Saturday, January 31, 2015

*The Many Faces of Love* February Challenge

♥♥ Serious About Series ♥♥ discussion

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February is the month to celebrate love. Valentine's Day brings romantic love into focus, but have you ever thought about how many different kinds of love there are? Certainly romance authors have thought about it, and it seems that we'll read about just about any variation! This month, challenge yourself to discover some new ones.

Here's how the challenge will work:

1. Choose a level -
2 - 4 books...Novice lover
5 - 7 books...You're a player!
8+ books......You're a romantic fool!

2. Choose your categories (choose a minimum of 2, no maximum)
First Love - read a NA or YA romance
Second Chance Love - read about 2 people getting their second chance together
Erotic Love - read a romance with erotic content
Forbidden Love - read a book with dark or taboo content, or a book with star-crossed lovers
Long Lost Love - read a historical romance
Fantastical Love - read a fantasy(Urban Fantasy included) or time-travel romance
Dangerous Love - read a romantic-suspense, or a Paranormal Romance

3. Choose your books, and set up a tracking post.

4. Share the love! Tell us how you like the books you've read (include a link to your review if you wish)

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1. My level:
8+ books......You're a romantic fool!

2. Choose your categories (choose a minimum of 2, no maximum)
First Love - read a NA or YA romance
Stay With Me by J Lynn

Erotic Love - read a romance with erotic content
One Night of Sin by Elle Kennedy
From This Moment On by Bella Andre
Ecstasy by Bella Andre
Her Billionaires Complete Collection #1-#4 by Julia Kent
It's Complicated by Julia Kent
Random Acts of Fantasy by Julia Kent
Random Acts of Hope by Julia Kent
Somebody's Wife by Jasmine Haynes
Changing the Game by Jaci Burton
One Sweet Ride by Jaci Burton

Forbidden Love - read a book with dark or taboo content, or a book with star-crossed lovers
Content No In Between by Lisa Renee Jones
Content Leah's Seduction #1-#10 by Emily Jane Trent
Content Dark Desire by Emily Jane Trent
Content  Chased by Lauren Dane

Long Lost Love - read a historical romance
Darling Beast by Elizabeth Hoyt
A Night to Surrender by Tessa Dare

Dangerous Love - read a romantic-suspense, or a Paranormal Romance
RS- Whispers in the Dark by Maya Banks
RS- Giving Chase by Lauren Dane
RS- Taking Chase by Lauren Dane

Second Chance Love - read about 2 people getting their second chance together
Hold on Tight by Abbi Glines
What Once Was Perfect by Zoe York
On Lavender Lane by JoAnn Ross
Wedding Bands by Ev Bishop

Fantastical Love - read a fantasy(Urban Fantasy included) or time-travel romance
Time-Travel Stay With Me by Beverly Long

Tell Me by Olivia Cunning


One Night With Sole Regret #6
This installment of Gabe and Melanie's affair is HOT. Gabe misses her so much so he invites her to their show in New Orleans and he plans on taking her to his home outside of Austin. But when Melanie's flight is about to take off her friend Nikki shows up. Melanie is upset. Nikki is always horning in on her fun and making things difficult. Nikki wants another night with Shade but does not listen when both Melanie and Gabe tell her that Shade has a woman now. Then Shade tells her - and not very nicely, Nikki freaks out. But Gabe gets her whisked away to the hotel after Melanie tells her that she is not going ruin her time with Gabe.
They go to Gabe's home and everything is great. Melanie even meets his parents and they love her. Then a couple of things happen that change their good time. Are they really meant for each other?

I love this couple!

From the author:
He had planned a perfect weekend for her…
Gabriel "Force" Banner has been unable to get a certain sexy accountant out of his head. Sole Regret's inventive drummer has created big plans to keep sweet Melanie entertained all weekend long. Unfortunately, Melanie arrives for their rendezvous with a bit of baggage that just might ruin their fun.

She didn't mean to make things difficult…
Melanie wouldn't blame Gabe if he left her at the airport with her bit of baggage, but he's determined to make their limited time together work. When they leave behind the bustle of New Orleans and the rock 'n' roll scene to visit his serene oasis outside of Austin, Texas, their romantic weekend seems to be back on track. But life has a way of butting in at the worst possible times.
Can they learn how to support each other in the face of adversity or will reality destroy their budding relationship before it even takes flight?

Excerpt:
Chapter One
This is bullshit, Gabe thought.
Lounging in his favorite recliner, he crossed his legs at the ankle and took another draw off his Corona as he tried not to glare at the latest intruder on Sole Regret’s tour bus. They had yet another woman touring with the band. As if it wasn’t bad enough that the pregnant chick had decided to set up camp on the bus sofa, now Kellen was courting some red-headed ice queen who’d taken up permanent residence at his hip, and Shade’s ex-sister-in-law turned f**k-buddy kept showing up at their gigs unannounced. He was sure that if Adam’s woman didn’t have to work and Owen’s new flame wasn’t pretending she was mad at him, they’d be on the bus too. And here Gabe was telling Melanie that she couldn’t join them on the road. That the band had a rule about women on tour, and rightly so.
Well, screw that. If the rest of the guys were allowed a little female company to occupy them during the long, boring hours between concerts, then he sure as hell wasn’t going to upset Melanie again by making her feel unwelcome. She was more than welcome as far as he was concerned. Assuming she even wanted to ride on the tour bus. Spending countless hours on the road with a bunch of guys wasn’t exactly the perpetual party everyone thought it was.
Gabe set his beer aside and pulled his phone out of his pocket. He dialed Melanie’s number, his jaw set in a hard line. He wasn’t going to consult the band on this. He didn’t care if they thought he was pussy-whipped, or worse, in love with the sweet little accountant he’d met in Tulsa. He shouldn’t have to take shit for inviting Melanie to the show that night. The guys hadn’t bothered asking if their women could join the tour, so why should he be the only one following the rules?
“Hey, you,” Melanie answered. Her soft voice made the back of his neck tingle with pleasure. “I was just thinking about you. I can’t wait to see you tomorrow night. Did you make it to New Orleans?”
“We’re on the road somewhere in southern Louisiana. We should be there in an hour or two. Are you at work?”
“Yeah, but I can take a little break,” she said. “This spreadsheet can wait.”
He was counting on that. “Can it wait until Monday?”
“Huh? Why?”
“I miss you.” He glanced up to make sure the guys hadn’t heard that because even though he was willing to go to bat for Melanie, he’d be much more comfortable if he kept his love life and his band mates as far apart as possible.
If any of the guys had heard what he’d just said to Melanie, no one said anything. Not even Owen, who lived for messing with people. It was weird that the guys had stopped going ballistic any time one of them showed the slightest weakness for a woman. Hell, Kellen was holding Dawn’s hand in front of everyone and no one had said a thing about it. And Dawn was gazing into Kellen’s eyes as if entranced and speaking to him in a soft, sensual tone. Or she was when she wasn’t too busy laughing at Owen’s stream of jokes. Now wasn’t that just a homey trio?
Granted, Gabe was in a bad mood. Sexy conversations, video chats, and text messages from Melanie had him so horny he couldn’t think straight. He hadn’t seen her in five days and five long, lonely, cock-in-a-permanent-semi-rigid-state nights. The woman had him so worked up, he was surprised he hadn’t done something truly embarrassing. Like fly to Wichita on one of Sole Regret’s rare nights off just to see her.
“I miss you too,” she said. “I stopped at a lingerie shop on the way home from work last night. I was going to keep it a secret and surprise you with my new garters and thong—”
“Don’t!” he interrupted. “I can’t take another set of blue balls, Mel.”
“I could help you with those,” she said in that voice he associated with sex, though they hadn’t even had actual sex since she’d started using that sensual tone. Yeah, she had him all sorts of out of his head and into a mentality that focused solely on satiating his libido. With her. He hadn’t even considered sating his lust with another woman, even though he was hornier than a herd of longhorn cattle.
“I’ll head for the ladies room and put you on video chat,” she said in a sultry voice. “I’ll show you what you do to me and then you can show me what I do to you.”
Hell yeah, he could.

Read more here.

Ebook159 pages
Published June 14th 2013 by Vulpine Press

Tie Me by Olivia Cunning


One Night With Sole Regret #5
Kellen is happy that Owen has found Caitlyn but he cannot let go of Sara. She has been dead for 5 years. He must keep the promises he made to her so he decides to go out to the beach house he bought after she died. He gets to Galveston and he just can't go in the house. He walks to the water and throws the cuff that reminds him of Sara into the ocean. It's storming and raining hard. The cuff comes back with the next wave. Then he hears some music. Someone is playing the piano and then yelling. She goes out onto the deck and sees him. She says something to him but he can't hear because of the storm. The music does something to him. He needs to hear more of it.
Her name is Dawn. She is a beautiful redhead. But she is consumed by her music and she's alone because of it. When Kellen comes to the door, she is surprised by how hot he is. She wants him.
He sees her and something inside him starts to change.
He helps her write the song and it changes his life. But the next morning he runs away. Will he let her back in and let go of Sara?

I loved this one. Kellen needs to let go of Sara and the promises he made to her when she was dying or he will destroy himself.

From the author:
His heart is tied to his past… 
When Sole Regret’s rhythm guitarist, Kellen Jamison, vowed to be faithful to his fiancĂ©e and love her forever, he meant it. He never expected to lose her to cancer so early in life. He’s certain he’ll never love again, but destiny has another plan for him.

Her heart is tied to her work… 
Grammy-winning classical composer and piano virtuoso, Dawn O’Reilly, is overwhelmed with music-writing deadlines, a fickle muse, and high-expectations. She doesn’t have time to find love, but chance seeks to interfere with her carefully devised plans.

They’re bound to become entangled… 
From the instant Kellen hears Dawn’s latest musical composition, his spirits rise. The stirring melody and the remarkable woman responsible for its creation are impossible to resist. His attraction is undeniable; her passion unquenchable. Kellen teaches Dawn there’s freedom in bondage, while her sensuality drives him to unleash his tightly controlled self-restraint. Will the ropes Kellen uses to secure Dawn’s body be the force that binds them together or ultimately sever all ties between them?


Excerpt:
Chapter One
The night washed over Kellen, wrapping him in a cocoon of nothingness. The occasional flashes of yellow in the distant clouds would soon be overhead, and he’d have to go inside. Although a powerful storm brewed over the Gulf of Mexico, he wasn’t ready to face that empty house. He’d just stay on the beach until resolve proved stronger than dread.
As the flickers above the horizon intensified, the wind picked up, whipping his long hair around his neck and face. He stared out at the endless water, fighting shivers as the damp bite of the salty sea air drew warmth from his body. His skin had become numb. He wished the Gulf breeze could numb the raw ache deep in his chest. Would the feeling that part of him was missing ever leave or was he destined to feel empty for the rest of his life? Sara’s loss was still as tangible to him as it had been five years ago when he’d stared at that f**king heart rate monitor, holding his breath, waiting for just one more blip. Just one more.
Just one more, Sara. I’ll do anything.
It had never come.
All the hope in the world—all the love he had to give—hadn’t amounted to anything in the end.
Beneath the angry clouds, the water looked like shifting obsidian—shiny, black glass with peaks and valleys. Random curves of white froth approached the damp sand at Kellen’s feet and then receded, a ceaseless pattern of surge and withdrawal. The surf toyed with him—slowly retreating as the tide went out. Waves churned beneath the power of the storm, sometimes washing over his bare feet and drawing the sand from beneath his soles, but those waves never claimed him. Never pulled him under. Kellen stepped forward, following the slowly ebbing water, knowing eventually the sea would push him back toward the shore as the tide returned. There was little a man could count on in life, but he could count on the tides. And Kellen could count on memories of Sara haunting him.
He glanced over his shoulder at the dark house behind him. It was painted a sunny yellow, but at night it looked gray. Cheerless. Not like the happy place he’d shared with her before she’d gotten sick.
Oh, look at this house, Kellen, Sara’s cheerful voice echoed through his memory. Wouldn’t it be fun to rent it for a week and pretend it’s ours? I’ve never seen the ocean. I want to see it for the first time with you.
Kellen had peered at the computer screen over Sara’s shoulder. She’d flipped through pictures of an enormous, sunny yellow vacation rental with open, airy rooms, inviting furnishings, and sprawling decks with beach views.
You want to go see the ocean, honey. We go, he’d said. How much is it?
She’d clicked on a reservation link and both their jaws had dropped when the weekly rental rate had been displayed. She’d closed the laptop and looked up at him, her big blue eyes drawing him in. Like a riptide, they’d always pulled him under.
I don’t need that, she’d said. I have you. And she’d kissed him the way only Sara could kiss. A kiss that stirred his body into a heated frenzy. A kiss that touched his heart and soul. Her kiss had always turned him inside out. That’s what love did to him. That’s why Kellen needed it and at the same timenever wanted to find it again.
So Kellen had done what any fool in love with his perfect girl would do. He’d hocked his most prized possession—his late grandfather’s vintage Les Paul guitar—and surprised Sara with a week in her dream house. She hadn’t made him feel bad about giving up his guitar. She turned the sacrifice of his most cherished belonging into a week of his most cherished memories. The delight on her face as she’d stood in front of that obnoxiously large vacation rental with her hands clutched before her chest had been worth any cost.
I love you more than all the water in the ocean. All the grains of sand on the beaches. All the stars in the sky, she’d said as she’d flung herself into his waiting arms.
That’s a lot of love, he’d said, burying his nose in her sweet-smelling hair and taking a moment to just feel her. She was his everything. She would be his forever. He didn’t doubt it for an instant.
I love you more than that, Kellen. So much more.
Me too, honey.
Kellen swallowed hard and closed his eyes against the echoes of the past.
Memories of Sara continually tormented Kellen. They ripped his f**king heart out. Regardless, he sought things that reminded him of her. Losing her body and soul had been difficult enough. Losing those memories? He couldn’t take that too. He needed reminders of her. Constant reminders. That’s why, even though she was gone, he’d bought that huge f**king house on the Galveston shore as soon as he could afford it. Money had become a non-issue after Sole Regret’s second album had gone platinum and they sold out concert after concert on their first headlining tour. What would Sara think of his success? Would she be proud? Jealous? She’d never understood his need to make music.

Read more here.

ebook159 pages
Published June 14th 2013 by Vulpine Press

Touch Me by Olivia Cunning



One Night With Sole Regret #4
This time out it's Owen's turn to find love. He was the fat kid growing up. The other kids picked on him. He only had one friend and that was Kellen, the poor kid. Who knew the would grow up to be hot rockers! Owen does not like women his age because they could not see past his weight. Now women only want him because he's famous.
He and Kellen go to a sex club in San Antonio. He sees a beautiful woman sitting by herself. Caitlyn is there to get some revenge on her ex for dumping her for a much much younger woman. She feels so unappealing. Owen goes over and talks to her. He brings her over to meet Kellen. They talk about sex  and go to a private room. Caitlyn is wonderful. Owen was wonderful.

They are made for each other. She doesn't feel beautiful. She was the geeky smart girl in high school. He still thinks of himself as the fat kid.
Will everything work out?

From the author:
He went there looking for a sure bet…

Sole Regret’s bassist, Owen Mitchell, is convinced that romance is for chumps. He’s only looking for a good time, and when he spots an attractive, older woman emitting men-suck vibes at a brand new sex club, he’s sure he’s found it.

She went there hoping to get over her ex-husband…

Successful business woman, Caitlyn Hanson, is still infuriated and hurt over her ex-husband’s affair with a much younger woman. She’s only looking to scrub his claim from her body by offering it to the first attractive man who shows her interest, and the young, hot stud, who just sat down at her table, will do quite nicely.

They never meant to get personal…

Caitlyn knows she’s not supposed to get attached to Owen just because he gives her body pleasure unlike any she’s ever known, but it’s her first one-night-stand and she can’t seem to keep her heart out of the equation. For once, Owen finds himself in the same conundrum. He likes Caitlyn too much to keep his heart at a safe distance, but will a mistake from Owen’s past drive her away forever?


Excerpt:
Chapter One
Tonight, Owen’s band, Sole Regret, would perform in San Antonio. Tomorrow night? Houston, maybe. And then New Orleans. Or was it Beaumont? Owen wasn’t sure. The tour dates were starting to run together. He just got on the tour bus after the show and went wherever it took him. At least he knew they were still in his home state of Texas. He’d seen his family in Austin the night before, so some of his homesickness had abated. He loved touring with the guys, but his family had always been a tight-knit bunch, so he missed them when they weren’t tousling his hair as if he were a four-year-old and insisting he have another biscuit with his fried chicken.
Owen stood behind the main stage, watching the crew make last-minute adjustments to the fire fountains and spark cannons. The fans had no idea how much work went into setting up the stage so Sole Regret could play for a mere hour. No one ever cheered for the stagehands, but their crew’s hard work had paid off—the band would be live in less than five minutes. Owen appreciated all they did. He’d climbed out of bed that morning ready to hit the stage and without the crew, there wouldn’t be a stage.
While he waited, Owen wrapped his hand around the dog tags dangling from a chain around his neck, closed his eyes, and sent a silent prayer to his older brother, Chad, currently serving in Afghanistan. Be safe. Come home soon, soldier. Be safe.
Owen prayed the same words before every concert. His routine. As if the powers that be were more likely to hear his prayers right before he went onstage. As if the energy of Sole Regret’s fans made his pleas more noteworthy to Chad’s guardian angel. Owen imagined that particular angel worecombat boots and camouflage. And carried a big f**king gun. Chad’s angel of no mercy would keep him safe. Owen had faith.
Someone leaned against Owen’s arm, and Owen knew it was Kelly before he even opened his eyes.
Kelly’s mouth was set in a grim line, and his dark brown eyes held concern. If Owen hadn’t known Kelly as well as he knew himself, he’d have thought he was always serious and stern. Kelly did loosen up on occasion, but only around people he knew well.
The leather strap supporting Kelly’s cobalt-blue Les Paul guitar cut into his bare chest when he lifted a hand to give Owen’s shoulder a comforting squeeze.
“Heard from Chad lately?” Kelly asked.
Owen sometimes wondered if his best friend could read his mind.
“He’s supposed to Skype me tomorrow morning. Well, it will be night where he is.”
“Tell him I said hey,” Kelly said.
“Tell him yourself. I’m not your messenger boy.”
Owen knew Chad liked to see familiar faces. Not just family or his girlfriend or all the friends who were waiting for him in Austin, but Kelly too. Chad had been a big brother to both of them, mostly knocking their heads together when they were being insufferable idiots, but he’d also stepped into a protective role more than once. Kelly had done his part to lessen the bullying Owen had endured in high school, but occasionally Chad’s older, bigger fists had been necessary to get the point across.
Owen had plenty of friends now, but there had been a time when Kelly had been his only one. He was still Owen’s best friend. Always would be. As members of the same band, he and Kelly spent more time together than should be allowable by law. That hadn’t changed. Probably never would. But other things between them had changed in the past six months.

Read more here.

ebook158 pages
Published April 19th 2013 by Smashwords (first published April 18th 2013)

Take Me by Olivia Cunning

One Night With Sole Regret #3
Jabob "Shade" Silverton is the lead singer of Sole Regret. He has an ex-wife and four year old daughter. His ex is a huge bitch. He was faithful to her until she accused him constantly of cheating and never believed him when he said he didn't. So he started cheating while on tour. They divorced. Tina cannot get over it. She keeps Julie from him all the time. Now he is a manwhore.
His ex's sister, Amanda, let him know about Julie's birthday party. He bought a diamond and sapphire tiara for her. Tina was pissed but Julie loved it.
Amanda felt bad for Jacob. She has always had a thing for him, even before Tina and Jacob got together. She snuck out of Tina's house to talk to Jacob. They end up going back to his place. Jacob knows he married the wrong sister. He wants Amanda and has for awhile. They act on their feelings but the guys in the band say they are crazy. Will they make it?

Loved this one!! These characters are very well written!

From the author:
She is one woman he should never touch…

Sole Regret’s enigmatic vocalist, Jacob “Shade” Silverton, is a consummate womanizer, but even he knows better than to get involved with one special woman from his past. Mixing friendship and pleasure can only lead to a broken heart, and he’s suffered enough heartache to swear off relationships for a lifetime.

He is one man she has always desired…

Amanda Lange knows all about Shade’s naughty reputation, but that doesn’t stop her from wanting to dive into the gorgeous rock star’s arms and into his bed. She convinces herself that one night of passion won’t complicate their friendship, but can she convince him of that?

They’re both playing with fire.

Neither of them realized how far one kiss would take them. As the flames of their passion ignite with the intensity of an inferno, will either of them escape the experience without being burned or will both be branded fool enough to take a chance on a relationship that was marked for ruin before it even began?


Excerpt:

Shade’s day had just gone from crap to shit. A hollow feeling of disbelief spread from his throat to his chest, and then rage crawled up the back of his neck. He stared at the empty parking spot between Kellen’s Firebird and Owen’s Jeep, trying to comprehend the absence of the ton of steel he’d left there. Shade glanced around the parking lot. Maybe his memory was fuzzy. Maybe he hadn’t parked in his usual space. Two semi-trucks containing Sole Regret’s equipment and stage setup had already been backed into the fenced lot so they’d be ready to head to San Antonio the next day. Their tour bus was on the opposite side of the lot. The band’s drummer, Gabe, was pulling his overnight bag from the luggage compartment beneath the bus. Everyone else—band and crew—was already heading for their vehicles. The only distinctly empty spot on the lot was the one where Shade had parked his favorite toy.
“Okay,” he yelled. “This isn’t funny. Who hid my car?”
“I’m not a rocket scientist or anything,” Kellen said, “but I’d say it’s been stolen.” He tossed his overnight bag into his Firebird’s trunk.
“That’s what you get for being a douche and buying a hundred-and-fifty-thousand-dollar vehicle,” Owen said with a smirk.
“You should call the cops and report it,” Kellen said. He secured his long black hair at the nape of his neck with a leather strap he’d collected from his bag. Then he opened his car door and said, “I’d stay and wallow in your misery, but I’m late for an appointment.”
Shade knew the feeling. “I don’t have time for this right now,” he said. “I have places I need to be. I’ve already missed my chance to crash Julie’s party, but I don’t want her to think I forgot her birthday entirely.” He tossed his overnight bag on the ground where his car’s trunk should have been. “Fuck!”
“Where’s your car?” Adam paused between Owen and Shade.
Adam was the band’s lead guitarist and in second place on Shade’s shit list, right after whoever had stolen his ride. The three musicians stared at the empty parking spot as if expecting the car to suddenly uncloak itself and come out of hiding.
Shade was already pissed at Adam for making them hours late getting home. Adam had spent over half the day lounging around a hotel with his drugabuse counselor—who obviously wasn’t very good at what she did, because Shade had caught Adam using drugs backstage just two nights before. It would have served Adam right if the band and crew had left him to find his own way from Dallas to Austin. Maybe that would’ve taught the selfish prick a lesson. Everyone else had been looking forward to this day off in their home town, but the only person who mattered to Adam was Adam.
“I swear if I miss Julie’s birthday, you’re going to need a very good dentist,” Shade said to Adam.
“Why? I didn’t steal your car,” Adam said. “But I will give you a ride.”
Shade was surprised he’d offered, but Adam rode a motorcycle, and Shade didn’t think it was wise to be that close to him at freeway speeds. As pissed as Shade was, he’d probably strangle him to death from behind.
Owen slapped Adam in the center of the chest. “Hey, don’t worry about it. I already said I’d drive him. Julie’s house isn’t far from mine.”
And technically, Adam’s was even closer, but Owen knew how ticked off Shade was, and if the band lost both its vocalist and lead guitarist in a fiery motorcycle crash, they’d be shit out of luck.
Adam shrugged. “All right. But, Shade, once you cool down a bit, we need to have a man-to-man.”
Shade didn’t want to talk to him. His blood pressure was already high enough to cause a massive stroke. Nothing Adam could say would ever earn Shade’s forgiveness.

Read more here.

ebook226 pages
Published October 26th 2012 by Vulpine Press (first published October 12th 2012)

Colters' Promise by Maya Banks


Colters' Legacy #4
In this story, Lily finds out that she is pregnant. She is afraid. But her husbands convince her that nothing will happen with this baby. Holly goes to the hospital. Max and Callie go to New York and bring his sister Lauren home with them. She was in an abusive relationship and needed to get away. Being home in Clyde and having the family together will heal everyone.

This one was okay.

From the author:
When it came to overcoming the odds of a tragic past, Lily was determined to move on. The three Colter brothers helped her do it. They taught her new ways to love, new dreams to share, and offered her a new life that she never thought possible. Now is a time for celebration, and what better way than with a long-awaited family reunion, a homecoming that will bring together the entire Colter family and a few surprises no one anticipated.
But first, there’s still something from Lily’s past she still needs to reconcile—even when all the while she is holding close to her heart a newfound secret that will change her future, forever enrich the Colter legacy, and make every promise come true.


Excerpt:
Adam Colter watched as his wife, Holly, decorated the huge family Christmas tree with Ethan and Ryan hovering to make sure she didn’t fall off the ladder.

It’s not that they wouldn’t have been more than happy to decorate while she oversaw the project, but Holly was determined that she hang every ornament and exclaim over each one as she did so. Every single one reflected a memory for the Colter family through the years, and each Christmas the tree grew heavier with those collected memories.

Maybe it was his age, but he seemed to grow more nostalgic with each passing year. He’d watched his children grow up under this very roof. He and his brothers had watched their wife blossom under their love and protective umbrella, and in return she’d given them something so infinitely precious that they could never want for more.

Now his children had spread their wings. They’d left the nest and yet they were all right here, surrounding him. All had come back. There had been several points in his life when he couldn’t have imagined being happier. The births of his children. Callie being born in the meadow. Holly returning to him and his brothers when they’d thought they’d lost her. But nothing compared to right here, right now.

His wife slipped her arms around his waist and hugged him to her. “What has you so deep in thought over here?”

He blinked, realizing that the tree was done and the lights sparkled like tiny diamonds hung over the thick limbs. He smiled and leaned down to kiss the top of her head.

“I was just thinking about my children and my wife.”

Holly turned her face up and smiled back. “Good thoughts then.”

“The best.”


ebook256 pages
Published June 5th 2012 by Penguin Group (USA)

Colters' Daughter by Maya Banks

Colters' Legacy # 3
Max has come back for Callie. He's finally gotten his head straight but he needs to convince her to forgive him for leaving her in Greece and not coming back after his mother died. Callie has mourned the lost of her relationship. She doesn't know why Max never came back like he said. But when he walks into her brother's bar, she tells him to leave, then smashed his jaw. He will not give up.
He pursues her and gets her to come to Denver with him for a week so they can reconnect and resume their sexual (Dom/sub) relationship away from her family. It works. They are back together again and very happy. Will it last? She takes him home to meet her mom and dads, and her brothers and their wife. But her cop brother investigated Max. Uh oh! What did he find out?

I liked this story. Max is lucky that Callie loves him so much. It's all bout forgiveness.

From the author:
He let her go once. This time he’s playing for keeps. Callie Colter once chased sunsets all over the world. Until Max. Together they were a perfect storm of desire, and she reveled in the beautiful burn. Then he disappeared, and the betrayal drove her home to lick her wounds. Who knew he’d have the gall to show his face in her brother’s bar. Max Wilder figures he deserves Callie’s right hook to the jaw, but it changes nothing. He had his reasons for pursuing her across Europe, for making her fall in love with him. But when she took everything he gave and offered more, she changed all the rules. He had no choice in leaving her, but now he’s back. This time for the right reasons. Callie is angry and hurt but powerless against Max’s relentless onslaught. He’ll settle for nothing less than her complete surrender—and her love. Only when she’s back in his arms will he be truly happy. And the damning truth can stay safely tucked away. Except the truth has a way of creeping to the surface, and now Max is out of second chances.


Excerpt:
The Mountain Pass Bar and Grill was hopping like frogs during mating season. It was early summer and past ski season, but the little town of Clyde still managed to pull tourists from the larger neighboring towns. Not to mention, Saturday was local’s night when all the residents of Clyde decided to let their hair down and imbibe a little.

Callie Colter slid another drink down the bar to a waiting customer then loaded up her waitress’s tray with a round of draft beers and sent her back into the crowd.

Taking advantage of the momentary lull in the action, Callie leaned back against the counter and surveyed the mass of people packed into The Mountain Pass. The live band pounded out a raucous country song that had the dance floor filled to capacity with people line dancing. A skill Callie had never felt it necessary to learn. Nor had she the ability. She had the rhythm of a slug.

And really, the whole line dancing thing? She was still scarred from having to watch a really hokey George Strait movie—courtesy of her brothers.

Her mother swore Callie was the cosmopolitan one in the family. Callie had been all over the world, but the reality was she was a homebody at heart and there was no better place than the sanctuary of her family—as oddball as it was.

And so here she was, licking her wounds and brooding about asshole males. Quite amusing when you considered she had three—yes three—fathers and three brothers, and none of them fell under the asshole label, and no, she wasn’t being biased. It didn’t mean the rest of the male population didn’t suffer the disease though.

She reached down to wipe her hands on the towel hanging from her waist when the music stopped. She glanced up to see the drummer motion to her that they were taking five. She nodded and set about getting the band members a round of beer.

“Hello, Callie.”

The husky voice whispered over her ears and sent chill bumps down her neck. She froze, her hand still on the tap.

It couldn’t be. No way Max was here in her little town, in Dillon’s bar.

She yanked her hand back and swore when beer foamed over the glass. Then she whipped her head up, sure she’d imagined that voice.

A pair of hunter green eyes fringed by a set of dark lashes that would make a female weep in envy stared penetratingly back at her. She stared, mouth open, at Max Wilder who stood arrogantly across the bar like he expected her to fall at his feet or squeal in delight to see him.

It would be a cold day in hell before she’d do either.

She narrowed her eyes, and he must have gotten some hint of the welcome he was about to receive because he held a hand up as if to ward her off.

“We need to talk, Callie.”

“Bullshit.”

His eyes widened in surprise. She leaned forward and crooked her finger for him to come closer. Eyeing her warily, he bent toward her and looked like he was about to speak again.

She balled her fist and swung as hard as she could. His head snapped back, and pain exploded in her fingers.

He grabbed at his jaw and staggered back. “Son of a bitch! Goddamn, Callie, give me a chance to explain.”

“You’ve got two seconds to get the hell out of my bar or I’m calling the cops. And did I mention that my brother’s the sheriff?” she added sweetly.

Carl, her bouncer, thrust his huge body between Max and the bar, blocking Callie’s view. “You heard the lady. Beat it.”

Read more here.


ebook240 pages
Published February 1st 2011 by Samhain Publishing