Beautiful Finale

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Enjoy this sample from the fourth House of Archer rock’n’roll romance novel

By Raine Thomas

Jada wished the evening would never end. It seemed all too soon that everyone walked out to their cars to head home.

She merely headed to her car.

Home, sweet home, she thought with a sigh as she settled into the driver’s seat. When she was sure the rest of the band had gone and no one else in the parking lot was paying her any attention, she lowered the sun visor and looked at her reflection in the vanity mirror.

“Great job,” she told herself. “You busted your ass for this. You deserve it. Now stick with it and don’t ever fucking give up.”

Once upon a time, she would have felt sorry for herself that she was the only one she could turn to for support and encouragement, especially for such a huge moment. Now she chose to look at the bright side. At least she wouldn’t ever let herself down.

The restaurant closed an hour later. When the night manager turned the lock and spotted her sitting in her car, he frowned and headed over to her. She obligingly rolled down her window.

“Hey, Nico,” she greeted him.

“Hi, J,” he said, stopping a few feet from her car. “Been awhile.”

“Yeah, it has. Listen, I need a favor.”

“J…”

“Please, Nico? I swear it’s just for tonight. I was here celebrating my new job.”

That had the discomfort easing from Nico’s expression. “Is that right?”

“It is. I’ll only be mobile another couple weeks until I get my first paycheck. ‘Til then I just want to make sure I’m somewhere safe to sleep at night. This is a well-lit parking lot and I know you won’t call the cops on me.”

“Well…”

The faint sound of a throat clearing had Nico glancing over the roof of her car. Jada looked out the passenger side window to see who had interrupted. When she saw a camo T-shirt tucked into a pair of khaki cargo pants, her spine stiffened. Xander was too tall for her to see his face but there was no mistaking that spectacular body.

Had he heard their conversation?

“Hey, man,” Xander said to Nico. “You work here?”

“Yes, sir.”

“I think I left my phone earlier. Can you help me out?”

“Of course.”

Nico immediately turned and walked back to the restaurant, fishing his keys out of his pocket as he went. Jada forced herself to stay calm. Xander had been standing on the far side of her car and that window hadn’t been open. He probably hadn’t heard anything, she assured herself.

She heard the sound of his heavy boots crunching gravel as he strolled over to her side of the car. It was impossible not to notice how gracefully he moved, like a powerful predator. Her hands gripped the steering wheel for no good reason other than she didn’t know what else to do with them. She swallowed audibly as Xander placed a hand on the roof of her car and leaned over so he was looking in her window. He was so close she could smell the mouth-watering scent of his aftershave.

“Hey there, Jada,” he said casually. “Or should I call you J?”

Fuck. He’d heard everything.

Beautiful Finale

A rock band. A reality show. A marriage on the rocks.

In the span of four months, Lily Montgomery has gone from touring with her best friend to marrying him. It feels like someone has stomped on the gas pedal that is her life. Right now she is more than ready to pump the brakes.

But that’s not how it works in the world of show business. Her new husband is off filming and recording more often than he is at home. He sees more of his beautiful co-star than his own wife. Lily is finding it harder and harder to distinguish between performing and reality, adding more stress to a marriage that the tabloids already wager won’t last the year.

Thank God for Jada Morgan.

Lily’s new assistant quickly becomes indispensable, covering The Void’s social media while Lily pursues her own writing. When Lily learns that Jada is temporarily rooming with Void guitarist, Xander Phillips, she isn’t concerned. Xander has hard-and-fast rules when it comes to relationships with women. The only way he’ll break Jada’s heart is if he breaks all of his rules.

Even with Jada’s support, Lily struggles to adjust to her new life. From her own personal stalker and ongoing family drama to the constant bombardment from the media, she’s quickly reaching her breaking point. She’s about to learn if marrying a rock star will result in a beautiful finale…or in absolute disaster.

Where you can get it:

Raine Thomas

Raine Thomas, new adult, young adult and romance

is the award-winning author of bestselling Young Adult and New Adult fiction. Known for character-driven stories that inspire the imagination, Raine has signed with multiple award-winning producer Chase Chenowith of Back Fence Productions to bring her popular Daughters of Saraqael trilogy to the big screen.

Raine is a proud indie author who is living the dream. When she isn’t writing or glued to e-mail or social networking sites, Raine can usually be found vacationing with her husband and daughter on one of Florida’s beautiful beaches or crossing the border to visit with her Canadian friends and relatives.

Get to know more about Raine on

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Why that genre?

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Photo by Wes Hicks on Unsplash

Monday musings by your favorite bestselling authors

Readers often associate their favorite writers with a genre: romance, mystery, thriller, science-fiction or fantasy, to name just a few.

Why did the author choose that genre? Your favorite bestsellers answer that question this week.

Alan McDermott

Action thrillers

When I pick up a book I want it to keep me gripped from start to finish and be something I can relate to. I couldn’t see myself delivering that with a science-fiction or romance novel. I could try, but I know I would soon get bored with it. If the subject matter doesn’t interest me, I can hardly expect my readers to become engrossed. I think it is important that you write about what you love.

D.G. Torrens

Romance, memoir and poetry

I write about what interests me personally. If I won’t read it then I certainly will not write about it. It is important for me to love what I do. Therefore, I apply it to what genre I write in.

Samreen Ahsan

Historical fantasy and paranormal romance

I write what I enjoy writing most, keep the readers busy. Someday, when I itch to write science fiction, I’d love to write that. Regardless of what genre it is, I want my readers to keep guessing.

Mary Doyle

Mystery, fantasy and erotica

If I were traditionally published, my biggest fear would be a publisher that insisted that I write in only one genre. That would be the end of my writing career. I’ve written mystery, urban fantasy, erotica and memoir and someday soon I’m going to write some dystopian fiction … maybe zombie stuff, maybe some other end of the world thing. I won’t write in one genre and you can’t make me!

Raine Thomas

Young adult and new adult fiction

I write romance across multiple sub-genres (YA, contemporary, sports, Sci-Fi, fantasy). I’ve always been a romantic, so my writing will always reflect that part of me. I also love diversity and exploring new things, so branching into the sub-genres allows me to explore that too. Who knows where the Muse will lead me next?

Toby Neal

Mystery, thriller and romance

I think characters are most important in writing, because no matter what genre you are in, people want to follow a heroine’s journey as they develop. So while I mostly write mystery/thriller because I love puzzles and surprises and a lot of tension, I am always writing that character arc of development. Over and over, whether it’s a thriller, a romance, or my own memoir. Riveting characters in a process of growth is what keeps readers coming back.

Gae-Lynn Woods

Mystery

I’ve always been drawn to stories with multiple layers and characters who grow and change. I love the challenge of figuring out “who done it” in another writer’s work, and seeing if I can keep the reader guessing in my own. I end up creating the characters I want to know more about and writing the stories I’d want to read.

DelSheree Gladden

Young adult, new adult, romance, fantasy and more

I write in multiple genres because I read just about every genre and like to try new things in my writing. When an idea comes to me, I go with whatever genre seems to fit that story and let it develop organically. The character’s journey is more important to me than following genre conventions.

Caleb Pirtle III

Thriller, literary fiction and memoir

I generally write historical thrillers or historical mysteries because I prefer living in the past. There is a certain feeling of the unknown and unexplained in an earlier time, especially when my stories have a World War II backdrop. Evil has a face. And the night holds suspense with every tick of the clock. It’s difficult for me to write suspense when all my hero has to do is pull out a cell phone can dial 9-11 if he’s in trouble. I can research the 1930s and 1940s, and every incident I find hides a mystery just waiting to be found and told.

Next week: more authors on why they chose their genre, including David C. Cassidy, Scott Bury, Seb Kirby and more!

And happy Canada Day to all our Canadian readers!

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Win-A-Book Wednesday: Return of the Ascendant, by Raine Thomas

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Return of the Ascendant_ebooksm

Win an e-copy of bestseller Raine Thomas’ latest novel, Return of the Ascendant. Just leave an answer in the Comments to:

Who (or what) is your favorite Sci-Fi villain and why?” 

The author will choose the most interesting answer.

Return of the Ascendant

This is a New Adult novel recommended for ages 17+.

Expecting to enjoy another typical college night at a frat party with friends, Kyra Vaughn’s plans derail when she’s almost killed…twice. Her savior, a tall, sexy stranger who calls himself TaeDane, claims that he’s the personal bodyguard for the Ascendant of Alametria. She’s convinced he’s crazy.

Especially when he insists that she’s the Ascendant.

With dark enemies hunting her down, Kyra has no choice but to trust her supposed bodyguard. Ty vows to help her remember her past and return her safely to Alametria, but someone seems intent on interfering, challenging his abilities at every turn.

As Kyra’s memories emerge, she remembers that Ty is more to her than he’s let on…much more than he’s allowed to be. She’ll also discover that there are many things about her planet and herself that she’d rather forget. In the end, she’ll have to make a choice: cling to the life she knows, or risk it all to become the person she’s destined to be.

Find Return of the Ascendant on:

Visit Raine Thomas’

And follow Raine on Twitter @Raine_Thomas  

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Focus Friday: For Everly, by Raine Thomas

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EverlyecoversmallThis week’s Friday Focus comes from Raine Thomas’s For Everly, a New Adult romance.

Thirty minutes later, she finally arrived at the restaurant. Between traffic and the unfamiliar area of town, it took her longer than she expected to get there. She thought she had given herself extra time, but she was still five minutes late. When she pulled up, she found herself at a valet stand. Rolling down her window, she flagged the valet who eyed her car as though it had just broken down at his feet. He approached with notable reluctance.

Waving at the twenty-dollar valet fee posted on a nearby folding sign, she asked, “Is there self-parking?”

“No, ma’am,” he replied stiffly.

She swallowed and nodded, getting out of her car so he could park it. She only had twenty dollars in cash, and she had intended to pay for her lunch with it. She knew the bank account was low until she got paid again on Friday, but she’d have to risk debiting her meal. Why hadn’t she thought to set some parameters when Cole suggested the restaurant?

Her headache ballooned as she hurried through the front door of the restaurant and looked around without spotting Cole. Frowning, she approached the maître d.

“Miss Wallace?” he greeted her.

Surprised, she nodded.

“Welcome. Mr. Parker is waiting at your table. It would be my pleasure to escort you there. May I take your coat?”

Damn. She probably couldn’t even afford the free bread at this place.

Giving the maître d a wan smile, she shrugged out of her coat, putting her gloves in the pockets and wrapping her scarf around one of her purse straps. She was sure she was imagining it, but she swore the maître d held her Target-brand garment a few inches away from his body as he turned to hand it off to whoever guarded the coat room.

Shifting uncomfortably when he gave her a quick once-over and lingered disapprovingly on her jeans, she took a deep breath and followed him into the dining room. There wasn’t anything she could do about how she was dressed, was there?

Lord, what a hot mess this was.

As she spotted Cole across the dining room at a table with a beautiful view of the outside terrace, another thought occurred to her. How should she greet him? Should she shake his hand since this was a business meeting? Go in for the awkward hug since she was good friends with his brother?

Bow because he looked like a god in his simple black V-neck sweater and gray pants?

She caught his gaze when she was still about ten feet from the table. A variety of expressions crossed his features, so many that she couldn’t read them all. She definitely caught irritation, though, and was puzzled when he ended up smiling.

OhGodOhGodOhGod…

He stood up. The maître d deposited her with a slight bow, so she ruled out that form of greeting. Then it was just her and Cole.

“Hello, Everly,” he said, his voice as smooth as a buttered biscuit.

“Hi.”

Had that been her voice that came out all breathy? She prayed it hadn’t sounded as ridiculous as she thought.

She started to lift her right hand for a shake, then realized he was tilting in for the awkward hug. To avoid hitting him in the crotch, she adjusted her trajectory. He smoothly used his left hand to continue her forward motion so that her hand ended up encircling his neck.

Then before she knew what was happening, her lips were pressed against his.

About the book

This is a New Adult novel recommended for ages 17+ due to mature subject matter.

Determined to overcome a dark and tragic past, college student Everly Wallace is only months away from earning her degree in physical therapy. She’s consumed with school, caring for her ailing grandfather, and figuring out how to pay the next bill. The last thing she wants is a relationship, but it just might be the one thing she needs.

Major league pitcher Cole Parker hasn’t fought for anything in his life. He went from a privileged upbringing to a multimillion dollar All-Star career. But when his pitching shoulder starts to give him trouble at only twenty-four years old, he faces the possibility of his injury becoming public knowledge and costing him everything.

In a desperate bid to save his career, Cole decides to hire someone to treat his injury, someone who will keep things off the record and out of the media. He finds the perfect solution in Everly. As mysterious as she is beautiful, she provides an enticing distraction from his pain.

Soon, physical therapy is the last thing on his mind. When an act of betrayal brings the truths they both fear to light, Cole will have to fight for the first time in his life…not just for his career, but for Everly’s love.

Visit Raine’s

And follow her on Twitter @Raine_Thomas

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EXCERPT: Forbidden Call by Martha Bourke – FREE Today Only!

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Forbidden-Call-FINAL-201x300FORBIDDEN CALL – FREE TODAY at Amazon

Materializing just outside Victrixa’s office, Ana stopped and listened for a moment. She could hear Victrixa’s voice down the hall, so she gleamed in, held the camera in her hand and gleamed it behind a crack in the plaster. She pocketed the other camera and gleamed back to the closet at the mansion.

And found herself standing face to face with SE.

He leaned against the doorjamb. “Hi. Have a good time?”

Damnit!

Her mouth dried up instantly. “I…”

But her mate didn’t say anything. He just turned and walked out of the closet.

She followed him. “SE?”

His back to her, he shook his head. “You know what? Don’t…don’t tell me where you’ve been. I’m not sure I want to hear it.”

“What? Like you have to know where I am every second of the day now? I was gone an hour!”

“No.” He turned around slowly. “You weren’t just gone an hour. You were gone and you left fully armed!”

Oh, God. This was so not good. This isn’t what she’d wanted. “I went to see my tech guy to pick up some equipment I thought we could use.”

“And then where did you go?”

“What?”

“I sincerely doubt the pistol was meant for your tech guy.”

Her chest was heaving like she couldn’t get enough air and her legs were slowly going numb. But she would not lie to her mate. “I put a mini cam in Victrixa’s office.”

The sound of his roar and the crunch that followed were so loud she wasn’t sure what they were at first.

“Damnit!” SE yelled, shaking out the hand that just seriously injured the wall.

Ana’s body went cold and she started to shake all over. Only she wasn’t afraid of him. She was afraid he would leave. The thought was so raw it made her nauseous. She covered her eyes with her hands and cried.

 

SE flexed his hand a few times and looked over at his female.

“Aw, come here.”

“I’m really sorry,” she said, collapsing into his arms.

“I know,” he said gently.

“I don’t…I’m not…”

“Shh, it’s okay. I’m sorry.” Sorry was right. He could write a freaking book. How to Scare the Shit Out of Your Female in Three Easy Steps. He’d gotten so damn wound up after searching the house for her that he’d gone off like a bomb. Getting a handle on New Breed instincts was turning out to be a real bastard. He picked her up and carried her to the bed, then sat her down on his lap and waited for her to cry it out. When she lifted her head up off his shoulder, he dried her cheeks with his fingers and waited for her to speak.

She stared down at her lap and fidgeted with her hands. “I didn’t think. I should have known that when you woke up, you’d miss me and worry. I just…”

“Hey, I get it. You’ve never had to think about anyone else before. It’s a big change. It’s just…I thought you were with X, so when no one knew where you were, I lost it. Why, Ana? Why would you risk going anywhere near her?”

“I don’t know. I knew the job would only take a few seconds.”

“Seconds? You didn’t place the camera?”

“No, I did.”

“But that takes time and tools.”

Ana shook her head. “Watch.”

She opened her hand and the TV remote appeared in her palm.

SE jumped. “Ihkweea, did you just gleam that?”

She nodded.

“How long have you been able to do that?”

“Actually, I don’t know. Last month, sometime, I was starving from fighting all night, but I didn’t have any cash. Then I gleamed a Snickers from a vending machine without meaning to.”  They both grinned. “That’s the first time it happened. I wasn’t hiding it, honest. I never really use it. So, see, it was just a few seconds.”

She put her hand in her pocket and brought out a mini cam. “I brought the other one back here.”

SE slid his hands along her jaw. “Repeat after me. I, Ana Mata, will never go near my batshit crazy mother again.”

Ana smiled. “I, Ana Aguilar, will…what you said.”

Hearing her use his father’s surname made him so proud, he could have wept right there. Shifters didn’t usually bother with formalities like taking a mate’s name, but he knew what she meant. She was saying she was his. He pulled her to him. Goddamn, he couldn’t have stayed mad at her if he tried.

“Oh, your hand,” Ana said, lifting it to inspect it.

“It’s fine. You know what? I slept through breakfast. Can I interest you in some lunch, female?”

“Hell, yes. Just let me change real quick.”

He looked at the wall where he’d hit it. “And then I think I should probably fix Dimitri’s wall.”

FORBIDDEN CALL – FREE TODAY at Amazon

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Martha

Martha Bourke grew up in Burlington, Vermont, often considered a hub of “free thinking.” She was encouraged to write and be creative at a very young age. Martha also had her father’s talent for languages, which later became her career. She spent fifteen years creating and teaching in foreign language programs for young children. She continued to write on the side, trying out a variety of fiction genres. Then she discovered paranormal romance. She was hooked!

Martha and her husband of thirteen years have carved out their own little piece of Vermont in the Massachusetts countryside. When not writing, she loves spending time with her animals, listening to good music, and reading. Her new release, Forbidden Call, is the first book in a new adult paranormal romance series called the New Breed Novels. Look for Book 2 in the new adult series at the end of the summer. Jaguar Hunter, Book 3 in the Jaguar Sun series will be out in early 2014.

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