Category Archives: Giveaways
Have you ever read a romance novel with an Albanian hero? Me, either. Please welcome Alyssa Cole! Her novel, Eagle’s Heart, is an interracial romantic suspense with a hero who is an Albanian FBI agent. She’s got an interesting blog post about why she writes multicultural heroes. She’s giving away a copy of her book and a $10 Amazon gift card. Let’s get started!
Tell us about yourself.
My day job is an editor at a science journal, so writing romance is a great escape from reading about diseases and looking at pictures of lab rats. Like most authors, I’ve been in love with reading and writing since I was a child, and I’m really glad that I’m able to do it professionally now. I love learning new things, so my hobbies range from playing soccer to strumming a banjo to drawing comics. Right now, I’m focusing on learning French parce que mon fiancé est français. I’ve also started teaching a romance writing workshop, which is super fun and something I hope to continue in the years to come.
Loving Outside the Box: Why I Write Multicultural Heroes
Very soon after my first novel, Eagle’s Heart, was released I received a comment on my blog that made me tear up with happiness:
As an Albanian I just want to say thank you for doing research on my people before writing the book, the culture and the history was great. I loved the story and thank you for not only making the bad guy Albanian but also the good guy. Great story. I hope you continue writing more books soon.
Yes, any author likes hearing that her book is good and well-researched and that a reader enjoyed it, but the bolded part (emphasis mine) is what really got me.
The reason I first started scribbling my own fairy tales as a child, and then my own romantic stories as I got older, is that I wanted to read about characters that represented me. Although I loved reading romances about all types of people, I felt that I didn’t even really have the choice to read books about people who looked like me. I still remember the joy of purchasing my first romance with a black heroine (Sandra Kitt’s The Color of Love).
Underrepresentation is a problem for black readers, but the world is a huge place made up of innumerable cultures and identities and it’s a problem for other cultures as well. As someone with friends from all over the world (I grew up in one of the most diverse areas of the US), the homogeneity in romance always nagged at me, as did the “fix” of making the genre, literally, black and white. When I write my novels, I try to incorporate characters from other cultures that have been given short shrift in the romance genre.
In Eagle’s Heart, the heroine is an African-American school teacher and the hero is an Albanian FBI agent. In general, when you learn about Albanians you’re likely to only hear about (a) war, (b) crime, (c) war crimes, or (d) the mafia. I thought it was important to make sure that Julian represented for all the good Albanians out there, who are three-dimensional humans capable of laughter and love and feats of heroism and who deserve to be seen as more than a villain or a victim.
In my erotic short story coming out this week, Sweet to the Taste, the heroine is a black woman (with dreadlocks) and the male protagonist is a hot Indian wedding singer. I’ll leave the heroine’s natural hair situation for another discussion. As for the hero, television and the media have done an excellent job of pigeonholing Indian men. In the national psyche, they can only be Quickie Mart workers or IT guys, and they’re always awkward and inexperienced when it comes to women. In Sweet to the Taste, the hero knows exactly how to please a woman, and takes our heroine on an erotic path to self-discovery. I think it’s important for the hot South Asian men of the world to receive the recognition they so thoroughly deserve.
One of my works in progress features a Korean hero. I won’t list the numerous insulting stereotypes about Asian men, but I’m sure you can think of one or two. Hopefully, stories that resist the predominant narratives help undercut the unfair preconceptions that so many POC face. As so many proponents of diversity in romance have said in one way or another: everyone deserves a happy ending. I hope that readers of all hues enjoy my books, but I do love helping to diversify the happily ever after.
Salomeh Jones is a Brooklyn high school teacher whose attempt to aid an abused student ruins her career and puts her life in jeopardy. Julian Tamali is a special agent hot on the trail of the Albanian mafia boss responsible for a slew of crimes, including the death of Julian’s family. When Julian finds a connection between the mafia boss and the disgraced school teacher, he sets into motion a series of events that will change their lives forever.
A night of pleasure throws them into a deadly game of cat and mouse with the man who has kidnapped Salomeh’s student and is possibly providing weapons to terrorists. Caught in a web of passion, danger, and betrayal, Julian and Salomeh must stop the mafia boss or forfeit their chance at redemption—and their lives.
“Not feeling patriotic?”
“What?” she squeaked, turning to face the man who had somehow crept up next to her while she was preoccupied with mentally flagellating herself.
“I was just observing that you don’t seem very patriotic,” he continued. He stood next to her, arms folded across his chest as he gazed at the fireworks. In the afterglow of the fireworks, all she could make out clearly was a head of shaggy black hair and the profile of a Roman nose and a well-defined jaw. He was tall, much taller than her five-feet-seven inches, and muscled. For a moment, fear coiled in Salomeh’s stomach. Could he be here to hurt her? Did he have something to do with Alexi?
“What are you talking about?” Salomeh snapped, irritated with him for invading her space and at herself for succumbing to distress. The jolt of anxiety segued into anger at the realization that she would have to suspect everyone until she could find Yelena, and hopefully, expose this Bardhyn character.
She took a sip of her gin and tonic and tried to rein in her annoyance, but she was tired of having her privacy invaded. All the people who had harassed her over the past weeks, the reporter with the fake card her neighbor had encountered the day before, the women across the rooftop just moments before, and now this man—all of them seemed to think it was perfectly okay to just barge into her life.
A huge burst of purple and yellow fireworks lit up the night sky, and from other parts of the roof, she could hear people clapping and whistling at the elaborate display. The man turned to her then, and in the glow of the fireworks she could see bright green eyes shining from under the fringe of his hair. His olive complexion provided a contrast that made his eyes seem even more brilliant. A smile touched his full, rosy lips. He was definitely handsome, although that didn’t change that fact that he was a nuisance. A very well-built and overly confident nuisance.
Salomeh watched surreptitiously as he reached up to run a hand through his hair. A thrill went through her at the way his biceps flexed and his pectorals tightened as he moved. His raw power was apparent even in this most casual of motions. Part of her wondered what it would be like to have all that strength concentrated on touching her. That same part, located between her legs, suddenly clenched when he shifted slightly closer to her.
“I’m sorry,” he continued, his accent still unfamiliar to her. It had the melodic but dolorous tone of something not quite European. “It’s just that it’s a beautiful night, the sky is filled with lovely fireworks, it’s the anniversary of your country’s independence, and you seem…unimpressed with it all.”
Salomeh rolled her eyes, although she was fairly certain the action was hidden by the shadow of the water tower. “I wasn’t aware that Homeland Security would be doing patriotism spot checks,” she deadpanned. He stiffened, as if she had offended him somehow. Good, she thought viciously, the scent of elderberry tickling her nose as she took a sip of her drink. “That’s what this is right? I mean, you’re not just some creep who roams the rooftops of Brooklyn, sneaking up on unsuspecting women for no reason, are you? Because that would be kind of weird.”
“You’ve seen through my disguise,” he said with mock severity. “We’re always on the lookout for suspicious characters. A woman lurking in a strategically isolated position such as this during a party merits an investigation. There must be something driving her away from everyone, no?”
He leaned in slightly just as a shower of white light exploded in the sky. Salomeh could see that his eyes were narrowed, his gaze entirely focused on her despite the world-famous light show occurring just above their heads. She had become used to scrutiny since her story had graced the covers of the tabloids. People had looked at her with disgust and disbelief and pity. But the look this man gave her was different. It was teasing and friendly and, most of all, interested.
Sweet to the Taste: Available at Amazon on 2/21/2014.
Visit Alyssa online at www.alyssacole.com. You can also find her on Twitter, Facebook, and Goodreads.
Prize: An ebook copy of Eagle’s Heart and a $10 Amazon gift card.
How to enter: Answer the following question in the comments: What was the first romance novel that made you feel a special connection with the hero or heroine? Not only cultural connections count: maybe the heroine was a paleontologist and that was your dream job at the time, or maybe the hero came from your hometown!
Deadline to enter: Saturday, February 22, 2014 at 11:59 pm EST. Alyssa will announce the winner in the comments and they will be contacted via email.
Note: By participating in this contest, you understand that if you’re the winner, your email address will be shared with Alyssa so you can receive your prize.
It was great to have you on the blog, Alyssa. Best wishes for much success!
Please welcome Roxy Wilson to my blog! She’s a fellow islander and is here to share details about her new interracial romance, The Right Kind of Love.
Tell us about yourself.
I’m the wife of a wonderfully supportive husband and the mother of three precocious, but precious kids. As a life-long educator, I’ve taught almost all levels of the educational system, from kindergarten, right up to the department of teacher education. Perhaps, it was because I was born and bred in the Caribbean, I love tales featuring Brer Anansi, Papa Bois, Soucayant, and La Diablesse, all of whom are characters of West Indian folklore. What’s more, I enjoy attending plays, which are written and directed by local playwrights. When I’m not writing stories or poems, I can be found curled up in bed, reading. Other times, you’ll find me trying out a new recipe with my thirteen year-old daughter, who also enjoys cooking. And when funds are available, I enjoy visiting the many islands of the Caribbean.
What is the most romantic gesture you’ve ever received?
That would be when my husband arranged to have me whisked away from my classroom, and straight to the airport, so I could meet him in St. Lucia. We stayed at the same hotel, and in the same room that we did, when we were on our honeymoon. It’s a birthday I’ll never, ever forget.
What type of music do you listen to?
I have an eclectic taste in music, ranging from calypso, soca, reggae, to R&B from the 80’s, soft rock, and a bit of heavy metal. During the Christmas season, I love to listen to parang and its variants, soca parang, and chutney soca parang.
What are your favorite types of movies to watch?
As long as there’s action, I’ll watch it. So, think X-Men, Thor, Spiderman, Superman and G.I. Joe. From time to time, I’ll watch a romantic comedy or two.
What types of books are on your bookshelf at home?
That runs the full gamut of genres, from romance, Shakespeare, mysteries, drama, poetry and westerns, to autobiographies/biographies, devotionals and Biblical study guides.
What is your favorite body part on a man or woman?
Definitely a man’s shoulders. I love them wide and square; better to wrap around me, and make me feel safe and warm.
Finish this sentence: You gotta love a man who…
…knows how to make a woman feel as if she’s the only one who rocks his world, the only woman who makes his life complete.
Short answer choices:
Leather or lace? leather
Long or short hair? Long hair
Fruity drink or strong liquor? Fruity drink with a dash of strong liquor
Heels or flats? flats
Jeans or skirt? skirts
Coffee or tea? Tea, as long as it’s sweet
Glamorous girl or girl next door? Girl next door
Picky eater or adventurous? adventurous
Glamorous makeup or au naturale? It depends on the type of occasion.
Sexy bed-head or sophisticated coif? Sophisticated coif
What inspired you to write your latest release?
A Facebook friend posted an article, An Interracial Fix for Black Marriage, by Ralph Richard Banks. I read it and was intrigued. I started conducting searches on YouTube to see if Professor Banks had appeared on any programs. Luck would have it that he was a specially invited guest on many talk shows, as well as on CNN. Then, I started reading romance stories featuring interracial characters. I was hooked. After reading one of Marilyn Lee’s novels, featuring a Native American hero and a black heroine, I figured I could try my hand at writing a romance story, too. However, I decided that my story would feature a black woman and a white man, who have to overcome the challenges of being an interracial couple. Within a month, I had penned the Right Kind of Love.
What can readers expect from you next?
I’m working on a novella, featuring two best friends and a baby. It will be my first attempt at self-publishing. I’m hoping to have it ready in time for Valentine’s Day.
New Yorker Sloane Saunders has just about given up on love. She’s thirty-something and very single. A magazine article jolts her from her malaise and motivates her to do something she’s never tried before: online dating, and firstmeet.com is the website of choice.
Attending his brother’s bachelor party was the wake-up call Blake Morrison needed. Memories of a passionate relationship from his past drive him to return to claim his woman. Sloane. Despite the sizzling chemistry between them, it’s not as easy as he thought. With a family crisis and Sloane’s preconceived notions about love and relationships getting in the way, can Blake convince Sloane they have the right kind of love and that a love like theirs can last?
“Damn, Sloane, if that guy stares any harder at you, he’s going to bore a hole through your back. You know him?”
Sloane didn’t need to look to see whom Noah was referring to, because she knew the exact moment Blake had entered the room. It took all her willpower not to drink him in with her eyes, because he looked so debonair in his suit. She wanted to go across and greet him, but she felt a bit nervous, especially as they hadn’t spoken to each other since their disastrous movie night. A while ago, when Harper wove a story about some mishap she and Malcolm had encountered last Friday night, Sloane had made the decision to go over and say hello to Blake. Then Noah invited her to dance with him. How could she refuse when they were on a date? Their first date as a result of Firstmeet.com. It was hard for her to concentrate on him though, when all her thoughts were focused on Blake. Merely thinking about Blake’s musky, earthy scent, and the way his hands felt while he held her, made her pulse quicken.
Noah whispered something in her ear, but she didn’t pay much attention to what he said. She just chuckled softly and pretended to be having fun, when all her thoughts were focused on Blake. She could tell Noah liked her a lot. He had a great sense of humor, which was a definite plus. When Sloane learned Noah was one of the senior partners in an Albany law firm, she remembered Harper urging her to look for variety in the men she dated.
Still, under other circumstances, Noah would have been a good guy to get to know better, but she wasn’t into him. Sure he was good looking and could probably pass for Shemar Moore who played Derek Morgan on Criminal Minds. But Noah didn’t make her pulse race, or her hands tremble like Blake did.
The only man who could make her react this way.
How could she follow through with another date with Noah? It wouldn’t be fair to him. Did it matter? A relationship between her and Blake was doomed to fail, so why give it a chance in the first place? Perhaps, she didn’t need chemistry, only stability and predictability. A relationship with Blake would be far from predictable, especially given the kind of judgmental world they lived in.
“He’s not the kind to do something stupid, is he?” Noah eyed Blake, his lips curled. “I can deal with him if you like.”
Oh my goodness, I never even answered Noah’s first question. Come on, Sloane, keep your head in the game.
“Never mind, him. He’s just one of my friends from high school.”
“Seems to me, he thinks of you as much more than a friend, from the way he’s looking at you.”
“Blake’s just a little protective, is all. Always has been, always will be.”
“Well, if he stares at you any harder I might be tempted to call security.” Noah smiled to show he meant it as a joke.
“Blake’s harmless. I’ll go over to say hi to him after this song is over.”
“Uh, uh. It’s too late. Here comes Frank Farmer.”
If Sloane wasn’t so nervous, she would have chuckled at Noah’s reference to the film, The Body Guard, but her eyes, her body, her mind, her heart were too focused on the man who permeated every thought she’d had for the last few days.
“Do you mind if I cut in?” Blake stood slightly behind Noah and addressed him, but his eyes were only on Sloane.
Noah looked at Sloane as if to make certain she’d be willing to dance with Blake.
“That’s fine, Noah.”
Noah nodded his head imperceptibly, leaned in and placed a gentle kiss on her cheek.
No heart palpitations.
Not like the way she felt just from being a few feet away from Blake.
She and Blake watched Noah until he faded into the crowd.
Blake was the first to speak. “Will you dance with me?”
Where can readers find you online?
Website/Blog – http://roxywilson.wordpress.com/
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/roxy.wilson.737
Facebook fan page - https://www.facebook.com/pages/Author-Roxy-Wilson/153086841563014?ref=hl
Amazon author page – http://www.amazon.com/Roxy-Wilson/e/B00D0W0C8K/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1
Twitter: https: //twitter.com/roxywilson17
Prize: a copy of The Right Kind of Love
How to enter: Leave a comment below. After I pick the winner, Delaney will send your email address so I can forward your prize.
Deadline to enter: Tonight at 11:59 pm EST.
Thanks for the great contest and visiting my blog, Roxy!
Happy New Year! How about starting off the new year with a hot new romance?
Author LV Lewis is here with information about her latest release, Redeeming the Amazon. It’s a 23,000 word erotic novella set in New Orleans. The book is part of the Den of Sin series, four sexy stories released by four different authors. Make sure you enter the contests at the end for a chance to win those prizes!
Starting December 6 the authors of the Den of Sin Series invited you to indulge in a new erotica or erotic romance novella each Friday until December 27. Each had a different couple (or trio) and different kinks:
December 6: Forbidden Rendezvous by Mel Blue
Seraphina orchestrates fantasies, but this year she’ll create one of her own. It’s against the rules for an employee to participate in the weekend-long sex-capade but she’s willing to risk it for Luke. The man’s a mystery, but in a sea of CEOs and Fortune 500 billionaires, he stands out. His past and connection to her boss is clouded in intrigue, but she knows what he wants, and she plans to star in one of his voyeuristic fantasies.
December 13: Ménage à Troys by Holley Trent
At the Den of Sin anything goes, so instead of two newlyweds letting down their guards to finally consummate their marriage of convenience, three people desperate to be touched forge bonds. That’s all well and good for the weekend, but what will shake out of their tentative ménage à trois when it’s time to go home?
December 20: Wicked Surrender by Ambrielle Kirk
Kris is tired of spending her nights playing with hard plastic and silicone. She wants a real man for a night, and expects to find him at the Den of Sin. She doesn’t expect to meet one of the World’s Most Eligible Bachelors there, and this isn’t the first time she’s met him. Unfortunately, Travis Brenden doesn’t seem to remember her.
December 27: Redeeming the Amazon by L. V. Lewis
Karen hasn’t made love fully unclothed since her double mastectomy and the subsequent demise of her marriage. Her most significant relationship occurred right after her surgery when she connected with a former Marine, amputee classmate. Paul once left his heart in Baltimore with a beautiful former model, whose crumbling marriage was the only deterrent to his waning honor. A fantasy weekend at his uncle’s hotel may give him a second chance with his contemporary Amazon…if her fear of rejection doesn’t become a barrier to their reconnection.
To learn more about this shared world series and its authors, and to access purchasing information, visit DenofSinSeries.com.
The Den of Sin series
REDEEMING THE AMAZON
Leave your inhibitions at the door…and turn the page.
New Orleans’s Hotel Beaudelaire isn’t just a critically acclaimed 5-star establishment. For New Year’s Eve, it becomes a Den of Sin, and its owner extends invitations to a few discriminating guests to help make their sexual fantasies come true.
Most come to The Beaudelaire Hotel a select few times a year merely to indulge in sexual fantasy, but the stakes are higher for Karen Freeman and Paul Beaudelaire this New Year’s weekend. Karen is nine years post-op from a double mastectomy, and her vain ex-husband hadn’t agreed with her decision to remove her remaining good breast or to eschew reconstruction. In the end, that decision cost her. She lost her marriage, but she’s certain the move has prolonged her life.
Returning to a normal dating and sex life has been difficult. She hasn’t made love fully unclothed since the demise of her marriage, and her most significant relationship occurred right after her surgery. When she was still recuperating, she had an affair of the heart with a Marine amputee who’d also been her Ph.D. classmate.
Paul Beaudelaire once led a charmed life as a ladies’ man who had his pick of women in the upper echelons of New Orleans society. He’d been satisfied to continue in that vein, until a Marine recruiter wooed him from LSU with tales of valor, courage, and commitment. His career in the corps cut short by the loss of his left leg, Paul returned to New Orleans with the best prosthesis Johns Hopkins orthopedics experts could fit him with. The problem was, he’d left his heart in Baltimore with a beautiful former model, whose crippled marriage was the only deterrent to his waning honor. Will this fantasy weekend at his Uncle Henri’s hotel give him a second chance with his contemporary Amazon, or will her fear of rejection be a barrier to their reconnection?
“What just happened? We were in a good place until all of a sudden, we weren’t.”
She shrugged like a gawky, inexperienced teen, afraid to go all the way with the boy she liked she wasn’t sure would still like her in the morning. He hated that the cancer had done this to her. Robbed her of her confidence.
“Karen, I would never hurt you.”
She smiled. He’d been going for intimacy, for sincerity, but apparently his heartfelt declaration struck her as funny.
“You know I won’t take advantage if you let me in,” he said, giving her a glimpse of his own vulnerability. This was as much about him as it was about her. Then he realized this statement was innuendo-laden as well, when her grin broadened.
“Exactly how do I know this?”
He would not let a moment of levity steal the inroads he was determined to make. “Because you know I’ve been where you are, even though on the surface it looks like I’ve dealt with and overcome all my issues with body image. Will you take a chance and go places with me intimately that you haven’t with anyone else?” He hoped like hell she could trust him. She hadn’t backed out when she found out he was her partner for the weekend, so there had to be something to her acceptance.
“How cunning. You knew the one thing—the only thing—that makes living inside our imperfections so difficult. I’m not surprised you get it.”
She smiled that same smile he saw in his fantasies. The one that says more than her words. She squinted, and laugh lines seemed to appear from nowhere. There was no guile or arrogance in it, just the tentative smile of a woman who was once very self-assured and was again trying it on for size.
It was that smile Paul had responded to first, before he’d discovered other interesting things as he’d continued to watch her. The way she walked with such grace, one might believe she was floating. The way she saw through bullshit as if she had a built in meter for it. Even his. The intensity with which she viewed life was even atypical, a study in contradictions for one who’d stared death in the face and made it back down.
“If we do this your way, I’ll have one rule.”
Desperation made him reckless. “Anything.”
“The lights must be off.”
“Except that…” He stood and paced. “Karen, we’re supposed to leave our inhibitions at the door.”
“Okay. Suppose I were to blindfold you instead?”
He stopped in his tracks and smiled involuntarily. “That sounds promising, but if we get any kinkier than that, we might have to change floors.”
“Let’s just get the mechanics down now, shall we?”
“That doesn’t sound particularly sexy.”
Her expression challenged him. “I’m going to make you rue that statement before this weekend is over.”
“Game on,” he said.
- Prize 1: Kindle Paperwhite (shipped to US residents)
- Prize 2: $50 egiftcard to winner’s retailer of choice (Amazon, B&N, or ARE)
- Prize 3: $25 egiftcard to winner’s retailer of choice (Amazon, B&N, or ARE)
- Prize 4: Winner’s choice of one ebook from each of the authors’ backlists
How to enter: Click the link and use the Rafflecopter.
- Prize 1: $20 giftcard
- Prize 2: An audiobook of 50 Shades of Jungle Fever ($18 value)
- Prize 3: An audiobook of Exit Strategy ($18 value)
- Prize 4: An ebook bundle of Fifty Shades of Jungle Fever and Exit Strategy
How to enter: Click the link and use the Rafflecopter.
The Goodreads contest has wrapped up and as promised, I’m doing a giveaway of the print books for my blog followers, too! You have another chance to win autographed copies of Volume 1 and Volume 2 of the Hawthorne Family series in print.
THE TEMPTATION OF A GOOD MAN
Can true love be found after one night of passion?
Celeste Burton goes out with her girlfriends to celebrate turning thirty and winds up spending an unforgettable night with the man of her dreams. One week later, as a favor, she attends a wedding with a friend as his date and is shocked when she sees Roarke again.
Roarke Hawthorne despises cheating. Cheating tore apart his family years ago. When the physics professor sees the woman he spent the night with show up at his sister’s wedding on the arm of his brother, he knows he should keep his distance. But because of the night they set fire to the sheets in his hotel room, he can’t resist the urge to be close to her–nor can he resist the temptation to have her back in his bed.
A HARD MAN TO LOVE
Hating him is easy. Loving him is hard.
Derrick Hoffman never quite got over not having a relationship with his biological father. The woman he was seeing is pregnant, and there’s no way he’s going to let her raise his child without him–even if it means coercing her into marriage.
Eva Jacob made the mistake of falling in love with Derrick, a man she knows is incapable of love. After their breakup, she discovers she’s pregnant. When she agrees to a loveless marriage, she tries to shield her heart from further pain. But she soon discovers that the heart wants what the heart wants, and her heart wants Derrick’s love.
HERE COMES TROUBLE
Who doesn’t love a bad boy?
Lorena Vega knows better than to have anything else to do with Matthew Hawthorne. Then he comes to her and asks for her help in writing a proposal for a grant to benefit the community center where he volunteers. She agrees to do the work, but she has her guard up, because having Matthew in her life again is a problem she doesn’t need.
Matthew still carries some guilt from when he hurt Lorena. Seeing her again for the first time in months makes him realize what a huge mistake he made, and he wants another chance to be the kind of man she deserves. He’s determined to win her back and prove he’s not the player he used to be, and nothing will stand in his way.
Not even the new man in her life.
FOR BETTER OR WORSE
Will her actions save her marriage or destroy it?
As a publicist for professional athletes, Antonio Vega is used to solving problems and spinning stories to the benefit of his clients. Yet he can’t seem to convince his wife that he has been and always will be faithful, and her lack of trust tests the limits of his patience.
Cassidy Hawthorne-Vega grew up in a home rocked by infidelity. When she suspects her husband is hiding something from her, she takes drastic steps to uncover the truth. Her actions result in a confrontation that threatens the bond of their marriage. It’s only when she reveals a painful secret from the past that Cassidy learns to accept the love her husband freely gives.
Prize: Four readers will receive autographed copies of Volume 1 and Volume 2 of the Hawthorne Family series, giftwrapped to your doorstep! (Note: copies may arrive after the holidays.)
Eligibility: You must be a follower of this blog. Open to international entrants.
How to enter: Submit your email address using the form below.
Deadline to enter: December 14, 2013 at 11:59 pm EST. Winners will be chosen by random.org, announced in the comments and contacted via email.
Please welcome Shakir Rashaan to my blog. For you BDSM fans, he’s the real deal, and he’s here to tell us about his new book, The Awakening, and share a blog post to give a unique perspective on his polyamorous relationship. Let’s get started!
Tell us about yourself.
There’s not much to tell, kind of LOL. I’m married with two kids, I work in the education system in the Safety & Security department, and a few other things that would make people think I’m “normal” so to speak. I hold three degrees, including a degree in Criminal Justice, and I played college basketball on the Division I level before injuries cut my career short. On the flip side of the coin, I am a Lifestyle Dominant (women love using the term Alpha Male, but I’m that and a whole lot more), my wife and I are what is termed a Dominant Couple within the BDSM community, I’m a flirt, I love to seduce when the opportunity presents itself, and, as I say on the Blog Talk Radio show I co-host: I’m a Hedonist, not a heathen. There’s a difference!
Which TV show(s) can you absolutely not miss every week?
Goodness, I can give you a rundown based on the day of the week!
Mondays: Almost Human, The Black List, and Sleepy Hollow; Tuesdays: Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.; Wednesdays: American Horror Story: Coven; Thursdays: Scandal and Elementary; Fridays: Dracula. Thanks to my wife and our submissive, I now have to add Dr. Who to the list, but I can’t remember what day of the week that comes on (thank the gods for DVR).
What is your dream car and why?
I know folks would say a Maserati or a Lamborghini or a Ferrari, but I’m not a small man. I stand 6’6” tall, so my dream cars are going to be American muscle all day long! I want a Cadillac Escalade…if He shows favor and I am able to enjoy some longevity as an author, that’s the first thing I’m getting!
Is there such a thing as too much sex in a romance novel? Explain.
Being an erotica author, I would say everything is usually in moderation, with some extra spice thrown in there. There are those who say there’s no such thing, but for me, if it flows within the story line, I say there’s not too much. Pleasure by Eric Jerome Dickey is proof of the balance between the two, even though some of his fans and readers felt there was too much sex in it. I highly disagree (can I say I love me some Nia Simone Bijou? Whew!).
What is your favorite body part on a woman?
Anyone who has followed me on Instagram or is connected to me on Facebook knows the answer to that question LOL! I’m primarily an ass man, but I also am a sucker for a pretty pair of eyes and a pretty set of suckable lips.
What can readers expect from you next?
This next year is going to be crazy, to say the least! The Awakening is out now, and Legacy, the second book in the Nubian Underworld series, will be set for release June 10, 2014, and Tempest, the third book in the series, has a December 2014 release. I also signed a three-book deal back in November with my publisher, Strebor Books, for my mystery series Deviant Intent, which is being repackaged as my Kink, P.I. series. The first book in that series will be set for a late 2014/early 2015 release with the first book, OBSESSION. I also will be featured in several anthologies in which I will bring out a variety of characters, from Cougars to Incubi, and a few other things in between.
I am in a polyamorous relationship with my wife.
Waits for the crickets to stop chirping as people pick their collective jaws up off the floor.
What? Did you think I simply made all that shit up in the books I write? Did you not read my disclaimer in the books? C’mon, son!
Hold on…before you start sending out the pitchforks of “why did you get married in the first place?” allow me to explain a bit.
My wife and I have a submissive, and in “vanilla” terms, she would be our girlfriend. We have another who also is submissive to us, and I guess you would consider her our girlfriend also, should you so choose to. Under more liberal legislation in the United States (yeah right) that would make it permissible to marry more than one, our girlfriends would be wife #2 & #3 without question.
But these United States are not very liberal in some mindsets… especially when it comes to the institution of marriage.
We (those of us within the poly community) are normal, everyday citizens who work, pay taxes, have families and all that good stuff, we just happen to have a more pragmatic approach to the concept of love, more of an agape love that mixes in with romantic love.
The one Bible verse that most anyone would throw up in an argument such as this when Poly unions get tossed up against Monogamous unions is 1 Corinthians 13, verses 4-8, which state:
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record or wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices in the truth.
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.
Now, let most who are in monogamous relationships tell you, we “deviant poly folk” don’t understand the meaning of that verse. After all, we “dishonor” our mate by getting into romantic entanglements, therefore we don’t “protect” our mate’s state of mind because there is supposedly no stability in a poly union.
Yeah, there’s not much stability in ANY union, to be real, and on both sides of the coin, neither has a very good track record when it comes to success rates.
As my sis, Rae Lamar, phrased in her two book series, Unlike Me/Somewhere in Between (what I affectionately call the Bree series): Love is love…managing it is the problem.
If you take nothing else away from this, it is that no relationship model is perfect: not monogamy, not open relationships, no polyamory or polygamy or polygyny…
If you and your significant other(s) can manage the day-to-day grind that being in a relationship places on you, then you are already ahead of the 50-60% that have already failed in doing what you are willing to work hard at keeping things together.
Now, what, you ask, does this have to do with the upcoming re-release of my novel, The Awakening?
Well, because the central couple in my series is a poly couple…there’s no monogamy involved in this series whatsoever.
But you know me by now…I have to be different, and different and sexy is what sells nowadays, and I plan to sell a lot of before it’s all said and done. IJS!
Where can readers find you online?
Your readers can hook up with me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Goodreads, too.
FB Fan Page: http://www.facebook.com/ShakirRashaanErotica
FB Fan Page (Company): http://www.facebook.com/ShadesofNEBU
Life seems well within the “Nubian Underworld” of the ATL, as Ramesses, his wife Neferterri, and their submissives are at the center of what can only be described as “paradise” by those who have seen the debauchery within. Amenhotep, Ramesses’ mentor, is on the verge of bringing in his newest slave to reside with him at the Palace, and the entire community has been invited to witness the decadence of the grounds and the libidinous nature of the guests in attendance.
Unfortunately, life is not always a bed of roses… sometimes the thorns must be felt.
All hell breaks loose when Ramesses and Neferterri begin losing their submissives for a variety of reasons, and Amenhotep gets caught up in a sting operation that makes the local news and threatens to blow the lid off of the Atlanta Fetish community that thrives on the anonymity that is enjoyed by all. Despite it all, everyone in the circle is there for one another, no matter the consequences.
Being in the Fulton County Jail was a bittersweet moment for me.
Before I turned to professional shutterbug I wanted to be a detective, like my father before me. So, being at the jail wasn’t supposed to give me the butterflies in my stomach I felt. It felt like an eternity walking towards the communication area to speak to Amenhotep, but somehow I managed to get there.
Seeing Him on the other side of that window, my heart damn near broke. Here was a man who made me the Dominant I am. Now, here he sat, an accused rapist and kidnapper, eyes completely bloodshot from staying up all night in the holding cell before they moved him to general population. I refused to take pity, though. In my mind He was never guilty in the first place. I was going to move heaven and earth to make sure He comes out of this without much of a scratch on him, mainly because I knew He would do the same for me. Family has to look out for each other.
I picked up the receiver, making eye contact with Him for the first time. He looked human to me, after looking like a god for so long. “How are You holding up?”
“Not good, youngster. I’m not even supposed to be in here,” Amenhotep stated through the receiver. “Ramesses, I didn’t do it. she said awful things, man. Said I raped her…abused her,
I sat there and watch helplessly as He was nearly reduced to tears. The first thing on my mind was whether the other slaves were okay.
“paka came down as soon as she found out. The cops took the computers…everything in
the dungeon that wasn’t bolted down.” Amenhotep repeated what paka told him earlier. “All of the girls gave statements to dispute what safi told the cops.”
“Why the hell would she say such things? You have a reputation within the community. she’s got to be aware of that.” My anger was boiling and mounting with each passing moment and with each word I spoke.
“Something spooked her. I know it,” Amenhotep regained his composure. “Either that, or she’s pissed about something. But what was it? I treated her like I treat all My girls.”
Yeah, every one of the girls was treated the same way, except for paka. The green eyed monster was on the loose. Damn.
“I’ve got some tough questions for You, Sir, and I need straight answers,” Ramesses took over inside of me, and it was needed. “How old is safi?”
“You know better,” Amenhotep didn’t like my tone, but I really didn’t care at that point. We were family, yes, but there was no time to look at things with rose-colored glasses. “I taught You, remember that.”
“What…was…her…age?” I commanded. I didn’t back down like I normally did when He asserted Himself and didn’t want to answer questions. Too much was at stake.
“19. Confirmed,” Amenhotep replied. “Next.”
“What was her status?” I stated, moving on to the next point of fact I needed. By status, I wanted to know in what capacity was safi supposed to serve as. In His House there were two
categories: sexual and domestic.
“Sexual and domestic,” Amenhotep again answered in a monotone voice. “Next.”
“Did You corrupt her station?” In asking that question, I meant did she begin to think that she was more than what her station dictated… and more importantly, did He give her the impression she meant more than her station suggested.
“I decline to answer.” Amenhotep shut down, pulling His ear away from the receiver.
“Not good enough, Sir,” I warned. I motioned for him to place His ear to the receiver. “Rumors will run rampant, and I need ammo to combat things until You post bond.”
“How long have we known each other?” Amenhotep asked, pushing His face closer to the glass.
“Sir, You are My mentor, and I love You like a father, but I need and I will get full disclosure.” I was blunt about my intentions, even if the answer would hurt.
“Yes, I did!”
Prize: a Kindle copy of The Awakening
How to enter: Leave a comment or question below for Shakir.
Deadline to enter: Tonight at 11:59 pm EST. The winner will be announced in the comments and contacted via email.
Thanks for visiting my blog, Shakir, and readers, good luck in the contest!
Only eleven (11) more days and The Wrong Man, Book 2 of the Love Unexpected series, will be released! All the retailers allow me to set the release date except Amazon, so factor in a day or two before or after for Kindle readers. I’m gifting copies on release day to ten (10) lucky blog followers. Be sure to enter the email address you use to follow this blog because I will be checking.
Prize: Ten winners will receive an ecopy of The Wrong Man in the format of your choice.
Eligibility: You must be a subscriber to this blog.
How to enter: Submit your information in the form below.
Deadline to enter: Wednesday, November 20, 2013 at 11:59 pm EST.
This giveaway is open to international entrants. Random.org will be used to pick the winners. The winners’ names will be posted in the comments below on Thursday, November 21, 2013, and the book gifted to the email address submitted.
I’m doing a book spotlight for one of my author friends, LV Lewis. Exit Strategy, book 2 of her interracial romance series, has dropped! There’s an excerpt and a great contest. Read on and get your copy.
The Highly Anticipated Follow-up to Fifty Shades of Jungle Fever!
Ex·it Strat·e·gy (noun) 1. A preplanned means of extricating oneself from a situation that is likely to become difficult or unpleasant. 2. The method by which a venture capitalist or business owner intends to get out of an investment that he or she has made in the past.
Will Keisha and Tristan exercise their elaborate EXIT STRATEGY and end their unorthodox arrangement?
Assailed by demons she thought she had conquered, Keisha Beale has uttered the words to end her tumultuous relationship with Tristan White. Separated, they grapple for a time with their personal demons. However, when their lives apart become unbearable, a credible threat brings them back together prematurely.
As they seek to discover who is responsible for the threats, several seemingly unrelated incidents throw them into a tailspin. Will Keisha’s youthful indiscretions or Tristan’s un-reconciled feelings for a former sub derail their tenuous arrangement?
In the meantime, trouble in Nathan and Jada’s paradise send dramatic ripples that hint of future difficulties in the idyllic pairing.
Tristan uses his vast wealth and connections to correct a gross miscarriage of justice, while Keisha makes herself utterly vulnerable to Tristan and fears he has chosen to exercise his own exit strategy.
Will this be the end of the indecent arrangement that became a fairy tale? Or will Keisha and Tristan reveal the trauma from their pasts so they may heal and completely embrace their relationship?
Sensual, suspenseful, and still infused with the riotous levity of Triple-G and Fairy Hoochie Mama, the Ghetto Girl Romance Quadrilogy departs from full parody with a distinctive take on love, loyalty, sacrifice, redemption, and acceptance.
Chapter Seven Excerpt
“Tell me again why you can’t stay?” Tristan says as we stand in front of the elevator.
“Because it’s just not a good idea. And I don’t have anything to wear.”
“Actually, you do,” he says. “Mrs. Naven found some things in the laundry after you left. Problem solved.” He takes both my hands and backs up into the sitting room.
“Tristan, we still have some things to sort out. Tonight was great, but I still don’t think I’m cut out to be your submissive.”
“Just my submissive, Keisha?”
I drop my head. “No. Anyone’s.”
“You’re afraid you’ll have panic attacks again, aren’t you?”
I feel like I’m about to be swallowed up by the sincere blue eyes tracking and pinning mine so effectively I can’t look away. “Yes. And I’m no use to you if I can’t endure the scenes, particularly the occasional disciplinary consequences.”
“What if there was a way you could?” His finger traces a gentle path down my cheek.
“What do you mean?”
“Just what I said. If there was a way we could work around the panic attacks, would you come back? For good?”
“You mean until you perfect your exit strategy? That’s what you venture capitalists call it, don’t you?”
“Ah, someone’s been paying attention at our semiannual business meetings?”
“I have a rather exacting mentor who insists on being heard.”
“Asshole,” he says and pulls me close.
I place my hands on his chest in an effort to sustain some emotional equilibrium, but he doesn’t let me go. “I’m the one who’ll be ass-out when you lose confidence in your investment and decide it’s time to diversify your portfolio again.”
“I don’t think that’s going to happen anytime soon.” He draws me closer, palming my hips, and I get his point. Pun intended. “I can’t seem to get enough of you.”
I slip out of his arms and put some space between us. “Chemistry has never been an issue for us, Tristan. I know your lifestyle is important to you, and I don’t know if I’ll be able to keep up.”
The truth is, I’m hopelessly in love with a man who hasn’t given me any indication that he will ever want a real relationship. Nothing has changed on that front. He still just wants just a Dominant/submissive relationship, which might enjoy a longevity his other arrangements haven’t had, but it will eventually end.
Can I really do this? I certainly don’t think I’ll become any less in love with him over time. Reentering a sexual relationship with Tristan now would be exceedingly counterproductive to the reasons I left in the first place, but I am hard-pressed to make myself walk away again.
Tristan moves so close behind me that I can feel the warmth of his skin, his breath wafting over my ear as he speaks. “We’ll take things slow—again.”
He runs a finger along my arm, and gooseflesh sprouts like ivy in its wake. I feel a pull toward him that can only be described as magnetic—my body eager to be reunited to his. Even though it could conceivably be more painful for me this time around, I’m not sure if leaving him again is within the realm of possibility. I can’t rationalize staying, but leaving becomes increasingly more difficult with each second I remain in his presence.
I turn to face him. “Slow isn’t necessarily going to keep the attacks at bay.” Or guard my heart if he decides he’s done with me.
“We’ll figure out a way to do that together.” He takes me into his arms again. “These three weeks have been . . . just please stay.”
I look into his eyes, and all I want to do at that moment is kiss him senseless. He may not have given me a declaration of love, but somehow I know this is as close as I’m going to get with a man like Tristan White. For now.
As an answer, I stand on my tiptoes, throw my arms around his neck, and kiss him with everything in me.
L. V. Lewis doesn’t have the financial means of Tristan White, but she wouldn’t want readers to go away from this new release empty handed, so she’s giving all readers the chance to win some fabulous prizes.
This time there are too many to list, but you can read the list and “Like” or “Follow” the Authors participating in my Release Day to enter the attached rafflecopter giveaway!
The giveaway will run from now until November 28, so like and follow my friends, then tweet about the giveaway daily to increase your odds of winning!
The giveaway will run from October 29th – November 28th.
During the week of October 29th – November 5th, Fifty Shades of Jungle Fever will be on sale for $.99!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
L. V. Lewis has one foot in South Georgia and the other in North Florida. She’s been blessed with a husband who’s put up with her for a lot of years and has given birth to four children, two of whom she has raised to adulthood and one to near adulthood. She delights in her almost empty nest status so much that she writes the kinkiest novels she can conjure up.
L. V. Lewis’s Exhaustive List of Contact Info:
The Blind Date is free on Amazon! I gave away pdf and epub copies a couple of weeks ago to anyone who’d like a copy for their ereader. Now it’s time for anyone with a Kindle or using the Kindle app to get their free copy. The book will be free until October 7th, after which it goes to the regular price of $2.99. Click here for your free copy: Amazon
In addition to giving away The Blind Date for free, I’m having a scavenger hunt contest as part of my virtual book tour to get the word out. I’ve been hosted by some great authors and sites that focus on romance. Check them out and you’ll probably find more books you’d like to read. You have nine days to submit your entries.
How many winners: Two lucky winners
- $20 gift card to Amazon or Barnes & Noble
- Delaney Diamond T-shirt in large or extra large
- Delaney Diamond two-tone tote bag
- Delaney Diamond keychain
- an autographed copy of Hot Latin Men Vol. I
- an autographed copy of Hot Latin Men Vol. II
- four bookmarks with Delaney Diamond book covers
Eligibility: You must be a subscriber to my blog. Prizes open to U.S. and international entrants.
How to enter: Correctly match each blog on my tour with its description. All answers can be found at the links I provided unless otherwise stated.
Deadline to enter: October 13, 2013 at 11:59 pm EST
Winners will be notified by email and announced on this contest post.
Blog Tour Stops:
Candace Shaw, Book Spotlight
Chicki Brown, Book Spotlight
Deatri King-Bey, Book Spotlight
Empi Baryeh, Book Spotlight
Eugenia O’Neal, First Date: 4 Clues That He’s Into You
IMRR Book Club, Sh*t My Heroes Say
JL Campbell, Book Spotlight
Kiru Taye, Book Spotlight
Long & Short Reviews, 4 Ways Romance Novels Ruined My Life
LV Lewis, Book Spotlight
MJ Kane, Book Spotlight
Nia Forrester, Book Spotlight
Romance Lives Forever, Interview
Romancing the Book, Book Spotlight
Romance Novels in Color, 4 Fun Ways to Jazz Up Your Book Club Meetings
Romance Junkies, Interview
Sharon Cooper, Interview
Synithia Williams, Sex is Not Just for the Bedroom
Use the share buttons below to tell a friend they can get The Blind Date for free from Amazon. Thank you!
I had to cancel the hop on my blog, but if you’d still like to participate, here’s the link to hop to the other blogs for a chance to win some awesome prizes.