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Sunday, September 13, 2015

Sunday Peek!

The Sunday Peek is an opportunity to get a buzz going for your soon-to-be released or re-released novel.  

Post a tempting 300-word snippet from your most recent endeavor. Be sure to add your website/blog link, a release date if you have one, and one link to where your other books can be found. Example: Your Amazon Author's Page.
Share your participation with our
ready-to-go tweet or make your own!

See what's next on Exquisite Quills' Sunday Peek!  


Peggy Jaeger said...

by Peggy Jaeger

“Have you ever been friends with a girl before?”
she finally asked.
“Yes. Friends.”
“Have a beer and shoot some pool friends? Or the kind with benefits?”
She laughed out loud, shook her head and grinned. “Have you ever been friends with a girl without having sex mixed into the equation?”
“Not since I was sixteen,” he admitted and then felt his neck heat. “Why?”
She cocked her head again. “It’s no secret I’m attracted to you, too. I think my reaction to the way you kissed me proves it.”
“Why am I hearing a ‘but’?”
Her lips twitched at the corners. “But I don’t jump into bed with a man because I’m attracted to him.”
“I never thought you did.”
“Good to know.”
He cocked his head. “So, what’s being friends got
to do with anything?”
Clarissa sighed and settled back against the
doorframe. “Can I be honest?”
“I would hope so.”
“I’ve been hearing about your reputation with
women since I moved here, and I’m not looking to be the flavor of the week.”
He stared at her for a second as hurt washed through him. “When you say honest, you don’t pull any punches.”

Gilli Allan said...

From FLY OR FALL. Currently a 99p/99c bargain!

Our faces moved slowly together. Like all the other kisses we had so far exchanged they began tenderly. The dry, velvet texture of these kisses was quickly displaced, for this time there were no constraints; I wasn’t drunk, he was not bruised and sore, with a lacerated tongue. Soon our lips softened and parted, exposing to one another the damp, vulnerable inner membrane of our mouths. His tongue began to probe, touching and withdrawing, over and over again until I was maddened by it and began to mimic him. Then commenced the deep exploration of each other’s mouth – the lapping and licking, the sucking, and tasting – the drawing in of the essence of the other. When our mouths at last disconnected we were gasping and laughing with pleasure and surprise.
‘My, oh my,’ he said on an exhaling breath and licked his lips. ‘That was even better without the tears.’ As his breathing steadied, he stroked my hair and my cheek reflectively; I had the sense he was debating with himself. I wondered what he’d meant when he said he was scared.
‘More brandy?’ He could just about reach the bottle without disentangling our legs. We clinked glasses and drank. ‘So, what are we going to do now?’ Surely he wasn’t serious? What had started almost as curiosity, a need to taste the forbidden in order to know, be freed, and move on, had become an imperative.
‘Are you teasing? You know I want to go to bed with you.’
‘Yeah, but …’ The flicker of doubt I saw in his face undermined my fragile confidence. (@gilliallan)

Erin OQuinn said...

I'm 8K into a sequel to the novella BURNS TOO DEEP.
Even with his most striking features shuttered in sleep, Burns was still a powerfully sensual and striking man. The dark shadows cast by his lashes … the long, chiseled cheekbones … the wide, generous mouth and sensitive lips… Thomas’ prick rose and saluted his sleeping companion, and he grinned. His groin was jammed tight enough into his bedmate’s thigh that the man might wake any moment and return the favor.

No. Let him sleep.

He tried his best to relax, but memories of last night rushed along with the blood into his tumescent prick, and Burns stirred in his embrace.

“Thomas Fitzgerald.”

The lilt, the lingering on every syllable, the husky burr—Burns' voice drove him crazy with its understated promise.

“Maidin mhaith, a mo chroí.” His Irish-Gaelic had slipped out, wishing good morning to his sweetheart. He felt the blush, and he blessed the dim lighting.

“Guid mornin, Thomas. Póg mo thoin, póg mé, o mo ghrá, an every whaur in between.”

Burns had just told him in old-fashioned Irish-Gaelic to kiss his ass, in the most intimate way possible, and he’d added a very private endearment. Thomas felt his prick go from half-speed to turbo and leaned into a prolonged kiss.
The novella is here:

Janice Croom said...

She wanted a reconciliation. She got a murder.
Death of an Island Tart. 99 cents until September 15.

“You’re here early, Reverend.” Terrence and Sheila walked over to me, hand-in-hand.

Despite Sheila’s presence, it made me happy just to see him, like that first warm day after a harsh winter. Just when you think you’ll never be warm again, the sun comes out, the snow melts and everything is better.

Terrence had grown a beard. He always did when we visited the island. I loved how it felt against my skin, like—

“Kadence?” Terrence looked to Sheila. “Thought you said the Reverend was here.”

“I lied… Forgive me? I didn’t want to spoil your surprise.”

He dropped her hand, then turned to me. “I didn’t think you’d ever come.”

“I know. Don’t worry. I understand about Hootchie-Momma Barbie.”

Sheila came over and patted my arm. “Now, now, that’s not nice.”

She got in one good pat before my eyes told her she’d better not try for two. Sheila pulled Terrence to the loveseat on the other side of the room, like somehow putting that little bit of distance between us would help her cause.

“Now that I’m here,” I said, “we can just wrap Miss Thing up in a Hefty bag and set her out with the rest of the trash.”

Sheila smiled at me like everything was wonderful. What was wrong with this girl? Surely she realized she was about to get gone.

“I need to talk to Kadence alone,” Terrence said.

Sheila turned sideways, dangled one leg over Terrence’s, and stroked his face. She was marking him like a dog marks a tree.

Death of an Island Tart Available on Amazon
Janice Croom web site

Andrea Cooper said...

Viking, Brock's journey to falling in love. Viking Flame, prequel to Viking Fire #99cents

Near the beach, the man quit rowing and yanked out a knife.
Bram didn’t move. “You go against your Captain’s orders t—”
“You made it to shore. That’s all we’s promised.” He spat at Bram’s boots. “No one said anything about you living afterwards.” When he dove forward, Bram ducked to the side and snatched the sailor’s arm, pinning it to his side.
“Cease, or I will break your arm.” If it wasn’t for his pledge to Morga, he’d have snapped the man’s arm already. Once his contract was signed with the Laird, then he’d be free to fight in Ireland—or at least against other Vikings and rival Irishmen. The man continued to struggle, “Or perhaps a leg as well? What will your Captain say if you return without your weapon and injured? Will he be merciful and allow you to recover or throw you to the sharks?”
“Heathen scum!” He twisted his body to escape Bram’s grip.
As he did, Bram snapped the man’s wrist backward and the first mate let out a howl before the blade came closer to Bram’s chest.
“Now, hand me the knife.” When the man glared at him, he increased pressure on the bent wrist. “Or this heathen might do worse so that not even the sharks would want you.”
The first mate gulped and released his hold of the knife.
Bram broke his hold and snatched the blade out of the air before it hit the water. “Tell your Captain, I will not forget his hospitality nor will any of my eight brothers.”
The man paled. “What brings you to our island? To rape our women and pillage our churches?”
“No.” Bram rose and tucked the small blade into his boot. “To find my bride.”

Kate Hill said...

From the Shadowed Box Set
by Kate Hill
Released on August 24, 2015

Henrie awoke with an uneasy feeling. Her muscles tightened and she sat up quickly.

Oliver stood near the dresser, searching through her open travel bag.

He held up a red lace bra and sniffed it. "Interesting."

"What the hell are you doing?" she demanded, springing out of bed, not caring that she might as well have been naked. Her snug T-shirt, the material so thin it was see-through, and tiny boy shorts offered little coverage.

His smoldering gaze swept her. "I didn't think you'd mind if I looked through your things--not after you helped yourself to mine."

If she hadn't been so furious, she'd have been taken aback.

He tossed the bra aside and continued his search. He pulled out specially made handcuffs that were strong enough to restrain most demons.

He smiled. "Are these for business or pleasure?"

Marie Laval said...

A SPELL IN PROVENCE by Marie Laval, £1.49 for a few days only!

Shivering in the cold breeze despite her shawl, Amy joined the guests lining up to be greeted by Fabien, who in true lord of the manor style, stood tall and imposing at the top of the steps, with torches burning on either side of him.
He might wear a black dining suit and a crisp white shirt instead of a suit of armour, but there was something untamed, fundamentally uncivilized and proprietary about the way he surveyed the crowd – as if he truly owned everything and everyone, like Frédéric had said, and Amy was seized by an irresistible, irrational and overwhelming urge to flee. She didn’t want to speak to Fabien Coste, didn’t want to put up with his arrogant ways. He could keep his fancy chateau, his contacts and glamorous guests, she didn’t need him. She would walk home. It wasn’t that far.
She was about to step aside when he looked down and their gaze met. Shadows danced on his face. The torches hissed in the breeze, their flames shooting high in the air and reflecting in his green eyes, giving them a deep, dangerous glow. For the space of a heartbeat, the noise of conversations around her became distant and fuzzy, and all she could see was him.
He walked down, took her hand and lifted it to his lips. Even though his mouth barely touched her skin, a flash of heat reverberated through her body.
‘Mademoiselle Carter – Amy, you’re here at last.’
It was the first time he’d spoken her first name. He made it sound French, sensual and incredibly romantic. Aimée. Beloved.
‘Shall I escort you inside and introduce you to a few people?’
Panic made her heart flutter and turned her brain to mush.
‘Well, it’s just that …’
He arched a dark eyebrow, looked down, and smiled as if he knew exactly what she was feeling.
‘You’re here now. You might as well make the most of it.’

Marie Laval said...

ANGEL HEART, Regency with a paranormal twist, by Marie Laval

She pushed open the door to the drawing room and hurried inside. Splinter and Rusty ran under her feet, tripping her. Her cry of alarm died on her lips as two strong arms caught her. Surprised, she tilted her head up to look at the tall, dark-haired man holding her against his hard, wide chest. His intense blue eyes held her gaze and sent a shiver down her spine. One side of his weather-beaten face was barred by a long, ragged scar. The thin line of the mouth and the tightness in his jaw gave an impression of controlled anger. For a moment fear gathered in her chest. Then he smiled, a slow, confident smile, and he was transformed into the most handsome man she had ever laid eyes on.
The dogs barked at them furiously. Marie-Ange parted her lips to order them to stop but before she could speak Robert took a few steps forward, an angry scowl twisting his face, his fists clenched by his sides.
‘Let her go at once, sir,’ he warned, ‘or …’
‘Or what?’ The man arched his eyebrows, a mocking smile at the corner of his mouth, as if he dared Robert to come any closer. He shook his head and released her.
‘I will ask you to restrain your puppies, Madame. The three of them,’ he said as he looked down at her.
‘How dare you call me a puppy?’ Robert's face flushed a deep red, and he took another step forward.
Marie-Ange found her voice at last.
‘Rusty. Splinter. Lie down at once.’ She pointed to the rug in front of the fireplace. The dogs whimpered but obeyed. ‘Robert. That's enough. Monsieur was just helping me.’
Robert muttered an apology and crouched beside the dogs to stroke their wet, muddy coats.
‘You must be Capitaine Saintclair,’ she said, tilting her chin up to look at him again.
The papers had been full of sketches and reports about the famous French cuirassiers and she had no difficulty imagining Saintclair in a dark blue uniform, his chest covered with shiny metal plates and his helmet topped by a black horse mane, charging onto the battlefield. His current attire of black breeches and tall leather riding boots topped by a short brown coat did nothing to dispel the heroic image conjured in her mind.
He clicked his heels together and bowed his head.
‘At your service, Madame.’

Marie Laval said...

Award winning THE LION'S EMBRACE, by Marie Laval (Gold Medal for Historical Romance in the Global Ebooks Awards 2014)

It was a narrow valley where the river curved into a bend, secluded by thick bushes and reeds. After a quick glance around to make sure she was alone, she stripped and walked naked into the water. It was so cold it took her breath away. She gritted her teeth, clutched her bar of soap and walked into the river until the water reached her hips. Getting rid of the grime and sweat of the past few days was worth the torture…

Holding her breath, she dipped into the water before standing and lathering soap over her body and her hair.

The light was changing. A transparent gold dust touched the hillside, the top of the trees. The sunrise streaked the sky with red, orange and pink hues, reflecting into the river. She was alone in the world, in a bubble hovering between sky and water.

Then she heard the growling. Stones tumbled down the hillside seconds before a male lion jumped onto the river bank, sleek and agile. It approached the river and started drinking. It hadn’t seen her. Yet.

Her heart thumping with terror, she ducked under the water very slowly, careful not to make any ripples on the surface. How long would she have to hold her breath? How long did it take a lion to quench its thirst after a night spent hunting? What if it saw her and came after her? Did lions, like cats, hate water? Her lungs started to burn, she felt close to choking. When she couldn’t hold on any longer, she popped her head above the water and took a long, long breath.

The lion had gone.
You are one lucky woman,' a voice called from the bank.

Still breathless, she spun round. Saintclair crouched near the water, a knife in one hand, a pistol in the other.

'How l-long have you be-been here?' she stuttered, her teeth chattering from cold and shock.

'Long enough.'

Had he watched her undress and get into the water? Actually, she’d rather not know.

She moved her legs and arms, numb and stiff with cold.

'Is it safe? Has the lion gone?' She looked towards the hillside.

'You’re safe. From the lion, that is.' He narrowed his eyes. 'I, on the other hand, might just want to throttle you for disregarding my orders.'

Elizabeth Delisi said...

MISTLETOE MEDIUM: Lottie Baldwin Mystery #3
Available for pre-order *now* for $.99
Release date: 11/04/15

“I’m not coming back, Jack. I told you that when I left.” Lottie twisted the phone cord around her index finger.

“Oh, c’mon, honey, you know you love me,” Jack wheedled. “You’re just mad. You can’t live without me and you know it.”

“Don’t kid yourself. I can live without you very well,” Lottie retorted.

There was a brief silence. Then he spoke again, all trace of supplication gone from his tone. “Nobody leaves me. Nobody. Have you got that? Now, get your ass home, pronto!”

“No, Jack,” Lottie repeated, trying to keep her voice from shaking. She had no intention of letting him know how much he frightened her. “I’m not coming back and you can’t make me.”

“Oh, yes I can,” he growled. “If you don’t come back on your own, I’m coming out there after you. I’ll drag you back by your hair! You hear me?”

“I’m hanging up now, Jack,” Lottie said. “Don’t call me again. We’re finished.” She dropped the receiver into its cradle, then leaned against the counter, trembling. Suddenly, a warm hand stole over her shoulder and a sense of safety and peace flowed through her.

“I couldn’t help but overhear,” Harlan said. “Is there anything I can do to help?”

She straightened but couldn’t face him. “No, there isn’t. Though he threatened to follow me out here, Jack’s all talk and no action. I doubt he’ll make good on his threats. But, thank you.”

Harlan grasped both her shoulders and turned her around. “If this Jack character gives you any trouble, I want you to call me and I’ll take care of him. Promise me you will?”

She looked up into his eyes—they radiated care and concern. The ice in the pit of her stomach suddenly melted. “All right, I promise.”

Alison Henderson said...

SMALL TOWN CHRISTMAS TALES: Ten short holiday romances

This was the last place she expected to spend Christmas. Callie Rayburn glanced around the puke-green cinder block cell in the basement of the Hawthorne Springs, Missouri police station. In jail for Christmas. It figured, given the downward spiral her life had taken during the past twenty-four hours.

A tear slid down the side of her nose. She dashed it away with the back of her hand and snuffled. She didn’t even have a tissue because that jerk Billy Freeman had taken her purse. What kind of town let a pubescent little snot like Billy Freeman wear a badge and carry a gun? It seemed like just last week she’d babysat him and his obnoxious younger brother to earn enough money to buy her dream dress for the senior prom.

Another tear followed the track of the first. If Billy Freeman was old enough to be a police officer, what did that make her? Ancient. Over the hill. Thirty years old with nothing to show for it. Two days ago she’d been living the high life in St. Louis with a job, a cute apartment she couldn’t afford, and a future. Today—zip, nada, bupkis. And now, to tie the whole thing up with a big fluffy bow, she’d been arrested by Billy Freeman for breaking and entering.


Disgusted, she pulled out of her slouch and straightened her spine. If Officer Billy thought she was going to take this lying down, he had a lot to learn. She might have temporarily sunk to the level of pathetic loser, but heaven help her, she would sleep in her car before she spent Christmas Eve in a jail cell.

Mary Marvella said...

A scant two hours after the girls had won the ball game, Lily sat across the booth from Jesse in the Burger Palace. “Can this be the woman who played such a mean game of softball only hours ago?” Jesse asked. “You look too pretty to be that hard-boiled jock. Where did you learn to play ball so well?”
“Brothers, I grew up with two jocks who played all sports. They were serious athletes.” Lily grinned. “They wouldn’t bother with a tag-along little sister, so I had to be good enough to make them want me on their teams when they played.”
Jesse’s body tingled when Lily laughed, as she did when anyone mentioned the afternoon game. He imagined a younger version of the woman across the table. Her blond ponytail would have been longer and tousled and her face smudged with dirt. Her brothers must have adored her.
“You learned well,” Jaycee said before he could.
“Your brothers must’ve spoiled you rotten. Did they wipe the mud from your face, get you out of trouble?” he teased. “Let you win all the time?”
“Not even close,” she answered. “They didn’t let me win. They taught me well.”
Lily blushed when Alex asked Jaycee in a pseudo whisper, “How come your dad didn’t tag Mom out? He could’ve.”