Friday, March 3, 2017

Blog Tour - Closer Than Blood by Jayne Lockwood!

Title: Closer Than Blood 
Series: Closer Than Blood 
Author: Jayne Lockwood
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Release Date: March 4, 2014

Forbidden passion, blackmail and murderous intent in the cold, glittering heart of Manhattan.

Against his better judgement, slick hitman Frank Mancini falls for the sultry sister of his latest client. He is also hiding a dark secret, but can he get her into bed before his past is revealed? 

Tony Freemantle is dying and desperate. His last wish is to seek vengeance on the half-brother he blames for his misfortunes. He’s never met him. He doesn’t even know what he looks like. All he knows is that he wants him dead. 

Pagan Freemantle is the innocent woman unwillingly caught up in her sibling's deadly plan. When she discovers she has to pay for the hit, her attempts to make a deal throws her headlong into a dangerous attraction with a man who is patently bad news. 

And can she trust Richard Mason, the elusive millionaire half-brother who is just a seductive voice at the end of a telephone? When a road trip to California ends with shocking revelations, it seems Pagan can trust no-one but herself.

Below is an excerpt from the book. I've chosen Pagan's first conversation with Richard Mason, and he isn't quite what she is expecting...

Pagan was put on hold. Gershwin played again, then the phone clicked. The woman on the other end introduced herself as Eleanor Horne and Pagan went through her spiel again. There was a tiny sound, as if the other woman had sharply drawn in her breath.  

One moment please. Pagan realised she was shaking. God, she was nervous. I’m sorry for the intrusion, Ms. Freemantle, but may I ask you your birth name, birth date and that of your brother?

 Pagan was stunned. She had not been expecting an interrogation. Is this the right number for Richard Freemantle? I really need to speak to him urgently.

 I do need you to answer the question, Ms. Freemantle. The woman’s voice was firm. Pagan sighed. She had no choice but to play along. 

 Fine! I was born Susan Mary and my birthday is on 25th February 1976. My brother, Anthony James, is the 14th October 1978. Our parents died on 31st October 2007. Their add... Thank you, Ms. Freemantle, please hold for a moment. 

 Eleanor Horne’s unflustered voice cut through Pagan’s increasingly frustrated one. Then, almost immediately, a different voice, curt and male. Mason. Who the hell are you? 

 Pagan’s hand tightened on the receiver. He was going to make her go through it yet again, but she was damned before she would. Is that Richard Freemantle? 

 Was. He sounded impatient. What do you want? Are you always this rude? It’s the money, isn’t it? That’s why you’re calling? If so, you’ve wasted your time.  

 She was momentarily lost for words. He sounded dry and sarcastic, his English accent completely buried under a North American drawl, hardened by urban Manhattan. Whoever she had been expecting, this man was her worst case scenario. Doubled. She took a deep breath.  

 It isn’t about money, but there is something we need to discuss and I don’t want to do it over the phone. Silence, then, How did you find me? I’d … rather not say. 

 He sighed loudly. Did you fuck someone for it? Offer to suck his dick? She almost dropped the phone. What gives you the right to ask questions like that?  

 My life consists of three things: work, money and sex. Those are the boundaries in which I think. Besides, I’m family. Answer the question. No, she said faintly. I used my initiative, that’s all. Does that satisfy your curiosity? 

 Not quite. I want to know if you’re a conniving little bitch like Celia was. I’m nothing like her! She looked around quickly to see if anyone was listening. They all seemed very intent on their work, as she should have been at that moment. We never even lived on the same planet! Why is it so important to you? She caused my mother a lot of pain. I take offence to that.  

 It sounds to me as if she did your mother a favour. Celia wasn’t the last of his flings. She was just the one who could organize the best dinner parties! If you have issues with her, that’s fine, but don’t take it out on me. Why did you change your name? 

 I ... No-one had bothered to ask her before. I didn’t like Susan. It didn’t suit me. And being an uneducated heathen does? Fuck you! I don’t have to explain myself to anyone! 

 There was an explosion of laughter on the other end of the line. She could not believe he had provoked such a knee-jerk reaction from her. It was time for some damage limitation. 

 Please, let me buy you a drink tonight. I need to talk to you but I can’t do it over the phone. Another laugh. This is getting interesting, heathen. I hope you’re not looking for religious enlightenment. God gave up on me a long time ago. 

 She took a deep breath, disliking his mocking tone. No, I just need ... to talk to you. Something has happened and you need to be aware of it. That’s all. 

 His silence was unnerving before he said, Not tonight, tomorrow. Be at Phil’s Diner at 8.30. It’s on 54th Street. And be on time. I’ve got a plane to catch.  

 She quickly jotted the information down. That’s great. I’m … The phone crashed down. She was still staring at the receiver when Moira hoisted her considerable buttocks on her desk. 

 Well? That had to be the most surreal phone call I’ll have this week. What was he like? Obnoxious. Thought he could say anything he damned well wanted.  

 We’re meeting tomorrow night but not for long. He has a plane to catch. She imbued the sentence with heavy importance. One thing was weird. It was almost like he already knew me. He didn’t even ask what I looked like. 

 Moira shrugged. That’s guys for you. Why all this interest in family reunions, all of a sudden? Can’t say at the moment. Only that Tony has really gone and screwed up this time.  

 Moira frowned into her pale, anxious face. You okay, girly? Pagan raised a smile. I won’t be if I lose my job. The boss is coming. She nodded towards a thin man with a fat beard, weaving his way through the open plan office. 

 Later, girl. Moira departed, leaving Pagan to concentrate on her computer screen.

Lot's of Teaser's... There in no special order.

"I know it is only March but I have to say that hands down this is one of the best books so far of 2014. Jayne Lockwood the author delivered an amazing story that had me hooked, as I write this brief comment I still have a smile on my face because I feel like very happy with the total package. I know the coverage at first glance would make you pass it by but once you start it I am telling you that you will not put it down. When I am reading a book if it does not grab my attention in the first two chapters then I know I am heading down hill fast. I cannot stress enough that if the author cannot keep you engage in their book then the author in my opinion has not done his or her job. This is a book that i can and will see myself reading over and over again. I highly recommend it." - Gracie Foster, Amazon Customer

"This is really good. Slick, fast-paced and written with a real sense of style. Without wishing to provide spoilers, it concerns the forbidden love affair between a hit-man and the sister of his willing victim. This is written by someone with a mature writing style who knows how to pace a plot and keep the reader hooked. It's not normally the type of book I read but I'll definitely be taking a closer look at the author. Really enjoyed it." - Truth42

"I read Deal Breaker, the first part of Closer than blood, a few months before downloading The Whole Story. I had really enjoyed Deal Breaker, but questioned how Lockwood could effectively follow what was a complete and well-rounded story in itself. Any doubts I had were soon exiled to Old Cynicism. From start to finish, Closer Than Blood has a twisted and intriguing plot that at times takes the reader to the edge of discomfort. The characters are deep and well-rounded when needed, and always have an edge to them. From the alluring Pagan Freemantle, to the odious Greg Roscoe, they are crafted and directed with great skill and imagination. The dialogue is realistic and congruent with the well-formed contexts. All of which goes to form a convincing and gripping story. A highly recommended read that will keep you guessing and entertained to the very end." - A J Sendall

"Like the plot but at the ending is a little too perfect to me. It feels like watching a James Bond movie." - Lida IaiPing Wan

"This is a story not for the faint hearted, with strong story lines and tough characters. Author Jayne Lockwood states that this is an alternative love story and she's not wrong there! For me, it beats hands-down your stereotypical love story yet it still features some of the popular formulas, e.g. 'will they-won't-they?'. There are fairly graphic sex scenes which I thought were well-written and add a lot of colour to the story, but as already mentioned - possibly not for the faint hearted. The characters and settings are very well-drawn and the story pulls together well. It's fast-paced, and very modern. I really enjoyed it." - ks0303

I've been writing for many years, starting out at County College of Morris in New Jersey with a course in Journalism. Since then I've published five novels for Black Lace Books under a pseudonym (Savannah Smythe) and one ghostwritten book for glamour celebrity, Abi Titmuss, in 2005 (10 Fantasies.) 

Also, I've published two M/M erotica stories as S. A. Smythe, Lexington Black and Docklands Diamond, both available on Amazon and Smashwords. Since then I’ve published The Cloud Seeker and Closer Than Blood, both romantic suspense novels under Hollow Hills Publishing. At the moment, I'm and I’m working on my third Jayne Lockwood novel. 

I draw from my experiences as an Englishwoman and my time in New Jersey. The area of the Chilterns where I grew up and where I live now is rich in inspiration, secrets and tales from the past. As an author, I have more stories inside me than time to write them!   

Finally, I also write book reviews for WROTE Podcast ( WROTE stands for WRitten On The Edge, and features authors and other creatives from the LGBTQ community. I’m very proud to be a part of this venture, which was started in 2014 by myself, S.A. Collins and Vance Bastian, both terrific authors and friends. The podcast is going from strength to strength, and is a great way of getting to know some fantastic LGBTQ writers and artists.


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1 comment:

  1. Hi Kim

    Thank you so much for the fantastic post about Closer Than Blood. It looks terrific and I'm so grateful for your help in spreading the world!

    Jayne x


Thanks for taking time to comment. It really makes my day to know you are enjoying my posts:)

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