Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Dark Pleasures by Aja James

Paranormal, Fantasy Romance
Date Published: June 15, 2018

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Devlin Sinclair, the New England Dark Ones’ Hunter, is on a mission to track down the elusive and mysterious Medusa, perhaps the ultimate nemesis the Pure and Dark Ones have been battling in recent years.

But he can’t do it alone.

Grace Darling has isolated herself from the world since a very young age, after her parents’ death and because of her own social disability. Awkward and brilliant, a born sensualist, Grace agrees to a blind date that changes the course of Destiny.

She has the skills he needs.

Their chemistry is off the charts, but will she, can she give him the love he craves?


Excerpt Two

It was the barely-there touch on her shoulder that decided Grace.
She would stay for a meal with the impostor Azor Ahai and take him home with her afterwards.
If the rash of sparks that his glancing touch generated was any indication, sex with him would be nigh incinerating, and she was in a state of utmost arousal this night.
Grace sat down and waited for the stranger to likewise settle in the seat across from her.
Her arousal wasn’t due to him, though aesthetically speaking, he was a priceless work of art:
Golden-honey waves of hair streaked with sunlight, perfectly symmetrical and evenly spaced features, dark blonde brows arching elegantly over heavily lashed bright blue eyes, the type of blue that sapphires envied.
A blade of a nose that drew attention to sculpted cheek bones and the fundamentally masculine hollows beneath, a wide, full mouth that looked like it smiled a lot, bracketed by faint grooves that hinted at dimples.
There were adjectives that most people might use to describe such a face. Handsome was too bland. Beautiful did not do justice to his overwhelming maleness. Gorgeous suggested something showy, not quite authentic.
This man knew full well the impact his looks had on others, and used it to further his own goals—like finagling a dinner with Grace even though he must know that she didn’t buy his impersonation.  But he didn’t dwell on his magnificence (was that the right adjective?); he didn’t invite attention.
He used it like a shield. A mirror to deflect attempts to see beyond the exterior. A mask that hid the man inside.
Grace’s adjective for him was: intriguing.
And as she was hardly ever intrigued by anything, she decided to see how this would play out.
But equally, she simply wanted to jump his bones. Because his touch set her afire.
It was the closest she’d ever felt to a human being apart from her aunt Maria, who had raised her since she lost both her parents seventeen years ago.
But not the same kind of closeness.
Grace tried to differentiate the two feelings in her mind.
She wasn’t good at identifying feelings much less categorizing them. Her psychiatrist was amazed she could identify feelings at all given her unique case of Asperger’s, though putting a name to her “condition” wasn’t quite accurate—scientists hadn’t found the explanation yet for the faulty wiring in her brain.
Perhaps even in her DNA.
She tapped into her very limited emotional bank now and decided that the closeness she felt toward her aunt was soft and warm and safe.
Whereas the closeness she felt toward the male seated across the table from her was sharp and volcanic and extremely dangerous.
But she was intrigued.
His touch seemed to switch on a part of her that had always been dormant, and this alien part of herself pulled Grace into his orbit like steel flints to a Neodymium super magnet.
In an inner voice she’d never heard before, that part of her shouted Take him! Lock him up somewhere and throw away the key! He’s the answer to all of life’s questions. Your life. Your questions. And the holy grail of puzzles that you will never solve but take endless pleasure in trying.
Hmm. Maybe her arousal was infinitesimally due to him.
More to the point, it was that time of the month for her.
Every month, her hormones surged for a couple of days. Every six months, it lasted more than a few days, a two-week period during which she was especially aroused. She supposed every woman had her own cycles, and this was hers. Which was why she chose a sex partner every six months since she first discovered intercourse with the opposite sex at the age of twenty.
She was already isolated from the world because of her “condition.” She couldn’t relate to or interact with others like normal people. But during this time, when the planets aligned in her own peculiar solar system, she felt alive. She felt fundamentally female.
And she needed a male to fill and fulfill her.
So for the couple of months leading into her sexual crisis, she hunted one down and dragged him home to feed her inner beast.
She intended to devour this particular male.
As she speared him with her unblinking stare, he finished ordering for both of them, handed their menus to a flustered waitress who couldn’t stop grinning at him like a teeth whitening commercial, and looked back at her.
He blinked rapidly at the intensity of her gaze, as if trying to snap himself out of hypnosis.
Yes, magnificent one, her inner harlot coaxed, succumb to my will and obey all my commands. These next two weeks with me will be the best you’ve ever had.

About the Author

Aja has been writing stories since the age of six, and novels since the age of thirteen. While she'd be the first to admit that those early efforts weren't particularly good, she sure loved putting them down on paper!

The best part of writing, according to Aja, is that it’s completely organic, the way the stories develop. When the inspiration hits, she writes just so she herself can learn where the characters are headed because oftentimes, they take her by surprise! It is her ultimate dream to share her stories with as many readers as she possibly can.

Her other loves include art, cooking, old movies (anything with Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe, Robert Redford, Vivien Leigh, Elizabeth Taylor, Paul Newman, Clark Gable, and all the song and dance numbers because she can’t watch them and not be happy!)

She adores taking long walks with her husband and running after her two rambunctious kids. She has traveled extensively (all seven continents except Antarctica) and has had a multi-cultural upbringing. She speaks two and a half languages and binge watch TV shows when the mood strikes.

Aja has a Bachelor’s of Arts in Comparative Literature and Economics and two Master’s degrees, one of which is in East Asian Studies.

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