Author Override is the place where authors take the reins and take you on a journey into their world. Some may allow you into their private writing dens. Others may take you along with them on research trips or interviews. Whatever the case may be, sit back, relax and enjoy the ride because here you’ll get an in-depth look into an author’s musings.

Today our resident redhead, Suzanne shares an interview she did with Master Sam and Master Cullen of Cherise Sinclair’s Master of the Shadowland series. It seems like these guys are too good to be true. Check out what went down!


*Note: This interview was conducted a few years ago, before Lean On Me was written

Sam grinned as a new woman entered the main room of the Shadowlands and froze. New members invariably stopped about two steps in from the door. What had caught his attention when he first came here? The enticing sounds of pain? Maybe the scent of sweat and leather with an undertone of sex? Or simply the sight of submissives restrained on crosses, on spanking benches, and from chains and ropes. That had been many years ago, and the Shadowlands hadn’t been his first BDSM club.

It was probably the best though.

To his left, a woman being caned by her mistress screamed, her agony and orgasm mingling together in a fine broth. Nice.

 At the door, the new girl worked up her courage and approached the bar where Sam sat. He sipped his water—some of Z’s fancy shit with bubbles—and considered her. Pretty, but younger than he preferred. However, the big blue eyes were gorgeous as was the red hair, long enough to wrap around his hand. Her fair, fair skin would mark up nicely. Tempting. His usual submissives had kept him busy enough that he hadn’t played with anyone new in a while, but they gone to attend a convention.

“Hi there,” the redhead said. Her Britsh accent was a surprise, her forwardness even more so. “Z sent me. I’m looking for Master Sam.”

 “You found him, girl.” He set his drink down and waited, letting the weight of silence flatten her slightly. Her weight shifted as her assurance diminished.

He gave her a long appraisal. She’d gone for the secretary look with a thin white blouse that begged to be ripped off…or shredded. He had a whip he preferred for that…although a knife was often more fun. The tight black skirt wouldn’t cushion a blow at all, and her high heeled sandals had buckles from the toes to above her ankles. The security guard must have liked them or she’d have been barefoot.

“What’s up, Sam?” Cullen leaned an arm on the bartop and surveyed the chit. “You two going to play?”

When the color rolled into her cheeks, Sam chuckled. “She said she was looking for me, but I don’t think she meant to play.” Testing, he wrapped his hand around her upper arm and watched her color deepen. Very, very aware of him. But was she up to his speed? His needs? He closed his fingers more tightly, squeezing her soft flesh, watching her lips part and her eyes dilate as the pain hit her. He could almost smell the need radiating off her. “Then again, we might do some talking.”

Her eyes held a touch of anxiety, and he released her, rubbing the dents from her skin. “Easy, girl. Nothing happens to you without your consent. Now tell us why you’re here.”

He smiled at the fearful, aroused way she watched him.

Cullen gave him an amused glance and took her hand. “Ignore the sadist, love, and tell me what’s bothering you.”

“I’m Suzanne with Under The Covers blog, and I-I’m here to do an interview.”

Hell. That wasn’t what he considered a good beginning to a play session.

Cullen groaned. “Another one? Who did Z single out this time?”

Her gaze turned to Sam. He could imagine her big eyes as she begged, how tears would roll down her round cheeks. But a damn interview? She looked back at Cullen. “If you’re Cullen, then Z said you were supposed to help.”

 “Figures,” Cullen muttered.

“Well.” Suzanne straightened. Having drawn the lines, she obviously felt more in control. “First question. What’s the sexiest part of a woman?”

Cullen blinked.

Sam decided the bloggers must suck down a couple pitchers of margaritas when deciding on interview questions. But this topic had possibilities. “Her brain.”

WHAT KIND OF answer is that? Suzanne froze as the silver-haired Dom leaned forward. His callused hand curled around her jaw in a ruthless grip. When he pinned her with ice blue eyes, she shivered at the dark promise in them.

 “It all starts in the brain, girl,” he said, his rough voice sandpapering over her skin. “If I hauled off and slapped you, that wouldn’t be fun at all, would it?”

“N-no.” He wouldn’t, would he?

He leaned toward her, his hard face taking up her entire field of vision. “But, what if I tell you that I’m going to strip you of your clothes and then strip you of your defenses. That I intend to tie you to a post and…hurt you?”

All the air was gone from the room and what was left had turned the temperature of a sauna. She couldn’t look away from his pale eyes.

 He released her, leaned back against the bar stool, and his lips curved slightly. “The brain is sexy, girl. Once I have your mind, I can do…anything…”

Do it. Do it. Her legs weren’t buckling, and she shakily slid onto a bar stool. Don’t talk to him. Don’t look at him. She turned to Cullen instead, realizing he wore the gold armband indicating he was a Master of the Shadowlands. Like Master Sam was. Interview. This is for work. “What is one essential thing a Dom should have? A must-have item.”

“Control,” said Master Sam at the same time Cullen said, “An imagination.”

“But…” They were deliberately screwing up her interview. “I meant like equipment. Or toys. Or a flogger or something.”

Cullen’s laugh was loud and full-throated; Sam’s chuckle like the grinding of a cement truck. “Now, see, a Dom can have some favorite toys and that’s all he plays with,” Cullen said. “I enjoy a variety, and no matter what I have, whether it’s a toybag full or things I grab from the bar”—he took a clamp off of a potato chip bag—”it’s what I do with them that’s the fun part.” His gaze slowly traveled down her body, and she realized her nipples tingled, almost begging for that horrible looking clamp. Dammit, I should have worn a bra. He gave her a slow smile that was almost as terrifying as Master Sam’s.

 “Well. Okay.” She crossed her arms over her chest. “How about your favorite safeword?”

Master Sam smiled at her. “Ow is always a fine word to hear—but not for a safeword. I prefer whatever a submissive can remember. Sometimes I have her use her name—when all else goes, she might remember that. Might.”

When all else goes? Every word he said was a low threat, and her body craved him, craved whatever he wanted to do to it. And how am I ever going to write this up as an interview? Her readers would run. He was a sadist; oh, he really, really was. Every time she shivered, she saw him drink it in.

Talk to Cullen. He was much safer. “Master Cullen, what’s your favorite toy?”

The man was huge, muscular, powerful, and he gave her a look as compelling as a hard yank. “A woman. Far better than a stuffed bear in bed, much more fun to play with.”

Oh, hell, he wasn’t any better than Master Sam. She looked back at the older Dom—as deadly as Cullen was powerful. “What is it about the lifestyle you find the most appealing. Rewarding?”

Master Sam smiled slowly. He took her hands and opened them, palms up. Her skin heated from the roughness of his fingers. “Rewarding is when a submissive opens her mind and defenses, when she offers her trust. When I can reach down and pick up the reins…” He brushed her palms, curling his fingers around an imaginary rope, and she felt as if he pulled her toward him. “When she trusts me to take what I need—and to give her what she needs. Even if what we both want will make her cry.”

 Cry? The word reverated through her, melting her insides, setting up a pulse of fear. Of need.

As she stared up at him, he fisted the front of her shirt and lifted her to her feet. “Do you want to use Suzanne as your safeword?”

Pick your poison – Cherise’s cocktail recipe
The Mojito—Ernest Hemingway’s favorite drink and perfect for summertime

Ingredients- If you’re going to make a few, do it this way: take 1 cup of sugar and 1 cup of water and boil until the sugar is dissolved. (makes “simple syrup”)
10 fresh mint leaves.
3 tbsp of fresh lime juice (or ½ a lime)
2 tbsp of simple syrup (depends on how sweet you like it)
2 oz of light rum About 1 oz club soda or seltzer

Chill a tall, thin glass. Put in the mint leaves and lime juice and muddle (smash, don’t flake or cut). Add sugar. Crushed ice almost to the top of the glass. Pour the rum over it. Splash in club soda or seltzer. Toss in a slice of lime if you want. Happy summer to you!

Blurb for My Liege of Dark Haven:

Threatened by university cutbacks, Professor Abigail Bern’s only hope is to publish a provocative research paper–soon. Planning to covertly observe behavior in the notorious Dark Haven BDSM club, she takes a receptionist job. When the owner calls upon her to assist in a demonstration, she’s appalled. Then fascinated. Under the unyielding hands of the master known as my Liege, she discovers a need to be more than an observer.

His late wife had been the center of his life, and Xavier Leduc wants no other. But when his new receptionist does her utmost to keep an emotional distance from him, he’s intrigued and digs deeper. She’s adorable. Intriguingly intelligent, beautifully submissive, sweetly vulnerable. He soon realizes her defenses are keeping her on the fringe of her sexuality–and her life. As he draws her into fuller participation, she unconsciously does the same for him. She begins to fill his world.

Ever since the night she met my Liege Xavier, Abby has questioned everything she believes about herself. She’s falling for the stern owner of Dark Haven and thinks he’s beginning to care for her…until the day he learns why she’s in his club.

Non-edited excerpt for My Liege of Dark Haven
Release date: August 28th, 2012 from Loose Id

“Abby, since we’ve not played together before, you tell me if something is getting to be too much,” Master Xavier said.

 It’s already too much. Abby looked over her shoulder at the owner of the club. White dress shirt, black silk vest, black jeans, black boots. Definitely in the tall, dark, and handsome category, only the words seemed insipid compared to the reality. The wide muscular shoulders turned tall into dangerous. His skin held the darkness of Native American ancestry, and the long black braid down his back was a definite statement. Very handsome, with European chiseled features that went well into hard-edged.

And scary. But she couldn’t back out. She doubted the man had a benevolent bone in his body. Quite obviously if she didn’t “assist,” she’d be out the door. She sure hadn’t thought her participant observations would include real participation. A shiver ran through her.

He glanced up, and the sun lines at the corners of his eyes crinkled with amusement. “Easy, Abby. The club safe word is red and if you use it, play stops immediately. Say it loudly, and a dungeon monitor will show up to make sure you’re all right.” Holding her arm firmly, he wrapped what looked like wide packing tape around her right wrist a couple of times, and she realized the material wasn’t sticky.

“Red. Got it.”

 “Abby,” he said. “I daresay you know how to address a Dominant in this setting, especially the one working with you.”

The uninflected reprimand made her flush as if she’d been caught cheating off someone’s test paper. “Yes, my liege.”

He didn’t rant but nodded acceptance.

Despite her relief he hadn’t lost his temper, anxiety thrummed in her ears as he pulled her other arm behind her back and secured both wrists together. She closed her eyes and tried to pretend nothing was happening. She’d never been able to let Nathan put her in handcuffs. Why in the world was she allowing this stranger to restrain her arms?

 But she needed this place for her fieldwork. Needed to keep her job. Publish or perish. If she ever met the academic who’d invented that phrase, she’d shove his papers down his throat until he choked.


She opened her eyes. Xavier stood in front of her, looking down. Why did he have to be so tall? His warm hands massaged her bare shoulders. “Any strain in your joints?”

 “No, sir.”

He studied her silently.

She shifted her weight, trying not to think about her lack of mobility. If she didn’t move, she wouldn’t know–much like closing her eyes during gory movie scenes.

“Pull on the tape, Abby. How does it feel?” Her arms jerked involuntarily, and just like that she knew she was restrained. Couldn’t defend herself. That her body was available to the impassive-faced Master. Alternating waves of heat and cold rushed over her as if she stood in front of a rotating fan. She pulled harder, and panic squeezed her throat.

“Easy, pet.” He cupped her chin with one firm hand. His fingers curled around her arm, creating a warm place on her skin. His movements showed how easily he could touch her…yet the contact was comforting. Settling. “Eyes on me.”

Panting she looked up and into eyes the color of darkness, but the specks of golden-brown made them warm, not cold.

 “Good girl.” He stroked his thumb along her jawline. “You know you can’t escape, but I’m not going to do anything you won’t enjoy. We’re here in a public place, and you have a safe word that will summon every monitor in the dungeon. Now slow your breathing down before you hyperventilate.”

Oops. His gaze never left hers as she pulled in a measured breath and let it out.

“Better. Another.” His grip on her upper arm was unyielding, but not painful. A man’s hand.

Why did his touch seem different from Nathan’s? Why didn’t she get that horrible dread?

“Little fluff, I want you to remember how you’re breathing now. When I tighten a clamp, it will hurt for a few seconds. I want you to inhale through the pain like you did with your fear.”

“Pain? But–“

 “Do you get flu shots?”

 “Yes.” When his eyebrows pulled together, she added a hasty, “My liege.”

 “This is the same level of pain, although people rarely get turned on by vaccinations. Whereas nipple clamps…” A crease appeared and disappeared in his cheek.

She nodded to say she could handle that much pain. But could she handle these disconcerting flares of heat? Her nipples actually tingled as if anticipating the touch of those powerful fingers.

Was this the kind of thing Nathan had wanted to do with her? Guilt pressed on her chest. Considering he had dumped her, she shouldn’t feel as if she were betraying him. But she did. And she’d let a complete stranger restrain her. Alice had fallen down a hole into Wonderland; Abby had fallen into quicksand and was sinking fast. What am I doing here?

Xavier hadn’t moved, was simply watching her. “What’s the matter, Abby?”

 “I don’t know you at all. You’re talking about…”Nipple clamps. “I don’t know you.”

“I see.” His hand was still curved around her upper arm as he moved closer. With his fingers under her chin, he lifted her face and gave her a light kiss. His lips were firm but velvety. Gentle. How could someone with such a merciless face kiss so sweetly?

When he lifted his head, she whispered, “Why did you do that?”

His aftershave was totally masculine with a hint of the exotic, like a pirate who’d visited India. He stroked his thumb along her jawline, his lips only an inch from hers. “Because I can,” he whispered back. Then he smiled. “Because I’m going to be touching you much more intimately in a moment.”

 Heat roared through her at the thought of his hands…elsewhere.

“Think of this as an introduction. I’m Xavier.” He covered her mouth with his, and it wasn’t a gentle, sweet kiss any longer. He took her lips, demanding a response. When she pulled at the restraints and gasped, his tongue swept in. She couldn’t move, couldn’t escape, and…

 He stepped back, grasping her arms to keep her steady. Ravished by only a kiss, she stared at him. Her lips felt swollen, and she ran her tongue over them.

A flicker of heat lit his eyes, followed by amusement. “Are we better acquainted now?”

Her voice came out sounding as if he’d strangled her instead of kissing her. “Yes, my liege.” If he introduced himself like that at a faculty party, the floor would be littered with swooning academics.

“Very good.” With far-too-competent hands, he undid the first hook on her corset. As he worked his way down, his long fingers slid between her full breasts, brushing the insides. Each undone fastening exposed more of her body, and coolness wafted over her damp flesh. When he finished, he set the corset to one side, leaving her bare from the waist up. She bit her lip. Really, this is nothing. In France, beaches were filled with women wearing no tops. Not that she had joined them, but… She took a mental step back. Observe. With a determined breath, she checked out a noisy spanking in the center of the room.

A warm hand cupped her breast.

She jumped, tried to pull away. “What are you doing?” He grasped her arm with his other hand, holding her in place. “Did you think you could get clamps without being touched by the Dom?” Even as he spoke, he stroked her breasts, one then the other. His palm was callused, slightly abrasive. His thumb circled the areola, and her nipple bunched hard enough to create an ache.

She tried to dissociate, to observe the other scene.

“Eyes on me, Abby.” The softness of his voice didn’t negate the command.

 The intensity of his gaze sent a shudder up her spine. He tugged on her nipple, and she inhaled hard at the reverberating sensations–the rush of pleasure at his touch, echoed by another in her groin.

“You have beautiful breasts.”
Cherise Sinclair
Dominant Males, Sizzling Tales Author of the Masters of the Shadowlands series

Stalk Cherise:

Cherise Sinclair is graciously giving away an ebook of the winner’s choice from her backlist!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. Holy Crap! That was HOT!!! I Love Cherise Sinclair’s books, and haven’t read To Command and Collar yet (I need to before this one comes out, I was saving it to have something to look forward to). Great interview!

  2. Holy Crap! That was HOT!!! I Love Cherise Sinclair’s books, and haven’t read To Command and Collar yet (I need to before this one comes out, I was saving it to have something to look forward to). Great interview!

  3. Oh, dear lord! My addiction is growing apace with the number of books Cherise publishes. I haven’t figured out if it is better to get an excerpt or to just wait in anticipation of the next book coming out. If I read a snippet, I just want more! And more, and more!

  4. Great interview! I’m a huge Cherise Sinclair fan. I’m looking forward to Master Xavier’s book but can’t wait for Master Sam’s. I lurve that sexy sadist. Thanks for the excerpt!

  5. Oh, I’m really excited about this excerpt – but I think I’m going to have to come back in the morning to get the most out of it (as it’s well after midnight here!).

    Master Sam – it’s been, what?, more than half a year since To Command and Collar, and I’m still feeling sorry for him! He needed a HEA yesterday!

  6. SOOOOOOO excited….Cherise as always you are AWESOME! Cant wait to read both My Leige and Master Sam……I’m slowly facing my fear of him and he is starting to grow on me!

  7. AWESOME interview, Suz and soooo jealous you got to talk to Master Cullen. I am a huge fan of Cherise’s books and her Masters:) I have all of them, so I am not entering the giveaway. I just wanted to be in the presence of Cullen for a few minutes. 🙂

  8. Thanks everyone for coming by! Thanks to Suzanne for being such a great (and brave) interviewer. 🙂

    And for those of you on the edge of the lifestyle, bear in mind that negotiations would normally proceed a tad slower. LOL

  9. I haven’t read any of Ms Sinclair’s books yet but I’ve heard great things about them. I don’t understand the appeal of pain. Perhaps I should read more about it & see if I can discover why some people do. At least I will be getting quite the education! This was a very thought-provoking excerpt!

  10. I love the Shadowlands series. Master Z is awesome! I have one of the Doms of Darkhaven series on my Kindle. I have been saving it for a rainy day 😉

  11. Thanks so much for the great interview. I love the Shadowlands books, and can’t wait for the next books in it. I am looking forward to learning more about Master Sam (although he does scare me). I am going to have to get the other books of Ms. Sinclair because I do love her writing style.

  12. I’ve heard great things about Cherise’s books but sad to say, I haven’t read any yet. Love the interview and the excerpt!


  13. I love the Masters of Shadowland and Dark Haven!! I am looking forward to the newest Dark Haven and would love to read Master Sam’s story!!

  14. Wow! Talk about commanding a presence! Master Sam and Master Cullen both sound yummy! Congrats to Cherise on the new one, it sounds awesome!! 🙂

  15. AAAAHHHHH. Screaming for joy. I have the Masters of the Shadowlands and the DarkHaven books. I must have this new book My Liege. Even the title sounds sexy.

    My goodness. I hope I win this book. I can’t wait for this one.