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BLOG TOUR ~ Stolen Wish (The Blood Realm Series #5) by Jennifer Blackstream

  Title: Stolen Wish

Series: The Blood Realm Series #5

By: Jennifer Blackstream


Publication Date: August 7, 2017
Publisher: Skeleton Key Publishing
Genre: Paranormal Romance

 

#stolenwishtour

PRIDE MAKES HIM BOLD ENOUGH TO COVET HER

Ali is a notorious thief, skilled enough to steal whatever his heart desires—except what it desires most. Anara. His fellow criminal would never let him get so close if she suspected he knew who she truly was. But a man can only resist temptation for so long…

PREJUDICE CANNOT HIDE PASSION FOREVER

Princess Anara is a tiger shifter obsessed with redeeming her race. With fierce determination, she’s stealing back the sacred objects of her people, the loss of which cost them the ability to safely convert their mates. Nothing and no one will stand in her way—not even a relentless thief who sees more than he should, and says more than she’s ready to hear…

DUTY AND LOVE BOTH DEMAND SACRIFICE

A dark sorcerer inadvertently gives Ali the leverage he needs to demand Anara’s hand in marriage. He’ll get the wife he’s coveted for so many years, and she will get the chance to finally explore the passion that she’s denied herself for too long. But even with a djinn’s magic at their fingertips, happiness is no guarantee. That which is easily gained is just as easily lost. If they want a future together, they’ll have to fight for it…


 

Amazon US – http://amzn.to/2v7X4Z9

Amazon UK – https://goo.gl/L33Eyx

Amazon CA – https://goo.gl/kuWgGA


 

The Blood Realm Series #4

The Blood Realm Series #3

The Blood Realm Series #2

The Blood Rose Series #1


 

I’m not alone.

Anara slid into the shadow cast by a large pillar, stilling her breath as she scanned her surroundings. Visconti Malik’s cavernous home was empty on this level, none of the current occupants trusted to be in the showroom when their master was away. 

The cool tile chilled her back through her cloak as she held still, reaching inside herself for her other half. Her beast stirred, a tiger’s soft golden head rising, opening shining green eyes. Three high-arched doorways on either side of her gave a breathtaking view of the city around the hilltop, but she ignored it, focusing instead on the surrounding room. The massive pillars could be hiding anyone. 

Her nostrils flared, parsing out the myriad of scents that swirled in the wind. The ghost of the night’s dinner still hung in the air in a perfume of figs, pomegranates, goat meat, and barley. Underneath that slept the scent of the treasure the visconti loved so much, bragged of so often. And still below that was another scent. One that did not belong. 

Masculine. Sand. The sharp scent of clothing dye. And a familiar hint of foolhardy excitement.

A smile spread over her lips. She knew that scent. Knew the man it belonged to. Her stomach fluttered in excitement as she remained hidden behind the pillar, waiting for the soft footsteps to pass her hiding place. 

Ali was silent for a human, she would allow him that. But a weretiger’s senses were unrivaled, and she would have heard the slap of his bare feet on the tile even if he had been moving as cautiously as he should have been. She shook her head, stalking him as he approached the far wall where the treasures glittered on rows of pedestals. 

“Hello, beautiful,” he whispered.

Anara froze, her hand hovering over his shoulder. Irritation furrowed her brow, and she crossed her arms. “How did you hear me?” she demanded in a whisper.

Ali jumped, whirling around in midair and nearly dropping the gold rhyton he held in his hands. Blue eyes opened so wide they caught the moonlight, turning his irises into crystal pools of light. The silky black hair hanging to his shoulders framed those eyes, made them all the brighter for the shadows that bathed the sides of his face. Anara dug her fingernails into her palm, resisting the urge to touch a lock of that hair, see if it was as soft as it looked.

He exhaled a deep breath, muscled shoulders sagging under the thin material of his caftan. “Habibi, you scared a year off my life. Why would you do such a thing?”

Her eyes narrowed. “You were talking to the rhyton, weren’t you?” She drummed her fingers along her biceps and lifted her chin in pretended offense. “What a fool I was to think I was the beautiful one you were greeting.”

A grin spread over Ali’s mouth, and he rolled the treasure down his arm, carelessly flinging it to his other hand as he focused on her. The intricately carved head of a ram seemed to flash its disapproval as Ali raised the cup in a mock toast. “Had I known you were here, I would not have wasted those words on a meaningless trinket such as this. You are the true treasure here.”

As always, Anara found his smile infectious, and soon she was returning his grin even as she tsked at him. “If you’re wasting your time with baubles such as that, then you are ignorant of the visconti’s greatest wealth.”

Blue eyes glittered with renewed greed as he replaced the rhyton on its pedestal. “Oh?”

Anara cast a glance around to make certain they hadn’t disturbed the sleeping servants. The large room was open, security depending on the palace’s strategic placement atop a hill and the knowledge that anyone suspected of stealing from the visconti would suffer for a long time before he died. Malik was too proud of his treasures and his wealth to lock it away, and he clearly felt that the level of torture and violence he leveled on would-be thieves was more than enough to make up for his audacity. Anara said a prayer of gratitude for his foolishness as she redirected her attention to the locked door that led to the interior of the home. 

She took a careful step toward the door, her senses alert for any sound that might mean they were in danger of getting caught. The huge space remained empty, not a hint of sound bouncing off the gold and cerulean tiles that lined the floors, walls, and ceilings. With a wink at Ali, she resumed her original quest. 

He followed her lead, trailing without a trace of the pride that so often hobbled other men. It was perhaps his greatest quality, his ability to put practicality above pride. A very rare quality.

“And what precious secrets is Malik hiding, then?” Ali whispered.

“If you would do proper research instead of just grabbing whatever shiny object catches your fancy, then you would know. Now be silent.”

The door’s lock gave way under the careful application of the slender tools Anara had crafted herself. Together, they snuck inside and made their way down the short hallway, going left when it came to a T. 

The scent of rich ink, expensive thread, and the unmistakable mustiness of a space with no windows guided Anara until she came to the room she’d been looking for. Polished tile cover the walls and ceiling as in the other rooms, but this alcove boasted comfortable pillows and cushions for lounging, and expensive silks and tapestries broke up the endless shining tiles. A room meant for entertaining. For impressing. 

Anara kept her eyes on the tapestry at the far end, its vibrant threads depicting a majestic Roc holding one of its precious eggs, its wings turned to burning red embers by the glorious, intricate stitching of a setting sun. She stepped around the various seating arrangements, her heart beating faster as she approached her goal. 

Her fingers had just brushed the wall-hanging when Ali’s body heat washed over her back. Anara blinked and paused, her nerves tingling with the pleasant awareness of Ali’s proximity. It wasn’t the first time he’d invaded her space, and once again she reflected that if he knew that the veil she wore was not just a means of hiding her identity during her nocturnal activities, but a means to prevent anyone from looking on the face of the sultan’s daughter—he would never dare to stand so close to her. No man did. 

But he didn’t know. And he must never know.

“Have you forgotten what you’re looking for?” he murmured.

The words were another curl of heat into the air, and he shifted closer. Anara realized she was holding her breath, concentrating on the gentle press of his chest against her back. The tingling in her nerves turned to a crackle, and she quickly snuffed it out.

“I have not forgotten. I am waiting for you to realize your complete disrespect for my personal space.” She kept her voice light, gently recriminating. 

An inhale right next to her ear startled her, and she jerked her head to the side, prevented from seeing him by the hood of her cloak.

“You smell good.”

She pressed her lips together and turned enough to face him, narrowing her eyes at the wicked smirk on his face.

“You smell of wine. Perhaps you could refrain from breathing on me so at least one of us can keep a clear head?”

His blue eyes darkened and he stepped forward, crowding her and prompting her to tilt her face up to keep meeting his eyes or else step back in retreat. Her tiger raised its head, eyeing the man before her with burgeoning interest. Ali leaned closer, filling her senses with his unique scent. Her pulse throbbed as he stopped with his mouth an inch from her ear.

 

“Am I making it difficult for you to keep a clear head? Perhaps you’ll join me for a drink so I can…apologize?”

 
 

 

Jennifer Blackstream is a USA Today bestselling author of fantasy/paranormal romance. Urban Fantasy will soon be joining her repertoire, and if she doesn’t get hold of the insidious roving gang of plot bunnies, there’s going to be steampunk sprinkled in there too…

For news, new releases, and a free copy of What Big Teeth You Have, sign up for Jennifer’s mailing list on her website at jenniferblackstream.com.

Jennifer has unfailing affection for the authors who have influenced her, including Laurell K. Hamilton, Jim Butcher, and the sorely missed Sir Terry Pratchett. Her books include humor, romance, and action, with enough darkness to keep things very interesting.

When Jennifer isn’t writing, she can be found re-watching Boondock Saints, Noises Off, or Gross Pointe Blank. With one of those classics in the background, she might also be searching Amazon for something she wants, but doesn’t need (Is there any such thing as a kitchen gadget that isn’t an absolute necessity? And don’t even get me started on office supplies…).

  
 


BLOG TOUR ~ Bear With Me (The Blood Realm Series #4) by Jennifer Blackstream

 

 Title: Bear With Me
Series: The Blood Realm Series #4

By: Jennifer Blackstream

 

Publication Date: April 4, 2017
Publisher: Skeleton Key Publishing
Genre: Paranormal Romance

Cover Designer: YOCLA Designs

 

 
#bearwithmetour

A PRINCE TRAPPED IN THE BODY OF A BEAR

Torben is a bear shifter struggling to pass a test laid on him by his power-hungry stepmother. Bound into his beast form during the day, able to be human only at night when the darkness hides him, he must find a wife. She can know him only as a bear and a bodiless voice in the night. For one year, she must let him keep his secrets, trust him as a wife should trust her husband. But what woman will climb into bed with a bear and trust it is a man waiting for her?

A BARD LOOKING FOR HER VOICE

After witnessing her mother’s murder left her blind, Leta had to put away her sword and her dreams of becoming a bard. Now she is resigned to a calm life where the best she can hope for is a good marriage that will take the burden of her care from her father’s shoulders. When her father claims the gods have sent a man to be not just her husband, but perhaps her savior, Leta has to take a leap of faith…and hope she falls in love.

Even a blind woman can see when something is worth fighting for…


The Blood Realm Series #3

The Blood Realm Series #2 
Amazon


The Blood Rose Series #1


It was on the tip of Leta’s tongue to argue, to tell her father what he could do with his suitor who thought he could fix the poor little blind girl. But she bit it back. This was what they’d hoped for, what they’d thought would be impossible. This was no time for her battered pride to make a stand. 
 
“I’ll meet with him.” She took a deep breath and straightened her spine. “Perhaps you could invite him to dinner this week?”
 
Her father cleared his throat. “He’s here. Now.”
 
She slumped, hands going limp in her lap. “What? What do you mean he’s here now?”
 
“He’s here…for you.”
 
“He’s…” Her voice was a pathetic squeak, and now it was her turn to clear her throat. “Father…are you telling me you’ve already given him my hand?”
 
“I signed the marriage contract five minutes ago.”
 
His voice was a whisper, so quiet she might not have heard it two months ago, before she’d lost her vision, when her other senses had not been quite so keen. She swayed and put a hand on the floor to steady herself. She’d agreed to an arranged marriage, had given him her blessing to find her a suitor. But…
 
“I don’t understand. Why so quickly?”
 
“Leta, it’s been two months. I’d hoped you would come through this on your own. I prayed you would come through this on your own. But you haven’t. I don’t know how to help you. I…” His voice broke and he groped for her hands, took them in his trembling fingers. “Leta, you need someone who will make you feel safe, who might be able to bring you through—”
 
“And what if there is no through this? What if this is who I am now, what I am now?” Her muscles tingled with the urge to stand, to stalk away from him, storm off in a healthy fit of justified indignation. “You couldn’t let me have any dignity? Couldn’t let me go into this arranged marriage like any other woman? You had to send me off to be fixed, as though I were a table with a wobbly leg?”
 
Experience kept her kneeling on the floor. If she tried to fly off in a rage, she would succeed only in humiliating herself. High emotions flustered her, made it harder to remember where all the furniture was, how far the wall was. A broken nose or bruised shins wouldn’t help anyone, and it certainly wouldn’t do her wounded pride any good. And so she sat there, a prisoner. Locked in a dark world.
 
“Well then,” she said, her voice tight, “I suppose I’d better go meet the man who will be my nursemaid from now on.”
 
“Leta—” 
 
“Are you going to escort me out, or would you like me to feel my way there, give him a good idea of what he’s getting himself into?”
 
“Leta, please—”
 
“Very well.” She was being childish now, but she didn’t care. She surged to her feet and stuck her arms out in front of her, swinging them side to side as she took small steps toward where she thought the doorway was. Her nerves screamed with heightened awareness, bracing to be struck by something, as if the room were suddenly full of stalactites. Ignoring her father’s protests, she shuffled forward, feeling in front of her with the toes of each foot and the tips of her fingers. 
 
Her father tried to take her arm when she reached the door, but she shrugged him off. Composing herself as best she could, she groped along the wall of the hallway, inching closer and closer to the main room of the house. She was grateful there were no stairs, and she was able to make it to the sitting room attached to the foyer without falling or striking anything. 
 
It was hard to describe how she knew someone was in the room, even though she couldn’t see. Something about the hairs on the back of her neck, a tingle down her spine that screamed at her she was being watched. She always knew when someone else was in the room with her, but this time there was something more. A thrill that brushed her fight-or-flight reflex, filled her with a strange, warbling anxiety. Someone was watching her. Someone…big.
 
Don’t be ridiculous. You can’t possibly feel size, her mind chastised her. Still, her senses stubbornly refused to admit any doubt. Whoever was watching her had a weight to his presence, and she could feel it. She blinked and moved her eyes around, trying to see something, anything, a slice of shadow or light that would give her a clue. But the darkness remained as thick as it always was, silent and impenetrable. 
 
A strange scent wafted past her nose. Musk and the crisp scent of the wind off the mountains to the north. The faintest hint of sea air. The floor creaked as someone shifted their weight. Her heart skipped a beat and her instincts crowed in vindication. There was definite weight to that sound. 
 
If that was her husband, he was not a small man. 
 
“Are you really going to let the blind woman stand here wondering if she’s alone in the room?”
 
“You seem very aware that you are not alone.”
 
The voice was masculine, and so deep that it vibrated things low in her body, quickened the pulse in her neck. She angled her ear toward that voice, forming a mental picture of the room and her visitor’s location based on where his voice had come from. It was lower than she’d expected, as though he were sitting down.
 
“Leta, this is Torben Biorna. Torben, this is my daughter Leta.”
 
“I understand I’m your wife now.”
 
She threw the words down like a gauntlet, using her tone to make it clear what she thought of such things being settled without her presence, let alone input. The floor creaked again, and somewhere underneath that was a different sound that she wasn’t familiar with. Something hard sliding against the wood. It was brief, too brief for her to consider it closely. She frowned and tilted her head a little more, waiting to hear if it would happen again.
 
“Yes, you are my wife.”
 
Again his voice did strange and wonderful things to her body, teasing sensations from her with that hint of promise, that faint brush of heat. Warmth washed over her cheeks, and she was horrified to realize she was blushing.
 
If he noticed her embarrassing reaction, he kept it from his voice. “Things progressed quickly, and I don’t blame you for being displeased at your lack of participation. It is not how I would have liked to begin our relationship, but I hope you’ll give me a chance to make it up to you.”
 
She groped for her temper, needing it to bolster her defenses against that voice. “My father says you think you can fix me.” 
 
“Leta,” her father warned.
 
“No, it’s all right. I would be offended too, were I in her place.” 
 
Another creak of the floorboards, followed by that same sound. Leta leaned forward, and it stopped immediately.
 
“You do not need to be fixed, Leta. You are not broken.”
 
Her father had spoken those same words to her, more times than she could count. But they were different coming from this man. He spoke with a definite authority, an unwavering confidence that said he knew he was right. It touched something inside her, something frightened. A tiny knot of tension she hadn’t been aware of relaxed.
 
“Torben was a solider.” Her father’s voice was gentle now, encouraging. “He’s known a lot of men who had very strong reactions after witnessing horrible things. He’s helped them.”
 
“Your father told me what happened to your mother,” Torben said quietly. “I’m sorry for your loss.”
 
Echoes of her mother’s screams filled Leta’s ears. Her chest rose and fell more rapidly, her breaths sharper, painful. Ice water trickled through her veins, chasing away the warm feeling Torben had summoned with his words, his voice. The knot of tension returned, trailing a string of others until she stood hunched in on herself, falling into an all-too-familiar nightmare. 
 
“I don’t want to talk about it.” Her voice was weak, strangled by the memory peeking out at her like a monster from the mouth of a cave. She held her hands out, feeling around herself for orientation.
 
“Leta, here, come sit down.”
 
Her father took her arm, and she wilted with relief and let him lead her to a chair. Sitting calmed her, took away the awful feeling of disorientation that struck her when her emotions overwhelmed her spatial sense. She fought her way out of the panic, tried to reorient herself, remember where her husband was. 
 
“We don’t have to talk about it.” He spoke as if he’d sensed her discomfort, her need to know where he was. “Know only that I am here to listen if you change your mind.”
 
She bobbed her head, grateful for his willingness to let it go. “You’re going to stay with us for a while, then?”
 
Awkward silence billowed into the room like dense fog. 
 
“Leta…he’s your husband.” Her father shifted on his chair, his discomfort announced by every squeak of the wood. “You’re leaving with him.”

 

 

Jennifer Blackstream is a USA Today bestselling author of fantasy/paranormal romance. Urban Fantasy will soon be joining her repertoire, and if she doesn’t get hold of the insidious roving gang of plot bunnies, there’s going to be steampunk sprinkled in there too…

For news, new releases, and a free copy of What Big Teeth You Have, sign up for Jennifer’s mailing list on her website at jenniferblackstream.com.

Jennifer has unfailing affection for the authors who have influenced her, including Laurell K. Hamilton, Jim Butcher, and the sorely missed Sir Terry Pratchett. Her books include humor, romance, and action, with enough darkness to keep things very interesting.

When Jennifer isn’t writing, she can be found re-watching Boondock Saints, Noises Off, or Gross Pointe Blank. With one of those classics in the background, she might also be searching Amazon for something she wants, but doesn’t need (Is there any such thing as a kitchen gadget that isn’t an absolute necessity? And don’t even get me started on office supplies…).

 
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