I’m thrilled to be here celebrating the release of my 21st book, HARD AS STEEL! After a midnightbreak-in at her apartment, close friends and Hard Ink Tattoo co-workers Ike Young and Jessica Jakes are forced into hiding—and forced to confront the feelings they’ve always denied for one another. I have always adored friends-to-lovers and forced proximity stories, and HARD AS STEEL delivers that and more, including a taste of both my award-winning and best-selling Hard Ink and upcoming Raven Riders series! Check out this excerpt:
They stared at each for a long moment. Jess went from feeling amused to awkward to observed…and that made her hot. Especially as she was standing there in nothing but a towel.
As if he could hear her thoughts, Ike’s gaze slowly ran down her neck to her chest. She wiped at something there and the wetness on the fingers told her it had been a droplet of water from her hair. Ike watched the movement of her hand openly, hungrily, and his desire made her bold, daring, hungry in return.
Without giving herself time to second guess the idea, she reached out and lightly dragged her wet fingers against his bottom lip.
And it was like she’d unleashed a beast.
Ike grabbed her wrist and hauled her to him. He was on her everywhere. His hands in her hair, on her back, grabbing her ass and lifting her up. His tongue licked the exact route that water droplet had taken, from chest to neck to ear. And then he was kissing her, fucking her mouth with his tongue, absolutely devouring her.
Jess held on like her life depended on it, and at some point she became aware of the breeze on her bare skin. She’d dropped the towel, which meant she was totally buck-ass naked in Ike’s big arms, and she couldn’t have cared less.
Ike licked her mouth, sucked her tongue, nipped at her lips. He turned and made for the stairs, and Jess thought she might die from sheer joy and anticipation. He tasted like strength and sin and sex, and she tightened her legs around his hips as he carried her to the loft, eager to see if all of him tasted so good—or even better.
When they reached the second floor, Ike growled low in his throat and his grip tightened on her on her ass, his fingers digging in. She moaned and--
Cool air from the ceiling fan washed over Jess as Ike dropped her onto the bed—and promptly turned around to leave. Jess was so stunned she couldn’t speak. Just as he hit the top of the steps, he said, “Don’t fucking tease me, Jessica. I’m trying to do right by you, but I’m still just a goddamned man.”
*I received a copy in exchange for an honest review.*
If there was ever a perfect crossover novella to end one series and begin another, Hard As Steel is it! Ike and Jess were relatively unknown characters to me but in the space over just over one hundred pages, I cared for them, rooted for them and rejoiced with them!
Hard As Steel is one sexy little novella. It captured the sizzling chemistry between Ike Young and Jessica James. All Ike wanted to do was to protect Jess, he told himself she was off limits but Jess had a sass that I liked and I’m glad she didn’t take no for answer.
I love the Hard Ink series and this novella was a perfect bonus, I’m glad I got to know Ike and Jess, and the crew of new characters that were introduced just makes me hungry for the Raven Riders series.
Laura Kaye is becoming one of my must read authors. She creates real characters, evokes real feelings and provides real entertainment. Everything I could want in an author.
I highly recommend this series!
Laura is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over twenty books in contemporary and paranormal romance and romantic suspense. Growing up, Laura’s large extended family believed in the supernatural, and family lore involving angels, ghosts, and evil-eye curses cemented in Laura a life-long fascination with storytelling and all things paranormal. She lives in Maryland with her husband, two daughters, and cute-but-bad dog, and appreciates her view of the Chesapeake Bay every day.
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