Woohoo!!! Welcome to my BIG Birthday Paperback Giveaway!
Since it’s November 16th, my birthday and I’m turning 32 I decided to do a BIG paperback giveaway and… you know a normal giveaway as well. LOL. And when I was trying to figure out what to do for my birthday I found out that my dear friend, Shae Connor, had a book releasing today, on my birthday. Then I found out that another friend, Piper Vaughn, had a book releasing today as well, with Kenzie Cade. So I decided to do a BIG paperback giveaway where I am giving away to ONE winner: 1 signed paperback copy of Nobody’s Son, 1 paperback copy of Prickly By Nature, 1 signed paperback copy of The Servant Duchess of Whitcomb, 1 signed paperback copy of The Alpha’s Beautiful Mate, and 1 signed paperback copy of The Alpha King, along with swag from Shae Connor and Vicktor Alexander, and a $32 Amazon GC. But the gifts don’t stop there!
To ONE winner: 1 ebook copy of Nobody’s Son, 1 ebook copy of Prickly By Nature, and 1 ebook copy of The Servant Duchess of Whitcomb-gifted to the winner either through Amazon or ARe.
So my assistant, Melissa Kleen, will be choosing a winner by the 19th from among those of you who leave a comment, share the blog post on Facebook and Twitter, and leave us the link in a comment also. So check out the excerpts from the books from Shae, Piper, and myself below and leave a comment so you can be entered to win.
by Shae Connor
Sequel to Wayward Son
Sons: Book Three
Who wouldn’t want a nice cup of tall, dark, and gorgeous? Shaun Rogers does. He’s working at the front desk of a clothing-optional gay resort when Conrad “Con” Brooks walks in. The sweet, funny, and smart IT guy is there to install a new network and security system, and sparks fly between the two men from the start. Trouble is, Shaun’s hiding his sexuality from his grandmother, the only family he has left, and that makes him reluctant to take the leap with Con.
Then a man claiming to be Shaun’s absent father shows up out of nowhere, throwing Shaun completely off balance. His life spiraling toward chaos, Shaun soon discovers that his “father” is hiding secrets of his own. When things come to a head between them, it’s Con who comes to Shaun’s rescue—but the incident could force Shaun into a decision he’s not sure he’s ready to make.
Excerpt from Nobody’s Son
“Have dinner with me tonight.”
Despite everything, Shaun’s immediate reaction was to say no. “Con—”
“It’s just dinner,” Con pointed out, his deep voice smooth and silky. “Not a lifetime commitment.”
Shaun flushed and dropped his gaze. “I know,” he murmured. “It’s just….”
He didn’t know how to finish that sentence. I’m not attracted to you would be a bald-faced lie. I’m straight would be too, even if he still couldn’t bring himself to admit to anything else out loud. Maybe I want it to be more than just dinner was probably closest to the truth, but they had to start somewhere, right?
Con waited, patient. It’s just dinner echoed in Shaun’s head.
“All right,” Shaun finally said. He lifted his head to meet Con’s gaze again. “Just dinner it is.”
“Just dinner” was good. Shortly after Shaun finished his shift at four, Con drove them the short distance down to Commerce and picked out a local bar and grill, nothing fancy. Their conversation over some pretty decent steaks and fries ranged from school to sports to music. Con had a computer science degree, no surprise, but Shaun hadn’t expected the master’s in information security. They both loved basketball, Con loyal to his alma mater, Georgia Tech, which was fine with Shaun, who supported Georgia State for the same reason but mostly cheered for whoever was playing against the University of Georgia. When it came to music, Shaun had a soft spot for his gran’s Motown favorites and the 1990s R&B his mother had preferred, and Con nodded approvingly at both.
By the time Con talked him into splitting one of the ridiculously huge, decadent, layers-of-chocolate desserts on the menu, Shaun had relaxed completely. All their “just dinner” talk aside, having dinner with someone when you knew you were both attracted to each other had to qualify as a date, even if nothing else came of it.
But it was fine. It didn’t matter that there was a man across the table from him. Yeah, they still couldn’t get into public displays of affection—not in a mostly rural area in the Deep South—but they didn’t need to. They could talk and laugh and share a gigantic slice of chocolate cake, and none of the rest of it mattered.
They continued chatting on the way back to the resort, Con asking how Shaun’s swimming had been going, Shaun telling him about taking a quick dip before work on Sunday and managing almost six full laps before his stroke faltered. But as Con pulled his car into a space next to his cabin, Shaun fell silent. His heart pounded, his skin flushed, and his palms went clammy.
Then Con touched his shoulder, one big hand gently turning Shaun to face him. “I know we said ‘just dinner,’” he said. “But—”
Shaun reached for Con with both hands and his mouth.
Con met him halfway.
Prickly By Nature
by Piper Vaughn & Kenzie Cade
Portland Pack Chronicles: Book Two
In the four months since hedgehog shifter Avery Babineaux started investigating the disappearance of a young female werewolf from the Portland Pack, he’s discovered his life’s passion. Now he’s apprenticing under established PI Corbin Reid. Avery hopes his training with Reid will help him finally bring Lacey home, but detective work isn’t without its perils, and the potential dangers strain his relationship with his new mate, Dylan.
Dylan Green would be perfectly content with his mating and his motorcycle shop if it wasn’t for his constant worry about Avery’s safety and the fact that Avery’s never home. Proud as he might be of Avery’s determination to prove his worth and fulfill his promise to Lacey’s father, Dylan can’t stand the thought of Avery being hurt. Yet what right does he have to demand Avery give up his job when it’s clear Avery’s found his true purpose? Still, Dylan wishes he could, and the appearance of a new police detective who sets his sights on Avery only adds to the tension.
Something has to give, but stubbornness runs in both their veins, and it might take a catastrophe for them to find a compromise they can live with.
Excerpt from Prickly By Nature:
RUNNING NAKED through the woods was exactly what Dylan Green needed. Thank the weather gods they’d held back the rain for the past few days. At least the ground was drier. Although wet forest floors didn’t matter to Dylan’s wolf. He was ready to stretch all four legs. It had been too long. Even longer since he’d run with his mate.
“Can you not get this heap to move any faster?” Avery practically vibrated off the seat next to him. Good thing he’d chosen the Firebird over his bike today.
“Hey now. Phoenix is not a heap.” Dylan patted the pristine dash, brushing over the treated wood with love. After glancing at the speedometer, he said, “We’re going the speed limit.” Which, yes, he knew was an anomaly for him, but only when he was on his bike. Phoenix required more finesse.
Before he could say anything else, Avery snorted and cut him off. “Phoenix?”
Unabashed, Dylan kept his focus on the road. “Firebird. Phoenix. Phe and I have been through a lot together. She’s pa—”
“Did you just nickname the car you call Phoenix? And dear God”—Dylan grinned at Avery’s pronunciation of God. It came out more like “Gawd.” He loved how Avery’s accent took over when he was teasing or passionate or angry—“please don’t tell me you’re about to say this mash of metal, oil, and leather is part of your family, our family. I do not, nor will I ever, claim a hunk of junk as a child. You can bet your ass I won’t be wiping its behind.”
That, in fact, was exactly what Dylan was going to say, but thinking about it at the moment, he had to admit how ridiculous it sounded out loud. Though he’d never say so to Avery.
Avery continued, “And let me guess, you talk to your baby.” Dylan could practically hear the giggle Avery was working so hard to suppress. “Does Phe talk back?”
The road up to Forest Park was narrow and curvy, so turning to look at Avery would have to wait. However, he did roll his eyes and reach over to pinch Avery’s thigh. “Don’t be ridiculous,” he said. “Cars don’t have verbal skills.” And, yes, he did talk to Phoenix, because until Avery came along, Phe had been the one thing in his life he’d pampered and taken care of that had never let him down. So what if he talked aimlessly to a vehicle? He’d worked hard to build her. That bond was unbreakable.
He thought of Avery, then amended himself. Almost unbreakable.
Phoenix was his baby. She had seen him through many tough times, and he had done the same for her, but there was no connection stronger than what linked Dylan and Avery. Sitting only inches away and not touching, Dylan still felt Avery like a second skin. So much so that, as he turned off the road to park near one of the forest trails, he felt Avery’s mirth in his bones. Without looking, he knew his mate would have a sparkle in his earthy hazel eyes and a smirk on the lips Dylan craved so much.
He even knew Avery would chuckle before he did, but that had more to do with knowing the man than an actual feeling.
“So what you’re saying is Phoenix doesn’t talk back when you ask how her day went?”
Dylan pulled into an available spot, turned off the engine, and opened his door. “You’re such a pain in the ass,” he replied with a wink and unfolded himself from the front seat.
“Aww”—Avery chased him from the car—“you say the nicest things.”
The brush of Avery’s palm over his ass had the ever-smoldering embers of need inside Dylan blazing to life, completely trumping the lighthearted teasing. How was it possible he wanted Avery more every day?
“You know,” Avery said in a low but conversational tone as they walked to where Lucas, Sawyer, and Kirk were parking their bikes, “I like it when you’re a pain in my ass. What do you say we blow this run and….” He trailed off, quirking his brow at the obvious.
Dylan groaned. Temptation had nothing on Avery Babineaux, and Dylan’s first instinct was to give in to the suggestion, but then he remembered why they were there in the first place.
In the months following Avery’s rescue from the warehouse and Melnyk’s entry into protective custody, Avery stayed true to his word. With help from one of Lucas’s ex-flings, Avery was currently a proud PI’s apprentice. It would still take months—many of them—for Avery to complete the hours of training needed to gain his own license, but he was well on his way. Corbin Reid, Lucas’s ex’s cousin, had taken Avery under his wing and in turn consumed most of his downtime. Dylan had only rare moments with his mate, depending on Avery’s busy work schedule—honeymoon phase or not. Visits to Wolfhound and even nightclubs with Avery were few and far between. Avery spent long hours immersing himself in the world of investigation and soaking up every little thing Reid was willing to teach. And when he wasn’t working, he was searching for Lacey.
By the time they’d broken the first link in the chain of the trafficking ring, Lacey had been missing four months. They had just crossed over into February, which made it six months, and from what they’d heard, the police were no closer to finding Lacey than Avery was. It didn’t help that Wallace, the shifter detective they’d been getting updates from, had gone silent once he transferred into the Human Trafficking Task Force.
While days turned into weeks and weeks into months, Avery hunted the dregs of every single lead he could scrounge up. Dylan watched helplessly as the effects of dead end after dead end weighed heavily on his mate. To say he felt useless was an understatement.
Then Mother Nature smiled down on them, with cloudless skies and sunshine in the middle of the wet season. It gave Dylan and Avery the opportunity for the one thing they both needed. Fun.
Dylan hadn’t enjoyed a run in weeks, and it had been longer since he’d played with Avery in the woods. A run was long overdue, and as great as a long hard fuck sounded right then, Dylan knew Avery’s hedgehog had to be aching for freedom too. Besides, having his mate naked and writhing under him was always a possibility when they got home.
Or in the car before they left the park. Dylan smiled, thankful he’d driven Phoenix, even on such a beautiful day. It was an inspired decision. He could definitely see some hot and dirty backseat action in his future.
Looking down, Dylan’s heart filled at the contented look on Avery’s face. All signs of worry and stress were vanquished for the moment. Dylan wondered, not for the first time, if they would ever have a break, ever have time to enjoy their new mating, or whether it would be a never-ending struggle, with outside forces constantly interfering.
“What?” Avery squinted, perplexed. Knowing Avery felt his concern warmed him.
Damn, Dylan didn’t think he’d ever get enough of his mate.
Avery’s nostrils flared, and Dylan knew he sensed his arousal as much as smelled it. He pulled Avery to him and brushed their lips together. As with most things between him and Avery, the kiss quickly deepened. Avery slipped his hand from Dylan’s hip to his chest and tweaked his nipple. Dylan groaned and pushed his tongue into Avery’s mouth, claiming what was already his. It was a battle of wills Dylan knew all too well as Avery’s perfectly orchestrated dance of want and desire balanced on a thin thread Dylan threatened to tear down each time. All of Avery’s taunting and flirting—it was foreplay, and Dylan could hardly wait for the fireworks. It was always worth the wait with Avery. Always.
“For the love of God, could you two get a room?” Lucas complained as he walked up. “Is it impossible to go five minutes without mauling each other?”
Dylan’s only response was a chuckle into Avery’s mouth as he pushed his fingers through Avery’s hair, holding him in place to prolong the kiss. He didn’t have to look to know Avery flipped off Lucas, mostly because he heard the laughter coming from their other friends.
When he pulled his mouth away, Dylan rested his forehead on Avery’s, breathing heavily. Christ, he loved the dazed, sated look Avery got when he was ready to drop to his knees, his cheeks flushed and his lips swollen. All because of Dylan. Maybe Dylan should kick his own ass for not taking Avery up on his offer.
With another groan, Dylan touched his lips to Avery’s again, then stepped back.
Avery blinked, then shook his head. He turned to Lucas and graced him with a playful smile. Uh-oh. “No need to be jealous, Lucas. There’s plenty to go around.”
The Servant Duchess of Whitcomb
by Vicktor Alexander
Scandalous Whispers of the Remmington Realm: Book Two
Orley Garrick is known throughout Angland not only as the man with two dukedoms but also as the hero who survived a brutal kidnapping at the hands of Nafoleon’s army, never once betraying the secrets of His Majesty. Still haunted by his memories, Orley pushes his crippled body to dangerous limits, all in an attempt to run from the demons of his past.
Until he meets Chester Boland, a maid in his friend’s household. Orley is besieged by desire for this gorgeous male woman, and by a connection he cannot ignore. But there are those within the Remmington Realm who take issue with the Duke’s choice—especially given Chester’s Tafrican lineage.
Having stared death in the face and won, Orley proposes they steal away and elope. However, before they can begin their new life, they uncover dangerous secrets that go deeper than they could ever imagine—involving those they trust the most.
Orley and Chester must discover exactly how deep these secrets run before their enemies make sure Chester is removed from Orley’s arms… forever.
Excerpt from The Servant Duchess of Whitcomb
THE SHARP retort of gunfire exploded around Orley Garrick, Duke of Whitcomb, and he ducked, trying to avoid the debris and the bodies of fallen soldiers around him as he surged forward. The smoke from the countless rifles burned his eyes as he desperately looked for the person who had caught his eye. He heard the cries of the dying calling out to him as he rode his horse farther into the thick of battle. Using his sword, he cut down an enemy soldier who raced toward him, mouth open as he let out a battle cry. Orley closed his eyes against the spray of blood across his face and blocked out the sound of the man’s death gurgle as he fell to the ground beneath his own horse.
Orley raced on toward the figure in white who didn’t belong on the battlefield. He called out a warning, telling the woman to be careful, because there was no way a man would be on a battlefield wearing a long, flowing white chemise, free of dust and bloodstain, appearing almost angelic among the crowd of soldiers. The woman didn’t stop. Instead she walked straight toward the commander of the enemy soldiers, and fear filled Orley. He wasn’t sure why; he didn’t know the woman, and yet he could not let anything happen to her.
At that moment, the woman turned to look at him, and Orley gasped when he realized the woman in front of him was not female as he’d suspected but male. Why in the world was a lady on the battlefield?
“You should not be here!” he yelled, trying to warn the male, but just as he got close enough to lift the woman onto the back of his horse, an enemy soldier plunged his sword through the woman’s back and out through his chest. Orley watched helplessly as the woman’s eyes widened moments before he collapsed to the ground, and a grief unlike aught he’d ever experienced ripped through him.
He was not sure how he knew, but the dying woman belonged to him, and someone had just taken him away.
Tossing his head back, Orley let out an anguished shout at the heavens.
ORLEY WOKE, panting and sweating, in the home of his friend, Heathcliff.
Holy. Shit. That one had been very different from his other nightmares. He rubbed his face with his hand and groaned as pain raced through his leg—the one that would never be the same. All because of war, a battle. All because of….
Orley shook his head. No, he wasn’t going to think about that.
Someone knocked lightly on the door, and Orley winced as he realized his plan to come to his room and take a quick nap after his taxing journey out of Tlondon had turned into a deep sleep and a brand-new nightmare.
God, he hated sleeping.
“Enter,” he called out as he sat up and swung his legs off the bed he was borrowing while visiting Heathcliff and Lucien for their country-house party. The door opened, and Orley turned to address the person standing there. He stopped short, almost swallowing his tongue as he took in the vision of the most beautiful creature to have ever been born.
Orley had been privileged to see many beautiful people in his life. Male and female, he was a lover of aesthetically pleasing images and didn’t discriminate. However, all of them paled in comparison to the lovely light-brown-skinned woman in front of him. Orley’s stomach clenched, his groin tightening as he inhaled sharply. The lovely scent of jasmine wafted up to his nostrils, and his eyes slid closed as he relished in the delightful fragrance emanating from the male who had just entered his room.
“Forgive me, Your Grace. I was sent to bring you a light repast and perhaps something to wash up with? His Grace the Duke of Pompinshire thought that perhaps you would like to freshen up before joining the rest of the guests downstairs.” The woman’s voice was soft and lyrical, with a slight lilt to it, and Orley wondered if perhaps he sang. He would have no problem lounging around on the settee listening to him sing or even just talk. Of course, as he took in the male’s appearance, he felt the desire to do much more than just listen to him.
“Your Grace? Are you ill?” the servant asked, and Orley swallowed, shaking his head.
“N-no. I’m fine. Just a bit out of sorts, I’m afraid. I appear to have overslept during my nap, and now I am feeling quite peckish,” he lied.
The woman nodded, his hazel eyes lighting with relief. Orley wondered at that. Was his well-being really of great concern, or was it just because the maid had been sent to look after Orley?
Orley allowed his gaze to rove over the young male’s form again, taking in every detail intently. He would like to have something to conjure up in his mind’s eye later on that evening when he put his hand to his already burgeoning erection.
Wearing the female black dress with a white apron, which was the maid’s uniform that was standard in most homes of the gentry, the young woman had honey blond hair that was currently pulled back in a very luscious chignon at the nape of his neck, and Orley could only imagine how long and thick it was. An image rose to his brain of that hair hanging down over his face as the young woman slid up and down his cock, and he pressed a hand to the sheets covering his waist. The young male’s skin was almond colored, and all Orley wanted to do was spend hours licking every inch of his body. He was not overly tall, only a few inches taller than Lucien, Heath’s husband, but still much shorter than Orley. And where Orley was all hard, thick muscles, the male maid before him was slender, though still with a lovely, toned body.
His slim-fingered hands held a covered silver tray, and Orley gestured him forward with a beckoning wave.
“Well, far be it from me to refuse such generosity from His Grace. You can just place it there on the nightstand,” he directed, watching the sway of the servant’s hips beneath the skirt of his maid’s gown as he walked toward the cherrywood nightstand. Orley shoved his fingers through his blond locks, messing up his hair and throwing his queue into disarray. He was unnerved as the vestiges of the nightmare faded from his mind, wreaking havoc with the lovely, distracting image of Heathcliff’s maid, whose form even now was causing a pleasurable ache in his balls.
“Is there anything else that I can do for you, Your Grace?” the maid asked, his voice hushed, eyes downcast, and a slight tinge of red to his light brown skin.
Orley prided himself on being a man of honor, integrity, and character. As a matter of fact, his grandfather, Charles Edrick Garrick I, the former Duke of Whitcomb, had more than once given him lessons and lectures on the way a gentleman was to behave. Anyone can strut around and use his physical strength to try and prove his brawn. But it takes honor, patience, gentleness, character, integrity, fortitude, knowing when to fight, knowing when to walk away, knowing when to love, how to love, and when to let go, and most importantly, knowing when to use your physical strength and when to be humble, that makes you a man.
Orley had always believed those words from his grandfather, had in fact lived by those words for his entire life. He’d only strayed from them when he’d served in His Majesty’s military and on those rare occasions when he’d allowed Blaine, Heathcliff, and Quincy to talk him into traveling down into the Lower East End to partake of the wares of the light-skirts. And while his grandfather’s words usually guided him, right now he was seriously considering doing something illicit.
He couldn’t believe the images that were passing through his mind. Flashes. Quick, as if they were memories like his time spent on the battlefield rather than the salacious, hopeful yearnings of a desirous, dry, fruitless attraction. However, the longer he spent in the company of the object of his mind’s current musings, the more it seemed his “dry, fruitless attraction” was soaked in hope and possibility. And perhaps it was for that reason that rationality and his grandfather’s words of character, honor, and integrity grew softer and softer until they were suddenly silent. All he could concentrate on was how lovely Heathcliff’s maid was. How round the male woman’s derriere was. How slim his shoulders were. How graceful his neck was.
How full his lips were, and how much Orley desperately wanted to kiss them.
“I think I would really like to know your name,” he heard himself saying.
The maid’s eyes widened, and he gasped softly. “Me, Your Grace?”
Orley chuckled. “Of course you. There is no one else in the room but you and I, and I assure you that I already know my own name. Unless it has changed in the time I have been asleep. It hasn’t, has it?”
The maid giggled and covered his mouth, shaking his head. Orley found himself even more enchanted. When was the last time he’d heard someone allow themselves to be so free that they just giggled? His life was constantly surrounded by danger, drama, gossip, backstabbers, and intrigue. He had a very small group of people he could trust, and they didn’t often have the time to smile, much less giggle. Being around someone who could giggle was a relief. It was like a bright ray of sunshine. Orley absolutely had to have the maid’s name.
“No, Your Grace. Your name hasn’t changed.” The maid glanced away for a moment, as if embarrassed, and then looked back. “My name is Chester.” He executed a flawless curtsy, and Orley rose from the bed and bowed low, smiling at Chester’s gasp. He knew Chester was surprised that a member of the gentry, and a duke no less, would bow to him, but he would soon learn that Orley was unlike every other duke out there.
“It is an honor to meet you, Chester. I am extremely happy to be in your presence and very happy that you will be serving me, and now….” Orley stepped close to Chester, looking down into the young woman’s hazel brown eyes. His heart was pounding, and his leg, for the first time in years, was not throbbing in pain—perhaps that was because only one thing on his body could be throbbing at a time, and his cock already had that covered. “I would very much like to kiss you.”
“Y-you would?” Chester stammered.
Orley nodded, lifting his hand to brush his fingers against the side of Chester’s cheek.
“Is that okay, Chester? I find you to be the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen in my entire life, and I would really like to kiss you. May I?”
“You’re asking me?” Chester looked confused. “I was told that men of your standing didn’t ask, that you just take.”
Orley shook his head, saddened by what Chester thought of men of the ton, but he knew Chester’s assumptions came as a result of dealing with “men” of a certain ilk. He would be speaking with Heathcliff about those matters later that week, but at that moment, all of his energy and attention was focused on Chester.
“Of course I am asking you. You always have a choice. Not just with me, but with every single man in the world. You do not have to do anything you don’t want to do. At least, that is the way it should be in a perfect world. So if you don’t want to kiss me, we don’t have to.” Orley would be disappointed, he would be haunted for days, perhaps a fortnight, by the fullness of Chester’s mouth, but eventually he would get over it.
Chester nibbled on his bottom lip and then grinned. “I would love for you to kiss me, Your Grace.”
Orley wanted to let out a loud yell of triumph, but he held back and lowered his lips to Chester’s full, pillow-soft mouth. He was fully expecting the surge of lust that spread through his limbs. Maybe he was even expecting the tingle that spread through his fingers and toes. However, the lightheaded feeling that drowned him in peace and yet simultaneous excitement, and the way his heart sped up, were completely unexpected. He growled and pulled Chester to him, as close as he could possibly get the woman. He felt a bit like a ravenous beast, wanting to devour Chester whole.
He lifted his lips to take a breath, opened his eyes, and gazed down into Chester’s dazed ones. Chester smiled slowly up at him. Orley grinned back, rubbing his hand up and down Chester’s back and already preparing for the next round of kissing.
So he was surprised when he went to lower his head for another kiss and was met with nothing but air and the sound of his bedroom door closing.