Friday, February 28, 2014

Secret Cravings Paranormal Romance Blog Hop!!


Welcome to the Secret Cravings Publishing Paranormal Romance Blog Hop! As much of the world prepares for their Mardi Gras celebrations, we are celebrating paranormal romance with all of you! As you parade through the list of authors, be sure to enter their many giveaways.

My first Paranormal Romance novel was published in December of 2013 with Secret Cravings Publishing. It is a first person account of lies, betrayal and the destiny of one witch named Selena Barnes. A lot of the promo has been focused on her and her slime ball fiance, Shawn Richardson. 

However, I have another character I'd love to introduce you to. She appears late in the book and she's quite mysterious. Where did she come from? Who is she? Why is she there?
Well, she's very old, timeless, in fact. There are no known photographs of her and even I have never seen her. This is the best likeness I could find that would measure up to Selena's description of her. Meet Amaris, an enforcer for the council of elders.

Here is a little snippet from Wicked By Nature:

Weapon in hand, I turned around slowly and speechless, I watched as the most gorgeous woman I’d ever seen materialized right before my eyes.
Though she was beautiful with her waist-length, raven colored hair and eyes the color of spring violets, my mind screamed ‘Demon!’ She had to be another friend of Roberta’s. No one could be as goddess-like as she was without it being a trap. Maybe she was one of those sirens, women who lured men to their deaths below the murky surface of the sea. But how on earth would a mermaid get in here? Oh yeah, bathroom, duh.
“What do you want?”
She spread her arms wide and the bracelets she wore were linked to a necklace made of the most beautiful alexandrite I had ever seen, shimmered and shined as she moved, casting prisms of color all around the room. And I noticed she didn’t have fins or gills. I surmised she wasn’t a mermaid and my mind ran through the various ‘pretty’ demons I’d read about, but she didn’t match any of the pictures I could recall.
“It’s time, Selena.”
“Time for what and who are you?”
“My name is Amaris. I’m an enforcer for the council of elders.”
Right. This beautiful woman with a voice that flowed over my body like satin was an enforcer? Please! More like lust demon. Every word she said tickled and touched me, pleasuring me from across the room. I hadn’t even remembered I was naked until my nipples stood out in tiny painful peaks.
You’re an enforcer? All goddess-like and standing in my hotel bathroom? This place must be a beacon for paranormal activity” I said as I looked around the room, ready to whip some ass in case anyone else decided to join our impromptu party.
“What do you mean, Selena? I was sent to get you and here I am. There’s no need for modesty” she said matter-of-factly as I grabbed a pink, fluffy robe and slid it on, my sarcasm lost on her.
“Well, I’d feel more comfortable if at least one of us wasn’t naked, Amaris. No offense.” The woman would be a perfect muse for any artist. She was flawless!

“You need to say your goodbyes. It’s time to go.”
**End of Excerpt**
The following is the small amount of information I was able to obtain from Selena Barnes about Amaris:
"Amaris is much more than an enforcer for the council of elders. In fact, she is older than anyone remaining on the council. Her beauty is ethereal and that beauty is what most likely led to her demise in the 1700's. Before fleeing to Salem Ridge, Indiana, Amaris was one of the most well known witches to ever live in New Orleans. Before then? No one knows and she isn't exactly forthcoming with details of her life back then. 
In New Orleans, Amaris was the witch everyone turned to in time of need. When medicines failed, Amaris succeeded with her many herbs and words spoken to the Universe on behalf of distraught parents who wished to save their ill children. With diseases running rampant, taking the good and bad people of her beloved land, Amaris did everything she could to spare and save as many people as possible. Men came to her for love spells, women wanted to be as beautiful as she was and she did her best to help them all.
One particular night, a handsome stranger came calling. He didn't appear to be ill, but she knew he was at her door for more than medicine. Randall Boudreaux wanted a cure. A cure for the curse that had befallen his family for generations. He cried, begged and pleaded with Amaris to help him. Help him by destroying the curse that had made him a mass murderer. The kind who kill not for pleasure, but for blood.
Amaris knew she could not cure him by normal means. She knew there was no potion, no medicine, no spell of any kind that could lift the plague he suffered. But after weeks of Randall visits and midnight rendezvous, their love grew and Amaris knew she must try. The man was not some rabid animal. He suffered with guilt over every terrible thing he had ever done. 
Months of trying to cure and console him left Amaris desperate for an answer. They were passionately in love. If anyone were to find out that he was a monster who'd been finishing off the incurable townspeople... surely the remaining members of the community would have him killed. Amaris found herself willing to do anything and everything it took to save him. 
She began turning away those who came to her for assistance. She locked herself away, spending every spare moment mixing potions, casting spells and pleading with the Goddess to save her true love. But nothing worked. Six months after Randall first appeared on Amaris's doorstep, disaster struck. 
Randall had been starving himself for weeks, believing he could make the hunger go away. To him, it was an addiction, curable by abstinence. However, in his frantic, fevered state, he'd forgotten what time of year it was. When the first whistles and music began, he thought he was hearing things. Surely, he must've been going mad from hunger. And then, the Mardi Gras parade began. Warm body after warm body, filled with liquor and joy, danced through the streets of New Orleans. 
From blocks away, locked in Amaris's home, he could hear the thundering of the party goers' hearts. He could smell their life essences pumping through them with every step they took. In a maddening fury, he dashed from Amaris's bedroom, ripping her front door off of the hinges, he disappeared into the night. 
Amaris followed, led by the blood curdling screams that echoed throughout her town. When she caught up to him, there were bodies lying everywhere. He had torn the throats out of at least a hundred people as others cowered in fear, too frightened to run or look away. 
She threw herself at him, begging him to stop. Stop the killing. She loved him and he loved her. They could go away together. Randall just needed to stop. He flung her aside like a rag doll and those few people who still stood there watching with morbid curiosity, started screaming at Amaris. How could she do this to them? This monster was who she'd been helping while their children, spouses and loved ones had died over recent months. They were terrified and angry. They wanted her dead. 
In fear of the people who were now intent on killing not only Randall, but her, too, Amaris summoned every ounce of her powers, she stood in the center of the mob, protecting Randall as he drained yet another body. She balanced a large ball of violet light between her hands and as they advanced towards her and her beloved, she spread her hands wide, releasing the energy. Power and light shot from each of her fingertips and she decimated all but Randall and herself in one large release of energy. In an instant, everyone who'd tried to kill Randall and her were gone. 
When Randall broke free of his blood high, he knew his lover had killed so many to protect him and he knew he'd never be able to live with himself for allowing the one good thing in his life to turn into a monster like him. The curse could never be broken and now his love was as tainted as he. Randall did the only thing he could do. He grabbed the closest weapon he could find...a knife and slit his own throat deeply and from ear to ear. 
Amaris cried over his body for days. She lay in the center of the street surrounded by corpses as her tears mingled with the blood of her lover. She was so distraught that she didn't notice when a group of people appeared. She was taken away by them and put into a carriage, transported to town after town, imprisoned. Amaris was never harmed, for people were fearful of her. Instead, they made sure she was taken care of and she outlasted everyone who'd ever held her captive. For over one hundred years, she remained silent. 
In 1859, a coven of witches freed her from captivity and took her away to the town that is now named Salem Ridge, Indiana. She was held for trial and sent to Summerland to stand before a jury of her peers for her crimes against humanity. After being found guilty, Amaris was sentenced to a lifetime, or until they felt she'd paid for her crimes, of servitude to the council of elders. The only powers she was allowed to retain were those that helped her transport herself and other offenders to the different realms. 
With knee-length, raven-colored hair and violet eyes, Amaris exists only to help the council. She appears to be cold and aloof, but it is surely a defense mechanism used to prevent her from becoming attached to anyone. She travels naked, not because she is vulgar or profane, but baring her body in tribute to the Goddess that spared her life all those decades ago and still protects her. She feels unworthy of clothing and believes garments would only lock away the guilt she carries inside of her, hiding it from the humans she was supposed to help but instead murdered. 
She's never loved anyone other than Randall Boudreaux. Their love story has been hidden from the historic accounts of New Orleans in the 18th century, solely because the ancestors of the murdered victims did not want the world to glorify the "unsavory pair". The victims' death records state that the "sickness" took them. We all know that isn't true.
Love killed them. The love of two seemingly different people. But their love was no different than any other in history and I feel they should be remembered. Both were victims of fate who were destined to meet and fall in love. Of course, their story would have ended in tragedy, regardless. But would the townspeople have died from the various plagues that had taken so many victims in years before and after? Most likely, yes. In my opinion, the real account of how they died is much more romantic and heroic. Everyone who died that day, died trying to save everyone else. It doesn't get more romantic than that. Does it?"
Now, for your chance to win a digital copy of Wicked By Nature, answer this question in the comment section below:
If you could be anyone from Amaris's life, who would you want to be? And why? Be sure to leave me your email address, so that I can contact you in the event you win. 
Hop on to the other authors for your chance to find more great reads here: Secret Cravings Publishing Paranormal Romance Blog Hop
 To check out Wicked By Nature and my other books, head on over to here: Secret Cravings Publishing and you can find reviews here: Goodreads.

Thank you so much for stopping by and.....

XOXOXO,
Madison


Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Flashes Of Me, Cynthia Sax Release Day Blitz:




Welcome to my place and thank you for stopping by for another Smexy Fab Four release day blitz tour. Happy Release Day, Cynthia Sax! 




Blurb:

Henley, the head of cyber security at Blaine Technologies, is a man no one crosses. He watches employees constantly using his network of cameras and enforces his rules by any means possible. Rumors of his violent past, his scarred hands and huge size have resulted in him being feared by everyone… almost everyone.


Katalina, the new intern, worries about the revelation of her most painful secret much more than she fears her sexy boss’s wrath. She sees the loneliness in his dark eyes, feels the gentleness in his marred fingers, tastes the need in his kisses, and she knows he watches her. His silly rules about not stripping for the cameras and no sex at the office are destined to be broken.

Kat likes to be watched. Henley can’t look away. Will this beauty be able to tame her beastly boss?


Buy Links

Excerpt:

No one in this coffee shop knows who I am. I stand in the line, waiting to place my order. They don’t know about my past. They don’t know my last name. I tap my lavender heels against the floor, drumming an up-tempo tune into the tan-colored tile. They won’t remind me why I shouldn’t be happy.

I need to be happy. I need to laugh, to have fun, to focus on this fresh start. If I don’t, I’ll cry, and I promised my father I wouldn’t cry. I plaster a silly smile across my face and I tap my heels harder against the floor. These two actions lighten my mood, allowing me to cope with my emotions.

The bleary-eyed woman swaying in front of me yawns, adding vocals to my beat. For LA locals, it’s six in the morning. For a recently displaced New York native such as myself, it feels like nine o’clock. I’m eager to start my new job and my new life on the West Coast.

I’m two hours early. The internship orientation session at Blaine Technologies is scheduled for eight o’clock sharp, not one minute before and not one minute after. Although caffeine is the last thing I need, standing in line at this coffee shop gives me something to do and someone to watch.

I slide my gaze to the fascinating someone waiting at the front counter. The biggest man I’ve ever seen in my entire life looms over the cash register, his feet braced apart as though he’s preparing for battle. His ebony hair is cropped close to his head, hiding nothing, and he’s dressed completely in black like a villain from a 1970s spy movie.

I survey my behemoth’s broad shoulders. It’s all him under his jacket, not a hint of padding disturbing the cut. His suit is bespoke, custom made especially for his big body, and I suspect the designer was English. My mystery man is wearing Barker Blacks, his leather shoes as large as the rest of him. Even his matching dress shirt is well made, the collar and cuffs stiff and crisp.

He glances over his right shoulder, meets my gaze, and I inhale sharply. His eyes are as dark as his ensemble, his nose flattened and his chin square. Everything about him screams power, strength, vitality, and the woman in me responds, my nipples tightening, my breasts pressing against the blazer of my favorite lavender suit.

My behemoth returns his gaze to the frazzled barista and I exhale, my head spinning. It has been years since I’ve allowed myself to notice a man, to think about what I want, what I need. My fingers tremble as I smooth my flared skirt. I want this stranger desperately, more than I’ve ever wanted anyone in my life.

This is a problem, as I have no idea how to snag his attention. My last date took place when I was seventeen, and I suspect flashing my breasts at a pep rally won’t land me this sophisticated man. I chew on the inside of my cheek, having no other clever ideas.

I ponder my next steps, and my stranger moves away from the front counter, clasping a cup of coffee with his thick fingers. He ordered plain black coffee, no cream, no sugar, no whipped cream, and hell no to the chocolate sprinkles. My father likes his coffee the same way.

My mystery man stops at the lid and stir stick island and a stout man wearing mismatched jacket and pants rushes to the counter, barking his order at the disheveled barista. The rest of us shuffle forward in line. The tall skinny brunette behind me pleads into her sparkly pink phone, begging her boyfriend to give her one more chance. She’ll be the girl he needs, she promises. She’ll lose those last five pounds.

I don’t know where she’ll lose those five pounds. She’s already as thin as a yard of fine silk ribbon. I look down at my more ample bosom, my breasts wrapped snugly in the blazer.

“No, please.” The brunette sobs. “Derek! Derek!” She glances at her phone’s small screen and her face crumples. My heart aches for her. She doesn’t know how to hide her sorrow, not like I do. I can help her with this.

I touch the girl’s bare arm, diverting her attention away from her phone. “Who did your pedicure?” I feign an interest in her perfect pink toes. Although her beige sandals are adorably strappy, my goal is to distract her from her grief. “I have to know,” I insist.

The brunette wipes away her tears with the back of her hand. “I—I—I—”

I glance around us fervently as though I’m afraid someone will overhear us. The behemoth is watching me, his dark eyes glinting with intelligence. Some people think big men are dumb. Some people also think blond women are stupid and no one should wear pink at a funeral. I learned long ago to ignore some people.

“Look at what happened to me on the flight here.” I slip my right foot out of my lavender pumps and wiggle my big toe. A huge chip of coral polish has flaked off, revealing raw nail. “I rushed for a flight, banged into a baggage cart, and that was it. My pedicure was ruined.”

The brunette’s red-rimmed eyes widen. “That’s terrible.”

“It’s a disaster.” I ignore the behemoth’s shaking shoulders. He doesn’t understand. My mystery man has the strength to deal with loss directly. He doesn’t need to pretend, to use trivial distractions as a means to cope. He would never travel across an entire country seeking to escape his sadness.

“I’m in a strange city,” I explain. “I have so many cute sandals and I can’t wear them.” I shove my foot back into my shoe, hiding the offending toe.

As we exchange information and bad salon stories, the behemoth leaves. I watch his broad shoulders disappear into the LA sunshine and feel as though I’ve lost a piece of my soul, a part of my future.

Bio:

Cynthia Sax lives in a world where demons aren’t all bad, angels aren’t all good, and magic happens every single day. Although her heroes may not always say, “I love you”, they will do anything for the women they love. They live passionately. They fight fiercely. They love the same women forever.


Cynthia has loved the same wonderful man forever. Her supportive hubby offers himself up to the joys and pains of research, while they travel the world together, meeting fascinating people and finding inspiration in exotic places such as Istanbul, Bali, and Chicago.

Author Website: http://cynthiasax.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/cynthia.sax
Twitter: @CynthiaSax


Thursday, February 13, 2014

Romance... My Way Blog Hop With Scorching Book Reviews:


Happy Valentine's Day and welcome to one of many stops along the Romance My Way Blog Hop! I hope you've had an amazing time hopping from blog to blog, finding out what makes some very talented authors HOT. 
We've all seen the different tropes among various authors who try to put their own spin on tried and true romances. Between monster sex and BDSM, there are many different levels and turn-ons. Let's face it, authors write what they know and you can bet that their favorite turn-ons have at one time or another become part of their stories. That's how we are able to get so involved. If I can't feel it as I'm writing it, I know the reader won't feel it as they're reading it. 
Valentine's Day is all about the romance and that's also the genre I've chosen to write in. But, "a man who's romantic" isn't the trope I prefer. Surprised? In fact, I'm not a "bring me flowers and chocolate" kind of woman. I'd rather write about hot guys who are a bit rough around the edges. The men in my stories will never be like "well-trained dogs" who follow textbook rules. I prefer them to be more realistic...flaws and all. 




As for the women I write about...most, if not all of them have been screwed over in some way or another. They've been used, abused, thrown away and they come back fighting again and again. The women can't be whiners and after an initial period of all-night ice cream eating, I want them fired up and ready to face the world. They're strong and sometimes too independent. But, in the end, they always get what they want and need. 




Happy endings? Sometimes, there will be the occasional, predictable "happy ending", but I'd much prefer to give all of my characters a true-to-life happy ending. I mean, after all...if everyone kisses and gets married at the end, what's next? I need fireworks and passion with my romances. Unpredictability is the trope I prefer and it's where I've found the majority of my true happiness in real life. So, as long as the main characters come together in a passionate way, I'm happy. To me, bringing that to my stories is the icing on the cake.

Above all else, my heroes and heroines must have and exhibit two things...
and...

Without either of these, there isn't much holding a story or the lives of the characters together. 

Now, onto a giveaway from me. Up for grabs is Anything You Want, River Jewel Resort Series, Book 1 and a charm bracelet for Valentine's Day for ONE LUCKY WINNER. All you have to do is follow the rafflecopter instructions below. Come back everyday for more entries. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Scorching Book Reviews is also giving away a $50 gift card. So be sure to follow the link to their Rafflecopter:
 a Rafflecopter giveaway

After you've finished here, hop on to the other blogs for your chance to #WIN other GREAT PRIZES:

INLINKZ HTML code


Last, but certainly not least...Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing part of your Valentine's Day with me. I've really enjoyed the company!! I wish you happiness and unpredictable romance that rocks your socks off....



Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Happy 1st Anniversary to Me Giveaway!!



This week marks my 1 year anniversary as an author at Secret Cravings Publishing and to celebrate how very lucky I am to have such amazing readers who have supported me in this adventure...I'm giving away goodies!!
I tried to come up with some huge, phenomenal way of saying thank you. I've scribbled down a hundred drafts of profound speeches, but there's really only one way to say it...

So, let's get to the giveaway. All you have to do is enter the rafflecopter below. Complete all of the tasks and I'll notify the winner when the contest ends. 
Winner will receive:
1- Amazon Voucher for a copy of my first book with SCP:  Natural Lust
1- Amazon Voucher for a copy of the 2nd book in this series: You'll Never Be Lonely 
1- Set of Signed Bookcover Pics
1- You'll Never Be Lonely Keychain
And
1-Surprise Necklace

All of this to one lucky WINNER to say 'Thank You' for making my first year at Secret Cravings Publishing such an incredibly wonderful experience. 

Enter the Rafflecopter:

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Thank You So Very Much and Good Luck <3

XOXOXOX,
Madison