Friday, March 24, 2017
Cutting Out is the final book in the series. Once again, Anne Cain created this beautiful cover. It'll resonate with readers who've been following the story.
Sequel to Cleave
Hours after stepping off the yacht where they had their mock wedding, real life intrudes, and arguments arise between Sloan Driscoll and Trent Hamilton. Seeking relief at his BDSM club, Trent bumps into an old army buddy who tells him things are different now that DADT has been repealed. Meanwhile, Sloan receives a frantic call from ex-lover, Cole Fujiwara, who tells him that his twins and ex-wife have been kidnapped. Cole asks Sloan for help but makes him promise not to include Trent in the rescue attempt.
Trent considers the opportunity to resume a career cut short, and despite Sloan's threat to postpone the wedding, he leaves for the Middle East as an independent mercenary while Sloan rushes to aid Cole.
In Tokyo, disturbing revelations draw the former couple together, and old feelings are rekindled. Despite this new understanding, neither man makes a move. Sloan is focused on rescuing Cole’s family without jeopardizing his relationship with Trent, while Cole must prepare himself to survive disappointment if Sloan chooses to segue into married life as a military spouse.
BEFORE LEAVING Cole’s apartment, I had a double shot of vodka to calm down and then brushed my teeth to get rid of the vile combination of booze and vomit. I would have had a cigarette as well, except I’d given them up again a few months ago and Trent would smell the tobacco before I even lit the damn stick. Way back when, I would have resorted to weed, because there was no way I’d be able to carry this off sober. Then again, I doubted I’d succeed despite whatever chemical aids were handy. Trent would see right through my lies, and in all honesty, I wanted to tell him what was going on. The only thing stopping me was the idea I’d be responsible for three lives that would surely be jeopardized by his interference or, worse yet, that Niki and Keni would be sold to the highest bidder because I couldn’t keep a secret. Christ, this was a goddamn mess.
And what about the wedding scheduled ten days from now? Cole couldn’t wait around until then. We’d have to move on this as soon as possible or those gangsters would send Cole another care package. I didn’t love Noriko, but we’d found a comfortable truce after Cole’s suicide attempt and got along on a superficial level. She was the children’s mother, after all, and I didn’t want her maimed any more than she’d already been. I wondered if they had given her some sort of anesthetic before they’d lopped off her finger. The very thought of that scene made me shudder.
Trent was already home: the music was on, and votive candles were lit in the living room. He’d planned a seduction to make up for his earlier tirade. Normally, I’d already be sporting wood, but my mind was too occupied with Cole’s current situation to get into the scene laid before me. Trent had the familiar tools handy, and this time, when I saw the blade, I winced. My sympathy for Noriko’s missing digit overtook the lust that usually swamped me when I knew we were about to do some knife play. Tonight would be the first time in our relationship that I’d balk at Trent’s implied suggestion.
If you've enjoyed the previews of the Cutting Cords Series and would like to purchase all four books at once you can find the box set at Dreamspinner Press for $9.99.
Friday, March 17, 2017
Cleave is the third book in the Cutting Cords Series. It follows right after Vessel (wherein the big break-up occurred) and Cole's father has just died. Now we deal with the aftermath of his machinations.
Here's a preview.
We headed toward the cluster of people near the open casket. I averted my eyes because I had no desire to look at Ken in death. I was still angry at him for manipulating Cole and destroying our relationship. Now it was too late to call him a conniving son of a bitch, and I refused to give him more than a passing glance. I was here for only one reason. Cole was facing his dad but turned toward me the instant he felt my presence.
“I’m here,” I said, reaching for his hand. “I’m sorry for your loss.”
Cole’s stoic façade fell apart as soon as he heard my voice. He could barely croak out the words of acknowledgment. It broke my heart to see him in such pain, and every protective instinct was immediately resurrected. I enfolded him in my arms and held him tightly against my chest.
“There’s a small room over there,” my dad said, motioning toward a door marked Private. “Why don’t you guys see if it’s unoccupied?”
I held Cole’s hand and gave Freddie, his guide dog, the signal to stay. Fortunately, Freddie still recognized me and obeyed. We headed toward the room, and when we stepped into the privacy of the small office, Cole broke down completely. I knew how strong the bond was between him and his father, and there was nothing I could say to make this any easier. All I could do was support him and let him grieve. My tears fell in sympathy as I listened to him sob. Finally, he broke away and apologized for falling apart. I noticed a few new streaks of silver weaving through his dark hair and a frown line that hadn’t been there before. He was only thirty-four, but today, he looked closer to forty.
“I’m sorry,” Cole mumbled, wiping tears away with the back of his hand. The gesture was so childlike it resonated, tugging on my inherent need to protect him. I drew him back into my arms and held the trembling body that felt much thinner than I remembered. Everything about Cole seemed different today except for my feelings, which arose like a phoenix.
“You’ll be okay,” I said, whispering words of encouragement.
“I didn’t want you to see me like this,” Cole said, sniffling against my shirt, “but I’ve missed you so much. You have no idea.”
DSP Link: https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/cleave-by-
Friday, March 10, 2017
Sequel to Cutting Cords.
Five years into their relationship, Sloan Driscoll’s peaceful existence is suddenly upended. His lover, Cole Fujiwara, gives him an ultimatum: agree to a surrogate birth or break up. Noriko Evans, a beautiful woman of Japanese/American descent, is handpicked by Cole’s father to be the surrogate. At the same time, Trent Hamilton, model and established Dominant, sets his eyes on Sloan, offering him another life choice.
Sloan is thrown off balance by this series of events he can neither understand nor control. He’d thought the topic of children had been laid to rest years ago, but with the advent of a new form of genetic testing, Cole’s fear of passing on retinitis pigmentosa, a disease that leads to blindness, has been greatly reduced. Noriko’s abrupt appearance threatens Sloan, as does Sloan’s attraction to Trent and a side of the BDSM world he’d never thought to explore.
Will Sloan be able to muster the inner strength he’ll need to deal with one shocking revelation after another, or will he succumb to a dangerous coping mechanism? His decisions will either lead to salvation... or hasten the end of the relationship that literally saved his life.
IT DIDN’T take but a minute, and Cole was in my face hissing, “Why
did you walk out?”
“Would you have preferred that I stay and make a scene?
Really, Cole,” I spat out furiously, “did you hope that announcing the
arrival of the Virgin Mary in front of an audience would make me
jump up and down with joy? How fucking stupid do you think I am?”
“Sloan, please don’t go off on me. Let me explain.”
“There isn’t much to explain, is there? You and your parents
have obviously arrived at a decision without consulting me.”
“Please,” Cole said, reaching out for me. I stepped back,
hardening my heart even as he groped for me. I moved left to walk
out the door, but I underestimated his internal radar as he pounced in my direction and held me tight.
“Don’t pull away again.”
He begged this time, and I had no choice but to stay and listen.
“I never told you about Noriko because I didn’t know. Mom and
Dad showed up with her tonight and presented her to me like a fait
accompli. I had no say in the matter.”
“What a crock of shit, Cole.”
“It’s the truth, however stupid it may sound.”
“Who is she, anyway? Does she live around here? Does she
surrogate for a living?”
“She’s from Japan… Kyoto, to be exact. And, no, she’s not a
professional surrogate. My father talked her into coming to America and doing this for us.”
“Where did he find her?”
“I don’t know.”
“How can you not? That is the most basic question.”
“Sloan, she’s here to help us start our family.”
“Us? You mean she’s here to help your father, don’t you?”
“I haven’t agreed to this plan, and last time I checked I’m your
partner and have equal rights in this decision.”
Friday, March 3, 2017
When Sloan Driscoll and Cole Fujiwara become reluctant roommates, neither man is willing to share too much. Sloan is instantly attracted to Cole but knows it's a hopeless cause; Cole has a steady girlfriend. But one night they share a joint, and Cole opens a window neither anticipated.
A relationship may be impossible—both men are living with heart-breaking secrets. While Sloan is smart, sassy, and a brilliant graphic artist, he’s also a pothead with severe body image problems. Cole, a former major league pitcher, has his own personal crisis: he's going blind. Sloan and Cole are suffering on so many levels, they might not realize that the ultimate salvation could be within each other’s arms.
Cole spent his Saturday practicing how to be blind. He was well aware his limited sight could last for years at this level, but he had to face the reality that tomorrow everything might change.
He started by putting on a sleeping mask, one that Juliana had left the last time she'd slept over. She hated the morning sun and always wore a mask to bed.
Learn to rely on your other senses. He kept hearing his doctors words, as if they would make it all better and act like the magic wand he needed. The sense of touch is a lifesaver. He thought about Sloan as he put the mask in place.
His hands had told him a lot about his roommate. He knew from touching his face that he was a good-looking man. His lips were well formed, his skin clear, his hair abundantly full. He had long eyelashes that tickled Cole when he pressed his face close or nuzzled his neck. His sense of smell told him that Sloan was inherently a clean person and that he had good teeth, because his breath was always fresh. His touch confirmed that he was more lean than fat, and he had some dry patches of skin on his legs and arms that needed to be addressed. His touch had also told him when Sloan was aroused.
Cutting Cords is book one in the Cutting Cord Series.
Buy Links: Dreamspinner Press (currently on sale for 25% off)
Friday, February 24, 2017
A plot bunny + hours of YouTube clips featuring famous ice skaters like Johnny Weir = Enforcing Emory. It released in 2015 and continues to be one of my bestsellers. Here's a short excerpt.
“Did that man really tell you to stay away from his family?”
Nikolai nodded an affirmative but immediately realized he should have lied. His mother was fiercely protective of her children, especially Nikolai, her only son. She loved her three daughters unconditionally, but they didn’t have to struggle for recognition or live up to the ideal Igor had saddled on her Kolya. She’d never tolerate anyone who thought he was better than her boy.
“What’s the guy’s name?” Irina asked. She was two years younger than Nik and had taken to Western society like a duck to water. Hooked on social media, she was never far from her iPad. “Let’s google the creep.”
Nikolai snorted. Irina considered Wikipedia and Google the sources of all information, and if she couldn’t find her answer with a few keystrokes, it didn’t exist. She whistled in astonishment after she typed in Emory Lowe and hundreds of links popped up. Images of the saucy young man in every costume imaginable filled her screen, and everyone looked over her shoulders to see what was so shocking. There were photos of Emory caught leaping in the air, frozen in time as the camera captured him performing one intricate move after another. When Irina looked him up on YouTube, they watched him perform his short program at Nationals, and the room hushed as the sound of Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet filled the room. Nikolai couldn’t take his eyes off the tiny screen, mesmerized by the graceful movements.
The gangly youth was artistic on the ice, a fluid nymph who appeared oblivious to the huge crowd staring down at him. He owned the performance, one minute soft and tender, the next fiercely determined to win his prize, executing the complicated number with a series of jumps, including a quad, and ending the program with an I-spin that seemed to go on forever. The applause when he stopped and posed without wavering was loud and heartfelt, and that funny grin Emory seemed to have mastered appeared through the heavy makeup. Nikolai felt something twist deep down in the pit of his stomach. Christ, the figure skater wasn’t just bragging—he was dead serious. The guy was fantastic, and Nikolai felt like a lumbering oaf comparing his skills to Emory’s immense talent.
He looked up from the handheld device sheepishly. “I guess he wasn’t lying.”
“Bah!” Igor said loudly. “He’s a poofter!”
Friday, February 17, 2017
Here's an excerpt from Yesterday, a period piece that takes place during the last few months of the Pahlavi dynasty. The year is 1978 and the setting is Karachi, Pakistan. My main characters come from two very different backgrounds and, despite all the warnings, start a friendship that changes their lives forever. During this tumultuous time in our history, I think it's more important than ever to focus on our similarities rather than our differences. Love is love.
We got to the round table, and he pulled out the chair for me. I was taken aback by the gesture; I didn’t think royals did that sort of thing. I obviously had some preconceived notions I’d have to discard.
Once we were settled, he asked, “What would you like to see today?”
“How about I let you decide?”
“All right,” he agreed. “Why don’t we stroll through Empress Market for starters?”
“What is it?”
“The oldest, filthiest, most congested bazaar in the world, but it’s a wonderful and interesting place to visit. You can film anything you want and shop as well. How does that sound?”
“Perfect,” I replied. “Then what?”
“They’re preparing lunch for us at my place.” Candidly, he mentioned, “I thought I’d show off my animals. You did say you were interested in the homing pigeons, correct?”
“Among other things,” I replied.
He reached over and took off my sunglasses. “That’s better. It’s hard to know if you speak the truth without looking into your eyes.”
“What do you see, Kamran?” Hopefully not what I’m thinking, I added to myself. He was better-looking in the daylight, and I realized I would throw caution to the wind if he so much as hinted at the possibility. We were far enough from Iran to be safe, I rationalized. Why would anyone bother with me and a royal so far down the line of succession they’d have to obliterate the shah’s entire family for Kamran to stand any kind of chance at claiming the throne? As usual, my mind was off on a tangent, imagining one exciting scenario after another. Good thing I was going into filmmaking.
“The obvious is that which is never seen until someone expresses it simply,” he said softly.
“His communication skills are far better than mine,” Kamran stated.
“But you’re alive,” I countered. “I’d prefer to hear your own thoughts.”
Kamran stood and held out his hand. “Why don’t you go and change. I’ll be waiting for you in the white Land Rover that’s parked at the hotel entrance.”
All my novels are currently 25% off at Dreamspinner Press. Check out my back list here.
Friday, February 10, 2017
I've been immersed in Chyna's universe for the last few months. The sequel has been completed and sent off to my pub for consideration. Now I'm writing the spin-off featuring a new couple. Last week I watched Katie Couric's National Geographic special called Gender Revolution. She shared a lot of good information, and it was especially gratifying for me, as an author. to know I wrote my first intersex character accurately. If you're interested, here's a snippet from the book Chyna Doll and the buy links. Dreamspinner Press is having a special sale on paperbacks for a week. As with all their books, if you buy a paperback you get the e-book for free.
Here's the excerpt of Chyna Doll
All Chyna wanted was to fit in. She’d have given anything to be one of her dumpy half sisters or adorable like Chip, but that wasn’t the hand she was dealt. So why not turn lemons into lemonade? If she were to become a supermodel, no one would give a shit if she were as tall as a Christmas tree and just as colorful. She’d be idolized, and the paparazzi would stalk her on her way to and from work, thinking she was doing them a favor by letting them take a photo. Maybe then Luca might think of her as more than Chip’s baby sister. She wasn’t sure when her feelings for her brother’s best friend had begun to change, but they sure as heck had shifted in the last few months. In the past Luca had simply been a part of the landscape. Now he was the main reason she hung around the football field. A smile in her direction made her tummy flop, and the urge to cross her legs and squeeze was also new and unexpected. Suddenly Luca had a leading role in all of her daydreams.
She could be his Gisele Bündchen. He’d be the next Tom Brady. They’d date; she’d perfect her blowjob skills to hold him off until the wedding and send him topless selfies to keep him happy. Instead of real sex, she’d turn into his gorgeous slirgin, the slutty virgin girlfriend he could fantasize about while jerking off. Finally, he’d cave and propose, and after the biggest, most elaborate wedding in the universe, he’d whisk her off in his private jet to an island somewhere in the Caribbean. Then he’d peel off the beautiful designer blouse, suck on her man-made boobs, and tell her she was the most desirable woman in the world. He’d carry her to bed, the one on the raised dais draped with mosquito netting like the kind she saw on a Sandals Resort commercial. He’d call her his glorious Amazon, his warrior queen, his incredible woman, and then he’d take off her pants—and the fairy tale would turn into a nightmare.
Luca would hack her into pieces, and no jury on earth would convict him. How could they? Seeing a dick when expecting a regular hoo-ha was just cause for murder.