Title: Blue Moon by Lisa Kessler
Moon Series Book Six
Publisher: Entangled Publishing
Imprint: Select Otherworld
Genre: Paranormal, Romance
Length: 236 pages
Falling for her means losing everything…
She’s his muse, his mate, and she’s completely off-limits.
He’s a jerk, a recluse, and her newest assignment.
Until he broke her heart, Vivianna Lopez loved Logan Reynolds.
Five years later, she’s an aspiring music journalist and he’s the camera-shy lead singer of Logan and the Howlers.
Armed with a backstage pass, Vivi’s back in her hometown of Reno, nestled in the shadows of the Sierra Nevada mountains. She must score an interview with Logan to land her dream job – otherwise it’s back to Boston, with no scoop and no job. It’s just business–at least that’s what she keeps telling herself.
Logan still loves Vivi, his soul mate, but there’s something even she doesn’t know about him: He turns into a werewolf every full moon and a secret organization is hunting down his Pack.
Vivi may not have Logan’s senses, but she can sniff out that he’s hiding something. He knows it’s only a matter of time before the truth about him – and his Pack – is revealed.
And then he really will lose her.
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Paul jogged onstage with my Gibson. I swapped the electric guitar for the acoustic and slid the strap over my shoulder. Amazing that I could be sitting on a cold stool in the hot lights of a open-air college amphitheater with five thousand screaming fans and still feel so damned alone.
I sucked in a slow breath, my fingers instinctively reaching for that first chord. My Gibson was my focus. With her in my arms, everything else faded away.
“I love you, Logan!”
I peered into the blinding spotlight and leaned into the mic. “Love you, too.”
The crowd went ballistic. Tonight was my twenty-third birthday, and I was spending it with my alt-rock band, Logan and the Howlers. We were finally starting to see some success. Our songs climbed up iTunes charts as fast as we could release them, and our concert venues were getting bigger without the backing of a big record label. We were busy.
Even on my birthday.
Luke, my twin brother, was waiting somewhere in the wings. After the show, we were going to grab a couple of beers to celebrate, and I’d paste on a smile for my brother. For me, it was just another empty year. As my Pack brothers each found their mates, the one woman he would ever love, the ache for mine grew, but unlike the rest of the Pack, there was no hope of me being with her.
I blew my chance years ago.
Pushing the memories away, I leaned on the stool while the rest of the Howlers vanished offstage for a water break. This was my song. The crowd erupted as I strummed the first chord. “Madness in the Moonlight” was still one of our top selling singles, and a favorite at live performances. My pain on display.
She haunts my dreams.
Shadows of the past.
Ripping my heart down the seams.
No one to blame but me.
I’m a lone wolf now, but I still stare up at the moon,
Call her name, and wonder if she’s looking, too…
I sat back, letting the crowd finish the chorus, wailing the anger and rage.
Madness. Madness. Madness.
Wishing won’t change a thing.
Tell that to my fucking heart.
Welcome the pain, feel something.
Got to let her go.
Another verse, another chorus, but as I hit the key change, a familiar scent, clean and spicy like cinnamon ignited my senses. Oh shit. From where?
I was the only member of the Howlers who actually howled. Once a month, the wolf in my soul came forward and I shifted my form, surrendering to the animalistic part of my spirit. And right now the dormant wolf was clawing toward my consciousness, no longer content to rest in the background. Even as a man, my senses were heightened—especially my senses of smell and hearing, but my vision didn’t suck, either.
I’d performed this song hundreds of times. My fingers found the chords instinctively, but I almost missed my vocals, stumbling over the next verse while I scanned the crowd. Finally I turned toward the wings.
In the shadows offstage, my brother Luke waited for me…with a ghost from my past.
I forced myself to face the crowd. This was no time to lose my shit. What the hell was she doing here? I powered through the ending of the song and stood to accept the cheers.
Grabbing the hand mic, I tried not to check the wings again. “Thank you. There’s no place I’d rather be for my birthday!”
A deafening roar erupted from the crowd. “Happy Birthday, Logan” signs waved back and forth as my bandmates came out to join me, taking the decibel level even higher. Stryker jogged out, still shirtless, his untamed long hair bouncing with each stride. The guy was a monster on the drums. He raised his drumsticks while Levi, tall and slender, pumped his fist from behind the keyboard.
Levi had a degree in music, and a knack for fleshing out harmonies. Plus he was our de facto social media manager, saving the rest of us from being near a computer. We loved him for that.
And finally Zane hustled out with his bass guitar on his shoulder, waving to fans. He was the “Old Man” of the Howlers. It didn’t help that he liked to keep his hair slicked back in a 50s pompadour.
Zane stopped next to me. “You okay, man?”
There was no way any regular guy would’ve heard it through the roar of the audience, but I caught every word. I glanced at the wings, relieved to see them empty. Maybe I’d imagined her.
Wishful thinking. I’d recognize her scent anywhere.
I swapped my Gibson for the electric guitar and hit a chord. The Howlers had my back, filling the concert hall with a wall of sound, but I couldn’t lose myself in it this time. Any movement offstage had me jumpy and tense. This concert couldn’t be over soon enough.
Lisa Kessler is an award winning author of dark paranormal fiction. Her debut novel, Night Walker, won a San Diego Book Award for Best Published FantasyScifiHorror
as well as the Romance Through the Ages Award for Best Paranormal and Best First Book. Her short stories have been published in print anthologies and magazines, and her vampire story, Immortal Beloved, was a finalist for a Bram Stoker award. When she’s not writing, Lisa is a professional vocalist, performing with the San Diego Opera as well as other musical theater companies in San Diego.