Friday, November 29, 2013

Saved by a Rake

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Title – Saved by a Rake

Author – Em Taylor

Genre – Regency Romance (Historical)

Publication Date – November 22, 2013

PublisherAuthor

Cover Artist – Veronica Fernandez






Saved by a Rake - Book Cover


SYNOPSIS 

When Lady Rebecca Eversley is left ravished by the Earl of Newthorpe and facing ruination, she has the choice to point her pretty little nose in the air and face the gossips of the Ton or scurry off to the country to live out her life as an old maid. When she meets Lord Daniel Ramsey, a notorious rake, she decides on the former course of action.



Daniel has been given an ultimatum, marry before his father dies or lose the majority of his inheritance money. Rebecca seems the perfect candidate, especially once rumours about her start to circulate in the drawing rooms of Mayfair.



When Newthorpe is found dead on the morning of their wedding, the people they care about find themselves suspects in the case. Who murdered Newthorpe and can Rebecca ever get over what he did to her?



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EXCERPT
As his lips briefly touched hers, the carriage jolted, pushing him closer to her. He caught her around the waist to ensure she did not bounce off the seat, then, without thinking, covered her mouth with his.
He noted a moment’s hesitation from her before she moved her lips and reached up to tangle her gloved fingers in his curls. Tentatively she touched her tongue against his, causing him to stifle a groan. He had been without a woman for over a month and now his pretty little wife had her arms around him, kissing him as if she had done it a thousand times. She was a quick learner as she explored his mouth with her tongue, pressing herself closer to him.
Devil take it. He had been struggling all day to stop himself becoming aroused. Her wedding gown had been low cut and her stays showed her breasts off perfectly. He had been distracted throughout the service and the wedding breakfast as images of disrobing her later had flitted through his mind. He wanted to see those breasts again.
He unfastened the three buttons on her pelisse, peeling the material away to her side, then pulled out of the kiss and began to pepper light kisses along her jawline. God, he wanted her, and he was most definitely aroused now.
He kissed her neck and was about to place his hand over that beautiful inviting orb, when he sensed her tensing. He pulled away slowly, tugging the material of her pelisse back over her. When he looked into her eyes, they were bright with confusion, passion and fear, all clearly warring within her. He cursed himself for being too impatient. Then he cursed Newthorpe for what he had done and could not help thinking that death was too good for the blaggard.
“No. That’s the only word you ever have to say and I will stop,” he said simply.
“I am sorry, my lord. I just expected some time before… well I expected to wait until we were in the coaching inn tonight.”
“Yes, of course. It was very impatient of me. I beg your forgiveness.”
Rebecca nodded and looked out the window.
The streets of London rushed by as they headed for the Great North Road. He studied the view out of the other window, and they sat in silence for a long time. Eventually Rebecca spoke in a small voice which sounded as if she was on the verge of tears.
“I fear I will not make you a very good wife if a mere kiss frightens me.”
He turned and took her hand in his. He wanted her to be comfortable and not think he was going to pounce on her and ravish her at any given opportunity.
“I have no doubt that you will make a wonderful wife, Rebecca. You just need time and patience and I have an abundance of both.”
She turned large, tear-filled eyes towards him. “You should take a mistress as soon as we reach Scotland.”
He could not possibly have heard correctly. She was giving him permission to have a mistress? Surely not. But her mouth was set in a firm line as if she had made up her mind. A stab of hurt hit him. She thought of him as a rake who would be unfaithful.
He pursed his lips and considered her. What should he do? He wanted to rail at her and tell her he had no intention of being unfaithful. He had taken vows only a few hours previously and yet now she was giving him permission to break them. But maybe the idea of him having a mistress brought her comfort. She was clearly terrified of intimacy between a husband and wife.
“We shall discuss it once we reach Scotland, my lady. I have no wish to think beyond our present journey.”
“Do you not see that I can only ever tolerate the marriage bed for the sake of giving you an heir,” she wailed, pulling her hand away from his. “He ruined me in more ways than you can ever know.”
“You are only ruined if you allow him that power. A skilful lover could make you feel very different about certain aspects of a marriage.”
“Well, I have heard enough tales to know that you are a skilful lover, Lord Ramsey. But I think you should save it for your mistresses.” Her tone was almost venomous but he ignored it, knowing that it was fear that drove her.
She turned her head to look out of the window again. He was at a complete loss. She thought him almost as bad as Newthorpe. Well, not quite but she did not think he would be faithful. A long silence stretched out between them as he considered what to say to her. Her back was rigid, and she swiped at her cheek with one gloved hand.
“What he did to you…”
“What he did has destroyed me, and I am not sorry that he is dead. I wish I had been the one to kill him.”
“Please, Rebecca…”
She burst into tears and fished in her reticule for a handkerchief, he presumed. He held his out to her and with a large sob she accepted it. He untied her bonnet and threw it onto the seat opposite before gathering her in his arms.
She tried to move out of his grip but this time he held firm, knowing that she would accept his comfort, which she did, weeping as she buried her face in his coat.
As her sobs turned into sniffles, which turned into silence then light snuffles of sleep, he held her and wondered how he was going to help his beautiful young wife over her fear of physical love.

My Review:

If you are into historical romances with great sex scenes, buy this book.  Daniel is absolutely swoon-worthy, and Rebecca is a likable, relatable heroine.  The book was well edited and well-written.  The conflict is subtle, not thrown at the reader and shoved down their throats.  The ton is actually sort of kind in this Regency, where usually it is a vile, hateful antagonist.  I enjoyed it immensely.  While waiting for the other shoe to drop, I really enjoyed the play between the characters in this story, and the well-drawn secondary characters.  And then the other shoe fell, and I was actually surprised (maybe because I didn't read the blurb, I don't know).
This was a refreshing read for me, as the last Regency I read left me wondering what was wrong with the world we live in.  This was wonderful.  Thanks, Ms. Taylor.




AUTHOR BIO: 

Em was born and brought up in the Central Belt of Scotland and still lives there. She was told as a child she had an over active imagination—as if that is a bad thing. She’s traded her dreams of owning her own island, just like George in the Famous Five to hoping to meet her own Mr Darcy one day. But her imagination remains the same.



Unfortunately, Em was put off reading and writing by school and although she rediscovered her love of reading many years ago, she only tried her hand at writing again in 2011. After a year of writing fan fiction, she wrote an original short story for an anthology. This was followed up with two more shorts and 4 novella length books, all published under a pen name. Having fallen in love with a new sub-genre, courtesy of books by Mary Balogh and Lynsay Sands, she decided to try her hand at her new favourite genre for reading—regency.



Having bitten the bullet, she feels she has found her home in the 19th century, and it does give her an excuse to watch Colin Firth in a pair of buff breeches and riding books ad infinitum.



STALKER LINKS: 



GIVEAWAY 
$50/ £50 Amazon Gift Certificate 

Thursday, November 28, 2013






Release Date: 26th November 2013

Synopsis

Life can be a bitch but love can get you through any storm.

Madison Cole’s family is the Storm Motorcycle Club. Her father is the President and her brother is the VP. She grew up surrounded by bikers, crime and violence. Two years ago she walked away from her family and the world they live in. Her soul was shattered, her heart was broken and she had an addiction she couldn't shake. She picked up the pieces and put herself back together. Now her family wants her back. The club is being threatened and they send a club member to return her home to safety; the one person that could destroy everything she has worked so hard to build.

Jason Reilly has sacrificed a lot for the motorcycle club he calls family. Two years ago he made the biggest sacrifice of all; he gave up the woman he loved for them. Now he is being sent to bring her back and he is conflicted. He thought he was over her but discovers their connection is as strong as ever. Their love was all-consuming, passionate and fiery. It was also their undoing and he doesn't know if either of them is strong enough to battle the demons that ripped them apart, to find love again. 

Madison and Jason are brought back together by a force out of their control; one that pushes them to a breaking point. Can they overcome their past and discover a love worth fighting for or will the harsh reality of their world finally and completely break them both?



Buy Links:




Excerpt

I grabbed my
purse and headed outside to go and buy lunch.
J was on the phone, but saw me come outside and signalled for me to
wait.
“I’m going to
buy lunch, J.  And I only get an hour so
I don’t have time to wait for you,” I said, tersely.  He kept talking and scowled at me.  I turned and started to walk away from him,
towards the cafe where I always bought lunch.
I could hear
him muttering something into the phone and then he must have ended his call
because he went silent.  Then, he barked,
“Madison!”
The last thing
I wanted to do was stop for him, but there was something in his tone; a ‘don’t
fuck with me’ command.  So I stopped, and
turned around to look at him.  Oh,
my.  He was shitty. 
He stalked to
where I was and got in my face.  “Why the
fuck do you have to be so difficult about this?” He was fuming.
Well, I could
see him, and raise him in his anger.
“Maybe it has something to do with the way Scott has gone about
this.  And the fact that he sent you!”
He
flinched.  It was only for a second, and
most people wouldn’t have even noticed it.
But I knew J, and I saw it.  It
surprised the fuck out of me.  “Well
then, it looks like we’ve got some shit to sort out, babe, because I’m not
going anywhere.”
“I don’t want
to sort shit out with you.  That ship
sailed two fucking years ago, J,” I spat.
He gripped my
arm, pulling me closer, “No, it fucking didn’t,” he growled, eyes blazing, “And
you can’t deny there’s still something here.
I feel it and I know you feel it too.”
I laughed.  No, actually, I cackled.  “You wanna fuck, J?  I can feel that, and, yeah, if you wanna go there, I’m all for it.  But don’t mistake my desire for your cock for
anything else.”





About the Author

Nina Levine is an Aussie writer who writes stories about hot, alpha men and the tough, independent women they love. You won't find any whiny, spineless women in Nina's books and you certainly won't find weak men. 

A warning though, you will find hot, dirty sex, lots of swearing, occasional violent encounters and men and women who live fast and love hard.

Nina's debut book Storm will be releasing in November 2013. It is based around the Storm Motorcycle Club and is the first book in an MC series.

Connect with Nina:  Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Pinterest


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Monday, November 18, 2013

J. Kathleen Cheney



Today, I'm conquering Createspace while I catch up on my blog stuff.  Monday's author mingle spotlight is on J. Kathleen Cheney.  I'm really looking forward to meeing her.  I think I'm looking forward to picking brains of the other authors almost, if  not more, than meeting the readers in the area.  Okay, that's a lie. I really want to meet Michelle, and anybody else that's planning to attend.  But I really want to pick Kathleen's brain on creating a fantasy world in fiction.  That just sounds fun.



BLURB: 

For two years, Oriana Paredes has been a spy among the social elite of the Golden City, 

reporting back to her people, the sereia, sea folk banned from the city’s shores....



 When her employer and only confidante decides to elope, Oriana agrees to accompany her 

to Paris. But before they can depart, the two women are abducted and left to drown. Trapped 

beneath the waves, Oriana’s heritage allows her to survive while she is forced to watch her only 

friend die.



 Vowing vengeance, Oriana crosses paths with Duilio Ferreira—a police consultant who has 

been investigating the disappearance of a string of servants from the city’s wealthiest homes. 

Duilio also has a secret: He is a seer and his gifts have led him to Oriana.



 Bound by their secrets, not trusting each other completely yet having no choice but to work 

together, Oriana and Duilio must expose a twisted plot of magic so dark that it could cause the 

very fabric of history to come undone....





Snippet:

     Humming with the sound of moving water, the pipes on the second floor told Duilio his mother's new companion had drawn a bath, which served his purposes well.  He had questions that needed answering, and catching her in her bath would give him the leverage he needed.  She wouldn't be able to deny who she was.
It might be improper, but it was expedient.  He could apologize later.
     But he had to smooth his butler's injured consequence first.  "This has nothing to do with you, Cardenas.  I merely suspect she would prefer to hold both copies."
     Cardenas wasn't happy about surrendering one of his precious keys.  "And if I should need to get in there, to inspect the maids' work, sir?"
     "It's only for a short time, Cardenas," Duilio said soothingly.  "I'll give it two weeks.  If she's comfortable with the arrangement by then, I'll ask her to return the key to you."
     "As you wish, Mr. Ferreira."  Cardenas frowned as he worked the brass key off his ring.
     Duilio couldn't blame him.  It wasn't the loss of a key that bothered the man, but the implied loss of control.  Cardenas didn't want to give up the ability to check on the other servants in the household, particularly not after the incident with the footman who'd robbed them.  Fortunately, the butler wasn't the sort to abuse his power.  Duilio slipped the key inside his coat pocket where it clinked against the master copy he already held.  "Thank you, Cardenas."
     The perturbed butler took his leave and headed down the stairs to the first floor.
     Duilio chewed on his lower lip.  Am I actually going to do this?  He took a deep breath and knocked on the bedroom door.  When he got no response, he listened carefully and then let himself in.
     It was Alessio's old room--too masculine for a lady's companion, perhaps, but there hadn't been time to make changes.  It had a private bath, as did none of the other empty rooms; if he was right about her, she would appreciate that.
     Duilio strode across the rug and pressed one ear against the door to the bathing room, but didn't hear any movement within.  He unlocked the bathroom door, and once inside, gazed down into the oversized porcelain tub.
     Miss Paredes lay under the surface of the water, her eyes closed.  The jangling of the keys must have been muffled by the liquid, because she apparently hadn't heard him enter.
     Duilio stared down at her, mesmerized.  A flush of heat surged through is body.  She was…stunning.
He'd admired her figure before, but unclothed she was as spectacular as he'd imagined.  Her breasts with their mauve-tipped nipples were rounded but not overlarge.  Her waist didn't owe its trimness to corsetry, and her hips flared down to nicely curved thighs.  His hands practically itched to touch her.  He'd never been attracted to small delicate females.  Oriana Paredes was the sort of woman he preferred, tall and strong and able to keep up with him in…
     Oh, Good Lord!  What was he thinking?  She was employed in his household.  He turned partially away from her, mentally clamping down on his desire.
     He was grateful she seemed unaware of his presence, that she hadn't opened her eyes to catch him gaping at her like a schoolboy in a whorehouse.  He must be flushed all the way to his hairline.  He peeked at her again out of the corner of one eye, firmly reminding himself he was purportedly a gentleman.
      Her hair spread about her head, the reddish tinge transmuted to a burgundy glow.  Her skin looked different in the water as well, the paleness of her face become an opal-like iridescence.  Below her breasts, her skin changed to a shimmering silver, a perfect imitation of scales running all the way down to her toes, the reason sailors claimed sereia had fish tails.
     Her hands moved slowly through the water, no longer obscured by an old woman's mitts.  Translucent webbing showed between her fingers, pearly skin stretching between them up to the last knuckle, so thin he might be able to see through it in the light.
     The expression on her face reminded him of paintings of the saints enraptured in the presence of God.            She was singing to herself, the notes muted by the water.  On each side of her neck, pink-edged gills vibrated with the sound.
     But that song could entrap him if she raised her head above the surface.  It was said men would throw themselves into the sea on hearing it.  And while he wouldn't mind staring at that silver-gilded body for the rest of the afternoon, the last thing he needed was to be enslaved to her, so he discreetly tapped on the side of the tub with one booted foot.
     Still underwater, her dark eyes opened wide.
     Miss Paredes sat up in a rush, setting the water sloshing about.  She scooted back against the side of the tub and pressed her hands over her neck to hide her gills.  That forced her breasts together, unfortunately obscuring his view of them at the same time.  "I locked the door," she said, her shaky voice betraying alarm.  "How did you get in here?"
     Duilio spotted a towel on the table near the vanity stand and retrieved it.  He was not going to blush.  "I have the keys, of course."
     Selkies rarely showed any discomfiture over nudity.  That French book he'd once read suggested the sereia shared that view, if he recalled correctly.  Her choice of covering her gills--rather than anything else--reinforced the notion.  Even so, it would be ungentlemanly to stare at her bared body, no matter how lovely.       He held out the towel, resolutely reminding himself to keep his eyes on her face.
     "What are you doing in here?"  She rose from the water, giving him a glimpse of golden stippling along the outside of her thighs.  He couldn't see her dorsal stripe from that angle, supposedly one of a sereia's best features.  She snatched the towel from his hand and wrapped it about her body, keeping her back turned away from him the whole time.  Then she fixed him with a hard gaze, raising her brows to prompt an answer to her question.
     Duilio leaned back against the vanity stand and crossed one ankle over the other, trying to present a nonchalant façade.  "I suspected you were a sereia," he said in a mild tone. "I needed to be sure."
     "You could have asked," she said with asperity.
     Her teeth barely showed when she spoke.  Even though they looked like a human's teeth, he'd heard they were razor sharp.  He had the feeling she was considering biting him, so he kept his distance.  "You would have lied."
     She twisted her dripping hair into a knot with one webbed hand.  The movement gave him a better view of a yellowish discoloration encircling her forearms and wrists, faded bruises that might have come from being bound.  "It is unacceptable to take advantage of someone in your employ, sir," she said primly.
     He felt his cheeks burn again, but tried to ignore it.  "I haven't taken advantage of you," he said, "nor do I have any intention of doing so.  But we need to talk, and we can speak privately here without being interrupted."
     "And I expected that I could bathe privately here, sir," she snapped.  "Without being interrupted."


From a review by Kirkus,  "An ambitious debut from Cheney: part fantasy, part romance, part police procedural and part love letter to [Portugal] in the early 1900s."




BIO:

J. Kathleen Cheney is a former teacher and has taught mathematics ranging from 7th grade 

to Calculus, with a brief stint as a Gifted and Talented Specialist. Her short fiction has been 

published in Jim Baen's Universe, Writers of the Future, and Fantasy Magazine, among others, 

and her novella "Iron Shoes" was a 2010 Nebula Award Finalist. Her novel, "The Golden City" 

will come out from Penguin, November 5, 2013. 

Her website can be found at www.jkathleencheney.com



LINKS:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CheneyJKathleen

Twitter: @jkcheney

Website: www.jkathleencheney.com

____________________

The Golden City is available at:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0451417747/ref=ox_ya_os_product

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-golden-city-j-kathleen-cheney/

1114980111?ean=9780451417749

Walmart: http://www.walmart.com/ip/24056671













Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance


Expected
date of release: December 2, 2013





I
know I will never get over her. Watching her walk away with him ripped my heart
out and left it bleeding on the floor. But I can’t hide anymore. I have to face
my life without her.

Brad has been in love with Lisa for
as long as he can remember. One night years ago they took each other’s
virginity but while it was the best night of Brad’s life, for Lisa it was a way
to forget about Bobby. Or was it?

Brad
re-emerges right when Lisa needs him most. Only Brad knows everything about her
and when Lisa’s insecurities come to the surface the shoulder Lisa needs is
Brad’s. Now Brad has to decide if he has it in him to trust his heart.



I walk through the door into the crowded house, looks like the gangs all here and then some.  I look around and see all my friends but the person who sees me first is her mom, “Brad! So good to see you,” she hugs me, “Lisa will be so glad you’re here. She’s missed you.”

I don’t know what to say to that. I know that Lisa loves me like a brother but I want so much more with her, “I’ve missed her too.” It’s the truth, staying away has been the hardest thing I’ve ever done. I even took the boat over to Fire Island for a couple of weeks hiding out at my sister’s summer house. She was not happy about that until I started to fix the outside shower. Now she tells me I can use it anytime I want as long as I fix something each time I’m there. Her husband can’t fix shit, damn Ivy League pretty boy.

I turn back toward the party and suddenly Lisa is in my arms kissing my cheek and holding me tight, “Don’t do that again,” she tells me. “I missed you too much.” She is running her hands over my shoulders and through my hair and if I don’t get her off me soon she will know exactly how much I missed her.

I release her and put my hand in the pocket of my jacket, “Happy Birthday Lisa,” I pull out her gift and hand it to her. She smiles up at me but keeps her hand on my arm like she doesn’t want to let me go. Maybe she does feel more than friendship towards me.  I look into her eyes and hope she can’t see how much I want her.

She looks down at the box in her hand then back up to me, “Do you want me to open this now?”

I want to see her reaction but I don’t want an audience, “No later, after the party.”

“Does that mean you will stay ‘til everyone leaves?” her smile widens.

“If you want me to,” I can’t say no to her, I never could.

Then he comes up behind her pulling her back to him and extending his hand to me, “Brad, good to see you.”

I know he is staking his claim but he doesn’t have to remind me that Lisa is not mine. I have known that for a long time, “Bobby,” I can’t bring myself to say more than his name. I really want to yell at him to get his hands off of her but he has every right to touch her. She is his.


There's still time to read book one of the series:



Watch for it on Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and Apple!

































I
live in Northern New Jersey. I am a wife and mother of two girls. 


I have been an avid reader my whole life, I
cannot remember a Sunday afternoon that did not include my parents reading. We
had a huge bookshelf in our den with a diverse set of authors like Ayn Rand,
Stephen King, Mario Puzo & Danielle Steele. 




I have always had ideas and characters running
around my head but it took a few good friends to push me to start putting them
down on paper. 




I hope you enjoy my musings. Please feel free to
contact me I would love to hear from you.