Monday, January 25, 2016

One Summer by Rayne Forrest

Available January 25, 2016

One Summer

Holly Thomas has a simple plan for the summer - take care of her favorite aunt and celebrate Burkesville’s centennial. Her immediate attraction to the town’s newest resident quickly proves problematic. Joe Mercer’s keeping secrets behind his blue eyes.

Holly’s instincts are good. Joe Mercer’s reasons for coming to Burkesville are two-fold. On the surface he’s the pub owner he looks to be, but he’s also undercover for the government. Holly’s everything he wants in a woman and he’s trapped. He can’t confide to her he’s in the middle of this little covert assignment, and he can’t stay away from her. 

When the deal goes down, Joe scrambles to stay on the right side of everything. Holly has it all wrong but he’s in too deep to back out of the operation. It’s all coming to a head and he’ll be able to tell her everything – if he can just hold on to her for one more day.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
4 Hearts from The Romance Studio….
The author has written a really fine story of two people falling in love in a small town, with a little suspense for added interest. The climax of the book really makes this engrossing love story.
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The bright beam of headlights turned the raindrops falling around her to shimmering crystals. The Chevy slowed to a stop and when the passenger door swung open, she gratefully flung herself into the car as the heavens opened in a deluge. She greeted him, aware that she dripped water on his leather seat.
“Hey, Joe.”
“Hey, Holly.” He reached a long arm between the bucket seats and grabbed a sweatshirt.  She accepted his offering with murmured thanks and slipped it over her head, immediately warmed by soft fabric that was infused with his scent. It took every ounce of self-control she possessed to refrain from burying her nose in the fleece and inhaling deeply.
“Thanks.” She grinned at him. “Good morning, by the way.”
Joe grinned back at her. “It’s a better morning, now. Didn’t you know this storm was rolling through?”
“I thought I had time for my walk. The wind wasn’t blowing when I left the house.” She didn’t say anything as he turned onto Linden Drive, slowed, and turned into Aunt Naomi’s driveway. Someone had told him where she lived. It was a small town.
Of course, that meant he actually asked someone. Despite the cold rain a warm glow settled in her belly.
“Would you like to come in for coffee?” She wasn’t sure if she wanted him to say yes, or no, although yes would be infinitely more interesting. If he came in, she’d grab the chance to find out why he drove around town so early in the morning.
He regarded her evenly for a count of five then leaned towards her, his large hand warm on her chilled knee. “I’d love coffee, but I’m short on time.”
Holly forgot to breathe as that warm hand slid to the inside of her thigh and traveled to the edge of her shorts and impropriety before stopping. His blue gaze, locked with hers, darkened until she saw her reflection. Her belly tightened. Her joints suddenly loosened, surprising her with the swiftness of it. She shivered as her nipples tingled and peaked at the sound of his low, husky voice. Thank heavens he’d given her the sweatshirt and couldn’t observe her reaction. She didn’t want to give away too many of her secrets, no matter how sexy Joe Mercer looked.
“We have unfinished business, Holly.”
She agreed, most whole-heartedly.
Joe slipped his arm around her. Holly dropped her head onto his shoulder and tipped her chin up to him. His lips came down on hers and she opened to him, a silent invitation to plunder at will.
His searing hot mouth tasted of coffee, mint, and Joe. Electricity jolted through her belly, settling to a simmering boil at the apex of her thighs.  She couldn’t pretend she hadn’t wanted this and flicked her tongue across his lower lip. He nibbled at the corner of her mouth, teasing her. She fisted her hands in his shirt and tugged on him. His lips gentled, caressing hers softly, moving on hers, whisper soft, and so very, very warm. 
How long he held her in his spell she didn’t know, or care. The vibrations beneath her ceased. The sound of the rain was suddenly louder. She was aware of it in a vague sort of way, registering it and tossing it away as unimportant. Joe’s arms were around her lifting her. His lips were still locked to hers.
He was so warm, so big and solid. The feel of him, hard against her hip, brought her up short when she wiggled closer. Holly pulled away and opened her eyes, blinking him back into focus.
He grinned, eyes sparkling, his smile as unrepentantly male as his erection pressed hard between them. His arms tightened around her, a surprising shelter against the sudden urge to flee his strength. 
“Is that your Aunt Naomi?”
Holly jerked and the world suddenly refocused. The silken web he’d woven around her dissolved and she found herself sprawled across his lap.
She looked out the fogged windshield to see Aunt Naomi standing on the porch, bundled up in a sweater and calmly sipping her coffee while she watched the sideshow in her driveway. Her equilibrium returned. Darn reality, anyway.
“That’s her.” She narrowed her eyes at him. “It’s a neat trick getting a girl onto your lap with the gear shifter thingy and the steering wheel in the way, Joe. Practice it much?”

She shifted her weight and froze as he winced, only to move again more cautiously so as not to injure a few of his body parts he’d probably not want injured. He grinned at her again, a big, open, smug male smile. She slid off his lap. It was her turn to grin as he pulled the edges of his black leather jacket in across the front of his jeans. 

“Thanks for the ride, Joe,” she said with her best attempt at sounding sultry. He laughed softly at the double entendre. 

“My pleasure, Holly. Honest.” His hand closed over hers, warm and strong.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

One Summer is now available at these online book sellers:

Saturday, January 23, 2016

The Curiosity Shoppe by Rayne Forrest (MSS #125)

Welcome to another My Sexy Saturday! My Sexy Saturday is the weekly blog hop for some great excepts from all corners of the romance genre. This week - sexy shapeshifters.

When Zeb follows a telepathic call, he gets a lot more than he bargained for! Enjoy!
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Semele didn’t answer immediately. Her fingers traced the treasure trail of dark hair than ran down his center. She splayed her fingers, then closed them, trapping the curly hairs between. She lifted her hands allowing the short, springy hairs to escape.
Yes, Zebadiah. I like this.
He laughed wickedly. Her mental voice was a smug little purr. She ran her fingers through his chest hair once more. Her fingers slipped under his waistband, brushing the tip of his dick. His eyes wanted to cross.
Her eyes widened. She blinked several times, rapidly, and then swallowed.
“What’s wrong, Semele? Cat got your tongue?”
Zeb could almost hear her thinking about that. She met his gaze and ran one questing finger across his tip again. His cock pulsed, swelled. He’d only thought he was hard before. 
    I wish to see all of you. 
  ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Cajun Zebadiah LaCroy is a long way from home. Infected with a bad case of wanderlust, Zeb’s been working on an intergalactic merchant ship. He’s seen all manner of strange worlds and stranger beings. When his ship docks at Station Janus, Zeb searches for a gift for his sister back home and finds more than he bargained for. Come and see, a female voice calls telepathically to him. Never one to be able to deny his innate curiosity, Zeb can’t resist. He’s caught in her spell.

When he finally sees her, hears her say his name, Zeb knows Semele is telling him the truth. They are bonding exclusively to each other. For the bonding to be complete, they must mate. The only thing is, she’s not quite human.

THE CURIOSITY SHOPPE is available at these online booksellers:
All Romance eBooksAmazonBarnes & Noble / NOOK BooksiTunes/Apple,
KoboOmniLit BooksScribd.

Rayne Forrest

Be sure to check out all the My Sexy Saturday blogs on the list below. 

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Moving forward in a brave? new world

I'm pretty smart, not to brag about myself, but like most folks I can get caught off guard.  In the publishing world, what's considered "the norm" shifts with the wind. My slow, careful approach to indie publishing got an unpleasant kick recently.

On January 2, 2016, Amber Quill Press announced they were closing effective March 30, 2016. I only have two books there as Rayne Forrest, but my alter ego has about forty. To say this doesn't make me a happy camper is an understatement. 

Amber Quill has been great to work with. No drama, just good, publishing. Did I agree with everything they did, business-wise? No, but nothing was huge enough to be a deal breaker. Nothing they did was a "red flag" item. They valued integrity in a business that's sorely lacking in that commodity. So I was content to go indie on the Rayne Forrest titles and go through AQP for my alter ego. 

But if there's one thing the publishing industry can't abide it's contentment. The rise of Amazon and indie publishing is striking death blows to small, competent publishers (with huge and valuable mailing lists) across the board. In the long run, it won't be just small publishers and booksellers that suffer. The voices of individual authors are fading, taking with them great works. It's simply too hard for them to persevere.  

Nothing can replace my experience and history at Amber Quill Press. I learned and learned and learned from Trace Zaber & Co.   

And I'm a better person, and writer, for the time spent with them. 


Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Finishing the Work-in-Progress - IWSG

January 6, 2016

Picking up the Career Pieces

The Insecure Writer’s Support Group

Happy Epiphany! Today marks the end of the Twelve Days of Christmas, sometimes called Twelfth Night, and the historical arrival of the Magi bearing gifts. Many people leave the Christmas decorations up through Epiphany. I’m not usually one of them although if I can’t get to un-decorating on New Year’s Day, I’ll wait until after Epiphany.

The word “epiphany” means “revelation.”  Well, I’d like to have an epiphany as to why it’s been so difficult for me to pick up the pieces of my writing career. Publishing houses aside, that is. I know those reasons and they start with I’m the one doing the work and someone else is making the money.

I hold the rights to all the Rayne Forrest works, save two, and I think that’s a good thing. I’ve been indie publishing the stories and it’s a lot easier than a publisher would have you believe. So why the hesitation in finishing the new work-in-progress? It’s currently at 12,000 words and if I applied myself, I could finish it by the end of the month. I don’t have writer’s block on the creativity spectrum, so what is it?

Finding that answer is something I need to work toward in 2016.


Saturday, January 2, 2016

Looking ahead in 2016

Celebrating a New Year is a mixed bag for me. I suppose that's because I don't view a day on the calendar as the magic start to a chance for a "do over." January 1, 2016 doesn't dump us out at the same spot January 1, 2105 did. We've moved forward to a different place. There is no "do over." There is only "do." What do I want to do in 2016? More appropriately, what do I want to accomplish in 2016?

Much of the same as in 2015 so it seems. The plan is to keep chipping away at the manuscripts until I can get each of them back out in the world. With any luck, a new story or two will get finished. It's not like I don't have them started.  

I still have the day job to contend with, but I'm counting down the days until I can retire. Six years seems like a long time, but time flies. Case in point is we've just entered 2016. How did that happen? 

This new year may also be the year I do the A to Z Blogging Challenge. I've thought about it several times so maybe it's time. We shall see, come April. 

January 4 marks a year since A Hero's Bargain went out as an indie release. I've always loved this story. Ryder Vaughan doesn't seem to be hero material, but in the end, he reaches within, makes the hard choices, and carries them through. I bought the cover for A Hero's Bargain and it's what convinced me I had to learn to make my own. 

I joined the Insecure Writer's Support Group in 2015. It's a monthly blog hop where writer's share thoughts and experiences. I'm not sure I'm insecure, I rather think it's the opposite, but connecting with other writers is important. I'm pretty sure I'm going to stick with the IWSG through 2016. 

Yes, I do have some things to think about in the New Year. Not to do over, but to continue. There's nothing magic about it from where I sit. It's just life. I'd best be about it and not let a Saturday get away from me.