Wednesday, November 30

Guest Author Marilu Mann

Changing Focus (Lusting Wild 3) 
by Marilu Mann

Reluctant to be a Pack Alpha, Micah Keeps Vigil has no hesitation about what he wants in a mate. A strong, intelligent, passionate and, most importantly, shifter female. He’s found her in photojournalist Olivia. She’s come to Micah’s lodge to write about winter sports.

Olivia isn’t expecting a gorgeous man who encourages her wilder nature with a sizzling erotic encounter in her room. Nor does she anticipate the amount of steam they generate in the sauna. With Micah’s hot body and Olivia’s innate sensuality they generate enough heat to melt the snow around the lodge.

One problem—Olivia isn’t aware she’s a shifter. She believes her vivid dreams are just that—dreams—and that her blackouts can be controlled with medication. There’s no way she’s been running through the woods on four feet! Micah has to convince Olivia to accept herself—paws and all—or lose her forever.

Excerpt from Changing Focus: Lusting Wild 3

“What size are you?”

“Excuse me?” She bristled immediately. He moved closer, touching her shoulder.

“You’ll need warmer clothes, specifically long underwear. I keep a stock here for all my guests, there’s a closet full on the second floor. You’ll need to find your size and dress in layers. It’s the key to keeping your body temperature regulated in extremely cold weather.”

“Oh.” Smiling sheepishly, she met his eyes again. “A medium¬—unless they run big. Then I take a small.”

“I’ll let you decide.” He slid his hand down her arm, squeezed her hand then released her to lead the way out of the kitchen and up the main staircase. Olivia couldn’t help but watch him move. He was the most graceful man she’d ever seen in her life. And the way his jeans hugged his butt had to be nearly criminal.

“Here’s the closet.” He opened a door and stepped aside. She moved forward into the walk–in closet and laughed. It looked as though it held every possible color and size of long underwear. Each shelf was neatly labeled with the sizes it contained.

She glanced to the other side and laughed again. Those shelves held bathrobes and bathing suits. Men’s, women’s and even a few children’s sizes graced the shelves here. Vibrant colors and enough variety of styles to satisfy even the most hard–to–please customer.

“Bathing suits?” She tipped her head back at him.

Micah nodded. “Some people don’t realize we have a sauna and whirlpool. When they come for the winter, they’re pleasantly surprised, but usually unprepared. Of course, I have no objection to nudity in the sauna. It just depends on who else is here at the time and what their feelings are. I’m sure you’d look good in nothing.”

Olivia’s breath jumped out on a gasp. Had he really said that? He reached around her and pulled a couple of neatly packaged sets of long underwear off the shelf. “Try these. Just leave the ones that don’t fit in your room and I’ll take care of them later.”

Leading the way back out of the closet and down the hall toward her room, he spoke over his shoulder to her. “I’m going to go upstairs and finish dressing. I’ll meet you in the main room in thirty minutes.”

“Micah?” When he turned, she smiled. “Thank you.”

“My pleasure. Remember, layers. The long underwear, cotton, wool or flannel shirt and pants if you have them, at least two pair of socks, wool is best. I have hats, gloves and scarves downstairs in another closet.”

“You really are prepared, aren’t you?”

“I try to be.” He nodded at her again then turned and moved quickly up the stairs leading to the third floor. Olivia entered her room, the packages of long underwear clasped to her chest.

“What an interesting man. But really, Olivia Marie, you must get control of your hormones. Attacking your host is not a good idea.”

She stepped over to sit on the edge of her bed. Laying the packages down, she thought back to Micah’s sauna comment. Surely she’d misheard him since he hadn’t done or said anything even remotely suggestive after that. Her hand slid down her side and she shivered. What would his hands feel like against her skin?

They’d be rough more than likely. Would he run his hands over her breasts lingering on the undersides? Or would he concentrate his touch on her nipples? Would he squeeze hard or barely cup her breasts?

Her nipples pebbled at the thought as she cupped herself letting her fingers pinch the hardening tips slightly. Heat pooled in her belly as she slid her shirt off. Olivia traced a hand down her stomach to slide into her jeans. She plucked at the lace of her panties imagining Micah’s hands there instead of her own.

With a slight moan, she undid the buttons on her jeans to shimmy out of them. Lying back on the comforter, Olivia snaked two fingers to her clit. The warm flesh throbbed in answer to the soft pressure. With her other hand plucking at her nipples, she began to circle her fingers on that swollen damp spot between her legs.

Images of Micah nipping her breast raised her hips off the bed as she stroked harder and faster then slid her fingers inside her warm body. She let her fingers become his cock as she stretched to thrust into herself. Moving her fingers faster in and out of her pussy, she imagined his dark hair falling forward, stroking lightly across her shoulders as his gorgeous brown eyes held her gaze. Sliding up to stroke across her clit again, pinching it lightly before moving her fingers back down.

In her mind it was Micah sliding two fingers inside her. The heat and slickness as she gripped her own fingers made her breathe harder. She wondered what his cock would feel like. Rotating her hand so she could fit a third finger in, Olivia lifted her hips, thinking only of Micah fucking her.

His cock replaced his fingers in her imagination pounding into her pussy. Olivia groaned softly. She wanted to wrap her fingers in that long black hair to pull him down for a kiss. It would be a long, hot wet kiss where their tongues tangled together. Her other hand plucked at her nipples—one and then the other—sending frissons of pleasure that met the ones from her pussy in a molten pool in her belly.

Her heels thrummed the floor once, her hips pistoning against her fingers then Olivia muffled her cries of pleasure by turning her head into the pillows. Gasping, she let her body shudder back down to earth. A soft stroke across her clit as she withdrew her fingers from her own body caused another shiver to trace across her skin.

A moment passed then she remembered what she was supposed to be doing. With a soft curse, she jerked herself upright to rip open the long johns and get dressed. Someday, Olivia Marie, you will feel a man there again. Once you learn to control the savage inside. She changed her underwear but didn’t take time to wash anything other than her hands.

She headed back downstairs, feeling a little bit satisfied but a lot more aware. As she made the turn into the great room, she smiled. Micah leaned over the fireplace poking at the fire. His jeans accentuated a very well–made ass. Olivia could only dream of what it might be like to be bent over in front of him.


Marilu Mann brings the steaminess of the Louisiana bayous to her books and she doesn't stop there. Marilu's willing to travel to the frozen tundra of Wisconsin to heat up those northern nights and melt a little snow.
She'll also circle the world to Wales, Ireland, Scotland and back just to bring you books that make you sweat.

Currently residing in Texas, Marilu is an avid armchair traveler. Her sexy shifters will set your blood to boiling in no time. Owned by one Diva Teen and various animals, Marilu keeps busy writing the novels her readers beg for.

Marilu is thrilled to be a part of the Ellora's Cave family and loves to hear from readers.


Twitter: and

Marilu Mann is a team of two authors. :)

Tuesday, November 29

Guest Author Elysa Hendricks

By Elysa Hendricks

From the moment we're conceived our lives are a series of firsts. Most of these firsts pass without notice or are quickly forgotten. Who among us remembers their first word, their first step, their first piece of chocolate? Well, maybe the chocolate.

But certain firsts are etched into our memory like words chiseled in to granite. Our first love. Our first heartbreak. And most memorable our first kiss. Time and circumstance may cause them to fade, but the impression remains.

Though I've seen animals rubbing their faces and snouts together, to me, kissing, the pressing together of lips, seems a very human activity, an intimate connection. The touching of lip to lip or lip to skin is more than a physical action; it expresses a gamut of emotions. Friends kiss in affection. Parent's kiss away a child's pain with love and compassion. Lovers kiss in passion.

While it's said a person's eyes are the window to their soul, our lips are the gatekeepers that expose our souls to the world. With our lips we speak and sing, smile and laugh, scowl and yell. And kiss.

Every little girl wonders and dreams about falling in love, about her first kiss. Who will he be? The boy next door? A friend of a friend? A stranger? Where will they meet? How will she know he's the one? The questions, excitement and fear are endless, causing sleepless nights, and long involved discussions with her closest friends about who he might be and what it'll be like. Inevitably the subject turns to kissing. They talk and giggle about the mechanics of kissing, practicing the art on the backs of their hands and occasionally a mirror. A few bolder girls might even experiment by kissing each other. They want that first kiss to be thrilling, wonderful, and special.

For the lucky ones their first kiss is all that and more. But I'm guessing for most of us it wasn't. For those of us who received our first kiss as a teenaged girl it probably came from some pimply-faced, sweaty-handed, teenaged boy with braces, who was more interested in what was below a girl's neck than above.

It's been a long time since those days for me. And fortunately the memories have dimmed, but the emotions remain.

When I sat down to write about my first kiss I realized that I really don't recall which of the kisses I remember was the first. Was it the boy with braces I met at an outdoor concert and spent a few uncomfortable minutes necking with behind the bushes? Or maybe the "older" man (he had to be at least 20) who was working on his car in the garage and managed to steal a kiss? Or was it my first "boyfriend"? Quite honestly I can't remember if he ever actually kissed me. I think he was homesick and found my family more interesting than me.

All I can really remember is thinking 'Is this what all the fuss is about? Well, that's disappointing.' When I started writing romance I decided that none of my heroines would ever be left dissatisfied by their first kiss or any other firsts.

I hope your first kiss - and your next - was everything you hoped and dreamed it would be. I'd love to hear about them.

Story Blurb:

Abandoned by his father and betrayed by his half-brother and fiancee on the eve of his wedding, JAKE GALLAGHER no longer believes in love. Though he longs to go home, his undercover work for the Texas Rangers keeps him in a lawless Texas border town. Even though it jeopardizes his mission he refuses to stand by and watch outlaws rape and murder a young woman. Getting shot and losing his memory wasn't part of his plan.

While fleeing from her stepfather's plans to steal their ranch, CHRISTINA GOODWIN witnesses her brother's murder and is left in the hands of a merciless band of outlaws. Raised in a strict convent, Christina has little knowledge of men or the world, its dangers and temptations.

Frightened and alone, she is forced to accept the help of the dark gunslinger who rescues her. Though drawn to Jake's potent masculinity, she hesitates to trust him, fearing her stepfather has sent him to bring her back. Unsure of Jake's motives for helping her, she struggles against him, determined to find a way to avenge her brother's death and regain control of her ranch from her stepfather.

First Kiss Scene

"You did just fine. I'm living proof." Jake watched with pleasure as a smile lit up her face. He returned it. "Tell me how your brother came to hire me? Where we met? Maybe you can help jog my memory."

A panicked looked crossed her face and she went suddenly pale. "I-I, w-we..." Her gaze darted around refusing to settle on him. Then with an audible breath she regained control. "I'm not sure how or where Christopher met you. He never said. I was staying in, um, in Ramblin waiting for him. He brought you there and we headed out for St. Louis."

Jake listened to the girl's lies. Like before, she didn't do it well. Her nervous plucking at her skirt and the way her gaze avoided his gave her away. "If we met in Ramblin for me to guide you north to St. Louis, how did we end up in Peaceful which is southeast?"

Color crept into her cheeks as she stared at him in horror. "You remember?"

For some reason she didn't want him to remember, which made him more determined to do so. "No, but I know where Peaceful is and it isn't on the way to St. Louis from Ramblin. So how did we end up there?"

"You had some business there." Her chin came up, but her eyes didn't quite meet his. "I don't know what it was. You didn't say. But that's where Christopher died. Can we not talk about this anymore? Please." Her voice broke on the last word and she bent her head to hide the tears he saw gathering in her eyes.

As much as he needed the truth, he found himself unwilling to push her. Her tears softened the hard knot of anger inside him.

A tendril of hair fell forward across her face and he reached out to brush it away. His knuckles touched the tender skin of her cheek and lingered. She looked up with startled eyes, her lips parted in question. Her lies forgotten, his gaze locked with hers. He caressed her face then threaded his fingers through her hair. Like silk it flowed over his hands.

Cupping the back of her head in his hand, he leaned toward her. The tempo of her pulse increased beneath his fingertips. Her breathing grew shallow and her eyelids fluttered shut. At his gentle tug, she swayed into him. His other arm went around her back and pulled her into his embrace. With a soft sigh she surrendered to his caress. Without hesitation he slanted his lips across hers.

Sensations swamped him, his own hot, pounding hunger and her sweet, warm yielding. His arms tightened as he deepened the kiss. With a gentle probe he urged her lips apart. After a slight hesitation, she allowed him entrance and his tongue explored the moist recesses of her mouth.

Take it slow, gentle, Jake warned himself. One hand massaged the small of her back and molded her slim frame to his harder one. The other anchored her head so she could not escape his kiss, even though she showed no signs of wishing to. With difficulty he held his passion in check.

He filled his nostrils with her scent, the smell of warm, willing woman. Pulling his lips from hers he buried his face in her hair and struggled to control his desire.

"So sweet, so soft," he whispered. "Do you know how I want you?"

How he longed to strip her of her clothing. The urge to lay her in the fragrant grass and drown in her velvet warmth beat like a drum in his blood.

Her hands clutched his shoulders, her fingers kneading his flesh as she pressed herself against him. Her lips sought his. She whimpered when he pulled back.

"Slow and easy, Kitten."

Author Bio:

After trying her hand at a variety of careers: retail sales, insurance underwriter, video store owner, home day care provider, and motherhood, Elysa Hendricks, a longtime reader of romance, sat down to write a short contemporary romance. When her heroine turned out to be a winged, telepathic alien, Elysa decided she enjoyed writing stories set in different places and times. Fortunately for the reading public that book remains hidden under her bed along with the evil killer dust bunnies.

After spending some time (longer than she cares to remember or tell) learning how to write she then penned a series of fantasy romances. GEMINI MOON, CRYSTAL MOON, SHADOW MOON and FORBIDDEN MOON are available from ImaJinn Books.

THIS HEART FOR HIRE is the first of two books set in 1870's west Texas where a convent reared innocent and a gunslinger with no memory struggle to survive and find love while crossing the dangerous west Texas frontier.

With THE BABY RACE and COUNTERFEIT LOVE Elysa penned two short contemporary love stories set in the real world of small town America.

While living in Illinois she helped found the Windy City Chapter and the Futuristic, Fantasy & Paranormal Chapters of Romance Writers of America as well as taught workshops on writing at writer's conferences and at local community colleges. Recently relocated to central Ohio she's happy to be part of the Central Ohio Fiction Writer family. Someday she dreams of writing on a laptop while sitting on a tropical beach.

Monday, November 28

Guest Author Mina Khan

The First Kiss
by Mina Khan

The first kiss is a special stand at the brink of new possibilities, hoping for a magical connection.

I still remember my first kiss ever. I was 11 and he was 12, our families were friends. We’d spent two-weeks in the summer together and we were about to go our separate ways. The setting was perfect: sunset at the beach. We’d managed to lag behind everyone else...and then he stole a kiss. It was a quick peck, sweet and innocent...but still thrilling enough to send us hurtling across the boardwalk, hearts galloping almost out of us, grinning at each other.

The first kiss I shared with the man who became my DH...was different. What was supposed to be a goodnight kiss ended up being a major make-out session, lol. A man of few words, he delivers with actions. And yes, my heart raced like kid behind the wheels of a Corvette. Still does.

So, I try to make the first kiss in my stories special and full of magic. Here’s my hero, Rukh, just after sharing a kiss with the heroine, Sarah in THE DJINN’S DILEMMA:

The original plan had been to fade again. Unfortunately, he’d come up with the harebrained idea of introducing himself. Touch, he’d theorized, would strengthen his link to Sarah and enable him to peek into her mind.

The handshake hadn’t worked.

Instead, she’d kissed him.

And what a kiss. For a moment, all barriers between them had melted and her mind lay open like a book waiting to be read. One look at her raw desire for him and all his other thoughts had fled. She’d ceased to be Sarah and become Jasmine to him. He’d gawked, frozen like a virgin, and then almost lost himself in her. Damn, it had been too long, and it had felt good. Better than good.

He should never have let that kiss happen.

Want to know more about Rukh & Sarah? Check out my book page

Thanks for visiting with me!

Mina Khan

Book Blurb:

Rukh O'Shay, half-djinn and assassin, is used to taking out the bad guys. But his latest assignment, Texas Journalist Sarah White, is nothing like he expected. A glimpse of her bright aura reveals her gentle spirit, while her beauty makes him long for only one thing—to taste her.

Sarah shares the raw desire to connect with Rukh. He can turn her on with a glance, and satisfies needs she didn't even know she had.

But Rukh had been hired to kill her—and the only way to save her is to find out who wants her dead before someone else finishes the job....


Book is Available At:

Barnes & Noble:


Author Bio:

Mina Khan is a Texas-based writer and food enthusiast. She daydreams of hunky paranormal heroes, magic, mayhem and mischief and writes them down as stories. Between stories, she teaches culinary classes and writes for her local newspaper. Other than that, she's raising a family of two children, two cats, two dogs and a husband.

She grew up in Bangladesh on stories of djinns, ghosts and monsters. These childhood fancies now color her fiction.

You can find her at:

Tuesday, November 22

Savage Bytes -- Now Available at All Romance eBooks!

Hey everyone! Book two of the Hacked Investigations series is now available at All Romance eBooks! Right now, it's only $4.27 instead of $4.49. Every little bit helps with the holidays coming up, right? :-)


Ian works to keep his relationship with Hannah strong as they solve a case that baffles the police.

Private Investigator Hannah Franklin has a new partner, her sizzling hot lover and technomage, Ian Bradley. But they may be in over their heads when brought in by their friend from the hospital to quietly solve a case that baffles even the police. The victims are being drained of blood and having their organs removed in a ritualistic fashion.

When Ian’s attention narrows to solely encompass their work, he’ll need to keep their relationship strong, or he could find himself repeating a painful past.

Changeling Press

Sunday, November 13

Six Sentence Sunday 10

Hi everyone! Whoa, I'm amazed that this is my tenth week doing Six Sentence Sunday! Can you believe it? Click here to view my previous entries.

Quick note to set it up. This week skips a couple paragraphs ahead in Jungle Fire from my last Six Sentence Sunday post. We're drawing closer to my favorite part of the scene. *grins*
He winked and sat next to her in the hammock. It tilted enough that she slid closer to him.

Her hip bumped his, and her nerves tingled. She crawled away. Unfortunately, he must have taken that as an invitation to come closer, since he lay next to her. "What are you doing?"
Jungle Fire available from Changeling Press.

Visit the other Six Sentence participants.

Saturday, November 12

Great review for Jungle Fire

Hey everyone! I just wanted to share a great 4 heart review for Jungle Fire I got from The Romance Studio recently! Woo!

"I enjoyed this paranormal romance story. This is a fast-paced story that is filled with a sexual tension between Kyle and Rubia that you can almost feel and a lot of action."

Click here to read more

Thursday, November 10

What is Cyberpunk?

First guest posted at Kinley Baker's blog.

As I’ve been promoting, a common question has come up. “What is Cyberpunk? I’ve never heard of that before.” But I’m willing to bet that you’re heard of some movies that portray it. The Matrix, anyone? How about Blade Runner, The Terminator, Strange Days, or 12 Monkeys? Yep! I knew it. I see the distant recognition.

Let’s look at the name, cyberpunk. It is a combination of cybernetics and punk. But what makes something a cyberpunk? There are three main elements: Setting, Protagonist, and Society/Government. I’ll try not to geek out too much as I go over them! *grins*

Setting: First of all, the base genre of cyberpunk is science fiction, so it’s no surprise that they take place in the future. Although, instead of what you normally think of with science fiction’s space travel and galaxies, a cyberpunk is placed in near-future Earth. They are post-industrial dystopias set in high-tech, very urbanized cities, more specifically in what is described by Wikipedia as “the often nihilistic underground side of an electronic society.” The world is usually dark and technology rules it.

Protagonist: The protagonist is usually a lone hero computer hacker who fights against injustice. Here is a good, precise clip from Wikipedia: “Many cyberpunk protagonists are manipulated, placed in situations where they have little or no choice, and although they might see things through, they do not necessarily come out any further ahead than they previously were. ... This emphasis on the misfits and the malcontents is the ‘punk’ component of cyberpunk.” The hero is the underdog that fights against The Megacorporation.

Society/Government: So, where is the villain? Right here. Greedy megacorporations replace the government, gathering up as much power as they can and using it for their own purposes while the government is weak politically, economically, and militarily. Also society-wise, social order has broken down to some degree.

I hope you get a better sense of what cyberpunk is now. If you have any questions, feel free to leave them in the comments section, and I’ll do the best I can to answer!

Wednesday, November 9

Guest Author Stephanie Draven

Why the Supernatural is So Popular During Hard Times?
by Stephanie Draven

Thanks for having me here! As an author of paranormal romance, I’ve been thinking about why vampires, werewolves, and other supernatural elements have become so popular in genre fiction.

Let’s face it, times are hard. Money is tight. We’re fighting god-knows-how-many wars overseas. The country is politically polarized and religious tensions are actually rising. Given the dark, gritty reality, it seems startling that readers would flock to fiction that’s even darker and grittier...but that’s exactly what has happened.

Historically, the trend probably has much in common with the Golden Age of Superhero Fiction during World War II. Then, as now, the country was facing financial difficulties and fighting a war on two fronts. The reality of life was already filled with pain and stress, but people turned to comic books about troubled heroes who operated outside of societies norms and faced enemies even more dangerous than Hitler.

We think of escapism in terms of things we’d like to see happen; comedy and wish-fulfillment fiction has long been a part of the emotional arsenal in relieving social tensions. But it seems that people also seek out escapism that puts their own life into perspective and makes it seem not quite as bad as it could be. Sure, my house might be foreclosed upon, but at least I’m only being pursued by figurative blood-suckers like the banks, not actual vampires.

The Supernatural affords us with villains we’ll never have to actually face, with powers we’ll never have to fight, and with situations that are outside of the political conflicts we have with our fellow citizens. In short, speculative fiction has always allowed us to confront contemporary issues without the baggage of contemporary talking points and propaganda slogans. It gets us out of our world, and also out of our lives, so that we can think about problems in a new and different way.

That’s powerful stuff and its a trend that’s likely to stay with us for a while, yet.

Visit Stephanie's website at

Sunday, November 6

Six Sentence Sunday 9

Hi everyone! Click here to view my previous entries.

Quick note to set it up. This week continues on Jungle Fire from my last Six Sentence Sunday post a few weeks ago. This is still Jungle Heat's sequel. It follows Rubia and Kyle.
She lunged for her spear, stuck in the ground nearby. Gradually, the realization dawned on her who this man was, and she settled back, her nerves still tense and ready to fight.

"Some reflexes you have there," Kyle Reynolds said. A grin stretched across his lips, brightening his face. At ease, he leaned against the tree near her feet while she admired his broad, muscular shoulders that narrowed down to a slim waist.

She rolled her eyes and crossed her arms, unwilling to show the impact his presence had on her.
Jungle Fire available from Changeling Press.

Visit the other Six Sentence participants.

Saturday, November 5

NaNoWriMo Update

So, I've been doing NaNo this month, and so far, I've reached 4,733 words! Woohoo! Yeah, it's not exactly on par with where I should be or where I'd like to be, but it's more than I had at the beginning of the month. I'm very much enjoying working on this story. The hero is so awesome, and the heroine... man, I feel for her. She's going through a lot of craziness. *grins*

I've also been working toward my next novella release, which should be coming out December-ish. It's a superhero romance! I received my edits for it, so I'll be busily working on them to get them back to my editor. I hope you all enjoy reading it since it was so much fun to write.

Tomorrow I have a Six Sentence Sunday post scheduled, so make sure to come on back to see more of Rubia and Kyle from Jungle Fire!

Tuesday, November 1

Techno Crazed -- Now at Fictionwise!

I hope everyone had a fantastic Halloween! Yesterday, Techno Crazed, the first book in the Hacked Investigations series, was released at Fictionwise. How cool!

Here's the blurb:

Private investigator Hannah Franklin's life is turned upside down after being contacted by a former employee of MAX Home Security, the leader in security services. But they're not just protecting people anymore. Hannah's informant claims to have proof that MAX has ordered the assassination of politicians who stood against the corporation. 

When her informant is killed and an attempt is made on her life, Hannah has no choice but to contact a freelance hacker. Her only hope now lies in the hands of a man she never expected to welcome back into her life. 

Ian Bradley has lost his girlfriend and his job, as well as having acquired a very annoying gnome. Now his ex, Hannah, is in danger, and she needs his help. Ian vows to protect Hannah with every resource available to him -- and as a technomage in a high-tech world, his resources are almost endless...

Buy at Fictionwise

In other news, today marks the beginning of National Novel Writing Month, and I'm pretty ecstatic about that. I have a paranormal romance project I'm working on during it. Woot! It's something I've kept on the back-burner for a while, so I'm happy to finally get a chance to write it.
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