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Review ~ Falling Down

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Title: Falling Down

Author: Eli Easton

Release: November 9 2016

Publisher: Pinkerton Road LLC

Length: 252 pages

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Amazon US | Amazon UK

 

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Josh finds himself homeless at eighteen, but he has a plan. He’ll head north on the bus to New England and spend October there for his mother’s sake. She always talked about going to see the fall leaves someday. And when the leaves were done and the harsh winter came, Josh would find a place to curl up and let go. It would be a relief to finally stop fighting.

Mark spent his life trying to live up to the tough swagger of his older brothers until he pushed himself so far against his nature that he cracked. Now an ex-Marine, he rents a little cabin in the White Mountains of New Hampshire where he can lick his wounds and figure out what to do with the rest of his life. One thing was clear: Mark was nobody’s hero.

Fate intervenes when Josh sets up camp under a covered bridge near Mark’s cabin. Mark recognizes the dead look in the young stranger’s eyes, and he feels compelled to do something about it. When Mark offers Josh a job, he never expected that he’d be the one to fall.

The snow is coming soon. Can Mark convince Josh that the two of them can build a life together before the flurries fall?

 

Eli Easton’s Desktop Post  with images of places and celebrities that helped inspire this story.

 ~O~

Reviews and an Excerpt from Chapter One

 

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stars-five

I always enjoy Eli Easton’s writing and this story was no exception. From the start, my heart went out to Josh and his sorry plight. For one so young to see no point in living brought tears to my eyes and did so throughout the story. This wish to end it all had me wondering will he or won’t he try even after he met the lovely Mark. I kept saying to myself, Eli wouldn’t have such a tragic ending. Even so, I worried what effect such an attempt would have on Mark, whose own life had been tragic in many ways.

The setting was wonderfully painted in words, both the beautiful fall leaves in New Hampshire and the snow-filled landscape towards the end of the story. I could picture the scenes and the emotions they stirred within Josh.

Josh and Mark’s blossoming friendship progressed at a delightful pace—perfect for them and their situation—and when they finally express their desire for each other, the days afterward are filled with affectionate and steamy love-making.

And all through the happy times they share, I was anticipating the snow with a sense of dread and what it would mean for Josh.

No matter what else happened from here on out, no matter if he stayed with Mark or had to leave. No matter if Josh lived till he was ninety or found his peace in the snow, he would love Mark ’til the end. He was suddenly so grateful to have experienced that.”

The final chapters of the story had me on the edge of my seat for what seemed to be a long time. I was willing for things to turn out well for them. And thank goodness they have their happy ending.

This is such a beautifully written story—definitely one of my favourites of the year. I loved the characters and everything about the story.

 

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Having been, at various times, and under different names, a minister’s daughter, a computer programmer, the author of metaphysical thrillers, an organic farmer and a profound sleeper, Eli is happily embarking on yet another incarnation as a m/m romance author.

As an avid reader of such, she is tinkled pink when an author manages to combine literary merit, vast stores of humor, melting hotness and eye-dabbing sweetness into one story. She promises to strive to achieve most of that most of the time. She currently lives on a farm in Pennsylvania with her husband, three bulldogs, three cows and six chickens. All of them (except for the husband) are female, hence explaining the naked men that have taken up residence in her latest writing.

Eli currently publishes with Dreamspinner Press and has a few self-pubbed titles as well.

She also publishes thrillers under Jane Jensen.

 

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WebsiteEmailTwitter | Facebook | Tumblr

 

 

New Release from Eli Easton

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Title: Falling Down

Author: Eli Easton

Release: November 9 2016

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Amazon US | Amazon UK

 

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Josh finds himself homeless at eighteen, but he has a plan. He’ll head north on the bus to New England and spend October there for his mother’s sake. She always talked about going to see the fall leaves someday. And when the leaves were done and the harsh winter came, Josh would find a place to curl up and let go. It would be a relief to finally stop fighting.

Mark spent his life trying to live up to the tough swagger of his older brothers until he pushed himself so far against his nature that he cracked. Now an ex-Marine, he rents a little cabin in the White Mountains of New Hampshire where he can lick his wounds and figure out what to do with the rest of his life. One thing was clear: Mark was nobody’s hero.

Fate intervenes when Josh sets up camp under a covered bridge near Mark’s cabin. Mark recognizes the dead look in the young stranger’s eyes, and he feels compelled to do something about it. When Mark offers Josh a job, he never expected that he’d be the one to fall.

The snow is coming soon. Can Mark convince Josh that the two of them can build a life together before the flurries fall?

 

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Having been, at various times, and under different names, a minister’s daughter, a computer programmer, the author of metaphysical thrillers, an organic farmer and a profound sleeper, Eli is happily embarking on yet another incarnation as a m/m romance author.

As an avid reader of such, she is tinkled pink when an author manages to combine literary merit, vast stores of humor, melting hotness and eye-dabbing sweetness into one story. She promises to strive to achieve most of that most of the time. She currently lives on a farm in Pennsylvania with her husband, three bulldogs, three cows and six chickens. All of them (except for the husband) are female, hence explaining the naked men that have taken up residence in her latest writing.

Eli currently publishes with Dreamspinner Press and has a few self-pubbed titles as well.

She also publishes thrillers under Jane Jensen.

 

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WebsiteEmailTwitter | Facebook | Tumblr

 

 

SHIMMER MM UK Event for Authors and Readers

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UK AUTHOR BOOK SIGNING EVENT

AT

ASTON VILLA FOOTBALL CLUB

IN BIRMINGHAM

ON

1st JULY 2017

 

Organised by

Books Laid Bare Boys and UK Gay Romance

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 Register and sign up here.

Things that go bump in the night… Guest Post by L.M. Somerton

A big thank you to Lily for giving me spooky space on her blog today to talk about my ghost story, The Portrait.

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Things that go bump in the night…

I recently read an article by Susan Hill, author of The Woman in Black, about what makes a good ghost story. It made me wonder if the same principles would apply to an erotic ghost story.  How do you create the atmosphere needed when the core of the tale is an MM romance?

It’s one thing to sit around a campfire spinning spooky yarns and controlling your audience with the drama of the moment. Unfortunately it’s not possible to issue atmosphere instructions in the preamble to the book:

  1.  Do not read unless you are situated in an appropriately spooky setting. E.g. graveyard, abandoned asylum, haunted house.
  2. Weather must be atmospheric – fog, heavy rain, thunder and lightening are all acceptable.
  3. Watch a really good horror film to get yourself in the right state of mind i.e. ready to jump out of your skin at the least provocation.
  4. Switch off all lights and read by candlelight.

I have to confess that when I wrote The Portrait and its sequel Black Dog I wasn’t consciously considering which elements would work when it came shivers of fear. I was more worried about shivers of desire between the two main characters. In either case there is a fine line between giving your readers a thrill and sending them into fits of laughter. How do you avoid the traps and pitfalls of stereotypes but still give your readers what they need to really feel the atmosphere you are trying to create? In this day and age we are exposed to every imaginable take on the supernatural. Films and computer games bring our worst fears to life at the touch of a button. Is it even possible to create that kind of atmosphere any more or are readers immune to anything that isn’t in 3D?

I think the same thing that makes a story erotic can make it scary. Imagination. It’s the author’s job to put the pieces in place, to lay the foundations for the reader to then build their own picture – to really see, hear and feel what the characters do.

By happy accident, many of the ‘required elements’ of a ghost story snuck their way into The Portrait, so all those 18th century gothic novels I’ve read must have been lurking in my sub-conscious. Hints of a spectral presence, unexplained noises and shadows, an old house where the memories of past horrors linger – they are all there, aided by the natural atmosphere provided by the wonderfully gloomy British weather.

It only takes the smallest hints and suggestions to capture an intelligent reader’s imagination and I think that works so much better than launching into a full-blown terror-ride from the first line. Shakespeare put it well in the Scottish play:

By the pricking of my thumbs,
Something wicked this way comes.

My characters, Garrick and Tristan, know that something evil objects to them being together. Finding out why and working out what to do about it is intertwined with the story of their developing relationship. I wanted my characters to tingle in all the right places; the fear and anticipation of what might happen adds something unpredictable to their romance and turns the heat up just a little bit higher!

So if you like your erotica with a hint of the supernatural, I think you’ll enjoy The Portrait – here’s the blurb to tell you a bit more:

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And a short excerpt to tempt you:

Garrick was bent over a large drawing board, skimming over creamy paper with a soft-leaded pencil. His strokes were confident and he was utterly focused on what he was doing. Suddenly he looked up, his breath steaming in the unnaturally cold air. He cringed and swiped at his neck, rubbing away the sensation of clammy fingers exploring his skin.

“Leave me alone.” His voice was tight with a tension that was mirrored in the set of his jaw. After just a few seconds, the temperature reverted to its normal level and Garrick relaxed with a sigh.

He sat back and took a critical look at the drawing in front of him. A perfect likeness of Tristan stared back and Garrick licked his lips. The image captured the expression that appeared on Tristan’s face every time Garrick looked at him—a cross between fear and desire. A calculating smile curled Garrick’s lips as he pinned the picture to the wall. “You’re mine, Tristan Lindsay. You just don’t know it yet.”

 

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Amazon US |  Amazon UK | Pride Publishing

 

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Amazon US  | Amazon UK |Pride Publishing

 

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Lucinda lives in a small village in the English countryside, surrounded by rolling hills, cows and sheep. She started writing to fill time between jobs and is now firmly and unashamedly addicted.

She loves the English weather, especially the rain, and adores a thunderstorm. She loves good food, warm company and a crackling fire. She’s fascinated by the psychology of relationships, especially between men, and her stories contain some subtle (and some not so subtle) leanings towards BDSM.

LM is winner of the National Leather Association’s Pauline Reage Award for best novel and the 2016 Golden Flogger Award for best BDSM novel in the LGBT category. She has received Honorable Mentions in the Rainbow Awards and won the Action and Adventure category of Divine Magazine’s Book Awards in 2015.

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You can track her down online here:

Pride Publishing  | Website BlogFacebookTwitterPinterestAmazon Author Page

 

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Review ~ Once in a Snowstorm (Nortown #1)

 

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Author: Ofelia Gränd

Title: Once in a Snowstorm

Language: English

Published: 8th December, 2015

Publisher: Beaten Track Publishing

Length: 28,860 words (102 pages) approx.

Category: Fiction

Genre: LGBT, Contemporary Romance, Erotic, Adult, Holidays and Celebrations

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Daring a snowstorm might not be the smartest thing Aiden has ever done, but he can’t stand being in his flat a moment longer. With only three days to Christmas, he doesn’t want to be alone. He wants a place to belong, wants people around him who won’t look down on him. He might not find all that at his mother’s place, but at least it’s better than being alone in the city. If he can make it there, that is.

Tristan is looking forward to a quiet night in front of the TV, but instead, he has to save an idiot in designer clothes from freezing to death in his forest. Tristan tries not to notice the man’s good looks, just like he has tried not to notice any man’s good looks for the last seven years. He knows where relationships go and is far better off living alone, with his dog, in his cabin.

Aiden is driving Tristan mad with his bratty comments and irresponsible ways, and Aiden is going crazy from Tristan’s judgmental attitude. Luckily, in a few days, the weather will clear up, and the two men won’t have to be together any longer. But will a few steamy nights with the grumpy lumberjack change Aiden’s mind about wanting to leave? And will Tristan still want to go back to his peaceful, predictable life without fear of getting his heart broken?

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To appreciate this story you have to accept that many overused tropes and cliches have been deliberately included and thus it’s not meant to be taken seriously. You’ll find many favourites here, including two guys snowed in over Christmas, opposites attract, enemies to lovers, insta-love, the female best friend/confidante. Even the main character names were chosen because an author had blogged about not wanting to see certain frequently used names in an m/m romance again.

Tristan is love-wary and a grumpy lumberjack who wants to be alone in his cabin in the woods. He doesn’t do any tree felling which was surprising as I would have expected people in the town to need Christmas trees at this time of year. He’s not happy about having to rescue the designer-clothed twink and reluctantly agrees to put him up for a night or two until the snow clears.

Aiden comes across as an overly sensitive drama queen. He’d lost his job in the city and was on his way to visit his mother because he was to be evicted from his home. Sadly she doesn’t appear to want him either. Aiden doesn’t do himself any favours.  He takes offence to nearly everything Tristan says to him.  Miscommunication reigns. The two guys, who are physically attracted to each other at least, are at each other’s throats for what seems like the first half of the story. Aiden makes snarky comments and issues nitpicking demands that aggravates the situation. Unfortunately, miscommunication takes up quite a large proportion of the story. Something I don’t particularly like to read, but accepted it as part of the intention of the story.

There’s physical attraction that both men try to avoid. I’m not sure why they fell in love, but when the sudden make-out scene occurs with no real buildup, we have the insta-love trope.

From here on, the romance blossoms and it’s sweet for a time. However, we have some more miscommunication and it looks like it’s the end for these newbie lovers. Don’t worry, it all ends well.

So overall, this is an enjoyable romp with a happy ending for our two guys who turned out to be nice people after all.

If you want a fun read you might enjoy this nicely written snowed-in tale. On the other hand, you might just roll your eyes at their antics.

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Beaten Track ShopAmazon US | Amazon UK

 ~O~

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A Gay Fiction Writer—some stories have a sprinkle of romance, some a dash of horror, some a pinch of paranormal, and some are a mix of it all.

Ofelia Gränd is Swedish, which often shines through in her stories. She likes to write about everyday people ending up in not-so-everyday situations, and hopefully also getting out of them. She writes contemporary and paranormal, and dreams about one day writing a post-apocalyptic story—if that ever happens we’ll see.

Ofelia Gränd lives on the southern west coast of Sweden with her husband and their three children. At the moment she’s on parental leave. She could give up her glamorous life as a stay-at-home mom, and go back to her job as a teacher if she wanted to. But why not take advantage of the situation when she’s living in a parental leave utopia?

Her books are written for readers who want to take a break from their everyday life for an hour or two.

When Ofelia manages to tear herself from the screen and sneak away from husband and children, she likes to take walks in the woods. She’s recently discovered the miracle of podcasts and spends her strolls listening to wise people talk

 

 Check out Ofelia’s Blog

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RAINBOW SNIPPETS ~ October 15th

RAINBOW SNIPPETS

 

This week’s Rainbow Snippet is taken from my taboo story

Let Your Heart Decide

There’s a short verse at the beginning of each chapter which tells part of Samuel and Thomas’s story.

The entire poem is collated at the end of the book

and it is also published in the LOVE IS LOVE Poetry Anthology in aid of Orlando’s Pulse Victims Fund.

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Let Your Heart Decide

 

~Samuel and Thomas~

My love, lie down beside me.

Let us gaze at the stars above.

Wonder with me

At how we came to be.

Hold me now and for all eternity

 

My heart lies with thine.

Forever joined with no more pain.

Our souls entwined,

Never to be parted again.

Side by side we rest until the end of time.

 

Let Your Heart Decide

Buy Links

Paperback available via 

CreateSpace | B & N

 Amazon.com | Amazon UK  | Amazon DE | Amazon FR

eBook 

Smashwords | ARe | PayHip | B & N | Kobo

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Add on Goodreads 

 ~O~

 Please visit the Rainbow Snippets Facebook Group for more links to great fiction.

The gang posts throughout the weekend, so check back a few times if you can.

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Rainbow Snippets is a group for LGBTQ+ authors, readers, and bloggers to gather once a week to share six sentences from a work of fiction–a WIP or a finished work or even a 6-sentence book recommendation.

~O~

Sign up for my newsletter HERE to keep in contact via email.

 

 

 

 

 

Audiobook Review ~ The Downs



Title: The Downs
Author: Kim Fielding  Narrator: K.C. Kelly
Publisher: Phyllis Gerstenfeld
Release Date: 09-30-2016
Genre(s): Fantasy, Dystopian
Length: 3 hours and 37 mins
Heat Level: 2 flames out of 5
Rating: 5 stars out of 5

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As the son of a wealthy man, Enitan Javed has spent his life frivolously – drinking, fighting, and making love. But after his father dies, Enitan is unjustly accused of murdering him and is given the harshest sentence possible. Judged irredeemable, he is banished to the Downs. As even young children know, nothing lives in the Downs except demons who delight in torturing the condemned. Brutalized by the men who transport him to his fate, Enitan has nothing left but his thirst for vengeance.

His plummet to the Downs nearly kills him, and Enitan finds himself battered and helpless in a frightening, mysterious land. But many surprises await him there, including a strange man named Rig. And the realization that the demons he must face aren’t at all the ones he expected.


This story was originally written as a part of the Goodreads M/M Romance Group’s Love is an Open Road” event. Group members were asked to write a story prompt inspired by a photo of their choice. Authors of the group selected a photo and prompt that spoke to them and wrote a short story.

The story is still available for free on Goodreads.

“He stood, head bowed, body tense, waiting. No matter what happened next, his life would never be the same…”

A naked man stands with his back to the viewer, a plain white floor beneath his feet. Ahead of him, a pair of large black doors are ajar, revealing a glimpse of bright light. The man’s shoulders are slightly hunched and his head is bowed; he appears hesitant to face whatever fate awaits him through the doors.

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five-stars

The magical combination of Kim Fielding’s lovely prose and K.C. Kelly’s superb narration never fails to entertain. I listened and followed the text at the same time because I just love Kim’s writing. This certainly is an outstanding story. Her imagination creates wonderful new worlds with flawed yet beautiful characters.

K.C. Kelly’s delivery perfectly suits this tale, its steady pace, and the gradual revelation of the fantasy world. He brings the story and characters to life, imparting the right emotions and tone throughout.

I particularly enjoyed this fantasy story and the excellent world building. It’s similar but on a smaller scale to Brute. There’s a clear contrast between Enitan’s luxurious life in the city and the basic and sometimes frighteningly dangerous life in The Downs, with its demons, caustic fog, and venomous creatures. For all its harshness, the people who inhabit the Downs appear to be unselfish and more accepting of others. They live in a world where same sex relations are the norm.

The two main characters come across as believable and real. They are both physically and emotionally imperfect, but together they slowly find love and healing in each other. It’s not instant and that’s what I love about Kim’s stories. She gives them time to get to know each other and build a friendship first.

Enitan is the proverbial rich kid who likes to fight and fuck. He is wronged by his sister and judged as unredeemable. He hankers after revenge.

Like Brute, Rig is big and lumbering and disfigured. Both Rig and Brute have a heart of gold and consider others before themselves. Rig’s backstory is heart-wrenchingly sad and when his future with Enitan is in doubt I could see him being broken all over again.

This is a story of love and hate, revenge and redemption, and of finding peace and happiness with your lot in life and with the person you love. A story of second chances and discovering what’s important in life.

“I don’t want to die. But if I have a choice between a few minutes with you or an eternity without, well … I choose you … I will always choose you.”

A slow and steady yet beautifully sweet romance set in an imaginary world. Highly recommended.

 

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Audible.com | Audible UK

FREE ebook on Goodreads

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