I’m delighted to welcome my Liquid Silver pub buddy T.D. Hassett over today. She’s a writer of smoking hot contemporary romances (do not let those covers fool you), and she’s got a brand new book to talk about. Her new release, Darling’s Desire, is a rocker romance and the third book in her Love and Music series.
I’ll let her tell you all about it.
1. Hi Tiffany, and welcome to my blog. As my first guest in the rocker romance subgenre, you get to explain what ties them all together. Does music play a significant role, perhaps?
Absolutely! The series follows the boys in the rock band Becket. Each sexy and stubborn one of them finds true love when they least expect it. These gorgeous alphas meet their match with heroines that bring them to their knees.
Thomas’ story is the first in the series but they are standalone full-length novels; no worries about the cliffhanger endings that many readers don’t like. Each book includes a bit of mystery and steamy love scenes that contradict the sweet looking covers.
2. Although Ross is a drummer, a concert’s not how he and Darling meet. Can you tell me more about this mysterious lake house where the two meet?
Darling needs to pack up her late grandmother’s lake house and decide what to do with the property. It has a checkered past; her mother disappeared from that house years before and recently a handyman was found dead on the property. Despite the house’s history, Darling’s best friend thinks it would make a fabulous weekend stop over for her and a couple members of the band. The weekend becomes a bit longer for troubled drummer Ross and his hesitant hostess.
3. I’m getting the reluctant lovers vibe from Ross and Darling. Do they both have reasons for not wanting to fall for each other just yet?
Now what fun would a romance novel be without some serious tension? Ross sees Darling as too innocent for the likes of a jaded rock star such as himself. Besides, as soon as he clears up a paperwork issue he is on a jet to Europe to finish up a world tour – who has time for anything beyond a one-night stand?
Darling has been used and abused in a past relationship. She’s vowed to never read more into a man than what he says. Ross might be hot but he’s troubled. He lost his wife less than a year before. How can she be lusting after a man still in mourning? She’s also busy dealing with local vandals trying to force her out – who has time for infatuation?
4. Despite these reservations, a birdie tells me “passions ignite.” Would you mind sharing a snippet from around the time this happens?
He might have dozed for a bit but was wide-awake at the sound of a splash coming from the lake. He leaped to his feet and ran down the steps to the dock. His heart pounded in his chest. He looked out into the black water with only the gibbous moon and some twinkling lights from the house’s windows aiding his view. There, just a dozen feet away and a couple feet down in the water. He slowly started to breathe again. This was no sea monster or what he’d feared the most, a toddling William fallen into the lake. This was a sea nymph come back to haunt him again.
He waited on the dock, watching the slow strokes of her arms slice through the water until she emerged into the night air. “You gave me a scare. I didn’t know skinny-dipping was part of the party plans.” She startled at his voice and sucked in a little water. He gave her a wink and watched her try to regain her composure.
“I’m not skinny-dipping, and I thought you went to bed.” She swam closer to the dock and rested a hand on the scuffed wood.
Darling heaved herself out of the water and twisted her body to sit gracefully on the scarred deck. “Could you hand me that towel?” she asked, pointing to the neatly folded pile by his foot. Ross forced his attention away from Darling as she toweled her bathing suit-clad body dry. She wrapped it around her body sarong-style and wrung the water out of her hair.
“You often go swimming this late at night? I mean, I just want to know what time to be out here for the show.” Ross shifted his weight from one foot to the other, wondering why the hell he was torturing himself by staying out here with Darling practically naked. The moon shone down, steam rising off the lake providing a mysterious glow.
“I haven’t been here since I was nine years old, but yes, back then we used to come down for night swimming.” She shivered a bit, and he caught sight of a flush of goose bumps on her skin. Guess the night air isn’t quite so warm after a dip in the lake.
“You’re shivering. Come here.” Ross pulled her into his arms and rubbed his warm hands up and down her bare limbs to warm her. He really shouldn’t be doing this. He was playing with fire.
“I didn’t mind the chill afterward when I was a kid. Brrr.” She snuggled against him, and he knew all was lost. He moved his finger under her chin and tipped her head back, finding her parted lips with his own. She didn’t move a muscle. At first, it was like she was a statue until he gently licked her upper lip and pressed his kiss deeper into her mouth. Darling let out a soft mew and began nibbling on his mouth and sliding her tongue against his. She tasted like vanilla and salt and smelled of the fresh outdoors and something that was all her own scent. He pulled her tighter against him, teasing his erection against her soft belly and already thinking about what he would like to do next. It had been so long since he’d felt desire, at least desire that he acted upon. He was separated from her lush body by a beach towel and scraps of featherlight fabric, and the thought was driving him wild. He swept his tongue deep in between her lips, thrusting and tasting the way he wanted to plunder other parts of her. In that moment, on that dock under the moonlight, he felt passion and longing like he’d never experienced before. Damn, I’m going to need a dip in a cold lake to shake this.
“Are you the deep-water person?” A shrill voice came out of the shadows from the beach, jolting Ross and Darling apart.
She jumped to the side of him, and he instinctively shoved her behind his body. Ross whipped his head toward the stranger. “Who the hell are you?” he barked, still feeling startled.
“No, you’re not from the deep water. You’re just a stranger. I’m David. I’m David.” The figure came a bit closer to the end of the dock, and now Ross could see that the voice belonged to a teenage boy. He squinted his eyes in the dim light and made out more details about David. That boy has lost too many balls in the high weeds, poor bastard. He had dark hair and thick glasses. He wore a loose T-shirt and jean shorts with old, worn sneakers. He clasped and unclasped his hands nervously before repeating himself. “I said, I’m David. I’m David, and you’re a stranger, you’re a stranger.”
“My name is Ross, and this here is Darling. Do you live nearby, David?” Ross questioned him gently, realizing that the boy was probably autistic or intellectually disabled and not some wandering psychopath who was going to hack them both to bits with a machete. Like his mom used to say about the wildlife, this boy was probably more nervous coming across them than they’d been surprised by him. Either way, Ross kept an eye on David. The boy kicked at the sand a few times with his old sneakers and glanced behind him toward the driveway.
“Yes, I’m David. I’m David. I live next door in the cottage. My dad does outdoor work. I help. I’m David,” the boy responded in his high-pitched voice seeming more at ease now.
Great, we’ve just met Boo Radley. David stepped onto the dock and walked within ten feet of them before giving a slight wave of his hand. Darling moved from behind Ross and waved back to the boy.
“I bet you’re Mr. Whitaker’s youngest boy. I used to live here every summer as a little girl, and now I’m back to stay, so it’s nice to meet one of my neighbors.” Darling smiled warmly at David before continuing, “It’s kind of late. Does your dad know where you are?”
“I’m David. I don’t go out in the water; there’s something in there. I’m David. My dad’s asleep on the couch again. He sleeps a lot.” David shook his head a few times.
“Oh, okay. So what’s this about something in the water?” Darling asked exactly what Ross was getting curious about himself.
“There’s a monster in the water. I’m David. There’s a secret that lives under the water, and someday it’ll come out. I’m David. I don’t like the water. That’s why it’s called Secret Lake, you know.” He looked down at his sneakers as if studying them.
“I’m pretty sure there are no monsters in the water. But, if you want to come fish off the dock or something during the day that would be okay, as long as you let someone know you are here. I don’t want your dad getting scared. It’s late now so we should all probably get to bed,” she offered.
Darling started walking back toward the house before Ross could even suggest picking up where they’d left off. Her stiff stride and squared shoulders signaled she wanted to be left alone, and he knew she was right to walk away from him. What the hell had he been thinking with, ’cause it sure as shit wasn’t his brain. She was practically a kid herself, couldn’t be more than twenty-one or so years old. With a shake of his head he followed David to the top of the driveway where he made sure the kid turned down a narrow gravel road and got to the porch of a small cottage. Once the kid had opened his door, Ross made his way back to the house and tiptoed up to his own room. He wasn’t surprised to see Beauty Belle had moved her dog bed upstairs—clever girl!—and settled in. Guess you’ll be the only woman looking for more of my company tonight. I sure hope you don’t snore, dog. He stripped out of his clothes and dropped into the creaking bed.
5. Now that's a great way to warm up! Before I let you go, I have to ask—what’s your next project. Is there another Love and Music book in the works?
I can’t say there won’t be one more Love and Music books but I did want to try something new. Recently I started a novel about an incubus who falls in love with a young veterinary technician. It will be my first paranormal and I expect it to be more of a novella. It is already red hot, lots of explicit sex including M/M so not one of my sweeter stories. I’m excited by the challenge.
Now that sounds intriguing. Since Tiffany’s book literally came out this week, she’s got a packed schedule (very much like her rock star heroes). For more about the book and author, just scroll down. As always, comments are much appreciated.
Darling Roberts is going back to the lake house her mother disappeared from thirteen years ago. She needs to decide to stay or sell. The locals believe the place cursed but her best friend thinks it would be a blast to spend the weekend there before heading to Europe. Madison is determined to set Darling up even if that means dragging a recently widowed rock and roll drummer to the scene of a murder.
Ross Daniels has a secret. He can’t stand the pitying looks well-wishers have given him since his wife’s accidental death. The European leg of the Becket tour can’t come soon enough. A weekend stay at a mutual friend’s lake house seems like a decent way to kill a couple of days before hopping a plane, at least until he spends some time with temptation herself.
Will they give in to passion before events at the lake house drive them apart?
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About T.D. Hassett
T.D. Hassett grew up reading the romance greats—Jackie Collins, Julie Garwood, and Judith McNaught. She was certain that life should be like a romance novel, with lots of passion, some incredible adventures, and a guaranteed happily ever after. She attended college in New England, earning a B.A. in History and an M.S. in Clinical Psychology before changing her mind again and studying education. Currently Ms. Hassett lives in Connecticut with her very patient husband and two young children. Her rambunctious family shares their home with three crazy cats and a darling golden retriever named Delilah. Her eccentric relatives and their quest to make her feel like the only normal nut in the family tree inspire her writing.
Visit her at http://tdhassett.wordpress.com -- She loves to hear from readers!