Thursday, March 31, 2011

Thank You!!

Big hugs to Katalina Leon, Julia Barrett, Tina Donahue, Amber Skyze and Afton Locke for helping me promote Pampering Jessica, and a heartfelt thank you to all who commented on the various sites I visited yesterday!

Kat, you are the best blog-sitter, ever! I so appreciate you stepping in for me!

March has become a very significant month in my publishing life. My first book, Ageless Desires released in March 2009. Possessing Eleanor released in March 2010, and spent months as a best seller on multiple sites.

Pampering Jessica is by far the most personal story I’ve ever written. Creating David and Jessica’s fictional story helped me come to terms with so much in my own life.

Have a wonderful weekend~


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Tessie Bradford's "Pampering Jessica"

Today I want to celebrate the release of Tessie Bradford’s latest book from Resplendence Publishing “Pampering Jessica”. Here’s the first taste!

David has been planning Jessica’s birthday weekend for months. His wife of almost twenty five years is having issues with turning fifty and he vows to do everything in his power to remind her how incredible she is and how much he loves her.  

Jessica’s birthday wish is to spend quality alone time with the man of her dreams, her husband. When David presents her with a gold gift bag full of sensual surprises, Jessica is more than eager to enjoy every one of them. What she doesn’t realize is that her husband has much more in store for her special celebration.

Now its time for the “Pampering Jessica” mini-review, allow me to whet your appetite for this terrific book.

I loved this book for so many reasons. First, I fell in love with Jessica and could clearly relate to her feelings. Jessica is well written as a very real woman with strong passions and a few familiar insecurities. She is bravely facing the world on the eve of her fiftieth birthday as a mature woman, but she’s also a girl at heart that can still enjoy a little erotic playtime. She has anxiety about turning fifty and David —hero of heroes makes her milestone birthday an enviable event to cherish. Every married man should read this book. As the story builds and Jessica is able to relax and receive all the love and attention David wants to lavish on her, I just about melted.

Second, I fell in love with David, who is simply a dream man of sexy understanding who knows exactly how to make Jessica, and the reader feel loved. Together Jessica and David take a little trip down memory lane and fan the embers that brought them together twenty-five years ago. This is grown-up but sizzling romance and I loved every page of it. The surprises that were planned and the experiences shared are the things of real life we should all be enjoying more often.

I strongly recommended “Pampering Jessica” to romance readers of all ages because this is a true Happily Ever After story that has a lot to teach about real love and romance. Better yet if you’re in a partnership, buy this book, climb into bed with your mate and read it together! “Pamper Jessica” is about living in the moment, being appreciative and loving who you are today. In my opinion this is Tessie Bradford’s most romantic book to date. If you love real life romance you don’t want to miss it!

 Tessie even consented to an interview…

Katalina: I absolutely loved this story and I know there are a few interesting facts associated with it. Personally, I think “Pampering Jessica” is an incredibly romantic book. What was the main inspiration for “Pampering Jessica”?

TB: Thank you, Kat! I had loads of inspiration for this story. I turned the big five-o in December, and was having some issues regarding that milestone. I wrote this book as a birthday present to myself. Also, both Jessica and I have two grown children, and have been married for almost twenty-five years to men who went out of their way to remind us how special we are at any age. Actually, I was so inspired that I wrote the book in twenty-two days! 

Katalina: I was so excited for you! I know that’s a speed record for a Bradford book. “Pampering Jessica” is a really special book on many levels. From the first page “Pampering Jessica” is lots of straightforward romance and fun that feels good to read. This is such a sweet, joyful book. What do you most want to share with your readers?

TB: This story is a peek into the life of a happily married couple. I wanted to celebrate the fact that years together, trust and maturity enhance the sexual relationship. I love reading and writing books that remind us hotty hot goodness is enjoyed by adults of all ages!

Katalina: I agree! Let it be shouted throughout the land “Hotty hot goodness is for adults of all ages!” I think this story will definitely resonant with readers of all ages. What woman doesn’t love surprises, romance and a little pampering? As a long-married woman tell me what the biggest benefits of marriage are to you?

TB:  It’s beyond wonderful to be able to be myself. As every couple who are together for a long time, hubby and I have weathered a number of challenges and are closer than ever because of them. We are best friends.

Now before anyone rolls their eyes and harrumphs, my marriage ain’t perfect! Just the other night, when we were ‘discussing’ an issue at the top of our lungs, I reminded him that if we’d dated more than once before shacking up and getting married seven weeks later, we might have realized we didn’t see eye to eye on certain things!! Oh well, that’s a story for another day!  

Katalina: You don’t always see eye to eye with your husband? How shocking! lol. You do have many years together and a lot to be proud of. What’s the sweetest surprise your husband has ever shared with you?

TB: I’m a bit of a micro-manager. I embrace having a plan, over-thinking things and worrying to the point of crazy, so hubby knows that big surprises are not the best way to go!! He continues to surprise me with insightful, subtle acts of love and kindness. The excerpt I selected for this post is a real example.

Katalina: Do you show or read your work to your husband? How involved is he in the writing process?

TB: He heads my Research and Development Department!!! Seriously, he is involved in every aspect of the process. Together we flesh out characters, plot, emotions, dialog and many times, physics! He listens patiently when I babble on about minutia, and talks me off the ledge when I experience my requisite meltdown over meeting a deadline and whether my work is worthy of publication.

Katalina: The man’s an erotic-romance saint! Do you have any surprises on the horizon that you can share with us today?

TB: It continues to surprise me when I actually finish another book! I’m currently working on two that I think have some promise.

Katalina: Tessie, I love what you do and I’m posting an excerpt to prove my point:

                       Pampering Jessica
                                   Copyright: Tessie Bradford, 2011

A little flutter of anticipation danced in her tummy when Jessica pulled into the driveway and parked behind David’s truck. She was early—it was only a little after five o’clock. “This is a good sign.” Jesse hopped out of the car and hurried up the front steps. She opened the door and froze with only one foot in the house.
“Happy day before your birthday.”
Her jaw dropped as she tried to take everything in. A vase full of red roses sat on the coffee table next to two glasses and a bottle of champagne in an ice bucket. Soft music was playing. The scent of her favorite pine cleaning liquid wafted through the air, and the carpet had obviously been vacuumed. David stood in the doorway of the kitchen, barefooted, in a black T-shirt and faded jeans, a towel in one hand and a bottle of window cleaner in the other.
“What?” he asked. His ruggedly handsome face lit up with a mischievous grin. 
“You’ve never looked more handsome to me,” she giggled. “Give me a sec to enjoy the picture.”
“If you’d been here a half an hour ago, you’d have found me on my hands and knees on the kitchen floor.”
Jesse closed the door and dropped her purse on the side table without taking her eyes off of David.
“Ooo, yeah baby, tell me more.” She practically ran across the room. David put down his cleaning supplies and gathered her close when she threw her arms around his neck.
“There’s not a speck of dust on any surface.” He gently squeezed her ass cheeks. “The refrigerator has been cleaned out.” He shifted his hips forward. “Dinner is in the oven.” When he flexed forward, Jesse moaned.
“You took time off to do this for me?”
“We both live here, and I’m well aware that I haven’t been helping much lately, and I’m sorry, Jesse.” The stark emotion reflected in his eyes warmed her to her toes.
“Kiss me, you sexy cleaning man, you.” He cradled her head and took possession of her mouth. He nipped and teased before sliding his tongue slowly past her lips to do wonderfully decadent things to her. Desire raced through Jesse as she met him stroke for stroke and rubbed herself against him wantonly. They were both gasping when David lifted his head.
“Keep it up, woman, and we’ll be on the squeaky clean kitchen floor.”

Tessie Bradford’s “Pampering Jessica” is available today through Resplendence Publishing! Pamper yourself and buy this beautiful book!


The One Who Got Away

I’m halfway thru writing a new book about two lovers who were torn apart by parents who didn’t think they belonged together at such a young age. Now ten years later that flame is still burning bright and they’re heating up the dressing rooms, rugs and possibly the sheets. Not sure if they’ll ever make it to a bed. ;) I’ve never written the lost love story and I’m kinda liking it. I hadn’t been thinking about the one who got away when I started this story, but as I’m writing it I’m beginning to wonder what became of my first true love. So much so I looked for him on Facebook. I couldn’t help myself I was curious what he looked like 25 years later. I didn’t find him. I’m not sure what I would’ve done if I had. Probably nothing because I don’t have a Facebook account! LOL How about you…have you ever thought about a lost lover or the one who got away? Time for me to get back to writing Looking Thru the Glass.

Monday, March 28, 2011

4th in my best-selling Regency series debuts Wednesday

THE BASTARD'S PASSIONATE PRIZE comes out 3.30.11. ! This is the last of the STANHOPE CHALLENGE series, which has led 3 best-seller lists for more than 9 months. 9. months.
HAPPY SNOOPY DANCING that so many like these books.
This story was a challenge to write.
Mark Stanhope is a clipper ship owner out of Baltimore, the bastard of the Stanhope clan, and he is impressed by the British into their Navy just before the War of 1812. I had to do A LOT of research about impressment, release, and of course, I had to add Barbary pirates!
Of course, he and his stowaway are captured. And of course, since this is erotica, the pirates have dastardly things in mind, donchaknow.
How to save our heroine's virtue?
How to remain a noble hero?
How to prove to her family (nobility of course) that he is worthy of her?
How to build her so that she can endure all that and come out heroic herself?
Do come see!
Wednesday at and soon to be elsewhere, too, one would expect.
A nibble for you?
NOTICE HERE for readers: This story includes, among other things, M/M/F and F/F exhibitionism.
A taste?
(Copyright 2011, Cerise DeLand. All rights reserved.)
This scene occurs in a Barbary pirate's castle on the coast of north Africa, 1811.

"Another procession now came through the far door. This time, two caretakers, aged maids from the seraglio, led in two younger women. These last were clothed in kaftans of red and gold brocade. In the center of the room, they paused, bowed to the pasha and gave him a salaam, then held out their arms. Their elderly maids rushed forward, unclasped the hooks on their garments, and viola!

The men gasped in pleasure.

The two young women were completely naked.

Sirena sucked in air. Save for rings on their fingers and toes and strands of pearls threaded into their waist-length raven hair, these girls were nude. Polished, their dark olive skin glowed in the brilliant refractions of the sunlight on the alabaster tiles. Gracefully, aware of their power to enflame to lust, they strolled the perimeter of the room, dangerously close to the men who watched them with covetous eyes.

Sirena was left now to wonder if she was to perform the same promenade. Yet, no one spoke to her. All eyes, all attention went to the two women who strolled now to the center of the room, stood upon the smaller couch and pillows, then sank down gracefully to the silken bed.

Close enough to see the two women’s expressions, Sirena gasped at the smiles they gave each other. One rose on her hands and knees, the other rolled to her back. Like a beast of prey, the first woman crawled over the second, a feral grin of domination spreading her plush red lips. The one on her back spread wide her legs, her mound cleanly shaven, smooth, glistening with moisture that could have come only from inside her.

Sirena reared back. They were to make love to each other. How could that be?

Yet it was true. The woman on her back, Sirena could well see from this angle, bore a tattoo on one inner thigh. Her mate, the dominant one, reached down to her cunny to stroke her seam with one long index finger. The men in the crowd shuffled. One moaned.

The dominant woman arched, her firm buttocks in the air, then she bent and put her mouth to the woman beneath her. The two of them gave themselves up to the pleasures, the one licking and sucking. The other, grabbing up handfuls of purple silk, twisting in her euphoria.

Sirena felt her own body gush in appreciation of the two. She shifted, pushing her thighs together to stop the throb that had begun and made her wish for Mark to ease the hurt. But the two women had no inclination to cease their pleasure, nor did the men on the sidelines. Some of them stood as the dominant woman bit the dark pebbling nipples of her partner. Some men slumped in their chairs, their hands to their groins, or leaned toward the women for a better view. Meanwhile, from beneath the shallow bedding, the dominant woman produced an ivory rod. Perhaps six inches in length, the implement made some in the audience laugh, a few applaud, other gasp, but most flared their nostrils and growled. The houri held it aloft for all to view like a prize, a promise. This ivory rod, Sirena could now see, was shaped like a penis. A marvelous stiff, thick cock.

Sirena licked her lips. It was just like Mark’s."

Friday, March 25, 2011

Happy Friday!

Good Morning!

I think I'll stick with just the facts today, besides, I know you're looking forward to your weekend. Hope your weather is better than ours out here in Northern California. Waiting for the flash flood to float us away!

Rosalie Lario has interviewed me. It should be up sometime this morning. Please stop by and chat! I love to see you!

Exciting news! Pushing Her Boundaries is available in print and for Kindle! Yay! For $3.99 it's a major bargain and a cheap way to spend an afternoon!

Come hang out with me - today I'm discussing movie popcorn and the tempest in a teapot over the lack of nutrients in movie theater food. As if I was expecting nutritional value? Tell me what you think. I always want to hear what people think about the food police!

Happy Elite Eight!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

A Woman's Secret World.

This weekend I was visiting Tina Donahue’s wonderful blog:
Tina asked the question many of us ask all the time— why is it so hard for Romance authors to get a little respect?

This is the answer I posted on Tina’s blog:

“I always want to ask the nay-sayers of romantic fiction—If ‘romance’ is so cheesy, easy and unimportant, then why do so many romance novels get dog-eared at the best parts, treasured, hidden in night stands for years on end and stolen from libraries? Romance novels are part of a woman's secret world and that's what is viewed as unimportant—how sad.”
This is what I want to talk about just a little bit more—A woman’s secret world.

Speaking for myself, I really need and cherish this secret space. I love picking up a good book, or my e-reader and escaping into a favorite fantasy or theme. Some days I can only spare fifteen minutes but I do it wholeheartedly because this is something I’ve loved to do since I was a teen and it makes me feel whole. I need to be reminded now and then that a world of imagination is waiting beyond the long list of “practical” things that must be accomplished.

Funny thing is I’ve read a lot of critically acclaimed fiction and non-fiction best sellers that bored me to tears. I’ve also bought a lot of little known romance novels from tiny presses that clung to my thoughts for years. A few of those novels were full of flaws, but it didn’t matter.

What made the reading experiences so different? Emotion. The romance novels sunk in at a deeper level because they were written with emotion. The author’s attention to emotional detail triggered my compassion and drew me in. When a book carries a lot of emotion it pulls the reader into its world and little flaws can be easily over-looked because the book provides such a strong and satisfying experience. Emotion is what bonds a reader to a book.

We all need a little entertainment, escape, emotional release and a glimpse beyond the borders of our private reality. Romance novels do that in spades. I have a lot of love and respect for the many wonderful romance authors, both living and dead who have brought a spark to my day, thank you.


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

This and That

A few weeks ago I announced that my hubby and I were expecting a bundle of joy in August. Since I learned of the pregnancy I’ve been trying to complete as many wips as I can so once the baby arrives I have some time to adjust to a new schedule.
Anyone who knows me knows I’m a creature of habit. Change is difficult for me and I also love my sleep. :o) This means I’m not sure when I’ll get back to my writing.
In the midst of all this I learned that a magazine where I’m a regular contributor will be ceasing publication in a few months. The income wasn’t huge, but it was nice to have the extra cash. Now I need to find a replacement.
I’ve been trying to branch out to new places in my fiction and non fiction. Being a freelance writer I’ve learned to never have all your eggs in one basket. You just never know when the publisher will go under. Do I think that will happen with some of my publishers – NO. I’m just saying I’m not foolish to believe it’s not possible. We’ve all witnessed the economic horrors the last few years.
Currently I contribute to six blogs. Some weekly and some monthly. Something’s going to have to change there too. I’m just not sure where. I’m also finding I need to find more time to promote. I have new releases March, April and May. I just learned of the March release less than a week ago and it will be available from Ellora’s Cave on Friday. THIS Friday.
So if my posts are sparse you’ll understand I’m getting things prepared for August.

In the meantime here is a taste of Just Another Rainy Night available March 25th.

Tired of their ho-hum sex life, Jack decides to spice things up. He plans a surprise for his wife. After sending the children off for an overnight with their aunt, Jack handcuffs Beth to their bed.

Beth awakes naked, blindfolded and at the mercy of her husband. The day starts off with being fed by Jack and quickly turns into hot and heavy sex. She soon learns that a slip of the tongue can lead to stinging ass cheeks.

This rainy day will be spent pushing their sexual limits. Whether in the bed, the corner, or in front of the fireplace, Jack will leave Beth begging for more—until she says something unforgiveable.


Copyright © AMBER SKYZE, 2011
All Rights Reserved, Ellora's Cave Publishing, Inc.
Chapter One

“Rise and shine, sleepyhead.”
Beth opened her eyes to total darkness. She attempted to move, but found her arms were pulled above her head. Around her delicate wrists was soft fur. She tugged and the rattling sound of chains filled her ears. She was restrained. Fear spread throughout her body and into her throat.
“Why am I handcuffed?” As she tried to sit up she realized she was also blindfolded. Never in their fifteen years of marriage had she woken to find herself possessed like a slave or prisoner.
The smell of bacon wafted closer, assaulting her nostrils.
“I’m going to fuck that pussy all day long.”
Beth moved her head to the left where Jack’s voice echoed through the room. She shivered. The thought of him fucking her all day sent chills down her spine, until reality came crashing back.
“What about the kids? Surely they’ll want Mom to cook them breakfast and drive them all over God’s creation.”
“All taken care of. I just sent them packing with Auntie. They’ll be home tomorrow bright and early.”
How long had she’d slept? She knew she was exhausted when she fell into bed the night before, but to sleep through the kids waking and Jack shackling her to the bed wasn’t like her.
“Did you spike my drink last night, Jack?”
A full belly laugh filled the room.
“I’d hardly do something so sinister.”
He had a point. In all their marriage he’d never even spoken an ill word against her. Why should she accuse him of something so hideous?
“How did you manage to handcuff me to the bed?”
“You were snoring peacefully. I moved your arms without getting a peep out of you. You barely stirred.”
Beth racked her brains trying to remember any feeling of being moved around, but nothing came to mind.
“Clever Jack, now uncuff me please.”
“No can do.”
“Huh? Please Jack. My arms can only take so much of being stretched like this. I’d like you to release me, now.”
“Remember your prisoner fantasy?”
How could she forget? She’d told him about the fantasy eons ago. They’d been enjoying a glass of white wine on a cold winter’s night. They’d nestled all cozy in front of the fireplace. As they gazed into the glowing embers, she had shared her deepest darkest desires. Beth had told him how she wanted to feel like she’d been kidnapped, taken away and tortured in every delicious way imaginable. Jack had listened quietly and nodded at the appropriate times. She’d explained that she pictured herself in the shower, after a long day. A stranger would appear and pull her soaking wet from the jet stream. He’d carry her to her bedroom where he’d take what he wanted. He’d ignore her pleas for him to stop. He’d fuck her until they were both sated.
She’d thought he’d forgotten by now. Obviously he had been biding his time.
“Is this what is happening today? You’re living out my fantasy?” A slight shiver passed through her body. Jack had listened. He’d taken her seriously and decided to give her what she needed.
“We are and I’m in control. You will do as I say or suffer the consequences.”
Beth shook as a chill of delight filled her. Jack’s voice was deep and demanding. He was using his dominant tone.
“Got it.” A secret smile filled her soul.

Monday, March 21, 2011


LADY RAMSEY'S RIBALD CHOICES is a free read included in the back of the book, LADY FEATHERSTONE'S FERVENT AFFAIR.
LADY FEATHERSTONE is the 2nd in my STANHOPE CHALLENGE series, which has been in the top 10 best-sellers on 3 different sites for more than 8 months! (yeah. you read that right. 8 months. 3 lists.)
Color me tickled.
So. You need a nibble of Lady Ramsey's story, don't you? After all, she is a part of the Stanhope clan, their half sister, in fact.
Copyright 2010, Cerise DeLand. All rights reserved.
Here you go:

At twenty-eight, Lady Ramsey had the distinct privilege of possessing her two deceased husbands’ fortunes, a house in Grosvenor Square, two in the country and a set of race horses who had served as stud to so many mares that she had begun to hire them out to service her neighbors’ breeding programs.

Just before the demise of her second husband, she had broached a novel idea with the old roué. To her surprise, he agreed that for her excellent service to him and his appetites for her cunny and her breasts, she should secure some kind of continued joy for herself after his passing. She did not want to breed. No, no. But she did wish to enjoy herself before she lost her lustrous blonde looks and healthy buxom body. Thus the old man had immediately set about interviewing and hiring staff who would aid her in her quest.

With one butler and his assistant, plus a male cook who also served as man-of-all-work, her masculine household’s uniqueness was noted by the ton. Indeed, her household became a notorious topic and a bane to her more conventional half-brothers, Adam, Wes and Jack Stanhope.

But she told herself she could not care overmuch. Her dear brothers were not exactly paragons of sexual virtue and in fact, lived up the demands of the males in the family that they be accomplished lovers. She, too, was a Stanhope, after all, and could flaunt convention as her ancestors had. True, too, she was also a by-blow of the eighth earl, Lord John, and thus not only on the other side of the blanket but entitled to act like it if she wished. And she did sincerely wish. Plus, like her brothers, she would never find happiness in love or marriage. She was a victim of the family curse that damned all love affairs within the family bounds. So why then should she not give herself what happiness she might take?

Thus tonight, after burying her husband in July and allowing herself two more months to train and be trained by her new staff, Clarice shivered in anticipation of her initiation into a new world of carnal delights. A world described to her by her butler and his assistant. A world she craved for the lonely days of her existence. For if love was not her destiny, if marriage an impossibility and a prison of its own making, if children not her goal, then pleasure would be.

Tonight was her first evening. She trembled deliciously as she rose from her bathtub, stepped over the porcelain rim to the floor and allowed her butler to wrap her naked body in a heated bath towel.

“Thank you, Robert,” she smiled at the man whom her husband had hired for her to embark on the search for her own ecstasies. She adored the man’s luscious swarthy looks, the breadth of his shoulders, the bulk of his arms and his experience as a colonel in the Iberian Campaign. A colleague of her brother Wes, Robert had acquired a leg wound that left him with a slight limp.

“Madam,” he said in homage with that baritone she felt stroke her spine in velvet tones. “You may want to use the French lavender perfume this evening.”

“Really?” she admired his sculpted mouth and allowed her praise to emanate from her eyes. “Where would you suggest I apply it tonight?” she asked. He always had ideas that titillated her senses.

“For the Baron DeVere, I would say the hollow of your breasts.” His voice rumbled as his umber gaze traveled from one areola to the other and sank to the valley between.

“And for Lord Landover?” she asked, recalling that Robert and Landover were childhood friends.

“The hollow between your buttocks.” Robert’s hell-dark gaze locked on hers.

“He likes a woman’s nether place, does he?” she pressed her thighs together as cream flooded her cunny at the prospect.

“Very much. He can show you the joys of it like no other man. You are prepared for this?” he asked, his muscular arms embracing her as he circled and ran his hands down her backbone to cup her cheeks, define the cleft between them, and press inside her asshole with one long index finger.

“I am.”

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Crazy Horse portrait Courtesy of Lakota online

I am pleased to announce that I'm over halfway to the final chapter of my latest. I've managed to stay on track this past week, and should have it ready to sub by end of month. Whew! I never thought I could get my muse back, but she is alive and well as of this date, and I am feeding her large quantities o chocolate to keep her happy.

It's pretty scary to not be able to write a single word for months on end, I'll tell you!  I want to thank all of you for your kind support. I don't think I could have managed it without your encouragement.  :)

Fran Lee

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Afton Locke is Here!!

Dark closet + sexy boss + 7 minutes = too HOT to stop!
Wanna play 7 Minutes in Heaven?

Releases March 16th!

Ever had a fantasy about your boss? 'Fess up. We all have.

Despite Eliza Worth’s attraction to her boss, Zach Taunton, she’s so fed up with his unreasonable demands she’s decided to look for another job. Her matchmaking friend Margo, determined to give Eliza some sexual healing for her work stress, invites her to a singles mixer, where Eliza reluctantly agrees to play a game of Seven Minutes in Heaven. In a dark closet, Eliza is quickly brought to the edge and beyond by a sexy mystery man. Her initial intrigue quickly turns to horror when she discovers her masterful, anonymous lover is none other than her slave-driving boss himself—and Zach seems to want her for a lot longer than seven minutes. But first he’ll have to relinquish some control and negotiate his way into her heart.

Watch the Video

Seven Minutes of Seduction
ISBN# 978-14199-32977
Ellora's Cave Publishing

Afton Locke

Excerpt (Adult)
(Copyright © AFTON LOCKE, 2011, All Rights Reserved, Ellora's Cave Publishing, Inc.)

Her breath caught when she realized the room wasn’t just dark. It was completely black. She couldn’t see a thing now. Margo must have had special padding or weather-stripping installed around the edges of the door.

“You’re not allowed to talk, starting now,” Margo said, her voice muffled.

Eliza fought down the urge to pound on the door and beg to be let out but knew that would make her resemble a childish idiot. Not being able to see and knowing nothing about who was in the closet with her sent her heart rate into the aerobic range.

Her other senses soon took over. She heard the rustle of curtain, a man’s breathing and…oh God. That was Zach’s cologne. The distinctive blend of exotic spices and understated class had distracted her mid-task more than once at work.

Coincidence, she told herself as she clasped her hand across her throat. Lots of men wore the same cologne. He couldn’t possibly be here.

This man, whoever he was, didn’t seem nearly as inclined to pause and analyze the situation as she did. She gasped when a questing hand brushed her waist and arm, followed much too quickly by two steely arms fastening around her. Goose bumps exploded across her arms as rolled-up shirtsleeves and very hot forearms slid across her skin.

A pair of lips found her ear with uncanny precision and slashed across it, sliding into a jagged path down her neck. Beard stubble—another reminder of Zach—scraped her skin, sending dual sensations of alarm and pleasure shooting down her spine.

With her arms all but pinned to her sides, she could do nothing but slide her hands around the man’s waist. His body was hot and muscular under her fingers. Muscles flexed beneath the soft shirt as he maneuvered her to stand against a row of shelves. The delicate scent of laundered sheets mingled with his cologne, reminding her of beds.

She turned her chin toward his mouth, needing to taste him. Suddenly his hands anchored both sides of her face, holding her in place for a kiss. No, not a kiss—an onslaught. He skimmed her lips with his tongue before biting, tasting and teasing. Without even knowing exactly how, she found herself slack-jawed and senseless, wanting everything he had to give.

He tasted like wine, with a slight salty tang, as if he’d eaten caviar. While he claimed her tongue with punishing swirls of his own, his legs pressed hard against her, his cock even harder, bruising the delicate flesh over her pubic bone through their clothing.

“One minute has passed.”

The automated voice nearly made Eliza jump out of her skin. Margo had thought of everything.
The sensation of tugging at her blouse brought her attention to her breasts. Her blouse went slack and threatened to fall off when he unbuttoned the few large buttons. Needing and aching, her nipples anticipated strong fingers or a hot, flicking tongue.

At the same time, alarms went off in her head. Exactly how far did people go in this game? Surely seven minutes wasn’t enough time to go all the way but she was at his mercy, whatever he planned.

If this man fucked her in the dark, she wouldn’t even see his cock. She would only be able to feel it, thrusting into her drenched pussy.

“Wait, I—” she uttered.
Whew, Afton, that's one smokin' hot excerpt!! Thanks for stopping by today!
Have a great weekend, everyone~

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Blurb or Blub?

I can't believe it's not Blurber.

Sadly, this blog has nothing to do with Fabio...

Writing blurbs for me is a struggle. I find the task almost painful. It just doesn’t come naturally to me while others seem to do it with ease.

I recently asked this question on a writer’s loop “When shopping for books, what do you look for in a blurb?”

I heard many interesting answers but not the specific answers I was hoping for.

Most of us grab a book based on a familiar name or an eye-catching cover, but ten seconds later we are flipping the book over in our hands, or scrolling downward if we are shopping on-line, to read the blurb.

This is the crucial make-it or break-it point in the possible sale of the book.

Does the blurb tell us what we are hoping to hear? Readers are quick to pass judgment on a potential buy.

We all have to ask ourselves is this book, my idea of a good time and worth the money and mental energy to consume?

An author is often limited to 180 words or less in a blurb, so I would like to ask as a reader what are you looking for in a blurb? 

Are you looking for content, sub-genres, assurance of a happy ending, or key words or themes such as Master, kidnapped, bondage or bride?

What words are most compelling in a blurb to assure a reader they’re getting the type of book they want?

Judging a book by its blurb can easily go wrong…

Sometimes a blurb can be too good. I’ve read a few terrific blurbs that were obviously written by someone in marketing that had not actually read the book because the blurb had little to do with the actual story. Too bad for me. I've often wished the person who wrote the blurb had also written the book. 

It’s very disappointing when all you like about a book is the blurb. How many times can you re-read the blurb? No one enjoys getting stuck with a book that was misrepresented by its cover or blurb.

Another author asked me. What about excerpts? Shouldn’t a juicy well-written excerpt sell the book?

Yes, in theory a good excerpt should be the ultimate weapon of seduction but the trouble with depending on an excerpt to make the lasting impression is that in a book store or on–line, often the first thing a customer is offered is the book’s cover and blurb. If the cover and blurb don't immediately grab a reader's attention-they’ll never move forward to reading the excerpt.

So what’s up with 180 word blurbs and why is this so difficult for me?

When you're book shopping which words attracts your attention and what warns you away from a book?

I would love to hear your thoughts on this.


PS Happy slightly belated birthday Fabio, you're still fabulous!

New Cover Art - I Haz It

Today I'm sharing my yummy new cover for Just Another Rainy Day. I had a lot of fun writing the story of Jack and Beth. They're a married couple who have let sex become boring and quick. That is until Jack plans a rainy day with his wife while his daughters are visiting with their auntie.

Beth wakes up handcuffed to the bed and things are only gonna get hotter.

I don't have a release date for this yet, but I'll be sure to share with you when it becomes available!

Monday, March 14, 2011

I don't usually critique, but...GAD, she said, sadly.

Today, I am going to discuss a book I recently bought by a NYT Top 10 best-selling author of Regencies.
The first thing that caught my eye and my mind was this phrase, "Blah Blah Blah," she said feelingly.
Later on, Our Heroine does things HOPEFULLY.
She wrings her hands. A LOT.
She likes Our Hero, yearns for him, finds him dangerous, always has, but feels attached to her dead fiance. Say What?
Where was this editor? Are all this author's books like this? Gad. She said. Hopefully. Feelingly. I hope not.
Too bad. I buy A Lot of books. Hundreds of dollars each year. I even spring for hardcovers. But write poorly and I am gone. Never to return.
The sub-plot of a ghost in the house (which did not serve the purpose of challenging the character of the heroine or hero) only added to my feeling that the author was adrift for how to make her 80,000 words and the use of adverbs made me feel as though I was reading a first draft.
I will never go back to her works.
Do you have pet peeves about how authors write?

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Happy Saturday!

I've been reading all my own books lately...

Just to see if I can drum up more interest in writing. It's been quite a while since I wrote them, and as I read, I am thinking to myself, "Wow!  I like this!  Who wrote this?"

Oh, duh!  It truly amazes me that I actually wrote some decent books last year and the year before that.  Now if I could just write another few...

I am working on another Native American hero, but it is slow going. I hope that I will have another 5k by St. Paddy's Day.  I get too bogged down in Facebook and other stuff, and have to drag myself back to work.  Too bad I have to work on my computer. Too much temptation to play hooky and play ll those neat games!

Oh, well....

Fran Lee

Friday, March 11, 2011

So here I am...

late again!

Sorry! Fridays are tough for me because my husband works from home so we hike together with the puppy. And Blogger hates my ass - it will not let me schedule in advance no matter how hard I try to get it right.
What's new? Not much - still working on the paranormal and then I will focus on the romantic suspense.
I received a funny/interesting rejection from a publisher who requested copies of all my books. "Read them all. Loved them! Great writing! Wonderful style! Best of luck with your career!" I guess that's called letting me down softly.
Don't you love the photo? It's taken from one of my favorite trails. This is why I love Northern California so much in the winter. The landscape turns into a fairytale.
Have a happy weekend all. I won't be here next Friday unless I can figure out how to schedule my post. Eye surgery...scary...

Thursday, March 10, 2011

He Did What????

The other day I was enjoying a quiet afternoon reading a book by a ‘new-to-me’ author. The hero was beyond yummy, the heroine a woman I know I would be friends with if she were real. The chemistry between them sizzled, and the story was exciting.

I was more than three quarters of the way through, excited that the h/h had found their way back to each other and that they were expressing their joy in a steamy, naked fashion! Up to this point, the love scenes had been extremely well-written, a great blend of emotion and inventiveness.

For purposes of this discussion, let’s name the heroine Bitsy, and the hero Stryker – why? Because I want to!

Now close your eyes and picture this. Bitsy is lying on her back. Stryker is surging into her with powerful thrusts and plundering her mouth with fiery kisses. While “still buried deep in her welcoming pussy”, he leans down to kiss around the jeweled ring in her belly button.

What??????????????? Does this man have no spinal cord? Is his penis three feet long? Is he a performer with Cirque Du Soleil??

I figured I must have missed something, skipped a sentence, so I re-read the preceding paragraphs, but nope, there was great detail about how tightly they were connected, etc. And this contortionist move was not simply one sentence. The scene was in Bitsy’s POV, and the entire paragraph was devoted to all of the stimulation she was receiving from Stryker’s talented tongue and plundering manhood at the same time!!!

I’m not sure I’m going to be able to finish this book.
Have a great weekend~

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Steamy Cindy Spencer Pape!

Today I proudly present a special guest Cindy Spencer Pape. Cindy’s a very talented, prolific author and a wonderful friend to meet on the loops. She’s written Regency, Sci-fi, shape shifters, westerns, and all manner of fantasy genres. She does all of it well, and I predict she’ll soon be known as the author to go to in the Steampunk genre.

What’s Steampunk?

I know you’ve already heard of it. Steampunk has been around for a long while and to make a bad pun Steampunk is building up a strong head of steam! It’s definitely a trend on the rise like a hot air dirigible and I love it.

So what is Steampunk? The stock answer to anyone who asks is “It’s like the ‘Wild Wild West’, at least that was the answer I was repeatedly given when I first started asking about Steampunk years ago and the answer told me absolutely nothing!

I was so frustrated. I didn’t know what they meant. Were they talking about the Wild, Wild West TV show or the Mel Gibson, Jodie Foster re-make? (How strange was that pairing?) and what was it about either show that made it Steampunk? For a long time I just didn’t get it.

Then I started noticing Steampunk at Renaissance fairs. All of a sudden these wonderful stovepipe hats, coat and tails and leather strapped goggles started showing up at the fairs incorporated into the costumes. People started looking like characters from a Dickens’ novel. The Steampunkers had no cares at all about mixing time periods—in fact they encouraged it. 

I found it refreshing. I even went wild and bought myself a bustle.

Then, Steampunk worked its way into movie theaters. Hugh Jackman’s “Van Helsing” is a wonderful example of a Steampunk revisionist tale with its James Bond-like armory full of monster fighting weapons such as automatic crossbows and many other gadgets that did not exist in the fictional Van Helsing’s time. 

Robert Downey Jr.’s Sherlock Holmes is another recent Steampunk tale.

Then it hit me—Steampunk is the willful act of handing our favorite heroes and heroines of the past the tools, technologies and philosophies they never possessed and letting them explore their world using some of our modern gadgets and knowledge. Viola!

I realized Steampunk comfortably occupies a world and mindset that never existed but should have. It’s a reality that marches to it’s own drummer.

Many great authors of the late Victorian age were so far ahead of their time they actually saw the future. I’m thinking of Jules Verne. Verne’s accuracy of the century yet to come was uncanny. He either had a great mind with a strong trend toward science and decided to write fiction instead, or he was a prophet. His vision was crystal clear.

H G Wells is similar in his untimely descriptions of how alienating the coming world wars would be. 

Bram Stoker the creator of Dracula and Van Helsing was very modern in his style of writing and included many new fangled devices in his book, including telegraphs as a plot device, blood transfusions and young ladies sitting down at the typewriter to compose personal letters—all novel elements and shocking for their day.

Perhaps the most famous of all is Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s—Sherlock Holmes. The way the stories are written sets the tone for every forensic and analytic crime novel to come—it’s amazing stuff.

So why is Steampunk important? Because we are living in strange times and the future is unknowable but a few brave authors /visionaries are holding up a curved mirror named Steampunk, that can look into our past. Possibly by an act of sympathetic magic, in looking back we can catch glimpse of our future or at the very least see a few lovely or interesting things worth going back for.

So when you hear the word “Steampunk” think visionary, futurist, humanist. Think of Jules Verne and the other great minds that chose to use entertainment as a means to inspire and hint at all that is possible for humanity.

Now I would like to introduce you to Cindy Spencer Pape’s latest release “The Gaslight Chronicles, Steam and Sorcery” available now from Carina Press. 
It’s already getting rave reviews! Enjoy.
XXOO Katalina Leon


I want to thank the scribes for having me here today and letting me share the fun. To celebrate the new release, I’m running a contest. Comment on any (or all) of the blogs I visit on my blog tour this week. One entry per person, per blog stop. You can visit my blog to find the other stops. After the final stop on Sunday, March 13, I’ll draw one winner for a free download of Steam & Sorcery, or their choice of my other available titles. Happy Reading!


Steam & Sorcery
Gaslight Chronicles #1
By Cindy Spencer Pape
Available from Carina Press

Sir Merrick Hadrian hunts monsters, both human and supernatural. A Knight of the Order of the Round Table, his use of magick and the technologies of steam power have made him both respected and feared. But his considerable skills are useless in the face of his greatest challenge, guardianship of five unusual children. At a loss, Merrick enlists the aid of a governess.

Miss Caroline Bristol is reluctant to work for a bachelor but she needs a position, and these former street children touch her heart. While she tends to break any mechanical device she touches, it never occurs to her that she might be something more than human. All she knows is that Merrick is the most dangerously attractive man she’s ever met—and out of reach for a mere governess.

When conspiracy threatens to blur the distinction between humans and monsters, Caroline and Merrick must join forces, and the fate of humanity hinges upon their combined skills of steam and sorcery…

Excerpt: ADULT

He glowered. “You work for me, remember? I said no.”

“I’ll resign, if that’s what it takes.” She wouldn’t of course. Leaving those children was unthinkable.

“If you resign, I won’t be your employer.”


Triumph sang in his slow, smug smile. “So then I can do this.” His action was so swift she barely saw him move before he’d dragged her up onto the desk, scattering books and papers left and right as her skirts slid across the polished surface. At the end, she knelt at the far edge of the desk with him standing in front of her, so close she could hear his heartbeat.

Caroline squeaked. That was all the sound she could get out before his lips came down on hers. Immediately, she stopped fighting him and wound her arms around his neck, kissing him back. When he slipped his tongue along her lips, she opened for him. She’d read about this, imagined it, but neither had done justice to the sensation of being crushed against Merrick’s chest while his mouth plundered hers.

Her entire body responded to his touch—even her stomach cramped with some kind of need. His hair slid through her fingers, thick and silky, while her other hand pressed against the broad strength of his back. Even through waistcoat and shirt, he radiated warmth. Sliding her hand down his back, feeling the shape of his muscular form, was too much temptation to resist.

His hands weren’t idle either. One cupped the back of her head, holding her in place. The other roamed up and down her spine, then around to settle on her hip before slipping inside her dressing gown to caress her through nothing more than the thin cotton of her nightgown. Instinctively she shifted to the side, allowing him more room to explore, even as she trailed her own fingers down past his belt. The muscles of his bum were every bit as solid as those of his shoulders, and she dug her fingers into the firm flesh through his woolen trousers.

Merrick’s gasp urged her on, even as his hand moved up under her robe to the side of her breast, which felt heavy and tender, almost bruised, but somehow soothed by the glide of his palm. He nibbled at her lips, then slid his mouth down to the column of her throat, and she instinctively arched her neck. The movement put her breast more firmly into his hand and he squeezed lightly, which only made her yearn for more. When his thumb rasped along her nipple and he nipped the tendon at the base of her neck, she let out a broken cry.

Caroline wasn’t a fool—she knew where this was leading. She simply didn’t want it to end. For the first time in her life, she was willing to go where her emotions led. Her fingers trembled as she opened the buttons on his waistcoat and pulled his shirt free of his waistband. Then her hands were there, under his shirt, touching bare, warm flesh, even as he rolled her nipple between fingers and thumb.

She needed to be closer. Scooting forward on the desk, she sat back on her heels so she could widen her knees, allowing Merrick to stand with his hips between them, so she effectively straddled his thighs. When had he untied her dressing gown and pushed it open? Now only his trousers and her flimsy nightgown separated them, making his desire more than obvious where it pressed into her stomach. One of his hands still tormented her breast, while the other made quick work of the buttons at the neck of her nightgown. As soon as it was open, his lips trailed downward, skating across her collarbone, then down into the valley of her sternum before he ran the tip of his tongue around her breast. Finally, he lightly licked her aching nipple.

“Oh!” She arched her back, pressing herself even closer, as if begging for more—embarrassing, but probably true.

Merrick seemed to understand. His lips closed around the sensitive bud and he drew it into the wet heat of his mouth, dragging a moan from deep in Caroline’s throat.

Then she felt his other hand sliding up her thigh—under the hem of her nightgown. His fingertips were callused and rasped slightly on her skin, but his touch was exquisitely gentle. She could do little more than grip what part of him she could reach—his waist with one hand, a shoulder with the other, and spread her knees just a little wider as his hand approached her core.

“Christ, Caro,” he muttered. He pulled his mouth away from her nipple and kissed a line to the center of her chest, speaking a word or two between each kiss. “So lovely. So responsive. So bloody damn tempting.”

Social Medias

A long time ago I was a member of MySpace. I closed my account months ago and frankly I don’t miss it one bit. I don’t believe it picked up any new readers because of my sight…but I could be wrong.
I have so many things that are a time suck to me that take time away from writing and editing I have to ask – are the medias like FaceBook, MySpace and Twitter worth the time?
I attended a few workshops over the last year that claimed that twitter was a must have for writers. I came home excited and ready to sign up. I didn’t. why? Because to me it seems like a waste of precious time.
I have friends and family who spend all day long on Face Book. They all beg me to get an account. I’ve fought it for over a year now. At first it was because I was being stubborn because they wouldn’t stop harassing me, now it’s just one of those things I’m not feeling.
Give me your take. Do you find any of these social medias a benefit to your career as a writer or are they just what I perceive them to be – a time suck?

Monday, March 7, 2011

Butter, milk, cheese and eggs--goodbye to all that?

Trying to cut down on fat and get to the gym more often.
Yeah, we all do this.
Now, doc tells me I have asthma! HUH? Then my son who is a nutrition expert, says why not give up diary to cut the production of mucus.
WOW. For a gal who loves yogurt, organic chocolate milk, cheeses and butter, this is tough!
This morning Hubbie persuaded me to try dark chocolate almond milk. NOT BAD. And it has 45% Calcium and that means it is 15% higher than my other milk. But how to eat my granola in the mornings without my yogurt?
Meanwhile, guy above? I will not be cutting out any consumption of good photography. No calories in that.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Ah...another Saturday!

And I have missed my second deadline...blech!

I am SOOO disgusted with myself.  I have found no inspiration at all this last week.  I wrote about 2,000 words all last month.  Sigh.

I have not even surfaced to post on my blogs. And little good that has done me.  I write a chapter, then I read it over, and dump it.  So much for my muse coming back.

Ah, well...I will keep slogging onward.  Wish me luck.

Fran Lee

Friday, March 4, 2011

Coming out of hibernation...

...with an announcement!

Some of you know that my contemporary romance, Pushing Her Boundaries, was released by Siren on February 21. It's currently number 14 on their bestseller list! Go! Buy! Read! Enjoy!

To celebrate, I'm holding a mega-contest on my site -
Tweet This!

Stop by Friday through Sunday, tweet my contest to your friends and followers and suggest that they tweet the contest. I'll have a grand prize, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd prizes. You can win books, Amazon gift certificates, name it. So, drop by my website: and follow the instructions. Good luck!

I certainly can't forget my friends over at SSS!

I will be resuming my Friday posts.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Heating Things Up

This winter seems as if it will never end. I’m so tired of snow and ice and frigid temperatures! Here’s a scene from Treasuring Evie that takes place on a steamy July night.

Copyright © TESSIE BRADFORD, 2010
All Rights Reserved, Ellora's Cave Publishing, Inc.

“How long are you in town?” She tried for casual.

“I plan on being here for the foreseeable future, Evie.”

“Really. Foreseeable, huh?” The urge to not give a damn, to break her own rule and let this man do whatever he wanted to her even if he was leaving town tonight was so consuming that her head swam with the effort to continue the conversation. “I’m sure you’ll have a relaxing vacation while you’re here. Did you rent a cottage or are you staying in one of the hotels?”

“I moved into my new home a couple of weeks ago, Evelyn, right there across the lake.” Matt wrapped his strong hands around her shoulders, turned her toward the water and brought her back tightly against him. “Howdy, neighbor,” he whispered against her ear.

“You’re going to live here year-round?”

“Absolutely.” When he started dropping featherlight kisses down her neck, Evie let her head lean back against his shoulder and her hands reach around to rest on his hips. “I thought being able to leave the rat race behind and spend my days fishing and enjoying nature was my dream come true, but right now, I’m trying to figure out what I’ve done right in my life to cause the powers that be to bring me to this little town, to the sexiest, most alluring woman I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting.” When he flexed his hips, his erection brushed along the top of her ass. Evie whimpered when his fingers went underneath her top and slowly trailed up her rib cage to rest beneath her breasts.

“What are you doing to me?” she asked almost desperately. She covered his hands through the material.

“Worshipping your body, honey.” He cupped her fullness and squeezed gently. “You are so beautiful.” He ran his tongue across her bare shoulder. “And we fit together so perfectly.”

“But we don’t know each other and I don’t…” Evie was terrified that he was going to think that she behaved this way normally, but every fiber of her being wanted to be with this man. She helped him knead her breasts, encouraging him to use more pressure.

He pinched her nipples once and then pulled her shirt over her head and tossed it to the ground. Not giving her a second to protest, he drew her to him by running his hands from her waist to the underside of her breasts and back again.

Despite late July heat and humidity, Evie shivered as goose bumps rose along her skin where he touched her. She closed her eyes and leaned into him. She marveled at the texture of his fingertips, and with their slight roughness, she knew this man worked with his hands. He caressed her with a unique combination of tenderness and strength, taking his time to explore her ribs, her bellybutton and the valley between her breasts.

“Kiss me, honey,” he breathed against her ear before turning her in his arms and drawing her close. He twined one hand through her hair, using a fistful of the damp curls to tilt her head back just so. His other hand rested firmly in the small of her back.

When his lips came down on hers, Evie was thankful for his support. Matt didn’t start slowly or cautiously. He claimed her mouth, possessed it. It seemed like the most natural thing in the world to surrender to his mastery. She wrapped her arms around his neck and kissed him back with enthusiasm.

Evie moaned desperately as Matt ran his hands down her back and cupped her ass cheeks almost roughly. He played with the soft globes as he plundered her mouth. Her pussy was on fire and when he pushed his thigh between hers at the perfect angle, she rubbed herself against him with wanton abandon.

“That’s it, baby,” he growled against her lips while guiding her to ride his leg. “Get yourself off on me. Rub your little clit hard, Evie.”

The pressure he was exerting and the rough texture of the denim on her ultra-sensitive bud sent her hips into overdrive. She latched back onto his mouth, driving her tongue deep. Matt grabbed one of her nipples and twisted it hard. It was exactly what she needed.

Evie exploded, bucking against him wildly. Something in her orgasm-clouded mind told her that he wouldn’t let her fall. She clawed at his back while experiencing the first sexual release that she had enjoyed with an actual man anywhere in the general vicinity for a very long time. But it still wasn’t enough. She laid her head down on his shoulder and struggled for breath but kept moving on his leg.

“You need more, don’t you, baby?” Matt bit her earlobe and then laved the pain away with a swift lick. “You need my cock buried deep in your pussy. You need to be fucked, Evie.”

“Yes, oh God, Matt, please!” She squealed as he pushed her shorts down over her hips while she struggled with shaking hands to pop the button of his jeans. He yanked his t-shirt over his head. Mild-mannered Evelyn Ashlyn didn’t exist anymore and she didn’t care in the least. Nothing mattered to her except getting this mystery man naked and inside her body. Every cell of her being cried out for him.
Anyone feeling warmer yet??
Have a great weekend~

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Cerise Deland, Desiree Holt, "Until Midnight"

What’s happens when you mix a really spicy Desiree Holt romance with Cerise Deland’s penchant for exciting locations and international intrigue?

You get “Until Midnight” which is a really steamy book that moves fast!

There’s a lot here to work with. The heroine Nicole Welles is the feisty owner of Nemesis Security and she has a big problem. Nemesis has just finished a brutal assignment rescuing a hostage from a Mexican drug cartel. During the rescue Nicole killed the drug lord’s brother.

Nicole desperately needs a little R&R and hopes to get some at a high-security tropical resort in Costalegre Mexico. 

On page one she is sunbathing in a teeny tiny bikini with her 9mm in a nearby beach tote when her relaxing vacation on the Mexican Riviera suddenly takes a hard left.

The story literally starts with a bang. Actually the “thunk” of the stunning Irish/ Israeli hero Adam Molloy’s “Desert Eagle” putting a bullet in Nicole’s would-be assassin. 

Adam steps out of the bushes after efficiently dispatching a man sent to kill Nicole and immodestly introduces himself as the man who saved her life.

Nicole is a woman used to taking care of herself but she responds strongly to Adam’s aggressive personality. 

After a brief but practical discussion about what should be done with the body, Adam, being a take-charge sort of man does the gentlemanly thing and disposes of the body for her.

She takes Adam back to her bungalow and offers him a drink as a reward. Sparks fly. He suggests she might want to return the favor by offering hot sex, right now in her bungalow.

Adam is just about the sexiest and most dangerous hero I’ve come across in quite awhile. His father was an IRA bomb maker and he’s a Mossad agent. He’s smart, well armed and lethal in bed. He travels with his gun and Israeli-intelligence gadgets and everything gets used to advantage in the story.
After reflecting on their current circumstances the two bond and become lovers, and it’s a good thing. It turns out, the man Adam killed on the beach works for the same drug cartel both have had past dealings with.

Nicole really needs Adam’s help and Adam needs a strong woman. Both discover they share a common enemy and dislike of injustice, and then things go boom. 

Their lives are threatened and two seemingly unrelated events lead back to the same drug lord who wants Nicole dead.

What I loved about “Until Midnight” was it’s genuine sense of intrigue and danger. Nicole and Adam have a serious problem to deal with that affects other people in their lives. 

The action is particularly well written and flies along. I loved the strong plot and all the details Deland and Holt added about the locations, weapons and cartels. Most of all I enjoyed seeing two strong people who have been alone in the world for so long, find each other and fall in love.

“Until Midnight” is the second book in the Nemesis series but it’s a strong standalone and can be enjoyed by itself. 
I highly recommend “Until Midnight”.

Cerise Deland, Desiree Holt, “Until Midnight” Ellora’s Cave Breathless Line.