Thursday, April 30, 2015

Addicted to Writing Presents: Storm's Passion by Christine Young

The fifth book in the Twelve Dancing Princesses Series

ISBN: 978-1-62420-143-1
Author: Christine Young

Genre: Historical Romance
Excerpt Heat Level: 2
Book Heat Level: 3


Reviewed by Kinky Vanilla

By all accounts, Storm Graham is brazen, strong-willed, and beautiful. She despises her father and loves her horses. So when Storm discovers that her father has signed a contract that forces her (and her horses) into the hands of one of the region's wealthiest and most despicable bachelors, she does not take it lying down.

After evaluating her options, she determines that her best bet is to convince the region's wealthiest bachelor to marry her. She believes that Hadden Johnston's money and power can protect her from the evil clutches of Charles Robertson (and his father). In return, she can offer her interest in the family's horse and brewery businesses. The problem? Hadden and Storm are merely business acquaintances and neither is really interested in getting married.

Desperate times call for desperate measures. Storm has nothing to lose by proposing marriage. Well, maybe a little pride. And Hadden knows all too well the ugliness that lurks in Charles' mind. How could he not try to intervene on her behalf? Combine that with the sparks of attraction between Hadden and Storm, and you'll end up with a marriage of convenience that had me wanting my own Hadden.

"This is an outrageous game you're playing Miss Graham. But I do understand how loathsome marrying Charles would be. I wouldn't wish it on my best friend and for some reason I've a need to protect you." -  Hadden Johnston

Rich, powerful, and cruel, Charles is also not one to take things lying down...

Storm's Passion is a fast-paced, easy-to-read novel. I read it over a weekend. Luckily for us readers, the marriage turns out to be more than Hadden and Storm bargained for. They have a chemistry that is fun to read and watch grow. Storm isn't the stereotypical damsel in distress. She is a heroine that you really get behind and pull for as the story plays out.

I think that Storm's Passion is a great choice for people who enjoy historical romance stories. I must admit, I was a little thrown off by the book cover at first. It didn't really scream historical romance to me. But don't let all that hunkiness fool you. The book is set in England in 1818.

I look forward to reading more of Christine Young's work.


Life strikes Storm Graham a shattering blow when she learns her father has bartered her to a man she detests. Storm is beautiful, self–assured and fiercely independent, and refuses to be a pawn in her father’s schemes, yet she can find no way out of this bargain made in hell. Going on the offensive she asks the wealthiest man on the eastern coast of England to marry her, never believing she might fall in love.


For Hadden Johnston life has provided everything he ever wanted, including a sanctuary for homeless children. He is wealthy, handsome and happily unencumbered...until stunning Storm Graham marches into his life and proposes a marriage of convenience. Yet this type of marriage to a woman who inflames his senses is far from acceptable. If he’s going to be tied down, he will move heaven and earth to have this woman warming his bed.


“Did you or did you not set out to seduce me?” he queried, laughing a bit inside but relishing her innocence.
“Yes, yes I did,” she told him.
Her honesty might just be his undoing. “What if I told you your plan was a success? Consider me thoroughly seduced and ready for your next plot.”
“Oh, I don’t have one.” She lowered her lashes before looking back to him.
He bent over and kissed her, their lips melding together. Take it slow. Don’t scare her. You don’t want her to tell you to stop. He groaned, bloody hell that would be hard. For a moment, he wished she did have an agenda because he bloody well wasn’t sure about his.
His tongue traced the seam of her lips, parting them slightly. They’d been down this road before, and he hoped she remembered the other kisses, sweet poignant kisses but innocent as hell.
Smiling when he heard a tiny moan of pleasure, he deepened the kiss. His hands around her waist, he pulled her closer, and the feel of her breasts against his chest sent a funnel cloud of heat coursing through him.
Sensations so deep he’d never felt anything like these flowed inside. Spreading his hand on her back, he waited for another response as his tongue reached inside her mouth, tasting her, exploring.
She ran her fingers through his hair then tugged his head closer before releasing him and their first contact.
“Is this how seduction feels?” Her warm breath feathered across his cheek.
When he looked down, he saw breasts and shadowed, titillating cleavage. Deep evocative sensations pulsed through him. He moved his hand from her waist across her bared shoulder, the contrast mercuric. The urge to dip his finger into the valley between her breasts overpowered common sense. She’d purposely designed the dress for him, for his touch. She was lush and ripe, and he realized she was not protesting as he had expected.


Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Addicted to Writing Presents: Star Crossed by Christine Young

Star Crossed
Christine Young

Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 2

Ireland in 1817, when tensions are high between Protestants and Catholics and faey people guide the fate of villagers. A lovely Catholic lass stumbles upon the weakly ritual fisticuffing between Irish lads. She falls into the lap of a handsome young Protestant. Family ties, grudges, and two conniving faeries threaten their budding love. But the faeries outsmart themselves when they hijack a time machine that has mysteriously appeared in their forest.


The heat from the afternoon sun felt wonderful--enchanting--dreamy. When she tried to sit up, the earth whirled around her again. She wanted to feel indignant but she'd brought this on herself. She didn't quite understand why she wanted to convince this arrogant oaf she wasn't a little girl.
"You mind telling me why you tackled me?" he asked.
Casey turned her head to look at the young man. He leaned on one elbow, nonchalantly plucking a blade of grass and sticking it in his mouth. His dark black hair appeared rakishly windblown and his grin was bordered by dimples on both sides. She had the craziest urge to reach up and trace the line of his lips with her finger.
"I don't believe in fighting," she said. "It's absolutely stupid for the bunch of you to come out here on the Sabbath and fight when the rest of the week you are all bosom buddies."
"Stupid, you say?" he queried. "You dare to call me stupid?" he laughed and extended his hand. "Let me help you up. I don't think I'm ready to meet your dah with pistols on the dueling field. So I think I'd best be seeing you home."
An inferno swept through Casey. She didn't know if she still reeled from the impact or if the dizziness was something else--something magical--something supernatural. When he looked at her, she trembled and her face heated. She touched her hands to her cheeks. They felt cold and clammy. Afraid if he touched her again she might melt, she stared at a puffy cloud floating whimsically overhead.
He bent closer to her. The scent of mint filled the tiny space between them.
"You all right? Did you hear what I said?" he asked, touching a finger to the pulse throbbing at her neck. She tried to bat his hand away even while her heartbeat pounded faster, and she couldn't inhale a decent breath of air.
"Stop it," he said, and paused for a moment in his assessment of her health. "I think you will live."
"Of course I will and I can find my own way home. I'm eighteen. I turned two months ago."
"That old?" He laughed and she wanted to escape. Yet some little demon inside told her he was the last person she wanted to hide from. She felt as if her body had been taken over by something unearthly, something mysterious or filled with enchantment.
"You're going to have a black eye," she said and touched the bruise forming around his eye. "Does it hurt?"
"Come on, lass," he said still holding out his hand and sidestepping her question.
"You're ignoring me," she told him, getting up without accepting his hand and dusting off hers on her skirt.
"My apologies," he laughed, bowing slightly laugh lines crinkling his brow. "It only hurts when you remind me of it."
"Then I won't be reminding you," she said quickly.
"Casey," her brother said as he rounded the top of the hill. "You coming or do you mean to dawdle here all day?"
She jumped and pressed her fingers along her skirts to smooth them all the while feeling not a wee bit guilty, but a whole lot guilty. And I have nothing to feel ashamed of. "What are you doing here? I thought you left me to fend for myself," Casey said feeling a moment of loss at the thought her brother would be walking her home and not Kelly.


Casey pushed on the green grass, trying to unwind herself from the man beneath her, but fell again. All right, Casey lass, you're in a heap of trouble right now with no way out. You are seeing the earth whirl and tumble around and you're on top of a brute of a man--a Protestant.

"All right, lads, we'll meet here next Sunday, same place, same time," her brother's voice filtered through the air as if it floated in the fog that surrounded Casey.

Once again she pushed on the damp grass and didn't seem to make headway, her arms feeling as if they'd changed to soggy twine. Don't you abandon me, Patrick O'Connell. You know I have the Devil's own luck. If you leave me here, I'll never forgive you.

"What about Casey?" one of her brother's friend asked. "She looks a little worse for the encounter."

"Do you think we should leave her here--with Kelly?"

"He's a right stand-up guy. Of course you can leave her here. We'll see her home," a Shaunasey said.

"Well, Kelly is a fine bloke. He won't hurt her. In fact with my feisty lil' sister involved, I fear for him--not her," Patrick said laughing. "She'll do as she pleases. She always does. How can I control her when father cannot? She does not need a second father." He shrugged his shoulder and looked behind him at his little sister as he strolled down the hill.

"She's hurt," another friend called after Patrick. "What kind of brother are you?"

"One who is tired of looking after an accident prone little lass. She has to take responsibility for herself sometime, does she not?"

"She is that," one commented. "You rescue her night and day."

~ * ~

"You should have blessed her with a wee bit o'Irish coordination," Oran said dryly as he flew to a hovering position near the girl.

"And you should remember what our blessed mother told us, 'if you cannot say anythin' nice, don't say anything at all'." Moya rose above the flower petal, her wings buzzing with her anger toward her brother.

"I didn't say anything that wasn't the truth." Oran whistled out of tune for a moment. "We could kidnap them."

"And that is your solution to everything?" Moya pointed one finger at him and shook it. "Why, Oran, I believe you may fancy the lass for yourself. I will not have it. Go play your tricks on someone else's charge. She is mine to see to safety and long life. And don't be forgettin' the lad is yours to watch over."

"You best stem your anger, Moya. You're wings have turned golden," Oran said with a hearty chuckle.

~ * ~

"Let Kelly handle her," Casey's brother said with a light chuckle. "He lost and so he must deal with the object of that loss and assume the consequences. It's only fair."

"Hey!" Kelly said, "Don't leave me here with your sister. It will be hell to pay. She's a little girl. What will your father say?"

The others laughed. "Just don't take too long to decide what to do with her. Little girl or not, father will come after you with his pistol."

I just turned eighteen years old--little girl--how dare he…

"Bloody hell, Patrick. What are you thinking?" Kelly cried out.

"I'm thinking the Catholics won this fight. What are you thinking?" Patrick turned his back on the pair and whistled a jaunty tune as he strolled down the hill.

"Revenge will be sweet. Next Sunday…" Kelly shook his fist at the departing back of Casey's brother.

From what seemed like a great distance Casey heard the moan emanating from inside her battered and bruised body. She squished her eyes together, wishing her head didn't pound so fiercely, and the ground spin so wildly. "Who are you?" she whispered next to the man's chest while a soft spring breeze whispered against her heated face.

"Who am I?" the man chuckled. "Lass, you are the one who landed atop me. I should be inquiring into who you are? Only I know." His hands rested around her waist and squeezed as if he were testing--perhaps exploring--entirely inappropriate. Yet for some strange reason, Casey didn't mind the supposed to be unwanted attention. "And I don't think your brother should have left you here with the likes of me. I'm afraid I've landed myself in a dangerous predicament. And I'm thinkin' one that will be very hard to explain."

"Shame on you," Casey said. "You take liberties." The words stole her breath and she had to lean on Kelly once more in order to minimize the pounding of her head and the strange feelings emanating from where his hands were.

"I only want to remove you from--my--ah--person. And if I were taking liberties with you, lass, you'd be near swooning with passion."

"Ah, it seems you are a wee bit arrogant," she opened her eyes and gazed into the bluest eyes she'd ever seen. "The color of a summer sky," she whispered to him, still feeling woozy and not quite sure what he'd just told her--but thinking at the moment something besides the fall caused the earth to spin and the sky to tilt with a crazy, wild abandon.

"What is, lass?"

"Your eyes," she said, struggling against him and finally rolling to the side so she lay sprawled on the grass, staring into the sky she'd referred to a moment earlier and watching a white billowy cloud float past. "I'm not a little girl," she told him. "Don't ever call me that again."

"Then you want me to tell lies?" he asked with a lazy half-smile that stole Casey's heart and left her floundering. "I dinna think I can do that."

"It isn't a lie," she said, trying to sound indignant, yet frustrated beyond anything she'd ever felt before.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Addicted to Writing Presents Tell Tale Tuesday: Legacy of Angels by Genie Gabriel on Sale for $0.99

Legacy of Angels
Genie Gabriel
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 3


Claudia deGras was forced into prostitution by her mother at age twelve. In spite of the trauma and abuse, she dreams of a respectful life filled with joy, laughter and the love of one man. Ironically, that man is Patrick O'Shea, a priest facing demons of his own. Since seminary, he has suffered memory loss and darkness at the edges of his vision that extend into his soul. They are drawn together in a deeply emotional journey of healing that becomes a life-and-death challenge to outwit the twisted man-beast who has vowed revenge against all he thinks have wronged him.
"I'm not safe anywhere." Terror beat in Claudia deGras' heart, pulsed through her veins, shut down any rational thought. Get out of here!


She bolted toward the door, not daring to look back as the sound of heavy footsteps followed her.

The old brown sedan sitting in the driveway always had the keys in the ignition. Most of the time, it started without much protest.

Claudia flung open the door and cranked the key. The engine caught and roared as she shoved the accelerator to the floor. Two doors banged shut as the old Buick slid sideways on the gravel, then found traction on the pavement.

Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Patrick O'Shea on the wide bench seat beside her, his hand braced against the dashboard for balance, but his face reflected his normal serenity.

Could she trust him? Did she have a choice? And where was she going?

She eased her foot off the accelerator and settled the old sedan into a speed that wouldn't get them stopped by the police, though patrols were rare on this sparsely traveled road in Eastern Oregon.

While she drove the highway in silence, the childhood memories of curses and shouting and fists landing heavy blows on her body receded, and her panicked mind calmed down.

No one had harmed her today. In fact, over the last few weeks the O'Shea siblings, including Patrick, had rearranged their lives to protect her from the man-beast who stalked her.

She shivered.

The man-beast was the real danger.

"Take the next exit." Patrick's deep voice interrupted Claudia's thoughts.

Patrick's wisdom and gentleness had provided a balm to Claudia's soul many times during the time she had been recovering from her physical wounds at his mother's rambling farmhouse. Today, she discovered the emotional fears were deeper than she imagined. Facing the man-beast again--even in her memory--pushed her into a panicked flight.

Now reason was returning and adrenaline ebbing, and Claudia floundered. Once again, Patrick's reassuring voice provided an anchor, so she followed his instructions. Down a paved road for several miles, flanked on either side by acres of rangeland turning dusty gold in the early summer heat. Then another turn onto a graveled road with no other traffic. Finally off any road entirely, bumping over the rangeland to come to a stop under a sheltering copse of trees near a lake.

After Claudia turned off the engine, Patrick opened the car door. "Come with me."

He walked toward the lake, not looking back.

Claudia watched him for long minutes. Was he simply going to leave her?

The land sloped downward where Patrick now walked, making it seem like he was disappearing. When only the top of his head was still in view, panic seized Claudia once again. "Wait!"

She jumped out of the car and slammed the door behind her, running to catch up with Patrick. She topped the knoll and stopped, her chest rising and falling rapidly with exertion and fright.

Patrick stood looking up at her, the same serene expression on his face. Then he turned and continued walking to the water's edge. Hidden in the tall reeds was a raft that looked as if it would sink with the weight of the family of ducks swimming nearby. However, when Patrick climbed on, the craft barely dipped before stabilizing. He turned and reached out his hand in invitation. Cautious but curious, Claudia climbed aboard.

Using a long pole, Patrick pushed them across the lake and under a rocky outcropping. He secured the raft to a sawed-off tree stump that served as a pier post for a make-shift dock and stepped off. "Be careful. It can be slippery."

Intrigued, Claudia once again took Patrick's hand and climbed off the raft. They walked toward a sheer rock cliff topped by ruins of what could have been an ancient stone cathedral. However, as they reached the cliff, Patrick slipped through a notch in one of the rocks. Once inside, he retrieved a flashlight from a pocket in the rock wall and turned it on, revealing a narrow corridor. Claudia followed him down a winding pathway for what seemed like miles. Patrick walked without hesitation, turning down side tunnels until she felt totally disoriented.

At last he stopped in front of a solid rock wall. Well, it appeared solid. Until he slid aside what must have been a doorway, revealing into a cavernous room.

"Where are we?" Claudia asked.

Patrick turned with a half-smile. "Safe. That's what you wanted, right?"