Friday, October 28, 2011

I'm Chuffed. Just Chuffed!

I’ve gotten a few nice comments about Ragnar and Juliet here and there and good ratings on the web and such (Goodreads and Amazon readers, thank you!), so I’m gonna share a really nice review. Because I'm braggy like that.

This is from Just Erotic Romance Reviews:

Juliet Lawrence, of the New York Lawrences, is a successful bounty hunter, successful enough to have decorated her ship in antiques and herself in large wardrobe of trollop-sexy clothes. Having accepted a contract from King William the Nefarious, she hotly pursues Ragnar Manscape, only to find herself deeply attracted to the alien space captain, whose crime was liberating one of King William’s enslaved concubines. As Juliet debates whether to bed her captive or turn him over for the money, King William’s staff of Bad Guys captures them both. As Ragnar helps devise an escape plan, Juliet discovers the joys of having a partner, especially one with such a talented tail, and finally finds herself in a relationship that could last a lifetime.

Ragnar and Juliet, a lovely spoof of space operas and romance, is grounded in a fine storyline, with strong, well-developed characters. Juliet is a delightfully New-York-mouthy woman with a taste for trash in clothes and one-nighters. Ragnar, on the other hand, is an alpha male with a soft heart (he let his little sister name his ship Bobo), who wants to bring her home to meet his family, after having mind-blowing sex with her. And the sex is hot! The supporting characters are nicely done, as well, particularly King William the Nefarious, whose taste in women runs toward the totally submissive dressed in Princess Leia. Ms. Woodhull’s humor avoided slapstick and had me laughing almost every page. When Juliet finally handles her commitment issues and quits running from Ragnar, I wanted to cheer. Ragnar and Juliet definitely deserves the JERR Silver Star Award. It’s delightful! This book definitely goes in my re-read stack to keep me warm this winter!

If you’re wondering what the JERR Silver Star Award is (I was), it’s this:

Silver Star: This rating is for those exceptional short books consisting of 100 pages or less. The ones the reviewer feels she won’t forget because of its exceptional quality. It engaged the senses in a way that she became the story, that she couldn’t lay it down and would return time and again. These books are the best of the best.

DAYUM! My hubby found this review and he got all choked up and proud of me over it. Thanks, JERR!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Taking Shifting to a New Dimension

Today I'd like to welcome romance author Jennifer Colgan to chat about her latest release, MARRIED TO THE MIB. It sounds awesome, so read on!


Thanks, Lucy, for inviting me here to talk about my novella!

I discovered a long time ago [in a galaxy far, far…well you get the picture] that alien shifters are HOT.

So when I sat down to write my sci-fi rom-com MARRIED TO THE MIB, I knew I wanted there to be an alien shifter involved somehow. I put out the intergalactic call for shifters, and a steady stream of amazing creatures paraded through my brain. None of them seemed quite right, though. Not until Ruben Throckmorton showed up.

Ruby is the long-suffering partner of MARRIED’s hero, Spencer Ward. While Spence is the down-to-earth, upstanding half of their dynamic duo, Ruby’s the one who’s a little bit better at riding the ragged edge of disaster. He’s got skills. Chief among them his ability to shift into his anteater form.

Sexy, am I right?

Yep. That’s right. He can shift into an anteater. Well, an alien who looks suspiciously like an anteater - enough to fool a class of pre-schoolers and a couple of crafty canines at least.

Spence may be the hero of the piece, but Ruby is the guy with the plan, the guy with the tail and the guy with the leather leash. Here he is in action:


“We’re overdressed.” Ruby’s remark, designed to draw Spence out of his emotional cesspool, received no response.

Spence adjusted his black tie and the cuffs of his jacket. He pursed his lips in concentration and followed his ex-wife’s path along a small man-made pond, around which an eclectic collection of four-legged pets and their largely oblivious owners paced off their morning constitutionals. Those humans who weren’t sipping half-caf lattes from Styrofoam cups or chatting on cell phones clutched bright white or yellow “doggie doodie” baggies in their free hands.

“We should have worn jogging suits,” Ruby whispered.

“It doesn’t matter. This is just recon. I’m not going to approach her now.”

Ruby stared sidelong at Spence. The whole point was to get the mission over with as quickly and cleanly as possible. Too much recon would just prolong Spence’s well-hidden agony. “When, then? You don’t want to draw this out any longer than you have to.”

“Soon. She’s heading around the pond. Let’s go, keep visual contact.”

Ruby scanned the park. In the golden glow of the autumn morning, their black suits would stand out like tears in the space-time continuum. They’d already gotten a curious glance from a lady walking two Irish Setters and a questioning yip from a passing Chihuahua.

“Why don’t we request telemetry on her apartment and meet her there when she’s done with her walk?”

“Because she’s not going there.”

Ruby raised a brow. Dulcie had reached the far side of the pond now and stopped to talk to a woman on skates, who led a slender platinum-brown Weimaraner by a silver chain. Her floppy-eared mutt eyed the purebred dog with visible disdain.

“And you know this because…?”

“That’s not her dog. It belongs to her friend Vivienne.”

“Oh.” Without Vivienne’s DNA, they couldn’t get telemetry on her place.

“So we have to follow her.”

“I thought that was the plan anyway.” Exasperated, Ruby initiated genetic resequencing. His ears and nose began to elongate. His forearms and legs shortened, and his clothing even transformed into a coat of coarse, mottled gray and black fur.

With his head now at the height of Spence’s knees, Ruby glanced up into his partner’s horrified face.

“What the hell are you doing? Somebody could have seen you.” Spence did a quick scan around, but their shadowy hiding place was secure for the moment. “I didn’t tell you to shift.”

Ruby lifted a four-clawed foot. “I took matters into my own…hands.” Half-Myxmerian on his father’s side, Ruben possessed the ability to shift his molecular structure from human to alien form. Myxmerians had perfected their long-tailed, quadruped form as a defense mechanism, which allowed them to hide in plain sight when the occasion called for it.

“And what is this going to do? No one’s going to believe you’re a dog.” Spence’s harsh whisper grew louder.

Ruby snorted and pawed the grass. “Of course not. This form is far more attractive than a canine but just as serviceable.”

Spence closed his eyes. “Just how is a bushy tail and a long snout serviceable in this situation?”

Ruby chuckled. With his voice somewhat compressed to fit into a slightly smaller body, the sound came out a bit too high-pitched. He tried to clear his throat, which in turn sounded like a wet slurp. “It’s not the tail and snout that are important at the moment.”

“Oh, and what is?”

“The extremely hyper-developed leg muscles.” Ruby would have grinned, but his extra long upper lip didn’t move that way. He snorted instead and took off running toward the pond.

* * * *

The sight of his four-legged, fur-covered partner loping across the manicured lawn leading to the artificial pond might have been hilarious in some alternate universe. In this one it was nothing short of a mid-air collision. Spence could have named any number of realities he’d rather have been in at the moment—most of them post-apocalyptic.

Cursing, he ran after Ruby. He should have let him chance being picked up by a roving dog catcher, if any still existed, but something propelled him from his hiding place, halfway around the pond at a dead run and right into Dulcie’s path.

When he and Ruby had left ISTA headquarters a few hours ago, he’d thought he’d had the scenario all figured out in his head. They’d find Dulcie, and she’d seem less vibrant and beautiful than Spence remembered. There’d be no spark of humor in her eyes, no lilt of laughter in her voice, nothing to touch the empty spot her absence had left in his heart. It would be easy for him to hypnotize her, take her statement about Y’Nori’s death and be on his way to a cold, sour Rangorian beer and a long, lonely night in his bunk. Case closed.

He’d managed thus far to ignore his own racing pulse and the bittersweet memory of how she’d felt nestled in his arms in the VIP stateroom the Bojzhan had given them aboard Decadence after their wedding ceremony. He’d had everything about this mission under control—except for Ruby.

On his stubby legs, the Myxmerian barreled toward the fluffy, white dog standing next to Dulcie. It took the mutt a moment to process, but once she noticed the black and gray ball of fur heading toward her at warp speed, she did what any canine in her position would do. She barked, ran around Dulcie’s slender ankles looking for cover then yanked hard on the leash, toppling Dulcie.

Now caught on the ground between a yapping dust mop and a crafty alien, Dulcie spent all of three seconds looking stunned.

Spence raced toward her, afraid she’d start to scream and work herself into an emotional state not conducive to hypnosis.

“I’m so sorry, miss. Are you all right?” Those hadn’t been the words he’d planned on saying to her when he saw her again. This mess bore no resemblance to the fantasies he’d harbored of their eyes meeting across a crowded room one day as he strolled back into her life to reclaim the love he’d been forced to give up.

Her response, however, was dead on. “Oh my God! I can’t believe it.”

Spence’s heart stopped. Did she recognize him? Maybe the mind block ISTA had used to wipe her memories hadn’t taken. He met her gaze, and his breath stilled in his lungs. “I know…it’s—”

* * * *

If you want to get to know Ruby better, look for MARRIED TO THE MIB at:
All Romance eBooks

I can guarantee you’ll never look at anteaters the same way again.

Jennifer Colgan