Wednesday, April 16, 2014

99 Cents for a Limited Time ~ I Hitched A Ride Into Hell by Joan Hall Hovey

A Young Adult Novelette by Joan Hall Hovey

All we wanted to do was hitchhike across Canada before we got into the college grind – get to know our country. Everyone said travelling was educational and my best friend Shirley and I thought it would be fun and exciting to go off on our own. Neither of us expected the nightmare it would turn out to be.

"…Ms. Hovey's talent in creating characters is so real, you feel their emotions and their fears. You want to yell at them to warn of the danger . . . and you do! The best suspense writer I've ever read!
Beth Anderson, Author of Raven Talks back

"...Alfred Hitchcock and Stephen King come to mind, but JOAN HALL HOVEY is in a Class by herself!…"
J.D. Michael Phelps, Author of My Fugitive, David Janssen

"…CANADIAN MISTRESS OF SUSPENSE…The author has a remarkable ability to turn up the heat on the suspense… great characterizations and dialogue…" James Anderson, author of Deadline

Monday, April 14, 2014

Chat with BWL authors in our Online Book Club

Books We Love hosts an Online Book Club on Facebook. You can ask questions of our authors or just make conversation. We're here and ready to chat!

Everyone who joins receives a free Books We Love pdf just for the asking. Read the group description and find out what you can do to easily claim your free book.

Come chat with us!

The Books We Love Online Book Club on Facebook.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Excerpt from Stone Maiden by Tina Gerow

In Stone Maiden, Ariel Knight, a nine-hundred year old gargoyle and ex-warrior for God opens a present-day bodyguard agency with her three sisters. At the request of the Angel Gabriel, they take on protecting Logan McAllister, playboy country music songwriter, who has suddenly become a prime target for all of the evil supernatural beings in the area. While Ariel tries to unravel who is behind the mysterious attacks, she is also battling a growing affection and attraction for him. To make matters worse, Logan's business manager turns out to be a master vampire who broke her heart two centuries ago and still seems to have feelings for her. Nothing like finding out your lover is a soulless bloodsucker to ruin a relationship.


eCataRomance Reviewer's Choice Award 2006

Desert Rose Golden Quill Finalist 2006 

"This was a fantastic read. It had action, comedy, hot love making and the best part. . .it read so smooth it went down like the richest chocolate. Ms. Gerow peppers the story with witty comments that make you smile or laugh out load. The characters are rich in their admirable traits and balanced by their imperfections. The reader falls in love with both of them as they continue to read and that makes this story an incredible read. The other fantastic thing in this story is the potential for a sequel. Ms. Gerow introduces many secondary characters that you fall in love with too. Hopefully, she will work on several sequels, particularly with regards to James, the Dark Redeemer." ~ Teri, Romance Junkies 

"Tina Gerow has done a fantastic job with world building! Gargoyles appear very real and she provides a rather unique and believable background for their existence. The variety of supernatural beings in STONE MAIDEN is impressive and also includes vampires, zombies, succubi, and even a rokurokubi (Japanese goblin). Paranormal fans will be delighted with the mixture without being overwhelmed.  STONE MAIDEN is an incredible start to what appears to be a fabulous series. Tina Gerow is obviously a very talented writer and she expertly combines action, romance, and the paranormal to create a book that readers will not want to put down. FIRE MAIDEN is the second book in the series and this reviewer cannot wait to read it!  STONE MAIDEN is a compelling read and one that will belong on any paranormal reader's keeper shelf. Tina Gerow has woven an intricate storyline that will leave readers begging to know when the next book will be out. Highly recommended!" ~  CK2S KWIPS AND KRITIQUES

“Take your hand off me, or I’ll remove it and several other of your favorite appendages.”
          Ariel Knight stood toe to toe with the Goliath blocking her way and stared him down.  She’d faced hellhounds, demons, vampires, and all manner of scary beasties in her time.  One oversized cowboy with a chip on his shoulder didn’t even cause her to bat an eyelash.
          “Now, sweetheart, you’re not wanted here, so why don’t you just go on back to wherever it is you came from.”
His gravelly voice reminded her of the sound her car made when she didn’t add oil for too long.  And the “sweetheart” grated on her nerves.  She took a breath, calming her simmering temper and tried to use her most professional voice along with her sweetest smile.  “This is the last time I’m going to warn you, Jeb.  I have an appointment with Logan McAllister, and no one is going to scare me off.”  From her background check of Mr. McAllister, she knew Jeb was a former bouncer and Logan’s horse trainer and sometimes security man. 
If this is any indication of his people skills, he needs to stick to the horses.
His deep chuckle reverberated around her.  “You’ve got spunk, I’ll give you that, but you’re no match for me and we both know it.  So, this is the last time I’ll ask you to leave before I help you out the door.”  His lascivious gaze slid over her like an oily caress.  “And believe me, that won’t be a hardship.”
Dream on, big boy.  I’ve been leered at by far scarier things than you.
          Quick as lighting, Ariel grabbed Jeb’s wrist.  Twisting it back at a painful angle, she used leverage to drive him to his knees and then locking his hand up behind his head, she applied more pressure to keep him there. 
The door in front of her flew open and a man right out of her fantasies stepped through and then stopped short as if he’d slammed into a solid wall.  He stared at the scene in front of him openmouthed as if still trying to comprehend what he saw.  Ariel took the opportunity to study him right back. 
He stood before her, six foot plus of golden muscular delight topped by gently waving sandy blonde hair and piercing blue-gray eyes the color of the sea after a storm.
Jeb’s whimper brought her back from her male inventory.  She glanced down to see her captive’s eyes watering from pain.       “I tried to ask you nicely,” she reminded him.
          The intensity of the scrutiny from the blue-gray eyes burned through her skin until she glanced up.  The passion swimming in the fevered depths hit her like a physical blow.  It zinged through her, touching off small sparks of awareness throughout her body and causing heat to pool between her legs.  She sucked in a breath, fighting not to drown in the sexual buffet of sensations assaulting her.  Closing here eyes for a moment, she allowed two hundred years of training to return her to her calm center. 
Ariel stood stock still as he completed his slow inventory.  And if his hungry gaze was any determination, he liked what he saw.  A flicker of pure female delight flowed through her until she reined it in.
Get your mind out of your crotch!
She’d even worn her business skirt and blazer to appear professional, but they way he looked at her gave images of him peeling her out of it to discover what secrets she hid underneath, which blew the whole professional image out the window. 
          “You must be Mr. McAllister,” she said, breaking him out of his inventory.
          “Yes,” he said finally and reached out to shake her outstretched free hand.
          “I’m Ariel Knight.  I believe we have an appointment?”
          His lips quirked just enough to show the dimple in his left cheek.  “Yes, I believe we do.”  He gestured down at Jeb still trying to break out of Ariel’s leveraged grip.  “Would you mind letting Jeb up?”
          Ariel smiled, just a small curve of her lips, and met his gaze.  She wondered briefly what his stormy eyes would look like darkened with desire as he moved inside her. 
Get a grip, Ariel.  You’re here to work, not…play.  Her traitorous body reminded her it had been quite a while since she’d played, and it would be more than happy to nominate Logan McAllister to play with.  She chided herself out of that train of thought and glanced down at Jeb.  “Now, I’m willing to let you go if you promise to keep your hands to yourself.  I really don’t want to have to hurt you.”
          Anger flashed in Jeb’s eyes and smoldered.  She knew she’d just made an enemy, but in her job, she made many more of those than friends.  Jeb’s ego was taking a beating, but from the pained look on his face, she wasn’t overly surprised when he finally muttered, “Yes, Ma’am.”
          “Ma’am works much better on me than sweetheart,” Ariel said.  She released Jeb’s wrist and stepped back so he could stand, keeping enough distance to maneuver in case he wanted to take another shot.  But he only stood, rubbed his sore wrist and glared at her.
          Logan, visibly trying to hide his smile, turned to his bouncer.  “Thank you, Jeb.  I think I can take it from here.”  Jeb looked between the two of them before nodding and turning to go.


Thursday, April 10, 2014

Excerpt from Into A Dangerous Mind by Tina Gerow

Romantic Times Reviewer's Choice Award for Best Small Press Contemporary Paranormal for 2006  

What happens when saucy, independent musician, Cassidy James, finds herself with newly discovered psychic powers and must rely on handsome, maverick FBI agent Zach Hatcher to keep from becoming a psychic serial killer's next victim?  Cassidy must learn to control her powers to help stop the killer while learning that relationships between people with psychic powers are just as confusing, but much more steamy than normal ones.  Zach fights to control his growing attraction for the killer's intended victim, while overcoming his past, which has caused him to be leery of relationships with women who possess psychic gifts.  
"Into a Dangerous Mind is a fast-paced, sexy, intriguing read!  A fresh twist on romantic suspense." ~ Jennifer Ashley, USA Today Bestselling author of Immorals: The Calling  

"Gerow has penned a pag-turner, to be sure.  Even though the reader knows who the bad guy is, the author keeps the suspense and tension tight.  The chemistry between Zach and Cassidy is top-drawer and very compelling." ~ Romantic Times BOOKReviews  

"Tina Gerow takes us on a wild and exciting ride with Into a Dangerous Mind...  Ms. Gerow sucks you in from the start and keeps you on the edge of your seat from the first sentence to the last.  The action and drama are intense.  You'll laugh, you'll cry...  This is an extremely satisfying read with a well developed story and strong, interesting characters.  With this book, settle in for an exciting ride and hold on tight." ~ EURO Reviews 
"Grabs readers' attention immediately...  Ms. Gerow mainatins this interest by crafting believable, likable characters...  Vividly portrays the horror and emotional costs that Cassidy and Zach endure...  A solid story that demonstrates Ms. Gerow is an author to watch." ~ Amanda, Fallen Angel Reviews
"Into a Dangerous Mind is a splendid romantic suspense.  Zach and Cassidy's chemistry creates sparks that could make a pyromaniac green with envy.  A keeper that sizzles with suspense and romance." ~ Cassandra Buckles, Coffee Time Romance  

"The emotion, the drama, the suspense, the hot torrid love making are all part and parcel of this amazing story.  Ms. Gerow weaves modern day dramatic suspense along with strong paranormal elements like a pro.  This new author's voice is a true pleasure to read and experience.  A truly remarkable story." ~ Teri, Fallen Angel Reviews 


She hadn’t dropped a lobster tail down the front of her dress or puked escargot on her date yet.  So far so good.  Cassidy James stepped out onto a secluded terrace at the Top of the Rock Resort, taking a few minutes away while her date paid the bill.  The empty ballroom behind her stood dark and silent, which left the terrace quiet and deserted, a welcome change from the lights and noise of the restaurant below.
Cassidy cringed as the mortification of that long ago date assaulted her.  But, she reminded herself, none of those things happened this evening.  Tonight, she’d been graceful, cultured and elegant, and the date so far had been intimate and romantic…and the most boring few hours she’d ever spent.
What the hell’s wrong with me?
Trying to ignore that particular question, she breathed deep and let out a little sigh of pleasure.  The scent of the desert filled the air, ripe with the monsoon rains she knew would sweep through later that evening.  A light breeze toyed with the ends of her shoulder-length auburn curls as she looked out over the glorious Phoenix mountainside—red and ochre in the moonlight.
Resting her forearms on the waist-high terrace railing, she glanced skyward at the gentle explosions of stars, and wondered as she always did, why everyone didn’t live here.
Lost in thought, she trembled as Brian stepped close behind her, gently pinning her in.  Turning in his arms, she smelled his expensive cologne as he cupped the back of her neck and leaned in ever so slowly for a kiss.  She thought about pulling away, but as long as he wasn’t looking for a way to talk her into bed on their second date, she didn’t see the harm in a simple kiss.
His lips brushed across hers gently before he dipped his tongue inside to taste her.  Very sweet and pleasant, but nothing that could be mistaken for blood-boiling or passionate.  Cassidy relaxed against him and into his touch, enjoying the sensations of being in a man’s arms…and wishing she felt more than she did.
The hairs on the back of her neck prickled, gooseflesh broke out all over her body, and a hard ball of dread settled low in her stomach making her nauseous.  Before she could react to the signs her body sent her, Brian changed the intensity of the kiss and slammed her back hard against the railing, grinding his body against hers.  He swallowed her gasp of surprise and outrage before he clamped a hand into her hair.  He gripped and squeezed her everywhere as alarm bells developed a shrill clang inside her head.
She struggled against him and tried futilely to push against the wall of his chest with both hands.  This couldn’t be happening.
Cassidy bit his lip until she tasted hot, metallic blood.  “Brian!  Stop it!” she screamed against his mouth.  She pounded her fists against his chest and finally succeeded in breaking through to him enough to stop his hands from roaming over her.  Even as she looked up into predator’s eyes, his rock hard erection pressed against her stomach, and terror rose in the back of her throat, tasting of bile.
Her heart pounded painfully inside her chest as he crushed his mouth against hers again.  She struggled as her internal instincts screamed for her to escape.
A sudden, intense pain seared inside her head, and, for a moment, she staggered against him.
Fear and adrenaline flowed through her in a rush, and she vowed to do everything she could to get away.  She tried to pull back.  He tightened his hold on her face and pressed her harder against the railing, his mouth still fused forcefully with hers.  She squirmed against him, clawing at his neck and arms.  Tears welled in her eyes when she realized the hot flow of blood coursing from the furrows she’d scored down his arms had done nothing to loosen his hold.
Her ears rang, and bright lights danced in her vision.
No, she couldn’t black out.  What would happen to her then?
Cassidy slumped against him again, conserving her strength as panic swelled inside her.  That primal self-defense urge to fight, to flee, to survive, broke through her panic as a fresh surge of adrenaline gushed through her body.  She elbowed Brian’s side, and he stepped back giving her room to stomp a spiked heel down hard onto his foot.  As soon as he winced and widened his stance, she drove her right knee into his groin.
The white-hot pain inside her head stopped instantly.
Brian’s hands dropped away from her face to grasp at his injured crotch.
As he collapsed on the ground in a heap, she stumbled away.  She raised one hand to her lips as she stumbled, and grabbed the railing to steady herself.
Still dizzy and weak from the aftereffects of the pain, she took a deep breath and tried to make her legs move.
Brian looked up at her.  You stupid bitch, you’ll pay for that!
Cassidy jumped.  Brian’s lips hadn’t moved.  No words had come out of his mouth.  But she’d heard his voice inside her head.
What the hell is happening? Am I losing my mind?
Brian’s hand snaked out and latched firmly around her left ankle, startling her out of her shock.
She met his blazing gaze, and renewed pain seared inside her head.  Still reacting to the overdose of adrenaline, she kicked Brian in the face, and heard a satisfying crunch.  Blood gushed from his nose, and she bolted away, rushing toward the long flight of stone steps that hugged the side of the building and led down to the front of the resort.
As quickly as her spiked heels allowed, she raced down the steps straining to hear any sounds of pursuit behind her.
“Don’t trip, don’t trip, don’t trip!” she chanted until finally she reached the last stone step.  She rounded the corner and rushed into the noisy crowd bustling around the front entrance.
Thank God for all the people.  I should’ve never gone somewhere so secluded!
A young man in the khaki uniform of the resort sent her a concerned expression.  “Are you okay, Miss?”
“I need a taxi—fast, please…”  She pulled a handful of bills from her purse and thrust them at him.
“Thank you, ma’am, that’s very generous.”  He gestured with both hands to a line of waiting taxis.
Tears stung her eyes as joy and relief warred inside her chest, and she bolted past him toward the taxi that drove up in front of them.  She tore open the door and dove inside.  She reached out to pull the door closed and came up short as she realized the man in the khaki uniform st
ood in the open doorway.
He leaned down to look at her.  “Are you sure you’re all right?”

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Excerpt from Vortex Blues by Tina Gerow
After punching his last boss in the mouth, Detective Mitch Guthrie is transferred to what he considers the worst position available for a cop--the SPOOK Squad (Special Paranormal Operations & Otherworldly Contact.) As a human with special gifts that allow him to sense non humans things get interesting when he’s assigned a partner who is a succubus, and his first case involves a succubus serial killer. Between the Sedona, Arizona vortexes, his captain--the actual Cleopatra, a gargoyle bartender named Rocky, and a fear demon who gives off a urine smell, Mitch isn’t so sure he’ll survive the week with all his body parts still intact.
"Tina Gerow's new book, VORTEX BLUES, brings to life two riveting characters. . .readers can't help but cheer them on! Like boiling water, it soon heats up and leaves no prisoners. What I enjoyed most was the build up of these two flawed characters who discover more and more about each other and the trust that slowly develops between Mitch and Molly. In closing, Tina Gerow, I have only three words for you. I want more!" ~ 4 Stars, Estefanie L, Night Time Romance Reviews

"Filled with supernatural creatures galore, Vortex Blues was a fast paced paranormal mystery. There were plenty of suspenseful and humorous moments to keep the plot rolling along. The mystery was well written and I enjoyed the byplay between the other characters. The paranormal world built by Ms. Gerow was well thought out and planned and seems like an intriguing place to visit." ~ 4 Angels, Haley, Fallen Angel Reviews


“Fuck you, Cleo.”  Molly Beck scowled across the meticulously arranged desk at her captain and fought the urge to throw something at the infuriating woman.  Not that it would do any good—people had been trying to kill this bitch for centuries.  Get a badass reputation as Queen of the Nile and even centuries later, people still feared you.  Go figure.
Cleo smiled, her dark eyes danced with mischief as she leaned back in her chair.  “Everyone but you already has fucked me, sweetie, and besides, I’m not really into women.”  She licked her lips.  “What can I say?  There’s nothing like a nice, thick cock, you know?”  She closed her eyes as if savoring the last of a decadent treat, and made a blatantly orgasmic sound in the back of her throat.
Molly resisted the urge to roll her eyes at Cleo’s habitual habit of bringing everything back to how much she loved cock.  Gee, a succubus who loves cock—I get it already.  Please don’t start telling me about Marc Anthony’s girth again or I’ll have to slit my wrists.
She decided to cut her boss off at the pass.  “Can we get back to the subject at hand?”  She rushed on before Cleo could disagree.  “I don’t need a partner—especially one who doesn’t know the first thing about the supernatural community.”
Cleo tapped a blood-red nail against her glossy lips and shrugged her mane of brunette hair off her shoulder.  Molly resisted the urge to grind her teeth—this was Cleo’s way of pretending to consider what you said, when in reality she only did it to make you feel better.  She’d already made up her mind.
Her next words confirmed Molly’s thoughts.  “Really.  I think a partner might be exactly what you need.  This serial killer’s cock-remnant rate is climbing and it’s time to bring in fresh eyes.”
Please don’t start talking about cocks again!  “Damn it, Cleo.”  She smacked her palm down on the desk causing pencils, towering piles of files and a few sundry office supplies to jump and shift.  “This is my case.  I can’t believe you think I need some fuckup leftover from another department coming in—especially a human.” 
“This human is special.  He’s a sensi-freak, a very powerful one.”
Molly wasn’t fond of the slang term, but it was in common usage in the supernatural world.
“Do you know how rare it is to have a full-blooded human who can sense and psychically communicate with supernaturals?  Besides, the whole reason he got booted out of the Phoenix PD—other than he decked his boss, that prickless wonder Dodson—was because he stopped the drug dealers and his own undercover team from raping a water dryad.” 
She leaned her forearms on her desk, accentuating her overabundant cleavage ready to burst from her very low cut, blood-red designer suit.  Then she pinned Molly with a laser stare.  “Hell, if the dryad hadn’t picked up on it and started it through the supernatural gossip grapevine, we would’ve missed a great opportunity.  And as you know, sweetie, I never miss opportunities.  He risked his career and the undercover operation to save a supernatural.  That should count for something.”
This time Molly did grind her teeth.  “How heroic,” she said dryly, although she couldn’t help a flash of admiration.  Not many humans would risk their lives, let alone their careers, for a non-human.  Congress may have passed legislation that gave supernaturals the same rights as humans, but it would be a long time before it was commonly accepted.  Right now, they were still on the fringes, considered the dregs of society by most of the world.
“I don’t care if he’s the next Gandhi, that doesn’t qualify him to horn in on my case.”
Cleo smiled, her perfect white teeth flashed, and her eyes danced with amusement.  “No, me hiring him and assigning him as your partner does.”  Cleo pushed away from her desk and stood, a sign Molly clearly recognized as the end of the conversation.  Any attempt at bargaining with Cleo past this point would only make her manipulative and devious.  Two things her eclectic captain didn’t need any more of.
“Fine,” Molly said to Cleo’s back more out of stubbornness than anything else.  “But I’m not sitting around here waiting for Mr. Stupendous to stroll in.  I’ll be at the Vortex.”  She ground her teeth when Cleo flashed a smug grin over her shoulder before disappearing down the hallway. 
“He’d just better hope he doesn’t piss me off, or I’ll have his ass for lunch…”