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Blog Tour: The High Priestess and Queen of Swords by Katee Robert - Guest Post + Excerpt

Hey guys! Welcome to today's blog stop for The High Priestess and Queen of Swords by Katee Roberts. I do know that this is really late, so do forgive me! Anyway, both books are Sci-Fi Romance and they sure look great! The High Priestess is a novella, and is only published in June 2012. However, it is the first book in the Sanctify series. So I guess its kinda like a prequel to Queen of Swords? As for Queen of Swords, its a full-length novel. It's the 2nd book and is already published!

The High Priestess by Katee Robert

Marianna Zain is in trouble. The handsome stranger she just kissed? He’s a member of the most terrifying hate-group in the universe. Even after he takes her captive, Marianna can’t shake her initial instincts that he’s a man of worth…and her only chance at escaping death.

One of Sanctify’s most decorated lieutenants, Gerald Leoni thought he had everything figured out. But then he crosses paths with a Diviner, the most despised of the alien races, and is honor-bound to bring her in. One night with Marianna makes him question everything he knows.

As the day of her scheduled execution draws near, Marianna forms a plan. She’s going to seduce Gerald—a task that would be simpler if she weren’t being seduced as well. But Sanctify doesn’t take kindly to their people cavorting with aliens, and instead of finding a savior, Marianna may be dragging Gerald to his death alongside her…

Queen of Swords by Katee Robert

When the cards tell Ophelia Leoni she’s supposed to marry the Prince of Hansarda, the gunrunner grits her teeth and boards the starship that comes for her. It doesn’t matter if the ship’s commander is the gorgeous stranger she just spent a wild, drunken night with. As a Diviner, she’s painfully aware the cards don’t lie. Ever.

Boone O’Keirna knows Ophelia is trouble the second he sees the way she moves. Not about to let the deadly little hellcat marry his sadistic half-brother, Boone pretends to be the Prince’s emissary and kidnaps Ophelia. Too bad they can’t be in the same room without him wanting to throw her out an airlock–or into bed.

Even as they fight each other–and their explosive attraction–Ophelia and Boone sense something is wrong. Too much is going their way. Soon, they realize while the cards may never lie, the truth is sometimes hidden between them…and the future king of Hansarda is not one to take defeat lying down.

Katee Robert

Katee Robert learned to tell stories at her grandpa’s knee. Her favorites then were the rather epic adventures of The Three Bears, but at age twelve she discovered romance novels and never looked back. Now living in Eastern Washington, she spends her time—in between ogling men’s goodies and planning for the inevitable zombie apocalypse—writing speculative romance novels.

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Not sure if you should get Queen of Swords? Why not take a look at Chapter 1 here?

Ophelia couldn’t find her underwear.
They had to have been around there somewhere. She’d been wearing them last night, after all, but she was hard pressed to find that small piece of silk amongst the other clothing scattered about the room.
She stood up, hands on her hips, and scowled. Against her better judgment, her gaze slid to the man taking up more than his fair share of the bed. He was delicious. Absolutely delicious. Even relaxed in sleep, his muscles stood out beneath tanned skin marred by scars. The marks crisscrossed up his back and over his shoulders, perfect, shiny lines made by some kind of blade, or maybe giant claws. They were enough to make her reconsider her morning-after policy and crawl back into bed with him.
Her link beeped again, setting her teeth on edge. The damn thing was what woke her in the first place, and now she couldn’t even find it. Ophelia moved around the room, picking up her clothes. Yeah, she should definitely crawl back into bed with the hot man. She’d do damn near anything to escape the memories of Sanctify’s white hull looming before her ship, her crew’s frightened faces…
Nope. Not thinking about it.
And still no underwear.
Oh well. She shimmied into her pants and pulled on her shiny silver tank top. In the hazy light of morning, she felt rumpled and twitchy. Her link beeped again, giving her a better idea of where it was—under the bed. Growling uncomplimentary things, she sank to her stomach and peered into the shadows. Sure enough, the link’s small screen was lit up against the back wall. Ophelia grabbed it and headed into the bathroom, locking the door for good measure, and brought up her messages.
Her stomach clenched when her mother’s voice came online. “Good morning, daughter. I trust you slept well last night.”
It was like she knew what Ophelia had been doing. Considering she was a second-level Diviner—known as a Tyche by their species—it was likely she did. Ophelia shoved the hair out of her eyes, refusing to feel guilty. Or at least making a good effort at it. She’d lost her whole damn crew, for the Lady’s sake. A failure like that deserved a little drinking.
Her mother continued on, looking remarkably put together despite the fact the call had been placed before Keiluna’s twin suns breached the horizon. But then, Mama always looked put together. It was downright unnatural. “In any case, your father and I need to speak with you immediately. We will see you for breakfast.”
Corpse’s fingers traced up Ophelia’s spine and down her arms, raising goose bumps in their wake. Damn. Her mother might support Azure Enterprises, might agree with their mission, but she also never involved herself with the dirty details, let alone something so small as a run.
Something was up, something to do with the Lady’s business. That’s the only reason Mama would be the one making this call.
Double damn.
She cast a quick look around the bathroom and frowned at the flash of red in the hot tub. Crossing the black-tiled floor, she peered in. Sure enough, her underwear floated along the surface. Ophelia grimaced as she hooked them with a single finger and raised the dripping cloth. The dripping ripped cloth. All evidence pointed to her having the time of her life last night.
Too bad she didn’t remember it.
She frowned, thinking hard, but last night was one big blank. Which had been the plan, of course. It had started at her favorite pub, The Hammer, and she vaguely remembered deciding to go dancing after midnight, but then everything faded into a pleasant grayness. She was going to have to make sure she tipped Lacy next time she was in—those drinks had been strong enough to make even her wince and Ophelia was all about more bang for her credits. Still…pretty soon she would have to tone it down on the whole blacking-out thing. Too much could go wrong, from her killing someone to getting kidnapped.
Dropping the underwear on the floor—something to remember her by—she walked out of the bathroom. After pulling on her boots, she took one last look around the room. Whatever else happened, she must have had a universe-shattering time. The bed covers were tangled on the floor, and the entire bed skewed sideways where the springs had broken in. And there were the telltale remains of spray-on condoms scattered about. Thank the Lady, because the last thing she needed right now was a baby. She couldn’t even take care of her own crew.
The man rolled over and she tensed, her gaze flying to his face. When he didn’t open his eyes, she breathed a little sigh of relief. He really was delicious. Those cheekbones were sharp enough to cut and that jaw certainly wasn’t weak. Still…he wasn’t pretty by any means. Such a waste when paired with a body like that.
She found her bag near the door and a quick check told her nothing was missing, so she walked out the door without looking back. It was bad luck, after all.
The prominence of red and black in the decor was enough to indicate where she was. Death’s Door. It wasn’t the safest area during the best of times and, since the riots, it was damn near fatal for someone like her. What in the hells had possessed her to come to this part of town last night? Especially with the patrols Sanctify had scouting the streets, ready to scoop up anyone who showed signs of being less than human. Gods knew they’d jump at the chance to nab one of their dreaded Diviner enemies. What happened to those unfortunate souls didn’t bear thinking about, especially knowing her crewmembers had suffered the same fate.
To save her.
Surely it wasn’t too early to start drinking?
She shook off the memories of those final moments on the Dutchman, before Akito and Kana drugged her and tossed her into an escape pod. She’d need to keep her head straight if she planned to make it out of here. Death’s Door wasn’t a place for nonhumans, no matter the flavor. Ophelia couldn’t begin to imagine how she got through the door in the first place. Sure, she looked human, but only until people saw her eyes. Even with the implants and upgrades available to anyone with enough cash, no one besides Diviners had eyes this shade of blue-violet.
Right now the only thing that mattered was getting back to her parents’ house. Mama’s call had her on edge, her mind full of questions, her instincts screaming warnings. Bypassing the elevators—too easy to get penned in—she took the stairs down, thankful no one else was up and around at this ungodly hour. As soon as she was outside, the band around her chest loosened a bit.
Above her, the sky stretched wide, a color somewhere between yellow and orange that would change several months from now when the winter storms hit. Ophelia slipped on a pair of red-tinted glasses, glaring at the flickering posters depicting the ancient High Priest of Ba’al. Attached to the walls of nearly every building on the street, they were larger than life, each taller than her nearly two meters, and their damn tech was so good the bastard actually moved. He waved an age-spotted hand and smiled, the words “Purity Will Protect You” flashing below his face. It made her sick knowing there were those who actually believed shit like that.
Unable to stand the sight any longer, she turned her attention to the thin crowd filtering through the streets. The only people out were dressed in muted colors and moved quickly about their business, hoods pulled up to conceal their features. As Ophelia watched, a small group of dirty teenagers skirted the edges of the buildings, their shifty eyes suggesting they were looking for their next score.
They were all human.
Shifting her bag higher on her shoulder, she started walking, keeping her eyes to the ground and her pace up. As long as no one looked too closely, she could pass for human. But the trick was not to draw attention to herself. Even as the thought crossed her mind, she heard militant steps that could only mean one thing. A Sanctify patrol, and one closing fast.
As if her morning could get any worse.
Ophelia kept her stride even, acting as if she had every right to be there, hoping to the Lady they wouldn’t look too closely at her. Those bastards jumped at any excuse for a public bonfire, and nabbing a Diviner would be a huge coup.They passed her at a fast clip, obviously having somewhere to be. The closest one, a tiny man with tattoos depicting Ba’al, cast a searching look her way but didn’t pause.
She waited until they rounded the corner before breathing out a prayer of thanks to the Lady. That had been close. Too close. Keiluna used to be the perfect place for Azure Enterprise’s base, lots of people coming and going, a population diverse enough for anyone to blend in. But then Sanctify had turned its bloody eye their way and taken over.
Oh, officially it was still owned by the Delegate of Quadrant Four, but those monsters had slipped in, whispering poison until the perfect opportunity arose. This time it came in the form of an “attack” on a human child by one of the Bolkerians. If anyone had stopped for half a second to think, they would have realized the alien meant the little one no harm, that the boy just got underfoot and the Bolkerian didn’t move fast enough to avoid him. It was a terrible, terrible accident that he’d been impaled, but it had been enough to spark a fire of hate directed at anyone different.
The riots had gone on for days, a bonfire set up in damn near every intersection, until the alien population was decimated.
And now Sanctify held the reins, ruling a people suddenly fearful of anything different.
Though her thoughts were consumed with darkness, the streets around her had begun to take on a more cared-after look, the busted windows replaced by metal bars and eventually by higher-end materials—the homes of people with enough credits to replace what was lost in the fires and violence. The faded paint, streaked with soot, changed as well, evolving into cheery blues, greens, and yellows. There were even carefully tended flowers blooming, the pretty purple ones so common on this planet, bunches of heart-shaped petals so full, they trailed over the window ledges to hang above the street. Their subtle scent teased her, as if this dash of beautiful could cover up the ugliness lurking within.
After a quick look around to make sure no one was paying attention, Ophelia jogged up the three stairs leading to a yellow house with a muted blue door. She’d been trying to convince her parents to move somewhere more secure since even before the riots, but Mama liked to be accessible to her clients and Papa claimed the best place to hide was in plain sight, that no one would expect the leader of Azure Enterprises to be hiding on a planet controlled by their enemy. Ophelia thought it was bullshit, but once Papa got an idea in his head, there was no moving him. Mama was supposed to be the calm and rational one, but she wasn’t much better.
So Ophelia was forced to content herself with ensuring they had multiple escape routes and hideaways in case things went south.
The muzzle of a gun met her as soon as she entered the door.
She froze, a small smile tugging her lips. “Papa, put that antique away. It’s only me.”
Her father lowered his gun and Ophelia rolled her eyes. The damn thing was so old it probably didn’t even work. Then again, this was her father she was talking about. He wouldn’t haul around a useless weapon.
“Your mother is in the kitchen.”
An icy chill of foreboding snaked its way through her. “What’s going on, Papa?”
He shot her a look and stalked down the stairs. The fact he was cranky but not battening down the hatches should have been comforting. Instead, her anxiety skyrocketed. This was definitely about the Lady’s business, and she knew all too well how nasty things could get when someone didn’t heed the Lady’s warnings. It shouldn’t be so terrifying, since readings were an integral part of her world, but Ophelia couldn’t shake the feeling her life was poised on the precipice, readying to fall.
Lady, but she hoped not.

Boone woke the moment the Diviner got out of bed. He listened to her mutter and curse as she moved around the room before finally retreating into the bathroom.
Last night had been a mistake. He was only supposed to scope her out, see what was so special about some woman from Keiluna that made Kristian send spies to watch her.
She’d looked so untouchable sitting there with an entire bottle of the clear alcohol they brewed on-planet, wearing a tiny top revealing more than it covered and black pants looking painted on. But it wasn’t her body that held his attention—there were plenty of beautiful women flaunting themselves in the bar—it was the way she moved when she went for her second bottle. The loose way she walked, as if she were ready to spring into violence at any moment. It was a radical opposite from the pretties Kristian had carted back to Hansarda to populate his harem.
Really, she was more Boone’s type than his half brother’s. Her obvious battle training paired with the sweeping black hair and delicate features were quite the package.
Even with those damned violet eyes.
But the part that drew him in the most was the vulnerability on her face when she thought no one was looking. Her shoulders slumped, and her fingers framed the bottle in front of her as if it were the most precious thing in the universe.
He’d had to talk to her, to see if her personality held up the physical promise. Surely she was as empty-headed as the other women Kristian cultivated, a pretty face who could barely hold a conversation.
Boone really should have known better.
He was in trouble as soon as he heard her throaty sex-vid-star-would-kill-for voice. It didn’t help that she’d been telling some poseur to shove off before she jammed his balls down his throat. The combination of strength and weakness was an intoxicating one he had no hope of resisting.
The bathroom door swished open, jerking him back to the present. He listened to her breath hiss out as she sat across from the bed.
Boone contemplated trying for another round. He could still taste her on his lips, and it was driving him crazy. They’d been together more times last night than he could count and still he craved the feel of her skin against him. But last night was a mistake, and not one he could afford to repeat. Maybe if he kept thinking that, he’d start to believe it. Besides, she’d hate him soon enough. All of Kristian’s floozies did. Just because she seemed different from the countless others didn’t indicate a different outcome.
As soon as she left the room, he rolled back over and stretched. He was tired and sore and felt fantastically used. The woman really was something.
His wrist unit beeped, and Boone sighed. Couldn’t Jenny give him a few minutes to enjoy the afterglow? He opened the call, leaving the screen blank. His little sister didn’t need to see where he was and start asking questions. “What?”
“Now, now, is that any way to speak to your favorite sister?”
“You’re my only sister.”
Jenny laughed. “Technicalities.” Even without the screen on, he knew her gray eyes, so similar to his own, were dancing with mischief. Which meant trouble for anyone in her sights.
Boone flopped back on the bed and propped his head on his free arm, the movement pulling at old wounds. He rolled his neck, fighting against the tide of memories threatening to drown him. Kristian coaxing him down to the dungeon to hide from the old man. The chains digging into his wrists. The knife, gods, that damned knife…
“You’re not even paying attention to me!”
He could have kissed his sister for pulling him free of the past, even as Boone hoped to the gods he wasn’t going to have to clean up another of her messes. “What do you want, Jenny?”
“What’s she like?” She was only snooping. Thank the gods for small favors.
Boone glared at his wrist unit, but it wouldn’t have intimidated her into silence, even if she could see him. Jenny wasn’t afraid of anything. “You are not calling to ask about Kristian’s new whore.” To call her that felt like a betrayal, but he slapped down the feeling. She may have been amazing last night, but if she became a member of the prince’s harem, she was an enemy, plain and simple.
“Bo-oo-ne.” Jenny stretched his name into three syllables. “Stop playing with my emotions and tell me what she’s like. Is she vapid? Lazy? A royal bitch like the last one? Come on, I’m dying here.”
Jenny was silent for what felt like an eternity. A new record. “No? That’s interesting.”
“Yeah.” He pictured those violet eyes gone hazy with passion. “She’s not at all like we expected.”
“Can we use her?”
That was the question. Judging from last night alone, the Diviner wasn’t a woman someone used lightly. Hells, she’d probably fillet anyone who tried. “I don’t know.”
“You sound weird. What happened?”
Of course Jenny would pick up on his distraction. “Nothing. We’ll talk later.” He reached over and ended the call. Almost immediately, the unit rang again. Boone clicked it on. “Damn it, Jenny—”
“Hello, little brother.”
He froze, his gaze glued to the screen showing the man who had been his enemy for nearly ten years, ever since he’d chained Boone in the dungeon and tried to cut the skin from his back.
Dread curled in his gut. “Kristian.”

And now, let's welcome Katee to the blog to talk about her love for writing and how she somehow manages it amidst the

On the Art of Juggling Knives

Okay, so I don’t actually juggle knives. If you know anything about me, you know what a tragedy THAT would be (clumsy doesn’t even begin to cover it). What I’m talking about is the juggling act people do on a daily basis. That specialized tightrope we all walk in an effort to balance what we need to do with what we want to do.

Now, this is obviously different for everyone. For me, the knives are my day job, my kids, writing, and those other misc. things that need to get done (we shall never speak of the laundry monster hiding in my room).

I work full time at my day job. I’m raising two kids. It would be really, really easy to let writing slip through the cracks.

Some days I even wish that were an option (lists are the only things that keep me from losing my mind—no joke).

Recently I had a friend ask me why I write. He couldn’t understand why I would spend so much time and effort invested in something that, at this point, is bringing in no money.

It’s like this: I don’t have a choice on whether or not I write. It’s my passion, that thing that I need to do—for me. Everyone has something they can’t live without—that thing that, when missing, you become twitchy and snarly and your skin feels too tight. Okay, maybe that’s just me. But you get the idea.

So, even if I never make super sweet mad cash on writing and no one ever reads my books, I’ll keep doing it. Because it’s something I love—and finding those things in life are far too rare to let them slip past you.

So yep, that's about it for today! Go here to check out the other tour stops! You'll find loads of awesome stuff on the other tour sites too! :D


Its great to meet Katee and good luck with Queen of Swords. Victoria, are you participating in the A to Z Challenge? You can still participate with the letter B tomorrow. Have a great weekend!


Quite the post. Intriguing stories.


Hi there!
Was looking for your A-Z post, but I'm glad I found this one. The blog tour looks might interesting and Katee's novel looks like something I might like.


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