Friday, January 31, 2014

Stately Pleasures by Lucy Felthouse ~ Interview ~ Excerpt ~

Stately Pleasures 
by Lucy Felthouse


Crystal: Lucy Felthouse has stopped by today and so graciously agreed to answered a few questions for us.  Welcome Lucy, I'm so happy to have you here today. Would you share a little bit about yourself with us today?

Lucy: My name is Lucy Felthouse and I write erotica and erotic romance. I live in Derbyshire in the UK. I run my own business ( That, along with my writing and editing work, take up my work time. In my free time I enjoy reading, knitting, watching TV and films, spending time with my other half and playing with my dog, Scamp.

Crystal: Where did you come up with the idea for latest release?

Lucy: The idea for Stately Pleasures had been bubbling away in the back of my mind for a while. It comes from my love of visiting stately homes and historical properties. The more I wrote erotica and erotic romance, the more my mind started to twist seemingly innocent things – including some of the props you’ll see in the book. That, along with my filthy imagination, provided plenty of material for this kinky book.

Crystal: What are you currently working on?

Lucy:  I’m currently working on a novella for Ellora’s Cave, that’s part of an existing series they have out. Fingers crossed they’ll accept it.

Crystal: Do you have any special routine that you follow when you are writing? 

Lucy: No, not at all. I tend to just do whatever works. Sometimes I’m in the mood for music, sometimes I’m not. 99.9% of the time, I work directly onto my laptop, and occasionally I’ll write in a notebook. As long as the work gets done, I don’t worry about it too much.

Crystal: Did you have to do a lot of research for this book or any other? If so do you have a fascinating fact that you have learned you would like to share with us?

Lucy: I didn’t have to do a lot of research, because all of it came from my filthy imagination. But I wanted to get a better idea of what Davenport Manor looked like—just in my mind—so I visited lots of stately homes and gardens while I was writing the book. It helped to provide inspiration for other scenes, too. I don’t remember learning any fascinating facts, I’m afraid. It was a while back!

Crystal: Who are some of your favorite authors that you like to read?

Lucy: I enjoy Richelle Mead, Rachel Caine, Portia Da Costa, Janine Ashbless, Anne Rice and many more. I read a lot, and widely!

Crystal:  Is there a genre you haven't written that you would like to try?

Lucy: I’d really like to write an erotic spy thriller. I’ve taken one step closer, as the book I’ve just finished writing is an erotic thriller, but it’s a paranormal thriller, rather than a spy thriller. At the moment, I have a list of books to write, but I’m sure at some point I’ll be able to squeeze a spy thriller into my schedule. Honestly, though, as long as I’m writing something I enjoy, I don’t mind exactly what it is, or what genre.

One day, I’m sure, I’ll write something mainstream, too. Whether it be romance, a thriller, a paranormal... who knows? But while I still have all these dirty ideas floating around my mind, I’m going to make use of them!

Crystal: Do you have a favorite scene you would like to share with us?

Author's Favorite Scene Excerpt: 

A glint appeared in Ethan’s eyes, and without hesitation he took the elaborate hint. His long fingers slipped between her already swollen nether lips and touched the sensitive skin there. He gasped, and Alice looked down in alarm, then back up to Ethan, a question in her eyes.
‘You’re just so wet, is all. I didn’t think it was possible, but you’re making me even harder.’ He grabbed her free hand and pressed it to the stiff length which threatened to burst from his trousers.
Now it was Alice’s turn to exclaim. And because her mind and body were befuddled with lust, she said something she’d never have said otherwise. ‘Hmm. I’m very wet and you’re extremely hard. Perhaps we should do something about it.’
Ethan raised his eyebrows at her words, then gave a wicked smile. ‘You know, I think you’re absolutely right. Bedroom?’
Alice shook her head. ‘Bollocks to the bedroom. I want you right now, here.’ She swallowed hard – had she really said that? But he’d already looked away from her face and was in the process of retrieving a condom from his wallet. She willed Ethan to rubber up quickly.
Mercifully, he did. She barely had time to look at his cock before he was rubbing it up and down her slick pout, knocking against her clit with each stroke. He grasped his shaft with his index finger and thumb, bringing the head up against her entrance, and was just about to push inside when Alice choked out a hasty, ‘Wait!’
He looked incredibly confused until she grabbed the waistband of her thong and began to wriggle madly. He took the hint and lifted her thighs, helping her as she pulled the material past her ample bottom, then placed her gently back down on the worktop before batting her hands away and dragging the underwear down her legs and dropping them on the floor.
Alice gave a bashful giggle. ‘Thanks. They were in the way. Now, where were we?’
Ethan said nothing. Instead, he captured her mouth in a soul-searing kiss, meaning she couldn’t see what else he was doing. And that happened to be pushing his long, thick cock between her fattened pussy lips, seeking her entrance and inching inside. She moaned into his mouth. The sound seemed to spur him on – suddenly he went from sliding gradually into her slick cunt to gripping her hips and burying himself balls-deep inside her in one desperate movement.
Alice couldn’t help the prolonged moan she made. She was plenty lubricated, so the sudden invasion of Ethan’s cock hadn’t hurt, but it had sure surprised her. Her inner walls stretched to accommodate him, and she squeezed her pelvic floor muscles almost violently, savouring the feeling of the hardness inside her, and smirking against his lips when he groaned.
Jerking her hips impatiently, Alice was delighted when Ethan started to move inside her. He shifted deliberately, rolling his pelvis so his pubic bone stimulated her clit with each movement. She showed her pleasure at his efforts by sucking his bottom lip into her mouth, nibbling it gently as his tongue flicked around her top lip, tickling the sensitive skin. She giggled, reaching her hands around to get a handful of Ethan’s arse. Just because she couldn’t see the goods right now didn’t mean she shouldn’t enjoy them.
And enjoy them she did. As was fitting for a man with his physique, his bum was firm and strong, and the way the muscles flexed as he thrust into her felt totally divine beneath her fingers. She pulled at him, urging him deeper, harder, and pulled away from his mouth with a gasp as he complied, holding on to her tightly so she wouldn’t slip away as he fucked her ferociously on her kitchen counter. Soon to be ex-kitchen counter.
The fact she’d been celibate for heaven knew how long, combined with her not inconsiderable attraction to Ethan and his obvious skills in the bedroom – well, kitchen – department meant her orgasm approached quickly. Digging her fingernails into his buttocks in the dizzy heights of lust, she yelped as he increased the speed and depth of his thrusts. She hadn’t thought it was possible, and half-wondered if the room would soon be filled with the scent of burning rubber. A laugh bubbled from her lips.
‘Something funny, Alice?’
He looked serious, so she shook her head rapidly, then rested it in the crook between his neck and shoulder, and hung on for dear life as he screwed her. As her climax grew closer, she had to resist the temptation to sink her teeth into his shoulder. He was a big, tough guy and she was sure he could take it, but she didn’t know him well enough for that yet. It might put him off his stride, and she definitely didn’t want that.


Alice Brown has just landed her dream job. Property manager at Davenport Manor, a British stately home. It’s only a nine-month contract to cover maternity leave, but it’s the boost up the career ladder she so desperately needs.

Unfortunately, things don’t get off to the best start, when Alice finds her boss, Jeremy Davenport, in a compromising position. Far from being embarrassed by what’s happened, Jeremy turns things around on Alice and makes her out to be the one in the wrong. So when he and his best friend and head of security, Ethan Hayes, then throw an ultimatum at her, she’s so stunned and confused that she goes along with their indecent proposal.

When the dust settles and Alice has time to think about things, though, she realises that perhaps it isn’t such a bad thing. There are worse things she could be doing to advance her career, after all.

More info, excerpt and buy links:

Add to Goodreads here:

Author Bio: 

Lucy Felthouse is a very busy woman! She writes erotica and erotic romance in a variety of subgenres and pairings, and has over 100 publications to her name, with many more in the pipeline. These include several editions of Best Bondage Erotica, Best Women's Erotica 2013 and Best Erotic Romance 2014. Another string to her bow is editing, and she has edited and co-edited a number of anthologies, and also edits for a small publishing house. She owns Erotica For All, and is book editor for Cliterati. Find out more at Join her on Facebook and Twitter, and subscribe to her newsletter at:


Thursday, January 30, 2014

Special Delivery (A Valentine's Short Story) by Ginny Baird ~ Review ~

When I start a Ginny Baird book I know I am in for a very enjoyable, sweet read. Special Delivery is certainly no exception to this. 

Amanda Holiday is expecting their first child any day while her husband is deployed. Amanda is ready though, her best friend has stepped up to the roll of birthing coach. She has taken her role seriously and checks on Amanda several times a day. I thought this was so sweet. She wants to make sure she is there and ready when Amanda and the new little one need her. Amanda has already went a few days over her due date, so the little one could choose to make an appearance at any moment. 

Luke, Amanda's husband, is in a sticky situation of his own. I don't want to tell you exactly what is happening to Luke but it sure does add some serious suspense to the story. 

When Amanda finally goes in labor she is in for a HUGE surprise. She gets the one thing she really wants as she is about to deliver her baby. Once again I don't want to give away the surprise. It is a good one though.

Ms. Baird has once again written a wonderfully sweet romantic story just in time for Valentine's Day. If you are looking for a sweet short story to sweeten your Valentine's Day I suggest you pick this one up.  If you are a fan of Ginny Baird I know you are going to love her latest masterpiece. If you have never read her work, grab Special Delivery, I think you will enjoy it. 

Special Delivery

Cupid’s Promise By Kimberly Quinton ~ Holiday Hearts Book 2 ~ Bridging the Gap Blog Tour ~ Interview ~ Giveaway~

Cupid’s Promise
Holiday Hearts Book 2

By Kimberly Quinton

A $25 gift card to Amazon
An ebook copy of Her Wish Before Christmas


Crystal: Today as part of the Bridging the Gap Blog Tour, I have the opportunity to interview Kimberly Quinton. Welcome Kimberly, I'm so happy to have you here today. Would you share a little bit about yourself with us today?

Kimberly: Thanks for having me today! I’ve been a stay at home mom for the last nine years. Sometime during the first couple years of diapers, play-dates and trying to figure out the parenting thing, I decided to really go for my dream of writing a book. I think it was the lack of sleep and the need for something that was just for me, even if I did keep it secret for years! I took some online classes and then finally got up enough courage to join a local RWA chapter. There, I met some amazing writers and received the support I needed to keep trying, submitting and get over rejections. And now, I can’t imagine doing anything else. I’m thrilled I didn’t give up—which crossed my mind a few times. 

Crystal: Where did you come up with the idea for your current release?

Kimberly: I love holiday stories and began working on a Christmas novella.  I gave my heroine a sister and two cousins and they kept talking to me and wanting a story of their own so my Christmas story grew into a series over different holidays. 

Crystal:  What are you currently working on?

Kimberly: I’m working on Holiday Hearts #3—Star Spangled Surprise. It’s Jacqui’s story (Lena’s sister) And I’m having so much fun making life difficult for her and her true love. 

Crystal: Do you have any special routine that you follow when you are writing? 

Kimberly: My goal is to work on my current work-in-progress every day. Some days I spend more time on it than others. Now that I have to add promotion, blogging etc… my writing new words time is not what it used to be. I am lucky that now that my youngest is in kindergarten, I can write full-time while the kiddos are at school. No waking up super early or staying up super late unless my muse is really kicking me or I have edits to get through on a deadline. I try not to get sucked into social media too often—but resisting twitter and Facebook is HARD! 

Crystal: Did you have to do a lot of research for this book or any other? If so do you have a fascinating fact that you have learned you would like to share with us?

Kimberly: My research was visiting family in Boston. The best kind of research—hands on. 

Crystal:  Who are some of your favorite authors that you like to read?

Kimberly: I read a lot of genres of romance (from sweet to erotic) and mystery/thrillers. I’ve been reading Jill Shalvis, Kristan Higgins, Heather Graham, Heather Long, Virginia Nelson, and several Decadent authors new to me. I also have to read anything Stephen King, Preston and Child, F. Paul Wilson, and Dean Koontz puts out! I have a loaded kindle and packed book shelves.  

Crystal:  Is there any genre you haven't written that you would like to try?

Kimberly: Next month, my superhero romance Hero Worship, releases from Decadent. And next, I’m working on a twisted fairytale romance for Decadent and the 4th Holiday Hearts. After that, I have two contemporary romance novels that might get my attention but….I have first drafts of a Romantic suspense, a dark paranormal romance, a contemporary category romance and a synopsis for a historical romance, a mystery/thriller and an urban fantasy. Yep—I have enough ideas to keep me writing for years. 

Crystal:  Do you have a favorite scene you would like to share with us?

Kimberly: My favorite scene in Cupid’s Promise is near the end, so I don’t want to share it all. I giggled through writing it because Lena is teasing Marcus during a couple’s therapy workshop and I think it has the most sexual tension of the whole story. 

Here’s a peek:
Excerpt from Cupid’s Promise-
“Go on, Ms. Ridgeway. Tell your partner what you like about him. Or what you love, desire, find thrilling. Search for the words deep inside and let them out.”
Her face burned at the implications. Why wasn’t Marcus telling him they weren’t partners? Why wasn’t she? Marcus’s answering grin shouted cockiness. But she didn’t care. She did desire him. What the hell? She had kissed him and was pretty sure she wanted that to happen again. You wanted to take charge of your fate. Here’s a chance. Do something crazy.
“I love the feel of your lips on mine.”
His eyes widened and the desire she’d seen earlier flared to life. His hands tightened on hers. Oh yes. She could get into this.


Shot through the heart...

Cupid’s Promise (A sweet contemporary Holiday romance with a touch of paranormal) 

Cupid's Secret promises to set Laurel Cove on its ear with a sexy new boutique that answers what a woman desires. When the owner ends up in the hospital it's up to Lena Ridgeway to make sure this heart-stopping opening goes off without a hitch, but she finds her every idea challenged by a no-nonsense businessman.
Capitalizing on a feeling...
Marcus Blackwell is a bottom-line kind of guy and he knows that sex and hearts sell. When he arrives to find his latest venture in chaos, his partner injured, and a model- turned-manager in charge, he rolls up his sleeves and dives in. If only he could keep his mind-and hands - off the sultry model with her whimsical faith in a fake holiday.
Can't fight this fortune...
Lena can't help teasing the straight-laced, business-only boss who keeps sneaking into her dreams. One passionate kiss has her believing he may be the one she's waited for all her life, but she'll need every arrow in Cupid's arsenal to prove she is his true Valentine....

Buy links:






“You’re firing me because I didn’t sell enough chocolate?” Lena had never been fired before. She shouldn’t be so pissed. It wasn’t like she had wanted to be a clerk in the first place.
“No. I’m letting you know your obligation to your friend is fulfilled. We have a manager who can take over—one who’s interested in the bottom line and ready to do what it takes to make this store a success—therefore, you no longer need to inconvenience yourself with filling in.” If he could have been more condescending, she wasn’t sure how.
“But who will coordinate the seminars and special guests we have coming in next week? Julie can’t run the store and do that, too.” Why was she arguing? If the part owner said he didn’t need her, then he didn’t need her. She could get to her planned reunion with James.
“I’ll be coordinating the week of activities and specials. Like I said, everything is under control and you are free to go.” He began the closing routine as if there was no need for further discussion. She was, for the first time she could remember, speechless.
Lena paced through the shop to the florist counter where her purse was secured in a cabinet. Pulling the over-sized boho bag out, she bit her tongue before saying anything else. She had known her time there was temporary while they found other staff, but she had enjoyed the work and done well, despite what Marcus thought. Maybe she should take his dismissal as a sign to move on.
Turning, she almost swallowed her sore tongue. Holy heck. Boss from hell had loosened his tie and unbuttoned his collar. Suddenly Mr. Tight Ass looked more bedroom than boardroom. He ran a hand over his face, pinched the bridge of his nose for a breath, then smoothed through his just-longer-than-short locks. The natural wave kept the tousled-yet-put-together style with ease. Transfixed, she couldn’t look away as his long fingers deftly and purposefully unbuttoned one sleeve and then the other before rolling them up to reveal the sun-kissed color of his hands also extended up strong forearms. Her lips closed around the soft pant of her breath. Her thoughts really needed to start flowing in a different direction.
His gaze caught hers and heat singed her cheeks at his cocky half-grin. “You don’t need to help close up. I can manage.”
Clearing her throat, she wiped at the handprint her heated skin had left on the glass counter. “Sure thing.” I need to get out of here before I do something stupid.
Lena wrestled one arm into her coat. Her palms itched to either smack him or caress him to see what he would do. Neither choice was in her best interest. He moved behind her to hold up her coat. His hand brushed her shoulder, turning her toward him. The small touch sent a thrill straight to her core. Peeking up at him, she searched for an answering attraction in the depths of his warm autumn flecked-green eyes but he moved away quickly. “Night, then. Good luck.” And once again, she’d been dismissed.
Stupid candy. From this night on, she never wanted to see chocolate again. Okay, maybe not until after Valentine’s.

About the Author:

Whether she’s writing contemporary or paranormal romance, Kimberly Quinton is a romantic at heart who strives to tell stories about the power of true love.

Since a teen, she’s loved romances and believes we can all live our happily-ever-after. Always a people watcher, it wasn’t until Kimberly shucked her Accounting major for Anthropology that her interest in people and cultures was nurtured. Kimberly has combined her natural curiosity (nosiness) with her love of romance for the sake of bringing the movies in her head to life on the page.

A wife and mother of two, Kimberly spends her days chasing chores, wrangling active kids, and writing. She also enjoys traveling, cooking, great wine and sharing a laugh with friends and family.

You can usually find her on Facebook or Twitter. Stop by for a chat.

Contact Details:





Amazon Author Page:

Goodreads page:


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The Outcast Highlander by R.L. Syme ~ The Highland Renegades ~ Bridging the Gap Blog Tour ~Guest Post ~

The Outcast Highlander
The Highland Renegades
by R.L. Syme

Giveaway: 2 great prizes !! Grand Prize: R.L. is giving away a Kindle Paperwhite. As a secondary prize, she would like to give away a set of Scottish Historical romances from some of her favorite authors. Please use the Rafflecopter below to enter. 


The Hardest Scene

When rewriting this book, my editor felt like I needed to add a scene right around the climax of the book where Broccin ends up in Berwick. I won’t give away too much, because there are spoilers, but let’s just say he doesn’t plan to be there, and he doesn’t really leave. Not for awhile.

Because this scene was written so long after the book had been finished, I was really afraid that it would feel different from the rest of the book. So I worked pretty hard, going back and reading Broc’s cadence and looking at his emotional state up until then (and after). The initial storyline had called for Broc to participate in the battle of Stirling Bridge during this scene, instead of to be at Berwick. But the rewrite made Stirling Bridge timeline-impossible. 

It was a constant struggle, as I wrote this chapter, to make sure that I was being fair to where Broc was at that time, emotionally, and to what he was expecting from the scene. Most of the time, when I’m writing a scene, I’m not 100% sure what’s going to happen after, but in this case, I had to fill a hole. I found it very rewarding to go back through and read the chapters on either side and feel like I’d done him justice. Sure, there’s a time jump, but that was intentional. There are some important things that happen to that group of people in Berwick, but Broc is not the POV character for those scenes, so I wanted to wait and write them from the POV character.

Does that mean that you have to read the second book to really understand what happened during those months in Berwick? Yes. I know, I know, I’m a horrible person. I’ll live with that. 


He's lost his family, his title, and his honor, but he can't lose her...

Kensey MacLeod returns home after a failed marriage alliance in France to find her world in turmoil: her best friend married to an English sympathizer, her mother at death's door, and her father imprisoned and thought dead. As an English lord descends to claim her father's lands, Kensey escapes north with her mother and brother, and runs straight into the arms of the outcast Highlander.

Driven from home and family by a crazed father, Broccin Sinclair refuses to stand aside while the English invade his beloved Scotland. But who should he champion? The freedom fighter who saved his life, the family who has forgotten him, or the woman who captured his childhood heart?

Scottish Historical Medieval
Sweet Romance
254 pages, self-published

Buy Links:

Amazon -

B&N -


“If it wouldn’t be too much trouble, may I ask why your horse grazes yonder when there are men who chase you?”
“Oh, stop, you impertinent fool.” Kensey shook his hand away and searched the area around her for something. “I was knocked off my horse.”
“What are you looking for?”
She sighed. “I would like to get up and resume my travels.”
So she looked for something to pull herself up with, yet ignored his help. How like her. He must be beneath her notice. Or her care.
“Let me help you.” He stood and offered both hands. She considered him for a moment and finally touched him again. He couldn’t deny a tiny thrill at having won the fight, or at having her hands in his. But her frustration continued.
She furrowed her brow and released his hands. First one step, then another. But on the third step, she began to sway and Broc had to follow quickly to catch her.
“You’re in no state to be walking.” He swept her into his arms, despite her protest, and stilled her grasping hands by hooking both of her wrists together in one grip. “Nor riding.”
He deposited her atop his horse and jumped up before she could make any more fuss. The Ross men obviously hadn’t followed them, but they would have to proceed carefully from here, knowing they may come back upon them at any time.
Broc urged his horse forward into a slow cantor, searching for the least dense path forward. In his lap, Kensey pulled on the dirty folds of her dress, dislodging bits of the forest floor that still clung to the delicate fabric.
“What are you doing here?” she demanded.
“Let’s get you out of here first, lass.” He glanced back into the thick canopy of stillness for a moment. “Ross’s men may be quick on our heels.”
Sitting against him as she was now, she felt tiny and vulnerable. His cloak had opened as he’d climbed onto Gaidel’s back and she was now sitting in the midst of it, against his nearly bare chest. She seemed to suck up all the warmth in his body as she curled against him. Her eyelashes blinked furiously, as though she tried to keep herself awake when sleep called. He reached down and wrapped the warmth of the cloak around her.
“You can sleep. It appears we’ve lost our pursuers and it will be slow progress back to the trail, if we even dare to follow it.”
“I’m not tired.” She yawned and her weight pressed even more against him. She would no doubt be asleep soon. His body tensed against the desire that tried to consume him. This was his brother’s intended.
He was merely delivering her back to him.
Not enjoying having her in his arms. Not at all.

Author bio:

R.L. Syme works at a youth theatre, teaching kids performing arts and musical performance classes/camps when she's not writing. Otherwise, she's putting her Seminary degree to good use writing romance novels. Let not all those systematic theology classes go to waste...



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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Untangle My Heart by Maria K. Alexander ~ Goddess Fish Super Book Blast ~ Giveaway ~

Untangle My Heart
by Maria K. Alexander

UNTANGLE MY HEART is FREE on AMAZON during this tour.... The purchase link is at the bottom, go grab your copy now!!!!!

Maria will award a $25 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour. Don't forget to enter with the Rafflecopter below. Also visit the other stops on the tour. You may find those locations here.....


When her marriage ended in tragedy, Kate DiFrancesco rebuilt her life, but has never gotten over the pain of what she lost. Seeking the help of an ex-lover ignites feelings she’s promised never to have again. She’ll need to untangle herself from dangers in her past in order to break the hard shell around her heart. 

Edward Weston has a lot to prove, both to his stuffy upper-crust British family, and to  himself. Working alongside Kate, a woman he had a casual relationship with, stirs unexpected feelings. Helping her family makes him realize what he's missing. For the first time, he wants more than a one-night stand. 

When Kate is threatened, Edward must overcome feeling unworthy to protect the woman he loves and fight for the family he never thought he’d have.



“Good morning,” he said. “Ready to go?”

“I’m all set.” She swung her laptop bag over one shoulder and grabbed the handle of her suitcase with her opposite hand.

“I’ll take that,” Edward said, reaching for the suitcase.

“I have it,” she snapped and held firmly onto the handle. His old-fashioned ways sometimes annoyed her and today was one of those days. Why was he always trying to be nice to her? It would be easier to maintain her distance if he wasn’t so damned considerate. Damned British manners. “I don’t need your help.”

He raised an eyebrow at her outburst but let go of his hold on the suitcase. “Fine. I see someone didn’t get her coffee this morning.”

“Wrong. I had two cups.” And a restless night of sleep with alternating dreams of Edward and Lucas. Frustrated from tossing and turning all night, she’d gotten up at four and started baking.

“I made biscotti if you’d like some.” She handed him a white bakery bag, hoping her offering of food would compensate for her irritable mood.

He opened the bag and pulled one out. “Are they safe to eat or did you use arsenic instead of sugar?”

Rather than dignify him with an answer, she leaned forward and took a bite. It was still warm and the chocolate chips melted in her mouth. Edward’s gaze studied her mouth as she chewed and for a minute Kate thought he may take a nibble out of her.

“Perfectly safe. I swear,” she said after swallowing.

He popped the other half in his mouth. “Not bad.”

“Not bad, my ass,” Kate said.

“That’s pretty fine, too.”


AUTHOR Bio and Links:

A romantic at heart, Maria K. Alexander spent hours as a young girl getting lost in and wishing to be one of the heroines in the stories she read. Books gave her the ability to go to another world where she loved meeting new characters, learning about their problems, and watching them fall in love.

Maria blogs and shares her writing journey with her critique partners at:

When not writing, Maria loves to read, bake, downhill ski, visit the beach, and watch romantic comedies. Maria lives in New Jersey with her husband and children, and writes in her “spare” time between juggling a full-time job and her kids’ busy schedules.

 You can keep in touch with her at:

Web Links


The Violet Femmes Blog:




Amazon Buy Link:


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Ruby By Ashlynn Monroe ~ Smexy Fab Four blog tour ~

By Ashlynn Monroe 


Jewel's father, the smuggler king, decides to take his honorary title a step too far when he offers her in trade for an army and a secure port to do his illegal business. She finds herself on the run from her father, and the evil mutant prince who wants to impregnate her with his heir.

Jewel faces a brutal world alone as she attempts her escape. With a fortune in bounty on her head, she soon discovers staying free isn't as easy as she'd hoped it would be, but her cunning and fighting skill help her evade capture time and again.

Only one bounty hunter, Rion, is man enough to capture her, but she's also the true mate to his inner wolf. When he makes love with her, the act of taking her virginity bonds him to this woman of worth. Now, keeping his mate alive and safe make Rion and his friends wanted men.

Rion can only think of one way to insure his woman remain safe, she needs a guardian. Rion asks his mentor, Makis, and the other shifter agrees to bond with the woman. Can Jewel find love and happiness with both men?


Sol gripped the shuttle’s comm and turned it off. They didn’t want any ships to hail them. He set the coordinates in the computer to take them to the planet Atala. “I wish we were closer. Every second counts, and I want to earn this bounty and get back home. Linus Lilymann—huh, he’s such a crook. You know we’re probably looking for stolen, stolen property,” Sol complained. 

“I know, but Lilymann has plenty of money. This is important to him if he’s willing to contract professional bounty hunters. He doesn’t get the goods until we get paid.” 

“Fair enough. You were the one to get the details. What exactly are we hunting?” Sol asked. His eyebrow rose. 

“His ruby was stolen,” Isser replied. 

“His ruby? As in singular? One gem?” 

“That’s what he said. He said it’s the ruby he’s always wanted, and he needs it back before the full moon. A woman took it. We’re not supposed to take the gem from her. He wants us to bring the woman instead. He said she has it, without a doubt, and just to bring her back to him, alive, and that’s it. He gave me this bit of fabric. It bears her scent. She smells a bit strange, but I can’t put my finger on it.” 

Sol took the scrap of pale material and pressed it to his nose. He inhaled sharply. 

“You’re right. This scent isn’t quite human. Even the most mutated human wouldn’t smell like this. It’s not like anything I’ve encountered before. It’s almost wolf, but different. Strange.” He sighed and shrugged as he handed the clue back to Isser. “I hate hunting women, even thieves. Makis would never have accepted this job...” Sol paused and rubbed his tired eyes. “If Jewel and her pups die, the pack will never be home again. I doubt Rion and Makis would even survive. Rion might because he has Boon to think about, but Makis wouldn’t have anything if they all three die. If we weren’t on the run, we could take out credit. They’d already have had the benefit of a doctor. Even free from the clan, we are still suffering. I pray to the gods someday we’ll have true safety to live in the old way. Jewel is the glue holding us together. Everything turns to shit when she dies.” 

“Don’ Just don’t! Makis is our leader. He’d never leave us by choice.” Isser sounded younger than his years and even a little frightened. The way he said leader could’ve easily been substituted for father. 

“You feel it, the way it is for the three of them. Don’t tell me you haven’t woken to a wave of passion in the middle of the night. Occasionally, I’d experience the strong impression of the possessiveness and awe those two have for her. That’s the dream, to love like nothing else matters. It’s why we risked everything to leave the clan. I doubt I’ll ever have what they have, but it’s beautiful. I wouldn’t want to live if I lost a mate and that kind of perfect, forever love.” 

Sol heard the clatter of Isser’s seat belt releasing. He turned and noticed his brother’s enraged scowl as the man crouched down in the single pilot compartment next to him. “We can’t think like she’s going to die. We do the job, and we get them what they need. We make it better, got it?” 

Sol nodded, but the horror echoing from Isser’s subconscious hit him in waves of agony. They’d all lost family and community once. The idea of losing what they had slammed into his heart with agonizing force. 

“At least we won’t have to go through any wormholes. Sit back and relax, Bro. We’re on our way,” Isser muttered. He gave his brother a quick look before he punched the accelerator on the old ship. The stars stretched out into long lines around them as they sped through space in the direction of planet Atala. The money they needed to take care of their pack waited for them. 

* * * * 

Ruby ached all over. Sleeping on the cold ground wasn’t what she was accustomed to doing. Her life of learning and prayer hadn’t prepared her for being on the run. Since her escape, she’d managed to avoid the men searching for her by staying in the dark woodland. New men, more skilled trackers, had joined her kidnappers. The idea of so many males hunting her was terrifying. She suffered, so ill, her whole body burning, as if it were on fire. The primal wilderness wasn’t helping her hold on to her civilized humanity. The tiger wanted freedom. Ruby missed her warm, safe bed back at the house of worship. Her pussy throbbed, and she glanced up at the sky superstitiously. She’d been warned about the urges. She wanted meat, rare—raw, delicious meat. The desire struck her as odd since she’d grown up on a vegetarian diet. 

Her mind wandered to the many ceremonies where the male devotees worshipped in the temple. Ruby remembered singing the hymns with passion as she observed the women riding the hard cocks of their silent lovers. Little arrows of excitement darted through her core as she imagined hairless, purified male bodies naked and chained. They lay in a state of helpless arousal during the full moon. 

Her fingers brushed her mound through her tattered robes. She moaned. Pleasuring herself before her consecration was a terrible sin against the goddess, so she stopped and ignored the ache for release. If she didn’t get back to her planet, and the house of worship, she’d die. She’d escaped before they could deliver her, but somewhere on this world lurked the man who’d paid for her kidnapping. She’d heard the monsters talking. They knew her time was running out. Luckily, her change had given her the strength to escape, but now that power had left her. This world didn’t have the red burning moon of her home, but the lack of astronomical markers wasn’t stopping her body from the tormenting effects of her first heat. 

Panting, she lay in the cool grass, trying to focus on the sensation of the cold dew instead of how much she craved the end of her virginity. If she were home, she’d be lying naked, awaiting the male worshippers who would unleash the cat inside her. Until today, she’d dreaded the experience, but now she needed sex. 

A wave of dizziness hit her. Light-headed, Ruby sat up. The early-dawn light burned strangely bright. She lifted her hand to shield her eyes, and the action caused her to notice her nails. Gasping, she pulled her hand closer to her face. Her eyes widened, and her lip trembled. She squeezed her mouth tightly shut to stop the tremble. Terror gripped her. The bitter taste of bile rose up in her throat. The nasty flavor caused her to suck in a deep breath as she fought to maintain her composure. Her nails had grown into sharp claws, and each of her knuckles had a frightening patch of hair jutting out from her skin. 

She wanted to kill prey and eat it. A consecrated youth learned the virtue of a sweet and serene attitude. Now she desired violence as her inner agitation escalated. Her stomach rolled. Hunger had always been a usual part of her daily routine. Showing restraint at all times, included meals, was part of her ritualistic worship practices, but she’d never experienced such a gripping demand for sustenance. Agony curled her into a ball. She took deep breaths through her nose and exhaled deeply out of her mouth. When the torment subsided, Ruby stretched. Sitting in the dirt wasn’t going to fill her belly. A strange urge to hunt made her restless. 

She didn’t have the slightest idea about how to stalk prey, and yet her tiger wanted to do it. The beast had always been deep inside her, but this was the first time her inner animal was strong enough to control her. She didn’t like it. The sensation of losing control shook her with terrifying ferocity. Every moment she became more feline than human. Nothing made sense this morning. Her mind filled with images of animals running, but instead of thinking of them as creatures, she thought of them as delicious food. Her breath caught. She battled the impulse to run off into the wilderness and hunt. This foreign woodland taunted her with its majesty. Lost and alone, she wasn’t sure where to go. What remained of her rational thought reminded her she needed to find a way back to her sanctuary. The old mother would know what to do. The other tiger priestesses would help her through this transition. 

A noise caused her to sit up. At least two light-footed creatures were running. Instinct changed the way her senses brought information to her brain. Everything hit her mind so much more richly and yet in a truly primal way that left her feeling off-kilter. She tried to stand, but the world spun, and she landed hard on her ass. Ruby moaned, closing her eyes. Cramps filled her stomach. This pain clawed her much worse than her monthly cycle, this fire burned through her—killing her. She closed her eyes and sucked in a deep breath. 

“Who are you?” The gruff male voice terrified her. Ruby’s eyes opened quickly. She lay too weak to flee. She must have fallen unconscious for a few moments. Her body wouldn’t respond, as it stayed worthless for moving or fighting. This affliction had taken a great toll. Terror grew exponentially as her blurry vision sharpened, and she realized just how large and imposing the male’s body truly appeared. She could smell him. He wasn’t human. 

“I am Ruby, devotee of the cat goddess,” she managed to respond. This man wasn’t one of her attackers. They’d been human. This male was like her. Shifter. His warm amber eyes weren’t cruel. His hair was long, black. He wore it tied back in a ponytail. He was handsome. She didn’t have much experience with men, but this one was so unmistakably perfect she was able to register his masculine beauty even in her condition. 

“Shit! Damn it, Lilymann is fucking with us. This is the girl,” said the male who’d questioned her. “Do you smell her? I think we’ve been played.” Weakness lingered, and she couldn’t open her eyes, but he wasn’t talking to her. 

“You’re right. The scent is different now, but it’s definitely her. She’s—oh gods, no, that spiciness—she’s a tigress,” replied another man. “That’s what smelled off about her scent. She’s never shifted. That’s why we couldn’t tell. Tigers don’t shift until they go into heat. Damn it!” 

She managed to open her heavy eyelids. The second man was almost as beautiful as the first man was. His hair was much lighter, and she marveled at the various shades of blond, light brown, and red that glinted in the sunlight. This stranger had hair any woman would envy, but there was nothing feminine about the sculpted masculinity of his face. He was incredible. He was also...different. She’d seen men who wanted to serve, but these men looked ready to dominate. They frightened her, but she also found them fascinating. He glanced at her, and they made eye contact. His eyes were such a deep green they reminded her of the forest. The image of a wolf leaping over a fallen log filled her brain, and she drew in a deep breath. She sighed before the exhaustion became too much, and her eyes closed again of their own accord. Ruby laid her head down in the dirt as she gave up the struggle. The weakness was intolerable, but she knew no remedy except returning home to the goddess. 

“We aren’t looking for a gem. She’s the ruby. Oh gods, how were we so stupid as to believe this hunt would be as simple of a matter as stolen property?” 

She had no idea what property he referred to, and she didn’t care. She hadn’t taken anything from anyone. Ruby drew in another deep breath, and her brain registered what was bothering her. These men were shifters—wolves. Why wolves would agree to hunt another shifter was a mystery to her. Her curiosity didn’t last long. Pain raced through her abdomen, tearing a cry from her lips. She hurt so badly she curled into a fetal position. She didn’t care what happened to her anymore, because she was dying. No one could hurt this bad and survive. She agonized over the emptiness of life cut too short and unfinished days. She wished for another day—an hour even—just to enjoy existence. As she lost consciousness, the darkness swept away her pain, and she sighed with relief. 

Copyright © Ashlynn Monroe