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IGNITE: a shifter and rockstar romance audiobook

IGNITE: a shifter and rockstar romance audiobook

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A guarded shifter. A nerd turned rock star.

I avoid relationships because of my furry little secret. It makes me a freak. No one would understand my affliction during the full moon. 

But when I meet Nico, the singer of a rock band, at an underground goth club, his sensual voice enchants me. 

"The chemistry between Lily and Nico is off the charts."

Don't Miss this Top Pick from both Night Owl Reviews and The Romance Reviews!

Main Tropes

  • Shifters
  • Rockstars
  • Secrets
  • Irresistable attraction
  • Nerdy
  • Cursed hero


A guarded shifter. A nerd turned rock star.

Opposites attract in this paranormal romance with damaged heroes and dangerous secrets.

I avoid relationships because of my furry little secret. It makes me a freak. No one would understand my affliction during the full moon. 

But when I meet Nico, the singer of a rock band, at an underground goth club, his sensual voice enchants me.

He's a computer geek by day, and rock star by night. Incredibly smart and devilishly attractive. How could anyone resist such a hot combination?

Or the way he sings with that British accent?

But getting too close will set us both up for a fall…

Ignite is a standalone romance in the Underground Encounters paranormal romance series. Step into a hidden world of shifters, vampires, witches, and gargoyles. Who will you take home tonight?

"The chemistry between Lily and Nico is off the charts… hot and steamy. They are a great match together in and out of the bedroom."

Don't Miss this Top Pick from both Night Owl Reviews and The Romance Reviews!

Chapter One


The sound of rock music assaulted my ears as we stepped into the club. Not what I was expecting when Ally and I had decided to go out dancing to celebrate my special occasion.

“The band is awesome!” Ally said.

Clearly, Ally thought otherwise.

We hadn’t checked the club’s calendar before we went out. I didn’t go out often, but tonight I was ready to unwind. All I did was work, work, work, and now it was finally paying off. A night off from being professional, boring, private Lily would be a welcome break.

I’d put on a red-and-black plaid dress, spiky-heeled boots, and chunky gold bracelets to go all out. My senses were overwhelmed by the sound of the pounding bass and the scents of alcohol and perspiration. I wasn’t used to the nightclub scene and it took a few moments for my unusually sensitive senses to adjust.

“Yeah, I guess. They’re all right,” I agreed and forced a smile. It was better than sulking.

“Give them a chance, Lily.”

Ally saw right through my subterfuge.

“I know this isn’t your thing,” she added, “but look at the crowd—they’re going nuts for a reason. We should join them.” She motioned to the people dancing in front of the stage. “Besides, the DJ will come out later and you can shake your fine little booty to some funky-ass music soon.”

“Little? Ha! You definitely need glasses,” I said. “I’m going to grab a drink first. Want one?”

Ally shook her head. “I’m moving closer to the stage. See ya in a bit.”

I watched her as she slunk into the crowd. She was hard not to miss with her dirty-blonde hair in shiny, thick curls hanging down the back of her slinky electric-blue-and-black dress, which definitely stood out among all the people wearing black. Within moments, the crowd filled in the spot into which her tiny body disappeared and I couldn’t see her anymore.

When I scanned the menu for something tasty, the Fruits of Temptation caught my eye. Plenty of fruit and plenty more alcohol. Perfect to hit the spot. I found an empty stool under one of the many gargoyle statues mounted at the end of the bar and focused on my drink. Mmm, yummy. I took little sips through a tiny straw. It went down so smooth, but I had better watch it or I’d be on my ass before I knew what happened.

When the crowd sang along with the next song, I was distracted from my cocktail. Who wouldn’t be—they were chanting the chorus to Let’s Fuck All Over Paris. What kind of crazy-ass song was this? My ears perked up as I tried to catch lyrics over the crowd.

No money, no hope

But in Paris, I cope

Sad ghosts fill the air

Joy and despair

Then the crowd revved up again to sing the chorus, “Let’s fuck all over Paris, Under the moon, under Polaris.” I looked for Ally but didn’t see her. She was probably among those jumping near the front of the stage. Was she singing along too? From this vantage point, I only caught glimpses of the band through the pulsating crowd waving their arms.

I had to admit, Velvet Cocks rocked hard. Real hard. I knew very little about them except they were popular in Boston’s underground rock scene. Now hearing them play live at Vamps, I understood how word spread fast. Their energy spilled over into the crowd as they played short original songs and punk-style remakes of classics.

I’d never been to this club before, never even heard of it. When Ally had suggested we go out to celebrate my new promotion, she said, “I know the place.”

I only had time to check out the homepage of the website at work. It introduced itself as an underground club with live bands, goth, punk, new wave, alternative, and the best music from the vault, whatever that meant. There were no pictures of people on the homepage, only a few images of gargoyles and a spooky-looking sign reading “Abandon Hope All Ye Who Enter Here.” I wasn’t sure what to expect.

With the number of gargoyle statues around, from the ones guarding the front door to the ones hanging inside the main dance area, I understood why they were the prominent theme on the website. What struck me was the crowd. They wore all kinds of sexy outfits designed to attract attention, mostly black. Leather pants, catsuits, tight black dresses, schoolgirl outfits and outfits consisting of tiny vinyl straps I assumed were purchased from a fetish shop.

“Wow,” was all I could say when we’d walked in.

“What is it?”

“I’ve never seen so many—freaks—in one place at a time.”

Ally had said, “Keep an open mind. Don’t make judgments, dance without a care in the world, and you’ll have the time of your life. I promise you that.”

“I didn’t mean freaks in a bad way. I’ve never been in a club like this. They’re just—wow.”

“You’re just wow. And I bet you’re a closet freak.”

“Ha. Hardly. What you see is what you get, baby.”

She’d laughed. “Your outfit doesn’t leave much to the imagination tonight.”

“You said dress slutty. This is the best I could come up with.”

“I know. I know. You look great.”

I tried to have an open mind as Ally had suggested, yet stayed back while she’d moved closer to the stage. The band finished the song about fucking in Paris on a heavy rift and the singer said, “This next song goes out to Maya, a very special lady, from her eternal admirer.”

When he spoke, I detected a slight accent, maybe English, which wasn’t very noticeable when he sang.

Damn, that dedication was sweet. It must be nice to have someone so into you they’d request a singer to send a shout out to you declaring their feelings. I quickly ran through the guys I’d dated the last few years. Not a chance any of them would ever take that initiative. They were all too emotionally cut off to ever reveal something as personal as feelings. Then again, I wasn’t exactly professing any kind of eternal love either. Definitely not in the way this admirer was professing for this Maya. In fact, with my exes, I’d insisted we keep things casual. Physical. My dual nature demanded it. That inner kitty purred for affection like she was often in heat.

But that was my hang-up. No guy would be able to handle my furry little secret.

My thoughts were distracted as I strained to hear the opening of the song. He sang so softly, I barely made out the lyrics. Then his croon turned into a seductive opening of a song I recognized. #1 Crush by Garbage, an admittance of obsessive love. How the hell did he make it sound so tormented and yet so damn sexy all at once?

I wanted to see this guy who was exacting complete control over the crowd. He had them worked up into a frenzy during the last song and now they had settled into a hypnotic sway as they listened to him sing with such intense longing. He delivered it with such a painful croon, almost haunted. I finally caught a glimpse of him.

Holy hell.

I was not expecting someone so—so—like him.

He was wearing a plaid green-and-black cap, but I saw his dark brown hair was cut close to his scalp. He looked so young and innocent at the same time. I pegged him to be in his mid-to-late twenties. I was going to hit that mid-twenties mark later this year.

I stood up on the rung of a stool to get a better look. He was also playing bass guitar. His outfit included camouflage pants tucked into black combat boots, a silver-studded black belt, and a torn black shirt. Tattoos galore extended from beyond his shirtsleeves. The whole combination gave him a look of a total badass. Dangerous and sexy.

My mouth half dropped as I listened, entranced, to his voice. And his face. It should be a crime to look so good and yet sing so hardcore.

As if reading my thoughts, the guitarist launched into a punk riff, transforming the song to a hard-and-heavy tempo and diverting my attention to him. While the singer had more of a military/punk rock look, the guitarist wore some outrageous sort of costume. He sported a brown, sleeveless tunic that covered his torso and ended in strips over his upper thighs after being fastened by a thick black belt with an oversized silver piece. His legs were bare and his feet were covered with giant black boots covered with spikes. With his mussed-up shoulder-length hair, he looked as if he’d stepped out of another time and place, like from one of those fantasy video games. I pictured him wielding a silver, jeweled sword or some other weapon rather than the modern electric guitar he shredded the new tune on.

The drummer appeared subdued in comparison to the two of them. He wore dark colors and blended in behind the drum set, which had the Velvet Cocks logo—a rooster wearing a smoking jacket and an ornate V and C. The font appeared Victorian and proper. Misdirection perhaps as to the actual naughty words?

The singer followed suit and his croon turned from soft and haunting to an almost primal scream of yearning. The singer motioned to a couple of people in the crowd.

“Come on up here for the next song. I think we all know this one. We put our spin on it. Come on, everyone now, sing along.”

The Velvet Cocks then sang a version of Witchcraft, only their style was fast and heavy, so unlike Frank Sinatra’s version it was like another song. The two women he pulled onstage were on either side of him now, singing along. I turned away from them to face the bar as I became aware I had started feeling uncomfortable.

Why? I focused once again on my drink as if I’d find some insight there. But then I was afraid of what I’d come up with so I focused on the crowd.

Some songs later, the two women who had climbed onstage approached two men at the bar. I hadn’t noticed the men before, but they were both attractive, although in different ways. One was dark and somewhat mysterious looking with eyes always on the move, scanning the entire club. The lighter one sported facial stubble and looked far more suave and comfortable in his surroundings. The tall woman with straight black hair and bangs spoke to the dark one while the one with auburn hair walked up to the other one. Their close stances clearly signaled they were couples. For some reason, this made me feel better knowing neither woman was with the singer. I didn’t want to analyze why.

A woman near me spoke loudly enough to her friend for me to overhear. “I think that guy’s the owner. And that’s his girlfriend.” When I followed who she was looking at, it was the dark-haired couple.

Her friend replied, “But didn’t the other guy near him own this club before the fire?”

“Yeah, I think you’re right. I haven’t seen him here for a long time.”

Fire? What fire? Obviously, these women had been regulars for a while to know the club’s history and who’s who.

When the set ended, Ally found me at the bar. “Awesome, right?”

I shrugged. “Yeah, they’re cool.”

“Did you see the guitar player? Chee Keydood. He’s so friggin’ hot it almost kills me. I want to run my fingers through his mussed-up hair and oooh.” She scrunched her hand to mimic the action.

“Nice name.” I took a sip of my drink. “I couldn’t see too well. But yeah, he looked all right. Not my type though. I’m not into guys with long hair.”

She widened her eyes as if I were crazy. “I guess that’s why we’re such good friends. We have such different taste in guys that we’d never fight over the same one.”

“Guess so.” I smiled and took a sip.

Ally waved a twenty-dollar bill at the bar. It didn’t take long for her to get noticed by the male bartender although several others were vying for his and other bartenders’ attention. With her long blonde hair and a dress so short and tight that it left nothing to the imagination, I doubt anyone that night could ignore Ally.

“I thought the singer was pretty cute,” I admitted.

“Leggy Bones? Really? Guess that proves my point.”

“Leggy Bones?” I repeated. “Where do they come up with these names?”

“Stage name, obviously. They’re a bunch of cheeky bastards.” As the bartender walked over, Ally looked at my glass. “Ready for another drink?”

I shook my head. “I still have this one.”

“We need to celebrate your promotion. Check you out—still in your twenties and already a director.” She gave me a nod of approval. “Not bad for a bookworm.”

“I’m not just a bookworm. I go out.”

“Oh real-ly.” Ally drew out the word with skepticism.

“Yes. I go—places.”

“Going to bookstores or the gym doesn’t count as going out. I mean out-out. Nightlife. Music. Dancing. Like this.”

“Well, I’m here now.”

“Yes, we are. Now let’s check out the eye candy after I get my drink.”

While Ally ordered, I scanned the club. Most of the crowd stuck around after the band played and the DJ took over. He began with a short, fast song to keep the energetic vibe. Also, to keep the people around who only came to see the show, I imagine.

After the bartender brought Ally her drink, she raised her glass. “A toast. To my beautiful, brilliant friend. Congratulations. You worked hard to get here and you deserve it.”

I tried not to blush. “Thanks, Ally.”

“What are we celebrating?” a male voice interrupted from behind me.

I rolled my eyes at Ally as if to say can you believe it. Some guy totally creeping in on my time celebrating with my girlfriend. However, she was widening her eyes in a shut up, shut up gesture.

Why? It wasn’t that shocking to have some guy hitting on you in a club.

“We are not celebrating anything.” I turned to face the intruder. My voice caught in my throat when I processed the interruption was spoken by a male with a slight English accent.

Yes, it was him. The singer of the Velvet Cocks. His face had appeared angelic under the spotlights up onstage. Now that he was only a foot from me, I saw a downright mischievous look about him, from the twinkle in his eye down to a slight smirk on his lips. His eyes were a bright hazel. I couldn’t miss the color and intensity highlighted by the lights in the bar area. And those lashes—so dark and thick.

“Oh, I apologize if I was interrupting. I thought I heard your friend here lauding your accomplishments and just wanted to extend my congratulations.”

Shit. I didn’t have to sound so cold. I could be such a bitch sometimes. Ugh. I replaced my haughty expression with one a little more neutral.

Something bothered me when he spoke. I didn’t expect it—the language he used. Lauding accomplishments? He spoke rather—what was it—educated? Not what I thought a punk rocker would sound like. I knew that was an unfair generalization, but in my defense, he belted out some crazy-ass lyrics onstage.

“You heard correctly,” Ally replied. “My friend hates having attention focused on her and gets all crabby about it.”

Besides his sultry voice and rugged good looks, his scent was unbelievably alluring. A mixture of the salty sweat from playing onstage and the distinctive musk of a human male. My inner kitty purred her approval. I resisted the urge to lean in and inhale deeply.

Leggy laughed. “And then a strange bloke sticks his nose into the mix to bring even more attention.”

“We’re celebrating her promotion.”

He turned to me. “That is a cause for celebration. Well done. Would you allow me to buy you champagne?”

“Um, no, that’s not necess—” I began, but then Ally cut me off.

“How generous of you. Yes, we’d love that.”

Want to find out what happens next? Keep reading IGNITE!

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