Rhonda Shaw’s CAUGHT

Shannon strolled over to the shelves lining both sides of the fireplace to study all the awards and knickknacks on display. In the middle of huge silver bats, golden gloves and large plaques sat multiple baseballs and wood bats, some with writing on them and some not. She inspected each one, but didn’t touch in case they held value other
than personal.
Mattwalked over to her. “Checking out my stuff?”
“What’sall this?” she asked.
Pointingto the large silver bats, he said, “Those are Silver Slugger awards. They give those to best offensive player at each position.”
“You have four,” she pointed out.
“Yes,” he answered with a shy grin.
She counted the gold gloves. “And seven Golden Gloves?”
“Best defensive player at each position.”
“And you’ve won for catcher seven times.”
He nodded.
“Are you uncomfortable?” Shannon asked with a teasing smile.
He shrugged and shoved his hands in his pockets. “I don’t know. I don’t want to sound like I’m telling you how awesome I am or something because, you know…” He stopped and lifted his large shoulders again.
“But don’t these do that for you?” She waved her hand at them. “I mean, I’m assuming you don’t award these to yourself, and your teammates or whomever voted for you. So, not to stroke your ego or anything, but essentially they say that you are. Right?”
“I guess,” Matt mumbled and his cheeks reddened a bit.
She pointed to a large octagonal plaque. “What’s that one?”
He cleared his throat. “American League MVP.”
“Look at you. Most valuable player,” she teased.
“Okay, stop. You’re embarrassing me.” Matt pulled her to him and looped his arms around her waist.
Book three of Men of the
Shannon Morrison’s dreams
of becoming a lawyer are finally coming true. After landing a job at
a prestigious law firm in Chicago, she’s willing to sacrifice
everything, including putting her personal life on hold, as nothing
will stand in her way of making partner.  Nothing except perhaps
the gorgeous Detroit Rockets’ All-Star catcher, Matt Buck.
Just when he didn’t think
his luck would turn around, life finally throws Matt a fastball right
down the middle, reconnecting him with the one girl who has always
intrigued him.  As before, the timing isn’t right, but Matt
refuses to let this opportunity pass him by again.  He knows
Shannon’s career leaves little room for anything else in her life,
but he’s unwilling to give in and will do whatever he can to make
them work.
Together, Matt and Shannon
struggle through one hurdle after another, determined to find a way
to have everything they want.  Just when they’ve finally
figured it out, someone from Matt’s past shatters everything, and
leaves them both grappling to pick up the pieces…
Author Bio:
Rhonda owes her love of reading to her mother who would read to her each night before bed and sometimes give into her pleads for more than one chapter. These days, if Rhonda doesn’t have a book in her hands, it feels like something is missing. While romance is her true passion, Rhonda enjoys reading multiple genres.Born in California, but transplanted to the Midwest, Rhonda is warm weather girl to the bone (even years later, winter and her are not on speaking terms) and loves nothing more than a balmy, summer evening. She and her husband are diehard fans of pretty much all sports, but especially for their hometown Detroit teams. Rhonda received a bachelor’s in Human Resources Development and continued onto a master’s in Marriage and Family Counseling before making a drastic career switch into computer technology. She started out as a website developer and made her way up into management where she now spends most of her days in meetings. Rhonda was a life-long dancer before her body told her she needed to come down off her toes and wrap it up. She also loves all animals–especially moose. She is a proud member of Romance Writers of America.

Rhonda loves to hear from readers, so please visit her website. You can also find her on Facebook and Twitter.




Movement outside the exterior glass doors caught Cherry’s attention. “Mama mia, that’s some serious testosterone heading this way.”

What was it about men in tuxes, especially those who wore them as casually as they would their birthday suits? Primitive, instinctual, internal responses stirred to life inside her, whether she wanted them to or not. Down, girl. Something about the men, their presence, the way they walked, those amazing shoulders, told her these two would be comfortable in anything, but a suit would be their last choice. Nothing at all would be fine with her. But still, they didn’t fit in here. A ball game, yeah. A ballroom, no.

“I want the blond. You can have tall, dark, and spiky,” Tawny whispered before they reached hearing range.

It was good to know she wasn’t alone in her reaction, yet Cherry shook her head and mouthed “no thanks.”

“We could flip a coin. Rock, paper, scissors, Spock, lizard. Winner gets first choice.”

“You always cheat. Besides, I get the feeling with those two, there is no loser.” Pushing her inappropriate thoughts aside, Cherry slipped on her game face. “Welcome to the Providence West End Community Center Gala and Celebrity Auction. Can I have your names, please?”

“Valentine,” answered tall, dark, and spiky.


This sparkling debut dives right in to everything funny, flirty, and fiery about modern dating with the tale of a sexy singles auction that comes with the prize of a lifetime…

As far as Cherry Ryan is concerned, the bright lights of Hollywood are nothing but glare after her heart is broken on a reality show for millions to see. Instead she’s throwing herself into fundraising for the local community center that was a priceless lifeline to her as a kid. But when a volunteer for the singles auction bails at the last minute, Cherry finds herself on the block—and sold to Jason Valentine, a handsome contractor with a gorgeous body—and a really bad attitude about her days in the limelight…

Cherry soon finds that Jason’s more than eye candy, and not entirely sweet—especially his quest to win the bid for the center’s renovation. Mixing business with pleasure doesn’t seem like such a good idea—until Jason has a chance to reveal the big heart beneath his surly exterior. Cherry’s falling for him hard, but trust isn’t easy when you’ve been burned. To conquer her fears will take a giant leap of faith—straight into the spotlight again…


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Gail Chianese’s love of reading began at the tender age of three, when she’d make her grandpa read Fourteen Country Rabbits over and over and over again (and correct him when he skipped parts). While she’s branched out over the years by reading mystery, women’s fiction, and urban fantasy, she always circles back to romance in the end. That’s probably because she’s married to her real life hero. Her wonderful hubby has served in the US Navy for the past twenty two years and he’s done things he can’t tell her about. But it doesn’t stop her from being extremely proud of him and the sacrifices he makes for her, his family, and his country. He’s also uber-supportive of her dreams and of their three children. Living in Mystic, CT and a member of Connecticut Romance Writers of America, Gail loves to hear from readers. Visit her online at GailChianese.com, follow her on Twitter @Gail_Chianese, or send her an e mail at gail.chianese@yahoo.com.



Look, Josh. Let’s not start a fight over a little thing like trash. We’re all in the same lifeboat and we can’t be having people punching holes in the bottom of it.”

He started it.” Josh pointed at Conner.

The young man popped up out of his chair. “I can finish it.”

A hand gently pushed him back in his seat. “So can I.”

Greg King, South Cove police detective and my hunky boy toy, stood behind Conner. He caught my eye and winked. Then he went back to saving Josh’s life.

Man, I wasn’t going to hurt the dude. I’m not that type of guy.” Conner glowered at Josh. “He needs to stop putting his nose into things where it doesn’t belong.”

If you can’t calm down, you’ll have to leave.” Greg’s voice was calm, but his words hard.

Conner’s hands flew up in mock surrender. “Like I wanted to be at this stupid meeting in the first place. I just came for the paycheck, man.”

Greg stood back and let the tall, skinny artist stand up and step away from the table. Conner glanced at Sherry, who nodded some answer to an unspoken question.

This was curious. I didn’t think Conner even knew Sherry. And what did he mean by a paycheck? Maybe Conner didn’t own the gallery and his silent partner sent him to the Business-to-Business meeting this month.

Greg watched him leave the store, then slipped into Conner’s chair. He picked up the photocopied picture of the inside of the artist’s car, frowned, then folded the paper and slipped it in his front shirt pocket. Leaning over the table, I whispered, “What are you doing here?”

Confusion clouded his face, but he leaned toward me and tapped my hand with his. “I’m on the agenda, remember?”

Dressed to Kill

Jill Gardner—owner of Coffee, Books, and More in the tucked-away town of South Cove, California—is not particularly thrilled to be portraying a twenties flapper for the dinner theater murder mystery. Though it is for charity…

Of course everyone is expecting a “dead” body at the dress rehearsal…but this one isn’t acting! It turns out the main suspect is the late actor’s conniving girlfriend Sherry…who also happens to be the ex-wife of Jill’s main squeeze. Sherry is definitely a master manipulator…but is she a killer? Jill may discover the truth only when the curtain comes up on the final act…and by then, it may be far too late.

“Murder, dirty politics, pirate lore, and a hot police detective: Guidebook to Murder has it all! A cozy lover’s dream come true.” –Susan McBride, author of The Debutante Dropout Mysteries

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New York Times and USA Today best-selling author, Lynn Cahoon is an Idaho native. If you’d visit the town where she grew up, you’d understand why her mysteries and romance novels focus around the depth and experience of small town life. Currently, she’s living in a small historic town on the banks of the Mississippi river where her imagination tends to wander. She lives with her husband and two fur babies.


WICKED RIDE with Rebecca Zanetti



If you love the Dark Protectors, these wicked hot Realm Enforcers are for you!

Alexandra Monzelle is a hard-fighting, heat-packing Seattle vice cop, and she’s not much interested in being protected. Her short skirt and sex-kitten heels are tools to lure her suspects into talking about the deadly new drug hitting the streets. She can take care of herself and then some. Unfortunately, she can’t seem to get that through to Kellach Dunne.

Kellach is a fresh import from Dublin, and he’s landed at the heart of a vicious motorcycle club that deals in guns, narcotics, and mayhem. He’s all male, all rough power—and all interference in her damn investigation. Maybe he’s one of the good guys. Maybe not. Lex knows an affair with an immortal like him would risk everything. No matter how delicious he looks…


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 “Seattle PD. Freeze,” she whispered, her stance set, a Sig Subcompact in her hands and pointed at his head.Detective Alexandra Monzelle kept her balance on the ridiculous heels and her gun pointed at the definite threat.

Well over six feet tall, muscled, graceful as hell … the guy facing her showed no fear. No emotion, really. Black hair fell to his broad shoulders, the darkness a perfect match for his eyes. Chiseled face, huge-ass hands, and feet big enough to waterski on. Yet he moved with the smoothness of a trained soldier.

He lifted one dark eyebrow. “Seattle Police Department?” She nodded and tried to stop shaking from the chill in the air on her bare skin. Way too much bare skin, but she’d been undercover.

Get on your knees.”

Intrigue leaped into his glittering eyes. “Not garing ta happen.”

Was that a true Irish brogue? It fit him somehow. “I will shoot you.”

He shrugged a massive shoulder beneath a leather duster. “That’s your choice, lass.”

Did he just call her lass like some lady from a century ago? “Oh no, Irish boy. Get on your knees. Now.” She put every ounce of command she possessed into her voice.

Well now. At least you knew I was from Ireland. As opposed to Australia.”

Okay. She really didn’t want another body on her hands, but in the dress and heels, she was at a physical disadvantage. The last thing she needed was to spend all night filling out more paperwork than had already been created. “Down. Now.”

He cocked his head to one side. “I can’t help but ask where you were keeping your weapon.” His gaze, dark and intense, roved over her entire body.

Tingles. Damn weird and very unwelcome, tingles cascaded wherever his gaze landed. She might just have to shoot the bastard and fill out the paperwork anyway. “I don’t want to shoot you, but I can live with the decision. Get on your knees or say a quick prayer to your maker.”


Rebecca Zanetti is the author of over twenty-five dark paranormals, romantic suspense, and contemporary romances, and her books have appeared multiple times on the New York Times, USA Today, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and iBooks bestseller lists.  She lives in the wilds of the Pacific Northwest with her own Alpha hero, two kids, a couple of dogs, a crazy cat…and a huge extended family.  She believes strongly in luck, karma, and working her butt off…and she thinks one of the best things about being an author, unlike the lawyer she used to be, is that she can let the crazy out.  Her current series are: The Dark Protectors, The Maverick Montana Cowboys, and the Sin Brothers series.  Upcoming series are: The Realm Enforcers and The Scorpius Syndrome.  Find Rebecca at:  www.rebeccazanetti.com


Cate Beauman’s ANSWERS FOR JULIE & digital giveaway!

Award winning romantic suspense author Cate Beauman is back with the ninth full length novel in the Bodyguards of L.A. County series. Answers For Julie is on sale now through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, Kobo, and more!

Buy it now!

Julie Keller relishes the simple things: hot chocolate on winter nights, good friends she calls her family, and her laid-back career as a massage therapist and yoga instructor. Julie is content with her life until Chase Rider returns to Bakersfield.

Bodyguard Chase Rider isn’t thrilled to be back in the town where he spent his childhood summers. His beloved grandmother passed away, leaving him a house in need of major repairs. With a three-week timetable and a lot to do, he doesn’t have time for distractions. Then he bumps into Julie, the one woman he hoped never to see again. Chase tries to pretend Julie doesn’t exist, but ten years hasn’t diminished his attraction to the hazel-eyed stunner.

When a stranger grabs Julie’s arm at the grocery store—a woman who insists Julie’s life isn’t what it seems, Chase can’t help but get involved. Julie and Chase dig into a twenty-five-year-old mystery, unearthing more questions than answers. But the past is closer than they realize, and the consequences of the truth have the potential to be deadly.

The inspiration behind Answers For Julie:

I often get my story ideas from watching crime documentaries, but the plot for Answers For Julie came together after I read some sobering FBI statistics in a magazine about the odds of a missing child coming home. Unfortunately, many children are lost forever. The wheels began spinning quickly after that, and a few weeks later, the story was well on its way.

I hope you enjoy Julie and Chase as much as I enjoyed writing them!

~ Cate

Read an excerpt from Answers For Julie:

“Good night.” She turned on her side as Becky left and snuggled into her covers, listening to the music from downstairs while she stared at the white lights twinkling on the baby Christmas tree she and mommy had decorated for her room. Noah’s excited voice carried from his room, and her eyes drooped in the warmth and comfort of her bed. Her mind drifted to the Grinch and Cindy Lou Who, and her eyes flew open when her bedroom door creaked shut. She didn’t like her door closed.

Sitting up, Alyson relaxed when she realized she wasn’t alone and looked at the woman dressed in a black coat and hat, Becky’s friend who liked to come and play with her and push her on the swings at the park.

“Hi, Ally,” she whispered, stepping farther in the room, looking over her shoulder.

“Hi.” She yawned. “Did you come to play with me?”

“Whisper,” the woman said, glancing over her shoulder again.

She smiled. “Okay.”

“Do you want to come with me? We could go to the park.”

Alyson glanced out the window at fat snowflakes falling in the dark, pushed off her covers, and stood. “I have to ask my mommy.”

“She said it’s okay, but we have to hurry and be very, very quiet.” The woman moved to the bed, grabbed two teddy bears and laid them down, pulling the blankets up and over the stuffed animals. “It’s a secret game.”

Becky and Noah’s voices were muffled through the wall, and Alyson pressed her hand to her mouth, suppressing a giggle. “I like secret games.”

“Me too. Come on.” The woman took something from her pocket with gloved hands and unfolded it, laying a piece of paper flat at the foot of the bed.

“What’s that?”

“A note so your mommy will remember I took you to the park.”

“I only want to play for a little while. I’m going to see Santa with mommy and Noah.”

“Just for a little bit,” the woman assured with a smile. “Let’s hurry.” She lifted Alyson and bundled her under the pink and purple blanket Grandma Porter made for her when she had been a teeny, tiny baby.

“I need my boots and coat.”

“I have some for you at my house.”


The woman walked to the bedroom door and stopped, holding a finger to her lips. “Shh.”

Alyson grinned and said “Shh” back.

The woman stepped into the hallway and out the French doors that opened to the large balcony Alyson and Noah weren’t allowed to play on and hurried down the long sweep of stairs.

Alyson clung tight to the woman taking her to the park. She stared back at her huge brick and pillar house lit with hundreds of Christmas lights as Becky’s friend ran with her into the shadows of the street.

Did you enjoy the excerpt? You can read the first chapter on my website, www.catebeauman.com, or you can finish the whole book here!

The Unofficial Answers For Julie Soundtrack

Music still plays such a large part in my writing process. I listen to Pandora or YouTube and compile a collection of songs that I feel represent my characters or the situations they face as the novel unfolds. Here are a few of the songs that I had on “repeat” while I created Julie and Chase’s story! You can listen to all of them on my website www.catebeauman.com.

The soundtrack, of sorts, for Answers For Julie:

Leaving Home by Cody Fry and Raquel Cole

All The Stars by Ed Sheeran

Rust Or Gold by Jill Andrews

American Secrets by Parachute

Thinking Of You by Katy Perry

Battleship by Daughtry

Find My Way Back by Cody Fry

The Last Time by Taylor Swift ft. Gary Lightbody

Running Back To You by Matt Wertz

Ungodly Hour by The Fray

I Need You by LeAnn Rimes

Free Like You Make Me by The Cary

If you had to choose one of the above songs as your theme song, which would it be and why? One (1) lucky commenter will win an ecopy of ANSWERS FOR JULIE. 


Cate currently lives in North Carolina with her husband, their two boys, and St. Bernard’s, Bear and Jack. She is the author of the international bestselling and award winning romantic suspense series, Bodyguards of L.A. County. Before her career as an author, Cate worked in special education for 12 years.

“I’m a pretty lucky girl; one day I woke up and my entire life changed. I saw the light, so to speak, and decided I was going to be a writer. Now, five years later, I’m working on my tenth novel! I remain so very grateful for the support and success that I have had. Thank you!” – Cate


Contact Cate

Amazon Author Page


Social links:

Twitter: @CateBeauman




Elodie Parkes & A DOM FOR PATTI



When a fleeting encounter with a handsome stranger ignites Patti’s repressed loneliness, she has to admit she longs for the love of a sensual Dom.

Luck is on her side when she goes out for the evening, and meets delicious Cameron in The Club—but is he all that he appears to be?

Cameron’s overwhelming attraction to Patti is tested when she inexplicably fails to show up for a date—just what is going on and will they ever get together?

An erotic romance, with Dom/sub and spanking elements—a contemporary, magical love story.


Background to the story


I wrote a story titled Rescuing Cade published by Evernight in February this year. In that story, Patti, the heroine from a Dom for Patti, is introduced to Cade. They are both visiting The Club, a select BDSM club. Cade is kind to Patti, but his heart already belongs to someone else and after only a few minutes he tells Patti he’s leaving. In that few minutes, he kisses Patti and she feels an instant attraction to him. Unfortunately, lonely Patti is destined not to be with Cade.

I liked Patti a lot and I decided to write her story. It’s an erotic romance with a twist. Patti is hoping for love as well as a handsome Dom to fill her lonely life, when she meets hunky Cameron in The Club, she thinks her luck is looking up … let’s hope so.


Read a story excerpt:

The darkness soothed Patti. The music lifted her spirits and she smiled at the lovely sight of people enjoying each other. She relaxed in the familiar atmosphere and began to wonder why she’d denied herself this pleasure for so long. Happy now, she wandered along to the bar and ordered coffee.

Patti spent a pleasant ten minutes drinking her coffee and talking with the bartender, before a man and woman she’d seen around The Club in the past arrived at the bar. Patti cast a sidelong glance at them before transferring her scrutiny to watching their touches and kisses through the length of mirror along the back of the bar. They were obviously a couple. More than that, they were obviously in love.

Patti left the sight that reminded her of what she desperately wanted and walked along to the end of the room. She stopped in the gloom there and considered going home. She’d shaken her depression and maybe on her next visit she’d find one of the Masters free.

About to move off, instead, Patti turned abruptly. Someone approached from behind and she was suddenly aware she lurked around in the entrance to the corridor that led to the private rooms.

He was closer than she’d anticipated. A hard muscular chest met her, and as she bumped against the man, his arms enclosed her.

Patti looked up into the face of a man she’d never seen before.

His eyes were dark in the gloom. He’d stopped further into the shadows, but the handsome planes of his face were still obvious. A dimple appeared in his left cheek as he smiled.

“Hey, are you okay? I didn’t mean to scare you.” He left his arms around her.

Patti soaked up the contact. She looked at him with interest. “I was deep in thought.”


ADomforPatti-evernightpublishing-jayAheer2015-banner1 - Copy

Copyright Elodie Parkes 2015 Evernight Publishing

Find Elodie on Manic Readers, Evernight and Amazon

S. J. Maylee’s TAKING OVER excerpt

Thank you so much for having me back at Manic Readers. I’m over the moon excited to talk about my brand new release and explain why I had to write this story.

Taking Over is the third book in the Love Projects Series. I worked hard and made sure this story is a standalone. You do not need to read books one and two. However, you will find special connections if you read them in order.

Taking Chances, Love Projects 1 (Jake & Lydia)

Taking Courage, Love Projects 2 (Simon & Janna)

Taking Over tells the story of Marcus and Gina. It’s the story I had to tell in many ways. I knew from day one there was more to Gina than she let others see. I wanted to explore the steps in her life that led her down the path to earning her mean girl status. The more I learned, the more I wanted to open another path for her to take.

Marcus stepped up big time in this story. There might have been a time in his life when he loved Gina more than anything else, but that time has come and gone. While Gina faces some of my worst fears, she struggles with wanting the easy route. It can be so simple to shut everyone out when we need them the most.

Love isn’t easy. It’s messy and it hurts when you lose it. Taking Over tells the story of love that was meant to be, but is now lost. I know love is worth the struggle it takes to grab it and hold on to it, but I needed to prove it to Gina. The result is an emotional sexy trip of raw emotions. I hope you take a chance on Gina and enjoy her wild ride.

Taking Over (Love Projects 3)

by: S.J. Maylee

Genre: Erotic Romance with D/s

Length: Novella

Published: June 10, 2015

Publisher: Evernight Publishing

ISBN: 978-1-77233-383-1



Gina’s life was perfect, until the day she realized the man she loved didn’t love her back. Her charming life turned upside down as tragedy and cruelty struck her down. She learned to protect her family from those who could cause them pain, but she inadvertently ensured the perfect life would be forever out of her reach.

Marcus has hid his love for Gina for years. His assumptions about her have allowed him to be harsh, but underneath all the anger is a man deeply in love. The tough realities of her life put them in position to see themselves in a whole new light. The second chance is right there and it could take them over the edge into the love they’ve always wanted.

Where you can find TAKING OVER:

Amazon | Evernight | All Romance Ebooks

This had to be a new record. In less than a minute, he had her loathing herself. It didn’t matter he was working on incorrect data. “Hope not to see you again.” She waved as she turned to go.


She kept moving.

His hand came down on her shoulder and pulled her around. “When a Master tells you to wait, you do as you’re told. Our personal history doesn’t erase protocol. Is that clear?”

Yes, Sir.” Her chest rubbed against his. From under her lashes, she looked up into his light blue eyes and, for a second, wished she could forget why she hated him.

I’m sorry.” He stepped back and let his hand fall. “You came to this area because you needed something from the benches. I’m the only one free right now.” He raised his hand and brushed away the hair hanging in front of her eyes. “I can give you what you need.”

Once again, Marcus showed himself as the good guy. She didn’t like him because he had a tendency to call her out on her mistakes and she was certain he thought her supposed latest was a doozy, since it ended her marriage.

That’s nice of you, but it’s okay.” She took a step back.

I can see that it’s not.” He took a step forward. “We can push past our history and live in this moment.” He grabbed her hand. “Let me help.”

Warmth gathered in her core. She’d seen this side of him, but they’d never scened together. She tilted her head to the side and examined him. The first time she gazed into his blue eyes, she knew he’d cause her problems. He could see the truth through all the mess, not that he ever tried to understand her. She didn’t want to know what he’d see if he ever took a closer look at her. Fear ticked up her spine. She had a feeling that he alone would be her undoing.

Desperate to let go, she knew the sting of a paddle was what she needed, but sometimes it was hard to separate feelings discovered at the spanking bench. She laughed out loud. Since there was no way she’d start to care about Marcus now, she decided to take him up on his offer. After all, she was determined to reach the kind of release only a good reddened ass could provide.

Thanks, Marcus.” She walked to the only free bench and bent over the apparatus, putting her forearms on the padded rests and grasped the holding bar. Her short skirt would already be giving him quite a show. For the first time, she wished the club allowed submissives to wear panties.

Since we’ve never played together, I won’t be restraining you. We certainly don’t have that kind of trust. You understand how important it is not to move, correct?”

Yes, Sir, I understand. I won’t move.” It pinched her last nerve to call him sir, but he was doing her a great service. For these few minutes, she’d give him the respect any Master in this club deserved.

He flipped her skirt up over her back, exposing her round ass. The paddle brushed over her lower back, across her hip, and down the length of her leg to her knee. His hand followed the paddle with a feather touch, allowing a soothing bliss to spread over her skin.

The room either quieted or she’d blocked out the noise but she welcomed the peace, needing to remember why she was there. He repeated the pattern on the other side, drawing her in with his tenderness. She swallowed against the unwelcomed thoughts threatening to break her concentration.

I’ll give you twenty swats. I expect you to count them.”

Okay. Thank you, Sir.”

The paddle rubbed over her right cheek and then smacked against it, rocking her whole body. The force behind the swat surprised her, this was not her first mistake. What had she been thinking? Submitting to Marcus was on her list of things to never try. She had to give him more credit. He’d caught her off her game.

We’ll start back at one each time you forget to count.” He smacked her other cheek.

One. Sorry, Sir.”

Not as sorry as your ass will be if you forget again.” He dragged the paddle along her skin in the same figure as before, spreading the sensitivity. “I have no problem paddling your ass all night.” He smacked her right cheek again.

Two…three…four.” Somewhere over the next couple of swats, Gina remembered why she’d come back into the club tonight. Her knuckles turned white with the force of her grip. She gulped in a breath of air and waited for the next hit to land with its punishing kiss of heat, but none came. Marcus stepped into her line of sight, just out of reach. The paddle was no longer in his hand.

I’ll keep counting, Sir. Please, I need this.”

He lowered himself beside her and reached out to caress her fingers until she released her strangle hold. “I’ll finish, after I’ve determined you’re in the right frame of mind.”


S.J. Maylee fell in love with storytelling at a young age and with it came a deep-seated desire for everyone to find their happily ever after. She’s finding the happy endings for her characters one steamy story at a time.

When she’s not reading or writing, you can find her caring for her garden, laughing with her two young sons, or dancing to her husband’s music. She’s a PMP (Project Management Professional), Nia instructor, and coffee addict.

As a writer she has a tendency to break hearts, but she always glues them back together.

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Introducing Rebecca E. Neely & A MIGHTY GOOD MAN

Today, Manic Readers is pleased to host author of romance with a punch of suspense, Rebecca E. Neely. She’s sharing about herself, her inspiration, some more about her debut novel, A Mighty Good Man, and her latest writing project.

Can you tell us a little more about yourself?

My roots are important to me, and I feel very blessed to have grown up in the close-knit, hard-working family I did, in a small town in Western Pennsylvania. My father was an English teacher, and he loved language and literature, and I grew up loving it too. My mother is also a voracious reader, and we read many of the same authors, including Clive Cussler, Nora Roberts and Agatha Christie. Short stories might be my favorite genre—some of my favorite authors are D.H. Lawrence, O’Henry, Poe, and Jack London.

I grew up in my family’s restaurant business, and at an early age, I was cooking, washing dishes, waitressing and handling money. It was an amazing opportunity—one that most children don’t have—to learn about business, to meet interesting people, both the customers and the employees, and to eat great homemade food!

I earned a B.S. in Accounting and worked in that field for over a decade. Accounting is very left-brained, and people are often surprised I’m now a writer—what many consider a ‘right-brained’ field. However, I believe the attention to detail required by that discipline has helped me to succeed in my writing career.

My father always had an entrepreneurial spirit, and I followed in his footsteps, starting my own freelancing business about fifteen years ago. In that span of time, I’ve had the pleasure of working with clients all over the country, and I’ve interviewed dozens of people who are passionate about what they do. That kind of energy is contagious. I’ve had the pleasure of speaking with vintners, casino executives, cedar harvesters and truck drivers, and owners of small and large business of every description. The stories they’ve shared will stay with me always. Still, I longed to create stories of my own, and in the last several years, I’ve focused more on writing fiction, specifically, romantic suspense.

I sold my first book, A Mighty Good Man, to Soul Mate Publishing last year. The journey has been incredible. I’ve met so many talented, generous people and learned so much, about my writing, and myself.

 What inspires you?

I find inspiration all around me—in the news, on social media, at work, at home, at the store, at the places I travel to with my family and friends. I find inspiration in people, those that are close to me, and in complete strangers, in the stories they tell, their triumphs, hardships, the gestures they use, the clothes they wear. I think there’s a lot to be said about finding inspiration in ‘every day-ness.’ If I’m feeling burned out, a trip to the craft store, and drinking in all those colors and textures and possibilities, feeds my right brain and my creative soul. Taking a walk somehow helps me work out problems I encounter in a storyline. I think the most important thing I can do to stay inspired, though, is to ‘show up.’ and that means sitting down at the keyboard and starting to work even if I’m not feeling particularly inspired, or tired, or whatever. Pretty soon, things start clicking. That’s when the magic happens.

 Are you working on anything new right now that you can share with us?

Yes! I’m thrilled to share that I’ve very recently signed a three book deal with Soul Mate Publishing for my Crossing Realms paranormal romance series. My first book, A Mighty Good Man, is a contemporary romance/romantic suspense novel. I wanted to write something completely different, and world building fit the bill. I got to work creating, and literally filled several notebooks with ideas, characters, and language, and the basis for Crossing Realms was born. An estimated release for The Keeper, Book One in the Crossing Realms series is late 2015/early 2016.

What have you learned along your writing journey? What advice can you share, and what is the best advice you’ve ever received?

Advice that’s helped me is to set daily writing goals, and word counts, if you really want to finish your book. Keep reading, and writing. Read new authors, or books outside your comfort zone. Write every day, to keep your imagination active and fertile. Spend time with other writers. Oh, and shut your smart phone off! The best advice I’ve ever heard might’ve been from my father, who told me you have to work at being happy. I find this applies in just about every area of my life.  

Without further ado………A MIGHTY GOOD MAN

Her personal and professional life on the skids, a family emergency forces writer Hank Jerry to return to the small town, and the aunt, she left behind.

Fresh out of prison, Jack “Gent” Darcy is bent on cutting ties with the Creds, but when you’re a war counselor in a national gang, they don’t let you just walk away.

Injured and on the run, Jack lands on Hank’s doorstep, and makes her a proposition she can’t refuse: write his story about life inside one of the most powerful gangs in the country. It’s simple – she’ll get her career groove back, and he’ll bury the gang, then disappear – his version of freedom.

Only problem is, they can’t help falling for each other, and they’ve both got something to hide that could blow up in their faces. With time running out and gang enforcers closing in, will the trust they’ve forged survive the ultimate test?

 Well, he’d wanted hidden, and now he was hidden. Her Aunt Henry would’ve done the same, she knew. Certainly the roundup of misfits who’d odd-jobbed their way through here over the years bore testament to that. If he needed a doctor, she’d see to it. But the police, and whoever was after him? That was his concern, not hers. Hank wanted no part of it.He could just park it in the cooler for a few minutes, stay out of sight while the help clocked in, and be on his merry way. She’d make sure of it.

Fists pounded on the door she’d just locked. She jerked to attention, pushing off the cooler. “Pretty sure that ain’t a Jehovah’s Witness,” she muttered. Shit! This wasn’t part of the deal. Now what?

The pounding continued. Whoever was on the other side wasn’t going away. If she didn’t answer the door it would only make things worse, most likely for her and ‘Cooler Man.’ Hank forced her feet to move. Act calm. Think calm.

Just in case that didn’t work, she unearthed the Smith & Wesson .32 revolver her aunt kept stashed in one of the utensil drawers, and shoved it in her pants pocket.

Adrenaline and fear pulsed through her, propelling her forward. One foot in front of the other. No big deal. She’d answer the door, see about the fist pounder and then he or she, or they, would leave. Or she could get shot. Yeah, right. No big deal.

Raised on a down home blend of Johnny Cash, Jack London, Sherlock Holmes, the Steelers, and all things small town, Rebecca feels blessed to have grown up in a close knit, fun loving and artistic family. Her mother, a voracious reader and scratch cook, and her father, an entrepreneur, English teacher and lover of literature, taught Rebecca and her brother to work hard, aim for the stars, and live life.

With music, books and laughter as constant companions, she grew up working, cooking and eating in the family’s restaurant business. A certified book and hoagie junkie, Rebecca thrives on live music, mysteries and the outdoors. She’s a cheddar enthusiast, and lover of cats, teddy bears, hot coffee, cold beer, thunderstorms, the blast of a train’s whistle, the change of seasons, country roads, woodpeckers, spoon rings, cool office supplies, and the Food Network.

She’s a sucker for a happy ending, and strives to write the kind of stories she loves to read—those featuring authentic, edgy and vulnerable characters, smack dab in the middle of action that explodes from page one.

Careers, past and present, include freelance writing, accounting, mother, problem solver, doer and head bottle washer.   

ONLY MARRIAGE WILL DO excerpt ~ Jenna Jaxon


Not every happy-ever-after begins at “I do.”

When the hero of her dreams rescues Lady Juliet Ferrers from the man claiming to be her husband, she is sure she has found her one true love. But is she free to marry him? Not to be deterred, Juliet arranges for her hero, Captain Amiable Dawson, to escort her to her family estate, hoping that along the way she can win his love.

Amiable is charmed by the sweet, beautiful woman he rescued, and although he has grave reservations about her marital status, he allows himself to be swept up into Juliet’s romantic spell and the promise of a happy-ever-after.

The spell breaks when legal questions arise and Juliet faces the horror of not knowing if she is married to her knight in shining armor or the cruel viscount who is determined to have her at any price.

Only Marriage Will Do Purchase Links

Amazon:   http://www.amazon.com/Only-Marriage-Will-House-Pleasure-ebook/dp/B00ONTR82M/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

 B & N:  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/only-marriage-will-do-jenna-jaxon/1120611643?ean=9781616506186


“I am afraid that is out of the question, St. Cyr.” Damn but he wanted to take the young fop by the seat of his satin breeches and throw him out the front door. “She is my wife and there’s the end of it. You have upset her enough for one day. I will thank you to leave.”

“Juliet, mon amour.” St. Cyr reverted to his native French. “You cannot have a serious regard for this monstrous oaf?” He raked Amiable contemptuously with his gaze. “He is a barbarian compared to me, my dear. I can make you forget him, forget any of his crude gestures of love. Do you remember our embrace? At the king’s Christmas court ball? Such a quaint custom of the mistletoe. You seemed to long for more than just my tongue that night, my sweet.”

“Philippe, please.” Juliet shrank from him, blushing until her face matched the hue of her dress.

“I fear you did not heed my words earlier, St. Cyr,” Amiable replied in flawless French, pulling his sword free. “You have just besmirched the honor of my wife and I will have satisfaction of you.”

“Jack, no.” Juliet pulled Amiable to a corner of the room and whispered, “Please do not engage him, sir. We can hardly have a scene here without…” She peered over her shoulder.

“You have no true reason to challenge him.”

“There you are wrong, my dear. Any gentleman has the duty to defend a lady’s honor.” He smiled at her, then turned back to St. Cyr. “May I suggest you apologize, my lord, unless you wish to meet me tomorrow morning?” He pointed his sword tip at St. Cyr’s mouth. “I will be much obliged to cut that offensive tongue out at your earliest convenience.” At last. Action he could take satisfaction in. He’d savor the anticipation of such a meeting.

St. Cyr paled a trifle as he looked from him to Juliet. “Forgive me, mon ange,” he addressed her, “for recalling our past intimacies. They should have remained in the memories of just us two.”

“Humph.” He stared hard at St. Cyr. Not the most contrite plea for forgiveness, but nothing more seemed forthcoming. Reluctantly, he executed a slight bow, acknowledged the dubious apology, and sheathed his blade.

“I have no such memories, Philippe.” Juliet spoke in French. “Nor do I want anything else from you except to be left alone.”

C’est impossible, chérie. We are man and wife. I will not leave you alone in the care of another man. I insist you accompany me back to my inn.” St. Cyr dove for her hand.

With a strangled cry, Juliet spun around to hide behind Amiable.

“By God, that is enough.” He’d make an end to the wretch this time. “There are laws in England that prevent men from forcing women to marry them.”

“The law says Juliet is already married to me,” St. Cyr said softly and drew a sheaf of papers from his jacket. He waved them at Amiable. “And only to me.”


Jenna Jaxon is a multi-published author of historical and contemporary romance. She has been reading and writing historical romance since she was a teenager. A romantic herself, she has always loved a dark side to the genre, a twist, suspense, a surprise. She tries to incorporate all of these elements into her own stories. She lives in Virginia with her family and a small menagerie of pets. When not reading or writing, she indulges her passion for the theatre, working with local theatres as a director. She often feels she is directing her characters on their own private stage.

Jenna is a PAN member of Romance Writers of America as well as President of Chesapeake Romance Writers, her local chapter of RWA. Her debut novel, Only Scandal Will Do, is the first in her House of Pleasure series, set in Georgian London. Only Marriage Will Do, the second book in the series, is set to release in June 2015 from Kensington. Her medieval serial novel, Time Enough to Love: Betrothal, Betrayal, and Beleaguered, is a Romeo & Juliet-esque tale, set at the time of the Black Death. The next book in that series, a short story called Beloveds, will release in May 2015.

She has equated her writing to an addiction to chocolate because once she starts she just can’t stop.

Find Jenna Jaxon online:

BLOG: https://jennajaxon.wordpress.com/

TWITTER: https://twitter.com/Jenna_Jaxon

FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Jenna-Jaxon/146857578723570



Perfectly Loved
Author: Rhana A. Gittens
Paperback: 212 pages
Publisher: NyreePress Publishing (October 22, 2014)
ISBN-10: 0990666239
ISBN-13: 978-0990666233
Genre: Inspirational/Christian Living


Rhana A. Gittens has a Bachelor of Science in Journalism and Masters of Business Administration from the University of Florida. She has a minor certificate in African-American studies and is an accomplished writing tutor. She was born in Queens, NY, raised in Lauderdale Lakes, FL and currently resides in Atlanta, GA.



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Love is one of the most consumed terms in the human language. It’s probably the most wrongly used word, but the word that is most necessary when used correctly. With an inaccurate definition of love we find ourselves searching for something to fulfill us, but in all of our searching we miss it. We miss it because unfortunately we don’t recognize that we are already perfectly loved. The problem is not the overuse of the word love. If it were up to God, we would use it at all times. The problem is, we say the word but don’t do any of the actions that come with its meaning. The problem is that we don’t know what God wanted it to mean, because we don’t give God the credit for the most amazing thing He ever created—LOVE!

​Perfectly Loved will bring us back to the understanding of love from the creator and embodiment of love Himself. Each chapter includes “Think About It” questions and a study verse that are perfect for individual study, Bible Study, and small group lessons. As you explore how God loves you, you will also build love in your relationships with other people, and God. When you discover “perfect love” you will be able to relinquish your fears, push through your adversity, and serve others with love.



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Everyone has at least one “what if”, no one is immune, especially in regards to relationships. Due to an accident, Jennifer Wright has a chance to experience what could have been if she’d chosen differently at three pivotal points in her life about three diverse men, Aidan, Tim, and Steve.

Travel along with Jennifer as she has her “what could have been’s” answered.

What an exciting opportunity it would be to experience what your life would have been had you chosen otherwise. Would you come out the other side appreciating what you have even more or regretting where your decisions led you? If the latter would you have the gumption to change it?

If you have trouble keeping up with stories that jump about in time you’ll want to set aside some time to devote to distraction free reading. However, the time shifts had headers and were easy to follow. Personally speaking, once started, IF YOU’RE NOT THE ONE was difficult to put down. Subtle character personality shifts and adapted events in Jennifer’s alternate lives makes each as believable as her present with Max, despite the reality of how they’re being lived. Best of all, this isn’t a rose colored glasses look at what may have been for Jennifer.

Frankly, I found it impossible not to consider my own personal might have been’s, however fleetingly, making IF YOU’RE NOT THE ONE an especially poignant reading experience. Though the premise might not be original I thought its presentation was provocative but the ingenious and completely unexpected ending was the five star clincher for me. Personally I keep waffling on whether a few more paragraphs, possibly a chapter, would have been preferred or not. Either way, I’ll be thinking about Jennifer and her future for quite a while.

Kudos, Ms. Forte.

NEVERWYLDE (The Rim of the World, Bk.I) ~ Linda Mooney

Neverwyle Purchase Link

Two species, bitter enemies, are determined to destroy each other, until they realize they need one another to survive a major catastrophe.

As they race through a nebulous space anomaly in the midst of battle, the Terrans and Seneecians are blown through a wormhole to crash land on an uncharted world. A half world. A world containing the remains of a long-dead civilization.

Lt. Kelen Chambliss knows she has no reason to trust the furred, humanoid creatures, but she and her crew members cannot survive without their help, and the Seneecians cannot survive without theirs. Neither can she ignore the fearsome-looking one called Kyber, with his wicked talons and piercing green eyes.

As they slowly come to realize there is no escape or forthcoming rescue from the barren planet, Kelen learns there is much about the enemy she never knew. Including the fact that Kyber’s formidable appearance hides a strong, brave, and caring heart.

Warning! Contains glowing glyphs, blue pancakes, eye worms, endless tunnels, and two people of different species daring to take their last and only chance at love.


The lights blinked again. This time, when they remained on, they were noticeably dimmer.

She peered back at the section of wall where Dox had been examining the glyphs. The jewel tones were barely distinguishable. One symbol in particular caught her eye. Door? Didn’t he say the green backwards check mark meant a door? Was it possible the engineer had opened a doorway and disappeared without anyone noticing?

She whirled around to mention it to the others, when the lights dimmed a third time, leaving them in semi-darkness.

Then everything went totally black.

“Don’t nobody move,” Dayall commanded. He fumbled at his belt for the tube light, turning it on. The beam struck the pile of bones, throwing eerie shadows across the walls.

She started to walk over to rejoin them, when a warm hand again touched her shoulder.

“Kelen, freeze.”

Her heart began thudding in her chest. Kyber’s voice had been low and terse, sending chills throughout her body. Her eyes remained riveted on the play of the beams as the three tube lights seemed to dance about the room, searching for the missing engineer. Kyber’s hand remained on her arm, giving her an unusual sense of security despite her growing fear.

“Back up. Slowly.” His murmur was barely audible.

Carefully, she lifted her foot, placing it behind her without making any undue noise, then then the other foot. She wanted to ask what had alarmed him. She needed to know to make sense of the trepidation attempting to overwhelm her.

“Hey! Did you see that?” Fullgrath called out.

“See what?” Mellori questioned.

A beam riveted on a section of the pile. “There. I thought I saw movement.”

The other two beams joined it.

Before anyone could comment again, the mound exploded outward.

Linda loves to write sensuously erotic romance with a fantasy, paranormal, or science fiction flair. Her technique is often described as being as visual as a motion picture or graphic novel.

A wife, mother, grandmother, and retired Kindergarten and music teacher, she lives in a small south Texas town near the Gulf coast where she delves into other worlds filled with daring exploits, adventure, and intense love.

She has numerous best sellers, including 10 consecutive #1s. In 2009, she was named Whiskey Creek Press Torrid’s Author of the Year, and her book MY STRENGTH, MY POWER, MY LOVE was named the 2009 WCPT Book of the Year. In 2011, her book LORD OF THUNDER was named the Epic Ebook “Eppie” Award Winner for Best Erotic Sci-Fi Romance.

In addition, she write naughty erotic romances under the name of Carolyn Gregg, and horror under the pseudonym of Gail Smith.

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