"A Candle Loses Nothing By Lighting Another Candle" - Father James Keller

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

NNP Days - "Time To Make The Donuts" by Rawiya

Okay, we are four days into NNP Days here on ABA where I am sharing with you the February relases from Naughty Nights Press and hosting a GIVEAWAY.  I don’t know about you, but I see the words lust and donuts in the same sentence and wow, well let’s just say I’m happy. And dare I even need to comment on this yummy cover, or does it speak for itself?

From the lustfully sweet mind of Rawiya, comes the second book in the Something New on the Menu series…Time to make the Donuts.

Purchase your copy of Time to make the Donuts at All Romance Ebooks, Smashwords and Amazon.


Andre, a customer, comes in and pays him a visit. The two lock eyes and immediately connect on a personal level. Because of this, Christopher decides to pursue when Andre passes him his card. He wonders what the young man does for a living however, he’s so smitten by him, Chris doesn’t give it much thought.
Little does the shop owner know, Andre actually works for his biggest competitor as a secret shopper and has been told to use any method necessary to find out the secrets of the shop as well as convince him to sell his shop and become part of the national chain.

When Christopher finds out, he has a surprise for Andre and deals with him in a rather humorous way. Will he trust Andre once he finds out this fact? Will he give up his shop under the pressure the well-known franchise?

Hot Sweet Excerpt
“Yep,” he sighed. “Still, the important thing is to not grow old alone.”
Chris grinned at that last sentence. The man didn’t know how to quit. “I agree and I don’t want to.”
“Me neither.” Within the next few seconds, he finished his sandwich. “Let’s make this happen, Chris.” The personal assistant took Christopher’s free hand and put it up to his lips. “If I’m going too fast let me know, but I really don’t see a reason to slow down.”
The manager drew up his lips before wiping his mouth. His heart thumped in his chest and he sensed his erection stiffening in his trousers. He felt like he should go on and make that next move since Andre had kissed his hand.
With the sound of the waves from the lake in his ears, he inched closer and prepared himself to connect with Andre.
The other man met his gaze and pulled him in by his brown locks. His mouth encompassed Chris’ and their tongues tangled.
Christopher moaned into Andre’s embrace and laid an arm on his broad shoulders. He took another whiff, smelling the man’s distinct cologne. Paco Rabane, his favorite. He’d loved that ardor his whole life. “God, I want you Andre.” Reluctantly, he pulled away for a moment and took a look around them, checking for spies.
Andre’s hand remained entangled in Christopher’s long strands and he curled them around his fingers. “I feel the same. Why did you stop, baby?”
“Well, we are still outside in a public place.” Chris’ appearance turned stoic. He hated that gay men still had to be worried about showing affection while out and about.
“I know, it sucks, but I’ve never really encountered any problems here. I’ll be honest, I wanted to kiss you back at the shop.”
The manager raised an eyebrow. “Really, in front of all those people? I mean, if I weren’t working.”
“Yes, that’s why I didn’t. If we were just in line together I might’ve tried it, even though I’m not that big on showing affection in public, but only because I hate that it causes trouble.” Andre shifted his body to face him. He wrapped his arms around Chris’ waist. “However, I think this is fine. We’re not right around the kids and their parents. We’re away from a crowd of people.”
“True.” Chris leaned in and pressed his lips against Andre’s again.
“Unless you’d like to go someplace a little more private,” he winked and raked Chris’ curls between his fingers.
He settled both arms on Andre’s shoulders. “Maybe not a bad idea, Andre. I’d love to spend more private time with you.” So true, he didn’t think he could hold on any longer.
Even though he rarely went home with a man on the first date, this just seemed like the right thing to do.
Andre is just too irresistible. Why turn a man this hot down flat?

NNP has graciously offered up four different ebooks, so there will be four different winners chosen :) 
How To Enter: Simply comment below with a way to contact you. 
What You Can Win: 4 Winners will be chosen, and each one will get one of the following ebooks: Spontaneous Liaisons Anthology, Hot Shots: Booty Call, Whisper on a Scream, or The Mercies of Cinderella
You have one chance to enter each day Feb 25th - 29th

Monday, February 27, 2012

NNP Days - "Whisper on a Scream" by Cree Walker

Another NNP Day here at ABA.  This is my third day of sharing with you the new February releases from one of my publishers and hosting a GIVEAWAY. Today I have Naughty Nights Press author, Cree Walker. Okay, so you know I’m a paranormal junkie and can’t wait to read this story ;) The cover just draws me right in too. 

If you like your stories to be a mixture of lust, romance and werewolves, then WHISPER ON A SCREAM by Cree Walker is the book for you.

Purchase WHISPER on a SCREAM at Smashwords and All Romance Ebooks.

Whisper on a Scream by Cree Walker


The werewolves are dying. Years of war between the Born werewolves and bitten, along with a lack of healthy bloodlines, has taken its toll on the race and if something isn’t done soon they will all be gone within the next fifty years. They are a strong breed, but they have one major weakness that will probably end them all. Werewolves like their natural counterpart - the wolves breed for life; and if there is no mate, there is no life. A prolonged separation between mates can kill them more efficiently than any bullet ever could, and the Council are playing with fire when they use this very weakness against Sugar Lubec, the Born daughter of two Bitten parents, to carry the off-spring of Alpha Jack Coon. He is the leader of the largest werewolf pack in North America. Ending the war between the two groups is the only thing that can save the werewolves and bring Jack and Sugar together, but can they do it before they end up paying the ultimate price for their long separation; or will that price be the only thing that can end the war?

“Miss Lubec, though Alpha Coon's offer may be tempting, I must keep in mind the bloodlines from which you are descended. Your parents have killed off our race for over thirty years. They left you for dead and you were brought up by the human race. From looking through your records, I have come to the conclusion that you were raised to be a monster and you do it well. You showed signs of aggression at a very early age and showed no hesitation when it came to injuring people. Dangerous enough as a human woman, but a recipe for disaster as a werewolf because that is what you now are. As I see it, Miss Lubec, you are your mother's daughter right down to your good looks and quick wit.” Even though I knew nothing of my family, I now knew enough to know that this was a bad thing.
“But …” the second speaking member continued, “I am not the only member of this Council, and some feel you should be given a chance to thrive in a Pack-related environment, even if it is only an temporary experiment.”
The only person in the line up who looked at me was the woman on the end, Jack's relative. She was my saving grace, but she had a dangerous air about her. They say politics can corrupt an otherwise pure mind, and the longer you are exposed to them the worse it becomes – like standing next to a power plant and letting it turn your brain to cancer.
“Alpha Coon was right to offer the one thing we need, but I am denying you both that right. You will be allowed to live within the Pack for as long as you wish, but you will not be permitted to marry or have children within its ranks.” The woman at the end of the table flinched – as well as a woman of her age and condition could – but quickly covered it. I saw in that moment that she hadn't gotten the job for her lack of backbone or wit, and though she may have seemed decrepit, she was a force to be reckoned with. At the moment, I was just glad she seemed to be on my side.
Jack stood up, knocking his chair to the floor in his rush. “You're condemning her to death!” His features were twisted in hate and rage, as he pointed a finger towards the speaking elder.
I stood up and placed a hand on his extended arm lowering it gently. With it Jack's whole body sagged. It looked like my touch had the same affect on him as his did on me. A warrior's lace; the one thing that can soften a man of war is a woman's lace. A high school English teacher once told me why women like Lady Guinevere and Helen of Troy, though they were not the appointed leaders of their nations, could build them up according to the men they chose to love. The women could also be their death, depending on how the cards fell.
“No Mr. Coon, she will be permitted to marry outside the Pack if she chooses a human companion, but if you decide to once again ignore our commands, you will be punished with a death...hers.” The old man gave a confident nod of his head to signal the meeting's end and the group stood and filed out the way they came in, including the oldest woman, without a second glace in my direction.
Jack dropped his head into his hands when the room was empty. “They are testing my patience.” He voice made my lips curl into a frown. He sounded too confident for a man who feared this group so much.
I stood in back of his chair like a painted doll and stared at the clock...still ticking. Life goes on once again …

NNP has graciously offered up four different ebooks, so there will be four different winners chosen :) 
How To Enter: Simply comment below with a way to contact you. 
What You Can Win: 4 Winners will be chosen, and each one will get one of the following ebooks: Spontaneous Liaisons Anthology, Hot Shots: Booty Call, Whisper on a Scream, or The Mercies of Cinderella
You have one chance to enter each day Feb 25th - 29th

Sunday, February 26, 2012

NNP Days – “Naughty Hot Shots: Booty Call” by Benjamin T. Russell and Michelle Chatton

NNP Days continues here at ABA.  I am spending several days sharing with you the new February releases from one of my publishers and hosting a GIVEAWAY. Today I have Naughty Nights Press authors, Benjamin T. Russell and Michelle Chatton. I really think it is amazing when two authors join their talents together. Let’s see what they’ve come up with :)

Purchase your copy at Smashwords or at All Romance Ebooks.

So what is a strong-willed, Bi-BBW supposed to do when she decides she wants to have a MMF ménage to celebrate her birthday? She makes a Booty Call to her bi-sexual male co-worker and her hot Dom ex-lover.

Victoria Carter has finally broken free from a destructive relationship, now she wants to explore her sensuality and her sexuality to the fullest. Ready to meet the world head on, this is just the beginning of her sexual adventures.

Vicky arched her back and her head lolled to the side. “Winston, ooh baby, I am soooo close. If you keep doing that I am going to come, I am going to come so hard.” She whimpered breathlessly.
Steel vibrated in Winston’s voice. “No, you don’t come until I tell you to.” The touch of menace in his voice sent a furtive thrill to Vicky's moist core and surprisingly, she found the hint of danger in his voice to be arousing.
 “Yes Sir,” she said, assuming the submissive role easily from pure habit.
Vicky let out a long sigh as he slowly pulled his finger from her pussy’s clinging grasp. He stared at his cream covered finger lovingly before he turned his gaze on her and met her eyes directly.
Transfixed, she watched him stick his finger in his mouth and suck off all her cream. A look of crazed lust washed over his face as he tasted her juices and the erotic expression sent undulating ribbons of desire shimming down her spine. She peered at him through hooded eyes as he dipped a finger back inside her. Vicky’s eyelids fluttered and then closed as another wave of pleasure racked her body.
This time, when he withdrew his finger glistening with her dew, he held his hand up to her face. Every cell in her body screamed for her to devour his finger, but she forced herself to wait. He didn’t have to say it, but she wanted him to give her permission to do it. He leveled an icy stare at her and his commanding body language spoke to her heart.
Tonight she wasn’t the hotshot attorney who intimidated weak men with her intelligence, self-confidence and plus sized body. Tonight – in this bed – she wanted to be a desirable and sensuous woman, giving her trust to a real man. If only for one night, she wanted a man like Winston to dominate her and use her as he pleased.
Her eyes were soft, open and begging for his approval. “Please.”
“That’s good baby, you’re learning.” He placed his finger at the opening of her mouth and Vicky smiled when she inhaled her scent. She greedily wrapped her lips around his finger and sucked it clean.
He moved to the end of the bed and dropped to his knees so he could look between her legs. Moisture oozed from her and he froze for a moment as his cock bucked at the sight. He stared at the tantalizing view of her sex, wet with cream. He became enthralled at the promise of emptying the creamy contents of his balls in her, or all over her.
He looked up and captured her eyes. “Vicky, tell me what you want.”
She hesitated for just a moment. “Please.”
“Please what?” The displeasure in his voice was evident.
“Please make me come.”
He smiled. “That’s what I needed to hear.”
Winston began to lick his way up the inside of her legs and made a beeline straight for her beckoning little pussy. Normally, he would have teased her even more, but since today was her birthday and she’d been a good sub up to that point, he decided to give her what she needed.

NNP has graciously offered up four different ebooks, so there will be four different winners chosen :) 
How To Enter: Simply comment below with a way to contact you. 
What You Can Win: 4 Winners will be chosen, and each one will get one of the following ebooks: Spontaneous Liaisons Anthology, Hot Shots: Booty Call, Whisper on a Scream, or The Mercies of Cinderella
You have one chance to enter each day Feb 25th - 29th

Saturday, February 25, 2012

NNP Days - "Seeing Red" by Abby Hayes

Its NNP Days here at ABA. In the next several days I will be posting about Naughty Nights Press’ newest releases for the month of February and hosting a giveaway - so make sure you read to the bottom to find out how to enter to win some great stories from NNP. First up is author, and a special friend of mine, Abby Hayes.

Abby Hayes latest book SEEING RED will have you trembling with anticipation of what will happen next as she weaves a tale of lust, light bdsm, ménage a trois and Valentine’s Day.
SEEING RED by Abby Hayes can only be purchased through Amazon

Three years ago when she opened her bar, Rage on the Water, her boyfriend at the time, a guy she thought she would spend the rest of her life with, dumped her that year on Valentine’s Day. Never a big fan of the holiday before, she now loathes it. Having gone through a bit of a wild phase these past years, she has given up dating altogether. Instead, she’s been exploring her wilder side, one where her kinks and more wanton interests prevail, in her apartment above the bar with a guy friend and at times, others he invites in.
his year on Valentine’s Day though, a conversation with her long time guy friend with benefits, Mark, lands her in a situation beyond any she has experienced before. There will be two men and two women for her to play dominatrix with. While ignoring Mark’s changing intentions toward her, like his invitations to go on an actual date, it being Valentine’s Day, she’s more than a bit excited to spank a few asses.

Tonight Shannon has four bodies to play with, but Mark’s are unnerving her. She goes with each whim of her body and mind, but will they expose her? Will she be able to still play her role well? Or will she give in to all that scares her? With bodies exposed and asses red, it is truly her heart on the line…

“Do your worst, Ms. Shan. Please.” His attempt at forcing his facial muscles to stop the grin was pathetic, and she couldn’t stop her own laugh. Again, the tight cord inside her loosened a touch. She pushed back her shoulders, reached out and unbuttoned and unzipped his jeans. Commando as usual, his cock popped out. To touch it now would give him pleasure, so she decided to withhold her urge to grab it, take it in her mouth and maybe even bite the yummy looking piece of meat. She stepped behind them all again, admired the four bodies a second, then yanked Mark’s jeans down. They bunched up around his thighs, bared his rock hard ass, nice full globes a beautiful shade of red and which were about to become redder. He’d had his breather.
She grabbed the leather paddle, quick to bring it against Mark’s now bare ass. Each smack of leather against skin, each mark it brought out on this un-tanned part of his flesh made her skin tingle. His ass cheeks clenched and relaxed, beyond hot. Not able to help herself, she bent down and bit him, the red skin warm against her lips. He let out a yelp of surprise maybe pain, and she giggled just a touch.
He turned to her, the way his face was scrunched up showing he was ready to play a little whoop ass on her, some fun retribution. They’d done it before, quickly switched roles. Had the situation been different she would have readily flipped the switch tonight too she knew, the mood she was in, up and down and all over the place.
“Thank You Ms. Shan,” he spoke her name through clenched teeth. The dark look behind his eyes, one sexy, one devious, made that invisible cord threaded through her un-wind a bit more, him wanting her. She could be honest enough with herself to know that she wanted that.
“You’re welcome. I can tell by your nicely formed erection, so hard, so red, the veins bulging…” She let the paddle glide over the top of his hard on, watching his red ass clench then. “Hmmm, I can see that you liked every minute of it. I’m all warmed up now and on to the others. Stay erect, and I mean your cock and your back, while I work. Eyes forward please. That means everyone, Scott.”

NNP has graciously offered up four different ebooks, so there will be four different winners chosen :) 
How To Enter: Simply comment below with a way to contact you. 
What You Can Win: 4 Winners will be chosen, and each one will get one of the following ebooks: Spontaneous Liaisons Anthology, Hot Shots: Booty Call, Whisper on a Scream, or The Mercies of Cinderella
You have one chance to enter each day Feb 25th - 29th

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Don't Judge Me!

I say this all the time, there are so many genres because there are so many different types of readers. It would be ridiculous to expect everyone to like what you write, no matter what genre it is. My husband and I, both English teachers (well he teaches and says I retired LOL), don’t read the same stories at all. I read romance in all of it’s forms along with the occasional self-help book, and he reads Holocaust Literature basically whether non-fiction or fiction. He makes comments often about reading my writing, and my answer is why would you? You wouldn't volunteer to read any other romance. And that's fine. 

Yes, I’m making a point here about judging, just give me a few paragraphs to get there LOL I feel I am a romance writer. The majority of my stories falling under the erotic romance category. But my stories verses the mainstream romances on book shelves is really just about the depth of the description, well and in my case overuse of profanity at times. It’s how I stand on my soap box most of the time. I pull out the f-bomb if I see a character judging another. This judging this is the point, but I have another example, or two, first ;) Yeah, I’m wordy!

Within each genre lies differences as well. I love paranormal romances, but not all of them by any means. Use the vampire for example, everyone has an opinion on how one should be. So, I don’t like all vampire stories, but now I do prefer them hot, and I mean sexy hot *winks* What I am getting at though, is that it is the same for the erotic genre. There are so many different types, styles, and heat levels. I myself don’t like to read all of the erotic stories, but I don’t have a problem with them being out there.  What I do have a problem with is two things.

One I hate when it all gets lumped together and judged by people who know nothing about it. The it being erotic or erotic romance. It’s an art form like any other., a form of expression. And two, I don’t like it when people try to draw lines in the sand, saying that this erotic book is okay and this one is not. How can you possibly draw a line? Have I read erotic stories that have offended me – sure, but probably not for the reason you think *giggles*. Will I stop reading the genre, or writing in the genre because of it – NO WAY!

Truthfully, I didn’t set out to write in the erotic genre, well because this small town girl didn’t even know it existed. But when I moved and drove by my first Ellora’s Cave truck, well I looked into it. I saw a submission call, wrote a story unable to sleep one night, had husband read and encourage me to sub it just to see what they would say, and a contract later, I was a paranormal erotic romance writer. And in the last several years have come to appreciate what erotic writing truly is. I’ve met some wonderful people too, but then not all so wonderful…

When I first got published it got real old real fast getting judged not only by complete strangers, the people in the town I live in, acquaintances I no longer talk to, friends I no longer talk to, but even family members I no longer talk to – and I really hate the ones who just think we should be around each other but not speak about what I do for a living.

My point in that rant is that you can’t judge a book by it’s cover, or it’s blurb, or by its keywords for heavens sake. You have to read it. And, if you read it, and you decide you don’t like it – that’s fine, but you don’t have to pull it off the virtual shelves either. Move on. Anyone remember the phrase, To each his own? It is our differences that make the world go round. Erotic Romance, Sexual Preference, Religious Affiliation…When are people going to get it, stop judging and start understanding or at the very least, just let the person and what they like be :( Agree to disagree. It’s funny, it has become a discussion in my home once or twice in how easy it is to form a prejudice against those who are so judgmental, but then that makes you just as bad right? Thing is, they keep throwing their thoughts in my face unasked for, their opinions on what I write. But, I’m not telling them how to live their lives, what job to take, what way to think. Think I’m bad, fine. I don’t need to hear about it, and I deserve the right to continue to do what I do.

I can hear you saying, but none of your books have been removed, you don’t write “that” True, I don’t. But I don’t judge those who do, wouldn’t dare because I know all too well what it feels like. But I know some wonderful authors, have read some wonderful authors, whose books have been removed. And, you start drawing lines in the sand, and it is only a matter of time before you get to me too.  Where does it stop? So, should it really get started?

My Review of Three Little Wonders: An Adoption Story by David H. Burton


Together for ten years, David and his partner made the decision to become dads. Figuring out they wanted to adopt was easy, the waiting and complications along the way were not. Follow their journey as this same-sex couple tried to start their family and prevent three brothers from being separated.

A heart-warming tale of two dads and their Three Little Wonders.

My Review:

This very personal and very detailed story is essentially one about love, all the ways it can be found and shared. To me it seemed a tale of two heroes, a same-sex couple who had enough love between them to shower it on three boys who needed a few heroes in their lives so that they could remain together.

This story shows the in and outs, all the aspects of life, of the law, which go into adoption. Its already a very delicate process, but for a same-sex couple complications can increase. This couple met them all and then some. Which leads me to what I liked most about this story, not just the honesty and the valuable information provided, but how the author included all he has learned from his three little wonders. It provided a great ending to a great story about parenting. Children are gifts, and when looked at that way, our lives can be so greatly enriched by them.  

This story is living proof that families can come in all shapes and sizes in a beautiful and miraculous way. Mr. Burton seems truly like a man who stops to embrace all life hands him and to be grateful for all that is around him as well. In this day and age, this is a story everyone can learn from – I found myself encouraged to be a better parent, a better person after reading it. All that matters in a family is the unconditional love that is at the foundation and everything else just works itself out. The love, the learning, a great life, it goes both ways between parent and child if fostered in just the right way. Thanks for the reminder :) Thanks for sharing.

You can purchase this story now at Amazon and Barnes & Noble!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Naughty After Dark Blog Hop

Hello, and Welcome to ABA!

When considering what to give away for this hop, I let my brain wonder. Dangerous, I know.  Of course, first I thought of the title, and what is my favorite naughty after dark activity to write about. Being a paranormal author my mind went straight to sex magick. And, given we just celebrated Valentine’s Day, I guess I also had holidays on the brain. 

So, for this hop I’m giving away and ebook bundle of stories spanning a few holidays which include sex magick. Sound good? Would it sound better is I picked two winners? Okay, you talked me into it. I am in a celebrating sort of mood I guess.

What You Can Win
eBook Bundle which includes:
Sacred Sex, A Valentine’s Day short story published with Rebel Ink Press
A Strange Freedom: Blood & Fireworks, my 4th of July and Memorial Day Story published with Excessica  
A Wicked & Wanton All Hallows Eve Anthology from Naughty Nights Press which includes my ghostly Halloween story, “Midnight Showing”

How To Enter
All you have to do to enter is be a follower of ABA, and comment below with a way I can contact you if you win. If you want an additional entry, follow my FaceBook Page http://www.facebook.com/pages/Kiki-Howell/22225069684?ref=mf or my Twitter Profile https://twitter.com/#!/KikiHowell, and mention these in your comment as well.  It counts if you are already a follower, so mention if that is the case too.

Book Information

Sacred Sex Blurb:

Just a few days before Valentine’s Day, Margaret visits her aunt’s craft consignment shop hoping for a spell or oil, and any advice on how to re-connect with her husband, Michael, who has become distant since losing his job. Determined to save her marriage, she gets more than she bargained for from Aunt Minny, a practicing witch. Armed with recipes to enhance love,  a massage oil type love potion, a new Valentine’s Day candle and a book on Sacred Sex Rituals, Margaret prepares to seduce her husband.

But, his initial reaction is not what she planned for…

Follow Margaret and Michael on a holiday of love journey, a throwback to the kinky pagan sex rituals once practiced long ago on this day before it was named after a saint.  You may want to take notes to enhance your own Valentine's Day this year!

A Strange Freedom: Blood & Fireworks Blurb:

Can a witch gain her freedom to live as she chooses between Memorial Day and the Fourth of July?  

A man was not exactly what Meranda was looking for when she went to her grandfather’s grave for a ritual of remembrance on Memorial Day.  However, what she thinks is a ghost in the heavy shadows of the night ends up a vampire. 

When Meranda’s grandfather lay dying on a bloody battlefield in WWII, Alexander promised the man he would take care of his family if he got out of the war alive.  Even though he returned to the states a night walker, he has done his best to honor that promise from a distance. 

When Meranda is hurt due to his negligence, Alexander valiantly fights his own desires for her blood to save her.  Only, once she is better, their lives clash.  But, using a little magic, she plans to win their war by the time the fireworks light up the sky on Independence Day.

A Wicked & Wanton All Hallow’s Eve Blurb

A Halloween party turns into a very unusual night; a ghost whose sexual needs prevent her from passing over to the other side; a chance encounter at a mistaken location leads to many desires being fulfilled; and unusual alien and human sexual experience, in the name of research; and so much more in this kinky themed Halloween Anthology.

Open up your mind, free your inhibitions and get ready for A Wicked & Wanton All Hallows Eve!

Eight naughty Halloween-themed erotic short stories to tantalize and tease the senses while giving readers a little taste of the experimental worlds of sensually exciting tricks or treats.

A Midnight Showing”
Two nights before the Halloween opening of her husband's theater, Meredith along with the help of her husband and his best friend slash investor, try to rid the theater of a ghost who made trouble for them when restoring the place. The female spirit, it is rumored, killed herself in the projection room back in the sixties after catching her fiancée at the movies with another woman.
The lonely ghost has other plans for their evening. As the scary movie goes crazy and popcorn goes flying through the air, the lustful spirit coerces man and woman and man into some compromising positions while joining them in the fun.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Guest Post by Cheryl Carvajal, Author in the Death by Chocolate Anthology

Is It Love, or Is It Chocolate?
Today is St. Valentine's Day, the day where tons of people give each other tons of chocolate. It's a great day, truly, both because of the chocolates and because of love. We all know the feeling--that rush of adrenalin, the inability to breathe when the one we love enters the room, the blush, the fears, the hopes, the elation of that new relationship. It's something we search for, something we cling to once we've found it. But how do we fall in love?

He's hot, but is he for real?

For some, it's sheer lust at first sight. Cuteness, nice eyes, even better body, and the list goes on. For others, it's almost gluttony, where you cannot get enough of the person--like a huge box of chocolates you keep pulling the lid off of, until the box is empty. Many people are inspired by status or wealth, choosing partners from the upper class, or those who have expensive cars or lots of money to spend. Even more get that spark from clandestine romances--the danger adds to their feelings, making them mistake them for true love.

But none of that lasts. What happens when we get older and flabbier? What happens when the box of chocolates is empty? When the money is gone and we lose everything, or when money isn't enough? When the affair comes out in the open? Then we find out we weren't nearly so in love as we thought, or weren't in love at all.

You see, love doesn't happen at first sight. Love is something that develops and grows over the long haul, as we see more and more of the people we truly are. In our anthology, this theme comes through as clearly as the delicious taste of chocolate: Kira Saito's heroine Claudia finds her love grows as she learns to know--and trust--the boy from school. In my story Sweet Witchery, Catalena sees all too clearly what love is not, and she must be strong enough to fight for the love she knows is true. In Suz Korb's story, Kate discovers her love is far more than she believed, but that knowledge helps her survive frightening circumstances.

To be true, love shows in action. It's not "in his kiss," but in what he does to protect, defend, and help you. Lucy Swing, Nikki Jefford and Stacey Wallace Benefiel all give us heroines who have to figure out whether their love is villain or hero, finding proof only through supernatural means. Sometimes the one who seems to be the ideal is nothing short of evil, it turns out, and we can't always trust words, or kisses. With time, the truth comes out.

That's perhaps the best lesson there is. Only time can tell us for certain whether love is real and lasting. Lust dissolves into a steady warmth, long and lasting. Instead of gobbling up the chocolates all at once, we eat them bite by tiny bite, savoring everything to the fullest. Our love only grows when we face harsh circumstances, and we find life easier to bear if we are together.

This day will soon be over, but if you eat your chocolates slowly, the box you get will last far longer. And isn't that what it's all about, enjoying your box of chocolates as fully as you can?
Speaking of chocolates, please enter our Death by Chocolate contest! (
U.S. only--sorry if you live somewhere else!) Post a comment to this blog entry telling me your own insights into love and chocolate, and I'll randomly select a name to win a free e-book of Death by Chocolate along with a box of my favorite chocolates.

Delicious chocolates... and even more delicious reading! It doesn't get any better than this!

All images are from  Simon Howden /FreeDigitalPhotos.net 

Death by Chocolate- The paranormal young adult anthology with a cocoa twist.

Back in Time by Stacey Wallace Benefiel

Nothing in Aurelia Lemon's life is turning out how she'd planned. She's unemployed, unattached, and her family bakery is on the verge of closing. To make matters worse, the guy she dumped in high school is doing well and getting rich off of one of her departed mother's recipes. It would take a miracle to right everything she's done wrong. Or maybe just a phone call and the chance to go Back in Time. 

Sweet Witchery by Cheryl J. Carvajal

Catalena is only one of many dreamers in a small medieval town in Romania. When the witch Ramnusia opens her chocolate shoppe, suddenly dreams turn into reality. The chocolates are divine, but their power is greater than their sweetness. Miracles abound, dreams come true, and Ramnusia's magic confections become the talk of the town. But if these chocolates can make dreams come true, will they win for Catalena the deepest dream of her heart? 

Spellbound by Nikki Jefford

Two months after dying, Graylee Perez wakes up in her identical twin sister, Charlene’s body.

As the daughter of a witch, can anyone blame her mother for attempting to bring her back to life? Only now Gray’s stuck sharing her sister’s body 50/50 in 24 hour shifts.

The race is on for Gray to find a way back into her body before Charlene purges her from existence.

Warlock Raj McKenna is rumored to meddle in the black arts, not to mention he’s after Gray’s invisibility spell and worse – her heart. But Raj might be the only one powerful enough to save Gray from fading away forever. 

Bloody Valentine by Lucy Swing

One by one the girls of Hollow High disappear and when Bailey receives a heart-shaped box filled with chocolates she might be next.

Sweet Torture by Kira Saito

Sixteen year old Claudia Bernstein is obsessed with two things: chocolate and Dante Torres. However, being an invisible minion to Upper East Side princess Beatrice Wildenbert isn't helping her get anywhere with her dream guy.

Everything changes over Christmas break when Dante actually starts noticing her.

But are Dante's intentions as pure as they seem? When Claudia finds herself in the middle of a cruel prank, she decides to take revenge. But is revenge enough? Or will she finally realize that her own worst enemy is herself?

The Girl with Three Heads by Suz Korb

Kate wakes up on the morning of the Death by Chocolate fundraiser event to discover she has two extra heads resting upon each of her shoulders. She is not pleased about this. She's even more displeased when she discovers the head on her right shoulder (which looks like Santa Claus, complete with fluffy white beard) is actually Zeus, lord of lightning, or something like that. The head on her left shoulder? Yeah, it's the head of Hera; goddess-of-looking-like-a-blonde-bombshell and getting on Kate's nerves by shouting in her ear all the time.

Will Kate ever rid herself of these two extra heads? Will she ever get to experience an actual kiss from a boy without extra-head-situation interruptions? Join Kate as she struggles to survive being flung into the Underworld, as well as eventually landing upon
Mount Olympus.

Just because she's got two extra craniums doesn't mean either head is an extra set of useful brains.

Author Bios

Stacey Wallace Benefiel is the author of the Zellie Wells trilogy, the Day of Sacrifice series and The Toilet Business, a collection of essays. She lives in an orange house in Beaverton, OR with her husband and their two young children. For more information about Stacey and her other works, please visit her website: http://staceywallacebenefiel.com

Cheryl Carvajal goes by the name Shakespeare at her two blogs: http://creativeartsanonymous.blogspot.com/ and http://notwritinganythinganymore.blogspot.com/ You can also contact her by email at shakespeare824@hotmail.com Over the last decade she has ventured into YA writing. She has three degrees in English, teaches Zumba and works on her writing with help from her husband who is president of Bainbridge College, Georgia.

Nikki Jefford is a third generation Alaskan now residing in the not-so-tropical San Juan Islands with her husband, Sébastien, and their Westie, Cosmo. She is the author of Entangled. Visit Nikki at www.nikkijefford.blogspot.com

Lucy Swing is a mother of two and a wife to a Firefighter/Paramedic. She is the author of the upcoming paranormal YA romance novel "Feathermore". She is a Goodreads author and you can find out more about her writing endeavours on her website http://www.LucySwing.com

Kira is a magic junkie and loves writing YA paranormal romances. Some of her heroes include: Jack the Pumpkin King, Willy Wonka, Larry David, Princess Jasmine, the vampire Lestat, Andy and her Maltese Costanza. You can email her at kirakatwritingservices@gmail.com and you can find out more about Kira on her website http://kirasaito.blogspot.com/

Suz Korb loves comedy. She also loves magic. She loves, loves to inject these key elements into her paranormal stories. She also loves, loves, loves cereal and eats way too much of it whilst novel writing. She’s an expat of the USA now living in England, a mother of two and the author of The Bedeviled Trilogy. To find out more about Suz Korb’s books visit her website at www.suzkorb.com

Monday, February 13, 2012

Things You Need For A Night of Love and Magick

Well, it’s February, and with Valentine’s Day soon approaching, visions of love come to mind…and as I have written two magical Valentine’s Day stories this year, I was thinking more along the lines of love spells! I do a lot of research into pagan, Wiccan and paranormal magick, always on the lookout for some new spell or ritual to spark my imagination and a new story. So here is a list of a few things one could use for a love spell, or just to set the mood for a very romantic evening.

1)Quiet space. You need to be able to clear your mind, center yourself, feel the energy of the earth and focus on what your intention is for the spell, or just focus solely on the one you love.

2)Candles. Candles are used not only to represent the element of fire, but since they come in many colors they also have color correspondences.  Red, pink or white could be used now, representing passion, desire, harmony, friendship, romance, sex, enlightenment and connection. Sometimes witches cut words representing the intention of their spell into the candles, like the word passion or the name of the one they love, and the candle has to burn all the way down for the spell to be complete.

3)Crystals and stones. Just like the candles, each represent different things.  Rose Quartz is the gemstone of love which also grants feelings of self-worth and inner peace to help love stay strong.

4)Oils or Incense. These would again each have their significance. Ylang Ylang encourages intimate feelings, and works well with either sandlewood which is an aphrodisiac for me or rose and jasmine which are alluring to women. Look online for recipes to add these scents to carrier oils and use them for a loving massage.

5)Flowers and Foods. Flowers and foods are the same way, having meaning, each of these things all accentuating the main intention of the spell.  Obviously roses are a Valentine’s Day favorite. But, what about the foods? In Sacred Sex, Meredith made for Michael steamed asparagus with lemon for increased hormone production and literal zest as well as crab for sexual energy.  For dessert she made passion fruit salad with a sauce of orange for love, ginger for energy and honey for sweetness.

Now, if one were doing a spell, an alter, cauldron, wand an such would be used. But, most importantly, a spell must have a very clear and very specific intention. The more the witch can see what he or she wants in their mind, the better chance the spell has of working.  I would venture to say though that this could be true of any date. Yes spontaneity can be the spice of life, but there is also something to be said about taking the time to plan an evening for the one you love.

And, speaking of spells and love, I have two stories involving sex, love and magick this Valentine’s Day.

Sacred Sex Blurb:
Just a few days before Valentine’s Day, Margaret visits her aunt’s craft consignment shop hoping for a spell or oil, and any advice on how to re-connect with her husband, Michael, who has become distant since losing his job. Determined to save her marriage, she gets more than she bargained for from Aunt Minny, a practicing witch. Armed with recipes to enhance love,  a massage oil type love potion, a new Valentine’s Day candle and a book on Sacred Sex Rituals, Margaret prepares to seduce her husband.

But, his initial reaction is not what she planned for…

Follow Margaret and Michael on a holiday of love journey, a throwback to the kinky pagan sex rituals once practiced long ago on this day before it was named after a saint.  You may want to take notes to enhance your own Valentine's Day this year!

Love, Creativity & Magick, A Steampunk Valentine’s Day Tale  Blurb:
All acts of magick take on shades of gray in the end, especially for Emma, one of four females witches who by birthright belong in the social circles of the privileged upper ten thousand in London. Yet, by rumor of the unknown and the misunderstood, she stands apart, cut by her peers along with her cousins, because they hold a secret—each is gifted with magick.

Their elders had taught them respect for their powers even when mixed with a spanking amount of fanciful mischief. On the other hand, if a lesson was warranted, then white verses black magick could be hard to define. Nowhere was the color of steam more evident than in the matters of justice, a slippery term to define. Yet, they’d made breaking the laws of society their mission. Most of their nights at parties and balls were spent creating a magickal comedy of errors, helping the uptight aristocracy side step their fastidious standards.

Only this year, days before Valentine’s Day, a damnable day for women without suitors, Emma is not quite sure what is happening to her. Something dark and seductive, something not of this world, is luring her, possessing her, and she has no comprehension of what or who the presence really is. But, when he does show his face finally, and she feels him to be a nightwalker, she must fear not only the threat he poses to her blood and to the energy or magick he can suck from her, but also the danger he poses to her heart. After all of these days feeling him, wanting him, she has to wonder if her feelings are just a matter of his compulsion, if she is under this vampire's own type of magick.

To complicate matters further, the vampire’s propositions are as exciting as they are scandalous, to teach her how to power her magick with the overabundance of sexual energy she bears. But, how he knows such things he remains elusive about. And there is the added attraction that this vampire was a failed inventor in life, one with a basement full of contraptions she finds she can power through the use of her sexual energy. Valentine’s Day seems like it could be all kinds of fun this year now.

Yet, in these days of social unrest and out-of-control creativity, what is a witch to do with a vampire? When Valentine’s Day rolls around, and a secret is revealed, what will be left for her?

Kiki Howell
~where love is a mystical thing~

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Adult Only! A Steampunk Big Bliss Kiss for Valentine’s Day – Kiki Howell

I’m participating in the BIG Blisse Kiss! It’s the first super snogtastic sunday were those who stop at the blogs involved can enjoy Kisse Exceprts, Prizes and More. Keep checking the site, http://blissekiss.co.uk/, out throughout the day for links to more Kisses.

My Steampunk Kiss between a Vampire and a Witch from Love, Creativity and Magick: A Steampunk Valentine's Day Tale:

“Yes,” the word came out in a rush of breath before her mind could even process all he had offered her, what it meant to agree. With one word she had unleashed this monster upon her body. Of this she was well aware, anxious and excited, rather than scared. The only thing, which truly disquieted her was the absolute discrepancy of the matter.

Before she could even brace herself for his next move, now that he had her permission to do whatever he wished, her clothing fell in shreds at her feet, and she stood naked before him. Looking down, lace, silk, corset, everything laid in a puddle about her feet. The puddle could not be a truer statement since her gown, though fortunately not one of her favorites, had been an aquamarine blue. Her tiny slippers were even covered by the pile of once fine linens. The beige inexpressibles in strips looked like the foam upon the sea.

The dress had been a gift from her mother. What explanation would she have for the shape it was in now? She couldn’t worry upon it now. The cut of the thing had exposed her breasts a little more than even she had been comfortable with just hours ago.

In this moment, they stood out proud, her nipples hard. The rush of heat through her body had her look away from his gaze down at the floor again.

“Emma, don’t look away. You are so perfect, so beautiful.”

Her nerve endings, every single one it felt, came alive, like they were exposed as well, making her skin throb in want of touch, the all-consuming brand of a perilous want indulged. Even with all she’d been told, at the end of her seasons still unmatched for marriage, she was an innocent. That was about to change. She welcomed being made a woman.

Emma found herself being lifted by powerful hands before her body was draped over a chair in front of the fire. One leg he caught with his hand, making it fall toward the floor, spreading her thighs open in invitation to his whims. Wanton, she felt no anxiety, no threat of remorse. Oddly unshaken by this change of events, she laid perfectly still, perfectly exposed. Instead her body pulsed in need of this man’s, this vampire’s touch.

As if he could read her thoughts, and what did she know of his kind really but rumors, warnings to stay away, maybe like they claimed, he could. His fingers brushed over her skin with a powerful lightness. The chill of his flesh juxtaposed with the heat coming from the flames in the fireplace. His kiss stifled her cry, but not the shudder of her limps.

She felt his garments move over her exposed flesh one second, then the next, his lips brushed hers, a gentle caress of skin against skin as if she were a china doll he could easily break. Maybe he could. She had heard talk of their strength, beyond that of any human. With his hands braced on the chair on either side of her, his mouth traveled, a light kiss on her chin, a nibble without fangs on her neck, the draw of his tongue over the skin above her breasts. Her tight nipples rose up to meet him as she fought for breath.

For more information on Love, Creativity & Magick, A Steampunk Valentine’s Day Tale go to http://www.kikihowell.com/2011/12/love-creativity-magick-steampunk.html

My Prize:

A PDF copy of my other Valentine’s Day release, Sacred Sex. Just comment below to enter. Please leave me a way to get in contact with you if you win.

Sacred Sex Blurb:
Just a few days before Valentine’s Day, Margaret visits her aunt’s craft consignment shop hoping for a spell or oil, and any advice on how to re-connect with her husband, Michael, who has become distant since losing his job. Determined to save her marriage, she gets more than she bargained for from Aunt Minny, a practicing witch. Armed with recipes to enhance love,  a massage oil type love potion, a new Valentine’s Day candle and a book on Sacred Sex Rituals, Margaret prepares to seduce her husband.

But, his initial reaction is not what she planned for…

Follow Margaret and Michael on a holiday of love journey, a throwback to the kinky pagan sex rituals once practiced long ago on this day before it was named after a saint.  You may want to take notes to enhance your own Valentine's Day this year!

In accordance with the new FTC Guidelines for blogging and endorsements, Kiki Howell of An Author's Musings, would like to advise that in addition to purchasing my own books to review, I also receive books, and/or promotional materials, free of charge in return for an honest review, as do any guest reviewers.