Publisher: Ellora’s Cave
Number of pages: 77
Word Count: 23,500
Cover Artist: Syneca
Seven tears cast upon the water summon the selkie, summon seal across the ocean, summon man from beast—liquid keys to break the curse. Freed one night every seven years, Ronin is doomed to repeat that cycle into eternity. Unless he can find a woman powerful enough to resist a selkie’s irresistible pheromones and sex magick.
Maille believes she lost reality between Maine and New Mexico. Between where she is now and where she should be. She believes in facts, not magick. But facts can’t explain how she wound up naked on a beach with the sexiest man she’s ever laid eyes on. Or how she knows in her bones that losing herself in the passion Ronin offers is a path to disaster.
It’s going to be a long, hot, wet night. Caught between sex magick and a sexy selkie, disaster is inevitable for Maille. To break the enchantment she has to rely on the oldest magick of all—the power of love-drenched hearts.
Book Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yO2moGX-IhU
Copyright © NARA MALONE, 2013
All Rights Reserved, Ellora's Cave Publishing, Inc.
A piercing cry rose above the thunder of surf. Human? A seal could sound so human it was hard to tell the difference. Whichever, Maille recognized it as a wail of mortal distress. She couldn’t say how she understood that, no more than she could say how she wound up on the beach. One fact she was certain of—she couldn’t ignore it.
Without thought for consequences she plunged into the surf, diving under swells, power-stroking through roiling water.
Once past the breakers Maille paused, treading water as she turned in circles, searching in the inky swells for the curve of a human head. Impossible with the waves breaking moonlight into sequined facets and the rise and fall of swells tall as houses. She’d never find him. She needed him to cry out once more.
“Come on. Give me a hint.”
An irregular shape, not seal-like or wavelike, caught her attention. As she paddled closer, she made out a man waving, heard his hoarse cry before his head disappeared below a wave. He resurfaced choking.
She dove under the water, swimming straight for where she’d seen him last. She resurfaced as he went under again, but she was close enough now to reach his long hair, swirling like dark kelp in the water. She grabbed a handful.
It was surprisingly easy to pull him along, as if he had managed to overcome his instinctive terror and submit to her rescue. He might not have been so submissive had he realized, as she did now, that they weren’t making progress.
Maille fought down a sudden kick of panic in her chest, struggling to swim parallel to the shore, caught by swells that tossed them dangerously close to jagged rocks. She had to concentrate her energy on swimming north until they were beyond the rip where she was free to swim shoreward.
When her feet finally found ground, a wave slammed her, flinging them both onto the sand. Depositing them in a tangle of limbs. Maille on top.
A small wave washed over them, and the sensation was that of a liquid blanket settling around her shoulders and then melting away. Panting, draped over his body, Maille was too spent to lift her head from a pillow of seaweed.
Another wave swept up, warm liquid fingers caressing her thighs.
She needed to move him higher up the beach, away from the rising tide, see to his needs. With a groan she pushed up to hands and knees, still straddling his body.
Damn! She’d hauled in one hell of a wet dream. Jet-black hair fanned out on the sand. His body lean, long and lusciously muscled. She started to lick her lips, caught herself, and forced her tongue back in her mouth. She was supposed to be saving his life, not jumping his bones.
Something was wrong. That realization drowned attraction in a wave of adrenaline.
His chest didn’t seem to be moving. Her breath caught and her heartbeat kicked up to double time. Maille thought there’d been a slight rise and fall of his chest beneath her breasts when they’d first washed ashore. His lips looked blue. But when she put her ear to his chest, the beat of his heart was strong and quick.
She scraped her mind for facts.
Fact—a heart could beat for several minutes after breathing stopped.
Would his lips still be blue?
Fact—in the moonlight everything looked blue.
Fact—his eyelids were at half-mast, and there was a barely perceptible gleam aimed at her. He probably didn’t need to be resuscitated.
Fact—she could discover the state of his respiration in other ways than this slow descent of her head and the pressing of lips to his. He tasted like sin and secrets.
His lips were warm and firm under hers, and they parted in a humid mingling of breath. Goddess, he smelled wonderful. She inhaled the scent of male and mystery laced with magick. Worries over what was real, what wasn’t, where she was, trickled away like so many grains of sand.
Fuck a bunch of facts.
Did you always wanted to be a writer? If not what did you want to be?
I wanted to have my own horse ranch. Then I wanted to be a forest ranger. I wound up a biomedical engineer. Yet, through it all, I have always been a writer, from the first hit short story in second grade to the first novel in seventh grade, to my first published works in college and finally my first published novel in 2010.
How long did it take to get your first book published?
I started writing my first romance as a challenge with my sister. We were both going to write the first three chapters and submit to a contest. I won and an agent requested a partial. While I waited to hear from her I finished the novel. The partial sat on the agent’s desk about nine months before a publisher saw a sample in a writer’s forum and invited me to submit. I notified the agent I was withdrawing my submission and the novel was contracted. All total, it took a little over a year.
Do you do another job except for writing and can you tell us more about it?
I had my own computer repair shop for many years before my book was published but writing takes most of my time now and I only kept a few of my favorite customers.
What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarize it in less than 20 words what would you say?
Make Me Wet is a selkie tale. Selkie males are irresistible to human women, but to save Ronin from his curse, Maille has to tell him no all night long.
Who is your publisher?
I have six romances published with Ellora’s Cave and one video game with Orchid Games.
How long does it usually take you to write a book, from the original idea to finishing writing it?
It depends on the story. Sometimes a story will take over my life and I can write it pretty fast. Other stories unwrap themselves slowly. So it can take anywhere from two months to a year.
What can we expect from you in the future? ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?
I’m negotiating some interesting projects that are a blend of both game and book, interactive fiction. These will be choose-your-path style stories, romantic fiction but with the reader making choices that influence how the story ends. I’m excited because I love reading and writing this style of fiction. My tagline is taking romance into the next dimension. What I mean by that is finding new ways to tell and experience romance stories. All of my traditional novels have a little bit of interactivity or game included in the story. Make Me Wet has a virtual World linked from the front matter in the novel and on my author website where you can explore the world of the story in virtual reality.
What genre would you place your books into?
Paranormal romance and cyber romance.
What made you decide to write that genre of book?
These are the stories that push me as a writer. In pushing my characters to examine their primal selves and step out of their comfort zones I have to step out of mine.
Do you have a certain routine you have for writing? ie You listen to music, sit in a certain chair?
I like to write in a virtual world. One of my favorite spots is on the deck of a beach house in my Nara’s Nook Grid. I go there early in the morning and I sit by the water as the sun starts to rise and birds start to sing. There are mermen frolicking beneath the water and dragons perched on rocks and in trees. Unicorns and plot bunnies hang out in the front yard. In world you hear the surf and see the branches of trees move when the wind blows. There’s usually a purring kitten or pet tiger trying to get my attention. It’s hard to understand, I know, but within about five minutes the real world fades away and the fantasy world feels real. That’s the place where I can make my fantastic tales feel real. Luckily, there are virtual computers inside that world where I can write my stories and they get saved to my computer.
Do you choose a title first, or write the book then choose the title?
I generally have a working title and I am superstitious about sharing more than the initials while I am writing a story. I don’t know why, because usually it takes two or three tries at a title before I get one the publisher approves.
How do you come up with characters names and place names in your books?
The characters seem to name themselves. Places too now that I think about it. I try to stay away from using names of places except the most crucial ones. I like for readers to feel that what is happening could be going on in their town.
Are character names and place names decided after their creation? Or do you pick a character/place name and then invent them?
Names tend to be organic. They sometimes come attached to a character right at the start or sometimes I don’t get a name until I’ve learned more about a character through the story. I’m writing a story now about a young woman headed out on a road trip. I drafted the whole thing before she had a name. When I wrote The Dungeon Gourmet, I knew Bond’s name and that he was a kinky French chef before I knew anything else.
Do you decide on character traits (ie shy, quiet, tomboy girl) before writing the whole book or as you go along?
Some characters come to me fully formed, usually the main character. I’ll choose the traits for supporting characters to facilitate conflict and the major character change.
Are there any hidden messages or morals contained in your books? (Morals as in like Aesops Fables type of "The moral of this story is..")
I generally have a lesson I’ll want a character to learn. For instance, in a story I am developing for a game I want the lesson to be that life is not something you can horde. Life should be lived as a fearless adventure. For my Pantherian Passions series, as much as I want to entertain readers, I want to make them aware of parahuman research and to inspire them to learn more and form opinions about it. I’m not trying to push one agenda over another but I think everyone should be aware it happens and know whether they approve or not.
Which format of book do you prefer, eBook, hardback, or paperback?
I prefer eBook. There are just so many reasons that eBooks are the greener choice. I know some people say that they love the smell of a book, the feel of it in their hands. I understand that. I just love the smell of a forest more, the movement and sound of wildlife around me.
Whether it's a shapeshifter romance exploring the primal power of the wild feminine, or BDSM romance where love digs into a character's shadows, Nara believes romance should open the door and push lovers into a new dimension: sexually, emotionally, and sometimes physically.
Nara Malone is an award winning novelist and poet. As a freelance journalist and writer, her feature profiles on women entrepreneurs and her romantic short stories have been published in newspapers, magazines, and digital publications.