What Makes a Good Book?

September 29, 2010

Easy – superb writing. Especially if the book is written by award winning, multi-published author Linda Sole. Have you read her work? If not, perhaps you know her as Anne Herries. Or Anne Ireland. All three pseudonyms amount to over 100 exciting novels that create romance in all its spendid forms.

Here’s a little from her hot, paranormal erotic romance;

DARK ANCIENT QUEEN
Anne Ireland
ISBN 978-1-935348-46-7
Amira Press

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BLURB:
Ally is a photographer and good at her job. She is in Paris when she hears that her sister has had an accident, and when she returns home Ally goes to her sister’s apartment. She mourns her death, but gradually she begins to realize that the car accident might not have been just an accident but something far more sinister. How long before she begins to understand that the beautiful Egyptian necklace sent to her sister may be the key to a larger mystery, and why does she feel as if her mind is being taken over by a dark ancient queen? Is what she is feeling for Jack Brendan, the new man in her life, real–or merely fantasy?

EXCERPT:
I woke feeling heavy-eyed and sluggish, and knew I had been dreaming again. I wasn’t sure exactly what had happened in my dream, except that, once again, it had been very sensual. I could almost feel the drugging effects of lovemaking in my body, and my mouth was swollen as if it had been kissed passionately. The dream had been vivid and erotic, because the man and woman in it had made love in ways I had never experienced. Just thinking about it as I dressed made my panties wet, and I was breathing hard. I shook my head as I looked in the mirror. My eyes were darker than usual and looked strange, as if they glowed with a black fire at the center. This wasn’t like me. I had a natural pleasure in making love with someone I liked a lot, but to be dreaming about sex this way wasn’t usual. I fought to put it out of my mind and think about the rest of the dream.

I was almost sure it had concerned a young Egyptian priest. The one I had seen before who had Simon’s face. He had been praying to his God for help because of some sin he had committed. I had no idea what he had done, what had happened to him, or whether his prayers were answered.

I shook myself out of my dreamy state and remembered that I had an appointment that morning. This business of the Egyptian necklace was more intriguing than I’d imagined.

“Mr. John Brendan is on his way up to your room, Miss Rowlinson,” the hotel receptionist’s voice came over the telephone. “He said that he has an appointment.”

“Yes, that’s fine.”

I had hardly replaced the receiver when there was a knock at my door. Opening it, I found myself staring at one of the most attractive men I’d ever seen. A tall man, he had dark brown hair, which he wore a little longer than was usual, and his eyes were almost black with a silver fleck in the irises. As he smiled, the silver seemed to intensify, which was very intriguing.

“Ally? It is Ally, isn’t it?”

“Yes, please come in.” I blushed as I realized I had been staring. “I’m glad to have a chance to speak to you privately because I want you to look at the necklace and make sure it hasn’t been damaged in any way since it left you.”

“I don’t think that’s necessary,” he said, and smiled rather wolfishly. “I would trust you implicitly, Ally.” His smile was inviting, drawing me to him immediately.

“I noticed there was some slight damage on at least three of the links.”

“I think that has always been there.” He accepted the package I gave him without attempting to open it.

“Where is it usually kept?”

“It has been lost, or perhaps I should say hidden, for the last hundred years. Since it was found, I’ve kept it in my safe at Brendan Lodge, that’s my country house. I should like to explain about the necklace. It might be as well to do it here, then we can relax and talk about other things.”

“Please,” I said, gesturing toward one of the two armchairs. “Shall I order coffee?”

“No, thank you. I would rather just talk, if you don’t mind?”

“Of course not. I’ve brought some of Elaine’s notes and some of the books she’s written on the early dynasties.”

“May I?” he asked, looking eager. “When I spoke to your sister, she was so interested and helpful. I had almost given up hope of ever finding out anything. Even if the necklace is a fake, I should like to know about the original. My ancestor certainly believed he had bought something rather special. And there are all the stories about it bringing bad luck.”

“That’s what interests me,” I said. “You mentioned some kind of a curse when we spoke last. You don’t really believe that, do you? It’s only a myth, though I know the ancient Egyptians were very much into magic. Elaine told me the people believed priests and magicians had all kinds of marvelous powers, like the ability to change themselves into animals and raise the dead.”

“I know a bit about that,” he agreed. “Since the necklace was found I’ve been going through family records and have read several references to magic. One of my ancestors had purchased a wonderful book on Egyptian magic. It was written in Eighteen Ninety-Nine by someone called E.A. Wallis Budge, and it deals almost entirely with the subject, telling stories of magicians who cut off the heads of animals and then brought them back to life.”

“Elaine refers to that particular book in one of hers. Some of the old knowledge has been updated or set aside in favor of modern research, but Elaine always said that the older books had a mysticism of their own. It is probably more fun to go along with the stories told in earlier books than to read the more accurate versions of today. Carbon dating often takes the magic out of myths.”

“Your sister sounds as if she was wonderful to know.” He looked upset. “I was hoping to meet her. I feel awful about what happened, almost guilty, as if the bad luck my family has encountered somehow rubbed off on her.”

“You shouldn’t feel anything of the kind. It was a drunken driver. I was angry at first, devastated. Now I just feel sad. I miss her terribly, but I’m trying to remember all the good things. Crying isn’t going to bring Elaine back, and she wouldn’t have wanted me to be miserable. She would have told me to pull myself together.”

“Yes.” He nodded in agreement. “There’s nothing we can do, is there?” For a moment, he looked into my eyes, and I almost swayed toward him. I wanted to feel his mouth on mine, his hands exploring my body, his smooth flesh joined with mine. I gave myself a mental shake. I had to stop this. Erotic dreams, and now I was practically panting to get laid by a man I had met only a few minutes earlier! I forced my mind back to the subject of my sister and the necklace.

“Except get on with our lives. Elaine would have wanted to do everything possible to help you research your necklace. She would have been disappointed if it was forgotten or abandoned because of what happened to her. I don’t have her knowledge or skills, but I have become very interested in Queen Amnut’s story. If I can be of any help at all . . .”

“Do you really mean that?” He looked at me eagerly. “I haven’t been able to raise much enthusiasm anywhere in this country. The only expert who seemed to have heard of the necklace was your sister. If we could go through her notes together . . .”

“I think we could do more than that,” I said, suddenly feeling a thrill of excitement. “Elaine had a lot of friends and contacts. I am sure if I telephoned around they would see what they could turn up in their files. I’ve already had several letters offering to help with any unfinished projects she might have left. I’ve turned over most of her things to experts from various museums, but yours appealed to me, and I should enjoy helping you.”

“I appreciate that, Ally,” he said with a look that set my spine tingling. “How long were you thinking of staying in England?”

“I’m not sure.” I hesitated. The way he looked at me set my libido on fire. “I’m probably going to talk to someone about an exhibition of my work, but then my time is my own.”

“Did you tell me you were a fashion photographer, or I did I hear that from someone else?”

“I may have mentioned it,” I said. “But you were going to tell me about this curse you feel has been hanging over your family.”

“It isn’t really a curse, though a letter I found among my great grandfather’s things did say . . .” He broke off and looked at me, a gleam in his eyes. “What are you doing this weekend? It probably sounds very forward of me, but it’s meant genuinely.”

“What?” I asked and laughed. “You are being very mysterious, Jack.”

“I was just wondering if you would like to visit Brendan Lodge, if you’re into old houses at all? It might interest you, and we could go over my stuff and yours and see if we can find any cross-references.”

“That sounds like fun.”

“But you need to think about it?” He quizzed me wickedly with his eyes. My mouth went dry, and I almost flung myself into his arms. What the hell was wrong with me? I could picture myself doing some of the things I’d seen the lovers do in my dream the previous night. “After all, I might be an axe murderer.”

“No, I don’t think so.” He was amazingly attractive when he had that wolfish gleam in his eyes, and I was enjoying myself. His hand brushed against my thigh and a hot flame ran through me. I saw the way his mouth loosened, and I licked my lips, imagining what it could do to different parts of my anatomy.

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To learn more about Linda Sole and all her marvelous books click here.

I’ll be back Friday. Until then…

Happy Writing!

Sloane Taylor
Sweet as Honey…Hotter than Hell

Sloane said @ 8:13 am | Friends

One Response to “What Makes a Good Book?”


  1. Melissa Bradley Says:

    Great excerpt! I can’t wait to add this to my collection.