Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Lies, Love, & Redemption Kelli A. Wilkins




 
An Inside Look at Lies, Love & Redemption (Part 1)
By Kelli A. Wilkins
Hi everyone,
One day, I was thinking about nothing in particular when this popped into my mind:
A man limping along the prairie. He’s been shot and left for dead. He’s bleeding and hurt bad. And thirsty. So thirsty. It’s hot and he wants to rest, but he knows he has to push on. If he collapses again, he’s not going to get up and he’ll die here. But maybe he’s already dead and this is hell. Or maybe not...
That was my introduction to Sam, the hero from my new historical western, Lies, Love & Redemption. That was also how I introduced readers to Sam—lost and hurt and wandering along the prairie.
Here’s the book summary that came from that initial idea:
Lies, Love & Redemption
Shot and left for dead, Sam Hixton stumbles into a general store on the Nebraska prairie and collapses into the arms of Cassie Wilcox.
Cassie’s world is turned upside down when the handsome stranger drops into her life. Sam is another complication she doesn’t need: her business is dying and her trouble with the townspeople is escalating. Yet she’s determined to keep the store open — no matter what the cost.
As Sam recovers from his injuries, he hides the truth about his identity and convinces Cassie to let him work in the store. He’s attracted to her and admires her independent nature but quickly realizes Cassie’s in way over her head. They fight their growing attraction, and Cassie questions whether she can trust her fragile heart to a mysterious stranger. Will he accept her once he knows about her troubled past?
Cassie resists Sam’s advances and represses her feelings until one fateful night when they give in to their fiery passion. Together, they work out a plan to save the store but find their efforts are thwarted—and their lives endangered—by the locals.
Sam’s secret returns to haunt him and pulls him away just when Cassie needs him the most. Will he regain her trust when she learns the truth?
Cassie has everything invested in the store—can she save it and find true love with Sam before it’s too late?
***
Believe it or not, that first scene came to me several years ago. When I got the idea for the book, I did all the initial research and wrote a very rough draft. Then the manuscript just sat around. I’m not exactly sure why so many other book projects came ahead of it, but they did. I wrote other romances while this one was waiting in the wings, so to speak. The story was always there, but I guess I wasn’t ready to revise and edit it.

I started working on the book last year and found that although the basic premise still resonated with me, I wanted (and needed) to make a lot of changes. I always had the opening scene of Sam walking across the prairie in my mind. I knew where he was going (to Cassie’s store), and I had the general idea of how the story would play out and who the characters were, but I didn’t have the specifics of each scene.

As I got further into revising the book, the details became more solidified. I added new scenes, deleted others, and generally gave it a complete makeover. Now it’s a much stronger (and better) book than it was originally.

But before I started writing, I did a lot of research. First, I had to decide when and where the book would take place. I knew it would be on the prairie somewhere (Kansas? Nebraska? Iowa?) and set after the Civil War. Once I picked a time period and a place I researched everything I could about it: what was going on in the country at that time, how people traveled, what their occupations were, what they ate, how a general store was set up…

I enjoy reading about history and exploring what life was like in different time periods, so doing the research part of a historical romance is interesting—but time consuming. I’m always scribbling notes about details I could use in the book. I never use them all, but adding realistic details helps draw readers into the world of the characters, even though it might be very different from how we live now.
Although I have written a lot of historical romances, the time periods are always different. I’ve used Medieval (A Most Unusual Princess), Scottish (The Viking’s Witch) and Colonial (Dangerous Indenture) settings. When I’m writing a historical romance, I never know when (or where) the characters will take me. Lies, Love & Redemption is set on the Nebraska prairie in 1877 and blends a steamy romance with mystery and danger.
Here’s a mild excerpt:

Cassie removed the sling and uncovered Sam’s shoulder. She bent forward, resting her hand on the center of Sam’s chest. His skin was warm, and she felt his muscles ripple beneath his skin. Her heart beat faster, and she closed her eyes. She shouldn’t be in here. It wasn’t proper, and yet . . . It took all her willpower not to peek at his lower half again.

How is it?”

She opened her eyes and checked the wound. “It looks fine to me.” A lock of hair came loose from her bun and brushed across Sam’s chest. He reached up with his good hand and tucked it behind her ear.

Before she could protest, he leaned in close and kissed her.

Oh, Lord.

Sam’s lips moved against hers, slow and tender, as if he expected her to pull away or slap him. She didn’t. Instead, she closed her eyes and gave in.

Sam clutched her tighter, pulling her down to him. Her fingertips splayed against his bare chest, and she moaned. God, it felt good to be kissed and held by a strong man again.

A warm pulsing sensation flooded between her legs as Sam slipped his tongue into her mouth. She lost herself in his embrace and everything faded away. After what seemed like forever, Sam broke the kiss.

Stay with me,” he whispered.

She gazed into his blue eyes. “I can’t. I should—”

Yes, you can. I’ll treat you right. We’ll only do as much as you want. Kissing and cuddling, that’s all,” he said, then kissed her again.

That’s all? That wouldn’t be enough for her. Once they got down to serious kissing and touching, she wouldn’t want to stop. And she wouldn’t let Sam stop—even if he wanted to.

Cassie melted in his arms. Their tongues entwined, probing and exploring each other’s mouths. Sam’s kisses stripped her of all reason and left her with a raging desire that needed to be sated.

It would be so easy to give in, to say yes, stay here all afternoon and . . . Was Sam healthy enough to make love? Lord almighty, what was she thinking? She knew better. After all she’d been through, she knew she should resist him, but . . .

Cassie? You here?” Luke bellowed from downstairs.

She yanked herself from Sam’s arms. “Damn!”

Don’t answer him.”

I have to. If I don’t, he’ll come up here.” She stood and adjusted the covers over Sam’s chest. “Be down in a minute,” she hollered.

Get rid of him and come back. I think I’m on my way to a speedy recovery,” Sam said, grinning.

***


Order Lies, Love & Redemption on Amazon:

and on B&N:


Read more about the book and get links to other platforms here:


I hope you enjoyed part one of this inside look at the making of Lies, Love & Redemption. In part two, I’ll focus on the characters and discuss how they came to be. I welcome comments and questions from readers. Be sure to follow my blog for the latest updates and visit me on social media!
Happy Reading!
Kelli


ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kelli A. Wilkins is an award-winning author who has published more than 100 short stories, 19 romance novels, and 5 non-fiction books. Her romances span many genres and heat levels.
Loving a Wild Stranger was released in January 2017. This historical/pioneer romance is set in the wilds of the Michigan Territory and blends tender romance with adventure.
Kelli's third Medallion Press romance, Lies, Love & Redemption was released in September 2016. This spicy historical western is set on the Nebraska prairie in 1877.
In 2016 Kelli began re-releasing her romances previously published by Amber Quill Press. Visit her website and blog for a full title list, book summaries, and other information.
Her writing book, You Can Write—Really! A Beginner’s Guide to Writing Fiction is a fun and informative non-fiction guide based on her years of experience as a writer. It’s filled with writing exercises and helpful tips all authors can use.
If you like to be scared, check out Kelli’s horror ebooks: Dead Til Dawn and Kropsy’s Curse.
Kelli posts on her Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKelliWilkins and Twitter: www.Twitter.com/KWilkinsauthor. She also writes a weekly blog: http://kelliwilkinsauthor.blogspot.com/.
Visit her website, www.KelliWilkins.com to learn more about all of her writings, read book excerpts, reviews, and more. Readers can sign up for her newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/HVQqb.


CATCH UP WITH KELLI

Here are a few links to find Kelli & her writings on the web
Newsletter sign-up: http://eepurl.com/HVQqb









An Inside Look at Lies, Love & Redemption (Part 2)
By Kelli A. Wilkins
Hi everyone,
Today I’m sharing part two of an “inside look” at the making of my newest historical western romance, Lies, Love & Redemption. In the first blog, I talked about how the book came to be and discussed the research involved in writing a historical romance. Today, I’ll explore the characters and touch on another subject—realism.
The book opens with Sam, the hero, bleeding from gunshot wounds and stumbling across the prairie. He’s wondering if he is already dead and suffering in hell for what he has done in the past.
This gives readers initial insight into Sam. Right from the start, we know he has done something that he feels guilty about, and he is harboring secrets. We also see that Sam is stubborn and not the type of man to give up easily.
When readers meet Cassie in her store, they see that she works hard trying to make her store successful. But they also see her going through the motions and wondering why she bothers.
Each character is at a cross-roads, and everything is about to change for them. As the book progresses, we learn that Cassie is headstrong, stubborn, and not the type to take guff from Sam or the people in town. She’s running a store all by herself and doesn’t like to accept help or rely on anyone.
I contrasted Cassie’s independent nature with a secret vulnerability. The consequences of a failed relationship left Cassie emotionally fragile and broken. She says she’s not afraid of anything, but later we learn that’s not true. Deep down, she fears losing the store. She’s also afraid of falling in love with Sam, only to lose him. Cassie has experienced many losses in her life, and she is hesitant to open her heart and trust anyone.
Sam is a noble man who feels he has a debt to pay and a duty to watch over Cassie, and this leads to conflict between them. She doesn’t want to admit that she needs his help, and he is being overprotective of her (or so she thinks…).

Although Sam comes across as honest and open, readers quickly discover that Sam is keeping his past a secret and is hiding his true identity—and much more—from everyone. Sam is a troubled soul who has also experienced a lot of loss in his life. Without giving too much away, readers learn that Sam lost someone very important to him through an act of violence, and he’s set on getting his revenge—and that’s not pretty.

This leads me to my next topic—realism. Before I sat down to write, I did a lot of research about general stores, what life was like in the 1870s, etc., and I learned that life back then was very difficult and much different from how we live today.

People died of infections, diseases, and all sorts of other ailments, and there was the threat of violence to consider. The west was known for being “lawless” and some people took advantage of the fact that you could practically do whatever you wanted. (If you really want to see how gritty and brutal life was like back then, watch the TV show Deadwood. You’ll see gunfights, murders, robberies, hangings, and other acts of aggression that were all-too-common in that era.)

Life for anyone in the “wild” west was tough. Combine that with the fact that women virtually were the property of their husbands and had no rights, and you have the makings for pretty rough times for women.

I incorporated a few of these elements into Lies, Love & Redemption. How could I not? The setting and time period have to be realistically represented in the book. Although readers might take issue with including violence in a romance, it has a place in the story (to a degree).
If everything was too perfect or too pretty, the book would lose the richness in details that bring it—and the characters—to life.

Having Sam face the threat of a potentially lethal infection, Cassie trying to help a woman escape a violent marriage, and Sam admitting the horrific truth of his past, all work together to give the book an authentic feel.

And part of an author’s job (especially when writing historical romances) is to let readers live the story through the eyes and experiences of the characters. One thing authors are told is to make life difficult for your hero and heroine. If there is no conflict or drama, the story becomes dull, and the characters have nothing to strive for and don’t grow.

Yes, I may have put Sam and Cassie (and a few other characters) through an emotional wringer, and yes, they had to face violent situations, but they’re strong and their challenges built up their resilience.

And of course, as in any romance, it all worked out happily-ever-after.

Here’s the summary:
Lies, Love & Redemption
Shot and left for dead, Sam Hixton stumbles into a general store on the Nebraska prairie and collapses into the arms of Cassie Wilcox.
Cassie’s world is turned upside down when the handsome stranger drops into her life. Sam is another complication she doesn’t need: her business is dying and her trouble with the townspeople is escalating. Yet she’s determined to keep the store open — no matter what the cost.
As Sam recovers from his injuries, he hides the truth about his identity and convinces Cassie to let him work in the store. He’s attracted to her and admires her independent nature but quickly realizes Cassie’s in way over her head. They fight their growing attraction, and Cassie questions whether she can trust her fragile heart to a mysterious stranger. Will he accept her once he knows about her troubled past?
Cassie resists Sam’s advances and represses her feelings until one fateful night when they give in to their fiery passion. Together, they work out a plan to save the store but find their efforts are thwarted—and their lives endangered—by the locals.
Sam’s secret returns to haunt him and pulls him away just when Cassie needs him the most. Will he regain her trust when she learns the truth?
Cassie has everything invested in the store—can she save it and find true love with Sam before it’s too late?
***


Order Lies, Love & Redemption on Amazon:



Read more about the book and get links to other platforms here:


I hope you enjoyed this inside look at the making of Lies, Love & Redemption. I welcome comments and questions from readers. Be sure to follow my blog for the latest updates and visit me on social media!
Happy Reading,
Kelli A. Wilkins




ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kelli A. Wilkins is an award-winning author who has published more than 100 short stories, 19 romance novels, and 5 non-fiction books. Her romances span many genres and heat levels.
Loving a Wild Stranger was released in January 2017. This historical/pioneer romance is set in the wilds of the Michigan Territory and blends tender romance with adventure.
Kelli's third Medallion Press romance, Lies, Love & Redemption was released in September 2016. This spicy historical western is set on the Nebraska prairie in 1877.
In 2016 Kelli began re-releasing her romances previously published by Amber Quill Press. Visit her website and blog for a full title list, book summaries, and other information.
Her writing book, You Can Write—Really! A Beginner’s Guide to Writing Fiction is a fun and informative non-fiction guide based on her years of experience as a writer. It’s filled with writing exercises and helpful tips all authors can use.
If you like to be scared, check out Kelli’s horror ebooks: Dead Til Dawn and Kropsy’s Curse.
Kelli posts on her Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKelliWilkins and Twitter: www.Twitter.com/KWilkinsauthor. She also writes a weekly blog: http://kelliwilkinsauthor.blogspot.com/.
Visit her website, www.KelliWilkins.com to learn more about all of her writings, read book excerpts, reviews, and more. Readers can sign up for her newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/HVQqb.




CATCH UP WITH KELLI

Here are a few links to find Kelli & her writings on the web
Newsletter sign-up: http://eepurl.com/HVQqb

 

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

An Inside Look at Loving a Wild Stranger by Kelli A. Willkins





An Inside Look at Loving a Wild Stranger

Hi everyone,

Today I’m sharing an inside look and an excerpt from my latest historical romance, Loving a Wild Stranger. This full-length pioneer-wilderness romance is set in the Michigan Territory and blends adventure with a sensual love story.

Here’s the summary:

Loving a Wild Stranger

A woman running from her past… straight into the arms of an untamed man

In a moment of desperation, Kathleen Stanton flees her pampered life in Kingston, New York and ends up stranded in a small town in the Michigan Territory. Out of money and forced to rely on her instincts, she impersonates a handsome stranger’s mail-order bride.

Committed to her deception, Kathleen calls herself Michelle and starts her new life with Luther in an isolated cabin in the wilderness. Luther can’t believe his luck when his beautiful bride arrives, but something doesn’t feel right about his new wife. Michelle has terrifying nightmares involving a man named Roger and is reluctant to talk about where she came from.

Luther’s friend, Redfeather visits and tries to convince Luther to send Michelle back east. Distrusting Michelle, he warns Luther that his bride is not what she seems. But Luther is in love with Michelle, and he is harboring a secret of his own—one that might force Michelle to reject him when she learns the truth.
Michelle falls in love with Luther and adapts to her new way of life. Together, they face off against brutal townspeople and overcome harsh living conditions. When they finally give in to their desires and agree to become a proper man and wife, a dark figure from Michelle’s past resurfaces and threatens to destroy everything.

***

The idea for this book started with a simple premise: a woman on the run impersonates a mountain man’s mail-order bride and lives in his cabin in the woods. From there, I thought about the characters and how they would interact, learn to live with each other, and naturally, fall in love. 

But before I started writing, I went to the library and did a lot of research. First, I had to decide on the time period. When and where I set my story would determine all the necessary details that bring the characters to life—and also influence the plot.

Once the time period was finalized, I needed to learn about mail-order brides, fur trapping and trading, Native Americans, and get an overall feel for what life was like back then. As I wrote the book, I incorporated my research as background information. This gives the story a rich historical feel without going overboard with details that might bog down the book or bore readers.

I enjoyed creating the characters and all the conflicts that take place between them. Michelle and Luther are very different peoplesort of like a city mouse and a country mouseand I played on their differences in lifestyles, clothing, expectations, etc. throughout the book. When Luther’s friend Redfeather arrives, Michelle realizes how far she is out of her comfort zone and begins to see her situation (and Luther) in a new light.

As Luther and Michelle get to know each other (and fight for each other) they realize they have a lot more in common than they once thought. They both had to fend for themselves to survive in a rough world, with little or no family support. This brings them closer together and makes their love stronger.

I enjoyed writing this book, and I hope readers will fall in love with the characters the way I did.


Here’s an excerpt:


Kathleen’s knees shook as she strode down the sidewalk toward the livery. She had to get out of the store before there was trouble. She felt sorry for that man, Luther. He’d seemed nice enough when he gave her back her glove.
The coach waited near the livery, and her trunks still sat on the sidewalk. She had some time left. What should she do? She didn’t dare get back on the coach, but this town was awful and she didn’t want to stay here. Perhaps she could throw herself on the mercy of the church. There had to be one somewhere and the reverend would take her in. Or would he?
Kathleen crossed the street and entered the livery. A round-faced man slouching behind the counter straightened up.
You must be from the stage,” he said, gazing at the front of her dress.
She folded her arms across her bosom and looked him square in the eye. “How did you know?” she asked, her voice dripping with sarcasm.
Because I’ve been with all the women in town and you ain’t one of ’em. You Clyde’s new girl? I’d pay two dollars for a night with you.” He winked.
How dare you! I’m looking for the church.”
The man spit a stream of tobacco juice on the floor next to her brown boots. “We ain’t got a church. If you ain’t the new whore, then what are you doin’ here?”
She spotted the newspaper the man had open on the counter in front of him. An advertisement for wedding lace gave her an idea. “I’m a mail-order bride.”
That so?” He scowled. “Who’s the lucky man?”
Kathleen twisted her skirts and tried to stall for time. “There’s a problem with the papers you see…”
She glanced out the window. The driver stood near the coach, scratching his head. A second later, she heard the familiar clomp of boots on the sidewalk. This was her one chance. It had to work. She had always trusted her instincts, and now she could only think of one answer. Her gut told her to take the risk. “Luther’s his name and—”
Luther?” The liveryman’s eyes widened. “Well, you’re in the right place.” He arched an eyebrow. “You sure it’s Luther?”
She nodded as the coach pulled away. All hope of escape left town in a swirl of dust. Her trunks lay abandoned on the sidewalk. There was no going back now. This man thought she was a mail-order bride. She tried to remember what she’d read about them. It sounded simple, a man sent money to a company and they sent a wife.
She tensed as the livery door opened.
Hey, Karl. I pulled the wagon—” Luther stopped as he spotted her.
She averted her gaze and smoothed her skirts, suddenly ashamed of her appearance. What man would accept her unwashed and dusty?
The liveryman laughed. “Hell, Luther, looks like ya got more than you thought goin’ home with ya.”
What’s that mean?”
Kathleen closed her eyes. What had she done? This wasn’t a game anymore.
Seems your wife came special delivery on the coach.”
My what?”
She heard the surprise in Luther’s voice. What if he hadn’t sent away for a bride like the men in the store had said? She had to think of a story, now. Luther’s boots clomped across the floor and stopped in front of her. When he cleared his throat, she opened her eyes.
Luther stood two feet away, holding his hat in his hands. His head was cocked to one side. “He foolin’? This a trick they paid ya for?”
No,” she whispered. “No trick.”
As Luther’s shoulders relaxed, his face softened.
Kathleen clenched her hands behind her back, took a deep breath, and started her story. “I had paperwork for you to fill out, but there was a problem on the stage and some luggage got left behind, so there’s nothing for you to sign.” Her voice wavered, and she coughed lightly. “I sent the mail order place a wire. They said they’d send the papers as soon as they can, so…”
That’s fine, ma’am.” He smiled. “My name is Luther Dubois, and you don’t know how long I’ve been waitin’ for you. Come with me. I’ll put the feed on the cart, and we’ll get settled.” Luther lifted a bulky sack from the floor and walked to the door, obviously expecting her to follow.
She hurried after Luther. A chestnut-colored horse and a wooden cart waited outside the livery. Luther headed to the cart with the sack slung over his shoulder like a dead body. He half-turned to her. “He give you any trouble?”
Who?”
Man inside, Karl. The men in this town ain’t known for their manners, especially when it comes to women.” Luther dropped the sack into the wagon.
My trunks are over there.”
I’ll fetch ’em. But I’m afraid I ain’t got room for you in back with all the supplies. You’ll ride behind me.”
She watched as Luther carried her trunks to the cart and tucked them in next to sacks of flour, grain, and other supplies.
You ready, Miss…”
All of a sudden she realized that Luther had never asked her name. “Evans, I’m Michelle Evans,” she answered. After months on the run, she was smart enough never to give her real name.
Me-chelle, that’s French.” Luther smiled. “Miss Me-chelle, we’ll be on our way.” He mounted the horse and reached down to her. “Give me your hand and swing your leg over.”
Kathleen bit her bottom lip, unsure. If she did this, there was no turning back.
Now don’t tell me you ain’t never rode a horse before,” Luther joked.
Kathleen placed her hand in Luther’s palm and he hoisted her onto the horse. She sat behind him and adjusted her skirts. Where were the saddle and stirrups? Luther rode only with a blanket and reins.
Wrap your arms around my middle and hold on. We’ll get home before dark.”
Home? She clutched Luther as the horse lurched forward, willing herself to stay strong. If she started to cry now, she’d never stop. What in heaven’s name had she done?


Order your copy of Loving a Wild Stranger here:
B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/loving-a-wild-stranger-kelli-a-wilkins/1125413251?ean=2940154172131
24 Symbols: https://www.24symbols.com/book/x/x/x?id=1854921

***

I hope you enjoyed this inside look at the making of Loving a Wild Stranger. I welcome comments and questions from readers. Be sure to follow my blog for the latest updates and visit me on social media!
Happy Reading,
Kelli A. Wilkins


ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kelli A. Wilkins is an award-winning author who has published more than 100 short stories, 19 romance novels, and 5 non-fiction books. Her romances span many genres and heat levels.
Loving a Wild Stranger was released in January 2017. This historical/pioneer romance is set in the wilds of the Michigan Territory and blends tender romance with adventure.
Kelli's third Medallion Press romance, Lies, Love & Redemption was released in September 2016. This spicy historical western is set on the Nebraska prairie in 1877.
In 2016 Kelli began re-releasing her romances previously published by Amber Quill Press. Visit her website and blog for a full title list, book summaries, and other information.
Her writing book, You Can Write—Really! A Beginner’s Guide to Writing Fiction is a fun and informative non-fiction guide based on her years of experience as a writer. It’s filled with writing exercises and helpful tips all authors can use.
If you like to be scared, check out Kelli’s horror ebooks: Dead Til Dawn and Kropsy’s Curse.
Kelli posts on her Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKelliWilkins and Twitter: www.Twitter.com/KWilkinsauthor. She also writes a weekly blog: http://kelliwilkinsauthor.blogspot.com/.
Visit her website, www.KelliWilkins.com to learn more about all of her writings, read book excerpts, reviews, and more. Readers can sign up for her newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/HVQqb.

CATCH UP WITH KELLI

Here are a few links to find Kelli & her writings on the web
Newsletter sign-up: http://eepurl.com/HVQqb

Monday, January 16, 2017

Kacey Hammell- Payback's a Bitch with CONTEST


Giveaway: For a chance to win TWO Ebook titles from Kacey’s Backlist, simply leave your email address and your favourite activity to do in the winter in a comment below. Winner will be announced January 20th.

Title: Payback’s a Bitch
Author: Kacey Hammell
Genre: Contemporary Erotic Short Story / Romance on the Go
ISBN # 9781773391410
Publisher: Evernight Publishing
Word count: 9,000
Heat Level: 3



Blurb:

No amount of braking will stop this payback from crashing and burning.

Racecar driver Lark Stevens agrees to help a close friend prove that paybacks can be a bitch. What she doesn’t expect is to fall in lust with her mark.
Set on her mission, Lark assumes the mystery man who amps up the heat and pushes her heart into overdrive is her intended target. And once they connect, getting even is the last thing on her mind.
As the heat smolders and revs from zero to sixty in mere seconds, Lark realizes she's on a crash course of emotion that no amount of braking will stop.

Warning: No-holds-barred sexual teasing, dances meant to titillate and push you over the edge, and M/F love scenes to get engines revving.

5 out of 5 Stars ~ “It’s quick. It’s dirty. It’s satisfying.” Author, SJ Maylee
5 out of 5 Stars ~~ “…a quick, hot read that will get your motor running.” Leisha, Goodreads
**Author Note: This book was previously released at another publisher. It has been revised extensively with a new title for re-release.




Excerpt : Chapter One
Are you sure you’re okay doing this? It’s a lot to ask. You haven’t done this since college.” Lark’s best friend and business partner, Eli, sounded tense on the other end of the phone.
Annoyed, Lark sighed. She’d already agreed to his request, and they’d talked it to death. “Of course I’m sure. Everything’s great. I’ll be at your office tomorrow afternoon around three.”
You know this is for fun. Just a bit of payback for Aaron.”
Yeah, yeah. I got it.”
Lark strolled to her bedroom closet, eager to see a few of her favorite things. She slid the accordion door open, anchored her phone between her cheek and shoulder, and reached behind a wad of hanging clothes to retrieve a plastic garment bag.
As she unzipped it, she smiled at the exquisite silk and leather. She hadn’t worn the more risqué skirts and tops in her closet for a couple years. Not since her last boyfriend, who hadn’t appreciated the adventure in their sex life. But she loved wearing leather or spandex. The material slid along her skin, bolstering her confidence and sexiness. Her heart rate raced from zero to sixty in anticipation. Lark shivered, hit the speaker button on her cell phone, and then dropped it on the nightstand.
Aaron won’t know what hit him. He’ll definitely understand the meaning of payback’s a bitch when I’m through with him.” Lark laid four outfits on the bed and pondered them.
Red, blue, and two black mega-short skirts with silk, midriff-baring halter tops—but which was best for a fun prank?
Just don’t hurt him.” Eli’s gruff voice hinted at concern for his longtime friend, who was about to be punked.
Don’t worry. I’ll treat him like my Chevy Impala, and shift him gentle.”
They both laughed.
She lifted the red set. Perfect. Lark got on her knees beside the bed to look underneath and reached in as far as possible. Once she touched the tops of the matching red stiletto knee-high boots, she grinned. This outfit topped off with her vibrant red wig would be the icing on the cake. Yes. She yanked the heels free from their hiding place.
There’s nothing to worry about. You go do your business with Fairfax Motors and land us a new sponsor, and I’ll take care of your good friend,” she said.
Aaron’s mentioned financially backing us, too. That’d be great for us.”
Lark sat on the side of the bed. “Great. We won’t turn away money. But—” she frowned. “You’re not pimping me out to score some green, are you?”
What? Jesus, Lark,” Eli shouted over the line. “I’d never do that and you know it. What do you take me for? We’re business partners, for fuck’s sake, and have been friends even longer than that! Hell, you’re the top female racecar driver anywhere. I’m not biased either. Besides, I’m not a lame chump, ya know.”
She laughed. “Okay. Okay. Stop groveling, you big baby. I hear ya. Go make us some moolah. I need to get pretty for tomorrow.”
I’ll call you around five to tell you how he reacted to the prank. And thanks, babe. You’re the best. I should be finished my meeting with Fairfax by then. I’ll be miles across town or I’d ask you to dinner.” Eli chuckled. “I should have set up a videotape to see Aaron’s face.”
No freaking way, buddy.” She tossed her jeans and underwear into the hamper in the corner. “I’ll give you every delicious detail. Gotta run. Ciao.”
Later.”
She ended the call, then grabbed her robe from where it hung on the bedpost and strode into the bathroom.
Lark loved this room. The white walls and floor tile sparkled in the sunlight shining from the skylight she’d had installed after moving in. It was her sanctuary—her getaway from the dust and sweat from the track, and the demands on her time—and where she did her best thinking. Plus, racing at full throttle almost every day made her shoulders tight and rigid, and she really needed to soak the tension away.
Her seventy-two-inch claw-foot bathtub had been the final nail in the coffin in her decision to buy this house. Some days she lived in her tub.
Lark set her belongings on the vanity and turned the taps to fill the deep, cast-iron oval tub. She turned and shed her favorite “Race Car Drivers Like It in Overdrive” t-shirt and sweats that Eli had bought her last year for her birthday.
She bunched her hair up and back with her fingers, tugged the long tresses into a ponytail, and then peeled off her bra and panties.
Pleased with the way the day had gone, Lark smiled. She’d accomplished the second win she needed to advance to the next round of competition. Excitement for tomorrow filled her. She and Eli always had a blast; they shared a twisted sense of humor. Pulling one over on his best friend was going to be a lot of fun: Lark was going to deliver a simple bump-and-grind lap dance that had him sweating. It’d serve Aaron right for pushing some dude on Eli six months ago, trying to prove Eli was gay. She wanted to avenge her best friend, who hadn’t yet admitted his sexuality. They’d touched on the subject a few times, but he’d adamantly refused to confirm. She’d never pushed Eli into admitting what she suspected was the truth. And the realization that Aaron had tried to force Eli into something he wasn’t ready for irked her.
Prank or not, she loved putting on her shit-kicker boots, dressing to kill, and putting on a good show.
Teaching someone a lesson or two added to the thrill of dancing sexy again and pulling off this prank. When she finished with Aaron, all he’d see was her taillights as she left him teased and confused.
Paybacks were such a bitch.


Purchase Links
Kacey’s Book Page -- https://kaceyhammell.com/bookshelf-2/paybacksabitch/ (updated as book goes live at all bookstores.)
Evernight Publishing --
http://www.evernightpublishing.com/paybacks-a-bitch-by-kacey-hammell
Amazon:
US --
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N5O7G9O
Canada --
https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B01N5O7G9O
Universal Link -- books2read.com/u/mV7Xz6




About Kacey:
Avid Reader. Romance Author. Redhead…
Canadian-born author Kacey Hammell is definitely a book-a-holic. A romance reader from a young age, she fell in love with happily ever afters.  These days, as a multi- published erotic romance author, she enjoys adding a lot of heat, sass, and emotion to the many genres she writes.

Mom of three, Kacey lives her own happily ever after with her perfect hero in Ontario, Canada.


Readers can find all my titles under the “Bookshelf” menu on my website – www.kaceyhammell.com
Please consider following me at:
Twitter – http://bit.ly/2cYpPM4
Facebook -- http://bit.ly/2dGHCvy
Facebook Reader Group – http://bit.ly/1R7Klci
And sign up for my newsletter – http://bit.ly/1QAL0iR