Hacker Lawry Release Blitz

HACKER LAWRY

THE LONELY HEROES SERIES – BOOK FOUR

Cover Artist – Arden O’Keefe (K.S.L. Designs)

BLURB

Lawrence ‘Lawry’ Schatz –

Heartbroken? Check.
Unemployed? Check.
Homeless? Check.
Self-medicating? As often as possible.

My life has been upended with a three-word text, and a meeting with my boss’s boss nearly finishes me off. I’m in a downward spiral, and I have no intentions of pulling out. My brother Hank has other ideas. He’s called in a big gun, Gabriele Torrente, who drags me to New York and pushes me to get myself together.

At a family event, I hook up with the hottest guy I’ve ever met, intending to just relieve some tension. The guy turns out to be more than I could imagine. He’s sassy, opinionated, and he completely sets me on my ear. I can tell Maxim Partee won’t put up with my crap. I made a huge mistake with him, but he still agrees to be my friend, and that is precisely what I desperately need. I live under no illusions he’ll ever need me in return.

##

Maxim ‘Maxi’ Partee –

Sexy? Check.
Successful? Check.
Lonely? Very much so.
Power bottom? You bet your… bottom.

I have a successful business—two of them as a matter of fact. I have friends I cherish, and I love my life. I keep telling myself it’s more than enough for me. I choose the men I spend time with, and it’s always on my terms.

An unexpected hook-up at a birthday party leads me down an unanticipated path where I meet a man who has been crushed by mountain of disastrous events, and he’s doing his damnedest to push everyone away so he can quietly self-destruct. Why in the hell can’t I just walk away?

This fictional story is approximately 86,000 words in length. It is the fourth book in “The Lonely Heroes Series.” TRIGGER WARNING: Discussions of suicide and description of an attempt.


TROPES

| Former CIA Cybercrimes Field Agent | Party and Event Planner | Enemies to Lovers |

| Hurt/Comfort | Foreign Intrigue | HEA |


EXCERPT

August 2019

“Agent Schatz, the Assistant Director wants to see you.” I was sitting in my three-by-three cube—well, it was bigger than that, but it was still like a shoe box, nonetheless.

I turned to see Paula Gore, the Executive Assistant to Assistant Director Mallory who was head of the Dallas Field Office, standing at the opening of my cubicle. I was a third level agent for the Central Intelligence Agency—or the Spooks,as the other agencies referred to us.

I was an expert in monitoring cybercriminal activity and breaking coded messages that were transmitted among criminal enterprises, and I enjoyed my job. I could tiptoe through anyone’s information without leaving a footprint, and it pissed off most of the agents with whom I worked because they weren’t always so successful, but I just laughed at them when they complained. I was doing something for the good of the country, but I wasn’t actually in the field doing it, which was never my thing, anyway.

My work was something I took seriously, and I was proud of the fact I’d reached a level of expertise that set me above my CIA colleagues and my peers in other agencies. I wasn’t gloating. I was just better at my job than the rest.

“What’s up?”

Paula Gore was the kind of woman who minded her own business, and I liked her. When Julien had gone to the Assistant Director and asked to transfer from the Directorate of Science & Technology—Cyber Surveillance to Clandestine Services—Anti-Terrorism, we both learned Paula had kept quiet about the fact she’d caught us making out in the hallway near the break room two months earlier. I’d be forever appreciative for her discretion.

“I’m not really sure, but he said he wants to speak with you immediately.” Paula turned and left the area without another word. I sighed as I looked around, seeing a bunch of people staring at me, which made me uneasy. I pulled on my sports jacket and locked my laptop, following the trail Paula had blazed back to Mallory’s office. Once I was on the express elevator to the AD’s office, I pondered what the fuck the man might want from me.

I’d been following up on communication intercepts for a number of suspected terrorist cells in the Southwestern United States with possible counterparts in Mexico and Central America. It was my job to confirm they were credible before passing on the information to field agents for follow-up investigations. The work was tedious and time-consuming, tracing out all of the connections, but it was what I did best. I couldn’t imagine the request to report to the AD had anything to do with my work product.

One possibility for being summoned could be that AD Mallory learned about my moonlighting job for Gabe Torrente, or Gabby as my brother Hank referred to his good friend. They were Army Rangers once-upon-a-time, and Gabby had gone on to start up a U.S. subsidiary of his uncle’s private security agency in Italy. When I had down time, I did research for Gabby. His IT guy, Johnny Chang, had left him after being shot during a protection assignment. The primary, Dexter Carrington, was being hunted by members of the Mangello crime family because he was hiding his niece and nephew to keep them safe. Turned out they were Frankie Mangello’s grandkids.

I’d followed up on several leads for Gabby and had confirmed one of the guys he’d asked Julien and me to check out for him, Royal Conway, hadn’t been affiliated with any agency or bureau under the U.S. umbrella. The other one had been a Drug Enforcement Agency operative, but it seemed there’d been an internal investigation into his activities, according to a red-flagged file on their server, which I’d known better than to open, regardless of how tempting it had been.

Had the DEA beefed up their security and detected me taking a stroll through their network? Was that what got me called up to the AD’s office? Would my Supervisory-Agent-in-Charge Wendell Robb be there waiting as well?

I couldn’t blame Gabby’s IT guy for wanting out of the security business—it was dangerous. With all of the crazy shit I’d been privy to in my time with the Company, everyone didn’t have the stomach for it. My older brother had been a sniper in the Army, and he’d seen his fair share of unholy hell that had left him with scars—a few external, but most of his damage was invisible to the naked eye.

Hank handled his inner demons with the help of Cosmo, his service dog, and Reed Bayless, his husband. My big brother had met and married a wonderful man, an educator of children with special needs, and Reed and Hank were recently granted foster guardianship of a ten-year-old boy they were hoping to adopt.

My new nephew was on the autism spectrum and had some difficulties I suspected would have caused most potential parents to shy away. I knew for a fact Hank and Reed would help Brock through the difficulties he’d encounter as he grew up in their home because failure was never an option for Hank and Reed. All in all, I wouldn’t say I was trying to live up to the tall shadow cast by Henry Schatz-Bayless, but maybe?

Paula nodded for me to knock and enter, so I did. Assistant Director Ian Mallory rose from his chair and stepped around his desk, extending his hand. “Agent Schatz, thank you for coming so quickly. I, uh, you are friends with Supervisory Field Agent Julien Renfro, correct?” he asked.

I shook his hand and took a seat, worried about the way the conversation was starting. Julien had been my boss when I was promoted from a junior grade analyst in Intelligence & Analysis to a Field Agent in Science & Technology. With his recommendation, I got promoted to a Senior Field Agent within eight months, and that was before we ever really got to know each other. Julie, as I called him, told me I had excellent skills and often teased me about a sealed juvenile record that must exist somewhere, because there was no way I didn’t hack into shit when I was a teenager.

Obviously, Julie didn’t know Maureen and Gene Schatz very well. They would have killed me if I’d pulled anything of the sort. I hadn’t learned to hack systems until I’d started my training with the CIA, unlike Johnny Chang. That kid was a natural at it, but he’d taken risks I’d been taught to avoid by the Company. I was a programmer at heart and went about entering my target in a different fashion than a natural-born hacker like Johnny. Neither of us were wrong in the way we went about gathering our intel, we just had different styles, and from what I was learning, we were both proficient at acquiring what we wanted without being caught.

Before I met Julien Renfro, I’d identified as mostly straight… okay, at least bisexual? There had been a few guys at Washington University who’d turned my head during undergrad and graduate school, and my interest and reaction to them had had me confused in the beginning. As I’d further considered things, there weren’t really many women who’d caught my eye since high school when I lost my virginity to Molly Ingram. I’d arrived at the conclusion maybe I’d slid up the Kinsey scale long before I’d been willing to acknowledge it?

“Yes, sir, Director Mallory, we’re friends.

Of course we were friends. We were more than goddamn friends if one counted all the nights I spent with my cock buried in Julie’s ass, but I was currently pissed at him. Julien Renfro had left Dallas without a goodbye, kiss my ass, or go fuck yourself. The bastard had even left me in the middle of the night, adding insult to injury. Three weeks later, I’d gotten a text from him, before he went dark.

GET OUT NOW!


Bonus Exclusive Excerpt:

“I remember you from the wedding. I’m Maxi Partee. You’re Lawry Schatz?”

The guy had me a bit speechless as I took in the sight of him. His hair was a dark blonde with flecks of gold woven through it, which set off his gorgeous features. He was wearing a white button-down shirt, jeans, and had a blue and white scarf draped loosely around his slender neck. The blue eyeliner rimmed around his eyes picked up the blue in the scarf and made his eyes pop even more. The guy looked like a rock star, although a petite one as I towered over him. I didn’t like the things happening in my mind—and body for that matter—as I took in his appearance.

“Resident alcoholic, according to everyone I know. I’m having a hard time accepting it, but I’ve yet to walk the twelve steps. I’m pretty sure denial is the starting point for this type of situation. Anyway, I’m not exactly certain how I wronged anyone when I went on my binge, so it’s taking a while to come up with my amends, but they say I have to do it.” I extended my hand to shake his, as was polite.

Maxim looked me square in the eyes without one ounce of hesitation. “Why’d you go off on a bender?”

I didn’t hesitate to respond, even though Dexter began protesting. I held up my hand and smiled at Dex before I turned to Maxi Partee. “I was in love with a man who took his own life rather than make a new one with me. I decided to undertake a mission of introspection to try to figure out why. It involved alcohol, marijuana, and a little peyote at a sweat lodge in Taos, New Mexico. I never came up with any answers, sadly.” I had resolved to be honest with people going forward.

The smaller man laughed. “Do you miss the alcohol?”

I chuckled in return. “I don’t miss the headaches, but I honestly never cared much for the taste of alcohol in the first place. At the time, it was a means to an end—numbing me from thinking about shit I didn’t want to remember. Now, I’m trying to adjust to a loss, and I need to be sober for it. What’s your deal?” I grabbed a bottle of water from the fridge.

The guy giggled. “I’m an event planner, and since you’ve been to an event planned by me, you know I’m superb at my job. If we have liquor at Gabe’s party, do we have to worry that you’ll start stalking the waiters who are passing champagne and end up on the tables doing a striptease? Though, on second thought, I sure wouldn’t mind seeing that.”

I chuckled. “Champagne isn’t exactly my drink of choice. Hell, I miss the peyote more than the liquor.” It was a joke, but it wasn’t far from the truth. I held up three fingers and stood to my full height in a Boy Scout pose. “I promise on my brother’s life that I won’t drink at Gabe’s party so you can have as much alcohol as you’d like. I’ll be a good boy,” I vowed, giving the party planner a wink.

The gorgeous man laughed again. “You’re hardly a boy, trust me.”

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GRAND GIVEAWAY

Enter the rafflecopter and stand a chance to win any ONE of the following prizes –

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  • Signed Paperback of Ranger Hank / Guardian Gabe / Cowboy Shep (US Only)
  • E-copy of The Lonely Heroes – Volume One Boxset (Books 1 – 3)

AUTHOR BIO

I grew up in the rural Midwest before moving to the East Coast with a dashing young man who swept me off my feet, and we’ve now settled in the desert of Nevada. I write M/M contemporary romance, subgenres: sweet low angst, age-gap, cowboys, mysteries, and military/mercenary to name a few. I am a firm believer in “Love is Love” regardless of how it presents itself, and I’m a staunch ally of the LGBTQIA+ community. I have a loving, supportive family, and I feel blessed by the universe and thankful every day for all I have been given. I’m old enough to know how to have fun, but too old to care what others think about my definition of a good time. In my heart and soul, I believe I hit the cosmic jackpot. Cheers!

Rock Me Teaser Excerpt

Today we have a teaser reveal for MJ Roberts Rock Me! Check it out and be sure to pre-order today!

Title: Rock Me

Author: MJ Roberts

Genre: Rockstar Romance

Release Date: August 3rd

About Rock Me:

Betrayed by his family after serving time for a crime he didn’t commit, Spider’s angry at the world. The only solace he finds is playing his guitar. He’s fine, he’s good, and if anyone dares suggest otherwise, he’ll pull his knife on you, just to prove a point.

Maria’s devoted to her family and her dream. But when she’s forced to hide from some bad guys intent on torturing her for information she doesn’t possess, she’s forced to run — straight into Spider’s arms.

They’re on the road with the tour that will make or break Spider’s career — and his heart.

 

Pre-Order Your Copy Today!

Catch Up on the Series:

Rock Hard: Chord Brothers, Book 1

Rock Harder: Chord Brothers, Book 2

Rock Hard: Chord Brothers, Book 3

Rock Solid: Chord Brothers, Book 4

Rock Hard: Chord Brothers – Audio

 

About MJ Roberts:

M.J. Roberts is a writer, editor, and teacher – with more than two million copies of her stories in circulation worldwide, Roberts is well loved for creating characters who feel as real as your most cherished friends. Roberts works to diligently to create believable, lovable characters, witty dialogue, prose ripe with metaphor, exciting plot twists, action that keeps you on the edge of your seat, and romance scenes that sizzle.

 

Roberts is a multiple award-winning author including first place in the prestigious Summer Lovin’ Romance Literary Contest 2015 for the novel Risk Your Heart.

 

Roberts also writes under the pen name Natasha Action. Roberts is originally from New York but lives in the southern United States for the purpose of endless comic material.

 

She’s married to a professional musician (A.K.A. The Rock and Roll God) because she is too busy tormenting imaginary characters and counting her blessing to pursue her longtime dream of Rock n’ Roll stardom herself.

 

Connect with MJ:

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

 

Wrath Book Blitz

Wrath
Marteeka Karland
(Black Reign MC, #2)
Publication date: July 23rd 2021
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Wrath: When El Diablo sends me to infiltrate the DA’s office and find out who’s involved in the corruption there, I’m all over it. Being a lawyer, I’m singularly suited to El Diablo’s purpose, and I know the system inside and out. I am also adept at blending in, even with my muscles and tatts. We’ve known since Justice from Salvation’s Bane took a prison sentence he didn’t deserve that someone from the DA’s office was in the back pocket of the wrong people. Those wrong people are in the form of a rival MC who rule their territory with an iron fist and are trying to encroach on Salvation’s Bane as well as Black Reign.

Then I meet a sexy little platinum-haired escort and all bets are off. I’m attracted to her like I’ve never been to another woman, and it’s messing with the Zen-like calm I’m famous for. If I can’t pull myself together enough to complete this job, I’ll fail my club and, more importantly, my mentor, the club president, El Diablo. That’s something even this unholy attraction can’t cause. But what’s a man to do when all that stands in the way of the happiness of a sexy single mom and her feisty but vulnerable daughter is club business, and a few Saint Bernard puppies?

Celeste: I’m in a financial jam of the worst kind. I need to make enough money to pay for my daughter Holly’s medical bills. The sheer volume of money I need is overwhelming. Working doesn’t touch it, and no one wants to hire me full-time because of the cost of insurance. The only way to finish Holly’s leukemia treatments is for me to keep up the payments to the hospital and clinic. If I can’t, then Holly’s chances of remission may only be a lost dream. Out of options, I accept an offer to be an escort. Not only that, but I soon find myself working for a motorcycle club as a “cam girl,” doing live sex shows. Glamorous? Not at all. But it’s more money than I can make working three jobs. Imagine my surprise when the man who paid for my services as an escort turns up in the control room of my first cam show. He’s sexy as sin, and much more than he appears to be. He’s also got me completely under his spell. Which sucks because he’s quite possibly the rudest jackass I’ve ever had the displeasure of meeting.

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

EXCERPT:

“Well, my friend,” Gray continued. “If you want to make money, I guarantee you, you’ve come to the right place. Lawson, Hughsman, and Gray can make you a lot of money.” He emphasized “a lot” and gave me a knowing look. “With money comes power. With power comes perks.” He gestured toward a long table with pretty much any kind of quality drug or liquor a man could want. There were Cuban cigars, Legacy rum, some kind of expensive absinthe, and, of course, heroin, cocaine, and various other mind-altering substances.

As if that whole line had been a setup, a door opened just beyond the well-stocked table and several very beautiful, very sophisticated women entered. “See what I mean?” Gray looked positively gleeful, actually rubbing his hands together as he eyed each woman like a kid in a candy store. “Yours to enjoy, Vincent. Take your pick. There’s nothing they won’t do. Live out your nastiest fantasies with as many of them as you like for as long as you like.” He clapped my shoulder. “These are just a very few of the perks you can enjoy as one of us.”

Normally, I’d have smiled politely and passed, but one woman caught my eye in a huge way. She was ethereal in her beauty. Long, platinum-blonde hair, flawlessly pale skin. She’d dressed in red, naturally. Some skimpy little number I couldn’t even register. All I saw was the woman. Short and slight, she had rounded hips but was very slender. Her legs were perfectly formed. Just the right amount of muscle to grip a man tight during sex. She looked out of place among the other women. It wasn’t something I could put my finger on, but she just didn’t fit.

Nervous. She looked nervous. Where the other women smiled and sought out a partner, this girl seemed unsure of herself. She smiled politely when she had to, but she didn’t have that shark-like quality the others did. If she was looking for the wealthiest man of the bunch — and when did an escort not do that? — she wasn’t doing a good job. In fact, she seemed to avoid eye contact whenever she could. Lord knew more than one of the men in the room tried to get her attention. She was easily the most beautiful woman in that room. Instead, she wandered around, looking at the artwork on the walls. She avoided the table with the alcohol and drugs.

My very first thought the second I could see her from head to toe was that if I fucked her the way I wanted, I might break her delicate frame. My next thought was, “I can be gentle.” It was a Goddamned lie, but I told myself that anyway.

“Ahh, I see one of them has caught your eye? Which one?”

I glanced at Gray, standing next to me. He leaned forward in anticipation. Did he have his eye on the little blonde, too? “Where do you get these girls?” I knew, of course, but I wanted to hear what he had to say.

He shrugged. “Most are from a high-end escort service out of Miami. One or two are local, I think. All of them were vetted and screened medically. All disease-free and with an IUD, verified by our physician.”

I gulped down the rest of the scotch in the lowball glass I held. Without saying anything else to Gray, I approached the young woman before anyone else had a chance.

“Come with me.” I wasn’t big on words and, really, if she was a paid escort there was no need for them.

Her eyes widened, and there was the slightest quiver to her bottom lip before she lowered her eyes and ducked her head slightly. Hmm… A little more demure than I’d like, but I could work with it. I took her hand, and I’ll be Goddamned if she didn’t tremble. My gaze snapped to hers.

“You OK?” I was a bastard, and I wanted this girl, but the farther away we got from the other women with their cloying perfumes and the more her unique clean, fresh scent wrapped itself around me, the more she wrapped herself around my insides. It was like discovering a new life form. I was eager, excited, and just plain in awe of her. She looked like a fuckin’ angel.

“Of course,” she said softly. “Where are we going?”

“To be alone,” I said gruffly, my grip on her hand tightening.

Author Bio:

Romance author by night, emergency room tech/clerk by day, Marteeka Karland works really hard to drive everyone in her life completely and totally nuts. She has been creating stories from her warped imagination since she was in the third grade. Her love of writing blossomed throughout her teenage years until it developed into the totally unorthodox and irreverent style her English teachers tried so hard to rid her of. Now, she breathes life into faeries, space hunters, werewolves, vampires, shapeshifters, and a few just plane ole ordinary people. She loves to see the awkward, self-conscious band geek get the captain of the football team and make him beg for it.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram


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The Shadow Queen Book Blitz

The Shadow Queen
K. Rea
(The Wolfrik Trilogy, #2)
Publication date: July 22nd 2021
Genres: New Adult, Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy

A SMOLDERING COURT.
A DIVIDED PEOPLE.
A WARNING FROM THE GODDESS.

With the Court of Shadows in ruins, Evelyn Wolfrik has one goal – to rebuild.
After an encounter with the God of the Forest himself and a summons from the Court of Light, Evelyn’s future seems anything but certain.

Leaving the forests, her pack, and fledgling Court behind, Evelyn travels to the white mountains of the Court of Light. Deep in the mountains, navigating not only a frigid court but also challenges and trials she never could have foreseen, she risks losing more than just her crown.

Goodreads / Amazon

EXCERPT:

Gryphons in the Night

I snuck up the mountainside as quickly and quietly as I could. The rocks beneath my feet slid, the goats noticed. The ones awake went on alert as I ran towards them, weaving through the coverage. They darted. The sleepy one, though, was slow. Its instincts kicked in, and it ran for open ground away from me. I herded it up the mountainside to the snow in its panic. It floundered in the snow as I stalked it. The goat recognized me as a predator; its bleats became screeches on the wind as I lunged.

With the goat’s neck in my jaws, the screeches I heard grew louder, to an unbearable volume. I snapped the goat’s neck as a roar erupted around me, and the screech kept going. They did not belong to the goat. I pulled my prey free from the snow and ran with it down the mountain to a boulder I had seen earlier.

A shadow crossed over me as a gryphon collided with Ares; both creatures were engulfed in Ares’s cloud of flame. Training in the woods, watching Aiden and Ares tussle, did nothing to prepare me for the violence I now witnessed. The goat carcass slowed me down, but we needed the food, and I knew I needed to get out of Ares’ way. I’d only be a distraction on the ground. A second shadow passed over me, more screeches echoed through the mountain. I reached the boulder and dropped the damned goat in the shadow of the large stone before peeking back around the rock.

There in the fading light, Ares fought in his dragon form, swooping and diving between two gryphons. Their lion bodies were dark, like their avian heads and wings, a silhouette against the darkening sky. Their beaks were sharp and screeching, yet Ares didn’t hesitate or run. He maneuvered around them as if it was all a choreographed dance; to him, maybe it was. The ribbon of light from the protective barrier grew brighter in the growing darkness.

A rake of Ares’ claws along the gryphon rendered its wings useless. As it fell from the sky, its cries rattled the mountains. It was disorienting enough that Ares did not focus back on the other gryphon until it was too late. As if time had stopped, I watched, frozen, as the gryphon launched itself at Ares’ back and ripped his wings to shreds in the same fashion Ares had done to his companion. Ares’s roar of anguish struck a chord deep in my soul. Still in my wolf form, I scrambled to the top of the boulder, and I launched myself into the air.

Author Bio:

K. Rea is a part-time romance writer and full-time mom. When she isn’t writing or playing with her daughter, she’s reading and crafting. She lives with her husband and family in Florida.

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Jet Release Blitz

Title: Jet
Series: The Sinful Seven #2
Author: Connie Lafortune
Genre: Contemporary Rockstar Romance

Release Date: July 22, 2021

BLURB

As the crowd cheers and the music blasts,

I’m content to let my bandmates take center stage.
They can steal the spotlight while I get lost in the thumping beats.
There, in the shadows of our building fame,
my secrets remain safely hidden, or so I thought.
Quinn wants to uncover all of my pain.
See every scar.
Yet the ugly truth carved on my heart could be enough to drive her away.
I didn’t want the world to know.
But now my past has come back to haunt me.
Will I lose the girl and my dream too, when everything I desperately tried to hide comes crashing down around me?

Dive into the gritty world of rock-and-roll with Jet, the second installment of The Sinful Seven series, where the past and present collide!

PURCHASE LINKS
AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU
Free in Kindle Unlimited

PLAYLIST
EXCERPT

The crowd is wild, and my heart’s beating to the rhythm of the mob. Security is crazy as we exit the limo, the scene tight and cramped. Not even a piece of paper would fit between us. With our heads down and the fans screaming, we do the best we can to rush the short distance between the car and the entrance. The screaming is relentless, but when someone shouts, “Jethro,” it stops me mid-stride. Impossible. There’s no way I could have picked out a random name from this screaming frenzy. I continue my way forward, and just when I’m about to walk through the double doors, I hear it again. “Jethro!”

One glance from Lucas and I think maybe, just maybe he heard it too. We don’t have time to investigate so we keep on walking. I’ve no doubt I’m as white as a ghost. That’s to be expected when you hear a voice that’s been haunting you for over thirteen years. . .

ALSO AVAILABLE

AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU
Free in Kindle Unlimited

AUTHOR BIO

Connie Lafortune is a rebel, coffee addict and incurable romantic. She pens steamy contemporary romance about enemies-to-lovers, second chances, and broken heroes with plenty of angst. If she’s not in her office writing her next novel, you can bet she’s curled up in a comfy chair with her nose buried in a book. On the lookout for her next book boyfriend!
AUTHOR LINKS

Footsteps of the Past Release Blitz

Title: Footsteps of the Past
Series: Second Chances #2
Author: Felice Stevens
Genre: M/M Romance
Release Date: July 21, 2021
Cover Design: Reese Dante
It was like in the movies: their eyes met from across the room and they fell in love.

Nine years later, Chess and André are the envy of all their friends.
But this is real life….and things are never what they seem.
Still waters run deep—the better to hide Chess’s ugly past. He’s worked hard to bury the troubled teen he once was and is living a life he never imagined possible. André’s love is a gift that makes him believe in second chances, and Chess is grateful for it every day. The only thing he wants is what André finds impossible to give: his time. Six months apart might be the breaking point, even for Chess.
One horrible night changed André’s life forever. Formerly a party boy of the Hamptons social scene, André buries himself in work for years until he meets Chess and learns to enjoy the simple things. He’s tired of being away from home all the time and ready to step down from his role as CEO of the family business, no matter how they try and pull him back in. But old habits die hard…and so do memories.
Photos from the past and present surface, shocking Chess and André out of their carefully constructed dream life. They are forced to face the unthinkable: the love they thought would last a lifetime may be on the brink of falling apart. Secrets are exposed, opening a Pandora’s box both men hoped would stay locked forever. Now Chess and André face the hardest question: do you ever really know the person you’re living with?

“Felice has done it again…a masterful combination of raw emotions and love.” ~Audrey, Goodreads reviewer

“…their story is ultimately a beautiful testament to unconditional love. This one has my highest recommendation.”~ Randall, Goodreads reviewer

“This book does have angst, but oh was it worth it. Love that this story is about a couple who has been with each other for years…I absolutely adored this story – Chess and Andre have each other’s hearts and mine too!” ~ Nicole, Goodreads reviewer



Felice Stevens has always been a romantic at heart. She believes that while life is tough, there is always a happy ending just around the corner. Her characters have to work for it, however. Like life in NYC, nothing comes easy, and that includes love.
She lives in New York City and has way too much black in her wardrobe yet can’t stop buying “just one more pair” of black pants. Felice is a happily addicted Bravo and Say Yes to the Dress addict and proud of it. And let’s not get started on House Hunters. Her dream day starts out with iced coffee and ends with Prosecco, because…why shouldn’t it? You can find her procrastinating on FB in her reader group, Felice’s Breakfast Club.
You can find all my books, grouped by series in proper reading order on my website located here:
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Onyx Excerpt Reveal

Title: Onyx
Series: K19 Security Solutions #10
Author: Heather Slade
Genre: Romantic Suspense/Military Romance
Release Date: July 29, 2021

BLURB

He’s an alpha pilot for K19 Security Solutions.

She’s a grieving sister, determined to get answers.
With ONYX by her side, their dark and blackened pasts may have a brighter future.

ONYX

A crash and a coma has grounded me. Without flight, I’m a pilot without wings. I refuse to give up, give in. I need to be back in the air with nothing but gravity threatening me. For now, I’m recovering at the beach, biding my time. The last thing I need is a distraction to deter me from my goals—even if she’s a mirror image of the woman who stole and shattered my heart.

BLANCA

Answers, that’s all I’m after. My sister’s gone, and I’m hellbent on uncovering the truth. This guy—so damn sexy and rugged that it’s no wonder my twin fell for him—has the knowledge I want. I’ll stop at nothing to know what happened. Even if it means getting closer than I know I should. It won’t be easy though—ONYX is one cold and hardened stone.

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EXCERPT

“I ordered a ridiculous amount of food. I’m sorry.”

“Sorry? Are you kidding? I’ll eat whatever you don’t and get dessert on top of it.”
She laughed. “Consider this an official challenge. We have to set a time limit though.”
“I’m up for it. What are you thinking?”
“It’s six fifteen now. Two hours?”
“No problem.”
She smirked. “You’re on.”
“Is there some kind of wager involved?”
“Do you think there should be?”
Oh yeah, I did, but everything I could come up with involved Blanca being in various stages of undress.
“Your face is expressive.”
I looked up from the oysters. “Is it?”
“Very.”
“Are you saying you know what I’m thinking?”
“I’m saying that if you’re thinking what I think you are, you shouldn’t eat any more of those oysters.”
I sat back in the chair. “This is just a trick to keep them all for yourself, isn’t it?”
Blanca slowly shook her head. “Since I’m thinking the same thing you are, I shouldn’t have any more either.”
I laughed out loud and so did she, and then we polished off the remaining so-called aphrodisiacs.
If we’d wagered, I would’ve lost because she was right, there was no way I could finish everything she’d ordered, even with Blanca eating her share of it.
“You bested me, woman.”
She rubbed her belly. “I’m so full I have to go to sleep.”
“Go ahead, I’ll clean up.”
“I can help.”
“Nah, you ordered.”
She smiled and shook her head. “Thanks for today,” she said, leaning down and kissing my cheek. “Thank you for respecting me enough to tell me what’s going on.”
“You deserved to know. It’s your life.”
“Sleep well.” Blanca waved behind her as she walked out of the kitchen.
I thanked her even though I had no intention of sleeping. Truth be told, I couldn’t wait to get started on her book. The minute she told me the kind of books she wrote, it was almost all I could think about.
I put away the leftover food, double-checked the doors and windows were secured everywhere but the room Blanca was in and then remembered I hadn’t put the teams’ cell numbers in her phone like I’d meant to do.
“Knock, knock,” I said, tapping lightly on her door and hoping she wasn’t asleep yet.
“Just a sec.” It took her a minute to open the door and then it was only a crack. “What’s up?”
I told her why I was there.
“Give me another minute, okay?”
I rested against the wall and tried my hardest not to allow my mind to imagine everything she might have been doing before I knocked. Instead, it raced with it. Had she gone into her bedroom intending to take care of any desires brought on by our conversation about the oysters? I knew as soon I was alone, that’s what I’d be doing.
I groaned when all I could picture was Blanca under her bedsheets, one hand between her legs, the other playing with her nipples. I reached into my jeans to adjust myself at the same moment she reopened her door. My hand froze where it was and time seemed to stand still as she looked from my eyes to my groin.
“Is there anything I can do to help?” The idea that she was teasing me was almost enough to make my problem go away, until my eyes met hers and I saw the heat in them. I slowly moved my hand.
“I, uh, wanted to check and my make sure your bedroom window was secured.”
She took one step closer. “You could’ve asked me to do that myself.”
“I also meant to give you contact info for Cowboy and Wasp.”
“Why?”
“Just in case you needed to reach them for anything.”
She took one more step. “Anything?
I grabbed her shoulders and spun her around so her back was against the wall. “No. Not anything,” I said, my lips close enough to hers to touch. “What were you doing in there?”
She raised her chin. “Book research.”
“Jesus,” I groaned before my mouth came crashing down on hers. I put my hands on her ass, digging my fingertips into her flesh, and lifted her. “Put your legs around me,” I demanded. I instinctively ground myself against her heat. “I’ll take care of anything you need, Blanca. Do you understand me?”
“Will you?” Her arms tightened around my neck and I kissed her hard, My tongue delved in to slide against hers; my body pressed hers against the wall. Lust warred against my conscious when she slid one hand under my shirt while the fingers of the other wove into my hair.
When she rolled her hips, I came as close as I had in over a year to having an orgasm brought on by another person. Not able to resist another second, I slid my hand inside the back of the sweatpants she must’ve pulled on in order to come out of the room to talk to me.
I moaned in frustration, knowing I had to stop, when my fingers brushed up against the soft lace of the panties that clung to the curves of her perfect ass. I broke our kiss with a nip at her bottom lip and lowered her legs to the ground.
Blanca’s chest heaved, her eyes glazed over, and her lips were damp and swollen.
Before I changed my mind, I walked into her bedroom and checked the locks on the windows. “I’ll give you those numbers tomorrow, angel,” I said, when she met me at the door.
“Are you seriously about to say good night to me?”
Knowing that if I touched her again, I wouldn’t be able to stop myself from fucking her senseless, I put my hands in my pockets. “Consider what just happened more book research.”
Yeah, it was an asshole move, but it would have been far worse had I followed through and had sex with her.

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AUTHOR BIO

Heather Slade gave herself the gift of writing a book for her own birthday one year. Thirty-plus books later (and counting), she’s hit a couple of best-seller lists and has had the time of her life. For Slade, the joy is in the writing, but nothing makes her happier than hearing from a reader who tells her that she’s made her laugh or cry or gasp or hold her breath or stay up all night because she can’t put one of her books down.

The women she writes are self-confident, strong, with wills of their own, and hearts as big as the Colorado sky. The men are sublimely sexy, seductive alphas who rise to the challenge of capturing the sweet soul of a woman whose heart they’ll hold in the palm of their hand forever. Add in a couple of neck-snapping twists and turns, a page-turning mystery, and a swoon-worthy HEA, and you’ll be holding one of Slade’s books in your hands.
She loves to hear from her readers. You can contact contact her at heather@heatherslade.com
To keep up with Slade’s latest news and releases, please visit her website at http://www.heatherslade.com or click the link below to sign up for her newsletter.

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Flash Point Book Blitz

Flash Point
Luna Joya
(Legacy Series, #5)
Publication date: June 29th 2021
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance

Banish the demon, stop the prophecy, and do not fall in love. Easy, right? Yeah, not so much.

Mina Donovan is a woman of many talents. Fire elemental, psychic, Legacy witch, magical asset for an FBI paranormal task force…she does it all. Her latest struggle? Not crushing on her sexy best friend. Logically, she knows they can’t be together. Too bad her heart has never bothered with logic.

The friend zone is the last place pyro expert Josh wants to be with Mina. Not that he has any choice in the matter. A witch hunter falling for a witch? Not smart. He’ll just have to learn to ignore his attraction to the gorgeous woman who already owns so much of his heart.

If Mina and Josh have any hope of finding their way to happily ever after, they’ll have to banish an all-powerful demon and take down an evil magical organization. Oh, and they’ll also have to figure out how to stop the prophecy that warns a dragon will consume Mina.

It’ll take more than magic to fix this supernatural dilemma.

Goodreads / Amazon

EXCERPT:

Chapter One

The staked witch burst into flames. Mina swore and jumped clear of the blaze. By the powers, she’d lit the wrong target with her elemental magic.

Again.

At least it’d only been a mannequin.

The camera above the door blinked a steady red, a judgment of her failure. Her boss could be watching right now. Or worse—her sisters.

Embarrassment sent hot tingles across her skin, and her pulse thudded louder in her ears than the massive fan above. Why couldn’t she control her powers?

If this had been one of her video games, she’d wield her magic with precision worthy of a stupendous title. Something inspiring. Something enviable. Something that would make her, Mina Donovan, legendary.

Second spare to the heir of a ruling witch family? Yeah, not so much.

Reality sucked in every supernatural way. Or at least it had these last few weeks.

Her actual targets—giant cotton balls tacked to a wall across the room—mocked her with their bright white while the mannequin and its formerly Mean-Girls-esque you-can’t-sit-with-us designer threads burned like a tiki torch.

“You missed.” Of course her district attorney sister picked that moment to walk into the room. Delia was everything Mina wasn’t—accomplished, distinguished, polished. Never mind how her sister’s blue-eyed, blonde-haired dressed-to-the-elevens flawlessness compared to her own frizzy-curled, height-deprived, rolled-out-of-bed look. “Unless you’re practicing to light one of us up like a witchy sparkler?”

“Hardly.” Being recruited to a secret FBI task force right after college had seemed cool. But it should’ve come with a neon warning: “All loved ones may be collateral damage.” Last night, her oldest sister and baby niece had almost died. Not her fault entirely, but that didn’t ease her guilt. Or help her get a grip on her powers. The now flaming mannequin was proof of that. “What happened to safety cones and boring bulls-eyes for training? Whose idea was it to put humanish targets in here anyway?”

“The boss’s. A13 wanted to test your aim so you won’t torch us out in the field. After this little demonstration, I’ll be sure to stay out of the line of—”

“Don’t say it.” Mina jabbed the button for the secondary exhaust system to blast out her know-it-all sister’s opinions as much as smoke. If she’d heard one bad fire joke, she’d heard them all from her snarky sisters.

The roar of the combined fans wasn’t enough to shut Delia up. “Good thing this place is retrofitted for magical elements training. One wrong spark in LA, and the whole city burns.”

Not the reminder Mina needed right now. She changed the subject. “Who decided on the witch hat and the giant demon dummy?” Red-sequined horns sparkled in the light from the fire.

“My fiancé has a sick sense of humor. You started that little inferno. You going to put it out?”

“Yes.” She hoped. But when she pulsed a thread of magic toward the mannequin, the flames shot higher than its pointed hat.

“Did you mean to make the fire worse?”

“Yep.”

Delia’s yeah-right look was a speed dial straight to Mina’s self-doubt.

If the place had been made of anything but concrete, the fire would’ve raced across the room taking everything out. As it was, black circles spread in a messy scrawl on the ceiling.

Mina closed her eyes. The orange glow burned behind her lids, a flashing pyrotechnics show that didn’t help her maxed-out stress levels. With a deep breath, she imagined darkness where there was light. When she dared a peek, the fire was gone. Thank the powers.

“Quick work.” Delia sounded almost impressed. “Maybe we should race sometime.”

“Right, except if you’d used your air element, we’d both be unconscious. Me from oxygen deprivation and you from magic drain.” Petty, but true.

Delia’s powers would have her blonde butt on the floor within seconds—the price of her whirlwind-slinging element. Then the designer diva would be pissed off that she’d gotten soot on her suit. The tornado-tosser looked anything but amused. “Okay, super witch.” Which sounded like a not-so-subtle reference to another word ending in –itch. This was big sister bossiness at its worst. “Care to hit any of the real targets now? I thought you’d been working on this during your training sessions.”

“Don’t you have something better to do? Like making out with your fiancé? Since that’s all I see you doing these days when you’re training.” Mina wiggled her fingers in air quotes with the last word.

“Jealous?”

“Nope.” She totally was. Legacy daughters—those witches born to rule the witch Senate—were traditionally forced into arranged matches for powerful bloodlines and big bank accounts. But not her sisters. No. They’d each risen above that to find true freaking love. “So why don’t you get back to your guy instead of interrupting me?”

“Don’t be such a brat. I was just checking on you.”

Because Mina was the screw-up baby sister. Not as bad as their brother, but he’d set the bar low. As in conspiring with the Revelare, a demon-led organization looking to overthrow the witch Senate—that kind of low. “I can do this by myself.”


Author Bio:

Luna Joya writes sexy hexy romances in the award-winning Legacy Series.

Fluent in sarcasm and penal code, Luna prosecutes by day and writes at night. She loves history, especially Los Angeles and Hollywood lore.

A survivor of traumatic brain injury with steel body parts, she lives in SoCal with her combat veteran husband and their two-pound terror of a rescue pup.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram


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A Mercenary to Love Release Blitz

A Mercenary to Love by Landra Graf

Book 4 in the Bad Boys of Space series

Word Count: 62,159
Book Length: NOVEL
Pages: 247

Genres:

ACTION AND ADVENTURE
EROTIC ROMANCE
FUTURISTIC AND SCIENCE FICTION
SCIENCE FICTION

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Book Description

There’s only one thing she wants to steal—his heart.

When computer genius Sampson Morales’ latest security measures fail to prevent the kidnapping of an Allied Planetary Union Ambassador’s child, he has no choice but to track and save the kid himself…especially if he wants to be paid.

Zasha Gustaf believed fighting with the Humans First movement could redeem her mercenary past, but when they use her intel to kidnap an innocent, she starts to have her doubts. Running into the only man she’s ever loved and who’s on the same trail is a sign. She commits to helping Sampson stop this group from sacrificing another blameless person, but she has another motive.

Sampson and Zasha have been down this road before, except last time it led to betrayal and heartache. He can’t trust her, and her attempts at redemption are met with constant rebuke, but when everyone, even the universe, is in danger, relying on each other is the only way forward.

Is a second chance possible for either of them…or will the past repeat itself?

Reader advisory: This book contains scenes of child endangerment, child abandonment, violence and murder.

Excerpt

Whenever the planet Saturn had crossed Sampson’s mind, he’d always believed stepping foot on its surface would involve jail time, or at the very least a spot in front of a tribunal. That he was being welcomed with open arms there, the land of the uppers, via official invitation no less, had made sleep near impossible for the last three solar days. Now, here he traveled among sprawling homes with green grass lawns, ponds of clear water…enough splendor to rattle the nerve endings of any man who’d grown up poor, near starving and covered in filth the majority of the time.

“Pull your mouth off the ground, kid. Bugs exist here.” Lee, ex-assassin and weapon expert, whipped her long black ponytail over her shoulder as their holo-vehicle came to a stop in front of Ambassador Al Smith’s house.

“You never told me how beautiful the ambassador planet was.”

She scoffed and re-checked her belt that was normally stacked with knives lining the leather. Now only two remained. “The thing about beauty is that it comes with a price. No sense salivating over something you won’t want to pay for.”

Except, maybe I do.

Sampson had gone his whole life without much. Joining up with Smith’s crew, back when the ambassador was a lowly body collector, Sampson had earned his place. When he’d ditched the Body Collection Service and joined the crew of Gina, he’d found a family. Regardless of the gains, there still existed this gnawing need inside him for more.

“You could have something like this, bet on it. Show these pansy fools your big brain in action.” Lee nudged him on the shoulder before she hopped out of the vehicle. “Enough sitting around talking. Let’s do this.”

Sure, he probably could reach living on Saturn status. Al had. The captain of a death barge was now a parliament ambassador, a fairy-tale story like the ones his mother used to spout over their dinner of broth and stale food cubes. The possibility of living on a wealthy planet in a fancy house tempted, but he wanted another kind of freedom. Living here would only be another prison of servitude. The desire to roam space, go where he wanted when he wanted, to eat what he wanted… All those wants drove him on.

“Welcome to my home,” Al called out from the front door, all fancy robes, ginger beard tamed and his infamous nose ring a thing of the past.

Sampson gave a single nod out of respect and instinctually reached to tug on the edge of the beanie he typically wore on the ship. “Thanks for the invite.”

“Would you like a tour?” The older man’s booming voice carried across the lawn with ease.

Sampson patted down his ginger hair and glanced at Lee, whose raised eyebrow told him everything he needed to know. “Perhaps another time. This is supposed to be a business trip, and I’d like to get to work right away.”

The words rolled off Sampson’s tongue like contaminated waste in a slip drive, foreign and unwelcome. He wanted to throw caution to the wind, take a tour or enjoy a fancy lunch—which was exactly why Lee had come along, to keep him focused.

The invitation from Al had come in a solar week before and Gina, the ship’s artificial intelligence, had been eager to share with Sampson how his expertise was requested along with the possible payday involved.

Enough crinkle to bathe in, according to Gina. Their co-captains, Toni and Emilio, were busy with another gig and had graciously offered up Gina along with the remainder of the crew to escort him. More like babysit. The implication stung a bit but made sense. Gina wasn’t a cheap ship, and she’d been hijacked before. Though if he completed this job, the flash was his for the taking, and maybe…

I’ll have enough to buy Gina.

“Straighten up, kid. Don’t let yourself be intimidated by him. You’re smarter.” Lee casually whispered these words on their walk up.

The encouragement soothed his shaken soul a bit. The last time he’d encountered Al Smith, Sampson had been indentured to Al’s body collection barge with a twenty-year service tag. Al hadn’t been horrible to work for, but he’d still been in charge and not afraid to stow a young boy in a small crappy room in the underbelly of the ship.

Sampson and Lee reached the front entrance, and he took note of the pair of guards posted right inside. Business trip indeed.

“Yes, and once you get inside, we can chat. You don’t mind if the guards search you?” Al asked with a sheepish smile.

Trust doesn’t come easy anywhere in this damn galaxy. They’d been searched three times since they’d gotten off Gina’s shuttle at the landing port. No such thing as a small measure for the planet housing parliament’s ambassadors.

Lee smiled, a wicked fucking grin equal parts ‘screw you’ and ‘sure thing.’ “Do what you have to, but my knives stay. I already put away half of them. The rest is for your protection and Sampson’s. Anything happens to him, and you’ll be answering to your sister personally if I don’t get you first.”

Pride swelled in Sampson’s chest. Family. These people cared about him, though sometimes he wished they would let him run his own missions. Let me take charge. Sure, he’d been told he was in charge on this one by Emilio, but Lee still played the role of big bad sister no matter what.

Al held up his hands. “Sure thing. Just making sure no explosives and whatnot. Loyda would be pissed if I didn’t follow protocol.”

Sampson nodded in agreement, standing up straight and spreading his arms. “Then let’s wrap this and get to it. Time is flash.”

Buy Links

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First For Romance

About the Author

Landra Graf

Landra Graf consumes at least one book a day, and has always been a sucker for stories where true love conquers all. She believes in the power of the written word, and the joy such words can bring. In between spending time with her family and having book adventures, she writes romance with the goal of giving everyone, fictional or not, their own happily ever after.

You can visit Landra’s website here, find her Amazon author page here and follow her on Pinterest here.

Giveaway

Enter to win a fabulous gift package and get a First For Romance Gift Card!

Landra Graf A Mercenary to Love Giveaway

LANDRA GRAF IS GIVING AWAY THIS FABULOUS PRIZE TO ONE LUCKY WINNER. ENTER HERE FOR YOUR CHANCE TO WIN A LOVELY GIFT PACKAGE AND GET AND YOUR FREE LANDRA GRAF ROMANCE BOOK! Notice: This competition ends on 3rd August 2021 at 5pm GMT. Competition hosted by Totally Entwined Group.

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Amore Release Blitz

Title: Amore
Series: The Fated Series
Author: H.L Packer
Genre: Fighter Romance (Mafia World)
Release Date: July 20, 2021


Tia
I’m drowning.
Barely keeping my head above water.
The weight of expectation is dragging me down as I attempt to break free.
One moment of selfish weakness haunts me, anchoring me to this life.
And now he’s here. My weakness; tempting and delicious.

Cian
My fists are all that keep me going; all that keep her safe.
Fighting is all I know.
But when those fists take me away and thrust me into another world surrounded by enemies who are pretending to be friends, I falter.
When fate intervenes and my heart is on the line, which one will I choose?


 



H.L. Packer is, quite frankly, a busy bee.

An avid reader as a child, her love for all things written waned into adulthood, the excitement of real life things taking over. But when her life slowed down as she finished her office job for maternity leave, her husband purchased her an e-reader, and that obsession was rekindled.

Quickly she went from reader to reviewer, and then from reviewer to blogger; street teams and promo tours galore. When she began collating her own book boxes over at Romance Readers Book Box UK and had the opportunity to include her own words and worlds, the characters began talking.

Those cheeky characters quickly found themselves written down on the page, and her first series was in progress.

When she is not coordinating her worlds, you can find her running around after her free-spirited three children, and husband, or tending to the dogs, bearded dragons, and snakes that also reside with them.

A break can be found soaking in a bubble bath or enjoying a glass of wine, often still with a book in her hand.

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