Category Archives: Excerpts & Release Day Reveal

COVER & EXCERPT REVEAL + GIVEAWAY: THE BEARD MADE ME DO IT (The Dixie Wardens Rejects MC #5) by Lani Lynn Vale

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THE BEARD MADE ME DO IT

Series: The Dixie Wardens Rejects MC #5

Author: Lani Lynn Vale

Genre: MC Romance

Release Date: June 28, 2017

Cover Model: Jacob Wilson

Photographer: Furious Fotog

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Synopsis

 

He’s only a friend.

Those words had haunted him from the moment Jessie James had heard them muttered from the one girl, above all others, that he thought had his back.

Sixteen years later, he still feels those words like a brand on his soul.

Lucky for him he has a son to take care of, a full-time job that demands every single second of the day, and not a single moment to spare for the likes of a woman that won’t stand up for him when he needs her the most.

He’s only a friend.

The words had slipped out of Ellen’s mouth, and before she could recall them or better yet, explain, Jesse is gone from her life for good, taking her heart with him.

She tries to find her way out of the pit of despair, but not one single person, no matter how much she tries, can fill the void that he left in his wake.

Time heals all wounds. Or at least that is how the saying goes.

It’s a crock of crap, though.

Sixteen years pass when Jessie and Ellen see each other again without the influence of the town and bad memories surrounding them, and it’s as if not a single day has passed.

Ellen knows the instant that her eyes see her old love that she’s still just as much in love with him today as she was all those years ago.

The problem is that Jesse wants nothing to do with her. Or at least that’s what he keeps telling himself.

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Excerpt

“Why the hell are you out here and not in your fucking room doing that?”  I asked my sixteen-year-old son, Linc.

Linc looked up from his homework, and shrugged.

The problem with Linc doing his homework out here meant that he had the TV blaring, his phone on some stupid Vine video, and his pencil tapping a million miles an hour while he hummed to some random song that only he could hear.

He was also nearly naked.  Had been for the majority of his life.

He ignored me as if I hadn’t said a word.

“Seriously,” I said to him. “What makes you think it’s okay to sit here in your underwear with the fuckin’ front window wide ass open?  There are people in this neighborhood that I’d rather not egg our shit. Not to mention you don’t pay the fuckin’ electric bill and it’s cold as fuck out.”

Linc snorted.

“They’d have to be able to walk close to our cars, and since most of them are old geezers, I don’t see that happening.” He countered. “What’s got up your ass?”

I grunted, walking to the kitchen to grab a beer.  It’d been a long fucking day, and I had to go back to work and do it all over again tomorrow.

I was a welder for a pipeline, and my job was exhaustingly hard work that I fucking loved.  I made a whack, and payed for my bills, but to do that I had to work long hours.  Nearly eighty hours a week.

“Someone called for you today. A woman.”

“What was her name?”  I asked, scanning the contents of the refrigerator for something to eat. “Did you eat all the leftover pizza?”

Linc and I had pizza a lot.  Anything that was fast, and came out of a box, was our go-to menu item seeing as neither one of us really knew how to cook. Lunchables. Macaroni. Hamburger Helper when we were feeling adventurous.

“Ellen?”  Linc guessed.  “I wrote it down on the pad next to the phone.

The name ‘Ellen’ wasn’t common, but it was still impossible for a girl from my past—almost fourteen years ago to be exact—to come back and haunt me some two thousand odd miles away from where I first met her.

“What did she want?”  I asked. “And you never answered me on the pizza.”

“That was gone last night about three in the morning.”  Linc chuckled unrepentantly.  “And I wrote it all down on the note.”

I closed the fridge and moved across the small space to the counter next to the landline that I wasn’t sure why we still had, and stared at the pad of paper with two words on it.

Club party.

“Can I go?”

I looked up to find Linc, the boy that was spitting image of me.

Six feet one, and likely to grow even more since the pediatrician said he’d likely reach my height if not more.  Jet black hair with a slight wave to it, exactly like mine.

Hell, he even had a beard, exactly like me.  Though, his was much more trimmed and kempt due to the school he was attending informing him if it wasn’t done just so, he’d have to shave it or leave the school.

We’d had to fight for the beard, so if he wanted to keep it, he’d damn well follow their rules or I’d make him shave it off myself.

His body mass was the only thing he didn’t have yet that resembled me. He was much skinnier, and definitely on the verge of getting some bulk, just like I had been at seventeen. But he didn’t have it yet. He was still in that in between stage that showed the promise of what he might one day be.

Me, I was six foot four, two hundred and fifty pounds of solid muscle, and had a six pack that was derived from days and days of hard work and sweat on the pipeline. I had a beard that was on the verge of being too bushy, but I’d literally lost all desire to impress anyone a long fucking time ago.

I was me.  I wasn’t going to change, even though some would like me to.

“I’ll have to ask if it’s kid friendly…” I laughed when my son gave me a face that clearly said what he thought about me saying ‘kid friendly.’

My kid wasn’t a kid. He couldn’t be when he was raised by me.

I’d done my best, but I’d been more like a brother than a parent. We were seventeen years apart in age, and there wasn’t a day that went by that I did the whole parenting thing correctly.

He had to grow up faster than most. By the age of ten, I was leaving him at home for extended periods of time because I’d been switched to a different shift that equaled me not getting home from work until a little after nine o’clock.

By the age of twelve, he was spending almost the entire night alone every other day because my shifts were switched again.

By fifteen, we didn’t even pass each other for the entire day at times.

Now, at sixteen, I had a better paying position. One that equaled me working days, though they were long and just as tiring—if not more tiring—as my previous job.  Being peoples’ boss was the pits.  Dealing with peoples’ bullshit was even worse.

“You took me to the last one.”

I grinned.  “That’s right. I did.”

“I can’t believe you’re prospecting. I’m so fuckin’ excited.”

I just shook my head.

My kid rolled his eyes at me and got up, walking toward me with a paper in his hand.  “Read this and make sure it looks good.”

I grabbed the paper and read it, my heart tightening slightly when I read the words on the paper.

“You think I’m a superhero?” I asked quietly, my eyes flicking up to my son’s where he was leaning against the wall.

Linc looked at me, really looked at me, and nodded.

“Yeah, dad. I think you’re a fucking superhero.” He grated out. “Otherwise I wouldn’t be here right now, now would I? My paper was on someone who inspires me to be a better person. That’s you, bitch.”

I grabbed my man-child into a headlock and brought him in close to me, then pressed a kiss to the top of his head before taking him down to the ground and tickling him like I used to do when he was six.

“Get out of here, kid. Let me read. You get your shit picked up outside or it’ll get stolen.”

My kid left, luckily putting pants on before he walked outside to pick up his football gear, leaving me to read a paper that was enough to bring a grown man to tears.

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In the Series

BEARD MODE (The Dixie Wardens Rejects MC #1)
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FEAR THE BEARD (The Dixie Wardens Rejects MC #2)
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Coming Soon

SON OF A BEARD (The Dixie Wardens Rejects MC #3)
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I’M ONLY HERE FOR THE BEARD (The Dixie Wardens Rejects MC #4)
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About the Author

I’m a married mother of three. My kids are all under 5, so I can assure you that they are a handful. I’ve been with my paramedic husband now for ten years, and we’ve produced three offspring that are nothing like us. I live in the greatest state in the world, Texas.

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EXCERPT REVEAL: EASY MAGIC (The Boudreaux #5) by Kristen Proby

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EASY MAGIC

Series: The Boudreaux #5

Author: Kristen Proby

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: April 4, 2017

Cover Designer: Hansen of Okay Creations 

Photography: Sarah Eirew

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From New York Times bestselling author Kristen Proby, comes the next sexy and captivating standalone title in the Boudreaux Series, EASY MAGIC. Take a trip to the Big Easy and fall in love with Beau and Mallory’s passionate story on April 4, 2017 in this upcoming contemporary romance. Check out the excerpt below and preorder your copy today!

 

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Synopsis

The Boudreaux Series. Sexy. Intriguing. Easy.

Family. Responsibility. Stability.  

As the co-CEO of Bayou Enterprises, and the eldest of the Boudreaux clan, Beau is the epitome of these. Now that his baby sister Gabby is happily settled down, Beau has moved into the company loft in the heart of the French Quarter to be closer to his office while his own home is built. He doesn’t have time for anything but the family he adores and the company that drives him.

If only the bewitching owner of the herb shop downstairs from Beau’s loft wasn’t so damn tempting. 

Mallory Adams is living the life. The good life. The best life for her. After years of hiding who she is, and the gifts she’s been cursed with, Mallory opened her little shop in the French Quarter, offering herbs and lotions for anything from soothing a sunburn to chasing those pesky ghosts New Orleans is known for out of a client’s home. Some call her eccentric, and some say she’s simply odd, and that’s okay with her. She is a bit odd, but in her experience, all of the best people are. 

When an old pipe bursts in the loft above her store, flooding her storeroom, Mallory comes face to face with Beau Boudreaux, and she doesn’t need the clairvoyant abilities that have been passed down through generations to know that she’ll never be the same. Beau is her exact opposite; serious, straitlaced. He wears suits for Pete’s sake and probably wouldn’t know the difference between arnica and flaxseed if his life depended on it. But when he touches her, the electricity is through the roof and she’s smart enough to know that a chemistry like theirs doesn’t happen every day.

Can two people so very different possibly find their way to happily ever after?

 

Excerpt

I turn to look at him and he’s leaning against the door jamb, watching me with lust written all over his face.

I don’t have to be psychic to see it.

He wants me.

He slowly pushes away from the door and moves toward me, his shoulders broad in the white button down shirt, his arms hard where the shirt is rolled to his elbows. His jaw tightens as he gets closer, towering over me because he’s so damn tall, but I’m not afraid of him in the least.

He doesn’t say a word as he lifts his hand to cup my cheek, his thumb brushing under my eye. I wrap my hand around his wrist and lean into his touch, soaking up his warmth. God, I’ve missed being touched.

Being touch by Beau is like being touched for the first time in my life, and I never want him to stop.

He lowers his lips to mine, brushes them lightly, nibbles the corner, and then sinks in for the kiss of my life. He gently urges my mouth open, and licks my lips, and devours me. His hand dives into my hair, and the wall is suddenly at my back as he continues to explore me in ways I didn’t even know existed.

He braces his free hand on the wall above my head, and I fist my hands in his shirt at his sides, holding on for dear life.

Finally, he pulls back, breathing hard, his eyes bright and dilated.

And in the moment, I know. His touch is safe. I can trust it. Him. I’m not bombarded with someone else’s emotions, and I am free to simply feel my own while being intimate with him.

“So that’s what all the hoopla’s about.”

He smirks, and I realize I spoke aloud again, but I’m not embarrassed. Not in the least.

He takes a deep breath and drags his knuckles down my cheek.

“I want to keep you here all night,” he murmurs before kissing my forehead. “So I’d better take you home.”

I smile. He could talk me into staying. But he’s not. And I’ll be damned if that doesn’t make me like him even more.

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And don’t forget to grab the first books in The Boudreaux Series!

EASY LOVE (The Boudreaux #1)

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EASY CHARM (The Boudreaux #2)

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EASY MELODY (The Boudreaux #3)

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EASY FOR KEEPS (The Boudreaux #3.5)

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EASY KISSES (The Boudreaux #4)

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About the Author

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New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Kristen Proby is the author of the bestselling With Me In Seattle and Love Under the Big Sky series. She has a passion for a good love story and strong, humorous characters with a strong sense of loyalty and family. Her men are the alpha type; fiercely protective and a bit bossy, and her ladies are fun, strong, and not afraid to stand up for themselves.

Kristen lives in Montana, where she enjoys coffee, chocolate and sunshine. And naps.

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EXCERPT REVEAL: THE DEEP END (Honey #1) by Kristen Ashley

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THE DEEP END

Series: Honey #1

Author: Kristen Ashley

Genre: BDSM Romance

Release Date: March 7, 2017

 

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✮✮✮ A delicious world of erotica, BDSM with alpha-subs and their Dommes, and a gripping love story…Welcome to The Bee’s Honey! The first book in New York Times bestselling author Kristen Ashley’s Honey Series, THE DEEP END is a seductive and rich love story releasing March 7, 2017! And check out the amazing trailer created by Book Candy Studios below! ✮✮✮

 

Fall into THE DEEP END and preorder your copy today!

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Synopsis

About THE DEEP END (Erotic Romance Releasing March 7, 2017):

Enter a decadent sensual world where gorgeous alpha males are committed to fulfilling a woman’s every desire…

Olivier isn’t sure what he’s gotten himself into when he joins the Honey Club, only that a dark part of him hungers for the lifestyle offered by this exclusive club. Here, no boundary will be left untested…and one’s deepest fantasies will become an exquisite reality.

When Amélie invites Olivier to surrender, she gives the alpha submissive what he craves. Soon they both find themselves falling harder than they ever anticipated—but as their connection deepens, the truth about Olivier’s past could destroy everything…

Gripping and seductive, The Deep End is the first book in a sensational new series from bestselling author Kristen Ashley.

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Excerpt

She turned back to him. “You seem to have a good deal of stamina.”

“Amelie…Mistress, I don’t think you’re getting’ that I seriously find you not hard on the eyes.”

She bent closer, as intended for this part of their session, some of her fair falling on his chest in another caress. She did this letting her amusement show, if not all of the emotion she felt at his compliment.

“I wonder, monchou, if you think you can butter me up with compliments.”

“I don’t know. Maybe. Though not sure why I’d bother since I didn’t give you one and you just made me shoot a huge-ass load the like that have never come from my cock.”

“And he gives another compliment,” she said through a smile.

“You earn it, I’ll say it, he replied, his lips twitching. “That is, if I’m physically capable of speech.”

She was still smiling when she reached out a hand and delicately traced circles around his nipple.

His eyes darkened.

Her good humor increased.

“You’re of course aware I should do something about you being so audaciously cheeky.”

Another darkness crossed his face. “What?”

“I shouldn’t allow you to be cheeky with me.”

“Cheeky?”

“Impudent,” she explained.

The look fled. “You mean, in uppity, hot-chick speak, a wise-ass.”

Amelie couldn’t help it, she laughed softly.

“She’s got a pretty laugh, too, to go with that pretty accent,” he murmured and she saw his eyes on her lips.

I could get lost in this one, she thought. Lost and never found.

 
 

About the Author

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Kristen Ashley was born in Gary, Indiana, USA and nearly killed her mother and herself making it into the world, seeing as she had the umbilical cord wrapped around her neck (already attempting to accessorize and she hadn’t taken her first breath!). Her mother said they took Kristen away, put her Mom back in her room, her mother looked out the window, and Gary was on fire (Dr. King had been assassinated four days before). Kristen’s Mom remembered thinking it was the end of the world. Quite the dramatic beginning.

Nothing’s changed.

Kristen grew up in Brownsburg, Indiana and has lived in Denver, Colorado and the West Country of England. Thus, she’s blessed to have friends and family around the globe. Her family was (is) loopy (to say the least) but loopy is good when you want to write. They all lived together on a very small farm in a small farm town in the heartland. She grew up with Glenn Miller, The Everly Brothers, REO Speedwagon and Whitesnake (and the wardrobes that matched).

Needless to say, growing up in a house full of music, clothes and love was a good way to grow up.

And as she keeps growing, it keeps getting better.

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EXCERPT REVEAL: JADED HEARTS (Loaded Replay #1) by Harper Sloan

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JADED HEARTS

Series: Loaded Replay #1

Author: Harper Sloan

Genre: Contemporary Romance

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Synopsis

Signing with Brighthouse Records was supposed to be everything we ever wanted—our better life. Our chance at everything we never had but always wanted. All our dreams would finally come true and we were on top of the world. It was our chance at the happiness we never had in life.

Our every desire was at our fingertips and the power of that feeling was all consuming. But then it took every dream we thought would come true and it slapped us in the face with the cold hard reality.

Dreams were just that…something that floated on the cusp of untouchable, taunting you with every graze of your fingertips before slipping even further away.

Happiness…that feeling is a joke.

In the end it became painfully obvious that each of us would always have each other, but we would forever be alone.

Excerpt

Prologue

Signing with the record company of our dreams should have been the best thing that ever happened to us.

And it was…for a short while anyway.

While the glitz and glamour of the fame’s promise was shining as bright as our stage lights we could forget where we came from and live in the glory.  The money bought us every happiness we ever craved.  Those false securities that you think will make your life better.  The instant friends, lovers—you name it—would do whatever we asked just to spend a second in our presence.

We had it all.

The only problem was when we had those quiet moments in between the insanity.  When we were slapped in the face with the reality that all we really had—all we could count on—was each other.

My brother, Weston, is the only constant I’ve ever had in my life.  He’s the person that I know will never let me down and will always be my biggest support.  We grew up with parents that hated us.  Really…it sounds ridiculous, the notion that parents could hate their children, but ours did … no, do.  They made no secret of it when we were younger.  And they continue to attempt to pick at our very souls like the vultures that they are.

My earliest memory of them is somewhere around third or fourth grade.  That was the year that they seemed hell-bent on reminding us that we had ruined it all for them.  Constant screams and verbal lashings.

According to them, they were on the edge of fame and then we came along and it all went down hill.  Even now, I still can’t understand how they came up with that logic.  How we were to blame for their reckless behavior.  The same reckless behavior that, in reality had ruined whatever path they might have traveled.  It has nothing to do with us, but to them, we were essentially their bad luck.

When we hit middle school it got worse, but only because they knew that they could leave us for long periods and we wouldn’t die.

Our parents, like us, were born to be stars…or at least they assumed they were and they had no qualms about reminding us that fact daily.  Unfortunately for them, they lacked the drive and ambition to never back down until they had everything they ever wanted.  The first challenge that was thrown in their path they decided to take the low road full of scavengers and sinners.

Like I said, vultures through and through.

Our dad knocked up mom in the early eighties, when big hair rock bands were all the rage and theirs was seconds away from signing the record deal that would make their careers.

Then they found out about us.

The twins that ruined it all.

And all those long nights performing in whatever local hole they could find, bouncing from town to town just waiting for their big break was washed away.

Mom was no longer the singer that men would lust over.  Not when we ruined her body.  And our dad was so deep in the bottle I’m not sure he realized he was swimming in it.  Again, something that was blamed on us.

When their band fell apart, they decided hating us was almost easier than hating each other.  They had a common goal in their blame and right or wrong, to them we would never be anything other than a reminder of why they aren’t living their dream.

Their band mates obviously didn’t share the same bond that Weston and I have with Jamison and Luke.  God forbid I ever found myself in a position like my parents had been in, I know my boys would band together and the show would go on.

Because for us, this is it.

This is our future’s promise of a better life and even if for me it’s starting to look like more of a curse than a promise, it’s something that we would die before we gave up.

Unfortunately for me, I’m pretty sure that there are a few people that would love to make that happen.

I’m getting ahead of myself.  You’re probably wondering who am I.

I’m no stranger to you.  I’m on every magazine cover.  You open social media and I guarentee you there is a spondered post about my group.  Turn on the radio, boom – there we are.

I’m everywhere.

I’m Wrenlee Davenport, lead singer of Loaded Replay, and I’ve learned the hard way that there is plenty of people in the world that would love to have a piece of me, but they don’t give one shit about the person behind the voice.

They see the persona.  The fake me that the record label loves to market as the sexy singer with the body of a sinner and the voice of a saint, but for me—I’m probably always going to be that stupid little girl that believes that my prince charming will come riding in on his black horse—because really, black horses are so much more badass than white ones—and prove to me that every little jaded piece of my heart is worth loving.

And he will love me for me.

For Wren.

Not the Wrenlee that, for more times than I care to admit, has to drink herself stupid just to face this fucking life I’m living.

Yeah… fame and fortune is far from everything I ever dreamed it was.

It’s my own personal hell and I pray that there’s something or someone out there that can prove to me that the world isn’t screwed because the majority of humanity is too busy licking the windows on the outside to see the beauty behind it.  All they care about is what’s at face value when what matters is skin deep.

I should feel bad for prince charming.  My knight in tarnished armor.  Because he’ll have one giant battle on his hands to make me believe that there might be someone left out there that doesn’t just want a piece of me.

 
 
 

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About the Author

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Harper is a NEW YORK TIMES, WALL STREET JOURNAL and USA TODAY bestselling author residing in Georgia with her husband and three daughters. She has a borderline unhealthy obsession with books, hibachi, tattoos and Game of Thrones. When she isn’t writing you can almost always find her with a book in hand.

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EXCERPT REVEAL: SWEET CHEEKS by K. Bromberg

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SWEET CHEEKS

Series: Standalone

Author: K. Bromberg

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: November 14th, 2016

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An all new second chance love story by the New York Times Bestselling author of the Driven series.

Sweet Cheeks by K. Bromberg is LIVE on November 14th!

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Synopsis

An all new second chance love story by the New York Times Bestselling author of the beloved Driven series.

It all started with the invitation. To my ex-fiance’s new wedding.

I should have ignored it. Thrown it away. Set it afire. But I didn’t. I replied.

With a plus one.

And then my assistant accidentally mailed it.

Enter Hayes Whitley. Mega-movie star. The man who has captured the hearts of millions. But I gave him mine years ago. He was my first love. He was my everything. Right until he up and left to chase his dreams without so much as a simple goodbye.

When he showed up out of the blue ten years later, I should have known to steer clear of him. I should have rejected his offer to take me to my ex’s wedding. I should have never let him kiss me.

But I didn’t.

And now we’re left wondering if the pieces of the life we once shared still fit together somehow. First loves are hard to forget. The question is, do we want to forget? Or do we risk the chance and see what happens next?

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Excerpt

He chuckles and all of a sudden my back straightens. “That’s their schedule, Ships. Ours is a secret.” He abruptly stands and grabs my hand to pull me up. My body jolts at the connection that sitting side by side with him all this time has had buzzing just beneath the surface. As if knowing he was close enough to touch but not really touching was an awareness all in itself. I know he can feel it too. That I’m not alone. Because the words on his lips falter momentarily before he recovers. And a part of me wants to stay like this a bit longer but know it’s just that missed connection we lost so long ago that’s causing the sensations to simmer to the surface. Nostalgia. Muscle memory of the heart. “C’mon. Let’s go.”

Go?

“Yes. Go. It’ll be easier if you think of this whole trip as an adventure rather than their wedding.”

“And what? You’re my tour guide?”

“If that’s what you want to call me. I prefer cruise director though, considering we’re kind of stuck with the nautical theme, Ships.” He winks and holds his hand out.

“Oh, please.” I roll my eyes.

“Or captain.”

“You’re certifiable, you know that?” I shake my head and he pulls on my hand to help me stand.

“Quite possibly, but all that matters is I’m in charge of this schedule, and we need to get a move on it. Your adventure awaits.”

“And, oh captain, my captain, that adventure is what?” I drag my feet like a child, curious what he’s talking about but smiling nonetheless.

“Do you actually think I’m going to tell you?” He dazzles me with that smile I can’t resist. “Didn’t you know? Spontaneity is the best kind of adventure.”

Oh. Shit.

 
 
 

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About the Author

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New York Times Bestselling author K. Bromberg writes contemporary novels that contain a mixture of sweet, emotional, a whole lot of sexy and a little bit of real. She likes to write strong heroines and damaged heroes who we love to hate and hate to love.

She’s a mixture of most of her female characters: sassy, intelligent, stubborn, reserved, outgoing, driven, emotional, strong, and wears her heart on her sleeve. All of which she displays daily with her husband and three children where they live in Southern California.

On a whim, K. Bromberg decided to try her hand at this writing thing. Since then she has written The Driven Series (Driven, Fueled, Crashed, Raced, Aced), the standalone Driven Novels (Slow Burn, Sweet Ache, Hard Beat, and Down Shift (Releasing 10/4/16)), and a short story titled UnRaveled. She is currently finishing up Sweet Cheeks a standalone novel out at the end of 2016.

Her plans for 2017 include a sports romance duet (The Player (#1) and The Catch (#2)) and the Everyday Heroes series (Cuffed (#1), Combust (#2), and Cockpit (#3). She’s also writing a novella for the 1,001 Dark Night series that will be out in February 2017.
She loves to hear from her readers so make sure you check her out on social media.

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EXCERPT REVEAL: FILTHY RICH (Blackstone Dynasty #1) by Raine Miller

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FILTHY RICH

Series: Blackstone Dynasty #1

Author: Raine Miller

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: November 15th, 2016

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Are you ready for Caleb Blackstone?

Filthy Rich by Raine Miller releases on November 15th! #BlackstoneDynasty

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Buy Links

(PRE-ORDER)

Amazon US │Amazon UK  Paperback

 

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Synopsis

Billionaire Caleb Blackstone lives in the glamorous world of wealth and success, with every material luxury. But the moment he sees Brooke Casterley, none of that matters. Caleb is filled with a raw, undeniable need that he can’t ignore…for a girl who is so completely different from everything and everyone he’s ever known.

Only Brooke isn’t looking for love. She knows all too well just how much damage the wrong guy can do. Still, what sane, broke British girl can resist the charms of an incredibly sexy, chivalrous billionaire? What starts as flirtation quickly turns into all-consuming passion. Nothing could have prepared her for the searing heat of Caleb’s touch—or just how much she craves him.

Their whirlwind romance is the stuff of high-society fantasy—but for every moment of pleasure, there is a cost. Past mistakes and tragedy shadow them both…and falling for him might be the kind of trouble she can’t afford.

Excerpt

PROLOGUE

CALEB

MY father always said I would know when the right woman came along. He was such a wise man. When it happened, I didn’t even question it because the process was so effortless. I just fell into her . . . because my heart knew her right away.

Knew she was the one for me.

I’d known her for years actually. She came to Blackstone Island to live with her grandmother after her parents were killed in a car crash. A devastated fifteen-year-old trying to adapt to a new life in a new place, trying to find where she fit in to a world so different from where she’d come—a forty-square-mile resort island off the Massachusetts coast where her grandmother ran the household at Blackwater, the family ancestral home.

Should have known of her, that is.

Our paths didn’t cross that I am aware of, but it’s possible. I rarely visited the island in those days because I was a twenty-three-year-old junior executive fresh out of Harvard Business School, learning everything I could about the family business. I traveled the world, enjoying the excitement of international boardroom deals by day and socializing at off-hours business affairs by night. I worked hard at both. Affairs, liaisons, one-night stands had all come and gone without a backward glance. Nameless faces and unremarkable encounters filled my nights whenever I wanted them to. The hopping nightlife of the big cities with even bigger players vying for a piece of the pie became my normal. I embraced every aspect that came with the lifestyle. Wealth, sexual favors, a certain celebrity born out of my name, all collected with barely any effort. For the next eight years, I had the world in the palm of my hand as I went about amassing a personal fortune in addition to increasing the family coffers.

Or so I thought.

I didn’t yet know what was missing from my life. Until her. And then, when I realized exactly who she was, and how fate had gotten the last laugh on me, it was already far too late. She’d bewitched me utterly. And furthermore, I knew she had no idea who I was or what ties connected us.

Maybe that’s what made her so intoxicating?

I didn’t know and I didn’t care because it made absolutely no difference to me. I wanted her with a primal desire I could barely understand, yet I embraced that desire wholeheartedly because I was incapable of doing anything else with it. How could I not? She had enchanted me.

However, once my brain managed to catch up, it wasn’t quite so effortless to accept this new and unfamiliar reality of feeling something for a woman beyond the unquestioning curiosity of when and if we might fuck.

I struggled against the idea of her at first for a few reasons. She was too young. My mother would never approve of us together. Others in my world would probably chew her up and spit her out, destroying her sweetness. But I soon found out my heart didn’t give a flying fuck about any of those reasons. The heart wants what it wants, and I’d discovered that for my heart, “want” was all wrapped up in the package that was Brooke Ellen Casterley.

The death of my father from the evils of cancer was an eye-opener for my siblings and me. Money can buy a lot of things, but it can’t stop the grim reaper from calling on you if it’s your time to go. Death was called the great equalizer. And it truly was. Wealth is a trivial thing when it’s only extra fuckin’ zeros on a balance sheet that makes any difference between lives lived. Doesn’t matter if you are rich or poor when you die, because none of it counts at the end. You leave this life the same way you come into it. You go out alone and take nothing. “There has to be more to life than making money, son,” he told me at the end. He took hold of my hand and squeezed as hard as his frail strength could manage so as to make me understand the importance. He had regrets and wanted to share with me what he’d learned to prevent me from making the same mistakes. I understood him clearly.

The most essential value my father tried to teach me along with my brothers and sisters was the idea of family. Family took precedence over money. “Take care of the family first and the wealth will grow, Caleb,” he said.

A strong family moving forward was the only thing that truly meant anything at the end of the day.

The Blackstones had been here on the island since the days when the Mayflower made its treacherous journey to the untamed American shores. As the eldest son it was my duty to make sure the Blackstones would still be here a hundred years from now.

My plan to fulfill my duty included her. It wouldn’t work any other way for me. I knew it the first time I ever felt the heat of her eyes as they burned me from across the room.

I knew it down in my bones.

I was going to marry that lovely, beautiful girl from England, and she would be mine.

 
 
 

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About the Author

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Raine Miller has been reading romance novels since she picked up that first Barbara Cartland book at the tender age of thirteen. And it’s a safe bet she’ll never stop, because now she writes them too! Granted Raine’s stories are edgy enough to turn Ms. Cartland in her grave, but to her way of thinking, a hot, sexy hero never goes out of fashion. A former teacher, she’s now writing sexy romance stories full time. She has a handsome prince of a husband, two brilliant sons, and two bouncy Italian Greyhounds to pull her back into the real world if the writing takes her too far away. Her sons know she likes to write stories, but gratefully have never asked to read any, thank God! Raine loves to hear from readers and to chat about the characters in her books.

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EXCERPT REVEAL: MARRIAGE GAMES (The Games Duet #1) by CD Reiss

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MARRIAGE GAMES

Series: The Games Duet #1

Author: CD Reiss

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: October 25th, 2016

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“Marriage Games is one of the most powerful novels I have ever read. CD Reiss gets into the soul of her hero and heroine and never lets go. A strong, clear picture of the psychological and emotional challenges of a D/s relationship, especially in a marriage. Why it works and why it might not. Can’t wait for the next one.” Desiree Holt, USA Today bestselling author

 

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Synopsis

THIRTY DAYS

That’s all Adam Steinbeck demands of his wife.

Thirty days in a remote cottage, doing everything he demands. After that, he’ll sign her divorce papers and give her complete ownership of their company.

THIRTY DAYS

That’s how long he has to rediscover the man he once was. The Dominant Master he hid when he fell in love with her five years ago.

THIRTY DAYS

She wants the business they built badly enough to go to the cottage for a month. Cut off ties to the world and do his bidding. She can submit to him with her body, but her heart will never yield.

She thinks this is his pathetic attempt to repair their marriage.

She’s wrong.

Buy Links

(PRE-ORDER)

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Excerpt

“Pull your skirt up.” I said it without acknowledging the possibility that she’d disobey. It felt good to use those words and that tone. To watch her eyes go to the floor.

“Trust me.” I said it so low she was just within range to hear it. “Five minutes. Then we don’t have to fight over the car.”

I stepped back and set my watch with a beep. It wasn’t about the car for her. The Jag was the least of her worries, but it was a tangible justification.

For the downcast eyes. For the way her breathing changed. Maybe every bone in her body was vanilla. Maybe not.

“Quit any time,” I said. “Just say the word.”

She laid her hands on her hips.

Curled her fingers.

Gripped fabric.

Pulled up her skirt.

The tops of her thighs came into view then met at the crotch. I was hard already and made no move to hide it. She noticed and stopped moving the skirt.

“Higher,” I said as if telling her how to center a picture over the couch. Higher was where it had to be. It wasn’t a request.

Up it went, revealing cotton underwear in a pink so pale they were almost white.

“Now what?” she asked.

“How do you feel?”

“Weird, Adam. Really weird.”

“Why?”

“Because I’m standing here with my skirt around my waist? Because you told me to? For a car, no less, which is creepy.”

She was so honest. I ached for her honesty.

“You’re not obeying me for an object. You’re obeying me so I do something. Take an action or don’t.”

“You think that’s not weird?”

“No, I don’t. And we have four minutes.” I stepped forward. Part of her discomfort was in the physical distance between us. I’d stepped away so she didn’t feel threatened, but my gaze was keeping her from relaxing. I kept my eyes on hers. I could smell her perfume and feel the shortness of her breath. “Are you turned on?”

“Sex isn’t going to get me back. I’m sorry—”

“Touch yourself.”

Her initial shock and offense lasted only a second before she pressed her lips together and reached down, shoulders angling, hand thrusting as if checking to make sure her cunt was still there.

We have hundreds of bones in our bodies, and sometimes we won’t acknowledge the preferences of the ones that scare us.

“Are you wet?”

“A little.”

I gripped the edge of the vanity and put my lips near her cheek, millimeters from touching her.

“You don’t love me anymore,” I whispered. “But I could always make you wet, and you always came for me. Like our Italy vacation. In Florence. Coming back from that club, in the little alley. Against the wall. I ripped through your underwear.”

Her breathing got shallow and fast.

“I fucked you in the dark, and when you came, you screamed my name so loud all the lights in the apartments went on.”

“That was good.” She turned her face toward mine.

When her lips nearly touched me, I pulled away just enough. “I said I wouldn’t touch you.”

“I changed my mind.”

I wasn’t fooled. Her arousal was talking. I owned her. She’d do whatever I told her. But I wanted something very simple. I wanted her pleasure. “Take the juice from your cunt and rub it on your clit. Make it wet.”

“Adam.”

“What?”

“What’s come over you?”

“Do it.” I felt her arm move against me. “Rub back and forth. Be consistent. One-two-one-two.”

When I felt that she had it, I stepped back. She stopped. Her knees were bent slightly and her fingers had taken her cunt from the side of the crotch, not the waistband. She never ceased to surprise me.

“One-two-one-two, huntress.”

“Is this your way of getting back at me?”

“One-two-one-two. Let me see you come. You’re so beautiful when you come. You’ve gone this far.”

Her body must have been able to override her mind, because she moved her finger again, closing her eyes. Her cheeks reddened and her knees bent more deeply.

“In Florence. An hour after we got to the hotel. I came so deep in you that night. I fucked you from behind with your leg up on the dresser. I wanted to thrust my whole body inside you. I loved you that much. And I gave up who I was. Last night, at the club, I remembered what I was. I was a man who was obeyed. I dominated women, and they submitted to me. The result was what you’re about to feel. Complete pleasure.”

She let out a long, low groan, leaning on the vanity, twisting. I could have fucked her right then. I could have bent her over the counter and pounded her. But that wasn’t the point. No. Watching her hand move under her clothes because I commanded it. That was the point.

An uh escaped her throat. Years of marriage had taught me that meant she was about to come.

My watch beeped.

“Time’s up,” I said.

Her eyes went wide. Her hand stopped.

“Thank you,” I said. “We’re done. I’ll send you the title to the car. You might want to pull your skirt down, since I can’t lock the door from the outside.”

It was hard to walk away from her panting, bent frame without tasting her cunt or even seeing more of her reaction, but I turned the corner, unlocked the door, and left the bathroom.

 
 
 

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About the Author

CD Reiss is a USA Today and Amazon bestseller. She still has to chop wood and carry water, which was buried in the fine print. Her lawyer is working it out with God but in the meantime, if you call and she doesn’t pick up, she’s at the well, hauling buckets.

Born in New York City, she moved to Hollywood, California to get her master’s degree in screenwriting from USC. In case you want to know, that went nowhere, but it did give her a big enough ego to write novels.

Critics have dubbed the books “poetic,” “literary,” and “hauntingly atmospheric,” which is flattering enough for her to put it in a bio, but embarrassing enough for her not to tell her husband, or he might think she’s some sort of braggart who’s too good to chop a cord of wood.

If you meet her in person, you should call her Christine.

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EXCERPT REVEAL: ROYALLY SCREWED (Royally #1) by Emma Chase

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ROYALLY SCREWED

Series: Royally #1

Author: Emma Chase

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: October 18, 2016

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Synopsis

 

Emma Chase, New York Times bestselling author of the Tangled Series & Legal Briefs Series, returns with the first of three sizzling standalone books about a family of racy, irresistible Royals.

Nicholas Arthur Frederick Edward Pembrook, Crowned Prince of Wessco, aka “His Royal Hotness”, is wickedly charming, devastatingly handsome, and unabashedly arrogant—hard not to be when people are constantly bowing down to you.

Then, one snowy night in Manhattan, the prince meets a dark haired beauty who doesn’t bow down. Instead, she throws a pie in his face.

Nicholas wants to find out if she tastes as good as her pie, and this heir apparent is used to getting what he wants.

***

Dating a prince isn’t what waitress Olivia Hammond ever imagined it would be.

There’s a disapproving queen, a wildly inappropriate spare heir, relentless paparazzi, and brutal public scrutiny. While they’ve traded in horse drawn carriages for Rolls Royces and haven’t chopped anyone’s head off lately—the royals are far from accepting of this commoner.

But to Olivia—Nicholas is worth it.

***

Nicholas grew up with the whole world watching, and now Marriage Watch is in full force. In the end, Nicholas has to decide who he is, but more importantly, who he wants to be: a King… or the man who gets to love Olivia forever.

Buy Links
(PRE.ORDER)
iBooks  | Amazon Print   | Audible  |  B&N  | IndieBound  | BAM!

 

 

Excerpt

The next week is blissfully uneventful. I address Palace business during the day, and spend my nights with Olivia—which are so much more than blissful.

While I work, she relaxes like I want her to. She walks the grounds and has found a friend in Franny. They’ve had lunch together a few times, which doesn’t exactly thrill me, but at the very least, I know she’s safe with Simon’s wife.

Franny, and her forked tongue, will protect Olivia from the Lucy-types looking to wound her with their half-truths.

On the rare occasions my brother is sober, he becomes increasingly agitated—like he’s unable to sit still, to stand his own company, or any sound that resembles silence. Finally, he decides to throw a welcome home party for himself.

I’m in my bathroom preparing for his royal yacht party, just showered with a towel around my hips, scraping the last of the shaving cream off my jaw, when Olivia appears in the doorway.

I thought she was lovely from the first moment I saw her. But here, now—her bare, soft skin wrapped in a pink silk robe, her face glowing with well-rested happiness…she’s magnificent.

“So…do you guys have like a gift shop or a convenience store around here?”

I laugh. “A gift shop?”

She holds up a light blue disposable razor. “I’m out of razors. This one’s so dull I could run it over my tongue without drawing blood.”

“Let’s not test that theory. I like your tongue too much.” I wipe my chin with a towel. “I can have the staff bring one to your room.”

The devil on my shoulder—and the angel too—smack me upside the head. And they whisper a much better idea.

“Or…I could help you out.”

Her brows draw together. “Help me out? I can’t use your razor.”

“No, definitely not—you’d cut yourself to ribbons.” I finger the sharp, heavy straight blade. “What I mean is…I could shave for you.”

Her eyes darken, the way they do when she’s right on the edge—right before she comes. And she moves closer to me.

“Do you…want to do that?”

My gaze drags down, down, over every sumptuous inch of her body.

“Oh, yes.”

 
 
 

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About the Author

 

Emma Chase is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the hot and hilarious Tangled series and The Legal Briefs series. Emma lives in New Jersey with her husband, two children and two naughty (but really cute) dogs. She has a long-standing love/hate relationship with caffeine.

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BLOG TOUR + EXCERPT: CHANDLER (Fixed #5) by Laurelin Paige

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CHANDLER

Series: Fixed Trilogy Spinoff – Fixed #5

Author: Laurelin Paige

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: September 20, 2016

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Synopsis

I’m good in a boardroom, but I’m better in the bedroom. Much better. I can charm the skirt off any woman in one encounter. I’ll even give her an orgasm before I put her in a cab. Or three. No more or she’ll start making plans for the future and I’m not into that.

Or I wasn’t until Genevive Fasbender. She’s the first woman in five years that I want to spend the whole night with. And she’s the first woman who’s told me I’m not what she wants in a lover, even after multiple O’s. She’s brash and bold and stubborn as hell, and she doesn’t believe it’s possible to satisfy her.

But I’m up for the challenge.

And after an incident in my brother’s office closet―a downright dirty incident―I think I’m just the guy to deliver.

Genevive Fasbender will never know what’s coming.

Buy Links

Amazon | iTunes | Nook

Check out the musical inspiration for this novel on Spotify.

Excerpt

Five minutes later, the valet pulls up with my car. Genevieve raises an eyebrow. “A Bugatti?”

I’m so impressed she can name the model that I practically jizz in my pants. “It’s the best.”

She shakes her head, and I swear I hear her mutter something about rich men and their toys, but I don’t respond, too occupied with inspecting my car and then passing the attendant the cash I promised him earlier for returning my vehicle in perfect condition.

I slide into the driver’s seat, and when I look over at Genevieve as she buckles her seatbelt, a wave of pure, unadulterated lust rolls through me. I’m very aware that I’ve trapped her, that she’s now defenseless to my whims. Not that I’d take advantage, but goddamn, to think that I could…

I nearly shiver at my own vile thoughts.

Glad she can’t know what I’m thinking, I flash her a smile. “So. Where am I taking you?”

“I’m staying at the Park Hyatt on 57th Street.”

“Fancy.” The Park Hyatt is one of the nicest luxury hotels in New York. That means this girl has money, which isn’t a bad thing. Just, the swell of my wallet in my back pocket is usually one of my better attributes. If wealth doesn’t attract her, I hope I’m not shit out of luck when it comes to getting an invitation up to her room.

Apparently, I’m transparent because she asks, “Not impressed?”

“Quite the opposite. I’m worried you won’t have a reason to be impressed with me.” Now I’m the one who can’t believe how honest I’m being.

“It’s a valid worry,” she says after a beat, and I can’t tell if she’s teasing or being blunt. Can’t tell if I should prepare for gut-wrenching disappointment or dive into another round of sexy banter.

I concentrate on my driving instead, speeding up before slipping expertly into a tight opening in the adjacent lane.

I’ll admit I’m showing off.

“Smashing,” she says with a tone that vibrates through my body like I’m a tuning fork.

Then, abruptly, she laughs, and I turn my head toward her, alarmed at the source of her amusement.

“I still can’t believe you drive a Bugatti in the city. I can’t decide if that makes you brilliant or as mad as a bag of ferrets.”

“Brilliant, of course.” Though, with her so close, I feel more like I’m going crazy. “What can I say? I like things that are fast.”

“Of course you do.”

“You don’t?” I raise a questioning brow. “Maybe you don’t understand how awesome fast can be.” I put my foot on the gas and race down the next block to prove my point.

The traffic light turns red as I approach the intersection, and I ease the brakes. “See? Fast is fun.”

“The problem with fast is it’s over too quickly.”

Is that innuendo? Her gaze pierces into me, and the air around us feels tight and charged, and I’m suddenly certain that I will die if I don’t get to taste her tonight.

Even if she didn’t mean anything more when she made her statement, I certainly do when I say, “Don’t worry. I know when to take my time.”

She exhales, slowly, and I swear I can feel it. As though she’s already in my arms and her breath is grazing every inch of my bare skin. No matter what happens after this, I know she at least feels this…this attraction. Or whatever it is.

Her voice is low and sultry when she replies. “You’re not talking about cars anymore. But do you really take your time? I’d guess you bolt the minute you’re finished.” She’s so blunt, so direct, and I don’t know if it’s a her thing or an English thing, but I like it.

I also like this conversation we’re having. Because we’re drawing the lines, and that means the potential for tonight is high. So I answer with a nod, making sure she understands that she’s correct in thinking I’ll bolt. Because I will.

 
 
 

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About the Author

Laurelin Paige - headshot

USA Today and New York Times Bestselling Author Laurelin Paige is a sucker for a good romance and gets giddy anytime there’s kissing, much to the embarrassment of her three daughters. Her husband doesn’t seem to complain, however. When she isn’t reading or writing sexy stories, she’s probably singing, watching Game of Thrones or The Walking Dead, or dreaming of Adam Levine. She’s also a proud member of Mensa International though she doesn’t do anything with the organization except use it as material for her bio. She is represented by Rebecca Friedman.

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EXCERPT REVEAL: EXPERIENCED (A Real Man #4) by Jenika Snow

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Coming September 29th!

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Synopsis

He’ll show her how a real man treats a woman…

SABINE

I’ve never known how good it could feel to be taken care of by a man who knew what he was doing.

Until I was with Hugo…


HUGO

I was older than her.

She was innocent, hadn’t experienced all that life had to offer.

I could give her that experience.

Sabine consumed my thoughts, made me desire nothing else but her. No other woman compared to her, and because of that, I haven’t been with a woman for four years, which was also the last time I saw Sabine.

But I was done feeling guilty for what I desired. I wanted Sabine in my life, by my side, and I was about to make that a reality.

I didn’t know if she’d ever been treated the way a female should … but I was going to show her how a real man takes care of a woman.


Warning: If you’re into super short, hot, dirty reads containing a much older hero and younger heroine … keep on reading. This story is guaranteed to make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside, give you that sweet HEA we all deserve, and make you want to search out an experienced older man for yourself.

Excerpt

Hugo


She’s all I thought about for the last four years.
Since I left after her high school, and eighteenth birthday, celebration, Sabine had been on my mind.
Four. Fucking. Years.
I closed my eyes and pictured her.
I always thought about Sabine.
I could picture her long black hair … strands I wanted to wrap around my hand as I made love to her.
I imagined her blue eyes staring up at me, wide, pleasure-filled, as I thrust into her body.
I could picture my hands, mouth, and tongue moving along her womanly curves.
Four years of me wanting a woman I knew I shouldn’t desire, but whom I couldn’t get out of my head.
She was so much younger than I was, but that wasn’t an issue. The age difference didn’t bother me in the slightest. She was a woman, twenty-one years old, and she was smart, perfect for me. Sabine had always known what she wanted out in life, and she’d excelled at what she put her mind to. I might not have seen her in years, but I knew she had only gotten more determined in that regard. That wasn’t a trait someone just let go of.

I also didn’t care that she was Leo’s—my childhood friend’s—daughter. Maybe I should have, but I didn’t let a complication like that stop me from aching for her in a way that made it hard to think of much else.
It had been four long years since I’d even been intimate with a woman. I just couldn’t bring myself to go there with them, not when the only one I wanted was Sabine.
After all this time, I knew she was the only one I’d ever want, and as experienced in life as I was, I knew this wasn’t a passing desire.
I ran a hand over my face, breathing out wearily.
“Would you like something else to drink, Mr. Alfonso?”
I looked up at the flight attendant and shook my head. “No, thank you, Marcella.” I had three more hours to go before I landed in New York, and another hour drive to get to get to Leo and his wife Annabelle’s house. And by the time I even got to their home, it would be too late to see anyone really.
Getting a hotel would have been a simpler option, but it was out of the question, not when Leo and Annabelle insisted I stay in their guesthouse. I knew better than to argue with either of them.

I should have been here earlier.
I’d missed Sabine’s graduation, and even though I’d known about this event for some time, switching my business obligations around hadn’t been possible. That didn’t stop me from feeling this immense guilt.
I reached into my pocket and pulled out the white leather box. Opening it, I stared down at the diamond tennis bracelet I’d bought for her.
Sabine was the only woman I’d ever given jewelry to, and although it might seem like an innocent gesture, a congratulatory gift for her accomplishments, the necklace, and now this bracelet that I’d give to her, meant a little more to me than she’d ever know.
She meant more to me than she’d ever know.


****

Sabine


It had been four years since I’d seen him.
Four years of me wanting a man who I knew I could never have.
Four years of me comparing every guy I tried to have a relationship with him … Hugo.

I’d told myself I needed to wake up, to realize I could never have a man more than twice my age and my father’s lifelong friend.
But telling myself what I should and shouldn’t want was a lot harder to accomplish when what I wanted was unattainable, yet still within my reach.
I stared across the table at my parents. We’d finished throwing a small dinner party in celebration of me graduating college and getting my bachelor’s degree, and now it was just the three of us. I should be focusing on graduate school, getting my Master’s in education, but knowing Hugo was coming in tonight was all I could think of.
Hugo Romanov.
Just thinking his name had my skin prickling with awareness, had every part of me speeding up. Adrenaline rushing through my body gave me this reaction.
“He’ll be here sometime tonight, although I’m not sure what time.” I looked at my father. He leaned back in the dining room chair and lifted his wine glass to his lips. He looked over at my mother, who also had a wine glass in front of her.
“It’s been what, four years since he was last in the States?” my mother asked.

My father nodded. “Yes, for Sabine’s high school graduation. Although he came back about a year ago on business, he couldn’t take the extra time to fly out to see us.”
My heart sped up knowing he’d been here, probably states away, yet still closer than when he was in Europe.
“I bet you’re excited to see Hugo again,” my mother said and took a sip of her wine, looking over the rim at me.
I shrugged, not about to show how nervous I was, or how much anticipation thrummed through me.
We’d finished off a bottle of wine between the three of us, and the second bottle was already half empty. I reached out and ran my finger along the base of my glass. “It’s been a long time,” I replied softly, thinking about the last time I’d seen him. I remembered vividly the way he smelled of dark and delicious cologne. But he’d also smelled of aged books and experience, and it was such a heady, intoxicating aroma. On instinct, I lifted my hand and touched the rose gold feather necklace he’d given me. It had been a present from Hugo for my accomplishment on graduating high school, but also making valedictorian.
I’d worn it every day since receiving it.
“You two always had this special bond.”

I looked up at my father after he spoke. “Not really.” He might have been more of a presence in my life when I was younger, and he lived in the States, but I’d never say we’d been close.
“Of course you did. Hugo would spend hours with you at the kitchen table teaching you Russian. Remember?”
I did, vividly. Our last lesson had been when I was seventeen years old, and he’d come to visit after being away on business in Russia.
“That’s because Dad wanted him to make me more ’rounded.’” I smiled at my dad. He’d been teasing when he’d made the suggestion I start learning a language, but Hugo had taken it seriously. For the next two years, from the age of fifteen to seventeen, whenever Hugo was in town, he’d spend hours with me, teaching me his native language—one of the four he spoke fluently.
The truth was I could only speak a handful of phrases of Russian, mainly because I wasn’t able to concentrate when he was near.
But I’d tried to come to the realization that my personal reality did not include Hugo in it.
And even after all these years, it was still hard to make that sink in.

 
 
 

About the Author

Jenika Snow is a USA Today Bestselling Author that lives in the northwest with her husband and their two daughters. Before she started writing full-time she worked as a nurse.

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