02 March 2018

*Excerpt & Giveaway!* STOLEN OBSESSION by Marlene M. Bell

Annalisse Series, Book 1
Marlene M Bell
Genre: Spicy Romantic Mystery
Publisher: Ewephoric Publishing
Date of Publication: March 20, 2018
Number of Pages: 284

Scroll down for the giveaway!

Manhattan antiquities appraiser Annalisse Drury dreams of a quiet life on the family farm among the sheep she loves, when her best friend is murdered. The police assume robbery is the motive because her friend’s expensive bracelet is missing. But the 500-year-old artifact is rumored to carry an ancient curse, one that unleashes evil upon any who dare wear the jewelry created for the Persian royal family—and Annalisse believes her friend is the latest victim.
Weeks later, Annalisse sees a necklace matching the stolen bracelet at a gallery opening. Convinced the necklace is part of the deadly collection, Annalisse begs the gallery’s owner to destroy the piece, but her pleas are ignored— despite the unnatural death that occurs during the opening. With two victims linked to the jewelry, Annalisse is certain she must act.
Desperate to keep the gallery owner safe, Annalisse reluctantly enlists the owner’s son to help—even though she’s afraid he’ll break her heart. Wealthy and devastatingly handsome, with a string of bereft women in his wake, Greek playboy Alec Zavos dismisses Annalisse’s concerns—until his parents are ripped from the Zavos family yacht during their ocean voyage near Crete.
Annalisse and Alec race across two oceans to save his mother, feared dead or kidnapped. As time lapses, the killer switches mode and closes in on the man who’s meant for Annalisse with the lifestyle she wants most.
But when it’s her turn as the hunted, will she choose to save Alec and his mother, or sacrifice everything to save herself?

Hold on for a heart-thumping adventure through exotic lands in this fast moving, romantic suspense mystery by Marlene M Bell.



Chapter Six, Part One
From Stolen Obsession
By Marlene M Bell

Annalisse hadn’t planned to spend her morning hiding from a federal agent. Luckily for her, the departure of Generosa’s client made it much easier for Annalisse to become invisible on the upper floor of the gallery. She crouched and peered over the empty display. Get your sorry butt down there, sissy. She gradually stood to her full height and brushed off her jeans. An incoming text message tinkled on her phone. Pulling it from her pocket, she saw a reply about the cryptic note and waved to get Alec’s attention.

“Hey, Alec. I think we have our translation.”

She dreaded having to meet with Norcross about the note.

Generosa appeared from the stockroom and offered a gleaming smile to the officers. A few second respite Annalisse was thankful for.

Annalisse hurried downstairs and turned to the detective. “Sorry to bring you down here on a Saturday, but Agent Norcross, why are you here? Am I wanted for questioning again?”
Mooney opened his mouth to answer for the agent, but Norcross stopped him with a gentle shake of her head.

“Ms. Drury, Annalisse isn’t it? You were cleared on the Freeman case, but last night’s incident shifted our focus in another direction.”

Alec and Generosa exchanged blank looks.

“The boyfriend. I knew it.” Annalisse dropped her phone into her jacket, no longer engaged in the text. Her heart began to beat harder. “Have you arrested him yet? Tell me he’s in custody.”

“I’m not at liberty to discuss an open case, but what we can tell you is, we think the death of Mr. Carradine may be related. I do have a few questions about your position at Westinn Gallery. The manager suggested we speak to you about your boss, the decedent.”

“Peter said to check me out because Harry choked? What is it with you people?” she exclaimed, outraged.

“Annalisse, take it easy.” Alec moved in and took her arm. “Would you excuse us? Detective, please fill Mom in on what you found out about Harry.”

She let Alec lead her to the office. “Damn that Peter. How much more am I expected to take? I should’ve stayed home today.”

“Take a few breaths. Stop thinking. Just breathe. Yeah, like that,” he said in a soothing voice.
“Hide this.” She reached into her jacket and handed him the collar of golden horses. “Now, please.”
“Annalisse, Harry didn’t choke. Someone killed him, or he killed himself.”

“He was eating too fast.”


“No way,” she denied automatically. But it made sense. His pallor. His hair loss. His erratic behavior. She glanced through the open door as the red-haired detective slid off his sport coat and placed it on a chair. “Don’t mention the necklace. Put it away.”

“What if it’s related to Harry or the card?”

“Until we know more, let’s keep the necklace between us. Gen has it, so we deal. As much as I hate to, let’s get this mini-interrogation done.” She closed her eyes as an image of Sam’s face with a partially burnt cigar in her mouth appeared in her mind.

“What about the translation on the card?” Alec asked.

“Ismail lives.”

“Like the seaman in Moby Dick?”

“Not the same.” She smiled at the reference and handed the card to Alec. “After you stash the necklace, give that to Mooney and let him investigate. I’ll be along once I get a cup of Gen’s famous coffee. Something to steady the jitters and kill off my caffeine headache.”

While she poured herself the aromatic hazelnut brew, adding tons of cream, she waited for the detective to cover his freckled hands with a pair of latex gloves before accepting the card for closer scrutiny.

Annalisse studied the Ralph Lauren emblem on Alec’s shirt to keep her mind off the questions to come. Obvious fold marks marked the aqua fabric, and his jeans had perfect creases down the front. Must be a new pair or fresh from the dry cleaners. Muscular thighs and a tight butt. At that moment, she realized how much she missed being held by a man. A guy she could call hers and cuddle with at night.

Marlene M Bell is an acclaimed artist and photographer as well as a writer. Her sheep landscapes grace the covers of publications such as, Sheep!, The Shepherd, Ranch & Rural Living and Sheep Industry News. Ewephoric, her mail order venture, began in 1985 out of a desire for realistic sheep stationery. A color catalog of non-fiction books and sheep-related gifts may be requested at www.marlenembell.com or www.texassheep.com.
Marlene and her husband, Gregg reside on a wooded ranch in East Texas with their 50 head of Horned Dorset sheep, a lovable Maremma guard dog named, Tia, and 3 spoiled cats who rule the household.

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MARCH 1-10, 2018
(Open Internationally)

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Excerpt 1
Author Interview
Excerpt 2
Guest Post
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Scrapbook Page
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1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed the excerpt the mystery is really good looking forward to reading more.