Aug 28, 2013

Hyde by Laura DeLuca

Genre: Young Adult

Hyde, Dark Musicals Book #3

Rebecca Hope has looked death in the face twice and lived to tell her tale.

She and the love of her life, Justyn Patko, land a summer internship at a local dinner theater, performing the musical Hyde. While they are excited about their first paid acting gig, they soon find themselves surrounded by more experienced cast mates, jealous of their success. As if the tension isn’t bad enough, they soon discover that the business might be a front for something much more sinister.

When Justyn is accused of a crime that she knows he would never commit, Rebecca must decide if she wants to follow her head or her heart. While trying to prove his innocence, she makes a shocking discovery of her own.

Everyone has something to conceal in the grand finale of the Dark Musicals Trilogy. Rebecca has to look beyond the façade to discover the true Hyde or face her final curtain call.


The act ended with Hyde grabbing hold of a scantily dressed Lucy and pulling her into his arms. Then the lights on the stage were extinguished, and the silent crowd suddenly burst into thunderous applause—even some of the cast was clapping. Rebecca couldn’t help but notice Steve was watching the fanfare with a frown, especially when Fernando, dressed for the next scene as the butler, clapped Justyn on the back with undisguised approval and pride. Rebecca had the distinct feeling Steve was plotting something sinister and definitely Hyde-worthy.

From that point on, Justyn scarcely had a moment out of the spotlight. Rebecca didn’t even get a chance to tell him how fabulous he was. It felt as though the show had only begun when Rebecca found herself decked out in the splendid Victorian wedding gown signaling the final act was about to begin. The dress came complete with realistic bell sleeves, an excessive bustle, and a long, flowing trail embroidered with delicate lace. The elaborate wardrobes and happy wedding guests gave the audience the illusion that it might be a happy ending after all, but for Dr. Jekyll and Emma, that wasn’t meant to be. As soon as the reverend began to recite the vows, Hyde made his final deadly appearance.

At the beginning of the scene, it was sweet and romantic. Justyn started out holding her hand, looking happy, almost ecstatic to be with his true love. Then he suddenly started to sway. Tom, in his role of John, the best man, tried to steady him, but there wasn’t anything he could do to stop the transformation. Dr. Jekyll doubles over in agony and tries to run before Emma can see him change into a monster. Justyn was supposed to head toward the back of the stage where Rebecca would pursue him and eventually become Hyde’s captive. But they should have known no opening night could ever go exactly as planned, especially when it was obvious at least half the cast was out to get them.

Just as Justyn stumbled across the stage, Steve, who was blending in with the other guests on the sidelines, stuck out his foot. It was doubtful anyone else observed the sabotage, aside from Petya, who was smirking at her husband’s side. But Rebecca was at the perfect vantage point to see the intentional attack. Unfortunately, Justyn was so wrapped up in the role he didn’t notice the danger, especially since his loose hair was dangling in front of his eyes. Before Rebecca could cry out a warning, Justyn’s foot was caught in the snare. With a grunt, he tumbled off the side of the stage. Even over the background music and the gasps from the audience, Rebecca heard the loud thump as he hit the ground. She raised her hands to her mouth and couldn’t help but scream.

Buy Links:    Amazon      Smashwords    Barnes &Noble

Phantom, Dark Musicals Book #1

The “Phantom” was a musical phenomenon that Rebecca had always found enchanting. She had no idea that her life was about to mirror the play that was her obsession. When her high school drama club chooses “Phantom” as their annual production, Rebecca finds herself in the middle of an unlikely love triangle and the target of a sadistic stalker who uses the lines from the play as their calling card.

Rebecca lands the lead role of Christine, the opera diva, and like her character, she is torn between her two co-stars—Tom the surfer and basketball star who plays the lovable hero, and Justyn, the strangely appealing Goth who is more than realistic in the role of the tortured artist.

Almost immediately after casting, strange things start to happen both on and off the stage. Curtains fall. Mirrors are shattered. People are hurt in true phantom style. They all seem like accidents until Rebecca receives notes and phone calls that hint at something more sinister. Is Justyn bringing to life the twisted character of the phantom? Or in real life are the roles of the hero and the villain reversed? Rebecca doesn’t know who to trust, but she knows she’s running out of time as she gets closer and closer to opening night. Only when the mask is stripped away, will the twenty first century phantom finally be revealed.

Buy Links: Amazon    Smashwords     Barnes & Noble

Demon, Dark Musicals Book #2

When Justyn and Rebecca set off for the New York School of Performing Arts, they think their dreams are about to come true. To their dismay, they aren’t in high school anymore, and the competition is steep. Rebecca must compete against accomplished singers for a role in the production of Demon Barber, including a stunning Gothic diva with her sights set on Justyn.

It doesn't help that things keep disappearing from their apartment or that Rebecca's father refuses to accept that Justyn is an essential part of her life. Yet, all this seems minimal in comparison to the serial rapist terrorizing the campus.

Consumed by fear and obsessed with revenge, Rebecca and Justyn start living the story of Sweeney Todd—both on and off the stage.

 Buy Links: Amazon    Smashwords   Barnes & Noble 

Laura “Luna” DeLuca lives at the beautiful Jersey shore with her husband and four children. She loves writing in the young adult genre because it keeps her young at heart.  In addition to writing fiction, Laura is also the editor of a popular review blog called New Age Mama. She is an active member of her local pagan community, and has been studying Wicca for close to eight years.  Her current works include Destiny, Destiny Unveiled, Phantom, Morrigan, Player, and Demon.

Author Links:  Website      Facebook      Twitter     Goodreads      

Laura is giving away a signed copy of Phantom, Geode, Incense, sterling silver pentacle charm, natural stone pendant, crystal point, and Lavender Purification Bath Salts.

This is for US residents only!

The Right Kind of Wrong

Genre: Romance

 Rags and Riches Series Book 3

Maybe only someone who's been behind bars can understand how to set her free.

Fresh out of jail, Jamie Pierce is desperate to change his ways and become a better person. He wants to earn enough money to get out of London for good and live a quiet life somewhere in the country. But then he meets Harriet Jones, a beautiful young fashion designer who is plagued by self-doubt, and suddenly leaving doesn't seem so simple.

Harriet has spent years trying to win her father's affection, but time and time again she's been left feeling that she just isn't good enough. When she starts to fall for her rough-around-the-edges neighbor, she knows her father would never approve.

It was only meant to be a fling, but maybe the person who seems so wrong for her could be just the kind of person she needs. Can Jamie help Harriet learn to believe in herself, or will she remain trapped in her own prison of self-doubt?

Content Warning: explicit sex


"I guess that's a hint for me to go." Jamie sighed. "Shame, I was enjoying myself."

He hopped off the stool, and despite the rising panic about her work, Harriet felt a warm glow at his words. "Really?"

"Geez, don't sound so surprised. Why wouldn't I be enjoying myself in the company of a beautiful woman?" Jamie stared down at her with that burning, intense gaze of his.

Harriet squirmed. Years of being criticized had made her unable to take a compliment. "I'm not beautiful."

She broke her gaze away from his, and looked back at her work. Work was what she knew, what she understood, not compliments and looks of strange, gorgeous men whom she had invited into her home with no real idea why.

She felt his fingers under her chin, lifting her face so that she had to look back up at him. Even though she resisted slightly, his fingers were firm.

"You are the most beautiful woman I've ever met," Jamie told her, and he looked so serious.

Harriet wanted to believe it. But she knew she wasn't beautiful.

"Can I kiss you again?" There was a fleeting moment of indecision in his eyes, like maybe he shouldn't, but all Harriet wanted was for him to kiss her again.

"Yes." Her voice was trembling. There were so many reasons why she should have said no. But she wanted this. She wanted Jamie.

His eyes fixed on hers until his soft lips found hers. Harriet savored his gentle kiss this time, marveling at his skill to ignite a passion within her that she wasn't even sure she had. When he pulled away, Harriet was left breathless.

"You seem nervous," Jamie said, taking her hand, which was physically shaking.

"I…I haven't touched a man since my husband and I separated," Harriet admitted.

Jamie's eyebrows shot up in surprise. "You seem too young to have been married already."

"Yes, well, it didn't work out," Harriet said bitterly. She looked away, trying to push down the emotions that threatened to resurface—rejection, abandonment, the feeling of never being good enough. But she was good at controlling the pain by now; she'd been doing it ever since she was a child.

"I'm sorry." The fire between them was in danger of fizzling out as they stood there awkwardly, but then Jamie kissed her hand. "Anybody would be a fool to leave you."

Jamie pulled her closer and started kissing her again. He tasted of beer, and Harriet hated the taste usually, but like with everything else, he made the wrong seem so right, and she loved it.

She kissed him like she couldn't get enough. Boldly, Harriet raised her hands up to cup his face, the beginnings of stubble feeling grainy against her palms. She was more turned on than she could ever remember. Harriet pulled away, suddenly nervous. It wasn't like her to do things like this, and it scared her just how much she wanted it.

"It's okay, we don't have to take this any further. We don't really know each other," Jamie said a little breathlessly.

Harriet tried to hide her disappointment, but she knew he was right, and she wasn't the kind of girl to be this forward.

"But I'm up for it if you are." Jamie's voice was more serious, and his words sent waves of desire through her body.

Given her tendency to overthink things into inaction, she decided to let her body take over. There were a hundred reasons why she shouldn't do this, but she was going to go with the one reason she should—she wanted to.

Buy Links:    Beachwalk Press

Rags and Riches Series Book 2

A choice between two men? If only it were that simple.

Melissa Morgan seems to have it all…her modeling career is taking off and she's engaged to one of the most eligible bachelors in London. But when she finds Jonathan cheating on her again, Melissa finds solace in the arms of Riley, a sexy bar owner trying to recover from the heartbreak of his last relationship. Melissa shouldn't even want Riley, but she can't seem to stay away, especially when she finds in him everything that's missing in her relationship with Jonathan.

Melissa knows she has to make a hard choice, and when it comes to choosing between the life she's always wanted and the man she's falling in love with, she might find out that she can't have the best of both worlds.

Rags and Riches Series Book 1

Can mixing business and pleasure ever result in a happy ending?

When sexy, rich Lawrence Russo asks Mia to come and work for him in Italy for two weeks, she jumps at the chance. After all, it beats pole dancing, and the salary he offers her is practically obscene.

A relationship quickly begins to develop between the two, but Mia can't help but wonder if Lawrence's feelings for her are genuine or if he feels he's just paying for a service.

Even if their relationship is strong enough to survive her insecurities, what will happen when somebody from her past shows up and threatens to reveal her deepest, darkest secret?

I have always believed that the best stories are the ones that you can't put down, the ones that transport you to a different place and make you believe in the characters. This is exactly why I write… I have always loved the escapism that reading and writing provides, and there is nothing more exciting than imagining your own set of characters, and then letting them practically write the story for you. Writing has always been a dream of mine, and I'm lucky to have the kind of people around me that have always nurtured and encouraged my passion.

I live a cozy little life in Wales, and when I'm not writing I'm taking care of my young family, studying for a degree in Classical Studies, and training to become a nail technician. I love traveling to new places, meeting new people, and experiencing new things…it's all great inspiration for my books!

Author Links:   Site      Facebook     Twitter 

Aug 27, 2013

Spanish Flame by Patricia Bates

Genre: Romance

Can an ex-con and a Spanish noblewoman find love?

Ex-convict, Adam Butler, is a man hardened by betrayal and violence. When he lands in Spain, his only intention is to find a paying job so he can buy his way further west, far away from the memories of his past.

Wealthy and beautiful Evangelina Ortega yearns for the ability to marry for love even as her father is forcing her to wed a man she's never met. When she arrives at her betrothed's estate, she meets Adam Butler, a man with secrets and a checkered past.

Can the Spanish lady and the ex-con find happiness or will their love be destroyed by her father's determination to regain the family honor?

Note: This book was previously published under the title In the Hands of a Stranger, but it has been substantially revised.


Adam glanced behind him at the sound of hooves on stone and watched the elegant carriage roll to a halt in front of the main house. Black, trimmed with gold, the exterior of the coach gleamed in the rapidly sinking sun. The doors were covered in intricately gilded patterns of silver and gold, and pale curtains fluttered in the breeze.

The team that pulled it matched the rig—six midnight black horses pranced in their harness as the doorman climbed down and set a step by the door to allow the passengers to disembark. Adam watched as the door opened and a young man of maybe thirteen hopped out, followed by a young woman a couple of years older. She was dressed in gray traveling garb, and her long, full skirts dusted the ground as she walked. Around her head white lace crested and fluttered with each movement of her head.

Adam felt his breath catch when a dark-haired beauty stepped out of the carriage. The long, intricate lace veil she wore covered her elaborately styled hair but did little to hide the ebony strands. Rounded with delicate cheekbones, and a high upturned nose, her face was flawless, beautiful—unlike any other woman's he'd ever seen. Her olive complexion was so different from the aboriginal women his father had employed.

He shivered as her eyes lifted away from her older companion and met his. With the force of a kangaroo kick, attraction slammed into him. He inhaled, frozen, unable or unwilling to break eye contact. Her eyes widened a degree, and he saw her plump lips part in a soundless gasp before she ducked her head, a wave of pink staining her cheeks.

He glanced away as he walked toward the team. He wasn't the son of an affluent man here; there was no room for anything between them, not now. As Adam strode forward to hold the horses, he caught the look of disparagement, the lack of emotion in the depths of the older gentleman's eyes. Adam stared at the wealthy, distinguished man for a moment then began to unhitch the wheeler.

"You will do well," the man said, venom lacing his words, "to keep your distance. A criado has no place near royalty." The well-dressed gentleman stared down at him, condescension in his eyes.

Adam lifted his head to glare at the self-important man. "Señor, welcome to Los Santiago Hacienda."

Buy Link:  Beachwalk Press

Reading has been such a large part of my life. I cut my literary teeth on such authors as Louis L'Amour, Nora Roberts and Janet Dailey. For me it wasn't such a jump from reading the wonderful tales these authors spun to imagining my own.

Soon I was writing poetry, short stories and by junior high I'd written my first full length romance novel. Since then I've taken my love of history and my passion for writing and combined them into what I hope will continue to prove a successful career.

With six books contracted, four of which are currently available in print. All are available in electronic format with the last two ebooks due for a release in May and the other in the summer. I'm currently working on three projects, an erotic paranormal romance featuring a witch who loves Christmas, another Ancient Ireland novel, rich in the history of the Irish Celtic peoples, and plotting out a Cowboy Series tentatively titled "The James Gang".

Of course I've got a lot more on the go. I'm developing and growing my editing company with some amazing authors, working on polishing my concepts and plans for upcoming books within the paranormal genres, and keeping up on my writing and being a full time mom, working outside of the house…it's amazing what one can manage in a 16 hour day.

Author Links:  Site     Twitter    Facebook

Aug 22, 2013

Stolen Moments by Tara Mills

Genre: Romance

Ella knew what Neil wanted when he called, what they both wanted. Did she dare? Was an hour of passion worth the lies, broken commitments, and the risk of getting caught? Yes.


Acutely aware she was the only woman in the place, she felt every set of eyes track her walk through the bar. Leaving several stools between herself and the next patron, she hung her purse off the back and used the rung under the chair to hop up onto the elevated seat. The bartender sauntered her way and Ella made her hushed request, "White wine, please."

He had to uncork a new bottle but she was relieved to see it was a decent California label.

Now she waited, sipping her wine. The negligible amount of calm she'd possessed when she walked in here faded with a self-conscious whimper. She glanced at the door then at her phone once again, checking the time and warring with herself about calling him. The more uncomfortable she got, the more she kicked her toe against the foot rail. Unfortunately, the sound drew the attention of a couple of patrons as well as the bartender. She hooked her heel over the stool support below. It was the only way to keep from fidgeting.

Ella felt exposed and out of her element sitting in a place like this, nice as it was, at two o’clock on a weekday afternoon. She wanted to fold herself up small enough to hide out in her purse, but that wasn’t going to happen. The minutes stretched on and her anxiety over being approached by one of these men increased. She sent out a silent mental message to those in the room. Just leave me alone. Ignore me. I’m not here.

A subtle brush, very faint across her back, made her turn. The warm body and even warmer smile on the handsome face gazing down on her caused Ella’s heart to start beating in double time. She breathed a big sigh of relief.

Neil looked too good for words.

He casually drew his hand over the back of her chair, his finger teasing her as it skimmed across her shoulder blades. His smile deepened when she let out a soft, involuntary moan.

“I hoped you’d come. You look beautiful, Ella.” He slid onto the stool next to her.

She felt the heat of her blush, the pounding of her heart. “You know I can’t stay long. I shouldn’t have come in the first place. Neither should you. What are we doing? If anyone sees me I don’t how I could possibly explain this.”

“I understand your fear.” He covered her hand and gave it a squeeze. “We’ll be careful. You need to trust me. Try to relax.”

"I’m trying. I am. It’s just ... the more we do this, the more chances we take that someone is going to find out."

She looked down at Neil’s hand, conscious of the weight, the strength in it resting over her own. Oh god, she was going to waver. She knew she would. She always did—but only for him. All he had to do was ask.

Then it came, his low, seductive invitation. “Stay with me, please? Give me an hour.”

I write stories I like to read--contemporary romances with identifiable characters and themes.  Life is hard.  Love makes it bearable. If you enjoy stories with heat and humor, I have a title for you.

I'm a pampered wife, lucky mom to three amazing sons and one wonderful daughter-in-law, and I recently became a very young grandma. I should probably underline the word very.  Oh heck, why not the word young too?  Nah, you get the picture.  I'm also the daily monitor of one naughty dog with attitude.

Author Links:  Site    Facebook      Twitter

Join Tara Mills on August 24th at 8PM EST at Crimson Frost Books Discussion Group on Facebook

Aug 21, 2013

The Legacy of the RedCape Women by Zerlina Valinski

When Tasia discovers her ancestry is tied to the mountains of North Carolina, she's shocked but elated. Finally, she thinks she may have found what she's missed all her Reaching her ancestral home however, leads her into the path of an Alpha shifter...and secrets some never want revealed.

Conal is the Alpha wolf, and the local law, still more than his interest is peaked when he sees the bedraggled woman sitting in his spot. He feels torn over leading her to her grandmother's this the beginning of their story? Or will the past destroy their future?


The door swung open and in stepped the biggest man Taisa had ever seen. The plaid button down shirt he wore clung to his broad shoulders.  He raked the wet hair back from his forehead, his clothes soaked.  His dark gaze swept the room before landing on her.   

“Who’s he?” Tasia gulped down her water. Her unease was swiftly back. 

“He’s our Al…Sheriff.  He eats here every night and you’re in his spot.” 

“Oh. Should I move?”

“Don't let him bluster you too bad, he's a nice guy. I’ll be back with your dinner.”  Julia was out of the booth before the Sheriff reached them.  Tasia was sure Julia was escaping something, but she just couldn't figure out what.  

“You’re sitting in my spot.” The bear of a man towered over her.  His voice was so deep it vibrated through her.  “Who the hell are you anyway?  Is your car parked out front?  In my spot, I might add.”

“Well, one of the cars is mine, not sure where your spot is though.” 

“The one with a hungry dog in the back seat.”

“I’ll take care of her when I’m done eating.  You don’t need to worry.  She’s well loved.”

“I guess, I can smell the dog all over you.”  He made a sniffing sound then glared at her.

“Right.  Listen, I’ll move as soon as I eat my meal.  But, you’re welcome to sit across from me.  If you can stand the dog smell.” She grinned up at him.  Tasia felt challenged, she did not like it.  She was never one to cower when her ire was up.   Foster care had taught her to be tough, resilient.  Although, this man made her feel dwarfed, but her instinct told her not to flinch.  When you flinch, you’re vulnerable.   I’m an idiot.  I should get out of his way.  She leaned her neck back to look up at him.  “Go ahead, have a seat.” She motioned to the other side of the booth.  “We can share.  I don’t bite.  And if I smell like a dog.  I have been traveling all day with Bella, a she’s a German shepherd.  She can’t help how she smells.” 
 “You don’t bite?”  He chuckled, the brusque manner fading.  “To bad.” He scooted into the bench across from her with the lithe grace of a wolf.

Crimson Frost Books Link                 Cover Art by Suzie's Designs

I am Zerlina Valinski. I am weaver of tales of sensual erotic romance. My stories will take you to places you have never been. You will see fantastic places and people. I will tantalize you with stories of Weres, Shape shifters, Witches, Warlocks, Fairies, Imps, pagan gods and goddesses and more mystical creatures. I will invite you into their sensual worlds where they don't shy away from the carnal as humans do. They indulge their passion and they love without mortal confines of the human mind.

I invite you to partake in these sensual adventures. They will keep your interest.

The world is old and there are many beings here. Human's ignorance doesn't eliminate this reality. Humans are frozen in their ways, their beliefs. But not the creatures of old, they're fully aware of the hidden world around us. Come with me to meet them and see their domains. To live with them and to love with them. 

Author Links:  Site     Facebook    Twitter

Join Zerlina Valinski on August 24th at 8PM EST at Crimson Frost Books Discussion Group on Facebook

Aug 20, 2013

11 Month Inn by Mac Rome

Genre: Romance

Lost on the Appalachian Trail, Carl Baker finds a hidden cabin called the 11 Month Inn. Inside he meets beautiful women ranging from small to towering, and finds his feelings growing fast for petite, sexy and lonely Rue. But as he learns more about the inn’s residents and their mystical secret, Carl faces a difficult choice. Does he leave without Rue to return to the life he’s known, or stay with her and leave his world behind?

Carl came to the edge of a clearing. Before him was a log cabin – a huge log cabin. It was two stories tall. There were three windows across the top floor and two on either side of the door at the center of the front. There also was a large, wrap-around porch with a roof. The timber, while weathered, appeared to be from native trees.

Carl quickly realized why the light he’d seen appeared to be from a campfire. It was firelight, but from various sources. Inside he could see candles through three windows and a kerosene lantern through a fourth. Fireplaces could be seen in the remaining two windows.

As he approached, Carl spotted a small sign to the right of the door, made of the same wood as the cabin. It read, “11 Month Inn.”

Although he hadn’t planned to stay at any kind of hostel or motel, this was too appealing to Carl. He walked onto the porch.

Then he spotted her. She was peering through a ground-floor window at him. She had a heart-shaped face and beautiful red hair. Her complexion was pale, and her eyes ice-blue. Those big eyes were staring at Carl, looking amazed. He could tell she was tiny. Even so, the window was so low she was forced to lean over, the scoop neck of her blouse revealed ample breasts for her size.

Carl stopped and waved. He wanted to appear friendly to whoever was here – and especially to this petite beauty.
She stood up straight, showing off a tiny waist and a butt just round enough to be magnificent. Her left hand to her chest, she waved with her right. Then she ran backward into the room.

After a few seconds, Carl heard the groan of old hinges in front of him. The tiny woman had opened the door. She beamed up at him. “Hello.”

“Hi,” Carl replied. “I saw your sign. Do you have any rooms?”

The woman shifted her weight onto one foot, looking up at Carl. She nodded. “There’s always a room here. Come on in.”

Carl entered. “I’m sorry I don’t have a reservation.”

“That’s okay,” the woman answered. “No one has a reservation except those of us who live here.”

Carl grinned. “I’m Carl Baker.”

The woman held out her hand. “I’m Rue.”

Crimson Frost Books Link         Cover Art by Nekkid Designs

Mac Rome is a lifelong resident of the Great Lakes region of the United States. He’s experienced life in the Appalachian foothills, along the Ohio river and in the flatlands of the former Great Black Swamp, and in large cities, small towns and rural areas. He’s a student of ancient lore and mythology and a lover of cultural exploration, history and dialects. He writes fantasy, science fiction and romance.

 Author Links:  Site     Blog        Facebook      Twitter 

Join Mac Rome on August 24th at 8PM EST at Crimson Frost Books Discussion Group on Facebook

Aug 19, 2013

Mystique Rogue by Diane Taylor

Genre: Paranormal/Romance

Scarred and cynical, Carmen Marshall and her security team are hired to protect master Illusionist The Rogue, and his white tiger. What should be a simple case of protecting a client is made even harder by the mysteries surrounding him, and the very real danger of someone wanting him dead.

With both The Rogue and his tiger proving to be more then they seem, an unknown enemy, and a powerful desire haunting her, Carmen's job is proving more of a challenge than she'd ever imagined. Will the flames of passion burn to ashes, or will they consume all involved.


Carmen grunted. "Divvy up the bonus equally between the four and put my usual fee in the bank. I don't need the bonus and these guys do. Now, what else have you got on your list of clients that you're planning to foist on me, in my innocence?" 

"Innocent, my ass. Miss Marshall you're the least innocent woman I know." Daria shuffled her papers on the desk, then looked up at the video camera. "What do you know of The Rogue?"

Carmen shrugged. "He's a master of illusion. No one knows what he looks like underneath his mask, which makes him somewhat of a forbidden fruit to the female persuasion. Those who have tried to come on to him have gone away either pissed off or in tears.  Those who have claimed to have slept with him aren't believed. The ones which are rebuffed proceed to slander and smear his name, which is really useless because he never responds to bullshit like that unless it really gets messy, then the person responsible gets a talking to." She made quotation marks in the air with her fingers. "Rumors run thick and fast about what's underneath the mask. They run the entire range of being horribly disfigured to just an affectation so he can go out into public with it off and not be recognized." She smiled slightly at Daria, "The rest of the rumors are just too outrageous to think about."

"Anything else, Oh Great Abundance of Wisdom?" Her boss grinned.

She smiled and took another drink of her coffee before responding. "Flattery will get you everywhere, Daria Randall. As a matter of fact, the tabloids and the internet have commented that his crew and stage hands are very tight lipped. Even his manager won't spill the beans about the props or how his illusions are done, no matter how much money is offered. More than a few people have attempted some of his more dangerous stunts, trying to duplicate and or improve on them."

Carmen arched an eyebrow and looked meaningfully at her boss. "With very fatal results. At the beginning of each performance, everyone is warned not to try these stunts. They make the statement which basically says anyone attempting them is doing so under the full knowledge they were warned ahead of time."

Daria nodded, "Well, according to his manager, someone's trying to sabotage his performances and possibly turn him into an illusion, permanently. From what I've read in the report I have on my desk, all the mistakes have been caught before the actual stunt was performed. But the manager wants to find out what in hell is going on and put a stop to these incidents before something really does go wrong. He's paid double the usual fee, wanting to ensure you and your team will personally handle the assignment. He said The Rogue has specifically asked for you, saying he wishes a face to face meeting before he signs any agreement."

Carmen's eyes widened. "You know my rule on that, Daria. It's held true and every client has agreed to it. If he wants a video conference, we can arrange a time and place.  But I do not meet face to face."

"Oh come on, you can do it just this once." Daria's eyes widened and became pleading on the video screen. "If he doesn't meet you in person, he won't sign the contract. When I mentioned your rule, he said, and I quote, 'If this woman is afraid of me, then perhaps you should fire her and hire more men. At least they aren't afraid to meet face to face.'"

Crimson Frost Books Link       Cover Art by Nekkid Designs

Aug 16, 2013

Touched by L.M. David

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Preston Ciora has ruled over the Western Vampyre clans for centuries, though not by his choice. He works the streets as a homicide detective by day. At night he dishes out  justice within the vampyre community.
Nine hundred years since his sire and life-mate died, Preston remains emotionally scarred and alone.
A series of grisly murders rattles those under his protection and threatens to expose his ilk to the mortal world. All evidence points to a delusional vampyre who is in league with an ancient shape-shifter—who has an agenda of his own.
To make matters worse, a strange woman tells Preston he will find love in the arms of a fire-breathing hellion named Lindsey. Despite his efforts to defy the foretelling, Preston finds himself embroiled in a tense war to win her heart—a battle he is intent on losing

My never-ending dream usually began this way
His skin felt like electricity crawling over it like scattering ants. He clawed at malnourished flesh as if trying to shed body cover; he wears tattered, second-hand clothes and lives in a place suffused in shadow. He vacates a room, destroys whatever rests in his path. Voices whisper behind closed, locked doors when he moves along the hall. Those unlocked were latched … the click drawing his attention and infuriated him.
Outside, he slammed the door in his wake. The night fails to soothe his bitter nature but he lets the silence rule. Behind him, he perceived a sigh of relief from those still inside the house.
Someone thought: Perhaps something in the night will devour him…
Did they not know he heard their thoughts?
The pale, gnomish man trembles with bridled rage. Turning, he breaks, yells at the top of his lungs, “Rot in hell, all of you!”
The dream settled yet his bitter presence continued to smother me.
History, this vile creature thinks, has repeated itself—once revered for bestowing immortality’s kiss, his converts now plot to overthrow him. Insurrections bore him. And traitors deserved no mercy.
The man turned, stared at the night shadows. His head throbs, pain severe enough to drop him to his knees. He strikes himself about the temple in the hope it would offer relief.
It did not.
Who was he? He wondered. Julius. Yes, his name …
Come …” the voice beckoned again, louder.
Lips drawn tight in a sneer, he crouched, prepared to fight.
J…uliu…sss.” The voice surrounded him on a strong current of chilled air.
“Show yourself!” Julius screams at the night.
Hearing nothing, he stumbled across the uneven dirt surface aiming for a mountain range ahead. It took a while but he finally located what he sought—a crevice leading into the foothills. The passage is narrow but he maneuvered easily, the only sound is gravel crunching beneath his worn out shoes.
The path opened into a large cave, illuminated with a faint glow where no light should be. Something indistinct vacillated in a dark shadow—a willowy shape then emerged into the faint afterglow shrouded in a cloak; the garment hood pulled close exposing only a brown, knotty chin. “At last, we meet.” It greeted.
“Who, what are you?” Julius demanded in a low, taut growl.
“One who walked thousands of years before the Nazarene,” It answered—something under the cloak behind it twitched—“I am Thad…de…ussss.”

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About the Author:
L.M. David has been writing novels since Jr. High school. Originally drawn to the genre of Science Fiction, she developed a fascination with paranormal/urban fantasy/romance, attracted to the dark erotic world of vampires which sparked a deep interest with the folklore and legends.
L.M. is an avid reader and in her spare time builds computers, quilts and makes jewelry. She has worked as a legal assistant and now as an insurance medical biller and coder. Born in New Jersey, she relocated to California and now considers herself a Southern Californian.
Author Links:  Site     Facebook    Twitter

Aug 14, 2013

The Cliff by Christie A.C. Gucker

Gere: Romance

Can a childhood pact affect the lives of three adults?
Love and betrayal surrounds the lives of lifelong friends Lanie Rhodes, Grant Bennett, and Dane Voight. Years ago, they made a pact to remain together as friends forever. The boys also made another secret pact that same day—to never vie for Lanie’s love.
Grant and Lanie have secretly been pining for one another since they were children.
Now grown up, they finally admit their feelings for each other and what ensues is a twisted tale of deception as Dane does everything he can to stop them.
The story weaves around this uneven love triangle. What will happen to the pact? Will friendships be destroyed? Will lovers emerge?


My phone beeped.  I just stared at it.  It was Samantha.

“Dane, Samantha is calling. I have to answer,” I said very nonchalantly.

“Fine.  Hurry back.”  Now he was getting annoyed with my blasé attitude.

“Hi Samantha.”

“Lanie, turn the news on, now!”

“Why?  What the hell could possibly…”

“Turn it on!”

I turned on the news channel to breaking news and almost threw up.  Plane crash, and it had departed from our airport, more details to come.

“Samantha!  I have to go.  I have to go call the airline.”

“What flight was he on?  They haven’t said what airline or flight yet.”

“I’ll call you back.  I switched lines.  “Dane, get over here now.  There’s been a plane crash.  I need all of Grant’s flight info.  Now.  Get over here now!”

“I was panicking.  I couldn’t breathe.  I knew it.  I’d known it all along.  It wasn’t the client that was bothering me.  It was the flight.  I never should have let him leave.

“Lanie, Grant left hours ago.  I’m sure it’s not his plane.”

“Dane, get your ass over here with everything you have.  Don’t question me.  Do it.”  I hung up the phone.  I unlocked the front door and headed to my office to check the Internet.

I started my computer and heard Dane coming running up the stairs.

“I have everything.  Go to Eclipse Airline’s website.”

I got to the site and immediately saw the alert on their home page.  My stomach knotted and I felt the color drain from my face.  I started to hyperventilate.

“It’s his airline.  It’s his.  Oh my God, Dane.  Oh my God.”

“Lanie, hold on.  They’re the major airline out of our airport.  There were lots of flights leaving today.  I’m going to read you his flight info.  Did they post a manifest yet?”

“No, just the flight number.”

“He was on flight 3” – Oh shit! Oh shit! I was starting to gag.  I was holding my breath.

“4” – No, no, this can’t be happening…

“7” –  I just stared at the screen.  I thought I had died.  My body went cold; I couldn’t move.  My heart shattered into a thousand pieces.  No sounds could escape my lips, because there was no air in my lungs.  My eyes started to burn and I couldn’t focus on the screen anymore.  I felt the room begin to spin.  Even the sounds in the room became jumbled and disjointed.

“1”  Dane was saying something.  My brain had stopped processing everything.  Did he just say one?

Buy Links:  Amazon          Barnes & Noble       Smashwords

About the Author:
Christie A.C. Gucker lives in NJ with her husband, two daughters, and a menagerie of pets. Being a mother is one of the greatest joys of her life. She has worked in the advertising industry for over 20 years as a degreed artist, but also works in the fine arts, especially stone sculpture  and snapping photographs. Christie is also a singer and musician, and can be found singing on a few CDs.
After the death of her father, Christie searched for something to fill her desire to make a mark in this world. Her love of the arts and creativity allowed her to search for a new medium, which she found with a pen instead of a brush. Being an avid reader her whole life, and with her family cheering her on, she decided to take her shot and began writing.
Christie is fascinated by the supernatural and sharks, and studies both avidly. You’ll be sure to find something spooky lurking somewhere in her stories. Her greatest joy is sitting on a beach with her family 

Author Links:  Site       Facebook         Twitter

Seeing Red by E.L. Esch

Genre: Romance/ M/M

What would you do if you lost five years of freedom? If everything you'd ever known was torn away from you, all because the one person you counted on to save you didn't come through?

This is the cruel reality for Gabriel “Red” Thatcher, convicted at age nineteen for the murder of his father. Now twenty-five and eight months out of prison, Red has nothing to his name and no one to help him. He is carrying close to him a rage hotter than white flames. Had his sister just testified on his behalf in court, he could have been spared the horrible things that happened to him in the doghouse. Things that'll make him never look at intimacy the same way again.

Red can't take swallowing his bitter rage alone anymore. Unable to kill the growing loneliness and ire with time, he heads into the Flower District in search of a gay bar to drown his sorrows. There he meets the bubbly, easy-on-the-eyes Silo Winters.

When Red learns that Silo did three years in prison for an accidental oil fire, he brings Silo home, not so much for a wild romp as to relieve his aching loneliness. Besides if anyone will understand Red's pain it'll be Silo, who's gone through some of the same horrors he has. However, he definitely doesn't count on Silo becoming so much more than a sexy shoulder to lean on. Now, if only Red can learn to let him in.


The Flower District was named for what many men lost there—that moment when the lily white of a pure man’s soul turned red with his first taste of carnal lust. This was not my case, however. I’d lost the purity of having an untouched body years ago, and to a man I didn’t even love…or want.

I sat in the district’s most renowned bar, Divano Messia. I could practically feel eyes cruising over me, but I paid them no mind. I felt bad for the first guy who’d offer to buy me a drink, because I was that one-in-a-million man who wasn’t looking to get laid in a place meant for people looking to get laid. I just wanted to be left alone and drink.

Despite this, I let my gaze wander. I hadn’t gotten any in more than eight months, so I let myself have some eye candy at least. Those times in prison didn’t count. I didn’t exactly find the idea of being forced against some concrete wall by a man I hardly knew a good time. If I wanted, I could have one of these men on my arm in an hour’s time, but because of the past, because of prison, I didn’t. I would never take a one-night stand—that was the promise I’d made to myself eight months ago on my first day outside my prison cell, my first day of freedom.

Besides, I didn’t have much money to buy a guy a drink. All I had in my wallet today was a twenty, enough for two drinks at most and, if I was lucky, a taxi ride home.

I looked down at my reflection in the bar top and sneered. The twenty wasn’t even mine. I hadn’t been able to find work since I’d gotten out of the doghouse, and it stung worse than a rough first time that the money I did have I was leeching off of my sister. I had been for eight months for rent, food, and now alcohol. But as much as I hated being out on the town using my sister’s money, I desperately needed the booze, because if I penned through another to-be-ignored job application sober, I knew I’d blow a gasket.

Thus I ordered the driest cocktail Messia served—a Stinger. It hurt my throat to swallow it, but I sucked up the burn and smacked my lips. It wouldn’t get me drunk, but twenty bucks wouldn’t anyway, so at least I could take my mind off all the shit going on in my life by scalding my tongue.

When I grimaced at my second sip of the cocktail, a man a few seats away from me laughed. I looked up at him, but he wasn’t looking back. I wondered if he’d even been laughing at me as I profiled his average build and cleanly shaven skull. What attracted my attention the most about him were his ice-blue eyes. I only caught a glimpse when he turned to look behind him, but they were astounding. A pale winter blue, almost stark white, just like icicles reflecting the color of the sky. I could almost smell the clean air and feel the frigid chill of winter when I saw them.

Realizing I was staring, I lowered my eyes. Then I caught sight of an array of black bars on the underside of the man’s wrist. A barcode… I gazed back up at his shaven skull and understood, and that’s when he looked at me.

He smiled. His teeth were straight and perfect, though strangely not quite as white as his eyes.

I turned my gaze away, finding his tattoo again and staring. He must’ve noticed, because he folded his arms to conceal it when I brought my gaze up to his face.

Now it could have just been a meaningless tattoo. I’d heard of teens getting barcode tats just so they could scan themselves at stores. He could’ve been inked just for shits and giggles, but I didn’t think so. The way he hid his tattoo from me when he caught me staring…the seemingly pained look in his eyes when he’d folded his arms…his ink was personal. Too personal to have been done for kicks. After all, lots of guys who’d been in prison got tats of their prisoner ID. I knew—I was one of them. Only I didn’t do it to make myself look like some badass, or to brand myself as a rebellious stray lamb. I did it to remind myself that no matter how rough life got, I’d been through worse. Much, much worse…

“Silo Winters.” The tattooed man called across the bar. “That’s my name. Yours?”

“Red…” A large part of me didn’t want to talk to him, because I knew what he was after. A larger part of me realized from the ink on his wrist that he might have been through the same type of hell I had in prison, and that he, like me, could possibly want a shoulder to lean on to get away from it all. But I wasn’t about to kid myself. This was the Flower District’s most popular gay bar, after all.

“Red, like the crayon color?” He rose from his seat and took the one next to me instead.

“I guess.” I sipped my drink again and cringed.

“Why drink it if you don’t like it?” Silo set his elbow on the bar and his chin atop his palm.

“Because I want to.” I drank again, noticing the way he kept eying my cocktail.

“Care to offer me one?” He grinned at me stupidly, with his lips crooked and his eyes squeezed shut.

And though I kind of found it cute, I shook my head and said, “No.”

That quieted him for a minute.

“Well, I won’t make you woo me, if that’s not your thing. How about you just take me home and we skip the formalities?”

Talk about coming on too strong. Part of me was a bit disappointed this man had ended up just like the rest, mostly because I yearned to hear the story behind the tattoo on his wrist. I looked for it again. Realizing it was hidden, I scratched my own instead.

“Sorry, I’m not looking for anything like that.” I promptly asked the bartender for my bill, and then again for my change when he gave it to me.

“I won’t rob you or anything.” Silo stared at me as I rose from my seat, an odd pleading look in his bluish-white eyes.

“Sorry.” I set a dollar on the bar and left, feeling those icicle eyes burning into my back as I stood up to head out the door.

“Hey wait, sugar.”

Against my better judgment, I turned back to face Silo. “What?”

“I’m not offended by a rejection.” He laughed. “Stay. Drink. That’s why you came, isn’t it?”

I narrowed my eyes. He was right. Besides, I’d only finished half my cocktail. “Fine…” I slowly took my seat again.

“So what’s got ya sucking down a throat-stinging drink like that, sweetheart?” Silo asked.

I hadn’t thought he’d continue talking to me, but as long as he didn’t make any more passes at me, I didn’t mind.

“Life,” I grumbled.

“Hah! That’s what’s got me here too, sweetheart.” I hadn’t intended to sit with him and talk. After all, I couldn’t give him the night of fun that he wanted. But the moment I saw him, his beautiful icicle-blue eyes captured me. They demanded my attention every time I looked at him. And when I’d felt them on my back as I’d turned to leave the bar, I’d sensed them looking beyond the surface of my skin and down into my core. That was one of the reasons I’d sat back down at the bar. That and my insatiable curiosity about the barcode tattoo on the underside of his wrist. Mostly, though, it was the look of quiet understanding in Silo’s eyes when I caught him staring at my similarly tattooed wrist.

Before I knew it, we’d been talking for hours, mostly about things that had no meaning, like our favorite bars in the Flower District. Silo was a huge flirt and hit on me more often than not, but nothing serious. He always laughed when he dropped some cheesy line or batted his eyelashes, almost as if he were emphasizing that it was all a joke. At intervals he still seriously asked me to take him home, and—because of my personal principles—I declined.

“Crayon…” Silo said suddenly. He tapped the side of my martini glass with a terribly chewed nail. The ping echoed around the bar, lost in the conversations of other men. “Do you come here every night? I’ve never really seen you around here.” He smiled.

I shook my head. “No.”

Silo grinned and settled his cheek against the palm of his hand. “I see.”

I could see the barcode tattooed on the underside of his wrist again with the way he was sitting, and my curiosity flared up once more.

Now normally I would in no way bring up prison, because if I did, the conversation was bound to route back to me and what’d I’d done to get locked up. Normally I avoided the topic like the plague, but here I was with a man who may have gone through that very same hell and all I wanted to talk about was prison since I’d met him, because for the first time in eight months, I’d found someone whose gaze didn’t develop that repelling glare when it passed over the barcode inked into my wrist. And just knowing someone like that existed made my soul cry out to him as a fellow comrade-in-arms. If I was wrong about it all—about him and his past being just like me and mine—then oh well. I would take that chance, because eight months of having no one to talk to were driving me crazy. If I did turn out to be wrong about him, then he’d simply become just another stranger judging me silently with his pale, wintery eyes.

So as casually as I could, trying to show Silo I wouldn’t care no matter how he answered, I asked, “So I’ve noticed you’ve got a barcode tat. Shits and giggles, or have ya done time?” while tapping my ink.

“You finally asked, huh? I wondered who would be the first.” Silo chuckled, almost spat as he raised his head and looked at my face. He shucked off his leather jacket and pointed to a fleshy red burn on the right side of his neck.

“Three years.” Silo craned his neck as if to give me a better view. “Trespassing. Apparently I’m dumb enough to cause an oil fire right in front of my own face.”

I scratched my wrist. “You didn’t?”

“Fucking tank fell off the truck. Driver started the vehicle and then…” Silo clenched his fist before my face and then stretched his fingers wide. “Boom. Luckily it was a small tank, but there I was, a twenty-three-year-old nitwit proving the size of my balls to a couple of drunk college buddies. A convenient excuse. They convicted me on the cigarette I’d thrown to the ground minutes before the tank just rolled off the truck and started a fire. I’d tossed the stupid thing right next to the truck’s tire too, and of course there were no witnesses of it being an accident. My college friends had bailed on me, afraid of getting caught. Bullshit. I just got out a month ago.” Silo held up his hand and ordered a Balalaika when the bartender was within earshot.

The bar master exchanged a nod with Silo, turning to find his mixer. When Silo received his drink, he sipped it daintily, his anger seeming to have already cooled. “Ah, that’s good. I missed this damn place.”

“Amen to that.” I held up my drink in a hypothetical toast.

Silo sipped his cocktail with a finesse that matched the catlike grace with which he handled the glass. As he brought the glass away from his lips, he smiled sadly at the barcode tattooed on the underside of his wrist. “You have one too, huh?” He gestured at my similarly placed ink. “What do you think possesses us to remind ourselves of the shit we went through in there?”

I laughed, merely because I was happy to understand what he meant. “That it only gets better?” I snorted. “Or worse.” I examined my ink and shook my head. After what had been done to me in that hellhole, I could only pray that things couldn’t possibly get worse. “So were you one of those dudes who couldn’t stand the blood, Silo?”

Pft, no. Tattoos don’t hurt that much. I actually thought about getting another.” He stopped to take a drink of his cocktail. “Funny.” He grinned. “You didn’t say anything about my name being weird. Most people would’ve brought it up by now.”

I shrugged. “What would I say? My name’s a crayon color.” I paused, thinking long and hard about saying what I wanted to say next. I passed my eyes over Silo’s figure openly. “I’d rather mention something about that fine body.”

Silo sputtered into his drink and ended up swallowing more laughter than cocktail. “Oh, you’re finally coming around, huh?”

No, he was wrong. I wasn’t looking for any more empty sex in my life. I glanced at Silo and silently apologized for hitting on him, because I hardly had any intention of having yet another forced, emotionless romp. But that nagging fellowship I felt between Silo and me was just too strong to ignore. Maybe his relentless flirting had simply taken its toll on me, because I actually wanted to take him home now just to be close to him, the man who neither judged nor feared me.

So when I simply shrugged, I hoped Silo knew how I felt.

“Don’t come on to me half-assed.” Silo smiled despite his words. He took a swig of his cocktail, twiddling his thumbs around the stem of his glass when he set it back down on the bar. “If you don’t find me attractive, I can go back to the end of the bar.”

“N-no!” I stuttered. “I meant what I said—you do have a nice body. I just—”

“You ever been fucked in prison, Crayon?” He looked me up and down and shook his head. “You look too built to have been bullied like I was.” He snickered, almost like his words didn’t carry the horrors of his past.

The question hit me so suddenly that my mouth went dry. I almost felt like he knew what was going through my head, as if his ice-blue eyes were reading me. So it was true, then—he’d gone through the same shit as me and more in prison, and that was when I knew for sure that I wanted to take him home with me. Because, like I’d hoped, he wasn’t judging me. He understood.

I regarded Silo’s quiet trepidation with care, knowing I was treading on eggshells now. Little did he know, he was doing the same.

“No,” I lied.

Buy Link: Loose-Id 

~About The Author
I can mostly be found staring into the screen of my PC or laptop into all hours of the night, hyped on caffeinated soda and likely procrastinating something important by losing at Internet Checkers or browsing the web (The day I win a game of Internet Checkers is the day I can write more than a few pages at once without procrastinating). When I'm not doing that, I'm either out being my nerdy self or, of course, writing. I've been writing since the fourth grade, and have no plans to stop. To me, one of the greatest pleasures in life is being able to create worlds and characters whose lives I can share with others.

Author Links:     Website     Facebook   DeviantArt    Blog

E. L. Esch is giving away a digital copy of Seeing Red during her tour.  For a chance to win please fill out the Rafflecopter Below.