Today I am so pleased to welcome Tori Anne Martin to Joyfully Jay. Tori has come to talk to us about her latest release, This Spells Disaster. Please join me in giving her a big welcome!

 

Exclusive Excerpt

Rory sat up straighter, disbelief written over her face. “You never even wanted to be my friend.”

“What?”

“I thought you didn’t like me very much. You’re so outgoing and cheerful with everyone else, but you always got quiet when I was around. I didn’t know if I’d offended you or what.”

The truth was very much the opposite, but even this tipsy, Morgan knew confessing the real reason why she used to clam up around Rory was a terrible idea. The question was: Could she prevent it from slipping out under the circumstances?

“You are quiet,” she said, speaking slowly in hopes that it would provide better control of her tongue. “I thought, maybe, I annoyed you, so I tried to be less loud.”

That was mostly true. She hadn’t wanted to annoy Rory. But it was also true that Morgan assumed Rory never thought about her at all.

Rory stared at her a moment. “You don’t annoy me. You’re funny and fun.”

Morgan’s heart beat faster, chasing away some of her discomfort. “You’re pretty fun and funny, too. I have never disliked you.”

That seemed to placate Rory. She nodded but didn’t say anything else, and Morgan wondered if she should fill the silence. It was what she’d typically do. Yet, for once, she wanted to simply sit with what had just transpired.

The sun had started to disappear, but rather than turn on the lights, Rory waved her hand, and the candle by the pizza box flickered to life. With a second gesture from Rory, its flame shot across the room, igniting each white pillar on the elaborate candelabra in front of the windows, then the candles atop the fireplace mantel.

“Show-off,” Morgan muttered. She didn’t know how fuzzy Rory’s head was, but if Morgan had attempted that stone-cold sober, she’d have burned the building down. “I can see why you think you’re boring. That’s not cool at all.”

“You should have heard me get in trouble for lighting our menorah when I was growing up. You can’t do it that way!” She laughed and rested her head against the back of the sofa, closing her eyes.

Since Morgan didn’t know how someone was supposed to light a menorah, she was tempted to ask. But in the flickering light, Rory looked so peaceful that Morgan had to conserve her energy lest she give in to the urge to scoot over and press her lips against Rory’s mouth, to feel the way her chest rose and fell against her own. It physically hurt how much she wanted to run her hand down the smooth length of Rory’s leg and feel the softness of her skin. Sitting here with the ocean melting to twilight black outside, with her head pleasantly fuzzy, everything about their fake relationship felt too real. Like if she actually leaned over and kissed Rory, she could make it so.

But there was magic, and then there was magical thinking. Wishes alone couldn’t make desires come true.

Rory cracked an eyelid and turned in Morgan’s direction. “What are you pondering?”

And because Morgan was in that half-dreaming state of drunkenness when it was hard to distinguish between feelings and reality, and because—damn it—she’d already used up the last bit of control she had over her mouth, she blurted out exactly what she’d been thinking. “We should kiss. Practice, I mean. In case we need to do it in front of your family.”

Morgan’s pulse skipped, the full force of what she was suggesting dawning on her. This could have been a cozy moment that, later, she could have pretended meant more than it did. Now, she’d ruined it, and Rory was probably about to toss her out the door. “It’ll seem less awkward then if we get the awkwardness over now. But never mind. It’s a terrible idea.”

Rory stared at her, and a flush crept up Morgan’s neck so scorching hot that she started to worry Rory was actually attempting to set her on fire.

But Rory sat up, and after a moment, she nodded. “No, that’s a smart idea.”

For the second time tonight, Morgan felt light-headed. “You think so?”

“We have to sell this relationship. It would be weird if we weren’t physically comfortable around each other.”

“Exactly.” Morgan took a deep breath, though she was unconvinced that more oxygen would help. Certainly not when her heart was beating this quickly.

Maybe this was a terrible idea. She hadn’t even kissed Rory yet. Maybe she’d pass out for real when she did, and that would be humiliating.

“So, um.” Rory slid closer until her knee touched Morgan’s.

Shivers rippled through Morgan’s body, which was absurd. It was just a knee.

Yeah, she really was not going to survive this kiss.

You could take the suggestion back, her weak sense of self-preservation whispered. Then it laughed, because fuck no. Morgan couldn’t think of a better way to die than by kissing Rory.


Blurb

this spells disaster coverMorgan Greenwood may be an incredible potion maker, but she’s convinced she was hexed at birth. A self-proclaimed “messy witch,” it comes as no surprise when she finds herself drunkenly offering to fake date the woman of her dreams for the biennial New England Witches’ festival. Enter Rory Sandler, a spellcasting champion and brilliant elemental witch, who just so happens to accept the offer for reasons unbeknownst to Morgan.

All those good luck spells must have worked after all!

But as Morgan and Rory prepare to fool everyone at the festival, their relationship starts to feel very real—that is until Morgan realizes she might have screwed up the common relaxation potion she made for Rory and given her a love potion instead, breaking one of the most sacred Witch Council Laws.

To fulfill her promise to Rory, Morgan must somehow keep playing pretend while under the watchful eyes of Rory’s family and legion of fans. But to break the love potion, she’ll also have to prove how incompatible she and Rory really are. For a screwup like herself, ruining their relationship should be easy—except every day, Morgan is becoming more bewitched by Rory herself.


Bio

Tori Anne Martin bio photoTori Anne Martin lives in New England, where she collects pen names, tattoos, and hoodies in shades of gray and black. Previously, she collected degrees, including a doctorate in psychology, where she studied how conceptions of interpersonal power relate to consent and sexual assault. She much prefers writing romance. If you can’t find her online, it’s because she’s lost in the woods.

 

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