My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I really enjoyed this story! A little romance mixed with mystery equals an enjoyable read! Kept me entertained in traffic!
Far Reaching Consequences
(Crescent City Kings, #2)
Published by: Blushing Books Publications
Publication date: January 15th 2020
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Phoebe needs a second chance at life.
In the aftermath of the devastation from her failed marriage, Phoebe returns to her old stomping grounds to open her own bed and breakfast. Starting over is the bravest thing she’s ever done – or so she thinks. But opening her front door to find a blast from her past on her front porch changes all that. The teenager she’d once known has become a jaw-dropping, dominant man in his prime.
He wasn’t looking for a relationship until she blazed back into his life.
Graham runs his own construction business, remodeling homes, and building brand new ones. When his buddy gives him a lead on a new project, he never expects to run into Phoebe, the woman he shared a single kiss with eons ago. Nor is he prepared for the Dominant in him to stake his claim before the end of their first meeting. He wanted her in high school but there had been too wide a gulf separating them. Now, Graham will stop at nothing until he makes her his. But there are larger forces at work, attempting to tear them apart.
When everything Phoebe holds dear becomes a target, Graham will risk it all for the one woman he knows he can never live without.
Publisher’s Note: This steamy second chance romance contains elements of power exchange.
Get book 1 – Lone Survivor – for only $2.99 for a limited time!
The rubber soles of Phoebe’s taupe-colored work boots squeaked against the golden cinnamon hardwood floor. Daisy’s paws clicked as she trotted beside her. Phoebe would have to trim Daisy’s nails again. The plantation itself was in sad disarray after decades of neglect. In some ways, the plantation was strangely like her life—or at least the way it had been, until she made the commitment to fix it. For the last thirty years, this place had stood vacant and unloved. The previous owners had been unable to sell the property and unable to invest in her upkeep. This grand old lady had become a dilapidated ruin of a bygone era.
Phoebe hoped to fix this place up, just like she had her life. She believed, with a bit of elbow grease, she would be able to turn the plantation back into a showpiece—one for which people would pay for the experience of staying there. New Orleans and the surrounding area was a pre-eminent tourist destination that Phoebe planned to capitalize on.
She eventually wanted her own airport shuttle for guests. But that was getting ahead of herself. The first step was a complete renovation.
It was only recently that Phoebe had been able to actualize her dream of owning Riverland to renovate it into a fully operational bed and breakfast. She’d used the inheritance her late grandpa, Ralph Mackenzie, had bequeathed her in his will a year ago. The tidy sum he’d left her had been enough to buy this place outright, along with the small acreage surrounding the old plantation, with money left over for the needed renovations.
Financially, it would be tight at first until she started having paying guests. That was why she waited tables at the strip joint Bayou Sin on Bourbon Street in the meantime. Not because she loved wearing skintight clothes with men trying to grope her, but it helped supplement her income.
This plantation was infused with all her hope for the future, one that belonged to her and her alone.
As she reached what had once been a grand entrance, with its heavy, double oak doors the same warm cinnamon as the floors, she drew the right-side door open, a greeting on her lips as she spread them in a fake smile like the one she wore serving drinks. Daisy’s whole body vibrated, her attention directed at the man on the opposite side of the door. The initial punch of fear disintegrated as she studied him and memories dulled by time and distance surfaced.
He was tall, a good six two, and built like a professional baseball player with broad shoulders and a head full of dark chestnut hair that was a few weeks past needing a trim. His button-down ivory dress shirt was rolled up to his elbows, leaving his tanned, brawny forearms bare. The shirt was tucked into a pair of well-worn blue jeans with a brown leather tool belt slung around his lean waist.
But it was the man’s eyes, artic blue, making her think of frost and snow, in the tan, slightly weathered face that caused a bell of recognition to sound through her and made her lips curl into a genuine smile.
“Graham? Graham Layton, is that really you? You’re the contractor Dante recommended?” Joy filtered into her voice as she stared at the blast from her past. It had been almost nineteen years since the night of the winter formal in high school. The night she had always considered one of the best of her life.
Born in St. Louis, Missouri, Anya grew up listening to Cardinals baseball and reading anything she could get her hands on. She remembers her mother saying if only she would read the right type of books instead binging her way through the romance aisles at the bookstore, she’d have been a doctor. While Anya never did get that doctorate, she graduated cum laude from the University of Missouri-St. Louis with a M.A. in History.
Anya is a Bestselling and Award-Winning Author published in multiple fiction genres. She also writes urban fantasy and paranormal romance under the name, Maggie Mae Gallagher. A total geek at her core, when she is not writing, she adores attending the latest comic con or spending time with her family. She currently lives in the midwest with her two furry felines.
Willow is just your average sixteen-year-old girl. Okay, maybe not so average. She can heal animals. But for her own safety, her veterinarian parents have made her promise not to use her powers. Unfortunately, sometimes her compassion takes over, and she can’t help … well … helping.
Willow is a Droit, but hides her Droitism because people like her are feared and hated by those without special abilities. Two of Willow’s schoolmates, rumored to be Droits, have simultaneously disappeared.
When Willow’s non-Droit friend, Rain, is targeted, Willow wonders whether she should get involved–even if that means putting herself in the line of fire.
A mysterious new friend, Trae, just might be the key to unlock her courage.
In the end, she has a choice: she can deny who she is or declare her ability to heal, but either way, her life will never be the same again.
Guest post by Carly Louise Wilson
As I have a penchant for any supernatural/fantasy books, this was definitely my kind of read.
The book is about a teenage girl named Willow, who discovers from a young age that she has a magical ability. However, in a world where being different is shunned, her parents beg her to keep her talent hidden.
Willow struggles with hiding her true self, always craving to let her talent be known, as why wouldn’t you heal sick and an ailing pets if you could?
In Willow’s society anyone with any magical ability is branded a ‘Droit’, and instead of society fearing them, they are mocked and taunted, all on the idea of getting them to use their powers and be punished.
Willow has to make the tough decision to remain a mystery to those around her, or to show what she can really do without fear.
This book was easy to read, and you relate to Willow’s gut instincts. You hate the world she lives in on her behalf, and I found myself often screaming at her parents for wanting to suppress her talent out of their own fears.
It is well-written and thought out and a story that enables your imagination to come out and play. If you love the likes of X-Men or even Twilight then this book will be for you.
A page-turner with lots of intrigue to keep you hooked.
Read an excerpt
I saved our cat’s life four years ago when I was twelve.
How? I healed her. That was part of my Droit ability, but I didn’t know it then.
Random, our cat who lived at our animal clinic, had been sick for months, but my parents are veterinarians, so they were managing her disease. She wasn’t in pain until the day I was hanging out at the clinic and found her panting and writhing while lying on her side.
Mom was in the surgical room setting a fracture and couldn’t be interrupted. Dad was out picking up meds.
Random’s eyes fluttered and she let out a puny cry. I held her, wishing I could help. When I stroked her fur around the knobby tumors on her back, my fingertips tingled and glowed red. I had no idea what was happening.
Confused, I flapped my hands as if to put out a fire. The color faded, but as soon as I placed my fingers back on Random’s side, the glowing started again. I shook my head in bewilderment and then closed my eyes, allowing whatever this was to happen. Lightning bolts flashed behind my eyelids. My hands seemed to have minds of their own, this time locking onto Random’s body. Pain shot up my fingers and seared all the way to my neck.
My head felt heavy, like it was full of electric sparks. I groaned and shuddered but still couldn’t pull my hands away from her.
I don’t know how long I stayed that way before she purred, and I opened my eyes to see her licking her paw as if nothing had happened. I ran my fingers along her back. Her tumors had disappeared.
The room spun. What had happened?
Random jumped down and darted away with more spring than she’d had in months. I was certain I was seeing things. I blinked, but there she sat near the sink, giving her face a bath.
My fingers slowly faded. I turned them palm up, then palm down, studying them, trying to find a reason for what had happened, but there was none.
Mom came into the room, holding her hands in the air on the way to the faucet to scrub. “Were you looking for me?”
“Random doesn’t have cancer anymore,” I said, excitedly.
“Oh, really?” She paused with her hands under the water and gave me a peculiar look with her head cocked, eyebrows raised.
“I healed her.” Nausea bubbled up from my gut. I raced into the bathroom.
After I puked and returned to Mom, she was sitting in a chair with Random in her lap, parting her hair. “Her tumors are gone.”
“I know.” Nausea still clung to my ribs, but it wasn’t as bad. I was too excited about Random being better that it didn’t matter.
“What exactly did you do, Willow?”
Mom stared at me with wide eyes. I thought she’d be proud of me, but she didn’t act that way.
“My hands mended her,” I said.
“L-l-like h-h-how?” she asked.
“I don’t know. It just happened. I felt sorry for her. She was in pain, and the next thing I knew, my hands lit up and energy flowed from me to her.” I stared at my fingers again.
“Has this happened before?”
I shook my head.
“Good.” She nodded, licked her lips, and lowered her voice. “Can you make it stop?”
I shrugged. I didn’t know. “I can try.”
“Don’t do it again, and whatever you do, don’t ever do it in public.” Her voice was just above a whisper, and she glanced over her shoulder at the door.
“Why?” Wasn’t it a good thing that Random was better? Tears welled in my eyes.
“You won’t be safe if people know what you can do,” she continued in a hushed tone. “Promise me you won’t do it again.”
Swallowing hard, I nodded. “I promise.” But I didn’t understand.
She’s also a John Maxwell Certified Coach and Trainer.
Her sweet spot is the center of her pickleball paddle, but it’s also empowering moms to regain their purpose and significance in order to live a life that matters and positively influence others. Her energy is contagious and focuses on unlocking the self-advocate in others and encouraging them to dream big.
As the mother of a recovering addict, she spends most of her time advocating and coaching moms of addicted loved ones. She podcasts at Moms Letting Go. If you’re a mom of an adult addict, find her free guidebook, at MomsLettingGo.com.
Michelle is living her dream—writing every day and thanking God for the stories He puts in her path.
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(Bossy Brothers, #5)
Publication date: January 13th 2020
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense
Read as book five in the Bossy Brothers series or as a standalone book.
Lonnie Derringer is a filthy-mouthed, dirty-talking, long-distance fling.
(That’s been going on for two years.)
I know, I know. That’s not a fling. This might be getting serious.
I think about him all the time. I look forward to our quickie lunch dates and the way he whispers in my ear every night from two-thousand miles away.
He’s the best boyfriend I never had.
Until I find out his name isn’t Lonnie, it’s Alonzo.
Until I find out he’s not some boring accountant with a dead-end job, he’s a six-foot-four, yoked-out, tatted-up fisherman who never wears a shirt!
That’s right, girls. He’s been catfishing me online for two… freaking… years!
And then he becomes more than just the best boyfriend I’ve never had.
He becomes my target.
Tara Tanner is the perfect long-distance girlfriend who lives in the Land of Far, Far Away.
She’s a blonde, bookish bundle of sexy-overachiever. A wicked little siren with a filthy mind and an eye for pencil skirts. And every time I ask her to ‘send-me-a-pic-or-it-never-happened’ she goes above and beyond.
She is, quite simply, the most perfect woman I’ve ever had the pleasure to never meet.
I didn’t set out to lie to her and I didn’t expect to meet her.
But one day she shows up at my house, and guess what?
She wasn’t the only one being catfished for two years.
Because she’s not who she said she was either.
Bossy Brothers: Alonzo can be read as book five in the Bossy Brothers series or as a standalone story and features a sexy game of guess-who between a librarian obsessed with pencil skirts and a fisherman tatted up with mermaids. It’s long-distance fling filled with dirty-talking, sexy selfies, and safely-hidden secrets… until it isn’t.
Until the day they meet and realize… Love in the Land of fake Far, Far Away can’t ever compare to the real thing.
“Fort Collins Public Library, how can I help you?”
“Yes. Hello. I have a question about a book.”
“Yes, sir. That’s wonderful. I can’t wait to hear it.”
“Well, it’s not a question about a book, per se. I’m looking for something specific. To read.”
“Well, you’re talking to the right girl. I’m a book expert. I even have the pencil skirt, tight white blouse, severe ponytail, and dark-framed glasses to prove it.”
“Hmmm. What’s your name? It’s just… I like to use a woman’s name when I talk books with them.”
“Ohhh… Tara. I’m Tara. Do you… like women who talk books back to use your name as well?”
“Hmmm. Intriguing question, Tara. I’ve never thought about it before. But yes. Yes. I’d like that. I’m Lonnie. A too-smart, button-down-shirt-wearing accountant who loves numbers and making things… balance.”
“Balancing. I like that.”
“What kind of balancing are you picturing? Like… financial statements and checkbooks?”
“Nnn-nooooo. More like… the kind of balance you need when a hot, sexy accountant is fucking you up against a wall.”
“Sorry. My imagination is… well, wild. And I’m a bit bored at the moment. There’s absolutely no one else here in the library with me. I guess I’m just looking for a little fun while no one’s watching.”
“Are you sure you’re a librarian?”
“Positive. But I’d like to clarify one thing before we continue. I don’t mind people watching.”
“Now tell me. What kind of specific book are you looking for? I’m excited at the prospect of pleasing you.”
“This might sound a little weird, Tara.”
“Oh, don’t worry about that. I’ve heard it all, Lonnie.”
“It’s a very… odd trope I’m looking for.”
“Trust me, Lonnie. I’m here to help. What trope are you looking for today?”
“OK, so… it’s the one about the… well, let’s call him under-socialized—”
“Got it. Our protagonist is a man who is maybe… an accountant?”
“Great. Keep going.”
“And he meets this… other under-socialized person. Female. Maybe a…”
“Yes! Exactly. This accountant meets a librarian and they…”
“Have cam sex?”
“Mmmm… not quite. But close.”
“OK. I think I understand. But I need a little clarification, if you don’t mind.”
“I don’t mind at all, Tara. How can I clarify?”
“Well, this accountant. Can you give me a better description? Just so, you know, I can clearly envision this… book… in my head.”
“Sure. He’s about six foot four.”
“Yeah. He’s big.”
“Big as in…?”
“But he’s big in other ways too.”
“Yeah. Like… you know. Biiiig.”
“Big as in… I can’t fit my hand around it?”
“How big are your hands?”
“Small to average.”
“Then definitely not.”
“I see. OK. Got it. He’s girthy.”
“Well, his hair is light brown.”
“Let’s go with hazel.”
“Hazel green? Hazel blue? Or hazel brown?”
“Oh. I’m eating pudding. And I just licked my spoon. It’s delicious.”
“Mmmm. Pudding. OK. I have a better picture of our hero. But what of our heroine? This… librarian.”
“Well… she’s a typical librarian. And you’re a librarian.”
“That I am, Lonnie.”
“Well, this librarian is on the small side.”
“Small as in petite? Or small as in… not more than a mouthful?”
“Oh. So she’s ample in all the right places. Like me.”
“Like you, huh?”
“And she wears… well, pencil skirts.”
“Also like me.”
“And a tight, white, button-down blouse that shows off her ample…”
“I was going to say ‘pocket protector.’”
“You’re making this difficult.”
“I’m on my lunch break here.”
“Oh, am I disturbing you?”
“Not at all. I’m just waiting for you to get to the good parts.”
“The part where they bond over books and numbers?”
“No, the part where he talks dirty to her on the phone while she’s on her lunch break so she can come on her fingers and make him pretend to lick them.”
“It’s not funny. Come on!”
“I know. I’m done with it. I gave you the perfect in and all you had to do was say, ‘Yeah, the kind of balance when he fucks her against a wall’ and we’d be halfway home right now!”
“Where’s the fun in that?”
“You’re doing this on purpose! You know I only get thirty minutes for lunch today! It’s book club Monday and I’ve got every damn housewife in Fort Collins in here with her wine-stained book-of-the-month-club edition paperback acting like she’s all literate and shit.”
I laugh again.
“Lonnie. Phone-fuck me right now. Or I’m hanging up and never answering your pervy calls again.”
JA Huss is the New York Times Bestselling author of 321 and has been on the USA Today Bestseller’s list 21 times in the past five years. She writes characters with heart, plots with twists, and perfect endings.
Her new sexy sci-fi romance and paranormal romance pen name is KC Cross and she writes novels and teleplays collaboratively with actor and screenwriter, Johnathan McClain.
Her books have sold millions of copies all over the world, the audio version of her semi-autobiographical book, Eighteen, was nominated for a Voice Arts Award and an Audie Award in 2016 and 2017 respectively. Her audiobook, Mr. Perfect, was nominated for a Voice Arts Award in 2017. Her audiobook, Taking Turns, was nominated for an Audie Award in 2018. Five of her book were optioned for a TV series by MGM television in 2018. And her book, Total Exposure, was nominated for a RITA Award in 2019.
She lives on a ranch in Central Colorado with her family.
(Bones MC, #5)
Published by: Changeling Press
Publication date: January 21st 2020
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
Rain — The gangs of the underground can be brutal. I know this well and have the scars to prove it. So when a team of rough-looking men start nosing around the slums of Rockwell, I make it my business to know what they’re up to. One in particular catches my eye. He’s rough and scary looking, but his touch is gentle when it needs to be. He’s older and more experienced in every way than me, but I’m still drawn to him. I’m not sure why, but I want him. And when I let him take me, I’ll savor the experience until it’s time to go.
Arkham — The little pixie warrior is a conundrum if ever there was one. She’s strong and capable but scared inside and out. I can’t fix what’s broken inside her, but I can share her burdens and make her part of my circle. I’ll take her with me, with Bones MC. She’ll be protected there.
But who’s gonna protect her from me?
Romance author by night, emergency room tech/clerk by day, Marteeka Karland works really hard to drive everyone in her life completely and totally nuts. She has been creating stories from her warped imagination since she was in the third grade. Her love of writing blossomed throughout her teenage years until it developed into the totally unorthodox and irreverent style her English teachers tried so hard to rid her of. Now, she breathes life into faeries, space hunters, werewolves, vampires, shapeshifters, and a few just plane ole ordinary people. She loves to see the awkward, self-conscious band geek get the captain of the football team and make him beg for it.
Published by: Acorn Publishing
Publication date: April 30th 2020
Genres: Historical, Romance, Women’s Fiction
“Unlike some war stories that focus on intense, harsh and graphic depictions of post-combat trauma, this tale unfolds gently, like an Edna Ferber novel, spread across many decades, detailing the impact this soldier’s illness has on an entire family, including children and grandchildren. KEEP FOREVER is a wonderful, emotionally satisfying read that I highly recommend. ”
GARY SEIGEL, author of “Haskell Himself”
Paul O’Brien’s idyllic childhood in Southern California comes to a halt when his mother dies in the summer before his senior year of high school and a very different persona of his father emerges – isolating himself inside the house, turning to alcohol for comfort, and barely noticing his only child. Simultaneously, the war in Vietnam is sending shock waves around the world and young men from one coast to the other are being called upon to serve. Paul enlists in the Marines before receiving his draft notice.
Elizabeth Sutton is eager to gain some independence from her father’s old fashioned notions and looking forward to her first year in high school. At fifteen years old, tragedy strikes with the loss of both parents in an auto accident, turning her childhood into one of responsibility and worry overnight. The four siblings are scattered when her nine-year-old twin sisters are sent to live with their Aunt and Uncle on Nantucket Island, and Elizabeth is left behind in Boston with their grandmother. Her older brother, Sam, enlists in the Marines, eager to join the conflict a world away as opposed to dealing with the one unfolding at home.
A bond develops between Paul and Sam in Vietnam, and both are injured in a bloody battle that costs Sam his right hand and sets the stage for a lifetime of nightmares and sleepless nights for Paul. Matched by similar tragedies at a young age, Elizabeth and Paul’s first introduction by Sam upon their return from Vietnam is the beginning of friendship and love that survives five decades.
After marrying, welcoming their first child, and inheriting a small beach house, the couple adapts to their new surroundings, but distant memories of Vietnam continue to haunt Paul. In an era when veterans refuse to speak of their pain and the government denies that thousands of soldiers are coming home irreparably damaged, he is left to deal with the challenge of caring for his loved ones amidst his his erratic flashback episodes and moods. As their lives unravel from the lingering effects of PTSD, Elizabeth learns to accept the burden that Paul brought home, and together they make their own memories to keep forever.
A True Story
Alexa Kingaard was born in San Diego, CA and has lived most of her life in the area. She currently resides in Carlsbad and is the mother of an adult son and daughter who continue to be her biggest fans and cheerleaders. A realtor for fifteen years, she remains involved with her profession and praises her brokers and clients for giving her the nod to be creative.
She gives all the credit for completing her debut novel, KEEP FOREVER, to her inspiration and late ex-husband, Jeff, who battled the residual effects of the Vietnam War for decades after his return.
Her second novel, MY NAME IS ROSE, will be released through Acorn Publishing March 15, 2019.
Tasting Her Christmas Cookies
Publication date: November 19th 2019
Genres: Adult, Comedy, Romance
Winter is coming—and unfortunately it’s bringing Christmas with it.
I loathe the holiday. I hate holiday parties, fragrant decorations, and hokey movies. If I had my way it would be winter all year round and never Christmas.
Nothing burns like the cold—except a hot oven.
That’s right; against my better judgment I agreed to let The Great Christmas Bake-Off film in my tower.
And St. Nick help me but I even agreed to be a judge.
Christmas is like the perfect sugar cookie—it slowly melts in your mouth, sweetening every taste bud, making you wish it could last forever.
I love Christmas. I love the cheerful music, the fun sweaters, and the holiday lights. Most of all I love Christmas Cookies.
A begrudging bake-off judge, I refuse to let grouchy billionaire Owen Frost hate Christmas. The man is overworked, his employees are uninspired, and his life is seriously lacking in Yuletide cheer. I want to stuff his stocking with sugary goodness to put him in a very festive mood.
So I dressed up as a sexy elf and gave Owen a taste of something extra special. You should have seen his eyes roll back in his head when he bit into the perfect sugar cookie!
I can’t let Owen Frost be a distraction. Things are insane enough without a sexy billionaire.
My baking subscription service is in the death throes.
My Christmas-ruining step sister is trying to sabotage me in the bake-off.
I’m being stalked by elves on the shelf come to life.
Ok that last one is a little weird, but welcome to my disaster of a life.
I need to win The Great Christmas Bake-Off to pay of my debts and launch my baking career. Sleeping with one of the judges is going to ruin my chance for a merry Christmas. Owen with his washboard abs and big Christmas package is a bad idea. It’s best to keep that all wrapped under the tree.
But when he said in that deep, sexy voice, “Can I have another taste of your Christmas cookies?” Well, let’s just say I’m unwrapping one particular Christmas present early!
Tasting Her Christmas Cookies is a standalone holiday romantic comedy. If you love Christmas desserts, like to laugh out loud at holiday innuendoes, and want Santa to put a tall, good-looking guy under your tree, then pick up this full-length, steamy romance novel! There are no cliffhangers but there is a very happy (Christmas!) ever after!
“We are having a Christmas bath scene in the near future,” I said to the camera, “with holiday bath bombs and themed cocktails. But unfortunately, it won’t be tonight. The bake-off starts tomorrow, baking fans!”
I looked longingly at the bathtub. Then, making sure the phone was definitely not recording, because I did not need to be that kind of Instagrammer, I took a quick shower. I seriously could not get over how huge the bathroom was. I could live in it. With a toaster and a mini fridge, I would totally be good.
After wrapping myself in the robe, I tied a T-shirt around my hair. I had frizzy hair on a good day; keeping my curls manageable was a perpetual struggle. I applied a gingerbread-cookie-scented moisturizer while my videos uploaded. Because I was busy scrolling through my phone and answering comments as I came out of the bathroom, I didn’t notice the half-naked man until he swore.
I looked up and screamed.
“Help! Help! Stalker!” I shrieked and ineffectively pointed at the stranger. Between the rippling muscles, the washboard abs, and an ass I could bounce a quarter on, I hoped he wasn’t actually here to hurt me, because he could do some damage. Pointing and shrieking wasn’t going to stop him. Fortunately, he looked more shocked and horrified than angry and violent.
“Stop screaming!” he bellowed. A freezing breeze blew into the room. It was as if the man had brought the rage of winter into the master suite with him. He looked like it, too, with his ice-blue eyes and silver-white hair. “This is my penthouse. You are not authorized to be here. That makes you the stalker!”
I stopped screaming. It clearly wasn’t helping anything. I also couldn’t help but notice that the bathroom wasn’t the only thing that was huge in the room. With him wearing nothing but boxer briefs, I could tell Santa had brought the handsome man a very large Christmas package indeed. The breeze blew in from the balcony, swirling the strange man’s clean and masculine scent around the room. I forced myself to ignore it.
“Get out of my house,” Big Christmas Package said flatly.
“You get out!” I shrieked. “I’m a bake-off contestant. This isn’t your room!”
“What the—” he grabbed his clothes, tugging on his pants. “The Great Christmas Bake-Off? I cannot have Christmas invading every element of my life. This is ridiculous. Christmas is ridiculous. It’s such a stupid, childish holiday.” He punctuated his words by snatching up articles of clothing.
“Hey now!” I said, hands on my hips, fear subsiding. “Christmas is never ridiculous. It’s the best holiday ever. And if you can’t see that, well then, you’re just a grinch, aren’t you?”
He advanced on me. I was suddenly very aware of how large he was. Christmas package notwithstanding, this dude was tall, broad shouldered, with rippling muscles. He could probably split me in two.
“You’re some stupid little baker who never outgrew the childish fantasy of Christmas,” he sneered.
My nose was inches away from his chest. He glowered down at me. I was too angry to be aware of his half-naked body. Okay, maybe I was like fifteen percent aware. But the majority of my energy was focused on being offended on behalf of Christmas.
“Don’t insult baking,” I said, giving him my best “I want to speak to the manager vibe,” though it was ruined by the fact that I had to crane my neck up to see him and that I was completely naked under the robe. “And never insult Christmas!”
His nostrils flared slightly.
“Men like you constantly belittle the work that women do to keep cultural traditions like Christmas alive,” I continued, poking him in the chest.
“We decorate homes to make them cozy.”
“We cook holiday dinners and bake festive desserts.”
“We host parties that bring families and friends together.”
Before I could poke him again, he grabbed my hand in his much-larger one. Then, realizing what he’d done, he quickly released it.
“I will not stand for your bad attitude!” I declared.
He glared down at me, strong jaw clenched, eyes cold as a frozen lake. “I can’t even believe this,” he finally snarled. He grabbed his briefcase and stormed out, still shirtless.
“Oh my God!” Fiona exclaimed, wide-eyed, as she ran into the room. She hugged me then pushed me to sit on the bed. “Are you okay? Who was that? Why was he in here? Someone call the police!”
“I knew it! You’re trying to steal my boyfriend,” Amber yelled at me, rushing into the room. “That’s Owen Frost, and he’s mine!”
If you like steamy romantic comedies with a creative streak, then I’m your girl!
Architect by day, writer by night, I love matcha green tea, chocolate, and books! So many books…
Sign up for my mailing list to get the free novella, AFTER HIS PEONIES, along with special bonus content, giveaways, and more!
Publication date: November 3rd 2019
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
She’s got one rule: no dating clients. Too bad he doesn’t follow the rules.
When Liv White meets billionaire Tom Marko, she’s about to take over his companies—but he wants her over him…and under him. (And everything in between.) It doesn’t hurt that Tom’s handsome, a basketball star with a body to match, and just the right kind of fierce.
What’s a whip-smart businesswoman to do?
Tom gives Liv an ultimatum: the deal’s off unless they use his Colorado mountain home for their next meeting. Despite her rule, Liv agrees. The truth is, she doesn’t know if she can resist Tom’s presence—or the feel of his hands on her.
Just as the hunger between them becomes impossible to ignore, Tom’s past comes crashing back. The two are thrust into danger, and Tom and Liv must fight to keep their lives—and each other.
THE RULE is the first installment of the All In series. At 95,000 words, this sizzling novel features a love-at-first sight romance and a guaranteed HEA.
Olivia White was fifteen minutes early. It was a trait that got my attention and one that gave me fifteen extra minutes of blue balls.
She walked in and glanced around the conference room before she gazed up toward where I stood. Her blue eyes pierced directly at me, and I took a step back. I didn’t want her to know I was there and forgot for a moment that she couldn’t see me through the blackout glass.
“I need a few minutes to get set up. Will that be all right?” she asked one of my assistants.
Her sweet voice alone made the hairs on my neck stand up.
“Sure. The adapter is right in the table. Do you need anything else?”
She smiled kindly at him. “I think I’m good. Thanks, Paul.”
Paul left the room, and she turned back toward me.
Olivia licked, then slowly bit her perfectly pink, lower lip, and surveyed the room.
My dick pulsed as I wondered what it would be like to feel those plump lips on my own? What would her tongue taste like? Her mouth was a mouth meant to kiss for hours. No doubt, after you got done kissing her, you still wouldn’t want to stop.
I took another step, so I was as close to the glass as possible.
She walked to the front of the room and glanced up toward the blackout glass again. Did she sense I was here?
Her perfect, pert breasts rose and fell as she took a deep breath, walked back to the table, grabbed her bag, and pulled out her laptop. She plugged it into the adapter, so her presentation would pop up on the big screen.
Instead of sitting down, she leaned over and typed quickly on the keyboard. Her body hovered over the table, as her dress inched up the back of her thighs.
My mouth went dry. Her thighs were flawless. They looked silky smooth and volts shot up my spine. I could almost feel them squeezing my neck.
When her presentation popped up on the screen, she stood up straight and began to flatten her dress against her body. A flawless french manicure graced what resembled soft hands, and they glided over her stomach. She ran them over the curve of her waist. Then, almost as if just to tease me, she pushed them behind her and ran them over her butt and thighs.
My cock stood at full attention and visions of what she would look like naked flooded my mind. What would her hands feel like on my skin? Would she grip my hair in desperation to fly?
I eyed all of her. Her body was perfect. It would flawlessly fit against mine.
She sat and swiveled toward me, then crossed her legs. Her forearm pressed on the table, as she leaned comfortably back into the chair, and drummed her fingers on the table. Not nervously—more out of boredom.
I gazed down at her, as my pulse increased. My eyes went to her legs, bare between her short heels and the fitted dress that clung to her curves, and I felt my body become stiffer. As she continued to tap on the table, I thought about how those fingers would feel digging into my back.
She reached up and tucked a rogue strand back into her bun. I wanted to release that messy bun, run my fingers through the cascade of her hair, and tug it so I could feast on her long, luscious neck that was made for lips to brush against. What would she sound and feel like vibrating against my mouth?
My staff walked into the room and snapped me out of my thoughts. She stood up, turned her long and lean frame toward them, shook their hands, and exchanged hellos before she quickly took charge.
I stood mesmerized, as close to the glass as possible and listened to her present while hanging on her every word.
Olivia White didn’t just ooze sexy. No, she screamed intelligence and confidence as she presented out-of-the-box yet practical ideas and asked questions along the way. It dawned on me that she was bold but not cocky. There was no doubt that she knew her craft well, but I sensed that she had no idea how beautiful, smart, or sexy she really was.
That turned me on further.
I had seen her online, read about her in the papers, and watched her clean up her clients’ messes in press conferences. Her self-assurance told me that she was always in control. I wondered how it would feel to have her under me, shaking and losing all inhibition, whimpering and calling my name from those succulent lips, and begging me to send her to a new high.
My blood had raced through my veins from far away. Being this close to her, unleashed an entirely new level of desire.
And I cursed myself. I needed to stop these thoughts. My company required Olivia White’s expertise, and there was no way I would risk putting her in danger. She deserved more than someone with my screwed-up past. I couldn’t and wouldn’t allow myself to indulge in pursuing her.
No, I needed to stay away. Anything with her wouldn’t be superficial, and there was no way I could give myself the gratification. She was exceptional, a rare treasure, and I refused to expose her to my shameful past.
Maggie Cole is the pen name of a multi-faceted woman. She’s an entrepreneur at heart and loves writing contemporary steamy romance novels. Her books will make you feel lots of different emotions. Sometimes you’ll laugh, sometimes you’ll cry, sometimes you’ll have little flutters racing through your veins…and that’s Maggie’s biggest wish for you when you read her novels.
She’s a wife, mother, and lives in the sunshine, where she can often be found staring off into space while creating new scenes in her mind.
(Reed Security, #19)
Publication date: November 20th 2019
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
I met my little pixie in a coffee house and we hit it off right away. That is, until she saw me shoot someone. But in my defense, they were coming to rob the coffee shop. Who does that? Now, I’ll do anything to get her back and make her realize that she’s mine. Kidnapping? I’m not too good for that. Getting shot? Play up the sympathy card. Marry her? You’re damn straight I will. Lay down my life for her? In a heartbeat. I would do anything for this woman and I will make her mine.
It was one non date. We had coffee together. After we bumped into each other. It was more of a meet-cute than anything. It was fun until I realized how very naive I was. I mean, the man said that he had a gun on him and I laughed it off like an idiot. Who actually carries around a gun with them. Apparently, everyone from Reed Security. But I didn’t see that, and now I have a stalker. Not just any stalker though. This man takes everything to the extreme. But I can survive him. I will survive him. And when all is said and done, I’ll go back to my life and the boring men I date. Right?
I ran to catch up to her outside the school she taught at. I had Becky run a background check on her so I could find out where she lived and worked. I figured it would be a little creepy to show up at her house, but work was good. There were other people around and she would feel safe.
I took in every inch of her as she turned toward me. She was short, maybe 5’ 3”, but she was so damn beautiful. She was curvy and had blonde hair in one of those pixie haircuts. It looked damn good on her too.
She turned and her eyes widened. She looked around quickly, so I followed her gaze, thinking she saw something suspicious. “What’s wrong? Is someone after you?”
“No,” she said incredulously. “Why would you assume that?”
“Because you were looking around, like there was danger or something.”
“Yeah, you’re the danger! Why are you here?”
“Because I wanted to talk to you. I feel like we got off on the wrong foot in the coffee shop and you’ve been ignoring my calls-”
“Because I didn’t give you my number.”
“Well, I didn’t get it on our date-”
“We never had a date. Look, it was nice to meet you, but there’s nothing going on between us. We aren’t dating.”
I scratched the back of my neck, not sure why she was denying what I saw clear as day. “Okay, I can see how you would think that there’s nothing between us. I mean, high intensity situations cause stress on new relationships.”
“We’re not in a relationship.”
“But we could be,” I grinned. “See, I think you’re not really giving me a chance here. We had a connection back in that coffee shop.”
“What we had was some banter before I found out that you murder people for a living!”
I shook my head slightly. “See, that’s not entirely accurate. First, I told you that I worked in security, and I even told you that sometimes I took out the bad guys. I never lied about that. And second, I never ever murder anyone. I strategically take out people that should otherwise be dead or imprisoned because they’re really bad people.”
She stared at me dumbfounded and I grinned, thinking I had gotten through to her. “I don’t believe it.”
“You’re starting to come around, am I right?”
“Are you really this…obtuse?”
“Okay, I resent that. I’m not stupid. I’ll admit, there are some times that I can be a little…oblivious and it’s gotten me into trouble, but I know exactly what happened in that coffee shop and you do too. You can’t deny that we had something.”
“Yes, I can. We didn’t have anything in the coffee shop. See? I just denied it.”
“I object your denial,” I said firmly.
“What? You can’t just…ugh!”
“You’re so cute when you get flustered. I could just pick you up and carry you around in my pocket all the time.”
She glared at me and stomped past me to her car.
“So, should I pick you up tonight?”
“No!” She spun around, putting her hands on her hips as she stared me down. “I don’t want to go out tonight. In fact, I don’t want to see you ever again!”
She got into her car and slammed the door. I went over and knocked on her window. “Seven?”
She threw her car in reverse and squealed out of the parking lot. “Hey, this is a twenty mile an hour zone!” I shouted.
I’m a stay at home mom that loves to read. Some of my favorite titles are Pride and Prejudice, Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, and Horatio Hornblower. I started writing when I was trying to come up with suggestions on ways I could help bring in some extra money. I came up with the idea that I could donate plasma because you could earn an extra $500/month. My husband responded with, “No. Find something else. Write a blog. Write a book.” I didn’t think I had anything to share on blog that a thousand other mothers hadn’t already thought of. I decided to take his challenge seriously and sat down to write my first book, Jack. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed writing. From there, the stories continued to flow and I haven’t been able to stop. I hope my readers enjoy my books as much as I enjoy writing them. Between reading, writing, and taking care of three small kids, my days are quite full.
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