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Three Authors Who Have Inspired Me as a Writer by Queenie Black

tourbutton_lovebites

First let me take you back to the beginning of time!

Queenie_Black_17th FebruaryWell almost.

I was a confident reader when I was four and I have never stopped reading since. One notable year (2010) I read 322 books/novellas .

No, I wasn’t doing a challenge and I haven’t managed to break that record since. Now I’m more discriminating and I probably average about 200 books a year.

I spent my teenage years in Greece and as an avid reader I was pretty much starved of reading material.  I could read Greek but it was a laborious process and the books available were mostly classics.  Luckily I had an English aunty out there who received a massive tea chest full of novels from the UK every year. It was a treasure trove of Mills and Boon, and historical novels by authors like Jean Plaidy and Georgette Heyer and I pretty much spent every summer from the age of fourteen reading through the tea chests.

I wasn’t picky. I read everything and I read everywhere.  On the balcony, on the bus, on the beach, it didn’t matter. I always had my nose in a book.

Out of all the authors I read there were many I absolutely adored and still retain affection for but two had a lasting impact on me.

The first is Mary Stewart. Her books contained suspense and classical and literary references that I found fascinating. Mostly though I loved her book because her heroines were quite strong women, often widowed but certainly not shrinking violets.  They weren’t kick ass, and they didn’t argue for the sake of it. They were quietly confident and capable of getting on with things.  I particularly liked her novel Madame Will You Talk which had a wonderful section where the hero chases the heroine across France. I loved that sequence- it made my juvenile romantic heart race.

The suspense, the excellence of her descriptions and her strong heroines intrigued me and I still don’t get tired of reading her stories. Nearly all of her books have a place on my keeper shelf.

My second greatest influence was Georgette Heyer. Her historical romances were detailed and she would transfer me to another place and time. Her heroines were also quite strong.

Bear in mind this was a time when it was quite OK for heroes in romances to put heroines over their knees and wallop them (and we’re not talking BDSM, we’re talking icky paternalistic chauvenism) or even slap their faces, so a strong heroine was not only a welcome change but also inspiring to fourteen year old me.  At the same time, both these authors knew how to write characters who could be vulnerable without wallowing in self-pity. One of my favourite Heyer books is The Devil’s Cub. Great story because the heroine shoots the hero.

I moved on in my tastes and spent a couple of years reading crime, horror and thrillers until I went back to romance, and then came across Erotica and erotic romance.  Here my eyes were opened to romances where sex and the sexual relationship were central to the story which was very graphic and contained explicit language.

Queenie_Black_17th February1I read quite a few of these authors- guzzled them to be honest, working my way through Lora Leigh, Annmarie McKenna and many others. The queen of all of them in my opinion, and the person who inspired me to write erotic romance, is Cherise Sinclair. I came across her books when I picked up Edge of the Enforcer, part of her Dark Haven series in which she explores ménage and BDSM, and I was hooked. It’s the way that she writes and her characters that draw me. Again, her heroines are strong and I particularly like the dynamics between the protagonists and the way she builds the sexual tension and develops the plot and the romance through the sexual relationships.  I love her understanding of the unique sexual preferences of the characters as well.

Overall these three authors have taught me about creating worlds, about strong female characters, and about sexual tension all combining to create believable and human journeys to the essential Happy Ever After.

I hope that one day I will be able to write with their level of skill.

What about you? Who are your favourite authors/ genres and why?

*****

Here is an excerpt from my new collection of short erotic stories Lovebites.

ELEVATOR MAGIC

“You know what? You can take your job and stick it.” Mad as hell I grabbed my purse and stomped out of the little cubicle I called my office. I was done here and I was never coming back and fuck the giving notice part.

The elevator always took ages to creak its way between floors and I could feel the stabbing pressure of what felt like a thousand eyes in my back. Of course they were all watching. They’d been waiting for something like this to happen for twenty months. Just then melodic chimes signaled the arrival of the executive elevator. The one that normal people like me are forbidden to ride in, the one for the exalted rich and the bosses who live in the penthouse. I wanted to escape the avid looks that were directed my way and, what the hell, what could they do anyway? Sack me?

So I stepped into it.

I turned and, just before the doors closed, got a good view of open mouths, staring eyes and was that…envy? It certainly looked like it from where I was standing. As the doors slid silently shut, I raised my hand and gave a little finger wave.

 

The car was bigger than my bedroom, and a thousand times more luxurious but I hardly noticed the mirrored walls and the thick-as-a-mattress carpet. My attention was caught and held by the two guys already in there, one on my left and one on my right.

My gaze darted between the two of them and I felt guilty colour sting my cheeks. I hadn’t expected company but I wasn’t objecting. These guys were fit and built. One dark-haired and smoooooth, the other blonde and just-got-in-out-of-the-wild rough.

And I knew them. Brandon Shaw and Mitchell Graham owned the company I work – ooops, scratch that – the company I used to work for. I’d met them at work events, like the Christmas party and the Halloween party and the Employee of the Year party. I’d seen them a couple of times from a distance. They always had a flock of female employees around them.

I’d heard people described as chick magnets but only realised exactly what it meant when I saw these two. I used to feel their magic pull yet always stayed away because initially I was in a relationship, and then afterwards was suffering from a broken heart and struggling to cope with a job where my ex was screwing a colleague. Pity my ex didn’t take a leaf out of these guys’ books – there was never any suggestion that they had slept with anyone from the company. Which meant in the end that there was a gentle rumor that they were a) gay, or b) didn’t like vanilla and went for the more exotic, with their tastes catered for elsewhere.

I positioned myself with my back to the wall and let my gaze slide over them. To my right was Brandon. He’d taken off his suit jacket and had it hooked over one shoulder. Beneath the fine fabric of his shirt I could see the hard muscle of a broad chest, arrowing down to a pair of narrow hips and a huge bulge… Oh man.

I licked my lips and dragged my reluctant gaze away to focus on his face. He was watching me scope him out. There was a hard predatory glint in his eyes. Heat speared through me from my cheekbones to my pussy, part embarrassment and part desire. I squeezed my thighs together to stop the growing ache.

I quickly glanced away and found myself checking out Mitchell on my left. He was slightly shorter than his partner, and seemed kinder and less predatory too. His eyes were a softer green, more jade than emerald. But his shoulders were as wide and he sported an identical erection. Were they lovers? A pity for womankind if they were gay. What a loss.

I shouldn’t be in the elevator with them in the first place but the new militant me with nothing to lose didn’t care. So instead of fixing my gaze on the floor and fighting the temptation to look again, I enjoyed the view. They put my slimeball ex to shame and my panties grew damp while they silently watched me. I wished that I was wearing something a little less conservative when the elevator jerked to a sudden halt.

Not a nice, slow, we’ve arrived kind of halt but the scary kind.

The lights went out.

Panic dug its claws into me, not letting go even when the emergency lighting kicked in.

“What’s happening?” I didn’t even try and keep the terrified squeak out of my tone.

“Hey,” Brandon said softly, “it’s going to be alright. They’ll have it fixed in no time.”

“It’s broken?” I hated the idea of being shut in closed spaces, and the car, despite its size and luxury, suddenly felt very small. I couldn’t bear to spend hours locked in here hanging over all that empty space. The walls closed in, my hands and feet went cold, and I struggled to breath.

“Now you’ve done it, Brandon.”

“Easy.” When had they got so close to me? I was crowded by two warm male bodies that smelt good. Having them so close, almost touching me, took my mind off the elevator.

“Rub her hands, Mitchell. Get some warmth into them, she’s freezing.”

Mitchell sandwiched my hands between his palms and rubbed hard. The movement distracted me, not because he was making my hands warmer, which he was, but because he kept bumping my breasts.  Awareness rushed through me and my nipples went hard as cherry stones and poked at my blouse. Brandon’s hands rested lightly on my hips but they might as well have been brands. I could feel every finger as if there were no clothing between us. Woodsy cologne, mingled with clean male musk, swirled around me. My pussy creamed and I couldn’t help it; my wayward body leant back until I was pressed hard against Brandon.

His cock, huge and promising, seared my lower back. I couldn’t prevent a small sound escaping. I felt my cheeks go hot. What must they think of me?

Mitchell’s expression was rich with satisfaction in the dim light.

“Shall we carry on distracting you, baby?”

I shivered, my panties drenched as my body answered the question for them.  Brandon nuzzled the sensitive spot beneath my ear. His voice rumbled right through my body as he asked, “Ever been double-fucked before?”

The crude honesty of his question embarrassed me and I couldn’t answer. Then I forgot what he asked because Mitchell dropped to his knees in front of me. His hands stroked slowly up the back of my thighs. They smoothed over stockings, and then paused when they reached my lacy garters.

*****

Love BitesBlurb and buy link:

Elevator Magic
A steamy encounter in a lift makes Cass the center of attention for two sexy men. Is it just hot sex for them or will Cass have to make some life-changing choices?

Immortal Longings
Not one, but two Greek gods in her bed. How’s a girl to choose? Must Zoe’s sensual holiday romance end in farewell, or will she try to make her own heaven on earth with two demigods?

Eleanor’s Choice
Eleanor explores the shadowy world of submission – her marriage depends on it. Will the Master give her an experience she can use to please her husband, or is it time to walk away?

Love Bites
Lonely Ella is mesmerised by the owner of a chocolate shop. Drawn into Lang’s rich, seductive web, she grows to fear as well as desire him. What is the secret he is hiding from her?
These four short stories contain too-hot-to-handle Greek gods, a sexy Vampire who might just turn out to be a killer, a Master who can wield a crop with artistry, and two delicious CEOs who know how to keep a woman happy. Oh, and chocolate, BDSM, MFM Mènage and sex in an elevator.
This collection of 4 stories contains explicit language and graphic erotic sexual content. It is intended for mature audiences 18 years of age or older.
Lovebites is available on Amazon: http://viewbook.at/lovebites

*****

Author bio:

I’ve been writing pretty much since I was able to read. I juggle fundraising for charities, family life and writing with varying success. My children have mostly flown the nest and I live in a small village in North Yorkshire, England with my husband and some chickens. I write in an old caravan in the garden where I can’t be tempted to procrastinate on the internet.

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/queenieblackauthor/?fref=ts

Twitter: @queenieblackwr1

*****

GIVEAWAY!

Make sure to follow the whole tour—the more posts you visit throughout, the more chances you’ll get to enter the giveaway. The tour dates are here: http://www.writermarketing.co.uk/prpromotion/blog-tours/currently-on-tour/queenie-black/

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Shiloh Saddler Discusses Ancient Rome (@ShilohSaddler) #erotica #menage

tourbutton_privatepleasureI’d like to thank K.D Grace for having me on her blog today. I usually write GLBT stories set in the 19th century U.S. Private Pleasure is a little different.

After reading a lot of stories set in Ancient Rome, I decided to finally write my own. Private Pleasure is my first ménage. It is a smoking hot historical romance set in the Roman Republic. In Ancient Rome, sexual pleasure was often indulged. If a man didn’t want to take a wife yet he could shower favors on a concubine. Throughout much of the ancient roman era, it was perfectly acceptable for a powerful, wealthy man to take a wife and share his bed with other women at the same time. A man could hire whores, bed his servants, and legally have a wife without any censure. However, due to Christian influences, it became illegal for a man to have a concubine and a wife at the same time. Although debauchery continued it was frowned upon. I set my book during this time period of the added tension.

Excerpt:

Felix couldn’t believe his soon-to-be-wife had asked him to purchase Naomi. He’d intended to buy the beautiful servant as a present for Livia anyway. It did not matter the element of surprise was ruined. She appreciated the gift just the same.

Maybe even more so, he thought recalling her words. If there is anything I can do to repay you for this favor please let me know. I am in your debt.

Felix paced his large bedchamber, marching like the trained soldier he was.

He was certain most of the men wishing to marry Livia had failed to notice the brief smile she’d shared with Naomi at her birthday celebration. Most slaves had been schooled to keep an impassive expression; still a quick break in decorum was far from unheard of. And it was Livia’s birthday after all. It could have meant nothing. However, after Livia’s request it could also mean a great deal.

He glanced at the empty bed. Normally on a night like this he’d pay a woman to warm his bed or even send for one of his female slaves. Not tonight. His cock begged for attention and all it would receive would be the caress of his own hand. In Livia’s honor he’d sworn off other women so he could savor their wedding night as much as his wife. It would be a hard promise to keep, and although she might never learn of his sacrifice, he intended to keep his word.

Felix stroked his short beard. He had quite a reputation for having a large sexual appetite. With Naomi moving to his domus he did not know if he could keep his hands off her for long. This momentary celibacy did not help with that. He groaned, not wanting to sully his worship of the golden haired Livia.

He left his bedchamber and walked out onto the veranda. The weather was unseasonably warm for May. The lack of a breeze did not help to ease his inner fire. Ever since he was a young boy he’d been ruled by his ambition. His father said if he hadn’t been fortunate to be born into a patrician family he still would have found a way into the elite.

His father was the only person who knew just how high his aspirations went. Many nights he’d lie in bed imagining what it would be like to rule the Roman Empire. The foolish fantasies of a youth, most likely. He sighed and left the veranda to stroll through his garden. He needed to stretch his legs and think. Think and dream like he’d done as a boy. With the rigors of army life and monotony of politics he hadn’t indulged in his fantasies in a while. Likely his father had figured he’d forgotten them, grown up and left them behind.

That was not true. Now, thinking about the possibilities Livia and Naomi represented had him dreaming again. If he was emperor the impropriety of taking a concubine while married would not matter. Past emperors had been known to take many women into their bed besides their wife.

It would be hard to restrain his desires for both women. He did not wish to dishonor his family with scandal. No, he wouldn’t openly court scandal unless it appeared on his doorstep. If it did, then how could he turn it away?

 

Private PleasureBlurb:

A member of the Roman elite, Livia, shares a secret Sapphic relationship with her slave that’s threatened when her father forces her to marry a powerful senator. But after her new husband introduces her to the pleasures of sex with men, she finds her attraction torn. Is it the senator she wants in her bed, or her slave?

Sensuous Naomi has been a devoted slave and lover to Livia for many years, but she too feels a desire for the senator that’s too powerful to stop. When he discovers their secret, he offers Naomi a choice – marry another slave, or live as a threesome. Naomi jumps at the chance to lie in the senator’s arms, even if only for one night.

Felix’s political ambition knows no bounds, nor his appetite for women. But when a critical mission results in his capture, it’s only getting back to his two lovers he desires, no matter what the diplomatic fallout. Little does he know the risks he’s taken in his bed and in the field have not gone unnoticed by the emperor, but will he be rewarded or reprimanded for his actions?

Warning: this is ancient history on the erotic romance side. This novella contains two women lusting after each other and a powerful man determined to have them both.

Private Pleasure is currently on sale for 99 cents

Buy Links:

Amazon Universal | Barnes and Noble | ARe | iTunes | Kobo | Smashwords | Audio

 

Shiloh SaddlerAuthor Bio and Links:

Shiloh Saddler likes to do research for her steamy romances first hand. She has invented a time machine and travels back to the 19th century on a regular basis. There are experimental settings on her time machine which could propel her into the future and even other worlds. She believes love and a good book makes anything possible.

Blog: http://shilohsaddler.blogspot.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/shiloh.saddler?fref=ts
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ShilohSaddler
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7090858.Shiloh_Saddler
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00H6CN5D4

*****

GIVEAWAY!

Make sure to follow the whole tour—the more posts you visit throughout, the more chances you’ll get to enter the giveaway. The tour dates are here: http://www.writermarketing.co.uk/prpromotion/blog-tours/currently-on-tour/shiloh-saddler-2/

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

C.A. Bell Stops by to Discuss BDSM Poetry (@cbellAtrix09) #bdsm #poetry #erotica

tourbutton_bdsm-poetryHi there, and thank you K.D Grace for letting me drop by to promote my new release BDSM poetry. Don’t dismiss me right away because you read the word poetry, I promise this collection is not full of thy heart bleeds and my bosoms heave. I am an erotic fiction author so there will be no bosoms or bleeding hearts, promise.

This collection is made up of many styles of poetry and as it says in the blurb, consists of meaningful, intimate, and downright filthy poetry. BDSM poetry is about exploring the different elements of BDSM, and although they are written as poems and most of them rhyme, they still tell a story and take you on journey. So, give it a go and see what you think, because poetry is a powerful expression of writing and feeling.

BDSM poetry is available at Amazon and on kindle unlimited, so please take a look and leave a review, as your feedback is always welcome and taken on-board.

Excerpt

Mistress

On the floor,

on all fours.

Kiss my shoe,

the heel, too.

Crawl around,

don’t make a sound.

Just do as I say,

or you will pay.

You’re here for me,

to set you free,

control your mind,

help you unwind.

So, do as I wish,

do not resist.

Never question,

my aggression.

Kiss my hand.

Now you may stand.

Don’t look in my eyes,

nor at my thighs.

Don’t speak a word,

for it won’t be heard.

Remember your place,

and my embrace,

you will feel,

to help you heal.

Now hold out your cock,

and I’ll unlock,

unleash your rage,

from its metal cage.

Hold it at the base,

for now, you’ll taste,

the sting of my crop,

across the top…

 

BDSM PoetryBlurb

BDSM is a collection of poetry containing f/f, anal play, femdom, bondage, shibari, anal play and much more. It contains meaningful, intimate, and downright filthy poetry written in acrostic, ballad, cinquain, and free verse.

This collection is intended for the open-minded people out there who love all things BDSM.

So, let BDSM take you on a journey into the taboo, and give the most erogenous part of your body, your brain, a treat.

Bio

C.A.Bell was born and raised on the outskirts of London, England, but for the past three years has resided in a much more rural town of Shropshire, where she and her husband married and made a home. She is currently working on a number of projects, including the follow-on book to The Architect, and aspires to be a well-known author.

Buy Links

Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/BDSM-C-BELL-ebook/dp/B017Y6BZ6A/ref=la_B0140XPC0U_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1449045678&sr=1-3

Amazon US http://www.amazon.com/BDSM-C-BELL-ebook/dp/B017Y6BZ6A/ref=la_B0140XPC0U_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1449045927&sr=1-3

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Social Links

http://authorcabell.co.uk

@cbellAtrix09

https://en-gb.facebook.com/people/Author-C-A-Bell/100010696021804

 

Out Now! – Far from Blind (Club Blind 2) by S.J. Maylee

farfromblind 300x450Contemporary Erotic Romance

Released October 15th!

Book Description:

Candy Wilson has worked hard to build a life for herself from nothing to something she can be proud of but she can’t catch the eye of the one man who drives her wild with desire.

Brad Chambers has everything, always has, except the woman he loves. When a pitch black blind date at the exclusive Club Blind matches the pair together, Candy refuses to believe what she sees and throws up her protective barrier. It’s up to Brad to tear down her walls and get her to see the man who wants only her.

Be Warned: spanking and light BDSM

Where you can find Far from Blind

Amazon | Evernight | All Romance Ebooks | BookStrand

 FFB Teaser - don't make me

The first review is in!

5-stars from Liz’s Reading Life

“This story is another sizzling creation from SJ Maylee.”

 

Far from Blind Excerpt:

He closed the door behind them and the distinct click of a lock tumbling over echoed around the room. Maybe no showing yesterday was a mistake. If they’d had any chance at all, she’d blown it for sure. How could she expect him to trust her now? The air, thick with unsaid words, closed in around her.

It was time to take care of business and escape before she embarrassed herself. “This must be for you.” She held out the envelope.

“Thank you.” He took it from her and tore it open, revealing a piece of paper. His cheeks pulled into a little smile, then it disappeared. He maneuvered around his desk and sat. “Do you like me, Candy?”

“Of course I do.” She clasped her arms around her middle. The bigger question is what he thought of her before Club Blind and now.

“Then why didn’t you show last night?” He pressed his lips together and kept his gaze on her.

“To be honest…”

“That’s all I’ll ever expect from you.”

“I’ll give it to you straight. You don’t want a girl like me.” She blew out a breath as if it could help her raging pulse. Never in a million years would she have guessed she’d want a man to tell her she was wrong.

“Is that what you believe?”

“Yes.” She kept her focus on him. He gave nothing away. His expression didn’t change, only his fingers tapped on his desk which was irritatingly neat.

“Then we have a problem.” He stood. “We’d agreed to meet. I kept up my end.”

“And I didn’t.” She blew out a deep breath.

“Come here.”

She didn’t move. She didn’t take her next breath either.

He pointed to the ground in front of him. “Don’t make me ask twice.”

She jumped and then slipped around his desk. Damn, he really did smell good. No matter whether it was aftershave or him, the deep woodsy scent turned here on. Everything about Brad turned her on.

“Did I ask you to join me at Mistress Charlie’s yesterday?”

“Yes, but—”

“Do you believe I’m a liar?”

“No.”

“I don’t think you are either.” He tapped under her chin, lifting her focus back to him. “But I don’t believe you’re being honest with me right now and that’s a problem.”

“I’m sorry I didn’t show yesterday.”

“I appreciate the admission, but I can’t let the action and the attitude go unpunished.”

“What, are you going to spank me?” She chuckled.

“I think it’s time.” He tucked some of her hair behind her ear and his touch lingered along the side of her neck over her ugly mole. “Don’t you agree?”

“Agreed, Sir.” She leaned back on his desk. It was the only thing holding her up.

“Safeword?”

“Red.”

“Very good. Bend over my desk, please.”

“Right here?” She looked around his office. She didn’t find any windows to the hall, but his windows facing the next building were wide open. “You really are pissed.”

The corner of his lips lifted slightly. “The windows are treated. No one can see in here.”

“Oh.”

“You’re stalling.”

“Can you blame me?”

“You do know I’m an accountant, right?” He tugged on her hair. “We like to add.”

FFB Teaser - you don't want

Praise for the first book in the Club Blind Series

In the Blind

The Romance Reviews “There is a good mix of heat woven into the storyline, perfect for an erotic romance. With the thrill and excitement of the sex club, the author has created the beginning of an interesting series.”

Night Owl Reviews “The beginning of the story leaves you wanting to know more. It has a unique premise. By the end of the first chapter, I was eager to finish the book…the author takes the reader on a wonderful journey”

Cocktails and Books “There was humor, some angst, romance, and of course, I already mentioned the incredible sex. You’ll be quite satisfied by the end.  I know I sure was.”

 

SJ Button 2 180x180S.J. MAYLEE BIO

S.J. Maylee fell in love with storytelling at a young age and with it came a deep-seated desire for everyone to find their happily ever after. She’s finding the happy endings for her characters one steamy story at a time.

When she’s not reading or writing, you can find her caring for her garden, laughing with her two young sons, or dancing to her husband’s music. She’s a PMP (Project Management Professional), Nia instructor, and coffee addict.

As a writer she has a tendency to break hearts, but she always glues them back together.

Blog | Twitter | Facebook Page | Google+ | Pinterest | Goodreads | New Release Newsletter

WHERE YOU CAN FIND BOOKS BY S.J. MAYLEE:

Evernight Publishing | Amazon US   CA   UK| Barnes & Noble | Nook UK

All Romance eBooks | BookStrand | Smashwords | iTunes

releaseblitzbutton_farfromblind

 

Lindsay Cross and Her Men of Mercy Series

LindsayCross_RedemptionRiver_HRTitle: Redemption River, Men of Mercy (book 1)

Author Name: Lindsay Cross

Series Name (or Stand Alone): Men of Mercy book 1

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Release Date: October 21st

Publisher (or Self): Cypress Bend Publishing

Word Count: approx. 74,000

Heat Level: Hot

Blurb:

Hunter James didn’t want or need redemption.

Until one mission turns his world upside down.

He left Mercy to fight for his country and escape a broken heart. Years later, he is hard. Cold. A man without mercy.  Part of an elite Task Force, he tracks a brutal terrorist to his home town. And runs into the woman who betrayed him…

Evangeline Videl was destroyed when Hunter left. Determined to move on, she finds another man, but discovers too late the monster hidden beneath his smooth smile. Struggling to find the conviction to live, Evie finds her life spinning out of control.

Then Hunter returns…

Forced to band together to find the terrorist before its too late, Hunter and Evie must learn to forgive or risk losing the promise of redemption and their lives…

 

 

Excerpt:

“Hey.” His Southern drawl put Matthew McConaughey to shame. Slow. Sexy. And familiar.

Her gaze traveled up the muscled torso to a pair of dark chocolate-brown eyes.

Holy crap.

“Hunter James.” His name breathed past her lips on a whisper.

For the second time that night her heart stuttered and her stomach clenched tight.

Hunter blocked her path, his towering six-foot-four frame packaged in a tight-fitting black T-shirt and jeans that showcased his muscles. His arms had to be twice the size they were the last time he’d been here. His gaze twice as intense. Her reaction twenty times that.

According to the town gossips, he’d been back in Mercy for a couple of weeks, but so far he’d avoided her. And she’d prayed daily he would stay away. Every time he came home on leave, he seemed to make it a point to show up here. At her bar. With another woman on his arm. Making sure she saw he’d moved on. And each time her heart broke a little more.

“Need some help?” he asked.

Her brain took a full minute to kick into gear, then another minute to reconnect to her mouth. “What?”

“You look like you could use some help. Can I do anything?” His serious voice passed through lips that were way too tempting.

She couldn’t think. The man standing before her had gone AWOL with her heart over five years ago, like the tail end of a twister after a storm. Part of her had been happy he’d left. The other part had been devastated. Their love had been wild and crazy, but ultimately destructive.

She noticed the knotted wood cane leaning against the table beside him. “What’s with the cane?”

Hunter grinned and shifted his weight to the side. “What’s with the wet clothes?” He extinguished his cigarette and stepped away from the doorway leading to the upstairs apartment, his limp noticeable.

Evie crossed her arms over her chest, the action squeezing more beer out of her bra. Her lips pressed into a tight line and she forced herself to answer, “Wet T-shirt contest. It’s a new thing we’re trying.”

Evie straightened her arms, clenching and unclenching her fists at her sides in time with the ticking in his jaw. A couple day’s stubble graced the hard planes of his face, only a little shorter than the black hair buzzed close to his scalp. He looked as if he’d been chiseled from steel.

Hunter leaned in close and Evie’s stomach knotted. Lust built inside her, pushing against her dam of resistance. “I bet you won.”

He wasn’t staring at her chest, she had to give him that. No, his target appeared to be her mouth. His head lowered to hers and her mind went blank. If she had been thinking like a full-grown woman, she would have jerked back before his lips made contact. But tonight her brain had pointed and aimed but failed to fire.

 

LindsayCross_ResurrectionRiver_HRTitle: Resurrection River, Men of Mercy (book 2)

Author Name: Lindsay Cross

Series Name (or Stand Alone): Men of Mercy book 2

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Release Date: October 21st

Publisher (or Self): Cypress Bend Publishing

Word Count: approx. 85,000

Heat Level: Hot

 

Blurb:

Ranger James accepted his best friend’s death like a good soldier. With guilt. Regret. Vengeance. But a forbidden desire keeps pulling him from his mission…

Desire for his best friend’s widow.

Killed in Action. That’s why Rachel Carter’s husband wasn’t coming home.

A war widow, alone and broke, Rachel struggles to revive her family’s crop dusting service to survive. Now she takes to the skies to find escape. Escape from the pain. From the guilt. From the earth-shattering desire for her husband’s best friend.

Rachel and Ranger can’t fight the attraction between them any longer. But one fateful night cleaves their new found love in two…

Can they find the will to fight for true love? Or will an evil so shocking destroy their lives for good?

 

Pre-Buy/Buy Links:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/26101086-resurrection-river?from_search=true&search_version=service

Excerpt:

Rachel spun around, the yellow airplane a perfect backdrop to her beautiful face. “What are you doing here?”

Ranger let his gaze travel from her scruffy boots, torn jeans and gloriously figure hugging tank, to the top of her dark red head. Her pink cheeks flushed.

“Like what you see?”

Ranger approached, her green gaze turned wary. Good. She should be worried. She’d doused him in chemicals. His skin still itched. He reached forward, plucked an oil stick from her ponytail and sent her hair spilling to her shoulders. He caught the brief scent of flowers and oil.

Rachel grabbed her hair, lips parted. Angry. Stubborn. Sexy.

He held up the stick right in front of her face. “Oil stick.”

Rachel snatched it from his fingers and tossed it across the room. “I told you to stay away from me.”

Ranger shrugged, his brain still caught on the image of her jean-clad ass hanging out of that airplane. Forget Sports Illustrated. He had farm fucking fantastic right here.

“Don’t you think dropping that all-natural excuse for chemicals on me is a bit dramatic? If you want to get me naked all you had to do is ask.” Ranger gestured to himself, sweeping his hand from his head down to his torso, Rachel’s eyes followed.

That definitely wasn’t desperation or anger in her gaze.

The desire he’d been trying to hold in check for months reared up inside him.

“You think I want to see you naked?” Rachel snorted, lifted her chin. “Besides, I figured anything would be an improvement to your normal smell.” So much for her vulnerability.

The wind picked up, blew into the hangar. Ranger shifted, praying the wind wouldn’t open the fly on his boxers, and almost covered himself. Almost. Until he remembered she was the reason for his stench. Instead, he stood tall. “You’ve never had a problem with the way I smelled before.”

“My manners were just too good to say anything.” She strode past him, punishing him with the sexy sway of her hips.

Dammit, he was so hard up for her, even her walk had his mind blanking. He stood there, nearly naked, and drenched in herbicide, and she walked past him like a stranger on a sidewalk.

Running from him. Again.

“Rachel Ann.” He didn’t yell, but she stopped mid-stride. Turned. Lips parted.

“You did that on purpose,” Ranger said. She’d been hard headed even in high-school, when he tried to break up with her, explaining that he needed a little space to see if life in Mercy was what he really wanted. Jumping on the marriage and kids bandwagon at eighteen years old had scared the shit out of him. But he’d obliterated any chance for reconnecting with Rachel when she’d seen him making out with Tonya at the football game senior year.

He hadn’t thought that leaving her to sow the wild oats of his youth would be a self-fulfilling prophecy of regret. Or that his best friend would move in on Rachel so fast and fill the void that Ranger had left in her heart.

“You bet your ass I did.”

“What the hell for?” He couldn’t get her smell, her taste, her touch out of his head. But she’d dumped shit on him for the last time.

Her eyes narrowed and her lips flattened. “I warned you.”

Yeah, she’d warned him to stay away from her. He’d stayed with her for weeks, helping her after the funeral. She’d healed physically, but remained an emotional tomb.

“I promised Shane, if anything ever happened to him, I’d look out for you.” He wanted to take her in his arms and kiss that angry expression right off her face. He’d wanted her since high-school, but when she’d married Shane, he’d vowed to put those feelings away. Forever. But the attraction hadn’t disappeared. And he knew it never would. “I know the chemistry between us is weird. Scary. But dammit it’s real and it’s here and now. You’re just flying through the clouds because you don’t want to see what’s on the ground right in front of you.”

If he hadn’t been studying every minute expression on her face he would have missed the brief flash of vulnerability in her gaze. Then her anger slid back in place. “The only thing I feel is annoyance. Are you so desperate that you have to chase after what you can’t have? You dumped me first, remember?”

Him? Desperate? No. He’d never had a problem getting women. Until Rachel.

If he hadn’t been so young and stupid he would have been the one she’d married. Not Shane.

Now all he could think, all he could see, was the small sprinkle of freckles across her pert nose. He could be on a mission in a third world country or down the road. It didn’t matter. She affected him.

He had an all-consuming need for his best friend’s wife. He hadn’t counted on lust eating him alive.

But he had honor. He had loyalty. Ranger had vowed over Shane’s grave to take care of Rachel.

 

LindsayCross_RecklessRiver_HRTitle: Reckless River, Men of Mercy (book 3)

Author Name: Lindsay Cross

Series Name (or Stand Alone): Men of Mercy book 3

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Release Date: October 21st

Publisher (or Self): Cypress Bend Publishing

Word Count: approx. 78,000

Heat Level: Hot

 

Blurb:

They say you can’t go home again. Jared Crowe never wanted to.

Home meant facing memories of abuse and neglect. Of dark closets and evil nightmares. Of his own relatives intent on killing him. But now his brother’s kidnapping forces him to face those demons. Only this time, Jared isn’t a scared little boy. He’s a full-grown Special Forces operative bent on revenge.

As a little girl, Sparrow Pickney risked her life to free two abused boys. As a grown woman Sparrow needs to earn a place in her adopted family’s business or be forced into a life of degradation. The chance to prove her family loyalty comes when she catches Jared spying on the compound and captures him.

When Jared sees his captor, he realizes she’s the girl of his dreams and vows to rescue her from a life of poverty. What Jared doesn’t know is Sparrow may not be the savior he remembers…but the one responsible for abducting and torturing his brother.

Jared is determined to find the truth. But that truth may be more than his heart can take.

Pre-Buy/Buy Links:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/26872928-reckless-river-men-of-mercy-book-3

 

Excerpt:

It had been nearly twenty years since he’d seen her, but Jared could never forget those golden eyes. Eyes that had haunted his dreams ever since. Had she joined up with Kay? Or was she simply one of those poor souls struggling to survive?

The thought of Sparrow slowly starving filled him with a sense of guilt. He should have made her leave with them. Even though they’d been children when she’d freed them, Jared had been big enough to drag her out, whether she’d wanted to go or not.

She leaned over him, reaching for his hands. Her floppy hat fell down, blinding her, and she ripped it off and tossed it across the room. Long caramel-colored hair, full of sun-kissed highlights, waterfalled down the sides of her face and tickled his nose. Her scent surrounded him now, flooding his senses. Honeysuckle and wildflowers. His cock swelled in an instant. Jared gnashed his teeth together, trying to quell his intense reaction to her nearness.

Sparrow leaned down further and her loose tank top gaped open, treating him to a glorious view of surprisingly plump breasts cupped in a plain sports bra. His gaze locked onto her beaded nipples through the cotton. Fuck he wanted to rip that bra down and reveal what was hidden beneath. The loose manly clothes she wore made her look stick thin, but womanly curves were concealed beneath them.

Sparrow sighed and sat up straight, leaving rope dangling uselessly on his wrists. Jared gripped the metal headboard with his hands, waiting for her next move. She stood there for a moment and studied him, trying to decide what to do. Well, he wasn’t going to help her out one little bit.

“Keep your hands right there, got it?” Her voice was stern.

“Yes ma’am.” He had no intention of acting up. Yet.

She placed a knee on the mattress, and in one swift movement straddled him, settling on his belly. Jared groaned and closed his eyes thankful she hadn’t sat down lower on his body; otherwise, she would have gotten her own surprise. She leaned over him spreading her knees wider up his chest. His eyes popped open, unable to resist another view of her bare skin.

“You can stop with the theatrics right now, I know I’m not big enough to crush you.”

If only that were his problem. Her shirt dipped down even more and he fixated on the pale mounds of her breasts straining against the material of her sports bra. It was a crime to lock those beauties up in serviceable cotton.

She should wear nothing but pure silk and lace, perfect for him to rip off her body.

Her hair curtained around him again, and her soft lips parted in concentration as she worked. He was aware of every inch of exposed skin—from the graceful hollow of her neck to her supple forearms peeking out from the rolled up sleeves of her checkered work shirt. Even more aware of the intense heat radiating from her core, pressed so intimately to his chest.

“There. All done.” She sat back, a satisfied smile on her lips.

Jared tugged on the rope. He’d completely zoned out on anything other than her straddling him. It didn’t give an inch—the knot she’d tied was worthy of a professional. A small ounce of foreboding seeped into him. “Where did you learn to tie knots?”

“Trapping. Working snares. Been doing it since I was a kid.” Her words were so matter-of-fact, he had no doubt she spoke the truth. Holy shit. He yanked on the ropes, but they didn’t move.

“Impressive.” Jared wriggled his fingers and wrists, testing for any weakness. He found none.

“Might as well stop struggling. Nobody’s ever been able to get out of one of my knots. And I used my new rope too, so it wouldn’t snap easy.” She made a snapping motion with her fingers, the emphasis driving in just how stupid his plan had been. He should have used that easy opening she’d given him with the gun.

His foreboding turned to real worry. He had to get out of here to rescue his brother. Hoyt’s life depended on him. If he couldn’t get free… “Nice, now what?”

“Now you tell me who you are and why you’re here.” Sparrow sat back on her heels, the curve of her ass grazing the tip of his cock. He clenched his muscles, fighting to free himself from the pull of lust.

Remember, you’re the soldier trained in interrogation techniques. Now he just had to stop thinking with his dick for long enough to find out where Hoyt was being held. “My name is Jake.”

She tapped her chin, staring down at him.  Once again he was enthralled by the intense color of her eyes. They were golden, almost like a cat’s, with a darker brown ring around the edges. “Jake. You don’t look like a Jake.”

He enjoyed hearing the name on her lips. Would enjoy hearing his real name even better. Her soft accent and long vowels stretched it out slow. Sensual. “And what do I look like?”

“I don’t know. Killer? Tiger?”

“That’s what people name their cats.”

“True. Why are you here?”
“Why did you take me hostage?” he countered.

“You were spying on my family. Only our enemies do that.” She shifted, brushing against his tip again. Fuck he wanted to rip free of these bonds and throw her down beneath him. Where was his detached logic now? Something about her was making him lose control.

“I have no interest in you. I was looking for a family member who went missing, know anything about that?” He studied her reaction intently, watching for any flash of awareness, but she didn’t give away anything.

“Haven’t seen anybody new around here in a long time, and I would know. Sorry, but you plopped down on the wrong piece of land.”

“He told me he was coming here.” Not really, but Jared knew without the slightest shred of doubt that Hoyt had been taken by the Crowes. Miss Kay wanted to finish what she had started all those years ago, even if Jared didn’t know why. It was bad enough his parents had died when Jared was only nine, Hoyt six, but to have his aunt try to murder them….

Jared yanked on the bonds again, testing the bed frame. It screeched but held firm. Shit.

“What does he look like?” Every time Sparrow moved or shifted he felt her. Desire was holding him hostage as much as the damn ropes. Got to get free. Got to find Hoyt.

“What do I get if I tell you?”

“What do you get? You get to live.” Her brows shot down as if confused.

“You won’t kill me.”

“Try me.”

“How about we make a little trade—you give me something, I give you something.”

“Give? What do you want?” She laid her palms on her thighs, kneeling over his body, the position incredibly erotic.

Blushing aside, maybe she wasn’t so innocent after all. He had a plan and she was part of it. He knew he could get more information out of Sparrow than her giant ass brother. And he’d find it a hell of a lot more enjoyable too. “Kiss me.”

She stopped moving all together and her eyes narrowed in on his mouth.

“Give me a kiss and I’ll sing like a bird.”

 

 

lindsaycrossAuthor Bio: Lindsay Cross is the award-winning author of the Men of Mercy series. She is the fun loving mom of two beautiful daughters and one precocious Great Dane. Lindsay is happily married to the man of her dreams – a soldier and veteran. During one of her husband’s deployments from home, writing became her escape and motivation.

An avid reader since childhood, reading and writing is in her blood. After years of reading, she discovered her true passion – writing. Her alpha military men are damaged, drop-dead gorgeous and determined to win the heart of the woman of their dreams.

 

Author Social Links:

FACEBOOK LINK AUTHOR PROFILE:

https://www.facebook.com/lindsay.cross.author

TWITTER LINK:

https://twitter.com/lindsaycross101

GOODREADS LINK:

https://www.goodreads.com/lindsaycrossauthor

AMAZON LINK:

https://www.amazon.com/author/lindsaycross

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