By Lisabet Sarai
Welcome to my Revelry! Thanks for helping me to celebrate the release of my steampunk BDSM ménage erotic romance Rajasthani Moon, a slightly over-the-top tale of politics and espionage, with plenty of nifty gadgets, a kick-ass heroine, and two swoon-worthy heroes.
I’ve written a couple of steam punk short stories for anthologies, but this is my first full length book in the genre. Actually, that’s a bit surprising, since I’ve been in love with this strange meld of science fiction and Victoriana for as long as I can remember – long before steampunk even had a name. When I was in high school, I devoured H.G. Wells and H. Rider Haggard, and shared a Sherlock Holmes obsession with my dad. Later, I marveled at Neal Stephenson’s The Diamond Age and a couple of years ago, I discovered Gordon Dahlquist’s fantastic The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters. I’ve always felt an affinity for the Victorian period. I was wearing high-necked blouses with cameos, long flowing skirts, and lace-up boots in my teens, long before they were fashionable. (The corsets came later…!) With my long hair parted in the middle and pulled back into a bun, I could well have been one of my own heroines.
Imagination is the hallmark of steampunk. With Rajasthani Moon, I decided to let mine run free. The book is set in India. It features a bandit prince, a Rajah who’s an engineering genius, a vindictive Maharani, a werewolf curse and quite a lot of kinky sex.
Here’s the blurb:
Neither kink nor curse can stop a woman with a mission.
Cecily Harrowsmith, secret agent extraordinaire, is a woman on a mission. When the remote Indian kingdom of Rajasthan refused to remit its taxes to the Empire, Her Majesty imposed an embargo. Deprived of the energy-rich mineral viridium, essential for modern technology and development, Rajasthan was expected to quickly give in and resume its payments. Yet after three years, the rebellious principality still has not knuckled under. Cecily undertakes the difficult journey to that rugged, arid land in order to determine just how it has managed to survive, and if possible to convince the country to return to the Empire’s embrace. Instead, she’s taken captive by a brigand, who turns out to be the ruler’s half-brother Pratan, and delivered into the hands of the sexy but sadistic Rajah Amir, who expertly mingles torture and delight in his interrogation of the voluptuous interloper.
Cursed before birth by Amir’s jealous mother, Pratan changes to a ravening wolf whenever the moon is full. Cecily uncovers the counter-spell that can reverse the effects of the former queen’s hex and tries to trade that information for her freedom. Drawn to the fierce wolf-man and sympathising with his suffering, she volunteers to serve as the sacrifice required by the ritual—offering her body to the beast. In return, the Rajah reveal Rajasthan’s amazing secret source of energy. In the face of almost impossible odds, Cecily has accomplished the task entrusted to her by the Empire. But can she really bear to leave the virile half-brothers and their colourful land behind and return to the constraints of her life in England?
You can buy the book at your favorite online store:
(TEB can send books directly to your Kindle or Nook.)
Below you’ll find a PG excerpt from Rajasthani Moon. After you read it, be sure to play the Two Chops crossword puzzle that follows, then submit your score to Rafflecopter using the link provided. Every one who enters will receive a special ebook edition of my story Green Cheese, a romantic steampunk fantasy set in Thailand.
One lucky individual will win a classic brushed brass steampunk bracelet and $10 gift certificate to the Coffee Time Romance Book Store. I’d love it if you left a comment, too!
Your money and your jewels,” he growled in Hindi. “Quick now!”
Cecily lowered her gaze, feigning modesty. Meanwhile, she tightened her hand into a fist to release the knife. Nothing happened.
Her fall must have damaged the mechanism. Bloody machines…
And, in the interim, the bandit had produced his own much longer blade, which he now held to her throat. “Do you understand me, woman?” He switched to Rajasthani. When she still didn’t respond, he tried Gujarati. “Give me your valuables. Now!” Apparently losing patience, he plucked the gold hoop from her left earlobe with his other hand, while still pressing the cold steel against her skin.
Ow!” she protested as the wire tugged at her flesh before pulling free.
“Aha! You can speak after all!” He glanced around the plush interior, no doubt noting brocaded cushions, the silver tea service, the crystal goblets secured to the wall in their polished wood racks. “You look like you’re loaded, lady. Give me your purse before I get tired of waiting and slit your lovely throat.” Despite her Indian costume and the dusky complexion she’d inherited from her Ceylonese mother, the brigand addressed her in English this time, probably cued by the obvious provenance of the artefacts that surrounded her. The clarity of his pronunciation surprised her.
Sprawled on the floor, tangled in her clothing, Cecily glared up at him. A swathe of dark cloth wrapped around his head hid everything but his deep brown eyes. Sheltering under elegantly arched eyebrows, those eyes glittered with malice and craft. He had long, lush eyelashes that any woman would envy and a high forehead that bespoke considerable intelligence. A brute, no doubt, but scarcely dumb. She’d have to move with the utmost care.
If you will put somewhat more distance between your blade and my flesh,” she began, keeping her voice sweet and level, “I will be able to reach my money. It’s pinned into my waistband.”
The bandit’s eyes flicked to her bare midriff. She let her hand drift down towards the concealed pistol as though she were about to extricate a hidden pouch of coins.
Before she could reach her goal, he shot out his hand, catching her wrist in an iron grip. “Allow me.”He slipped his dagger into a sheath slung across his chest, then grabbed her other wrist and pinned it with the first. His hand was large enough to encircle both of hers.
Now, then…” He trailed his fingertips across the naked gap between her blouse and her skirt. Electricity sizzled up Cecily’s spine. The next thing she knew, he slid his hand under the fabric of her skirt, rooting around for items more solid than her soft, round belly.
He groped for a moment, while she held her breath. His calloused fingers struck sparks from her flesh. Of course, he discovered her weapon almost instantly. He drew it out, chuckling once more when he saw its size. Her skin mourned the loss of his touch.
What a surprise! A gun instead of the promised gold.” He tightened his hold on her wrists until she feared the bones would snap. “Who are you, my lady? Not, I think, a common traveller.”
“That’s none of your concern…sir.” Cecily decided that it might be wise to be polite.
“Oh, I think it is. Not many women travel on their own across the wastes of my country, especially in the most modern of conveyances. Those that do are wise to carry a weapon—but this one will not help you. Who sent you, madam? What is your business here?”
“I’ll not share my business with a common brigand.”
“And if I were someone else? Would you tell me then how and why you happen to cross my path?”
Cecily of course had a cover story. Her documents attested that she was the sister of a wealthy Bombay textile merchant, come to Rajasthan looking for business contacts. She was not, however, about to divulge anything to this rogue.
“I will tell you nothing.”
“Indeed? I think I may be able to change your mind.” After tucking the pistol into the folds of his garment, he drew out a length of what, aside from its strange silvery colour, looked like common rope. He dangled it near her trapped wrists. “Bind,” he said.
The rope came alive, coiling like a snake. Quick as a cobra strike, it looped itself around her forearms—once, twice, half a dozen times, pulling tighter with each cycle. Before she could devise a plan, Cecily found her crossed arms were laced together as firmly as the back of a corset.
“How dare you? Untie me at once!”
“So that you can stab me? Or shoot me? Who knows what other cunning devices you have hidden about your charming person? No, on the contrary, I think I’d be wise to bind your legs as well.”
Thanks for reading! If you’re looking for more heat, you can find an explicit excerpt from the book at http://www.lisabetsarai.com/rajasthaniex.html. In any case, please do join in our revelry by trying to complete the Two Chops puzzle (it’s easy and fun) and then submitting your score to Rafflecopter.
Remember, everyone who enters gets a copy of the ebook Green Cheese!
Now let the fun begin!
For instructions on how to play the Two Chops Crossword game, go to http://www.screencast.com/t/RMknNWj6er
To play the game, click on the button below.
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