I’m continuing my serious on highlighting various authors. This particular author has written over 200 books and has worked with several publishing companies. She was also in charge of two imprints at Booktrope. While she’s written everything from BDSM to LGBT, her favorites are psychological thrillers. Her upcoming release with Blushing Books just might scare you to death. Coming tomorrow! Say hello to…
CASSANDRE DAYNE – RAVAGED
When the final draft of erotic thriller author, Carrington Winters latest book turns up in the wrong hands, the mistake sets off a course of events, some involving a complete stranger. The manuscript detailing her darkest desires, as well as mirroring a series of real-life murders, she’s drawn to the mystery man, throwing her inhibitions aside.
Haunted by the murder of his wife, architect Jackson Devereaux finds Carrington’s manuscript and her hidden needs too tempting to resist. As they learn to trust and explore their growing desires, they begin a cat and mouse game of guarded rendezvous until a murderer seeks revenge, targeting their budding love.
As new and heinous murders rock Chicago, Carrington is forced to face a past she was determined to shelve in an ugly black box, but secrets and lies refuse to be denied. What secrets do they both hold that could tear them apart? Is their new romance strong enough to survive a murderer intent upon destroying their lives?
Do you hunger like I do?
Do you crave what only I can give you?
Come… be with me forever…
Carrington Winters snapped her head up and sighed before catching a glimpse of her notepad. She’d been doodling again. As she read the words twice she grimaced and looked down at the small trashcan nestled against the corner of her desk. She’d written the same passage at least six times in the last two nights. And every time in red ink. Hell, she didn’t even know she owned a red pen. “What’s wrong with me?” The answer was far too damning to think about. Push away the ugly thought. Yeah, that’ll do it. Growling, she shook her head. She was simply exhausted from her self-imposed brutal schedule. That’s all. Time to get back to business.
Brushing a damp strand of hair from her face, Carrington fingered her teacup and sighed. “It’s almost done. Almost?” Blurry eyed, she gazed at the screen and realized all the letters were starting to melt together. Groaning, she sat back in her chair and took a sip of the lukewarm tea. What she really wanted was a tall glass of merlot, but if she didn’t hit send on her manuscript tonight there would be hell to pay. Her editor had been patient. The wine could wait until she was absolutely done. The damn errand had cost her nearly two hours. She hated traffic and traffic jams and assholes that acted like the road belonged to them.
Chuckling, she knew she would probably kill off the bastards in her next book. Probably? She was in the business of killing creatively. The thought gave her a smile. Mixing erotic and mass murder was an interesting twist but one she loved. There was no doubt she was enjoying being able to murder some of her characters and not simply have them romp in bed. Brushing the tip of her finger back and forth across the seam of her mouth, she reread the last two pages then read them again. Dear God, she was bone tired but she had to finish. “You can do it.” Giving her computer the finger, she moaned. Sleep was highly overrated. Still, she loved the book and was thrilled with the outcome.
Her Hidden Desires, Carrington’s highly anticipated second in her gritty erotic crime thriller novels, was already pre-sold to the tune of thousands at every major e-book shelf internet store and failure to deliver wasn’t an option. The remaining brick and mortar stores had surprised her with the quantity of their orders—or shocked her editor anyway. The story was headline material. Centered around an incredible real-life event in her hometown of Portsmouth, Ohio almost three years before, Carrington knew this one could be a best seller.
Climbing to her feet, she walked to the bulletin board nestled in the back corner of her office and fingered the copious newspaper clippings pinned across the four by six corkboard. She’d read every article, every internet piece to garner the feel of the dark story. The murders had shut down the small town for two months and the killer had escaped. Shivering, she held her arms and wasn’t able to go down the road of wretched memories. She’d come too far to fall into the trap again. Her story was simply a way of giving a voice to the mutilated women and to allow them retribution within the pages of her novel. While completely fictional, with every scenario totally different than the actual chain of events, the haunting piece was certain to ruffle a few feathers. Carrington only hoped the publication wouldn’t drag her into hell.
In truth, changing from being what some called a fluffy erotic romance author to an erotic crime storyteller was a calculated risk and one she welcomed with open arms, hence the name change to C.W. Wynters for the planned series. Exhausted, Carrington sauntered toward the bank of windows, allowing her a spectacular view of the great lakes, and sighed as she palmed the glass. There was no doubt she loved Chicago but she remained homesick for her small town nestled at the banks of the Ohio River. Shaking her head, she gazed out at the star filled sky and smiled.
There was something so peaceful about working from home in the wee hours of the morning. More committed than ever, she headed back to her desk determined to finish the book, grab a glass of wine and ease into a sudsy bath. Then maybe when she finally fell into bed she could sleep without the vicious nightmares jolting her every other hour or so. Shivering, she exhaled and pushed the ugly thoughts away as she glanced at her watch. Thank God, she didn’t have any early appointments.
Staring at the last paragraph for what had to be a full five minutes, she rubbed her eyes then repeated the passage out loud, unsure if anything she’d typed for the last hour made any sense. “And as Sheila glared down at the killer, knife nestled in her bloody hand, she smiled. His vacant eyes shimmering in the moonlight remained mesmerizing. After all, she’d seen his domineering expression every time they’d made love. Her body shaking, she remembered all the lies and the promises. Hell, she’d been such a fool but no longer. She was different now and one who would never allow a man to take advantage of her again. Hearing the subtle plop, plop sound she finally tilted her head, enabling her to look directly at the slickened tile floor. She brushed the back of her hand over her swollen lips and caught a glimpse of the knife, glistening in the dim lighting and couldn’t help but smile. The pool of red blood reminded her she was very much alive and the monster, her monster was dead. Dropping the knife, Sheila held her hand in front of her face and began laughing as the realization hit her hard. She’d become the monster she’d so feared.”
“Not bad.” Rubbing her arms as a cold shiver trickled down her back, Carrington nodded in respect to her work. The ending was much grittier than the one before, her editor gave her some great advice. Then again, this was a far different ending than the real story. Finally satisfied, she saved the piece and opened up her email. As she searched for her editor’s email address she laughed. A new computer, a new operating system and a new email account meant no saved email addresses. Sadly, the switch had been a necessary evil since her entire life had been hacked and certain files corrupted while she’d taken a few days off.
Hissing, she grabbed her notebook full of her contacts and flipped to the page listing her editor. Blinking furiously, she chastised herself for wearing her contacts for so many long hours. Hell, she could barely see a damn thing. Jennifer Devereau had more than one email and only the favored authors had her private one. It seemed Carrington had come up in the world. The thought giving her a mischievous grin, she typed in the address, added the attachment and couldn’t help but tease. Here you go. As requested and I think you’ll find the haunting ending much more to your liking. And no more teasing about the kinky moments being what I want.
Carrington nodded in satisfaction and hit send. The sad thing was Jennifer had no idea just how much she craved every single one of the acts portrayed in the book. From bondage and the kinky clubs to acts of domination as explored by her heroine turned killer, Carrington had always enjoyed the kinkier sides of sex—if no other place than in her dark fantasies. The few experimentations had left her breathless and hungering for more but she wasn’t sure she could ever trust anyone that much again. Then again, with one call she could have exactly what she craved. No, she wasn’t going there. Period. Sighing, she turned off the large monitor and padded into the kitchen. Now she could relax and celebrate. What a shame no one was up at almost three in the morning.
Pouring a hefty glass of wine, she stood gazing at nothing but her mind was already reeling around book number three. Halfway done, she needed to put herself in the middle of the victim’s world and that might mean a trip to the location where the horrific crimes happened. She loved doing research and this one was centered around the seediest kink clubs patronized by the upper crust of society. Murder and sex knew no age or money brackets. Even Jennifer was excited about the additional aspects of the series. If she could keep up the pace putting out four of these a year, along with her other erotic pieces, she might make a name for herself by the end of 2018. Nibbling her bottom lip, she walked past the bulletin board and stood staring at the ugly pictures, bloody photographs of the real victims. How could the woman have endured so much pain? Swallowing hard, understanding wasn’t difficult.
Do you hunger like I do?
WHERE TO FIND CASSANDRE
Thank you so much for being here. Looks utterly terrifying!