Psssst.....in case anyone missed it, I'm featured over at BTS and talking about Esablishing - and Maintaining - Suspense from An Investigator's Perspective. Check it out here!
Enjoy and happy Monday!
What a whirlwind of a week! Yesterday topped it off with this rainbow that popped up after a thunderstorm moved through the area. Seeing as there was snow on the ground (as you see) and you've got this southern California girl living up in the northeast, I was pleasantly surprised despite the somewhat upsetting news I had just received.
The news isn't crippling but it did take a bite out of my confidence. And rather than being able to rant and scream, toss a tantrum that would rival that of my 4 year old niece, I got out of my car and saw this rainbow. (the ranting and tantrum may have been fun, but I was picking up my 5 year old Beast, who knows how to toss one that gives me fright, no way could I show her exactly who she learned it from.)
The rainbow is just another reminder that things often have a way of surprising you, that change is imminent, and that you can either hop on the roller coaster called life and ride it with the best of them, or you can sit on the side and watch it all pass by.
Which would you choose?
New Jersey Romance Writer's Put Your Heart in a Book Conference will be held October 17th to 18th, 2014 at the Renaissance Woodbridge Hotel in Iselin, NJ. This year’s Keynote Speaker is Susan Mallery, Luncheon Speaker is Stella Cameron, Special Presentation Speaker is Jennifer Probst, and the Pre-Conference Workshop will be given by Roxanne St. Claire.
This year we’re celebrating our 30th Anniversary and we’re going all out! That means bigger, better, and more explosive than before. In short, it’s going to rock.
If you have an interesting workshop idea and want to be part of this renowned regional conference, please visit us online at:
http://www.rwa.org/e/sx/tk/eid=289 to complete the Speaker Submission form.
If you have ideas for more than one workshop, please submit each one separately.
Deadline for submissions is March 20, 2014.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact DC “Desi” at firstname.lastname@example.org, or Jackson at email@example.com.
We look forward to hearing from you!
Kidnapped Hearts Anniversary Jubilee
On sale at: Evernight Publishing
Available at Amazon
To celebrate the release of my debut book, Cait having a scavenger hunt. She will be on several blogs and sites from February 14th-23rd. caitjarrod.com will have the list and links to direct you to the next site.
At each site, Cait will have an excerpt for either Kidnapped Hearts or an unedited excerpt from one of the sequels, Deceptive Heart’s and Mystic Hearts (a novelette).
In each excerpt, one word will be missing.
Write each missing word down in order by how they're listed on caitjarrod.com. The words will form a question and the answer.
On the 23rd or after, go to firstname.lastname@example.org to enter the grand prize raffle by entering the question and answer. A winner will be picked on the 26th.
The winner will receive an autograph print copy of Kidnapped Hearts, a Kidnapped Hearts Coffee Mug, and bookmarks.
Each site has a raffle!
Upcoming releases in 2014: Entangled Love
Kidnapped Hearts, Band of Friends Book 1 excerpt:
She looked at the gun in her hand, drew in a breath, and ran upstairs. Voices yelled, but not Jake’s. What to do?
She had to help. How dumb would that be? More scuffling and she turned the knob. Whenever people did this in the movies, they did it fast to catch whoever off guard, so … with the gun in her good hand, she flung the door open. Pain shot through her shoulder.
One man lay flat on his back on the floor. It wasn’t Jake. Her eyes lifted. A gun pointed back at her.
“Now, this isn’t how I wanted to meet you, Pamela.”
“Leave her alone, Sanjar,” Jake growled.
She shifted her eyes to Jake sitting on the floor, fresh blood dripping from his shoulder. He was shot. Tears filled her eyes. She swallowed and looked back at the man glaring.
“Get the fuck in here,” Sanjar snapped.
She shook her head, her hand shaking and kept the gun pointed at Sanjar’s chest.
Jake shifted uneasily on the floor. “Get out of here, Pamela.”
Tears leaked down her face. No. “I’m done running.” She squeezed the trigger. The bullet hit its target, and Sanjar stumbled, immediately regrouped, and pointed his gun at her.
Jake lunged, throwing his body against Sanjar. They flew out the window.
Pamela ran down the steps and out the door. “Jake!” Sanjar’s body sprawled out on the deck. Bile rose to her throat. She hated to see someone dead, but he deserved it. The son of a bitch! She dodged the body and leaned over the railing. “Jake!” The light from the tower lit the deck close by. She skimmed the other body on the deck. Not Jake.
Where is he?
No, she couldn’t lose him. Not after everything. “No!” Her heart wanted to jump out of her chest.
“Pamela.” She whipped around. ______ was climbing up the ladder.
“It’s Jake. He’s in the water!” Pamela’s voice shook.
Steve’s eyes grew wide.
Jot down the missing word. And don’t forget to check caitjarrod.com for the next site.
Raffle for Cait Jarrod’s ebook copy of Kidnapped Hearts and DC Stone’s High Scandal will run until the 24th
Make sure to enter here
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Holy crow, anyone who knows me knows I went on a total splurge of Lucky Harbor not too long ago, and it was a result of discovering Ms. Shalvis through NetGalley. I gotta say, getting this in my ARC list on NG made me squeal like a two year old little girl who just uncovered a never ending supply of chocolate.
Ben is the brooding, hot alpha man everyone loves to see in a story. And Aubrey is just the chink to throw into the mix that makes this story one you won’t want to put down. He likes quiet. Aubrey doesn’t know the meaning of low-key. He wants peace. Aubrey wants wild parties. And yet, their match up is so perfect it’s downright scary.
I loved watching these two dance around one another, and the whole redemption list was a hilarity—yet very serious—ingredient that made me want to—and actually did—laugh aloud.
The bedroom scenes weren’t overdone and didn’t detract from the story, and to be completely honest, in a world of craziness, this addition to the Lucky Harbor series was just what I needed. I loved seeing previous characters, and I’m looking forward to many more to come. Ms. Shalvis has hit the mark for a great recipe again.
Jill has graciously stopped by today to answer a few questions and share a selected sexy-ass excerpt with us.
(Make sure to click on READ MORE)
Let's get to the good stuff first, shall we?
Between my full-time job, stepping into the role of Vice President for the NJ Romance Writers, and now Chairing the NJRW 2014 Put Your Heart In A Book Conference (slated for October), things have been pretty hectic. So, let me first apologize to my lovely responders for a contest I ran in mid January.
That being said, I have randomly chosen three winners (two for the review contest) one for the Evernight contest that we hopped around with last week. Those winners are as follows:
1. Eva P
2. Janis F.
Evernight Love Scene Hop:
1. Kimberly T.
I'll be reaching out on email to make sure I get the correct addys and get your prizes out in the mail. Congrats, ladies! XOXOXO
Whoo-hoo, lookie here! Thanks for stopping by, I always love the chance to connect with readers and bloggers alike, and there's a great prize to giveaway here with Evernight.
I'll also be giving away an autographed copy of Feral Craving to one lucky responder. All you have to do is respond below with which of your favorite love songs goes with the scene below (please include your email address, too) for your chance to win!
Leaning back against the counter, Bari took in Mackenzie’s kitchen. The white counters gleamed under the soft light, and reflections danced through the air as their shadows bounced off of the
stainless steel appliances. The kitchen cabinets wrapped around the western walls in an elbow shape, and marking the center stood a silver sink. Bari could actually picture Mackenzie, in his mind, standing at that sink and watching Byron playing outside through the large window lining that wall. If one were to turn while standing at that sink, one would immediately see the large kitchen island that stood as a focal point in the middle of the room.
Bari watched as she moved around with confidence and ease. As Mackenzie finished with the coffee, Bari took the mug from her hands and wrapped his palm around the smooth surface. Mackenzie turned to him, leaning against the counter, and took a sip, watching him over the rim
of her cup. There were so many things to say, so many things he wanted to explain; yet now, when he wanted to talk, Bari found he was at a loss for words. Nothing would come so instead he watched as she brought her mug down from her lips and swiped her tongue across the dark pink skin. Bari followed the motion of her tongue, entranced with the urge to taste her lips. It was strong, one he had to tamp down. As much as he wanted it, this wasn’t the time.
He promised himself he wouldn’t seduce her, made a silent promise to Mackenzie he wouldn’t hurt her again. He saw the hurt hovering in her eyes and accepted he had been the bastard who put it there. Goddammit.
You’re such a good little Samaritan.
“He’s beautiful, Mac.”
Mackenzie nodded. “Yes. He’s my world.”
“He has your hair.”
“But it’s your color.”
“Is it?” Bari paused, tilted his head in thought. “His eyes…”
“They’re my father’s.”
Mackenzie glanced up, her mouth gaped open in shock. “I thought your dad’s eyes were brown?”
Bari shook his head. “Not my adoptive father’s, Mac. My birth father. He had the same gun-metal gray eyes.”
"I can’t begin to understand what’s going through your mind right now. What I can understand is that you probably have about a million and one questions, Mac. While I may not be one who is used to others asking so much of me, I’m willing to give you your chance to ask what you need to and will remain completely honest with you on what I can and cannot handle." That brought another thing to mind. "In fact, Mac, if there is anything I do that you can't handle, you just say the word. We clear?"
“What if I’d rather not talk about the past, Bari?”
He drew his brows down, a frown pulling at his mouth. “Then what do you want to discuss, Mac?”
Mackenzie studied him for a few moments, her mug sitting between her hands and the ticking of a clock the only sound. Hell, he had been through classes to evade interrogations with torture and yet a look, silence, and her eyes had him squirming.
You’re bad ass, bro.
Very slowly, very deliberately Mackenzie set down her mug and turned toward him, stepping forward and right up against his body. His hand holding the mug was pushed aside by hers and guided to the counter before she leaned up on her toes and brushed her lips, feather soft, over his.
Mackenzie held his hand at the counter, curling her fingers around his as an electric current pulsed through them both.
Shock and pure, unadulterated lust pooled deep in his gut. Bari sucked in a sharp breath at the first press of her lips and shook with the amount of force it was taking to hold him back as she paused and waited for his reaction. Fuck—this was all he dreamed of for years but now felt unsure of how much to push. His mind pinged off about a dozen warning bells. Watching her response carefully, he brushed his lips on Mackenzie’s, tempting, enticing her to part her lips, and she did. His tongue darted out, licking the seam of her lips slowly, tasting her. He heard Mackenzie’s breath catch, felt her lips part on a sigh and took advantage, plunging his tongue
deep inside her mouth. Her taste assailed him, gripped him, and entranced him to continue. He kept the kiss slow and cautious, not wanting to push her, and gave in to the temptation she offered: a sweet sip of Mackenzie Walters.
His tongue guided over hers, caressed and curled around it. He leaned in to her, pulling his hand from the mug, and palmed her face, deepening the kiss, unable to get enough of her. Something primitive took over. Something deep inside craved her more than should be possible. He was a drowning man in a sea full of water. So damn thirsty.
Mackenzie moaned, and Bari swallowed it with his mouth, answered with a low growl. His hands left her face, guided down the length of her neck before rolling across her shoulders and down her back. He wanted to mold her, wanted to trace and learn every curve, every dip of her
body with his hands before retracing it all with his mouth. He wanted so much, yet not enough, to give and take, to conquer and plunge.
Dropping his hands to her slender waist, he curved them over her enticing rear and squeezed her body tight to his as he rose from the stool he was sitting on at the center island. His cock strained in his pants, begging to be set free.
Down, boy. is hips rolled, the action intentionally slow, and as another groan escaped her, he caught it with his mouth. Lifting up, he palmed her rear and turned, setting her on the counter as he stepped between her legs. She tasted of heaven and home, of apple and spices, of the
sea and sky; so many different flavors, all identified to that of his Mackenzie. His muscles coiled tight, his need hammering nails in the coffin of his restraint.
Mackenzie broke her mouth from his with a gasp, and she groaned as his mouth trailed down her neck, nipping and suckling. The sound was as sweet as sugar would be on his tongue.
“Bari, don’t hold back.”
An answering growl, a labored groan. Bari’s hands hooked under her thighs and pulled her closer as he bent her body back on the counter. She wrapped her legs around his waist and curled her body to his like someone hanging on for their life. His mouth came back up to hers,
and as he captured her lips, he heard a tortured sigh.
“Mackenzie.” The sigh came from him.
Dishes clattered as he swiped them across the counter. Bari hovered above Mackenzie, his hands roaming with frantic movements before he dipped his hand beneath her shirt to seek skin. Under his palm she was so damn soft, like velvet, so warm to his touch. Warmth he yearned for on a cold night. He wanted to brand and possess her. The surge of it shocked him. Bari pulled back and stared down at her. Heavy-lidded eyes stared up at him, unblinking and heavy with anticipation. His hand paused just under the swell of her breast, and his fingers moved back and forth in a teasing caress, just barely brushing the sensitive skin.
“Mackenzie, I’m not going to be able to stop until you tell me to. You understand?” His voice sounded thick, guttural.
She answered by raising her head and pulling him down to her seeking lips. Heat pooled low in his stomach as his hips rolled against hers, eliciting a gasp as he rubbed right against her sex.
His hand brushed under her bra, wrapped around her breast. She felt like heaven, silk, sweet temptation. Mackenzie moaned into his mouth and pressed her hips up to meet his in a primal movement as old as time, mimicking the movements of his tongue in her mouth with her body.
Mackenzie’s entire body went rigid at the sound of Byron’s voice.