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Fifty Shades Darker Celebration & Valentine’s Giveaway

9 Feb

by Madeline Iva

Are you going to see FIFTY SHADES DARKER this weekend? We are!fifty-ball

Well, Elizabeth SaFleur and I are. We’ve already got our tickets and we’re taking our spouses.  Not only that–we’re holding a celebration event on Facebook to chat with y’all about the FIFTY SHADES DARKER movie.  We hope you join us!50shadesshouldersleeping

Go to our event on facebook, press the *interested* button, then tell us what you thought about the movie:

  • What did you love? The actors, characters, settings, costumes, plot?
  • How did FIFTY SHADES DARKER compared to the book and the first movie?
  • Do you love billionaire romance themes in general? Or BDSM romances in particular? ; >

We’re also blogging about fascinating aspects of the movie here.  (Don’t worry, we’ll post everything over at the fb event too.)

  • Reasons Why Billionaire Romances Are Never Going Away
  • My obsession with Jamie Dornan
  • 5 Ways In Which Real Life Millionaires Aren’t Like Us
  • Jackie Horne from ROMANCE NOVELS WITH FEMINISTS will stop by. We’re discussing where young women are going with BDSM and how this is or isn’t reflected in the movie.
  • Joey Hill shares with us how to get kinky with her 10 favorite kitchen items.

50-shades-take-2

Admittedly, not all of us at the blog are 50 Shades lovers.  You might not be either — that’s why we have other smexy Valentine’s Day posts to offer you this month.  pantiesCheck out our posts on:

BUT WAIT! THERE’S MORE!

This Valentine’s Day weekend, we’re offering a Kama Sutra giveaway from Lux Aromatica that includes massage oil, soap, a candle, and lip balm.

To enter the giveaway, hit the SUBSCRIBE button on our blog now–it’s the pink button up at the top on the right–and fill out the form.  One random winner will be chosen from central Virginia where Kerensa’s stores are located and one random winner from the nation at large. (Continental US only, please!)

We look forward to seeing you all this weekend, even if you’re just stopping by to say hi. — xoxo

wickedapprenticefinal-fjm_low_res_500x750Madeline Iva writes fantasy and paranormal romance.  Her fantasy romance, WICKED APPRENTICE, featuring a magic geek heroine, is available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and through iTunes.  Sign up for Madeline Iva news & give aways.

 

 

Join our Newsletter and Get FREE Stories All Year!

16 Jan

uzamr0jyqwi-les-andersonby G.G. Andrew 

I have some exciting news to share from the Lady Smut crew: we’re launching our newsletter! 

Starting January 21st, we’ll be sending out monthly newsletters with treats you”ll love. The newsletters will include links to our most popular posts, from robot sex to which Tv shows we can’t get enough of. There will be special profiles of our authors and sneak peeks at what they’re writing, which you won’t find on the blog. And, best of all, we’ll be offering FREE stories to our special subscriber list.

Because who doesn’t love free stories?

See the pink button at the top right of this page or go here to get these and other goodies delivered to your inbox all year.

Our free story sent in the January 21st newsletter will be Somewhere Warm, my short novella about a woman who falls for her best friend’s ex. It’s a snowbound, enemies-to-lovers tale, and a great read for a winter evening. It’s usually for sale for .99, but if you subscribe to our newsletter soon, you’ll have it in your hot little hands next weekend without paying a cent.

Here at Lady Smut, we not only know what we like, we know what you like. So subscribe and let us treat you each and every month with all things sexy and fun!

~

G.G. Andrew writes quirky romantic comedy. Sometimes it’s paranormal, sometimes it’s New Adult, sometimes it’s between two consenting adults in the real world who are arguing about grammar–but it always involves a lot of awkwardness and ill-advised kisses along the way. Her latest is the short story Girl Meets Grammarian, coming in February in the geek romance anthology Covalent Bonds from World Weaver Press.

And The Simply Sinful Winner Is….

26 Nov

…Jana Leah. Balloons released!. Ticker tape parade launched! Horns blaring! Congratulations to you. May you enjoy your basket of sinful goodies.

fireworks

Please contact Elizabeth SaFleur at elizabethlovestory@gmail.com and we’ll get your winnings to you.

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Many thanks to everyone who stopped by yesterday. We hope you enjoyed the first-ever LadySmut Simply Sinful Black Friday Event. The book excerpts will be up on the site for a while (i.e. in perpetuity), so enjoy them at any time. And, follow LadySmut, where the goodies keep coming.

Happy Holidays to you and yours.

 

Toni Morrison Says This is the Time to Regroup

10 Nov

by Madeline Iva

Does your soul hurt?

I’ve always tried to respond to shocking, unexpected set-backs with action.  It gets the body going, moves all the stress molecules around until finally those toxic chemicals drain away and at least my body feels back to normal again.  Taking action helps us feel more empowered, more in control.  It reminds us that we are strong and helps us remember the big picture.

If you want to take some kind of action, move the dial a fraction of an inch towards something better than what is happening right now, what do you do? Where do you go? Here are a few options…

From Man Repeller: Actions to Take Post Election — this link has lots of places to donate and other sources at the bottom to check out.  We’re talking donations and getting more information.

Here are 27 Little things you can do from Bustle.

More on What you can do now — from Huffpo.

Let’s not forget:

ccm_winWe now have a LATINA SENATOR!

Her victory takes place forgotten in a mine-field of blasted emotions, hopes, and prospects–but it’s still important. Catherine Cortez Masto–congrats.

People, that’s all I’ve got.

 

 

 

 

WICKED APPRENTICE: Cover Reveal

7 Oct

wickedapprenticefinal-fjm_low_res_500x750by Madeline Iva

It’s here! The WICKED APPRENTICE cover is going out into the world today.  I’m so excited. I’ll be flitting about to the various blogs that are posting the cover all day.  I’ve included the blurb and an excerpt below. Enjoy!

Genre: Fantasy Magic Romance

Zephyr, apprentice of magical arts, is having a really bad day. Under orders to capture an uncanny creature for her mistress’s latest spell, she chains up a tall, gorgeous elf in a decaying castle only to find out he’s really a wizard with potent powers over human women. Uh-oh.
 
Theo has suffered heartbreak and betrayal more than once. He’s got a plan to escape, and when he does, he’s taking the curvy little apprentice with him. Her seductive curiosity about all things elvish makes his heart race, driving him into a sexual frenzy. He’s vowed never to unleash his powers of enchantment upon a human woman—yet while she kisses and teases him, longing for an elf romance, his fae side is slipping out of control.
 
Their world overturns when Zephyr unleashes a curse involving two magic rings. Under its spell, she becomes a mighty sorceress while the elf-wizard who loves her becomes her apprentice. As Zephyr works to turn the brooding, mistrustful elf into the hero the people need, Theo must find a way to contain Zephyr’s new powers before her wild magic destroys them all.
This book is chock full of wizards and sorcerers. If you love castle romances, all things elvish, and can-do heroines, then you’ll relish this novel.Pre-order a copy of WICKED APPRENTICE today!Excerpt:

“They all called you Prin,” he said at last.

“Yes.” He wasn’t going to mention how they behaved. Thank you. She took a bigger breath.

“That’s… an odd name.” His Berbainwick was strangely accented, his words all stretched out instead of clipped off. He kind of gargled them sometimes at the back of the throat. To her ears the language had never sounded half so charming before.

“It’s a nickname,” she explained, and then stopped, not willing to explain more. Touchy ground here.

“What does it stand for?” he asked. His voice was lilting and gentle, another tone entirely from before. “Princess?”

“Bet you say that to all the girls,” Prin replied. In fact, it was an abbreviation for ‘apprentice’ and a way of making fun of Hulgetta’s speech. She wasn’t going to tell him that, of course. Everything about him was gentle and refined. She kinda wanted to muss him up a little bit.

“I said nothing to them at all.” He looked puzzled.

She wrinkled her nose. “Never mind.”

“You are a princess then?” he said. He asked her a question in a language she didn’t understand. She looked down at her calloused fingertips and didn’t reply. Let him think what he liked. The silence stretched on. She looked up and his attractiveness hit her again like a physical blow.

His eyes had gone dark again, and he was a vision of sensitive torment. She felt herself involuntarily reaching towards him. Then, alas, the eyes changed back, and she regained a modicum of self-control. She stood up and paced around the cell, her heart still thudding about inside her chest.

“Who has imprisoned me?” he asked. “A murderous wizard? An evil enchantress?”

I did. “Technically speaking, she’s a sorceress,” Prin replied. “You don’t remember?”

He sniffed at the water in the tumbler.

“It’s not poisoned or tainted,” she said. “I freshened it with herbs myself. See?” She drank from the cup and then held it out to him to show him the sage leaves and borage blossoms. “Perfectly safe.” He took a tentative sip on his own, letting her hold the cup for him. The feel of his fingers sliding over hers. Her eyes widened, but he moved abruptly, pulling the cup away. As if he didn’t want to touch her.

“Thank you,” he said, not looking at her. Then he must have changed his mind about something. He looked up at her again, his eyes flickering black. “I thank you,” he said, this time with a tone of grave respect.

“You’re welcome,” she said, using the same formal tone. And did you know you’re smoking hot?

Lying there pliant, helpless, and half naked, he was so scrumptious her body itched to crawl on top of him. Moreover, all her fairy dust was up and screaming for him, and that just never happened to her with a guy. Ever.

She put the tumbler back on the wooden tray with the pitcher and stood there twisting her fingers up in her skirt. Nervous. Her mind strained for something to say. Her body looked for another excuse to bend over near him and reveal her cleavage. Get a grip, woman.

“And what are you called?” she asked, forbidding her fingers to play with her braids. The traitorous fingers took to the lacings on her corset instead, and she bit her lips a little to make them red. Where was her apprentice side? The scholarly side that wanted to learn? Pathetic.

“Princess, help me,” he whispered.

How was she ever going to refuse him anything when his eyes were all big and noble, yet softly luminous? She had felt loyal to Hulgetta. ‘Had’ being the operative word. Her loyalty was wobbling, big time. This was so wrong.

“Are you okay?” she said, filled with dread and concern. She leaned over the bed and put her hand on his brow again. Yes. It was warm now. She felt his cheek. It was hot. Spell all gone. Reluctantly, she took her hand away.

“Can you move your legs?”

He took her hand again and placed it back on his cheek, his lips parting a little. She went a little gooey and just stared at him, unable to think or move. He took that hand and kissed it.

“Help me escape.”

She stood up straight, breathless. Whoa. There it was. Bright needle-thin fear suddenly pierced the bubble.

“It would mean my life,” she said, simply.

Hope you check out my novel, and thank you all from the bottom of my heart for following us at Lady Smut!  

Meet The Author:

zz-madelineMadeline Iva writes paranormal, fantasy, and contemporary erotic romance. Bitten by romance as a teen, she quit her day job in 2009 to start writing full time. She started Love Fest, a day of romance panels at Virginia Festival of the Book and co-founded LadySmut.com. Her work “Sexsomnia” is included in THE LADY SMUT BOOK OF DARK DESIRES published by Harper Impulse.

Friend Madeline on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/madeline.iva
Follow Madeline on Twitter: @madelineiva — https://twitter.com/madelineiva
Madeline obsesses over Pinterest here: https://www.pinterest.com/madelineiva/
Madeline Blogs every Thur & Sat: http://www.madelineiva.comhttp://www.ladysmut.com

Girls Making Passes At Sexy Guys Wearing Glasses

28 Sep
Oh, but only if he didn't have glasses - said no one, ever.

Oh, but only if he didn’t have glasses – said no one, ever.

By Elizabeth Shore

We’ve got a double sexy celebration this week as we’re kicking off the release of our own Alexa Day’s revamped Illicit Impulse. Why double sexy? Because one, this book’s got a hot scientist – and Lady Smut readers know how much we love those smoldering brainiacs. Just ask Madeline Iva. She blogged about it here way back in 2013. And part 2 of this sexy duo celebration? Alexa’s particular scientist also wears glasses. Hot doggie! Grab me a fan while I swoon.

We all remember that silly saying about guys not making passes at girls who wear glasses, right? Well, as far as I’m concerned it’s all a steamin’ pile of hooey. Case in point: look at the hotness factor of the sexy librarian. What guy can resist a babe wrapped in brains? Bunned up hair comes tumbling down, horn-rimmed glasses reveal piercing baby blues just waiting to cast a come-hither look. Methinks any guy worth his salt would both hither AND cum. 😉

Same holds true for guys and glasses. They’re f**king sexy, a known fact that glasswear designers have glommed on to for years. Glasses are a little bit like wrapping on a gift. They have a unique way of hiding the present beneath them, which in the case of hot men are the gorgeous eyes behind their Warby Parkers. Glasses tease us, make us want to get into a position to take them off, tossing away the wrapping to get at the gift.

My contemporary erotic romance, Hot Bayou Nights, also features a smoldering scientist (who, just for the record, also has an amazing ass) whose gorgeous peepers are framed with glasses. To wit, when heroine Carla first meets Jackson she sees “locks of his disheved hair, dark brown and on the long side, brushed across his forehead that he swept back with a gesture both impatient and automatic. In the same movement he used a finger to push up round, frameless glasses that had slipped down his nose. Behind the glasses were blue, piercing eyes. Anyone see a problem there? Me neither.

Glasses have gone through waves of coolness, dorkiness, cool dorkiness, etc. The ultimate look of an awkward clod came by way of giant, thick-lensed, taped-up glasses that made the wearer’s eyes bug out like a fly’s. But as that old cigarette ad used to trumpet, “you’ve come a long way, baby.” Such is true for glasses. No longer relegated to “loser” status, glasses in fact are chic, sophisticated, status symbols of knowledge. They silently taunt and tease those who look upon the wearer, daring us to imagine what’s below that brainy exterior.

As I referenced above, the sexy librarian is just the kind of symbolic tease I’m talking about, at least for the men. But what about us gals? Who’s our dork-turned hunk? What buttoned-up, straight-laced guy turns into superman when those spectacles come off? Oh wait…

Yes indeedy, it’s superman himself to our rescue! Off come the glasses, away slips the awkard body language and shy stuttering. Beneath those giant specs are giant pecs! Well, anyway, you know what I mean.

If there’s a negative behind glasses it’s that they do, in fact, obscrure the wearer’s eyes, and eyes are an oh-so-sexy part of any guy. Eyes are expressive, saying so much without saying a thing. And when a man’s eyes are dark with desire and focused entirely on you, it doesn’t matter how cool his glasses might be. They’re coming off.

In the meantime, if you’ve got a hankering for a hot brainiac, check out Illicit Impulse. You’ll never think of scientists the same way again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Play Ball! Baseball Romances For Your Fourth of July

4 Jul

tumblr_nfwjx2gwUO1sj9ufho1_400by Madeline Iva

What are you doing this Fourth of July? I am gnoshing on my fav fourth of July candy: dark chocolate with pop rocks and chilies.  Yes, it’s delicious! It pops in your mouth, which is fun, even though it sounds so dirty.

We also tried making a cherry clafouti to celebrate this year–though maybe that’s more appropriate for Bastille Day, since it’s a French dessert.

The fire works started early in our neighborhood–and for the last several nights our dog is hiding between my feet, or under the covers, poor boy.  😦  See his adorable little face peeping out from under the covers here on my Facebook profile.

As for the rest of today, I’ve finished mourning the Red Sox’s abysmal record and I’m now finding solace in perusing some baseball romances.  The covers are so wholesome they hurt.  Check these out and we at Lady Smut hope you have a SIMPLY SMASHING FOURTH OF JULY! (We’re taking the rest of the week off, btw.)

Click to buy.

Click to buy.

Here’s a baseball romance: CALLING IT by Jen Doyle:

After a near career-ending car accident and with paparazzi surrounding his penthouse, all-star catcher Nate Hawkins can only think of one place to go: home. But when he finds his old apartment occupied by a half-naked woman wielding a baseball bat, he’s not sure what to think…except that maybe his luck has finally changed for the better.

Librarian Dorie Donelli never thought she’d get to meet her fantasy man in person—much less while she’s wearing her bathrobe. To her surprise, her nearly naked run-in with Nate leads to more unclothed encounters. But Dorie is sure their fling is only temporary. As long as she remembers he’ll be gone once his life gets back on track, she won’t get hurt. In the meantime, she throws herself into enjoying their three weeks together before he has to report for spring training and go back to his old life.

Click to pre-order.

Click to pre-order.

Jen Doyle also has another baseball romance, CALLED UP, that’s available for preorder and comes out in August. LOVE this cover!

If those suggestions don’t scratch your baseball itch, there’s a whole mess o’ baseball romances at GOODREADS, to check out, including romances by JILL SHALVIS, JACI BURTON, MINDY KLASKY, BELLE ANDRE and others.

Good hunting!

 

 

 

 

 

Sexy Saturday Excerpt: Alexa Day’s “Passing Through”

25 Jun
If you like kinky stories with military heroes, click to preorder. Like right now.

If you like kinky stories with military heroes, click to preorder. Like right now.

By Alexa Day

Happy weekend, sexy people! Learned colleague Madeline Iva has allowed me to stage a Sexy Saturday takeover so I can hit you with a lick of excerpty goodness from my novella, “Passing Through.” It’s one of 22 stories featured in the box set, Hero to Obey, from Blushing Books. Joining me in the collection are Sierra Cartwright, Selena Kitt, Desiree Holt, along with Lady Smut guests Tabitha Black and Lee Savino. If you like your stories kinky and your heroes in uniform, you want to get involved with this big box.

My contribution, “Passing Through,” is a femdom-themed story featuring bar owner Gigi Deane and Noah Monroe, the former Army Ranger who’s spending the summer working as her barback. Gigi likes her men tall, hot, and obedient, and Noah certainly fits the bill. But he’s an employee, so he’s off limits. Putting him on his knees would be kind of inappropriate.

Right?

At this point in the story, Gigi and Noah cross the line between fantasy and reality. Enjoy!

***

The wooden patio on top of the bar offered little in the way of scenic views. It faced the back of the building, not the beach, and from its ancient Adirondack chair, she could look down into the parking lot and the Dumpster. Beyond her building and the hair salon, the neighborhood crept up the hill into the suburbs. She could make out a couple of beach house backyards. Muffled rhythm thumped from a screened-in porch in the distance.

Heavy steps on the creaky wooden stairs captured her attention.

“Here you are.” Noah’s voice liquefied something low in her belly. “I didn’t know where you’d got to.”

“I came up for a little fresh air. I thought I’d be back by the time you finished.”

He came out onto the patio, making the boards protest beneath his weight. “Well, it’s all done downstairs. You need anything else?”

Gigi breathed deeply of the hot summer air. That question.

“No, I’m sure it’s fine. I hope I didn’t keep you too long; I’m sure you have places to be tonight.”

“Me?” Noah chuckled. “No, I’m not going anywhere.”

“No?” She gestured at the other chair with the bottle. “You want to sit down for a minute?”

Noah dropped onto the other Adirondack chair with a barely suppressed groan.

“That’s a blessed feeling, isn’t it?” She leaned back in the chair. “Sitting down after barbacking a double shift.”

“God, yes.” He stretched his arms over his head, arching his back until the joints popped.

“You want a beer?” She glanced over the shoulder toward the mini-fridge. “Might have two more back there.”

His body reclined in the chair. “No, I’m good.”

“You sure? Not even to thank you for your service?”

He lifted one hand toward her, as if to ward off incoming beer. “No thanks necessary.”

She turned to watch him in repose. She could hardly make him out in the dark, but the sound of his sigh squeezed her heart. Their conversation in the storage room arose in her memory.

No one went to Afghanistan for free beer.

They looked out into the darkness. Firecrackers popped in the distance, and a lone bottle rocket arced through the sky in a shower of sparks.

“I guess we should go,” she said.

He rose from the awkward chair with ease and offered her his hand. She slid her hand into his warm, work-roughened one and let him pull her to her feet. Inches away from him now, she felt that electricity again, a heavy thickness in the air between them like the heat before a thunderstorm.

This time, she gave in to the magnetic force.

Her fingers resting lightly in his, she swayed toward him. Her arm wound around his shoulder and she lifted her face to his an instant before his mouth settled on hers.

She pressed her palm to the back of his neck, where the summer heat and hard work had made the skin sticky with sweat. She claimed his mouth with her tongue. The perfect satiny skin of his lips gave way to the heat of his mouth, and her tongue traced the back of his teeth, the hard shelf above and behind them. He released her hand, freeing her to embrace him. His arms wound around her waist and he pushed into her kiss, taking her mouth boldly.

Yes.

She lifted her chest up to meet his. The contact with his hard body brought her nipples to taut peaks.

She took his face in both hands and pushed herself just far enough away to breathe.

“That night, in the storage,” she whispered. “Did I imagine that?”

He shook his head. “No.”

She rocked her pelvis against his. “Am I crazy for wanting to act on that?”

“You don’t seem crazy to me.”

“Good.” She took a step away from him and traced a line down his chest with her fingernail. “Take off your shirt.”

She slid her hands into her back pockets. For a moment, they stood there in the dark, watching each other in silence.

“Come on,” she said. “Take it off.”

He crossed his arms in front of him, grabbing the bottom of his shirt and then peeling it off. Smoothly, he pulled it over his head, and he stood, holding it loosely in one hand. He watched her with an enticing mixture of caution and defiance in his eyes.

Gigi’s insides fluttered with an excitement that she hoped her face didn’t reveal. She’d expected some measure of hesitation from Noah, if not outright resistance. She’d thought it would take more than a simple command to bend him to her will. And yet here he was, bare chested, waiting for her instructions.

Her fingertips found his chest again, and she lightly raked her nails down to his stomach. His abs twitched at her touch.

Ticklish. Nice.

She made her way behind him now, watching as the muscles in his strong back went taut. She could see the column of his neck in stark relief in the dim light.

Damn.

Wary, he turned to look at her over his shoulder. She spread her fingers over a big shoulder blade to reassure him, the way one might try to calm a skittish horse.

“Is this a little weird?” Her voice was almost a whisper.

“A little,” he answered. His mouth curled into a half-smile.

She wound her arms around him, pressed her body against his back. Her hands smoothed the coarse hair that dusted his chest.

She longed to touch her lips, her tongue, to the base of his thick neck. To feel the bone there. Caress his earlobe with her mouth to see if he was ticklish there as well.

Not yet. Not now.

Instead, she whispered to him. “Do you like it?”

His head fell back toward hers, and his chest expanded into her hands. His surrender sent a thrill surging through her.

“Mmm,” he said, his voice rumbling through her. “I like it.”

***

You know, the Fourth of July is on its way — isn’t it the perfect time for hot military-themed sexytimes? Vote yes. Click to preorder, and all 22 stories will be coming at you on Tuesday.

I’ll see you again then.

Follow Lady Smut. We’ll make sure you’re ready for the summer.

Embracing the Dark: An Interview with Tabitha Black

14 Jun
If you like kinky stories with military heroes, click to preorder. Like right now.

If you like kinky stories with military heroes, click to preorder. Like right now.

By Alexa Day

So here’s the big news I wanted to share with you last week: I’m really excited and honored to formally announce that I’m one of 22 authors contributing to a box set called Hero to Obey. The collection, which releases June 28, features military heroes and more kink than you can shake a flogger at, and Lady Smut guests Sierra Cartwright and Lee Savino are also participating. The best thing about working with so many wonderful authors? Each of them brings a distinct flavor to the many varieties of kink and the military men who like it naughty. (If you’re down with spanking, you will definitely want a big piece of this box set, by the way.)

As the set was coming together, I got a peek at Tabitha Black’s story, “Understanding the Enemy,” which sets a dark erotic romance against a futuristic, dystopian backdrop. The heroine, Lena, is a resistance fighter captured by the enemy and interrogated by Blaze, who has plenty of ways to get what he wants out of her. It’s a powerful, sexual tale with compelling characters and an intriguing setting, and it delivers plenty of darkly erotic goodness for eager readers.

I have a thing for dark stories. My imagination is drawn to something about them — the danger that calls to the heroine, the hero’s depraved desires, all those delicious secrets. Not long ago, I shared an abduction fantasy involving Tom Hiddleston, Mark Strong, Jason Statham, and the Jaguar F Coupe. So I knew I’d be down with the darkness! Still, I was curious about what draws so many readers to this growing subgenre of romance — and what might be keeping them away. Tabitha indulged all my questions, and I’m so excited to share our conversation with you today!

But first, I have to hit you with an excerpt. That’s what friends do. Before you start reading — the bullet is a vibrator.

Lena was ready to scream. She’d been mentally prepared for anything—anything but this constant, torturous state of aching arousal and blatant humiliation.

She was also bitterly regretting having asked to have her blindfold removed. She’d hoped that the sight of her tormentor would help; that seeing the gargoyle who held her very life in his hands might go some way towards tempering the helpless lust he was inducing purely by the tone in his voice.

She couldn’t have been more wrong.

The man—Blaze—was attractive. No, more than that, he was gorgeous. At first she’d been unaccustomed to the light and had been able to make out nothing more than his silhouette; a broad-shouldered man in a dark green militia uniform… but then, like a Polaroid developing, she was able to take in more and more detail.

The perfect shape of his closely shaved head.

The thick, dark brows, one of which was bisected by a neat scar, the classic but slightly broken Greek nose, the wide, mocking mouth. The glittering onyx eyes.

And then, when he’d grinned, a dimple in his left cheek.

What the fuck kind of torturer has a dimple?

Lena’s breath had caught in her throat and she’d almost asked him to put the blindfold back on when she realized that this man had seen, examined and watched every last inch of her—and, worse, that she was still lying naked and spread-eagled on a table in front of him as he looked down at her with an odd expression in his eyes.

Greg had never warned her about that eventuality.

And now she was still on that fucking table and Blaze was still watching her—albeit from the next room. Not that that made much of a difference; it was almost as though she could sense his presence. She could certainly feel every single excruciating tingle that bullet deep inside her pussy was shooting through her core. Every time she came close to calling out, to begging him to stop, it shut off… only to resume its infernal humming again a short while later.

He wasn’t really going to do this all night, was he?

LS: Capture, interrogation, sexual torture … that’s absolutely my cup of tea. But do you find that readers are conflicted about dark erotica? Are people uncomfortable about wanting to read it and wanting to love it?

TB: I think there are readers in any genre who are uncomfortable about wanting to read about – or write about – it, be it spanking, gay/lesbian, ageplay – or even ‘straightforward’ erotica, so there are undoubtedly those who feel conflicted about darker, edgier stuff, perhaps more so than other genres.

I think the reasons why are different, though. Women are taught from childhood that a man raising his hand to a woman is wrong, that letting a man ‘be the boss’ is wrong, that any time a man exerts his physical dominance over her, it’s wrong, abusive and so on. And of course, if that ever happens in real life without consent, it is undoubtedly so. But for many women – like me – there is freedom in submission. There is something inherently sexy about having no control whatsoever. And there are many women who are turned on when they’re afraid. There seems to be some kind of link between fear and arousal, as well as similar physiological responses.

However, if you’re a woman who admits to reading and enjoying dark, capture erotica, you fear being judged by those who don’t seem able to distinguish between fiction and real life, between fantasy and reality. People assume that just because you enjoy the stories, you condone that sort of behaviour in real life. And it’s unfair, because erotica is the only genre in which that happens. No-one who reads James Patterson or Thomas Harris is told they must think killing people is okay if they enjoy ‘those kinds of books’, so why apply that logic to this genre?

LS: What draws dark erotica readers to the genre, and deeper into it?

TB: I’m sure it depends on the reader – and on the story. Personally, I can say that there are two main elements which appeal to me: the lack of control and freedom in submission I mentioned before, and then there’s the suspense/horror element which fascinates me.

There are many, many erotica genres but most of them are happy, loving, consensual, and often almost toothache-inducingly sweet. But life isn’t sweet. And there can sometimes be a lack of tension in ‘boy meets girl, they both fall in love and live happily ever after’ stories, even if they are erotic. One thing you’re guaranteed in well written dark erotica is tension; internal – and often external – conflict. Not only is the heroine often horrified at what’s happening to her, she’s equally horrified at the fact that her body is responding, that she’s enjoying it. And dark erotica often has more interesting settings; science fiction, fantasy worlds, dystopian—a refreshing alternative to the more traditional erotica settings.

Finally, I think there’s a definite element of pushing boundaries. Readers can get jaded. There are only so many ways to tell a spanking story, or to describe ‘vanilla’ sex. The ‘shock’ value wears off, as does the excitement. Dark erotica is a natural continuation of that… it’s a way for authors to delve deeper and write something new and interesting for them, and it’s something fresh and exciting for readers to pick up when they’re in the mood to be captivated, shocked, or, yes, aroused.

LS: This might be an amateur hour question, but is a happy ending always guaranteed in dark erotica and dark erotic romance?

TB: There’s nothing ‘amateur hour’ about that question! It’s tricky. Romance publishers often won’t accept manuscripts unless there’s a ‘happy ever after’ or at least a ‘happy for now’ ending. Romance readers are used to it. There are also still absolute no-nos, as well, even though these things happen too often in real life; cheating is a prime example. The hero can do anything he wants to the heroine sexually or physically, but the minute his focus wanders to another woman, there’s outrage on the part of the reader.

I guess I’m trying to say that no matter what genre, including dark, there are set rules. And authors know that if they break or even bend those rules, they risk negatively impacting not only their book sales, but also their reputation with fans. Whether or not they want to do that, including denying readers that longed-for HEA, is ultimately up to them, but I think most of them are too scared to try. And for good reason: no-one wants to disappoint the readers.

LS: Have you ever gone too dark with a story? Have you surprised a publisher … or yourself?

TB: I’ve absolutely surprised myself but never a publisher – yet. In real life, I’m a masochist as well as a submissive, and my partner is a very sadistic Dominant. He’s introduced me to all manner of play forms which I’ve never seen in books; even in dark erotica. The author in me wants to incorporate all these things into my work, but I do fear many of them would be considered ‘too dark’ for the readers. (Not to mention my publisher!)

Having said that, I do have one or two things in progress where I am starting to push the envelope – just a little bit – and depending on how those are received, I may then decide to take it further. ‘Understanding The Enemy’ was one such experiment, and I’ll be very interested to see the reviews.

LS: What inspired the dystopian setting of “Understanding the Enemy”?

TB: I was actually born in Germany, and even though the Berlin wall fell almost 27 years ago, the after-effects are still very much in evidence. I was nine years old when the wall was torn down, and my mother was watching it on television and crying. I didn’t understand what it was all about; and when she told me how there was this wall, and how people on one side had to live under such tyranny and poverty, whereas on the other side life was far, far better, but if anyone tried to get across it, they risked being killed, it had a deep and profound impact on me. When I was looking for a setting for what I knew would be an interrogation story, it seemed like a good starting point. What if, in the future, after a catastrophic event, mankind had to ‘resettle’ and something like that happened again? The story just progressed from there.

LS: What makes the military hero a good fit for dark stories?

TB: Aside from the fact that a creative author can put a dark twist on almost any theme, I think military men are a great fit because there are a lot of parallels between a good Dominant and a good military man: a commanding presence, rigid self-discipline, analytical thinking, physical strength and fitness, loyalty, a protective streak and so on. You combine that with the fact that no simpering, weak coward ever wants to join the military, and you have a recipe for a sexy hero.

I also think that things are done in wartime… there are scenarios like capture, invasion, interrogation and so on… which lend themselves wonderfully to the external conflict and tension necessary for a dark, edgy story.

There’s this sense that military men/women are tough and have seen/done it all; they’re not likely to faint at the first sight of blood, and there’s an element of danger involved, as well.

If I may, I’ll give you a little example: which is more likely to get your heart racing and your panties wet; being pushed against the wall and ‘manhandled’ by a reedy college student, or by a man who’s been to war, has done things you can barely imagine, who has muscles bulging out of his shirt and whose hands on your body can either bring you to extremes of pleasure or extremes of pain?

I know which I’d choose – not that I have anything against college students.

LS: “Understanding the Enemy” is a great story for people wanting to explore their feelings about darker stories; Lena and Blaze are fantastic, relatable characters whose lives and surroundings have given them a bit of a dark side. What other stories and authors would you recommend for readers wanting to dip their fingers into these shadowy worlds?

TB: Aw, thank you for the compliment! There are actually a few authors currently taking the dark genre by storm, and I can highly recommend all of them. These include Jennifer Bene, Sophie Kisker, some of Alta Hensley’s works, and Addison Cain’s Alpha’s Claim series is currently soaring up the Amazon charts. Deservedly so; she writes wonderful, conflicted and relatable characters in a truly dark and evil world – and she pushes the reader’s boundaries, which I very much admire.

***

Convinced yet? Head on over to preorder your copy of Hero to Obey at the special price of 99 cents. On June 28, you’ll get my story, Tabitha’s story, and 20 other super hot reads to add extra steam to your summer.

And follow Lady Smut. We read without boundaries.

Alexa Day writes erotica and erotic romance with heroines who are anything but innocent and fictional worlds where strong, smart women discover excitement, adventure, and exceptional sex. A former bartender, one-time newspaper reporter, and recovering attorney, she likes her stories with just a touch of the inappropriate, and her literary mission is to stimulate the intellect and libido of her readers.

Sekrit Project No More

4 Apr

by Kiersten Hallie Krum

For months now, I’ve been posting on Facebook and The Twitter snippets about my #SekritProject, partly as a way to publicize an upcoming project I was not yet cleared to speak about publicly, and partly as a means of accountability to finish the damn project. It worked!

Well now, I’m thrilled to be able to announce that my debut novel, Wild on the Rocks, will be published on April 14th as part of the launch of New York Times bestselling author Roxanne St. Claire’s Barefoot Bay Kindle Worlds!

red head head tiltBut wait! THERE’S MORE!

Today is the official cover reveal day for Wild on the Rocks on Roxanne St. Claire’s Facebook page.

BUT we’ve decided to give all you lovely Lady Smutters a first look!

WildOnTheRocks-KindleWorldsSize-PROMO

Bet I know what you’re all thinking right now…

el gato 2

I KNOW!

I’ll be on Roxanne St. Claire’s Facebook page all day today (that’s Monday for any of you reading this post later in the week), answering questions about Wild on the Rocks and Barefoot Bay. That’s where you’ll also find a description of Wild on the Rocks to wet your whistle until release day in less than two weeks.

Back in February, I had a chance to feature Roxanne here at Lady Smut for a chat about her newest release in Barefoot Bay, Barefoot with a Bad Boy. Now, she’s opened up that world for other authors to create unique stories set on the fictional island of Mimosa Key, Florida. Lady Smutters are known for their inquisitive natures, so be sure to check out the press release that fills in all the details about the Barefoot Bay Kindle Worlds program.

I’m so delighted to be able to share this news with all you loyal readers. I hope you’ll stick with me and take a wild, sexy ride in Barefoot Bay. We’ll be sure to update the Lady Smut shop page with buy links as soon as they become available. In the meantime, put a tickler in your calendar for April 14th, my very first book birthday!

And follow Lady Smut. We’re the naughty kind of wild.

Singer, writer, editor, traveler, tequila drinker, and cat herder, Kiersten Hallie Krum avoids pen names since keeping her multiple personalities straight is hard enough work. She writes smart, sharp, and sexy romantic suspense. Her debut romantic suspense novel Wild on the Rocks will release on April 14, 2016. Visit her website at www.kierstenkrum.com and find her regularly over sharing on various social media via @kierstenkrum.

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