I’ve been bad…

I’ve had news and been neglecting to post to the blog here — oops! I hope y’all will forgive me, or at least not torture me too much. Just a little to the right, now, there. 😉

The Shadow Unveiled, direct sequel to The Twilight Deception starring Arielle and Jackson, is slated for release by Liquid Silver Books. And I now have the cover to share! 😀

Isn’t it purty? The artist is Christine Griffin, who did both the Cobblestone and Liquid Silver covers for the first book. I am in awe of her talent.

I bet y’all want a blurb and excerpt to go with this now, hmm? Well, then!

Blurb: Arielle Thompson never expected to fall in love, but now that Jackson is back in her life, she’s got to make room for him in more ways than one. Never mind sorting out living spaces, she has to convince her boss at Shadowguard, the FBI’s top-secret paranormal division, that an alien vampire would be a benefit to their team. But they get their chance to prove Jackson’s worth when reports of blood magic and demonic sacrifices deep in Louisiana surface. Investigation reveals the situation is far more serious than they previously suspected, and Jackson and Arielle must depend on each other once again for survival.

Excerpt:

Rest didn’t happen. I can’t sleep worth shit the night before a mission. I’m too wound up and anxious. Thank God for caffeine pills and Red Bull.

Jackson, on the other hand, didn’t share my insomniac streak. He passed out on the couch around midnight, leaving me alone with my apprehension. Instead of dwelling on what ifs, I busied myself packing the necessities: clothes, mp3 player and earbuds, a couple of books for the flight, and miscellaneous toiletries.

Arms wrapped around me and pulled me close, against a body muscled but not so much that it was uncomfortable. I gasped and jumped at first, starting to shift into a fighting stance, until I realized it was J. I forced myself to relax, letting my head fall back against him. “I thought you were asleep,” I grumbled.

“I was.” J nuzzled my hair and rubbed my belly. “But I could feel your unease. I do not require sleep as humans do, and you need me.”

I bristled. “I don’t need anyone. I’ve been independent and supporting myself for years.”

Jackson chuckled, the vibration passing through me. “I would not think otherwise. But there is no weakness in admitting desire for human comfort, my dear.”

I turned around in his arms, slowly, until I faced him and looked up into his bronzed, aquiline face. “But you’re not human.”

To his credit, he didn’t even wince. “No. I’m not. But that does not mean I have no desires of my own. We are not that different, you and I.”

Too damn true. Sighing, I leaned my head against his chest. “I’m scared, J. I’ve never been in a situation like this before. I’ve never lived with anyone but myself. I’ve had to take care of myself my entire life, and letting anyone else in–is hard.”

“I know,” he murmured into my hair, his breath hot and soothing. “It is difficult for me, as well. It has been many years since I have let anyone this close.”

“What happened?” I glanced up at him, curious.

His jaw tightened, and his eyes turned both hard and sad all at once. “She died.”

“Oh. I’m–sorry.” What else was there to say?

“It is no matter now.” J drew in a deep breath. “It was a very long time ago.”

I thought about asking how long, then decided against. It would be tacky.

“I am glad to be here with you. Thank you for all you have done for me.” Before I could respond, he leaned down to kiss me. His lips caressed mine, softly, and his hands stroked up and down my back.

I moaned, heat surging through my body, desire raging. Growling, I clenched my hands in his shirt, nails digging in. It had been too long, and I wanted him. We hadn’t had a chance to be together since he’d returned–not like that, anyway.

Jackson’s tongue flicked against my lip, and I all but melted. Gooseflesh rose over my body, and I shuddered in his arms, pleasure overtaking me. “Maybe we should move to the bedroom,” I breathed.

“Maybe we should,” he said wickedly and lifted me into his arms, holding me tight.

New cover! and new site!

Firstly, I want to thank y’all for the comments made on Monday’s excerpt. I had a blast writing that book, and I’m glad that other people seem to like it as much. 😀

Secondly, I have a new website design! If you’re reading this by RSS, please click over and check it out, because it’s gorgeous. I owe major thanks to Ilona Andrews for the header design, and to Rowan Larke for all the work she did getting the theme worked out and colored. Kudos and everlasting gratitude, ladies!

And best for last… *drumroll* I have a new cover!

Isn’t it gorgeous? Christine Griffin did an amazing job! If you’d like to see the full size version, click here. I know what’s going to be my desktop wallpaper for awhile! 😉

Excerpt Monday

I’m participating in Excerpt Monday, organized by the lovely Bria Quinlan and Mel Berthier from Romance Divas. The following is an excerpt from my forthcoming paranormal romance novella from Liquid Silver Books, The Twilight Deception:

~*~

Jackson stared at me like I’d grown a second head, then his expression softened. “She’s beyond help, Arielle. I tried to help when I first found her, but she attacked me and would not relent. I touched her mind. There is nothing there but a frenzied beast.”

“So there’s nothing that can be done?”

He shook his head. “No. The first twenty-four hours are critical. I found her too late.”

“I don’t believe it,” I said flatly. “You’re just trying to make excuses cause you didn’t have the balls to help her.”

Jackson snarled. Faster than I could track, much less counter in my state, he grabbed my shoulders and swung me off the toilet. My back slammed against the wall, and he held me a good foot off the ground. Pissed off, I aimed my knee at his balls, but he moved to the side and slid his hip between my legs, preventing me from striking out again–and exciting me more than a little bit. Bastard.

“I am only going to say this once,” he hissed, eyes wild with fury. “If there had been any hope of it, I would have saved her. Do you think I like what he’s done? He has no respect for human lives, nor those of his own kind! She was beyond hope when I found her, yet I tried anyway. There is nothing that can be done to save her.”

I struggled against him, trying to free myself. Not like it did any good. I’m not weak by any stretch of the imagination, but I’m not a vampire, either, and he had a good advantage on me. “How do I know you’re telling me the truth?”

His mouth distorted into a grimace. “Are you questioning my honor?”

Oops. “Look, I don’t know what it’s like on your world, but around here, honor’s just a dead horse that a few old geezers keep beating.”

Jackson tilted his head, blinking with obvious confusion. “Your people … have no concept of honor?”

“Oh, we have the concept. We just decided it was antiquated and tossed it out the window. We replaced it with Egocentricity 9.0.” I hesitated a moment. “Can you put me down now? This isn’t exactly the most comfortable position, you know.”

His anger given way to shock, Jackson lowered me to the ground. “I hear your words, but I … I cannot believe…”

“You really haven’t been around here long, have you?”

Jackson shook his head mutely, looking totally bewildered. Great. So not only is he an alien vampire, he’s a Klingon vampire with a bad case of culture shock. How lovely.

I clapped him on the shoulder, deciding to ignore the whole pushing-me-up-against-the-wall deal. At least for now. Like it or not, we had to work together if we wanted any chance at finding the dude. Afterwards, on the other hand … “Don’t worry. You’ll get used to it. Now. About that girl and tracking Eliro…”

~*~

If you’re interested in reading more snippets of great work, check out these other Excerpt Monday blogs:

Aislinn Kerry

Elise Logan

Crista McHugh

Kirsten Saell

RF Long

and check out the main Excerpt Monday page for a full list of participants! Enjoy! 😀