Author Spotlight: Rosanna Leo

Name:   Rosanna Leo  

Author of:   The Stand In; Up In Flames; Gemini Island Shifter’s Series (Predator’s Kiss; Predator’s Serenade; Predator’s Refuge; Predator’s Claim; Predator’s Fire; Predator’s Trinity; Predator’s Rescue; Predator’s Salvation); Greek God Romances (For the Love of a God; Sweet Hell; Sunburn); The Orkney Selkies Series (The Selkie; Selkie’s Revenge; Selkie’s Lure) (Liquid Silver Books)

Handymen Series: A Good Man (Limitless Publishing)

Vegas Sins Series: Vice (Crave Publishing)

Night Lover (Hartwood Publishing)

 

 

Can you tell me about the first piece you remember writing?   The first piece I remember writing was when I was 12. There was a creative writing competition at my school, and all the essays were supposed to be about World War II. I chose to write about my grandfather’s experiences in the war and the way he still suffered from horrible nightmares decades after the fighting stopped. Although he was never diagnosed, I am certain he suffered from PTSD. My essay won me the top prize in the competition and I ended up going to a regional final as well. I think that was the first time I got “the bug.”

When did you first realize you wanted to pursue writing as a profession?  Strangely enough, when I first enrolled in university, it was with the intention of being a writer. However, I was pursuing a few other things at the same time and I strayed from writing and ended up becoming a classical soprano. I also worked in the corporate world for a time but years later, I found my way back to writing.

Is there anyone who went out of their way to help or advise you during your journey to become a published author?  When I started, I knew nothing…and I mean, nothing. I had some knowledge, a lot of enthusiasm and crazy dreams but that was about it. My first publisher Liquid Silver Publishing, really nurtured me, as well as taking a chance on a newbie. The first draft I sent them was pretty horrible but they helped me shape it.

Do you exclusively romance or have you written in other genres?  Most of my books are romance and that is my first love. However, I am a huge fan of ghost stories as well. Last year, I had a horror novella published in an anthology called The Stranger. My story “The Cemetery Guardian” takes place in Toronto’s historic cemetery, the Necropolis, and explores the idea that every cemetery has a guardian…the spirit of the first person interred there. It was so much fun to write something terrifying!

What is your schedule like when you’re writing a book? Is it difficult to achieve a work, life, write balance?  Work-life balance is always hard to achieve and I think most of us have to make little sacrifices here and there. I think the key is making peace with whatever measures you take. I also work part-time so I try to write when I’m not at work. However, some weeks are tricky. Life can throw up obstacles. When it does, I’ve learned not to stress out about it. I always respect my deadlines but have learned how to compartmentalize and prioritize so I’m happy with the work that gets done.

How long does it generally take you to write a first draft? How long do you spend on revisions?  My first drafts have really varied as far as time it takes to complete them. I’ve had some books that I’ve written in a matter of weeks because the words just flow. Others take months. I have one that I worked on, off and on, for years. It really depends. As far as revisions, that is usually another few weeks. And then, of course, an editor at the publishing house gets it and provides more feedback, so another few weeks there. It’s a process!

Can you describe the preparation/research you do for each book?  This is something that varies from book to book as well. I write both contemporary and paranormal romance. One could argue there are different types of research that come into play for each subgenre but I try not to skimp on research in either case. Even if I’m writing about a mythical creature, I read the old myths and folklore. Did that creature have an origin in the world of legend? What were its characteristics? As far as contemporary romance, I might have to do research on character professions, emotional issues, types of conflict. I don’t like to get bogged down in minute detail but it’s important to get the big picture right.

Do you have any quirky writing habits (the things you’d never want anyone to know)?  LOL, nothing that I can’t share. I don’t write in the nude or anything like that…not that I’m passing judgement. Nope, as for me, I just need some quiet and some coffee and I’m good.

Have you ever done a literary pilgrimage—or any interesting research—for your novels? If not, do you have a research destination bucket list?  I have, although I didn’t always realize I was making a literary pilgrimage at the time. LOL. I’ve used many of my travels in my writing and have used places like London, the Mayan Riviera and Las Vegas as settings after visiting those places. I also set a lot of my books in or near Toronto, my home town, so there is often a lot of Canadian flavour.

Inspiration comes in many forms. Can you recall the exact moment of inspiration for each of your projects?  I wish I could! My inspiration is never quite that tangible. I’m struck more by characters and conflicts than moments in time.

Do you have a specific genre you prefer to read? What are your favorites?  I’m a big lover of contemporary and paranormal romance but also love suspense and some horror.

Do you hide any secrets in your books that only a few people will find or know the real inspiration for?  Actually, I do have a couple of Easter eggs. I have two teen sons, Daniel and Andrew. Although I have never, nor will I ever, name heroes after them, I have used parts of their names for secondary characters or as surnames for major characters (i.e. Emily Daniels and Trent Andrews in A Good Man, Handymen 1.)

Are your characters inspired—in part or whole—by people in your real life?  Not really. I don’t tend to use people I know in books. I prefer to create completely fictional characters.

Name one book you think is entirely underappreciated.  My pal Jessica Cale is a wonderful historical romance author. Her Southwark Saga is one of my favourite series and I want the world to know about it.

Name one book that was a guilty pleasure.  The S.E.C.R.E.T. series by L. Marie Adeline. I love the whole series.

Be honest: Do you Google yourself?  LOL. I have, out of curiosity, and to see if my promotional efforts have worked. There is another Rosanna Leo out there and I believe she is an American dentist.

As a writer, which animal would you choose as your mascot/avatar/patronus?  Definitely a sleepy house cat.

Is there one thing you think you, as a writer, should be better at, but secretly struggle with?  The whole thin skin/thick skin syndrome is probably something that bothers me…if I let it. Over the years, I’ve gotten better at putting aside negative opinions. After all, we can’t please everyone. We just want to. LOL

What is one word of advice you’d give to an aspiring writer?  Read outside your genre every so often, if you don’t already. You can learn a lot about writing from authors of all genres and adapt that to romance or your chosen genre.

What is one word of advice you’d give to a newly published author?  Write book 2. Now.

In what ways do you “pay it forward” to help other aspiring writers?  I’ve been trying to pay it forward since I started because I received help from so many nice people in the romance world. I often feature other authors on my blog, in my newsletter, in my tweets. I share posts for others in my reader group on FB as well. Just a lot of general cheerleading for some great friends and talented authors.

Want to know more about Rosanna?

 

The Gemini Island Shifters Series

Predator’s Kiss (Book 1)  Predator's Kiss (Gemini Island Shifters Book 1) by [Leo, Rosanna]

Rosanna Leo weaves a fun, exhilarating tale in Book 1 of her new Gemini Island Shifters series. Thrills, suspense, and humor abound when a rock star brother, stalkers, and a sexy erotica author descend on one ornery bear shifter. Find out for yourself what happens when events conspire to awaken the bear!

Bear shifter Ryland Snow just wants peace. The peace and quiet afforded him at his woodsy retreat, the Ursa Fishing Lodge. As owner of the lodge, Ryland enjoys the tranquil life he’s created among his fellow shifters. He lives to maintain a safe haven for them, away from meddlesome human eyes.

When his rock star brother arrives, bringing trouble in the form of a possible hit man, Ryland is incensed. He’s been cleaning up Soren’s messes as long as he can remember, and is tired of his brother’s lecherous exploits.

Things go from bad to worse when Lia Goodblood stumbles upon Ryland and his lodge. Yes, the reclusive erotica author is easy on the eyes, but the human woman is more trouble than she’s worth. To say nothing of her bizarre fear of furry creatures.

Ryland determines to rid himself of her presence. But when he learns she’s on the run from a crazed fan, Ryland’s protective bear instincts flare. And the bear won’t be denied.

Content Notes: Paranormal, Shifters, Contemporary, Spicy

Buy Predator’s Kiss on Amazon or Barnes & Noble

 

Predator’s Serenade (Book 2)  Predator's Serenade (Gemini Island Shifters Book 2) by [Leo, Rosanna]

He’s a rock star shifter on a mission of mercy, she’s a mother who will do anything for her child. Can a famed playboy find love with a soccer mom? You’ll be singing the praises of Rosanna Leo’s passionate, new romance, Predator’s Serenade, Book 2 of the Gemini Island Shifters series.

There are three things that make bear shifter Soren Snow’s skin crawl: mothers, their children, and the great outdoors. Soren is a famed musician and playboy, and he would rather spend his days pressing the flesh with the women in his fan club than developing meaningful relationships. When his brother calls in a favor, forcing Soren to revisit the Ursa Fishing Lodge in Northern Ontario, he couldn’t be more displeased. However, he owes his brother big time.

Gioia Clementine would rather not meet Soren, her drummer son’s rock idol. But when tragedy strikes her home, it seems the only one the boy might respond to is Soren. Gioia begrudgingly agrees to let her son meet him, hoping the rock star won’t turn her tween into a musical misogynist.

When Gioia and Soren meet, the sexual chemistry threatens to set the Ontario woodland ablaze. Can these two opposites find a common ground? And can they manage to resolve their unwanted feelings, even when a mysterious stranger arrives at the lodge, threatening everything?

Content Notes: Spicy

Buy Predator’s Serenade from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

 

Predator’s Refuge (Book 3) Predator's Refuge (Gemini Island Shifters Book 3) by [Leo, Rosanna]

A tiger shifter searching for a safe place to hide. A lynx shifter trying to prove herself. Neither expecting the desire that flares between them … nor the danger stalking them. Suspense and passion fill the pages of Predator’s Refuge, Book 3 of Rosanna Leo’s thrilling romance series, Gemini Island Shifters.

Lynx shifter Marci Lennox has worked at the shifter-friendly Ursa Fishing Lodge and Resort all her adult life. It’s more a home to her than a job. When her boss goes on vacation, putting her in charge, Marci is thrilled. Finally a chance to prove she has the mettle to run a resort.

Her confidence is shaken when new employee Anton Gaspar appears. One look at the mysterious tiger shifter spells trouble for Marci and for her sex-crazed lynx. Anton is judgmental, condescending, and a little misogynistic. Unfortunately, Marci’s lynx thinks his tiger is more delicious than an oversized bag of Maltesers.

It becomes difficult for Marci to remain neutral near Anton, especially when she learns of his troubling past and unusual family circumstances. However, when dangerous incidents occur on the resort, the lynx woman and tiger man join forces to combat the threat to the lodge and its guests.

Harder still is the quest to combat their explosive feelings for one another. As they explore their mutual passion, they realize the danger at the resort is more insidious than they ever envisioned. Their dreams, their love, and their very lives are at stake.

Content Notes: Hot, Paranormal, Contemporary, Shifters, Suspense

Buy Predator’s Refuge from Amazon or Barnes & Noble 

 

Predator’s Claim (Book 4) Predator's Claim (Gemini Island Shifters Book 4) by [Leo, Rosanna]

As a new Alpha, Bart Cairo has his hands full. His pack is driving him crazy, an old enemy is knocking at the door, and he’s ready to stake his claim on the woman that has been his heart’s desire for years. You’ll love Predator’s Claim, Book 4 of Gemini Island Shifters, author Rosanna Leo’s hot paranormal romance series.

For years, wolf shifter Bart Cairo has harbored secret feelings for his co-worker, Charlotte Moffatt. Even though he thinks he’s been discreet with his affections, everyone at Gemini Island’s Ursa Fishing Lodge knows he and Charlotte, a fellow wolf shifter, are meant to be mates. Everyone but Charlotte.

Charlotte couldn’t be less interested in mating. A free spirit, she wants nothing more than to succeed at her new career in the big city and leave small-town Gemini Island behind. However, she can’t deny Bart stirs up unwanted emotions inside her. Emotions she swore she’d never feel again.

The occasion of Bart’s family reunion compels him to assume new responsibilities, and to consider a role he never envisioned for himself. Family tensions rise to the surface as a new Alpha is proclaimed in his pack. And when old grudges escalate, Bart must stake his claim.

Charlotte resists as he stakes a claim on her as well. But when he begins to employ sexual tactics of temptation, she wonders if the only solution is submission to the enticing wolf man. Can she trust her heart again? And can they find their happy ending before an enemy cuts their story short?

Buy Predator’s Claim from Amazon or Barnes & Noble 

Predator’s Fire (Book 5) Predator's Fire (Gemini Island Shifters Book 5) by [Leo, Rosanna]

Nina never dreamed a world of shape shifters could exist. Killian never dreamed he’d fall in love with a human. Neither of them ever expected their love would make them targets of a vicious shifter cult. Together, they’ll have to find a way to protect Gemini Island from destruction! Rosanna Leo is pleased to bring you Predator’s Fire, Book 5 of her passionate romance series, Gemini Island Shifters.

When Nina Suzuki discovers the body of her best friend Janine, her world turns upside down. Things go from bad to worse when Janine’s corpse seems to transform into that of a large, brown wolf. For the first time, Nina is faced to confront all the clues indicating her BFF was not what she seemed. A letter from the dead woman opens Nina’s eyes to a strange, new world. The same letter warns of a sinister group called the Alpha Brethren, and urges her to find Killian Moon of the Ursa Fishing Lodge and Resort on Gemini Island.

Killian Moon is a jaguar shifter and teen mentor at the Ursa Lodge in Northern Ontario. He may be a comfort and inspiration to confused teen shifters, but he also has a fiery past. His past comes back to haunt him when human Nina arrives at the resort, demanding to speak with him. Demanding answers. Can he trust her with knowledge that will not only change her life, but possibly endanger those around him?

As Killian begrudgingly tutors Nina on all things shifter, their mutual curiosity flares into passionate need. Once they touch, once they succumb to desire, there is no going back. Killian realizes Nina is his mate and they both begin to comprehend the terror threatening those on their shifter-friendly island. He is forced to confront the tragedy in his family and determines to protect Nina at all costs.

But can they protect everyone they love from a cult of dangerous shifters, intent on horror and destruction?

Buy Predator’s Fire from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

 

Predator’s Trinity (Book 6) Predator's Trinity (Gemini Island Shifters Book 6) by [Leo, Rosanna]

Suzan has become the obsession of a vicious cult leader. Percy and Byron are jaguar shifter twins who will stop at nothing to protect her. In Suzan, they have recognized their mate, the one woman they always dreamed of sharing. But when evil visits the Ursa Fishing Lodge and Resort on Gemini Island, will their love be enough to defeat it? The passion and suspense continue in Predator’s Trinity, Book 6 of Rosanna Leo’s paranormal romance series, Gemini Island Shifters.

Librarian Suzan Marsh is an empath who has always felt assaulted by the feelings of others. She has had to distance herself from the people in her life, raising a mental barrier to ward off unwanted emotions. When wolf shifter August Crane abducts her, he breaks through the walls she constructed, forcing her to accept a frightening new truth.

Jaguar shifter twins Percy and Byron Moon are familiar with the evil ways of August Crane. Because of him, their childhood was destroyed. Because of him, their way of life at the peaceful Ursa Fishing Lodge and Resort is threatened. And they won’t rest until he is dead.

When Crane drags Suzan into his cult and decides to make her his “concubine,” Percy and Byron know they must save the human woman. Their connection to her is strong, and they cannot deny the dream they always held close. That they could share a woman and make her their mate.

But even after rescuing Suzan, none of them are free from Crane’s clutches. The wolf shifter has plans, ones that involve the demise of every shape-shifter at the Ursa Resort. Not only must Percy and Byron keep Suzan safe, they must convince her to accept them both. In order to stop Crane from hurting everyone they love, they must learn to fight together.

Buy Predator’s Trinity on Amazon or Barnes & Noble 

 

Predator’s Rescue (Book 7) Predator's Rescue (Gemini Island Shifters Book 7) by [Leo, Rosanna]

Peace has been restored to Gemini Island, but wolf shifter Fleur Bissette isn’t rid of her personal demons. Can the good guys ever trust a former bad girl? And can a noble tiger man learn to love a woman who hasn’t learned to love herself? Find out in Predator’s Rescue, Book 7 in the Gemini Island Shifters series by paranormal romance author Rosanna Leo.

Tiger shifter Jani Fodor should have washed his hands of Fleur Bissette long ago. However, when she disappears from the shape-shifter sanctuary on Gemini Island, he can’t forget her, and launches a fraught two-week search to find her. He thinks she’ll be grateful but the petulant she-wolf resents his intrusion in her life.

Jani recently liberated Fleur from a vicious cult of shape-shifters, where she was brainwashed by the sadistic August Crane. The wolf shifter terrorized their friends at the Ursa Fishing Lodge and Resort on Gemini Island. Labeled a “bad girl” all her life, Fleur knows she’ll never fit in with the good guys at the Ursa, no matter how much Jani tries to convince her of their regard. Besides, she can’t stay with Jani. Although he’s the closest thing she’s ever had to a friend, their chemistry is explosive in the worst way.

When a new menace arises, in the form of a vicious drug dealer with a grudge, Jani is adamant Fleur accept his help to rehabilitate her addict mother and remove her from the influence of her dealer. Fleur accepts Jani’s assistance but as they work together, friendship erupts into passion. Neither can deny their lust-struck spirit animals, and before long, they realize their connection runs deeper than they ever expected.

Despite the threats posed by the drug dealer, the worst danger of all dwells inside Fleur. Haunted by the spirit of August Crane, Fleur is inundated by visions that torment her. She is consumed by guilt and plagued by old hostilities. Can this bad girl make good? And is Jani’s love enough to save her from her demons?

Buy Predator’s Rescue on Amazon or Barnes & Noble 

 

Predator’s Salvation (Book 8) Predator's Salvation (Gemini Island Shifters Book 8) by [Leo, Rosanna, Leo, Rosanna]

The shape shifters from Gemini Island’s Ursa Resort have been through hell. In the battle with their enemy the Alpha Brethren, they suffered losses and are still dealing with the emotional aftermath. No one in this heroic group has emerged unscathed.

When mountain lion shifter Connor Church lost his best friend, he made a vow to protect his widow and small children. Of everyone on Gemini Island, he knows best how badly the young family has suffered.

Unfortunately, Elaine Gleason hasn’t made it easy for Connor. Drowning in grief, she moved her family far away. When a medical emergency forces them to return, she is confronted by unexpected feelings for Connor, a man who has always been one of her closest friends. Her emotions send her into a tailspin when it becomes clear Connor feels the same way. They fight the attraction, tortured by their loyalty to Elaine’s dead mate.

When a remorseless organ trafficker develops an obsession for Elaine, Connor’s protective instincts emerge and he realizes his feelings run much deeper than friendship. The friends at the Ursa must do battle once more. But even if they win, can Elaine ever move past her grief and start a new life with Connor?

Buy Predator’s Salvation from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

The Greek God Romances

For the Love of a God For the Love of a God by [Leo, Rosanna]

Conservator Maia Douglas is an expert on ancient Greece and its mythology. She would never tell anyone at the museum where she works, but she’s always had a secret crush on the mythical Eryx, Greek god of love. There is nothing she loves more than to tend to her favorite statue of him, and her nighttime dreams are filled with luscious images of Eryx making love to her.
One day, the peace at Maia’s beloved museum is shattered when a new director arrives. A man who looks exactly like her image of Eryx. As Maia watches, he manages to upset her ordered museum world, at the same time he inflames her with unwanted desire.

Maia does not know that her new boss is actually the god Eryx, disguised as a mortal so he may work in antiquities. Although he is the god of love, he has forsaken his sexual nature because of a curse that has killed any woman he’s dared to love. Though he fights it, Eryx is drawn to Maia with a force he’s never experienced in a thousand years. But can he convince her of his true identity?

And can he protect her from a vengeful goddess who seeks her destruction?

Buy For the Love of a God from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

 

Sweet Hell Sweet Hell by [Leo, Rosanna]

Dionysus, Greek god of wine and theater, is the world’s original playboy. But lately, he has been restless, moody, and he knows something is wrong. His carefree and bacchanalian lifestyle is starting to feel like one long string of meaningless sexual escapades. Even worse, he is suddenly aroused by the idea of marriage. To top it all off, Josie Marino, the mouthy, disheveled, and eternally annoying woman who serves him coffee at the local bakery, sets him on fire.

Josie, a Toronto baker of Italian heritage, is not looking for love or lust. Especially not with Dionysus Iros, the most aggravating, demanding customer she’d ever had to serve. With his rippling muscles and sexy, knowing eyes, he’s obviously trouble with a capital T. Unfortunately, he’s also the star of her every X-rated dream. She’s known players like Dionysus before, and one of them almost got the better of her. Josie determines she will not fall for his considerable physical charms, come hell or high water.

But Dionysus turns strangely protective when a sinister character arrives at Josie’s bakery, and they can no longer deny their unwanted feelings for one another. They are forced to embark on a bizarre, sexually-charged journey to hell itself, which threatens to either change them for the better, or destroy them.

Buy Sweet Hell from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

Sunburn Sunburn by [Leo, Rosanna]

There’s more going on at famed Helios Resort in Mexico than meets the eye and Patience O’Conner is going to figure out what, even if it kills her . . . Which is exactly what Death has planned.

Patience O’Conner is a travel blogger who lives for her work. Her dedication to her readers brings her to the famed Helios Resort in Mexico, a locale that stuns her with its beauty but at which she suffers from some very strange accidents.

Luckily, hunky resort bartender Apollo Delos is always there in the nick of time, a malcontent guardian angel. Apollo stuns Patience again and again with his life-saving abilities, to say nothing of his smoldering looks and apparent desire to keep her alive.

Before long, Patience wonders if there is more to the sexy bartender than mixed cocktails and insane first-aid skills. Something strange is happening at Helios and Apollo doesn’t want to talk about it.

Can Patience open herself up to this enigmatic man, even though she is terrified to be vulnerable again? And can Apollo recover from an eternity of hurt and learn to trust once more? They must both decide before Death comes calling.

Buy Sunburn from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

The Handymen Series

A Good Man (Book 1) A Good Man (Handymen Series Book 1) by [Leo, Rosanna]

Not only is Michael a star on a successful home improvement show, he’s also seen as a local hero. But no one knows about the demons he carries inside him ever since the day he risked his life to save others.

All the accolades and honors only make the memories stronger and the pain unbearable. He would do anything to be able to forget, to put his past behind him and move on.

Michael takes on a new home improvement project, convinced it’s the perfect distraction. Little did he know that Emily, the woman who’s supposed to be nothing more than a client, would turn out to be a huge distraction…and engaged.

While Emily battles with her own personal problems, Michael is determined to keep his distance. The last thing he needs is woman trouble. But when it becomes clear that the attraction is mutual, he realizes staying away from her is not an option.

Now Michael needs to decide if he’s willing to risk exposing his weakness, and his heart…by giving in to temptation.

Buy A Good Man on Amazon or Barnes & Noble 

Orkney Selkies Series

The Selkie (Book 1) The Selkie (Orkney Selkies Book 1) by [Leo, Rosanna]

This was supposed to be her year. However, after losing her job and discovering her fiancé cheating, Maggie Collins has her doubts. When her grandmother dies, she hits rock bottom. Maggie travels to her grandmother’s home in Orkney, Scotland to sort through her gran’s things, only to discover the old woman has left her a seal pelt as her inheritance. She also learns that others are after the pelt.

To add to her frustration, Maggie’s dreams are filled with luscious images of a long-haired man, images that draw her to the magical beaches in Orkney. Although she’s lost her trust in men, this dream man inspires her with a lust she’s never known before.

Calan Kirk has also been dreaming. Dreaming of Maggie, the mortal woman who arouses him as no other woman ever has. Meeting her in the flesh when she arrives in Orkney is nothing short of spontaneous sexual combustion. But she is a human, and not to be trusted. He needs the seal pelt, not a red-haired temptress.

As a thief ransacks Maggie’s grandmother’s house, Maggie and Calan are thrust together. They must search for the animal skin, a mythical relic which once found, will either bring them together or rip them apart forever.

Buy The Selkie on Amazon or Barnes & Noble 

 

Selkie’s Revenge (Book 2) Selkie's Revenge (Orkney Selkies Book 2) by [Leo, Rosanna]

When a heartbroken, lonely widow is saved by an equally heartbroken, mysterious man, their lives are changed forever. But evil stalks the beaches of Orkney. Before their long-buried emotions can take flight, they have to save themselves from a monster with no soul. The pages burn with passion in Book 2 of Rosanna Leo’s hot, fantasy series, Orkney Selkies.

On the beaches of Orkney, Scotland, an evil entity stalks mortal women. Machar “Mack” Kirk is a selkie man with a haunted past, one that has prompted him to become a hunter. He prowls the beaches at night, his arrows aiming for the finman who took his first love.

Beth Pedersen also watches the sea. The haunted widow has suffered losses of her own, ones that have crippled her into a state of stony grief. Beth can no longer feel, can no longer see color and life. Until the day Mack Kirk saves her from a mysterious foe, flooding her world with brightness and foreign temptation.

As Mack and Beth fight their growing passion, the finman escalates his attacks. Before long, Mack realizes he’s not just playing Good Samaritan. He wants Beth, too, and will do anything to ensure his lover isn’t taken by the finman. But can he protect his mate from a monster with no soul?

Buy Selkie’s Revenge from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

 

Selkie’s Lure (Book 3) Selkie's Lure (Orkney Selkies Book 3) by [Leo, Rosanna, Leo, Rosanna]

Amy Woods, one of TV’s famed Beast Seekers, has come to Orkney, Scotland, to hunt sirens. One of them killed her sister and she has sworn revenge. Most people think she’s crazy for believing in monsters. She knows the truth. But while patrolling one of Orkney’s cold beaches, she runs into a naked selkie man rather than a siren, and he proves to be an alluring distraction.

Edan Kirk is a selkie, one of an ancient race of seal shape shifters. When he hears of Amy’s intention to hunt sirens, tragic memories overwhelm him. He knows he must get rid of the pesky human. As much as he tries to convince her she’s on a fool’s errand, he can’t resist trying to protect her. After all, he has heard the enticing song of the sirens and he knows its deadly power.

As Amy and Edan engage in a battle of wits and wills, other emotions rush to the fore. Their connection is intense, the sort to come along only once in a lifetime. Edan recognizes her as his mate. However, another woman has set her sights on him as well, one whose powers of seduction are legendary. One whose voice has driven men to madness and devastation.

Can Amy accept Edan as her mate, making her home in the world of the supernatural? And can they save each other from a beast that cannot be destroyed?

Buy Selkie’s Lure from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

 

The Vegas Sins Series

Vice (Book 1) Vice (Vegas Sins Series Book 1) by [Leo, Rosanna, Publishing, Crave ]

Las Vegas has it all—casinos, gambling, money, and women. For a handsome business entrepreneur, it’s paradise.

Wearing success like a well-tailored suit, it’s business as usual for Liam Doyle while he runs his multi-million-dollar empire…until a pesky protester catches his attention.

Staging a one-woman demonstration, Kate Callender has the potential to be a huge pain in his ass. If he doesn’t take care of her soon, there will be bad publicity slapped all over Vice, the newest addition to his chain of casinos.

But there’s one tiny problem Liam didn’t count on—the feisty redhead isn’t about to go down easily. She’s fighting him every step of the way…and he’s starting to like it.

Buy Vice from Amazon or Barnes & Noble 

 

Covet (Book 2) 

Coming July 31 to Crave Publishing.

Alex just acquired Sin City’s hottest casino hotel, and he’s determined to make Vice the ultimate pleasure palace—along with the mind-blowing new club, Covet.

But behind the successful entrepreneur façade, Alex struggles with a past that continues to haunt him, day in and day out.

After a surprise hookup with a beautiful stranger, he thinks he’s found the perfect distraction…until she walks out, leaving him with an unfamiliar ache which the pulse-pounding nights of excess at Covet can’t soothe.

When their paths cross once again, Alex realizes Dana is so much more than a mere distraction. He wants her—all of her.

But having her means he needs to face both her demons…and his own.

Night Lover Night Lover by [Leo, Rosanna]

Canadian soprano Renata Bruno is tired of waiting for her big break. Unfortunately, her boss, the conductor of a chamber ensemble, sees her as little more than background material. When she learns of an opportunity to sing solo with a different troupe in England, she knows she must seize it. Especially when she hears the group is to perform Mozart’s Requiem, her favorite work.

As soon as Renata decides to make her move, a strange, sultry presence invades her life. She begins dreaming of a man, one who makes love to her, bewitching her. It isn’t long before her night lover leaves startling proof of his nocturnal presence, making her doubt her senses.

To compound her discomfort, she learns her new conductor is the college boyfriend who broke her heart years ago. As Renata grapples with old hurts and renewed passion, she must also fend off the increasingly fervent advances of her night-time visitor. She realizes she is under the influence of an incubus, a sexual demon.

It becomes harder to resist the incubus when she learns he has a name and had a tragic history. The more she discovers about his past, the more she realizes they are linked in more ways than one. Renata begins to rediscover love and her sense of faith, but will it be enough to save her night lover from an evil curse? And will it destroy her in the process?

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Author Spotlight: Katerina Baker

Name: Katerina Baker

Author of: The Corner Office (Self Published)

 

Can you tell me about the first piece you remember writing? When did you first realize you wanted to pursue writing as a profession? I always thought I would be a full time writer in retirement, but until then I am managing to write in my spare time. As to whether I can call it a profession? I am definitely not the writer who has ambition to release many books per year. I prefer to let the books “stew” and grow, add on shape that can only happen when I take breaks from the novel I’m writing.

The first book I completed was started six years ago, which began my journey as an author. I remember sending my very first query letter to a New York City agent–only one because I did my research and I knew he was the perfect agent for me–and waiting for a phone call from him that same day. I think I even moved my meetings around so I would be available when he called.

Right.

That phone call never came, but I made another important one–to the editor who agreed to help me get the book into shape. Many revisions and almost three years later, that book did earn me my agent, which brings me to answering your next question…

Is there anyone who went out of their way to help or advise you during your journey to become a published author? God, too many people to count. But a few people did make a tremendous difference in my writing career. First off, my long-time writing buddy and an amazing author Camilla Monk. She was my first true fan who helped me see potential in my work. I remember how high I felt receiving her comments after she read my work in progress. I think all authors needs a few good cheerleaders, and Camilla was that person for me when I was just starting out.

The other people who really helped me are my agents. They worked with me on many gruesome revisions, relentlessly making me kill my darlings and pointing me in the right direction.
Do you exclusively write romance or have you written in other genres? All of the books I’m writing have strong Romantic aspect, but I’ve decided to not market all of them as Romance because some of them are not traditional romance. My latest novel Under the Scrubs, which will be published soon, will be marketed as Mystery, but there is a very strong romantic element and happily-for-now ending.
What is your schedule like when you’re writing a book? Is it difficult to achieve a work, life, write balance? I am one of those writers who gets up at 5 am to get a few words in and then revise it on the bus to work. I also write at nights and on weekends while my kids are at various activities. Overall, I find myself more productive when I do a few dedicated spurts of writing rather than doing it continuously for many hours. I need my breaks to produce the best stuff.
How long does it generally take you to write a first draft? How long do you spend on revisions? The first draft might take 3-4 months but revisions could sometimes take years. The first novel in a series always takes longer, but sequels come much easier since I already have the special bond with the characters.
Can you describe the preparation/research you do for each book? I prefer to write about a topic that I know about, and my pre-work is focused around drafting a few-page synopsis.
Do you have any quirky writing habits (the things you’d never want anyone to know)? You mean the quirky habits I’d never want to tell anyone but your blog readers? None. Absolutely none. Just kidding. Well, when I get stuck, I like to play “what if” game with my kids. I give them a vague situation and ask them what would they do if they faced it. They win extra points if they find something absolutely ridiculous to resolve it. Under the Scrubs features quite a few of their gems, which is why this novel is that much more special for me.
Have you ever done a literary pilgrimage—or any interesting research—for your novels? If not, do you have a research destination bucket list? I’ve extensively traveled in Turkey for a book I am writing. It’s about two Americans experiencing life in this beautiful country, and I wanted to make it truly authentic.

Inspiration comes in many forms. Can you recall the exact moment of inspiration for each of your projects? The inspiration for Under the Scrubs came when I watched a movie about an FBI agent rescuing a girl-next-door. The movie finished as they walked into sunset together, and I thought, wait a minute. Would it really happen in real life? Would the people like that really get their happily-ever-after and what would it look like? The idea was born: pair up the most different people imaginable and explore their relationship, throw the craziest situations their way and see whether they’d manage to come out together. Would it work out? Would they be able to move past all the conflict? Or maybe life doesn’t really work that way. That’s how the idea started, but it evolved into a really fun novel and some really unusual characters.
Do you have a specific genre you prefer to read? What are your favorites? I love to read all sub-genres of Romance, particularly Romantic Suspense. In humorous mystery, Janet Evanovich is my hero.
Do you hide any secrets in your books that only a few people will find or know the real inspiration for? I hide a murder mystery in my books, but you’ll need to read all of them to find out. Just kidding.

I don’t know if this is really a secret but I spend a lot of time making up the names of fictional places in my books. A few of my characters also love to give nicknames for things, and I spent quite some time making those perfect.

Are your characters inspired—in part or whole—by people in your real life? The female characters in my books are inspired by the women I knew and admired. I love writing about smart women: they are leaders, scientists, even hackers. They create their own destiny and make things happen. They show me the world I want for my daughters.

Name one book you think is entirely underappreciated. There are so many undiscovered books that deserve more attention. I love Camilla Monk’s Spotless series. I think it’s a new classic that everyone should binge-read. How could you not love a hitman with an OCD?

Name one book that was a guilty pleasure. You’ll get me in trouble here. I could spend days binge reading Outlander. I am the type of person who can re-read my favorite books over and over again and never get bored. I do sometimes go to my favorite scenes on my tenth read, though.

Be honest: Do you Google yourself? Never. I don’t care nearly enough what people think of me. This is the same reason I rarely read book reviews. I always reply to any direct messages sent by my readers, though. Those are truly special.

As a writer, which animal/item would you choose as your mascot/avatar/patronus?

It would be a pink pussy hat worn during women march.

Is there one thing you think you, as a writer, should be better at, but secretly struggle with? I could improve my world-building skills, particularly when writing imaginary places.

What is one word of advice you’d give to an aspiring writer? Never give up. If you want something badly enough, keep at it. Be open to constructive criticism, no matter how hard it might be to hear. Constantly grow and learn from others, and eventually it will happen. If you never give up, it’s not a question of if, but of when.

What is one word of advice you’d give to a newly published author? Market your book would be the smart advice, but really, do what makes you happy. Write a new book.

In what ways do you “pay it forward” to help other aspiring writers? I spend a lot of time reading work-in-progress by other authors and providing feedback. I would love to be able to do more collaborations on marketing, but there’s never enough time in a day.

Where can people find more about you?

 

The Corner Office                                                            

Tara Johnson’s sacrifices are about to pay off: a senior executive at thirty-five at a Fortune 500 company, she’s one of the two finalists in line for a Managing Director position. Unfortunately, her rival of fifteen years, the charming, infuriating Richard Boyd, is just as qualified, and unlike her, he’s willing to cross pretty much every line to get what he wants.
Of all the things Tara stored in the attic to make it to the top, it’s her personal life she misses the most. That is, until she starts a steamy affair with sex god Aidan, her direct report. Interoffice relationships with a subordinate can mean the end of a career, and when Richard finds out, it’s the perfect opportunity to take his high-heeled nemesis out, especially since he’s still nursing a grudge against Tara for rejecting him years ago.
But Tara’s increasingly domineering lover has his own dark secrets, endangering more than just her career. As her liaison spirals out of control, salvation will come from the man she always thought she hated, and perhaps the only one to truly understand her.

 

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Author Spotlight: Sharonlee Holder

Name: Sharonlee Holder

Author of: Resurgence; Renegade (coming in 28 May 2018; Changing Tides Publishing)

From: Johannesburg, South Africa

 

Can you tell me about the first piece you remember writing?

It was so long ago that I think it involved a stone tablet, hammer and chisel. LOL. I do, however, remember writing a short story for my girls when they were little entitled ‘Betty & Bumper Go Adventuring’. I printed it out, drew pictures for it and stapled its ‘spine’ together. I think one of the girls may still have it somewhere.

When did you first realize you wanted to pursue writing as a profession?

I have always written for my own entertainment and spent the last ten years writing characters and telling their stories with others in various collaborative roleplaying communities themed around the world of Anne McCaffrey’s Dragonriders of Pern book series. I also participated in NaNo in both 2012 and 2014. It wasn’t until the April Camp Nano in 2016 (during which the first 50k words of Resurgence were written) that I began to dream about the idea of turning my storytelling passion into a profession.

Is there anyone who went out of their way to help or advise you during your journey to become a published author?

My family and a couple of close friends. I know, that sounds so cliched. But were it not for their encouragement and support, I would never have had the courage to submit Resurgence in the first place. I must give my mom extra kudos for the hours and hours that she patiently listened to me blathering on about my characters like they were real people. She is still my number one sounding board when I need to brainstorm a plot twist or when I’m having a crisis of word flow.

Do you exclusively write paranormal romance or have you written in other genres?

I have a half-finished contemporary MC romance that is a stand-alone that I hope to complete this year and submit for consideration. NaNo 2012 I started but never completed a high fantasy novel, but even that has romance woven into it 😉

What is your schedule like when you’re writing a book? Is it difficult to achieve a work, life, write balance?

As an adult with ADD, maintaining any kind of balance and/or focus can be a challenge at times. This is where my passion for music comes in and helps to centre me during writing sessions. I am also truly grateful to be able to say that writing is my work. While I also design patterns for crochet toys and sell those through my Etsy shop on the side, I am determined to turn my writing passion into a sustainable career. Scary, nerve-wracking but altogether exciting too!

How long does it generally take you to write a first draft? How long do you spend on revisions?

Resurgence took me four months to write, Renegade, five months – longer if you count the break I took when I began writing the MC Contemp Romance I have yet to finish. I’m hoping to get book 3 out in four and a half months.

 

As for revisions, I am a lineal writer that starts at Chapter 1 and writes straight through to The End, editing as I go. While this approach does to tend to slow me down so far, it has also served to lessen the need for hefty revisions. I am also a total pantster. While I may know the overall plot and how the book will end, my approach is very definitely that of discovery writing. My little ADD brain would get bored and disengage if it knew too much in advance 😉

Can you describe the preparation/research you do for each book?

Since I’m a pantster and revel in discovery writing, I tend to research as I go. Again, it does make for a bit of a stop-start approach but so far, it’s worked for me. That is, if you discount falling down rabbit holes that began with Googling: How long does it take to dig a grave by hand? And somehow ends with: Watching a Facebook video of someone making a three flavour swiss roll. I can’t even claim that I then went on to make said swiss roll for the family. LOL.

Do you have any quirky writing habits (the things you’d never want anyone to know)?

I feel like I should plead the fifth here. LOL. Coffee. There must always be coffee! Coffee and a short one-minute track from the band Thousand Foot Krutch called The Introduction that I listen to on my headphones at the start of each writing session. Not sure if it’s because I’m trying to invoke my muse, or it simply helps to clear the cobwebs from my head, but it seems to get me into the space I need to be in. The lyrics:

Welcome. You have activated all systems. Deactivation is not an option. You must find the truth. Remember, not everything is what it seems. If you don’t stand for something, you might fall for anything. The end is where we begin.

The link: https://youtu.be/azkL37-ipKU

Have you ever done a literary pilgrimage—or any interesting research—for your novels? If not, do you have a research destination bucket list?

I have! Aside from visiting the local graveyard where Ross, Apollo, Ares and Keanu have their little showdown in Resurgence, my #HEA surprised me with a trip to Underberg in the Drakensberg mountains to the exact location that has inspired the compound that Eros and the resistance take over at the end of Resurgence. It was amazing! There is an old abandoned hospital that inspired the one in Renegade (book 2) that’s just down the road from where I live. However, since it’s listed as one of the top ten most haunted places in South Africa I am way too chicken to check it out myself 😉 There I cheated and relied heavily on Youtube videos taken inside the dilapidated buildings by paranormal investigators and Google Earth for a 3D external view. I’ll be sharing some of those links on my blog and Facebook in the weeks leading up to Renegade’s release.

Inspiration comes in many forms. Can you recall the exact moment of inspiration for each of your projects?

With my #HEA being a patched member of the Hell Razors bike club, inspiration for my unfinished contemporary MC romance is taken directly from my and his involvement in the biker club life. The inspiration for Blood of The Custodians grew from a series of What Ifs after watching the delicious Henry Cavill in the 2011 movie, Immortals – What if the gods of Greek and Roman times still lived among us? What would they look like? What would their politics be? How would they integrate with us and what have they been up to for the past one thousand years?

Do you have a specific genre you prefer to read? What are your favorites?

Paranormal romance all the way with a brief tour here and there through high or urban fantasy as well as historical fiction as written by the incredible Ken Follet. When it comes to PNR, I will admit to having a mega fangirl crush on JR Ward, author of the Black Dagger Brotherhood series and would probably swoon dead away if ever I got to meet her. Ward writes PNR and vampires like no one I’ve ever read before – Edgy, fast-paced, steal-your-breath away, melt-your-bones stuff. Karen Marie Moning, author of the Fever series is a close second – Jericho Barrons is delicious! When it comes to contemporary romance, Lori Foster’s Men Who Walk the Edge of Honor is my all-time favourite series from her so far. In this series, Foster writes the perfect blend of hot alpha males working as white hat mercenaries with steamy romance all while dealing with the grim reality of the modern-day slave trade.

Do you hide any secrets in your books that only a few people will find or know the real inspiration for?

Haha. Yes. Yes, I do 😉 There is a scene in Resurgence where Antara encounters Tryston (The Dark Hunter) for the first time that was inspired by a recurring nightmare I used to have as a teenager living at the coast. In Renegade, there is a scene set in Chicago that briefly touches on a strange little house squished between two modern hotels. Back in March of 2013, during a trip to the States, I stood outside in the middle of a snowstorm opposite the real-life inspiration and told my #HEA that one day, I would write a book and put that little double-storey house in it. Total squee moment when finally, I got to do just that! I only wish I could have written more about it.

Are your characters inspired—in part or whole—by people in your real life?

Oh, this could get me into trouble. LOL. One or two of my characters are certainly drawn from real-life inspiration. For instance, Hailey, Antara’s BFF, is a composite of the close friend of one of my daughters and a friend of mine from the Hell Razors all wrapped up in the bounce and charm of a Jack Russell 😉 The real-life sources of Hailey’s inspiration are aware of this. Except the Jack Russell who was more interested in chasing imaginary squirrels than hearing how she had inspired a character.

Name one book you think is entirely underappreciated.

Gladiatrix by Russell Whitfield. I received the first book as a gift from a dear friend back in 2011 and loved reading about Lysandra, a Spartan warrior priestess who fights her way from shipwrecked slave to fearsome victor in the gladiatorial arena facing many deadly foes and circumstances along the way.

Name one book that was a guilty pleasure.

Wheels Up (Out of Uniform) by Annabeth Albert. A m/m military romance I thoroughly enjoyed Annabeth’s exploration of the psychology and dangers involved when a pair of new lovers suddenly find themselves thrust into the forbidden territory of a relationship between a commanding officer and enlisted man due to an unforseen transfer. What an emotional rollercoaster! And…hot, hot, hot!

Be honest: Do you Google yourself?

Haha. Haven’t we all? My results are pretty boring though. It’s all book/author stuff and the various crochet and cross stitch patterns I’ve designed for magazines or that I sell on my Etsy shop.

As a writer, which animal would you choose as your mascot/avatar/patronus?

Given how dragon obsessed I am, that would have to be it 🙂

Is there one thing you think you, as a writer, should be better at, but secretly struggle with?

Putting down more words in a day that by the end of it, will survive my daily edits. My greatest aspiration is to be able to achieve a steady flow of between 3,000 and 4,000 words a day that make it passed edits.

What is one word of advice you’d give to an aspiring writer?

Read. Read, read, read! And I don’t just mean novels in the genre you want to write in but everything about the craft of writing and publishing that you can get your hands on! Sign up for newsletters that offer free advice, read articles by other authors, editors and publishers. Follow published authors, editors, agents and publishers on social media as they not only have sage advice to give but will often share articles on all things related to the craft of writing. Things such as the difference between ‘showing’ and ‘telling’, character growth, plot development, query letters, writing a synopsis etc. Angela Ackerman on twitter is a brilliant place to start. She’s always sharing amazing tips and hints.

What is one word of advice you’d give to a newly published author?

Social media! That’s two. #mybad. Seriously though, get on social media, follow other authors, book reviewers, bloggers, like their posts, share their stuff, retweet. Reach out. ENGAGE! It’s not just about marketing your book. You need to network and build relationships too.

In what ways do you “pay it forward” to help other aspiring writers?

While I’m not as good about blogging as I should be, I do like to reach out one-on-one and share what I’ve learned in terms of what’s worked for me and what hasn’t, what info is out there for the taking and where to find it. I know how lonely and overwhelming the journey can be and how much just even the smallest bit of encouragement can help.

Where can people find more about you?

 

 

BLOOD OF THE CUSTODIANS 

RESURGENCE – Book one

It’s been a thousand years since the Fates destroyed Olympus, forcing the gods into exile among the humans. Now, led by Eros, the sons and daughters of the Olympians are preparing for war. They are determined to win their freedom, but the Fates will do anything to keep the status quo. A prophesied weapon—said to be able to destroy the Fates—is sought by both sides.  Eros and the resistance want to use it to win their freedom, while the Fates race to find the weapon first and destroy it.

 

Antara, a hybrid of human and Custodial descent, comes into her ancestral powers as the very Tracker Eros needs to find the weapon. Kidnapped, held hostage and forced to confront the hidden truth about her own heritage, Antara is drawn deeper and deeper into a world she never knew existed. Things would be a lot simpler if she could just hate Eros for bringing her here; if his fate weren’t now bound to her own—and if, despite everything, she didn’t already find herself falling in love with him…

 

Set in modern day urban South Africa, Resurgence is a fast-paced paranormal romance featuring rich, dynamic characters centered on a smoldering love story and timeless themes.

 

One Liner: Love has the power to move gods.

 

BUY LINKS: FREE

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RENEGADE – Book two

In the ongoing war between the Fates and the resistance, Colin Murphy, bastard son of Hades finds himself caught between his loyalty to Eros and a past intent on destroying him.

Pursued by Persephone’s bounty hunters with a pissed-off daemon to contend with, there is one thing that Murphy knows for sure – Hailey, the human he now shares his mind and body with, is the innocent in all of it. She is a firefly flickering in the darkness of his black existence and he will do anything to protect her light.

Groomed to be a socialite with a conscience and with her future mapped out for her, nothing could have prepared Hailey for the rude ending to life as she knew it. Or, for that matter, the impact of living in such close, intimate confines with a forsaken son of hell. He’s powerful, dangerous and her only hope of escaping the dark forces after her.

Boundaries will be tested, loyalties questioned, and hearts pushed to the limits in this action-packed paranormal romance that continues the epic Blood of the Custodians saga by Sharonlee Holder.

 

One Liner: He’ll risk his heart to save her soul.

 

PRE-ORDER LINKS:

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Book Blitz: The Viking’s Chosen by Quinn Loftis

The Viking’s Chosen
Quinn Loftis
Published by: Clean Teen Publishing
Publication date: February 12th 2018
Genres: Historical, Romance, Young Adult

His orders are clear: launch a raid against England and bring home the spoils of war. But the prophecy is also clear: General Torben will take a foreign bride—one who is a seer and healer just like his mother. The eldest princess of England is said to be just that…a beautiful, charming, and headstrong woman. But he’s a Viking army general and she’s an English princess—and one who is already promised to the king of Tara.

Two worlds collide in this epic historical fiction centered on an undeniable chemistry that smolders against the odds. Richly written and injected with moments of humor, this action-packed romantic tale will leave you breathless.

Quinn Loftis is the author of twenty novels, including the USA Today Bestseller Fate and Fury.

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EXCERPT:

“At least he does not resemble the back end of a boar,” Dayna whispered.

I shot my sister a quick nod of agreement and then covertly turned back to peer at my future husband who was currently conversing with my father. After our morning ride, my sister and I had found a hiding spot behind some large drapes just to the left of the room occupied by our guests. It afforded us the surreptitious ability to listen and watch with the two kings interact. Thomas had taken his leave, but not before he informed me of what he thought about our childish behavior. I did not care if I was being childish. I was not ready to meet King Cathal just yet, at least not without a little advance warning of what I would be dealing with.

“You are correct,” I murmured back. “He is not ugly, but his handsomeness is marred by that tight lipped frown. He looks cruel.”

I had been surprised to find that my future husband was not nearly as old as I had thought he would be. If I had to guess, I would put him at eight and thirty, or, at the very oldest, two and forty. His hair was dark, cut close to his head. He had deep green eyes, a hawkish nose, and thin lips that seemed to hold a perpetual scowl. Standing at a little over six feet, King Cathal was lean but obviously muscular. Yes, he was handsome, but the cold, detached look in his eyes ruined any favor I might have found in him.

“Do you think it hurts to hold his face like that?” Dayna asked.

I bit my bottom lip to keep from laughing. “Perhaps he was just born that way.”

“Tis a shame to be so handsome and yet such a pompous ass.”

“Shh,” I chastised. “That pompous ass could have your head if he felt your offense warranted it.”

“Father would not allow me to be beheaded, Allete” Dayna assured me. “I am his favorite.”

I made a motion with my hand to quiet her so we could hear what it was our father was saying to the king of Tara.

“She has to know by now that I have arrived,” King Cathal was saying. His words came out clipped and low.

“Allete tends to have her own mind about things. I am sure she will join us when she is ready,” King Albric said, attempting to placate his irritated guest.

“And who allows such independent thinking?” Cathal challenged. “A woman should know her place.” His pointed look was aimed at the queen who stood quietly next to King Albric.

Allete was sure her mother was going to smack the rude man, but a subtle hand placed on her mother’s wrist held her in place.

“I understand your frustration, Cathal, but please be considerate of Allete’s situation. She is being courted by a man she has never met. She will be expected to leave with that man in a month’s time and travel to a place that is not her home, where she has no friends, no family. She deserves time to adjust.” King Albric, ever the diplomat, attempted to ease his counterpart’s temper. Based on Cathal’s pinched lips, however, his efforts were wasted.

“Could you at least send for her?” The other king asked in a more civil tone. And then added, “Please,” all be it a bit begrudgingly.

I snatched Dayna’s sleeve and gave it a gentle tug, indicating it was time for us to go. Like mice being hunted by a cat, we scurried from our hiding place and snuck to my bedchamber. We had barely made it inside when there was a knock at the door.

“Enter,” I said, attempting to keep my voice from sounding breathless.

Lidia entered. The look on her face was one of trepidation.

“The king requests your presence,” my handmaiden said in a soft voice.

I smiled at the girl. “Chin up, Lidia. All will be well.”

Lidia let out a huff, her manners momentarily forgotten. “You have not met the man. He is positively awful.” Her hand flew to her mouth and her eyes widened. “Forgive my frankness.”

Dayna laughed. “Allete would never punish you, especially not for telling the truth.” She lowered her voice conspiratorially. “We already saw him. We spied on them.” Dayna winked, looking completely unrepentant.

Lidia lowered her hand and made an ‘O’ shape with her mouth.

I straightened my dress and pulled my shoulders back. “Might as well face the music. I doubt he is going to turn around and sail back home without me.”

 

Author Bio:

Quinn is an award winning author who lives in beautiful Western Arkansas with her husband, two sons, Nora the Doberman, and Chewy the Cat who thinks he’s a dog. She is the author of 17 novels, and 2 novellas, including the USA Today bestseller, Fate and Fury. Quinn is beyond thankful that she has been blessed to be able to write full time and hopes the readers know how much all of their support means to her. Some of her hobbies include reading, exercising, crochet, and spending time with family and friends. She gives all credit of her success to God because he gave her the creative spirit and vivid imagination it takes to write.

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