Category Archives: Heart of a Vampire
What is your favorite thing about Romance? Well, we authors are ready to share our romantic tips and favorite romance reads! Starting on Friday and ending on August 31st, over 100 Authors and Bloggers will share their favorite things about romance, reading romance, and dating.
And while we do that, we are EACH doing a giveaway. Yep. There will be over 100 giveaways on each blog hosted by that Author or Blogger.
But that’s not all….
We have THREE grand prizes. You as a reader can go to EACH blog and comment with your email address and be entered to win. Yep, you can enter over 100 times!
1st Grand Prize: A Kindle Fire or Nook Tablet
2nd Grand Prize: A $130 Amazon or B&N Gift Card
3rd Grand Prize: The following Swag Pack!
What do you love about romance?
Leave your answer in the comments (with your email address to be contacted if you win my prize or the Main Hop prizes).
Two winners will be randomly chosen from the comments to receive a $5 gift card to Amazon.com
Then, check out the other blogs in the Hop to be entered as many times as you comment for the Grand Prizes.
Good luck, and have fun 🙂
I’ve written everything from urban fantasy, to paranormal, to erotic romance, and I’ve enjoyed each story.
Recently, the whole 50 shades of you know what, has plopped erotic and BDSM stories in the news seemingly all over the place.
I think that’s awesome for authors, because in my mind, it’s just one more thing getting headlines and therefore getting people thinking about books and reading.
Okay, so I may be a bit optimistic, but I’m okay with that 😉
It also helped me to take the plunge and publish the first of a short story series I’ve had in mind for a couple years, based on Red Riding Hood… adult style, LOL.
Most know of me, or at least have heard my tale.
Certainly you would recognize my crimson cloak, perhaps you have even been regaled by tales of my battles against the wolves.
And other News
Take care and hope your weather is turning into fall. Ours is not ~ we’ve still been in the 110 range, with high humidity. *Steps outside and literally melts*
I was planning on doing a cover reveal & sneak peek a week ago, but things have been so busy.
Luckily, the book is ready to go 🙂
Release Date: July 13th, 2012
After centuries alone, can a vampire king trust the woman who’s woken his heart?
Jordan MacDougal, laird and King of his vampire clan, walks a thin line of civility between his clan and the local shifter pack. When his vampires began to disappear and the wolves accuse the intriguing woman who’s touched his heart of being evil, he discovers that the traitor in his midst may be closer than he thinks.
A newly turned vampire, Dalia Jensen wakes to an unusual and frightening new world with no memory of the past year of her life. Accused of working with the Master Vampire who held her prisoner, her inability to remember the truth leaves her reeling under the allegations of vicious past actions. Uncertain of her culpability, she’s unable to trust her own instincts as the reigning Vampire King turns her world upside down.
When the wolves call for her trial, demanding her life for those killed and tortured during that blank year, Jordan and Dalia must work together to find the truth, and save the love blooming between them.
The woman chained to the steel bed frame hadn’t stirred in days. Soon she’d wake.
Jordan MacDougal sat in the inky blackness of the basement, waiting. The darkness didn’t bother him. He could see as well at night as any mortal could in the sun.
He spun a wooden match between his fingers, turning it around and around, unable to tear his gaze from the bed. After three days, he still couldn’t figure out exactly what about Dalia Jensen had commanded his attention in the first place.
He should have let her die.
In the millennia he’d been a vampire, he’d only turned a handful of people. He regretted each and every one. Yet while watching this woman waste away in the large hospital bed, knowing she’d been put there by Thomas Montgomery, who’d been a vampire the epitome of evil, Jordan hadn’t been able to stop himself.
She was so young. Only twenty-one according to her driver’s license tucked in his back pocket. And even in a coma-like state, she exuded a vibrancy which drew him.
He forced himself to stand and stretch, to look away from the woman. His hands fisted and the match stick cracked. Sighing, he dropped the two pieces next to the candle on the table.
Like a magnet, the woman drew him once more.
Large chunks of bright pink streaked through her white-blonde hair curling to just below her pixie chin. The startling color was amazing to one as old as he.
In his time, women hadn’t painted their faces with make-up, or dyed their hair unnatural colors.
It was sometimes disconcerting to be faced with how things changed as time passed.
A thick quilt disguised the generous curves of her body. Though the dungeon rooms were kept warm, the newly turned needed the extra heat until they learned control.
Screams from a friend of his who’d been recently changed echoed through the walls, piercing the soundproofing. Jordan ran his hands through his hair, frustration snaking through him. Chase had been created by the same vampire responsible for Dalia’s near death.
And like all new vampires, Chase was crazed with his bloodlust, even three weeks after his awakening.
Staring at Dalia’s face, Jordan memorized the lines and curves. She would wake soon, only to face a huge change. Hunger would make her, like Chase, a ravenous creature needing to kill, to drink. Jordan’s powerful blood would hopefully help the new vampire calm. And his duty was to be here every night, to feed her while trying to break through to the remnants of her humanity.
If she survived the final change.
Once she became lucid, they’d have ‘the talk’, one of the duties of being clan King he despised.
Horror and disappointment would fill her eyes as he explained what she was–and how her old life was forever lost.
This time, he’d have to add how it was his fault.
A knock pounded on the cell’s thick metal door.
Jordan strode across the room and slipped out into the hall. It took a moment for his eyes to adjust from pitch black to bright light. He looked into a feminine version of his own face.
“Fionah? I’m busy,” he said cautiously, unable to read which mood she was in this hour.
His little sister grinned. “Aye, brothair. When are you not?” She swept her long, silk skirts to the side and stepped for the door at his back.
He held his arm out, blocking her. “What do you want?”
She raised one blonde eyebrow, her eyes widening. She giggled and Jordan realized today she was the child, rather than the thousand-year-old vampire.
“To see your new pet,” she replied with a smile.
He sighed. “You know well she’s not a pet.”
“What else then?” She twirled her long skirts around her ankles. “You’ve not brought over a human in hundreds of years. Why now?”
If he had an answer, he might have spoken. Instead, he merely crossed his arms over his chest and stared at his sister.
At the other end of the hall, Eric, one of his Viking guards, rushed down the steps and hurried their way. The man stopped abruptly when he caught sight of Fionah.
Jordan’s guards never knew what to make of his sister, either. She could switch from child-like to screaming fury in a blink, without cause. Her mind was a strange thing, had been since they were children growing up on clan lands in Scotland. A thousand years had only increased her strangeness.
A whisper of movement broke the silence from the room at his back. He scowled, the urge to rejoin Dalia pressing. “It there a party going on down here I wasn’t informed of?”
Eric’s eyes, usually full of laughter, were instead filled with worry. “Luci is missing.”
Jordan straightened as heat fired his veins. Not again. “Where?”
“She was on the blood run to the hospital.”
Jordan barely refrained from slamming his fist into the stone wall. Who in the hell was still taking his people? He’d thought the problem solved when the rogue vampire responsible for Dalia’s condition had been killed. “Did she make it to the hospital?”
Eric shook his head.
Fionah stepped forward, brushing long curls over her shoulder. Her eyes held intelligence and her child-like grin was gone. “How do you know she didn’t make it?”
Eric shot her a glare. “’Tis my duty.”
Jordan rubbed the hilt of the dagger at his belt. “Get some men together. We’ll–” The sound of stirring inside the cell stopped him. He glanced from Eric to the door, torn. He couldn’t leave Dalia, not during her wakening.
Eric’s eyes flashed. “I’ll get a group together. We’ll find Luci.”
Jordan nodded. “Report to me on your return.”
Eric glanced at Fionah before heading to the stairs.
She stared at Jordan, her blue eyes flushing with red. Waving at the door, she demanded, “You put this woman before the clan?”
“I turned her. It is my duty to help her.”
“Why?” She shook her head. “What’s so special about this girl?”
“I don’t know.”
Fionah studied him, then shrugged and glided down the long hall. Jordan sighed, relieved she hadn’t continued her questions. He didn’t have any answers.
He slipped back inside the room. The woman was slowly walking. It wouldn’t be long now.
She woke with a start. Agony seared through her, bringing a scream to her throat. Her heart beat a deafening rhythm and her stomach clenched with fiery hunger. She jerked upright, staring into the darkness, her thoughts scattered like petals on the wind.
She reached up to rub her pounding temples but cold metal weighed heavily on her wrists. Chains rattled.
The shadows whispered a soothing, “Hush.”
Only then did she realize she was keening sharp cries from a need she couldn’t name. She hurt. Oh how she hurt. Her body ached, her stomach roiled. And she was so damn hungry.
A match flared. Candlelight spread a flickering pool over a man sitting near the bed. His features were harsh, yet his blue eyes held kindness.
The pulse beating at his throat drew her attention. She could hear his calm heartbeat over the erratic thumping of her own. The fire consuming her flared and she lunged.
The chains yanked her back to the mattress, keeping her from reaching the man.
Sharp canines pierced her tongue. The coppery taste of blood welled in her mouth. Startled, she stopped pulling at the chains, trying to think as the sweet taste brought her a bit of clarity.
The man left the chair to crouch beside the bed. She couldn’t stop from jumping at him again, but he stayed just out of reach.
“It’s all right, Dalia. You’ll feel better soon.”
Dalia? That was her name. Yes. Her thoughts grew clearer, though the pain rushing through her body was only getting worse.
He raised his wrist to his mouth. An urgent scent of salty copper bit into the air, making her stomach clench. He lowered his arm and her gaze locked on the blood welling over his tanned skin.
“Drink.” He held his hand in front of her face.
A red haze covered her vision and she sank her teeth into his skin. Blood, warm and comforting, filled her mouth. Mindless with a hunger she couldn’t place, unable to even feel disgust at what she was doing, she drank greedily.
The fire in her belly roared and she drank more, wanting to pull him closer, to wrap her hands around his arm and hold him tight to her lips. The chains rattled loudly, still keeping her from grabbing him. She growled in frustration at the cold metal.
Slowly, the flames in her stomach dampened.
Voices, silently screaming inside her head, broke through the fog. She jerked back, pressing against the headboard, as she realized exactly what she’d just done. Her breathing sped up as panic teased at her senses.
Shadow’s filled the man’s eyes. His lips curled into a fierce frown and she shivered at the anger blazing across his face.
With a cry, she scrambled as far as she could across the small bed and pressed into the ice cold wall in the corner.
“It’s all right,” he said gently.
She shook her head, trying to straighten out her thinking. Nothing made sense and she couldn’t even remember why.
“Dalia.” His voice rumbled, his accent thickening. “Come to me.”
Heat flared in the room as his voice tugged on her. Warmth slid over her, prickling her skin, and burrowing deep inside her mind. She shook her head as the buzzing of his command grew and the urge to do as he said increased. Calling for her to go to his side, his voice echoed and repeated in her mind.
She concentrated on listening to the crazed screaming and jabbering of her own internal voice. Curling into a ball, she fisted her hands over her ears. The chains rattled but she barely heard them over his insistent call.
Release Day Giveaway
Leave me a note in the comments with which character you like the most from the excerpt 🙂
I’ll pick 2 winners by the end of the weekend to win a $5 amazon gift card!!
Good Luck and thanks for stopping by,
First, I have to say a huge
to everyone for your support during my Bloodstorm release & blog tour. Wow, it was amazing.
I had over 20 stops, with some bumps along the way, LOL. But everyone was great, and so many people not only showed up, but followed the tour 😉
My final prizes are for the blog hostess with the most comments, and the blog commenter who left the most comments.
Urban Girl Reader won the $20 hostess prize, WOOT!!
Now, for the $20 most commenter winner.
Here’s where it got complicated. You see, remember the ‘over 20 blog stops’?
There were 2 lovely ladies who hit nearly every single post.
I couldn’t choose between them (using random.org).
So, I’ve decided to give both ladies a gift card, as a tie 🙂
Sarah & Tina, you’ll get the certificates through email.
Thank you all for your support. Two weeks after release day, Bloodstorm hit Amazon Bestseller lists, Woot!
I love my readers, they’re the Very Best!!! ❤ ❤
Release date (squee!!!) is this Friday the 13th. I love those days.
Also, don’t forget to come back on Friday for my Super-Duper Release Day Par-tay 🙂
****NOW FREE at all E-tailers****
When duty forces a shaman to stop a vampire from her revenge, love doesn’t just burn… it bites.
For two hundred years, Niki DeVeraux has been tracking the monster who murdered her family and made her a vampire. She finally catches up to him in a small Arizona town, only to face more than she bargained for. Amid an imperious vampire King, a shaky truce between the local clan and shifter pack, and a too-sexy sheriff who makes her remember she’s still a woman, Niki’s single-minded purpose is threatened for the first time since her turning.
Between his duties as Keeper of the peace for the Magic Council and heir to his tribe’s shamanistic magic, Sheriff Shane Spencer’s job is to protect humanity and stop the friction between the local Arcaine races before it turns into an all out blood war. To make matters worse, there’s an irresistible rouge vampire in town enflaming his senses.
When wolves start turning up dead, the tension between the paranormal races grows and suspicion falls on Niki. Shane knows she’s not to blame, and it has nothing to do with the primal urges she stirs within him. Working together, they must find a way to stop the hostilities from going over the edge. Trouble is, the desires raging between Niki and Shane might prove more dangerous than the surrounding threats.
The pitch black tunnel, complete with crumbling dirt walls and cobwebs, didn’t frighten Nicola DeVeraux. The dark held nothing to fear. She’d seen too many real monsters in the years since her death.
Besides, her night vision was as good as any human’s in the bright light of day.
She stepped over a skeleton, then around the grisly remains of a wild boar.
At the far end of the tunnel, candlelight flared to life, as if welcoming her into the witch’s den. Her boots stirred up dust as she entered the small cave.
The walls glinted with a mix of crystalline dirt and flecked stone. The scent of a nearby spring layered heavy moisture in the air. In the center of the cavern stood a long rectangular table, covered by a black velvet cloth. Strange items, some unrecognizable at first–or even second–glance, littered the top.
Spinning at the gravelly, androgynous voice, Niki grabbed for the dagger at her waist.
The old crone cackled as she entered, her grin nearly toothless. Stringy gray hair straggled around her plump, wrinkled, face. Jezamine glided to the table. “I didn’t think ye’d answer my summons.”
“You asked me to come, old woman. I assume there’s a reason.” Though the dark tunnel hadn’t scared her, the witch did. Niki forced herself to take another step, though she kept a tense grip on the hilt of her still-sheathed dagger.
“What question do ye ask the gods?”
Ignoring the tension roiling in her stomach, she moved to the woman’s side. “They’re finally ready to answer me?”
Jezamine laughed again, the sound sending skitters down Niki’s spine. “Ye know they take their time, girl.”
“Fine. I want to know if I’ll finally find the man who murdered my family.”
The old woman reached for a silver cup etched with strange markings. She shook it three times before dumping the contents into a circle made from small, round crystals. Human finger bones clattered against one another. She bent over the table.
Jezamine had looked as ancient a hundred years ago as she did now. “Hmm. Yes. Mmm.” The old woman poked at one bone sticking above the others. “But what ‘bout…”
Niki eased onto one of the dark wooden stools at the far end of the table.
The priestess sprung upright, staring at Niki with her fathomless dark eyes. Her inky black lips stretched in a grimacing smile. “It’s yer birthday. Samhain be a good day for birthin’.”
Niki clenched her fists in her lap. “Not really.”
Halloween was a cursed day to be born. It had brought her nothing but pain, brought her family nothing but death.
The old woman poked at the bones again. “Maybe. Maybe ye be finding the monster ye seek, maybe be getting some other kind of lucky.” Jezamine’s screeching laugh echoed from the cavern walls.
Shivers inched along Niki’s spine and flooded into her legs. Thankfully she was sitting down. “What do you mean, some other kind of lucky?”
Jezamine’s dark eyes glittered. “Girl, I don’t think ye want me telling. Don’t think the Fates want me telling.”
“Then what about Thomas?” Her nails poked painfully into her palms.
“Lil’ girl. Why ye wanna spend all yer time tracking down pure evil?”
Memories flashed. The Halloween ball, celebrating not just her seventeenth birthday, but her engagement as well. The plantation in the bayou, ringing with music and laughter. At least until dawn arrived, the sun shining down on nothing but death.
Niki shook the old pain away. “Duty,” she repeated. “He owes me vengeance.”
“’Tis a fine line ye walk between revenge and justice.” Jezamine shook her head, the corners of her lips drooping in a frown. “Revenge make yer soul dark as his.”
“I don’t care.” In the far corner of the cave, wisps of white fog crept up the walls. Soon they would form into the shapes of those long dead.
She jumped to her feet, turning away. “Can you tell me anything else?”
Jezamine walked around the table to face her. “’Ware child. He who turned ye may also be the cause of yer downfall.”
Niki lifted her chin, facing down the old woman’s words, the Fates themselves. “Not until after I’ve killed him.”
As Shane Spencer finished the last of his beer, his deputy, Chase Campton, strode by, slapping him on the back.
“Another re-election year well done, Sheriff.”
The small crowd in the bar cheered and the waitress, Rae, slipped another bottle onto his corner table.
Shane tipped his cowboy hat politely and plastered on a fake smile, unable to join in the spirit. All day, something dark had been hanging over the town. Not that anyone else sensed it. He needed to go to his childhood home. On the edge of town, the house sat at the borderline of the Apache reservation and Moss Creek.
His father, head shaman and seer, would know what the signs meant. Once again, doubt crept up inside Shane. How did the Fates pass over the eldest in their family and choose him as their father’s successor? It had never before happened in their tribe’s history.
He nursed the beer, deep in thought.
The door banged open, a cold autumn breeze swirled the smoky air. A woman followed it in, stopping just inside the bar. The air vibrated with unseen power. Even the deepest shadows shivered. Everyone in the bar fell silent, turning as one to look her way.
She held her head high, long black hair curling over her shoulders like silk. Her bright green gaze scanned the tables. She passed over Shane without pause, only to snap back to him.
Magic filled the room and the hair on his forearms rose. The other people in the bar were forgotten. Only the two of them existed.
His heartbeat slowed, skipped a beat, sped up like a race horse barreling down the track.
The doorframe towered over her slight form. Yet her body was ripe, lush with curves. The tight blue jeans emphasized her hips, the narrowness of her waist. And the sleeveless white tank showed her breasts off to perfection.
He swallowed, though his mouth was dry.
Her eyes widened and even over the distance of the room, he heard her soft, feminine gasp. Palms slick, he shakily set the bottle back on the table.
His blood screamed primitive urges… demanding he drag her off to his cave.
It wasn’t like him.
Women, even the most beautiful, had never affected him this way. He’d met with the rich and beautiful, models and actresses galore during his time in the city. Gathering the remaining shreds of his willpower, he closed his eyes calling on the magic of his ancestors. The spirits of the earth responded and power surged through him. Magic raised the hairs on his arms and the back of his neck as the whispers of the spirits of the nearby forest filled him. Ignoring it to concentrate on what was here and now, he reopened his eyes. Colorful hues surrounded everyone in the bar.
Her aura struck him like a punch to the gut. A deep maroon, with flecks of black, revealed exactly what she was.
And not local.
He blinked again, letting the sight fade.
The woman finally looked away and took another step into the bar. As quickly as it had hit, the power surging through the room dissipated. People once more talked and laughed, raising their glasses in toasts.
What the hell kind of vampire was she, to cause such a raging lust?
The woman strode to the bar, her glare shouting ‘Don’t mess with me’. Though she didn’t look old enough to drink, let alone be in a bar in the first place, the bartender immediately poured her a shot of whiskey.
Shane would be talking to Henry about it later.
First, he needed to figure out what this vampire was doing in Moss Creek. Sure, the small mountain town was a hub of paranormal activity, with the local vampire clan and the shifter pack taking advantage of the surrounding nature. But rogues generally tended to stay out of places dominated by orderly clans, knowing the structure and politics were handed down by the Magic Council.
And the Council didn’t like Rogues.
Cupping the shot glass in her hands, the woman leaned towards Henry before the older man could move away.
Shane tensed in his seat. If she was looking for a meal…
Henry murmured something. The woman nodded, downed her shot and laid some money on the bar before turning and striding out.
Shane tried to relax, but he still yearned for the stranger, to touch her, smell her, nearly as badly as when she’d been staring at him, as if she could see down to his very soul.
Niki kept to the shadows of the forest as she skirted the parking lot. The only light came from a blue neon sign on the building’s roof, claiming someone called Henry owned the Spitfire bar.
She stopped near a clump of three trees opposite the bar. The center one was marked with a red X. How original. Yet this was where her contact wanted to meet, so who was she to complain?
It was nearly a half-hour later than their appointed time and she wasn’t quite sure why she was still here. Her stomach grumbled lightly. She needed to eat, the blood she’d consumed earlier hadn’t been enough. Without both food and blood her strength would wane. She couldn’t afford that, not now when she was so close to her prey.
She’d give this snitch five more minutes.
Only three passed before the air whispered through the forest at her back. Niki turned, knife in hand, holding it hidden down by her thigh.
“Looking for me?” a husky whisper drifted out of the darkness.
“You Baal?” She tried not to snort. Sometimes vampires tried on grandioseness, as if eternal life made them superman. Which, she guessed, in some ways it did.
“Maybe. Depends. You got the money?”
“Sure. If you have the information you promised.”
“Lemme see the cash first, lady.”
Niki reached slowly into her front pocket and pulled out two one-hundred dollar bills. The snitch tried to grab it, but she held tight. “Information first.”
He stepped into a bit of moonlight and grinned, eyes flushed with red. His thin lips drew back, revealing long fangs as he chuckled. “I got something else for you.”
She sighed. “Let me guess. You’re not going to give me the information, assuming a creep like you even knows anything.”
“Got that right.” Confusion twisted his pale features, as if he didn’t quite follow. Then he grinned again. “But you sure gonna give me something. Ain’t just money.”
Never trust a snitch. “Let’s get on with it then.” She tucked the bills back in her pocket.
His grin twitched, eyes flickered, following the money. He shook himself, confidence coming back.
She tightened her grip on the dagger. He lunged.
Niki used his momentum to fling him against the trunk of the tree. His head slammed in to the painted red X.
“Damn it,” he yelled, quickly recovering and charging her again.
She waited until he was close, then rammed her knee into his groin. Not even vampires were immune to that pain.
Hope you enjoyed 🙂