Contemporary Romantic Suspense
One violent night shatters Lauren Biltmore’s life. As an anchorwoman, she's accustomed to reporting the news rather than being the lead story. She escapes the spotlight by fleeing to her brother's home in the Cayman Islands. Haunted by nightmares, all she wants is a distraction from reality.
Distraction arrives via sexy screenwriter, Noah Reynolds. His take-me-to-bed looks mask a past ripe with scandal. He knows he should stay away from Lauren, especially when the worst night of her life unlocks his writer's block and while he's dealing with a stalker of his own, but ethics are his weakness.
Attraction sizzles beneath Caribbean sunshine. As their relationship grows, Noah's stalker intensifies her torment. Lauren wonders if her paranoia is justified or a carryover from her past. What's real? What's imagined? Tentative trust is tested as their love is swept up against a riptide of deceit, murder, and revenge.
Riptide Book Trailer
“When you look at me, do you think about why I’m here or what I’ve done like Larry does? Tell me the truth,” she whispered against his neck.
“No, I don’t. That’s the truth.” Fingers on her chin, he tilted her face up to look at him. “I see a beautiful woman who’s my friend’s sister and who I’ve been having elicit fantasies about for nearly forty-eight hours even though I know it’s a bad idea.”
“It is a bad idea.” She stared into his eyes as if trying to see his soul. She needed at least one person in this world who didn’t think of her as damaged. “You don’t know me. You don’t know what I’m capable of. I saw the way you looked at me back there. You were wondering if I’d snap.”
“Because a man had been shot next to you, not because of your past. Damn it, I’m shaken up myself.” He pressed his forehead against hers. “You tried to protect me, wanted me to tamper with evidence, that’s sexy as hell.”
She grinned despite the weight that had fallen on her shoulders. “I wanted to see what was in the envelope.”
“Ahh...so you were driven by curiosity.” His thumb traced the curve of her lower lip. “You’re one helluva woman, Lauren Biltmore.”
“You don’t know me.” She looped her hands around his neck and leaned closer. Damn, the man felt like heaven. “Is someone trying to hurt you, Noah?”
In the darkness, it was hard to tell if the shadows across his face were caused by clouds over the moon or unspoken emotion.
“No one’s trying to hurt me.” His grin seemed fake. “Let’s get you back to Austin’s.”
She held him when he would have stepped back. “You’re lying.”
He pushed his hands through her hair, gaze scanning her face. “Like you said, I don’t know you, and you don’t know me. Maybe it’s best if we stop this before it goes any further. You don’t need my kind of trouble in your life right now.”
“Maybe your kind of trouble is exactly what I need.” She kissed him because the adrenaline surging through her body needed release, and he was the perfect outlet.
He matched her intensity with a fierceness that weakened her knees. She sagged against him, hands clinging to his shoulders for support. Trouble or not, the man kissed like a porn star. Damn, he melted the skin from her bones with every stroke of his tongue against hers.
Her hands roamed over his shoulders to his back. She pressed closer, craving skin on skin. One thought and one thought only penetrated her mind...sex. She wanted him inside her. Now. Fast. To hell with the consequences.
Together they fell against the sand with laughter tangled between their lips. Somewhere between fleeing a crime scene and kissing, fear had transitioned to passion. She needed his touch, his mouth, his body heavy against hers. Desire consumed every cell of her body.
“We’re the most unethical people I know,” he said against her mouth. “I shouldn’t be proud of that, but strangely I am.”
“Take me back to Austin’s. Stay with me.” She caught his lip lightly between her teeth and stared into his eyes.
His hand slid beneath her skirt and up her thigh. “I don’t know if we’re good or bad for each other. I’m not thinking clearly at all around you, making bad decisions, dragging you along with me.”
“I’m going willingly.” She nipped his neck, her hands smoothing down his back before grabbing his ass. “We have too many clothes on.”
“And we’re on a beach within view of anyone who happens to walk by and look closely enough.” He laughed against the side of her face. “Let me take you home.”
“And you’ll stay with me?” She kissed him again, unwilling to let him go. He felt too damn good pressing her into the cool sand at her back.
His kiss softened and teased as his hand caressed her naked thigh beneath the skirt, his thumb moving over her panties. She hungered for him like a woman coming off a diet craved chocolate.
“I’m such a bastard,” he whispered before rolling off of her and covering his face with his hands. “I can’t do this. It’s not right.”
The abruptness of his absence rattled her. They laid side-by-side, their breathing labored and a sea of stars above them.
“Do what? Me? Us? What can’t you do?” she asked even though she didn’t want to talk. No, talking was the furthest thing from her agenda.
“I can’t be the man you need me to be.” He sat up and looked toward the ocean. “That’s just how it is. I’m not a good guy. It’s for the best. Trust me.”
Keep the flame burning by Amber Lea Easton
In today’s impersonal technological society with overloaded work schedules and limited free time, it’s easy to label romance as frivolous. But is letting someone know you think they’re special truly a waste of time? I don’t think so. I believe with all of my heart that the busier we are, the more important it is to keep the flame of romance alive.
Let’s face it--when we’re 80 years old and the pace of our younger years has slowed, we’re going to want to walk the path of life holding the hand of our best friend. If we abandon romance for the sake of productivity, that long term personal goal may be lost.
The word ‘romance‘ intimidates some people. Perhaps they think it means over-the-top gestures that cost a fortune or something that requires a great deal of effort. Maybe some think romance is only reserved for special occasions like anniversaries or holidays. That’s not the case, though. True romance is simple and best served up daily.
Here are some ideas:
* Send a text message that says “thinking of you”. None of us are too busy to do that, no matter how important we think we are. It’s amazing how receiving such a simple message can completely change someone’s day, make them pause in the hectic world and smile with the knowledge that someone out there thinks they’re amazing.
* Let your significant other know how thankful you are for them being in your life by actually saying the words, “thank you”. What? Really? Thank you? That’s it? Yes. “Thank you for dinner” or “thank you for listening to me” go a long way in letting someone know they’re valued.
* A random foot massage can completely awe your significant other. The next time you’re winding down from the day or after a nice date when you’re cozying up on the sofa, just start giving your significant other a foot massage while watching television or having an easy conversation. Foot massages are easy to do on the fly because most people have their shoes off when kicking back after the day so it requires little prep work and provides the perfect opportunity for spontaneity.
* Always find an opportunity to touch. Whether it’s at the dinner table, passing each other in the kitchen, driving in the car...touch each other. Connect.
What I’m saying is that romance isn’t about gifts or grandiose gestures. Romance is about letting someone know they’re special to you, it’s about making someone a priority over the meeting you’re going to or the game on Facebook, it’s about establishing a connection built on trust and admiration. Romance is what keeps that love connection burning and building.
With our hectic lifestyles, it’s easy to let stress be the focus of our day to day existence. But that’s not what life is about--it’s not. Life is about love. Life is about how me make someone else feel. Life is about the relationships we create along the way. So be romantic today. Let someone know how special they are to you. Even if you’re not in a love relationship, go ahead and tell someone you love today that they’re on your mind. It’ll make them smile--what an amazing gift that is!
Amber Lea Easton is a multi-published fiction and nonfiction author. For twenty years, she's worked in the fields of journalism and advertising with a brief detour into the financial industry. Although she holds a BA in Communications & Journalism, she is a perpetual student of life who enjoys taking post-graduate courses on a wide variety of subjects when time allows. Smart is sexy, according to Easton, which is why she writes about strong female characters who have their flaws and challenges, but who ultimately persevere.
Easton currently lives with her two teenagers in the Colorado Rocky Mountains where she gives thanks daily for the gorgeous view outside her window. She finds inspiration from traveling, the people she meets, nature and life’s twists and turns. At the end of the day, as long as she's writing, she considers herself to be simply "a lucky lady liv'n the dream."
Learn more about Amber here... Email / Website / Blog / Facebook / Twitter