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Currently Browsing: Sunday Snippet
Nov
10

Sunday Snippet – Long Shot

Sunday Snippet – Long Shot        About the Book Long Shot Author:  Hanna Martine Publisher:   Berkley Released:  October, 1, 2013 REVIEW HERE Snippet “Leith MacDougall, what a surprise!”  Evidently Sue McCurdy did know how to smile, and it was when the town’s celebrity was in touching distance.  Today’s Syracuse T-shirt was navy blue, and the age-inappropriate hairstyle was pigtails sticking out from just behind her ears.  The mayor stood in the open door of Town Hall, beaming right over Jen’s head at the big man at her back.  “To what do I owe this pleasure?”  Leith moved to Jen’s side, crowding her on the small front stoop, their arms touching briefly.  “Just dropping off Jen,” he said. Sue blinked at Leith, then shifted a confused glance to Jen, as though seeing her for the first time. Jen understood.  Leith somehow managed to consume the atmosphere and draw eyes wherever he went.  If he were a true celebrity, his pockets would be full of women’s underwear.  Dimly, Jen wondered if he’d ever found the pair of hers they’d lost in the dark woods one night a long time ago. …Maybe he’d finally forgiven her.  Maybe he hated her and was doing a damn fine job of covering it up.  That second thought made her want to throw up. “Thought I’d come say hi, too,” Leith said to Sue, “and to let you know Chris’ll be taking over your yard when I’m gone.” “Are you helping Jen?” Sue asked Leith, her eyes brightening.  “Because that would be just fantastic.” The smile he gave Sue was pure gold.  “Wish I could, Mayor Sue.” The mayor leaned forward conspiratorially.  “But you’re going to throw, right?  Your last hurrah before you leave us for good?”  Leith was laughing in a genial, polite way until Sue added in a syrupy voice, “It’s what your father would have wanted; I’m sure of it.” Maybe Sue didn’t notice, but Jen did – that little hiccup in Leith’s laugh, the slight narrowing of his eyes.  Then those were gone, leaving Jen to wonder if she’d actually seen them. “I’m sure he would have,” Leith slowly replied, “but I just haven’t been training like I should. Out of practice, you know.  Besides, I’ll be gone by then.  The Carriages – you remember them?  Rory and Hal, the Hemmertex president?  Anyway, Rory called me out to Stamford to redesign their entire property.  I’ll be going back and forth until I find permanent digs down there....
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Nov
3

Sunday Snippet – The Lotus Palace

Sunday Snippet – The Lotus Palace    About the Book The Lotus Palace Author:  Jeannie Lin Publisher:   Harlequin Released:   August 23, 2013 REVIEW HERE Snippet … Yue-ying went downstairs to fetch a plate of red bean cakes from the kitchen as it seemed the men would stay awhile.  When she returned, the old historian had turned the conversation back to the imperial court. “This is an opportunity to advise the Emperor that he must change course.  Heaven has given us a sign.  Earthquakes and floods have ben known to topple dynasties,” the historian pointed out sagely. Bai Huang was already shaking his head.  “A sign of what?  It sounds more like superstitious doomsaying,” he said with a bored look. “What does it matter if it’s superstition or not?  If such a disaster gains the Emperor’s attention, then it can be used as a means to an end,” Taizhu argued.  “This morning’s disaster serves as a better excuse for a couple of friends to complain over tea,” Bai Huang contended, lifting his cup.  He attempted to drink, then frowned and peered into it, finding it empty. As Yue-ying bent to fill the empty cup, Bai Huang startled her once again, halting her movement. “What do you think, Little Moon?” he asked. Mingyu’s mouth pressed tight at the casual endearment.  Yue-ying glanced at Bai Huang.  Dark eyebrows framed his face, giving him a serious expression that was contrary to his usual carefree manner.  The nobleman had never spoken directly to her in such company before. “Has the earthquake provided you with any signs?” he persisted. The room fell silent.  Old Taizhu affected a shallow cough and sipped his tea in silence.  Bai Huang was the only one unperturbed.  He continued to look at her, smiling crookedly as he waited for an answer.  His gaze on her was insistent, but not unkind.  Yue-ying looked nervously to Mingyu before answering.  “I was frightened at first,” Yue-ying admitted.  “But sometimes rain falls and sometimes the earth moves.  That was all it seemed to me.” “Yue-ying.”  The courtesan’s command was soft, yet somehow sharp  “There is no need for you to remain here.  You are free to continue with your other duties.” Yue-ying immediately set the pot down without refilling Lord Bai’s cup and retreated toward the door. Mingyu regained control of the conversation quickly.  “Old Taizhu, have you considered that the earthquake might have been a warning to those bickering faction in court rather than our gracious Emperor?” Bai Huang would find himself cut out of the conversation for the next...
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Oct
13

Sunday Snippet – Under a Spell

Sunday Snippet – Under a Spell    About the Book Under a Spell Author:  Hannah Jayne  Publisher:   Kensington Released:  August 6, 2013  REVIEW HERE Snippet I groaned and grabbed my door, flinging it open.  “Nina, what the hell is go–” “Shhhh!”  I was met by a chorus of angry hisses and then the business end of a megaphone as Nina yelled, “Cut!” directly into my face.  She pinched her icy, bony fingers around my elbow and yanked me into the kitchen, which had miraculously gone from cozy mess to break room chic: our mismatched collection of hand-me-down mugs with unappetizing statements — Carrie for Prom Queen, The Problem is Gonorrhea— had been replaced by an orderly heap of stolen straight-from-the-UDA Styrofoam stand-in mugs and brown paper napkins stamped with the Starbucks logo.  Our sugar bowl was stuffed with pilfered packaged sweeteners and coffee stirrers, and bottled water bloomed from an ice bath in the sink.  There was a hastily arranged basket of individually wrapped snacks that I recognized– basket, bagels, and all– from the Red Cross station on Second Street. “What is all of this?” Nina swept an arm toward the cleared out living room.  “Auditions.” I scanned the room and frowned.  “Auditions?  For the UDA commercial?”  I rolled up on my tip-toes and eyed the woman pacing my living room.  She couldn’t have been under five feet nine inches tall or over eighty pounds.  She took short, careful steps, smacking a sheaf of papers against her bony hip as she spoke soundlessly, her eyes bright and batting, engaging the struggling kitten on my Hang in There! poster. “Who is that?” Nina produced a clipboard from somewhere and thrummed through a stack of eight-by-ten black and white glossies.  “Um, that is Stella MacNeir.  Don’t you just love her?” I pinched my bottom lip.  “What department does she work in?  I don’t think I’ve ever seen her.  Is she new?” “Uh, new like just off Broadway.” I raised my eyebrows, impressed.  “Like, Broadway, Broadway?” “Like Broadway at Kearney, San Francisco.” “That’s Big Al’s porn shop.” Nina leaned through the kitchen-living room pass-through.  “Thank you, Stella.  We’re going to wrap up for the day.  We’ll be in touch.” “Wait.  You’re auditioning people for the UDA commercial who don’t work at UDA?” “I need the best, Soph.” I gaped as Stella slid into a neon-pink leopard-print jacket and slipped one of my Frescas into her knock-off handbag before she slunk out the door. “That’s the best?” Nina looked casually over her...
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Oct
6

Sunday Snippet – Blood Bond

Sunday Snippet – Blood Bond    About the Book Blood Bond Author:  Jeanne C. Stein Publisher:   ACE Released:  August 27, 2013  REVIEW HERE Snippet Next morning, Frey and I are the last to the breakfast table. I’m glad no one asks why.  It would be embarrassing.  Even an adult daughter doesn’t want to acknowledge that she’s late coming down because she and her fiancé were having sex.  Lots of sex.  Great sex.  Sex so good I didn’t want stop.  When I feel color start up the back of my neck, I decide what I’d better do is stop thinking about it. I slink into a chair at the table and reach for the coffeepot.  “Where are the kids?” I ask pouring myself a cup. Dad avoids my eyes.  Shit.  Were we making too much noise? Mom picks up the slack.  “Gone next door.  Trish and John-John arranged an early morning ride before Trish has to go to school.”  She casts an apologetic eye to Frey.  “I hope that was all right.” Frey smiles.  “Of course.  Trish mentioned their plans last night.  And John-John has been riding since before he could walk.” Mom grins then.  “They left hours ago.” I lower my head.  Yikes.  I glance at Frey but he seems oblivious.  He’s buttering toast with the gusto of a man who’s just experienced an earth-shattering orgasm. I clear my throat.  “So what’s on the agenda today?” Mom slips on her reading glasses and consults her ever-present list pad.  “Well.  After school you and Trish have to go into town to pick up the dresses.  And you should call anyone in San Diego that you want to come for the wedding.  And you need to decide who you want to officiate the service.” “Which reminds me.”  Glad for a chance to banish the pesky image of sex from my head, and maybe Dad’s, I jump up from the table and fetch the brochure we got yesterday from the consulate.  “Have you ever heard of this group?” For the next hour we do our homework, not only going through the brochure but pulling up the website for the organization calling itself Gracefully Personalized Ceremonies.  Even Mom, who I know would have preferred a Catholic ceremony, had to admit she found the philosophy of a non-secular yet devout exchange of vows fitting. “And the sooner those vows get said, the better,” Dad mutters under his breath. I wasn’t wrong.  What did he do, come up to get us for breakfast? ...
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Sep
29

Sunday Snippet – Possession

Sunday Snippet – Possession    About the Book Possession Author:  Kat Richardson  Publisher:   ROC Released:  August 6, 2013  REVIEW HERE Snippet “Any luck?” I asked, hearing Wrothen snort in derision behind me. “Depends on how you define that.  Lots of ghosts around, but they aren’t talking to me.”  Then he drew and excited breath and perked up, staring over my shoulder toward the bed.  “Oh! She’s up!” “No, she’s not,” the nurse snapped, looking at the monitors and making rapid notes on an electronic clipboard.  “Her blood pressure is up, and she’s upright, but she’s not awake.” “I didn’t say she was awake,” Stymak objected. Ignoring the argument, Goss rushed toward the bed and I followed her. The patient – sickeningly thin, her dark hair hanging limp around her head — was sitting rigidly upright in the bed and staring straight ahead as her left hand groped across the bedspread for something. Goss snatched a flat paintbrush from a jar on the nearby table and put it next to her sister’s seeking hand.  Julianne grabbed it, but nothing else in her body or face seemed to react. I could see the silvery mist of the Grey coiling around her in a thick, moving mass.  A clutter of shadows pushed and boiled near the bed, then began to draw aside as the patient started painting on the bedspread. Goss pushed the table with the easel over to the bed and into place in front of Julianne, who transferred the brush to the canvas.  The patient daubed at the canvas with the empty brush for a moment before she swung her arm suddenly to swirl it I paint from the art supply table.  She moved no more of her body than her arm, not turning or looking at what she was doing.  Then she went back to the canvas, painting with rapid movements. I drew closer, peering at her.  Her aura hadn’t changed since I’d entered the room, but something opaque and dark now hung over her left arm and side, wrapping around her back.  Her half-open eyes were focused not on the canvas or the supplies near her, but slightly upward and far away.  Her mouth was slack.  Goss and Wrothen stood on either side of the head of the bed while I moved closer and then past the foot of the bed, more interested in watching Julianne than seeing what she was painting.  Stymak was somewhere behind and to my right, but I didn’t spare any attention for him....
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Sep
22

Sunday Snippet – Vicious Moon

Sunday Snippet – Vicious Moon    About the Book Vicious Moon Author:  Lee Roland Publisher:   Signet Released:  July 2, 2013 REVIEW HERE Snippet We sat at the table, and oh, it felt good to be there.  Stupid, I was totally stupid.  But I had to get to the reason I’d been kidnapped. “Gran, why did you send the Sisters of Justice after me?  That’s pretty drastic.  You must have pulled in some favors.  Especially if you got them to put up with Herschel.” “There is one Sister I call a friend.  A powerful Sister.  I asked her to find you and to take Herschel so you wouldn’t be frightened and run from them.  They probably shouldn’t have sent three, but I’m told if they hadn’t, you would have escaped them.”  I heard pride in her voice, not admonition.  It didn’t last ling.  “Nyx, if you had stayed in touch..” Ouch.  She was right.  I wasn’t a great communicator.  I could have written her from San Francisco at any time.  And if I’d actually seen Herschel with the Sisters, I might not have been so quick to run. Gran sighed as she sat in her chair  “I suppose I could have had the coven find you, but this problem is none of their business.  They’re the reason you ran away in the first place.  I’ll never forgive them for that.”  She sat quietly, hands wrapped around her teacup.  The fine wrinkles on those hands were overlaid with brown spots of age.  One finger twitched ever so slightly.  “Nyx, I fear something has happened to your sister.” “Marisol?  Where is she”  Marisol had always been the darling of the family.  Jealousy did rear its head occasionally, but since I was a loner by nature, it didn’t plague me a lot.  When Mama died, it fell to me to help care for her and keep her from toddling off and drowning in the swamp.  She was a good girl, always loving and loved in return, even by me.  She also had the makings of a powerful witch, something I would never be. Tears formed in Gran’s eyes, and her small body shook.  I wanted to soothe her, but I didn’t think anything I could say or do would help.  When she stilled, she said, “Marisol went to Duivel.  Now she’s disappeared.” My sister had, even in her youth, quickly surpassed Gran and her other teachers.  What kind of trouble required her magically incompetent sister to help?  My use of...
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Sep
15

Sunday Snippet – Bite Me

Sunday Snippet – Bite Me    About the Book Bite Me Author:  P J Schnyder Publisher:   Carina Press Released:  June 24, 2013 REVIEW HERE Snippet “I want a blood sample.” Seth narrowed his eyes. “Why?” “Whatever it is you’re on, I figure it’d be useful to help the newer wolves with their rage control.”  Danny paused.  “Or I could sell it as a recreation drug.  I’d make a fortune.” Seth tossed a towel at the pack medic and stood up from the weight bench where he’d been pressing more weight than any three human body builders could have handled.  “Get on, then.” “Seriously, man, I left you out on a solo patrol cause you had to burn off some temper, and you come back all sunshine and posies.”  Danny handed Seth a water bottle.  “One of the pups freaked out , thought he might have seen an actual smile on your face.  Maybe.” “I smile.” “Only fresh from killing zombies, covered in gore and high on adrenaline.  You’ve got a reputation for being a bit mad, you know.  Seeing you smile like a normal man, in the middle of the day?  Nah.  That’s enough to creep me out too.” Seth growled.  Danny had known him for years, well enough to know there’d been a time when he’d smiled like a normal. Danny held up his hands.  “All right, fair enough.  But I am curious.  What happened last night to trigger such a big change?  I won’t say how long it’s been, but it’s good to see.” True enough. Mollified, Seth turned his attention to removing the heavy weight plates from the bar and returning them to the rack.  “There might have been some zombie killing involved.” “Not the main reason, I gather.”  Danny was a smart man and didn’t push the joke further. “I might have found a lady.” “Did you save her from the zombies?” Wouldn’t that have been classic? If she’d have ben an ordinary damsel in distress, he’d not have stuck around after saving her.  Nah.  And if he’d have called Maisie a damsel in anything, she’d have stabbed him with one of her crutches.  Or used it to crack him over the head. Seth chuckled.  “Well, now, she was in the process of saving someone else from zombies, but I decided to step in when those idjits’ screaming attracted more.” “Sounds like an interesting woman.”  There was a cautious note in Danny’s voice. Rightly so.  Seth hadn’t mentioned details and the last...
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Sep
8

Sunday Snippet – The Magic of ‘I Do’

Sunday Snippet – The Magic of ‘I Do’    About the Book The Magic of ‘I Do’ Author:  Tammy Falkner Publisher:   Sourcebooks Released:  June 4, 2013 REVIEW HERE Snippet One bedchamber?  Was the man daft?  There was no possible way Claire was going to share a bedchamber with him.  “Have you lost your sense?” she hissed as Benny stalked out of the kitchen toward the front of the house.  “I will not share a bedchamber with you.” “I’m afraid you don’t have a choice, Miss Thorne,” Fin drawled.  “Trust me, the idea of it doesn’t settle well with me either.” He didn’t like the idea of sharing a bedchamber?  She highly doubted that .  A small part of her was momentarily offended by his comment.  She’d been told she had striking features.  Why don’t you want to share a bedchamber with me?” she asked impulsively.  She wanted to bite the words back as soon as they left her mouth. “I tend to favor a warm bed partner, Miss Thorne.  Not a cold one.”  He stalked past her and into the corridor. Her offense at his lack of interest was absolutely absurd.  But it niggled at her more than a little.  She shoved the thought aside and forced her attention back to the facts at hand.  “I think we should go elsewhere.  At least an inn would have staff.” “They have staff where you come from, Miss Thorne?”  He continued down the corridor toward… Where was he going?  “In your land, Miss Thorne?” he prompted. Of course.  Her land was structured much like his, except hers was prettier.  And in hers, things tended to be a little more fanciful.  “My grandfather is one of the Trusted Few, my lord.  Do not doubt my origins.” “Trusted Few?” he parroted, his brow quirked at her.  A grin tugged at his lips.  Why was that amusing? “The governing body in our world.  Much like your aristocracy.  The House of Lords.” “Only you have a house with a trusted few?” He chuckled.  “Certainly, you do.”  He finally came to a grand room lined with books, which must have been his library.  Claire gazed at the overstuffed shelves.  One of her favorite pastimes was reading, and she nearly salivated at the thought of looking through all the books.  She forced her attention back to him.  “When will we be leaving.” “When Robin sends words that his business is concluded.”  He dropped into a chair behind his desk and began to sort through a stack of correspondence.  “Is...
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Sep
1

Sunday Snippets – A Cursed Embrace

Sunday Snippets – A Cursed Embrace    About the Book A Cursed Embrace Author:  Cecy Robson Publisher:   Signet Released:  July 2, 2013 REVIEW HERE Snippet I perked up.  “Did you learn French, too?” Aric shrugged.  “A little here and there.” “Just enough to get some tail, Ceila.”  Liam spoke casually as if merely stating common knowledge.  He’d walked in to grab a pack of mini marshmallows from the pantry.  Too bad Emme hadn’t done so in his place. I didn’t need to know more about Aric’s sexual past.  The females who flaunted and threw themselves at him were enough evidence of his prowess. Liam did a double take when he caught my open mouth and almost dropped the small package.  HIs hand shot out as he realized his mistake.  Sort of.  “Don’t worry, Celia.  All those one-might stands didn’t mean anything to him, right, Aric?” Aric’s glare had Liam backing into the sliding glass doo.  Koda stuck his head in, his brows set deep and his long black hair descending to his thigh-thick arms.  “All you had to do was grab some damn marshmallows.  Shut your trap and get outside before Aric eats you.”  He gave me a stiff nod before disappearing outside. Aric’s light brown eyes softened when they met mine.  “That was a long time ago, sweetness,” he whispered.  I supposed I was his way of offering an explanation or attempting to apologize.  I nodded but found myself inching away from him.  It hurt too much to think about other hands caressing Aric, especially when my own had barely touched him.  No matter how hot, his tempting heat stood no chance against my raging insecurities.  “Baby, I–” Did you find anything, Danny?”  I spoke to Danny, but by that point I’d twisted enough to face Bren.  Bren could’ve laughed, or joked, or asked Aric for details about his indiscretions.  But he didn’t.  He sensed my hurt, and he didn’t like it.  That was the great thing about Bren.  All kidding aside, he really cared about me. “You okay?” he mouthed. My clenched jaw screamed no, and that I was in over my head with Aric.  Bren made a motion to stand, but it was Danny who actually save me.  He cleared his throat hard enough to make him cough into his hand.  “There is something here.  Daemonium consaguineis loosely translates into demon kin from Latin to English.”  HIs finer traced along the passages as his mind worked to translate the words.  “It’s believed a new...
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Aug
25

Sunday Snippet – Sweet Madness

Sunday Snippet – Sweet Madness    About the Book Sweet Madness Author:  Heather Snow Publisher:   Signet Released:  April 2, 2013 REVIEW HERE Snippet …”Have you considered that your affliction could stem from traumas you experienced during battle?” He regarded her.  “I’d be a fool not to have,” he answered.  He still had the dreams of death and battle and even the waking nightmares occasionally.  “In fact, I have often wondered if that is where this lunacy got its start.” The dreams had brought on terror and confusion, but he’d take that every day of the year over the bouts of madness that had marked his past months.  “But even were that the case, it has gone far beyond anything I suffered from the wars.  And therefore beyond both your experience and your best intentions, I’m afraid.” “I will admit I’ve never seen a situation quite like yours,” she said tactfully.  “Bu don’t underestimate me.  I dare say my methods will be better than what you’ve endured thus far.  Mr. Allen told me of the purges, the cold baths, the leeching.”  An involuntary shiver shook her shoulders.  “He said you even asked to be blistered?” This time the shiver was his.  He’d never forget the agony of hot plasters being placed on his skin, raising blisters that were then lanced and drained.  “That’s barbaric, Gabriel.  Why would you let them do such a thing?” “Why do you think?” he shot back in clipped tones.  This time it was he backing away from her, ashamed.  Did she know everything of his time in this madhouse?  “Because some bloody doctor told me it could heal me.  Some blather about the overstimulation of my nerves and restoring my natural balance, and hence my sanity.” The worst part of it was that he’d thought it had worked.  For a few hopeful weeks, he’d been episode free and begun to dream about returning home and picking up his life.  But then he’d had another episode, one worse that any before it.  “I’d have done anything to be the man I once was,” he finished in a low voice. Penelope surprised him by not allowing his retreat.  She followed, placing herself so close he could detect her subtle scent.  She tilted her head up slightly.  She wasn’t a short woman, but neither was she tall.  Rather, she was the perfect height to capture his gaze and his attention. “Then don’t send me away, she said.  “I may have started down this path unintentionally, but I...
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