RELEASE: All That Jazz by Katherine L. Evans

Title: All That Jazz
Series: A Quarantine Love Story #1
Author: Katherine L. Evans
Genre: Contemporary/Erotic Romance
Release Date: July 26, 2021

One sexy jazz musician. One ordinary woman. One worldwide lockdown. And all that jazz…
Awkward, mundane, and dare I even say, “vanilla?”
That’s me. That’s my life.
A past riddled with disappointment.
A future that doesn’t look brighter.
The only thing that keeps me going, keeps me happy when everything sucks, is sexy jazz musician, Lucky De Luca, with his Great Gatsby-style music and videos.
But when I’m the “lucky” winner chosen to spend one week at his mansion in New Orleans with him and his band, everything changes.
It’s finally my turn for excitement, to break free and enjoy life for once.
Until a pandemic hits…
Locked down with the man of my dreams, I’m now trapped in a world of debauchery and forbidden pleasure.
The drinks are cold.
The music’s hot.
The sexual energy is infectious.
Will I lose myself in my wildest fantasies?
Or will it become a nightmare like no other?
HOSTED BY:

COVER: Hellbent Hero by Naomi Porter

Title: Hellbent Hero
Series: Knight’s Legion MC #3
Author: Naomi Porter
Genre: MC Romance
Release Date: August 6, 2021
Cover Design: @trcdesignsbycat
 
Tara. My Roja.
Together, we will rise from the ashes.
As Sergeant at Arms of the Knight’s Legion MC, I am the protector. I face death head-on, holding the memory of my loved ones close.
Until a striking pair of doe-eyes and crimson hair makes me rethink my death wish. Question whether I’m deserving of a second chance.
Roja has her secrets. I see through her smart mouth and attitude.
She’s like me. Broken and alone.
Guilt overrules my newfound hope after a soul-binding weekend together. I destroy the woman I can’t live without, sending her spiraling into darkness.
But I hold on with a death grip, refusing to lose another woman I love. Hellbent on claiming her. Roja is mine.
This series contains dark elements and possible triggers. Reader discretion advised.

Naomi Porter always had a knack for storytelling, and she’s finally putting pen to paper to share with you, the reader. Whether she is trying to stay warm in the freezing winter weather or cool in the sweltering heat, she’s pounding away at the keys of her laptop to bring you the latest gritty motorcycle club romance or decadent billionaire saga, or an outlandish, heart-stopping sexy drama.
 
No matter what story she’s telling, you can bet it has sexy as sin men, sassy and confident women, and plenty of sizzling passion. Enter Naomi’s naughty world today!
HOSTED BY:

PROMO: Of All Hearts by Lily Baines

Series: Of All Hearts
Author: Lily Baines
Genre: Sweet with Heat Contemporary Romance, Opposites Attract
 

 

Of All Places

Of All People
Of All Days – on sale for 99 cents
 

She’s read all about romance but never found love. Will her chance encounter with a handsome stranger lead to the love of her life?

Melanie Allen needs a change. Longing to escape her uneventful life, the introverted librarian jets off to picturesque Montenegro for a one-week tour. With little confidence in herself, she encounters a stunningly handsome man and acts impulsively for the very first time.

Theo Martinovic is gorgeous, self-confident, and a town local. Everything Melanie is not. Still unsure how she managed to capture his attention and sensing he’s holding back wounds of his own, Melanie knows she must defy her self-conscious ways if she doesn’t want to repeat the mistakes of her past and give true love a chance.

He doesn’t do romance or promises. She’s been burned by love before. Can mending a derelict hotel help mend two lonely hearts?


Romeo Dante Lorenzo, owner of cobalt blue eyes and a chiseled jawline, is one of New York’s most eligible bachelors. Too bad he’s not looking for love.

Used to a different type of women—beautiful and vain—Romeo doesn’t think much of Siena Borrelli upon first meeting her while attending to family business in Italy.

After divorcing her cheating husband, Siena started a new life in Rimini, Italy, a coastal town as unique and warm as its occupants, caring for an elderly woman who owns the old hotel she now calls home. When the woman’s great-nephew, Romeo, visits to sell the place, Siena won’t

let it go without a fight. His physique can be distracting, but she’s determined to not let it deceive her.

Can they both look beyond the surface?

Can the most embarrassing day of your life lead to the love of your life?
Corfu, Greece.
It’s not a vacation for HR expert, Olivia Duncan. It’s a business trip. One that she has diligently planned for, because Olivia likes to keep things organized and perfect. Not even her frizzy hair gets away with not doing as she wants.
But an embarrassing mishap at the company conference puts her in the path of Niko Teresi, a handsome taverna owner who knows a thing or two about how constricting corporate life can be.
Olivia doesn’t do change or spontaneity. She never deviates from her path.
Hiding from the world and waitressing in his taverna, can Niko show her there’s life in letting go?
 
 
 
 
HOSTED BY:

PREORDER/RELEASE: Loved by Liam by Melanie Moreland

Title: Loved by Liam
Series: Vested Interest: ABC Corp
Author: Melanie Moreland
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Family Saga
Release Date: July 29, 2021
Cover Design: Karen Hulseman, Feed Your Dreams Designs
Liam Callaghan is happy with the way things are.
 
He has a successful business, a family he loves, and a life he thinks is fulfilling and complete.
 
Until a favor for his brother brings him to her.
 
She sparks something inside him. Something he had no idea he was missing.
 
One touch and he knows Paige Winters is the woman he wants.
 
She and her daughter become his focus. His world.
 
He only has to convince her to believe in them.
 
Liam entered Paige’s life quietly, but from the moment he took her hand, her world exploded.
 
Larger-than-life, he stepped in, brightening her days and filling her with happiness.
 
But she has more than her own heart on the line.
 
Her daughter, Lucy, has to come first.
 
As much as her soul yearns for him, can she trust his words?
 
Can the seeds love plants take root and bloom, growing over the past?
 
If Liam has anything to do with it, they will.

“Oh Melanie Moreland, your words make my heart so full! Liam and Paige’s journey is nothing short of perfect.” its.gottabethebooks

“Loved by Liam is steamy, sexy, sweet, and sensational.” Read Me Romance

“Ms Moreland has given us a story that is riveting, it’s emotional, it’s witty but more importantly it’s written from the heart.” Thelma & Louise Book Blog

 
New York Times/USA Today bestselling author Melanie Moreland, lives a happy and content life in a quiet area of Ontario with her beloved husband of twenty-seven-plus years and their rescue cat, Amber. Nothing means more to her than her friends and family, and she cherishes every moment spent with them.
 
While seriously addicted to coffee, and highly challenged with all things computer-related and technical, she relishes baking, cooking, and trying new recipes for people to sample. She loves to throw dinner parties, and also enjoys traveling, here and abroad, but finds coming home is always the best part of any trip.
 
Melanie loves stories, especially paired with a good wine, and enjoys skydiving (free falling over a fleck of dust) extreme snowboarding (falling down stairs) and piloting her own helicopter (tripping over her own feet.) She’s learned happily ever afters, even bumpy ones, are all in how you tell the story.
 
Melanie is represented by Flavia Viotti at Bookcase Literary Agency. For any questions regarding subsidiary or translation rights please contact her at  flavia@bookcaseagency.com
 
HOSTED BY:

RELEASE: Always Trust a Stranger: Hot in the City by Zane Michaelson & Kaylee Rose

Title: Always Trust a Stranger: Hot in the City
Authors: Zane Michaelson & Kaylee Rose 
Genre: Steamy Romance
Release Date: July 24, 2021
For Roman, sexual gratification is the ultimate high; addictive and all-consuming. It must be attained, no matter the cost to himself or the Blackthorne family reputation.

Considered by many to be handsome, arrogant, and tough, within him sits a ruthless determination to succeed, no matter who he steps on to achieve his goals.

But at the forefront of his actions lies the need for praise, and what better way to stroke his out-of-control ego than to seduce the lonely, bored housewives of upper-crust society and occasionally their willing daughters, amongst others.

Not averse to broadening his horizons, Roman plays the field while refusing to use gender as a barrier to halt winning the ultimate prize; the hedonistic pursuit of pleasure and sensual self-indulgence.

Anais Richelieu: an attractive, intelligent, wealthy lady of a certain age, secures the services of Kensington Renovations in a bid to offload cash for tax purposes. Initially unimpressed, the tide soon turns, and she falls for the charms of the enigmatic Roman, but success isn’t to be measured by first impressions, but ten solid inches of fulfilment.

Designed to melt your Kindle, this is the first in a planned series of hot and steamy, erotic short stories by best-selling authors, Zane Michaelson, and Kaylee Rose…enjoy the ride because it’s gonna get wild!
“Hot, sexy, and intriguing!”- Goodreads Reviewer

“Well crafted, and as promised, this will melt your Kindles, but will also draw those that love a bad boy out of hiding.” -Goodreads Reviewer

“I am loving this sexy, steamy, hot to the touch brand new series!”- Goodreads Reviewer

“OOOH this book promised us Hot, Steamy and Erotic and it well and truly delivers!!!” -Goodreads Reviewer

“This is going to be an amazing series!” -Goodreads Reviewer

 
My name is Zane Michaelson and I am a best-selling, multi-genre author with over fifty titles released.

I was born and raised in the North West of England but moved away to study Law at University, before returning and meeting the woman of my dreams.

Now I live in Spain with my beautiful wife, four wonderful children, who are the lights of my life, and a host of animals.

It has been four years since my debut release, and I still have so much to say.

With more books planned, including further co-writes with my wife Jenna Michaelson and fellow author, Kaylee Rose, I’m excited for what the future brings.

Kaylee Rose is a mother, sports fan, and contemporary romance author looking to stretch her creative muscles and explore other genres as well.
Born and raised in California, Kaylee is the mother of four sons, and her furry baby, the border collie lab mix, Bella.
Inspired by her husband’s career in law enforcement, and her passion for the written word, Kaylee began to pen her novels as an escape from the rigors of everyday life. She admits teaching herself the craft of writing has been a tough, but wonderful journey, and is just the creative outlet that she needs. Writing time is her time, and she protects the hard-won moments fiercely.
Kaylee’s series The Weight of the Badge was written after she attended required law enforcement classes with her husband. The seminars focused on the stress a first responder faces daily, how it affects their lives both on and off the job, and the continually growing number of law enforcement suicides. With her books and her experience married to a law enforcement officer, Kaylee found herself armed with the perfect platform to use her voice and subtly spread the statistics others may not know. Kaylee Rose is passionate about sharing sexy stories with an important message mixed in.
As a mom of four boys, and with a competitive streak of her own, Kaylee spent over twenty years coaching youth sports. She loves playing softball, volleyball, and soccer to name a few. Currently obsessed with Kinder Joy chocolates and the little toys that come inside them, Kaylee refuses to share with anyone, even if they promise to do the dishes after she cooks.
Kaylee’s husband is her biggest supporter, believing in her even when she can not, and writing love stories comes naturally to her after falling in love with him at first sight. Her happy place is Disneyland with her family or going on a road trip or camping with her hubby.
 
HOSTED BY:

TOUR: Avenging Angel by Naomi Porter

Title: Avenging Angel 

Duet Title: Knight’s Legion MC Duet #2
Author: Naomi Porter
Genre: Steamy Romance, MC Romance 
Release Date: July 6, 2021 
 
The mayhem continues for the Knight’s Legion MC…
 
Storm. My protector.
I need his darkness, like he needs my light.
 
After surviving an abusive relationship, I swore off men.
Until the President of the Knight’s Legion MC crashes into my life, holding me captive with his haunted gray eyes.
 
Storm is a force to be reckoned with and I welcome the chaos— it makes me feel alive.
 
He owns me. Body and soul. I love the way he loves me. Fueled by a fierceness that keeps him on the edge, but I keep him from going over.
 
When the enemy threatens to tear us apart, I find out just how strong I really am.
 
Storm is my everything… I will do anything for him, regardless of the sacrifice.
 
NOT a standalone. Please read Savage Storm first. It is recommended you read the series in order.
**Contains dark elements. Reader discretion advised.**
 
 

RELEASING AUGUST 6, 2021

 


💥💥Bloggers & Bookstagrammers
💥💥
 Sign up for Hellbent Hero events today
 
 
Naomi Porter always had a knack for storytelling, and she’s finally putting pen to paper to share with you, the reader. Whether she is trying to stay warm in the freezing winter weather or cool in the sweltering heat, she’s pounding away at the keys of her laptop to bring you the latest gritty motorcycle club romance or decadent billionaire saga, or an outlandish, heart-stopping sexy drama.
 
No matter what story she’s telling, you can bet it has sexy as sin men, sassy and confident women, and plenty of sizzling passion. Enter Naomi’s naughty world today!
HOSTED BY:

RELEASE: Hurdle by Heather Dahlgren

Title: Hurdle

Series: Reaching for the Gold #2
Author: Heather Dahlgren
Genre: Sports/Contemporary Romance
Release Date: July 23, 2021
We’re all here to win, but that doesn’t mean we can’t have a little fun. I’m just as determined as everyone here to walk away a winner. I just believe you can achieve it even if you’re sleeping around and partying.

Layla Roberts does not believe that. She’s never seen off the track. Until tonight. Everyone talks about how they bet she doesn’t know how to even have fun.

I take that bet. I’ll show them all I’m capable of charming even the most reserved girl.

The problem is what started as a bet has turned into so much more. My fear now isn’t losing the gold – it’s hoping she never finds out how this all started.

It’s a race to the finish but what am I running toward – the gold or love?
 
 

Heather Dahlgren writes Contemporary Romance, sprinkling each book with a bit of humor, a lot of naughty and true love. She self-published her first book in 2014 and continues to do so today. Her overactive mind promises the stories are in no short supply.
Heather grew up and still resides at the Jersey shore. She loves being so close to the Atlantic Ocean and the Pine Barrens. She is surrounded by the best of both worlds.
She is married to her high school sweetheart and has three kids. There is nothing more important in the world to her than her family.
When Heather isn’t writing you can find her getting lost in a great book, spending time with family, and helping her fellow authors.
 
 
HOSTED BY:

RELEASE: Footsteps of the Past by Felice Stevens

Title: Footsteps of the Past
Series: Second Chances #2
Author: Felice Stevens
Genre: M/M Romance
Release Date: July 21, 2021
Cover Design: Reese Dante
It was like in the movies: their eyes met from across the room and they fell in love.
Nine years later, Chess and André are the envy of all their friends.
But this is real life….and things are never what they seem.
Still waters run deep—the better to hide Chess’s ugly past. He’s worked hard to bury the troubled teen he once was and is living a life he never imagined possible. André’s love is a gift that makes him believe in second chances, and Chess is grateful for it every day. The only thing he wants is what André finds impossible to give: his time. Six months apart might be the breaking point, even for Chess.
One horrible night changed André’s life forever. Formerly a party boy of the Hamptons social scene, André buries himself in work for years until he meets Chess and learns to enjoy the simple things. He’s tired of being away from home all the time and ready to step down from his role as CEO of the family business, no matter how they try and pull him back in. But old habits die hard…and so do memories.
Photos from the past and present surface, shocking Chess and André out of their carefully constructed dream life. They are forced to face the unthinkable: the love they thought would last a lifetime may be on the brink of falling apart. Secrets are exposed, opening a Pandora’s box both men hoped would stay locked forever. Now Chess and André face the hardest question: do you ever really know the person you’re living with?

“Felice has done it again…a masterful combination of raw emotions and love.” ~Audrey, Goodreads reviewer

“…their story is ultimately a beautiful testament to unconditional love. This one has my highest recommendation.”~ Randall, Goodreads reviewer

“This book does have angst, but oh was it worth it. Love that this story is about a couple who has been with each other for years…I absolutely adored this story – Chess and Andre have each other’s hearts and mine too!” ~ Nicole, Goodreads reviewer

Felice Stevens has always been a romantic at heart. She believes that while life is tough, there is always a happy ending just around the corner. Her characters have to work for it, however. Like life in NYC, nothing comes easy, and that includes love.
She lives in New York City and has way too much black in her wardrobe yet can’t stop buying “just one more pair” of black pants. Felice is a happily addicted Bravo and Say Yes to the Dress addict and proud of it. And let’s not get started on House Hunters. Her dream day starts out with iced coffee and ends with Prosecco, because…why shouldn’t it? You can find her procrastinating on FB in her reader group, Felice’s Breakfast Club.
You can find all my books, grouped by series in proper reading order on my website located here:
Follow me on social media to keep up with all my news of releases, sales and exclusive content!
Discover my character inspirations for all my books on my Pinterest Boards here:
HOSTED BY:

TOUR: You’re Still the One by Erika Kelly

Title: You’re Still the One

Series: A Calamity Falls Small Town Romance
Author: Erika Kelly
Genre: Steamy, Small Town, Contemporary Romance (stand alone)
Release Date: July 8, 2021 
 
 
 
 

✔️ Hot, inked, motorcycle-riding hero
✔️ Sexy wedding planner with a whole lot of explaining to do
✔️Steamy, small town romance
✔️Second chance romance
✔️And lots and lots of make-up sex

When Stella Cavanaugh gets the chance to come home after a seven-year, self-imposed exile, she takes it. She was born to be a wedding planner, and she hopes creating her sister’s wedding might just earn her redemption with her family.

The only thing holding her back is the fear of running into Griffin James, the love of her life. Because she not only hurt her family, she destroyed their relationship. Burned it right to the ground. And she just doesn’t know if she can bear to find out he’s moved on. She sure hasn’t.

Griffin James has a roommate. The fourteen-year-old’s staying with him while his dad’s on deployment. Sounds simple, but the boy’s grandparents are looking for any excuse to pull him out of the clutches of the big, tattooed owner of a bike shop. If Griffin can just stay under their radar, everything should be fine.

But that’s just not possible when Stella bursts into their lives. Her sparkly spirit, her big, splashy ideas, and her impulsiveness always lead to disaster. He knew that…but he couldn’t resist her.

And now she’s on the run again, because…

The very things they love about each other are also what tear them apart.
Award-winning author Erika Kelly writes sexy and emotional small town romance. Married to the love of her life and raising four children, she lives in the southwest, drinks a lot of tea, and is always waiting for her cats to get off her keyboard. Please note that 10% of the net income of all Erika Kelly books goes to the Semper Fi Fund (semperfifund.org)
HOSTED BY:

RELEASE: The Big Charmer by E.H. Lyon

Title: The Big Charmer
Series: Mr. Boss Series (stand alone)
Author: E.H. Lyon
Genre: Contemporary/Workplace/Nanny & Boss Romance
Release Date: July 20, 2021 
This boss’s charm is all it takes for the nanny to be in trouble…
Logan Jax probably shouldn’t have eyed the nanny like she was his next meal. But what guy living a bachelor’s life wouldn’t when Sadie looks like that? He doesn’t get points for asking Sadie to be his fake date, either. But he needed to close a billion-dollar deal. And he certainly doesn’t get bonus points for sleeping with the nanny. However, Sadie’s hand roamed, his hand roamed, and the stars aligned for orgasmic bliss.
His sister gave him one rule when his nephew was placed in his care. Don’t (literally) screw up the arrangement with the supernanny.
Despite Sadie trying to keep it professional, his charm wears her down and although Sadie struts around in his shirt, clearly enjoying his cocky antics—it’s a problem. She wants him, and he wants her. But Logan Jax doesn’t do relationships or family; he isn’t the settling-down type, and that’s exactly what she wants…
The Big Charmer is the second standalone story from the Mr. Boss series. This story is filled with banter, a swoony boss, and surprises along the way.

The Unexpected Card – Available NOW
The Big Charmer – Available NOW
The Perfect Distraction – PreOrder
The Real Deal – PreOrder
 
E.H. Lyon hates folding laundry and decided one day to avoid it by writing witty and a little steamy stories. Her stories take you on a light and bantering ride until the very end, when your couple finds their happily ever after. Along the way, there may be the occasional emotional twist thrown in and the essential appearance of a bottle of whiskey. E.H. has a thing for witty women, determined well-dressed men who fall in love, and the steamy scenes that bring them together.

An American from the Midwest, she now lives in Northern Europe with her small pack of humans. She believes the essence of balance is sitting on a yoga mat listening to music whilst eating a donut. And she absolutely loves finding a new book boyfriend to swoon-over, hearing from other authors, and connecting with people who read her books.

 
HOSTED BY:

RELEASE: Amore by HL Packer

Title: Amore
Series: The Fated Series
Author: H.L Packer
Genre: Fighter Romance (Mafia World)
Release Date: July 20, 2021
 
Tia
I’m drowning.
Barely keeping my head above water.
The weight of expectation is dragging me down as I attempt to break free.
One moment of selfish weakness haunts me, anchoring me to this life.
And now he’s here. My weakness; tempting and delicious.
 
Cian
My fists are all that keep me going; all that keep her safe.
Fighting is all I know.
But when those fists take me away and thrust me into another world surrounded by enemies who are pretending to be friends, I falter.
When fate intervenes and my heart is on the line, which one will I choose?
 
 

 
H.L. Packer is, quite frankly, a busy bee.
 
An avid reader as a child, her love for all things written waned into adulthood, the excitement of real life things taking over. But when her life slowed down as she finished her office job for maternity leave, her husband purchased her an e-reader, and that obsession was rekindled.
 
Quickly she went from reader to reviewer, and then from reviewer to blogger; street teams and promo tours galore. When she began collating her own book boxes over at Romance Readers Book Box UK and had the opportunity to include her own words and worlds, the characters began talking.
 
Those cheeky characters quickly found themselves written down on the page, and her first series was in progress.
 
When she is not coordinating her worlds, you can find her running around after her free-spirited three children, and husband, or tending to the dogs, bearded dragons, and snakes that also reside with them.
 
A break can be found soaking in a bubble bath or enjoying a glass of wine, often still with a book in her hand.
HOSTED BY:

RELEASE: First Comes Blood by Lilith Vincent

Title: First Comes Blood (A Mafia Reverse Harem Romance)

Series: Promised in Blood Book One
Author: Lilith Vincent
Genre: Dark Reverse Harem
Release Date: July 21, 2021
Cover Design: Untold Designs

Four ruthless men. A virgin mafia princess to unite them. But first, there will be blood.
 
On my seventeenth birthday, I learn a terrible secret about my family. My future is in the hands of four brutal men, and what awaits me at their hands is too terrible to imagine.
 
Four men who desire me. Four men who vow to possess me. Four men who think they can destroy me.
 
As the only daughter of Coldlake’s mayor, I should be kept far, far out of their reach. Instead, I’m being thrown to them as a sacrifice. My father insists only one of them can marry me, but all of them vow to secure my promise.
 
A promise in blood.
 
They take. I bleed. Happy birthday to me.
 
AUTHOR’S NOTE: First Comes Blood is the first book in the Promised in Blood series and ends on a cliffhanger. These books contain dark themes, violence, and a Why Choose romance with ruthlessly possessive men. The story is dark, dirty and delicious so please read at your discretion.
Download the FREE prologue novella today!
Lilith Vincent is a steamy mafia reverse harem writer who believes in living on the wild side! Why choose one when you could choose them all.

HOSTED BY:

TOUR: Laughing Dolphins by Amber Polo

Title: Laughing Dolphins
Author: Amber Polo
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Release Date: February 28, 2021
One dream. Two journeys.

1980s Boston art students follow different road signs for twenty years.

Sandy, believing she lacks talent, leaves her dreams.

Jeff, content to wander, plays with art and life.

Stepping onto parallel paths, they chase art trends and love, from Boston’s Dunkin Donuts to California’s Starbucks…from computer networks to soul networks.

“…Tales of the City without the sex and drugs and stretched over 20 years, many cities, and thousands of miles. “
 

Mount Desert Island, Maine, 1980

Sandy

Sandy’s head pressed against the window of Jeff’s borrowed Subaru hatchback. Jeff opened the door at a Dunkin Donuts and cold air rolled in. She wished the heater worked. Back on the road a Welcome to Maine billboard flashed by and, half awake, she snuggled Jeff’s New England Patriots parka over her denim jacket. A Harvard Square café double shift had made her too tired to wonder why he refused to reveal their destination. An all-night road trip was the kind of weird fun stuff Jeff thought up.

Two hundred and fifty miles north of Boston, Jeff turned off Highway 95. A half hour later, the Subie’s headlights illuminated a white wooden fence. He parked and helped Sandy out of the car and whispered, “My mom brought me here when I was a kid. She said if I made a promise as the sun rose on Mount Desert Island, it would come true. That morning I promised I’d be an artist.”

In the frigid pre-dawn air, Sandy saw their breath but not much else. She snapped her denim jacket and zipped the parka closed. Jeff took off his Red Sox cap and scrunched it onto her head. Waves crashed on distant rocks and an offshore sea breeze tickled her icy cold nose. She hoped this would be worth it.

Jeff inhaled. “Smells salty and clean. Not like washed up dead things or diesel boats.”

Sandy’s teeth chattered. “Smells like hundreds of miles of open sea.”

Jeff sniffed. “Molecules from countries we’ve never seen.” He pulled two blankets out of the car and led Sandy along an uphill path.

Sandy heard people around them but couldn’t see a thing. “What’s this? A make-out spot?”

Hissing whispers shushed her.

As her eyes adjusted to the dark, Jeff led her close to the top and spread out one blanket and helped her settle next to a large rock. He sat and tugged the second blanket around them, leaving only their faces exposed. Hugging her shivering body close, Jeff whispered, “It’ll be worth it.”

She leaned into the familiar warmth of his body. She loved Jeff’s quirky sense of adventure and wished she possessed that whimsical spark.

Jeff pulled her close and kissed her. “Our love is like a sunrise. Like a desert sun shining on ocean waves.”

She giggled. “We’ve never even seen a desert.”

“We’ll go everywhere. Together. I feel in my heart we’ll always be together. Now, promise you’ll love me forever.”

“I promise.” She tried to sound as sober as Jeff.

“If I lose you, I swear I’ll find you.”

She laughed. “I’ll never leave you.” Sometimes he was so dramatic.

A glow lined the horizon. A speck of dark gold fuzz appeared, then broadened along the distant ocean. “There,” Jeff sighed. “Now, don’t blink.”

Slowly, then faster, the sun rose above the water, its orange-red glow spreading up against layered purple clouds. The panorama was divided by a white seam holding water and air together as the sky lit the ocean in hues painters jealously craved to replicate.

Watchers released their breaths and uttered a spontaneous, “Ahhh.” No artist could ever capture this sunrise or the feeling in her heart. Jeff insisted artists needed to experience everything, even if they didn’t have the skill to translate their feelings into art. She felt hesitant to even try. Her life felt like a still life oil compared to Jeff’s animated talent.

As the sun rose higher, a frisson of excitement traveled through her body. “That was really amazing. We were the first people on the whole continent to see the sun rise.”

The sun globe now hung over the horizon. Through morning haze, the entire sky glowed luminous and soft. Jeff made her see the wonder in the world. When she was with him dreams seemed real. “I’ll remember this for the rest of my life.”

They tumbled back on the blanket and rolled together while the other watchers hurried down hill. Pulling apart only far enough to unbutton and unzip, their bodies wiggled, squirmed, and adjusted. Sandy and Jeff moved under the blanket and joined with the easy intensity of two people meant to be one.


Despite napping all the way back from Maine, Sandy was so tired. As soon as they merged into morning rush hour traffic, the honking kept her awake.

Jeff parked the Subaru and pulled her to the stairs to their second floor apartment. She hoped to sleep for a few hours before her Renaissance History Art class and the late afternoon shift at Sam’s coffeehouse. Jeff bounded up the steps, then ran back down and pushed her up before him. “Come on. I’ve got this idea. It’ll be great.”

Inside the apartment Sandy put on a pot of coffee. When Jeff got in one of these moods there was no stopping him. He laid her largest blank canvas on the floor and began throwing tubes of paint down next to it. He took a knife from the kitchen counter, bent it until it looked like a trowel and began spreading layers of paint on the canvas. Sandy slumped onto the futon to watch. As her eyes fluttered and began to close, Jeff looked up. “You got to help. I see it. But I can’t make it real alone.”

“I can’t see what’s in your head. You have to do it yourself.” Jeff was such a nut sometimes.

He teasingly pulled her off the futon onto the floor. “No way.” He grabbed a slab of mouse-gray clay and pushed it into her hand. He started layering ochre, sienna, and crimson over the white-streaked ultramarine background. “Look, see the sunrise reflected in the ocean! You must see it. Now the ocean has to reach up to greet the dawn.”

As Jeff talked and waved his arms Sandy began to knead the clay between her palms. As her fingers poked and massaged the cool mass, the heat from her hands softened it and she felt it grow more pliable under her touch. “I see a water sprite rising out of the cold dark ocean to welcome the love of the sun.”

“Wicked cool! I knew you’d get it.” Jeff reached out to hug her and they both fell on top of the canvas. Getting up, clothes spotted with globs of paint, they stared down at the canvas.

The sunrise scene was perfect.


  

Boston Art Institute Commencement, June, 1980

Jeff

All Jeff wanted was for this day to be finished. Over. Done. His father unconsciously mimicked the gesture, smoothing his own perfectly styled cut. “Well son, what next? Have you reconsidered going for an MBA? You couldn’t get into the Harvard B school with your,” he scowled, “art degree. But there are several strong programs in the Chicago area. You could live near me and Jennifer.”

“Dad, I’m an artist.” He really wished he’d skipped graduation and avoided listening to his father’s lectures on career choices. His head hurt. He wanted to escape to the pub for a beer.

“I won’t pay for you to paint and drink beer with your friends forever. Why do you think I divorced your mother?”

“I thought you divorced Mom because she was a lousy corporate wife.”

“She surely wasn’t presentable.” He looked at his ex-wife talking with Sandy. “Probably dying for a drink right now. Jennifer wanted to be here, but she’s closing another deal in London. You know, son, if you really want to be an artist, you could work for her. Corporate interior design is a fine career and you could get that MBA later.”

“Your son, the interior decorator?” Jeff hated the tone of voice his father used whenever he said the word artist, like Jeff’s talent was a personal affront to his identity and artist was a synonym for bum. His father was good at making money. Jeff didn’t care about that. When he was creating art he felt alive. His mind was on another plane. His heart thrummed with joy. No one was going to tell him how to live. If Standford Sanders thought he could convince his son to sell out, he was wrong. Dead wrong.

“Jennifer does very well with her hotel clients.”

“I don’t want to work for Trophy Wife Number Two.”

“Watch your mouth. You don’t want to wind up like your mother.”

“Mom’s happy.” Jeff saw his plump rumpled mother hug Sandy. That too-tight red dress made her look like an aging hippie. But he never doubted his mother loved him and was proud of him, no matter what he did. As a graduation gift she’d sent in his test scores and paid his Mensa membership. All his high IQ had ever done for him was to raise other people’s expectations. He wanted to create art and have a good time. Why couldn’t anyone understand. He couldn’t be creative if art was a job.

Sandy waved and walked toward him. The closer she got, the better he felt. He believed Sandy’s talent was greater than his. Sometimes he had to push her to try new things, but she was a great artist. Like their art teachers, he admitted her still lifes were only competent. But when she sculpted the human body, each piece came to life. One day in the studio he’d watched her place her hands on a block of red clay. Her face transformed into this amazing portrait of peace. And when her fingers dug into the moist mass, her whole body seemed to glow. She shaped the torso with strong gentle fingers, as if she were making love. As he watched, he’d felt a bit jealous, but then she turned to him and he saw the love in her eyes. She’d flung herself into his arms and wiped red slurry all over his best Red Sox t-shirt.

Sandy loved him for who he was. She encouraged him. She supported him. He couldn’t imagine not being with her.

Amber Polo loves to take readers on journeys to places she’s lived, visited, and imagined. Escaping her past as librarian and yoga teacher, she strives to mix humor and a little fantasy into every genre (so far fantasy, romance, historical, and woman’s fiction).
Amber is best known for The Shapeshifters’ Library, a light urban fantasy series which asks what if librarian dog-shifters faced book-burning werewolves and The Pharaoh and the Librarian, blending alternative history with a little fantasy. In 2021 look for Laughing Dolphins, a novel of coincidence – a rom com story of lovers living parallel lives for twenty years.
HOSTED BY:

RELEASE: Here to Stay by Cassandra Cripps

Title: Here to Stay
Series: Young Ballers Duet #2
Author: Cassandra Cripps
Genre: Reverse Age Gap Romance
Release Date: July 20, 2021
I was king of the basketball court until someone leaked photographs from a party.
Now I may have lost it all, my spot on the team and my athletic scholarship.
I won’t stop until I get them back.
But even that won’t be enough.
It’s not enough ruling my college campus, not if I’m by myself.
I want her, the feisty single mother I met over the summer.
She gave me the keys to her house, but I want more.
I want the keys to her heart.
She’s my queen, and I want all of her.
She thinks I’m too young, that it won’t last.
I’ll prove her wrong.
Do whatever it takes to win her over and convince her I can be the man she needs.
That I’m here to stay.
I’m not stopping until she’s mine.
All of her.
 
Cassandra cusses like a sailor, is addicted to tattoos, hardcore music, and chocolate. Her kids believe she is an actual vampire. Oh, and occasionally, she has been known to write a book or two when not busy in her garden.
 
Her novels straddle the line between taboo romance and romantic suspense. With themes as complex and varied as the author herself, they will leave you on the edge of your seat.
HOSTED BY:

COVER: Claiming Menace by L. Wilder

Title: Claiming Menace

Series: Ruthless Sinners MC
Author: L. Wilder
Genre: MC Romance (standalone)
Release Date: August 3, 2021
Photographer: Wander Aguiar Photography
Cover Model: Thane Wadams
Cover Design: Mayhem Cover Creations
The second I laid eyes on Aubrey Cash, I knew she was hiding something.
The blond haired, blue eyed beauty wasn’t who she said she was.
I couldn’t force myself to turn her away…
So I hired her.
As the club’s hacker, it was my job to uncover secrets—secrets like hers.
It was the only way I could make sure my brothers were safe.
But with each day that passed, I became more and more distracted by my need to have her.
It soon became her that I wanted to protect….her that I wanted to claim as mine.
She claimed me instead
 
 
 
 
 
 
Leslie Wilder grew up in a small town in West Tennessee. A country girl at heart, she’s always thought that life is too short, but she had no idea how short it really was until her brother passed away in 2014. She’s always been an avid reader, loving the escape only a great book can give, and wondered if she had what it took to write one of the wild romances she’d come to adore. With the support of her family and friends, she published Inferno: A Devil Chaser’s MC, one year after her brother’s death. With him in mind, she fulfilled her lifetime dream of writing. Since then, she’s completed the Devil Chaser’s Series and continued on with the Satan’s Fury MC Series. She has so many stories in her head, and can’t wait to share each and every one.
Leslie has been blown away by the support of her readers, appreciating every message, review, and encouraging word she’s received over the past year. She looks forward to continuing this journey with them for years to come.
 
 
 
HOSTED BY: