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A Ghost of a Chance by Abigail Owen
What’s a girl to do when her brother’s ghost appears asking for help? If that wasn’t bad enough, finding her not-dead-yet brother’s body before he becomes permanently spectral isn’t her only problem. Josie can’t save him on her own. The only person who can help is the last person who would want to. Bryce Evans, a man she once wrapped hopes of her future around, can’t stand to be near her. How can she convince him when her evidence is a ghost he can’t see?
Josie was in trouble. Noticing Bryce’s great butt had to be completely inappropriate at this moment in time. Josie had a sneaking suspicion inappropriate didn’t begin to cover it, but how could she look away with said butt directly in her face?
Of course, today was no exception. She’d always been hyper aware regarding the perfection that was Bryce’s body—broad shoulders, trim waist, and six-pack that begged to be stroked. Every woman in town, even the taken ones, unanimously acknowledged that his dark hair, warm brown eyes, strong jaw, and deep voice made Bryce a welcome star in any sexual fantasy. Didn’t help that he was also smart, genuinely nice, and occasionally funny. He’d been starring in her fantasies for years, though these days were quite different from her teenage years.
Josie gave herself a mental slap. Quit it. He hates you, and you aren’t allowed to like him. Right? After the incident during her freshman year of college, she’d shut him out. Shut everyone out. For good reason too.
“Are you staring at my best friend’s butt?” A masculine voice interrupted her thoughts.
She flicked a glance at the spectral image of her brother.
Peter hovered along beside her and rolled his eyes. “Of course not. What was I thinking? You can’t stand each other.”
That hurt. As a girl, Bryce was her own personal hero, and she’d harbored a massive crush. Then, the summer before she went to college, they spent a day together fishing. He kissed her. Not a chaste kiss either, but one that surpassed every girlish fantasy she’d pinned on him. She’d hoped….
No. That ship had sailed long ago, about the time she had come home for Christmas break her freshman year of college. So why did she still blush when she caught one of those intense stares of his? Because she was into self-torture apparently.
Peter flipped around to float backwards and peered into her face. “Unless you secretly still have a crush.”
Josie snorted and hoped he believed it.
Bryce paused and looked over his shoulder at her. “Problem?”
She swatted a hand around. “Bug.”
Peter laughed, the sound pinging around her in the oddest way, as though it had no single source. “I resemble that remark,” he said.
Unaware of the byplay between her and Peter, Bryce nodded. “Let’s pause for a water break here.”
Dangerous Dreams, by J.C. McKenzie
As a dragon shifter in hiding, Lara Stone wants nothing to do with others of her kind or finding a mate. No way, no how. She's perfectly content to work for a security company, masquerading as a simple mage. When the leader of all the dragon clans personally requests her as a bodyguard, Lara fears her secret is blown, or worse. What danger could possibly make Rafael Dragoi, the powerful Astarot, seek protection?
The large double doors loomed in front of her. Instead of grabbing the intricately designed dragon handles, she wrapped her knuckles against the smooth wood and took a deep breath.Myths and Legends 101, by L.A. Kelley
With her heart in her throat, Lara ran her hands along the beautiful dragon handles and pushed open the heavy door. She’d never met Rafael Dragoi, and had hoped to keep it that way. As the leader of not only the Obsidian Dragon Clan, but the whole enclave, he would be a fierce alpha—exhibiting the very best and worst traits in the package.
Why had Rafael Dragoi requested her for a job? As far as anyone in her agency was concerned, she was a lowly mage.
I can think of some jobs to do for him, purred her dragon.
A tall man, with broad shoulders and powerful stature, faced the floor to ceiling windows with his hands clasped behind his back, presumably watching the world outside.
“Astarot Dragoi,” Lara said formally.
The Astarot turned slowly. His power radiated out and licked her skin. Flowing over her body, his energy called to her own and sent heat racing through her veins.
Her dragon pressed against the locked cages and moaned.
“Miss Stone.” Midnight hair framed chiseled features. His striking dragon-green gaze smouldered, as his power rolled over her in sensuous waves.
“A bit tacky to feel up the help, don’t you think?” With a mental flick of her hand, Lara slapped his magic away. As a female dragon shifter, she possessed a significant amount of power herself.
Flickering lights. Strange drifting shadows. Unnatural cold. Anthropology professor Jim Calloway is convinced the recent eerie phenomena at Octavian College are due to his overactive imagination until he meets Keilana Yamada and her eccentric grandfather, Toshi. Dazzled by the beautiful Keilani, Jim volunteers to help hunt for an ancient evil roaming the ivied halls. Can a mild-mannered academic find his inner demon hunter and a way into Keilani’s heart? Or will a supernatural predator with an insatiable hunger destroy them first?
Deep in thought, Jim pulled up one step short of walking into a wall. He glanced around in annoyance. Where the hell was he? He retraced his route. Perhaps, that last turn was right instead of left. He hit another dead end.The Keeper, by Sharon Saracino
An icy draft skittered across his cheek. Jim shivered and picked up the pace. He turned another corner and came upon a long dimly lit corridor. At the far end was a door with an illuminated exit sign overhead. Relieved, Jim took a step.
The temperature plummeted to glacial levels. The letters on the sign flickered.
He swallowed. “It’s an old building. The wiring is bad.”
Tick-TICK-tick-TICK. The hall light flicked on and off.
Jim broke into a trot. His foot hit something hard and slick. He momentarily lost his balance and put out a hand, steadying himself against the wall. The concrete block surface was icy cold to the touch.
“Just the air conditioning,” he croaked with a bone dry mouth.
The small hairs rose on the back of his neck. For the second time in one day, the eerie sensation of being watched settled over him. Jim peered at the deep shadows crisscrossing the far end of the hallway. Out of the corner of his eye, something fluttered.
When a stranger lands on her slab, poisoned with silver and reeking of vampire, Medical Examiner Olivia Duncan fears someone's discovered her dangerous secret. Enter Nick Alexios, a mysterious man with a hidden agenda of his own. Olivia ignites his passion and challenges his loyalties, making him question his duty. Nick might be Olivia’s salvation...or her downfall. Will honor-bound promises drive them apart or unite them against threats from both near and far?
Olivia froze when she saw the Sex-in-a-Suit following close on Jack’s heels. Dark hair waved back from a high forehead, sculpted cheekbones, and a long, straight nose. Broad shoulders strained the seams of his suit jacket, and his crisp shirt glowed snowy white against the smooth, olive skin of his throat. His golden brown gaze drew her in like iron filings to a magnet.Witch You Were Here, by Maureen L. Bonatch
Her chin rose as the two men drew level with her. The corners of the stranger’s full, well-formed lips curled slightly. Shifter? Definitely. But, who and what was he?
“Hey, Liv.” Jack swept off his police cap and tucked it under his arm. “Wanted to introduce you to the new guy since, as Medical Examiner, your paths are bound to cross. This is Detective Nick Alexios. Nick, this is Dr. Olivia Duncan.”
“Doctor.” The stranger’s faint accent made her simple professional title sound like a proposition. He flashed a blinding white smile and stuck out a hand. “A pleasure.”
“Detective.” Olivia took his hand, and her mouth went oddly dry when he bowed over it and raised it to his lips in lieu of the expected handshake. A spark of heat ignited low in her belly and spread, raising the fine hairs on the back of her neck. “Alexios. That’s Greek, yes? You’re a long way from home.”
“Indeed. But, what one seeks is sometimes found in the most unexpected places.”
Olivia glanced at their joined hands. “I can’t imagine what anyone hopes to find in a place as small and remote as Cedar Creek.”
“Can’t you?” Alexios arched a dark brow, squeezed her fingers, and then released them.
He reached to tug the cuff of his shirt over his wrist, but not before Olivia caught a glimpse of the ink on its inner surface, a crown clutched in a wicked looking talon. The design of the tattoo exactly matched the birthmark on her hip. She swallowed a gasp, and her gaze flew to his. His smile stretched even wider.
Who in hell was this guy?
Lucy is a witch with a successful business righting magical mischief. A call for help from her high-school heartache, Shane, prompts Lucy to manage his magical mayhem herself. No longer a nervous, hormonal, teenager, Lucy takes the case to force an apology and bury her past humiliation. To her surprise, Shane insists he couldn’t forget Lucy—because she hexed him ten years ago. Will Shane and Lucy put their past behind them, or will the spell prove permanent?
“So you’re saying you forgot what you did to me?”
Lucy started at his cocky demeanor. The high school grudge would need to be buried before she could act as his enchanted guide. Otherwise she might be tempted to overlook it if he accidentally spelled off a toe or two of his own during his transition. “What I did to you? What are you talking about? How about what you did to me?” Empathy temporarily forgotten, anger bubbled to the surface. She tapped her finger against her chest. “You’re the one who taunted me and made my life so miserable that I had to change my name.”
He sputtered a protest. “That wasn’t me.”
“Yeah, right. You can lay on the charm with the other ladies, but it won’t work on me. Remember, I’m a witch—”
“How could I forget?” Shane rose to his feet and braced hands on his hips.
“Apparently you did,” Lucy scoffed. “I’m a witch, so I don’t forget…anything. Ever.”
A scowl twisted his face. “Well, neither can I, thanks to you.” He removed his suit jacket and threw it over his chair. He unbuttoned his shirt.
Lucy’s mouth snapped open. One by one Shane released the buttons to reveal the tank top he wore underneath. The thin fabric emphasized the defined muscles of his chest. She swallowed. “What are you doing?”
“Providing you with a visual reminder,” he snapped. “Maybe this will stir your memory.”
Born and raised on the Haida Gwaii, off the West Coast of Canada, J.C. McKenzie grew up in a pristine wilderness that inspired her to dream. She writes Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance.
Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/j.c.mckenzie.author
Twitter Page: www.twitter.com/JC_McKenzie
The Wild Rose Press: http://www.wildrosepublishing.com
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Award-winning paranormal and contemporary romance author, Abigail Owen was born in Greeley, Colorado, and resides in Austin, Texas, with her husband and two adorable children who are the center of her universe.
Abigail grew up consuming books and exploring the world through her writing. A fourth generation graduate of Texas A&M University, she attempted to find a practical career related to her favorite pastime by earning a degree in English Rhetoric (Technical Writing). However, she swiftly discovered that writing without imagination is not nearly as fun as writing with it.
J.C. McKenzie is a book-loving, gumboot-wearing, unapologetic science geek. She's from an island in the middle of a temperate rainforest, and loves the ocean. She currently lives in land-locked, rural Saskatchewan, which holds a magnificent beauty of its own, but she still finds herself dreaming of the deep blue and missing it terribly. J.C. writes predominantly urban fantasy and paranormal romance with sassy heroines and brutish alpha-type men.
L.A. Kelley lives in Florida where the heat and humidity have driven them
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