Archive for 'shifter'
Thursday, August 20th, 2020
Ever since I was a kid, I have loved music. I remember having a radio in my room and being amazed at the new songs I heard. I noticed how each song told a story with not only words but rhythm and instruments as well. When I got a tape player, I listened to “Africa” by Toto over and over. It’s still one of my favorite songs. More than anything else ever has, the notes of a song can soothe me when I’m upset. A good, fast-paced song can energize me when I need to get things done. I can turn up the volume and sing when I’m alone, especially when I’m driving down the road. The energy of a crowd at a concert can be inspiring. The connection to everyone around me singing the same song is incredible and beautifully impermanent.
The soothing power of music is an important part of Tiger’s Last Chance. In the story, Sean Whitman had a rough childhood and endured a brutal interrogation that tore apart his life and career, but he survived. In spite of everything he endured, his empathy for others never faltered. But he’s not perfect either. He is a recovering alcoholic and music is his lifeline when things get too intense for him to bear.
The song “Ball and Chain” by Social Distortion is playing in his truck in the first chapter of the story because that song kept popping up in my head as I wrote his character. For Sean, music is the temporary armor that gave him strength and peace while he healed. I think music is a temporary armor for many people. The rhythm and sound give us joy and comfort in the darkest times.
Tiger’s Last Chance
While working a case, Sean Whitman is tortured for information, drugged, and bitten against his will by a shapeshifter. The fallout leaves him jobless, friendless, and dumped by his girlfriend. Needing a fresh start, he leaves town and opens a private investigation business. Learning to live life sober isn’t easy, but he makes it to the two-year mark.
When Detective Nikki Jackson with the Great Oaks, Virginia Police Department calls him, accusing him of breaking into his ex-girlfriend’s house, Sean can’t help but like the sound of her voice, despite her ridiculous accusations. He’s shocked when she calls him back with an apology then asks for his help as a consultant on a case. On the phone, her sweet, slightly Southern voice captivates him. In person, she’s unlike any other woman he’s encountered, and nearly impossible to resist. But could the sexy detective ever want a man like him?
After Nikki’s last dating disaster, the mountain lion shifter has sworn off men. Then she meets Sean, and with every second she spends around the tall, dark-eyed man, her resolve crumbles. But for some reason, despite the undeniable attraction between them, Sean seems determined to push her away.
An investigation into missing refugees leaves Nikki with more questions than answers. Her refusal to let the matter drop leads her to the discovery of a radical political group’s horrifying plot for dominance. Traitors are embedded within the very organizations meant to keep shifters safe. As the list of people she can trust dwindles, Nikki calls on Sean to help her unravel a web of deceit.
As Nikki and Sean fight for survival, his fear of losing her could become a reality. Will he get one last chance to show her he loves her?
Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/b088p6mydb
Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/b088p6mydb
Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/tigers-last-chance-christina-lynn-lambert/1137033221
Excerpt from Tiger’s Last Chance…
For the briefest moment, Nikki felt the depth to which Sean might be capable of pushing her. His kiss was crushing and brutal. His tongue pushed past her lips and his grip in her hair tightened. If desire were a vine, it would have wrapped itself around her veins and encased her heart. The heat between them flooded her. There was a sweetness, too, in his kiss, and the sweetness made her burn hotter.
A polite cough from inside the waiting car put a quick end to things. Sean pulled away and met her gaze. No words, but she got the message. She wasn’t alone. Comfort and friendship; he’d probably meant the kiss to comfort her and had gotten carried away in the heat of the moment. He’d carried her away with him, and she wanted to take him so much further into the unknown.
With each second, each step towards the waiting car, she tried to find reasons and more reasons to ignore her growing attraction to Sean. The number one reason to forget about the kiss they’d shared—relationships were trouble. She had plenty of other amazing things in her life, including her career, her volunteer work, and her band, even though the band rarely played anywhere because the members had trouble aligning their schedules. She didn’t need a man. Besides, he was probably still messed up over Sydney. Also, he was a regular. Or mostly regular. Not to mention he lived over a thousand miles away in Texas. She should tell him the kiss was a mistake. One look at him and she couldn’t bring herself to say the words. The kiss they shared had been anything but a mistake.
Author Social Media Links:
Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/Christina-Lynn-Lambert/e/B01MCYK0K7
Wednesday, June 17th, 2020
UPDATE: The winner is…Charlotte!
Project Runway. Face Off. Skin Wars. Top Chef. Hell’s Kitchen (only while I’m editing). Bar Rescue.
Okay, I could go on, but I won’t. Because this episode of Binge Watch Confessions is about Bar Rescue.
It started at first because, apparently, my muse likes the soothing background music of men screaming. I’m sure there’s a lot for a therapist to unpack there, but that’s for another day.
But I was flipping channels, and there was Jon Taffer yelling at a beleaguered bar owner who is too stuck in his own way to get out of his own way.
That part wasn’t all that interesting, but then he brought in his bar experts. A mixologist for the drinks and a chef for the kitchen. Now, I get my fill of foodie stuff in other places, but the drinks.
Oh, that was interesting. Drink programs tailored to the bar, either by theme or location. Or both. It was fascinating and I ate it up. I watched as they explained why stirring a drink or shaking it made a difference. As they used fresh ingredients and explained the reason it made drinks better. For a person who got a degree in the background tech of theater, it spoke to me.
I like to craft. To make. I guess it’s not all that off base that I became an author. Crafting stories.
Well, in XAVIER, the heroine is True Sinclair, and she is a mixologist hired to craft a drink program for “The Majestic” a bar at a resort that caters to shapeshifters. It’s a resort that is being brought back to its heyday after years of being dormant.
The idea is to create a place where shapeshifters can just “be” and not worry that they have to protect themselves from humans or people who are curious. The entire town is a place where shifters have been open about their lives since its foundation.
So, when I was researching drinks to “transform” into shifter-themed drinks, I was shocked to find out that somehow I’d tied a plot point into a neat little bow. Without realizing it.
My hero, Xavier, is a panther shifter. He crafts his own moonshine for himself and his friends. During my research, I discovered that a slang name for moonshine is PANTHER’S BREATH.
Well, goodness…wasn’t that…odd.
Xavier releases next Tuesday and is on a preorder sale that will continue for a short time after release.
He thought he wanted his freedom and his solitude more than anything else in the world… until he met her.
Xavier Salazar lives the life that he wants. He has his friends and his home carved into Mystic Mountain. It’s his retreat, his refuge. When a gorgeous woman shows up in town to help make the resort’s bar a brilliant success, he’s torn. Xavier is determined to drive her away, but his panther wants to touch her all over, hide her away in their den, and add to the family that he was slowly creating around himself.
Oh, he was going to fight… hard. And yet, even he knew he was probably fighting a losing battle.
True Sinclair is at the top of her profession. Being a world-class mixologist means she knows how to blend all kinds of things together. She just can’t fathom why Xavier treats her like he’s oil and she’s water. There was no doubt that he was combustible around her.
At first, he can’t seem to force himself to be civil or even make an effort to share the same town, but she finds herself drawn to the dichotomy warring inside of him.
True knows what he is and she knows what she wants, but she won’t wait around forever if the man who makes her blind with love and drunk with passion won’t even meet her halfway.
Pre-order your copy here!
I’m happy to offer an ebook copy of Book 1 of the series WINTER.
All you have to do is tell us their favorite mixed drink and why you like it!
Friday, June 12th, 2020
UPDATE: The winners are…gift cards: Colleen C and Mary Preston; and anthology: Debra Guyette and Becky Parsons!
Hi! My name is Megan Ryder, and thank you for having me back on the blog for another chance to talk about my books. Today, I’m thrilled to talk a little bit about making the transition between contemporary and paranormal romance.
I’ve been writing for a long time (longer than I care to admit) and I’ve been writing contemporary romance for most of that time. I’m published with a few books including sexy baseball heroes, a matchmaking bride and her bridesmaids, and lately, cowboys. While I love all of those, my first love has always been paranormal romances, especially shifters, but I was always hesitant to make the shift (pun intended) to a new genre. When I heard about this anthology, my short story popped into my head completely formed as a prequel to my series and the perfect way to test my skills.
My story centers around a female shifter who is trapped into running from a group of alpha males who want to forcibly claim her as a mate, only to run into another alpha who offers to save her. The only problem is – he really IS her mate and she doesn’t want a mate at all.
In paranormal romance, I wanted to deal with the concept of consent, because “fated mates” being a trope in the genre often blurs the lines for consent. In this story, I wanted her to be a strong alpha female and her mate to be willing to see her that way and accept her and look for her consent, even as their natures want them to mate.
It was fun playing with the paranormal world, setting up the shifter structure and society, and dealing with the biology, too. And I slipped in something I thought was relevant to our current times.
Check out the snippet below and let me know what you think.
For my giveaway, let me know if you like the “fated mates” trope, where characters have one and only one mate for them (and often they know it and can’t fight it for long). I’m giving away 2 electronic copies of the anthology – First Response (given on release day) – and 2 $10 gift cards to Amazon.
Excerpt from “Claiming Lyla”
A she-wolf being hunted by pack males during a claiming rite is rescued by a rogue alpha determined to make her his own, despite her desire to be independent…
Lyla folded her arms in front of her, a defensive gesture, closing herself off from him, while plumping up her full breasts so they strained against the lace. “What do you want?”
He cocked his head at the howls growing closer. “You don’t have much time, or much of a choice, sweetheart. You either deal with me or them. And trust me, I’m the lesser of your evils.”
A laugh broke from her throat, a raw, harsh sound that held no humor. “I’d prefer none of you. Why can’t you leave me alone, you bastards? You want me to just roll over and spread my legs like a good little bitch. Well, fuck that.”
He winced at her harsh tone and steeled himself. A breeze picked up her scent and tickled his senses with it, and his cock hardened further, painfully. His wrists burned hotter under the skin, prickling like a thousand fine needles that made him want to scratch an itch. Nothing would appease the sensation, he feared. He cursed under his breath. Fuck. Not the best time to find his mate. Not here. Not in this goddamn situation. This night had just gone to shit, and now the bonds were pulling him in even tighter.
Monday, May 18th, 2020
It’s been a tough couple of months for all of us. We all need an escape, something to help us relax. I’ve been reading a lot—it’s what I do. But it’s also a great time to watch movies, especially older movie series. Maybe you’ve them, maybe you haven’t. Either way, pop some corn, grab some chocolate, and watch them for the first time or enjoy them again.
Lord of the Rings—If you haven’t seen these films, you really need to. I’ve seen them over a half dozen times…probably more. They are amazing feats of cinematic magic. Fantasy, epic battles, good versus evil, unforgettable characters, and a beautiful love story. And let’s not forget Viggo Mortensen as Aragorn.
In order: The Fellowship of the Rings, The Two Towers, The Return of the King.
Underworld—If you’re a fan of the paranormal, you have to see these films. The heroine is kickass. The first three movies are the best. The final two lack the punch of the original two.)
In order: Underworld, Underworld: Evolution, Underworld: Rise of the Lycans, Underworld Awakening, Underworld: Blood Wars.
The Bourne series—You have to love Matt Damon as Jason Bourne. Lots of amazing action.
In order: The Bourne Identity, The Bourne Supremacy, The Bourne Ultimatum, The Bourne Legacy (with Jeremy Renner) and Jason Bourne.
Pirates of the Caribbean—I love Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow. These films are action-packed and filled with so much fun, not to mention a wonderful love story.
In order: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Dead Man’s Chest, At World’s End, On Stranger Tides, and Dead Men Tell No Tales.
Indiana Jones—Harrison Ford makes us all want to be archeologists in these amazing movies. Drama, adventure, good versus evil, and so much fun. (The first three were wonderful, but I didn’t enjoy the last one as much.)
In order: Raiders of the Lost Ark, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.
If these don’t suit, here are a few more you might check out: Star Wars, Rocky, Die Hard, Terminator, Hunger Games, John Wick, and Rambo. And if you’re feeling really ambitious, why not go back to the beginning and watch all the Avengers movies.
What are some of your favorite movie series?
And if you’re looking for something to read, you might want to check out ARCTIC BITE, the second book in my Forgotten Brotherhood series, out now.
Forgotten Brotherhood, Book Two
Being immortal doesn’t mean you can’t die. It just means you’re damn hard to kill.
When Alexei Medvedev joined the Forgotten Brotherhood—paranormals hired to assassinate other paranormals—he knew it wouldn’t be a cake walk. But his next target is one of Death’s own Reapers gone rogue. For the first time since he started this gig, “damn hard to kill” feels more like “damn near impossible.”
Tracking Cassie Dobbs brings him to a remote bar in small-town Alaska, where this hot-as-hell Reaper is casually serving drinks, as if she doesn’t have a bounty on her head from Death himself. Alexei is dangerously intrigued. Everyone in the Brotherhood knows the first rule: don’t fall for your target.
But Alexei soon has bigger problems to face than an unexpected attraction. They only send assassins after those who deserve to die…or so he’s been made to believe. Now that he’s met Cassie, though, he’s not so sure.
What if everything he’s been told is a lie, and the person he’s been sent to kill is the only one who knows the truth?
About the Author
N.J. Walters is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author who has always been a voracious reader, and now she spends her days writing novels of her own. Vampires, werewolves, dragons, time-travelers, seductive handymen, and next-door neighbors with smoldering good looks—all vie for her attention. It’s a tough life, but someone’s got to live it.
Visit me at:
Newsletter Sign Up: http://eepurl.com/gdblg5
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/N.J.WaltersAuthor
Friday, January 31st, 2020
UPDATE: The winner is…Booklady!
…or a better description: Reminders!
Still on Sale!
Enter the Danger Zone! $0.99 Sale! — This price on this super-fun story will only last another week!
- What’s still happenin’ & looking forward to a new week! (Contest) — This contest will end Sunday night! Win an Amazon gift card!
- Mutiny’s Bounty: Puzzle & a Contest — Win an Amazon gift card!
For a chance to win your choice of story from among my Night Fall or Beaux Rêve Coven series (both paranormal with shifters!), solve the puzzle then tell me your favorite flavor of shifter!
Thursday, January 9th, 2020
First, let me say how happy I am to be releasing this novel, Where the Howl Are You?
It was just published as the final book in the Be Careful What You Summon series. The first book, Vampire Vintage, came out a while ago, but the second and third books were long overdue. It was hard to get to my Indies when I had traditional contracts with deadlines, then first, second, and, sometimes, third edits, plus marketing, etc., demanding my time.
Anyway, I rewrote and rereleased Vampire Vintage first. Tiger’s Night Out, book 2, was released a year ago—January 2019. And now, finally, with the release of Where the Howl Are You?, the series is complete!
Pushing forty, Ronda Calhoun did a summoning spell with her single friends to find immortal mates, figuring they might appreciate women with a little more maturity and experience. For all the others, it worked! So why isn’t her immortal showing up?
Private investigator Nate Smith didn’t know what he had back when he and Ronda dated in High School. Now he knows she’s the one he wants to spend his long life with. Arranging to run into her isn’t a problem, but confessing he’s a werewolf could ruin everything!
Get your copy:
But this article is about how readers helped me with all of this…
First of all, book 1, Vampire Vintage, needed a new professional cover. It was previously published by Ellora’s Cave and I had to update it. Amanda Walker did an awesome job, and even made bookmarks to go with it. (Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you want a couple! I’d be happy to send them. 🙂 )
One of my readers loved the first book so much, she became, not only a fan, but a friend. Knowing she was hoping for the other women’s stories to be told spurred me on.
Book 2 needed a cr*pload of editing, beta reading, and proofreading. Half the book took place in India, so certain words and phrases were checked with a West Bengal local. Most importantly I needed encouragement. My beta reader provided that with an enthusiastic, “It’s ready! Publish it!” So I had the cover made by the fabulous Syneca Featherstone of Original Syn and after a professional proofreading, that’s just what I did.
On to book 3. It had been previously published looong ago by another epublisher under a different title. I dusted it off, rewrote it completely and figured the five or ten people who bought the original version probably wouldn’t remember it anyway.
Then I needed a new title. I ran a few past my street team and one of my long-time members came up with a suggestion I hadn’t even thought of! Where the Howl Are You? was the PERFECT title, since our heroine, Ronda, had to wait so long to have her HEA, too.
Part of the fun (at least for me) is getting feedback from readers. A reader taking the time to express their thoughts in a review or word-of-mouth social media post is awesome! I take the good with the bad, and sometimes I’m able to improve a book if it gets a “second time around” publishing opportunity. Like Death by Delilah—a novella from my Ellora’s Cave days. There was a scene that awoke a reader’s “Ick factor.” That sometimes happens with erotica. The novella itself garnered a lot of contest wins and nominations, so when I had the opportunity to rewrite it, I changed that scene. It’s now part of an anthology with two other related novellas called Immortally Yours.
Sometimes, I get that feedback well before reviews. My proofreader Dianne Donovan is fabulous at catching every last pesky typo…and she doesn’t hesitate to give me her honest opinion of the book itself. I’m delighted to tell you she loved this one! However, I just got a “meh” advance review from a reader who didn’t like how the hero never shifted. That was one of the things that tickled me. He was so afraid he’d scare her off, he disappeared rather than let her see him shift. That didn’t mean he didn’t keep an eye on her. Wolves are by nature very protective of their chosen mates. And when she found out what he was, she didn’t get all girly and scared…she was more like; ”Why the hell didn’t you say so?” She had been waiting for her immortal for two years!
So, those are some of the examples right off the top of my head. I can’t tell you how grateful I am for all the support, encouragement, and honesty of my readers. Have you ever wanted to write to an author about their book? What’s stopping you?
Thursday, December 19th, 2019
It’s that time of the year, December 21st to 22nd, when the shortest day and the longest night of the year fall in the Northern Hemisphere. We call that the Winter Solstice. In Welsh they say Alban Arthan (Light of Winter).
To the ancient Celts this day signified the battle and defeat of the Holly King (ruling from Midsummer to Midwinter) by the Oak King (ruling from Midwinter to Midsummer). The Holly King, also seen as a wren bird, symbolized the old year and the shortened sun, while the Oak King, also seen as a robin, stood for the new year and growing sun. The Celts would act out the battle of the Oak King defeating the Holly King during the Winter Solstice celebration.
They also had wren hunts, signifying the death of the Holly King. In Ireland, Wales, and the Isle of Man, Lá an Dreoilín, (Wren Day) was celebrated December 26. Wrenboys dressed in masks or straw suits, usually had a hobby horse covered in a sheet, and it had strings which could close their mouths and make their legs kick. Wren boys were led by a captain and a boy who dressed as a female captain. These boys hunted and killed a wren as tribute to the light for overcoming the dark. They’d set the dead wren in a box decorated with evergreens on a pole and go from house to house asking for food and good cheer. The wren was buried at the end of the rounds. Nowadays, they use a fake wren instead. Both the Holly King and wrens are associated with the Welsh god Bran.
For the Winter Solstice, ancient Celts decorated Yule logs with holly and ivy, which are linked to the God Bran. Usually, they sprinkled ale or mead over the log before they lit it. They kept it slowly, yet steadily burning for 12 days in the fireplace before extinguishing it. To pass the light on from one year to the next, they kept part of the unburned log safely to one side and used it to light next year’s Yule log. Also, they stashed the log’s ashes away until spring, at which time they mixed them with seeds and scattered them on the fields, spreading the blessing contained in the Yule log over the land.
Mistletoe and oak were sacred to the ancient Celts. As an evergreen plant, Mistletoe symbolized continued life over the cold dark winter which is why druids picked it from oak trees five days after the new moon following the Winter Solstice. One druid climbed the tree and cut the mistletoe with a sickle, while others held an open a sheet beneath him to catch the sacred plant since it was taboo to let it touch the ground. The druids handed out sprigs of mistletoe to tribesmen who hung them over entranceways for protection. Mistletoe is also believed to be an aphrodisiac, so this might be where the holiday tradition of ‘kissing under the mistletoe’ originated.
The Celts livelihood depended on what they could raise, grow, or hunt. So, the long, cold days of winter were hard one them. Since they didn’t have enough grain to feed all the cattle during winter, many were slaughtered at this time. This meant fresh meat for the winter solstice feast. Also, ale and mead brewed during the year fermented by this time and were and ready for drinking.
The Bear and the Druidess
My Celtic Winter Solstice novella, The Bear and the Druidess is the third book in my Druidry and the Beast series. It’s available where ebooks are sold. Here’s the blurb:
Sometimes a secret must be revealed to move from the winter of love into its spring.
Romans stole all the winter grain from Druidess Bronwen’s tribe. Now, pursued by Romans, she ducks into a cave to hide. There she finds a handsome warrior who offers to help. He ignites a fiery spark of attraction within her but she can tell he’s keeping something from her.
The prayers of a beautiful druidess he can’t resist lead the Bear God Artaois into the cave where Bronwen is hiding. He pretends to be asleep until she finds him.
Artaois (Art) is determined to spend the longest night of the year with her. But Bronwen doesn’t realize he’s a god. He keeps his secret from her and even though he can transform into a bear, he only reveals himself in human form.
With the Winter Solstice upon them, can Artaois (Art) find a way to save her tribe from starvation? And, when Bronwen finally discovers his secret, will she leave the romance building between them out in the cold.
Get your copy here!