Hi! Please welcome back Jaye Frances back to Salacious Reads. She'll be talking about her newest book The Cruise-All That Glitters...a great summer read. There will also be a giveaway.
Thank you, Sharonda, for having me back on Salacious Reads with my new romantic comedy, The Cruise-All That Glitters. I really appreciate the opportunity to visit with your readers, and give them a sneak peek.
Romance, love, desire, and passion. It’s what we hope for and dream about. And while we wait for fate and destiny to deliver, we can’t help but fantasize about the perfect combination of appearance, personality, and character that we’re certain awaits us around the next corner. The possibility of meeting a new lover—the love of a lifetime—often drives us to throw caution to the wind, eagerly handing over the key to our heart in the hope that a new acquaintance will turn out to be the one. But what happens when we discover that it’s all been a mirage—our dreams of a bright and magical future nothing more than an illusion?
In the following excerpt, the main character, Dean, learns that his fantasized world—the one constructed with enthusiastic imagination and presumptuous expectation—is about to be destroyed by a healthy dose of truth about love and lies.
**contains some mature language.
She wasn’t looking forward to seeing me tonight. If forced to tell the truth, she probably had no interest in me at all.
I felt stunned, disconnected. My mind raced back to this afternoon, when there had been no need to test each other’s readiness, and then earlier, to the day before, when I had held on to the sailboat brochure like it was a treasure map, finding hope and promise in the imagined trace-heat of her body.
It had come full cycle—ending before it could begin. I glared at her, shaking my head, not caring what she thought, remembering that underneath her silky blond hair dangled a set of six hundred dollar earrings—earrings that I would never see on my dresser, or stored in a jewelry box in our bedroom.
I had to know for sure. If nothing else, my eighteen hundred dollars would buy me the truth.
“Franco? Was that his name?”
I stepped toward her. “What the f**k is a Franco?”
She stiffened as she moved sideways, managing to keep a good foot of space between us. “Franco is NOT a f**k,” she said defensively.
Any doubt I might have had about her intentions was gone. There was no reason to hold back.
“Okay, look,” I began. “I know you have other plans, but you gotta understand, I put out a lot of money on you. That little bauble on your wrist wasn’t cheap. Don’t you think I deserve a little something special before you leave to meet your friends?”
She cocked her head slightly to the side and licked her perfectly parted lips. “Oh yes, honey, you deserve it all.” Her voice rang mock-sweet, dripping with pretentious seduction. She was trying to pacify me—shame me—into agreeing with her.
“Good,” I agreed. “So let’s peel that dress off and see what we have to work with.” Even though I was sure of what she’d done—the kind of person she really was—it still made me sick to say it, to treat her like a whore.
The impatience returned to her face. “You really thought I was going to sleep with you?”
I stared at her without answering, challenging her. I had to play it out, finish it here and now.
“I can’t imagine what gave you that idea,” she added.
“What about this afternoon?”
“What about it?” she fired back. “We had some fun. We spent some time together. That’s what people on cruises do. Does that mean I have to f**k you?”
She smiled, obviously pleased to be in control again.
I crossed my arms over my chest. “I think you should leave the bracelet. And the earrings.”
Her smile vanished as a look of disbelief swept over her face. “I . . . I don’t understand. You don’t want me to have them?” She turned her head, her lower lip extending to create the same pouting expression that had nearly taken me to my knees earlier in the day.
I nodded. “I think you should leave them here.”
She appeared confused, as if not understanding the language. For a moment, I expected her to bolt, to run for the door and disappear into the hall. But she looked up at me, and with her voice confident and sure, said, “Then if that’s the way you want it, fine. I’ll leave them. But I think you should know the truth.”
“There’s some kind of truth to this?”
“Okay, look,” she began. “I didn’t tell you before because, well, because I care about you.” Her smile widened, her stance falling open and seductive, but I also noticed she was slowly moving her wrist behind her back—trying to hide the bracelet. “To be honest, I didn’t want to disappoint you,” she added.
“What are you talking about?”
She hesitated, and then turned away slightly, as if suddenly unable to face me. “I had some tests done before the cruise, and they came back positive. I’m sure it’s nothing. The doctor said it should clear up in a couple of weeks. But I suppose I’m what you call contagious.”
“You mean like catching?”
Her face offered a mock-sainted expression evidently more practiced than sincere. “See? I knew you’d be disappointed. And so am I.” She half-stepped toward me. “Because I was really looking forward to spending time with you, you know, being together.”
I stared at her with reverent horror, amazed at how resilient she could be. She had hustled me for eighteen hundred bucks, and now she would say anything to hold on to it. She reminded me of a huge king snake that had attacked my grandfather years ago. He’d stepped on it accidentally, but when it wouldn’t stop biting, he’d had to repeatedly stomp on it to kill it.
She was going to take a lot of stomping.
Here’s a brief synopsis:
It’s love on the high seas for Dean, a thirty-something bachelor taking his first cruise, hoping for a shipboard romance. On the prowl for the elusive hard-body, he quickly becomes disillusioned, wondering if his expectation of a boatload of beautiful sea nymphs is something found only in travel brochures.
Until he meets Angel.
She is the girl of his dreams, brought to life as a bewitching goddess, ready to engage in every sensual delight. Quickly lured into submission by Angel’s seductive charms, Dean is ready to surrender his heart and soul to this provocative beauty.
Until he meets Marcie . . .
About Your Author
Jaye Frances is the author of the paranormal-occult romance novel The Kure, the first book in The Kure series, and The Possibilities of Amy, a coming-of-age story of high school romance. Her upcoming work, scheduled for a Summer 2012 release, is titled The Beach, a sci-fi fantasy about a man who is given the opportunity to receive his ultimate wish and lives to regret it. She is also a featured columnist for the NUSA SUN magazine. Born in the Midwest, Jaye readily admits that her life’s destination has been the result of an open mind and a curiosity about all things irreverent. When she’s not consumed by her writing, Jaye enjoys cooking, traveling to all places tropical and “beachy” and taking pictures—lots of pictures—many of which find their way to her website. Jaye lives on the central gulf coast of Florida, sharing her home with one husband, six computers, four cameras, and several hundred pairs of shoes. For more information, visit Jaye’s website at www.jayefrances.com, or Jaye’s Blog at http://blog.jayefrances.com
The Cruise – All That Glitters is available now
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