Teaser Tuesday: A Peek of Sam & Gibson from BREAK ME DOWN

 

 

How about a little teaser from BREAK ME DOWN? This one is Sam (Tessa's BFF) and Gibson's (Kade's brother) story.

*Note: This is an unedited copy so may change or have typos that I missed.

Excerpt:

He squatted down and picked up the sanding machine. It’d been a while since he’d tackled any home improvement projects. His position as head of PR at Vandergriff kept him too busy. But when he’d first bought his house, it had been in pretty rough shape. He’d taken on weekend projects to get it how he wanted it. He’d learned a lot and messed up more. A handyman, he was not. But he understood the satisfaction Sam probably got from doing this herself. It could be cathartic.

“I don’t suggest you turn that on unless you know what to do with it,” Sam said from behind him.

He turned around, finding her at the bottom of the stairs, raven hair damp and twisted into a messy bun atop her head. Face scrubbed clean. She looked so young standing there. He was used to seeing her with her dark eyeliner and hair done in some quirky way. But this version of her was just as breath-stealing. He held up the sander. “Don’t turn it on, unless I know what to do with it. There’s a dirty joke in there.”

She smirked, some of that trademark attitude back, despite the lingering ghosts in her eyes. “So do you? Know what to do?”

“With a woman or home improvement equipment?”

“I already know you know what to do with a woman.”

He tilted his head. Flirty Sam. Yes. Yes, he liked this. “I’m not quite as skilled with machinery, but I can hold my own. Why? Gonna put me to work to earn my keep?”

She walked forward, her beat up Vans silent on the floors. “Hmm, now there’s an idea.”

The tone of her voice had slipped into a dangerous place, one he recognized. One his body recognized. “I don’t mind helping.”

She tucked her hands in the back of her jeans, her vintage No Doubt T-shirt stretching thin across her breasts as she considered him. “Is that right?”

He lost his focus for a moment just looking at her. Her shirt read 'Just A Girl', but that was far from the truth. She was so much more. A f**king mystery wrapped up in smarts and sex appeal and kink. And he’d only gotten to touch her once, but he hadn’t forgotten a second of it. He cleared his throat. “Yeah, I can help with whatever you need.”

Her smile was quick, not too big, but enough to punch him in the gut. “Those are mighty vague terms, Gib. You should know how dangerous that is in negotiations. I could make you strip naked and clean the bathroom grout with a toothbrush while I sip iced tea and watch.” 

He set the sander down and ran a hand over the back of his hair. She’d meant it as a joke. He tried to smile but only managed a tight grimace. Any image where he got on his knees for her pushed that forbidden button inside him. “Right.”

The silver ring in her eyebrow twitched up as if she knew exactly what he’d been thinking. “Nah, never mind. I know how you can help. LEAVE.”

 

Pre-order for $2.99: Amazon | B&N

 


Friday Reads: An Organizing Book For the Right Brainers & Visual Learners

OrganizingBook.jpg

So at the beginning of the school year, I get that same new year feeling I get when January rolls around, that feeling of a fresh start. And with that usually comes a focus on my two regular challenges: diet/exercise and organizing.

I'm back on track with the diet thing and have even started a private Facebook group called the Healthy Habit Exchange if you want to come join us and share tips and encouragement.

Request an invite here.

But I've also started working on the organizing thing again. Last year I did a big purge in my house when we remodeled, going with the minimalist mentality. So too much stuff isn't my problem this year. However, organizing my schedule and not forgetting things is an ongoing challenge. I've discovered that a lot of my issues come from the fact that I'm a visual person and pretty right-brained. Organizational apps and calendars on my phone are pretty useless for me. Unless I see it right it front of me all spread out and big picture, it's forgotten the minute I type something in. And yes, I can set up reminders but that doesn't help me see the overall view of what my week or month is looking like relative to everything else.

So I've gone to a paper planner and have made it like an art project, which is feeding my creative brain and tricking me into writing everything down because it's fun. Isn't is pretty? This is the

Happy Planner

from Create 365 if you're interested. It's very, very nice and worth every bit of the twenty-five dollars it costs. There are

other designs

besides this one as well.

planner1.jpg

But while I was poking around on Pinterest for planner stuff, I came across a few articles about how to organize for the ADHD brain. I clicked on them and was like--wow, this is so me. Now, I'm not ADHD. The list of symptoms doesn't fit me. BUT I definitely suffer from hyperfocus, especially when I'm writing, and that means all these other things get forgotten or dropped. And the strategies that work for people with ADHD totally click with how my brain works when it comes to organizing. It was an a-ha moment, honestly.

So with more research, I found this book:

Organizing Solutions for People with ADHD

. It was recommended on a few sites and most said--ignore the fact that it's aimed at those with ADHD, these tips can help a lot of people who have struggled with traditional left-brained organizing techniques.

Those recommendations were right on. I found this book so helpful. And more than once thinking--yes, this! Like, for instance, putting things in nice covered bins or boxes never works for me. Once it's out of sight or under a stack, it's dead to me. I will never remember what's in there and I won't go digging through it. And if things get stored in the back of my pantry, I may as well throw them away. If I can't see them, they no longer exist.

There's a lot more than just putting things in sight in the book. It's a quick read with lots of pictures and a ton of great tips. Some are on the extreme side (like only having one towel per family member), but there's way more good stuff to takeaway than stuff that didn't resonate with me. And it plays into the minimalist mentality as well. So if you're looking for something that's going to tell you how to organize a tone of STUFF, this isn't the right book unless you're willing to purge.

So anyway, though I usually reserve Friday Reads for fiction, I thought I'd pass this along since I know there are a lot of right-brainers (or those with ADHD) out there who maybe could use these tips too. If you're highly left-brained, this book will probably give you hives though. So be warned, lol. 

Check out the book:

Amazon

|

B&N

So are you left-brained or right-brained? Anyone else in love with their paper planner?

*Note: I have not been asked to endorse any of these products, but the links are affiliate links.

Printable Book List!

 

Ask and you shall receive. A number of readers have asked if I have a printable book list that shows the order of all the books in my series in one place. The books are listed in order on this site under the Books tab, but if you want to have an easy document to scan, this is an easy peasy version that includes EVERYTHING in the series.
Here you go! You can also click here to open in full screen.
 

Teaser Tuesday: A Snippet from OFF THE CLOCK

 

 

It's Teaser Tuesday! How about a snippet from OFF THE CLOCK (the new series releasing in January). 

This scene is from when the hero and heroine first meet back in college. (The main story takes place years later, but you know me and timelines. I like showing the past without having to do flashbacks, so the first few chapters are college. :) )

EXCERPT:

Marin’s gaze slid over to the stairwell. If she stayed on the other side of the hall in the shadows, she could probably sneak by unnoticed. She moved to the right side wall and crept forward on quiet feet. But as soon as she got within a few steps of the shaft of light coming from the occupied office, a large shadow blotted it into darkness.

She’d been so focused on that beam of light that it took her a moment to register what had happened. She froze and her gaze hopped upward, landing on the guy who filled the doorway. No, not just any guy, a very familiar guy. Tall and lean and effortlessly disheveled. Everything inside her went on alert. Oh, God, not him.

He had his hand braced on the doorjamb, and his expression was as surprised as hers probably was. “What the hell?”

“I—” She could already feel her face heating and her throat closing—some bizarre, instant response she seemed to have to this man. She’d spent way too many hours in the back of her Intro to Human Sexuality class memorizing each little detail of Donovan West. Well, his profile, really. And his walk. And the way his shoulders filled out his T-shirts. As a teaching assistant, he usually only stopped in at the beginning of class to bring Professor Paxton papers or something. But each time he walked in now, it was like some bat signal for her body to go haywire.

It’d started with the day he’d had to take over the lecture when Professor Paxton was sick. He’d talked about arousal and the physical mechanics of that process. It was technical. He’d been wearing a T-shirt that read Sometimes I Feel Like a Total Freud. It shouldn’t have been sexy. But Lord, it’d been one of the hottest experiences of her life. He’d talked with his hands a lot and had obviously been a little nervous to be in front of the class. But at the same time, he’d been so confident in the information, had answered questions with all this enthusiasm. Marin hadn’t heard a word in the rest of her classes that day for all the fantasizing she’d been doing.

But now she was staring. And blushing. And generally looking like an idiot. Yay.

She turned fully toward him and cleared her throat, trying to form some kind of non-weird response. But when her gaze quickly traveled over him again, all semblance of language left her. Oh, shit. She tried to drag her focus back to his face and cement it there. His very handsome face—a shadow of stubble, bright blue eyes, hair that fell a little too long around the ears. Lips that she’d thought way too much about. All good. All great.

But despite the nice view, she couldn’t ignore the thing in the bottom edge of her vision, the thing that had caught her attention on that quick once-over. The hard outline in his jeans screamed at her to stare—to analyze, to burn the picture into her brain. The need to look warred with embarrassment. The latter finally won and her cheeks flared even hotter. She adjusted her glasses. “Uh, yeah, hi. Sorry. I thought I was alone in the building. Didn’t mean to interrupt . . . whatever.”

He stared at her for a second, his brows knitting. “Interrupt?” 

Goddammit, her gaze flicked there again. The view was like a siren song she couldn’t ignore. Massive erection, dead ahead! She glanced away. But not quick enough for him not to notice.

“Ah, shit.” He stepped behind the doorway and hid his bottom half. “Sorry. It’s uh . . . not what it looks like.”

She snorted, an involuntary, nervous, half-choking noise that seemed to echo in the cavernous hallway. Really smooth. She tried to force some kind of wit past the awkwardness that was overtaking her. “Ohh-kay. If you say so.”

He laughed, this deep chuckle that seemed to come straight out of his chest and fill the space between them with warmth. Lord, even his laugh was sexy. So not fair.

“Well, okay, it is that. But why it’s there is just an occupational hazard.”

“Occupational hazard? Must be more interesting than the sleep lab.”

 

Pre-order the book:

Nook

Kindle 

Kobo

iBooks

Google Play

 

**Note: This is not a final copy so could have typos.


Friday Reads: Sutphin Boulevard by Santino Hassell

 

I was SO in a reading slump, so I put a call out on Twitter for suggestions. Like four different people recommended this one, and they were totally right. Reading slump obliterated! Loved this one. Plus, that cover...wow.

About the book:

A Five Boroughs Story 

Michael Rodriguez and Nunzio Medici have been friends for two decades. From escaping their dysfunctional families in the working-class neighborhood of South Jamaica, Queens, to teaching in one of the city's most queer-friendly schools in Brooklyn, the two men have shared everything. Or so they thought until a sweltering night of dancing leads to an unexpected encounter that forever changes their friendship. 

Now, casual touches and lingering looks are packed with sexual tension, and Michael can't forget the feel of his best friend's hands on him. Once problems rear up at work and home, Michael finds himself seeking constant escape in the effortless intimacy and mind-blowing sex he has with Nunzio. But things don't stay easy for long. 

When Michael's world begins to crumble in a sea of tragedy and complications, he knows he has to make a choice: find solace in a path of self-destruction or accept the love of the man who has been by his side for twenty years. 

Buy the book: Amazon | B&N 

What are you reading this weekend?



Teaser Tuesday: Sam & Gibson from BREAK ME DOWN

 


It's Teaser Tuesday time! How about a new snippet of Sam and Gibson from BREAK ME DOWN, the novella coming out in October?

Sam set the beer in front of Tessa and then finally turned to Gibson. She kept her smile poised, but it took everything she had to keep her composure when Gib looked up. He’d let his jaw go a little scruffy, and the dark shadow of a beard only made him more edible. But the look in his eyes was what sucked the air right out of her. So this was what a gazelle must feel like when a starved lion caught site of her. Hunger had flared in that deep blue gaze—open, naked, and without apology.

God. A jolt of desire went straight downward, like a rope being tugged. Hello. Lady parts officially engaged.

 She must’ve reacted, showed some chink in her expression. Because as soon as that look was there, he shuttered it, glancing away and offering a flat, “Hey, Sam.”

Everything inside her deflated—the pin of reality popping the balloon of hope. Ugh. Stupid, stupid man. She wanted to grab that thick dark hair and make him hold the gaze, force him to show her the truth. To be real with her. But of course, she couldn’t touch him anymore. And well, that would look a little weird in the bar. Sexually frustrated manager grabs customer by the hair, makes demands. She swallowed past the tightness in her throat, completely forgetting her plan to look seductive and so over him. “Crown and water.” 

She plunked the glass on the table without grace, causing some of it to slosh over the top.

“Thanks,” he said gruffly. 

Silence ensued and Tessa cleared her throat. “Um, do y’all still have those potato things with the bacon? I’m starving.”

Sam snapped out of her daze and turned to Tessa. “Potato skins. You bet. I’ll tell Angie to put in an order. She’ll be handling your table. I just wanted to come over and say hi.”

Gibson took a long gulp from his glass and then brushed a hand over his wavy hair, trying to smooth the unsmoothable. A move she’d learned was his sign of discomfort. God, this was so ridiculous. 

And she was done with it. So things had gotten a little out of hand during that last training session. He’d been helping her out, bottoming for her so she could learn how to use a whip. They’d been through a few weeks of lessons and everything had gone well. All had been done under the assumption that he was a fellow dominant who would be guiding her from the bottom—a friendly exchange. He wasn’t supposed to get hard when she whipped him. And she wasn’t supposed to get so turned on at the sight of him. And they weren’t supposed to kiss. And she definitely wasn’t supposed to let him push her against a wall and put his hand beneath her skirt to get her off.

But all that had happened, and when she’d tried to wrest control back and take him to bed as her submissive, everything had exploded in her face. He’d snapped out of whatever spell he’d been in from the whipping and had told her that nothing could happen between them because they were both dominants. That he had a masochistic streak not a submissive one. The training had ended right there. And she might’ve been able to let it go, to buy that he was just a dominant with a taste for pain, but her instincts were telling her it was far more than that. Not that it mattered what she thought. For whatever reason, he wasn’t going to take the submissive role. Period. End of sentence.

She wasn’t worth the risk to him.

Fine.

“Is there anything else I can get y’all for now?” she asked, her voice coming out a little too bright, too twangy. Damn, she was going Dolly Parton on their asses. Usually that only happened when customers pushed her to her politeness breaking point. Of course I’ll get your hamburger recooked a third time, sugar. I should’ve known when you said medium you meant fossilized.

Tessa’s brow went up, seeing right through Sam’s act.

“No, I think we’re good, Sam.” Kate cut an annoyed look his brother’s way.

Sam hustled back to the safety of the bar, cringing at how easily she’d gotten knocked off her plan. Damn that man.

 

 

Pre-order the book:

Nook | Kindle | Kindle UK | Kindle Canada | Kobo | iBooks |Google Play

 

Hope you enjoyed it! Have a great Tuesday! I'll be starting chapter one, page one, word one of a new book today. Always terrifying. :)

 

 

Teaser Tuesday: Meet Dr. Donovan West of OFF THE CLOCK

 

I'm back from the RWA confernece in NYC and it's Teaser Tuesday time! How about a sneak peek of Dr. Donovan West from OFF THE CLOCK?

This one is out in January and the start of my new Pleasure Principle series!

From OFF THE CLOCK:

Donovan stared out the window at the grounds and tucked his hands in his pockets, centering himself and bringing the focus back to the task at hand. “I want you to succeed here, Marin. Don’t doubt that. I’m going to train you to the best of my ability, and I have full confidence that you’ll catch on quickly. As for our past, I think we’re both grown-ups and can leave that where it is.” He paused, trying to let go of his dour thoughts and channel some levity. He smiled at his reflection in the window. “Unless you need to profess some undying love that’s been burning for me since you let me divest of your virginity?”

*

Marin’s whirling work-related thoughts skidded to a halt, all of them falling off the edge at Donovan’s comment. Her lips parted.

But Donovan spun around, a devilish smile on his handsome face and his hands still tucked in his pockets. “That’s how it’s supposed to go, right? The guy who takes the V-card always has a special place. Research has proven it.” He put his hand on his chest. “Come on, did you write my name in your notebooks with a heart around it? You can tell me. I’m a doctor.”

A choked laugh escaped her. “Research doesn’t say any such thing. Plus, your name would be too long to fit in a heart. And if you recall, I walked away from you that night, doctor. So you were probably the one pining over your misguided night with a teenager.”

He chuckled, the sound as rich and warm as she remembered. It softened some of those hard edges he’d acquired in the years since she’d known him, gentled the icy blue in his eyes. “Of course I was. There was bad poetry written. Sad songs played. I went through this weird emo/goth phase. It wasn’t pretty.”

“I’m sure,” she said dryly. But let out an internal sigh of relief at his shift in mood. This was the Donovan she remembered. He was still in there somewhere. She could work with that guy. She wasn’t so sure about the other.

He grinned, unrepentant. “See. You’re going to do just fine. There are two important requirements to work in this field: shamelessness and a sense of humor.” He raised a finger. “Oh, and the ability to keep a straight face no matter what.”

He gave her a super-serious therapist face.

She tried to give her own back to him, but she lost the staring contest and laughed.

He pointed at her. “All right. Elephants slain?”

He still hadn’t told her what he’d been doing in the parking lot in that half-dressed state, but it really wasn’t any of her business. “Sure. Bleeding on the floor.”

“Aw, poor elephants.”

He slipped off his suit jacket, hooked it around the back of his chair, and sat behind his desk in one gracefully executed maneuver—all confidence and swagger. The accomplished doctor. The ridiculously beautiful man. Donovan West was pure impact.

She had a feeling he was probably loved or hated around here, not much in between. He was a man who inspired reaction. He’d sure as hell always inspired one in her. Just not one that had any place at work.

Stop it. She sat up straighter, studiously ignoring how well his shoulders filled out that dress shirt, how the blue of his tie matched his eyes, and how his dark hair looked thick enough for her fingers to get lost in. Nope. Totally wasn’t going to pay attention to any of that.

 

Pre-order the book (and grab the pre-sale 7.99 price!): 

Nook | Kindle  | Kobo | iBooks | Google Play

 

Have a great week!

Friday Reads: Love the Way You Lie by Skye Warren

 

 

It's Friday Reads time! This week I have a dark romance for you. And bonus, it's on sale for 99 cents! 

If you haven't read Skye Warren before, be prepared for dark romances with anti-heroes--know that going in. There are happy endings but it's not your traditional romance. That's what I like about her books, that pushing the envelope edge. But it's not for everyone, so this is an easy way to try her out. And this one isn't as dark as some of her others I've read. But I love her use of language and the storylines she tackles. She's becoming an auto buy for me.

Amazon | B&N

About the book:

A dark romance about the lies that lead us down...

I'll do anything to get safe, even if that means working at the scariest club in town.

I'll do anything to stay hidden, even if it means taking off my clothes for strangers.

I'll do anything to be free. Except give him up. When he looks at me, I forget why I can't have him. He's beautiful and scarred. His body fits mine, filling the places where I'm hollow, rough where I am soft.

He's the one man who wants to help, but he has his own agenda. He has questions I can't answer. What are you afraid of?

You.

 

What are you reading this week?


Weekly Book PSA: Pike's book CALL ON ME is now out and this is what Publisher's Weekly had to say about it: "...sets the pages on fire. The romance is as sweet as the action is hot, and there's something deeply satisfying about the way this couple comes together."

Have you gotten your hands on Pike yet? ;)

Nook |Kindle | Kindle UK | Kindle Canada

Kobo |Apple/iTunes | Google Play

 

 

 

 

**Disclaimer: Any books recommended here are from my own TBR pile that I buy with my own money unless otherwise noted. I have not been asked to review this book by the author or publisher. I do not take review requests or feature sponsored content. However, Amazon links are affiliate links.**

 

TEASER TUESDAY: A peek at "House Call" the short story

 

 

Today for Teaser Tuesday, I'm giving you a little peek at "House Call" -- this is the bonus short story in the back of the paperback version of CALL ON ME. For those of you who read the series, this is Dr. Theo Montgomery's story, the smug but submissive doc who shows up in FALL INTO YOU and NOTHING BETWEEN US. Enjoy!

 

From "House Call" short story in CALL ON ME (paperback edition):

There was a flicker in his gaze—worry. It looked out of place on him. “Mistress, please make an exception.”

“Why?”

He looked away, jaw tightening. 

She took a few steps forward until she was right in front of him and snapped her fingers, the sound echoing in the cavernous room. “If you expect me to consider it, you will look at me and tell me why.”


He turned his head toward her—the fight within him visible in the tense lines of his face. He was a proud man, one who was used to everyone deferring to him, but his submissive streak ran deep. He wanted to fight. He wanted to please. “I had a bad day at work and could use a distraction.”

She kept her expression smooth even though a little surge of victory went through her that he’d actually given her an answer. “Tell me why it was so bad.”

His jaw twitched. The request was razor close to the one that had made him use his safe word last time. She braced herself for him to bail. Instead he said, “Tell me why you stopped taking clients.”

Her lips curved. “You’re not the one who gets to make the commands in here, Theodore. But maybe if you comply with mine, I’ll consider answering.”

He sent her a steely look—one that she’d normally happily punish him for—but she hadn’t agreed to play with him, so she couldn’t go there. Their gazes held for a long moment, a silent war, but finally, he said, “A patient died on my operating table tonight. I had to tell her husband and daughter.”

Maggie’s lungs squeezed tight, all the breath whooshing out of her. “That’s awful, Theo. I’m sorry.”

He shifted, obviously uncomfortable with her sympathy. “Part of the job, Mistress. We all have our own ways of dealing with it.”

And his was getting the hell beat out of him by her. She didn’t blame him. If she had to face that kind of thing every day, she may need those memories beaten out of her, too. But that didn’t mean she could do this. 

She grabbed a chair from the side of the room and pulled it over so she could sit in front of him instead of looming over him. What she was going to say wasn’t coming from Maggie the domme but Maggie the woman. “Thank you for telling me. I stopped taking clients because a guy got angry one night when I wouldn’t perform according to his wishes, and he backhanded me, split my lip.”

Theo’s attention snapped upward, fire in his eyes. “Someone hurt you? Who the f**k was he?”

The fierceness in the words took her breath for a second—the cool doctor looking like he could turn violent offender on her behalf if he got the guy’s name. She wet her lips. “Who it was doesn’t matter. The staff jumped in immediately. I wasn’t hurt badly, just a little shaken. And a lot pissed. The guy was banned from the premises. But after that, I decided I didn’t want to take money for this anymore. I never did this to be a performer in someone’s play. And it was beginning to feel like that’s what it had become. So now I know that when I scene, I’m doing it for me and the person I’m with. It’s real.” The last part slipped out and she winced inwardly. “Not that what we did together wasn’t real—“

He lifted a hand. “I’m well aware I was paying you for a service, Mistress. I didn’t assume it was anything more than that.”

No, apparently it was her job to weave fantasies that their business arrangement was more. She blew out a breath, unsure what to say. 

Theo put his hands to his knees and nodded. “All right. I understand. I appreciate you telling me. Though, these are the times I wish I were one of the doms. I could order you to change your mind.”

She laughed. “You realize that would so not work on me, right? I’d tell that dom to take his riding crop and shove it in his special place. You’d have a much better chance of persuading me than they would.”

Theo lifted his head, and the little quirk of his lips could’ve been mistaken for a smile. 

The sight nearly knocked her out of her chair. Goddamn. He was dangerously good-looking on any day. Broody and smug worked for him. But hell if that little hint of humor in his blue eyes didn’t take the wind right out of her.

“Thanks for that, Mistress.” He stood. “I hope you have a good new year.”

“I—“ Seeing him head toward the door sent a sharp dart of panic through her. She’d been enjoying this—a taste of a real conversation with him. And she had a feeling if he walked out, he would never be back to see her. “Wait. I didn’t say you could leave yet.”

He turned, one eyebrow lifted. “I apologize. May I leave, Mistress?”

She stood, trying to gather her courage. She’d put this man on her knees, had put her hands on him, but doing this was giving her heart palpitations. She cleared her throat. “We’ve both had long days. I’m really ready to get out of here. But what if…well, there’s a little diner up the road from here. They serve great pie. We could, you know, go have some pie together.”

God. Her inner cringe was absolute. Badass domme, step side, awkward teenager is here to humiliate you and undermine all street cred you’ve built with this man.

Theo looked stricken for a second then his expression closed down. He tucked his hands in his pockets. “That’s generous, Mistress. But I don’t…have pie with people.”

She frowned and put a hand to her hip, considering him. “You realize the pie wasn’t a euphemism, right? There will be actual pie involved.”

That half-smile appeared again but with a somber edge to it. “I don’t date.”

Her lips parted for a second at that bomb. “Like ever?”

“Ever. Goodnight, Margaret.”

Her given name on his lips sent a warm curl of awareness up the back of his neck. He’d never called her anything but mistress. She hadn’t even been sure he knew her name. But before she could respond, he turned on his heel and strode toward the door.


She stared at the empty doorway for a long minute. If she walked out to the main floor, would Theo be setting up an appointment with another domme? Would he let someone else exorcise his bad day? The thought sent a wash of hot jealousy through her.

She sighed and leaned against the wall. “Give it up, girl. You asked him out and he shut you down. You were just the hired whip. Let it go.”

Great. Now she was talking to herself. 

She massaged her brow with her fingertips, exhaustion settling in like a wet coat. She needed to get home and get to bed. 

And she definitely needed to forget about the doctor with the ridiculously hot body and the haunted eyes.

Wrong tree. No barking allowed.

 

Buy the book: Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Books-A-Million | Indie Bound

Have a happy Tuesday!

 

 

 

CALL ON ME is out today! Meet Pike & win brownies!

 

I am so so so excited that today is here! Pike's book released today! Out everywhere in ebook and print. (Note: Print has a bonus short story about Dr. Theo Montogomery, the submisive doctor who has appeared in some of the series.)

If you're new to this series, feel free to jump in here. All the books can stand alone. If you're a longtime reader (thank you!), I hope you enjoy seeing Pike get his happy ending. :)

Here's the info and be sure to scroll to the bottom for a chance to win 4 gourmet brownies from Wicked Cupcakes!

Buy the book: B&N | Amazon | Kindle UK | KoboiBooks |Google Play

About the book:

Oakley Easton wants two things: to be a good mom to her daughter and to ditch her less than ideal night job. Hooking up with bad boy drummer Pike Ryland? Not on the agenda. She needs a promotion. Not sex, tattoos and rock ’n’ roll.

Pike isn’t about to let Ms. Prim and Proper shut him down so easily, especially when he stumbles upon Oakley’s sexy night job. She’s only playing a role on those late night calls with strangers, but when he gets her on the line, all bets are off. He won’t stop until that sultry voice is calling his name for real.

But as they move from anonymous fantasies in the dark to the flesh-on-hot-flesh reality of the bedroom, the risk of falling in love becomes all too high. And the safe, quiet world that Oakley’s worked so hard to create is about to be exposed to the one person who could ruin it all.

 

Excerpt:

She startled and stiffened, instantly yanked out of her less than PG thoughts. “What?”

He leaned back in his chair, vague confusion on his face. “I asked if wanted to keep working in that back room? We could rehearse at the studio once they’re close to being ready to record. But until then, it’s probably more trouble than it’s worth to cart everyone over there. It’s not that big of a place.”

“Rehearse in the back room?” she repeated, running the words back in her head to make sense of them. “Oh, right, yes, that’s fine. I’m sorry. I thought you said something else.”

She eyed the small bellini she’d ordered with her meal. Maybe that had been a bad idea. She was hearing things now.

Screw in the bathroom? How the hell had she gotten that out of what he’d said? Of course, now all she could think of was him doing just that—taking her by the elbow and leading her to that dark alcove at the back of the restaurant, pushing her up against that wall with the faded Italian flag on it and putting his hands all over her. She licked her top lip, tasting the sweet remnants of her drink. Pull it together, woman.

Apparently, once her libido had been brave enough to peep its head out, it had decided it was Groundhog Day and needed to run around, declaring spring was coming early. She hated to break the news, but nothing and no one was coming anytime soon.

“What did you think I said?” Pike took a long sip from his drink, his snake charmer eyes never leaving hers.

She followed suit, hoping the fruity drink would cool off more than her throat. “Doesn’t matter.”

His lips twitched. “You’re all red.”

“I think it’s the bellini. I don’t drink very often.”

“No way.” His expression turned smug. “You thought I said something dirty, didn’t you?”

“Huh?” She smoothed her napkin in her lap, trying to loosen the tightness in her voice. “No. Why would I think that? You’ve been very professional since we got here—which I appreciate by the way.”

His gaze slid lazily down her body, like butter melting over toast, and goddamn it all to hell, she could feel her nipples go hard and obvious beneath her bra. No wonder he’d figured it out. Her body was waving all kinds of flags in his face. Hey! Over here! Horny girl, booth eight!

“I am capable of being professional, you know,” he said, but his tone was all sex and sin. “I’m also more than happy to turn that off when the occasion calls for it. So why don’t you tell me what you thought you heard and why it’s gotten you all flushed and nervous?”

“I’m not nervous.”

He grinned.

Dammit. She schooled her face into a stoic expression. “The music is too loud in here. I thought you propositioned me to defile the restroom.”

Hie eyebrow ring twitched. “Now you’re just trying to turn me on with those big, stiff words of yours.”

All she heard was big and stiff at first, but she managed to rein in her temporary insanity. “We’re so not going to do this.”

“Well, probably not here, you’re right. I saw those bathrooms. But—“

“No, I mean, any of this. Flirting. Teasing. Whatever this is.”

He leaned onto his forearms, looking all too pleased that he’d gotten a confession out of her. “You got a guy?”

“No,” she said before she could get wise and fib.

“Then why can’t we do this?”

“Because I’m not interested.”

“Liar.”

She huffed. “Are you always this cocky?”

“No, it’s dialed down right now. I can get way worse.”

She stirred her drink. “Not. Possible.”

His lips spread into a menacing smile. “Challenge accepted.”

 ***

CONTEST ALERT: Win a Custom 4-pack of gourmet brownies from Wicked Cupcakes! 

 

Who's ready for Pike?


Teaser Tuesday: CALL ON ME is only a week away!

 

 

Guess who's only a week away? Pike! So today I thought I'd give you a peek at Pike playing drum, the heroine Oakley, and for those who've read YOURS ALL ALONG, a little cameo by Devon.

 

Excerpt:

“So,” Devon said, obviously searching for a change in topic, “you know a guy in the next band?”

“The drummer. He’s the one helping out with that music project at Bluebonnet. He gave us tickets, thought Reagan might have fun.”

Dev’s eyebrow arched. “Right. Because he thought your kid might have fun.”

“It’s not like that.”

“Uh-huh.”

Guitar chords blasted through the speaker for a moment as the crew on stage did the sound check. Oakley turned her head as the big screens on the side of the stage lit up with a publicity photo for Darkfall—the wind making the screens ripple and the bodies in the picture come to life. The crowd cheered.

“Look, mom!” Reagan shouted back at her. “It’s Mr. Pike!”

“I see, baby.” Boy, did she. The larger than life image had Pike staring down the camera with his bandmates. Badass. Tough. Beautiful.

“Which one is he?” Devon asked, following her gaze.

“The blond.”

“Whoa,” he said low enough for the kids not to hear. “You had that guy over for pizza and managed keep your clothes on? You have more restraint than I do.”

He had no idea. “I have no interest in being a groupie.”

“Can I be one?”

She shoved his shoulder. “You’re such a tramp. I’m so telling Hunter when he gets back in town.”

“Tell him. He’d agree. But seriously, is the guy a jerk? He looks like he has high potential to be an egomaniac. I don’t want that kind of guy around my baby sister and niece.”

She frowned and dragged her eyes away from the picture. “Oh, he’s got an ego, all right. He’s entirely inappropriate most of the time and a shameless flirt. But I wouldn’t say he’s a jerk. He’s kind of, I don’t know, weird and manic and…funny.”

Devon tipped up the bill of his hat, eyeing her with a sly smile. “Oh, so we have a mad crush then?”

“What? No.”

“Oak, you’re here in the Texas heat at a hard rock festival. You don’t even know these bands. And a few weeks ago, when I asked if you wanted to take Reagan to see that 80s cover band, you told me she was too young for concerts.”

Oakley crossed her arms. “Rae has since proven her maturity.”

He smirked. “Bull. Shit. You’ve got the hots for this guy.”

“He’s not my type.”

Dev shook his head and draped his arm around her shoulders, pulling her close so the kids couldn’t hear. “Come on, don’t freak out about it. You work too hard and spend too much time alone. This could be good for you.”

“An ill-advised hookup with a drummer who will drop me as soon as he gets bored could be good for me?”

“Exactly. Look, I know I’m your brother and shouldn’t be saying this, but there’s nothing wrong with a finding yourself a hot, temporary fuck buddy.”

“Dev!”

He laughed. “Oh, don’t be such a prude. I mean, yes, you’re right. The guy’s probably not boyfriend material. But you’re a grown woman and deserve some fun. You know we’re always happy to have Rae over if you need a date night.”

“I think you just flunked big brother school.”

He gave her shoulder a pat. “Okay, fine, want responsible brotherly advice? Use a condom. And don’t let him take video.”

She poked him in the ribs. But before she could respond to his comment, the lights on stage began to flash and the crowd surged forward, excitement like a contagion moving through them.

“Come on, mom! Let’s get closer.” Reagan grabbed her hand and dragged her with the flow of the crowd.

They’d already been pretty close to the stage, thanks to the special passes Pike had sent, but now they were only a ten or twelve rows of people back on the far left side of the stage. Bodies pressed close to them and she couldn’t help but get caught up in the fervor of the crowd.

She pushed onto her toes, knowing the drummer was almost always the first one to come out.

“Is that him?” Dev asked.

“Where?”

Devon pointed to the other end of the stage, and Oakley froze up the moment her eyes landed on Pike. Tight gray jeans, combat boots, and a black sleeveless T-shirt that showed off his ink. All swagger and sex and guyliner. Pike waltzed onto the stage like it’d been built just for him. He lifted his hand in greeting, earning screams from the audience, then hopped behind his drum kit. He put in his earpiece, raised his drumstick, and leaned over to his mic with a cocky smile. “Y’all ready for us, Dallas?”

The crowd erupted. Sound exploded from his drums.

And Oakley forgot to breathe.

Good. God.

The rest of the band ran onto the stage, adding guitars and vocals to Pike’s heavy rhythm, but Oakley barely heard the words.

All she could do was stare. Pike took command of the drums like he had a personal vendetta against them, banging hard and violent but with a sharp-edged grace that made it look like moving art. Every part of his body worked in perfect rhythm—muscles flexing, tattoos dancing, sweat flying—and the expression on his face wasn’t far from what she’d imagined he looked like in the throes of sex. He was taking the songs in his fists and making them his with every swing of his drumsticks.

Oakley swayed on her feet, the pounding beat taking on an erotic edge, vibrating though her and invading her like a drug.

He looked possessed.

He sounded amazing.

And she was toast.

She felt the urge ride up her throat and she couldn’t stop it. Her hands went up with the rest of the crowd and she screamed Pike’s name like a goddamned groupie.

Fucking. Toast.

***

Pre-order so that Pike is waiting for you next Tuesday!

B&N | Amazon | Kindle UK | Kobo | iBooks | Google Play

 

Friday Reads: Trust the Focus by Megan Erickson

 

 

It's an amazing, historic day! So for today's Friday Read, of course I'm picking an LGBT romance. :) Megan Erickson's TRUST THE FOCUS. I read this one this week and loved it. I'm such a sucker for a road trip story, and there were parts that were LOL funny. There's a conversation about a grilled cheese that had me snorting. And great news, it's only 99 cents right now!

About the book:

With his college graduation gown expertly pitched into the trash, Justin Akron is ready for the road trip he planned with his best friend Landry— and ready for one last summer of escape from his mother’s controlling grip. Climbing into the Winnebago his father left him, they set out across America in search of the sites his father had captured through the lens of his Nikon.
 
As an aspiring photographer, Justin can think of no better way to honor his father’s memory than to scatter his ashes at the sites he held sacred. And there’s no one Justin would rather share the experience with more than Landry.
 
But Justin knows he can’t escape forever. Eventually he’ll have to return home and join his mother’s Senate campaign. Nor can he escape the truth of who he is, and the fact that he’s in love with his out-and-proud travel companion.

Admitting what he wants could hurt his mother’s conservative political career. But with every click of his shutter and every sprinkle of ash, Justin can’t resist Landry’s pull. And when the truth comes into focus, neither is prepared for the secrets the other is hiding.

Buy it: Amazon | B&N 

Let me know if you give it a read! Have a great weekend!

 

**Disclaimer: Any books recommended here are from my own TBR pile that I buy with my own money unless otherwise noted. I have not been asked to review this book by the author or publisher. I do not take review requests or feature sponsored content. However, this book is from Penguin Intermix, my publisher.

Teaser Tuesday: Pike from CALL ON ME in all his cocky glory

 

Pike is here in only two weeks!!! Are you ready? Here's a snippet from the king of cockiness...

 

From CALL ON ME:

She startled and stiffened, instantly yanked out of her less than PG thoughts. “What?”

He leaned back in his chair, vague confusion on his face. “I asked if wanted to keep working in that back room? We could rehearse at the studio once they’re close to being ready to record. But until then, it’s probably more trouble than it’s worth to cart everyone over there. It’s not that big of a place.”

“Rehearse in the back room?” she repeated, running the words back in her head to make sense of them. “Oh, right, yes, that’s fine. I’m sorry. I thought you said something else.” 

She eyed the small bellini she’d ordered with her meal. Maybe that had been a bad idea. She was hearing things now.

Screw in the bathroom? How the hell had she gotten that out of what he’d said? Of course, now all she could think of was him doing just that—taking her by the elbow and leading her to that dark alcove at the back of the restaurant, pushing her up against that wall with the faded Italian flag on it and putting his hands all over her. She licked her top lip, tasting the sweet remnants of her drink. Pull it together, woman.

Apparently, once her libido had been brave enough to peep its head out, it had decided it was Groundhog Day and needed to run around, declaring spring was coming early. She hated to break the news, but nothing and no one was coming anytime soon.

“What did you think I said?” Pike took a long sip from his drink, his snake charmer eyes never leaving hers.

She followed suit, hoping the fruity drink would cool off more than her throat. “Doesn’t matter.”

His lips twitched. “You’re all red.”

“I think it’s the bellini. I don’t drink very often.”

“No way.” His expression turned smug. “You thought I said something dirty, didn’t you?”

“Huh?” She smoothed her napkin in her lap, trying to loosen the tightness in her voice. “No. Why would I think that? You’ve been very professional since we got here—which I appreciate by the way.”

His gaze slid lazily down her body, like butter melting over toast, and goddamn it all to hell, she could feel her nipples go hard and obvious beneath her bra. No wonder he’d figured it out. Her body was waving all kinds of flags in his face. Hey! Over here! Horny girl, booth eight!

“I am capable of being professional, you know,” he said, but his tone was all sex and sin. “I’m also more than happy to turn that off when the occasion calls for it. So why don’t you tell me what you thought you heard and why it’s gotten you all flushed and nervous?”

“I’m not nervous.”

He grinned.

Dammit. She schooled her face into a stoic expression. “The music is too loud in here. I thought you propositioned me to defile the restroom.”

Hie eyebrow ring twitched. “Now you’re just trying to turn me on with those big, stiff words of yours.”

All she heard was big and stiff at first, but she managed to rein in her temporary insanity. “We’re so not going to do this.”

“Well, probably not here, you’re right. I saw those bathrooms. But—“

“No, I mean, any of this. Flirting. Teasing. Whatever this is.”

He leaned onto his forearms, looking all too pleased that he’d gotten a confession out of her. “You got a guy?”

“No,” she said before she could get wise and fib.

“Then why can’t we do this?”

“Because I’m not interested.”

“Liar.”

She huffed. “Are you always this cocky?”

“No, it’s dialed down right now. I can get way worse.”

She stirred her drink. “Not. Possible.”

His lips spread into a menacing smile. “Challenge accepted.”

***

Pre-order the book: AmazonNook | Kindle UK | Kobo | iBooks | Google Play

 

**Note: The paperback version will contain an addtional short story that will feature Dr. Theo Montgomery who has show up in previous books. 

YOURS ALL ALONG is here!

 

It's release day, whee! And I'm so very excited to introduce you to Devon and Hunter. These two guys haven't shown up in a previous book but you'll see more of them in Pike's book CALL ON ME. But when I "met" them while writing Pike's book, I knew I needed to give them their own story.

I'm an avid reader of LGBT romance and though I've written a m/m short story (in Fifty First Times) and m/m/f menage books (Melt Into You, Nothing Between Us, Forever Starts Tonight), I've never had the chance to write a m/m romance. So I'm thrilled to finally have the opportunity. Hope you enjoy it!

About the book:
The new Loving on the Edge romance from the New York Times bestselling author of Nothing Between Us turns on the heat between two men who wonder how much they’re willing to risk in the name of love.

Four years after an accident tore their friendship apart, Hunter and Devon are living separate lives. Hunter is now the all-America hero—a congressman’s son and a pro pitcher in Houston preparing to marry his beauty-queen girlfriend. Devon is in Dallas running a new restaurant. 

But when Hunter unexpectedly shows up in Devon’s bar, Devon can’t turn him away. Damn it if the man isn’t still gorgeous. But engaged? Hell no. All he’s doing for Devon is bringing back memories of their college-roommate days, and the night their relationship went too far. Turns out Hunter has never forgotten it either.

Now Devon can’t help but be drawn in all over again by the only guy who’s ever gotten close enough to break his heart. Maybe one more night together would be enough for both of them to finally move on. Or maybe one night will change everything…
Buy it for $2.99! Nook | Kindle | Kobo | iBooks |Google Play | Kindle UK | Kindle Canada
And if you'd like to help me spread the word on blogs, Facebook, or Twitter (which would be AMAZINGLY nice of you to do) here are some shareable quote cards! :)

 

 

 

An excerpt:

This was so not his scene. Hunter tried to move to the beat of the pop song as the crowd pulsed around him near the front of the stage, but this music was not his thing and the high school chick in front of him kept casually grinding herself back against him, making everything awkward. He wasn’t drunk enough for this shit. Grinding girl sent him a look over her shoulder that obviously was some sort of invitation, but he couldn’t be less interested. She had on a pound of makeup and reeked of some kind of sweet perfume and alcohol. No thanks.

Dev was having no trouble keeping up with the beat, though, and seemed to be having a way better time. The shots he’d taken before they came in had probably helped. The kid had been in a weird mood the whole ride here. But now he was bouncing next to Hunter, face lit up with pride, as he watched his baby sister perform on stage. Hunter took a long sip off his cup to finish his beer, entertained more by the view of his tipsy, dancing friend than what was on stage or the girl in front of him.

“Isn’t she amazing?” Devon yelled.

Hunter smiled and tossed his empty cup to the ground, Dev’s exuberance contagious. “Yep. She’s totally hot.”

Devon shoved him in the shoulder. “Watch it, big man. That’s my baby sister. I’ll kick your ass.”

Hunter caught Devon’s wrist before he moved away, the heat of Dev’s skin against his palm sending a jolt through him, and without thinking, he pulled him closer. “I’d like to see you try, Easton.”

Devon’s gaze flicked to Hunter’s grip on his wrist then to the scant space between them, confusion flaring there. “What are you doing?”

Hunter knew he should let go, but somehow he couldn’t bring himself to do it. Holding on to Dev in the mass of chaos felt like finding safe harbor in the eye of a storm. He put his mouth close to Devon’s ear. “I’m using you as a shield. I need you to protect my virtue from the jailbait over there. Maybe she’ll think we’re together.”

Devon glanced over at the girl, who peered back again, focus zeroing in on Hunter. Dev gave him a wicked look, his smirk loose from his buzz. “We’ve got this. Just follow my lead.” Devon hooked his finger in Hunter’s belt loop and dragged him over to the spot he’d been dancing in. The music pumped through the arena, and the colored lights sparked over Devon in a haphazard, colorful pattern, revealing only pieces, snapshots. Hunter couldn’t look away. Dev rocked to the beat. “Come on, big man. Dance. Let’s shatter her little schoolgirl fantasy about landing a college guy for the night. Let her think I’m taking you home.”

Hunter laughed, nervous all of a sudden. “I suck at dancing.”

“Nobody sucks at dancing at a concert. Just close your eyes and move.”

Hunter wasn’t sure that was the truth, but he did have a little buzz going, and Dev’s grip on his waist was keeping him in time with the music. He closed his eyes and hooked an arm around Devon’s neck, focusing on letting go and moving with the beat.

“There you go,” Dev declared. “Just move.”

Hunter rarely danced and definitely had never tried with a guy, but before long, he could feel himself getting swept up in it—the beer, the music, the skill of his dance partner. All if it was pulsing through him with an electric edge, waking up everything and dragging him into the oblivion. He opened his eyes, finding Dev with flushed cheeks and laughing eyes. Devon spun around and then grabbed Hunter again without missing a beat. God, the kid was something. Devon was in his element tonight. Not that he ever held back. He was open about who he was, but seeing him in this environment proved that Devon still held some things in check around the frat house. Here Devon was free . . . and fucking magnetic.

The draw was something Hunter was learning to get used to. From the beginning, Devon had had this undeniable pull on him, but it’d been purely a friendship vibe. They connected and just got each other’s humor. Their differences had been a nonissue.

But after the night they’d shared his bed, the pull had gotten decidedly less clear cut. Hunter hadn’t lied when Devon had asked if he looked at guys in a sexual way. He didn’t. He was just starting to look at Devon that way. And it was completely fucking with his head.

Devon turned and put his back to Hunter, keeping close but moving with the music and leaving enough space between them that it didn’t cross into bump-and-grind territory. That’s when stalker girl decided she had an opening. She shimmied over and tried to work her way in between him and Devon. Her body brushed against Hunter’s arm in seductive invitation. But before she could slide into Devon’s spot, Hunter took a wide step, grabbed Devon’s hand, and pulled Dev against him hard. Their chests collided, and Devon’s eyes widened.

 ~~~

 

Happy reading!!!!! And thank you to everyone who buys it!

 

FRIDAY READS: Openly Straight by Bill Konigsberg

 

First, a quick DEAL ALERT. My Invitation to Eden book BLURRING THE LINES is on sale for .99 for a limited time. Grab it on the cheap! 

About the book:

A year has passed since Gretchen lost her fiancé, but she still can’t sleep. Or paint. And her new home in New Orleans is either haunted or she’s finally going crazy. 

Her bet is on the latter. 

So when her best friend, Burke, offers to sweep her away to a private luxury island for a break, she can’t say no. Maybe if she can be someone else for a few days, the ghosts of the past will quiet. At least for a little while. 

Burke knows what she’s going through. She lost her fiancé, but he lost family. He gets her in a way no else can. But lately she’s noticing things she shouldn’t about her former fiancé’s younger brother—his sexy smirk, that spicy Cajun accent, and the way he looks at her when he thinks she’s not paying attention. A week alone with him? Dangerous. If she blurs the lines between them, she could ruin the only friendship that means anything to her. She could ruin it all. 

But the island of Eden has its own agenda. The island knows what you need. That’s what the invitation says. She just never imagines it will grant her the one wish that could destroy them both. 

 Buy it for 99 cents! Kindle | Nook | Kobo | iBooks


 

All right, on to Friday Reads. I've been giving you lots of dark reads lately, so today I have one that will have you laughing out loud and getting all the feels. OPENLY STRAIGHT by Bill Konigsberg. I adored this book! It went on my favorites shelf--which is not an easy shelf to get on--and I bought the author's other books immediately. It's a YA about Rafe who's been openly gay for years and has very supportive family, friends, and community. But he's tired of being looked at as gay first before anything else. So he decides to go to an all boys boarding school for his last two years of high school and not tell anyone he's gay. I loved the issues it explored and how he worked through him. I also enjoyed the romantic thread in it. Enjoy!

A funny, honest novel about being out, being proud . . . and being ready for something else.

Rafe is a normal teenager from Boulder, Colorado. He plays soccer. He's won skiing prizes. He likes to write.
And, oh yeah, he's gay. He's been out since 8th grade, and he isn't teased, and he goes to other high schools and talks about tolerance and stuff. And while that's important, all Rafe really wants is to just be a regular guy. Not that GAY guy. To have it be a part of who he is, but not the headline, every single time. 
So when he transfers to an all-boys' boarding school in New England, he decides to keep his sexuality a secret -- not so much going back in the closet as starting over with a clean slate. But then he sees a classmate breaking down. He meets a teacher who challenges him to write his story. And most of all, he falls in love with Ben . . . who doesn't even know that love is possible. 
This witty, smart, coming-out-again story will appeal to gay and straight kids alike as they watch Rafe navigate being different, fitting in, and what it means to be himself.

Buy it: Amazon | B&N | Indiebound | iBooks

 

What have you read (or what are you currently reading) this week?


TEASER TUESDAY: Yours All Along is almost here!

 

ONE WEEK until Devon and Hunter are here. Here's another teaser. Have you pre-ordered yet? ;)

From YOURS ALL ALONG:

This was so not his scene. Hunter tried to move to the beat of the pop song as the crowd pulsed around him near the front of the stage, but this music was not his thing and the high school chick in front of him kept casually grinding herself back against him, making everything awkward. He wasn’t drunk enough for this shit. Grinding girl sent him a look over her shoulder that obviously was some sort of invitation, but he couldn’t be less interested. She had on a pound of makeup and reeked of some kind of sweet perfume and alcohol. No thanks.

Dev was having no trouble keeping up with the beat, though, and seemed to be having a way better time. The shots he’d taken before they came in had probably helped. The kid had been in a weird mood the whole ride here. But now he was bouncing next to Hunter, face lit up with pride, as he watched his baby sister perform on stage. Hunter took a long sip off his cup to finish his beer, entertained more by the view of his tipsy, dancing friend than what was on stage or the girl in front of him.

“Isn’t she amazing?” Devon yelled.

Hunter smiled and tossed his empty cup to the ground, Dev’s exuberance contagious. “Yep. She’s totally hot.”

Devon shoved him in the shoulder. “Watch it, big man. That’s my baby sister. I’ll kick your ass.”

Hunter caught Devon’s wrist before he moved away, the heat of Dev’s skin against his palm sending a jolt through him, and without thinking, he pulled him closer. “I’d like to see you try, Easton.”

Devon’s gaze flicked to Hunter’s grip on his wrist then to the scant space between them, confusion flaring there. “What are you doing?”

Hunter knew he should let go, but somehow he couldn’t bring himself to do it. Holding on to Dev in the mass of chaos felt like finding safe harbor in the eye of a storm. He put his mouth close to Devon’s ear. “I’m using you as a shield. I need you to protect my virtue from the jailbait over there. Maybe she’ll think we’re together.”

Devon glanced over at the girl, who peered back again, focus zeroing in on Hunter. Dev gave him a wicked look, his smirk loose from his buzz. “We’ve got this. Just follow my lead.” Devon hooked his finger in Hunter’s belt loop and dragged him over to the spot he’d been dancing in. The music pumped through the arena, and the colored lights sparked over Devon in a haphazard, colorful pattern, revealing only pieces, snapshots. Hunter couldn’t look away. Dev rocked to the beat. “Come on, big man. Dance. Let’s shatter her little schoolgirl fantasy about landing a college guy for the night. Let her think I’m taking you home.”

Hunter laughed, nervous all of a sudden. “I suck at dancing.”

“Nobody sucks at dancing at a concert. Just close your eyes and move.”

Hunter wasn’t sure that was the truth, but he did have a little buzz going, and Dev’s grip on his waist was keeping him in time with the music. He closed his eyes and hooked an arm around Devon’s neck, focusing on letting go and moving with the beat.

“There you go,” Dev declared. “Just move.”

Hunter rarely danced and definitely had never tried with a guy, but before long, he could feel himself getting swept up in it—the beer, the music, the skill of his dance partner. All if it was pulsing through him with an electric edge, waking up everything and dragging him into the oblivion. He opened his eyes, finding Dev with flushed cheeks and laughing eyes. Devon spun around and then grabbed Hunter again without missing a beat. God, the kid was something. Devon was in his element tonight. Not that he ever held back. He was open about who he was, but seeing him in this environment proved that Devon still held some things in check around the frat house. Here Devon was free . . . and fucking magnetic.

The draw was something Hunter was learning to get used to. From the beginning, Devon had had this undeniable pull on him, but it’d been purely a friendship vibe. They connected and just got each other’s humor. Their differences had been a nonissue.

But after the night they’d shared his bed, the pull had gotten decidedly less clear cut. Hunter hadn’t lied when Devon had asked if he looked at guys in a sexual way. He didn’t. He was just starting to look at Devon that way. And it was completely fucking with his head.

Devon turned and put his back to Hunter, keeping close but moving with the music and leaving enough space between them that it didn’t cross into bump-and-grind territory. That’s when stalker girl decided she had an opening. She shimmied over and tried to work her way in between him and Devon. Her body brushed against Hunter’s arm in seductive invitation. But before she could slide into Devon’s spot, Hunter took a wide step, grabbed Devon’s hand, and pulled Dev against him hard. Their chests collided, and Devon’s eyes widened.

 

Pre-order for only $2.99: 

Nook

Kindle | Kindle UK | Kindle Canada

Kobo

iBooks

Google Play

Friday Reads: ASKING FOR IT by Lilah Pace

 

It's Friday Reads time! I've got another dark romance for you this week (what is with me lately? lol). This one's gotten a lot of buzz because it was just released this week, so you may have already heard a little about it. But the book was fantastic and an extremely difficult topic was handled very, very well. Plus, it takes place in Austin and New Orleans (where I've lived and where I'm originally from) so I liked seeing two of my favorite cities. Be advised: The topics it covers can be triggers for some people. Read the trigger warnings first.

ASKING FOR IT by Lilah Pace - Amazon | B&N

“This is who I am. This is what I want. Now I need a man dangerous enough to give it to me.” 

Graduate student Vivienne Charles is afraid of her own desires—ashamed to admit that she fantasizes about being taken by force, by a man who will claim her completely and without mercy. When the magnetic, mysterious Jonah Marks learns her secret, he makes an offer that stuns her: they will remain near-strangers to each other, and meet in secret so that he can fulfill her fantasy.

Their arrangement is twisted. The sex is incredible. And—despite their attempts to stay apart—soon their emotions are bound together as tightly as the rope around Vivienne’s wrists. But the secrets in their pasts threaten to turn their affair even darker...

Reader Advisory: Asking for It deals explicitly with fantasies of non-consensual sex. Readers sensitive to portrayals of non-consensual sex should be advised. 

 

What are you reading this week?

 

**Disclaimer: This book is published by Berkley, my publisher, but any books recommended here are from my own TBR pile that I buy with my own money unless otherwise noted. I have not been asked to review this book by the author or publisher. I do not take review requests or feature sponsored content.

Teaser Tuesday: YOURS ALL ALONG

 

 

It's TEASER TUESDAY time! Today it's a snippet from YOURS ALL ALONG, my first m/m romance, out in 2 weeks!

This one has a "bookended" structure, so you'll see Hunter and Devon in present day at the beginning and end of the book, but the middle portion of the book is about what happened in college.

Teaser:

Hunter smirked, and they trudged toward the frat house, the wind seeming to get harder and colder as they walked. Where the hell did California get off having this kind of weather anyway?

But the chill only got marginally better when they slipped inside the front door of the house. Hunter’s breath came out in a white puff. “What the f**k?”

Ames, one of the brothers who’d run ahead of him, stepped out of the kitchen, coffee mug in hand. “Looks like we weren’t the only ones pranking tonight. Heat’s been cut off and some jerkoff threw all of our blankets and bedding into the pool.”

“What?” Dev asked, looking up the staircase.

“Maintenance can’t get out here until the morning. I’m heading over to my girlfriend’s apartment. You might want to find a place to crash, too, or plan on sleeping in your coats tonight.” He patted Dev on his way to the door. “Nice work tonight, gentlemen.”

Devon watched Ames go and then both he and Hunter vaulted up the stairs to their room. When they pushed open the door, they both cursed simultaneously.

“Motherf**k.”

“Son of a bitch.”

Devon’s bed had been completely stripped down to the mattress, and a bag of ice from the local gas station had been opened up and spread across it. A note pinned to the headboard read, Sigmas wet the bed.

Hunter’s bed was stripped as well, but apparently they’d run out of ice because instead of the full ice bath, all of Hunter’s underwear were strewn across the bed, and baby powder had been dumped all over them. His note read, Sigmas sh*t their pants. Hunter stalked over and swept the laundry from his bed, sending a powdery cloud wafting through the room. “Bastards.”

Devon coughed. “At least your bed is mostly dry. And smells baby fresh.”

Hunter looked over at the mess on Devon’s side of the room. “No shit. No way you can sleep on that. Let’s get all of that off of yours so it can dry out. I’ve got extra blankets and pillows in the closet. You can share my bed tonight.”

Devon lifted a brow. “You’re not even going to buy me dinner first? What kind of boy do you think I am?”

Hunter grabbed an ice cube and chucked it at him. “Shut it, Easton. You’re lucky I’m not making you sleep on the petri couch.”

Ugh, no way. Devon shuddered at the thought of putting any exposed skin on the main couch downstairs. Two decades of parties, hookups, and God knows what else on that fabric. “Screw that. I think the floor in the bathroom is cleaner than that couch. But seriously, you sure you’re okay with sharing a bed? I mean, if you’re weirded out by that or you’re worried about what the other guys will say, I’m not going to be offended. I can find somewhere to crash.”

“With one of your on-again, off-again boyfriends?”

“No, I don’t have boyfriends. Too much work. I have acquaintances who I occasionally do dirty things with.”

Hunter sniffed. “No need to go whore yourself out for a bed to sleep in. I’m fine. Just don’t steal my covers, ’cause it’s f**king frigid in here.”

Hunter walked over to the closet and dumped out a laundry bin, lined it with a garbage bag, and then brought it over to Devon’s bed to start moving the ice into it. They worked in silence for a while, just the clink of the ice hitting the plastic container filling the room, but the quiet was anything but calm for Devon. He was going to share a bed with Hunter. They’d roomed together for almost a year. Things were comfortable. Good. Devon admired without crossing any lines. But it was going to be torture sharing that small bed with the warm, hard body of the university’s favorite athlete.

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The Fearless Romantics - Join the Roni Loren Street Team!

 

 

The Fearless Romantics Roni Loren Street Team is officially open to membership!!! Spread the word about my books, get exclusive perks, and meet other readers!

What the heck is a street team? Here’s the deal. A street team means that you love my books (thank you!) and want to spread the word about my books on your social media and to your friends. This is not going to be a high pressure group, but don't join if you're not comfortable with doing that kind of thing. You can continue to hang out here, on FB, or Twitter and still get updates from me. 

But if you're excited to spread the word about my books, then you can join the team and get these awesome perks: 

*Exclusive sneak peeks into new books before anyone else sees them

*Behind the scenes intel on what I'm writing and what’s coming up

*Hang out with yours truly online, including occasional group chats and Q&A sessions.

*Exclusive Giveaways

*Swag

*Welcome Packet (still working on what that will have)

*A special badge to put on your website if you want to display your street team status

*Opportunities for Advanced Reading Copies (limited amounts, awarded contest style unless you’re an established book blogger/reviewer)

*My undying appreciation

Want more info or want to join? Awesome. First be sure to read through the Group Description on the Fearless Romantics FB Page to get an idea what street members do to spread the word and for the rules of the group. Street teams have gotten a bad rep here and there, and I didn't want my group to be one of those. I have clear rules so that this is a genuine, fun, no-pressure group.

Here's how to become a Fearless Romantic: 

Step one: Request to join on the FB group page here.

Step two: Fill out this short online form.

 

That’s it! Look forward to seeing some of y'all there! : )

Roni