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Thursday, July 30, 2015

The Forbidden Man by Elle Wright, talk about the edge of a scandal!

THE FORBIDDEN MAN by Elle Wright (July 28, 2015; Forever Mass Market; The Edge of Scandal #1)
In Love With the Wrong Man

Sydney Williams has forgiven her fiancé, Den, more times than she can count. But his latest betrayal just days before their wedding is too big to ignore. Shocking her friends and family, she calls off the engagement. She walks out on Den . . . and into the arms of his brother, Morgan.

Known as a player, Morgan Smith has secretly spent years fighting his feelings for Sydney. When Den's latest dirty deed leaves Sydney devastated, Morgan can't stop himself from coming to her rescue. What begins as friendship quickly escalates into all-consuming passion. Despite their intense connection, Sydney would rather deny her desire than come between brothers. But as Morgan is determined to make Sydney his, Den won't give her up without a fight . . .

Buy the book!

About the author:
Born and raised in Southeast Michigan near Ann Arbor, Elle learned the importance of reading from her mother. It was also her mother who, later on in her life, gave Elle her first romance nove: Indigo by Beverly Jenkins. From that moment on, Elle became a fan of Ms. Jenkins for life and a lover of all things romance. An old journal she wrote back in college became her first book (which she still wants to publish one day).

Social Media Links:

Read an Excerpt: 

“Are you still feeling cold?” he asked, adjusting the heater and finishing off the contents of his flask.
“Actually, I’m feeling pretty hot.” She jumped when he started coughing. “Are you okay?”
He wiped his mouth. “I’m straight.”
“You sure?” Syd studied his face as she smoothed her hand over his back.
“Yeah.” He closed the flask and tucked it back into his pocket. “It’s the liquor.”
“The bourbon.” He patted his pocket. “It’s making you hot.”
“Somehow I doubt that,” she mumbled.
“What?” he asked, leaning in closer.
I doubt it’s the liquor. “Forget it. I’m cold again.” She burrowed into him.
“You want me to make you hot?” he asked.
Her eyes flashed to his and her lips parted.
“I meant . . .” He cleared his throat and shifted in his seat.
“Uh, I can turn the heat up.”
“No.” She forced a smile and lowered her gaze. “It’s fine.”
When his hand caressed her cheek, her eyes closed of their own volition. Time seemed to stand still. She felt his warm breath on her skin above her lips. “I think—”
She dug her nails into his knee. “Maybe you should call Kent again. See where he is.”
He slid his thumb down the side of her neck.
She exhaled. So this is what Terry McMillan meant when she waited to exhale?  “Because this isn’t going anywhere good. You’re acting like you want to kiss me and I know that’s not true,” she joked.
He clenched her hair in his hands and tugged gently.
“How do you know that?”
She searched his eyes. “Do you? I mean—do you want to?”
“I do—and so many other things.”
She let out a nervous giggle. “I think you’re feeling the effects of that gasoline you’re drinking, Morgan.”
His gaze dropped to her mouth as his hand crept up her thigh and rested on her hip. She jumped in surprise when he squeezed. “Actually, I don’t believe I’m drunk enough,” he said. “At this point, I know exactly what I’m doing, which means I’d be held responsible for my actions.”
Syd placed her hands on his stomach and felt his taut muscles tighten in response. “Den would kill you. So would Red.”
Morgan traced her lips with his thumb. “It may be worth it. Let me . . .” Then, his mouth was on hers, drawing a low moan from her mouth. The simple touch of his lips to hers set off a fire in Syd that seemed to burn brighter and hotter with every second.
She wrapped her arms tightly around his neck as he continued to assault her senses with his kisses. He slid his tongue across her bottom lip, demanding entrance, which she happily granted. She gripped a fistful of his hair as he pulled her onto his lap. He rocked into her, introducing her to his rock hard erection. She braced her other hand against the window as she grinded into him. He trailed hot, wet kisses down her throat and cupped her breasts in his hands. As his thumbs traced her nipples, she cried out and he captured her cry with his hot mouth.

Reluctantly, she tried to pull away, but he latched onto her bottom lip with his teeth and sucked. He obviously wasn’t ready for this to end . . . neither was she.

Monday, July 13, 2015

The case of Serena Williams and the body shaming of black women

The moment two black girls in white beads took over the tennis world, I was a Serena Williams fan. I love Venus too, but Serena is the younger sister and I can relate.
When you hear the word curvy, if you don't think of Serena, something ain't right in your head.

But after Serena's latest Wimbledon title all we hear about is her body is too manly and other (white) tennis players don't want to look like her. 
Williams, who will be vying for the Wimbledon title against Garbiñe Muguruza on Saturday, has large biceps and a mold-breaking muscular frame, which packs the power and athleticism that have dominated women’s tennis for years. Her rivals could try to emulate her physique, but most of them choose not to.

It's OK, because not only can they not look like Serena, they can't play like her either. 21 grand-slam singles titles and her fourth in a row, the problem isn't Serena's muscles, it's her dominance. People still can't get over this black woman from Compton winning on the court and in life. 
Historically white activities.
Nontraditional participants.
Serena Williams and Misty Copeland are the faces of their respective professions in the United States.
Williams is the face of American tennis (men’s and women’s), while Copeland is the face of American ballet. Both came from humble beginnings in California. Both took unique paths into their professions. Both faced historical, racial and occupational obstacles. Both have dealt with negative commentary about their anatomies.
And both have overcome every challenge along the way to reach the pinnacle of their vocations. In traditionally white professions. 

And the assets of black women don't become assets until they are on a woman of another color. Kim Kardashian, anyone?
Big butts became the thing when Jennifer Lopez burst on the scene. But shapely black women had been belittled because of their behinds for years.

In her classic 1984 book, When and Where I Enter - The Impact of Black Women on Race and Sex in America, Professor Paula Giddings argues that these “negative images of Black women had always made them vulnerable to sexual assault”. She cites the work of Philip A Bruce, a historian and son of a plantation owner who published The Plantation Negro as a Freeman in 1889. He wrote that black women who saw no “immorality in doing what nature prompts” were to blame for their own denigration. He also noted the “wantonness” of black women. ——The Guardian

I'm sure the wonderful Serena Williams is unbothered by this bull, but I am bothered. I'm fed up. I'm pissed off!
Either the media is saying black women are obese or manly. Hell, they talk about First Lady Michelle Obama because she wants to get kids moving and her arms have definition. And it's not just white folks.
Fat ass Jason Whitlock has the greasy covered gall to call Serena fat. Sir, have you looked in the mirror and stepped on a scale? How about this — you and the horse you rode in on.
Serena is flawless and if you don't like it, that's your issue!

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Behind the story: Lisa Marie Perry and Cheris Hodges take you inside Blissful Summer


Two exotic locations. Two couples about to discover the thrill of rekindled passion.

Make You Mine Again by Cheris Hodges

Supermodel Jansen Douglas is living her dream. Now a wedding in Paris is about to reunite her with the high school sweetheart she left behind. But Atlanta CEO Bradley Stephens won't let their stormy past stand in the way of reclaiming his first and only love.

Unraveled by Lisa Marie Perry

Ona Tracy's plans to seduce her high school crush unravel when the reunion trip she books turns out to be an erotic-themed cruise to the Bahamas! Rather than abandon ship, she recruits blond-haired, silver-eyed Riker Ewan to be her hookup, unaware that the hot-bodied ex-marine isn't who he seems to be…

The authors dish on what was the inspiration for these stories:
Lisa Marie Perry:
Q1: How did you come up with your main couples?

I knew from the start that I wanted to write an interracial couple who experience an instant attraction and connection. Ona is African American and Riker is Caucasian. In the past I've written interracial couples whose conflict has zero to do with racial and cultural details, but I wanted to give Ona and Riker a different journey. Ona is a quirky multitalented performer--and a liar. Riker is a Boston-bred ex-Marine and current blue-collar bartender--and also a liar. They end up aboard an erotic-themed cruise, each harboring secret agendas, and when they meet, lust binds them both and doesn't let go until their every vulnerability is exposed and every inhibition released.

Q2: What was the best part about writing your story?

Writing Ona and Riker's lust-at-first-sight romance was by far the best and most fun part of this experience. They are so sexy and dirty together and they do--and say--things that I absolutely would not.

Q3: Pick a favorite scene from your story and give the readers some background on what you did to create it?

Easy--Ona and Riker's first kiss! It's sensual and dramatic and exhilarating--at least to me. ;-) Enjoy.

Q4: How can readers get in contact with you?

I love hearing from readers. Visit me at and also on Twitter (@PerryOrdinary).

            Cheris Hodges

Q1: How did you come up with your main couples?
I love to see people who used to be in love discover that they still love each other. So, with Jansen and Bradley, I wanted to bring them together with each one of them thinking they didn’t have a chance. And a hero who thinks he has a chance to steal his one true love from another man is so much fun to create.

Q2: What was the best part about writing your story?
I love Paris. I haven’t been yet, but I’ve done enough research on the city to feel as if I belong there. And Paris was the perfect setting to rekindle romance. So, aside from the romance between Jansen and Bradley, researching Paris was SO MUCH FUN!

Q3: Pick a favorite scene from your story and give the readers some background on what you did to create it?
One of my favorite scenes in Make You Mine Again, has to be when Bradley tries to pretend seeing a picture of Jansen with her “fiance” doesn’t bother him. I tried to think of a certain ex of mine and I hope this would be his reaction when I showed up in a major publication on the arms of a fine famous man. I actually asked him how he would feel about. That clown laughed.

Q4: How can readers get in contact with you?
I’m all over the Internet. Readers can visit my website:, follow me on Twitter @cherishodges, follow my blog: and they can also get insight on Blissful Summer at

Lisa Marie Perry
excerpt (first kiss)

Exchanging the glasses for contact lenses, and trading the sweats for a black mesh bikini top with a bow and matching bottoms, Ona swept up her swim tote and joined Regan.
            “That is not a bikini,” Regan accused. “It’s sheer.”
            “Not completely. The bow hides the nipples and the bottoms are solid at the crotch and booty crack.”
            Scoffing, Regan insisted, “I’m only considering your welfare.”
            “You said that before.”
            “Last night you were on Nicholas’s lap and now you’re going to be lounging around a pool wearing that in front of him? It’s an attention-getter.”
            An attention-getter …  Perfect.
            They’d gotten no farther than halfway down the hall before Cole Stanwyck nudged between them, securing his arms around their waists. “The two hottest women onboard. I would’ve been the king of PAAC if I had the pair of you keeping my arms full. Where are you headed?”
            Ever the composed, cool one, Regan gave her deep gold curls a toss. “Cole, juvenile come-ons don’t affect me.”
            “That hurts, Regan. Stilts, make it up to me.”
            Hesitant to linger in his company, Ona at last said, “We’re going to the lower deck.”
            The walk was uneventful, meaning Cole didn’t try to stick his hand between her legs, as he’d tried to when they were seniors at PAAC. Ona hadn’t realized she was sweating until the three of them arrived at the deck. What further concerned her was that she might’ve panicked had Regan Waltz not been there to protect her in a strange, accidental way.
            “If you’re going to be sitting on anybody’s lap, let it be mine,” Cole said as he escorted Ona and Regan to the doors where two crewmembers stood by to offer assistance. “Nicholas didn’t book you for the entire trip, did he?”
            Regan snapped, “Ona has someone, Cole, and it’s not Nicholas. She has someone else and they’re having plenty of sex. So can you please stop the bullshit?”
            Ona and Cole froze as Regan untangled herself from his hold and started to stalk out on the pool deck ahead of them.
            “Regan, wait,” Ona tried, craning her neck to see the woman through the people cutting across her line of vision.
            Regan paused to accept a rolled cool towel and a bowl of fruit from a row of pool refreshment staff. “The only reason I’m not going to a champagne pool right now is because Rajon asked everyone to show up here,” she hollered to the pair. “I’m only doing this because I respect that man more than I’ll ever respect you, Cole.”
            “Repressed bitch,” he sneered at Regan’s back.
            Ona pushed against him. “Let me go. I will not listen to you call her that.”
            “You don’t like her, and she sure as hell doesn’t like you.”
            “That’s true. I’m not going to deny it. But I didn’t come to this deck to make alliances. I came to catch up with the group. Some of us want this to be a positive experience.”
            Cole snatched his arm from her waist, and because she’d been struggling against him, she stumbled at the abrupt freedom. He made no move to steady her—not that she would’ve let him, anyway. “I’m positive you’ve been experiencing Nicholas Callaghan.”
            “Think what you want,” she said, scanning the deck and finding roughly half of the group.
            “If you’re with somebody, where is he?” Cole persisted.
            Ona felt sweaty again, uncomfortably hot, but a cool towel or fruit or concoctions from the pool deck’s snazzy bar wouldn’t be of any relief. Stress sawed at her nerves, and she wanted to get away. “He’s …”
            “Where, Ona?”
            “He’s—” Ona’s gaze swung across the deck, and he was there. Not a made-up sex man or a man she could have a genuine relationship with, but Riker Ewan. One hand gripped a safety railing, the other held his phone, and taut muscles bulged across his arms and back. A gray T-shirt and athletic shorts today, and his dog tags were out, dangling from a simple silver chain. Sunglasses concealed his eyes, but she recognized him clearly. Her body had sensed his. “He’s there, on the phone.”
            “I don’t believe you.” Cole said it calmly, as though he almost enjoyed cornering her and forcing her to face her own lies. “Admit you lied and I won’t have you embarrass yourself in front of the club.”
            “Not that I owe you any explanation, Cole,” she served back, “but I’m not available and my marine probably won’t appreciate that I’ve had to tell you so many times. You need to leave me alone.”
            For effect, she crossed the deck to Riker and took his phone from his hand. Disconnecting the call, she whispered solemnly, “I’m sorry. I’m so sorry, Riker, but I need your help.”
            A frown immediately creased his face. “It’s yours. What’s wrong?”
            “You told me you’re at my service. If you meant what you said yesterday about pretending to be with me, kiss me.” Ona wrapped an arm around his shoulders, because she would start trembling if she didn’t hold on to something solid. So many men in her life had assumed that just because she was tall, seemed strong, she never needed support. Would Riker give her that?
            “Are you sure about this, Ona?”
            “Kiss me,” she said again. “Make it good. Make it so nothing and no one else on this deck exists.”
            “Put my phone in my pocket,” he said calmly in her ear, his lip moving over the shell. “My hands are going to be on you and I’m not gonna take them off until we’re done here. And he’s going to envy me. He’s going to want to have this chance with you.”
            Ona nodded because it was true, technically. To be further technical, it was Cole who’d envy Riker and who’d want this chance with her. She didn’t know what Nicholas wanted.
            Riker took her in stages. Large hands grasped her hips, preparing her. Eyes that were simultaneously blue as ice and gray as smoke perused her. Beautiful, warm, hungry mouth claimed hers with a sudden force that had her head snapping back and her legs collapsing.
            His teeth captured her lips one at a time, and his tongue tasted her. To have his strength wrapped around her … To have his firm mouth open to hers …
            No one had ever said a kiss could void all sensation but arousal. It was a lesson she had to learn for herself as he held her and grinded. Moving against her like this, he spoke to her, admitted his desire and coaxed her to admit hers.
            It didn’t feel like a first kiss. It was absent of expectation and curiosity and nervousness. There was just addictive pleasure.

Make You Mine Again
By Cheris Hodges

 “I messed that up. I guess you’re going to get your happily ever after with that guy. Congratulations, Jansen. But how does he feel knowing you ditched him to find me?”
“I didn’t come to find you. I see you still think the sun doesn’t rise until it hits your ass. You haven’t changed at all, have you?”
“Oh. I’ve changed. And so have you.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?”
“You’re even more beautiful than I remember.”
A heated blush filled her cheeks, crept down her neck and finally settled between her thighs. “It’s the make up and…”
“No, Jansen, it’s you. You’ve always been gorgeous. Maybe I wasn’t ready to share you with the world. I should’ve been more supportive of what you wanted rather than thinking you should have hidden your light.”
She shot him a blank look. “You wanted everything your way, how did that work out for you?”
“I should probably thank you,” he said.
“Thank me?”
He nodded and took a sip of his drink, trying and failing not to look at her cleavage. “I realized that day that I can’t expect my woman to do everything I want her do. And though I thought the center meant as much to you as it did to me, I shouldn’t have made that assumption for you. I still believe with your brain, you could’ve done something more with your life. You could’ve been on the front line teaching these young girls the value of their lives.”
She wondered if he even realized how saying that three years ago would’ve changed their lives. But right now, he sounded like a pompous jerk. Jansen rolled her eyes. “A little too late,” she said.
“Better late than never. I’m also thankful for your generosity,” he said. “The donations that you make every year help us further our cause of helping families and victims of domestic violence.”
“I loved your parents and what they stood for, I’m glad that I can help their legacy continue.”
“You could’ve done a lot more if you stayed on the staff…”
“You’re really going to start that again?”
“No,” he said as he eased closer to her chair. “I’m going to start this.” He cupped her face in his hands and kissed her slow, deliberate and passionate. He slipped his hands between her thighs and a soft moan escaped her throat. Jansen trembled with anticipation, with longing. Inside, Bradley beamed knowing she still belonged to him. Still clamored for his touch as much as he yearned for her.
Breaking the kiss, he looked into Jansen’s eyes.
“Do you love him?”
“What?” she asked, blinking rapidly.
“Well, do you?”
“Are you serious? You’re jealous of tabloid headlines?”
“No, I’m just wondering what kind of man allows the woman he’s supposed to marry to walk the streets of Paris alone.  If you were my woman, I would never allow that to happen.”
Jansen rose to her feet and glared at him. “Yeah, you’re the same as you’ve always been. Still want to be in control of everything. All men don’t think like you, thank God. Why don’t we just call it a life? There’s nothing else we need to say to one another.”
Bradley stood up and closed the space between them. “There’s plenty to say,” he said. “I’ve never stopped loving you and—” He stroked her arm. “I can feel how much you want me, Jansen. So, forgive me if I don’t celebrate your engagement. And I’m not going to watch you marry a man that you may like, but don’t love.”
“I am…” Bradley silenced her with a kiss that made her knees quiver. His tongue filled her mouth, reminding her that no one could kiss like Bradley, no one could find the way to her soul with a kiss. No one but Bradley. And when he pulled her against his hard body, she felt the throbbing of all of his muscles and melted against him. She wanted to peel her dress off and let him have his way with her. She wanted to go back to the days when she and Bradley woke up entwined in each other’s arms and the previous night’s passion became that morning’s desire.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Sorry, John we can't just watch TV

Dear John Schneider,

Do you mind if I call you John? Frankly I don't care if you do or don't. I grew up watching the Dukes of Hazzard because I had no choice. There were three channels, I was a kid and if my grandmother was watching TV you just watched it.

As I learned who General Lee was and what the flag on the top of your orange car meant, I started reading book rather than watch your show. I'm not going to lie, I do some times hop in my car through the window. But your flippant response to the way people feel about that flag is very telling.
Remember, you Tweeted this bull:

Earlier Wednesday, the actor tweeted a photo of Charleston terrorist Dylan Roof burning a U.S. flag while clad in a Gold’s Gym shirt, lest we forget that the ridiculous act of pulling The Dukes Of Hazzard off the air was perpetuated by nine people being murdered. “I am grossly offended by the flag burning. But…is the Gold’s Gym logo to be considered a symbol of racism as well now?,” Schneider asked. (To be fair, the Ku Klux Klan never waved the Gold’s Gym banner while instigating a lynching.) --Source

But hey, it's just TV? The image of the flag doesn't mean anything good for someone who looks like me. But it's in my face every damned day. I don't want to see it on your car as you play a good ol' boy running from the cops, when in real life, I have to worry if my nephew will get shot while jogging and a cop is around.
Let's be real, you're made about the royalties you won't be getting. You don't give a damn about what that flag represents. Just because the fictional character you played on TV wasn't "racist" it doesn't mean the KKK is following in your footsteps. And this quote from the Hollywood Reporter really speaks to your character.

Throwing this particular baby out with the bathwater seems reactionary and overly PC to me. If the flag was a symbol of racism, then Bo and Luke and Daisy and Uncle Jesse were a pack of wild racists, and that could not be further from the truth.”

What I hate about these people saying it's just TV is that you folks are acting as if this shit was ever OK. IT. WAS. NEVER. OK!

So, I'm sorry, John, we can't watch TV. If accusations pulled the Cosby Show off TV, a terrorist act in a historic black church is good reason to pull this off as well.

Don't you have a new show to promote anyway?
In other words, please have a seat.