First he was a cowboy then…….

he was a country rock singer, then a star, until it all came crashing down.

Down-stroke

noun

the technique used by musicians who perform on string instruments in which the pick is moved in a downward motion relative to the position of the instrument against one or more of the strings to make them vibrate.

And oh yeah, a good downstroke can make something else vibrate, too.

Twenty years ago Dallas Creed and Charley Roper were lovers with their entire future ahead of them. Until they split. Badly. Now he’s a country rock icon who made it to the top, hit bottom but is back at the top of his game. And Charley’s the private security specialist hired to protect him from an unknown killer in stalking mode. Caught up in the bitter wash of memories they begin a roller coaster ride that is suspenseful, emotional and erotic. Is their love strong enough to erase the past and bring them back together before the killer strikes again?Downstroke_MED

Note: this is one of my favorite scenes in the book and is based on a real event from the years when I managed rock and country rock bands

So here I was, waiting for my first glimpse of the man on a stage since he and his pickup band played the Raccoon Saloon all those years ago. It was time to find out if I’d actually managed to wipe Dallas Creed out of my system. If bottling up my emotions and using other men to wipe away traces and memories of him had worked at all.

The night had a magical quality to it, a perfect Texas night with stars blinking against a black velvet sky. A very soft breeze stirred the air, chasing away the last heat of the day. The sense of expectancy in the outdoor concert facility was nearly palpable. Anticipation fairly zapped through the air like bolts of energy. I could even feel it myself, the kind of feeling you got on Christmas morning when you ran downstairs, or when you were right on the brink of the most outstanding orgasm you’d ever had. Seventy-five hundred people moved restlessly in their seats in front of me. An almost equal amount were spread out on the rise of the hill behind me, drinking and staring at the stage with binoculars, even though at the moment there was nothing to see. They were all waiting for the same thing.

The curtain was drawn across the stage, heightening the edge of expectancy. Especially for me, much as I hated to admit it. What was behind there? What was his band like now after they’d tasted success once and were back on top with him again?

I could feel the energy sizzling through the crowd. Well, why not? If nothing else, Dallas Creed had always had an electric presence. Add in the staging, his suck-my-tongue voice and the electricity of his music and you had a knockout winner.

The soft notes of a viola floated in the air from behind the curtain, joined immediately by violins, and I wondered what the hell? Violins? Then I realized it was a synthesizer. And obviously a damn good musician coaxing music from it. The sound that mimicked violins seemed to hold the audience in thrall, as if they were expectantly awaiting a grand moment. The music built and built as the magician behind the synthesizer added the full-throated sounds of woodwinds and the rich tones and powerful chords of an organ, swelling to a crescendo. The last note held and held and held, flowing out into the crowd, pulling at us as if to say, Wait for it, it’s coming.

Then I heard the familiar first downstroke of the rhythm guitars as they began the intro to the first song. The curtain drew back slowly to reveal the band onstage, the bass guitar and keyboards now adding their voices, the drums accenting them with a syncopated beat.

All sound ended abruptly and the crowd stilled for a breathless moment. The band launched into a rich intro to one of Dallas’ hits, an upbeat tune called Cowboys Get It Right, a song I realized the synthesizer had laid the foundation for. The spotlight came up and the man himself jogged onto the stage.

To my dismay, my traitorous heart tripped at the sight of him and an emotion I refused to name clogged my throat. Dallas Creed was definitely a lot older, forty-three to the twenty-three he’d been the last time I saw him in person. Newspaper photos had kept me up with his aging process, but no picture could do justice to the energy still radiating from this man. The energy that had drawn me to him in the first place.

AMAZON.  KOBO.   BARNES & NOBLE

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Email me at: authordesireeholt@gail.com

 

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#12DaysofDesire with Sarah M. Anderson!

Hi everyone, I hope you had a great Thanksgiving! Mine was really good–family was delightful and the turkey turned out great! But now I’ve got the flu and it isn’t any fun at all. Take my advice–don’t get sick!

The Harlequin Desire authors have a fun promotion going on right now–the #12DaysofDesire! Every day a different Desire author sponsors a special giveaway (Mine was Dec. 5) so head over to the Harlequin Desire Authors and check out all the great contests going on!

AND DO NOT GET SICK! 🙂

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A Month of Giveaways! Plus a Contest!

I love the run-up to the holidays! Everyone’s so busy! For the first time ever, I have all my gifts purchased in advance. I have a few left to make (I dabble in jewelry!), but that’s part of the fun, too—trying to figure out what will please the women and girls in this family. But then I wondered what I might do for my online friends and readers! Here’s what I came up with! (Lots of exclamation marks here, I know, but I’m excited!!!!)

Anyway, here’s the deal. Throughout the month on the Delilah’s Collections website, I and some of the wonderful authors who’ve appeared in my collections will be giving away our stories! My suggestion, if you’re interested in collecting them, is to subscribe to the Collections blog. Look for the sign-up in the right column. It says “Subscribe To Blog Via Email”—easy-peasy, right? That way you won’t  miss a single offering. And beware! These free stories will only be available for a short time, so jump on them!

So, here’ the first…

All you have to do is click on the cover above, and you’ll head to
where you can download your copy.
Don’t know what a Skjaldmaer is? It’s a Shieldmaiden!

ConquestsThis story first appeared in the Conquests anthology, which features 13 stories by some very talented authors. The entire collection is just $.99! So, if you’re in the mood to meet a slew of sexy, very alpha Viking warriors, check it out: Conquests!

And let me know in the comments below whether you’re subscribing to the Collections blog and intend to follow the authors as we provide you samples of our story-telling abilities! One lucky commenter will receive her choice of one of my recent releases! 

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GIVEAWAY–by Rhonda Lee Carver

 

Protectedythelawmanfinal

Pre-order here!

The hat. The gun. And the will to protect.

Showing up to investigate a double homicide, Sheriff Phoenix Cade almost comes out of his boots when he sees the blonde–the only witness to the crime–covered in blood. He’d danced with her a few nights before and had every intention of getting her number until she threw up all over his shoes. Hell, his shoes would wash…

Ria Portman has spent the better part of six years convincing her family and friends that she could take care of herself. The accident took her sight, but it didn’t take her independence. There were a lot of things she’d learned over the years, especially regarding men. They said they could handle her disability, but truth was, they lied. When her assistant and client are murdered in her studio she will have to rely on one man—the one man who makes her want to trust again.

Phoenix is over his ex, but since he caught her cheating he’s compared relationships to playing with fire. It’s only a matter of time before a man gets burnt. Yet, Ria is different. She’s beautiful, smart, challenging, and doesn’t need him…even when she does. He should keep his head on straight because the killers want her dead and it’s his job to keep her safe. However, he’s realizing, a man in love becomes a giant. He’ll protect Ria with a force unlike any that has ever been seen before.

Giveaway12

~~~**~~~GIVEAWAY~~~**~~~

One random winner will receive a $5 Amazon GC.

To enter, like, comment, share and tag your friends. Each tag is one entry.

Like this page
https://www.facebook.com/rhondaleecarver.author/

Winner announced at the end of the day on 12/5/17!

 

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NaNo Month

NaNo stands for National Novel Writing Month, if you didn’t know that already.

I’ve tried NaNo for several years, every November 1st I start with good intentions and by mid-November realize I’m failing and stop trying. Well, this November was different.

The reason it was different is because, I have my two publishers willing to take on my doing two different series. One series is 4 books about 4 brothers, and the other is a 5 books about 4 brothers and 1 sister.

Knowing this, I had to jump on the production bandwagon because I only had 1 book done in each series. So I decided this NaNo would be different. The week before NaNo I sat down and went over and planned out the book the only thing I didn’t do was an outline (that was a mistake).

But even without the outline, I managed to write 50,266 words by November 27. It was a challenge at times, but I gave myself permission to just write the story. Let the characters tell it the way they wanted and it can be fixed later.

I wouldn’t want to do this every month because I’ll admit by November 25 I was already exhausted and not sure I could write anymore. It did give me some clarity into my writing process.

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and because I won’t blog again until next month have a wonderful Christmas.

dreamstime_l_46993513

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Authors4Veterans Giveaway!

After delivering our gift bags to Fisher House, it’s time to give you readers the chance to win one of these amazing bags.  We have four insanely awesome bags to give away and the best news is they’ll be mailed out before Christmas, so enter for the chance for yourself or the reader on your shopping list.

Here’s what you could win:

Vets4readers FB

3 Runner Up Reader Bags $160/ea Value:

Thirty-One Thermal Tote, 8-10 signed books, audio book, socks, handmade card pack, assorted extras, and more awesome author swag!

http://authors4veterans.com/2017/11/its-giveaway-time/ 

Grand Prize $250+ Value:

A4V monogramed Thirty-One Weekender Bag, 10 signed books, 1 audio book, fuzzy socks, post-it pack, nail kit, handmade card set, handmade bookmark, filled toiletry bag, candle, and lots of author swag!

What do you need to do to enter?  Click on the Rafflecopter below and enter as many times as you’d like.

Giveaway ends at 12:00 a.m. December 11, 2017.

Stay up to date on our charity, participating author releases and contests (yes, we have a few more goodies to give away over the coming months) by signing up for our newsletter here.

Authors, if you’re interested in hearing about our next charity drive, please sign up here to be notified when we’re accepting authors.  

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Winners must collect their prizes within 30 days or they are forfeit.

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Donna Michaels: Grinch Reaper is almost here

I’m getting excited! In a little over two weeks, I’ll be able to share my Sleeper SEAL with the world! If you like some action, humor, and heat with your holiday cheer, then I hope you pre-order your copy of Grinch Reaper today! 😉

grinch reaper

The only thing Matteo “Reaper” Santarelli hates more than Christmas is having to leave the teams to take over his family’s chain of pizza joints after his father suffers a stroke. So when the Sleeper SEALs team he joined upon discharge tasks him with a local mission, he’s happy to toss the dough aside to track down and interrogate the leader of the cell to gather intel on threats to Atlantic City over the holiday season. But the simple snatch ‘n grab assignment turns complicated when his path crosses with his kid sister’s beautiful best friend—a former Marine hell bent on wiping out his mark.

Blackjack dealer by day, Isabella “Banshee” Monroe hunts terrorists for a living as part of a secret government task force. For over a decade and a half, she’s waited for the terrorist responsible for her father’s death to come into her crosshairs and isn’t about to let anyone come between her and her sanctioned mission—not even her best friend’s gorgeous older brother—the guy she’s crushed on since childhood.

Finding the leader is easy. Keeping the target safe from Bella is nearly impossible. Almost as impossible as fighting the attraction sizzling between them. But when they discover the threat is bigger than expected, can they stop fighting each other long enough to work together to neutralize the whole cell before the countdown ushers in more than the impending New Year?

** Grinch Reaper is loosely connected to the Dangerous Curves Series. It is also in the “Sleeper SEAL” connected series. Each book is a standalone novel, and the series does not have to be read in order.**

Pre-Order your copy here!

grinch-reaper-2

Thanks for reading,

~Donna

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The Naked Cowboys are back and knocking on yo ur door!

Naked Cowboys

Stark Naked .. THIS BOOK IS FREE!

After Reenie bumps into her friend’s very sexy, very naked brother, she decides to keep her distance, but he shows up at her door the next morning asking she doesn’t let first impressions ruin what could be a whole lot of fun.

Matt quickly realizes none of his usual lines will work on Reenie, which only adds to his desire to get her to lower her defenses around him.

ALL THE REST ARE JIUST 99 CENTS.

You can collect all eight (8) Naked Cowboys for just $6.93. They’ll keep you warm this winter.

\Buck Naked

When a cowboy stops to help Amy change a flat, she’s convinced her run of luck isn’t going to change any time soon. Buck is far too confident and cocky for her. Buck made his mark on the rodeo circuit, but the lifestyle left its on marks on him. He knows he should tell Amy about his past before she hears it elsewhere, but every time he opens his mouth, all he can do is kiss her…

Stripped Naked

Jinx thought moving from New York to Rowan Country would mean an end to reporting on murders and dealing with grumpy police who see her as a nuisance. After only a few weeks on the job, someone finds a dead body in a ditch, and Sheriff Dillon Cross is butting heads with the sexy local reporter. They get on like two angry hornets trapped in an upturned glass, but soon it’s more than heated barbs they’re exchanging.

Bare Naked

Georgie invests everything she owns in a dilapidated B&B in Saddle Wells, Texas, so when a rough-around-the-edges cowboy offers his handyman services, she accepts his help in exchange for room and board.

Cade’s a down-on-his-luck cowboy with a reputation so bad no one will hire him. Luckily for Cade, newcomer Georgie doesn’t know anything about the man he used to be. But not everyone is ready to give Cade a second chance, and their newfound happiness could disappear like smoke.

Naked Desire

All Cynthia has left after her divorce is her grandfather’s secret barbecue-spice-rub recipe. She’s determined to start over in Saddle Wells, but she’s totally unprepared for her reaction to the carpenter her new friends recommend.

Jesse is more than happy to renovate Cyn’s storefront, but what he’d really love to do is tackle that self-doubt he sees lurking in her eyes, but first he has to convince her to give them a chance despite their age difference.

Naked Flame

On a night out, former cop Charity notices the brooding bar owner needs help, so she steps in and ends up right in his arms.

After two tours in Afghanistan, Liam now runs his dad’s bar. Having Charity around is a distraction, but he can’t seem to deny whatever there is between them.

When a criminal comes looking for revenge, Charity knows it will be better for everyone if she leaves town, but leaving Liam is more difficult than she thought.

Naked Heat

Andrew “Mac” McDaniel is on a mission to find the drunk driver who killed his twin sister, and his latest lead has brought him to Saddle Wells. When realtor Nida hands over the keys, something sparks between them. But even as undeniable interest turns to hot nights together, Nida is not sure she can stand by and watch him destroy himself when his investigation sends him on a path toward a potentially disastrous act of revenge.

Naked Hunger

Raising livestock in Saddle Wells isn’t as exciting as the pro circuit for local rancher Ryan, but the sweet new vet in town certainly livens things up. Sable claims she has no time for a relationship, so Ryan suggests they have some friends-with-benefits fun while he convinces her she doesn’t have to choose between career and love. But when a costly mistake puts her career in jeopardy, Sable could lose everything.

 

https://www.amazon.com/Naked-Cowboys-8-Book-Series/dp/B076VMYPDG/ref=sr_1_2?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1511303303&sr=1-2&keywords=Naked+Cowboys

 

https://www.kobo.com/us/en/search?Query=Naked+Cowboys

 

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/Naked+Cowboys?_requestid=755953

 

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/book/stark-naked/id1299748926?mt=11

 

Watch for promotions in the Desiree Holt Readers Group special for that group only.

Giveaways, announcements, early release information, contests.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/304091733397428/

Email me at authordesireeholtgmail.com

Follow me on Bookbub

https://www.bookbub.com/search?search=Desiree+Holt

Follow me on Amazon:

https://www.amazon.com/Desiree-Holt/e/B003LD2Q3M/

 

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Tickets Going Fast! Wild Deadwood Reads Book Signing and Legendary Events

Looking for Legendary Events? We’ve got them at Wild Deadwood Reads 2018!

Deadwood Vacation

You are officially invited and welcomed to attend Wild Deadwood Reads Book Signing and Legendary Events in Deadwood, South Dakota. You’ll find so many things to do, including fun and adventurous outings planned just for us that weekend, Register right away so you won’t miss out on any of the excitement! Everything starts Thursday evening, June 7, with a Meet-and-Greet Cocktail Hour on the patio overlooking Deadwood. Check out the view!

View from the Patio

View of Deadwood from the Deadwood Mountain Grand.

Wild Deadwood Reads has grown since year one. In June, we had just under 50 authors, and since we’ve already registered more than 75 authors for 2018, we’re projecting we’ll double our author roster to around 100 for next June! To accommodate this bigger and more Legendary event, we’re taking over the entire, amenity-packed Deadwood Mountain Grand Hotel, and we’ve negotiated a fabulous rate for guest rooms for you from Wednesday through Sunday night, so you can come in early, stay an extra day, or do both!

Deadwood Mountain Grand

Our Hotel – the new and upscale Deadwood Mountain Grand

Get ready to jump onto a luxury motorcoach with 54 of your new friends-to-be on Friday morning for an all-inclusive sightseeing tour including three amazing destinations around the Black Hills.

Big Thunder Gold Mine

Big Thunder Gold Mine

Crazy Horse Monument

Crazy Horse Monument

Prairie Berry Winery

Prairie Berry Winery

Saturday morning you’ll enjoy a hot, delicious Breakfast With the Authors right in our hotel, in the Deadwood Mountain Grand’s Event Center on the second floor above the Non-Smoking casino. At one end of the Event Center we’ll relax over a scrumptious hot buffet breakfast, and at the other end are the ready-to-rock tables for the Author Book Signing!

Deadwood Mountain Grand Wild Deadwood Reads Book Signing

The book signing begins Saturday morning at 10:00 am in the Event Center which is accessible by escalator, elevator, and stairs, and there’s lots of room for us at this lovely venue! We’ll even have vendor tables where local small businesses will tempt you with everything from hair pretties to chocolate!

Book Signing

Aaron Bunce and his #1 Helper

During the Book Signing, you’ll have the chance to win something fabulous at the Basket Raffle, which will support a local non-profit organization. Authors, cover models, sponsors, and vendors are all very busy dreaming up the perfect goodies to place into a basket to catch your attention! Check out the basket examples on our website!

Saturday afternoon, we have The Rodeo! Right in town, it’s a gasp-provoking Professional Bull Riders Rodeo with the rankest bulls in the territory. We’re lucky to have an exclusive VIP Package, Behind the Chutes, where we’ll watch PBR Bullriders and stock contractors show us how they load the bulls into the chutes, and how the cowboys get themselves onto the bulls – for at least 8 seconds! We’ll enjoy VIP reserved seating for the rodeo, bus transportation both to and from the rodeo grounds, a special dinner after the rodeo at the No. 10 Saloon’s upstairs restaurant (in close walking distance of our hotel) featuring an entertaining show created just for us by our Rodeo hosts! Afterward, head downstairs for a live band at the official after-hours hangout for the Bullriders and all the rodeo staff. Get your cameras ready – they love to show off their belt buckles!

PBR Rodeo

2017 PBR Deadwood Rodeo

If you’re not in a Rodeo mood, we have the perfect event for you! Hosted at a downtown hot spot, Wild Bill Bar, in walking distance from our hotel, join authors and readers for Wild Book Readings at Wild Bill Bar – with DESSERT! This sweet event takes us on a trip back in time as we head to their private, upstairs room which has been lovingly refurbished to look like a Victorian theater with bistro seating. A cash bar, an author-sponsored dessert bar of delicacies, and authors reading you their favorite scenes from their own books. Mix, mingle, and indulge! This event will be Legendary.

There’s so much to do and see in Deadwood and all around the area, you’ll have a must-see list that’ll keep you busy all weekend. And we give you plenty of time to explore on your own! Walking the streets of historic downtown Deadwood, you can easily imagine Wild Bill Hickok tipping his hat as he passes you on the sidewalk. Or Calamity Jane causing a ruckus at a noisy saloon. Or Seth Bullock facing down a gunslinger and sending him on his way to Mount Moriah Cemetery, just up the hill from town. And, well, you don’t have to imagine any of this. Deadwood stages free shootouts right on Main Street!

Wild Deadwood Reads Reader Registration is only $10 which includes a handy neck wallet and two more wonderful gifts which are listed on the website. Besides being the perfect spot for your phone and other essentials, the neck wallet holds your name tag which allows you to sign up for all the great weekend events listed above, some of which are FREE! Check out our website http://wilddeadwoodreads.com/ and our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/wilddeadwoodreads/ to see everything that you can experience! I am thrilled to be going to Deadwood next June, and I want to make sure you don’t let this awesome opportunity slip your mind or slide off your calendar. Register today and you’ll be all set to have one of the best, Wildest, and most Legendary times you’ll ever experience!

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Delilah Devlin: Montana Bounty Hunters — Reaper

Can you tell I’m jumping up and down? My baby is out in the world, and I can’t wait until you read it! And bounty hunters are almost like cowboys, right? 🙂

Former Marine, Reaper Stenberg is a bounty hunter, running his own satellite agency of Montana Bounty Hunters, along with his partner, Jamie Burke. As a general rule, Reaper doesn’t like working with a partner, especially female partners. When chasing a bail-jumper, he prefers to keep his head down and follow the leads. He doesn’t like the “chatter” that usually accompanies working with a woman.

However, partnering with Jamie has taught him a few things. There are women who can focus on the job at hand without letting silly distractions get in the way of his concentration. Jamie is one of those rare creatures who doesn’t gossip, doesn’t get into his business, and can actually be useful when shit goes sideways and they have to get physical. Over the months since their boss, Fetch Winter, put them together, Reaper has come to admire the woman’s grit and ingenuity.

And then Jamie up and gets busy planning her wedding…

See what happens when Reaper has to deal with a ride-along author, Carly Wyatt, who—when shit goes sideways—proves his first female partner’s grit and ingenuity aren’t just lucky happenstance, and who challenges Reaper’s strict relationship rules.

Get your copy here!

 

Read an Excerpt!

As a general rule, Reaper Stenberg didn’t like working with a partner, especially female partners. When chasing a target, he preferred to keep his head down and follow the leads. He didn’t like the “chatter” that usually accompanied being paired with a woman.

However, partnering with Jamie Burke had taught him a few things. Women existed who could focus on the job at hand without letting silly distractions get in the way of his concentration. Jamie was one of those rare creatures who didn’t gossip, didn’t mess in his business, and could actually be useful when shit went sideways and they had to get physical. Her methods for subduing a target weren’t ones he’d ever employ, but she knew how to compensate for her smaller frame and lesser strength. Over the months since their boss, Fetch Winter, had put them together, Reaper came to admire the woman’s grit and ingenuity.

Case in point was their present predicament.

No, this time she hadn’t tripped bail jumper, Mark Rebos, with a Jackie Chan move, and no, she hadn’t gripped his balls and twisted so hard he begged for mercy. This time—while she’d run all out—she locked a cuff on her right wrist, jumped onto his back, and snagged his right with the other cuff. Now, they faced each other, squinting in the rain and ankle-deep in mud, and Rebos couldn’t swing without dragging her closer.

The big man looked ready to explode. His pockmarked face was red, and his eyes bugged. Although Rebos was six inches taller than Jamie, and outweighed her by about eighty pounds, Reaper’s money was in Jamie. Continue reading

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