Posts Tagged ‘erotic romance’

Sunday Snippet: Tempestuous Crossings

Tempestuous Crossings

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Blurb:

tempestuouscrossings_original-1-1Welcome to Draven?s Crossing, where fantasies and nightmares walk among us?

Vampire Mayor Draven desires mortal Rose. Her rebuffs excite him. When she finally gives in to his advances, their coming together is explosive, and their passion is more than he could?ve anticipated.

But a serial killer divides his attention. Can he keep his town safe from this mysterious menace and convince Rose that they belong together despite her reservations?

As a new resident of Draven’s Crossing, all Rose wants to do is her job. Draven could be a distraction she can’t afford, but she can’t ignore him or her arousal.

 

Excerpt:

“Yes. Drink me.” Her pussy rippled around his cock as she rocked her hips. Desire seared through her veins as the heat inside of her increased. She moaned, pressing her throat closer to his lips. “Please,” she pleaded. “Want it.”

Every cell in her body hummed for this moment. Draven’s hands massaged her breasts harder. His hips moved faster. He pressed a kiss over her pulse point.

Her heartbeat seemed to triple by that one act. She moved her hands up and gripped his hips, her nails digging into the skin. He growled low, the sound rough and dark as if it came from a shadowed place within him.

“Mine,” he whispered before biting down. Intense pain burst in the center of her chest. She released his hips and reached up to claw at his biceps as tears slipped down her cheeks. Her mouth dropped open in a wordless cry as the center of her world came down to that one act. The throbbing, pulsing ache turned into a hot thread of fire that burned through her, singeing her right down to her soul. The backs of her eyeballs felt hot. Her lips, fingertips and toes tingled. Fires exploded in small bursts through her body like fireworks. She shook as her cunt contracted.

Rose felt as if she balanced on a knife’s edge with darkness hovering just on the other side. The sensation of falling filled her as she screamed. Each tug of his lips pulled at something deep inside of her. He drank and drank and drank. The desire increased, multiplying tenfold until she sobbed. Their bodies continued to move. Her breasts slid against his chest. Electric strings shot straight to her core. Heat ebbed through her body as the orgasm welled up inside of her. The wave broke. She came on a cry, drowning in pleasure, pain, and darkness.

Draven released her neck and continued to thrust into her until he found his climax. Body straining, his cock thickened and pulsed inside of her as he came. He continued to thrust into her through it all. Rose collapsed on him, breathing hard. Her heart raced. She felt lightheaded. The edges of her vision became black.

“Rose?” Draven murmured. “Rose?”

“Hmm?” She lifted her head a small bit. It felt so heavy. It dropped back to his chest.

“Shit.” He struggled beneath her. She wasn’t sure why. It was so comfortable to lie there. Sleep tugged at her. Closing her eyes, she allowed herself to drift. The blackness closed in. Not afraid, she allowed it to cocoon her.

 

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Sizzling Saturday Snippet: Thawing Ava

Thawing Ava

USA Today Recommended

Blurb:

SE_ThawingAva_coverinHockey player Brice Douglas has never gotten over the Christmas he spent with Ava Johnson back in college. Now, years later, he’s in trouble with his team, the Witch Fields Prowlers. Desperate to keep their rabble-rousing player’s head in the game, they hire a babysitter to keep his ass out of a sling and home in his bed at night: Ava. He’s determined to make up for lost time, while convincing her he’s not the man the team made him out to be, using every dirty, sexy trick he can.

Ava just got out a relationship with a cheating fiancé. She needs time to rebuild her life and babysitting her old college crush maybe the answer to her prayers–so long as sex isn’t involved. Yet, with his sexy nightly self-pleauring sessions and dirty talk her resistance quickly starts wearing thin. With every day that passes, she’s growing more comfortable with him and his desire for her.

Will she be putting Brice on ice, or will he end up thawing Ava?

 

Excerpt:

She shifted in her seat and looked down at the counter. “Okay, deal. So are you too tired for…?” She wasn’t sure she wanted to finish that sentence.

“Say it, Ava,” Brice ordered.

Heat flared in her face and prickled along her ears. She licked her lips. “Um, are you too tired for what you promised me?”

Brice shook his head, and her heart sank. “Ava, be explicit. Tell me what you want.”

“Do you want to tie me down on the bed and use sex toys on me?” He hadn’t talked about vibrators and dildos, but she decided to throw that in there and see if he’d be put off. Brice had mentioned that he wanted to watch her masturbate, to see how she liked it, but this was putting her pleasure completely at his control.

The room grew hotter, and the fireplace wasn’t even on. She toyed with her phone. His gaze weighed on her, caressing the column of her neck, swirling around her breasts, and slipping down her stomach to whisper against her thickened labia. She could feel his fingertips ghosting over her flesh.

“Look at me, Ava.” Brice’s voice was deep, dark, hardened with command.

She met his gaze. “Yes?”

“I told you before you never have to feel ashamed with me over your desires and needs. You have to be honest with me and me with you. Now using sex toys on you—do you want me to use the ones I have, or do you want to use yours?”

He had sex toys? “Why would you have sex toys?”

He chuckled and replied, “I always wanted to be prepared in case I found a lover with my interests. If we came back here, which was rare, if ever, I’d be ready. Good enough explanation?” He moved around the counter.

She reached out and gave his hand a squeeze. “Yes, and thank you for not getting defensive with my asking.”

“Another Perry thing?” His eyes narrowed, and anger flared briefly before it disappeared to be replaced by an emotion she couldn’t identify.

She nodded. “Yes, but I want to move on from there, do things I was denied, and finally acknowledge and give in to my desires.”

He cupped her cheek and gave it a stroke before he stepped back. “Good. Just let me take a shower, okay? Marsh talked me into a workout while analyzing my games. I feel like I’ve pushed myself so hard that I’ll need some massage therapy tomorrow. Sex will help, though.” He gave her a kiss on her cheek, finished his slice, then went into the bathroom.

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Sunday Snippet

Draven’s Crossing: Tempestuous Crossings

tempestuouscrossings_original-1-1Blurb:

Welcome to Draven?s Crossing, where fantasies and nightmares walk among us?

Vampire Mayor Draven desires mortal Rose. Her rebuffs excite him. When she finally gives in to his advances, their coming together is explosive, and their passion is more than he could?ve anticipated.

But a serial killer divides his attention. Can he keep his town safe from this mysterious menace and convince Rose that they belong together despite her reservations?

As a new resident of Draven’s Crossing, all Rose wants to do is her job. Draven could be a distraction she can’t afford, but she can’t ignore him or her arousal.

 

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Snippet:

Desire slid a sharp finger down her spine, causing her to thrust out her chest. The ache between her legs intensified as the distance between her and Draven closed.

Ding.

The door slid open, and she found Draven standing there waiting for her. Dark hunger burned in his eyes. All she could do was whimper before he grabbed her arm and pulled her into an embrace. Stumbling off of the elevator, she went willingly and gave herself to his scent and heat once again. Something inside of her clicked, and she relaxed against him.

Draven buried his head in the crook of her neck and sighed. Moist breath fanned her skin. Goosebumps rose as her stomach dropped.

“I’ve missed you. Been thinking about you, waiting for this moment.” He sounded so tired, which worried her.

“What’s wrong?” Moving her body back a bit, she slipped the files under her arm and slid a free hand into his hair. Combing her fingers through his silken tresses, she smiled when he sighed at the touch. His hand pressed in the small of her back, urging her to move closer. No protests; she went with the guidance. A small moan began in her chest and moved up her throat when she felt the press of his erection against her stomach. He rocked against her and groaned aloud.

“It’s been a long day. Need to get you into the office before I drop to my knees and eat you out here in the hallway.” His hand slid over one cheek of her ass. As he squeezed, he drew another groan from her. Heat flooded her sex and spread outward.

“Draven,” she started.

He scraped his fangs down her neck. That one small touch burned her skin and sent tendrils of fire tingled at the base of her back.

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Fall Reads Friday: Lissa Matthews

Love and Tattoos

Love&Tattoos_wlogo_200x300_300dpiBlurb:

Once Brax traded in his suit and law degree for part ownership in his best friend’s tattoo parlor, Love and Tattoos, he never looked back. Inked from head to toe, full of business smarts, and an affinity for classical music and hard sex, he’s got life right where he wants it.

Until the woman he can’t stop craving comes home. She’s full of luscious curves, looks a little unsure of herself, and has taken to acting a little odd around him. Brax can’t help but wonder why.

The corporate advertising firm in Philadelphia that Annie buttoned up her carefree personality for has laid her off. Now, back in North Carolina, she’s trying to find her spark again. Her career is changing direction, her sex life is nearly dead, and the one thing worth having in the midst of it all is supposedly off limits.

Brax’s cockiness and Annie’s desire for him, dares her to believe he might know her better than she thinks. And when he promises that he can help her find what’s missing in her life, she agrees to his little after-hours game.

The challenge he lays before her comes with a few strings: the suggestion of stripping, confessions, and the temptation of ink. But, they’ve never been that close or seen eye to eye, so how could she possibly lose?

Buy Links: Amazon | All Romance eBooks | Barnes and Noble

R-rated read/Maybe an X-rated read in a few areas ;-)

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Awakened Desires Cover Reveal

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IMG_1078*Warning: For mature (18+) audiences only due to strong language, sexual situations and violence.*

Gunther Erikkson had a mission to complete – one that he was more than willing to see through. After he arrived in New York to intimidate Henry Daniels into doing his job, things began to change for Gunther. One woman had started to chip away at his icy heart. With the mission complete, he headed back to his home in Atlanta, but he was left with an unfamiliar ache in his chest.

The virus spread like wildfire and, within a week, it had reached Gunther. Undeterred, he began his journey to his predetermined destination. During his travels, he came across a woman who was moments from meeting her end, but Gunther rushed in and saved Quinn Landers’ life. After a sincere promise of protection, she decided to continue her travels with him.

The pain from the virus was creeping deep into his muscles and bones. With the lack of a blood source and his own life hanging in the balance, Gunther knew he needed to confess one of his biggest secrets to Quinn. The tightened web of lies began to loosen, awakening Gunther’s desires.

After dealing and learning to live with other survivors, bombings, and secrets, they continued to travel north. When they arrived at the destination, Henry was already waiting, thirsty for a battle.

Tragedy struck and it hit home for Gunther. Will he discover who he truly is? Do Gunther and Henry battle it out, or do they learn to get along and prepare for an epic showdown with a common foe?

IMG_1074Broken Dreams: book 1

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Broken-Dreams-Shattered-Lives-Book-ebook/dp/B00K02JWBG/ref=sr_1_3?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1398777732&sr=1-3&keywords=broken+dreams

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/broken-dreams-rissa-blakeley/1119354020?ean=2940149520671

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/broken-dreams-shattered-lives-book-one

Cover Designer: https://www.facebook.com/CoverItDesigns

Photog: http://www.photosbybrandie.com/

Model: https://www.facebook.com/DominicDasinger

Editor: https://www.facebook.com/KimsEditingServices2013

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OUT NOW! Bewitching the Vampire

OUT NOW from Etopia Press!

Flushed and Fevered 1: Bewitching the Vampire

Blurb:

BewitchingTheVampire-BySelenaIllyria-200x300A stubborn witch vs a vampire king…who will win on Halloween?

 

Bridget is a witch who has been given a sweet deal—nab a rogue vampire and score a big payday, but she must deliver him within twenty-four hours. She’ll need help from Joe, the local vampire liege, to find the rogue vampire fast. Joe agrees to give her the information…if she agrees to play a few hands of poker with him. For each hand, she must reveal a bit about herself. And for each hand she wins, he’ll answer any question she asks. But Bridget isn’t sure she can keep things objective—not when Joe gives her that seductive grin.

 

Joe has always had an interest in the little witch. She defies his expectations and surprises at every turn. But despite his natural inclination to help her, he decides to make her work for the information she needs in the most delicious ways. With a little bit of seduction and a little bit of bondage, he tests her resolve to play the game…and tests his own self-control to contain the blood beast inside him. The stakes are sky-high, for both of them. But on Halloween, the most powerful night of the year, which one will be the winner?

 

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Excerpt:

Bridget knew she’d made a mistake.

Joe led her into the room, pulled out her chair, and touched the small of her back as he pushed her seat forward. There had been no need for the touch, but she felt the electric shock through the layers of her leather jacket and her thin sweater. The current trailed lazily up and down her spine to buzz around her pussy and fill her body with heat and awareness. The tips of her ears burned and her face flushed. She licked her bottom lip and tried to focus on the danger that sat across from her.

Joe took his seat with easy grace, his features bathed in golden light from the overhead chandelier and the lit candelabras. Bridget took in the neatly groomed five o’clock shadow, his navy blue eyes outlined with dark lashes, the barbell piercing that cut through his thick right brow. Despite his undead status he had a light tan that only enhanced her fascination with him. Where the hell did vampires go to tan that wouldn’t cause them to burst into flames? She shoved away her question and focused on the silver studs in his ears. A smirk graced his mouth. She wondered what it was that he knew that made him smile that way?

She’d heard the rumors, knew the older vampires could read things in a single touch, even through layers of clothing. What he got from her she wasn’t sure and didn’t want to know, but that damn smirk seemed to mock her. Her body twitched with unused energy as the thrill of contact with him continued to circulate. Her blood buzzed with awareness and her skin tingled.

She licked her bottom lip again and fought to focus on something else, anything else. Her stare trailed from the red oak flooring to the framed posters of comic book covers, each one singed by author and artist. A pang of envy filled her as she spotted a Batman: Year One cover signed by Frank Miller. For a moment, she wondered what kind of security system he had and if she could sneak it out without him knowing.

His steady, unblinking gaze settled on her like a weight, making her hyperaware of just how tight her nipples were and just how long it had been since she’d gotten laid. This was why she went out of her way to avoid the living hell out of Joe. She knew nothing about him, but he managed to pull and tug at things deep in her body that she didn’t want to think about.

She focused on the bat-shaped bulbs of his chandelier and wondered what could compel him to buy something so ugly. It was at odds with the simplicity of the room.

Joe cleared his throat and Bridget turned her attention back to him. He still had that smirk on his lips. Her palm prickled with the urge to smack him and make him stop. At least her magic hadn’t been activated. “What?”

He shrugged. “Nothing.”

She gritted her teeth. “What?”

He picked up the cards and held them up. “Rules are simple. You win a round, I answer whatever question you ask; I win, you answer me. Deal?”

“That’s why I’m here.” She managed to get out, suppressing a growl.

He raised an eyebrow. “To play poker and enjoy the pleasure of my company?”

“For answers, asshole.”

He opened his mouth wide enough that she saw his tongue stud. She squirmed on her chair. She’d heard all the rumors about what men with that kind of tongue piercing could do. This was no time to think about that.

Joe chuckled, a dark sound that seemed to have nothing to do with poker and everything to do with sex. Did all vampires learn this laugh or was it just the old ones?

He dealt out the cards and settled back in his chair. Bridget picked up her cards and looked down, unsure whether or not she had a good hand. She had never played poker in her life. She figured two aces were good but what about two eights?

What the hell had she gotten herself into? Damn you, Fritz!

 

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Etopia Press

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ARe

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Sunday Snippet: Carnevale & Subterfuge

OUT NOW at Etopia Press!

CarnevaleAndSubterfuge_BySelenaIllyria-200x300Blurb:

If he can’t resist her, he’ll put her in danger…

On leave from her ship, Anarrae Lavender wants to indulge in her desires on Ill Doge. But a night on the town and one case of mistaken identity later, Anarrae finds herself in the arms of a charming and mysterious thief, having the hottest sexual encounter of her life. But who is that masked man with the talented hands who makes all her bondage fantasies come true? An when it’s over, how will she learn the identity of her lovable “Dodger?”

When Diego stops in at a pub for a drink he doesn’t expect to be mistaken for someone else. Intrigued by Ana, he kidnaps her for the evening and indulges her fantasies—and even some of his own. He doesn’t want it to be a one-night-stand, but his mission to protect the Ambassador from an assassin demands his complete anonymity. The assassin’s eyes are everywhere, and if he loses his focus again, he’ll endanger them all…

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Excerpt:

Diego was tired but his mind refused to shut off. Tomorrow was the last day for them. He would have to let her go. Sorrow lanced his heart. They had shared something special, and now he wasn’t sure which way was up or what day it was. All that mattered was this moment with her in his arms. “Goddess, help me but I think I could fall in love with her.”

He shook his head. He was going to have to talk to Roberto tomorrow. He would know what to do.

Finally, sleep took him. They slept for a few hours, only to have him wake her up again and again to make love. They paused only to eat, shower, and sleep. Diego didn’t care if they never left his flat. The world outside his door didn’t exist as far as he was concerned. All that mattered was spending as much time as he could with her.

That night, before they went to sleep, she’d ruined everything by thanking him for giving her such a memorable vacation. He’d wanted to argue, say something cruel to make her feel the pain that was slicing through his soul, but nothing came out. All he could do was say, “You’re welcome.” And he gave her a huge hug despite the fact that his heart was breaking.

When they went to bed later that night, he couldn’t sleep. All he could do was hold her and pray that he could stay away from her while onboard the ship. If he failed, there was no telling what would happen to them.

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All Romance ebooks
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Sunday Snippet: Carnevale and Subterfuge

OUT NOW at Etopia Press!

CarnevaleAndSubterfuge_BySelenaIllyria-200x300Blurb:

If he can’t resist her, he’ll put her in danger…

On leave from her ship, Anarrae Lavender wants to indulge in her desires on Ill Doge. But a night on the town and one case of mistaken identity later, Anarrae finds herself in the arms of a charming and mysterious thief, having the hottest sexual encounter of her life. But who is that masked man with the talented hands who makes all her bondage fantasies come true? An when it’s over, how will she learn the identity of her lovable “Dodger?”

When Diego stops in at a pub for a drink he doesn’t expect to be mistaken for someone else. Intrigued by Ana, he kidnaps her for the evening and indulges her fantasies—and even some of his own. He doesn’t want it to be a one-night-stand, but his mission to protect the Ambassador from an assassin demands his complete anonymity. The assassin’s eyes are everywhere, and if he loses his focus again, he’ll endanger them all…

 

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(Rated PG-13 Excerpt)

Excerpt:

Normally she liked to know more about her lovers, but this was supposed to have been a fantasy weekend, not form-a-connection-with-a-stranger weekend. She blew out a breath and looked around. One more day in this amazing place was all she had. The scent of coffee and incense perfumed the air in an odd mix that both soothed and energized. Ana couldn’t wait to see this world through his eyes. She was pretty sure they’d miss all the tourist traps and go straight to the gems.

As the people passed by the café, Ana sipped her coffee. Something inside her unwound. She felt more relaxed than she’d ever known. On the ship, there was always tension until she went to bed at night. Once she got up it started all over again. Here, right now, she could breathe and be herself with someone who seemed to care and who actually saw her. She just wished there weren’t so many things standing in the way. Captain Drogan would have little humor if he found out she’d willingly spent her weekend with a known criminal.

What would it be like to be with him always? To actually form a relationship with him? She pushed those thoughts away. The fact that she trusted him didn’t mean anything. Besides, all they had was attraction. That was it. Could one build a relationship with just that? She didn’t want to think about it anymore.

Ana finished off her coffee and waved over the waiter. After paying the bill she sat, unable to decide what to do. Dodger was still talking to that man. Part of her wanted to just go, to just leave this place and disappear into the crowd. The more time she spent with him, the harder it would be to forget him when it came time to leave. She did want to get the tour of the places the locals hung at, but not if that meant tearing up when they parted come nightfall. That’s exactly what she knew would happen.

After a bit of wavering, she made her decision and scribbled out a quick lie on the napkin about having been called back to the ship early. She thanked him for the wonderful time. Then Anarrae flagged down the waiter and asked that the napkin be given to Dodger five minutes after she left. She stood up and slipped into the crowd hoping, praying, that he wouldn’t come after her.

When ten minutes passed and she didn’t hear him calling after her, relief swept through her, but on the heels of that feeling an ache took residence in her chest and she wasn’t sure why. She told herself that it was only a weekend, nothing more.

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Summer Read Saturday

DrifterCoverAllie Jenson has drifted from one pack to another, ever since her family died. She thinks she might have finally found a home with the Ashton Grove pack, but her life is not easy. She has a job she hates, and none of the males want her for more than sex – not that she’s giving it up. When were-tiger Cain Boudreaux takes it upon himself to “save” her from a handsy customer, by claiming her in front of their packmates no less, things get a little out of hand. He’s rude, chauvinistic, and totally not her type. Well, maybe he’s not completely not her type. He does have that tall, dark, and sexy thing going on. And that Cajun accent slides across her skin like warm silk. But what in the heck is she going to do with a man who thinks her place is barefoot and in the kitchen?

Thank you for stopping by, Cain. Would you take a moment to tell us a little about yourself?
I’m from the great state of Louisiana – gator country. Must say, there’s nothing tastier than a gator-kabob. Just thinking about it makes me miss Momma’s cooking. I have one sister, who is mated with cubs. Both of my parents are still living in the same house where I grew up. When I heard the call for assistance in Ashton Grove, I was all too happy to help. It was time for me to move on and try to find my mate.
Can you tell us about your friends or love interests within the pack?
I’ve dated a little bit, but nothing serious. Tiger’s a little different from wolves. There’s an instant connection between us and our mates, as if we’re struck my lightning when we see them the first time. I’ve got my eye on an obstinate woman who loves to argue with me.
My newest friend in the pack is the angel Adriel. Of course, he’s not an angel now. Just plain ol’ human. Doesn’t seem to bother his mate Kinley though. Those two are so crazy about each other you seldom see one without the other.
Interesting. Can you tell us a little about this woman?
Allie is…different. She’s sassy and has the smartest mouth I’ve ever heard. She’s sarcastic and isn’t afraid to stand up to anyone. As much as her sassiness drives me nuts, it’s also kinda cute. One thing’s for sure, I’ve never met a more independent woman.
Sounds like she’d be quite a handful. Well, I hope things work out for you, Cain. Thank you for stopping by and chatting with me!

EXCERPT
“You just claimed me in front of the pack, asshole.”
He glanced around and shrugged. “We’ll get it cleared up at the next pack meeting. I wasn’t going to stand back and watch that ass hat harass you. You’re welcome, by the way.”
“Ohhh,” she growled, stomping her foot. “You think you can just clear it up at the next get together? What about until then? You just declared me off limits to every guy I know.”
“You mean there were some you hadn’t dated yet?”
“I’ve gone out with exactly three wolves,” she said through gritted teeth. “That’s hardly the whole pack. Can you say the same? Weren’t you out with Jenny just the other day?”
“It wasn’t a date,” he said, taking a sip of his beer. “We were just hanging out – as friends.”
“Whatever. If I’ve lost my tip because of you, I’m charging you double for your beer.”

About the Author

Jessica lives in a world where warlocks, shapeshifters and fairies exist, and everyone deserves a happy ending — from tragic vampires finally finding love after centuries of being alone, to super hunky womanizing werewolves finding their destined mate –- it’s all in a day’s work.
Unable to find a werewolf of her very own, she decided to marry someone who thinks he’s one -– minus howling at the full moon, fleas, and a rousing game of chase-the-mailman. Okay, so he sometimes howls at the full moon.
When she isn’t writing, Jessica enjoys spending time with her family, reading (mostly romance), or going to the beach. She’s especially fond of bookstores and Starbucks!

You can find Jessica at these places:
Website – www.jessicacoultersmith.com
Blog – http://jessicacoultersmith.wordpress.com
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/pages/Jessica-Coulter-Smith/106513059928
Twitter – @kitcatjms

Snippet Sunday: Carnevale & Subterfuge

OUT NOW at Etopia Press!

CarnevaleAndSubterfuge_BySelenaIllyria-200x300Blurb:

If he can’t resist her, he’ll put her in danger…

On leave from her ship, Anarrae Lavender wants to indulge in her desires on Ill Doge. But a night on the town and one case of mistaken identity later, Anarrae finds herself in the arms of a charming and mysterious thief, having the hottest sexual encounter of her life. But who is that masked man with the talented hands who makes all her bondage fantasies come true? An when it’s over, how will she learn the identity of her lovable “Dodger?”

When Diego stops in at a pub for a drink he doesn’t expect to be mistaken for someone else. Intrigued by Ana, he kidnaps her for the evening and indulges her fantasies—and even some of his own. He doesn’t want it to be a one-night-stand, but his mission to protect the Ambassador from an assassin demands his complete anonymity. The assassin’s eyes are everywhere, and if he loses his focus again, he’ll endanger them all…

 

Buy Links:

 

 

(Rated R Excerpt)

Excerpt:

The beauty’s voice, soft and sweet, edged in huskiness, only enflamed him, and it had been so long since someone had caught his attention like that. A soft fire burned through his veins.

Screw it.

He paid for his drink and left the bar in search of her, despite the fact that he had a job to do. He hated the thought of some other man spending the night in her bed. The only problem he could see was whether or not she’d be interested in what he had to offer.

At first the crowd obscured his view of his prey. He looked left and then right. All he saw were masked revelers celebrating the planet’s annual Carnevale festivities. Frustration made him clench his jaw. He waded into the crowd of people, cursing himself for not going after her as soon as she’d left. There were too many people. With a sigh, he went around the side of the building into an alleyway, ignoring a couple currently fucking against the worn brick face.

Diego brought his wrist up to his mouth. “AI, show me all the hotels within a five mile radius.”

He lowered his arm and watched the mini device search its database.

“Closest hotel is two blocks away,” the AI’s soft female voice replied. “San Marco. Go west.”

“Thank you, AI. Send a message to my appointment that I will be late,” Diego ordered. He refused to say he wouldn’t be there.

“As you wish.” The machine automatically went into sleep mode, and he headed west. It didn’t take him long to come to one of the gaudy new metallic hotels that had been built by the nuovi ricchi of the city, who had wanted to modernize everything. He shook his head and went inside.

Diego made a beeline for the front desk. Once there he cursed himself. He didn’t know her name. The receptionist tuned to him, expectation on her face. Which approach should he use?

“Good evening, love. I’m new to the city and am in need of directions. I’m looking for the Il Grifone gardens? I’m hoping you could help me.” He gave her his most winning smile and watched as she grinned back at him. Her overly large violet eyes turned to her computer console and she typed in a few things. Frown lines creased her brow as she continued to type.

“I’m sorry, sir, I don’t see anything with that name.”

“Please,” he pleaded. “I must find this place. My grandmother, the Universe rest her soul…it was her favorite place in all of Il Doge. She asked me to see it for her and gaze up at the double moons on Carnevale night. She claimed it would bring me luck in love.” He knew he was laying it on a bit thick, but an honorable grandson worked better than a horny man.

The receptionist’s gaze softened. “I shall do whatever I need to do. Excuse me while I go check with my boss.”

Diego nodded and watched her retreat through the office door. That would keep her busy for quite some time, since there was no such place as the Il Grifone gardens. With a big grin, he rushed around the large counter. “AI, give the security team something to keep them busy. I’ll hack into the system and look for my girl.”

“Don’t you think you should just find someone else?” his AI asked.

Diego frowned. “Just do it. I don’t need your sass.”

He swore he could hear the device sigh. The lights dimmed and the various screens on the walls began showing porn. He couldn’t help but chuckle. He searched until he found the security footage and scrolled through the last hour until he found who he was looking for. He accessed and memorized her info. With that done, he ordered his AI to erase his tracks and dashed to the stairs.

By the time he got to her floor, sweat was dripping down his brow, making his skin itch behind the mask.

“She better be a good fuck, for all the trouble you’re going through,” his AI muttered, coming out of sleep mode.

“You can shut up before I put you in pause mode.” Diego threatened. His eyes roamed over the LED panels on the doors.

“You do that and I’ll take my sweet time coming back online when you need me,” she said.

“I should never have insisted you have an AI core. Keep this up and I won’t find you a body.” The AI had no come back to that.

Diego finally found Anarrae’s room and pondered whether to knock or break in.

“AI, access her file and find out why she was looking for a prossy.”

“First you threaten me and now I’m supposed to help you? Cristo, cosa non faccio…” she sighed and brought up the files.

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