I am the worst blogger in history, I know, but I really am closing in on “The End” for Ache For Me. I am also in the process of changing the covers over for the whole series. The original covers are awesome (thank you, Jodi!), but since it’s been sooooooooo long since I published Live For Me, creating a cohesive series look seemed a good idea. And, it proved to be a wonderful one. Kim Killion is amazeballs. I can’t recommend her enough. Check out The Killion Group, you won’t regret it!
So… You might not be able to buy them with these covers quite yet… but here they are!
And, I’d better get back to Carter and Camryn!
So, I’ve been stuck in real life and illness and responsibilities and all manner of crap, but I am back to Camryn and Carter’s story and am resolved to have it to you this year. Yes, I know that means two years between releases, and right now the plot is making me insane, but I love these two and I hope you will, too! So… an excerpt?
Really? After everything your family has been through in the last few years, you don’t worry about your sister singing in a nightclub till after midnight?”
“I didn’t say we weren’t concerned,” Mason started.
“You need to hit the bag or something, man,” Caleb interrupted. “You’re too worked up and you’re going to hurt someone.”
“That someone would be me,” Mason said. “Look, she’s fine, and she’s not singing there anymore, right?”
“She’s a grown woman, Carter.”
Caleb’s eyebrows rose. “Sometimes I think he should’ve been the brother and you should be the friend. You know his name fits better.”
It wasn’t the first time he’d heard that, and it always made his skin crawl. The way he felt about Camryn already felt borderline incestuous. He didn’t need her brothers to point it out. “Just because your mom named you without a C doesn’t mean she loves you any less. Probably.”
Mason slugged him in the left shoulder. “She named me after herself. She loves me more, first born and all.”
“Yeah, yeah,” Caleb agreed with a sigh. “Get back to work. You two won’t learn anything standing around jawing.”
“Okay, Doc. You want me to beat the bag or your brother?”
Caleb gave him a small smile. “Definitely my brother.
So, June is Migraine Awareness month and of course those of us with this affliction are well aware of them, but I have been especially knocked out this year. In fact, I am WAY behind on both books I’ve been working on–ACHE FOR ME and BURN– but as soon as they are actually books and not, well, the collection of chapters I have so far I will share them with you.
Actually, since I haven’t posted anything in, like, four months, maybe you’d like an excerpt or two? Yes?
ACHE FOR ME (The Everetts of Tyler, Book 4)
Carter feigned sleep as long as he could, wondering what was going through Camryn’s head as he did. She’d been sobbing the night before, obviously shaken, and he hadn’t known what to do for her besides gather her in his arms. The decision had been the right one, but it’d been torture for him holding her and knowing that was all he could ever do. When her fingers slid across his biceps, feeling the muscle for a moment before trailing to his shoulder, he had to make himself known or pin her to the bed and take what he wanted.
Her hand immediately left his body. “Do you work out?”
She was wondering why he didn’t look like the nerdy pushover she remembered. He’d always stayed fit, but with brothers like his he’d been the runt. Smart, but not particularly athletic. In a family full of professional athletes, he was the one who played chess. He propped his head on one hand. “I’ve been learning martial arts with your brother.”
She laughed. “The doctor and the lawyer.”
“Caleb is the teacher. Mason and I are learning.”
“The doctor, the lawyer, and the banker?” She paused. “You’re lifting, too.”
“Gotta stay healthy,” he replied before steering the conversation away from his physique. He might be learning some moves, and he did have a weekly session with a trainer, but he wasn’t vain. “What do you say I make coffee?” he asked before rolling away. It was morning and he’d held Camryn in his arms all night. He needed to make a quick and inconspicuous exit before she noticed more than his muscles were hard.
BURN (Aylesford Book 1)
Giving up on sleep herself, Belle headed for the bathroom, dropping onto the low stool tucked under the built in vanity. She had the look of a woman well-loved, but she needed to get into the shower and get started on work. She had new inventory coming in for fall and nowhere to put it, so despite the lack of a building, she had a business to run. A chill snaked down her spine. Did the arsonist mean to kill her when he burned the store down? Everyone knew she lived above her shop. She rubbed her arms. This wasn’t mere destruction of property, this was attempted murder. Pure hate. Who hated her enough to kill her? And for lingerie and sex toys?
She shook her head. There was a strip club in Tyler, and at least two full-blown sex shops in Sheridan. She swallowed. Hers was the raciest store by far in Aylesford, but it was tasteful and her ads weren’t any more risqué than the national chains. Shit, the largest chain in the world had fashion shows with nearly naked women wearing wings on national television. Seduction was small potatoes compared to that. She shrugged. Maybe not such small potatoes in a conservative southern town.
She’d met some push-back when she’d first opened, but had paid it little mind. Women needed to feel sexy, and their men—or women, she wasn’t judgmental—ate it up. So, who, then? Who would try to kill her to prove a point, to drive her away or at least shut down her business? She rubbed her temples. She didn’t have the answers, but she had a lot of questions. It’d been three days since she lost her shop, and there was always Gabe’s theory the arson had something to do with Nate. He’d said he hadn’t dated in months because of her. She ignored the curl of warmth that settled in her belly at the thought. She hadn’t dated either because it was pointless. No other man had elicited the chemistry she had with Nate. She’d just ignored it for too long.
She tugged at her hair to get her mind back on track. If Gabe was right, maybe someone wanted her out of the way because she wanted Nate to herself. He was an incredible specimen of male perfection, but to kill to get him? She watched her expression sour as she thought about what happened to Mason Everett not long ago, and prayed Nate was safe.
Those of you who have been following me know this book tried (and succeeded multiple times) to kick my butt, but it’s now live! It won’t be in the ibookstore for a while yet, but you can grab your copy of Caleb and Haleigh’s story at all other ebook outlets (and yes, I will be a good author and give you links).
All Romance eBooks (epub, LIT, mobi)
Smashwords (all formats)
I’d love to say this is written as a stand-alone, and while it is (hopefully) enjoyable alone, it is best read in order as there are a lot of plot ties to FIGHT FOR ME. As always, reviews, likes and shares are very (very!) appreciated.
Now I have to get back to working on BURN, the first in the Aylesford Series!
LIVE FOR ME is finished! I know it’s been a looooong time in the making, and there’s still a final-final read through to do on my Kindle to see how it looks and make sure after the many rounds of edits and proofreading we didn’t miss anything, but Caleb and Haleigh’s story is coming (very) soon to an ereader near you.
Since it’s been so long, a snippet!
He raised his hand to knock on the battered metal door, but it opened quickly, framing an overwrought Haleigh haloed by the kitchen light, bringing to mind angels once again. He nearly slapped himself in the head. Her daughter was sick and here he was waxing poetic about how she looked. “Where is she?” he asked, his voice sharper than it should’ve been.
Her blue eyes went wide and he wanted to slap himself again. He knew she was skittish and panicked, yet he’d barked at her. Blowing out a breath, he rushed to the couch to find Georgia pale and curled in a fetal position, her brow slick with sweat. “Where does it hurt, sweetheart?”
“Tummy,” she answered, her little voice tired.
“I’m Dr. E, and I’m gonna make you all better. Is that okay with you?”
“E-I-E-I-O,” she sang softly. He sang the song with her as he lifted her into his arms, the heat of her fever seeping through his shirt. She had to be nearly delirious, but she was singing.
Haleigh followed after them, rushing to snatch her purse and lock the door. “Her car seat,” she called as he made it to his Jeep. She tore open the door of her small sedan to grab the plastic seat in question, crawling into the back of his SUV as soon as she had it in hand. “She has to go in the middle,” she dictated as she secured the seat. “So she’s safe.”
Haleigh was preoccupied with safety, yet she lived in the least secure apartment building he’d ever seen. Granted, he’d seen few, but it bothered him. They’d diagnose and fix up little Georgia and he’d see about the rest of it. If he was going to pursue something—or even if he wasn’t—he wasn’t comfortable with the two of them in a ground floor apartment.
That about sums it up right now. I am closing in on the end of LIVE FOR ME, and by God, I hope it wraps soon. These characters have given me a run for my money, and they sure have set my schedule back by, oh, a year. So, yeah, I hope by the time this thing is edited, revised, beta-read, re-edited, and proofread it A) Doesn’t suck and B) You enjoy it. I love Caleb and Haleigh and their friends and family, but holy crap on a cracker.
With that said, since it’s been hella long since I have posted anything here let alone a snippet…
She was cleaning up her office when a chill crawled up her spine, making her turn to look out the door and down the hall. Instincts on high alert, she took a deep breath to keep from panicking and searched the corridor for something or someone out of place. Finding nothing, she returned to her office, but the unease didn’t dissipate. Afraid something had happened to Georgia, she fished her phone from her bag.
“Mommy!” Georgie greeted from Caleb’s phone.
“Hi, baby. Are you having fun?”
“We seed a billion animals!”
“Uh-huh. And we had hot dogs and ice cream!”
At least she could say Caleb was true to his word. “I’m happy you’re having such a good time, baby girl. Can I talk to Dr. E?”
She heard Georgia tell Caleb it was his turn, and braced herself for the sound of his deep voice in her ear. “We’re fine, Mommy,” Caleb said through a laugh when he took the phone from Georgia.
“I wasn’t worried,” she denied, causing his laughter to intensify.
“Yes you were, and that’s okay.”
She sighed. “Having fun, Doc?”
“More than I thought possible. I promise she’s fine, and I won’t let anything happen to her. You don’t have to worry, Angel.”
It was silly that his endearment made her feel better. Ignoring the niggling sensation something was still wrong, she said, “I’m glad you’re enjoying the zoo. I’ll see you both after work.”
2013 has given way to 2014 and while I can’t say 2013 was a bad year, I’m excited to begin a new one. While we did buy a house at the end of February, I did not have a book release, and that is something that will definitely change this year! In fact, there will be two books released in 2014 come hell or high water!
And now I’d better get myself back over to one of those books I just promised!
Oh, and speaking of Live For Me…. A snippet!
“You still with me?” Caleb asked from across the table and she pulled herself out of her thoughts.
“Not just then. Where were you?”
She toyed with her food and he waited for an answer. “Upstairs,” she finally admitted quietly.
His smile was boyish. “Oh, really?”
“It’s your fault.”
“I am pretty irresistible.”
She loved him like this. Carefree, playful, seemingly unburdened by all that had transpired today. “Yes you are.” She flashed a grin before righting Georgia’s sippy-cup for the third time. “Even when you’re being impossible.”
“I’m not impossible,” he denied and she laughed.
You’d think after 15 years in retail I would be used to this, but every year I think I’ll be able to, I dunno, DO something, or see people, or pretend I have a life outside of the store, but every year I am wrong. Oh well, it is what it is, right? Supporting my family is the most important thing, and thank God for Amazon and Etsy– without them, no one would get anything for Christmas!
That said, I AM still working on LIVE FOR ME, and it is coming together. This has been a very hard book to write, and I really hope it doesn’t suck after all this time. I am still holding out hope for getting it to you before this year is out, but please don’t kill me if I’m wrong!
Speaking of the Everetts of Tyler, FIGHT FOR ME got a great review over at Satin Sheets Romance today! 5 Pillows and 2 Flames!
Aaaaaand…. since it’s been forever (or 5 weeks, whatever), a snippet from Live For Me!
Haleigh stood transfixed, the woman in the mirror unfamiliar. She’d spent the better part of two hours in Robin’s stylist chair, lotions and potions and whatnot applied to her hair and face, and now she… She was downright sultry. Added to the clothes her friend had finagled her into wearing, she felt like someone else, someone confident, someone sexy. She smiled, her teeth white behind her painted lips. She knew better than to think she could jump in with both feet, but she had ensured Georgia could spend the night with the Sinclairs anyway. If she was going to look like this, she wasn’t wasting it—Caleb was going to see her in all her glory. The thought sent butterflies skittering through her stomach. Maybe not all her glory, but he was definitely seeing this.
“You look spectacular,” Robin said from behind her.
“I look like someone else.”
Robin’s eyes narrowed in her reflection. “You asked for that.”
“I did, it’s just hard to get used to. I’m not this woman.” She had never dreamed she could be this woman, and she was still unsure whether she liked it. She didn’t look cheap by any means, but she looked untouchable, and that wasn’t her goal. Robin had done an amazing job, but underneath the paint she was still the same broken down house.
“You can be,” Robin said quietly. “You don’t always have to be therapist and mommy. Sometimes you can be a woman.”
“I don’t know how,” she admitted, the idiocy of her words ringing in her head.
Well, let’s just say I’m more behind than I thought I was and leave it at that. I got mired in a HUGE project at work and ended up working from home after hours and on weekends, so as soon as I have a book for you, you will have it. I swear– pinky promise and everything.
Until then, enjoy pumpkin spice everything and a snippet from Live For Me!
After last night at Chris Delmonico’s family restaurant, he wasn’t surprised the detective had insisted, although with what he knew about the former undercover narc, imagining him with a bunch of two, three, and four year olds made him want to sputter with laughter despite the gravity of the situation. “If you’re sure it’ll be safe, then she can go back to school. I don’t think I can shove off my surgeries again, and when I asked Haleigh to cancel her appointments yesterday we got in a fight.”
Jason’s eyes were bright with banked laughter. “A fight, eh?”
“You’re living with a woman, taking days off to go to the zoo with her daughter, trying to protect them both from a past you know nothing about, and I’m just supposed to drop it?”
He felt the muscle ticking in his jaw as he clenched his teeth. He didn’t want to go down this road with a trained interrogator, didn’t want to admit to anything when there was nothing from Haleigh to back him up, so he just gritted, “Yes.”