Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Thursday Thirteen - 16 - 13 Excerpts from 3 Fabulous Ellora's Cave Books

For today's TT I'd like to share excerpts from three excellent
Ellora's Cave books I'm delighted to own. The first two were released
in March of this year, and the third one just came out last week. All
are available for purchase at Ellora's Cave.

I'll start with LOVE ME WILD by Renee Field. She's a member of Romance
Writers of Atlantic Canada, which is how I met her. I've been a member
for several years now and so enjoy my friendships with everyone there.
I was lucky enough to win a copy of her book, a shape-shifter story.
"Can two beings with different beliefs embrace the fact that myths can
become real when sizzling magic, searing heat and passion engulf
them?" Here's a few excerpts to entice you:

LOVE ME WILD - Renee Field

1 - "Rowena shivered as she placed the test tube into the cycle-tron,
hoping the results would be wrong. Deep down, she knew they wouldn't
be. Ten minutes later, the cycle was complete. The tube was bright
blue. The results were positive, she had the Maida curse - she was
fertile. Rowena cringed, knowing what was to come.

Even though she was Maida's top biologist, she couldn't halt years of
evolution. For the first time in her life, she wished to be like her
sister, Tyrana - sterile. Then my life would be my own. How she envied
her sister's freedom of choice."

2 - " 'What matters to you most?' she asked.

Stupid woman. What mattered to all of his kind - freedom.

His eyes narrowed in disgust. When he didn't immediately answer, she
had the audacity to quirk her neat little eyebrows at him, as if he
were brain-dead.

'What matters to you most, 7653?' she repeated, her voice brushing
like a warm summer's breeze deep into the recesses of his mind.

The use of that number as if it were a name made him want to snort in
frustration. 'Freedom,' he snapped, looking her straight in the eye,
willing her to understand.

A smile lit up his face when she retreated back a step. His senses
also told him her heart had accelerated. She, too, isn't immune to my
voice. For once, that gave him a smug sense of male satisfaction.

'Him,' she said, turning her face to a woman standing at her side.

Tulon knew she had to be of importance. She looked regal.

'Choose another,' the woman replied, trying to usher the fourth male forward."

3 - "Tulon knew he had to get them off Mount Atrophe and fast.
Worse, the only safe and quick way was to flash into a stallion.

Turning to look at Rowena, he stilled his heart. 'What you're about to
see is probably going to scare you, but it's the only thing I can
think of that will get us out of here. For once, do as I say,' he

Not waiting for her response, he walked a safe distance away from her.
Then, without thinking any more about his actions, he let the magic
fuel his cells and willed his body to flash into his true form - a

He held his breath, hoping that for once the magic had listened to
him. A toss of his mane told him it wasn't so. He was a blasted
stallion. He still couldn't control the strange pulse of magic that
hummed through his system. Hating what had become of him, he pranced
on all fours, all but stomping the lush meadow as anger surged through
the marrow of his bones.

'I thought sex was supposed to stop the hallucinations,' giggled
Rowena, still sitting on the grass."

4 - "She almost bolted up from the grass, so he used his magic to lock
her arms in place over her head.

'Tulon, what are you doing?'

'Pleasuring you well, my spitfire.' He grinned, sitting back on his
heels to look at her.

She was still arching her neck off the grass to warily watch him. What
he wanted to see in those sky-blue eyes of hers was blazing passion.

'Using your magic to hold me down isn't fair play. Ohh,' she said, breathlessly.

'So, you are a believer in magic now.' ...The secrets the magic was
revealing to him astonished him. Things were starting to make more
sense to him from the night he had undergone his thrush. However, he
forced himself to focus on the task at hand. ..Once again he used his
power to position her just the way he wanted."

Next up is an anthology called SEASONS OF SEDUCTION Volume I /
Ellora's Cavemen. I won this one too! I have a rather wonderful
history of winning books. While visiting Lillian Feisty's The Feisty
Blog, I realised an 8 Things About Meme was in fact a list of movie
lines. Lillian turned that meme into a contest. Whoever could name all
8 flicks won a copy of the anthology that showcases one of her
stories, DANCE OF THE PLAIN JANE. With my husband being the walking
movie encyclopedia, perhaps it wasn't a fair playing field. No matter!
I was thrilled to get my copy in the mail.

"Having Michael run out on her after she's revealed her deepest,
darkest desire reminds Jane that trust is a difficult issue." There
are six sizzling stories in this collection, but I'll tantalize you
with with Lillian's because she's the reason I invited the Cavemen


5 - "You gotta see this chick, man. She is so fucking hot!'

Michael grunted and took a bite of his Tandoori Chicken. He hardly
tasted it. Indian wasn't his favorite type of food, but when his Navy
pals dragged him to the Bombay Cafe after a ten-mile swim in a very
choppy San Diego Bay, he had been too tired to argue. Now he simply
needed to put something in his grumbling gut and he didn't much care
what it was.

'You ain't kidding. If her hips don't lie then I want the truth, the
whole truth and nothing but the fucking truth!'

His friends weren't here for the food, either, it seemed. They kept
talking about some belly dancer who'd given them all hard-ons for the
entire weekend following the previous Friday night's performance.

'Why do they have a belly dancer in an Indian restaurant, anyway?' "

6 - "She had seen him so many times and not once had he noticed her.
He lived in her neighborhood. She didn't know exactly where, but
somewhere close. She occasionally saw him running, his long, strong
legs sure and steady as they carried him away from her. He never
caught her watching him...

They'd had coffee together several times. Well, not actually together,
but in the same local coffee shop, at the same time. She'd spent many
hours formulating exactly what to say to him the next time she saw him
there. Then he'd disappear for weeks on end and she'd lose her nerve.

But now she was in her element, and she wasn't going to chicken out tonight."

7 - " 'Oh, sweetie, what happened?'

Jane's eyes began to burn.

'Another obnoxious jerk at the restaurant?'

She sniffed. 'Yes.'

Abby put an arm around her shoulder. 'Come upstairs, tell me what
happened and I'll fix you a drink. Have you eaten?'

Jane smiled. For all Abby's bombshell looks she was really an Italian
mama at heart, and twenty minutes later Jane was seated at Abby's pink
kitchen table, drinking Cosmopolitans and eating leftover lasagna.

'Can you please tell me what's wrong with me?' Jane whined after she
had relayed the story to Abby. Well, most of it, anyway.

She refilled Jane's glass. 'Nothing is wrong with you.'

'We were just about to have sex and then he takes a phone call!'

'That is slightly strange.'

'Oh my God!' Jane slammed her glass onto the table. 'I know!'

'You know what?'

'I know why he took off.'

'You do?'

'It was my ass!' "

8 - " 'I always thought you were cute.'

'What do you mean, always?'

'At the coffee shop. I always tried to get a look at your face, but
you were constantly bent over some book, with you hair in your eyes.'

'You knew that was me?'

'I figured it out after I left the other night.'

The reminder of what happened snapped Jane back to reality. She tried
to push away, but his grip was tight on her hips. 'Let me go.'

'Not yet.' He raised her dress, the air cool against her naked thighs.
'From the moment I saw you dancing in that restaurant I haven't been
the same. Can't stop thinking about you.'

'Stop. Someone might see.' She looked around the alleyway but there
was no sign of life.

'Don't care,' he said."

Christine d'Abo is another friend I've met through Romance Writers of Atlantic Canada. We had a great time at the writers' retreat this past May (Renee, too) and she's a very good blogging buddy. Her book is a futuristic: "When the colony comes under attack by a brutal alien force, can Haylie and Kamran keep their bond a secret and stop the invasion in time to save everyone?"

THE BOND THAT TIES US - Christine d'Abo

9 - "Thank god, she was finally here. With a shiver of anticipation, Haylie Bond stepped off the shuttlecraft into the bright hangar bay of the Eurus colony. Casting a glance around she was pleased to see the large windows on the far side of where the shuttle had set down. They'd landed on the planet midafternoon but the winds were so strong the bright red sand of the planet was whipping around the colony like traveling tornadoes. Still, the alien sight reassured her she really had made it. If someone had told her a year ago she'd be taking up residency on Earth's newest colony, twenty light years from home, she would have laughed.

She hadn't been this excited about anything since, well, ever. Haylie took a deep breath, held it for a moment and released it. Calm. Stay focused on the situation, take in what you need and get down to the business of being the best damn security chief this colony ever had."

10 - "The winds had picked up again, pelting sand and small rocks against the glass in a mad frenzy. Kamran felt a kinship with the planet tonight.

'Do you think it's a trick? A chemical or toxin perhaps, used to confuse your body into thinking it has found a mate?'

'I thought of that. I had the computer scan me for any foreign substances. Nothing. Had you seen her you wouldn't question her reaction either. It was genuine. Besides, what would she gain by doing so?'

'The Ecada have lots to gain.'

He'd thought of that too. 'I cannot imagine a human conspiring with them. The Ecada see the humans as little more than a food source. It would be suicide.'

'There has to be another explanation.'

He straightened. His chest tightened and he had to fight the urge to hit Taber. Who the hell was he to question whether or not Kamran had actually found his mate?

'Why?' The word sounded clipped to Kamran, but he didn't care.


'Why does there have to be another explanation?' Kamran placed his glass on the table, afraid it would shatter in his hand.

'It's simply not possible.' "

11 - "She lifted her hand to trigger the computer sensor when his door suddenly whooshed open. Kamran stood there, his tunic half buttoned, looking concerned.

'Are you well?' His voice sounded as grave as hers had a short time earlier. His eyes were wide, checking her over, looking for some invisible mark.

'Yes. Are you?'

His hair looked as if he'd been running his hands through it repeatedly. His tunic, which looked vaguely like the one in her dream, did little to conceal his body. Her heart began to pound as bits of her dream came rushing back. Her mouth watered at the thought of seeing him naked. She felt her body sway closer to his, the invisible push-pull between them more powerful than ever.

Kamran didn't immediately respond, but instead checked the hallway and pulled her quickly inside. The room remained a mystery to Haylie, as his large frame blocked everything from sight.

'What are you doing here?' His fingers tightened around her biceps.

'Kamran, stop that. I'm here because you asked me to be.'

'I did no such thing. Having you here is the worst thing we could do right now. I have to get ready for a meeting first thing in the morning.'

'Well, Taber brought me here at your request. Something about not trusting the vid screens, but needing information.'

She looked down at where his fingers gripped her arm. His grip was firm, but not painful. It only took a single look from her and he released her.

'Sorry,' he muttered and ran his hand through his hair."

12 - "For once in his life, he wasn't alone. He had someone who was bound to him and he to her. If they were discovered, he would lose everything he'd worked a lifetime to achieve. A part of him, a very selfish but small part, didn't want to give up his ambassadorship. Not now. Not with things in such a critical state.

The larger part of him missed her. Terribly.

He shifted over to his side and closed his eyes. Haylie's face drifted to the surface of his mind. She smiled at him and wrapped her arms around his neck. She looked so happy, every trace of worry erased from her face. Arousal nipped at him. He leaned forward to kiss her and her face dissolved before him into nothing."

For the last excerpt, I'm going to leave you with a melange of spicy
moments from all three stories. Enjoy!

13 - LOVE ME WILD - "The feel of her warm skin on his was an
aphrodisiac. The air around them all but crackled as his magic raced
to the surface. Gritting his teeth, Tulon knew he had no choice. He
had to have her. He wouldn't be denied."

DANCE OF THE PLAIN JANE - "And he kissed her. Kissed her with a
surprising tenderness that melted her heart.

Her wrists strained against the silk as she kissed him back. The
bondage heightened her sensitivity and frustrated her at the same time
- she had no control over her pleasure."

THE BOND THAT TIES US - "In the next instant, Kamran felt her lips
upon his, shocked by the texture, the smoothness of her skin. His eyes
refused to work, but he didn't need them to know who this woman was.

'It's you.' "


Amy Ruttan said...

Great imaginative list. I have yet to read Renee's I have been so swamped, though I should I've read everyone elses on Six Degrees. DOH (she says slapping her head).

Unknown said...

Thanks Julia!! I hope you enjoyed the book. :)

Unknown said...

Thanks so much Julia! I'm glad you liked the book and congrats on winning my contest!

Julia Phillips Smith said...

Christine, I loved it! I'll get some proper reviews out to various and sundry places by next week! For you, Renee and the Cavemen anthology.

MsSnarkyPants said...

These sound great! Happy TT!

Tempest Knight said...

Love it! Happy T13!

Camille Alexa said...

You're totally promo-riffic.

Akelamalu said...

Great reviews.

Anonymous said...

This is such a great list. Truly a labour of love. Thanks for stopping by today - have a great weekend, XINE

Susan Helene Gottfried said...

NEAT idea, Julia!!