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FREE! by Rhonda Lee Carver

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Avary Pine plays the cello like an angel.

One evening she is attacked outside of the theater after a performance and is left without the use of her hand.

Fast forward two years. After grueling physical therapy and living and breathing the cello, Avary is determined to become the musician she once was. Her music coach encourages her to start playing in the public again, but the mind doesn’t heal as fast as the body. Each time Avary closes her eyes she is filled with memories of the attack.

Living with her sister, out of money and in a career rut, Avary accepts an offer to play at a dinner party at the illustrious Knight Estate. Baby steps back into the musical world didn’t include a luxurious weekend at a vineyard, but does she have a choice?

Reserved, intimidating, rich Victor Knight reluctantly invites unworldly, mousy Avary to his estate–but he’s in for a shock. Nothing about her is mousy. The last thing he needs is to get involved with a sweet, free-spirited cellist, but why can’t he resist? She cramps his bachelor lifestyle, and he’s never been happier. But he can’t lose someone again…

Can they leave the baggage at the door and learn to trust? Or will their past poison their future?

PrideandPleasure

EXCERPT:

“That was close,” he whispered near her ear, his breath sweeping across her cheek.

He didn’t release her and she didn’t move. Instead, he lifted his hand to her jaw and slowly brushed his knuckles across her skin, tracing the line to where her pulse beat rapidly in the hollow at her neck. His fingers moved along her shoulder, examining the trembling flesh, gliding the tip of one finger over the tiny strap that held the top of the gown in place.  He tucked his thumb underneath and gradually tugged it. The gown slipped low onto one breast. Her nipples turned to solid pearls. He skated his thumbs down her arms and she shivered, a whimper escaping her quivering lips. His breath grew hotter against her nape, his chest lifting and falling raggedly. He nuzzled her neck, his sandpapery beard rasped her sensitive flesh, but quickly forgotten when he brushed his lips against her ear lobe, lower to the spot where her neckline met her shoulder. She was at a loss, uncertain what she should do. She couldn’t move for fear that she would land on her face. And her body liked his touch, enjoyed how he erupted a cluster of sensations through her, over her, around her.

She felt his gentle touch on her wrist—the hand with the scar. She moaned in refusal, but he continued to slide his fingers along the length of hers, his thumb tracing the puffy red line. Sparks traveled up her arm and all she could do was stand there, allowing him to coax forbidden sensations within her.  He brought her hand to his mouth and he kissed the spot where the scar was reddest, where the knife had first entered her flesh, the deepest cut. Then he traced the line with the tip of his tongue, upward from her palm, over her sensitive wrist and stopping where the scar ended, then kissing her again. Her veins quaked and her heart skipped ten beats. She’d never known such tenderness, such emotion.

A low groan slipped from within his chest and he easily turned her around to face him. She met his burning gaze and her lungs deflated. Seconds ticked by, maybe hours…maybe forever. She was in a hypnotic state as she watched him, his lovely eyes, his beautiful mouth that promised passionate kisses and of the secret things he could do to her—for her. For the first time in her entire life, she wanted a man to rip her clothes from her body and take her—hard and fast. She wanted to know what he felt like, have him explore her virgin flesh.

Would he oblige her?

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Savings for My Friends

Hello everyone,

 

I’m so excited to tell you about my new website.

You can now read longer excerpts for all my books,  buy my books directly from me and save.

To celebrate all my self-published books are on sale

when you purchase them on my site. The  20% off is applied at checkout with no limit on how much you spend.

Take a look and download some of my free reads.

HotPraireNightscover (200x300)

Anita

 

 

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Cowboy Giveaway! Rhonda Lee Carver

Hey, y’all! Spring has sprung. What are some of your favorite things about this season? I love seeing the new flowers pop up, the leaves fill the trees, which seems to happen overnight. New life being born on the ranches and farms. The first of the season vegetables in the garden. Ripe strawberries. And shirtless men.

Did you know that I have a cowboy up for pre-order? I do! Cowboys Forgive will be released June 7th!.

 

 

Pre-order here!

Blurb:

Taking a dirt bath off a bull lands Jace Jackson into the hands of beautiful, smart, sexy country singer Jessa Garvey. In pain and loopy on pain meds, he has no clue he’s flirting with her, and making a big damn fool of himself. Back in high school she rejected him, and although years have passed, sometimes a cowboy can’t forget. When Miss Priss invades his space at Nirvana, he decides to give her a dose of her own medicine and puts her to work mucking stalls. That’ll teach her…
Or will it?
Trading her guitar for a shovel, Jessa is out to prove to Jace that she isn’t the same person she was as a teenager. As far as she’s concerned, he’ll forgive her even if it kills her, or lands her hot and willing in bed with the dangerously handsome cowboy.
She’s in deep.
Forgiveness is granted, but she isn’t prepared for the choices she must make. Has she changed enough? Does the sliver of selfishness remain?

 

Excerpt:

“I’m getting my pants back on. I’m feeling a draft.” He searched the room and found his clothes neatly stacked on the table. As he stepped over to grab them his gown opened in the back, showing off a pair of blue striped boxers. She stifled a giggle. Good thing he wasn’t naked, but good for whom? She wouldn’t have minded. Tight asses were hard to find.

“Damn!” He gave his head a quick shake. She noticed that he was having some difficulty managing sliding one foot into the leg of his jeans because he was favoring his sore ribs.

“Here, I’ll help.”

She heard his gasp as she knelt before him, helping him slide one leg in, and once that was done, she smiled. “That’s wasn’t too hard.” She looked up and gulped. She was eye-level with his crotch—his bulging crotch.

His eyes fell to her mouth and he didn’t need to say a word for her to realize where his thoughts headed. She couldn’t help herself as her own thoughts stumbled down the same direction. Looking further up his body, he was wide-eyed and a tuft of his hair hung down his forehead.

Clearing her throat, she wasn’t sure where to go from here.

He closed his eyes. Could he be trying to control his thoughts? Things only got worse—or harder. The tip of his erection poked out of the hole in his underwear. He opened his eyes and groaned in humiliation.

With jeans scrunched at his ankles, he took a step back, lost his balance and fell back onto the floor, hitting his head on the metal table sending it crashing against the wall.

“Damn! Son-of-a-gun. Mother fucker!” After the strings of curses finished, he lifted a hand to touch the back of his head, wincing in pain.

“Jace? Are you okay?” She squatted beside him, helping him sit up. “Does it hurt?”

“No, it feels great.” He touched his ribs lightly.

She bit her lip, not sure what to do to help him at this point. “I’m sorry.”

“I shouldn’t have gotten out of bed this morning.” He moaned. “Go ahead, hit me right here and knock me out.” He patted his cheek.

“I wouldn’t do that.” She frowned.

“Damn pain pills better work!” he groaned.

“Hold on. Let me see what I can do.” She found an ice bag that he must have been using on his ribs. She brought it over and he watched her, his eyes glazed. Yeah, she’d guess the meds were starting to kick in. Patting her lap, he looked at her funny. “I’ll ice the back of your head.”

He wrapped his steely arms around her. Their faces were so close she could see a freckle on his cheek. “I’m a little blurry-eyed and wobbly, but you’re beautiful.”

“Yes, you are a bit blurry-eyed.” She stifled a giggle.

Before she knew what was happening, he bobbed back and forth then moaned. Just as she’d suspected, she was no resistance against his weight. Together they fell to the floor with him sprawling on top of her, pinning her underneath his unconscious body. “Jace?”

Nothing.

“Hello? Yoo-hoo!” She tapped him on the shoulder. This time she received a deep snore in response.

Oh no. I’m trapped.

She tried pushing him to the side, but her arms were stuck under him. His snoring grew louder, tickling her ear drum. Her limbs were quickly falling asleep. And if this position wasn’t enough to throw her for a loop, his hand came up and grasped her breast. What should have been pure humiliation skittering through her body instead was a reminder that she was a woman who craved a man’s touch. A woman who found this cowboy sexy and amazingly virile.

He jerked and she looked down at his profile. He was staring at her. “Jessa? That’s you,” he mumbled. “You, snob, you. I didn’t like your prom dress.”

She froze. So, he did recognize me. Although he was talking out of his head.

“You’re cozy,” he said against her chest.

Jessa realized she should be doing her best to get the brawny man off her body, but instead, she found it quite entertaining. And she had a feeling this wouldn’t be the last time she saw Jace Jackson, not if she could help it.

GIVEAWAY!

I’d like to offer one Cowboys of Nirvana ebook to one winner! What is your favorite thing about spring? Post your answer to that question in the comment section and you’ll be entered to win one of the hot cowboys. I’ll choose one random winner on 4/30/17 at my Author page. Best of luck!Author page!

Check these delicious cowboys out here…Cowboys of Nirvana

 

Let’s connect!

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Categories: 69 Shade Of Smut, coming soon, Cowboys, Cowboys of Nirvana, Uncategorized | Tags: , , | 17 Comments

Sneak Peek! Rhonda Lee Carver

Cowboys Forgive (#8, Cowboys of Nirvana)

Okay, I’ve announced that this book will be the final addition to Cowboys of Nirvana. I’ve received lots of messages from readers asking me to continue the series, telling me they’re sad over this announcement, and they want another Cowboy…

So far though, I’m feeling that Jace’s story will be the finale. It just feels like it’s time to sail the ship in a new direction. However, the positive side, for those readers who wait until a series is finished to grab all the treasures at once, well, your time is coming to get all the sexiness in one swoop. 

Stop over to my blog and enter to win free stuff! 

Click here for a rowdy experience

In the meantime, how about I tease you a bit?

cowboysforgivefinal

Cowboys Forgive is available for pre-order, releasing in June. So, go ahead, click and have him stroll right into your kindle.

Pre-order here!

Blurb:

Taking a dirt bath off a bull lands Jace Jackson into the hands of beautiful, smart, sexy country singer Jessa Garvey. In pain and loopy on pain meds, he has no clue he’s flirting with her, and making a big damn fool of himself. Back in high school she rejected him, and although years have passed, sometimes a cowboy can’t forget. When Miss Priss invades his space at Nirvana, he decides to give her a dose of her own medicine and puts her to work mucking stalls. That’ll teach her…
Or will it?
Trading her guitar for a shovel, Jessa is out to prove to Jace that she isn’t the same person she was as a teenager. As far as she’s concerned, he’ll forgive her even if it kills her, or lands her hot and willing in bed with the dangerously handsome cowboy.
She’s in deep.
Forgiveness is granted, but she isn’t prepared for the choices she must make. Has she changed enough? Does the sliver of selfishness remain?

 

Unedited Excerpt:

“Look,” he sat up and swung his legs over the side of the cot, making her roll back to give him space. “We both know I haven’t suffered a concussion. I could read you the ABCs backward and walk a straight line if necessary. After a good nap, I’ll be as good as new.”

Standing, she sighed. “Okay.” She nibbled her bottom lip.

“Yes?”

“Under the circumstances, I think you’re pretty hot. I mean…cleared to leave.” Was she forgetting that she had no medical training?

He smiled and his eyes lit. “’Bout time.”

“Just follow instructions.” She winked.

He stared a good five seconds. “Do I know you?”

She twirled a piece of her hair and her chuckle sounded more like a cat barfing. “I have that kind of face.”

Standing on his feet, he wobbled. “I think I know you.”

“Jace, I don’t think you should be standing.” He leaned sideways and she quickly moved forward, pressing her palms against his brick-hard chest. If he went down she knew she’d be no resistance.

Damn. He smelled good—a combination between leather and spice.

“I’m getting my pants back on. I’m feeling a draft.” He searched the room and found his clothes neatly stacked on the table. As he stepped over to grab them his gown opened in the back, showing off a pair of blue striped boxers. She stifled a giggle. Good thing he wasn’t naked, but good for who exactly? She wouldn’t have minded. Tight asses were hard to find.

“Damn!” He gave his head a quick shake. She noticed that he was having some difficulty with managing sliding one foot into the leg of his jeans. Busted ribs didn’t make it any easier.

“Here, I’ll help.”

She heard his gasp as she knelt down before him. She went to work helping him slide one leg in, once that was done, she smiled. “That’s wasn’t too hard.” She looked up and she was eye-level with his crotch—his bulging crotch.

His eyes fell to her mouth and he didn’t need to say a word for her to realize where his thoughts headed. She couldn’t help herself as her own thoughts stumbled down the same direction. 

Clearing her throat, she wasn’t sure where to go from here.

As if he couldn’t help himself, he closed his eyes. Could he be trying to control his thoughts? Things only got worse—or harder. The tip of his erection poked out of the hole in his underwear. He opened his eyes and groaned in humiliation.

Jeans scrunched at his ankles, he made the mistake of taking a step back, He lost his balance and fell back onto the floor, hitting his head on the metal table.

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Sale on a KNIGHT–Rhonda Lee Carver

HI, y’all! Rhonda Lee Carver here!

the-darkest-knight

 

Order here!

99 pennies! Limited Time ONLY!

 

Reese Shane’s life was changed forever when she suffered a traumatic head injury while on duty in Iraq. Three years later, she’s left with epileptic seizures along with a service dog that alerts her to oncoming seizures.

Army Ranger Seth Knight, also known as Dark Knight, isn’t a stranger to danger or trauma. A bomb explosion during a covert mission left him scarred physically and, more importantly, emotionally. With no interest in his family’s fortunes and glamorous social revelries, he has secluded himself on the large property his father left him in the Tennessee hills. He likes being alone, but when a fiery spirit shows up on his doorstep, his peace and quiet gets a makeover.

Reese’s work helping injured veterans is jeopardized when Angelina Knight passes away. She had promised to financially back Reese’s project. Now Reese must turn to plan B: Seth Knight. She’s heard the rumors of the recluse in the mountains and isn’t sure how she’ll convince the angry soldier why he should open his secret haven to veterans when he wants nothing to do with her, or her dreams.

Little does she know, but will find out, that the “Dark Knight” has many layers, and badass isn’t the only one.

Seth thinks he’s agreeing to help Reese, but soon he’ll find out that she is the one saving him…

EXCERPT:

Seth knocked on Reese’s cabin door. She didn’t answer, so he knocked harder.

A minute later, the door swung open and there was the object of his chaotic thoughts. Because it was dark he couldn’t see her expression, but her slight moan told him she’d been sleeping and she wasn’t happy to be awakened at midnight.

“Seth, do you realize what time it is?”

“Time for me to give you a piece of my mind. That’s what time it is.”

She leaned in closer to him and sniffed. “Did you drink the beer or bathe in it?”

He laughed. He did find her humorous. “A man deserves a cold one after a long day’s work.”

“Yes, a cold one. Not the entire keg.”

“Are you going to lecture me?” he groaned.

“You came here, remember? Apparently with something to say to me?”

She moved and he got a whiff of her sweet scent that drove through him like a hammer. He gave himself a mental shake. He came here for a reason and it had nothing to do with breathing her in. Or to bury his face into her soft curves. He’d witnessed just how soft they were that afternoon and his palms were having withdraw.

“I did. I came to talk.”

“Why don’t we have this conversation when you’re, let’s say, capable of standing without a doorjamb for support?”

He snorted loudly. “I can stand on my own two feet.” He pushed away from the frame in an attempt to prove a point, but he wobbled. “This damn porch. It ain’t even.”

“Then by all means, let’s take this inside before the porch is the death of you.” She stepped back to let him pass.

Warning bells shot off in his head. Don’t go inside. Stay outside where it’s cold and not contaminated with beautiful Reese. But he didn’t listen. Never did.

He stepped across the threshold just as she turned on the bedside lamp in the open room. He could have kicked himself when he strolled his hungry gaze down the itty-bitty pink cami and the sleeping shorts. Apparently, he didn’t drown himself in enough beer because his dick pressed against the zipper until he swore he heard seams break.

“Don’t you have anything else to wear besides those show-all shorts?” he snapped.

She squinted. “What are you talking about? I was asleep in bed before you came rolling in here like a brewery in boots.”

“Don’t act like you don’t know what I’m talking about. Do I need to remind you how enticing…I mean, how short those shorts were today? That little fringed edge. The hole in the pocket that could make a man think it’s a peep hole. Oh yeah, you know what I mean. I could read your mind they were so short.”

She crossed her arms over her chest and tilted her chin. “You came here at this hour to talk to me about this? My shorts?”

“How’s a man supposed to think?” He sniffed.

“Oh, I don’t know, possibly the first suggestion I have would have is for you to stop looking at my clothes if you’re offended, but since you think I have some deviant intention, wearing hat you call ‘peep holes’, I’ll put you out of your misery. Knowing I’d be painting, I didn’t want to wear any of my nice clothes since my entire wardrobe fits into a duffel bag, so I bought a pair of old shorts at the consignment store. Unfortunately, they were too long and the scissors too dull, and maybe my vision was lopsided because I couldn’t cut a straight line if it killed me. Before I knew it, I had Daisy-Dukes. Happy?” She rolled her eyes. “I guess next you’ll accuse me of taking a shower to smell good for you.”

He shrugged, dropping down into the chair. Her frown couldn’t be unseen. “You’re irritated.”

“Wow. Handsome and smart. You can go now.” She tapped her bare toes.

“Come on. Can’t a man sit and take a load off?”

“Do you have something else to speak to me about besides my wardrobe?”

“Yes. I don’t know how to put this lightly…because I know you probably don’t see it…but a pretty woman can sometimes take a man away from what he’s supposed to be doing.”

Tapping her foot harder, she sighed. “Is this ‘man’ you?”

He cleared his throat. “No, the crew here working. For instance, Lex. If you haven’t noticed…”

“Go on…” her frown deepened as she dropped her hands to her hips which drew his gaze to her slender waist, another part of her that he needed to steer clear of.

“I’m just saying, while we were sitting around at Mountain Mug, they mentioned your name.” He plucked at a loose thread on the arm of the chair.

“Your friends mentioned me? Why?”

“They think you’re pretty.”

She blinked. “Well, you can tell them thank you from me. Good night.” She took a step toward the door.

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Dirty stuff…oh my-Rhonda Lee Carver

Hi, y’all! Rhonda Lee Carver here.

Over the weekend I ran into an old friend and her husband and we sat down for coffee. She and I were discussing my books and her husband chimes in with “You’re the one who writes the dirty stuff…” Okay, usually I chuckle and wave off the remark, but this time I felt the need to educate. I asked, “What do you mean by “dirty stuff’?”

Him: “Sex and dirty talk. That’s what you write.”

Me: “I write romance with sex, yes, but the story of two people falling in love is the star.”

Him: “Oh, you write porn.”

At this point, I’m gritting my teeth.  I say, “No, I don’t write porn. Do you watch porn? You must to be a critic on what’s porn and what’s not.”

He didn’t say another word. What gets me, some people think there’s only one heat level in books. Sweet or dirty. Soooo wrong! Shall I say it again? SOOOO wrong! When I’m asked what heat level I write, I say, “If you watch a rated R movie (and who doesn’t), then you’ll like the heat level of my books.” But when I have to explain further, I use movies as the scale. Just as there are different ratings in movies, there are in books too. Sometimes I’ll get, “I’m embarrassed for people to know that I read sexy romance.” Then I ask, “What was the last movie you watched in a theater?” Almost every single time they’ll name a movie that is rated R. “So, you’re not embarrassed to watch a movie that has sex scenes, shows a woman’s boobs, or has graphic language in front of a room of strangers, but you’re not okay with reading a book? Do you read the book aloud to a room of strangers?”

Point is, I’m not ashamed of what I write and as a reader you shouldn’t be ashamed of what you read.

99 Penny Preorder!

the-darkest-knight

 

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Reese Shane’s life was changed forever when she suffered a traumatic head injury while on duty in Iraq. Three years later, she’s left with epileptic seizures along with a service dog that alerts her to oncoming seizures.

Army Ranger Seth Knight, also known as Dark Knight, isn’t a stranger to danger or trauma. A bomb explosion during a covert mission left him scarred physically and, more importantly, emotionally. With no interest in his family’s fortunes and glamorous social revelries, he has secluded himself on the large property his father left him in the Tennessee hills. He likes being alone, but when a fiery spirit shows up on his doorstep, his peace and quiet gets a makeover.

Reese’s work helping injured veterans is jeopardized when Angelina Knight passes away. She had promised to financially back Reese’s project. Now Reese must turn to plan B: Seth Knight. She’s heard the rumors of the recluse in the mountains and isn’t sure how she’ll convince the angry soldier why he should open his secret haven to veterans when he wants nothing to do with her, or her dreams.

Little does she know, but will find out, that the “Dark Knight” has many layers, and badass isn’t the only one.

Seth thinks he’s agreeing to help Reese, but soon he’ll find out that she is the one saving him…

Buy Now!

 

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New Cover/Preorder sale–Rhonda Lee Carver

Hi, y’all. Here in Ohio we’ve had the craziest weather. Friday, the temperature got up to 80 and by Saturday we were freezing our tootsies off at a low of 40…and it was snowing.

I have a new book up for preorder and it’s ONLY 99 pennies. Grab it now because it will go up after release. It’s up at Amazon, but will be up on all venues soon!

the-darkest-knight

Blurb:

Reese Shane’s life was changed forever when she suffered a traumatic head injury while on duty in Iraq.  Three years later, she’s left with epileptic seizures along with a service dog that alerts her to oncoming seizures.

Army Ranger Seth Knight, also known as Dark Knight, isn’t a stranger to danger or trauma.  A bomb explosion during a covert mission left him scarred physically and, more importantly, emotionally.  With no interest in his family’s fortunes and glamorous social revelries, he has secluded himself on the large property his father left him in the Tennessee hills.  He likes being alone, but when a fiery spirit shows up on his doorstep, his peace and quiet gets a makeover.

Reese’s work helping injured veterans is jeopardized when Angelina Knight passes away.  She had promised to financially back Reese’s project.  Now Reese must turn to plan B:  Seth Knight.  She’s heard the rumors of the recluse in the mountains and isn’t sure how she’ll convince the angry soldier why he should open his secret haven to veterans when he wants nothing to do with her, or her dreams.

Little does she know, but will find out, that the “Dark Knight” has many layers, and badass isn’t the only one.

Seth thinks he’s agreeing to help Reese, but soon he’ll find out that she is the one saving him…

preorder here for 99 cents!

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99 cents sale – limited time

For the next few days, Entangled Publishing is featuring my contemporary, steamy romance, Just One Week, for 99 cents.

Keeping his hands off is a test he’s bound to fail…

Her brother’s best friend is not only the hottest man Michelle Dennis has ever seen, he’s the reason she left town eight years ago. Of course he’s the one waiting at the airport. Worse, he made sure they’re staying in the same house.

Alex Stafford is expecting to pick up his friend’s kid sister, not a full-fledged bombshell. He was planning to apologize for their past, but the feelings he had years ago come roaring back…and this time, there’s no denying them.

Keeping his hands off is a test he’s bound to fail—especially when they’re stuck in close quarters. But falling in love with Michelle, living in her world, isn’t an option for a guy like him. And remembering that will save them both a lot of heartache…

justoneweek_redo_500
https://entangledpublishing.com/index.php/just-one-week.html

“Alice Gaines will tantalize your romance tastebuds with a book you can’t put down until the very last page.” – Jasmine Haynes, New York Times bestselling author of Somebody’s Love

 

 

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New Cowboy–Rhonda Lee Carver

Pre-order here!

Losing his leg was hard enough. He wasn’t about to lose his heart too.

Bookworm, Harley Tate, thought showing up uninvited was a good way to catch Penn Jericho by surprise, but what she didn’t expect was that her idea would backfire. She landed in the arms of the sexiest cowboy she’d ever seen, and the little fact that he was naked and kissing her in a way she’d never been kissed before couldn’t be ignored.

From the second he realized he was groping the wrong woman, Penn should have backed off, but there was something about the woman with the too-big glasses and chocolate eyes that struck him hard in the chest. He hadn’t been thrown for a wild loop since the accident and waking up to find that he’d lost a leg. So when she blames him for all her problems, instead of sending her on her way, he brings her home.

Staying with Penn is the safest place for Harley, but she can’t stop fantasizing that he’ll kiss her again. Touch her like he did when they first met. Penn is sidetracked by the beautiful, brave woman who is surrounded by suspense. To save her, he needs to keep his head on straight, but that’s a difficult task when she makes him forget that he has no desire to make room in his life for a relationship.

Excerpt:

The knock brought Penn Jericho up from the couch where he’d been sitting in his dark living room, pondering his day and resting his aching muscles. His prosthetic foot clanked loudly against the wooden planks and anticipation grew wildly in him as he got closer to relief. It had been weeks since he’d found solace in the warmth of soft curves. He was long overdue.

Swinging open the door, he didn’t bother turning on the light as he reached out, grabbed a slender hand and dragged his earlier-than-expected-booty-call across the threshold. His body turned rock-solid, and he realized just how much he needed this. And because he wasn’t wearing any clothes, his cock saluted the sexy bombshell he pushed against the wall. She rewarded him with a whimper of surprise. A framed picture dropped to the floor at their feet, cracking the glass, but he didn’t care. Not. One. Shit.

He nuzzled her hair, glad that she wore it down unlike her usual practical ponytail, and inhaled her scent, then he paused. This wasn’t her usual cheeseburger/alcohol combination from waiting tables at the local honky tonk. No, this reminded him of a fresh batch of cookies. He could eat a dozen, but for now he’d settle for eating one, delicious, wet cookie. He threaded his fingers in her silken hair and lowered his mouth, drawing his tongue along the seam of her lush lips. He tasted cherry.  “I thought I’d go crazy waiting on you, Saucy,” he whispered close to her ear.

She stiffened. Now why would she do that? He pulled back, just enough to look down at her. The room was so dark he couldn’t see her expression, but he got the feeling she wasn’t her usual ready-and-willing self. He blew out a long breath. Maybe he’d come on too strong right off the bat, but she never complained before. “Are you playing hard to get?” No answer. “What’s wrong?”

“If I was ‘Saucy’ I’d probably be into this.” The soft voice tinged with an accent that wasn’t Texan made every hair on his body stand.

 

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Some of my favorite covers by Alice Gaines

I have to admit to a weakness for bodice rippers–you know, the old historical romance covers where one member of the couple is ripping the other’s clothing off.  The idea being that they’re too excited to wait to undo buttons and hooks but have to get to each other’s bodies NOW!  After I learned that it’s almost impossible to rip the front of a dress but that the back would have a seam that might give way, I decided to have my  hero do that with my heroine in my first ever published historical romance.  Voila!  Waitangi Nights.

waitanginights  Dorchester Publishing did a wonderful job with that cover by filling it full of orchids.  The heroine was an orchid nurserywoman working for a rich and handsome man who lived in New Zealand.  By the middle they’d become lovers.  By the end, they’d become husband and wife.

In the olden days, publishers would hire two models and a photographer to do a photo shoot.  Then, they’d send the pictures to an artist who’d create an acrylic painting.  Publishers used to brag they paid more for the cover than they paid the author for the book.  I don’t know why they thought we’d appreciate that.

These days, photographers do the shoots with models and put the images up for authors and publishers to buy the right to use on covers.  Most people don’t pay to buy the image outright so the hero and heroine can appear on multiple covers.  That honestly doesn’t bother me that  much because we all hire wonderful graphic artists to make our covers unique and beautiful.

Here’s one I truly love.  CC_Alice Gaines_Cover (1)This was for Captain and Countess, my Kindle Scout winner.  I adore the intense color and how the man’s hand caresses the woman’s shoulder blade.  I also like the way she has one hand over her breast and the other tickling the back of his neck and his ear.  It suggests a bit of modesty but also a desire to touch him.  This is a Jenn LeBlanc image done up by my graphic artist, Talina Perkins of Bookin’ It Designs.

 

 

And here’s another one by Jenn and Talina.

TSL_AG_1563You may not be able to see the lovely flowers in the background.  I told Talina the couple is in Italy, and I wanted a garden setting.  Again, I think the cover suggests a combination of innocence and carnality.  I only learned later that my friend, Isobel Carr, who’s a perfect stickler for historical accuracy, sewed the garment the woman is wearing.

Here’s another but this time from a contemporary romance.  It’s still rather exotic in that the hero is a prince from a small Eastern European country.

Alice-Gaines_bEAUTY-aWAKENED_Front

I bought the right to use the hero and heroine, and Talina put in the background.  I love it because it suggests a palace, which is the setting of much of the book.

So,  how about you?  What makes a cover make you sit up and take notice.  I’d love to have your opinion, either here or at my e-mail authoralicegaines@gmail.com

 

 

 

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