Thursday, 12 February 2015

Excerpt & Giveaway: Breaking in Waves Series by Laila Blake



Synopsis:
When journalist Iris Ellis visits a sleepy seaside town to interview recluse screenwriter Paul Archer, he offers her insights into never acted upon fantasies of dominance and submission. Too curious to deny herself a taste of them, Iris gives herself up to Paul's gentle guidance, but when she realizes that a taste can never be enough, she must find the courage to ask for what she needs or risk losing it all.

Called a "gem for fans of BDSM romance and the perfect starting point for readers new to the genre" by RT Book Reviews, Driftwood Deeds is a novella of sexual awakening as well as consent and communication in bdsm.


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Synopsis:

Love, they say, is magnified by absence.

After the dream-like quality of Iris' visit at Paul's sea-side home, she is back in the routine and drudgery of her city life. Struggling to put a label on what they have together, they phone and write letters, trying to sustain the flame, until they can make time to be in each other's arms again. But once they are, how do you pull back into proportions a love so magnified it burns?

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Synopsis:

In this last installment in the Breaking in Waves series, Paul takes the helm and tells the story of how he and Iris move in together. Two decades of a bachelor's lifestyle are not easy to merge into a life together, and Paul goes on a journey of embracing Iris in his seaside world. Without holding back and without fear.

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About the author:

Laila Blake (lailablake.com) is an author, linguist and translator. She writes character-driven love stories, co-hosts the podcast Lilt and blogs about writing, feminism and society.

Her work has been featured in numerous anthologies. Keeping a balance between her different interests, Laila Blake’s body of work encompasses literary erotica, romance, and various fields in speculative fiction (dystopian/post-apocalypse, fantasy, paranormal romance and urban fantasy) and she adores finding ways to mix and match.

A self-proclaimed nerd, she lives in Cologne/Germany with her cat Nookie, harbors a deep fondness for obscure folk singers and plays the guitar. She loves photography, science documentaries and classic literature, as well as Doctor Who, Game of Thrones and The Big Bang Theory.

You can find her across the web. To stay up to date with her most recent publications, please consider signing up for her spam-free newsletter.



Author links:


Excerpt:

If I was writing a film about us, my kitchen would be the central location. Good sex and good cooking are linked for me, inextricably together. They trigger the same areas of the brain-- taste and smell and texture and pleasure. I think of sex when I eat good food, and I want good food when I lie there spent after an orgasm, something full of life and flavor and color to recuperate and start again. 
We’ve always spent a lot of a time here. In varying states of undress.

She feels it too, I think. That’s why her breathing is a little shallow. That’s why she steals a slice of zucchini as I layer it piece by piece between the eggplant, the yellow squash and the bright tomatoes. She has that glint in her eyes, small and wicked, and even now, after all this time, she looks hesitant when she tries to push boundaries. She still stops short of actually pushing them.

Iris loves to be good, to be praised, to be my beautiful, precious girl. She hates displeasing me, even as a game. But neither can she come out and ask for it, tell me about the tingling between her legs, the longing, the ache that only the crack of my belt can mend. And so she steals bits of zucchini, or switches the radio away from my favorite station just as we drive into my street. She criticizes books she knows I love, or picks them up and leaves them on a different shelf-- like I had any order in mind to begin with. They are little things, so minor I would miss them all the time, if it wasn’t for that look in her eyes.

It’s the look of guilt and desire, of fighting against her nature and fearing the consequences she’s trying to induce. It’s a look that makes my cock hard, that squeezes my chest almost painfully.
I listen to the zucchini crunch between her teeth. She eats it slowly, eyeing my profile as though wondering if I noticed anything at all. Sometimes I like to indulge her, I like to give her what she wants even though she can’t ask for it, even though she’s trying to manipulate the circumstances. It feels good sometimes, to let her out to play.

Today I don’t.

She picks the next slice out of the casserole, right out from between a slice of tomato and a slice of yellow squash, where they nestle in colorful stripes. She knows I can’t miss this one, and her hand hovers there a moment too long, just like she’s waiting for me to catch up and slap it away. But again, I don’t.

I watch her bring the slice to her mouth from the corner of my eyes. She places it on her tongue like a communion wafer, with intensity and slow purpose. She shudders; it’s a marvel to watch that change. A few seconds ago, she was my sweet girl, leaning next to me, relaxed and happy. Now, she’s strung tight, nervous and needy, like she exchanged her body for a different one.

“Are you bored?” I ask her. I look down at the pattern of vegetable slices, at the spot where she messed it up. When I drag my gaze up to her face, there are red spots on her neck, white teeth-marks on her lower lip.

She shakes her head.

“I think you are. You want attention, pet?”

Giveaway:

Monday, 9 February 2015

Guest Post & Giveaway: The Hartford Inheritance by Jane A Hobden



Intense, gripping, psychological thriller.

As a child, Kitty Harmer had her world turned upside down when her twin sister, Sarah, was taken into care. Now aged 26 and struggling, she is contacted about the inheritance of a property she has never heard of miles away. Kitty seizes the opportunity and moves into Belford Hall, set on acres of land in Norfolk.

Kitty is soon drawn to the charms of the Norfolk countryside, and a local farmer. As she settles into the primitive manor house, she discovers a book titled Hartford Place locked in a library drawer. Kitty soon learns of the stories surrounding the Hall, a curse made in the 1800s and a past she knew nothing about. Her Hartford ancestors mirror Kitty with their raven hair and emerald eyes and have all suffered tragedy, with veiled secrets buried deep.

When the twins reunite, Sarah reveals a hardship that unsettles Kitty’s memories of her own childhood. Is there a curse on the Hartford family? Is there a ghostly presence at the Hall? This thriller takes Kitty on a journey through a past that emulates her future. With twists and turns through history and the present, you will be swept into the Hartford Inheritance and the passionate jealousy that shadows the identical twins through the generations.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Since I was a child, I have enjoyed literature and would spend countless hours after school tucked away in my bedroom reading and composing stories.  My daughter, who is 11 years old, does exactly the same. She adores the process of story-telling and when we discussed what she wanted to be, she said without any hesitation an Author. It melted my heart. It’s where my passion has always been.  It’ hard to believe that after starting the process of writing my debut novel in 2011, I have finally published.  I hope very much that you enjoy my writing and I intend to follow The Hartford Inheritance with a prequel and a sequel.

I live in the South East Coast of England, where I have always lived and  which I adore. I’ve been married for 12 years now to a man who inspires me and with whom I am still very much in love. We have two children together, Harriet, now aged 11 years, and Toby, aged 6 years. My parents are my rocks and have taught me all my best qualities – to be fair and kind to everyone. They have always been there for me and they are very proud of me for achieving my goal of publishing my first book.
This book is dedicated to all of my family, whom I love so very much.


EXCERPT

Despite my confusion at the name, the anxiety that had been in my stomach all day spun out of control and as I stood to greet her, I felt as though I may faint. I quickly sat back down. I looked to the door and seconds later my identical twin walked through it. Her hair was no longer jet black but was dyed a very dubious shade of blonde and heavy black roots. Her hair was straggly down her back and looked like it hadn’t seen a comb in days. Though she was 26, her piercing green eyes looked much older than her years. She was heavily made-up, with black kohl thickly applied around her eyes and bright red lipstick. Despite her trampy appearance, around her neck she wore the heart-shaped silver locket that our grandma had given us when we were four, just before she died. We had treasured those necklaces after the car accident but I had lost mine when I was about 16. It was touching that Sarah was wearing hers because of the emotions attached to it.

As she walked through the door, Sarah looked over to me with a severity that made me flinch. I attempted to smile and meet her gaze until she sat down but she was staring straight at Mrs Standing. Even Mrs Standing seemed a little lost for words and a pause sat heavy in the room. Finally Mrs Standing broke the silence. 'Kitty, Sarah, I think it’s been a long time since you’ve seen each other. Would it be better to get on with the legal aspect of things and then you can decide where you go from here?’

I didn't know what to say or how to respond and so I sat in silence. I looked to Sarah for some emotion but she did not look to me.

My journey to self-publishing. Why did you chose to do it this way instead of using a traditional publisher. Regrets? Triumphs? Lessons learned?

- Guest Post by Jane Hobden

I thought of the conception for the book in 2011 and spent two months whilst I was between jobs writing the book.  Then I gave the first draft to two friends, one who I knew would be very honest with me and the other who would tell me it was fab whatever!!!!  I needed that balance!!!  Then I started the process of going into more depth with the characters and the plot.  This took me quite some time as I was working full time and I would go for long periods not touching it!!  Then I started the editing process.  Again this took me some time because instead of editing, I would be looking to change the plot instead of what I was trying to achieve.

Throughout the processes I sent letters and chapters to over 30 literary agents without any success.  One of the publishers told me that they receive hundreds of samples of work each week and only take on one new author each year so I realised the odds weren't going to be great!!  I decided in 2014 that I really wanted to get the book published and I researched how to upload onto Kindle and other eBooks on the internet.  I got in touch with a formatter named Stephen Baker from Ebooksbydesign.  He was absolutely brilliant.  He formatted the book into all ebook versions, got the ISBN numbers and uploaded it onto all eBook sites.


I've never been more proud of myself and certainly don't have any regrets.  The thing that I am finding the most difficult is to get it out.

GIVEAWAY

The author is giving away one paperback copy of THE HARTFORD INHERITANCE to a winner of the Rafflecopter.



a Rafflecopter giveaway 

Monday, 12 January 2015

Review: The Magic Poof by Stephen Hodges


Original Title: The Magic Poof
Author: Stephen Hodges
Publisher: Xilbris Corporation
Release Date: June 26th 2013
Source: From Elite Book Promotions
Genre: Children's Picture Books

Seven year old Ange-Marie has always felt different. Who wouldn't when your best friend is literally attached to you? The Poof is a great ball of curly hair that sits directly on top of Ange-Marie's head. His magical and playful nature always seems to produce mischief and adventure. In book one of The Magic Poof series, Ange-Marie must decide what to wear for school picture day. But The Poof also wants to look good for picture day! How does Ange-Marie look her best and keep her enchanted and hairy friend a secret? In the end, both The Poof and Ange-Marie find that compromise is the key in any friendship.

REVIEW

Ange-Marie is different from the regular kids, because she has a magic poof attached to her already curly hair.  It can speak to her and can shape itself into different objects.  They both have fun together, without telling the outside world.  It was the school picture day and the magic poof wants to look good in the picture too.  But Ange-Marie tries to tell her friend that it will give them away.  In the end, their friendship is what wins.

A cute children's picture book, which says about the friendship and innocence of a young girl, Ange-Marie with her magic poof.  It's natural flow and amazing illustrations will attract the little ones for a good nice read.  This will be a good pick for book clubs as well.

5 STARS!

Wednesday, 7 January 2015

In My Habitat - Guest Post by Randi Everheart + Giveaway

RandiEverheart_TristanCover

Author: Randi Everheart
Title: Tristan
Series: A Kendall Family Novel #1
Release Date: December 23rd, 2014
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Links: Amazon | Goodreads | Createspace

Five years ago, Tristan Kendall left home and the woman he loved to prove himself on the sport bike racing circuit. With his career briefly on hold, he’s come to realize everything - and everyone - he ever wanted was right at home all along. Now he’s determined to win back her heart no matter the cost.

But Victoria Lane’s been through more than Tristan knows since he broke her heart. No longer the girl he once knew, she has a life to live, and a heart to give, but only to someone who’s planning to stick around. And she’s sure that isn’t him. Can he convince her that she’s the only victory lane he wants to be in? 


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IN MY HABITAT

- Guest Post by Randi Everheart

Thanks for having me!


I’ve been writing for many years and have gone through a few desks in my time.  But I’m now happy to report that I am desk-free!  Laptops are so much easier to work on and I do NOT miss my desktop computer.  That said, sometimes I need more quiet than I typically get and retire to my recording studio, taking the laptop with me.  


Yes, I’m also a musician, one who’s recorded a few CDs over the years, though I confess to not having much time anymore.  I have to choose between fiction and music, usually, and used to put music first.  But now fiction is front and center!

Since I work on a laptop now, I don’t really have a desk, unless you want to consider my lap one.  That’s where the magic happens – whether there’s a computer there or not ;)


One of the reasons I need more peace and quiet sometimes is my toddler, who I watch after work while trying to write, too.  He’s very self-sufficient with play.  In fact, when I get down on the floor with him, he gives me about 5 minutes before deciding he’s bored with me and wants to do something else.  It works out pretty well, normally, allowing me to write and hang out with him at the same time.

But I certainly have to stop mid-sentence to help him at times.  Or give him a bottle, change him, or comfort him after a tumble.  And here is his latest handiwork, a broken window that’s still boarded up while I wait for the insurance guys to get it fixed:


He broke it right in front of me while I was writing a sentence.  I was just about to tell him to stop tapping on the glass with his plastic golf club when it shattered.  He was okay, but the window wasn’t!

So that’s my current view as I’m writing right now.  It’s darker now, too, because I leave the curtains closed to prevent him from playing with the boarded up window – that already gave him a splinter!  One table is now in front of it to bar the way.  It’s certainly not the first time we’ve rearranged the room for him.


This is the chair I sit in while writing; it’s also been moved from its usual position due to the kiddo, but that’s been true so long I don’t remember where it used to be!  It’s a recliner and has cup holders for water (and wine).  I used to write on the couch you see behind it until the recliner handle broke a while ago and the spouse and I just can’t around to fixing it.  Funny how every errand takes a long time to do with a toddler around, but my writing takes priority over some household stuff.


I sometimes get my best writing done during his naps or after bedtime, not surprisingly.  Or when my spouse takes over.  I try to get computer errands like promotional stuff done when I’m more distracted.  It’s a life.

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AUTHOR BIO

Randi Everheart is an avid author of romance, due in no small part to being a diehard romantic.  After all, Randi once wrote a song for the object of a crush and penned a fifty page love letter for another! The same spirit now flows into these stories – hopefully to win your heart!

Randi has a Bachelors of Music in classical guitar but has always been more of a rocker, having released several albums under another name.  Tendonitis in both arms ended career plans in music, leading to a new career as a software developer. Today Randi co-owns a software consulting firm and lives in the Maryland suburbs north of D.C., is married, and loves spending time with son Ryan when not writing, playing guitar or golf, or writing smut.


AUTHOR LINKS: Website | Twitter | Facebook

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GIVEAWAY

Please enter the Rafflecopter giveaway to win the ecopy of Tristan by Randi Everheart.  The giveaway is open INTERNATIONALLY until March 10th, 2014.  There will be five winners.  So, all the best!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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