Monday, August 25, 2014

J.D. Brown - Interview and Giveaway - A Paranormal Urban Fantasy author

Hello everyone – got a great treat for this week. J.D. Brown, author of the Ema Marx series (Paranormal-Urban Fantasy Romance) has written a prequel with Leena and Jalmari’s beginnings in Athena’s Oracle – A Heirloom Vampyres Novella.

Not erotic romance, but sensual and sexy, and most definitely a love story, thriller, and page turner *grins* J.D. is offering a giveaway also – details below. Before we get to the interview questions, here’s a bit about my good friend and amazing author, J.D. Brown…

She knows that vampires exist because she’s dating one and no, he doesn’t sparkle. Unfortunately, he’s not immortal either (or maybe her standards are too low). A magnet for subcultures and weirdness, J.D. was that socially awkward girl with more fictional friends than real ones. As a child battling a hearing loss and a medical condition with no name, J.D. found comfort in books where strong women always saved the day and got the guy. An obsession with Charmed, Sabrina the Teenage Witch and Buffy the Vampire Slayer led J.D. to believe that her mutated chromosome made her something more, not something less. Thus her stubborn flare to persevere was born.

A lover of fine cuisine, coffee, and shoes, J.D. never understood why shoe stores don’t serve Starbucks and soufflé. She resides in Wisconsin were she writes urban fantasy—aka vampires for adults—and has political debates with her dogs. She loves to hear from fans and is active on

Okay, J.D. let’s get on with sharing you and your story, Athena’s Oracle 

Please tell us how the idea came to you for Athena’s Oracle. Please include all the fun details.

It’s difficult to talk about without ruining the story for those who haven’t read Dark Heirloom yet, but Athena’s Oracle is the prequel to Dark Heirloom. It takes place in ancient Greece, thousands of years before the main character of Dark Heirloom, Ema Marx, is even born. I really wanted to tell the story of how Jalmari and Leena (two characters who are portrayed as ‘bad guys’ in Dark Heirloom) met and fell in love. Jalmari is such a complicated character. Like I said, in Dark Heirloom, he comes across as the villain, but it’s clear he wasn’t always that way. He and Leena have a complicated history, but we don’t get to see much of it through Ema’s eyes. I love Jalmari and Leena, and I really wanted to let my readers get to know them the way I know them, to see that there is good in these ‘villains’. There is more to them than evil for the sake of evil. Plus, like any good writer, I’ve factored it all in to events that will take place later in the series. I think my fans will appreciate that. :P

What drives, motivates, and/or inspires Jalmari and Leena in this book?

Athena’s Oracle begins with the death of Jalmari’s father, which brings about the curse that carries through the rest of the series. You see, Daddy was a master alchemist and a tyrant who liked to cheat death. He concocted a spell long ago, incase his physical body was ever extinguished, that would allow his essence (or soul, if you will) to hitch a ride in his son’s body. Not wanting to live possessed for the rest of his life, Jalmari travels to Greece in search of another alchemist who can undo this curse.  That’s how he ends up meeting Leena.

Leena is the daughter of a master alchemist in Athens, and has spent her whole life training to be the oracle of Athena; a job she doesn’t want. She’ll do just about anything to free herself of this burden, including using her father’s spell book to concoct a chancy love hex…

Can you tell us about the abilities of Leena? How do they help OR hinder?

Leena has a very special gift: she can hear people’s thoughts. This allows her to know when Jalmari is near, even when he is invisible. It is also the reason why she is set on the path of becoming an oracle; the people of Athens believe she is a demi-goddess. This is both annoying and fascinating to Jalmari. All my vampires have powers, but none of them are telepaths. It’s a challenge for him to actually converse with cattle…er, I mean humans…as if they were his equals. ;-)

Why this location? Anything in particular in real-life that made you select it?

It’s where Leena is from, and where Jalmari believes his father learned alchemy.

Is Athena’s Oracle included in a series? If so, what series and can you give us titles and a tagline for other books in this series?

Athena’s Oracle is the prequel to the Ema Marx series. Though Athena’s Oracle can be read independently at any point in the series, it is best read before book three, Dark Becoming. With that in mind, here is the full list of the books so far:

Dark Heirloom (book 1):  She wasn’t bitten. She’s not undead. So how did Ema Marx become a vampire?

Dark Liaison (book 2): Being a Romani-Vampyre with an ancestor who wants you dead isn’t normal. Neither is this sequel.

Athena’s Oracle (prequel): Her love was doomed from the start.

Dark Becoming (book 3 – available winter 2014/2015): Embracing motherhood and saving the world—all in a day’s work for Ema Marx.

Can you share anything about the vampires/vampyres in the story? What’s unique about them?

Anyone who’s read Dark Heirloom knows how different my vampyres are from the normal undead sparkly trope, but in Athena’s Oracle we get an up-close-and personal look at two very different clans: Jalmari’s home-clan in Scandinavia, and the Vyrkolakan clan in Greece. The interesting thing about Greek vampire lore, their vampires (called vrykolakas) had both vampire and werewolf traits. So, naturally, my Greek vampires can also shapeshift into wolves.

Which scene was your favorite to write? Can you share a little of it?

This is a scene from Jalmari’s point of view, one of the rare times we get to seen him act gentle. J

I pulled my lips between my teeth and scanned her from pretty face to tiny polished toe. The folds of her loose garment drove me insane. I wanted to shred them. To see if the skin underneath glowed with sunshine the way her arms and face did. Leena was as close to the sun as I’d ever get.

And just as dangerous.

The thought sent a shiver down my spine. Humans were never a danger to vampyres. We’d have to let them hurt us, and what sane vampyre would want to do that?

I did. With Leena. I wanted to let her wreck me.

I stood, staring like an oaf, consumed with my own foolish fantasy. She stared back, with a very different idea in mind, no doubt. She practically dissected me with her eyes, and not in the sultry way Shea sometimes did. No, my little oracle’s fascination stemmed purely from the innate need to study that which hunted her. It was a survival mechanism, nothing more. After all, while a vampyre may love a fruit fly, the fruit fly would surely never be capable of such a concept. I let my essence go, preparing to phase.

“Wait.” She reached out, and her hand went through my phantom chest. I was still visible to her, but only thinly, and the sensation, like a tsunami of heat, punched my heart and rippled outward, scorching the rest of my loosely gathered body.

It was a heavenly feeling, not unlike when I had phased us both and carried her home the night before, when my essence had enveloped hers. I closed my eyes and rejoiced in the waves of her heat as her hand lingered.

“Does-does it hurt?” she asked.

“No.” Gods, no.

“How-how are you able to do that?”

“It’s a power unique to my clan.”

“It’s beautiful,” she said. “And extremely convenient.”

I opened my eyes, a smile tugging my lips. “Would you care for a ride home?”

She pulled her hand back, slowly. Not frightened, just uncertain. Her bright brown eyes searched mine, and she tilted her head slightly. “Yes.”

I lifted a wispy half-phased hand toward her. She sucked in a breath, held it, and then reached out and laced her fingers with mine.

I phased her slowly this time, letting her experience the full sensation. Her hand shimmered and then broke apart, bit by tiny bit, like bees emerging from a hive. She watched in awe as my power climbed her arm, to her elbow, bicep, shoulder, collar bone, and then down her chest and across her torso. She gasped as the sensation reached her insides, rendering her organs useless. Soon she would have no need for breath as her lungs became one with the atmosphere.

“Do not panic,” I said. “It will feel like drowning, but you are not. You won’t need to breathe. Your blood will not need to circulate. It will be uncomfortable, but remember that it is swift and over in seconds. I won’t let any harm come to you during that time.”

Her gaze locked on my mine and a final breath trembled from her lips. “I know. I trust you.”

What are you working on now?

I’m working on a short story/novella for an anthology, which will feature a minor character from Dark Liaison. After that, I will work on book four, Dark Ascension, among many other projects that are sitting on the backburner…

Where can we find you? List all of your links.

I’m all over the web, though the best place is my Facebook page or my website. I love to hear from readers, so please don’t be shy! Here are my links:

·        Website
·        Facebook
·        Twitter
·        YouTube Channel
·        Amazon Profile
·        GoodReads Profile

Quickie Quiz
          Getting to know J.D. Brown

2 Things you do to relax: Hot bath and a good book!

Cat or Dog or other: Though I like cats, I have to go with dogs. I have two Pomeranians.

Breakfast drink: Coffee!!!

Favorite season ~ why: Fall. It’s not too hot or too cold, I love watching the leaves change color and fall, I love the smell, and I love Halloween.

Favorite Author: Right now, it’s Cassandra Clare.

Picnic or 5 star restaurant: I really like picnics, but I HATE bugs, so I’ll go with the 5 star restaurant. :P

Give Away Opportunity: )
J.D. is offering an ebook copy of Athena’s Oracle – one for three lucky winners. To be entered into the drawing you must leave a comment or question for J.D. along with your email address – the drawing will take place on Friday 8/29 any time after noon EST: ) J.D. will choose the winner/s and announce it in the comments of the blog post as well as on her Facebook page.    Take a moment to enter – it’s an excellent read…a real page-turner: )

Athena's Oracle - An Heirloom Vampyres Novella

Blurb: Leena’s ‘gift of sight’ secures her place as the next great oracle of Athena. Instead of being groomed for wifehood like other girls, Leena spends her days within the walls of the Acropolis, shuffled around by the clergy and doomed to be a virgin forever. Before her ascension, Leena decides to take matters into her own hands. With the help of her father’s book of alchemy, she casts an incantation calling forth her own personal hero. But when that hero turns out to be a rogue vampyre prince with a haunted past, Leena begins to question if her feelings for him are the work of divine intervention, or a love spell gone horribly wrong.

Athena’s Oracle is a prequel to the novels Dark Heirloom and Dark Liaison, also by J.D. Brown. Set in 4th century B.C.E., Athena’s Oracle chronicles the romance between Leena and Jalmari during the very early trials of their immortal lives.

Book ReviewAthena’s Oracle - An Heirloom Vampyres Novella
Author: J.D. Brown
Genre: Paranormal-Urban Fantasy Romance Novella

First Line: I followed the scent of blood here.

Jalmari, a vampyre and eldest son in line for kingship, faces his father and mother’s death before he’s ready to play king. Something happens with his merciless, evil father’s life essence – it takes residence inside Jalmari.

Now he’s in search of a way to rid the unnatural parasite and finds an Oracle, Leena, a lovely psychically gifted human.

No denying the sparks, but the best part of their story is the length of time they both are in denial of that very inevitable soul calling.

Ms. Brown writes crisp, clear scenes, the kind that kept me turning pages – each one leading to the next in a steady flow of visuals and emotions that took me on an amazing escape into the paranormal lives of Jalmari and Leena.

This is actually a prequel of Ms. Brown’s Ema Marx series – it gives life to Leena and a deeper understanding of who she and Jalmari were before Emma came into the picture. Leena is fresh, young, naive and yet truly wise, besides being gifted. Jalmari gets way more than he bargained for with her…and together they bring an honest love to light.

If you like paranormal-urban fantasy, a bit of a thriller, and romance, you’ll enjoy this one and most likely want to read more about the Heirloom Vampyres in her Ema Marx seriesDark Heirloom; Dark Liaison; and coming soon Dark Becoming.

A highly recommended story.

Kay Dee Royal

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Saturday, August 23, 2014

Guest Post and Giveaway - Beyond Ménage by Lisabet Sarai

You want to know how it will be,
Me and him, or you and me.
You both stand there, long hair flowing
Eyes alive, your minds still growing
Saying to me
"What can we do now that we both love you?"
I love you too.
I don't really see,
Why can't we go on as three?

“Triad” by David Crosby as sung by Grace Slick of Jefferson Airplane
“Crown of Creation”, 1968

I've always loved that song, especially Grace Slick's rendition. Her husky contralto voice shimmers with sensuality as she invites her two lovers to consider the possibility of a three-way relationship. I recently read that the Byrds declined to record the song because they viewed its subject, a ménage à trois, to be too controversial. In fact, the topic of this song is beyond ménage, which to me carries the implications of a one-time encounter. This is a song about polyamory – a long-term, committed, sexual and emotional relationship involving more than two people.

Polyamory appealed to me before I ever knew the word. I grew up in the late sixties and early seventies, the era of communes and free love. I read Stranger in a Strange Land in my teens and recognized that Valentine Michael Smith and his “water brothers” had multi-way sexual relationships without jealousy. I found the notion both intensely exciting and inherently reasonable.

My new novel The Ingredients of Bliss  flirts with polyamory. My heroine Emily thinks she loves both Harry and Etienne. She ends up sexually involved with both and considers whether such a triangle could be stable over the long run.

Polyamory usually falls apart because of jealousy, and the ultimate source of jealousy is self-doubt. You're worried that your partner's interest in a third person is in fact a sign of your inadequacy.  You're not sexy enough, smart enough, educated enough, whatever, to hold his or her interest. A successful polyamorous relationship requires all the people involved to trust not only each other, but themselves. Each one needs to feel worthy of love.

However, in The Ingredients of Bliss, Emily's two lovers are willing to share her. Jealousy doesn't seem to be an issue. It's Emily's lack of clarity about her own feelings that threatens the triad.

And does the three-way relationship endure? You'll have to read the book to find out!

The Ingredients of Bliss
By Lisabet Sarai
Contemporary BDSM ménage
Totally Bound, 2014


One sexy French chef. One kinky American TV producer. One ambitious Chinese gal who thinks she wants them both. The ingredients of bliss? Or a recipe for disaster?

Accomplished cook Mei Lee “Emily” Wong knows exactly what she wants—her own show on the Tastes of France food channel. But life is full of complications. First, her deceptively nerdy producer, Harry Sanborne, initiates Emily into the delights of submission. Then her boss, legendary chef Etienne Duvalier, begs her to dominate him. Emily just can’t resist—especially when Harry orders her to explore her inner mistress. Suave and sexy Etienne will do whatever she asks—in the bedroom if not in the kitchen. And Harry, her lovingly diabolical Dom, adores pushing Emily’s limits.

When the network sends the trio to France to shoot a series of cooking shows on location, Emily knows her career is on the upswing. Her plans fall apart in Marseille as a Hong Kong drug syndicate kidnaps both Etienne and Harry. The Iron Hammer Triad mistakes Etienne for notorious gangster Jean Le Requin, who has stolen their drug shipment, worth millions. Emily realizes she must find the real Le Requin, retrieve the purloined dope, and bargain it for Harry’s and Etienne’s lives. The secret she’s been keeping from Harry might prove useful. Still, what chance does one woman whose knife skills are limited to chopping vegetables, have against the ruthless cruelty of two criminal organizations?

Get your copy today! 

The special VIP edition of The Ingredients of Bliss is now available from Totally Bound. This version contains a sizzling bonus chapter not available from other retailers. Totally Bound has the most advanced book selling site of any independent publisher on the web, with new One-Click ordering and direct delivery to all e-reader platforms.

Blog Tour Prizes

First prize: $30 gift certificate to Sur La Table (
Second prize: $20 gift certificate to Whole Foods Market (
Third prize: Three-pack of ebooks from my back list, including a copy of Her Secret Ingredient, the prequel to The Ingredients of Bliss.

I'll also be giving a PDF copy of my own original cookbook, Recipes from an International Kitchen, to everyone who leaves a comment. AND I have a bonus $10 Totally Bound gift certificate for the tour host who gets the most reader comments.

To enter, simply leave a comment that includes your email address. You can enter once for each spot in the tour. For the full tour schedule, go to:

About the Author: Lisabet Sarai

I started both writing and cooking at an early age, and I've continued to indulge both passions as I've matured. Usually I'm an improvisational cook; I'm not all that fond of following recipes, and when I do, I almost always introduce my own variations. My philosophy tends to be the more spice, the better.

You could say the same about my writing. Since the release of my debut novel Raw Silk in 1999, I've published lots of erotica and erotic romance in almost every sub-genre– more than fifty single author titles, plus dozens of short stories in various erotic anthologies, including the Lambda winner Where the Girls Are and the IPPIE Best Erotic Book of 2011, Carnal Machines. My gay scifi erotic romance Quarantine won a Rainbow Awards 2012 Honorable Mention.

I have more degrees than anyone would ever need, from prestigious educational institutions who would no doubt be deeply embarrassed by my chosen genre. Widely traveled but still with a long bucket list of places to go, I currently live in Southeast Asia with my indulgent husband and two exceptional felines, where I pursue an alternative career that is completely unrelated to my creative writing.

The Ingredients of Bliss

By Lisabet Sarai

R-rated Excerpt

 “So after three months with you, I’m getting used to the idea that I’m sexually submissive. Then I find myself getting turned on when I order Etienne around. What’s going on? I don’t know whether I’m really a top, just pretending to be submissive, or really a bottom who happens to like the idea of dominating her boss.”

Harry leaned in for a fruit-flavored kiss. Meanwhile, he kneaded my breasts like bread dough, further leavening my arousal. I flung my arms around his neck and pulled him closer, grateful for the moment to be unbound so that I could run my palms over his smooth shoulders and down his solid back. His mouth swept me back into a state of dizzying lust. By the time he released me, I’d almost forgotten what we’d been discussing.

“You worry too much, love.” Harry ran his fingers through his tangled locks then stretched out on the bed next to me. “Why not just express your desires, wherever they lead you?”

“You know the way I am, Harry. I need to understand. I like to be in control of myself and the situation.”

With sudden strength, he caught my wrists in one of his big hands and dragged my arms over my head. Would he bind me again? Did I want him to? Did it matter?

He straddled my hips and settled his butt on my pelvis. His half-hard penis bobbed against my abdomen. “You’re not in control when you’re with me, and you seem to like that just fine.” Still grasping my wrists, he bent to lick along my neck to the hollow of my throat.

As I relaxed into the sensations, he popped up to snag my earlobe with his teeth.

“Ow! Harry!”

The sting dwindled when he nuzzled the sensitive spot just below my ear. As I’m sure he expected, my clit twitched in response. I arched up, trying to grind my pelvis against his bum. He raised himself to a half-kneel, breaking the contact between our skin, while still holding me more or less immobilized. His cock was now fully engorged. Barely a foot from my hungry mouth, it wept pre-cum onto my chest. I whimpered and struggled against his inexorable grip. I really didn’t want to talk anymore. I just wanted him to fuck me. Again.

My Master had other ideas, though.

SPECIAL NOTE: If you like this post, please consider spreading and sharing through your favorite social network J

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