Category Archives: The Calling

Lots of Interesting Tidbits on THE CALLING Vampire Series

#FreeRead For Love and Vengeance from the Sorcery and Steam Bundle

I’m taking part in a great new project — the Sorcery and Steam Story Bundle. This bundle is a collection filled with magic, fantasy, suspense, bad guys, mythic creatures, goddesses and a little bit of romance!

My contribution to the story is For Love or Vengeance, a unique story from The Calling is Reborn Vampire series. Unique because the vampires are not at the forefront of the story. Instead we have a Greek Goddess taking the lead in order to help a host of FBI Agents find the Broadway Butcher, a serial killer who is murdering aspiring young actors and musicians. You’ll get to meet Nemesis, the Greek Goddess of Vengeance who has taken human form as FBI Agent Helene Alexander and her partner, Miguel Sanchez.

For those of you who are familiar with The Calling series, you’ll also get to see some old friends again, like FBI Agent Diana Reyes and her vampire lover Ryder Latimer. You’ll be surprised at what’s up in their lives and I hope you’ll take the time to read the next books in the series which take you on a whirlwind ride filled with romance, suspense, and lots of nasty vampires that need to be staked!

Here’s an excerpt from For Love or Vengeance for you from the Sorcery and Steam Story Bundle.

Excerpt

Prologue
Mount Olympus

The chase was on once again.

Nemesis sensed her father’s growing anger as he sought her out along the halls of Olympus. She had just returned from another mission down on Earth with the humans, her goals twofold. First: to make sure justice was served so that the puny mortals would not fall into chaos and disorder. Second, and possibly more important to her on a personal level: avoiding her father’s rutting ways.

It had been nearly a month since he had taken her, brutally and against her will. Not that it bothered him that he had hurt her, physically and mentally. For that matter, it didn’t seem to bother her mother or any of the other denizens of Olympus, none of whom were bold enough to challenge Zeus.

As Nemesis raced into the furthest wing of the palace nestled amongst the clouds, Zeus’s bellow shook the walls and the ground beneath her bare feet.

To the humans below the sound would seem like thunder, but to the other gods and goddesses lingering about the palace, it instilled fear since they understood such a mood always brought punishment.

Nemesis sped to her room as quickly as she could, wanting to escape back to Earth before Zeus could lay his hands on her once more.

As she opened the door to her chamber, she realized she was too late. Zeus was already there, lying across the center of her bed, his head of golden curls pillowed against his muscled arms. At first glance he seemed the picture of contentment, but when she met his gaze, thunderbolts of fury lit his celestial blue eyes.

“You’ve been ignoring me, daughter,” he said, swinging his legs over the edge of the bed and slowly rising to his towering height. His presence was immense as the force of his energies buffeted her psyche.

She ducked her head, wishing she could disappear into herself. “I’ve been spreading justice as you’ve commanded, Father.”

Zeus laughed and the sound rumbled throughout the palace.

A second later her mother, Hera, flew into the room and came to stand beside her.

“Husband, is something wrong?” her mother asked, the tones of her voice demure since she, too, sensed Zeus’s growing rage.

“Our daughter avoids me. She claims it is because she is on my mission—”

“I am,” Nemesis insisted, raising her head to meet her father’s stormy gaze.

“Silence,” he commanded, and clapped his hands, the noise almost deafening. It shook the clouds beneath their feet and was followed by a bolt of lightning that burst from his palms.

Both she and her mother lowered their heads once more, and with a satisfied huff, Zeus strolled over and circled, inspecting them.
“You say you are on my mission?”

“I am, Father,” Nemesis repeated softly, hating the sense of powerlessness his presence brought.

“Justice must be very important to you,” he said as he tucked his thumb under her chin and urged her head upward.

“It is, Father.”

His gaze bored into her, making her quake with fear that he would come to know the real reason for her determination to be on Earth.

“You enjoy your time with the mortals?” he questioned, arching a brow.

“I spend time with them to do what I must,” she responded, her voice as neutral as she could make it.

“Methinks that is not the only reason, Nemesis.” Obvious displeasure colored his words as he shifted his hand to cradle her jaw and leaned close. “Methinks it is to avoid me, Daughter.”

As if to prove his point, he brought his face near until he nuzzled the skin of her cheek. In low tones, he whispered, “You will not refuse me. I will have you whenever I want.”

Abruptly he pulled away, shooting daggers at her and her mother, who had remained impassive beside her. He paced a step or two before facing them once more. “If keeping the humans in line is so important—”

“It is, Father. It is why—”

“Silence,” he commanded again. “Then you will have no issue with taking a solemn vow to exact justice on Earth.”

With a dip of her head, she answered, “Justice is my sole mission.”

“Our daughter has fulfilled your word admirably, Husband,” Hera said, slipping an arm around Nemesis’s shoulders in a rare sign of support.

Zeus narrowed his eyes as he considered them.

Hera did her best to appear subservient, but she knew he could sense the disobedience hidden beneath her calm surface, as well as her daughter’s. He would brook no such disobedience.

She suspected punishment would not be long in coming.

Leaning close to their daughter, he said, “As part of your vow, you must understand that if you fail, your time on Earth as a goddess will come to an end.”

Nemesis bowed her head. “I understand.”

“No! Wait, Daughter,” Hera cried, but it was too late.

With a blast of lightning, Nemesis was gone from her side, returned to Earth to fulfill the vow she had just made. A vow she had not completely understood in her haste to be away from her father.

“You do not play fair, Husband. She did not comprehend the true terms of her pledge,” Hera chastised, but Zeus only shook his head and laughed, the sound of it like thunder across the sky.

“Fair? All is fair in love and war,” he answered, and with a clap of his hands, disappeared.

Her body trembling with fear and disgust, Hera stumbled to her daughter’s bed and sat. Pressing a hand to the pain in the middle of her chest, she prayed Nemesis could keep her vow.

Justice must be served or else Nemesis would forever be condemned to life as a mortal, with all its inherent dreariness.

But worse, with the promise of death.

A Little More About the Bundle

The initial titles in the Sorcery and Steam Bundle (minimum $5 to purchase) are:

  • Alchemy and Steam by Fiction River
  • Familiarity by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
  • Poison or Protect by Gail Carriger
  • Blood and Magic by Ann Gimpel

If you pay at least the bonus price of just $15, you get all four of the regular titles, plus SIX more!

  • Specters in the Storm by Pauline Baird Jones
  • Rare Stakes by Michelle Fox
  • Valkyrie’s Vengeance & Hunger Moon – Ragnarok: Doom of the Gods 1-2 by Melissa Snark
  • Ghosted – Nikki Ashburne – Book 1 by Dayle A. Dermatis
  • Alys of Asgard by Catherine Banks
  • For Love or Vengeance by Caridad Pineiro

This bundle is available only for a limited time via http://www.storybundle.com. It allows easy reading on computers, smartphones, and tablets as well as Kindle and other ereaders via file transfer, email, and other methods. You get multiple DRM-free formats (.epub, .mobi and .pdf) for all books!

It’s also super easy to give the gift of reading with StoryBundle, thanks to our gift cards – which allow you to send someone a code that they can redeem for any future StoryBundle bundle – and timed delivery, which allows you to control exactly when your recipient will get the gift of StoryBundle.

Why StoryBundle? Here are just a few benefits StoryBundle provides.

  • Get quality reads: We’ve chosen works from excellent authors to bundle together in one convenient package.
  • Pay what you want (minimum $5): You decide how much these fantastic books are worth. If you can only spare a little, that’s fine! You’ll still get access to a batch of exceptional titles.
  • Support authors who support DRM-free books: StoryBundle is a platform for authors to get exposure for their works, both for the titles featured in the bundle and for the rest of their catalog. Supporting authors who let you read their books on any device you want—restriction free—will show everyone there’s nothing wrong with ditching DRM.
  • Give to worthy causes: Bundle buyers have a chance to donate a portion of their proceeds to AbleGamers!
  • Receive extra books: If you beat the bonus price, you’ll get the bonus books!

StoryBundle was created to give a platform for independent authors to showcase their work, and a source of quality titles for thirsty readers. StoryBundle works with authors to create bundles of ebooks that can be purchased by readers at their desired price. Before starting StoryBundle, Founder Jason Chen covered technology and software as an editor for Gizmodo.com and Lifehacker.com.

For more information, visit our website at storybundle.com, tweet us at @storybundle and like us on Facebook.

#Vampire Reborn from The Calling is Reborn #TeaserTuesday

Today’s Teaser Tuesday is a look at VAMPIRE REBORN from THE CALLING IS REBORN Vampire Novel Series. I just love exploring where FBI Agent Diana Reyes and vampire Ryder Latimer are going in their relationship and I hope you’re enjoying it as well. I’ll shortly have DARE TO LOVE, the next installment in the series, up for you and will be working on FIGHT FOR LOVE, the next step in Diana and Ryder’s story, for late 2017.

Here’s a little teaser from VAMPIRE REBORN.

Teaser

Although his vampire blood called on him to rest during the day, Ryder regularly fought that need in his desire to be more human. To share time with Diana the way normal couples did. He had worked at his desk in the morning, checking on his various investments, and now the two of them were in the gym, working out.

Ryder moved through the steps in the kata, Diana beside him, shifting in unison.

A left turn to face forward followed by a low block with the left hand.

A step ahead with a sharp right-handed punch.

A quick whirl and back to the front for another low block.

They glided, pushed forward and back, almost as if in a ballet.

Pivot, forward, punch, and then retreat.

An upper cut followed by a drop of the hands to the hips with another one hundred eighty degree turn and a double high block.

From the corner of his eye, he measured Diana’s movements and strength since he hadn’t been the only one who had almost lost his life weeks earlier.

Not that you could tell from her fluid and powerful movements. There wasn’t a hint of hesitation or fragility to attest to the fact that his wife had not only been on death’s door, but that she’d recently given birth. Well, almost nothing. Her warrior’s body wore its lean muscled strength nicely, but the womanly curves were ever more rounded, especially her breasts.

Her command came in his head through their shared connection. Focus.

The warning made him stumble through the final punch and slide of the kata, but he recovered to end it gracefully.

They faced each other and bowed to acknowledge the completion of the exercise.

With the kata finished, she grinned and rolled her eyes. “Men. Show a little tit and it totally throws you off.”

Reaching out, he playfully squeezed her breast and said, “Nothing little about those.”

She slapped at him and he recognized the invitation in her gaze. “Think you can boss me around?” he asked.

“I know I can, remember?”

Yeah, he remembered all right. She’d beaten him more than once during their workouts, but he’d been training hard and this time, he planned on coming out on top. Literally.

“Prove it,” he challenged and put his hands up in a fighting stance.
She arched a brow and her demeanor grew a tad too serious for his taste. “Are you sure?”

“If you’re meaning to ask if I’m up to it – ”

“Are you?” she asked, but raised her hands and braced her legs slightly apart, ready for battle.

Her words stung more than any punch she could have landed. “Don’t patronize me, darlin’. I’m fit enough to protect you and Charlie.”

Order

The new additions to The Calling is Reborn series are free for Kindle Unlimited members. You can order them here:

For Love or Vengeance: http://amzn.to/2rPw3bk
To Love and Serve: http://amzn.to/2rZrqMV
Born to Love: http://amzn.to/2rwzMuc
Die for Love: http://amzn.to/2sc7vKB
Vampire Reborn: http://amzn.to/2scuZPs
The Calling is Reborn Vampire Novels Box Set: For Love or Vengeance, To Love and Serve, Born to Love: http://amzn.to/2rPaE2a

#TeaserTuesday DARE TO LOVE in Taming the Vampire

TAMING THE VAMPIRE is our vampire romance anthology featuring ALL NEW stories from 25 bestselling authors! You can read more about the anthology here: http://bit.ly/tamingvamp

You can purchase TAMING THE VAMPIRE at these online retailers:

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2bfy9Js
Kobo http://bit.ly/2by9MsM
iBooks: http://apple.co/2byaNAP
B&N: http://bit.ly/2byaGoW

My contribution to the collection is DARE TO LOVE, a new story in THE CALLING IS REBORN Vampire series. DARE TO LOVE features vampire slayer Benjamin, a sexy alpha hero who first appeared in TO LOVE AND SERVE.

Today I have a teaser for you from TO LOVE AND SERVE. In this scene, Benjamin is helping vampire Ryder Latimer and damphir Michaela investigate the death of another vampire.

Teaser TO LOVE AND SERVE

    He lived alone for centuries until she came into his life. . .

    Southern vampire Ryder Latimer had never expected to love again or to live again until FBI Agent Diana Reyes came into his life and made him believe it was possible to believe in the future. When a mission goes horribly bad, Ryder risks his life to save his lover. When he takes a bullet for her, he contaminates her with his blood, saving her life, but condemning her to a slow death as his vampire cells take over her body.

    Since her father’s death years earlier, she had dedicated her life to protecting others…

    Diana Reyes’s father had died in her arms and since that date, she’s served others in order to obtain justice and keep the world safe. When sexy Ryder Latimer saunters into her life, he challenges what she believed was meant to be her life. There’s just one problem: Now when she really believes in the possibility of happily-ever-after, her life is slipping away from her and Diana must decide whether to become a vampire in order to stay with the man she loves.

Excerpt

Click here if you cannot see the TO LOVE AND SERVE excerpt below.

Click here for more about TO LOVE AND SERVE.

#WriteWed Throwaway Characters that Refuse to Go Away

Sometimes when you’re creating a world, like that in THE CALLING IS REBORN or even the JERSEY GIRL BRIDESMAIDS, you develop character that you think you’ll only use for a few scenes or as a foil to someone else in the story.

When you’re writing vampire suspense, that character’s story line may sometimes end up with them dead, which was what I had originally envisioned for Benjamin, the Vampire Slayer in DARE TO LOVE, my story in the TAMING THE VAMPIRE anthology.

But as I “killed off” Benjamin in TO LOVE AND SERVE, his death bothered me. I had really gotten to like Benjamin and since he couldn’t have his happily-ever-after with Michaela, I wanted to find a way for him to find his soul mate and knew I just had to write his story.

Plus, since the world in The Calling had been thrown into upheaval with several major changes in the lives of Diana and Ryder, I knew that the Scooby Gang around them had to grow and change as well. You’ll see more of that group of friends and some old names, like santero Ricardo from DEVOTION CALLS.

I hope you enjoyed this behind the scenes look into DARE TO LOVE and a writer’s inspiration.

You can purchase TAMING THE VAMPIRE at these online retailers:

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2bfy9Js
Kobo http://bit.ly/2by9MsM
iBooks: http://apple.co/2byaNAP
B&N: http://bit.ly/2byaGoW
tvad

#FreebieFriday GHOST OF A CHANCE

It’s almost that spooky time when all the ghouls, goblins, and ghosts emerge. To get you into the holiday spirit, I’ve got a free download for you of GHOST OF A CHANCE, a ghost hunting story set on the Jersey Shore. Here’s a little blurb for the story:

What would you do to win a million dollary prize?

True crime writer Tracy Gomez is unsure of what to make of the unusual invitation from New York City attorney Peter Angelo: A one million dollar prize to anyone who can solve the mystery of three deaths which had occurred nearly eighty years earlier. Tracy desperately needs the money to fix up the old inn she’s just inherited and solving the crime will also provide welcome publicity to help her sagging writing career. But accepting the invitation brings unexpected challenges, like spectral help during a séance and Tracy’s attraction to the sexy attorney monitoring the contest. Does Tracy only have a ghost of a chance to discover the secrets of the past or can she win a prize far better than a million dollars?

If the novella is not yet free on Amazon, please let them know about the lower price at the other retailers! Thanks.

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2dOweOJ
B&N: http://bit.ly/2eCNWDW
iBooks: http://apple.co/2eCJFQR
Kobo: http://bit.ly/2eCQMJ9
goac

Don’t forget you can also get a great deal on 25 ALL NEW stories from 25 bestselling authors in Taming the VampireTAMING THE VAMPIRE. My contribution to the collection is DARE TO LOVE, a new story in THE CALLING IS REBORN Vampire series. The anthology is only 99 cents for a limited time and best of all, these are ALL NEW stories! Not re-releases and not available anywhere except in the anthology. You can read more about the anthology here: http://bit.ly/tamingvamp

You can purchase TAMING THE VAMPIRE at these online retailers:

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2bfy9Js
Kobo http://bit.ly/2by9MsM
iBooks: http://apple.co/2byaNAP
B&N: http://bit.ly/2byaGoW

#WriteWed Power Love Redemption Hate in THE CALLING IS REBORN Vampire Series

One of the things I’ve loved about writing THE CALLING IS REBORN Vampire series is exploring the motivations that drive some of the immortals in the stories. My desire to explore is driven by that age-old adage about absolute power corrupting absolutely. Imagine the kind of power that immortals have, whether Slayer or Vampire. Imagine what they can do once they are possessed of that power.

I’ve loved seeing how characters that start out good, like Blake from FURY CALLS, who started out protecting his younger brothers from abuse, lose their goodness when they’re turned. Blake embraces his vampire power and not in a good way, but I also love a good story about the strength of love and redemption. That’s what FURY CALLS is all about and I loved seeing how Blake retrieves the goodness inside him in order to protect the woman he loves.

Taming the Vampire Box SetIn DARE TO LOVE from the TAMING THE VAMPIRE Box set, Vampire Slayer Benjamin has maintained his goodness despite seeing his family brutally killed by vampires. Unlike some of the other Slayers, who can’t wait to sanction a vampire, Benjamin retains the belief that even vampires can be good. When Benjamin’s brother is twisted by hate that destroys him, Benjamin has to deal with the consequences, but can he resist the power he’s been given and find balance in his new life? Can he allow himself to love another Slayer while fighting to retain the goodness inside him?

That battle to allow love to overcome hate, to be redeemed when power threatens to corrupt Benjamin’s soul, is the heart of DARE TO LOVE, the next story in THE CALLING IS REBORN Vampire series. DARE TO LOVE is the start of that story and I will have Benjamin and his love, Rhiannon, in future stories so you can see where their love will take them.

Teaser

    Months earlier, Slayer Council member Benjamin hadn’t been ready to die and begged for his life from a compassionate vampire. Being turned and living as a vampire had created a new hell for him, however. He was no longer welcome in the Council, but tolerated as their ranks had been depleted. He knew that it was just a matter of time until someone staked him, but he wanted to make the most of it, especially when it came to Slayer-in-training Rhiannon.

    Rhiannon had been attracted to Ben when he had been her instructor in the ways of the Slayers. His death had caused her grief, but his return was proving to be even more difficult as she battled her growing feelings for the Slayer-turned-vampire who was shaking up her beliefs in all that she had been taught.

    Can Ben and Rhiannon dare to defy the rules of the Slayers and find love or will Fate make them enemies sworn to kill one another?

Purchase

DARE TO LOVE is part of the TAMING THE VAMPIRE box set which is now available for pre-order. It’s specially priced at 99 cents, so don’t miss this awesome deal for 25 ALL NEW releases that are not available anywhere else.

You can purchase TAMING THE VAMPIRE at these online retailers:

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2bfy9Js
Kobo http://bit.ly/2by9MsM
iBooks: http://apple.co/2byaNAP
B&N: http://bit.ly/2byaGoW
Power love redemption hate in The Calling is Reborn Vampire Romance series

#WriteWed The Calling is Reborn Vampire Series & TAMING THE VAMPIRE Boxset

Taming the VampireWhen I wrote the first book in THE CALLING IS REBORN vampire series, DARKNESS CALLS, I knew I had to write more stories around the core characters, FBI Agent Diana Reyes and Southern Vampire Ryder Latimer, even though I only had a one book contract with Harlequin. Luckily, Harlequin agreed and there are now more than a dozen books in the series.

I knew that I had to surround Diana and Ryder with other unique characters and build a world that others would like to visit. The backdrop for that world was New York City, but it was the humans and vampires that brought the city to life.

Some of my favorites are Blake, a sexy punk British vampire, Foley, the vampire owner of the Blood Bank, Peter Daly, an NYPD homocide detective, and a trio of FBI agents – ADIC Jesus Hernandez, Agent David Harris and Medical Examiner Maggie Gonzalez.

As the world of THE CALLING IS REBORN grew, those characters would come back in recurring roles and get their own stories, except for Foley. Don’t worry, his story is coming one day because he truly fascinates me.

But I knew that to keep the world growing, it wasn’t enough to just have humans and vampires battling each other and evil, I needed other types of characters.

In TO LOVE AND SERVE, the world expanded, bringing into the mythology the Vampire Slayers and dhampir Michaela Ramirez. In BORN TO LOVE, various shifters added to the growing world and the battle between humans, vampires, and slayers.

The hero in DARE TO LOVE, my contribution to TAMING THE VAMPIRE, first appeared in TO LOVE AND SERVE and from the moment that vampire slayer Benjamin came onto the page, I knew he was going to have a story. An emotional, sad, and anguished story, but with a happily-ever-after at the end.

DARE TO LOVE is the start of that story and I will have Benjamin and his love, Rhiannon, in future stories so you can see where their love will take them.

Teaser

    Months earlier, Slayer Council member Benjamin hadn’t been ready to die and begged for his life from a compassionate vampire. Being turned and living as a vampire had created a new hell for him, however. He was no longer welcome in the Council, but tolerated as their ranks had been depleted. He knew that it was just a matter of time until someone staked him, but he wanted to make the most of it, especially when it came to Slayer-in-training Rhiannon.

    Rhiannon had been attracted to Ben when he had been her instructor in the ways of the Slayers. His death had caused her grief, but his return was proving to be even more difficult as she battled her growing feelings for the Slayer-turned-vampire who was shaking up her beliefs in all that she had been taught.

    Can Ben and Rhiannon dare to defy the rules of the Slayers and find love or will Fate make them enemies sworn to kill one another?

Purchase

DARE TO LOVE is part of the TAMING THE VAMPIRE box set which is now available for pre-order. It’s specially priced at 99 cents, so don’t miss this awesome deal for 25 ALL NEW releases that are not available anywhere else.

You can purchase TAMING THE VAMPIRE at these online retailers:

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2bfy9Js
Kobo http://bit.ly/2by9MsM
iBooks: http://apple.co/2byaNAP
B&N: http://bit.ly/2byaGoW