Tuesday, November 30, 2010

New Release ~ FIVE CARD STUD by Gem Sivad ~ Western Erotic Romance


When bounty hunter Sam McCallister sees Eden Pace playing poker for the first time, he loses all interest in the cards; instead, the thought of playing stud with the lady gambler stirs his cock to life. Eden’s the prettiest woman and the best card sharp Sam’s ever met. Good thing he has a few cards up his sleeve.

Eden’s doing her own outlaw hunting. She’s on the trail of her husband’s killer and Sam’s in her way. To get free of this hardheaded, softhearted, gorgeous man, Eden tries strip poker and naked truth-or-dare, but when Sam ups the stakes, carnal submission and desire are unleashed.

When Sam discovers Eden’s wanted for murder, he figures his bed is the safest place for her. But taking Eden prisoner isn’t as easy as Sam expects. He’s in a high-stakes poker game with lust on the table and his heart on the line, because one taste of Eden just isn’t enough.


Sam watched Eden kneel beside the shimmering bubbles as she tested the water—expecting, he was sure, to find it frigid. Instead, he knew heat pulsed under her touch, water as warm as the bath she’d taken in Wichita Falls.

“Are we in for the night?” she asked without taking her eyes off the pool.

“Yep.” His one-word answer seemed to be enough this time.

“What do you plan to do with me?” Eden asked over her shoulder as she disrobed.

Sam could see that she didn’t intend to play shy around him. That was good, because if she was waiting for him to look away, she’d be an old woman when she gave up.

“Plenty.” He worked the one word through lips almost as stiff as his cock. She was a sight to see and she knew it, standing there flaunting her wares at him.

“All right,” she huffed. Her words were filled with irritation as she stepped out of dress and chemise in one fluid motion. “Is that what this is about?” She sounded genuinely surprised when she asked, “You’re not interested in the bounty?”

Eden turned to face him as she gathered her long mane of hair, re-pinning it on top of her head. She stood naked on the rim of the rock pool, surrounded by torchlight.

Jesus, the woman's trying to kill me. Savoring the creamy skin covering her slender curves, he followed the lift of her arm and watched her rounded breast tilt upward. Licking lips suddenly gone dry, Sam let his eyes center on the patch of dark curls at the V of her thighs. He admitted gruffly, “You were on the top of my wanted list as soon as I set eyes on you. Handbill or not, I’d have claimed you.”

Eden walked around the hot spring and followed the ancient steps down into the pool. Her soft moan of pleasure echoed in the cave. “Ohhh, this is wonderful.”

His voice sounded pretty rough to his own ears when he called over to her, “You plannin’ on fuckin’ me senseless again so you can escape?”

Her laughter bounced off the walls, followed by her answer. “Yes.”

If there was one thing Sam enjoyed more than the chase, it was the challenge of keeping the prey once caught. “Give me a minute to get us settled for the night, pretty lady. Then you can commence your getaway attempt.”


Released on December 1, 2010 ~ Buy Link

Visit Gem’s Place

Gem Sivad

Friday, November 26, 2010

The Romantic Awakening of Sleeping Beauty

Picture from ~

For a beautiful illustration of ~The Romantic Awakening of Sleeping Beauty~ read Lindsay Townsend’s ‘free’ short story, A CHRISTMAS SLEEPING BEAUTY. I confess shedding some good tears, those sweet tears that slip down your cheeks when lovers discover each other, or are reunited for their Happily Ever After. The story is available at THE PINK BLOG.

Lindsay’s story inspired this SWEET Flash Story. Yes, for those of you who thought I only wrote erotic romance...well, yes, I can pen a sweet romance...believe it, or not.

The Awakening of Sharomond
by Savanna Kougar

She walked in the land of shadows. Even her roses were pale shadows, their vibrant beauty denied to her, their heavenly scents gone. Sharomond remembered another life, another time, when lush fragrant rosebushes, heavy with red and pink blooms, twined up her balcony stairway. When roses, happy in their abundance, climbed up the marble archway of her garden. Dreamy, ephemeral and brilliant, her roses had been nearly every color and shade in the rainbow. Once upon a time.

Fleeting glimpses of a man, a warrior prince by his dress, haunted her. During her endless sojourn in the land of shadows she would catch sight of him astride a magnificent dragonhorse stallion. Or, she would briefly see him battling the leviathan black shadow that domed her entire land.

Sharomond had never found her parents, or discovered another human being in the shadowland. The animals were shades of gray. Moving and acting like apparitions, they took no notice of her presence. Loneliness had long ago driven her mad. Yet, madness meant nothing here. Still, she wandered, dreariness clinging to her like a wet woolen blanket.

Sharomond never saw his face, the elusive warrior prince. The color of his eyes remained a mystery, as did the manly definition of his physique. She had tried with all her might to reach him, running until he vanished.

She had tried to speak to him with her thoughts until despair ruled her heart so brutally she had been forced to quit. Sharomond only knew he was as she had once been. Alive. Alive, in a glorious land where shadows did not reign.

Sharomond could not remember how or why she roamed this shadowland. No amount of pondering brought her closer to any manner of answer. What lived inside her now was rage, a rage to find and conquer whoever had cast her spirit into this gray-black imprisonment.

In truth, Sharomond did not know the fate of her people. Were they still living their lives, cherishing the seasons and celebrating their joys? Who cared for them in their time of need? Who brought healing herbs and broths to them when illness struck?

A slight rustle of sound, one she had never heard in this land of shadows, drew her toward her sumptuously attired bed, now mere mist in appearance. Even though, her coverlet and pillows were layers of luxurious mist, they were as insubstantial as her existence.

An urge to lie down claimed Sharomond, and she obeyed. Why not? For, nothing held any great importance anymore. Unless, she could figure out a way to escape. Unless, she was granted a rescuer by some unknown benevolent hand. Unknown, indeed. Had not every one of her often-whispered prayers gone unanswered? No, her God did not recognize her. Not here. Not hidden by the shadows.

With her eyelids slipping closed, Sharomond draped the coverlet over her, even though it felt like a sodden featherbed. She prepared herself to feel nothing, to dream nothing. But, again, she heard a sound. The scrape of a boot? An odd sensation skittered through her. Was it excitement? So foreign was the feeling, she could not tell.

Warm lips pressed against hers suddenly. To her complete astonishment, a tender kiss was placed upon her mouth. Another kiss followed. This one was more urgent and longer, yet just as gentle.

Sharomond fought to respond, puckering her lips. In that moment she did not care who took liberties with her mouth. She only wanted more. So much more of this fleshly paradise.

The next kiss devoured her entire mouth with a passion she had once dreamed about. Sharomond felt the thick waves of a man’s hair inside her fist. Startled beyond any bearing, she stilled, yet did not let go. Rough breathing filled her ears, and she became aware her pants joined with the impassioned pants of another.

“Sharomond, can you hear me?” a man’s voice asked.

The low rich timbre reminded her of being in a deep dark forest, and she trembled with what felt like desire. A familiarity about the man teased her memory. Yet, no image of his countenance entered her head.

“Awaken, please. I need you. Your people need you.”

Once again, his lips seized hers. Gentleness was replaced by a searing fusion of their mouths. A light flashed before her mind’s eyes, and Sharomond felt utterly ignited. Almost painfully so. In that moment she knew who kissed her awake.

“No,” she forced out, even as her eyes flew open. His visage filled her gaze, the warrior who had won her hand in marriage. She had refused him, fearing he would demand her complete obedience.

Eyes, composed of midnight and emeralds, roved over her face. The concern glittering in the depths was so obvious her heart jerked like a rabbit freeing itself, yet leapt toward him. Sharomond un-fisted his dark coppery-colored mane of hair, an act against her sudden yearning for him.

“Sharomond, I love you. I will care for you in every way that you may need as you recover. And, my beloved, I will not insist you become my bride.”

With those words, Dhutrov straightened his handsome, sleekly hewn torso. From his kneeling position beside her, he took hold of her hand. Tenderly, he encouraged her to sit up.

Shivering like the last leaf on a tree in the face of winter’s winds, Sharomond kept her hand firmly clasped within his. The sheer vibrancy of her bedchamber caused her eyes to blink and water. A banquet of smells assaulted her nostrils. Roses, her precious roses, their scents drifted to her as if in welcome.

“The Seventh Coven of Abarus bespelled you and your people,” Dhutrov answered her question before Sharomond could ask, the one hovering on the tip of her tongue. “Your realm was considered to be too influential, too powerful.”

Sharomond knew then. With her whole soul she knew. Still, she needed to hear it spoken. “The state of our world?”

“Beloved, I must be the bearer of terrible news. Our world has fallen to those who are dark-hearted and cruel. To those who have no thought, but for themselves.”

“Yet, your lands remain free, do they not?”

“Yes. But, I am in need of you and your people to stand with us in freedom, or it will be lost.”

Torn in two, between the joy of being rescued from the land of shadows and the reality that her world now suffered from despotic rule, Sharomond could not stop the flood of tears bursting from her eyes.

She wept uncontrolled. Dhutrov lent his shoulder to her and murmured comforting words. His arms embraced her close, feeling invincible in their strength.

Sharomond reached upwards clinging to his neck like a child. Placing her on his lap, he wrapped himself around her, holding her until her weeping eased.

Their lips met in a salty kiss, yet the lingering press of their mouths overwhelmed her with sweetness, the new sweetness of love.

“Dhutrov,” she whispered her heart.

He cupped the side of her face, his gaze adoring her. “Side-by-side, we will ride, my Sharomond, and we will know triumph against our enemies.”

“Yes. As warriors we will ride together.” Sharomond caressed his hand and smiled with her newly found happiness.

Awaken to Your Heart this Holiday Season ~


Savanna Kougar ~ Run on the Wild Side of Romance ~

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving To All Of Our Readers

(Edgar Albert Guest, 1881-1959)

Gettin' together to smile an' rejoice,
An' eatin' an' laughin' with folks of your choice;
An' kissin' the girls an' declarin' that they
Are growin more beautiful day after day;
Chattin' an' braggin' a bit with the men,
Buildin' the old family circle again;
Livin' the wholesome an' old-fashioned cheer,
Just for awhile at the end of the year.

Greetings fly fast as we crowd through the door
And under the old roof we gather once more
Just as we did when the youngsters were small;
Mother's a little bit grayer, that's all.
Father's a little bit older, but still
Ready to romp an' to laugh with a will.
Here we are back at the table again
Tellin' our stories as women an men.

Bowed are our heads for a moment in prayer;
Oh, but we're grateful an' glad to be there.
Home from the east land an' home from the west,
Home with the folks that are dearest an' best.
Out of the sham of the cities afar
We've come for a time to be just what we are.
Here we can talk of ourselves an' be frank,
Forgettin' position an' station an' rank.

Give me the end of the year an' its fun
When most of the plannin' an' toilin' is done;
Bring all the wanderers home to the nest,
Let me sit down with the ones I love best,
Hear the old voices still ringin' with song,
See the old faces unblemished by wrong,
See the old table with all of its chairs
An I'll put soul in my Thanksgivin' prayers.

This year, I'm thankful for so much. For having my health back. For not having to work full time so I can spend more time with my family. For old and new friends who've been endless encouragement and fun. For the opportunity to remodel our living room the way we want it and for all the people who have helped us both in the stores, here at the house and online. For our four-legged friends who are a constant comfort and joy.

Wishing you all a Happy Thanksgiving!


Saturday, November 20, 2010

My Palate Was Seduced

Last night, I had the most wonderful wine. Pinot Noir for me is the best wine on the market. However, like in all things, there are bad apples. I've found plenty of bad apples among the choosing, usually choices I've found in the stores such as Cavit Pinot Noir and Arbor Mist Pinot Noir.

In my last position, wine was a big part of our menu selection. We had to know them in order to suggest them. When I started there I really didn't care for wines - too heavy, dry and taste horrible. And definitely didn't find any fun in the drinking of them. I know many people disagree, but somewhere along the six years I was there, I found Pinot Noir to be to my liking. I also like a sweet wine called Moscato Asti.

Often these days when we go out and I'm not driving, I'll order a glass of Pinot Noir. Most are tollerable and I've never had to send one back. I did send a glass of wine back a couple of years ago, though. The server had brought me a glass of Merlot and insisted she did not. When she returned with another glass, I tasted it and my whole body sighed. Yes, there is a difference.

Mirassou Pinot Noir did something that no other has ever done. It caused me to order a second glass. Wow! When our server set the glass down, I sniffed it to make sure it was not a Merlot or some other red. It smelled right, so I tasted it. OMG! It had the most beautiful flavor. I all but guzzled the glass and was on my second before our entree came.

Something else happened, too. I felt giddy and quite buzzed. I feared if I'd had one more glass I would have been dancing on the table. That has never happened before, with wine. Wine typically gives me a headache and makes me lethargic.

I highly recommend Mirassou Pinot Noir - let it seduce you.

I often use Pinot Noir in my stories, but there are so many wines from all the over the world that we all should mix it up some. Wine is a common prop used by writers so why not make them fun for the reader.


Wednesday, November 3, 2010


Mistletoe Everywhere, my Regency Christmas comedy, is here!

A man who sees mistletoe everywhere is mad--or in love.

Charles sees mistletoe. Not surprising, since he's spending Christmas at Mistletoe Manor. But why does no one else see it? And why does it always appear above Penelope, the despised lady who jilted him after their last meeting?

Penelope wants nothing to do with the faithless Charles, the man who cried off after she accepted his marriage proposal. But he still stirs her heart--and he stares at her all the time. Or rather, he stares at the empty ceiling over her head…What does he see?

According to folklore, mistletoe is the plant of peace. Can Penelope and Charles, so full of hurt and anger, heed the mistletoe's message and make peace?


After Charles had heaped his plate with more food than he wanted, he took one of the empty chairs at the table bottom, as far from Penelope as possible.

His tensed muscles eased as he joked with his friends. Smythe made a comment and Charles turned to answer. He caught sight of Penelope…and a monstrous bunch of mistletoe above her.

"Gordon? What is it?" Smythe swiveled in the direction Charles was staring. He looked up and down, and from one side to the other. "I say, with your mouth hanging open like that, you must see something spectacular, but damned if I know what it is."

With an audible click, Charles clamped his jaw shut. "I thought I saw…" He forced his gaze back to his companion. "Nothing. I imagined I saw mistletoe."

Smythe's eyebrows rose. "Mistletoe?"

"Yes. The house is named 'Mistletoe Manor', so the place is filled with mistletoe decorations. Pictures, wall hangings, ceiling trim, whatnot."

"Indeed." Smythe's eyebrows rose higher. "That 'mistletoe' you saw is over that Miss Lawrence. Lovely little filly." His lips curved into a knowing grin. "My jaw dropped the first time I saw her, too."

Charles stiffened. "I was not looking at Miss Lawrence. I believed I saw mistletoe over her."

"'Mistletoe'." Symthe's grin widened. "Of course."

And I hope you will get what you want for Christmas, too!


CONTEST: Leave your name and email in the Guest Book on my website,, for a chance to win a PDF copy of Mistletoe Everywhere. Contest runs through December 15. Note, all of you who entered my Pumpkinnapper contest are already entered to win a second copy of Mistletoe Everywhere.

Thank you all,
Linda Banche
Welcome to My World of Historical Hilarity!