Link of the Week – Guide to Erotic Fiction

February 11, 2014

Need a little clarification on what’s erotic fiction? How about the levels of heat and varying subgenres? Harlequin has a great, easy-to-read flowchart, a glossary of erotic lingo, and some wonderful book examples to help you navigate the spicier side of reading. Check it out! Promise…you won’t blush.

Harlequin’s Share Your Passion for Erotic Fiction:

http://www.harlequin.com/store.html?cid=3448&om_rid=NslKAH&om_mid=_BS$a$BB84IuOjz

Harlequin’s Erotic Fiction Flowchart:

http://www.harlequin.com/store.html?cid=3450

Not a Harlequin book, but if you are looking for a hot quickie…

HarloweWilde_KittyKittyBangBang800


Claimed By the Beast Nocturne Cravings

December 27, 2013

 

 

 

 

 

9781460325254

Buy Link Kindle Claimed By the Beast

Buy Link Nook Claimed By the Beast

 

Available January 1

Dr. Daphne Panetta is desperate to find a cure for a virus that turns its victims into zombie werewolves. Infected Konstantin Gevaudan should be nothing more than a test subject, but the only thing Daphne fears more than the beast within him is her own intense attraction to the virile man himself….

When the research facility where he’s being held goes up in flames, Konstantin has no choice but to take Daphne on the run with him. For the desire burning between them can mean only one thing: she is his true mate. But how can he claim her without changing her—forever?

 

Excerpt:

 

Where the others were seemingly mindless killing machines, there was a self-awareness in his eyes. He was a predator, to be sure, as ravenous as the rest of them. What made him terrifying was his cunning, his obviously human logic.

And this one had a name—Konstantin Gevaudan.

Obviously aware of her scrutiny, he stepped forward, prowling toward the observatory as if she were the one on display.

The shadows fell away like a cloak, the bright sodium lights blaring down on his massive form. He stood, rising up bipedal and perfect, with none of the abnormalities of the others except for those eyes blazing that strange electric blue, like an LED bulb. Form followed function, each part of his body designed with the same purpose in mind—to be the most efficient killing machine. Thickly muscled, but his tread was light, graceful. His movements were fluid synchronicity. In fact, he was horrifyingly beautiful.

He knew it, too. The beast stopped under a particularly focused shaft of light, displaying himself for her. The sleek pitch of his silky pelt, the sculpted planes of his musculature so much like a human’s but still so alien, and the sly, knowing look in his eyes.

Daphne found herself almost hypnotized by the creature, unable to look away. Maybe he was somehow part King Cobra and he’d caught her in a death sway. Her rational, educated brain told her this was more information than they’d ever been able to gather before. No matter how uncomfortable it was, how ugly, or even how she ached for Bethany, she had to keep him engaged. The cameras were still recording.

Although, the primal, basic animal part of her brain screamed for her to break the spell, to flee. To hide away so his horrible eyes couldn’t dig down into the meat of her, into her fear. The faint beep from the lapel of her lab coat vaguely registered—she was excreting pheromones at dangerous levels. The infected could scent them even through all the barriers.

The throng of the deformed, snarling infected were suddenly in frenzy mode, throwing themselves against the electrified walls, their claws scraping down the enchanted glass as they struggled to get at her—prey.

A sound that Daphne first thought was an earthquake rumbled deep, until she realized it was coming from it—him—Konstantin.

His muzzle retracted in a snarl, revealing supernaturally straight white teeth that looked more at home on a barracuda than a wolf. She shuddered and his lips twisted farther. He turned his great head slowly toward the wolves, as if focusing the sites of a weapon.

The bass sound began to build, but it wasn’t until the space around him trembled with its might did the noise erupt from him in a deafening roar that was itself the hand of a vengeful god smiting the wretched masses.

Infected wolves yelped and whined as their ears bled and it seemed their nervous systems had been paralyzed by the sound. They dropped to their bellies, their yips quickly fading.

Daphne prayed to any gods that were listening they’d caught a digital imprint of the roar and could reproduce it. It could be the weapon they needed if they couldn’t synthesize a cure.

His attention snapped back to her, his appraisal blatant, intense, and obviously human. She refused to look away or back down, even though her adrenaline spiked again.

The beast lifted his nose to the air with purpose, his too sharp eyes still focused on her. As if that scent were some delectable sweet she’d prepared especially for him. He stalked forward closing the space, coming as close to the observatory bubble as any of them had ever dared.

That primal part of her screamed at her to run and the logical part agreed, but she stood her ground. She knew he could smell her fear like a perfume, but that was the difference between humans and beasts. Daphne refused to be controlled by her lizard brain. She was a rational being in charge of her own actions.

The only thing between them now was the glass. She swallowed hard, her saliva thick as a wad of cotton in her throat. Daphne’s fingers hovered over the button that would slam the panic protocol wall between the enclosure and the observatory.

His regard was as intense as it had been before, but instead of staring her down, he sized her up. His gaze lingered on her breasts.

Undeniably male, and human.

Suddenly where there’d been a beast, there was a man. She jerked back from the glass, unable to control the visceral reaction to the intrinsic need to put more space between them. If she’d thought the beast was horrifically beautiful, the man was even more so.

Daphne could see the beast looking out at her from underneath his skin.

What beautiful skin it was—smooth and unblemished, like alabaster. He was as pale as the moon, the silvery sheen of his flesh utterly surreal. His powerful body seemed compacted now, coiled and waiting to strike. This creature was still every inch a predator.

Her gaze was drawn down from his broad shoulders, his pecs, his defined abs, and lower still to that ridged triangulation of muscle that directed her study to the last place she wanted to look.

Yes, every long, thick, hard inch of predator.

Already high on adrenaline, her body responded in kind. Fear and lust induced many of the same bodily responses. Clinically, it was a simple matter of biology, as basic as breathing.

Only her breathing wasn’t basic. It shuddered out of her in staccato bursts, her lips plumped, nipples tightened, heartbeat thundered, and her thighs clenched hard against the electric jolt of desire that stabbed through her.

Daphne jerked her eyes back to his face—it looked like something that belonged in an art museum. Or maybe it was the face of the Devil himself, with those damned infected blue eyes staring back at her.

His mouth curved in a scimitar of a smile, lifting his head as the animal had done. Scenting the air—her desire.

Even though he looked like a man, he wasn’t. She knew the bio suit worked. He’d infected Bethany, ripped her humanity away from her not on instinct, not because no matter what he ate he was always starving, but because he simply wanted to.

Guilt flooded her again, disgust at her body’s reaction to the monster.

His head cocked to the side, as if he could hear her thoughts and found them strange. He splayed his hand on the glass, the electric current there having no effect on him. Or if he felt it at all, he demonstrated no reaction.

Her hand rose of its own accord, slowly like moving through water, and settled palm flat against the spot where his rested. She wanted to jerk her hand away, he was a monster. He was a test subject. He was the enemy.


MuseTracks Guest – Blythe Gifford – Movie as Muse

November 9, 2012

We have a special, special guest today. Please help me give a warm welcome to Blythe Gifford, author of medieval romance.

Blythe Gifford – Movie as Muse

Thanks for having me today.  I’m talking movies, so chime in at the end for a chance to win a copy of my new book.

Recently, an enthusiastic new friend asked when my book was going to be made into a movie.  I resisted the opportunity to launch into all the business reasons that was unlikely, because the truth is, I must be one of the few writers on the planet who does not long to see her book on the silver screen.

That’s not to say the inspiration doesn’t run the other way, though.  Every book of mine has a playlist and movie soundtracks can be perfect for sweeping me away into the world of the story.  When I first crossed the border to set a story in Scotland, I leaned on the emotional power of music from the iconic movies, “Braveheart” and “Rob Roy” to get me in the proper mood.

The actual story on the screen, however, rarely triggers anything in my work, but I must admit a buried movie inspiration for the excerpt I’m going to share today.  “The Mask of Zorro,” 1998, has a wonderful swordfight between Catherine Zeta-Jones and Antonio Banderas.  It comes early in the film, when they are immediate antagonists.  The confrontation crackles, as a romance writer would say, with sexual tension.

While my hero and heroine and story share nothing else with those characters, I think that fight must have served as an unconscious muse for following scene.

First, a little setup.   RETURN OF THE BORDER WARRIOR, a current release from Harlequin Historicals, launches my trilogy about the Brunson Clan, a family of Reivers on the Scottish Borders during the early Tudor era.  CAPTIVE OF THE BORDER LORD follows in January 2013, and TAKEN BY THE BORDER REBEL in March 2013.

RETURN OF THE BORDER WARRIOR is the story of John, the youngest son, who returns home after years of serving as a “big brother” to the young Scottish king.  John is a man with something to prove, both to himself and to his family.  As the only blue-eyed Brunson, he’s always felt as if he didn’t belong.  Now, he no longer wants to.  As soon as he enforces the king’s command for peace, he plans to return to his life at court and leave the valley of his birth for the last time.

But first, he must persuade Cate Gilnock to release his family from their promise to avenge her father’s death.  Cate is a woman fierce as a warrior, but behind her eyes John senses vulnerability and secrets she refuses to share.  Bit by bit, he falls in love with her, and with each step, he is drawn back into the life he thought he had left behind forever.  Because of Cate, he discovers he is more like the rest of his family than he thought until, finally, he must decide:  Is he truly a Brunson?  Or is he the King’s man after all?

In this excerpt from Chapter One, John has come across Cate, practicing her sword fighting against her own shadow.  He thinks to play with her, easily besting her sword with his dagger, but the woman proves more capable than he imagined…

He jumped just in time to escape a touch.  Now was not the time for distractions.  He had expected a playful joust.  Instead, he faced a warrior.

He swung high, but she held up her sword, turned sideways, to block his stroke.  A clever move, but lifting the two-handed sword had strained her strength and when she lowered it, her arms shook.

Seizing on her weakness, he attacked and they crossed blades again.  Prepared now, he leveraged his strength against her sword.  Though she kept her grip, he pushed the blade away, coming close enough to feel her chest rise and fall, nearly touching his.

Close enough that his mind wandered, careless of the blades, thinking that under her tunic and vest, she had breasts.  Now he could see her face, the angles of it, sharp and cleanly sculpted as her sword.  Yet thick lashes edged her brown eyes, disguising some of the hatred there.

“Surrender now?”

Panting, she shook her head.  Yet her lips parted, tempting him to take them.  She was, after all, a woman.  A kiss would be mightier than a sword.

He pushed her sword arm down, pulled her to him, and took her lips.

She yielded for a breath, no more.

But it was long enough for him to lose his thoughts, to forget she held a sword and remember only that she was a woman, breasts soft against his chest, smelling of heather…

In a flash, she turned stiff as a sword and leaned away, though her lips did not leave his, so he thought she only teased.

When he felt the point of a dirk at his throat, he knew she did not.

“Let me go,” she said, her lips still close that they moved over his. “Or you’ll be bleeding and I’ll leave you to it, I swear.”

He eased his arms from her back and she pushed him away, wiped her mouth, and spat into the dirt.

He touched the scratch she’d left on his neck, grateful she had not drawn blood.

Her eyes, which he had thought to turn soft with pleasure, narrowed, hard with fury.

“It’s a Brunson you’re facing,” he said, trying a smile.  “Not a Storwick.”

She raised both sword and dirk, the larger wobbling in her grip.  “It’s a man I’m facing who thinks what I want is of no consequence if it interferes with his privileges and pleasures.”

Had he imagined the echo of the bedchamber in her voice?  No more.

He raised his eyebrows, opened his arms and made a slight bow.  “A thousand pardons.”  Words as insincere as the feelings behind them.

She frowned.  “You are a stranger here, so you know no better.  And because you are a Brunson, I’ll let you keep your head, but I’ll warn you just once.  You will not do that again.  Ever.”

She lowered her sword, slowly.

You are a strangerShe was the Brunson, besting him with a sword, displacing him at the family table.  His temper rose.  “And what if I do?”

The blade rose, this time, not pointed at his throat, but between his legs.  “If you do, you won’t have to worry about bedding a woman ever again.”

He swallowed, gingerly, his body on fire.  Only because she had challenged him.  Nothing more.  No man could desire such a woman.

“Then have no worries on that score, Catie Gilnock,” he said, flush with anger.  “When next I bed a woman, it most certainly will not be you.”

So, talk about movies!  What are your favorites?  A lucky reader who comments on today’s blog will be randomly selected to win a signed copy of RETURN OF THE BORDER WARRIOR.  

The lucky winner randomly chose is Cynthia! Congrats!

Blythe Gifford has been known for medieval romances featuring characters born on the wrong side of the royal blanket. Now, she’s launching a trilogy set on the turbulent Scottish Borders of the early Tudor era, starting with RETURN OF THE BORDER WARRIOR, November 2012, Harlequin Historical.  CAPTIVE OF THE BORDER LORD will follow in January 2013, and TAKEN BY THE BORDER REBEL in March 2013.  The Chicago Tribune has called her work “the perfect balance between history and romance.”  Visit her at www.blythegifford.com, www.facebook.com/BlytheGifford, or http://www.twitter.com/BlytheGifford.

Photo credits.  Cover used with permission.  Author photo by Jennifer Girard.