Indie Flutters: Dragon Heart by Susan Arden – Review, Excerpt, Interview, & Giveaway

Dragon Heart

    • By Susan Arden
    • Editions: eBook & Paperback
    • Published: ONovember 10th 2014
    • Source:  Review by Request
    • Genre: Paranormal Erotic Romance
  • In a Flutter: Hot as Dragon Fire!




Leopardess Shay Barclay has a choice: go along with her family’s political plan to marry her to a ruthless shifter older than her grandfather or categorically claim her life and sensual nature as hers to rule.

She wastes no time in choosing freedom, but in her haste to establish her own boundaries, she just may have trusted her heart to the wrong man – a dragon shifter who’s too dangerous to resist…

Former Navy SEAL Drake O’Connor personally guaranteed he’d protect his buddy’s daughter to the death. But when his explosive chemistry with Shay finally boils over and they end up in bed, her family’s political enemies are the least of their problems.

Because although Shay doesn’t know it, she’s crossed a line with Drake that will alter their future for an eternity…

~ GoodReads

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Turns out, sex with a Dragon is as HOT as you think…

It’s a shame the blurb doesn’t really do justice to all the things happening in this book.

Unofficial Breakdown:
25% Romance
25% Action
20% Sexytimes
15% General Badassadry
10% Shifter politics
5% Fun Humor

This story was told in a dual point-of-view format between our main characters, and the flip POV really helped to clarify motives and emotions between two people who were pushing each other away on the outside, but falling hard and fast on the inside…

Shay is an American heiress who was taking a post-college luxury tour of Europe before returning to Colorado and her life as a grown up.

On the final leg of her journey she discovers her parents’ plot to marry her off to an old shifter – Dimitri Necrodemas – in order to gain political advantage. Needless to say, Shay is less than pleased with this idea…

Shay is an independent woman, and in an effort to retain that independence she decides to seduce her bodyguard… See, Necrodemas won’t want a wife that has been sullied by another Alpha. Plus, Shay’s been wildly attracted to Drake for a long time. Time to kill two birds with one sexy stone…

Drake is head of security for the Barclay Family in charge of protecting Shay in her travels. The human-shifter political situation is deteriorating into chaos with roving gangs and civil unrest. Europe is NOT a safe place, but Drake isn’t going to let anything happen to his charge.

Drake fights Shay’s advances as much as he can… Alpha-Dragon-Shifters like him don’t mate lightly. Sex with a dragon is… well HOT… And intense *fans self* Good God, the sexytimes in this book are fabulous!

The story started as your average “Good Girl goes bad for the Wrong (but it feels oh so right) Guy” but it quickly shifted gears and became a much more vibrant and original!

Gotta get something off my chest here – You know I’m not the type to post spoilers, so know that I gave this a lot of thought… At the 20% the reader discovers that the MC is knocked up, and since her pregnancy catalyst for everything which happens in the remaining 80% of the book, I feel that it’s necessary to bring it up. Unplanned pregnancies can be a trigger for some readers, and I wouldn’t want someone to have their good time spoiled if they’re less than enthusiastic about procreation.

The more I consider it, the more I think the blurb needs a makeover – one that gives hints to the action/adventure/political and also forewarns of the pregnancy plot-line…

There was a grand cast of characters which went beyond Shifters of all different species – Sure you had your usual wolves… But also Dragons, Leopards, Bears, Alligators, and a few others – this book also included Vampires, Fae, Witches, a couple of Phoenix, and even a Genie! I’m sure I’m missing a few in there somewhere… The diverse array of powers and abilities really kept me on my toes…

The secondary and tertiary characters added a punch of fun and humor to the story. I was particularly tickled to meet a Bear-Shifter with an addiction to honey who was in denial over his recent Type 2 Diabetes diagnosis…

Yeah, there was a lot of cute humor like that sprinkled throughout the book – it kept everything from getting too terribly serious while Shay and Drake were dealing with family obligations and trying to figure out shifty political maneuvering…

All in all, it was a fun story that kept me entertained!


She dropped the cask and it thudded to the floor as she studied his shadowy silhouette filling the doorway.

“Hello, Shay.” Drake’s low masculine voice cut through her thoughts with steel blade ferocity. “It’s been awhile.”

Holy goddess! She backed up a step, her knees suddenly weak, and her brain a malfunctioning sieve, unable to piece together how … why the man who’d turned her life upside down had found her.

“What the hell do you want?” she snarled, her leopardess on the verge of shifting.

“Kitten, that’s no way to welcome an old … friend,” Drake said, coming through the doorway dressed in motorcycle leathers. Same dragon bronzed skin. Still built like a Mack truck.

But it was his green eyes that held her captive once their gazes connected—more like locked. She fought against the unmistakable and very familiar tug on her body, a simultaneous thunderbolt and hooking that dove deep into her awareness. With a word … a look … now Drake had found her and her tenuous inner sanctum. The secret place within herself she’d kept locked. Untouched. Untapped. Ever since she last saw him five months ago.

She glanced away, refusing to give him the power to wipe her mind. Her regular patrons had turned around. Damien was off his seat, his silver eyes glowing red and his canines already visible. Two others, Carl and Keegen—twin Viking vampires—stood as well … tense, silent, and sneering, weighing the emotional tension as only vampires could. She flailed her arm when they bared their fangs.

“Jesus. Joseph. And Mary! Guys, sit down,” she scoffed. “This isn’t your concern.”

“What do you want Níðhöggr?” Keegan snapped, staring at Drake. His fangs caught his bottom lip and he grimaced, reaching up and wiping a dribble of blood off his chin.

“Not here to hurt the little lady,” Drake returned. “So no one needs to worry.”

“We’ll be the judge of that drage shadown,” Carl said, his icy arctic eyes narrowed and he hissed a vampire warning.

 Drake only sneered at the Viking brothers. “Lindworm, wyrm, snake. Best you got? For the record it’s Herensuge or Drac. Don’t try to insult me, boys. I’d hate to knock those precious fangs down your Swedish throats by accident.”

Shay curled her thumb and index finger between her lips and blew a shrill whistle. “Geez. All of you. Fold it and hold it. This isn’t some preternatural pissing match.”

Q&A with Susan Arden

If you were to describe your book in only one word, what would it be?

What would you say inspired you to write it?
True Blood and Game of Thrones. I’m besotted by the romance between Khal Drago and Daenerys Targaryen. I cried so hard when he died.

What was the source of inspiration for Shay Barclay? What about the sexy dragon-shifter Drake O’Connor?
I wanted the hero to be “the dragon” and like Khal Drago yet retain the heroine to like Daenerys Targaryen, but I had a leopardess on the loose in my series (Shawn’s sister). Click HERE to see Images I used to draw from.

Have you ever tended bar like Shay does in this book?
The running away part. Yes. I started running away when I was five. Things were a mess at home. And eventually ran away from home when I was sixteen. I lived out on the streets until I turned 18. I was a spiraling, and have done lots…seen lots. Right after turning 18, I got a GED, enrolled in college and went on to get a Master’s in Ed, specializing in special education within the vein of severally emotionally disturbed (SED).

Ever traveled across Europe?
Yes. Several times. I’ve been to Spain. Traveled through the Basque country described in Dragon Heart, and to France.

What is your all time favorite book?
The Little Prince. My father gave it to three times. He was a professor of philosophy at Flagler College.

What made you pick that one above all others?
The story resonates. My favorite line. Voici mon secret. Il est très simple: on ne voit bien qu’avec le cœur. L’essentiel est invisible pour les yeux. Here is my secret. It is very simple: It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.

What made you decide to become an Author?
Neurosurgery complications and the voices/characters in my head needed an outlet.

Would you say becoming an author has changed you? In what way?
I have dyslexia and ADHD, and I lost my direction in life (again). Writing is window out of misery and pain into worlds that are as splendid or as harsh as I’d like to make them.

What would you say was the toughest part?
Sharing what’s written.

What do you have stored for us in the future? What are you working on/planning on next?
Working with another writer and getting their work published. That’s all I can say on that one.

How long did the production part take, from the moment you began working on the manuscript to when you hit “Publish”?
The story was written in a month. Submitted to Crimson as a way to thank them for what they’d done. The book was published within three months after Crimson contracted it.

Fun facts:

If you could wish for any one thing, and it would immediately come true, what would you wish for?
A cure for Ebola.

If you were stranded on an isolated island, what’s the one item you’d absolutely wish to have with you?
Fiji. Yeah, that’s where I’d like to be.

Name your favorite fruit.
Mangos. The juicier the better.

Favorite season?
Fall. My heart sings.

How about favorite time of the day?
5 am. It’s quiet.

Were you a Girl Scout?

Favorite food for breakfast?
Coffee with milk.

What is the latest book you’ve bought and read?
Maybe Not – Colleen Hoover

What was the last book you absolutely fell in love with?
If I Stay – Gale Forman. It was a hard read and I loved it.

Do you recall the first piece of Erotica you ever read?
I honestly don’t remember.

Do you collect things, like stamps, or key chains, or shoes?
Dust. I seem to collect a lot of that.

Favorite color, you know you want to tell us!

Coffee or tea?

Sweet or salty?

Drama or comedy?

Cats or dogs?

Do you have a favorite Book Boyfriend/Girlfriend?
Boyfriend: Max Stella ~ Beautiful Stranger Talk Brit to me!

Do you have a guilty pleasure?

Favorite Swear Word?


Susan Arden has put together a fabulous prize package to give away to one lucky winner! It includes a T-shirt, tote, notebook and pen, which are branded with Dragon Heart AND Smutsonian Graphics! Just in time for Christmas!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About the Author

Blog | GoodReads | Twitter | G+

I’m not into chocolate…I prefer brightly colored candy. Wild flowers over roses. Definitely, I prefer the company of children and animals over politicians and bureaucrats. Was a teacher, now turned into a romance writer, and just got into cover and interior book design which is a whole other fascinating world.


Each Monday, Shurrn’s Indie Flutters will showcase a talented Indie Author…
When she’s not contributing a weekly post here, she can be found at The Smutsonian a blog dedicated to Reviews of Modern Romance & Erotica. 
If you are interested in having your book featured in the Indie Flutters post, please see Shurrn’s Review Request Form.

Thank You & Happy Reading!


11 thoughts on “Indie Flutters: Dragon Heart by Susan Arden – Review, Excerpt, Interview, & Giveaway

    1. Susan Arden

      Hey Braine,
      It’s been a while. Glad you like the sound of this tale. Lots of fun to write a kickass heroine who while pregnant shifts from leopardess to human, as well as how an over-the-top dragon dials down his nature to devour. I believe extremes, polarities give a unique prism and spin. TY!! #prego-shifter-takes-no-crap-PNR.
      Susan Arden recently posted…FREE EROTICA. That’s a HELL YEAH!My Profile


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