Friday, February 28, 2014

The Muse Unexpected Blog Tour

Muse tour

Muse UnexpectedMuse Unexpected
by V.C. Birlidis

"We're Muses. Not vampires, not fairies, not werewolves. We're Muses."

Sophie was sure her mother had reached an epic level of crazy. ‘We're Muses?' She thought Muses were lame, not to mention she found the idea ridiculous. However, Sophie couldn't explain away her physical transformation that made Anne Hathaway in The Princess Diaries look like a bad Walmart make-over, not to mention why her mood swings triggered an uncontrollable ability to shoot powerful bursts of energy out of her hands. Sophie soon realizes modern day Muses have evolved into powerful guardians of humankind, tasked with keeping mortals on the right path and the original Olympians locked away from the world. But old hatreds don't die easily, especially for immortal enemies that have an eternity to plot and gather their forces. Well aware of the Fates' foretelling of another Olympian war, and a young Muse that would rise up as a warrior and defeat them, the Olympians have vowed to either possess Sophie or destroy her. Either way, they will make sure everyone associated with their imprisonment will reap an eternal damnation in the Underworld, leaving the Olympians to restore Mount Olympus and force humankind into a future of never-ending servitude and misery.




Praise for Muse Unexpected

 "Ripe with conflict, skin-crawling creepy that is sprinkled with a wonderful sense of humor and a plot fraught with horrific danger in every step taken by Sophie, this book should be on the top of everyone's must read list. Simply put, I loved it and can't wait for book 2 to come out." ~Olive (Amazon Review)

"I remember learning about mythology & Greek gods in elementary school....boring! Well, this fantastic book takes everything you thought about gods/mythology and turns it on it's ear, sort of like "Wicked" did to the "Wizard of OZ". At times funny at times gruesome and scary, this story definitely kept my interest. I loved the way the writer made the gods "human". I also liked the subtle, blink and you'll miss them hints sprinkled throughout the story. Don't let the young adult genre scare you away. This is an engaging story that can be enjoyed by all. Can't wait for the next one!!!!" ~Paula (Amazon Review)

Author V.C. Birlidis V.C. Birlidis was born and raised in Miami, Florida and has always been involved in the arts. He attended the New World School of the Arts and was a member of The Miami Ballet. Mr. Birlidis moved to Ohio to attend college where he earned his Bachelor's degree in marketing and communications from Capital University. He currently is the Director of Marketing at one of the top midwest advertising agencies, SBC Advertising. He has freelanced as a writer for Outlook News and Tickled Pink Magazine, where he wrote a comical advice column named Ask V. Five years in the making and inspired by the numerous Greek myths his father would utilize as demented bed time stories, Muse, Unexpected is Mr. Birlidis' first novel. It is the first book in his Muse series.



Excerpt:

“Mom, step away from the mirror. Let me see what has happened to me.”

“But I need to explain first. It’s like this, some people may have a few additional doors open and because of those open doors, they have some extra abilities like being able to tell the future or being able to speak with the dead. Now, beings like us have the majority of our doors opened and our soul is expanded to allow us to do the things we can do. Otherwise, our soul would be ripped to shreds.”

Sophie’s arms shook; a searing heat building inside her as crackling electricity filled the air. “What has happened to me, Mom? I need to see.” She lifted her head; her eye’s meeting her mother’s. The heat was almost unbearable, burning in her eyes and moving toward her clenched fists. Her hands tingled and burned. She was sure they were going to explode.

Callie held firm. “Honey, calm down. You don’t have control of your emotions. It’s always difficult at first, but—”

Sophie was furious and she let whatever control she had slip away. Her eyes were burning through her mother, in an attempt to reach the covered mirror.

With a steady voice, Sophie said, “Let me see.” She shook her hands, in an attempt to shake off the heat pooling in them. Instead of feeling relief, the energy surged from her.

Callie threw herself out of the way, falling forward onto the floor as the energy burst hit the mirror, ripping the heavy curtains and massive iron rods off the wall and cracking the mirror from top to bottom. Sharp pieces of mirror rained down, as both women crashed to the floor.

“Ow!” The slivers of mirror glass sliced her palms. She grew silent watching the mirror-shards pushing themselves out of her skin. The cuts bled a little then stopped bleeding and healed before her eyes. She stood, afraid to move, trying to get her mind around what she was seeing.

“What the heck is wrong with me?” Sophie said, as she burst into tears.

Although a good portion of the mirror was destroyed, Sophie could still make out most of her reflection. She lifted her right hand and touched her face, realizing she was staring back at the girl from her nightmare. It was the girl who had pushed her into the grave.

This is more than just a little liposuction or a hair straightening. Am I a victim of an alien attack? Was this the work of body snatchers? 


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Thursday, February 27, 2014

From Gods by Mary Ting Book Blast & Giveaway

From Gods NewFrom Gods 
by Mary Ting

Did you just see a flash of lightning across the sky on a clear sunny day? Don't blame Mother Nature. Skylar Rome should have been having the best summer ever, before heading off to college. Suddenly her whole life changes while visiting her cousin, and meeting the Grand brothers; Mason, in particular. Though she's sure he is someone she should stay away from, the attraction was undeniable. Strange things begin to happen, throwing Skylar's life into turmoil. Implausibly, she gets caught up in a world where the descendants of ancient gods have super powers, and evil beings are after her. Not only are her discoveries difficult to accept, but now she is running out of time and running for her life, while trying to unravel the mystery of what they want from her. Forced into a battle set into motion long before she was born, will Skylar find the answers she seeks, or will she die trying?


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Praise for From Gods
“A fast paced adventure full of mystery, action, magic and romance! Readers won’t be able to put this book down!” ~InD’tale Magazine  

“From Gods takes mythology to a whole new level of imagination with its incredible plot and amazing characters. It’s full of hotness that you never want to end!” ~Michele, Insane About Books  

“From Gods by the AMAZING AUTHOR Mary Ting is OMGods good!! If you even LIKE Greek Mythology, set aside some time because you will DEVOUR Mary Ting's Demi Gods and Vultures!!!” ~Mindy, Books Complete Me  

“This book is “electric” as it blends paranormal romance, mythology (which I love), action and suspense together for an amazing read. Mary Ting, you’ve done it again! This book exceeded my expectations and I was literally blown away as if I were struck by lightning!” ~Vanessa, Fairiechick’s Fantasy Book Reader


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From Gods Poster



mary tingAuthor Mary Ting Bestselling/award-winning author Mary Ting resides in Southern California with her husband and two children. She enjoys oil painting and making jewelry. Writing her first novel, Crossroads Saga, happened by chance. It was a way to grieve the death of her beloved grandmother, and inspired by a dream she once had as a young girl. When she started reading new adult novels, she fell in love with the genre. It was the reason she had to write one-Something Great. Why the pen name, M Clarke? She tours with Magic Johnson Foundation to promote literacy and her children's chapter book-No Bullies Allowed.  
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BookBlast Giveaway $50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Ends 3/23/14 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The Shadow Soul Book Blitz & Giveaway!


The Shadow Soul (A Dance of Dragons, #1)
Release Date: 02/20/14

Release Date:
GAME OF THRONES meets GRACELING in a new fantasy series by bestselling author Kaitlyn Davis.

Jinji has been haunted by the death of her twin brother for ten years. Now, on the dawn of her joining, the nightmare that claimed him has returned for her.

Prince Whylrhen is determined to prevent the past from repeating itself. His kingdom is expecting a new heir, and he will stop at nothing to keep the child safe.

Though they've never met, the two share a deep secret—magic. Jinji can weave the elements to create master illusions and Whylrhen can pull burning flames into his flesh. But neither of them knows what they are truly capable of until a chance encounter brings them together. For their story has played out before, in a long forgotten time—an age of myth that is about to be reborn…

**On-Sale February 20th, 2014!**

About the Author
I've always been a writer. I grew up duct taping my novels together, started writing complete manuscripts in high school and studied creative writing at Johns Hopkins University. Upon graduating, I decided it was finally time to actually give my dream career a chance. So, of course, I started writing a young adult paranormal romance series -- and no, I'm not jumping on the bandwagon. I've been a true paranormal supporter for my entire life! I blame my obsession almost completely on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, my all-time favorite television show. And, before you ask: Yes, I own every season... even the post WB ones! I especially challenge anyone to watch the first three seasons and not fall in love with Angel, securing a lifelong love of vampires! Other culprits of my paranormal obsession are some of my favorite authors: JK Rowling, Raymond Feist, Meg Cabot, Richelle Mead, Lynne Ewing and Tamora Pierce.

Author Links:
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GIVEAWAY:
2 print copies of The Shadow Soul (US only)
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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

That one summer Book Tour & Review February 25 YA bound



That One Summer (Summer #3)


Release Date: 12/17/13

 

Summary from Goodreads:

Loving Chris Henderson would be wrong. Diabolically disastrous. I mean, what is there about him to love? He’s moody, bossy, brooding, a control freak, and that’s on a good day … but there was one achingly obvious fact that haunted my every thought, every minute of every day …

He sure could kiss.

As the countdown to the new millennium begins, there is one thing everyone agrees on: no one wants to be in Onslow for New Year’s Eve.

So that can only mean one thing: road trip!

No longer the mousey, invisible, shy girl from years ago, Tammy Maskala is finally making up for all those lost summers. A new year with new friends, which astoundingly includes the bossy boy behind the bar, Chris Henderson.

She likes her new friends (at least most of them), so why does she secretly feel so out of place?

After chickening out on the trip, a last-minute change of heart sees Tammy racing to the Onslow Hotel, fearing she’s missed her chance for a ride. The last thing she expected to meet was a less-than-happy Onslow Boy leaning against his black panel van.

Now the countdown begins to reach the others at Point Shank before the party is over and the new year has begun. Alone in a car with only the infuriating Chris Henderson, Tammy can’t help but feel this is a disastrous start to what could have been a great adventure. But when the awkward road trip takes an unexpected turn, Tammy soon discovers that the way her traitorous heart feels about Chris is the biggest disaster of all.

Fogged up windows, moonlight swimming, bad karaoke and unearthed secrets; after this one summer nothing will ever be the same again.

 


 

Goodreads links for series:
The Boys of Summer
An Endless Summer
Ringer
Forever Summer
 

(Buy links for all books in this series are in the following link.  Figured that was easier than adding like 20 links J)

Summer Series purchase links and newsletter subscription: Summer Series for Purchase Link

 

(Author would like you to add the following pre-order links in your post please)

Ringer: Pre Order ITunes Ringer Book Pre-Order

Forever Summer: Pre Order Itunes Forever Book Pre-Order

 


Jennifer's Review:

 CJ Duggan's series starts off with Book #1 -- The Boys of Summer.. set in the 1990s. Now two books later, with That One Summer I am still loving this series! Fun, sexy easy read that leaves wanting to know more about every character. All three books are companion novels (at first I resisted the whole companion novel thing but I really like it now) so we still get to be a part of the characters we meet in books 1 and 2. In this book we finally focus on Chris, the brooding always serious bartender and now co-owner of the Onslow hotel. I was pretty excited that CJ finally gave him a story because I had been wondering since Book #1 what exactly his story was!

This book is set in the last days of 1999 ---so 4 years after we were first introduced to the Onslow Boys and directly after the events of An Endless Summer. I loved being transported back in time and witness the countdown to the new millennia with these characters. I totally remember the countdown to the new millennia and while I was in New York City celebrating I am glad I got to be this road trip with the Onslow Boys to count down to 2000! CJ brought all the characters back together again for this book which was great -- and they had their own subplots --which gave us all a taste of what was happening to the couples we came to love in the previous books. . And she still keep the secondary stories goings -- Tess and Toby's might give you some anxiety though :-) 

So in this book we head out on a camping road trip organized by the boys to celebrate the millennia. We meet a new character, Tammy Maskala -- friends with Amy in high school. Tammy is stuck with the brooding Chris Henderson for the road trip. Her sarcastic voice had me in stitches countless times and her wit made her a very likeable protagonist. Tammy analyzed everything but it worked for her character and the relationship she was having wit the ever hard to figure out - Chris Henderson. My only issue with Tammy was that she was a tad too sensitive.

Chris Henderson.  He was tough to figure out. Constantly in a bad mood or something:-) Very serious but deep down we saw that there was a funny side to him! But what was really important is that like the rest of the Onslow boys so far have showed us is that he is a truly caring guy that looks after those around him. They give their whole heart to those they love. Just like you feel for Toby in The Boys of Summer, you will love Chris in That One Summer.  Dare I say you might like him more than Toby :-) I think I might :-)

 This is that one summer you won’t want to miss – sexy, fun and sweet!


About the Author

C.J Duggan is a Number One Best Selling Australian Author who lives with her husband in a rural border town of New South Wales, Australia. When she isn’t writing books about swoony boys and 90’s pop culture you will find her renovating her hundred-year-old Victorian homestead or annoying her local travel agent for a quote to escape the chaos.

 

The Boys of Summer is Book One in her highly successful Mature Young Adult Romance Series.


Author Links:






 

***GIVEAWAY***

1 winner will get ebooks of Book 1-3 of the Summer series (INT)

 

 RULES AND RESTRICTIONS: 

Contest is void where prohibited. Entrants must be 13 or else have parent or guardian’s permission to enter. Winners will be notified via email and will have 48 hours to respond  or another winner’s name will be selected. Winning entries will be verified for authenticity.

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Monday, February 24, 2014

Falling for STAR-CROSSED!

Are you watching Star-crossed? Because if you aren't you are REALLY missing out. This show is fantastic! One episode in and it's everything I hoped it would be. And let me tell you, if you follow this blog at all, you KNOW how much I love my aliens! Seriously, alien junkie here and I ain't afraid to admit it. I may even start a support group for those who dream of getting beamed up by a dreamy hunk of an alien. Okay, I kid....well maybe not. But anyway, THIS show. Just....yeah.





So the gist of the story is that Roman and his kind crash landed on Earth ten years ago to a not so friendly welcome. For a short time Emery hid Roman in her garage and fed him, took care of him, and did things six-year-olds do together. Basically she showed him kindness in a world that terrified him. Of course he was found and, so she thought, killed. But he turns up ten years later when his kind is integrated into society via Emery's high school. And that's where the story for these two begins.

I have to admit, watching the previews I was excited but worried that the character of Emery came off a little bland. But good news is, I loved her! The previews definitely didn't do her character justice because Aimee Teegarden does a fabulous job. And what can I say, I absolutely adore Matt Lanter. He knows how to play the heart throb, and honestly he and his wife are so darn cute, how can you NOT just love him? 

If you haven't checked this show out yet, do it TONIGHT! If you love aliens, you will adore Star-Crossed. Rather than give you every detail that makes it so great (seriously, just watch it), I am sharing a gif timeline of my reactions to the pilot. Enjoy! (And GO WATCH! NOW!)


When six year old Emery helps Roman.
(Awwwwwwww. Seriously when will adults start learning from kids?)





Ten years later when Roman starts his first day of high school.
(Hey Hot Alien! I'm over HERE! Aliens rule!)





Then some school stuff and Emery/Roman interactions





Followed by some other stuff




Then Roman's gift to Emery





And finally
THAT ENDING!




So if you love all things aliens, or forbidden love, or just fun high school romance, go watch this show. It's got drama, action, fun, and of course, that heart-warming first love stuff. 

It's on the CW Monday nights at 8PM EST. 

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Feature & Follow Friday...Don't Cry!









Check out Parajunkee & Alison Can Read for more information on this Friday blog hop and to sign up and join the fun.



This week a question.
What was the last book that made you cry?

Breaking the Reins
by Juliana Haygert



If you haven't read this one, you can read my review HERE. It's a fantastic read!

Happy Friday!

Paris Cravings by Kimberly Montpetit Book Blast & Giveaway

 
Paris CravingsParis Cravings

Can life really turn on a dime, a missed bus— or a stuck pastry shop door?

Chloe Dillard’s life has always been complicated. Her mother is a neurotic romance novelist and her boyfriend, Mathew, has been pressuring her to go “all the way”. But after The Worst Night of Her Life, Chloe escapes on her Senior Class trip to the swoon-worthy city of Paris which takes her mind off her troubles—temporarily. On the final leg of her dream trip, Chloe squeezes in one final run for a last-minute box of decadent pastries. Add a stuck door, subtract a broken four-inch heel from her cute strappy sandals, and Chloe ends up one stuck girl on the bakery shop floor with a sprained ankle. Rescued by the shop owner’s dreamy son with chocolate-syrup eyes, the beautiful city of Paris suddenly becomes Chloe’s personal secret adventure. And even though Jean-Paul, the oh-so-kind La Patisserie shop boy is the gentlemanly guy Chloe has always dreamed of, even he has a girlfriend. The police are tracking her down as a run-away, Mom’s having a nervous breakdown over her daughter’s “disappearance”, and Chloe’s just trying to have a Happily-Ever-After even as her dreams with Matt are swirling down the drain. Could being lost in the city of Paris be just what the doctor ordered? What’s a girl to do in the most romantic city in the world?





Praise for Paris Cravings:

 "PARIS CRAVINGS is such a fun read, I couldn't put it down! This is a humorous, delicious, and dreamy romance set in Paris about pastries, growing up, dating, and making those hard decisions about the kind of guy you want to be with, and who is best for you." ~Milyssa Rivera

"Who can resist a book set in Paris amidst a Patisserie shop full of eclairs and pastries?! I'm excited this is a series, because anything with a bakery involved and I am in! Paris Cravings started out with a girl, a big box, some high heels and a mishap with a door. Insert cute worker with Hershey brown eyes, a French accent and a missing passport and you have the beginnings of romance." ~Fire & Ice Blogger


Excerpt:
Dear Diary: I have a confession to make: I’ve become a total idiot over French pastries. They’re my new favorite food. My new-found edible souvenir. My new favorite sin. Drizzled chocolate, sugar-dusted raspberries, flaky crusts with perfect crimped edges. I’ll have to run a marathon when I get back home to New York just to burn off my new five pounds. French beignets are the worst temptation. Those yeasty chocolate-filled pastries call to me the way Prada handbags call to my mother from Fifth Avenue. Dunkin Donuts—so yesterday. Climbing the Eiffel tower, running through miles of hallways at the Louvre Museum, gourmet lunches on the Seine River . . . yes, those are all must-sees . . . if you don’t mind vertigo-dizzying heights and enough paintings to saturate your brain for the rest of your life. But once I discovered La Patisserie, the rest of Paris became a mere backdrop for my guilty pleasure. What’s a girl to do?



KimberleyAuthor Kimberley Montpetit
Kimberley Montpetit once spent all her souvenir money at the La Patisserie shops when she was in Paris—on the arm of her adorable husband. The author grew up in San Francisco, another swoon-worthy city, loves all things Parisian and chocolate and lives in a small town along the Rio Grande with her family. Kimberley has won many awards for her work, including the Southwest Book Award, the Whitney Award, the Arizona/New Mexico Book Award, is a Crystal Kite Finalist (SCBWI) and included in the Bank Street College Best Books of the Year. She once stayed in a haunted castle tower room at Borthwick Castle in Scotland, sailed on the Seine in Paris, walked the beaches of Normandy, eaten in numerous French cafes, ridden a camel in Petra, Jordan, sunbathed on Waikiki, shopped the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul, and spent the night in an old Communist hotel in Bulgaria. She adores all baked goodies; brownies, ├ęclairs, donuts, tarts, and pie, and makes a lot of chocolate chip cookies while revising. Kimberley is, of course, hard at work on her next novel(s).




BookBlast Giveaway $50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Ends 3/14/14 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Flirtacious Blog Hop with Rachel Harris and Giveaway



Welcome the lovely Rachel Harris!




A universal theme in pretty much everything I write, from sweet and funny to deeper and emotional, is the idea of masks. So many of us wear them, whether we intend to or not, and I love exploring that concept, whether it is trying on a new identity or shedding one. Another big theme is humor and flirtatiousness. I’m a romance junkie and while I love exploring relationships of all kinds (friendships, parental, and love), you can count on romance popping up in a Rachel Harris book. Hence, my author tagline, Unmask Your Inner-Flirt.

I thought it’d be fun to explore that concept with my main character, Cat Crawford. This is an EXCLUSIVE, EXTRA SCENE you won’t find anywhere else. (Even in the book!) It takes place within the scenes, right before an important turning point. I hope you enjoy!
***
The rhythmic trotting of horse hooves alerts me that our company has arrived.
I grin at my reflection in the small, round mirror. “It’s time to unmask my inner-Angeli.”
Back home I may be plain old boring and aloof Cat Crawford, art geek and daughter of Hollywood royalty, but Lucia’s right. Here I can be whoever I want to be. And from this point forward, I’m choosing to be Patience D’Angeli—a sixteenth-century London-transplant/ brand new Florentine, with zero mama drama weighing her down.
Glancing out my open window, I see Lorenzo step down from the carriage. There’s no denying the boy is hotter than Hades. And now seems as good a time as any to experiment with my new role. Pursing my lips and tapping them with an extended finger, I ask myself, what would Patience do now?
The answer: tear through the palazzo and down to the courtyard as if the paparazzi were chasing her.
Last night on the way home, Cipriano mentioned he’d send the carriage to pick up Lorenzo first thing in the morning, giving himself time to meet with Uncle—no doubt going over intense figures and calculations—before our outing. I swear that boy is in serious need of a vacay. And as for Alessandra, despite the super-sonic perkiness she exudes the rest of the time, she’s actually the exact opposite of a morning person, dragging her feet for at least an hour after her maid wakes her. But both of these traits suit my purposes this morning because it means that if I hurry, I’ll have a few moments with Lorenzo to myself.
Laughing, I bolt through my bedroom door. I mean, it’s not that I plan on really doing anything with these stolen minutes. I might be freer in the sixteenth century without the taint of my mother’s scandalous reputation and the mystique of having an uber-famous dad, but I’m not that free. I’m never gonna believe in all that sappy, romance novel crap, and I have no intention of being added to Lorenzo’s growing list of groupies. The boy may be a hottie, but I’m not falling for his Renaissance game.
I’m just curious to see if he’s a match for mine…and if I even have any.
I burst into the courtyard and scan the quiet square. Lorenzo’s stands a few feet in front of me, just before the trickling fountain. He’s turned away, admiring the fountain like I’ve done so many times since arriving a few days ago, so I let myself take a minute to appreciate the gift of beauty that he is.
The tan fabric of his doublet stretches across the breadth of his shoulders, outlining the muscles underneath. Disheveled blond curls brush against his white collar. And though I can’t see Lorenzo’s reflection, I can picture the chocolate depths of his eyes, the devastating twist of his grin that always hints at mischievousness, and my favorite part, the faintly crooked tooth his grin exposes.
I’m fascinated with that one imperfection.
In the midst of all Lorenzo’s swoon-worthy lines, that one flaw, as tiny it may be, helps me remember that he’s just a guy….
…..a guy that happens to be a smooth talking player-type.
“Patience, I feel the weight of your gaze.”
Startled from my thoughts—and still not really loving the sound of that horrid name being attributed to me—I quickly school my features before Lorenzo turns around. When he does, the right side of his mouth is already kicked up in a grin.  
Bingo. There it is.
I zone in on that one flaw of his, and begrudgingly admit that in the morning light it’s actually endearing. Nevertheless, it exists—and it’s my one protection against my traitorous hormones.
“Maybe I wanted you to know I was staring,” I say, not even knowing where I’m going with this. I look up at him through lowered lashes, kinda hating myself as I do for employing such a stereotypical girlish move, and say, “You are scrumptious eye candy ya know.”
A line of confusion crinkles between Lorenzo’s eyebrows and I fight back a laugh. In this case, using my strange vocabulary will be an advantage. Since this flirting thing is new to me, and I suck so very badly at it, I can take comfort in the fact that he won’t understand me, anyway.
I’ve always believed that if such a thing as a seductive gene existed, it either skipped me in the DNA pool or died a slow and painful death due to years of non-use. But as I always say, if you project a certain image with confidence, people tend to believe you. So, I decide to go with it and see what happens.
Clasping my hands behind my back, I take a step forward, effectively eliminating the distance between Lorenzo and I to a few tiny steps. I’m rewarded for my boldness with the widening of his eyes and an unmistakable flash of nervousness.
I do an internal jig of joy.
Unmasking my inner-flirt might be easier than I thought.  
And when Lorenzo’s darkened gaze sinks to my mouth, my little jig transforms into a full-on Thanksgiving Day Rockettes number, complete with jazz hands.  
Lorenzo clears his throat. Raising his eyes toward the open windows of the palazzo, he asks, “I presume Cipriano and Alessandra will join us shortly?”
I nod but otherwise remain silent, enjoying holding the power for once—not that I want to turn into Mama Dearest or anything. But hey, making a gorgeous guy squirm is a heady thing. And it’s evident in the way Lorenzo keeps shifting his weight that he is unaccustomed to a girl being the aggressor in his flirtatious repartee. He’s more comfortable with them melting in a puddle of drool at his feet.
Well, I guess my lack of swoonage is another oddity they can blame on my being from London—the euphemism I’ve adopted to explain away all my futuristic, twenty-first century behavior. It’s become quite handy for my bazillion cultural mess-ups, but I gotta say, I feel bad for giving Londoners such a bad rap.
Alessandra’s chirpy voice floats down from her second-story window and I know my time alone with Lorenzo is almost over. Wanting to press my advantage in these last stolen moments before he regains his player-footing, I close the small remaining distance between us and press my open palm against his chest.
Lorenzo’s breath catches audibly, and I grin. “I’m looking forward to our day in the country, without any… interruptions.”
The majority of the words, of course, are his; ones he told me just last night. But they seem to meet their purpose. Lorenzo’s pupils dilate and the rate of his pulse accelerates against my hand. Once again, his gaze lowers to my mouth, the heat of his stare simultaneously making me to want to abort my mission and close my eyes.
His hands reach out and grasp my waist.
My breathing hitches.
And Alessandra begins descending the stairs. “Cousin, are you out here already?”
Using the opened hand on his chest, I push away from Lorenzo and turn to answer. “Yep, down here.” Then I step back and grin.
Unmask your inner-flirt indeed.





Rachel Harris grew up in New Orleans, watching soap operas with her grandmother and staying up late sneak reading her mom's favorite romance novels. Now a Cajun cowgirl living in Houston, she still stays up too late reading her favorite romances, only now, she can do so openly. She firmly
believes life's problems can be solved with a hot, powdered-sugar-coated beignet or a thick slice of king cake, and that screaming at strangers for cheap, plastic beads is acceptable behavior in certain situations.

She homeschools her two beautiful girls and loves watching reality television with her amazing husband. She writes young adult, new adult, and adult Fun, Flirty Escapes, and LOVES talking with readers!


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