Kathleen Rowland Launches One Night in Havana with a Great Giveaway

 

One Night in Havana

#34 in the City Nights Series from Tirgearr Publishing

by Kathleen Rowland

 

Kathleen will be awarding 3 lucky winners a $10 Amazon Gift Certiticate. Winners will be chosen randomly with Rafflecopter. Please use the Rafflecopter below to enter. Remember you may increase your chances of winning by visiting the other tour stops. You may find those locations here.

 

About the Book:

A desperate competition and sizzling attraction leads to dangerous desire.

 

New York Marine biologist Veronica “Roni” Keane is attending the Havana Bay Conference in Cuba. Tomorrow only one grant will be awarded which will provide the winner with professional recognition, resources for a project, and living expenses for two years. She hopes to continue her deceased father’s work, but smooth operator, Carlos Montoya, has won many grants in the past.

 

Carlos, a freelancer for the Havana Port Authority, works to help protect Havana’s reputation as a bastion of safety. As international travelers flock to the island, attracted by its 1950’s time-warp and colonial architecture, the drug business is running rampant, particularly on Roni’s cruise ship. Something’s not right, and when her scuba tanks are tampered with, Carlos brings in the military police to investigate. For her safety, he keeps her close, but he craves her body.

 

Their attraction leads to a fun night with a bit of kink. But Roni finds herself in more trouble than she bargained for when the criminals blame her for alerting the military police and come looking for her. Can Roni trust Carlos to protect her? Will she stay in Havana if Carlos wins the coveted grant, or kiss her lover goodbye?

 

An erotic romance with mystery.

 

Amazon Buy Link

 

 

Excerpt:

 

Chapter One

“Why, Veronica Keane.” A voice heavy with a Spanish accent drawled from behind her. “A dive bar?” A taunting tsk. “What do we have? A slumming New Yorker?”

She stiffened and closed her eyes. She knew that voice and its owner, Dr. Carlos Montoya, a finalist like her, competing for the same damn grant at the biggest Cephalopoda conference of the decade. Her heart pitter-pattered against her ribs. To turn toward him would intimate distress, or worse yet, weakness. She wouldn’t fail to win this grant, not when she was a final contender. “I like this funky little place.” Sia Macario Café, smack in the center of Havana, allowed her to observe locals and their daily lives.

“You need to eat with all the mojitos you’ve downed.” The big tease wasn’t counting. This was her first drink, but his rumbling, sexy timbre hinted at all kinds of dark, hot promises. She’d rubbed shoulders with the Cuban scientist all week. This splendid specimen of Latin male brought on a physical ache that punched low.

A flare-up stirred fear. For her own good, she needed to resist. “I ordered camarones enchiladas.” By now she knew the menu on the chalkboard by heart. She tipped her head back to whiff grilled shrimp soon to arrive in sofrito sauce with fried sweet plantains.

“The flan is good. Just like my abuela makes.”

“I bet. Your grandmother would be happy to hear that,” she said, knowing he brought out the best in most people. Two days ago he’d invited her and a handful of others scuba diving. The chance to ogle him had been one of the perks. He’d worn nothing but swim trunks, his bare chest on display. Every glistening muscle was finely etched. Not a drop of fat on him. Since he’d not given her the time of day, she’d checked him out without him noticing.

The hard-bodied host had led the way toward habitats of soft-bodied creatures. To find where invertebrates lived was never an easy task. Octopuses squeezed into narrow passages of coral for protection and gave females a place to keep their eggs. She’d discovered the remains of a few meals nearby.Octopuses scattered rocks and shells to help them hide.

This grant meant so much to her and no doubt to him as well. Veronica mindlessly toyed with the gold necklace around her neck, but anxiety crackled through her brain. Unlike this man of action, she lacked the flamboyant personality necessary to talk people into things. Carlos had that ability. He’d made friends with judges on board while she’d conversed with an older woman about a box of scones made with Cuban vanilla cream.

That day the wind had picked up to a gale force, and this woman named Bela with Lucille Ball red hair needed help walking to her home. The half mile down the seaside promenade, The Malecón, had provided her with time to practice her Spanish. Turned out Bela was Carlos’s grandmother. She’d worked as a maid when the Castro government came to power. When private homes were nationalized, titles were handed over to the dwelling occupants. Bela owned a crumbling home in the respected Verdado district and rented out rooms.

What Veronica detested about Carlos was his abnormal level of talent for schmoozing. Not that he wasn’t charismatic; he drew her like a powerful magnet with emotions hard to untangle. Why was a self-assured woman who ran her own life thinking about a man who commanded everyone around him?

She inhaled a breath and turned around on the barstool, caught fast by a gut punch of Carlos Montoya in the flesh. She sighed and surrendered to the tendrils of want sliding up between her thighs.

Tall and muscular, his lush dark hair curled to his collar giving him a wild, roguish appearance. His face was lean and chiseled. His mouth full and tempting. His eyes the smoky-gray of a grass fire and fringed with black lashes as dense as paintbrushes. He smiled. A faint hint of mockery curved his mouth, a sensual mouth she imagined to be either inviting or cruel. Or both at the same time when he leaned over a woman with a diamond-hard gleam in his dark eyes while she drowned with pleasure. She fought a fierce desire to run her hand across his broad chest, tip her face upward, and…

His breath tickled her face.

Not going there. She blinked and forced her mind to focus. Carlos Montoya was not the kind of man you lost focus around. But that image of putting her mouth full on his and peeling away his shirt once introduced in her mind was impossible to expunge. Pointless even to try.

He was an intimidating blend of intellect and sexy danger. Both qualities had her leaning back against the bar’s edge. If it weren’t for him, she’d have a chance at winning the grant.

His lips twitched. “You’re staying on one of the cruise ships, am I right?” He rolled up the sleeves of his linen jacket to reveal a dusting of manly hair.

”Yes.” Her cabin served as her hotel room while attending the January meetings with perfect high-seventies temperatures. His eyes locked with hers. She willed herself to move and yet she remained seated, clutching heat between her legs, a wetness so intense that her breath stalled in her chest while her heart hammered faster. Soon she’d return to freezing New York City.

“So, Bonita, give.” He slid onto the bar stool next to her. “What brings you down from a lofty ship to grace us lowly Cubans with your presence?”

Bonita. Pretty lady was not an endearment coming from the mouth curved in a taunting smile, but not a slight either. Not with his deep, melodic voice speaking words as if he knew secrets about her. What secrets did he know? Would he pry into her personal life? She doubted this bad-boy college professor acknowledged boundaries.

“Just drinks and dinner.” She scrambled for composure. “Aren’t we attending a world-class conference? I find the local population to be friendly and kind. That’s not slumming.”

The bartender set down a saoco. “Hope you like it, senorita.”

“Gracias,” she said. “Very nice, served in a coconut.”

“Ah, the saoco,” Carlos said. “Rum, lime juice, sugar, and ice. The saoco,” he repeated, disbelief heavy in his words. “Um. Wow. Once used as a tonic for prisoners of the revolution.”

“Medicinal?” She couldn’t help it. She chuckled and sounded as if a rusty spoon had scraped her throat raw, but it was genuine. The warm glow in its wake was welcome and needed. .

He leaned an elbow on the bar, his beer bottle with the green-and-red Cristal label dangling between his fingers. “Be careful with that one.” He dipped his head toward the front door as if he needed to go somewhere soon.

That fast, the glow snuffed out. She cleared her throat and gripped the fuzzy surface of the coconut container.

He placed a five-peso coin with a brass plug on the counter and whirled it. The spinning motion mirrored a dizzying attraction going on in low parts of her belly.

She cleared her wayward mind and nodded toward artwork on the opposite wall. “I plan to buy a painting tonight.”

“Don’t buy anything unless the seller gives you a certificate. You’ll need one to take art from Cuba. Artists deal in euros in case you don’t have pesos.”

She’d come prepared but said, “Thanks for the info.”

His coal-black eyes widened as he gazed from her head down to the tiny straps around her ankles as if she wore high heels and nothing else. “You give off a Barbie doll image,” he replied and stood up.

“Huh?”

“Where’s Ken, anyway? Kenneth Morton. He came with you to the talks in Antarctica. Five years ago.” He grinned, and the mortification in her belly gave way to a longing which she had no business feeling toward her competitor.

“Ken and I broke up.” She hesitated for a moment. “You have a gift for remembering names. Like a salesman.”

“A person’s name is, to that person, the most important and sweetest sound. Back then I introduced myself to Ken in the men’s room.”

“I remember now. Didn’t you give a talk on a specialized pigment in the octopus?”

“Ahh, si.” He splayed his fingers over his chest. “A pigment in their blood is—”

“—called hemocyanin. Turns their blood blue and helps them survive subfreezing temperatures. Were you awarded something?”

“The antifreeze protein grant? No. It went to a deep-diving photographer. He wasn’t chicken about getting lost or trapped under the ice.”

She slid from her stool and strutted around, jutting her chin in and out like a chicken. “Bock, bock, bock, bock, bock, begowwwwk.”

He chuckled. “Cute chicken dance. Very cute in that skimpy black dress.”

Her cheeks heated, and she clutched her necklace. He’d seen plenty of women in body-fitting attire. In Cuba, women wore dresses to meetings. If she’d harnessed sexier mojo, she’d have livened up presentations. Her presentations with an abundance of dull data went south. She slid back against her stool and clutched her purse to her stomach as if the small satin bag could calm the nerves playing deep down kickball. She belonged in her tidy New York office filled with computers, modems, and research manuals. Not in this softly lit café where passion oozed from a man’s pores, and artists displayed their canvases. Here was where Havana’s trendsetters congregated, and Ernest Hemingway wrote about desire.

“Good luck with your purchases, Veronica Keane.”

Okay, so they weren’t going to pretend they were going head to head for the grant.

As if he had more to say, he grinned at her, his perfect white teeth flashing.. “Do you find us different, like apples and oranges?”

“What am I, an apple or an orange?”

“Hmm. You’re an apple.” He was doing that sexy voice thing which made her brain shut down. Heady.

It started with an unexpected spark, an instant attraction, the jolting jab of oh-I’m-feeling-something. Something like a flashfire in her belly, but now they were talking. “Am I the apple of desire? Want to take a bite out of me?” She pulled in a breath. Had she really said that?

Bonita, do I ever.”

 

“Tomorrow is the final ceremony.” Would she watch him walk to the podium to accept the grant?

 

About the Author:

Book Buyers Best finalist Kathleen Rowland is devoted to giving her readers fast-paced, high-stakes suspense with an erotic love story sure to melt their hearts. Her latest release is One Night in Havana, #34 in the City Nights series.

 

Kathleen also has a steamy romantic suspense series with Tirgearr Publishing, Deadly Alliance is followed by Unholy Alliance. Keep an icy drink handy while reading these sizzling stories.

 

Kathleen used to write computer programs but now writes novels.   She grew up in Iowa where she caught lightning bugs, ran barefoot, and raced her sailboat on Lake Okoboji. Now she wears flip-flops and sails with her husband, Gerry, on Newport Harbor but wishes there were lightning bugs in California.

 

Kathleen exists happily with her witty CPA husband, Gerry, in their 70’s poolside retreat in Southern California where she adores time spent with visiting grandchildren, dogs, one bunny, and noisy neighbors. While proud of their five children who’ve flown the coop, she appreciates the luxury of time to write.

 

If you’d enjoy news, sign up for Kathleen’s newsletter at http://www.kathleenrowland.com/

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a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

 

 

New Release: Dancing with Myself: Stories of Self-Love Erotica

 

 

Edited by Jillian Boyd

Nine sizzling, sexy stories of self-love and self-discovery, edited by (and with a story from) Jillian Boyd, featuring Dena Hankins, T.C. Mill, Jordan Monroe, Leandra Vane, LN Bey, Jones, Hollis Queens and Rachel Woe.

 

In this sensually spellbinding collection, nine authors explore just a couple of the ways one can get themselves off – stories that don’t just hone in on the how, but explore the why, and the “oh… oh my” Dancing with Myself delves into the heads and between the sheets of a long-distance submissive and her dominant, a cam girl reminiscing, an artist entranced with her unusual subjects and many more.

 

Dancing with Myself Buy Links Here: 

books2read.com/dancing

 

 

Table of contents

Obey – Dena Hankins

The pose didn’t strain her body. It just made her feel so damn vulnerable. Maddie wished she’d thought this through more. The pictures she’d studied hadn’t given her a clue how the poses would make her feel.

 

The Solution – TC Mill

I wondered if Dom had ever worried about me, all the nights I’d been out late. Maybe he’d been glad to have his space, just as I was glad to have mine on those evenings he claimed to have meetings or buddies waiting for him at some bar. Once I figured out where he’d really been going, I claimed more than space. I took pleasure, I took control. That was what it felt like at the time, at least.

 

Investigation – Jordan Monroe

As Tara answered him, she sat still with her hands in her lap. She was struck by the intimacy of this interview. They were perfect strangers, and yet he was asking her questions that would not be asked on a date. It was rather revealing, and she was surprised that she found herself enjoying the process.

 

5A – Jillian Boyd

It took me a moment to adjust to the sudden flash of brightness in the lobby, the motion lights having switched themselves on after I opened the main doorway to my block of flats. But after I’d blinked my eyes back to normal, I became very, very aware of the little pink sticky note stuck to my mailbox. Pink note, red ink, message that left me with a red-hot, full body blush in a matter of seconds.

 

Half the Story – Leandra Vane

He held himself firm and it felt like returning home. The weight of his world vanished and he could just be himself. Desire was Nick’s biggest secret and he always kept it on lock down.

Nick started pumping himself into his fist with sure, steady strokes. He imagined Lauren was on top of him, straddling him on the chair, her jeans tight over her thighs and her pussy kept from him by a thin but unfortunate layer of denim. That didn’t stop her from grinding into him and shoving her tits in his face. They bounced to the rhythm Nick was stroking himself, faster and faster. He looked down the front of her shirt, his imagination straining to catch a glimpse of the darkened areolas around her pebbled nipples. But the tiny tank top held everything in despite Nick’s most desperate yearnings.

 

Girl B – LN Bey

All week she woke up picturing herself as the new girl, kneeling beside Angie, naked and awaiting Trey’s orders as he towered above them. Lying in bed on her back, her fingers would grasp her own hips as she lay there; begin to edge inward.

No.

She ran, farther and faster each day, and did nothing in the shower but scrub the grime and sweat from her skin.

 

Fawna – Jones

In the dreams, there are so many more flowers. Hundreds of them all over her. Their green touch creeping up her body and wrapping around her legs, holding her down so that the flowers can explore her more deeply, rub themselves against her sex and past her lips, petals folding neatly over her clit. Orchids, like small mirrors held up to her open vulva, embrace her. Clots of frothing white snapdragon blossoms press against her like a thousand little mouths over her ass and hips, and breasts. Tight white knots of lilies slid against her cunt, almost penetrating, leaving their dust on her thighs and lips.

And now here they are, alive, in her hands, under her fingers.

 

Reconnection – Hollis Queens

Laura Linx’s email is waiting for her when she’s finished with the dicks. They had met on a community chat board when Laura had first gotten into the business. Bleu had taken the new member under her wing and taught her how to deal with rude customers, how to check token statistics to see who was worth spending energy on and even how to set up her camming business as an LLC. In a way, Bleu still does social work. Only instead of making a crap salary, she’s pulling over five times what the state job had offered her after she graduated. She tries to share this information with as many women as she can, but not all of them listen. Some are only in it for the quick cash. Some can’t take the grueling schedule, lack of days off and the consistent rudeness which wears cam girls down over time. The online community of cammers acts as a safe haven, protection again the dangers and loneliness that come with participating in such exposed yet reclusive work.

 

Unconventional Methods – Rachel Woe

Figs. Oysters. Chili peppers. Of all the alleged aphrodisiacs, nothing makes me want to slide my hand between my thighs more than good old-fashioned anticipation.

 

I check the clock again. 10:55 pm, the equivalent of 3:55 am London-time. Daniel’s time. He likes to joke that he’s Merry Olde England, and I’m new—as in New England. American. Peanut butter and Twinkies to his Marmite and spotted dick.

 

Being a food blogger has a way of seeping into other corners of my life. To be fair, I am hungry. Ravenous, in fact. But not for cakes or condiments. My body reacts to the ping of the chat notification like a dog to a dinner bell. My mouth literally waters. I listen for the glide of my mother’s legs across the sheets in the next room, the restless flipping of covers. The prolonged silence tells me she’s fallen into the stupor offered by her sleeping pills. I plant myself in front of my laptop, wireless earbuds firmly in place.

 

There’s only one word in the chat box: Ready?

 

Arousal blooms low in my belly, soft petals unfurling. I type, Yes, Sir, and hit enter.

 

About Jillian Boyd

Jillian Boyd is a writer and anthology editor, based in London. She has previously edited anthologies about the Roaring Twenties, spies and oral sex, which are just some of her many interests in life.

 

 

 

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/37854540-dancing-with-myself

 

The Lady with the Hair & the Sunglasses. What the Hell does She Want from Me?

As you know by now, encounters with Magda Gardener, though never invited and quite often disturbing, have been a part of my life for the past five years now. I work for her. Whether I like to admit it or not, I’m as much a part of her collection as Alonso Darlington and Jack Graves. The role I play, however, is not nearly so dangerous, but it’s every bit as demanding. The thing is with Magda Gardener, I never know when she’s going to show up and check in on me. But whenever she does, she always leaves me a little wrong-footed and with a story to tell.

 

With the release of Buried Pleasures, the third Medusa’s Consortium novel, and the first set in Vegas, I’m reminded again of an encounter I had with her awhile ago while on holiday in the Lake District with my husband.

 

 

Somehow I suspect that the situation isn’t normal. I suspect that I’m either dreaming or having some sort of weird out of body experience, but for the life of me, I don’t know how, or when I decided to take this brief holiday from the flesh, or even if that’s what it really is.

 

But I go on about my business like everything is normal, nothing out of the ordinary. And in truth, I’ve often gone to the Twa Dogs Pub in Keswick and ordered a pint. But this time I’ve come alone, which is something I’ve never done before, and I know when I see her sitting at a table in the back of the snooker room that she’s waiting for me. It’s late afternoon, an overcast day, typical Lakeland weather, and yet she’s still wearing sunglasses. But then she was wearing sunglasses that night in Vegas, even in the tunnels.

 

I sit down across from her and she looks me up and down. Though I can’t see her eyes, I can certainly feel her gaze, like she’s looking right through me, like I’m sitting there naked. I resist the urge to fold my arms across my chest, and she gives a little smirk as though she knows exactly what’s going on in my mind.

 

My throat’s desert-dry, and I take a good solid sip of my Sneck Lifter and wonder at the wisdom of alcohol on an empty stomach. ‘What do you want from me?’ I ask.

 

I can see a golden eyebrow raise above the edge of the glasses. ‘I should have thought that would be obvious. You’re a writer, aren’t you?’

 

‘So? I reply.

 

 

But before I can say anything else, I catch a flash of bright eyes over the edge of the glasses and feel as though I’m suddenly glued to the chair unable to move. ‘You’re a storyteller, that’s what you do. You get into peoples’ heads and tell their secrets.’

 

‘It’s fiction. I make it up,’ I manage. My throat is no longer just dry, but it feels as though it’s constricting, closing, strangling me as I speak.

 

‘I’m sure that’s what you tell yourself,’ she says. My pulse ratchets up in panic, and I feel like my body is closing in on me, turning into a solid prison from which there is no escape. And just when I think I’ll hyperventilate, she offers me a quirk of a smile, and lowers her eyes to her own drink – whiskey, I observe. ‘Where do you think those stories come from?’ she asks.

 

‘I make them up, they come from my imagination, like they do with all writers.’

 

This time she throws back her head and laughs out loud, and I’m stunned by the bell-like sound of it. I’m even more stunned that no one notices. The pub’s not crowded, but it’s not empty either. How could anyone not notice her sitting there. She’s exquisite in a scary sort of way, and yet no one seems to be aware that we’re even there. I remind myself that it’s still quite likely I’m only dreaming.

 

Then she leans across the table and takes my hand in hers, and as frightened as I was only a moment ago, I suddenly find myself wanting to kiss her. Another indication that none of this is real, I tell myself.

 

‘Who do you think gives you those stories, Ms. Grace?’ Her breath is sweet against my face, like an open field with just a hint of the single malt whiskey she’s been sipping. ‘Oh, I have so many stories I want you to tell, and you’re perfect for the job, darling, because you are so open to going where I want you to go.’ And then she stands, leans over the table and kisses me.

 

For a split second I have sense enough to worry about what the rest of the people in the pub will think of the girl-girl lip-lock in which I find myself. A split second more and I realize no one even notices. ‘You,’ she whispers against my mouth, ‘have been writing stories for me for a long time.’ She pulls away just enough to look at me over the top of her glasses, and I suddenly feel as though my very heart is freezing solid in my chest. ‘‘I figure it’s time you know what I expect of you. Things are about to get complicated Ms. Grace, and you are about to become a very, very busy woman.’

 

 

 

 

She kisses me again, and I feel like the floor to the pub has just caved in beneath me. Behind my closed eyes, I see familiar flashes of a ritual in a mirrored room, couples having sex all around me, candles on an altar, a mirror that contains a monster, a ghost who has been hung for a murder she didn’t commit, a succubus devouring thought and ego and giving it back in exchange for the blood of a vampire. Death walking in Vegas, enthralled by a siren, whose voice can calm or kill. I see, in strobe-like flashes of light, an exquisite woman in a ruined garden walking among statues, statues that look so lifelike and so disturbing in their poses that I feel goose flesh climb my spine. That same woman walking the endless halls of a library filled from ceiling to floor with books bound in the flesh of the stories they contain, shelf after shelf of books, stories I’ve written, written at this woman’s command. And as she touches each of those books in turn, I realize the stories I’ve written give her power over the people in those pages, and she, in turn, gives me power to write the next story, and the next and the next.

 

Then suddenly I’m back in the Twa Dogs with her voice a soft vibration low in my chest. ‘You work for me, K D. You always have. You just didn’t know it,’ she whispers against my ear. Then she inspects me with another brief glance over the top of her dark glasses and brushes my icy cheek with her warm palm. ‘I thought it was time you knew the truth. That knowledge could serve you well in the near future.’

 

And when she removes her hand, when I can no longer glimpse the bright glint of her eyes behind her glasses, I fall with a jerk back into my chair, like I’ve had one of those falling dreams. I open my eyes to find my husband staring at me across the table. ‘You alright?’ He asks.

 

I nod, for a moment unable to place where I am.

 

‘You want another pint of Sneck Lifter?’ He nods at my empty glass. ‘You sucked that one back in nothing flat.’

 

A crack of a cue against a ball on the snooker table and a half-laughed curse in a soft Cumbrian lilt and the world comes back into focus. I am indeed in the Twa Dogs, and my husband and I have come to the Lake District on a holiday. As he heads to the bar for another pint, I rub my eyes and breathe deeply while the world around me comes back into focus.

 

‘I think you dozed off there for a minute, Sweetie,’ he says when he settles back across from me, raising his pint in salute. ‘Were you dreaming?’

 

I nod and gulp back a hefty drink from my pint. ‘Must have been.’

 

‘You look a little pale. Her again?’ he asks.

 

I only nod my response, my eyes locked on the half empty shot glass sitting on the table next to ours, rimmed in icy pink lipstick. ‘She says I work for her.’

 

‘Yeah? Did she give her name,’ he asks.

 

‘No.’ It surprises me to find how relieved I am that she didn’t, and yet, as I sip my beer and stare over at the whiskey glass, I’m sure I already know her name. I’ve known it for a long time. I just never expected to meet her in person. And I certainly never expected to work for her.

 

 

 

 

Don’t Forget In The Flesh, book 1 of Medusa’s Consortium

is on sale through January for 99c/p

 

January Sales and Kindle Unlimited

January is such a dreary month here in the UK, but one good thing about it is the January sales. Are you surprised? You know me well enough by now to know what a hermit and a curmudgeon I am. I’d rather have my eyebrows shaved and my kneecaps sanded rather than go shopping in a crowd. It’s all wasted on me. Well … almost all of it. I am in absolute heaven when January sales come around and those sales happen to involve books. Oh the ecstasy! And what better to spend a dreary January day than curled up with a hot cup of your fave and a good book.

 

Yup, January sales can result in escapism at its finest. If I can’t be in the warm sunshine somewhere, at least I can read about someone else who is. And even if the characters in my book of choice are not in the warm sunshine, I can still partake of their adventures vicariously from the safety of a comfy recliner. I’m convinced books are the last truly great escape. Whether I’m writing one or reading one, what happens between me and a book is an intimate thing, and it’s different for every person who reads that book. Books are the original interactive experience, just the book, the reader and her imagination. Absolute heaven. So here’s some news to brighten your January.

 

In The Flesh is only 99 p/c through the end of January

 

 

 

 

Of course I have ulterior motives. I want to seduce all of you Medusa’s Consortium virgins and get you hooked on the series. Book three, Buried Pleasures, is just now out and takes the tale of Magda Gardener and her Consortium on to Vegas. So of course I want to get you there.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In The Flesh is now available on Kindle Unlimited

 

 

 

What’s that I hear? You don’t want to pay 99 p/c when you can get books from the Kindle Unlimited library to read for FREE? Well you’re in luck then, because In The Flesh is now available on Kindle Unlimited for your reading pleasure.

 

 

 

 

In The Flesh: Book one in the Medusa’s Consortium series 

 

(Click Here for Book Two | Book Three)

 

Blurb:

 

When Susan Innes comes to visit her friend, Annie Rivers, in Chapel House, the deconsecrated church that Annie is renovating into a home, she discovers her outgoing friend changed, reclusive, secretive, and completely enthralled by a mysterious lover, whose presence is always felt, but never seen, a lover whom she claims is god. As her holiday turns into a nightmare, Susan must come to grips with the fact that her friend’s lover is neither imaginary nor is he human, and even worse, he’s turned his wandering eye on Susan, and he won’t be denied his prize. If Susan is to fight an inhuman stalker intent on having her as his own, she’ll need a little inhuman help.

 

 

 

 

So cheer up this January! Read and be happy. And to tease and titillate you just a little bit, here is an all-new excerpt from In The Flesh. Enjoy.

 

 

In The Flesh Excerpt – Orgy of Death & the Capture of a Demon:

 

And we did. We slept, or at least I thought I slept. I thought I dreamed. I thought surely it must be Talia’s doing. I drifted for a long time, aware of the foreign presence inside me, aware that it was only Magda’s talisman that kept just enough of me safe and focused. Without it I would be easily taken over by that presence.

 

It was the champagne bubble effervescence coursing over my entire body that roused me from deep sleep to the place almost of waking, but not quite. The feel of a feather touch raised the fine hairs on my forearms, up my spine, on the back of my neck, goose fleshing the tops of my breasts and tightening my nipples to points.

 

“I’m here now, my darling girl. Don’t be afraid. It will hurt but a little, and then you will feel nothing but pleasure.”

 

I felt myself being lifted, cradled like a child in strong, hard arms. Then I inhaled the cold wild scent of the high fells and below it earth, solid and warmed by moss and fallen leaves, and I could have wept with relief, even as fear shot along all my nerve endings.

 

“Scribe, why is the vampire here with us?” The Guardian’s voice was more curious than upset.

 

“We’re dreaming,” I mumbled. “A dream brought on by our self-pleasure, no doubt.”

 

“How so?”

 

“Perhaps you don’t crave the flesh of a vampire, but I assure you, we mortals do.”

 

“Why?”

 

“Because vampires have what we don’t—eternal life.”

 

“But they are dead,” He said.

 

“We mortals don’t see them that way. To us they’re powerful, beautiful, because they symbolize lust and virility, and we fantasize about being taken by them.”

 

There was a soft chuckle next to my ear and cool fingers against my bare nape, pushing my hair aside. “I did not know,” the Guardian said. “It seems very real.”

 

“Powerful dreams always do. Sometimes when we’re in them, it’s very difficult to tell if they’re real or not.”

 

 

“Then how do you know that this dream is not real?”

 

“A vampire would have no more use for you than you do for him,” I replied. “And it was he who sent me here, remember?”

 

“Of course.” The Guardian didn’t question my logic further, for which I was grateful.

 

“We shall begin now, my darling girl,” came the voice next to my ear. “You have only to let me take you, and when I am finished, when I have emptied you completely and hold your life force within me, then I shall give it back to you, only changed.”

 

“Is this not the vampire from High View, scribe—the one who grovels before Magda Gardener?”

 

I felt a vibration against my neck that might have been a growl, might have been a purr. “It is, yes.”

 

“And you find him attractive?”

 

“It’s a dream,” I said. “Go back to sleep.”

 

“Careful, my darling girl, you’ll hurt my feelings.”

 

“I suppose he’s comely enough,” The Guardian observed. “A pity his flesh is not living. I might enjoy inhabiting such a fine, strong body.”

 

“Good heavens, He is irritating, isn’t He?” Alonso’s voice was soft against my ear and with a start, I realized the Guardian couldn’t hear what Alonso said to me.

 

“He’s dreaming, Susan. You, however, are not. You must tell me now if you do not wish me to continue, for once I have tasted you, especially in your lust and your vulnerability, there will be no turning back, and I do not wish for you to despise me for what I have done.”

 

With an effort that seemed colossal, I slid my arm around his neck, amazed at how soft and dark his hair was. As I pulled him to me, he stayed my efforts, but only for a moment. He kissed my cheek then held my gaze, only for a second longer, and his eyes were darker than midnight. Then he lowered his mouth to my nape, to the vein pulsing like a driving drum beat. His lips were deliciously warm, and it came as a surprise when he ran the flat of his tongue along the length of the vein, pressing, lapping like a cat tasting milk, then pressing again with the tip as though he were probing for just the right spot.

 

The intake of his breath was like the sigh of a summer breeze. He kissed me once, on the spot where my pulse beat the strongest, and then again.

 

My hand in his hair tightened to a fist. I caught my breath and held it, waiting in his embrace. It was a sharp pain, precise and doubled—just two pinpoints of pain, like a surgeon’s twin incision against the side of my throat. I had barely time to notice it before blinding pain took my breath away. The world flashed white hot around me and I panicked and began to struggle, but he held me tightly.

 

As the skin gave beneath his bite, as I felt my blood flooding to his lips, I heard his voice inside my head. “That is the worst of it done, my darling girl. Now you need only relax and let me take you.”

 

 

“Ouch!” came the other voice in my head, reminding me I wasn’t alone with Alonso and surprising me how badly I suddenly wanted to be. “That was not pleasant. Susan, are dreams usually so physical?”

 

“Talia, can you not silence him?” Alonso spoke inside my head again and, for the first time, I noticed the succubus sat at my feet, gently stroking my ankle.

 

She said nothing, but the Guardian gave a soft moan of contentment, or rather I did, but I knew it was His. And for the first time since He had deceived His way into my life, I was relieved that He was silent, that He couldn’t touch me, even though I felt the fullness of Him pressing gently against the inside of my chest. I needed Him to sleep and to leave me alone for a little while longer. It was with that thought I realized I was clinging to Alonso’s strong, well muscled frame and I wanted him like I had never wanted before. Christ! I wanted him to devour me, to take me completely into himself. I had never imagined it would be like this. Somehow I’d thought it would be more macabre, more solemn.

 

I would have writhed if I could have. I would have pulled him closer, but I was lost, drowning in the swift flowing river of my blood that he drew into his mouth in deep, thirsty gulps. That I couldn’t move, that my body was completely held in thrall to the flow of my own blood into his mouth mattered less than the fact that he fed from me, an act so powerful, so incredibly intimate, that I felt shy, awkward.

 

“It is all right that you feel this way, my darling Susan, for so we all feel at our making.” He spoke as though he’d read my thoughts, though in truth what I experienced was far too primal to actually be thoughts. “There is no act more intimate, no connection deeper than the taking and giving of blood. What I take now is meant to give me life, to give me your life, but only so I may give you back my own. In this act, we shall both find pleasure, and you will be more than my familiar. You will be the child of my own heart’s blood.”

 

There was a sudden thrashing behind my breastbone. Though I knew it wasn’t physical, it was no less real.

 

“Susan, you have deceived me. I shall punish you very severely for this duplicity. Do you really think a dead creature can keep me from what is mine?”

 

The Guardian’s voice was not raised, but in it was an edge of disquiet I’d not heard before. “For your impertinence, vampire, I shall take your succubus and use her long and hard, even if she does reek of your death.”

 

“You can try.” The voice that responded was different, and in my groggy, giddy state, a blurred apparition of Magda Gardener pushed aside the makeshift curtain that separated the mattress from the rest of the area. Even with her glasses still in place, her hair seemed to writhe and dance around her face, as though it lived and breathed anger and fury. “I won’t hesitate to turn the scribe and the vampire if that’s what it takes, and well you know this.”

 

I felt as though my whole body jerked and struggled around the still point at which Alonso’s mouth pressed against my vein, but in truth I had not physically moved. I was incapable of movement, completely enthralled by the ebb and flow of my blood and the kiss and bite of the vampire at my throat.

 

“That won’t be necessary, Magda,” Talia said, still caressing my ankle and my calf. “We’ve got this.”

 

“You shall all suffer for this deception!” The words came from Talia’s throat, but the Guardian spoke them from inside my body.

 

“Oh, I doubt it,” the succubus managed in the next breath, her grip secure on my leg.

 

 

Stanalei Fletcher’s January Blowout Sale Blog Tour & Giveaway

 

 

All 5 Northstar Security Series books are on sale for only

$.99 during the tour only!

 

GiveAway: Stanalei is offering some fabulous prizes during this tour. One Lucky winner will have the chance to choose an ebook from her backlist, another lucky winner will receive a $50 Amazon Gift Certificate, and one lucky winner will have the chance to choose a print book from Stanalei’s backlist. Please use the Rafflecopter below to enter. Remember to follow along with the tour to increase your chances of winning. You may find the other tour locations here.

 

Northstar Security Series Blurb:

Northstar Security Firm is an elite private security agency whose mission statement: GUIDED BY THE TRUTH, is the guiding principle to provide justice for those who have been wronged. Founded by former CIA agents Byron O’Neal, Katherine O’Neal, and Sean Malone, Northstar Security has a ninety-nine percent success rate. That one percent is a still open case involving Katherine’s murder and Sean Malone’s career-ending gunshot wound. Nothing is a hundred percent guaranteed, and angst over one unsolved case doesn’t stop good men and women from fulfilling their duty.

 

 

 

 


Proving Ground

Northstar Security Series Book #1

A screw-up, a wild fire, and a bio-terrorist. What could go wrong?

Proving Ground introduces the high stakes world of The Northstar Security Firm. Caitlin Malone’s only hope of saving her town, maybe even the entire country, is pinned on the one man who broke her heart.

Screw-ups don’t get second chances. That’s what Caitlin Malone believes when she returns to Oregon after failing her first Northstar Security assignment. When she inadvertently stumbles across a plot to steal deadly pathogens from the bio-lab near her hometown, she sees a chance at redemption.

USDA Forest Ranger, John ‘Mac’ MacAlistair, doesn’t want to babysit the motorcycle club holding their annual rally in his national forest. To make matters worse, Caitlin is attending the rally with Mac’s estranged uncle. Having her home again brings up feelings that are better left buried.

It’s early September. Any spark will send the dry timber into a raging fire. The terrorists are counting on that distraction to work in their favor. When Caitlin is trapped by the wildfire, her only hope of rescue is pinned on Mac, the man she’s tried two years to forget. Before they can share their feelings, Mac and Caitlin must first escape the burning forest and stop the terrorists from releasing the deadly pathogens.

 

Buy Links:

Amazon | The Wild Rose Press

 

Excerpt:

…he couldn’t reach the knife. Although handy in most situations, it would be useless against a gun. His only chance of coming out unscathed in this encounter would be quick reflexes and luck. Mostly luck.

Breathing slowly, he cleared his mind, took a cautious step forward—and froze when he heard the click of the gun’s safety release.

The time it took to consider alternatives should’ve been spent backing out the door. However, in his nearly thirty years, he’d only run away from one situation, which, although dangerous to his emotional well-being, hadn’t been life threatening. He wasn’t backing down now.

The gun didn’t waver. The person behind it remained shadowed, but steady hands indicated someone other than a fly-by-night burglar. Had one of Sean’s old nemeses come after him for some long overdue retribution?

“I don’t know who you are.” Mac kept his voice calm, soothing. “But I’m pretty sure I’m not the person you want to shoot.”

The snick of a switch and a blaze of overhead light prevented more talk. Blinded by the sudden brightness, Mac stood rooted to the floor, hands in the air, not daring to make any sudden moves.

“Damn it, Mac, I could’ve killed you!”

Caitlin Malone.

Mac’s heart stirred to life. Blood surged through his veins as his breath released on a whoosh. He lowered his hands, but his body refused to budge. His reaction had nothing to do with the fact Caitlin had greeted him with a shotgun, and everything to do with the woman herself.

 

 

 

 

Dead Reckoning

Northstar Security Series Book #2

Byron O’Neal, Northstar Security Firm’s director didn’t always run an elite private investigation firm. His early CIA years were spent chasing Soviet spies. Now his past is catching up, and Kellee, Bryon’s daughter is caught in the middle of a game of Russian Roulette. Northstar agent and former Navy SEAL, Egan Maddox, is tasked to save Kellee from the Russian mafia before it’s too late, a task that puts not only his life, but his heart on the line.

 

Buy Links:

Amazon | The Wild Rose Press

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beyond Duty

Northstar Security Series Book #3

When Northstar Security Firm investigates the blackmail of a U.S. Senator, agents Riley O’Neal and Mary “Chip” Anderson don the unwelcome cover of newlyweds to find two kidnapped women and stop the blackmail – and posing as newlyweds to avert a national security crisis is a lot harder than it seems.

 

Buy Links:

Amazon | The Wild Rose Press

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Breaking the Honor Code

Northstar Security Series Book #4

Cyber-terrorism brings even the most powerful companies to their knees. When Northstar Security Firm discovers a breach inside their computer firewall, agent Sloan Cartland will do anything to help the firm’s brilliant computer tech, Allison Richards, find the culprit—even after he learns that all evidence of the hack points back to Allison.

 

Buy Links:

Amazon | The Wild Rose Press

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tell It Like It Is

Northstar Security Series Book #5

FBI agent, Nelson Kane’s Aunt Rosalee has a story to tell. Someone wants her stopped. When Northstar Security’s unconventional bodyguard, Justine Shelby, is assigned as Aunt Rosalee’s protection, Shelby learns she’s as welcome as a wiretap at the annual J. Edgar Hoover Christmas party. Ornaments start to fly when Shelby informs by-the-book, Agent Kane to stay out of the way while she helps his aunt complete her tell-all memoirs.

Buy Links:

Amazon | The Wild Rose Press

 

 

 

 

 

 

About Stanalei:

Stanalei’s love of writing romance stems from reading favorites such as Grimm’s Fairy Tales, Barbara Cartland, and
Alistair MacLean. She has over twenty years of training in the martial arts and holds the rank of Sandan, a third-degree black belt, in Aikido.

 

After a taste of life on both U.S. coasts, she now resides near the beautiful Wasatch Mountain Range with her hero, who just happens to be her best friend and husband. Together they enjoy backcountry dirt trails on a RZR, visiting our National Parks, or exploring museums and ghost towns. You may visit Stanalei at:

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Blog | Goodreads | Newsletter | Amazon | Pinterest| Google | LinkedIn | Instagram

 

 

 

Don’t miss out on Stanalei’s giveaway!

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

 
© 2018 K D Grace
The Romance Reviews

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