About the Author
About the Author
The Iron Admiral: Conspiracy
Series: Ptorix Empire # 1
Inter-species war looms. In a race against time, ex-admiral Saahren must convince Allysha to set aside her conflicted emotions about him to help him prevent the coming conflagration. And perhaps while he’s doing that, he’ll win back the only woman he’s ever loved.
Available FREE just about everywhere.
Publication date: February 28th 2017
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense
Hunted: There’s only one thing worse than seeing your unrequited crush every day at the office…and that’s getting trapped with him in a snowy mountain cabin.
Maria Torres has been through hell and back. A former kidnapping victim, she’s used to being famous for all the wrong reasons and having people handle her with kid gloves. And it seems that the man of her dreams, Dwayne Lameko, is no different.
So when an ALIAS client requests her presence on an op, Maria believes she’s ready to spread her wings and prove all her co-workers wrong…especially Dwayne. But when danger follows them into the wilderness, Maria has no choice but to prove to herself and Dwayne that she’s strong enough to handle anything…even his love.
Maria Torres was first introduced in the Family Stone series, Still the One. She finally gets her happily ever after.
He was sorry? She stepped to her left, trying again to go around him and get away from his dominating presence. “I don’t need your pity.”
He stepped to his right, blocking her way again. He loomed over her, but she didn’t feel threatened. Caged, anxious to get away from him? Yes.
But not scared. She knew in her soul he wouldn’t hurt her.
“You really think pity is what I feel?” He tipped his head, bringing their faces closer together. So close she was again aware of the flecks of brown and green and gold in his dark eyes.
“No. Yes. I don’t know.” She’d been lost for eight years. Social cues bewildered her. She had no idea what he was thinking. She only knew she needed to get away from him.
But he appeared oddly hurt.
His broad shoulders blocked the fading light from the window, casting the kitchen in shadows and mystery.
“I would never hurt you.”
Not physically. “I know.”
As if he couldn’t help himself, he cupped her shoulders in his big palms. Maria’s breath caught. Held.
He was touching her again. Third time today.
Dwayne frowned. Maria had tensed beneath his hands.
On the ride from the airport, the scent of her shampoo had swirled in his senses. When she’d stroked the leather seat of the of the Range Rover, he’d started to get an erection, imagining her stroking him in more intimate places. But that was never going to happen.
His stomach churned with regret. “Then why are you still so upset?”
Her body language was all wrong. She was stiff, uncomfortable, and he didn’t know why. Her shoulders were delicate beneath his much larger palms. “No one touches me.”
Shit. He lifted his hands away from her body, fast. “Sorry.” Jesus, he’d apologized to her more in the past hour than he’d apologized to anyone in years. He was a “live and let live” guy with solid core values and a confidence in his moral compass.
“No. No.” She straightened her shoulders, stared defiantly. “No one touches me.”
His heart clenched. No one touched her? He thought about his family. They were always touching. Affectionate. He recalled her stiffness in his mother’s arms.
Dwayne snorted. She was five feet of nothing with soft curves and a sweet smile. “Of what?”
She shrugged. Looked out the kitchen window over the sink. “I’m a freak,” she said softly. “Nature or nurture. Except I didn’t have any nurture for…a while.”
She stomped her foot. “Don’t be sorry. Talk to me.”
How could she throw him so far off his stride? “I am.”
“Not like you talk to other…people.”
“Women. Dwayne.” Once she let go, she let go. “Other women. You flirt, you tease. But with me, you just….”
Avoid. Of course he did. He wanted her far too much.
What the hell had Jillian been thinking to pair them together on this op? He took an instinctive step back.
“Am I so repellent then?”
What? “It’s not you.”
She laughed harshly. “C’mon, Dwayne. I might have been in forced solitary confinement for eight years but even I know that’s bullshit.”
He blinked. He’d never heard her swear before.
“It’s not bullshit,” he began defensively.
She snorted, that little sound of derision goading him. “Right.” Her sarcasm hit him in the gut. When she didn’t argue any more, didn’t fight back, underscoring the truth that she didn’t believe him, something snapped.
“I’m attracted to you.” The confession burst out of him with an alarming speed.
Her mouth opened and closed like she was a fish out of water. “What?” she said faintly. A deep burgundy flush spread up her neck and over her face, her eyes sparkling with temper. He’d clearly rendered her speechless.
“You heard me the first time.”
USA Today Bestselling Author Lisa Hughey has been writing romance since the fourth grade, which was also about the time she began her love affair with spies. Harriet and Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys later gave way to James Bond and Lara Croft and Jason Bourne.
Exploring the complex nature of a profession that requires subterfuge and lies fascinates her. She loves combining her two passions into fiction. As evidenced by her Black Cipher Files series.
Archangel Rafe was her first foray into the paranormal but after spending time in the Angelic Realm, it won’t be her last. At their heart, the Seven novels are about the dynamics of family relationships. But the really hot Archangels don’t hurt.
And recently she’s been immersed in the Stone Family novellas, four stories about a blended family of brothers and sister who have a lot more in common than they realize. But of course she couldn’t just write about family and romance. There are complex plots, bad guys, and suspense too.
Lisa loves to hear from readers and has various places you can connect with her, although, shh, Twitter is her favorite.
Bad boy Mick Donovan has dedicated his life to avenging his brother’s death, even aligning himself with an FBI Task Force to achieve his ends. Which leads him to the mess he’s in now–undercover as the husband of the woman he’s been fantasizing about, despite knowing how off-limits she is, to protect an innocent child.
After an ambush, Destiny Harper is on the run and out of places to hide from a ruthless drug lord hellbent on claiming his son. Charged with protecting the boy, Dez lands in the mountains on a collision course with Mick, a blizzard, and a past she’d rather forget. But even as the close quarters ignites the passion between her and the sexy biker, she knows there’s no future with him. Mick will sacrifice everything for revenge—even her.
Unforgettable – Untouchables #2
Amazon – http://amzn.to/2nTCskN
Of Glitter and Gold: A Canary Club Anthology
Sherry D. Ficklin
Published by: Clean Teen Publishing
Publication date: March 27th 2017
Genres: Historical, Young Adult
Set during the flamboyant anything-goes era of 1920’s America, these three tales are filled with intriguing characters and rich imagery from the time period—with flappers, jazz music, gangsters, and lavish wealth. Escape to a different decade today with the compelling stories of the Canary Club Anthology.
Novelette 1- Gilded Cage
Masie, the flaxen-haired daughter of notorious bootlegger Dutch Schultz, returns home from boarding school to find her family in crisis. Her mother is dangerously unstable, her father’s empire is on the brink of ruin, and the boy she once loved has become a ruthless killer for hire. To keep her family’s dangerous secrets, Masie is forced into a lie that will change the course of her future—and leave her trapped in a gilded cage of her own making.
Novelette 2- All That Glitters
A dame with brains, moxie, and killer curves, June West isn’t your average flapper. She’s managed to endear herself to the son of one of the most powerful gangsters in New York, earning herself a spot in the limelight that she’s always longed for. With the infamous playboy at her side, June has become accustomed to living the high life. Lavish parties, expensive clothes, sparkling jewels—nothing is beyond her reach. But when her carefully woven web of lies finally catches up with her, she must make an impossible choice… come clean about her past and risk losing everything, or find a way to bury her demons—once and for all.
Novelette 3 – Nothing Gold
Dickey has been down on his luck since the day he was born. Flat broke and sick of being looked down on, he meets young socialite Lillian at a wild party. The connection is like a strike of lightning. From a wealthy New York family, this debutante is everything he’s been told he can never have—and the only thing he wants. Determined to win her, he knows the only way to get her parents approval is with cold hard cash. So when a shot at the biggest score of his life comes around, he just can’t refuse…
NOTHING GOLD EXCERPT:
It’s easier than I imagined to sneak into the party. The music is so loud and the crowd so enormous that no one sees me wind my way through the shrubs on the outskirts. The massive estate is far enough away from the city that I had to hitch a ride to get here, and I’ll have to time my exit just right to make the train back to Manhattan.
Brushing off my secondhand suit coat, I enter the party via the back patio. A wide pool is filled with people, most still in their fancy evening wear. My eyes slide past them, searching for the one person at this shindig that I know. I scan past butlers with white gloves holding silver trays covered in champagne glasses, past gleeful dames in short skirts with blood-red lips, and past gents in their glad rags I can tell with one glance cost more dough than I make in a year working at the mill.
When I finally see him, his pinstripe suit, matching fedora, and red pocket square, he’s standing atop the massive staircase on the ledge overlooking the party. Deacon Brewer, the reason I’m here tonight. His hands are stuffed in the pockets of his trousers as he chats up a fella I don’t recognize, along with the dame hanging off his arm. Plastering on an easy grin, I wind my way through the people, helping myself to a glass of bubbly as I head for the stairs. The stone steps are covered in gold confetti, the whole place practically dripping with it. Long, red velvet drapes hang from arched windows, and leafless branches painted gold and draped with crystal beads sit in tall vases in every corner. Nothing has been left un-gilded.
I shake my head at the audacity. Might as well have a neon sign—someone, please rob the joint.
Deacon sees me coming and dismisses himself from his conversation, welcoming me with an open hand.
“Dickey Lewis, glad you could make it, boy,” he offers warmly.
As if I had a choice.
“Of course, Mr. Brewer,” I respond with more warmth than I feel. Truth is that I’m in deep to Deacon after a few bad bets at his club last month, and he opted to make me work it off rather than take it outta my hide. I suppose that makes him clever, but I can’t help the gnawing feeling that this is a debt I may never fully repay. “What’s the score?” I ask, lowering my voice.
Draping an arm across my shoulders, he walks me through the glass doors and into the house. Still crammed with people drinking, dancing, and generally wrecking the joint, he pulls a cigar from his vest pocket with his free hand.
“Upstairs in the den is a lovely Monet, behind which is a very large safe. Cash, some baubles, and a bankbook are inside. I don’t care about the rest; you take what you need. But the bankbook needs to find its way into my hands tomorrow morning by eight am.”
I take a deep breath, rolling my tongue over my teeth before answering, “How am I supposed to get into the safe?”
He barks a deep laugh, slapping me on the back. “Guess you’ll have to get a little creative. Just get in, get out, and don’t let nobody see ya, got it?”
All I can do is nod and watch him swagger away. Sure, I’ve boosted loot before, but always simple jobs, smash and grabs. Nothing like this. What have I gotten myself into this time?
Still, whatever else is in there is mine for the taking, I tell myself. Could be a big pay day, judging by the looks of the place.
I wander casually through the house, trying to look as if I belong while also counting the number of cops and guards watching the area. It’s not as many as I expected. I grab a dark-haired dame by the waist, offering her a charming smile and asking for a dance. We Charleston together for two songs, finally stopping to imbibe more champagne. When I ‘accidently’ stumble into her, she spills the contents of her glass on my jacket, fumbling a wide-eyed apology.
Waving her off with a smile, I hand her my glass, “You take this, and I’ll go find a place to wash up.”
“You could always take a dip in the pool, honey,” she says, batting her eyelashes.
Beside her, a gentleman points up a secondary set of stairs near the front door. “Washroom is up there, I think.”
I mutter a thanks and a promise to return, then make my way up the stairs, continuing to stumble around as if drunk, occasionally opening a door to find a couple necking or a room full of folks smoking the Indian hop in long pipes.
Finally, the thumping of the music fading below me, I make my way to the library. Beyond that, I find the only locked door on the entire floor. Digging into my pocket, I pull out my lock kit, a simple flattened iron jimmy and a hooked pick. Sliding both in the lock, I slide them back and forth, listening for the mechanism inside to release. It doesn’t take long and the door springs open, allowing me to step inside and close it quickly behind me. It’s dark except for the glow of a single lamp atop a massive oak desk, behind which is a tall arched window overlooking the front of the estate. From this spot, I can see the cars lined up along the circular drive, partygoers coming and going in wild abandon. Pulling the pocket watch from my vest, I wipe my fingers across the cracked glass face, checking the time. Only thirty minutes until the train. If I miss it, it’ll be two hours before the next one. Not the end of the world, unless someone notices the lift before I’m gone. That’s a long time to stick around with a pocket fulla stolen goods.
I glance around me, the blood chilling in my veins. Every wall except the one with the window is covered in framed paintings. And I have no idea which one is a Monet.
Scrambling, I begin lifting each, checking the wall behind for any sign of the safe. Finally, on the opposite wall from where I started, I find it. Carefully lifting the heavy canvas free, I set it on the floor and turn my attention to the wall safe. It’s not large, about the size of a bread box with a spinning combination dial in the center. Unsure what else to do, I pull the pocket knife free from my trousers and flick it open, trying to wedge it between the door and the frame. As soon as I do, I know it’s going to be futile. The thing is heavy steel; no way my knife is gonna bust it open. Putting it away, I begin spinning the dial at random, praying I’ll get lucky.
I’m so flustered I don’t hear the door open or the footsteps from behind me until it’s too late.
“It’s my birthday,” a voice offers, making me spin, hands balled into fists to fight my way free from the room.
The dame is tall, her garnet-red hair rolled into bouncy curls and pinned in a messy heap at the back of her neck. Her dress is green, almost the same color as her eyes, and it hugs her slender frame as if it were a second skin. Even the long strings of pearls twined around her neck seems completely natural, not just a decoration but an extension of her. I take a breath, blinking, momentarily stunned. She drapes one hand on her hip, her entire body listing to the side as she points to the safe.
“The combination,” she repeats. “It’s my birthday.”
Finally recovering my voice, I stammer. “I was, uh, just…”
The corners of her mouth turn upward. “Breaking into my father’s safe?”
I don’t know what to say. I feel her in the room, the way one might feel the air change right before a storm, a heaviness that settles in, leaving my soul with a sense of foreboding. My instincts battle inside me. Do I grab her and tie her to a chair, or do I flee? The weight of her gaze makes it impossible to think clearly.
“Relax,” she says, raising a glass I hadn’t noticed her holding to her lips and taking a slow drink. “I’m not calling the guards if that’s what you’re worried about.”
“Oh? You’re just gonna let me crack this safe and walk away with whatever’s inside?”
She shrugs. “It’s not my money. What do I care?”
I lick my lips, sizing her up. A spoiled little rich girl who wants to stick it to Daddy. I’ve seen a few of those in my day. I can work with this—if I can get my head back on straight. It’s not like me to get so flustered by a dame, not even a high-quality one like this.
“Besides…” She sets the glass on the desk and saunters toward me. “It’s not like we don’t have enough.”
I catch a hint of her perfume in the air when she brushes by me, lavender and something else I can’t quite place. Taking the dial in her hand, she spins the knob until the door finally clicks, then she steps back, giving me a go-ahead gesture.
I hesitate, flicking glances at the bare skin where her neck meets her shoulder, at the creamy whiteness of her skin, before settling my eyes on her face. “What’s your name, doll?”
She looks down, sheepishly at first, but then raises just her eyes to look at me with an expression of bold defiance. “I’ll tell you mine if you tell me yours.”
I swallow, considering her offer. She’s already gotten a good look at me, enough to rat me out to the cops. The look on her face is one of challenge, I realize. She’s daring me to trust her.
“Dickey,” I say, pulling the flat cap off my head and holding it over my heart as I bow to her. “Dickey Lewis, at your service, Miss?”
“Lillian Rose Duke,” she answers. “But my friends call me Lilly.”
Replacing my hat, I grab the safe handle and twist, pulling open the heavy door. Grabbing a large wooden box first, I hold it out to her. Moving back, I grab two stacks of fresh bills and stuff them in the pockets of my suitcoat. Finding the bankbook last, I tuck it into the back of my pants before pulling my shirt and jacket over it.
I spin to Lilly, watching as she upends the box, spilling jewelry onto the desk in a pile. She picks through it, finally just scooping it all into her hand and sauntering over to me. Getting so close I feel the warmth of her, she grabs the lapel of my jacket, sliding the gold and stones into the inside pocket.
“Give these to your girl, Dickey Lewis.”
She releases my lapel, but doesn’t step away. Instead, she leans forward. Thinking she’s going to kiss me, I straighten in anticipation, but she just trails her fingers along my collar until she’s cupping the back of my neck.
“I ain’t got no girl,” I admit, my heart pounding behind my ribs.
“Well, isn’t that a shame?” she says, her lips a hair’s breadth from mine.
Unable to resist, I close the final distance between us, clutching her by the waist as I urge her lips to mine. I’ve never tasted gold before, but I imagine this is what it would be like—champagne, honey, and nerves of steel. When she finally pulls away, I’m gasping. Tugging tugs the white linen handkerchief from my pocket, she wipes my face, then hers, of her smeared lipstick before returning the hankie to its place.
“I hope to see you around, Dickey Lewis.”
With that, she spins on her heel and heads for the door, listening for a moment before pulling it open and stepping out. The room is instantly colder, the air thinner. I can finally breathe, can think.
As I slink from the party and disappear into the shadows, making my way down the street to the train station, I can’t force the sight of her from my mind, or the taste of her from my lips.
Even if it takes every penny in my pocket and every breath in my body, I will see Lillian Rose Duke again.
Sherry D. Ficklin is a full time writer from Colorado where she lives with her husband, four kids, two dogs, and a fluctuating number of chickens and house guests. A former military brat, she loves to travel and meet new people. She can often be found browsing her local bookstore with a large white hot chocolate in one hand and a towering stack of books in the other. That is, unless she’s on deadline at which time she, like the Loch Ness monster, is only seen in blurry photographs.
Thea is a freshman at UConn and has the world on her shoulders as the last game she is not playing up to par. Even though they win and going to the tournament, she is off in her game. Never does she expect to meet Keaton Lowe, especially in her locker room. She has no clue who he is, but she has peaked his interest.
Keaton sees a hidden domme in Thea and he plans to help guide her through the process of embracing who she is. With a rock star schedule and a heavy schedule for March Madness, will they get time to explore each other and what happens when they do?
This was a different read for me as it had to do with a domme. I thought the author navigated Thea’s journey wonderfully and enjoyed the basketball angle as well. Keaton is a charmer, he makes you curious to see what happens next between them. Great read.
When Noah “Hack” Chambers lost his old lady, he didn’t believe he would ever find a woman he loved again. When his club orders him to ride, a way of freeing himself of the past he does. He doesn’t expect to meet Pru and it is only a matter of time before he is sleeping in her bed and living with her. That is until is club calls and he breaks Pru’s heart without any contact.
Pru Turner vowed that she would never follow in her mothers footsteps, her mother an alcoholic who switches sleeps with anything that moves. Pru thought she had found the man for her in Hack, when he left and at the time she didn’t know she was pregnant. When she notifies Hack of the baby, he is right back in her life but she doesn’t trust him. Hack knows he screwed up but with a rival club targeting Pru and his need to protect her, he pulls her close. Can Hack prove to Pru he can be the man she needs him to be.
Wonderful book. I loved this story and understood where Hack was coming from. Pru was a trooper, I felt for her and was not sure I could be so positive with what was swirling around her. Since this is a series I didn’t read in order, but it was fine. Excellent entertainment.
A bit about me, Autumn Winchester! I’m Colorado born, and love to read and write dark romances, among other genres. My writing style is different with twists, turns and surprises at every corner. I write in a way that gives you just enough detail to make you want more and in a way that is not seen anywhere else!
Gidget Etheridge is back home where she only has bitter memories of the man she loved breaking her heart. Fresh from divorce and with her young son in tow, Gidget doesn’t realize her estranged father and brother had betrayed the Grim Bastards MC where she grew up around and another enemy as well.
Layton “Smoke” Roundtree loved Gifget with every fiber of his soul but he made a choice to let Gidget go so she could live her dream. He has second guessed his choice since the day she left. Now Gidget is back and he knows he he can never let her go again. He realizes this means her son Parker too, but Gidget is weary of trusting Smoke again. With a rival club putting Gidget and her son in danger, Smoke pulls them close to protect them.
I just stumbled upon this series and it is fantastic. Smoke is a tough man, the only person he is soft with is Gidget and her son. It awakens he brooding beast he has become since they broke up and he becomes a remarkable man in doing so. Look forward to more in this series.