OMG, the long-awaited third book in my historical paranormal romance series is here!! BITE AT FIRST SIGHT is the story of Rafael Villar, the surly scarred vampire introduced in BITE ME, YOUR GRACE, and Cassandra Burton, widowed Countess of Rosslyn and aspiring physician.
This book was so fun to write!
Here's the blurb:
"Her interest is purely scientific…
Cassandra Burton wants to study medicine, surgery, healing, and everything related to the human body and its mysteries—and she’s willing to rob graves to do it. But a lady can meet dark and dangerous characters lurking around the cemetery. And who could be more dangerous--and fascinating--than Rafael Villar, Lord Vampire of London? If she could study his physiology, she could learn so much that would help humans. After all, he’s immortal—and Cassandra is now his prisoner.
Until she gets close enough to touch
As if Rafael didn’t have enough to worry about, with a rebellion brewing and his allies out of reach, now he’s confronted by a beautiful, fearless lady who wants to heal the scars he’s born for centuries. He can’t keep her, and he can’t let her go, and worst of all, he’s every bit as intrigued by her as she is by him."
And I get to celebrate this release in a big way. I'll be signing copies at the Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas on Saturday for THE NOVEL EXPERIENCE book event. The signing is at the hotel on April 4th from 10-5 and it is FREE and open to the public!
And on Tuesday, April 7th, I'll be doing a Virtual Release Party on Facebook! There will be many prizes given away by me and my incredible list of guest authors.
Here's the schedule!
3:00 - 3:30 PST - Terry Spear
3:30 - 4:00 PST - Shana Galen
4:00 - 4:30 PST - Christi Caldwell
4:30 - 5:00 PST - Gina Conkle
5:00 - 5:30 PST - Paige Tyler
5:30 - 6:00 PST - Cheryl Brooks
6:00 - 6:30 PST - Jade Lee
6:30 - 7:00 PST - Sara Humphreys
7:00 - 7:30 PST - Sarah Castille
And if you're in the Inland Northwest, I'll be doing another signing at the Coeur d'Alene HASTINGS from 5pm-8:30 pm on the 17th!
I'm so excited!
And here's an excerpt of the opening chapter!
“If one desires a task to be accomplished correctly, one must do it herself.” Cassandra Burton, dowager Countess of Rosslyn repeated the litany as she pulled the rickety little wagon through the moonlit aisle of tombstones.
She shivered under her velvet cloak. Her fingers had long since gone numb with the effort of navigating the dratted conveyance over uneven ground and across slippery, damp grass. Shovels and pry bars clanked across the wagon’s worn pine boards. The winch rattled on its frame.
Something flickered across the corner of her vision.
Cassandra jumped. She stopped and rubbed her gloved hands together for warmth, surveying the graveyard. The area was still and silent as …well, a tomb. Yet the chill in her spine refused to abate. A scornful frown turned her lips at such irrational behavior. Ghosts were an illogical figment of uneducated imaginations and no one could possibly have business out here at this hour …except herself.
“Worthless curs,” Cassandra whispered in as haughty a tone she could manage.
If only the men to whom she’d offered a more than generous sum to perform this troublesome task had done their duty rather than disappearing. She shook her head, further lamenting the inconvenience they’d left her with. If not for their unreasonable negligence, I would now be comfortably ensconced in my laboratory unraveling the secrets of the human body … not out in this cold, dreary place, jumping at shadows.
Surveying the newest graves, she read the dates to discern which would be the best specimen. Her mind nagged her as to the mysterious disappearances of her hired hands. Could a murderer be on the loose? She shook her head and pulled the folds of her cloak tighter, shielding her body from the crisp autumn air. No, the authorities would have found their bodies by now and the news would be sensationalized in The Times.
“They were cowards,” she asserted aloud, fighting back a shiver as the wind whispered through the grass and dead leaves. “But I am not.”
To prove her lack of irrational fear, Cassandra fetched a shovel from the wagon. Her hands trembled as she grasped the wooden handle. “I am only nervous.”
And she had every reason to be. Removing the dead from their graves was illegal. If a constable caught her, she’d be sent directly to Fleet prison. Halting her wagon and taking a shovel, a fresh surge of trepidation curled in her belly.
For some inexplicable reason, exhuming a corpse, rather than having one ready on her operating table was quite a different matter. The prospect of removing the body from its carefully arranged resting place and the chore of winching it out of the ground and loading it onto her cart made the situation seem more gruesome than objective. However, gruesome or not, Cassandra needed her specimen for her work to continue. And she would acquire it no matter how much her nerves protested.
Despite being barred from official education as a physician because of her sex, Cassandra was determined to learn the skills to become a doctor. She needed to learn everything she could about human anatomy. For that, she required cadavers.
Returning to the graves, she made her selection. Alfred Lumley, born September first, 1801, died September seventeenth, 1823. Three days ago Alfred had been a living twenty-two year old man, three years younger than herself. Whether or not he’d been healthy, she would soon determine. A pang of sorrow struck her heart. His soul is in heaven, she reminded herself. A mere shell remains. A shell which will help me to aid the living.
She raised the shovel, ready to plunge it into the soft soil. “I am not afraid. I am not.”
“You should be.” A sinister, accented voice pierced her consciousness.