Giveaway + Excerpt from Blade of Darkness by Dianne Duvall

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Giveaway + Excerpt from Blade of Darkness by Dianne Duvall

Return to the “utterly addictive” (RT Book Reviews) world of New York Times bestselling author Dianne Duvall’s Immortal Guardians.

Dana Pembroke has been able to glimpse the future of those she touches for as long as she can remember.  But she never saw Aidan coming.  When the tall, dark Celt with the charming grin yet world-weary eyes walks through her door, the future she sees for him is one full of violence, danger, deception… and passion.  Because amidst the terrifying battles that unfold in her visions, she also sees herself in Aidan’s arms and in his bed.  Dana knows she should keep her distance, but the tender moments and laughter they share entice her even as she finds herself thrust into a world of vampires, immortals, and other preternatural beings.

Immortal Guardian Aidan O’Byrne has been hunting and slaying psychotic vampires for nearly three thousand years, so visions of bloody battles don’t trouble him.  The battles Dana foresees, however, show Aidan’s brethren turning against him, so he can’t help but feel alarmed.  While he spends as much time as he can with Dana, struggling to decipher her dire predictions, Aidan finds himself utterly smitten. Hope rises that he has finally found a woman who can banish the darkness and loneliness that plague him. But when vampires begin targeting Dana and a powerful enemy spawns chaos, will fate grant them time to find happiness together?


Excerpt from Blade of Darkness

Smiling, she motioned to the bed. “You recognize this place?”

He nodded, his eyes acquiring an amber glow. “This is where we made love in your vision.”

Her pulse picked up. “So it is.” What the hell was wrong with her? She had just had the scare of a lifetime—two actually—but suddenly could think of nothing but the feel of Aidan’s hands on her, tugging her shirt over her head so he could touch bare skin, teasing her nipples and tantalizing her with his tongue.

Heat flashed through her.

“Shall I tell Heather we’d like another room?” he asked.

Dana shook her head.

He took a step toward her. “Do you want me to sleep on the floor?”

Again she wagged her head from side to side, staggered by the desire that suddenly coursed through her.

Aidan slowly approached her. “What do you want?” he asked softly.

“Honestly?”

“Honestly.”

“I want you,” she stated boldly. “Naked. I want to feel your bare body against mine.”

His eyes brightened with amber light. “Dana,” he whispered, his voice deepening as he drew close enough to touch.

“I think,” she said breathlessly as she tilted her head back to look up at him, “that I’m doing that thing where—after narrowly escaping death—you feel a sudden, driving need to reaffirm life.”

He settled his hands on her hips and squeezed as though he wanted desperately to let those hands go exploring and was barely keeping them in check. “Don’t tempt me, sweetheart.”

Easing forward, she leaned her body into his. “I’ll tempt you and more,” she promised, sucking in a breath when he slid his large hands around and down to cup her ass.

Both moaned when she rose onto her toes and arched against the hard length behind his fly.


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Author Bio:

Dianne Duvall is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author of the Immortal Guardians series and The Gifted Ones series. Reviewers have called Dianne’s books “fast-paced and humorous” (Publishers Weekly), “utterly addictive” (RT Book Reviews), “extraordinary” (Long and Short Reviews), and”wonderfully imaginative” (The Romance Reviews). Her books have twice been nominated for RT Reviewers’ Choice Awards and are routinely deemed Top Picks by RT Book Reviews, The Romance Reviews, and/or Night Owl Reviews.

Dianne loves all things creative. When she isn’t writing, Dianne is active in the independent film industry and has even appeared on-screen, crawling out of a moonlit grave and wielding a machete like some of the vampires she creates in her books.

For the latest news on upcoming releases, contests, and more, please visit DianneDuvall.com. You can also find Dianne online . . .

Author Social Media Links

Facebook | Website | Twitter | Goodreads

Cover and Exclusive Excerpt Reveal – Riptide by Skye Jordan

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Cover and Exclusive Excerpt Reveal – Riptide by Skye Jordan

Who’s ready for a hot new Renegade!?! SBC Elite Author Skye Jordan is treating us to another installment of this sexy series.

Pre-Order Riptide Now!
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Synopsis

When pro surfer Zach Ellis isn’t traveling the world-wide competition circuit, he works as a Renegade stunt double for the hit TV series, Hawaiian Heat. After years of tangling with the ocean, his body has paid the price. So when he gets a shot at a star roll on the show, Zach’s all in. He celebrates the career opportunity by taking a chance on a woman who’s not his usual island-girl type, only to discover he can’t bear to let her go.

Tessa Drake belongs mired in legislative battles in Washington DC, not standing on the sidelines of a filming set in Maui like a wannabe starlet. But even more important than her law career, Tessa needs Zach Ellis’s signature on legal papers. Papers that relinquish his parental rights so Tessa can adopt the girl who already calls her mommy. When she discovers Zach has slipped out of town before she makes contact, Tessa takes solace in the sexy star of Hawaiian Heat. A man whose warmth and dazzling grin makes her Mensa-level IQ vanish into thin air.

After an electrifying night together, Tessa is horrified to discover just who rocked her world. Zach is stunned to learn he’s a father. And both find themselves caught in a riptide pulling them in the opposite direction of their dreams.

Catch up with the Shameless-Recommended Renegades!

Enter Skye’s giveaway of a $20 Amazon gift card and a digital copy of Riptide.

Excerpt from Riptide

She blew out a breath, trying to calm her nerves, but it wasn’t working. “I came to talk about Sophia, but…I don’t think this is a good time…”

“Hey.” He came toward her, his voice soft and concerned. “What’s wrong?”

A better question would be ‘What wasn’t wrong?’

“Everything,” she said, dropping her hand and sniffling back the sudden sting of tears. “Nothing.” She choked back more emotion. The urgent need to find a dark corner where she could break and no one would see overwhelmed her. She turned toward the door. “I’m sorry. I can’t do this.”

“Hold on.” His warm hand closed on her forearm, then his other slipped around her waist from behind. “Hold on.”

Tessa squeezed her eyes shut and rubbed them hard, willing the tears to dry up, but the emotions inside her wouldn’t stop spiraling, and a sob escaped.

He turned her to face him and enveloped her in his arms all at the same time, pulling her to her toes and stealing her breath. She was trapped in his big, strong arms, holding her like she mattered, like she meant something to him—something more than a meaningless hookup. More than the woman he had to deal with to see his daughter. More than a pseudo-mom, a nursemaid, an employee.

Her mind couldn’t wait for a private place to snap. She’d endured too much for too long. Hearing Zach’s honest opinion of her overloaded her already overtaxed emotional system. Tears leaked from her eyes and slid over his bare skin.

“Sh-shit…” she stuttered through the emotion choking her. “I’m s-sorry. I just…” She took another breath, but couldn’t find control. “It’s all so much s-sometimes…”

“Shh, it’s okay.” He stroked her hair and kissed her head. “Let go. I’m here.”

That made her cry harder—in fear, in hope, in gratitude. God, she was so fucked-up. She buried her face against his chest. She had to stop. He was going to think she was a lunatic. That she was unstable and couldn’t take care of Sophia.

“Tessa,” he crooned, his voice so soft, so understanding. “The harder you hold on to it, the scarier it seems. You’re safe here. Let it go.”

Her body didn’t give her a choice. The tears flooded over her lashes, the sobs choked her, and she trembled.

Zach slid his arms lower and picked her up. Carrying her to the couch, he sank into the cushions, where he pushed her thighs apart so she straddled his lap. He tilted his head and pressed kisses to her cheeks, then rubbed away the tears. He combed his hands through her hair and murmured such sweet things. “I’m here. I’m not going to steal Sophia. You’re an amazing mother. We’re going to work this out. I’m scared too, but we can do this. I believe in us.”

His words were so sweet, they hurt. And it felt like forever before her body relaxed against his. Until her sobs quieted to hiccups. Until she could breathe properly.

He cupped her face and pushed her back to look at her. So much emotion brewed in his eyes—passion, intensity, confusion. Then he leaned in while pulling her toward him and kissed her hard. A murmur of surprise ebbed from her throat. His tongue swept into her mouth, found hers, and devastated her with an erotic kiss she felt all the way to the bone. Dizzy, she leaned back to tell Zach they shouldn’t make things any more complicated. But he pulled her tee off over her head, stroked those big, warm hands down her back, and Tessa’s resistance caved.

Shared with permission from the author

Pre-order Riptide now!

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Aced by K. Bromberg Excerpt Reveal

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Aced by K. Bromberg Excerpt Reveal

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Synopsis

Rylee and Colton’s ride continues…

One moment. Six years ago.

The night she made the world around me so much more than just a blur. Now it’s the catalyst that threatens to tear us apart.

Our happily was supposed to be ever after. So why do I feel like it’s slipping through my fingers?

How can one moment, when our world seemed so right, resurface and cause our perfect life to spiral out of control?

I can’t lose her.

She’s my checkered flag.

ACEDcover

“Smoldering! Rylee and Colton’s romance continues burning up the pages in this steamy and exhilarating addition to the beloved Driven series!” – Katy Evans, Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author

Colton Donavan is back in ACED, January 11, 2016!

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Excerpt

Staring at the empty doorway, I’m not quite sure what to think so I lean back in the chair and blow out a slow and steady breath to calm myself. Colton’s never said anything like that to me before, and while everything he just said holds serious merit, I’m still astounded he said it. And while a small part of me warms, knowing he wants to take care of me, a larger part is irritated he’s laying down the law. The irony.

It doesn’t mean I have to abide by it though.

I look toward the ceiling and close my eyes momentarily. The many things I need to do run through my head, but I can’t do any of them because I can’t leave my house, can’t carry on my life like normal. I’m stuck here and that thought alone makes me feel claustrophobic.

I’m exposed to the world but trapped in my house.

Feeling defeated, my eyes flutter open to see the beach beyond the windows down below. And for the first time since we’ve met, I truly understand why Colton finds such refuge in his beloved beach—the crash of the waves, the feel of the sand beneath his feet, and the sense he’s this tiny blip on Mother Nature’s radar.

A soft chuckle falls from my lips as it hits me. On the beach, he feels inconsequential. How very fitting for a man who once told me I would never be that to him to have the need to feel that way at times.

My mind shifts back to that place and time. A ghost of a smile turns up my lips of the welcome memory of the Merit Rum party: dancing in the club followed by him chasing me into the hallway. Angry words. Contemptuous kisses. Hungry eyes. An elevator ride to the penthouse with a promised threat to decide. Yes. Or. No.

I find comfort in the memory. Without that night, there most likely wouldn’t be this. No Colton. No baby on the way. No chaos to want to hide from.

My eyes are drawn back to the beach. To the temptation of Colton’s place to escape. Sadly, right now, I couldn’t escape down there if I wanted to. At least he can get on his board and paddle out beyond the break to get some distance from the photographers. I’m not so lucky.

What I’d give to be inconsequential right now.

And yet deep down, no matter how hard I try, I know I will never be that to Colton. He’d never allow it. My handsome, complicated, and very stubborn husband takes too much pride in the two things he never thought he’d have—a wife and her love—to ever let me feel inconsequential again.

About the Author

KBromberg

New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author K. Bromberg writes contemporary novels that contain a mixture of sweet, emotional, a whole lot of sexy and a little bit of real. She likes to write strong heroines and damaged heroes who we love to hate and hate to love.

Shes a mixture of most of her female characters: sassy, intelligent, stubborn, reserved, outgoing, driven, emotional, strong, and wears her heart on her sleeve. All of which she displays daily with her husband and three children where they live in Southern California.

On a whim, K. Bromberg decided to try her hand at this writing thing. Since then she has written The Driven Series (Driven, Fueled, Crashed, Raced), the standalone Driven Novels (Slow Burn, Sweet Ache, Hard Beat, Aced (a new Rylee and Colton novel releasing 1/11/16), and a short story titled UnRaveled. She is currently working on new projects and a few surprises for her readers.

She loves to hear from her readers so make sure you check her out on social media.

Connect With Kristy

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Exclusive Excerpt Reveal and Giveaway: Big Rock by Lauren Blakely

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Exclusive Excerpt Reveal and Giveaway: Big Rock by Lauren Blakely

We are thrilled to be bringing you all of the latest from Lauren Blakely’s upcoming title, BIG ROCK. Plus, we have a surprise announcement from Lauren!

A standalone sexy romantic comedy, BIG ROCK takes everything you love about a Lauren Blakely novel –witty dialogue, smoking hot sex scenes, and heartfelt moments –and puts them into one fantastic book! BIG ROCK is set to release Thursday, January 6th! Readers can start their new year off right with Spencer! BIG ROCK is a standalone, dirty romance novel written from the guy’s POV. Come join us as we meet Spencer-parts, heart and all!

Certifiedstandalone

EXCERPT:

PROLOGUE

My dick is fucking awesome.

But don’t just take my word for it. Consider all its accomplishments.

First, let’s start with the obvious one.

Size.

Sure, some people will tell you that size does not matter. You know what I’ll tell you? They lie.

You don’t want a tiny diamond on your finger when you can have three carats. You don’t want a one-dollar bill when you can have a Benjamin. And you don’t want to ride a miniature pony when you can saddle up on a rock-star cock at the rodeo of your pleasure.

Why? Because bigger is better. It’s more fun. Ask any woman who’s had to utter the dreaded words, “Is it in yet?”

No woman has ever had to ask me that.

You’re probably wondering by now—just how big is it? C’mon. A gentleman doesn’t tell. I may fuck like a god, but I’m still a gentleman. I’ll open your door before I open your legs. I’ll hold your coat for you, I’ll pay for dinner, and I’ll treat you like a queen in and out of bed.

But I get it. You want an image in your mind. A measurement in inches to make your mouth water. Fine. Imagine this. Picture your fantasy-sized cock; mine’s fucking bigger.

Moving on to looks. Let’s be honest. Some dicks are just motherfucking ugly. I won’t get into all the reasons why. You know what they are, and for now, when it comes to my best asset, all I want you thinking about are these words: long, thick, smooth, hard. If the Renaissance masters were carving sculptures of cocks, mine would be the model for all of them.

But honestly, none of this would matter if my dick didn’t possess the most important attribute of all.

Performance.

Ultimately, a man’s dick should be measured by the number of orgasms it delivers. I’m not talking about the solo flights. That’s cheating. I’m talking about the Os that can make a woman’s back arch, her toes curl, her windows shatter, her world rock.

How much pleasure has my dick wrought? I don’t kiss and tell, but I’ll leave you with this. My dick has a perfect track record.

That’s why it fucking sucks that he has to go on hiatus.

 

BigRockbyLaurenBlakelyCover

 

ABOUT BIG ROCK:

It’s not just the motion of the ocean, ladies. It’s definitely the SIZE of the boat too.

And I’ve got both firing on all cylinders. In fact, I have ALL the right assets. Looks, brains, my own money, and a big cock.

You might think I’m an asshole. I sound like one, don’t I? I’m hot as sin, rich as heaven, smart as hell and hung like a horse.

Guess what? You haven’t heard my story before. Sure, I might be a playboy, like the NY gossip rags call me. But I’m the playboy who’s actually a great guy. Which makes me one of a kind.

The only trouble is, my dad needs me to cool it for a bit. With conservative investors in town wanting to buy his flagship Fifth Avenue jewelry store, he needs me not only to zip it up, but to look the part of the committed guy. Fine. I can do this for Dad. After all, I’ve got him to thank for the family jewels. So I ask my best friend and business partner to be my fiancée for the next week. Charlotte’s up for it. She has her own reasons for saying yes to wearing this big rock.

And pretty soon all this playing pretend in public leads to no pretending whatsoever in the bedroom, because she just can’t fake the kind of toe-curling, window-shattering orgasmic cries she makes as I take her to new heights between the sheets.

But I can’t seem to fake that I might be feeling something real for her.

What the fuck have I gotten myself into with this…big rock?

BIG ROCK is a standalone, dirty romance novel written from the guy’s POV by NYT Bestselling author Lauren Blakely…

Pre-Order BIG ROCK Today!

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And that’s not all! Lauren Blakely has a surprise for you!

 

✮✮✮ MISTER ORGASM is coming soon! ✮✮✮

 

That’s right! Lauren has a second standalone romantic comedy headed your way in Summer 2016!

 

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000038_00074]

 

About MISTER ORGASM:

Just call me Mr. Orgasm. No, really. I insist.

Orgasms are my specialty. Delivering them. Administering them. Giving them in multiples. Then doing it again for an encore. I’m like the superhero of pleasure.

But before anyone gets all up in a lather about my “manwhore ways,” remember this. You probably didn’t even look at me years ago. You likely didn’t give me the time of day when I was the quiet geek bent over his notebook drawing cartoons about a caped crusader bestowing orgasmic pleasure to womankind.

Now, that I’m creator of the hottest animated TV show in the world — The Adventures of Mr. Orgasm — everything has changed. The women have lined up. The checks roll in. And the life I’m living is gooooooood — looks, talent, and a masterful dong have gotten me far.

There’s only one thing in my way — the woman I took home last night has turned out to be my new boss.

Oops.

Looks like the Adventures of Mr. Orgasm have only just begun…

Pre-Order MISTER ORGASM Today!

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✮✮✮ Enter to win this amazing giveaway for a Kindle Fire preloaded with an Advanced Reading Copy of BIG ROCK! ✮✮✮

 

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Author pic - Lauren Blakely

About Lauren Blakely:

Lauren Blakely writes sexy contemporary romance novels with heat, heart, and humor, and she has had eight books on the New York Times Bestseller list and fifteen on the USA Today Bestseller list. Like the heroine in her novel, FAR TOO TEMPTING, she thinks life should be filled with family, laughter, and the kind of love that love songs promise. Lauren lives in California with her husband, children, and dogs. She loves hearing from readers! Her bestselling series include Sinful Nights, Seductive Nights, No Regrets, Caught Up in Love, and Fighting Fire. She recently released SWEET SINFUL NIGHTS, the first novel in her new sexy romance series Sinful Nights that became an instant New York Times Bestseller. Her new adult forbidden romance, 21 Stolen Kisses, hit e-readers in May and landed on the USA Today Bestseller list. In January, she’ll release BIG ROCK, a standalone contemporary romance sure to make you swoon. She also writes for young adults under the name Daisy Whitney. To receive an email when Lauren releases a new book, text BLAKELY + your email address to 678-249-3375 (please use the actual + sign).

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One More Chance by Abbi Glines Excerpt Reveal #AtriaIndies

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One More Chance by Abbi Glines Excerpt Reveal #AtriaIndies

Fall in Love Tour BannerToday you get another sneak peek at One More Chance, the continuation of Grant and Harlow’s story from Take a Chance. You’ll get our full recommendation on September 4th, but this should hold you over until then…

ONE MORE CHANCE Excerpt Chain Schedule
Check out all of these stops for your advance look at Grant and Harlow’s final story!
Day 1 – 8/25: abbiglines.com
Day 2 – 8/26: autumnreview.com
Day 3 – 8/27: natashaisabookjunkie.com
Day 4 – 8/28: abbiglines.com
Day 5 – 8/29: smutbookclub.com
Day 6 – 8/30: rockstarsofromance.com
Day 7 – 8/31: abbiglines.com

Harlow

One More Chance

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“No one will persuade me to give up my baby. I will not choose myself over this child. I can’t. I won’t. I just . . . don’t ask me to again, just understand that I have to do this my way.”

Mase tensed beside me. Any reminder that I was taking a gamble with my life upset him. But it was my life to choose. I didn’t push him to agree. We walked in silence to the house.

Maryann stood over the stove in a blue and white polka-dotted apron, which I knew was monogrammed on the front. It had been a gift from me when I was seventeen. When the screen door slammed behind us, Maryann glanced over her shoulder and smiled.

“Just about ready. Set the table for me, will you?” she said, then turned back to the stove.

Mase went to the silverware drawer, and I went for the plates. This had become a regular routine. After putting down four place settings, I went to get the mason jars and fill them with ice and sweet tea.

“Five places today. Major will be here for lunch. He called this morning to let me know he was on his way into town. Dad agreed to hire him for the next six months. He needs a break from the drama at home, and we need another strong pair of arms around here.”

From what I remembered of Major, he was a bully. A scrawny, mean bully. But then, I hadn’t seen Mase’s cousin since he was ten, so things could have changed. He should be taller than four and a half feet and have his braces off by now.

“Uncle Chap still planning on divorcing this one?” Mase asked as concern wrinkled his brow. We never talked about his cousin, mostly because Major had lived in a different country every time Mase had mentioned him. Uncle Chap was a Ma­rine, and he was hard-core. He also made it his goal in life to marry as many young, beautiful women as he could. Major always had a new mom.

Take a Chance

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That much I remembered.

Maryann sighed and set the biscuits on the table. “The thing is, this time it isn’t about some pretty young thing want­ing a sugar daddy. Hillary also wanted Major, and apparently, she got him. Major made a mistake, and, well, Chap isn’t very happy with his wife or his son. Major can’t go home and face his dad now, and he doesn’t want to go back to college. He’s confused and unhappy.”

Mase set the pitcher of tea on the table and swung a surprised expression toward me. He hadn’t known this bit of information. Interesting. “You mean . . . Major tapped his stepmom?”

“Don’t say tapped,” Maryann said as she frowned at her son. “And yes, he did. But Hillary was only four years older than Major. What did Chap expect? He’s an old man, and he mar­ried a young girl, then put her in a house with his beautiful son while he went off to work all the time.”

Mase let out a low whistle and then chuckled. “Major tapped his stepmom,” he said again.

“That’s enough. He will be here any minute, and I know he’s embarrassed about all this. Be nice. Ask him about col­lege or what he wants to do. Just don’t talk about Hillary or his dad.”

I was trying hard not to look completely disturbed by this. I couldn’t picture Major as beautiful by any stretch of the imagination. But then, all I knew was the ten-year-old Major, not the twenty-one-year-old who could attract a woman who shouldn’t want him.

A swift knock on the door got our attention, and all eyes in the kitchen turned to the door as the grown-up version of Major Colt walked into the room.

GiveMeGrantCan’t get enough Grant & Harlow? Enter for a chance to read an extended excerpt from Atria Books by posting your favorite Grant & Harlow line or telling Atria how excited you are to read One More Chance by using #OneMoreChance on Twitter or Instagram! Details here: http://bit.ly/RosemaryBeachClub. #GiveMeGrant

Don’t forget to check out rockstarsofromance.com tomorrow for the second to last episode in the ONE MORE CHANCE excerpt chain!

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#1 New York Times bestselling author Abbi Glines continues the unforgettable story of Grant Carter, the irrestible playboy who first captured readers’ hearts in Fallen Too Far.

The second installment in a never before published New Adult duet by #1 New York Times bestselling author Abbi Glines, ONE MORE CHANCE is the follow up to the smash hit TAKE A CHANCE, and concludes the story of Grant Carter, a fan favorite character, and Harlow.

She was it. His one. His only. Then he made the mistake of letting her go.

After fighting his way into Harlow Manning’s heart—and revealing a side of himself no one had ever seen before—Grant Carter destroyed his own heart by giving in to his greatest fears and doubts. Months later, he’s stuck in a miserable routine. Work relentlessly. Beg his best friend Rush for news about Harlow. Avoid all other friends. Leave nightly voicemails for Harlow, pleading with her to come back to Rosemary Beach. Fall asleep alone. Repeat.

Miles away, on her brother’s Texas ranch, Harlow can’t bring herself to listen to Grant’s voicemails. Though she wants to be with him, and knows he regrets letting her go, she doesn’t know if she can trust him. When he discovered the truth behind her sheltered upbringing, it shattered their relationship, but the secret she carries now has far greater consequences. Can she risk giving Grant one more chance, or will the gamble ultimately destroy her?

With her signature passionate characters and sizzling connections, Abbi Glines debuts another steamy, page-turning novel that will leave readers desperate for more.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
ABBI GLINES is the New York Times, USA TODAY, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of the Rosemary Beach, Sea Breeze, Vincent Boys, and Existence series. A devoted booklover, Abbi lives with her family in Alabama. She maintains a Twitter addiction at @AbbiGlines and can also be found on Facebook and at AbbiGlines.com.

“Only Abbi Glines can pull off a heart-wrenching love story like this.” – Tammara Webber, New York Times bestselling author

ONE MORE CHANCE by Abbi Glines
Paperback | On Sale: 09/02/14| ISBN: 9781476756578 | $15.00 | 256 pages | eBook: 9781476756592

EXCERPT BLAST: The Minaldi Legacy by Courtney Cole

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EXCERPT BLAST: The Minaldi Legacy by Courtney Cole

The Minaldi Legacy consists of two parts, part one: Of Blood and Bone, and part two:  Of Darkness and Demons. It contains adult themes and content.

THE MINALDI LEGACY Synopsis

“I’m a monster, Eva.  There’s no saving a monster.  But I love that you want to try.” 

Luca Minaldi is rich, powerful and mesmerizing.  He’s also a reclusive enigma.  He lives in Malta, a fairy-tale place filled with sunshine and sea, beauty and secrets.  And Luca’s darkest of secrets is the best-kept of them all.

Eva Talbot moves to Malta to finish her doctoral dissertation in Psychiatry.  When she meets Luca, there is a very real and instant attraction that she has never felt before. But even still, she senses the darkness that lives within him.

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Eva is hired to care for Luca’s mother, a woman who suffers from dementia.  It is Luca, however, that Eva will eventually risk everything to save… as the legacy that plagues him continues.

As the darkness swirls ever more tightly around her, Eva realizes that no matter how hard she tries, she might not be able to save Luca without losing herself.

Eva and Luca are thrust into a world where their love is tested and darkness reigns.  Amid chaos and treachery, love and hate, Luca and Eva learn one important thing.

Love is dangerous.

But it also might be the one thing that can save them all.

Minaldi Legacy-Luca

EXCERPT

Prologue

Luca is gone.

I know it before I open my eyes.  The weight of his body next to me is absent, the scent of him gone from the air.  I sigh, reluctant to begin this day because I know what it holds for me.  I know that if Luca is truly gone, I will spend every hour frantically searching for him.

Gazing around, I find my large suite empty.  Everything is neat and tidy and exactly in place. Each lavish piece of furniture is polished with lemon oil, each extravagant painting on the wall carefully dusted.  Each expensive vase, each crystal lamp, each woven rug is perfectly aligned and exactly how I left it.  Something is different, though, somehow changed in this room that I fell asleep in last night.

My sleepy eyes do another quick sweep, and this time I notice the balcony doors standing wide open while the bright morning sun streams onto the mahogany floor and the white sheer curtains on either side flutter in the sea breeze.

This is the difference and it slams into me like a concrete wall.  I didn’t fall asleep with those doors open. I would never do that now, not since I know what dangers lurk in the world, the darkness that can find me.

Immediately after I notice this inconsistency, I also see that across the room, my bedroom door is tightly closed and the bolt is still slid firmly in place.

Just as I left it last night.

My heart stutters as I realize what this means.

While I slept, Luca must have climbed from my balcony ledge to escape.  But the drop is well over thirty feet and there are sharp rocks at the base of the house.  There are gardens directly behind, but beyond that, there is a cliff with a hundred foot drop to the sea below.

I leap naked from bed and rush to the balcony’s edge.  My bare breasts press against the cold railing as I peer down at both the gardens and what I can see of the pristine sand beyond that.  Luca is not lying broken and bleeding there, so I try to still my racing heart.  I search the beaches and craggy landscape on both sides of my periphery and I still do not see him.

He somehow survived the fall.

A hundred different things run through my mind, but the one that stands out in the forefront is the image, the possibility, that he managed to drag himself, broken and bleeding, to a different location, somewhere where he is even now waiting for me to help him.

Because I promised.

I promised him that I would help him, that I would keep him from the darkness that plagues him, that I would heal him.

That I would save him.

I swallow hard and as I do, I realize that my throat is tender from Luca’s hands last night. I know that if I look into a mirror, there will be a bruise in the perfect formation of his long fingers around my neck.

As I softly touch it, I remember his face from the night before.  It was shadowed in the moonlight and like always, he was beautiful.  Luca is handsome in a very classic and beautiful way, dark hair and cut cheekbones.  His bangs are long and almost hide his magnificent dark eyes until he shakes his hair away.  And when he does, the sadness that dwells there is apparent to anyone who knows him.

But last night, I didn’t need to look into his eyes to see that his darkness had returned.  I knew it from the moment he stepped into my room.

I can always see it.  It changes everything about him, even the way he walks and moves.  The way he stands.  The way he speaks.  The way he feels.

He is an entirely different person when the darkness comes.

These are the moments that he dreads with every breath when he is himself; the moments when he is no longer Luca.  In these moments, he is filled with thoughts that are no longer his own.

He cannot help it, he cannot control it, he cannot stop it.

But I promised him that I would.

And I have failed him.

I scramble to my wardrobe and pull on clothing, choosing a shirt with a collar, hoping to somewhat hide the bruise on my neck.  The only other people here at Chessarae are servants, except for Luca’s mother in her lonely wing.  But she is locked in so she never comes into the main part of the house.  No one will see me but the staff.  And they are used to seeing strange things.

I rush through the house, through the extravagant corridors and over the marble floors, the rich and polished surroundings that I would never have dreamed I would find myself in.  I don’t notice it now though.  It has faded into an insignificant corner of my mind.  All that matters now is Luca.

I make my way out the back of the house, through the gardens, through the English maze that is perfectly manicured and challenging to maneuver.  I manage it with ease, however.  I memorized its twists and turns on a happier day.

The weather is stormy today and the normally cheerful and bright Maltese sky is gray and thunderous. I can feel the electricity in the air, snapping the ends of my long hair with static.  This day looks as foreboding as I feel, which I hope is not a sign.

I search through the maze.  I search the beaches as my feet sink into the cool sand.  I search the gardens with their exotic and sweet-smelling blooms and then I search the garage.  His car, a shiny black Jaguar, is still in its slot and its hood is cool to the touch.  Luca has not driven it today.  I search the front lawns and the back.  And just when I begin to panic, to fear that he has not returned to Chessarae after all, I search the stables.

As I walk through the heavy wooden doors, the smells of the horses and the hay and the saddle-soap and leather assail my nose and I breathe them in.  I’ve always loved this place.  It is peaceful here.  And I suddenly know, because I can feel it, that Luca is here.

I walk quietly down the main corridor, staring into each stall as I pass.

And finally, finally, when I come to the very last stall on the left, Luca is there and my breath hitches in my chest, freezing on my lips.

Luca is slumped on the ground, in the corner, his expression desolate. He is beautiful even here, even in this condition, and I cannot help but stare down at him as tears fill my eyes.

He is dirty and his clothing is torn.  There are smears of blood on his shirt, dried now to a rusty dark brown.  I swallow hard, trying not to imagine where the blood has come from.

Luca’s face is tortured as he stares up at me, his head in his hands.  There is blood on his fingers.

“It happened again.”

His words are low and husky and rough, yet elegant at the same time.  He is always refined, always perfect, always Luca.

His self-loathe is apparent and it breaks my heart.

I nod mutely because there are no words for this moment.  I bend to help him to his feet.  At 6’3”, he towers above me.  He is slender and strong and masculine.  He is lithe and powerful, beautiful and graceful.

And sometimes, on his very darkest days, he is a depraved killer.

But I have gotten ahead of myself.  I should begin at the beginning.

If I don’t, you will never understand.

TML Excerpt Blast Banner

HeadshotABOUT COURTNEY COLE:

Courtney Cole is a novelist who would eat mythology for breakfast if she could. She has a degree in Business, but has since discovered that corporate America is not nearly as fun to live in as fictional worlds. She loves chocolate and roller coasters and hates waiting and rude people.

Courtney lives in quiet suburbia, close to Lake Michigan, with her real-life Prince Charming, her ornery kids (there is a small chance that they get their orneriness from their mother) and a small domestic zoo.

LINKS:                                                                 

Website:  http://www.courtneycoleauthor.com/

Blog:  http://courtneycolewrites.com/

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/Court_Writes

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/#!/courtneycolewrites

Author Goodreads:   http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3112212.Courtney_Cole

The Minaldi Legacy Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/series/97613-the-minaldi-legacy

Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/Courtney-Cole/e/B004Y4Z8ZU/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1375577792&sr=8-2-ent?tag=smutbookclub-20

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About Marissa

MarissaMy first foray into the Romance genre came my freshman year in high school English, where the teacher had us all read books from several different genres. So, my first book boyfriend and PnR introduction, if you will, was Richard Merlin, from The Wizard of Seattle. Prior to that, I’d only read Fantasy or Sci-fi, with a little teen horror thrown in for angst. I was reading The Vampire Diaries decades before it was even a twinkle in the eyes of the producers. Now, I am addicted to PnR, always reading at least one book a week about vamps, wolves, angels, demons, Fae, or overall magic. Follow me on Goodreads [/box_dark]

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