Posts Tagged ‘strong female lead romance’

FIRST KISS=TUESDAY from BLACK HILLS LEGACY: The Inheritance by Debra Salonen #NEWRELEASE

Tuesday, April 25th, 2017

 BLACK HILLS LEGACY – The Inheritance

Black Hills Rendezvous, Book 10

 

Black Hills Legacy (The Inheritance)

Nothing like an unconscious doppelgänger to ruin a perfectly good day at the Mystery Spot.

Robyn Craine has two loves: her Harley and the Mystery Spot, the Black Hills tourist attraction she bought with funds from her late mother’s estate, an inheritance that included a generous gift from billionaire Harold Hopewell. With a chance-of-a-lifetime expansion in the works, Robyn doesn’t have time to babysit the handsome Sentinel Passtime actor who shows up to do “research”–especially when she figures out his connection to the wealthy businessman/politician trying to sabotage her new project. 

Liam Temple has no intention of falling for a Black Hills local. His agent has Liam’s breakout, big budget movie deal lined up. Even though Liam likes his current Sentinel Passtime gig, he promised his late sister he’d win a Golden Globe by thirty-five. The last thing he needs is the distraction of a feisty, Harley-riding tourist trap owner caught in Liam’s father’s crosshairs for buying a hunk of land Richard Marston thinks belongs to him. But when Robyn’s lookalike stunt double is attacked, Liam recognizes his father’s MO and Liam makes keeping Robyn safe his first priority.

FIRST KISS Excerpt © Loner Llama Press:

Her grin brought her face to life in a way that grabbed him by the heart. Her lips, reddened from the cold and from licking a dab of chocolate from the raisins, were totally kissable. Inviting. His mouth watered and his fingers tingled from wanting to touch her.

Uh-oh. Not cool. No kissing.

He got up and brushed off the seat of his pants with far more theater than needed. Feeling her puzzled gaze on him, he grabbed the first distraction he could find. “Sun’s out. Wow. That was fast.”

She pulled out her phone. “Do you want me to take a shot of you?”

“Let’s do a selfie.”

She made a face. “I’m really bad at those.”

“I’ve done a million. Give me your phone.”

He took his time positioning her to give them the best backdrop then sidled up close and put his free arm around her shoulders. He liked the way she fit against him. He liked the strong, firm muscles he felt tense beneath his arm. She wasn’t completely comfortable with this closeness, he could tell, but he liked it a lot. Too much.

He extended his right arm, camera ready to go. “Okay. Smile for the masses.”

He pictured her rolling her eyes at that so he snapped a couple of extra. When she started to move away, he tightened his grip. “Wait. One more for me, only.”

He turned his head, leaned down and kissed her obviously unsuspecting lips. The electric spark that connected the instant their lips touched nearly made him drop the phone, but somehow he remembered to click the exposure before she pushed him away.

“What was that for? Blackmail?”

“How can I blackmail you? It’s your phone.”

“Oh. Right.” Her cheeks flushed red and he fell a little deeper in love. Not real love, but the real in-this-moment sort. The kind he manufactured effortlessly for the big and small screen.

“But I’d really appreciate it if you’d send me a copy. Will you?”

She grabbed the phone and stuffed it in her pocket. “Maybe. I’m not comfortable kissing strangers.”

“We’re not strangers. We know each other’s life stories. I told you about my sister and I never talk about her in interviews.”

“Why?”

Because it hurts too much.

Because I blame myself for not doing more.

Because, deep down, I’m glad she’s gone.

~~~

BLACK HILLS LEGACY: The Inheritance is available at all vendors: books2read.com/u/m2XARk


 Legacy review Jenny F


The final book is here-

Billionaire Harold Hopewell traveled the world, encountering people and letting their stories touch him. In death, he is giving back, leaving an unusual will filled with life-altering bequests to the people he met along the way. Read the Inheritance Series, and let their stories touch you.

If you’re a KOBO reader, you’re in luck! For a short time only, you can grab a great deal: buy 2, get 1 FREE!

http://store.kobobooks.com/p/inheritanceCA

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http://store.kobobooks.com/p/inheritanceAU

http://store.kobobooks.com/p/inheritanceNZ

I hope you love this story as much as I do. And thank you, thank you, thank you, for remembering to leave a review!

Deb

FIRST KISS=TUESDAY (99¢ sale) BLACK HILLS BILLIONAIRE by Debra Salonen

Tuesday, March 14th, 2017

 BLACK HILLS BILLIONAIRE, Black Hills Rendezvous Book 2

Just 99¢ for a few more days

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Meet Shane and Jenna. Two lost souls who came soooo close to meeting, falling in love and living a fabulous life until something unthinkable happened, until a dark force ruined everything.

Now, they’ve been given a second chance–if Shane can get past the guilt he carries from a deathbed promise he made.

So, when is a first kiss not a kiss? When you’re in the Mystery Spot.

“As you can see, this was the bedroom. We’ve removed the furniture to avoid injury, but just imagine what a nightmare it must have been to sleep in a room that seems to be constantly shifting from side to side. We call this the dizzy room for a reason, so don’t be surprised if a stranger is suddenly holding on to you for balance.”

She took a deep breath and walked straight to the middle of the room. Almost instantly, her equilibrium went haywire. She stepped on what looked like a level surface and felt her foot drop a quarter of an inch. Just enough to throw her balance off. She staggered, which prompted Shane to dash into the room.

“Watch out,” she warned.

He weaved to the left like a drunk after a long night at a bar. “Holy crap,” he muttered. “What the he–?”

She grabbed his arm and pulled him closer to the wall. He looked slightly dazed. “Wow. What is it?”

“You’d have to ask my dad. Unfortunately, I think the secret went to the grave with him. All I know is it’s very effective. I’ve seen people bob and weave all the way back to their car. I’ve done this tour so often I barely feel it unless I’m in the middle of the room.”

He put a hand to his forehead. “I’ve got the spinners. Like those nights in college when you drank too much then lay down in bed and the ceiling was going around in circles.”

College.

He looked at her so intently she realized she must have said the word aloud.

“Sorry. Wrong thing to say.”

She shook her head. “It was a long time ago. Shall we finish the tour? There’s an exit through the back, but since I have to lock up, I think we should go out the way we came in.”

His usual serious look was back on his face. He nodded and pushed off from the wall to lead the way. He only made it a few steps before listing sideways, like the Titanic after meeting the iceberg. She tried to keep him upright, but his momentum was too great. They both staggered a few steps then crashed into the wall. The wall with the drawing of a four-poster with a patchwork quilt on it, and they landed smack dab in the middle of the one-dimensional mattress.

“This was your plan all along, right?” Shane asked, wrapping his arms around her to keep steady. “To get me in bed?”

She laughed to keep her panic at bay, but to her surprise she didn’t feel the usual fear that came when someone got too close, too fast. In fact, she liked the feeling of being in his arms. Warm. Secure. Protected.

“I’ve seen the same thing happen to other people. Perfect strangers. Dad used to say it was all about a person’s polarity-–positive and negative.”

His eyes were such a deep, yummy brown. Like chocolate syrup. “Does that mean one of us is a magnet and the other iron filings?”

She knew which she’d be. “Maybe we’re both iron filings being drawn to the giant magnet in the wall.”

He arched his neck to look over his shoulder, his skepticism clearly back in place. Laughing, she put her hands flat against his chest and pushed back. She waited for her balance to return, the way it usually did, but if anything, she was even loopier. Her hands wouldn’t leave his shirt. Her breath was shallow and shaky. Because she knew he was going to kiss her.

Kiss. His mouth touching her mouth. No. She didn’t kiss. Or touch. Or… But no words of protest made it out before his lips touched hers.

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What’s better than a 99¢ book?

Two books for 99¢!

Baby Billionaire sale

Grab them from your favorite retailer:

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Happy reading,

Deb

FIRST KISS=TUESDAY from BLACK HILLS STRANGER by Debra Salonen #NEWRELEASE

Tuesday, January 24th, 2017

 BLACK HILLS STRANGER, Black Hills Rendezvous, Book 9

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His last resort.

Jonas Galloway’s daughter is missing. He returned from active duty in Afghanistan to find his ex-wife had joined a cult and taken their seven-year-old with her. The group disappeared off the grid and Jonas has exhausted all leads. His only hope is to convince his old high school flame, Remy Bouchard, to use her “gift” to find Birdie. Remy may doubt her abilities, but Jonas never has. After all, she found him once and saved his life. He’s praying she can do the same for Birdie.

Her so-called gift.

Remy’s only back in Louisiana to close up her old family home and say goodbye to the past. She plans to reinvent herself in the Black Hills of South Dakota, and nothing Jonas, the ex-love-of-her-life, says is going to change that. Until he shows her a photo of his daughter. A little girl who looks like the child in her dream. A desperate soul on the verge of giving up. But if what Remy’s late mother said is true, then Remy could be the biggest mistake of Jonas’s life.

FIRST KISS Excerpt © Loner Llama Press:

“Take me with you.”

“No. If the cops decide to treat this as a kidnapping, they won’t even want me involved in the investigation. Trust me, police and civilian investigators don’t mix.”

She crossed her arms and shrugged. “Maybe I’ll wander downtown and let some handsome tourist buy me a hurricane.” She named the highest-octane alcoholic abomination she could think of. She’d tried one once and got disgustingly sick. She drummed her fingers on one cheek, theatrically. “Yes, it’s true that an excess of alcohol can interfere with the brain’s usual nighttime activities such as dreaming, but…” She let the implication hang.

“We’re arguing about going to a place you may or may not dream about.” He let out a snarky hoot. “Is it just me? Or does that strike you as nuts?”

“Are suggesting I’m crazy?”

“Absolutely not. I know crazy. But you are slightly cracked.”

She couldn’t say for certain whose scowl gave way to a smile first, but a second later they were both laughing. And a second after that, kissing.

She wanted to blame the Kraken—or the intensity of the situation—but she wasn’t a liar. She’d been thinking about kissing him from the moment he showed up on her doorstep.

He broke it off, first. “Damn. I promised myself I wasn’t going to do that.”

“Me, too,” she said, touching her fingers to her lips. She’d kissed a dozen boys and men over the years but not a single one had left the sort of impression on her mouth as Jonas Galloway.

He sighed weightily. “Jessie was right. The lust between us is like our invisible pet elephant–it takes up all this space and we waste a mountain of energy trying to ignore it.”

“Well said. I couldn’t agree more. The damn thing went on every date I ever had, too, after we broke up. Voyeuristic beast,” she muttered under her breath. “You think three in one bed is crowded, you should try it with an invisible elephant.”

Oops. TMI. Too much information.

~~~

BLACK HILLS STRANGER is available at these vendors:

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DebraSalonen Stranger meme2


Happy reading! I hope you love this story as much as I do. And thank you, thank you, thank you, for remembering to leave a review!

Deb

FIRST KISS=TUESDAY from BLACK HILLS RANCHER 99¢ by Debra Salonen

Tuesday, January 17th, 2017

 BLACK HILLS RANCHER, Black Hills Rendezvous, Book 8

Black-Hills-Rancher-Kobo

The last thing Cade Garrity expected when he went to Sentinel Pass to meet Jessie Bouchard—a prospective, short-term tenant willing to trade a little childcare in return for a discounted rent—was to save her life. But the video her twin sister, Remy, shot doesn’t lie. And the fact that the nutcase who booby-trapped Jessie’s stunt is still on the loose makes it impossible for Cade to turn his back on her. But Cade married a woman who put satisfying her need for excitement ahead of her family–ahead of him–and it killed her. He’s not going down that road again no matter how much he desires Jessie Bouchard.

Despite what people think, Jessie does not have a death wish. She learned at a young age the only way to handle pain and fear was to face it head on. That’s what she does. And she’s convinced herself that living for the moment is enough–until she meets Cade and his daughter, Shiloh. There may be more to life than that next death-defying stunt, but does she deserve the kind of life Cade has to offer? She isn’t sure, and unless she finds the person who is trying to kill her, she won’t get a chance to answer that question.


FIRST KISS Excerpt © Loner Llama Press:

 

She stopped moving away from him. “I’m not easy.” She blanched and added quickly, “I don’t mean sexually. I mean, in general. But you have a daughter and I…I have my career.”

“So, we keep those things separate.”

He reached out to touch the side of her face. “Neither of those excuses is good enough to keep me from kissing you. Got any better ones?”

He looked into her eyes and waited, watching for his answer. Her lips parted…and smiled. “Not really.”

“Good.” Then he leaned over to press his lips to hers. Soft and warm. Nice. Very nice. But salty.

As if reading his mind, she pulled back and licked her lips. “You taste like sea water.”

Which, apparently, wasn’t a bad thing because she moved closer and kissed him again, lips parted this time, welcoming his tongue to explore and parry. The deeper he explored, the sweeter she tasted. Root beer and ice cream sweet. Jessie Bouchard sweet.

He broke it off because his body started telling him it was more than happy to take things to the next level. Whoa. Not so fast, he silently cautioned. One step at a time. He didn’t know for certain he could pull off a casual, summer fling, no strings attached. But he sure as heck wanted to consider the option.

“Nice,” he said taking a step back.

“It was.” She sounded surprised. “You’re a good kisser. And here you gave me the impression you were out of practice.”

He could tell she was teasing, but he definitely didn’t want to talk about his dating disasters of late. He hadn’t gone out with anyone since arriving in South Dakota. In part, because he’d come to the conclusion that single fathers of a certain age should never let their friends or family set them up on blind dates.

“I haven’t roped for ten years, but that doesn’t mean I’ve forgotten how.”

~~~

DebSalonen RANCHER 99 - 2

Black Hills Rancher is available here for 99¢ for one week only:

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Happy reading! And thank you, thank you, thank you, for remembering to leave a review!

Deb

FIRST KISS=TUESDAY from BLACK HILLS OUTCAST 99¢ SALE by Debra Salonen

Tuesday, November 29th, 2016

99¢ One week ONLY!

 BLACK HILLS OUTCAST, Black Hills Rendezvous, Book 6

outcast-99-cent-1-wk-only

 Excerpt © Loner Llama Press:

“Are you an actor?”

He made a scoffing sound. “Good grief, no. I stay as far away from the Sentinel Passtime people as possible. I’m sure they’re nice enough, but their energy is enervating.”

Books. Art. Silk. Vocabulary words. She searched his face but nothing came to her. His beard was starting to fluff out again as it dried. His hair had filled in around his face covering his ears. He was starting to look more like the Rufus she knew.

“Listen, Rachel, I’m sorry about the peep show. I didn’t expect you for a couple of hours. I needed to think, and I do my best thinking in a bath. The house design didn’t lend itself to an indoor tub and I don’t like the cold well enough to sit in one outside in the winter, so I had the copper tub made. I call it my Saturday night special,” he said, a sort of self-deprecating humor in his tone.

She knew he bathed more often than once a week. “Today’s Tuesday.”

“I know. Like I said, I needed to think.”

Now, the humor was gone and something faintly foreboding seemed to linger in the air. “You’re pulling the plug on your Web site, aren’t you?”

“Not the sales part, but everything else,” he admitted.

She’d sensed his growing disenchantment with the whole online-community concept, but she’d ignored his concerns in favor of what she thought best for him. Shades of Mom, Jack would have said.

“Then, I guess we’re done here,” she said, trying to salvage a scrap of pride. She started toward where he was standing, intending to leave. He didn’t need her. No one did. Not really.

“Rachel,” he said, his voice low and conflicted. He stepped to the left to block her way. His large, warm hand closed around her forearm when she tried to push him aside. “You’re wrong about that.”

Then he pulled her to him, his arms enclosing her in a cocoon of warmth that made her think she might be in the middle of one of his Dreamhouses. Safe and secure.

His kiss was not at all what she was expecting. Soft, gentle and far too proper—at first. When she tilted her head and leaned into him, his reaction matched hers. Their tongues got involved. Their breathing changed. Her hands were touching—or were they gripping?—his massive shoulders.

She’d wanted to do that since day one. As wrong as it was, she’d never experienced anything that felt so right—even the odd, cushiony texture of his beard. She wanted more. Everything. Every inch of that gorgeous body she’d seen in the water.

At what price, Rachel? Her mother’s voice. You mixed business and pleasure once before and look how well that turned out.

black-hills-outcast-1

Black Hills Outcast available here:

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Happy reading! And thank you, thank you, thank you, for remembering to leave a review!

Deb

FIRST KISS=TUESDAY from BLACK HILLS RANCHER by Debra Salonen

Tuesday, August 16th, 2016

 BLACK HILLS RANCHER, Black Hills Rendezvous, Book 8

Black-Hills-Rancher-Kobo

The last thing Cade Garrity expected when he went to Sentinel Pass to meet Jessie Bouchard—a prospective, short-term tenant willing to trade a little childcare in return for a discounted rent—was to save her life. But the video her twin sister, Remy, shot doesn’t lie. And the fact that the nutcase who booby-trapped Jessie’s stunt is still on the loose makes it impossible for Cade to turn his back on her. But Cade married a woman who put satisfying her need for excitement ahead of her family–ahead of him–and it killed her. He’s not going down that road again no matter how much he desires Jessie Bouchard.

Despite what people think, Jessie does not have a death wish. She learned at a young age the only way to handle pain and fear was to face it head on. That’s what she does. And she’s convinced herself that living for the moment is enough–until she meets Cade and his daughter, Shiloh. There may be more to life than that next death-defying stunt, but does she deserve the kind of life Cade has to offer? She isn’t sure, and unless she finds the person who is trying to kill her, she won’t get a chance to answer that question.


FIRST KISS Excerpt © Loner Llama Press:

 

She stopped moving away from him. “I’m not easy.” She blanched and added quickly, “I don’t mean sexually. I mean, in general. But you have a daughter and I…I have my career.”

“So, we keep those things separate.”

He reached out to touch the side of her face. “Neither of those excuses is good enough to keep me from kissing you. Got any better ones?”

He looked into her eyes and waited, watching for his answer. Her lips parted…and smiled. “Not really.”

“Good.” Then he leaned over to press his lips to hers. Soft and warm. Nice. Very nice. But salty.

As if reading his mind, she pulled back and licked her lips. “You taste like sea water.”

Which, apparently, wasn’t a bad thing because she moved closer and kissed him again, lips parted this time, welcoming his tongue to explore and parry. The deeper he explored, the sweeter she tasted. Root beer and ice cream sweet. Jessie Bouchard sweet.

He broke it off because his body started telling him it was more than happy to take things to the next level. Whoa. Not so fast, he silently cautioned. One step at a time. He didn’t know for certain he could pull off a casual, summer fling, no strings attached. But he sure as heck wanted to consider the option.

“Nice,” he said taking a step back.

“It was.” She sounded surprised. “You’re a good kisser. And here you gave me the impression you were out of practice.”

He could tell she was teasing, but he definitely didn’t want to talk about his dating disasters of late. He hadn’t gone out with anyone since arriving in South Dakota. In part, because he’d come to the conclusion that single fathers of a certain age should never let their friends or family set them up on blind dates.

“I haven’t roped for ten years, but that doesn’t mean I’ve forgotten how.”

~~~

Black Hills Rancher is available here:

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 Tomorrow I have a wonderful promo with Robin Reads for BLACK HILLS BABY. If you’re a recipient of that excellent newsletter and have the chance to share the news, I’d be so grateful.

Robin's Read promo

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Happy reading! And thank you, thank you, thank you, for remembering to leave a review!

Deb

FIRST KISS=TUESDAY from THE LAWS OF LOVE by Debra Salonen

Tuesday, July 5th, 2016

Deb_Laws of Love

 Excerpt © Loner Llama Press:

She stood up, leaving her meal mostly uneaten, her drink untouched. Arley had invited Molly and T.J. to join them, but Molly had called to say she had a touch of the flu and needed T.J. to help. That left Gwyneth and Arley, as unlikely a pair of crusaders as you could ask for, to carry on the fight. Gwyn had done her best. She’d bought Molly some time, and now she was fought out. “I’m sorry. I have to go.”

“What? Wait. No. We’re celebrating.”

She was too frazzled, too emotionally depleted, to explain. She turned and walked out of Hooligan’s, the well-known and popular pub she’d always planned to visit. Her car was two blocks away. The evening air was cool and damp in that unique way that reminded her how much she loved this city.

Arley followed after her. “Gwyneth, what’s going on? Something’s wrong. I’ve felt it ever since you arrived at the hearing. Are you okay?”

She ignored his questions. Even one mention of the turmoil in her head would open a floodgate she might never be able to close. “It’s personal.”

His hand landed on her shoulder. “Screw personal.”

Anger–her emotional safety net–made her pivot to face him. “No. Screw you. My life is my own. It doesn’t involve you. You’re a client. I’m your legal advisor and representative in court. We’re not friends or buddies or pals. Now, excuse me, but I have to be somewhere.”

Screw you? Arley’s arms dropped to his side in complete and utter shock. Had anyone ever said that to him before? He doubted it. There might have been a time in his life when he would have been angered or upset by her dismissal, but this was Gwyneth–a cool, composed professional. For her to lose her temper so completely she’d risk alienating him–and the money he brought to her company–meant something bad–something very bad–was going on.

“We might not be friends, but there’s a good chance we’re soul mates,” he said, blocking her escape.

Her eyes widened with obvious incredulousness. “The office gossip was right. You are nuts.”

“I prefer eccentric.”

“Tough. I’m out of here.”

“Sorry. I can’t let you go. Not until I’m confident that you’re okay to drive.”

“I didn’t even touch my Cosmopolitan.”

“I noticed, but you’re upset. You can pretend that you’re upset with me, but we both know–”

She sliced the air between them with her free hand. “What part of ‘It’s personal’ don’t you get?”

He closed the gap between them in one step and put his arms around her.

“This part.”

He’d meant to hug her, only. Offer a little human compassion. But the moment his lips brushed hers, he knew a hug would never be enough between them.

He expected her to struggle, to push him away. She didn’t. She didn’t react in any way for a second or two then she gave a small cry and leaned into him. An instant later, he heard her briefcase hit the pavement and her arms returned his embrace.

Her scent, the taste of her lipstick, the wet heat of her mouth pushed him outside his comfort zone. He hadn’t grown up in a family that expressed their emotions casually or in public. But this wasn’t about a friendly touch–the need coursing through his brain quickly turned to pure desire. And more.

He was afraid to stop kissing her on the chance the chilly persona she showed to the world would return. As long as they were locked in each other’s arms they could avoid that nasty thing called reality.

Click.

He knew that sound.

He jerked back, and spun around, roughly shoving Gwyneth behind him.

Click. Click. Click. Even digital cameras make a sound that a private person like Arley dreaded.

“Evening, Mr. McNamara. Ms. Jacobi. Congrats on the win today. Give my best to the pig.”

 ~~~

A pig? Yes, there’s pot-belly pig named Cuddles. (Keep your shoes well away from your e-reader.) If you’d like to read the rest of this sweet novella for free, you’re in luck because it’s part of a 40+-author giveaway and contest:

Click on image to enter.

Click on image to enter.

This book is only available to Debra Salonen newsletter subscribers. If you’re already signed up and BookFunnel/Mailchimp won’t play ball, please leave a comment so I can send you the direct link.

Happy reading! And good luck in the contest!

Deb

FIRST KISS=TUESDAY from COP ON HER DOORSTEP by Karen Docter

Tuesday, June 21st, 2016

Cop Doorstep

Please welcome my guest today Karen Docter.  This wonderfully supportive author has some great stories to offer. I hope you’ll check out her website (link below) after you’ve read this dynamite 1ST KISS from COP ON HER DOORSTEP.

In the six years since her husband was killed by S.W.A.T., Carrie Padilla has spent long hours at work, rebuilding a life for herself and her son. The little time she has at home is spent keeping her eight-year-old son out of trouble, but he is all too eager to try to be the man in the house. When a handsome cop shows up on her doorstep, her errant son in tow, Carrie’s heart stutters. The sexy Italian cop sets off all kinds of bells in her system, and she knows there’s only one thing she can do to save what is left of her family, her husband’s memory, and her heart…avoid her new neighbor at all costs.


Jake and Carrie return from their first date…

“We’re home,” he said, pulling into his driveway.

Dragged from her reverie, she watched him walk around to assist her out of the car. With his large hand cupped around her elbow, he strode across the street. She had to take two steps to his one and, in no time, they came to a stop outside her front door.

Jeez. What was the rush? All of a sudden, Jake had become a stranger. Under the glowing porch light, his eyes looked calm enough—unreadable, in fact—but somehow, she sensed an edginess in his stiff stance.

“Do you have your keys?”

She handed them over and, within seconds, the front door was open and Jake was again standing two feet away.

His hasty retreat had the oddest effect on her. While she should be happy he didn’t seem to expect the requisite goodnight kiss of a real date, she only felt rejected. It was unnerving to know the woman inside her was still willing to court emotional chances.

Remember what happened the last time you jumped off that particular cliff.

The mental reminder was unwelcome, but it moved her to action. “Good night, Jake.” She leaned up to brush a kiss against his jaw.

It was a mistake, of course. The stream of electricity that arced from his skin to her lips caught her completely unprepared. It jolted sluggish nerve endings to life and randomly short-circuited what remained of her brain cells. Her legs unsteady, she searched his face.

It was surprisingly blank. Except for his eyes. They were no longer calm. Far from it. They were now dark and turbulent and fixed on her with hot intensity.

Only a fool played with fire, but she couldn’t help but wonder what would happen if she walked into the flames. Would they warm her or burn her to a crisp? The only way to know was to kiss him again.

Did she dare? How could she not? This was their one and only date, wasn’t it? She’d never get another chance.

“Good night, Carr—“

Her lips cut off Jake’s words and, for an instant, the heavenly feel of his mouth melding with hers was enough to quench her curiosity. His heat thawed her insides, filled the cold, empty spaces in her heart. It raced to keep up with the electrical impulses zipping through her body.

When she realized their lips were their sole point of contact even though she stood on her tiptoes to reach his mouth, she swayed into his body. “Jake?”

Carrie’s husky plea against his mouth, her taste, the feel of her yielding curves burrowing into his hard length…Jake couldn’t hold out against the relentless assault on his fractured senses. He’d wanted her to take the next step. She had and, damn his clamoring libido, he craved more.

Lowering his head, he took what he needed. His arms surrounded her, lifting her into his body until they meshed from chest to thigh. Her lips parted on a gasp of surprise, of acceptance. She wriggled against him. He groaned his approval.

His tongue thrust past the edges of her teeth, probing deeply. Without preliminary, without hesitation. He plundered her sweetness as he blindly pushed into the house, carrying her with him. He didn’t stop moving until they bumped into one of the entry walls.

Caught between two equally unyielding surfaces, Carrie moaned and dropped her purse to the floor. He kicked it aside and tossed the ring of keys that bit into his left hand after it. Reluctant to drag himself away from her drugging kisses, he sucked air into his starved lungs. “I didn’t mean, we shouldn’t, ah, hell.”

Recapturing her lips, he eased back so she could slide down his body. His hands gentled, trailed caresses along her spine beneath her jacket until they came to rest on her backside. With a low, tortured sound, he ground his erection intimately into her softness to alert her to his tenuous hold. “Carrie, honey,” he groaned at last, “tell me to stop.”

“Mmm.” Carrie responded to the rumble of his deep voice with an instinctive, feminine moan. Stop this? It had been too long since a man held her, made her feel so alive. So desirable and, oh, so desperately needy. Never had she encountered such a burning need to get near someone.

To alleviate the problem, she dragged her hands from his thick hair and worked her way down until she discovered a gap in his jacket. She dove inside where taut muscles rippled against her palms. The soft feel of only one thin layer of cotton between her fingertips and his naked skin set off tremors deep in her belly. Moving forward, she touched—

Something cold.

Something hard.

As if stung, she jerked both hands out of Jake’s jacket away from the holster tucked high against his body. “You’re wearing a gun?”

He trailed kisses along her jaw. “I always wear one,” he said, the words distant, unfocused, against her ear.

She tilted her head to grant him better access to the tender skin beneath her earlobe. Then harsh memories reverberated through her head like a sledgehammer, knocking down the walls of desire she’d been building like an ingenuous child with a new set of blocks.

What are you doing? Jake’s a cop. He wears a gun. Even on a date. The man’s a walking, talking risk, and your risk-taking days are long gone. She gulped for air to smother the panic.

“Carrie?”

Her brain barely functioned, but she knew she had to escape the question forming in his too sexy, hot chocolate eyes. She pushed him back several steps so he once again stood on her doorstep. “Good-bye, Jake,” she choked out before closing the door in his face.

Refusing to listen when he called her name, she locked the deadbolt with nerveless fingers and backed up until she knew she was far enough away to resist the temptation to reopen the door. To her house. Or to her heart.

 

Amazon: http://goo.gl/bUHNMu
B&N: http://goo.gl/6uoZTd
Kobo: https://goo.gl/fd92aB
All Romance Books: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-coponherdoorstep-2014481-149.html
Goodreads: https://goo.gl/FkaNvZ
Website: www.karendocter.com
~~~~

ZOOM! How exciting is that?! Sounds like the perfect summer read to me!

Stay cool, my friends.

Deb

 

FIRST KISS=TUESDAY from BLACK HILLS WHITE KNIGHT by Debra Salonen

Tuesday, June 14th, 2016

 BLACK HILLS WHITE KNIGHT, Black Hills Rendezvous, Book 6

Deb_Black Hills White Knight300dpi1500x2400

 Excerpt © Loner Llama Press:

“I’m glad you came here tonight, Daria. I like you. I enjoyed talking with you. You’re probably the most honest, self-attuned, real person I know.”

“What about Libby?”

“She’s spoken for.”

And I’m not, she thought with a bright, glittery burst of joy. I’m free. Available. Sort of.

She looked at his lips. His perfect, masculine, desirable lips. “You know the baggage we brought with us on your plane is only part of the package, right?”

William put his arms around her and carefully eased her closer, as if expecting her to bolt. Which she should have. Would have, if she’d been listening to the sensible advice she’d read in a dozen or so women’s magazines over the past few months. But those writers’ voices were drowned out by the girlish thrill of sharing a first kiss with the handsomest man she’d ever known.

And why the heck shouldn’t I? He’s flying away in the morning. I’ll probably never see him again. If not now, when?

The last justification—a popular slogan adopted by several politicians she knew—made her smile. William seemed to take that as yes. With one hand he lifted her chin as he slowly lowered his head.

His lips were soft and warm, gentle but persistent, coaxing her to respond. Hormones, pheromones, whatevermones flooded her desert-dry senses. She not only kissed him back, she leaned into him, pressing close enough to feel every button on his shirt, the well-formed shape of his chest, and the ribs, sinew and muscle under his skin.

She opened her mouth and touched her tongue to his. Doing so felt bold, impulsive and gratifying beyond words. He tasted like the honey he’d added to his tea. He tasted new and novel and very, very good.

His tongue made tentative inquiries at first but quickly left politeness behind and explored her mouth as only a stranger would. A stranger. That’s what he was.

She jerked back with a gasp. “Oh! That was so not supposed to happen.” She swallowed hard, still tasting his sweetness. “In fact, it didn’t happen. It was a dream. Dreams aren’t real.”

He placed both hands on her shoulders, more to steady her than hold her in place. “I’ve been working in Hollywood for half my adult life, and believe me, I know the difference between make-believe and reality. That kiss was real.”

She turned sideways to dislodge his hands. “I’ve never even been to Hollywood.”

He seemed amused by her non sequitur. “I also have a fair knowledge of timing, and this was not well-scripted. For that I apologize. Not for the kiss, mind you. That was quite lovely, and I shall treasure it always.”

She couldn’t decide if he was being gallant or joking around. That was the problem with kissing a stranger, she decided, as he escorted her to her grandfather’s old sedan—you have no barometer to go by.

“Sleep well, Daria,” he said, dropping a friendly peck near the corner of her lips. “I’ll run the tape back to you in the morning unless you need me before then. You have my number.”

He remained standing in the driveway the entire time she backed up and slowly maneuvered her way between the snow banks. He was still there when she turned onto the street and stepped on the gas. The guy didn’t have a jacket on. That made him either crazy or inured to the cold weather.

Her bet was on the former. After all, he’d kissed her, hadn’t he? A not-quite-divorced divorcée with two kids, no alimony, no job, no nothing.

The man was interesting. Intriguing. Sexy as hell, and a great kisser. But he was right about their timing. It sucked big time, as Miranda would have said. And that’s all there was to it.

~~~

Black Hills White Knight is available here:

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 And, in case you missed it, BLACK HILLS BABY is #FREE.

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Happy reading! And thank you, thank you, thank you, for remembering to leave a review!

Deb

FIRST KISS=TUESDAY from BLACK HILLS OUTCAST by Debra Salonen

Tuesday, May 17th, 2016

 BLACK HILLS OUTCAST, Black Hills Rendezvous, Book 5

Black-Hills-Outcast-Kindle

 Excerpt © Loner Llama Press:

Rachel stood in the doorway of the kitchen and sipped her glass of water as she watched Rufus charm his miniature audience. He’d removed his tie an hour or so earlier and opened his pristine white shirt collar a few buttons. She didn’t understand why she found that glimpse of flesh so provocative, but she did. So much so, in fact, she’d made up an excuse about needing a drink of water simply to give herself some breathing space.

“Your date seems to like children,” a voice observed. Rachel started. Her mom-radar must have malfunctioned.

“They seem to like him, too,” Rachel returned cautiously, wondering where this conversation would lead. Nowhere good, she was sure.

“I wonder why that is,” Mom said. “Perhaps because he’s a bit…simple?”

Rachel put the glass to her mouth and forced herself to drink. It was that or scream. And she couldn’t scream because her father never would have allowed it. The man worshipped his wife and let her get away with all sorts of small cruelties.

“You’re basing your judgment on what? A two-second conversation?”

“I asked around. People who drop out of society, as he did, usually do so for a reason, Rachel. Do you know what that reason is?”

No. “He’s my client, Mom. I’m on a need-to-know basis, and his personal life is something I don’t need to know—as long as he pays my bill. I invited him tonight because I thought his business would benefit from the local exposure.”

Rachel was pleased by how logical and composed she sounded. For a minute, she thought her mother bought it.

Mom shook her perfectly coifed head. “Don’t kid yourself, Rachel. You’re attracted to him. And, with good reason. He’s quite handsome. But I thought you told me you’d learned your lesson where handsome men were concerned? I believe your exact words included hook nose and bald.”

Rachel set her glass on an antique sideboard then crossed her arms. “I may have said something to that effect, but, Mother, surely you’re not labeling all handsome men as cheating scoundrels who can’t keep their dicks in their pants. I could point out half a dozen hunks in this room—including your son—and each one is a faithful, trustworthy and decent human being who loves his wife and knows how to honor his marriage vows.”

“There’s no reason to be crude, Rachel. All I’m saying is you need to look beyond the superficial. You have a tendency to jump in to everything with both feet. In a relationship, by the time you discover how shallow the man is, something’s broken.”

Rachel gave her mother credit for creating an apropos metaphor. She’d been fighting an attraction toward this man since that first day. But what did she know about him? She hadn’t known he was drop-dead gorgeous. Or good with kids. Or even that he owned a suit.

“There you are,” a deep voice said, taking both women by surprise. Rufus leaned in and brushed a quick, micro-kiss on Rachel’s lips. “Sorry. Those kids are great. Jordie reminds me of my little brother when he was that age.”

Rachel had to fight to keep from touching the spot he’d kissed. “N…no problem,” she stuttered. “Mom and I were catching up. She’s just returned from Florida.”

“Florida…,” he said, reaching up to touch his ear. “I used to own a condo in Miami.”

His obviously unconscious gesture made her realize something was different between his right ear and his left. She didn’t have time to dwell on the fact because she could tell by her mother’s skeptical snort that Mom didn’t believe him.

Escape, her brain cried. They needed to leave now before Mom said something really humiliating. “Rufus, if you want, we could take off.”

He smiled at her warmly, then lifted her hand to his lips and kissed her knuckles. She was almost certain her knees weren’t going to hold her, but then he turned to Mom and said, “Not yet. I haven’t had a chance to talk to your mother. I spotted a quiet nook near the stairs…”

There was a hint of “I dare you” in his tone, and Rachel had never known her mother to walk away from a challenge.

Mom passed Rachel her highball glass—Jack Daniels neat. “Very well.”

As polite as any gentleman she’d ever met, Rufus escorted her mother out of sight. Rachel took a sip of the booze in her mother’s glass, despite the fact she hated whiskey.

“What’s going on?”

Coughing slightly, she glanced to her left to find her brother and future sister-in-law peering out of the kitchen. “I don’t know. Mom and Rufus are talking. I’m pretty sure neither is armed, but you might want to put your finger on 9-1-1 speed dial just in case.”

~~~

Black Hills Outcast available here:

Amazon      BN      KOBO     iBooks

 


 And, in case you missed it, BLACK HILLS BABY is #FREE.

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                Amazon         iBooks             BN           KOBO

Happy reading! And thank you, thank you, thank you, for remembering to leave a review!

Deb