I’ve decided to change up these weekly snippets and go through my backlist, sharing the first meeting between the two main characters in each book. I’m going roughly in the order of first publication. It’s always fun for me to revisit the books and I hope it will be for you too! Or if you’ve never happened to read a certain book, maybe I can entice you into giving it a try.
PRIESTESS OF THE NILE was my first ever published book, in 2012. Even better, I sent it to Carina Press in response to an open call and was later told they typically only acquired about 3% of the manuscripts that came in over the transom (versus through an agent). Three years later, after self publishing a number of books, I was able to leave the day job and become a full time author! No, not from sales of this little paranormal romance but it was the start…
The excerpt, on the shores of the Nile, near an abandoned temple, 1550 BCE. Sobek the Crocodile God has been drawn to the sound of a beautiful song and has taken his human form.:
“Don’t be frightened, please. I mean you no harm.” He held his hands up, palms out, and smiled. “I heard your singing and it drew me here. I only wanted to give my thanks for the concert.”
She laid one hand on her graceful throat, toying with an amulet on a thong. “You startled me.” Poised to bolt, the girl appeared wary, probably planning an attempt to run past him.
“I apologize.” He kicked off his sandals and waded into the water at an angle from her. The net drifted lazily in a whirlpool; he reached out and caught it, lifting the tangled strands from the river.
“Oh, don’t! You’ll ruin your fine kilt, sir.” She came to him hastily and took the net from his hands. “The river runs muddy at this time of the year. Your servants will labor in vain to get the stains out.”
He glanced at his waist. Oh yes, I did choose to wear the pleated white kilt of a nobleman. He followed her to the shore as she splashed through tiny waves with her net. “Fortunately, I have no servants to worry with such things.”
While putting his sandals on, Bek frowned at the Nile crocodiles lying deceptively immobile on the opposite bank, then glanced at her. “You take great risks, walking into the river with those beasts nearby.” One of the animals twitched. Bek glared at it. The creature met his eyes for a second, then settled onto the sand.
“Oh, I’m not afraid. I’m protected.” She was busy folding the net and packing it into a compartment in the lid of her fish creel. She didn’t even spare a moment to consider the predators across the water.
He coughed to cover his instinctive laugh. “Protected? And exactly how are you warded against attack?”
She stood briskly, raised her chin and tugged an amulet free of her dress to show him. It was a small green stone crocodile hanging on a frayed black leather thong. “My great-grandmother was the last priestess of the temple on the bluff above.”
He indicated the amulet. “May I see it?”
The girl unlooped the cord from her neck and handed the necklace over. “Great-Grandmother told me the amulet was blessed by the Crocodile God himself and would protect me from his creatures.”
Bek chuckled, holding the tiny figurine in his large meaty hand. “Mighty protection indeed.” He momentarily closed the pendant in his fist, then tossed it to her with a slight bow. “Nonetheless, you shouldn’t take such chances. Crocodiles are crafty and fierce.”
PRIESTESS OF THE NILE (GODS OF EGYPT)
Drawn to his abandoned temple on the banks of the Nile by an enchanting song, Sobek the Crocodile god is even more captivated by the sight of the singer herself. Appearing to her as a man, he learns she is Merys, a descendant of his last priestess. Though filled with lust, Sobek believes Merys deserves to be more than just his mistress. But the rules that govern the Egyptian pantheon forbid anything beyond a physical joining of a Great One and a human.
Merys is attracted to the handsome stranger, who arouses passions in her that no man ever has. But with no dowry and no hope of ever leaving her village, she dares not dream of the future—or love.
Sobek takes every opportunity to visit Merys, taxing his resolve to leave her untouched. And when he saves her life, their mutual desire must be sated. But can a love between a human and an immortal survive the ultimate test of the gods?
HQN does retain the rights to the audiobook.
And my most recent release set in ancient Egypt: