Thursday, June 03, 2010

Big Huge Reader Contest - Day 3!

Caged by Diana DeRicci
Buy eBook from Purple Sword Publications
Erotic Shapeshifter/Science Fiction Romance

A cat shifter trying to fit into a world that didn't start as hers. The man who would love and protect her with everything he had.

Mira never expected to find the one man she would grow to trust and love among the human men. Living with humans had grown to be a skill for the Felids. So long as they didn't expose themselves, they were safe.

Rhys never thought he'd find the love of his life or that she would turn out to be an alien cat shifer. What she could do with her shape was amazing. He vowed to protect her and her people.

Unfortunately, someone has learned of their existence, and is hunting for Mira.


Mira watched his sleeping form with unblinking eyes. Steady breaths made his chest and shoulders rise and fall. She’d only recently realized she liked to watch him when he was this relaxed. He was a hard worker, constantly doing something at the house, or concentrating on something at work. His mind rarely slowed down, except for sleep. All that energy kept his lean body trim. His own version of weightlifting kept him toned. She licked her lips.

Rhys was a walking god. Dark brown hair and luscious eyes, he was always able to make her heart race. Even sitting in the chair across the room by the window, simply watching him sleep, he drove her crazy to be near him. Their relationship hadn’t started out on the best foot, but they’d somehow managed to survive each other. The first thing she’d wanted to do was run, then kill him and then run had become an option, because he’d discovered her secrets. How quickly she found out he was a man who was worthy of her secrets.

Burying her sigh in the crook of her arm where it rested on her lifted knee, she let her gaze wander to stare out the window again. It was afternoon. He was due back at work the next day. Their weekend away at his grandfather’s cabin in the Catskills was a total disaster.

Because of her. She winced, toying with the rolled seam edge of the chair cushion between her fingers. How had they known to set the net? Rhys was right. What was the chance that a cheetah would be found in the mountains?

In this form, unless she needed blood, she was undetectable. She bled red, the same as a human, only her blood never lost its red oxygenated color. She didn’t have a blue vein in her body anywhere. So maybe she wasn’t exactly like a human, but whoever noticed had to be damned close to catch the difference.

Except for Rhys, no one ever had been.

Felids were home schooled or tutored, because they couldn’t pass the blood work needed for public schools. They didn’t need the vaccinations because of their immunity, so that was another strike against them, though none had ever been infected by the many ailments that seemed to plague mankind. Fitting in had never been easy, regardless.

There weren’t only the public aversions, but the cat needed to run. That was essential. A cat with cabin fever grew cranky and hard to control. Mature Felids could control the cat easier, but it still wasn’t a pleasant experience for the Felid, or anyone they were cooped up with.

That was why Rhys had taken her north. Since admitting to their bond and letting the relationship happen, she’d been pacing the townhouse for weeks. His grandfather’s cabin should have been perfect, a long way out of the city. Secluded. Unknown. But someone had known.

Then a thought occurred to her. Something he’d said…only them, not with the family. He was right. Who knew the two of them were going there for the weekend? No one else in his family knew her secrets. He’d glossed over a lot of her background and childhood with his mother, refusing to divulge anything she wouldn’t say on her own. Rubbing her chin on her knee, she knew she loved him for that alone.

The world outside the window was mostly quiet. The suburb where his townhome was located was well out of the inner city. Birds flew from tree to tree, chirping and discussing their moment to moment. Squirrels raced up and down large elms and oaks, their brown tails fluffy banners of their passing.

A tiger trotting down the sidewalk would create havoc and terror, she was sure of it, though the idea of doing it still brought a smile to her, just because it would be interesting to say the least.

Her brow scrunched as she tried to sift through memories and possibilities. Had someone discovered what she was, what they were, and were hunting for them, like Rhys feared? She wasn’t sure how many Felids still existed, only the five from her home pod. She knew there had been over a hundred on the initial mission sent to Earth, but beyond that, much of what had been was lost to memory. To help the younger generations integrate easier, the elders had even ceased using their own language. As different as a sponge to a turnip, the Felids had managed to hide among the humanoid race, though their biology and anamorphic ability set them apart irrefutably.

Laying a cheek on the crook of her arm, she wished she had answers to what had spurred yesterday morning’s capture. Maybe it was simply because she was a cheetah caught in the Catskills. Though the net had to have been set well in advance. Was she a catch that had caught them by surprise? What else had they expected to trap? And why by the cabin? Mira rubbed her face trying to replay yesterday morning. She was going to get a headache trying to understand what had happened. The longer her mind ran in circles, the tighter that circle shrunk, giving her no answers. Maybe she wasn’t the only one using the area for a running ground and had been captured instead of another Felid.

Or maybe they were just cruel, heartless poachers really only out for whatever was caught in their net.

She must have made their jaws drop, she thought. Either way, now that someone knew there were cheetahs in the Catskills, people would be combing the range looking for more—or just for her.

A sigh drew her attention to the conked out man lying on his side on their bed. Considering the day before, the long night and that morning, he was probably exhausted. She hoped someday to have children with him. It wasn’t easy, but it wasn’t impossible either, as previous couples had discovered. Their humanoid DNA was close enough to merge and essentially create a hybrid, but the Felid remained dominant. She hoped their species never lost that uniqueness. She could imagine children with his solid shoulders and his eyes. Cloud gray and brown, like winter bark.

Mira followed his hand when it appeared from beneath the sheet at his hips. His fingers spread and wove down his chest to linger over his flat stomach. Her pulse hitched, and she was unable to look away. Flicking upward, his eyes were still shut. She wondered if he were asleep, or if he knew she was watching every single motion he made.

Compelled to follow that wicked hand, she watched as it drifted over his pecs to inch beneath the sheet edge, where the noticeable bulge created by his erection was impossible to miss.

“You’re evil,” she teased him, knowing without a doubt he was awake, and was aware of her captivation.

“No, I’m trying to be tempting,” he told her. “I’m all alone in this bed.” His lips stopped moving to form a slight pout.
Buy eBook from Purple Sword Publications

Diana DeRicci Website / Diana Castlilleja Website

Commenting and/or asking questions on an author’s blog for the day will enter you into the Big Huge Reader Contest for a Pink Sony eReader or one of three boxes packed full of RT Booklovers Convention goodies. Unfortunately, due to the grand prize being an electronic and weight of the other three boxes, this contest is for US residents only.


Anonymous said...

Ooooh, a cat shifter...yummy!!!

This looks like a great read. Hawt!!!

in Germany

Jean P said...

Shifter stories are always an enjoyable read. Look forward to checking this one out.

Suzette said...

I agree. I love shifter stories and although dragons are my fave, cats rank high too.

Selena Illyria said...

Hi Di! I love this book. *Grin*

Tilly Greene said...

Beautiful opening paragraph, Diana! I love learning about his energy while he sleeps - beautiful :-)


Diana Castilleja said...

Hi Val! Thanks for stopping by!

Thanks Jean. This was my first cat story. I liked it, doubt it'll be my last.

Suz! Hey! Thanks for commenting.

Se *tackle hug*

Thank you so much Tilly!

anny cook said...

What a wonderful excerpt and a great idea...shifter aliens. Excellent.

Selena Illyria said...

Omph! Di,I need to breathe. LOL

Diana Castilleja said...

Really? Breathing is sooo overrated. *blink* LOL!!!

Selena Illyria said...

Yup, breathing is necessary for me to do things like, writing and stuff. You know the little things. :-p

Deb830 said...

Hi Diana -

This sounds like a good read. I really enjoy shifter books. I went to your site to read the excerpt but kept getting a link error.

deb ;0)

psyche.soul said...

Hi Di,
Got this one and so excited to start reading...
Love you babe
April Riley

Pamk said...

whoohoo alien cat shifters. My two favorite things. Only thing that would make it better is he was a cat shifter too. I would love to have a tiger/panter/cougar of my own to pet rofl.
scrtsbpal at yahoo dot com

yadkny said...

Hi Diana,
Great excerpt, but I wish it was just a tad longer though;) *sigh*
I absolutely love shifter stories and can't wait to read this one.

yadkny said...

Oh, btw great cover!

Nancy G said...

The only thing I enjoy more than cat shifter stories, is dragons shifters (and vamps and werewolves, and....) Okay, truth is I just love paranormal romance in all its forms.

Judy said...

Great excerpt!! Of course, I love shifter books and especially cats!!
This does look like a great read.


Sandy said...

Hey, Diana, long time no see.

I love cats and shifters are wonderful.


joder said...

This is a great excerpt! Very sexy and can't wait to see what happens next. I enjoy shifter stories and the big cats are one of my faves.

joderjo402 AT gmail DOT com

Diana Castilleja said...

Deb, I'm sorry about that. I realized this morning that all my links are down. :( I switched hosting this week and totally blanked doing the links. I hope to have them up after the weekend.

April, man I love you man. *wink* Enjoy!

Thanks Pam! There might be one on the horizon. Obligations first. LOL

Yadkny, thanks so much. Once I get my links straightened out, the first chapter of all my books are available through my sites. I hope you stop by. And thanks Re: the cover! The kitty is an awesome shot.

Thank you Nancy and Judy!

Sandy! *Hugs*

Thank you Joder! Glad you could stop by.

Jane said...

Congrats on the new release, Diana. Loved the excerpt of "Caged."

janie1215 AT excite DOT com

Diana Castilleja said...

Thank you Jane! Glad you enjoyed it.

Anne said...

I enjoyed the excerpt. I like shifter stories in general.

Purple Sword Publishing is new to me, I'll have to check them out. Interesting name (or is it just me?) for an erotic romance publisher.

CrystalGB said...

Sounds great. I love cat shifters. :)

Armenia said...

Nice excerpt. And oh, I just love shifters. Sounds like a great story.

armiefox at yahoo dot com

Cathy M said...

Love shifter stories Diana, so on the wish list it goes.

caity_mack at yahoo dot com

Anonymous said...

I would love to read this one to see if Rhys really is "evil"

booklover0226 said...

OH, what a great excerpt. And you ended it knowing we would want more! LOL

I look forward in reading this and your other works, Diana.

Tracey D
booklover0226 at gmail dot com

s7anna said...

Oh I'm all about shifter romances! I can't wait to check this one out.

Canadian resident

Diana Castilleja said...

Hi Anne... LOL Yeah, when Traci started PSP it was tongue in cheek humor.

Hi Crystal! Hi Armenia! Thank you both for stopping by.

Hi Joye! Good to see you again.

Thank you Cathy.

Hi Tracey and Anna, thank you both for sharing today.

practimom said...

Oh this looks so good! i can't wait to read it! What else are you working on? any sequels?

Christy M

Booksrforever123 said...

ohhh, a cat shifter-love shifters and I get extremely tired with all the wolfies being the only ones out there. Gotta add to my wishlist.

Anonymous said...

Love the cover!!
deslauree3 at aol dot com

Diana Castilleja said...

Hi Christy. There is potential for a sequel with one of the characters in Caged moving forward. It's been tossed around.

Booksrforever123, thanks for reading I hope you enjoyed this little snip.

Thanks Desi!

Stephanie said...

Ooo Cats and alien ones at that!! Definitely looks a must-have read! Thanks for sharing today.

Diana Castilleja said...

Hi Stephanie! Glad you enjoyed it. :)

Diane Pollock said...

Haven't tried a shifter story yet, this will be my first!

Anonymous said...

Val what a great shifter book especially since it involves cats!

Sue A. said...

Being a cat person, I think cat shifter stories are the best!

Anonymous said...

omg, this looks awesome :) Thanks for the excerpt... I need to go out and get this :)

etirv said...

Hi Diana! Sounds great! I will check this out!


Sherry said...

I love shifter books and this one sounds very good it sounds like it's a little different than other ones but very good.

Carol L. said...

Love the cover. And the tease of this excerpt, well the only thing to do is buy it and find out what happens next with his pout.:)
Carol L.

Andrea I said...

I sure do like Cat shifters.

Anonymous said...

I lov ebooks with shifters! This one sounds great.

Lovie said...

Glad to find another shapeshifter author.

Rosie said...

I would buy this simply for the cover. But the story sounds great and I will definitely buy this one.

Tina said...

you know I never thought tighy whities would be that sexy! I love shifters how do you come up with the fresh new spins on them?

flchen1 said...

What a delicious excerpt, Diana! Thanks for sharing!

f dot chen at comcast dot net

Anonymous said...

oh the premise on this one sounds great - ty for the excerpt as well! I enjoy shifters so will have to check this one out :).

Pam S

Nicole Zoltack said...

Who doesn't love shifter stories?

Nicole.Zoltack AT