2024 covers

Welcome to the Dark Side!

We are writers mainly from Australia and New Zealand who write speculative fiction with romantic elements. Be it fantasy, paranormal, dark urban fantasy, futuristic and everything in between.

Tuesday 20 June 2023

DarkSider News: June 2023 - Part 2!


It's definitely Ugg boot weather here DownUnder. 
Rug up and enjoy our latest news.


A Romantic Rendezvous
ARRA Book Signing @RWAus conference
Sofitel Hotel, Sydney
12 August

will feature DarkSiders:

Donna Maree Hanson / Dani Kristoff
HM Hodgson
Leisl Leighton

Author list (which will get be kept updated)

Book Lovers Night
Romance Book Club
Functions by the Bay, Frankston
26 August

will feature DarkSider:

Leisl Leighton (who will also be doing a live reading)

Book Fair Australia
Exhibition Hall 1, Sydney Olympic Park
14-15 October

will feature DarkSider:

Leisl Leighton

and look out for the Romance Writers of Australia table. 


The Virgin Hunt Games Volume 6
Mel Teshco
Book 6, Virgin Hunt Games
Expected Release: 15 June


Morgana Dion, Princess of Aladdia, is hiding a secret. Her biological mother isn’t the queen. But although Morgana has commoner blood running through her veins, it won’t stop her from sacrificing everything she is to be in the Virgin Hunt Games and stop a vicious enemy from destroying her planet and her people. If that means submitting to King Leon—another royal from another, far more powerful world—and signing a contract to impregnate herself to his son, Garrett, who is one of ten hunters in the Games, then so be it. That Garrett is now more cyborg than man shouldn’t matter, he has more royal blood flowing through his veins than she’ll ever have.

Garrett might know his first name, but he has no clue who he really is. Only that he woke up with cyborg parts after an explosion all but tore him apart. These days he has more pressing concerns, thanks to living in a squalid, dog-eat-dog prison ship in the middle of space. When he’s given as opportunity to fight for his place as a hunter in the Virgin Hunt Games, he jumps at it. After all, the victor will never again return to the space prison.

But though he’s prepared for a society who will never really accept him, nothing can prepare him for the one hunted he wants in the games, a woman who looks at him with equal parts loathing and desire.
But if beauty really is skin deep, can he convince Morgana that there is more to him than what she sees?

Each book in the Virgin Hunt Games series is a STANDALONE.


Cover by Eleni Konstantine's alter ego, HelzKat Designs.

Moon Cursed
D.D. Line
Part 2The Artemis Curse
Released: 11 June 

A new term. A wicked spell. An end to innocence and lies.

University never looked so good. Karisa caused a stir with her wandless magic and survived a shadow mage attack. With a magical lacrosse championship and a winter ball to celebrate, there’s a  growing sense of camaraderie at Takoda.

But not everyone is keen to embrace Karisa’s secret quest.

Garrett Huxley is a wizard with an attitude—and the reputation to match. He’s got her in a daze, and she never knows what to expect from him. But Garrett is the key to unlocking the most stubborn of the guilds. Karisa must learn to place her trust in him and what she feels in her heart, whatever the cost.

The Shadow Master is closing in, and his spies are everywhere. There’s only thing Karisa fears more than Donovan Tempest. The Artemis Curse may have finally found her, and the consequences could be devastating.

Moon Cursed is the second book in the 5-part story, The Artemis Curse. Parts one through to four ends on a cliffhanger, with the fifth book concluding the tale. Part Three, Moon Set, will be available later in 2023.

Kingdom of Curses and Lies
anthology including story Transit by
Lilliana Rose
Released: 11 June

Prepare to embark on an extraordinary journey, where the boundaries of possibility fade away, and the realms of imagination unfold. Welcome to the mystical kingdoms, where curses and lies weave a tapestry of intrigue, where every corner holds secrets waiting to be unraveled. Brace yourself for a symphony of magic, mayhem, and romance.

Join our valiant heroes as they rise against suppression, their spirits aflame with defiance. Witness their heroic struggle to save their worlds from impending doom, forging alliances both unexpected and unbreakable. In the midst of chaos and adventure, hearts intertwine, kindling flames of love that burn with an intensity that defies all odds.

Don't miss your chance to experience this breathtaking collection, perfect for fans of Leigh Bardugo, Sarah J. Maas, Stephanie Meyer, and Cassandra Clare. Scroll up and embark on a journey that will ignite your imagination and leave you yearning for more. One click is all it takes to uncover the extraordinary.

***This is a collection of nine young adult and new adult fantasy stories.***

Non spec-fic

Anna Hackett
Book 6, Sentinel Security
Released: 15 June

She’s the genius hacker known as Hex.

He’s a ghost—the deep-cover spy known only as Shade.

They generate a dangerous level of white-hot sparks, but he needs her help on a deadly mission.

Jet “Hex” Adler loves being a goddess of all thing tech. She provides her team at Sentinel Security with intel and comms, and she’s good at it. No, brilliant. Sure, sometimes it’s hard to be stuck in the office while her guys are in the field, but computers, tech, and drones are her thing. If only she had the same luck with men.

And that does not include a certain hot, cocky, annoying spy.

Cain aka Shade is dedicated to his country. He does the hard, dangerous work so others don’t have to. He came from nothing, he’s alone, unattached. A man like him has nothing to lose. For Cain, life is always about the mission. It can never be about a certain small, smart, feisty hacker.

But now he needs Jet for an important assignment to stop high-tech drone schematics falling into enemy hands.

Of course, Jet will do anything to help save the world…okay, not the entire world, but a lot of innocent lives. Even if it means going undercover with the man who knows how to push every one of her buttons. But as they work together, dodging danger and bad guys, their scorching attraction explodes…and Cain will realize that for the first time in his life, someone is more important to him than his mission.  

Anna Hackett
Book 5, Sentinel Security
Released: 13 June

He never should have touched her.

She’s beautiful, sweet, and all sunshine. He’s too old, too rough, and too grumpy.

Now she’s pregnant with his baby and in danger, and there is nothing he won’t do to keep her safe.

All Adaline Harris ever wanted to do was escape her small town and make it as a ballet dancer in New York. But luck is never on her side. Just when she’s found the big, gruff man of her dreams, he ghosts her…leaving her with a broken heart, pregnant, and unable to dance. Oh, and added to that, someone is sending her creepy notes.

But then Bram O’Donovan walks back into her life, takes one look at her, and sweeps her into his brawny arms.

Bram “Excalibur” O’Donovan knows he’s rough, curt, and isn’t good with people. The military suited him just fine, and now, so does working for Sentinel Security. He never expected to have a chance with sweet, gorgeous Addie. The week he spent in her bed was the best week of his life…until she disappeared without a trace.

Finding her working in a bar and pregnant with his baby is a shock.

But after discovering Addie thinks he abandoned her and that someone is hunting her, Bram is determined to uncover what’s going on. Someone is trying to keep them apart, and wants her for themselves. Bram will go all out, and use all his dangerous skill set, to keep Addie safe, and claim her as his, once and for all.

Pine Creek Box Set One
Maggie Rose
Books 1-3, Pine Creek
Released: 15 June

Box set Includes
Dangerous Love
Heartbreak Love
Risky Love
Dangerous Love
Ten years ago, I lost the man I loved.
It nearly broke me, but my daughter kept me going.
After something like that you don't believe you will love again.
Then Luke came into my life.
The moment he got out of his pickup I knew I was in trouble.
He looked hot, dark and dangerous and I wanted him.
He was just traveling through.
I could have a fling, couldn’t I?
Then I would walk away and go back to my life.

I'm on the run and need to keep moving, or I could end up dead.
I don’t have time for relationships.
But when I saw the way Evie's blouse stuck to her curves in the hot sun, I was lost.
The truth is, most women run when they see me.
She didn't. In fact, when her eyes meet mine I know she wants the same thing.
I could stay a few days, couldn’t I?
Trouble is, I have a feeling one taste of her body will not be enough.

Heartbreak Love
I always wanted to be a dad someday.
Like way in the future after I've had some fun.
It seems like that day is here.
How the hell do I convince someone to have a kid with me?
Because time might just run out.
Now come to think of it.
Isn’t that what best friends are for?

My best friend’s brother is freaking hot.
We’ve always had a connection but he is untouchable because of my bond to his sister.
And there’s the possibility of ruining two friendships in one hit.
A risk too great in giving into lust.
Then he makes a special request, one that would unite us as a family.
I didn't see it coming.
I should say no.
But my heart knows he needs me to do this for him.
I only hope I don’t mess everything up for all three of us…

Risky Love
I like to party, hard.
I’m not looking for love.
Been there, done that and it doesn’t work.
Then Mila turns up with a surprise.
A five-year-old surprise called Matteo.

I left Pine Creek years ago for the big city
I worked hard as a chef and never asked for help from anyone.
I didn't plan on going back but my mother is sick.
The trouble is I am not going back alone.
I have a five year old surprise with me.

If you like Melanie Harlow, you will love these steamy contemporary romances.

Atair, Kat, Bawah or Top, Near, Bottom
Theresa Fuller
Book 4, Baba Malay Today
Released: 16 June in print

Precious Baba Malay is about to go extinct, but you can reverse the process by learning Baba Malay in clearly defined steps. This treasured language can be a part of your life, hopefully to be revived as it is spread through sharing this proven method.
Former assessor and examiner of the Higher School Certificate (NSW, Australia), Theresa Fuller, known fondly in the Peranakan community as Bibek Theresa, draws on her years of experience in the classroom to create the Baba Malay Today series - a range of chapter books with an easy-to-follow curriculum aimed at the beginner.

Books 1 & 2 - Interrogatory

Book 3 - Conjunctions

Book 4 - Prepositions

Book 5 - Antonyms

Book 6 - Essence


Sapa, Apa, Mana or Who, What, Where?
Theresa Fuller
Book 1, Baba Malay Today
Released: 24 May - now in ebook format

Precious Baba Malay is about to go extinct, but you can reverse the process by learning Baba Malay in clearly defined steps. This treasured language can be a part of your life, hopefully to be revived as it is spread through sharing this proven method.
Former assessor and examiner of the Higher School Certificate (NSW, Australia), Theresa Fuller, known fondly in the Peranakan community as Bibek Theresa, draws on her years of experience in the classroom to create the Baba Malay Today series - a range of chapter books with an easy-to-follow curriculum aimed at the beginner.

Books 1 & 2 - Interrogatory

Book 3 - Conjunctions

Book 4 - Prepositions

Book 5 - Antonyms

Book 6 - Essence

Covers by Eleni Konstantine's alter ego, HelzKat Designs.

Their Wicked Games
D.K. Hood
Book 19, Detectives Kane and Alton
Released: 13 June in all formats

As she scans the dark pine forest, the unmistakable sound of a twig snapping breaks the silent stillness. She isn’t alone. She begins to run but she hardly has time to scream before her world goes black…

On a secluded path near Black Rock Falls, three bodies lie bloodied and still—the arrows that killed them removed, and polished penny coins carefully placed on their frozen eyes. When Sheriff Jenna Alton and Deputy David Kane are called in, they are shocked to recognise the hallmarks of an infamous serial killer. But he’s been in prison for ten years.

Jenna is convinced that the attacker knew the trio and lured them into the forest. But who would want to harm three innocent teenagers? And how does a convicted murderer fit in? Jenna knows she must question James Earl Stafford—one of America’s most dangerous killers—if she’s to save more innocent young lives.

With Stafford refusing to give answers, Jenna is convinced that a copycat killer is stalking her small town. And her worst fears are realised when a local fisherman discovers another teenager’s lifeless body floating in the shallows of a local watering hole with the same penny coins covering her eyes.

As parents panic for their children’s lives, Jenna works around the clock to track down the murderer, but little does she know that one of her own team is now being watched. Can Jenna play the killer’s wicked game and prevent another life from being taken?


Mel Teshco
Book 3, Alien Fugitives
Expected Release: 1 July

She’s fed up with her mundane life. He yearns to escape the danger that surrounds him.

Jasper Finch wants to leave the Earth city of New Faxian behind where he and six other rares—the last surviving Strazans with extraordinary powers—are forced to live thanks to the freshwater river cutting through the city. Water nourishes his species and stabilizes their powers, which are volatile on Earth. A pity his relentless enemy is tracking him down. Then he meets an intriguing woman, and leaving becomes the furthest thing on his mind.

Suzy Grant is over her career as a car saleswoman, but then it’s fair to say she’s over everything and everyone…until a young man with afro hair and a ripped body walks into the car yard. That she is too old for him is as painfully obvious as his reluctance to buy a car. So why is he so reluctant to leave? But getting to know the real him comes at a price. He isn’t what he seems…and he has pitiless alien enemies that make her reconsider the serenity of her humdrum life.


Dark Moon Secrets
Lilliana Rose
Book 1, Witch Moon
Expected Release: 16 November

Chosen for a life she doesn’t want, Tanjie is been thrown into a magical world she never knew existed. She’s got powers that need to be controlled before she hurts someone.

Managing a store which is a cover for those who aren’t human. She’s the hope for the future.

Tanjie must learn quickly otherwise her mistakes will cost her life.

Their Pretty Little Monster
Mila Young 
Book 1, Monsters Night
Expected Release: 31 August 

Monsters ate my blurb...

Hell or Highwater
Mila Young and Harper A. Brooks
Book 8, Sin Demons
Expected Release: 31 August 

There's a baby on the way for Aria and her four demon lovers... so how about a tropical getaway before all hell breaks loose?

What could go wrong?

Mark Me
Mila Young
Book 4, Immortal Vices and Virtues: 
Her Monstrous Mates
multi-author series
Expected Release: 30 August 

Description coming soon...

A Relic of Magic & Frankincense
HM Hodgson
Book 3, Three Gifts Trilogy
Expected Release: 19 August

Two years undercover. One relic. No distractions. Templar Knight Cynane Montbard is on a mission, and nothing – not love gurus, hellbeasts, or even the sexiest daemon this side of hell – will stand in her way.

Rohan the Red, the deadliest daemon earthside, has been tasked with preserving the balance between hell and earth. But one mesmerizing, stubborn, kick-ass High Priestess is in his way.

Cyn has a strict no-daemon romance policy, especially for rogues like Rohan. Yet, they must join forces to succeed. And as their chemistry intensifies, secrets unravel and true identities emerge. But when the power of the relic of frankincense is revealed, their biggest risk won’t be love—it will be death for every soul in the human world.

Author note: This book is a steamy romance full of magical battle scenes where the body count is high, and with plenty of steam between the sheets (and out). Definitely one for 18+ readers!

Non Spec-Fic

The Sheikh's Royal Widow
Mel Teshco
Book 7, Desert Kings Alliance
Expected Release: 31 September

He’s running from the past. She’s afraid to face the future. Can they create a perfect today?

Princess Takisha Hakim never thought she’d desire another man again. Not after Sheikh Fayez’s rejection, and certainly not after her sick and depraved marriage to Sheikh Arif. She’s learned the hard way that wealth and power comes at a cost and accepts she doesn’t deserve to be loved. Then she sees gardener, Akeem Al-Jalal, and all her doubts fade away. Perhaps a commoner is just what she needs?

Akeem enjoys his simple life as a gardener. For the most part, hard, physical labor drowns out the memories of his past and helps him to forget about his family and the brutal war that made him the hero he never wanted to be. He might have been a killer in the past, but nurturing plants soothes his black soul. A pity his life gets complicated the moment the princess begins to take a personal interest.

He doesn’t belong in her world anymore…does he?

The Sheikh's Temporary Girlfriend
Mel Teshco
Book 8, Desert Kings Alliance
Expected Release: 30 December

She’ll do anything for her family. He’ll do everything to claim her.

After Amber Clayton lost her parents at the tender age of seventeen, leaving her and her older brother all alone in the world, she is determined her brother won’t now lose his marriage and his daughter thanks to his gambling addiction.

She’ll pay off his debts herself if need be!

Waitressing at a party for a sheikh who is renowned for giving his staff great bonuses seems like her lucky break…until she spills a whole tray of drinks over Sheikh Basam. Amber’s supervisor is furious and tells her she’s finished. But the sheikh has other ideas. Pulling her aside, he gives her a proposition.
Be his girlfriend for seven days. All she has to do is pretend to be in love with him and dissolve any idea of marriage between him and another woman, Maram, who is perfect for the role as his wife, if only he was attracted to her.

Of course Amber isn’t interested…until he tells her to name her price. Hope fills her from the inside out. Her brother’s gambling could be paid off for just seven days of inconvenience.

It seems too good to be true.

But without risk there is no reward.

All she has to do is keep her heart intact. Easy, right?

Covers by Eleni Konstantine's alter ego, HelzKat Designs.

Kakadu Dawn
Annie Seaton
Book 6, Porter Sisters
Expected Release: 30 June

When his father was jailed for a cold case murder, stockman Cy Prescott fled his life on the land. The victim was the birth mother of Dee Porter-Carey, his cousin’s wife and joint owner of Wilderness Station. Now that the Porter and Hardy families are connected by marriage, past events made it too difficult for Cy to hang around. Moving to a managerial job in livestock export at the port of Darwin, Cy cut ties with his family until circumstances put him in a position where he needs another job. Kane and Ellie Porter’s mango farm has expanded, and when Ryan approaches Kane seeking a job for his cousin, Kane is happy to employ Cy as assistant manager.

When horticulturist, Tarni Morgan, takes on a part-time position at the McClaren Mango Farm, it’s a chance for a new beginning in the Northern Territory. Hiding a tragic past, Tarni treasures her privacy. She is surprised when the property owner, Kane and his wife, Ellie leave on a three-month trip not long after she accepts the position, but is happy to house-sit in their absence.

The only downside is Cy Prescott, the relieving manager. As they work together, Tarni begins to realise that Cy holds secrets as she does, and fights her growing attraction to this taciturn man.

Can Cy and Tarni both overcome the past that has defined their lives? Is a new beginning in reach or will Cy move on again as he refuses to give in to his feelings for this enigmatic woman?

A Summer in Tuscany
Annie Seaton
Expected re-release: 16 August
Previously published as Ten Days in Tuscany

Gia Carelli is a talented artist who works in the family restaurant in Tuscany and dreams of a life where her strict parents allow her to move to Florence to pursue the art she lives and breathes. The expectation that she will marry a local boy and raise a horde of bambini, as the rest of her siblings have done, is one she fights to no avail.

When a gorgeous, wealthy stranger visits their village, Gia wonders if maybe her stars are about to change.

Nic Baldini has returned to his villa for a much-needed summer break away from the responsibilities of his dominating family. The joy and sadness of Gia’s paintings touch his soul; her raw talent and passion eclipse the art he has always dabbled in.

In order to gain Gia’s trust, Nic lies about his identity so he can assist her to organise an exhibition. As their patron-protegée relationship is quickly overtaken by desire, Nic realizes that one tiny lie could cost him the woman he's falling for. Will their intense attraction to each other allow their love to grow, or will the lies and deceit prevent a happy ever after?


Rogue Wolf
Lilliana Rose
Book 3, Protector Wolf Shifter
Expected Release: TBA

Moon Set
D.D. Line
Book 3, The Artemis Curse
Expected Release: September 2023


His Outback Temptation
Annie Seaton
Book 4, Prickle Creek
50% off audio format

Freelance photographer Sebastian Richards has put aside travelling the world to show his grandmother he is capable of helping out on the family farm, even though it's hard to let go of his wanderlust. But when he rescues a beautiful woman from a difficult situation, and Sebastian learns Isabella Romano is going to his hometown, heading back to Prickle Creek holds more appeal.

Isabella has come home to the Outback for a short visit to her father before she heads off to begin her dream job in England. Circumstances throw Isabella and Sebastian together at every turn-so maybe a short summer fling could be fun?

Isabella is determined to leave, even though her heart wants to stay. Sebastian is determined to stay, though his heart wants to go. But the only way for them to be happy is to take a chance on love.

Kakadu Sunset
Annie Seaton
Book 1, Porter Sisters
FREE for June

Helicopter pilot Ellie Porter loves her job. Soaring above the Kakadu National Park, she feels freed from the questions around her father’s suicide and the heavy loss of her beloved family farm. But when a search-and-rescue mission on the boundary of the old farm reveals unusual excavation works, Ellie vows to investigate.

The last thing she needs is her bad-tempered copilot, Kane McLaren, interfering. He's the son of the current owners of the farm, and her attraction to him is a distraction she can’t afford, especially when someone threatens to put a stop to her inquiries - by any means necessary.

Ellie must trust Kane if she is to have any hope of uncovering the truth. Between Ellie’s damage and Kane’s secrets, can they find a way to open up to each other before the shadowy forces shut her up...for good?

Her Outback Playboy
Annie Seaton
Book 1, Second Chance Bay
FREE for June

Jenni McDougal’s family have worked hard to build their fishing and charter business in the remote coastal outback town of Second Chance Bay.

Jake Jones, her childhood sweetheart, was once the poor boy from the wrong side of town. When he blows into town after making his fortune and expects to pick up where they left off, Jenni fights every move he makes.

Jake knows that Jenni will always see him as a playboy, and can’t trust him, and his self confidence disappears when the town judges him on his past. Every time he tries to help her family business, she sees an ulterior motive.

If Jenni can't trust him, what is there to keep Jake in Second Chance Bay?

But can he leave the woman he loves a second time?

Whitsunday Dawn
Annie Seaton
Currently on sale!

With the pristine beauty of the Whitsundays under threat, can they expose the truth in time?

Australian author Annie Seaton brings to life a new area of romance — Eco-Adventure. Perfect for fans of Di Morrissey.
When Olivia Sheridan arrives in the Whitsundays as spokesperson for big mining company Sheridan Corp, it should be a straightforward presentation to the town about their proposed project. But when a handsome local fisherman shows her what ecological impact the proposal will have, Olivia is forced to question her father's motives for the project.

Struggling with newly divided loyalties, Olivia is thrown further into turmoil when she is mistaken for a woman who disappeared more than sixty years before. When it becomes clear that Captain Jay is also keeping secrets, Olivia realises that there is more to these sunshine–soaked islands than she ever expected.

Seeking to uncover the truth, Olivia is drawn into a dangerous game where powerful businessmen will stop at nothing to ensure their plan goes ahead, even if that means eliminating her…

Against the epic Far North Queensland landscape, this is the story of two women, separated by history, drawn to Whitsunday Island where their futures will be changed forever.


Annie Seaton
Currently on sale!

Within the treacherous caves of Undara, a betrayal will test the bonds of friendship and family. A page-turning new eco-adventure for readers who love Di Morrissey.

When entomologist Emlyn Rees arrives at Hidden Valley she wants nothing more than to escape her marriage breakdown by burying herself in the research team's hunt for new species of insects in the depths of the dramatic Undara lava tubes. However, little does she suspect she will be the key to solving a mystery that's more than one hundred years old.

Travis Carlyle is initially resistant to letting some city folks tramp over his cattle station, but soon the researchers' findings and a growing friendship with Emlyn bring opportunities to turn around his struggling farm. With a broken marriage behind him and children to care for, Travis needs to plan for the future and this could be his family's best chance.

But when things start going wrong for the farm and around the dig site, Emlyn and Travis are at a loss to understand why. Are they cursed with bad luck, or is there a more sinister force at play? Are the tall tales of enigmatic stockman Bluey turning true? As the unseen saboteur grows bolder, Emlyn and Travis are caught in a race against time to save the station ... and their lives.

Beach House: Rosie
Annie Seaton
Book 1, The House on the Hill
Currently on sale for 99c!

Rosie Pemberton has her life mapped out, and her tarot cards agree. The cards take a turn, though, when her aunt leaves the old house on the hill above Australia’s Bondi Beach to champion surfer Taj Brown. Three months sharing a house with a pinup would test any woman’s self-control…

Check out the special deals each month on Annie's website


Mila Young

Cursed Wolf has now been translated to German

Mila has regretfully withdrawn from attending London RARE.

D.K. Hood

D.K. has signed another contract for a further five books with Bookouture, publisher of her Detectives Kane & Alton series and the upcoming Katz and Styles series.

Lilliana Rose

If you want to be a part of the Rogue Wolf blog book tour, go to Silver Dagger Book Tours.


Congratulations to our DarkSiders.

Thanks for joining us. Until next time, be safe and well.

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