Cover Reveal! Hard Time By Kristen Luciani

COVER REVEAL

Title: Hard Time

Author: Kristen Luciani

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Cover Design: Book Cover Couture

Release Date: September 12, 2017

 

BLURB

A man’s need for revenge. A woman’s career ambition. Will their love change everything?

Ex-con Jeff Torres trusted the wrong guy, and now he wants revenge. After five years in prison, he knows he can’t pull off his scheme alone. But who can he trust?

L.A. publicist Ariana Carlson is an ambitious career woman. Working seven days a week has led to cold sheets at night. When she meets the strong, confident, and secretive Jeff, she wonders if her evening luck might be changing…

Jeff enlists her help in his quest for revenge, but Ariana can tell that something is off. Of course, she’s got a few secrets of her own that could make romance impossible. As Jeff begins to crave Ariana more than his payback, will the publicist’s true motives take their love to the next level or send the ex-con back to jail?

Hard Time is a standalone romantic suspense novel. If you like sizzling chemistry, fast-paced thrills, and tales of revenge, then you’ll love bestselling author Kristen Luciani’s passionate story.

GOODREADS LINK: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35017536-hard-time

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Hot & Sinful Nights Spotlight: No Strings Attached By Marie Long

You’ll love Hot and Sinful Nights. 22 full length novels including…No Strings Attached by Marie Long…

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Desmond Black worked the doors of the New York City clubs for five years as he struggled to escape the haunting nightmares of his younger sister’s death. One night, he takes his anger out on an unruly patron, ultimately costing him his job. While drowning his sorrows in whiskey, Desmond meets the mysterious and talented bass player, Tianna Gadson. He senses there’s more to her than she’s letting on. The closer he gets to her, the more he realizes his feelings for her have become hazardous to them both—attracting the attention of a dangerous underground organization with its sights on Tianna and her family.

 

Is Desmond willing to risk his life for Tianna? Or will he be forced to keep their relationship strictly business?

Excerpt:

Whiskey tends to taste better when my brain is wrecked. Not even the light jazz music playing on stage can soothe my nerves. My mind has been in a week-long spiral from hell, and I wish I could just forget.
But that’s not gonna happen. I’m a man with dignity, and I stand by my decision.
You didn’t take the first swing; he did, I keep telling myself. Last week is a blur. That beautiful girl—what was her name? Danielle?—thought she could sneak into the club with a fake ID and her fortysomething ‘boyfriend.’ But I’ve dealt with that shit in my line of work far too many times. Her sugar daddy thought she was privileged to go to this club or something because she was so young, so ‘innocent.’ No, you stupid sick fuck.
I’d expected the usual: a plastered look of utter shock, a declaration of authenticity, and a smirk as some rolled-up cash was discreetly forced into my hand. I would’ve proceeded to bounce them right on their pretentious asses. But no, this guy decided to be a punk instead, lashing out with a solid punch to my ribs. If I hadn’t stepped back, he would’ve broken his hand on my damn near harder-than-steel body. I’d returned the sentiment. My knuckles felt nice across that asshole’s face. But apparently, the ‘excessive force’ had cost me a one-week job suspension without pay. Unlike the grungier underground New York City clubs I’d been used to for years, the elite Posh Diamond Luxury Lounge preferred subtler means to remove unruly patrons. Thank God I had friends in high places who were able to get my assault charges dropped.
I pick up my shot glass and stare at its light-brown contents. I’m sure that bastard’s doing whatever he pleases to that poor girl. He strikes me as the type, and rarely am I ever wrong. It comes with the territory—and the job—of being around a lot of personalities for long periods of time. You can read people, know their intentions, empathize, almost like a sixth sense.
I down the shot in one gulp and set the glass on the bar top with a clunk, thinking about how fucked up some people are.
Charlie comes over with a bottle of whiskey. “You look like shit. Need another?”
I can’t waste away like this. I made a promise a long time ago that I wouldn’t. I nod and casually flick my hand. “Yeah, sure, man. One more.”
The corner of his mouth twitches, and he fills the shot glass. I swipe it up and stare at its contents.
“Listen, Desmond.” Charlie wipes the bar with a white cloth. “It could’ve been worse. At least you still have a job, y’know?”
I snort. “Shit like that gets under my skin, Charlie. There’re too many desperate people out there looking for acceptance. For love, whatever that means.” I down the shot. “I can’t help them.”
“No, you can’t. For some people, that’s the only life they know.”
I swivel in the high-backed barstool and look out at the crowd. The nightclub’s packed for a Thursday night. Couples sit at tiny tables and loungers, and larger groups claim the semicircular booths surrounding a small stage, where a four-man jazz band plays. “Say, you got any work around here for me?” I ask Charlie without looking at him.
“Nah, kid. Joe’s got it.”
Applause erupts from the crowd as the band wraps up. I look back at Charlie, who’s nervously checking his watch.
“Damn, where is she?” he mutters.
I arch an eyebrow. “Who?”
“Marigold.”
“Since when did you start hiring strippers?”
He chuckles. “She’s a local jazz artist. She was scheduled for an eleven o’clock gig, but…” He checks his watch again and frowns. “This ain’t the way to make a good first impression. Know what I’m sayin’?”
I nod and gaze out at the crowd, letting the lull of voices ease my mind. So many personalities and so many stories. Some of those stories I know all too well, like the three men in a round booth center right of the stage—players, all of them, from their too-nice button-down shirts and designer blazers to their flashy bling and gaudy sports shoes.
Their faces are flushed, their eyes glazed. They laugh and make lewd comments at an approaching waitress carrying a pitcher of beer. She hastily refills their drinks, avoiding eye contact, turns, and hustles to another table.
“Christ, there she is!” Charlie suddenly says, and I whip my head around.
A girl rushes through the entrance, snaking her way through a small group of people on their way out. She carries a black guitar case on her back. A bright-orange marigold is tucked in the white headband holding back her shoulder-length dreadlocks. Out of breath, she reaches the bar and plasters an exhausted smile on her full lips. “Hi, I’m Marigold,” she says between pants. “Sorry I’m late.”
Charlie’s lips form a thin line. “S’alright, Miss Marigold.” He gestures to the stage with his head. “Go on. Your audience awaits.”
She smiles graciously and brushes past me. For a brief moment, we lock eyes. She’s got those doe eyes, brought out with a little makeup. She’s beautiful. Her gaze falters and moves to a point beside me, as if she’s overwhelmed by the initial contact. I sense beyond that beauty, she carries an ugly story.
She gets up on stage, sits on the stool, and retrieves her bass guitar and a small MP3 player from her backpack-like case. It takes her less than a minute to set up. She does a quick tune of her strings then smiles at the audience. The stage track lights shine on her smooth mocha skin and bring out the bright red of her halter-top.
“Hi, everyone. My name is Marigold. Thank you for having me here tonight. I hope you’re all enjoying yourselves.” She scans the room as she talks, her eyes settling briefly at the bar—on Charlie, most likely. Lucky son of a bitch.
A mix of mellow drum and piano accompaniment filters through the stage speakers, and Marigold starts to play. Her fingers glide across the strings with ease as she produces some articulate vibes that I can’t help bobbing my head to. The audience falls silent, puts down their phones, and stares attentively toward the stage, moving their bodies in time with the beat.
Then she starts to sing. She doesn’t need a mic. Her beautiful voice, relaxed and flowing like smooth velvet, carries throughout the room, complementing the low, mellow strums of the guitar.
“…Why, oh why, do the birds gotta fly?
Fly so far, far away from me?
Why, oh why, can’t I spread these wings?
Spread these wings and fly so free…”
“Wow” doesn’t even begin to describe her multiple talents.
Charlie tends to a patron a few stools down then returns to me.
“She’s good,” I say.
Charlie nods. “Yeah. I guess I can forgive her for being late just this once.”
Smiling, I look back at her. She’s fearless as she sits up there alone, strumming her heart out. But fear and doubt are definitely in her. She reminds me of Little Miss Danielle, except Marigold looks several years older. Marigold’s song speaks of what I can see in her eyes. She sings about pain and running away, but she hides it in her catchy tune. The audience seems none the wiser.
My smile fades as I look at the group of guys in the corner, who appear pretty damn close to their drinking limits. They eye Marigold like a pack of hungry wolves. Thankfully, they stay put and quiet while she plays. Wandering waiters and waitresses keep their drinks coming.
Marigold sings four more songs, and before I know it, it’s already midnight. Marigold’s show is over. She rises from her stool, bows, and receives massive applause from the crowd. Even the drunk guys are on their feet, clapping wildly and whistling. She packs up her things. Some audience members make their ways to the exit.
I release the breath I’d been unconsciously holding. “Wow, Charlie, you have got to have her back here.”
“I plan to.” Charlie grins. “That was the loudest applause I’ve heard all night. Not bad for a stripper, eh?”
It’s my turn to laugh.
Marigold stops at the bar and smiles at Charlie. “Thank you so much for letting me play. And I’m sorry again for being late.”
Charlie shakes his head. “Don’t worry about that. You did a good show. When are you available to come back?”
Her doe eyes widen. “Whenever you want me, sir!”
He grins. “Okay, how about this Saturday? Same time?”
“That’s perfect! I will be here. Thank you so much.”
They shake hands, and she brushes past me again. The side of her guitar case bumps into my arm. She stops and turns around, her face flushed. “I’m sorry, sir.”
I smile at her cute look of embarrassment. “It’s all right. Hey, you were pretty good up there. Great show.”
“Thank you.”
I look at the case. “Do you need some help with that?”
“No, I got it. Thanks.” She heads for the exit.
I watch her leave, taking in every bit of her from behind. When she’s gone, I face Charlie, who smirks at me. “Ever the gentleman, aren’t you?”
“Yeah, and what of it?” I puff out my chest.
He laughs and moves farther down the bar, gathering up the empty wine and shot glasses.
I glance out at the rest of the club. The crowd’s gotten considerably thinner. I look for the guys in the corner, but they’re gone. A waitress is busy cleaning the table with a grateful look on her face.
Remembering the primal way those guys ogled her, I feel my throat tighten. Did those guys leave with Marigold? She couldn’t have gone far unless she took a taxi home. I tap the bar to get Charlie’s attention. “Hey, I’ll see you later.”
Charlie gives me a small salute and turns to another group of customers. I grab my baseball cap out of the empty chair next to me and hurry outside. Even on an early Friday morning, Midtown Manhattan is still busy. I look around for any signs of Marigold, but she’s nowhere to be found. Shoving my hands in my pockets, I cross the street toward the subway station. A small crowd emerges, and something on the stairs catches my eye. I stop. On the second step is an orange marigold, trampled by many feet. My skin prickles. Is she in trouble? I look down the stairs. A few more people come and go, brushing past me as though I don’t exist. I head underground…

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About the Author:

Marie Long is a novelist who enjoys the snowy weather, the mountains, and a cup of hot white chocolate. She’s an avid supporter of literacy movements like We Need Diverse Books (WNDB) and National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo).
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Hot & Sinful Nights Spotlight: Noblesword By Katalina Leon

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Exclusively featuring….

NOBLESWORD

By Katalina Leon

 

Did curiosity really kill the cat, or did the cat decide that facing life with her curiosity unsatisfied wasn’t worth living?

If you felt safe, would you sign a contract that allowed an exclusive sex club to claim you as their property for twelve hours?

If exciting partners could deliver your wildest fantasies, would you submit?

If the situation were completely secure and all members vetted, would you say yes?

If management knew what you really wanted and not just what you said you wanted, would you say, take me, I’m ready?

Gwen Bel Geddes just did.

Now she’s going to discover the secret to one of the world’s most exclusive sexual boutiques. Going undercover as a submissive, Gwen turns herself over body and soul to be transformed into an erotic plaything for wealthy dominant men and a very special man stakes his claim on her.

Noblesword is a lush “free play zone” where adults can express themselves and test their personal boundaries. Erotic games of every description are played here. Gwen must determine for herself if the risqué Noblesword is as dangerous as it looks or simply an erotic circus of the mind.

Would you sign the contract and take the biggest sexual adventure of your life?

Note: At Noblesword sexual expression is encouraged. Be warned that the novel contains graphic material, BDSM, some sensual f/f interaction along with a described m/m/f ménage.

 

Noblesword -katalina-leonWant a free taste of NOBLESWORD?

Claim a sample chapter here: https://www.instafreebie.com/free/IJTUo

 

Author Bio.

katalina-leon-picKatalina Leon is an artist and author who can’t commit to a single romance subgenre. Her favorite playgrounds are historical, sci-fi, contemporary, and most of all paranormal realms. Lately, she has paranormal romance and vampires on the brain. Katalina brings a sense of adventure and a touch of the mystical to romance. She believes there’s a daring heroine inside every woman who wants to take a wild ride with a strong, worthy hero.

 

Read More from Katalina Leon

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Read The First Chapter Of Hard Time!

You don’t have to wait any longer…at least to read the first chapter! LOL.

Sorry, I know I’m a terrible tease. But trust me, Hard Time will be worth the wait. Jeff and Ari are finally making their way back onto Kindles…only a few more weeks to go!

Here’s the first chapter. If you love it, comment below! Actually, if you hate it, I want you to comment as well! I want to hear EVERYTHING!!! <3

Chapter One

Jeff

 

Five fucking years down the drain, and for what? To win a pissing contest against the schmuck who got my ass terminated and destroyed my life?

I take one final deep breath to blunt the feelings of rage that always bubble to the surface whenever I think of that bastard. The prison alarm blares, making my ears ring for what I sure as hell hope will be the last time. The automatic metal door creaks open, and I step into the warm late afternoon sunshine, finally seconds away from freedom.

All I need to do is walk through those tall wrought iron gates, the ones wrapped in barbed, electrified wire. There were always stories floating around about inmates who’d felt the need to test out the silent threat, but ended up roasting themselves. Same idiots who weren’t smart enough not to get caught. Five years was a damn long time, but not enough of a sentence that would make me risk deep-frying my balls. And yeah, even though I got out early on good behavior, I was one of those idiots. I did get caught.

Gone is the bright orange jumpsuit. I look normal, even though I feel anything but. The Nevada desert air is dry, stagnant, and still. In any other situation, it’d be thick enough to choke me, but being on the other side, the free side? It’s so fucking sweet. I adjust my belt, several notches too big. Being in lockdown takes more than a few inches off the waistline, mainly due to grueling daily workouts, food that was best described as maggot meal, lamenting, and plotting…mostly plotting.

The alarm sounds again, shattering the blissful silence, and the large gates swing open, allowing me access to the outside world. So many thoughts run through my mind about what had gone wrong on that fateful night. Almost everything had been within my control, but I overlooked a single detail, and it was fucking major. I lost my focus. Didn’t see the signs. Walked right into the goddamned trap.

So, now, there’s a score to settle. A big one. Because the last time stripped me of everything.

I turn and look back at the dark gray concrete building known as San Pedro State Penitentiary, my home of the last five years.

No fucking way will I be back here again. Ever.

Idiots have nothing to lose. I have everything to gain.

My partner Remo is waiting for me at the exit in a beat-up, navy blue Honda Accord. The car is as non-descript as they come. Remo on the other hand? He towers over me, over most people, at almost seven feet tall. Dark hair, dark skin, menacing eyes. He looks like a badass motherfucker, but he’s one of the best guys I know. Huge heart in a very unexpected package. I peer in the windows of his car, furrowing my brow at the paper bags scattered on the backseat. He also has an unhealthy obsession with saturated fat. Remo gives a half-shrug as I open the passenger side door. “I’m trying to run it into the ground before I buy something new.”

“Better to have a getaway car like this than the pimped out Hummer that Rand drives.” I yank the door handle and pull it open, sinking into the bucket seat. The stale stench of fast food immediately assaults my nose. “Jesus, Remo. This shit’ll kill you,” I say, kicking at the bags surrounding my feet.

“It’s how I fuel up. You know that. I think best loaded up on grease and salt.”

“Yeah, well, it’s too bad I made you skip dinner the night I got pinched. Maybe things might’ve gone differently.”

“And now you’ve paid the price. I bet you’ll never make me skip another meal again.” He puts the key in the ignition and the car coughs its way to life. “How was the clink?”

A loaded question. To say it’s full of interesting characters is a gross understatement. The shadiest ones had their own personal lines to the outside, and with a little bit of cash, you can get a lot of shit from them. But I didn’t care about things like porn, smokes, or booze. I wanted information, which was harder, and more expensive, to get. But like minds always come together, and I used my steady stream of cash to get me exactly what I needed to concoct a plan, the plan that would make me whole again. “Not horrible. Gave me time to clear my head.”

Remo sticks his hand in a grease-stained bag on the console and digs around, producing a fistful of soggy french fries. “Want some? Looks like you can use some food.”

I stare at his hand and then at him. “Thanks, but I’ll pass.”

“Not good enough for ya, huh? Even after five years of choking down that horseshit they’ve been shoveling onto your plate?”

I snicker. “I am starving. How about a beer? And I’m talking about a cold one, not one you pull from some magical hiding place in this shit heap.”

“Is that the way you talk to the only guy who volunteered to pick your ass up in Nevada and drive you all the way back to LA?” Remo shakes his head and pulls the clunker onto the freeway heading south. “Jesus Christ, in about twenty minutes, I’ll be an accomplice to your parole violation. Not to mention I’m the only one who has the inside scoop about where the star of our upcoming show is gonna be later tonight, and guess what? A Grammy ain’t the only thing she’ll be wrapping her hands around and squeezing.”

****

Ariana

“We’re getting married!”

Even though my head is blissfully thick with cobwebs, courtesy of the gallon of vodka I’ve already consumed, those words reverberate between my ears like clanging symbols. I can’t drown them out, and believe me, I’ve tried. For hours.

Pulsating beats vibrate the lacquered floor beneath my stilettos as I make a futile attempt to dance away the hollow feeling in my heart. A stream of perspiration drizzles down the back of my neck, making me cringe. I’m alone…alone in the most frivolous and artificial world I can imagine. Hollywood. La La Land. Tinseltown. Call it what you want. It’s still a big ass bubble of superficiality.

I’m jaded. At twenty-eight. Of course, out here, that’s pretty damned ancient, not that I have any delusions about a career in acting or modeling. Nope, I don’t have any aspirations to be one of those diva bitches. My goal is simple. Keep said bitches out of the media. Note, I said nothing about keeping them out of trouble. My very expensive services only cover so much. I’m not their babysitter.

I’m a publicist.

A swift hip check jolts me from my scattered thoughts. “Hey! You’re dry.” My assistant Layna points to the empty highball glass in my hand.

“It’s not doing any good. I think I’ve drunk myself sober.”

Layna snickers. “Good! Grammy after-parties always equate to paparazzi poison for our clients, so it’s probably better if you’re sober. I sure as hell hope you’re ready to do some serious damage control.”

I let out a deep sigh. “Aren’t I always?”

Layna’s smile fades. “You’re still upset, aren’t you?” It was a question, but the tone of her voice made it sound more like a statement. She’d never understand, not that I’d ever bothered to explain the deep-rooted feelings I didn’t even want to acknowledge to myself.

“It’s just a little fast, that’s all. Can you blame me for being apprehensive?”

“I get it. I just think you need to let things go. She’s not you, Ari.”

No, she definitely isn’t.

I manage a weak smile and wave my glass at Layna. “Maybe it is time for another drink.”

“As long as you promise me that you won’t be dragging me into the office at three o’clock in the morning to handle disaster recovery for our leading ladies.”

“That’s part of the job, love. You signed up for that shit day one.” I link my arm through hers and push through the throng of sweaty bodies grinding to the deafening music. Groping hands slither over my hips and ass as we move, one even has the audacity to pinch. I spin around, narrowing my eyes at the leering dumbass. Pretty boy. Fucking stupid as hell though. I grit my teeth. It’s bad enough my clients cause tsunamis with their less-than-aboveboard antics, I don’t need my good name spiraling down after them. I have to be careful. Social media can crush me if I make a single wrong move. And I can’t afford to have that kind of negative attention on me right now.

Still…I don’t have patience for this crap.

I lean toward his tall, built frame, my lips curling into a saccharin sweet smile. “Did you need something?”

He grins, swaying toward me. “Just a dance. Then maybe a fuck.”

I squeeze Layna’s hand and avert my eyes in an attempt to look demure before I knock him on his cocky ass. “I’m pretty sure that a guy who looks like you can get a girl to drop her panties without having to manhandle her.” I flutter my eyelashes and move in for the kill. “But I can’t say she’d be too eager to screw you once she finds out your dick’s the size of a peanut. Because really, if it wasn’t, wouldn’t you be waiting for me to come to you?” I wink. “Try not to overcompensate too much. In this town, you need an air of mystery. Especially with a small penis.”

I don’t use brute force unless I absolutely have to. I’m better with words. It’s why I get away with charging such exorbitant retainers to preserve livelihoods.

And, despite everything polluting my mind, tonight is a good night. One of my clients walked away with the Grammy for Best Female Pop Vocalist. It’s celebration time for a job well done, all around.

The bar is packed. We stand around, pressed together like a bunch of slimy sardines in a can, since the air in the club is drenched with humidity. A whiff of Prada cologne floats under my nose and I stifle an inward groan.

“Ariana Carlson?”

I paste on a smile and twist in the direction of the gruff voice to my right. You never know whose tarnished reputation is in need of polishing, which is another reason why I don’t go around pummeling drunk, handsy dipshits in bars. I’m always on the job.

“Yes?”

Dark eyes crinkle in the corners as they narrow at me, full lips stretched into a tight line. Tall, menacing yet delectable, and, built like a brick shithouse. I can work with this, provided he hasn’t killed anyone. I’m good, but I know my limits.

“You need to follow me.”

I snort and turn back to my assistant Layna, who’s waving a fifty at the bartender as she flirts madly with her boobs. “I don’t think so.”

He steps closer, completely invading my space, his breath hot against my ear. “My boss has a message for you. He’s asked to speak to you privately.”

A dry laugh escapes my lips. “Well, if it’s so important, he can get off his ass and find me himself.”

“It doesn’t work that way, Ms. Carlson. You’re about to have a very big problem, and only one person can solve it. I suggest you follow me. If you don’t, your very lucrative client list will dissipate like a fart in the wind by sunrise. That’s a guarantee.”

****

Jeff

Her expression is stony and petulant. I can see it clearly from my vantage point in the back corner of the dimly lit lounge. Good. She’ll need to channel that anger and hostility pretty damned soon. Remo nods his head in my direction and she turns toward me, her eyes narrowed and lips pursed. I maintain a steady gaze, even though my eyes beg to rake over the luscious curves storming through the crowd. They are desperate to leer, but that’s not why I’m here.

I never make personal appearances for professional reasons. Ever.

But this situation requires an exception. Nothing will be left to chance, not this time.

Her tits bounce as she walks, high heels making her leg muscles flex with each step. The tight black dress wrapped around her body like Saran Wrap makes my cock twitch, and I grit my teeth. It’s gonna be a long night, and nothing about it is even remotely sexual.

Remo disappears like the good minion that he is, and Ariana Carlson stands in front of me, arms folded, accentuating the fact that she’s about to have a wardrobe malfunction if she squeezes her arms together any tighter. I can’t say I’d be sorry to see those tits up close and personal, but now’s not really the time. We’re on the clock, starting exactly thirty-seven minutes ago. I knew my nemesis would come out of his fucking hole sooner than later, and Ariana Carlson is the one person who can help me string up that bastard by the balls.

Finding her wasn’t much of a challenge, but convincing her that I’m not the enemy is going to take some finessing, something that doesn’t come naturally to me. Especially since that is exactly what I am.

“I don’t appreciate being summoned. Who the fuck do you think you are?”

I allow a smug grin to spread across my face. “I’m the one who got you over here despite that claim.”

Her mouth drops open and then quickly closes. “Make no mistake. I’m not intimidated by you or your thugs.”

“I’m aware of that. You’re here because you’re curious, and that’s good.” I pick up the half-full glass of scotch in front of me and swirl it around before taking a long sip. Impatience is creeping into her expression, and I know this cat and mouse shit isn’t going to work for much longer. “It might be better if you sit for this next part.”

“I’m fine right here.”

“I don’t think you want me to shout.”

She rolls her eyes and slams her hands on the table. A definite spark plug with a mouth that can spit fire. Fuck, that has so many possibilities…

“What makes you think I care?”

“Because if I mention a name that currently pays your firm $20,000 a month for representation, the same one who walked away with a very prestigious award tonight, it won’t bode well for you if anyone overhears why said name is in question.”

She sinks onto the leather bench, searing me with a glare that could slice through concrete. “Listen, you creepy mother fucker. I don’t know who the hell you are, but I’m about two seconds away from calling the cops. Don’t you dare try to dangle bullshit information in front of me and think I’ll give you the time of day!”

“Fair enough.” I pull out my iPhone and pick out one of the photos that I’d received. I hand it to her and watch the snark desert her body, deflating her with each second she stared at the image.

“How do I know this isn’t photoshopped?”

“Why hasn’t your client shown up yet? This is her after-party, isn’t it? Shouldn’t the hostess show up at some point?”

”She’s on her way.” Ariana’s shoulders are squared, voice strong and assured. But it’s her eyes that betray her. They flash a lot of fucking emotion, none of which includes certainty.

“On her way where, exactly? Because from the looks of these pictures, she’s not leaving her current location any time soon.”

She leans closer, dropping her voice, practically seething at me. Her perfumed scent wafts under my nose – sultry, spicy, and sexy as fuck. It momentarily clouds the issue at hand, and like some jackass, I allow it. I want to see the fire deep within this woman. She’s about to combust, and I want to be singed by the flames. “You think you’re the first jackass photographer who’s shown me a hacked up picture of a client and expected me to write a check for it? If you’re looking for a payoff, I’ll have my attorney so far up your ass, it’ll feel like a colonoscopy without the anesthesia. Fuck off.” She flips her hair, the smell of coconut whipping across my face, and slides away from me.

I grab her wrist and her head jerks backward, her eyes narrowed. “Take your hand off me.”

“I can’t let you go, Ariana.”

“The fuck you can’t.” She pulls her wrist away, but I keep my grip tight.

“I need your help.”

“What you need is a class that’ll teach you how to deal with people.” She yanks again, to no avail. Answers are what she wants, but she can’t have them. At least, not yet.

“Here’s the deal, Ari. If you walk away right now, you’re in for the biggest shitstorm you’ve never experienced in your professional career. This problem your client has wandered into will snowball very quickly, and unless we get in front of it, your reputation will go up in smoke by the time the first headline flashes on the morning news.”

“Let go of my arm,” she growls. I comply, partly to test her. Reading people comes pretty easily to me, and despite her bullshit I’ve-got-everything-under-control façade, I know she’s flipping the fuck out. And rightly so.

“Why should I trust you? I don’t even know your name.”

“Names aren’t important right now. And you should trust me because I’m the only one who can save the livelihood of your star client, America’s newest pop tart sweetheart, the one who’s on her knees right now with a dildo shoved up her skirt and a dick plugging her in the ass.”

<3 <3 <3

Summer Sizzle & A Gift Card Giveaway!

This summer has been super busy, and we’re only halfway through JULY!!! Yikes! So much to do, and never enough time to get it all done.

I’m really excited about my upcoming releases, Fatal Lies and Hard Time. Fatal Lies comes out in a few short weeks, and it’s my very first romantic suspense story. You can check out the first chapter on Wattpad by clicking here.

And Hard Time is the full saga of Ariana and Jeff, who made their sexy debut appearance in the Drunk In Love anthology to benefit St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital. I use the word saga because, at almost 70K words, it’s the longest book I’ve ever written. LOL!

So, to make sure you don’t miss a single update on theses releases, I’m hosting a GIVEAWAY!!!! Click here to enter! Multiple chances to win! The contest closes on July 20, and the winner will be notified by email.

 

Pre-Order & Massive Giveaway!!!

★★★ PRE-ORDER AND GIVEAWAY ★★★

Hot & Sinful Nights is now available for pre-order, and at 99 cents for 22 HOT romance novels you won’t want to miss!

To celebrate, the authors of Hot & Sinful Nights are giving away a $100 Amazon gift card, along with a one year subscription to PassionFlix! http://hotandsinfulnights.com/win/

Preorder On All Platforms!

iBooks ~ Amazon ~ Kobo ~ Barnes and Noble ~ Google Play

The curtains are drawn, and the sheets are rumpled…

Prepare to melt for 22 tales of lustful abandon that will fulfill your deepest, darkest, most secret desires on many HOT & SINFUL NIGHTS.

Inside, you’ll find over one million words of sexy and steamy romance! These wanton and wicked novels promise happily ever afters and enough heat to set more than your heart aflame with bikers, bad boys, fighters, dashing rogues, rock stars, athletes, doctors, billionaires, and more!

So go on…be a bad girl…and preorder your copy today!

Including stories from me and Alice Ward  |  USA Today bestselling author Barbara Devlin |  Ella Miles |  Courtney Hunt  |  Shyla Colt  |  Alyson Reynolds |  Ingrid Seymour  |  Jeanne St. James  |  USA Today bestselling author M. H. Soars  |  Award-Winning author Jenna Bayley-Burke  |  D.K. Combs  |  Sylvie Fox  |  Alexis Alvarez  |  USA Today bestselling author Amity Cross  |  Award-Winning author Katalina Leon  |  Award-Winning author Holly Dodd  |  Ashelyn Drake  |  Kacey Shea  |  Lena Bourne  |  Deliaria Davis  |  Award-Winning author Marie Long

Small Wins, Books, and Booze

Some days, it’s all about the small wins. By themselves, they don’t seem like much. But when you get a bunch of them done within the few hours you have allotted to work before the afternoon crazy train barrels through the house, you feel like you’ve reached the pinnacle of productivity.

I had that feeling today. It was good.

That’s why I’m drinking wine right now.

What did I do that was so worthy of midweek alcohol?

Well, first (literally, it happened at 6:15 AM), I finished another scene for a Hanukkah romance I’m writing for the holidays. It’s  a rom com, and I’m loving it so far! I also love that I’m over 2K words in, and it’s only June.

Then, I decided to finally try the new formatting software Terry bought me…four months ago. I have a book to format, so I figured now was as good a time as any to give it a shot. Of course, I needed to call on a friend to help me figure out a few things, but guess what? The book is FORMATTED and ready to publish!

Score!

I also figured out a pretty critical scene in the book I’m working on right now, a romantic suspense called Hard Time. SWOONY!!! Wait until you see the cover! I’m actually pretty anxious to see it myself, but I digress… This is the story of Jeff and Ariana, who first made a sweltering appearance in Drunk In Love, the St. Jude’s anthology that I coordinated with Jesey Newman of Schmexy Girl Book Blog. And their book is so fantastic. I know it’s probably bad form to admit that, but I don’t care. It rocks!

All in all? Today was success with a capital S. Laundry? Done! Housecleaning? Done! Researching Instagram analytics? Done!

Okay, time to get back to studying for finals, the other big reason for midweek wine. =)

Productivity ROCKS!!!!!

So, what have I been up to lately???

LOTS!!! And I love it!!!

On the Homefront…

Today, I tackled one-half of a monster job – cleaning out our playroom closet. Trust me, it doesn’t even look that good right now, but it’s a 200% improvement from the way it looked this morning. I only had enough time to get one side done, so guess what my job is tomorrow???

 

 

 

The pic on the left is how it looked before I gave up for the day…the one on the right just shows you that we can probably clean all the toilets on the East Coast with the supplies we have on the bottom shelf. =)

 

 

On the Writing Front…

For the past month and a half, I’ve done 30 minute writing sprints every day. Chris Fox says, in his book 5,000 Words Per Hour, my word count per minute will continue to improve as I practice, and he was RIGHT!!! I get up early, eat that frog, and do my first sprint. It’s usually 500-600 words for the first one, but at 6AM and barely any caffeine in me, it’s the best I can do. My word count increases with each additional sprint. You know, as my brain wakes up. LOL.

But today, I did 3 30-minute sprints and got 2,000 words out! Now, since I’m not super prolific, I consider this to be a major accomplishment. So, YAY!!!

I also have a bunch of projects in progress. I finished my first real hard-core romantic suspense, called Fatal Lies, recently, which will release in the fall. And, for those of you who read about Jeff and Ariana in my short story Sex, Lies, and Wedding Bells (as seen in the Drunk In Love anthology for St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital), get ready for Hard Time, coming in August!

Click on the title links above if you want to add them to your TBR on Goodreads!!!

And that’s not all…

I’m also working on another romantic suspense called Screwed By The Mob that’s due out this July, a Kindle Worlds novella scheduled for release in October, and I’ve plotted a holiday romance as well!

My dance card is officially FULL for 2017, but I am loving every sweet, sexy, and suspenseful minute! <3

 

It’s Cover Reveal Day…Giveaway Time!!!

drunklove_ebook_lowres

Cover Design: Jena Brignola
Release Date: March 13th

Synopsis

A glittering diamond, the promise of forever, and the hope that your future in-laws will move to a galaxy far, far away…sounds like a decadent recipe for eternal happiness, doesn’t it? All girls dream about their wedding day, fantasize about each and every gooey-delicious detail. It’s so easy to get scooped by the champagne bubbles and swallowed by our dreams.

But we all know the magical path toward happily ever after is not always sprinkled with pixie dust. Sometimes, we stumble over our plans for a perfect future and choke on the words promising forever. We watch the path take a defiant turn away from our blissful paradise because everybody has secrets, and skeletons, and fears.

And sometimes, being drunk in love isn’t always enough.

 

This is a collection of twenty romantic short stories that will make you laugh, cry & swoon featuring twenty trendsetting romance authors with 100% of all digital proceeds being donated to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Authors participating in this worthwhile effort: Amy Daws, AM Johnson, Melissa Collins, Carey Heywood, Elle Brooks, Isabelle Richards, Jeannine Colette, JD Hollyfield, Liv Morris, Meghan Quinn, Kandi Steiner, Mariah Dietz, Tori Madison, AD Justice, Kristen Luciani, MD Saperstein, Ryan Ringbloom, MJ Fields, Kathryn Andrews & Katy Regnery

Goodreads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33799670-drunk-in-love

Pre-Order Links

Amazon ~ iBooks ~ Kobo ~ B&N

Giveaway

$25 Amazon Gift Card

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Direct Link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/5c281a3d41/ 

Connect with the Authors

Amy Daws: www.amydawsauthor.com

AM Johnson: http://amjohnsonauthor.com

Melissa Collins: Melissacollinsauthor.com

Carey Heywood: www.careyheywood.com

Elle Brooks: www.ellebrooksauthor.com

Isabelle Richards: www.isabellerichards.net

Jeannine Colette: www.jeanninecolette.com

JD Hollyfield: authorjdhollyfield.com

Liv Morris: www.livmorris.com

Meghan Quinn: authormeghanquinn.com

Kandi Steiner: www.kandisteiner.com

Mariah Dietz: www.mariahdietz.com

Tori Madison: https://www.facebook.com/ToriMadisonAuthor

AD Justice: www.authoradjustice.com

Kristen Luciani: kristenluciani.com

MD Saperstein: www.AuthorMDS.com

Ryan Ringbloom: http://www.ryanringbloom.com

MJ Fields: www.mjfieldsbooks.com

Kathryn Andrews: www.kandrewsauthor.com

Katy Regnery: www.katyregnery.com

new-dil-teaser

Charity Anthology for St. Jude’s & Special Giveaway!

`*•.¸(`*•.¸(`*•.¸★¸.•*´)¸.•*´)¸.•*´

★★ SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT & GIVEAWAY! ★★

¸.•*´(¸.•*´(¸.•*´★`*•.¸)`*•.¸)`*•.¸

Schmexy Girl Book Blog and I are so proud to be working with 20 amazing authors to bring you Drunk In Love, a charity anthology! The idea for this anthology came up over lunch almost a year ago. Since then, Jesey Newman, one of the founders of Schmexy Girl, and I have been working on organizing and planning this grand event! We handpicked our talented authors and invited them to join us on this journey.

100% of the digital proceeds of Drunk In Love will be donated directly to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. This is a charity that is near and dear to all of our hearts and we have been working so hard to bring this to all of you! Without further delay, here are some of the details of this wonderful project!

Cover Reveal – February 13, 2017

Release Day – March 13, 2017

**Bloggers sign up HERE**

Synopsis

A glittering diamond, the promise of forever, and the hope that your future in-laws will move to a galaxy far, far away…sounds like a decadent recipe for eternal happiness, doesn’t it? All girls dream about their wedding day, fantasize about each and every gooey-delicious detail. It’s so easy to get scooped by the champagne bubbles and swallowed by our dreams. But we all know the magical path toward happily ever after is not always sprinkled with pixie dust. Sometimes, we stumble over our plans for a perfect future and choke on the words promising forever. We watch the path take a defiant turn away from our blissful paradise because everybody has secrets, and skeletons, and fears.

And sometimes, being drunk in love isn’t always enough.

What Authors Are Participating?

Amy Daws, AM Johnson, Melissa Collins, Carey Heywood, Elle Brooks, Isabelle Richards, Jeannine Colette, JD Hollyfield, Liv Morris, Meghan Quinn, Kandi Steiner, Mariah Dietz, Tori Madison, AD Justice, Kristen Luciani, MD Saperstein, Ryan Ringbloom, MJ Fields, Kathryn Andrews & Katy Regnery

Where can you get it? Available for pre-order at these retailers…

Add to Goodreads

GIVEAWAY

Please help us spread the word about this fabulous announcement!!! Comment on and then share our Facebook post (click HERE) on your Facebook and Twitter accounts, using #DrunkInLove for your chance to win a $20 Amazon gift card!!!
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