Book Highlight: Return (Awakened Fate Book 3)

Title: Return

AuthorSkye Malone 

Series: Awakened Fate (Book Three)

Genre: Young Adult Paranormal Romance

Publisher: Wildflower Isle

Publication Date: October 6, 2014

Cover Designer: Karri Klawiter

For Chloe, the ocean was supposed to mean safety and for a time, it almost did. She overcame the Sylphaen’s drugs. She discovered an unforeseen attraction to Zeke, one that he shares for her. A life underwater seemed possible, until she learned that nothing was as it appeared.

After an unspeakable betrayal shattered everything she thought she knew about Zeke’s world, she and Zeke have fled the ocean for the one place Chloe never expected to want to go.

Home.

But the challenge of living as a mermaid over a thousand miles from the ocean isn’t the only problem facing her. Home has changed. Enemies are waiting, ones she never saw coming. Her little Kansas town is full of surprises.

Including Noah, the guy she left behind.

 
“…do it in Jeri’s old room.”
Earl’s words filtered through the cotton stuffing in my head, barely making sense.
“Yeah, well, seemed fitting.” He paused. “Listen, Richard, I called you as a courtesy, on account of how you said one got away from you yesterday. But it took me an hour after the girl collapsed to get the boy to finally conk out, and with that damn scum-sucker metabolism of theirs, you know I can’t promise either of ‘em will be down for long. You and your boys want any part of this, you better hurry up and get here.”
Alarm struggled through me, weighed down by an exhaustion that wanted to smother my mind back into sleep. Scum-sucker? He…
“Hang on,” Earl said as though interrupting someone. “One of them ain’t breathing the same as they were.”
My heart began to pound harder while I fought to open my eyes. Breathing? He sounded so far away. How could he hear anyone breathing?
Footsteps clunked on the hardwood floor. Light pierced the blackness around me as I managed to lift my eyelids. I was on the bed, facing the doorway. In the window seat, Zeke was slumped, his head resting on the wall. The room was dark around us, though the hall light was on.
Earl came to the door. In one hand, he held a phone to his ear, and at the sight of me, he made an angry noise.
“What’d I tell you? The girl’s awake.”
He dropped the phone onto the window seat as he strode toward me, and all my dull commands to my muscles couldn’t make my body move. Striding past me, he retrieved something from the dresser and then returned with a sports bottle in his hand.
I tried to pull away, but he just reached down and grabbed my head from behind, lifting it toward him. With his teeth, he popped open the top of the bottle and then shoved it into my mouth.
Bitter-tasting liquid flooded my throat. I choked, the drink spewing from my lips, but he just dropped the bottle and clamped an enormous hand over the lower half of my face.
“Swallow,” he ordered.
I stared up at him. His grip tightened on my hair, tugging at my scalp.
“Now.”
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Title: Abide
AuthorSkye Malone 
Series: Awakened Fate (An Awakened Fate
Novella, Awakened Fate #3.5)
Genre: Young Adult Paranormal Romance
PublisherWildflower Isle
Publication Date: November 3, 2014
Cover Designer: Karri Klawiter

Life in her underwater home of Nyciena has always been fun and games to Ina Ociras, until now. Her brothers are missing. Her father is gone. The adventurous party girl is fighting just to keep her family from falling apart, all while avoiding Egan, the guy who committed the one crime she can’t possibly forgive.

But when she receives a message that changes everything, Ina suddenly finds herself embroiled in a conspiracy more horrifying than she could have imagined. One that strikes at the heart of her kingdom, and one that could destroy her family once and for all.

~An Awakened Fate Novella which follows Return, Book Three of the Awakened Fate Series~

The guards took up positions beside me when I left the room and headed for the main hall.
“Princess.”
I tried not to swear, knowing anyone who overheard would only use it as gossip about my current mental state.
But a slew of choice words presented themselves.
This wasn’t fair, I told the universe silently. Not even a little bit.
I glanced back to see Egan swimming down the hall toward me. With his silver scales, dark eyes, and hair so light it seemed like snow even though he was only a year older than me, he looked like a sculptor’s dream, and just as incredible as ever.
It only made me hate him a little bit more. Killing that damn flutter in my stomach would’ve been so much easier if he was ugly.
 
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Skye Malone is a fantasy and paranormal romance author, which means she spends most of her time not-quite-convinced that the magical things she imagines couldn’t actually exist. A Midwestern girl who migrated to the Pacific Northwest, she dreams someday of travelling the world – though in the meantime she’ll take any story that whisks her off to a place where the fantastic lives inside the everyday. She loves strong and passionate characters, complex villains, and satisfying endings that stay with you long after the book is done. An inveterate writer, she can’t go a day without getting her hands on a keyboard, and can usually be found typing away while she listens to all the adventures unfolding in her head.

Skye also writes YA urban fantasy as Megan Joel Peterson and is the author of The Children and the Blood series.

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Book Highlight: Slumber by Christy Sloat

Title: Slumber

Author: Christy Sloat

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

Not all princesses get their happily ever after…

They tell me I killed my boyfriend Phillip in cold blood. I stabbed him twenty one times. I’m only seventeen years old, and I am serving life in Spindle Ridge Asylum for the Criminally Insane.

I don’t remember killing him, so it’s really hard to believe I’m capable of murder. In fact I don’t remember anything before I came to Spindle Ridge, not even my boyfriend.

I can only grasp onto my realistic dreams while the madness of the asylum threatens to pull me under. I dream I’m a beautiful princess and there is an evil faerie named Maleficent who is bent on my destruction. The dreams are the closest thing I have to memories of my life, except they aren’t real.

I’m crazy. I’m not a princess.

They’re the mad illusions of an irrational teenage girl, right?

They’ve assigned me a new doctor, and she says I can trust her, and that she’ll help me see the truth of who I really am.

When she arrived she brought a new patient, Sawyer, who is everything Spindle Ridge isn’t: exciting, mysterious and beautiful. He promises he’s here to rescue me. Trusting either of them frightens me.

Could it be possible that my dreams are more than just the imaginings of a delusional girl? Could they be truth?

 
I woke in the
middle of the night hearing screams fill the air. This was not uncommon at all,
but tonight I wasn’t expecting it. Normally when Adele’s meds are changed, she
wakes screaming that she can’t sleep. Adele’s room is across from mine. She is roughly
in her twenties and I never learned how she ended up here. I try not to talk to
the other patients. I don’t know why it is, but I don’t fit in with these
people. To them I’m the murderer and they tend to think less of me. That’s
fine. I am what they say I am. That’s why I’m here, right?
 They told me I stabbed my boyfriend, Phillip,
but I don’t remember doing it. I actually don’t remember Phillip at all. No
recollection of having been in a relationship either. I must have killed him or
else I wouldn’t be in Spindle Ridge.
Dr. Altman
says that I have to believe that I did it or we will never get anywhere. I’ll
admit it’s hard to believe that these hands could stab a person twenty times.
No matter how I imagined it, it is always hard to believe. 
I sat up
listening hard for the screams. When they came again I noticed they were not
female, they were male. The screams were deeper and reached a longer distance
than Adele’s cries ever could. I wondered if the whole building could hear him.
I pulled my
covers up over my neck and covered my face. I just wanted to sleep and fall
back into the dream I was having. It was beautiful, and if I had my way, I
would stay there forever.
 Wait!
 I sat up fast. Closing my eyes, I tried to
remember the dream to the last second. It wasn’t the same dream as the one’s
prior. This dream was different! This dream was me and a boy.
I never
dreamt of anyone but my parents and the evil woman. The dream’s soft lullaby
came back to me as I remembered where I was.
The smell of
fresh grass came across my senses.
The sky so
blue as I lay on a blanket. I rolled over and saw the face of a boy. He was
everything that Spindle Ridge wasn’t; he was beautiful. He had long, shaggy,
but not unruly, hair that touched his collar. When he smiled at me, he looked
like a boy in love. In love with me.
“Get up you
lazy sack!”
I opened my
eyes and was pulled back into the now. I was forced to leave the dream behind
as I was being pulled out of bed by two nurses.
 

Christy Sloat is a SoCal born girl who resides in New Jersey currently with her husband, two daughters and Sophie her Chihuahua. Christy has embraced the love of reading and writing since her youth and was inspired by her grandmother’s loving support. Christy passes that love of reading, writing, and creativity to her daughters, family, and friends. When you do not find Christy within the pages of a book you can find her being mommy, wife, crafter, and dear friend. She loves adventurous journeys with her friends and can be known to get lost inside a bookstore. Be sure to venture into her Past Lives Series, The Visitor’s Series, and watch for many more exciting things to come.

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Book Highlight: Final Stand by Rose Garcia

Title: Final Stand

Author: Rose Garcia

Series: The Transhuman Chronicles #2

Dominique is still alive after killing Tavion, the Tainted who’s hunted her for lifetimes. Yet her protectors still fear for her life. They force her to flee Houston and abandon the friends she loves. But they can’t protect her from herself. When Dominique starts hearing Tavion’s voice in her head, she realizes that her personal connection to the Tainted still exists. And when her car is ambushed, she discovers another frightening truth—someone close to her is a traitor.

Desperate for answers, Dominique seeks the aid of first lifers Trent and Infiniti. With their help, she hopes to find her new enemy. But things get complicated with Trent when she finally accepts her eternal love for Farrell, and even more complicated when the whispers in her head threaten her loved ones. Determined to live, Dominique decides to make a final stand against the forces that want to end her. For good.

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Excerpt
            Our eyes locked. Like magnets, our bodies leaned in. Even though I had felt a connection
with Trent back in Houston, my mind always took me back to Farrell. But I kept resisting him because he represented a part of me I didn’t know, a part of me that didn’t exist anymore.
            My body trembled. Even though I wanted to be with him, I wasn’t sure if I could trust my emotions. “Farrell, I don’t know if the feelings I have for you are really mine. Or if they’re glimpses of another version of me.”
            He traced the side of my face with his warm fingertips. “It’s you, Dominique. Here. Now.And nobody else. I promise.”
            Desire coursed through my veins, and I knew, without a doubt, he was right. I wanted him. I needed him. In this life. Right now. And I was tired of fighting it. “Farrell,” I whispered.
            He brought his face within inches of mine and stared deep into my eyes before brushing his warm, soft lips against my mouth. Tingles erupted all over my skin. Warmth spread throughout my cold body. He wrapped his strong arms around me and brought me closer. Our kiss was slow and deep. His breath and taste drew me in, and I wished I could melt into him.
            He moved his mouth down to my neck, sprinkling kisses all over me. “I’ve waited so long for this,” he whispered.
            I ran my fingers through his thick hair and moaned. “Oh, Farrell.”
            Footsteps crunched in the distance, killing the moment. We separated fast, pretending like nothing had happened even though everything had happened.
           I was his, and he was mine.
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About the Author
Rose Garcia is a lawyer turned writer who’s always been fascinated by science fiction and fantasy. From a very young age, she often had her nose buried in books about other-worlds, fantastical creatures, and life and death situations. More recently she’s been intrigued by a blend of science fiction and reality, and the idea that some supernatural events are, indeed, very real. Fueled by her imagination, she created The Transhuman Chronicles–a series of books about people who have overcome human limitations.
Rose lives in Houston with her husband and two kids. You can visit Rose at www.rosegarciabooks.com
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Giveaway

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Book Highlight: Game On by Collette West

Title: Game On

Author: Collette West

Genre: Romance

Publication: October 17th, 2014

Pitching phenom Bruce “Jilly” Gillette has a hard time talking to women. His hulking presence of tattoos and muscles is what makes him an intimidating closer on the mound, yet off the field, he’s painfully shy, uncomfortable in his own skin.

Desperate to revamp his loner image, the New York Kings hold a dream date contest, granting the lucky winner a night on the town with their surly reliever, doing whatever it takes to force Jilly out of his comfort zone.

Hailey Halpert enters the contest on a whim, looking for answers as to why her high school relationship with Jilly hit the skids. Now she’s a popular romance author writing under a pen name, and her reappearance in Jilly’s life is no accident. It turns out that her novels are all about the sexy players on the Kings, and Jilly has no clue that he’s about to become her new leading man.

 

          His clumsy attempt to show his feelings started off as something beautiful, something I’ll never forget, and I want him to know that.
          “Jilly…” I say tentatively, and his eyes instantly snap to mine. “The way you held me all through the night, felt so…right. The way you touched me, running your hand up and down my arm, and later when you were stroking the inside of my palm with your thumb. God…it felt so good. You didn’t have to say anything. I could feel it.”
          “You don’t know how long I’d wanted to do that,” he whispers softly, his face turning red.
I smile, breaking eye contact because I’m completely overwhelmed. He’s saying the words I’ve always wanted him to say. This is the talk we should’ve had a long time ago, and I want him to know everything that’s in my heart.
          I meet his eyes again. “What made it even better was that…you didn’t have to touch me in all of those places…any other guy would have to make me want you. Your fingers on my arm were enough. I was in agony being so close to you and not being able to do anything more. I wanted you to take me somewhere, anywhere, to finish what you started—upstairs to one of the bedrooms, outside on the porch, in the back seat of the car—so I could kiss you everywhere I wanted to—but you didn’t.”
          He’s staring at me so intently that I’m afraid to go on, but I have to. I’m almost there.
          “I know neither of us got much sleep that night because all I could feel was your hand caressing my body from my neck to my fingertips. But the next morning, as soon as it got light, you couldn’t wait to get out of there. You started muttering to yourself about being late for something, propped me up on the side of the couch, and left me there. You didn’t even say goodbye. Do you have any idea what that felt like?”
          He meets my eyes for a second before looking away. “If you were tightly wound, you can imagine how I felt. You don’t remember what you were doing right before that, do you? How you were running your leg up and down mine? Your knee at my—” He stops, burying his head in his hands. “I had to get out of there because I—”
          I swallow, realizing now why he did what he did.
          “But I could’ve…” I stammer. “Helped you…with that.”
          He pushes himself away from the table, and I’m afraid he’s going to leave me sitting there all alone again. “I didn’t know what to do. I—”
          “Jilly, I was yours for the taking.”
          “Are you still?” His gaze burns into me.
          I look into his soulful, brown eyes, which are holding nothing back from me. He’s taking a giant leap for me now, even if he couldn’t do it back when we were kids. Things could’ve turned out so differently if he had, but here we are, in New York City, sitting across a table from each other, four years older, four years wiser.
          I’d thought he was lost to me forever, never to be a part of my life again. But he’s here, offering me a second chance at what I’ve always wanted—to be with him.

Collette West grew up as somewhat of a jock-nerd hybrid. Entering the world three weeks premature, her dad nearly missed her birth because he had seats behind the dugout for a sold-out, highly-anticipated match-up between two of baseball’s biggest rivals. Not to be outdone, her book-loving mom taught her how to read by the time she was three. A love of the game coupled with an appreciation for the written word were instilled in Collette’s impressionable brain from a young age. No wonder her characters believe in the philosophy: sports + romance = a little slice of heaven.

Splitting her time between the Pocono Mountains and Manhattan, Collette indulges her inner fangirl by going to as many games as she can from hockey to baseball and downloading every sports romance novel in existence onto her iPad. When she’s not clicking away on her laptop, she enjoys walking her dog in Central Park, satisfying her caffeine craving at the Starbucks on Broadway and keeping an eye out for Mr. Right. But above all, she loves dishing with her readers. Email her at collette_west@yahoo.com.

She is the author of NIGHT GAMES, GAME CHANGER and GAME ON.

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Book Highlight: The White Door by Christy Sloat

Title: The White Door

Author: Christy Sloat

Genre: Young Adult

Series: The Visitors Series, Book 3

Publication: March 3rd, 2014

“When I first moved here I was still a girl who cherished the normality of teen life. Now, after being here a year I had come to love a boy who was both strong and courageous. I made real friendships that would last even after death. The selfish girl my grandmother warned me of becoming had vanished. A girl who stood tall, with the powers to see the dead and help those in need, appeared in her place.”

In Brylee’s world, nothing is normal. She sees and speaks with the dead and, at seventeen years old, she already has a full plate. She’s in her senior year of high school and college is just around the corner, but only if she learns to control her gifts and survive in the land of the living.

She has succeeded in ridding her boyfriend, Ephraim, from the Brown family curse, but, in the end, her best friend loses her life. Now a whole slew of new problems present itself and, like always, Brylee is tempted to run for the hills. With Ephraim at her side, she must come to grips with the reality that she is not an average girl and she never will be.

What will happen when the town turns on her? Or, better yet, when a body is unearthed in her backyard? The choices that Brylee must make will determine whether she has a future or nothing at all.

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     I raised my hand to excuse myself to the bathroom and Miss Hailey obliged. I sped walked to the girl’s room as Kayla skipped behind me. I pushed open a stall and threw my hands up in the air. “What the heck Kayla? Here, at school?”
     She laughed.
     “Seriously? I know something’s up, but why not wait until after school?”
     She leaned against the stall and sighed. “I told you things are weird with me lately. I don’t know what’s happening but I can feel a change coming. I… I…” Her mad rush to speak was suddenly interrupted by a choking sound coming from her mouth.
     “Kayla!” I rushed to her and my hands went through her body. She wasn’t solid like normal. Something was wrong! Kayla had always felt like flesh and blood to me. Never like a ghost.
     Suddenly her mouth opened and water poured out onto my feet, splashing my shoes and legs. I still tried but failed to help her. She was choking on water and, if I wasn’t mistaken, she was drowning. I was helpless and didn’t know what to do. Then before I could come up with an answer she uttered one word, “Diary.”

Christy Sloat is a SoCal born girl who resides in New Jersey currently with her husband, two daughters and Sophie her Chihuahua. Christy has embraced the love of reading and writing since her youth and was inspired by her grandmother’s loving support. Christy passes that love of reading, writing, and creativity to her daughters, family, and friends. When you do not find Christy within the pages of a book you can find her being mommy, wife, crafter, and dear friend. She loves adventurous journeys with her friends and can be known to get lost inside a bookstore. Be sure to venture into her Past Lives Series, The Visitor’s Series, and watch for many more exciting things to come.

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Book Highlight: Drowning by Rachel Firasek

Title: Drowning

Author: Rachel Firasek

Series: Tears of Sin (#1)

Pages: 263

Published: October 26th, 2013 by Naedge Publishing

*Drowning is a New Adult Contemporary Romance suited for 18+ due to some violence, language, and sexual content* 

“I dare you.”

Those words would change adrenaline junkie, Alice Harrison’s life forever. She’s a party girl that doesn’t believe in love until she meets a man that only writes about it.

Seth James escaped his overbearing father and moved into one of the James family’s vacant condos, hoping to create the music he loves in peace. But the fragile calm he’s envisioned shatters when a tiny woman with a world full of energy bounces out of the elevator and nearly takes him out.

With the patience of a saint, Seth seeks the dark that keeps Alice from enjoying life. He challenges her to exorcise the demons in her past in order to discover the true meaning of love. But when the walls fall down, the hidden deceptions will bare the ugly truth about a woman drowning in sorrow and a man who may not know how to be her hero.

In the hall, arms laden with musical equipment, four large and totally hot guys fill the space—Seth James leading the pack. He stops, drops the cymbal dangling from an index finger, and stares. His too bright gaze travels down my scantily, and very sweaty, clad body and back up. When our eyes meet, he grins. “Come to help?”

“No.” I have no idea what makes me do it, but I snatch his cymbal off the floor and carry it into his apartment. I’m asking for trouble, but can’t seem to stop myself. They follow me inside, jaws still slack. Okay, so I’m cute, but not worthy of jaws dropping. I plop it down on his couch and rush back to the door. Taking on Seth doesn’t scare me, but a crew of hotties is a little much.

His strong fingers wrap around my shoulder before I make it through the walkway. It’s not controlling or holding me back. His hand is simply resting on me. “Hey, thanks. I’m sorry if we…uh…interrupted your day.”

His words sound sincere and slightly slurred, and I can’t find it in my heart to be bitchy to the first guy in a long time that has only shown me kindness. I sigh and pivot to face him. “It’s not me I’m worried about. My sister is asleep.”

He glances at his watch and frowns.

“She’s recovering from an accident. So, if you don’t mind, keep it down in the halls.”

He leans forward. “Will do and I’m sorry.”

When he enters my personal space, my heart speeds up. His eyes stare into mine. I feel this incredible connection, like he knows my pain. Like he can see my guilt.

The distance between us seems to be shrinking, and I’m not sure if it’s me shuffling closer or him.

He snags the zipper on my jacket and runs it up and down. “Is she going to be okay?”

I pluck at a button on his shirt and glance up. “Eventually.”

His friends form a half-moon circle around him and gape at me. I flick a glance at each of them. They all have a very different style of dress, which only raises more questions about the man in front of me. “Am I the first girl they’ve ever seen?”

Blondie, with the coal lined eyes, on the left snickers. “In Seth’s apartment? Hell, yes.”

Seth elbows him, but grins.

The tall guy in a kind of hot-nerd ensemble leans over and shakes my hand. “Deacon. Would you like a beer?”

I eye the leering men again. “It looks like you started without me, and I’m not into gang-bangs.” I disengage the overlong hand play with the nerd and back away from the group. “G., I’ll catch you later.”

“Hey, wait. I’ll walk you back over.”

The hotties chuckle, high-five, and rib Seth as we walk toward the hall. He shuts the door to their gazes and catches my hand before I can cross back to my apartment. “Hey, are you going to tell me your name?”

“Nah, this is more fun.”

“Why?”

“I think you’re used to having your way.”

He smiles. “Maybe.” He leans against his door and crosses his arms. His smile slips into a smug grin I’d seen on so many rich boys in this city. He thinks he has me. “I’d like to have my way with you.”

He’s quite the talker when he’s sauced. Good to know. It’s nice to see his thoughts. “That’s the beer talking.” I step close, arch up on tip-toe, and tap a finger to his slightly parted lips. “A few hours ago, you didn’t have much to say. I’m okay with keeping this awkward tension between us. It’s all we’ll ever have.”

He scowls at that and twists the knob back to his apartment. “Whatever.”

Mission accomplished. I’d succeeded in pissing him off. If he stayed mad at me, then we could squash this weird attraction that we obviously both feel.

I grin. “Bye, G.”

His brows dip low, and I shove the door behind me, sagging against it. My breath swooshes out from between my clenched teeth. Damn, he is going to be trouble. I feel it all the way to my pinky toe.

A soft knock against my back drives home the point. I twirl and open the door before he disturbs Molly—or maybe because I’m not ready to share him with her yet. “What?”

He tucks a hand into the waistband of my shorts and hauls me into the hall, pulling my door shut behind me. “Where did you get that?” His gaze lingers on the small bump decorating my forehead.

I reach up and touch the sore knot. “Oh, I fell.”

“How?” He raises his free hand and traces the swelling.

I don’t even feel the careful prodding. No, my concentration is solely focused on the fingers tucked inside my shorts and only inches away from becoming way too familiar with me. “Um…I was doing yoga when you guys came down the hall.”

“And?” He tugs me closer. His thumb rakes a small path below my belly button.

Oh my. “Uh…I fell out of…of…my pose and banged my head on the floor.”

His eyes darken and those beautiful lips part. I want to snake my tongue across the bottom one to find out if it is as soft as it looks.

He winces and lowers his eyes to mine. “So this is my fault?”

I grab onto his wandering hand and pull it free of my shorts. If I didn’t, I’d be asking him for a wall orgasm in less than two minutes and random teasing and fleeing was a no go for me now. “No. It was an accident. Lighten up, G.”

“I don’t want to cause you pain.”

Wow, that feels like a loaded proclamation. “Okay. Well, keep the noise down, and we should be good.”

He drops the hand that had been rubbing away my bruise. Funny, I’d totally forgotten it. “I don’t want to cause you pain. It’s a personal thing.” A deep shudder races over him, and for some reason, I don’t think he is with me anymore.

“You didn’t. I’m fine.” I lift a hand and cup the side of his face, bringing his gaze to mine. It is the gentlest moment I’ve ever had with a man, and we’ve just met. “I’m not sure what this is, but I think I should go inside.”

He glances down the corridor, takes a deep breath, and nods. “Yes, you should.”

“Go play with your friends. Be men or whatever that means, and I’ll go back to my yoga.” I was going to need it after this.

He groans and drops his head back, his hint of an Adam’s Apple bobbing down the column of his neck, begging for my tongue to taste him there. “Did you have to bring that back to mind?”

I grin. “What? Me all hot and sweaty in contorted positions? Do you like that?”

He groans, and one side of his mouth slants up. “I have things to do and don’t need no-named neighbors distracting me.”

Rachel Firasek spends her days daydreaming of stories and her nights putting the ideas to ink. She has spent a dull life following the rules, meeting deadlines, and toeing the line, but in her made up worlds, she can let the wild side loose. Her wonderful husband and three children support her love of the written word and only ask for the occasional American Idol or Swamp People quality hour.

She has a philosophy about love. It must devastate or it isn’t truly worth loving. She hopes that you all find your devastating love and cling to it with all your heart!

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Book Highlight: My Date From Hell by Tellulah Darling

Title: My Date From Hell by Tellulah Darling

Genre: Young Adult

Series: The Blooming Goddess Trilogy, #2

Sophie Bloom’s junior year has been a bit of a train wreck. After the world’s greatest kiss re-awakened Sophie’s true identity as Persephone (Goddess of Spring and Savior of Humanity), she fought her dragon-lady guidance counselor to the death, navigated mean girl Bethany’s bitchy troublemaking, and dealt with the betrayal of her backstabbing ex, Kai (sexy Prince of Darkness). You’d think a girl could catch a break.

Yeah, right.

With Zeus stepping things up, it’s vital that Sophie retrieve Persephone’s memories and discover the location of the ritual to stop Zeus and Hades. So when Aphrodite strikes a deal that can unlock Sophie’s pre-mortal past, what choice does the teen goddess have but to accept?

The mission: stop media mogul Hermes from turning Bethany into a global mega-celebrity. The catch? Aphrodite partners Sophie and Kai to work together … and treat this suicide mission as a date. Which could work out for Sophie’s plan to force Kai to admit his feelings for her–if she doesn’t kill him first.

Add to that the fact that BFF Theo’s love life and other BFF Hannah’s actual life are in Sophie’s hands, and suddenly being a teenager—even a godlike one—seems a bit like … well, hell. Whatever happened to dinner and a movie?

The YA romantic comedy/Greek mythology fireworks continue to fly in My Date From Hell. Love meets comedy with a whole lot of sass in book two of this teen fantasy romance series. Breaking up is easy; dating is deadly.

Aphrodite
pointed her gun at me again, kind of casually. “Your problem is you’re too hung
up on the past. You gotta move forward with yer life.”
I heard
Hannah give a smothered laugh.
“You got
this cutie pie in love with ya, and instead of enjoying his company, all you do
is whine.” With a quick flick, Aphrodite opened the cylinder to reload.
“He’s not
in love,” I said.
She peered
at Kai. “Whattya talkin’ about? Sure he is. Everyone knows Kyrillos
loves Persephone.”
“I’m Sophie,” I ground out.
She waved
the gun around. “Ya ya. That too.”
That too?
I took a deep breath, folded my fingers over my palms and looked slightly to the
left of her in case I accidentally started blasting. Didn’t want to go down in history
as the girl who killed the Goddess of Love.
“Nope. It’s
just desire,” I said with faked calm. “Kai is so resistant to the idea of being
in love with me that your arrows don’t work. Besides which, when he actually does
fall so hard for me that he doesn’t know which way is up, I want him to know he
chose that of his own free will. That he chose me.” I threw him a sweet smile.
“Chose you?”
Kai got this look of “have we had this conversation before?” on his face. My smile
got tight.
Aphrodite
scooped up a saclike pink purse laying on the ground. She rooted around in
it. “Desire is part of romantic love, silly,” she said to me.
She pulled
out a handful of bullets and dumped them in Festos’ hurriedly outstretched hands
before turning back to Kai. She gestured with the still-open chambered revolver
toward him. “Your body knows what’s what. Stop fighting it.”
Kai glowered
at her.
She laughed
it off, reloading. “And you,” Aphrodite said to me, as she plucked more bullets
from Festos’ hand to load into the chamber. “Yer just as bad with your own issues.”
She couldn’t
know about my insecurities around Persephone could she? Aphrodite narrowed her eyes
at me.
I gulped.
Aphrodite
shot me a look of disgust and popped the final bullets into the chambers. She gestured
at each of us in turn with one pink, sparkly manicured finger. “I’m gonna start
gettin’ real mad about how youse is all dealin’ with love.”
“There’s
a whole bunch of drags around here where love is concerned,” Festos agreed.
“Thanks
so much for inviting him along,” Theo said to me.
I grimaced
an apology at Theo, then shot back at Festos, “Seems there’s a whole bunch of dogs
here, too.” I looked between him and Kai.
“Oh don’t
forget Pierce,” Festos replied cheerfully. “He’s a total mimbo.” “He is not,” Hannah
defended. “He’s pure love.”
Aphrodite
threw her a fond smile. “I like you, girlie.” “Love in name, hormones in game,”
Theo countered. “Look at us all in agreement,” Festos replied.
“No, because
you’re talking about lust,” I protested.
“Lust is
pretty good too,” Aphrodite said, “but it ain’t nothin’ like the real thing.” She
clicked the cylinder into place and looked at me. “We got a deal? You’ll get Jack
to kill the campaign?”
“You’ll
undo the love thing?” I asked.
“Nope. You
could do with a little love in your life. Kyrillos is obviously brimming with love
for ya now,” she ignored Kai’s snort, “so you’re gonna enjoy it.”
“Meaning
what?” I asked.
“A date,”
Kai piped up. “I’d say I’m ready now.” He arched an eyebrow as if to say “ball’s
in your court.”
“I think
it’s a great idea,” I slid my arm around his waist and pressed myself up against
his side.
A look of
surprise flashed across his face. “Perfect.”
I could
outdate him any place, any time. I brightened. This was going to be fun. The touching
part wasn’t a downside either.
“The fate
of the world does dee-pend on you loving each other,” Aphrodite said. “So, good.
We’ll start with a date.”
“Still say
it’s a euphemism,” Festos burst out. “And Kai doesn’t date.”
Kai snaked
his arm around my waist before pressing his fingertips into my hip. “Never wanted
to before. Sophie’s the exception.”
“The euphemistic
exception?” Festos asked. “Shut up,” Kai and I fired at him in tandem.
Festos took
it in stride, waggling his eyebrows cheerfully at Theo who pretended to look disapproving
but totally wasn’t. Even Hannah didn’t bother to hide her smile.
“Only thing
is,” I told Aphrodite, “I have to be back at school by Sunday morning. I have a
meeting I can’t miss. So I’ll have to get this thing with Jack done quickly to have
time for the date.”
“Going together
to find Hermes is the date.” Aphrodite looked at me like I was an idiot.
“You two need as much together time as possible.”
No way.
I needed all my wits about me to handle Kai. Something that couldn’t happen if I
had to track down Hermes at the same time. I tried a new tactic. “A date involves
dinner and a movie. Something romantic. Finding Hermes hardly counts.”
She pinned
me in her gaze. “Had so miny of them, Miz Expert? All a date is, is two people spendin’
time to deepen their attraction.”
“Or kill
it,” Hannah piped up.
Aphrodite
scrunched up her nose. “Huh?”
“There are
far more first dates than second,” Hannah explained. “Which means that after spending
time, those people realized they were not a match.”
“What she
said,” I seconded.
Aphrodite
narrowed her eyes at Hannah. “I don’t get ya. You talk like that but you’re so brim
up with love.”
“I’m a confounding
enigma,” Hannah replied cheerfully.
Aphrodite
threw her hands up. “Enough’a this nonsense. You’ll go together to find Hermes.
And you’ll be date-like doin’ it.”
That sounded
like a threat.
“Almost
like you planned it that way,” I said to Kai.
His smile
grew wider as he gave my waist a squeeze. “Told you I get what I want. Feel
free to let that sink in.”

Tellulah Darling

noun

1. YA romantic comedy author because her first kiss sucked and she’s compensating.

2. Alter ego of former screenwriter.

3. Sassy minx.

Geeks out over: cool tech.

Squees for: great storytelling.

Delights in: fabulous conversation.

Writes about: where love meets comedy. Awkwardness ensues.

Sassy girls. Swoony boys. What could go wrong?

 

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