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Guest Post by Shari Elder about Unnatural Allies

Unnatural Allies (Shifting Alliances, #2 by Shari Elder)

Thank you so much for having me on your blog. I’m very excited to share Unnatural Allies, Book Two in the paranormal romance series, Shifting Alliances. Although part of a series, it can be read as a stand-alone novel.

Unnatural Allies (Shifting Alliances Book 2)
By: Shari Elder
Genre: M/F Paranormal Romance
Release Date:
Cover Artist: Jay Aheer

Blurb

A World in Transition
Violent fae encroachment on shifter land is heating up. With death tolls rising, the impossible becomes necessary – an alliance among predator and prey shifters.

An Inconceivable Love
Nicca Baron, lone wolf and wolf clan beta, finds herself under the command of Evan Grant, the rat alpha. In different circumstances, he’d be dinner. Or so her wolf keeps reminding her. Evan proves to be a perceptive leader, a skilled fighter and irresistible to her lonely heart.

To rule the rats, you have to rule the pack. Evan is a whiz at managing people and groups. Until he finds himself leading a mission made up of every single large animal that thrives on rat flesh. And not the kind between his legs. The only bright light is Nicca. Her storm gray eyes miss nothing, her brilliant mind comprehends everything and her succulent curves offer the perfect place for a rat to nestle.

An Impossible Future
In each other’s arms, Nicca and Evan discover love and a new perspective in an off-kilter world. But a wolf cannot mate with a rat, no matter the strength of the human attraction.

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Excerpt

Evan had never seen Nicca look frightened before. Those silver eyes expanded into saucers, and they were still beautiful. He wanted to wrap her in his arms, just hold her close as they both tried to process a world spinning out of control. Even his rat wanted to comfort her.
She was getting under skin and fur.
The last leaves hung limp on the branches, resisting winter’s pull. Away from the sidhe, the air had warmed, although the sky retained a grayish winter hue. Shifter bodies held heat, keeping them comfortable in the most brutal frost. Evan burned hot from continuous movement, the too frequent adrenaline spikes, and Nicca’s nearness. Everything about her fit, like she was made for him. That agile mind, open-mindedness, those lush curves. Hell, she even spouted poetry. He yearned to put a sign around her neck—no trespassing, this woman belongs to Evan Grant.
Except for that whole wolf thing…
“Why don’t we find a comfortable place to set up camp near Fairy Falls and call it a day?” he said to get his mind back to practical things, not wishing for something he couldn’t have. He told himself he selected the location as part of the mission. All species declared the pristine, wild falls a safe zone, so they wouldn’t need the wolves or eagles to stand guard. The fact that it was the number one rated site for shifter romances had nothing to do with the selection. Nothing at all.
No one would ever accuse Nicca of talking too much, but she was withdrawn even for her on the hike to the Falls. “Any suggestions on places to sleep?” he asked when her silence got too loud for him.
“I’ve, uh, never really been here,” she whispered, looking at the ground. “Just run by it on patrols sometimes.”
“And that makes you sad?” He itched to run his hand down her cheek.
“This mission makes me sad.” Her gaze stayed lowered as she walked.
His rat senses perceived a deep despondency wrapped around her like a black aura.
“This mission makes you angry, anxious, and confused. Not sad.”
“Who are you to correct my assessment of my emotional state?” She gave him a half-hearted snarl. He figured he’d hit an open, raw nerve.
“I lead this mission, and I will not have you fall apart on me. Right now, you are not okay.” He opened his arm, aping Rafe’s earlier action, inviting her to him to take comfort. “Let me help.” Let me touch you.
She visibly shook herself, ignoring his outstretched limb. “You’re right. I need space. Let me run as wolf.”
He dropped his hand, then nodded to cover the ripping sound his heart was making. “Stay close,” he said over the lump of disappointment lodged in his throat. “Give me your backpack, and I’ll find a place to sleep. Meet me at the falls when you’re done.”
Relief brightened her eyes. Once shifted, she brushed against his leg, then licked at his hand dangling by his side. He ran his fingers through her thick, gray fur touched with black and silver as she trotted off. “Grab some happy, Nicca,” he said into the air, as she raced out of sight. Come back to me. Accept me.
Alone, he hummed as he walked toward the falls. The low tune soothed his skittish rat, who hated being alone and wasn’t too fond of the woods. Rats felt secure in the pack. The human in him appreciated the red gold of the sunset streaking across the powder blue of the sky, weaving in and out of spiky, hunter green firs that ate up the landscape. Beauty truly did soothe an aching heart. The whirr of winter birds, a chorus to his ears, unnerved the rat. He picked up his pace, following the smell of ice and the roar of the falling water.
When he arrived at the falls, he saw Nicca standing at the edge of the descending water, running her fingers through the stream. That sadness he’d sensed earlier scented the air and dulled those unique gray eyes. Following a powerful intuition, he approached quietly, staying upwind so she wouldn’t notice until he stood directly behind her. She may have rejected his offer of support earlier, but he was determined to try again. His way.
She turned to face him, and tilted her head up to meet his gaze. He pushed behind one ear a lock of hair that was draped along her cheek. The tresses felt like silk, the skin velvet against his fingertips.
“Evan?”
He leaned over, touching lips to lips ever so gently. Giving comfort. Sneaking a taste. Exploring what might be. She pressed back, her mouth opening slightly beneath his. He sank into cherry and cinnamon, shyness and heat. She didn’t require a friend; she needed a lover. He desperately wanted to be that man.
He pulled back, falling hard for the blush staining her cheeks a bright pink.
“Follow me,” he said, taking her hand, and led her to the camping spot he noticed along the way.
To love a wolf.

About Shari Elder

Hello, I’m Shari. By day, I crawl out of bed, mainline coffee, walk the dog, get my kid off to school, hop on the metro, and save cities within the four walls of my office. Usually by email.

At night, the other Shari emerges. I take off the suit, curl up on the couch and let my imagination play, with words and images until stories take shape (while periodically checking on my teen-ager, hiding out in the bedroom and plotting world domination). As my alter ego, I save cities in a cape and spangled tights, wander space and time on a surfboard, fly over the Himalayas on feathered wings, make six-toed footprints in indigo talc snow on the sixth planet in the Andromeda galaxy or eavesdrop on Olympian gods while pretending to whip up a bowl of ambrosia.

In all these wondrous worlds, romance and passion blossom. I can’t resist a happy ending. And I am particularly prone to writing happy endings for those who have given up on ever getting one. That gives me immense satisfaction.

Join me on my journey. The best ideas emerge from team work.

Hang out with Shari on the Web

Website – www.sharielder.com
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/ShariElderStories/
Twitter – https://twitter.com/ShariElderBooks
Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/ShariElder
Pinterest – https://www.pinterest.com/ShariElderBooks/

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RWA Chapters — A Great Place to Meet Aspiring and Published Authors

Check out this great interview about the Yosemite Romance Writers–one of the many fantastic RWA chapters where aspiring writers and published writers get together to talk craft, marketing, and everything that matters to the writing process.

A Compelling New Release: Blood Stones–The Haunting of Sunset Canyon by Krista Lynn

What magic is this? Supernatural? Witchcraft? The Shaman’s Curse?
Or…something other? 

BloodStonesFinalWebDeep in the Arizona desert, the love a young woman feels for her mysterious Indian lover grows deeper every year, though her heart stopped beating over a century ago—stilled by the one she loves. What magic could cause this? What ancient Native American witchcraft could hold her spirit captive and make her part of The Haunting of Sunset Canyon? Could the legends of ghost warriors who guard the treasure of the Lost Blood Stones Mine be true? 

When Darcy Peel left Dry Creek, Arizona, to go to graduate school, she thought she had left for good. She never imagined she would come back to the small community nestled in the shadow of Prospector’s Mountain. But now she is compelled to return and find her sister who is lost in the red gorge canyon. On her trail to the truth, Darcy meets Alan Brandt, a young deputy who possesses hidden abilities that link him to stories of ghost warriors. Can she trust him to help find her sister as he promises? Or is she being trapped by the canyon’s magic—seduced by her attraction to a man with an uncanny connection to the deadly legends?

Blood Stones is available now from:

Her eyesight faded while outside the cave the shape of Prospector’s Mountain scraped the skyline and covered the canyon in shadow. The soft pressure of his lips lingered on her ear – this gift of pleasure her last human sensation.

“Emm-ma-line,” he whispered. “There is one thing I can do.”

The timbre of his voice, the voice she loved, soaked into her waning consciousness. His words receded with her into the dark void and replaced the beat of her heart.

“Stay with me…”

— 1911, Sunset Canyon

Reviews

“The story has a strong and intricate plot, with plenty of fast-paced action, adventure, and suspense. If you love a good chilling ghost story/romance, you can’t go wrong with Blood Stones.”

==Taylor Jones

“Blood Stones combines Native American legends with modern-day mystery and intriguing, complex characters to create a spine-tingling thriller with a little something for everyone. This one is definitely hard to put down.”

–Regan Murphy

About the Author

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Krista Lynn is a late-comer to the author’s world, with a long academic career in earth sciences in her wake, instead of years of fiction writing. But wind has filled all the sails this year, with the release of Blood Stones: The Haunting of Sunset Canyon, the first book in The Canyon Series.

It’s no mystery why Lynn writes about the high desert of Arizona. She grew up on a gold mine about sixty miles north of Phoenix. The closest neighbor was six miles or so down the Agua Fria River, or another twenty miles by dirt road. To say it was a gold mine is technically correct, but very little gold was ever mined. It did, however, keep gas in the jeep and food on the table. The real treasure of this placer gold-mining venture was the lasting impressions of living wild in the desert with her brothers and a menagerie of dogs, goats, and donkeys. And experiencing the magic and spirit of a rugged, isolated landscape, where mysteries were carried on the wind and whispered in your sleep. Years later, these experiences are the multi-colored threads woven into her series of romantic supernatural suspense set in the high desert of Arizona.

She now lives in California with her husband and a menagerie of dogs, goats, and one spoiled horse.

Learn More at:

Guest Post: My Werewolf’s Character Was Inspired By an Angel

by Clare Dargin

Angel Wings Pink

Before I sat down to write Wolf’s Blade, I had only one thing in mind, I wanted to write a werewolf romance novel.  My first in fact.  But who the character was, the events that made up the main hero’s and heroine’s life or the story’s main conflict I had yet to figure out.

So I did what I always do in these situations, I stressed myself by worrying.  Yes sometimes I can be very neurotic. After pacing a deep groove into my carpet from pacing, I came to the realization that worrying was getting me nowhere. So I reluctantly set the project aside and began working on other things.

Then one day while I was watching my favorite paranormal show, I saw him.  There he was in all of his six foot something glory, the inspiration for my werewolf shifter character- who I’d later name Callum Blake.

The show in question was Supernatural.  I’ve been a fan for years and love the exploits character who are brothers– Sam and Dean Winchester.  This particular season, season nine had a new character that added a sweet pathos to the story line, which in my opinion, had never been on the show before.

The character, known as Gadreel, was an angel who was charged with guarding the Garden of Eden.  But for some reason, either through carelessness or falling for the devil’s trickery, he allowed Lucifer to enter the Garden which caused the fall of creation.  As a result, he was placed in heaven’s jail and was released when a fellow angel, Castiel released him because Castiel became an unwitting pawn of another angel named Metatron dubious plans.

Anyways, Gadreel’s storyline though brief, was powerful.  Not only because of the writing (which is always good on the show in my opinion) but through the acting of Tahmoh Penikett.  I must admit, I had never seen him before – though later on I found out he was a major character on the revamped Battlestar Galactica among other shows- he made me cry as well as cheer for his tortured and damaged character.

Tahmoh as Gadreel Animated Gif

But being the good romance writer that I am, I had to admire his incredible good looks.  Six-foot-four, with a lean muscular build, broad shoulders and a narrow waist line, Gadreel/Tahmoh was walking sex.  I mean the guy was hot!

That’s when I knew I found Callum Blake or at least the placeholder/image I could use in my mind as I wrote the book.  When I write, I usually I like to have a person in mind when I create the character and the world he lives in because it inspires me when I’m trying to think of facial expressions or when I’m just to trying to find out what the man or woman is thinking.

Though Callum is a lot younger than Tahmoh the actor and much younger than Gadreel the angel, I made sure or at least try to make sure that Callum possessed the magnetic charm and sexy charisma that Tahmoh portrayed as Gadreel. I hope you enjoy reading Callum’s story as much as I did writing it.

                               ~ Clare

blog tour button

I’m also doing a giveaway.  The Smexy Romance Blog Tour and Giveaway.  Every person has two chances to win!  An Individual prize and a Grand Prize.  One lucky winner will receive an erotic romance of mine from my library and can also win the Grand Prize- A free erotic romance from every author featured on this blog tour! Keep reading for your chance to win!

Now from my latest release Wolf’s Blade

wolfsbladeSamantha Dixon rescues a wounded wolf shifter in the woods near her home … and unwittingly gets drawn into a dangerous game of cat and mouse with a murderer. Callum Blake is on the trail of an evil man who would be king of all wolf kind, no matter the cost … it’s up to Callum to stop him. How can Callum fulfill his duty to protect his pack and save the woman who is destined to be his mate?

Excerpt

“Samantha Dixon. What’s yours?”

“Callum Blake.”

He concentrated on Samantha. He’d never seen a woman as gorgeous as she. Her howl stated she was in search of mate, but surely a woman as beautiful as she would have suitors falling over themselves to have her. No male wolf in his right mind would pass up someone like her.

“Have you been mated before?” he asked in a subtle attempt to find out about her past or present relationship. All he wanted to really know was if he had competition.

“I was but he died,” she said softly. “A casualty of the war between us and a neighboring pack.”

She bit her lip and wiped the corners of her eyes.

“I’m sorry for your loss.” His heart went out for her. Losing someone you love was rough and for it to be a mate made it even harder. Shifters when they mated were bound together by a special bond, and when it broke because of the other’s death it was like losing half of their soul. He never had that type of connection before, still, he could imagine the type of pain such a loss would inflict on the surviving mate.

She stood and began to straighten up the bed. “Not half as sorry as I am.”

“I don’t understand,” he said.

“If you don’t mind, I’d rather not talk about it.”

“Please forgive my intrusion. I’m just trying to express my gratitude.”

She smiled weakly. “I know. I’m sorry if I sounded snippy. It’s just that things have been rough lately and I’ve been stressed.” She waved her hand as she turned to leave. “That’s not important right now. You need to get well.”

“Please don’t go.” Just having her near soothed him. She was cute, feminine, and wore a timid expression that hinted at the suffering she had endured. Even though he had only known her for a short time, he already wanted to be her shield, protecting her from any harm that would come her way. He wanted to hold her in his arms and feel her body against his. Something in her challenged him to be more than just a warrior. Ever since her howl in the night, his soul had been on fire for her.

Buy Links- 

AmazonLiquid Silver Books

About Clare Dargin

Clare Dargin is a multi-published romance author. She has written for several publishers in different genres, including erotic romance, military romance, contemporary, paranormal, and sci-fi. She lives in the mid-west, and when not surfing the web, she is hard at work writing her next romance novel. You can find her on Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, and Amazon.

Web Links- 

Enter the Smexy Romance Blog Tour and Giveaway For a Chance to win Two Prizes!

 

You can enter as often as you like so come back often.  To find more great erotic romances and authors associated with this tour and get a chance to sign up again– click on this link- http://claresblog2thehaven.blogspot.com

Thanks and Happy Reading!

~Clare Dargin

A Paranormal Treasure for the Holidays: Frosty Relations by Tara Quan

With the holidays upon us there are troves of books to curl up with by the fireplace. Tara Quan’s paranormal romantic comedy goes great with mulled wine and cinnamon cookies. Part of Decadent Publishing’s 1Night Stand line, Frosty Relations features a young college graduate facing the complicated world of adulthood and confronting the frost mage she’s had a crush on for most of her life. Add some Christmas magic and Madame Eve’s renowned matchmaking service, and we’ve got the beginnings of an icy-hot love story.

In keeping with the holiday spirit, the publisher has discounted the book to $0.99 for a limited time on Amazon and ARe (the sale ends December 14, 1015). Tara is also giving away a $10 gift card. To enter, leave a comment here and drop your details in the Rafflecopter widget at this landing page on Tara’s website: http://www.taraquan.com/frostyrelations

Frosty Relations

Frosty Relations_99centsAttorney Jack Frost never understood why holidays did weird things to people. His secretary went on vacation, his best friend ditched their annual Aspen trip, and the law firm’s stubborn human resources assistant refuses his clerical support request. What’s a warlock to do on Christmas Eve but go on a 1-Night Stand? But when an oddly familiar empath shows up as his date, this ice mage has a hard time denying the magic of the winter solstice.

Faced with an anemic employment market and financial woes, college graduate and former witch Mina Mao lands an HR assistant job at Frost and Sons. Having spent her day saving Christmas from Frost Junior’s Grinch-like behavior, she accepts the gift of Madame Eve’s service and heads over to the Castillo Capital. When her date turns out to be her childhood crush and workplace nemesis, she braces herself for the sexiest icy ride of her life.  

Genre: Paranormal Romantic Comedy, Interracial/Multicultural

Limited Time Sale – Get it for $0.99 at Amazon or AllRomance

About Tara Quan

Globetrotter, lover of languages, and romance author, Tara Quan has an addiction for crafting tales with a pinch of spice and a smidgen of kink. Inspired by her travels, Tara enjoys tossing her kick-ass heroines and alpha males into exotic contemporary locales, paranormal worlds, and post-apocalyptic futures. Her characters, armed with magical powers or conventional weapons, are guaranteed a suspenseful and sensual ride, as well as their own happily ever after. Learn more at www.taraquan.com

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Google+ | Goodreads | Pinterest | Amazon

EXCERPT

Curious, she pulled up the accounting module and groaned when she read the current tally. “Please tell me mini-Frost already left.”


“No such luck.” Angela looked over her shoulder. “The invoices I turned in put Leo’s billings above his by a hair, so the Space Cadet is on a warpath. He’s marching down the hallway as we speak. By the way, what possessed you to let Beth take his overflow work this week?”

Mina furrowed her brows. “Why? She’s new, but I’ve heard she’s good.”

Angela rolled her eyes. “That girl spends half her day on the phone and makes careless mistakes. If she wasn’t tall, blonde, and busty, she’d never have gotten through probation. With the testosterone crowd, all she needs to do is bend at the waist and elbow-squeeze her boobs whenever she drops off a document.”

Sighing, Mina filed the information away and clung to a ray of hope. “Jack is young, male, and single. Maybe it’ll work on him, too?”

Angela snorted. “He grew up with us as babysitters, and we call him the Space Cadet for a reason. Do you know what that brat cares about more than womanizing?”

Mina shook her head.

“Proper usage of spaces, periods, apostrophes, and commas.”

Frosty Relations is Available at:

Amazon
AllRomance

Heart to Heart Contest for Unpublished Writers

The San Francisco Area Romance Writers of America chapter has announced that it is open to entries for its 2015 Heart To Heart Contest for unpublished writers. Entries are to be made electronically only. The top three finalists in each category will have their entries read by a literary agent, a traditional publishing house editor and an e-publishing editor. SFA-RWA will announce the winners, and certificates will be awarded to the top winner in each category.

Categories

  • CONTEMPORARY — Novels set in the present
  • EROTIC — Novels in which sensuality constitutes a strong element in the romance
  • HISTORICAL — Novels featuring romance in time periods other than the present. Most editors consider as historical books set prior to WWI
  • PARANORMAL – Novels that mix the elements of paranormal, time travel, futuristic or fantasy
  • YOUNG ADULT — Novels with a strong romantic theme geared toward the young adult reader — may contain paranormal, time travel, futuristic, or fantasy elements

Eligibility

“Open to all writers unpublished by an RWA-approved publisher as of the entry deadline. Prospective entrants may be published with a non RWA-recognized publisher. However, they may not enter books/manuscripts that have been professionally edited or have ISBN numbers.”

Timeline

  • August 31, 2015 — Deadline for submissions (electronic only)
  • October 5, 2015 — First-Round Finalists Notification
  • November 6, 2015 — Final Round Winners Announced

Guidelines

“Enter the scene(s) in which the hero and heroine meet for the first time or for the first time in the book, if previously acquainted, up to a maximum of 15 pages. Each entry may only be entered in one category. However, you may submit as many different entries as you wish. Each new entry must have a contest entry form and payment.”

More Information

Go to the Heart to Heart Contest Web Page for important additional information.