Category Archives: Alpha Hero

#SundaySnippet 3.7.2020

I love when characters get into each other’s heads, don’t you? In this scene from A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: RICK, Abby Laine is digging deep into Rick’s motives. Her questions prove a little too spot on for his comfort. Enjoy~

 

“She definitely had some angels on her shoulders today,” she said after taking a sip. “I wish her son could be at the hospital with her. I’m so worried about him. About what his father could be doing to him.”

Rick’s stomach clenched. “Do you think he’d hurt the kid?”

“He has in the past. That’s what finally prompted Lila to leave. For a reason I will never understand, she tolerated being hit by her husband, but the moment he laid a hand on their child, she knew she had to leave. Why she bore being abused is beyond me.”

“Maybe as an adult, she figured she could take it. Not so her kid.”

Abby shook her head as she stirred the contents of the wok. “You can hit me but not my child? That’s convoluted thinking and shows how little we’ve really evolved as a society. Unfortunately, I see too many instances like this in my practice. Women, who for whatever reason, are convinced they deserve to be treated abominably, that a marriage license gives their husbands the right to hit them. The legal right.” She shook her head again. As she stirred the chicken around the wok, it popped and sizzled over the heated oil.

A flash of himself at eight, his parents’ screaming voices above him, pushed to the front of his mind. The resounding thwack of the back of his father’s hand striking his mother’s cheek was as loud and terrifying to hear in his head now as it had been then. Rick took a deep breath and shoved the memory back down.

He took a large swig of the water. “Any calls from your cop buddy? Updates?”

“I checked when I was getting changed. Nothing.” She sighed and then tossed two wrappers into the now- boiling pot of water. “In a minute, everything will be ready,” she said. “The rice needs to set.”

“That’s rice? It’s the wrong color.”

“You’ve never seen brown rice before?”

“Seen it. Had it. Just didn’t know it came in wrappers.”

This time she didn’t try to hide her grin. “If you tell Kandy, I’ll deny it until my dying breath.”

“Tell her what?”

With another subtle eye roll, Abby said, “That I take shortcuts. If Kandy was making this meal, the rice would have soaked in warm water for an hour, then would have been cooked in a rice steamer for another. I don’t have two spare hours. This”—she pointed to the pot—“is quick rice. Something I don’t think my darling chef sister has ever prepared. You know Kandy. She never uses commercial products. Everything is fresh, raw, and unprocessed.”

“Truth. And don’t forget delicious.”

“To use your word, truth. But cooking is what she lives for. I cook so I won’t starve, and most of the time I’m in a time crunch. So”—she waved a hand— “shortcuts.”

“As long as it tastes good and I didn’t have to make it, I don’t care how long it took to prepare.”

“Which is why takeout was invented for people like you. Here we go. All set.”

She spooned the chicken mixture onto a serving plate and, using tongs, pulled the rice from the pot, sliced the sides open, and poured the grains into a bowl.

“Take these to the table.” She handed him the food. “I’ll get plates and utensils.”

Once they were settled, Rick dug in.

After eating in silence for a few moments, he said, “This is good. Really good.”

Abby laughed. “Surprised, are you?”

“Impressed. This tastes like our favorite chef- lebrity made it.”

“She hates being called that, you know.”

“And still…” He lifted a hand.

God. You’re such a pain.”
He could see the humor skirting in her eyes.

“You’ve called me that before. Several times over the years, including on Kandy’s wedding day.”

The moment he said it he knew her mind traveled back to the same memory of the day as his did: their kiss. Her beautiful blue eyes widened, then narrowed, a thin worry line creasing the spot between her sculpted brows. The little flush of heat pinking her cheeks was the same color as her fuzzy socks.

Who knew she was so easy to tease? And why did it give him such a kick to see the nervous little shake of her head when he did?

“You were being an exceptional pain in the butt that day. If I remember correctly you called us minions. Not exactly a flattering phrase, Bannerman.”

He leaned back in the chair and took a chug from the water bottle. “Just calling it like I saw it. What description would you have preferred?”

“Attendants is the appropriate term. Bridal attendants. Calling us minions made us seem like mindless…lemmings.”

He laughed out loud. “From where I was standing, that’s exactly what you all were, although I wouldn’t call you mindless. You were all dressed identically, did everything together as a unit, and were at Kandy’s beck and call. She said jump, you all asked how high.”

“That’s what we were supposed to do. Our job was to make sure Kandy’s day ran smoothly, with no worries. Haven’t you ever been in a wedding party?”

“Nope. I’ve been lucky to miss that experience so far.”

Her mouth pursed around her fork. “Do you even have friends?” she asked after swallowing.

“ ’Course I have friends. What kind of a question is that?”

“Aside from Josh.”

Well…

“You don’t give off a ‘let’s get together and have a beer’ vibe, you know.”

Intrigued, he asked, “Really? What kind of vibe do I give off?”
When she didn’t respond, he pressed. “Come on, Abigail. You can’t leave me hanging.”

“Right there.” She aimed her fork at him as if it were a spear. “Perfect example. You know I hate being called Abigail. I’ve lost count of the hundreds of times I’ve told you and you still do it, knowing it pisses me off. And”—she cut him off before he could speak— “your usual response is to lift your hands and say ‘and still’ when you’re called on it. Who does that? What kind of person persistently and purposefully annoys people?”

“So you’re saying I’m intentionally annoying?”

“Persistently, so. Yes. Makes the lawyer in me wonder why.”

Just the lawyer?

“Any answers come to mind?”

“Plenty.”

“Care to share?”
She placed her fork down next to her plate and regarded him across the table. “You really want to hear this? Because if you know anything about me, you know I’m truthful. I don’t hold back.”

Oh, he was sure she didn’t. And wouldn’t. Her tenacity was one of the things he’d first been drawn to. That and her fabulous ass.

“I’m a big boy,” he said with a grin. “I can take it.

She took a sip of water first, her eyes trained on him the entire time. “Okay. If you really want to hear this.”

He waved his hand for her to continue.

“I think you use your cocky, aren’t-I-simply-too- witty attitude to keep people at a distance. You’re guarded. Emotionally. Like you don’t want to get close to anyone. You don’t want people diving in too deep, digging under the surface to see the real you. You don’t allow people to get to know you. Really know you.”

Because she came a little too close for comfort, Rick reached for his water.

“You never talk about yourself. Ever. Every time I’ve been in your presence at any function, barbecue, whatever”—she swiped a hand in the air—“you’re always the one asking questions. Probing. Being nosy. But when you’re asked a question, a personal one, you deflect and redirect.”

It was true. He never talked about himself. The army shrink he’d been forced to see had told him point blank he was fearful of rejection, afraid if people knew the real him, they’d run for the hills or in the opposite direction and want nothing to do with him. She hadn’t been too far off the mark.

“Did you ever think it’s because I feel people are more interesting than I am?”

“I’m calling bullshit, Bannerman.”

Again, because it was true, he had no real response. She cocked her head and pierced him with what he was now and forever going to call her lawyer death stare. “I don’t know anything personal about you,” she said. “We met four years ago, have been together dozens of times over the years, yet until today I didn’t even know where you lived. If it weren’t for Gemma, I wouldn’t know you’d been in the army.”

“You’ve discussed me with your sister?” Why did knowing that give him such a rush of delicious pleasure?

Abby waved a hand in the air again. “She mentioned it one night after she’d done some photography work for you on a surveillance job. About how you were much better suited to the boring wait- around-for-something-to-happen of surveillance work than she’d ever be because you were—her word— stealthy. It was probably because you’d been a sniper in the army, she said.”

Rick shook his head. He’d forgotten he’d told Abby’s younger sister about his army stint. It came out one day, unbidden, when he’d taken her target shooting at the practice range.

“I would never have known if she hadn’t told me. I didn’t even think to ask if you’ve got a gun with you.”

After a few moments, he nodded. “It’s in my duffle. But don’t worry. I don’t need the gun to protect you.”

Duh. The gun business aside, you’re partners with my brothers-in-law, but I don’t know if you’ve ever been married or divorced. If you have any kids. Living parents. It’s as if you don’t want people to know anything about you. To know you. Or to like you. Almost as if you go out of your way to make sure they don’t.”

This conversation was getting entirely too close for comfort. He wished he’d never pressed her into explaining.

From the corner of his gaze, he saw the cat hobbling into the room, beelining for her mother. He reached a hand down as she skittered by and grazed her fluffy back. Moonlight stopped, turned, and moved as his fingers trailed across her back again. When she did it a third time, Rick smirked across the table.

“Well, your cat likes me, so I can’t be all bad.” He reached over and single-handedly pulled the animal up to his lap, surprised she was so light. From the girth of hair on her, he figured she’d be heavy. “You really are a furball, aren’t you?” The rub of his finger across her neck had the cat running like a motorized propeller again.

He glanced across the table. “What’s the look for?”

She immediately blanked her face, grabbed up the last bits of her chicken with her fork, and shoved it through her lips.

Intrigued? You can get your copy here: Amazon //B&N //Ibooks//  Booksamillion

Until next time ~ Peg

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#SDSXXTours @RomanceNovelGiv A PRIDE OF BROTHERS:RICK

I’m still on my book tour and today I’m visiting one of my favorite places ROMANCE NOVEL GIVEWAYS. They asked me a question I get asked a lot as a writer and wrote about it for them,  here.

So stop by, read all about it and enter the rafflelcopter the tour set up for me. And if you do visit, please leave a comment so I can chat with ya!

Until next time ~ Peg

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Filed under A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: RICK, Alpha Hero, Alpha Male, Romance, Romance Books, romantic suspense

#WeeklyWrapup I’ve been all over the blogging map this week!

It’s no secret if you follow my blog that I’ve got a brand new series starting on Monday, 1.13.20 titled A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: RICK. It’s a new romantic suspense trilogy about a private eye firm run by brothers ( hence, the name. Heehee)

I’ll be all over the place promoting it for the next month, but this past week I started my own little tour and visited a bunch of fabulous authors who volunteered to help me get the word out about the book – love them all. At each stop I told you all a little more about the book, how it came to be, what my inspiration for writing it was, and a bit more about my writing quirks.

So, if you missed any of these, here’s a recap of where I was all week with the links included so you can visit me. Better late than never, I always say.

On Monday, January 6, I visited WRP sistah Alana Lorens

On Tuesday, January 7, I hopped over to another wonderful WRP sistah, author Judith Sterling.

Wednesday, January 8th, brought me to WRP writer and friend Jennifer Wilck

Thursday, January 9th I flew over to WRP sistah Amber Dalton

Friday, January 10 I made it all the way over to Jeny Heckman’s blog

Today, Saturday Januray 11, I’m camping over with  author D.V.Stone starting at 7am ESt.

I was thrilled when the book was featured on Pretty-Hot.com, too, on January 6.

So, stop by and catch up and then stop back here next week because I’ll be starting a SILVER DAGGER TOUR that features giveaways and Gift Cards, so you won’t want to miss out on that.

Until next time ~ Peg

Blurb:

Elite bodyguard and P.I. Rick Bannerman’s job is to protect. He doesn’t get emotional with his clients, but when a woman from his past is threatened, his next job becomes personal.

Family lawyer Abigail Laine is the target of a client’s vengeful husband, but refuses Rick’s offer of protection. He walked away from her four years ago, and she swore to forget him.

Now her reluctance to accept his help could cost Abby her life.

Preorder your copy here before it releases on 1.13.20

Amazon //B&N // ibooks //Books-a-million

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Filed under A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: RICK, Alpha Hero, Alpha Male, Romance, Romance Books, romantic suspense

How A PRIDE OF BROTHERS: RICK came to be….

I’m visiting fellow WRP author Alana Lorens today, talking about my inspiration for RICK BANNERMAN. I wasn’t always going to write his story…come find out why: APoB:R

And RICK drops one week from today! Have you ordered your copy yet? Here, let me make it easy for you ( heehee)

Amazon // B&N // i-books // Books-a-million

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#SundaySnippet 8.18.19

Last week I brought you a little sumthin’ from my upcoming WRP release of TODAY, TOMORROW, ALWAYS. This week, I have another new WRP release coming out SOON from a new series called PRIDE OF BROTHERS. The first book is Rick’s Story.

Rick Bannerman’s job is to protect. An elite bodyguard and P.I., he’s used to denying his emotions and ignoring his feelings in order to keep those in his care safe, at all costs. When lawyer Abigail Laine becomes the target of a vengeful client, Rick slips in to protection mode even though Abby refuses his help.

Four years ago Rick left Abby standing on a balcony alone, after walking away from a kiss that sent them both reeling. His refusal stung, and Abby’s sworn to forget it so she can protect her heart and move on with her life. But now she needs Rick’s professional help and her reluctance to accept it could just cost her her life.

Can these two stubborn and independent people put their troubled past behind them and learn to trust one another?

Excerpt:

Rick was seated on the couch, his laptop on the table in front of him, an open bag of potato chips next to it.

“Where did those come from?”

“They were in the bag from Kandy,” he told her never looking up from his typing. “Josh took pity on me and sneaked them in.”

She pulled a bottle of water from the fridge. “Why would Josh need to take pity on you?”

If shamefaced had a proper name, it would be Rick, because that’s exactly the expression he wore on his face at her question. His shoulders curled forward a little, his neck almost disappearing into them. The tips of his ears turned ruddy, and he cleared his throat a few times before reaching for his own water bottle and taking a good chug.

He wouldn’t meet her eyes.

“Answer me,” she commanded when he put the bottle back down on the table.

She watched his neck work and couldn’t decide which emotion was stronger: the need to hear the answer to her question, or the desire to crawl into his lap and lick his neck—and every other part of him.

It was a testament to her analytical training that she opted for an answer.

“Maybe pity was the wrong word.”

Abby waited.

Rick scrubbed his hands through his hair and cupped the back of his neck. “Fine, but don’t get all pissy when I tell you, okay?”

For an answer, she cocked one of her eyebrows and dropped her chin.

“When we were over there, I happened to mention to Josh you don’t keep any junk food in the house. No cake, no chips, pretzels. Nothing to snack on.”

“Not true. I always have cut fruit in the fridge.”

The breath he blew between his lips told her what he thought of fruit as a snack. “Like I said, nothing to snack on. I kind of told him I was, you know, going through withdrawal, from the lack.”

She couldn’t help it: she laughed.

Rick straightened up in his seat, his eyes squinting at her. “You don’t have to laugh at me. You did ask.”

“How old are you?”

“What does my age have to do with anything?”

“You just said you were going through withdrawal because you haven’t had crappy snacks to munch on. Don’t—” She held a hand up to him to silence what he’d been about to say. “The stuff you like is crappy from a nutrition standpoint. The last time I heard someone complain like you was my nephew Declan when were all at the beach last month. He’s nine. Which is the age I’d expect a kid to be who’s made a statement like you just did.”

Rick shook his head. “I knew you were gonna get pissy.”

“I’m not being pissy because I eat food that’s actually good for me. You don’t live here, Rick. I do. You can fill your apartment to the ceiling with junk food and I won’t care, but this is my home, my space, and I don’t stock it full of bad food choices.”

“Why are you so hyper-vigilant and OCD about snacky stuff? It’s not gonna kill you to have a cupcake or some cheese puffs, you know.”

“Spoken like a man who can eat whatever he wants.”

“The hell does that mean?”

“It means you don’t need to worry about your weight. Ever. You’ve never struggled with an extra ounce of body fat in your life, Rick. I know that for fact. You have no idea what it’s like to count every calorie and watch every single thing that goes into your mouth because of the inevitability it’s going to wind up on your ass. I do. I wasn’t blessed with my grandmother’s metabolism like Kandy and most of my sisters. Ellie and I take after our dad’s side. We’re the only ones who do. One more thing to despise about him,” she added, pursing her lips. “I’ve had to deny myself food everyone else can eat with abandon since my teens. And it’s a struggle. A monumental one. I’m strong-willed, but sometimes willpower can only go so far, which is why I keep healthy foods around me so if I do snack, at least it’s on something I won’t obsess over about the calorie count.”

She took a long pull from her water bottle.

Rick’s gaze stayed on her while she drank. He didn’t seem embarrassed any more. In truth, she couldn’t tell what was behind that penetrating stare of his. She placed the bottle down on the counter next to her broken shoe.

“Come here,” he said, holding out his hand.

“Why?”

He wiggled his fingers. “Just, come here.” When she didn’t move he added, “Please.”

He took her hand when she got close and yanked her down onto his lap with her legs resting on the couch.

“For the record,” he said, winding one hand around her waist, the other across her thighs, “I love your ass. I love every part of your body. And whether you weighed fifty pounds or three fifty, you’d still be the sexiest woman I’ve ever known, Abigail.”

The words seeped into her soul. She wanted to believe them.

“And I’m sorry I dissed you to Josh. You’re right, I don’t live here, and I have no right to complain about anything. So, I’m sorry.”

Abby sat, quietly, staring up at him.

“What?” he asked when she tilted her head to one side.

“Contrition looks good on you.”

Intrigued? Stay tuned for more announcements on cover reveal, preorder links and release date!

And don’t forget, DEARLY BELOVED is still on sale until 8.23.19 Get your copy before book 2 comes out so you’ll be all caught up!

get your copy here:

amazon // B&N // ibooks

Until next time ~ Peg

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Filed under A Match Made in Heaven, Alpha Hero, Alpha Male, Contemporary Romance, Cooking, Dialogue, Romance, Romance Books, The Laine Women, WIld Rose Press AUthor

#1stKissfriday 5.3.19 Can’t Stand The Heat

There’s nothing I like more than an opposites attracts trope, and in Can’t Stand the Heat ( book 3 in the Will Cook for Love Series), I had a doozy of a bi-polar couple! And by that I mean they were at two opposite poles of the personality spectrum. Stacy, cool and calm, nothing fazes her and everyone loves her, and Nikko, angry, gruff, prone to outbursts and the air could make him mad! But there’s a reason for his arrogance and Stacy is just the gal to figure out what it is. This snippet is a little longer than usual but because of the dynamics of their budding relationship, I wanted to present it in its entirety.

He wasn’t looking at her now with his usual aggravated glare, or even the doubtful one he’d given her just moments before. Nor was his expression simple curiosity at her expertise.

No, what was in his eyes was something she’d never expected to see from this man: need.

A stab of unexpected hunger, so piercing and swift, sliced right through her midsection and dropped lower, tickling the area between her thighs.

And the hunger had nothing to do with the fact she hadn’t eaten anything in hours.

Nikko took a step forward, then another, until he stopped directly in front of her.

Stacy had to tip her head back to maintain eye contact with him. Hypnotized by the intensity in his eyes, she couldn’t look away from it; didn’t want to.

“Yes,” he said, his breath drifting over her, making her insides flutter like a flimsy curtain battling a sudden breeze. “I remember that. I remember you massaging my leg for some time.” He moved in closer, their torsos just a hair’s width from her breasts scraping along his chest.

“I remember the feel of your hands on my leg. Kneading. Rubbing. Your fingers, gliding along my muscles, up and down. Helping me. Easing my pain.”

“I—I…” She backed up a step and hit the dresser, her spine flattening against it. She braced her hands behind her, the tips of her fingers landing across one drawer. “I’m glad I did. Help, I mean.”

Was that her voice? It sounded as if she’d just run a marathon. Uphill.
 In thin air.

Nikko’s hands rose, slowly, purposefully, and came to rest on the top of the dresser, bracketing her between them, effectively imprisoning her. With every breath she took now, her torso grazed his.
His knees bumped hers as his head lowered, his eyes never moving from her own.
“Easing my pain,” he repeated softly, as if she’d hadn’t spoken, “and making me…want.” His lips floated a breath above hers, then touched hers once, just a brief buss; a sample; a promise. “Want…you.”

In the next breath he fulfilled that promise by resting his mouth fully against hers. Soft yet powerful, seductive and masterful, his lips glided over hers. Pressed. Savored.

Asked.

Stacy answered by relaxing against him, moving into the kiss without thought, without reservation, without worry.

He kissed like a man who knew what he was doing. He demanded nothing of her than to simply let him pleasure her mouth, and yet she poured everything inside her, offered every bit of herself into kissing him back without the slightest bit of hesitation or concern.

He shifted, changed the angle of his head, and lifted his hands from the dresser to cup her cheeks between them. Tipping her head back, her body arched as he deepened the kiss, greedily parting her lips with his tongue then forging between them, overwhelming her, claiming her.

Under the thin robe her nipples came to two hard points as his tongue tugged and wound with hers. He tasted like…nothing she could put a name to. Full-bodied, like the thirty-five-year-old port her father favored after dinner; sweet and refreshing like Grandma’s orange sorbet, her favorite dessert; savory and woodsy like air in a forest after a quick, unexpected downpour.

A fleeting thought that maybe, just maybe, Nikko didn’t dislike her as much as she’d believed flew through her mind.

Her hands developed a will of their own as they danced up his broad, rock-hard chest, and wound around his thick neck to grip his hair. Fisting it, she hung onto the ends as if her life depended on it. As if she’d crash back to earth if she let go.

His fingers drifted along the column of her throat, across her shoulders, down her back, to settle, through her robe, on her butt. Molding his hands to her rounded flesh, he pulled her in closer, folding her into him and letting her know just how much what he was feeling wasn’t dislike.

Not even close.

Except for her thong, she was naked under the silk robe and as his hands glided over the material, whispered over her body, the luxurious feel of the fabric rubbing against her bare skin shot erotic flares all along her spine, straight down to her toes.

While his tongue mated with hers, his hands slipped under the hem of the short garment to cup the bare skin he found there.

As she’d massaged the muscles and sinew over his leg the night before, he returned the favor, squeezing and kneading her butt in his warm, firm grasp. For a heartbeat, Stacy tensed, her gluteal muscles instinctively tightening. The touch of a man’s hands so intimately pressed against her flesh wasn’t something she was used to.

In the next instant, spurred on by the gentle, thorough pressure of his fingers, she relaxed and pushed in even closer, nothing separating their bodies but their clothes.

Nikko slipped one finger under the strip of her thong, tugged it to the side, and with another traced a line down along the cleft between her cheeks. Her knees buckled when he thrust a knee between her thighs, forcing them to open for him, pressing intimately against her. She could feel the soft denim of his jeans through the tiny wisp of the thong’s lace panel and when he began rubbing his knee across her mound, her insides turned to melting gold.

Good Lord.

Every nerve fiber in the lower half of her body stood straight up at attention. Stacy widened her stance as much as she could. It was then she realized she was standing on the very tips of her toes. Nikko bore most of her weight as she leaned against him.

He shifted again, reached down, and dragged his finger along the heat pouring from her core, now separated and open to his touch.

A guttural moan, deep and filled with longing, escaped in the air as his lips left hers to trail down and nuzzle the sweet spot behind her ear. He tugged the lobe between his lips and bit down, while his wicked and persistent finger dared to dip into the long, wet length of her.

And she was wet.

Drenched, in fact.

His strong, steady finger glided from one end of her to the other, slipping across her flesh and through every defense she had.

A quick thought that nothing had ever felt so good, so god-blessed good as Nikko’s hands on her skin, came to her.

She clutched the ends of his hair tighter, her breaths shallow and fast as his fingers dragged along her, their rhythm timed to perfection with the movement of his tongue in her mouth.

The air around her exploded with the echo of a deep, reverberating groan.

Just as she realized she’d been the one to make the sound, the room was shattered by a blare of static from her walkie-talkie.

“Stacy? Stacy? You copy?”

Nikko jerked his head back, surprise and anger mixing on his face as he heaved his gaze from her face to the device resting on the bed, and then back to her.

A well of boiling heat suffused his half-closed eyes as he gazed down at her. His lips were swollen and kiss-slick-wet, and when his tongue flicked out and ran across his top lip and then the bottom, as if savoring the taste of her, Stacy’s breath caught.

He still had her pinioned against the dresser, one hand caressing the nape of her neck, the other burrowed between her legs.

“Stacy? You there?”
Reality washed over her like a tidal wave.
“I—I have to get that.” She pushed against his chest, tried to slide from his hold.
The man was as solid as a fortress. He stood, stone-still and immobile.

Intrigued? You can order your copy here, along with  the other WIll Cook For Love books,

COOKING WITH KANDY and A SHOT AT LOVE

     

and one thing before you go: I just found out ( yesterday!) that CAN’T STAND THE HEAT is a finalist in the Desert Rose RWA GOLDEN QUILLS Contest for 2019!

So exciting! ~Peg

 

 

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Filed under Alpha Hero, Author, Characters, Contemporary Romance, Cooking, Family Saga, Food lover, Foodie, Kensington Publishers, love, Lyrical Author, Romance, Romance Books, Strong Women, The Laine Women

#SundaySnippet 2.24.19 A Shot at Love

When I set out to write A SHOT AT LOVE I wanted to write my first bad-ass heroine. Gemma Laine jumped to the head of the line in my head and exploded on the page. She’s the type of gal I’d want in my corner if I was ever kidnapped by terrorists, if I was walking down a  dark and deserted street at night, and if I ever needed someone to -literally – cover my 6 ( Gibbs reference there, peeps!) This scene proves what a warrior she is.

“How many do I have to hit for you to be satisfied?”

Ky looked over to where she stood at the side of the garage, the Glock in her hand, its barrel aimed at the ground. Her eyes had gone wide at the hidden supply of weapons Bannerman had in the pantry access room, but her only comment had been a muttered, “Why am I not surprised?” before she’d made her choice.

He’d watched her load the clip, then weigh and balance the gun in her hand like she did it every day of her life.

“This’ll do,” she told him.

He found a box of empty beer and wine bottles in the garage and set them up at varying distances from where he’d told her to stand. He wanted to ensure she was comfortable shooting up close and far.

“All of them.” He came and stood next to her.

“Are you kidding? All of them?”

“You might never get a second chance if a first bullet misses an attacker, so yes. All of them.”

She moved to the line in the grass he’d drawn for her to shoot from, mumbling something he couldn’t hear, but guessing it wasn’t something complimentary.

“Ready?” he asked.

“Yup. Any particular order you want me to hit them in?”

He had to bite back the grin threatening to fly free at her snooty, disgruntled tone.
“Your call.”

Gemma nodded and planted her feet. He wasn’t surprised when she angled her body with one foot slightly behind the other in a Weaver stance—a more aggressive, weight-forward position—and not the triangular, or Isosceles stance. Gemma held her gun up to her face, lining up her shot, both elbows bent and close to her torso. Her brother-in-law, Josh, had been a New York City cop, and if he’d taught her to shoot, it made sense he’d taught her this way. Although the Isosceles stance was the more popular, Ky knew the Weaver was a power stance, and Gemma was a woman for whom power could have been a middle name.

She flexed her shoulders and neck, the motion so subtly erotic, it made his pulse quicken, and shifted her weight. From his viewing position behind her, he appreciated just how tall and lean she was. Narrow shoulders were relaxed and tapered down into a waist no bigger than a hand span. How many times in the past few days had he thought what it would be like to slip his own hands around that tiny area and pull her in close? Too many for prudence, that was for sure.

The first bottle, the one he’d placed the farthest from them, shattered into a thousand fragments. Before he could take a full breath, she’d hit the next two.

The final three closer ones she dispatched with equal ease.

When she turned to him and asked, “Satisfied?” in a tone filled with condescension, Ky had to physically restrain himself from running to her, lifting her up in his arms, and kissing the gorgeous smirk off her mouth.

Because he’d discovered how much he liked sparring with her—go figure that out—he pursed his lips and nodded. “Not bad.”

Gemma’s smirk grew into a self-satisfied grin.

“But they were all stationary targets. Really adept shooters practice with moving targets, so I really can’t gauge how well you’ll do with that. But for now, you’ll do.”

The squinty-eyed glare she aimed at him would have made a lesser man run for the hills.

“Trust me.” She dropped the empty cartridge case from the weapon into her free hand. “I can shoot those as well.”

He handed her another clip and watched as she loaded it.

“Let’s hope you never have to prove it to me.”

Gemma slapped the cartridge in place. Ky handed her a holster and waited until she fastened it around her waist.

After tightening it, she secured the gun in place, dropped her hands on her hips and asked, “Can we go now?”

She looked like a warrior armed for battle. Strong, self-possessed, and so bad-assed sexy standing in front of him, her bangs blowing back from the slight breeze surrounding them, her perfect chin tilted up defiantly.

He could imagine her leading an army into a crusade against evil, each soldier following her blindly, minions pledged to fight for her, perhaps die for her without hesitation.

And he’d be one of them.
“Sure. Get your camera. I’ll secure the house.”

Intrigued for more? You can purchase a copy in print or ebook here:

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Goodreads Reviews for A SHOT AT LOVE

Want to read a preview? Click here.

Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me//Google+Me// Triber// BookMe // Monkey me //Watch me

Here’s the link to my TELL ME ABOUT YOUR DAMN BOOK podcast interview, just in case you missed it: TMAYDB

and the link to my recent interview on NewHampshirePublicRadio

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Filed under Alpha Hero, Characters, Contemporary Romance, Food lover, Foodie, Kensington Publishers, love, Lyrical Author, Romance, Romance Books, romantic suspense, Strong Women, The Laine Women

#1stLineFriday A Shot at Love 2.22.19

Special Agent Kyros Pappandreos scanned the midtown Manhattan street in front of him and swore. “I want to see the cops who were first on scene right now,” he demanded of the uniformed NYPD officer next to him.

Nothing’s impossible when love is on the menu. In Peggy Jaeger’s luscious series, the only thing more tempting than a delicious meal is a truly delectable romance . . .
Look for exclusive recipes in each book!  
 
Photographer Gemma Laine is looking for arresting faces on the streets of Manhattan when her camera captures something shocking—a triple murder. In that moment, she becomes a target for the mob—and a top priority for a very determined, breathtakingly handsome, FBI special agent. With deadlines to meet and photo shoots on her calendar, Gemma chafes at the idea of protection, but every moment she spends under his watchful eye is a temptation to lose herself in his muscular arms . . .
 
With two of his men and one crucial witness dead, Special Agent Kyros Pappandreos can’t afford to be distracted. But Gemma is dazzling—and her connection to Kandy Laine’s high-profile cooking empire makes her an especially easy mark for some very bad people. Keeping her safe is much more pleasure than business, but as the heat between them starts to sizzle, Ky is set to investigate whether they have a shot at love . . .

Available here: Amazon // Apple // Google // Kobo // Nook 

Goodreads Reviews for A SHOT AT LOVE

Want to read a preview? Click here.

Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me//Google+Me// Triber// BookMe // Monkey me //Watch me

Here’s the link to my TELL ME ABOUT YOUR DAMN BOOK podcast interview, just in case you missed it: TMAYDB

and the link to my recent interview on NewHampshirePublicRadio

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Filed under Alpha Hero, Alpha Male, Contemporary Romance, Cooking, Food lover, Foodie, love, Romance, Romance Books, romantic suspense, Strong Women, The Laine Women

#SundaySnippet 2.17.19

Cooking with Kandy was my first book for Kensington/Lyrical Shine. Introducing the world to the life and family of cheflebrity Kandy Laine was fun. The fact this book spawned a few more in the series was an added bonus! Kandy is reluctant to have a bodyguard, and doesn’t feel any of the weird things occurring lately warrant one. Her family disagrees. 

The heat between Kandy and Josh is palpable from the first time they meet. In this little snippet, Kandy is finally beginning to see what an asset Josh could be to have around – and in more ways than one.

He made his way to the other side of the room, ignoring the stares and whispers of the crowd, found the lounge, and knocked. “Kandy? It’s Josh. Can I come in?”

It was Gemma who answered. “Yes.”
The sisters were seated in twin floral Queen Anne chairs, Gemma reclining back into hers, arms crossed over her chest. Kandy was opposite, head wrung in her hands.

“Cort thought you could use this,” he said, handing her the champagne flute.

He’d expected tears, but was surprised to see Kandy’s beautiful face pinch in a scowl, her eyes flaring with sweltering anger and venom when she looked up at him.

“Thanks.” Kandy took the drink and downed half of it in one gulp.

When she wiped her lips with the back of her hand, the corners of Gemma’s mouth lifted and she asked Josh, “What did you do to the turd?”

“Explained he needed to leave, put him in the elevator, and made sure he went down in it.”

“Made him how?” Kandy asked.

“Little persuasion trick I know. His wrist’s gonna be sore tomorrow. Maybe for the next few days.”

“You physically removed him?” Gemma asked.
Josh almost laughed at the excitement in her voice.

He shrugged.

“Yeah. He was going to follow Kandy if I didn’t.”

“Please tell me you have unmarried, available brothers at home,” Gemma said.

It hurt to keep the smile from his face, but he did. “Three, in fact.”

“Are they all like you? No, scratch that.” She sighed, the sound wistful.

“I doubt there’s anyone like you.”

“If you mean are they all workaholics and career-driven, then no. They’re not like me. But they are available.”

“I’ll keep it in mind.” She glanced at her sister and said, “Well, looks like my work here is done. She’s all yours now.” She stood and kissed the top of Kandy’s head. “Evan Chandler is an egotistical, phony prick. Remember that.”

“How could I forget it?” Kandy grabbed her sister’s hand and kissed the back of it. “Thanks.”

When Gemma left, Josh took her empty chair. “You okay?”

She took a deep breath before saying, “Mad, but okay. I underestimated him.”

“How so?”

“I didn’t think he’d have the guts to crash my party. I thought he was too much of a wimp to risk it after our last encounter. Guess I was wrong.” She stood and crossed to the vanity. Peering at her reflection, she ran a lazy hand through her hair, fluffing the curls. She caught his gaze, watching her, in the mirror. “Aren’t you going to ask me about it?”

He’d considered it. But the weary look in her eyes told him he was better off asking Stacy or Gemma.

“No. If you want to talk, I’ll listen. Otherwise, you’ve got a pretty fancy shindig going on out there.” He cocked his thumb in the direction of the ballroom. “Maybe you want to get back and enjoy it. Bask in the adulation,” he said with a good-natured grin.

She turned to him and her eyes softened. When her lips moved upward into a small, lazy smile, the dimples dancing, his legs went a little soft and he was thankful he was seated.

“Yeah,” she said, moving to him. When he stood, she linked her arm in his. “Thanks. You’re right. Let’s go have a party.”

He returned her smile, glad he could help.
“You’re not so bad, Keane. This bodyguard thing might be fun after all.” It was a moment before he trusted himself to speak. “I aim to please.”

Intrigued? You can find COOKING WITH KANDY at these on-line retailers:

Buy links: Amazon //Apple // Google // Kobo // Nook//

Walmart // Books-a-Million

Reviews for COOKING WITH KANDY

Read a preview of Cooking With Kandy

Sugar and spice and everything sexy make the perfect recipe for romance in this brand-new series by Peggy Jaeger. Look for exclusive recipes in each book

Kandy Laine built her wildly popular food empire the old-fashioned way-starting with the basic ingredients of her grandmother’s recipes and flavoring it all with her particular brand of sweet spice. From her cookbooks to her hit TV show, Kandy is a kitchen queen-and suddenly someone is determined to poison her cup. With odd accidents and threatening messages piling up, strong-willed Kandy can’t protest when her team hires someone to keep her safe-but she can’t deny that the man for the job looks delicious…

Josh Keane is a private investigator, not a bodyguard. But with one eyeful of Kandy’s ebony curls and dimpled smile, he’s signing on to uncover who’s cooking up trouble for the gorgeous chef. As the attraction between them starts to simmer, it’s not easy to keep his mind on the job, but when the strange distractions turn to true danger, he’ll stop at nothing to keep Kandy safe-and show her that a future together is on the menu…

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Filed under Alpha Hero, Characters, Contemporary Romance, Cooking, Food lover, Foodie, Kensington Publishers, love, Lyrical Author, Romance, Romance Books, Strong Women, The Laine Women

#1stLineFriday Cooking with Kandy

“Hold on to your forks, folks, because today I’m making one of Grandma Sophie’s to-die-for layer cakes, guaranteed to make your sweet tooth tingle.” Kandy Laine aimed a wide, dimpled grin at the television camera.

 

Buy links: Amazon //Apple // Google // Kobo // Nook//

Walmart // Books-a-Million

Reviews for COOKING WITH KANDY

Read a preview of Cooking With Kandy

Sugar and spice and everything sexy make the perfect recipe for romance in this brand-new series by Peggy Jaeger. Look for exclusive recipes in each book

Kandy Laine built her wildly popular food empire the old-fashioned way-starting with the basic ingredients of her grandmother’s recipes and flavoring it all with her particular brand of sweet spice. From her cookbooks to her hit TV show, Kandy is a kitchen queen-and suddenly someone is determined to poison her cup. With odd accidents and threatening messages piling up, strong-willed Kandy can’t protest when her team hires someone to keep her safe-but she can’t deny that the man for the job looks delicious…

Josh Keane is a private investigator, not a bodyguard. But with one eyeful of Kandy’s ebony curls and dimpled smile, he’s signing on to uncover who’s cooking up trouble for the gorgeous chef. As the attraction between them starts to simmer, it’s not easy to keep his mind on the job, but when the strange distractions turn to true danger, he’ll stop at nothing to keep Kandy safe-and show her that a future together is on the menu…

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Alpha Hero, Contemporary Romance, Cooking, Food lover, Foodie, Kensington Publishers, Lyrical Author, Romance, Romance Books, The Laine Women