Sunday, April 24, 2011

Western Erotic Romance ~ Quincy’s Woman by Gem Sivad

Welcome to Gem Sivad. Since she was last with us at HEA, her books have become barn burners, receiving top review ratings and winning awards. Read the excerpt she shares with us below, and you’ll know why.

By the way! This Wednesday, April 27th, is the release date for Quincy’s Woman.

Thanks for having me on your blog, today! I’m very excited about my new Ellora’s Cave release, Quincy’s Woman, the latest title in my Eclipse Heat series. It’s a about the first year of marriage between Texas rancher, Ambrose Quince and Boston debutante, Lucille McKenna, a bride of eighteen who knows nothing about ranching, cooking, or bedsports.

When I wrote Intimate Strangers, I had no idea I was beginning an erotic western series. Five titles later, Eclipse, Texas is still calling to me. Quincy’s Woman is chronologically, Book One because I travelled back in time to 1866 to explore the year the unlikely couple met and married.

For those who are already familiar with my 19th century town, Eclipse, Texas, and the many characters you’ve met there, I hope you’ll read the beginning story, Quincy’s Woman and watch for the expanded versions of those you’ve already enjoyed.

As of May 26th, three titles, Intimate Strangers, Wolf’s Tender and Breed True will become unavailable in both print and ebook format as I add new scenes, brighten them up with new covers, and prepare them for re-release. For readers who haven’t sampled any of the series yet—here’s the blurb and excerpt for Quincy’s Woman:


Quincy’s Woman
Gem Sivad

Fresh from the post-Civil War salons and drawing rooms of Boston, Lucy McKenna considers herself a sophisticated young woman. But when she meets Texas rancher, Ambrose Quince, she turns into a flustered girl. He’s too old, war roughened and unrefined—and she has no idea how to deal with the sensual hunger he arouses within her.

Ambrose falls fast and hard for the innocent debutante visiting Eclipse, Texas. Persuading Lucy to accept his pursuit becomes a duel of wits and passion as he awakens her desire.

Lucy leaves Boston and childhood behind when she becomes Mrs. Ambrose Quince. Her lonely days on the Double-Q ranch are filled with work and frustration. But the nights are spent in her husband’s arms learning carnal awareness one molten caress at a time.


An Excerpt From: QUINCY’S WOMAN
ISBN: 9781419933424
Copyright © GEM SIVAD, 2011
All Rights Reserved, Ellora's Cave Publishing, Inc.

One day, as father looked through his spyglass at the herd of mustangs, I stood apart, watching the wild horses from the crest of the bluff above where they grazed. From a distance, they seemed a motley group. Nothing distinguished them but the red stallion leading the herd. He arched his neck and trumpeted a challenge as though he knew we watched. Then he snorted and circled his mares, urging them into a gallop as they fled.

“Beautiful, aren’t they?” Mr. Quince stood behind me, close enough so that I could feel the heat of his body.

I moved away, putting space between us and he said, “Hot out here for a woman with such delicate skin. I imagine you’d like to shuck some of those fancy clothes right now.” He made statements like that often, not seeming to understand the inappropriateness of his personal observations.

As for my fancy clothes, I’d worn my Boston riding livery, certainly not as elegant as my hunt dress. Mr. Quince’s remarks irritated me almost as much as the hot sun beating down on the heavy dark material. I was perspiring beneath it and miserably aware of the damp material clinging to my body. I ached to return to the shade of the hotel.

But I refused to admit my state of discomfort to the rancher. “I’m perfectly fine, Mr. Quince, but thank you for your concern.”

He shrugged and walked to where Papa stood, still following the progress of the horses. “There’s a cave hidden in the rock formation behind us. Would it be all right if I show it to Lucy? It’s a lot cooler inside than out here.” He asked permission from Papa without even suggesting it to me. I would have declined immediately had I been given the choice.

Papa waved vaguely in my direction and said, “Go along, Daughter. I suspect you’re bored and I expect Ambrose is right. The shade will be a pleasant respite for you.”

Mr. Quince looked smug and took my arm before I could make excuses. The cave was dark until Ambrose lit a torch by the entrance. I immediately experienced the drop in temperature, shivering in delight at the balm of cool air. Once inside, we stood in a pool of flickering light. I gazed around the massive cavern, pretending interest in the rocks rather than look at him.

He stepped closer and turned me to face him. Later when I recalled the event, I experienced the same trembling ache his next actions wrought. Ambrose Quince kissed me. Without my consent, he brushed his lips across mine. When I didn’t respond, not really knowing how, he draped my arms around his neck and pulled me closer.

A different kind of heat seized me. My internal temperature soared as my body brushed against his. My womb tightened, clenching as a shudder rippled across my flesh and I looked up breathlessly.

Mr. Quince’s stature being much greater than my own, he seemed to engulf me in the embrace as he molded my body against his. I later assured myself that had he not kept claim to my mouth and held me secured against his frame, I would have fled his intimate conduct.

But he held me fast, and I didn’t struggle for release when he continued the kiss. He savored my lips and murmured sounds that vibrated across my nerve endings. At first, I felt the barest stroke of his tongue—a not unpleasant sensation of wet heat touching my bottom lip. Nudging against the seam of my closed mouth, he muttered, “Open for me.”

Heat pulsed through me and I leaned into his kiss, obeying his order. It was as if I had no will of my own and must comply. He slid his tongue with shocking smoothness through the narrow space I allowed. My whimpered distress didn’t deter his intent. He tasted me, stroking my tongue with his in the most startling fashion.

“Kiss me back, Lucy,” he said against my lips.

It frightened me how easily he invaded my person, mastering my will. I melted against him, enjoying the feel of his tongue tangling with mine. It was intoxicating, making me heady and weak. Clutching the back of his shirt in my hand, I clung to him, needing to anchor myself lest I swoon.

When he tipped my head even farther back and arched my body over his arm, my breasts pressed against my dress, creating friction. I had the terrible urge to move against his chest and purr like a tabby cat, stretching and rubbing on him.

At last releasing my mouth, he stepped away from me and I almost fell. I had been so enthralled by his attentions my limbs seemed turned to liquid.

He drew me back in his arms but refrained from a second kiss. “You taste so sweet,” he growled in a voice even deeper than usual.

“You take liberties you shouldn’t,” I whispered, stepping away and putting distance between us. My breath was constricted and I almost panted the words.
Ambrose closed the distance I’d gained and covered my mouth with his again. This time, the kiss was a feathery stroke that ended up a nibble as he pressed his lips along my chin and up to my ear.

He nuzzled the sensitive lobe and murmured, “Shouldn’t I?” Brushing his mouth across mine again, he sought to make me recant my words. He delivered soft caresses to my face and neck, all the time emitting a low rumbling sound.

I swayed on my feet, completely undone and speechless until he growled, “Your skin is as soft as a kitten’s belly.”

The image of Ambrose Quince caressing my stomach popped into my head and finally I wrenched free, backing toward the cave entrance as though the devil stood before me. His image, outlined by the flickering torch, strengthened the comparison and I whispered desperately, “I do not favor your attentions, Mr. Quince. Please desist from further pursuit.”

When we left the cavern, my lips were numb, swollen from his kisses and my own excessive response. I prayed Father wouldn’t notice. I need not have worried. Papa was so elated by the stallion he’d marked for his possession he spoke only to Ambrose.

AVAILABLE on April 27th at Ellora’s Cave.

Gem’s Place

Gem Sivad at Ellora’s Cave

Gem Sivad on Twitter

Along with yours truly, Gem is a contributing author at the ROMANCE WRITER’S BEHAVING BADLY blog.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Romancing the Year of the Rabbit

Hi, everyone. Just in time for Easter, here’s a flash scene I wrote for my post at SHAPESHIFTER SEDUCTIONS. I thought I’d share here because I am blatantly promo-ing the YEAR OF THE RABBIT BLOG HOP. Details are below.

Warning: Bad Language ahead. But the rabbit is saved.

Magickal, Fantastical Bunny

Once upon a time on Earth, we Shapeshifters ruled. That thousand year reign has been nearly lost to history, and now belongs to the timeless mists surrounding this third planet from the sun.

The only remnants are myths and legends, and a few ancient ruins. Yes, there are written documents. However, they are hidden away, and mostly used for sinister and despicable purposes.

During my epoch, Earth, or Galaxias, as we knew her, orbited the Grand Light as the fourth planet, and later as the fifth. At that time, Venus was not with us. Mercury and his two sisters were. A colossal comet streaked into the solar system, and instead of allowing the destructive force to claim Galaxias, we hired a space-faring, super race to capture the barren comet.

In retrospect, adding the comet to the gravitational dynamics of the solar system backfired on us, because it allowed for a climate change conducive to the rise of the dinosaurs. Even though, these massive creatures were no danger to us, those who had brought their genetics to Earth proved to be the Betrayers.

And, they still are.

The Betrayers, as a race, have remained on Earth. Many wars and battles have been fought at their instigation, and some in an effort to rid the world of their presence.

As of this time, April 2011, the Betrayers, these Grays are on the rise. They threaten all Life on my beloved Galaxias.

I am a Slayer.

I am invisible to them because of their arrogance. They have no natural love of animals. They sense only fur and meat. My blood is meant only for their constant genetic experiments.

Yes, I will own the advantage, despite their advanced mind capabilities, and their manipulative technologies. The real challenge will be the primitive rigors of life in what is called the early 21st century.

My real test is mental survival. Will I successfully negotiate the labyrinth of the human mind, as well as the fractionalized minds of surviving shapeshifters? For, by creating endless mayhem and agony, the Grays have split their psyches against their divine natures.

Raising my arms in reverence, I part the etheric curtain, and gaze at the moon on the eighteenth day of April. For long moments, her celestial breath becomes my breath. Once she invites me into her embrace, I merge and she becomes my through-the-mists barge.

On the white-jewel beams of the Great Feminine, I arrive in Talbot’s Peak, the new haven for shapeshifters.

Or, for those of you with a bent toward science, I utilize the moon’s 2012-activated frequencies. In instants, I exchange my particles from my where I was in time, to where I land now, the midnight forest close to what is called the Interspecies Pleasure Club.

Land. On my four paws. I’m in trouble. Somehow, I have been morphed against my will into my animal form. With my instincts kicking in, I sniff the breezes while peering through the deep darkness for the nearest safe thicket.

The odor of hunting werewolves shivers through me. Paralyzed for an instant, I then leap in the direction of a small bush still shrouded by autumn leaves. Too late!

Four sets of paws race toward me, vibrationally thundering the ground. I hear their quickening pants in anticipation of the chase, then the kill. The rending of me from limb to blood-spurting limb.

Launching forward, I sprint, my hindquarters driving me ever faster over the moist fecund ground. With the hungry werewolves hot on my trail, and way too close to my tail, I zigzag between the large tree trunks. The vegetation is all too sparse here.

Still, I am a survivor. I have been prey many times. With fear coursing my blood, I sense for any means of escape. Seeing chrome riding machines, and the light from the above-ground bar, I ran flat out until I am weaving madly between the wheels.

Crashing thuds follow me like dominos. The motorcycles, as they are called, must be flying in all directions. I race for the bar’s entrance, and as the door opens, spilling a pathway of light, I charge between one of the patron’s legs. He shouts a string of curses, then I hear, “What the fuck! Is that a goddamn rabbit?”

Inside, I dash wherever there is open space. Roaring growls split the air. Some of the women shriek. Drinks splash and spill. Glass shatters on impact. Chairs scrape the floor, one right after another. The jagged sound hurts my ears.

“It is a fucking rabbit.”

“Someone grab dinner.”

With bedlam following in my wake, I avoid the surprised stomp of boots, the tipping tables and the falling chairs. I hear the door being bolted, then the slam of werewolves against the heavy, obviously steel-reinforced wood planks.

As the saying goes here, I’ve jumped out of the frying pan and into the fire. And, everyone wants me for dinner.

With a giant hop, I dart behind the bar, and run the length. Just as I dive between several liquor bottles, giant hairy morphing hands come real close to grabbing my ears and tail.

With my heart beating fast and hard against my ribs, and the blood pounding in my flattened ears, I scrunch backward, behind the tall bottles. Making myself as small as possible, I press against the walls of the storage compartment beneath the bar.

“If anyone shifts you’re banned for a week.” The dominant voice reigns over the mad-hatter frenzy. “Barry, you and your crew, throw out whoever needs to be tossed on their furry asses.”

“Sure thing. Need to tell ya, Dante, that critter don’t look like no ordinary rabbit.”

“It’s red.” A female voice barks squeakily. “And tall. Extra long legs.”

“Anyone here stop to think it might be a shifter, and a customer?”

It’s this Dante’s commanding voice. I stop my frantic quivering long enough to train one ear forward.

“Couldn’t be a customer, Dante. It busted in here, running pell mell like it was rabid or something. You shoulda seen the leap it made when it dashed behind the bar. Want me to show you were it’s hiding?”

“Yeah, Kelly. Get your shift under control first.”

“Well, you’d be running scared too, if a pack of werewolves were snapping at your tail...and you were a rabbit.”

The woman’s spirited voice sends a jolt of much-needed warmth through me. But, what now? I’m unable to shift yet. Fear has me in its icy-taloned grip. I can't even move.

There’s a pause, and I feel everyone’s attention focused on this Dante. He must be the alpha in charge. Although, that is not my intel.

“Listen up,” he growls authoritatively. “Is there anyone here who has a fondness for rabbits? And, I don’t mean for good eating. Got it?”

In the heavy silence, I tremble, but avoid rattling the bottles.

“Yeah, Dante. I had a rabbit girlfriend. Once.” I feel the man’s glare before he speaks again. “No,” he growls sharply, “I didn’t eat her at the first full moon.”

“Ridge Runner, over here. Bend my ear privately. Kelly, get drinks for everyone on the house. Back off,” Dante orders, “give us some breathin’ room.”

An eery quiet takes over the place, and I listen to Dante’s and this Ridge Runner’s footsteps come closer. They sit at the bar, and fast enough, their noses sniff me out. The frequency of it travels through my bones.

Even though, I manage to angle my ears toward them, I hear only the low sound of their voices, but no words. If I could only shift...

“Problem here?” the young woman’s voice floats on the airwaves beautifully. “Oh, oh, there is a bunny here.” Her true joy stuns me at the same time it fills me with some relief. “Where are you bunny? Here, bunny? All I want to do is hold you, and pet you...I promise.”

“Damara, you’re underage. What are you doing here?” Dante’s voice is stern, yet also kind.

“I told you. I want to dance. Like Gypsy does. I’m learning. Besides, you need me right now.”

“I better not find out who let you in here,” Dante growls like a protective father.

“No one,” Damara proudly lilts, as she continues in my direction, moving behind the bar. “Bunny...beautiful rabbit...I’ll carry you out of here.”

I know suddenly why Damara is drawn so strongly to rabbits. The scent of her blood hums through me. She is a witch keeper of hares, and draws strength from their companionship. Although, I am uncertain if she is aware of her heritage.

As her light footsteps approach, I stretch just enough to view her face. She bends over to look for me, and our gazes meet. When she smiles, her surreal radiance is like the moon.

“Oh, magical, fantastical,” she murmurs. With a slow hand, she sets the bottles to the side, then reaches forward, her palms open, her hands soft. “My magical, fantastical bunny,” she croons. “Come here, please. Please...”

My muscles cooperate, and I gradually lengthen myself. With a sniff of her fingertips, I give a hop right into her arms. She rises hugging me to her bosom, and I feel her smile of sheer delight. “Oh, you are a big bundle of bunny goodness. And, what a lovely red chestnut color you are. Just like my pony.”

“Stay away,” she warns, once she’s carried me a distance. “Except for Ridge Runner. He can come with us.”

“He better,” Dante rasps with quiet alpha power. “He’s your guardian from now on. For both you, and the rabbit shifter. Damara, do you hear me?”

“I hear you,” Damara trills over her shoulder. “I wonder what you look like? I bet you’re as beautiful human as you are a rabbit.”

“Yeah, I bet she is too.” Ridge Runner strides beside us.

Is that carnal hunger I hear in his voice? It’s been so long since -- ignoring my sudden yearning, I cuddle into Damara’s hold, and thank the Most Sacred for my rescue.

Year of the Rabbit Blog Hop

Just in case you want a different kind of egg treasure hunt... as in hot fun flash stories and hawt pics... also fab prizes, with the grand prize being a Nook... well, a bunch of us authors are combining our talents this Easter weekend, April 23-24, for a blog hop. Take a preview peek here ~ ~

At SHAPESHIFTER SEDUCTIONS we’ll be hopping and bopping, also, and there just might be a few bunny shapeshifters celebrating Spring with fertility rites at Talbot’s Peak during the blog hop. Or, maybe not. Ya never know who, or what kind of shapeshifter/paranormal being/human, will show up.



Savanna Kougar ~ Run on the Wild Side of Romance ~

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Interactive Communication on Social Sites

People are so funny.

We're all from different parts of the world, different cultures, different upbringings, and have issues which determines daily mindsets. I'm reminded of this every single day on Facebook. I have people who are in the middle of divorces, have health issues, or are just plain off-the-wall. And then there are the kids who totally throw me for a loop. They post things that give the impression something is wrong in their world, but as it turns out, it's simply a lyric from a song they just heard. Thank goodness I have a son who stops me from worrying over his friends.

Facebook is a world all it's own. It's easy to get lost in it with messaging, chatting and the games. Oh, the games. There is something for everyone. It's a wonderful place to keep in touch with long distance people.

I spend more time in my personal account with my family friends than I do my author account, but sometimes like with the rest of the internet - it gets crowded and I need to put space between it and myself. Everything in moderation.

In my author account, it's the same world, all the same issues, but a completely different atmsophere. I'll comment on a post here and there only if I have something constructive to add. Promotional experts say it's more important to comment than to plaster post after post about your books. I get that. However, in the writing world, it's awkward to comment on posts of people you really don't know. I don't do a lot of posting on the main page, simply because no one acknowledges them. I tend to post on the fan page which only those who've liked the page can see. I find this kind of lonely as I don't even know if people read the posts since I rarely get a response. I've tried different topics, usually about my world - my kids, my health, my books, our household projects. I don't really know what will get people to become interactive.

I think many of us have the same problem. Every day that I log in, there are at least 300 new posts waiting to be downloaded. I have nearly 500 friends and so it's rather difficult to keep up. When I scroll down about six pages worth, I'm finding that people aren't trying to engage people, rather they are doing what experts say they shouldn't - promoting and sending the reader to another site where they hope for a purchase. I think that's ok as long as it's not all they do. I've been guilty of it for probably the same reasons they do it.

Other posts are complaining about the government, quoting scripture or talking about personal bits of their lives they probably shouldn't be putting in public forum. I don't mind hearing about some personal issues as a discussion can be beneficial to all involved. I think it's awesome to be able to help others through your own experience. These posts, however, are few and far between.

Yesterday, I did an experiment. I went through the posts and hid all the people who don't contribute to the general population as far as constructive communication. I went back about six pages - it's about all I can do before I'm completely bored with the task. What I ended up with was like five people. I left and returned a few hours later and not much had changed. There were new posts, but other than those five people, I think there were only four other people and none them were contributing to the community. When I came in this morning, I had 300 posts, but when I looked through them, there were about 30 people besides those I had yesterday and I went back several pages until I ran into yesterdays post.

This probably means that three quarters of the people on my friend list either seldom or never posts. But that's neither here nor there. What concerns me is that I, and you who are on my Facebook list, might be missing out on some awesome posts, because they are shoved pages back to die in la-la land. I do have a few where I will go directly to their pages to make sure I haven't missed something.

Now, don't get bent out of shape if you are on my friend list. Hidden doesn't mean I unfriended you. You're still there and very welcome. I will go back in and unhide everyone. 

I understand we all grasp at any venue to promote our books. Our friend lists are made up of mostly writers, and while they read, are they really aren't interested in seeing post after post of advertisements. I don't. I want to get to know you.

What can we do to make every post constructive and contributing to the whole? How can we make them interactive? Any ideas?


Friday, April 1, 2011

New Release - Absentee Love Returns

Gail Green's world is turned upside down when an alleged mobster gives her an ultimatum, lose her newborn son or follow orders. When they are kidnapped, she has no idea which of the Galletti’s enemies is behind it. [Contemporary, mildly erotic]


“You’re under contract. Don’t forget it!” Vincent Galletti ordered.

“How the hell can I?” Gail swung around to face the horrid man who headed the family. “You people remind me every minute of every day.” He turned and left the room after a long, stare of superiority.

Gail refrained from throwing the glass across the room, drinking from it instead. Yes, she had to honor all parts of the contract forced on her despite the fact Rico could care less about her. Proof of that came months ago when she’d awakened to find him gone from her bed, and no word thereafter despite his professed love.

She walked to the window. The warm rays of the sun of the summer day didn’t penetrate the chill she felt. Ever since Vincent Galletti had walked into her hospital room with a court order to take her son in one hand and an ultimatum in the other, she’d lived with an abnormal since of coldness.

The click of the door caused her back to stiffen in preparation for more hurling words, demands, and threats that she had to bear if she wanted to remain in her son’s life.

Hands came down on her shoulder, and she cringed. He wouldn’t dare try anything here, not in the room next to where his mother lay and his family gathered. The fingers gripped her, but didn’t dig in as she was turned around. A hand slid down her arms while she registered it wasn’t Vicenzo. Lips touched her head, her forehead before she registered the danger and tried to push him away.

Rico’s mouth closed over hers as she opened to protest. Her need for love and comfort won out over the consequences. She gripped his biceps and moved her mouth with his, drowning in the heady scent of soap and peppermint. Tongues danced and she ached to return to the nights where passion drove them into the wee hours of the morning.

He broke the connection, but didn’t move away. “I had to know.”


“We’ll talk.” he whispered then brushed her lips again.

“No…Rico…” She heard the music signaling the start of the service. Panic began to rise, knowing someone would come for her if she didn’t appear. “I must go as you should. I can’t be caught with you.”

“Trust grandmother, no one else,” he whispered, kissed her again and she watched him walk from the room.
Her shoulders slumped. She wanted answers, but was more afraid of them. The confirmation of his running from her bed, to another woman's would be throwing gas on simmering coals of squelched anger and sadness. He needed to keep his secrets.

Secrets, her life had become trapped in them and she couldn’t tell him hers. What his family did was backed by the court system, by money, power, and threats. Not to speak of their disownment of Rico.

“The family has sat,” Vicenzo announced from the doorway.

Gail clenched her jaw and tried to pass by him, but he grabbed her arm. “Don’t do anything foolish.”

She glared at him for several seconds, and then told him, “Don’t touch me.”

“Oh, I will. I’ll do more than touch.”

“And die prematurely?”

He dropped his hand. “Mind your mouth.”

“Go to hell.”

Available at: Smashwords, Lulu, Soon: Sony, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, Diesel, Apple