❤❤Raven by Stacey Rourke❤❤ @Rourkewrites


An infamous love, destined nevermore,

For death could not claim, the enchanting Lenore.

Cursed by the malevolent spirit of the Headless Horseman, Ireland Crane ventures to Manhattan in search of a way to break her soul crushing bond. Instead, she discovers the lines between fact and fiction are blurring once more. Croaking ravens. Telltale hearts. Could the works of Poe be coming to pass with handsome Wall Street Midas Ridley Peolte as their unwilling target?

She walks the Earth, a plague on mankind,

searching for he, her rotted heart doth pine.

Together, the two unknowingly release a dark force death itself could not tame. Surrounded by the unrelenting violence and mayhem they’ve unleashed, Ireland feels her control over the Horseman slipping. Before the beast within consumes her, she and her crew must follow the clues of the dead to right a centuries’ old wrong. Will it be enough to sate the Horseman’s appetite?

Hell hath no fury like a ghoul scorned.


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her eyes on the wash of tears that threatened, Ireland ignored the wailing of

her heart … and laid a palm to each of their cheeks. One lone tear snuck

between her lashes at the cascade of tingles seeping up her arms.


can’t blame them for not understanding,” a familiar voice drawled behind her.


spun as he neared, leaving Rip and Noah wheezing for breath—or, more likely,

completion of her task.


flowers bloomed in a colorless world each time the sole of Ridley’s shoes met

the earth. The crisp cut of his white, tailored suit was accented by a burst of

color from the button-down shirt beneath that changed in hue to match the

species of flowers that sprung to life. Hydrangeas blue. Orchid purple. Lily

fuchsia. Rose coral. As he neared, Ireland noticed his eyes morphed to match as

well. The result hypnotic.


haggard and troubled façade was a thing of the past. The man before her exuded

confidence and a zest for life from every pore. The draw of which was so

magnetic Ireland had to fight to keep her feet planted while her body insisted

she close the distance between them.


them this is a thrill, a game of chicken against the Reaper himself.” Ridley

paused beside her, his shoulder skimming hers. Even then he didn’t grace her

with a glance, his attention fixed on Rip and Noah. Tipping his head toward

her, the warmth of his breath teased over her breast bone. “For us, it’s



moment he stepped away from her, the chill of solitude lashed at Ireland’s soul

and cut deep. Bending eye-level with her withering subjects, Ridley pursed his

rose petal lips to blow a soft, healing breath over both of them. Wan

complexions of the dying were ripened to plump apricot. Both men blinked away

their disappointment before dipping in a low bow—foreheads to the ground in a

show of respect.

“No need for that, boys.” Ridley smoothed

the front of his suit coat, a self-depreciating chuckle playing over his lips.

Neither humbled servant budged.

“You’re like me?” Pacing in a slow circle

around him, Ireland’s eyes narrowed.

He matched her steps, leading them in an

intimate waltz normally reserved for predators—or lovers.

“Like you?” He tsked. “Oh no, my darling

flower. There is no other like you. Our only similarity is being pawns in a

game that began centuries before either of our fathers got an amorous gleam in

their eyes.”

Ireland’s gaze lingered over the soft curve

of his mouth, wondering if his lips could possibly taste as delectable as they

looked. “How do we play?”

Curling one finger into a ruffled tuft of

her skirt, Ridley pulled her to him. Bowing his head, he brushed his cheek over

the delicate curve of her collarbone. “The game is already in motion,” he

murmured. “The rule sheet not meant for our eyes. All we can do now is stay


Ireland weaved her fingers into his hair,

yanking his head back with a passion driven force that bordered on violent.

“I’ve taken lives. I’m a monster,” she snarled against his lips, tormenting

them both with the agonizing veil of energy that denied their touch.

His hand snaked up her arm to find her

fingers and loosen her grasp. Palm to palm. Fingers entwined with fingers.

“Does granting it make me any better?”

Ridley didn’t give her time to answer. With

one hand pressed to the small of her back he crushed her to him. Their lips met

with a desperate urgency that caused Heaven and Earth to quake in nervous

anticipation of what was coming …







RONE Award Winner for Best YA Paranormal Work of 2012 for Embrace, a Gryphon Series Novel

Young Adult and Teen Reader voted Author of the Year 2012

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