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In some ways, this year has gone by very slowly. In others, it has rushed by. I’m not sure I was ready for it to be December yet.

How about you?

Anyway, with the holidays right around the corner, let’s look at some excerpts from Gambler’s Folly! To begin with, let’s take a peek at the first book in the series, which gave its name to the series.

GAMBLER’S FOLLY is the first in a three book series—more to come in a while. Below is an excerpt from Chapter 1.

You can find Gambler’s Folly and the rest of the series at Amazon or at Smashwords.

And if you like merch associated with your books, check out my storefront on TeeSpring for totes, mugs, T-shirts and other items from the series and the books!

And for this weekend, the first Gambler’s Folly book will be on sale for $0.99–today through Monday morning!

Excerpt:

Trae wasn’t back yet and it was past time for dinner. Where was he? She slammed the brush down on the dressing table and dried her eyes, as anger overcame disappointment.

Wondering what to do, she heard the sound of his key card in the lock. “Where in the hell…” she began as Trae entered the room, followed by two well-built men in expensively tailored suits. “Trae, what’s going on? Who are these guys?”

“Hi, sweetheart. These men are associates of Mr. Leone. They’ve come to take you to him.”

“Take me to—Mr. Leone? The biggest mob boss on the planet?”

“Um, yeah. I kind of lost a bet. Sorry.”

“You lost a bet? What kind of bet? What have you done, Trae O’Brien?”

“Well, you won’t have to worry about the house anymore, or the car, or really anything. I lost all of it. Then, in order to get out from under that and a M1,000,000 debt, he insisted I put you on the table, as it were. Win or lose, one hand, and all my debts were gone. Just if I lost, he got you. And I lost. Sorry.”

“Sorry? Sorry?! You’re more than sorry, Trae. What the hell?” she shouted, as one of the impeccably dressed men took her arm.

“Come along, Mrs. O’Brien. Mr. Leone is waiting.”

“I’m not going anywhere with you. Get your hands off me!”

As she struggled with one man, the other one found her purse, and checked for her passport and papers. Speaking into what must have been a wrist communicator, man number two said, “We have the lady. Mr. O’Brien will be right down to sign the papers.”

“Papers? What papers, Trae?”

The older of the two men smiled and said, “The ones signing away his rights to you, love. Come along.”

“Trae? Trae!”

Downstairs, watching her husband sign away his debts, Karianna was numb. How could this even be legal? Did it matter when you were dealing with the mob?

Pushing the signed papers across the table, Trae said, “Well, that’s that I guess. You’re sure we’re good?”

“Mr. Leone was very clear about it. One hand, win or lose, all debts forgiven.”

“What about me?” Kari asked, in shock. “What am I supposed to do?”

The man in the shadows was quiet for a moment, and then said, “Go ahead and take her downstairs, to one of the special guest rooms. Mr. Leone will see her there and decide what to do with her.”

The man in the shadows was quiet for a moment, and then said, “Go ahead and take her downstairs, to one of the special guest rooms. Mr. Leone will see her there and decide what to do with her.”

Entering the elevator, one of her escorts used a pass card to select a private underground floor. From what she’d heard about the place, the lower-level suites were exclusive and outrageously expensive.

The suite they opened for her certainly bore that out. Stepping onto the lush carpet was like stepping onto a cloud. Hidden mood lighting around the perimeter of the ceiling lit the area evenly, while the trickling water in a small fountain created a gentle background sound. Live plants grew under specialized lights and the scent in the air was soothing.

“Just relax, have a drink if you wish. Mr. Leone will be here shortly,” one of the men told her. And then they were gone.

Turning back toward the door, Karianna tried the latch, just for the sake of trying. Locked. For all the creature comforts and beauty in the room, it was really just a cushy cell. But she didn’t intend to stay here any longer than she had to. Chances were good that, if she could reach the elevator, she could get back to the lobby. Usually pass cards were needed only to enter a floor, not to leave it. Now, what could she use as a weapon?

As the door opened, she tensed, ready to make her escape. Unfortunately, Mr. Leone had come prepared. The first bodyguard easily caught the floor lamp she swung at him and set it on the floor beside the door.

“Restraints,” she heard someone say. After a struggle with both bodyguards, Karianna found she was snugly restrained between two poles, clothes torn and disheveled. While she’d been looking over the room, she’d thought they were for in-room entertainment. She now saw they were equipped for hand and ankle restraints. Soft and cushioned, the restraints were nevertheless effective. Adjustable stops kept her from sliding the restraints up and down, holding her firmly in place, exactly as she was.

“Thank you, gentlemen,” she heard the voice say. It was a deep, dark, sensual voice which made her spine tingle. “We’ll be fine now.”

“Yes, Mr. Leone. Have a pleasant evening,” she heard one of the bodyguards answer. The door opened, closed, and she was alone with a man many had reason to fear.

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Who is Morgan?

She appeared for the first time in Jareth, First Lord, as one of the girls brought back from Clan Belfort. As the series progressed, I became intrigued by her story and decided to see where she’d come from and what Clan Brannach held in store for her.

She’d had a hard life before she moved to Clan Brannach and after she arrived, she was assaulted while making deliveries for her boss. She escaped being raped only because of two young men who came to her rescue.

Sure she’ll never find a happily-ever-after, she’s given up trying.

Until she meets James, who has also given up on love. But when he first sees Morgan, muddy, battered, and bloody though she was, it was love at first sight.

But his family has secrets of its own, which has scared off most of the women in his life. One woman he was dating took off running and was nearly trampled to death in the street when he gave her a glimpse of his Talent.

Can he win Morgan’s heart? And can she accept his unique gift as well?

MORGANThe Pixie and the Green Man–Esperance Book 3

Excerpt:

“Jamie, you’re up early this morning,” his dad called out as he strode down the path. “Got plans with a dark-haired pixie?”

“Sort of. Can I talk to you for a minute?”

Leaning on the rail fence in front of his parents’ house, he told his father what had happened the previous evening.

“I don’t see how you could have done differently, son,” his father said. “If you’re serious about her, she’ll have to know sooner or later.”

“But how can I know when to bring it up? I thought Gwen…”

“Don’t look back, James,” his father said seriously. “I was never sure about Gwen. I know you loved her and hoped things would work out, but that is all in the past.”

“I’m trying to look forward, Dad. But I couldn’t live with myself if I chased Morgan away.”

“Where are you going today?” his father asked.

“For a hike up the stream. It’s a nice warm day and it should be beautiful.”

“The stream isn’t far from the forest. Take her over and introduce her. See what the forest has to say.”

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