EXCERPT: Ingenue: Introducing Rose d’Vine

ingenue_new lineAlright, my pretties… as promised, here is an excerpt of my new book from Ellora’s Cave!  Presenting…. “Ingenue.” 

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Rose turned and began to loosen the ribbon ties that crisscrossed over her back. The bodice was so tight that lines, clearly visible to the front row, had been cut into the flesh of her back. She could feel each one, but like the gentle sting that came with a tangle of curl, she was used to this slight discomfort. Craved it, even. Despite being so constricted, she moved with a dancer’s grace, twisting and turning until she faced them again. A coquettish smile played on her lips as she delighted in their growls of frustration. She was teasing them. Only at the last possible moment would she reveal the hidden pearlescent flesh.
Her middle, soft and curvaceous, was smoothed into an unyielding cylindrical form that tapered toward her hips. Her ample breasts peeked just over the top hem of the undergarment and if anyone had looked closely, they would have seen just the hint of rose-café areola exposed in a flurry of lace. She moved her hands over her hips and up her sides until finally arriving at the sumptuous globes of her bosom. She caressed them with her palms, her bright-red nails standing out over the milky skin. She tugged gently at the corset, a tiny promise of what was surely to come. They could hear the tiny snaps hidden at the front of the corset begin to give way. The climax of the song had arrived and Rose ceased to move. Only her fingertips, gently working free the closures as she sang, gave any sign of movement. The crowd below was holding its collective breath. They knew that at any second she would pull the corset open with a savage flourish. The notes in her voice climbed higher as she strutted down the runway until finally, inevitably, she arrived at the end. Then, standing there in the midst of her admirers,
Rose held the final strains of the song, pulling the corset fully open and tossing it into the audience. The pasties over each nipple and the web of rhinestones over her sex glistened in the dim spotlight. She gave them only a moment to stare at her near-naked form. They reached and hissed at her, everyone wanting to caress even just the smallest bit of her flesh. Rose smiled and waved, blowing kisses to them all as they passed around the silk corset, pressing it to their noses to inhale her womanly perfume.

“Easy, boys,” she sighed, still breathless. “I wouldn’t want anyone to have a stroke.” Turning on her heel, she walked toward the wings. She paused for only a moment. “At least not until you get home.”

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That Rose… I just love her.  I want to be her when I grow up.  At any rate, if you liked that bit, hop on over to Ellora’s Cave by clicking the image and grab a copy of “Ingenue” hot off the presses.  You won’t be sorry…

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Show Me Your Burlesque, or RELEASE DAY!!

ingenue_new lineWell, it’s finally here!! You can officially purchase my new short, “Ingenue,” from Ellora’s Cave!  It’s a sexy little historical romance that takes place near the end of the Roaring 20s.  It’s the era just before “talkies,” when Vaudeville was king.  Variety show circuits dominated the entertainment industry, bringing song and dance, bawdy comedy acts and striptease to the masses.  Though our story takes place in the 20s, burlesque dates back much farther.  Theaters in Victorian London staged popular parodies of grand opera and Shakespearean plays that had comedic musical numbers and raunchy humor.  Of course, it didn’t take long for the art form to cross the pond into America where, like everything else, it was made bigger, raunchier and rowdier.  Striptease was added to the mix and the shows became more of a variety-style format with comedians, magicians, singers and short versions of the English style that might parody a popular play or some political issue of the time.  Striptease, for obvious reasons, became a major draw for the shows.  However, rules became more and more stringent and the performers found creative ways to get past obscenity laws.  Pasties and props kept the essentials covered and the routines were more about the tease and less about the strip.  The “hoofers” were not only sexy, but talented singers, dancers and comediennes.  Stars such as Gypsy Rose Lee, Sally Rand and Blaze Starr emerged as classy sex symbols of their time.

“Ingenue” is a story about this Golden Age of Burlesque.  The heroine, Rose D’Vine, is a burlesque dancer, desperate to escape the seedy New York theater scene and break into movies.  She’s so desperate that she’s willing to sell her love to the highest bidder– a horrible meal ticket named Charlie Potter.  He’s abusive and selfish, but he’s got connections in high places and he’s promised to make her a star.  What Rose really needs is a hero.  Enter Stefan, the soft-spoken stagehand.  He’s loved Rose for years and wants to take her away from Charlie.  He wants to make all of her dreams come true, but what does a poor immigrant have to offer.  Only his love.

Stay tuned for an excerpt, but in the meantime….

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Never fall in love with a hoofer. That’s the advice given to Stefan—advice he immediately ignores when he falls head-over-heels in love with burlesque dancer Rose, the shimmying, corseted star of the Footlight Theatre. But wicked, wounded Rose is far out of the humble stagehand’s reach.

Rose has stars in her eyes—and bruises on her face. As she suffers abuse at the hands of a cruel patron, she dreams of the day when she’ll find her way out of her nightmare and into the arms of the passionate, protective Stefan.

Inside scoop:  This book contains scenes of domestic violence before the heroine fights back and finds her true hero.