, but the one that plowed into his belly caught him off guard.


“Maximilian Foster! Where the hell have you been? I’ve searched high and low for your sorry ass for more’n a month. Everyone thinks you’re dead. And where do I find you? Sauntering in the French market as if you haven’t a care in the world.”


Imprisoning her wrists before she did major damage seemed to be the most intelligent thing for Nik to do, but he hadn’t realized her skill. In seconds, she had him pinned to the wall of the shop next to where he stood—not wanting to hurt her, he’d let it happen.


“Lady, what the hell is wrong with you?” He stamped down on his rising frustration. What’s going on with this crazy dame?


“What’s wrong with me? What’s wrong with… are you kidding me? We’re partners, or have you forgotten that insignificant detail, and that it used to mean something?”


Ah! So this was Max’s partner, Maya Barnes. Now what the hell was he going to do? Recently, he’d made the decision to fake being his twin, pretend he was Max Foster. But maybe he’d gone and spoiled the chance. Thinking quickly, he attempted to recover lost ground.


“Maya? I’m sorry… I–I don’t remember. I don’t remember anything. I’ve been wandering around here praying something would be familiar. I’m sorry, I…” He choked on the word sorry since it wasn’t a word he was familiar with, but he knew his brother used it a lot. That stupid word, along with his twin’s winning smile, had no doubt gotten Max out of a lot of scrapes.


“Dammit, Max, don’t try using that idiotic grin on me. You know it doesn’t work. We’ve been hunting for you for weeks. One day you were there and the next you’d disappeared. I figured the Mosleys had gotten you once you’d let it out that we were on to them.”


Mosleys? She had it half right. They had been after Max, and in the end had put a hit on him. Only they weren’t a local gang as the department thought. It went a lot deeper than just New Orleans bad boys. Seemingly, Max had clued into their operation, which had led back to Los Angeles. And it hadn’t only been drugs. Nope! Things had gone deeper and dirtier than even he’d suspected.


Nik pretended a weakness he didn’t feel and let his body slouch to the side. At first her green sparklers flared with suspicion, then softness flooded her expression and she supported rather than shoved.


“Oh God, Max. I’m sorry. You really are in a bad way, aren’t you? Come on, let me help you. We’ll grab a cup of coffee and you can tell me what happened.”


 Playing this lady while she was pissed hadn’t bothered Nik whatsoever, but lying to her when those big eyes plied him with an affectionate pity was another thing altogether. What the hell was he to do now?


“I don’t really want coffee, Maya. Maybe I could just come to the office.”


Not taking his refusal seriously, Maya wrapped her arm around his body, clamped her fingers on his wrist and half dragged him through the open doors to a nearby table at CafĂ© du Monde. She led him to a seat and sat across from him. “Don’t be silly, you love coffee. Look, you’re a rotten son-of-a-bitch, but I’m glad to see you. I couldn’t believe you’d leave me high and dry, worrying myself sick about what could have happened. Now it all makes sense.”


Shaking his head, not understanding her logic, he just stared at her and waited. No doubt she’d enlighten him as to what she meant. He must have shown his lack of understanding because she assumed a disgusted look. “Stop being so dense! You might be a philandering S.O.B. and an unmitigated snob, but I’d never have believed you would treat me so shabbily. I guess I’m relieved to see I was right.”


“You’re relieved to know I can’t remember anything? That I woke up in the ditch with a lump the size of an extra-large egg on the back of my head? God save me from trying to analyze the labyrinth of a female’s mind.”


Maya sat with her mouth open; her eyes focused and didn’t utter a word. With a laser-like gaze, she drilled every spot of his face and then shook her head. “Even dressed like an army store reject, I’d swear you were Special Agent Maximilian Foster. Then you say something and I have to admit to having huge doubts. And just so you know, Max’d die before appearing in public looking like G.I. Joe.”


Nik had seconds to decide his future. To make up his mind if he was serious about going after the people who’d beaten his brother and left him broken, covered in blood and lying in a ditch. Guessing there had never really been a choice, he replied softly, “I’m sorry, Maya. You’re the first person I’ve remembered, even remotely. That is, I know your name, but that’s about it. You have to believe me when I tell you that I can’t remember anything after being struck. My own clothes were covered in blood and I got these cheap. After all, I only had ten bucks in my pocket—no wallet, no I.D. I’m a mess, and I guess I need your help.” Instinctively, watching the caring flood her face, he reached out his hand and she grasped his fingers and squeezed. Hard.


Her eyes, piercing green shards, speared him. “You lying piece of shit. I don’t know what your game is but you aren’t, and never could be, Max. Now who the hell are you and what’s going on?”


One of my favorite reviews!!!


I always enjoy Mimi Barbour book's her writing is always so good. Her books are always a hit and this one was another Hit. There is allot of humor and suspense, keep you on your toes till the end.... WOW this book is so GOOD. Special Agent Maximilian is a must read.....

I really wish I could give it more then five stars.... Get it today...



*****

I just gotta ask? Do you put excerpts of your own work on your blogs???

~*~*~*~

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Recently, I was asked for my best hint that made my author’s life easier!


***At a recent romance writer's workshop, each of us were asked what our best advice would be to help each other. This should have been my first suggestion - next post, I will share what I really said.
 
When I first decided I wanted a career as an author and not to just have a book with my name on it, like everyone else facing this precipice, I had to make a lot of serious choices.

The decisions that faced me mostly had to do with publishing a professional product and not an amateurish piece of work that would end up being an embarrassment. I had friends who’d taken the cheap route and after the first few one and two star reviews, their warnings were enough. Either do it right or not at all.

So, I worked out a budget for each book with the three main costs being editing, covers and formatting. Hells bells, when I remember how much I spent over the years in turning out properly formatted novels, I have to shake my head and swallow the cuss words. And… all I got in return for my $100+ per book was a mobi file for Amazon.

Now, because my formatter had a lot of other clients, I didn’t feel comfortable in asking him to upgrade the “Also author of…” page of my backlist and so I often felt frustrated that my readers weren’t being kept up to date on my newly published work.

A few years, and twenty-five books later, I decided to spread myself to all the venues available and not just stay with Amazon. When I shared the good news with my formatter, he dropped a bombshell that blew me right out of my comfy little sand patch… you know the one where my head was deeply buried.

Because I’d been with him for so many years, he’d only charge me another $40 per book for the epub format which was necessary to carry out these plans.

Whaaa!!!

As much as I hated the idea of having to force-feed myself yet another technical procedure that would tax my non-techie brain, I knew it needed to be done. I would have to take on the job of formatter myself……groan!!

Thankfully, the way the world works (for me anyway) when you search, you find. After asking other authors at a local workshop how they handled this part of their business, one very smart friend explained about Pressbooks.

It couldn’t be true! How had I missed out on learning about this earlier? Twenty-five books earlier? She explained the concept and I admit to feeling pessimistic. Copy and Paste into a template. Only costs $20 for three formats and as many copies as you want. You can get the paperback format there also for an added reasonable cost. And… they have monthly sales coupons? Well for heaven’s sake… which planet had I been occupying?

That very day, I went home and opened an account. I’ll admit it took a couple of phone calls to my friend, watching the tutorial more than once and with the paperback pdf’s, a few e-mails to the very helpful Pressbook’s administrator. But every time I push that export button and get those lovely, three formatted copies (mobi, epub & pdf) of my updated work, I once again thank my guardian angel for sending me to that workshop.

And… now that I’ve set up every one of my books on Pressbook, I have a wonderful library of my work, altogether on one platform where each book’s information is easy to maintain and always just a click away. If my computer crashes, no problem, my work is safe.

So there’s my hint. Did it interest you? Or are you still taking the hard road and paying someone else and giving up control?
 
****
 

Friday, February 12, 2016

Are you an editing fool? One more read…




Gotta edit it one more time... I’ve never had that problem and I wished I’d have been more so. Back in the early days, I relied totally on my editor with Wild Rose Press and she came through for me every time.

She made sure each word was spelled correctly, that the punctuation was perfected and that there would be nothing to embarrass me once they’d published the book.

So easy…
I loved it.

Then, I went Indie.

Now it was up to me to make sure I had the right editor and I did that. In fact, I got two and then a proof-reader. With a couple of read-throughs from me, I thought it we’d be safe. What I didn’t take into consideration was that though these people made sure my words were correct, none of them were there to point out that the sentence wasn’t strong enough. That the way I had worded something could be a lot more intense, less passive, etc..

They weren’t paid to mess with my words or my voice, but without someone who made me aware there were weak areas, I sailed through book after book thinking I had it covered.

Then, something happened without me even being aware. I... was getting better. As I wrote these books, I seemed to know when I hadn’t given enough detail or hadn’t worded it as strongly as it should have been. Like tiny lightbulbs flipping on as I wrote, I could clearly see when something needed attention.

What a high!! I loved it.

But… a person should never get complacent.

Recently, I had a friend, a very good author read the first three chapters of the first book of my new up-coming series called Mob Tracker, and she noted quite a few weak places that I had let pass. True, it had only been my first draft but I truthfully don’t know if I’d have picked up on these mistakes or not.

It was a wake-up call and I’m now driven to be even better, more careful. And you know what, as I’m writing the next book in the Undercover FBI series, Special Agent Kandice, I’ve found myself being more attentive. I figure it’s called developing your voice or maybe strengthening your craft and you know what? I hope it never stops!!

I guess it doesn't matter what a person does, right? This phenomena should still be happening no matter what your career.

*****

 

 

Monday, February 8, 2016

The Music of Us - Another compelling romance in the collection: A Touch of Passion #atop


The Music of Us
 
by
 
Uvi Poznansky
 
 
EbookKindle  Nook  Apple  Kobo  Smashwords
PaperbackAmazon  Barnes&Noble
Audiobook:  Amazon  Audible  iTunes
 
 
 
Excerpt:
“You,” said Mrs. Horowitz, turning upon me, “yes, I’m talking to you! What’s your idea of the future? What are you planning to make of yourself, young man?”

This question, I’m afraid, touched on a sensitive nerve. My father had pressed hard on me to achieve his dream: becoming a lawyer. Naturally there was no saying no to him. So before graduating from high school I had told him that I had registered at the university and would be majoring in Law, according to his wishes—but somehow I had neglected to mention that the closest I had ever come to registering was flipping through an outdated course catalog, while sitting on the toilet and dreaming about something else.

Being drafted the next year was a lucky thing. It had saved me from having to admit to him that I had lied. I had looked forward to military service. Not only had it promised travel, fun, and adventure but also relieved me of the old man’s constant nagging.

So, what was I planning to make of myself? That was the question I thought I had escaped answering—until now.

I glanced at Natasha, hoping she can, somehow, get me out of this uneasy spot in the interrogation, but all I could spot in her eyes was a flash of curiosity. She, too, wanted to hear what I might say. I recalled her first letter, in which she had written, “I enjoyed your stories and would love to read more of them. Your words touched something in me... You, Lenny, you should become a writer.”

Well, I thought, how hard can that be? And expecting to make an impression on both of them I said, “I’m going to be a writer.”

“No, really,” said Mrs. Horowitz.

“Really!”

“Have you even been published?”

“No—”

“Of course not. Have you written anything worth reading?

“Well, not yet, but—”

“You interested in drama? Comedy? Some other genre?”

On a whim I said, “Drama.”

“Why drama?”

“Because,” I said, “drama is like comedy but without the jokes.”

Mrs. Horowitz was far from amused. She gave me a severe look. “I suppose,” she said, “that your jokes are nothing to write home about.”

“Telling them is a dangerous proposition,” I said, with a shrug. “If no one laughs at the punch line, that’s the end of the story.”

She said nothing. Instead she took a deep breath, perhaps to control a sense of contempt, so that—except for the vein pulsing at the side of her forehead, under the elaborately teased hair—it would not overtake her.

“So,” I went on to say, “drama is safer.”

“Listen here, Dostoyevsky,” she said. “Let me tell you: the last thing my daughter needs is to be involved with a would-be writer.”

I gasped as Natasha cried, “Mama!”

Which did nothing to slow Mrs. Horowitz down. “In every family,” she said, “one genius is enough, no, on second thought, it’s more than enough. Two are a recipe for disaster, because they’ll end up starving to death and blaming each other for it.”

I thought of saying that having died of starvation would not leave these geniuses enough juice for exchanging accusations, as there could be no pointing fingers from beyond the grave, but to be on the safe side I decided not to offer my opinion on the subject.

Mrs. Horowitz went on. “As long as I’m here, Natasha can rest assured that I’ll sacrifice myself not only to advance her career and her fame but also to put food on the table and provide for shelter overhead. But I won’t live forever—”

“Ma, please—”

“So now,” said Mrs. Horowitz, “what are your intentions, may I ask, regarding my daughter?”

Surprised that she leveled this question at me, which she did before I even had a real opportunity to have a conversation with Natasha, I said, “Mrs. Horowitz, let me assure you about my intentions. They’re utterly serious—”

“That’s what I’m afraid of,” she said, waving her hand at me. “I’m not going to allow Natasha to marry anyone coming off the street, even if he arrived in a luxury car, especially not someone who has some vague dreams of writing drama for no better reason than he’s no good at jokes.”

Before I could answer that no one had been discussing marriage yet, and it was much too early to bring up the subject now, “Mama,” said the girl, in her most stubborn tone, “I can make up my own mind, thank you very much.”

With that, Natasha sat down at her piano, raised her hands over the keys, and with great gusto, pounded them till the upside-down skyline of Manhattan trembled in the polished surface.

Mrs. Horowitz marched off to the kitchen, leaving us alone at long last.

“Play for me, Natasha,” I said.

She turned her eyes to me, and the green light in them flickered into a smile.

“What kind of music d’you like?” she asked.

To which I said, “I’d like to know what you like.”

“My favorite is The Symphony No. 5 in C minor by Ludwig van Beethoven,” she said, “but this is not the right moment for it. I know! I’ll play a special song for you. Papa used to sing it to me, when I was little.”

The first notes came softly, tugging at my heart. They brought back long-forgotten Yiddish words, in the voice of my mother. “Bei mir bist du shein,” she sang to me. “Bei mir host du chein. Bei mir bist du alles oif di velt.”

Natasha closed her eyes, surrendering herself to the music. She started swaying slightly as she played and from time to time, tipped her head backwards, letting it wash over her face, her lips. Fascinated I found myself drawing nearer. By the rosy blush that spread up her cheeks I knew that she could sense my closeness.

In her soft, velvety voice, she started singing, “To me you are beautiful, to me you have grace, to me you are everything in the world.”

From the direction of the kitchen, her Ma chimed in, singing, “I've tried to explain, bei mir bist du schoen.”

And in a sudden elation I hummed under my breath, “So kiss me, and say that you will understand.”

With the last notes still hovering in midair, she swung her knees around the piano bench and lifted her face to me. I raised her to her feet and gathered her to my heart. Then, as she wrapped her arms around my shoulders, I felt the heat awakening from within, rising recklessly in both of us.

Drawing me to her, Natasha leaned backwards over the piano. To the last vibrations dying in its belly I bent over her, over the reflection of the skyline of New York, which rippled in reverse across the polished, black surface around us, and I kissed her.
Uvi Poznansky:
·         Amazon
·         Audible
·         iTunes
·         Barnes & Noble
·         Facebook
·         Twitter
·         Smashwords
·         Kobo
·         SoundCloud
 

This beautiful book is part of the collection called

A Touch of Passion (99cents)



  Amazon:  Kobo:   Smashwords:  B&N  iBooks:

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Concealed in my Heart - An award-winning novel by @ReginaPucket #atop


 
Concealed in my Heart
 
by
 
Regina Puckett
 
 
 
 
Excerpt:

David held his daughter over his head. She squealed and reached for his hair for support. He cradled her back against his shoulder and looked accusingly at Charity. “I know what you’re doing. You want all the chips and salsa to yourself. You know it will take Suzette an eternity to eat and I won’t have a chance at the chips.”

Charity slung Suzette’s diaper bag over her shoulder and opened the front door. “You’ve got that right, buddy. When you take the ladies out to eat, you pay in more ways than one. Come on. Let’s get this show on the road.”

David found a Mexican restaurant that had an outdoor patio. He was feeding Suzette the hated green beans, when a flash went off. Both David and Charity saw the reporter at the same time. David had his long legs threaded through Suzette’s high chair so he could get close enough to feed her. His position made it impossible to get his legs untangled before the reporter ran out of the restaurant. Charity still had a chip loaded with salsa raised to her open mouth. She set the chip back on her plate.

“Well, that hasn’t happened in a while. I wonder what the headlines will be this time. Actress overeats?”

David returned his attention to the green beans Suzette had spit out for the hundredth time. He patiently spooned them back in. “You might as well eat this young lady. Daddy is not going to give up as easily as you think he is. I can spoon them in as fast as you can spit them out.”

Suzette tested his theory by spitting them back out.

David finally took the time to look up. “What can they write? We’re just having lunch. I can’t imagine what they could come up with from that to be as bad as they have been in the past.”

Charity took the spoon away from David and spooned the green beans back into Suzette’s mouth. She could see that he was suddenly too tense for the job at hand. She didn’t mean to add to his tension, but he had to know the truth. “You do realize that’s the same cameraman from Dallas. The one where if the cops ever asked, you didn’t destroy his film?”

David took the chip loaded with salsa off of Charity’s plate. He looked where the cameraman had been before stuffing the chip into his mouth. It wasn’t until he’d chewed and swallowed that he answered. “I’m not letting it ruin our day out.” He grabbed another chip. “I know of a place near here that sells the best ice cream, and if you’re really nice to me, I will ask them to add sprinkles to yours.”

Charity wiped Suzette’s face and beamed. “I love sprinkles. If you promise to have them add some whipped topping, I’m in.”

They exchanged grins and then he did the strangest thing. He ran the pad of his thumb across the corner of her mouth and then he studied the spot, as if lost in a trance. When he finally looked down at his plate of food she reached up to feel if she had something on her face. When she didn’t find anything, she tried to shrug it off as just another thing about David that she no longer understood. But when she caught him looking at her again, and as if he had never really seen her before, her stomach did a strange little unsettling flip and for a second, she couldn’t breathe.

Fortunately, the rest of lunch, and the trip to the ice cream parlor, went without further incident from the cameraman, or between her and David. Suzette fell asleep in the car on the way home, and as soon as they were in the house, Charity was able to get her tucked into bed without her even opening her eyes again. Suzette had such a sweet innocent expression on her sleeping face. Charity just stood and studied her for several minutes before finally seeking David out.

 When she found him in the living room he had made them both a tall glass of iced lemonade. He had a glass in each hand, and the moment he saw her enter the room, he nodded in the direction of the deck. “It’s nice outside so why don’t we go out and enjoy the view?”

It was a simple question, but standing there and seeing how happy he looked for the first time in such a long time gave her pause. She studied his face for a moment before nodding and then following him out onto the deck. Once outside, he handed her a glass and then waited until she was seated before he sat in the chair next to her. There had been a time when she wouldn’t have noticed how close David sat, but something over the course of the week had changed between them. She tried replaying all the events over in her mind. Nothing stood out over anything else, nevertheless, there had been subtle changes that had somehow altered their relationship.

When his knee accidently touched hers, in an absurd overreaction, she jerked her leg away as if the contact had burned her. To cover that up, she began bouncing her leg as if that had been her intention all along. She suddenly felt as if she had been transferred right back in time to junior high years when everything had felt awkward and overdramatized. Finally, to put some distance between them, she stood and walked over to the railing.

That might have worked but after a moment he came over and stood next to her. He leaned his forearms on the railing and looked out at the ocean. “I love this view. When nothing else makes sense in my life, just looking at the ocean reminds me that I’m just a speck in the universe and my problems must be just as insignificant as I am.”

She mimicked his stance and stared out at the ocean too. It was such a peaceful feeling to be there. After a moment, she closed her eyes and breathed in deeply, trying to absorb everything about this serene moment. So many things in her life had been so uncertain, but for some reason it felt as if maybe everything was falling into its rightful place and as it should be.

She might have stood that way all night but David spoke. “A penny for your thoughts.”

When Charity opened her eyes, he was so near and they were almost nose to nose. Instead of backing away, as she might have done with anyone else, somehow, she didn’t feel as if he was invading her space. She was so at peace with everything and it didn’t seem odd for him to be so close, but very companionable. “They’re not worth a penny, I’m afraid.”

He flicked the end of her nose. “Then give them up, girl. You were a million miles away from here a second ago.”

She grinned shyly and shrugged. “I feel safe.” She blushed and then quirked an eyebrow. “It sounds silly saying it out loud. I haven’t felt safe in a longtime, but for some reason, standing right here, I feel safe and I have no idea why.” She chuckled and rolled her eyes. Not able to meet his eyes any longer, she turned to stare at the darkening sky.

He turned too, but bumped her shoulder with his. After a moment, he leaned over closer and whispered, “I feel safe too.”

****
 
This beautiful book is part of the collection called

A Touch of Passion (99cents)
 

 Amazon:  Kobo:   Smashwords:  B&N  iBooks:
 
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Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Jack Who? by @LiGillis A fabulous addition to the box collection - A Touch of Passion #atop



Jack Who
 
by
Lisa Gillis
 
 



 
Excerpt:
Halting at the end of the hallway, she took in Jack sprawled on the couch. Just like last night, he looked as if he had occupied that spot a hundred times over. Despite the angry sparks flying between them last night, all day long, sparks of a different kind had kindled between them. Their flirtatious behavior had been rampant enough that even Tristan, an oblivious innocent child, had noticed a couple of times.

Now, intermittent splashes and happy hums sounded from the bathroom. Their son was occupied, and before she could talk herself out of the impulse, she went with it. Ignoring Jack’s perplexed look when she advanced so quickly, she dropped to the couch. With first one knee, and then the other, she straddled him. Using her weight to hold him, she closed each of her hands vice-like on his upper arms.

“Mmh, Mariss, what’s up…” In keeping with the surreal day, a day that felt like they were a couple, a family, the husky, sensual pitch of his words did not let her down.

“Paybacks.” Readily, she spoke against his lips.

Her tongue traced his lips, teasing the corners, and her teeth tugged at his bottom one. A deep rumble in his throat drove her to deepen the kiss, and he remained compliant, participating without taking over. It was fun and fiery being the one to plunder, to pace things, and she kissed and kissed, staring into those dark eyes whenever their eyes would blink open at the same time.

When she was able to speak, she softly jeered, “You have fun by yourself last night?”

Surprise widened his eyes, but he didn’t miss a beat of this new verbal game. “Yeah. I did. Told you, I have a good imagination.” Studying her face in that heated way he had, he taunted right back, “You?”

“Me what?” Her confused inquiry mumbled into the next kiss. So good. His tongue felt so good… “Mmh…”

The muscles in his arms jumped when she retreated from his mouth to taste the base of his throat, and instinctively, with last night’s teasing in the back of her mind, she held him fast, brushing her lips to a late evening rough jaw as he spoke.

“Did you pick up where we left off? Mariss?”

Indignantly, she straightened and then immediately dropped her imprisoning weight back to her hands. “I went to sleep!”

“Ouch! That’s cold…” He grumbled, and his eyes fell longingly to her lips.

“You are cold.” Her reply was chastising, but she couldn’t refuse the kiss he wanted, and she returned her mouth to his.

“I feel hot…” The whisper opened his lips, and her tongue seized the opportunity to slip through again.

This had begun as a game to leave him wanting as he had done her last night, but it was becoming impossible to pull away. When at last she managed it, whispering a mocking, “Goodnight Jack,” the biceps beneath her hand flexed. The amusement in his eyes, and his sudden movement had her thinking twice about the soundness of her plan.

No matter how quickly she released and attempted to get away, his reflexes would be faster. The sardonic light in his gaze, as he assessed her plight, confirmed this.

On a resigned sigh, she breathed, “You’re just going to grab me, aren’t you?”

“Damn straight,” his soft, husky answer rebounded, and a smile danced mischievously in his expression, not unlike Tristan’s when he had once gelled Bally’s hair into spikes.

Choosing that very moment in the hope that he would not expect her to escape right away, she used her hands as a pivot point to leap from the couch.

With the swift reflexes of a tiger, he made a successful grab the second she let up. Like a gator, he promptly rolled, trapping her between him and the back of the sofa. Vice-like, he pinned her and while stealing a kiss, draped a leg over hers enough to continue the roll until he was on top. Wild heartbeats slammed into her rib cage. Already breathless from the struggle, she completely lost her breath when he continued this kiss.

“Let me up…” She shifted her mouth enough to speak, and unwilling to gracefully lose, bucked against him for good measure.

“No…Uh uh…” He spoke against her ear. Catching the lobe between his teeth, he teased it with his tongue.

“Mmh… Now I see why you have a sex consent contract thing…” Her shameless words were light, but he instantly brought his face back to hers.

“Mariss, my honey, will you shut up about that paper…”

‘My honey.’ The endearment sounded so sweet from his lips, and she searched his face.

Tristan laughed in his playing, the sound echoing loudly from the tiled bathroom, shattering the spell and busting the brink they found themselves on. Grudgingly, Jack moved. Sitting up, he stared reflectively into the stained glass shade of a lamp, and when he spoke, it was not anything she expected to hear.

“A while back, some girl claimed rape. Turns out money was all it took to make it go away. She took the first measly offer.” Hastily, he assured when his eyes took in her face, “I didn’t. I swear.”
 
****
 
This beautiful book is part of the collection called

A Touch of Passion (99cents)

 
Amazon: Kobo:  Smashwords: B&N iBooks:
 
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