Book Blitz & Excerpt: Playboy King + Giveaway

playboy king

Underworld Bride Trials 1: Playboy King
by Meg Xuemei X
Publication date: May 18th 2021
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy

She walks in on me fucking another woman for sport.
Her blue eyes burn like twin suns at daybreak when they train on me.
One sniff in her direction, and I know she’s mine.
Ice to my pyre.
Scenting its fated mate, my wolf beast awakens for the first time and roars with hellfire.
Heat sears through my veins. I’ve never been so aroused by any other female.
But Tessa Morrigan can’t be my queen.
She came too late.
I’ve started the Underworld Bride Trials. All the contestants must fight to the death until the last one stands by my side to claim the crown.

Loki, the hot new boss of Hell, is hosting a bachelorette contest. He thinks it’s funny to have a troop of women fighting to the death over him.
But he doesn’t expect to attract the most lethal assassin and a rejected queen to his selection game. I didn’t come to ride the playboy king’s sexy body or be Queen of the Underworld. I promised Lucifer his son’s head on a gold platter.
I’ve been burned before and vowed never to let a handsome, powerful man touch me again. Yet when Loki and I lay eyes upon each other, sizzling chemistry scorches us. Under his ruthless bad boy exterior hides another man, one that ignites flames inside my icy heart.

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playbooy king


“Care to join us, little bunny?” he offered with an enticing smile. “I won’t bite.”

“You expect me to believe that? With that big bad wolf smirk?” I said. “You must think you’re cute when you hide your fangs.”

“I was trying to help.” He grinned wider. “I’m a friendly guy. And I know you’re very much aroused. I know your type.”

“You know shit. That’s what you know and what you’ll get,” I sneered, my voice husky. “And you have no shame.”

He threw his head back and let out a snarky laugh. “What a mouth you have. I wonder what else it can do.”

He had the nerve to dip his eyes toward my lips.

“I can give you a list if you ask nicely next time,” I said sweetly. “This mouth can do wonders, but it’s also full of tiny fangs. I hope they catch your fancy.”

“My kind of fancy girl,” he purred again, then curiosity sparked in his heated eyes. “Why aren’t you afraid of me like the others?”

Afraid of him? I was a great assassin from another world and another time. I came to take his head! Lucifer had specific requirements.

I couldn’t help but giggle.

“Who are you?” he asked after a quiet moment. He must have sensed the surge of menace from me, though he didn’t appear alarmed.

The cocky bastard.

“Your worst nightmare, Demon King,” I said, heat and ice and hate swirling in my eyes all at once.

Author Bio:

Meg Xuemei X is a USA Today and Amazon Charts bestselling author of paranormal and fantasy romance. She finds it delightful to be around drop-dead gorgeous alpha males who are forever tormented by her feisty heroines, unseelie fae, dark vampires, menacing demigods, demon A-holes and fallen angels, fun shifters, and cunning witches.

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Book Blitz & Excerpt: The Hunter’s Heart + Giveaway

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The Hunter’s Heart, by Astrid Sharpe

Book 1 in the Love After Earth series

Word Count: 72,708
Book Length: SUPER NOVEL
Pages: 262



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Book Description

I thought my job sucked. But I’m about to be sold as a breeder to a seven-foot panther-man, so things can get worse…much worse.

Zensah is the reluctant leader of his nearing-extinction tribe. He’d thought he was paying the passage for willing settlers, not abducted females. If only he’d trusted his instincts and refused the trade. But then he would never have met Poppy, the brave human leader whose beautiful eyes burn with courage and defiance. She’s the only female he’s ever yearned to claim as his mate. But will she ever accept him?

When Poppy fights her captors, Zensah and his men help the humans escape, but find themselves stranded in the wild territories of his home planet. Determined to live independently, Poppy asks Zensah to teach her survival skills on their journey to her rendezvous with her fellow humans. She should hate him… Except she’s never felt so alive.

Reader advisory: This book contains scenes of abduction and some violence.



South East London, UK

It’s the end of another long, uneventful day.

I lower the security shutters at Frank’s Fries and the metal rolls down with a rusty shriek. Graffiti and dents are littered across its surface and when the mechanism sticks—as it always does—I give the key my signature wiggle to get it working again. I’m the only one Frank trusts with a key. I’m still paid the same as the other girls, though. ‘Times are tough.

It could be worse, I remind myself, as I look up at the stars. I can still see a few of them, despite the sickly glow of the estate. I suck in the frosty air and close my eyes, savoring the cold. After standing for hours over a deep fat fryer, it’s a nice change. Turning away from the fish and chip shop, I head home.

It’s times like these when I miss Mum the most. She was so ill for so long that everything else passed us by. There’ll be no one waiting for me back at the flat tonight, or any night, and the loneliness gets me down sometimes.

I walk through the alleyways with my head down and my collar up. Summercotes Estate is a 1970s concrete monstrosity. Three tower-blocks loom over the estate, flanked on all sides by low-rises that sprawl beneath like tentacles. A labyrinth of streets and alleyways. Frank says the architect who designed it called it ‘the future of social housing.

Streets in the skies!’ Frank had said with a snort, wiping meaty fingers on a greasy towel. ‘More like a crumbling rat maze!’

There’s a faint crunch to my right, and unease shivers down my spine. I look around me, but the street is empty. The surrounding flats are scattered with lights, but I don’t see anyone at the windows. I stride out into a pool of light from a streetlamp overhead, the entrance to my tower block in sight.

There’s a heavy thud behind me. Thick arms grab me around the waist, pulling me into the shadows. I’m dragged into the darkness, my boots scraping uselessly against the pavement. A cold, wet hand clamps over my mouth, choking my scream. It’s followed by a sharp prick of pain as a needle plunges into my neck. My muffled cries and desperate struggles are the only sounds I hear as the shadows close in, taking my world with them.

* * * *

I jolt awake, my heart pounding against my ribs like it’s about to burst out of my chest Alien-style. My eyelids are too heavy to open. I try to sit up, but I only manage to raise my head an inch off the ground. There’s a slight resistance against my neck, and my head flops back against hard metal. The surface is flat and smooth like a table. My ears are ringing, and my mind is sluggish.

The memory of being attacked hits me hard and fast. My whole body tenses.

I’m not lying on the pavement!

I must have been drugged. Panic grips me by the throat. My muscles contract painfully, coiled to run but without the energy to do more than tremble. What the fuck! Why would someone drug me? Who would abduct me? What have they done already and what else are they going to do? My stomach heaves.

Calm down. Think!

I focus on my breathing, gulping down air until the cramp in my limbs begins to ease and my heartbeat steadies. Apart from the grogginess and dull headache, I’m not in pain anywhere else. In fact, I’m still fully dressed. My skinny jeans and work shirt scratch against my skin. I still smell of batter, grease and vinegar. It’s familiar and comforting. The sick bastard who grabbed me hasn’t done anything…yet.

I’m not sure if I should be relieved—I guess it depends if he’s still here. I notice a wheezing and croaking sound to my right, but I don’t hear anything else.

Cracking open my eyes, I’m blinded by a yellow light above me and I turn my face to the side. It takes my eyes a second to adjust. Despite the piercing light above, the rest of the room is dim—either that or I’m still feeling the aftereffects of whatever crazy cocktail I’ve been injected with.

The shadows coalesce, forming shapes that I recognize. There’s a young woman laid out on a metal table beside me, presumably like the one I’m lying on. She’s wearing a party dress, jacket and heels. Her long blonde hair is a wild mess. Her pretty face is turned up toward the lamp above. But her eyes are closed as if she’s asleep. Glowing bars are strapped around her limbs and chest. I glance down at my own body. Yep, same glowing bands.

The lamp above the blonde descends, and it’s then I notice the figure standing beside her.

My limbs jerk and shiver against the restraints.

It’s a man-sized toad, pulling the lamp down with huge, webbed hands.

I squeeze my eyes shut.

It’s not real! It can’t be! It has to be a guy in a suit, right? Some sick prank?

Fuck! I’ve been abducted by Kermit!

A weird hysterical giggle chokes out of my mouth. I gasp for air, trying my best not to hyperventilate.

I peek again. This time my world tilts with dread and horror.

This isn’t a joke. The way it moves, the sweat on its skin, the flicker of intelligence and malice in its eyes…

It’s nothing like the fuzzy puppet, but it is frog-like, or toad-like I should say. This thing is freaky. It’s standing on two webbed feet, its thick muscular legs out of all proportion to its shorter arms. It’s tall, at least over six foot, and strong judging by the cords of muscles on its limbs. It wears a black boiler suit with a utility belt full of surgical needles and horrific blades. Its skin is dark green with luminous jade markings.

It looks wet, slimy and utterly repulsive.

However, its head is the worst thing of all. There’s no neck, only thick shoulders curving upward toward a huge bulbous mouth. Two bulging eyes, each one the size of my fist, sit on top of its flat nose. The wheezing and croaking are coming from the monster. As it inflates its throat and snaps its rubber lips, I realize it’s talking. I can hear another voice, but there’s a crackle to it like it’s coming from a loudspeaker.

My ears pop, and I’m dizzy for a moment. An eerie sensation washes over me, as if something inside my brain has switched on. Synapses fire and the sounds the monster makes aren’t wheezing croaks anymore, but words. The sounds have meaning and my brain understands them.

“I’m almost done. One more language download to go,” he says. Its voice is a deep baritone, so I presume it’s a ‘he’.

The monster peels back one of the blonde woman’s eyelids with a long silver tool. He pushes the lamp directly over her unfocused iris. She’s unconscious. Thank God.

I guess I was too, and I’m grateful for that when I see the light change to a bright blue laser. Her body jerks against the restraints in a terrible and involuntary way, as if she’s having a fit. It stops immediately as the light changes back to yellow.

“So, are they suitable?” asks a disembodied voice.

“They will breed well with Relicai,” says the monster, and I shiver at his words. I don’t want to ‘breed’. I want this nightmare to end. Especially if the ‘Relicai’ are anything like this thing. The monster returns the lamp to its original position and removes the tool from her eye, dropping it into a nearby dish with a clang.

She groans, her eyelids fluttering.

“They’re awake,” he says, looking past me. I turn my head to follow his gaze. Three more women are laid out on the other side of me in a row like in a morgue.

The blonde screams, a high-pitched hysterical sound.

The monster winces and stabs at a button on the lamp. Her scream is strangled as her whole body becomes rigid and her joints lock. Pain contorts her pretty features into a mask of horror.

“Please! Leave her alone! Stop!” I shout, but he takes no notice of me. His eyes are fixed on his victim, his head tilted to the side and a repugnant smile on his rubbery lips. Loud sobs echo through the room, and someone farther down tries to shush them. To my utter relief, the monster releases the blonde from her purgatory and she slumps, her breathing fast and shallow.

“Do. Not. Scream!” he snaps at the blonde, each word a clear threat to all of us. He looks over at me and grins. I can’t bear to look at him and turn my face away.

I make eye contact with the woman lying next to me. Her dark eyes are focused and penetrating, her bruised jaw and fists are clenched tight as silent tears roll down her cheeks.

The tables slowly rise up to a ninety-degree angle, like we’re about to go on a hellish rollercoaster ride. I didn’t cry at first. I was too shocked to cry. Now, I’m struggling to fight back the tears, determined to not give our abductors the satisfaction of seeing my fear.

I think back to the bullies on the estate. The best way to stay safe is always to keep out of their way. Or if you had to pass them, you had to act tough, give them no reason to pick on you. Then run as soon and as fast as you could.

The monster stands in front of us. The tables we were lying on are now upright vertical pillars, giving us the appearance of standing, when in fact we are still being held completely still by the glowing bands—a macabre butterfly display.

“Can you all understand me?” he asks. Bulging eyes snap between us with reptilian speed. I understand his words, but when I think of ‘yes’ in his language, there’s no way I can replicate the sounds he makes.

I nod dumbly instead, and he coughs up some more words that my brain quickly translates. “You may speak in your own language. I will understand.”

“What do you want from us?” chokes out the dark-haired woman beside me. Purple bruises are blooming on her neck and arms. She’d put up a fight. Except she’s still here with us. I look a little more closely at our captor and notice there are some discolorations on his arms and face. She got a few hits in before they took her down. Good for her. The knowledge that he can be hurt is comforting.

“You’ve been given a gift. A new life,” he says, sounding smug.

“Bullshit!” I snap, trying to be ‘tough Poppy’. “He’s going to breed us!”

“We are currently orbiting the Relicais’ home planet, where you will soon be delivered. The Relicai have very few females. You will be treasured amongst them,” he explains calmly, and I breathe a sigh of relief that he didn’t shock me as punishment for speaking out.

“We’re going to be sex slaves?” A brunette gasps in horror, her accent dripping with privilege. They’ve taken us from all over. Curious, I strain to get a better look at her. She’s draped in an oversized cashmere jumper, with perfect Dior makeup and Ugg boots. She sounds like one of those socialites from Chelsea.

The monster is getting impatient. His skin ripples like a chameleon’s as he shifts his splayed feet. “They’re a peaceful race. Your life will be better there.”

“Then how come you didn’t ask us to sign up? Be tributes or whatever.” When his slimy gaze focuses on me, I instantly regret drawing his attention for the second time. But if I don’t speak up to find out answers, who will?

The monster sighs as if he can’t be arsed with the human slave orientation he’s been dumped with. “We are Greenskins, a master race. Your permission is not required, or desired. I would suggest you do not fight against your situation.” He looks pointedly at the bruised lady beside me. She glares back, and I like her even more.

“Why me?” sobs the redhead to no one in particular. She’s eastern European by her accent.

The Greenskin doesn’t seem to understand rhetorical questions. “We used specific criteria—age, health and location, as well as the fact that you will not be missed.”

Harsh but fair. “Fuck you,” I grumble.

“No, thank you,” replies the Greenskin with a slow blink in my direction, and my stomach lurches. I gulp back the hot bile in my throat. Best be careful what I say in future.

“I’ll be missed!” cries the redhead. “You’ve got the wrong person! Take me back! I’ll be missed.” She falls back into hysterical sobbing, and tears burn the backs of my eyes.

“No, Anna, you will not.” The Greenskin laughs, or at least that’s what I think it is. “The Relicai will arrive soon, and you will be released for the exchange. If I were you, I would make a good impression. Life on the Relicai home world is hard. You will need to please them. Your future happiness depends upon it.” He leaves the room without a backward glance.

I look at the women around me. They look as horrified and desperate as I feel. I try to think of something to comfort the sobbing Anna. But honestly, I can’t think of anything that might help. ‘At least you’ve got your health’, and all the other crap I heard after Mum died doesn’t quite cut it right now.

I clear my throat and try to compose myself. I don’t sound like I’m about to freak out, which is a clear win in this current situation. I take a deep breath, resolving to stay strong no matter what—somebody has to. When Mum was dying I managed to take care of everything for years. I can do this! “I’m Poppy.”

There’s silence for a moment, and the fighter beside me speaks up, her voice a brittle whisper. “Harpreet.”

“Ceri,” says the blonde, her Welsh accent awash with tears.

“Louisa,” adds the brunette.

Anna cries some more, and I don’t blame her.

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About the Author

Astrid Sharpe

I’ve had a long love affair with all genres of romance since I first picked up my mum’s fabulous Fabio books as a teenager. I love to create stories and characters that are out of this world, and I hope you enjoy reading them. I live in East London with my husband, two children and two cats, when I’m not writing I pour pints at my local theatre.


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Book Blitz Breathe & Excerpt: Breathe + Giveaway



Book Title: BREATHE (London Love book 1)

Author: Sophia Soames

Publisher: Self-published

Cover Artist: Christina Stern

Release Date: May 15, 2021

Genre: Contemporary M/M Romance

Trope: Hurt/Comfort

Themes: Adult entertainment industry, Heartbreak, Found family

Heat Rating: 4 flames

Length:  108 758 words/ 300pages

It is a standalone story.

It is Book 1 in the London Love series.

A companion novella, EXHALE, will be released in May as part of the Love is All 4 anthology. 

Trigger warning/Author note:  This book contains an off-page description of a sexual assault.

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Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

Universal Link  |   Amazon US  |   Amazon UK


Meet Ryan, aka, Joey Hole, disgraced former adult entertainer with more issues than he can keep track of. His boyfriend left him for an Instagram twink with 150K followers, his Mum wants him out of her spare room and then there’s that idiot at college who just won’t take no for an answer.

Meet Luke. He was once the rich kid who’d just been gifted his first car, and now he doesn’t even own a bike. He’s also slumming it in a house full of ungrateful siblings and his first trip to the Food-bank gave him some goddamn emotional scars. Life is getting better though, and he’s acing it at college, as well as making some brilliant new friends. Well except for that stuck up twatwaffle Ryan who won’t talk to him and refuses to like his brilliant social media posts….

The first book in the new London Series. This series will follow the ups and downs of three couples living extraordinary ordinary London lives.

My headphones blasted music as I walked down the college corridors towards the on-site gym, where our first session today would cover gentle workouts for the older generation, a topic I found intriguing. I liked the idea of giving something back. Not that I had any contact with any of my grandparents. All except for my maternal grandfather had long departed, and I wasn’t even sure he still lived in the country. Family could be an unwelcome obligation, but if there was one thing I would fight for to the death, it was that Olive would never be sent to some goddamn boarding school and would never, fucking ever be looked after by our parents again. That was like…fuck. I was sweating just imagining the horror my little sister would go through. In any circumstance, it would never happen. She had us in her corner now, and we would bloody protect her to the end of the earth.

The gym was busy as always, a few people huddled over by the water dispenser, and there was muffled giggling coming through from the weights room, where I could see all the girls in our class bent over staring at the phone in Danielle’s hand. Well, all except Bridget, who stormed out and barged past me without saying hello.

“What did you do to Bridget?” I asked, squeezing down on the last remaining place on the bench and huffing in disappointment when Danielle pressed the screen against her chest and glared at me like I’d interrupted something private. I probably had, but as always, I didn’t have the sense to care.

“You don’t want to see this,” she said, an odd mix of excited and horrified.

“Why? Is it porn or something?” I didn’t know why I said these things, but Inez looked like she was about to cry.

The other girl, whose name I momentarily couldn’t remember, whispered, “Go on, show him.”

It was a shitty thing to do. A shitty thing to show any human being. Danielle shoved her phone in my face, and right there, filling the entire screen, someone’s arse was being pounded by one of the thickest dicks I’d ever seen. The sound was off, but from the way the owner of the arse was shaking, it must have bloody hurt. Not that the guy attached to the dick seemed to care, letting his thing slide in and out of the slick hole, which gaped and then clenched before the guy brutally shoved his dick back in.

They were two guys, that was clear. A sculpted stomach came into view as the bloke on the bottom was flipped over, and a curved dick bounced against his stomach.

I realised I was blushing, my face flaming in embarrassment. Not for me, because…it was porn. Gay porn, admittedly, but still porn. I really wasn’t into this kind of stuff in public, and anyway, who watched porn with a bunch of girls?

“Put that shit away before Mr Greenwood comes in and has you thrown out. For fuck’s sake, Danielle!”

“You need to watch it to the end,” she insisted, thrusting the phone back in my face.

“I really don’t want to.” I got up to leave, but Inez grabbed my arm and pushed me back down.

“You should know,” she said, turning even paler. “I don’t agree with Danielle showing it, but someone needs to tell him.”

“Tell me what?”

“No, not you. Someone needs to talk to Ryan.”

“For fuck’s sake.” I was in no way a worldly guy, but seriously?

“Ladies, I’m sure as a gay man, Ryan knows where to find gay porn if he feels the need. I’m not going to go tell him that you girls found gay porn on the big ugly web and feel the need to warn him there are men out there who want to stick their dick up his arse.”

“Who wants to stick their dick up my arse?”

That was Ryan, thank God, because I didn’t want to explain this shit on my own.

“The girls found porn on the web, and it’s done something to their brains.”

I was expecting him to laugh, but instead, he turned around and left the room.

“What’s going on?” I called after him as Danielle once again thrust the phone back in my face.

And on the screen was none other than Ryan, sticking his tongue out with a cheeky wink before swallowing some guy’s dick down his throat.

About the Author 

Sophia Soames should be old enough to know better but has barely grown up. She has been known to fangirl over TV shows, has fallen in and out of love with more popstars than she dares to remember, and has a ridiculously high-flying (un-)glamourous real-life job.

Her long-suffering husband just laughs at her antics. Their children are feral. The Au Pair just sighs.

She lives in a creaky old house in rural London, although her heart is still in Scandinavia.

Discovering that the stories in her head make sense when written down has been part of the most hilarious midlife crisis ever, and she hopes it may long continue.

Find me on social media @sophiasoames on all platforms

Christina Stern is a Russian based artist. Quick sketches and portraits drawn in pencil are what she likes to do the most. Her work can be found on @christinastern on Instagram

Aurelia Morris is a cover artist, photographer, Photoshop wiz and eternal fangirl. She works in many mediums under more aliases that she can keep track of.


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