Books

Michelle Conder’s Books

Socialite’s Gamble

Posted on Nov 19, 2013 in Books, Coming Soon

Socialite’s Gamble

June 2014. Blurb: When the gentleman places his bet… As the darling of London’s party scene, Cara Chatsfield isn’t surprised when her father’s CEO sends her to Las Vegas to host The Chatsfield’s world-famous poker tournament. And if behind the glitz and glamour there’s a girl hurt by her past? She’ll never tell. Aidan Kelly detests women like Cara, but when his biggest rival includes Cara in the stakes, Aidan must win—and not just for her protection! But getting to know the stunning socialite, he discovers a beautiful, vulnerable young woman awoken by his own personal brand of passion! Welcome to the Chatsfield, Las Vegas! Order on Amazon   Read an unedited excerpt from Chapter One By rights Cara should have felt like she was on top of the world. And she had been yesterday when her agent had informed her that she had won the lucrative Demarche cosmetic contract that would take her modelling career in a more serious direction. On some level Cara still couldn’t believe her agent had pulled it off and she probably wouldn’t relax until the big announcement was made at a glitzy event in London the following Sunday evening. Eight days from now. It was going to be such a big deal that despite all her experience in the public eye, Cara knew that she would be nervous on the night. Especially when things had a tendency to go wrong for her at peak moments in her life and she had no idea why. Not that she would let anything get in the way this time. Her agent had worked incredibly hard to paint Cara in the best light possible. To explain that she had changed, that she was no longer the Chatsfield wild child and all-round party girl but a young woman who was revered by others around the world. Cara secretly thought that had been pushing it a bit but Harriet genuinely believed in her and Cara would not let her down. Especially after so many people had tried to distance themselves from her after that hideous rock video she had mistakenly agreed to appear in. Before the censorship board had pulled it, it had come with an R rating but naturally, it had gone viral before then. Cara had thought that she would never get a decent job again after that. Certainly that’s what her father had said. Which brought her right back to why she couldn’t yet bask in the glow of her big win. She was late. Seriously late. Not entirely her fault because really, who could have predicted that she’d get stuck on the tarmac at LAX for five hours due to an unexpected electrical storm that had hung over the city like a bad smell. And by the look of the teeming rain outside she supposed she was lucky the plane had even landed in Vegas and not been rerouted to say… Uzbekistan! That would be more in keeping with the day she was having. Probably she shouldn’t have even detoured from London to LA but when she’d been told that she had to go to Vegas, she’d wanted to stop off and take her agent to lunch. Somehow lunch had turned into a private celebratory party and… well; she wouldn’t waste time regretting it. No one other than her siblings had ever shown her any support in her life and Harriet had said it was important. ‘More important, than tonight,’ she grumbled, wanting to kiss the aisle as the line of passengers started to shuffle toward the exit doors. Poker was hardly important even if the game she was supposed to hostess later that night at one of her father’s flagship hotels had the largest buy in of any Casino in the Western world. It was only money. Glancing at the time on her phone she shoved it back into her shoulder bag and strode down the aerobridge. One hour. One hour that apparently included a thirty minute taxi ride from McCarran International to the glittering diamond on the Las Vegas strip – The Chatsfield...

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The Most Expensive Lie of All

Posted on Jun 6, 2013 in Books

The Most Expensive Lie of All

Winning at all costs? Shameless Cruz Rodriguez swapped the polo field for the boardroom eight years ago, where his killer instincts made him a phenomenally wealthy man. But there’s a hitch in his latest deal—in the sultry form of Aspen Carmichael… Champion horse breeder Aspen has never forgotten Cruz—their searing encounter was the one pleasure in her increasingly desperate life. So when darkly handsome Cruz reappears with a multimillion-dollar investment offer, Aspen is torn. She may crave his touch, but beneath his glittering black eyes lies a deception that could prove more costly than ever before! Order on Amazon Read an unedited extract from Chapter One ‘Eight three, my serve.’ Cruz Rodriguez Sanchez, self-made billionaire and one of the most formidable sportsmen to ever grace the polo field let his squash racquet drop to his side and stared at his opponent incredulously. ‘Rubbish! That was a let. And it’s eight three my way.’ ‘No way, tio! That was my point.’ Cruz eye-balled his brother as Ricardo prepared to serve. They might only be playing a friendly game of squash but “friendly” was a relative term between competing brothers. ‘Cheats always get their just desserts you know,’ Cruz drawled, moving to the opposite square. Ricardo grinned. ‘You can’t win every time, mi amigo.’ Maybe not, Cruz thought, but he couldn’t remember the last time he’d lost. Oh, yeah, actually, he could because his lawyer was in the process of righting that particular wrong while he blew off steam with his brother at their regular catch up session. Feeling pumped he correctly anticipated Ricardo’s attempted “kill shot” and slashed back a return that his brother had no chance of reaching. Not that he didn’t try. His runners squeaking across the resin coated floor as he lunged for the ball and missed. ‘Chingada madre!’ ‘Now, now,’ Cruz mocked. ‘That would be nine three. My serve.’ ‘That’s just showing off,’ Ricardo grumbled, picking himself up and swiping at the sweat on his brow with his wrist band. Cruz shook his head. ‘You know what they say? If you can’t stand the heat…’ ‘Too much talking, la figura.’ ‘Good to see you know your place.’ He flashed his brother a lazy smile as he prepared to serve. ‘El pequeno.’ Ricardo rolled his eyes, flipped him the bird and bunkered down, determination etched all over his face. But Cruz was in his zone and when Ricardo flicked his wrist and sent the ball barrelling on a collision course with Cruz’s right cheekbone he adjusted his body with graceful agility and sent the ball ricocheting around the court. Not bothering to pick himself up off the floor this time, Ricardo lay there, mentally tracking the trajectory of the ball and shook his head. ‘That’s just unfair. Squash isn’t even your game.’ ‘True.’ Polo had been his game. Years ago. Wiping sweat from his face Cruz reached into his gym bag and tossed his brother a bottle of water. Ricardo sat on his haunches and guzzled it. ‘You know I let you win these little contests between us because you’re unbearable to be around when you lose,’ he advised. Cruz grinned down at him. He couldn’t dispute him. It was a celebrated fact that professional sportsmen were very poor losers and while he hadn’t played professional polo for eight years he’d never lost his competitive edge. On top of that he was in an exceptionally good mood which made beating him almost impossible. Remembering the reason for that, he pulled his cell phone from his kitbag to see if the text he was waiting on had come through, frowning slightly when it hadn’t. ‘Why are you checking that thing so much?’ Ricardo queried, ‘don’t tell me some chica is finally playing hard to get.’ ‘You wish,’ Cruz murmured. ‘But no, it’s just a business deal.’ ‘Ah, don’t sweat it. One day you’ll meet the chica of your dreams.’ Cruz threw him a banal look. ‘Unlike you I’m not looking for the woman of my dreams.’ ‘Then you’ll probably meet her first,’ Ricardo lamented. Cruz laughed. ‘Don’t hold...

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Duty at What Cost?

Posted on Jan 19, 2013 in Books

Duty at What Cost?

To protect Princess Ava de Veers, James Wolfe must keep his mind on the job. Having shared one passionate night, Wolfe knows exactly how wilful, independent – and sexy – she is. But he will separate his feelings for Ava from the task at hand. Wolfe is the most daring man Ava has ever met and he drives her crazy! Yet as the threat to her life escalates, he’s the only man she can trust and the only place she feels safe is in his arms. But, as Royalty, Ava knows that duty always comes at a cost… Order on Amazon   Read an unedited excerpt from Chapter One below: ‘There’s a woman stuck on the south wall, boss. What do you want us to do with her?’ Wolfe pulled up in the middle of an arched hallway of Chateaux Verne and pressed his phone a little tighter to his ear. ‘On the wall?’ ‘The very top,’ Eric, one of the more junior members of Wolfe’s security team, repeated. Wolfe tensed. Perfect. Most likely another interfering journalist trying to get the scoop on his friend’s extravagant wedding to the daughter of a controversial American politician. They hadn’t let up all day, circling the chateaux like starving buzzards. But none had been brazen enough to go over the wall yet. Of course he’d been prepared for the possibility – the reason they now had this little intruder in hand. ‘Name?’ ‘Says she’s Ava de Veers, Princess of Anders.’ A princess climbing over a forty foot brick wall? Wolfe didn’t think so. ‘ID?’ ‘No ID in her handbag. Says she had a car accident and it must have fallen out.’ Clever. ‘Camera?’ ‘Check.’ Wolfe considered his options. Even from inside the thick walls of the chateaux he could hear the irritating whine of distant media choppers as they hovered just outside the established no fly zone. With the wedding still three hours away he’d better extend the security perimeters before there were any more breaches. ‘Want me to take her back to base, boss?’ ‘No.’ Wolfe shot his hand through his hair. He’d rather turf her back over the wall than give her even more access to the property by taking her to the outer cottage his men were temporarily using. And he would – after he had established her identity and satisfied himself that she wasn’t a real threat. ‘Leave her where she’s perched.’ He was about to ring off when he had another thought. ‘And Eric, keep your gun on her until I get there.’ That would teach her for entering a private function without an invitation. ‘Ah, you mean keep her on the wall?’ When Eric hesitated Wolfe knew right then that the woman was attractive. ‘Yes, that’s exactly what I mean.’ For all he knew she could be a political nutcase instead of an overzealous journo. ‘And don’t engage in any conversation with her until I get there.’ Wolfe trusted his men implicitly, but the last thing he needed was some smoking Mata Hari doing a number on their head. ‘Yes, sir.’ Wolfe pocketed his phone. This would mean he wouldn’t be able to start the pre-wedding game of polo Gilles had organised. Annoying, but it couldn’t be helped. He’d offered to run security for Gilles’s wedding because it was what he did and the job always came first. Once outside Wolfe found Gilles and his merry band already waiting for him at the stables; the horses groomed and saddled and rearing to go. Wolfe ran his gaze over the roguish, white Arab Gilles had promised him. He’d missed his daily gym workout this morning and he had been looking forward to putting the stallion through his paces. Hell, he still could. Taking the reins from the handler he swung easily onto the giant of a horse. The stallion shifted restlessly beneath his weight and Wolfe automatically reached forward to pat his neck, breathing in the strong scent of horse and leather. ‘What’s his name?’ ‘Achilles.’ His mouth quirked and Gilles shrugged. ‘Apollo was taken and he’s...

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Living The Charade

Posted on Jun 25, 2012 in Books

Living The Charade

Miller Jacobs knows that professional succes doesn”t always come easy, and she”s not afraid  of hard work. But her flair for business can”t help with her latest problem – finding a fake boyfriend for a weekend away with her boss! Valentino Ventura, maverick of the racing world, is Miller”s polar opposite. Yet helping buttoned up Miller let her hair – and whatever else she wants down – is an irresistible temptation… especially when Tino gets under her ice-cool demeanour and discovers a woman as hot as one of his cars. Order on Amazon   Excerpt (part of chapter one – unedited) If the world was a fair place the perfect solution to Miller Jacob’s unprecedented crisis would walk through the double glazed doors of the hip Sydney watering hole she was in wearing a nice suit and sporting an even nicer personality. Unlike the self-important banker currently sitting at the small wooden table opposite her who probably should have stopped drinking at least two hours ago. ‘So sexy lady, what is this favour you need from me?’ Miller tried not to cringe at the man’s inebriated state and turned to her close friend, Ruby Clarkson, with a smile that said: “how could you possibly think this loser would be in any way suitable as my fake boyfriend this coming weekend?” Ruby arched a brow in apology and then did what only a truly beautiful woman could do – dazzled the banker with a mega-watt smile and told him to take a hike. Not literally, of course. Chances were she’d have to work with him at some point in the future. Miller breathed a sigh of relief when Superman staggered toward the semi-packed, dimly lit bar and disappeared from view. ‘Don’t say it,’ Ruby warned. ‘On paper he seemed perfect.’ ‘On paper most men seem perfect,’ Miller said glumly. ‘It’s only when you get to know them that the trouble starts.’ ‘That’s morose. Even for you.’ Miller’s eyebrows shot up. She had good reason to be feeling morose. She had just wasted an hour she didn’t have drinking white wine she wouldn’t even cook with and was no further toward solving her problem than she was yesterday. A problem that had started when she’d lied to her boss about having a boyfriend who would love to come away for a business weekend to keep a very important, and very arrogant, potential client in check. TJ Lyons was overweight, overbearing and obnoxious and had taken her “not interested” signs as some sort of personal challenge. Apparently he had told Dexter, her boss, that he believed Miller’s cool, professional image was hiding a hot blooded woman just begging to be set free and he was determined to add her to his stable of has-run “fillies”. Miller shuddered as she recalled overhearing him use that particulare phrase. The man was a chauvanistic bore and wore an Akubra hat as if he was Australia’s answer to JR Ewing. But he had her rattled. And when TJ had challenged her to “bring your hubbie” along to his fiftieth birthday celebration where she could also present her final business proposal Miller had smiled sweetly and said indeed that would be lovely. Which meant she now needed a man by tomorrow afternoon. Perhaps she’d been a little hasty in giving Superman the flick. Ruby rested her chin in her hand. ‘There’s got to be someone else.’ ‘Why don’t I just say he’s sick?’ ‘Your boss is already suss on you. And even if he wasn’t, if you give your fake boyfriend a fake illness you still have to deal with your amorous client all weekend.’ Miller pulled a face. ‘Don’t mistake TJ’s intentions as amorous. They’re more licentious in nature.’ ‘Maybe so but I’m sure Dexter’s are amorous.’ Ruby was convinced Miller’s boss was interested in her but Miller didn’t see it. ‘Dexter’s married.’ ‘Separated. And you know he’s keen on you. That’s one of the reasons you lied about having a boyfriend.’ Miller let her head fall back on her neck and made a tortured sound through her...

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His Last Chance at Redemption

Posted on Mar 4, 2012 in Books

His Last Chance at Redemption

His final undoing… Leo Aleksandrov is used to being obeyed – a perk of his cold-hearted ruthlessness. Having to explain to an enticingly pure crèche-owner exactly why he’s never met his own son? Not how he likes to operate. There are some secrets so dark they should never be told… Employing Lexi Somers as a stand-in nanny pushes this merciless tycoon to the edge. Her warm innocence could never even start to atone for the sins of his past, but if giving into temptation is inevitable, blazing pleasure is the only thing he’ll allow himself to feel in her arms… Order on Amazon   Excerpt (Part of Chapter One unedited) ‘So, you still haven’t said. Are you going to Paris this weekend with Simon, or not?’ Lexi stopped trying to put the wheel back on a broken toy truck and looked over at her best friend and business partner, Aimee Madigan. Aimee had one eye on the group of kids enjoying free play at the Little Angels childcare centre they had started together two years ago and the other on the yarn she was carefully winding back into a ball. ‘And please don’t tell me you have to work,’ her friend added with a sense of resigned certainty. Lexi grimaced. She was supposed to be heading to Paris for the long weekend with a guy she’d been seeing casually for two months. And no doubt Simon would expect their relationship to advance to the next stage – sex – but Lexi wasn’t convinced that was such a good idea. She had let herself be worn down by a man’s pursuit once before and the experience still left a bitter taste in her mouth. ‘You know the second centre is at a crucial stage of the planning. If I don’t get the loan approved in the next week or so, we won’t have one.’ ‘I take it things didn’t go so well then with Darth Vader this morning?’ Lexi grimaced at Aimee’s use of the pet moniker they had attributed to their hard-nosed bank manager and tried not to feel despondent. ‘He’s still got some concerns about how much the renovations are costing and some aspects of the business plan.’ ‘I wish I could help you.’ Lexi shook her head. ‘This is my area of the business and you do enough around here. I’ll sort it somehow.’ Aimee stopped winding her wool and looked at Lexi wide-eyed. ‘I know, maybe you could do that somewhere between the Arc de Triomphe and the Louvre.’ ‘Oh yeah, I’m sure Simon would really love that!’ Lexi laughed. ‘Well he is shelling out for the Ritz so it seems a shame to miss it altogether. And he does seem very nice.’ ‘He is.’ Lexi replied, wishing Aimee would let the topic drop. ‘Have you talked to Darren’s mum about his hitting problem yet?’ ‘Not every man is an immature skunk like Brandon, Lex,’ Aimee said, refusing to take up her not so subtle diversionary attempt. ‘And it has been four years.’ Lexi pulled a face. She’d been best friends with Aimee since high school and she knew her friend had her best interests at heart. And she also knew Aimee was right, but Brandon’s betrayal had echoed that of her father’s just a little too closely and Lexi wasn’t at all sure she was willing to risk her heart again anytime soon. But even thinking about having a relationship brought up all her old insecurities and the truth, which she was far too embarrassed to ever admit to anyone – including Aimee – was that she wasn’t great at sex. Wasn’t overly sexual at all. ‘I know that,’ she said on a sigh. And she did. But even thinking about having a relationship brought up all her old insecurities and the truth, which she was far too embarrassed to ever admit to anyone – including Aimee – was that she wasn’t great at sex. Wasn’t overly sexual at all. Which if she was being completely honest was the main reason she didn’t want to...

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Girl Behind The Scandalous Reputation

Posted on Mar 3, 2012 in Books

Girl Behind The Scandalous Reputation

Red Carpet Confession! Getting falsely arrested feels like a scene from a bad movie for rising star Lily Wild—especially when she discovers the conditions of her release: round-the-clock surveillance by world-class lawyer Tristan Garrett. Ignoring her attraction to the sinfully sexy man who crushed her youthful heart is getting harder by the minute! Lily belongs to Tristan now, and when he says jump she’d better ask how high! With a reputation founded on control, he’s determined not to lose his head over this little minx again. But he blazes white-hot every time he looks at her, and it’s burning away his couldn’t-care-less façade! Order on Amazon   Excerpt ‘Is this your idea of a joke, Jordana?’ Tristan Garrett turned away from the view of the Thames outside his tenth-storey office window to stare incredulously at his baby sister. She sat in one of the navy tub chairs on the visitor’s side of his desk; legs crossed, immaculately groomed, and not at all like the crazy person sailing three sheets to the wind as she sounded. ‘As if I would joke about something so serious!’ Jordana exclaimed gazing at him; jade green eyes, the exact shade as his own, wide and etched with worry. ‘I know it sounds unbelievable but it’s true and we have to help her.’ Actually, her story didn’t sound unbelievable at all but Tristan knew his sanguine sister had a tendency to see goodness in people when there was none to see at all. He turned back to stare at the pedestrians lining the Thames and better able to enjoy the September sunshine than he was. He couldn’t stand seeing his sister so upset and he cursed the so-called friend who was responsible for putting these fresh tears in her eyes. When she came to stand beside him he slung his arm around her shoulders, drawing her close. What could he say to placate her? That the friend she wanted to help wasn’t worth it? That anyone stupid enough to try and smuggle drugs out of Thailand deserved to get caught? Normally, he would help his sister in a heartbeat, but no way was he getting involved in this fiasco – and nor was she. He gave her an affectionate squeeze, but he didn’t try to contain the edge of steel in his voice when he spoke. ‘Jo, this is not your problem and you are not getting involved.’ ‘I-’ Tristan held up his hand to cut off her immediate objection, his solid gold cufflinks glinting in the down lights. ‘If what you say is true then the girl made her bed and she’ll have to lie in it. ‘And, may I remind you that you’re eight days away from the wedding of the bloody year and not only will Oliver not want you getting involved, but I doubt the Prince of Greece will want to be sat beside a known drug user no matter how beautiful.’ Jordana’s mouth tightened. ‘Oliver would want me to do what was right,’ she objected, ‘and I don’t care what my wedding guests think. I’m going to help Lily and that’s that.’ Tristan shook his head. ‘Why would you risk it?’ ‘She’s my best friend and I promised I would.’ That surprised him. He’d thought their friendship had died down years ago. But if that was the case then why was Lily to be maid of honour at Jo’s wedding? Maid of honour to his best man! And why hadn’t he thought to ask that question two weeks earlier when he’d found out she was coming to the wedding? That surprised him. He’d thought their friendship had died down years ago. But if that was the case then why was Lily to be maid of honour at Jo’s wedding? Maid of honour to his best man! And why hadn’t he thought to ask that question two weeks earlier when he’d found out she was coming to the wedding? He frowned, but decided to push that issue aside for the more pressing problem at hand. ‘When did you speak to her?’...

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