Dynasties: The Kincaids – Book 4
Harlequin Desire #2051
ISBN: 0-373-73163-9 / 978-0-373-73163-3

It’s hard for events planner Kara Kincaid to be planning her sister’s wedding to the man Kara’s had a crush on since childhood. Even harder when said sister calls the whole thing off. Hardest still is when the jilted groom shows Kara some very personal attention, threatening to destroy her relationship with her family—and Kara ends up in his bed anyway.

After a just-friends engagement that just didn’t work, hotel magnate Eli Houghton thinks he’s finally found the right woman. His new plan: convince Kara there’s no hidden agenda, and that the magic words are I do

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

The elevator doors slid open and they stepped inside. Eli swiped his pass key and punched the button for his private suites, then brought her around so they could face forward while remaining in physical contact. Otherwise, she was sure they looked perfectly professional, perfectly normal.

The doors slid closed, shutting them in together, alone. One minute she was staring at their blurry reflection in the polished silver of the double elevator doors. The next, she was spinning like a top, coming to rest between the hard wall of Eli’s broad chest at her front and the cool steel of the doors at her back.

“I can’t wait one more minute to do this,” he growled.

She opened her mouth to ask Do what?, but didn’t get the chance to voice the first syllable before his mouth crushed down on hers. It took her completely by surprise, cutting off her oxygen and making her muscles go limp as noodles.

Against her better judgment, when his tongue licked the seam of her lips and he attempted to nudge his way inside, she let him. It was just a kiss, after all. Just one . . . tiny . . . kiss.

Somewhere over their heads, a bell dinged. The sound didn’t have time to register in her fog-laden brain before the doors behind her slid open and she fell backward.

Eli stumbled after her, catching them both before they ended up in an undignified pile on the foyer floor. Keeping them on their feet, he continued backing her across the entryway until she was once again stopped by a wall. He pinned her there with his body, touching her from collarbones to knee bones.

He kissed her again, not nearly as gently as he had in the elevator. If the kiss in the elevator could be called gentle, which is couldn’t. But he didn’t wait for her compliance, didn’t give her time to adjust or a chance to open her mouth in invitation. He simply leaned in and took what he wanted.

For long, languid moments, they stood there, tasting, touching, letting the rest of the world spin out of control. His hands clutched her waist. His erection pressed into her belly. In return, she pawed at his shoulders, her nails kneading him through the material of his suit jacket like a kitten kneading for cream.

When he released her mouth, she gasped. Then, while she was sucking air into her scalded, much-abused lungs, he caught her off-guard by scooping her into his arms.

She let out a startled yip to find herself suddenly horizontal, literally swept off her feet. “What are you doing?”

“What do you think?” he retorted without inflection, not sounding the least bit out of breath, even though she was still struggling not to pant.

Now that he wasn’t muddling her mind with steamy kisses and subtle strokes of his hands up and down her sides, she could almost think straight, and she knew this wasn’t right. Knew they couldn’t do what he was carrying her off to do.

Pressing a palm to his rock-solid shoulder and wiggling slightly in his embrace, she said, “Eli, no. We can’t do this.”

“Yes,” he told her in no uncertain terms. “We can.”

Reaching the bedroom doorway, he elbowed open the pocket doors and headed straight for the massive king size mattress at its center. The entire room was decorated in shades of the ocean—sand, turquoise, salmon—and the bed was made up with a thick golden comforter with enough pillows stacked against the woven bamboo headboard to build a fort.

That’s all she had time to notice, though, as he carried her around to the side and set her on her feet so he could begin tossing those pillows onto the floor and tearing back the covers. Snowy white sheets in what she was sure was the finest Egyptian cotton lay beneath, just begging to be dirtied and rumpled.

Uh-oh. She took a step back in self-preservation.

Eli noticed her retreat immediately.

“Oh, no, you don’t,” he mumbled, grabbing her wrist and tugging her toward him.

Her hands went up to stop her from bumping into his chest, but he apparently wanted her to do just that, because he kept tugging until she made contact with a solid thump.

“We can’t do this, Eli,” she said again, trying desperately to make him see sense.

“Yes,” he returned with even more resolve than before, “we can.”

is the daughter of an Arabian sheik and a Las Vegas showgirl, as well as the heiress to the Chocolate is Better Than Sex Candy Company fortune. Because of this, she eats chocolate in all its many delicious forms for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and in-between snacks . . . without ever gaining an ounce on her perfect five-foot-nine, size zero figure.

Each and every one of her breathtaking, award-winning novels has been adapted to film and gone on to become a phenomenal box office smash, featuring such mega-stars as Hugh Jackman and Sandra Bullock, Tom Cruise and Julia Roberts, and Harrison Ford and Charlize Theron.
Heidi readily admits that she is only able to write such passionate love stories because of her real-life happily-ever-after romance with superstar actor Dwayne Johnson, who makes every day a fairy tale. When she's not writing or making hot, toe-curling love with her "Rock" of a husband, Heidi can often be found riding naked on horseback (a la Lady Godiva) along the beaches of Malibu or hobnobbing with the rich and famous on Martha's Vineyard.

If you'd like to experience your own perfect, idyllic life just like Heidi Betts, be sure to take the little purple pill. (Not the red one. Never the red one.)

ANGI: How often to you get lost in a story?
HEIDI: Reading one or writing one? LOL The answer to both is probably “quite often.” I just love finding a book to read that I can’t put down; one I think about when I’m away from it & can’t wait to pick up again. But the same could be said while working on my own books. Even if it’s hard to get started or the plot gets complicated toward the middle, there’s always a point where I’m so into the story that I can’t seem to write fast enough to get everything that’s whirling around in my head onto the page. 

ANGI: What’s the first book you remember reading?
HEIDI: I’ve loved to read since forever, so chances are I was reading the back of the baby powder container when I was still in the crib & have no idea what my first book truly might have been. Plus, you have to consider it was probably one originally read to me by my (librarian *g*) mother that I then began reading on my own. I’m guessing something Winnie-the-Pooh, since I was born with hunny in my veins, too. ;) 

I can tell you, though, what romance novel I first read that really, really got me into the genre & made me start to realize I wanted to write them, too… The Outlaw Hearts by Rebecca Brandewyne. Le sigh. I loved that book like a fat kid loves cake. (And I was a fat kid who did love cake, so that’s definitely saying something.) I’ve read it probably a dozen times, &—oops, well, there you go…now I want to dig it out & read it again. 

ANGI: What’s your favorite fairy tale?
HEIDI: Oh, I’m a sucker for pretty much all of them—even the darker Brothers Grimm-ish versions. Right now, though, I’m totally addicted to Disney’s Tangled. The movie & the soundtrack seem to be playing somewhere in my house almost 24/7. And can we talk about ABC’s Once Upon a Time for a minute? Thanks to that show, I’m being reminded of just how many great fairy tales & fairy tale characters there are. Love it! 
ANGI: I DO LOVE IT! Huge fan of both Tangled (what a logical story from Rapunzel). And the secrets--woo hoo--in Once Upon A Time make it AWESOME !!

ANGI: Is there a playlist you’d recommend for reading your latest release?
HEIDI: Definitely. I absolutely love music & always try to come up with a list of songs that suit the story I’m working on, but sometimes it’s songs that just kind of put me in the right frame of mind for whatever I’m writing. So I’ll tell you what I listened to while writing ON THE VERGE OF I DO, but I’d love to hear what people think after they’ve read the story for themselves. How did I do? Do they remind you as much of Kara & Eli as they do me or did I miss the boat? :) 

“Smile” – Uncle Kracker
“Need You Now” – Lady Antebellum
“This Love” – Maroon 5
"Weakness in Me” – Joan Armatrading (from 10 Things I Hate About You)
“Impulsive” – Wilson Phillips
“Bubbly” – Colbie Calait
“Ever the Same” – Rob Thomas
“Near You Always” – Jewel
“To Make You Feel My Love” – Garth Brooks
“Lullaby” – Dixie Chicks
“Terrified”— Katherine McPhee
“I Want You to Want Me” – 10 Things I Hate About You
“Marry Me” – Train
“Arms” – Christina Perri
“Rolling in the Deep” – Adele
“Son of a Preacher Man” – Dusty Springfield
“Midnight Train to Georgia” – Gladys Knight & the Pips
plus random stuff by Carrie Underwood, Garth Brooks, Tanya Tucker, Faith Hill, Trisha Yearwood…anything that put me in a Southern state of mind. ;) 

ANGI: What sound or noise do you love?
HEIDI: My very favorite sound, I think, is a cat’s purr. I absolutely love that low hum & the fact that you can’t get them to do it unless they’re happy. :) Not only that, but every cat seems to have its own unique purr—some are so low, you can barely hear them; others sound like Mack trucks revving their engines right next to your ear—so it’s fun to listen to them all. 

"I know, a frying pan. Who knew?"
ANGI: Fairy Tale or Action Adventure?
HEIDI: How about both? As I mentioned above, I love Disney’s Tangled, which is definitely a fairy tale & action-adventure. And all the better that Rapunzel does most of the butt-kicking herself. :D But I’m always up for a good fairy tale (or romantic comedy, as the case may be), & I’m always up for a good action-adventure or suspense…even if it isn’t heavy in the romance or HEA department. 

ANGI: What was the first story you remember writing?
HEIDI: LOL In the sixth grade, every Friday was Creative Writing Day, which I absolutely loved. And the most memorable story I came up with for those was about poison pepperoni on the pizzas at a school carnival. I’m sure I was probably working through some deep-seated passive-aggressive student angst with that one, but it’s the story I remember most & that prompted my teacher to tell my parents I had a much too creative mind & should maybe consider being a writer. So I did. ;) 

ANGI: What is your biggest vice?
HEIDI: How much time do you have? LOL I have far too many vices, I’m afraid. Or maybe I’ll just call them “healthy addictions.” 

I love books, of course; my house is overrun with them. There are times when I think I should just get rid of the furniture altogether, toss a blanket over some of my book boxes, & call them a couch, a table, an un-easy chair. :P

I love television & DVDs. Way too much. 

I love tea! I make gallons at a time & probably drink my weight in the stuff daily. 

And right now, I’m on a huge cinnamon gum kick. But that, at least, I consider a writing-related vice. I chew it while writing & either the spiciness or chewing motion really seem to get my brain cells humming. 

ANGI’S GOTTA ASK: It’s DESIRE week and we’re celebrating our teammate CAT SCHIELD’S release of Unfinished Business. So I’m going to play off her title and see if you’ve got any… “Unfinished Business.” Is there a character you’ve never given a story that just has to be shared?
HEIDI’S GOTTA ANSWER: You know, there’s only one that I can think of, & he happens to be from another of my Desires. If anyone remembers FORTUNE’S FORBIDDEN WOMAN from the “Dakota Fortunes” continuity series, the heroine was involved with a really nice guy named Brad before she started to fall for the hero of the story. And I always felt kind of badly for the way she dumped him. (Being a continuity, I was provided the plotline & characterizations for the book, so I couldn’t stray off into backstory & closure for secondary characters.) 

But if I could have, I’d have loved to do a spin-off of that book to make sure Brad ended up with somebody great. Of course, he’d be a little bitter at first, having been jilted…& the heroine would be meant only as a rebound seduction…but by the end, they would realize they were meant for each other. Of course. *sigh* I actually have a whole storyline in mind—in case you couldn’t tell ;)—& if I ever get the chance (even if I have to change the characters’ names to protect the guilty) I might just get around to it, after all. 

Contact    Website    Facebook    Twitter     WIPS and Chains    

Kensington Brava (an epilogue to Must Love Vampires)
September 27, 2011 Free Download on Heidi’s Site
ISBN 978-0758247636      

One lucky commenter will have their choice of Heidi’s backlist.

Note: Offer void where prohibited. Prizes will be mailed to North America addresses only unless specifically mentioned in the post. Odds of winning vary due to the number of entrants. Winners of drawings are responsible for checking this site in a timely manner. If prizes are not claimed in a timely manner, the author may not have a prize available. Get Lost In A Story cannot be responsible for an author's failure to mail the listed prize. GLIAS does not automatically pass email addresses to guest authors unless the commenter publicly posts their email address.

DON’T FORGET to FOLLOW us on Twitter (#GetLostStories) or LIKE us on Facebook to keep up with all our guest authors and their prizes. Join us while we continue our DESIRE WEEK celebration with HEIDI BETTS & BRENDA JACKSON. ~Angi 

Ooh, the shoe gets stuffed firmly on the other foot. I like. :) Sure… 

The Harlequin Desire line is filled with a lot of the tried-and-true romance novels themes—secret babies, marriages of convenience, affairs between boss & secretary, revenge plots, etc. Some readers love these & others aren’t huge fans. 

What are YOUR favorite romance novel plot devices, & what would you may be like to see more of?


  1. Hi Heidi,

    Great interview - love your playlist. I have read and loved many of your Desires. I liked the line more in the early days. Now I am more of a Blaze fan. Desires have too many secret babies, revenge plots and millionaires. I do like the the boss and secretary stories and the cowboy stories the best. I still do buy a few Desires every few months. Last year i bought the whole the Jarrods series. I do like the long series books!

  2. love this interview and the playlist you gave. n hey.. i have a same first name with your book : eli *grin

  3. Congrats on the new release, Heidi. I'm a huge fan of the revenge plot. I also like amnesia stories.

  4. Fabulous interview, Heidi. Love the premise of OTVOID. And, whew, that excerpt!

    I'm a sucker for stories about wounded heroes redeemed. Since we're talking fairy tales, would those fit under beauty and the beast?

  5. Hi Heidi!
    Welcome to GLIAS. I loved your interview and your bio was an absolute day-brightener. We sound like twins!! I love fairy tales, too, and Tangled is definitely a favorite. But boy am I hook on "Once Upon A Time." Do you have the same problem I do and have a secret, sort of demented crush on Gold/Rumplestiltskin? Maybe it's just because I've liked Robert Carlyle ever since "The Full Monty" but I keep wanting Mr. Gold to be a semi-good guy. Sigh, I always like the bad ones . . .

    Great interview, Heidi. Can't wait to pick up the new book.

  6. I just copied your playlist. It's amazing. Great interview. Can't wait to read another book about the Kincaids. I love Harlequin's Blaze and Desire lines, along with cowboys, revenge, secret babies.

  7. Good morning, Heidi and welcome to GLIAS !!

    I love reunion stories, bad-boy stories, action/adventure, great-witty dialogue. Okay, I like a good book. Period.

    So glad you're "getting lost" today. Thanks again for coming.


    Heidi's trying to post.
    Blogger's being a pain for her !


  9. Good morning! love your interview! trying to win your book, love your playlist,too!Love bad boys and a good story..have a wonderful Easter!carolefiore@yahoo.com

  10. I adore marriage of convenience stories. I like to see the couple at odds with each other in the beginning. Their bickering is fun. Inevitably their explosive arguments lead to a passionate encounter. I LOVE that.

    geishasmom73 AT yahoo DOT com

  11. Great interview! I'd love to enter to win something, but I'm afraid I'd face a riot if randomly selected again. :)

    As for my favorite themes, I'm all about affairs and revenge. I'm twisted that way.

  12. Very nice interview and excerpt. I like the revenge plots.


  13. I like action/adventure stories.
    chey127 at hotmail dot com

  14. Good Evening, late to the party today. :( Love the interview! Have to admit, also a lover of the bad boys. And have been an avid reader as long as I can remember. The joke in my house is that I was a difficult delivery because I was born w/ a book in my hands and haven't been without one since. ;) Have a wonderful night.

    You're the winner of Heidi's backlist book.

    Thanks to everyone for stopping by and helping us celebrate Cat's DESIRE release of UNFINISHED BUSINESS !


  16. I can tell you and you can tell me ew've got some thing special and i can see we've got something to be but only together.
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