HARD AS MASON by Cindy B. Wells – Excerpt, Interview and Giveaway

hard as mason
Hard as Mason (Sultry Tides, #1)Laura Bellamy is a rising star at her San Francisco company. She is smart, beautiful, professional, respected, and driven to succeed. Unfortunately, the greater her success grows, the more her husband’s insecurities are revealed. The couple has been married only three years since busy Laura took a chance on finding love on an internet dating website.
But once the honeymoon ended, the more she tried to make their marriage succeed, the more Greg’s true colors stained their crumbling relationship. He is jealous, paranoid, and cruel. Adding to their pressure-cooker marriage, he focuses his insecurities into pressuring his wife to start a family and give up the career that makes her happy.
Laura has worked with the same company for longer than she’s known her husband. In that time, not only has she loved her career, she’s also enjoyed her friendship with Mason Paladino: a fellow executive who is witty, sophisticated, and a bit of a goofball who sports a gorgeous swimmer’s body. For too long, the friends have suspected they share romantic chemistry, but neither will break their vows. If the right conditions present themselves, will they act on their simmering desires? Would it be wrong to deny their love? Can Laura trust her heart to show her the right path after failing miserably with her husband?
When Greg’s insecurities push him over the edge from cruel to criminal, will Laura stay, or end the toxic relationship? And if he catches her with a new man, how far will his anger drive his actions to tear them apart?
Find out what happens to Laura and Mason in Hard as Mason, book one of the Sultry Tides series by Cindy B. Wells.

Mason muttered something in his sleep and she smiled in appreciation of this man who was holding her; for her lover who had given her these past precious days.

Hidden under the covers, Mason’s arm lay over her waist and she was holding his relaxed hand cupped over her breast. She closed her eyes and listened to his soft breaths. She drank in the moment and didn’t want to move from his loving embrace.

Laura was starting a new life with this man. She sensed her future with him would be filled with truth and joy and love. She had had her challenges—and she knew many more would block her path until she was free from Greg’s obsessive grasp—but she was overjoyed from the peace rising out of her hope and potential happiness.

Laura fell back asleep and woke to the touch of Mason’s kisses on the back of her neck. “Mmm,” she was content. “That feels good,” she purred. He gently fondled her breast that remained protected by his hand. Her breaths became deeper as his thumb slowly circled her hardening nipple. Her body reacted to his every touch and a dull ache warmed her groin.

“Come here,” his voice was low. She turned over on her other side while keeping the covers close to her chin. He stretched his arm out straight beneath her neck. The blankets raised and lowered like a moving wave as she slowly pulled her leg up over his leg that found its way between her spread legs. Their faces were inches apart, so she covered her mouth with her hand to avoid exhaling morning breath. Mason lowered her hand and flattened it against his chest. He kissed her softly as his hand slid down her arm, over her waist, around to her ass and down her thigh. He watched her reaction as he slid his hand between her thighs and moved upward, stopping just short of her sex. She felt the heat from his hand and he watched her eyes begin to close. Her mouth parted open. Her lips swelled and reddened as her heart pumped her blood with a quickened pace. Laura’s hand felt his heart pounding in his chest. The beat grew stronger as his fingers landed on her sex. So slowly and lightly, he slid his fingers over her labia; teasing her most sensitive skin. His eyes glimmered with dark passion as he watched her every reaction to his touch: her slow, deep breaths; her sharp inhalations; her brow furrowing; and her eyes rolling back under her closed lids before opening again to look into his cool green eyes.

Once again, his fingers slid back between her legs. And as they moved toward him, she whimpered as his middle finger slid between her wet love lips and landed on her already bulging clit. His finger slowly circled her clit and her breaths became fuller. She had lost control of her body’s reactions; she couldn’t stop her eyes from closing. And every time she opened her eyes, he was looking at her; watching—studying—every subtle change on her face.

Laura’s head tilted back exposing her neck. Mason breathed hot breath on her skin. And as he moved his finger back from her clit, he slowly dragged the tip of his nose down along her skin until she felt his lips lightly pressing along her skin. Just as the tip of his tongue landed on the hollow at the base of her neck, Mason’s finger slid inside and curled into her.

“Oh, Mason.” Her tone was high and her words were breathy as her muscles clenched around his finger. Her palm moved down from his chest and found his busy hand under the covers as he slid in a second finger. She pressed her hand flat on his as he swirled and circled; his fingers deep inside and rubbing against her G-spot while she pressed his palm against her greedy clit.

She heard his breathing shorten as he pulled his lips from her neck. She lowered her head to look at him as his face tensed and his eyes illuminated with desire.

Their mouths were so close, but she couldn’t budge her tensed body to feel her mouth on his. Mason was enraptured by his lover as he watched a tear roll down Laura’s cheek and land on her pillow. He crooked his arm around her neck and pulled her closer. And as their mouths finally pressed together and their breaths forced through their noses, at once, they moaned when they felt Laura’s muscles squeezing and convulsing around his fingers.

Carefully, he removed his fingers from her body. They clutched each other’s skin and crushed together as closely as possible with Mason’s morning wood crammed up between their pressing bellies. They kissed passionately with raw delight; moaning and pawing to hold each other close. Mason let out a muffled cry through his kiss and they felt his cock jump and pulse between them as he came.


Why did you become a writer?

As much as I love writing, sometimes I wish I didn’t become a professional writer—the pay is absolutely horrendous. Certainly, it’s not an easy career choice, and every editor will tell you, you don’t become a writer to make money. I’ve been writing stories since I was a child, but professionally, I began as a writer for television news during which I made an attempt at being an on-air reporter. But even though my mentor was one of the most respected news anchors in the San Francisco Bay Area, I quickly realized I was much better behind the scenes. Why? When I tried putting together a demo reel to send out to news stations, my many feeble attempts at doing a standup—reporting on camera; not comedy—looked more like a sketch on Saturday Night Live. I appeared stiff on camera, I was bumping into things and people, knocking things over as I walked…it was a disaster. Needless to say, I switched to newspaper reporting.  Writing features is fun (and I’ve won international awards for such), but some of my favorite pieces came from covering crime and fire stories when I was starting in the business.

Is it difficult to come up with stories? Where do you find inspiration for stories?

Sometimes to the frustration of my family, my mind is always swimming with new ideas for stories. And generally, the stories are triggered by some small detail. One of the stories I’m currently writing (a short story I plan on submitting to some magazines for consideration) was triggered by watching a spider on my ceiling. My family often describes me as someone who is easily distracted by shiny objects. Well, there are a lot of shiny objects in the world, and most have a story to tell.

Why do you write erotic romance?

A better question is, why not? It’s a lot of fun to write erotic romance. I’ve been through some broken hearts, but that didn’t stop me from finding love. I see myself as a bit of a romantic, and I love a happy ending after some drama and intrigue. I write characters readers can relate to. They have very human issues and drama, and when they find love, it is hot and steamy and sexy…the way I like it.



·         Books: To Kill a Mockingbird, Call of the Wild, Nicholas Nickleby, The Metamorphosis (a novella)

·         Authors: Jack London, Jane Austen, John Steinbeck, Charles Dickens, Michael Crichton, Dean Koontz, Karen Russel, Woody Allen, Neil Simon, Armistead Maupin…oh, there are too many to mention.

·         Movies: “Lawrence of Arabia” (during which I fell in love with Peter O’Toole’s Caribbean-blue eyes), “Hudsucker Proxy,” “The Birds,” “Raising Arizona.”

·         Movie directors: Alfred Hitchcock, Steven Spielberg, Wes Anderson, Coen brothers

·         Sport: Swimming

·         Means of travel: Cruise ships

·         Vacation spot: Hawaii (especially the island of Kauai)

·         Candy: Chocolate…especially, See’s dark chocolate almond clusters and dark chocolate with raspberry filling.

·         Cookie: Dark-chocolate chip (with or without pecans)

·         Cupcake: Red-velvet with rich cream cheese icing

·         Foods: Italian, Sushi, Thai, Mexican

·         Music: Jazz, R&B, classic rock, most 80s, French pop/jazz

·         Singers (too many to mention): Dianna Krall, Sting, Frank Sinatra, Alicia Keys, Christina Aguilera, Harry Connick Jr., Serge Gainsbourg, Cat Stevens, Adele,  John Denver (I once walked up to the counter at Tower Records and purchased two albums that made the cashier look at me with an odd expression…one was  John Denver and the other was Jimi Hendrix)

·         Time to write: An old habit from my university days…between 10 p.m. and 2 a.m.

·         Holiday: Halloween

·         Gift from my kids: Hugs

·         Color: Caribbean blue as seen from a sailboat off the coast of Grand Cayman, or in my husband’s eyes


1)      Always carry a small notebook and pen with you, or have these items handy. I keep a notebook in my purse, in my car, by my bed, and too many other spots in the house. I keep notebooks handy like the little girl in the movie “Signs” who left glasses of water everywhere in her house. You never know when that great idea is going to pop into your imagination.

2)      Never go to sleep before writing down an idea that has been simmering in your imagination. Turn on the light and jot down the idea. Nearly every time I told myself I would remember the next day that super idea would be gone by morning.

3)      When you are finished writing something, always read it aloud. This simple task helps tremendously when you edit.

4)      Write, write, write. The more you write, the easier the process.

5)      Never give up your dream, but have a backup plan that doesn’t include winning the lottery.

Author Bio

Facebook image x6 x200pCindy B. Wells considers herself to be a romantic at heart. She enjoys creating steamy stories that are intelligent, fun and sexy with strong characters and new discoveries. Oh, and food…because what goes better with romance and love than spectacular cuisine? Therefore, you can expect to find some of her favorite restaurants and particular dishes in her stories.

A San Francisco native, Cindy has been a professional writer for many years. She splits her time between the San Francisco Bay Area and the place she likes to call home: the coastal community of Carmel, California. When she’s not writing or reading, Cindy enjoys traveling, camping, sailing, painting, swimming, wine tasting, baking and, of course, spending time with her family.


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