Sunday, January 28, 2018

Week at a Glance: 1/22/18 - 1/28/18

Sunday's Safe Word Shelf: His Personal Assistant by LJ Harris

Title: His Personal Assistant
Author: LJ Harris
Series: Men of New York #1
Genre: M/M Romance
Release Date: January 26, 2018
Editor: RE Hargrave
Cover Design: The Graphics Shed
At the tender age of twenty-one, Kade Hutchins is at a crossroads, having endured enough hardship to last a thousand lifetimes. With money tight and career at a standstill, he's running out of time and options. The day he applies for a job that isn't exactly in his field of expertise and meets his new boss, Mr. Preston, is the day his fate is changed irrecoverably.

Luke Preston is the kind of man others envy. Rich, successful and unattached, his no-nonsense, ‘take no prisoners attitude’ has made him one of the highest profile litigators in Manhattan. He’s also a man with secrets. Secrets he wants kept under wraps since tragedy rocked his privileged existence to the core. When Kade, a man some fifteen years his junior steps foot inside his office, Luke wonders if his heart will survive.

When life threw Kade Hutchins endless curveballs he found himself with not many choices so when his best friend found a job opportunity he had to go for the interview.  What he found was a man who may not be the nicest but was willing to give him a chance so he took it.  Luke Preston had everything to the outsider's eye but he had his own demons inside.  When Kade comes in for the job of personal assistant, neither man had any idea how their lives were about to change.  Will they be open to what's before them?

Who doesn't love a good rich man/poor man trope?  Okay some might not love it but I do, there's a bit of Cinderella feeling to it, not in the way that one saves the other but opening yourself to what's beyond your four walls and finding happiness there.  Now having said that, His Personal Assistant is not your typical fairy tale.  Oh no, it is definitely not a fairy tale but there is most certainly happiness out there if Kade and Luke let themselves find it.

Now about the characters.  Kade is an absolute doll.  He's not perfect, he has his flaws but his heart is so big that you just want to wrap him in bubblewrap and keep him safe.  Luke on the other hand, well he's not a bad guy by any means, especially after you learn some of his history but I did spend a good share of the book wanting to smack him upside the head to make him see what was really in front of him.  Together they really are perfect together because they offset the other, they make each other think(even if Luke is a little slow to do so).

His Personal Assistant is a wonderful love story with characters that make you scream, cry, and laugh all at the same time occasionally.  For me, this story by LJ Harris warmed my heart even as I wanted to throttle Luke and cuddle Kade.  I highly recommend this lovely story and I can't wait to see where the author takes this new series, will we see characters from Personal resurface or will it be a whole new cast with New York being the only returning character?  Either way, I look forward to reading the next installment.


Brushing an errant piece of fluff off my shoulder, I straightened the hem of my shirt and took a deep breath. Not that it did much good. By the time the elevator doors opened on the tenth floor, my nerves were beyond frazzled. With less than a minute to spare, I stepped inside the plush, modern offices.

A striking woman sitting behind a large reception desk greeted me, looking most business-like. What didn’t make sense was the way she seemed ready to pounce the second she saw me. I was surprised she didn’t fall flat on her face, considering she wore a pencil-thin black skirt and high-heeled shoes and was on her feet and running toward me like a crazy person.

“Thank God you’re here!”

“Um, what?” I took a wary step backward. She was kinda scary.

“Please tell me you’re Kade Hutchins.”

“Oh. Yes, I am.”

She held out her hand and when I took it in mine, I was impressed by her firm, assured grip. “You have no idea how relieved I am to see you.”

“Uh, thanks?” The warm smile she gave in response made her round, hazel eyes sparkle. Her hospitable attitude made me feel at ease in an instant, and I couldn’t help but grin back.

“The name’s Kimberly O'Connell. I’m the paralegal around here.”

“It’s nice to meet you, Ms. O’Connell.”

“Oh, please, I insist you call me Kimberly.”


Releasing her hold on me, she pointed a manicured finger at the closed office door located behind the desk. “Come on, Kade. Let’s get you in to see His Highness.” Covering her mouth, she giggled.

“Who?” I stopped myself from joining in, but it wasn’t easy. She had an infectious laugh.

“Luke Preston. The ass you spoke to on the phone.”

“Oh.” I didn’t know whether it was appropriate to agree with her or not, but decided it would be best to err on the side of caution.

“Sorry about him, by the way.” Kimberly knocked, before lowering her voice to a faint whisper, and adding, “I had no idea he was going to answer the phone when I went to make his coffee. He usually lets the machine pick up, but I didn’t think to switch it on since I was only going to be gone a few minutes.”

The moment I let out a nervous chuckle, the door to Luke Preston’s office flew open.

Tall and broad-shouldered, the strong jaw, high cheekbones, and dark brown hair slicked back so not a lock was out of place, coupled with the way his body filled out that navy suit, made Luke Preston look more like a model than a lawyer. My guess was that he was in his mid-thirties, but holy shit, did he wear it well. Startling emerald eyes fringed by long, dark lashes stared at me with such intensity that, for a split second, I forgot to breathe. His sharp features were softened by flawless, pale skin and full lips so plush, I wondered what they would feel like pressed against my own. In that briefest of moments, I knew I was in trouble as my head began waging a war with my heart so fierce, I didn’t know whether to pull him in for a kiss or run for my life.

All I could do was wait for him to say something… anything to break the tension.

Author Bio:
L.J. HARRIS is a mother, wife, an introvert and author. Her family is her life, her soul, and the very reason she gets out of bed every day. Coming a close second is her writing.

She discovered a passion for putting pen to paper in her later years, jotting down poems in birthday cards for family members.

It was then a spark was lit, and ever since, she hasn’t been unable to switch off the urge to share her stories.

L.J. Harris discovered that as much as experiencing pain, loss and betrayal can be devastating, capturing the feelings of anguish and loss that some of her characters have had to endure without firsthand knowledge would have proved difficult.

L.J. has been previously published and has shared several online stories and looks forward to continuing to share her work.


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Release Tour: The Demon Deliverance by Victoria Danann

Title: The Demon Deliverance
Author: Victoria Danann
Series: Knights of Black Swan #12
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Release Date: January 27, 2018

If you force a demon to agree to a deal under duress, you will live to regret it.

New York Times bestselling author, Victoria Danann, adds a long-awaited book to the Knights of Black Swan saga featuring everybody's favorite demon. 😈

Two and a half centuries ago Sixt had been a young witch with little control. In a fit of jealousy, she’d cursed the demon with an addiction spell. She thought better of it shortly thereafter, but couldn’t find him to take it back. She did something unforgivable, but now she wants forgiveness anyway.

Deliverance had been a slave to sex for so long he could barely remember life before. When he learned the compulsion that was a never ending itch was an addiction hex, he was elated because hexes can be withdrawn by the witch who casts them. But giddiness was cut short when he learned the price he’d have to pay to have the curse reversed.

Knights of Black Swan has been voted BEST PARANORMAL ROMANCE SERIES every year for the past four years in a row. Reviewers’ Choice Awards, The Paranormal Romance Guild.

She was waiting in the hallway when the elevator doors opened and threw herself into his arms when he stepped off, making him take a stumbling step back and wish he’d come to see her even sooner.

As they stepped inside her penthouse, Hans looked at Deliverance with curiosity.

Sixt said, “This is my brother…”

“Harm.” He stuck his hand out. 

Deliverance hesitated for a minute before deciding that he didn’t want to punish Sixt through her brother. He shook hands. 

Sixt’s eyes had widened when her brother had announced his name was ‘Harm’. For obvious reasons, the principal credo of witches was keep a low profile. In answer to the claim that ‘nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition’, witches would say it’s always on their mind. 

With his good looks and show-stopping smile, keeping a low profile was a challenge for Hans to begin with. But the addition of a name like ‘Harm’ was, well, curious. 

“Harm? Really?” she asked.

He shrugged. “It’s a new age.”

She shook her head. “You’re wrong, brother. The outer trappings are new.” She waved her hand at the view out the window. “Skyscrapers, drones, internet, cars that drive themselves. Da. Da. Da. People are just the same.”

He flashed a blinding grin. “Good thing we aren’t people.”

Deliverance looked at Harm like he was an infectious viral bacteria rapidly multiplying. And he was definitely not interested in family reunions. “May I be excused?” he asked, words dripping with venom.

Sixt sighed and waved her hand. Deliverance disappeared.

“Am I interrupting something?” Harm looked at Sixt as if expecting an explanation. 

“As a matter of fact, now is probably not the best time.”

Recognition lit up Harm’s face. “Hold. The. Newsflash. That’s not that demon you were pining for…” The way Sixt jerked her chin up and fixed him with a glare caused him to rethink finishing that sentence. “Okay, then. Your business.”

“That’s right. Just like I don’t meddle in your business. But for the record, I was never pining for the demon. I just had unfinished business with him.”

“Oh. Right.” His tone changed. “You worried about being hunted?”


“Why? Looks like you’re…” He looked around at the penthouse office. “Fortified.”

“And connected to judges, congressmen, even movie makers.”


She canted her head. “Cultures are shaped by their stories. Right? You know this.” She motioned to walk with her toward the kitchen. “I like movies that make witches comical, like Bewitched, or sympathetic, like Nanny McFee.”

His lips twitched. “Not a Blair Witch fan?”

“Please. I had to pay those little fuckers three fortunes to say it was all a hoax.” 

“So this is what it’s come to? Instead of using your talents to get what you want, you bribe kids with cameras?”

“Whatever works.”

He nodded. “Who am I to judge?”

She smiled. “As I remember, back in the day, you rained down some major judgment on witch persecution.”

He smiled. “I still keep track of their descendants and make sure there’re never more than one or two alive.”

“Sins of the great grandfathers sixteen times over? Maybe it’s time to let that go.”

He laughed. “Hmmm. Maybe. I’ll bet they spend their lives wondering why they can’t ‘catch a break’.” He made air quotes when he spoke the phrase ‘catch a break’. ”Maybe they don’t know why they’re being punished.” He shrugged. “But it’s entertaining for me.”

“So where’ve you been the past…” She stopped to try to remember the last time she’d heard from her brother. “Fifty years?”

He pursed his lips. “More or less, I guess. Last time I saw you was San Francisco. 1969.” He waved at the penthouse. “So you’re trying on empire. I read all about WC6.”

“Keeps me busy.”

“Distracted, you mean. It keeps you distracted. Not busy.”

“What’s the difference?”

Instead of answering, he said, “And you think you’ve insulated yourself with so much power that you’re safe from humans with torches and pitchforks?”

She sighed deeply, looked out the window for a time, then turned back. “Hide in plain sight. If somebody wants to hunt me, well, I have enough money to charter a shuttle to the moon if I want to. Enough to buy an army of mercenaries.”

He smiled. “Remember the healing potions. Our parents sold them for just enough to get by?”

She locked gazes with Harm. “Of course I remember.”

“Makes more sense to take their money and let them die.”

“I wouldn’t put it like that.”

“No? How would you put it?”

“The enterprises I control aren’t evil, Harm. They’re just successful. I help a lot of people who are good money managers enjoy their retirement.”

He laughed. “That’s what you tell yourself?” 

“I just play the game…”

“That was set up by nut job, insecure little men whose insatiable desire for more money is a cry for help. Or mother’s milk. Usually hoarding syndrome.”
“Is there a point on the horizon? Have you spent the last fifty years meditating on the Tibetan Plateau? And now you think you’re a German warlock version of Yoda?”

He laughed. “Hardly. I’ve pretty much done the same as you. Just more quietly. If we pooled our resources, we could probably buy a country big enough to get a front row seat at the U.N.” 

She raised an eyebrow. “No interest in politics. Other than the protection racquet they offer. Thanks just the same.”

“Don’t get me wrong. I don’t care if you take advantage of humans. After everything they’ve done to us.” He trailed off then asked abruptly. “You have any friends?” She scowled. “Right. Same here.” He poured himself a bourbon remembering how their parents had instructed them to go their separate ways and not make friends with other witches. Separation was key to safety. “How about love? What’s with the ‘may I be excused’?”

“My business,” she reminded him.

He saw by the tortured look on her face that he’d hit a nerve dead center. 

“Ah. The demon. What’s his name?”

“Deliverance,” she said quietly. “Why are you here, Hans?”

“Harm. Can’t you guess? I’m lonely. And it satisfies to the core to talk to somebody who knows who I really am.” 

She nodded, walked over and sat down on the end of the sofa close to the big plush chair he plopped into. “It’s nice.”

“Maybe we should seek out others like us. Enlarge our social circle.”

She laughed. “It wouldn’t take much to enlarge a social circle that consists of two.”

“You mean three. Don’t forget about Deluvian.”

“Deliverance.” She sighed and looked at the fire. “Not a friend.”

“Ouch. Well, all the more reason to network. Come on. You’ve never thought about it? Casting a spell to find out what others are out there?”

“Maybe I don’t want to know if we’re the last.”

“Pish. That’s beneath you. And we’re not.”

“How do you know?”

“I just know.”

“Oh, well then,” she agreed sarcastically.

“He reached over and tapped her knee with two fingers. “Let’s find out for sure.”

“What are you suggesting?”

“We have to lower the personal guards so we can be found. Right now there might be somebody out there looking for you. Or me.”

Sixt gave Harm a snide smile when she saw a dreamy look cloud his eyes. “And there it is. You’ve devolved into a sappy romantic who thinks that love is just over the next hill.”

“Why does that make me a sappy romantic? Our parents loved each other.”

Sixt turned to face forward at that. It was true. Her parents had given every appearance of loving each other and their children. They were crazy idealists. Love family. Serve community. Harm none.

“They did.”

His face softened when he saw that Sixt was wearing the faraway dreamy look he knew he got when he thought about a mate. “So what’s wrong with that?”

Her eyes snapped to his as her attention slammed back to reality. “Clusters invite being burned at the stake. Or drowned by dunking.”

He waved around the room. “We’re not poor, powerless farmers, Sixt. They should stay awake at night worrying about what we could do to them. If we combined our resources, we could rain global economic woes down on the world. Like plagues of Biblical proportion. We can put people into power or yank them away from every good thing they’ve ever known. Now we’re the big bad, sis. Don’t you know that?”

She sighed. “Seems like our insecurities, and I’m not saying they aren’t justified, drove us in similar directions.”

“It was only logical to insulate ourselves with money and power. As far as the benefits we could have given the humans? Like our parents wanted to do? Their loss.”

She felt a wave of affection for her brother. It had been a while since she’d felt connected to anything other than work and Ashes. She smiled. “You hungry?”

He ran his hand over a divinely formed six pack that rippled under his salmon colored knit shirt. “I’m always hungry. You know that.”

She chuckled. “I figured some things never change.”

His eyes crinkled at the corners as he returned her look of affection. “Some things never do.”

“Let’s go out among the torch and pitchfork crowd. They’ve learned a thing or two about culinary arts since we were children in Germany. What do you feel like?”

“Manly food.”

“What is that?”

He looked scandalized. “You must know. Americans specialize in manly food. Burgers. French fries. Steak. Prime rib. Shall I go on?”

“No. I get the idea. I heard about a place where people go after work sometimes.”

Author Bio:
New York Times bestselling author of thirteen romances. Victoria's Knights of Black Swan series won BEST PARANORMAL ROMANCE SERIES for the past THREE YEARS IN A ROW. Reviewers Choice Awards, The Paranormal Romance Guild.

Her paranormal romances come with uniquely fresh perspectives on "imaginary" creatures, characters, and themes. She adds a dash of scifi, a flourish of fantasy, enough humor to make you laugh out loud, and, occasionally, enough steam to make you squirm in your chair. Her heroines are independent femmes with flaws and minds of their own whether they are aliens, witches, demonologists, werewolves, hybrids, psychics, or past life therapists. Her heroes are hot and hunky, but they also have brains, character, and good manners... usually.

The rich characterizations come from being a lifelong student of behavior, casually, and a serious student of behavior academically. She also studied comparative religion, myths, and Dark Ages history.

Victoria lives in The Woodlands, Texas with her husband and a very smart, mostly black German Shepherd dog.

Victoria is co-host of the popular ROMANCE BETWEEN THE PAGES podcast.


The Demon Deliverance #12


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