Book Reviews now accepted through The Book Escape E-zine. Please contact Jennifer at: thebookescapemag@gmail.com with your blurb, release date, author name, and publisher. Thank you!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

A Giveaway and a Lesson with Ken Charles


USE AND ABUSE OF EUPHEMISMS IN EROTICA

It’s a terrible thing when times just pass you by. I was all prepared to write a scathing guest blog about Paypal and it’s chilling effect on erotica. Then Paypal retreated, and another hot topic fizzled. So now you’re thinking something along the lines of “That’s a pretty friggin’ lame way to
start a guest post.” Actually, it was a calculated device to allow me to write “friggin'”. Let’s get down and talk about euphemisms. Ah, that got your attention. Now you’re thinking more along the lines of “Copulating A!”

Euphemisms are an essential part of the erotica author’s literary arsenal. Repetition and redundancy are major turn-offs for the average reader (and a corresponding gluteal pain for an editor). No erotica author should attempt to create multiple sex scenes in a story without access
to a thesaurus.
Biology 101--okay, class, the fundamentals of a sex act are pretty uniform whether the scene is M/F, M/M, F/F or F/M, or various combinations or permutations thereof. Essentially, at some point in each sex scene, one or more of some sort of rhabdoid projection is going to be inserted into one or more openings and passageways. Euphemisms allow the author to return to that same refrain over and over again without boring the readers. They also help the readers connect with concepts with which they are intellectually capable of comprehending, but are otherwise tempermentally indisposed to grasp.
Like any other word choices, the choice of euphemisms can enhance a scene or destroy it. The author must consider the connotations of a particular euphemism as well as its meaning, and determine whether it is well suited both to the characters and the nature of the scene. Is it likely that your character would use the particular word? Does it fit in context? For example, according to “The Etymology of Slang Sexual Terms”, http://www.takeourword.com/pt.html, the word “pussy” referred to women as early as the 16th century, but didn’t take on a sexual meaning until the 19th century. Accordingly, a modern reader would understand the author’s intent if the naughty, 17th century duchess invited the knight to “lick her pussy”, but it would be anachronistic at best, and would probably ruin the scene for a reader with a penchant for history.
Similarly, certain common euphemisms come with highly emotional, negative connotations, such as the dreaded four letter “C” word. Inserting such a word into a sex scene can lose some readers outright.
Euphemisms apply to both things and actions. Characters can mate, screw, couple, fornicate, schtupp, do the nasty, and even fuck when all they really want to do is engage in sexual intercourse. Her breasts are not only like two young roes, they’re also like “juicy, juicy mangos”
(Bend It Like Beckham, inter alia). Things need not actually be as they appear in the mirror of written text.

Case Study: Setting -- A bedroom. Male is sitting watching Female undress. Female slowly lifts her dress, revealing no panties. Aaaaaaand, action!

“He was awestruck by the sight of her pulchritudinous mons veneris.”
Cut! What is the author trying to convey? The male’s focus obviously is on a particular portion of the female’s anatomy as viewed from the front. Before we move on to the next slide, let’s try a slightly different approach. Aaaaaaand, action!

“He was gobsmacked at the sight of her gorgeous pussy.”

Ah, now the reader is engaged. (The three of you who are thinking about the Savannah kittens you saw on Animal Planet over the weekend are excused.) The reader understands where the male’s focus lies, and already is anticipating what will ensue because of the generally positive and titillating connotations of the euphemism “pussy”. Now substitute the four letter “C” word for “pussy”. For some readers for whom there are strongly negative connotations for the word, the entire scene is ruined.

Euphemisms abound, but when the need arises, the author can always create a new one. In Sex
Tales from West County: Billy’s Tale, I wrote a scene in which Missy is riding Billy cowboy style, while singing to herself a song with a line about “gigging frogs". Billy assumes that “frogs" is a euphemism for “breasts". See the excerpt below (guess what a “turgid rod” is a euphemism for?). Whether replacing an anatomical structure or a physical act, a well turned euphemism can keep a scene rolling without reducing it to the level of a freshman biology lecture.
Thanks for having me as a guest on Labelle Books and letting me ramble. I don’t get out much in polite society. Of course, if you wanted someone polite, you wouldn’t have invited me.
***
Ken Charles is the darker and naughtier alter ego of Charlie Kenmore, the author of Earth Angel and other Seven Realms Tales, several screenplays and numerous short stories. He started writing corporal punishment (CP) erotica after coming home frustrated one night after being stood up on a first date. Originally intent on writing a “WHACK-OUCH-WHACK-OUCH” tale just to vent some spleen, Ken's plan was foiled when the story actually took on a life of its own and developed a plot line. It became one of Ken's most popular stories. Since then, Ken has taken CP from the bedroom to outer space. Whether set forth in flash fiction or in a novella, rubifaction is guaranteed.

He is a 53 year old professional from St. Louis, Missouri with one very significant other, two grown kids, and two cats. He enjoys collecting books, art and cooking. An avid garage sale hunter, he is still searching for an oil painting by Edouard Leon Cortes (or anything from the Drip and Drool School like Pollack or Rothko that can be sold so he can buy his Cortes). You can find Ken Charles on Facebook, and Charlie Kenmore on Facebook and at the Seven Realms Earthside Communications Center, http://charliekenmore.blogspot.com/.

5.0 out of 5 stars Makes me want to misbehave!!, February 15, 2012 By Summer Daniels
"A great mixture of narrative and sizzling sex, this well written piece does not disappoint.”
The Black Pearl's review
Feb 21, 12

"Ken Charles is a great author with the ability to change the 'voice' of his stories....By far, the star in this short story collection was Psyche and MetaPhysic --absolute genius. The story's execution was brilliant!”
Coming soon:

Venus and Marks
CP Sci-Fi Tales Across Time and Space
EXCERPT FROM SEX TALES FROM WEST COUNTY: BILLY’S TALE
(Suggested background music--http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0aA4seB6ou8)
Missy swept her tongue back the other way and proceeded up the shaft. When she reached the top, she put him back in her mouth and bobbed up and down several times to ensure that he was as hard as he was going to get.
She lifted her head clear, but continued stroking him with her left hand. She reached over to the side table and the remaining condom. She ripped it open with her teeth, then put the condom in her mouth. She leaned over and slid the condom over his turgid rod, using only her mouth.
Missy clambered over him, faced and straddled him, and slowly impaled herself, singing softly to herself something like “Dum-de-de-dum-de-de-dum”. When he was fully inside her, she stopped and enjoyed the sensation of being filled. Billy reached up and squeezed her breasts. She closed her eyes, and began posting up and down, slowly and rhythmically to the music in her head. She continued to mouth the words silently, but occasionally gave voice to some of the lyrics, something about going into the city to save a horse.
She continued to post. Each time she started down, Billy thrust upwards to meet her halfway. He rolled her nipples back and forth, then mashed her full breasts together. He pinched the nipples. Missy gasped and smiled and said something about gigging frogs.
“I'll gig your frogs, baby.” He pinched her nipples again. “Frogs. That's a new one to me. Jugs, boobs, honkers, tomatoes, melons, tits, knockers, sure. Frogs? Nope. That one is new.”
She giggled, then went back to mouthing her lyrics. She continued steadily lifting herself up, then
slamming back down. Her breathing quickened. Billy squeezed her breasts together, did his first abdominal crunch of the day, and licked both of her nipples.
“What? What?”
He dropped back against the pillow. “What?”

When she didn't answer, Billy reluctantly released his grip on her right frog and gave her a sharp smack on her bruised bottom. Missy yelped, then threw her head back and screamed. “Yeeeeeeeeeehaw. Way to go, cowboy!” Billy thrust upwards just as Missy threw her weight back,
practically doubling the heat and pressure on the top of his driving piston. Billy threw his head back in the pillows and came hard.

*** GIVEAWAY TIME***
Ken Charles has generously offered a copy of either 'Twisted Sisters' or 'Sex Tales From West County: Billy's Tale' to one lucky commenter. So please leave a comment for Ken and let him know which you would prefer.
Don't forget to leave your email address, and follow the blog if you aren't already. We'll announce the winner on Saturday March 31.
Get your copies today!
Best wishes,
~Author Jennifer Labelle~

Monday, March 26, 2012

Another GIVEAWAY and an Interview with the Amazing Lauren Pilla

Today I have the lovely Lauren Pilla on Labelle Books, and she's generously offered a pdf copy of Hotel Sinn to one lucky commenter.

You know the drill, leave a comment, follow the blog if you haven't already done so, and leave your email address in case it's you that is the lucky winner.
We'll announce the winner on Thursday March 29.

Welcome Lauren, how long have you been an author?
Lauren: First, I'd like to say thank you for having me! This is my first interview, hope I get all the answers right. *crosses fingers* I officially became an author in October of 2010. My first contract was Carly's Delight in a Christmas Anthology by Evernight Publishing.

LOL, there are no right answers, hun, we're just happy to have you here. Congratulations on your recent success. What is your favourite genre?
Lauren: I love pretty much every genre, but paranormal and historical romance are my top favorites.

I have to agree with you there. What is the biggest surprise you’ve discovered about the writing process?
Lauren: Hmm, biggest surprise... That my characters really do hijack the story!! I would have a clear plot happening in my head and then when I begin to write, it changes. Sometimes I don't even see it coming till after it's typed.


Can you tell us about one of your current works in progress?
Lauren: My current wip has a little bit of everything. There's action, romance, a creepy villain, and some paranormal. My leading lady happens to be a siren with the gift of song. It's a different take on a siren, since she doesn't have any fins but human legs. She has had to deal with tragedy and betrayal at a very young age. She's hardened her heart and only her true soul-mate can thaw out the ice around it.

It sounds awesome. Name your top three writing goals?
Lauren: Goals, it's good to have goals. My top 3 are easy in theory. The first one, write more stories. Easy enough. My second one is the challenge. Finishing one wip before starting four others. I currently have about 3 started and one floating around in my head. It's not bad, but I want to get them completed. The third goal I have is toughest and that's don't put so much pressure on myself. If the muse takes a vacation, well I should take one too. This year I'm trying not have that "finish the wip or the world will end" feeling. It also makes for a more creative story line when your relaxed.

Those are great goals that I think would apply to most of us. Great answer.
If you had the chance to meet one of your characters privately, who would it be and what would you do?
Lauren: If I could meet one of my characters it would be Bo, from Demon Protector. Sexy, strong, and a great cook!

YUM!
If you could choose to time travel, would you go backward or forward, and why?
Lauren: If I could time travel, I would go backward in a heartbeat. I would love to live in a castle, with secret passages of course.

I'd like to thank Lauren for joining us today, for those of you who would like to learn more about Lauren and her work she can be reached through these sites:
FACEBOOK: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Lauren-Pilla-Author/304322266296329 or
on her BLOG: http://laurenpilla.blogspot.com/

In the meantime please enjoy this blurb and excerpt for a sneak peek of Lauren's paranormal romance Hotel Sinn:

BLURB:
Hotel Sinn. She attended in hopes of reuniting with the dangerously sexy man who’d invited her. However, Anastasia would soon find out that having a one night stand would turn into something permanent in more ways then one.

Victore, a vampire, was sent out by the master to complete a task for the one hundred years ritual. But when he set eyes upon Anastasia, she had intrigued him and he was unable to resist temptation. After a night of pleasure Victore hid Anastasia in his suite only to be betrayed by a fellow vampire.

Now Victore and Anastasia are trapped, in an inescapable place, where anything can happen.


EXCERPT:
"I'm glad you came."
More dirty thoughts crossed her mind. Oh Lord help me, his voice sounds like sex. Is that even possible?“Yes, I'm glad I came too. My name is Anastasia, by the way." She held out her hand to shake his.
He took her hand in his and turned it to kiss the top. His onyx eyes never left hers. Her body melted, her knees went weak, and she felt a tingle between her thighs. Staring into the man's black eyes, the world around her seemed to fade away, leaving just him and her.
"My name is Victore."
She barely heard him speak, and when he let go of her hand, she came back to reality. Weird.
"Are you feeling all right?" he asked, concerned.
"Yes, I'm okay; it's just a bit warm in here, and I've had a few glasses of wine already."
Victore extended his hand, and she immediately took it without a thought. Get a grip, girl, control yourself. "Come, let me show you the terrace and you can get some fresh air."
She could barely think with her arm in his, feeling like a hormonal teenager. Anastasia didn't go gaga over a guy like one of those brainless girls. Did she?
"Do you like what you have seen so far?" he asked. Anastasia nodded slowly, regaining control over her brain cells. She liked everything, including Victore.
"Everything is exquisite." She pointed to the ceiling. "Were those carved? The beams?" she asked.
"Yes," he said simply, and she frowned. Music began to play as they crossed the ballroom floor.
"Oh, Victore, would you care to dance with me?" she said excitedly.
"I thought you wanted to get some air?" he replied.
"Yes, I do, but after one dance," she pleaded. What was happening to her? Pleading? She didn't plead.
He twirled her around, and she faced him and his dark, sexy eyes. His pale skin brought out every dark feature—his hair, his eyes, and his suit—against his flesh. He pulled her close to him, his arm wrapping around her waist. She felt the heat from his body and something else. No, it couldn't be. The tips of his fingers slightly grazed the top of her ass, and she nearly lost it. Her breast pressed tightly against his hard, muscled chest. Her legs intermingled with his, and she inhaled, smelling his cologne, an aroma of male and spices. Was there anything better?

BUY LINK http://store.secretcravingspublishing.com/index.php?main_page=book_info&cPath=4&products_id=218

Get your copy today!


Best wishes,
~Author Jennifer Labelle~
http://www.jenniferlabelle.com

Thursday, March 22, 2012

A GIVEAWAY & an Interview with Jamallah Bergman



Blurb:
Jackson Belle, the son of a prominent family of landscapers and architects whose work has been the “Showcase of the South”, goes to take what he thinks is a routine job for his father who is soon in bed after a fall. He soon finds himself going to Gladstone Manor, a home well known in town as a house that once would host grand balls and parties for the town. But is nothing more than a shell of its former glorious self. Soon Jackson finds himself diving deep within the mystery of Gladstone Manor and its owner Brooke Langley.
Brooke Langley’s life at Gladstone Manor at one time was wonderful and she enjoyed the many memories she had as a child, watching the many people coming to the parties and balls that her parents would give. But a tragic accident leaves Brooke in seclusion, afraid of what the world outside of the Manor would think of her now. It isn’t until Jackson Belle comes into her life and shows her that someone does care that slowly starts to come out to the world and soon finds
true love as well.
I'd like to welcome author Jamallah Bergman to Labelle Books. Today Jamallah answers our questions and has generously offered a pdf copy of her new Secret Cravings Publishing book 'The Lady Of Gladstone Manor'.
So you all know the drill, in order to enter for a chance to win it you've got to show Jamallah some love and leave a comment with your email address. We'll announce the winner on Monday March 26th.
Welcome, Jamallah, How long have you been an author?
Jamallah: I’ve been writing stories since I was about 12, just writing things that popped in my head but it wasn’t until I got older that my stories were more of the romantic side. I wrote my very first “completed” story when I was about 16 and I still remember it to this day. As I got older, the stories became more “intense” and more “sexual” in manner. I can honestly say that I don’t know how many stories in total I have written over the years.


What is your favourite genre?
Jamallah: Interracial, Contemporary and now Paranormal.
Sounds like we have a lot in common. *grins* What is the biggest surprise you’ve discovered about the writing process?
Jamallah: Oh lord, how long it takes before your story is edited. It seems like you’re on edge waiting and waiting and waiting to hear something back, I know I was on pins and needles throughout the entire waiting process when my first story was being edited. But now what I end up doing is trying to occupy my mind on other things while waiting.
You certainly have to be patient in this line of work for sure. I try my best to start on another WIP while I wait or treat myself to one of the many novels on my TBR list. Can you tell us about one of your current works in progress?
Jamallah: Right now I have a 3rd contract with Secret Cravings Publishing on a book called “Special Kind of Woman”, I was writing this book while waiting for the lady to be edited. And right now I am looking over a story that I got the idea about from a dream I had. Basically it deals with a woman who gets a call that ends up being a wrong number from a man and well….all I can
say is that it’s something that there are things that she never expected would happen afterwards.

Sounds great! Can you share your top three writing goals?
Jamallah: 1) To one day have one of my stories put into film or at least on the Hallmark channel. 2) To just get better in how I write my stories. 3) To have one of my stories at least be in the top 100 list.
If you had a warning label, what would it say?
Jamallah: Proceed with caution
LOL, What is the naughtiest thing you’ve ever done?
Jamallah: Oh my….well I honestly have no shame in my game really, so I have to say that I got to make someone I was with into a “human sundae”. Too much fun for words….wouldn’t mind doing it again but of course I’ll have to find that special someone to have that adventure with.


*grins* sounds like a tasty experience, and I for one hope you find that special someone to try it out, in the meantime it would certainly make a great scene in a book..hmmm
I'd like to thank Jamallah for joining us today. It was a pleasure to have her on the blog. For those of you who would like to learn more about Jamallah and her books she can be reached through these sites;
Please enjoy the excerpt below, and don't forget to buy your copy today!

EXCERPT:

Once he took himself another shower and got dried off and got some pajama pants, Jackson called his mom back.
“Did you have a good shower?” asked his mom.
“Yeah, it kind of cleared my head a bit I guess. Well where do I begin?” he asked her.
“Where all good things do my dear but at the beginning. Now tell me what is on your mind?” Nancy told him with a chuckle as he did the same.
“That night after we had left your place and I was taking Brooke home, it was real quiet the entire time we were going to the Manor. She thanked me for bringing her to the house I told her something, I don’t quite remember what but I do know that I had put my hand on hers while I was talking and I left it there when we stopped. I honestly wasn’t thinking it was bad to do that but she asked me to turn on the AC, which I did. When we got to the Manor I walked her up to the door and we talked for a moment more and then just before I was about to say goodnight, she kissed me on the cheek.” Jackson said as he felt himself blushing about the experience once more.
Nancy had a smile on her face that widened as big as all get out. “And what did you do after that?”
“I didn’t get the chance to do anything; she high tailed it back inside the house. But I don’t know momma, I have never felt like that before in my entire life. And after that I’ve been fussing with
myself about this kiss she gave me. It was a simple kiss for Christ sake momma, why in the hell am I thinking about it more?”
“I think you like her more than you really know Jackson, I think you love her.”
Love.......WHAT!
“There is no way I can be in love with Brooke, what makes you think that momma?” he asked her.
“I saw how you looked at her during dinner and how she looked at you as well. I can tell when two people are in love with each other. I mean you obviously have been together basically every other day or so, she’s never even been around another man since her father and the butler and you’re the first person besides the help that has treated her like a human being and not a freak. It’s been something that she’s been wanting for a very long time and you just happen to be the one. Just keep being her friend sweetheart and I think you’ll know when the right moment for you to let her know how you really feel.” Nancy assured her. They continued to talk some more
until she told him good night and he got off the phone too. He sat there for a moment and thought to himself, “Maybe I am in love with her.”

***************************************************************
Best wishes,
~Author Jennifer Labelle~

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

An Erotic Tell it all!

Outside it's sultry...Thursday nite it will be steam'n HOT on trianglevarietyradio.com from 8-11PM Eastern time when 8 erotica authors tell it all!!
Remember they can't see you blush on internet radio...join us - Thursday, March 22nd from 8-11PM EDT on http://Trianglevarietyradio.com click on blog talk radio - you can even call in!
Hear our own Queen Tutt + Sherri Hayes, Verity Ant, Kellie Kamryn, Ken Charles, Dawn Prochilo, Randi Alexander, & Leanore Elliott talk about the #1 topic at the water cooler - erotica!
It's even on Fox news, Time.com, Today Show & the Christian Science Monitor!!!
Best wishes,
~Author Jennifer Labelle~

Monday, March 19, 2012

Creating Fiction with Michael Matson


Creating a Convincing Fictional World


Contemporary and historical authors have a distinct advantage: The settings in which their stories take place are either all around us, or they were all around us. Either way, they are a known quantity by the reader. Everybody knows what a car is, a telephone, a castle, a Roman Legion. But once you move into the realms of fantasy or science fiction, those known
quantities quickly begin to disappear.
What is a “flyer,” for instance? That’s a pilot, right? Somebody who flies?
How about “teleport? ” That’s to move instantly from one place to another, right? Yeah okay, but
how? Are we talking by magical means, biological means, technological means? Or maybe we’re talking about those funny quarks—subatomic particles that physicists love to play with?
Once a writer moves out of the realm of the known and into the subjective realm of fantasy or science fiction, defining the world in a way that doesn’t clutter up the story or sound silly (unless you’re writing satire) becomes a major challenge. There are advantages to taking up the challenge. A good fictional world can become a playground for examining issues that are just
too politically charged to be tackled, even at a fictional level, in a real setting. Too, some readers read to get away from Earth with its never ending twenty-four hour news cycle and endless lists of unsolvable problems.
The question is, just how do you create a convincing fictional world? First, let’s look at what every good fictional world needs:
• First, it has to be internally consistent. If there’s no oil in your fictional world, then don’t
have the coachman greasing the carriage wheels. Your more astute readers will notice, believe me.
• Second, it needs a good history. We all have a cultural history, a community history, a family history, and a personal history. The last two are part of every story, regardless of genre. But the first two have to be created when setting your stories in a fictional world. And those first two affect the latter two profoundly!
• Finally, it needs to be spiritually grounded to create a moral compass. Just why is “right” right
and “wrong” wrong in this fictional world?
Some world builders seem to forget that once you leave our world, with our moral values, right and wrong and everything that spins out from those values lose that anchor as well. Or they treat the subject superficially, which glares out at the reader like a great neon sign. Trite answers to profound moral or spiritual conundrums can ruin a good story in two sentences flat.
Now, you don’t have to start pushing ideas through that short list for very long to see that meeting all those requirements in a convincing way can be rather daunting. Consider my first example: What happens if you create a fictional world with no oil?
How do those carriage wheels get greased? For that matter, how do the grain mills keep
their gears lubricated? No grain mills means no flour means no food. Hmm… Okay, if there’s no oil how are the rooms lit? Candle wax is a petroleum product, so there will be no wax candles on a world where there is no oil. Maybe there are lots of bees, so bees wax is affordable by the masses. Maybe there are more sperm whales, so spermaceti is cheap and abundant. Is it morally right to kill the whales for their oil on this world? Uh oh! Now we’re down to the third item, which will eventually lead us back up to the second, because whether it’s morally right or
wrong to kill sperm whales on this fictional world, and under what circumstances, will have propagated out into the larger society in very big and very small ways. It will affect industry and economics, and it will affect politics and the power games between nations (or potentates). This means, even if it doesn’t touch directly on the plot of your story, it’s still there, a running
undercurrent in the background.
Here’s an example of what we did on our fictional world of Menelon. There is oil and gas, and there are sperm whales. But the elder peoples—the elves and dwarves, who are world builders in our fictional universe—have had a profound effect on how humanity views the world in which it
lives, and so how it utilizes its natural resources and treats its environment. The effect of those elder concepts can be traced as far back as the proto-human creation myths and are now inculcated into the global collective consciousness.
This isn’t to say everyone abides by those values. How boring would that be? Without opposites there would be no tension, no cultural drama, and no moral challenges.
This brings me to a final point about the last item. Whether you want a very simplistic world of moral opposites like those J.K. Rowling and George Lucas created, or something far more subtle and loaded with shades of gray like the World of Menelon, creating deep and meaningful mythologies is essential to having a believable world. Mythology is the magic key to developing a
believable world history. The two are inextricably entwined, and the deeper you dive into one the deeper you’ll find yourself having to go into the other. Your readers may never directly see it. It may have nothing at all to do with your proposed plot. But they will notice the absence in a hundred subtle ways if you don’t use the magic key. So don’t be afraid. Dive in. When you get out
the other end, you’ll find you have a world with a rich and enduring history that is, itself a character in the story.
That is exactly what you want! It’s exactly why you do that work. So that you have a rich and vibrant fictional world worthy of being a character in your story. So that it can inform your societies and the people who live in them. So that it can inform your main characters, be the basis of their wisdom, and determine how they respond to challenges you put in their path. When your characters are a part of their world, not ours, when it all makes perfect sense and is perfectly believable to your readers, then they’ll slip right through the words on the page and into your world without even realizing they’ve done so. Soon, they’ll be diving into one of your books because it feels so good to go to that far away, and yet oh so comfortable and familiar
place. That’s a fictional world done right.
(Oh, and for the record: On Menelon a “flyer” is an industrial mage who has been trained to use his or her minor magical talent to fly.)
Read: RAVEN’S TEARS—buy or borrow for free
Read: FRIENDS LIKE GIANNI—free download!
See all our titles
*********
Best wishes,
~Author Jennifer Labelle~

Sunday, March 18, 2012

The Romance Reviews One Year Anniversary Party!


More than 300 participating authors and publishers are celebrating over at the Romance Reviews for their one year anniversary.
There are several gifts being offered including a copy of my own Finding His Something Spicy (Spice It Up 2) up for grabs this week, as well as a grand prize of a $100 gift card at the end of the month. Check it out:
Winners are announced weekly, and it's going on through the whole month of march. Hope to see you there!
Best wishes,
~Author Jennifer Labelle~

Saturday, March 17, 2012

A Preview of 'Finding His Something Spicy (Spice It Up 2)' by Jennifer Labelle

For those of you who loved Spice It Up, I give you a continuation, a sneak peek into Rafe's story, Finding His Something Spicy (Spice It Up 2).

Get your copy today!

Spice It Up, (The original)

Heidi Taylor has fallen in love with a man who’s off limits. He’s her best friend and she’s afraid to tell him how she really feels, that is until Nathan suggests she needs a little spice in her love life, and designates himself as her something spicy.

BUY LINKS:

ARe:
http://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-spiceitup-652504-146.html

Secret Cravings Publishing:
http://store.secretcravingspublishing.com/index.php?main_page=book_info&cPath=4&products_id=194

~~~~FINDING HIS SOMETHING SPICY (Spice It Up 2)~~~~

BLURB:

Rafe Zakas had no intention of settling down until he met and fell hard for his two closest friends, Nathan and Heidi. But, their perfect trio fell apart when Nathan got a job offer he couldn’t refuse, relocating them. Rafe soon realizes there’s something missing in his life, and decides he needs to find his own something spicy to fill the void. She’s got to be open minded and love him for him, kinkiness included, and he hopes to soon turn their trio into a quartet with Heidi’s help.
Zoey Appleby was content with being single, until her good friend Heidi sets her up with this gorgeous Greek Adonis named Rafe. He awakens desires in her she never knew were there, and introduces her to a whole new lifestyle. Shy at first Zoey has some choices to make, will it be a new love, or the life she’s used to?

EXCERPT:

He kicked the door shut behind them as he carried her inside the bedroom. She was nervous so he planned to take things slow. He wanted to take his time. That is, until she began to squirm, slid down his body as he released her and pushed him against the wall with need. Her kiss was almost frantic, and it made him want to puff out his chest with pride. She wanted him bad, and he loved it.
“Damn, Zoey, you’re driving me mad.” He flipped her around so that she was against the wall and he pressed against her. “I want you, honey, but first we need to get out of these clothes.” He fingered her collar before stepping back to unbutton his own shirt.
They both stared, each a separate seductive display as article after article of clothing was kicked away until they stood in nothing but their undergarments. His erection barely covered as it peeked out at the top of his boxer briefs leaving nothing to the imagination and it made him smile again once her gaze lingered there. “You’re beautiful.” She licked her lips and he closed the distance between them again with a growl.
“So are you, so beautiful in fact that you’ve made me hungry. I need to taste you, Zoey, before I bury my cock inside you. God, I can’t wait for that.”
“Please, Rafe.” Zoey leaned her head against the wall to give him better access as his lips touched her jaw line slowly moving towards her earlobe. His tongue caressed it, and teeth nipped at it before his lips closed around it to suck. One hand pressed against the wall beside her head, as the other worked its way down her torso to her underwear, sliding inside. His fingers finding her slick folds, he stroked them back and forth. “Please, Rafe, please—“
“Please what, honey?” His mouth worked its way back towards hers again for a kiss. “Say it, Zoey, let me hear you. Tell me what you’re begging for.” He removed his fingers from her pussy right then making her whimper as he pushed against her and flexed his hips, the tip of his cock aligning directly on her clit through the thin fabric with just the right amount of friction. He could tell by her reaction. She was so responsive.
“Yes,” she hissed, “make me come, Rafe. I want you to taste me, I want you to taste me and then I want to feel you inside me.” She stroked his cock and this time it was his turn to pant. He had to halt her movements by placing one of his hands on top of hers.
“I’m cocked and loaded here. If you keep doing that I’ll be finished before we get started.”
“Really?” She chuckled, the sound deep and throaty in arousal, and damn he thought it was sexy.
“Really,” he repeated, removing her hand from his crotch he placed both wrists above her
head holding them there. He cupped her breast with the other hand. Tweaking her nipple through the lace, then unclipped the front fastening of her bra. “Now for dessert, I bet you taste as good as you look.”
His mouth lowered to taste the perky mounds in front of him. The tip of his tongue playing with her erect nipples, teasing her and she began to writhe again. He let go of her wrists and fell to his knees. “You’re intoxicating,” he whispered, leaning forward to breathe her in. She was speechless. Threading her fingers through his hair, she encouraged him to continue. His fingers sought her underwear line and hooked the sides to slide them off her hips. Zoey eagerly stepped out of them and pushed her hips forward. “Please, Rafe, just put your mouth on me.”
“Gladly, honey.” He smiled replete with male satisfaction and then licked her like an ice cream cone from puckered hole to clit. A man on a mission, his tongue licked, flicked, and fucked her opening repeatedly with enthusiasm. He was enjoying himself way too much and moaned with satisfaction again once she tugged on his hair to guide him to the spot she needed him most.
“Right there, Rafe, oh God, right there. Don’t stop.”
He smiled against her warm wet silkiness. She tasted like heaven, and her reaction made
it so much more exciting. She was clearly a woman who knew how to take her pleasure. A little shy at first, but once ignited became a little hell cat demanding her release and he aimed to please. “That’s right, baby. Come for me,” he whispered while concentrating on her clit. The tip of his tongue applying just the right pressure against it before his lips closed in to suck. He could feel her juices slide down his chin, and knew she was close. Her legs began to buckle and he had to grip her hips to keep her from falling forward.
She moaned, her grip against his head got tighter, and she pushed her hips forward trying to get as close to his face as she could, and then she finally cried out. That’s right, baby, so fucking good. He wanted to lick every last drop and did until her convulsions resided.
“Holy shit,” Zoey whispered breathless. “That was amazing.”
“It was.”
Rafe got up from the floor and approached her again. It was his turn. He was so turned on right then his cock demanded its own satisfaction. “Now it’s my turn."
“Definitely.”
Zoey licked her lips again and mimicked Rafes movements on her as she went to her knees in front of him. She wasted no time ridding him of his underwear and immediately put him in her mouth. Her tongue moved against the base of his shaft and moved up to his tip in motion with her bobbing head.
Oh fuck.
“Damn, Zoey, I’m not going to last. Wouldn’t you rather have my cock filling your pussy?”
“Why not both?”
BUY LINKS:
Best wishes,
~Author Jennifer Labelle~

Thursday, March 15, 2012

A Preview of 'In Loves Own Time' by Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy


Blurb:
There may be no place like home and nothing like love…..when history teacher Lillian Dorsey inherits a three story Edwardian brick mansion from the grandfather who banished her pregnant mother decades before, it’s a no brainer. She’ll visit the place, see it and sell it. Instead Lillian’s captivated by the beautiful home and intrigued by the ghost of the original owner, Howard Speakman. Soon she’s flirting with the charming, witty gentleman who’s been dead for more than a century and before long, they admit it’s a mutual attraction. Still, when she’s alive and he’s dead, any shot at being together seems impossible.

But where there’s a will, there’s a way….one afternoon while pretending to visit the past the impossible becomes a brief reality. If they visited 1904 before, Lillian knows they can do it again and if so, she can prevent Howard’s untimely death. With a combination of love, powerful hope,
and stubborn will, Lillian bends time to her will and returns to the summer of 1904. But Howard’s death looms ahead and if she’s to find a happy ending, she must save him from his original death.

EXCERPT:

“Lillian, dear, dear Lillian! Your sister has favored us with a visit.” Howard kept his voice level but the strain of this unexpected arrival was apparent.
“Hey, Lil!” Vinnie said, jumping up to envelop her in a hug strong enough to rock them both off their feet. “I told you I’d come and here I’m! I introduced myself to Howard. We’ve been talking.”
Lillian shuddered. Her sister’s tone was the one she hated most, a smug and arrogant attitude portended trouble. Since their last conversation didn’t go well, she engaged warning mode and proceeded with caution even as she plastered a smile across her lips.
“So, you came to visit! I didn’t think you would – I haven’t heard from you in awhile.”
“I know. I’ve been so busy but when things settled down, I jumped in the car and thought I’d surprise you,” Lavinia’s answering grin was as phony as her own was. “And I got lucky-Howard was home and you weren’t so we got acquainted. He’s great, really.”
Lillian met Howard’s gaze of inquiry and shrugged her shoulders. As much as she loved her little sister, Vinnie was the last person she wanted to see and she really didn’t want to debate her sanity again with her sister. Without words, Howard communicated he’d withdraw, leaving her to face their guest alone so she swallowed, then nodded her approval. He slipped from the room and she feared he might vanish but the sound of his footsteps marching upstairs reassured her.
“Come on back to the kitchen and have some lunch,” Lillian said, putting an arm around her sister’s shoulders. “I just made myself a sandwich.”
“Thanks but I grabbed a burger from Mickey D’s,” Lavinia said. “But if you have some Diet Coke or iced tea, I’d love some.”
Lillian nibbled at the sandwich but her earlier hunger faded and she found it hard to swallow each bite, washing them down with sips of iced tea. Vinnie tipped her glass and swirled the amber hued tea around before she took a drink and put down the glass.
“Howard is a little eccentric but he’s a charmer,” Lavinia stated, tipping her head back to gauge her sister’s reaction.
“Does he live here too? I found the back door open so I slipped in and snooped a little. It looks like a cozy little love nest if you ask me.”
The words hung in the air as a certain challenge and Lillian confirmed her fears Vinnie was spoiling for a fight. She swallowed a bite and then plunged in, now or never.
“Howard doesn’t “live” anywhere at the moment since he has been dead since 1905.” It sounded fantastic even to her ears but she pressed onward with the truth. “He is here with me most of the time and we do love each other. What may seem eccentric to you is nothing but the difference between a gentlemen from the past and today’s guys.”
Her sister spewed the mouthful of tea she’d been about to swallow. “You’re still on this ghost kick? Jeez, Lil, I cannot believe you can tell me the guy’s been dead for a hundred years with a straight face! I know very little about ghosts but I can tell you Howard, is no ghost.
He’s as real as I’m.”
Lillian had prepared for this moment and shaking her head, she rose and pulled a manila
envelope from a drawer.
“No, Vinnie but he was. You don’t have to believe me but here is a copy of his obituary, a photocopy of a picture taken at a strawberry festival in 1904, and a few other things you might find interesting.”
Lavinia frowned. “What’s all this? If this is a joke, its gone way too far or you’re really crazy.”
Lillian smiled. “I’m not crazy.”
If looks could kill, the expression on Lavinia’ s face would’ve struck Lillian dead but after a long moment when neither sister dropped their stare, she bent her head and read the clippings, one by one. The silence stretching out over those long moments was heavy, a tangible thing
Lillian could feel to her bones. After what seemed like hours, Vinnie pushed the clippings, back into the envelope and looked at her sister.
“So, now do you believe me?” Lillian prompted.
“I don’t know.” Her voice lost any smug certainty. “I really don’t know what to think. I can’t say I believe in ghosts but there’s things here I don’t understand.”
Softened by the change in tone, Lillian reached across the table to take her sister’s hand. “I know. It’s all very weird and confusing. I still don’t understand every detail and neither does Howard.”
“He’s a ghost, for real?” Her plaintive voice brought Lillian back to the days of bedtime stories and fairy tales.
“Yes.”
“And you love him?”
“Yes.”
Vinnie jerked, almost spilling the tea and stared at her sister with wide eyes.
“If you mean what you said – and right now I think you do – where in hell do you go from here? How can you have a relationship with a ghost? I mean, please!”
Lillian hunted words with care. “It is complicated but we have a plan. Things have happened you don’t know about, incredible things you won’t believe and we know a way we can be together in every sense of the word if it works.”
“It will.” Neither realized Howard stood in the doorway until he spoke but both jumped at the sound of his voice. “Your sister and I plan to wed, Miss Lavinia and to live in this house as man and wife, raising a family.”
Vinnie stood up with such speed the chair toppled to the floor with a resounding crash.
“Say what?”
He repeated the same sentences with slow precision and winked at Lillian who smiled and nodded.
“One day I put on some old-fashioned clothes and we pretended to be having tea in Howard’s time.” Whether she believed it or not, her sister followed every word with avid attention. “But something happened and we were really there, in the summer of 1904. Shugie, Howard’s family housekeeper, served us and talked to us. For the first time, except in dreams, Howard and I could touch and we did.”
She felt the warmth of the blush creeping up her cheeks but she focused on her sister who shook her head in denial. “You traveled back in time to 1904 and shared tea with Howard? Yeah, right.”
“It is true, I assure you,” Howard said, a grin twitching at his lips. “Moreover, we intend to return on a permanent basis. I’ll be alive, thank the Lord, and Lillian will be my bride. I can grow old in the house I built as I intended if all goes well. If you’re not inclined to believe me, watch this.”
Without another word, he vanished, evaporating into the air with a cheerful wave of one
hand.
Vinnie’s lips paled beneath her signature cherry red lipstick and bent her knees as she
pitched forward, eyes rolling up toward her forehead as she fainted at Lillian’s feet. Although Lillian tried to break her sister’s fall, she managed only to lower her to the floor. Almost as soon as her body landed, Lavinia’s eyes fluttered and she blinked, sitting up so fast she almost lost
consciousness again.
“Easy,” Lillian said, playing the role of the stern older sister with ease and experience. “Give yourself a minute to catch your breath before you get up.”
Vinnie’s face was the color of natural vanilla bean ice cream. “What the hell happened?”
“Howard disappeared,” Lillian said, smirking. “I’m almost used to his vanishing act but
I suppose it was a shock.”
Vinnie pulled herself up to collapse into a chair. “Shock doesn’t do it justice, Lil. I suppose the nonsense you’ve been telling me is true, then.”

Find me at,
Facebook: Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy
Twitter: @leeannwriter
A Page In The Life: http://leeannsontheimermurphywriterauthor.com
Rebel Writer: Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy
http://leeannsontheimermurphy.blogspot.com

Purchase
Links:

http://www.amazon.com/In-Loves-Own-Time-ebook/dp/B007A209G6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1329492235&sr=8-1
http://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-inlovesowntime-722388-148.html
http://www.bookstrand.com/in-loves-own-time
http://www.barnhttp://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/in-loves-own-time-leeann-sontheimer-murphy/1108895972?ean=2940013948822&itm=7&usri=sontheimer+murphyesandnoble.co

I also have a book trailer here:
http://youtu.be/yql9ietR3HM

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I'd like to thank Lee Ann for sharing her newest release with us. I absolutely love the premise, and the excerpt was awesome!

Get your copy today!

Best wishes,
~Author Jennifer Labelle~
http://www.jenniferlabelle.com

Monday, March 12, 2012

A GIVEAWAY and some Cinderella facts with Joan Reeves


CINDERELLA NEVER DIES

The Cinderella Myth continues to be one of the most popular in the world, crossing all cultural lines. I guess every romance reader loves Cinderella stories. I know we romance authors like to write them.I found a wonderful website that documents Cinderella's" history. I knew that there are hundreds of different versions of the Cinderella story, but I didn't know that the earliest recorded version of the story comes from China. (Some sources say it actually originated in Greece even earlier.)

Quick Facts

Around 850-860 AD, or CE if you prefer that designation, Tuan Ch'eng-shih wrote the story. According to historians who judged the story by the way it was written, it seemed that readers were already familiar with the story, but it was the first time it had actually been written down.

According to the Chinese story, the heroine doesn't have a fairy godmother, but a magical fish who helps her. However, a golden shoe leads a prince to her, and they marry.

Fast forward nearly 1200 years, and Cinderella is still having her story told. Don't let the title of my romantic comedy, http://www.blogger.com/%3Ca%20href= Cinderella (Book 1 of San Antone Two-Step fool you. It's still a Cinderella story with heroine Darcy Benton wishing on a star instead of to her fairy godmother for the prince she wants. In this case, the prince is Chase Whitaker, owner of an oil exploration/production company.

Of course, I put pretty shoes on the cover. What is Cinderella without a pair of knock 'em dead shoes?

I'm happy to say this romance has proved to be enormously popular with the readers who buy books at All Romance Ebooks where it's been one of their Chick Lit Best Sellers almost since its first month on sale. It had a similar run on iTunes, and now those wonderful readers with Nooks have discovered it, and the sales keep increasing every day.

Most stories don't show Cinderella and her prince living happily ever after. Of course, I plan to show that in the second book of the series that stars Darcy's brother Bruce because I personally like to see love validated.

Here's an excerpt for you to sample.


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NOBODY'S CINDERELLA
by Joan Reeves

Chapter 1

Darcy Benton wondered if she needed to check into a hospital. Her nervous system seemed to have shorted out, producing feet that felt like blocks of ice and hands that perspired as if it were July rather than December. Her heart raced faster than a quarter horse, and her face felt as warm as a passive solar collector at the end of a hot Texas day.
Releasing her white-knuckled grip on the strap of her new black leather handbag, Darcy opened it and fished out one of the tissues she'd stashed inside.
Hoping that the man who'd created this shock to her system was still engrossed in reading her resume, she furtively wiped her palms. For good measure, she blotted her damp forehead.
Her eyes strayed to the man on the power side of the mahogany desk. Chase Whitaker was the owner of Sunbelt Oil Producers, one of the many small independent energy companies in San Antonio. His attention remained fixed on the paper he held.
Chase. She tried the name out in her mind. She liked it. It was unusual and suited him perfectly. She'd researched him online so she knew he was only twenty-eight and had already made his mark in the volatile exploration and production side of the oil business.
Feeling hot and cold by turns, Darcy examined his features as intently as he studied her resume. His face easily rivaled any male heart throb on the silver screen. To characterize his dark blue eyes as bedroom eyes was an old cliche, but it was certainly true. Bedroom eyes. The phrase made Darcy tingle.
His thick ebony hair made her fingers itch with the desire to slide through the silky black strands. Just thinking about touching him made her sigh. And his mouth! Oh, my goodness! Darcy couldn't even put words to the feelings incited by his full, chiseled lips. Another sigh escaped her. At the soft sound, Chase shifted. His eyes flickered to her then back to her resume.
Darcy felt the blush begin beneath her prim white blouse and creep upwards until it reached her face. This would never do. She blotted her forehead again, surprised at how damp the tissue felt.
Frowning, she looked at it. Her eyes widened in shock. Blue ink practically dripped from the sodden wad of tissue. Horrified, she stared dumbly at the blue ink that colored her finger tips and rimmed her unpainted nails.
If any of her three brothers had been in the room, she'd have accused them of playing another of their dumb practical jokes. But this time, she only had herself--and a cheap ballpoint pen that had leaked over the contents of her expensive new purse--to blame for her failure to achieve the sophisticated femininity she wanted. Somehow, she thought in despair, she always ended up feeling and looking like the gangly kid who'd tried to outdo her older siblings in every sport.
Resigned, Darcy opened both palms. Blue ink--indelible blue at that--mottled her pale skin. She looked at the shiny brass and glass table next to her chair, with the ridiculous hope that there would be a box of tissues beneath the small Christmas tree decorated with tiny gold oil wells. No such luck. Desperate, she wiped her palms up and down the sides of her navy skirt.
With a prayer on her lips, Darcy looked at her hands again. The mottling had been replaced by wide smeary streaks. Great! Just great! It was no use. The ink wasn't going anywhere. She closed her hands into tight fists, trying to hide the stains.
Why had this happened when she wanted so desperately to make an impression on Chase Whitaker? And not just because she wanted him to hire her. The man stirred something inside her that she'd never felt in all her twenty-three years. Just looking at his hands made her quiver like a taut wire on a piano.
Her music teacher mother would describe his large, well-formed hands with long, shapely fingers, as pianist hands. The bronze of his hands contrasted sharply with the turned up cuffs of his starched white shirt. The thing Darcy liked most about his hands was the absence of a wedding ring on his left hand.That brought her up short. Get a grip, Darcy Benton, she scolded herself. You're here for a job--not a romantic entanglement. As if she would know how to have a romantic entanglement. Even if the opportunity presented itself. She needed to stifle her overactive imagination.
She found herself praying that she would get this accounting position. And not just because she had to start repaying her student loans. She wanted it because of him. She looked at Chase Whitaker again. Another sigh escaped her. Chase glanced up, his dark blue eyes sharp and penetrating. He frowned. Surely, he couldn't know what she'd been thinking? She felt her blush intensify. As she watched, he slowly wiped his hand across his forehead. His hand. Those bedroom eyes. He mesmerized Darcy. Feeling light-headed, she uncrossed her legs, knocking over her briefcase. "Sorry," she mumbled. She rolled her eyes to the ceiling in disgust. Could she possibly be more clumsy?
Then she realized that he seemed to look, not at her eyes, but about an inch above them. His irresistible mouth twitched as if a smile struggled to break free of restraint. He stood, and Darcy's mouth went dry as her gaze climbed his tall, broad-shouldered frame.
When she'd first entered his office, she'd had the unusual pleasure of looking up to meet his eyes, rather than down, as she usually did. She felt absurdly pleased that he was a few inches taller than her five feet eleven inches.
He reached into his back pocket and pulled out a snowy white square of linen and walked around the desk and offered it to her. "This should help."
Taken aback, she frowned. He touched his forehead again, making a wiping motion. Suddenly, horrified understanding flooded her. Quickly, she swiped the handkerchief across her forehead and wasn't surprised to see it come away streaked in blue. She didn't even want to think about what her she must look like.She returned his handkerchief. Chase carefully folded it and laid it on his desk top. He remained standing, towering over her. She wished he would go back to his chair.
"Thank you, Mr. Whitaker," she said, acting as if nothing were wrong. Her voice was brisk and cool. She was afraid to let any warmth creep into her voice for fear she'd cry, or worse, that he'd discover how breathless she felt with him so near.
Each time she looked at him, she felt so peculiar, like the time her three brothers had dared her to climb the giant pine tree in the back yard, and she'd fallen, knocking the breath out of her.
Belatedly, she realized that he was talking. She focused hard and caught the end of his sentence. "--give you a chance. We'd wanted someone with experience, but we're willing to take you on, though we try not to hire straight out of college. However, your class standing was excellent, and you seem like a mature, sober young woman."
His eyes swept her up and down, from the tight knot of hair forced into submission by half a tube of gel, to the black, square-framed glasses. Those sexy eyes of his quickly took in the severe navy suit, pristine white blouse, and floppy navy bow tie.
The book she'd read on dressing for success had said this was the outfit professional women wore. She'd plunked down her credit card in hopes that the severe clothing would change her image from a basketball-playing tomboy to a stunning corporate diva. Maybe she should have checked the copyright date in the book, she thought, feeling uncertain.
His sexy eyes reached her size ten feet clad in sensible, low-heeled shoes--ugly black patent leather flats that, Darcy knew, no fashionable woman her age would be caught dead wearing. But Darcy had thought they'd be perfect in case the owner of Sunbelt Oil turned out to be on the short side.Chase cleared his throat. "And you are obviously sensible and practical." He smiled.
Mature? Sober? Sensible? Practical?
Why didn't he just say she was so undesirable that a man ship-wrecked on a desert island for twenty years wouldn't put the moves on her? Darcy fumed, insulted by his assessment.
The rest of what he said faded into the background. Just once, why couldn't she be seen as incredibly sexy and completely irresistible! Why couldn't he be as attracted to her as she was to him?
When he offered her the accounting position for which she had applied, Darcy coolly thanked him. She knew she was being ridiculous, acting like a starry-eyed teenager in the throes of infatuation, but she couldn't help it. She hadn't had enough experience with infatuation to become blase about it.
She tried to work up some satisfaction at landing her first real job, but she felt more depressed than elated. Just get over it, she told herself. Even had she managed to attract Chase's attention, she'd never have stood a chance.
Although she had limited experience with the opposite sex, Darcy recognized the kind of man Chase Whitaker was--a real heartbreaker. It was stamped on him as indelibly as the ink that stained her fingers. He was completely out of her league--from his sexy blue eyes to his delectable mouth.
"Welcome to Sunbelt Oil," he said, offering his hand to her. Pulse pounding, Darcy stood and stepped toward him. She'd forgotten about her briefcase, but it hadn't forgotten about her, she thought, as she stumbled over it.
Momentum pitched her toward Chase. He reached up and grabbed her hands, catching her before she did a half-gainer and landed face first at his feet.
Smoothly, his grip changed to a handshake. Laughter danced in his sexy eyes. "Again, welcome to Sunbelt," he said smoothly.
"Thank you, Mr. Whitaker." His touch was everything she had imagined it would be. His skin was warm to her icy hand. Her pulse beat erratically. The touch of his palm to hers was flame to dry tinder. Suddenly, Darcy fully understood the meaning of desire. Her pulse throbbed in places she hadn't suspected could throb.
Mortified by her discovery, she jerked her hand back. She'd die if he ever knew how she felt! Determined that he never know how he affected her, she thanked him in a brisk, cool voice. She might as well squelch her hopeless romantic notions, Darcy told herself, because she knew that Chase Whitaker saw nothing, absolutely nothing, that attracted him.
Why couldn't she be petite, cute, and sexy--with a flair for fashion rather than a killer hoop shot? Why did she have to be a tomboy who towered over nearly every man even in a state full of long, tall Texans?
Darcy managed a few strangled words conveying her pleasure at joining his company even as a horrible suspicion began forming in her mind. She rejected the idea. It was unthinkable! Perfectly ridiculous!
When Chase touched her elbow, Darcy knew she was a goner. He led her to the door, which was a good thing, because the way her head was spinning, she'd never have found it on her own.
Somehow, she found her way back to her little blue car in the parking lot. She was in such a hurry that she nearly knocked down an elderly white-haired man, bundled up in a red ski parka trimmed in white faux fur. Absently, she smiled at the white-bearded man and mumbled an apology. If she hadn't been so shaken by her encounter with Chase Whitaker, she'd have been amused that he looked like Santa Clause. As it was, his appearance hardly made an impression because she was too busy bemoaning life's cruel sense of humor.
In her car, huddled on the cold blue vinyl seat, Darcy stared at the office building and wondered which window was Chase's? Softly, desperately, she asked, "What am I going to do?"
The icy temperatures made her breath visible, as if her plaintive question hung in the cold air. Working near Chase Whitaker, who had looked at her as if she were another piece of office furniture that he'd just acquired, was going to be impossible.
Darcy pounded the steering wheel with her cold, blue-stained hands. Crazy as it seemed, she had fallen in love at first sight with her handsome new boss. Nobody's Cinderella, Book 1 of San Antone Two-Step, is available at all major ebook sellers. Here are my other romantic comedies. The links are to Amazon, but they're also available at all major ebook sellers.

BUY LINK:
http://www.amazon.com/Nobodys-Cinderella-Antone-Two-Step-ebook/dp/B006LXJ7Q8/

THE LINGERIE COVER BOOKS

JANE (I'm Still Single) JONES http://www.amazon.com/JANE-Im-Still-Single-JONES-ebook/dp/B0052YX29A/
Just One Look http://www.amazon.com/Just-One-Look-ebook/dp/B004TSCOK8/
Still The One http://www.amazon.com/Still-The-One-ebook/dp/B005062SLS/
Kiss On My List
Available late March 2012

TEXAS ONE NIGHT STANDS Series

Book 1: The Trouble With Love http://www.amazon.com/Trouble-Texas-Night-Stands-ebook/dp/B004WSQ94W/
Book 2: Romeo and Judy Anne http://www.amazon.com/Romeo-Texas-Night-Stands-ebook/dp/B005EOTK2G/
THE GOOD, THE BAD, & THE GIRLY Series
Book 1: Old Enough To Know Better http://www.amazon.com/ENOUGH-KNOW-BETTER-Girly-ebook/dp/B006CRV9IW/


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Joan Reeves is an overnight success--and it only took her 25 years to be called that! She's a bestselling Kindle author of Romance. In her spare time, she's a mild-mannered reporter for the Daily Planet who--no, wait, that's someone else. Seriously? Okay, if we must be serious. Joan Reeves is a multi-published print and ebook author. She's also published all over the web under her own name, various pseudonyms, and as a ghost. She's the writer and publisher of the long-running blog SlingWords (http://slingwords.blogspot.com).joan/ believes: "Although we are all different on the outside, on the inside, we all share the same human desires and emotions. My job as a writer is to appeal to those human emotions. I sometimes think professional writers do this well because, as F. Scott Fitzgerald pointed out, "A writer isn't just one person. He (she) is a whole lot of people trying to be one person."Joan's Vision Statement? "It's never too late to live happily ever after."

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I'd like to thank Joan for coming on Labelle Books today. Nobody's Cinderella sounds like a great read. I loved the excerpt.

GIVEAWAY ALERT!
Joan has generously offered to give a copy of Nobody's Cinderella to one lucky commenter. So let's talk shoes, shall we?

We want your best shoe comments, a little shoe history maybe, how many shoes you own, what's your favorite pair? The best shoe related comment wins it.

Joan will announce her winner on March 20th.

Best wishes,
~Author Jennifer Labelle~
http://www.jenniferlabelle.com/

Friday, March 9, 2012

A Huge GIVEAWAY & Sneak Peek with Cynthia Wicklund


I'd like to introduce everyone to author Cynthia Wicklund. Today Cynthia takes over the blog with a guest post and has offered up a very generous giveaway to a few lucky commenters.

First prize is a copy of Thief Of Souls
Second prize is a copy of Lord Of Always
And the GRAND PRIZE is a copy of Cynthia's 4 Garden book's.

So please leave a comment with your email address, and if you haven't already we'd love for you to follow this blog.

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Best-selling Kindle author Cynthia Wicklund is a former RWA Golden Heart Finalist who writes Historical and Paranormal romance. She is published with Ellora's Cave Publishing, their Blush imprint. She lives in Texas with her family and two Rat Terriers, rascally puppies that could use a little quality time with the Dog Whisperer.
***

What do you do when you've built a readership that expects you to produce a certain type of book, and you want to write something entirely different?

I thoroughly enjoy writing my Historicals, and I have no intention of giving them up. New series on the way! But I've always had a secret love for the fantastical, fairy tales and things that go bump in the night. Urban Fantasy a la Kim Harrison and Jim Butcher fascinates me. I enjoy intrigue, edgy storylines, a little bit of scary with my happily-ever-after. If you can toss a little torrid romance into the mix, all the better!

I'm sure I'm not the first author who wanted to change genre paths—or at least occasionally wanted to trip down another path when the muse struck. And ask any writer; that muse is a difficult compulsion to ignore, because writers want to write what fascinates them. I truly believe the most inspired writing springs from an absolute love for what you are creating, stories that spin in your head, driving you batty until you give them life.

I've got several of those stories begging for expression. If you love Regencies and Historicals as I do, and you love paranormals as well, it just seems there ought to be a "combo platter" there somewhere. A Regency vampire in a modern world—oh, he would be handsome!—can you imagine the possibilities? I'm sure it's been done before, many times, but each writer brings her own unique spin to the table. I'd really like to bring mine.

So what's a girl to do? It's a risk taking on the unknown. And trying to find a new audience is an unnerving proposition. You don't want to disappoint the readers you have, and you're never certain whether or not you'll find an appreciative audience for your new work. At best it's a leap of faith, but ultimately one I believe worth taking.

Late last year I published my first paranormal novel with romantic elements, Thief of Souls. It was, as the cliché goes, a labor of love. I'd like to share an excerpt with you.
***

BLURB: THIEF OF SOULS

SOMETIMES A GIRL JUST WANTS THE BAD BOY…Nicholas Anthony's spirit has been corrupted. A moment of spite four hundred years in the past turned him into an immortal monster. Now he is obsessed by an unnatural hunger, feasting on the good in others while seeking the good in himself. But unlike the vampire of myth, it's not the taste of blood that draws him, but the very essence of his victims. The soul. Fortunately for Nicholas the evil that dwells within him has not destroyed his conscience, his ability to care, because that in the end will be his salvation. That…and Regina Miles.


EXCERPT: THIEF OF SOULS

“Do you believe in destiny, Regina?” Nick asked.

She was beginning to. “I don’t think so.”

“I do. The first time I saw you I felt a connection, a powerful one. That is not something easily ignored, especially if one is superstitious as I am. I believe fate occasionally tips its hand, and it is wise to listen.”

“I don’t know what it’s telling you, but maybe it’s telling me to run like hell.”

Nick lifted her hand, watching her as he did, and placed his mouth on her knuckles. His lips, which he had licked suggestively, were slightly parted, wet and warm in a lushly erotic way. Regina felt the tip of his tongue on her skin, and her insides went soft as hot wax. He held the kiss for long moments then raised his head, although he continued to hold onto her.

“You can’t escape me, Regina. You may make me work for what I want, but in the end you are caught as surely as I am.”

Her hand in his began to tremble. “What do you want, Nick?”

“You really don’t know?”

“I’m not into casual relationships. And I’m not ready for something more serious.”

“Some things are out of our power, Regina.” There he went again, using her name like a caress. "The choice is no longer ours to make.”

“Destiny?”

“From the depths of my soul, I believe it is.”

“But…” it came out in a whimper, “I can’t get involved right now. There’re things I have to do.”

“Being a doctor?” When she nodded, he said, “I won’t interfere with your responsibilities, Regina. I want your heart, not your life. What is important to you is important to me.”

Regina met his smoky gaze. Unexpectedly, a voluptuous image of two heated bodies, sleek and golden, entwined in man’s most primal activity rose in her mind. Lust as hypnotic and compulsive as opium smoke permeated the scene. Even as the vision consumed Regina, she knew he shared it with her, knew who belonged to those writhing bodies.

Nick leaned toward her and touched her lips with his. Rather than breaking the spell, she felt as though she were spiraling out of control, felt the swelling of exquisite sensations she would have thought impossible in a public place. He was so close the scent of him filled her senses, and Regina found herself gripping his fingers with a strength she didn’t know she possessed.

Nick drew back then, but instead of looking smug at her obvious weakness, he appeared as moved as she. Regina had to fight the urge to throw her arms around his neck and pull him back against her. All at once she wanted to cry and, indeed, when she spoke she sounded tearful.

“I need time, Nick.”

“All the time you need, love,” he said in a gentle voice.

A prickling of memory touched her then, as though he had said almost those same words to her once before. But when?

“You’re very sure of yourself, aren’t you?” she said.

Nick simply continued to watch her, but Regina knew what he was thinking. Sure or unsure, it didn’t matter, for the future was no longer theirs to decide.

Destiny…
***
I'd like to thank Jennifer for so graciously hosting me on her blog today and introducing me to her readers. It's been a pleasure.

***

CHECK OUT CYNTHIA's BOOKS;

LORD OF ALWAYS,
BUY LINK: http://www.jasminejade.com/p-8366-lord-of-always.aspx

4 GARDEN BOOKS;

IN THE GARDEN OF TEMPTATION (Book1),
BUY LINK: http://www.amazon.com/Garden-Temptation-Book-ebook/dp/B004A8ZT9A/ref=ntt_at_ep_dpt_1


IN THE GARDEN OF SEDUCTION (Book2),
BUY LINK: http://www.amazon.com/Garden-Seduction-Book-ebook/dp/B004C44GP0/ref=ntt_at_ep_dpt_3

IN THE GARDEN OF DISGRACE (Book3),
BUY LINK: http://www.amazon.com/Garden-Disgrace-Book-ebook/dp/B004C44M7C/ref=ntt_at_ep_dpt_2

IN THE GARDEN OF DECIET (Book 4),
BUY LINK: http://www.amazon.com/Garden-Deceit-Book-ebook/dp/B005HFKEJU/ref=pd_rhf_ee_shvl2

THIEF OF SOULS,
BUY LINK: http://www.amazon.com/Thief-of-Souls-ebook/dp/B005Q53132/ref=pd_rhf_ee_shvl2

Three amazing prizes to THREE LUCKY COMMENTER's, let's show Cynthia our support. We'll announce the winners on Monday, March 12, 2012
I'd like to thank Cynthia for joining us today. She's a wonderful author and it was certainly a pleasure to have her here.

Enjoy!

Best wishes,
~Author Jennifer Labelle~
http://www.jenniferlabelle.com/

Monday, March 5, 2012

A GIVEAWAY & A Tasty Teaser with Leanore Elliott

SOME TRULY WICKED LIPSTICK

I am delighted to make an appearance here at Labelle Books with my friend and bud, Jennifer.
I'm Leanore Elliott and I write Romance. I write what some call 'Naughty Romance.' The really hot kind, and that is why my friends all call me 'Wicked Leanore'. My usual story is an out of the norm, paranormal erotica tale and Leanore has written 12 of them.
Decadent Publishing has released my first and only Non-Paranormal for their new Edge Line.
I've found out that I just love to entertain and since I am not a supermodel, can't sing a note and I can't paint? I create different kinds of beauty and write a kind of music that comes alive in your mind. I paint the world into places all of us want to visit. I do it simply to have people come on journeys with me. The audience is my readers, and I take them away to another world for a few hours.
What excites Leanore? Well… heat—scorching, heavy breathing heat. With each book I've written, the scenes have become hotter and the stories have become more intriguing.
With Decadent's new Edge Line, I was challenged to write something risqué—A Scorching Flash of fiction, if you will.
It all happens down in the gritty city of New Orleans during Mardi Gras. Jazz is really trying to enjoy the parade below her Bourbon Street Hotel balcony. However, she just cannot seem to get in sync with the carefree feeling. She is frustrated, frustrated by the memory of a pair of devilish blue eyes. Her thoughts stray from the noisy revelry below to her fantasies of a tall, hot cop, she saw only once.
She decides that if she can't have him, she will find her release with something else, using a rather unusual, pleasing brand of lipstick. As she prepares to give herself a little naughty distraction? Yes, you guessed it. Mister blue eyes shows up, catching her in a very 'delicate' situation.

SEXY CHERRY RED EXCERPTS
He seemed angry at first, and Jazz could not figure out why. Then, he pushed her up against his car, his warm hands roaming up along her thighs, past her waist, and under her blouse. He leaned in and whispered, "Have to search you."
Next, he was playing with her nipples, his hard body pressed up against hers. "I have to read you your rights, cher." The sound of his deep Cajun drawl caused a heat to blaze across her skin.
By this part of the dream, she would be panting and tossing in her bed.
He lifted her skirt, his strong fingers slipping into her panties to stroke her clit until her juices were slick while he whispered ever so softly into her ear, "You have the right to come for me…."
~~~~~
With the delight of someone opening a gift, she tugged at the underwear and slyly peeked in. A heated flush ran across her face and she stared at his hard, jutting cock while a rush of lustful adrenaline coursed through her.
At her breathless joke and her delighted peeking, he let out a chuckle.
~~~~~~
He opened her legs wider, a now serious glint appearing in his eyes. "I watched that sweet tail of yours all afternoon." He grabbed her derriere with both hands. "Watching that luscious ass of yours while you walked ahead of me." He dragged her closer. "Teasing me with that sexy sway you have,"
~~~~~~~~
This story was fun to write and the hot flashes just vibrated off the page. (Wicked-chuckle)
After you read this hot, little tale, you might just call me wicked too.
Wicked wants you to be able to try her Brand of Lipstick and the flavor of the day is Cherry Red…Chuckle.

I will be presenting three posters with a brand new copy of Lipstick & Jazz! Just leave a comment and your Email. We'll announce the winners on March 7.
LEANORE AT AMAZON
LEANORE'S HOME
LEANORE AT DECADENT


Best wishes,
~Author Jennifer Labelle~
http://www.jenniferlabelle.com/

Friday, March 2, 2012

The 'Flashed' Birthday Giveaway

A good friend author Kiki Howell celebrates her birthday on March 7, and to help celebrate she's asked me and five other authors to create a book based on some of our flash fiction for you all. Currently on Amazon for .99 it will be offered free March 3 through 7th on the Amazon KDP Select program: http://www.amazon.com/Flashed-Flirty-Deliciously-Explicit-ebook/dp/B007FWX3B4/ref=sr_1_25?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1330642530&sr=1-25 

For those of you without kindles, or if you happen to miss the free days then leave a comment on this blog post with your email address and I'd be happy to hold a giveaway for a FREE pdf copy.

Blurb:

To say much in very few words can be a challenge, but flash fiction gives authors a chance to show their voice, their writing style, and their passion for the stories they write.

Flashed, the anthology, gives you six authors and a lot of smoldering hot flash fiction. In it, Kiki Howell is thrilled to be joined by five authors who she loves to read. And so, she invites you to experience what she loves about each author: Jennifer Labelle’s emotional writing, Sommer Marsden’s gritty and sexy style, Cassandre Dayne’s scorching hot intensity, Emma Hillman’s sassy heroines, and Abby Hayes wild child ways, along with her own paranormal and erotic romance in this anthology.

The combination is flirty, fun & deliciously explicit.
 
Praise for the Authors of Flashed

“I loved how Cassandre build this world, LOVED the characters to pieces, loved that I cried at one of the main characters passing, loved how Devin found the love of his life even while loosing a job he really didn’t care for to begin with. This book needs to have a part 2. Cassandre?” - Michele from Top2Bottom Reviews on Forced Fantasies by Cassandre Dayne

“Dane is a person who has lived through a lot of tragedy in his life, but he still remains a good person. Steele, despite all that has happened to him, has a good soul that transcends the pages of this book. I would say this book is not for the faint of heart; it is not warm and fuzzy in nature but if you like your men rough, hard, and ready for anything, Punchback is a must read.” Tina on her Reviewers Choice for February 2012 – Talking Two Lips on Punchback by Cassandre Dayne


"...one of the tops storytellers in the erotica genre." ~Violet Blue about Sommer Marsden
"I will read ANYTHING that Sommer Marsden EVER writes. She is just that damn good." ~Seriously Reviewed


"I just love Ms. Sommer Marsden’s paranormal books, they have suspense, action, love, and a lot of twists. And I can't forget about the humor she uses to flavor the storys. Her style is easy to follow and captivating. It fascinates and seduces you, making you automatically one of her fans." ~Dolce Amore for Booked Up


"This was a memorable, remarkable and phenomenally scorching read. Don't miss out on these hot encounters and the ultimate fantasy." - Night Owl Romance on Location, Location, Location by Emma Hillman

"Ms. Hillman's writing is tender and sweet, arousing and poignant." - You Gotta Read Reviews on Back to Life by Emma Hillman


"Kiki’s use of words and descriptions is indescribable and weaves a kind of magic around the reader." -ParaNormal Romance Reviews about The Healing Spell by Kiki Howell

"Kiki has such a way of extracting deep feelings from her readers. She has such a handle on peoples emotions you would almost swear it was an otherworldly talent." ~ Raquel Vega-Grieder about Working Out The Kinks by Kiki Howell

What a truly memorable and original novel Torn Asunder brings to life the very essence of 19th Century England and Ireland, and in doing so, provides the reader with the feeling they are actually there! Only a rare talent can accomplish this, full of magic, drama and romance, Kiki Howell joins the ranks of the very top supernatural writers! ~A James Mason Community Book Club MUST READ, Review by Rick Friedman, Founder


“If there was one book that I would encourage my friends and family to read this would be it. To say I was totally blown away by all the characters and the plot is an understatement. I have never read a book like this in my life and cannot wait to see what author Jennifer Labelle comes up with next.” ~LASR Reviews on Meant To Be by Jennifer Labelle

“What a sensational short read! Spice it Up is the perfect hot and spicy addition to your erotic romance collection! With Heidi and Nathan both being open to different sexual experiences, Spice it Up features MF, MM and MMF all in a 40 page package without feeling gratuitous or excessive.” ~Just Erotic Romance Reviews on Spice It Up by Jennifer Labelle

“Though the author gave us a nice plot and story, she also gave us steamy intimacy scenes that were an added bonus. We were also given a sexy epilogue that I liked and thought ended perfectly.” ~Romance Novel Junkies on Second Chance Love by Jennifer Labelle


"Warning: please refrain from reading Finding Paradise while in the presence of others, as frequent relief may be required. Holy smokes this book is HOT! Both the erotic and the mundane are terrifically portrayed in Finding Paradise… For exquisite sex scenes, amazing writing and the "real talk" feel for online chat, Finding Paradise is certainly deserving of a JERR Silver Star Award. Bottom line, find your own bit of paradise and pick up Finding Paradise ASAP!" - Just Erotic Romance Reviews about Finding Paradise by Abby Hayes

“This is the first book I have read by Abby Hayes and to say I was intrigued with where the story was going is an understatement. I was expected a little girl on girl, perhaps a menage but a full fledged partner swamp and orgy...I was tickled beyond belief.”– Coffee Beans & Love Scenes Reviews on Finding
Paradise

 
And, if you've got the time don't forget to stop over to Kiki's blog to wish her a happy birthday too. http://authorsbyauthors.blogspot.com/2012/03/flashed-birthday-giveaway.html?zx=74a534fbdac00e6a