Thursday, January 30, 2014

Non-mainstream movies that deserve some love

You know that movie that never made it to the mainstream consciousness...yet you can't get enough of? Yeah, so do we.

So next date night, grab your popcorn and ditch the theater to give some love to these non-mainstream wonders.

Skylar: America's Sweethearts. It's got Billy Crystal, Hank Azaria, John Cusack, Julia Roberts and Catherine Zeta-Jones. It's romantic, it's funny, and it pokes fun at the movie industry. What more could you want?

Kate: No Name on the Bullet. Great Audie Murphy Western noir film. He's totally cold in it.

Kelly: Wayne's World, Phantom of the Paradise, Rocky Horror Picture Show (you can see I have to go way back for these)

Meg: Songwriter. From the 90s. The ultimate Texas movie (rumor was it was killed by studio execs b/c the commentary on the business was too pointed).

PG: The Big Chill, The Butcher'sWife, The Big Picture, Truly Madly Deeply, About Time, Chances Are

Erin: I. It's quirky, funny, weird. Definitely weird. I can't even really say why I like it. I watched it because my daughter insisted. She's always right about this stuff.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Monthly Round Up for January 2014

Well, the first month of 2014 is behind us and the year is off to a great start. Let's start with some new releases...

The Promise Harbor Wedding series is being made available in print. Book 1, Kelly Jamieson's Jilted, was
released on January 7th.

"Jamieson does it again with a hot romance that burns up the pages and the sheets. Josh and Devon have a shared past, unresolved issues and a love that is being fanned back to life. Their chemistry is combustible and he's a firefighter so he knows all about heat! Sit back and relax as you get to meet the people of Promise Harbor. You'll be glad you did!" Romance Junkies

 “There is just something special about second chances as both Devon and Josh both soon realize and along the way they discover so much more about each other... Kelly Jamieson...showed us again that she is a gifted storyteller. Her characters are flawed but evolving, the story moves at a decent pace without feeling rushed, solutions are believable, and best of all we know there's more to come in Promise Harbor!” Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews

Book 2, Bolted by Meg Benjamin, releases on February 4th and is
available now for pre-order.

"I found this story to be an absolutely wonderful companion piece to Jilted, yet it could easily be read as a standalone book. It was easy to become immersed in the craziness that exists in Bolted and I dare you not to fall in love with these characters and feel the need to make reservations at Casa Dubrovnik!" Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews 

"I loved this story and how Greta discovered who she was and what she wanted to with the rest of her life. The confidence she gains and the hot sex she has with Hank.

There are also some great secondary characters in this book who livened up the story and had me laughing out loud. We also get to see what's going on with Josh and Greta's mom. I'm curious to see how this story line pans out.

Over all this is a great read and I can't wait for the next book." The book Reading Gals

Happy Medium, the third book in Meg Benjamin's Ramos family trilogy, was released a week ago.

 Love is good for the soul… unless it’s one that you’re trying to exorcise.

Ray Ramos has a problem–the King William District mansion he and his business partner purchased for a fast renovation needs more work than expected. Ray could use a quick infusion of cash. Enter Emma Shea, assistant to Gabrielle DeVere, the star of American Medium. Gabrielle is looking for San Antonio houses to use for her televised séances, and Ray’s fixer upper seems to fit.

When Gabrielle does a sample séance, Ray and Emma become the target of a touchy ghost with no respect for boundaries. After Ray learns his family has a special affinity for ghosts, the two decide to investigate the haunted house. It doesn’t hurt that Emma is immediately attracted to the laconic Ray or that Ray is intrigued by the buttoned-down beauty who seems determined to hide her considerable assets behind sober business suits. But can the two of them fight off a vengeful succubus bound to the house while getting a lot closer than either of them planned?
Available at: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | All Romance eBooks

You Really Got Me, Kelly Jamieson's new BDSM story released yesterday.

There will be pain…but only if she asks nicely.

Kendall Vioget fell hard for Police Chief Jason Holloway, until the best sex of her life became something more, something she wasn’t ready for. Afraid of what he asked of her, afraid of her own desires, she walked away.

Now her brother’s fiancée has gone missing a week before the wedding, bringing Jason back into her life. She needs his help, but her body is losing the battle to resist the hunger to satisfy the dark cravings he can set free. 

Jason understands what she needs, and when her increasing submission banishes the self-doubts he’s been carrying around, he knows a perfect match like this comes along only once in a lifetime. Until the missing persons case becomes a murder investigation, and suspicion falls on her brother.

Kendall will do anything to protect the only family she has left, and Jason will do anything to make sure a killer is put behind bars. If he doesn’t handle this case right, the most precious gift she could have given him—her trust—will be destroyed. Permanently.

Product Warnings
This book contains bondage, spanking, a sexy police chief determined to catch a killer, a woman determined to protect her family, and wine…lots of wine. 
Available at:  Samhain | Amazon | Barnes & Noble 


The print version of Now Comes the Night (book 3 in PG Forte's Children of Night series) releases on February 4th.  

"PG Forte has written a compelling and captivating story, with an intriguing blend of present, recent past and some snippets of life when Conrad and Damian were first together. I love the little glimpses of what drives each character, and how where they have been has made them who they are. This series is addictive, like watching a favorite soap opera with real bloodsuckers, wondering what secrets will be revealed in the next episode." Long and Short Reviews

 "Damian and Conrad truly have an original and unconventional love story that will entertain as well as romance you. Their fledgling parenting attempts are charming and totally endearing, and their occasionally tumultuous love affair will keep readers wondering what is around each new corner." RT Book Reviews

Available for pre-order: Amazon | Barnes and Noble

On February 18th, the third book in Skylar Kade's Maison Chronicles series, Surrender to Fire, will be released. 

One scorching-hot lesson could leave her begging for more.

Reeling from the double whammy of her Dom’s abandonment, and accusations of colluding with a plagiarizing author, all literary agent Camille Winter wants is some low-profile, drama-free quality time.

Just as she’s settling into a Maison Domine cabin with her to-be-read pile and a full slate of spa appointments, she finds herself sweet talked into playing topless assistant so some Dominant can run a BDSM educational demo.

Architect Damien Winter is on a relationship hiatus, so he focuses his dominant energies on teaching BDSM classes. A chance encounter in Maison’s parking lot with a woman who angrily insists she’s no sub—though every line of her body screams otherwise—turns shocking when she winds up as temporary replacement for his demonstration partner.

Damien is unprepared for the way her beautiful submission gets under his skin. And Camille never thought she’d fall, hard, for just the kind of man she’s sworn off. But when her ex’s vague threats turn serious, Damien fears he’s already lost the chance to claim her for his own. 

Product Warnings
This book contains a fiery woman burned one too many times and the Dom who entices her to submit to the heat between them. 

Available for pre-order at: Samhain | Amazon 

And on February 25th Going for Four ( book 4 in Erin Nicholas's Counting on Love series) releases:

It’s either true love…or the biggest mistake they’ve ever made.

Hot firefighter, Cody Madsen has stayed away from Olivia Dixon for almost two years—technically. Even though he talks to her every day and sees her every weekend. But there’s no kissing, touching, or telling her how he really feels. Because they’re just friends.  Anything more than that would mean crossing the line that Olivia’s older brother has firmly drawn between them.

Olivia wants what her three sisters have—true love. She could almost believe she’s found it with Cody, if it weren’t for the fact that he’s her brother’s best friend and her brother won’t have it. And he’s never steered her wrong before. Her head is telling her to trust her brother, but her heart won’t let go of Cody.

Her solution? A dating site where she and Cody can each find their “Perfect Pick” once and for all.

But when the site yields some unexpected results, their real feelings come front and center. And they have to decide if it’s worth the risk to cross the line from friendship to love after all.

Warning: Contains a starry-eyed romantic, a wannabe knight in shining armor, and chocolate chip cookies. A lot of chocolate chip cookies.


And finally, we have two new covers to reveal! 

First up is Reward of Three, the third and final book in Kelly Jamieson's Rule of Three trilogy. 

Read more about the series HERE

And then we have Up By Five, the fifth (and also final!) book in Erin Nicholas's Counting on Love series. 

Read more about this series HERE.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Guest Blogger Shelli Stevens - The Love/Hate Trope

So here it is. The popular, or unpopular, love/hate trope in romance novels. You know the one. Where the characters alternate between despising each other and wanting to hump like bunnies? It can just be so hot and so fun, both to write and to read.

I really tend to enjoy them. That is if I believe the conflict between the two is believable and not just some trite issue making them fight. What started my love for love/hate tropes? My guess is when I saw The Cutting Edge back in Middle School. That movie, I don’t care what reviews say, rocked my world. “There's only two things I do really well, sweetheart, and skating's the other one!” (You’ll get that line if you adored the movie like I did)

Anyway, I love it. I love that Damn, I hate you so much, but wanna jump your bones so hard right now chemistry between a hero and heroine in books. I don’t write it often, but when I do it’s a complete blast.

Which is why I’m excited for today’s release, Kilty Pleasure. It definitely plays with that blurred line of lust and hate. I’ve got a deputy sheriff hero and a kick butt nurse as a heroine. Leave a comment on your favorite love/hate movie or book and one winner will receive a copy of Kilty Pleasure!

Shelli :)

The line between lust and hate is often blurred…

The McLaughlins, Book 2

After being ditched at the altar over a year ago, Deputy Colin McLaughlin is fine with being single. Despite the fact that nearly every eligible female on the island wants him, he isn’t looking for love.

But something stirs his blood when Hailey starts showing up more on the island. And it’s not just the conviction that the apple doesn’t fall far from her troublemaking, drugged-out family tree. His frustration mounts that even after she ruined his twin brother’s life, the desire he’s felt for her since high school still simmers.

Hailey Alexander knows her past is littered with mistakes. She’s done her best to make amends and move on, but a certain Scottish-born deputy doesn’t seem in any hurry to forgive or forget.

More than just fighting the attraction that’s compromising their hearts, they face a new threat from Hailey’s past that may threaten her life.

Warning: Contains sexy Scottish men living in America. The occasional kilt. A hero deputy who can’t forgive or forget, and a nurse immune to bullshit. Angry kisses. Scalding sex. And a drugged-out stalker ex to keep these two on their toes

Available at Amazon and all e-book retailers!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Stuck in a reading rut

The one thing I miss about paper books is the satisfying thunk of throwing one against a wall. Though it didn't happen often, I'd occasionally come across a romance novel that I just couldn't bear to finish, or one that had such a dissatisfying ending that it had to sail across the room and smack against the far wall.

With e-books, there's little and less satisfaction with "remove from Kindle device." It's anticlimactic after the gut-wrenching letdown of not being able to finish a book that others are raving about (and that I've spent good money on).

But this happens from time to time. I get into a reading rut where I can't get through a single damned book. Sometimes, the cure is switching to non-fiction, but that doesn't have the same alluring escapism. Every now and then, picking up sci-fi or fantasy does the trick, but their writing conventions (in classic sci-fi or high fantasy) are so different from romance that, as a writer, it's hard for me to say "but...but you're headhopping!" or something to that effect.

Normally, this literary malaise fades after a couple weeks, but for someone who reads two or three books a week, it's a torturous time. I usually go back and finish some of my digital wallbangers, but my Kindle has started to accumulate piles of books that, with or without my reading rut, I can't bring myself to finish. Maybe I'm getting finicky in my old age (and anyone who has met me should be laughing right now).

When this happens to do you cope? What books do you turn to? Any recommendations for solid, engaging romance reading?

Friday, January 24, 2014

Friday Fight Club - Jeb vs Jason

Ladies and Gentlemen - Are you ready? I said, ARE YOU READY?!?

Welcome to another round of Friday Fight Club, where two of our heroes compete to win the title of ... uh ... winner of Friday Fight Club! :)

This month, the heroes of Kelly Jamieson's and Jenny Bernard's latest releases will spar on our Facebook page, answering questions that let you, the readers, know how they really feel about life, the universe, and everything. Not only that, you have a chance a chance to win one of these fabulous new books! Every comment on the Facebook posts from our heroes will qualify you for the prize drawing. So be sure to stop by and comment to win!

In one corner: JASON HOLLOWAY

Jason is the Las Colinas, California Chief of Police, dedicated to protecting people and enforcing the law, strong, responsible and dependable. But Chief Holloway has another side, a part of him he only reveals in the bedroom— sexually dominant, demanding and dirty. He’s questioned that side of himself, worried he might cross a line, and at one point vowed to go vanilla…until he meets Kendall Vioget. Something about her brings out every dominant, protective instinct in him, everything he’s been trying to repress. She’s the perfect submissive for him. Only she doesn’t trust him, and he doesn’t trust himself…

And in the other: JEB STONE

Captain Jeb Stone is one of the sexy, smokin' hot Bachelor Firemen of San Gabriel, California. As captain of the C shift, he's famous for his toughness, his fairness and his skill. Off the job, he's known for his devotion to his family and his intense sexual magnetism.

These two men in (and out) of uniform will be duking it out on our Facebook page all day long. Stop in to see how they answer the serious questions of our day - and don't forget, every comment is an opportunity to win one of these two books!

There will be pain…but only if she asks nicely.

Kendall Vioget fell hard for Police Chief Jason Holloway, until the best sex of her life became something more, something she wasn’t ready for. Afraid of what he asked of her, afraid of her own desires, she walked away.

Now her brother’s fiancée has gone missing a week before the wedding, bringing Jason back into her life. She needs his help, but her body is losing the battle to resist the hunger to satisfy the dark cravings he can set free.

Jason understands what she needs, and when her increasing submission banishes the self-doubts he’s been carrying around, he knows a perfect match like this comes along only once in a lifetime. Until the missing persons case becomes a murder investigation, and suspicion falls on her brother.

Kendall will do anything to protect the only family she has left, and Jason will do anything to make sure a killer is put behind bars. If he doesn’t handle this case right, the most precious gift she could have given him—her trust—will be destroyed. Permanently.

Product Warnings
This book contains bondage, spanking, a sexy police chief determined to catch a killer, a woman determined to protect her family, and wine…lots of wine. 


Fire Captain Jeb Stone and incredibly successful press secretary Nita Moreno have both been burned by love before. That’s why neither one is looking for more than a few steamy nights of passion. 

When circumstances find them stranded on an island together babysitting a cross-dressing senator and the very pregnant wife of San Gabriel’s most famous captain, they allow the sparks they feel to take center stage. But as their feelings grow, can they each allow the other past the barriers they’ve built to protect their hearts?

See you on Facebook for the competition! And may the best man win!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

9 Things...we do every day

Aside from eating, breathing, and personal hygiene, there are some things that are essential to our daily routines.

1. Meg: Play a set number of games of solitaire before writing.
2. Kelly: Read.
3. PG: I've recently started meditating again...we'll see how long that lasts.
4. Skylar: Wake up at 6am--yes, even on the weekends.

5. Erin: Listen to the radio.
6. Juniper: Meditate.
7. Kinsey: Reading my favorite blogs and checking my Twitter feed. Every day. I feel like I should be ashamed, but I'm not.
8. Sydney: Candy Crush Saga. I'm addicted. I admit it. :)
9. Kate: Charge my phone.

What is a necessary part of your day?

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Surviving Snow Day

Blizzard warning!

The red alert button stares up at you from the screen, taunting you. The forecasted snow fall warning doesn't bother you. Neither does the high winds that promise near zero visibility. Piles of the fluffy white stuff can drift halfway up your front door and it won't matter when there are two little words that scare you most of all:

Snow Day.

The kids are already tearing around the house like it's a full moon and they've just drop loaded ten pounds of sugar into their system. All their friends and teachers were talking about it at school that afternoon and the impending day off has turned your children from happy, chattering balls of laughter to maniacal hyenas who've just scented weakness. Yours.

They're putting on their pj's backwards and inside out (or some weird variation of it) to honor some snow day deity in hopes it will increase the odds of No School. It seems like overkill to you in light of the blizzard warning, but deep down you're hoping their efforts will backfire and the snow storm boring down on you will somehow change course.

You try to reconcile yourself to your fate. You won't be getting much work done.

Any other school morning you practically have to peel your kids out of bed as they grumble about sleeping in, but while you're thinking about turning off the alarm and staying tucked in bed a little longer, their Snow Day alarm has already been flipped and there is no snooze button.

Breakfast isn't so bad. They're talking a mile a minute but you stubbornly cling to the hope that it will be just like a Saturday. Maybe working with all the kids in the house won't be such a challenge. 


By lunch they've re-enacted every lightsaber  scene from Star Wars, had princess tea parties where you've wondered what's in the imaginary water, built three blanket forts, drained the battery on their Nintendo DS's and tablets and had their own Super Mario Bros adventure. You weren't overly fond of being cast as Bowser. 

They're quieter when it's time to eat again. You want to take that as a good sign, praying for a calmer afternoon, but you have a feeling they're just recharging their batteries.

Sometimes it sucks to be right. 

More Lego, Beyblade, Barbie and Nerf games commence. Movie time suddenly sounds better than a glass of wine but they'd sooner be tossed out in a blizzard. 

By mid-afternoon you've had all the "I am your father", "I love my dream house, Ken" and "Let it Rip" that you can stand. You've written exactly three words on your latest book: Snow. Day. Hell. 

You break up three arguments over Mine Craft and who has the coolest house, kiss a few booboos from unruly lightsabers, and discover that you're not even safe in the bathroom. You only feel a little guilty when you glance outside. You can barely see the houses across the street, but if you had a rope long enough to tether them together you'd contemplate sending them outside to play.

Supper hour rolls and it's still snowing outside but the house is finally quiet. A movie is on and the kids are played out. One of them may have even fallen asleep and all it took was a coloring competition, playdough wars, the Taj Mahal of blanket forts (if you don't say so yourself) and a dozen rounds of hide seek (you still can't believe you squeezed yourself into some of those places).

The house looks like a kid's bedroom on meth and somehow you're right in the middle of it. Someone has to tidy up, but you've just survived another Snow Day.

This calls for a glass of wine. :)

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Guest Blogger Jennifer Kacey - Making Time for What’s Important

I write books…I know it’s a shocker.

But I also work 50+ hrs a week at my *real* job, and I’m married, have a 10 yr old, sing in the church choir, do kinky stuff on some weekends (THANK GOD!!) oh yeah and then there’s the house and the animals, and uhh…sleep…I hear sleep exists…somewhere.

When people find out how much I have on my plate everyone wants to know where in the world I pull enough time out of my ass to write so much.

My answer is always the same. People make time for what’s important. Everyone does even if they don’t realize that’s exactly what they’re doing.

I don’t watch TV, don’t have a sports addiction of any kind and don’t drink or smoke.

I prioritize EVERYTHING and make very good use of my time. I almost always have multiple things happening at once, especially with maintaining the household stuff, laundry, grocery shopping, etc. And having a 10 year old is awesome because he’s amazing and helps me out a heck of a lot!

And writing to me is incredibly important. It keeps me sane, literally. I’ve got so much sexy stuff to say I don’t think I can ever die.

Writing is amazing and something I’m immensely thankful for. I can blah blah blah my naughty out on page after page of erotic yumminess and go to bed with a big ole smile on my face.

And I get to write holiday stories and spread Christmas cheer with two Doms and a flogger and nipple clamps and a candy cane…I know what I’m asking Santa for next year!!!

I love getting to share my own version of naughty with you, and hope you love the newest book in the Members Only Series. Skye, Jackson and Nick definitely know the right way to celebrate a holiday!!

Enjoy…I’m gonna go write!

Members Only, Book Three

Skye has spent her life being the perfect daughter for her prominent, wealthy parents. She says all the right things, wears all the right clothes…and lies through her teeth about the kind of sex she needs. The bland “gentlemen” she dates don’t know a thing about what gets her going—and when they find out, they run screaming. In her deepest, naughtiest dreams, she finds a man…or two…who knows just how to tie her up and tease her until she’s begging for more. But those guys don’t really exist, do they?

Jackson wants one thing for Christmas, and her name is Skye. He’s watched her from afar for ages, biding his time, waiting for his chance to give her the kind of pleasure she craves. And this Christmas he’s going to get his way. He’s enlisted his buddy Nick and the two of them are going to give Skye a holiday treat she’ll never forget.

Inside Scoop:This holiday threesome features bondage and spanking benches…and creates whole new uses for Christmas lights and candy canes.

A Romantica® BDSMerotic romance from Ellora’s Cave

Buy Links

Amazon –

B&N -

Ellora’s Cave -

Kobo -

ARe Cafe -

Members Only, Book One – Together in Cyn

Jennifer Kacey is a wife, mother, and business owner living with her family in Texas. She sings in the shower, plays piano in her dreams, and has to have a different color of nail polish every week. The best advice she’s ever been given? Find the real you and never settle for anything less.

Website -
Facebook –
Twitter -
Goodreads –
Pinterest -

Monday, January 20, 2014

Bringing the Scary

As someone who just wrote three ghost stories (the third, Happy Medium, is being released by Berkley InterMix tomorrow, January 21), I’ve spent a lot of time recently thinking about being scared—how to do it and why. I’ve always had a weakness for ghost stories, both fiction and nonfiction, but I’d never really stopped to think what it was about those stories that really got to me. Why some of them gave me nightmares and some of them didn’t do much of anything.

I should start out by saying that explicit horror doesn’t do much except make me cringe. Texas Chainsaw Massacre never really appealed to me, nor did Scream or Halloween. It wasn’t that they weren’t scary (they definitely were). But it wasn’t the kind of scary I found enjoyable. Stabbing teenagers who had the bad luck to be in the wrong place at the wrong time makes me sad rather than uneasy.

Contrast this with Silence Of the Lambs. Now you may remember SOL as being extremely violent, but in fact it isn’t. There’s one sequence that’s designed to demonstrate that Dr. Lecter really is just as dangerous as everyone said he was, but that’s it. With the exception of the ending, everything else works by innuendo. You feel that Clarice is constantly under threat, but that threat is never realized until she finally finds Buffalo Bill at the end of the movie. And it’s that constant unrealized threat that makes the movie feel so terrifying.

I think good ghost stories work with a similar dynamic. You’re always waiting for something scary to happen, but it never seems to come when you expect it. Moreover, written ghost stories can be considerably scarier than filmed ones because the action takes place in your head. There’s a moment in Shirley Jackson’s supremely terrifying Haunting of Hill House when two of the psychically sensitive guests are talking in their darkened bedroom. One of them remarks that the other’s hand, which she’s holding, is very cold tonight. Guest two replies that she isn’t holding her hand. And that’s the last sentence in the chapter, as I recall. Gotcha!

Lots of great ghost stories work just like that—did you really see something or didn’t you? What was that noise anyway? Did something just flit by that mirror? Even ghost stories that don’t take themselves entirely seriously can still give you the chills. I remember reading Jennifer Crusie’s ghost story Maybe This Time while I was using the treadmill in my basement. Yes, it was funny (hey, it’s Jennifer Crusie), but by the time I was halfway through the book, I was feeling very uneasy about being downstairs all by myself. You laugh, but it’s sort of nervous laughter.

So to some extent that’s what I tried to do in my Ramos Family Trilogy, Medium Well, Medium Rare, and Happy Medium. They’re not particularly violent (although there are a few deaths here and there—they’re ghost stories, after all), but, well, things happen. The heroes and heroines see and hear things that others don’t. They’re frightened frequently and threatened occasionally. But everything works out in the end.

Hey, they may be ghost stories, but they’re still romances!

Here’s the blurb for Happy Medium:

Love is good for the soul… unless it’s one that you’re trying to exorcise.

Ray Ramos has a problem–the King William District mansion he and his business partner purchased for a fast renovation needs more work than expected. Ray could use a quick infusion of cash. Enter Emma Shea, assistant to Gabrielle DeVere, the star of American Medium. Gabrielle is looking for San Antonio houses to use for her televised séances, and Ray’s fixer upper seems to fit.

When Gabrielle does a sample séance, Ray and Emma become the target of a touchy ghost with no respect for boundaries. After Ray learns his family has a special affinity for ghosts, the two decide to investigate the haunted house. It doesn’t hurt that Emma is immediately attracted to the laconic Ray or that Ray is intrigued by the buttoned-down beauty who seems determined to hide her considerable assets behind sober business suits. But can the two of them fight off a vengeful succubus bound to the house while getting a lot closer than either of them planned?

Amazon | Barnes and Noble

And here’s a bit of the scary:

“Join hands everyone,” Gabrielle intoned in her most resonant medium voice.

Ramos gave her a piercing look, then took hold of her hand, extending his other hand across the table to Emma.

Gabrielle’s fingers were faintly damp, but Ramos’s were dry and hard. His calluses rubbed against Emma’s palm. For a moment she felt something like a mild electric shock tingle through her fingers. She pulled her hand away, staring.

Ramos stared back, his eyes wide.

“Take his hand, Emma.” Gabrielle frowned. “We need to get on with this.”

Emma extended her hand again, touching her fingers cautiously against Ramos’s palm. Nothing. Maybe she’d imagined the whole thing. Probably she’d imagined the whole thing.

Gabrielle raised her head, gazing up into the dim shadows overhead. “Is there anyone here? We call on you to come forth.”

Across from Emma, Ramos rolled his eyes. He had that sour look again. Just hold on a little longer, and we’ll be out of your way.

“Come forth,” Gabrielle whispered.

Ramos looked at her, then shook his head slightly.

And the candles went out.

Emma’s head shot up, and she turned toward the fireplace. There hadn’t been any flickering, any feeling of a breeze. One moment the candles had been burning, and now they weren’t. She gaped at Ramos, who was gaping back at her, his forehead furrowing. Somewhere overhead a door slammed.

At the head of the table, Gabrielle seemed not to notice. “Spirit forces, we call to you,” she crooned.

Something touched the back of Emma’s neck, a quick brush, so light she wasn’t sure she’d felt it. Then it came again, more definite this time, fingertips along the edge of her shoulder. She whipped her head to the right, but she couldn’t see anything in the gathering darkness.

Ramos’s hand jerked against hers. She turned back to him, but he was watching Gabrielle.

No, not Gabrielle. Beyond Gabrielle, toward the fireplace. The mantle glowed dimly in the twilight, as if there were lights beneath it. Then, one by one, the votive candles thumped to the hearthstone in front of the fireplace, bouncing lightly. Another door slammed upstairs.

Friday, January 17, 2014

First BOOK Friday-- Sydney Somers

It's First BOOK Friday!  For the next few months, we're going to highlight the first book from each of the Nine Naughties.  Sometimes people find us further down our backlist, sometimes readers think they're picking up our first book when really it's number 3 or so, sometimes our first book was so long ago even we've forgotten!  (just kidding... it's true that you never forget your first!).  So we thought it would be fun to revisit the books that started it all for each of us!

This month we're featuring the first book from Sydney Somers,  Say You're Mine

A note from Sydney:

The idea for my first Samhain book (my first published one isn't currently available) Say You're Mine came to me in late 2005 when the idea of a family-run private investigations firm popped into my head. Of course, writing strictly paranormal romance at the time, that family also had to be magically-inclined so making them witches/warlocks seemed like a perfect fit. And so my Spellbound series was born. :) 

After a friend's recommendation, I submitted a proposal to Samhain a couple months before their doors even opened, and a few weeks later the book was done and the contract signed. In July 2006, I introduced the Calder family to readers and have had a great time revisiting that world and getting to know all the Calder siblings and cousins better. 


There are two things Violet Calder knows. Magic and that cops and witches don’t mix. Fantasizing about sexy detective Reece Prescott doesn’t help matters, especially when her own clumsiness lands her in the middle of his undercover assignment.

Forced to pretend the gorgeous Violet is his girlfriend is one more nail in his coffin as far as Reece is concerned. From day one the Calder family has been a pain in his backside, and that doesn’t look like it’s about to change. But keeping his mind on bringing down a drug dealer gets increasingly difficult with Violet so close.

Knowing she has to tread carefully to protect her family, Violet begins to fear that not even magic will save her from falling for the one man she shouldn’t.



“Evening, Ms. Calder.”

Violet tensed at the deep, unmistakable voice directly behind her. She slowly turned around, all too conscious of the thinning air in the room. “Good evening, Detective.”

Short, dark brown hair, a five o’clock shadow that suited him entirely too much, and bottomless brown eyes that sucked you right in when they weren’t slicing a person in two, all combined to make a package 
Leslie liked to refer to as “sex on a stick”. There was only one problem with him.

He was a serious pain in the ass.

“Your brother around?”

Violet crossed her arms. It helped to fill up the space between them. Detective Reece Prescott had a habit of standing much too close. She figured it was an intimidation tactic. Having grown up with two overbearing older brothers, not to mention her three cousins, few men intimidated her. Unfortunately, Reece seemed to be in the minority. “Which one?”


“Why do you need to speak with him? Or are you just planning on harassing him?”

Reece broke his usual stoic mask with a frown. “He hit me first.”

Biting the inside of her cheek, Violet shrugged. Why he always got his boxers in a bunch whenever she mentioned that, she’d never know. “Well, as much as I hate to disappoint you, Detective, he’s already gone for the night.”

He surveyed the lobby as though he didn’t believe her, and finally nodded. “Let him know I was looking for him.”


He continued to stare at her.

“Was there something else?”

Instead of turning away, he took a step closer. His gaze tunneled into hers, warm and slow. “You don’t like me much, do you Ms. Calder?”

“I don’t dislike you, Detective.”

For a moment she could have sworn his eyes paused on her mouth.

“It’s Reece.” Without another word, he strode away.

But that didn’t stop her heart from continuing to thump against her ribs. She stared after him, wondering if she would’ve had enough guts to ask him out for a beer if he wasn’t a cop and she wasn’t a witch.

Add to your library here!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Pick Your Pleasure: Valentine's Dates Edition

Valentine's Day decorations have been out since Christmas, but some of us are just getting around to thinking about the day. To celebrate, would you rather go out on a fancy date, or have a quiet evening at home?

Erin: fancy date! We never do that... we have lots of quiet, and not so quiet, nights at home!

PG Forte: Both are nice but seeing as it's a Friday night this year, I think I'd rather stay in. I hate crowds.

Meg: We're not big on Valentine's Day--staying in would work better for us.

Kelly: Hmmm...we rarely go out, but on the other hand Valentine's day feels a little fake to me so I'm gonna say quiet evening at home.

Kate: I vote for quiet evening. We can send the kids out for the night.

Juniper: With our luck, we'll be on a plane back to Alaska on Valentine's Day. We'll spend the night trying to keep each other warm.

Sydney: It'll be a night in for us but I doubt there will be anything quiet about it. LOL With 5 kids it can be a challenge to get a babysitter sometimes.

Skylar: We stay in. Here's how it usually goes:
Me: Hey, we should be less boring and go out! 
Him: *sigh* Alright. 
Me: (on February 15th) Woops, guess we missed it!

What's your vote?

How do you like to celebrate Valentine's Day? free polls 

Wednesday, January 15, 2014


I'm a makeup and hair product slut. Some women, at some point in their lives, settle on one foundation, one mascara, one shampoo, maybe one brand for everything, and remain true forevermore. My mom, for instance, has never used any makeup but Estee Lauder. One of my girlfriends uses only It's A Ten hair products.

Me, I love em and leave em. I can't be tied down to just one product or just one line. I've always believed that somewhere out there is the foundation, the mascara, the lipstick, the hair smoother that will change my life. This mindset has only gotten worse as I get older; my vanity increases with age. Fortunately I can afford more and better stuff at 50 than I could at 25.

Which is why the windowsill above my bathtub is crammed with tubes and bottles, my skincare products take up an entire shelf in my bathroom closet, and my makeup shelf looks like a miniature Sephora. (Oh, Sephora. I manage to stay off the website, but when I walk into one of the stores, I get a brick-and-mortar strain of One Click Disease.)

My habit used to be fairly inexpensive because I only used drugstore cosmetics. For foundation and powder, I still do--usually Cover Girl or Neutrogena, but occasionally Revlon too. I'm blessed to have inherited my mother's great complexion, so I don't need to spend big bucks on foundation or skin care. Besides, numerous studies have proven that lowly drugstore cosmetics contain the same ingredients as their betters.

The same is true of the glamor products--eyeshadow, mascara, lipstick, blush--in terms of ingredients. But there's a big difference in terms of colors and formats. Urban Decay, Smashbox, Too Faced, Benefit--the four lines I buy the most often--offer a much wider array of shades, and the colors are more vibrant. They also offer more formats and more products--big fat shadow/eyeliner pencils and skinnier ones, blushes in powder or cream form, color-coordinated palettes for the whole face, highlighters and bronzers and tints.

Just thinking about it makes me all tingly.

Anyway, I've recently fallen in love with some new products and I wanted to share them because when you find a new love, you want all your friends to share your joy. And who doesn't want great makeup recommendations? (Well, maybe my sister. Our sister-in-law, Vickie the Blunt, gave her Dior's Airflash spray foundation as a gift one year and now she's hooked. It costs $62.00. But an addict needs what an addict needs.)

My hair products take up half a shelf (those not in the shower, that is) but I threw a bunch of them out after discovering Josie Maran's Argan Oil. My hair is curly/frizzy; I color it and blow it straight so it can get dry. My sister told me to stop using hair smoothers and keratin sprays that contain alcohol. The argan oil products I bought to replace them make my hair greasy. The Josie Maran oil, though, is perfect -- maybe because it's in a bottle with an eye dropper, so it's easier to control the amount you get as compared to a spray or a lotion.

I've never been a big lipstick person. I prefer gloss because my lips are frequently chapped. (Age slowly desiccates your body--did you know that?)  But Too Faced's La Crème lipstick is creamy and moist. So is their lip tint, which is also phallic as hell when you extend it.

I love almost all of Urban Decay's stuff but my favorite is their eyeshadow--a rich, creamy powder. Their Naked palettes are the best eyeshadows I've ever worn for color and consistency. I also love the Naked Flush palette of bronzer and blush.

Finally, there's That Gal! from Benefit--it's a face brightener/primer/glowey thing. You can wear it with makeup or without. I almost never go barefaced anymore; at my most minimal, I wear a tinted  moisturizer like Smashbox's Camera Ready BB Cream with That Gal to give me a little color. (I'm tragically melanin deficient.)

Benefit, by the way, is the quirkiest makeup company out there. I love this movie which tells the story of the company's formation and rise from mail-order catalog to global brand. If it's good enough for Ralph the cross-dressing farmer...

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Guest Blogger Dana Lorraine - Book Binge

Happy New Year everyone and thanks to the Naughty Nine for letting me stop by to chat about my new release and the joys of bingeing!

I know, I know—January is all about moderation but where’s the fun in that? I say binge until your heart is content. And there is one thing I love too much of—books. Okay, really there are two but I’m not going to discuss my sex life on any blog even if it is the Nine Naughty Novelists. LOL! (Oh… and those peanut butter cookies with the Hershey Kisses on top, no way can I control myself when they’re being served up either.)

So I love to read. It’s what led me to my passion for writing. And more than anything I love to read a hot, grab your husband as soon as he gets home, romance series. And can I just say there is nothing better than discovering a new series after a handful of books are already out. No sooner have you finished the first book that you’re signing into your Amazon account to download the next. Here are a couple of my favorite book series that sent me scrambling to get my hands on the next book.

Tales of The Shareem by Allyson James. Your heart will be racing after reading this series about men genetically altered to provide pleasure for women. They come in three tempting levels—sensuality, fun and games, dark and dangerous. How’s a woman to choose?

Robin L. Rotham’s Overnight series. She writes the hottest, unapologetically ALPHA aliens that will frustrate you as much as they turn you on. Looking for mates, they’ll bend any woman to their will as well as some of the men. Start reading this ménage series now. Rotham’s newest in the series, Amorous Overnight, comes out at the end of February. I got an early sneak peek and read it twice in two days.

Karen Marie Moning’s Highlander series. It might not be erotic but that doesn’t mean the sexual chemistry between the characters isn’t hot enough to get your heart racing. I love these books…they’re one of my comfort reads and I revisit them often.

The House of Pleasure series by Kate Pearce. If a book has Kate Pearce’s name on it I know I’m going to love it. The nine books in this historical erotic series set in a Regency-era brothel will give you all the romance, sex and bit of kink you could want.

And since I love a series, I’m currently working on a follow up to my paranormal erotic ménage, Dying to Love Her. (My heroes take personal training to a new level—which I could use after eating all those peanut butter kiss cookies during the holidays.)


When Melanie Woodson joins Empriva Fitness she expects to lose weight, not gain two sexy vampire personal trainers. With an exercise regimen that includes passionate horizontal workouts, fat-burning orgasms and lusty words of encouragement, she’s in serious danger of forgetting their relationship is based on a business agreement and not mutual attraction.

Alec Kosta and Rook Abernathy, best friends and owners of Empriva, have waited over a century for the right lifemate to come along. Now that they’ve found Melanie, with her endless curves and quick wit, they’re ready to give up countless lifetimes to spend just one with her.

But time isn’t on their side—they’ve tasted her blood and now mere days are all they have to convince her their love is real or risk losing their chance to be with her forever.

A Romantica® paranormal ménage erotic romance from Ellora’s Cave

Happy Reading everyone!




Barnes & Noble:

Ellora’s Cave:



Book Trailer:

Monday, January 13, 2014

It's effing cold here and Kelly is an idiot

This story might be confusing to those of you who live in warmer climates and are not familiar with the need to plug cars in. No, our cars are not electric. We plug the block heater in to keep the engine block warm so the car will start when it’s cold.

We’ve been in quite a deep freeze here in central Canada. Apparently it made the news that we were colder than Mars. This makes everything a challenge — the cars have to be plugged in at night, wearing big mitts all the time definitely makes you appreciate the value of opposable thumbs, and driving anywhere takes twice as long because the streets are so icy and rutted. (The city has done a TERRIBLE job of clearing the streets this year, but that’s a whole other rant.)

So, the night before Christmas Eve, my hubs went out to plug my car in for me.  He couldn’t find my extension cord, so he used one that my daughter had bought in case her boyfriend needed to plug in. In the morning, I drove to work and when I was about 3/4 of the way there I suddenly realized my car had been plugged in and I didn’t unplug it. Eeep. When I got to work, I checked, but no extension cord was attached to the plug at the front of my car. On the upside, there, wrapped around one of the plug-in posts at work right where I park, was a blue extension cord — my lost extension cord! Apparently I drove away from work one day and left it there. Some kind person must have picked it up and put it there. As for the cord I’d just driven away with, I could only hope maybe it was still attached at home.

But no such luck. In my office I checked my phone and saw a text message from my husband saying, “You drove away with the extension cord.”

Shit. That meant the cord was lying on Portage Avenue somewhere between home and work. Oh well.

Note— in winter here, extension cords randomly littering the streets is a common sight. Like this:

Since it was my daughter’s cord I had to go buy one to replace it. I texted her to confess my sin and ask how long it was. She said it was 25 feet. Shit.

On Christmas Eve I did NOT want to go shopping, but I went to Home Depot which was happily not too busy and I bought her a new 25 foot extension cord.

Later, my whole family was killing themselves laughing at the image of me driving along,  oblivious to the 25 foot extension cord dragging along behind me. They asked, didn’t anyone honk or wave at me to point it out? I said no. Of course it was morning and I’d had no coffee. I might not have noticed. Now, it’s not unusual to see someone driving along with a forgotten extension cord dragging, or to see a cord lying on the road, especially at the beginning of winter before we all get used to this again. But a 25 foot one trailing along? Yeah, you don’t see that very often. I’m sure people were cracking up as they saw me.

Even worse, this was apparently the second time I’d done this so far this winter. But rest assured I will now be more aware of the extension cords and will NOT lose another one this year. I hope. Also it is warming up, so I don’t have to plug in. So there’s that.

Who else plugs in their car? Farther south, have you even heard of this?