Saturday, April 23, 2011

Exploring The World From My Desk

Our guest today is the fabulous Melissa Bradley of Melissa's Imaginarium Blog. She's also an amazing author and a regular commenter here at Three Wicked Writer's Plus Two. We're happy to have her here with us today sharing her new release from the Amber Heat line at Amber Quill Press, Byzantine Provocateur!

Welcome Melissa!

One of the main reasons I love to write is also the same reason I love to read. I adore being able to travel to distant lands, meet intriguing people and explore other cultures. I’m a poor chick from the south side of Chicago so my wallet doesn’t exactly run to exotic destination fare, if you know what I mean. Even when it is, I’m hard pressed to travel because I don’t always have enough vacation time. So I travel when I write and read. In my mind’s eye, I’ve been to Paris, Lisbon, Tokyo, Shanghai, Dubai, Sydney and Easter Island, along with many, many other places including far off planets. Researching a destination and world-building fills a need inside me to know and explore all these myriad realms.

In my latest, Byzantine Provocateur, I journey to Istanbul, an ancient city that was once the center of commerce between Europe and Asia as it straddles both continents. It is a place renowned for friendly people, coffee, carpets and one of the world’s oldest bazaars. I have always wanted to visit Istanbul, seeing the pictures of the Aya Sofia and the Galata Tower in my social studies book fascinated me. Later on, I read about whirling dervishes, the Spice Market and the Pera Palace hotel where Agatha Christie used to stay and I fell more in love with the city. I dreamed of maybe traveling here and finding a spellbinding romance. How could I not write about it, use it as a backdrop for one of my own tales?

My character, Thalia, gets the chance of a lifetime when she reconnects with a college friend who invites her to visit her home in this amazing city. I am so excited to be able to bring you this story. It is a tale of my heart to be sure.

What about you? Are there places you love to travel to while reading? A favorite destination you love to share using your words?

Byzantine Provocateur

Amber Quill Press/Amber Heat

ISBN 978-1-61124-072-6


An ancient city sparks forbidden desire…
Thalia Burton arrives in Istanbul to relax and enjoy the company of her old friend. Hoping to forget the boring rut her life had become, she never imagines one meeting with Fadi's brother re-igniting the dim flame of passion inside her. Captivated by the heat in his golden eyes, Thalia finds herself tempted beyond reason...
Murat Bahar had only intended to meet Thalia as a courtesy to his family. One look at the lovely American incinerates his intentions. She is an exquisite morsel he longs to taste, a taboo treat enthralling him like a siren of myth. Perhaps just one night…
Once is not enough. Thalia and Murat embark on a fiery, secret affair that could burn them both, costing them friends and family.


Thalia and Murat are getting together for the very first time…

He caressed her in slow circles, kneading and rubbing her from breasts to belly. She quivered from the heat of his hand through the cotton of her shirt. Her breath hitched as he inched lower and lower. Palming her through her cargo pants, he massaged, squeezing and pressing until she thought she’d die.
Pliant and wanton, she dropped her head to his shoulder, undulating, pushing into his touch. Her blood sizzled, every cell in her body clamoring for him to be inside her and he hadn’t even started to remove her clothes. She whimpered, digging her nails into his forearm.
His lips curved in a smile against her neck. “Please…what?”
She inhaled sharply as he flicked open the button of her trousers.
“This?” He nipped her earlobe. “Or this?” Oh-so-slowly, he eased down her zipper, then teased a finger along the top of her panties.
She dragged in a breath. “I…I…”
Back and forth, he rubbed, skimming the top of her mound. She sagged against him, knees bent, thighs parting to give him better access.
Continuing to tease her, he reached up with his other hand up to cup her breast, rolling her nipple between thumb and forefinger. A wave of desire slammed through her and she cried out as he worked the hardened nub through the barrier of fabric.
Her vision clouded. “Murat!”
“Shh. This is only the beginning. We have plenty of time to play.”
She shuddered in frustration, wanting nothing more than to be flat on her back with him sliding inside her, bringing her to a volcanic climax. Something she hadn’t gotten from a lover in a long time. On the ragged edge, she tried to maneuver out of his embrace, take control.
He scraped his teeth over the nape of her neck and smacked her rear.
Hayir, no,” he rasped.
Clamping his hands to her hips, Murat walked her to the bed, the hard promise of his erection burning into her lower back. He ripped the duvet from the bed, scattering pillows, then pushed her onto the mattress.
Thalia sat stunned as Murat knelt between her thighs. What is he doing?
“The first time with a new lover should be a symphony of bliss, a journey to be savored.”

Author Links


Tess MacKall said...

Putting myself in the shoes of the characters is why we all read. Only the wealthy get to see much of this big old world. Istanbul sounds fascinating. I've always wanted to see the Pyramids.

sighhhh someday. But that day better hurry up before I'm dead! lol

Love the sound of this book, Melissa. It's on my TBR list!

Regina Carlysle said...

I think it's awesome to be able to travel to distant lands IN OUR MINDS. Hey, I've even traveled to the past! How cool is that? LOL

Love the excerpt Melissa. This will do GREAT! So glad you came over to visit with us today.

C. Zampa said...

Ohh....I love stories set in far away places, places I can never physically go. But with reading and writing, I CAN go there.

This book sounds fabulous, I've always been intrigued by Istanbul!

Enjoyed your blog!

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Unknown said...

@Regina Time travel is the mind's eye is definitely a huge plus for writing and reading. Thank you so much, I'm glad you liked the excerpt. I was torn about which one to include. I loved being here today, this blog is always so much fun.

Unknown said...

@Tess I love the Pyramids as well. They are on my bucket list for sure, but I hope that I'll get there sooner rather than later. LOL

Thank you so much, 3WW is a fave blog of mine. I'm so happy you love my story. Murat and Thalia had been poking in my brain for a long time.

Unknown said...

@C With our writing and reading, destinations are limitless. No budgets and vacation days to worry about. We can just go. Thank you so much for your words. I'm glad you enjoyed my post.

J.L. Campbell said...

I'm in awe of writers who set novels in places they haven't been to, especially if they're far way locations like Egypt. Now that's somewhere I'd like to visit one of these days!

Sizzling excerpt, Melissa.

Marie Tuhart said...

Great post, Melissa. I love stories set in places I hope to someday travel to.

✗✗ said...

OOoo this sounds like an amazing book!! The excerpt alone was fantastic! I don't read books often, I know that sounds horrible but school keeps me pretty occupied with reading assignments. However I will have to make time for this!!

Marie Rose Dufour said...

I love that as a reader or a writer I can go to places that I have always wanted to go to on my "beer budget". That was a great excerpt, I can't wait to read the rest. ;)

DEZMOND said...

spicy and exotic just as we like it :)
Melissa has also been an amazing person and a lovely friend beside writing wicked and naughty books to take us into fantastic worlds of passion and imagination.

Unknown said...

J.L. Thank you so much for the wonderful comments. I would love to go to Egypt myself. It's a fascinating country.

Unknown said...

Hi Marie Thank you for stopping by. I hope to get to Istanbul myself one day. I talked with someone who has been there many times and it sounds so magical.

Unknown said...

@Nicole You made me so happy. I love when people tell me that will make an exception for my stories. I can see how school would keep you o your toes. Good luck with all of your classes.

Unknown said...

@Marie Rose Hi, thank you so much for the comment. Books certainly do extend that beer budget nicely. I'm so happy you enjoyed the excerpt.

Unknown said...

@Dez Thank you so much sweetheart. Your words have given me cause for huge smiles right now.

Julia Phillips Smith said...

Ah...'a symphony of bliss'...sounds irresistable!

There are quite a few places I'm dying to visit in real life. Wales, Scotland and England top the list, along with Saint Petersburg in Russia, Sweden and Vienna in Austria.

Unknown said...

@Julia Ooh, your places are on my list, too. I wish I had a real Star Trek transporter so I could go to each and every destination I imagine. Thank you so much for the support.

Unknown said...

Whew! I need a fan! Hot stuff, Melissa! I love the setting too. Sounds like a wonderful read!

Unknown said...

@Pk Thank you so very much! I do like to spice things up. ;)

FilmMattic said...

I always put myself in the shoes of my favorite athletes. Derek Jeter during the World Series, Michael Jordan during the NBA finals, Barry Sanders during the...well, just during the regular season when he launches one of his patented 80 yard runs.

And of course, I'd love to inhabit any of my favorite movie characters like Indiana Jones.

Great post about your wonderful book!

Lily Harlem said...

Lovely post - Istanbul is a wonderful place and it is such a treat to have books that take us to exotic destinations. Its a form of time travel to sit in your own home and be existing in your imagination elsewhere :-)

I adore setting my stories in the UK, but often head off to places I have holidayed, particularly the USA. Though recently I went to Thailand - may have to write a sexy story about the beautiful beaches there.

Lily x

Unknown said...

@Matt I love to imagine myself as my fave athletes as well. In the skates of Jonathon Toews as he drives for the OT score, Brian Urlacher as he lunges at Aaron Rodgers to block that Packers pass. And oh yeah do I ever wish I could be Ripley taking on those Aliens or Sarah Conner battling the T1000.

Thank you so very much for the comments and support.

Unknown said...

@Lily Thank you! I love sitting all comfy in my big chair while in my mind I'm trudging through a steamy jungle.

I love visiting the UK, but Thailand sounds like an exotic treat. I would love to read something set there and hope you do write one.

Clare London said...

Hi Melissa :). Sorry I missed your blog day, I was away over Easter. And, unfortunately, not anywhere as exciting as in your stories! I think you've summed up beautifully why we read - to visit another world or place or character - or all of them together :). Thanks for giving us a taste of the exotic.

Mia Watts said...

This is awesome! I rarely see books that dare to travel outside the US. Well, done you!