Another #TeaserTuesday!

Here's another UNEDITED little sample from my current WIP (Let Me Love You). Still no release date yet. 

I stumbled through the front doors of Bijou Park, hoping, wishing, and praying that the black coffee and plain bagel in my hands would serve to appease my boss. Peter Park was a horrible person. Temperamental, demanding, flippant, but talented and at the top of the custom jewelry game. An internship with him was an anxiety-ridden thrill ride and an opportunity most aspiring jewelers would kill for. I just happened to walk in on the right day—the day he and his assistant-slash-girlfriend received a beat down at the hands of his wife, Twyla. He was bloody and in need of a new assistant. I took advantage of his desperation by adding a little custom jeweler training to the deal. I'd been assisting and training under him and his staff jewelers for a little under a year.
But today I was late.
Peter Park didn't do late—ever.
I nodded at Freda, the tall, ebony receptionist who could slay any fashionista even though she was in her sixties, and headed straight for the gold door with the silver lever handles that led into Mr. Park's office. I knocked, waited, and when the door swung open to reveal a livid Twyla, I thanked the heavens for my tardiness. Twyla was a certified fool and only showed up at Bijou Park when trouble was brewing between her and Mr. Park.
"Good morning, Mrs. Park," I offered.
Twyla flipped her forty-inch Remy hair extensions over her shoulder and clasped her hands to her wide hips. She was at least two inches taller and sixty pounds heavier than her Korean American husband, and a damn pit bull. Mean, jealous, violent, and destructive. Peter might have reigned terror down on his employees, but his wife reigned terror down on him. Oddly enough though, she liked me, probably because she didn't see me as a threat since I didn't dress or act like I was trying to catch a man—specifically, her man. However, I still hated being around her. With her drama-filled reality show antics, she made black women as a whole look bad.
"Jo, honey, give us a minute. I’m in the middle of reminding my husband of a few things."
I glanced behind her to see Mr. Park at his desk, his silky black hair disheveled, tie crooked, glasses askew. The contents of the top of his desk were littering the floor around it. I almost felt sorry for him.
But not quite.
"Uh...sure. I'll be in the back with Shirl."
"Mm-hmm." She shut the door in my face.
I scurried to the small office occupied by Shirlene Ramsey, the most tenured bench jeweler. Shirl's strength was making Peter Park's artistic visions a reality since he rarely got his hands dirty anymore, so to speak. She didn't design jewelry, but she was excellent at interpreting others' designs. My goal was to design and create, and I was fortunate to be able to see both sides of the process on a daily basis.
"She still on the warpath?" Shirl asked, when I dropped into a chair next to her work station.
"Yep. What'd he do this time? You know?"
Shirl glanced up from the piece she was working on and shook her head. "All I know is we had all barely made it through the front doors when she stormed in yelling and screaming, but I can guess what happened."
I could, too. Mr. Park loved black women, surrounded himself with us here at his company, and was a compulsive cheater despite the fact that Twyla always caught up with his infidelities. It was as if he refused to stop cheating on her and she refused to take their five daughters and leave him. He cheated; she beat his ass and tore up his office. Rinse and repeat. It was a wonder if the ridiculousness of it all didn't affect Bijou Park, but then again, half the clientele ordered custom pieces for their mistresses or side pieces. The relatability of Peter Park's life was probably what made the business so successful.
"You were late?" Shirl asked, her eyes on her diamond-drenched work again.
"Yeah...overslept. I didn't fall asleep until early this morning."
"Netflix or Hulu?"
I rolled my eyes at how predictably pathetic my life was. "Hulu. Watched a bunch of Top Chef episodes."
Her forehead creased as she carefully added another diamond to the eagle-shaped medallion. "I didn't know you liked to cook."
"I'm tryna learn how to cook."
"By watching Top Chef?"
I shrugged. "I've picked up some good tips from that show."
"Girl, you better be getting you a soul food cook book, so you can cook your way to a husband."
"Had one of those. I'm good."
"Humph. Okay..."

#TeaserTuesday - It's an excerpt!

I thought I'd let you all see what I've been up to. Here's an excerpt from Let Me Love You (tentative title), book 1 of my McClain Brothers series. It's unedited, subject to change, yada-yada-yada. Enjoy!!

Minutes later, I was in the backseat of a black Denali with heavily tinted windows with Oba in the front seat chatting with the driver on my way to—
“Hey, uh...Oba, who are we delivering this to?" I asked.
Oba shrugged while glancing back at me. "He didn't tell me."
I didn't ask the driver, because his old ass creeped me out. He reminded me of Samuel L. Jackson's character in Django Unchained—gray and ornery. I did, however, lift the lid and peek inside the box at the piece, one I'd seen Todd, another bench jeweler, working on. A puffed heart made of what appeared to be zillions of tiny diamonds on a platinum chain. It was brilliant and gorgeous.
What felt like forever later, we stopped in front of a boutique hotel, a really nice one, and I started feeling pissed about delivering this gorgeous piece of jewelry to some skank. Nevertheless, I slid out of the vehicle after the driver opened the door for me. Oba checked his phone, said, "Fifth floor. Penthouse suite," and then motioned for me to walk ahead of him.
I clutched the box nervously, wishing I had a bag to put it in because I was afraid I'd drop it and its contents before we made it to our destination. As if reading my mind, Oba said, "Hold on," reached into the front seat of the SUV, and unearthed a shiny black Bijou Park sack. I took it from him, carefully sliding the box inside.
Oba walked closely behind me as I stepped through the elegant lobby toward the elevators. My legs felt like rubber as the weight of what I was doing settled on my shoulders. I was delivering an insanely expensive piece of jewelry to someone, someone obviously rich and probably famous. What if someone had followed us from Bijou Park and tried to rob us? Sure, Oba was huge and armed, but what if a group of huge, armed dudes tried to rob us? What if they kidnapped me and held me for ransom and—the elevator dinged, making me jump, snatching me from my thoughts, and prompting me to step inside. Moments later, the doors opened, and after we exited the elevator, Oba had to give me a little nudge so I would start moving toward the only door in the hallway. A cavernous bassline grew louder and louder as I approached the door, and when I knocked timidly, I doubted it could be heard over the music.
Oba reached over my five-foot-two frame, which seemed even smaller in stature with his imposing one towering over me, and beat his fist against the door, startling me even though I saw him do it. I glanced up at him nervously. He gave me a shrug and a smirk.
The music was lowered and the door swung open. A man that damn near matched Oba in height and girth appeared with a scowl on his face. He and Oba were on opposite ends of the skin tone spectrum. Where Oba was dark as night, this man was extremely light-skinned with orangey-colored hair. He frowned down at me then let his eyes climb up to Oba. That's when a smile appeared on his face. As I stood there, he reached over my head and gave Oba dap. "'Sup, my nigga?!"
Oba was just as animated as he said, "Sup, Dunn?! You know…same ole grind. Shit, Park didn't tell me we were coming to see your guy. Wish I’da known. I ain't know what I was getting into."
"Who dat?" This querying voice came from inside the suite.
"Tell boss man Peter Park's folks are here with that piece," Dunn said.
"A'ight," answered the voice.
"Y'all come in," Dunn offered, and then he smiled at me. "O, man? Who we got here?"
I rolled my eyes before I could stop myself. Because I was running late this morning, I'd thrown on a pair of jeans and a loose t-shirt, didn't bother to apply a stitch of makeup so the freckles that I'd always hated were prominent on my face, and my wild natural hair was pushed away from my face with a thick, cloth headband. I didn't look hideous, but I wasn't displaying anything that made me worthy of his leer.
Before Oba could introduce me to Dunn and vice versa, the voice returned and I found it was attached to another behemoth of a man—all height and muscles like Oba and Dunn with a skin tone somewhere in between theirs. "Aye, the boss said y'all can go on back there," he announced, nodding toward a door deeper in the suite.
"A'ight, Tommy,” Oba said, looking from the voice to me. “Lead the way, Jo."
I swallowed and moved toward the door only to hear mumbling and snickering behind me, sure one or both of the two giants who evidently resided in that suite were looking at my ass. I rolled my eyes again.
Knocking on the door, I felt my heart begin to race. Who was this boss man of theirs? Was he rich and famous or just rich? Oba obviously knew who he was, because he was familiar with his security. I wished I had time to ask Oba who—
"Come in!" was yelled through the door.
I turned the knob and walked inside, stopping without giving Oba room to enter.
I recognized him instantly, but anyone would've since he was probably the most recognizable rapper on the planet. He wasn't old, only in his late thirties, but had been in the rap game for so long he was definitely considered one of the old heads at this point. Award-winning, multi-platinum-selling, world-renowned, skilled like no other, and fine as all hell. That's how I'd describe this man. I was shocked, pleasantly stunned into silence and paralysis.
He was shirtless and the swollen muscles of his chest and abdomen teased me as a sheet covered his lower body. He was sitting on the side of the bed, his blond-tipped dreads hanging loosely around his face. He wore a blank look on his sepia-toned face as I stood there unraveling in his presence.

No release date yet, because--ahem--I'm still writing it. I'll keep you posted!!

A Thursday Teaser from Stay with Me!

It's Thursday, I have a book release coming up, and I decided to share a little snippet to whet your reader appetite. 

This excerpt is from Stay with Me, Book 1 of the Strickland Sisters Series, and it releases on May 17, 2017. Enjoy!!

I slipped all the way out of my clothes and hopped in the shower, relishing in the hot water pouring over me as I lathered my skin with my favorite plumeria-scented body wash. About thirty minutes later, I’d pulled on my favorite old night shirt and climbed into bed, was on my way to La La Land when the sound of thumping bass jolted me out of my semi-slumber. More than a little disoriented, I rolled over, trying to figure out what was going on, what I was hearing, and why I was hearing it. Then it occurred to me.

Ryan Boyé.

I closed my eyes and sighed, grabbed my cell phone from the bedside table, and checked the time—1:00 AM. Really? Was this negro really blasting music at this time of night or morning or whatever?


And things were going so well.

I sat up and tried to mentally will this fool to turn his music down, because I really did not feel like having to walk over there and beat on his door to get him to do something his grown ass should’ve had sense enough to do anyway.

I waited for five whole minutes. I waited as the music thumped and the picture frame on my dresser vibrated, growing angrier by the second. I could’ve called him, but bump that. Instead, I stood up, released a frustrated groan, and threw a robe on over my night shirt. Barefoot and pissed the hell off, I left my place and stalked to his door, beating on it like I was the chief of police.

No answer.

Oh, hell no!

I kicked the door, and yelled, “Hey!”

The music stopped, and less than a minute later, the front door eased open to reveal a heavy-lidded Ryan Boyé, shirtless in a pair of red briefs, and from the looks of things, I had interrupted something or had awakened him from a very steamy dream, because ole boy was standing at attention. All of the moisture in my mouth traveled to my core. I shifted my weight on my feet and tore my eyes away from his groin, letting them amble over his muscular stomach and chest and finally settle on his eyes.

He raised his eyebrows. “Yes?”

Visit my website at to learn about my other books!

#SampleSunday from Real Love

Hi, all!! Been neglecting this blog, so in an attempt to do better, I'm sharing an excerpt from Real Love, Book 3 of my Love After series (coming soon). Enjoy!!

***Warning: excerpt contains explicit language***

We had been eating in silence for a few minutes before he said, “Damn, this pork roast is good! Your mama can cook her ass off!”
“She really can,” I agreed. “Why you think my ass is so big?” I added with a chuckle.
“I don’t see a damn thing wrong with your ass.”
I looked up at him. He was wearing this smoldering look that turned my insides to slush. I had to get the spotlight off of me. “Is that why you were looking at my ass at your grand opening?”
Surprise registered on his face. “You think I was looking at your ass?”
“Well, I know you didn’t recognize me from my hair, because that was a brand new wig I was wearing. I’d never worn that style before.”
He gave me a smile and shrugged. “Okay, guilty. I was looking at your ass, but who can blame me? You got a nice ass. I actually think it’s the nicest ass I’ve ever seen.”
Shit! “Really, now? My ass is all that?”
He set his fork down and leaned back in his chair. “Your ass is a damn work of art. I am very attracted to your ass, Denise. Very.
“Just my ass?”
“Shit, no! I’m rather fond of the total package—beautiful face and a body that won’t quit. Do you have any idea how fine you are?”
Not half as fine as your ass! “You got all those muscles, so I know you work out...”
“Every day.”
“So, if you’re into fitness, how you gonna be attracted to my fluffy-ass body?”
“Shit, I’m not tryna rub up against something hard like me. I like my women to feel like women—soft, smooth...I bet you would feel so good in my arms.”
I took a sip of water. It was getting hot as hell in there. Maybe I needed to turn the AC up. “Uh...are you coming on to me?”
“Do you want me to?”
“Honestly? Hell, yeah.”
“Good, then I’m coming on to you like a motherfucker.” 

Click the images below to catch up on the other two books in the series!!

#NewRelease - Heart of a Savage #sports #romance #newadult

Hey, readers!! I have a treat for you today!! Scroll below and be sure to 1-click this new release!!

Genre: Romance – New Adult, Sports
Release Date: January 31, 2017

About Heart of a Savage:

Bailey Ross-O'Malley has spent her whole life catering to others. She used to enjoy it. Until her father died. In an attempt to protect her, her father chose Connor to be her husband, but that was a mistake. Connor was supposed to love her, be her rock – but some rocks need to be tossed as far away as possible. She only has one source of happiness now, her son, and if Connor doesn't get his way, he'll take that joy from her as well.

MMA fighter, Dominic Prince, has only one mission in life: forget his past. Forget the pain, the drama, and the loss of things taken away from him too soon. He's guarded and secretive and that's the way he likes it. He was doing a damn good job of keeping it that way. Until her. Bailey showed up and Dominic’s life became a minefield. He can't decide if he wants to kiss her or shake her, but he does know that he'll fight to keep her safe. He'll be as savage as he is in the octagon, outside of it.

Neither of them wants to accept it happening, but the past has a way of sneaking into the present. Hearts will be shattered and bonds will be broken. Will they survive it?

About the Author

LaShanta Charles was born and raised in the small town of Orangeburg, SC. She has always been an avid reader of all genres, but Romance has always been her true love and is what inspired her to pursue a writing career. In high school, she began letting her classmates read the short stories that she would write and based off of their feedback, her passion for writing pushed her to become a published author. She published her debut novel, Lovely Lies, in 2013 and released the sequel, Lovely Lies 2, in February 2014. Her third novel, Splitting Karma, was released in October 2014. She lives in Yelm, WA, with her husband and three children and also serves in the US Army. She's a home body who enjoys SLEEPING, reading, SLEEPING, eating, SLEEPING, white chocolate mochas, SLEEPING, sexy alien romances, and of course, writing. Oh, and she hates spiders; they're extremely creepy, why do they need eight legs??

Connect with LaShaunta!!

#CoverReveal!!!! Higher Love

Hey, everyone!! I'm proud to share the cover for my novel, Higher Love!! 

Coming December 26, 2016. Now available for pre-order!!!

Pre-order link:

Setting the Mood - #amwriting

When you're writing about love and falling in love and making love, what do you do to get in the mood? What motivates you to push the story forward and create magical chemistry between your hero and heroine?  For me, it's music. There's nothing like a nice sensual tune to set the mood for me and my characters. The right song can be very effective in many ways.

Believe me.

What also helps is to light some candles, maybe even dim the lights (but not so much that you can't see to write). And voila! You're on your way to making your romantic scenes leap off the pages.

For today's post, I thought I'd share the tracks that I've kept on heavy rotation as I pen my novel. Enjoy!!

Groove With You by The Isley Brothers
Between the Sheets by The Isley Brothers
Sensuality Parts I and II by The Isley Brothers
Make Me Say it Again Girl by The Isley Brothers
(I know, I know...a lot of Isley Brothers, lol)

What's on your list? Let me know in the comments below!!

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