Baoule Spirit Lovers Guest Post by Christy Gissendaner

statue

The Baoule people of Africa’s Ivory Coast believe a parallel universe, called the Blolo, exists where the spirits of newborns waiting to be born and the deceased co-exist with the real world. Every spirit has a mate in the Blolo, who can be enlisted to save their mate’s problems while in our world. Interesting? I certainly thought so. Enough to write a Christmas novella centered on the Baoule culture.

Romantic problems, infertility, and general unhappiness in the real world can be cured by commissioning figurines of spirit mates. Blolo bian (males) and Blolo bla (females) are generally carved from wood and are created to the specifications found most desirable in a spirit mate. Food, money, and attention can be given to the spirit mate to keep them appeased, thus allowing a person to find happiness in the real world.

Active relationships are maintained between spirit mates, particularly in a dream state. It is believed that nocturnal visits from a spirit mate will initiate healthy interaction between a person and his or her physical mate.

Much detail is given to these figurines – plump bottoms, elegant necks, thick legs. All the attributes desirable in a proper Baoule mate. Social status and individuality is acquired by use of adornment, costume, and hairstyle. Even skin tone is considered when commissioning a spirit mate statue.

This very primitive…yet romantic…practice provided the inspiration for Christmas Spirits, a holiday themed novella set in modern-day Georgia. A chance reading in an old encyclopedia and Tedros, the “spirit” of Christmas Spirits, was born! The story is meant to portray the reality of spirit lovers, and I took a very atypical approach to most romance novels.

Keep reading to learn more about Kia’s quest for happiness and just what role Tedros plays in her search for happiness.

Christy cover

Coming Soon

Christy Gissendaner

Genre: Paranormal, Contemporary, African American, holiday romance

Publisher: Christy Gissendaner

Number of pages: 90

Word Count: 20,000

Book Description:

Kia Mays has little time for anything as her lifelong dream of being a fashion designer comes to fruition. For Christmas, she takes time out of her busy schedule to visit her family in Georgia where her beloved grandmother, Naya, reveals a secret of her Baoule heritage.

In Baoule, located on the Ivory Coast of Africa, the people believe in spirit lovers, which you are separated from at birth. Tedros, Kia’s lover from the spirit world, appears to her and reveals that he is there to assist her in finding a mortal lover.

Elliot Melton, the brother of Kia’s new sister in law, is also invited to share the season with the family. With the help of a meddling grandmother and an otherworldly spirit, Elliot and Kia soon find out that Christmas is the best time to fall in love.

Buy Links:

http://www.amazon.com/Christmas-Spirits-Christy-Gissendaner-ebook/dp/B016G14KS4/

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/%22Christy%20Gissendaner%22?Ntk=P_key_Contributor_List&Ns=P_Sales_Rank&Ntx=mode+matchall

Excerpt

One moment Tedros was there, and the next, his image faded away. She blinked and opened her eyes to find herself in a store, only a few feet from Elliot. He stood in the middle of the women’s clothing, frozen like a statue.

She circled him to admire his form.  His taut buttocks and thick thighs looked delectable in a pair of dark jeans.  A faded Hendrix T-shirt completed his ensemble.  His casual clothes should make him look ordinary, but even in a sackcloth the man would entice a sane woman to madness.

She could stand there forever, but her body urged her to do more than look.  She touched him, and he immediately came to life.  He didn’t seem to notice the sales lady frozen at his side or the young couple stuck in an eternal embrace.

She drew him toward the dressing room, allowing him to see the promise evident in her eyes.

“Kia,” he said her name, but she shushed him with one hand over his mouth.

“Don’t ask any questions.”  She ran her other hand across his firm pectorals before she reached for the hem and drew it upward.  “I want you to think about what we’re fixing to do.”

“And what is that?”  His lips tickled her palm as he ignored her command and spoke anyway.

She gave him a coy look.  “What do you think?”

He snuck his hands around her waist and cupped her ass.  “I think you’re being very naughty this Christmas.”

“Maybe I need a spanking.” She took a step back, intrigued by her reflection in the mirror.  Her thigh length skirt and tall, heeled boots were unintentionally sexy when paired with a pink cashmere sweater.  She lifted a leg to unzip her boot, but Elliot stopped her.

“No.  Leave them on.”

She slowly lowered her foot to the floor.  This could be interesting.

Without waiting for him to give another command, she reached under her skirt and peeled off her panties.  The red silk slithered down her thighs and she balanced on one foot, then the other, as she tossed them aside.

Elliot’s jaw tightened as raw need flashed across his feet.

“Come here.”  His husky voice promised untold delights.

She shook her head and crooked a finger at him before sinking into the padded chair opposite the mirror.  “You come here.”

She spread her legs.  The damp curls of her sex were clearly visible in the mirror.  Her hand dropped to her lap and she flipped her skirt aside.  “It’s time I gave you your present.”

He zeroed in between her thighs.  His nostrils flared and his dark gaze met hers hungrily.  “Baby girl, you’d better be damned sure.”

The familiar nickname on his lips warmed her heart. Other places, too. “Merry Christmas, Elliot.”

He moved forward.  He bent his head to capture her lips, and his kiss left no doubt she would be his before they left the dressing room.  She held onto his shoulders and lost herself in the forceful kiss.  She rubbed against him, and her delicate tissue scraped the fly of his jeans.  The rough material and cold metal made her shiver. 

About the Author:

Christy Gissendaner is a paranormal and contemporary romance authorauthor who believes laughter and love should go hand in hand.

 

Christy lives in Alabama with her husband and three sons. She’s always hard at work on her next novel, but in her spare time she loves blackjack, karaoke, and anything resembling a vacation!

 

To find out more, please visit http://christygissendaner.webs.com

 

http://www.twitter.com/christygis

 

http://www.facebook.com/christygis

 

http://www.goodreads.com/christygissendaner

 

Nails, Guest Post & Shift Happens Release!

Nails – Guest Post by Christy Gissendaner

A big thank you to Anita for having me today. Anita and I worked together on our previous project, Paranormally Yours, and I enjoyed getting to know her better!

Today is doubly happy. Not only do I get to chat with you beautiful people, but it’s also release day. Shift Happens is book one in a brand new series, I Heart Shifters. Each installment will be short, hot, and funny as heck. I’m excited about this project, and I hope everyone gets a kick out of Ellie’s antics.

Ellie, the heroine in Shift Happens, owns a nail salon. It was an interesting occupation for me to give to a character considering I can’t paint my way out of a paper bag. I blame it on being left-handed. I’m awesome like all lefties, of course, but painting nails isn’t my forte. Unless it’s paint by numbers, I’m screwed.

You get the picture.

So here’s Ellie, manicurist extraordinaire, who caters to the shifter housewives of Atlanta’s elite. Unlike me, she’s a whiz with a nail file and a bottle of polish. She creates colorful creations for her clients, all of whom don’t realize Ellie’s a shifter herself. She’s a half dragon shifter, who’s never quite mastered the art of keeping smoky belches hidden.

Since it’s finally spring and sandal season is in full effect, I couldn’t wait to treat myself to a pedicure at the conclusion of writing Ellie’s story. I got pink polish with white polka dots, in case you’re interested. ; )

My first ever pedicure took place last May, right before I attended the RT Conference in New Orleans. I’m a bit ticklish and the “cheese grater” thingamabob freaked me out…and made me giggle! (When I wasn’t busy being disgusted by the entire process.) But boy, were my foot smooth as silk. I went to the Dark Side and became a pedicure regular since then.

For someone who cringes at the sound of a file, you’d think I’d avoid a nail salon like the plague. Not so, fearless readers. I may cringe, of course, but the discomfort is worth it for a fantastic French manicure and cute, colorful little toesie woesies. I still think I have ugly feet – flat and wide – but no one can deny my love of pink when I’m all glammed-up with a fresh set of paint.

I’m currently growing out my fingernails. For a lifelong nail biter, this is a hard road to travel. My nails have finally grown past the pads of my fingers and I’m already envisioning the perfect shade of pink to christen them with. Fingers crossed I don’t lose an eye taking out my contacts. That is a tricky maneuver, let me tell ya.

So we’ve established I love pink, pedicures, and peanut butter cups…okay, so I didn’t tell you that, but it’s true and it does start with P…I want to know what style everyone is rocking these days.

Come on, share the deets. I’ll be right here taking notes.

cover

Shift Happens (I Heart Shifters, Book 1)

Christy Gissendaner

Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal Romance

Publisher: Etopia Press

Number of pages: 69

Word Count: 24,906

Book Description:

Ellie Reynolds runs a nail salon that caters to shifters of all varieties. The proverbial shift hits the fan when billionaire mogul Jackson Lawrence walks in the door and offers Ellie two million dollars to sell her shop. Ellie has no intention of selling out, especially to someone who plans to bulldoze her shop to the ground and replace it with a fast food joint. Their battle of wit and will is brought to a sudden halt when Jackson’s enemies appear, throwing them into a fight for their lives.

Jackson believed he’d left violence behind when he resigned his position with the Blood Wolves, a secret shifter military group, but someone wants his company’s cyber invention and will stop at nothing to get it. He didn’t mean to drag Ellie into his mess, but he’s willing to do anything to protect her and the firewall his friend created…anything except fight his attraction to the outspoken redhead he’s suddenly responsible for. Jackson soon learns Ellie is hotter than he first gave her credit for…like dragon hot…and life is about to get a whole lot more interesting.

Sometimes shift happens when you least expect it. 

Buy Links:

http://www.etopiapress.com/brands/Christy-Gissendaner.html

http://www.amazon.com/Shift-Happens-Heart-Shifters-Book-ebook/dp/B00WGX0CXE/

Excerpt

Rain kept up a staccato rhythm on the tin roof, and her supersensitive hearing picked out every drop. She’d never be able to sleep like this, not while her mind was racked by thoughts of Jackson. The situation was laughable. She should be more worried about her safety and instead all she could think about was the fine-looking man in the room across the hall, like the perfect dimples in his cheeks when he smiled really big, or the perfect symmetry of his gorgeous face. And that ass. She could bounce a quarter off that ass.

She groaned as the familiar heat filled the place between her thighs. She needed something to take her mind off Jackson.

Milk. That’s what she needed. A nice, cool glass of milk.

Well, what she really needed was her vibrator, but it was at home, tucked safely away in her drawer under a bundle of handmade scarves that she’d bought and never worn.

Ellie slid out of bed and tugged the hem of the too-short nightgown. She’d picked out a size eight when she was more like a twelve, so Jackson wouldn’t know her true clothing dimensions. When he’d gone to pay for the items she’d chosen, he’d merely lifted an eyebrow but wisely chosen not to say anything. Could she help it if she’d been born with a fondness for sweets? Blame Nana’s genes, not her own lack of will.

Speaking of sweets, cookies would be nice too. She wondered if Jackson had any in the cabinets. He seemed to keep the Montevallo home stocked with foodstuffs since they hadn’t had to stop for groceries.

A few minutes later, with chocolate chip cookies clutched in both hands and a mug of milk hooked around her thumbs, she crept back down the hall toward her room. She bent her head to take a bite of a cookie and lost her grip on the drink. She cursed when the mug fell out of her hands. The milk spilled across her toes and the ceramic shattered when it hit the wooden planks.

“Ellie!” Jackson jerked his bedroom door open and appeared in the doorway, disheveled and entirely too yummy. He wore nothing but boxers and oh geez, he had a six-pack. A perfectly lickable six-pack that made her mouth and sex water. She hoped she wouldn’t drool, although it was a distinct possibility.

“I’m sorry for waking you.”

Jackson ran a hand over his shorn hair. “Fuck. I thought they’d found us.”

“Nope, just the cookie monster.” She held up the cookies in her hands and grimaced. How embarrassing. “Want one?”

He came forward until their toes touched. Hers, milky and chilled. His, warm and dry. She wanted to feel her feet wrapped around his beneath the covers. She wanted to feel everything of his beneath the covers, actually.

His thumb brushed the corner of her lips. “Chocolate,” he explained right before he licked his finger.

Damn her knees. Useless joints that they were. “Umm.”

And damn her larynx for not working properly.

His gaze dropped and she suddenly realized she was in the too-short, too-tight nightgown. Her boobs stretched the cotton material and she didn’t need to look down to know she was nipping. If she turned around, he could probably tell she wasn’t wearing panties. She’d never been so self-conscious before, but never had she been in the presence of a hot-ass canine shifter who was practically naked.

Jackson’s expression turned predatory. His cheeks seemed to hollow out, becoming more pronounced, and his nostrils flared as if he’d caught a whiff of something. Perhaps it was her. The quick shower she’d taken had been hours before. Then again, no panties. Perhaps he smelled her scent. She clamped her thighs tight together and prayed he didn’t laugh. The situation was embarrassing enough without suffering unrequited lust.

“Ellie.” He spoke her name again, but it was low-pitched and soft.

Oh God. She wanted to eat the cookies in his bed. But later. Much, much later. “Yeah?”

“I owe you something.” He slid a hand around her waist and cupped the upper swell of her butt. His fingers spread out in a proprietary manner, as if he was sure of his welcome. “I wanted to wait until all this shit was over, but you’re killing me. I can’t hold out any longer.”

Neither could she. She went up on tiptoe and puckered her lips. He stared at her as he traced the seam of her lips with his index fingers. “I think you misunderstand the type of kiss I want from you.”

About the Author:

Christy Gissendaner is a paranormal and contemporary romanceauthor author who believes laughter and love should go hand in hand.

Christy lives in Alabama with her husband and three sons. She’s always hard at work on her next novel, but in her spare time she loves blackjack, karaoke, and anything resembling a vacation!

To find out more, please visit http://christygissendaner.webs.com

http://www.twitter.com/christygis

http://www.facebook.com/christygis

http://www.goodreads.com/christygissendaner

 

Cover Reveal – Paranormally Yours

Paranormally Yours

Seven of today’s hottest paranormal authors come together to bring you a boxed set guaranteed to keep you warm on a cold winter’s night. Do shifters make you howl? Or do you prefer the bite of a vampire? Perhaps the controlling hand of a demi-god is more your style. Paranormally Yours has a story—or seven—to set your pulse racing.

Paranormally Yours V_02

Trailer:

The Reluctant Gift by Sotia Lazu

Mini blurb:

Salina has earned her one-year vacation on Earth, damn it! She’s been an exemplary sentinel for her pack, and saved all the universes.

Too bad she hasn’t been very effective at kicking Aherin to the curb. She had one little lapse in judgement—sleeping with the annoyingly persistent vampire—and now he just won’t leave.

As if that wasn’t enough, her holiday plans are spoiled, her world is turned upside down, and she’s going to miss out on a yummy family dinner, all because she’s kidnapped on Christmas Eve.

By Santa.

Author links:

Twitter: @justsotia
Website: www://sotialazu.com
Blog: www://sotialazu.wordpress.com
Facebook pg: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Sotia-Lazu-Author/506067129453183
Goodreads author pg: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4597070.Sotia_Lazu
Amazon author pg: http://www.amazon.com/Sotia-Lazu/e/B006ZXWZYK/

Dreaming of a Wolf by Sofia Grey

Blurb:

Alun was Olivia’s first, and he was supposed to be her forever. After a tragic accident steals him away, Olivia wonders how she can ever be whole again. 

When he starts talking to her in her dreams, she has to ask herself: is she going mad with grief, or is there still a chance for their forever?

 

www.SofiaGrey.com

Catch me blogging with Allyson Lindt at www.GeminiGirls.com

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6906923.Sofia_Grey

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Sofia.Grey.Romance.Author

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/sofiagrey1/

Twitter: @SofiaGreyAuthor   https://twitter.com/SofiaGreyAuthor

Amazon author profile page: https://www.amazon.com/author/sofiagrey

Red Dawn by Ann Gimpel

Mini Blurb:

Llyr is a whale shifter with a big problem. The seas are dying, poisoned by heavy metal contamination and barrels of trash. In a bold and desperate move, he and his mate Galatea, the Sea Witch, hatch up magic to allow him to spend as long as he needs to on Earth.

Masquerading as a marine biologist, Llyr signs on with a firm whose mission is to save the oceans. When his boss turns out to have malevolent underpinnings, Llyr returns to the sea for answers. With death lurking behind every corner, he and Galatea find themselves boxed into an impossible situation.

Links:

http://www.amazon.com/author/anngimpel

http://www.facebook.com/anngimpel.author

@AnnGimpel (for Twitter)

http://www.anngimpel.com

http://anngimpel.blogspot.com

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4747003.Ann_Gimpel

Courting Mortality by Loralie Hall

Blurb

Eli’s spent eternity thwarting the same family curse that granted his brother, Loki, ever-lasting fame. Eli kind of got screwed in that one. His plan to stay single and detached has worked for several millennia. And then he meets Marley. She’s making him abandon all his resolutions, except the one that never lets him forget the curse. Falling for her means her death, and he won’t let that happen.

Links

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LoralieHall
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/aszreal
Blog: http://blog.apathyshero.com
Website: http://urielsfall.co

For Heaven’s Cakes by Diane Saxon

Blurb:

Twelve years of living in Ireland smoothed Beau’s rough edges, and hard work as a construction worker made him a wealthy man. The call of his pack is stronger than he can resist though, and he isn’t averse to returning to show his small home town in America what he’s made of himself.

What he doesn’t anticipate is meeting the local pharmacist’s daughter – in his wolf form. By day, he renovates the pharmacy, and tries to cajole the lush assistant into having dinner with him. By night he watches Catherine bake her fantastic creations and blossom through her art.

Sleeping on her bed each night in his wolf form isn’t exactly ideal, but how does he tell her the wolf she’s come to love, is the man she lusts over?

 

Links :

Author Website   http://dianesaxon.com

Author Blog  http://www.dianesaxon.com/blogspot.html

Author Facebook Page   www.facebook.com/authordianesaxon

Author Twitter   @Diane_Saxon

Author Goodreads Profile            http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/19843221

Author Amazon   http://www.amazon.co.uk/Diane-Saxon/e/B00DDL4C5W/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0

Uncaged by Christy Gissendaner 

Blurb:

Mixed breed vampire shifter, Gabe Moncrief, has made a name for himself in the Cage, an arena where only the strong survive. He’s training for the fight of his life–and vengeance–when Rain Pettis appears. As an Elemental – a supernatural being descended from Zeus himself – she holds the key to his future in the Cage.

As much as she loves her brothers, Rain needs to break away from their overwhelming influence to become her own person. Gabe is the only shifter capable of standing up to them. But when Rain learns a secret that tests her loyalty to her family, she has a decision to make. Does she risk it all for love? And can she bear watching Gabe endanger his life within the Cage? 

Excerpt:

An ill-timed crack of lightning singed Gabe’s eyebrows. He ignored the sizzle of energy, and landed a final punch. His opponent’s eyes rolled back into his head, as he sank to the ground. The elemental effects of the arena disappeared. Gabe once again stood in the center of a dirt ring. No rain drummed on his head. No dust clouds or lightning threatened.

Gabe didn’t wait for the announcement of the knock-out to echo across the arena’s sound system. He strode to the center of the ring and lifted both arms into the air. A chorus of screams reverberated in the arena, bounced off the rafters, and grew to a deafening roar.

He lifted his gaze to the owners’ box. The tallest of the three figures lingering within the glass structure lifted his hand in salute. Gabe tilted his chin and moved his gaze, zeroing in on the lone female within the box.

Rain Pettis was a force to be reckoned with, both literally and figuratively. Unlike her eldest brother, she didn’t acknowledge him as the victor of the fight in any way. She was strictly professional, always dressed in formfitting black business suits, with her blonde hair swept into a tight bun. The tiny black glasses she wore weren’t prescription. Elementals had perfect vision, courtesy of their godly sire. The glasses perched on the end of Rain’s perfect nose were merely a costume piece for the role she played as the unattainable ice princess.

She didn’t fool him one bit. He’d seen the looks she gave him when she thought he wasn’t paying attention. She was interested—no doubt about it. But he’d always steered clear. To mess with the youngest Pettis would be akin to having a death wish. Rumor had it her brothers were overly protective, even going so far as to threaten any man that dared touch their sister. The risk didn’t stop Gabe from sweeping his gaze across her oval face, luscious lips, and lower, down to the tiny hint of cleavage displayed by her lace-trimmed blouse.

Nice. He was enough of a vamp to consider flying up to the box for a closer look. Only the dangerous warning vibes her brothers sent his way kept his feet grounded in the dirt.

A sudden shower of cold rain washed over him. He swiped his hand over his damp face and grinned. Apparently she’d caught him staring. A cold shower was definitely what he needed. Nothing got to him quite like a woman determined to play hard to get.

 

Author Links

 

Website – http://christygissendaner.webs.com

 

Twitter – http://www.twitter.com/christygis

 

Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/christygis

Goodreads Author Page – http://www.goodreads.com/christygissendaner 

Pursuing Grace by Anita Cox

Blurb:

Though Grace McGovern just graduated college, she’s restless, has no idea what to do with her life and to top it off, she finds herself single and unsatisfied with relationships in general.

Roman intends to claim Grace and make her his mate and part of his pack. He’s searched for her for five years and now she’s within his longing grasp, apart from one minor problem. She has no idea she’s a wolf.

As Grace tries to identify and cope with her inner wolf, she also needs to figure out the unprecedented and undeniable pull Roman has on her. Could he finally offer her the fulfilling relationship for which she’s been yearning?

 

Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/U99P9

Website: http://www.authoranitacox.com/

Blog: https://authoranitacox.wordpress.com/

https://www.facebook.com/AuthorAnitaCox

https://www.amazon.com/author/anitacox

https://www.google.com/+AnitaCoxAuthor