Thursday, 14 February 2013

New Book Release - An Unexpected Party

Celebrate this Valentine's Day with the release of 
Book Four in the Valentine's Day Collection.

Henrietta Clarke introduces us to a tale of misconceptions, a mother in denial, and some serious baggage in "An Unexpected Party." Meet Peregrine and Merry, two unlikely souls who meet at a speed dating event. Problem: Peregrine is very much in demand with the ladies, although he seems to be having trouble tearing his attention away from the gorgeous waiter for the night. (m/m romance)

Valentine’s Day sucks! Merry Breton is reminded of this again when he receives a call from his boss to work a last minute job, even though he worked New Year’s as well. And to top it all off he hears from the very man who had ruined this same day last year—Kieran Church. His lover of two years who had stood him up on Valentine’s Day and from whom he’d not heard a word since. He supposes it should be good news that Kieran has finally come out of the closet and is still in love with him, but the news is exactly forty-five days too late.

Forty-five excruciatingly long days have passed since New Year’s Eve—the night Peregrine Harding attended a speed dating function at Sheffield’s premier hotel to appease his terminally ill mother and ended the night in bed with a very cute waiter. Unfortunately, the man who quickly wormed his way into Peregrine’s heart had promptly informed him upon waking that he didn’t date men who couldn’t find their way out of the closet and walked away.

Common sense tells them that they should forget their one night of passion and move on, that neither of them is in the right place for a relationship. But Merry can no sooner forget about Peregrine than Peregrine can forget about him.

An Unexpected Party is available for purchase now on our website:

Enjoy this excerpt from An Unexpected Party:

“Oh, bugger off!” Meredith Breton groaned, pulling his pillow over his head to drown out the sound of “Working Nine to Five.” That ringtone was exclusive to his boss, and she was the last person he wanted to speak to first thing in the morning on a lazy December 31—the first day off he’d had in a week.

He breathed a sigh of relief as the phone stopped ringing, then cursed afresh as it began again within a minute.
“Fine!” he snapped at the recalcitrant device, tossing the pillow aside and snatching up his iPhone. “’S’up, Hol?” he mumbled sleepily once he’d answered, flinching in anticipation of his boss’s usual cheerful tones.
“Rise and shine, Breton; we have an emergency!” Holly-Ann Christie sounded uncharacteristically flustered, indicating desperation, and Merry felt his heart sink.
“Well tell it to bugger off,” he returned grumpily, seeing his day off disappearing rapidly. “You’re calling now for a job tonight? Really? When your initial booking cancelled, it was the best news I’d had all year!”
“C’mon, Merry, please? Cut me some slack here; you any idea how hard it is to find people to work New Year’s Eve at this short notice? You wouldn’t believe how fast people make alternative plans when they think they won’t have to work after all.”
“Oh, I’ll believe it, Hol—you’re talking to one of those people right now. And as for finding someone who will work, try starting by not calling the people who worked Christmas Eve!” Merry returned.
“I’ll pay double time …” Holly-Ann cajoled, and Merry could tell she was truly desperate. Nice though she was when she wasn’t in full-scale boss-bitch mode, she was always kind of stingy about dishing out the cash. The rarity of this offer almost tempted him, but still …
“No,” he reiterated firmly. “C’mon, Hol, give me a chance at a life, yeah?”
“Be fair, Meredith; you’ll get New Year’s Day off,” his boss responded a tad sharply.
“And the hell is the use of that without a hangover to sleep off?” Merry demanded. “Besides, calling me ‘Meredith’ is not the way to get what you want.” He almost hung up the phone: if there was one thing Merry truly hated, it was his full name.
“Sorry, hon.” Holly-Ann sounded contrite. “But I’m dying here! I need to be able to cater this event. I promised the poor desperate organiser that I would—and if I can provide a service of the highest standard for this event, I can hopefully gain some clients from the attendees. Word of mouth is powerful advertisement. So I need you, Merry—you’re the best I got, and you know it.”
“I bet you say that to all the guys,” Merry muttered cynically, but he couldn’t help but feel flattered nonetheless.
“Please, Merry.” He could practically hear Holly-Ann’s eyelashes flutter down the phone, and found himself relenting somewhat, if only because he was curious about why his boss was holding back the precise details of the job when usually she was briskly forthcoming.
“So what is this event tonight, anyway? Swanky party or something?”
“Nope.” Holly-Ann chuckled, though there must have been a fault with the line, because it sounded kind of … bemused. “Actually, it’s speed dating, of all things. The hotel it’s being held in rang the organiser not half an hour ago to apologise and tell him that though the room is still his, they’re no longer able to cater the event. There’s a major electrical issue in the kitchen that they won’t be able to get fixed for a couple of days, thanks to tomorrow being a national holiday and all. John didn’t want to hold the event with no catering, so we’re the lucky dip out of the phonebook. You didn’t hear him, Merry. He’s completely desperate.”
“Speed dating?!” Merry would be lying if he said he wasn’t intrigued, and he cursed the way that was weakening his resolve, though if he were completely honest, he knew that the desperation in his boss’s voice would get him eventually.
“C’mon, hon, name your terms …” Holly-Ann wheedled, as if sensing his move towards acquiescence, and Merry bit back a sigh, chewing the inside of his lip as he considered.
“Triple pay, a glass of champagne at midnight, Sasha to work with, and an extra hour’s wages in a show of goodwill,” he bargained.
“Done,” Holly-Ann responded promptly, and Merry blinked.
“Damn, that easy? I should have asked for a bottle, a rentboy, and a week off.”
Holly-Ann laughed. “And what would the man who’s currently single and moans constantly about being broke do with a week off?” she enquired, blithely ignoring the rentboy comment, as he had expected she would.
“Ouch.” Merry pressed a hand to his heart, uncaring that the hammy gesture was impossible to convey down the phone. “Kick me when I’m down, why don’t you? What time do you need me tonight?”
“HQ at five, clean and sober. You’ve slept your Christmas hangover off by now, yeah?” Now that she had him where she wanted him, Holly-Ann’s words turned teasing, transforming her into the woman who was more of a friend than a boss after seven years of working together.
“Oh, screw you!” Merry retorted, grin evident in his tone. “I’ll see you at five, darling.” He hung up without waiting for a response, then dropped the phone onto the bedside table, and flopped back against the pillows with a groan. Working New Year’s Eve again. Fucking fantastic.

Bottom Drawer Publications
February 14 


Wednesday, 13 February 2013

New Book Release - The Gift

Celebrate this Valentine's Day with the release of 
Book Three in the Valentine's Day Collection.

Elise Marion brings us back into the glittering world of Avery and Dom from The Secret Life of Avery O'Dea in The Gift. Avery has always thought that Dom knew her better than anyone else. Does the gift he buys her this Valentine's Day show that he really has no idea at all?

All film star Avery O’Dea has ever wanted is a normal home life outside of her career. Meeting Dominic Ramsey, albeit not through the best of circumstances, has made that dream a reality. A few months into their marriage, she’s finally living the kind of life she’s always wished for off-screen. So when their first Valentine’s Day comes around, she expects nothing less than what other girls get on the most romantic day of the year: chocolates, flowers, seduction … the works!

When Dominic Ramsay first met his beautiful wife, Avery, he was a struggling photographer and was able to devote much of his time to supporting her demanding career. Track forward twelve months and Dom is now very much in demand after successful showings of his work. He’s been offered the chance of a lifetime to work on a shoot in Paris and accepts the job, even though he’s been away from home a lot in recent times. Valentine’s Day is just commercialism gone mad, he reasons, and he’s sure Avery won’t mind that they celebrate on a different day.

Avery is crushed when the gift she receives from Dom makes her wonder if he knows her at all. Dom starts to wonder if Avery liked him better when he could devote much of his time to her. A chance meeting in an airport and advice from the most unlikely of sources just might make them realize what they have to hold on to and that the best gift of all is right under their noses?

The Gift is available for purchase now on our website:

Enjoy this excerpt from The Gift:

Excitement hummed through Dominic Ramsey’s veins as he peered over the windowsill into the bedroom decorated with modern furniture and done up in cool shades of white and mint green. The door to the bathroom was slightly ajar, and the steam wafting between it and the frame told him that someone was in the shower. He held his breath and watched, waited for a glimpse of golden, sun-tanned skin and vibrant red hair. Within less than a minute he was rewarded for his patience.

She appeared.
His body reacted instantly—as it always did when she was around—and the sight of her wrapped in nothing but a bath towel, her wet hair falling down past her shoulders, made him forget that he was standing outside in the dark and cold. He was hot, on fire for the little vixen toweling off her hair, humming in that off-key way of hers that never ceased to remind him why Avery O’Dea had been dubbed “America’s Sweetheart” years ago.
He reached for the Canon EOS 5D hanging from its strap around his wrist and raised it to his eye, zooming in on the delectable curves beneath the pristine, white towel. A few shutter clicks captured the image on his memory card to be wiped clean once he’d printed the image for his personal collection—one kept under lock and key to protect them from being stolen or sold to the media. He’d been jet setting in and out of town a lot over the last few months, and photos like these were all he had to keep him going when he was in New York, Chicago, or Miami on business.
Dominic paused, his hand holding the camera steady as the lens zoomed in on the bronzed goddess who had turned toward the window and was now staring straight at him. At least, he thought she was staring straight at him. Through the sheer, white curtains covering the window, it was hard to be certain. He liked thinking she could at least sense his presence, that she felt his eyes on her, and that she felt the same thrill at being watched as he did when his gaze followed those slender fingers of hers up to where the towel wrapped around her chest.
Avery turned her back to the window before dropping the towel; it pooled around her feet, leaving every taut muscle and supple curve bared to his view. It was at times like this that Dominic was thankful for the privacy of the exclusive Beverly Park neighborhood and the lush covering of palm trees and bushes that shielded his private little peep show from the view of passersby. His camera clicked a few more times as he slowly looked her over from head to toe, from the cascade of titian curls slipping through her fingers as she swept the curtain of her hair away from her shoulders, to the lines and planes of her toned back and perfectly round, high, and firm ass, down to the legs he wanted wrapped around his waist. He nearly lost it when his lens zoomed in on her feet and the candy red pumps she was wearing.
“Holy freaking hell,” he muttered under his breath as she bent at the waist, flipping her hair over her shoulder and giving him a glimpse of succulent, pink flesh from between those delectable, plump lower lips. His cock pressed against the front of his jeans, hard, insistent, the blood there beating a staccato rhythm in his veins in time with the pounding of his heart and thrumming of his pulse. He gritted his teeth and jerked at the collar of his sweater with one hand. Suddenly, the charcoal gray pea coat he’d thrown on after leaving his plane was stiflingly hot.
“Come on, baby,” he whispered, urging her on even though he knew she couldn’t hear him. “Touch yourself for me, sweetheart.”
As if she’d heard him, she straightened and turned, displaying high, palm-sized breasts, rose-petal pink nipples, a diamond-studded navel, and the scintillatingly bare triangle between softly flaring hips. Those long, dainty fingers traveled over her skin, starting at the delicate goblet of her stomach, and running up over her ribs, inch by torturous inch. Dominic’s breath caught in his throat, the rush of his blood roaring in his ears as those manicured digits found her pebbling nipples. She gasped softly as she rolled them between her thumbs and forefingers before lifting the mounds with both hands and giving them a light squeeze.
Dominic captured the image on film, although he knew he wouldn’t need to look at a photograph to remember this moment; her face, lips parted, eyes closed as she pleasured herself, was permanently etched into his memory. The fingers of his free hand clenched and unclenched spasmodically, itching for a feel of her skin.
“Lower baby, lower,” he encouraged, his eyes already zeroed in on the place he wanted to see her hand.
One hand still working a tight little nipple, the other roamed back down over her stomach, sliding over skin still sporting beads of water, some of which were rolling along her skin, tracing the path his fingertips longed to follow. His groan was in tune with her soft moan as her fingers made contact with the undoubtedly moist center of her core.
A few more clicks captured her in the erotic pose, the glistening petals of her core parted and bared to his view, begging for his touch and his tongue. She moaned again, louder this time, sending another wave of desire and need crashing through him and he decided that he couldn’t take anymore. Dropping his camera back into its case, he lifted it and his overnight bag into his hands and thrust them before him through the open window. They landed on the carpet with hardly a sound, and his black boots followed as he parted the curtains and hoisted his six-foot frame through the window.
She didn’t stop, her fingers gliding over her inner folds and dipping into her tight channel. The scent of her arousal wrapped around him and drew him toward her like a moth to a flame. He slung his coat on the floor and reached for the hem of his sweater, a wide, lazy smile crossing his face as he locked eyes with her deep blue ones, gone wide and dark with desire. He trembled as her lower lip disappeared between her teeth and she reached for him.
“Honey,” he said, his voice husky with need, “I’m home.”

Bottom Drawer Publications
February 13