*RELEASE BLITZ* ~ Captive (The Druid Chronicles #2), by Christina Phillips

#erotic #historical #romance #captor #captive

Adult/18+ read

BK2 Captive Large

Yay! Christina Phillips is celebrating the re-release of Captive, book 2 in her fabulous Druid Chronicles. Captor/captive romances are one of my favourite themes and Captive and the other books in this erotic historical romance series are ones that you will want to read again and again. Bren and Morwyn, the hero and heroine in this novel are both strong characters and their tempestuous relationship truly sizzles. The books evoke the time period perfectly and are beautifully written erotic romances. To find out more and for a chance to read the first chapter read on.❤

Book Blurb

A Druid priestess falls for the wrong man – the warrior who’s taken her prisoner…

Hungry for revenge, Druid acolyte Morwyn turns her back on her goddess and vows to fight the Roman invaders. But before she can join up with the rebels, she’s captured by a tough Gaul mercenary.

Bren, pledged to the true Briton king, has spent three years undercover in the Roman Legion. When his own unit attacks a fiery Celtic beauty, he saves her the only way he can – by claiming her as his prisoner. He knows he can’t trust her but, as her icy disdain thaws, her quick wit and infectious laugh lighten his blackened soul and he craves for the chance of a normal life–with her.

Infuriated yet intrigued by her captor, Morwyn can’t help falling for his gruff charms and rare smile. He’s her enemy but he has honor and the longer they’re together the less she believes in his brutal reputation. He’s her Gaul, and in the black of night, in his arms, she dreams of a future together.

But the wrath of a spurned goddess echoes through the land and Morwyn and Bren need to overcome their past, put their trust in each other and face their deepest fears for the chance to survive in a fractured world.

Previously published by Penguin US in 2011

Read Chapter One

Captive graphic

Buy Links

  iBooks Amazon   |   B & N   |   Kobo

Captive is the second book in The Druid Chronicles, with sexy alpha warriors and their mystical Druid heroines.

#1 Forbidden

   iBooks   |   Amazon   |   B&N   |  ARe  |  Kobo

#2 Captive

#3 Enslaved

Release date 3rd October 2016

#4 Tainted

Release date 7th November 2016

Each book can be read as a standalone. There are no cliffhangers!

Bio

Christina Phillips is an ex-pat Brit who now lives in sunny Western Australia with her high school sweetheart and their family. She enjoys writing contemporary, historical and paranormal romance where the stories sizzle and the heroine brings her hero to his knees.

She is addicted to good coffee, expensive chocolate and bad boy heroes. She is also owned by three gorgeous cats who are convinced the universe revolves around their needs. They are not wrong.

Keep in touch with Christina

Website   |   Facebook   |   Twitter

If you’d like to receive notification of when my next book is released, sign up for my Newsletter

 

 

**BOOK BLITZ** ~ Prisoner, by Skye Warren and Annika Martin (includes excerpts and super giveaway!!!)

Young Adult, Dark Erotic Romance 18+

PrisonerBlitzBanner

I have been waiting impatiently for the release of this dark erotic romance, a collaboration between Skye Warren and Annika Martin and I’m over the moon to be able to share the book blurb and a couple of smexy excerpts with you today!

The authors  have also been very generous  in allowing each blog participating in the blitz to host a giveaway (and that includes us YAY!). The lucky winner will win one e-book copy of On the Way Home by Skye Warren and one e-book copy of The Kinky Bank Robbers boxed set by Annika Martin. Open internationally. For a chance of to winning the giveaway on our blog scroll down and follow the details at the bottom of this post. Tina ❤

Book & Author Details:

Prisoner by Annika Martin & Skye Warren
Publication date: October 23rd 2014
Genres: New Adult, Romance
prisoner

Synopsis:

He seethes with raw power the first time I see him—pure menace and rippling muscles in shackles. He’s dangerous. He’s wild. He’s the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen.

So I hide behind my prim glasses and my book like I always do, because I have secrets too. Then he shows up in the prison writing class I have to teach, and he blows me away with his honesty. He tells me secrets in his stories, and it’s getting harder to hide mine. I shiver when he gets too close, with only the cuffs and the bars and the guards holding him back. At night I can’t stop thinking about him in his cell.

But that’s the thing about an animal in a cage—you never know when he’ll bite. He might use you to escape. He might even pull you into a forest and hold a hand over your mouth so you can’t call for the cops. He might make you come so hard, you can’t think.

And you might crave him more than your next breath.

“Sexy, dark and thrilling. I loved every second of it!” – New York Times bestselling author Katie Reus

Goodreads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23303963-prisoner?ac=1

Purchase Links

Amazon US   Amazon UK

Excerpt 1 

Heavy bars close behind me with a clang. I feel the sound in my bones. A series of mechanical clicks hint at an elaborate security mechanism beneath the black iron plating. I knew this would happen—had anticipated and dreaded it—but my breathing quickens with the knowledge that I am well and truly trapped.

 “Can I help you?”

 I whirl to face the administrative window where a heavyset woman in a security guard uniform stares at her screen.

 “Hi,” I say, pasting on a smile. “My name is Abigail Winslow, and I’m here to—”

 “Two forms of identification.”

 “Oh, well, I already filled out the paperwork at the front desk. And showed them my IDs.”

 “This isn’t the front desk, Ms. Winslow. This is the east-wing desk, and I need to see two forms of identification.”

 “Right.” I dig through my bag for my driver’s license and passport.

 She accepts them without looking up, then hands me a clipboard with a stack of papers just like the ones I’d already filled out.

 I’ve been dreading this day for weeks, wishing I’d been assigned any other project but this one. You’d think I was being sent here for a crime. My professor—the one who’d forced me into this—warned me that prisoners were not always receptive to outsiders. Apparently nobody here is.

 I complete each form, arrange the pages neatly on the clipboard, and bring them back up to the window. The guard accepts them and gives back my IDs…still without looking at me.

 My hands clench and unclench, clench and unclench while the guard eyes my paperwork.

Seconds pass. Or are they minutes? The damp chill of the place seeps in through my cardigan and leaves me shivering.

 Leaning forward, I read the name tag of the guard. “Ms. Breck. Do you know what the next steps are?”

 “You can have a seat. I have work to do now, and then I’ll escort you back.”

 “Oh, okay.” I glance at the bars I just came through, then the open hallway opposite. “Actually, if you just point me in the direction of the library, I’m sure I can—”

 The woman’s hand hits the desk. I jump. Her dark eyes are faintly accusing, and I wish we could go back to no eye contact. How did I manage to make an enemy in two minutes?

 “Ms. Winslow,” she says, her voice patronizing.

 “You can call me Abby,” I whisper.

 A slight smile. Not a nice one. “Ms. Winslow, what do you think we do here?”

 The question is clearly rhetorical. I press my lips together to keep from making things worse.

 “The Kingman Correctional Facility houses over five thousand convicted criminals. My job is to keep it that way. Do we understand each other?”

Heat floods my cheeks. The last thing I want to do is make her job harder. “Right. Of course.” I shamble back, landing hard on the metal folding chair. It wobbles a little before the rubber feet stop my slide. 

I understand the woman’s point. She has to keep the prisoners in and everyone else out, and keep people like me safe.

 I reach down and pull a book from my bag. I never leave home without one, even when I go to classes or run errands. Even when I was young and my mother used to take me on her rounds.

Especially then.

I would hide in the backseat with my nose in the book, pretending I didn’t see the shady people who came to her window when we stopped.

A little green light above the barred doors flashes on and there’s an ominous buzz. Somebody’s coming through, and I doubt it will be a library volunteer. I slide down.

Pretend to be invisible.

It’s no use. I peer over the top edge as a prisoner saunters through the door, and my pulse slams in my throat double time.

He’s flanked by two guards—escorted by them, I guess you’d say. But they seem more like an entourage than anything. Power vibrates around him like a threat.

Read, read, read. Don’t look.

The prisoner is half a foot taller than the guards, but he seems to tower over them by more than that. Maybe it’s his broad shoulders or just something about the way he stands, or his imperiously high cheekbones. The dark stubble across his cheeks looks so rough and unforgiving I can feel it against my palm; it contrasts wildly with the plushness of his lips. His short brown hair is mussed. There’s one scar through his eyebrow that somehow adds to his perfection.

The little group approaches the window. I can barely breathe.

“ID number 85359,” one of the guards says, and I understand that he’s referring to the prisoner. That’s who he is. Not John Smith or William Brown or whatever his name is. He’s been reduced to a number. The woman at the desk runs through a series of questions. It’s a procedure for checking him out of solitary.

The prisoner faces sideways, spine straight, the corner of his mouth tilted up as if he’s slightly amused. Then it clicks, what else is so different about him: no visible tattoos. Tough guys like this, they’re always inked up—it’s a kind of armor, a kind of fuck you. This guy has none of it, though he’s far from pristine; white scars mar the rough skin of his hands and especially his forearms, a latticework of pain and violence, a flag proclaiming the kind of underworld he came from.

The feel of brutality that hangs about him is compelling and…somehow beautiful.

I drink him in from behind my book—it’s my mask, my protective shield. But then the strangest thing happens: he cocks his head. It’s just a slight shift, but I feel his attention on me deep in my belly. I’ve been discovered. Caught by searchlights. Exposed.

My heart beats frantically.

I want him to look away. He fills up too much space. It’s as if he breathes enough oxygen for twelve men, leaving no air for me at all. Maybe if we were in the library and he needed help finding a book or looking something up, then I wouldn’t mind the weight of his gaze.

No. Not even there. He’s too much.

Two sets of bars on the gate. Handcuffs. Two guards.

What do they think he would do if there were only one set of bars, one guard?

My blood races as the guards draw him away from the window and toward the inner door, toward where I sit. His heat pierces the chill around me as he nears. His deep brown eyes never once meet mine, but I have the sense of him looming over me as he passes, like a tree with a massive canopy. He continues on, two hundred pounds of masculine danger wrapped in all that beauty.

Even in chains, he seems vibrant, wild and free, a force of nature—it makes me feel like I’m the one in prison. Safe. Small. Carefully locked down.

How would it feel to be that free?

“Ms. Winslow. Ms. Winslow.”

I jump, surprised to hear that the woman has been calling my name. “I’m sorry,” I say as a strange sensation tickles the back of my neck.

 The woman stands and begins pulling on her jacket. “I’ll take you to the library now.”

 “Oh, that’s great.”

 That shivery sensation gets stronger. Against my better judgment, I look down the hallway where the guards and the prisoner are walking off as one—a column of orange flanked by two thinner, shorter posts.

The prisoner glances over his shoulder. His mocking brown gaze searches me out, pins me with a subtle threat. Though it isn’t his eyes that scare me. It’s his lips—those beautiful, generous lips forming words that make my blood race.

Winslow.

No sound comes out, but I feel as though he’s whispered my name right into my ear. Then he turns and strolls off. 

Excerpt 2

I’m coughing, wheezing. I had asthma as a kid, and that’s what it feels like now as the pepper spray stings me all the way down. “Get off!” I gasp. “You’re too heavy—I can’t—get air.” 

“It’s the spray you hit me with,” he says. “Breathe normal.” 

I gasp for air, panicking. “I can’t!” Is this how I die? Suffocation? 

“Pretend,” he says, letting up his knee. He shifts so that he’s straddling my back. He grips my wrists now, pressing them above my head, and I feel his boots locked over my thighs. His weight is off my back. “It’s something every thug like me knows, how to not breathe in the fucking Mace.” 

I choke and cough. I still can’t breathe. He’s going to let me die. He’s going to sit on me and watch me die.

 “Relax,” he says softly. “You’re making it worse by panicking.”

Hoarsely, I try to get air. The sounds scare me. I really can’t breathe. I suck faster as the panic rises.

“Hey,” he whispers. “Shhh.” He brings his head near mine, breath tickling the back of my neck. “Pepper spray is an inflammatory agent, okay? It swells your throat and sinuses, but it doesn’t shut them.”

 I gasp.

 He continues to speak in his calm, strangely soothing voice. Why is he soothing me? I can feel him rattling against my defenses with every word. “You’re still getting air, okay? Focus on that, Ms. Winslow. That little passage of air you can still breathe through. Slow it down now, got it?”

I can’t slow it down. It’s like I don’t know how to breathe anymore, and I’m shaking.

 And suddenly he’s stretching his big body over me, on top of me. His weight isn’t entirely on me, or else I’d be squished; it’s more of a dull weight, as though he’s holding himself against me, warming me, pressing me to the forest floor. Into my ear he whispers, “Breathe with me.”

 I suck in a faint breath. “Get off me, you caveman!” Why is he even trying to help me? 

“You’re okay, baby,” he says. “Match my breath.” 

I feel his chest expand against my shoulder blades. He’s like a big, warm animal on me. I twist, but there’s no moving. He presses down harder, and something about his weight soothes me. I hate that he’s actually calming me, helping me. I don’t want him to make me feel good—he’s my enemy.

 I wheeze lightly. 

He breathes on, hot and slow against me. A bird calls in the distance. I can hear the hum of the highway, the drone of a helicopter. My eyes tear, and my limbs feel floppy and warm, and suddenly I’m doing it—I’m breathing. I take an almost regular breath.

“There you go,” he whispers.

“Fuck you. I don’t want your help.” I gasp in another breath.

His whisper caresses my cheek. “Nice and slow, Ms. Winslow.” There’s something sensual in the way he says it. “Nice and slow.”

 He breathes again, as if to demonstrate. On the next breath I match him. Soon we’re breathing together. It’s strangely intimate, like we’re two wounded creatures under the forest canopy. It’s almost like dancing. 

Almost like having sex.

 I crane my head around just enough to see that he still has his eyes shut tight, dark eyelashes wet with tears from the irritation of the spray. Did I hurt him? Did I burn his eyes?

 “Stop moving around,” he growls. “Lie still.”

 Like I have any choice with him pinning me. My heart pounds under his weight.

 Breathe in, breathe out.

 It’s as if we’re in some kind of time-out, a no-man’s-land with the two of us fucked up and lying on the forest floor on a bed of pine needles that actually feels sort of soft and nice. The moments stretch on and on. I wonder how long it will take him to recover.

 Maybe I really injured his eyes. Could I have hurt his eyes permanently?

He shifts, and I think maybe he’s getting up. But he doesn’t.

In a weird way I’m glad. If he got off me, that would end this strange, relaxing time out. It would bring back the harsh reality of who we are to each other.

For now, there’s nothing I can do with him lying on my back, and I let my limbs go soft, let my breathing calm, giving myself permission to relax. I feel like jelly suddenly, spread underneath him, spine flattened out. Us breathing together.

My eyes drift closed. The warm patch on my neck feels lit up every time he breathes out, and I imagine his lips hovering just over my skin.

 I imagine him kissing me there, and a wave of forbidden feeling swells through my core.

 My eyes fly open. There is no way I’m turned on.

 Except I am.

 My heart races. My breath gets fitful again.

 “Hey,” he says. And then more softly. “You’re okay.”

I become aware of a hardness against my thigh. An erection. A melty sensation pulses through my pelvis. I’m trembling deep down, and it’s not just fear; it’s excitement.

 Horrified, I try to shake him off, and he tightens his legs and arms around me. I feel his weight and warmth keenly now. “You don’t want to give me any more trouble, do you?” 

“No,” I whisper huskily.

The energy of sex runs wild between us, and I don’t know how to stop it. Does he know? I flash back on him in the prison waiting room, the way he looked at me, and all that power and beauty barely contained in shackles. How stupid I was to think he was beautiful.

“No, you don’t want to give me trouble,” he affirms. “So we’re going to stay just like this until my eyes can recover.”

“So you can kill me? 

“If I was going to kill you,” he says, warm and tickly beneath my earlobe, “don’t you think you’d be dead?” There’s something about the way he says this that makes my belly quiver, and I can’t stop focusing on his erection. His big, strong heart beats against my back, beating my heart like we’re conjoined in some primitive way. 

His breath feels soft on the side of my neck, and heaven help me, I want to feel more of him. I imagine his skin on my skin. Dimly I’m aware that my breath is changing, speeding, shallowing. 

I stiffen as he presses his lips to the warm spot; it’s a kind of kiss. Or is it? And then he whispers, “Penny for your thoughts, Ms. Winslow.” 

Oh God, he knows. This man who’s going to kill me, this man I’ve been breathing with, he knows. 

 Author Bios

Annika

Annika

I’m a NYT bestselling author living a stone’s throw away from the Mississippi with my awesome husband and two cats in a home full of plants, sunshine and books. I’m heavy into writing love stories about criminals–some of them are dirty and fun (my Kinky bank robbers!) others are dark and intense (Prisoner!)I also write gritty romantic suspense as the RITA-award winning author Carolyn Crane.

Author links:

http://annikamartinbooks.com/

https://www.facebook.com/AnnikaMartinBooks

https://twitter.com/Annika_Martin

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5826888.Annika_Martin

Skye 

Skye Warren is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author of dark romantic fiction. Her books are raw, sexual and perversely tender. For those new to her work, consider the bestseller Wanderlust or Don’t Let Go.

Author links:

http://www.skyewarren.com/

https://www.facebook.com/skyewarren

https://twitter.com/skye_warren

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5339130.Skye_Warren

Giveaway 

The winner of the giveaway on our blog will win one e-book copy of On the Way Home by Skye Warren and one e-book copy of The Kinky Bank Robbers boxed set by Annika Martin. Open internationally. To enter it’s easy – just leave a comment on this post with your email address by November 10th, the closing date for the giveaway on this blog. You can also enter by leaving your name against this post on our FB page. A winner will be selected at random and contacted after this date and their prize will be sent out after November 18th.

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Captured (The Captive Series Book 1) by Erica Stevens

 Captured (The Captive, #1)

Captivating Vampire Romance

 My sister recommended this book to me, knowing that I like a good vampire romance and I’m glad that she did as I found it to be a really entertaining read. It has an interesting take on vampires and is a sweet romance, with enough potential for violence and evil to satisfy my darker needs!

The world of Captive, is set in the future where vampires have come out of hiding and have gained supremacy over the humans who are either subservient to them or live on the fringes of society in the woods and caves, forming part of a human resistance. Arianna, daughter of rebel leader, is captured and sold to Prince Braith as a blood slave. Arianna is kept captive in the Prince’s apartment at the palace. Despite her status as blood slave she is treated well by Braith, and they form a friendship, which develops into more, although they both in their own way struggle with their feelings. Relationships between masters and their blood slaves are forbidden and both Braith and Arianna realise that there is no future for them.

Just as they begin to acknowledge their mutual attraction, the return of Braith’s younger brother, Jericho, after an  absence of six years, leads to shocking revelations, impacting on Braith’s and Arianna’s burgeoning relationship and paving the way for Book 2 in the series.

Although Arianna is young, 17, compared to Braith’s 952 years, she is a strong heroine.  Indeed, she was captured whilst saving a small boy from the vampires. When being put on the auctioneer’s platform to be sold, at first she prefers death, to the constant torment of being purchased and used as a blood slave. However, once she discovers that her childhood friend Max has also been captured, she resolves to help him escape. I loved how she was captivated by the beauty of the palace and its gardens, which contain luxuries she has never before experienced. Arianna is at first suspicious of Braith’s motives in being so kind to her, fearing that he plans to gain her trust, only to then cruelly destroy her. She comes to care for the prince against her better judgement.

Braith, the first born prince, has a fearsome reputation and demands respect. I liked the fact that although he was instantly drawn to Arianna and was compelled to purchase her, it was not for the usual reason in vampire romances – he does not immediately desire to mate with her or dominate her sexually for example! Indeed, she is not the type of woman he is usually attracted to. However, she does have a strong physical effect on him, which I will not divulge here as it would spoil the book for those who wish to read it.

He is both protective and possessive of Arianna, although there are scenes where he does dominate her and barely keeps his violence in check. He is also fearful of her being taken away from him if anyone discovers that she is anything more to him than a blood slave. I loved how he became increasingly attracted to Arianna, begining to empathise with her. He does not desire anyone else’s blood but hers, but at the same time will not force his attentions on her. Braith recognises the importance of gaining Arianna’s trust and it is this that he wants in the end more than her blood, which I found to be endearing.

There are many tender scenes between Braith and Arianna in the book. The tale is different from many vampire novels I have read in that the relationship between the hero and heroine is a slow burn, rather than them jumping into bed with each other from the start. However, I did not think that this detracted from the romance and it made it all the more meaningful. For example, I found that the scene where they experienced their first kiss and was very moving. Moreover, the level of heat certainly increases as the plot develops.

The main secondary characters in the book included the human Max, Caleb, Braith’s brother and Jericho, the youngest of his brothers. Max seeks to help Arianna escape. He believes all vampires are evil and his experience of being a blood slave is vastly different from Arianna’s. Caleb is pure evil and suspicious of Braith’s relationship with Arianna and Braith takes special care with how he treats Arianna when he is present. Jericho, who returns after an absence of six years is an interesting character. Whilst Braith is wary of Caleb and his motives, he feels more affinity with Jericho. However, it is Jericho’s actions, not those of Caleb, that have a profound impact on Braith and Arianna’s relationship at the end of the book and set the scene for the next instalment.

I enjoyed the author’s writing style, which was fresh and direct. The story flowed easily and at its core focused on the relationship between the two main characters, which I liked, whilst still making me want to know about the world they inhabited and the other characters. I will certainly be purchasing book 2 in the series very soon as I am eager to learn what happens next. I would recommend this book to readers of all ages from young adult upwards, especially those who enjoy a good vampire romance.

Reviewed by Tina Williams

Author’s website http://ericasteven.blogspot.co.uk

Cover art by www.EbookLaunch.com and image used by kind permission of Erica Stevens