Wednesday, April 7, 2021

Interview & Excerpt ~ CONSEQUENCES OF PASSION by Yahrah St. John

Consequences of Passion (Locketts of Tuxedo Park, #1)
by: Yahrah St. John
Series: Locketts of Tuxedo Park
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: April 1, 2021
Publisher: Harlequin Desire
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When a winning bachelor bid leads to unexpected consequences…

Psychologist Shantel Wilson surprises herself by attending a bachelor auction as a favor to her friend—and bidding on his older brother! The outcome of her steamy night with Roman Lockett, heir apparent to an Atlanta football dynasty? She’s expecting. Now Roman wants to claim her—and his child—yet Shantel needs more than a marriage of convenience from this man who put passion in her playbook…


Hi Yahrah. Welcome to Read Your Writes Book Reviews. How are you?
Hi Kim. Thanks so much for having me. I’m doing good. I’m excited about the release of my 37th book Consequences of Passion.

Wow. Congratulations! First of all, thank you so much for agreeing to be interview by me. I’m super excited to have you here. Tell me about the Locketts of Tuxedo Park series and what readers can expect from it. Also, how many books are there going to be?
Readers can expect steamy and dramatic love stories with the lovable and sometimes dysfunctional Lockett family. The four-book series will feature siblings: Roman, the eldest, and heir apparent to the throne. He has a hard time living up to his father’s expectations and is ready for his father to step down as General Manager. Then we have Julian, the middle and often overlooked middle son and screw up in the family. There’s Giana, the hard-nosed boss lady determined to prove she’s as good as any man and doesn’t need love, and finally, there’s Xavier Lockett, the baby in the family and former quarterback who’s struggling to live in a world where he doesn’t play football.

The idea for the Lockett’s of Tuxedo Park came a few years ago. I was watching an old tv series on USA Network called Necessary Roughness. I wondered what it would be like if I created a series about a family who owned a football franchise, thus the idea was born.

What can you tell readers about Shantel Wilson and Roman Lockett?
Roman is the oldest son. He’s the Chief Operating Officer/Executive VP for the Atlanta Knights. He’s second in command to his father and makes sure everyone knows it. Some consider him arrogant and smug because he was born with a silver spoon in his mouth. Yet, he’s never felt good enough. Roman is always trying to please his father, but always coming up short. Roman dates frequently, but has high standards because of his parent’s forty-year marriage. He hasn’t been able to find a woman good enough for him.

Shantel is Roman’s brother Julian’s best friend and a psychiatrist. Her mother committed suicide when she was a teenager and it sent her life on a different trajectory which made her lose her first love. Shantel isn’t sure if she ever wants a family because she wouldn’t want to pass along mental illness. She has a close-knit family with her father, brothers, and sisters-in-law. She holds those she loves close because she knows what it’s like to lose someone she loves.

What attracts the two to each other, when they’ve known of each other for years?
Julian, Roman’s brother, asks Shantel to attend a bachelor auction and bid on him, but Julian is a no-show. So, Shantel finds herself solo where she encounters Roman and they share a flirty moment. She’s surprised to find herself bidding for him because he’s never paid attention to her in the past. After the auction, Roman suggests a nightcap which turns into a steamy night of passion.

The next morning, however, Roman is gone with a farewell note stating he had a good time. Shantel is mortified by her uncharacteristic behavior and vows to forget him. Roman made a quick exit from the hotel because the feelings Shantel evoked after one night scared him. He never thought that their one night of passion could turn into more.

I loved that you put so many tropes into the story. It’s a best friend/sibling, surprise pregnancy, marriage of convenience romance. But so much more. I really liked that you showed a guy and girl could be friends, without sex or physical attraction being part of the relationship. I’m speaking of Shantel and Julian. Tell me about their relationship.
The friendship bond Shantel and Julian have in which they are each other’s sounding board is familiar to me. I speak from experience as I have a good friend who just so happens to be the opposite sex. Julian was there for Shantel when her mother died just as my friend was there for me when I lost someone near and dear. Their friendship never crosses the line, but instead he’s like a big brother making sure Roman treats her right. I wanted to show it’s possible to have that dynamic without having a physical element.

I loved that Shantel is/was Julian’s first priority. The series is about the Lockett family, who are African American owners of a professional football team in Atlanta, Georgia. You see a little of the family dynamics in Consequences of Passion. Will readers see more of Mr. and Mrs. Lockett in the other books, and how does the events of Consequences of Passion affect them and the family going forward?
Absolutely. Mr. Lockett is the patriarch of the family and rules his roost with an iron fist. He wants to be in charge, but quickly realizes his children are strong-willed with a mind of their own. He will have a large presence in each of the books as he meddles in his children’s lives. You’ll love to hate him. Mrs. Lockett is the consummate genteel Southern lady who loves and supports her kids. It was love at first sight for Angelique. She was attracted to this larger-than-life man with his big dreams which he made into reality. She was young and na├»ve when they met, but Josiah swept her off her feet and she’s never looked back since. She’s fiercely devoted to her children, having been a stay-at-home mom. She’s beloved in the community for her charitable works and kind spirit.

Storylines that start in Consequences of Passion will carryover in subsequent books to keep readers engaged and invested.

Oh. I was excited before for the rest of the series. Now, I’m more excited. What was your favorite part of this story to write?
Ooh, I love this question. No one has ever asked me this before. I loved the beginning which included the first kiss and love scene because Roman realizing he was interested in his brother’s best friend whom he’d never paid attention to. He’d never seen Shantel as a woman before and was unable to deny his attraction for her. The love scene was STEAMY!

The story deals with some serious issues. You’ve written suicide, infertility, and miscarriage into the storyline. Why did you feel the need to add them as part of the story?
I wanted to explain what drove Shantel to choose psychology and show the serious issues like suicide, infertility, and miscarriage she might deal with, and give readers a picture into her work life. I’d listened to Michelle Obama’s memoir as well as Anita Baker’s issues with infertility and miscarriages so I decided to include a woman going through that struggle and the affect it might have on Shantel who’s pregnant.

What’s next for you and this series?
Next up in September will be Blind Date with the Spare Heir, Julian Lockett’s story. Here’s a sneak peek.
Julian Lockett has always felt like the spare son. If his older brother Roman Lockett didn’t live up to their father’s Josiah Lockett’s expectations to run the Atlanta Knights, the family’s football franchise, Julian was next in line. Julian chose medicine instead, but his father demanded Julian pursue sports medicine ensuring he would stay in the fold as a team doctor.

His mother Angelique Lockett has match-making on the mind, but her failed attempts lead Julian to meeting Elyse Robinson. They embark on a love affair, but Elyse, however, has a secret. She’s the daughter of Frank Robinson, Josiah’s one-time partner. Elyse blames Josiah for stealing the football empire from her father. Instead of discovering a Lockett weakness by dating Julian, Elyse finds herself falling in love with the hunky doctor.

When Julian discovers her true identity, will love win out or will revenge?
Blind Date with the Spare Heir sounds good. I’m looking forward to reading it. Yahrah, thank you so much for taking the time to answer some questions for me. Congratulations on your new release.

He’d found her.

Suddenly the night he hadn’t been looking forward to had taken an unexpected turn. His mood became considerably lighter as he extricated himself from several hungry females with dollar signs in their eyes to find the demure woman in the pink dress. But when he finally did, recognition dawned.

“Do we know each other?” he inquired, searching her arresting face. She wasn’t classically beautiful like many of the models and actresses he typically dated, but there was a freshness to her symmetrical features, proud nose and pink kissable lips.

Her eyebrows rose and he could feel her bristle. “Is that what you say to all the ladies, Roman?”

“So you do know me?”

She rolled her eyes and Roman watched, transfixed, as she moved to step away from him. “Wait.” His hand jerked out to clasp around her upper arm, and a jolt of awareness rushed through him. Does she feel it too? It didn’t appear so because she glanced down at where he still held her, and he released her arm. “I’m sorry, but are you going to introduce yourself?”

“Roman.” She suppressed a sigh. “It’s Shantel Wilson, Julian’s friend.”

“Shantel?” He leisurely swept his gaze over her and was rewarded when a blush stole up her cheeks. “You look stunning.” He hadn’t recognized her. Her hair hung in soft curls down her back, her makeup was artfully applied and she had on killer heels making her nearly reach his chin.

“Thank you.”

“You’re welcome.” His mouth creased at the corners into a full-blown smile. “What are you doing here?”

“That brother of yours convinced me to come and bid on him and then he’s a no-show. Can you believe that?”

Roman chuckled. “I can.” Julian was known to be unreliable at the best of times.

“Anyway, I was about to leave.”

“You can’t.”

One eyebrow rose.

“I mean, if you’re already here, you might as well stay.” Roman didn’t want her to leave. Shantel Wilson was the most interesting part of his evening.

“And why would I do that?”

“Because I’d like you to,” he responded. “And because I need you.”

A frown marred her face. “How’s that?”

He leaned forward and whispered in her ear. “I need you to protect me from the women in this room.” He turned her shoulder toward the ballroom. “Look at them. They’re vultures and I’m fresh meat.”

Shantel laughed and the sound was like an intoxicating elixir to his system. “So you’ll stay?” he inquired. “You can bid on me like you were going to bid on Julian. I’ll cover whatever amount it takes to ensure you’re the winning bid.”

“Are you sure about that?” she asked. “Some of these ladies look like they’re willing to bet the farm.”

“That may be so, but I’m more interested in the woman in front of me.” Ever since he’d seen her walk in, he’d been unable to turn away, and it was odd given they’d met before. Usually he never gave a woman a second look, but Shantel was different.

“Well, in that case, I guess I’ll stick around,” Shantel said with a smirk. “I mean, I have nothing else to do.”

Roman chuckled. “Don’t sound so eager.”

“I’m sorry,” Shantel said. “I don’t really know how to do this.” She motioned back and forth between them.

“Do what?”

“You know.” She blushed again and Roman was even more intrigued. What woman blushed at her age? Not many women surprised him, but she did. First her transformation and now a shyness he’d never noticed. Was that because she’d never fathomed a second glance?

“No, I don’t know. Why don’t you tell me?”

“The whole cat and mouse thing men and women do when they’re dating or trying to feel each other out,” Shantel responded. “I did my thesis on it back in college.”

“Your thesis? What did you study?”

“Psychology,” she offered. “It’s important to understand people’s reasoning behind how they behave.”

“And did your studies provide clarity?” Roman inquired.

“Sure they did. They taught me that I don’t understand a damn thing,” Shantel responded with a laugh, and Roman couldn’t help joining her. She had a naturalness to her missing in other women he encountered.

He wanted to learn more, but suddenly Giana was onstage announcing it was time for the Bachelor Auction to start and all participants were needed backstage. Roman hated to leave. “Will you stay?” he asked. “And bid on me, however much it takes.”

“Roman…”

He liked it when she said his name and if he had his way, she’d be saying it a lot more before the night was over. “Say yes.” Her eyes grew wide at the commanding tone in his voice, so he amended, “Please.”

“Fine. You’d better be worth every penny.”

Roman grinned widely. “Oh, I am.” He left her blushing from ear to ear. It appeared the night was looking up and wouldn’t be a complete bust, after all.

He made his way backstage and found Giana in a huff. He smiled into her dark brown eyes surrounded by clear chocolate skin similar to his. They’d both taken after their father’s dark coloring. “There you are. We were looking everywhere for you.”

“Sorry, I was otherwise engaged.”

Giana smothered a laugh. “Oh, I bet you were. I’ve already had a half dozen women ask how much I think it’ll take to win you for the night.”

“Oh Lord.” Roman rolled his eyes. He no more wanted to spend an evening in those women’s company than he would want a root canal. It was why he was happy to have an ace in the hole. Shantel would be the winning bid and when the night was over, he had every intention of taking the delectable beauty in his arms. All night long.

Roman glanced behind the curtain and saw Shantel standing toward the back of the room. His skin tightened and his muscles surged at the sight of her. He wanted to ravish her all night long, but he could only offer her tonight because he didn’t do commitment. Roman wondered what Julian would think about him getting intimate with his best friend. Would he consider it a betrayal of their brotherhood?

Just how far was he willing to go for one night with Shantel?

Purchase Consequences of Passion from:

The Locketts of Tuxedo Park Series:

You can read my review of Consequences of Passion here.

Blind Date with the Spare Heir releases August 24, 2021


Yahrah St. John became a writer at the age of twelve when she wrote her first novella after secretly reading a Harlequin romance. Throughout her teens, she penned a total of twenty novellas. Her love of the craft continued into adulthood. She’s the proud author of thirty-nine books with Arabesque, Kimani Romance and Harlequin Desire as well as her own indie works.

When she’s not at home crafting one of her spicy romances with compelling heroes and feisty heroines with a dash of family drama, she is gourmet cooking or traveling the globe seeking out her next adventure.

Places to find Yahrah St. John:

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