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Saturday, July 30, 2011
Jianne Carlo - The Dragon Slayer
My it was fun writing The Dragon Slayer. The hero, Ruard, is such a smitten bad boy! I loved rustling his feathers, so to speak :)
The Dragon Slayer Blurb:
To save her sister, can Catriona slay the Dragon Slayer?
Ruard, the Viking warrior known as The Dragon Slayer, has no great hopes for the wife he’s to take as the lord of Dunsmuir Castle, so long as she’s a biddable wife, with all her teeth, who doesn’t drool—a plain, humble woman. He has no use for the flame-haired nymph with breasts as ripe as melons and whose supple hips beckon a man’s hands. Nor for a maiden with a stubborn chin and flashing eyes that speak of naught but trouble.
Catriona hopes for a husband ‘twill be easy to poison. Lord Ulfric holds her sister captive and demands Catriona do his bidding: poison his Viking rival, the man they call the Dragon Slayer. Catriona hopes for a cruel warrior, a man easy to hate, not this Thor god come to life with golden hair, sky blue eyes, and a laughing smile. Her sister’s life depends on it, but how can she slay this Ruard, her new husband, who makes her heart pound with joy?
Oh my good Lord above! Did I adore this book? Yes, I did. I haven’t read as far back in time as the Vikings, and who knew how sexy they could be? I’m sincere in saying here that I loved Ruard. He was so sexy, so masculine, so absolutely yum-yum that every time he was in a scene I got all hyper. He made me squirm, dream, and get more than hot under the collar. What a fine specimen of hunkness he is. God, these two just come to life on the page, and I was fascinated by the Viking life, the wording, everything about the book. It’s such a refreshing read when you learn something new, see things in your head you’ve never seen before, and come to understand just how they lived back then. Miz Love Loves Books Reviews
Excerpt - The Dragon Slayer:
Catriona the Pure might have been Catriona the Proud, for she had stood tall and unflinching during the ceremony. Only Ruard had felt her fingers trembling and heard the hitch in her breathing when her tongue tangled the vows.
Njal had taken the seat on his left and Ulfric the one adjacent.
“I see not why Ulfric need be seated at the high table. He is but a third son.”
“Must I remind you I am Njal the Peacemaker? ’Tis your wish for Ulfric to depart on the morn, no?”
Ruard folded his arms and glared at this brother.
“Think you he would not tarry for spite if offered any excuse?”
Letting out a long sigh, Ruard rolled his eyes. “I bow to the wisdom of Cnut’s peacemaker.”
“I like not this proclamation sealed by King Máel Coluim.” Njal broke a burnt loaf in two. “What if Catriona is not a maid?”
Ruard’s teeth snapped together. “What of it?”
“The laws of this land are not familiar to me.”
Ruard’s gaze swept the room. The crowd grew louder with each downed mug. ’Twas not likely he could avoid the whole hall crowding the bedding chamber.
“If your lady is no maiden, the lands may be forfeit.”
“A quick cut of my arm, a bloody sheet.”
“Nay. We know not the local custom. Mayhap the women cleanse her after?” Njal shook his head. “Mayhap Ulfric and the men check your flesh for a cut?”
“Many a bride has been saved by the blood of a pig or fowl.”
“I will see to it,” Njal promised.
Ruard did not intend to allow any man to ogle Catriona’s bountiful breasts, or strain to see if the flame curls on her head matched those between her legs. His glance dropped to her lap as if he could discern the answer to that question by staring long and hard at her clothed mound.
She sat motionless, her hands folded at her waist, and made no attempt to use her eating knife.
Gifting him with an honest smile, one of the two she had bestowed this eve, she whispered, “I await the apples my lord.”
* * *
The women had stripped off her clothes, brushed her hair till her scalp tingled, and settled her on the mattress under the sheets. The cold linen sent shivers up her spine, gooseflesh popped on her arms, and Catriona crushed the sheets between her fingers and bit her lip so hard she tasted blood. She looked at the green canopy covering the bed, but her eyes refused to focus. The other women had tried to stop her from drawing the curtains around the bed, but one of the local noblewomen, a Lady Carlton, had come to Catriona’s aid.
Praying for the strength to survive the consummation, she near jumped off the bed when a din of shouts, whistles, and thumps rent the murmur of female conversation. She heard a woman attest to the lord’s virility. How did the witch know her husband had seed aplenty? Before she had time to ponder the source of the woman’s knowledge, the curtains parted and her husband fell onto the mattress.
Ruard’s leg was brown against the whiteness of the sheets. Catriona stared at his sinewy thighs, mesmerized when the ropey muscles bunched. Someone drew the curtains lining her side of the bed apart. Ruard covered her body with his, reached one arm to set the velvet back in place, and shouted, “Njal, to me.”
Catriona heard his brother’s voice, but Njal spoke Norse and she didn’t understand the commands he roared.
She flinched when gnarled fingers snaked through the curtains and pinched her forearm.
Ruard growled, grabbed the hand, and twisted the bony wrist until the man screamed in agony.
A weight sank onto her chest, she couldn’t draw in enough air, and panic bubbled up her clogged throat. She struggled, squirming and wriggling and trying to dislodge the heaviness depriving her of precious breaths.
“Desist, Catriona. To me, look to me.”
Ruard grabbed her shoulders and gave her a little shake.
“Ride her hard!”
“Prick her well!”
I cannot do this. I cannot.
“You can. You will. Do not listen to them. Look to me.” His lips moved on her ear and then he drew back, his gaze trapping hers.
I am speaking my thoughts? ’Tis the magik?
“Are you a maid?”
“Suckle those tits!”
“Bite her buds!”
Whistles punctuated the men’s raised voices. Stomping and cheering broke out and one man broke into song, then another, and another.
Ruard shook her again. “Look to me, lady.”
All thoughts whirled like snow in a blizzard and she couldn’t get away from his searing stare. He smelled of pine forest and smoke, and his hands threw out the heat of a roaring blaze where their flesh connected. He squeezed her shoulders. “Catriona.
Are you a maiden?”
She stared at his fingers, so brown against her pale skin. His forearms were slightly furred and tightly muscled with not an ounce of spare flesh. The outline of a fire-spewing dragon was drawn on the cusp of his shoulder. This creature, this man they called the Dragon Slayer, would protect her. The thought formed with such surety
Catriona ceased struggling.
Buy Links: Amazon ARe B&N Etopia
Genre: Erotic Historical m/f
Hope you enjoy,