Weekend Excerpt–Coming Attractions: THE GIRL IN THE GUESTHOUSE

They say desperate times
call for desperate measures.
Charley Weatherly is about to realize that it’s true.

Life isn’t working out exactly the way Charley Weatherly imagined it might when she walked away from her steady paycheck as a copywriter to start her own business. It turns out that not everyone in town is knocking down the door of her tiny independent bookshop. She has lost money every quarter since she opened.

Now, with her grandmother in need of more care than Charley can provide, some difficult decisions have to be made. The rest of her 401k plus the proceeds from selling the business might keep Nana in Pacifico Manor for about a year. That would give Charley time to figure out her next move.

But when that money is irretrievably lost, Charley is faced with an impossible choice. Being a gestational surrogate for a couple who can’t have a baby on their own will bring in the kind of cash she needs. Can she really follow through? And has she finally met the right man at the wrong time?

Here’s a snippet from THE GIRL IN THE GUESTHOUSE.

Seated across from Drew and Alex Shepherd-Wang at the center of a long conference table, Charley struggled to focus as her head swam. Voices came to her as if she were underwater. In front of her was a stack of paper that constituted the agreement between herself and the couple on the other side of the table.

“What do you think about Item 15, Charley?” Jacqueline asked, bringing her out of her fog. “If the implantation of multiple embryos results in more than one fetus, are you willing to carry multiples?”

Charley blinked hard. “Multiples?” A glance across the table showed Alex and Drew watching her anxiously.

Jacqueline’s smile was kind. “Twins or triplets? On the off-chance, you realize. It’s not actually all that common. It’s just that implanting more than one embryo increases the chances of a successful pregnancy.”

Exhaling slowly, Charley nodded. “I understand. Yes, that’s fine.”

“Excellent.” The lawyer gave a satisfied nod. “Okay, everyone, initial Item 15. Obviously, Charley, in the unlikely event of multiple fetuses, your fee increases per baby.”

Charley nodded again and swallowed hard. Holy shit!

“Now if everyone can turn to page 5,” Jacqueline continued over the shuffling of paper. “Charley, the Shepherd-Wangs have a rather unusual offer. You can peruse it, but maybe it would be best to let them explain their thoughts.”

Frowning, Charley skimmed the item in question. …San Francisco…guest house…  When Drew quietly cleared his throat, she put the paper back on the table and looked up at him.

“Charley, we’d like to ask you to move to the city. I mean, once you’re pregnant, of course.”

Frown deepening, she tilted her head. “What?”

Alex slipped his hand through the crook of Drew’s elbow. “We’re just a little concerned, that’s all,” he said. “There you are, living all alone in Modesto, at least an hour and a half away, having to schlep all the way here every time you have a doctor’s appointment. Plus, what if something happened? Or there was some kind of emergency?”

“We have a guest house out back,” Drew offered earnestly. “It’s not huge but it’s very comfortable.”

Alex leaned forward. “And I’ve been itching to redecorate it for ages. What’s your favorite color?”

Head spinning, Charley leaned back in her seat. “I’m always drawn to purples and blues, I guess,” she murmured. “But I can’t just move to San Francisco.”

“Why not?” asked Alex reasonably.

“Well,” Charley spluttered, “because.”

With amused expressions, the pair watched her expectantly.

She gestured in front of herself. “For one thing, there’s the house. I can’t just…board up the house for months on end.”

“So rent it out,” Alex suggested reasonably. “I’m guessing your grandmother paid it off a long time ago, right? So that income would be profit. Which helps with your goal of keeping her in quality care.”

Charley blinked, picturing the vintage white bungalow. It was a good idea, she had to admit to herself. She considered what she might be able to charge and figured it would go a long way toward adding to the Pacifico Manor account. 

Then she thought about the marketing firm she’d left to take a chance on her own business.

“Plus, I was just about to see if I can get my old job back,” she said with a sigh.

Alex leaned forward on his elbows. “Is that your dream? Going back to a job you walked away from?”

“Of course not,” Charley frowned. “But what choice do I have?”

Drew’s smile was soft. “Rent out your place. We have a really comfortable life in Pacific Heights. Come stay with us in the guest house. Take the time to figure out your next move.”

“Besides owning your own bookstore, what is your wildest dream?” Alex gently prodded.

Charley blinked hard, attempting to slam shut the window on her most secret aspiration.

“It was right there,” Alex observed softly.

Charley rolled her eyes and shrugged softly. “It’s ridiculous, really.” She blew out a breath. “I’ve sometimes puttered around with writing a gothic romance novel, you know, like Jane Eyre or something. I know, it’s beyond–“

“Brilliant,” Alex finished for her. “You’re Charlotte, as in Brontë.”

She nodded as her face reddened. “My mom was a big fan, and she passed that passion on to me, I guess.”

“So come to our guesthouse and write your book.”

Sighing deeply, she shook her head slowly. “I don’t know. I mean, even if I did, I’d need to have a job. I can’t just…” she waved her hands again, “not work.”

“I own five companies. We can find you a job, if you insist. We want you to be happy. And we’d feel more comfortable if you were close by.” Drew watched her curiously.

Charley pushed back from the table and stood, walking over to the window where she looked out over the busy city. She was afraid to admit to herself that their offer sounded like the dream vacation she hadn’t had the luxury to take since she’d quit her full-time job. To not have to worry about the house other than to collect the rent payment, maybe occasionally see to some minor repair or other? To not worry about paying any bills other than her phone and the insurance on her ancient Honda?

But what about Nana? 

She sighed. That was an issue. 

Why, though? She could still drive out to see her grandmother anytime she pleased. She’d probably have more time to do it than she did now, certainly more time than she’d have if she worked full-time. 

Doing a job she hated. At a place where everyone would know that she’d risked chasing her dream and gone down in flames.

Maybe this was her second chance. Inhaling deeply, she turned back to the table.

“I’ll do it,” she nodded.

THE GIRL IN THE GUESTHOUSE by Pandora Spocks

Keep watching for the official cover reveal for
THE GIRL IN THE GUESTHOUSE.


Until then, why not read
RANNIGAN’S REDEMPTION?
Three books, one epic law romance.
books2read.com/RannigansRedemption

Weekend Excerpt–CHASING ORDINARY

Rancher and artist Petey Cavanaugh has no idea that Nik,
the handsome businessman she’s falling for,
is actually Europe’s most eligible prince.

When she learns the truth, sparks will fly!

Red-haired Petey Cavanaugh is a sculptor who welds steel and glass creations. A young widow, she lives on her in-laws’ sheep ranch in Montana where she helps out during the day, working on her art at night.

Looking to raise money to expand the ranch’s business, she gratefully accepts her art school roommate’s offer of a gallery show in Manhattan. It’s been years since she was in the city, and she’s happy to visit her old friend.

Nik is in New York on business. He’s been traveling for nearly a month, enduring endless meetings, attending obligatory dinners, and battling jet-lag. On his way to yet another business dinner, his world collides with Petey’s one rainy Manhattan night.

Their mutual attraction is immediate, but Nik’s skeptical. Could it possibly be that this gorgeous, enchanting artist has no idea that he’s Europe’s most eligible prince?

Spending time with Petey is Nik’s first-ever taste of ordinary. What will happen when she finds out the truth?

In this snippet, Nik and Petey meet for the first time.

Nik peered grimly out the window at the passing grey tableau as the Mercedes made its way uptown to the exclusive Empire Club. Dalton Rigby’s great-great-grandfather had been a founding member, as the man had been careful to point out every time Nik had ever met him.

At least the food at dinner will be good, he consoled himself. Mentally, he went over his talking points as the city passed by in a gloomy blur.

A flash of color on the sidewalk caught his focus. Ahead, a woman in a bright red dress was attempting to hail a cab in the pouring rain. As the car pulled alongside her, he watched in slow motion as a spray of water completely doused her.

“Stop the car!” he shouted.

The driver eyed him in the rearview mirror.

“Stop the car,” he repeated.

“But sir,” Jorgen protested from his seat beside Nik.

Shrugging, the driver stopped, causing the car behind them to slam on its brakes and honk loudly.

Nik was already halfway out of the car. “Go around the block,” he called over his shoulder as he stepped out into the rain, slamming the door behind him.

The woman was still standing where she’d been when the Mercedes’ front wheel had torn through a deep puddle, spraying her with dirty water. Nik made his way to her, ignoring the rain that pelted him as he walked.

“I’m terribly sorry. Are you alright?”

She stood shaking from cold, red hair matted to her head, black streams of mascara running down her face like cracks in fine china. “I’m s-s-s-soaked!” she shrieked.

“Again, I’m so sorry.” Nik’s expression was contrite. He shrugged out of his suit jacket and wrapped it around her. She was tiny, and the jacket nearly swallowed her whole. He glanced around. “Is your apartment near here?”

She shook her head. “I’m locked out. And I’m unbelievably late. I can’t go like this. And I can’t get back into the fucking apartment! Fuck!”

“My car is coming back around the block. I’ll give you a ride to wherever you need to-“

At that moment, boxy delivery truck hit the same puddle, spraying both of them. They gasped in unison. Momentarily blinded by the wall of water, Nik sputtered and swiped at his face. “Bloody hell!”

He looked down at the woman whose eyes were wide with surprise. “Here comes my car now. Come with me. I’m staying at the Plaza. We’ll call ahead and have the stylist meet us. Once we’re both cleaned up, I’ll take you where you need to go.”

She looked up at him in alarm. “I’m not going to your hotel with you!”

“No, I don’t mean… I realize how inappropriate it sounds, but I promise, I only mean to help.” He held up his hands in surrender. “Clearly you can’t stay here. And you can’t go to wherever it is you were going, not like this.” He aimed for a reassuring smile. “The services of the spa and salon will be at your disposal. And I know Colin will have something for you to wear.”

He watched as she considered her options. “I feel responsible. Please let me make things right.”

The black Mercedes pulled up to the sidewalk and the driver walked around to open the back door. “Please,” he pleaded softly.

The woman drew a shaky breath. “Okay. Thank you,” she said quietly.

CHASING ORDINARY by Pandora Spocks

CHASING ORDINARY
is available at your favorite online bookseller.
books2read.com/ChasingOrdinary

Weekend Excerpt–WARRIOR MINE

She is the perfect combination of princess and warrior.

Scott Nielsen and Jackie Walker

Their attraction is instant from the moment they meet.
But he’s Dominant. And no way is she submissive.
Is it a missed connection? Or a divine appointment?

Scott Nielsen is ready for change. He’s walked away from his career as a wilderness counselor, planning to start his own outdoor survival school. He looks up his old friend and former colleague Blake Walker, intent on leasing space at Blake’s family’s remote wilderness guest lodge. That’s where he meets Blake’s sister Jackie, who runs the lodge with her brother’s help. Her strength and independence intrigue Scott. A single mom, Jackie has no intention of being anyone’s submissive.

In his personal life, Scott is tired of casual sex in the BDSM club scene. Envious watching his buddy Blake fall head over heels for his own submissive, Scott thinks he might be ready to take the plunge himself. As he and Jackie spend time together, he’s enchanted with her inner Warrior Princess. But Jackie’s been burned before. And she has two children who are her priority, not to mention the business to run. As independent as she is, she can’t see relinquishing her power to a man, not even one she’s falling for.

Scott’s heart aches at the idea of not having Jackie in his life. Can she take another chance on love, or will she insist on ignoring her submissive soul?

WARRIOR MINE is Dream Dominant Book 4. If you enjoyed Book 2, LOST & BOUND, you’ll love this spin-off stand-alone story.

Here’s a steamy little teaser from WARRIOR MINE.

Throughout the morning’s activities and on the ride back to the lodge, Jackie and Scott exchanged heated glances. She found herself wishing the day away, longing for the night to come. If he didn’t come to her, she would definitely go to him. She needed him in the worst way.

Unless he really is angry with me, Jackie fretted.

She needn’t have worried. Much later that night, after putting Grant and Emma to bed, Jackie retreated to her own room, taking her time as she showered, washing her hair and shaving various pertinent areas. After blowing her hair dry, she brushed on a touch of black mascara and added sheer lip gloss. She eyed herself in the mirror as she slid a new nightie over her head, a silky seafoam slip gown with a sheer lace bodice.

Ready to tiptoe down the hallway to Scott’s room, Jackie opened the bathroom door and was surprised to find him standing there, bare-chested with his arms crossed.

“You’ve kept me waiting, Princess.” He arched an eyebrow severely, but the heat in his eyes belied his strict demeanor.

She raised her chin defiantly. “Well, I didn’t actually know-“

“Knees. Now.” He pointed sharply to the floor beside his feet, his voice low but intense.

She was tempted to come back with a smart retort but thought better of it. Instead, with a saucy glance his way, she lowered herself to her knees, resting her hands, palms up, on her thighs, the way he’d shown her in the cabin. She tried to still herself despite the adrenaline that thrummed through her veins. As independent as she was, there was something incredibly hot about Scott taking charge.

Her eyes were closed, but she felt him step closer, sliding a bare foot between her thighs. When he wiggled his toes, they touched her pussy, and she gasped lightly.

“You have had a day, haven’t you, Princess?” he asked, tenderly stroking her hair. “You started off by charging after a bear who could have killed you with one swipe of a paw.”

Jackie snorted. “That’s a little dramatic. I hardly think-“

“Silence.” Though his voice was soft, his tone was sharp. “You will speak only when you have the King’s permission.”

Briefly, she scowled up at him then closed her eyes again, sighing deeply.

“You challenged me when I confronted you, and you used profanity. All of that before breakfast.” He placed a finger beneath her chin and tilted her face toward his. “Look at me, Princess.”

Jackie complied, attempting to fix him with a defiant stare, but failing when she saw the fire in his eyes. Instead, she just blinked up at him, feeling the heat between her thighs as he wiggled his toes again.

“That sassy mouth of yours. I think we need to give it a job.” He lowered his zipper, releasing his solid, erect cock. “Open.”

Unconsciously, she licked her lips and her stomach performed a half-gainer as she saw the precum pooled at his bulbous tip. With a glance up at him, she opened her mouth and took him in, moaning with pleasure as she lapped up his essence.

Scott exhaled deeply, resting a hand on her head. Then he cleared his throat. “Your infractions have piled up. But I’m not going to spank you now. That will come later, when we have more privacy. Because we’re-“

He stopped, gasping as she increased her suction and fisted the length of him that didn’t fit into her mouth. Jackie smiled to herself, as much as she could with her mouth filled with cock, pleased that she could exert a little control over the King.

“Fuck me,” he breathed. “We’re going to need privacy because I’m going to wear your ass out. Right now, however, I’m going to fuck your face. After which, I’ll be fucking your cunt.”

He gripped the sides of her head and shoved himself deep, choking Jackie. She coughed and sputtered.

Scott watched her carefully. “Safeword if you need to.”

Determinedly, she shook her head and continued sucking with gusto as he pushed in and out. She felt his cock grow unimaginably hard.

“Shit, Jackie, I’m coming,” he hissed. “Take it all, Princess. Don’t waste a drop.”

He shoved into her a final time and his hot cum jetted into the back of her throat. Jackie swallowed as quickly as she could, eager to prove to him that she could, choking only once. When he started to remove himself, she closed her lips around him, sucking off any remaining ejaculate and earning a deep groan.

Scott ruffled her hair as he sat heavily on the side of her bed. “That was very good, Princess.” He gave her a quizzical look. “And that was the first time you’ve ever swallowed?”

She nodded smugly, and he smiled. “You get a little more practice, and I’m a dead man,” he laughed.

WARRIOR MINE by Pandora Spocks

WARRIOR MINE is available at your favorite online bookseller.
books2read.com/WarriorMine

Weekend Excerpt–LUKE & BELLA

They traveled the world looking for excitement.
But love is the ultimate adventure.

Strong-willed ginger Bella Grant is a take-charge television journalist with an appetite for adventure. Handsome and sexy Luke McGillicutty is a world-weary photographer coaxed out of premature retirement with the promise of traveling the world with a smart, spunky redhead. They’ve been paired up to create a new brand of television travel program.

Traveling to romantic destinations, staying in first-class hotels, finding adventure at every turn, it’s not surprising that the two fall in love. Luke is stunned to realize that Bella is the woman he’s looked for his whole life. She’s beautiful, smart, funny, and courageous.

The only thing is, Luke hasn’t been completely up front with her. He hasn’t told her that he’s into BDSM. He could play it safe, keep the relationship going exactly the way it is. But Luke wants more. As a Dominant, he craves the intimacy that a Dom/sub relationship provides. And he knows without a doubt that Bella is the perfect submissive. How will she react if he approaches her about submitting to him as a Dominant? Maybe she’d be intrigued by the idea. On the other hand, he could lose her forever.

Life on the road working with Bella is great. Nights spent in Bella’s arms are amazing. Should Luke just be satisfied with the way things are? Or should he risk everything on the chance that they could have it all?

LUKE & BELLA is the first book in the Dream Dominant Collection. It’s part travelogue and part erotic romance. Here’s a steamy little teaser.

They explored their way through the Amsterdam evening, shooting video here and there, stopping now and then to check footage or to look into a shop window. As Bella stood peering at the display in the window of an antique shop, Luke watched her, amazed once again at her simple beauty. He slipped an arm around her waist, pulling her to him. She looked up at him, smiling and stood on her tiptoes to plant a light kiss on his lips.

“Amsterdam is lovely, m’lady,” he said. “But I’m looking at you and thinking about being back at the hotel.”

She blushed slightly. “What are you thinking about the hotel, Cowboy?” she asked.

“I’m not sure whether or not you noticed,” he said kissing the corner of her mouth, “but there’s a big old tub in the bathroom.”

“Is there?” she asked innocently. “Are you feeling dirty?”

He grinned wickedly. “I’m feeling all kinds of dirty, m’lady.” She giggled softly. “God, I love that!” he growled.

“What?” she asked, genuinely confused.

“I love when you laugh,” he replied.

Bella rolled her eyes, laughing self-consciously.

They made their way back to The Toren, holding hands and talking quietly about nothing in particular. Once back in the suite, Luke smiled and said, “Someone thoughtfully sent a bottle of Scotch.”

Bella bowed theatrically. “That was thoughtful, wasn’t it?” she laughed.

“Would m’lady care for some wine?” he asked, grinning.

“I’d love some wine,” she answered. “How about you call for some and I’ll get the bath started?”

“I knew we made a great team,” he laughed. “Division of labor.”

Bella retreated to the bedroom as he picked up the phone. She started the bathwater, tossing in some of the lavender bath beads, then returned to the bedroom to retrieve candles from her trunk and she placed them around the bathroom, lighting them. Finally, she stripped down and donned her pink satin robe.

When she returned to the sitting room, the steward who brought the wine was just leaving. Luke turned and saw her, letting out a long low breath. “Wow,” he said. He poured a glass of wine for her and one of Scotch for himself. “To a beautiful lady,” he toasted.

She crossed the room and put her arms around his neck. He put down the glasses and pulled her to him, kissing her lips, cupping her breast through the silky fabric.

“Hey, Cowboy,” she breathed into his kiss.

He reached down and untied the sash of her robe, allowing it to hang open, just revealing the inside curve of her breasts, her smooth belly, the V shape of her sex with its light swath of red hair. “Damn, girl, you take my breath away,” he whispered.

She shrugged her shoulders and the robe fell to the floor. “Come on, Cowboy,” she whispered back, turning to walk back to the bedroom.

He carried their drinks as he followed her into the bedroom, appreciating the view of her from behind. She turned and, pulling him to her by the front of his shirt, and kissed him deeply. Then she unbuttoned his shirt and helped him off with it. She stepped back to watch him undo his pants and step out of them. Taking his hand again she led him into the bathroom.

He held on to her as she stepped into the bath and then followed, sitting behind her, leaning against the back of the tub. She sat between his legs and eased back against him, sipping her wine, letting out a long sigh. This was exactly where she wanted to be. She rested her head back on his shoulder.

Luke drank in the feeling of her wrapped in himself, the sensuality of the moment; the warm water, the candlelight, the scent of the bath blending with her fading perfume, her soft skin, the contented smile on her face, the glow of her hair, her breasts, her nipples begging to be kissed.

He kissed her neck, just below the ear and slowly moved his hands down her body, stopping to fondle her breasts, to tug gently on her nipples causing them to harden and stretch. He gently parted her legs, finding her soft sex and softly he caressed her there.

She responded with a low, deep moan, pressing herself against his hand, begging for more pressure. He continued stroking her before sliding in first one finger then two, beginning a slow deliberate circle inside her. Feeling her release building, Bella gasped and moaned again. “Let go, babe. Lose yourself,” he hissed. “Come in my hand.” Orgasm thundered through her body starting in that small secret place and radiating from there as she cried out in release.

She took a moment to catch her breath, and then turned in the tub to face him. She moved onto his lap facing him, wrapping her legs around his waist, and reached down to stroke his erection, kissing him roughly as she did. She felt his gasp in her kiss and she moved closer, raising herself higher before sliding down to sheath him.

He began to move his hips and she matched the rhythm of his movements, clenching him with herself as she moved up and down. A low growl escaped from deep in his chest and he gripped her, holding her firmly in place, burying himself deep inside her. She began to moan as once again she neared climax, crying out as her body shattered with pleasure. He finished with a loud cry, “Unh, God, baby…” Afterward, he held her tightly, gently stroking her back, kissing her forehead.

Later, after they’d toweled off and slipped into bed, Luke watched as she fell asleep in his arms. He thought about the first time he saw her, red curls all sunlit, and he smiled as he remembered her nervous introduction. “I’m Bella. Isabella. Just Bella,” she’d stammered.

“I love you, Bella, Isabella,” he whispered. In her sleep, Bella smiled. He watched her until dreams overtook him.

LUKE & BELLA by Pandora Spocks

LUKE & BELLA is available at your favorite online bookseller.
books2read.com/LukeAndBella1

Weekend Excerpt–FOR SPARROW

Golden Flogger Award Winner!

A platonic Dom/sub relationship?
It’s a damn odd arrangement.

When Jessi Crenshaw’s husband Graham dies unexpectedly, she’s devastated. He’s the only man she’s ever loved. Just eighteen when she met him, she’s been married to him for twenty-five years. Now she’s lost her friend, her lover…and her Dominant.

But as it turns out, Graham had an inkling that his health was in decline, and he tapped his friend and protégé in the Lifestyle, firefighter and paramedic Judd Farris, to be Jessi’s Dominant until she gets back on her feet.

Judd is determined to fulfill his promise to his friend. But it’s a damn odd arrangement—a platonic Dom/sub relationship. With her fiery auburn hair, sparkling green eyes, and audacious spirit, Jessi captured his attention the first time he ever saw her. At her husband’s funeral.

A man could go to hell for the things he’s been thinking. But they’ve drawn a line, and he’s going to stick to it.

Judd’s sexy good looks and his gentle confidence aren’t lost on Jessi. She’s torn between loyalty to the man she loved, and desire for the man increasingly in her fantasies. In the letter Graham left for her, he mentioned that she might find Judd attractive. But that’s simply ridiculous. He’s five years younger than she is. He couldn’t possibly be interested in her. Could he?

Judd’s a Dom without a sub, and Jessi’s a sub without a Dom. It’s perfect for the time being. Could it be that Graham had more in mind than merely a temporary solution?

And could it all end at the hands of a madman?

FOR SPARROW is near and dear to my heart for several reasons. For one thing, it’s set where I live in Palm Beach County, Florida. I loved having the main characters visit some of my favorite local places.

In FOR SPARROW, I wrote my first-ever real villain. While Jessi and Judd are working to find balance in their new relationship, a deadly menace is heading ever closer.

This story also has its origin in my musings about a couple of my dear ‘subbie’ friends. And it’s the 2018 Golden Flogger Award Winner for Best BDSM Book, BDSM Light.

Here’s a very steamy little teaser from FOR SPARROW.

They followed the porter up the stairs to the last door on the end. He opened it with a flourish. “Welcome to your suite.”

Judd motioned for Jessi to go ahead, and she entered, finding herself in a small foyer that opened onto a warm, inviting, luxurious suite. The room was appointed with British colonial furnishings in muted earth tones. The king-sized mahogany four-poster bed was flanked by matching side tables, and beyond that was a sitting area with a small sofa opposite a pair of wing-backed chairs, a low table between them. But what caught her attention was the pair of French doors that opened onto a generous veranda overlooking the ocean.

Jessi drew open the door and stepped outside as a warm breeze ruffled her hair. A pair of rattan rockers with thick beige cushions sat pointed toward the water, a small circular table between them. She crossed to the white railing then turned to look back into the room.

Judd was handing a few bills to the porter and thanking him. He closed the door behind the man, then joined Jessi outside. The roof hung over the expanse of the veranda, so that even on a rainy day, the outdoor space could be enjoyed.

“What do you think, Angel?” he asked, sliding his arm around her waist and nuzzling her neck as they faced the beach and the water beyond.

“I think,” she tiptoed up to kiss him, “that this is the most beautiful place I’ve ever seen.” She nuzzled his cheek, wrapping both arms around him. “Thank you so much for bringing me here.”

He pulled her close, kissing the top of her head. “I’m happy you like it. But there are more surprises.”

Jessi looked up at him. “More surprises?”

Judd nodded. “But something’s wrong.” He knitted his brow, feigning confusion. “Angel is here, and dressed, rather than on her knees, and naked. How is that possible?”

She tried to suppress a smile. “That’s possible because Sir didn’t tell me.”

He shook his head in mock exasperation. “Blaming it on me, too? The infractions just pile up. Hurry!” He smacked her bottom lightly as she headed inside, then turned to gaze out over the strip of sugar-white sand separating the land from the crystal blue water.

If he were being honest with himself, he’d have to acknowledge the tendrils of anxiety that tickled his stomach. Offering Jessi a collar was a big step-what if she said ‘no’?

Could she say no? He sighed deeply. He didn’t think so.

He turned back to the room and was pleased with what he saw. He’d been deliberately vague in his instructions for Jessi. She knew to be naked and on her knees, but he hadn’t said where. In the absence of any directive, she’d gone with what was their norm, kneeling at the foot of the bed. His cock celebrated the sight of Jessi, arms behind her, breasts pushed forward, her head bowed submissively with her eyes closed.

Judd stalked noiselessly across the tile floor to where his bags were, unzipping the top of one and extracting a black satin blindfold mask. Jessi waited patiently, eyes still closed. Rather than standing in front of her, which was their custom, he stopped behind her, lightly petting her hair.

“Angel, you are amazingly beautiful. You have no idea. I think,” he slid the blindfold into place, “I want you to forget about seeing for a while. Just concentrate on your other senses.”

He moved back to his bag, returning with a small implement in his hand. To his knowledge, Jessi hadn’t experienced a Wartenburg wheel. At least she’d never mentioned it to him. “Safe words, Angel. What are your safe words?”

“Green, yellow, and red, Sir.”

“Good girl,” he nodded. “Use them if you need them.”

Lightly, Judd drew his fingers across Jessi’s shoulders, leaning down to fondle her breasts. He heard the change in her breathing and knew she was aroused. Her nipples peaked instantly, her areolas simply tight pink puckers around the sharp points.

Applying only the slightest pressure, he drew the spiked wheel up her arm from her elbow to her shoulder, eliciting a gasp from Jessi. He stilled his movements. “Color, Angel?”

“Green, Sir. I was just…surprised.”

Judd smiled, resuming his meandering with the wheel, drawing it across her collarbone to her other shoulder and down, delighting in the goosebumps that formed across her body. Her nipples sharpened to impossibly tight points, and unable to resist, he headed that direction with the wheel, lightly grazing them.

Jessi caught her lower lip in her teeth and groaned softly. Abruptly, he stopped his survey of her torso and walked away, returning a moment later with something different in his hands.

Curious, Jessi listened as hard as she could, straining to hear what Judd might be doing next. As she waited, impatient for his sweet torture to continue, she became aware of the scent of leather. She turned her head this way and that, trying to figure out where it was coming from. She heard Judd’s throaty chuckle and felt a puff of air on her face. The leather scent was a bit stronger.

“I’m not sure what you want me to do, Sir,” she confessed.

“You may remove the blindfold, Angel.”

Jessi loosened her grip behind her back and reached up to slowly slip off her blindfold. Blinking against the soft light in the room, she saw nothing but the bed.

From behind her, Judd lowered a purple leather collar into view. It was plain, for the most part. A strip of purple leather about an inch wide, it was marked only by a quartet of silver rivets in the center of the strip, flanking a D-ring with a round ring attached to it. There was a silver buckle on one end and the other end tapered into a point. Judd moved around and sat on the end of the bed, laying the leather strip over his knee. Wide-eyed, Jessi ventured a finger to lightly stroke the collar. Then she looked up to Judd.

“What do you say, Angel? Will you be my submissive? Will you agree to obey me, trusting me to lead you?”

Jessi stroked the collar again and gazed back at Judd. Her voice was soft. “I’ve already given you my submission. I do trust you to lead me.”

Judd smiled. “This makes it official. I’d be honored Jessi, if you’d wear my collar.” Earnest longing sparkled in his eyes.

Jessi bowed her head. “If it pleases you, Sir, I’d love to wear your collar.”

–FOR SPARROW is the 2018 Golden Flogger Award Winner for Best BDSM Book–BDSM Light.

FOR SPARROW by Pandora Spocks

FOR SPARROW is available at your favorite online bookseller.
books2read.com/ForSparrow

Weekend Excerpt–MIDNIGHT COVE

They say still waters run deep.
In the tiny lakeside town of Midnight Cove,
still waters harbor dark secrets.

Writer Bree Blaylock just wants a chance to catch her breath.  Having finally escaped an abusive relationship, she’s relieved to have found a quiet place to finish writing her new book.  

From the moment she arrives, she realizes that she’s not alone in her rented cottage on the lake.  But she’s okay with that. In her experience, the living are always more dangerous than the dead.

Meeting handsome local lawman Jake Hanson wasn’t even remotely on her radar.  Now that she has, maybe it’s time to take another chance on love.  

But can he keep her safe when the past comes calling?

Read a teaser from MIDNIGHT COVE. And after the excerpt, you can watch the official book trailer. Just don’t watch it with the lights off.

Sand feels cool beneath her bare feet, and a light breeze ruffles her long red hair. Turquoise water sparkles in the sunlight as foam-edged waves rush up the sandy slope. Normally, the beach would make her nervous, but this isn’t her beach. It’s just a dream.

Bree relaxes in the knowledge that she’s tucked safely in bed. She’ll just enjoy the serenity of the imaginary shoreline. Smiling to herself, she looks down past her flowing white dress to the footprints she’s leaving in the soft wet sand. She wonders if this is Fiji. She’s always wanted to go there.

Further down the beach, she sees a figure and she stiffens, hoping this isn’t turning into one of those dreams. Maybe she should wake up now. She squints, raising a hand to shade her eyes.

The figure is closer now. It’s a man with light hair. Bree relaxes again. She doesn’t know who the stranger is. She simply knows who he is not.

Bree drags her toes through the shallow tide, playfully kicking up water in front of her as she approaches the stranger. To her left, a trio of dolphins leap joyously. Nevermind that the water is too shallow. That’s how it is in dreams.

She raises her hand in a wave. “Hello!”

The stranger stops a short distance away, a bemused expression on his face. He’s nice-looking, she notices. His blonde hair is a little shaggy, but his light blue eyes sparkle with intelligence. He’s dressed a bit oddly in her estimation. He’s wearing faded blue jeans that flair toward the bottom and his blue Superman T-shirt looks vintage. A strand of puka shells encircles his neck. Like Bree, his feet are bare and he’s wading along the edge of the water.

“Hello,” he returns.

“Hi.’

He grins broadly. “You said that already.”

Bree shrugs lightly and twirls in a circle, swinging her skirt around. “I know. Did you see the dolphins?”

He nods and looks toward the water. “I did. They’re cool.”

“This is a cool dream,” Bree agrees.

He smiles again. “What’s your name?”

“Bree. Bree Blaylock. What’s yours?”

“I’m Steven.”

She holds out her hand. “Nice to meet you, Steven.”

He stares at her outstretched hand and hesitates before reaching to take it. Static electricity pops slightly as their skin touches.

“It’s nice to meet you, Bree.”

“Do you think this is Fiji?” Bree asks.

Steven glances around and shrugs. “I’m not sure. Do you think it is?”

“Maybe. It’s not Clearwater, that’s for sure.” Bree wraps her arms across herself and shudders.

“Is Clearwater bad?” he asks.

“This is a happy dream. Let’s not talk about Clearwater.”

Steven shrugs. “Fine by me. We can just enjoy the beach.”

Bree nods happily and slips her arm through his. Together, they wander along the shoreline, stopping occasionally to examine a shell or two. Steven stoops, picks up something, and hands it to her. “Here, this is for you.”

It’s a tiger cowry. She knows this because as a child, she had a book of shells and she’s seen the picture.

“It’s beautiful. Thank you.”

He nods, looking pleased. “Keep it so you can remember this beach. So you can remember me.”

Bree turns to him frowning. “Will I see you again?”

Steven shrugs. “I don’t know.”

“I hope so,” she says fervently. “This is the nicest dream I’ve had in a long time.”

“I’ve liked it, too.” There’s a hint of sadness in his eyes.

***

Sniffing loudly, Bree rolled onto her right side and curled around her extra pillow. Her eyes fluttered briefly before she was fast asleep once again.

From the corner of the bedroom, Steven watched her in wonder. He had no idea how he’d ended up in this woman’s dream. But for the first time in a very long time, he hadn’t been alone.

MIDNIGHT COVE by Pandora Spocks

MIDNIGHT COVE is available at your favorite online bookseller.
books2read.com/MidnightCove

Weekend Excerpt–LOST & BOUND

Spoiled Hollywood starlet Shasta Pyke is used to getting her own way.
She’s met her match in Dominant mountain man Blake Walker.

Blake Walker is no stranger to tragedy. Immediately following a horrific event years earlier, he was lost for a while until he embraced his Dominant nature and found his true calling. But things change and now he’s back where he started, helping to run his family’s secluded lake lodge.

When pampered Hollywood starlet Shasta Pyke gets into trouble with the law, she’s sent to the wilderness of northern Ontario to cool her heels for a few weeks. There she meets sexy bush pilot Blake, who is tasked with seeing to her needs as the sole guest at the lodge.

Initially, Blake isn’t impressed with the spoiled actress, but he’s happy that her visit allows for his sister Jackie and her kids to go on a much-needed vacation. Try as he might, he can’t figure out what the hell Shasta Pyke is doing so far out of her element.

Shasta’s attracted to Blake’s obvious good looks, but there’s more to him than that. He sees through her armor to the vulnerable little girl she hides from the world. The Daddy Dominant in him craves to shelter her, to make her his own.

Is there any way Shasta will agree to submit to Blake’s Dominance?

Here’s a teaser from LOST & BOUND.

Curiosity got the better of Shasta as the black Lincoln pulled up to the red-painted clapboard lodge. The trip down the unpaved drive from the highway had taken a good fifteen minutes. A friend of a friend of someone Eddie knew had told him about the place.

Shasta had checked it out on her phone. The website wasn’t kidding when they said ‘remote.’ The tree-shrouded driveway opened up onto a clearing to reveal the large main lodge and a sprinkling of small cabins, all painted the same warm red. A sparkling lake was visible beyond the buildings and Shasta could see a small plane at the end of a long dock.

She climbed out of the back of the car and took a few steps to stretch her legs. Still wearing the outfit she’d worn to court, she realized that stilettos were probably not the way to go on the soft ground.

Eddie looked at her across the top of the car. “Well, kiddo, are you ready?”

She flipped her red hair in annoyance and followed him up the front steps and into the two-story building.

They were greeted by a petite brunette woman with a friendly face. “Welcome! We’re so glad to have you. I’m Jackie Walker. This place has been in my family for three generations.”

Shasta shrugged noncommittally. Eddie filled in the gap. “Thank you. Shasta is understandably tired from the trip. I can take care of checking her in.”

“Of course,” Jackie replied, watching Shasta curiously. “Let’s get that squared away now.”

Shasta wandered over to a window and peeked out. “If you think I’m staying in one of these little shacks, you’re crazy.”

“Oh, no, Ms. Pyke, we have you in the island cabin. It’s very private,” Jackie assured her.

“Hmm, island cabin. That sounds more like it.” Digging into her huge black leather bag, she extracted her phone and stalked outside. It wasn’t that she was anxious to talk to anyone. She simply felt humiliated. Her life had spun so far out of her control and she felt like an errant child. She stabbed at the phone anyway, and she was irritated to find that there was no signal.

“Why can’t I get some fucking bars?” she muttered to herself, waving the device around as if she’d catch a signal if she hit just the right angle.

“You won’t find a signal. There are no towers for about a hundred miles.”

Shasta turned and glared at the source of that information. He was a good foot taller than she, with broad shoulders wrapped in some sort of flannel. He had dark brown hair with caramel highlights that glinted in the sunlight filtering through the tall pine trees, and he’d pulled it back, presumably to keep it out of his eyes, which were the most sparkling blue.

Seeing her glare, he raised both hands in mock surrender and walked away, heading for the front door of the lodge. The door opened just as he reached it.

“Oh, good, you’ve met Blake. Blake will be taking you across to your cabin.”

“Oh, good,” Shasta muttered as Eddie shot her a dirty look.

Jackie chose to ignore her sarcasm. “He’ll load your things into the boat and you can get settled.”

“Okay, kiddo, this is where I leave you.” Eddie crossed to Shasta.

“Can I speak to you for a moment?” she asked him. She took his arm and led him a few feet away. “Please,” she begged, clutching his hand, “please don’t leave me here. Don’t make me do this.”

“You’ll be fine. Look at me,” he soothed. He gently took her chin and raised her eyes. “You’ve got this. It’s just a vacation. I’ll be back to get you in no time.”

Waves of desolation washed over Shasta and she felt hot tears threatening. She pulled her sunglasses into place and cleared her throat. “Okay, fine, whatever.”

Eddie flashed his winning smile. “That’s my girl. I’ll see you in a few weeks.”

Shasta fought panic, willing her breathing to return to normal as she watched the car carrying Eddie disappear down the drive. She turned to see the woman watching her curiously.

“Blake probably has your things in the boat by now. But you’re welcome to stay for supper before you go out to the island. It’s not fancy, but it’s good.” The woman smiled reassuringly.

Uncomfortable, Shasta crossed her arms in front of herself. “No, thanks, I’ll just go to my place now.”

The woman nodded. “If you just take that path, you’ll end up at the dock.” She waved to her right. “The kids and I leave for Orlando in the morning. Blake will be here to help you with anything you might need.”

Wordlessly, Shasta nodded and headed off in the direction the woman had indicated.

***

Blake had heard the car pull up. He dawdled, swiping at imaginary smudges on the passenger door of the de Havilland Beaver that rested at the end of the dock. He had no desire to get caught up in whatever celebrity fanfare accompanied their new guest’s arrival.

The voices faded after everyone went inside and still Blake waited a few minutes longer before making his way back up the dock toward the front of the lodge. He was surprised to see a young woman standing alone in the clearing in the center of the cabins. Her back was to him and he took a moment to watch her.

His first impression was that she was sexy as hell. Her shoulder-length hair was bright red, and expensive-looking sunglasses sat perched on top of her head. She was wearing a white halter blouse with a very short black skirt. Her high-heeled shoes were bright pink suede and they wobbled precariously as she marched around holding her mobile phone in front of her like a divining rod.

When he told her about the lack of signal, she whipped around, giving him a glare that would freeze lava. Fine, lady, have it your way, he thought.

Thankfully, Jackie came out with a smarmy-looking older guy in an expensive Italian suit. Blake busied himself retrieving a mountain of bags from the trunk of the black Lincoln. He noticed that the guest of honor grabbed the suit’s arm and pulled him off to the side for a little chat. He wondered if her tone was any friendlier with him, and he figured that it wasn’t.

He’d just finished loading all the bags into the front of the red aluminum skiff when Pink Shoes came tapping down the dock. His gaze started at the shoes and slid up shapely legs to the tight skirt and curved hips. The deep V in the halter top hinted at stellar tits and her lips were a deep red. She wore too much makeup in his estimation, but there was no denying that Shasta Pyke was hot.

“Are you ready to head over to the island?”

He watched her grip her huge black leather shoulder bag, hiking it higher up on her bare shoulder. “Um, yes, please.”

Blake wasn’t sure, but she seemed embarrassed by her earlier behavior. He offered her his hand and she took it, gingerly stepping into the boat. She sat on the center bench, facing forward, away from him, and clutching her bag like it was a life preserver.

LOST & BOUND by Pandora Spocks

LOST & BOUND is available at your favorite online bookseller.
books2read.com/LostandBound

Weekend Excerpt–ANNA’S HEART

She’s a rancher with a heartbreaking secret.
He’s Hollywood royalty,
poised to take a chance that risks his reputation and his career.
Now that they’ve found each other, can he win her heart?

Anna Graves works hard helping to run her family’s Wyoming dude ranch. Still reeling from the tragic loss of her smokejumper fiancé in a horrific wildfire, she is content to hide from the world as she teaches horseback riding lessons to tourists by day and reads smutty romance novels by night.

When world-famous Scottish actor Angus McGregor needs to brush up his cowboy skills in preparation for his starring role in a new Western, he heads to Sweetwater Ranch in the boondocks of Wyoming. He is immediately fascinated by Anna, who won’t give him the time of day. Can he break down the self-protective wall she has built?

If you like hot cowboys, Scottish accents, and happily-ever-afters, you’ll love ANNA’S HEART, the third book in the Redheads & Ranchers series!

In this teaser, Anna meets Angus for the first time.

After lunch, Anna led her first beginners’ riding class of the new session. This time around, she had six eager young riders between the ages of five and twelve, and for two hours, she led them through their paces. By the end of the following week, each student would be able to groom and saddle his or her own horse, and they’d be competent enough to participate in the overnight trail ride and camp-out with their families.

When her riding class was over, Andy helped her untack her horses, and they worked together to feed and water the entire stable of fifteen equines.

“Guess that actor guy isn’t coming,” he commented as he and Anna left the barn and headed for the lodge.

Anna shrugged. “I guess not.”

“Simone was really looking forward to meeting him.”

“Maybe you should be relieved,” she grinned at her brother wryly. “Sounds like she might decide to just ride off with Angus McGregor.”

Andy held up his hands in mock surrender. “I just want to keep the pregnant lady happy.”

“Hang in there, not much longer now,” Anna observed. “Just a few more weeks.”

When they entered the lodge, several of Anna’s new students ran to greet her.

“Anna! Anna! This is my mom and dad!” cried the youngest of her students, a tiny towhead blonde named Ariel.

Anna grinned broadly. “Hi, Mom and Dad. It’s nice to formally meet you.”

The mother smiled. “She can’t stop talking about riding Rocket.”

“We named him Rocket kind of ironically. He’s really slow,” Anna laughed, thinking affectionately of the old bay.

“Well, Ariel had a good time. We’re excited about the camp-out at the end of next week,” the father said.

Anna nodded. “That’s usually the highlight of everybody’s stay.”

Across the room, Vanessa waved to Anna. “If you’ll excuse me,” she offered before heading off to find out what her mother wanted.

“A flyer came in the mail today. Founders’ Day is next week.”

Anna frowned slightly at the brightly colored page her mother thrust into her hands. The bulk of the page was a vintage photo of Main Street in Crystal Springs, overlayed with jaunty graphics declaring the annual Crystal Springs Founders’ Day celebration.

Back in the late 1860s, the nearby town of Crystal Springs had sprung up practically overnight as a mining boomtown. The coal vein had played out by the middle of the following century, but the small town was proud of its heritage. Each summer, they celebrated what they thought of as Founders’ Day with a parade down Main Street followed by a giant picnic, and capping off the evening with a family-friendly town dance.

There was a time when Anna looked forward to the annual event. Now, she scowled at the announcement.

“I’d like that put on the bulletin board on the front porch,” Vanessa said. “I’ll mention it at dinner, but I want to make sure all the guests know they’re invited to attend.”

Anna nodded and headed toward the front door.

“And Anna?” her mother called after her.

She stopped and turned around.

“I expect you to go this year.” Vanessa arched an eyebrow, daring her daughter to argue.

Anna stalked back to the reception desk. “I don’t want to go. Why do you insist that I go?”

“Because it’s time you started getting out, meeting people.”

Swallowing her rising irritation, Anna gritted her teeth. “I meet people.” She waved toward the guests wandering through the lodge’s lobby. “They’re all people.”

“You know what I mean.”

Huffing in frustration, Anna turned on her heel and headed back toward the door.

“You will go. I don’t want to hear any more about it.”

Wordlessly and without turning around, Anna waved the flyer in the air and marched out the door. Opening the glass front of the bulletin board, she silently fumed at her mother.

For fuck’s sake! I’m twenty-fucking-six years old! I don’t need to be told what to do and how to do it, where to go and when. I make my own decisions. Besides, there are always things that need to be done around the ranch. Everyone can’t go gallivanting into town. Somebody has to stay back and hold down the fort.

Part of her told her she was making way too much out of her mother’s request that she attend the celebration in town. But the rest of her was in no mood to be reasonable. She tacked up the flyer and closed the protective glass door, deciding she’d go remind her mother about the need for someone to stay behind during the festivities.

She turned abruptly and ran headlong into something solid. The next thing she knew, she and a tall red-haired man landed in a tangled heap on the front lawn.

“Oof,” he managed as he lay gasping for air.

“Oh my God, I’m so sorry! I didn’t see you standing there.” Anna scrambled to her feet and reached down to help the man stand.

Slowly, he allowed her to pull him up. Green-tinted Rayban aviators askew and a pair of bags strewn on the grass, he coughed slightly as he straightened to his full height.

Anna figured he had to be well over six feet tall, maybe as much as six and a half feet, judging by the way he towered over her five-foot-four frame.

“Are you okay?” she asked him.

He nodded, reaching to straighten his sunglasses and run his fingers through his red hair. “Aye, had the wind knocked out of me is all. And that’s a fine welcome, I must say,” he replied in a thick Scottish brogue.

Feeling her cheeks color, Anna reached to brush the dirt off the man’s sleeve. “I’m really sorry! It was totally my fault. I should have been watching where I was going.”

“Aye, you should have,” he grinned wryly, “but then I’d have missed being tackled by a bonnie lass such as yourself. Do you play rugby, perchance?” His laugh was hearty, almost infectious.

Mortified, Anna started to gather up his belongings, but he stopped her with a gentle hand on her arm. “I’ve got my bags, thanks.” He hoisted a large leather duffel bag onto his broad left shoulder and picked up a matching suitcase. “I have a reservation for McGregor. Do I check in here?”

“Um, yes,” Anna nodded. “Just this way.” Still blushing, she led the way up the front steps and into the lobby. With a pair of tortoiseshell-framed readers perched on the bridge of her nose, Vanessa Graves stood at the check-in desk efficiently tapping something on a keyboard. When she looked up and saw her daughter with their new guest, she smiled brightly.

“Mr. McGregor is checking in,” Anna said meekly, wishing she could melt through the floorboards.

“I’d be happy if you’d just call me Angus,” he said quickly.

“I’m Vanessa Graves. Welcome to Sweetwater Ranch, Mr. M–Angus,” Vanessa greeted him. “We’re happy to have you here.”

“I’m happy to be here. You have a lovely ranch, from what I’ve seen so far.” He glanced Anna’s way and she blushed furiously.

Mrs. Graves turned and retrieved a brass key from an old-fashioned wooden key rack behind the front desk. “Here you are. Cabin 6. Anna will take you there.”

She handed him the key and smiled cordially. “You’ll find a folder in your cabin with this week’s schedule. Once you settle in, I hope you take the opportunity to explore the ranch. And dinner is here in the dining room at 6:00.”

While Anna silently shot daggers at her mother, Angus’s full-wattage grin was charming. “That sounds perfect. Thank you, Mrs. Graves.”

He turned and looked at Anna expectantly.

“Oh, um, right this way.” She turned, shooting one last glare at her mother, and led their new guest back outside.

ANNA’S HEART by Pandora Spocks

ANNA’S HEART is available at your favorite online bookseller.
books2read.com/AnnasHeart

Weekend Excerpt–BROKEN HARTS

BROKEN HARTS is now LIVE at your favorite online bookseller!

A wedding on Valentine’s Day? It’s beyond cliché.

But it’s what Ali Hart’s niece Shannon wants. So Ali will wear the pink tulle bridesmaid’s dress, carry the rose and eucalyptus bouquet down the aisle, and keep her opinion to herself.

Ali is back in New York to get ready for the wedding, but her older sister and brother seize on her visit as the perfect time for Ali to make arrangements for their elderly father, who can no longer independently care for himself.

A navigational error puts Ali on a collision course with destiny. Now what?

*****
A wedding on Valentine’s Day? It’s perfect.
Unless you’re not positive that she’s the one for you.

In the dark recesses of his heart, Logan Pryce knows that Catherine von Hollen isn’t the love of his life. The daughter of his father’s business partner, they’ve known each other for years. She’s blonde, gorgeous, and everyone loves her. On paper, it’s perfect. On paper.

A chance encounter with a nameless redhead on a crowded subway platform causes Logan to question everything he thought his life was going to be. Will he stay with the safe bet, or will he take a chance on something more?

If you love your romance with a little heat and plenty of heart, you’re going to love Broken Harts!

Here’s a brand-new snippet from BROKEN HARTS.

Taking Logan’s hand, Ali led him back to the den where their drinks waited. They settled on the sofa, and Ali used the remote to click on the television. It was tuned to a nature documentary, and she turned the sound all the way down.

Logan handed her a mug and picked up the other one for himself. “Cheers,” he smiled, and they clinked glasses.

Ali closed her eyes as the hot, fragrant liquid rolled down her throat. The spices tickled her tongue while the whiskey warmed her chest. With another sip, the chill of the evening and the panic she had felt began to slip away.

“This is delicious.” Logan gestured with his mug and took another sip.

“It’s the best, especially on such a cold, nasty day,” Ali agreed. “I don’t have much need for a hot toddy in Florida, although sometimes we do get a cold snap in winter.”

Logan pressed his lips together as though suppressing a grin. “How cold does it get?”

“On a really cold day, it can get all the way down into the forties.” She shivered at the memory.

Logan laughed out loud. “Oh, the horror, how can you stand it?”

“Well, for there, it’s frigid,” Ali defended sheepishly. “It usually comes with a biting wind that goes right through you.”

He arched an eyebrow mischievously. “You realize, of course, that I’m from the Windy City, right?”

They both laughed softly. Then Ali sighed.

“Yeah. You were supposed to be back in the Windy City right now.”

Logan shrugged lightly. “Ah, well, things happen. It’s all good.”

“Were you supposed to be back for a reason? You said that this was just a quick trip.”

He waved vaguely. “There was a charity thing I was planning to attend. But again, there was no way I would leave you to deal with your dad lost out there in the cold. No way.” He shook his head definitively.

“So now what?” Ali asked with a soft sigh.

“I don’t know. I suppose that once my clothes are dry, I’ll go to a hotel. I found a flight that leaves first thing in the morning.”

Debating with herself, Ali chewed her lower lip in thought. She sipped her drink for some liquid courage and looked up at Logan. “You could stay here.” She watched to see his reaction.

He blinked slowly as if deliberating this new idea.

“We have a guest room, of course,” Ali added quickly. “But I wondered if you’d want to stay with me.” As soon as the words were out of her mouth, she wished she could bite them back.

“I mean, if you want to. But a hotel is always nice. Or whatever. Just…” Mentally, Ali cursed the blush that heated her face.

Logan pursed his lips and tilted his head slightly. “Did you know that when you blush, your freckles kind of stand out?”

Embarrassed, Ali fidgeted with her glass and looked away.

“And did you know,” he murmured as he leaned closer, “that you’re stunning?”

Reluctantly, Ali looked back up at him.

“Ali Hart, are you inviting me to spend the night with you?” He arched an eyebrow, and mischief sparkled in his blue eyes.

Feeling emboldened by his response, Ali suppressed a smile. “Well, you know, you’re a pretty great kisser. Now I’m wondering what else you’re good at.”

*****

In the still of pre-dawn, Logan gazed up at the ceiling of Ali’s bedroom and sighed contentedly. Her head rested on his shoulder as his right arm cradled her. His left arm curled beneath his head on the pillow.

At the sound of her steady breathing, he smiled. When he’d invited her to lunch, he’d had no thought of ending up in her bed.

He shifted his lips thoughtfully. Well, to say no thought wasn’t entirely accurate. He’d allowed the occasional notion or two to blossom into full-blown fantasy, fodder for a private jerk-off session in the shower here and there. And there had been a stray thought or three when she’d shucked her coat at the restaurant earlier in the day, that form-fitting sweater dress clinging to every curve most deliciously. His cock had certainly taken notice.

He allowed himself a silent whistle.

Still, he would never have broached the subject. Not on a day like today, with the drama of her father being lost. It would have felt manipulative, somehow.

But it had been Ali who had brought it up, Ali with that heated gleam in her soulful brown eyes, and he’d been helpless to respond in any other way than he had.

There on the sofa in the den, they had made out like two starving souls, each practically clawing at the other, lips desperately seeking and finding, until Logan thought he’d explode right there. With a knowing smile, Ali had stood up and taken his hand, leading him to her bedroom, where she shut and locked the door behind them.

In the privacy afforded in her room, Logan had shed all pretense of self-control, hurriedly tugging first at her clothes and then his own until they stumbled toward the bed in a tangle of discarded garments. He scarcely waited for her to retrieve a condom from her bedside table before he plunged himself into her.

He closed his eyes and replayed the moment in his mind, relishing her gasp in his ear as he took her that first time. He hadn’t lasted long. He had known he wouldn’t. It had been a long time.

Catherine usually couldn’t be bothered, and when she acquiesced, he usually ended up feeling like he’d had to talk her into having sex with him. Which was why he hadn’t bothered in months, preferring his own hand and a vibrant fantasy life.

That first time on the bed had been followed up in the shower, where he and Ali had adjourned to clean up. The memory of her perky tits, water dripping from her luscious, imminently suckable nipples, her water-slick, shapely ass… Softly, he whistled again as his cock stiffened at the memory of taking her a second time against the marble wall of the shower.

The third time had been different, much slower and more sensual as he’d gradually brought her to climax twice, each time with Ali whimpering softly as she attempted to stifle her orgasm.

Note to self, he thought. Next time, we go to a hotel. The thought pleased him. He wanted to hear Ali’s pleasure unfettered by the presence of other people in the house.

Next time.

Pressing a light kiss to the top of her head, his thoughts strayed back to when they had first arrived at the Hart’s apartment. Taking care of Ali’s father had involved a flurry of activity. Logan had stayed in the background as much as possible, grateful when Mrs. Smith offered him warm, dry clothes in place of the damp, clammy ones he had worn in the snow. While changing in the hallway bathroom, he had taken the opportunity to call Catherine to apprise her of his missed flight.

She had taken it as he’d known she would, anger reducing her conversation to short, clipped responses. No doubt there would be hell to pay when he returned home.

Of another thing, there was no doubt, as well. Logan couldn’t marry Catherine. He didn’t love her; it was as simple as that.

Honoring their hair-brained pledge had been a bad idea from the get-go, but at that low point in his love life, it had seemed like a reasonable consolation.

A hell of a reason to get married, he chided himself.

Ali shifted slightly, sighing softly in her sleep. Logan gazed down at her and held her closely, appreciating the sense of warmth that flooded his soul.

No, he couldn’t marry Catherine. He didn’t love her. He loved Ali. He knew it as surely as he knew his own name. And if he were honest, he’d known it since he’d first seen her in the subway station. He was utterly in love with Ali Hart.

The only thing to do was to call off the engagement. Logan resolved to do it as soon as he got home.

BROKEN HARTS by Pandora Spocks

BROKEN HARTS is available at your favorite online bookseller.
For a limited time, you can still take advantage of
the 99¢ special price.
books2read.com/BrokenHarts

Weekend Excerpt–HUNTER’S PRIDE

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.

HUNTER’S PRIDE is the second in the Redheads & Ranchers series, and it seems to be the ‘redheaded stepchild’ of the collection, which makes me a little sad. Hunter and Poppy have sizzling chemistry from the very beginning, and some sideways twists take the story in a completely unexpected direction.

Here’s a steamy little snippet.

The sun was slowly descending behind the mountains, and the vintage-style streetlamps were just beginning to blink on as Poppy and Hunter made their way back to the hotel.

They changed and headed to an upscale steak place on the next block. Over filet mignon and candlelight, they chatted quietly about their visit with Hunter’s grandfather and about their time in town.

After dinner, they returned to the hotel and found a corner table in the lounge. A local band was playing 80s and 90s acoustic covers, and Hunter ordered a Jim Beam neat while Poppy was thrilled to find her favorite Marlborough sauvignon blanc.

As they listened to the music and sipped their drinks, the pair exchanged heated glances. Poppy lightly strummed her fingers across the back of Hunter’s hand as the band launched into a Bryan Adams ballad.

Hunter leaned toward her, his breath tickling her ear and igniting goosebumps all over her body. “Are you ready to head upstairs?”

The flutter in her tummy was back, this time accompanied by a surge of moisture between her thighs. “Let’s go,” she nodded.

As soon as the door to their suite was closed, Hunter pressed Poppy against it, lifting her and wrapping her legs around his waist. Tangling his fingers in her red locks, he gently pulled her head back, exposing her neck which he nipped from just below her left ear to her collarbone.

She was powerless to stop the low moan that rolled up from her toes.

“I want you,” he hissed in her ear.

“Oh, yeah?” she responded breathlessly. “Then you should take me.”

He pulled her head back again, this time claiming her lips with bruising intensity. At the same time, he reached between the two of them and fondled the soaked space between her thighs.

Poppy gripped his shoulders tightly, gasping as she gave herself over to the sensation he created.

Hunter lightly nipped along her jawline to her ear. His voice was a low growl. “How attached are you to these panties?”

“What panties?” she panted.

He flashed a predatory grin, and his eyes sparkled. “Good answer.”

With a sharp tug, the scraps that had been her underwear floated to the floor. Hunter balanced her against the door as he reached down to his belt and fly. In one fluid motion, he was buried in her core.

Poppy gasped at the sudden intrusion, rocking her head back against the door. Hunter leaned in, pinning her between himself and the door as he pistoned into her, and she felt her moment rising.

“Oh, fu-” she breathed, and her words morphed into a garbled cry as she shattered in his arms.

After another couple of strokes, Hunter stilled deep inside her, grunting his own release. They remained as they were, gasping against the door. Voices from the hallway filtered through the wooden door and Poppy giggled lightly.

“Maybe we’d better take this party to the bedroom,” Hunter winked.

HUNTER’S PRIDE by Pandora Spocks

HUNTER’S PRIDE is available at your favorite online bookseller.
books2read.com/HuntersPride