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James Bond and martinis for the new year

Is there any better combination than a sexy guy and the perfect martini? Even better if that guy is handsome, charming, fictional and creates a martini and names it after you. Bonus? You aren't a good girl who does everything right. You're a double agent who gets to travel the world, do naughty things and look great while doing them.

James Bond's famous “shaken not stirred” martini, The Vesper Martini, is named after Vesper Lynd, a character first introduced in Ian Fleming's 1953 novel Casino Royale. Despite her poor treatment of him, coming in the form of her being a double agent who assisted in his kidnapping, he continues to think about her. Super-secret badass spies have a weakness for smart, tricky women. If you’re a up for a good time, watch Casino Royale and its sequel, Quantum of Solace, back to back.


Looking forward to 2014

As 2013 comes to an end some of us find ourselves looking back at the events of the year. Good and bad, expected or not, you can’t go back and change what happened but you can keep history from repeating itself.

2013 was a good year for me. After a serious health issue with my husband my writing took a back seat as my family was front and center. Luckily my husband has beaten the odds and every day grows stronger and continues his fight. He is always constantly cheering me on from the sidelines to write.

Write and be happy. And I have and I am.

I had huge things happen for me! And I have to take a minute to thank all of you for making it happen. So to all of you… my readers, my publisher, editors, cover artists, and the entire team that make what I do… what I love to do a huge thank you from the bottom of my heart. I wouldn’t be here without all of you!

The first six books of the Were Chronicles came out in two print volumes. While I had one print story as part of an Anthology called Caught in the middle the two Were Chronicles print books were a first for me. I can’t even explain the feeling of opening a package and having a book right in front of me with my name on it. It’s not something I will ever forget.

I also did my very first author interview with UK’s female first. This was so awesome and although I was nervous I am so glad that I did it. The book Pack Daughter that I spoke about reached new limits and I couldn’t be more pleased.

The Were Chronicles Series continued with five new installments in 2013. Pack Community, Pack Mates, Pack Daughter, Pack Hunter, and Pack Council were all released in EBook format. Five books in one series! I couldn’t believe it!

I am also thrilled that I was asked to be involved with Totally Bound’s new imprint: What’s her Secret? My story Last Call was released in November and was such a blast to write.

Another exciting happening was the launch of a brand new website dedicated to the wolf shifters from the Were Chronicles. At this new site we added more information about every book, a guestbook that results in monthly prizes, a track the pack page where you can see where your favorite pack lives, and a page just for the characters to talk about whatever they want. IT was really fun to make this new website and I look forward to where it will go from here.

It seems like I finally hit my stride in 2013 and I have carried that over into the upcoming year. 2014 promises to be just as exciting but with so very much more!

Coming soon: A brand new novel length spin off series from the Were Chronicles. Have you wanted to see more shifters than the wolves? Enjoy longer books than the Were Chronicles novella length offer? Or just can’t get enough shifter romance? Then I have the new series for you! In April 2014 we will see the release of the first book of the Shifter Chronicles. I’ve worked long and hard on this new series and I hope everyone enjoys it as much as I loved creating this new world.

More Were Chronicles: We’re not done yet! The installments of the Were Chronicles will continue to come. Book Ten will come alive in May 2014 and as we travel to a brand new Pack in the panhandle of Texas I am looking forward to introducing you to the next powerful men and women.

More books coming your way. I’ve already started to receive release dates for some of my upcoming stories and I am thrilled to say that I plan to give you plenty to read.

I would love to meet you! That’s right in 2014 I will be attending my very first convention. The convention and plane tickets have already been purchased so no backing out for me! I won’t lie, I am super nervous, but looking forward to it also. I will be at the RT Convention in New Orleans in May. If anyone else attends I would really love to sit and talk with you!

More contests or prizes! I will continue to run a monthly contest at the new Were Chronicles website in 2014 plus have more planned. We’ll start in January with my blogs Flashback Friday. Every Friday in January I invite you to stop by my blog. and check out the books from my backlist. I will be giving away gift cards and other prizes.

I hope you will stay with me as we start the new year and the months to come! I look forward to seeing where we will go!


Crissy Smith



Love, lust and revenge during the English Civil War

Puritans and Roundheads at war with Cavaliers and Royalists provide a rich background for a story-teller.

I'm a history lover as much as a romance writer, so when I pitched my story idea for The Cavalier  for inclusion in the collection of four stories that would make up TEB's 'Bodices & Boudoirs' collection, I was delighted to be given the go-ahead to write an erotic romance that has long been lodged in my mind.

With the English Civil War (1642–1651) as my background, I naturally chose to write a forbidden romance featuring star-crossed lovers on either side of the political divide.

In The Cavalier, I've shown two worlds through the eyes of my three male characters: The Puritans with their narrow moral world view and the flamboyant Cavaliers who supported King Charles. My dashing hero, Charles, is a Cavalier engaged in a power struggle with his flamboyant military commander, as well as the narrow-minded Puritan, Silas, who's forcibly wed my heroine, Elizabeth.

I enjoyed playing mind games with Elizabeth. Her former lover, Charles, is besieging her castle but she has no idea of his motives for the bargain he's struck to save her husband's life. Is his night with her to affirm his loyalty - or to have his revenge?

Here’s what some reviewers have to say about the book:

Pages: 73
Series: Bodices and Boudoirs
Reviewer: Icy Snow
Rating: 4 Stars
Eight years before, Elizabeth suffered numerous beatings by her father because she wished to marry Cavalier Charles Threthveyan. At last, when she realizes her suitor has given up and abandoned her, she marries the man her father has chosen, Puritan Silas Drummond, who has long lusted after her, though he’d never admit it. Now, Drummond is besieged by Royalist forces and Elizabeth and her husband are captives of Captain Reynolds, the King’s Man, and his second-in-command, her former suitor.
Striking a bargain with Reynolds to spend the night with both men in return for her husband’s safe release, Elizabeth doesn’t count on the response she has to Charles’ nearness. He swears he still loves her, asking for a charade of seduction to save her honor. Elizabeth agrees but can’t hide her own desire and soon their pretended lust becomes all too real. Or has it? Before his commander, Charles becomes the callous seducer. In private, he’s the protective lover she once knew. Elizabeth has been charged by her husband to poison both Charles and his commander. She goes to an arranged meeting bearing the vial containing the fatal dose, but will she use it on Charles and Reynolds, or on herself? Can she free her husband though it would mean losing forever the man she really loves, or will she once more try to fight for the chance for happiness?
Beverley Oakley has created in The Cavalier a short but intriguing historical piece, giving a great deal of insight into the war in which the Cavaliers and the Puritans participated. Even for such a limited length, the characters are well-delineated, and their aims and desires equally explained. Elizabeth is torn between wanting to believe Charles and keep her original assessment of him intact in spite of how she sees him now conducting himself.
Charles has to redefine his ideas of why Elizabeth jilted him in light of what he was told and what he now learns. The contrasts between the beliefs of the Cavaliers and the Puritans and the war they fought is defined and explained, and Elizabeth’s dilemma in meeting again her lost love, of whether to believe him or accept the public face he shows of the callous libertine is well set up. I’d definitely like to read a longer work by this author.
I picked this one up since I don’t spot many books set in the English Civil War and, given my love for the Chaloner series, I thought it might be interesting to see pre-Restoration Cavaliers from the Puritan viewpoint. This book surprised me by being even more fun than I expected, although it was naturally a little constrained by being so short and yet still having to fit in the requisite amount of sex for the genre. The ‘playacting’ scene when the couple know they are being watched was particularly good with respect to the latter.

With only two days before the end of the year I'm busy making resolutions for 2014 and one of them is to write more English Civil War-set romances.

Have a great New Year's Celebration and wishing you lots of happiness and success in the year ahead.

Twitter @BeverleyOakley


Feeling Dirty?

Post by Lily Harlem

Earlier in the year I was chatting with some other Totally Bound authors about themes that come up in our books. It was late in the evening, we'd all had several glasses of wine, and we moved our conversation from themes to scenes. Yes, many of us are constantly lured toward themes as we write, for me ménage is pretty recurring - YAY - but we realized we also have scenes that keep cropping up, particular places for our characters, gay or straight, two, three or more, to get down and dirty and have hot, sweaty sex.

For me, its the bathroom. Why? Mmm, probably because there are some pretty great elements for sex already there - privacy, nakedness, hot steam, clean, sweet bodies. What is more delicious than a soaking wet man - other than of course, two soaking wet men!!!!!

Oh, okay, here you go...

I cast my mind back through my books, and discovered that in most there is a bath or shower scene where the characters either have sex, or use the soaping of one another's bodies as a prelude to sex. 

To continue the watery theme, here is a little snippet from Escape to the Country, my novella where anything goes...

Tim carried me upstairs, folded a fluffed towel on the corner of the bath and sat me gently down.
“We need to get the chlorine off you,” he said, flicking the shower to life. “Or you’ll itch all night.”
“Mmm.” A late tremble captured my spine. I could still feel the two men inside me, stretching me, still feel their hard bodies pressed against mine. “Thanks,” I said and looked up at Tim.
He stood naked with a hand in the cascading water waiting for it to warm. He grinned. “For what...specifically?”
“For bringing me here, to meet your friends...”
“Is that it? Is that all you want to thank me for?”
I shook my head. “No, thank you for sharing me—the way you used to share Jane.”

“She told you that?” His dark brows twitched.
“Yes.” I felt like I’d said something wrong. “Do you mind?”
He shrugged. “As long as you don’t.”
“No, why should I? It all happened long before you met me.”
He grinned suddenly. “You really are amazing, you know that, Annie.” He grasped my

wrist and pulled me into the streaming water with him. “I have never, ever brought another girl to meet Matt and Jane. I never thought anyone would be as open-minded about sex and pleasure and sharing as they are—as I am when I’m with them—but I just felt that we, me and you, we’re right in so many ways, every other way, except...” He reached for a bottle of coconut shower gel and filled his palm.
“Go on.”
“Except I just thought sometimes, in bed...”
I swallowed tightly. I knew what he was going to say. I’d obviously faked one too many

orgasms lately.
“I felt I wasn’t always getting it right with you, for you.” He rubbed his palms together to create a plethora of white bubbles. Began to stroke his hands over my shoulders and down my arms, filling the steamy air with tropical beaches and Piña Coladas.
“But why did you think that...? Why didn’t you say anything? This is a rather extreme weekend to plan without—”
“Because,” he interrupted “I knew we just needed a bit of tweaking in the bedroom department, a bit of variety, some fun. I’ve always been super confident when it came to fucking, but with you, with you, it’s special.” He cupped my breasts and took their weight in his palms. We both watched the dark areolas pucker as his thumbs dragged across my nipples. “With you, it’s not fucking, it’s making love,” he said in a quiet voice. “With you, it’s too important to make mistakes. I have to get it right, every time. I can’t lose you on a technical hitch.” 

Oh, la, la, it's all fun for Tim and Annie on the weekend retreat to the country.


Miz Love - "Was it well written? Yes, very. Was it hot? Yes, very-very-very. Did it hold my attention? Yes, in a way I never thought possible...the mark of an excellent author...I can honestly say I will never, ever forget this book. Never. Do I recommend it? Good Lord, yes. Yes, yes, yes!"

EFA - "A luscious bed time story and boy is it hot!...If you want a quick, satisfying read with lots of people getting it on, then look no further."

Coreopsis - "This wonderfully written short story has all the right elements a reader comes to expect from a beautiful love story and the talented Ms. Harlem...The sheet action is super hot so don't be surprised when your computer screen melts."

And if you're looking for something Festive to melt your ereader, why not grab a copy of Candy Canes and Coal Dust?

Thanks for stopping by Hitting the Hot Spot and here is wishing you all a very merry Christmas season and all the best for 2014. If you want to check out some Christmas bargains I've got a few offers going on, details on my blog.

Lily x


A tree with a history

I know, it's no longer Christmas. And it's not even a very pretty fake Christmas tree. Just a family thing, that's more about love and fun than about impeccable taste.
My two sons (19 and 23) did the job because I was too busy with getting everything for two days of guests. Or rather, our sons, since they have two mums. A world of ideas and tradition had to change to make us a family according to the law, to make it possible for their parents to get married. We happen to be Dutch, so we are among the extremely lucky ones.

But, other countries have followed and I hope more gay and lesbian couples will see a change for the better in the coming year(s).

No matter who you are, I wish you all the best for 2014!

And just before I forget: I started a Facebook page. It's still a bit empty and very much under (probably permanent) construction, but feel welcome to take a look and like. 



Now There's an Idea I Like!

Now for something completely different


More of what I want…


I’ve always believed that the things we focus on get bigger in our minds.


So this year, I’ve decided to focus on some really cool stuff. I’m gonna forgo the traditional resolutions that I never seem to be able to keep. (Oh, all right, let's be honest, shall we? They're resolutions I don't WANNA keep because they're really no fun!)


Really savoring that exquisite bite of chocolate

Enjoying the sensual taste of a fine glass of wine

Squishing sand between my toes

Seeing a few more sunsets

Basking in a few dozen sunrises

Holding hands

Breathing deep

Staying in bed for a few extra minutes

Leaving the alarm off

Hanging out with friends and family

Reaching out to people, rather than waiting for them to call me

Taking the risk to love more

Being open to new adventures

Feeling the fear and doing it anyway

Trusting my intuition

Remembering that I know what’s best for me

Reading every day

Showering until the hot water runs out

Walking in nature

Going for pedis and massages
Having fun
Perfecting that margarita recipe...
Baking at least one flourless chocolate cake...

Finding more things to celebrate!
Wanna join me? Wanna focus on the stuff we really want to have in our lives? What are you going to focus on? I’d love to share your answers here or on Facebook or twitter @sierrawrites And you can always email me:
Lots of love... Sierra


Merriest Wishes From Nichelle Gregory!

'Tis the season!

It's the season of unexpected joys and usually a fair amount of stress. I hope today you're finally able to take a deep breath and enjoy the upcoming holidays!

So, what are you hoping for?

I'm not talking about the perfect gift. What would make your heart glad?

Grand gestures don't move me half as much as a true expression of love, something I can hold within my heart long after the wrapping paper has been thrown away.

Whatever your wishing for, may you have it and everything you desire in this upcoming year!

I've always been fascinated by myths and legends.
I think some of the most interesting storylines come from these age old stories!
Ashes To Flames was inspired by my interest in the phoenix. Beautiful, mysterious, this creature is a widely recognized symbol around the world. Can you imagine being continually reborn and knowing you must die in flames? According to legend, the phoenix must throw itself onto the pyre! Wow!
~~I hope you enjoy an excerpt from Ashes To Flames!~~

Frustration set Jai on edge. Nothing was making sense and yet somehow he knew he could trust Sabria. She knew things no one could know and there was no discounting the fact she’d told him about her name written in his journal.

“I’m not a psychic,” Sabria said quietly, averting her gaze.


She lifted her chin and something twisted inside Jai’s soul when her extraordinary green eyes met his. “No. I’m your mate.” The golden flecks shimmered again, brighter.

“What the hell are you talking about and what’s up with your eyes?”

“I know how crazy all of this must sound, but you and I have been together for thousands of years. I am like you. I am your best friend, your lover…your kindred mate.”

“Thousands of years?” Jai scoffed. “Okay, now you sound crazy, and I know you’re already aware that I’m engaged to Melanie. She’s about to become my future mate.”

“No.” The ferocity she packed into that one word reverberated inside Jai’s head. “Melanie could never be your mate.”

“She’s agreed otherwise. That’s how it works amongst Homo sapiens when you fall in love.”

“She’s not yours to love.” Tears glistened in Sabria’s eyes. “I am.”

He was moved by the depth of her emotion and pain. “Sabria, I don’t understand any of this

“Kiss me,” Sabria pleaded, moving closer to him. “Just kiss me and I’m sure you’ll understand.”

Jai’s gaze dropped from the tumultuous fire in Sabria’s eyes to the tempting, sensuous slant of her full lips. “I can’t.”

“Please, Jai,” Sabria said, now standing only inches away from him.

Her request was ludicrous, but what was even crazier was the urgent desire to do as she asked.

“Kiss me, Jai.”

The plaintive edge to her voice kicked up his internal temperature. Waves of heat uncoiled within as he reached for Sabria, unable to deny himself the pleasure he knew awaited them both. He grabbed her by the waist before he could further overthink what he wanted and yanked her hard against his body, using more force than he ever would have with Melanie. He wondered if he’d been too rough when Sabria moaned, but then he saw the look of rapture on her face and knew he hadn’t.

“You need my kiss, Sabria?” Jai asked while winding one hand in her silken tresses. He pulled her hair with just enough tension, exposing the elegant column of her neck as he angled her face upwards. Tear-drenched lashes fluttered as she shuddered, drawing him closer.

“Yes, I need it. Please.”

“Shh…” Jai pulled her mouth closer to his. Her beauty and vulnerability made his cock rock hard as he flicked a glance over her heaving chest. He wanted to trace the outline of her full breasts and the nipples he could see through the thin sweater she was wearing. There were probably a hundred reasons he shouldn’t follow through, but at the moment he couldn’t think of a damn one. “You should never have to beg for a kiss, Sabria.”


Copyright © Nichelle Gregory 2013. All Rights Reserved, Total-E-Ntwined Limited,

T/A Totally Bound Publishing.

Ashes To Flames is available with Totally Bound, Amazon, ARE,

and many other e-book retailers!


Christmas is coming

In a few short days, it will be Christmas! Christmas is a time for spending with friends and family. I’m looking forward to it. My favorite holiday traditions is when we gather and sing Christmas carols and share stories of past Christmases. It is a great time and I always after leave with a big smile on my face.

What are some of you favorite family traditions?

Talia Carmichael
Fill Your Cravings




The end of the year is fast approaching and I’m wondering where the year went. :) This time of year is when I like to reflect on what happened this past year. This year has been a busy one for me and I have accomplished my goals that I set for myself. Yay!

I’m looking ahead to my goals for 2014 and some will be the same as this year while others I will be adding. I’m looking forward to a upcoming years of new adventures. :)

Happy Holidays and a prosperous new year. See you in 2014!

Taige Crenshaw
…increasing the sizzle factor
Chat Group:


Life is like a box of...jar of pickled artichoke hearts

I have a new book coming out on Friday, it's not a big thing, just a nice little feel-good story to make you feel all warm inside during the holiday season.  So, I was going to make this post one of those 'BUYMYBOOKIT'SFAB' posts, but as I tried to get back to sleep at 5.30 this morning, Grumpy Author moved in and so this post is something a little different. And, believe me, I am grumpy.

It's a story about a jar of pickled artichoke hearts.

There's an unremarkable little village shop in an unremarkable little village. The village is too far from any big town to be of use to commuters, too far from any pretty places to be of interest to tourists. It's just a village. The village shop is just a shop, there's newspapers, bread,  tins of beans, chocolate bars, pan scourers, and pork scratchings. But...there's also Mrs Packer's Prize Pickled Artichoke Hearts. You see, Mrs Smith, the shop's dogged owner, wanted something a little more interesting in her shop. She went to food fairs, trade shows, read the brochures, tasted the samples. She wanted her customers to enjoy something a little more with their cheese sandwiches, something more than sandwich pickles or mayonnaise or salad cream. She wanted Mrs Packer's Prize Pickled Products sparkling on her shelves. So Mrs Smith, bless her, took a leap in the dark and bought a modest selection in her first brave step to transform her village shop into a special place.

The customers adored the new pickled things. They bought the pickled onions, the sandwich relishes, the gherkins and, occasionally, someone would be terribly daring and buy a jar of pickled artichoke hearts. Mrs Billings, the vicar's wife, remembered having some on holiday in America once and snatched up a jar as a treat for her hubby. Mr Wilson, bored of the usual pickled fare with his evening sandwiches, spent some of his bingo winnings on a jar and that Ms Baxter--her that moved into the Old Dairy and turned it into a design studio--she bought a jar for her housewarming party, for all her trendy London friends.

Mrs Smith was very pleased that Mrs Packer's Prize Pickled Products were doing so well. The pickled onions were particularly popular, the sandwich relishes were a regular feature at the Village Book Club teas and the gherkins were loved by children who had them on their burgers. But, those poor Prize Pickled Artichoke Hearts soon lost their novelty value and Mrs Smith consigned the remaining two jars to the bargain shelves, where they sat with their lurid orange 'reduced price' labels, gathering dust alongside the packets of broken biscuits, out-of-date ketchup and seasonal chocolates.

So, what is the point of this story? Has Meade finally lost her tiny little mind? Well, no. Meade is just using the tale of Mrs Packer's Prize Pickled Artichoke Hearts to point out that sometimes it's good for readers to look past their usual favourites and try something a little different, to take a leap in the dark and try out an author they haven't read before. Go on, take that leap, buy those pickled artichoke hearts and make one of those authors on the shelf in the back of the shop happy. I promise, there are some great writers out there.

Wishing you all a happy holiday season and a prosperous, peaceful new year.





It's Blissemas! Win an eReader or $100 Gift Voucher!

It's that time of year again. I pull out and don my red hat with a white trim because it's the season of giving, loving and fun. Yes, Blissemas is here again and I'm playing Santa Blisse once more!

This year you get to pick your prize an eReader or vouichers to treat yourself to $100 worth of books. Niiice! What do you need to do? Go to and click on all the links there. Leave a comment on each blog and each comment counts as another entry into the contest. The last blog will be up on the 19th December and you have until midnight on the 21st to get all your comments in and the Winner will be announced on the 22nd December.

So don't hang about, get into the Blissemas Spirit and you could win big! There's several other spot prizes available through the Blissemas blogs, check'em all out and be in to win this Blissemas!


Spicy Christmas Excerpt From Tarnished Glitter (Gin & Jazz 3) Now Available for Early Download!

Hello Everyone - I am super excited that Tarnished Glitter, the third book in the Gin & Jazz series is available now for early download. For those of you who were wondering 'WTF?' at the end of Razzle Dazzle (Gin & Jazz 2), now's your chance to find out! I pick up right from where it left off - I'm not that bad of a tease. At least not most of the time. But here's a little sexy snippet from the Christmas scene in Tarnished Glitter. Silent film star, Roman Pasquale, has gone out of his way to provide his sweet young lover Jack with a very special time for their first Christmas together - but Roman definitely is a big tease.

 Jack could barely hold still he was so excited.
“You like it?”
Roman looked up at him, moisture glistening in his eyes. “I have never had anyone bring me gifts with such heart in them as you, Jack. First the book of poetry, and now this. I absolutely adore it.”
Roman leaned the painting against the coffee table in front of him. Then he opened his arms to Jack, and gestured for him to come over. Jack practically threw himself into Roman’s embrace. He sat with Roman on the couch, where they held one another for at least a full minute. Roman nuzzled the side of Jack’s head, placing feathery kisses on and behind his ear, then down the side of his neck. Jack braced himself for the love bites, but they never came. This was a worse torture. It was like the promise of something exquisite if only he could stand high enough on the tips of his toes to grasp it.
Roman reached between Jack’s thighs, and lightly caressed the inside of one satin covered leg, never touching him any higher than a few inches above his knee. Instinctively, Jack thrust forward to get his dick closer to Roman’s fingers that explored too softly, and just out of range.
Jack whimpered. “Please, Roman…”
Still Roman gave Jack no relief. The small teasing caresses only served to frustrate him, and he dripped moisture, more than ready for Roman to continue. Roman stopped, took his hand away and let go of Jack.
“What’s wrong?” Jack was barely able to catch his breath.
“Absolutely nothing, my angel. But after that magnificent present that you gave me, I thought you might like yours.”
“That’s okay, I can wait.”
Roman laughed lightly. But when he spoke, his tone was like velvet. “Why don’t you be a good boy, and put on your smoking jacket. I have your leather slippers here as well.”
“But why…”
“Shhh. You must do as I say first, then you can have whatever you want. Trust me.”
Roman’s darkened gaze affected Jack to his very core. He put the jacket and slippers on. Roman extended his hand, and Jack took it, intertwining his fingers with Roman’s. There was a slight curl of Roman’s lips, and Jack was mesmerised by them. He had the sense in that moment that he would do whatever Roman asked of him.
Pick up your copy now HERE