Friday, November 24, 2017

Exclusive Excerpt: The Financier


Giveaway Alert!

THE FINANCIER

Nick Dawes just had to go and prove something to himself. The brilliant moneyman of the Hudson Kings is in deeeep trouble after losing $20 million during a “freelance” heist, and now a Russian crime boss wants the money and Nick’s head. Nick needs to make himself scarce—and find someone to babysit his fish. Someone like lush, gorgeous Jane MacGregor, who might just be the death of him . . .

After being swindled by her jerk of an ex, Jane can’t say no to house-sitting a luxurious Fifth Avenue penthouse. The only downfall—aside from Nick’s tendency to show up covered in bruises and blood—is an increasingly strong attraction to her superhot and expensively suited-up new boss. Never make the same mistake twice.

But when Nick’s dangerous profession crashes in on Jane’s quiet little world, all hell breaks loose. And Jane is about to find out just what kind of man she’s falling for.


Excerpt:
From the moment they left the car in the courtyard and entered the building, chaos ensued. Jane and the puppy followed Cecily and her boyfriend, Shane, into a room that Jane managed to register as being full of very, very attractive men. Ally suddenly dropped back behind Jane. A waifish redheaded girl in a black jumpsuit launched a mile-a-minute speech at a muscular guy wearing a band T-shirt about how inappropriate it was that “civilians” were all piling into the “war room.” At least it sounded like she said “war room.” 

Through the drama Jane finally pegged Mr. Dawes leaning against a desk next to a guy she recognized from photos as Cecily’s brother Dex. 

Jane had fully intended to lead with an admittedly pissy-sounding take on the phrase “Say hello to your new dog, Mr. Dawes!” But when he stood up and came toward her, she realized he looked like death. The most beautiful, bruised, sad, sexy version of death you could ever imagine. He was just a mess of bruises, cuts, and bandages, plus he had an end-of-the-road look in his eyes that just cut her to the bone. 

“You look terrible,” she blurted instead.

“Yesterday was a rough day.” 

“Yesterday I called and yelled at you,” Jane said. 

“Yeah, that was actually a highlight,” he said. 

Jane stared at Nick; he stared back at her. And then he smiled. 

“This is where you work?” she asked. “The Armory?” 

“Sometimes.” 

It was then Jane noticed that the dog wasn’t pulling against her hold anymore. The dog was sitting by Mr. Dawes’s feet, tail wagging, excitedly nuzzling the pocket of his cargo pants like he expected there to be a treat therein. Mr. Dawes was still staring at her, but his hand was absently petting the dog’s head. They looked . . . suspiciously . . . like . . . old friends. “You’ve already met,” she said. 

“Yeah. This is Rochester. My neighbor’s dog.” 

A sinking sensation pooled in Jane’s stomach. “You didn’t order a new dog.” 

“No dog. Like I told you yesterday.” 

Jane winced. She could feel herself getting hot all over, and not in a good way. 

“You okay there, Jane?” 

“I’m aware that extreme embarrassment is not my best look.” 

“I’m not looking my best either,” Mr. Dawes said. 

Jane’s eyes went back to examining the damage to his face and body. “Dangerous people?” 

“It’s my problem alone. It’s not going to touch you, Jane,” he said very seriously.

“I wasn’t thinking that,” she said. 

He relaxed a little. 

“I’m sorry. I misinterpreted.” She gestured lamely to Rochester, who was pawing at Mr. Dawes’s abdomen, clearly hoping for a tussle. “He came with a suitcase and a lady who looked like a breeder or something.” 

“I like to dog-sit. Especially like goldens. Known Rochester since he was weaned. He’s almost a year old now. My neighbor doesn’t give me notice anymore—just comes over, and if I’m there, I’m there. If I’m not, she takes him to someone else or boards him. Guess you were there, so . . .” 

He likes to dog-sit. Jane watched as Mr. Dawes led the dog into an adjacent conference room, knelt on the ground and started playing with him. It was a display she would have liked to enjoy from the comfort of a plush velvet chair, with a bucket of popcorn—yes, butter, please. Unfortunately, that was not to be. 

The redhead made her way over to Jane’s side, giving unusually wide berth to an Ally-Dex conversation as she passed. She’d obviously made peace with the situation in the, uh, war room, because she said to Jane in a friendly enough voice, “Hi, I’m Missy.” 

“I’m Jane. Mr. Dawes’s fish sitter. Well, I think I got a promotion to pet sitter. Although come to think of it, I didn’t get a raise.” 

“I know who you are,” Missy said. “And since you’re here, I need to make sure you’re cool with everything.” 

Jane got the impression that meant a lot of things. Not just “Jane, are you okay with the weirdness?” More like “Jane, we need to feel okay that you know about the weirdness.” Though Jane couldn’t imagine what would happen if the answer ended up being no. 

So, she and Missy talked for a while, each of them keeping one eye on the Nick Dawes Show playing live through the glass windows of the conference room. Missy asked her a lot of questions, which Jane had no trouble answering. Questions that basically took the pulse of how comfortable Jane was with how much she already knew, or which prodded Jane to reveal additional information that perhaps she shouldn’t know but had figured out. 

Missy also asked her not to leave the room without an escort. If Jane was supposed to think this was all too strange and suspicious to deal with, these people were going to be disappointed. And they should know better; they’d already “vetted” her for Nick Dawes’s job and obviously decided that her questionable parents weren’t enough to keep her from being invited into—if not the inner circle where Ally and Cecily lived—at least one of the rings next to it. Weirdness is relative, thought Jane. I am not one to be spooked

She suspected there was an intersection between her boss being a mercenary in one part of his life and some sort of investment banker or fund manager in the other. She knew Cecily’s fiancĂ©, Shane, had skills in a variety of areas, including stunt driving and hand-to-hand combat. Mr. Dawes undoubtedly did tricky things with money. Hopefully, he did not steal from the poor and elderly, because that would be a deal breaker. Not that she had any business wondering what her deal breakers with her boss would be in the first place. 

The more Jane listened to Missy talk (vaguely) and ask questions (pointedly), the calmer she felt. Nick Dawes might be a white-collar mercenary with the ability to use his expertise for things Missy referred to as “gigs” and “missions,” but he also liked to roll around on the floor and snuggle with a dog. 

Roll around. And snuggle. 

Live and let live, Mr. Dawes. If you expect me to have concerns about your mercenary ties, you are sorely mistaken. 
***

Author Biography
Liz Maverick is a bestselling and award-winning author and adventurer whose projects have taken her from driving trucks in Antarctica to working behind the scenes on reality-TV shows in Hollywood. Known for her smart, funny, and emotional romance novels with fast-paced plots, Liz has written more than fifteen books. Her bestselling book Wired was a Publishers WeeklyBook of the Year, and Liz also created the USA Today bestselling Crimson City series.

Liz currently lives happily ever after in Brooklyn, New York, with her daughter and husband, and loves to stay in touch with readers through her website, www.LizMaverick.com.

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Wednesday, November 22, 2017

The Quiet Ones

With: J. L. Lora

Congratulations to "Christine B.", the winner in J.L.'s giveaway. Thank you to all who participated!

You know that saying it’s the quiet ones you gotta look out for? It has special meaning for me and my characters. A few weeks ago, Made, The Trinity Book 2, went live.  The heroine in my book, Gia, is one those women. People often think she’s just sweet and beautiful. Even though, she is part of The Trinity, the most powerful cartel in New York, they still tend to underestimate her.

There’s a misconception that when someone is quiet they’re content or complacent. Nothing can be furthest from the truth. The quiet ones sometimes hide the most pain, live in great turmoil, and hide the biggest heartbreaks. That’s why they also have the most strength, because they’ve always had to be strong.

Gia is one of those quiet ones. She’s everyone’s ray of sunshine, a dreamer without hope, living a life that chose her, and running from a past that’s never far behind. Beautiful smiles are there to cover bone deep scars.

Her role in The Trinity, which she runs with her two best friends, is as powerful as that of the other two members.  Each member of the Trinity has an equally important role in the organization. That is why the series symbol is The Trinity Knot. No matter which way you flip it, it doesn’t change its shape or strength. It’s equally powerful from all angles and their main asset is their unity.

It's one of Gia’s points of empowerment and the friendship is her sanctuary.

While their strength is wonderful to see, it can all be daunting for the men who are trying to
love them. Noah, the hero in Made, has his work cut out for him. Gia only trusts two people, the ones that have never let her down. Noah isn’t want of them. Their story is a long battle of love vs. Trust.

Will they learn to trust each other before it’s too late?






About the Author
J. L. Lora is a Dominican-American author. Her stories explore the dark side of good characters, people living in the gray areas of life while playing the cards life has dealt them. She loves strong heroines and their equally powerful Men. She currently lives in Maryland, pursuing her dream of writing compelling, sexy, can’t-put-down stories about empowered, badass alpha heroines and takeyour-breath-away alpha heroes.


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GIVEAWAY:  
I’m giving away an ebook copy of Made and a $5 Amazon card. To participate, please answer the following questions in the comments: Who is your favorite quiet one heroine or hero and why?

JRS will choose the winner of the contest.

Giveaway ends 11:59pm EST November 23rd. Please supply your email in the post. You may use spaces or full text for security. (ex. jsmith at gmail dot com) If you do not wish to supply your email, or have trouble posting, please email maureen@justromanticsuspense.com with a subject title of JRS GIVEAWAY to be entered in the current giveaway. 

Monday, November 20, 2017

WOULD YOU LET A STRANGER PROTECT YOU?


Congratulations to "Peggy", the winner in Maria's giveaway. Thank you to all who participated!

USA TODAY bestselling author Angi Morgan kicks off her new series with a spellbinding tale of crime and passion—Texas Ranger style!

Jack MacKinnon, Jr. didn’t expect to retrieve a fugitive in the middle of his vacation. Thinking he was doing a favor for his Company, he gave his word that he’d escort Megan Harper to Austin where another ranger could escort her to Dallas. Then his best friend claims she’s being framed and will be killed if placed in jail. He wants Jack to hide her on his ranch.
Jack can’t afford trouble during homecoming week while he fills in for his dad, a newly-elected state senator. With no desire to fill his father’s shoes as mayor, he’s anxious to get back to Company B. Keeping his dad appeased and a determined, capable woman secluded from the person trying to kill her might just be the hardest thing this ranger has ever done.
Accused of murder, Megan wants to find out who’s framing her. That’s what she does as an investigative analyst. Should she ignore the ranger who’s putting his life and career on the line? Or play it safe and hide with his family? Her question is soon answered when trouble arrives in the form of a hit man. Jack has to find a way to keep Megan alive before her self-sufficient attitude gets them both killed.

Can they ignore the desire ratcheting up the stakes, tempting them to take one last risk before a killer erases their future?


“I wouldn’t do that.” The deep voice slowed her steps.

A couple of steps away from her, a man lifted his finger in the air. He wasn’t the same as the man who’d accosted her at the gate. His serious scrutiny caught her off guard as he guided her out of the way of the revolving door.

“Are you following me?” She looked through the glass—the man trying to accost her and the carryon were gone.

“Nope. Someone wants to chat with you.” Serious guy extended a phone, and she heard an unfamiliar voice of a friend she hadn't seen in years.

“Megan. Megan, are you there?” The moment caught her off guard, and she paused. The stranger gently took her elbow, guiding her out of foot traffic, nodding as a couple of people passed and then handing her the phone.

She flipped the cell over and was on a video call. “Therese? I haven’t heard from you since I moved to Austin. What in the world is going on?”

“Thank God he found you. Listen, the man with you is Jack MacKinnon. He’s a friend and you need to leave with him. Now. I’ll explain later. Trust that your life is in danger.”

Megan looked straight into aviator shades and an expressionless pair of lips over a dimpled chin. His gesture to wrap up the call infuriated her a little bit more. But when she stumbled it was nice to have him there to steady her.

“I can explain everything in three or four days. Until then, MacKinnon can keep you safe.” Therese’s voice was shaky with fear. The man looked around without offering any explanation.

“I can take care of myself. But why do you think I need to? And why don’t I just go to the police?” She was certain she was capable.

Therese’s fear seemed to be seeping through the speaker, affecting her ability to reason. Either that or… Great, the room was spinning. “Why does it feel like I’m on that baggage carousel?”

“Wrap it up. They must have slipped you something.” The man gripped her elbow tighter and headed toward the exit.

“Someone’s trying to kill you, Megan. We don’t know who. At least not yet. And until we get a handle on this, you need to stay someplace safe. We think you’re being framed— What?” There was some noise on Therese’s end, and the screen went dark, like she’d covered the phone’s camera. Then nothing for a long couple of seconds. “I wish I had time to explain and I’m sorry I put you into this position. You can trust MacKinnon. He’s practically one of us. Maybe better since he’s a Texas—”

The phone went dark again. The connection was gone.

“Can you walk faster? I’m parked in a loading zone.” Therese’s friend wrapped his arm around her waist.

The mirrored aviator shades he wore blocked wherever he was looking, but it didn’t matter. She was quickly losing her footing and the grip on her laptop. “My bagsheze ish…”

Slurred speech and no muscle coordination. Her inability didn’t slow her escort down. He lifted her laptop bag onto one shoulder and stretched her arm around his other. She couldn’t even protest now. Her eyes were getting heavy, right along with every other part of her body.

“Stay with me, Megan,” he whispered close to her ear. “Yeah, we’re good. Pregnant. Just need to get her home.”

He’d told someone she was pregnant, and she couldn’t make her mouth object. Her brain seemed to be working, but nothing else. He lifted her onto the front seat of a giant truck and pulled the seat belt around her.

Eyes closed, her head fell to the window with a thud. They moved forward, and that was it. She’d been kidnapped, abducted. If anyone asked her to identify the man driving, she had a good image of a dimpled chin under shiny, reflective aviator shades.
~ ~ ~
RANGER PROTECTOR kicks off the TEXAS BROTHERS OF COMPANY B series. Available in stores mid-December and online January 1st. Available for Pre-Order
~ ~ ~
ANGI MORGAN writes Intrigues where honor and danger collide with love. Her work is a multiple contest finalist and Publisher’s Weekly best seller. She drags her dogs –and husband– around Texas for research road trips so she can write off her camera. They now have a map with highlighted roads they’ve traveled. Every detour somehow makes it into a book.
Website   Facebook   FB Fan Page   Twitter @AngiMorganAuthr     
Check out A Picture A Day, my newsletter or my monthly Giveaway

~ ~ ~
DON’T FORGET TO ENTER THE GIVEAWAY.
Leave a comment to be entered for a $5.00 gift card. Giveaway on JRS ends at midnight November 21st.  Contestants enter drawing by leaving a comment on Just Romantic Suspense.

Megan is in danger and her friend sends Jack to help.
Would you accept protection from a stranger?


Sunday, November 19, 2017

Good Girls Don’t Read that!


Giveaway of $5 gift card!

I am a proud Kindle user. Not only is reading your books electronically the best way to avoid clutter, it offers something else some of us may need…. PRIVACY. Let’s be honest who wants the world to know your reading Fifty Shades of Grey while your kids are around? I have always loved to read and when I became a writer it was obvious I would write the kind of stories that I read. I love the alpha bad boy that doesn’t always take the law into consideration. Let’s get even more personal… I love a down and dirty Mafia love story. I had my genre chosen and I was thrilled…. Until I told my friends.

When I was asked what my first book was about and I uttered the words Mafia Romance, I was given the “eye”.  We all know “the eye” don’t we? Those eyes are filled with suspicion. I am a nice, quiet girl who goes to church regularly and I wanted to write about Mafia Romance? I was basically told I was going to hell in my own taxi and I should write about the nice guy who goes to work, pray and attend bible study. There is nothing wrong with any of those things, but it’s not what I wanted and daydreamed about. I am a good girl that attends church often but I want something different. I NEED something different.

I want the alpha male that will throw me on the bed and tell me that I am his. I want the tattooed, bearded man that is willing to break a few fingers if someone pissed me off. I want the man with balls that knows how to use them. Good girls do read that and some of us want those things in our lives too!

Excerpt:

Before Pop got sick, I considered my family to be the perfect little Italian family that still had dinners on Sunday, but I suppose all families have something buried in the backyard. Unfortunately, with my family, it’s probably a body.

When Pop realized that he couldn’t defeat his cancer, he had a talk with each one of us. We all spoke to him privately and he told us his wishes. We never confided to the others what was said, but Ma, Alex, and Alexis seemed to have peace with what was said. I was the last one to enter the hospital room to hear his wishes and have the dreaded talk. I hated entering the room. It is so heartbreaking to see the man you looked at like he was Superman, find his kryptonite. Pop had lost so much weight; he looked like photos I had seen of his pop, which was at least fifty pounds lighter than my pop. His face was sunken in and he was so weak. I hated seeing what cancer had done to him. He was a fighter and he fought to the very end. As I walked closer to the hospital bed, I could feel myself getting weaker and weaker. I knew in my gut that this would be one of the last times I would talk to my father, my hero. He turned his head slightly to look at me and his weak voice said he had something important to ask me.

“I am dying Frank. I can no longer fight it, it’s too painful.” It hurt so much to hear my father admit to his pain. My father spent the next twenty minutes making his final request and I was shocked by what I was hearing. My father was a criminal. My entire family is criminals. Hell, I may be a criminal by blood. My father is the fucking don.

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About Author:
Rumer Raines is a good girl that will take her men the same way she takes her coffee…. HOT.  Reading about the Alpha male didn’t curve her appetite so she started creating her own. While most girls love the nice guy who does the 9 to 5.  You won’t be reading about those guys in any of her books… my men will always be just above legal, until they are caught.

Giveaway:
Comment on what qualities your dream man has and one lucky winner will win a $5 Amazon Gift Card

Giveaway ends 11:59pm EST November 19th. Please supply your email in the post. You may use spaces or full text for security. (ex. jsmith at gmail dot com) If you do not wish to supply your email, or have trouble posting, please email maureen@justromanticsuspense.com with a subject title of JRS GIVEAWAY to be entered in the current giveaway. 

Friday, November 17, 2017

The Forgotten Past and the Unknown Future


Giveaway Alert!

With every year that passes, I find myself grasping more and more for the most random details. If I’ve made a grocery list and I forget it at home, do you think I’m going to remember everything that’s on that list while I’m at the store? Heck, no! If I have a to-do list of fifteen items, I have to write everything down or I’m bound to forget at least six of them. And don’t even consider asking me “what happened in the previous episode?” if we’re watching a TV show together. That’s what the recap is for! I don’t have the mental space for that!
But honestly, it’s not so bad. I still have the lyrics to every single late 90’s pop song in my head, as well as the entirety of Robert Frost’s poem “The Road Less Traveled,” which I was forced to memorize in fifth grade.

All of these details are minor and easily navigated—nothing like, for example, waking up to find yourself lying on the side of the road with a gun near your hand and zero memory of how you got there. Or who you are. Or who that strange man is who’s running toward you wearing a shirt with bright yellow lettering that says ‘FBI’…

In my latest release, SILENT NIGHT THREAT, I wanted to explore the unknown in a different way—after all, when it comes to suspense, the external threat is often the most prevalent element of the unknown, but I decided to add another layer and force my main characters to confront an internal unknown at the same time. What would it be like to be dodging bullets, running for your life, and trying to protect a child you barely remember while you’re practically a stranger to yourself?

And what would it be like for the person who loves that individual, trying to protect her while she has no idea who he even is or how their lives are intertwined?

It’s one thing to live in suspense and fear when enemies are coming after you from all sides. It’s quite another when the attack comes from those enemies and from inside your own mind!

Listen, I’ll gladly take my forgotten grocery items or the hazy plot details of last week’s episode of Wynonna Earp any time over amnesia and weaponized aerial drones. The future is unknown enough without losing all my memories… but just in case that ever happens, I’ll keep taking obnoxious photos of my food for social media and posting inane tweets about what my cat is doing.

Hey, I’m just looking out for my future self!

Oh… hang on, what was my password again? ;)

GIVEAWAY:
What strange thing can you never seem to remember? A phone number? Your socks? Your brother’s dog’s birthday? Tell me about it in the comments!

Commenters will be entered into a giveaway to win one copy of SILENT NIGHT THREAT!


SILENT NIGHT THREAT 

None of her training prepares astronaut Natasha Stark for what she wakes up to three weeks after her groundbreaking space voyage: a target on her back—and no memories. But there's something oddly familiar about the FBI agent who rescues her. Christopher Barton can't believe he drew the mission of safeguarding his long-ago fiancĂ©e and her daughter—a child he has every reason to believe is his. To learn the truth, though, he has to help Natasha regain her memory. But with threats mounting against the family he hopes to join, Chris is running out of time to take down the assailants before they kill the woman he never forgot and the child he never knew existed.

About the Author
Michelle Karl is an unabashed bibliophile and romantic suspense author. She lives in Canada with her husband, a co-dependent cat, an unflappable bunny and an opinionated parrot. When she's not reading and consuming copious amounts of coffee, she writes the stories she'd like to find in her 'to be read' pile. She also loves animals, world music, and eating the last piece of cheesecake.


Giveaway ends 11:59pm EST November 18th. Please supply your email in the post. You may use spaces or full text for security. (ex. jsmith at gmail dot com) If you do not wish to supply your email, or have trouble posting, please email maureen@justromanticsuspense.com with a subject title of JRS GIVEAWAY to be entered in the current giveaway. 


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