May 1, 2011

Sunday Smooch

Welcome to another LoveCats DownUnder Sunday Smooch!

Today we have a smooch from The Bought-And-Paid-For Wife by guest author Bronwyn Jameson, who writes for Harlequin Desire.

Without further ado, here it is!

The last person widow Vanessa Thorpe expected to see on her doorstep was Tristan Thorpe — her deceased husband’s estranged son. Tristan stood between her and the inheritance she desperately needed. Despite the attraction simmering between them, she could not let him win!

As far as Tristan was concer
ned, Vanessa was a trophy wife — young, stunning and cunning — who married his father for money. He was determined to reveal every dirty little secret she had. That is, until a rage-filled argument suddenly turned into a soul-burning kiss…

He regarded her in silence, a long taut moment that fanned Vanessa's gathering fury.

"I'm giving you the chance to deal with me privately, here and now," he said finally, his voice low and even. "Or would you prefer to take this to court? Would you like to answer all the questions about who and where and how often under oath? Would you like all your society friends to hear--”

“You bastard. Don’t you dare even think about spreading your lies."

“Not lies." Something glinted, brief and dangerous in his eyes. "I intend to dig deep, Vanessa, if that's what it takes to discover all your dirty little secrets. I will find every truth about you. Every last detail.”

Her resentment rose in a thick, choking wave. She wanted to sound icy, imperious, but instead her voice quivered with rage. “You turn up at my home uninvited. You manhandle me. You threaten me with your nasty lies. I can hardly wait to see what you try next.”

Their eyes clashed in a lightning bolt that was eight parts antagonism, two parts challenge. She knew, a split second before he moved, before his hands came up to trap her against the wall, that two parts challenge was two parts too much. And still she couldn't back down, even when his gaze dropped to her lips and caused a slow sweet ripple in her blood. Even when he muttered something low and unintelligible—perhaps an oath, perhaps a warning—beneath his breath.

Then his mouth descended to hers, catching her gasp of indignation.

For a second she was too stunned by the sensation of his lips pressed against hers to react. Everything was new, untried, unfamiliar. The bold presence of his mouth, the rough texture of his skin, the elemental taste of rain and sun and man.

Everything was unexpected except the electric charge that flashed through her skin and tightened her breasts. That was the same as when he'd touched her, the same as when he'd watched her walk away, the same as when she'd turned at the library door and caught him staring.

She heard the accelerated thud of her heartbeat and scrambled to compose herself, to reject that unwanted response. But then he shifted his weight slightly and she felt the brush of his jacket against her bare arm. For some reason that slide of body-warmed fabric seemed more intimate than the kiss itself, and the effect shimmered through her skin like liquid silk.

The hands she'd raised to shove him away flattened against his chest and the slow beat of his heart resonated into her palms. With a shock she realized that she wasn't only touching him but kissing him back, just now, for one split second. Oh, no. A thousand times no. Her eyes jolted open, wide and appalled, as she pushed with renewed purpose.

His mouth stilled for one measured second before he let her go. The message was clear: he'd instigated this; he was ending it. Damn him. And damn her traitorous body for reacting to whatever weird male-female chemistry was going on between them.

The Bought-And-Paid-For Wife is a Mills & Boon Special Release in Australia and New Zealand this month, May 2011. To be in the draw to win a signed copy, PLUS the winner's choice of another of Bronwyn's Special Release or Bestseller Collection re-releases, simply answer the question she has posed below!

The Bought-and-Paid-For Wife is part of the series "Secret Lives of Society Wives." If I were to have a "secret life", it would be as a beta-taster in a dessert restaurant. What is your idea of the perfect "secret life"?

Come back next Sunday, when the winner of today's giveaway will be announced -- and a smooch from Hunter's Surrender by Anna Hackett will be posted!


  1. Bronwyn
    Loved that excerpt I do look forward to reading this one.

    As for a secret life perhaps checking out the cover models for the romance books I read LOL or a taste tester at the Lindt chocolate factory.

    Have Fun

  2. Bronwyn, thanks for visiting the LoveCats, and especially for bringing that fabulous kiss with you!

    I've read this book, and I *loved* it! Then again, Bronwyn Jameson is one of my favourite authors, so that's not a huge surprise that this was another treasure. :)

    If I had a secret life? I think I'd be with Helen at the Lindt factory. Room for one more, Helen?

  3. Fantastic kiss, Bronwyn -- it really crackles! Can't wait to read how they resolve their issues!

    If I were to have a secret life, it would definitely have to be something to do with travel. Perhaps I could check the accuracy of travel guides??? (Not that I'm in the draw!)

  4. Oh, wow, Bron! Wow!!! That kiss sizzles and smoulders and has me itching to read this book... as in NOW please :-).

    Hmm, a secret life... you know, I've always had a secret longing to be a cowgirl. A girl, a horse and a wide open plain... and a cattleman waiting somewhere in the distance. Sigh.

  5. Chocolate and cowboys and travel: can I have ALL those, please? (Not that I'm greedy or anything.)

    Thanks so much for inviting me to guest at LoveCats Down Under. I love this place and the Sunday Smooches. They're a bit like a box of chocolates, aren't they, with different tastes and textures, the luscious soft centres, the hard and the brittle, the sweet, the dark, and those with a bite. Needless to say, I'm a fan of them all. :-)


  6. Bronwyn
    Looking forward to reading the book after the tempting excerpt.
    My secret life would be trying out luxurious tropical resorts and day spas!

  7. Hi Bronwyn,

    I'm looking forward to reading The Bought And Paid For Wife after this tantalising glimpse!

    Secret life...I already have one! Hoarding and buying books secretly!

  8. That all too small of a taste compounds a hundred times why I love your stories and characters. That was soooo good! But now I want more =)
    Robbie xo

  9. Bronwyn that kiss was divine!!!
    Loved the war she fights within herself - and loses =)

  10. Bronwyn, I love this kiss! Actually, I love the whole book and I already have it on my shelf! It's a delicious read so the commenter who wins this is in for a treat!

    As for my secret life... today my choice would to be instantly fitter! I've been stacking wood and the aches are catching up with me now! Either that or I love Samantha's nose from Bewitched - I could have wiggled it and the wood would have neatly stacked itself!


  11. Looking forward to reading the book after the excerpt.Very Hot!!!
    Turtle Cheesecake...very hidden secret of mine.My clothes size tells

  12. Oh Bron - that was just *fabulous*. What a great kiss. THATS what I was waiting for on the balcony of Buckingham Palace :)

    My secret life would have something to do with being Johnny Depp's chauffeur. Thought about being his costumer but all that touching without *touching* would be soul-destroying. But if I was his driver I could just watch, quietly, in that rear-vision-mirror.... And be a trusted confidante. Irreplacable. Indespensible.

    That's how all good romances start, isn't it...?

    SO lovely to see you here.

  13. Loved the kiss, Bron. For my secret life, I'd like to be an astral traveler.
    Cathleen Ross

  14. "Weird male-female chemistry"! - Love it.
    Well, after the royal betrothing on Friday, it would have to be something to do with the royals. Lady in waiting to Queen Catherine maybe? Not sure how secret it would be - maybe that's more a fantasy life?

  15. Wow, what a kiss! Very well done. In my secret life can I be one of your heroines? I guess every reader wants to be and does which is why they buy your books! There are so many RWA members books we can't possibly buy all of them but I'll definitely buying this one.

  16. Unless I have a real secret life, in which I posted somewhere secret last night instead of here, something's eaten my post. It was a good one, I can assure you, spanning cheesecake, nose-wiggling, book hoarding and day spas.

    Perhaps I was so busy thinking of desserts that I typed cheesecake instead of the captcha...

  17. So, there, posted, phew.

    Thanks everyone for dropping by and stroking my poor writerly ego with kind words about my smooch. It's been fun to read about your fantasy lives.

    Zoe, yours is genius. There are so many reasons to want that secret life. Beyond the obvious advantages they have cool jobs and quick wits and smart mouths.

    Thanks again, LCs, for having me and my smooch.


  18. If I had a secret life I'd like to be a physiotherapist & legally get my hands on some hunky athletes :)

  19. Thanks for sharing that kiss, Bronwyn. Oh my!!! Another one to add to the list! I love it :) Now, if I had a secret life ... well apparently all I'd need is my very own Tristan Thorpe and I'd be a very happy girl xx

  20. Thanks for the AWESOME KISS!!!For my secret life...Jewel Thief.Only to see if I could do it.I would give them back ;)eventually ;)