Monday, September 25

*** 5 DAYS OF NICOLA RENDELL *** Professed

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At a secret masked ball at Yale, Naomi Costa is literally swept off her stiletto-blistered feet by a man with a killer jawline, a perfect body, and an even-better kiss. They bust out of an emergency exit and have axis-shaking sex. He pours whiskey in her belly button and after they run out of condoms, they have to get creative. That kind of sex.

The next day, she learns that he is none other than Dr. Benjamin Beck, a brand new member of the Yale faculty and the hottest thing to happen to academia since… well, ever. She has to take his damned junior seminar to graduate, but it gets worse. He’s also her College Master: her boss, her advisor, her everything. And he’s just moved in, right downstairs.

They can’t stay away from each other. They're either fusion or fission or both. They’re making out in libraries, hiding notes between stones, and sneaking off to nautically themed AirBnbs. Hear that sound? It’s the academic code of ethics going up in flames.

If they're found out, he’ll lose his job and his reputation. She'll lose her scholarship and be forced to return to the life of lobster fishing that she thought she’d escaped.

And they will be found out, yes they will.

So what the hell are they going to do?






















The next thing that happens is a familiar smell. At first, I can’t place it. It’s chemical and yet sweet…

Marker. He’s got a marker. My whole body gives a sudden, excited shake. I think he’s going to write on me. Somewhere, something, his handwriting in ink on my skin.

God, yes, yes, yes. Is that a thing? Writing on skin? Because that’s so hot.

He’s hovering over me. I can feel the mattress depressing on either side of my body, under his knees. “What are you going to write?”

There’s an airy breath. I know he must be smiling. He smiles so much. I love that about him.

“What I want to write is mine on every inch of your skin,”he says. I feel a touch on my arm, and at first I think it’s the marker, but it’s warm and soft. His fingertip. He trails it up my forearm, lingering on the shallow depression above my elbow. “Mine, mine, mine,”he says. “All over you. A thousand times.”

I can see it in my head. Mine everywhere. Big and little. Sloppy and neat. “Please. I’d love that,”I whisper.

“I want to get a jar of ink,”he says. Now his palm is flat on my stomach. “And put my prints all over here.”When he says here, which he says slowly, he slides his fingertips down my abdomen.

All I can do is nod. I have no way to tell him how much I want that.

The mattress squeaks a little as he lowers himself down on me. His weight is heavenly on my legs. The feel of his chinos pressing into my bare skin. The agony of knowing his beautiful cock is right there, not six inches from pressing into me. It drives me right out of my mind.

“But there’s really one word that needs writing first. Before all the rest.”

The words line up in my head like flashcards. Trying to guess. But then I just let it go. Let him do it. Let him take control.

The tip of the marker is cold on my skin. It begins on my right side with a downward stroke.

I, is what I think at first, but then there’s a curve at the top. And a kick-out. R.

Another downwards stroke. I again? Nope. Three right-to-left lines. E.

Oh God, I think I know. Diagonal stroke, and a second. He makes the crossbar just over my belly button with agonizing slowness. A.

I know the word. But I just want to savor every last drop of this. Downward stroke, half circle. D.

Small check mark on my left abdomen, small downward stroke. Y. Already I’m nodding.

“Are you?”he asks.

And I tell him a long stream of Yesses straight through the squiggle and point of a ?

READY?

My hands are in tight fists, my nails pressing into my palms. Whatever he’s going to do to me, if it hurts or teases or pulls or pinches, I want him to do it. All of it. “Ready,”I whisper back.

The next thing I hear is a snapping. Rattling of markers. Another uncapping. Now he’s closer to me. I feel his forearm over the soft skin of mine. This is harder to make out, it’s on my wrist and small. “What does it say?”

He doesn’t answer at first. The little marks continue on my wrist. I hold very still, trying to get a sense of what it could be. “Ben,”I whisper, “Tell me.”

“It’ll drive you crazy not knowing, I’ll bet,”he says when he’s done. I hear him cap the marker shut.

God, yes it will. “You don’t want me distracted.”

His laugh is quiet and smug. I love it. “It says Property of Master Beck.










































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Nicola Rendell writes dirty romantic comedy. She likes a stiff drink and a well-frosted cake. She loves to cook, sew, and play the piano. She realizes that her hobbies might make her sound like an old lady and she’s totally okay with that. She grew up in Taos, New Mexico; after receiving a handful of degrees from a handful of places, she now works as a professor in New England. An Amazon bestseller, her work has been featured in USA Today's Happy Ever After and the Huffington Post. She is represented by Emily Sylvan Kim at the Prospect Agency.

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***RELEASE BOOST*** Pitch Dark by A.M Wilson and Alex Grayson

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Something sinister lurks...

Pitch Dark by A. M. Wilson & Alex Grayson is LIVE and it's exclusive to Amazon!

Kindle Unlimited members can read Pitch Dark for #FREE

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BLURB:
One girl disappeared. After fifteen years, her cold lifeless body was found on the damp forest floor. Not an inch of her was unmarked by the horrors she endured. Alone, malnourished, abused in horrific ways; this was how she died. One girl was found walking the streets, covered in dirt and scars. She had no memory of who she was, where she came from, or what happened to her. Even though the marks on her body attested to years of heinous abuse, her strength shone through at every turn. Revenge and justice were sworn. Years of searching brought up nothing but dead ends. Detective Niko James was too late to save his childhood friend, but he vows not to let down another. The clock is ticking and the trail is pitch dark. 


PD_BOOST_2 About A.M. and Alex: Avid readers and writers of suspenseful romances, both A.M. and Alex enjoy torturing their readers with twisted tales and crazy dark scenarios.  

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*** RELEASE BLITZ *** Touched by Mara White

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-Does your sister let you touch her, Gemini?
-Barely, but, yes, more than anyone else. I remember even in preschool when the teacher would grab her hand, she’d stare at the spot where their skin connected as if it were an affront to her existence. Just stand there and glare like she wanted to hurt someone.
-Junipera suffers from a rare phobia.
-Please, what does June not suffer from?
-When did she start chasing storms?
-In third grade she started obsessing about the rain. Full blown? I’d say after hurricane Katrina she never looked back. And she didn’t just chase them, June became those wild storms.

Junipera and Gemini Jones, Irish twins born during the month of June, survive a childhood of neglect and poverty by looking out for one another. Destined for a group home, the girls are rescued by a rich aunt and uncle who move them from Northern Minnesota to Fairfield, Connecticut. One sister thrives while the other spins out of control. A violent assault leaves Gemini searching for clues, but what she finds might be questions that are better left unanswered.


























Praise for Touched


“Fresh, raw, relevant. TOUCHED slips under your skin with lush prose, unforgettable characters, and a story like no other.”
        -Leylah Attar, New York Times best-selling author


“Hauntingly beautiful and downright emotional, White grabs you by the soul in her latest novel, Touched, and leaves an indelible mark."
-K. Bromberg, New York Times best-selling author

“Mara White has crafted characters so real and complex, they live and bleed. Watching their story unfold was heartbreaking, beautiful, and riveting. Touched is stunning work.”
    -Nikki Sloane, Best-selling author of the Blindfold Club Series

“Touched is a truly beautiful book. It's raw, real, and possessing of a quiet poetry.”
        -Emma Scott, Best-Selling author of the Full Tilt Duet

"I can confidently say, without a shred of doubt, that this story and these people will stay with me for the rest of my life. I bow down, Mara White. You wrote a category 5 masterpiece."
-BB Easton, Bestselling Author

“A phenomenal, mesmerizing and unforgettable masterpiece!
This story blew me away! I cannot put into words how beautiful this story was! Absolutely astonishing! A must read!”
    -The Book Queen

“The writing is voracious and hungry and insatiable. Touched is a story that will devour you as you stuff your face with it. I'm not only touched, I'm digested. Just read it.”
    -Suanne Laqueur, Best-Selling author of the Fish Tales Series
































































Kettling, Minnesota
1985


If she lined her spine up perfectly with the porch railing, she could balance. One leg on the porch, the toe of her sneaker just touching, the other dangling maybe two feet above the scraggly grass and the house’s foundation. Her view when she rested her head all the way back was half of the porch roof overhang and half of a deceptively sunny blue sky that wasn’t as warm as it pretended. Still, she wore shorts and a t-shirt with a stretched-out neckline. Some other kid’s faded camp shirt, found at the Goodwill, advertising a canoe ride Gem never in her life got to go on.
Fuck them. Who cared? She didn’t want their stupid camp anyway.
It was summer and Gem wasn’t going anywhere except to the front porch, the creek, the gas station for candy and maybe to the lake to swim if she were lucky. Her sister June wouldn’t be going either. But June had Maggie and Maggie’s mom Charlene who was generous and responsible; she’d pick June up and bring her over to their house for the day, feed her, and sometimes even give her clothes.
Smack!
Gem struck a mosquito on her exposed thigh. Her legs were bruised. Scabs decorated her knees like a relief map, little brown islands on a white sea of skin.
Both girls had birthdays this month. Gem would be turning ten and her little sister June, nine. They were Irish twins, born twelve months apart. They left their father when they were just babies, or maybe their father left them. The story changed every time their mother told it.
Charlene beeped the horn of her rusted Buick as she turned onto 5th Street. All the windows in the car were wide open and neither Maggie nor June wore seatbelts. Charlene blasted the radio and sang along to “Eye of the Tiger,” while smoke from her cigarette swirled through the car. Both girls slid across the long backseat as she took the corner. They were too wrapped up in their Pretty Ponies to notice. Charlene beeped again once she was in front of the house and Gem sat up on the railing. The world swung at a dangerous angle so she locked her thighs around the railing and pushed one sneakered toe between the rungs as she waited for the dizziness to subside.
“Hey pretty girl!” Charlene sang to Gem. She waved from the car but didn’t get out or turn down the radio. Gem watched her light another long skinny cigarette as soon as she extinguished the smoking one in the ashtray. Charlene smelled like cigarette smoke, Charlie perfume and Aqua Net hairspray. Charlene’s hair was naturally big and she teased it even higher.
“Hey Charlene, hey Maggie.” Gem waved back at them as June knocked open the car door with her hip and stuck one bare foot out onto the curb.
“Shoes are in her backpack,” Charlene said to Gem. Maggie was up on her knees, half of her whole body leaning out of the car window as she said goodbye to June. “I can take her all day on Saturday. You can come too if you want. You don’t have to play with the girls, just watch TV if you want?” Charlene said. Gem would love to jump at the chance. Have someone to talk to, watch her and June, feed them—it all sounded too good to be true. She always had a nagging feeling in the back of her mind that Charlene must want something from them if she was so nice.
“I’ve got stuff to do,” Gem lied. “But thanks. June can go if she wants to.” Every time she spoke to Charlene she felt like an amateur, a fraud. She was used to pretending to be nice, to be happy, two things she felt very rarely. Instinctively she knew that those were qualities adults desired from her and her sister, so she put them on like ill-fitting clothes in their presence and shrugged them off as soon as they were out of earshot. Charlene never questioned why it was always Gem taking care of June and the one to give permission. She didn’t ask questions about their mother; she’d heard it all in town. The woman was a deadbeat—too wrapped up in herself to take care of her own.
“Have fun?” Gem asked June as she marched up the steps. June stepped gingerly on the third one because it was rotten in the middle and a heavy foot on the suspect step could easily crash through it. Her dirty pink bag with the long strings was thrown over her shoulder. A stripe of sunburn swept across her nose and cheeks. Her lips were chapped and her hair was tangled.
“Did Charlene feed you lunch?” Gem asked. June was a quiet kid, not much of a talker. She nodded instead. Gem wanted to ask her what she’d eaten but she was afraid of making herself hungry. June liked kid food. Mac ‘n’ cheese, Spaghetti-Os, grilled cheese on Wonder bread, crinkle cut potato chips, even hot dogs. Luckily, those were the kinds of things Charlene usually fed her. Gem, on the other hand, had a taste for real food. She rarely got it.
Gem slid down to the floor, where June sat and emptied out her bag. She had treasures from Maggie’s house. Some marbles, a few Pretty Ponies, their hair braided and twisted in a tangle of elastic bands. There was a Jolly Rancher that looked like it had been sucked on once and then slipped back into the wrapper.
“Mom home?” June asked her.
“Nope,” Gem answered. Their mother Anne was out most of the time. She worked a lot, she got lost, she met men and forgot she had kids at home, or at least that’s what Gem and June deduced from her behavior. They sat on the porch brushing through the pony’s hair, stretching their legs out to the railing, both of their backs up against the house.
“Want to jump rope?” June asked. She pulled a wound-up jump rope out of her backpack. The girls stood and stretched their arms and backs, sauntered down the steps to the sidewalk. The apartment building across the street was filled with “lowlifes” as they’d heard their mother call them. Young people, poor people, who got drunk and rowdy more often than not. They were coming out now, sitting on the steps or the folding chairs on the lawn. A boom box attached to an orange extension cord ran back in through the front door like a snake’s tongue.
June jumped to the beat of the music instead of the rhymes they usually chanted. Her blond hair bounced all over her face; she needed a bath. Gem could see that the bottoms of her feet were covered in dirt and it was thick under her nails. She probably hadn’t brushed her teeth last night either, fallen asleep sucking on a Jolly Rancher in the middle of her tongue. Gem was too tired to care. She counted to fourteen and June stumbled.





















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Mara White is a contemporary romance and erotica writer who laces forbidden love stories with hard issues, such as race, gender and inequality. She holds an Ivy League degree but has also worked in more strip clubs than even she can remember. She is not a former Mexican telenovela star contrary to what the tabloids might say, but she is a former ballerina and will always remain one in her heart. She lives in NYC with her husband and two children and yes, when she’s not writing you can find her on the playground.

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*** EXCERPT REVEAL *** Show Me The Way by A.L. Jackson

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The first stand-alone novel in A.L. Jackson's brand-new Fight for Me series...

Coming October 2nd

"This book is absolutely perfect.” - Corinne Michaels, New York Times Bestselling Author

The first sexy, captivating, stand-alone novel in the brand-new FIGHT FOR ME series from NYT & USA Today Bestselling Author A.L. Jackson . . .
Rex Gunner. As bitter as he is beautiful.
The owner of the largest construction company in Gingham Lakes has been burned one too many times. His wife leaving him to raise their daughter was the last blow this single dad could take. The only woman he’ll let into his heart is his little girl.
Rynna Dayne. As vulnerable as she is tempting.
She ran from Gingham Lakes when she was seventeen. She swore to herself she would never return. Then her grandmother passed away and left her the deed to the diner that she once loved.
When Rex meets his new neighbor, he knows he’s in trouble.
She’s gorgeous and sweet and everything he can’t trust.
Until she becomes the one thing he can’t resist.
One kiss sends them tumbling toward ecstasy.
But in a town this size, pasts are bound to collide. Caught in a web of lies, betrayal, and disloyalty, Rex must make a choice.
Will he hide behind his walls or will he take the chance . . .
© 2017 A.L. Jackson Books
Tension roiled between us. That tether pulled taut. Drawing us closer. I swallowed around it and reached for the latch. He was quick to open his door, jumping out and rounding to my side before I had time to step out of his massive truck. He helped me down, and his hand scorched where he aided me by holding on to my elbow.
“Let me walk you to the door. Last thing I need to be worried about is you here by yourself and some asshole taking advantage of you.”
He quirked this belly-flopping grin that pierced me like an arrow. “Unless of course that asshole is me.”
He barely angled his head to the side. There was something so endearing and self-deprecating about it. Everything about him right then was at odds with the surly, bear of a man I’d met weeks ago, the man exposing himself, layer by layer.
I lifted my chin, both in strength and vulnerability, tossing all the uncertainties and questions out into the open. “Should I be afraid?”
“Yeah, you should be.” His response was hard, but there was no missing the fact his irritation was aimed at himself. He set his palm on the small of my back, helping me through the gravel drive in my heels, an inch behind as we ascended the porch steps.
We crossed the planks. That tension wound higher with each step until we were nothing but needy pants at my door. Slowly, I turned around to face him.
His presence sent a ripple of energy vibrating across the floorboards, the overwhelming sight of him the owner of my breath.
He stood beneath the faint glow of the hurricane lamp that hung outside the door. A sculpture of sinewy muscle and raw strength, forged through years of obvious physical labor. Every inch of him was rugged, from those roughened, callused hands to the crinkles set deep at the edges of his eyes.
The man was a carving of pure, daunting beauty.
“What exactly am I supposed to be afraid of, Rex?” My brow twisted, and my voice quieted with the admission. “Because when I’m around you, the last thing I feel is afraid.”
“I fuck everything up, Rynna, and the only thing I’ve got to offer you is my mess. I can’t do this.”
Restraint rumbled in his chest, the sound so deep I felt it shake the ground beneath my feet.
I gently cupped one side of his rugged face. “I’m not afraid.”
It was a promise.
An appeal.
“You should be,” he grated. “Warned you, my shit doesn’t ever end well.”
“Maybe that’s a chance I’m willing to take.”
He groaned and he planted his hands high above my head. The man panted above me, torn, desperate, his nose just brushing mine. “God damn it, Rynna. God damn it.”
I felt the moment he broke. When the thread pulled too tight and this mesmerizing man snapped. His mouth descended on mine.
Overpowering.
Overwhelming.
Dizzying.
Lips and tongue and nips of teeth.
And those hands. They were on my face. My neck. My waist. Somehow, I managed to hold on to him and spin away as I fumbled with the lock. He pressed against my backside, his cock against my bottom, and his mouth leaving a trail of fire at the side of my neck. We stumbled into the darkness of my house, breaking apart as I turned to face him.
The only light trickled down from the lamp I’d left on upstairs.
Slowly, he clicked the door shut behind him. We stood there, two feet away from each other, staring.
Chests heaving.
Before we collided.
A tangle of tongues and bodies.
The man frantic, trying to touch me everywhere.
“What am I doing? Fuck, what am I doing?” he muttered incoherently, kissing me deeper. Madder. Wilder.
I pushed up on my toes and tore my mouth from his so I could kiss down the strong column of his throat. His head thudded back against the door, his entire body pressing against it as if he needed it to keep him standing.
He grated my name, and I kept kissing at his throat while I worked free the button on his jeans, hands shaking.
Every reservation spun out of control.
Out of reach.
It was only spurred further when the defined muscles of his abdomen jumped and twitched beneath my touch, when he mumbled, “You’re killing me, Rynna. Fucking killing me.”
Desire rippled from him in heady waves.
And I felt so brave and bold, my kisses brazen as I nipped at the hollow of his throat.
Before I could consider it—the ramifications and the repercussions and the distinct threat to my heart—I dropped to my knees.
I refused to think of anything but setting him free.
Hoping he’d find a little of that freedom in me.

Giveaway

A.L. Jackson is the New York Times & USA Today Bestselling author of contemporary romance. She writes emotional, sexy, heart-filled stories about boys who usually like to be a little bit bad.
Her bestselling series include THE REGRET SERIES, CLOSER TO YOU, and BLEEDING STARS novels. Watch for A.L. Jackson’s upcoming novel, SHOW ME THE WAY, the first stand-alone novel in her brand-new FIGHT FOR ME SERIES.
If she’s not writing, you can find her hanging out by the pool with her family, sipping cocktails with her friends, or of course with her nose buried in a book.
Be sure not to miss new releases and sales from A.L. Jackson - Sign up to receive her newsletter http://smarturl.it/NewsFromALJackson or text “aljackson” to 24587 to receive short but sweet updates on all the important news.

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