Welcome to The Hungry {Romance} Writer’s Iron Rack’s Movie Night! And we’re starting with a Hot Crab Dip Appetizer.

The men in my Deadly Forces series are all ex-Green Berets who now manage Iron Rack’s, a run-down, (cheesy) pirate-themed gym in a not-so-nice area of Savannah, GA. They’re not running the gym because they want to. They’re doing what’s necessary to survive. They also have no money, little family, and are being hunted by two different villains who’d like to see them dead or at least unable to fight back.

But these men, despite the fact that they have deadly enemies and must deal with the frustrating day-to-day running of the gym, still like to have fun. They were all part of the same unit so they’ve been friends forever, and Nate (the hero of book 2 ONE DARK WISH) is their Executive Officer. As the XO, one of Nate’s jobs is to make sure they stay together as a unit–not just in the gym but in the real word. One of the ways Nate keeps the men happy is with Operation Forced Fun. Otherwise known as Iron Rack’s Movie Night.

Since Iron Rack’s still smells like feet (despite their daily attempts at cleaning), they have their movie night at the mansion of another man in the series: Calum Prioleau. Calum, one of the richest people in the city, has a huge house with an in-home theater. He also has a cook and housekeeping staff. That makes throwing a party easy.

This week we’re starting off with Mrs. Thomas’s Hot Crab Dip Appetizer. (Mrs. Thomas was the wife on an army officer while my husband was at West Point and she used to feed many, many teenaged cadets.)

Now it’s time for Iron Rack’s Movie Night with the men of the Deadly Force Series. 🙂

Nate Walker – “Welcome to Iron Rack’s Movie Night. I’d like to tell you that everyone here is excited, but. . . they’re not. In fact, our boss Kells Torridan has just had to order the men to shower, change and get their bums to Calum’s house for “forced fun.” They have ten minutes to hit the showers or else they’re stuck cleaning the locker rooms. Again.

The men grumble until I remind them that there will be free food (including a Hot Crab Dip Appetizer) and beer and a scary movie. And they won’t have to clean up afterwards. (We do a lot of cleaning here at the gym and everyone is tired of smiling like lemon-scented bleach!)

Half an hour later, we’re all clean and dressed and hanging out on Calum’s patio. Zack is tapping the keg and we’re eating hot crab dip and other appetizers–the homemade kind, not the frozen kind!. Music (Muse’s Supermassive Black Hole) is playing on a speaker and I can tell from the laughter and jokes that everyone is beginning to relax.

And that makes me happy. I haven’t heard my men laugh for a long time and I’m thinking that this movie-night idea of mine was a good one. 🙂

Mrs. Thomas’ Hot Crab Dip

Course Appetizer
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings 12
Calories 125 kcal


  • 2 8-ounce cream cheese packages softened
  • 2 Tablespoons half & half
  • 4 Tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 Tablespoons dried minced onion reconstituted in water
  • 2 dashes Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 2 6-ounce cans crabmeat drained, rinsed, and cleaned of shell bits
  • Paprika for garnish


  1. Heat the oven to 350℉. Reconstitute the dried minced onion in water until you have 2 Tablespoons of softened onions.

  2. In a medium-sized bowl, combine softened cream cheese and half & half. Add the mayonnaise until blended.

  3. Stir in the onion, Worcestershire sauce, garlic salt, lemon juice, seasoned salt, and crabmeat.

  4. Mix well sandpit into an 8" pyrex casserole dish. Sprinkle paprika on top. Bake in the oven for about 30 minutes, until bubbly and lightly browned on top. Serve immediately with crackers or pita chips.

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