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Category: Excerpts

Monthly-ish Update, an excerpt, and are you on my newsletter??

I’ll use a masterful reframe and report that my long blogging absences are proof I’m really good at taking long blogging absences.  See how I did that?

Stories in Progress

I’m hard at work on two contemporaries and a historical.  Plot always slows me down, so I’m working on nailing that in these stories, and hopefully being able to release more frequently in the future! :fingers crossed:

Get Ready for the Upcoming Historical Release!

Deception is re-releasing this fall, so be sure you’re signed up for the newsletter to get all the updates!

Get Ready for the Upcoming Contemporary Romance!

I’ll also have a contemporary releasing, a sequel to SPIN.  Tentative title: DARE. If you like fun, super-sexy contemporary romances, you’ll love these books!

How to get ready, you ask??

Read Spin if you haven’t yet!  It’s currently available at Amazon, and if you have KU, you can read it through that.

Then sign up for the newsletter.  I’ll be announcing the release on both on the historical Kris Kennedy newsletter and my pseudonym newsletter, Bella Love. You can sign up for either to get the news.

Extended Excerpt

From DARE (tentative tile), sequel to SPIN

We drove home in the dark. Or rather, to Finn’s home, since my chokingly-expensive almost-three-thousand-dollars-a-month condo back in the city was now sub-let, giving me a brief respite before I had to decide what to really do. Hard, smart, dangerous Finn Dante, my oasis in the desert-like wasteland of my otherwise empty life.

Sitting beside me in his pick up, his eyes were on the dark highway before us. Cut from flesh and marble, he was part human, part demi-god. He had a sharp mind, a quiet, devastating confidence, and a mouth and mind so dirty it could get him jailed in several states. Finn was a former Ranger, now high-end pawn shop business owner and low-down alpha man, dangerous in ways you didn’t even see coming till he was already there, hard and confident and taking care of business.

His business had become me and my welfare.

Dangerous indeed. Because I didn’t know what my future held. Whereas Finn had a very certain, wonderful future that involved pawn and beams and struts and a horse farm and a generally quiet, problem-free life in this gorgeous mountain country, and I didn’t know if I was cut out for a quiet, problem-free life.

I was bred on problems. Needed them. Chaos, noise, trouble and toil, the sound and rich people’s fury: I ate it up. Breakfast of Champions. I didn’t know if I could exist with problems. And the idyllic mountain town of Destiny Falls didn’t have a whole of problems other than me and my missing career.

Finn’s kind of peacefulness was an alien world to me. Kind of like the one outside the truck window now. I looked through it at the nighttime desert, filled with strange, natural things I didn’t usually encounter. Wolves, snakes, starlight. Fresh air.

I stared out, the window rolled up tight. “What’s that?” I said in a low voice.

Finn glanced over, then through the window where my finger was pointing. “A tree.”

“Oh.” I lowered my hand.

“Nothing to be scared of.”

“I’m not scared. I’m wary.”

He grinned at me. I shifted my eyes and returned him a level look through the glow of his dashboard lights.

He yanked on the wheel and brought the car off the highway, to the side of the road. Then he killed the engine.

Bad choice of words. Killed. I stared at him.

The tick-tick-tick of the cooling engine frightened me

“Um, what are we doing?”

“I’ve got something to show you.” He opened his door.

“Is it bodies?” I called out. His door slammed shut. I watched him come around to my side. He swung my door open and I looked up at his dark shape, the night taking shape behind him. “Are you going to show me where bodies are buried?” I asked somberly.

He put out a hand. “Get out.”

“You’re scaring me.”

He hauled me out, reaching behind our seats to the small storage area and came out with a blanket. He tucked my hand into the crook of his elbow, threw the blanket over my shoulder, and started dragging me off into the bushes.

Okay, there were actually no bushes. It was open grassland, with a large, high hill on either side of the deserted highway.

“Is this legal?” I whispered as we climbed the hill.

“Walking? Yes.”

“I mean being out here.”

“In nature? Yes, it’s still legal.”

“This isn’t nature,” I muttered, eyeing the scrub brush. “It’s county right of way.” If there was one thing I knew, it was when someone was breaking the rules.

We began hiking up hillside beside highway. The sky was every shade of blue, from the palest blue at the horizon, to the deepest, black-blue of a bruise overhead. Soft, night breeze brushed over us, musky with the perfume of scorched earth and piñon needles burned by the sun through the day. Thin grasses rustled as the scented breeze nuzzled through their midst, like a sigh in church. Everything in the night world seemed to be alive and whispering to each other. Secret language.

“Isn’t this private property?” I murmured.

“We’re not bothering anyone.”

“Aren’t there wolves?”

“They always howl before they attack. It’s a warning signal. Three dashes and one long.”

I squinted at him. “That’s Morse code.”

He flung the blanket onto the dusty ground. “Scout’s honor. Grab an end.”

I grabbed a corner and drew it out. “Were you ever a boy scout?”

“Nope. But I can tie a knot. Wanna see?” He dropped to his knees on the blanket and held out his hand. A car raced by down on the highway.

“Finn.” It was half question, half warning.

“Janey, nothing’s going to hurt you out here. I swear. I’ll protect you from wolves and snakes.”

“And outraged landowners?”

He held up two fingers, close together. Scouts honor.

I was quiet a second. “What about rustlers?”

He grabbed my hand and pulled me down onto the blanket. “Lay the fuck down baby, and look up.”

Stiff as a board, I flattened my spine on the bright woven blanket, my hands fisted over my tightened stomach, my knees clamped together, my jaw fixed, and stared up.

“What are we looking at?” I said after a second.

“The cosmos.”

“Seriously.”

“I am being serious.”

His face was bathed in night and starshine, mostly dark, all but his gleaming eyes. I opened my mouth and he pointed to the sky.

“Stop talking. Look up.”

I looked.

For awhile, it was like staring at black construction paper. But slowly, as I relaxed and my eyes adjusted, and Finn breathed beside me and said nothing, the stars took shape. It was like silver fairy dust, like a pouch had been tipped over and the stars spilled out, sparking and shivering in the dark sky. It was the way I felt when Finn touched my body, and did everything but say the words. I love you.

“Oh wow,” I whispered.

“Wow,” Finn agreed, real low.

“I didn’t know.”

“I know. That’s Lyra,” he murmured, sliding an arm behind my shoulders and leaning up on his elbow to point.  “It’s supposed to look like a lyre.” His arm moved, tracing a jagged triangle through the air. “The god Apollo gave it to his son, Orpheus. He played for the Argonauts, who went with Jason to find the Golden Fleece. He played so well the wild beasts bowed for him, and even the rocks and trees were charmed.”

As he talked, his body was warm and solid beside me.

“Wow,” I said softly, but very intently, because right now, everything Finn did with his body or his mouth was of the utmost interest. “That’s fascinating.”

He went on in a low rumble, telling me about the nymph Orpheus had fallen in love with, and how she died running away from some asshole shepherd, and Orpehus’s heart had been broken, and how he’d gone hunting her down below in the underworld.  It was better than any lesson I’d learned in school, told in his low husky voice, but Finn was an aphrodisiac all his own. I didn’t even need the words, just the rumble of him, the heat of him, talking to me, one hand hung low over my belly, the other stretched out, pointing high in the sky at the tiny sparks of fire burning millions of light years away, feeling so close.

“Wow,” I whispered. I was still utterly interested, but no longer actually able to focus.

His low, instructional rumble paused. “Wow?”

I tilted my head to the side. “Not a wow?”

“I asked if you were cold.”

I laughed and leaned my head back on the ground, my face up to him. “Sorry, I kinda wasn’t listening.”

In the dim starshine, his face was dark as he gave me a slow smile. “What were you kinda doing?”

“Thinking how happy I am right now, learning about sky lyres. It kind of gets me hot,” I admitted in a whisper.

“Wow,” he said, as his muscled arm slipped beneath the blanket and clamped around me.

“Tell me more about Lyra.” I urged.

“Well, Vega is in Lyra,” he said as he rolled to his side and skimmed his hand down my side then went up on his knees to straddle me. “It’s one of  the brightest stars in the sky.”

“That’s incredible,” I said weakly as he nudged my legs apart.

“There’s a globular cluster in there too. Big one.”

“No way,” I whispered as he propped himself above me. “You know about lot about Lyra”

“Nick is filled with useless knowledge and he shares it whenever we get drunk.  Now, Jane, pull up your dress.”

I yanked it down and darted my eyes around. “No! We can’t. Not here.”

“Sure we can. It’s easy. Watch.” His hand went to my knees and tugged the sundress up.

Yep, it had been pretty easy.

I tried to pull it back down. “Finn,” I hissed. “This is someone’s private property.”

“Then don’t break anything.”

As there was nothing around us but sage brush and open sky, breakage wasn’t my biggest concern. It was the aforementioned private property, and owners with rifles, and how we were within sight of the highway, up here on this rise. Sure, you could see a car coming from five miles away in the everlasting darkness, but then again, you could see a car coming from five miles away.

His eyes locked on mine. “Scaredy cat.”

I frowned at him. “Stop doing that.”

“Nope.”

He leaned down to my neck and his teeth closed on the hot flesh of the curve of my neck and I was done for.

“Pull it up, baby,” he whispered, and I whispered “Damn you,” and did.

He made it worth my while, being so obedient, because his fingers began their magic again, and I felt him flip my skirt up further, over my belly, so everything was exposed to the moon and the stars and Finn’s perfect, sinful hands.

Does Janey find a way to make it in Finn’s world? Does Finn come clean about all the stuff he’s hiding as he works to make her world maybe a little too perfect, doing anything so she’ll stay with him? Do they have sex on the side of the road??

Sign up for the newsletter now to be alerted when it releases!!

And be sure to read SPIN!

Friday Excerpt! King's Warrior

Instead of an update on the anti-productivity of my week, I thought an excerpt was in order. Read on if you’ve ever wondered if it’s worth it to fight back..

The answer is yes! A resounding yes. Especially if you have an Irish outlaw at your side. 🔥 A word of warning, though: you have to pick your outlaws carefully, and at first, it might seem like you’ve made a terrible, terrible mistake…

King’s Warrior

♥♥♥

She’d never done such a thing before. Never defied, never fought back. It quite stirred the blood.

She felt ten feet tall— no, twelve. Surely her heart was larger now too—it was certainly beating harder than she ever recalled. She felt flushed and hot and full of energy and vigor. Like some wild thing, fierce and unrestrained.

It was…wonderful.

She spun to the knight, who was examining his sword. “I do thank you, sir,” she breathed, her eyes shining.

As if just recalling her, he jerked his head up, then strode over with such intense focus she took a step back. But her heart was still hammering with excitement and power, and she did not feel fear.

He drew up in front of her and cupped her cheek with a gloved hand, then tipped her face up to the dim light of fire and oil lamps.

“Are you hurt?” he asked in a gruff voice.

“No. No, I am quite well, thank-you,” she said politely.

A smile flickering across his face. “Den scoth.”

“And you?” she stammered.

Another flicker of amusement, this time in his eyes. “I am well, thank-you.”

Their eyes were close, so close she could see his were as dark as the rest of him, so deep a shade of brown they were almost black. Their mouths were closer even than their eyes, and their whispered conversation was being held at such close quarters, she felt his breath gust over her lips with every word. Hers skidded across his too, until the air between their mouths became a small heated geyser of the warrior’s breath and her own.

“I’ve never fought off soldiers before,” she said in a whisper.

“One would never know it.”

She smiled, recklessly happy. “I did rather well, did I not?”

“You were magnificent,” he drawled, a low male sound, and the hand cupping her cheek tightened ever so slightly.

Then, proof she’d turned entirely to a wild creature, she grinned into those hard, enigmatic eyes and said in an exultant whisper, “We did it.”

This time, amusement appeared as a full-on, darkly handsome smile. “Enjoyed that, did you? I’ll have to see if I can’t find us a tavern brawl later.”

She laughed, and his gaze dropped to her mouth. He was still cupping her face in his powerful, shockingly gentle hand. For seconds—three, four, five—he simply stared at her mouth, and all that had been fluttery and flushed in her became a veritable river of fast-moving heat and desire.

He is going to kiss me.

The thought made a wash of chills rise through her body as if she was a vessel being filled, then he brushed the calloused pad of his thumb across the corner of her mouth. “Your lip, lass. ’Tis cut.”

As if in a trance, she lifted her fingertip to the corner of her mouth and felt the smallest of cuts. Her fingertips came away with a spot of blood.

“Does it hurt?” he asked.

“Oh no,” she whispered.

His thumb still rested at the corner of her mouth as his gaze made the slow climb to her eyes, and her head tipped back the barest inch.

Oh, yes, he was going to kiss her. And she was going to let him.

♥♥♥

Amazon | iTunes | Nook | Kobo | GooglePlay

Flash Sale!

Hey kids!  Preempting today’s weekly wrap-up  (and not because I was mostly a slug this week. No, it’s not why.  Truly. Hey, stop with the skeptical frowns…)

No really, it’s because I have…

A very temporary flash sale for you!

CAPTURED BY A CELTIC WARRIOR, the bestselling anthology I did with 3 writer friends, is on sale right now for 99c.  If you haven’t got the antho yet, today’s the day!Captured by a Celtic Warrior by Kris Kennedy

Let me break down the perhaps hidden tropes in the anthology, to help convince you need it NOW.

There are warriors.

There are Celts. Three Scotsman and an Irishman. But wait, there’s more!

There are abductions.

There is an abundance of sexytimes. Let me repeat: abundance.

Things are said like:

“Lass, you do not want what I have.” As if to prove it, he overturned his hand and dragged a calloused thumb roughly across her bottom lip.

All the breath came out of her in a hot rush. “Oh.”

It was a gasp of arousal, of desire and pent-up wanting, as far as she could retrieve the recollection from the dusty cabinet of her mind. It made her want to weep for the lost memory of it.

He watched her with dark, unreadable eyes, then slid his thumb back again, a little harder, rolling her lip down the slightest bit.

She tipped her head back and let her mouth part under the rough caress.

“That is a mistake,” he ground out. “You do not realize….”  He shook his head once. “How much I want you.”

She stepped to him, pressed her breasts up against him. His thighs were hard against the front of hers, the hilts of his weapons bumped against her hips and belly, and dark, dangerous desire burned in his eyes. She wanted all of it. All of him.

“Show me.”  She slid her arms around his neck. “For I have been dying to be wanted the way you do.”

And woo-boy, does he show her. Wanna see??  Go get it! 

Amazon | iBooks | BN/Nook | Kobo

Have fun out there!

 

 

Help An Author Out...Plus a Kiss

Okay, girls, I’m gonna need a cover for the upcoming release of THE KING’S OUTLAW. Who wants to help??

 THE KING’S OUTLAW originally appeared in the anthology Captured by a Celtic Warrior.  

← Here’s the cover from the antho. ←

It’s HOT, and will be revised for this standalone release with some additional scenes of hotness and adventure, to make it worth your while.  

If you enjoy perusing images of hot guys & sexy clinch embraces, using your design eye &/or readerly “Oh, yeah, I’d buy that guy,” sensibilities, this is totally for you!

Just post any link(s) to image(s) you think are worthy of consideration in the comments. Nothing’s off limits, and everyone’s welcome! 

My only requirements are that it screams “medieval/knight” and “drop-to-your-knees sexy.” 

Feel free to share this far & wide with your romance reading buddies!  Got a photographer friend with warrior-esque shots in their portfolio? Pimp ’em like a pimp!

If we pick the image you suggest, you AND ANY 2 FRIENDS YOU WANT get a copy of the ebook!! Because this is all about helping each other out.

Tips: If you don’t know much about searching for images…. Stock photo sites are usually the best places, like istockphoto, shutterstock, bigstock, fotolia, 123rf.com or dreamstime (all followed by .com) You can enter various search terms. Different sites allow different amounts of control over the parameters (such as controlling for the gender of models, or number of models, etc). Play around, and have fun!

Here’s an excerpt from the first kiss of THE KING’S OUTLAW. One of my favorite kinds: the ruse kiss!

***

…There was nothing for it; he made his decision in a heartbeat.  

Sliding his hands up her arms, he spun her and almost flung her up against the side of the nearest building, then reached up and tore off her headdress.

“Good Heaven’s,” she cried, her hands flying up to capture the silky veil, but he already had it off and was tugging off her distinctive cloak next.

“Mon Dieu,” she gasped, grappling for the cloak, but he fisted it and the veil together in his hand, down by his hip, then stretched out an arm and planted his palm on the wall, blocking her face from the visitors now hurrying down the quay.

“Kiss me,” he ordered.

Her pale face tilted up, full of shock and confusion. “I beg your pardon?”

“Kiss me, then run.”

“What?”

“If you kiss me, you’re a whore. If you stand there staring, you’re a merchant with a pouch of stolen seals in her hand.”

Magdalena looked down at the pouch, then up at him, into his beautiful, no-doubt criminal, eyes. Then she pushed on her toes and kissed him.

She could have done nothing more ill-advised.

She had barely touched her lips to his when he descended, his mouth hard and slanting. He plowed her open with teeth and tongue, exploring the depths of her wet mouth with sinful abandon.  There was no prelude, no warning, no kindness or care, no quarter given. She was a whore and he was having her.

He played the ruse exceptionally well.

Dizziness and heat swooped in for her like hunting birds, dispelling sense and reason and anything else that might have been of use to her at the moment. She could do nothing but cling to him, her hands around his neck, her head forced back, her spine cupped, her body…thrilling.

Madness. Madness, all.

The hand not holding her cloak and wimple closed around her hip and began to tug up her skirts. She made a feeble attempt to stop him, but his grip grew fierce, and he yanked on the gown, dragged it up the side of her leg until she felt cool air on her shin and calf.

Her head spun as if she’d been twirled like a top. Picked up by a bird and sent flying.

Her knees grew weak, but she did not break the kiss. She could not. He’d become a field of energy, the way a metal filing is pulled toward iron, or how one drop of water clings to another. She was affixed to his kiss, to his chest, which she’d somehow pressed up against, to his shoulders, which she’d somehow wrapped her arms around, to his tongue, which was tangled with hers, his hot male breath, his cunning male hand, his hard knee now making all manner of incursions between her thighs, and she, she, reveling in it.

This could not end well.

***

Or COULD  IT????

Have fun out there!