"First romance, first love, is something so special to all of us, both emotionally and physically, that it touches our lives and enriches them forever." ~ Rosemary Rogers
Gatekeeper featured Benton Smith, the ghostly hero in my first published romance and first Phantom Lovers series book. But did you know the hauntingly handsome Confederate General Smith has made cameo appearances in several of my books?
Here's a description from Gatekeeper ~
Jillian froze. She could not move. She could not breathe. The ghost she had seen in her vision stood before her. Dressed in a worn and double-breasted cadet gray, thigh-length frock coat, he was nearly opaque and looked as real as a flesh-and-blood man with the exception of appearing somewhat faded. Jillian gaped. The only thing separating them was the flimsy old card table and she doubted that would stop him if it occurred to him to come any closer. Her pulse pounded relentlessly.
“What’s the matter? Cat got your tongue?” He came closer, his boots resounding on the wood floor. Spurs jingled with each step.
Jillian’s back flattened against the chair. Her breath left her lungs in an audible rush. She had glimpsed ghosts many times before but never had one been this present, this alive. She stared. But it wasn’t because of his devastatingly rakish appearance—the roughly chiseled cheekbones, straight nose and curve of his sensual lips—it was because he looked so real and because she felt a very odd sense of recognition. Still, the static charge of energy emanating from him left her with no doubt he was a ghost.
Buy Gatekeeper in print or digital - Click HERE
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Benton Smith reappears in the second Phantom Lovers book, Shadowkeeper ~
Jillian stood in the bathroom drying her hair with a fluffy white towel. She heard the water shut off and watched as the shower door opened and Benton stepped out, dripping and naked, onto the beige bathmat.
His dark, wavy hair was tousled carelessly about his head. Rivulets of water beaded and ran down his corded neck and muscular chest. Jillian’s breath froze when her gaze landed on the scar marring his left shoulder. He’d taken a bullet during the battle of Murfreesboro—where his brother had died. The wound had followed him even into death.
Buy Shadowkeeper in print or digital - Click HERE
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My short story, Extra Sensual Perception, is included in the Flavors of Ecstasy I anthology. Set in Nashville, the hero lives on Benton Smith Road, a street named after the real Thomas Benton Smith. The road encircles Shy's Hill where Smith was captured during the Battle of Nashville.
Nashville traffic on a Friday afternoon was a bitch and when Iris finally turned onto Harding Place, she was thwarted by a long line of slow-moving drivers. Even switching on her hazard lights and honking her horn didn’t yield results.
When she ultimately arrived at Benton Smith Road, she turned and raced around the circle until she found the address. The driveway wound downward and when Iris saw a silver BMW in the garage, her heart sank.
The house looked sickeningly familiar. She’d seen it before—in her vision of his death.
Buy Flavors of Ecstasy in print or digital - Click HERE
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Benton Smith also makes a cameo appearance in Rebel Rose, a historical set in my home town of Florence, Alabama.
In October 1864, Confederate General John Bell Hood moved his twenty thousand strong Army of Tennessee through Florence Alabama on his way north to fight the battles of Franklin and Nashville.
Benton Smith's brigade was among them ~
Panic unfurled through her limbs and Rose tried to sit up but Dr. Roberts urged her back down on the pillows. “You’re not ready to get up just yet, Mrs. O’Kelley. Be still.”
Another Confederate appeared in the doorway. He looked to be about the same age as the young doctor and also surprised to see her awake. “How’s your patient?”
“She’s giving me more trouble than one of the boys, General Smith.”
The boy general’s dimples deepened with his handsome smile. “Mind the doctor, missy. He’s a good doctor. My only complaint is that he’s a little too fond of being at front for my taste.”
Buy Rebel Rose digital edition - (print coming 2011) - Click HERE
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For more information about the real Thomas Benton Smith, click HERE
*All books are also available at Amazon.com