Monday, June 1, 2009
Hearts Afire released today!!
Available Now from Liquid Silver Books!
The Fireman and the Ice Queen by Dee S. Knight:
Harm Reynolds hasn’t asked to be the liaison between the firefighters’ union and the city, he’s been thrust into the role. Even worse, his opponent in the negotiations is the new assistant mayor, the reputed Ice Queen, a heartless ball buster who doesn’t care if his men charge into fiery buildings with equipment that doesn’t work. He strides to his first meeting resolved to prove that a fireman can handle an Ice Queen.
Beth Edwards knows of her reputation as a heartless bitch, and in truth, she even uses it to her advantage at times. She isn’t without compassion, she just doesn’t handle emotion well. And since she has only career plans in mind and no time for love, well, what does a nasty nickname matter?
Both Beth and Harm should have known that playing with fire—whether it involves matches or love—is a dangerous thing to do.
Here's a short excerpt from The Fireman and the Ice Queen. "Sally" is Harm's late wife, dead for 18 months.
In this scene, Beth, the Ice Queen assistant mayor, is meeting with Harm, the firefighters' union rep, to negotiate a new contract. This is their second meeting, one they've both dreaded and longed for.
Beth cleared her throat. “Harm, I’m sorry you came all the way over here. I called the station but you weren’t there.”
“No, I left from the house. I’m not on duty today.”
“Oh. Well, I called to tell you I’m waiting for news from a city in South Carolina regarding their radio system. I’d like to gather as much information as possible before we meet again.”
Harm saw the sense in what she said, but sharp disappointment struck in learning they wouldn’t be sitting across the table from each other that afternoon. “You’re aware the contract is up in three days?”
“I know we’re cutting things short, but I hate to make decisions without knowing all I can, don’t you?” She winked and smiled. “I find whenever I do, deals tend to go up in smoke. No pun intended.”
He chuckled. “Okay, I bow to your fact finding. I’m on duty tomorrow morning for the next 24 hours, but I can make arrangements for whenever you want to get together again.”
“Well,” she said, not meeting his gaze, “would you object to a, uh, dinner meeting? I should receive my phone call by noon, but I’m tied up with the Chamber of Commerce for the rest of the day.”
If Sally had filled his mind, Harm would have been ashamed at the thrill he felt with Beth’s suggestion. So he pushed Sally out of mind and tried to ignore the shame he felt at that.
“Sure. I mean heck, it’s important to get through these talks, and we have to eat, right?” What a damn fool thing to say. She must think you’re an idiot, but at least she doesn’t know you’re a horny idiot. “Where did you have in mind?”
“Um...I actually had in mind, my place. I mean, it’s just that, well, it would be private.” Now she did look up, blushing and eyes wide. “To talk about the contract, I mean.”
Harm could hardly breathe. “Right. It would be bad for any details to leak before we’ve hammered out everything we need to.” God, had he just said he wanted to hammer everything out? What he felt like hammering shouldn’t even be thought in mixed company.
Then she let out a breath. “Oh, yes. I just don’t want you to think, well, that I want to be alone with you.”
He laughed, a burst of surprise and humor unleashed. “God forbid.”
Her cheeks turned a deeper rose. “I mean I do want to be alone with you.”
“That’s nice to hear,” he said, and meant it.
“For the sake of the city,” she replied, her voice low.
“And the firefighters,” he said just as low and a little husky.
“Right. Can’t forget them. I’d never do that.”
“I know you wouldn’t.” He took a step forward, crowding her against the door. “You live on Smithville Road, don’t you?”
“How did you know that?”
Actually, he’d looked her up last night, and even driven past her house, a neat little bungalow with a nice front lawn. “Knowing where city leaders live is one of our jobs.”
Was it his imagination or did she look a bit disappointed?
“I don’t think it would be a good idea to meet there,” she said. “You know how people talk. Your truck in my driveway and the whole town would have us sleeping together in a matter of hours.”
While Harm wanted that to happen--maybe--he didn’t want the town to talk about it. Especially since his wish was far from likely to be granted.
“If talk did start,” she continued, “it would certainly be seen as a conflict of interest, even though neither of us would compromise our principles over sex.”
“No, I’d never let sex compromise my, uh...” Her hair smelled so good. Flowery, but not overpowering.
“Principles,” she prompted.
Inferno by Colleen Love:
Henrietta James is completely satisfied with her polished, metropolitan lifestyle until she accepts an assignment that brings one heroic Cade Lane into her world. Henrietta's research reveals that Mr. Lane is not only the firefighter that saves a child’s life, he's a man with a pin-up calendar worthy body, but more importantly a man that deserves appreciation.
For Cade Lane, being is firefighter is more than just a job - it's who he is. He is also very surprised to find that Henri James is a woman! A very sexy woman who sets his blood burning. He quickly does anything he can to get closer to her and kindles the heat of instant attraction between them, stirring an inferno.
When trouble threatens, putting heart and body in harm's way, can the flames of love be kept burning bright despite the firestorm?
“Then I’ll see you tomorrow, Cade.” Her sultry voice ribboned around his name in a sexy whisper. She leaned close to him, brushing his cheek with a soft kiss. A smile slid over her lips as she turned away from him, walking to her car with quick steps. She glanced at him one last time with dark, wanting eyes as she ducked within.
It was only then he let out a long-held breath. How long he had been holding it he couldn’t say. But one thing was certain, he was glad his jacket was long enough to cover the raging hard-on he was sure was noticeable otherwise. He moved quickly to his truck and started the motor, then let the engine run for a moment as he leaned his head against the headrest, giving him time to think for a moment. What had just happened? He’d been completely blindsided. Henri was everything he hadn’t expected. She was the epitome of his wildest, wettest dreams. And that didn’t happen too often, matter of a fact, with the way he felt right now, it was a first! He released the emergency brake and shifted into reverse, slowly backing from the empty parking lot. After plugging in Kenney Chesney’s newest CD, he relaxed, beginning the long drive home.
The time and distance on the dark, empty highway let his mind wander back over dinner and Henri. A woman named Henri. A smirk played over his lips and quickly dropped when a flashback of her long legs, which brought her nearly to his eye level. Her stilettos brought her even closer. The swish of her silk stockings, knee-length black skirt and white silk blouse screamed that she was a classy woman and out of his league. And yet, she was interested in him. Interested enough to blunder her interview. That made him smile again. The way she had flushed with embarrassment and fidgeted with her long, dark hair when he had turned the tables away from the interview. He could hear the nervous shift of her legs, guessing by the swish of silk against silk and the fabric of her skirt, that she was crossing and uncrossing her legs. The results had titillated his senses with her musky sweet scent. It became all he could do to refrain from asking her if she wanted to find a room somewhere. But that would have been cheap and not her, in his mind anyway. He did refrain and was proud of himself, because after all, a man can only take so much. The suggestion of showing her the place he had rescued the child was a near stroke of genius. Now, he would be able to see her again, but this time it would be more of an effort to restrain himself.