Thursday, November 8, 2012

Escalation Clause by Liz Crowe - Virtual Tour and Giveaway

The Menagerie welcomes Liz Crowe to the blog today on her tour with Goddess Fish Promotions!! We're excited to showcase her latest release, an erotic romance titled "Escalation Clause" and visit with her.

Even better, Liz will be awarding prizes to three randomly drawn commenters during the tour: a signed copy of the new release (either ebook or print); $100 Amazon gift card; and a gift of Stewart Realty (Zazzle) swag of choice to randomly drawn commenters, so leave a comment here today and then follower her tour to increase your chances of winning. Her tour posts are listed here.

Now, on to the good stuff!

Lust At First Sight
A Chemistry Lesson

I realize the question was do I believe in Love at First Sight but I wanted to put my own spin on it to explain why I don’t.

Human beings are mammals, hardwired the meet their own basic needs. These include:

  • Nutrition/hydration
  • The ability to let go of waste (excretion)
  • Air to breathe
  • Basic Internal Stability (homeostasis)
  • Sex

I realize that I’m using the foundation of a hierarchy (Maslow’s) that has these things more refined as you move up the pyramid. However, it is my argument that this base need to connect, physically, drives us more than we want to admit. And that many of us fight, and reject it, to the point of making natural human sexual activity taboo in any situation unless you’re mostly dressed, behind lock and key and in the missionary position.

After a fair bit of success writing books that appeal to the female need to be stimulated by reading about explicit sexual activity I can say without reservation that I believe firmly in lust at first sight. You know….that glance from the guy in the elevator when it becomes a second glance that lingers….or the flirty co-worker who tempts just enough to make you find yourself hanging around late on a Thursday night at the office when you know he’ll be there…or the guy in the coffee shop whose fingers touch yours every morning when he hands you your latte and seem to linger longer every day….

That ladies (and gents) forms the basis for the physical connection that can become love, eventually, and many times does not. I will be the first to acknowledge that many loving relationships come about from long-term friendship---they guy you grew up with who comes home from college and smacks you up side the libido with “wow.” Or the co-worker you befriend when he’s going through a break-up (or you are).

I am no expert on the entirety of human psychology but I am on one thing—we love to have a hot and heavy connection with someone we find attractive. We get a need met. Where it goes from there can be a crapshoot but the natural chemistry of attraction typically comes first. My self-titled sub genre of romance: Romance For Real Life, explores this in ways that does not always appeal to traditional romance readers. My characters do connect, first on a very base level, and then usually screw up the emotions to the point of being apart sometimes years at a time before finally sorting out what they really want. I’ve been told it’s frustrating. But that the characters and plots are so well crafted, the reader can’t help but keep reading.

REMINDER: ESCALATION CLAUSE: STEWART REALTY BOOK 6 IS NOT A STAND ALONE NOVEL. You should read the first 5 (which are all best sellers and have many 5+ star reviews) to get the WHOLE story.

Young love burns hot and bright. Soul mates are found, then lost in the blink of an eye. When young widow Maureen Gordon Taylor meets her daughter's sexy soccer coach, her body and heart slowly unthaw. But will holding tight to the past cost her a future?

A devastating blow shatters a family's fragile happiness. Rob Freitag and Lila Warren now confront life without the emotional glue that once bound them, but a shared goal brings them back together. Is it enough to make them whole again and become the family they were meant to be?

Mutual trust is hard won for the Gordons. When tragedy strikes, Jack and Sara’s lives are sent into a tailspin. To keep her family from falling apart, she must force Jack to admit his deepest fears. After everything they’ve been through, can they revive the spark and move to the next stage of marital fulfillment?

The sweeping saga of the Stewart Realty series continues as long-time friends learn to rely on each other, and to grab hold of happiness before it's too late.

The sunlight pierced the light haze of his sleep. Brandis groaned, rolled over seeking shade and found himself hand-and-kneeing it facing the brick pavers of his parents’ patio. “Christ in a sidecar what time is it?” He mumbled, flipping around so he sat, back against the chaise lounge that must have served as his bed for the night. Not that he recalled anything after the second joint. He groaned and ran a hand down his already sweaty face.

Jack walked out the back door, Mountain Dew in hand, dressed for work at his father’s construction site for the day. Brandis blinked at his friend. “How in the hell can be so awake and non-hung over? I feel like three day old shit.”

“You look like it, too.” Jack slammed the remaining soda and threw the can into the returnables' bin. “You taking those back today? We need food at the house while you’re at it.”

Brandis flipped him off. “I look like your personal shopper?”

“No,” Jack sat, laced his work boots up then leveled a deep blue stare at him. “You look like a guy lucky enough not to have to work on the Saturday after a giant pool party.” His friend leaned forward on his knees and gave Brandis an ominous look. “You also look like the guy who could possibly be messing around with my sister. I don’t recommend you be that guy. Not at all.”

“I’m…” Brandis started to say something, but he had nothing, so he stayed quiet. Jack stared him down, turned on his heel then left, letting the gate bang loud behind him. Brandis crawled to the edge of the pool, noted all the shit he needed to clean out of it including at least two condoms, then stuck his feet into the cold water, groaning when his temples started pounding to the beat of his heart. He put his head in his hands. Mo was the first thing he saw when he closed his eyes. Her bright blue eyes snapping with laughter, anger, and…desire … God help him, he had nursed a crush on her for years.

She’d been such a tomboy, running with him and Jack, tagging along then joining in the baseball, basketball, soccer whatever they concocted, up to and including egg throwing at Halloween and more less innocent vices. Their easy camaraderie had always allowed them to wrestle, to tickle, to touch. After she’d shown up at his house last month, determined to escape her jerk-off father, he thought he could just ease back into it. But, he hadn’t seen her in over a year, and in that time, she had become a full-fledged, jaw-dropping woman. Her tall, athletic frame was lush, lovely, full-hipped and inviting. The deep blue of her eyes and inky black fall of her hair made him want to bury his hands in it, to kiss her until she begged for more.

So, it seemed, his crush had bloomed into full-blown lust. A desire she apparently matched.

No way.

He’d heard Jack’s message loud and clear. And as much of a man-whore as Brandis was, he was a loyal friend. So, Mo was off limits. Fine. He did not need that hassle, not now, with just a month and a half before he left for Colorado.

He leaned back on his hands and willed his cock soft, but the memory of her lips, and the feel of her skin against his if just for that one moment was not something he would soon forget. When he’d fucked that girl in the basement then realized Mo had been down there, watching them, it had taken him a couple of seconds to acknowledge he’d been picturing her beneath him, her body taking his, the sounds of her climax in his ears the entire time.

What a fucking mess.

“Hey,” he nearly jumped a mile into the air at the sound of her voice. “I, um, just want to say, you know, well…” She sat a couple of feet from him and let her feet dangle in the water. “Sorry.” She looked straight ahead.

“For what?” He cleared his throat, nervous beyond belief.

“For spying on you. I mean, I wasn’t, I was getting a drink and just kind of … oh hell. You know what I mean.” She looked down into the water. “This pool is disgusting.” She shoved a greasy looking floating seat away with her foot. “Are those…” She pointed to the used rubbers on the bottom.

“Yeah,” he ran a hand down his face, then jumped up and grabbed the skimmer. He cleared the condoms, a bottle of sunscreen and three beer cans from the pool, trying to ignore her. But his baser self would not cooperate and he had to grab a towel and fasten it around his waist to hide the damn tent in his shorts. She moved all the chairs back into their usual places and cleaned off the two glass-topped tables, finding yet another rubber in the grass near the back fence.

“You guys sure do know how to throw a party.” She smiled at him, lifting his heart and making his damn cock pound in time with his headache.

“Huh,” he grunted, before turning the water on to refill the pool and taking a reading on the chemicals. Sweat dripped off his forehead, blurring his vision. Fuck it was hot out already and it was barely eight o’clock in the morning. She crouched down next to him, her arm grazing his, making him flinch. Crush, Brandis. Remember? She is a no-go zone. Don’t do it.

Microbrewery owner, best-selling author, beer blogger and journalist, mom of three teenagers, and soccer fan, Liz lives in the great Midwest, in a major college town. Years of experience in sales and fund raising, plus an eight-year stint as an ex-pat trailing spouse, plus making her way in a world of men (i.e. the beer industry), has prepped her for life as erotic romance author. When she isn't sweating inventory and sales figures for the brewery, she can be found writing, editing or sweating promotional efforts for her latest publications.

Her groundbreaking romance subgenre, “Romance for Real Life,” has gained thousands of fans and followers who are interested less in the “HEA” and more in the “WHA” (“What Happens After?”)

Her beer blog is nationally recognized for its insider yet outsider views on the craft beer industry. Her books are set in the not-so-common worlds of breweries, on the soccer pitch and in high-powered real estate offices. Don’t ask her for anything “like” a Budweiser or risk painful injury.

Amazon Series -
B&N Series -
ARe Series -

Escalation Clause (pre-order link – -


Mysti Holiday said...

Thanks for visiting with us today!

Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thank you for hosting Liz.

Unknown said...

thanks for having me!

Harlie Williams said...

I believe in lust at first sight. Sometimes, you need that first. Love can be messy and hurtful at times.

The base need is always there and sometimes, you just need to just go for it.

Great experpt Liz.


Karen H said...

I've never read your books so I'm not familiar with your work.

I think I believe more in Lust at first sight than Love at first sight. So, what happens to that lust in your the characters involved fall in love and do they come to their HEA? Or do they not quite make it there and it's sort of a 'what if' ending?

kareninnc at gmail dot com

MomJane said...

Sounds like a good story. I guess i will have to look up the first five, however Nt

Unknown said...

MomJane you will not be disappointed. Floor Time and Sweat Equity (books 1 and 2) are best sellers with over 60 reviews of Floor time on Amazon with a 4.5 average star rating! check 'em out.

Unknown said...

Karen H in NC:
my characters tend to connect physically first, then work their way through to fairly realistic endings.hope you get a chance to read them, but please don't expect them to be very typical romance.

Rita Wray said...

Great post, I do believe in Lust at first sight. But lust doesn't last forever.


Unknown said...

Nope Ingeborg it doesn't. That's when the story REALLY Gets going in my books!

Catherine Lee said...

I don't believe in LOVE at first sight, but I do believe in LUST at first sight (and smell and touch). I also think lust can turn to love , and it's nice when some lust can linger in a long-term loving relationship.
catherinelee100 at gmail dot com

pc said...

Love the chemistry lesson and excerpt!
I think there can be love at first sight but sometimes we don't recognize it or act on's that 'je ne sais quoi' (I don't know what) that ends up being a missed opportunity. We might perceive it as lust or love or something that sends a little ripple out of the ordinary.

Unknown said...

thanks for all your comments guys! I hope you get a chance to read the Stewart Realty series to see how I put "lust at first sight....and the what happens next" to the page.

Mary Preston said...

No chemistry lesson I had at school was ever like that. I think I might have studied harder if it had been


laurie said...

Love the chemistry lesson and excerpt! sometimes you don't always recognize love at first site till its too late