Wind Dancer series
by Jianne Carlo
Wind Dancer Book One
Rolan Paxton, the Boston Buffalos’ celebrated wide receiver, dominates the football world for twelve years. Fame, fortune falls into his lap. He rides the rainbow, collecting championship game wins and women. Disillusioned, unable to pinpoint exactly what’s missing, he runs into Sarita Khan, the nose-in-a-book classmate whose virginity he claimed on prom night twelve years earlier.
Sarita never thought she’d see Rolan again. Notre Dame recruited him two days after prom, two days after he took her virginity. What were the odds of her son’s father chartering the luxury yacht she’s crewing for twelve years later?
And that he still makes her burn like he did on prom night?
Sarita wants Rolan, but she wants her independence.
Rolan’s a control freak bent on domination. Determined to master Sarita, Rolan slaps on the manacles—and turns this trip to Monaco into a pleasure cruise.
This book was originally released as Manacled in June of 2008, and has been substantially updated and re-edited for this edition.
Genre: Contemporary RomanceManhandled Purchase links: Amazon ARe Smashwords Kobo B&N
Content/Theme(s): Sports, Football, Second chance
Release Date: December 3, 2015
Publisher: Hartwood Publishing
Excerpt, Notorious, Carnal & More
Rolan Anthony Paxton’s dawn fantasy had him in a state of rapture.
Stifling an automatic wince, he lifted one eyelid and looked at the blonde servicing him. Cindy-something, great boobs and a god-awful, high-pitched, nails-on-the-blackboard voice. He should have picked the other one.
The yacht’s engines hummed to life, and the boat vibrated and rocked. An open porthole let Mediterranean brine into the room, along with an unexpected morning chill. Monte Carlo’s perpetual traffic buzzed in the background.
At least she hadn’t stopped using those wonderful hands, but that happy thought evaporated with the dig of a nail.
“Ouch,” he winced and glanced down. “Watch the nails, babe.”
“Oops, sorry.” She cupped a hand over her mouth to suppress a nervous giggle.
A barrage of firm knocks hit the cabin door, and he cut to the sound, mood souring and lips curling.
Figured—it took him longer and longer these days, and the slightest mishap turned him off. Age, it had to be, since he was thirty-one and tired of the same old, same old.
Money, fame, success—he had it all and nothing counted anymore.
He knew he should be grateful. How many athletes made it to the championship, not once, not twice, but three times?
Startled out of his brooding by a repeat of rapping on the burnished mahogany door, he shot a look at the blonde and ordered, “Cover up.”
In a louder tone, he called, “Come in.”
Without looking up, he snagged the cover sheet and began drawing it over his calves. He stopped when an audibly gasped “Oh, no” penetrated the silence.
His head snapped up, and a stunned paralysis claimed his limbs.
He’d never forgotten those eyes, the color of liquid caramel, that wild hair, every shade of a fiery sunset, and a bottom lip so plump, so inviting that one night he hadn’t been able to resist nibbling on it for hours.
Sarita Khan, the nose-in-a-book classmate he’d been forced to serve four Saturdays of detention with during his last year in high school. The girl whose virginity he’d taken on prom night after breaking up with the captain of the cheerleading team. Those sweet elfin features haunted his dreams intermittently over the last twelve years. Adrenalin surged in his veins, and his heartbeat accelerated.
Sarita, his Sarita.
That bronze-dusted complexion paled beneath his scrutiny and she swayed. The breakfast tray balanced on her forearms listed back and forth. She swallowed, slapped a palm onto the table cemented to the left, and squeezed her eyes shut.
“Are you okay?” He hopped out of the bed, oblivious to his nudity, and stalked forward. “Here, let me take that.”
For a few seconds she gripped the tray tighter, but she didn’t lift her lids. Then her hold slackened.
He tugged the tray away and set it on the table. Eyes Krazy Glued to her delicate, heart-shaped face, raking a quick assessment of the changes over the last twelve years, he forgot Cindy, the boat, the injuries plaguing his career—everything save Sarita and sweet memories. The compulsion to trace the soft curve of her cheek, cup her face, and suck that lower lip was defeated only by a nervous giggle in the background. Rolan stifled an internal groan, and he fisted his hands.
Sarita’s jaw clenched, and the pulse at her throat beat like a cartoon character’s heart, thump, thump, in time to the rise and fall of her chest.
“Thank you,” she murmured, still refusing to meet his gaze.
And the memory of that low throaty voice during their lovemaking cascaded like a waterfall, showering chill bumps on the back of his neck. Enthralled, stun-gunned, he didn’t react when she twirled, marched to the door, exited, and slammed it so hard it reverberated.
Cindy-something, the woman in his bed, began a torrent of idle chitchat. It never penetrated his mind and became an irritating background buzz. Rolan slumped into the chair and stared unseeing at the laden breakfast tray.
Those four Saturdays they’d spent together in the detention room had started off as the worst punishment for a teenager in the throes of athletic vigor. King of the senior year, dating the cheerleader captain and giving it to her almost every day, his arrogance knew no bounds. At that time in his life, he believed himself invincible. And he was, on the football field.
Little Sarita Khan, from the wrong side of the tracks, the product of a mixed marriage, her father from Bombay, her mother an Irish woman with a riot of flaming tresses and the temperament to go with it. Mrs. Khan cleaned houses for the country club members, and he often caught glimpses of her at his friends’ residences. The father, the famous town drunk, had disappeared sometime between middle and high school, or so he’d heard.
Her father was Hindu, and in the stodgy close-knit town of Orangeville, it didn’t pay to be anything but Bible Belt Christian. Until that four-week detention, he’d been vaguely aware of the town’s disapproval when Sarita’s father attempted to celebrate some exotic Hindu festival. All of them were shunned after that, and she’d faded into the background at school.
“Rolan, sweetie. You’re not eating. The food’s gonna get cold,” whined Cindy-something, breaking into his reminisces.
He stifled another groan as he took in the clothes strewn across the burgundy Persian rug, the rumpled bed sheets.
What had Sarita seen?
Closing his eyes, he tried to picture the scene she’d interrupted. He choked back a howl. What a disastrous way to reunite with the girl who’d haunted his dreams for the last twelve years. Shame had him stumbling back to the bed.
His knees collapsed and his butt slammed onto the mattress.
When had it happened? When had he gone from shiny and idealistic to contemptuous, egotistic, and unscrupulous? At least where women were concerned.
Elbows jammed onto his thighs, forehead propped in his palms, he closed his eyes against the mortifying ignominy burning his flesh. Sarita had once adored him, but now she must despise and scorn him.
And rightly so.
He didn’t even know Cindy’s last name. Didn’t care to know. The Rolan Sarita had known in high school might have been bigheaded, but never would he have sacrificed his morals. Shit to that. He’d abandoned any sexual ethics after his first championship game win.
Twelve years ago, he’d taken her virginity.
And on each twenty-ninth of May for every year since, he’d awoken aroused, with her face burned on his pupils.
He downed a glass of orange juice.
How had Sarita ended up on Sir Geoffrey Stanford’s yacht in Monte Carlo? Where had she been all this while?
After he’d been recruited by Notre Dame and had to cut out of Orangeville almost overnight, he’d tried to contact her time and time again. But, she’d dropped off the planet. Her cell number didn’t work, she disappeared from social media, and her email address bounced back.
Over the years, he often wondered if he’d been able to see her again as he had planned—no—had been determined to, what would have happened? Sarita was the kind of girl you took home to Mom, the marrying kind. They’d been too young to make things work back then, and marriage certainly hadn’t been on his mind. The bright lights of football and championship stardom had been his sole goal. But, he had been addicted to her laugh, the way she felt in his arms, the molasses taste of her mouth.
A church bell rang eight times, and his gaze fell upon the calendar displayed on his cell.
This had to be the hand of fate—Sarita reappearing in his life on their anniversary. This was a sign, a turning point for his career and the eternal lassitude of the last few years. Football had been his life to date, the game his only focus, his only reason for existence. For a while now he’d known but refused to acknowledge that the recurring injuries plaguing him signaled the end of his football career.
The image of Sarita’s sweet and sexy innocent face, her eyes sparkling, and her lips curving in a happy, genuine smile, made him jerk his head up in sudden determination. While his sports future hung in uncertainty, he knew, knew, that from that moment on, Sarita was going to be part of his life. And not for a fling or an affair, but for a relationship, a grounded and real relationship with marriage in mind.
His instincts had never failed him and his gut reactions always proved true even when he second-guessed them.
First things first.
Get rid of Cindy, gently.
Manhandled Purchase links: Amazon ARe Smashwords Kobo B&N
by Jianne Carlo
Wind Dancer Book Two
Terrence O’Connor knew all his flaws only too intimately, knew no woman could ever accept the sins of his past, knew he’d die alone. Su-Lin Taylor barges into his world and none of that matters anymore.
When Su-Lin’s mother dies, she discovers she has an uncle and aunt, a rich Hong Kong couple who whisk her away to Europe on a fairytale graduation trip. They promise to establish a trust fund for her, which means she’ll never have to worry about money again. Their first stop is France at an exclusive boutique hotel fronting the Mediterranean.
A silly mistake pits a naked Terry with a nude Su-Lin in the men’s steam room. Totally smitten, Terry manipulates Su-Lin’s uncle into a three-week cruise aboard his luxury yacht, the Glory.
Or so Terry thinks…
Adjoining cabins with a connecting door results in explosive sex. Su-Lin and Terry can’t keep their hands off each other, which so upsets her uncle he collapses with chest pains. A guilty Su-Lin insists on secrecy.
Mere days later, Terry finds Su-Lin unconscious. Hospital tests point to attempted murder.
Who’s trying to kill Su-Lin and why?
This book was originally released in 2009 and has been substantially revised and re-edited for this release.
Genre: Contemporary RomanceNotorious Purchase links: Amazon ARe Smashwords Kobo B&N
Content/Theme(s): Multicultural, Suspense
Release Date: December 3, 2015
Publisher: Hartwood Publishing
“While I appreciate the view of your sweet little body, darlin’, you do realize that this is the men’s steam room, not the women’s?”
Naked, lying on a neon orange beach towel, eyes covered by one forearm, Jenny Su-Lin Taylor didn’t react.
As the whiskied baritone rumbled into her foggy tranquility, she jerked to a sitting position. Frantic eyes darted left, then right, and took a frenzied sweep of the mists swirling around the small chamber. A thousand Japanese Taiko drums pounded a war beat in her ears. Blood surged to the rhythm, pulsing hysterical tattoos at her wrists, throat, and temples.
She stopped breathing, moving, thinking, when eyes the color of storm clouds racing across a typhoon sky manacled her gaze.
Fantasy and reality merged.
Thor, God of Battle and Thunder, materialized through dissipating, opaque steam curls.
High, sculpted cheekbones, a square, stubborn jawline chiseled by anvils, her most erotic fantasy come to life sprawled on the marble ledge opposite. Wheat-streaked hair fired with auburn glints brushed the broadest shoulders she’d ever seen. One knee bent, the man leaned on a thick, muscled forearm, Popeye biceps bulging.
He drained the oxygen out of Su-Lin’s lungs.
Out of the room.
All about her, magic pooled.
Balmy condensation caressed her shoulders, the barest sigh of enchantment escaped her lips, and the world, no, the universe, pivoted on the mythical deity reclining before her eyes, glorious in his nudity. She’s heartbeat cavorted into loud, insistent hammering, which swelled to fever pitch. She noticed small details—the way the faint dusting of golden hairs on his torso swirled to the right, a thick forefinger stroking peach-pink marble, his taut stomach lifting and falling.
Around his neck hung a gold chain, and a dazzling pendant with intricate engravings punctuated a chest so defined, so Norse god-like, her fingers tingled with the urge to trace each ridge…
Fire licked every inch of skin, flared up her spine, and connected with her brain, igniting a frenzied desire. She scrambled for the towel. Nails scraped the moist marble—she clutched shaky fingers around soft cotton and bounded off the bench. His size dwarfed all five–feet-five inches of her too-big-for-gymnastic-competition body.
A warrior-resolute gaze examined every inch of her roasting flesh, lingered on her B-cup breasts, and his mouth pursed as he studied her. The intensity of those slate eyes had her hands trembling, her fingers fumbling to drape the towel around her chest. She muttered a Mandarin curse when her waist-length, straight-as-a-pin black hair tangled with the wet material.
“You don’t have to leave, darlin’. We can always lock the door.”
Propped on an elbow, the man angled forward, full lips curling at the corners.
“I’m at your service, darlin’, whatever milady wishes.”
Her subconscious noted the slight hint of Irish brogue. Seconds later, his words registered, but their meaning took longer to comprehend.
She couldn’t manage anything more than a panted “Oh.”
The Pause button that had suspended her brain functions thus far clicked off. Fast-forward took over, and she twirled around, intent on escape.
“I like the view from behind too, darlin’. That’s one fine backside.” He ended his pronouncement with a chuckle, which made her skin smolder even more.
Notorious Purchase links: Amazon ARe Smashwords Kobo B&N
by Jianne Carlo
Wind Dancer Book Three
Money, power, and women, all come easy to Harrison Indiana Ford. Yet he wants more -to ensure his daddy’s oil fortune goes to him - not Delora - the stepmother who seduced him as a teenager. If Harry doesn’t marry a virgin and produce an heir before he turns thirty-two, Delora inherits it all. D-day and unpredictable circumstances force Harry to hire a matchmaker and marry a stranger.
Martine’s survived the streets of Haiti’s capital with her virginity intact, but she’s no innocent. Fleeing persecution, she stows away on a cargo ship, and enters France illegally. Desperate for the million Euro Harry offers so she can bring her ailing grandmother to France, she signs the pre-nuptial contract using forged documents.
Delora’s not about to let a billion dollars slip through her hands. There are too many ways to sabotage a relationship, prevent a pregnancy. And it’s so easy to foster suspicion and hatred where there’s no trust. What Delora doesn’t count on is the explosive sexual relationship that develops between Harry and Martine.
As lust morphs into caring, Delora’s detectives search for Martine’s hidden secrets. How did Martine get from Haiti to France?
This book was originally released in September of 2010, and has been substantially updated and re-edited for this edition.
Genre: Contemporary RomanceCarnal Purchase links: Amazon ARe Smashwords Kobo B&N
Content/Theme(s): Billionaire, Stowaway
Release Date: December 3, 2015
Publisher: Hartwood Publishing
The silhouette of a slender female, one hand braced on her right hip, came into Harry’s line of vision. She walked with the lithe grace of a gazelle, and his lungs faltered with each slow step she took.
Shadows dipped and danced, hiding her features from his sight. When she turned her head to greet Austen with a husky murmur, he absorbed her profile. High cheekbones, an arrogant nose so perfect it belonged in a plastic surgeon’s after catalog, and a sloped Cleopatra brow. She kept her head averted for five more strides, and his gaze slid over bare feet encased in four-inch stilettos.
Her legs went on and on, long, toned, and shaped so fine no Vegas showgirl he’d ever dated could match such perfection. Lost in appreciation of her nymph-like curves, he hadn’t yet made it to her eyes when she halted. Not in any particular hurry, he lingered on a three-inch-wide leather belt hugging her narrow waist. A twinge of disappointment caused his forehead to pucker—B-cup breasts he guessed, but barely so.
All in all, he decided, raising his eyes, not bad.
She lifted her chin, and their eyes met.
Oxygen left the room.
A water-in-the-ears sensation hushed all sound. Her lips moved, but he didn’t hear a word, just had an impression of a musical throaty voice. Images bounced back and forth. Popup pics of the woman from Grasse blazed across his brain. Her long legs encased in smoky nylons, the sexy black garter belt she struggled with, the glimpse of pouty pussy lips, and the curls of dark pubic hair.
For a second, for a hairbreadth instant, he thought he’d found the woman from Grasse, the one with odd-colored eyes. She’d worn a mask like the other catering staff, but there was no mistaking the deep blue of her left iris or the rich brown of the right. Passion and fierce determination flared in the way she tilted her chin, and her lips curled in a sneer, as if he hadn’t caught her half-naked in an empty room, and as if she wasn’t in the wrong.
A rose hue darkened twin spots at the apex of this woman’s cheekbones, and her eyes—Harry did a double take—her unremarkable coal eyes flickered down his form. Her blush deepened into a delectable cherry shade.
Mouthwatering, Harry followed the direction of her gaze to his groin and knew his complexion matched this beauty’s. He wore faded jeans, a brown belt with a silver buckle, and tented couldn’t begin to describe how his erection strained against the tight denim.
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Be on the lookout for Jianne Carlo's future release(s): Prymal Hunger coming Spring 2016
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