Gabrielle Bisset

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Author Shah Wharton Guest Post

I'm thrilled to welcome to the blog a brand new author, Shah Wharton. I met Shah when she was just beginning to write her new book, so it's wonderful to be able to host her on her tour for her first book, Finding Esta.

After three years of writing, re-writing, beta readers, editors, cover designing, book trailers, yet more edits and many agonising hours of formatting, the first instalment of The Supes Series if ready and finally up on Amazon. There are five e-copies (you choice of file: ePub/Mobi or PDF) up for grabs, so please have a go and get Finding Esta FREE for Christmas. It's $2.99 on Amazon, and will be for sale on Smashwords and Kobo in by February.




a Rafflecopter giveaway


BRIEF Blurb: A young journalist sets off to find Esta, but is unprepared for all she finds, and soon realises it's a journey from which she may never return. This is a new adult, urban fantasy about one woman's struggle to retain her identity while everything she knows crumbles around her. Finding Esta is the first book of The Supes Series. Please enjoy the book trailer.




BLURB:   An unusual young woman and fledgling journalist, Luna has various restrictive oddities, all of which prevent any kind of physical intimacy. Abusive parents take pleasure in Luna’s misery and isolation, yet Luna strives to make them proud, to finally earn their elusive love – something she craves almost as much as the painless touch of a lover.

When she learns of a tragic story involving the kidnap of baby Esta, she jumps at the chance to investigate, dragging her Shadows along for the ride within the murky depths of her mind.

Meanwhile, a dark stranger visits Luna’s dreams and stalks her reality. In lieu of the real thing, their intimate moments excite rather than terrify. Nestled within his presence, she begins to sense an urgent message of danger - a message she struggles to interpret, until they finally meet....

Her investigations lead Luna to a vibrant seaside town, hiding copycat aliens and an underworld of Supernaturals. Here, she comes face-to-face with her own, terrifying identity. Confronted with life-changing decisions and the harshest of truths, Luna questions her sanity, searching for logic, feeling deceived by both.

Is Luna trapped in a newfound supernatural world, or within her own delusions? And will anyone care enough to save her?



BIO: Shah met many authors and bookworms galore when she began blogging in 2010, after she moved to Dubai with her husband. She’s since learned a lot about blogging and writing, mostly from the awesome advice of her online peer-group.

She uses her imagination to write short horror stories as well as poetry, but stumbled into writing her first novel after falling in love with Luna, a character in a short story she wrote back in 2010. That story grew into Finding Esta, the beginning of Luna’s journey to self-discovery.

Finding Esta is her d├ębut novel and the first of The Supes Series.

Her passions include blogging, writing, reading, movies, photography, music, theatre, travel, and fine dining. Her qualifications include BSc (Hons) psychology, counselling, and mentoring and she's worked in retail, counselling, and social care. Her favourite genres include anything dark with fangs and/or that will make her squirm or jump or scream out an expletive. She is an avid Kindle abuser and adores the indie writing community and being part of the e-publishing revolution.

She also has one short story published 'The Dead Party' & two poems published in anthologies.


Get Social With Shah

BLOGAmazon - Goodreads - Email - Facebook - Google+ - Linkedin - Pinterest - 
RSS - StumbleUpon - Twitter

Acknowledgements.

Praise to Derek Murphy at Creative IndieCovers who developed the incredible book cover
AubrieAnne at Who's Your Editor? who did a wonderful job of the final edit.
And huge thanks to all the beta readers, patient and enduring online friendships,
and to the mass of wonderful writer resources, all of which took me from thinking,
 "Could I do that?" to "Hell yeah!"
Happy Christmas to everyone and good luck on the giveaway!


Friday, December 21, 2012

Check Out The December Newsletter!

If you're reading this, then the Mayans were wrong and we're all still here. I guess it's a brand new world now. That's cool. Since it's a new world, what better way to start it off than reading my newsletter?  

LOL 

Well, after you get back from doing all those things you want to do with your new life, stop back and check out my newsletter. It has a bunch of interesting things in it, from free wallpapers of incredibly sexy men  to say thanks to readers for their incredible support this year (your computer will love you) to info on a Sons series box set available only for the holidays. Check it out!

http://mad.ly/b21263

Have a great one! Now go out and enjoy the new world!



Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Author Lucy Felthouse Guest Post

I want to give a big welcome to author Lucy Felthouse who's here today to talk about her new story, Cupid.



Paranormal... But Not by Lucy Felthouse
I'm not sure how I did it, but I've managed to release an erotic romance book that's a paranormal, but not. See, several months back myself and the other Wickedly Sexy Writers embarked on a group project – the Reindeer Games. Basically, we all took one or more of Santa's reindeer and made them into shifters, then wrote an erotic romance about them. The project has been very well received and is getting lots of interest, yay!
But one thing that occurred to me when I was putting the book up on my website was that I'd called it a paranormal erotic romance. The thing is, that's not strictly true. It's paranormal... but not. I say this because although the main character in my story, Cupid, is indeed a reindeer shifter, he doesn't actually shift during the story. He doesn't do anything supernatural at all, really. Well, there is one thing, but I'm not going to tell you what that is because it'll ruin the story.
So what I have is a paranormal character with lots of mention of supernatural activity, and a healthy dollop of Santa, but no shifting during the story. I don't think it really matters, to be honest, because that's not really what the book is about, and I don't think it would have added anything to the storyline if he had shifted... but still. I have myself a kind of paranormal erotic romance book!
Regardless of the genre, I really hope readers will enjoy the story, and of course go and check out the books about the other reindeer penned by my fellow Wickedly Sexy Writers. It's been a blast!
*****
As a postman by day, and one of Santa’s reindeer on a single very special night, Cassius Cupid eats, sleeps, and breathes deliveries. He doesn’t mind, but sometimes wishes that someone would send him something more exciting than bills and junk mail.
One cold January morning, Cassius gets his wish. A young woman arrives with a parcel. Turns out it’s for his housemate – but Cassius doesn’t care. All he’s interested in is Carina – the beautiful female courier.
Has Cupid finally met his match?
More info, excerpt and buy links: http://lucyfelthouse.co.uk/published-works/cupid/
Add the book to your Goodreads shelves here: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/16161416-reindeer-games
*****
Lucy is a graduate of the University of Derby, where she studied Creative Writing. During her first year, she was dared to write an erotic story - so she did. It went down a storm and she's never looked back. Lucy has had stories published by Cleis Press, Constable and Robinson, Decadent Publishing, Ellora's Cave, Evernight Publishing, House of Erotica, Ravenous Romance, Resplendence Publishing, Secret Cravings Publishing, Sweetmeats Press and Xcite Books. She is also the editor of Uniform Behaviour, Seducing the Myth, Smut by the Sea and Smut in the City. Find out more at http://www.lucyfelthouse.co.uk. Join her on Facebook and Twitter, and subscribe to her newsletter at: http://eepurl.com/gMQb9



Monday, December 17, 2012

Why Amazon Rankings Are Meaningless

As an indie, I spend a good deal of my online time around other indies, sometimes just reading their posts but other times in conversations. Often those talks are about how much or what they're doing to promo their books in a world still dominated by NY. Quite often, Amazon's rankings are mentioned and there's a bit of unhappiness about the difficulty in getting rankings that will help get a book seen.

I've long believed Amazon's rankings were pure, unadulterated bullshit, but for the longest time I had no proof. Very few people wanted to believe my claims because they flew in the face of everything people were saying. I heard that the algorithm was complex and no one really understands it. I heard explanations for why a book should be higher or lower. I've heard it all. Still, I remained a skeptic.

Then this summer I unpublished a book from Amazon. I didn't want to keep the original Vampire Dreams aside the newer Vampire Dreams Revamped, so I took it off sale. I did this in early July. After some issues with a return recently (yes, 5 months after I took the book down), I found out that Amazon had sold the book until September 4 in the US. That seems really slow for a major online seller when it comes to simply deactivating a book from sale, but so be it.

So Vampire Dreams hasn't been for sale since September 4 in the US. At its highest, the book sat in the 700s back in September 2011, and for a long time it sat in the 1000-3000 range. It literally was the little book that launched it all, not the least of which was Vasilije's character, who now stars in the Sons of Navarus series. That little book has done right by me thousands of times over.

It seems it's still doing so, if Amazon's rankings are correct. Keep in mind that what I'm about to say refers to a book that HASN'T BEEN FOR SALE for over three months (and hasn't been mentioned by me in public in terms of a book for sale for over five months).

This was the ranking of the book on December 13 at 4pm (I've inserted the word up in brackets because Amazon indicates a rise in ranking with a green arrow that doesn't seem to be showing up):
Vampire Dreams (First in The Victorian Erotic Romance Trilogy)
#104,148 in Kindle books store (paid) [up] 3,937 ranks today (updated hourly)

This was the ranking of the book on December 13 at 5pm:

Vampire Dreams (First in The Victorian Erotic Romance Trilogy)
#99,471 in Kindle books store (paid) 8,614 ranks today (updated hourly)

How many authors would love to see their book rise by almost 10K ranks in one day, almost 5K in one hour, without doing anything--no talking about the book, no promo, no nothing? Oh, and I mentioned the book ISN'T for sale anymore, right?

Something is definitely wrong with this ranking system, but most importantly is that it's junk. A little more investigation showed me that on October 13, 2012, this book that shouldn't exist according to Amazon (and which I'm seeing no sales for after September 4, 2012) was all the way up at #73,257. Again, I ask: how many authors would love to see their books that high in the rankings?

The lowest this book has ever been is #114,526. That occurred on December 2, 2012. And now it seems to be climbing in the rankings despite the fact that no one is buying the book.

So a book that isn't for sale, can't be found on Amazon's site, and shouldn't even have a ranking is doing better than over 900,000 other books on the bookseller's site. Of course, if I asked Amazon or any of their apologists, they'd have some convoluted reason to explain the book that doesn't exist rising in the ranks. Most likely, it would involve the magical algorithm and quickly be as interesting as reading the small print on my credit card agreements.

The problem with claims about a book's ranking for x number of days/hours/minutes whatever, its price, etc. is that this book is not for sale, hasn't been for months, and still rises in the ranks as if it's available. The fact that books in its genre sell more or less shouldn't matter to the status of a book that isn't for sale.

Amazon's rankings should be considered meaningless. It appears they're entirely made up. For all those authors who fret about the rankings, please don't. Your books may be selling or not selling (probably due to Amazon's fictitious sales rankings, unfortunately), but don't worry about the rankings. You can't do anything about them. Really. They're truly fiction.

In fact, I'll go one better. Not only do I think the rankings are made up, but I think Amazon decides who will rise and who won't based on what they think should be popular/what they want to sell. More on that when I get more data. Trust me. I'm on the case.





Friday, December 14, 2012

A Little Candy Cane Kink For Christmas

Candy Kane Kink

Welcome to my stop on the Candy Cane Kink Giveaway Hop and a huge thank you to the hop hosts Nikki from Close Encounters with the Night Kind and author Natasha Blackthorne! Great idea ladies!

Since this is my last giveaway of 2012 and it ends on the day the world is supposed to end, I'm going out with a bang. For this one, I'm giving away the Blood & Dreams Sons of Navarus Box Set that contains the Sons of Navarus prequel Vampire Dreams Revamped, the first two books in the series (Blood Avenged and Blood Betrayed), and one of the new Sons short stories, Longing. It's only available for a limited time for the holidays, so don't miss it!


That's over 500 pages of sexy vampires to love! For more information on all the books included, click on over to their page The Sons of Navarus. And don't miss the books that follow these, Blood Spirit (Sons of Navarus #3) and The Deepest Cut (A Sons of Navarus Short Story)!

So how do you win? It's easy to enter! Just leave a comment with your email address so I can contact you if you win. Then do as many of the Rafflecopter entries as you like (the more you do, the better your chance of winning). The contest is open internationally so all our friends around the world can join in. I'll pick a winner randomly after the giveaway ends and contact them through email so they can have the prize in time for Christmas!

Thanks for stopping by, and I hope your holiday is wonderful!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, December 13, 2012

The Deepest Cut Now Available! #PNR

It's been a busy December for this author, to be sure. I've been unveiling all the new desktop wallpapers over at my website as a gift to readers (if you haven't seen them, definitely check them out! Talina does such a great job.), and a little over a week ago, I released the first Sons of Navarus short story, Longing. For readers of the series, that short gave them a little insight into Thane and his feelings for Sasa.

Now I've released another short story, The Deepest Cut, which deals with Vasilije and Sasa after he found her feeding from Thane. It's available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Kobo and Kindle, Nook, Android, and even iPhone readers can enjoy it. Here's the blurb:

For Vasilije, Sasa is more than just one of his vampires. She's the only vampire he keeps in his life now. That comes with many perks, but also with its fair share of pain as Vasilije can be thoughtless of his empath girlfriend's feelings. His forgetfulness in this area has allowed another Son to befriend Sasa, and the result was Thane's willing assistance in feeding her while Vasilije was once again absent from her side.

Sasa is loyal to her sire and mate, but her mind is plagued with doubts that Vasilije isn't the devoted male she's believed him to be. The ease with which he leaves her makes her wonder if his eyes and other body parts have begun to stray from her. Naturally, she turns to her only true friend for sympathy, and Thane is happy to listen to the woman he secretly loves.

Conflict over a female between two alpha males can lead to a fatal misstep when so much is at stake. The Sons of Navarus can't afford to let their focus slip from deciphering the Prophecy of Idolas and defeating the Archons, and now more than ever they need to be united in their fight to save the vampire world.

This short sits right after Blood Spirit (the third book in the series) in the suggested series reading order. It could technically be read as a stand-alone, but it's so much better with the history of this couple in your mind.

So now it's Blood Prophecy next. I'm hoping that full length book will be available in early 2013. I can promise this: it's going to be a huge turning point in the series and for a lot of the characters' storylines. Don't miss it!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Why I'm Fine With A Buck Sometimes

Until recently, I hadn't considered writing any short stories. As an indie, I have a lot of freedom to do unique things with my stories, but for me, fair pricing is always an issue and I'm not a big fan of the .99 price range.

I think it's time we indies begin to see that the .99 price range for a novella of 30K or worse, for a novel 50K or above is degrading what we do. I know everyone wants to sell books, but I want you to imagine that somewhere like McDonald's began to sell some of their meals for .99.  You may think you were getting a great deal if it were a sale, but if the restaurant kept the price that low, wouldn't you wonder why those meals were so cheap compared to other meals priced up to 7x higher? Wouldn't you begin to think that they must be offering an inferior meal for such a cheap price?

Even as the economy struggles today, people know what cheap means, and it isn't just about price. As indies, do we want readers to believe that a story an author spent months writing and then spent money for professional editing and cover design is only worth .99? I'm sure some feel that way, but I don't. I am a professional who expects to be treated as such, and as a result, I won't charge less than a buck for a novel, no matter how many I want to sell. And I won't buy them either.

Short stories are different, however. While I do have them professionally edited and hire a cover designer, my short stories are around 6K words, so I feel .99 is a fair price for them. Did they take months to write? No. See, for me, that's the line of demarcation. I always pay for the services associated with my books. What changes with shorter stories is the length of time I work on them. While there are challenges associated with writing shorts (especially making sure that the stories have a beginning, middle, and end and they make sense to the series they are found in), they aren't as labor intensive to create, so I don't charge as much.

I will have two short stories out by later this week--Longing and The Deepest Cut--and both will be priced at .99. For readers who have come to know my Sons of Navarus series, the stories revolve around a growing love triangle between Sasa and two of the Sons, her sire Vasilije and Thane, her friend who has long harbored unrequited feelings for her. Those same readers can be sure that the level of writing is the same as in my novels. Nothing will be different but the length.

In some respect, I want to charge merely .99 for these not only because they're short but also because they're really for fans of the series. Reading these two shorts without knowing what occurred in the series so far will mean nothing if the reader hasn't gotten to know the Sons series, but for fans, it's a little more for them about the characters as they wait for the release of Blood Prophecy (the 4th book in the series) early next year.

So I'm okay with a buck sometimes, but I will continue to fight against the bottom basement pricing for indie work. I work too hard on my books to give readers the impression they aren't worth more. Readers want an entertaining story that's well crafted, and that's what they get in my novellas and novels. That's worth more than .99.




Friday, December 7, 2012

Christmas Wishes Blog H0p

Welcome to my stop on the Christmas Wishes Blog Hop! It's great to have you here. I love the Christmas holiday season--the lights, the food (love my Christmas cookies!), and the presents. Ooooh, can't forget the presents. :)

Speaking of presents, that's what we're all about with the giveaway hop, so here's the info on what I'm giving away. One winner receive an ebook copy of my historical novella, Love's Master, another winner will receive an ebook copy of my historical novella Masquerade, and a third winner will receive an ebook copy of Vampire Dreams Revamped and a Sons of Navarus swag pack of romance trading cards, bookmarks, cover flats, and magnets.

Click on the book covers to read each book's blurbs and excerpts!


So how do you enter? Leave a comment below with your email address and complete as many Rafflecopter entries as you like--the more you do, the better your chances of winning! And be sure to stop over at Book Trailer Showcase to enter for the grand prizes of a Kindle Paperwhite, A Nook Glow, and a $90 choice giftcard for either amazon or barnes and noble. Both tablets will come with a book bundle!!  Happy hopping!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Thursday, December 6, 2012

Author Lia Davis Guest Post

Today I welcome author Lia Davis to my blog to talk about her new book Death's Storm and other things writing. So without further ado, take it away Lia!


Writing Fantasy/Paranormal Romance by Lia Davis

Like all new authors, I really didn’t know the difference between fantasy romance and paranormal romance. To be honest, I’m still not sure there is a true definition that defines them.

According Romance Writers of America (RWA) on their subgenres description page of their website, paranormal romance is defined as follows.

 “Romance novels in which the future, a fantasy world, or paranormal happenings are an integral part of the plot.” (RWA, http://www.rwa.org/cs/romance_literature_subgenres)

However, many publishers have taken the general paranormal genre as defined above and split it out: sci-fic, fantasy, and paranormal. And some eBook stores split paranormal between vampires, werewolves, shapshifters, and other genres.

The Divinities series crosses between fantasy and paranormal. I’ve even had a critique partner tell me that Forgotten Visions reads like an urban fantasy in the beginning. That could be mostly due to the reader doesn’t meet the hero until the end of chapter two. Also could be that I show the readers the twins’ loss—the death of Kalissa and Khloe’s parents, which leads Kalissa on her journey and into the arms of her childhood sweetheart she hasn’t seen in fifteen years. Or maybe it’s just the tone in the beginning.

I didn’t set out to write a blended genre romance. It just happened. I write all my stories as they come to me. I do create chapter outlines that only provide the plot points by chapter. Then my characters are free to tell their story, and my muse is free to create the new world.  

The fantasy side of the series is the magical world of the Divinities and the otherworldly beings like elves, pixies, witches, and a wood nymph. There could be other creatures that I haven’t met yet. In Death’s Storm, the readers are taken into another world for a short period. Jagger takes Khloe to the Afterworld.

The paranormal side of the Divinities is the demons and the introduction of a couple of Divinities who can shapeshift. My muse has given me hints of what’s coming. All I can say is it’s going to be a bumpy ride for the Divinities and they need to make new allies to even the score.

I love writing, and I love blending magic, mystery, and paranormal together to bring the readers a fresh new world.

Thank you for having me over today! 
 
~~ GIVEAWAY ~~
Lia is giving away a swag pack to two commenters. Please leave your email address in your comment to qualify.

Title: Death’s Storm, The Divinities, book 2

Author: Lia Davis
Release Date: November 20, 2012
Length: 42,000 words
Genre: Paranormal Romance

Blurb:

Technical genius and demi-goddess--aka Divinity--Khloe Bradenton relies on no one for help, and she definitely doesn’t need comfort from anyone other than her twin. After her parents died by the demons’ hands over two years ago, she has graciously stepped up to her place in the war between demons and witches. When a creature far more dangerous than the ones responsible for killing her parents claims he is her guardian, she is torn between her desires for the dark predator and the painful loss she has endured at the hands of her enemies.

One of the last death demons still in existence, Jagger has pledged his life to the Goddess Hecate. Charged with the guardianship over the Divinities, he is never to approach them, but to aid them from a distance. When the firestorm, Khloe, sacrifices herself to save her twin and best friend and becomes the prey, he has no choice but to reveal himself to her. He is taken by surprise when the need to claim her as his own emerges. A desire he has never felt before could be more dangerous than the demons out to destroy them.    

Now Available at Amazon | B&N | ARe | Kobo

Excerpt 1:
Stepping off the curb to head to the car, Khloe stilled and let the warm air caress her skin. An electrical charge that only the select few magickin—like her and the other Divinities—could detect was palpable in the humid summer air.
Her spine tingled as the supernatural energy drifted on the wind, putting her on full alert. Reaching out with her senses, she relaxed. A little. The energy was familiar in an odd kind of way. Her admirer was nearby.
More like a stalker, really, without the creepy love letters and phone calls.
For the last month, someone had watched her and followed her every move. When the entity was near, a warm shiver rolled over her skin like a caress. The energy didn’t come from a human. Demon? Maybe. But, the power was too intense to be any demonic creature she’d come in contact with. She considered one of the gods, but that didn’t make sense either. The gods wouldn’t stalk her. They would send a messenger or deliver their message in person. She and the others had also thought it could be a guardian.
Whatever the entity was, it annoyed the hell out of her to be followed around and spied upon.
She scanned to mall parking lot and the sidewalk that lead to the various shops. Nothing remotely threatening came into view or reached out to her supernatural senses. Then again, she never saw anything when she sensed the presence. It had shown up last month, right after she and Kalissa had been thrust into an ancient war between witches and demons.
That was when she and Kalissa found a note from their mother telling them about the Sinew—a crystal sphere that held the magic of the worlds—and sent Kalissa on a mission to retrieve it. As Divinities, it was their duty to protect magickin from Khan, the new Bastard Lord of the Underworld.
Excerpt 2:
Jagger tossed the Amiddian to the side, stepped away from the overturned van, and froze. Khloe stood on the shoulder of the road about fifteen feet ahead, and watched him. Her pink-streaked blond hair framed her oval face, making her look like a pissed off angel. He took a step forward and felt the presence of another demon. He turned to the new energy to see a horned, blue-skinned demon advancing toward Khloe.
Fuck. Where were they coming from?
Letting out a low growl, Jagger materialized in front of the demon and grabbed him by the front of his shirt. Holding the hell-spawn off the ground, Jagger let his fangs drop. “What do you want with her?”
The demon narrowed his eyes and smirked, but said nothing.
Tightening his grip, Jagger gave the demon one more chance. “You can tell me, or I’ll drain the memories from your useless soul.”
The idiot laughed and vanished.
Fuck! No one should have been able to flash from his hold. He surrounded them with a spell for just that reason. There was only one possibility. Khan had a power source just like Jagger suspected.
Fisting his hands to his side, he whirled around to find Khloe gone. Great. Another complication. Scenting the air, he picked up on her chocolate-rose fragrance and rushed into the forest. Several feet into the trees and brush, he found her.
She wasn’t alone. A Regal—the imperial guards of Khan and the most powerful demons in the Underworld—stood over her, with his hand gripping her arm.
Rage ran in Jagger’s veins, fueling his need to protect her and kill for her.
He soon discovered his Khloe was a fireball. She kicked the Regal in the balls, taking the demon to the ground. Turning on her heels, she took off again, but not before he caught the scent of blood.
A deep growl ripped from his throat, and he thrust his hand toward the male struggling to stand, hitting him with a ball of fire. The demon puffed into a black pile of dust.
No one harmed what belonged to him and lived.

Author Bio:

Lia Davis is a mother to two young adults and two very special kitties, a wife to her soul mate, a paranormal romance author, graphic designer, and co-owner to Fated Desires Publishing, LLC. She and her family live in Northeast Florida battling hurricanes and very humid summers. But it’s her home and she loves it!

An accounting major, Lia has always been a dreamer with a very active imagination. The wheels in her head never stop. She ventured into the world of writing and publishing in 2008 and loves it more than she imagined. Writing and designing are stress relievers that allow her to go off in her corner of the house and enter into another world that she created, leaving real life where it belongs.

Her favorite things are spending time with family, traveling, reading, writing, chocolate, coffee, nature and hanging out with her kitties.






Monday, December 3, 2012

Blood & Dreams Sons of Navarus Box Set

It's holiday time, so in addition to the giveaway hops and desktop wallpapers I have for readers to show how much I love them, I have another goody for them. I've put together the Blood & Dreams Sons of Navarus Box Set, including Vampire Dreams Revamped, Blood Avenged, Blood Betrayed, AND a brand new never seen before Sons short story entitled Longing. The box set is available now at Amazon and B&N, and it's only scheduled to be around for the holidays, so don't miss it!

The events in the new short story, Longing, take place between Blood Betrayed (Book #2 in the series) and Blood Spirit (Book #3). It's told from the two characters featured, Thane and Sasa, and readers will have a LOT more insight into Thane after reading this.

So what's it about? Here's a hint: Remember when you read about Thane feeding Sasa when Vasilije was gone in Blood Spirit? That wasn't the first time that had happened...

I've already been asked if Longing will be available for single sale, and the answer is maybe.  I hadn't thought about it until I began getting the questions about it, but I'm considering it for readers who've already enjoyed the other books in the set. If you think I should do it, let me know. :)

Thanks so much to all the readers who email me, FB and tweet me, and leave comments to tell me how much they love my books. You're the best! And to those of you who haven't tried out those delicious vampires yet, I hope you can take this chance to try them out at the holiday sale price.

Happy Holidays!



Saturday, December 1, 2012

December #Ebook Goodies

I have often said I have an addiction to these hops, and the fact that I signed up for two at the same time pretty much seals the deal. Since I don't like to go back on my word, today's post is for two hops, so I hope you'll enter both.

The first hop is the Once Upon a Blog Hop, and it's dedicated to the fairy tales we all loved as children. Thanks to our hosts Holly from Full Moon Bites and Natalie-Nicole. I remember my favorite was Beauty and The Beast, and when the movie came out and I had a little girl of my own to share it with, we would watch that movie over and over. We both loved it!

I think I must have been channeling that story when I began writing my book Stolen Destiny because it has many of the same themes that the fairytale has. The hero, Varek, is very rough around the edges (a beast, of sorts) and has been forced to pay for his behavior. The heroine, Callia, is a kind and beautiful soul who believes in the goodness of others, but she's no fool. Because her heart is open, she can see Varek is someone she can love. The course of true love never ran smoothly, though, and of course, there's an obstacle in the way to their final HEA--a villain named Amon, a powerful man who sees Callia's gentle heart and wants her to love him. It's a bit sexier than Beauty and the Beast, but the themes are shared ones.


Here's the blurb: Released from Nil to find a murderer, a prison-hardened Varek Leale is convinced no woman deserves the man he’s become, but his Aeveren destiny makes him succumb to sweet and sexy Callia Reynolds.  To catch the murderer, they turn to Amon Kalins, an ancient Aeveren with the power to control time. But Amon isn’t a man to trifle with and when he wants something, he’ll use his considerable powers, devastating charm, and good looks to get it. 

What Amon wants is Callia. When he manipulates time and seduces Callia away, Varek must turn to the people who set him free for help to get her back.  But the Council doesn’t do anything without requiring something in return, and what they want is Amon Kalins, one of the most powerful Aeveren ever.  Varek will do what he must to capture him and find Callia because if he doesn’t, she’ll be lost to him for untold lifetimes.

For this giveaway, two winners will receive ebook copies of my book Stolen Destiny. To enter, leave a comment below with your email address and do as many of the Rafflecopter entries as you like. :) If you're only entering the Once Upon A Blog Hop Giveaway, scroll down to the Rafflecopter to complete your entries and then leave a comment. If not, read on for more giveaway fun!





Next up is the Merry Menage Giveaway Hop. Thanks to the hosts Day Dreaming, My Secret Romance, and The Book Tart! For this hop, I thought I'd talk about my favorite thing about the holidays.

The food. I love to bake cookies, and I've been known to make up to 20 varieties, from the wonderful standby sugar cookies to cranberry macaroons to rum cookies that are to die for. Mmmmmm.....gifts are great, but I adore the treats for the holidays.

What is your favorite part of the season?


Okay, since this is the sexier of the two hops, I'm giving away an ebook copy of the sexy first book in my Sons of Navarus series, Blood Avenged. Here's a little taste of that story:

I am everything you desire. I am vampire.

Powerful and manipulative, Vasilije does as he pleases. A vampire beholden to no one, he takes what he desires, drinking deeply the pleasures this life has to offer.

When one of his own is staked, Vasilije must travel to New Orleans to exact his revenge. There he meets Sasa, a beautiful woman who arouses him like no other has for centuries. Vasilije’s need for vengeance is equaled only by his passion for her, but what he finds in his revenge is just the beginning...


For a very sexy excerpt (NOT for the workplace or for little eyes behind you :), click HERE (will open a new page).

To enter this giveaway, it's the same as above: be sure to leave a comment (if you're entering both giveaways, just leave one big comment with your email address) and do as many Rafflecopter entries as you like.

Both giveaways are open internationally, so an email gets you in. If you already follow me in any of the places, then remember to snag those entry points. Good luck, and happy hopping!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, November 30, 2012

Vampire Author Chat #Urbanfantasy #PNR #romance



I'm at Coffee Time Romance today from 10 am to noon and then again later tonight with other authors of vampire romance, so stop over and check it out! There will be giveaways, excerpts/blurbs, and I might even give a little taste of my upcoming book in the Sons series.

I hope to see you there! Just click over to the Latte Lounge to find us. :)

Monday, November 26, 2012

#CyberMonday Blowout at All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks is having a Cyber Monday 50% off sale, so all my books sold there are available for a steal! This includes every book in the Sons of Navarus series, but it doesn't include Stolen Destiny and Destiny Redeemed. So if you're looking to snag a great book at a great price, head on over there and take advantage of this ONE DAY sale.

Happy shopping!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Black Friday Blog H0p #PNR

I don't do the shopping thing on Black Friday because I'm liable to get arrested if someone elbows me out of the way for the last Sing Along Elmo, so hanging out hopping around blogs and entering for goodies is a much safer way for me to spend the day. Thanks for stopping by my part in the hop!

For me, these one day hops are the best! No waiting to see who won. One day and done. I love it! So while you finish off those turkey leftovers, you can enter to win a bunch of prizes. Here's the info: 

There will be over 200 giveaways total on all the blogs participating.

But that's not all....

We have 
THREE grand prizes. You as a reader can go to EACH blog and comment with your email address and be entered to win. Yep, you can enter over 200 times!

Now what are those prizes?

1st Grand Prize: A Kindle Fire or Nook Tablet
2nd Grand Prize: A $75 Amazon or B&N Gift Card
3rd Grand Prize: A Swag Pack that contains paperbacks, ebooks, 50+ bookmarks, cover flats, magnets, pens, coffee cozies, and more!


Here at my blog I'm giving away three (3) ebook copies of Destiny Redeemed, one of the books in my Destined Ones Series. Here's the blurb:

Sentenced to spend the rest of his three remaining lifetimes in Nil, Amon Kalins is freed with the help of his Sidhe servant, Gethen, but now he must accept his life is never to be his again as the Council won't rest until he's safely back imprisoned within Nil's cold walls. Broken and nearly dead from his time in prison, Amon is saved by an Aeveren healer named Althea Forester. As a healer, Thea has served her people for forty-five lifetimes, never having a destined one and always knowing each lifetime would ultimately end with her alone. But destiny hasn't forgotten her.

Drawn to the seductive Amon, Thea quickly becomes a pawn the Council uses to trap him. Taken prisoner by the sadistic leader of the rebel group, the Soren, Thea must survive the vicious world of the people hellbent on taking her destined one away forever, and Amon must risk everything dear to him to free her from those who would sacrifice her to claim the bigger prize and return him to Nil.

Of all the characters I've had the pleasure to write, Amon is one of my favorites. I know you'll enjoy reading his story as much as I enjoyed writing it. To read an excerpt and some of the rave reviews the book's received, visit its page on my blog at http://gbisset.blogspot.com/p/destiny-redeemed.html


So what do you have to do to enter? First, be sure to leave a comment with your email address. It doesn't have to be anything big, but to be entered to win the grand prizes and to be sure I have a way to contact the winner, there has to be at least an email address. But I love comments too! Then fill out as many of the Rafflecopter entries as you like (the more you do, the better the chances of winning!).

I'll choose the three winners by random and contact them by email after the giveaway is over. Have a wonderful day, and happy hopping!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Changes #amwriting #urbanfantasy #paranormal

Recently, I've been mentioning that the Sons of Navarus would be going through some changes. I haven't really discussed them completely anywhere because I just don't do that. I don't announce everything that's going on with me. It's not my style. However, since I've had a number of people ask me, I figured I'd explain.

In some stories of mine, I've struggled with the need for a HEA. Yes, I know that's a requirement in the romance genre (no matter how much I think it's unnecessary). My book Destiny Redeemed has a HEA, despite the fact that it was a chore to finish the book that way. Amon simply isn't a man who would get a happy ending. I adore the character, but he just wouldn't. Fate has a nasty way of making you pay, and after years of being a bad man (no matter how sexy he is), he just wouldn't be given a free pass with a woman like Thea.

But because it's a paranormal romance, that's the way it has to be.

That was the first time as an author I chafed at the restrictions of the romance genre. In many ways, romance writing makes things easy for me. In stories such as Masquerade, I feel justified in giving the characters a happy ending. Nikolai and Annelisa deserve to be happy with one another. The story didn't reveal any true reason why they shouldn't, so an HEA fits well.

Then I began writing the Sons of Navarus series and that issue with the HEA came back again. From the first book, the constraints of the genre were pressing down on me. I adore Vasilije (almost as much as I adore Amon who came before him), but it was a stretch to create an HEA at the end of Blood Avenged. And it isn't because Sasa isn't the kind of woman he'd go for. No. She's exactly the type he'd want. Despite the belief that strength means mouthiness or aggressiveness, Sasa is strong. A male like Vasilije brings that strength out in a female like her. And she brings out the Alpha in him. The reason an HEA is a difficult fit for them is because as a dominant male, he'd likely do things that would put a strain on the relationship.

You see, the Sons refused to just live happily ever after. They keep living and inevitably the traits that make them who they are complicate things.

The story of the Sons has never been just romantic. I knew that when I began writing the series. By the second book, the Prophecy of Idolas and the civil war with the Archons began encroaching on the romantic storyline. Blood Betrayed worked well because the story of Saint and Solenne wasn't just a love story but one about the dynamic between two brothers and the woman who came between them. The reference to betrayal in the title is as much about what Teagan did to Saint as what Solenne did.

But then came Blood Spirit.  I love that book, but for all the reasons that reviewers sometimes struggle with it. It's got a ton of non-romantic storyline in it. The Archons are on the rise, Ramiel and Thane (along with Kali) are figuring out more about the Prophecy of Idolas, and Vasilije is dealing with a trauma that isn't easily soothed with just romance and sex. Running alongside that is the romance between Terek and Ilona. Terek is a complicated male--a warrior for his kind, a monk in his human life, a vampire sire who has worked hard to turn as many vampires as possible to ensure the continuation of his race. But he has some complicated issues that I only got to dance around because the book was technically considered romance.

And that's the crux of the problem. Romance requires me to simplify things I want to explore. This became all too clear as I began to write Blood Prophecy and make decisions on the series arc for the rest of the books. By the middle of Ramiel's book, I was stuck. What I had planned for the story wasn't going to work with the expectations of romance readers.

So I began to flesh out some things for future stories in the series, hoping that this would fix the logjam in my mind, but that only made it more obvious that it was time to leave paranormal romance behind. By the time I'd decided what Sion's background was, I'd already closed the door to paranormal romance for this series.

But I didn't know what to do. I considered discontinuing the series entirely, but you know what? This is a damn good story and I enjoy writing it. That meant I was going to have to restructure the series to work differently.

It's been a labor of love doing just that. Because I'm not constrained by the need for an HEA, I can do things that work more organically. Vasilije and Sasa will still begin the series, and Saint and Solenne's story will still figure prominently (and will again be important because of events that are about to occur with the Archon, Marc Verrater). Will there be romance and sex? Yes, but they won't be the focus. The focus will be the Sons and a new character coming in soon and their fight against the Archons for control of the vampire world.

For fans of the series who wonder about Ramiel's story, I am still writing it but that will appear in a different way than I first intended. Will he still have a love interest? Yes, he will. It's always been an integral part of the series storyline, but it won't be the only focus of his storyline. He's much more than just a sexy male vampire, and now I can let him be himself in the story.

I hope readers will continue to follow the Sons series. While I do write a pretty hot sex scene (and will continue to do so), the romance and sex were never all there was to love about the Sons and their books. In the end, it's always been the story that's the great part--the story of eight warriors descended from the gods who must defend their world from those who seek to enslave all vampires. I don't know how it will be characterized. A few fellow authors tell me it has always been more urban fantasy/paranormal fiction than paranormal romance because there's so much non-romance storyline, so maybe that's what the Sons series will be. I don't know. What I do know is that as an author, I need to be true to myself and true to the story I want to write. So that's what I'm doing, and I've never been happier.


Friday, November 16, 2012

Giving Thanks For The Good Things In Life

I was going to write a blistering post today about how some indie authors who write historical fiction seem to be totally ignorant of history (and the need for an editor!) and how the bloggers who review those same historically incorrect books as great look foolish, but half way through that post my head almost exploded in disgust at both parties, so instead today I chose to be thankful for the good things in my life.

Sometimes it's difficult to be thankful when you're in the middle of nonsense. That's why I'm making the effort today. I think it's worth the time, and at the very least it will make me feel good. Here's to hoping it makes you want to think of all the good things you have in your life.

So what am I thankful for?

My family--I have a very small family, but they're good people who make me smile more than frown. In the big scheme of things, that's worth a lot. I just wish they'd clean the bathroom more often.

My knowledge--My years in school gave me so much to be thankful for. (Trying not to go off on the ignorance that makes my subject in romance such a fucking shambles....serenity now...) As I skip around the Internet and teach my classes each day, I realize that my education was a great gift. But it's not just knowledge that my education gave me. It's the tools to continue learning things that help me every day.

My parents--In truth, my parents were a bit of a train wreck. My mother spent most of my childhood perfecting her role as a martyr, and my father was a drunk. But as I told a friend last night, I can see that those years were pretty good compared to many other people's. My parents were, above everything else, hardworking people who knew right from wrong and taught their daughter the same. In a world of frauds, they were the real deal and helped me know how to spot that.

My friends--Thanks to the people who make me laugh so hard my stomach muscles hurt and listen to me when I'm tilting at windmills. You do so much to make my life great.

My writing--I put this last, but that doesn't mean it's the least important. I don't spend my time pontificating about muses or claiming I write because of some voices in my head or some absolute need to lest I suffer without pen in hand. None of that is true. What is true is that I write because it brings me happiness. That's it. Nothing melodramatic. I just enjoy it, so I write. That I can because I possess the skill helps to make this love a profitable one, but in the end, I write because it makes me happy. I'm thankful I've found something that does that.

Here's to you having a wonderful Thanksgiving and every day appreciating what makes your life wonderful!


Saturday, November 10, 2012

The Phrase Doctor Editors #amwriting #amediting

A few weeks ago, I was sitting with my editor, Yvonne, bemoaning the dreadful state of editing in the indie books I'd read recently. As an editor myself for over a decade, I was disturbed to see potentially great stories stopped in their tracks by poor grammar, spelling issues, and structural problems that ruined the plots. Yvonne couldn't believe how little editing was evident in the books. As we talked about how sad it was that these stories would never be taken seriously because of the lack of editing (and I complained about how these issues only reinforced in many people's minds the incorrect notion that all indie writing was junk), we decided that we wanted to do something about it.

Out of that discussion came The Phrase Doctor. Between the two of us, we have nearly 20 years experience as professors in physics, history, and writing, in addition to over a decade of editing experience. Most of all, we believe that good writing deserves the best editing possible.

Since that day, we've been busy helping authors make their work the best it can be. Because of our expertise and my indie writing experience, we can offer line and content edits, in addition to fact checking on fiction and nonfiction works. It's been so great knowing that the time we put into making books shine helps authors not only in their sales but also in their reputations.

If you're an author and you want great editing at a reasonable price, find us at http://www.thephrasedoctor.com/  We look forward to working with you!



Thursday, November 8, 2012

Celebrate Now Before The End Comes

I'm one of those souls who has always had a problem with stores putting up their Christmas decorations before Black Friday. I hate the season to be rushed, and the trend of putting holiday stuff up even before Halloween is over is just ridiculous.

Happy Hallowthanksmas!

This year the decorations seemed to come out even earlier. And the trend has now caught on outside of retail. There are people in my neighborhood who have their Christmas lights up AND on every night. Hell, I just had my son take down the Halloween lights and decorations (which is something I fought against for years--lights for anytime but Christmas seems stupid, but he wanted to do them, so...)

I think I know why everything is so rushed this year. It's those damn Mayans' fault. It's the end of the world thing. (You can thank me for not making the R.E.M. reference there. That song never leaves the mind once it gets in. Oops, now it's there. Damn R.E.M!) 

The world is supposed to end on December 21, so the thought seems to be why not get as much Christmas as you can before disaster comes raining on our heads? I guess I can understand that. I enjoy Christmas, so the thought that I won't get to see another one makes me sad. I think the people I'm seeing out there subconsciously think that so they have Christmas lights up a month earlier than usual to squeeze as much holiday cheer as possible out of the remaining days.

For once I won't fight a trend. While I don't plan on supporting this next year if the world doesn't end on the winter solstice, I'm going to enjoy it this year.  So I'm going with the idea of celebrating as much as I can before the end comes. I'll be grabbing the egg nog later today and since it's supposed to warm up this weekend, I'll be sending the boy out to put up the Christmas lights. And in that spirit, here's my Christmas tree, newly purchased last night and up in my foyer.


I'll be putting the decorations on it this weekend. But if the world doesn't end on December 21, 2012, next year, I'm back to this:




Monday, November 5, 2012

Buy Blood Avenged and Support #Redcross #Relief


All day today, Monday, November 5, all proceeds from sales of Blood Avenged at Amazon will be donated to the Red Cross to help with Hurricane Sandy relief. Please help by grabbing a copy there today. It's an erotic paranormal romance, but even if that genre isn't your taste, it's for a good cause. Remember, if you own a copy already, you can always buy another and gift it to someone.

Thanks for helping me help the people who need it most after this devastating storm.

Buy Link: http://www.amazon.com/Blood-Avenged-Sons-Navarus-ebook/dp/B006L8S59S/


Friday, November 2, 2012

Grab Blood Avenged For A Good Cause #redcross #relief

I spent the last few days glued to the television watching the devastation on the East coast unfold before my eyes. As the child of New Yorkers and a Jersey girl by birth, it breaks my heart to see the places and people I've always held so dear in my heart suffer. Up and down the coast, the mess that Hurricane Sandy has left is heartbreaking.

The terrible scenes made me want to do something, so this Monday, November 5, all proceeds from the sale of my book Blood Avenged at Amazon will be donated to the Red Cross to help in the Hurricane Sandy relief efforts. Please help by grabbing a copy there that day. It's an erotic paranormal romance, but even if that genre isn't your taste, it's for a good cause.

Thanks for helping me help the people who need it most after this devastating storm.



Thursday, November 1, 2012

Paranormal Fall Fling W!nners and An Award

The Paranormal Fall Fling is over, and it was a great one! There were over 35,000 entries for the grand prizes of the two giftcards and swag prize pack. Thanks to all the folks who came by and entered, and special thanks to all those who shared and tweeted the giveaway to make it so successful.

So I guess you want to know who the winners are, right? Okay. Here goes:

Winner of the Second Prize, a Sons of Navarus swag prize pack:  Shadow Kohler

Winner of the First Prize, a $10 Amazon gift card and a Sons swag pack:  Carin Walker

Winner of the Grand Prize, a $50 Amazon gift card:  Elizabeth Haney

Congratulations to all the winners! I'll be contacting you to let you know today.


And I won something last night. GraveTells blog emailed me to let me know that I was voted the Readers' Choice Favorite Author for October 2012!  Wow!  Thanks to everyone who voted. I'm flattered. :) 

Check back for the announcement of the winners of the remaining two giveaway hops going on through midnight tonight, the Wicked After Dark Hop and the Moonlight Masquerade Hop.

Have a great Thursday everyone!



Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Treats for Halloween!

Today is the last day of the Paranormal Fall Fling and for the last two stops on this mammoth tour I'm over at the wonderful Hesperia Loves Books for a second day (or more correctly, Terek is over there telling readers about being vampire) and at my dear friend Talina's blog, Bookin' It Reviews. Stop over at each but be sure to enter the Paranormal Fall Fling on this last day to be eligible to win the great grand prizes. I'll be giving away a $10 gift card and a $50 gift card to Amazon, along with a huge swag pack prize tomorrow. Just click on the link above and enter to win!

It's back to work and school around these parts after Sandy roared through. My friends on the coast and everywhere Sandy took her tour of devastation are in my heart, and I pray you're safe and sound. Things can be replaced, but you and your loved ones safe is what truly matters.

Happy Samhain!




Monday, October 29, 2012

Interview with Three Vampires

The Paranormal Fall Fling is in its last days, so be sure to enter to win the fabulous grand prizes that will be given away on November 1. Today on the Fling I'm at Bitten By Paranormal Romance for their Characterfest with an interview with not one, not two, but three characters of mine:  Vasilije, Saint, and Terek, the heroes of my first three Sons of Navarus books. If you've met these three, you know it was an interesting time, to say the least, and if you haven't met them, this will give you a chance to find out a little about these three very different males.

I'm off to hunker down and ride Hurricane Sandy out today. It's already very windy here. Stay safe, my friends!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Moonlight Masquerade H0p

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Welcome to my stop on the Moonlight Masquerade Hop! Thanks to the hosts My Secret Romance blog and Day Dreaming blog! Since this is about costumes and masks and other sexy things, I figured the perfect prize would be an ebook copy of my book, Masquerade.

Here's the blurb:

Annelisa Fielding has had the blessings of wealth her entire life, thanks to her industrialist father. However, there is one thing even he can't give her: a title. So he arranges a marriage between his daughter and the Earl of Swindon, Thornton Sutcliffe. As long as his future bride is a virgin, the Earl will tolerate the marrying down because in return for taking Annelisa as his wife, her father will pay off his debts. Everyone wins, as far as the men are concerned, but Annelisa wants more out of marriage than a title and is willing to wait. But time is running out. If she doesn't find some way out of the marriage and fast, in one month she'll become Lady Annelisa Sutcliffe.

The solution to her problem? Count Nikolai Shetkolov, a diplomat in the service of the Tsar and stationed in England. Single, powerful, and sexier than any man Annelisa has ever laid eyes on, Nikolai is the perfect choice to help a young lady lose the one thing her odious future husband prizes most. But Annelisa will have to watch out or she may get be more than she bargained for with Nikolai.
I love the idea of a masquerade party, and when I began writing the book I knew I needed a way for Annelisa to be able to seduce Nikolai. Since it's set in the Victorian Period, she couldn't exactly just saunter up and tell him she wants him. So a masquerade was the perfect plan.

Here's a little of their first "meeting" at the party:

He stood alone near the entrance to the ballroom, almost as if he were waiting for someone. All she had to do was make him interested in her and seduce him into joining her in some secluded spot nearby. Taking another deep breath, Annelisa willed away the butterflies in her stomach and reminded herself she had to succeed if she wanted to keep her freedom.
In her most alluring voice, she began. “Monsieur?”
He turned toward her and immediately she registered that he appeared different this night.
“Madame?”
“Mademoiselle, monsieur.”
“Pardon moi, mademoiselle.”
Annelisa was impressed by his accent. While his harsher Russian accent tinged his speech when he spoke English, it was absent as he spoke French.
“No need to apologize, sir,” she answered in a heavy French accent.
“You speak English?” he asked, his Russian accent obvious once again.
“Of course! We are in England.”
As they spoke, she studied his face for any sign he was interested. In just a short time, she saw she’d piqued his interest.
“Allow me to introduce myself. I am Count Nikolai Shetkolov, diplomat for Tsar Alexander II.”
Annelisa extended her gloved hand, and he bowed to place a kiss on the back of it.
“And who are you, mademoiselle?”
“I am the goddess Aphrodite, of course!” she teased.
Nikolai smiled. “No, I meant what is your name.”
Annelisa had decided to use the name of a woman her governess had told her about—a French woman she’d known when she was a child.
“Violet Moceanu.”
“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Miss Moceanu.”
“Are you enjoying yourself, Count? You don’t dance?”
Annelisa watched him change as a stiffness overcame him.
“Not particularly well, my lady, but I will make an exception for you.”
Behind her mask, Annelisa beamed. This was going to be even easier than she’d hoped.
“Perhaps later. For now, I prefer to enjoy your company this way.”
She watched as relief washed over him and his body relaxed. “I think I’d like to take a walk outside for some fresh air. Would you care to join me?”
“Absolutely, Miss Moceanu.”
Taking her arm in his, he guided her through the library to the outside. As they strolled around the well-manicured Italian gardens famous to the Stewart mansion, they made conversation while Annelisa’s eyes scanned the area for the place she’d bring her plan to fruition.
Just the way he spoke to her as if she were an intelligent being impressed her. She’d made a good choice in Nikolai, but as they continued to walk the mansion’s grounds, she worried he might be a little too respectful to do what she needed him to do.
Subtly, she began stroking his arm with her free hand and then slid her gloved fingers inside his sleeve to touch his wrist. Even through the fabric, she felt the heat of his skin and sensed his pulse quicken as they continued their conversation.
She was sure he was interested. Now if she could induce him to make a move, she’d willingly oblige him and achieve her goal.
Stopping behind a large hedge out of the view of the other partygoers, she looked up at him and moistened her lips. Fear thrummed in her veins as she waited for him to act on her signals. What if he was too honorable to help her complete her plan? For a long moment, she wondered if she would fail as the thought of marrying Thornton Sutcliffe made her heart sink.
Nikolai touched her mask and she quickly grabbed his hand to stop him.
“No.”
“How am I to give you what you’ve been telling me you want if I can’t see your face?”
“The mask must stay.”
Despite his obvious confusion, her requirement didn’t deter him. Gently, he pressed his lips to hers and kissed her. Annelisa’s heart pounded against her chest at the thought that this was her first real kiss. Suddenly, fear raced through her. Was she doing it correctly? Would he know she was inexperienced in this, and therefore, in what she hoped would follow and end their tryst prematurely?

Masquerade is one of my favorite stories. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. So how do you enter? Easy. :)  Just fill out the Rafflecopter with all the entries you choose to do--the more you do, the better your chance of winning. The giveaway is open internationally, so an email in your comment gets you in.

Good luck, and have fun hopping around!


a Rafflecopter giveaway