The Pit and the Passion

She held her gaze steady, mainly so she could delve deep, deep into those chocolate eyes. Together with his sharp, angular nose and intense, almost predatory, expression, he reminded her of a peregrine falcon on the hunt.

Friday, November 17, 2017

I'm at Mixon Fruit Farms Harvest Festival Saturday 1-3!!!

Everyone clear your calendars and come to the Mixon Farms Harvest Festival Saturday Nov. 18 from 9-5! 

 Address is 2525 27th St. E Bradenton. 



Why, you ask? Because the Florida Writers Association has a booth--Table 34. Wonderful writers--nonfiction, children's, murder mysteries & romantic suspense all showcased (and on sale) there. I'll have all my books on sale there with deep discounts! I'll be there in person 1-3 pm.

Me & other great authors presenting
Oh, almost forgot! Drawings for fabulous gift bags--enter to win 2 of my suspense/cozy mystery novels.

More information: http://shop.mixon.com/

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Whirlwind Romance--Caribbean Romance Times Two

Bali Hai may not be the only special island in the world. Paraiso, home to Armand, hero of Whirlwind Romance, is a unique place, a Caribbean island settled by…Puritans! Come find out more about it and meet Maitea and Crispin, two lovely young people.




Pirates, Puritans, propaganda, and princes—pieces of the puzzle in the whirlwind romance between a beautiful jelly maker and a mysterious castaway.

Paraiso, the island in Whirlwind Romance, is based on a real island in the western Caribbean that I discovered—how else?—mucking around on the internet. Called Providencia, it forms an archipelago with two other islands, San Andres and Santa Catalina, and five uninhabited atolls. Currently under the Colombian flag, it has been the ruled by an incredible variety of groups, from Henry Morgan the notorious buccaneer, to Spanish Conquistadors, Dutch traders, even English Puritans. Now part of the UN's Seaflower Biosphere, it sports the third largest coral reef in the world. To reach it isn't easy, which is why it's not well known in tourist circles.

Its rich and odd history made it an intriguing backdrop for my story, but please be aware that most of the cultural and geographic description of Paraiso in Whirlwind Romance, not to mention the characters, is purely fictional.

Wild Rose Press, 8/17/2016, Champagne Rose imprint
Contemporary romance/Action Adventure; M/F; 2 flames
Ebook 89,905 words; Print: 358 p. 

In the aftermath of a hurricane, Lacey Delahaye finds herself marooned on an island on the Gulf coast of Florida with a mysterious man. They are immediately drawn to each other, but before Armand can confess his identity, they are kidnapped and taken to a tiny island in the western Caribbean. With the help of her son Crispin and a cadre of loyal followers, she and Armand must face down pirates, power-mad ideologues, and palace intrigue, if they are to restore the once idyllic tropical island to its former glory.
Lacey's House


In this excerpt, Armand’s second cousin, who by tradition must marry the second son of the Grand Duke, appears on Lacey’s doorstep seeking help.

Excerpt (G): We Meet Maitea

“Ms. Delahaye—”
“Please, call me Lacey.” We should be on a first-name basis if you’re going to marry the man I love.
“All right. I very much need your help. Crispin was sure you would know what to do.”
“Yes?” Out with it, child. The suspense rippled up and down her spine. She took a swallow of bourbon to calm her nerves. Is it about Armand? Is he hurt? In prison? In love with someone else? Lost in her frantic speculation, she almost missed Maitea’s next words.
“Prince Armand insists on marrying me, and I have no idea how to prevent him.”
“Prevent him?” A seedling of hope twined its way through the confusion. “I don’t understand. Why would you want to stop him? Doesn’t Paraisan custom demand it?”
“Yes.” Maitea took a delicate sip of wine and put the glass down. “But our generation considers it more of a guideline. We’re not Puritans after all.” She seemed to think this required clarification. “Well, not anymore. Nowadays, it’s accepted that both parties must agree to the match. And I don’t want to marry Armand. I want to marry Gorka.”
“Gorka?”
Maitea’s furrowed brow relaxed. “Gorka Jaso. He owns fifty acres down near Ekaitz on the west coast. It’s been in his family for three generations. He’s very rich.”
Despite the mercenary tinge to Maitea’s description, the seedling blossomed from hope into likelihood, choking out every other emotion. She doesn’t want to marry him! Lacey took another swig of bourbon and waited for her heart to defibrillate. Unfortunately, the pause left room for an alarming idea to insinuate itself. “You want to marry Gorka, but Armand still wants to marry you?”
“Yes, but I don’t believe he really wants to force me into a loveless marriage. It would make me so unhappy.” She folded her hands in her lap, her expression of prim complacency a tribute to her youth and self-absorption.
Lacey—herself wallowing in a sinkhole of self-doubt—found it refreshing.


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Coming 2018:
The Pit and the Passion: Murder at the Ghost Hotel


Sunday, November 5, 2017

Romance on Bean Point--Beach Love from Mai Tais and Mayhem



So many romances, so many crooks: can Tessa Diamond, turtle protector and amateur sleuth, keep them straight and still find true love?

I live on the Gulf Coast on a barrier island, the setting for Mai Tais & Mayhem: Murder at Mote Marine. In fact, the model for Tessa’s house, as well as the one for Dugan’s house, sits quite near me on the beach.

Many people don’t realize Florida has barrier islands—keys—on both sides of the state. Longboat Key, where Tessa lives, is a barrier island that protects Sarasota on the Gulf Coast. Eleven miles long, it is only half a mile wide at its narrowest point.  The next key up is Anna Maria, the very tip of which is called Bean Point. It is here that Cameron and Tessa become further acquainted.

I Heart Publishing, 12/7/2015
Contemporary romantic suspense/Mystery, M/F, 2 flames
eBook 68,840 words; print 208 pp.

Blurb:
When Tessa Diamond rescues a baby pufferfish from a hungry seagull, her good deed leads her into a shady world of smuggling, Russian gangsters, and coded messages. She confronts murder, attempted ravishment, parrots, sea turtles and big fish, only to encounter blossoming romances at every turn, including one of her own.

Before she can drop her longstanding opposition to marriage and accept her true love, however, she must face the possibility that he could be a thief, and even a murderer.

 
Near Bean Point
Excerpt (R): Bean Point

“So this is Bean Point. What a glorious view.”
Tessa snuggled under his arm. “It’s named after George Emerson Bean, the first settler on the island.”
“Ah, so it’s not named for the fields of golden beans that used to wave across the…er…um…what?”
She laughed. “Hoist by your own petard, or in this case metaphor?”
Cameron tapped her nose with a finger. “I guess I’m distracted.”
Tessa gazed at him as the stars blacked out one by one, leaving only the ones in her eyes. He bent his head to her and their lips met. The next few minutes passed slowly in a dream of unbuttoning and unzipping, then of warm skin touching skin, of limbs interlaced, and finally, of complementary parts dovetailing in ardent abandon.
“There, that wasn’t so bad, was it?” Cameron brushed some sand off Tessa’s breast. The warmth of his fingers remained on her flesh, and she cupped the spot, not wanting to lose the sensation. He gently moved her palm aside and bent to kiss her nipple. It hardened and rose to meet him. His hand trailed down her belly, caressing her hips and edging toward her vulva. Tessa couldn’t move. Her whole body lay rigid, waiting, hoping he would make love to her again. Even the gritty sand beneath her buttocks couldn’t distract her from her hunger for more.
“You want some more?”
She could only nod. The half-moon rode overhead, fighting with the stars for dominance. Cameron flipped her over on her stomach. She felt his breath on her ankles but couldn’t see what he was doing. Something tickled the back of her knees. Soft lips nipped the sensitive spot there, then proceeded up her thighs and across her ass. He stopped at the small of her back and sucked a bit of the skin into his mouth, sending a hot wave of desire surging over her body. Tessa began to writhe, but stopped when broken shells ground into her knees. Her vagina ached for a satisfyingly thick, stiff prick to fill the vacuum. Juices leaked out in anticipation, puddling in the sand. Suddenly Cameron’s hand slipped underneath her belly. He inserted two fingers and wham! Her orgasm pulled her up on her knees and she bucked, grunting and moaning. “Oh God, Cameron.”
“Yes, baby? Does that feel good?”
“Oh, yeeesssss.”
“Wait till you feel this.” He spread her thighs, smashing her breasts into the ground. She felt his penis beating against her, moving up to close with her.
“Hello? Who’s there?”
The two lovers split apart, panting. In the dim light Tessa couldn’t see Cameron’s face, nor that of the uninvited audience, but the voice was embarrassingly familiar. Josiah. She grabbed her shift and dragged it over her head. Cameron had dressed as well by the time a chubby figure hove into view, swinging a flashlight to and fro. When the beam hit Tessa’s face she was sitting calmly next to Cameron. “Josiah? Is that you?”
“Tessa? I thought you said you couldn’t work tonight?”
Tessa decided on an aggressive approach. “I did. That doesn’t mean I can’t go to the beach if I want to. What are you doing here? You’re supposed to be down at Casa Del Mar tonight.”
“I got a report of a new nest around here and…” His light swung to Cameron. “Who are you?”
“Who are you?” Evidently Cameron had opted for offense over defense as well.
The question seemed to throw Josiah, not an easy thing to do. Finally he gabbled, “You first.”
Cameron replied cheerily, “Me? Mason. Cameron Mason. A friend of Tessa’s. Do you two know each other?”
Tessa touched Cameron’s arm. “Josiah is the president of our turtle watch group. He’s very…dedicated.”
Josiah drew himself up to his full five feet three. “We have to be, you know. Otherwise the sea turtles will go extinct and…”
“All of them?” Cameron didn’t keep the amusement out of his voice. “I thought only the Kemp’s ridleys are of concern?”
“Well, yes, the ridleys are endangered…but all of them are threatened. The only bulwark our fellow creatures have between them and oblivion are those few humans who aren’t afraid to stand up to the Man.”
“Huh?”
Tessa stood up. “I think we should leave this discussion for another time. Did you find the nest, Josiah?”
He shook his head. “I fear Angus sent me on a wild goose chase.”
“What makes you say that?”
“He claimed he’d gotten an anonymous call from someone who had seen a skiff pull up and lights flashing. The caller thought it might be turtle egg pirates.”
“I beg your pardon? Did you say egg pirates?”
Tessa grabbed Cameron’s arm and dragged him up, hoping he could make out the warning on her face in the dark. “My, my. Well, we’d best be going. Good luck, Josiah. I’ll see you tomorrow.”
She attempted to sweep off, but when both feet landed on a nest of sandburs, she could only manage an ungainly hobble. She picked them off, wincing, and prepared to sweep again.
“Wait!”
She turned, desperation keeping a tight hold on her throat. “What is it?” she gurgled.
Josiah turned the flashlight on a wisp of lace panty, the scarlet ribbon fluttering in the gulf breeze. “Are these yours?”
Tessa snatched them and sprinted down the beach, trailed by Cameron’s snickers.

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