Midnight tonight is the deadline for getting a comment entered into the drawing for a free copy of Mating Stone by Elyssa Edwards. The second book in that trilogy, Lovers' Stone, was released this month from Ellora's Cave. Each comment gets you entered. If you've read Mating Stone and want another title, just let me know.
I've been doing a lot of promo for Elyssa Edwards, the name under which I write erotic romance because the last three releases have been from Ellora's Cave. But I do write not quite erotica, fantasy/paranormal romance as Jacqueline Roth. As myself, because I really am Jae Roth, I've written and released two books for Cerridwen Press. The first, Access Denied was a labor of love and stands alone. It's not part of any series of books. James, the hero, will always own my heart, but it took a while for him to open his to the heroine I had planned for him. So much pain and misery had led him to give up on himself and life.
The second, Measure of Healing was the first book written in my little Weres/gifted humans world, The Children of Semira. It stands on its own and you don't need to have read anything else to read it. It focuses on a Were-Cougar who finds himself responsible for a traumatized Cougar child and no one to turn to but a human doctor. She is his only hope to help the boy. Only problem is that Dr. Gabriela St. Jerome's secrets are far more dangerous than any that Alejandro might hold. So dangerous they could just get them all killed.
Bet you thought I was gonna give you and excerpt from Measure of Healing, right? Nope. Today it's something absolutely new. I'm going to give you a taste of the second book in the series that is contracted with Cerridwen, but is still in my editor's capable and brilliant hands awaiting edits. It follows the young Wolf introduced at the end of Measure. It will be a stand alone so no worries. Oh, and if you did read Measure, just know that Damian Santiago will get his own story eventually. He just has to wait until all the pieces are in place for it.
But for now allow me to introduce you to Evan Forester.
Excerpt from Circle of Wolves:
“What the hell is going on?” Sethlin Lasater came storming, or rather rolling, into Evan’s room letting the door slam back against the wall. A long ago accident had left him confined to a wheelchair, his lower body twisted and withered. “Ryder comes storming in with Singer and they lock themselves, and you, in his workroom. You come back out ten minutes later and start packing. Exactly where are you going?”
“Europe,” Evan answered without looking up from his task.
“Why?” Seth insisted.
“I have to find them.”
“Find them?” Seth’s eyes narrowed. “Do you mean what I think you mean? Are you actually going to try to find…” his voice broke off as he read the answer in his friend’s posture. They were actually going through with this ridiculous plan? Ryder, Guardians forgive him, had gone crazy and was taking Evan with him.
“Evan, you don’t have to do this.” Seth watched his friend continue to throw items of clothing into a bag. “It’s asking a lot.”
“You’d do it.” Evan glanced over at his friend then back to his packing. “You’d do it without a second thought.”
“Would I? Are you so sure about that?” Seth’s words stopped him. He looked down at the sea green eyes that were narrowed and watching him carefully. “It’s dangerous Evan.”
“But you know as well as I do that I have to go. I have to try. Someone has to make these people see reason. If we can’t do that, we are going to lose credibility, lose our place. Pulling off this little coup is the best way and maybe the only way to prove we still control things.” He shook his head, “Come on, Seth, we know what Ian really is. We know what lies behind that simpering smile even if the rest of the world doesn’t. It’s our obligation.”
“So you’re going to let him exploit your…” his friend’s voice trailed off and he looked away.
“My deformity,” Evan offered calmly as he resumed his packing. “That’s what you mean, isn’t it, Seth? Am I going to let Master Ryder exploit the fact that I am a nasty, snarling, dirty little monster one night a month to get what he wants?”
His friend looked up at him startled. “Evan, you know none of us thinks of you that way. You can’t help what you are and we’ve loved you almost your whole life despite it. Don’t you know that? Don’t you get it?”
Evan shook his light brown hair out of his face, “Don’t you get it, Seth? We’re only holding our place as the highest circle by a thread. Like it or not, fair or not, the world sees Ian’s new rank as Julien’s failure.” Evan’s mouth twisted into a wry grin, “Though I’d love to see the idiot fool enough to say that to Julien’s face.” He met Seth’s eyes, “And since everyone still believes, no matter the truth or not, that Julien is Master Ryder’s son, the failure is his too. If we can pull off this alliance, get the werewolves to agree to cooperate, it will solidify our position once again. More importantly it will solidify our master’s position.”
“How can you unite a bunch of people you can’t find? You have no idea who is or isn’t a werewolf unless he tells you or you’re caught out on a moonlight stroll at the wrong time of the month.” Evan could smell Seth’s frustration hanging heavy in the air. He could hear it in the deepening of the soft Southern twang in his voice.
“That’s why I have to be the one that goes. I can tell.” Evan tapped his nose. That sensory organ, along with his ears, was heightened by what his mother had euphemistically called his “special nature.”
“So you’re going to walk up to everyone on the European continent and say, “Mind if I sniff you?” Or,” Seth scowled, “Gee I can tell from your smell you’re a werewolf, wanna come submit humbly to absolute control and oppression? We don’t give a shit about you, but hey, we’re the good guys. Come help us shore up our faltering dynasty.”
Evan sighed. The mage conclave that had been held last week, in addition to sparking what looked to be a nasty power struggle, wanted tighter controls on werewolves and other dark creatures. Seth had come swooping down on him as soon as the announcement was made public, demanding to know what he was going to do about it. What was he supposed to do about it? Any action on his part would jeopardize everything he had built the last couple of years. Hell, it could destroy everything for which he had spent his life struggling. “You’ve been ranting about the conclave for the last week. This is what I’m doing about it, Seth. I owe our master everything I have. He didn’t have to take me in. He could have turned my parents away, or more so, turned them into the conclave for hiding a werewolf. But he didn’t, he took me into his own home and trained me. I won’t risk what I have for anyone, not even others like me. If that’s selfish, then so be it. I like my life Seth. It’s much more than I ever thought I’d have.”
His friend looked at him sadly but smiled. It was a weak smile, but a smile. “You deserve to be a bit selfish, Evan. God knows you’ve never done anything remotely selfish before. But I have to tell you, taking on this assignment doesn’t seem very selfish to me. It seems damned well noble and fool-hardy.” Seth looked away from him and frowned. “How will they welcome you, Evan? If you do find one of these mysterious packs, how will they welcome you?”
“I’m not sure, Seth. I’m not sure.”
Go check out Anny Cook and Amarinda Jones. They've posted their winner. Also take a look at the blogs by Kelly Kirch and Sandra Cox.