Turquoise Morning Press! And it has been quite an amazing week, indeed.
My blog tour has just begun, with being interviewed at both Deanna Jewel's blog and Marissa's Sizzling Hot Reviews. Next week, I will be guest blogging at The Naked Hero and the following week I will be the spotlight author at Write Life of Andrea & Corrina: Chicks of Characterization.
What has also made this week spactacular, is that Ræliksen just received 5 Blue Ribbons from Romance Junkies! Here's what they said about it:
RAELIKSEN, the first book in author Renee Vincent’s EMERALD ISLE trilogy, is a fast-paced, action-packed historical romance, which Ms. Vincent brings to life right before your eyes. Enriched with vivid descriptions, well-drawn complex characters, an exhilarating plot, humor, plot twists, danger and sizzling romance, this story is realistic, historically accurate and unforgettable; a story you will remember long after the last page is read. I enjoyed this story and look forward to reading the sequel, MAC LIAM, which comes out in December. I highly recommend RAELIKSEN to anyone looking for a terrific read.
To read more of the review from Romance Junkies, go HERE.
Now, while I've had an amazing time spreading the word about my work, this release week would not be right without a little excerpt. I hope you enjoy it!
Mara already started feeling the warmth of the wood and stone room soak through her, grateful for the oddity of the Norse’s bathing habits as they had put a stagnant, sweltering atmosphere to good use.
Unable to leave her kiss, Dægan whipped his sodden cloak across the room and removed his boots and kirtle, heavy, too, with rain, dropping them carelessly on the bench behind him. The slapping collapse of his wet garment seemed to slow his wild spontaneity to an attentive act of seduction. The glow of the amber flame, in the corner of the room softened the rigid bones of his face, but it did nothing to ease the callousness of his smile as he circled her.
Her braid, he moved to the side and breathed in carefully the smell of her body, the way the oils from yesterday’s bath harmoniously mixed with the nostalgia of the Erin rain. His breath came soft and hot behind her ear, while his hands snaked tenderly around her throat and down below her chin to undo the two brooches at her chest.
Without her realizing, he had released the jeweled clasp and chain, and let the drenched fine cloak fall heavily to the ground, and then he went to work, undoing the laces of her dress. He was talented with his hands, being able to trace the thin vertical line of her spine that connected her slender neck to her finely widened hips with one, while stripping her from her gown with the other, letting it too, fall to the floor.
He slowly turned her around to face him, not shy in dropping his eyes to her glistening chest. There was another smile on his face, one of kinder birth than before, as he intimately seemed to memorize each curve of her blushing body.
Likewise, Mara let her eyes plummet to his waist, seeing his arousal as visible as a winter moon. But her innocent glance must have become an inseparable stare, for he stepped closer, asking, “Do I frighten you?”
Mara lugged her eyes from his midriff to his face. “Nay, Dægan…”
Her voice trailed as he slowly neared her face, eye to eye, mouth to mouth, until suddenly his lips pressed so gingerly against hers, endearing at first, then greedily as the kiss lengthened. He coiled his arm around her back as his other hand slid over the silken skin of her buttocks, pulling her close enough to nestle his hardened body against the soft of hers.
Dægan fell away from her lips. “May I?”
Mara lifted her brows in wonder. “May you what?”
Without taking his eyes from her, he dragged a bucket of water across the floor with his foot. “May I show you how sufficient a few buckets of water can be?”
Mara hesitated at the thought of him bathing her. It was quite a personal thing to bathe another, more so between lovers, and how difficult it would be to stand there and let it happen. “Dægan…”
He dropped to his knees, sliding his hands down the back of her legs, tarrying around her thighs. “Please?”
A nervous smile crept in slowly. “You make it very hard for me to forbid you of anything.”
Dægan’s reaction to those words nearly sent her heart to slam out of beat as his eyes befit well the scoundrel smile he flashed in response. Before she could even think to change her mind, he dunked the soap into the bucket and lifted her foot to his knee, rubbing her calf and shins with the bubbly lather. After cleaning her entire right leg, he wasted no time in doing the left, and then stood to lather her stomach, breasts and arms, taking great care to be gentle.
And overly thorough.
Nervously, Mara lifted her chin as he crept up her neck and around her shoulders, finding it amazingly difficult to look him in the eye, for having a man actually cleaning and caressing every part of her body without a cause for shame was more than she expected this night. Every sweep and slippery stroke of his hands coerced a desire low in her stomach, an aching that consumed her every thought. She closed her eyes, following the enjoyable play of his hands as he left no part of her untouched.
All too soon, she found him pressed against her soapy body, whisking her near-orgasmic daydream away with one wolfish smile.
Mara couldn’t breathe, but the lack of oxygen hardly inhibited her mind from inventing an excuse. “Have you not already had your bath this evening?”
“Not by the pleasure of your hands.”
Dægan gathered them, along with the soap, and placed them on his chest. “Come now, love. Touch me.”