Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Tah Dah!!!! The Countdown Begins....

Introducing the OFFICIAL kick off post....the ESCALATION CLAUSE countdown to release has begun!
*insert confetti toss and fist pump, plus distinctive beer glass clink*

Escalation Clause: Stewart Realty Book 6 releases November 4, 2012 with a book signing at Nicola's Bookstore in Ann Arbor!

I am so honored to be continuing this series. There are 2 more books planned within its scope plus the off shoot Black Jack Gentlemen Series and a potential series involving The Suite in Detroit.

So here are the Need to Knows:
the cover

the blurb:
Young love burns hot and bright. Soul mates are found, then lost in the blink of an eye. When young widow Maureen Gordon Taylor meets her daughter's sexy soccer coach, her body and heart slowly unthaw.  But will holding tight to the past cost her a future?  
A devastating blow shatters a family's fragile happiness. Rob Freitag and Lila Warren now confront life without the emotional glue that once bound them, but a shared goal brings them back together. Is it enough to make them whole again and become the family they were meant to be?
Mutual trust is hard won for the Gordons.  When tragedy strikes, Jack and Sara’s lives are sent into a tailspin.  To keep her family from falling apart, she must force Jack to admit his deepest fears. After everything they’ve been through, can they revive the spark and move to the next stage of marital fulfillment?
The sweeping saga of the Stewart Realty series continues as long-time friends learn to rely on each other, and to grab hold of happiness before it's too late. 

the excerpts (rated)
PG 13 for language:

The sunlight pierced the light haze of his sleep. Brandis groaned, rolled over seeking shade and found himself hand-and-kneeing it facing the brick pavers of his parents’ patio. “Christ in a sidecar what time is it?” He mumbled, flipping around so he sat, back against the chaise lounge that must have served as his bed for the night. Not that he recalled anything after the second joint. He groaned and ran a hand down his already sweaty face.
Jack walked out the back door, Mountain Dew in hand, dressed for work at his father’s construction site for the day. Brandis blinked at his friend. “How in the hell can be so awake and non-hung over? I feel like three day old shit.”
“You look like it, too.” Jack slammed the remaining soda and threw the can into the returnables' bin. “You taking those back today? We need food at the house while you’re at it.”
Brandis flipped him off. “I look like your personal shopper?”
“No,” Jack sat, laced his work boots up then leveled a deep blue stare at him. “You look like a guy lucky enough not to have to work on the Saturday after a giant pool party.” His friend leaned forward on his knees and gave Brandis an ominous look. “You also look like the guy who could possibly be messing around with my sister. I don’t recommend you be that guy. Not at all.”
“I’m…” Brandis started to say something, but he had nothing, so he stayed quiet. Jack stared him down, turned on his heel then left, letting the gate bang loud behind him. Brandis crawled to the edge of the pool, noted all the shit he needed to clean out of it including at least two condoms, then stuck his feet into the cold water, groaning when his temples started pounding to the beat of his heart. He put his head in his hands. Mo was the first thing he saw when he closed his eyes. Her bright blue eyes snapping with laughter, anger, and…desire … God help him, he had nursed a crush on her for years.
She’d been such a tomboy, running with him and Jack, tagging along then joining in the baseball, basketball, soccer whatever they concocted, up to and including egg throwing at Halloween and more less innocent vices. Their easy camaraderie had always allowed them to wrestle, to tickle, to touch. After she’d shown up at his house last month, determined to escape her jerk-off father, he thought he could just ease back into it. But, he hadn’t seen her in over a year, and in that time, she had become a full-fledged, jaw-dropping woman. Her tall, athletic frame was lush, lovely, full-hipped and inviting. The deep blue of her eyes and inky black fall of her hair made him want to bury his hands in it, to kiss her until she begged for more.
So, it seemed, his crush had bloomed into full-blown lust. A desire she apparently matched.
 No way.
He’d heard Jack’s message loud and clear. And as much of a man-whore as Brandis was, he was a loyal friend. So, Mo was off limits. Fine. He did not need that hassle, not now, with just a month and a half before he left for Colorado.
He leaned back on his hands and willed his cock soft, but the memory of her lips, and the feel of her skin against his if just for that one moment was not something he would soon forget. When he’d fucked that girl in the basement then realized Mo had been down there, watching them, it had taken him a couple of seconds to acknowledge he’d been picturing her beneath him, her body taking his, the sounds of her climax in his ears the entire time.
What a fucking mess.
“Hey,” he nearly jumped a mile into the air at the sound of her voice. “I, um, just want to say, you know, well…” She sat a couple of feet from him and let her feet dangle in the water. “Sorry.” She looked straight ahead.
“For what?” He cleared his throat, nervous beyond belief.
“For spying on you. I mean, I wasn’t, I was getting a drink and just kind of … oh hell. You know what I mean.” She looked down into the water. “This pool is disgusting.” She shoved a greasy looking floating seat away with her foot. “Are those…” She pointed to the used rubbers on the bottom.
“Yeah,” he ran a hand down his face, then jumped up and grabbed the skimmer. He cleared the condoms, a bottle of sunscreen and three beer cans from the pool, trying to ignore her. But his baser self would not cooperate and he had to grab a towel and fasten it around his waist to hide the damn tent in his shorts. She moved all the chairs back into their usual places and cleaned off the two glass-topped tables, finding yet another rubber in the grass near the back fence.
“You guys sure do know how to throw a party.” She smiled at him, lifting his heart and making his damn cock pound in time with his headache.
“Huh,” he grunted, before turning the water on to refill the pool and taking a reading on the chemicals. Sweat dripped off his forehead, blurring his vision. Fuck it was hot out already and it was barely eight o’clock in the morning. She crouched down next to him, her arm grazing his, making him flinch. Crush, Brandis. Remember? She is a no-go zone. Don’t do it.


Sara handed Lila another tissue, but her own eyes stayed dry. Observing the slow dissolution of her brother’s remaining family hurt, but pretty much everything hurt these days.
It was just, as they say, one more thing.
She patted the woman’s shaking shoulders, listened to her rant about Rob. But she hardly heard anything. The bubble wrap that seemed to encase her had not loosened as she hoped and prayed it would. And after a year, the wall between her and Jack approached Chinese construction standards. She watched, numb, while Katie and Maddie rolled around on the floor with their little brothers.
“Sara,” Lila said.
She turned her head slowly, noted she was late for work . “Yeah, sorry.” She tried a smile, but the other woman’s face remained frowning.
“Are you okay?” Lila’s black hair was shorter these days, and framed her heart-shaped face. Sara tried to focus on anything beyond that. Katie yelled when one of the little boys bopped her on the head with a plastic toy. The dog barked, wanting food. Her head pounded, throat ached with unshed tears. People needed her. She rose, pressed her skirt down.
“Yes, no, who knows. But I am late for work. Will you be all right here with all this chaos?” She pointed to the kids on the floor. “The nanny will be here at noon. I … Jack was supposed to be home already.” she looked up, confused when she heard the door open, and the clink of keys, watch and fountain pen being deposited in their appointed spaces on the table by the front door. “He flew in on the red eye from the west coast last night,” Sara sat back down, suddenly exhausted and needing her husband’s arms around her more than her next meal.
Jack strolled in, still dressed in dark suit pants and a thoroughly travel-wrinkled white shirt. Her heart did its usual roll at the sight of him. But he didn’t look at her. More than once she’d demanded time to talk, requested his undivided attention for some serious conversation about his distance. He kept coming up with excuses to avoid her and given how chaotic their lives were with two kids, a dog and very busy careers, excuses were easy to come by. So she had held back the one thing she knew he required, telling him flat out that she would not be sleeping with him until they cleared the air with a long talk. They had not had sex, or actually exchanged words beyond the necessary logistics of work and children for seven months.
Jack smiled down at Katie who’d latched onto him, kissed her and was staring down at the two little boys. Brandis was standing up holding onto the couch, a recent trick and one Sara had dreaded since it meant mobility for a kid who was never still anyway. He made his slow way to the edge of the leather ottoman glaring at Gabriel whose bright blond hair was back lit from the sun coming through the large window. They were in a mortal battle over a single dump truck and warfare was escalating fast. Brandis had already pushed Gabe down on his butt once, but the other boy quickly recovered. In a funny toddler attempt at diversion, he’d handed Brandis a matchbox car giving Gabe enough time to grab the obnoxiously orange truck and drop to his knees to make a swift crawling getaway. Since Brandis seemed stuck hanging onto the furniture, he wailed and threw the car, hitting his sister in the temple, then dropped to all fours and chased Gabe to the kitchen. Katie followed them. “Mom!” She yelled. “They’re feeding the dog Cheerios. That okay?”
By the time Jack had arrived Brandis was in full-throated fury, just as Sara was trying to leave the house. The boy made a crawling beeline for his father, and Gabe followed. He was already pretty steady on his feet, the cheap plastic toy clutched to his chest as if it were the Hope diamond. The dog brought up the rear, lapping up the little round circles of processed sugar dropped in their wake.
“Hey sport,” Jack plucked his son from the floor, kissed him then did a double take when he saw the other boy. “Well hello there. Little Rob. Wow.”
Sara watched the scene unfold, silent, but thankful he at least acknowledged his own son. Since Brandis had such a raging temper he was usually screaming about something or throwing things or in his crib for a time out, which meant Jack could ignore him, leaving the discipline to her. Gabe stared up at Jack, thumb in his mouth, the truck still held tight.
“Pa!” Brandis glared at his father. “Mine.” He pointed down at Gabe. Brandis had developed clear speech patterns early and was on the verge of walking at a year as well. The kid was an eerie mirror image of the man holding him, Sara observed for the thousandth time. Jack bent down and put Brandis on the floor. The boy lunged for the truck but his father held him back.
“No. Share,” he said, reaching over and snagging one of the zillions of trucks scattered around the room. “Yours.” He pressed an identical cheap blue dump truck to Brandis’ small chest. The boy’s face lit up with joy and he dropped to all fours and rolled the thing back to the kitchen with Gabe tottering along behind, so they could resume kitchen demolition by cereal. The eager dog scampered after them.

“It’s not rocket science. Neither of you guys were cut out to manage a restaurant that’s all. You wanted to manage your kitchen, Blake his brewery. And you kept hiring dumbasses to handle the front of the house for you. I’m organized and know how to deal with the staff. No big deal.” She started to sit but Rob gripped her arm.
“Please, come back home, Lila. I…I miss you, I miss us so much.”
She shivered at his words. “I don’t know, Rob. I mean, maybe you and I aren’t meant to be. Not without—”
Rob’s broad shoulders slumped and he looked so completely bereft it was almost funny, if it weren’t so shitty. She let her gaze travel down his apron-covered torso and her palm itched to untie it, to hold him and kiss him until he couldn’t stand it another minute. A bright pulse of erotic energy hit her core, making her gasp. She watched him clench and unclench his fists, then sit again, running his hand through his hair. She couldn’t resist. She touched it, ran her fingers through its silky yellow softness.
The bartenders called out and she waved to them. The main lights flickered then went off, plunging them into dark. His eyes held hers, their deep brown lit from the street. “I need you,” she whispered. Then she pulled him to his feet, wrapped herself around him. The kiss spoke words she wished she could say, and hoped he heard.
Just when he gripped her hair to hold her closer she tore herself away. “I need this,” she whispered as she untied his apron. He stayed still as it dropped to the floor and she popped the button on his jeans. “Please,” she leaned into his ear as she slid the zipper down and fisted his shaft. He groaned as she pushed him back towards the bar then went down on her knees. He tasted just like she remembered, and the tilt of hips, the sweet sound of his moans as she kept her fist moving and sucked the head of his cock between her lips were like music to her ears.
She slipped her other hand under his balls, stroked the smooth skin there. He gripped her hair. “Lila,” He grunted. “Stop.” But she didn’t.
Suddenly she was on her feet, folded into his arms and he was bending her back over the table, sending all their charts, phones and one empty beer glass to the floor. He ripped her panties off with one flick of his wrist, shoved her skirt up. “Oh, yes. Robert,” she threaded her fingers in his hair, met his lips and they cried out as one. The glorious feel of her man inside her, finally, again, made her want to cry but she didn’t. “Fuck me, hard. Now.”
“God,” He gripped her ass, thrust deep and slow then withdrew, biting down on her lower lip when she tightened herself around him. “Oh hell yes,” He moaned into her neck increasing his rhythm, pounding into her, making the table’s iron base screech against the concrete floor. She wrapped her legs around him, leaned her head back and let the orgasm lift her, take her and spin her around. “Damn, I have missed that,” He said, looking deep into her soul as she pulsed and thrummed from the climax.
She held his face in her hands, kept moving her hips. “Come now, Robert. Give it to me. Give me all of it.” He shuddered, then kissed her and did as he was told. She shivered, held him close. “I love you. But I’m not moving back in. Not yet. We have a long way to go and I want to make sure you’re sure. That you aren’t just doing this because you think you have to. Because of Gabe, or Blake’s memory or whatever.”
He withdrew from her, stood, and zipped his jeans back up. She sat on the edge of the table, terrified but certain.
“That’s fine,” he picked up the apron. “I’ll get the broom.” He started to turn but she grabbed his arm.
“Don’t shut down on me. I mean it. I want us to handle this together. To grieve together. And I want to plan a two-year memorial for him at the lake house.”
Rob shut his eyes. But she kept talking. “Listen to me, please.” He opened them, and the pain there she knew matched what she felt every damn day. “I want you, I want us to be together. I want another baby. I want to sell that house filled with everything that was Blake and buy another one. But I want something else even more. I want you to be certain you really love me.”
He sucked in a breath, let the silence spin out about a half minute too long for her taste. She let go of him. “I’ll clean it up. Go home. Gabe’s at your house this week, and we both know he won’t sleep unless you’re there.”
Rob opened his mouth, but Lila shook her head. Proud of herself but at the same time in misery for what she may still yet lose, she watched as he went out the back door of the kitchen without another word.

and........hold onto your panties kids.....the trailer!  (it rocks)

the buy links:
Stewart Realty series books 1-5 AND a pre-order link for the paperback of Escalation Clause

Pre order for Ebook of Escalation Clause (all formats)

FLOOR TIME (book one) is kick ass and taking names sales-wise!  Get started on this compelling series today!  You still have time to read the first 5.....

Click here for my favorite excerpts from the first three.


1 comment:

Tina Donahue said...

Sounds awesome! :) Congrats on this great series.