Friday, September 28, 2012

Guest: Author Nicole Hurley-Moore

Thanks so much Tricia for allowing me to drop by.  :)

Do you think the books we read as children influence today? For me, the answer is yes. I grew up reading fairytales, myths and legends. A Thousand and one Nights and the dark tales of Grimm... and let’s face it some of those stories are really grim. For example, in the old version of Cinderella we see her step-mother encouraging the step sisters to cut off their heel or toes to fit into the slipper, only to have their plan undone by the two pigeons calling to the prince “Cuckoo, Cuckoo, there’s blood on the shoe... she is not the true bride for you.” Of course, the prince heeds the bird’s warning and leaves with his true bride, Cinderella. See, dark and twisty!
Added to the fairytales there was King Arthur and his knights, Scheherazade and her Arabian tales and all the myths and legends from around the world.
            I found the tales instilled in me a fondness for dark, paranormal stories and history. And of course, as in all excellent fairytales the good must win and there has to be a happy ending.  I don’t know if it was the frocks, the heroes, the forests or the castles but I fell in love with medieval history. Although, the poem ‘King John’s Christmas by A.A. Milne and the ballad ‘The Unquiet Grave’ also may have had something to do with it. My first two novellas, The Trinket Seller’s Daughter and Capturing Bliss are both medieval romances. However, just as they did as a child I find my worlds of history and the paranormal merging again. Until the Stars Burn Cold, is a time travel romance filled with the promise of everlasting love and cursed rings. For daring to love the wrong woman, Jinn is cursed into a ring by an evil sorcerer. He is trapped for centuries until modern day antiques dealer Mia Templeton accidentally releases him.
            So, I find that I am still influenced by the things I read as a child and a young adult... how about you?

Until The Stars Burn Cold 
Forbidden love
Long ago in ancient Persia, there lived a pair of star crossed lovers. In a desperate bid, the lovers sought to flee the town of Adwan. But they were caught and torn apart. For his insolence, Jinn is cursed into a ring. Ages pass and empires crumble... and Jinn is still forever bound in a circle of frozen silver. Bound, that is until present day antiques dealer, Mia Templeton accidentally releases him. Mia is beautiful and Jinn, finds her somehow familiar. Is love eternal and evil everlasting? Can the power that destroyed his life in Adwan, reach through the centuries and threaten his future?

A Snippet from Until The Stars Burn Cold
Mia stirred as a loud rumble of thunder echoed over her house. She cracked open one eye ever so slightly. A flash of lightning illuminated her bedroom wall. She relaxed back into her soft mattress and closed her eyes. She was warm, comfortable and content, and as sleep threatened to reclaim her once more she wondered if it would be possible to reconnect with the delicious and vivid dream she had been having. Parts of it were beginning to disappear and she tried to hold onto the details.
There had been a man, a beautiful man with wide shoulders and lovely brown eyes and he had been kissing her. Mia let herself begin to drift, she was floating, barely conscious of her surroundings as she snuggled deeper beneath her quilt. Yet there was a nagging in the back of her brain that something was amiss. The edgy feeling told her to wake up but her body rebelled and her breath began to deepen. She reasoned that it was nothing to be concerned about; the dream coupled with the oncoming storm had disturbed her and nothing more. That was until she felt a large hand hook around her waist and pull her closer to a warm mass that engulfed her back. Biting back a scream she pushed the hand away and flung herself off the bed. She turned, faced the bed and fear, shock and amazement blended together in a tight ball in her stomach as she saw that there was a man in her bed.
A weak shaft of light pierced the darkness and she could see he was lying on his side stretched out on top of the quilt, with his arm flung across the bed. He was reaching for where Mia had been dreaming only a moment or two ago. It was then that she realized with a little relief that he was fully clothed. He wore long dark green trousers tucked into soft leather boots that ran halfway up his calf and a deep cream shirt under a leather jerkin. 
Mia stumbled across the corner of the room, grabbing the tall, metal floor lamp. She yanked at the cord and pulled the plug out of the socket. The cream silk shade fell off and rolled towards the door. Flicking on the bedroom light gave her a little comfort; at least now she could see exactly what she was up against. She edged towards the bed and looked down at her intruder.
She saw the way the man’s chest softly rose and fell. His eyes were closed and his features were relaxed. Feeling a little braver, Mia took one tentative step back towards the bed and studied the stranger’s face. He was handsome, with high cheekbones and a square jaw. His golden brown complexion was offset by his long dark hair.
Mia held the lamp in front of her like a staff. Taking a deep breath, she wished her heart would stop racing. She pushed the lamp forward and jabbed at the stranger’s shoulder.
 “Who the hell are you and what are you doing in my bed?”

Links –

Until The Stars Burn Cold available from Pink Petal Books

One lucky winner will receive a copy of Nicole's Until The Stars Burn Cold. Just leave a comment with your name and email to enter. The winner will be randomly selected. Good luck! 

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Guest: Author Cynthia Arsuaga

Thanks for having me here today Tricia.

I wanted to share my latest release, Born Again in Dreams. This is the third book in the Born Vampire Series. I got the inspiration for this particular one by researching being a savant after watching a program on television. I expanded the idea to be a part of the vampire stories I was writing at the time. With some brainstorming, I came up with the final product. I hope you enjoy the excerpts!

The Master of His Domain
Sorin Bochinsky, Master and Commander of the Eastern European Blood Family, controls everyone and everything around him, except the woman of his dreams with the face of an angel prevents his needed rest. She’s the light to his dark and pained existence. The search begins to find the mysterious woman of his nightmares before he goes insane.

An Angel Awakens
Merliah Travers suffered more than serious injuries from a car accident over four years ago. She awakens in a place where the pain and scars have hidden her away from the world. A fantasy lover leads her out of the darkness and into the light, then discovers a special ability acquired during the coma has put her in danger.

Two lost, scarred souls battle their inner demons and a fanatic killer to unite as one, to never be alone, and be born again in dreams, forever.

He stood up and pulled her to her feet at the same time. Merliah’s gaze dropped to the waistband of his black trousers, and then to the bulge at his groin, and with her eyes burning with intensity, he realized her highly aroused state. He didn’t need to use his vampire skills. Their times together in the dreams made him keenly aware of her preferences and desires. His stomach knotted with instant need with the knowledge, causing his cock to press harder on the zipper of his trousers, causing some discomfort. He enjoyed the new pleasure of reading her body instead of using his senses as a vampire to recognize them. His heart raced in anticipation of discovering the nuances of her body from this new perspective. Like exploring virgin territory.
“Do you think anyone will see us?”
“No, I believe the trees are thick enough where we are. We should be hidden. I can barely see the light on the other side.” His tongue slid along a full bottom lip. “Now, let me undress you.”
As he steadied her, he reached around her back and slowly drew down the zipper. He smiled as the dress slipped from her shoulders and down her body, landing in a puddle on the ground. She stood before him in matching black bra and panties. “I want to see every inch of your skin, to touch you all over. Experience you like this is our first time.” Then he slipped one digit under the strap of her bra and gently nudged it off her shoulder. Reaching around, he unclipped the fastener and the delicate lacy fabric fell to the ground. Cupping the lush flesh of her breasts, he kneaded the generous orbs until she leaned forward against him.
“Oh, don’t stop, Sorin,” she pleaded softly.
His fingers gently traced the contours of her brow, her cheek, her jaw, slowly moving toward the curve of her throat. Bending his head forward, he brushed his mouth across the tingling skin, trailing tiny kisses down her neck.
“Oh yes, I want that too. Please…” Her voice trailed off.
Sorin’s grin widened. “But first, I want to taste you.” He dropped to his knees between her legs and brushed his hand across the skin of her thigh. “Spread your legs for me, angel.”
Without hesitation, she did as he demanded. Using one finger, he hooked it around the elastic and tugged the slight slip of lacy fabric down over her hips, then tore them away from her body, growling his pleasure.
“Hey, those were my nicest pair.”
“I’ll get you another.” One hand held her hip and the other palmed her mound. He glanced up at her and licked his lips, then slipped his tongue between her tender folds, tasting her with a groan of what sounded like relief.
She threw her head back with a hiss, “Oh God yes!”
He sucked and licked, urged on as her cries and pants got more urgent. Pressing closer and teasing her pussy with his tongue, he then slipped a finger into her heat and groaned as he flicked more forcefully. She squirmed under his ministrations and arched her body into his mouth as she opened wider for him. He spread the swollen lips and ran his tongue from the bottom to the top but stopped just short of touching her clit. She moaned and whimpered, seeming to want to be licked senselessly. Taking the suggestion with determination, he licked and tugged all around the sensitive nubbin, resisting the little nudges she kept making to push him to the point of pleasure.
Finally, she grabbed his hair. “You’re teasing me. Touch me there,” she demanded.
A soft growl vibrated in the back of his throat and he chuckled inwardly. His angel was taking control and he’d have none of that. Bringing her to submission was his primary goal and he’d provide the incentive for her to succumb to his dominance. The more his lips touched hers, the more he insinuated his control over her. As soon as she let go of his hair, he sucked the waiting clit inside his mouth and flicked his tongue over and over until she screamed.
“Shh, angel. You’ll draw attention to us.” He stopped and waited for her to catch her breath then started licking and sucking again. Just when he sensed she was about to climax again, he stopped and stood up.
“On your hands and knees, angel.” As she complied with his demand, he divested the remainder of his clothing. He dropped to his knees and positioned his long and thick cock at her entrance. “You’re so wet and ready for me.” Then he ran his cockhead along her swollen folds, lubricating the tip with her juices, and with one thrust he pushed inside her hot sheath. She groaned and pushed back against him until he entered her just a few inches. He stopped and pulled out and repeated again. The soft mewing noises she made indicated her need for more, and still he stopped just short of fully entering her. He wanted her begging and he didn’t have to wait long. His angel was a quick learner.
“Please,” Merliah cried.
“Please what?”
“Make love to me. I can’t stand it anymore. I need you inside, Sorin.”
Obliged to please, he plunged his rock-hard cock deep into her moist heat. As her wet sheath gripped him, he roared his pleasure, which echoed through the forest of her creation. Her internal muscles contracted around his shaft, wringing another moan from both of them. She met his rhythm, urging him on. The need to feel her milk him to completion pulsed through his body. “So tight and wet.” He leaned over and growled into her ear.
Merliah tilted her head to the side, exposing the smooth, pale skin of her throat. The desire to bite her burned inside him, but his fangs did not descend. The beast within didn’t claw at his chest.

After four years wandering in the darkness of her mind, ready to succumb to the grim pain, Merliah experienced such desperation, depression and fatigue, she wanted to scream and find a way to end the misery. The strong survival instinct brought her out of the coma initially years ago, but her strength to fight remained hanging by a thread. This wasn’t living, awake and aware but unable to communicate in any form was like death. When the pitch-blackness first happened, she tried repeatedly to call out, but her voice couldn’t be heard. Relentless, she tried over and over, to move a toe, a finger, and she even cried to draw attention. The nurse, who witnessed the one tear, all those years ago, dismissed the physical plea.
Merliah’s parents had her moved from the hospital to another facility. She understood the distant voices calling the new place, Berger Institute. The first reaction was of shock. Ohmigod, I’ve been put in an institution with crazy people. Am I insane? She refused to believe Robbie abandoned her, but after leaving the hospital, she never heard his sweet voice again. The man she loved gave up and left her without saying good-bye and her imprisonment became more painful and lonely. Her parents’ voices faded as well. Time ceased for her and she slipped deeper and deeper into the gloomy abyss, existing on a different plane of consciousness. She could hear and feel on the outside, but remained in the darkness of her mind unable to communicate to her loved ones. Time seemed to cease to exist. She’d occasionally hear the staff celebrating a holiday, but after a few coming and going, Merliah stopped counting. The instinctive will to survive faded.
One more cry out into the emptiness before she resigned to death’s call was made as a last resort, and to her surprise and elation, a voice answered. First, faintly, then it grew louder. A deep, melodic, and velvety voice broke through the darkness reaching toward her. It was a man, with a beautiful deep tone. His voice consoled her, wrapped around her and pulled her toward the light. She cried tears of joy and then a slight fear overtook her thoughts. Am I dead? Is he the Angel of Death from the stories I’ve read?
Up to that point, everything that made sense in her black world evaporated. Minutes, hours, days, months slipped by slowly and now someone reached out to her. How long she wandered aimlessly in her mind, often time curled up in a ball in the depths of the bottomless pit, she didn’t know. Time meant nothing without any reference point. The sweet-sounding, shadow man had found her, and brought her into the light. Who was he and how did he find her when no one else could? She didn’t know and didn’t care about the details. He had found her, the only thing that mattered.
From the murky shadows, arms outstretched to clasp on to reality. She jolted when his cold hand touched hers, swiftly pulling her toward the light with his commanding voice guiding the way. Feeling the strong power moving her forward, she feared he was the Dark Angel of Death and not salvation to the world she had known before the blackness became her present life. She pulled back from the stranger, frightened more than relieved. As she battled with the fear, she glanced up but was unable to view his face, only sense the touch which set her skin afire.
Several seconds ticked by, and a little more of the self-control eroded away. His dominant presence began to put her at ease, and with one foot in front of the other, he guided her through the prison of hopelessness.
“Come with me, you’ll be okay. I won’t hurt you.” The voice spoke softly, a low, lyrical, and heavily accented one. Where is he from?
The power he exuded surrounded her again and his efforts to save her worked as she fell under his spell and into the tight embrace. Fear, anger and desperation had driven her to this desperate position. She either had to trust him to lead her home or believe he was Death, or allow him to eliminate the misery of her present existence. Either way, the hellish nightmare would end. Could she leave the nightmare and be born again in dreams? Apprehension still held her back because he could be nothing more than wishful thinking on her part.
“You scare me. I called out for a long time and you’re the first person to answer my cries. Am I dead?” The words were tentative, barely above a whisper.
“I don’t sense you are. Blood runs strong through your veins. Your skin is warm and your eyes are bright. You are definitely alive,” the shadow man’s velvety voice soothed her.
Ohmigod, this man’s voice could melt icebergs. He certainly did a good job of bringing life back into her desolate reality. Merliah’s senses screamed as if she were freefalling over a cliff, becoming light-headed and the wind knocked out of her lungs. Between his seductive words and the sensuous touch, the hunger of desire clawed her insides to be released. The arousal continued with thin fingers tickling up and down her spine. The light touches lit nerve endings on fire and caused her pussy to contract. Her clit ached for attention, a simple caress to ease the need she had not felt in God only knows how long.
The world she once remembered swirled in heat and desire. She swallowed hard and tried to stifle the passion down building in her core. The power of his presence shoved right back. Merliah stumbled backward and gasped as the energy surged upward when gazing into the glowing red eyes piercing through the darkness. The stare was one of a predator, a carnal stare which stole her breath and sent her head spinning. She tried to breathe through the fire consuming her.

Cynthia Arsuaga
Erotic Romance Author

About the Author
Cynthia resides in Orlando, Florida, the land of magic, surrounded by the treasured gems in her life, a caring, loving husband, dutiful and loyal daughter, and precious, delightful granddaughter. Oh and not to forget her mischievous Yorkshire terrier, Thumper.
Cynthia was a “Navy Brat” calling a different port home every couple of years—from Southern California, to Boston, to Virginia, to Florida. She developed wandering feet and diverse interests, and passionately incorporates those experiences into her stories, bringing characters to life, and eloquently sharing the vivid images of her mind with her audience.
Cynthia’s debut release, Born to Be Wild, came available January 12, 2011 and can be purchased at The list of releases available by her has grown. Born Again in Dreams is her twelfth release with Secret Cravings Publishing and more are on the schedule for release in 2012 and 2013.

Other Books by Cynthia
Born to Be Wild
Born to Play
Top Dog
Love and Death in the Big Easy
A Gift of Love
Texas Heat
The Cougar and Her Vampire
Vampire in Paris
Echoes in Eternity
Nightfall: Fantasies Fulfilled
Christmas with a Stranger (Free)
Five Hearts Anthology