Friday, November 9, 2012

Escalation Clause Virtual Book Tour

Liz Crowe

Young love burns hot and bright. Soul mates are found, then lost in the blink of an eye. When young widow Maureen Gordon Taylor meets her daughter's sexy soccer coach, her body and heart slowly unthaw.  But will holding tight to the past cost her a future?  
A devastating blow shatters a family's fragile happiness. Rob Freitag and Lila Warren now confront life without the emotional glue that once bound them, but a shared goal brings them back together. Is it enough to make them whole again and become the family they were meant to be?
Mutual trust is hard won for the Gordons.  When tragedy strikes, Jack and Sara’s lives are sent into a tailspin.  To keep her family from falling apart, she must force Jack to admit his deepest fears. After everything they’ve been through, can they revive the spark and move to the next stage of marital fulfillment?
The sweeping saga of the Stewart Realty series continues as long-time friends learn to rely on each other, and to grab hold of happiness before it's too late. 

XXX Excerpt:

 “It’s not rocket science. Neither of you guys were cut out to manage a restaurant that’s all. You wanted to manage your kitchen, Blake his brewery. And you kept hiring dumbasses to handle the front of the house for you. I’m organized and know how to deal with the staff. No big deal.” She started to sit but Rob gripped her arm.

“Please, come back home, Lila. I…I miss you, I miss us so much.”

She shivered at his words. “I don’t know, Rob. I mean, maybe you and I aren’t meant to be. Not without—”

Rob’s broad shoulders slumped and he looked so completely bereft it was almost funny, if it weren’t so shitty. She let her gaze travel down his apron-covered torso and her palm itched to untie it, to hold him and kiss him until he couldn’t stand it another minute. A bright pulse of erotic energy hit her core, making her gasp. She watched him clench and unclench his fists, then sit again, running his hand through his hair. She couldn’t resist. She touched it, ran her fingers through its silky yellow softness.

The bartenders called out and she waved to them. The main lights flickered then went off, plunging them into dark. His eyes held hers, their deep brown lit from the street. “I need you,” she whispered. Then she pulled him to his feet, wrapped herself around him. The kiss spoke words she wished she could say, and hoped he heard.

Just when he gripped her hair to hold her closer she tore herself away. “I need this,” she whispered as she untied his apron. He stayed still as it dropped to the floor and she popped the button on his jeans. “Please,” she leaned into his ear as she slid the zipper down and fisted his shaft. He groaned as she pushed him back towards the bar then went down on her knees. He tasted just like she remembered, and the tilt of hips, the sweet sound of his moans as she kept her fist moving and sucked the head of his cock between her lips were like music to her ears.

She slipped her other hand under his balls, stroked the smooth skin there. He gripped her hair. “Lila,” He grunted. “Stop.” But she didn’t.

Suddenly she was on her feet, folded into his arms and he was bending her back over the table, sending all their charts, phones and one empty beer glass to the floor. He ripped her panties off with one flick of his wrist, shoved her skirt up. “Oh, yes. Robert,” she threaded her fingers in his hair, met his lips and they cried out as one. The glorious feel of her man inside her, finally, again, made her want to cry but she didn’t. “Fuck me, hard. Now.”

“God,” He gripped her ass, thrust deep and slow then withdrew, biting down on her lower lip when she tightened herself around him. “Oh hell yes,” He moaned into her neck increasing his rhythm, pounding into her, making the table’s iron base screech against the concrete floor. She wrapped her legs around him, leaned her head back and let the orgasm lift her, take her and spin her around. “Damn, I have missed that,” He said, looking deep into her soul as she pulsed and thrummed from the climax.

She held his face in her hands, kept moving her hips. “Come now, Robert. Give it to me. Give me all of it.” He shuddered, then kissed her and did as he was told. She shivered, held him close. “I love you. But I’m not moving back in. Not yet. We have a long way to go and I want to make sure you’re sure. That you aren’t just doing this because you think you have to. Because of Gabe, or Blake’s memory or whatever.”

He withdrew from her, stood, and zipped his jeans back up. She sat on the edge of the table, terrified but certain.

“That’s fine,” he picked up the apron. “I’ll get the broom.” He started to turn but she grabbed his arm.

“Don’t shut down on me. I mean it. I want us to handle this together. To grieve together. And I want to plan a two-year memorial for him at the lake house.”

Rob shut his eyes. But she kept talking. “Listen to me, please.” He opened them, and the pain there she knew matched what she felt every damn day. “I want you, I want us to be together. I want another baby. I want to sell that house filled with everything that was Blake and buy another one. But I want something else even more. I want you to be certain you really love me.”

He sucked in a breath, let the silence spin out about a half minute too long for her taste. She let go of him. “I’ll clean it up. Go home. Gabe’s at your house this week, and we both know he won’t sleep unless you’re there.”

Rob opened his mouth, but Lila shook her head. Proud of herself but at the same time in misery for what she may still yet lose, she watched as he went out the back door of the kitchen without another word.

The Interview:

1. How did you begin writing this series?

I began the Stewart Realty series about 4 years ago, as a long, clunky, rookie novel. As I learned, and collected rejections, criticisms and actually got a side story from this one accepted as a different series, then got a few more things accepted and went through various editing processes—I ended up breaking it into a trilogy. By the time it finally found a home with Tri Destiny Publishing it had gone through many (many) revisions and rewrites (as good books usually do) and had evolved to become a much longer series. The first 3 books (Floor Time/Sweat Equity/Closing Costs) were that first novel. They had some pretty compelling secondary characters so I wrote their books next: Essence of Time and Conditional Offer. This recent book (Escalation Clause) picks up where Essence of Time left off for the whole group.

2. What appeals to you most about the erotica genre?

To be honest with you, there is an awful lot I don’t like about it. There is so much real dreck out there, but that’s a purely subjective view, and wholly mine. What I look for in a decent book whatever the label, is a story I want to finish, characters I want to cheer for and see succeed or at least grow and some well written sex scenes included as part of the plot.

3. Pepperoni pizza or sushi?

Pizza without a doubt. Although I lived in Japan a couple of years—I’m picky about my sushi and sashimi.

4. What is your favorite book in the series and why?

Wow---that is a tough one. I’m going with Floor Time, book 1. I worked very hard to craft characters that would compel readers to keep going, no matter how frustrated they are by how “real” they might act. 

5. Pick up your new book and turn to any page. Tell us what is happening.
Sara handed Lila another tissue, but her own eyes stayed dry. Observing the slow dissolution of her brother’s remaining family hurt, but pretty much everything hurt these days.
It was just, as they say, one more thing.
She patted the woman’s shaking shoulders, listened to her rant about Rob. But she hardly heard anything. The bubble wrap that seemed to encase her had not loosened as she hoped and prayed it would. And after a year, the wall between her and Jack approached Chinese construction standards. She watched, numb, while Katie and Maddie rolled around on the floor with their little brothers.
“Sara,” Lila said.
She turned her head slowly, noted she was late for work . “Yeah, sorry.” She tried a smile, but the other woman’s face remained frowning.
“Are you okay?” Lila’s black hair was shorter these days, and framed her heart-shaped face. Sara tried to focus on anything beyond that. Katie yelled when one of the little boys bopped her on the head with a plastic toy. The dog barked, wanting food. Her head pounded, throat ached with unshed tears. People needed her. She rose, pressed her skirt down.
“Yes, no, who knows. But I am late for work. Will you be all right here with all this chaos?” She pointed to the kids on the floor. “The nanny will be here at noon. I … Jack was supposed to be home already.” she looked up, confused when she heard the door open, and the clink of keys, watch and fountain pen being deposited in their appointed spaces on the table by the front door. “He flew in on the red eye from the west coast last night,” Sara sat back down, suddenly exhausted and needing her husband’s arms around her more than her next meal.
Jack strolled in, still dressed in dark suit pants and a thoroughly travel-wrinkled white shirt. Her heart did its usual roll at the sight of him. But he didn’t look at her. More than once she’d demanded time to talk, requested his undivided attention for some serious conversation about his distance. He kept coming up with excuses to avoid her and given how chaotic their lives were with two kids, a dog and very busy careers, excuses were easy to come by. So she had held back the one thing she knew he required, telling him flat out that she would not be sleeping with him until they cleared the air with a long talk. They had not had sex, or actually exchanged words beyond the necessary logistics of work and children for seven months.
Jack smiled down at Katie who’d latched onto him, kissed her and was staring down at the two little boys. Brandis was standing up holding onto the couch, a recent trick and one Sara had dreaded since it meant mobility for a kid who was never still anyway. He made his slow way to the edge of the leather ottoman glaring at Gabriel whose bright blond hair was back lit from the sun coming through the large window. They were in a mortal battle over a single dump truck and warfare was escalating fast. Brandis had already pushed Gabe down on his butt once, but the other boy quickly recovered. In a funny toddler attempt at diversion, he’d handed Brandis a matchbox car giving Gabe enough time to grab the obnoxiously orange truck and drop to his knees to make a swift crawling getaway. Since Brandis seemed stuck hanging onto the furniture, he wailed and threw the car, hitting his sister in the temple, then dropped to all fours and chased Gabe to the kitchen. Katie followed them. “Mom!” She yelled. “They’re feeding the dog Cheerios. That okay?”
By the time Jack had arrived Brandis was in full-throated fury, just as Sara was trying to leave the house. The boy made a crawling beeline for his father, and Gabe followed. He was already pretty steady on his feet, the cheap plastic toy clutched to his chest as if it were the Hope diamond. The dog brought up the rear, lapping up the little round circles of processed sugar dropped in their wake.
“Hey sport,” Jack plucked his son from the floor, kissed him then did a double take when he saw the other boy. “Well hello there. Little Rob. Wow.”
Sara watched the scene unfold, silent, but thankful he at least acknowledged his own son. Since Brandis had such a raging temper he was usually screaming about something or throwing things or in his crib for a time out, which meant Jack could ignore him, leaving the discipline to her. Gabe stared up at Jack, thumb in his mouth, the truck still held tight.
“Pa!” Brandis glared at his father. “Mine.” He pointed down at Gabe. Brandis had developed clear speech patterns early and was on the verge of walking at a year as well. The kid was an eerie mirror image of the man holding him, Sara observed for the thousandth time. Jack bent down and put Brandis on the floor. The boy lunged for the truck but his father held him back.
“No. Share,” he said, reaching over and snagging one of the zillions of trucks scattered around the room. “Yours.” He pressed an identical cheap blue dump truck to Brandis’ small chest. The boy’s face lit up with joy and he dropped to all fours and rolled the thing back to the kitchen with Gabe tottering along behind, so they could resume kitchen demolition by cereal. The eager dog scampered after them.

6. Lemon water or a nice cold beer.

Well considering I own a mircro brewery and go by “Beer Wench” over ½ the time…you tell me. LOL.

7. What is the absolutely most on fire sexy scene you have ever
written-and what book is it in so we can all run out and get it to put
under our pillows at night?

Floor Time: The Open House Scene….trust me.

8. What plans do you have for the series and what is in your writing future?

This series has so many (somewhat rabid) fans (I’m not complaining—it’s great) that I plan to keep it going. I have a list of the proposed release topics and dates in the Documents section of my Facebook group: Romance For Real Life. The list includes a visit to The Suite, the BDSM club Jack once frequented in Detroit.

I also have a spin off series from it called the Black Jack Gentlemen, about an expansion soccer league and team.

9. Chocolate layer mousse cake or angel food with fruit (come on, you know you want the chocolate...) I save all my calories for alcohol. :)

10. What is your best advice for new writers in the erotica genre?

Please don’t copy. Please don’t use the word “purple” or “mushroom shaped” or “bulbous” no matter what you do. Please get really good editing if you decide to self publish. Please read some well-written erotica to see what works and what doesn’t. 

If you needed any other prompting to tell you what a great author Liz Crowe is, let me also sing her praises. I am beginning to read this series (reviews coming soon) and love her style of writing the real kind of romance that resonates with readers. Hot sex scenes that scorch the page mesh with characters you grow to love. Liz Crowe is one of my favorite authors and I know you will love her books as much as I do.

If you haven't read her outstanding book Paradise Hops, you must check it out! Learn about beer, read some spicy love scenes and have a great time!


Escalation Clause (pre-order link – -


 Microbrewery owner, best-selling author, beer blogger and journalist, mom of three teenagers, and soccer fan, Liz lives in the great Midwest, in a major college town. Years of experience in sales and fund raising, plus an eight-year stint as an ex-pat trailing spouse, plus making her way in a world of men (i.e. the beer industry), has prepped her for life as erotic romance author.
When she isn't sweating inventory and sales figures for the brewery, she can be found writing, editing or sweating promotional efforts for her latest publications.

Her groundbreaking romance subgenre, “Romance for Real Life,” has gained thousands of fans and followers who are interested less in the “HEA” and more in the “WHA” (“What Happens After?”)

Her beer blog is nationally recognized for its insider yet outsider views on the craft beer industry. Her books are set in the not-so-common worlds of breweries, on the soccer pitch and in high-powered real estate offices. Don’t ask her for anything “like” a Budweiser or risk painful injury.


Liz will be awarding prizes to three randomly drawn commenters during the tour: a signed copy of the new release (either ebook or print); $100 Amazon gift card; and a gift of Stewart Realty (Zazzle) swag of choice. 


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. thanks for posting the excerpt and your kind words.

  3. High praise, I'm taking note. That was some excerpt I have to say.


  4. nothing like a quick warm up on a cool fall morning, eh Mary?
    thanks again for having me Erzabet!

  5. So great to have this tour and be able to recommend the great books Liz Crowe has written. I am a huge fan after just discovering Liz a few months ago. The Stewart Realty series is well written, hot as hell and always leaves you wanting more. Romance for Real Life could not be more apt.

  6. I love Liz's books! She really makes your heart pound and you can't help but fall in love with her characters. It is an honor to have her on the blog today.

    Thanks Liz!

  7. Thanks for the excerpt today. While I was reading it, I got to thinking...What was the most romantic thing one of your characters said or did?

    kareninnc at gmail dot com

    1. Karen, I'd say that between the 2 main characters of the first 3 books it would definitely be their date at The Chop House, late in Closing Costs (book 3). Very very romantic, for various reasons. Of course, there is probably an argument to be made for Sara's Swim Lesson in book 2, just saying. let me know what you think after you read them.

  8. Great interview! I love the "I save all my calories for alcohol" answer, LOL.

  9. Love the Stewart Realty series! Read Escalation Clause in under 48 hours...keep up the good work, Liz!

  10. Thanks for the great review and hot excerpt, I am going to have to check out the open house scene in Floor Time too!

    fencingromein at hotmail dot com

  11. Great excerpt and interview.


  12. "Ok you game for two of us?" He ran his fingers down her neck across the tops of her breasts. "Depends. The other on look like you?"...he turned he around of her bare shoulder and pointed at Blake...."Really?"..."Really"...."Now. That's him. Go dance, seducing him. I'll be watching."

    THE NIGHTCLUB SCENE FROM ESSENCE OF TIME... the pages the follow are SMOKIN, can you imagine talking to Rob and then having him point out Blake :)... and Blake and Rob kissing over her shoulder, holding hands during.... Liz at her best, hot sex and emotions all in one scene

  13. LOVED Floor Time and am looking forward to catching up with the rest of this series:)

  14. Great interview. Agree with author about Floor Time and the hot open house scene.My favorite romantic scene is Jack and Sara's date for dinner at Chop House. To date Floor Time is the best because that is where I fell in love with MS. Crowe's writings and Jack Gordon. With that said each book keeps topping the first so you just can't go wrong here but important to stress must be read in order to understand the story line!

  15. This sounds very intriguing!


  16. Thanks for the excerpts (book 1 and your newest release)...they were terrific and real teasers for the books! You're a new author to me and I'm heading over to check out this series!

  17. I cant emphasize how much I love this Stewart Realty Series! I love how the characters get richer and deeper as the series progresses. By 'Escalation Clause', everyone in these books is so real to me and I find myself feeling a part of their lives. As I'm 50, I love that Liz keeps it real with the love and sex as they all age. And the sex is the hottest! As much as I love 'Floor Time', this one is now my favorite-or at least tied! I find myself wishing I could buy tons of print copies of the series and stand on a street corner giving away! If you havent read this series, you are totally missing out!
    Mary H-M


Thanks for commenting!