Reading With Star: Love Under the Stars by R.K. Phillips

Disclaimer: None of the work in Reading With Star belongs to me. The author owns all right to the book. They have given me permission to share a bit of their work with you.

Important Note:

R.K. Phillips is sharing her latest WIP, Love Under the Stars. It currently doesn’t have a cover. I’m really excited to get this new book in my hands. This author is so talented. I just can’t even. I really hope you enjoy!

Book Info:

This is a New Adult book that features the college students that attend the University where Peyton (From Complications of Pi) teaches. You do not have to have read that book prior to this one. This book is about Eve beginning college Spring Semester and meeting a new group of friends and learning what it means to be able to rely on those around her and maybe open her heart up to love. 

Book Excerpt:

Then the two girls left to head towards class before they were indeed tardy. Thankfully class wasn’t bad and there wasn’t a lot of conversation practicing because that is when more energy was used up. However, by the end of class, Abigail knew that Eve needed a break and perhaps a nap, especially when there was no resistance to assistance.

“I am not even going to fight or argue with you carrying my stuff. Thank you. I was going to go to the library to study, but I am not sure if I can stay awake. I worry if I go to the dorm to take  a nap, I will oversleep and I don’t want to miss Trig class again.” 

Slowing her steps down a bit, Abigail offered, “What if I come over and study while you take a nap. Then I can wake you up in time to go to class.”

“Oh, I can’t ask you to do that. Plus, I am always complaining about my roommate’s friends coming over. I don’t want to give her any ammunition by having you there. I don’t have the mental fortitude to battle with her right now.”

“Then you come over to my place. My roommate is out all day with classes and doesn’t return until later.”

“Abby, that is sweet of you to offer –”

“Good. Let’s go.” She knew there was a but coming and Abigail refused to allow Eve to voice it.

Letting out a long sigh, Eve relented, “Alright. You win. Again.” 

“Hey you won when you came over to my dorm room while I was sick, but it isn’t a contest. I care and want to help out.”

“I appreciate that, but I have a hard time letting anyone help because I am so used to taking care of myself and being my own support. When you are it, then there isn’t really an opportunity to lean on anyone. You get sick, you take care of yourself. You have financial problems, you get more than one job or figure things out. Car breaks down, you call a tow and then walk or call for a paid ride. Sorry, that makes it sound like I don’t have friends or anything. I don’t mean it like that.” 

“I understand what you mean. Don’t worry. Well, in our group, we will force you to submit under our ruling thumb and take the help whether or not you want to.” Giggling, Abigail nudged Eve’s shoulder as they walked.

“I have noticed. From day one, Nori has pretty much pulled me along.”

“I believe she has adopted you as her sister and thus you are now part of the collective.”

Eve stopped and turned to face straight at Abigail and asked quietly while backing up. “Are you all part of the Borg? I will not simulate.”

Abigail couldn’t help it, she busted out laughing so hard she had to stop and lean against a tree. 

“You are laughing, so I am thinking I might be safe. Never saw any of them laugh. Then again, maybe you have more of a processor function that allows you to tap into the humor of humans. I am wondering if maybe I need to run away while I can. You know, change my identity and location.” Eve bit her lower lip in worry.

Abigail held up her hand. “Please stop… I can’t… breathe…” She bent over and of course that shifted the balance of books causing her to collapse to the ground and laugh even more.

“I think maybe your processors are now not functioning properly. Maybe I need to take you to see a doctor or perhaps you need to regenerate and that will help?” 

Eve stood there so serious and without cracking a bit of a smile and that is what really aided in the uncontrollable laughter. Abigail would never have been able to have delivered so many lines without breaking character. She held one finger up in the air to signal Eve to give her a minute.

“I believe that most people hold up the middle finger, not the pointer finger, do they not? Is the Borg different? Does the significance of the first finger indicate something?” 


“Drop and Roll? I don’t think rolling around on the cold ground would be good for my health at this point. Actually, it probably isn’t good for you to be sitting on it as well, especially now that you are coughing. I will behave now. Let’s get you up before you relapse and then the rest of your collective comes after me chanting ‘Resistance is Futile.’” 

Eve held out her hand to Abigail and once she calmed down and resumed breathing without coughing, Abigail grabbed it and hoisted herself up off the ground. Then she grabbed their bags again and they resumed walking. “You were amazing. How could you keep going with a straight face?”

“Drama class. But, thinking of you as the Borg helped a lot, too.” 

“You definitely have skills dear.”

“Thank you.”

They chatted for a few as they finished walking to Abigail’s dorm. Then by the time they had climbed up to her room, Eve was really pale and slow. “You definitely need to lie down and take a nap.” Opening the door, Abigail let their bags slide to the floor next to the desk before helping Eve to sit down on the bed.

“Come on now. Lay back and rest. Here, I will get you a fresh blanket.” Abigail rummaged in her tote and pulled out a soft one and covered up Eve. “Go to sleep and I will wake you up in time for your next class.”

“Thank you Abby.” In less than three minutes Eve was asleep. Not wanting to be a weird creeper and watch her sleep, Abigail pulled out her own homework to work on. She set the alarm so she didn’t lose track of time and then began working.

When the alarm sounded, Abigail quickly turned it off and stretched. Then she turned to look at the sleeping woman in her bed and admitted to herself that she liked seeing Eve amongst her things. She sat down on the edge of the mattress and spoke softly. “Eve, time to wake up for your class.” The woman didn’t stir. Maybe she was a sound sleeper. Abigail reached out and shook Eve gently on the arm. “Eve, dear, time to wake up.” That got a little movement and mumbling out of the woman. “Come on now, you will get mad at both of us if you don’t wake up.” Abigail moved part of Eve’s hair and ended up touching her forehead. The girl was warm. She hurried up and dug until she found a thermometer and was glad it was one you could use on the forehead. She looked down and it read 101.1. “You will have to hate me later, but you aren’t going to class.” Debating on whether or not to make Eve wake up to take some pain reliever and water or to let her sleep, Abigail finally settled for giving her 30-45 minutes and then check her fever again and see where she was at.

One thing was certain, she needed to call the library and let them know that Eve wouldn’t be going to work that night either. She went on the campus website and located the phone number for the library and called them. When someone answered, she asked to speak to someone in charge and then quickly explained the situation. The woman was very nice and understanding and told Abigail to make sure that Eve rested and to reach out tomorrow and update them. 

After that call was done, she knew she wouldn’t be able to concentrate and ended up pacing the floor a bit and doing some quiet cleaning. After almost forty minutes passed, she took Eve’s temperature again and it showed 102.4. Well, that settled it. She grabbed a lukewarm bottle of water and two ibuprofen from the bottle Eve left for her when she was here and set them on the table. Then she sat back down on the bed and peeled the blanket back from Eve and ran her hand up and down the woman’s arm to try and help wake her.

“Eve, hun, I need you to wake up enough for me to take some meds.” The other woman didn’t stir. She tried again. Shaking Eve lightly this time to try and stir her, Abigail spoke a little louder, “Come on Eve, please wake up so I don’t have to call someone for help. You are worrying me.” 

With that Eve mumbled and cracked open her eyes just a fraction. “Let me sleep, the monkeys were playing peek a boo.” 

“I need you to sit up so you can take some meds.” Abigail sat down and helped Eve to raise up and prop up against Abigail’s side. Reaching over to the table, she grabbed the two pills and ordered, “Open up your mouth so you can take these ibuprofen and take this bottle of water.” Eve did as requested, but she started to drop the bottle, so Abigail grabbed ahold of it to help. Once she managed to get the pills down Eve, she helped the other woman to settle back down onto the bed. She really was getting concerned about her. She decided she better text the group. She hated to leave Eve, but she did need to get to her class if one of the others could come sit with Eve.

Abigail: Hey guys. Eve is in my room asleep and has a fever. I am worried. I finally got her to take meds. Anyone free this afternoon to sit while I attend class?

Nori: Poor girl. Why is she in your room?

Melissa: Not the point Nori. I am free Abby. Be there in 15.

A: Thanks Mel.

N: I’m sorry. I was just curious why she wasn’t in her own was all.

N: Need anything from the cafeteria or the store? 

A: Actually, some water and maybe Pedialyte or Gatorade? Fluids. I need to see what I can do for her. 

N: How high was her temp?

A: 102.4 when I gave her some meds. 

N: Keep a sheet on her rather than a blanket and maybe a cool cloth along her neck. If it goes up any more, we can take her to the health clinic. I will get some stuff and meet Mel back at your room.

A: Thanks. I wouldn’t leave, but I have already missed so much class.

M: Almost there. She probably is having a setback from the flu. I have a mask and a book to read. 

K: Hey. Was in class. Just saw the messages. Let me know if you need something and Logan and I can come over. 

A: Thanks guys.

Abigail put her books into her bag and switched out the fuzzy blanket that was over Eve for a sheet. She wasn’t sure if it would help, but it would probably make Eve more comfortable, so Abigail removed the woman’s shoes and socks. She leaned down and kissed the top of Eve’s head and heard a gentle knocking on the door. 

Opening the door found Melissa on the other side. “Hey Mel! Come on in. Thanks for coming by. I am sure she would kick both of our butts if she knew I requested a watcher, but I didn’t want to leave her alone. I need to rush. Make yourself at home as usual. I will be back as soon as my class is done.” 

“No problem. I am going to take advantage of your roomie’s bean bag chair and read something that isn’t a textbook.” 

Abigail smirked and picked up her book bag and hurried out the door. 

Note From Star:

Hope you enjoyed this excerpt of Love Under the Stars by R.K. Phillips. There aren’t currently any buy links for this book, but she does have other works that I fully recommend checking out. Including her debut novel, Complications of Pi. It’s a wonderful sapphic romance that I adore very much. She also has a novel called Nature’s Strike that she will be turning into an amazing series! Give her a follow!

Have an excerpt you want to share? Contact me at so we can discuss it!

Reading With Star: Blackstone: Dahlia by Kate Davison

Disclaimer: None of the work in Reading With Star belongs to me. The author owns all right to the book. They have given me permission to share a bit of their work with you.

Available now at your favorite digital store!


Secrets. Betrayal. Murder. It’s all a day in the life of a Blackstone.

Thirty years ago, my father killed my mother in a fit of jealousy—or at least that was what I was led to believe. I heard him crying and calling my name as I hid in the back of a closet. I know he was there and assumed the right man is doing the time.

After an anonymous note questions Jesse Blackstone’s guilt, I find myself pulled back into the past and my hometown where secrets hide, and I try to reconstruct my mother’s life and the events that resulted in her murder.

Now, those who knew my mother back then are turning up dead, and raising more questions than I can answer. And all I know about my life is about to get turned up on its head.


Nathan opened the car door for me. I slid into the seat. He had a nice SUV. Big. Sturdy. Clean. It wasn’t a new model but was very well cared for. That told me a lot about his character as an adult.
He turned to me as he buckled his seatbelt. “You look nice.”
“Thanks. So do you.” Awkward small talk was never my thing. This was painful.
Da Vinci stood on the chair; his head poked out the curtains watching me leave. He threw his head back. Even though I couldn’t hear him, I knew he howled.
Nathan shot me a worried glance. “Is he going to do that all evening?”
“I don’t know. He usually isn’t away from me for too long. If I go somewhere that he can go, I take him.”
Nathan smiled. “Change of plans.”
“What?” Shock moved through me as I watched him get out of the car. By this point, Cal had come to the window to try and get Da Vinci to settle.
Nathan knocked and I watched the door open. A moment later, Nathan reappeared with my dog. He carried the leash but didn’t have it fastened to Da Vinci. The dog trotted to the SUV and waited patiently for Nathan to open the back of the truck. Da Vinci jumped into the backseat as if it was part of his normal routine.
I turned around and ruffled his ears and jowls. “You look very pleased with yourself.”
He licked the side of my face as if in agreement.
“Everyone ready?” Nathan’s voice had taken on a cheery tone.
And we were off.
We drove out to the boardwalk where Gulf met land. Shops and arcades were situated on one side and the surf rolled in on the other.
Da Vinci tried to look out both windows at once as we parked. All the lights and people had him excited for the excursion. So many new smells and things to investigate.
“You know he’s thinking this is his best date ever.” I opened my door and jumped out before Nathan could come around to the passenger side. The fact he thought to include my distressed puppy had me feeling all kinds of warm thoughts that I probably shouldn’t have.
Nathan smiled and looked down at Da Vinci. “I know the feeling, buddy.”
I swallowed.
No. He didn’t just say that.
We walked out onto the boards and joined the crowds of people out for a stroll. Now, this was what I meant about keeping it casual. I might have been nervous, but walking relaxed me. Kept the jitters at bay.
Nathan had taken Da Vinci’s lead and the dog walked in front of us like a goodwill ambassador for pet adoption. His flat nose stuck up in the air sniffing as if he’d caught a scent.
“He’s a great dog,” Nathan said as Da Vinci stopped and tried to catch a scent on the breeze. He began to whine.
“Yeah, he’s the best.” A sense of foreboding went up my back. Da Vinci was acting weird.
I put my hands down in my pockets and watched as Da Vinci backed up and went on sudden alert.
Then the screaming started.

Note From Star:

I hope you enjoyed a glimpse of Blackstone: Dahlia. Please consider clicking the link above and grabbing a copy of this book.

Have an excerpt you want to share? Contact me at so we can discuss it!

Reading With Star: Soul of Eli by Pamela Gail

Disclaimer: None of the work in Reading With Star belongs to me. The author owns all right to the book. They have given me permission to share a bit of their work with you.

Choosing a future is never easy.
Eli Sterling is the star pitcher on his high school baseball team. He has a bright future in
the majors, but recently, something has changed.
He’s angry, moody, and scared.
It seems that no matter how hard he works, he always falls short in someone’s eyes.
Except for Izzy. She is his best friend and the only one who understands.
As he begins to question everything about who he is and what he truly wants for his
future, the only place he finds peace is in the treehouse that sits between his house and
Both a blessing and a curse, their bond keeps him together, even as he slowly spirals out
of control and realizes that not all is what it seems, and learns that it’s okay to reach for
the dream.
Adolescent Angst
Substance Use

“Eli!” someone yells, gaining my attention.
“Huh?” I question, pulling myself back to reality.
“Bell rang,” Jonesy tells me.
I look around at an almost empty classroom. Other than Jonesy and me, all the students have left. Coach is at his desk typing something on his computer.
“Yeah, uh, yeah, I know,” I stammer.
“Sure, you did,” he laughs.
“You guys coming?” Bomb questions, poking his head into the classroom. His homeroom is next door, and we usually walk to our next classes together.
Bomb is the best hitter we’ve got. Three years ago, during his freshmen season, he hit seven home runs in three games, earning him the nickname.
“Let’s go,” I bite.
Today, listening to my friends rag on me is not at the top of my list.
“Cranky,” Jonesy teases, following me into the hallway. Turning, I take a step toward him, getting in his face.
“You don’t want to push me today,” I snap.
“You don’t want to start something you can’t handle,” he returns.
“Wanna bet,” I bark, shoving him and causing his back to hit the wall behind him.
He retaliates, taking a step forward and pushing me. “What the hell, Eli?” he yells.
Students gather around us, hungry for a fight. I stumble back a few steps, quickly regaining my footing and getting in his face again.
“That was a mistake.”
I raise a fist in one fluid motion and punch him in the nose. Blood spews, splattering our shirts. He staggers backwards, hitting the wall again. The crowd cheers and hollers encouraging us to fight. Jonesy pushes himself away from the wall and takes a step toward me. He’s tough, I’ll give him that.
“What the fuck is wrong with you?” he yells. Jonesy takes a swing at me, but I see it coming and take a small step to the left. His hits my shoulder with enough force to knock me back.
Quickly, I move towards him, ready to hit him again, but Bomb steps between us. He puts both hands on my chest, blocking my advances. I fight against Bomb as Jonesy attempts to push past him to get to me. Bomb is strong, but not strong enough to hold us away from one another for long.
“Stop!” Bomb yells. Cap steps behind Bomb and tries to hold Jonesy back while Bomb holds me in place.
A few teachers shove their way through the mass of students.
“Enough!” One of them yells. She looks at Jonesy. “Are you okay?” Jonesy nods. He’s not okay. Blood pours from his now crooked nose and covers the front of his shirt. It looks bad. “Let’s get you to the nurse,” she continues, shaking her head at me before escorting Jonesy down the hall.
“What the hell is your problem?” Bomb yells, pinning me with a disappointing glare.
“He was being an ass,” I yell, throwing my hands up as if my statement is explanation enough. Bomb doesn’t get a chance to argue before Coach steps up.
“Everybody get to class,” he bellows over the noise. Kids scramble in every direction. Bomb doesn’t budge. I turn to head for my next class, but Coach grabs my arm. “Not you. Go to class, Bomb,” he commands. Bomb rushes off. “Let’s go,” Coach tells me, leading me toward the office. “Do you know how much trouble you’re in?”
“Does it matter?”
“I don’t know what the hell is wrong with you lately, but you better get yourself together, or you’ll be off the team?”
“Like that’ll happen,” I mumble.
Whether he understood me or was trying to get me to repeat it doesn’t matter. He knows I’m right. The team needs me. There’s no way they’ll go to State with the other pitchers. They’re decent but not good enough to take us all the way.
When we walk into the office, Mr. McCaffrey, the principal, is waiting. Word travels fast. Guess it doesn’t hurt that the nurse’s office is next to the main office.
“Thank you. I’ll take it from here.” Mr. McCaffrey tells Coach.
Coach leaves, and Mr. McCaffrey steps aside, motioning for me to step into his office.
“Have a seat, Eli. Tell me what happened.”
“He got in my face.”
“So, you hit Jonesy and probably broke his nose.”
“He got in my face,” I repeat louder.
“Don’t yell at me. That’s no excuse for what you did. Your parents are on their way to pick you up. I’m suspending you for three days.”
“What? I can’t play ball if I’m suspended. The team needs me.”
“You should have thought about that before you punched someone.”
I stand up, slapping my hands on his desk. “Come on, this isn’t fair.”
“Sit down, Mr. Sterling,” he insists firmly.
I don’t move, but I speak a little calmer. “Jonesy will be fine. I didn’t hit him that hard..”
“Sit down, now.” Before I can move, there’s a knock on the door.
“Come in,” he calls.
My parents walk into the office full of anger and disappointment. Great. The next three days are going to be hell. I take that seat Mr. McCaffrey keeps insisting on, and my parents sit in the other two chairs. Mr. McCaffrey explains what happened and then tells them about my suspension.
“What do have to say for yourself, son?”
I stare at my dad in response. Nothing I can say will make him happy, get me out of trouble, or make anything about this situation better, so I keep my mouth shut.
“Answer me,” Dad bellows, standing up and looming over me. He thinks he intimidates me.
“What do you want me to say?” I yell, getting up and standing toe to toe with him. “Jonesy got what he deserved, and I’d do it again. Get the fuck off my back.”
“My dad grabs my arm and pulls me to the door. “Go to the car. I’ll deal with you later.” He shoves me into the main office.
Instead of going to the car, I wait outside of Mr. McCaffrey’s door, so I can listen to their conversation. I deserve to know what they say about me.
“Is there anything else we need to do?” My mom asks the principal.
“No. Eli can return on Monday. I’ll speak to Coach about how this will affect him playing baseball. He won’t be able to play in any of the games before Monday, but Coach might want to add his own punishment since he hit a teammate. Also, you can expect to hear from Jonesy’s family. I’m sure there will be doctor bills involved. That will have to be handled between the two families.”
“We understand. Thank you,” she says in a sickeningly sweet voice as if being all sugary is going to make this better.
It was stupid of me to hit Jonesy. We’ve been friends and teammates half our life. If it hadn’t happened at school, he would have made up some lie to tell his parents, and eventually, we both would have calmed down, apologized, and moved forward. Now the school is involved, and my parents will probably have to pay his doctor bills. Damn.

Note From Star:

I hope you enjoyed a glimpse of Soul of Eli. Please consider clicking the link above and grabbing a copy of this book.

Have an excerpt you want to share? Contact me at so we can discuss it!

ReadingWith Star: Killer Fiction by Rosemary Willhide

Disclaimer: None of the work in Reading With Star belongs to me. The author owns all right to the book. They have given me permission to share a bit of their work with you.

KILLER FICTION by Rosemary Willhide 

⭐Amazon US:

⭐Universal link:

⭐Goodreads link:



Killer Fiction: A small-town murder mystery with big secrets (A Hope Ridge Mystery Book 1)

When a phone rings in the middle of the night, it usually spells trouble.

For best-selling author, Caroline Carter this is no exception.

Before Caroline’s cell jolts her awake, her biggest issue is her current bout of writer’s block. From the second she answers the call in her California home, everything unravels.

Her half-sister, Kaitlin has been brutally murdered and the police only have one suspect, her brother, Jamie.

It forces Caroline to go back to a place she loathes, her home town, Hope Ridge.

Hope Ridge, Pennsylvania is a small town where nothing ever happens. Everyone knows your name—and your business. In Hope Ridge, everyone knows the reason why Caroline has been running away for over twenty years.

Her past is complicated. Her family is complicated . . . and her family secrets could be deadly.



When I slumped back in my chair the reality of Kaitlin’s murder sunk in. I was so distraught over Jamie being arrested, I hadn’t fully absorbed that there was a killer out there and they took her life. Someone killed my sister. She was dead.

“Uh, Caroline, you okay?”

“Yeah. I think it’s all catching up with me. You know, Kaitlin. I mean we weren’t close. Which is my fault. I never made an effort and now . . . Who would want her dead? None of this makes any sense.”

“In all my years of law enforcement, I haven’t seen anything like this.”

“I can’t believe I didn’t ask you sooner. You mentioned you found the murder weapon close to Jamie’s car. What was it? A gun? Because he’s afraid of guns.”

“Nah, it was an old wrench. The preliminary report from the field says it was blunt force trauma to the back of her skull and she had a grocery bag over her head. So, they’re thinking the killer struck her and then suffocated her, but here’s the strangest part.”

As Sheriff Brady spoke my head spun. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. It was as if I knew what he was going to say before he uttered another syllable.

At the exact same time, we said, “They cut off all the fingers on her right hand.” The Sheriff leaned forward. “How did you know that?”

“I wrote that. It’s from one of my books.”

“Someone murdered my sister, and wanted my brother to take the fall. I wouldn’t rest until the real killer was behind bars.”

A small-town murder mystery with big secrets.

Note From Star:

I hope you enjoyed a glimpse of Killer Fiction. Please consider clicking the link above and grabbing a copy of this book.

Have an excerpt you want to share? Contact me at so we can discuss it!

Reading With Star: A Coming Out Story

Disclaimer: None of the work in Reading With Star belongs to me. The author owns all right to the book. They have given me permission to share a bit of their work with you.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Due to circumstances, today’s author needed to be rescheduled. Not wanting anybody to miss out on something special, I decided to share something I wrote a few years ago. I was originally going to share something I wrote for NANO in 2015, but I chickened out. I still need to get back into that and polish it and see what happens. This is something I wrote shortly after I came out. I wrote it in hopes that somebody would read it and not go through the same struggles as I did through my life. People in this piece may or may not be real. Names aren’t the same for the people who are real.

On the outside, Shanna seemed like a very happy and well-balanced individual. Nobody could see the pain she faced. Nobody knew that she struggled with fears and depression every single day. Not even those close to her. Throughout the years, many people walked out of her life because they didn’t understand her. They didn’t know the real her.
When Shanna was nine, she experienced her very first crush. The realization humiliated and shamed her. Her first crush was on a girl. Her family was very religious. They practiced a very Southern Baptist faith. Knowing her family would never understand how she felt, she forced herself to pretend she didn’t feel the crush.
As time went on, she found herself crushing on many girls. She pushed the feelings back every time. She discovers that she also has crushes on boys too. So, she focuses her attention on that instead. She didn’t care if she pushed too far. It helped. At least for awhile.
When Shanna turned 14, she started high school. It had been a year since she felt a crush for any girl. She thought that maybe it was a phase in her life that she was over. She was relieved. She focused on her schoolwork and making friends. She was happy and comfortable. She discovered that she enjoyed writing poetry after learning about it in English.
Midway through the semester, there was a new girl in her science class. Her name was Grace. Shanna knew the moment that they locked eyes that this girl was special. She knew that what she had felt since she was nine years old wasn’t just a phase. Locking eyes with Grace, she knew that this would be harder to just shrug off.
Grace and Shanna spent a lot time passing notes for the remainder of the school year. They became very good friends. Shanna was sure that Grace felt the same for her that she did, but she was too afraid to ask. She wasn’t ready to cross that line still. She was still worried about what her family would think of her. Every time she and Grace touched, she felt a rush through her body that. She couldn’t describe the feeling and she did her best to fight off the urge to shiver.
At the end of the year, Grace moved away. Shanna was heartbroken. She never got the nerve to say how she really felt, but she knew that she loved Grace. She cherished every single letter she got from Grace and read them over and over. Now, she’d never see Grace again. Never get the courage to tell her how she really felt.
Years went by, Shanna constantly fought off any crushes she had on girls. She dated guys that she really cared about. She was happy, but she never really felt whole. She spent quite a few years wondering about Grace and what had happened to her. She felt restless. The happier she felt with who she was, the sadder she felt about what she wasn’t.
When she was seventeen, she finally let her guard down. She met a lovely girl named Tammy who she really liked. They got close. Tammy was her first girl kiss. Sadly, her stepmother caught the kiss and forbid Shanna ever speak to Tammy again. She was crushed. She realized she’d never be able to fully be who she felt inside she was.
Shanna decided to move forward with her life. She decided to stop pursuing any relationships and focus on her senior year. Her senior year she meets a girl named Lacey who she realizes she has strong feelings for. She also admires Lacey greatly.
Lacey was everything Shanna felt like she could never be. She was confident. She was happy. She let herself follow her urges and desires and didn’t care what anybody thought about her. Many people would consider Lacey a bad influence as well as other things. Shanna never thought that. She thought Lacey was amazing.
Shanna and Lacey became the best of friends. They spent a lot of time in between classes that year. They walked each other to classes holding hands. They became surrounded by a group of friends who they adored. It was great. Shanna felt legitimately happy for the first time in a long time. She wasn’t constantly wondering about the what ifs.
Shanna graduated and never heard from Lacey again. She lost contact with many of the friends she made through school. Feeling depressed, she wound up going to hang out places that were out of her comfort zone. She met a guy there that she thought was wonderful. She would later find out that he was far from wonderful.
After the relationship ended, she spent several years going in and out of brief relationships. She didn’t want to stay with anybody long. She was scared. She didn’t want to be hurt in the way she had. She also didn’t want to come to terms with the fact that she was really into girls. She’d let a few people know about it, but still wasn’t ready to fully come out.
When Shanna turned twenty-seven, she met a wonderful man named Zane. Somebody she didn’t think existed. Somebody who had more in common with her than she ever thought would be possible. For almost five years, they were very happy, but as time went on, she started feeling like a huge part of her was missing. Not wanting to ruin things like she always did, she suppressed these feelings.
She kept suppressing these feelings for a quite awhile until something major happened to her. Shanna decided to attend an event that she knew would be amazing and good for her. This event was way out of her comfort zone, but she was excited.
It was at this event that she realized she’d never be comfortable in her own skin unless she embraced all of her. She met a girl named Lynn. She and Lynn connected immediately. She wasn’t able to keep her mind off Lynn. Shortly after the event ended, Shanna came out as bisexual. She never felt freer.
Several months after the event, she can’t get her mind of Lynn. She had several discussions with Zane about this. She felt blessed to have him in her life. She could tell him anything and everything and he’d support her. She was free to explore women now thanks to him. They had even talked about having an open relationship to an extent.
Lynn and Shanna kept in touch. Eventually the subject of sexuality came up. It was very deep and heartfelt. Shanna realized she’d never be able to tell Lynn how she really felt. Lynn was very happy in her marriage and family life. She’d never do anything to change that for Lynn.
Lynn and Shanna remained good friends. The conversation that they had never got brought up again. Shanna struggles with herself and where to go from here. She has spent most of her life hiding who she was and now she doesn’t have to. It is a struggle she faces every day.
Shanna spends every day wondering how different her life would have been had she not been afraid to be who she was. She wonders how many people’s life she could impact and change if she tells her story, so they don’t life their life in fear like she did.
Shanna is happy. She has no regrets about how she’s living her life. She looks forward to what her future holds. While she thinks that things would have been drastically different had she been comfortable in her skin much earlier in life, she realizes that it’s not too late to change things.
Shanna’s life isn’t perfect. There are still many things that she could do to improve. She’s happy though. She’s excited about things that will happen in her future. She is confident and hopeful that things will happen her way. She’s confident that she will meet somebody that is the perfect fit for what she’s looking for.
She’s not fully comfortable with herself. She grows more comfortable in her skin every day. She also realizes that not everybody is going to fully accept her for who she is. She’s okay with that. She realized after she came out that those who are meant to be in her life will stay in her life.
One of Shanna’s biggest dreams is that she can tell her story to anybody who will listen. That she can make it known that she is there if anybody needs to reach out. Growing up, Shanna felt alone and scared. She felt she had nobody she could open up to about how she felt. She would never want that for anybody. She will try to help as many people as she can to keep her from feeling the way she did.

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Reading With Star: Twisted by Krys Fenner

Disclaimer: None of the work in Reading With Star belongs to me. The author owns all right to the book. They have given me permission to share a bit of their work with you.

Release Date: August 29th, 2023

Dark Road Series Book 5
Written by Krys Fenner
© Two Realms Publishing LLC

April 27, 2014

Heather stood there by her brother as he protectively blocked his girlfriend from the federal officers. Not that it was necessary. No, these guys were there for their parents, but she couldn’t tell her brother she knew that. Or that she’d turned them in for their crimes. It was rather satisfying to watch two staunch government officials haul her parents out of the house in handcuffs.
“I feel like I’m missing something, or I’m being punked,” her brother said.
Some small part of her felt bad for hiding this from her brother, but if he’d known what she intended to do, he might’ve tried to stop her. Their parents were horrible people, and they deserved what came to them. The only way to hide her pleased smile was to remain silent.
“I promise you, that’s not the case,” Detective Owen commented. “They have a legitimate warrant to arrest both of your parents for a slew of crimes, including money laundering and embezzlement.”
“I’m sorry, what?” David’s eyes widened.
Her gaze snapped to the detective. Money laundering? How the fuck had that popped up? She and Luis had carefully gone through every shred of evidence they’d found. Nothing amongst those files pointed to money laundering. Had they missed something? No, that couldn’t be the case.
One way to find out.
“You think you know someone.” Heather barely contained a smirk. The things her brother didn’t know about their parents was rather extensive. None of that mattered. Right now, she needed a quick escape. “Excuse me. I’m going to call our lawyer.” Stepping off to the side, she put enough distance between them that no one should be able to overhear her conversation.
It would ruin everything if the FBI discovered how a chunk of their evidence had been obtained. Though apparently, they had gotten more on their own outside of what she’d delivered to them. Glancing over her should, she ensured her privacy and dialed her co-conspirator, Luis. He answered on the second ring.
“Whatever you want, I’m not helping. We agreed to part ways after our work was done,” Luis said before she could get a word in edge wise.
“We did,” Heather whispered. “Except my parents just got arrested.”
“Newsflash. That’s what’s supposed to happen.”
“For money-laundering,” she snapped. Somehow, she got that out without tacking on ‘you, idiot.’ It wasn’t like he could’ve known. Right? She folded her arm across her chest and peered back at her brother, his girlfriend, and the detective. The three of them just stood there as more and more federal officers disappeared inside the house.
“What? That’s not possible. We didn’t find any evidence of that.”
“I know that, but I’m telling you they’ve been arrested for embezzlement and money-laundering.” Though Owen had said there were other charges. Shit. She hadn’t thought about that. What other charges? “We need to meet.”
“Fine,” Luis sighed with exasperation. “When?”
“Two hours. Valley Coffee and Beans.” It wasn’t the most secluded, but it would have to do. They were in a bit of a crunch, with no time to plan anything out. To figure out where it all went wrong, they’d have to go through everything they’d found.
“I’ll be there.”
Good. She didn’t need him to argue or fight with her about this. Yes, they’d broken up months ago and for good reason, but he’d helped her hack her parents’ records and set this up. He needed to see this shit through. “Then I’ll see you soon.” Without another word, Heather disconnected the call.
“Did you get a hold of the lawyer?”
Heather bit her tongue, barely holding her shock in place. She glanced over her shoulder at her brother. Christ, she hadn’t even heard him approach. Maybe she should put a bell around his neck. It would be harder to hide things from him in a smaller living space. Flashing a pearly white smile, she faced David. “Uh, no. It went to voicemail. Of course, it is Sunday, so that could be why.”
“Did you try his cell?”
“I don’t have that. Do you?” If so, why the fuck was she pretending to call the damn lawyer in the first place? Right. The additional charges filed against her parents. Not that it should matter. It simply meant they’d go away for a lot longer than she originally expected. That was fucking great! Unless, of course, something blew back on her and her brother. She definitely didn’t want that. Better to react now rather than later.
“Of course.” David smirked. “Don’t worry. I’ll call the lawyer.”
“Good.” Then she didn’t have to lie to the lawyer. Heather crossed the driveway over to the truck they had mostly loaded. She peered at Detective Russell. “Since you spoke with those agents, did you look at the warrant, too?”
“Yes. Everything is in order on their end. We just need to stay out of their way,” he replied.
“Right.” She eyed the time on her gold watch. Maybe she should’ve told Luis a few hours. Although, did they really have to stay? Heather pursed her lips. “I assume it only mentioned items that belonged to my parents, along with this residence.”
“That’s correct. Are you worried they might find something… illegal?”
“Of course not,” she smirked. Oh, no. She’d moved her and her brother’s electronic devices last night to their new apartment. No way had she intended for feds to get their hands on her equipment. All the stuff she’d paid for with her own money. Well, money from her parents, but they’d deposited those funds into her bank account. Their warrant shouldn’t apply to that, but she refused to take any chances. Right now, she simply needed to focus on getting them out of here.
“Thank you,” David said as he approached the group. He tucked his cell phone into his back pocket. “Alright. Our lawyer says just to hang tight. He’ll be here as quickly as possible.”
“Great,” Heather muttered. “Just great.” She folded her arms across her chest and scrutinized every person who traipsed in and out of their former-home. Someone had to watch them, ensuring they didn’t take anything they weren’t supposed to take. Too bad she hadn’t planned this all a little better. With any luck, once the lawyer got here, they could collect the rest of her brother’s belongings and leave.
Either way, time wasn’t on her side.

Note From Star:

I hope you enjoyed a glimpse of Twisted. Please consider clicking the link above and grabbing a copy of this book. I also fully encourage you to check out the first four books in the series. All of the covers are gorgeous, and the books are intense and addictive.

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Reading With Star: Static Elecwitchery by Sophie Ann Hoffman

Disclaimer: None of the work in Reading With Star belongs to me. The author owns all right to the book. They have given me permission to share a bit of their work with you.

Static Blurb:

Dear Diary,

I’m not ready for this, not at all. Of course, it doesn’t matter what I’m ready for, life is throwing it at me anyway…literally. After dad vanished, mom moved Holly and me to a new town in Texas where everything is just a bit…more. I thought California was on the cutting edge, but we haven’t seen anything yet and this house is out to prove it to us. Maybe Angie—a Texan version of our fairy godmother—will be able to help us get settled with the Hellhound and the new magic we discover.

Please send help,



Author’s note: Phaedra is pronounced as Fay-druh.

A few days later, I head into the kitchen in the early afternoon. Holly lets out a deep breath, hopping over to the shelf, which now holds the cookbooks that we had brought down. Yes, we had found multiple kinds. Maybe the previous owner, Jacinda, had collected them. The cast on Holly’s lower left leg weighs her down, but she’s not using her crutches. She’s admitted to me she’s tired of them, and I keep catching her going without. Grabbing the shelf prevents her face-plant into the wall. “Gotcha!” 

Book in hand, she turns, facing the space between her and the table and obviously not having noticed me. “Here goes nothing,” she says, lowering into a crouch and preparing to make the first hop. 

“Don’t you dare!” I say firmly. My words make Holly shriek and begin to teeter over. She shrieks again as I leap forward and grasp her arm to stop her from falling sideways. 

“Phaedra, I was jus–”

“Just about to break your neck,” I interrupt her, supporting her as she makes the hops to the table. “Sit and tell me what you think you’ve found. Maybe we can surprise mom with something.” 

“I think this one has recipes for desserts and candies. With Halloween right around the corner, I thought I’d try my hand at one or two.” She flips the book open to peruse the choices. “Ooh, caramel. Should be easy enough.” 

“Mmhmm,” I sigh. The thought of caramel apples fills my mind, and I can practically taste one. But, I know Holly’s penchant for messing things up, and it affects my tone, making it sound like one of disbelief.

“Fae,” Holly mutters with a deadpan expression. 

“Fine, let’s do this. I’ll help you. You are in charge, however. We both know my cooking sucks.” It’s true. Holly may mess things up, but her cooking is still better than mine. I gather the ingredients as Holly reads the list aloud from the book. Once we have everything gathered, she shoves a chair in front of the stove and leans her left knee on it, prepared to start. 

“Sugar,” she says, holding her hand out. 

“Sugar,” I repeat, slapping the sugar into her hand, grinning as I picture her saying, ‘scalpel,’ like a surgeon. 

She laughs at my tone. “Scalpel,” she teases, knowing my thoughts. As we work, we discuss the upcoming Halloween party and the costume we still need for her. The black dress I found will work as the witch costume I decided to go with, but we’re still up in the air on what her costume should be. 

“I know! We can make a cardboard cutout, and I can be riding a Hellhound.” 

“Why not a werewolf or a centaur?” I grin at the gleam of amusement in her eyes. 

“Because Hellhounds are awesome!” She pauses as she reads, still stirring the mix with one hand. “Listen to this. It’s a note in the margin,” Holly starts. “When things are low, and you are in danger, just give this a stir and depend on the anger.” She looks up at me, her eyes full of confusion. “What do you think it means?”

I shrug. “It could be anything. Maybe someone just needed a piece of paper to write something down, and the book was all they had.” 

A shape catches my eye as it rises from the pan behind her. She turns her head, and we both watch as the caramel comes out of the pan as if invisible hands are shaping it. I grasp her waist and back away, tugging her with me as the blob grows in size. There is no way it would have all fit in the saucepan, but there’s no stopping it. Heatwaves come from the form as it reaches toward the ceiling then angles down toward us. By the time it’s fully settled on the floor, it has formed four legs, and a big tail sedately waves behind it. The head lifts and splits open, showing a mouthful of sharpened sugar spike teeth. Fire boils in place of the eyes, and there is no visible nose where a dog would normally have one. It reminds me so much of a giant mastiff dog. The head is wider than my hand by far, and the torso is rounded enough to appear muscled but not fat. 

“Ph-Phaedra,” Holly whines. I keep backing until I hit the table and can’t go any further without turning us away from the shape. We both shriek as it bounds forward and licks her face, the tail now wagging wildly. It’s almost as tall as she is at the top of its head. “Good doggy,” she says cautiously. 

“‘Doggy?’” I demand, then let out my own shriek as it licks me as well. I thought it would be burning hot, but it’s actually pleasantly warm and smells deliciously like the caramel it is made from. 

“Oh, come on. You can see the obvious dog shape and the wagging tail just like I can, Fae.” She grins up at me. “Told you Hellhounds are cool.” Looking back at the caramel dog just standing there as if in wait, Holly reaches out, patting the head. “Full name Caramel, but Mel for short. How does that sound?”

Mel wags her tail at Holly as if to say she agrees and gives her another lick.

“You’d think we would be sticky after that,” Holly says after giggling. 

“Yeah,” I agree. “How do you know it’s a girl?”

“I just do.” She then asks the question that is burning inside me. “What do we do with her?” 

Note From Star:

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Reading With Star: Love Hurts by Thetta James

Disclaimer: None of the work in Reading With Star belongs to me. The author owns all right to the book. They have given me permission to share a bit of their work with you.

Book Title: Love Hurts: Pure Sin Trilogy Book I

Release Date 8/30/20

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Excerpt from Love Hurts: Pure Sin Trilogy Book I by Thetta James Copyright 2020

“I didn’t know what to think when I got the call that you were taken to the hospital. My mind was racing in all kinds of directions, and it immediately went to what happened with Mike. I felt like my heart was going to explode and I was in panic mode.” 

I reach out and cup his face, encouraging him to continue. I could feel the emotions radiating from him, and I could tell he was struggling to form words.

“When I saw you in that bed, alive and okay, I knew at that moment that what I feel for you is real and I needed to tell you I love you. I love you so fucking much that it scares me. I know this seems too soon, but the thoughts that ran through my head as I was driving to the hospital scared me even more. You have brought so much joy into my life. You’ve awakened feelings I swore to never feel for someone. It’s okay if you don’t feel the same way, but I just had to tell you.” 

Placing my fingers over his lips to stop him from talking, I do my best to process what he’s saying. He’s relaying the words fast, but I hold on to those three little words I know will change the dynamic of our relationship. Three words that will shift my world and make me open myself up to everything that love brings. Ups, downs, hurt, vulnerability, so many things, but I’m so ready to feel it all.

“Shh, baby, it’s okay because I love you too. I love you so much, Jackson.”

“Oh, yeah?” He asks, smiling sheepishly.

Laughing, I say,

“Oh, yeah.” 

No other words are spoken as he captures my mouth in a gentle kiss that seals everything that we’ve promised with three words. Closing my eyes makes me dizzy, so I watch his facial expressions as he slowly kisses me. His eyes are relaxed yet filled with so much emotion.

“I need to be inside you,” he whispers.

I reach down and open my towel and lay back on the bed. Taking me by my hips, he gently brings our bodies flush and I revel in the feel of his warmth. His eyes bore deep into my soul, telling me he wants me, he needs me, he is hungry for me. He licks across the crease of my mouth, and I open to him. Biting my lip gently, he tugs it as I melt from the heat of the pain that he scores me with. He kisses down my body, raining wet kisses over my burning flesh, and spreads me wide. My core is clenching, hungry to grasp his thickness as thoughts of him being inside me take over and all I want is to feel him touching every inch of me. A nice cool breeze fills the room, helping to ease the burn, but it’s not enough. I want him inside me, and I try to be patient as his tongue takes one long stroke up my center.

His eyes never leave my face and I feel a sense of abandonment as he takes me to that height of ecstasy that I never want to come down from. I’m falling fast as my breaths come in quick succession. The desire that this man pulls from me is unmatched, and he refuses to let me come down, allowing this orgasm to ride on an endless wave of pure pleasure. He moves up my body and enters me swiftly, easily, and with reckless abandon.

He commands my body again and we fall together into that blissful oblivion that he and I create. That special place that only he and I can dwell. Caressing my face, he whispers.

“I love you Crys.”

 “I love you too, Jackson.”

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𝗝𝗼𝗶𝗻 𝗺𝘆 𝗥𝗲𝗮𝗱𝗲𝗿 𝗚𝗿𝗼𝘂𝗽 𝗵𝗲𝗿𝗲:

Reading With Star: Perle of Love by Marie Long

Disclaimer: None of the work in Reading With Star belongs to me. The author owns all right to the book. They have given me permission to share a bit of their work with you.

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Zeke knocked on the Headmistress’s office door and let himself in. He noticed the room was still empty, and frowned. It appeared the Headmistress still hadn’t returned from her impromptu meeting. Looking toward the Headmistress’s desk, Zeke considered coming back later, instead of waiting here alone. But the last thing he needed was to invoke her wrath for not heeding her summons. After several moments, Zeke finally conceded and approached the desk. 

What sort of urgent matter could have made her run off like that? he wondered as he took a seat in one of the high-backed chairs in front of her desk.  

He scanned the room. His gaze locked on a side door that was open a crack. It was the same one that descended into the dark, narrow staircase the attendant had appeared from earlier. Curious, he rubbed his chin. He’d noticed the door to that hidden room many times, but never had he’d seen it opened. What’s down there, anyway? His heart pounded. He was venturing into an area of the Headmistress’s office he had never been.  

He approached the door, slid it all the way open, and stared into the pitch-blackness to allow his wolf sight time to adjust. Once he could see the steps clearly, he noticed they spiraled down past his line of sight. He took a deep breath, filling his lungs with the cold, humid air wrought with the mixed scents of mildew and old stone. His ears perked at the echo of several mixed voices talking and chanting below him. He puffed out his chest, allowing his wolf’s courage to calm his mind, and then began his descent. 

Zeke ran his hand along the rough stone walls as he travelled deeper into the unknown depths. A shimmer of light danced across the walls. His steps turned cautious. The darkness of the stairwell eventually opened up into a blue-lighted chamber.  

He pressed his back against the wall and peered around the edge. A large room, three times the size of the Headmistress’s office, opened in front of him. A group of purple-robed men and women stood around a large table, staring at a thick, closed tome set in the middle. The Headmistress stood at the head of the table, looking intently toward the book. Zeke focused on the book—his eyes widened as he recognized the rose image on the book’s front cover. 

His breath hitched, and a shiver ran through his body when he realized it was the enchanted tome of runes—the cause of all the trouble that happened around the school several months ago. His friend and fellow student, Perle Durand, had inadvertently obtained it from an evil sorceress. With Zeke’s help, however, they were able to contain the dark magic. 

The assistants, in ritualistic sequence, cast a variety of spells on the book. The prismatic array of colors and visual effects from the attendants’ spells were strange and unfamiliar to him. He was a shifter, and therefore didn’t follow the traditional path of magic comprised of incantations and enchantments. Frozen, he remained at the base of the stairs, watching with interest, thankful that no one seemed to be aware of his presence.  

The Headmistress uttered phrases in a language that sounded like gibberish to his ears. He had a hard time understanding the nature of his own shifter powers, much less other forms of magic. 

The Headmistress extended her hand toward the book, and it slid across the table toward her as if her hand were a magnet. The book stopped in front of her. A wave of gasps and murmurs swept through the chamber from the wary assistants. 

“At last,” the Headmistress said in a relieved voice. “I think we may have finally unlocked her secret…” She slowly placed her hand on the book.  

Reflexively, as if reacting to her touch, a bright, orange-yellow glow emanated from the book. Suddenly, beams of golden light shot in all directions from the book. Everyone ducked and scrambled away from the table. The book rose on its own accord, hovering in mid-air, the beams of light continuing to shoot everywhere about the room. 

“Look out!” a male assistant shouted as he dashed under the table. 

The Headmistress rushed behind a narrow support column as a beam of light caught the hem of her dress, searing a small hole in the purple fabric. 

Zeke stiffened. She’s in trouble! His wolf instinctively wanted to protect the Headmistress, but he was also aware of the unknown danger of the hovering book.  

He crouched low and concentrated, allowing his body to expand as he shifted into his wolf form. His transformation complete, he focused on the chaos once more with his newfound senses. He tried to analyze the light beams carefully in case they moved in a specific pattern, but they were as erratic as his own nerves. With a grunt, he bolted into the room, using the incredible speed and agility his wolf form provided to dodge and duck around the incoming beams as he made his way to the column where the Headmistress was hiding. 

The Headmistress widened her eyes. “Zeke! What are you doing? Get out of here now!” 

The pang of alarm in the Headmistress’s voice gave him pause as he panted behind the column next to her. Part of him felt obliged to obey, but his wolf empowered him to remain. He shook his head slowly. 

Protect the Headmistress at all costs. 

“I said go! That is an order!” she barked. 

His heart pounded faster. The urgency and forcefulness in her voice was enough to sway his wolf. She is the Alpha.  

He launched himself away from the column toward the stairs, almost falling as his thick paws slipped on the polished stone floor. Scrambling to keep his balance, he raced back the way he came. He was almost to the staircase when a terrible shock suddenly struck him on his tail. A flash of pain seared through him hotter than fire, cutting sharper than any knife.  

He let out a painful howl and felt his legs give way. He slid across the floor and hit the bottom step with a resounding thud. He tried to stand, but his body refused to obey his commands.  

I… I can’t move! Why can’t I move?  

His eyelids drooped as he fought to stay conscious. The screams and shouts of the attendants, the crumbling sounds of the stone walls, and the thundering of panicked footsteps echoed in his frazzled mind until he succumbed to the numbness sweeping over his senses. The world around him went black and deathly silent.  

Note From Star:

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Reading With Star: Nelo’s Wynter by Roux Cantrell

Disclaimer: None of the work in Reading With Star belongs to me. The author owns all right to the book. They have given me permission to share a bit of their work with you.


Nelo’s Wynter

The Elementals series
Book 1
Story By: Roux Cantrell
Cover design: Pretty In Ink


Wynter’s an ex-soldier for the vampire nation wanting to enjoy a well-deserved vacation.

Nelo’s a hybrid-demon assassin with a reputation as a lady’s man.

Centuries ago, they fell into like with each other and after a night of passion woke up mated.

Now Wynter’s stuck in the Paris catacombs with someone chasing her and the one person that can help her out is her long-lost mate, Nelo.

Can two overly stubborn people find common ground while running for their lives? Will a repeat of their mating night remind them how great they are together, or will they kill one another before they can find out?

exsolider #vampire #hybriddemonassassins #longlostmate #Immortals#newserieslaunchexcerpt

@copywritten by Author Roux Cantrell

Grabbing the whisky bottle and one of the discarded glasses, Wynter dropped down onto the leather sofa. The damn thing probably cost more than anything she owned. Pouring the burning liquid, she kicked back, placing her boot-clad feet onto the coffee table. She wrinkled her nose as Nelo came over to grab the bottle. She couldn’t help herself. “Do you smell that?”
Nelo knocked Wynter’s feet off his coffee table. “What?”
“Smoke and burned flesh.”
Wynter stifled a laugh as he growled, walking across the room, putting distance between them. Wasn’t her fault he refused to leave her be. He’d have to tie her to him if he wanted her to stay—and then she would just cut herself free.
“I need a shower.”
The thought of a naked Nelo had her smirking. “Go for it.” She watched him over the rim of her glass.
Did she think he’d leave her sitting alone in the living room? “Let’s go.”
Holy hell, was he asking her to shower with him? “Go where?”
“I’m not leaving you out here… alone.” To run away again.
“I’m not showering with you.” He unbuckled his belt and pulled it through, loop by loop. As it swished from its resting place, she crossed her legs, refusing to allow herself to be turned on. No matter what, she had her pride. Her dignity.
Fuck that. If he offered, she was taking it. It had been way too long, and he was the only male she could sleep with. Swallowing the whisky, Wynter let her eyes drift over Nelo’s lean, well-muscled body. His jeans hung low on his hips, showing off the V every woman loved to dream about. Pressing the glass against her lips again, Wynter thought about running her tongue down those veins. She might not have the actual experience, but she’d seen some salacious porn in her day.
The pretty blush that crept up her neck gave his mate away. Yeah, she liked the thought of showering together. “Are you sure?”
He’s nuts if he thinks I’m that easy. “Is that your way of convincing me?”
Stepping toward Wynter, he watched as she rubbed the glass against her lips, making her sexier than she already was. “You offered earlier.” Those full lips and light eyes made his blood heat up and head straight to his cock. If she looked down, she would be red.
“That I did. Maybe I changed my mind.” He prowled toward her. If he kissed her, she was done for. The belt dropped next to her on the sofa as he leaned in, bracketing her body with lean muscular arms.
Biting back a moan, Wynter tried leaning away as he nudged her head to the side. Sharp fangs scraped the vein along her neck. “Fuck it.” She reached up, shooting her hands into his hair, tangling her fingers in its length, dragging his mouth to hers. He halted the movement and looked into her eyes like he could see every single thing, telling her to make sure.
She smashed her mouth to his, wanting to know the feel of him again, even if when it was over, she would leave him behind.

Note From Star:

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