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Archive for October 26th, 2010

Join us for a Danger Women Halloween Party. When: Oct. 27th, 10am until Midnight. Where: Danger Women Readers’ Loop. What: A day full of prizes and fun! www.dangerwomenwriting.com

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Dangerous Women


Party from 10am to midnight with a long list of prizes~!

Prizes include:

 

From Cynthia Eden:


2 copies of Eternal Flame
2 copies of Belong to the Night
2 copies of The Naughty List.

 

From Jennifer Haymore

 

2 copies of Highland Surrender
1 copy of 10 Days in Paradise
1 copy of A Hint of Wicked
1 copy of A Touch of Scandal
2 copies of A Season of Seduction

 

From Caridad Pineiro


2 copies of SINS OF THE FLESH
2 Copies of SOLDIER’S SECRET CHILD
2 STRONGER THAN SIN T-shirts
2 STRONGER THAN SIN Tote bags
2 THE CALLING baseball cap

From Donna Grant

 

2 copies DANGEROUS HIGHLANDER
2 copies FORBIDDEN HIGHLANDER
1 copy MUTUAL DESIRE
1 Dark Sword or Warrior tshirt
1 Dark Sword or Warrior bag

 

From Lisa Renee Jones


2 Copies of Awakening the Beast – the Nocturne anthology
2 Copies of Santa Baby by Lisa Renee Jones
2 Copies of the Sexy Beast 9 anthology
2 Copies of the Spice anthology Naughty Bits 2

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LIE WITH ME by Stephanie Tyler

Read an excerpt online

Book 1 of the Shadow Force series
Dell Books

ISBN-10: 0440245966
ISBN-13: 978-0440245964

Forced together by fate, bound together by desire.

Framed for a double murder, Delta Force operative Cameron Moore is given a new lease on life by the CIA—provided he pays them back by doing their black ops dirty work. Now Cam is ready to renegotiate their deal, and he thinks he’s found the perfect bargaining chip: Skylar Slavin, bestselling author of espionage thrillers and the daughter of the CIA man who saved him from a prison sentence.

Skylar has been living in anonymity, never suspecting that someone so dangerous—and so desirable—would plunge her into a world as treacherous as one of her spy novels. But how can Cam go through with his plan to kidnap Skylar when just the sight of her sets off an explosive attraction he’s never experienced before? And when Skylar falls prey to an even more perilous threat, this special ops soldier must call upon all his combat skills to protect the one person who can help him win his freedom—and the only woman he’s ever loved.

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TARNISHED KNIGHT by Shiloh Walker
Read An Excerpt Online
Genre: Paranormal Romance
ISBN: 978-1-60928-231-8
Length: Category
Price: 4.50
Publication Date: October 26, 2010
Cover art by Scott Carpenter

The mind forgets, but the body remembers. Everything.

Grimm’s Circle, Book 4

One look at Jack Wallace and Perci knows he’s going to be trouble. Even surrounded by soul stealers, he’s a one-man wrecking crew. What does he need Grimm training for? He’s already hell on earth, a warrior bent on destruction. And something…more.

He’s too strong and fast to be a mere mortal. Even covered in blood, he makes her forget she’s only here to do a job and get out. It’s twisted. Sick. She hasn’t felt this alive in three centuries.

Born with a natural talent for killing unnatural things, Jack has always known things he shouldn’t. The fact that Perci is one of them glows all over her. Giving him an unholy urge to see just how far he can push her before don’t touch me melts into touch me there.

When they come together, it isn’t careful or cautious. It’s heaven and hell, exposing all their raw and wounded places to healing heat, resurrecting memories of a destined love from the distant past. But the evil that destroyed them once before has tracked them here, threatening their second and last chance at forever. Demanding a sacrifice no one—Grimm or human—should ever be asked to make…

Warning: Dark, sexy, a little bit scary—this fairy tale is only for grownups and is best saved for bedtime.

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Their love could bring the most potent pleasure—or the darkest nightmare.

A danger to both the human and shadow communities, Petra Lang is cursed never to love. For one touch of her skin unleashes the vilest demons imaginable. Sentenced to death by the shadow authorities, who fear she’ll turn her curse against them, Petra is rescued at the last instant by vampire advocate Nicholas Montegue. As their bodies merge and transform into mist, Petra feels an urgent erotic longing.

Nicholas fought long and hard to save Petra—and nearly paid the ultimate price. He risked his own life to spare hers, yet he knows he can never give in to the explosive attraction he feels for her. But the deep yearning they share can only be deferred for so long. Together, they must find a way to lift the curse. For only a love this strong has the power to overcome such monstrous evil.

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Halloween is just around the corner!  It’s one of my favorite holidays, and this year, I’m enjoying it even more—we’re decorating like fiends, planning costumes for the kids, checking out local haunted houses, reading horror novels.  And, yes, watching lots of scary movies.

I recently read Clive Barker’s The Hellbound Heart, which is the novel upon which the movie Hellraiser is based.  And, of course, afterward I wanted to watch the movie, too, not only because it’s so very Halloween-y, but also to see how the adaptation was done (Barker wrote the script and directed the movie).  Bottom line—it’s a classic.  And while by today’s standards some of the things done in that movie might be considered tame, at the time, as Barker said in the accompanying documentary, it really pushed the envelope and broke through boundaries that had been set up in horror, both books and movies.

I liked what he said about pushing past boundaries, not only because I thought it was wise and interesting, but because I was searching for something to blog about today, and it clicked with me.  Because I’ve been pushing past personal boundaries with my Shadow Keepers series, going darker and edgier than I have with my previous Julie Kenner books, working to create stories that are compelling and suck the reader into the world.  I hope the awesome endorsements from authors I admire like Sherrilyn Kenyon, Kresley Cole, Larissa Ione, Lara Adrian and Gena Showalter, along with wonderful fan feedback, is some indication that I succeeded.  With the third book in the series that’s just hitting shelves, When Wicked Craves, I took a new approach to personal boundaries:  writing a love story between two people who can’t touch.  That’s not just a sexual thing, either, because as a relationship between two people grows, touch pushes it on and keeps it warm.  The brush of fingertips, then pushing back of a loose strand of hair.  Touch is a human connector, and although my characters may not be entirely human (a vampire and a human, albeit a witch), their hearts are, and as their relationship grew the inability to touch weighed upon them.

It weighed on Petra her whole life, the only exception to the curse being a very rare blue moon.  And I spent a great deal of time working with her character, finding a balance between the reality of someone forced to live without contact with other living creatures, but still making her appealing.  She could end up a shrew—instead, she’s one of my favorite heroines, spunky and appealing, and while not happy with her lot in life, she’s not sitting around bemoaning fate.  She’s out trying to find a cure.  And it’s that determination that thrusts her into the dangerous world of the Shadow Keepers.

Here’s an excerpt.  I hope you enjoy!

~~~*~~~*~~~

Her middle came back first, then her lungs, and she gasped in air, suddenly starved for oxygen.  Her arms and legs came next, and although she was aware that she was being put back together, it didn’t seem strange.  Probably because she’d never actually felt like she was apart.
She had no idea how much time had passed, and the small, windowless room gave her no additional information.
In front of her, Nicholas pulled off his hood, wincing as the movement irritated the knife wound in his chest.
“You’re bleeding.  Do you need…you know…to feed?”  As a private investigator in the shadow world, she’d worked with vampires for years, but that didn’t mean she understood the various ins-and-outs of their nature.  All she knew for sure was that he wouldn’t try to feed off of her–wouldn’t pull her close and press his lips to her neck.  Not unless he wanted to become the monster.
He didn’t even glance down at his wound.  “I’ll live.  How are you doing?  The mist can be disorienting for a human.”
The mist.  She remembered, except it wasn’t a memory so much as a dream, something wispy and unreal and utterly provocative.
They’d been twined together, body to body, blood to blood.  The only time her body–albeit not her flesh–had ever touched anyone other than her brother, and even with him she’d only held hands, and the pleasure of contact had been overshadowed by the torment of the blue moon.
Try as she might, she couldn’t recall anything specific about the contact with Nicholas, only the hint of sensation upon a breath of memory.  Her essence remembered, though, and the heat that coursed through her made her wish all the more that she’d been aware throughout the transformation.
“Petra?”
“I’m fine.  A little fuzzy,” she added, the lie meant to cover the burst of unfamiliar sensations.
“I apologize.  It’s not the ideal way for a human to travel.”
“You got me out of there.  I’m hardly going to question your methods.”
She squinted at him, suddenly intrigued by Nicholas as a man, and not merely an advocate.  For more than a month she’d met regularly with him as he’d briefed her case.  She’d noticed his good looks, because how could you not, and she’d been impressed by how damn smart he was.  But she’d never thought about what it would be like to touch him.  What would be the point?
Her life was her life, and she’d learned to live with it.  Having to go grocery shopping in the middle of the night when the crowds were thin.  Avoiding opening night at the movies.  The unyielding precautions, the constant awareness that even a gentle caress was impossible.  All part of the parcel that made up her life.
Most of the time she didn’t mind it.  Didn’t even think about it, really, except sometimes late at night, when she couldn’t sleep, and the dark stretched out in front of her.  That was when she wondered what it would be like to share her life with someone else, someone other than her brother.  Someone who’d chosen to be with her.  Who loved her.
Someone who could touch her, and whom she could touch back.
On those nights, she’d hug her pillow tight and think about what she did have.  A brother who loved her.  A house with a flower garden.  A job she was good at.
And a long list of sorcerers and witches to track down one by one, with the fervent hope that one could remove her curse.  Fight magic with magic.   Bury it.  Hide it.  Change it.  She didn’t care, as long as she was free of it.
So far, she’d found no one with magic strong enough to change her.
Until she did, she wouldn’t think about men.  What was the point?
That had been her creed since puberty–and although she sounded like a commercial for a fish without a bicycle philosophy, it really was the truth.  Men weren’t on her radar.  She hadn’t let them be on her radar.
Apparently today her radar had decided to fight back.
The mist.  The twining had awakened something in her, and she didn’t know how to shut down what was now churning inside her.  Honestly, she wasn’t sure she wanted to.
“Lie down,” he said, his brow knit with concern as he examined her face.  “You’re still disoriented from the poison and the transformation.”
She shook her head, determined to find her center.  “No.  I’m good.”  She lifted her eyes to meet his, felt a small shift in her gut, and pushed past it.  “Where are we?”
“Safe,” he said.  “Right now, that’s all you need to know.”
“Excuse me?”  Irritation bubbled inside, and she urged it on.  Annoyance and anger were familiar and easily handled.  “I’m happy to be alive, don’t get me wrong, but how do I know I didn’t just go from being their prisoner to being yours?”
“You’re not my prisoner,” he said.
“Fine. Then talk.”  There were about eight bazillion things she needed to know, not the least of which was how she was supposed to live once the entire weight of the Alliance pressed down on her.  Because they would come after her.  The Shadow world did not sit idly by after it was screwed.  And Nicholas Montegue and Petra Lang had just screwed them big time.  “At least let me get in touch with my brother.  Everything else can wait.”  It was a simple request, and one she expected he’d grant easily.
He didn’t.
“Later.”  He nodded toward a cot that stood in the corner, a blanket folded neatly on top.  “I need to see to things.  Wait here.”
“I don’t think so.” She moved forward, intending to get past him, to get out of this tiny little room that was only slightly less claustrophobic than the holding cell she’d so recently been occupying.
He reached for her, and she jerked away instinctively, realizing as she did that his hands were still gloved, and she was still covered head-to-toe in the prison issued body suit.
“Dammit,” she said, that stupid, knee-jerk reaction twisting her up inside more than it should.  But it wasn’t just the fact that she’d flinched.  It had been one long, horrible, emotionally trying day, which even though it ended up pretty damn awesome in that she was still alive, was still freaky enough to mess with her head.
Yes, she was beyond thrilled to have been rescued, but she wasn’t a woman who hid in dark rooms, and she sure as hell didn’t want to be someone else’s burden.  She’d played that role her whole life, too, and although she knew that Kiril loved her, the fact that their grandmother had bound her twin to her–made him her protector until the curse was lifted–troubled her more than she had ever confessed to him.
She drew a breath, steadied herself, and decided to try the fly and honey approach.  “You could have told me, you know.  Doesn’t seem fair I spent all of last night thinking that I’d be pushing up daisies right about now.”  She meant the words, but she said them with a smile and a lilt to her voice.  No accusation there.  Just friendly and chatty.  She knew how to charm.  It was one of the reasons she was good at her job.
“If I’d told you, they would have changed execution theaters at the very least.  Worst case scenario they would have pumped poison into your holding cell. As soon as the Truth Teller latched onto even a hint of trouble, you’d be dead, and this would be all over.”
“And what is this exactly?”
“Sergius.”
She frowned, thinking of the vampire she’d destroyed.  “What about him?”
“He’s alive.”
The hair on the back of her neck prickled, and she sat gingerly on the edge of the cot.  “Oh, dear God.”  She drew in a breath, her thoughts a wild rush.  “But how?  There was a fire.  I heard all about it.  The ME confirmed that Serge died in a warehouse fire.”
“Staged,” Nicholas said.  “Luke and I took some of his flesh and we burned the place.  He’s here, Petra.  But he’s not really Serge anymore.”
She swallowed.  “You saved me because you’re looking for a cure.”
“A rose for the lady.”
She drew her fingers through her hair and concentrated on the floor.  “But I already told you during the hearing prep that I don’t know how to lift the curse.  Hell, I told him the same thing before I touched him.”
Her words were absolutely, one-hundred percent true.  But what she didn’t say was equally true.  She might not know how to lift the curse and free her to touch without harm, but she did know how to cure Sergius.
Sergius would be free the moment that she was dead.
But no way in hell was she telling Nicholas that.  He might have the face of an angel, but at the core he was a vampire.  And a vampire wouldn’t think twice about killing to get what he wanted.
She stifled a shiver, then looked up to meet his eyes.  “There’s no way, Nicholas.  I’m sorry, but there’s just no way.”
“I refuse to believe that,” he said.  “As should you.”  He took a step toward her, and she forced herself not to recede.  “Think about it.  I was born more than seven centuries ago.  You escaped death after your body dissipated into mist.  And once upon a time, men without so much as a compass climbed into small wooden boats and sailed across oceans.  We’ll find the answer, Petra.”

~~~*~~~*~~~

I hope you enjoy!  Learn more or just hang out at www.theshadowkeepers.com, www.jkbeck.com, www.twitter.com/jkbeck or http://www.facebook.com/authorjkbeck

So how about y’all?  What would you miss the most if you couldn’t touch another human?

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A big thank you to J.K. Beck for visiting with us today. To be entered to win a copy of WHEN WICKED CRAVES, just leave a comment answering the above question. Good luck! 😀

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