Phoenix Rising Series Book Tour, Guest Post, & Giveaway

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Phoenix Rising Book 1
by Alexandra Christian
Genre: SciFi Romance
Librarian Phoebe Addison has lived her entire life within a seventy-five mile radius of her small Louisiana town, but when she receives a strange medallion from her adventurous, off-world sister, reality tilts toward the bizarre. Everything Phoe thought she knew is…well, wrong. Dead wrong. But bone-numbing fear has no place in this brave new world—nor by the side of the dangerous, exquisite man who saves her life.
Following the tragic slaughter of his family, operative Macijah “Cage” St. John understands evil in a way no man ever should. He traded happiness for a magnificent and terrible power, and fate isn’t done with him yet. He wasn’t looking for comfort. He didn’t need tenderness. But today he’ll play hero to a damsel in distress, and his quest will deliver him to the uncanny Martian colony of New London—and his heart to the demure Phoebe Addison. The bookish beauty’s
hidden talents and deep abiding love just might save Cage from himself.
Phoenix Rising Book 2
Macijah “Cage” St. John’ didn’t want the spy life anymore. He would have been thrilled to spend every morning lying in the field behind Phoe’s home in smalltown Louisiana watching the clouds roll by. But his Miss Addison wanted to spread her wings, literally. So Cage accepted a mission that teamed him up with his lady love. If only he had trusted her.
Everything about being a spy was a million times more exciting, and scarier, than the books she’d read in her former life as a librarian. When her first mission with Cage turned into a colossal clusterf*ck because he withheld information and kept secrets, Phoebe’s world narrowed into a long tunnel of betrayal. Captured by space pirates and delivered to a horrible fate, she wished the last words between them had been of love, because she was certain she would never see Cage St. John again.
In NeoGeisha, Alexandra Christian returns to the intriguing, post-apocalyptic world she created in Naked. Cage and Phoe continue to build their relationship, but not without complications. Romantic conflict and fast-paced action keep the pages turning, right down to the satisfying ending. ~ Nancy Northcott, Author of the Light Mage Wars series
NeoGeisha hit all my personal high points: wild adventure, sheet- scorching sex, killer machines, thousands-to-two odds and a vampire shape-shitfting James Bond in space. ~Vivien Jackson, Author of Wanted and Wired series
In Absinthia
Phoenix Rising Book 3
Interplanetary master spies, Macijah “Cage” St. John and Phoebe Addison are forced to take vacation time, and she wants to go to Absinthia, an off-world all inclusive interactive vacay planet set up as Victorian London, but with all the future comforts. Cage doesn’t do down time, but their boss has other ideas, so begrudgingly, Cage agrees to go to Absinthia. Within a day of their arrival, they get embroiled in a Ripper copy cat series of murders complete with séances, “altered” humans, kidnapping, and affairs of the heart – their hearts, which will always belong to each other.
Out of Ashes
Phoenix Rising Book 4
Phoebe Addison and Macijah “Cage” St. John have so much going on they can barely take a breath. Interplanetary master spies who generally drive their boss crazy, they are now trying to track down the person – is a skin walker a person? – who tried to kill him at their engagement party. Yeah, they were talked into returning to Louisiana so the whole town could show up and gawk at Cage. But they have bigger problems than usual when tracking an assassin. Secrets that have been buried for too many years are about to be uncovered if Cage and Phoe can survive the people, vampires and “things” that are trying to kill them. And to top if off, Phoe has a secret she’s sure will send Cage into a tailspin. But, as with everything they have lived through to be together, their love is the constant that is its own reward.
Alexandra Christian is an author of mostly romance with a speculative slant. Her love of Stephen King and sweet tea has flavored her fiction with a Southern Gothic sensibility that reeks of Spanish moss and deep fried eccentricity. As one-half of the writing team at Little Red Hen Romance, she’s committed to bringing exciting stories and sapiosexual love monkeys to intelligent readers everywhere. Lexx also likes to keep her fingers in lots of different pies having written everything from sci-fi and horror to Sherlock Holmes adventures. Her alter-ego, A.C. Thompson, is also the editor of the highly successful Improbable Adventures of Sherlock Holmes series of anthologies from Mocha Memoirs Press. A.C. will also pen several Shadow Council Archives novellas starring everyone’s favorite sidekick, Dr. John Watson, coming soon from Falstaff Books.
A self-proclaimed “Southern Belle from Hell,” Lexx is a native South Carolinian who lives with an epileptic wiener dog and her husband, author Tally Johnson. Her long-term aspirations are to one day be a best-selling authoress and part-time pinup girl. She’s a member of Romance Writers of America and Broad Universe—an organization that supports female authors of speculative fiction.

Neo-Geisha (Phoenix Rising #2)
Phoebe stood there letting the steaming water pour down over her body, wishing it would wash
away the doubt. She didn’t hear the swish of the door opening so when Cage stepped into the shower
behind her she screamed, coming at him with the tiny penknife she kept on hand at all times.
“Whoa,” he chuckled, grabbing her wrist. “Calm down. It’s me.” She held firm to the hilt of the
knife for a few seconds before letting him slip it from her grasp. “You’re all right.”
“Am I?”
He nodded. “You’re always safe with me, love.”
“Is that a promise?” She met his gaze, searching for sincerity in it.
“Always.” He leaned in and pressed his lips to her forehead. “You really must stop taking
weapons into the shower. That’s a nasty accident waiting to happen.”
All the pent-up emotion and stress from the last several weeks bubbled to the surface and she
crumpled against him, her tears mixing with the falling water in a mixture of relief and fear, exhilaration
and uncertainty. “There now, baby. You’re all right.” He wrapped his arms around her, brushing the
matted tendrils away from her ear and kissing her lightly at the small hollow beneath. It made her feel
small and protected. She craved the strength she felt in the hard muscles cording through his arms and
“Is it like this every time?” she sniffled.
He chuckled. “You get used to it.”
“I didn’t think you were supposed to be afraid.”
“Where on earth would you get that idea?” he said. “Fear keeps us on our toes.”
“It didn’t do so well for me,” she replied, rubbing at her burning eyes. “I fucked up everything.”
“No you didn’t. It isn’t anyone’s fault. It just happened.”
“If you hadn’t been there…” she sniffled. “I’d… I…”
He took her chin between his fingertips and forced her head up. “You would have figured a way
out. You’re smart and managed to keep your cool. As soon as the antidote took hold, you were able to
shift. That confusion you created saved both our skins. So no more of this doubt, all right? You need to
not worry so much,” he purred, nudging her back under the spray. The steam was a comfort, wrapping her
in a blanket of humid warmth and she began to relax. “You’re so tense.” He turned her around brushing
his fingertips along her spine.
“You know I’m a worrier,” she muttered.
“It’s a useless endeavor, I’m afraid.” His fingers came to rest at the swell of her ass and began
tracing circles at the base of her spine. The callouses at the tips tickled at her skin and she shivered. He
pulled her against him, so close that she could feel his lips fluttering against the cuff of her ear. “You have
to let that go. Let me help you forget all about the wolves in the dark.”

She leaned back, luxuriating in the sensation of his hands slip-sliding over her body. Her skin was
slick with the water and the remnants of expensive bath oil. “I think you’re trying to seduce me, Mr. St.
“Of course I am,” he replied, pushing her hair away from her neck so that he could feather gentle
kisses under her hairline. “Do you mind?”
“I’ll tell you when I mind,” she mumbled with a groan as he pinched her fleshy earlobe between
his teeth. She reached back, tangling her fingers in the soft curls at the base of his skull. They were short,
but long enough to wrap around a fingertip and tug lightly. She could feel his body so close behind her,
hard against her softness. The contrast was so erotic that she was breathless even before his hands slid
over her breasts.
“It isn’t fair,” she sighed as the blunt edge of his thumbnail slid over her nipple. “To let me get all
clean only to make me dirty again.”
“I’ll gladly scrub anything you have, Miss Addison.”

To Trope, or Not to Trope
By Alexandra Christian

You can’t talk about the romance genre without talking about tropes. Tropes are certain conventions that
appear in literature. Those comfortable little plot points that we can nestle down in and escape. Some
people are of the opinion that tropes are bad. That our jobs as writers are to break new ground and blow
those tired old tropes out of the water. And I can definitely understand that point of view. I like to read
different stories that aren’t like every story I’ve read before. But I can also appreciate the familiarity of a
tried and true trope that makes the story an escape.
We all love things we can predict sometimes. Take the success of Midsomer Murders. It’s a British
detective series that’s been running for a thousand years. If you watch it on a regular basis, you start to
notice a formula: a body is found, Inspector Barnaby is called away from some quirky family business to
investigate, they talk to everyone in the village that has reason to want the person dead, you think you
know who the murderer is until that person gets murdered before the commercial break, the killer ends
up being the person you least expected, and we all live happily ever after. People tune in for it week after
week because the comfort of that formula is there.
Tropes do this for romantic stories in a very effective way. We want there to be twists and turns, but we
have basic elements that we look for when we start searching for a new favorite read. Here are some of
my favorites:

  1. MC in peril: Phoe Addison, the heroine of Naked, fits in easily with this trope. She is a woman
    that is in danger from outside forces and needs Cage’s help. I love these stories because the
    lovers are thrown together in difficult circumstances. They grow to rely on one another and their
    relationship grows through their teamwork at solving the larger problem.
  2. Fairytales: As a child, fairytales were my favorite kind of story. Incidentally, fairytales are often
    romances at their core (Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Beauty and the Beast… need I go on?). As
    a romance genre trope, the fairytale stories are often updated to present day, or transported to
    different settings or times in history. I love writing fairytales, as is evident in my books Beast of
    Burden and Huntress. In Beast, it’s an erotic retelling of “Beauty and the Beast” where the hero,
    Marek, is a werewolf. For Huntress, I found a very old Scandinavian dragon story for the basis of
    hero Malik’s redemption.
  3. Performers: Stories where one of the protagonists is a performer of some sort (actor, musician,
    etc.). Sometimes they’re called celebrity romances. I think we can all identify with those. I know
    that I’ve been mentally dating Benedict Cumberbatch for years now. I wrote a short, summery
    piece called Mr. Hollywood (which you can get for FREE on my website) about a romance
    novelist in Bora Bora who meets her celebrity crush and has a little rendezvous. Gee… I wonder
    where I got the idea for that?
  4. Virgin: This trope can be controversial if the author doesn’t get the ages right. For me, the key to
    these kinds of stories is the slow-burning romance between the two main characters. Showcasing
    the alpha hero’s tenderness with an unsure lover can always bake my muffins. I tried to
    incorporate this trope a little in Naked with Phoe and Cage’s first love scene. Phoe is not very
    experienced and has been sheltered most of her life. She doesn’t come right out and say that
    she’s a virgin, but the concept is there. More obvious is in the first installment of a short story
    series from several years ago, The Virgin Queen. It’s a medieval romance where the heroine
    Joanna is married off to the king, who she assumes is a cold, disfigured brute. He turns out to be
    quite the opposite and their story is probably one of my more luscious stories.
  5. Protector: I know, you’re going to take away my feminist card, but I love this trope. A story where
    the hero has to protect the heroine in some way– those make me melt. Now, that’s not to say that
    in the same story, the heroine can’t turn around and rescue him right back. In Naked, Phoe is
    very timid at the beginning and Cage steps up and protects her from the men chasing her and
    from the terrible creatures that try to kill them. She’s terrified at the prospect of leaving her home
    and is paying this “big strong man” to help her through it. Of course, by the end, Phoe becomes a
    badass in her own right and has to help Cage out of some sticky situations. As the series
    progresses, Cage and Phoe take turns protecting one another and this is part of what fuels the
    heat between them.
    So tropes can be useful tools in choosing stories as well as writing them. They can also be traps, so
    choose wisely. The trick is to take those comfortable tropes and give them a twist that will make them
    stand out from the rest.
Follow the tour HERE for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!

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