It’s a pleasure to once again be a part of a blog tour for a Roni Loren new release! OFF THE CLOCK is the first in a new series which makes it doubly exciting! I have information about the book, my review- since, of course, I devoured it already- a steamy excerpt (all the better to tempt you with) and a chance to win a fun prize picked by Roni herself.
So, check out the goodies below and don’t forget to enter to win!
About the Author
Roni wrote her first romance novel at age fifteen when she discovered writing about boys was way easier than actually talking to them. Since then, her flirting skills haven’t improved, but she likes to think her storytelling ability has. After earning a master’s degree in social work from LSU, she worked in a mental health hospital, counseled birthmothers as an adoption coordinator, and did management recruiting in her PJs. But she always returned to writing.
Though she’ll forever be a New Orleans girl at heart, she now lives in Dallas with her husband and son. If she’s not working on her latest sexy story, you can find her cooking, watching reality television, or picking up another hobby she doesn’t need–in other words, procrastinating like a boss. She is a former RITA award nominee and is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author.
Connect with Roni via the following ways:
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Roni is giving away this awesome gift to a lucky winner: an Out of Print Library Card Tote Bag filled with Books (US/Canada shipping ONLY). Enter to win below and good luck!
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Earlier this year, Roni announced that she’d be starting a new series, running concurrently with the Loving on the Edge series. This would still be sensual but not based in BDSM like her first series. As someone who typically has to read the kink between her fingers, I was wildly excited and anticipating this new series, specifically from an author I just really enjoy reading.
The first novel in this new series didn’t disappoint at all. Marin is a typical Loren heroine– sometimes her strengths are her flaws, she’s usually managing everyone else’s life well except her own and she usually has a little bit of growth coming. Enter a hero–Dr. Donovan West– who needs to heal, himself and add some animal magnetism and unavoidable attraction between the two and bing bang boom, you’ve got yourself a page turning erotic romance!
Marin and Dr. West (after a short, sexy tryst six years in the past) are thrown together as co-therapists at The Grove, a New Orleans base VIP treatment center where Marin and Donovan treat all manner of patients who need peace and privacy. Typically these patients are famous people who need to deal with their demons before those demons destroy their careers.
I must admit to caring more about getting to know these characters and their stories as well as peripheral characters more than the sexual escapades between them. That’s not to say the sex scenes aren’t hot… they practically melt the page. It’s just that this author crafts characters and stories so well that I’m always so entirely more interested in the people than the hanky panky.
Marin is a character that I identified with heavily… there were a couple of scenes that brought a tear to my eye, specifically a part about playing it safe and how that’s natural but how there’s a huge price to pay for that– ending up alone, with hangups and irrational fears. Everything has a price and everyone wants to be safe, but how much are you willing to pay to stay in that safe place?
This book has brought a lot of issues I deal with to the surface. I find that so many books become therapy for me and I always find a little bit of myself in every Loren heroine.
Donovan is also an extremely sympathetic character, and I think one of Loren’s most deeply hurt and flawed heroes that I can remember– though most if not all of her heroes have great backstories that built them into the men they’ve become. The problem is that though Donovan has achieved great professional success, he hasn’t progressed in his personal life whatsoever. His journey from ‘who hurt you’ to a man on his way to good emotional health is part of the most compelling crux of this story.
In all? Smashing debut of the new series! I am so looking forward to more stories from The Grove!
An excerpt of this novel is posted below! Slightly Rated R!
Marin moaned when he parted her lips to deepen the kiss, and a swift rush of arousal flooded her, making the neglected parts of her throb and ache. His tongue stroked hers, teasing with a rhythm she could only imagine in other places. Her nipples became hard points, straining for touch, and her sex pulsed between her thighs. She wanted to rub herself on him like a cat, find relief. He seemed ready to oblige. Donovan
backed her into the wall, his body aligning with hers and his hand sliding down to knead her hip like he was barely restraining himself from tearing off her clothes. Heat against heat, hardness growing against her belly. She was dying. She needed this. God, did she need this.
But a swift knock sounded behind him, shattering the protected moment and blasting through her lust-drunk brain. Marin gasped, and Donovan jumped back and dropped his hands to his sides like she had burned him.
The door swung open, and Ysa poked her head in. “Hey, guys I—” Her words faded as her gaze bounced between them. “Uh, sorry, didn’t mean to interrupt.”
Poker face. Poker face. Poker face. Marin pushed off the wall and fought hard to look like everything was fine even though her cheeks were burning hot, her lips slick, and her body pulsing in time with her frantic heartbeat. She had a feeling she was failing miserably at pulling it off. They may as well have a neon sign above their heads that read In Flagrante Delicto.
Donovan, on the other hand, owner of the world’s most impenetrable therapist mask, looked cool and unaffected as he tucked his hands in his pockets, presumably to hide his burgeoning hard-on, and looked at Ysa. “Not interrupting. What’s up?”
Ysa glanced between the two of them again but kept her thoughts to herself. “Just wanted to let you know your nine-thirty is here.”
Marin gave her a quick, tight smile. “Thanks. We’re on our way.”
Ysa gave them one last questioning look and then shook her head and disappeared back out into the hallway. When the door shut, Marin put her hands over her face and groaned. “Son of a bitch. Now there’s more grist for Dr. McCray’s rumor mill. I cannot believe I just did that. Here. With you.”
Donovan stepped into her space again and took her wrists in his hands, gently tugging them away from her face. “Take a breath. It’s okay. Ysa didn’t see anything. And even if she figured it out, she would never say anything to anyone.”
But Marin hardly heard any of it with her head spinning and anxiety rushing through her. “God, how could I be so stupid? I don’t know what I was thinking. I just—”
“It’s not your fault, Marin,” he said, his voice gentle. “I crossed the line first.” His mouth hitched up. “Plus, I should know not to stand that close to a woman who spent all night watching porn.”
A sharp laugh burst out of her, her nerves bubbling up and out. “Right. I’m bound to grab anyone within reach to use for my lecherous purposes.”
Donovan looked down at her for a long second, some of that heat from earlier returning, burning her slowly. His hands flexed around her wrists. “I wouldn’t mind being used by you, Marin.”
Her stomach dipped.
“I didn’t make the offer last night because it would’ve been a selfish move. And a risk. But I want you in my bed. Know that. It’s not altruistic. Or professional. And it’s out of line.” His voice was like water gliding along her skin—smooth, clear, quietly powerful.
He lifted her hand and flattened it against his chest over the inner pocket of his jacket. “But if you decide you might want that anyway, know there isn’t a thing on this list that I wouldn’t love to check off for you. Completely and thoroughly. I could make you shameless, Rush.”
She could barely hear him over the roaring sound in her ears. How the hell was she supposed to form words after that?
He released her hands and stepped back but kept her pinned beneath that white-hot gaze. “So if you ever need me . . . off the clock, you just have to ask. And if you want me to go to hell and steer clear, that’s all you’ve got to say, too. It’s your call.”
Everything inside her was buzzing. Her mind had gotten hung up on the words completely and thoroughly. He wasn’t going to pressure her, but the look in his eye said he could rock her celibate world right off its fucking axis. The temptation was like a bright, glittering thing blurring her vision.
But taking that offer would come with a price. Keeping things secret. The risk of being caught. And there would be a time limit. He didn’t do relationships. This would just be sex.
Really hot, really intense sex.