Thursday, September 9, 2010

Sonoran Heat - hot desert romance available now!

For those of you who, unlike me, got out of the house and offline this past Labor Day weekend, my May/December desert romance Sonoran Heat debuted at Amber Allure!



Newly single, Tony finds a fresh start with 21-year-old Josh, but worries chasing a man half his age will lead to heartache. It’s hard to resist when Josh intrigues Tony on an intellectual level -- and fires the landscaper's libido hotter than the Arizona desert they call home.

Digital art student by day, Josh waits tables at night, but his true dream is to paint. When he falls for Tony, he starts to rethink his goals and how the sexy older man might fit into them. But Tony’s recovering from a failed relationship, one that lasted nearly as long as Josh has been alive, and Josh must prove that in spite of age and inexperience, his feelings are sincere.

As the desert nights heat up, Tony and Josh explore possibilities both in and out of the bedroom, but when each man faces a difficult choice, they must decide on the future. Whether that future is together, or separate, is a matter of reason versus the heart.


Excerpt (Copyright 2010 Katrina Strauss)

Josh passed Tony a tall cup of iced coffee. As their fingers brushed, Tony felt another charge of electricity, and Josh’s cheeks flushed darker. Feeling his own face go warm, Tony took a sip of his drink. He glanced around the lobby. The crowd was starting to thin as the art opening drew to a close. “Good turnout,” he said.

Josh looked around with him. “Yeah, more people came than I expected.”

“Looked like you got interviewed earlier.”

Josh nodded. “One of my teachers arranged it with New Times without warning me. I was totally unprepared. I hope I sounded coherent.”

“I’m sure you did fine.” Tony knew Phoenix’s alternative newspaper well; once upon a time, New Times had served as guide to the city’s underground gay scene. “It should make for some good exposure.”

“I hope so.” Josh’s face softened. “I appreciate you coming.”

“I wanted to see you again,” Tony admitted.

“That’s why I invited you.” Josh darted his tongue between his lips as he held Tony’s gaze. The combination of shy and confident proved charming and seductive at once.

“I guess you’re celebrating later with friends?” Tony said, testing the waters, seeing if Josh had plans that night.

“No. I’m bringing home leftover hors d’oeuvres and watching The Twilight Zone marathon until I crash. I work the night shift tomorrow, so I’ve got to readjust my schedule.”

“Maybe I could talk you into dinner instead of cheese and crackers.”

There, he’d done it. Tony wondered if the pause on Josh’s end was deliberate or smacked of surprise. “Dinner sounds good,” Josh finally offered. “No Mama Irene’s, though. I eat there too much.”

Tony chuckled. “Understood.” His laughter faded, and he took a deep breath. He knew his next suggestion might be premature, but chances were meant to be taken. “Do you like Italian?”

“I love Italian.” Josh smiled.

“Good to know. My great-grandmother was Italian.” Tony cringed as his lame attempt at flirtation slipped from his lips.

“I thought I liked you for some reason.” Josh’s sly grin quickly put Tony at ease. The artist sidled up closer. His arm brushed Tony’s, and the heat between them burned a little hotter. “Where do you have in mind?”

Tony lowered his voice and leaned in. His lips hovered near Josh’s ear. “Some place quiet, not too far from here. We can dine alfresco and watch the sunset over the mountains.”

“Sounds nice,” Josh murmured. “Kind of…expensive.”

“Not really,” Tony said, drawn in by how gorgeous Josh’s eyes were up close, by how clean and fresh his hair smelled. “My place. I’ll cook.”

Josh wet his lips with another flick of the tongue. It was all Tony could do not to kiss the other man right then and there.

“Sure,” Josh said. “If you can wait a few minutes for me to pack up the food, I’ll follow you. Let me tell my roommate Eddie.”

“Tell me what?” a voice chimed in. An attractive Latino with auburn-streaked hair materialized beside Josh. He slung an arm over Josh’s shoulder and gave Tony an appraising glance.

Josh’s roommate, Tony presumed, and a protective one from the looks of it. He extended a hand in greeting. “You must be Eddie.”

Eddie returned the gesture. A playful smirk curled the corners of his lips. “You must be Tony. Josh was right. You are hot.”

Josh looked like he wanted to crawl under a rock. “Excuse me,” he said, steering Eddie away. They spoke in murmurs as they convened in a corner.

So Tony’s name had come up in conversation, and favorably so, a fact that boosted his confidence and left him hopeful for things to come. He also noted with interest that Josh was daring enough to chance dinner at a new acquaintance’s house, but safe enough to drive his own car and let someone know where he’d be. Tony’s respect for Josh was growing by the second.

But even as his respect grew, Tony’s eyes strayed to Josh’s ass, down his thighs to his bare calves, then back up again. He couldn’t help but wonder what their impromptu dinner date might lead to. He’d be lying if he didn’t say the prospect of bedding such an attractive young man excited him beyond measure.

Eddie’s voice rose as he glimpsed over his shoulder and cast Tony a pointed look. “Brianna and I will clean up. Get the hell out of here and have some fun for a change.” He gave Josh a nudge.

As his date for the evening approached, Tony downed the last of his drink. The ice had melted, the coffee gone as warm as the air simmering around him.


Sonoran Heat, available now! Get it while it's hot at:

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