More Than One Night
Heroes of the Night book #1
The Few. The Strong. The Brave.
Melodie Alexander, a children’s librarian, prefers to live life between the pages of a book. But when the death of her best friend prompts her to step out of her comfort zone, she finds herself directly in the path of self-proclaimed bad boy, Daniel Bresland.
Daniel knew how to be a solider. Life after war? Not as easy. He served his country in Afghanistan, both in the military and as a private contractor, but fighting the war came at high personal cost. Now he’s determined to keep his relationships “casual” in order to protect his heart and prevent anyone from getting too close.
A chance encounter between Melodie and Daniel on a flight to Dallas proves that opposites really do attract. But when scars from the past threaten their new relationship almost before it starts, Daniel must decide if he can risk opening his heart again to convince Melodie he wants more than one night.
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If you love men in uniform and believe the night belongs to lovers, then The Heroes of the Night series is perfect for you! Stories of military heroes, sexy and flawed, and the women they love.
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Excerpt – First Date
Daniel walked through the doorway promptly at eight. Never early. Never late. Beer, sweat, and women’s perfume permeated his senses. My kind of party. He scanned the bar area looking for Melodie. Men in cowboy hats talking up women in high heels occupied most of the seats. Though there were some empty chairs, his date didn’t seem to be the “I’ll wait for you at the bar” type. Making his way through the hot bodies and large red couches interspersed for the comfort of the patrons who needed a rest from dancing in the lounge area, he searched the faces for a glimpse of her chocolate brown waves. Still no Melodie.
He rolled his neck to ease the growing tension. She didn’t strike him as the type to agree to come and then back out. He moved to the center of the lounge area to check out the dancers. Though still early for a Friday night, the dance floor hosted a decent number of people gyrating to the band’s rendition of a popular Def Leppard song.
Keen eyes scanned the crowd looking for her dark brown head bobbing in time to the music. Based on what he’d learned about her, it didn’t seem likely she’d be hanging out with a bunch of strangers, but he felt compelled to cover all the bases. Still nothing. Where in the hell could she be? His disappointment seemed largely out of place for a woman he’d just met and had only known for a few hours. Time for a drink. Someday soon he’d have to find something besides alcohol and women to mask his pain, but that day was not today.
Moving back to the bar, he ordered a beer and made his way toward the outdoor patio. Maybe he could bum a cigarette off someone. He really didn’t smoke, but sometimes he needed to distract himself from his nonstop internal diatribe.
Right before exiting, he caught sight of the brunette beauty, the most beautiful wallflower he’d ever laid eyes on. Melodie. In a denim skirt, white blouse, and red jacket—the picture of patriotism in a curvy, sexy package. He made eye contact and swaggered in her direction. “God bless the USA.”
Her innocent look shot arousal through his veins, settling just below his belt. Thirty seconds and already he needed a cold shower. Or a hot time in bed with Miss USA here.
“Do you always make random comments, or do I just bring out the best in you?”
“You definitely bring out the best in me, sweetheart. I was just commenting about how patriotic you look in your red, white, and blue.”
“Oh…” her blush matched her jacket.
Wanting to save her from herself, he gulped a few more swigs of his beer before tossing it in the trash can. “Let’s dance, eighties girl.”
Grabbing her hand, he pulled her away from the wall. His brows creased. She’d looked comfortable essentially fading into the woodwork. His eyes swept over her body. Why wouldn’t she be the center of attention no matter what the occasion? Beautiful and smart with a hint of sweetness—a dangerous combination for his heart. Not wanting to delay his body in close proximity with hers one moment longer, he pulled her into the fray of the mosh pit, hoping modesty prompted her to lie about having two left feet. The moment her body started moving in time to the music, he forgot all about her feet as her softer curves begged for attention.
He matched his steps to hers. The crowd of people pressed against them, forcing their bodies closer. This is more like it. Muscles flexed, hips rotating—sharing all his best moves. Her moves were damn good too. Those hips…her breasts…even her legs…moving to Brian Adam’s smooth beat. Each subtle sway sky-rocketed his libido to levels for which he couldn’t be held responsible for very long.
The guitars strummed while the drums grew louder, feeding off the energy of the crowd. No slow songs from this group. Time to improvise and make his move. Pulling her tighter, he closed his eyes to focus on the warm-blooded woman fate had delivered in the seat next to him. This wallflower possessed curves which, at present, were exactly where he wanted them—pressed against his chest. Lower, the softness led to muscled thighs igniting multiple fantasies about them being wrapped around his hips. Despite his self-proclaimed promise to behave, he lowered his face to the curve of her neck, inhaling softly. Sweet Jesus, not only did she rally every ounce of testosterone in his body to attention, but her sweet smell was capable of bringing any man…this man…to his knees.
Dear God in heaven, he was in trouble.
Welcome! Please start off by telling us a little about yourself.
Hi Everyone! Nicole Leiren here and I’m so excited to be hanging out with you today! I’m a Midwest girl, born and raised (lived in Indiana, Wisconsin and Illinois). There was a brief time (3 months) that I spent in Alaska with my parents (who lived there for a year), but when a moose showed up in our front yard one afternoon, I knew it was time for me to head back to the lower 48! It was good that I did, because shortly thereafter, I met the man I would marry and he has been my real-world hero for the past twenty-seven years!
Is More Than One Night a single title, or part of a series?
More Than One Night, is the first full novel in the Heroes of the Night series. A short story (prequel) entitled Heating up the Night was published in the Killer Beach Reads summer anthology that released on July 16, 2015. The next book in the series, Remember the Night, is due out next spring. The heroes in the stories all served together at one point or another in Afghanistan and the stories share about their search for a happily ever after.
What were your inspirations for the story?
The hero, Daniel, was inspired by a man I met on a plane (as cliché as that sounds! LOL) I travel a lot for my day job so I meet all kinds of people every week (great character material and it takes the nervousness away from my friends who are afraid I might use THEM J) The gentleman I sat next to regaled me with his philosophies on women, life and love. It was a highly entertaining conversation and, when all was done, he agreed I could use some of the traits and philosophies he shared to create a character. He’s mentioned in the dedication of the book. The heroine is completely a figment of my imagination and someone I created to give Daniel a run for his money in the game of love.
Please share your setting for More Than One Night. Have you ever lived or visited there? If so, what did you like most?
The heroine lives in the Western Suburbs of Chicago (near where I live), but we also get a visit to the Dallas, Texas area. Though I’ve never lived there, I’ve visited several times and really enjoyed myself. A visit to an establishment called The Glass Cactus during one of my visits served as inspiration for a great first date for Daniel and Melodie.
Our hero is from Mississippi and though I’ve never been there, I enjoyed all my Google searches to let me learn a little more about the area, culture, economy and people in the great state!
When did the writing bug first bite?
This is a great question. I think one of my earliest writing gigs was dialogue for Wee Willy Ant, a character my father introduced my sister and I too at a very young age. I would draw little comic strips and make up stories to share with my little sister (4 ½ years younger than me). After that, I meddled in some poetry, but my absolute need for the end of every line to rhyme made that a challenging undertaking.
I was then introduced to fanfiction and, as a reader, consumed it on a voracious level. One day, I decided I would like to try my hand at writing some and so I created a screen name and got to work. This proved to be a valuable step in my writing career as it served as a playground for my creativity. It wasn’t about being published or selling any books, just creating stories the readers wanted to hear and loved. With much encouragement from readers and friends, I decided to take the plunge and create my own characters and stories. The rest, they say, is history!
Who are you favorite authors, book/series?
As an avid reader from a very young age, it’s hard to narrow the field. The recurring theme throughout my reading career has been mystery, suspense and romance. Starting with Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew and Encyclopedia Brown, figuring out “who dunnit?” has always been a favorite passion of mine.
As I “matured” *cough cough* the same genre thread held true, but my favorite authors/series turned to Sara Paretsky and her V.I. Warshawski novels along with Brian Haig, Lee Child and Jeffrey Deaver. Truthfully, any author who can surprise me with a storyline or twist, captures my attention. Of course, if the suspense/mystery authors sprinkle romance in there, it’s a win-win. As such, romantic suspense is my go-to genre for reading!
If you could have an author roundtable discussion with any authors, who would you invite?
I consider myself very luck as I’m surrounded by some amazing authors on a regular basis thanks to my involvement with my local writing group. Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Denise Swanson, Adrienne Giordano and Tracey Devlyn, just to name a few! Having said that, I’d love to have a sit down with Sara Paretsky to talk about her writing journey; JK Rowling, Lee Child, and Jeffrey Deaver to talk process and Nicholas Sparks to learn why he must make me cry every—single—time! LOL Harlie here: OMG! SEP is an author that I love to meet. I love her stories. Adrienne is one of my all time favorite Intrigue authors. Lucky dog, you!
Do you have any hobbies or special things you like to do in your spare time?
Sleep! LOL I know you’re laughing, but it’s true. Between working a full-time day job (which involves a lot of travel), writing, and carving out time for family and friends, I like to crawl in bed with a good book (which I’ll manage to get a few pages in before the eyelids win the battle) or *hangs head* some mind-numbing Candy Crush to slow down the synapses in the brain to allow for some sleep.
In all seriousness, though, for any time that might be left in the day, I enjoy escaping with a good book. There’s nothing quite like putting our own lives on hold for just a little while and transporting ourselves to another time, place and scene.
Thank you for allowing me to be here today. I truly hope you have the opportunity to be transported to Daniel and Melodie’s world and that it brings some joy into your spare time!
About the Author:
Nicole is a debut author with her contemporary romance series, Heroes of the Night. She has been an avid reader and lover of books from a very young age. Starting with Encyclopedia Brown, Nancy Drew, and The V.I. Warshawski novels, her love for mysteries grew and expanded to include romance and suspense. A Midwest girl, born and raised, her stories capture the love and laughter in her real world heroes and heroines.
Street Team: https://www.facebook.com/groups/Leirens.Lovelies/
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Nicole-Leiren/e/B011MKQRMQ/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1
Giveaway: $25 Amazon Gift Card