If there’s anything I truly appreciate about romance stories, it’s the sensation the characters are totally thrown for a loop. I love the utter confusion that can occur when a hero sees the heroine for the first time, and thinks, “Wow.” Even if the characters start out despising each other, the initial chemistry is what grabs me and keeps me reading.
In my own romances, I always try to hit the characters upside the head with lust firstly, and then an enduring love. I like to show they are completely devastated, undeniably changed by their experience. And determined to make sure nothing bad ever happens to each other, once they accept their love.
Have you ever been completely shocked by unexpected love or lust? Have you ever experienced that debilitating, yet delicious feeling? I know I certainly hope that we all get to enjoy the same feelings in real life, even if we’re not cuddling up to a sexy shifter or intense vampire.
In the paranormal world, these emotions are often heightened. In fact, the characters will often talk about how their feelings seem to run deeper than the average person. As a writer, this is a wonderful phenomenon to explore and exploit. There’s nothing better than seeing a lusty, headstrong Alpha man reduced to a puddle of goo by a certain mortal woman.
The same happens in my new release Predator’s Serenade, book 2 of my Gemini Island series. Bear shifter hero Soren Snow is a changed man once he glimpses mortal heroine Gioia for the first time. It was so fun to describe his fall into love, and I’m so excited to bring him to you. Goodness knows, Soren fights it like the best of them…however, love conquers all, including a big, bad bear!
There are three things that make bear shifter Soren Snow’s skin crawl: mothers, their children, and the great outdoors. Soren is a famed musician and playboy, and he would rather spend his days pressing the flesh with the women in his fan club than developing meaningful relationships. When his brother calls in a favor, forcing Soren to revisit the Ursa Fishing Lodge in Northern Ontario, he couldn’t be more displeased. However, he owes his brother big time.
Gioia Clementine would rather not meet Soren, her drummer son’s rock idol. But when tragedy strikes her home, it seems the only one the boy might respond to is Soren. Gioia begrudgingly agrees to let her son meet him, hoping the rock star won’t turn her tween into a musical misogynist.
When Gioia and Soren meet, the sexual chemistry threatens to set the Ontario woodland ablaze. Can these two opposites find a common ground? And can they manage to resolve their unwanted feelings, even when a mysterious stranger arrives at the lodge, threatening everything?
Gioia followed Soren’s approach with a curious eye. She’d wondered if the miracle kisser would beat a hasty retreat after witnessing her boy fall to pieces, and yet here he was. He wore the same famished look he had right before he’d ruined her for any other man’s kiss. And she felt it too. The tingles between her shoulder blade, the gelatin knees, and trembling lips that wanted to gobble him up.
She couldn’t. She didn’t want to saddle him with such a wreck of a woman or family.
He came right up to her, so close, as if making a mockery of the space that sought to separate them. Weaving his fingers through her hair, he cradled her skull and pulled her close. Tucking her head against his chest, he kissed the top of her head, blazing a trail of hot reaction down her spine. He had new clothes on and smelled fresh and clean. As she breathed him in, he rained soft kisses all over her head.
She pulled away, suddenly terrified he’d think she was a travesty of a mother. It’s what anyone would think in his case. They’d wonder what Gioia had done wrong to create a monster child. But as she attempted to remove herself from his grasp, Soren fought her by holding her still. Again she tried jerking away from his wall of a chest. He held her firm.
When she tried two more times, each time unsuccessfully, he looked at her and shouted, “Dammit, woman, I am not letting you go, so you can stop pulling away from me!”
Something in Gioia broke. She’d been carrying her sadness around for so long, trying to be strong, and Soren was offering to be strong for her. For just a moment, maybe she could surrender. God only knew how badly she wanted to give herself to the bear man.
He grabbed her tighter, and his hands slid down to mold over her ass cheeks. His warm breath was all over her face, and she took a dizzying dive into the seas of his eyes. He ground her against him, and she was forced to stand on tip toes.
“Gioia,” he whispered.
She wound her arms about his tense neck, felt him tense further. Then … a sigh somewhere in his big frame and a relaxation in his muscles. As if he needed to have her wound about him. As if it soothed him as much as her.
As he kissed her, he picked her up, his hands under her bottom. Her miniskirt rode up, and she spared a second to mentally curse her decision to wear it. And then she didn’t care.
Kissing her madly, Soren spirited her into the woods.
* * * * *
Rosanna Leo is a multi-published, erotic romance author with Liquid Silver Books. Her books include For the Love of a God, Up In Flames, and Sweet Hell. When not writing, she can be found haunting dusty library stacks or planning her next star-crossed love affair.