(Book One – Taming the Beast series)
by Tina Donahue
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No more Mr. Nice Guy.
Magic is Becca Salt’s business, but it ain’t happening in her bedroom. The half-witch proprietress of From Crud to Stud performs miracle makeovers for paranormal creatures. Once she’s done with them, they’re out the door hunting for hot babes, not hanging around for a too-curvy, plain Jane like her.
Her newest client is hot, hung, mouthwatering perfection. What could she possibly improve upon?
Eric Diletto. Descendant of Cupid, bred for courtship, courtesy, and all that other gentlemanly junk. What has it gotten him? Dumped time and again for bad boys. He needs Becca’s help for an entirely different reason—regression therapy to release his inner beast. Grrrr.
Two potions later, they’re crawling all over each other. Becca aches for a man who loves her as she is, not because he’s under the influence. But Eric isn’t as impaired as she thinks. And he intends to take Becca here, there, and everywhere—anything to convince her his desire isn’t just the potions talking.
A witchdoctor’s nightmare. Contains potions with weird side effects, a sorceress with limited magical skills and a yearning heart, plus a minor god who wants to get down and dirty. Bad, bad boy!
He gaped at the claw marks on the walls, the padded table with extensions for arms and legs with leather restraints dangling from both areas. In other words, the props for an executioner’s wet dream.
Eric circled the table. “You’re going to strap me to this?”
Becca closed the door and locked it. She heard Constance and Heather move closer immediately, their shoes tapping the floor. “It’s for your protection…and mine. It’s in the contract.” She held it up to remind him. “Page fifty-two, right above where you initialed it.”
He seemed sorry he had. “How much of my beast are you going to pull out?”
“Only a little,” she promised. “If there’s any at all.”
“There is.” He appeared offended that she kept questioning it. “There has to be. I’m a guy, all right?”
Becca wasn’t about to argue with him. He’d worn a navy tee and battered jeans that didn’t hide one muscle on his gorgeous body. She sagged against the door, needing it for support. Even his feet were luscious, nice and big, his toes long, coming right to the edges of his leather sandals.
Given that this was a weekday, he must have taken off from work because he didn’t know what to expect.
Join the club. She murmured, “What do you do?”
He stopped fingering the wrist restraints. “Do?”
“At your job.”
“Oh. I’m a financial analyst. I make sure my extended family’s investments are sound. Were you thinking of investing?”
Before he whipped out his business card, Becca shook her head. “How aggressive do financial analysts get?”
“In their recommendations?”
“While they’re at work. Once I’ve pulled out some of your inner beast…that is, if there is any to pull—”
“Haven’t I already said there is? Don’t you worry. I don’t have to be a pussycat at work.” He hooked his thumbs into his front pockets. “Let’s get started.”
A lock of hair had fallen over his forehead. The rest of those sun-kissed waves were mussed as though he’d just rolled off a woman and out of bed. He was rumpled and all male. Hotter than sin. With just a smidgen of his inner beast liberated, he’d be irresistible to every female on planet earth and beyond.
On watery legs, she forced herself to the sink to mix her mom’s potions. “Take off your clothes.”
An image flashed in her mind of him tugging the stretchy boxers up his thighs, but only after she’d gotten a good look at his stuff. She wanted to see it again. Was that so damn bad? “Sorry, didn’t know you were modest.”
“I’m not. But I am curious.”
Becca put the bottle of cloves and apple seeds next to the Bordeaux, stalling for a good lie. At last, she had it. “I need to see the potion’s effect on every part of your body.” She turned. “All right?”
He stared at his groin. “By every part do you mean…”
“Nope. Just your skin.” She hoped.
He sighed in obvious relief and ditched his clothes, tossing them on one of the institutional chairs. Naked, unashamed and exceedingly well hung, he faced her.
The world stopped.
Slabs of firm, hard muscle draped his frame, all golden skin with no trace of a tan line. He swam or sunbathed in the nude and was more gorgeous than any Greek god Becca had read about in her literature classes.
“What now?” he asked.
“What happens now?”
Not what Becca wanted, that was for sure. “Turn around.”
He frowned. “Why?”
So she’d quit seeing herself on her knees, his glorious shaft in her palms. She’d sniff it first, then his balls, finally his thick thatch of hair, needing to drown in his scent. He’d smell of the outdoors and something masculine. She’d moan. He’d smile, then push to his toes as she licked his wiry curls and tasted his crown, lapping it as she would a scoop of decadent fudge ice cream, savoring the bead of moisture glistening on the small slit. His pre-come. Already excited, he’d go over the moon with her slavish attention, his rod growing longer and harder and…
Becca stifled a needy whimper and continued to lie, “So you don’t see the secret ingredients I’m using.”
“Would I even recognize them?”
“Then they’re normal.”
About Me (You know you want to know!):
I’m an award-winning, bestselling novelist in erotic, paranormal, contemporary and historical romance for Samhain Publishing, Ellora’s Cave, Siren Publishing, Booktrope, and Kensington. Yay! Booklist, Publisher’s Weekly, Romantic Times and numerous online sites have praised my work, and trust me, I’m forever grateful for that. I’ve had my books reach finals in the EPIC competition, one title was named Book of the Year at a review site, and others have won awards in RWA-sponsored contests. I’m actually featured in the 2012 Novel & Short Story Writer’s Market. Talk about feeling like a freaking star. Before my writing career, I was the editor of an award–winning Midwestern newspaper and worked in Story Direction for a Hollywood production company. Outside of being an admitted and unrepentant chocoholic, I’ve flown a single-engine plane (scary stuff), rewired an old house using an electricity for dummies book, and have been known to moan like Meg Ryan in When Harry Met Sally whenever I’m eating anything Mexican or Italian. Yeah, I like to eat (burp).
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1. Adored – RWA award-winning; EPIC 2011 Finalist; 4 Stars RT
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3. Lush Velvet Nights – EPIC 2011 Finalist; Golden Nib Award
4. In His Arms – SIX 5 Star Reviews; 4 Stars RT
5. Sensual Stranger – 2010 Book of the Year (erotic); 4 Stars RT
6. The Yearning – Top Ten Bestseller
7. Take Me Away – #1 Pick, Miz Love Loves Books
8. Unending Desire – Best Book Rating LASR
9. SiNN – Nominated for Book of the Week LASR
10. Sinfully Wicked – Magnificent – Romancing the Book
11. Claiming Magique – Top Pick – NOR
12. Illicit Desire – Four Stars Romantic Times
13. Come Fill Me – Five Stars – Guilty Pleasures
14. Losing Control - Four and a Half Stars - Sensual Reads
15. Shameless Desire - Four and a Half Stars - The Jeep Diva
16. Illicit Intent – Four and a Half Stars – Sensual Reads
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18. Seven Sensuous Days – Four Stars – Long & Short Reviews
19. Stolen Desire – Five Hearts – Novel Broads