Weekend Excerpt–FREE Anthology

Is it hot enough for you?

This summer, a dozen of the hottest authors of BDSM romance are joining forces to offer you a collection of their first-in-series books for FREE.

You heard me right, you can own the first books in 12 HOT BDSM series by:

C.P. Mandara
Felicity Brandon
Golden Angel
Kallypso Masters
Lilah E. Noir
Linzi Basset
Nia Farrell
Normandie Alleman
Pandora Spocks
Ree L. Diehl
Renee Rose
Skye Callahan

But there’s a catch. A TASTE OF SUBMISSION goes away at the end of summer. August 31, 2019 is the last day the boxed set will be available. Be sure to get yours before it’s gone.

My contribution to this collection is LUKE & BELLA, Dream Dominant Book 1. Here’s a steamy little sample.

Bella padded out into the sitting room in her pajamas, a thin black tank with pink bottoms.  Looking down, she realized she wouldn’t feel comfortable dressed this way if Luke came in, so she went back for a bathrobe.  Still hot from the bath, however, she draped the robe over a chair thinking she could grab it when she heard the door.  If, that is, I’m still up when he comes back, she considered.

She poured another glass of wine and wandered to the french doors, watching as lightning streaked across the sky, occasionally replacing the warm glow of the firelight that filled the suite with flashes of cold blue.  Large raindrops peppered the glass as the wind whipped the hotel, Edinburgh castle lit up and barely visible in the distance.  It’s such a lovely place, Bella thought.  Such a cozy night.  I could curl up now and fall asleep to the sound of the storm.

Instead, she sat on the floor in front of the fire, laptop before her.  Luke had dumped the raw video and created folders on the desktop.  She perused them one by one.  Airport, Ailsa, McTavish’s, Distillery…Hmmm…Let’s start at the end and go backwards, she decided.  Distillery it is.

She was completely engrossed in the video of their lunch with Nevin and Maw when Luke suddenly burst through the door.  Every molecule of her body went rigid and a strange gasping scream rolled up from her toes.

“Jesus H., McGillicutty!” she exclaimed, jumping up.  “You scared the shit out of me!”

He started to reply and couldn’t.  For a moment all he could do was stare.  She was dressed in a black tank top with pink pajama bottoms.  And, he noticed, she wasn’t wearing a bra, erect nipples pointing toward the ceiling.  Probably had something to do with being startled out of her skin, he realized.  She’d been working on the computer.  There was a glass of wine next to her.

“Are you ok?” she asked, more softly.  She flushed, understanding the focus of his gaze and belatedly she realized she’d left the robe on the other side of the room.

“Um, yeah,” he answered.  “I was just ready to come back.  Is there more wine?”

“Sure,” she answered gently, “but you’re absolutely drenched.  I’ll get you a towel.”  Her robe was on a chair next to the bedroom door, but the wine made her feel bold, so she ignored it.  Let him look, she thought, and she felt her nipples harden again at the idea.

Bella returned with a fluffy white towel from the bathroom.  “You’re dripping water everywhere,” she observed quietly as she handed him the towel.

“Sorry,” he whispered.

She shrugged.  “Not my floor,” she replied.  “I can hang your shirt over the shower,” she offered.

Luke pulled the buttoned chambray shirt over his head, the way men so often do.  Bella shook her head.  Why don’t they ever use the buttons? she wondered irritably.  He handed her the shirt, murmuring his thanks, and began to dry off using the towel.  She eyed his muscular shoulders and broad chest, appreciating the fact that the latter was dusted with salt and pepper hair, oddly enough white on the left side, black on the right, with a black line trailing down his toned abs toward…  Focus, girlfriend, she scolded herself.

When she returned from hanging his shirt, he’d finished toweling off and had draped the towel around the back of his neck.  Bella poured him a glass of wine and topped off her own as well.  Turning, she walked to him and handed him his glass of wine.  “What’s going on, Cowboy?” she asked.  He looked at her, startled.  “I’ve heard you call yourself that.  I like it,” she shrugged, replying to his unasked question.

“Like I said, I was ready to be back,” he explained.  “The pub was noisy and I was tired.  How’s the footage?” he asked, steeling himself for her reaction.

“Great!” she answered, smiling.  “Beyond great, actually.  I was already happy with the content, but Luke, the lighting, the angles, the composition…You have an amazing eye.”

Luke couldn’t believe his good luck; she hadn’t seen his video from the airport.  He sipped his wine and watched her looking at him, concern still showing on her face.  He gently touched her arm, lightly stroking from her shoulder to her elbow.  Bella felt electricity ripple through her body and she stopped breathing.

“I missed you,” he said simply.

After a beat, she recovered enough to try to make light of his words.  “Missed me?” she laughed lightly.  “You were gone for a couple of hours.”  Nervously, she turned and moved to the french doors again, the better to watch the storm and get a little space.

Towel still hanging around his neck, Luke followed her to the window and stood behind her, looking over her head and out at the storm.  He gently placed his hands on her shoulders and she stilled breathlessly.  Leaning down, he caressed her right shoulder with his lips.  “Bella,” he whispered, and he turned her to face him.

She looked up at him, breath ragged.  He moved his hand to lightly stroke her jaw line with his thumb.  “I missed you,” he said again, his eyes dark.  He traced her lips with his index finger and Bella struggled to catch her breath.  “I want to kiss you,” he said.  “Would that be okay?”  Bella, brown eyes wide, could only nod assent.

Luke leaned in to her slowly; it seemed like it took a week for him to reach her, and then his lips were on hers, gently at first and then more intense, more demanding.  She wrapped her arms around his neck, her kiss matching the fervor of his.  He held her waist, slowly moving his hands down to cup her ass, pulling her in to him.

Luke moved his right hand up until it cupped her left breast and she moaned into his kiss.  Then he brushed her nipple with his thumb, causing her to gasp.  “I want you,” he breathed into her ear.

Bella leaned back and looked at him, eyes shining with desire, her heart pounding.  She buried her hands in the hair on his chest, then looked back up at him again.  Luke tugged at the front of her tank top, pulling it down to expose her left breast with its hard pink nipple and he covered it with his mouth, licking and suckling hard.  She arched her back forcing her breast closer to him.

“Oh, God, Cowboy!” she breathed.  “Please…”

He looked up at her and grinned.  “Please what?” he teased.

“Oh, please…” she managed.

He gripped her shirt by the bottom and pulled it over her head, standing back to admire her.  “Jesus, Bella,” he breathed, taking in the sight of her before he wrapped her in his arms again.

He lay her gently on the floor in front of the fire.  “Put your arms over your head,” he whispered, and she complied.  Lightly, he brushed her body with his fingertips starting at her hands, then down her arms and across her breasts, down her stomach…He paused at the pajama pants, then slid his hand over the mound between her thighs, caressing through the fabric.  She bucked and brought her hands down to his shoulders, but he took them lightly and replaced them over her head.

“Shh, be still,” he whispered.  Gently, he tugged at the pajama pants and pulled them down and off, panties and all, so that she lay naked before him, firelight reflecting off her body.

“Seems to me you’re way overdressed, Cowboy,” Bella said, gazing up at him, her voice husky.

“We’ll fix that,” he grinned as he unbuckled his belt, undid his khakis, and stepped out of them, revealing black boxer briefs containing an impressive erection.  Bella chewed her lower lip in anticipation.  Luke knelt over her, leaning down to kiss her, and then stretched out beside her, head propped up on his left elbow, allowing his right hand explore her form.

“I want to touch you,” she breathed.  He nodded so she brought her hands down, first running her fingers through the hair on his chest before coming to rest on his hard sex.

He closed his eyes and moaned with pleasure.  “Oh, baby, you’ve got to stop or this will be over way too fast.”  Removing her hand, he reached to stroke between her legs, caressing and circling before sliding a finger inside.  Bella buck and gasped, almost coming right there.

“Well, well, m’lady, you seem to be ready for me,” he whispered.

“Please Cowboy, I want you,” she begged.

Luke pushed himself up over her, shimmying out of his boxer briefs.  “As m’lady wishes,” he breathed into her ear, and he began stroking her soft folds with himself before pushing inside.    Her center was warm and wet and the pleasure was intoxicating.

He felt Bella grip him and she began to rock her hips up and down, matching his rhythm and increasing with his intensity.

“It’s okay, baby girl, let it go,” Luke whispered.  And she did.

“Oh, Cowboy!” she cried as she shuddered, gasping.

He was close behind her, his own ecstasy tearing through him like a freight train. “Fuck!  Bella!” he gasped and then collapsed beside her.

LUKE & BELLS by Pandora Spocks

Hurry! Get ATOS for FREE
while it’s still available: books2read.com/SummerATOS

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Weekend Excerpt–HUNTER’S PRIDE

HUNTER’S PRIDE is OUT!

Redheads & Ranchers Book 2 is the story of corporate lawyer Poppy Chastain. Sent by her New York real estate development firm to Idaho, her mission is to convince fifth-generation cattle rancher Hunter McFall to sell a parcel of his ranch so Slade & Howell can put in an access road to the mountain property they plan on turning into a luxury resort.

Hunter will never agree to sell his land, but when he meets Poppy, he wants to show her exactly why he won’t. Somewhere along the way, they discover an explosive chemistry they never expected.

But behind the scenes, Slade & Howell is making plans to gain Hunter’s land by any means necessary. Can Hunter and Poppy’s love survive?

Here’s a teaser from HUNTER’S PRIDE:

Back at the ranch, Poppy took advantage of the huge master shower while Hunter saw to a few ranch matters that needed his attention.  Afterward, while he cleaned up for dinner, Poppy took care of some emails that had come in during their ride in the mountains. 

When they were both ready, Poppy insisted on stopping at the barn to see how the mother and calf were getting along.  Which was swimmingly.  Hunter commented that they’d be ready to join the rest of the herd in the next day or so.  Poppy snapped a few pictures then took Hunter’s hand and the pair headed for his big black Expedition. 

Country music played quietly in the background on the half-hour ride into McFall.  By the time they drove into town, the sun had set.  The parking lot at the North Star was about half-full.  Hunter managed to find a spot near the end of the first row.

“Hang on,” he said as he turned off the ignition.  “I’ll get your door.”

Poppy smiled to herself as she watched him walk around the SUV.  Hunter was always handsome.  Whether he was rain-soaked or working in the barn or naked by the fire, he was undeniably hot.  But tonight, in his dark jeans and white dress shirt, he was sex on legs.  She was suddenly ready to be back at the ranch.

As he opened her door, he smirked at her knowingly and briefly, she wondered if he could read her thoughts.

“You look amazing,” he said, holding her hand and helping her step out of the truck.

Poppy laughed lightly.  “You’ve seen this skirt and blouse before.  I wore it the first day I was here.”

“I’ve seen everything,” he murmured, his voice low and sexy.  “It’s still amazing.”

She rolled her eyes and blushed.  “Well, you look pretty hot yourself.”

He grinned at her.  “Do you think so?  I clean up okay?”

He held open the door, and she walked into the bar.  The place was fairly busy for a Thursday, and heads swiveled as Hunter followed closely behind her, directing her to the same booth they’d sat in her first night in town.  Starla nodded at them from her post behind the bar.  Classic rock served as a background for the buzz of conversation, occasionally punctuated by the clack of billiard balls on the other side of the room.

A young brunette approached them with a pair of menus.  “Hey, Hunter.”

He smiled at her.  “Hey, Lynnette.  How’s school?”

“Aw, you know.  I’m glad to be home for the summer.  Can I get you something to drink?”

“Let’s start with a couple of Jamesons, neat.  We’ll figure out what else we want.”

The server nodded.  “You’ve got it.”

“Jamesons?” Poppy asked as the girl walked away.

Hunter’s grin was boyish.  “Thought I might get you all liquored up so I can have my way with you later.”

“No liquor required for that. And I was figuring on having my way with you.”  She arched an eyebrow in challenge.

“Hot damn,” he breathed. 

Grinning, Poppy tried to ignore the curious stares of the good citizens of McFall as she perused the menu. 

Hunter, however, commented on it.  “Ever feel like you were in a damn fishbowl?”

“I wasn’t going to say anything, but, yeah, it’s a little uncomfortable.”

Hunter pursed his lips and shrugged slightly.  “I haven’t really brought a date here before. Not since Tara died, anyway.  I suppose folks are just curious.”

Poppy’s heart skipped a beat as she remembered her morning in Hunter’s office.  “That reminds me–”

The server’s voice startled her.  “Here you go.  Two Jamesons, neat.”  She placed the glasses in front of them.  “Are you ready to order?” 

Hunter looked to Poppy.  “Do you know what you want?”

She nodded.  “I’ll have the cheeseburger, medium-well, with swiss.”

“And for you?” the girl turned to Hunter.

He nodded.  “I’ll have the same.”

Feeling slightly shaky, Poppy sipped her whiskey, appreciating the burn as it trickled down the inside of her chest.

“You started to say something when Lynnette interrupted.”  He leaned forward on his forearms and watched her steadily.

“I almost forgot.  I meant to tell you something.”  She glanced up at him, breathing deeply as she tried to quell a slight tremble of nerves in her stomach.

“This morning, I opened your desk drawer looking for a notepad, and I found your wedding photo.  I didn’t mean to snoop, honestly, I didn’t.  I’m very sorry for invading your space like that.”

Hunter shrugged lightly.  “I told you to think of my office as your own.  You’re welcome to use anything you like.  Including anything you need out of the desk.  You don’t have to apologize.”

“I feel like I intruded, and I’m sorry.”  She risked a look in his direction.  “It was a beautiful photograph.”

He sipped his whiskey and stared down at the table.  “It was a beautiful day.”  He looked back up at her.  “That was almost ten years ago.”

Curiosity overwhelming her, Poppy decided to press forward.  “How did you two meet?”

Hunter gazed out across the room and sighed.  “We met at a bar.  Which isn’t as lame as it sounds.  I was dating a friend of hers, and a group of us had gotten together to hear a band down in Ketchum.  She was visiting from California.  We just clicked.”

Now that the door was open, Poppy had to walk through.  “And she was a redhead.”

“She was.”

When he didn’t say anything more, she fidgeted with the edge of her napkin.  She had so many more questions, but the topic seemed to have dead-ended.  She sighed softly.  “Well, anyway, I’m sorry for getting into your personal business.”

“Hey.”  His voice was soft as he reached across the table.  She took his hand and squeezed it affectionately.   “My life is an open book.  Ask me about anything you like.  And I mean it when I say consider the ranch your home.  Use anything you need.  Open any drawers you like.”

Wide-eyed, Poppy regarded him for a moment.  “When she died, you must have been devastated.”

Briefly, Hunter squeezed his eyes shut.  “I was.  I was a mess.  Losing Tara, losing the baby…”  He shook his head.  “I was useless for a while.  But then I realized that I wasn’t doing anybody any good wallowing in self-pity.  I sure as hell wasn’t honoring their memory.” 

He chuckled lightly.  “Could be it was Rolly’s boot up my ass that finally got me moving again.”

“You loved her.”  Poppy’s voice was soft.

He nodded.  “I did. With all my heart.  I didn’t think anybody would ever be able to fill that emptiness in me.” 

He smiled across the table at her.  “Then this prissy little big-city lawyer showed up in her fancy clothes and her designer shoes.”

Poppy frowned slightly and leaned forward.  “Prissy?  Who are you calling prissy?”

“You, Ms. P.K. Chastain.  If the cow poo shoe fits…”  He gave her a wink. 

She had to smile.  Elbow on the table, she rested her chin on her hand before she risked her most burning question.  “I look a little bit like her.  Is that weird?”

His sigh was deep.  “It’s true, you both have red hair.  But Tara’s eyes were light brown.  Yours are much darker.  And you have a completely different spirit, which to me makes you different as night and day.”

“How is my spirit different?”

He shrugged slightly.  “Tara was kind of…quiet.  She was calm, practical.  Predictable, maybe.” 

He met her gaze, his eyes sparkling with emotion.  “You’re bold and audacious and passionate.  You are your own unique self.”

Her brow furrowed.  “Is that good?

“I wouldn’t change a thing about you.”

Poppy flushed with pleasure.  “Well…good!  Because what you see is what you get.”

The thump of upbeat seventies rock shifted to a slower country song and Hunter slid out of the booth.  “Come on,” he said, holding out his hand to Poppy.

She glanced up at him.

He quirked an eyebrow.  “If they’re going to be talking about us anyway, might as well give’em something to say.  Dance with me.”

HUNTER’S PRIDE by Pandora Spocks

HUNTER’S PRIDE
is on sale now at your favorite online bookseller.
It’s even available in paperback.
books2read.com/HuntersPride

Weekend Excerpt–HUNTER’S PRIDE

Coming July 2!

HUNTER’S PRIDE, the second stand-alone novel in the Redheads & Ranchers Series, comes out Tuesday, July 2.

In the book, Poppy P.K. Chastain is a young, ambitious corporate attorney. She’s sent by her international real estate development company in New York to broker a deal with an Idaho cattle rancher for a small parcel of his property.

For Poppy, this is her chance to solidify her career with Slade & Howell. No more grunt work–she’s finally in the big leagues. All she has to do is convince Hunter McFall to sell a couple thousand acres so S&H can put in an access road to the luxury mountain resort they’re planning to build.

Hunter is having none of it. He doesn’t want a fancy resort trashing up the peaceful town named for his great-great grandfather. And he damn sure doesn’t want a road across his property. He’s prepared to say a flat NO when the development company’s lawyer comes out to the ranch to talk to him. He didn’t count on the pretty, spunky redhead.

Neither Poppy nor Hunter planned on falling in love, but their chemistry is undeniable. What they don’t know is that behind the scenes, there’s a scheme unfolding that will tear them apart. Is their passion real, or did Poppy play Hunter all along?

Here’s a new snippet from HUNTER’S PRIDE.

Golden sunlight streamed through the windows of the cabin, creating a brilliant space in stark contrast to the dark box from the previous night.  Hunter sighed to himself as he watched Poppy spoon another bite of oatmeal past her perfect lips.  She looked across the table at him and smiled softly.

 They were dressed in their clothes from the previous day, now dry thanks to the fire.  The only difference was that Poppy had added the flannel shirt over her white t-shirt, wearing it like an oversized jacket.

 Throughout the morning as they’d restored order to the cabin and made breakfast, they’d worked quietly, occasionally exchanging knowing glances and subdued smiles.

 Hunter sipped his coffee, and his mind drifted to the previous night.  After the blowjob that had to have registered on the Richter scale, they’d gone to bed, where they’d ended up making love twice more before finally succumbing to exhaustion.

 Mentally, he shook his head.  Five orgasms in one night.  That was far and away his all-time personal record.  And he’d seen to it that Poppy had enjoyed a few more than that.

 She met his eyes again and smiled.  A thought had been swirling around in his head since they’d lain breathless after that last time.  It was still there when he’d awakened, Poppy curled into him with her red hair framing her sleeping face.

 He hesitated, though.  Maybe she does this all the time, he thought.  The idea bothered him, but then, who was he to judge?  He had no kind of claim on her.  Three days ago, he’d assumed P.K. Chastain was a man.

 When she tilted her head curiously, he realized he’d been staring.

 “What’s up?” she smiled.

 He shook his head slightly.  “Nothing really.”

 Her eyes narrowed thoughtfully.  “You just seem to have something on your mind.”

 Stalling, he swiped a hand across his mouth and leaned forward on his elbows.  “I was just thinking…”  He frowned slightly.  “How much longer are you in Idaho?”

“I fly back to New York on Sunday.”

 He shifted his jaw.  Nothing ventured… 

“I was just thinking that maybe you might stay with me, at the ranch, rather than at the motel in town.”  He watched her closely.  “There’s a lot more I’d like to show you around here, and my house is a hell of a lot nicer than the Deer Creek Motor Lodge.  Plus…”  He trailed off.

 “Plus?”  Amusement twinkled in her eyes.

 He exhaled sharply.  “Plus, I think we’ve got an incredible connection.  I mean, I don’t know about you, but I don’t do this on a regular basis.”  He gestured toward the bed. 

Her eyes widened.  “I don’t do this on a regular basis,” she said.  “Are you asking if I do?”

 “No, God, no!  I didn’t mean to imply…  Shit.”  He ran a restless hand through his hair.  “I just mean that I feel like we have something here.  And for the first time in a long time, I’d like to explore it and see where it leads.”

 Feeling like he’d overstepped, he backtracked.  “Maybe you’re more comfortable in town.  I get it.  And I imagine you have work to do.  Don’t worry about it, it was just a random thought.”

 Wordlessly, Poppy pushed back from the table and came around to him.  She straddled his lap and took his hands in hers.

 “Hunter, I like you.  A lot.  All this,” she nodded her head toward the bed.  “That’s all you.  I’ve never had a night like last night.  Obviously, we have physical chemistry going on here, but I agree with you.”  She smiled up at him.  “I think it’s more than that.  And I’d love to see where it goes.”

 She kissed his cheek and slid off his lap.  “I didn’t want to complain, but the motel is a pit.  I’d lots rather stay with you.”

 He felt his lips curl in a guarded smile.  “Really?”

 Poppy nodded, a slight frown wrinkling her brow.  “I mean, it’s a little complicated, isn’t it?  I’m supposed to be negotiating an offer from my company.  But I suppose we’re still discussing it, right?  It wouldn’t do for the office to know that I’m staying with you, though.  It wouldn’t look very professional.”

 “Will it be a problem?”  For the first time, Hunter tried to factor Slade & Howell into the situation.

 She grinned mischievously.  “Not if they don’t know about it.”

 Suddenly, Hunter wanted nothing more than for Poppy to be with him at the ranch for the rest of her time in Idaho. 

“So, does that mean you’re staying with me?”  He stood and walked toward her.

“That’s exactly what that means,” she smiled.

 He released the breath he’d been holding as a smile spread across his face.  “Great!  Fantastic!”  He rested his hands on her hips and leaned down to press a kiss to her lips.  Reaching around his neck, Poppy steadied herself, tangling her fingers in his hair.

 Reluctantly, he ended the kiss, resting his forehead against hers.  “I’d better stop before we end up back in bed.  I’m already having a hard time walking today.”

 Poppy giggled.  “I’d never complain about being sore, as long as it’s for all the right reasons.”

HUNTER’S PRIDE by Pandora Spocks

Watch the official book trailer for HUNTER’S PRIDE.

HUNTER’S PRIDE
is out Tuesday, July 2.
Reserve your copy now: books2read.com/HuntersPride

Coming Soon–HUNTER’S PRIDE

What are you reading this summer? I have a suggestion–HUNTER’S PRIDE, Redheads & Ranchers Book 2.

Here’s the official blurb:

A handsome rancher with a tragic past,
determined to hang on to his inheritance.
A spunky young corporate lawyer

ready to make her mark in the world.
A sinister plot against them both.

Hunter McFall is a fifth-generation Idaho cattle rancher.  He’s been approached to sell a small fraction of his land to a big-city real estate developer.  Something he has no intention of doing.  He’s agreed to hear out the firm’s lawyer, but that’s the end of it.  To his surprise, it’s just the beginning.

Red-haired Manhattan business attorney Poppy Chastain is determined to make the most of her first opportunity to show her bosses what she can do.  Slade & Howell have sent her to the boondocks of Idaho to convince the hard-headed rancher to part with a tiny plot of his property.  She didn’t count on the sizzling attraction between them.

Together, they find a passion they weren’t even looking for.  But their love is threatened by a covert scheme to separate Hunter from his land by any means necessary.  When he finds out, he’s sure Poppy has played him for a fool.  Can she convince him otherwise, that what they’ve found is real?

If you love hot cowboys, sassy redheads, and steamy, romantic happily-ever-afters, you’ll love Hunter’s Pride.

One-click Hunter’s Pride now!

How about a little teaser?

By the time they finished eating and paid their tabs, Hunter was positive Poppy had to be feeling the effects of the alcohol.  But she seemed determined to press forward independently.

Together, they made their way to the door of the bar.  With all the noise and music inside, they had been blissfully unaware that a spring storm had rolled in.  Rain pouring down in buckets was punctuated by jagged flashes of lightning and the percussion of thunder rolling through the valley.

He’d already decided that he’d be making sure she got back to her room safely.  The storm just clinched the deal.  He could barely make out the lighted walkway of the motel through the torrents blowing across the highway in waves.

Beside him, she stared out into the storm.  “Well, shit!”

He rested a hand on the small of her back.  “Don’t worry.  I’ll take you back to the motel.”  He took a couple of steps.  “Stay right here.  I’ll get the truck.”  With that, he dashed out into the deluge.

When he pulled the huge black Expedition to the front door, he leaned over and pushed open the passenger door.  Poppy launched herself into the truck and slipped, falling headfirst over the center console, her face landing smack in his lap.

“Whoa, now!” he laughed.

She scrambled backward, nearly falling out of the truck.  “Um, sorry about that,” she gasped as she swung the door closed.

“It’s okay, just…get yourself settled.”

Sheepishly, she buckled herself in and clasped her hands in her lap.  “Okay, I’m settled.”

Suppressing a grin and mentally shaking his head, Hunter turned the truck and headed toward the highway. 

At this time of night in a town like McFall, there was no traffic to speak of.  Anyone not already home was currently parked in the lot in front of the North Star.  He paused anyway, peering through the rain in both directions before cutting across to the motel.

“Which room is yours?”

She pointed with an unsteady hand.  “Lucky number 7.”

He pulled into the space beside the Range Rover she’d driven out to the ranch.  “Hang on.”

Ducking, he hurried around and opened her door.  She accepted his hand and slid down, clutching her shoulder bag with the other hand.  Together, they dashed the ten feet to the covered walkway.

For a moment, they stood dripping, looking out into the rainy night.  Poppy fished the room key out of her bag.

“Well, thanks for the ride.”  She leaned down and closed one eye, her right hand weaving a bit as she aimed for the lock.

“Can I help?” he asked.

He took the key from her and unlocked the door, swinging it open.

“Thanks.  I would have gotten it.”

He tried to stop the smile.  “I know you would have.”

She peered up at him, red hair drenched from the rain.  He stepped closer, and she reached around his neck, pulling him to her, pressing her red lips to his.  Her intensity surprised him, but he wrapped his arms around her waist and pulled her closer, giving in to her passion.

Gradually, she loosened her hold, and he released her.  Gingerly, she touched her fingers to her lips.  “Sorry about that.  I’m a little drunk.”

“Not a problem.  But you should go inside now.”

She nodded slowly.  “Yeah.  Thanks for everything, Hunter.”

“You’re welcome.  Go on now.  We’ll talk tomorrow.”

She headed into the room and peeled off the cardigan, dropping it on the floor.  Then she gripped the bottom of the camisole and lifted it.  Hunter realized that with the drapes open, she was about to put on a show for the entire North Star Bar & Grill, assuming they could see through the rain.

“Hold up there,” he said, hurrying inside to draw the curtains.

Giving up on the camisole for the moment, Poppy sank onto the edge of the bed.  He squatted in front of her, taking her hands in his.

“I’m going to go now,” he said softly, “and I need you to lock the door behind me.  Okay?”

She blinked as she tried to focus on his face.  “Okay.”

“Okay, come with me,” he said, guiding her to the door.  “After I go out, you lock the door.”  Unable to resist, he pressed a light kiss to her forehead.  “I’ll call you tomorrow.”

He stepped out onto the sidewalk and pulled the door closed behind him, then stood listening.  “Poppy?”  He knocked lightly.  “Lock the door, hon.”

From the other side, he heard the click of the lock, then the rattle of the chain.  “Good girl.  Okay, we’ll talk tomorrow.  Good night.”

HUNTER’S PRIDE by Pandora Spocks

HUNTER’S PRIDE,
the second stand-alone contemporary
erotic romance novel in the
Redheads & Ranchers Series,
comes out July 2.
Reserve your copy now:
books2read.com/HuntersPride

Saturday Night Serenade–Winter Is Coming

According to reports, around a billion people are expected to tune into Sunday night’s premiere of the final season of HBO’s blockbuster series, Game of Thrones.  Mr. R and I will be two of those people.  If you’re a fan of the show, you know what I mean.

If you’re one of those who hasn’t seen a single second of the show, I get it.  Normally, I am that person.  The one who bucks the trend and avoids that which everyone else seems to obsess over.  I was that way about Breaking Bad, but I eventually saw the error of my ways.

I was also late to The Sopranos party.  I don’t think I saw a single episode until after the entire series was over.
Fun Fact: Mr. R and I are currently binge-watching The Sopranos for at least the second time, LOL.

When Game of Thrones was first coming out in the spring of 2011, I read a lot about it from a lot of different sources.  It really didn’t sound like my cup of tea.  An epic fantasy filled with kings, queens, knights, wars, dragons, etc?  On the other hand, did I want to miss getting in on the ground floor of the ‘next big thing’?  So I decided to watch the first episode.  Worst-case scenario, I waste an hour of my life.

But then I watched the opening sequence.  In seven minutes and twenty-two seconds, I was totally in.  I had no idea what was happening, but I was hooked.  Eventually after that first season, I went back and read the books.

Game of Thrones is based on A Song of Ice and Fire, an epic fantasy series of books by George R.R. Martin.  And he has worked closely with the creators of the show.  As a writer, I’m fascinated at Martin’s ability to create a whole world–no really, the books include maps, and the locations in the show are based on those maps.  He’s created characters that are rich and diverse and strong and flawed.  Dragons aside, for me it’s the human drama that makes the show the achievement that it is.

Westeros and beyond is populated with strong women, ruthless warriors, noble folk, and monsters of the human variety as well as the supernatural ones.  I was impressed by the fact that dwarf Tyrion Lannister (expertly played by the excellent Peter Dinklage) has a hugely prominent role.

Granted, the show is not for the squeamish–scenes of violence abound.  And there is quite a bit of sex as well.  These are not well-behaved characters, for the most part.  But I wonder if you might see a few things that ring familiar, as well.

Music plays a huge part in Game of Thrones.  In fact, it’s almost a character within itself, setting the mood, identifying the various families and banners.  The opening theme, A Song of Ice and Fire, is iconic, and for tonight’s serenade, I’ve included two versions.  The first one is an acoustic quartet, and the second is an entire orchestra featuring 2Cellos.

And…
If you’re still on the fence about Game of Thrones and haven’t seen a second of it…
Please grant me seven minutes and twenty-two seconds and watch the first sequence of Season 1 Episode 1.
Oh, and rule of thumb for watching GoT–don’t get too attached to anybody.  Just saying…  And be careful online–The internet is dark, and full of spoilers.

I hope you’re having a wonderful weekend.  Be sure to hug those you love.

Happy Saturday night!

Honoring Veterans

I’m thrilled to tell you about a great nonfiction book by my friend, author R. Grey Hoover.  KICKER is the true story of an often-overlooked part of World War II.  And in honor of Veterans Day, he’s giving it away for FREE!

Here’s the official description:

World War II is raging. A young father must choose between his family and duty to his country- a decision that could cost him everything.

Based on actual experiences of United States veterans and official military aviation history records from World War II, this is the thrilling story of a family’s journey into war. While his loved ones struggle with shortages and rationing at home, Sam endures relentless Japanese attacks against his unarmed aircraft over the treacherous mountains and torrid jungles of Asia. His job is to drop supplies to Merrill’s Marauders and over 750,000 allied soldiers fighting in the perilous jungles of Burma. If the enemy is not stopped, the American way of life will end.

If you like non-stop action with a touch of humor and romance and the chance to learn about the “forgotten front” of WWII, then this is the book for you.

How about an excerpt?

April 4, 1944 – Dinjan Airbase, India

Sam and Bobby Joe were totally exhausted when they crawled into their charpoys. The harrowing events of the day had taken its toll on them physically and mentally. In spite of the heat and noise of the jungle, Sam felt the blessed relief of sleep approaching soon after his head hit the pillow. However, as he drifted off, a feeling of unease came over him. It was a feeling that something was wrong, not here in India, but at home. He didn’t know if he felt uneasy because he still hadn’t received mail from home or because of some unknown reason, but the feeling stayed with him until he finally succumbed to his exhaustion and slipped into a deep sleep.

Thankfully, his slumber was not disturbed by his recurring nightmare, and he slept soundly until the wee hours of the morning when he suddenly awoke not knowing what had disturbed him. A light rain was falling outside, and except for an occasional flash of distant lightning, the basha was in total darkness. He lay very still, listening to the sounds around him. He strained his hearing, but no sound came except for the steady breathing of the sleeping men around him. After several minutes, he relaxed, thinking his imagination was playing tricks on him. He was almost asleep again when he thought he detected a faint unfamiliar sound coming from somewhere in the basha. Once again, he listened intently, not sure he had heard anything; but then he heard the sound again—only this time it seemed closer, and he was sure it came from within the basha. He couldn’t quite place the sound, but it seemed like something soft brushing against an object. He listened closely, but all was silent. None of the other men in the basha stirred, and after an extended period of silence, he relaxed once again in anticipation of sleep.

He was in that dreamy state just before slumber when he felt the presence of something or someone nearby. Once again, his senses came to full alert, and he made a conscious effort not to move. He listened carefully, bringing all his senses to bear. He could see or hear nothing, and yet he was sure something was there. He was startled when someone at the other end of the room moved, but then all was silent once again. He was lying on his back, so he slowly moved his head to the right and scanned the darkness.

At first he saw nothing, but then attention was drawn to a slight movement at the foot of his bed. He couldn’t make out what it was. It appeared to be an undistinguishable shadow against the darker background of the room. As he watched, the shadow moved, and he held his breath as it silently glided along the side of his bed. There was no sound as it moved, and it slowly drew nearer and stopped near the head of his bed. He could tell that it was something large, but due to the extreme darkness, he was unable to see what it was. His instincts told him this was something dangerous and evil, and the hairs on the nape of his neck stood erect. At that moment, a distant flash of lightning faintly illuminated the scene, and in that instant of light, Sam could see the large form of a tiger standing beside him.

The animal’s head was enormous. Its eyes, momentarily reflecting light from the faraway lightning, gave the beast an evil, devil-like appearance. This was death incarnate staring directly at him.

Sam was frozen with fear, and his heart seemed to stop. His .45-caliber pistol hung on the wall not three feet away, and he cursed himself for not keeping it inside the mosquito netting with him. He knew the tiger could see that he was awake, and he feared any movement would cause it to attack. The animal stepped closer, and Sam could see its dim outline and smell its damp fur and the fetid odor of its breath. The tiger appeared to know its victim was helpless. The great beast took its time as it sniffed the mosquito netting as if testing its strength. Slowly it raised a huge paw and placed it against the puny impediment. The tiger’s claws caught in the netting, and with a mighty swipe, it ripped the flimsy material away from the bed.

Download KICKER for FREE .

 

About R. Grey Hoover:

R. Grey Hoover is an Air Force veteran with a family tradition of military service that dates back to the American revolution. He wrote his book “Kicker the forgotten front” to honor his father and the other veterans of World War II who fought in the China-Burma-India (CBI) theatre.  During the war, the European and Pacific theatres got most of the supplies and media attention leaving the CBI theatre with the leftovers. Even in today’s media coverage of World War II the CBI theatre is never mentioned. The author’s book is an attempt to correct this gross oversight.

R. Grey Hoover’s social media links:
Website https://rgreyh.wordpress.com/
Twitter https://twitter.com/rgreyhoover
Facebook https://www.facebook.com/rgrey.hoover
Pinterest https://www.pinterest.com/rgreyhoover/

 

Saturday Night Serenade–Spooky

Halloween is just over two weeks away.  Time for it to get Spooky.  I couldn’t resist this classic from the Atlanta Rhythm Section.

This time of year, I’m dying to watch a good ‘dark and scary night in a spooky house’ kind of thing, and in the past couple of years, I haven’t had much luck finding something that fits the bill.  I’m not talking about a cheesy, slasher, ‘all the teens are gonna die’ movie–I’m looking for something smart and creepy.

Then I turned on Netflix last night and found this, their original series The Haunting of Hill House.  It’s based (loosely) on the 1959 classic horror novel by Shirley Jackson.  I watched the first two episodes last night, and it’s creepy as hell.  I’m in for the rest of the ride.

It’s just a thought if you’re looking for something Halloween-y to do tonight.  Gather with those you love, and I’d recommend leaving the lights on, just saying.  Be sure to give them a hug.

Happy Saturday night!

Bonus Track:  I couldn’t resist the divine Eagles with a live version of Witchy Woman.  Cheers to the late, great Glenn Frey.