on August 26, 2014
Buy on Amazon
It’s Time To Meet A New Kind Of Hero...
Dante Stark has a dark secret--a legacy left to him by his father which is both a blessing and a curse. A traumatic experience as a small boy gave him special powers of healing, but it comes with a price. Destined to wander the world alone to heal others, he's accepted his fate. Until Selina Rogers forces him to confront his deepest fears, erotic desires, and question his capacity to love.
Selina Rogers has made a name for herself at Inferno Enterprises. She's tough, confident and prepared to succeed. She's also built a world she believes is safe, until she's attacked and then saved by a masked stranger. As he helps her heal physically and emotionally, she becomes fascinated by his overwhelming power and gentle touch. Determined to show Dante the love he's been denying himself, Selina surrenders her heart, and dreams of a future with the mysterious man who completes her.
But will his dark legacy destroy them...or save them both...
A Note from Jennifer Probst:
I wasn’t supposed to be writing a paranormal book.
I’m a contemporary sort of girl. Love the world, and never wanted to change. So when I sat down to write Dante’s Fire, it was keeping with my same exact theme. I wrote a contemporary story set in the modern world, with a gorgeous, tortured, alpha hero who just happened to have certain powers that no other man did. Kind of like a superhero.
BUT, in my mind, all my heroes are superheroes. They may not fly, bend steel, or own a cool hammer, but they’re big and bad; sweet and vulnerable beneath the growl; and always complete the heroine. They’re protective. They’re…everything.
Dante is no exception. He was inspired by my wonderful sons who loved any type of superheroes, but also became intrigued regarding their weaknesses. After all, most of these hotties are quite tortured.
Dante is human. He’s a billionaire. He lives in today’s world.
But he’s a different type of hero. He has a gift that helps women, but also tortures and isolates him from women he can pursue a relationship with.
After the book was written, and I showed it to some of my beta readers, imagine my surprise when everyone told me they loved my foray into paranormal romance.
Huh? No, I said. This is contemporary with a twist.
Nope, my readers told me. You wrote a paranormal and it’s awesome.
Oh. Okay. Well as long as it’s awesome…
Then there were other readers who heard the word paranormal. Nope, they said. I don’t read that genre, not my thing.
Understood. Romance is so widely varied, and many don’t enjoy crossover. It was a good time in my career to look at my work and wonder what I was thinking. And then it became quite simple – the light bulb moment – and I decided to follow the path and release the novella and the series it became by the epilogue for one reason.
Dante’s Fire has all the elements my books will always contain. When a writer follows a story, she rarely thinks of marketing, brand, genre, or anything that’s reasonable. She follows the story. Writers write a great story.
That’s my job. I then have to give it to my wonderful readers as a precious gift, and see if it resonates. Not all books will. I’m in this career for the long haul, and not to write just a book or two that will splash on the NYT and then retire. There will be ups, and downs, and harder books to write than others. But if I’m doing my job, I need to bring you ALL the stories that beat in my heart and soul and give these characters the life they deserve.
I didn’t intend to write a paranormal book.
But I probably did, and that’s okay.
Here’s an excerpt from Dante’s Fire:
Her mind flew from where it had wandered and she suddenly found herself gasping for air, her sanity stolen from the monsters that ran into the night. Sobs escaped her lips as she pushed herself up from the ground; knowing she had to run, get help. The rusty taste of blood lingered on her tongue, and she got on her hands and knees and began crawling. Up the stairs and to the light. Help, help, she needed help…
She pushed up to her feet. Fell. Grasped at the torn fabric beside her, needing to cover her naked breasts, and tried again. Selina wobbled, maintained her balance, and began to stumble forward to safety.
Then she looked up.
The two men who had been on her seconds before lay on the ground in a broken tangle. One flat on his back, the other draped over him in obvious pain, apparent by the low groans coming from the ground. A man stood over them dressed completely in black, his eyes glowing in the darkness.
Selina froze in sheer terror. Her mind groped desperately for reality but fear pulsed through every blood vessel, pumping furiously as her entire body shook in reaction to the scene before her. The rage shimmering around the man reached out in a tangible ripple, whirling around the sprawled attackers like a tornado. As this tornado grew denser and picked up in speed, the sound of a crashing wave roared in her ears. The darkness turned to a dim red, glowing and illuminating the two men on the pavement, and then the glow turned hot.
Flames burst from the circle.
Selina moaned and stumbled back. A dim corner of her mind screamed for her to run, but her body wouldn’t obey. She stood and watched the mysterious stranger hold out his hands and murmur a chant, his voice deep and hypnotic, and the flames turned into two, swirling around each victim as if ready to mark them.
That’s when the screams began.
Masculine voices rose in horror and agony as the flames burst forward and scorched each of their arms. Rooted to the floor, she stared as the flame turned sharp like a sword, and carved a symbol onto each of their arms, slashing from wrist to upper arm. The stench of burning flesh rose to her nostrils, the cries rang in her ears, and Selina stared at the man who had saved her, like a superhero turned demon in the dead of night.
Suddenly, the flames extinguished and the night quieted. Sobs came from the men as they writhed on the ground. Police sirens rang in the distance.
The stranger spoke. His voice rose like smoke, burned like fire, tempted like sin. Rich, dark, and silky smooth with a touch of violence. Selina knew this voice would haunt her for eternity.
“You are now marked for your crime. If you ever touch another woman, these marks will turn to fire, to always remind you of what you did.” His eyes dimmed until they were twin pools of inky blackness. “To remind you of who you are.”
Her ears rung and her heart thundered. A ragged moan escaped her lips. This wasn’t real. What if the stranger wanted her for himself? Dear God, he’d burned those men, the scent of scorched flesh still lingering in the air. Would he burn her, too?
She had to leave. Had to save herself. Holding back choked sobs, she flung herself up the steps, but her shaking knees gave out and she crashed back down to the sidewalk. Frantic for safety, she scrambled forward, her skin scraping against the rough concrete as she focused on getting away from the nightmare around her.
In seconds, he knelt before her. She opened her mouth to scream, hoping the police would get here in time, but his masked face contradicted the gentleness in his touch as he wrapped the torn coat around her. “I will not hurt you. Please don’t be afraid of me.”
“This can’t be happening,” she whispered. “Help me.”
With slow movements, he smoothed back her tangled hair. Produced a clean white cloth to gently touch the blood on her face. Then gazed deep into her eyes.
“It will be okay, Selina. I promise you. I will make everything right again.”
“You burned them. You— “
“Shh. You’re hysterical. Let me help you.”
Selina had to be dreaming. Perhaps she’d passed out and was laying somewhere on the sidewalk bleeding out. The heart wrenching panic subsided under his touch. A gentle protectiveness settled over her, like a fuzzy blanket on a snow-ridden night. She lifted her hand to see if she could touch the stranger, or if he’d dissolve into a cloud of smoke.
Then fell into blackness.