Cruel Paradise, the ruthless and steamy standalone in the Beautifully Cruel series from J.T. Geissinger, is available now!
1) A powerful and charismatic man lacking moral character
2) A magnificent bastard
3) Killian Black
You don’t know me. You think you do, but you don’t. The only thing you know is my name, and even that’s a lie.
I’m king of Boston, lord of criminals, ruler of an underworld empire.
Or am I?
Only one thing’s for sure: I operate alone.
Until I cross paths with a brazen little thief who sets my whole kingdom on fire.
Just as two wrongs don’t make a right, two villains don’t belong together. Especially since she’s the daughter of my most deadly enemy.
Taking her would start a war.
Keeping her would be suicide.
Making her mine would break every code of honor and defy all common sense.
Then again, where’s the fun in following the rules?
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I climb into the car. The driver shuts the door behind me. In a moment, we pull away.
All heat and coiled tension, Liam simmers in the seat beside me.
After we’ve gone three blocks, he says, “How long are you going to make me wait until you look at me?”
“I’m working on regulating my breathing so I don’t pass out. Maybe ten minutes?”
His chuckle is low and sensual, raising my blood pressure by at least two hundred points.
“You’re tougher than that. I’ll give you ten seconds.”
When the seconds have ticked by, I turn my head and glance at him warily from the corner of my eye.
He stares at me with such blistering intensity that for a moment, I can’t breathe.
His voice husky, he says, “Hullo again.”
Holy mother of god, he’s handsome. How can someone so evil be so hot?
My exhalation comes out in a burst. It’s accompanied by a shudder. Then I clear my throat and pretend I’m a mentally functioning adult. “Hi.”
He lets his gaze drift over me, head to toe, taking in every aspect of my clothing, posture, and expression.
“You still don’t trust me.”
I make a sound that’s supposed to be a laugh, but it sounds more like a small animal being strangled. “Trust? I’m sorry, did you just say trust?”
He’s serious. I stare at him in astonishment. “Of course I don’t trust you! You’re…you!”
The driver pipes in from the front seat. “That’s hardly fair, lass. You’ve only just met.”
Through gritted teeth, Liam says, “Declan.”
“Right. Sorry.” Falling silent, he turns his attention back to the road.
Liam smiles reassuringly at me. “It’s so hard to find good help these days.”
I look back and forth between them, gobsmacked by the whole situation. I could be hallucinating. Maybe that hipster bartender put something into my drink.
I’m still pondering that when Liam leans over and settles his huge, hot hand around my throat.
I grip his thick wrist in both hands, gasping and shrinking back into the seat.
Looking into my eyes, he murmurs, “I’m not going to hurt you.”
My voice comes out high and panicked. “This is a shitty way of proving that.”
“I’m not trying to choke you, lass.”
It’s true, the pressure of his hand on my throat is gentle, but still. “Then what the hell are you doing?”
He slides his thumb back and forth over the throbbing vein in my neck. “Feeling your pulse.”
Heart hammering, I stare at him. “Why?”
“Because I want to see how fast it gets when I kiss you.”
I freeze. “Don’t you dare.”
He quirks one dark brow. “Why not?”
“I don’t want you to.”
He leans closer, his eyes burning into mine, his body heat and the warm scent of his skin surrounding me. He growls, “If you were telling the truth, little thief, I’d honor that request.”
I blurt, “I’m not ready for that!”
Instantly, he stills. His dark gaze searches my face. Then, slowly, his full lips lift into a smile. “Then I suppose I’ll have to wait until you are.”
He stares hungrily at my mouth for a moment before releasing me.
I remain where he left me, frozen and wide-eyed, slumped against the door, staring at him and trying to convince myself of several important facts.
One, that I should be afraid. Because, two, that there’s at least a fifty-fifty chance he’s going to snap my neck. And three, that I really didn’t want him to kiss me.
Especially that I didn’t want him to kiss me. Because what would it say about my sanity if I did?
Adjusting his tie and looking straight forward, he says, “Don’t overthink it. But thank you for being honest. If this is going to work, we have to be honest with each other.”
My laugh is weak and disbelieving. “This? There is no ‘this!’”
He turns his head and sears me with his gaze. “Aye, lass,” he says, his voice thick. “There is.”
About J.T. Geissinger
J.T. Geissinger is a #1 internationally bestselling author of emotionally charged romance and women’s fiction. Ranging from funny, feisty rom coms to intense, edgy suspense, her books have sold millions of copies and been translated into several languages, including German, Hebrew, French, Czech, and Japanese. The film & TV rights to her Night Prowler series have been optioned by the BAFTA-winning studio that created VFX for movies such as Avatar, X-Men, and The Avengers.
She is a three-time finalist in both contemporary and paranormal romance for the RITA® Award, the highest distinction in romance fiction from the Romance Writers of America®. She is also a recipient of the Prism Award for Best First Book and the Golden Quill Award for Best Paranormal/Urban Fantasy.
She’s a Southern California native currently living in Nevada with her husband and rescue kitty, Zoe.
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