Click the photo to read an excerpt.
I didn’t pick up my first romance novel until I was in my late twenties. Immediately hooked, I read a bazillion books before deciding to write one of my own. After the birth of my first son I needed something to keep my mind from turning to mush, and Sesame Street wasn’t cutting it. While that first book will never see the light of day, something good had come from writing it. I realized my passion, and had found a career that I love.
When I’m not writing contemporary romances and dark, romantic suspense novels (or reading them!) I’m chasing after my four kids and two neurotic dogs.
What happens when negligent plastic surgeons receive a taste of their own medicine…?
Chicago investigative reporter, Eden Risk, receives an unmarked envelope containing a postcard ordering her to watch the enclosed DVD…or someone else dies. No Police. After Eden watches the DVD, a gruesome, horrifying surgery, she turns to the private criminal investigation agency, CORE, for help. Only she hadn’t expected that help to come with a catch. Her former lover, Hudson Patterson, has been assigned to the case.
Hudson would rather have another CORE agent handle the investigation. Two years ago, he’d screwed things up with Eden…bad. And as more DVDs arrive, Eden and Hudson find themselves not only knee-deep in a twisted investigation, but forced to deal with their past, and the love they’d tried to deny.
Eden flinched and when she finally met his gaze, Hudson moved closer, fighting the urge to reach for her and smooth away the worry creasing her forehead, to hold her and assure her he’d never let anything happen to her. He fisted his hands instead. The wariness in her eyes, the rigidness of her body told him what he needed to know. She wasn’t ready for what he was willing to offer. Not just sex, but comfort, familiarity, and maybe this time around more of himself.
“I’m not trying to scare you. I want you to be realistic. I want you safe.”
Gripping the edge of the kitchen counter, reminding him he’d unintentionally crowded her, she leaned back. “I appreciate your concern. But I’ll be well protected tonight. All night.”
Unconvinced he said, “The security system is good, I’ve seen to it myself, but having me here—just in case—is an even better security measure.”
“Sorry, but three’s a crowd. I doubt my date will appreciate my babysitter hanging around while we’re…dating.”
She had a frickin’ date?
“Cancel,” he said, hoping he’d kept the resentment from his voice. Of course he shouldn’t have expected her to remain celibate since they’d broken up. He’d had his share of “dates” too. But knowing another man would be here, in her townhouse, in her bed, had his empty stomach churning with jealousy. The way his emotions were hitting him like a barrage of bullets today, he realized he’d never gotten over the loss of what could have been between them.
No other woman before or after Eden had stirred his gut with thoughts of love and all that other stuff he didn’t have the vocabulary to name.
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I’d like to welcome guest blogger Cindy Carroll to my blog today. Cindy is a member of Sisters in Crime and a graduate of Hal Croasmun’s screenwriting ProSeries. Her interviews with writers of CSI and Flashpoint appeared in The Rewrit, the Scriptscene newsletter, the screenwriting Chapter of RWA. She writes screenplays, thrillers, and paranormals, occasionally exploring an erotic twist. A background in banking and IT doesn’t allow much in the way of excitement so she turns to writing stories that are a little dark and usually have a dead body. She lives in Ontario, Canada with her fiancé and three cats. When she’s not writing you can usually find her painting landscapes in oil or trying space paintings with spray paint.
Thank you so much, Melanie, for letting me be here today!
When I lived in Etobicoke, back when it was still called that and not part of the GTA (Greater Toronto Area) I knew almost all of my neighbours. We’d lived there for over twenty years. I played with the kids. Parents would talk to each other. Some would even come over for dinner. If someone had asked if any of the neighbours could hurt anyone I would have said emphatically, no.
But though I knew them, did I really know them? You hear stories all the time about serial killers and their neighbours. “He was such a nice man,” the neighbours would say. I don’t think I’ve heard anyone yet say “Oh, yeah, I knew the moment I saw him that he was a serial killer.” Killers don’t “look” like killers. What does a killer look like anyway? Ted Bundy was a handsome young man. A lawyer. Would anyone have suspected him of being a serial killer?
So how well do you really know someone? Can you really know them? Do you know for sure that your neighbours aren’t hiding something dark and dangerous? People let you see only what they want you to see. This fascinated me so I wrote a story about a curse that replaces people with that part of themselves that they never let out.
When a cursed inn replaces her friends with evil reflections a woman fights to get the genuine articles back before the doubles kill her.
A road trip goes wrong for a group of friends trying to help one of them get over a break up. They find an inn where the mirrors are cursed. They realize they don’t know each other as well as they thought they did.
I’m so excited to announce my newest release titled A Promise Worth Remembering (Promises Collection, #2) is offered FREE today on Amazon Kindle. Inside the novella, you’ll find magic, forbidden love, tiger rescue, and an escalating family feud on the path to happily-ever-after…
After ten years, tiger preserve owner Bailey Yant never thought heartbreaker Tucker Pierce would return to Safe Haven. With a hundred-year-old feud between the Pierce and Yant families escalating, and despite a mystical lovers’ rock stirring memories of their forbidden love, she’s walled up her heart tighter than her sanctuary. When her prized tiger trespasses onto the Pierce’s hunting range, and poachers threaten not only her tiger’s safety but the livelihood of her preserve, will Bailey open her heart and trust Tucker in time to save her endangered Bengals?
At seventeen, Tucker Pierce fell in love with Bailey’s strength the day he’d pulled her from the river and promised to make her dreams come true. However, to keep Bailey safe from his abusive father, he risked everything—and in the process lost her to another man. For ten years, he’s kept his reason for leaving Safe Haven secret, but he can’t forget the promise he made to her or who his heart belongs to. After finding the widowed Bailey standing on their special rock, will he finally convince her to trust he’s a man of his word?
About the author:
Cyndi Faria is an engineer turned romance writer whose craving for structure is satisfied by plotting emotional and cozy paranormal romance stories about cursed spirits, lost souls, harbingers, and even a haunted coastal town. If you love a tale with courageous heroes and heroines, where their unconditional love for each other gives them strength to defeat their inner demons, Cyndi Faria invites you to enter the pages of her stories and find happily-ever-after.
On and off her sexy romance pages, this California country girl isn’t afraid to dirty her hands fighting for the underdog and caretaking rescued pets. A portion of the earnings from this eBook will be donated to help tigers at PAWS—a sanctuary located in San Andres, California. To learn more, donate, or adopt a tiger visit PAWS online. Find Cyndi helping fellow writers and leading readers to happily-ever-after at http://www.cyndifaria.com
“Cyndi Faria writes with passion and her stories touch the heart.”
—Virna DePaul, Bestselling Author
No. Can’t be. He’s an illusion. Like the wind whispering your name.
Several times, Bailey blinked but pinching her eyes didn’t erase the image of a mature Tucker, one who’d transformed from a whip to a mighty Oak, and a man who greatly resembled a younger version of Old Man Pierce.
Tucker held his head high and his wide stance boasted an assuredness, a grounding presence, that hadn’t graced the adolescent who’d seated his roots in her soul.
Suddenly, her tomboy legs morphed to tree-limbs. She swayed with the gentle wind that transformed her strength, ability, and self-sufficient nature into that helpless girl Tucker rescued from the shadowy waters. Without denial, her body registered her first love even if he’d also been the same person who’d kept her cemented in her inescapable past.
She threw back her shoulders, making her five-foot-four height appear five-foot-six. She didn’t need anyone but herself to make her happy. Nothing stood in her way of dating again and finding happiness. Of fulfilling her dreams with someone other than the man who’d betrayed her trust.
“…your tiger,” he called over the river’s purr.
Her chin quivered at his baritone yet business-like manner and she bit her lip. What had she expected? Words of apology and love? Tucker had moved on a decade ago, no matter how badly her ears still craved his endearments wafting warms puffs of air against her neck. By now, he probably had a family of his own… She glanced at her clothes stuffed in her backpack and, although he’d seen her in her bikini, much less than she wore now, she held her ground. How many times had he stood beside the river and watched her from afar? Once, twice?
As many times as she’d wished he’d gazed upon her with eyes that bore into her tough exterior and tempted her heart, her trust, her words of forgiveness, so she could leave her imprisoned past?
His gaze found hers and held.
Corkscrewed into her heart until her chest hurt. Smoothing her chin with her palm to quiet the quivers spidering across her face, she raised her brows and expected him to say more.
But he only stared.
I hope you enjoyed the excerpt. Want to discover how Bailey and Tucker conquer the obstacles standing in the way of their happy ending? Download for FREE now by clicking the title here: A Promise Worth Remembering
Have you ever faced an obstacle standing between you and the one you love?
Leave a comment and your contact information and you’ll be entered into a raffle to win the necklace inspired by the story (see photo at http://www.cyndifaria.com). I can’t wait to see who the lucky winner of the beautiful pendant will be…
Thank you Melanie for hosting me today!
Wishing you all much love and happiness,
The sixth book in my Keller County Cops series, Trained to Kill, is out… and I’m so excited. I just finished writing the seventh and final book, Code of Vengeance, so I have one more to go in this series. COV will come out this fall.
Blurb for Trained to Kill:
Keller County precision marksman Cadence Holly, a member of the Sheriff’s Emergency Response Team, believes she doesn’t have anything to prove to her new unit because her she’s good at what she does. Detective Brody Remington, a former military sniper, along with the rest of their unit, disagrees. Brody spends most of his time berating Cadence, until she proves him wrong by taking a shot he can’t make.
Brody regrets the way he’s treated Cadence. As he struggles to get back into her good graces, Eugene Dunham, a man seeking revenge for his brother’s arrest and subsequent murder, targets Brody. Once Dunham realizes Brody and Cadence have formed a bond, he sets his sights on Cadence, setting up a frightening game of cat and mouse that can end only one way. Will Brody get to her in time?
“Well, turn me over and paint me blue. I know we’re short on qualified shooters, but the sheriff’s really scraping the bottom of the barrel if he sent you to sniper school.”
“Excuse me? What did you just say?” Cadence spun to glower at Brody Remington, a veteran of the Sheriff’s Emergency Response Team — better known as SERT — who’d made detective less than a month before. He was right about the department. Budget cuts had prevented the sheriff from sending more than two or three applicants to the state training academy for specialized training, but who was he to pass judgment on her just because she was new? Seven days immersed in shooting and tactics might not seem like much, but she’d finished at the top of her class, and she had shot competitively for years before that.
He shrugged. “You heard me.”
“Maybe I did.” She crossed her arms. “Except I’d hoped I was imagining things.”
“‘Fraid not.” His expression darkened. “A girl on the Emergency Response Team? Give me a break. We need somebody who can do the job, not some chick we have to babysit.”
“Wipe that thought right out of your brain, you jerk. I might not have any on-the-job experience yet, but I can shoot. Just watch me.”
“That one-week class Blaylock sent you to is worthless. I have military experience.”
“Big freaking deal. I’m just as qualified as you are to be in this unit.” Wishing she could slice him in two, she narrowed her eyes. “You might be the youngest cop in Keller County to ever make detective, and you might have a military background — hell, you might even be able to walk on water — but that doesn’t make you special.”
“Last time I looked, you were still riding a beat.”
“So what? I do my job.” She fired him a heated glower and clenched her fists. “And with SERT, rank doesn’t matter. Detectives, patrol — we’re all the same. You know that. We just have to be able to perform at a moment’s notice, in addition to our regular duties. So far, so good.”
“Yeah? You’ve been a member of our team for what? Two weeks?” Disdain radiated from his ice blue eyes. “We’ve had one callout — a hostage situation the bomb squad solved without our help.”
“True, but trust me… I can do whatever the captain needs me to do. Maybe better than you.” Sick of defending herself, she backed down. Explanations never worked with Neanderthals like him. She’d run into enough of them in her short career to know that, so why’d she even bother to try? She shot him a disgusted look. “Guess you’ll just have to wait and see, won’t you?”
“Probably won’t have to wait too long to see you screw up.”
“Get out of my face, Brody Remington.” Barely resisting the urge to slap him, she turned on her heel and stalked away. Her whole body vibrated with anger. Why had he judged her before giving her a chance to prove herself? Was that fair? Hell, no.
Cadence turned the corner and ran smack into Captain Pellerin. Their shoulders collided, and only a swift sidestep kept her from cracking her forehead against his square chin.
She emitted a surprised gasp.
“Whoa.” He caught her arm. “Where’s the fire, Holley?”
“Nowhere, Captain.” She did her best to shuck the cloak of fury that had enveloped her while she’d talked to Brody. Wouldn’t do to come off as belligerent in front of her new SERT unit leader. “Just eager to get in some practice before I go home. I’m heading to the range.”
“You’re working too hard, young lady.” He dropped his hand and frowned. “No need to prove yourself to me. I know you can do your job.”
“Well, apparently you’re the only one.” She forced a smile she didn’t feel. “Don’t worry, sir. I won’t be long. I feel an order of Chinese food calling my name.”
Pellerin chuckled. “Sounds like a good meal for a Friday night. Take it easy, Deputy.”
“Will do, sir.” She gave him a little salute, and then turned and hurried down the hallway to the locker room next to the department’s indoor firing range. She kept her equipment there but used the bathroom across the hall whenever she needed to change. That didn’t happen often, but she still resented the sex discrimination that ran rampant in Keller County.
Alex Bryson is patrolling Rocky Mountain backcountry in his job as a security guard when he discovers a woman with a baby wandering alone in the snow far from the nearest road. He takes them to shelter in a weekender cabin and sees a newscast that suggests the woman, Pia Ulmer, kidnapped the baby from its rightful parents and that it is the sole heir of Peru’s wealthiest and most corrupt family. Pia claims that she is the baby’s mother, and Alex doesn’t know what to believe. After turning her in, he continues to struggle with his budding feelings for her and remains unsure of the true story. He becomes more and more involved until finally there is no turning back—lives are on the line. He helps Pia get free from a brutal world that values money over life, and together they devise a plan to reclaim the baby. Just when it looks like they might succeed, they discover an international conspiracy that changes the game entirely.
“Please,” she said, her voice as rough as sandpaper and barely above a whisper. “Please, do not give my baby to those people.”
“Are we back to that? First you’re his mother, then you’re his nanny. Now you’re his mother again?”
“They took him from me. Look at him, Alex. Both Mr. Koenig and his wife are blondes.”
“Koenig’s an old man. His hair’s white.”
“Study Frederick’s face. Do you not see me in his eyes? His chin and his mouth?”
The similarities were uncanny, he’d grant her that. Good enough to get away with claiming to be the kid’s mother if Alex hadn’t learned the truth. The way she had attacked him, trying to kill him with that skillet, she clearly didn’t want to go back to civilization and prove who she was. He turned away, tossed Frederick in a maneuver that brought a cry of delight, and stuffed the boy’s blanket-clad feet through the leg holes in the backpack. With his parka snapped around both of them and the diaper bag tied to his waist, he gripped his rifle in one hand, his snowshoes in the other, and headed for the porch. At the door, he turned for a final glance at Pia.
She had set her mouth in a stubborn line. The eye that had been plastered shut was closed. She stared at him with the other. When she saw him looking at her, she spoke again. “Watch over him, Alex. Someone wants to harm him. Don’t let them.”
A new tack, another lie. He stepped onto the porch and strapped on his snowshoes. That should have been the last he saw of her, but the specter of her ravaged face and defiant expression stayed with him as he trudged across the sunlit expanse of glistening snow that sloped gradually toward the Warrior River Gorge.
Working with traveling carnivals and itinerant farm labor gangs during his teen and early adult years took Gaylon Greer up, down, and across the U.S. and introduced him to a plethora of colorful individuals who serve as models for his fictional characters. After several years as an Air Force officer and then a university professor with a Ph.D. in economics, Greer developed an interest in writing fiction and attended workshops at the University of Iowa, the University of Nebraska, and Bryn-Mawr College. He also studied with the U.C. Davis Extension program and the Algonquian Writers Group. His most recent novel, THE DESCENT FROM TRUTH is available at http://www.Amazon.com and other e-book retailers. Please visit Greer at http://www.GaylonGreer.com
My full length romantic thriller, BLOOD BOUND, is out today at Desert Breeze Publishing. This is the first book in a trilogy set in The Big Easy. I had a blast writing these books, and I’m just a little bit in love with Sam, the hero of this one. You can read more about this book below and on the DBP website and Amazon. It’s also up at B & N and other online outlets. And be sure to check out my app up at iTunes and in the Android market.
Fueled by grief after his fiancée is brutally murdered, Detective Sam Walker focuses on finding her killer — a calculating predator who binds books with human skin. Dani Barrington, the newest member of NOPD’s Victim and Witness Assistance Unit and a survivor of another frightening attack, helps him discover the terrifying link between the monster’s known victims. Despite his anguish, Sam is struck by Dani’s strength and determination, especially when her inquisitive nature makes her the killer’s next target. He must find a way to protect her or risk losing the one woman who can bring his dead heart back to life.
Kristen was gone.
She wasn’t at work. She wasn’t at home. She hadn’t gone out to run an errand. She had simply… vanished.
New Orleans Detective Sam Walker stood in the center of his fiancée’s cluttered bedroom and struggled to piece together the timeline of her disappearance. Last night they were supposed to meet for dinner, but he’d caught a case. They’d talked on the phone around eleven, and he’d asked her to meet him for lunch today.
He hadn’t spoken to her since.
She was supposed to arrive at the Victim and Witness Assistance Unit for work at nine a.m., but never made it. One of her co-workers had called him about ten o’clock. He’d tried Kristen again, but she hadn’t answered.
So he’d come here and found her car in the driveway.
Yet she sure as hell wasn’t here.
Her bed was meticulously made, the way she left it every morning, dumping him out if he’d stayed over. A damp towel lay beside the bathroom sink. Soulful jazz drifted from the iPod dock on her nightstand. What terrified him most, though, was the spot of blood marring the door frame and the lone pink sandal lying in the living room floor beside her purse, keys, and cell phone.
His heart lurched. He couldn’t breathe, couldn’t think. Simply could not absorb that she was missing. They’d been engaged for five months and three days, with only a month to go until the wedding. They should be mulling over the guest list, squabbling about where to go for their honeymoon, and deciding where they wanted to live.
Instead, Sam stared at an empty bed.
“There’s no sign of forced entry, so she either let the guy in or he jumped her when she went after the paper this morning.” Major Sabbatini’s voice seemedto come from far away. “I’m thinking she fought him off and ran, and he caught her here in the bedroom.”
“She would have clawed him.” Hell, she would’ve drawn blood with those nails. Sam should know. He had the marks on his back to prove it. Moisture blurred his vision as he eyed the smudge on the door jamb. “She… she just had her nails done a couple of days ago. They’re like talons.”
“We’ll check the blood for DNA. You know that. What were her plans for today?”
“Um… just work, far as I know. She and I were supposed to have lunch.” Sam shook his head. “Then tonight, she was going to a wedding shower. I just–”
“When was the last time you spoke with her?”
“Late — last night.”