My name is Lucille Marie Harris, but everyone calls me Lucky.
My life was planned out by me, for me. I wanted nothing more than to finish school and have my dream job. I let nothing or no one stand in the way of that. That is until I met Zeppelin Rhoades. He had a way of changing me; turning my world upside down and making me feel reckless.
This is the tale of a summer romance that changes the course of two people’s lives forever.
You think you know how this story ends, but you have no idea. It isn’t always about where we end up. It’s about how we get there.
One person can change your life forever.
Zeppelin Rhoades changed mine.
Always Beautiful by M.K. Oien was an enjoyable and easy read. The development of Lucky, the lead female character, was written in a noteworthy manner. However, I wish I could have learned more about Zeppelin, the lead male character, and the development of him. Always Beautiful was slightly predictable, and a little cheesy at times but by the end of the book you will truly be suprised. M.K. Oien throws in a twist that no reader will expect.
#Nerd (The Hashtag Series #1)
New Adult College / Contemporary Romance
Release Date: November 3, 2014
Two people from completely different worlds are about to be thrown together…
In more ways than one.
She wants to keep her scholarship. He wants to stay on the team. An awkward alliance doesn’t even begin to cover Rimmel and Romeo’s relationship.
But that’s about to change.
It starts with a dare. An initiation. A challenge.
Quickly, it turns into more. But when you’re a victim of your status, there is no room for anything real. The rules are clear and simple.
Stick to your circle.
And never fall in love with anyone on the outside.
Cambria Hebert is a bestselling novelist of more than twenty books. She went to college for a bachelor’s degree, couldn’t pick a major, and ended up with a degree in cosmetology. So rest assured her characters will always have good hair. She currently resides in North Carolina with her children (human and furry) and her husband, who is a United States Marine.
Besides writing, Cambria loves a caramel latte, staying up late, sleeping in, and watching movies. She considers math human torture and has an irrational fear of chickens (yes, chickens). You can often find her running on the treadmill (she’d rather be eating a donut), painting her toenails (because she bites her fingernails), or walking her chorkie (the real boss of the house).
Cambria has written within the young adult and new adult genres, penning many paranormal and contemporary titles. Her favorite genre to read and write is romantic suspense. A few of her most recognized titles are: Text, Torch, Tryst, Masquerade, and Recalled.
Cambria Hebert owns and operates Cambria Hebert Books, LLC.
You can find out more about Cambria and her titles by visiting her website: http://www.cambriahebert.com.
Author: D.T. Dyllin
Series: M-Day #2
Genre: Dystopian Romance
Publisher: Tik Tok Press
Release Date: August 10, 2014
M-Day was the dawn of a brand new harsher world. A world where old lives could be left behind and secrets buried for good. At least that’s exactly what Tammie Miles had planned. But even with her new identity as Evo, she discovers that your past is never far. When a man from her old life tracks her down, will she risk everything to keep her secrets? Or will she finally learn that maybe even she can love the right man?
D.T. Dyllin is a Bestselling Romance Author who writes in both New Adult and Adult genres. She is a member of the RWA (Romance Writers of America) and also her local chapter, the MCRW (Music City Romance Writers).
D.T. was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Black & Gold for life, baby!) She now lives in Nashville, Tennessee with her husband and two spoiled GSDs.
Writer that influenced me the most…
Of course I’d first like to say that every thing I’ve ever read, good or bad has influenced me. I think that’s true with every author. Sooo… every writer I have ever read has influenced me in some manner of speaking. Figuring out who has influenced me the most was actually a tough one. Grrrr… When push comes to shove, or more aptly, when I have to choose for a guest post, I guess I’d have to say Anne Rice.
I was first exposed to Rice in elementary school. My mom had checked Interview with a Vampire out from our local library and something about the title intrigued me. I began secretly reading it when she wasn’t around. Granted, some things definitely went over my head, but I was in love. Finally a book that felt more real to me. I was one of those children who hated Disney and preferred things with a darker feel to them. I’d internally scoff at my friends who wanted to marry a prince charming when they grew up. That kind of stuff wasn’t real. Arial doesn’t become human and marry Eric at the end, she dies to save his life, or that’s the version I preferred. Yes, I was born a cynic, or at least that’s what my parents have always said. Now, Lestat, Louis… they could be real. The world of torment they lived in… totally believable. And oh Lestat… How I wished you were real and I could grow up and become your vampy female partner in crime. I wouldn’t whine like Louis, I swear. Lestat was my first long term book boyfriend crush. *swoon * Okay, I’m getting a bit off topic now. *fans self while thinking of Lestat *
Moving along… My style of writing isn’t anything like Anne Rice’s. If only. Lol But I do write darker romance. I don’t like to tiptoe around taboo subjects or what I feel would be realistic, which is definitely my personal opinion. Real life and real love aren’t pretty, and neither is a lot of the stuff I write about. That’s what I learned from Anne Rice… That it’s okay to be true to yourself and if you have a touch of darkness to you, then let it out and have fun while doing it.
Author: Kate Givans
Series: Tortured #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance/Romantic Drama
A contemporary romantic drama about loss, healing, and love’s ability to reach beyond scars and secrets, no matter how deep or hidden.
WARNING: This book is intended for 18+ readers ONLY. Potentially triggering content and concepts in books to follow.
More than a year after the death of his best friend, Josh is still tormented by the past. Everything changes when free-spirited Willow barges into his life. She challenges him, helps him feel something other than the overwhelming pain, sadness, and anger.
There’s just one problem.
Underneath that carefree spirit, Willow is elusive and secretive. Josh believes she may be fighting a few demons of her own, but he harder he tries to uncover the truth, the more she pushes him away.
Can Josh get her to open up before it’s too late? Or will he discover that some secrets are better left untold?
Quirky, clumsy, and always a little off-key, Kate Givans has always loved books and the words contained within. Now that she’s writing the stories, she’s filling them with broken characters, angst, and even a few of those happily-ever-afters that seem to evade us in real life.
When not writing, this gypsy-hearted wife and mother of five can be found guzzling coffee, day-dreaming, dancing for no reason at all, playing with the voices in her head, watching her favorite shows (Originals, Grey’s, OUAT, The Following), listening to music, and reminding herself to “breathe.”
Connect with Kate Givans:
I first met Willow out on Old Mill Road. Standing on the ledge of the arched concrete bridge, her arms spread wide, she looked like a bird about to take flight. I probably would have taken more time to admire the absolute freedom she embodied in that moment, the auburn curls whipping around her upturned face, the way the moonlight made her porcelain skin shimmer…but it looked like she was about to jump.
I remember my hesitation, how desperately I wanted to turn back the way I’d come and pretend I’d never seen her. I know it makes me sound like an insensitive prick, but I wasn’t exactly thrilled at having the life or death of some crazy chick thrown in my lap. Not that I didn’t understand, at least on some level, what might be going through her head. Hell, I knew, better than most, what it meant to feel like life would never get better.
It’d only been six weeks since my release from Shady Oak’s mental facility. I wasn’t the person to talk her down; I didn’t know the first thing about helping someone find the light at the end of the tunnel. Hell, I still had days that I’d much rather jump right along with her than try and brave another day.
Thankfully, that particular day hadn’t been one of them.
I stood there a few moments longer, considering my options. I could turn around and go back the way I came, but I wasn’t exactly up for that. I could go past her and risk spooking her, but the last thing I needed was the aftermath of watching her plummet to her death – calling the police, filing a report, explaining what had happened. It wouldn’t hurt to at least try and talk her off the ledge, right?
Having made my decision, I edged cautiously along the gravel path, taking slow and calculated steps towards bird-girl. Stopping just feet away from her, I weighed the risk of grabbing ahold of the oversized sweater jacket she was wearing. My luck, the damn thing would come clean off and she’d end up in the water anyway, so I decided against it.
I was still trying to decide how to go about helping her when she spoke, voice confident as she kept her face upturned towards the night sky. “I’m not going to jump.”
I cleared my throat and hoped to God the irritation didn’t seep through. “No offense, miss, but that’s not what it looks like from here.”
Her head tilted slightly, as if she were trying to shrug, but the movement came up short. I waited for some other response, but the uncomfortable silence stretched on, giving me the impression that my presence was both unwanted and unnecessary.
“Well, you…uh, have a nice night,” I finally said, taking a couple backward steps towards town.
“You could join me.” Her words, prying and inquisitive, stopped me dead in my tracks.
“Yeeaaah….Thanks, but I prefer to keep my feet on the ground.”
She chuckled. The light, carefree sound intrigued and, for some unknown reason, annoyed me all at once. Maybe because I’d never laughed like that. Hell, I didn’t know anyone that had. It left me questioning what the hell she was doing up there in the first place.
Crazy. Definitely crazy.
Determined to get as far away from her as possible, I started backing away. I didn’t make it but a few steps when she glanced over her shoulder at me. The wide-eyed conviction in her sparkling, crystal blue eyes ensnared me, rooted me to the ground beneath my feet.
“How will you ever learn to fly if you don’t take time to spread your wings?” she asked.
And just like that, the pull I’d felt just seconds before shook free, floating away with the cold, bitter wind. I’d taken enough rides on the crazy train to last a lifetime. “Well, anyway. It was, uh, nice meeting you.”
Shinedown, Save Me: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T8dyxGiBx3g
The Fray, You Found Me: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jFg_8u87zT0
Get Scared, Built for Blame: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k82La8Lkra8
3 Doors Down, So Far Down: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DDK5qGlLT8s
Bush, Greedy Fly: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6FExyoAh6Ng
Nickleback, Savin’ Me: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_JQiEs32SqQ
Stone Sour, Bother: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q-pXD0FXLQ8
Papa Roach, Scars: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eHbNU9WuVgw
The Fray, How to Save a Life: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cjVQ36NhbMk
Coldplay, Fix You: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hbJuEFs7-kU
Imagine Dragons, Demons: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mWRsgZuwf_8&feature=kp
Jasmine Thomspon, Everybody Hurts: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KWGL3SbhLDQ
Seether, Fade Away: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aNgQr_FdZvE
Goo Goo Dolls, Before It’s Too Late: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EtSAIhP1-5s
Sick Puppies, All the Same: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cs72v-2zjsg
John Legend, All of Me: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=450p7goxZqg
Hoobastank, Lucky: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f0M1lhBLbeU
Adelitas Way, Alive: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nRs-1QVo4_M&feature=kp
Evanescence, Bring Me to Life: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3YxaaGgTQYM
Little Green Cars, The John Wayne: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VJEVkuNsEi0
Breaking Benjamin, Diary of Jane: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DWaB4PXCwFU
Fireflight, Desperate: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eQctVDvIFWg
Lynard Skynard, Free Bird: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=np0solnL1XY
Goo Goo Dolls, Here is Gone: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tNtN83-vQmw
3 Doors Down, Let Me Go: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=thc1MtNagC8
The Fray, Never Say Never: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Aihu16RyYp8Art of Dying, Die Trying: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GFlVi9MHpDc
Author Q &A:
What made you decide you wanted to be a writer?
Deep down, I think I’ve always known. I started reading at four. When I was seven, I wrote my first book. It was a short, adorable little thing that I wrote for my mom. Along the way, I lost sight of that – maybe it was the responsibility of being a mom, or the idea that I was supposed to grow up and do the responsibility thing. Whatever the case, it kind of got buried in day to day life. Then, after my mother passed away, I found my book in her things. It all came flooding back, but again, I tossed it aside, figuring it was just too late. It wasn’t until I met my best friend that all that changed. I learned about Indie publishing and fell in love instantly.
How would you describe your books, in a nutshell?
Dark, twisty, angsty, with a lot of heart and a peppering of romance. That may change as I go along, but it definitely fits most of my current writing.
What has been your biggest struggle when it comes to writing and publishing?
I have to say my biggest struggle has been believing in myself enough to actually do it. At first, I wasn’t really sure I could tell a story that anyone else would enjoy. Plus, I’ve always been oversensitive, so the fear of rejection kind of kept me frozen for a few years. Thankfully, I’ve had some pretty amazing people in my life that believed in me until I could do it for myself.
Where do you draw your writing inspiration from?
Honestly, there’s not any one place that I find inspiration. It’s more of a conglomeration of personal experience, music, cinema, pop culture, books, and random ideas that seem to come out of nowhere. Each piece of the puzzle seems to play its own little role in the writing process for me.
Do you share any traits, characteristics, or traits with any of your characters?
Admittedly, I do. While each and every one of them is different, I find that I share certain struggles, personality traits, or nuances with most of my characters. And in so many ways, they teach me lessons about myself. I learn from them – the things they endure and somehow manage to overcome, the truths that they come to see and believe about the world around them or themselves. It’s a very interesting process, to say the least.
Do you have any favorite authors?
I do! But I have entirely too many to mention! Not just because I don’t want to exclude anyone, but also because I don’t read just one particular genre of book. I have my dark and twisty, contemporary, my guilty erotica reads, romance, zombies…needless to say, I’m extremely eclectic in my reading tastes.
From the moment they meet, their connection is perfect in every way but one.
It’s New Year’s Eve, 2007, and Justine James is fronting her dead-end band for a less-than-adoring crowd. But there’s one person there who sees what she could be—one person who changes everything for her.
Dillon Pierce clawed his way up from the LA streets with no one to count on but his best friend, Ash. Their years of struggle finally pay off when their band, Outlaw Rovers, gets signed and their single takes off. With Ash as the magnetic lead singer and Dillon as the band’s musical soul, they’re destined for greatness, provided Dillon can keep Ash from self-destructing first.
Dillon might not be fronting Outlaw Rovers, but he’s always been the only one Justine sees. She’s followed his career from afar and when he shows up at her crummy New Year’s Eve gig, nothing will stop her from meeting him. They forge an intense connection, rapidly moving from friends to musical soul mates. Justine wants much more, but she’s not willing to climb over groupies and industry bottom-feeders to make it happen. Dillon becomes a fixture in her life, but she has to figure out how to keep him out of her heart.
Outlaw Rovers begins to implode as Justine’s star is on the rise. The years that follow bring equal parts fame and ruin. For Justine, a new love supplants her old heartbreak, and Dillon has to reboot his life after losing nearly everything that matters. Despite the odds, Dillon and Justine remain devoted friends and musical collaborators. After all the missed chances, wrong turns and painful detours, can they finally find the happiness together that seemed destined from the start?
I thoroughly enjoyed reading Always by Amanda Weaver. The story between Dillon and Justine is a love story set at the wrong time in both of their lives. I have never read a story set in the music world, but Amanda Weaver does a great job creating the world in Always. The detailed portrayal of music in Always makes me wish I could listen to the music for myself. Amanda Weaver is a talented writer and the detail she provides throughout her writing is enthralling. Always is a book that will engross you, but I do wish the author had spent a little more time on the ending.
My name’s Sebastian Black, and I want to buy you. I could have any woman I want, but I choose you.
NO RELATIONSHIP, JUST SEX.
Here’s my offer…
I’ll put your name in my LITTLE BLACK BOOK, and when I want you, I’ll call you. When I call, you’re going to come, in more ways than one. It will be mutually pleasurable for both of us.
There are only two rules:
DON’T EVER DENY ME.
DON’T FALL IN LOVE.
If you do either, I’ll remove you from my book and payment stops.
Do we have an understanding?
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Stained with heartache and cursed with vengeance, a stone well lies on a nineteenth-century estate, waiting for the Stockton line to wish again.
When seventeen-year-old Lila Wayde’s father loses his high-paying job in Las Vegas, the family relocates to a Pennsylvania estate bequeathed by an estranged aunt. Lila begins a new life there, one not corrupted by wealth and fake friends. She soon meets Ben, the groundskeeper’s gritty grandson, and experiences the kind of happiness her life’s been missing. But as she settles into the ancient house, she learns information about her ancestors and the old stone well that may make her wish she’d never come.
Ben Shadows has lost enough in life. So when Stockton Estate’s owner, Janine, wills the land to her great-niece Lila, Ben fears for the fate of the property. He decides to find out Lila’s intentions as the new owner, but his grandfather wants him to protect her from Stockton Estate’s alleged curse. As Ben helps Lila dig through the estate’s history, they grow closer than he ever intended. Now, along with concerns about the property and the reality of the curse, he struggles with feelings he can’t ignore.
Will the secrets of Stockton Estate bring them together or will knowing the truth rip them apart?
Jennifer Miller’s The Line That Binds is a story of love and a curse. Miller has created a classic love story with a twist like no other. From the creativity put into her characters to the detail involved in making this story come to life, The Line That Binds is a riveting story. You will not want to put this book down until you find out the truth about LJ and the Stockton Estate. Jennifer Miller is an excellent writer; the Line That Binds is a proof of her imagination and skills as an author.
In life and business, Trey Miller has always been the good guy. Nothing wrong with that, since it’s gotten him everywhere he has needed to be. His startup company is a success and growing so much that he is gaining the attention of larger corporations.
By all accounts, Trey has it all, but the one place he fails is love.
He thought he might have had something with Emogen Kane, but she was taken before he even had a chance. Now, he hides behind work, unwilling to take any risks in the love department.
When Trey finds himself vying for a huge account against Faith Young, he knows he’s going to have to play it tough to win. Faith is smart, attractive and rumor has it, she lands every account she goes after.
When Faith is thrown into his path at every turn, Trey starts to feel that it is more than a coincidence. Knowing that Faith has a boyfriend douses the flame that he was starting to feel, until he realizes that the guy might not at all be what he seems.
Trey let go once, but he’s determined to win it all this time. Does he have it in him to roll up his sleeves and get dirty? And if he does, will he finally end up with the girl?
My Review ****
Mine to Steal was a fun read for me. I wasn’t sure how I felt about the main character Faith for the longest time. It wasn’t because she was awful, it’s because the author wrote her so complicated, you weren’t really ever sure what she was thinking.I think the characters were developed well, which is important for me when I’m reading. I felt like I knew them and their personalities. There was some humor which I dug, the brother Jett was a trip. All and all I enjoyed the story line and the writing.
Find the Author
T.K. Rapp is a Texas girl born and raised. She earned a B.A. in Journalism from Texas A&M and it was there that she met the love of her life. He had a contract with the U.S. Navy that would take them across both coasts, and ultimately land them back home in Texas.
Upon finally settling in Texas, T.K. worked as a graphic designer and photographer for the family business that her mom started years earlier. She was able to infuse her creativity and passion, into something she enjoyed, but something was still missing. There was a voice in the back of her head that told her to write, so write, she did. And, somewhere on an external hard drive, are several stories she started and never finished.
Now at home, raising her two daughters, T.K. has more time to do the things she loves, which includes photography and writing. When she’s not doing one of those, she can be found with her family, which keeps her busy. She enjoys watching her kids in their various sporting activities (i.e. doing the soccer mom thing), having Sunday breakfast at her parent’s house, singing out loud and out of key or dancing like a fool. She loves raunchy humor, gossip blogs and a good book.
We are always chopping up zombies and blowing their heads into frothy pulp, but do we have to? Can they be tamed or at least subdued? There is a new TV show on BBC America called “In the Flesh” that features rehabilitated zombies that have been reintegrated with society. I watched the pilot the other day. Pretty silly show actually. Not for me. But still, I wonder if they always have to be slaughtered to stop them and keep the masses safe…. Consider this newspaper article I found:
Zombies ride carousel, seem happier for it, town relaxes slightly
GORLAND, IA (Rooters) –As the world is paralyzed in the crushing terror of the zombie apocalypse, one small town is sleeping a bit easier tonight due to one innocent amusement ride: a carousel.
In what towns’ people described as a wonderful twist of chance, some zombies have stopped attacking people, choosing instead to sit on brightly colored carousel horses or other animals and enjoy the music and fun.
Edgar Mullins, manager of the antique carousel, says that he came onto his shift one afternoon to find a zombie stuck to one of the horses. He was scared at first, as it growled and clawed at him. Since it didn’t advance on him, Edgar noticed its decayed leg was caught in one of the hooves. Fascinated, by the horrifying monster, Edgar observed it for some time before finally deciding it would be hilarious to crank up the Wurlitzer and make the trapped zombie go for a ride.
The band organ blared on and the ride rotated around and around while Edgar sat back and enjoyed a fresh batch of popcorn. Something shocking happened. The zombie crawled up on the saddle and stopped gnashing and slashing.
It simply stared at the kaleidoscope of lights.
As soon as the music stopped and the carousel stopped spinning, the zombie became agitated. Edgar pushed the button and the started the machine up and the zombie once again relaxed and became docile.
Well Edgar was amazed at what he had discovered. “I dropped my bag of popcorn and everything. If you have ever had carousel popcorn, you know you don’t waste that stuff, but I did.”
The word spread and soon friends and strangers alike were dragging in zombies on leashes and harnesses to the cherished amusement ride. The horses, the dogs, even the dragons and mermaids all quickly filled with not awe-struck children, but rotting, stinking zombies.
Today, there is not one empty animal and most have two or three zombies piled on.
It’s a win-win situation: Happy zombies and fewer people get munched on. Apparently, the zombies are content riding the beloved carousel. “Somehow either the carousel itself or the happy memories the carousel invokes are enough to stop the swarming hordes!”
Billy, age 8, even tells this reporter that he tied a red balloon to one of the zombie’s ankles and “it didn’t do anything.”
Reactions are mixed. While it’s true there are fewer zombies on the streets eating people, the 100 year old carousel is covered in gore and guts. The once brightly painted animals are coated in dark red and black body paint. Body parts fall off regularly and are left to rot on the platform. David Arsenfellow, mayor, says the carousel is protected by law and that this “foolishness has destroyed a landmark”. Still, he can’t deny there are much fewer deaths.
Edgar now has several people that take turns rewinding the music reels and pressing the button. Standing in the center of the carousel filled with zombies is like being in the center of “shit storm” says Ann Greeley. She adds, “I hate to be the person in the center operating the carousel when the power goes out.”
* * * * *
The stench of rotting flesh is in the air! Welcome to the Summer of Zombie Blog Tour 2014, with 33 of the best zombie authors spreading the disease in the month of June.
Stop by the event page on Facebook so you don’t miss an interview, guest post or teaser… and pick up some great swag as well! Giveaways galore from most of the authors as well as interaction with them! #SummerZombie
JOIN THE EVENT
AND so you don’t miss any of the posts in June, here’s the complete list, updated daily:
Title: Jungle Fever Duology
Author: L V Lewis
Release Date: May 27, 2014
A boxed set of The Ghetto Girl Romance Duology, which includes the books Fifty Shades of Jungle Fever and Exit Strategy:
Fifty Shades of Jungle FeverKeisha Beale, a street-wise Chicago south-sider two years out of DePaul University, is a quarter million dollars in start-up capital away from realizing her dream of owning a recording studio/record store. She takes the place of her more business-savvy partner in a meeting with Tristan White himself, the venture capitalist they’ve targeted to fund their business.
A bi-racial–African American and Brazilian–woman with atroubled past, Keisha has been so focused on her business pursuits that her love life has been non-existent. Tristan White is the devastatingly hand some, 32-year old CEO of White Enterprises, the firm he built using only the inheritance his mother left him to prove to his father he had the mettle to do it alone. He comes from a long line of wealth, and lives the life of a “one-percenter” on Chicago’s Gold Coast. Tristan is accustomed to controlling every aspect of his life given his birth into a world of white privilege.
50 Shades To The 2nd Power …
When Keisha and Tristan’s worlds collide, sparks fly, and a fever is ignited in them both that they have never experienced before. It turns out they each have secrets, but together, in the unorthodox arrangement Tristan proposes, they discover passions they never knew they had.
… Meets Keisha From The Block!
The Ghetto Girl title is, in all truthfulness, a misnomer.
Keisha Beale is a highly-educated young woman who just happens to have been born on the other side of the socio-economic tracks. She embraces all of who she is, and navigates almost effortlessly in both worlds.
Erotic, amusing, and in places hilarious, the Ghetto Girl Romance Quadrilogy is a parody with a new take on a Fifty Shades type story that will take you even further into the BDSM world, and promises to make the vanilla original Fifty Shades more colorful.
Ex•it Strat•e•gy (noun) 1. A preplanned means of extricating oneself from a situation that is likely to become difficult or unpleasant. 2. The method by which a venture capitalist or business owner intends to get out of an investment that he or she has made in the past.
Will Keisha and Tristan exercise their elaborate EXIT STRATEGY and end their unorthodox arrangement? Assailed by demons she thought she had conquered, Keisha Beale has uttered the words to end her tumultuous relationship with Tristan White. Separated, they grapple for a time with their personal demons. However, when their lives apart become unbearable, a credible threat brings them back together prematurely. As they seek to discover who is responsible for the threats, several seemingly unrelated incidents throw them into a tailspin. Will Keisha’s youthful indiscretions or Tristan’s un-reconciled feelings for a former sub derail their tenuous arrangement? In the meantime, trouble in Nathan and Jada’s paradise send dramatic ripples that hint of future difficulties in the idyllic pairing.
Tristan uses his vast wealth and connections to correct a gross miscarriage of justice, while Keisha makes herself utterly vulnerable to Tristan and fears he has chosen to exercise his own exit strategy.
Will this be the end of the indecent arrangement that became a fairy tale? Or will Keisha and Tristan reveal the trauma from their pasts so they may heal and completely embrace their relationship? Sensual, suspenseful, and still infused with the riotous levity of Triple-G and Fairy Hoochie Mama, the Ghetto Girl Romance Quadrilogy departs from full parody with a distinctive take on love, loyalty, sacrifice, redemption, and acceptance.
I wake up alone in Tristan’s bed, fully sated by the telltale ache between my legs but otherwise feeling like Anakin Skywalker. I’ve been lured to the dark side, yet again. The glossy sheen of lust has worn off, and I might just be in a worse situation than I was before. Tristan targeted me with all that romantic charm and cast out his line; I took the bait, and he reeled me in just as sweet as you please.
What kind of idiot am I to allow him to woo me into a romantic stupor like that? He showed me an aberration, a glimpse of something I’ll likely never have with him, and I fell like a flimsy house of cards. Yes, I was suckered but good.
“Oh God. What have I done?” I mutter.
My Fairy Hoochie languishes on her mini chaise with a chicken-shit grin on her face. You got us laid, is what!
She purses her little lips. Like you didn’t want him yourself.
Mini-me has a point. I was practically having Tristan DTs just before he called, I was so damned horny. It didn’t take much pushing on his part to get me back into his bed. I can’t say the same for his role-play room, though. I was afraid to go back in there, because I didn’t want him to get carried away and utter another Javier Beale-ism in the heat of the moment that would throw me into another convulsive anxiety attack.
Tristan took me through some rather benign bondage routines and took the punishment deck completely off the table, so I felt fairly comfortable after the first scene. Thank goodness Daddy dearest never tied me up, blindfolded me, or locked me up. Otherwise Tristan—and me by default—would be SOL.
My Triple-G is still sleeping like the dead and snoring like she hasn’t slept well in weeks. Poor little fairy. At least she looks happy.
I shake off my ambivalence and smile to myself when I see the expression of utter bliss on her tiny face. Last night was perfection. It was a multiple-O night, as most nights are with Tristan White. I am always surprised how just the right amount of pressure executed in such a precise manner can be so lust-inducing. He massaged and patted my derriere until he graduated to a light spanking, and the sight of my ass cheeks all bathed a dusky rose made him so hard I could still feel the sensation of the tip of his manhood hitting my cervix.
I hug myself at the intensity of the recollection and then drag my ass out of bed. I tug on the shirt I ripped off Tristan the night before and slide on a clean pair of his boxer briefs. They’re too big, but the elastic waist keeps them from sliding down. I also borrow his shortest robe to cover up because I don’t want to traipse around Mrs. Naven in anything less than proper attire.
Barefoot, I go in search of him. I follow the sound of voices. As I’m about to enter the sitting room, I hear him say, “I took your advice.”
I stop just at the edge of the open door and listen. I’m not sure why I do. Mama’s always told me “most eavesdroppers wind up wishing they hadn’t.” Her way of saying they invariably hear exactly what they shouldn’t, and I believe I’m about to be the rule and not the exception.
“And did you give yourself a little bit of hope in the process?”
“Just so you know, I’ve gone all in with Jada, man. She is the whole package. Everything I’ve always wanted in a woman. Six months to a year, I’m putting a ring on it.”
Nate laughs. “I didn’t stutter when I said that, so you didn’t have to say that like it was a question.”
“Sorry. I guess I just don’t see Ms. Jameson as one who’d want to go for the domestic scene so soon.”
“Believe me, Jada wants a family of her own. She’s determined to live the dream her folks shattered while she was growing up. She has a strong maternal instinct. She’s just a hard-ass with you because you two are so damn much alike.”
I almost laugh out loud on that one. I’d never thought about it, but Nate’s right. Jada is like a female Tristan sometimes.
“I wouldn’t go so far as to say that. She’s got some strong Domme tendencies, that’s for sure. I like her because she’s such a good friend to Keisha.”
“Speaking of Keisha, you can’t tell me you don’t have stronger feelings for her than you’re letting on. You were a mess until she came back. Admit it.”
“My condition was a result of overwork.”
Denial much, Tristan?
“Keep telling yourself that.”
“And I’ve been having these fucked-up dreams about Mom.”
“Oh, yeah? Want to… talk about them?” Even Nathan sounds tentative.
“Like I really want you to psychoanalyze me? No thanks.” Tristan sighs. “Dr. Trammell came by yesterday after… you know.”
“Did you tell him about your dreams and talk to him about Keisha?”
“Believe me, I had quite enough shit to talk to him about, and stop harping about Keisha, okay?”
“She’s the first woman since Aimee to affect you like this. Your heart didn’t stop working, nor did your chance for a normal life die in that accident, but you’re acting like it did.”
Who the fuck is Aimee? This is the first I’ve heard of her. Is she a former submissive? Tristan’s last and only real girlfriend? And is she still alive, or did she die in that accident they’re talking about? Oh my God. If she did, no wonder he can’t seem to open himself up to anyone.
“It might as well have. Aimee was in pain, and I realized it too late. She loved me.”
“In the most destructive way possible, and you’re still letting what happened to her manipulate you into giving up. She hurt herself. That was not your fault.”
Oh, so she was just hurt in the accident. Where she is now, and why does Tristan feel like the accident was his fault?
“Isn’t that the only way people ever truly love—selfishly and destructively?”
“If you think that, you truly are a lost cause.”
I second that emotion, Nathan. I mean, geez, why does love have to be such a damned disaster? If Tristan is really incapable of loving anyone, I’m back to square minus one, or some shit. I know I probably should’ve exercised a bit of self-preservation and put the brakes on getting back into this arrangement with him, but I’m already in too deep.
He’s been sending me so many mixed signals, though, it’s a miracle I haven’t become romantically dyslexic. I want to keep hope alive as much as the next girl, but seriously! Tristan’s middle name should be delusion because he operates in that state more than he does in any other. And mine is rationalization because I’ve decided that maybe we can still ride this out and let our relationship run its course. Maybe it will be okay.
L. V. Lewis is a new author who decided that stories like Fifty Shades of Grey needed a little more diversity and comedy in them. Lewis is married and lives in South Georgia. Lewis loves romances that involve interracial couples because L. V. envisions a world one day where it won’t matter to anyone else who you love (because despite the civil rights movement, and a biracial US President, we aren’t there yet).
LV and spouse are political junkies. One leans right, the other left. Thankfully, this has never caused any issues in their relationship. If Lewis told you which of them was the Democrat and which was the Republican, you just might be able to figure out which is Dominant and which is submissive.