Double Giveaway Day!

Update: Two winners have been chosen from our commenters. Congrats to: Debra Wright who won Bonnie’s book and Clair Carter, who will receive one of mine!

It’s always a treat to spotlight another author on Monday’s, and today is no exception. My guest is my friend, Bonnie Vanak. We share a past publisher, a current agent and a love for a good story. Bonnie is a special, big-hearted person whose day job regularly takes her to developing countries where she helps people in need. For more about that, pop over to her website. But for now, sit back and enjoy a peek at Bonnie’s newest Nocturne, THE SHADOW WOLF.

“The Shadow Wolf is one heck of a ride that will leave a reader breathless. This story has dark depths and a meaty plot sure to appeal to paranormal romantic suspense readers who look for a quality written story.” ~ Long & Short Reviews

_____________________

from Bonnie…

THE SHADOW WOLF is now in stores!

The Shadow Wolf

Click to order!

On the run from authorities, gutsy Megan Moraine knows shadow wolves like herself have no place in this world. But she’s still prepared to do anything to protect her young charges. That resolve is tested when the trio is captured by Gabriel Robichaux. Everyone knows that Gabriel is a ruthless bounty hunter, a member of an elite group called the Enforcers. Why then is Megan so attracted to her enemy—a wolf who hunts his own people? A wolf whose languid, sexy drawl makes her dream the impossible?

The Shadow Wolf marks my fourth book in the Draicon werewolf series for Harlequin Nocturne. There’s something about a powerful shifter with the beast leashed inside, waiting to be freed. Werewolves are sexy and fun to write. When I created my Draicon wolves, I wanted them to have a true mate, but I didn’t want to make it easy for them.

So I decided that each shifter’s true mate contains their missing magick. Long ago, when the Draicon first came to this dimension to learn of the earth, they were too powerful. So they willingly split themselves in half, dividing up their powers, to blend into our world. When a male and female Draicon who are destined mates find each other, they regain each others’ magick. This is done during sex when they both reach emotional and physical fulfillment.

In The Shadow Wolf, Gabriel is a muscled Cajun werewolf who speaks with a sexy drawl and looks great in faded blue jeans. He seems easygoing, friendly and funny, but he’s got a deep, dark side. Gabriel doesn’t dare get close to anyone should his dark side come out. Megan is a perfect match for Gabriel. Megan has faced prejudice her entire life and longs for an open, honest relationship. She won’t put up with anything less and slowly she begins to peel back Gabriel’s layers to find his true self. Gabriel is torn. He wants Megan, but he also fears an emotional connection. He’s been hurt by betrayal before, yet the wolf inside him knows and recognizes Megan and wants her, badly, as shown in this scene:

Excerpt:

The wolf’s raw power and dark intensity sent a chill down her spine. Larger than most, muscles rippled under the lupine’s gray fur. He could break her spine with one lunge. She wrapped her arms around herself, sinking back into the cover of the mangroves.

Megan peered around the mangroves, her palms growing cold and sweaty. What if Gabriel suddenly turned on them? She’d glimpsed his haunted look when he’d left to shutter the houses. But this wolf was not vulnerable. This wolf could tear and kill and destroy.

Never had she seen such a display, as if the wolf released all the emotions the man could not. This wolf snapped at the surf. It tipped back its head and released a long, mournful howl that echoed the cadence of the crashing waves.

A delicious scent of pine, leather and sweet wine drifted on the wind. It overwhelmed her senses. Megan closed her eyes, overcome with the sensuality calling to her. No wolf she had ever known emitted such an enticing scent.

The idea hit her like a resounding slap on the face. Shadows didn’t do that. From what little she knew, neither did Normals.

Ferals did.

Panic squeezed her throat. Ferals were wild and unpredictable. Their blood ran thick with the instinct to hunt, kill and mate. Male Ferals were dominating, highly sexual and aggressive. Their scents were strong and irresistible to females. When a male saw a female he wanted, the Feral Draicon pursued with ruthless determination until he had her naked and submissive beneath his powerful body.

Yet as she watched Gabriel, doubt laced through the fear. He’d seemed gentle and protective of the twins. As wild as the wolf acted, the man acted restrained. How could Gabriel be a Feral since he was an Enforcer? The Council of Draicon executed vicious Ferals and sent others to demon prisons. As despised as Shadows were, Ferals were hated more. Their ability to blend in with the human populace was limited by their savage animal nature, often triggered by sexual arousal and heightened emotions.

Once the most dangerous Ferals were called Trans-Ferals. Long ago, they’d been hunted to extinction.

Megan felt a tug of empathy for Feral Draicon. As a Shadow, she wanted equality among all their species.

A savage beauty reflected in the wolf’s running with the wind. Her heart thundered again, echoing the cadence of distant crashing thunder. Her pulse raced with excitement.

How she longed to run wild, heedless of watchful Draicon ready to punish her for shifting into a wolf. Megan took one step forward, her body thrumming with anticipation.

The wolf skidded, his big paws digging into the wet sand. He pivoted, his huge head swerving in her direction, focused on her with a predatory look. Wild amber eyes met hers.

The wolf was king. If he wanted, the wolf could track her scent, have her on the ground before she could escape.

Though her heart pounded hard, Megan held her position. She returned the wolf’s dominating look. She blinked, and the wolf was gone, replaced by a man wearing a white shirt and khaki shorts.

Gabriel.

Sea mist dampened his dark hair. His muscled body was hard with sexual aggression. He stalked toward her with determined purpose. Afraid of his power, she stood her ground. Megan refused to lower her gaze as other Draicon would do facing a predator.

“I can smell your fear. I told you before, I won’t hurt you,” he said softly. “How long have you been watching?”

“I just got here,” she admitted. “It was fascinating watching you as a wolf. I can’t remember how long it’s been since I saw a Draicon shift and we’re prohibited from shifting into wolves on Shadow Island.”

“Why can’t you shift?”

“I guess they’re afraid we’ll become more powerful as invisible wolves than invisible in our human form.”

Raw sexuality radiated from him. Megan swallowed hard. “I didn’t come to spy on you. I came looking for you to tell you something.”

He stopped close enough for her to smell his delicious maleness mingling with evergreen and rain. Passion filled his heated gaze. His nostrils flared as if he’d caught her scent. A pulse hammered at the base of his throat.

“Tell me what, chère?”

Though she was still untouched, Megan sensed his desire. He wanted her, badly. And animal instinct fought for control of the man. Something inside her clawed to the surface, wanting him just as badly.

Gabriel unclenched his fists. He caught her hand in his and turned it over. The gentleness of the gesture contrasted sharply to his earlier display of brute strength. He ran a thumb over her cut.

“It’s starting to heal already. Good.” He dropped her hand and traced a line along her jaw. His touch was gentle, but she instinctively recognized the possessiveness.

A wolf marking his territory.

_______________

Bonnie’s parting thoughts…

I love the idea of shifters being so attracted to their mates. This is one reason why I enjoy writing shifter stories. However, for my next few releases, I did deviate a little. Next up is a trilogy of three paranormal erotic novellas titled The Ancients. These short stories are part of Harlequin Nocturne’s new Cravings line. Three triplet sisters are half-demon and half-angel and are coming into their powers. To prevent them from turning demonic, three pararnormal beings are assigned to mate with them and tame their dark powers.

The first novella is Bitten by the Vampire and is out in October. The second is Mated to the Wolf and is a November release, and Hunted by the Jaguar is the third story, out in December.

Thanks for having me on your blog, Mia! To celebrate the release of The Shadow Wolf, I’ll give away a copy of one of my backlist Draicon werewolf books.

You can buy The Shadow Wolf at Barnes and Noble, Amazon, or at eHarlequin.

________________

Thanks for dropping by, Bonnie! I love your richly imagined world.

In addition to Bonnie’s giveaway, I’d like to offer one of my backlist titles too to make this a double giveaway day! All YOU have to do is leave a comment or question for Bonnie. I’ll kick off the conversation with this question:

Whether he’s a shifter or not, historical or contemporary, what quality do you look for most in a hero?

40 thoughts on “Double Giveaway Day!

  1. infinitieh says:

    Heroes should be loyal and honorable. A good sense of humor can’t hurt either.

    cgnemesis [at] yahoo [dot] com

  2. bonnie vanak says:

    Hi Joyce! Thanks for stopping by!

  3. bonnie vanak says:

    Hi Cecily! New Orleans is one of my favorite cities. Good luck there this weekend, I understand that tropical storm is supposed to dump a lot of rain on the city. Stay safe and dry!

  4. bonnie vanak says:

    Hi Catslady, I did write 7 historical romances set in Egypt. I enjoyed the genre, and plan to return to historicals some day.

  5. bonnie vanak says:

    Hi Quilt Lady, my ideas come from many things. Sometimes from setting, such as visiting a wild area of forest, where I can imagine wolves running free. Or hearing inspiring music will do it, too!

  6. bonnie vanak says:

    Hi Aurian, interesting question. I would definitely consider writing about a witch. Maybe in the future!

  7. bonnie vanak says:

    Hi Carol, I think Cajuns have a sexy accent, too! I know Gabriel does. :-)

  8. bonnie vanak says:

    Hi everyone, shortly after posting that last comment of mine, my PC crashed. I had a virus. I’m back now! Sorry for not being around to answer questions.

  9. librarypat says:

    No matter what the genre, I want the hero to have a core goodness and honor. With those traits, all others fall into place.

    librarypat AT comcast DOT net

  10. Carol L says:

    Hi Mia and Bonnie,
    I haven’t read Bonnie’s work yet but I definitely love that Gabriel is a Cajun, they have the sexiest drawls ever. :) I too love the tortured,Alpha male. Loyal and compassionate and wiling to protect their loved ones no matter the consequences.
    Carol L
    Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

  11. SiNn says:

    I so look for a flawed but honets hero one with demons to slay perverbial or literal one with a past that he has to over come I dont like whiney weak heros

  12. Debra Wright says:

    I look for someone who is a strong alpha male and is smart and possesses a great sense of humor. I love paranormal romances and hate to put the book down until I am done.

  13. Chris Bails says:

    I love my hero to be sexy, strong, intelligent, and have a great since of honor. I like a strong alpha male. I like that he does whatever he needs to protect those that he loves(friends and family). I love historical and paranormal romances.
    I would love to win and read these books and hope that am choosen for the giveaway.
    Thanks for the giveaway and the chance to win.
    christinebails@yahoo.com

  14. Chelsea B. says:

    Intelligence. I know that sounds all… blah. But I like a hero, may he be dark and brooding or light and fluffy, that the heroine can hold a conversation with :-)

    1. Mia Marlowe says:

      No that doesn’t sound blah at all! I want both my hero and heroine to be intelligent, whether measured by traditional means or in street smarts.

  15. Na says:

    Qualities I look for in a hero is integrity. He has to be a man of his word., whether brutal or not, this trait builds trust which is so important in relationships.

    1. Mia Marlowe says:

      Integrity is a very attractive quality, Na.

  16. Aurian says:

    Hi Mia and Bonny, great post, I enjoyed reading it. You like writing paranormals, would you ever write about witches?

    1. Mia Marlowe says:

      I certainly would if a character who happened to be one ever stepped forward from my subconscious. I tend to follow my characters around.

  17. Quilt Lady says:

    Hi Bonnie great excerpt. Sounds like a great book. I can’t help but ask this question, where do you get your ideas from?

  18. catslady says:

    I’ve always been drawn to the dark side lol. I enjoyed the excerpt and I think women love the mating for life theme! Have you thought of doing any other genres? And I love honesty, humor and a bit of the bad boy in my heroes.

    1. Mia Marlowe says:

      Agreed. Monogamy works for my heart!

  19. Cecily White says:

    Hi Mia and Bonnie,
    Bonnie, nicely intense excerpt! I love that Gabriel is Cajun. (I’m from New Orleans…) And Mia, I adored what you said about hero and heroine’s souls fitting together. Reminds me of Aristophanes’ story of soulmates in Plato’s Symposium. Oops, a bit heady for a monday morning… sorry ;-)

    Anyway, beautiful writing, y’all!

    XOXO,
    Cecily

    1. Mia Marlowe says:

      Plato’s good any time. He certainly tried to make sense of his world with the knowledge he had. That’s all any of us can do.

  20. Bonnie, I see you are moving on to bigger and better things! Woohoo! Love this excerpt, and now, for me, it’s a must buy like your historicals.

    Best wishes as you make people sit up and take notice as you transition from one sub-genre to another…and another. :)

  21. bonnie vanak says:

    Hey Ashlyn! No, sorry, Nocturne does dark stories only. However, I know some publishers love humorous and lighter paranormals. Good luck! And I agree with you about wolves and their mates.

  22. bonnie vanak says:

    Hi Eli! I used to write historical romances, but now write the paranormal stories because that’s where my stories have found a new home. And with working full time, I don’t have much time to write, so for now, I’m concentrating on the paranormals, which I really enjoy.

    For The Shadow Wolf, this particular story came to me when I was thinking about how dark Gabriel is, and how he hides his darkness behind layers of friendliness and charm. I always envisioned him as a Cajun cowboy, with sharp fangs, lol.

  23. bonnie vanak says:

    Hi Leanne, I get inspired by setting, sometimes. The story I’m writing now for Nocturne Cravings is set in Colorado, a state we just visited. The setting is rough and wild and very appealing to a wild, sexy werewolf!

  24. Barbara Britton says:

    Hi Bonnie and Mia,

    I like a hero who’s good looking, has a great sense of humor, but doesn’t take himself too seriously. I know–hard to find.

    Thanks for sharing your shifters with us today Bonnie.

    1. Mia Marlowe says:

      A man who doesn’t take himself too seriously is a rarity. Hence, an attractive one!

  25. Michelle Drew says:

    Wow – I’m new to Bonnie Vanak’s work, and I gravitate towards paranormal – particularly shifters – it would be such a treat to be the winner as I would be introduced to the work of a new (to me) author in the genre I adore. As to what I really enjoy in a hero – I’ve a huge soft spot for troubled/ misunderstood souls. This is probably part of the reason I’m so drawn to shifter stories. There is the inherent tension between the different (often at odds) needs of the two (or multi) natured.

    1. Mia Marlowe says:

      Ah, yes, the tortured hero. How we long to fix him!

  26. Ashlyn Chase says:

    Hi Bonnie,

    I enjoyed your excerpt. Really wonderful writing. I write shifters too–with one major difference. My genre is light paranormal romance. I don’t suppose Nocturne does anything light, right? LOL

    I do enjoy the protectiveness of my wolves toward their mates–and the fact that they mate for life. Two very romantic notions that most women really love (myself included.)

    1. Mia Marlowe says:

      I think every heart hungers for the kind of exclusivity mating for life implies.

  27. eli yanti says:

    hi bonnie,
    my question is why you choice to write paranormal and nocture story,why not historial romance? i wonder how the story came to you?
    btw,mia and bonnie, thanks for the giveaway?

    1. Mia Marlowe says:

      Glad to do it, Eli!

  28. Leanne Lunn says:

    Is there anything in particular that gives you inspiration?

    1. Mia Marlowe says:

      For me, Leanne, it’s the notion that the divots in one soul will dovetail with the protuberances in another. I want my hero and heroine to need each other in ways no other relationship could satisfy.

  29. Clair Carter says:

    For me it’s a strong sense of honour. There have to be noble core values that are challenged by the heroine in some way, forcing a complete re-evaluation of everything the hero thinks he is/wants. That’s what makes Mr Darcy so wonderful – and all the Mr Darcys since!

    1. Mia Marlowe says:

      Interesting, Clair. You’re suggesting the heroine represents a “paradigm shift” to the hero, so that all his preconceived notions have to be tossed out for her sake. I like it! That really makes the relationship matter.

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