In anticipation of Eros Element coming out in August, my urban fantasy series will be on sale, one book at a time, one week at a time this summer. Yes, Eros Element is steampunk, but there are a lot of readers – like me! – who like both.
Here are the buy links for the first, The Mountain’s Shadow, which is on sale for 99 cents now through July 24:
Some mistakes can literally come back to bite you.
The Lycanthropy Files, Book 1
First it was ADD. Then pediatric bipolar. Now the hot behavioral disorder in children is CLS, or Chronic Lycanthropy Syndrome. Public health researcher Joanie Fisher was closing in on the cause in hopes of finding a treatment until a lab fire and an affair with her boss left her without a job.
When her grandfather leaves her his multimillion-dollar estate in the Ozarks, though, she figures her luck is turning around. Except her inheritance comes with complications: town children who disappear during full moons, an irresistible butler, and a pack of werewolves who can’t seem to decide whether to frighten her or flirt with her.
Joanie’s research is the key to unraveling the mysteries of Wolfsbane Manor. However, resuming her work means facing painful truths about her childhood, which could result in the loss of love, friendship, and the only true family she has left.
Warning: Some sexy scenes, although nothing explicit, and adult language. Also alcohol consumption and food descriptions that may wreck your diet.
Here’s an excerpt, the first time Joanie sees the wolves and recognizes that CLS might be more than a psychiatric disorder:
At three o’clock I was wide awake. Sure, I felt like someone had hit me over the head with a wine bottle, but something had awakened me, and for once it wasn’t the usual nightmare. Although at that time of night, it seemed like bad dreams couldn’t be too far away. No, it had to be something else, something external. I listened and discerned voices coming from outside. For a moment, I dismissed it as the usual hubbub outside my apartment, but then I jerked fully awake. I was at my grandfather’s manor in the middle of nowhere, Arkansas. The only people in the house were me, Lonna and the butler.
I put on my robe and slippers and tiptoed down the hall and stairs. My feet remembered the location of the creaky boards and avoided them. Instead of going through the front door, I crept through the kitchen and out the side door to the small kitchen garden.
The almost full moon illuminated the lawn and surrounding trees with weird shadows. I paused and crouched behind a hedge and tried to still the beating of my heart so my ears could pick up the voices again.
“Let Ronan make the kill,” one of them, a female argued. The voice sounded familiar. I peeked through the shrubs and saw a pack of wolves too large to be Arkansas red wolves or coyotes. Two of them, the largest and smallest, were black, and they were accompanied by a silver wolf and a golden one. They circled a deer, the animal’s eyes wide with fear at having been driven out into the open and surrounded by predators.
“He’s young,” another replied.
Talking wolves? Am I dreaming? I shut my eyes and opened them after a few seconds. Nope, still there.
“I don’t know, guys. We shouldn’t be here.”
“The old man always let us hunt here. Why should now be different?”
“Is a flat-chested, elf-faced ivory-tower academic who won’t even know we’ve been here.” It was the female’s voice again. “If you’re careful, Ronan.”
The golden wolf lunged at the deer but misjudged its angle, and two of the others leapt aside as the animal crashed through their circle, hooves flying.
“We’ve got to figure out how real wolves do this,” panted the silver one as they took chase.
Real wolves? I shook my head. It was too incredible. What were these things? And what did my grandfather have to do with them?
I waited five or ten minutes to make sure they wouldn’t come back and staggered to my feet, my head still reeling from what I’d just witnessed. Especially the last comment by the gray wolf. If they weren’t real wolves, what were they?
“Amazing night, isn’t it?”
The voice shocked me, and I wheeled around. For a moment, it sounded like my grandfather, and I was transported back in time to my childhood as he and I stood on the balcony and found constellations. I was never good at it, my brain already bent to the reality of math and science rather than fanciful creatures in the stars.
A flicker of flame and then the smoldering ash of the end of a cigarette brought me back to the present. I coughed.
“Thought I’d light up while you thought about your answer.”
Leonard Bowman stood there, leaves stuck to his sweater and jeans. The light of his cigarette and the moon flickered in his dark eyes.
“What are you doing here?”
He raised an eyebrow. “I could ask you the same question.”
“It’s my grandfather’s house.”
No answer, just a long stream of smoke.
“It’s my house,” I finally said. The words felt awkward on my tongue, and I became aware I was standing in my nightshirt and boxers in a flimsy robe on a cool night. I shivered.
“So your lawyer says.”
I tried my best imitation of a Gabriel shrug. Leonard smiled and dropped the cigarette, which extinguished with a hiss in the dew-damp grass.
“So do you always lurk in the bushes of your own house?”
My cheeks burned with the flush that crept up my neck. “Not always. Sometimes I lurk in the trees.”
“I’d be careful if I were you, then.” A smile flickered across his lips, but his eyes remained serious. “You never know what might be in the woods around here.”
Thank you so much for reading the excerpt! If you would like to know when the next two books in the series will be on sale or to find out more about my other books, sleep (I’m a behavioral sleep medicine specialist), and wine, please sign up for my email newsletter.
To purchase The Mountain’s Shadow, please visit one of the following or anywhere ebooks are sold: