Freebie Friday

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First in series. from Michelle M Pillow!

Book one of Dragon Lords, part of Michelle M. Pillow’s award winning, bestselling Qurilixen World.


5 Stars! “The author has created a fascinating world with some very intriguing setting and interesting elements that promise to keeps readers entertained with lots of passion, action, suspense and red-hot, sexy alpha males.”


5 Stars! “Five stars are not enough.”


5 Stars! “It will leave you craving for more. If you liked the Dragon Lords, read the Var Princes series. It is the story of the “enemies” of the Dragon Lords and is just as hot.”

Amazon
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Nook
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iBooks
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Learn more about the series world: Qurilixen.com

Free for a limited time. Vendor pricing is final. #Free#PNR #scifi #dragonshifter #dragon #paranormal#romance #freebook

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The other side…

This morning I was catching up on my emails and when I clicked on the one from Ilona Andrews blog(yes, I get the emails because I forget to surf over everyday) and my heart literally clenched when I saw it.

The title is Done, because they are finally done writing the first draft of the last Kate Daniels book. It’s bittersweet because as an author I know the feeling of finally getting through a story that you’ve struggled with (and someday I hope to feel that way with Carnal) and I’m happy for them, but as a reader, ohhh so many feels.

Magic_Triumphs.inddI want to read this book so very much, but at the same time I really don’t want to because it’s the end of that series. One of the very few that I autobuy as soon as the pre-order button comes up. I have it in print and digital so I will always have copies. I dream of someday being able to write a series with so much of everything (love, magic, friendship, family, mystery, violence, humor)in it. And the truly funny thing about my love for this series is that I almost never read it.

You see, I read books one and two, and really enjoyed them, and when I dove into book three I was waiting for Kate and Curran to get together. I mean, they HAD too. When it didn’t really happen, and we didn’t really learn the full extent of Kate’s secret of parentageI gave up. I was upset, and felt it would drag on forever and said I wasn’t going to keep reading the series.

Then book four came out, and  my friend Jordan Summers the wait was worth it. Book four was the payoff and I needed to read it. So I did. She was right. It brought everything home, and I was hooked for life.

Thankfully, just because the Kate Daniels series is ending, the world is not. I look forward to more Julie, more Hugh, more Derek and anything else they dream up.

 

Like Jennifer Estep and Kelley Armstrong, the Ilona Andrews team has become an author I will read, no matter what they put out.

 

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Erotica or Erotic Romance?

This sis something that I wrote an published back in 2006 when Erotic Romance was first starting to boom. For a few years people will were very good about knowing the differences between the two genres, and calling each by what it was. However, in the last couple of years, those lines have disappeared. Im not sure if it’s just because people got lazy and found Erotic Romance too long of a genre name, or what, but it’s very frustrating when this lack of knowledge causes people to judge something unfairly.

I tried to purchase some promotion spots for LUSH, which is on sale for 50% off right now, and was turned down because “we do not promote erotica, pornography, books that contain controversial subject matter or books that may be considered offensive to any race, gender, religion, etc.”

LUSH is romance. No ifs, ands, or buts, about it. All three stories are about the birth and growth of a romantic relationship between a couple, that end in happily ever afters. Yes, there is sex. But there is sex in Life.

You might ask why I am so firm in my opinions on the differences between porn, erotica, and erotic romance. It’s because I have written in all three genres in a professional capacity. I started out writing for porn for Penthouse. Then Erotica for Black Lace, and then erotic romance for Berkley and Kensington. I have made a study of the three genres, and know them intimately. So things like this are vey frustrating, and I just had to speak up.

Like I said, this article was written in 2006, (and published in Erotic Ramblings magazine) and some things may have changed since them – like the fact that regular old romance now is a lot hotter than it used to be. So much hotter that I wouldn’t hesitate to classify LUSH as contemporary romance and not just erotic romance – but the basics still hold true.

And yes,I do believe there are stories, that be can be both erotica and erotic romance. The lines between them are thin, but they are there for those who care to know where they stand.

The difference between Erotica and Erotic Romance
‘The subgenre of Erotic Romance (ER) has been booming for a while now, and with it’s newfound popularity, it sometimes gets confused with Erotica. Readers and writers alike are confused because each publisher seems to have a different idea of what is what. It’s easy to say that the difference between the two is how they end. That ER ends with a “happily ever after” (HEA) and Erotica doesn’t. Or that ER is more story and more love, and erotica is more sex and less emotions. But things just aren’t that simple.

JJ Massa writes Erotic Romances that run the gamut from werewolves, vampires, to Cajuns with special powers. She also writes heterosexual as well as same sex relationships, and is very clear on why her books are romances, not erotica. Why? Because JJ says, “Erotica is the story of a person and their journey at a given point in time, including erotic moments and explicit descriptions of sexual encounters.” And her stories are romances, because they are about the building of the relationships. No matter between two men, or two different species. It’s about the relationship.

Erotica is, and has been a complete genre on its own for decades. A genre that not only encompasses literary stories, but photography and art as well. There doesn’t have to be sex involved to make something erotic. It’s all about feelings elicited. It seems easy for people to look at a photograph and say it’s erotic, even when there is not overt or explicit sex, yet for some reason when a book or story is called erotic, or erotica, it’s expected to be completely about sex.

Now, this is not to say that erotica novels don’t have a lot of sex. What I am saying is, that erotica novels are not only about the sex. Sure, there’s lots of sex in erotica novels, but the sex itself isn’t enough to make the story fit into the genre of Erotica.

I believe it’s completely wrong to say that erotica is “sex for sex’s sake”, or that it’s “emotionally light”. Just because love isn’t one of the prime emotions explored does not mean that there are no heavy emotions explored. What about joy, awe, shame, wonder? Are those not emotions?

In fact, in most mainstream erotica, emotion is the focal point.

Erotica is all about the main character’s journey. The sexual acts and scenes that take place in an erotica story propel the character on a journey. Most often it is one that involves a lot of looking inside oneself and acceptance, as well as adventure and sometimes even intrigue. The sex scenes are explicit, but not gratuitous. They are part of the story and key to the evolving relationships within the story.

I write both Erotic Romance, and mainstream Erotica, and I feel that the idea of erotica only being about superficial relationships is a gross misconception. I’m sure there are many that will not agree with me, but to my way of thinking Erotica is closer to the chic-lit genre than to the romance genre.

Why? Because it’s all about the main character, and the obstacles that character faces. The obstacles could be a job, a boss, money or the fact that the character is realizing that they like to be spanked, or that they enjoy sex with strangers, ort that no matter how much they love their boyfriend, they’re not “in love” with him. The story is about one person’s journey to a satisfying end, not always a traditional HEA.

Erotic Romance is, first and foremost, a romance. However, it is a romance with a high level of erotic scenes in it. A more full-bodied look at the relationship that develops throughout the story. Best selling Erotic Romance author Angela Knight says “In erotic romance, there are two (sometimes three) protagonists, and the objective is the formation of a stable romantic relationship between them.”

Erotic Romance is about the romantic relationship. (Sometimes with a threesome or in sci-fi, and other species) but its primary emotion is LOVE, and a HEA. They just don’t close the bedroom door when it comes to that part of the story.

Erotic Romance author Vivi Anna says it very well when she says; “An erotic romance, is a romance first, and a sexual journey second. The romance is the cake, and the sex is the delicious chocolate icing that is spread across it. The sex scenes just show another part of the characters blossoming relationship.”

I think that sums it up nicely!

Can an Erotica novel be classified as an erotic romance? Some, for sure. Just because it’s erotica doesn’t mean there won’t be romance. It just means the romance is not the main focus of the story. Can an Erotic Romance be classified as Erotica? It’s a bit trickier, I think, but yes, some can.

Many people believe that erotica is all about sex. To me, it’s about the emotions sex can elicit. And Erotic Romance is about the relationship between the hero and the heroine, and the happy ending for them.

All in all, it’s about the focus, and the tone, of the story. It’s not about the amount of sex.

What do you think? Can you tell the difference between these genres?
Have you read LUSH? DO you think it’s Erotic Romance, or erotica?

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Bright Blaze of Magic-a Must Read

BB
One of the gifts of a great storyteller is knowing when, and how, to end the story. Jennifer Estep is one of those truly gifted. The Black Blade series is the second complete series of books by her that I’ve read, and both have ended in a way that left me both supremely satisfied, and slightly sad.

Satisified because she wrapped up every little detail of things in a way that was right for the characters, and the readers. Sad because the stories were so fabulous, and I hated for anything that good to end. However, when one thing ends, another can begin, and I have no doubt that this author will not only continue with her Elemental Assasin series (which is an all time favorite of mine) but that she will also start something else that will put me in awe of the way she blends mythology, magic, and monsters with my favorite kind of hero’s- the morally ambiguous ones. :)

Bright Blaze of Magic releases on April 25, so you have time to catch up with Book 1 and 2 if you haven’t read them yet. Trust me on this, you should read them. I don’t want to say more about this story because I don’t want to out any spoilers out there, but know that it was amazing; filled with all the wonderful and horrible people and monsters I’ve come to expect from this author.

From my review of Cold Burn Of Magic, Black Bade book #1

This world, fits right alongside that of Mythos and Ashland. Magic and monsters abound, but with the same unique twist/feel as Estep’s other books. I, as a writer, find it fantastic the way she can write each series with it’s own unique feel to the world, yet they all blend so well that you know it’s really all the same world, just each characters view of it. Just like we all live in the same world, but see things so differently due to where, and who, we are. This is just one thing that proves Estep is a talent unlike any other.

In the world of Cloudburst Falls, the most magical place on earth, Lila, our young thief/heroine isn’t as Kick-ass as Gin, but she’s young yet. She’s smart, agile (physically and mentally) and cold hearted when she needs to be. She’s also wicked good with a sword.

She’s a bit of a smart-ass too, which is awesome.

But my mom taught me all about the old traditions. I knew which monsters lived where in town, in the forests, and on the mountain, and what small tributes you paid them for safe passage through their territories. In fact, I’d always thought of the monsters as my own sort of standoffish pets. If, you know, you thought pets that could eat you were cool. Which I totally did.

All of the characters, Lila, Mo, Devon, Claudia even the pixie Oscar and butler Reginald are so well drawn you can picture them in your mind. Estep introduces them all, but keeps the story moving a decent pace, and the action never lags. There’s thievery, assassination attempts, sword fights, pixies with pet turtles, people-eating monsters, and a little romance thrown in to even things out. Oh, and bacon. Lots of bacon.

What more could you possibly want?

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Free Book Friday

I haven’t read this one, but I saw it and downloaded it becauseit looks fab. Which means I want to share it with my friends!!

51ZsLnBHNgL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_To Love, Honor and Protect

Detective Clay Blackthorne has his hands full when he promises to safeguard an old college pal’s sister without letting her know what he’s up to. He never imagines that lively Marisol Calderon will knock his socks off and put a ring on his finger–and all at his suggestion! Their marriage of convenience is meant to protect her and Clay doesn’t plan on being hitched for long to the tempting beauty. But the honeymoon sure feels real to him…

Sassy Marisol is used to doing whatever she wants–and right now her plan is to shake up the hot detective’s hard-edged demeanor. But the fun turns to danger when a mystery stalker bent on marrying her marks her as his prey. Temporarily becoming Clay’s wife seems like a practical way to thwart the stalker. But as passion ignites and Marisol falls for the tender heart buried beneath the tough detective’s chest, Clay’s true identity is revealed and she begins to wonder who–if anyone–she can trust…

GET IT FREE right now!

Amazon.com * Amazon.ca * iBooks

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Motivation Monday

My MM post is up at the RAMN blog today. It’s gear toward authors, but readers might find it interesting…or they might find it annoying. LOL

SO I thought I would just post the image here, and a link for writers if they want to read. :)

RAMNpost

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Friday Feature: Incubus

I remember when this story was first published by Loose Id years ago. I loved it then, and I’m thrilled that the author has re-released it.
If you like ghosty, gothic and erotic, you definitely want to check out this Friday Feature!!

10407344_1711392225808382_6753753995929883131_n

Serafina Fisher is having a little trouble sleeping.

It may be because she’s on the verge of breaking up with the fiancé who can’t keep it in his pants.
Or because she’s isolated in a strange, pagan place that whispers secrets in the dark.
Or perhaps thoughts of Gabriel, the sexy stranger who wants her body and soul, are keeping her awake.
Or because the shadowy creature who visits her nightly is driving her to erotic, hungering insanity.

But Serafina Fisher is having a little trouble sleeping…

It’s currently available at the following vendors:
Amazon: http://tinyurl.com/j7oqv4u
B&N: http://tinyurl.com/hd4r9cr
ARe: http://tinyurl.com/zzl6xqk

EXCERPT!!!!

He had long fingernails.
She couldn’t see them in the dark, couldn’t even seem to open her eyes, but she knew they were long. He was using them on her, lightly tickling her nipples with them.
She couldn’t move. She couldn’t stop him, she assured herself. But it was just the tips, the very tips of her nipples that he touched with those nails, flicking them again and again until she squirmed. Her belly tightened, and a fluttering feeling began in her abdomen, stirring up a liquid heat that seeped between her thighs.
And still he grazed just the peaks, even when she lifted her breasts in offering, even when she crossed her legs and tightened the muscles to keep the heat from possessing her. It was frustratingly delicious, like a drop of water on the tongue during a fever, and just as unsatisfactory.
It was driving her insane.
She rolled onto her back, giving him full access to her, and felt the heavy weight of his body against hers, pinning her to the bed.
And still those maddening fingernails played just the nipples, faster and faster now, refusing to touch any other part of her.
“It’s not enough,” she ground out, her hips beginning a slow, helpless gyration. “I want …”
“Yes, Serafina,” he whispered above her, his deep voice urging her on. “Tell me what you want.”
“I want …”
She was nearly breathless now, tingling with an energy that made her afraid, that settled and burned at the apex of her thighs, that made her ache to be touched. “I want … MORE!”
His huge hands abruptly seized her sensitized breasts, grabbing them with a possessive strength that made her gasp and sit…

… Straight up in the bed.
She stumbled into the bathroom, clicking on the blinding light and shoveling cold water onto her face with shaking hands.
Something was wrong here, terribly, terribly wrong. This was not like her. She wasn’t a particularly sex-oriented being. Oh, she had her occasional fantasies, her brief dreams of faceless men with useful, non-threatening genitalia.
But nothing like this. Never like this.
She didn’t have dreams that left her trembling and wet, thirsting for more. She’d never been that kind of girl, and sex had never been the earth-shattering experience it was reputed to be.
She stared at the haunted face in the mirror. She’d always thought it plain. “High-yellow,” her father had called it. “You couldn’t possibly belong to me.” She agreed. She’d always felt that, too. She didn’t belong to anyone, anywhere.
“A nice mix of coffee and cream,” Steve always said.
“Exquisite.” Gabriel had called her “exquisite.”
Sera didn’t feel exquisite. She felt tired and ill-used, and shadowy crescents had formed under her eyes. She had stayed up the night before, packing and preparing for the trip. The death of Steven’s cousin had been sudden and violent and, naturally, he was upset. Serafina had even driven for most of the ten-hour trip. She wanted to be a comfort to him. But twenty-four-plus hours of no sleep had taken its toll.
She apprehensively peeled back the plunging neckline of her gown and examined her breasts. The crests seemed unusually dark and taut, the skin sensitive, but there were no scratches, no abrasions.
What had she expected? It was just a dream, after all.
She quickly showered and dressed, leaving her hair to air-dry into dangling corkscrew curls. It was nearly noon. She had to get out of this house. Slipping into a good pair of denims and walking shoes, she considered making the bed, decided against it, and hurried out into the crisp afternoon air.
❄ ❄ ❄

Millcreek, Virginia, was an old Civil War town, now rapidly deteriorating into abandoned homes and an aged, sparse populace. Situated near the magnificent George Washington National Forest, it was lush with greenery and ripe with spectacular views at unexpected turns in the road. The air was clean and chilled, waiting to be warmed by afternoon sun, and Sera immediately felt invigorated as she trudged the mile and a quarter from the cabin.
Pyle’s General Store sat in the heart of downtown Millcreek, a sprawling metropolis of four large brick buildings. Sera smiled at the huge pickle barrel at the entrance of the store, and the dirt-yellow dog and two old men in rockers parked on the front porch.
The interior was a chaotic blend of souvenirs, supplies, car parts, and innumerable Confederate flags of every imaginable size. The moldy heads of long-dead animals hung frozen on the walls, their glassy orbs fixed upon twirling, feathered dreamcatchers that danced above the crowded aisles.
She felt the eyes of the owners fasten on her as soon as she entered. Mr. and Mrs. Pyle wore cheery red nametags identifying themselves. Sera wondered if she was wearing one that said “shoplifter.”
“Hello,” she murmured politely. Ignoring their silent stares, she picked through slovenly stacks of materials.
“Afternoon.” Mr. Pyle spat a wad of tobacco on the warped wooden floor. “You ain’t from ’round these parts.”
“No. But don’t worry.” She smirked. “The money’s green where I come from, too.”
He leaned over the counter, trying, she was sure, to get a clear look at her behind. “Staying up there at that new fishing shack, ain’tcha? Single girl, are ya?”
“Yep.” She considered a broken rack of colorful, crocheted shawls. “There’s only one of me.”
Mr. Pyle sauntered away to answer a telephone in the dark recesses of some back room, mumbling something to himself about “uppity Northern folk deservin’ what they git” as Mrs. Pyle slipped from behind the counter.
“You’re staying in the Manning house?” she asked quietly.
Serafina took stock of the woman she’d barely noticed upon entering. She was late-middle-aged plump, dressed carelessly in an old checkered dress that gaped open at the bosom. Her hair was a mix of metallic blond and gray, and she wore no makeup. But her speech was clear, lacking some of the pronounced accent of her husband’s, and her faded blue eyes were sharp and intelligent.
“Yes. But I’d hardly call the shack ‘new.’ My fiancé and I are sleeping over for a few days. Death in the family.”
Mrs. Pyle nodded. “Lots of women from around here have stayed there. Menfolk like to use it when they’re fishing. Are you … are you alone up there right now?”
Sera paused, picked out one ivory-colored wrap with an elegant fringe finish — and lied. “No. No, my boyfriend’s at the house waiting for me. I just felt like taking a walk.”
She brought the shawl to the counter and dug into her purse in search of money as Mrs. Pyle sidled over to the antique cash register. “No, he’s not,” said the older woman.
“I beg your pardon?”
“You’re all alone up there. I can tell.” She unlocked the cash drawer, caught it, and shoved it back in. “You look tired.”
Sera started, dropping the twenty-dollar bill she was passing to the woman. “Wha– what did you say?”
“I said that’ll be fifteen ninety-nine.” The older woman spoke loudly enough for her husband to hear, then pressed Serafina’s change into her hand, studying her. “You’re a pretty little thing, you know that?”
Sera reached for her bag, flustered. “I don’t –”
“Except for the shadows. You carry the specter of shadows just there, beneath your eyes. You look tired, child. As if you haven’t slept.” The woman grinned and leaned forward with a sinister wink, whispering. “I know how that is. Like you had an itch your whole life, one you couldn’t quite get a handle on — and you finally got it scratched, hmmm?”
Sera retreated from the counter, a thousand icy pins prickling the nape of her neck. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
“It’s all right, sweetie. You just run back on up there, and get as much rest as you can. As often as you can.” Mrs. Pyle laughed, digging a rough finger inside the scooped neckline of her dress and into her cleavage. “I won’t tell if you won’t.”
Serafina ran. Ran as if her life depended on it, out of the store, down the road, and around the spur until the horrid little shop was completely out of view. She slowed her pace only when she ran out of breath and her feet began to feel like lead boots. It was one big asylum, this little hole-in-the-wall town. What in God’s name was the woman talking about? She’d mentioned that cabin, that nightmarish little cabin that forbade sleep. How had Mrs. Pyle known? She’d behaved as if Sera understood, as if they shared some dirty little secret. It made her want to vomit. And a small, forbidden voice in the back of Sera’s mind, like the sounds from the lake at night, whispered, “You know. You know …”

Be sure to run and get this story now. It’s unique, and wonderful. You’ll enjoy it for sure.

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