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Transgender Romance, Anyone?

8 Dec
Andreja Pejic--a globally successful trans model.

Andreja Pejic–a globally successful trans model.

by Madeline Iva

In a wonderfully reassuring moment on Facebook — yes, I *know* how strange that sounds — I was in the middle of a discussion about transgender romances.  They’re out there.  And if you’re looking for something new when it comes to contemporary romance–something a little m/m but not–transgender romance might just be the ticket.

How do you come out to your folks that you're trans? "Mom, Dad, there's this really funny TV show I'd like you both to watch," could be your conversation starter.

How do you come out to your folks that you’re trans? “Mom, Dad, there’s this really funny TV show I’d like you both to watch,” could be your conversation starter.

Meanwhile, I would consider the last year to be “Year of the Trans”.  From Laverne Cox to Transparent, to using bathrooms, we’ve had more exposure and acceptance of this tiny group of individuals than ever before.url

With that increase in recognition and acceptance, of course the romance community has swelled to include romances starring trans hero/heroines.  HERE’S A GOODREADS LINK TO SOME TRANS ROMANCES you can scroll through. The descriptions at first may not SOUND like the romances are typical m/f.  But read closely and follow the reviews–you’ll see they are a bit more wiggly and complicated–breathing fresh life into familiar romance tropes.

Trans models are rocking the fashion world--which seems totally open to anyone and everyone--as long as they're skinny. It's a twisted kind of radical acceptance.

Trans models are rocking the fashion world–which seems totally open to anyone and everyone–as long as they’re skinny. It’s a twisted kind of radical acceptance, I guess.

For my part, I’ve become fascinated with trans model Andreja Pejic and this interview with Madeira Darling got me all revved up imagining a trans-sexual hijinks vampire plot that my obsessive brain will not leave alone.

Also, G.G. Andrews has started this whole #ReadHotter challenge at Lady Smut.  Trans romance really fits the bill for stretching my reading boundaries–how about you?  ; >

Carry on my wayward kittens! And if you’re bored and looking for sparkly-bright distractions, follow us at Lady Smut where we purr and snarl over all things fascinating in the world.

wickedapprenticefinal-fjm_high_res_1800x2700Madeline 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.

A Wicked Little Excerpt: Our Simply Sinful Giveaway Event Continues

25 Nov

by Madeline Iva

Like booze, books, and bath bombs? Then you’re in luck!  This weekend is our Lady Smut Simply Sinful Black Friday Event. Here’s an excerpt for your reading pleasure. (Don’t forget to comment on this or any other post from today to be entered in our giveaway. See details below.)

This snippet is from Wicked Apprentice. (Book one in the Wicked Magic Series).

BLURB: 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. 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.

Got sexy elves?

Got sexy elves?

~~~~~Excerpt~~~~~

He whispered. “Will you help me?”

“Yes,” she whispered back. There. She had said it. She had committed herself. The walls of her loyalty to Hulgetta toppled. All that was left was a healthy fear of her mistress and a strong sense of self-preservation. But she was obsessed with the elf man before her.  It didn’t feel right. To promise him anything.  To be two-faced with her mistress. In some measure she felt she owed the sorceress. The woman had taught her magic, given her room and board. It was a debt.

A thought suddenly occurred to her.  What if to get the elf-man free from that manacle she had to cut off his hand? Her stomach turned over and her fingers turned to ice. She pressed them into his.

His eyes changed. He looked down into her face and down at her mouth. Those eyes were black. She could see her own face in them. Oh, what was this? A thick syrup of languorousness poured over her head. Her skin and lips wanted to whisper to him.  Her mind was strangely hushed.

“The book. Bring it to me.” His voice held a compelling tone.

“Yes.”

His eyes. They could suck in galaxies. Under their gaze all her worry leached away, like a puddle dried up in the sun. At the same time her loins were licked by that mouth and the steady hammer of his gaze bent towards hers.

Like dark, slow treacle dumped upon her head, a sense of bonding with him enfolded her. Thick and full, it poured down her throat, trickled across her breasts, and down the center of her core. She stood under his gaze, but really she was swallowed whole in it.

He bent to kiss her, their mouths opening slowly, eyes closing, his chain clanking as she yielded softly and fully to him. He pulled her up by her bodice, his hands high around her waist, one hand coming round to pull her hair aside, letting his lips rove across her neck. She felt an involuntary clenching deep down and pulled his hands lower, towards her hips.

He pulled her up against him. She was falling into a thick featherbed of need. His long fingers held her face upwards, as she basked in his touch. Yet there was a touch of despair in his desire. She drank it in, ready to defy it, her soul suddenly brave. She’d die saving him if that’s what it took.

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His head hanging above her own, he watched her clear eyes grow heavy. He watched as her irises shot wide, becoming vulnerable, her expression filling with a delicious resignation. He held her arms, letting one slender inch between his body and hers.

“Bring the book to me. You’ll return it quickly. Hulgetta will never know,” he said, the gold cuff rattling against the bar, holding it to the wall.

“She’ll know if you escape.” She spoke like a woman asleep, like someone resigned to her fate.

He let her go. In theory, her will was not entirely her own. He had never deliberately tried to enthrall anyone before. Was it working? He had no idea.

Among his mother’s people he’d be put to death for even trying. The mindless instinct to survive had acted before he could stop it. Now it was done.

She was staring at his naked chest, and the elf in him wanted it that way. Crave me. He relished the challenge she presented. She was under his thrall. He loved the feel of their agony mixing with desire. He wanted to feel his powers wrapped about around her, protecting her. He wanted her to struggle, try to resist, and discover all her will to resist was gone.

Stop. He forced himself to look away. He held onto her shoulders and, with a hard inner twist on himself, gave up the thrall. His eyes ceased to throb. He was back, the world hollow and dim, a pale shadow of what he felt in his elfin state.

“If she discovers I’ve taken a book from her lair—”

“She won’t. You’re too clever.” His eyes dragged across hers. He felt the slender skein of magical connection. “You’ll be careful.” She left the cell.

He fought the urge to call her back. He was the one she should fear the most. He was cursed, unlucky—a betrayer with dark secrets she couldn’t even guess. Then she was gone.

He let his vision darken, felt the fae-half pulsing inside and this time he did not fight it.

He stalked back and forth the short three paces his leash allowed. Every bit of the elf inside him wanted to fight. If it could not fight Hulgetta, then his fae side wanted to take that pretty little maid apart inch by inch until she died from the tormented pleasure he’d give her.

Want to read more? Find Wicked Apprentice at major, online retailers for just 99 cents. Includes one hot elf, one magic geek heroine, and a lot of sexy magical mayhem.

Madeline 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.

 
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Here’s how you win the giveaway: Leave a comment below–or on any post published today, November 25 and you’re entered for the Simply Sinful basket of book goodness.

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Giveaway closes at midnight (Eastern), November 25, 2016.

Next up in the LadySmut Simply Sinful Reader Event is Alexa Day at 3 p.m.

 

I’ve Got a Plan & It’s Just Not That Complicated

17 Nov

by Madeline Iva

Sometimes you need to retreat, huddle up, hunker down, and regroup.  For introverts like me, this is actually our natural state of being.  The thing is–you gotta have a plan.

I love the part in BOURNE LEGACY, where Jeremy Renner (yum!) needs some information from Rachel Weisz who is sputtering over her suddenly-everyone-wants-to-kill-me reality.  Jeremy Renner cuts through her confusion and says, “Now I’ve got a plan, and it’s just not that complicated.  What I’m going to do is wait for the next person to come and kill you.  Maybe they can help me.”  Well, I’ve got a plan, Lady Smut readers, and it’s just not that complicated.

  1. There’s a romance plot spinning in my brain.
  2. I’m going to binge write all weekend long and get as much of it out of my head and splatted onto the page as I can.

That’s the good kind of binge, of course.

westworld

I’m going to try HBO NOW to watch Westworld. This is their new streaming subscription. (Like Netflix only all HBO.) First month is free…

Then there are the other kinds of binging.  Hey, let’s face it, I’m a binge-y kind of woman.  If a little is good, a lot is better.  My favorite types of binges: TV, movies, food, and romance novels.  But first, I will be productive.  I will lay down five thousand words a day (eek!)  and only then will I reach out to find other forms of comfort.

TV Series to Binge:

  • Westworld
  • The Crown
  • Luke Cage

    Dr. Who? Who knew Matt Smith could play the perfect consort?

    Dr. Who? Who knew Matt Smith could play the perfect consort?

At the movie theatre:

  • DR. STRANGE
  • ARRIVAL
  • FANTASTIC BEASTS
  • MISS PEREGRINE’S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN

    Hey look--it's Jeremy Renner again!

    Hey look–it’s Jeremy Renner again!

Meanwhile, Thanksgiving is next week.  We’re making two pies: cherry and sour-cream apple pie. Well, it’s vegan sour cream apple pie, but it’s still completely awesome.

Along with the usual suspects: garlic green beans with toasted almonds, mashed potatoes, and homemade stuffing, (though my grandmother always called it ‘dressing’) we’re in the midst of deciding what the main dish will be.  You might think as vegans we’d be terribly limited for options.  Not so, my friends.  Here are the candidates:

  • chickpea crepes with cauliflower & shiitake mushroom filling
  • panko crusted sweet potato cakes with mushroom ragout
  • black bean & acorn squash empanadas
  • pumpkin gnocchi
  • three-sisters savory pie–with corn, beans, and pumpkin
Add yummy mushroom sauce and devour! I have it out for T-day dinners that are only shades of tan. Get some color on that plate, people!

Add yummy mushroom sauce and devour! I have a grudge against T-day feasts that are only shades of tan. Get some color on that plate, people!

Finally, I’ve been reading Patrick Rothfuss’s NAME OF THE WIND, (so good!) but I’m almost done.  There’s a whole world of  fantasy goodness by new authors on my kindle just waiting for me to dive on in and check them out.

I ***LOVE*** this cover!

I ***LOVE*** this cover!

And an advanced copy of Cara McKenna’s BRUTAL GAME is in there as well — Think of it as a kind of sexy, contemporary palate cleanser for all the fantasy.

Click to buy

Click to buy–.99 cents!

So that’s the plan.  This afternoon, I’m piling on the sweaters and slippers over the pj’s and sinking into the primordial stew of my creative subconscious.

When I emerge after the holiday, the anxious stew in my brain will be quiet.  I will be ready to be fed–both literally and metaphorically.  At that point, I think I’ll be fit to rejoin the world again.

See you on the other side.

–Madeline

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wicked Winter Wonderland: Kristen Ashley’s MIDNIGHT SOUL

2 Nov
midnightsoul

Click to buy! 🙂

by Madeline Iva

Kristen Ashley’s Fantasyland series has come to an end. Since I prefer my heroines with a little streak of edgy kick-ass, I was beyond thrilled see that Franka Drakkar, b*tch-cousin of leader Frey, is the heroine of MIDNIGHT SOUL, the fifth book in the series.

In the first book, Frey gets together with Finnie.  I seriously loved this book.  It inspired me. It’s set in a winter wonderland, and Frey is this hot, alpha, warrior dude–see Jason Momoa.  While the heroine, Finnie, is as cute as a basket full of kittens.  From the git go, Franka was pretty much the wicked villainess of the piece. Someone you loved to hate.

Yes Franka is back! She may be on everyone’s sh** list, but she helped to save their asses and save their world–so there. However, she lost her lover in the fight. He is gone, but he’s definitely not forgotten by Franka.

And who do we love more than a character we-love-to-hate? That same character crushed by love of course! Franka’s big, sad, wary eyes attract the notice of Noc–the latest in the Kristen Ashley collection of tall, dark, Alpha heroes.

Someone suggested David Gandy in the role of Noc–why thank you, don’t mind if I do!

Um. *Yeah.*

Um. *Yeah.*

[If you haven’t read the series–the premise is awesome! There is a parallel world to ours, and we all have a twin in this other world.  Sometimes individuals from our world trade places with the twin of that world.  Also, sometimes the doppleganger is kinda evil. Cue the sound of thunder and horses screaming.]

That Kristen Ashley picked a bad girl for her latest heroine had me all like:

post-32794-tina-fey-thumbs-up-gif-liz-lem-8qbe

Okay, but first I have to say it’s REALLY unusual for a Kristen Ashley heroine to be kinda wicked. The Rock Chick girls definitely have some serious mojo, but every Ashley heroine is like a really good chocolate Easter bunny.  Never bitter and never hollow.

Some readers might saying, “But you’ve seen things Franka’s done. How are we supposed to like her? How? How? How?” Good question. How do you make people like a wicked character?

A) You have a character we like fall in love with her.  Enter Noc, stage right.

B) You torture your bad girl character.  That’s how.

And indeed as we open our story, everyone is hating on Franka and she’s giving back as good as she gets, until she’s offered a mountain of wealth as payment for helping, you know, save the world.

The caveat is that after she takes the loot, she’s supposed to scram.  They want her gone, outta town, and like right now.  There’s a moment where Noc thinks she’s won’t take all the furs, jewels, diamonds, and gold coin. He even tells ‘the gang’ she won’t take it.  After all, Franka helped to save the world and sacrificed her lover in doing so.  Surely she has strictly honorable intentions just like the rest of them and will turn it down?

Ha! She’s gonna take the loot.  But Noc’s reaction really gets to her.  Why at this point in her life, is anyone trying to think she’s a nice woman? She’s been fighting and clawing away for survival since she was tiny, which makes it very difficult for her to face two sets of eyes–the condemnation in everyone else’s eyes and the hope in his. Ashley lets us inside her heroine’s head and we find out that people really know nothing about her.  She has her own  hidden agenda.

While it’s a common trope in romance for the heroine to like a bad man we don’t see the reverse played out as often as I’d like.  The men are not really bad, you know, they’re just misunderstood.  Mmmhmmm.

Kristen Ashley has flipped the trope and flipped it good.  I like the bad woman who is withdrawn and guarded with her emotions.  It reminds me of my horrible youth and how hard it was to let anyone get beyond my blazing torch of bitchy to the soft creamy center of my core goody-two-shoes inside.

I like the guy who is interested in peeling back her exterior and who’s gut is saying People, you don’t get it.  You don’t really see her.  Only *I* really see her.

I appreciate that for Franka, who’s had her motives twisted and judged for as long as she can remember, it’s a very powerful thing to have someone see you in a nice way.  It hurts–probably more than being hated.

Which is not to say it’s fun being despised.  I highly related to Franka when she experiences the wretched moment where she just knows everyone–every single person wants her gone and gone now.

Franka's like a kitty with it's head under the faucet. Yeah, you get a drink, but sheesh people.

Not fun, not fun at all.

And when thanks to events, people finally do begin to understand her and are like Ooooh, poor Franka, it doesn’t matter to her.  She’s still just as badass as she ever was.  High five, Kristen Ashley.

When Franka faces down her personal enemy and even though everyone (probably feeling really guilty) rushes in to help and support her, she’s like – people, I got this. Her hurts may be exposed, but she is still powerful. She’s not gonna turn into a runny pile of soggy because at last people understand.

SO GOOD IT HURTS.  Other complications ensue.  Because this is a Kristen Ashley story there’s tons more of the book—I won’t spoil it for you. Not only does Ashley flip things around for once by having the girl be from Lunwyn and the hero from our world, but Franka also comes to our world instead of the reverse.

About one third of my joy in the first book of the series is being in the snowy, snowy Lunwyn–b97ef46859e8ae50ea15cd63ce4c5aac

with winter palaces, sleds, warm wraps, luxurious clothes, crackling fires, and a general overall sumptuousness.

In this book we do the opposite. We get a vice-cop, pizza, tacos & reality TV. (Can we go back to Lunwyn now?)

It’s a great encore to a great series.  In letting her wicked aristo Franka and even poor Circe have a happy ending, Kristen Ashley is showing her own relentless need for an HEA. Cause Everybody deserves a happy ending! I was so overjoyed that finally even poor put-upon Circe finds Dax–who is a hunka hunka burning love.

I’ll leave you with that.

If you love Kristen Ashley the way we love Kristen Ashley but by some twist of fate you didn’t get this book, then my friends, you are in luck.

Oh look! ****A Giveaway****

wickedgiveaway2-2

All you have to do is like my fb page.  But wait!!! What if you haven’t read WILDEST DREAMS–the first book in the series? Not to worry, my friend.  I’ll toss it in with the other two books and you can settle in for some fun times.

You can also follow us at Lady Smut where we do our very best to explore the side of you that wants to be bad.

Madeline 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.  

How to be Wicked: A Lesson in Three Parts

1 Nov
Anyone want to guess what Lesson One is?

Anyone want to guess what Lesson One is?

The Wicked Theme Week continues as we celebrate release day for Madeline Iva’s Wicked Apprentice! Did you already preorder yours? Is it time for you to order right now, before you read another word? Go handle your business.

By Alexa Day

I often feel like the representative for the wicked lifestyle in my circle of friends and colleagues. It’s a great job, but it’s not without its challenges.

I do think people want to be wicked. They’re a little timid about it, which is kind of cute. I think they wish they could engage in recreational wickedness with a close circle of carefully chosen associates, all the while avoiding guilt and other unpleasant side effects.

But I don’t think people know how to ask about becoming wicked. Instead, they’re over on the sidelines, watching all the wonderful, wicked fun.

Well, I’m here to serve you. Let’s begin with a word about what wickedness is.

Wickedness is fun. It’s flirty. It’s mischievous. It’s kind of edgy. Unpredictable. It’s sexy, but sex itself is not required. I think of it as a hard-core whimsy.

Doesn’t that sound lovely? Let’s go there together with a hypothetical.

Let’s say that I’m enjoying this prelude to the holidays with a bottle of wine and two very good friends, Mark and Jason. You’d recognize Mark and Jason if you saw them. I mentioned them briefly in an old post.

So the three of us, Mark, Jason and I, are coming to the end of a bottle of wine, and Mark says he has a new car. Nice, luxuriant Jaguar F Coupe. It’s black, he says, and it has a surprisingly large trunk. Large enough that a person with an abduction fantasy could be swept away in it and driven to an alternate location for fun and games.

How does that sound?

Well, here’s how the wicked would approach such an invitation.

1. Stop caring about what Other People think. This is hard. A lot of people have spent a lifetime caring about Other People’s thoughts, and to some extent, participation in society demands that. This summer, I had a devil of a time evaluating my performance on a job interview because I’d gotten so used to not caring about Other People’s thoughts and feelings. I’m not asking you to abandon Other People altogether. I’m asking you to put them into perspective.

We can safely presume that Other People are going to get all pinched up about you volunteering to be manhandled into the trunk of the Jaguar, even it is by two hot, sexy male friends who know that’s what you want. It isn’t Other People’s business, to be sure. But here they are anyway. Are you sure that’s safe? Are you sure it’s what you want? Is it sending the Right Message?

If that doesn’t seem to be working, they will invoke still more Other People. I will never forget that on my last trip to Vegas, a friend of mine vetoed a return trip to see the Chippendales because “Certain People might think one is obsessed.” Unless Certain People can offer me some reason that a real lifeform is being harmed by my watching the Chippendales as often as I want, I don’t have half a f*ck to spare for their opinions. I don’t. I have so few f*cks to give. I can’t offer them to strangers at this point in my life.

Here’s the bottom line. If you want to be wicked, begin by distancing yourself from Other People who are not affected in any way by your wicked behavior. Let them get pinched up. Not your problem.

The only question that matters is this one: Is that what I want?

2. Cultivate the Right Relationships. It’s possible to be wicked by yourself, but it isn’t easy, and it’s not nearly as much fun. You’ll want to be with someone who will appreciate, facilitate, and expand your wickedness. How do you find those people, while avoiding Other People?

It’s not hard, once you stop caring so much about Other People. You can throw something like robot sex or abduction fantasy out into casual conversation if you don’t care about the objections of Other People. Try this icebreaker:

Hey, you know, Alexa is down with being manhandled into the back of a car for sexy fun and games.

Go ahead and use my name. I don’t mind.

Other People will respond with shock and resistance. No problem. Just let that go. That’s the price of wickedness.

There are some more people who think that means you want to get into their trunk right the hell now. Let those people go, too. First of all, they need to remember that you are talking about you and not offering to fulfill a fantasy for them. More importantly, it takes time to determine if you’re with people who will support your wickedness, and it takes confidence, too. The person who wants to go right to the car is afraid he’s going to lose his chance — and fear isn’t wicked at all.

Somewhere in the middle is the person who can have a long, intelligent conversation about the abduction fantasy, without judging anyone or putting pressure on you. Wicked people find the idea as interesting as they find you. By the time those people lead you into the trunk, it’ll feel like the best idea in the world.

Quick word to the wicked: If you are the wickedest person in the room, you just might be in the wrong room. Think it over.

3. Keep an open mind. An open mind separates the genuinely wicked from the poseurs. I hate to admit it, but it’s become necessary to test the wicked wannabe. We need to know if you’re Other People in disguise. We need to know if you’re really up for anything, within reasonable limits. Are you actually wicked, or are you just curious?

More importantly, though, your open mind grants you access to new dimensions of wickedness. That kind of growth is what makes life worthwhile.

Let’s go back to Mark and Jason and the bottle of wine. We’ve agreed to the Jaguar joyride, and now we’re moving to next steps.

What would I say to a little rope bondage? I say yes.

Wax play? I say yes.

A spirited game of I Never? I say yes. Don’t laugh. Have you ever played I Never while tied to a chair? Ever played with another person who was tied to the chair? Okay, then.

From time to time, we all have to say no. That’s just how the world works. Everyone’s got a hard limit somewhere, and I don’t care how often it shows up in books, I’m not down with someone pushing me beyond my hard limits because they know better. Hell, even the softer limits warrant the occasional no. Wicked people respect no; that’s what differentiates wickedness from evil.

But if you’re only saying no because of the perceptions of Other People, it might be time to try a little wickedness on for size.

There’s a wonderful, wicked world in Madeline Iva’s Wicked Apprentice! Of course you’re curious. Check this out.

wickedapprenticefinal-fjm_high_res_1800x2700Zephyr, 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.

Are your buttons pushed? Good! Mission accomplished. Go get yourself a copy right now.

And follow Lady Smut.

Wicked Ways on Halloween

31 Oct

by Kiersten Hallie Krum

halloween

Happy Halloween, Lady Smutters! I hope all your ghosts and ghouls treat you well today. Or tortured vampires and fierce werewolves, whatever floats your boats. May your intermittent candy fugue is worth every bite.

Last week,  I was so excited about Lady Smut blogger and guru extraordinaire Madeline Iva’s new release, Wicked Apprentice, that I completely jumped the gun for the theme week!

*This* week is theme week for Wicked Apprentice to coincide (obviously) with all the spooky, wicked goodness of today. To keep theme alive, I’m going to re-post last week’s post, Ways to Be Wicked, with an added bonus at the end that includes a picture of me in costume at last night’s steam punk themed Halloween party where yes, indeed, I did get my sexy on (the garters and boots can’t be seen in the picture, but they’re there, I promise). It very nearly became a costume that said Amazon Princess more than Steam Punk, but, hey, what’s wrong with both, amirite?

Were you wicked today? Do you plan to be? Hit us up with your wicked deeds and ways in the comments.

And follow Lady Smut where our wicked ways are too much to contain to only one day–or week.

WAYS TO BE WICKED–AGAIN

It’s theme week here at Lady Smut as we celebrate the release of Lady Smut blogger and all-around guru, Madeline Iva’s, new novel Wicked Apprentice, a high-fantasy romance filled with betrayals and power juggling and chained up lovers and all sorts of sexy, magical hi-jinks just in time for Halloween!

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Click on image to buy!

In Wicked Apprentice, the heroine, Zephyr, a magic apprentice, has to do a wicked deed in order to satisfy her mistress. This deed backfires in a delicious way when her captive elf becomes her captive lover and soon after, a power shift makes her his master–but you’ll have to read the book to find out how that comes about.

Wicked can mean different things to different people. Evil, obviously. That’s a given. Those from the Boston area have been known to use it as an expression of cool. I tend to use it more along the lines of “naughty”–a little bit of wicked to spice up life. For a couple of weeks now, I’ve been musing on the many ways one can be “wicked” (again, not the evil kind because, bad). Musing and occasionally–let’s say testing things out. A step-by-step approach in ways to be wicked, so to speak.

Enter Halloween, that bastion of wicked deeds done right. The one day a year (other than comic-cons) when people can legitimately dress up in costumes with varying flamboyance and indulge that wicked, naughty side that is otherwise kept, for the most part, under wraps and behind closed doors. It’s the time of the pagan solstice, of Samhaim, a night historically meant for remembering the dead, but one that is now more about costumes and hordes of candy. Hordes.

Every year, my inner feminist heartily frowns–frown, frown, frown–at the proliferation of sexed-up costumes for women. It’s hard to find an advert for an adult woman’s costume that doesn’t include the word “sexy” or pictures that require no added description. Honestly, it’s ridiculous. Sexy maid, sexy cat, sexy pirate, sexy teacher, sexy school girl, sexy plumber (you never know). These days, there’s even sexy Harry Potter characters, though, okay, yeah, who wouldn’t be tempted by thatespecially after a peek at this set of Harry Potter boudoir pictures. Acc-ee-ohhhhh.

ruth-ginsberg

Ruth Ginsberg Halloween costume

Fortunately, MTV and PopSugar have put together a list of feminist friendly costumes that may also be sexxed up to the wearer’s preference. Though, admittedly, I think “sexy tampon” or going as a (very large) vagina is a tad too on-point and, well, tasteless. But that’s me.

This helpful post from Bustle even gives assembly tips on how to construct your feminist-friendly costume. Here too is a Pinterest board of the same, and I gotta say, I’m sorely tempted by the Justice Ruth Ginsberg option. Because she rocks that SCOTUS bench hard.

A quick trip through the options left me with an overwhelming sense of pantsuits, but if it’s good for the (soon-to-be) POTUS-elect, then bring it on! Which is, of course, another feminist-friendly and seriously timely costume option (sexy quotient left up to the wearer, natch): Senator Clinton. If I had to guess, I suspect there’ll be a plethora of Clinton costumes on the adult Halloween party circuit this year. What would be really cool if a group of lady friends got together to be Clinton throughout the years. Cue the Google search.

birth-control

I don’t care how sexy safe sex is. No. Just no.

That said, when I found myself in need of a costume for a Halloween party with a Jazz Age/Steampunk theme (compliance not required, bless them), I did not immediately search for a feminist-friendly costume. I immediately wondered if there was a prayer my red flapper dress might fit (it doesn’t) and then immediately went Amazon searching for the bustier/ruche skirt/high boots route. I may even have ordered thigh-highs and garters–okay, I totally did. Because, dammit, I wanna get my sexy on!

And that’s the key. Like lingerie, sexy costumes should, in my opinion, be about what makes the wearer feel sexy, not for another person’s prurient pleasure. (That’s just a bonus, am I right? *rim shot*.)

Look, I’ve been wearing some version of a Wonder Woman costume since I was five years old (surprising no one, I’m sure) and that’s basically just a leotard and a tiara (and a lasso!). I can see me revisiting that tried and true (and awesome) homage in future years, especially given the update the costume is getting in the new Wonder Woman movie next year. And I can’t imagine anyone claiming that Wonder Woman, of all female icons, is not feminist. Ditto the sexy. Because kicking bad guy ass in a sparkly leotard and a tiara (with a lasso!) is freakin’ sexy, y’all. Even a five-year old knows that (kinda) (you know what I mean).

wonder-woman-movie-poster

Ah. Yeah.

Bonus: Here I am in all my wicked ways as a steam punk diva.

Here I am in all my wicked ways as a steam punk diva. Kids, don’t try this at home.

There was a day and age when women’s sexuality was deemed to be wicked and evil. Women were called witches and heretics for daring to speak up for themselves. These days, thankfully, women–even the nasty ones–don’t have to eschew their wicked, sexy ways to avoid being burnt at the stake. They can indulge their inner naughty side and really, they don’t have to wait for Halloween to do it either. In the 60s, women burned their bras in protest. Me, I like my bras–the sexier, the better–and I’m way too frugal to burn them. Instead, this Halloween, I plan to embrace the spirit of the occasion and indulge my wicked, sexy ways without setting aside my inner feminist to do it. A little bit of wicked never hurt anyone…for long.

 

Be sure to check out Madeline’s Wicked Apprentice and follow Lady Smut so you never miss any of our wicked, sexy ways. 

Writer, singer, 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 Rocksis now available. Visit her website at www.kierstenkrum.com and find her regularly over sharing on various social media via @kierstenkrum.

Ghosts Making Booty Calls

28 Oct

by Elizabeth SaFleur

It’s a wild wicked week at LadySmut. Not only is our very own Madeline Iva coming out with her latest, Wicked Apprentice, but we’re tackling all the Halloween myths, legends, costume angst and deep, dark truths lurking around this favorite holiday.

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Let’s talk ghost sex. As in, how they do it. You’ve wondered this, too? Well, good. Because I’ve lost some sleep over figuring out how do ghosts get it on. I mean, they’re transparent. How does “that” get into “this.” (Picture the hand gestures being made right now.) Wouldn’t it just, ahem, slide right through? And not in a good way. In a completely ineffectual way.

An answer must be found. It simply must. Because apparently fifteen perfect — FIFTEEN PERCENT! — of real, live, breathing people are getting it on with a non corporeal being. Even the Travel Channel did a documentary called Ghost Lovers (now officially in my Netflix cue. Oy, the things I endure for research.).

Consent isn’t such a thing in ghostland, either. Some people who’ve been the recipient of such a spiritual encounter did not make the booty call. The horny apparitions just appeared and started groping like Donald Trump. Oh, the horrors.

ghostbusters-ghost-blowjob-o

According to experts, however, just a fraction of the world’s ghost sex is non-consensual. Well, whew. But wait a minute. This means some of them DID ask for it? Yeppers. In fact, a whole community has cropped up around ghost fetishism. You just have to be open to such an encounter, say the people with spectrophilia, the official name for a fetish or condition where people display a strong sexual attraction to ghosts and spirits. So, settle in, relax your mind and bring on the invisible ding dongs? Even if you could request ghost sex, the original question stands.

HOW does it work?

ghost-movie

I turned to my favorite kind of research: buying and reading erotic romance books (as if the incentive was required). The amount of available ghost erotica is impressive. Succubus, demons and Casper-like beings are all getting it on between the pages. Carolyn Crane, Beth Kery, and our very own Alexa Day have written ghosts tales.

Check out Alexa’s short story, Three, After Midnight, in Mysteries of the Macabre: a Halloween Anthology. So. Much. Hawtness.

So, how do they do it? you are shouting  right now. The answer is simple my friends, thanks to Carolyn Crane’s Old Salt, a delightful short about a disenchanted tour guide in a small town whose claim to fame is the nightly hauntings from a drowned sea captain called “Old Salt.” Turns out “Old Salt” is really “Young Hot Guy.”

****SPOILER ALERT****

She dies. But all is not lost. He teaches the tour guide how to become corporeal for short periods of time. Guess what they do during these times? They concentrate really, really hard and bam! Bam-bam-bam-bam!

ghost-kiss

He-he-he-he. So there you go. Who knew the answer was so easy? You just gotta want it. Like anything in life, I guess.

Follow LadySmut. We’re easy. We won’t make you have sex with invisible critters for fun. Just pick up one of our books, like Madeline Iva’s latest, Wicked Apprentice, for all the salacious fun and fantasy you can handle.

About Wicked Apprentice

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.

Madeline Iva’s high fantasy romance will enchant readers who love all things elvish, brooding heroes and bold heroines.

*****

Elizabeth SaFleur writes contemporary erotic romance and she’s not afraid to get a little graphic about it  — “it” being the smex, the BDSM or Washington, DC society, which she regularly features in her series, the Elite Doms of Washington.

Selene & Her Cold, Cold Heart: UNDERWORLD #5 Where Are We Going? Where Have We Been?

20 Oct neehz2hlbagphk_2_b
Cold kick-ass heroine? Yeah. LURV IT!

Cold kick-ass heroine? Yeah. LURV IT!

By Madeline Iva

I’m an Underworld follower—are you?  UNDERWORLD #5 BLOOD WARS comes out January 6th. I’m not a big movie franchise person. Didn’t see all the Twilight films. Didn’t see all the Star Wars films, Star Trek films, Hobbit films, etc, etc.

I’m going to go see UNDERWORLD BLOOD WARS for three reasons: Theo James, Theo James and Theo James.

If you’ve missed the whole Underworld franchise, below are reasons why I loved the original film-as well as which of the films to watch and which to skip. For those of you who have seen Underworld #1 – 4, check out down below where I parse the preview for Underworld #5.

WHY UNDERWORLD? It vampires vs. werewolves–or Lycans as they call them, and I’m all about cool, glittery Vampires with style. And even more about Theo James.

Before Theo popped up in Underworld #4, what first drew me into this world was Selene—cold, rational, ruthless Selene. All alone and perfectly bad-ass. Wearing head to toe black with ice blue eyes, she is a liquid ripple of lethal grace in a sapphire city. A female action adventure lead who sees trouble with a slight irritated wrinkle of her logical brow, and then proceeds to ruthlessly shoot up whatever needs obliterating.neehz2hlbagphk_2_b

But you haven’t seen the movies? You poor thing. Come with me, let me guide you through them.

UNDERWORLD #1 is awesome! Great casting. Great style. Great photography–shot in shades of elegant blue and black. Where are we? Who cares. Probably America. But not really.

The toys are fun too: Vampires invent liquid silver bullets–how do they stay liquid at room temp? Reasons. The silver spreads through a Lycans’ bloodstream killing them dead.  But the Lycans find a way to create these glow-y untra-violet liquid bullets.  It’s sunshine in a bullet and also kills vampires dead.

However, while the Lycans run around like homeless hipsters through the underground all fight club-ish in the sewers, the vampires have retreated mostly to their gated gi-normic estate where they hold parties and such.  Selene seems to be the only one out there doing the gritty job of nailing the Lycans with a spray of bullets in the subway system, while her cohorts are all obsessed with the pecking order and some stupid party.

michael

Michael is hot. And kinda cursed, poor guy.

One would think that Selene is without any feelings at all, but when she spots Michael she finds him interesting. She watches him from above – as he starts to experience a “my life is about to get pretty trippy right now” moment.  He’s hot in a Heath Ledger on steroids kind of way.

And yes, there’s a love story that develops.  Though at first it’s a “Shut up while I save your ass, idiot human” story.

The number one bad guy is played by the actor, Michael Sheen.  Michael Sheen’s greatness impresses me–I’m convinced he can do anything.  He was fabulous as “the pedantic one” in MIDNIGHT IN PARIS, and so very good in MASTERS OF SEX.

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Michael Sheen–he’s soooo good!

To have a great story, your villain must be as compelling and as charismatic as your protagonists. We have that in Michael Sheen – he rivals our lovers in sympathy by the end, as well as in acting chops. Yet he’s willing to chew the scenery a bit, while the other two commit to underplaying their moments. (I love underplaying.  Seriously.)

And what’s-his-name –Bill Nighy, is GREAT as a clammy ancient vampire risen from his freeze-dried stasis. You get the feeling that if he was once human he’s long forgot all about it.  (It takes a certain kind of actor to sell that larger-than-life mythic quality–and Bill N is perfect.)

So we get a very good first half of the film, the beginning of the third act is great as well and the end wraps up with lot of fighting mixed with some dirty politics, then a lot more fight fight fight –and then we’re done.  Overall, Underworld #1 is very much worth seeing.

UNDERWORLD EVOLUTION is a great title–but a miss. Our protagonist from Underworld #1, Michael–aka Heath on Steroids–can transform into this bizarre, ferocious, black gargoyle thing.  The black gargoyle thing likes to fight.  And that’s what this movie is: fight fight fight, politics, politics, blah, blah, blah, fight fight fight. Selene, as always, has to get Michael back, fight everyone, then fight some more and–Yawn. Also the movie is shot too much in daylight. The Underworld franchise works best during the hours of midnight to 4am. I recommend skipping this movie.

Bill Nighy plays Viktor with relish.

Bill Nighy plays Viktor with relish.

UNDERWORLD 3, RISE OF THE LYCANS is freaky deaky. We go back to the past – and the past is bleak, my friends. It’s all stone castles, whips, and people layered in furs, wearing swords.  You know what I mean. I actually didn’t make it through the movie.  This ur-myth of the Lycans and how they came to be at war with the vampires for All Time was missing a crucial component for me–Selene.

I stopped watching when Michael Sheen and Rhona Mitra are making forbidden love. But they’re like, doing it sticking over the edge of a cliff. That was just odd. She was on top, and Michael Sheen was the one hanging over an abyss.  His character seems to like it.  Cliff kink.  Who’d a thunk it?

SIDE NOTE: Kate Beckinsale, by this time, was married to the director.  Which is like, uh-oh.  Because when she first came into the first Underworld movie she was married to Michael Sheen–with whom she has a child.  So there’s this whole personal relationship issue between Kate, the director Len Wiseman, and Michael Sheen–but Kate says they’re all cool.  Apparently she and Wiseman eventually broke up.len-wiseman

So although UNDERWORLD RISE OF THE LYCANS had it’s moments, it had no Selene. No Selene –and no Selene/Michael-Ledger-on-Steroids romance. This was a problem. Without Selene, I didn’t care.

But I’m still a believer!

the

Theo James is the kind of hero I can get behind.

UNDERWORLD AWAKENING got a big boost of energy in the form of Theo James and a tight new script that wasn’t exactly just the same-old same-old.  Selene had been caught and frozen.  She wakes up at the beginning of the film to find that we’ve gone from the kinda present to the near future – awesome! But wait! What about Michael? Selene is busting out of some nasty lab facility but before she leaves, she uses her sense of connection to track down Michael in another vampire popsicle container.  Only, when she busts in, it’s not Michael in the container.  It’s some tweener girl she’s never seen before.  Cool! But what about Michael?

They escape and discover Theo James.  Hell yeah—but what about MICHAEL?

I mean, the bite of love Selene feels for Michael–this is why we root for team Selene. And yet, I have to admit, if Michael has to die saving his little family or something and then Theo James steps in, I could live with that. I’m ready.

Ultimate decision: Underworld #4 is a decent movie. Plenty of Selene, and I’m able to let go Michael and move onto Theo.  Definitely worth watching.

Moving on!

UNDERWORLD 5: BLOOD WARS.  Here’s the trailer:

Okay, what can we ken from this 2:41 minute trailer?

Well, we’re back to Selene. And…there’s more Theo James.  (Fist pump!) What else can we glean from this preview? It’s shot in that blue-y light which makes me very very happy.

However, it’s not a good sign that they spend the first minute or so of the preview on the past.

marius

Marius–watch out. Selene is coming for you.

The villain looks GOOD. It’s that British actor I see in lots of things that I think of as Not-Cumberbitch. (He’s tall, has the same coloring and small squinty blue eyes too. He plays a Lycan named Marius. I like the way Selene spits out the words “Tell your leader—Marius–” Ptwoo! “I’m coming for him.”

Theo’s around and he’s protecting Selene.  Great! Bring it on! Apparently the Lycans want the blood of Selene and her daughter and…somehow this will make someone invincible?  There are kick ass Lycans, power-hungry vampires, and a woman with long white hair. There’s some winter wonderland stuff that ends with Selene wrapped up like a mummy being dunked in ice water…and some kind of cage match.

Sign me up! I know, it all sounds sort of muddled, but I have faith.  They clearly have great actors, the blue-y light, and Selene plus Theo. This is what I like and for the rest, I’ll cross my fingers and hope for the best, because this movie has such a great fantasy/paranormal vibe.

Alas, it’s going to come out months from now.  Meanwhile, my own fantasy romance is out in two weeks — and I’m having a give away to celebrate.  Stay tuned!

 

Right now you can click to pre-order it for .99 cents. Crazy, right?

Right now you can click to pre-order it for .99 cents. Crazy, right?

Madeline Iva writes fantasy and paranormal romance.  Her fantasy romance, WICKED APPRENTICE, featuring a magic geek heroine, is available for pre-order and releases November 1st.  Sign up Madeline Iva news & give aways.  Follow her on facebook.

 

The Woman in the Skull Dress: SFF & Paranormal Round Up From WRW Lunch

13 Oct

by Madeline Iva

THE WOMAN IN THE SKULL DRESS:

I went to the Washington Romance Writers blogger & reader’s lunch and all I got was THIS FABULOUS BAG OF GOODIES!!! The turquoise skull bracelet was the show stopper. Let’s chat with the woman in the skull dress who gave me this cool bag — Urban Fantasy author, JT Bock.

I went to the Washington Romance Writers blogger & reader's lunch and all I got was THIS FABULOUS BAG OF GOODIES!!! The turquoise skull bracelet was the show stopper.

MADELINE IVA: Jennifer it was a pleasure to sit next to you at the luncheon yesterday.  Your goodie bag *rocked*.

I joined for a moment in a conversation you were having with a reader named Sarah about the righteousness of Buffy.  Tell me more about that convo:

JT Bock in her rockin' dress at the WRW luncheon.

JT Bock in her rockin’ dress at the WRW luncheon.

JT BOCK: Regarding Joss Whedon, we both agreed how Buffy was one of the first female characters to lead a TV series that was focused on action and being a hero. She was the savior, not a prop of a male savior who is constantly needing help or a footnote in the inciting incident that sets the male hero on his journey.

Although she did deal with teenage issues of dating and choosing the wrong boys 😉 she was her own agent. Her identity wasn’t tied to whom she was dating or the approval of the opposite sex. She called the shots. We also agreed that the dialogue was so different. It was quotable because they spoke like our generation does with references to pulp culture and making up words to describe their lives and experiences (http://www.buffyworld.com/slanguage/slang.htm). Here was a woman who fought vampires and made mistakes and had these incredible friendships and awkward encounters at school. He made her relatable.

She felt that she liked Angel with Buffy. Although I did agree that he was better suited for her, I did prefer Spike overall as a character. (I have an affection for sarcastic British-accented men.)

JT Bock when she's not being a woman of mystery.

JT Bock when she’s not being a woman of mystery.

MADELINE IVA: Meeee too! I agree that they maybe weren’t right for each other, but I liked him best.  I liked that line “I may be love’s bitch, but at least I’m man enough to admit it.” (me: groan of joy)

JT BOCK: I enjoyed his overall arc, especially the final scene where he sacrifices himself to save the world. Buffy tells him that she loves him. He replies, “No, you don’t. But thanks for saying it.” A powerful moment that’s lightened with a bit of sarcastic humor showing how much he’s grown to become a man Buffy could love.

MADELINE IVA: Here’s a short blurb from you first book–love it! 51nft4dz8ql

UltraAgent Surefire’s plan is simple: Capture the transhuman thief Raven. Win back the respect of her father. Get a raise.

Easy, right?

Moving along…

SEX AND THE SINGLE VAMP

Robin hanging out at the luncheon with Sarah Wendell, from Smart Bitches Trashy Books and Joy of Joyfully Reviewed

Robin hanging out at the luncheon with Sarah Wendell, from Smart Bitches Trashy Books and Joy of Joyfully Reviewed

ROBIN COVINGTON: A highlight for me was bonding over the love of reading. I had an amazing conversation with Sara Mallion about our love of male/male romance. We had a blast squeeing over books we both loved and then we introduced new ones to each other.  It made the time fly by so quickly.

MADLINE IVA: My friend said your good bag rocked, btw. I’m gawping at this cover–let’s share a blurb:51wlqdsobxl

Cici Trent, vampire and media darling, spends her days finding true love for humans and supernaturals (the “Others”) at her dating agency. But someone is trying to sabotage her business and she needs help. Unfortunately, the best man for the job is the one who broke her still-beating heart two hundred fifty-four years ago.

HOT CONVICT SEX ON A STRANGE PLANET

ALISON AIMES: I LOVE your blog. Just read the first couple blogs and laughed my ass off.

MADELINE IVA: Thanks Alison. 🙂 What was your take away from the lunch?

ALISON AIMES: It was so much fun to actually have time to hang with readers, rather then a quick hello and a sign of the book.  One woman I spoke with came from as far away as Colorado. Another from Tennessee. Amazing! We dished about hot men and sex in your 40s, and the bliss of reading romance. Oh, and the need for more diversity in romance book covers and subject matter. It was like chatting with a bunch of girlfriends I known forever. LOL.

MADELINE IVA: I have to say–the cover and blurb of your latest series is smokin’.51r1qg8gnpl-_uy250_

His Planet. His Rules.

When Bella West crash lands on prison planet Dragath25, the only thing standing between her and a mass of brutal criminals is one of their own, a ruthless loner known only as 673. But what starts out as a desperate trade based on protection and raw lust soon blossoms into a scorching need that will push them both to the edge….

AND THUS…A BLOG HOP WAS BORN

It was so much fun connecting with other authors — I sat at the same table with Alexa Egan who does historical paranormal.  Here’s a blurb from her book WARRIOR’S CURSE:

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Will their desire conquer evil ’s wrath?

Major Gray de Coursy, Earl of Halvossa and exiled heir to the five clans of the Imnada shapechangers, must regain his throne in order to save his people from a deadly war with the Feybloods.

I think historical fantasy is going to be a really big trend in the coming years, but at the lunch I suffered the curse of being seated all the way across the table from Alexa, and we didn’t get to chat much.  And isn’t that the way it always is? The other bloggers and I left the lunch hungry for more, so we decided to form a blog hop where we could talk with authors more about their books.

Here’s a list of the other bloggers in the blog hop.  Check our Lady Smut social media (Twitter and FB page) where we’ll post links to the other blog hop posts.  Here’s the first one with Kimberly Kincaid, Harper Kincaid, MK Meredith, and Robin Covington (again!)luncheonbloghop2

Meanwhile, seeing all these authors and bloggers got me mighty amped for my own first book coming out — and I’m having a give away to celebrate.  Stay tuned!

wickedapprenticefinal-coverfjm_high_res_1800x2700Madeline Iva writes fantasy and paranormal romance.  Her fantasy romance, WICKED APPRENTICE, featuring a magic geek heroine, is available for pre-order and releases November 1st.

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.

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