Stocking stuffers and holiday treats come in all shapes and sizes this time of year, and if you’re anything like me, there are few things you’d rather find in your stocking than that nice new book you’ve been dying to read. Back in the days before eBooks, back before I married Raymond, I lived with my sister in Oregon for several years. We shared a house and, after not growing up together, finally had the chance to become great friends. For those of you who don’t know, my lovely sister is sixteen years older than I am and she married very young, so my early memories of her are memories of her treating me the same way she treated her own children.
During those few years in Oregon, my sister was just coming off of a nasty divorce and learning to play again. Her kids were grown and she was free for the first time in her life. Because we both had good jobs, we were extravagant and creative at Christmas. Her children lived a long way away and I was single, so we decorated the cat climbing post and used that for our Christmas tree. I had a crazy tuxedo cat named Zeke at the time, who was perfectly happy to sit on top of the carpeted platform above the mounds of gifts surrounded by baubles and tinsle. We skied on Christmas Eve, having the slopes of Mount Bachelor nearly to ourselves, then we went home that evening to unwrap the gifts while Zeke batted around the wrapping paper and hid in the boxes.
Actually, few of the gifts were much of a surprise. We both loved books. There were two book stores in Bend Oregon at the time and we never went there without browsing both. So as Christmas drew nearer, we both dropped hints about the books we’d really like to read, and then be both sneeked around and found ways to buy those books and keep it secret.
When all the prezzies were unwrapped, we’d sit among the carnage caressing and admiring our respective stacks of new books, trying to decide which to read first while Zeke once again slept on his perch atop the Christmas Cat Tree. Books have never stopped being a treasure in either of our lives, and I married a man who loves books at least as much as I do. In fact, we sometimes choose a book we both want to read and read it outloud to each other. We did this often in our early days of marriage. Now there’s less time, but we still talk about what we’re reading, and books are still one of the main topics of discussion in our house.
And now those books come to my sister, my husband and me as downloads. Our bookshelves are still full and overflowing and we still love the feel of a real book, but now we collect whole libraries on our kindles. Now we can carry those libraries with us wherever we go. Any book lover who has ever taken a long plane flight knows that the most important part of packing is always deciding which books to take along. Of course that’s still the most important part of packing, but now we don’t have to decide. Now we can take them all!
This holiday season, Body Temperature and Rising is a great way to stuff that eReader stocking with exotic, erotic paranormal fun. I’m very pleased to share the witches of the Elemental Coven as a special holiday treat — 35 pence in the UK and 57 cents in the US on Amazon.
May your pile of books, whether print or eBook, be high and deep this holiday season, and may you frequently find yourselves lost in th pages of a good story! Below is a sizzling excerpt from Body Temperature and Rising to help you get lost.
Body Temperature and Rising Blurb:
American transplant to the Lake District, MARIE WARREN, didn’t know she could unleash demons and enflesh ghosts until a voyeuristic encounter on the fells ends in sex with the charming ghost, ANDERSON, and night visits from a demon. To help her cope with her embarrassing and dangerous new abilities, Anderson brings her to the ELEMENTALS, a coven of witches who practice rare sex magic that temporarily allows needy ghosts access to the pleasures of the flesh.
DEACON, the demon Marie has unleashed, holds an ancient grudge against TARA STONE, coven high priestess, and will stop at nothing to destroy all she holds dear. Marie and her landlord, the reluctant young farmer, TIM MERIWETHER, are at the top of his list. Marie and Tim must learn to wield coven magic and the numinous power of their lust to stop Deacon’s bloody rampage before the coven is torn apart and more innocent people die.
Body Temperature and Rising Excerpt:
Warning: This excerpt is NOT rated PG
Marie woke burning up. She clawed off the duvet and sat bolt upright as the memories came flooding back and terror clenched her stomach into a tight knot. It was only then that she realized she wasn’t at home. She was sitting naked in the middle of a very large four-poster bed, and Anderson was sitting next to her.
‘Everything is alright now, my darling.’ He placed a cool hand on her cheek, then her forehead. You are safe at Elemental Cottage.’ He didn’t wait for her to ask. ‘Tim Meriwether is also safe and resting under the watchful care of Fiori. He asked to return to Lacewing Farm. As is the case with most of my sex, he is very protective of his territory. Tara and Sky have taken Serina Ravenmoor to a safe place.’
Other than the pale moonlight coming in the window, the room was dark. As the events of the night came rushing in on her like a fast moving current, she fought down nausea, then closed her eyes until her insides righted themselves again and she was certain she wouldn’t be sick.
‘I need a shower,’ she forced herself to sound calm. ‘I’m sweaty, and… I feel really dirty.’
‘A cleansing ritual of some fashion after what you have been through, my dear, is not only recommend, it is essential. But are you sure you are recovered enough?’
It was only when she stood by the bathroom door and saw the shower looming in front of her like a gaping mouth that she balked as memories of the last shower she had attempted flooded back to her. Anderson, who was standing next to her with a reassuring hand on her arm, brushed the damp hair away from her ear. ‘I will stay with you if you wish it.’
‘Thank you,’ her voice was breathy and thin, like it too might belong to a ghost. Perhaps she was a ghost. Perhaps Deacon had killed her too and she just hadn’t realized it yet.
With his comforting form fully visible through the clear safety glass of the shower door, she took her time, scrubbed herself hard, and let the tears slide silently down her cheeks as she did so. How was she ever going to survive what she now faced? And even worse, how would Tim survive when it was clear Deacon planned to use them each to the detriment of the other. And worst of all, what she only fully realized as the feel of the water pressure stimulated her skin to a rosy pink hue, the urges and desires that Deacon had kindled in her were still there, and in spite of herself, she couldn’t help wondering what it would have felt like if she had given in, if she had let him pleasure her to release.
She cranked the water to cold and stood in the sluice of it until her teeth were chattering, and still it was as though a million tiny pin pricks were alive just beneath the surface of her skin, as though he were still reminding every single pore in her body how desperately she needed to come.
She was shivering uncontrollably when Anderson opened the shower door and shut off the water, ignoring the splash on his pristine white shirt. ‘It is enough, my love. I cannot allow you to catch your death.’ He bundled her into a huge blue towel and began to dry her goose fleshed skin vigorously. He tisk-tisked. ‘My dear, even when I first take the flesh, I am warmer than you are now. This will never do.’
She tried not to writhe beneath his touch, but the misery of her need was overwhelming. Her lip trembled and in spite of her best effort her eyes misted. ‘I wanted him, Anderson. Dear god, how could I want him?’
He lifted her open palms and placed a kiss on each where her nails had pierced her hands. ‘You have no idea what you have done, do you, my sweet Marie? Of course you wanted him. That is his magic, to make himself the most desired of men, to make his victims feel in their bodies hunger and lust for him like they have never imagined. Even Fiori, who is a powerful witch, not to be trifled with, gave in, my darling. But you did not. You banished him twice and remained free.’
‘Then why do I feel this way if I’m so special? I feel like I’m on fire, I feel like I’ll explode if I don’t…’ She blushed hard. ‘If I don’t get some relief. And that it’s because of him makes me feel disgusted, and still I want.’
‘Shshsh!’ Anderson stopped her words with a light kiss. ‘He is gone, my love. What you feel is now yours to feel, to use, to transform into your strength. My darling Marie,’ he wiped a single tear from her cheek and lifted her chin so that she met his dark gaze. ‘There are many elements, many facets to sex magic. And what Deacon has afflicted you with, he cannot take from you. It is now yours. And what is now yours, you may freely give to me, you may allow me to ease your need, as you did earlier when the situation was much more desperate. In doing so, we may, together, transform it to pleasure and even to something more powerful still.’ He kissed her palms again. ‘If you will permit me.’
‘Permit you? I would beg, Anderson, if it were necessary.’
He brushed his lips across her ear. ‘My love, it would never in a hundred lifetimes be necessary for you to beg love from me.’
She lifted her arms around his neck. ‘Then please, Anderson. I need you now. I need you to help me.’
He took her mouth deeply, tongue plundering, teeth nipping, lips insisting. Then with a sigh that tasted darkly honeyed, he lifted her in his arms and carried her to the bedroom, where the bed had been mysteriously, perhaps magically, made up with fresh linen. There, he pulled back the duvet, kissing and coaxing her down onto the soft mattress.
His body was shades of silver and shadow in the moonlight, teasing her eyes with glimpses of the hard plain of his belly and the tight half domes of his buttocks. As he shrugged out of his clothes, the shape of him still remained vague and mysterious but exquisitely solid, substantial as he moved onto the bed next to her, his anxious cock leading the way. He dropped a wet, suckling kiss on each of her heavy nipples, causing her to arch her back and grind her ass against the clean sheets.
‘I think we must first give you some much-needed relief.’ He brushed a thumb solicitously against her bulging clitoris, and she whimpered and shifted her hips against his touch ‘The seat of your pleasure is ripe with your desire,’ he said ‘And I have such a fondness for ripe fruit.’ Still stroking the swell of her with his thumb, he slipped two fingers between her pouting labia and the catch of his breath mirrored hers as he gently probed and withdrew and probed again until he found her g-spot and she soaked his hand and nearly bucked off the bed.
He released a deep sigh. ‘You are as wet as the fells in heavy dew, and the feel of you makes my own need almost more than I can contain.
‘Please,’ she moaned. ‘Please.’
He lifted her on top of him, and she could feel his thick erection pressing against the inside of her thigh as he carefully positioned her, stroking her pussy lips, then parting them. She felt the press of the head of his penis against her pout, then his hands on her hips guided her downward onto him and she cried out with exquisite pleasure at the feel of him pushing into her grudging hole, then yielding, then pushing again until the fullness of his erection was completely engulfed in her slippery tightness, and suddenly her thoughts were totally and completely on Anderson and what he was doing with his substantial cock. Then he began to thrust, shifting his hips in such a way that with each thrust he raked against the swell of her clit, sending shock waves of pleasure up through her body as she thrust back.
‘I think we shall not linger long this first time,’ he gasped between barely parted lips. ‘Your need is too great, and mine is little less so. Once we have achieve some measure of relief, there will be all the time we need for pleasuring, and I think we shall need a lot.’ She thought he might be right.