Wren opened the door to reveal a massive Husky with the most piercing blue eyes standing guard in front of her. The dog’s gaze went from Lawson to me and back again.
Wren’s head jerked in my direction. “What are you doing here?”
Lawson winced. “Sorry. He overheard the call. There was no stopping him.”
My eyes traced the trails that tears had left on Wren’s cheeks. Some ended on her chin, while others streaked down her neck. Marks that I had put there.
“I just wanted to make sure you were okay.”
Wren stared at me for the count of three. “I’m fine. Really.”
Lawson cleared his throat. “Can you show me where you found the shoe print?”
She nodded, motioning around the house. “I was in the hall with Shadow. I had just hung up with Grae and heard what I thought was a twig snap. Shadow growled, which she doesn’t usually do unless she’s warning me that she heard something.”
“Did you hear anything other than the twig snapping? Voices? Footsteps?” Lawson asked.
Wren shook her head. “Nothing…”
Her voice trailed off in a way that had me picking up my pace. “What is it?”
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About Catherine Cowles
Writer of words. Drinker of Diet Cokes. Lover of all things cute and furry, especially her dog. Catherine has had her nose in a book since the time she could read and finally decided to write down some of her own stories. When she's not writing she can be found exploring her home state of Oregon, listening to true crime podcasts, or searching for her next book boyfriend.
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THE ALPHA'S GAMBLE
Mismatched Mates #10 by Eliot Grayson
Release Date: January 26, 2023
Cover Design: Fiona Jayde Media
Genre: M/M Paranormal Fantasy Romance
Trope: Enemies to lovers, werewolves, family saga
Cut off from his family—and more importantly, the family fortune—Blake Castelli stakes his future on one last throw of the dice: he’ll go to Las Vegas and use his line of credit at the Morrigan casino to replenish his bank account.
But the Morrigan’s under new ownership. And while Blake doesn’t remember handsome, arrogant Declan MacKenna from their ill-fated encounter ten years ago, Declan remembers him. And he wants payback.
Declan offers Blake a humiliating, degrading deal he has no choice but to take even though it's all kinds of wrong. While Blake may be an alpha werewolf, so is Declan—and he out-alphas Blake at every turn. Blake shouldn’t enjoy what Declan does to him. He shouldn’t crave things no alpha should ever accept. Declan’s turned him into someone he doesn’t recognize: helpless, needy, and out of control.
Declan wants to keep hating Blake, but he can't. Blake wants to trust Declan, but that’s impossible. When magical and mundane attacks threaten them both, Blake has nowhere to turn. Will Declan realize his feelings run deeper than desire in time to save them both? If not, they could lose everything…even their lives.
The Alpha’s Gamble is part of the Mismatched Mates series, but it can be read as a standalone. Contains blackmail, knotting, and intrigue, plus a side dish of biting. This series does not contain mpreg.
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About the Author
I’m an editor by day and a romance writer by night, at least on a good day. I’m more of a procrastinator by day and despairing eater of chocolate by night when inspiration doesn’t flow and my day-job clients are driving me to insanity. Go ahead and guess which of these is more common.
My steady childhood diet of pulp science fiction, classic tales of adventure, and romance novels surreptitiously borrowed from my grandmother eventually led me to writing; I picked up my first M/M romance a few years ago and I’ve been enjoying the genre as a reader and an author ever since.
Connect with Eliot
Facebook Author Page: https://bit.ly/3Qgls2t
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Series: Manchester Chapter
Untamed Sons MC #4
Author: Jessica Ames
Genre: Dark MC Romance
Release Date: January 27, 2023
As the money man of the Manchester chapter of the Untamed Sons Motorcycle Club, my job is simple: make the illegal income legal and don’t get caught. I have a good life in the Sons, an easy one. I don’t have time for women or drama. But when my former cellmate calls and tells me his daughter is in trouble, I have no choice but to respond.
My father is a pathological liar, so when he tells me I’m in danger, I don’t believe him. Until a burly biker turns up on my doorstep. It’s been years since I last saw Brewer, but those feelings I had for him are still there. That doesn’t mean I have to do what he says.
But Brewer isn’t the same man I knew and no isn’t a word he’s used to hearing. When my father’s enemies come for me, he is the only one who can protect me, but who is going to save me from him?
Contains dark and distressing themes. Trigger warnings can be found here: https://www.jessicaamesauthor.com/jessicaamestwcw
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Jessica Ames lives in a small market town in the Midlands, England. She lives with her dog and when she’s not writing, she’s playing with crochet hooks.
"Make A Wish will curl your toes, tickle your funny bone, and leave you with the best warm and fuzzy feelings."–Kylie Scott, New York Times bestselling author
Make A Wish, an all-new second chance, single dad contemporary romance from New York Times bestselling author Helena Hunting, is now available!
With her signature charm and sense of humor, bestselling author Helena Hunting creates a novel about love, family, and second chances in Make a Wish.
Ever have a defining life moment you wish you could do over? Harley Spark has one. The time she almost kissed the widowed father of the toddler she nannied for. It was so bad they moved across the state and she never saw them again.
Fast forward seven years and she’s totally over it. At least she thinks she is. Until Gavin Rhodes and his adorable now nine-year-old daughter, Peyton, reappear at a princess-themed birthday party hosted by Spark House, Harley’s family’s event hotel. Despite trying to avoid the awkwardness of the situation, she can’t help but notice how unbearably sexy he looks in a tutu. Add to that a spontaneous hives breakout, and it’s clear she’s not even remotely over the mortification of her egregious error all those years ago.
Except Gavin seems oblivious to her inner turmoil. So much so that he suggests they get together for lunch. For Peyton’s sake, of course. It’s the perfect opportunity to heal old wounds. Or it could just reopen them. This is one of those times Harley wishes she could see the future…
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Audio: Narrated by Jason Clarke and Stella Bloom
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Keep reading for a look inside MAKE A WISH!
“Do you know where Gavin is taking you for dinner?”
“Nope, he just said wear something nice,” I reply.
“Did you pick up some sexy lingerie to wear under your dress?”
“I guess it depends on whose version of sexy we’re talking about.”
Avery’s version of sexy lingerie is upgrading from a sports bra to one with padding and black bikini briefs. London, on the other hand loves,[HH1] all things lace and satin and delicate. I’m somewhere between the two.
London stops messing with my eyebrows and gives me a stern look. “Please tell me you bought new underwear for this date.”
“Who says he’s going to see my underwear at the end of the night?” I challenge.
“Oh please.” London props a fist on her hip. “Isn’t Peyton sleeping over at her grandparents’ place?”
“As far as I know, yes.”
“So he’ll be able to come back to your place and stay the night if he wants,” London says.
“Do you think I should invite him back to my place?” I glance between my sisters.
“Why wouldn’t you?” Avery rubs her belly.
“It’s our first date.”
Now it’s Avery’s turn to give me a look. “You’ve been seeing him on a weekly basis since July. It’s October[CD2] [HH3] .”
“Because of Peyton.”
“Uh, we all know that’s bullshit.” Avery makes a circle motion and points at me.
“I was in a relationship for most of the time I was spending with them,” I argue.
Avery rolls her eyes. “Chad was a nice guy, but he was a fun-for-now boyfriend, not a get-serious boyfriend. And he was way too into fantasy sports. No one should be in that many fantasy leagues. It’s not normal, and that’s coming from a self-professed sports junkie.”
“Still, don’t you think I should wait a while before jumping into bed with Gavin?” I bring my fingers to my lips then drop them to my lap so I don’t ruin my gloss or my nails.
“It’s whatever feels right,” London says. “And you want to make sure that you’re actually into Gavin on his own, rather than the Gavin-and-Peyton package.”
“How is she going to figure that out unless she gets naked with him?” Avery argues.
“Sex complicates things. You know that better than anyone,” London says pointedly. She’s referencing the way Avery and Declan nearly imploded back when they crossed the line from best friends to best friends with a lot of benefits.
“My situation with Declan is not even remotely the same as what’s going on with Harley and Gavin. Declan had major commitment issues, and I made a stupid mistake. Now we’re super happy and totally in love and having a baby.” Avery turns back to me. “I think you need to do whatever is right for you. It’s up to you whether you let him see your underpants.”
London sighs and shakes her head, then her eyes go wide, and she takes me by the shoulders. “Please tell me your underwear are not cotton.”
“There’s nothing wrong with cotton underwear. They breathe,” Avery says defensively.
“There’s nothing wrong with them in the general sense, but for a date and potentially the first underpants sighting, cotton is a no-no.”
“They’re not cotton,” I assure her.
She arches a brow and I sigh.
“They’re satin with a lace waistband and a floral print.”
“Okay. As long as they don’t have a cartoon pattern on them, we’re good,” London says with relief.
My phone buzzes on the vanity, Gavin’s name flashing across the screen. I nab the device and check the message. He’s just pulled into Spark House. “He’s here. I’m so nervous. Why am I so nervous?”
“Because you want to get naked with him,” Avery says.
“Because you like him, and you’re changing the dynamic of your relationship,” London says.
“And you want to find out if he’s got the moves between the sheets.” Avery grins. She gives me a fist bump. “Just remember, you don’t need to wait five dates before you get in the sack with this one.”
“But don’t feel like you need to rush into anything either.” London turns me around once to make sure my dress isn’t wonky in the back, and then they’re ushering me into the hall.
About Helena Hunting
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Helena Hunting lives outside of Toronto with her amazing family and her two awesome cats, who think the best place to sleep is her keyboard. Helena writes everything from emotional contemporary romance to romantic comedies that will have you laughing until you cry.
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Letting Go at 40 by L.B. Dunbar is now live!