Thursday, June 30, 2016

Cover Reveal for the Complete Chicago War Series by Bethany-Kris



Chicago War: The Complete Series

by Bethany-Kris
Chicago War #1-4
Publication Date: August 8, 2016
Genres: Organized Crime, Erotic Romance, Suspense




Synopsis

The war began with the death of one person and would end with the killing of many more. Four families paint Chicago red as greed, hatred, secrets, and loyalties divide them to opposite ends of the city.

But in the midst of the fighting and bloodshed, there are those who struggle between love and famiglia.

They are the most dangerous of all.

They have everything to lose.

And no one will see them coming.

Chicago War: The Complete Series features the full-length novels,Deathless & Divided, Reckless & Ruined, Scarless & Sacred, and Breathless & Bloodstained.



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CAN'T WAIT TO GET YOUR HANDS ON THE CHICAGO WAR: COMPLETE SERIES? ALL 4 BOOKS ARE AVAILABLE INDIVIDUALLY, #FREE WITH #KINDLEUNLIMITED!



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ABOUT BETHANY-KRIS


Bethany-Kris

Bethany-Kris is a Canadian author, lover of much, and mother to three young sons, one cat, and two dogs. A small town in Eastern Canada where she was born and raised is where she has always called home. With her boys under her feet, snuggling cat, barking dogs, and a hubby calling over his shoulder, she is nearly always writing something  when she can find the time.


To keep up-to-date with new releases from Bethany-Kris, sign up to her New Release Newsletter here: 



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Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Blog Tour for The Prince's Bride by Diane Alberts



The Princes Bride


by Diane Alberts
Modern Fairytales, #2
Publication Date: June 20, 2016
Genres: Adult, Entangled: Indulgence, Contemporary Romance



Purchase


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Synopsis

His Cinderella isnt looking for a fairy tale

Alicia Forkes went to a trendy club looking for a way to forget her troubles, and she found that in the arms of the gorgeous man who swept her off of her feetand into one of the hottest encounters shed ever had in her life. Awesome sex with a stranger is now something she can check off her bucket list.

Except he isnt exactly a stranger. Hes the guy who broke her heart when they were teens, an experience she doesnt plan on repeating.

Prince Leo cant believe hes finally found the woman hes loved for years, and she wants nothing to do with him. When she shows up at his office, she looks anything but princess-like. In fact, shes cursing him to hell and back. She may not be Cinderella, but hes determined to prove hes the prince for hereven if it means letting her go.




Review
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True love always find a way to overcome the greatest barriers. Distance isn't an issue as out of sight isn't always out of mind. 

Leo is a prince and his father wants nothing more than to see him settle down with a princess. Leo doesn't want to settle for just any princess. He is looking for true love. 

Alicia has been through some hard times from a very young age but somehow she managed to finish her education and now has a good job. Having been heartbroken once, the last thing she wants is to go through the same ordeal. 

Alicia is going through the process of ticking off things from her bucket list in honour of her best friend. She is assigned to a project outside of the US and as travelling is on the list, that's one down. When she receives some vouchers with details of a nightclub, she decides to take the plunge and tick something else off the list. Having a one night stand, then make a run. Everyone has to wear a mask at this nightclub and when she is approached by this tall dark stranger, she thinks why not? What she doesn't expect is this magnetic pull towards this stranger. There is a familiarity which is hard to explain. The stranger is just as affected, especially as he recognises who she is. 

Leo thinks that she got away but being a prince he has to abide by the rules. After this passionate encounter, he has to make sure that there won't be any scandal. He is therefore compelled to find Alicia and keep her at the palace until he is certain that there will be no repercussions. Alicia is mortified that she has no choice in the matter. Imagine her surprise when she meets Leo and instead of calling him royal highness, she adds a few choice words to his title. This is where everything becomes really interesting. Leo is trying really hard to win her trust but she is unable to forget the hurt he caused her when they were teens. Now that she knows that he is a prince, she is more determined to keep her distance. She is no princess! Can they fight this attraction and strong bond or will they be forced to go their separate ways? As the mysteries of the past unfold, it becomes apparent that they have both been betrayed.

Leo is loving and lovable. Alicia doesn't trust easily but she too is very loving and compassionate. This is a beautifully presented love story. It's very well paced and the storyline is bittersweet. If you like to read a modern day fairy tale, then this is definitely for you. 

I received an eARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.


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DON'T MISS THE FIRST BOOK IN THE MODERN FAIRYTALES SERIES...


Beauty and the Boss #1 Cover


Beauty and the Boss

by Diane Alberts
Modern Fairytales, #1
Publication Date: November 13, 2015
Genres: Adult, Entangled: Indulgence, Contemporary Romance

Purchase

 Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA 


B&N | Kobo | iBooks


Synopsis

Beauty is about to tame her beast...

Researcher Maggie Donovan has no luck with men, and it doesn't help that she can't keep her eyes off of her sexy boss - the one everyone else in the office calls The Beast. Relationships in the office are forbidden. So no one is more surprised than Maggie when she pretends to be his fiancรฉe to save him during a difficult situation. Not only has she put her job on the line, but the future of the company.

Billionaire Benjamin Gale III doesn't believe in love or romance, but the look on his mother's face when Maggie tells her that she's his fiancรฉe is worth millions. Instead of firing her for her insubordination, he goes along with the ruse. In his arms-and in his bed-she'd be everything he could ever wantwhich is why he can't have her.

But if he doesn't let her go, they'll lose everything. 



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ABOUT DIANE ALBERTS



Diane Alberts is a USA TODAY bestselling Contemporary Romance author with Entangled Publishing. Under the name Jen McLaughlin, she also writes New York Times, USA TODAY, and Wall Street Journal bestselling books with Penguin RandomHouse. She was mentioned in Forbes alongside E. L. James as one of the breakout independent authors to dominate the bestselling lists. Diane is represented by Louise Fury at The Bent Agency.

Diane has always been a dreamer with a vivid imagination, but it wasnt until 2011 that she put her pen where her brain was, and became a published author. Since receiving her first contract offer, she has yet to stop writing. Though she lives in the mountains, she really wishes she was surrounded by a hot, sunny beach with crystal clear water. She lives in Northeast Pennsylvania with her four kids, a husband, a schnauzer mutt, and three cats. Her goal is to write so many fantastic stories that even a non-romance reader will know her name.





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Stifled (Summoned #2) by Rainy Kaye


Author                     Rainy Kaye 
Publication Date    17 May 2016 
Genre                        Paranormal Thriller Romance 


Dimitri would like nothing more than to live a low-key life in Naples, Italy. His girlfriend, Syd, has other plans. After three months of researching, she is positive she has found a jinn on a killing spree in San Diego, California. Since Syd gave Dimitri the one thing he thought was out of reach, he feels obligated to use his ill-gained talents for her cause. 

A few hours back in the US proves that Dimitri and Syd didn't quite make the clean escape they had thought. As they trail the elusive jinn, someone else trails them. What should have been a simple trip to confirm once and for all if the jinn are living among humans, instead reveals a community keeping dark secrets. 

Unfortunately for Dim, the only way out is in.




Stifled follows on from book one when Dimitri was freed from his master’s bond. Syd takes him to Naples to stay with her grandmother. The peace he is enjoying doesn't last very long though.

Syd continues to do her research on Jinn and comes across an interesting discovery. Dimitri agrees to go back with her to California to investigate and help Syd with what she has in mind. Nothing is as simple as they had assumed. They come across this network of masters whose agenda is less than honourable. Dimitri knows only too well what it feels like to be in the other Jinns' shoes. What should be a straightforward endeavour turns into a bit of a nightmare.

Syd is intent on pursuing her research even when their lives could be possibly in danger. Dimitri is unable to refuse to do her biddings even if he is now a free man. It turns out that he is being pursued whilst trying to uncover the activities of this secret network.

There are plenty of actions and surprises in this part but somehow I found Syd's behaviour to be inconsiderate and immature. She is so focused on broadening her knowledge that she seems to overlook Dimitri's pain from his injuries after numerous encounters with the enemy. She could have shown a little more compassion in these instances. She does manage to redeem herself in the end though. Dimitri's wit and the way he gets himself out of tight corners held my interest.

I received an eARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
 













Rainy Kaye is an aspiring overlord. In the mean time, she blogs here at RainyoftheDark, edits for amazing authors, and writes paranormal novels all from her lair somewhere in Phoenix, Arizona. Her published works include the SUMMONED series, and the short story BE FEARLESS.
She is represented by Rossano Trentin of TZLA. Someone told her she’s a USA Today Bestselling author. She thought there would be cake.









Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Release Day Blitz for In the Absence of you by Sunniva Dee




In The Absence Of You
Sunniva Dee
Publication date: June 28th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
































Aishe is running. Running from the burn of a love she knows will consume her.
Running from a soul mate she’s never even met.
If only she hadn’t been hired as a merch girl for the hottest indie band on earth.
If only she’d never laid eyes on its front man, Emil—intense, sexy, and so unlike the men of her culture.
If only she hadn’t fallen onto his lips, then into his bed.
If only her flame hadn’t exploded into a full-on forest fire.
If only Emil’s heart didn’t belong to someone else.
***

Emil is running. Running from a broken heart.
Running from who he was with her.
If only Zoe hadn’t left.
If only Aishe hadn’t been right there.
If only she hadn’t been so damn gorgeous—insistent—different.
If only he could control himself around her.
If. Only.

Review 
๐ŸŒŸ ๐ŸŒŸ ๐ŸŒŸ ๐ŸŒŸ ๐ŸŒŸ 

I have read all of this author's books and she never ceases to amaze me. This story is quite overwhelming.

Emil is the lead singer of his band. He is broken hearted and getting over Zoe, his ex is proving to be impossible. He drowns his sorrow in booze, his music and groupies.

Aishe is the merch for the band. She is running away from finding true love which is believed to be a curse in the Romani community. Being on the road with the band will keep her safe from that fate.

Emil is in a bad way. He looks great on the outside but he is constantly in an emotional and mental turmoil. Aishe thinks that she can help him heal but doesn't expect what she is about to experience. There is some form of chemistry between them but Emil's heart is not in it. He enjoys the sexual interactions and when his conscience gets the better of him, he finds that Aishe is not easily dissuaded. The other members of the band are very tolerant and do their best to help the situation.

Troy, the drummer of the band is very supportive of Aishe and they become good friends. Then he goes and does something completely out of character which is totally unexpected and shocking.

Emil's stage presence is very tangible as is the myriad of emotions throughout the book. Parts of the story are very frustrating but that doesn't take away the urge to keep reading in order to unearth what comes next.

This is a dark and complicated story. It's portrayed with such intensity that I felt more like a bystander instead of a reader. This New Adult Novel highlights the effects of the newspress, heartbreaks, obsession and beliefs.

There are some fun and happy moments amongst the tears, the uncertainties and confusion. The love is fierce. It's an outstanding read and I would recommend to those who like being taken on an emotional rollercoaster.

I received an eARC from the author in exchange for an honest review.



Sexy friend teaser Absence


EXCERPT

AISHE

I come from a family that burns with love. You wouldn’t understand unless you were one of us. I’m not just talking my father and my mother—I’m talking every one of my ancestors. It’s in our genetic build to spend all of our energy on love.

Once we come of age, it strikes and blazes with a fire that eats you alive. This love is a plague that boils in my race and in my culture, and I wouldn’t know a different way unless I’d broken free and seen strangers love with milder flames.

Tonight, my eyes go from the merchandise on my table to the blond-headed burst of life hopping off the stage. His gaze shimmers with amusement, a cocky lip twitching as he slaps high-fives to guys and pinches girl-cheeks on his way over.

“Aishe! You got those super-tight, hot little tees with the broken heart thingy on the front? The ones the chicks dig?” he asks once he’s in front of me, Emil, the vocalist of Clown Irruption, one of the hottest alt-rock indie-bands out there. I’ve been their merch girl for a few months now. Each night, I zoom in on Emil with less and less difficulty.

“Yeah. Troll picked them up this morning,” I say referring to their tour manager.
“This is so cool—finally we see actual merch money,” Emil laughs out. Then he sets a hand to the table and squints at me. “You’ve done much better than your cousin. I mean, Shandor, man.” He shakes his head playfully. “He couldn’t draw dudes to the stand worth shit.”

My face loosens in a smile. I send a subtle glance at Shandor, who’s busy wrapping things up on stage, coiling cables and breaking down drums. To sell T-shirts wasn’t what he burned for. Shandor was born with the plague of our people too, but he hasn’t found his beloved yet. My people, we need something to obsess over, so if it’s not a man’s love for a woman or vice versa, it’s something else, and Shandor, he loves his music. Once the band promoted him from merch guy to monitors on stage, he recommended me to fill his spot, and voilร , here I am.

Shandor raises his head and stills on us, focus intent from under dark locks. He’s got a sixth sense for when guys chitchat with me. Like me, he left our traveling community years back, but the need to protect any girl of our people is so deep-rooted I doubt he ever questions it. Shandor would do everything in his power to stop any man, employer or not, from toying with his little cousin.

I straighten so that I’m tall for my height. Though I’m not overly curvy, I’m lean and strong. Supposedly, I’m also fiery, a bit fierce, a bit ferocious, traits that make me who I am, traits I don’t need here in the outside world as opposed to amongst those I was born to.

I intimidate most men with the stance I take right now, but I can’t intimidate Shandor. He glares, telling me without words what not to do, and next he pierces his stare into Emil’s back. Oblivious, Emil juts his index finger at the case of lukewarm beers behind me, wiggles it back and forth quickly, lips pursed in anticipation. “Hand over one of those babies, will ya?”

Gypsies fighting for man teaser



Author Bio

Between studies, teaching, and advising, Sunniva has spent her entire adult life in a college environment. Most of her novels are new adult romance geared toward smart, passionate readers with a love for eclectic language and engaging their brain as well as their heart while reading.

Born in the Land of the Midnight Sun, the author spent her early twenties making the world her playground. Southern Europe: Spain, Italy, Greece--Argentina: Buenos Aires, in particular. The United States finally kept her interest, and after half a decade in Los Angeles, she now lounges in the beautiful city of Savannah.
Sometimes, Sunniva writes with a paranormal twist (Shattering Halos, Stargazer, and Cat Love). At other times, it's contemporary (Pandora Wild Child, Leon's Way, Adrenaline Crush, Walking Heartbreak, and Dodging Trains, coming in late March 2016).

This author is the happiest when her characters let their emotions run off with them, shaping her stories in ways she never foresaw. She loves bad-boys and good-boys run amok, and like in real life, her goal is to keep the reader on her toes until the end of each story.








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Release Blitz for Blue Moon (Moon #6) by Lisa Kessler


Author                      Lisa Kessler 
Publication Date     27 June 2016 
Genre                         Adult Paranormal Romance 



She’s his muse, his mate, and she’s completely off-limits.

He’s a jerk, a recluse, and her newest assignment.
Until he broke her heart, Vivianna Lopez loved Logan Reynolds.
Five years later, she’s an aspiring music journalist and he’s the camera-shy lead singer of Logan and the Howlers.
Armed with a backstage pass, Vivi’s back in her hometown of Reno, nestled in the shadows of the Sierra Nevada mountains. She must score an interview with Logan to land her dream job - otherwise it’s back to Boston, with no scoop and no job. It’s just business–at least that’s what she keeps telling herself.
Logan still loves Vivi, his soul mate, but there’s something even she doesn’t know about him: He turns into a werewolf every full moon and a secret organization is hunting down his Pack.
Vivi may not have Logan’s senses, but she can sniff out that he’s hiding something. He knows it’s only a matter of time before the truth about him - and his Pack - is revealed.
And then he really will lose her.
Each book in the Moon series is a standalone, full-length story that can be enjoyed out of order.
Reading Order:
Book #1 Moonlight
Book #2 Hunter's Moon
Book #3 Blood Moon
Book #4 Harvest Moon
Book #5 Ice Moon
Book #6 Blue Moon


Logan is the lead singer and song writer of his band. Although he is in the public eyes whilst on stage, he keeps to himself and avoids publicity. He is a werewolf and if this was to be made public his life and those of his pack mates could be in serious trouble. He is also pining for his soul mate. He can't move on without her.

Viviana/Viv aka Ana is a music journalist. She has known Logan since a very young age and they were childhood sweethearts until he stood her up five years ago. She can't forgive him and intends to move on.

When Viv has the opportunity to interview the elusive Logan, she jumps at the opportunity as this could help to further her career. At least this is what she tells herself. Logan is still in love with her but the first attempt at the interview ends in a fiasco because she is still angry with him for walking out on her. She doesn’t know that shifters exist let alone Logan being a werewolf. He is in two minds about revealing his secret to her. He dreads her reaction to the truth and now that his pack is in conflict with a powerful organisation, their lives are in danger. They know that they have a second chance but Viv won't budge until she receives an explanation from him. Does Logan want to bring her in his dangerous world, should she believe him?

Viv has another story lined up and when Logan finds out he is determined to protect her. They start making a go at the chance that they have been given but when Viv is faced with danger and violence, she starts having second thoughts. The thing is that they are both still madly in love with each other. Can she be the one to walk away this time? Will Logan be able to let her go?

This story is fast paced and has a nice flow. It's full of danger, loyalty, greed for power, love and sorrow. All the characters are well developed. Logan and Viv are ideal for each other. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this novel and would recommend lovers of the paranormal.

I received an eARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. 


Chapter One

Logan

Paul jogged onstage with my Gibson. I swapped the electric guitar for the acoustic and slid the strap over my shoulder. Amazing that I could be sitting on a cold stool in the hot lights of a open-air college amphitheater with five thousand screaming fans and still feel so damned alone. 
I sucked in a slow breath, my fingers instinctively reaching for that first chord. My Gibson was my focus. With her in my arms, everything else faded away.
“I love you, Logan!” 
I peered into the blinding spotlight and leaned into the mic. “Love you, too.”
The crowd went ballistic. Tonight was my twenty-third birthday, and I was spending it with my alt-rock band, Logan and the Howlers. We were finally starting to see some success. Our songs climbed up iTunes charts as fast as we could release them, and our concert venues were getting bigger without the backing of a big record label. We were busy.
Even on my birthday. 
Luke, my twin brother, was waiting somewhere in the wings. After the show, we were going to grab a couple of beers to celebrate, and I’d paste on a smile for my brother. For me, it was just another empty year. As my Pack brothers each found their mates, the one woman he would ever love, the ache for mine grew, but unlike the rest of the Pack, there was no hope of me being with her.
I blew my chance years ago.
Pushing the memories away, I leaned on the stool while the rest of the Howlers vanished offstage for a water break. This was my song. The crowd erupted as I strummed the first chord. “Madness in the Moonlight” was still one of our top selling singles, and a favorite at live performances. My pain on display. 
She haunts my dreams.
Shadows of the past.
Ripping my heart down the seams.
No one to blame but me.
I’m a lone wolf now, but I still stare up at the moon, 
Call her name, and wonder if she’s looking, too…
I sat back, letting the crowd finish the chorus, wailing the anger and rage.
Madness. Madness. Madness.
Wishing won’t change a thing.
Tell that to my fucking heart.
Welcome the pain, feel something.
Got to let her go.
Another verse, another chorus, but as I hit the key change, a familiar scent, clean and spicy like cinnamon ignited my senses. Oh shit. From where? 
I was the only member of the Howlers who actually howled. Once a month, the wolf in my soul came forward and I shifted my form, surrendering to the animalistic part of my spirit. And right now the dormant wolf was clawing toward my consciousness, no longer content to rest in the background. Even as a man, my senses were heightened—especially my senses of smell and hearing, but my vision didn’t suck, either.
I’d performed this song hundreds of times. My fingers found the chords instinctively, but I almost missed my vocals, stumbling over the next verse while I scanned the crowd. Finally I turned toward the wings. 
In the shadows offstage, my brother Luke waited for me…with a ghost from my past.
Anna.
Fuck.
I forced myself to face the crowd. This was no time to lose my shit. What the hell was she doing here? I powered through the ending of the song and stood to accept the cheers. 
Grabbing the hand mic, I tried not to check the wings again. “Thank you. There’s no place I’d rather be for my birthday!”
A deafening roar erupted from the crowd. “Happy Birthday, Logan” signs waved back and forth as my bandmates came out to join me, taking the decibel level even higher. Stryker jogged out, still shirtless, his untamed long hair bouncing with each stride. The guy was a monster on the drums. He raised his drumsticks while Levi, tall and slender, pumped his fist from behind the keyboard. 
Levi had a degree in music, and a knack for fleshing out harmonies. Plus he was our de facto social media manager, saving the rest of us from being near a computer. We loved him for that.
And finally Zane hustled out with his bass guitar on his shoulder, waving to fans. He was the “Old Man” of the Howlers. It didn’t help that he liked to keep his hair slicked back in a 50s pompadour.
Zane stopped next to me. “You okay, man?”
There was no way any regular guy would’ve heard it through the roar of the audience, but I caught every word. I glanced at the wings, relieved to see them empty. Maybe I’d imagined her.
Wishful thinking. I’d recognize her scent anywhere.
“I’m good.” 
I swapped my Gibson for the electric guitar and hit a chord. The Howlers had my back, filling the concert hall with a wall of sound, but I couldn’t lose myself in it this time. Any movement offstage had me jumpy and tense. This concert couldn’t be over soon enough.
“Night, Logan.” Zane grabbed his guitar case. “Good show, and happy birthday.”
“Thanks, man.” I dried the sweat from the back of my neck and tossed the towel in my bag.
Stryker was still dismantling his drum set. We could afford roadies to do it now, but he got territorial when it came to his drums. 
“Later Stryker.”
He looked up, flipping his mop of hair out of his face. “Later. Have a birthday beer for me.”
“Will do.” 
My bandmates had grown accustomed to me being on my own. It was tough to keep secrets from people you care about, so I kept my distance.
I hit the exit, and her scent assaulted me. Luke sat on the bumper of my pickup with Anna standing beside him. Their conversation halted as I came closer. As impossible as it seemed, she was sexier than I remembered, her curves more pronounced in her tight black dress.
Something inside me came unglued. The wolf howled, filling the empty space in my chest where my heart should have been.
Luke hopped off the bumper. He kept his dark hair shorter than I did, and working outside on the horse ranch made his skin a little more tan than mine. But he wasn’t wearing his faded ranch clothes now. He looked sharp in his black denim and white T-shirt, trying to impress a ghost from my past.
My eyes narrowed on my brother. “I didn’t know we were bringing dates.”
He frowned, draping his arm around her shoulder. “Oh, come on. Vivi’s like family. Did you know she’s staying up in Lake Tahoe right now?”
No, I didn’t know. She haunted every dream, every quiet moment. Her face fueled my muse. 
And if he didn’t stop touching her, I’d go out of my fucking mind.
“Hey Logan.”
Her voice was deep, rich and smooth like melted chocolate. She had dark eyes that used to see all the way into my soul. Could she see how empty I was inside now?
I swallowed the lump in my throat and did my best to sound flippant. “I didn’t know you were a fan of the Howlers, Anna.”
“You don’t get to call me that anymore.” Her brown eyes flashed. She shook her head and took a step back. “It’s Vivi or Vivianna.”
Not to me.
Her heart was pounding. I didn’t want to hear it. I didn’t want to hurt her. 
Too fucking bad.
She brushed her hair over her shoulder. “And I’m not a fan. I was here for work.”
I needed to touch her. Clenching my fists, I fought the desire. I’d never be strong enough to walk away again. She needed to leave me. Now.
“Were you selling merch?”
Her brow furrowed, her jaw dropping a little. “Seriously?” She shook her head. “Thanks for reminding me what an asshole you are.” 
“Good to see you, too. I’m going to get a beer.” I pinned my brother with a stare. “I’ll meet you at Lou’s.” 
Without waiting for an answer, I put my guitar in the cab. I should’ve gotten in and driven away, but I turned back one last time.
Anna grabbed Luke’s hand. My brother turned toward her, and bitterness burned my stomach. Maybe they were on a damn date. The light from the streetlamp glistened on her long black hair, teasing me. Every angle of her face tempted me. I hadn’t spoken to her in just over five years, but my hunger for her hadn’t faded. Far from it.
“Happy Birthday, Logan.” My name sounded cold on her lips, like a dagger in my chest.
What could I say? I broke her heart, but I’d do it all over again if it meant her dreams would come true. Our futures were always headed in opposite directions. I made the right choice.
It took every ounce of my will to get in my truck. I slammed the door and drove away. Longest damned drive to Lou’s in my life.
The dive bar was dimly lit, with a pool table in the far corner. The juke box blared “Hotel California” while I nursed my second whiskey, neat. I sat on a stool in the shadows at the end of the counter. The last thing I was in the mood for was some drunk chick to recognize me. A few years ago, I tried to drown my sorrows in fast women and band groupies, but nothing filled the void Anna left behind.
No amount of no-strings-attached sex was ever going to hold a candle to making love to her. Ever.
My brother finally walked through the door. I held my breath, but it didn’t open again. Anna wasn’t with him. The only trace of her was her scent on his fucking shirt.
“Hey, Logan.” We clasped forearms, the traditional Pack greeting. “Happy Birthday.”
“Yeah. You, too.”
He glanced at my glass. “Moved on from birthday beer, huh?” He took the stool next to me. “What the hell happened back there with Vivi? I thought you’d be happy to see her.”
I growled, downing the last of my whiskey. “I don’t want to talk about it.”
He ordered a beer then turned my way. “She’s been staying up at Lake Tahoe with a college friend. I ran into her a couple weeks ago. She’s never seen you in concert…” He shrugged. “I thought it would be fun.”
Maybe it was her scent on his shirt, or the way she held his hand as I drove away, but I caught his wrist before I realized what I was doing. My grip tightened like a vise. “You can have any woman in the world. Not. Her.” 
My final words were more animal than man. Luke’s eyes widened, and I let go of him, dragging a shaky hand back through my hair. My wolf was dangerously close to the surface, and the full moon was still two weeks away.
“First, we’re just friends, and second, I hate to break it to you, but you don’t get to call the shots here.” Luke leaned in close. “You dumped her and never even told her why. She waited for you in her prom dress. You humiliated her.”
“I was there. I remember.”
He groaned. “She hates you.”
“She should.” My voice cracked as I signaled for another drink. Anything to kill the ache inside.
“Okay, then why threaten me about seeing her?”
I met his eyes, staring at my mirror image. “Because she’s my mate.” 
His jaw slackened for a second as my words sank in. I wasn’t sure how I expected him to react, but shoving me back into the bar wasn’t it.
“You selfish prick.” He shook his head and lowered his voice. “How could you not tell me?”
“What was I going to say?” I took a swallow of my drink. “Anna is my mate, but we’re too young? It’s complicated?”
“It could have been that simple.” He shook his head. “But you didn’t trust me to understand.” He slammed his hand on the bar. “Our whole Pack blew off the stories of one mate for life. You knew it was true all this time, and you never said anything.”
“You don’t understand.”
“So help me. Why didn’t you tell me?”
“Because it was none of your damned business.” I pushed the glass away. It wasn’t helping anyway. “It was between me and Anna.”
“And five years later, she’s still clueless. You never told her, either.”
I dug inside the pocket of my jeans and pulled out a few bills. Slapping them on the bar, I glared at my brother. “I’m not doing this here.”
He caught my arm. “Logan.”
I sighed and met his eyes. “Yeah.”
“If she’s your mate, then she’s the only one for you.” A crease formed on his brow as he lowered his voice. “You’re choosing to be alone…forever?”
My gut twisted. “I loved her. I still do. So I’m walking away.” I yanked free from his grasp. “Just do me a favor and stay out of it. And stay away from her. The sooner she gets out of town, the better.”
He glanced at his boots, shaking his head. “Good luck with that.”
“What do you mean?”
“She’s got a chance for a staff job at Rolling Stone. Her dream job.” The bartender set Luke’s beer on the bar. He took a swig and tried not to smile. “That’s why she came west to stay with her friend. She’s here to be the first to get an interview with reclusive indie rocker, Logan Reynolds, from Logan and the Howlers.”
Aw fuck.



Lisa Kessler is an award winning author of dark paranormal fiction. Her debut novel, Night Walker, won a San Diego Book Award for Best Published Fantasy-Sci-fi-Horror as well as the Romance Through the Ages Award for Best Paranormal and Best First Book.
Her short stories have been published in print anthologies and magazines, and her vampire story, Immortal Beloved, was a finalist for a Bram Stoker award.
When she's not writing, Lisa is a professional vocalist, performing with the San Diego Opera as well as other musical theater companies in San Diego.











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