A very warm welcome to Bella J who is visiting to let us see her brand new cover revealed in all its gorgeous glory.
Come and tell us a little about your adventure in getting this far.
Oh boy, the last couple of months have been both exciting and hectic. But I have to admit… I love every minute of it!
I really didn’t think my work would ever get published. Not because I think my writing isn’t any good – but because I know that there are thousands – millions – of brilliant writers out there who write the most amazing stories. And the romance genre? Wow, there are millions of romance novels out there, so the competition is real tight. But what do you know… in two months’ time my work is going to be out there for the world to see, and I am stoked.
Ever since I signed my first contract back in June, this publishing process has literally taken over my life! But in a good way – for me. I think my poor husband is so tired of hearing me blabber about everything related to my book; he’s desperate for me to talk about anything else – even if it meant me talking to him about shoes and handbags, or even having a discussion as to why Jamie Dornan is the perfect Christian Grey. Any other topic would probably work for him right about now.
And then there’s my best friend – I think she’s starting to mentally picture me with a zipper mouth so that she can just shut me the hell up whenever I start talking about my book. And please note that she is also my beta reader, so she has been hearing about this novel nonstop for the last eleven months.
Poor woman – bless her.
But I just can’t help it. I want to shout it from the rooftops, and drive around with a huge sign on my back window saying ‘I WROTE A BOOK AND IT’S BEING PUBLISHED. ANYTHING EXCITING HAPPEN TO YOU LATELY?’
I’ve been writing for years, and to finally have my name – or my pen name – out there is a dream come true.
I started working on Resplendent Ruin in November 2014, and completed it in May this year. Yes, it was a long process, but being a mother of two, having a full time job in the wine industry AND trying to write a novel… phew, I think there are a lot of women out there who would agree that it’s quite a challenge to juggle it all. But then again, I managed to finish the 2nd book of the Resplendence series within two months – I have no idea how that happened.
Anyway, here it is peeps, the cover that had me jumping on my husband and screaming like a crazy person when I first saw it. I hope you like it as much as I do…
Oh who am I kidding? I don’t just like it… I LOVE IT!!
Juliette Mason had it all—the perfect job, the perfect home, the perfect fiancé. She lived the perfect life. Until everything started to slowly fall apart.
Daniel, her attractive and success-driven fiancé, was the love of her life. For years she wanted nothing more than to finally walk down the aisle, to be Mrs. Daniel Clarke. But as time went by, the cracks in their relationship started to come to the surface, and Juliette found herself in a place she never imagined she would be. It was a place where she started to question everything about her life and her dreams, a place where nothing about her life made sense anymore—a place where she found Knox Taylor.
Knox didn’t count on falling in love. In fact, Knox didn’t count on anything really. He was blissfully happy living a fast life of reckless behavior, impulsive decisions, and beautiful women. He lived the perfect life of a flourishing bachelor—but then she happened.
“Why are you in my room?”
Juliette yelped and jumped at the same time. She dropped the cuff which was still clutched in her hand, and the sound echoed through the room as it clashed against the bedpost.
“Oh my God,” she breathed, holding her hand against her chest. Her heart was beating a hundred miles an hour, and she could feel all the blood drain from her body, rushing to her burning cheeks.
“Why are you in my room?” His voice was right behind her now, and she swallowed hard. Not wanting to turn around and let him see the embarrassment on her face, she kept her back to him.
“I’m sorry,” she muttered and tried to scurry past him. But before she was able to make a getaway, he reached out and grabbed her wrist. A shockwave of extreme undiluted need shot up from his touch, through her spine, straight to her core. Holy crap, she couldn’t breathe.
His stare burned through her skin and her body felt like it was on fire. Startled by what she felt, she looked up at him.
His midnight hair was damp and unruly as ever, and his face slightly flushed.
There was no stopping her gaze from moving down.
“I, um…I…” She couldn’t think of a single thing to say, not one damn thing as she stared at his incredibly well-built, unbelievably toned chest with the faint dusting of black chest hair.
Down, down, down—like Alice in the rabbit hole—her attention went, until they reached the very prominent, very masculine V. Or what Lexi would call it, the “penis-pointer.”—Oh no, she didn’t? Did she just think about his…
Yes. Yes, she did.
“Up here, sweetheart,” he said, still clutching her wrist.
Her gaze shot up, another wave of embarrassment making its way to her already burning face. He had that damn arrogant grin he wore so well on his face. He knew the effect he had on her. He knew every dirty little thought that flashed through her mind during the last five seconds. Smug bastard!
She jerked her arm out of his hold and her skin instantly mourned the loss. “I just came to return your jacket.” It was a miracle that she didn’t stutter since she couldn’t form a single sentence in her head.
His arm dropped to his side and her eyes followed the movement. That’s when she noticed the white towel wrapped around his waist. For a split second the thought of what was behind that flimsy white towel made her thighs clench and her stomach tighten.
He cocked a brow. “And you needed to put it in my room?”
“Well,” she searched for words, or an explanation, or something, “I just wanted to make sure you got it back safely.” Well, I certainly aced that explanation.
He looked at her suspiciously, and then his eyes went dark. “Whatever. You can leave now.” He dismissed her.
Oh hell no!
She gave a step forward. “Do you think that women actually find this whole jackass approach of yours attractive?” she spat out.
“I don’t know, do you?”
Struggling—yet again—to think on her feet, she just stared at him, completely blank. Nice.
He gave a step toward her, traces of the darkness in his eyes she saw a second ago gone. What she could only interpret as a sexy-as-hell grin crossed his face, showing off his ridiculously distracting dimples.
I want to trace those dimples with my tongue… Stop!
All of a sudden the entire atmosphere between them changed from awkward, to angry, to—electrifying. Her skin tingled, and she was suddenly painfully aware that except for the flimsy towel wrapped around his waist, he was completely and utterly naked.
With somewhat furrowed brows and the corners of his mouth pulled back just enough for her to wonder if he was about to smile or frown, he slowly started toward her. With each step he took, she instinctively gave one step back. This was probably what trapped prey felt like being stalked by a wild, hungry predator. Adrenalin would pump through the prey’s veins as it prepared to run for its life or brace itself for impact. The only difference was that the adrenalin pumping through her veins was for an entirely different reason than wanting to escape her predator. In fact, she wanted to run to the predator.
Stupid, stupid prey!
She inhaled sharply when her back hit the wall. Her body started to shiver as he leaned into her. Heat burned through her skin while her heart beat wildly inside of her chest.
He placed his hands flush against the wall just above her shoulders and looked down at her, his eyes a frenzy of heat and seduction. Every inch of her body felt electrified, like it was leaning over the edge of unadulterated lust in search of ecstasy.
He cocked his head to the side and he stared at the soft, exposed skin of her neck. She was pretty sure he could have seen the vein pulsating to the rhythm of her heart. She felt completely intoxicated by the way he moved, the way he smelled, and the way it felt having him so close up against her. She closed her eyes and felt him slowly trace the edge of his nose up her neck, all along her jaw until she could feel his lips brush against her ear.
“Tell me, Jules,” he whispered, the words coated with sheer unmistakable allure.
“Tell you what?” she asked dazed. She could not remember what the hell they were talking about.
He focused all his attention on her lips while he kept his mouth mere inches from hers. It was complete agony having his lips so close to hers and not being able to feel it.
“Do you find my jackass approach attractive?”
His warm breath waved over her wet lips and an inferno of flames erupted inside of her, leaving her incapable of thinking about anything else than what his lips would feel like pressed firmly against hers.
Bella J lives in Cape Town, South Africa, with her husband, two kids, and a Chihuahua. Her love for writing started in eighth grade when she received her first writing assignment—which she flunked. But the positive side of her failure—her newly-found passion for writing. The negative side—now she’s completely spaced out half of the time living in her little pretend world of romance, love, and insanely hot heroes.
Resplendent Ruin, Resplendence Book #1, will be released on November 16th 2015, and is her first published novel. Check in on www.lsbooks.com regularly for pre-order info.