Dirty Ties is one of my top reads for 2015. The author, Pam Godwin, agreed to an interview. She answered all my questions and gave an excerpt as well as teasers for her upcoming release Dark Notes!
I race to finance it.
I evade to protect it.
I kill to attain it.
I planned everything.
The alluring, curvaceous blonde at the finish line.
With sapphire eyes that cheat and lie.
Whose powerful family murdered mine.
I hate her.
I want her.
I know she’s hiding something.
But so am I.
Dirty Ties has a bit of M/M action in it? Can we expect more M/M from you in future books?
Blood of Eve (book 2 in Trilogy of Eve) has some M/M in it. You can certainly expect more of that in my writing.
Which of your books was the most difficult to write? Do you know why?
Hands down, my Trilogy of Eve books. Complicated plots, massive research, huge cast of characters, and not just one but three heroes to develop individually and romantically. These books took me years to write.
If you could marry a fictional character, who would it be and why?
Joscelin Verreuil from Jacqueline Carey's Kushiel's Legacy series. He’s spectacularly loyal to his faith/discipline as well as to the woman he loves. He’s painfully-passionate in bed, badass in battle, sexy, intelligent, and even his flaws add to his charm. I love him hard.
Is there any particular author or book that influenced you in any way either growing up or as an adult?
Anne Rice. I began reading her books in my early teens. The emotion, characters, and sexuality in her stories opened my eyes and shaped the person I am today.
What would the title of your memoir be?
Are you usually late, early or right on time?
Right on time
What projects are you working on for 2016?
Dark Notes - stand-alone, dark student/teacher romance
Untitled - book 3 in Deliver series, dark romance
Dawn of Eve - book 3 in Trilogy of Eve, dark dystopian romance
Outdoor activity: Does writing on my deck count?
Meal: Grilled cheese, french fries, and Guinness
Phone app: Kindle App!
Store: Amazon online (I hate shopping)
Pet: My retired greyhound, Goliath
Dark Notes by Pam Godwin Excerpt
I follow Mr. Marceaux out of the classroom, my mouth dry and hands damp. As the door clicks shut behind him, my insides writhe under the barrage of a thousand fists.
He’s not a huge man, but he seems gigantic in the empty hall, a towering pissed-off mountain of repercussion.
He rubs a hand down his face, over his mouth, and glares at me for an eternity. “You come to my class unprepared and—”
“I cleared the text book issue with the front office. They always give me the first week to—”
“Do not interrupt me,” he says harshly and leans in, bracing a hand on the wall beside my head.
A rush of blood heats my cheeks beneath the intimidating blue of his gaze. His mouth is so close I can smell the lingering scent of mouthwash on his breath, and my stomach turns with unease.
“Are you deliberately trying to waste my time?” His jaw hardens. “No sniveling excuses or lies. You have five words to explain why you don’t have your supplies.”
Five words? Is this guy serious? He can eat a dick, because I’m only giving him four.
“I live in Treme.”
“Treme,” he echoes, deadpanned.
I hate how stiff and uncomfortable I feel in the confines of his glare. I want him to look away, because I hate his eyes, hate the vivid facets of crystal blues and the way the icy specks sharpen under the fluorescent lights. Nothing could ever be gentle or safe in that gaze.
His throat moves in the deep pocket of shadow above his tie. “Why?”
“Why do you live in Treme?”
He doesn’t just ask the question. He snaps it like a whip. Like a punishment I didn’t earn.
I’m only inches away from him, my back against the wall, and I feel defensive, cornered, my hackles bristling with vindication. “Oh, right. I forgot you have a big fancy degree, so I’ll dumb it down for you.”
“Watch your fucking tone.”
It’s barely a whisper, caught and held in the small space between us, but I feel it vibrate through me like a thunderous roar.
He said no sniveling excuses or lies? Fine.
I wipe the attitude from my voice and give him raw, unpolished honesty. “I live in Treme because my family can’t afford a mansion in the Garden District, Mr. Marceaux. I can’t afford a cell phone or any kind of phone. I can’t afford running shoes or food for my cat. And those…those electronic bracelets all my classmates wear when they work out? I don’t know what they do, but I can’t afford one of those either. And right now, I don’t have the money for school supplies. But I will. I’ll have it by the end of the week.”
Straightening, he steps back and lowers his head. Is that a fucking smile he’s hiding? I swear to God I glimpsed one. Is he actually enjoying the pathetic appraisal of my life? What a horrible fucking person! This is the teacher I'm supposed to look up to? The one who will make me or break me? My lungs heave and slam together.
When he lifts his head, his mouth is a flat line, and the frigid depths of his eyes seem to manipulate his entire expression, twisting it into a collage of other faces that haunt me when I sleep. “Am I supposed to feel sorry for you?”
“Never,” I seethe through grinding teeth. “I never want that.”
“No? Then what? Seems you expect me to make exceptions for you?”
“No. Just—” I’ve never met a more callous, self-righteous dick. “Just write me up or whatever you’re going to do.”
I know something isn’t right the moment he looks down the hall and checks to make sure we’re alone. I know this entire confrontation is inappropriate when he bends toward me and places his hands on the wall, bracketing my head and trapping me in. And I know there isn’t a goddamned thing I can do about it as he whispers through the pounding in my ears.
“Don't worry about your punishment.” His attention falls to my lips, returns to my eyes. “I'll take care of that later.”
Just like that, my strength, my bravery, all the things I wish I had right now abandon me in the heavy arms of fear. I’ve been in this position countless times. This is a first with a teacher, but he’s no different than the other takers. I could report him, but who are they going to believe? The girl with a slutty reputation or the former dean of Shreveport? And while I can’t overpower him, I know I’ll survive it. I might even master my emotions while it’s happening, like a Chopin nocturne in D-flat major.
I’m startled when his hand lifts, not to grab my breast but to pinch my chin so he can see my lip. “You need to go to the nurse and have her put something on this cut.”
It’s not until he releases me and slides his hands into his pockets that I realize I’m shaking. He steps back, elbows wide, shoulders back, and a heavy chill spreads through my body. He watches me with those icy blue eyes, and I’m not sure if I’m supposed to head toward the nurse’s office or wait to be dismissed. For some reason, it matters. Like he’s testing me. So I wait.
He’s a mercurial, heartless asshole, but he also surprised me. He didn’t force his mouth against mine, didn’t dig his fingers between my legs. He…stepped back?
Maybe I still have a chance to prove I'm not just a poor girl or a five-minute grope in a hallway.
A recurrent of sharp clicking sounds fills the silence between us. I follow the noise with my gaze, trailing over his tie and waistcoat, visually tracing along the dark dusting of hair on his exposed forearm, and pause on the mechanical watch on his wrist.
Moving wheels with tooth-like points whirl inside the enormous face, ticking, measuring the rhythm of time, like a metronome. Will each ticking moment I spend with him be an irreversible succession into the future? Or will he hold me here, stuck in the present, in this life?
I snap my attention to his face, the angled lines of his jaw, the darker shades of his cheeks where stubble will grow in, and the curve of lips that haven’t been injured by circumstance. He seems untouchable. Maybe his fists are as brutal as his beauty. Just looking at him feels like I’m inhaling a lungful of fire.
Because he’s dangerous, and he seems to know this, too, as he thrusts an impatient finger in the direction of the nurse’s office, his voice fueled with urgency. “Go.”
I turn and hurry down the hall, with the weight of his gaze pressing against my back.
New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author, Pam Godwin, lives in the Midwest with her husband, their two children, and a foulmouthed parrot. When she ran away, she traveled fourteen countries across five continents, attended three universities, and married the vocalist of her favorite rock band.
Java, tobacco, and dark romance novels are her favorite indulgences, and might be considered more unhealthy than her aversion to sleeping, eating meat, and dolls with blinking eyes.