Fever: A Ballroom Romance, Book One by Tonya Plank
Rory’s once promising ballet career was destroyed by family tragedy and illness. She turned her life around and became a lawyer. Now at the start of her legal career, she lacks passion in her work and self-confidence in her abilities. But when she meets gorgeous, mysterious Russian ballroom dancer, Sasha, at a firm holiday party, her passions for life and dance are immediately rekindled.
Since being torn from his Siberian family as a child, Sasha’s life ambition has been to be world ballroom champion, a path he was destined for until his former partner pulled the plug on their partnership. She went on to win the world title, leaving him, without a partner equal in ability, forever in second place. The instant he lays eyes on Rory, he recognizes the depth of her passion and talent, and falls hard for her in more ways than one.
But she also reminds him of great pain from his past. He must not only overcome his own demons but convince her to leave her demanding law career, and all that she has worked for in her adult life, to train with him full-time in order for their partnership – both on and off the dance floor – to work.
This is part one in a continuing three-book series.
As I placed my right hand into his left, settling into his hold, I felt all of two feet tall. I didn’t really know if I wanted to dance with him now, the way I’d just completely escaped his notice, or his pretending I did. As the music started, I looked out and over my right hand, refusing to look into his eyes. He gently pushed up on the bottom edge of my shoulder blade with the hand wrapped around my back. The nudge immediately made me grow half an inch taller.
“You need to stand up straighter. No one can dance well with bad posture. It’s rule number one.”
I couldn’t help but break my resolution and peek into his eyes. He had a wolfish grin that said I want to devour you. Was he playing games?
“I guide you with this hand I keep on your back,” he said raising his eyebrows and pushing lightly into me again. “You won’t connect with me properly if you’re slouching.”
He raised his left arm as if he were opening a door for me, very gentlemanly. I almost sank to my knees. But his hand remained firmly on my back, his middle two fingers almost massaging me when he nudged me toward and under his raised arm. That’s right, we were doing the underarm turn. My ability to think rationally had been knocked seriously awry. I was getting very weak-kneed.
“Stand straight,” he commanded as he whipped me around, completing the alemana. He stopped my fast turn right as I faced him, then slowly opened his arms out to his sides. “Natural opening out,” he said, reminding me of the step, rocking me backward so that I fell into his right arm, which he curved to catch me.
As he gently pressed his fingers into my side, right below my right breast, he guided me into a back rock, alongside him. Just as I was beginning to feel my sex swell, he pushed forward with the arm around my back and flung me across him. I remembered what the natural opening out was supposed to look like and managed to stay on my toes, pirouetting a hundred and eighty degrees and doing a back rock just as he caught me with his left arm, now gently but firmly placing three fingers underneath my left breast. Weird as he was acting, I wanted more than anything to move them up an inch. I resisted.
“Now the fan,” he said, raising his right arm again as if he were opening a door, and guiding me inside.
I walked under him, and he whipped me around to face him. I knew there was a turn but he whisked me around with such force. The way he’d demonstrated it, there was only supposed to be one rotation but I couldn’t stop myself. I don’t know how many times I spun, I was feeling so lightheaded. But he stopped me abruptly by cupping both of his large hands around my waist and pulling me into him.
Talk about vertical expressions of horizontal desires. That was sexier than any actual sex I’d had with James. I felt dizzy, but whether it was because I’d just twirled around umpteen times without spotting or because we’d just had a kind of mind-blowing sex, I didn’t know. How this man could do that to me with a simple press of his fingers and flick of his wrist and pull of his hands I had no blasted idea.
“You will have to get used to my strength,” he said as I stumbled, trying to regain my balance. He slowly unwrapped his fingers from my waist.
Q: Romance readers have a lot of choices these days. What makes Fever: A Ballroom Romance, Book One stand out in the crowd?
A: The Fever books are a combination of funny, sexy, and suspenseful. The beginning is filled with comical mishaps while Rory learns ballroom dancing. Then, as she begins taking private lessons with Sasha, there are a lot of steamy scenes that start out on the dance floor and end elsewhere! And, there’s also mystery and intrigue as jealous ex-partners and miscreants from Sasha’s past seek to sabotage Rory and Sasha’s partnership.
Q: We like to include our favorite quote in our reviews of the books we read. What is your favorite quote from Fever: A Ballroom Romance, Book One?
A: My favorite quote from Fever: A Ballroom Romance, Book One is:
This is toward the beginning when Rory is unsure of whether Sasha is romantically interested in her. Her friend, Kendra – one of my favorite side characters – is in disbelief at her obliviousness.
““Sit down on your bed, bend over, grab your head…and pull. Pull it out of your butt. Pull hard. It’s apparently stuck up there pretty far. But just keep tugging till it comes out. It will. I have faith.” She patted me on the shoulder, all seriousness before screaming, “Arghhh. Straight girls! I’m so glad I’m not one of you!””
About Tonya Plank
After working for many years as a criminal appeals attorney in New York, Tonya Plank now lives and writes in Southern California. A former amateur ballroom dancer, she wrote the dance blog, Swan Lake Samba Girl. Her first novel, Swallow, won several awards, including gold medals in the Independent Publisher and the Living Now Book Awards, and was a finalist in ForeWord’s Book of the Year and the National Indie Excellence Awards.
When not writing, she enjoys taking road trips with her rescue dog, Sofia, devouring Mexican food and Cadillac margaritas, sweating to dance-based workouts, cuddling up with her cats and a good book, and of course seeing dance performances of any kind. Her favorite places in the world are Lincoln Center in New York City, the Pacific Coast Highway from Laguna Beach to San Francisco, and the Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Kanab, Utah.
To connect with her, please find her at www.tonyaplank.com where she tries to blog regularly, or visit her Facebook page: www.facebook.com/TonyaPlankAuthor. For information on her upcoming releases, sign up for her newsletter at www.tonyaplank.com/newsletter.