Friday, March 06, 2015

Addicted to Writing Presents Friday's Featured Title: Legacy of Angels by Genene Valleau writing as Genie Gabriel



Legacy of Angels
Genie Gabriel
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 3



BLURB:

Claudia deGras was forced into prostitution by her mother at age twelve. In spite of the trauma and abuse, she dreams of a respectful life filled with joy, laughter and the love of one man. Ironically, that man is Patrick O'Shea, a priest facing demons of his own. Since seminary, he has suffered memory loss and darkness at the edges of his vision that extend into his soul. They are drawn together in a deeply emotional journey of healing that becomes a life-and-death challenge to outwit the twisted man-beast who has vowed revenge against all he thinks have wronged him.
"I'm not safe anywhere." Terror beat in Claudia deGras' heart, pulsed through her veins, shut down any rational thought. Get out of here!

EXCERPT:

She bolted toward the door, not daring to look back as the sound of heavy footsteps followed her.

The old brown sedan sitting in the driveway always had the keys in the ignition. Most of the time, it started without much protest.

Claudia flung open the door and cranked the key. The engine caught and roared as she shoved the accelerator to the floor. Two doors banged shut as the old Buick slid sideways on the gravel, then found traction on the pavement.

Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Patrick O'Shea on the wide bench seat beside her, his hand braced against the dashboard for balance, but his face reflected his normal serenity.

Could she trust him? Did she have a choice? And where was she going?

She eased her foot off the accelerator and settled the old sedan into a speed that wouldn't get them stopped by the police, though patrols were rare on this sparsely traveled road in Eastern Oregon.

While she drove the highway in silence, the childhood memories of curses and shouting and fists landing heavy blows on her body receded, and her panicked mind calmed down.

No one had harmed her today. In fact, over the last few weeks the O'Shea siblings, including Patrick, had rearranged their lives to protect her from the man-beast who stalked her.

She shivered.

The man-beast was the real danger.

"Take the next exit." Patrick's deep voice interrupted Claudia's thoughts.

Patrick's wisdom and gentleness had provided a balm to Claudia's soul many times during the time she had been recovering from her physical wounds at his mother's rambling farmhouse. Today, she discovered the emotional fears were deeper than she imagined. Facing the man-beast again--even in her memory--pushed her into a panicked flight.

Now reason was returning and adrenaline ebbing, and Claudia floundered. Once again, Patrick's reassuring voice provided an anchor, so she followed his instructions. Down a paved road for several miles, flanked on either side by acres of rangeland turning dusty gold in the early summer heat. Then another turn onto a graveled road with no other traffic. Finally off any road entirely, bumping over the rangeland to come to a stop under a sheltering copse of trees near a lake.

After Claudia turned off the engine, Patrick opened the car door. "Come with me."

He walked toward the lake, not looking back.

Claudia watched him for long minutes. Was he simply going to leave her?

The land sloped downward where Patrick now walked, making it seem like he was disappearing. When only the top of his head was still in view, panic seized Claudia once again. "Wait!"

She jumped out of the car and slammed the door behind her, running to catch up with Patrick. She topped the knoll and stopped, her chest rising and falling rapidly with exertion and fright.

Patrick stood looking up at her, the same serene expression on his face. Then he turned and continued walking to the water's edge. Hidden in the tall reeds was a raft that looked as if it would sink with the weight of the family of ducks swimming nearby. However, when Patrick climbed on, the craft barely dipped before stabilizing. He turned and reached out his hand in invitation. Cautious but curious, Claudia climbed aboard.

Using a long pole, Patrick pushed them across the lake and under a rocky outcropping. He secured the raft to a sawed-off tree stump that served as a pier post for a make-shift dock and stepped off. "Be careful. It can be slippery."

Intrigued, Claudia once again took Patrick's hand and climbed off the raft. They walked toward a sheer rock cliff topped by ruins of what could have been an ancient stone cathedral. However, as they reached the cliff, Patrick slipped through a notch in one of the rocks. Once inside, he retrieved a flashlight from a pocket in the rock wall and turned it on, revealing a narrow corridor. Claudia followed him down a winding pathway for what seemed like miles. Patrick walked without hesitation, turning down side tunnels until she felt totally disoriented.

At last he stopped in front of a solid rock wall. Well, it appeared solid. Until he slid aside what must have been a doorway, revealing into a cavernous room.

"Where are we?" Claudia asked.


Patrick turned with a half-smile. "Safe. That's what you wanted, right?"

Thursday, March 05, 2015

Addicted to Writing Presents: Catching Meara by Christine Young



Title: Catching Meara
Author: Christine Young
Genre: Erotic Romance
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 5

Buy at: www.roguephoenixpress.com

Meara Thorton was a feisty, world-class computer hacker—cornered by the FBI and shockingly given the chance to be their newly acquired technical analyst.  Brilliant and intuitive, yet aching with the loss of everyone she has cared about, her restless heart led her to discover a love she fought and a world she didn't know could possibly exist.

Jace McKenna was an enigma, a loner, impossibly handsome, sincere and committed. The Apache shapeshifter blood running through his veins burned hotter than the blistering Sierra Madre sun. Jace knew the moment he caught Meara's scent she was his for eternity.

Delane of Coffee Time Romance & More says:

"Catching Meara is a superbly written mystery that draws readers in and makes them a part of the team. The characters are vivid and provide a perfect canvas for the life of a unique team that catches some truly nasty villains. Ms. Young provides a perfect blend of paranormal, mystery and romance providing the reader an entertaining adventure."
Rating: 4 cups out of 5


EXCERPT

Meara had been seconds from revelation, mere seconds. Now quivering with terror, she huddled in the corner of her electrified office while lights flashed and popped all around her, knowing there was no where to run. Monitors flashed and burst, exploding and sending shards of liquid fire into the air. A cop entered the small room, his arms stretched forward, gun in both hands and a flashlight on top of his gun.

Three more cops followed behind. No, they were government agents. The logo printed in white across their chest announced their profession.

Bright lights swept the room in a slow steady arc, searching for her. Finally resting on her face, she shielded her eyes. Smoke from the crucified computers filled the cubicle, making the agents choke. Sweat from fear beaded on her forehead, and her heart lurched to her throat. She closed her hands over her heart as if she could slow the furious beating.

"Hewitt, check this out. There might be more than this one. Barrister go search through the other rooms."

"Right, McKenna."

"My name is Jace McKenna," the man said as he approached cautiously, kicking debris from under foot until he stood above her. "Put your hands in the air."

His voice held so much authority and sounded so calm. For a moment she thought he meant to reassure then she remembered she was his prisoner. Well, she would be as soon as she complied with his demands.

Jace appeared dark, dangerous, handsome and tall, she noted at first. Very tall, which was hard to miss, since she was skinny and short. His eyes were an amber color with a hint of green. He towered over her. Beneath the deceiving bulkiness of his bulletproof vest, she observed next, his shoulders were very broad, and though his hips were lean, his thighs, tightly hugged by his jeans, were muscled and powerful.

His hair was blacker than the midnight sky, nearly indigo with its sheen, his amber eyes were cast into a rugged face that appeared naturally tanned. He was probably somewhere in his late twenties or early thirties. He seemed fierce, alive with a striking tension and a volatile energy that seemed to exude from him.

Shaking, sweat dripping down her face, Meara slowly raised her trembling arms. "D-don't shoot--me, please" She heard the pathetic whimper in her voice as she blinked the stinging sweat from her eyes where it melded with her mascara. Her heart pounded so hard against her chest she was sure it would burst through her ribs.

"Stand up, slowly." He swept the flashlight as well as the gun up and down the length of her body, which had been curled into a tight fetal position.

Rising to her feet, she leaned against the wall behind her, trying to keep her hands up and not fall flat on her face. She wiggled her butt against the wall and inched her way to a standing position. Her life flashed in front of her in a series of leaps and bounds until she saw the faces of her parents.

"Do as he says," they whispered. "Everything will turn out fine. You'll see. We love you." Then, just as they appeared, they vanished.

Their faces faded into the smoke and flashing lights. Her eyes open wide, she gazed at her enemy--her jailor. The man who was here to arrest her. Mind games, or was it mind think that her parents used to play with her, teaching her to communicate through thoughts instead of words. She focused on his brain, sending out feelers, trying to read his thoughts and trying to tell him she was no threat.

The next moment he was beside her, grasping one of her arms, and in one swift move he had turned her, both hands were behind her back and handcuffed. Her breath stopped for a moment. The movement had been so sudden she was thrown against the wall. Her face flattened on the smooth surface. Yet she was glad for that because the impact brought her back to the reality of this moment. Her mind cleared for a brief second. For courage she inhaled a swift deep breath.







Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Addicted to Writing Presents Allura by Christine Young on sale now for $0.99



Christine Young
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 4

Buy at Amazon:
Buy at Barnes & Noble:

REVIEW: 
Title: Allura Genre: Historical Author: Christine Young 
Reviewer: Chrissy Dionne Reviewer Email: RJChrissyDionne@yahoo.com 

Christine Young’s ALLURA is a delightful historical novel full of suspense, lovable characters, humor and a budding romance between two characters determined not to fall in love. Allura and Hunter’s stubborn, determined natures allowed for some interesting scenes as they attempted to get one up on each other. As a modern day woman I felt bad for Allura because technically her husband would dictate every aspect of her life and the freedom she loves would be a thing of the past. Hunter is unbending as far as to how he believes a wife should behave but falling in love changes him and his perception of Allura. Hunter and Allura are the main focus of this story but there are secondary characters whom I absolutely adored and would love to revisit in future novels (hint, hint). Especially the youngest sister Aiden and Hunter’s trusted friend Blade. He doesn’t believe in love and she’s determined to do whatever’s necessary to get him to notice her. SNIPPET— Allura has come to treasure her freedom and the adventures she shares with her sisters and her cousins but her father’s decision to find her a husband threatens that freedom. He’s placed an ad in the times in search of a man strong and smart enough to discover where exactly it is that the girls venture when they leave the safety of the castle.

BLURB: 

Allura McClellan is horrified by her father’s decision to take out an ad in the Times awarding her to the man strong enough and smart enough to win her hand and uncover her secrets. She’s an intelligent young woman who takes great delight in the freedom allotted to her by her father. She’s well aware that marriage would effectively curtail the adventures she’s shared with her sisters and cousins.

Hunter Gray is nothing like the other men who’ve arrived to vie for Allura’s hand in marriage and everything that goes along with it. However, he is the first to refuse to concede defeat and pursue her despite her attempts to disguise her true appearance. It’s her temperament that is of more concern to him than her looks. Hunter has worked all his life with the hope of someday owning his own land. Now that it looks like there’s a very real possibility that everything he’s ever wanted is within reach nothing is going to deter him – including Miss Allura’s disagreeable disposition.


Eddington, Scotland 1815

"You can’t plan to wed me to that--that man down there!" Allura McClellan’s heart thundered and lodged in her throat. Balled into fists her hands trembled. "You promised I could marry for love. I thought when the last man failed to discover this imaginary secret you think I have, you would stop this craziness. I thought you would take the ad out of the Times and the other papers."

From the boxing ring below, fist met flesh, the sound echoing throughout. Hunter Gray whirled and ducked. He guarded his face to block the stinging blows his opponent rained down upon him. He spun and ducked again. The man he fought countered the attack, but he did not move fast enough. Hunter’s next jab was so fast and so hard the other man didn’t block the punch. The man staggered backwards, blood running from his eye. Men yelled and cheered for the two combatants. Hunter paused and spoke to the man he practiced with before the match continued once more.

Allura saw her life as she had planned it slip away as if it was grains of sand in an hour glass. She stopped pacing and watched the men below. She turned on her father. "The ad in the Times--giving me away to any man--you have gone too far. A marriage of convenience is barbaric. You promised." For a moment, she closed her eyes. She did not want to acknowledge anything that went on here. It was not her fault she could not find a man she loved. What horrific bit of bad luck had found her?

The laird cleared his throat. "Perhaps I have not gone far enough or soon enough. And the ad did not promise you to just any man. He must be strong enough and smart enough to win your hand."

It was not Allura’s nature to allow others to rule her fate. “These men,” she waved her hand in the air, frustration sweeping recklessly within. "They don’t want me. They come for one reason only. They are greedy and hungry for power. You have taught me everything I need to know. I can run your estate and all of your holdings. I’ve studied endless hours. I know the men who work for you. I swear I’ll defy your wishes. At the altar I will say no."

The McClellan’s grin faded as quickly as it had appeared and without further thought, he said, "Perhaps not, you are beautiful lass--one with rare promise. And," he stroked his chin, "no matter how much book learning a woman has she cannot dictate her own life. It is up to the men in her life to make sure she is happy and provided for."

A strained silence followed. She sagged against the stone wall. As if sensing her vulnerable position, she stiffened. Outraged and furious she looked upon her father. "They are money grubbers and want your land--our land. They have no right to any of your estate."

The McClellan held back for a moment, seemingly aware there was more than just a little truth in what Allura said. "How indeed?" he questioned her. Yet his smile was tight, forced. "I grow old. I only want this land secured and my daughters happy before I die. You are twenty-two. I have given you ample opportunity to fall in love. I thought it time to bring new blood to this land, a new man. I thought perhaps one would take your fancy."

"That man," she began. Her hand shook when she pointed at the man who danced and whirled avoiding each blow as if he dallied in child's play. She trembled so violently she could not speak. “Is an Englishman.”


Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Addicted to Writing Presents Tell Tale Tuesday: Healing Fire by Angela Castle



Healing Fire: Book Three in the Kingdom of Kell Series
Angela Castle
angelacastleleros@yahoo.com

Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 5

Buy at Barnes & Noble:  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/healing-fire-angela-castle/1113281937?ean=2940015594591

Melor, an elite warrior of the planet Kell, has come to Earth and the city of L.A to find a Protected to call his own, but all the women reject his attempts to court them. Dejected, he decides to return to Kell, but an earthquake sends Melor through the portal and right into the path of an oncoming car.

Summer Rose, a widow, lives near the Humboldt Redwood Forest of California with her daughter, Blossom. While driving home late one night, she hits someone with her car.

A powerful attraction pulls them together, but when he tells her he is from another planet, Summer is convinced Melor is crazy. Melor is determined to heal the pain of Summer’s body and heart, and prove to the stubborn woman that he is not crazy.


EXCERPT

Rejected again, Melor clenched his fist as he watched his friend kneel down and present the protector's bracelet to the woman they both had been courting the past four days.

Chosen by Jane, with the aid of the Ruby of Worth, it would glow every time a woman worthy to live in Kell came into the dating agency.

The beautiful ebony-skinned woman had now chosen the youthful warrior, Kina. Melor turned away, marching quickly through the narrow halls. He had obviously wasted his time.

In the city of Los Angeles, he met many beautiful earth women, of different sizes and personalities, the most desirable ones, soft tall with attractive curves to drive any sane Kell man mad with desire. His smiles and words of flattery; nothing but wasted breath for all eight women had chosen other Kell men, over him.

Was he too gruff or tall for the smaller human woman? The other Kell men had been a few inches shorter. They had also cut their hair to attract a female, while he refused to change anything other than his clothing. Was he really so different and undesirable as a protector?

He left the embracing couple, making his way to the adjoining comfortable room set up for Kell men. The larger sized room held a plain wooden table, a few chairs, some bookcases and a row of lockers. One to hold their weapons and another with larger sized human clothes so the Kell men could make themselves appear more human before they greeted the human women.

He yanked open the cabinet which held his blades and clothing. He wanted to get back to the familiarity of his home; to ride his stag again and train with the other men. He needed to work out his angry disappointment before his rage got the better of him.

"Melor?"

A soft hand touched his arm. He spun around to stare straight at Lady Jane, wife or protected of his Kell commander Drystan.

Concern shadowed her lovely blue gaze. He had been with the warrior party the day they found her. Jane had defied death after falling though a portal, which connected their worlds. Every warrior had desired her. She was the first female they had seen since the brutal murder of their own women and children by the Drac. But the Commander's fierce possessiveness over the earth woman made them all keep a safe distance.

A pang of envy mixed with his rage. His hopes and expectations of finding one woman seemed to crumble at his feet. He longed to find a woman who looked at him the same way the other women looked at their Kell men. Every rejection left him feeling bitter and hollow inside.

"Forgive me, Lady Jane." He stepped back to give her a respectful bow. "I wish to return to Kell. There is nothing for me here."

"Don't lose heart, Melor. Just because you have not found your protected today, does not mean you won't. These things take time."

"Do you know why? … Have any of the ladies told you why I am not worthy?" He needed to know, to understand.

"I am sorry, Melor. One of them did mention you tended to scowl a lot, but you are far from unworthy. You are brave and handsome. I just know there is a lady out there for you. You should not let a few rejections make you give up. I know you would never give up in a battle." She raised a challenging eyebrow.

Melor shook his head. "A battle and the blade is all I know. This battle of the heart is a very different matter. Not everyone is destined to find someone. My place is on Kell, to protect and guard the people, including the new women."

Jane studied him for along moment. "I think you are wrong. I strongly believe there is someone for everyone. You need to believe it too."

The conviction of her words did nothing to relieve the lonely ache in his heart. But he had made his choice.

"I have been a warrior for too long; have witnessed and been the cause of too much death. Women from this world are not for me. I thank you for your concern and for your efforts, but I must insist on returning to Kell."

Her chest heaved in a soft sigh. "Very well if that is what you want. There is another lady who's just come into the office, maybe…"

"No," he snapped with a little more force than he had intended. He immediately regretted his burst of anger. Jane had worked tirelessly to help the men of Kell; to find them brides from among her people. Women who could accept the fact they were from another world. Women of great value and worth.

"Forgive me. I would appreciate it if a portal back to Kell could be opened."

"I shall go fetch the crystal and tell Drystan you are leaving." She turned away.

Melor watched her walk out of the door. He ripped off the t-shirt, replacing the coarse fabric with the softer Kell shirt; put on his belt and attached the blade. His crystal dagger, he slipped into his boot.

From his pocket, he pulled out the golden promise bracelet; the same one his father had given his mother. The gems gleamed even in the dull light of the artificially lit room. He shook his head before shoving the bracelet back into his pocket. Perhaps he would gift it to one of the younger warriors. His life and duty was to protect the Kingdom of Kell. He would continue to do so until the end of his days.

Jane returned and close behind her was his commander, head of the King's warriors. They had fought many battles side by side and Melor was proud to see his commander so content with his protected lady. Cupped in his large arms, a little infant girl wiggled and fussed. The large man handed the babe to her mother.

They named the first human-Kell child, Joy. He still remembered the week-long celebration; much Kell wine had been drunk by all.

Kina walked in from the other room, tightly holding his new wife's hand.

"Lady Jane, I wish to take my protected Lady Maria to Kell."

"This is so exciting. I can hardly believe this is real, that I'd ever find someone as wonderful as Kina," the dark-haired beauty exclaimed, smiling up at her new protector.

Melor stiffened and gave a curt bow to the couple. "Congratulations. May the Moon Goddess bless your union."

Drystan stared at him. "Jane tells me you wish to leave too, Melor."

"Yes, Commander. I think it best."

"Not everyone finds their match first try, my friend. I hope you will come back and try again."

Melor held his tongue not wishing to have another conversation as to his reasons in wanting to return to Kell.

Drystan nodded. "Very well."

Thankfully, his commander did not say anything else, but must have seen the unspoken words in the other man's eyes. No doubt the commander would speak when it was time to return to Kell.

"Oh, isn't she the cutest little thing you ever saw?" Maria broke away from Kina to coo over the infant. Her round chubby face and wide, dark blue eyes made her the center of attention wherever Jane and Drystan took their daughter.

Jane's smiled with loving pride.

Another pang of envy hit him knowing he would never know the feeling of holding his own child. It did not matter anymore.

"If you please commander, a portal." He did not wish to sound insistent, but being in the room with the happy couples made his stomach knot.

Drystan pulled out a long slim shiny black box from his back pocket. Opening it, he saw several gleaming blue gems. He picked one out, handing it Melor.

"Proceed, and the portal will close after you. See the Palace courtyard in your mind and will it to open; and it shall."

Melor took the gem, smooth and cool in his palm, and did as Drystan instructed. In his mind, he saw the wide expanse of calming grey stone of the floor, the tall walls of the palace imbued with colorful crystals. Before them a blue swirling mist began to grow rapidly until it was large enough to accommodate his size.

Kina retrieved Maria, scooping her up into his arms. She gazed in awe at the amazing display of gently swirling blue mist.

"It is a new custom to carry our protected through the portal." Kina grinned at Maria, carrying her forward, vanishing into the portal. Melor made to follow, but the infant's sudden screams jolted him, and he turned to look at her.

Jane rocked her child trying to calm her, just as the ground began to shake under their feet.

"Earthquake! Get under the door frame!" Jane yelled.

Drystan grabbed hold of Jane and the baby, pushing them under the door frame and holding on to the edge.

Melor lurched forward, unstable on the shaking ground. He braced his feet apart to steady himself. From the corner of his eye, he saw the normally placid swirling portal begin to spark. The swirl turned into a fast churning vortex. Bright blue and white lightning bolts shot out in haphazard directions. The lightning struck objects at random, exploding chairs into splinters, and shredding the books on the shelves.

Melor ducked one lightning bolt as it whizzed by his ear narrowly missing his head and hitting the weapons locker behind him, blowing it into a million pieces. He dived and rolled to avoid a flying dagger. He jumped to his feet, right on the edge of the violent portal. His arms cart-wheeled as the ground continued to shake, but he was too far off balance; he tumbled backwards into the darkness.