#PromoTour “S.I.B.s: The Society of Intellectual Beings” by Iris Bolling

cover

~~~

S.I.B.S: THE SOCIETY OF INTELLECTUAL BEINGS

BY IRIS BOLLING

In the mortal world, it is believed that there are six degrees of separation. 
That number diminishes within The Society of Intellectual Beings. 
The bloodlines are intertwined, blurring the degrees of separation. 

Network Executive, Wade Tyson gets a story that is a little too close to home. His biological parents, who were convicted of multiple murders thirty years ago, die suspiciously within 24 hours of each other. Wade investigates their deaths which leads to questions surrounding the original crime. During the investigation, Wade opens the door to a multiple generational experiment to create a community of exceptionally intelligent humans. To complicate matters, these beings have been immersed in mainstream society.

What if a society of children were conceived to rule the world based on intellectual logic?

Wade discovers he is connected to the Society of Intellectual Beings in more ways than one. Through a series of journals from his now deceased mother, Wade has the experience of not only reading her words but absorbing her thoughts. Each time he reads one of her journals, certain powers are bestowed upon him. The powers come without instructions or warnings, but he needs them to complete the task of stopping evil forces from populating the world with S.I.B.s. He, with the help of his adopted brothers, is the only ones who can save the humans from themselves.

What if the society’s disposable children rise up to confront the new world order?  

Wade finds himself conflicted when he discovers each of his adopted brothers were created in the Society of Intellectual Beings but were disposed of as children. Doors to a different world open as Wade tries to find answers to questions that will impact not only his life, but the world.
At one point, Wade is forced to ask himself

What if the S.I.B.s, who are directed by their evil creator, infiltrated the highest level of government?

What if??????

 

AVAILABLE ON

AMAZON | APPLE | BARNES & NOBLE | KOBO

ADD ON GOODREADS

~~~

SIB promo 5

EXCERPT

PROLOGUE

Present Day

Every day, for close to thirty years, Star Bond wrote a message to her son from a prison cell. The messages weren’t long, just thoughts she would have shared with him had they’d been together as parents and children should be. Just five to ten lines of wisdom written in black-and-white 100-page composition notebooks. Using both sides of the pages, scribing at least five messages per page, there was a total of well over ten thousand gems of wisdom. The God of her spirit has assured her that the messages would be delivered to her son upon her entrance into the afterlife. Star was also told this would be her last night on this earth. The earlier attempt to end her life with the injection of a drug into her system failed. Now, those who sought to harm her had to shift gears. However, before the night was over, the deed would be done. Tonight’s message was important in preparing her son for his future. She thought long and hard about what she would write, then began.

In the mortal world, it is believed that there are 

six degrees of separation. That number diminishes 

within The Society. The bloodlines are intertwined, 

blurring the degrees of separation. You, my son, are 

bestowed with the powers of the Gods. You alone can 

save the mortals from themselves. 

Star read the message to ensure it stated what she intended. Satisfied, she nodded, then placed her pen down. Star stood, secured the composition notebook next to her bunk bed on top of ten others. Then she proceeded with her nightly routine.

Taking her time, she brushed her black, waist-length hair, using strategic strokes to keep it straight. Then, starting from the nape of her neck, she threaded her fingers through her hair, creating one long braid. Thoughts of her husband, and the way he would massage the oils onto her scalp, caused her to long for his gentle touch. Her heart ached with the fact that the feeling would not come again until they united in the afterlife. Completing the task, she sat in the center of the floor with her legs folded under her bottom, closed her eyes, then prayed. Her prayer tonight was not for wisdom, as it had been in the past. The prayer tonight was for her son to one day understand the powers he possessed and the sacrifices that were made so that he could live.

The sounds of her surroundings were wiped from her mind until the footsteps came. It was time.

The footsteps of death were distinct. She knew those steps were coming for her. Knowing what members of The Society were capable of, Star took one last moment to thank the ancestors for guiding her thus far, then prayed for continued guidance for her son.

Clearing all thoughts of the boy she had not seen in years, she allowed her husband’s face to take over her mind. Godwin Bond may not have been from her tribe, but he was her kindred spirit. Thoughts of him filled her heart with joy. She asked that upon learning of her death, he would not suffer but rejoice in knowing they would be together soon.

The electronic buzz from the door indicated a person was free to walk inside her cell. He was alone. No witnesses to the deed he had been tasked with, Star surmised.

“I understand you had visitors today, Star.”

Star continued with her prayers as if no words had been spoken. She could sense the presence staring down at her. He was attempting to penetrate her mind. It was not the first time, but she had it on good authority it would be the last. She cleared her mind of everything except the Gods, who were now surrounding her in spirit.

“Your attempts to block my entry will be futile tonight. You broke the rule when you spoke with outsiders. The consequence is death.”

Star’s mind was now amongst the clouds. There was no fear, for the Gods were there to protect her spirit. This man could have her human body.

“There is a moment between life and death when you will no longer control your mind. It will be open to me. I will obtain the information you have guarded all these years.”

The air from his breath indicated he was close to her face. Star could feel his massive hands as he wrapped them around her throat. Instinctively, her eyes opened, looking straight into the eyes of death.

Whispers of voices from other prisoners who sensed something was awry in her cell filtered through the air. The voices increasing in volume.

Her hands grabbed the murderous arms of the man pulling her from the floor by her neck. Her small frame was lifted and slammed against the cement wall. A thick rope encircled her neck, then was thrown up around the bars in the window. His hands fell to her waist, holding her weight to keep the force of the rope from snapping her neck. He wanted to prolong the moment to try to gather what he could from her mind.

That was something she could not allow.

She wasn’t fighting what was to come. Her ancestors were gathered, waiting for her, armed with the knowledge that her son would retaliate for what was done on this night and a day long ago. What was to come gave Star the strength to do what was needed. The murderer could not steal her thoughts. She’d die on her terms.

She kicked forward, causing the man to fall backwards, releasing her body. The rope snapped her neck.

Star was no longer of this world.

~~~

SIB teaser 1_3

~~~

ABOUT IRIS BOLLING

USA Today bestselling author Iris Bolling published her first novel, Once You’ve Touched the Heart in 2008. This self-published work was the first installment to the popular Heart Series which has captivated the hearts of readers and awarded Iris the Emma Award as Debut Author of the Year in 2010. Iris has received the honor of being named Author of The Year several times since the inception of her career. This trailblazing author, producer and screenwriter was also named Conversations Magazine Top 25 Women of the Year two consecutive years in a row.

In 2017, Iris added another series to her lineup, The Dunning Trilogy. Her first novel from the series earned her the Best Suspense Romance of 2018.

From her platform during various guest-speaking engagements, Iris has encouraged others to follow their dreams. With the recent implementation of her G.I.Y. workshops Iris shares her experience, knowledge, and talents with others to assist them along the way. Encouraging everyone to simply, BELIEVE!

Iris currently lives in Richmond, Virginia where she is working on her next book, movie project and/or workshop.

 

CONNECT WITH IRIS BOLLING

AUTHOR SITE | FACEBOOKTWITTER | INSTAGRAM | GOODREADS BOOKBUB 

~~~

The Honey Magnolia Company Logo

~~~

 

#PromoTour “Takedown: An accidental marriage romance” by Evelyn Sola

Takedown cover

~~~

TAKEDOWN

BY EVELYN SOLA

Mellie

I was not a gambler. No way. I’ve built an existence free of risk and adventure. From my career to a small life with my closest family. I was not going to do anything to jeopardize my heart. But when my neighbor and number one menace to my safe plans showed up in Vegas, I did what every adventurous (not!) woman would do. I got drunk and married the man.

Adam

What happens in Vegas is supposed to stay in Vegas. Then, I went and married Mellie Dupree. That woman I’ve been chasing for two years is now my wife. She claims she doesn’t remember our wedding, but I was there, and I know she’s not telling the truth. Then again, neither am I.

AVAILABLE ON

AMAZON 

ALSO AVAILABLE ON KINDLE UNLIMITED

ADD ON GOODREADS

~~~

Takedown teaser 3

~~~

EXCERPT

CHAPTER 1

MELLIE

The down pillow contours my head, shielding me from the cool air coming from above. The temperature in the room is not only due to the ceiling fan, but to the extremely efficient central air. I sigh happily and cover myself with the white, down comforter, basking between sleep and reality. I don’t remember ever being in a bed so comfortable.

I smile and reach for another pillow to hug, but my hand hits something else. Skin. I think I’m touching a stomach. A very hard and toned stomach, which I think belongs to a man. I touch it again, and whoever the stomach belongs to moans softly. I quickly pull my hand away and wait for things to come into focus.

I might not know where I am, but I know where I’m not. I don’t have a ceiling fan in my room, and the air conditioning in my bedroom at home works well, but not as efficiently as this one. Besides, I live in Boston, and if there’s one thing I don’t need in Boston in January, it’s air conditioning. I’m not in my bedroom at my brother’s two family house, in the first floor apartment where we live. The one I share with him and his family.

I’m in Sin City celebrating my friend’s wedding.

One of my best friends got married yesterday. It was a big group, full of her family and friends. It wasn’t the typical Vegas wedding with Elvis officiating the vows. It was a beautiful formal affair held in the ballroom of the Bellagio hotel. I cried when I watched her father walk her down the aisle, the epitome of happiness with her wide smile and inner glow. I’d wiped my wet cheeks with a tissue I had in my purse, and when I had looked up, it was to find familiar, piercing blue eyes watching me from across the aisle. I normally look away from his stares, but that time, I held it, and even in the big room, the electricity between us sizzled.

My phone buzzes from across the room. Despite not having a headache, I know I must have had some drinks if the dryness in my mouth is any indication. It’s so bad it feels like something died in there days ago. My bedmate moans again, turns over in the bed, and wraps an arm around me, forcing a loud gasp out of me by his sudden movement. He takes it a step further and puts a heavy leg across my thighs, keeping me securely in place. He nuzzles the back of my neck and sighs in contentment.

I stop breathing and my body goes completely still. I close my eyes and squeeze, hoping that when I open them again, I’ll be at home in my bed, and this will have been nothing but a dream.

But that doesn’t happen, and a dooming feeling hits. My stomach drops, and I feel my heart start to accelerate. I don’t want to do this, but I take a deep breath, and I turn my head, refusing to look at him, hoping and praying that it’s not who I think it is. But his scent is a dead giveaway. No one else smells like that, and in this instant, I know I did something I can’t take back. Images of last night start to surface, but I push them back down, refusing to acknowledge the reality of this situation.

It’s been a long time since I’ve been intimate with a man, and I squeeze between my legs. When I feel no soreness, I expel a breath of relief. I know whatever happened in this room does not extend beyond sleeping. Unless whoever that is has a small package. I shouldn’t have doubted it. He never would have done something like that. Besides, he’s wanted me for such a long time that I know he’d want me to remember.

Or maybe it’s not him. The altitude is not the same in Vegas as it is in Boston, and I’m sure more than one man uses this cologne. Maybe I went out and decided to let loose. Leaving behind the January northeastern weather will do that to any girl. I remember telling my sister-in-law about my plans to find a man for a night.

“Whatever happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.” I had winked at her and nudged her shoulder with mine. She laughed and told me to have fun.

My bedmate lets out a snore, and I push his leg off. Making as little noise as possible, I take a deep breath and turn to face him. The cover is now askew, leaving exposed a long, muscular leg filled with dark hair. I close my eyes and say a short prayer.

Yeah, now you pray, Mellie, you heathen. God ain’t about to listen to you now. 

He’s in black boxer briefs, and his morning wood is saluting the ceiling. I swallow involuntarily and do everything in my power to stop myself from wrapping my hand around the steel pipe of a dick that’s just inches away, but I chase the thought out of my dirty mind. Yeah, no way was that thing inside me. It would have ripped me in half. It’s not this particular dick that’s got my mouth watering. It’s the lack of dick in my life that’s making me yearn for this one.

His ribbed white t-shirt has ridden up, and a perfect six pack is on full display just inches away from my greedy hand. I let out a whimper, knowing for sure that the Lord did not in fact hear my prayers. Or maybe he did and decided to ignore me. It would serve my heathen ass right.

I exhale and continue to look past the broad chest. I see the familiar gold chain around his neck with the signature cross, and I know that God has indeed forsaken me. Again.

My hand itches to touch the chiseled chin with about three days worth of stubble. Just like it does every time I see him, but I can’t confirm my worst nightmare. He has a pillow covering his face. I’ve come too far to stop now though. I gently pull the pillow and close my eyes in resignation. I count to ten, and like I’m pulling off a band aid, I open my eyes and learn my fate.

The bottom falls out from under me. It’s my worst nightmare. It’s him.

Adam Flynn. Lying in bed next to me in nothing but a t-shirt and boxer briefs with his eyes closed, looking like a Greek God.

But he’s Irish, Mellie, not Greek. 

He’s gorgeous. Always has been. There is no denying it. Perfect skin with just a tinge of pink. He has full lips, and I yearn to run my tongue along them. His thick, dark hair is a mess and sticking out from all sides, and that only makes him look sexier.

I jump off the bed as if I’m on fire and look down at my bare legs. I’m in nothing but my underwear and a white tank top. The one I had on underneath my sheer kimono top. I look around the room like a cornered animal, relieved only when I see my clothes perfectly folded next to the big screen TV. I quickly put on my jeans. Adam moans again, and when I look at him, he shivers and goosebumps spread over his body. I tiptoe to the bed, careful enough not to wake him, gently lift the comforter, and cover that perfect body of his.

This room is much more extravagant than mine. A suite with a couch and minibar. There are two bottles of champagne on the table, one of them still sitting in an ice bucket. I walk over there and pick one up. Some French name I can’t pronounce. I find my phone and do a quick search of that champagne. The price ranges from three to five hundred dollars, and I can only imagine the up charge the Bellagio adds. And he got two. What an idiot. I know he can’t afford this on a middle school vice principal’s salary.

I refuse to give in to my guilt since I didn’t make him buy it. I’m pretty sure I tried to talk him out of it. I don’t even remember any of it.

Liar.

Needing to make my escape before he wakes up, I look around the room for my shoes. I see the black peep-toe wedges underneath the bed, and I get on my knees to reach for them. When I do, something catches the light, a sliver of sun coming through the blinds. I follow the flash, and I blink twice to erase what I’m seeing.

I hold up my hand, and right there, on my left ring finger is a fat, round, and crystal-clear diamond ring. It’s so clear that it must be fake. It’s bigger than the one my brother gave his wife. I could be mistaken, but I think it’s even bigger than the pink diamond ring one of my friends have. And right next to it is a platinum wedding band with small diamonds all around it.

“It can’t be real,” I whisper. I pull the ring off my finger and examine it, unsure of what to look for. A memory from last night hits. Drinks at a bar. Grabbing him and pulling him out of that bar and away from a tall, skinny bitch. There was a dare, but I chase the memory away. He would do this. He would put a wedding ring on my finger as a joke. I put both rings on the nightstand, but there’s an official looking form already there.

Curious, I pick it up. My stomach drops to the floor and the food I ate last night threatens to come up.

Party 1 – Flynn, Adam Finnegan

Party 2 – Dupree, Melanie Elyse

Another memory hits, but I refuse to dwell on it. I do something much worse instead. I look back at the document in my hand. My mouth has gotten drier, and my heart is beating so fast, I’m afraid it’s going to wake my sleeping—I can’t even think of the word to describe him.

My eyes finally land at the top of the form, but I close them before they can focus on the words. I inhale, say another prayer, convinced this time that I will be delivered. And once again, I’m forsaken. Right there in bold, black letters.

Clark County, Nevada. Certificate of Marriage.

A hand flies to my mouth and a sound of despair escapes. The piece of paper slips from my hand, floating in the air conditioned breeze until it lands on the floor. Without a second thought, I grab my shoes and purse and run out of the room, not even sure where I am, but when I step outside the door, I know I’m still in my same hotel, so I sprint to the elevator in my bare feet.

When I get to my room on the twelfth floor, I run to the bathroom, drop to my knees and empty the contents of my stomach. My eyes water and my throat burns. There’s no bitter taste of rancid alcohol or the putrid smell of last night’s dinner. Hardly anything comes up, and I end up gagging for what seems like forever. My body is like a ragdoll’s, hunched over the toilet as if I have no spine to support me. A loud sound escapes, and I realize I’m crying. I don’t remember the last time I cried, but in my Vegas hotel room, with no one there to witness it, I give in and weep.

What the hell have you done now, Melanie?

~~~

Takedown teaser1

~~~

ABOUT EVELYN SOLAEvelyn Sola

A Boston native, wife, mother, and wine enthusiast. If she’s not writing, thinking about writing, you will find her with a book in her hands. While a new publisher, she’s been writing for years, and she will continue to write for many years to come.

Evelyn is obsessed with assertive and confident men who will stop at nothing to get their woman. Her stories are filled with love, passion and humor.

She currently lives in Chicago, IL with her husband and two daughters.

CONNECT WITH EVELYN SOLA

FACEBOOKTWITTER | INSTAGRAM | TIKTOK | GOODREADS BOOKBUB AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE

~~~

The Honey Magnolia Company Logo

~~~

#PromoTour “The Bounce Back” by Addie Woolridge

book cover

~~~

THE BOUNCE BACK

BY ADDIE WOOLRIDGE

In this delightfully fiery rom-com from The Checklist author Addie Woolridge, even the worst situations have a silver lining.

Aspiring artist Neale Delacroix should be on top of the world. She’s landed a spot in an exclusive art program that’s sure to be her ticket to success, but then her best shot at stardom goes up in flames – literally. When her relationship follows suit, Neale finds herself a stone’s throw from rock bottom.

Her heart broken and her dream deferred, Neale decides to work a soul-crushing nine-to-five job until the heat dies down. However, that’s not exactly what happens when she meets Anthony, a sizzling coworker with a perfect smile.

Convinced that she breaks everything she touches, Neale’s sworn off art and men. Yet her creative spirit still beckons, and she can’t get Anthony out of her head. She’s caught in that familiar space between daydreams and responsibilities, desperate to find a new way forward. With her future hanging in the balance, Neale must decide if she is down and out…or ready to bounce back.

AVAILABLE ON

AMAZON | AUDIBLE

ALSO AVAILABLE ON KINDLE UNLIMITED

ADD ON GOODREADS

~~~

bounce back teaser1

~~~

EXCERPT

Neale stared up at the dingy two-story office building and wondered exactly where in her life she’d gone wrong. She knew there had to have been missteps, since she was in Northgate wearing something so drab only Dylan would find it fun and interviewing for a job at a company that licensed music for the kind of greeting cards that made people wish they’d never gotten a birthday card at all.

Walking toward the building, Neale reached a hand into the pocket of the gray, wide-legged trousers she had borrowed from Dylan and touched the list of interview tactics her sister had attempted to drill into her head over the last few days. After Neale had made the double mistake of not making eye contact with her sister as she’d shaken her hand and accepting a job offer on the spot without asking about the salary or benefits, Dylan had decided Neale needed a proper set of rules if she was to have any hope of landing this job. In classic Dylan fashion, she had even typed up the list and printed it out for Neale, just in case she forgot anything and needed to sneak into the bathroom for a refresher at some point.

“I am a self-directed worker who likes to interact with colleagues.” Neale mumbled Dylan’s catchphrase as she reached for the door, practicing her I’m-likable-but-no-nonsense smile in its grimy reflection. The inside of the building was as gray as the outside, with a hint of fluorescent lighting just to hammer home the cog-in-the-machine experience.

Neale shook her head, then reminded herself that no lobby looked appealing. Just because the building was sad didn’t mean that she wasn’t on a new path to greatness. Looking around to make sure the hallways were empty, she whispered as she walked, “I am detail oriented. I like the job done right.”

Pausing briefly at the building directory to find Happy Hearts’ suite number, 107, Neale continued her recitation: “I like a collaborative work environment.” She had messed that one up in practice.

Apparently, I like crystals on my desk was not what businesses wanted to hear in response to What kind of work environment do you like? Passing suite 105, Neale looked down at the drab green industrial carpet. “I do wish I could bring in crystals, though.”

“Well, Susan keeps plants at her desk, so I don’t see why you couldn’t bring a crystal,” said a voice from behind Neale, almost making her jump out of her borrowed, pointy-toed heels. Clutching her chest, she spun around and found herself face to face with a demigod dressed in a pair of perfectly creased khakis and an equally well-starched pastel-purple button-up. Looking up at the man’s face, Neale experienced several colliding thoughts. The first was that she knew he was a demigod because only a demigod would not have wrinkles in his clothes after 11:00 a.m. The second was that he had absolutely flawless rich-brown skin and the kind of smile that could power New York City at midnight.

Dark eyes sparkled with humor as the man looked at her. Catching sight of the surprise on her face, he frowned. “I’m sorry—it wasn’t my intention to scare you. Are you Neale?”

For a moment Neale remained silent, wondering if the man was a mind reader or if this was part of his demigod power. How else could he know her name? She also wondered if he even had pores.

“I’m Anthony. I work at Happy Hearts. Rich mentioned that he had an interview today,” the man said, interrupting her thoughts and nodding encouragingly at her. Then he paused, placing a hand over his broad chest, and smiled again before adding, “Unless you aren’t Neale. In which case, Calhoun Orthodontia is across the lobby in suite 108.”

“Sorry, you surprised me,” Neale said, finally finding her words. So much for the shoulders-back first impression Dylan had planned for her. “I’m Neale Delacroix.”

“Nice to meet you, Neale. I was just headed back from the mail room when I spotted you,” Anthony said, holding out his hand.

“Nice to meet you, Anthony,” Neale said, trying very hard not to focus on the feel of his hands. Job interviews were not a dating service; it said so on Dylan’s list. She couldn’t fix the thing about the crystals, but she could get the rest of her interview right. Demigod or not, she still needed a job.

~~~

bounce back teaser2

~~~

ABOUT ADDIE WOOLRIDGEAddie Woolridge

Born and raised outside Seattle, Washington, Addie Woolridge is a classically trained opera singer with a degree in music from the University of Southern California. She also holds a master’s degree in public administration from Indiana University. Her well-developed characters are a result of her love for diverse people, cultures, and experiences.

Woolridge currently lives in Northern California. When she isn’t writing or singing, she can be found baking, training for her sixth race in the Seven Continents Marathon Challenge, or taking advantage of the region’s signature beverage: wine.

CONNECT WITH ADDIE WOOLRIDGE

AUTHOR SITE | FACEBOOKTWITTER | INSTAGRAM | GOODREADS BOOKBUB AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE

~~~

The Honey Magnolia Company Logo

~~~

#PromoTour “Christmas in Rose Bend” by Naima Simone

CIRB cover

~~~

CHRISTMAS IN ROSE BEND

BY NAIMA SIMONE

“Simone balances crackling, electric love scenes with exquisitely rendered characters.” —Entertainment Weekly

The holidays have never been her thing. But Christmas in Rose Bend has more than one surprise in store…

Grieving ER nurse Nessa Hunt is on a road trip with her sullen teen half sister, Ivy, and still reeling from her mother’s deathbed confession: Nessa’s dad wasn’t really her dad. Seeking answers, they arrive in Rose Bend to find a small town teeming with the kind of Christmas cheer Nessa usually avoids. But then she meets the innkeeper’s ruggedly sexy son, Wolfgang Dennison.

Wolf’s big, boisterous family is like a picture-perfect holiday card. Nessa has too much weighing on her to feel like she fits—even though the heat between her and Wolf is undeniable. And the merriment bringing an overdue smile to Ivy’s face is almost enough to make Nessa believe in the Christmas spirit. But with all her parental baggage, including lingering questions about her birth father, is there room in Nessa’s life for happy holidays and happily-ever-after?

Rose Bend banner

AVAILABLE ON

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | KOBO | APPLE | GOOGLE | AUDIBLE

~~~

Christmas in Rose Bend teaser 1

~~~

ABOUT NAIMA SIMONE

NaimaPublished since 2009, USA Today Bestselling author Naima Simone loves writing sizzling romances with heart, a touch of humor and snark. Her books have been featured in The Washington Post and Entertainment Weekly, and described as balancing “crackling, electric love scenes with exquisitely rendered characters caught in emotional turmoil.”

She is wife to Superman, or his non-Kryptonian, less bullet proof equivalent, and mother to the most awesome kids ever. They all live in perfect, sometimes domestically-challenged bliss in the southern United States.

CONNECT WITH NAIMA SIMONE

AUTHOR SITE | FACEBOOKTWITTER | INSTAGRAM | GOODREADS | BOOKBUB | AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE

~~~

The Honey Magnolia Company Logo

~~~

#PromoTour “Secrets of a One Night Stand” by Naima Simone

SecretsOfAONS_Teaser-2

~~~

SECRETS OF A ONE NIGHT STAND

BY NAIMA SIMONE

She said yes to one night with a stranger… Now she’s pregnant and that stranger is her boss! Only in this Billionaires of Boston romance from USA TODAY bestselling author Naima Simone.

She told herself it was one night. Nothing more.

But her heart knew the truth…

Finding out her previous one-night fling is her new boss is the shock of Mycah Hill’s lifetime. She can’t say no to being VP for software CEO Achilles Farrell—she’s finally made her career dream come true. But knowing he’s so close… It’s only a matter of time before she’s back in his arms. It can’t end well. Achilles’s tortured family history means he’s not up for sticking around long-term. But Mycah’s surprise pregnancy is about to change everything…

AVAILABLE ON

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | APPLE | KOBO | GOOGLE | HARLEQUIN

ADD ON GOODREADS

ADD TO WISHLIST ON BOOKBUB

~~~

secrets cover

~~~

ABOUT NAIMA SIMONE

Published since 2009, USA Today Bestselling author Naima Simone loves writing sizzling romances with heart, a touch of humor and snark. Her books have been featured in The Washington Post and Entertainment Weekly, and described as balancing “crackling, electric love scenes with exquisitely rendered characters caught in emotional turmoil.”

She is wife to Superman, or his non-Kryptonian, less bullet proof equivalent, and mother to the most awesome kids ever. They all live in perfect, sometimes domestically-challenged bliss in the southern United States.

CONNECT WITH NAIMA

AUTHOR SITE | FACEBOOKTWITTER | INSTAGRAM | GOODREADS | BOOKBUB | AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE

~~~

The Honey Magnolia Company Logo

~~~

 

#PromoTour ‘n’ #BookReview “Soul Deep: Perspectives on Race, Relationships, Social Justice, and Hope” by Various Authors

Soul Deep banner

~~~

Soul Deep Cover

~~~

Soul Deep— Perspectives on Race, Relationships, Social Justice, and Hope – offers a soul-baring excavation into the lives of eight African American women. Born, raised, and educated in the United States, the authors currently live in eight states and three countries. Despite differences in personality, lifestyle, skin color, hair texture, regional vernacular, and geographic location, they share a significant and life changing common bond—Their ethnicity.

At one or more points in each woman’s life, she found herself in toxic environments teeming with an undeniable message. This language was spoken in a manner they will never forget— The language of hate.

Authors involved:

S.M. Troye

Raven Banks

Angela Kay Austin

Kim Golden

Delizhia Jenkins

N.D. Jones

Lee Mariano

Tracey Wooden-Carlisle

These women—mothers, daughters, sisters, wives, musicians, artists, professors, educators, and entrepreneurs share a collective, intense desire to make a difference with their truth. Personal experiences that only they can share. Experiences that are often painful, vile, confusing, hurtful, and deeply rooted not only in the fabric of who they are, but in the ongoing, systematic practices of our society and repercussions of our past – the perpetuation of exploitation, greed, denial, and a criminal sense of misguided entitlement.

In this compilation of short essays and memoirs, these writers, including USA Today bestselling and award-winning authors, re-examine their hearts and minds under the microscope of racism. If you have ever felt marginalized or oppressed, their voices will enlighten and resonate with you.

AVAILABLE ON
AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | KOBO | APPLE

~~~

Review

5/5 Stars!

The further I read Soul Deep: Perspectives on Race, Relationships, Social Justice, and Hope, the more I found myself nodding in agreement, and at similar experiences. I was also angry at how my parents and grandparents were filled with joy, a sense of accomplishment, and dreams of a better future after having beaten Jim Crow laws and seeing the Civil Rights Act signed and seeing what we’ve regressed to in 2021.

From Academia to the workplace to relationships to even inside the family home, these memoirs speak not just to the struggle of Black America to exist and thrive, but to the sometimes solitary existence of the Black woman, who often only has other Black women to support her… until she doesn’t.

While thought-provoking and insightful, this is not a long or difficult read, and I not only recommend it, I also challenge others to read it. Take a short walk in someone else’s shoes. It will be a walk you never forget.

Enjoy!

~~~

 

#PromoTour “Divorcing Atlanta” by Timmothy B. McCann

tour banner

~~~

cover

DIVORCING ATLANTA

BY TIMMOTHY B. MCCANN

“(Until…) stands head and shoulders above the rest.” Eric Jerome Dickey, NY Times Bestselling Author

Pastor Lorenzo Richardson’s endeavors to fulfill the calling on his life—which is to change the world, one soul at a time, by starting in southwest Atlanta.

So when he loses people in his circle unexpectedly, the ministry he dedicated his life to fails, and his wife is embroiled in an adulterous public affair with a notable public figure. Pastor Richardson is at the end of his rope and decides to change the world he lives in forever.

Divorcing Atlanta is a moving yet timely account that will resonate with readers who believe in the unyielding power of redemption, choose love and hope over hurt and fear, and fight for what truly matters in their lives.

AVAILABLE ON

AMAZON

KINDLE UNLIMITED

~~~

EXCERPT

Chapter One

Lorenzo

After I preached the last sermon I’d ever deliver, I sat in my neon green, Honda Accord, with my dad’s Bible in one hand and a Glock 17 in the other, contemplating how to get away with a robbery. Soon, this gun will make me money, send me to prison or kill me. My once perfect life, has come down to this.

When the sun began its tiptoe across the horizon, there was nothing that triggered such a thought. When you realize that you’ve given your all—yet if you should die before you wake, no one would care; it’s a dark and solemn place to dwell. That’s where I find myself tonight. And after I reconciled the potential jail time due to what I’ve already done, at this point, it doesn’t matter.

I delivered the shortest sermon I’d ever preached. I’m sure the sixteen people in the storefront church appreciated it. Seventeen, if you counted the pregnant white girl twice. It’s hard to minister on fumes. When you’re worried about the here and now, it’s damn near impossible to expound about the hereafter. I’m full in spirit, but in every single other way, I’m empty.

What does abject hunger feel like?

When you’ve gone a week without a decent meal. When starvation trickles up your spine. When it plays tricks on your mind, you hallucinate. Bones appear in your face, in places you’ve never seen before. Instinct compels you to lick your lips for comfort from time-to-time, and before your tongue can settle in your mouth, your lips are dry and need to be re-licked. Then the cramps kick in. That’s abject hunger.

You try to go to sleep. Because if you can just go to sleep, maybe you can find rest. You can find peace. You can awaken and things will be different. But you can’t.

After the church service, I did something my dad would’ve called a moral turpitude. I bought a four pack of wine coolers. I did so to escape—if only for the moment. All I know is this: When you’ve worked this hard to build a church, to be recognized for your endeavors nationally, it’s not supposed to end this way. I wasn’t supposed to be destitute at this point in my life. Wasn’t supposed to lose my congregation the way I lost them—and I wasn’t supposed to be contemplating the unthinkable in this hour.

The wind acts as an accelerant, which causes the clouds to roll. The taste of the earth floats on the air, and before I know it, soft sprinkles dot my skin. There’s a zing that teases my nostrils in the darkness of night, in a city bustling with activity—far from ready to fall asleep. An Über crammed with co-eds stops. They spill out.  They’re laughing, half lit; enjoying the first vestiges of a new day.

From a window on the fifth floor, a man screeches profanity at the top of his lungs to a group of young men sitting in their car blasting music.

“Turn that shit down! People gotta go to work.”

He’s ignored, and even if they heard him, they knew he’d never come down. People never come down in neighborhoods like this. They scream, pout, and go back to bed.

If one painted a picture and dubbed it, “Monday Night in Atlanta,” this is what would be captured in the frame. From my viewpoint I see the best and worst of Black America. Morehouse men talking to dope boys. Pinstriped professionals stepping over vomit. Everything one could both love and loathe is confined within three city blocks of a city that will let you call her ugly because she’s far too confident to care. If you closed your eyes in this part of town, you would feel so close to heaven you could hear the key of David being played, so close to hell you’d smell souls frying.

This is where I find myself tonight.

On one side of MLK, there’s a mural of Trayvon, George, Breonna and Ahmaud. The artist has added Rayshard’s smiling face, along with three additional blank spaces and the caption, “U Next?” beneath them. On the other side, twinkles of moonlight shine on crushed takeout cups, Colt 45 cans, and discarded Swisher Sweets wrappers. There’s a homeless man or woman sleeping at the bus stop, and the scent of vomit swings haltingly low to the ground.

I decide if I am going to do this—I need to game it out. In the age of Corona everyone’s face is half-covered, so there’s no need for a ski mask. Check.

I have a Walmart bag for whatever is in the register or stashed behind the counter. Check.

Once I’m out the door, I’ll jump in the car. Then it occurs to me. My car is disabled as well. Plan B—dip into the night and deal with it later. Check.

I’m told that in neighborhoods like this, for insurance purposes, they can’t chase you. If you have a gun and get out the door, they have to let you run.

God, I pray that’s true.

I massage the back of my neck, bite the inside of my lip, reach between the center console of the car, and retrieve a keepsake from my youth—a Kingsman chess piece from my first national chess tournament. I was ranked in the top two hundred players under thirteen. I hold it to reconnect. It takes me back to the south side. But on nights like tonight, I need it for peace. There’s something about the ridges of the crown and the smooth black finish of the base that centers me and forces me to think strategically. It binds the intellectual, spiritual, and emotional man within. Never have I needed this more.

My throat is bone dry in spite of my beverage of choice. I glance at my watch, put the Bible in the back seat, and cover it with my hand.

“Father forgive me,” I murmur, “for what I’m about to do.”

I look across the street. My heartbeat settles. My breathing returns to normal. The king has done its job. I return the chessman to the console. Through clenched teeth I murmur, “It’s time.”

Across the street is the world-famous Busy Bee Café. Next to it, there’s a liquor store, followed by a pawn shop, liquor store, nail salon, comedy club, liquor store and strip club. All except for the Busy Bee are open for business. I know if I pull a gun out in a pawn shop, booty club, or liquor store, light will shine through me before I hit the ground. That leaves two options: rob the comedy club or rob a nail salon.

I exit the car. I hold the half empty wine cooler in the same sweaty and unstable hand I hold the Glock. To balance myself, I lean against my wet-from-the-rain Accord for support. It’s slippery, but it allows me to gain my composure and stop my spinning world. I’m a tad nauseous. Since I haven’t eaten, I dry heave. My body isn’t used to alcohol, even under normal conditions. Nevertheless, I wipe the creases of my mouth and stick the gun in the pit of my back under my belt as if I were on a cop show. Maybe it’s my situation. Maybe it’s the alcohol, but I don’t have a clue as to where I’m going, even if I can get my feet on one accord.

I stagger across the street and see this athletic-looking woman, no more than thirty years old. I blink a couple of times to refocus. She has a high sense of style, making her stand out in the neighborhood this time of night. As she speaks, she moves her hands rapidly and snaps her fingertips from time to time to emphasize a point. Her shoulder-length hair is in what the kids call dookie braids, and she’s dressed in a white pantsuit with a white double-breasted vest and a leopard-patterned ascot and face mask.

The woman turns the street into a runway in Milan as she moves like a model in white stilettos. I watch her walk up to a black Audi, pull down the mask, and if my eyes aren’t deceiving me, they make an exchange. Newsflash: All drugstores haven’t been closed by the virus. She runs to the safety of her pearl white Escalade, forearm over her head to avoid getting too wet. Even though the vehicle is common in this part of Atlanta—there’s something eerily familiar about it as she gets behind the wheel and swiftly closes the door.

The comedy club, Laff-a-LotZ, is free. There’s a line to enter with a group, all wearing red Trap Music museum t-shirts and talking loudly about their visit to “The A.T.L..” If I rob the comedy club, I’ll keep it short and to the point. I’ll just tell him or her, “You know what time it is!” Then I’ll place the gun on the bar. Miss Glock can finish the conversation.

I join the line to enter. For as far as I can see down the street, trees line the road on both sides. For the most part, they’ve grown strong and healthy in the middle of this concrete jungle. I lean against one in front of the club to take shelter from the drizzling rain.

Once inside the small rectangular club, I notice the deep purple–colored walls are checkerboard with mirrors. People are talking loudly, most mouths covered with masks, trying to be heard over the thumping sound of the Mississippi Slide blasting from the speakers, which makes the walls throb. The dance floor is filled with the vibrant energy of line dancers moving as one as if they have practiced the synchronized moves before the club opened. A few people, for some reason, wear their protective masks under their nose, which makes no sense to me. I reach into my pocket and put on my KN-95 to the sound of bottles clicking and laughter all about, just before the comedian comes to the small octagonal stage off the dance floor.

It’s been months since I’ve been around this many people. Tonight, folks laugh a little louder and dance a little harder since it’s the first week A.T.L’ians have been allowed to mingle after the citywide mandatory, night club restrictions. On top of that it seems folks are tired of the daily Trump foolishness, fake evangelicals calling sins wins, Sou-sou money clubs, police killing Black men, gaining weight, R. Kelly, COVID killing everyone, gaining weight, Karen’s going wild, Kevin’s protecting Karen’s, home schooling, missing family, sweat pants, seeing too much of family, Zoom calls, looking for toilet paper, gaining even more weight and then going to sleep; and like Ground Hog Day II, having it happen the very next day.

I’m cold and damp from the rain, so I embrace myself, moving my hands up and down my biceps for warmth. I scope out the joint. That’s what they do on TV. If I make this lick and get to the door, I’ll be able to survive until I can sell another house. This has to work out.

In the murky, dimly lit back of the room, in front of a faded poster of Killer Mike, a woman is selling neon red, battery-powered roses. She moves from person to person and is rejected repeatedly. I watch her unmasked face mouth a few words, receive the rejection, and move doggedly to the next person, unfazed.

The bartender puts a stack of bills as thick as a woman’s fist in a bag. He has my attention. He tucks it in a spot behind the bar. That’s the stash house. Yeah, I used to watch The Wire.

When I move, I notice my reflection in the mirror and it’s jarring. One thing I miss about having a home is brushing my teeth in the morning. Odd, right? It’s not only about hygiene. I miss seeing my face. When your car has become your residence, there are times you forget how you look. Now my face is gaunt, and my clothes don’t fit. My eye is a puffy, but not as bad as I thought it would look. Could have been a lot worse.

When we started the church, which my ex named Compassion Central, my light brown skin—the residue of my deceased Italian father—was smooth. Now it resembles a catcher’s mitt, and my curly COVID fro is salt and pepper, in the spots where I’m not going bald. The soaking wet brown tweed, six-hundred-dollar Hugo Boss sport coat I’m wearing, brings to mind something homeless people would roll up to use as a pillow.

No wonder Bishop said he was praying for me after giving me a five dollar, “love token,” from the offering.

“Screw forty-two, I look fifty-two,” I whisper to myself with a wistful smile. My hazel eyes, which at one time would evoke questions from strangers, “Are they real?” are empty, sullen, and emit darkness. People used to ask me if I had work done on my teeth. I always replied, “I’m blessed.” Now the blessings are dingy and yellow, and when I scratch my beard, flakes of dandruff eject like an eight-track. If a person in this club knew me from when the church was open, they’d walk past without saying a word. That wouldn’t be the worst thing that could happen tonight.

I find a stool at the bar, closer to my target—the stash house. A guy one seat over motions to the bartender with two fingers and a jerk of his head upward just like in the movies. Within a few minutes, the bartender, brings out two shimmering drinks. The woman selling neon roses is drawing closer. I didn’t notice her make a sale, but she’s persistent.

The guy who ordered the drinks wears a red doo rag under a spearmint green derby and has a crooked smile that exposes teeth on only one side of his mouth. From time to time, he whispers into the ear of the woman perched between his legs then leans back to peep her expression. She appears to admire every word he’s speaking.

The woman with the roses comes up to him. I can hear her pitch. “Excuse me, kind sir. Rose for the lady?”

He flicks her away with the back of his tattooed hand. And then the woman positioned between his legs removes her mask to sip the drink when he suddenly shouts, “What the fuck!” He pushes her away in disgust as if he has seen her unmasked face for the first time.

“What?” she asks. The bartender drops another thick, rubber-banded stack of bills in the burgundy bank bag. He’s getting sloppy.

The patrons banter back and forth, and my mind is on one thing. Like a heavy-handed timpani player, my heart pounds in my chest as I bounce my fist against my knee. The fact that I’m here, in this situation and facing such a dilemma is abhorrent. Can’t dwell on that now. I’m down to my last—and I’ll do what I have to do.

Slowly I stand.

The bartender walks behind the shelf of drinks and into a storage room behind him. I played basketball in high school. Even at my height I could easily jump across the bar, grab the bag, and run out. There’s no way they’d fire a gun in a club this crowded. No flipping way.

I grasp the edge of the bar and steady myself. Then, the voice poses the question.

“Just because you don’t understand, this is what we’re going to do?”

I look back toward the door. The one bouncer is on the other side of the room and although crowded there’s, there is a path to get out of here.

I bend my knees.

~~~

ABOUT TIMMOTHY B. MCCANN

Timmothy McCannTimmothy B. McCann was born to tell stories. What began as penning love letters for a fee, grew into his national bestselling debut entitled, Until. Since then, he has amassed an insatiable and dedicated worldwide readership.

The former collegiate football player, educator, and owner of a financial planning firm is now a commercial real estate broker. In 2018, he founded First Day Christian Center. A ministry dedicated to helping those in need in Atlanta.

In his downtime, Timmothy is a self-proclaimed political junkie, golfer, movie buff and community activist who also loves spending time with the two most adorable grandchildren in the world.

~~~

HonMag Badge

~~~

#PromoTour “Divorcing Atlanta” by Timmothy B. McCann

tour banner

~~~

cover

DIVORCING ATLANTA

BY TIMMOTHY B. MCCANN

“(Until…) stands head and shoulders above the rest.” Eric Jerome Dickey, NY Times Bestselling Author

Pastor Lorenzo Richardson’s endeavors to fulfill the calling on his life—which is to change the world, one soul at a time, by starting in southwest Atlanta.

So when he loses people in his circle unexpectedly, the ministry he dedicated his life to fails, and his wife is embroiled in an adulterous public affair with a notable public figure. Pastor Richardson is at the end of his rope and decides to change the world he lives in forever.

Divorcing Atlanta is a moving yet timely account that will resonate with readers who believe in the unyielding power of redemption, choose love and hope over hurt and fear, and fight for what truly matters in their lives.

AVAILABLE ON

AMAZON

KINDLE UNLIMITED

~~~

ABOUT TIMMOTHY B. MCCANN

Timmothy McCannTimmothy B. McCann was born to tell stories. What began as penning love letters for a fee, grew into his national bestselling debut entitled, Until. Since then, he has amassed an insatiable and dedicated worldwide readership.

The former collegiate football player, educator, and owner of a financial planning firm is now a commercial real estate broker. In 2018, he founded First Day Christian Center. A ministry dedicated to helping those in need in Atlanta.

In his downtime, Timmothy is a self-proclaimed political junkie, golfer, movie buff and community activist who also loves spending time with the two most adorable grandchildren in the world.

~~~

HonMag Badge

~~~

#PromoTour “Consequences of Passion (Locketts of Tuxedo Park, Book 1)” by Yahrah St. John

tour banner

~~~

cover

CONSEQUENCES OF PASSION

by Yahrah St. JOHN

It’s release day for Consequences of Passion the first book in Yahrah St. John’s brand-new Lockett’s of Tuxedo Park series!

Meet Roman Lockett.

🏈 Roman is the heir to the throne of Atlanta Cougars football dynasty. Second in command behind his father. (Warning: Don’t anyone dare mention that in spite of his efforts to please the man Roman always seems to come up short. That my friend is a big no-no in his playbook.)

🏈 Roman dates frequently, but his standards are a teeny bit high (okay, extreme) and finding a good woman is not easy… until he encounters Shantel.

Meet Shantel Wilson.

🏈 She’s Roman’s brother’s best friend. (Need I say more?)

🏈 At a bachelor auction, Shantel ends up bidding on more than she bargained for… Well hello Mr. Roman Lockett!

🏈 One steamy night of passion later and a farewell note the morning after should be the end of this tale, but instead it leads to unexpected (and oh so delicious) consequences.

Want to find out how their love story ends? Pick up your copy today from your favorite retailer.

About Consequences of Passion

She promised herself just one night of passion with her best friend’s brother, but what happens next? Find out in this explosive launch to the Locketts of Tuxedo Park series from Yahrah St. John!

When a winning bachelor bid leads to unexpected consequences…

Psychologist Shantel Wilson surprises herself by attending a bachelor auction as a favor to her friend—and bidding on his older brother! The outcome of her steamy night with Roman Lockett, heir apparent to an Atlanta football dynasty? She’s expecting. Now Roman wants to claim her—and his child—yet Shantel needs more than a marriage of convenience from this man who put passion in her playbook…

From Harlequin Desire: Luxury, scandal, desire—welcome to the lives of the American elite.

Love triumphs in this uplifting romance, part of the new Locketts of Tuxedo Park series.

AVAILABLE ON

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | APPLE | KOBO | GOOGLE | HARLEQUIN

ADD ON GOODREADS

~~~

Enter to Win

Giveaway banner

One of three signed copies of Consequences of Passion!

Click Here

~~~

Yahrah St. JohnABOUT YAHRAH ST. JOHN

Yahrah St. John became a writer at the age of twelve when she wrote her first novella after secretly reading a Harlequin romance. Throughout her teens, she penned a total of twenty novellas. Her love of the craft continued into adulthood. She’s the proud author of thirty-nine books with Arabesque, Kimani Romance and Harlequin Desire as well as her own indie works.

When she’s not at home crafting one of her spicy romances with compelling heroes and feisty heroines with a dash of family drama, she is gourmet cooking or traveling the globe seeking out her next adventure. For more info: www.yahrahstjohn.com or find her on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Bookbub or Goodreads.

CONNECT WITH Yahrah St. JOHN

AUTHOR SITE | FACEBOOKTWITTER | INSTAGRAMNEWSLETTER | PINTEREST | YOUTUBE | BOOKBUB | AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE

~~~

The Honey Magnolia Company Logo

~~~

#PromoTour “Confessions in B-Flat” by Donna Hill

tour banner

CIBF cover

CONFESSIONS IN B-FLAT

BY DONNA HILL

Essence bestselling author Donna Hill brings us an emotional love story set against the powerful backdrop of the civil rights movement that gripped a nation‹a story as timely as it is timeless…

The year is 1963. In Harlem, the epicenter of Black culture, the fight for equality has never been stronger. The time is now. Enough is enough. Yet even within its ranks, a different kind of battle rages. Love thy neighbor? Or rise up against your oppressors?

Jason Tanner has just arrived in New York to help spread the message of his mentor, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., of passive resistance, while beat poet Anita Hopkins believes the teachings of Malcolm X with all her heart: that the way to true freedom is “by any means necessary.” When Jason sees Anita perform her poetry at the iconic B-Flat lounge, he’s transfixed. And Anita has never met anyone who can match her wit for wit like this…

One movement, two warring ideologies—can love be enough to unite them?

Confessions in B-Flat is a celebration of the hard-won victories of those who came before us, and a stark reminder of just how far we still have to go.

AVAILABLE ON

ENTANGLED PUBLISHING | AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | APPLE | KOBO


cibfteaser1

EXCERPT

When Jason returned with the supplies, he and Michael got to work. Jason ditched his shirt, tie, and jacket; filled a bucket with hot, sudsy water; and began washing the storefront windows until the sun bounced off them like a new penny on a hard mattress.

While he worked, he took the opportunity to watch the comings and goings on the street, sharing greetings with the array of folks who came and went. There were parents pushing baby carriages, delivery men, toddlers with grandparents, students on their way to Columbia University—not too far away—and a cluster of young men who hung on the corner smoking cigarettes and swapping stories about their sports heroes’ latest feats. He smiled. How many corners had he and Jeff hung out on, just shooting the breeze and enjoying life? He wiped the perspiration from his head with his forearm, gathered up his cleaning supplies, and was heading back inside when he glanced up and stopped short. His heart raced. She was coming across the street.

He’d only seen her once, but he’d know that halo of hair and that face anywhere.

As she drew closer, he watched as her expression changed from determination to shock. She tipped her head a bit to the side, squinted with a half smile on her face.

Anita stopped in front of him, adjusted her tote higher up on her shoulder, and stuck her hands in the back pockets of her capri pants. “Do-gooder! I’ll be damned.”

She was shorter than he’d thought she was on the bus, came somewhere under his chin, but she was still larger than life. Vibrant energy flowed from her.

“Fancy seeing you here,” he said and knew he sounded ridiculous.

“Not really. I live around here.” Her smile showcased the tiny dimple in her right cheek. “Fancy seeing you here, though.” She adjusted her weight to her right leg, jutting out a round hip.

Jason grinned and nodded sheepishly. “So do I. Well, not right here exactly, but close.”

She lifted her chin in the direction of the storefront. “What’s going on here?”

He cleared his throat, remembering her heated remarks on the bus. “Actually, I’m opening a local office for Dr. King.” Her brown eyes widened, raising her thick brows in the process. “Really?”

“Yep.”

“So what are y’all gonna be doing exactly?” She squinted at him.

“Training. Recruiting volunteers. Spreading information…”

“Hmm. Well, good luck with that.”

“Thank you, I think.”

“Look, do-gooder, I admire what you’re trying to do. But look around you.” She waved her hand. “These people need more than platitudes and marches. They want respect, dignity of work, to be treated like a human being and not by bowing their heads, turning cheeks, and accepting what ‘they’ decide they want to give us.”

“Dr. King wants the same thing,” Jason insisted. “But violence is not the way to get what we want.”

“Guess we gonna have to agree to disagree, do-gooder.” He tucked in a smile at the barb, which he’d gladly wear as a mantle. “It’s Jason, by the way. Jason Tanner.” He wiped his hand on his pants leg and extended it to her.

She pursed her lips, paused, then accepted the olive branch. “Anita Hopkins.”

“Nice to meet you—again, Anita. Looks like we keep meeting under strained circumstances.” That seemed to let some of the steam out of her. Her slender body visibly relaxed, even as a shadow of something he couldn’t define passed across her eyes.

She shifted her weight again. “How long you been in the city?”

“Couple of weeks.”

“How long you staying?”

“As long as it takes.” He watched her throat work.

“Guess you haven’t had a chance to see much of Harlem.”

He wasn’t sure if that was a question or a statement. “Uh, not really. Takes a bit of getting used to.”

She licked her bottom lip, then dug in her tote and pulled out a stack of papers. She peeled one off and handed it to him.

“Friday nights at B-Flat Lounge.” Her eyes picked up the light, turning them a brighter shade of brown. She shrugged slightly. “You might like it. Give you a real feel for Harlem.” She smiled.

He took the flyer. “Thanks.” He paused. “Will you be there?”

She shoved the papers back in her tote. “Guess you’ll have to stop by and find out. Take care, do-gooder.” She breezed by him and started off down the street.

Jason turned to watch her departure and wondered if she always swayed her hips like a metronome or if it was purely for his benefit.

She turned the corner and was gone.

He took a look at the flyer. B-Flat Lounge. Hmm. Maybe.


cibfteaser2

ABOUT DONNA HILL

My official writing career began in 1987 when my first short story was published. My first novel, Rooms of the Heart was published in 1990. Since then there have been a slew of books and short stories that I’ve had published, from romance to women’s fiction, chic-lit, erotica and mysteries. I enjoy them all. Three of my novels were adapted for television so that was exciting. I’ve had the honor of conceptualizing and editing several collections: After the Vows, Midnight Clear, Where There’s a Will, Indecent Exposure, and The Hot Spot. I currently teach at Medgar Evers College and live in Brooklyn, NY with my family.


HonMag Badge