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The Scars of Life by David Blyth #kindleunlimited #giveaway

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: The Scars of Life

Author and Publisher: David Blyth

Cover Artist: David Blyth

Release Date:  June 1, 2023

Genre: Contemporary Romance/Literary Fiction, mystery/suspense

Tropes: Sexual identity, bisexuality, forbidden love

Themes: Psychological twist, mystery, family drama

Trigger Warning: Supplementary themes involve sexual identity and a teenage incestuous occurrence: neither are covered in detail, or described graphically, as they were ‘incidents’ rather than relationships, though they have an impact on the development of the narrative.

Heat Rating:  2 – 3 flames

Length: 95 000 words/362 pages 

It is a standalone story and does not end on a cliffhanger.

It has a HEA of sorts – it fits vaguely into the romance genre with a lot of psychological suspense and mystery interwoven.

Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK

Paperback also available from Barnes and Noble 

 

A troubled mind, a dysfunctional love story, a psychological twist….

 

Blurb 

Paul Somerfield, a young journalist for Planet Earth magazine, shares a brief friendship with the enigmatic Mike Stokes during an assignment in Devon. It leads to a disruptive fascination and a reluctant complicity in events that evolve from Mike’s tragic past.

 On a journey where emotions influence his brittle control, Paul pursues the truth. But the truth has many disguises which disrupt his relationships, his rationality and his life.

A reminder of how fragile the stability of love and trust can be: a journey that follows fear and doubt as they steer lives into a downward spiral of destruction. 

 

Excerpt 

(To place in context: Paul (the main character) has just taken a trip over the moors (Dartmoor, Devon, UK) with Mike (the mysterious second character) who he met just a few days ago and befriended).

After a few minutes, with the sun transferring energy to untanned skin, Paul plunged forward to swim towards the opposite bank. Standing up in the shallow water, his gaze rested on his friend still stretched out below him. Mike’s eyes remained closed, the gentle rise and fall of breath the only movement in his body. He could almost have been asleep, but Paul knew he was not, and equally certain of Mike’s awareness of a close observer, perhaps another gift to them both from the custodian of the paradise who chose to share it. Paul was neither embarrassed nor aroused by the hedonic posture, which perfectly balanced the equilibrium, complimenting the setting. He only felt gratitude.

Time slowed to allow appreciation of the scene. Eventually, with reluctance lest the spell be broken, Paul spoke again, “You need another cold dip, mate.” The words were an intrusion. He strained to speak at all. An atmosphere of expectancy subdued his responses.

Mike remained silent. As he turned his head, his eyes filled with a remote but compelling vision. Paul was a prisoner to that gaze. The surroundings drifted out of focus as the man held out a hand in an undeniable gesture of reception.

The sensual element formed a command. With water lapping knees, he leaned as fingers enclosed one arm in a soft grip. Mike’s eyes held a silent appeal. It defied refusal. Legs felt weak, folded, he fell forward, his free hand placed near Mike’s shoulder.

“Mike….” Words came like sobs from his lips, “I … I don’t … I can’t….” He took shattered breaths, which formed around, “I’m sorry….”

Steady hands cradled his bowed head in a gentle caress. Wet hair supplemented the tears that unmanned him. The softest touches of Mike’s fingers smoothed them from his cheeks.

“Get out of the water, Paul.” Words almost whispered, close to his ear, with barely disguised authority.

Paul responded, unconsciously, climbing onto the stone.

Lines of sweat blurred his eyes. The atmosphere, heavy with anticipation, directed his senses, regulated his responses. Or, a will projected from a powerful force far below him, buried in the rock beneath. The body below him appeared able to harness that power without the need for physical participation. Paul, aware of the reaction of his own body to so sensual a situation, was powerless to subdue it. His skin absorbed the life below with every touch. Nerves ignited with every caress. His senses stimulated by conduction from another’s, as the strained form below him ascended the pinnacles of climactic rapture. Salt tears and sweat, sun warmed skin against his lips, shared breaths of confined desire; the noise of life pounding at his ear, the considerate grip of passion embracing him with a bond of impregnability. All volition was gone.

Suddenly, as though perpetrated by a violent act upon the man below him, the body became still. Only Mike’s relaxed breathing convinced Paul he was innocent of such a deed. Time was striving to catch up with its unnatural stagnancy. A stale memory of desire stained his mind like a contamination of his thoughts; the fruit of an unguarded crop of passion, which left behind the bitterest aftertaste.

Paul stared at the slope they walked down earlier. Then he stood, turned, and dived back into the water. He held no immediate aspiration to emerge from that tranquil medium, doing so only when the pain in his chest forced him to return to reality. Thrusting his feet towards the bed of the stream, he launched to the surface, gasping for air. The vision that met his eyes when his violent breaths had calmed was of a dream shattered. The picture was not as it appeared earlier. The sky painted a tormented brown. The breathtaking scene, transformed to a bleak and forlorn landscape. Air and water around him, tainted with pollution.

Turning his eyes across the water, he saw Mike walking up the slope wearing his shorts, boots held by their laces in one hand, his T-shirt trailing from the other and dragged along the grass. Swimming to the bank, reaching his clothes, he fought jeans over a wet body and slipped on his shoes. Grasping his shirt and camera bag, he stumbled up the slope in his haste. “Mike! Wait!” he called in a weak voice, breathing hard. The man did not respond to his cry. Catching up as they entered the trees, he reached out to the man’s shoulder, halting his progress.

Mike turned, a hard, almost pitiless stare, as he looked deep into Paul’s eyes.

For a moment, Paul was unable to speak. So intense a visage, it took away what little breath he had left. “You bastard! Don’t walk away from me as though your dignity’s been bruised.” He dropped his shirt and bag to his feet, and braced both hands on his knees. Breathing heavily, he waited for some reaction.

“Don’t lecture me about dignity.” The man answered, sharply.

He felt a consuming fury growing within. Standing again, Paul received a harsh look of accusation. As anger conquered instincts, he swung a clenched fist towards the man’s head. The punch found its target, striking a heavy blow to the jaw. Mike made no attempt to avoid the impact; blood soon appeared between his lips, trailing down the side of his chin. He stood motionless, looking into the eyes of his assailant. Paul remained poised, as though prepared to deliver another attack. Yet, in reality, he’d been stunned by the recognition of his actions. Mike’s eyes never flinched as he reached towards the fist, then enclosed it in a strong grip. Paul stood, mentally helpless and physically defeated, as the man lowered the arm back to his side.

“Paul, let’s go home.” The expression on his face softened before he turned to walk ahead.

 

About the Author  

David Blyth was born in Staffordshire, in the UK. He graduated from Nottingham and Wolverhampton Universities.

He lived for many years in South Africa, where he witnessed the political and social transformation during and after apartheid.

His interests, apart from writing, include anything that helps him to stay relatively sane.

The Scars of Life was written during a two-year overland exploration of southern, central and east Africa; much was achieved sitting under the shade of a huge mango tree on the shores of Lake Malawi, always with a beer near at hand.

Separate Development, which is in fact his second novel, though published first, was written at his home in the English Midlands.

He is currently working on his third.

 

Social Media Links

Blog/Website  |  Facebook Profile  |  Facebook Author Page

 

Giveaway

Enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway for a chance to win

an ebook copy of The Scars of Life and Separate Development.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Hosted by Gay Book Promotions


 

Don’t Look Back In Anger (Two Tribes Series 3) by Kristian Parker #giveaway

SERIES TOUR and AUTHOR INTERVIEW

Two Tribes Series by Kristian Parker 

The mean streets of Manchester are the scene for a blood thirsty gang war. But with battle lines drawn, three heroes find themselves falling in love at the worst possible time.

The war for supremacy has begun. 

 

BOOK 3 – NEW RELEASE

Book Title: Don’t Look Back In Anger

Author: Kristian Parker

Release Date: May 30, 2023

Genre: Contemporary M/M Romance

Trope: Second chance love

Themes: Gangster, action

Length: 50 123 words

Heat Rating: 4 flames    

It is not a standalone book, but does not end on a cliffhanger.

Goodreads 

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

Publisher  |  Amazon US  |  Amazon UK 

 

Blurb

Revenge is best served cold, yet old embers can burn hot.

Lorenzo de Luca has come back to Manchester with revenge on his mind.

Supposedly killed by evil gangster Jonny Wellingham’s hitmen fifteen years ago, Lorenzo has waited a long time for this. He has to stay focused. And he does…until a past lover comes back into his life.

But old embers can spark a flame and the couple pick up where they left off—but the war has only just begun, and everyone is fair game…and Lorenzo’s distraction gives Jonny the opportunity he needs to strike a deadly blow.

Torn between his burning need for vengeance and the scorching heat of love, which will Lorenzo sacrifice?

Reader advisory: This book contains scenes of violence, murder, organised crime, sex work, and drugs trafficking. There are also instances of homophobia.

 

Excerpt from Don’t Look Back In Anger

Lorenzo de Luca turned off the motorway into the suburbs of South Manchester. Back in the day, he’d had a little bedsit around here. It had been fifteen years since he’d been here. Surely they hadn’t changed the roads, though.

A building that used to house a tailor’s and now held a vape shop told him he had the right street. As he drove up, his heart sank. The little row of terraced houses that had been converted into bedsits was long gone. A soulless red-brick block sat in its place with a ton of cars outside. He supposed this was progress.

To be fair, the bedsit had been pretty ropey. One of the windows never fully shut and the neighbour used to play music at all hours of the day and night. Lorenzo hadn’t cared. He had been in his twenties and loving that he had a place to call his own. But he wouldn’t be seen dead having a coffee in a place like that these days, never mind staying the night. He had come a long way since those days.

His old home hadn’t been his main destination anyway. He parked up and walked in the footsteps of his twenty-seven-year-old self.

Many a time, he, Jonny and Harry had staggered up this street after spending some of their ill-gotten gains in the bars nearby. They’d been untouchable in those days—Lorenzo and Harry had helped Jonny take control of Manchester’s criminal underworld. Everyone cowered when Jonny Wellingham’s Boys swaggered past—their reputation for swift justice had been earned tenfold.

Lorenzo crossed the road and soon found the path he wanted. It ran up a back alley of the next street. The red brick walls of the terraces hadn’t changed. Memories flooded into his mind like a tsunami.

At the end of the alley, he came to a big car park where he and the lads would set up shop every Wednesday. A regular community operation trading out of a clapped-out Volkswagen campervan. The police had never known a thing.

At the weekends, they’d only dealt in town. However, Jonny had soon realised that a lot of people liked to have their drugs before a night out. So, he would arrange for the van to be in this out-of-the-way spot and punters would come under cover of darkness to do their shopping. One man exclaimed they could only do better if they had a reward points system.

For a moment, Jonny had actually considered it.

A number of public pathways led off the car park. They followed a network of man-made waterways that had been dug to save the area from flooding. As a by-product, they had also created a thriving nature reserve. City dwellers, starved of green space, used them for cycling, jogging and dog walking.

The area had been gentrified since Lorenzo’s day. When he had been here, these walkways were the domain of alcoholics and working girls whose customers didn’t mind a bunk up against a tree. It was hilarious to him that the middle classes now brought their kids here to study wildlife.

Lorenzo hadn’t come here to see insects or birds today. He could remember running through the car park as though the devil himself were after him. Tracing his previous footsteps, knowing what had awaited him that night, sent chills across his skin.

There had been few times in his life when he had experienced real terror. That night, fifteen years ago, still haunted his nightmares.

He’d been watching television in his little flat when they’d burst through the door. Two of them had grabbed his arms while Frank, one of Jonny’s lads, had walked up to him.

Lorenzo and Frank had always got on well. The distress at why they had come to inflict pain on him burnt as hot today as it had then. That was before Lorenzo had learnt that true loyalty was a rare diamond, to be cherished when found.

“Wellingham doesn’t like your sort,” Frank had sneered, grabbing his face. “Shirt-lifters. Problem for you is, he can’t just sack you. That leaves only one way out, Lorenzo.”

A flash of metal told him all he needed to know about Frank’s intentions. Before he could aim, Lorenzo had broken free and leapt through the downstairs window.

The scars on his calves still told that story. His legs had been burning with pain as he’d run across the tarmac, desperate to get to the darkened paths. His thinking had been that he knew this area well. He hoped his attackers didn’t.

Retracing that fateful night, he followed the twists and turns. They seemed so innocent in the cold winter sunlight. He could still remember the taste of metallic dread in his mouth. In those days, Lorenzo had been fast. Yet his pursuers had fanned out so he didn’t know which way to turn. Voices sounding from every angle sent him into a whirlpool of fear and confusion.

He rounded a hawthorn bush and stopped in his tracks. The hairs on the back of his neck stood on end. The little pool where my flight came to an end. The first bullet hit him like a juggernaut smashing into his shoulder. He’d lost his balance and fallen face down into the pool. The pain had seared through his body like hot knives. Instinctively, he reached up and touched where only a scar remained.

Two more bullets had hit him after that, one puncturing a lung. The other had narrowly missed any organs and gone straight through him. Doctors in his future would tell him how lucky he had been. Lying in that ice cold water, waiting to die, luck hadn’t felt very close to him.

He’d silently prayed to God to take him quickly, yet he hadn’t lost consciousness. Instead, he’d lain there, as still as possible, while his would-be assassins discussed if they’d killed him or not. Every second, he expected an insurance bullet to blow his brains out.

Then his hopes had soared when he’d thought they might be retreating. He’d barely been able to trust his ears as the sounds of his attackers faded.

Lorenzo crouched down and ran his hands through the water. The silt made it a dirty brown. He could imagine a time it would have been deep red with his blood.

Standing up, he filled his lungs with Manchester air. “I am back,” he said out loud.

Seeing the place he’d lain, terrified to even breathe, brought a resolve to him. His body had almost frozen as he lay there, waiting to be sure they had gone. Once he could take no more, he had crawled out of the pool, the blood loss and cold making him limp and unable to get up. Instead, Lorenzo had crawled to the car park. Eventually he had got to the main road and thankfully someone driving past had seen him.

They’d saved his life, and he had no idea who they were. He wished he did. They had gone before the paramedics arrived. He supposed they’d recognised him and wanted nothing more to do with it. He could understand that. A man with three gunshot wounds screamed danger. He’d been lucky they’d even dared make the emergency call.

Today he planned to be the one to make an anonymous call. Adrenaline coursed through his veins as he got out the piece of paper with a number written on it. He’d got it from his nephew’s friend. She’d thought he intended to use it to taunt Jonny. In a way he did, although he had a much more important outcome on his mind too.

With a shaking hand, he connected the call.

“Who is this?” came the voice that he hadn’t heard in decades yet still seemed so familiar to him. “This is a private number. How did you get it?”

“It’s a blast from your past,” Lorenzo replied.

“Tell me who you are.”

“Meet me at the location I message to you,” Lorenzo continued. “And all will be revealed. Come alone if you want me to show myself.”

He terminated the call. The fish was on the hook. Now he just had to reel it in.

 

 

CHECK OUT THE FIRST TWO BOOKS IN THE SERIES

BOOK 1

Book Title: Fool’s Gold

Author: Kristian Parker

Publisher: Pride Publishing

Cover Artist: Erin Dameron-Hill

Release Date: March 14, 2023

Genre Contemporary M/M Romance

Tropes: Forbidden love, opposites attract

Themes: Gangster, action 

Heat Rating: 4 flames    

Length:  52 069 words/233 pages

It is not a standalone book, but does not end on a cliffhanger

Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

First for Romance  |  Amazon US  |   Amazon UK 

 

Blurb 

Liam Moseley has been living a lie ever since he joined Manchester’s notorious crime boss Jonny Wellingham ten years ago. Liam is gay, and that could get him killed in the deadly world he has fallen into.

When he meets handsome Italian Marco Ponti, Liam’s whole world is turned on its head. Marco is in town looking for business opportunities for his uncle in Rome, and makes Liam see his life in a brand-new light.

But all is not as it seems, especially when Marco shows Liam the past isn’t always as it appears and the future can change in the blink of an eye. In a dangerous world where each job could be Liam’s last, he finds himself fighting for love as well as survival.

Liam will have to put everything he holds dear on the line to make his dreams come true.

 

Excerpt from Fool’s Gold

“So you’re Manchester born and bred?” Marco asked.

“Can’t you tell by the accent?” Liam replied.

Marco beamed. “I love the Manc accent. It’s so…expressive.”

“That’s the first time I’ve heard it called that before,” Liam said. “I’d rather have an Italian one.”

“You find it sexy?”

Marco’s eyes dared him to answer honestly. Something about this guy gave Liam confidence. No man had ever had this effect on him. “Yeah, I do,” he replied before glancing down.

“Why do you do that?” Marco asked, leaning forward, his elbows on the table.

“Do what?” he asked.

“Break eye contact every time you say something. Are you ashamed?”

Liam shifted uncomfortably. “No, it’s not that.”

“Tell me what it is, then?” Marco asked, his voice soothing and sincere.

“I guess I don’t think I have anything to say worth listening to,” he replied, eventually.

To his astonishment, Marco’s foot connected with his leg. The pressure told him it was absolutely on purpose.

“I respectfully disagree, Liam. I think I’d listen to you. Whatever you had to say.”

He had that burning sensation on his neck again. It had made him so paranoid at school.

“Sorry, I have made you blush,” Marco continued.

“Don’t worry about it. I always bloody blush. They called me Po at school because of it.”

Marco frowned. “What?”

“The red Teletubby?” Liam expected him to burst into that laughter again. Most people did when he confided this, but instead, Marco just shook his head.

“Kids can be so cruel. But who cares? They are in your past.”

“Yeah, they’re probably sweeping up shit in the hospital now. Serves them right.”

This time Marco did seem amused. “Said with true passion. I like it. So, what do you do, Liam?”

Here it came. The inevitable question. He could hardly say he was a lackey for one of the biggest gangsters in the northwest of England, so he reverted to his stock answer. “Oh, you know, bit of this, bit of that. How about you?”

“As I said, my uncle works in shipping. I’m over here seeing if there is any potential to expand to Manchester.”

Liam nodded. “The city is booming. You could do a lot worse.”

“That’s what I thought. I like what I see more and more.”

The look which followed that statement practically oozed with intent. This time, Liam forced himself to meet Marco’s gaze. “I’ve never been to Italy, but maybe I should,” he replied. “Rome seems pretty good from where I’m sitting.”

“Ah, you definitely should,” Marco said, leaning back. “It is beautiful. I’ve been the length and breadth of it with my job. I worked in Venice recently. Bellissima.”

Liam had seen pictures of the water world on television. “Better than the canals in Manchester. They’re just full of shopping trolleys and used condoms.”

Marco laughed again. It was so loud and carefree that Liam had to stop himself from looking around to see if anyone noticed. But he forced himself to relax and ended up giggling along with him. It had been so long since he’d done something like this.

“This is better,” Marco said.

“What is?”

“You are relaxing. You seemed very tense earlier,” Marco said. “I thought perhaps you’d changed your mind about me.”

“Oh, nothing like that,” Liam said hurriedly. “It’s just that I’m not out, you see. I don’t normally do this.”

Marco’s stunning eyes widened. “Who isn’t out these days?”

Shaking his head, Liam took a swig of his drink. “Me,” he said, placing the drink down. “In my line of work, it isn’t the done thing.”

A group of lads banged through the door. Liam frantically scanned each face but didn’t recognise any of them.

“Wow. I can’t imagine being in the closet. At my eighteenth birthday party, I came out. I figured if I had to enter adulthood, people should know what they were dealing with. Although I like to make a statement now and then. It keeps them on their toes.”

The lads were being quite rowdy. Even the barman appeared nervous.

“You’re very brave,” Liam said.

“Not really. My uncle is gay too, so it was a well-beaten path. No one in our family cares as long as you’re healthy and happy.”

“Sounds perfect.”

Marco chuckled, but Liam couldn’t relax. He watched the group of lads out of the corner of his eye. He could spot trouble a mile off, and these lads were desperate for it.

“We’re a long way from perfect, believe me,” Marco said. “But we get by.”

Liam drained his glass. “You want another?”

Marco shook his head. “There are a lot of things I’d like from you, Liam…but another drink is not one of them.”

The change in tempo took Liam by surprise. Heat crept over his face and he didn’t know what to say in return. He had never been any good at the whole game-playing thing. “Just nipping to the loo,” he managed before bolting for the door.

 

BOOK 2

Book Title: Everything Changes

Author: Kristian Parker

Release Date: April 11, 2023

Genre: Contemporary M/M Romance

Trope: Close proximity

Themes: Gangster, action

Heat Rating: 4 flames    

Length: 50 578 words

It is not a standalone book, but does not end on a cliffhanger

Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

First for Romance  |  Amazon US  |   Amazon UK 

 

Blurb 

Fear can open doors we never dreamt possible.

Shaun Moseley is in a trap and it’s all his brother, Liam’ s fault.

Living a normal life running a B&B in Blackpool, he finds himself right in the middle of a gang turf war in Manchester. Shaun is an alien in this horrifying new world of drugs, guns and violence.

Shaun rebels against everyone, isolating himself in the process. But a terrifying experience opens his eyes to gang member Enzo Ponti. Shaun may be trapped for the time being, but that doesn’t mean he can’t have a little fun along the way, right?

He dismissed Enzo as just another hired killer but when he scratches the surface, he finds much more there.

But evil gangster, Jonny Wellingham, wants revenge on the gang and has set his sights on Shaun. Can he live long enough to find just how deep Enzo’ s waters are?

 

Excerpt from Everything Changes

They stood side by side, watching some birds flocking over the reservoir.

“When I was in a yoga retreat in Kathmandu, they had all sorts of gay-coloured birds,” Shaun said. “All we have are shitty brown things.”

He kicked a stone.

“I’ve seen you doing your yoga,” Enzo said. “Did you learn it on your travels? You should come and do some weights with me and Giovanni. It would be far more beneficial than getting yourself into silly poses.”

“Have you been perving over me then?”

Enzo reddened. “It’s not a big house. You can’t help it.”

Shaun regretted his big mouth. Enzo had done something kind for him and he should make an effort not to shoot him down every time he tried to speak. They wandered a little farther down the path.

“It’s weird to think that my whole childhood was spent in that place,” Shaun said, nodding to Manchester in the distance. “Where did you grow up?”

“I grew up in Rome. Well, a little village about an hour out of the city. I was very lucky in a lot of ways, but…”

Shaun glanced at him. He found him difficult to read, but there was definite pain there.

“But what?”

“Being attracted to men was not part of that world. Not until Uncle Z came. He changed everyone’s view.”

Shaun whirled around. “You’re gay?” he asked in astonishment.

Enzo raised an eyebrow. “Is it so surprising? Marco. Uncle Z.”

“Bloody hell,” Shaun said. “My gaydar is way out of sync.”

“Perhaps if you’d spoken to me once in a while, you’d have had a better chance of figuring me out,” Enzo said.

His words weren’t spiteful but simply stating a fact. A fact Shaun couldn’t even begin to deny. Embarrassment burnt over his skin. He had been behaving obstructively since coming to the farm. Now he could see himself through Enzo’s eyes and he didn’t like it. “Have I been such a bitch?” he ventured.

Enzo glanced over at him and winked. Shaun had noticed that Enzo was handsome—it was impossible not to. But he hadn’t taken the time to see his dark brown eyes or the way they crinkled at the sides when he smiled. Whether it was the fact he’d just saved his life or something deeper, Shaun imagined staring into those eyes and losing himself.

“We should get back,” he said. “I need to finish tonight’s dinner. I know my place and I don’t fancy being shouted at by Marco for not doing it.”

“And there he goes,” Enzo muttered. “Back into his shell. You would find this whole experience a damned sight easier if you were a little nicer to those around you. We are not all villains, you know.”

Once again, a flash of rage blew through Shaun’s system. He didn’t want to be schooled in how to be a gangster. Not by anyone, no matter how deep their eyes were.

“Thank you for the advice on how to survive a fucking gang war that I want nothing to do with,” he snapped. “I was terrified today, Enzo. Do you understand what that means? I can’t just toe the line and chuckle while my brother or any of you go out there time and again. If I get to know you, like you, it just adds to my fears. I can’t do it. I won’t.”

He was babbling now, but his mouth couldn’t seem to stop. To his amazement, Enzo came over and wrapped his arms around him. Shaun fitted perfectly, his head nestling in the crook of Enzo’s neck.

Enzo’s strong arms instantly calmed him and the shivers he had been battling since he got in the car simply disappeared.

“I get terrified too,” Enzo said softly.

“How do you stand it?”

“I have no idea. You’re not the only one in the whirlpool, I suppose.”

Shaun looked up just as Enzo stared down at him. Their lips were almost touching, but then reality hit Shaun like a sledgehammer. Having an affair with a gangster had put his brother in the hospital. He had no intention of spinning that particular bottle.

He broke away, trying to ignore the hurt on Enzo’s face. “They’ll be missing us now,” he said, smoothing down his jacket.

 

About the Author  

I have written for as long as I could write. In fact, before, when I would dictate to my auntie. I love to read, and I love to create worlds and characters.

I live in the English countryside. When I’m not writing, I like to get out there and think through the next scenario I’m going to throw my characters into.

Inspiration can be found anywhere, on a train, in a restaurant or in an office. I am always in search of the next character to find love in one of my stories. In a world of apps and online dating, it is important to remember love can be found when you least expect it.

 

Author Links

Blog/Website  |   Facebook  |   Twitter

Instagram  |   Newsletter Sign-up

 

Giveaway 

Enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway for a chance to win

signed paperbacks of each book in the series.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Hosted by Gay Book Promotions

 

INTERVIEW WITH KRISTIAN PARKER

The prized possession you value above all others…

Probably my teddy bear from when I was born. He’s getting on a bit now (aren’t we all) so he lives in a dustbag in my wardrobe to save his fur. But I know he’s there and that’s all that matters.

The unqualified regret you wish you could amend…

That I didn’t push myself into fiction sooner. I let life and sensible decisions get in the way of what I truly love. It is so exciting to be able to create new worlds and characters and for people to read about them.

The film you can watch time and time again…

I am a total Star Wars nerd. Have been ever since I was six years old, and Dad took me to see The Empire Strikes Back. If it has jedis and blasters in it, I’m on board.

The happiest moment you will cherish forever…

I’m not sure if it’s the happiest but being at Glastonbury on a sunny afternoon watching Dolly Parton with 100,000 other people was pretty special. I also had a pint of vodka and coke in my hand, so I was very happy indeed.

Your early recollections of writing fiction…

 Before I could even write I would dictate stories to my great aunt. They were about a superhero loosely based on Wonder Woman. I’ve no idea what terrible foes she faced. Maybe she will make a comeback one day.

The way you would spend your fantasy twenty-four hours, with no travel restrictions…

Wow. Big question. Okay I’d wake up in Africa. I went to South Africa a few years ago and being in the game reserves was magical. So, let’s breakfast there.

For lunch and a bit of shopping, it can only be New York, can’t it?

In the evening, I love a sunset and Ibiza hits the spot. Watching the sun go down in a lovely restaurant was a wonderful experience indeed.

The figure from history you would most like to buy a pie and a pint…

Mark Ashton. The movie Pride portrayed his story. Unfortunately, he passed away from an AIDS related illness when he was twenty-seven. I’d love to be able to tell him that his legacy lives on.

The piece of wisdom you would pass onto a child…

Find what puts fire in your belly then work really hard for it. Writing is that for me. I am not a full-time writer, but I can’t not write.

The character you enjoyed writing the most…

I have a soft spot for Marco Ponti in my new trilogy, Two Tribes. He’s not even a main character. He is integral to the story though. I enjoy him being caught up in a situation and to think how he would react. He’s a bad boy with a heart of gold. Who doesn’t love that?

The character you found difficult to write…

A forthcoming Queens Crescent story, Public Affair, I found it hard to get the dynamic between the main characters. I had to write the whole first draft before I’d fully got it. Then I went back and made sure the story reflected it.

The book you enjoyed planning/writing the most…

Two Tribes definitely. All my other stories have been standalone with overlaps. Whilst each book in Two Tribes is its own self-contained story, there is an overarching war that had to be plotted just as carefully. It was great fun.

And the promo…

For 2023 I have two series. Two Tribes is set in gangland Manchester, England. A vicious turf war kicks off. Liam Moseley and his brother, Shaun find themselves caught up in it. Their stories are very different but dependent on winning this war. It takes a face from the past with his own axe to grind to bring the story to its conclusion.

My other series is completely different. Queens Crescent is London’s most exclusive postcode. Each house in this billionaire’s row has a story to tell. Christmas at Queens Crescent and Pole Position are out now. More incoming.

Thank you.

 

Don’t Date A DILF by DJ Jamison #kindleunlimited #giveaway

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Don’t Date A DILF (Rules We Break, Book 1)

Author: DJ Jamison

Publisher: Must Love Books LLC

Cover Artist: Morningstar Ashley

Release Date: May 25, 2023

Genre: Contemporary M/M Romance

Tropes: Single dad, teacher/parent, fake dating, small town

Themes: Small town life, family, starting over, bi/pan awakening

Heat Rating: 5 flames

Length:  95 000 words

This is Book 1 in a new series. It does not end on a cliffhanger.

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Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

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Blurb

I have one rule to live by: Don’t Date a DILF.

I’ve seen the consequences of blurring the boundaries between teaching and dating, and I am not about to take that kind of risk.

But I didn’t count on Hunter Rhodes walking into my school. Never expected that the broad-shouldered, stubble-jawed, absolute glory of a man would be such a sweet and caring father. Or that as a seemingly straight man, he might decide he wants me.

If my Nana has her way…I’ll be in love with someone by the end of the school year, but there’s only one man who tempts me.

With her matchmaking becoming overwhelming and half the single women in Granville setting their sights on Hunter, we’re both feeling the pressure. Faking a relationship could get everyone off our backs.

It seems like fun and games for Hunter, but separating pretend feelings from real won’t be so simple for me. And then there’s that rule…

Can I date a DILF without disaster—or will all my fears come true?

Don’t Date a DILF is Book 1 of Rules We Break, a spin-off series from Games We Play, set in the small, quirky town of Granville, where nosy residents meddle in one another’s lives, great friendships are made, and silly innuendos are a way of life.

 

Excerpt

Clark’s voice filtered in from the hallway.

“Nana, for the last time, I was trying… Yeah, well, maybe I should run all your proposed dates through my friends first if you think Percy Helix was a good choice!”

I smirked at his sass, then had to muffle a laugh when he followed it up with, “No, I’m not being sassy. I’m sorry, Nana.”

Fuck, that was adorable.

Clark was a grown man who had his shit together far more than I ever would, and yet here he was, getting scolded by his grandmother. There was something so sweet and wholesome about that.

He glanced toward the classroom and caught sight of me through the doorway. He held up one finger, in the universal sign to wait a minute.

“We can talk more later, Nana. I have a parent here for a meeting, okay? But I really don’t think another setup is a good idea… Because I don’t. Because it’s uncomfortable!” He groaned theatrically. “Yes, okay, we’ll talk later.”

He lowered the phone and turned toward me.

I winced. “Sorry. I didn’t mean to eavesdrop.”

He shrugged. “Well, you were at the pub, so…not like you didn’t know already.”

“Your nana feels pretty strongly about setting you up with a date, huh?”

“Unfortunately.”

“My mother hassles me every time we talk too,” I said.

“Must be something in the water,” Clark said with a pout.

Still adorable.

“Yeah, I actually lost my cool at work. Yelled at Tucker about how everyone in this town wants me to date. You know what we should do?”

“What?”

“Go on a date together.” I laughed. “That would shut everyone up.”

Clark’s eyes widened. “I think it would do the opposite.”

“You know what I mean though. Can’t set up a couple of guys who are already dating.” I wiggled my eyebrows. “Genius, right?”

 

About the Author

DJ Jamison writes romances about everyday life and extraordinary love featuring a variety of queer characters, from gay to bisexual to asexual. DJ grew up in the Midwest in a working-class family, and those influences can be found in her writing through characters coping with real-life problems: money troubles, workplace drama, family conflicts and, of course, falling in love. DJ spent more than a decade in the newspaper industry before chasing her first dream to write fiction. She spent a lifetime reading before that and continues to avidly devour her fellow authors’ books each night. She lives in Kansas with her husband, two sons, one snake, and a sadistic cat named Birdie.

 

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Separate Development by David Blyth #kindleunlimited #giveaway

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Separate Development 

Author and Publisher: David Blyth

Release Date: May 1, 2023

Genre: Contemporary LGBT Fiction/Literary Fiction

Tropes: An Intercontinental Love Story

Themes: LGBT, Bisexual, Interracial, South African, Apartheid, Medical (Doctor)

Heat Rating: 2-3 flames

Length: 120 000 words/420 pages

It is a standalone story and does not end on a cliffhanger.

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Buy Links Available in Kindle Unlimited

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An intercontinental love story 

 

Author’s note:

Separate Development is a work of fiction inspired by real events. Many names, places and timelines have been altered to provide anonymity to third parties. Character names do not reflect anyone, living or deceased, whom I have ever known. However, I would like to thank the real-life members of the family portrayed in this book for being part of my life, and for their understanding and acceptance. I recognise that their memories of the events described in the novel may be different from my own. There was never any intention to misrepresent anyone; in fact, I am honoured to have known them.

 

Blurb

At twenty-five, recently qualified Dr Jonathan Conner leaves his comfortable life and love in London, taking up a charitable post during the last months of South Africa’s apartheid system. Weeks from a planned visit by his long-standing girlfriend, he falls in love with a young African man in the northern homeland of Venda.

Their passionate, heart-rending love story unfolds against the backdrop of conflict between social tolerances that lag behind political freedoms.
Returning to England after eight years, he’s forced to confront the consequences of his decisions for those left behind in two very different worlds.

Through this story of love’s endurance beyond society’s acceptance and geographical separation, can the enduring power of the human heart overcome adversity?

 

Excerpt 

The stark beauty of Venda’s voluptuous landscape could have replaced many an artist’s requirement for naked models of either sex. Rounded hills, writhing between cleaved valleys, yearned for lustful hands to caress their contours in pleasurable embraces. Admittedly, on that solemn day, it was not a mental image to dwell on. But I was to make the journey more than once.

The last twenty miles were dirt, dust dry, following the undulating curvature of parched hillsides. Rain was a distant memory, the last breath of summer’s bounty, yet portions of verdant green interspersed the struggling rampant growth of a forgotten season. Soon the skies would fill again with heat born clouds, storage towers of sustenance, destined to release daily torrents. Today, the brightest greens picked out pockets of humanity, cultivated patches and plots, tall stands of maize, fringed with bananas and peppered with papayas. Water was available for those who worked hard enough to find it, and the rich African soil rewarded those who took the trouble. These oases were increasing in frequency, many still surrounded by round, thatched, mud-wall huts or rondavels, some supplemented by larger rectangular versions, roofs still often traditional but occasionally replaced by bright or rusty zinc. Tracks worn by years of footfall fed the settlements. Vehicular access was rare, but where it existed, the residences built of brick, though often rendered: similar modern bungalows to mine.

As the frequency of dwellings increased, so did the appearance of structures clearly having other functions. Eventually we reached a broad flat plane. Gone were the patches of green, and in their place, the straggling thorn bushes — which conquered any area where humanity didn’t — had grown to tall spreading trees; all were bare of leaf, yet in the seasons of rain, broad panoplies of shade would provide protection from Capricorn’s sun. The space, ringed with buildings of a relatively modern construction, had occasional notices of printed or hand painted letters attached. Enclosing one side of the quadrangle stood a long dormitory style block of rough plastered walls, patched and peeling paint representing the faded choices of many years, or perhaps revealing the use of colours kindly donated at the time. Windows, placed only a few inches below the rusty corrugated overhang of the roof, in some sections without frame or glass, allowed light yet probably deterred its occupants from external distraction. Three well-worn steps led to broad double doors, also reflecting the indecision or availability of bygone supplies of colour. Only the signage appeared to have received regular maintenance. Bold black lettering, written with skilled hands on a fresh blue base, told me Sarah’s directions had led me to park in front of Ha-nthabalala Secondary School, Established 1972. Headmaster: Mr Joseph Ramanala. The name had a slightly deeper blue background, suggesting it represented the most recent promotion to the post.

 

About the Author 

David Blyth was born in Staffordshire, in the UK. He graduated from Nottingham and Wolverhampton Universities with a BSC.hon and a PGCE. He lived for many years in South Africa, where he witnessed the political and social transformation during and after apartheid.

His interests, apart from writing, include anything that helps him to stay relatively sane.

Separate Development, which is in fact, his second novel, was written at his home in the English Midlands. It is due to be published in the spring of 2023.

His first novel, The Scars of Life, was written during a two-year overland exploration of southern, central and east Africa. Much was achieved sitting under the shade of a huge mango tree on the shores of Lake Malawi, always with a beer near at hand. It will be published during the summer of 2023.

 

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Love Beneath the Stars: A Matchmaker Wedding Novella by Claerie Kavanaugh 

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Love Beneath the Stars: A Matchmaker Wedding Novella 

Author: Claerie Kavanaugh 

Publisher: Half Caff Press 

Cover Artist: Lauren Dombrowski

Release Date: April 26, 2023 

Genres: Contemporary F/F Romance

Tropes: Age gap, celebrity, matchmaker, wedding 

Themes: Coming out, forgiveness

Heat Rating: 3 flames

Length: 30 000 words

It is a standalone story in the Entertaining Love series.

Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

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They say love conquers all, but what if getting it means losing your family?

 

Blurb 

After years of searching, a job gone wrong finally led Hollywood’s most famous matchmaker Eve to her soulmate in up-and-coming starlet Jemma Mason. For a year, they had pictured their perfect destination Valentine’s Day wedding. But when Jemma’s family arrives from Montana, they quickly learn perfection is hard to come by.

Jemma’s conservative brother has always been distant, but when he meets his sister’s fiancée, who is seven years her senior, he worries she’s moving way too fast and refuses to come to the wedding, let alone keep his promise to walk her down the aisle. Can love really conquer all, or are there some wounds that simply run too deep to be buried?

Eve and Jemma’s Wedding Novella. Sequel to LOVE AMONG THE STARS in the standalone sapphic celebrity romance series ENTERTAINING LOVE

 

Excerpt

When I turn to face Eve, she’s sitting more fully upright, concern etched across her beautiful features. “What’s wrong?”

“Apparently, a storm is coming,” Despondence drips from my words as I sink, onto the edge of the bed. “They want us to stay inside.”

Eve climbs out of the covers and wraps her arms around me. “We’ll be alright, Jemma. We’re together, and that’s all that matters.”

Her confidence is contagious, and I can’t help but smile. “You always know how to make me feel better, don’t you?”

“Of course.” She grins, kissing my cheek. “Now, let’s make the most of this unexpected day indoors.”

We spend the morning lounging in bed, sipping coffee and flipping through the cable channels on the TV. But as the wind outside picks up, so does our restlessness.

“Let’s play a game,” Eve suggests, sitting up and stretching her toned arms above her head.

“What kind of game?” I ask, intrigued.

She smirks devilishly. “Strip poker.”

My stomach flips at the thought of being naked in front of her, but I can’t deny the thrill that pulses through me. “You’re on.”

We grab a deck of cards from the nightstand and settle in on the plush carpet, the sound of the wind howling outside echoing in my ears. As the game progresses, clothing is discarded, and as Eve tosses her shirt onto the pile, I can’t help but let my eyes roam over her gorgeous curves and her smooth golden skin. A flush spreads across my cheeks as I drink her in

Eve smirks, arching an eyebrow. “Enjoying the view?”

I swallow hard, my mouth suddenly dry. “Very much so,” I reply, a slightly wanton rasp dancing at the edges of my words.

She crawls over to me on all fours, her eyes locked onto mine. “Why don’t you come a little closer?” I oblige, leaning in towards her, my heart pounding. She presses her body against mine, her skin hot against my own. My breath hitches as she trails her fingers down my spine, sending shivers through my body. I tangle my fingers in her hair, pulling her lips to mine. The kiss is electric, fire burning through my veins. I break away, gasping for air.

 

About the Author 

Claerie Kavanaugh has spent most of her life telling stories, but she never imagined herself writing romance. In fact, she used to think it should only be reserved for Hallmark movies. It wasn’t until college, when she discovered fanfiction, that she learned what romance was truly about: not just fluffy relationships and happily-ever-afters, but human connection, the desire to push one another to be better, and create hope that somewhere, somehow, everyone has someone.

When she’s not writing, she loves to travel and explore new cultures, helping other authors polish their works as a freelance editor, and singing while doing so. Broadway musicals are her soul-food, something her mother and sister know well. She constantly blasts the newest soundtrack through the halls of their Missouri home, much to the chagrin of her very sassy and spoiled cat.

 

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Fauxmance in the Falls by J.E. Birk #kindleunlimited #giveaway

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Fauxmance in the Falls 

Author: J.E. Birk 

Publisher: Maple Mountains Press

Cover Artist: Cate Ashwood 

Release Date: April 20, 2023 

Genres: Contemporary M/M Romance, small town romance 

Tropes: Fake relationship, small town, age gap, alpha doctor, grumpy/sunshine

Themes: Redemption, coming out, found families 

Heat Rating:  4 flames 

Length:  Approx. 92 000 words and 331 pages

It’s the first book in the series and does not end on a cliffhanger.

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Never date your dream doctor

 

Blurb

I’m here to destroy this town. How did I end up in a fake relationship with its hero?

I’ve spent my life proving to my grandpa and dad that I’m more than just the Lewis family mistake. So when Grandpa sends me to Devon Falls, VT to take some ridiculous leaf festival to court, I head straight there and get to work. 

But Dr. Jack Lancer keeps getting in my way.

 He’s everywhere. Helping me out with my migraines, making me dinner, insisting people be nice to me even though I’m the enemy. Who is this guy? The next thing I know I’m pretending to be Jack’s boyfriend to get him out of a bind. I swear he’s putting kindness pills in my food or something.

Jack thinks he can fix me the same way he fixes everyone else. But I’m not broken. This podunk town will be when I’m done with it, though. And Jack? Well, he’s about to learn the meaning of the term “collateral damage.” Because I’ll do anything to win this case and end this festival. 

Even if it means losing something that feels an awful lot like love.

Fauxmance in the Falls is an age-gap romance featuring a small town full of quirks, a grumpy lawyer and a charming physician, a fake relationship gone wild, some inappropriate use of a doctor’s office, and a healthy mix of humor and angst. It stars Benson Lewis, who first appeared in the book Counterpoint.  

 

Excerpt

Benson stands before us, looking as wrecked as I could ever imagine seeing him. He’s barely standing upright, and there are dark circles surrounding his sagging eyes. He’s wearing a wrinkled pair of jogging pants and a shirt that looks like he’s sweated through it, and his facial expression screams of absolute misery. I simultaneously feel extremely guilty for knocking on his door and extremely glad that I did. “Benson,” I say softly. “Migraine?”

He nods, immediately wincing at the head motion. And that tiny little movement is all the cue I need to start taking charge.

“Elijah, I need you to run to the drug store,” I tell him quietly. I list off a series of items that Benson likely needs.

“Be right back,” Elijah whispers, though I never warned him about being quiet. He’s far more astute than his grandparents give him credit for. He runs off down the hall and I step into Benson’s space, examining him with my eyes. “How long?” I ask.

“Since the Thai restaurant.”

Shit. Almost twenty-four hours, then. “Have you taken anything?”

“Just aspirin.” He winces at the ray of light peeking around the door from the hallway. “Don’t have anything else,” he mumbles. I’m going to make sure we correct that the second he’s well enough for conversation. But right now, all I want to do is make him feel better.

“Okay,” I tell him gently. “We’ll fix it, Benson. I’ve got you. You’re not on your own anymore.”

He stares at me, squinting, and I notice his eyes are wet. “I’m really glad you’re here,” he says hoarsely.

I startle slightly. I know Benson well enough by now to know those probably aren’t words he says often.

I guide him gently into the apartment, which is a small studio with a double bed in one corner and a combination kitchen/living room taking up most of the space. The curtains are closed tightly. They’re mostly light-blocking, at least. I surprise him, I think, when I guide him over to the sofa and help him lay down there. “I’m going to get you some water and change your sheets,” I whisper. “Have you been able to keep food down?”

He shakes his head slightly.

“Well, I sent Elijah for applesauce and electrolytes. We’ll see if we can fix that.” I can feel his eyes track me as I make use of what his small space has to offer. I find a glass of water and help him sit up long enough to take a few sips. When he shakes his head at me, I don’t push for him to drink more. I find clean sheets and quickly make his bed, then grab some sweatpants and a Burlington U Law shirt from his dresser. “C’mon,” I urge him. “Let’s get you into some more comfortable clothes.”

He holds onto my shoulders as I help him step out of his pants. I look away to give him as much privacy as possible, but Benson draws my attention back to him when he says, “this isn’t really how I envisioned you getting in my pants for the first time.”

The corners of his lips are turned up in a hint of a wry grin, and my heart speeds up. Has he really had those thoughts too? Now is not the time for that conversation, unfortunately. “Me either,” I tell him, keeping things light as I help him into the fresh pants and shirt.

I change the sheets on the bed and get him settled into it before I dampen a washcloth with cool water. Some migraine patients are sensitive to any kind of touch when they have episodes like this, but Benson sighs with happiness when I lay the cloth across his forehead.

I sit down gently on the side of his bed. “When Elijah gets back we’ll try food and more water,” I tell him. “Get excited for that applesauce.”

Benson grimaces. “I’ll try it,” he promises. “I already feel better than I did. Thank you, Jack.”

I gently take one of his hands, and when he doesn’t object, I hold it while I rub my thumb against his palm. “Thank you for what?” I ask. I’m not sure what I’m being thanked for. Changing someone’s sheets and getting them some water when they’re ill are about the most basic things you can do for another human.

“No one’s ever really done this before. You know. For me,” he mutters. “Not lately, anyway.”

“Do you get migraines often?”  I ask him.

He sighs. “I used to get them a lot more when I was younger. I thought they were going away. But lately they’ve been getting worse.”

“Who used to take care of you when you got them?” I ask.

He shrugs into the sheets around him. “I think my nannies did. Well, some of them anyway. Until they… couldn’t anymore.”  Benson grimaces again, and I decide this isn’t the best time to have this conversation.

“You’re going to be okay,” I tell him. It’s a universal line I’ve used a million times in my career. Some patients believe it. Some don’t. From Benson’s expression, I can’t tell where he stands.

“It was worse last night,” he replies. “In the middle of the night. It was so bad. They’ve gotten worse lately, like I said. I was here, in this bed, and the pain was so awful I started to wonder if I was going to live through it. And I kept thinking… kept thinking that I didn’t want to die by myself in a studio apartment. Alone. All by myself.” He closes his eyes against pain I can’t see, and suddenly I need to be holding more than just his hand.

“You’re not alone,” I tell him. I lean over farther and graze his cheek with the fingers of my other hand. It’s a test to see if my touch hurts, but all he does is lean farther into it. And just like that, I know I’m doing the right thing. “You’re not alone right now,” I repeat. “And you never have to be alone again. Not if you don’t want to be. You have me now. Me and Elijah.”

Benson has settled his cheek deep into my hand at this point. He’s almost nuzzling it. “Not forever,” he mumbles. “Just for now. Just for pretend.”



About the Author 

J.E. Birk was raised in Vermont and is now adulting in Colorado with intermittent success. She is a long-time lover of stories, and she writes and reads in worlds where imperfect characters find their happily ever after. Snag free bonus content and stay up-to-date on J.E. Birk’s news and releases by signing up for her newsletter

 

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Sweet as Pie by Beth Bolden #kindleunlimited #giveaway

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Sweet as Pie

Author and Publisher: Beth Bolden

Cover Artist: Morningstar Ashley Designs

Release Date: April 13, 2023

Genre: Contemporary MM romance

Tropes: Grumpy/sunshine, opposites attract, small town

Themes: Family responsibilities, necessary change, unexpected love

Heat Rating: 4 flames

Length: 80 000 words

It is a standalone story.

Goodreads

 

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Blurb

Luca Moretti is grumpy—and he wouldn’t have it any other way.

Wrangling six—Italian—siblings and the family’s restaurants would make anyone cranky. But when his mother requests that he save his aunt’s struggling Italian deli in charming, picturesque Indigo Bay, he has no idea that he’s about to overdose on sweetness.

Luca expected his aunt’s stubbornness—she’s a Moretti, isn’t she?—and his cousin’s resistance to actual work, but the last thing he expected is the absolute ball of sunshine known as Oliver Billings.

Oliver loves Indigo Bay. Loves owning his small artisan bakery, Sweetie Pie’s. Helps nice old ladies cross the street. Even volunteers for the local Sweethearts Festival.

Sweet isn’t really Luca’s style, or so he thinks. But when he discovers Oliver can be a little spicy too, his prickly exterior begins to crumble like a well-baked crust.

If Luca isn’t careful, he’s going to develop a taste for sweets—and a particular baker’s pie.

And one or two servings will never be enough.

 

Excerpt 

“Ah, they sent the fixer out.” Oliver sounded amused again. “I can see it. You’re definitely more of a fixer than a baker.”

Luca shrugged. “I run my family’s four restaurants. They do not typically need fixing.” Don’t be arrogant, don’t be arrogant. “But Nonna’s Deli here, it is . . .an investment of ours. Not directly under my control. So I’m not here to order changes but to . . .suggest them. Nicely.”

“Which is how they’ve managed to underperform all these years,” Oliver said with another of those smirks. They shouldn’t have been so frustratingly attractive. But Luca felt them deep down, stirring him up in a way he hadn’t expected.

Oliver was definitely a very attractive package, one he’d love to unwrap.

Would he be as sweet as promised? Or a little salty too? Maybe even a bit spicy?

“You could say that,” Luca said. “Part of the proposed changes are aligning the menu more directly with our other restaurants. And that includes fresh bread, daily. Nonna’s here doesn’t have the staff, the resources, or the equipment to do this, but you do.”

“I do,” Oliver conceded. “My schedule’s already pretty packed, but I suppose I could fit you in. French bread? Sourdough bread? Focaccia? Rolls? Loaves? How many dozen per day?”

Luca liked every part of Oliver he’d seen so far. He was charming and sweet and undeniably adorable. Then there was how goddamned sexy he was when he got down to business.

“I’m not sure yet,” Luca said. “In fact, they may not need any at all. Giana and Enzo have my proposed changes, but they are not required to accept all of them—or any of them, actually.”

“You must hate that, not being able to actually impose your control over them.” Oliver said it casually, like a true control-freak business owner, like he understood.

How did Oliver know how much he hated it? Was it that obvious? Was it written all over his face that he’d love nothing more than to march down the street and tell Giana and Enzo exactly what to do?

“Yes,” Luca admitted.

“Nonna’s isn’t just an Italian affectation, is it? Was there actually a Nonna?” Oliver asked.

“My grandmother.”

“Ah, well, there you go.” Oliver leaned back, grinning. Luca wanted to chase him, but he stayed on his side of the table, with what he thought was pretty admirable restraint.

“So why does Enzo dislike you so much?” Luca asked.

“That’s a long story. And I’ve got to tend to these rolls. If they overproof . . .” Oliver shrugged. “I’m a perfectionist, what can I say?”

“If he supposedly turns against you every chance he gets, what’s he going to say,” Luca said, deploying the most persuasive smile in his arsenal, “when he finds out I want to hire you to bake our bread? I need the insider info. Need to be able to convince him it’s a good idea.”

“It’s not going to help you, and you’re not going to like it,” Oliver said. “Though, you sorta look like there’s plenty of things you don’t like.”

But I like you. “You’re not wrong.” It was hard to admit it, but there it was. He was particular, okay? Particular and more than a little arrogant about his particularity.

Maybe it was good Oliver knew that now, even if all they ever had was a date and a night—though even that was still up in the air.

“We dated,” Oliver said. His watch beeped, and he stood, just as he’d left Luca speechless for another long moment. “Well,” he amended, with a cute little shrug. “It was one date. But still. He wanted to continue. I did not. And that’s the story.”

“That wasn’t a very long story,” Luca managed, and was he trailing after Oliver in his own bakery like a lost puppy looking for his owner? Yes, he was, a little.

 

About the Author 

A lifelong Pacific Northwester, Beth Bolden has just recently moved to North Carolina with her supportive husband. Beth still believes in Keeping Portland Weird, and intends to be just as weird in Raleigh.

Beth has been writing practically since she learned the alphabet. Unfortunately, her first foray into novel writing, titled Big Bear with Sparkly Earrings, wasn’t a bestseller, but hope springs eternal. She has published over forty novels and novellas.

 

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Game Plan by Amy Aislin #giveaway

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Game Plan (Vancouver Orcas Book 1)

Author and Publisher: Amy Aislin

Cover Artist: Cate Ashwood Designs

Release Date: April 4, 2023

Genre: contemporary M/M hockey romance

Tropes: second chance, forbidden romance, hockey

Themes: second chances, forgiveness, making amends

Heat Rating: 3 flames 

Length: 72 000 words 

It is the first book in a new trilogy that’s a spin-off from Star of the Game (Stick Side 6). All three books will stand on their own and feature new couples.

It does not end on a cliffhanger.

Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Audiobook also available on Audible, Amazon, and Apple

Amazon Universal Link  |   Apple

B&N  |  Kobo  |   Smashwords

 

Coaching his new AHL team? Easy

Reconnecting with his ex…who’s also his best player’s father?

Not so much.

 

Blurb

As the new head coach of the Vancouver Orcas, Matt Shore has got his work cut out for him. Coming off a season where the Orcas came in last in the entire AHL, Matt’s job is to whip his new hockey team into shape for the oncoming season.

He doesn’t need any distractions, especially not one in the form of a tall, dark, and gorgeous antiques dealer.

Who’s also his ex—and his best player’s father.

Pierce Langley-Brown has a lot of regrets. The biggest? Leaving Matt behind two years ago when his son needed him. Now, with his son on Matt’s hockey team, there’s no avoiding the man who once owned his heart.

Not that Pierce wants to avoid him. And that heart? It still belongs to Matt.

But will Matt choose to keep it after all this time?

Content warnings: past parental death (off-page but is discussed on-page); depression and mental health

 

 

 Excerpt 

“What do you think?” Matt slowed as they approached the entrance to Kitsilano Beach Park. The parking lot was mostly empty at this time of day. “Should we park here or find street parking farther down?”

“Doesn’t matter,” Pierce muttered. “We both know I’ll only last five minutes.”

Matt grinned and pulled into the parking lot. “Not to worry. We’ll build your stamina in no time.”

Speaking of stamina . . . Matt scratched at his thigh, drawing Pierce’s gaze.

He swallowed hard. Sipped his coffee. Eyed Matt’s profile as Matt backed into a spot. “What kind of strenuous activities do you expect me to be doing that I’ll need stamina?”

Putting the car in park, Matt side-eyed him. “Increasing your stamina helps reduce fatigue. Allows you to perform your daily activities at a higher level while using less energy.”

“Uh-huh.” Amused at the non-answer, Pierce sipped more coffee, hiding a grin behind his mug. “Is that all?”

Huffing, Matt popped his door open. “Get out of the car, LB.”

Pierce let his laughter loose, feeling giddy and happy and like Matt’s laughter gave him superpowers.

Until they got a few minutes into their jog.

“I’m—” Huff. “—dying.” Huff. “Jogging is . . .” Huff.

“Good exercise?” Matt prompted, not the least bit winded.

“Torture.”

Matt chuckled, but he slowed to a fast walk. Other joggers and cyclists passed them, but Pierce didn’t care much about anything other than gulping big breaths of air. On their left, the sandy beach was dotted with wooden logs for seating, and the ocean was calm under a blue sky peppered with the occasional cloud. In the distance, the mountains rose, tall and green.

Pierce sucked in a deep breath of ocean-tinted air, held it, and released it in a long sigh.

“How did you survive in landlocked Laval for two years?” Matt asked

“Technically, it’s not landlocked. Laval is mostly on an island across the Prairies River from Montreal. It’s not the same, but there are waterfronts. I did miss home, though. It’s good to be back.”

“Yet you’d still move with Jason if he got traded again?”

Pierce blinked at Matt. “What makes you say that?”

“You sort of implied it,” Matt said, suddenly finding a hangnail interesting. “When you said you moved back here because Jason did.”

“Oh, well . . . I mean, generally, parents don’t follow their kids around, right? Especially when those kids reach adulthood?”

Matt raised an eyebrow, and if ever sardonic had an expression . . . “Yet here you are.”

“Sure, but . . .” Pierce shrugged. “I kept my apartment here for a reason, you know? Jase getting traded here was fortuitous. It gave me an excuse to return home, which gave me a reason to be close to Jason so we can keep repairing our relationship.”

“If he’d gotten traded to . . . I don’t know . . . somewhere in the States, you wouldn’t have gone with him?”

Pierce blew out a breath. “I might’ve gone with him for the first week or so, just to make sure he was settling in okay. Whether or not I would’ve moved there with him . . .” He rubbed his jaw, the overnight stubble he hadn’t bothered to shave scratching at his palm. “I honestly don’t know. I don’t spend much time mapping out what I would or wouldn’t have done in a situation that doesn’t exist.”

“But it could exist.”

Pierce stopped right there on the path, a frown pulling at his forehead. Once Matt had turned around, he said, “Are you trying to tell me something? Is Jason about to get traded? He just got here.”

Matt’s eyes were dark as sin under the autumn sun. “No. That’s not what I’m saying. I’m just . . . curious.”

Curious because . . . he didn’t want Pierce to leave again?

Because . . . he was still in love with him?

Pierce nearly laughed out loud at the fanciful thoughts.

“Curious about . . . ?”

Matt walked backwards, forcing Pierce to follow. “What your long-term plans are. I don’t even know what you do for work right now.”

“I’m a runner.”

Another sardonic eyebrow paired with an amused twist of the lips. “I beg to differ.”

“No,” Pierce said with a laugh. “Not a runner runner. A runner for an antiques dealer in Quebec.”

“Which is . . . ?”

“I buy antiques for my dealer. She tells me what she’s looking for and what her budget is, and I run around looking for it.”

“Huh.”

 

About the Author 

Amy’s lived with her head in the clouds since she first picked up a book as a child, and being fluent in two languages means she’s read a lot of books! She first picked up a pen on a rainy day in fourth grade when her class had to stay inside for recess. Tales of treasure hunts with her classmates eventually morphed into love stories between men, and she’s been writing ever since. She writes evenings and weekends—or whenever she isn’t at her full-time day job saving the planet at Canada’s largest environmental non-profit.

An unapologetic introvert, Amy reads too much and socializes too little, with no regrets. She loves connecting with readers. Join her Facebook Group to stay up-to-date on upcoming releases and for access to early teasers, find her on Instagram, or sign up for her infrequent newsletter.

 

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one signed paperback of Game Plan

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Serial Investigations Series Tour by Rhiannon D’Averc #giveaway

SERIAL INVESTIGATIONS SERIES TOUR AND NEW RELEASE

by

Rhiannon D’Averc

Book 12 is due to be released on April 16.

Series Description

If you’re a fan of extreme slow-burn friends to lovers romance, high-stakes drama mystery thrillers, or sharply witty gay men, you’ll love Serial Investigations. Jump into the action from the very beginning with Bloodless, the first book in a series you won’t dare to put down.

 Genre: M/M Crime/thriller

Trope: Slow burn friends to lovers

The stories should be read in order. Each one ends on a cliffhanger.

The stories have been updated and re-released in January 2023.

Overall Heat Rating for the series: 4 flames     

Goodreads Series Link

Amazon Series LinksAvailable in Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US  |   Amazon UK 

 

BOOK DETAILS 

BOOK 1

Book Title:  Bloodless 

Length: 73 000 words/ 250 pages

Themes: Identity struggle, murder, unrequited love, casual sex

Goodreads  |   Buy Links

 How do you solve a murder… 

… When you’re the prime suspect?

 

Blurb 

A body cut up into pieces and left in Highgate Wood. It sounds like the most exciting case that private detectives Ram and Will have had to deal with since leaving their FBI training and returning to the UK.

As each new body is piled up amongst the trees, the stakes get higher – and Serial Investigations London embraces their first real challenge.

But Ram’s rock star lifestyle – staying out all days of the week, drinking too much, and having hot gay sex with a different man every night – soon catches up with him when the police realise there’s just one link that connects the bodies.

And it’s him.

Will faces a battle around the clock to prevent his best friend from being put away for life – and while the two of them face their own demons, there’s a secret hanging over their heads that might just bring it all crashing down. And while he fights to keep it together, the one thing Will can’t bear to face is the fact that he wishes his best friend was something more.

If you’re a fan of extreme slow-burn friends to lovers romance, high-stakes drama mystery thrillers, or sharply witty gay men, you’ll love Serial Investigations. Jump into the action from the very beginning with Bloodless, the first book in a series you won’t dare to put down.

 

BOOK 2

Book Title: Blood Evidence

Length: 64 000 words/ 259 pages

Release Date: This edition January 2023

Goodreads  |   Buy Links

 A missing person’s case…

… A murder investigation?

 

Blurb 

Private detectives Ram and Will got their name in the news by catching a high-profile serial killer, and now they’re getting more clients. When they’re hired to find a missing person, all they’re worried about is having to spend a night away from home. They go to check his last known sighting in Kent, staying in a quaint country inn.

Little do they expect that Serial Investigations London are about to get thrust into a new murder investigation – one that happens right under their noses.

A confession seems to solve the case, but is it genuine? With suspicions running high, the duo still have to find time to sniff out the whereabouts of their client – and avoid getting arrested themselves.

Add Ram hitting the bottle harder than ever and Will fighting to stay in control, they might be about to lose more than just the case. And that’s all to come after they manage to get through the torturous temptation of spending a night in the same bed!

 

 

BOOK 3

Book Title: Blood Alcohol

Length: 64 500 words/ 241 pages

Release Date: This edition January 2023

Themes: Coming out, murder, inner demons, virginity

Goodreads   |   Buy Links

A horrific torture case with a ticking clock.

All he can see is the bottle.

 

Blurb 

Private detectives Ram and Will thought they’d wrapped everything up when they found Ray Riley’s body in Sevenoaks. But it turns out that things aren’t what they seemed – and Riley may be the latest victim of a torture-happy murderous duo.

For the second time, Serial Investigations London are called in to assist as civilian consultants with DI Alex Heath’s team at the Met – but they have their own personal problems getting in the way of clear thinking.

Will has something to get off his chest, and it’s related to that kiss they shared – the one they both tried to forget. But Ram can’t stop drinking to push away the confusion, and this time he’s going to land himself in more trouble than ever before.

Can they get over their issues for long enough to stop another murder – or even keep themselves alive?

 

 

BOOK 4

Book Title: Blood Sucker

Length: 235 pages

Release Date: This edition January 2023

Themes: Conflict, murder, trust and loyalty

Goodreads  |   Buy Links

 A dead body posted on social media.

A vampire stalking the streets of London?

 

Blurb 

Will and Ram’s private detective partnership seems to be unravelling. After they ended up having sex for Will’s first time, the attraction and tension between them is at an all-time high – and the unsolved Simon Shystone case is haunting them and their police contacts.

DI Alex Heath normally wants their help, but when a murderer posts images of his victim on social media, the chase is on to trace his digital footprint. With his superiors breathing down his neck, he might not be able to bring Serial Investigations London in on one of the biggest cases of their career.

They should be focusing on the artist who seems to have disappeared without a trace from his home studio. Could his latest commission have something to do with it? And will they be able to handle finding another client turned up dead?

Things are spiralling out of control for Will and Ram – and this time, they might not have each other to rely on.

If you’re a fan of extreme slow-burn friends to lovers romance, high-stakes drama mystery thrillers, or sharply witty gay men, you’ll love Serial Investigations. The story continues with Blood Sucker, a devilish tale of a man who claims to be a myth – and a disappearing act as strong as any magic.

 

BOOK 5

Book Title:  Blood Sport 

Length: 219 pages

Release Date: This edition January 2023

Themes: Murder, kidnap, vanquishing the big bad

 Goodreads   |  Buy Links

 A copycat killer who knows every detail.

A locked room with no escape.

 

Blurb 

Serial Investigations London is officially closed for business – with private detectives Will and Ram still not talking to one another after an explosive argument. Even when a copycat killer springs up, seemingly targeting only their own cases, they can’t see eye to eye.

Little wonder, given that they both have something more important on their minds. Someone knows about San Francisco – about the man who died on a rooftop at their feet. Who has discovered their deepest secret? And what will they do to keep it buried?

That’s when another mystery piles up on top of the rest: a traditional trope that every seasoned detective must face, the locked room. But this one has a deadly twist, and if they don’t come to terms with their differences and work together, one of them might not live to regret it.

Will and Ram face the most pressing and personal danger yet – but the question is, who’s behind it? And will they realise they’ve been set against one another before it’s too late? Or can they admit their love for one another and use it to become stronger than ever?

If you’re a fan of extreme slow-burn friends to lovers romance, high-stakes drama mystery thrillers, or sharply witty gay men, you’ll love Serial Investigations. The story continues with Blood Sport, a nail-biting series of twists and turns that will have you questioning how they’ll ever survive.

 

BOOK 6

Book Title:  Blood Diamond

Length: 223 pages

Release Date: This edition January 2023

Themes: Family relationships, shyness and outness

Goodreads  |   Buy Links

 Was it a thief…

… Or his family?

 

Blurb 

When a private client asks Ram and Will to track down a stolen yellow diamond, they quickly realise the suspects may be closer to home than he expects. Two adult children with serious issues, a jilted wife, and a young lover – and that’s just the beginning.

As what should be a straightforward case turns into a murder investigation, Serial Investigations London have to team up with their old friend Alex Heath – and an old enemy…

With Will in recovery and Ram staying on the wagon, everything seems to be looking up in their personal lives. They’ve even finally managed to admit their feelings for each other and turn casual sex into a real relationship, but that doesn’t mean the road ahead is without rocks. Will’s shyness around their relationship may just turn into the hurdle they fail at, with Ram feeling unwanted and pushed aside.

After an uncomfortable confrontation for Will, and with calls from their families becoming harder to ignore, the boys are going to need to work harder than ever to ignore their own issues if they want to get to the bottom of this crime – in which nothing is as straightforward as it seems.

If you’re a fan of hot gay romance, high-stakes drama mystery thrillers, or sharply witty Londoners, you’ll love Serial Investigations. Start a new chapter with the boys in Blood Diamond, a mystery with a sharp and bloody twist.

 

BOOK 7

Book Title:  Blood Pressure

Length: 232 pages

Release Date: This edition January 2023

Tropes: new relationship/closeted relationship, unwillingly outed

Themes: Family relationships, domestic abuse, claustrophobia/trauma, locked room murder mystery

Goodreads  |  Buy Links

A victim locked in a closet.

A detective trying to get out.

 

Blurb 

Ram has spotted his dream locked room mystery case on the news – and he’ll stop at nothing to get himself involved with it. The problem is, newly-minted DCI Alex Heath isn’t too happy about it – and neither is his successor as DI…

An invitation to go home and visit family should be a happy occasion, but for Will, it’s quite the opposite. Spiralling into doubt and fear about Ram outing him to his parents, Will risks pushing his boyfriend away entirely. And when he does go home, things aren’t going to be plain sailing. Will’s father is an ex-Ambassador, and he’s got many years of finding out secrets behind him.

As both are rocked by revelations about Will’s past and his present, Ram and Will have to contend with doubting policemen, ugly habits rearing their heads, and the struggle to trust one another. And there’s the question of how Harry got that black eye…

If you’re a fan of hot gay romance, high-stakes drama mystery thrillers, or sharply witty Londoners, you’ll love Serial Investigations. Try to keep your cool in Blood Pressure, a mystery with lashings of anxiety and an ending that might just blow a family apart.

 

BOOK 8

Book Title:  Blood Sacrifice

Length: 209 pages

Release Date: This edition January 2023

Themes: Trust, ritual murder, hidden identities, romantic vacation

Goodreads  |  Buy Links

A romantic trip to Paris…

… A dead body at a famous landmark.

Blurb 

A romantic trip to Paris for Ram’s birthday was never going to go smoothly. It should have been a week of sex and sightseeing, but fate has other plans. From the second he spots a police presence while exploring a monument and learns there’s been a murder, he’s chomping at the bit to get involved – and when he’s recognised by a fan, he gets his chance.

With Will sucked into the investigation as well, this should a chance for them to enjoy an international reputation and solve a case for the Paris police. But as more bodies appear and the case gets more complicated, their unfamiliar surroundings could turn around and bite them.

Locked out of their hotel, with their cash stolen and an unfriendly police force shutting them out, Ram and Will might just come up against their biggest opponent yet. Are they embroiled in a conspiracy that could overtake them entirely – or are the shadows in the corners of Notre-Dame really just shadows?

If you’re a fan of hot gay romance, high-stakes drama mystery thrillers, or sharply witty Londoners, you’ll love Serial Investigations. Try to stay alive in Blood Sacrifice, a mystery set in the city of love – where red is now the colour of blood, not romance.

 

BOOK 9

Book Title:  Blood Magic

Length: 242 pages

Release Date: This edition January 2023

Themes: Occult/psychic abilities, secret society, family relationships, trans struggles

Goodreads  |  Buy Links

A psychic prediction of death…

… That ends up coming true.

 

Blurb 

Ram and Will aren’t exactly believers in the occult. When a medium comes to them and claims to have heard rumours of death from the other side, they laugh her out of the door. But when her prediction comes true, they have to consider that something more serious might be going on here.

A missing person case turns out to be more complex than they could have imagined, and with the lines between life and death becoming blurred, they both have to confront their own feelings about what happened to them in Paris. The fears, the doubts, and the worry for Capitaine Varon haven’t gone away – and every hint of danger is enough to make Ram want to wrap Will in unwanted cotton wool. That doesn’t help when they’re sucked deep into the turmoil of national politics, and the seedy underbelly of big business.

With a trip home for Christmas impending, and the invitation to the mysterious Black Dragon still looming, Ram has a lot on his mind. But with Harry and Alex both having their own reasons for staying quiet, Will has to find a way to keep him steady on his own. What’s awaiting them will make them wonder – and rattle some of their core beliefs to their foundation.

If you’re a fan of hot gay romance, high-stakes drama mystery thrillers, or sharply witty Londoners, you’ll love Serial Investigations. Search for the truth in Blood Magic, a tale of death and corruption that will raise the hairs on the back of your neck.

 

BOOK 10

Book Title:  Blood Trail

Length:  232 pages

Release Date: This edition January 2023

Themes: Gaslighting, serial killer, trust, red herrings

Goodreads  |   Buy Links

A cold case heating up…

… A secret coming out.

 

Blurb 

Ram and Will have a secret, and only three people in the world know it. The two of them, and JM Coil. So, with Ram seeing Coil – who must still be in prison – at every turn, and the FBI turning up to investigate a cold case, it feels like it’s only a matter of time before their secret is out.

The Thames Valley Stalker is Will’s pet serial killer, and now it seems like he might be active again – both at home and overseas. What should be a dream case turns into a nightmare as he realises his very involvement puts Serial Investigations London at risk of everything being found out at last.

Alex is still on bereavement leave, right when they need a friend at the Met the most. They’ll have to put up with assistance from a very unlikely source instead – someone who is supposed to be dead, turning up like a ghost on their doorstep. And with one more secret to try to keep from the FBI, it’s not long before Ram is eyeing the bottle again like it might be the answer to all of his problems.

The question is, can he stay on the wagon, keep his cool, and help solve the case? Or will the serial killer of the century finally be the undoing of the private detectives who have weathered every storm until now?

And what will happen when they take their suspicions into their own hands and confront their suspect in the flesh?

If you’re a fan of hot gay romance, high-stakes drama mystery thrillers, or sharply witty Londoners, you’ll love Serial Investigations. Fight for justice in Blood Trail, a twisting tale of clues, suspects, fake deaths, and new leads that will have you reaching for the red string.

 

BOOK 11

Book Title:  Blood Work

Length: 240 pages

Genre/s: M/M Crime/thriller

Themes: Gaslighting, serial killer, trust, hidden domestic abuse, forced proximity

Goodreads  |  Buy Links

Two friends in danger…

… Two cases to solve.

 

Blurb 

Getting arrested on suspicion of killing the latest victim of the Thames Valley Stalker seemed like it might be a big deal. But that’s the least of Will and Ram’s worries when a bad week turns even worse.

Capitaine Varon saved their lives in Paris, and all they want is to do the same. But with the French policeman determined to get out of their tiny apartment, and the FBI now aware of his existence, it’s starting to feel impossible. Keeping him alive might be more than they can handle, with limited resources at their disposal and threats coming from every direction.

Harry’s excuses are starting to wear thin when he turns up covered in bruises yet again, and Will’s determined to find out who his elusive, controlling boyfriend really is. But when Harry pretends everything is fine, how can Will make him see he’s in danger? And will his warning come too late?

As if being pulled in two different directions wasn’t enough, the private detectives soon find themselves pulled in four. Running under all of their worries for their friends are two cases – one concerning the Thames Valley Stalker and one connected to the Black Dragon. Both of these cases are more than just jobs – they’re personal.

Can they save Varon and Harry before it’s too late? Can they catch the Thames Valley Stalker – or convince the FBI to do it – when the suspicion is falling on their own heads? Can they solve the murder of a prominent Black Dragon member without falling into a trap set by JM Coil himself?

And, most of all, can they handle all of this pressure without falling off the wagon?

If you’re a fan of hot gay romance, high-stakes drama mystery thrillers, or sharply witty Londoners, you’ll love Serial Investigations. Race against time to get all the answers in Blood Work, a tension-driven tale that will leave you not knowing which way to turn.

 

BOOK 12

Book Title:  Blood Pumping

Length: 228 pages

Release Date: April 16, 2023

Tropes: sexy bet, shy power bottom

Themes: Lockdown, anxiety, alcoholism

Pre-Order/Buy Links

One hot bet…

… Three cases to lose.

 

Blurb 

Two months of lockdown, and already Ram and Will are tired to death of it all. The same four walls. Seeing the city, but not being able to go out into it. The only diversions available either tire Will out or leave Ram unsated.

The solution?

A hot bet from Will that convinces Ram to take on a new case – one that they have to solve remotely.

Then Alex calls with another one.

And then the FBI want to speak to them about Kit Anderson.

The tension is piling up, so Will surprises even himself when he gets hot enough under the collar to pull Ram into the bedroom and take control. But with Harry still locked down with his abusive boyfriend, a video meeting with Coil on the cards, and a lot of awkward questions from international law enforcement, it might just take everything Will can pull out of the bag to win that bet.

But that doesn’t mean he’s not going to try.

If you’re a fan of hot gay romance, high-stakes drama mystery thrillers, or sharply witty Londoners, you’ll love Serial Investigations. Resist the urge to spiral in Blood Pumping, a lockdown mystery that will leave you poring over maps and going down rabbit holes.

 

Excerpt from Bloodless

Hiro stirs as I drag my jeans up over my thighs, and I groan inwardly. He’s awake. I wasn’t supposed to wake him. I was trying to get out of here clean.

“Where are you going?” he asks, a sleepy voice that would almost sound cute if you were into that kind of thing. 

“Home,” I tell him. I could lie or whatever, but I’m tired. This is why I usually just sneak out. I’m not good at coming up with believable excuses.

“It’s the middle of the night,” he says, sitting up slightly to squint at me.

“Night Tube,” I tell him with a shrug. Yes, thank fuck once again for the Night Tube.

“I’ve got something else you could ride,” he says, waggling his eyebrows. 

I stare at him for a minute, cocking my head.

“Alright,” he says, as if conceding a point. He ducks his head just a little, down onto his own arm. “I’ll ride you. I guess that’s the only way you like it.”

I’m about to leave, but I look at him there with his head dropped down, looking up at me through faux-shy eyelashes. He has that sleek, black hair that most Asians have, falling just into those eyes. In the dim light like this, he could be from somewhere else. China. Or Korea, even.

Not that that makes a difference.

But I find I’m palming myself lightly through my underwear instead of doing up my jeans, and the thought of fucking Hiro again before I leave does have a nice ring to it. “I don’t know,” I say anyway, wanting to tease him, wanting him to beg me for it. “I think I need a little more convincing.”

Hiro fixes me with a naughty look that I can make out even in the dimness of the room, his eyes practically sparkling. He doesn’t need asking twice. He practically springs up and towards me, landing on his knees in front of me.

“You don’t need these,” he says, nosing at my boxer briefs for a moment before using his teeth to pull them down. Once they’re far enough for my already hard dick to spring loose again, he stops and puts his mouth to better use, closing it over my head immediately.

I groan, throwing my head back to the ceiling. I grip onto his hair, silky under my fingers. He feels good – warm and wet, his tongue flicking over my head on each stroke like he’s some kind of fucking clarinet player. With my eyes closed and that hair in my hand I can almost believe he’s – 

Fuck. I should not be thinking about my straight roommate and best friend while getting off. For one thing, it’s pointless. And it’s not like I’m drowning in rejections over here. I can get any hole I fucking click my fingers at. 

“I want to fuck you,” I growl at Hiro, pulling him back from my dick by his hair. It leaves his mouth with a sucking pop, sending a shudder down my spine.

“Yes,” he murmurs, both an agreement and a cheer, and he climbs up on the bed in front of me on all fours. Ready. He reaches back to play with his own hole, moaning lightly, while I slip a new condom on. He’s still fucking open from last time. He probably gets a lot of good results from other guys playing the slut like that, but for me, it’s less of a turn-on. I get so much dick, I would kind of prefer it sometimes if someone actually made it a challenge for me.

I line myself up behind him and push forward, feeling how his ring sucks me inside. He groans long and low, the same way he did earlier. I’m close enough already and I don’t see much point in dragging this out. I do want to get home. I let go, pumping into him hard and fast for a few long moments before I feel my balls draw up. I come with a shout, pumping inside him for the last few bursts of pleasure, milking everything out of it. 

“Ohhh, yes,” Hiro says, pulling himself off me and turning to look, on his knees still. He’s still hard. I guess he didn’t come. Sort of sounds like his problem, not mine.

“Alright,” I say, tucking myself back into my jeans and continuing to dress. “Now I really have to go.”

“But, baby,” he pouts. He tugs himself a few times, keeping himself going. “We’re not done.”

“One ride and I’m going,” I remind him. “That was the deal.” I shrug my shirt on over my head and grab my leather jacket. “Sorry, mate.”

I don’t call him baby. For some reason, it makes my stomach turn. 

Maybe I just know that I would like myself even less if I pretended I really liked these men and got their hopes up that way. 

I sweep out of his home and back onto the road, heading for the Tube with the precision of a sniffer dog, well-trained at seeking them out. A cold walk and Tube ride home, and I might get a few hours sleep in my own bed. 

 

 

About the Author 

Rhiannon D’Averc is a romance, crime, and young adult fiction author based in the UK. She also writes true crime.

Trademarks of her work include dystopian fiction, LGTBQ+ themes, and explorations of the horror genre alongside experimental short story formulas, with a lick of wry humour.

She is available as a ghostwriter, for live readings, speaking engagements, and workshops on any and all topics to do with writing and publishing. As of January 2023, Rhiannon has had 85 books published under her own name and under others.

Rhiannon lives in East Sussex with her husband and son and is probably squirrelled away as you read this in her home office, hunched over a keyboard and trying to resist the temptation to stop working and start crafting.

  

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Starboard by Ava Olsen #kindleunlimited #giveaway

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Book Title: Starboard (Voyagers Book 2)

Author and Publisher: Ava Olsen

Cover Artist: Angela Haddon

Release Date: March 21, 2023

Genre: Contemporary M/M Romance

Tropes: friends to lovers, hurt/comfort, collaborators to lovers, close proximity, second chances, bisexual rep

Themes: coming out – bisexual rep, second chances, redemption

Heat Rating:  4 flames

Length: 262 pages

It is a standalone story and does not end on a cliffhanger.

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Dylan Aylmer is a Hollywood actor struggling to make a comeback.

Falling in love with his ghostwriter wasn’t part of the script.

 

Blurb

Dylan: I’ve lived my adult life under the Hollywood spotlight, but no one really sees who I am. I’ve gone down the dark path of drinking my anxiety away, along with my career, but now I’m searching for the light again. My struggle to stay sober has me releasing long held secrets. 

 A contract to publish my autobiography means laying everything in the open. When I meet Max, my ghostwriter, I’m not sure how our collaboration is going to work. He’s a university professor from New York with more degrees than I can count and I’m a guy from West Texas that barely finished college. And he may be my ghostwriter, but Max is anything but invisible. 

 Intimate confessions lead to heightened emotions and an unexpected love that fills up all my empty places. I don’t know what the future holds, but I want Max to be a part of it. 

I’m done hiding in plain sight. It’s time for this star to finally shine. 

Max: I’m an established university professor and a celebrity ghostwriter. Why ghostwriting? Because it pays. And I need the money. My ex-husband likes to threaten me with legal battles over custody of our daughter and while he has family reserves, I don’t. 

 So I take a summer ghostwriting contract, a celebrity tell-all. I expect to meet another self-absorbed actor, but Dylan Aylmer doesn’t fit any pre-conceived mold. His eyes are so haunted that I can’t look away and now I’m curious to unlock all his secrets.

What I find is not only a man trying to mend his broken soul but a beautiful person that is so much more than outward appearances. I swore I’d never be vulnerable to heartache again, but Dylan has me breaking all my steadfast rules. 

 Am I chasing a shooting star, soon to be gone, or is our love the kind that shines forever?

 

Excerpt 

“My part in this book deal is supposed to be kept confidential. There’s a reason it’s called ghostwriting. I hope to hell that reporter didn’t get my photo.”

The worst-case scenarios ran through my mind, but I forced myself to remain calm. We arrived at the gate and after we provided our ID, we were escorted to a private waiting area. At least in this section, there were two security staff on standby. Neither of us were in the mood for small talk and sat quietly until Warren entered the room a few minutes later.

“I had security escort that guy out of the airport. It’s all under control.”

“Are you sure about that? Did he get any photos?” I asked, concerned that my anonymity was no more.

“He didn’t, Max. And we’ve done our best to ensure your name is kept out of the press. That’s part of the reason why you’re working on a yacht in the middle of the Mediterranean instead of downtown New York. But Dylan is still a celebrity, and he gets attention, and yes there is always the possibility of news leaking. You’ve done this kind of work before, so why the concern now?”

“Usually everything is done virtually.”

“The in-person request was my idea,” Dylan replied. “Mainly because of the timing with my film and for other privacy reasons.”

“I agreed to the contract. It’s just that I have a thirteen-year-old daughter.” I ran an agitated hand through my hair. “You see where I’m going with this.”

“I do, but again, there’s no reason to be worried,” Warren replied. “It was one reporter and he got nothing.”

“If my ex-husband sees my name or my daughter’s in the tabloid news, he’ll flip out.”

“Husband?” Dylan asked with a raised brow.

“Ex. Is there a problem?” I said, turning in my seat to face him. Dylan better not have any issue with my sexuality, or I would walk out of the airport right now, contract be damned. 

“Nope,” he shook his head and smirked at me. “Just nosy.”

I let out a surprised laugh, despite my growing anxiety. 

“An honest answer from someone in show biz.” I placed my hand on my chest. “I’m honored.” 

Dylan’s smirk faded as quick as it came, and I could sense the shift in his mood. “I can tell that you really don’t want to do this, and I won’t blame you if you want to back out. You have priorities you need to consider.” 

The look of resignation on Dylan’s face touched something in me. That was highly unusual. My ex often accused me of being unfeeling because I didn’t let my emotions get involved in certain decisions, and maybe he was right. I tended to be more rational and analytical. So why this man, a stranger, should spark my empathy was beyond my comprehension. 

“I’m going to hit the head before we board. Thanks for seeing us off, Warren.” Dylan shook his hand and walked away, leaving a vacuum of sorts. Like he’d taken all the oxygen along with him. 

Warren motioned to the exit. “Time for me to get going. And stop worrying, Max. Focus on the book. That’s the priority.” He paused and shook his head. “Look, I won’t bullshit you. There’ve been many times when I wanted to kick Dylan’s reckless butt to the curb. But he’s worked hard for a fresh start. He’s got a new movie role. And the book. I want to ensure both succeed, and Dylan along with it.”

“I’ll do my best,” I responded as Warren nodded and walked away.

Part of me wished I’d never have to work with Dylan, but the bigger part of me called me a liar. I didn’t even know the man and yet I was intensely curious about him, and that right there made the writer in me stand at attention. There was more to Dylan Aylmer than a model pretty face and a salacious past. 

It was those sad, hypnotic eyes. He’d cast a strange kind of spell on me, and I was determined to find out why.

 

 

About the Author 

Ava Olsen writes steamy and dreamy contemporary romances filled with heartwarming characters, cheeky banter and swoony moments. 

 

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Cover Reveal – Fauxmance in the Falls by J.E. Birk 

COVER REVEAL

Book Title: Fauxmance in the Falls 

Author: J.E. Birk 

Publisher: Maple Mountains Press

Cover Artist: Cate Ashwood 

Release Date: April 20, 2023 

Genres: Contemporary M/M Romance, small town romance 

Tropes: Fake relationship, small town, age gap, alpha doctor, grumpy/sunshine

Themes: Redemption, coming out, found families 

Heat Rating:  4 flames 

Length:  Approx. 92 000 words and 331 pages

It’s the first book in the series and does not end on a cliffhanger.

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Never date your dream doctor

 

Blurb

I’m here to destroy this town. How did I end up in a fake relationship with its hero?

I’ve spent my life proving to my grandpa and dad that I’m more than just the Lewis family mistake. So when Grandpa sends me to Devon Falls, VT to take some ridiculous leaf festival to court, I head straight there and get to work. 

But Dr. Jack Lancer keeps getting in my way.

 He’s everywhere. Helping me out with my migraines, making me dinner, insisting people be nice to me even though I’m the enemy. Who is this guy? The next thing I know I’m pretending to be Jack’s boyfriend to get him out of a bind. I swear he’s putting kindness pills in my food or something.

Jack thinks he can fix me the same way he fixes everyone else. But I’m not broken. This podunk town will be when I’m done with it, though. And Jack? Well, he’s about to learn the meaning of the term “collateral damage.” Because I’ll do anything to win this case and end this festival. 

Even if it means losing something that feels an awful lot like love.

Fauxmance in the Falls is an age-gap romance featuring a small town full of quirks, a grumpy lawyer and a charming physician, a fake relationship gone wild, some inappropriate use of a doctor’s office, and a healthy mix of humor and angst. It stars Benson Lewis, who first appeared in the book Counterpoint.  

 

About the Author 

J.E. Birk was raised in Vermont and is now adulting in Colorado with intermittent success. She is a long-time lover of stories, and she writes and reads in worlds where imperfect characters find their happily ever after. Snag free bonus content and stay up-to-date on J.E. Birk’s news and releases by signing up for her newsletter

 

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Worth the Fight by Denver Shaw #kindleunlimited #giveaway

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Worth the Fight

Author and Publisher: Denver Shaw

Cover Artist: Steamy Designs

Release Date: March 21, 2023

Genre: Contemporary M/M Romance

Tropes: Opposites attract, sports romance/MMA romance, grumpy/sunshine, multicultural characters, found family

Themes: Protect who you love

Heat Rating: 4 flames 

Length:  56 600 words      

It is a standalone story and does not end on a cliffhanger.

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A bad boy who lives outside the law. A compassionate soul focused on helping others. Sometimes rules are meant to be broken… for love.

Blurb

Caden
Helping my brother was my focus. He got into trouble and I’ve been using my skills in the ring to prevent loan sharks from breaking his kneecaps… or worse.
Until I met Noah.
He’s a good man who makes me want to be better. A man who doesn’t lace up his gloves and step into underground rings. But I have one last fight coming. This time the stakes are higher than ever. What I have to do to save my brother could cost me the man I’m falling for.

Noah
I should have walked away and never looked back when I first met the MMA fighter with honey-gold eyes. Yet Caden’s charms are too appealing to ignore. As a social worker it’s important for me to keep my nose clean.
And Caden is a red flag in every way.
Still, he’s hot as sin and I can’t seem to stay away. I’m taking a risk by opening myself up to him, but I’m convinced beneath that bad boy exterior beats the heart of a good man who is worth the fight.

 

Excerpt 

I texted Austin that I was here and that he needed to get his skinny butt to the entrance.

I got back what looked like a seat assignment from him, but this place was a maze. There was a man nearby who looked like he knew his way around, or was someone that worked here. Even if he didn’t, he might know where the seats were. But my breath caught in my throat as I surveyed him: black pants, white shirt; tall, muscled; short, blackberry-colored hair and honey-gold eyes. On their own, his features were possessed by dozens, perhaps hundreds of other men, but there was a certain something about this particular man. He exuded an easy confidence, a sex appeal that drew me in. It had been years since I’d been in a serious relationship, months since I’d had sex, and looking at this guy made me seriously think, albeit fleetingly, that maybe I should put myself back out there and at least consider dating again.

I shook myself from the temporary brain paralysis the man had reduced me to. 

“Pardon me, sir,” I said, “I haven’t been here in a long time; I’m trying to figure out where seat F3J is. Do you have any idea?”

He smiled down at me. I felt the caress of his gaze roaming over me, but not lingering too long in one spot, which took him out of the ‘creep’ category and put him into the ‘typical male’ category that he probably couldn’t help being in anyway. Not to put too fine a point on it, but I did have on my burgundy suit, which perfectly molded to my body.

Was he gay, or at least bisexual?

“F3J,” he repeated, smirking about something. “F3J…well, I might be able to help you hunt it down. Are you…here with someone?”

“I am,” I said. “Young guy, skinny, mixed.”

“Anything serious?” the man asked, casually—too casually.

I laughed. “Um…no, he’s my nephew.”

“Oh!” He wiped imaginary sweat off his forehead. “I see. That’s good.”

“Is it, now?”

“Well, see,” he said, “I figured there was no way I was lucky enough to meet a single guy in a place like this. I mean, what are the chances a man like you is unattached?”

Well, he answered my question. He was definitely gay or bisexual.

I pursed my lips and gave him the look I gave the kids that tried to bullshit me at work. “Oh, you’re a little slick. What, just because I’m here without a guy, I must be unattached?”

He shrugged. “Are you?”

“Here without a guy?”

“No, unattached.”

I made him wait a second. “Maybe I am.”

“Here’s the thing,” he said, leaning in a little bit. He smelled like a minty aftershave and sweat, the clean sweat of a man straight after a workout. “I figured any man who was with you wouldn’t stay behind if you left the house looking like that. I know I wouldn’t.”

“What, so he’d own me?” I wanted to be righteously angry, but it was hard. Those eyes…

“No,” the man said. “But he’d never miss a chance to be with you. I think you’d probably own him.”

“Oh, okay. Okay.” I nodded slowly, smiling now. “You’re slick and smooth at the same time. Listen, can you help me find my seat or not?”

“Is that an interview question?”

“I’m not taking applications.”

“Give me your phone number, and I’ll take you straight there.” He winked at me.

I almost did. It was fun, and it had been a long, long time since I’d been flirted with by anybody that wasn’t an inappropriately forward client. That happened plenty. This, though, was a bona fide stranger who didn’t know me from Adam, and seemed like he thought I was looking cute.

But, let’s be honest here; the little fantasy I had a few moments ago about putting myself out there was just that, a fantasy. I ate takeout every night for dinner. I ate most of my lunches at the office. I had heard about days off, and I vaguely remembered having them…or maybe I only dreamed about that once. That stack of case files on my desk? It hung around the back of my head like it had astral projected itself to follow me around the world outside my office.

It was a nice thought, but no, sir; the next date I had time to go on would be the one day off I would get between the day my office burned down and the day they relocated me to another one and printed out all my files again—thank God for the cloud.

“It’s not that easy,” I said with my own wink. “But good try. You’ve got real skills. I applaud your smoothness.” I stepped away from him. “I’ve got no time for guys who hit on guys for sport.”

He feigned a wound to the chest, but he was still smiling. “Fair enough,” he said. “I’ll keep that in mind, then. I’ll at least give you a hint, though.” He pointed toward the ring. “F stands for ‘floor’—your seat’s near the ring. Enjoy the fight!”

Yeah, I felt a little bad about being so hard on him, but you’ve got to shut all that down hard if you’re gonna shut it down at all. A man like that, yeah, okay, probably he’d be good for a short-term thing. I could admit that. All that muscle and sweat…

 

About the Author

Denver Shaw is a girl who enjoys the simple things in life: the first sip of coffee in the morning, the changing colors of sunset, and clothes fresh out of the dryer- although she doesn’t enjoy folding them. When she isn’t reading romance stories, she spends her time plotting and writing them.

 

 

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Love Among the Stars by Claerie Kavanaugh #giveaway

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Love Among the Stars (Entertaining Love, Book 1)

Author: Claerie Kavanaugh 

Publisher: Half Caff Press 

Cover Artist: Cath Grace Designs 

Release Date: March 19, 2023 

Genre: Contemporary F/F Romance

Tropes:  Matchmaker, Celebrity 

Themes: Coming out

Heat Rating:  3 flames

Length: 40 000 words/ 250 pages

It is a standalone story and does not end on a cliffhanger.

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Hollywood’s best matchmaker may have finally met her match.

 

Blurb 

Genevieve “Eve” Davis is Hollywood’s best, most sought-after matchmaker. Just about everyone in the City of Angels owes her for their happily ever afters. She’s been in the business for ten years and has never made a false move. The only person she hasn’t been able to hit with Cupid’s arrow? Herself.

Then Jemma, Hollywood’s most recent “it” girl, appears on her doorstep. But rather than having an extra bounce in her step, she looks like a dog just crapped all over her brand-new designer boots. The date Eve set up for her was anything but a fairy tale beginning. In fact, it was a downright disaster. The first bad review Eve has ever had. If she can’t fix this, her perfect reputation will be torn to shreds.

Even worse, the deeper she digs for that secret ingredient that will help her find Jemma’s perfect match, the harder she falls.

Book one in the standalone sapphic celebrity romance series ENTERTAINING LOVE

 

 

Excerpt

When I finally drag myself home, it’s nearly 1:00 AM. I’m asleep on my feet, but the Sandman won’t claim me no matter how hard I try. That stupid reporter’s grilling session keeps repeatedly playing in my mind. Could I have said something better? Different? More… Relatable? 

Even as I lay here, I can’t help laughing. I sound ridiculous, so saying it out loud would make it worse. Right? After two hours of tossing and turning, I finally give up, kick the covers off, and wander into my living room.

I paddle across the hardwood floor—it’s so much easier to clean up all the cat hair without any carpet getting in the way—and plop on my fluffiest white sectional littered with cowgirl-themed throw pillows. I grab my favorite one. The one with Montana’s state flower on it–the Bitterroot, a beautiful purple blossom that looks like an orchids

I pick up one of the controllers, turn on the flatscreen and toy with a few buttons, but ultimately, it ends up back on the coffee table. I don’t have enough energy to play another level of Black Ops, so I flip on a random TV channel instead. Kiki hops up beside me, and I run my fingers over the underside of her chin– her favorite spot– as the television lands on yet another red carpet. Of course, it does. I know this is Hollywood, but what are the odds that I can’t escape the press even in my apartment? My parents had warned me before I moved out here, but I didn’t fully believe them until now. They do have eyes everywhere.

Sighing, I pick up the remote again–maybe there’s something good on HBO-but, as usual, Kiki’s timing is impeccable. She headbutts the control right out of my grip just as the next guest steps into the frame.

“Welcome back to the premiere of Crazy About Cupid.” The reporter waves his microphone in the air as if he’s twirling a baton, and I can’t stifle a snort. “Now that you’ve met the stars let me introduce you to the woman who started it all. I’m here with Genevieve Davis, owner and mastermind behind the world-renowned matchmaking company Matches Ever After. Genevieve, it’s so nice to see you again.”

The camera pans over slightly, and my heart skips a beat. The woman can’t be much older than me. Thirty at most. She has long, wavy brown hair, complemented by piercing green eyes. Her skin is pale and smooth, with a few freckles scattered across the bridge of her nose. A dimple is barely visible on her left cheek when she smiles. Even standing an entire foot shorter than the reporter towering over her, she somehow commands the entire carpet’s attention. The back of the dress is just as stunning with a low scoop that dips almost to the small of her back and hugs every single part of her deliciously curved figure in just the right place. When she turns to face the camera more fully, I barely see a tiny scar on her left cheek above her jawline. 

Kiki purrs softly, and the remote slips from my grip, landing on the cushions with a thump.

“Nice to see you too, Seth. And how many times do I have to tell you? Call me Eve; Genevieve was my mother.”

They laugh, and I settle back against the pillows as my palms grow clammy. Even her voice sounds sexy. 

“Sorry, Eve,” Seth waves a hand and tries to smirk at the camera as he corrected himself. I guess I’m just so excited. Rumor has it that you’re the reason we’re even here tonight?”

Eve giggles and playfully swats his arm. ” Oh, I’m not sure I would go that far.” She adjusts the silk shawl draped over her shoulders. ” I may have introduced Cole and Phoenix, but they put in the real work to make the relationship last, and they were the ones who allowed their story to be made into a movie.”

Seth grins. “Of course, but one could argue that their story wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for you. How long have you been in the matchmaking business?”

Eve chuckles. “Seth, are you trying to make me discuss my age?”

The reporter feigns a gasp. “Who me? Never!”

Eve narrowed her eyes. “Sure, sure. Honestly, though I’ve been in the matchmaking game for as long as I can remember, even back in college, I loved setting up my friends whenever I could. I’ve always been a firm believer in the idea that everyone deserves their happily ever after. Even and especially Hollywood starlets. Love is hard to find in a business like this, and I will do anything I can do to help.”

Seth nods along. “So true. What’s most incredible, though, is that my sources tell me you’ve never once made a bad match?”

Eve shrugs, but I can tell by the mischievous gleam in her eye that she’s proud of that statistic. Hell, I would be, too. “So far, so good.”

Seth whistled. “Well, you heard it here first, folks. If you live in the Los Angeles area and are looking for love, what better time to try Eve’s services? Go to her website at http://www.matcheseverafter.com, answer simple questions, and let the sparks fly.”

With that, he moves on to the next guest, but my mind remains stuck on that address. A matchmaker who had never made one bad move? My mom always used to say if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. A statistic like that fits that bill. Still, is there any harm in trying?

As if on cue, Kiki promptly climbs off my lap, allowing me to grab my laptop. When I return and type in the address, Kiki leans over her shoulder and gently nudges my cheek.

“What is it, girl? Do you think this is crazy too?”

Kiki shakes her head, and her little collar jingles around her neck. I laugh. “At least somebody believes in me.”

For the first couple of questions, I’m oddly nervous. Why is anybody’s guess. It’s not like I’m staring at an actual person who will judge me. Computer forms don’t have feelings. Nonetheless, I take my time thinking out strategic and honest answers, and by the time I finally hit send, it’s nearly 5:00 AM.

Eventually, I fall into a fitful sleep, dreaming of baby cupids dancing around my head. Maybe love won’t be so hard to find in Hollywood after all. If I have the right help.

 

About the Author 

Claerie Kavanaugh has spent most of her life telling stories, but she never imagined herself writing romance. In fact, she used to think it should only be reserved for Hallmark movies. It wasn’t until college, when she discovered fanfiction, that she learned what romance was truly about: not just fluffy relationships and happily ever afters, but human connection, the desire to push one another to be better, and create hope that somewhere, somehow, everyone has someone.

When she’s not writing, she loves to travel and explore new cultures, helping other authors polish their works as a freelance editor, and singing while doing so. Broadway musicals are her soul-food, something her mother and sister know well. She constantly blasts the newest soundtrack through the halls of their Missouri home, much to the chagrin of her very sassy and spoiled cat.

 

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Death (The Four Horsemen Book 4) by Sienna Moreau #giveaway

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Death (The Four Horsemen Book 4)

Author and Publisher: Sienna Moreau

Cover Artist: Reese Dante

Release Date: March 15, 2023

Genre: Dark MM paranormal romance

Tropes: Unrequited hate, Demon/Horseman of the Apocalypse, hurt/comfort, possessiveness 

Heat Rating: 4-5 flames

Length: 112 000 words

The books must be read in order. The first three books need to be read to understand this story. The series concludes in this book.

This book does not end on a cliffhanger. It is a HEA.

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It all began with the kiss of Death.

 

Blurb

Abaddon, the Destroyer, right hand of Lucifer, has returned from the dead with one thing on his mind: revenge on the Horseman who kept him from taking back what is his. But spending time alone with Death has awakened something between them, resulting in an experience that he enjoys more than revenge. The natural conclusion is to keep doing it, of course. He never planned on his heart getting involved with a Horseman he can’t even touch.

Death is the fourth Horseman of the Apocalypse, arriving only when the end is near. The Apocalypse he and his brothers were summoned for this time is over, lost when they lost one of their own, but the stakes are higher now than ever before. It isn’t just Earth that’s at risk; the fate of existence now hangs in the balance, with a power-hungry God ready to unleash a new world order.

Death cannot touch another and has resigned himself to spending his existence alone, until a kiss changes everything for him. When Abaddon returns, and they pick up right where they left off, Death doesn’t fight the attraction that spirals out of control faster than they can keep up with it. Death cannot feel Abaddon’s skin against his own, but Abaddon breaks so beautifully under him anyway, taking everything that he can give and asking for more.

Abaddon had never imagined that he would love anyone or fall so hard, so fast. Death had never imagined that he would find someone to walk beside him, someone to call his own. Time is running out for them, and if they don’t find a way to push back against the powers vying for them, all will be lost.

The last Apocalypse is coming, and no one is safe.

Death is the fourth and final book in the Four Horsemen series, filled with snark and morally questionable characters. This book is not a standalone and must be read in order.

Content warnings: religious themes, extreme violence, gore, blood play, masochism, and others.

Arachnophobia warning: There is also a dog-sized pet spider named Paul who just wants to be loved.

Death is a 112,000-word dark paranormal MM romance featuring unrequited hate, Angels, Demons, Horsemen of the Apocalypse, snark and banter.

 

Excerpt 

When Abaddon stepped out of the fog, his mouth dropped open in surprise. What the fuck? He was right back where he’d started. Death was standing in the middle of the hallway, watching him through his hood. Valkyrie was now standing beside him, her sheer size making the already small space feel that much smaller. Places like this hadn’t been built for Beings like them, and especially not for the legendary Horsemen’s mares.

“What did you do?” Abaddon snarled, advancing on Death.

Death didn’t stop Abaddon from shoving him against the wall, and neither did Valkyrie. Abaddon did what he’d been wanting to do since they’d returned and yanked Death’s hood off.

Death’s handsome face came into view instantly, those milky white eyes looking right at him. He had a dimple in his chin that Abaddon had never noticed before. He looked like he was made of porcelain, fragile and delicate. Even his five o’clock shadow didn’t detract from how vulnerable he looked without the protection of his hood.

“Careful,” Death said quietly.

“Thought you wanted that kiss,” Abaddon sneered.

“Killing you was the point last time,” Death said. “I don’t wish to do so again. Not unless you give me no choice.”

Abaddon fisted his hands in Death’s cloak on either side of his body. He was so close to Death’s face that he could feel Death trying to suck him in. The aura around him was reaching for Abaddon, and Abaddon wavered forward, wanting that too.

Death placed a gloved hand on his chest and gently pushed him so there was more distance between them, enough for Abaddon to get his wits about him. “I said I would if I could, but we can’t.”

Abaddon shook himself out of his trance. Fuck. Why was it so easy to lose control around this Being? “Why can’t I travel through the fog?” he asked, trying to find any distraction to stop himself from taking the kiss, anyway.

“You can,” Death said calmly. “To almost any place that exists. But it takes a great deal of Power to get through the fog to the gates of Heaven. You no longer possess that Power.”

Abaddon’s heart dropped, and he masked it with an angry twist of his face. He wouldn’t show weakness, especially not to Death. “Fuck you.” He had plenty of strength left. He didn’t need his poison to wreak havoc or to destroy everything in his path.

“I will take you.”

“I don’t need your help.”

“It is not a weakness to ask for it,” Death said. “There is strength in it.”

“In what world? Needing help is a weakness and in my world when you show weakness the consequences are never worth it. They parade it around and use it against you.”

“I seek nothing in return,” Death replied softly.

Abaddon wanted to scream at him, hit him, hurt him, make him bleed, the same way he felt like he was inside, just from this conversation. The physical pain was absent but what was left in its wake was somehow worse.

“Then why do you look at me like that?”

“Like what?”

“Like you want something.” Abaddon knew. He could see it.

Death shifted, bending his head closer. His lips hovered above Abaddon’s ear and a thrill ran through him. If he moved even an inch Death would touch him and it would be all over. He could already feel himself weakening from the pull. Death was already starting the process, because even being this close to him meant death was calling.

“I do want something,” Death whispered, his breath brushing Abaddon’s ear, pin pricks of pain curling around the curve and sending a shiver through him. “The same thing that I know you want. And when I decide to take it, I won’t ask. Now get on the horse, Abaddon.”

 

 

About the Author

 

Sienna Moreau is a dark MM romance author who likes to let the darker side of life come out to play. If you’re looking for morally grey characters, snark, mayhem and steamy situations then you’re in the right place.

 

Social Media Links

Facebook Group  |  Facebook Page  |  Instagram

 

Giveaway 

Enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway for a chance to win

one of 3 ebook copies from the author’s backlist


a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

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A Destined Christmas Miracle by Jaiyde Thomas #giveaway

BLOG TOUR with AUTHOR INTERVIEW

Title: A Destined Christmas Miracle (All Access Book 1)

Author and Publisher: Jaiyde Thomas

Cover Artist: Cyan Avogadoyle

Release Date: February 14, 2023

Genre: Contemporary gay romance

Tropes: Hurt/comfort, BDSM, slow burn

Themes: Learning to trust after trauma, forgiveness, finding yourself

Heat Rating: 3 flames

Length: 136 000 words / 514 pages

It is a standalone story and does not end on a cliffhanger.

Goodreads

 

Buy Links

Universal Buy Link

 

When trauma leaves you unable to trust anyone including yourself, how do you cope?

 

Blurb

Welcome to All Access, a new BDSM club that promotes inclusivity. When you step through these doors, you are bound to find equality, acceptance, and even… love.

Colin

For the past year all I’ve known is heartbreak, and going to All Access was supposed to be a distraction from the pain. However, when I see my former play partner happy and in love, I flee the club, vowing never to return.

Leaving Ohio and travelling to Alabama for a few days should help me to clear my head and help me to forget, but no amount of beautiful scenery, hot men, and southern accents could prepare me for what awaited me at the hardcore BDSM club, Flame of Fury.

When I wake to find myself in my hotel room, I’m reeking of vomit and in extreme pain. Nothing makes sense, except for the vaguely familiar man who promises to never leave my side, even after I tell him what I remember.

As I try to put my life back together, Stephen’s loyalty, belief, and kindness never wavers, but can I trust him after all that I’ve endured?

Stephen

I’ve never allowed my blindness to hinder me, and that includes my sex life. As a Dominant, my primary goal is to fulfill the needs of my play partners.

When a heartbroken submissive asks for a scene, my instincts are on alert as I agree, but after ten spankings, Colin flees, and I’m left wondering about the boy with an ache in my heart.

A year later All Access opens, and I’m excited by the prospect of a club that caters to the disabled. More than that, I’m hoping to see Colin again. However, my joy is short-lived, because Colin is in trouble. When I see him respond to an ad that screams DANGER, I refuse to wait around. With a friend in tow I set out to rescue him, but we find him too late: He’s bruised, battered, and alone.

His injuries and trauma are too much for him to bear so I agree to help him through it, but as altruism turns into guiding, nurturing, and training, I can’t help but wonder about the future.

But can I be what Colin needs after all that he’s endured?

This book is intended for readers ages 18+

 

INTERVIEW WITH THE AUTHOR

The book that holds everlasting resonance…

I’d have to say Jane Eyre. I’ve read that book more than twice now, and I’m a sucker for a romance with a happily ever after. I think the book is so special to me, because of the ending. Jane doesn’t care that Mr. Rochester is blind. Because of that, the book holds a special place in my heart.

The film you can watch time and time again…

Well, there’s two. I can watch the Fifty Shades trilogy over and over, but I believe the reason has changed. At first, it was the BDSM that had me glued to the TV and how the characters interacted with each other. Now, I think I watch it to analyze and criticize, because I’ve learned so much since my first time watching.

Drumline is my second favorite movie. I was a drummer in middle and high school, and I know what it’s like to have conflict within a percussion section. I can quote almost every line from the movie, and it has a good lesson behind it: never lie and trust the others around you!

The song that means the most to you…

I’d have to say “Same Love” by Macklemore. The first few lines get to me every time, and the chorus holds so much promise. That song really brought to the surface all of the injustice the LGBTQIA community was facing, and I’m so glad that it’s my top song. It holds so much promise for our future as a nation.

The happiest moment you will cherish forever…

I attended a blind school from seventh grade until graduation. In eighth grade, I was a part of the blind marching band that was invited to participate in the Tournament of Roses parade in 2010. Our marching band was the first blind band to have done so, and as we crossed the five-mile mark, tears streamed down my face. All of our hard work had paid off! We had made history that day!

Your early recollections of writing fiction…

At nine years old, I was obsessed with the Naked Brothers Band, a rock band. I loved the lead singer, Nat Wolff, and I wanted to write songs just like him, So, I did that up until I was thirteen. I started writing stories of pregnant teenagers and babymama drama for a year, and then, because I was a section leader of the percussion section in marching band, I used my own experiences to create a series based off of what I was dealing with.

The figure from history you would most like to buy a pie and a pint…

Since I could remember, I have been interested in Helen Keller and her life. I’ve watched movies and plays, read books, and am planning on visiting the Helen Keller museum soon. She is a blind and deaf activist and speaker, and I would love to meet her.

The treasured item you lost and wish you could have again…

The item that comes to mind is a bracelet that was bought for me by a friend who has recently died of cancer. It was a bracelet that I had been wanting for a while, but never had the money to afford. I asked him if he could buy it for me, and for a while, I never took it out of my pocket. I had moved it from my coat pocket to my nightstand drawer, and at some point, it was stolen from me. What I would give to touch and wear that bracelet.

The philosophy that underpins your life…

I’ve always had this attitude about my disability. I never allow my blindness to hinder me, and I think I picked that up in marching band. Before that, I was very strong willed and adamant, but after attending the Rose Bowl parade, I was even more determined to not let my disability define me. I’ve accomplished some great things as a blind African American woman, and I am so proud that I didn’t allow my disability to hold me back.

The character you enjoyed writing the most…

Stephen from A Destined Christmas Miracle. BDSM is so fascinating to me, and I enjoyed getting into his head as a Dominant, and figuring out what made him tick and what motivated him. He is also blind like me, so we had something in common.

The book you enjoyed planning/writing the most…

A Destined Christmas Miracle is my longest book. Participating in NanoWrimo was the best thing I did in 2021, because it allowed me time to fully plot out this book and take my time writing. There was a lot of research that went into this book and a lot of sensitive issues that needed to be handled delicately, so that was another fun part of the planning process.

Thank you.

 

Excerpt 

I smiled at the young man with a gold earring in his ear as he attached a wristband to my arm. They signified ranking: mine was blue, which told men I was a bottom. I scanned the bar’s main area, watching men in various activities. Sensuously groping one another in dark areas of the bar, making out, their eyes only for each other, grinding slowly to the Trey Songz song that pulsed from the speakers.

I closed my eyes as my mind wandered to the last time Josaiah and I were here. I was carrying him out of the bar, his body heavy, not just from his weight, but because of the alcohol he had consumed. I had watched as he downed glass after glass of something or other, his hands and mouth greedily taking what he wanted from multiple men.

I could hear my ragged breathing in my ears and opened my eyes. I swiftly walked to the bar, hoisted myself onto a stool, and waited patiently for the bartender, Joey, to serve me. Maybe I’ll order something strong. It’s not like I am getting fucked tonight. Although on second thought, if I were to get fucked, a non-alcoholic beverage would keep my head clear so that I could remember the experience.

“Yo, man. What can I get for you?”

“A water, please.” Suddenly, I felt like I was going to cry, and the cold beverage would help keep the tears at bay.

“I haven’t seen you since you carried Jo outta here. How is he?” he asked as he filled a cup with ice.

I lowered my eyes, a lump the size of a golf ball forming in my throat.

Please, don’t cry, not here!

“Hey, are you okay?”

“Yes,” I said softly as I took the glass from him, the coldness from the ice cooling my now warm hands. I took a long swig, set the glass on the bar, and regarded Joey. I shook my head. “I’m not sure how he’s doing.”

“Oooh, trouble in paradise?” He looked at me expectantly, awaiting my answer, but I turned my head.

It’s none of your business.

“Okay, so you don’t wanna talk? Why are you here then? You look like you’ve had one helluva week. Want something stronger?”

I dropped my head into my hands, not wanting to divulge the pain, hurt, and anger that I felt. Inhaling deeply to calm myself, I turned back toward him and shook my head.

“Suit yourself,” he muttered as he walked away to serve other patrons.

Sipping on my water, I watched the men. Some wore practically nothing while others wore leather outfits, the material hugging their muscles and curves just right. I tore my eyes away as I watched a twink with a nose ring on his knees, his Dominant’s hand tousling his hair as he reached to fasten a play collar around his neck. I squeezed my eyes shut again, wishing with all my might that I could just forget BDSM altogether.

After meeting Josaiah, I did a little more research into the subject and the different implements used for pain and pleasure. It seemed everywhere I looked, something jarred a memory or a thought of the lifestyle, and I hated it so much! Maybe it was a mistake coming back here. Slamming my glass down on the bar, I raised my hand. One more drink, and I’ll leave. I could feel the tension building in my shoulders.

“Joey!” I snapped, not caring about my tone of voice.

“What’s up?” His eyes were searching my face, concern evident in his expression.

“Another glass of water, please,” I huffed, avoiding his gaze and looked at the patrons surrounding the bar.

Most men were engaged in conversation, but others were eating, drinking, and laughing loudly. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw a man sitting alone at the far-left corner of the bar, and I snickered. His hair is fucking purple!

I focused on his body language: how his folded, hairy arms rested on the bar, his long fingers tapped the glass that he was holding, and he seemed oblivious to the men ogling him.

Why am I looking at other men? I knew that Josaiah and I were over, and he had betrayed me, but I still felt a tug in my heart when I thought about him. Maybe this was a mistake. All I had wanted was to get away from my thoughts of Josaiah, and just be in the moment.

Jaycee’s Saloon was where I used to come and unwind after a long week, getting fucked and sucked, but now all it held were memories, both good and bad. There was nothing left for me here. As I stood to go, I took one last glance at the guy with the purple hair. He seemed not to notice anything around him.

I walked a few steps in his direction to get a better view. Holy fuck! He was hotter up close, the muscles in his arms and back taut, his hair combed back making it appear smooth, his face shaven and clean. I licked my lips and walked closer to the man. I stopped as he turned toward me. He raised his face in my direction, and I couldn’t take my eyes off his. He didn’t look at me directly, and his eyes were cloudy.

Inhaling deeply, I stepped back and squeezed my lips together. He’s blind, could he know Josaiah?

 

 

About the Author  

Jaiyde Thomas is a lover of words and languages. Though her heart is in Alabama, she was born and raised in Ohio. Her first experience with gay romance was when she offered to beta read her friend’s novel. Since then, she’s been hooked on the genre. Her inspirations are Gianni Holmes, K. C. Wells, and Parker Williams, and their books are the reason why Jaiyde started writing.

She loves a good story with complex characters, steamy sex scenes, and happily ever afters.

 

Author Links

LinkTree

 

Giveaway 

Enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway for a chance to be one of 2 winners who will each receive:

1 hardback of A Destined Christmas Miracle

1 audiobook copy of Claim Me, Love Me

1 merch item

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Camboy (My Kinky Housemate Book 6) by Colette Davison

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Camboy (My Kinky Housemate Book 6)

Author and Publisher: Colette Davison

Cover Artist: Covers by Jo

Release Date:  March 10, 2023

Genre: Contemporary M/M Romance

Tropes: MMMM, friends to lovers, age-gap, found family, kink

 Length: 107 000 words

Heat Rating:  4.5 flames

It can be read as a standalone, but works better as part of the series. It does not end on a cliffhanger.

Book 1, Sugar Bunny, will be on sale at 99c/99p on a Kindle Countdown deal until the 15th March.

Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

Universal Link  |  Amazon US  |  Amazon UK

Having a foursome is a dream come true, but navigating a relationship is more challenging.

 

Blurb

Being a camboy is great, but I’m bored of performing solo. I’ve invited myself to be adult film star Lyric Steele’s co-star for the day, and I’m taking my partner-in-crime and soon-to-be-housemate, Rubin, along as my chaperone.

 It doesn’t take long to realise I’m attracted to Lyric. And to his flatmate, Toby, a talented director with a firm hand. And to Rubin, who I’ve been flirting with forever. A steamy night proves the four of us have chemistry, but taking our relationship out of the bedroom won’t be easy. 

 Lyric and Toby have their hands full with my bratty ways, and Rubin’s no angel either. Will good communication be enough to turn sexy fun into something strong and lasting?

Camboy is an MMMM friends-to-lovers, steamy, age-gap romance with two Doms, two bratty subs and found family. It’s the sixth and final book in the My Kinky Housemate series. While it can be read as a standalone, it’s better to read it as part of the series.

 

Excerpt 

I take my turn. “Have you ever had sex in public? Not unless you count sucking off that jock in empty classrooms.”

Rubin frowns. “Haven’t you had sex in the stacks at The Library?”

“No.” I smile stiffly. “But I’d like to. I also want to do it somewhere more risqué.” I smirk. “Like sucking someone off in a restaurant or having a quickie in a lift on the way to the top floor of a tall building.”

“I told you he had at least twenty sexual fantasies.” Rubin pulls me to him and kisses my hair. “And I know I’ll enjoy listening to all of them.”

I wave my hand. “At least twenty. I could list them all right now if you wanted me to.” I run my finger over my bottom lip. “They might turn you on, but that’s okay, isn’t it?”

Lyric shudders. “We’re playing a game.”

I let out a dramatic sigh and then knock the Jenga tower over.

“Why did you do that?”

“Game over. Oh no. Maybe we should fuck instead.”

“He did it because he’s a brat,” Toby says. His voice is firm, but there’s an underlying hint of amusement ruining the effect.

“A brat who wants to be fucked. Or spanked. Or allowed to suck off one or all of my men.” I flutter my lashes. “I’m not fussy.”

Lyric laughs. “I’m sure you’re not.”

I return to Rubin, put my hand on his nape, and stare into his eyes. “Kiss me?”

He obliges, devouring my mouth. I moan and whimper around his tongue and rub my chest against his. Eventually, we have to break to breathe.

I flutter my lashes at Toby and Lyric. “Please, Sirs, can we watch you fuck?”

They glance at each other, eyes sparkling.

Toby rubs his thighs. “They did ask nicely.” His earlier hesitance seems to be gone. Thankfully.

“All right,” Lyric says. “On one condition.”

Rubin and I stare at him expectantly.

“You’re not allowed to touch yourselves or each other.”

“What?” Rubin asks.

Lyric smiles. “You heard. You’re not allowed to touch yourselves or each other.”

“We’re not even allowed to kiss?” I ask, horrified.

His smile morphs into a grin. “Nope.”

“That’s…torture.”

“I know. Take it or leave it.”

 

About the Author

Colette’s personal love story began at university, where she met her future husband. An evening of flirting, in the shadow of Lancaster castle, eventually led to a fairytale wedding. She’s enjoying her own ‘happy ever after’ in the north of England with her husband, two beautiful children and her writing.

 

Social Media Links

Blog/Website  |   Facebook Page   |  Facebook Group: Colette’s Cosy Corner

BookBub   |   Twitter  |   Goodreads  |  Instagram: @colettedavison

Mailing List  |   Newsletter Sign-Up

 

 

Giveaway 

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$10 Amazon gift card

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Colton’s Terrible Wonderful Year by Vincent Traughber Meis #giveaway

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Colton’s Terrible Wonderful Year

Author: Vincent Traughber Meis

Publisher: Spectrum Books

Release Date: March 4, 2023

Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Fiction

Tropes: First love 

Themes: Coming of Age, Racial identity, Gay parenting

Heat Rating: 2 flames

Length: 58 000 words/ 231 pages

It is a standalone story.

 It is the third book that focuses on the Burd siblings:

Four Calling Burds, First Born Sons, Colton’s Terrible Wonderful Year. 

The book does not end on a cliffhanger.

Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited 

Universal Link  |  Amazon US  |  Amazon UK 

 

Colton searches for the surrogate mom he hasn’t seen since the day he was born

 

Blurb

Colton is on a quest to meet his surrogate mom who might help him navigate being a Black teenager in today’s America. The woman who gave birth to him is Black. His dads are not. His diverse community of family and friends includes lots of LGBTQ+ people, though his first love is a girl of mixed race like him. Colton’s dads reluctantly introduce him to his birth mother, but she doesn’t turn out to be the person he hoped for. On his journey of falling in love, nearly losing one of his dads, and confronting a racist cousin, he learns about love, non-traditional families, community, and what is important in life. The biggest challenge of all is something he discovers about his birth, causing friction with his dads. But like every difficulty in his life, the love of his dads ultimately carries him along and lifts him up.

 

Excerpt 

I can pinpoint the day my life started getting strange, and by strange, I mean grown-up. My parents had just picked me up at the police station. It was the first time I had gotten in trouble with law enforcement and my dads (yes; I have two dads) were upset and, I suppose, embarrassed, and a bunch of other emotions. Let me just say, my dads are the coolest people on earth and probably don’t deserve the hard time I sometimes give them when I do stupid things and say stupid things and they get mad, and I get mad back. I don’t even want to think about all the times we ended up in tears because, you know, life is hard, and I really love them, and they really love me.

Those times the three of us ended up blubbering idiots were the worst but later turned out to be the best when we finished the evening on the couch eating ice cream and watching a movie that we all agreed was terrible and laughed and cuddled under a blanket because evenings are always cold in San Francisco, including in the summer. And, even if they weren’t, I loved the warmth and comfort of being in a family that wasn’t afraid to show affection.

But coming home from the police station was tough. I walked into the house in front of my dads and was headed for my room, my happy place, feeling like everything would be okay if I could get to my room and close the door on all the bad stuff. But before I was halfway down the hall, I heard my dad’s raised voice. “Where are you going?” That’s my dad, Augie, August actually, who I call Dad.

It was pretty obvious, but I said, “To my room.”

And my other dad chimed in. “No, you’re not.” His name is Ruben, but I call him Papi. He was born in Los Angeles, though his parents are from Mexico.

“Why not?”

“Did you think that was the end of it?” said Dad. “You’ve lost your screen time for a week and you will come home directly from school until further notice.”

“I said I was sorry.” I think I actually groaned like I was the most unfortunate teenager in the world, which I knew was a long, long way from the truth.

“Sorry doesn’t cut it. There have to be consequences.” That was Dad with the dreaded c-word, a favorite with parents, teachers, and, I guess, adults in general.

Here’s the deal. My two best friends, Fer and Josh, and I went downtown after school and ended up in the Target store. It’s not something we do a lot because we often have basketball practice or Fer has to go home and take care of his younger sibs because both his parents work or Josh has to do something because whichever one of his divorced parents he’s with on a particular day is on his case. And Dad is now home all the time because he took a leave of absence from his job at the Mission Branch of the public library so he could pursue writing full time. If I’m not home by a certain time, I get the third degree. But the way the stars lined up that day, we didn’t have basketball practice. Fer’s mom stayed home because the clients she cooks for were out of town; it was the part of the week Josh was with his dad and his dad was working late; and my dad went to some writing event in Berkeley and wouldn’t be home until dinnertime. We were free. It was amazing how rarely that happened on a weekday.

 

 

About the Author 

Vincent Traughber Meis grew up in Decatur, Illinois where he got his start writing plays for his younger sisters to act in for a neighborhood audience. He graduated from Tulane University in New Orleans and worked for many years as an English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher in the San Francisco Bay Area, Spain, Saudi Arabia and Mexico, publishing many academic articles in his field. He published travel articles, poems, and book reviews in publications such as, The Advocate, LA Weekly, In Style, and Our World in the 1980’s and 90’s. He finally arrived at his true writing love: novels and short stories. Five of his seven published novels are set at least partially in foreign countries and his book of short stories focuses on countries around the world. Several of his novels have won Rainbow Awards and The Mayor of Oak Street was awarded a Reader Views Silver Award. He has published short stories in a number of collections and has achieved Finalist status in a few short fiction contests. He lives in San Leandro, California.

 

Social Media Links

Blog/Website  |  Facebook  |  Instagram  |  Goodreads

 

Giveaway

Enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway for a chance to win

one of 5 copies of Four Calling Burds (a prequel to Colton’s Terrible Wonderful Year)

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Hosted by Gay Book Promotions

Playing Deep by Beth Bolden #kindleunlimited #giveaway

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Playing Deep (Miami Piranhas Book 5) 

Author and Publisher: Beth Bolden

Cover Artist: Cate Ashwood Designs

Release Date: February 15, 2023

Genre: gay contemporary sports romance

Tropes: hookups to lovers, mysterious past, player and reporter

Themes: loyalty, honor, and unconditional love

Heat Rating:  4 flames

Length: 98 000 words

It is #5 in the series, but could be read by itself.

Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited 

Universal Link  |  Amazon US  |   Amazon UK 

 

 

Blurb

Kenyon Ellis knows getting involved with Julian Anderson is an enormous mistake—but from the very first night, he finds him annoying, intriguing and ultimately, irresistible.

One, Kenyon is a player, and Julian is a reporter, so hooking up with him, no matter how spectacular the nights are, is a terrible idea.

Two, he’s falling for him, even if Julian continues to be prickly and impossible. But every time Julian’s walls shift, Kenyon sees the real man behind the attitude, and he only wants more.

Three, between the Piranhas and the charity work he’s committed to, Kenyon really doesn’t have the time for a relationship—but a relationship with Julian turns out to be exactly what he wants.

Maybe even exactly what he needs.

But when Julian starts calling out his performance on the field, the last thing Kenyon expects is his betrayal. But is it betrayal? Or does Julian see something in Kenyon that he’s lost?

The answer leads him not only to love, but to the biggest crossroads of his life.

The fifth and final Miami Piranhas book.

 

Excerpt

“You really didn’t know who I was, did you?” Kenyon asked.

Julian shot him a look. “I told you, you’re going to believe what you want to believe.”

“I want to believe,” Kenyon said, his voice a little unsteady, “whatever the truth is. That’s all. I promise.”

“What if the truth isn’t what you want to hear?” Julian angled his head, licked his lips. He was trying to be flirty again. Tough. Put those walls back up between them. Kenyon could see his technique now, easy as breathing.

The thing was, Kenyon could never hate Julian flirting with him. Even if it was because he was trying to deflect from the truth.

He pressed a palm right into Julian’s chest, felt the firmness of his pectoral muscles. He was slim, but he was strong. What would he look like naked?

Gorgeous, that’s what he’d look like.

Kenyon kept trying not to think about it, but instead, it was all he could think about, the possibilities fogging up his brain, obscuring every bit of good sense he had.

“Fine,” Julian said with a resigned sigh. Like he was finally giving in. “Fine. Okay. I didn’t know who you were.”

Kenyon curled his fingers into the cotton of Julian’s polo. This one was baby blue with a tiny white and red stripe through it. The man looked like the hottest goddamn American flag that he’d ever seen.

It should have been such an asshole move, like he was the guy who mounted a flag on the back of his giant truck, or hung one from the tallest mast of his fucking sailboat, and Kenyon should’ve been desperate to steer clear. But that wasn’t Julian. He knew it wasn’t. He could see just a flash, just a glimpse of the guy behind the polo. Behind the act. So, instead, he took another step closer. Until he felt the warmth of Julian’s thighs through the thin fabric of his shorts.

“Thank you,” Kenyon said. “I think we both deserved the truth, didn’t we? It was . . .” He hesitated.

There was another crack in Julian’s armor. A genuine smile, flashed quickly, Kenyon barely getting the impact of it before it was gone. “The best thing that could’ve happened and also the worst?”

“I think,” Kenyon said, dipping his head, so tempted to just end this ridiculous standoff by kissing Julian so thoroughly he always smiled at him that way, “we should just focus on the best part.”

Julian shot him an unimpressed look, clearly trying to pretend he wasn’t affected by Kenyon’s nearness, but Kenyon could feel the faintest tremor in his chest, just like he’d trembled last night and there was no denying it now. Kenyon wanted him to give in. Wanted to feel him shake when all that self-possession and self-control fell and the orgasm overtook him.

“It would be a terrible idea to do it again,” Julian said. There was a look in his eyes, though, that said he wouldn’t exactly mind it.

Kenyon knew it was a bad idea to repeat their initial mistake. But they’d done it last night, hadn’t they, and the world hadn’t stopped revolving. Coach hadn’t found out. Julian’s boss hadn’t discovered any deep, dark, dirty secrets about him.

“You know what I think?” Kenyon asked.

“What?” He was still pretending. Kenyon could feel it, and wanted nothing more than to strip Julian down to the bare essentials, so he could see the real man behind the act.

“I think you want me.” He stripped off the practice jersey. Tossed it on the floor. Then reached over and tugged Julian’s polo out of his jeans.

Julian didn’t stop him. Just kept looking at him with those inscrutable eyes.

Like they could see right through him, see down to every single thing he kept close, every single thing he hid from the world.

It was all laid bare before Julian.

“I think you,” Julian said in a soft, damning voice, “want me.”

 

 

About the Author 

A lifelong Pacific Northwester, Beth Bolden has just recently moved to North Carolina with her supportive husband. Beth still believes in Keeping Portland Weird, and intends to be just as weird in Raleigh.

Beth has been writing practically since she learned the alphabet. Unfortunately, her first foray into novel writing, titled Big Bear with Sparkly Earrings, wasn’t a bestseller, but hope springs eternal. She’s published twenty-three novels and seven novellas.

 

Author Links

Blog/Website  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |   BookBub

Instagram  |  Newsletter Sign-up

 

Giveaway 

Enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway for a chance to win

$20 Amazon gift card.

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Light My Way Home: A Treasure Trail Novella by Morgan Brice #giveaway

BLOG TOUR

Book Title: Light My Way Home: A Treasure Trail Novella

Author: Morgan Brice

Publisher:  Darkwind Press

Cover Artist: Adrijus Guscia

Release Date: January 25, 2023

Genres: Paranormal MM romance, urban fantasy

Tropes: Hurt/comfort, second chance, age gap, friends-to-lovers, misunderstood ghost, lonely lighthouse keeper

Themes: Working up the courage to love, getting over old betrayals, fighting the odds to stay together, forbidden love (medium and ghost)

Heat Rating: 4 flames

Length: 22 000 words/ 74 pages

It is a standalone book and is the prequel to the series.

It does not end on a cliffhanger

Goodreads

 

Buy Links

Amazon US  |   Amazon UK 

 

A love strong enough to transcend death.

 

Blurb 

A shy lighthouse keeper who can talk to ghosts. A lonely ghost mourning the losses of the past and hoping for justice. A love strong enough to transcend death.

Monty Clark is the new park ranger for the Cape May Light. He hoped to find someone to love who can accept his ability as a psychic medium.

Jon Richards was a movie stuntman murdered on the beach in the 1950s. When the new lighthouse keeper strikes up a conversation and invites him in to watch TV, Jon discovers that a beating heart isn’t required to fall in love.

Light My Way Home is an MM paranormal romance with a shy park ranger, a protective ghost, unsolved murders, a dangerous shipwreck, supernatural ninja nuns, vintage movies, old secrets, and love bigger than life or death.

 

Excerpt 

“And that concludes today’s tour of the Cape May Lighthouse. Don’t forget to stop by our gift shop and tell your friends if you had fun today.” Lighthouse keeper

Montana “Monty” Clark watched his guests troop toward the shop and followed close behind so he could ring up their snacks and souvenirs.

“What is that big thing out on the beach?” a lady who reminded Monty of his grandmother asked as he ran her credit card for a lighthouse Christmas ornament, some post‐ cards, bottled water, and a bag of gummy worms.

“That’s Battery 223, built to survive an air strike, and back during the Second World War, it protected the coast with guns that could fire shells miles out to sea,” Monty said with a smile as he carefully wrapped the ornament and bagged her purchases. “Of course, the guns have been gone for a long time. It’s part of the park now, but it’s closed up, so unfortunately, no one can go inside.”

“I bet it would be a popular tour if you could get that changed,” she replied. “Is it haunted? Seems like everything in Cape May has ghosts running around, or at least that’s what our last guide said.”

Even more than you know, Monty thought, although his grin never wavered. “People claim to have spotted some ghosts nearby, but I don’t think any of them were soldiers. The bunker’s guns never fired, and it didn’t come under attack.”

“You did a nice job with the tour,” the lady said. “Tonight we’re taking a ghost tour. Maybe we’ll get lucky and see some spooky stuff.”

“Good luck,” he answered and hoped he sounded sincere. Monty had been able to see and talk with ghosts all his life, and he knew that most people had no idea what they were asking for by seeking out restless spirits.

She gave him a cheery wave as she left, and several more customers kept him busy until the last of the cars drove away, and the lighthouse was peaceful again.

Monty liked the quiet. He enjoyed spending time with close friends, but being alone didn’t bother him. When he had read a book about a lighthouse keeper as a kid, he’d known right then what he wanted to do.

Unlike the lighthouse in that book, the Cape May Light wasn’t on a desolate, windswept rocky island accessible only by boat. As part of a state park in a touristy beach town, it had plenty of visitors in summer and lots of walkers and birdwatchers strolling the grounds off-season. School groups and tours came to learn about the town’s seafaring history, and Monty loved showing them around the building, answering questions, and tossing in unusual facts.

But at the end of the day, the quiet grounds and empty beach soothed Monty’s soul. He bustled around the public areas of the building, making a quick check for trash or lost items. Then he locked the doors and headed for a stroll on the sand to enjoy the sunset.

 

About the Author

Morgan Brice is the romance pen name of bestselling author Gail Z. Martin. Morgan writes urban fantasy male/male paranormal romance, with plenty of action, adventure and supernatural thrills to go with the happily ever after. Gail writes epic fantasy and urban fantasy, and together with co-author hubby Larry N. Martin, steampunk and comedic horror, all of which have less romance, more explosions. Characters from her Gail books make frequent appearances in secondary roles in her Morgan books, and vice versa.

On the rare occasions Morgan isn’t writing, she’s either reading, cooking, or spoiling two very pampered dogs.

Series include Witchbane, Badlands, Treasure Trail, Kings of the Mountain and Fox Hollow. Watch for more in these series, plus new series coming soon!

 

Author Links

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Facebook Group  |   Facebook Page

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Read a copy of my Badlands short story Restless Nights here for free

 

 

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Series Tour – Corrupt Cupid – A dark multi-author collaboration

SERIES TOUR – CORRUPT CUPID

A multi-author collaboration

Ditch the hearts and flowers and step into the dark world of Corrupt Cupid.

Each book can be read as a standalone, but why not grab each and every deranged romantic tale as you slip into a place where darkness rules?

HEA included.

Overall Heat Rating for the series: 5 flames

 

BOOK DETAILS

 

 BOOK 1

Book Title: Be Mine, Twisted Valentine

Author and Publisher: Gianni Holmes

Cover Artist: Charli Childs

Length: 58 000 words

Release Date: February 7, 2023

Genres: Contemporary M/M Romance, bisexual romance

Tropes: Age gap, dark romance, stalker romance, dubcon, size difference, cheating (not in the MM relationship, abduction

Themes: dark, abduction, torture

Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK

 

 

Blurb 

Fifteen years ago, I helped put my abductor behind bars.

And shunned the events of my traumatic past.

I’ve lived a content life with my wife.

Until the dreaded phone call.

Duncan Whittaker’s out on parole.

The first time I confront him, I intend to kill him.

But when we’re face to face, everything changes.

I’m still codependent on him.

Duncan’s the only man who’s ever made me feel desire.

He’s also the one who held me captive for almost a year.

Isolated me from others to make me grateful for his presence.

Deprived me of sensation to make me crave his unwanted touch.

Duncan Whittaker’s the sadist who broke me in the name of revenge.

Now his twisted obsession is about to ruin my life a second time.

And God help me, but I don’t know how to stop him.

I… may not want to stop him.

 

BOOK 2

Book Title: Be Mine, Vicious Valentine

Author and Publisher: April Jade

Cover Artist: Charli Childs

Length: 35 000 words

Release Date: February 9, 2023

Genre: contemporary, MM Romance,

Tropes: Age-gap, boarding school, hurt/comfort, dark romance, daddy kink, counselor/patient

Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK

 

 

Blurb 

They called him Vicious… I called him mine.

Sebastian St. James was more mystery than human…

His timid, feeble disposition contradicted the violent rumors that surrounded him. He wasn’t a murderer… but they were afraid of him, anyway.

I was fascinated by him and the cautious way he hid his face. His hands trembled when somebody stared too long, and he was wary of speaking.

Secrets burned beneath his skin, and it was my job to expose them all. Bit by bit, I was tasked with tearing him apart until there was nothing left but the truth.

The funny thing about the truth? There’s always two versions, and it was Sebastian’s version that made me bleed.

I no longer wanted to wreck him. I wanted to protect him.

They called him Vicious… but it was me they should’ve been afraid of.

 

BOOK 3

Book Title: Be Mine, Bloody Valentine

Author and Publisher: Skyler Snow

Release Date: February 16, 2023

Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK

 

 

Blurb 

He left me.

Alec Sanborne abandoned me when I was nothing but a scared teenager. He deserted me in a house with a monster. Now, he’s prancing around NYU as a professor, pretending he’s normal.

But my step-brother is far from normal. I know all of his dirty little secrets, the ones he tries so carefully to hide. I plan to expose him, to strip everything away that he loves until he has nothing but me.

One look and I can see the love and desire in his eyes. He says he wants nothing to do with me, that I can’t be in his class. But how could I abandon the man I’ve fantasized about all these years?

Alec Sanborne is mine. My bloody valentine.

 

 

BOOK 4

Book Title: Be Mine, Heartless Valentine

Author and Publisher: Ashlynn Mills

Release Date: February 21, 2023

Goodreads 

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK

 

 

Blurb 

What started off as nothing more than a product to them quickly became everything to me.Each Friday is the same. I drive a borrowed truck to a warehouse to pick up a delivery. The back of the truck stays locked at all times, and I never look inside no matter what. These are the rules I must follow without any mishaps.Nothing can go wrong. Until it does. The curiosity I usually fight against ends up winning when I’m stranded in the middle of nowhere. Something calls my attention to the back of the truck and once I cut the lock, there’s no turning back. I can no longer lie to myself when I finally see what I’ve been delivering.One look at the frightened, beautiful man crawling out of the dark, and all the rules are shot to hell, and so is the promise of my family’s safety. I can’t walk away no matter how hard I try. The heartless man I’ve allowed myself to become in order to keep my loved ones safe now feels too much, and I can no longer finish what I started. Is Paxton really worth the risk? Can I keep him safe from the men who are after us. Most importantly, can I protect him from myself?It won’t stop me from trying. They want him and will keep coming until they get what they’re after.Him and everyone else keep forgetting one very important detail,the only person he belongs to,is me.

 

BOOK 5

Book Title: Be Mine, Cruel Valentines

Author and Publisher: Brea Alepoù

Release Date: February 23, 2023

Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK

 

 

 

Blurb 

I’ve been tormented by three a-holes my whole life; Theon, Foxyn, and Leyton. From sticking me in lockers to giving me wedgies to stripping me naked and laughing while I try to run home these three have done it all.

I hated them and their cruel games.

I’m their senior, I shouldn’t let them push me around.

But at some point the pain turned to pleasure and I…liked it. Their wicked glances, their devilish grins, their endless teasing. A few well placed words and I’m a wet, squirming mess.

Now? I can’t get enough of them. I don’t want to share them with anyone else. They will be mine. My cruel Valentines.

 

 

 

Meet the Authors – Facebook Reader Groups

Gianni Holmes

April Jade

Skyler Snow

Ashlynn Mills

Brea Alepoù

 

 

 

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Fall of the Pathfinder (Kessler Effect Book 1) by L. C. Lowe #giveaway #kindleunlimited

BOOK BLAST

Book Title: Fall of the Pathfinder (Kessler Effect Book 1)

Author and Publisher: L. C. Lowe

Cover Artist: Lance Buckley

Release Date: December 19, 2022

Genre: Science Fiction M/M Romance

Tropes: Slow Burn, Friends to Lovers

Themes: Finding yourself outside society’s labels

Heat Rating:  1 flame

Length: 75 448 words/284 pages

It is not a standalone story.

The book ends on a soft cliffhanger (ie. the story is resolved but larger plot-lines are left hanging)

Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited 

Universal Link  |  Amazon US  |  Amazon UK

 

The company controls his life, but not his destiny.

 

Blurb

Working for ARC in the depths of space, 17-year-old Julian Sastre has struggled in the mines for two years to make the family name mean something again. He is a Pathfinder – the most dangerous and elite job in the mines, seeking out the richest growths of C6.

When he is blamed for an explosion that causes a collapse, he flees into the ruins of Old Easton, the city his father’s mistake destroyed a decade ago. The only ally Julian has there is Garret, a charming thief with secrets of his own.

ARC is determined to capture him, and the Wasters who live in what’s left of the city are more than they appear. Will Julian decide to protect what he truly cares about and find his own path?

Get the first book in the Kessler Effect series, Fall of the Pathfinder, and find out today!

Fall of the Pathfinder is a slow burn queer science fiction romance.

 

Excerpt 

“I don’t—” Another crack. The window made a sound like breaking stone. Kernels of clear plastic pelted Julian’s right side. His HUD flashed a bright red damage warning.

“Big guy?”

“I’m all right!” Julian said.

Something hit Julian’s back. Hard. He couldn’t swallow down the grunt of pain. Another warning flashed across his HUD. He ignored it and kept his eyes focused on the map. “Left again. One de— Half of the last turn.”

The driver’s eyebrows slashed downward, but the smile didn’t quite leave the man’s face. 

They flew over the sand and the rover spent at least as much time in the air as it did on the ground, leaving Julian’s stomach behind each time it rose.

More debris clanged against them. The rear window cracked. It pelted his back. The debris overwhelmed the map with flashing red warning messages, but it didn’t matter. He was past the point of being helpful. If he’d let his teeth open, the only thing that would come out would be a scream.

The driver’s eyes never flicked away from the windshield, and his fingers never left the wheel. Not even to wipe away the blood rolling down his cheek.

Everything in Julian’s HUD lit up bright red, then it went dark. He looked down.

A rod of rusted metal was jutting through his side, just to the left of his belly button.

The pain hit him like it was waiting for him to notice it.

He ground his teeth together. The scream scorched his tongue. His arms shook. Sand streamed past his shoulders and into the rover. Julian pressed hard against the space of the window. It was the only way to keep himself from dropping forward into the seat with each bump. The pressure shoved the metal rod deeper, and spots of color danced across his vision.

The driver’s grip on the wheel was so tight that it made his knuckles white, but the guy was still smiling.

The roar of the storm was everywhere. It was filling up the world, and there was no room left for any other sounds.

The darkness was thick enough to feel. It pressed against Julian’s skin and sucked up the warmth. There was nothing but the dark, the scream, the pain, and the driver’s tight expression lit by the displays on the dashboard.

“Hold on!”

Laughter bubbled out of Julian. Holding on was the only thing he could do.

The rover hit a bump, and he flew. His head hit the roof. The world started spinning and flickering.

Julian bit the end of his tongue to keep the sounds locked inside. Another bump made him bite too hard, and his mouth filled with the metallic taste of his own blood.

They stopped.

His hand slipped, and he smacked the front window hard enough to make his vision flare red and then black. For a second, Julian was sure that he was going to pass out. He wanted to pass out.

Julian’s eyes cleared, and he got a look at the spot his rescuer chose to get them through the storm. It was a stretch of desert locked away inside a blacked-out Wall. The darkness of the storm had been bad, but the shadows that had pooled where they were now were something else. They were the thick, living kind that he’d only ever seen inside the mine.

The rover entered the space at an angle and the headlights caught on strange shapes and crumbled walls. It was impossible to see anything beyond the cones of light they cast in the heavy darkness, but Julian didn’t need to see to know where they were.

They were in Easton. The town his father destroyed.

 

About the Author

L. C. Lowe lives in Kansas City, where she spends most of her time trying to convince a very needy dog to let her pay attention to anything but him. She loves stories in all forms, be it books, movies, video games, or a car commercial that may or may not have made her tear up one (ok, maybe more than one) time.

 

Social Media Links

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Fire & Ice by Robin Lynn #giveaway

BOOK BLAST

Book Title: Fire & Ice

Author: Robin Lynn

Publisher: Idle Winter Press

Release Date: December 1, 2022

Genre: Contemporary M/M Romance

Tropes: Friends to lovers, mutual pining, firefighters, workplace romance

Themes: BDSM, self-acceptance, communication, trauma processing

Heat Rating: 5 flames

Length: 160 000 words/433 pages

It is a standalone story and does not end on a cliffhanger.

Goodreads

 

Buy Links

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK  |  Ko-fi

 

Fire & Ice is the queer exploration of domination and submission, friendship, love, and lust you’ve been waiting for! Grab your safeword and come along for the ride as two best friends discover BDSM, themselves, and what it really means to burn.

 

Blurb

“What’s your safeword?”

Firefighter Tripp Truett has somehow tumbled headfirst into a whole new kind of relationship with his quirky paramedic best friend, Leander. What was only meant to be mutual relief from their high-stress jobs is quickly developing into something more, but with all the missed signals and crossed wires, can these two ever figure out that they’re so much closer to being on the same page than they think?

 

Excerpt 

The air is chilly, the wind outright brisk, and Leander can’t help but reflect back on his earlier ponderings regarding the likelihood that his sweatshirt wouldn’t be warm enough tonight. He was right, but there’s nothing to do about it now. 

He’s dazed. So much so that he doesn’t realize he’s been standing in the middle of the parking lot, staring blankly at the engine for several embarrassingly long minutes. It’s not until the side door opens and someone gets out that Leander even makes an attempt to blink himself back to reality. 

Tripp, clad once again in only his bunker pants and a fucking t-shirt, hits the ground moving and strides towards him with a worried look on his face. Despite everything, Leander can’t help but smile at Tripp’s stubborn stupidity, his ridiculous predictability, and his lack of simple common sense. It’s inane, and Leander loves him for it.

“You look cold,” he comments smugly, but Tripp isn’t fooled, reaching out to grab Leander by the bicep and yank him into his chest, hugging him fiercely and clapping him firmly on the back, twice. Tears burst violently into the corners of Leander’s eyes, and he chokes and gasps a little while doing his best to force them back. 

“I know,” Tripp says gruffly, rocking them both from side to side as Leander clings.

“I really need you,” he mutters, soft and rough, and Tripp gets it immediately, pulling back and holding him at arm’s length, but in a reassuring, possessive sort of way. 

“You’ve got me,” he replies, looking Leander straight in the eyes. “I promise. Tomorrow night, soon as we get off shift, I’ll be there.” Tripp squeezes his shoulder while Leander works to put his emotions in check and his face back in order, searching for the right thing to say. Tripp is a miracle, and Leander already owes him so much. What would he have done if they hadn’t gone down this road? That’s not even something he’s capable of contemplating at the moment, so he shoves the thought away.

“Thank you,” he settles on saying, his voice coming out used and gritty. He swipes roughly at his eyes and nods. “Tomorrow, then.” 

The fire engine revs and rumbles behind them, like someone has stepped on the gas without first releasing the brake. Clearly, the crew inside isn’t trying to be obnoxious or insensitive, but someone wants them to get a move on. 

“Text me,” Tripp says, pointing a finger in Leander’s direction as he walks backward towards the waiting truck. With a last nod and a wave, Leander agrees, and lets him go. 

When he returns to his own truck, parked carefully in-between the next set of white lines beside Zosia and Echo’s, the patient compartment is nearly back to its formerly pristine state. “Thank you, Marley,” Leander says quietly, thumbing through his paperwork and the patient demographic information that Marley has kindly retrieved from registration. 

“Dude, I should be thanking you,” Marley quips, zipping up the first-in bag and plopping it on top of the stretcher for next time. “If you need—”

“I don’t,” Leander cuts her off quickly and then offers what he hopes reads as an appreciative look when she glares back at him disapprovingly. “I’m fine,” he assures her. 

“Oookay, if you say so,” Marley concedes, shrugging as she hops down out of the truck and makes her way to the driver’s seat. Before Leander follows, he takes a second to poke his head into the back of Zosia’s rig, only to find Echo doing the same cleaning routine as Marley. 

“Hey,” he says. “You should text Chloe. I don’t know how much she may have seen, but I thought she looked…” Leander trails off and presses his lips together. Echo will understand—she’s been dating his niece for over a year now and knows the interminably stubborn Chloe better than just about anyone. In some ways, the two of them remind Leander quite a lot of him and Tripp: complementary pieces that shouldn’t fit together, but somehow do. 

Except, of course, for the fact that Chloe loves Echo back, and she shows it openly. 

“Thanks for the heads up,” Echo replies sincerely, stopping what she’s doing to lean an elbow against the cabinets and eye Leander with concern. “And you? You don’t look so good.”

“I’m fine,” Leander grumbles, ducking back out of the box and heading for his own truck. “Besides having to reassure everyone else that’s the case.”

“That’s what Chloe always says when she’s not fine,” Echo yells after him.

“It’s what everyone says when they’re not fine, Echo,” Leander shoots back, noncommittal and evasive as ever. He slides into the cab of the ambulance and motions for Marley to get going before Echo can so much as reply (or before Zosia can show up and pile on him, too). That’s the last thing he needs right now. He is fine. Or at least, he will be. 

Tomorrow night. 

 

About the Author 

Robin Lynn is a 36-year-old queer, autistic mother of two, an unabashed fangirl sometimes known as “Wings,” and a disabled former firefighter, paramedic, and registered nurse. She writes for queer audiences with the goal of reflecting and centering the lgbtqia2s+ community in more media, because everyone deserves to see relatable, imperfect main characters who mirror themselves simply existing and getting their happy endings.

Find out more and follow Robin for additional content and future projects

 

 

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Year of the Jackal by Abby Kaitz #kindleunlimited

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Year of the Jackal

Author and Publisher: Abby Kaitz

Release Date: February 10, 2023

Genre: Contemporary MM romance; Romantic Comedy; New Adult

Tropes: Enemies to lovers, opposites attract

Themes: Taking risks, friendship, multicultural romance

Heat Rating: 2 flames   

Length: 73 000 words/ 292 pages

It is a standalone story and does not end on a cliffhanger.

Goodreads

 

Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK  

 

“Before you kill me, can I get a kiss?”

 

Blurb

It’s Silicon Valley meets the Ivy League in this new adult romantic comedy starring a computer hacker moonlighting as a prankster, an angry basketball player who just wants his underwear back, and a small college town full of oversized personalities.

Max Trellis-Tan’s List of Things to Do Before Graduation:

  • Find investors for his VR startup
  • Curb his pranking habit
  • Get Bramburgh University’s star basketball player to fall in love with him


It wasn’t Max’s fault that Aaron Scudder couldn’t take a prank. But when Max accidentally gets Aaron kicked off the basketball team, he quickly becomes Public Enemy Number One.

No matter how hard Aaron tries to have Max teleported to another planet, the two keep finding themselves tangled in increasingly amusing and bizarre situations around campus. Most bizarre of all is when their animosity turns into attraction.

Everything changes when Max gets accepted to a prestigious startup incubator.

Soon he’ll have to make a choice:

  • Chase his dreams in Silicon Valley?
  • Or take a chance on his growing feelings for Aaron?

 

Excerpt 

Tonight went against the lunar calendar.

Max Trellis-Tan had approximately 1,380 seconds left to live. That sounded much longer than the twenty-or-so minutes he actually had. Because his legs were starting to feel like marshmallows trying to cut through cement. All that time wasted on strength training. It didn’t even prepare him for this—this—whatever the heck was happening to him right now.

He stole a glance over his shoulder. Drunken bodies teetered out of his way, laughing. They laughed again, louder, and that was when Max knew the giant chasing him was closing in.

1,200 seconds left. 

It suddenly occurred to him that he could simply run into one of these houses on Greek Row. Safety in numbers and all that. Except the giant was bulldozing his way through the crowded sidewalk, and Max was not enough of an idiot to think he wouldn’t do the same in a house full of even more drunks. The smart thing to do was to keep running.

Something was blocking the sidewalk a couple of yards away. Max gave his legs an extra push and jumped over the recycling bin that had been recommissioned as some sort of ill-conceived beer pong table. Plastic cups and cheap beer spilled in his wake.

“Watch it, Jackie Chan!” The sound of high fives and hollering. “That Asian kid can run. Hey, Chan, can you get us some egg rolls?”

Even with the giant just strides away from pouncing, Max had enough clarity of mind to yell: “The egg rolls in this town are atrocious!”

He pushed past another group of students, ignoring the wasted frat bro who fell over after getting (accidentally!) elbowed by Max. Oops. Well, that guy wasn’t on the verge of losing his life tonight. Behind him, the growl of the giant bounding closer. It had an advantage. Those long legs: the pride of Bramburgh University.

It would take another three minutes to reach the corner of Pemaquid Avenue and Butterfirth Lane. Once there, it was a straight shot to Keesby Hall. Max patted his back pocket for his student ID; still there. Just a matter of whipping it out fast enough once he got to his dorm. And then he’d lock the growling giant out and do an annoying celebratory dance as the giant crushed rocks between his fingers or whatever it was that angry people did. 

Anger was such a foreign feeling. Like having water inside your ear. Even now, being chased by a vicious giant, finding himself in a situation that wasn’t entirely his fault (“But it technically was,” Zach would say), Max wasn’t mad. He wasn’t even scared. This was what college was all about: making strategically arbitrary decisions and feeling the rush of it pound at your ears and fill your heart with something close to invincibility—

THWACK.

He fell to the ground.

“Shit, Libby! You just totally cracked his head open with Greg’s lacrosse stick!”

“Oh. My. Godzilla! Hey, are you okaaay? Are you aliiive?”

“He’s super cute. We should take him home and nurse him back to health. Like Florence Nightingale. Libby, we can finally have a threesome!”

“Are you aliiive?”

Max opened his eyes and immediately started running again. He didn’t get five feet before a pair of plywood-like arms circled his chest and tackled him back to the ground. This time, it hurt. Concrete was unforgiving a second time. An ant ventured near his nose then stopped, stroking its antennae as if preparing for the feast of Max’s impending carcass. A mouth came down right against his ear, panting. Large, cold hands flipped him over and Max found himself staring into the eyes of the giant.

The movies had it all wrong. 

Your life didn’t flash before your eyes as you’re about to die. It’s all the other little things surrounding you: the size of the moon that night; the intoxicated laughter swirling with a particular hip-hop song blasting from one of the frat houses; the purple high-tops of a girl as she perched on the shoulders of her potential one-night stand. 

And the hazel eyes of the giant staring back at him. Even in the dark, they stood out like never-ending forests in autumn.

Max Trellis-Tan was quite possibly about to face death soon. Not by an axe murderer, but by a two-hundred-pound basketball player with a face that belonged to a Shakespearean hero. Gallant. And also: incredibly angry. His angel of death. “Before you kill me, can I get a kiss?” he asked.

 

About the Author 

Gay romance for readers who enjoy sweet with heat, smart humor, and an ensemble cast of colorful characters.

 

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Postscript by Anne Barwell #kindleunlimited #giveaway

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title:  Postscript (Kedgetown, Book 1)

Author:  Anne Barwell

Publisher: LaceDragon Publishing

Cover Artist: T.L. Bland

Release Date: February 7, 2023

Genres: M/M romance, Paranormal, Dual Timeline (contemporary & historical), Psychic Powers, mystery 

Tropes: Small town romance, sweet with heat, magical bookshop

Themes: Family, found family

Heat Rating: 3 flames        

Length:  50 000 words/125 pages

It is book 1 in the series. There are references to a wider shared world, but the reader doesn’t need to have read them. Two of the MCs are new to the supernatural world so are introduced to it through the course of the story. 

It does not end on a cliffhanger.

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A magical bookshop holds the keys.

 

Blurb

Kedgetown Book 1 

A magical bookshop holds the keys.

When Mason Chynoweth inherits an old house in small-town New Zealand, he hopes to discover what happened to his great-great uncle Lewis after he returned from the war in 1945. Mason’s first encounter with the property is thankfully reassuring—his sensitive psychic powers aren’t triggered and he has a calm sense of coming home.

Elijah Whitaker arrives in Kedgetown for an extended visit with his aunts. He’s quickly drawn to Mason and offers to help him try to find some answers in the dusty old house. It soon becomes clear that Mason is keeping secrets, but Elijah has a few secrets of his own. Like his closely guarded knowledge of the hidden supernatural world, and the fact that many of the townspeople are psi and supernaturals. 

What is the connection between the house and Postscript, the town’s enigmatic bookshop? Mason’s glimpses of the past give some clues, but not enough to make sense of the puzzle.   

When a hidden journal comes to light, the true story of Lewis’ journey is revealed, and his path and Mason and Elijah’s begin to intertwine. 

 

Excerpt 

“Kedgetown has always prided itself on being welcoming.” Annalise interrupted as though Mason hadn’t spoken. “It’s part of its magic.”

Elijah choked on his mouthful of gravy. Mason was a stranger. They didn’t talk about the town or its history in front of anyone who hadn’t grown up here. Or make comments that might lead to awkward questions. If Mason decided to make his home here and settle in the old house, Elijah definitely would not stick around. He’d had enough of lying about who he was.

“Are you okay?” Mason put down his fork, concerned.

“Yeah.” Elijah shot his aunts a glare. What were they up to? He didn’t believe their innocent expressions for a moment. “Went down the wrong way.”

“What do you do for a living, Mason, dear?” Annalise moved the conversation along.

“I work in IT. Data entry mainly.” Mason shrugged. “It’s not very exciting, but it pays the bills, and I can do it from home.” He paused. “Which at the moment is Invercargill, but if the house pans out, it is something I could do from anywhere.”

“Mason likes the house so far, and I suspect it’s mutual. But, as I said, there’s a lot of work to do first.” Annalise got up from the table, retrieved the casserole dish, and placed it between Mason and Elijah. “You boys still look hungry. Help yourselves if you want more.”

“Thanks.” Elijah spooned more onto his plate. He’d forgotten what a good cook his aunt was. “Is your family in Invercargill?”

“My parents are, but the rest of my family live on the West Coast. My sister lives in Greytown, so she’s only an hour away, although she’s only visited Kedgetown once.”

Mason waited until Elijah had finished, then reached for the serving spoon at the same time Elijah handed it to him. Their fingers brushed. Mason went rigid. All colour drained from his face. He looked like he’d seen a ghost.

Elijah glanced at Rilla, who was behind Mason. She shrugged.

The serving spoon clattered to the table.

“Mason?” Elijah pushed back his chair to go to Mason.

Annalise laid a warning hand on Elijah’s arm. “Give him a moment to come back to us. Perhaps a cup of tea would be a good idea. For later.”

A moment later, Mason gasped for breath. “I saw… what….” He glanced around the table.

“It’s a very old serving spoon,” Annalise said. “With a lot of history. It was a wedding present from an old friend. I’m not exactly sure of its origins.”

Mason relaxed a little. “I’m sorry I don’t mean to be rude.” He massaged his temples. “I have a… headache. Thank you for the lovely meal. I’ll see you in the morning.”

He stood and bolted, footsteps loud against the wood of the stairs to his bedroom. He closed the door behind him.

Elijah stared after him. “What the hell?”

“Tea, I’m thinking.” Rilla sounded thoughtful and more than a little smug. “The special one you used to make for me.”

“Definitely.” Annalise’s eyes glowed gold, and she smiled. “I suspected as much after we met his sister last Christmas, but this is even better than we thought.”

“Huh?” Elijah glanced from one aunty to the other. “What are you up to?”

“Us? We’re looking after our visitors like any good host would.” Annalise walked over to the kitchen to put the kettle on. “Help me clean up, will you? And then you can take Mason a nice cup of tea.”

 

 

About the Author 

Anne Barwell lives in Wellington, New Zealand. She shares her home with kitty siblings Byron and Marigold, who are already running the house and causing havoc. 

Anne works in a library, is an avid reader and watcher of a wide range of genres, and is constantly on the look-out for more hours in her day. She likes to write in series and even so called one shots seem to breed more plot bunnies. Her writing is like her reading – across a range of genres, although her favourites are paranormal, fantasy, SF, and historical. Music often plays a part in her stories and/or her characters are musicians.

She also hosts and reviews for other authors, and writes monthly blog posts for Love Bytes.  She is the co-founder of the New Zealand Rainbow Romance writers, and a member of RWNZ.   Her books have received honourable mentions five times, reached the finals four times—one of which was for best gay book—and been a runner up in the Rainbow Awards.  

 

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Facebook group  | The Sleepless City Website  |  The Sleepless City FB Group 

 

Giveaway 

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Third Time Lucky by Aurora Crane #kindleunlimited #giveaway

RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Third Time Lucky

Author and Publisher: Aurora Crane

Cover Artist: Cormar Covers

Release Date: January 28, 2023

Genre: Contemporary MM romance

Tropes: Friends to lovers, bi-awakening

Heat Rating:  4 flames

Length: 80 000 words

It is part of the Chain Reaction universe but can be read as a standalone. It is a HEA

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Buy Links – Available in Kindle Unlimited

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Blurb

Trust didn’t always go both ways, and Grady Donehue learned that the hard way. He hadn’t learned better after the first betrayal, but he wasn’t going to make the same mistake a third time. Striking up a strange friendship with the equally strange—and straight—soldier, Lake, who had sunshine in his eyes? Grady could do that. He could even handle helping Lake figure out he might not be so straight after all, in a very hands-on way. But falling in love? No, thanks.

Lake McKenna has spent his whole life absolutely confident in who he is and what he wants. Even when the picture-perfect future he’d always envisioned seemed further away than ever, none of his plans included another man. But the more time Lake spends with his new friend: grumpy and sneaky-sexy detective, Grady, the more he thinks that maybe what he really needs is something different to what he always imagined.

Neither man was prepared for the other, but Lake is nothing if not flexible. Doubt isn’t part of his make-up. He knows how much more incredible they could be together; if only Grady could see it too. Grady has to decide if Lake is worth risking his heart again, and whether he’s brave enough to see if it really is third time lucky.

Third Time Lucky is an 80,000-word MM romance. It is a bi-awakening, friends to lovers romance with low angst and high feels. It is set in the Chain Reaction universe but can be read as a standalone.

 

Excerpt

“Is there a reason you don’t like your house?” Grady asked.

It was a fair question, since they hadn’t spent a lot of time in the last few months at Lake’s, even though they’d spent so many evenings together.

Lake didn’t answer at first, staring out at the dozens of people milling about like ants with a purpose. “It’s empty,” he said quietly. “I bought it when my grandpa died about ten years ago, from my half of the inheritance. There was a lot of space for a family, and a pool, and a big yard for a dog. I fixed it up using money I got from a really long deployment.” He stared down at his hands. “I guess I thought it would be filled by now.” He couldn’t quite smother the feeling of failure when he thought about all the personal accomplishments that he hadn’t ticked off yet. As though his life were nothing more than a checklist that he had to work his way down. He knew that wasn’t right, but it slithered in there, anyway.

“It’s okay to not have found the person you want to make a family with yet,” Grady said softly. “Sometimes it takes longer than we’d like, but when it’s right, you’ll know.”

“I would never have pegged you for such a romantic.”

“Don’t tell anyone. And stop trying to dodge.”

Lake sighed. He knew, logically, that Grady was right. And he had dated a few people over those years that he’d thought maybe, but nothing had ever panned out. “It just feels big when I’m there by myself. Even with the TV on the silence gets to me. I like your house.” He shrugged. “It’s small, and cosy, and it has you in it.” He didn’t know if that admission was allowed, or what it even meant, when it felt like so much more than he could find the words for.

“Lake…”

“I know we haven’t known each other long, but friendships are like that sometimes, aren’t they? I like being around you.”

Grady didn’t respond and Lake awkwardly fiddled with the beaded and leather bracelets around his wrist.

“Do you have food at your house?” Grady asked, eventually. That hadn’t been what Lake had expected him to say. He’d been bracing himself for rejection. Lake had gotten too clingy, wanted to spend too much time with him, and it was time to part ways. Lake would have understood. He knew that he was a lot to handle and sometimes he figured the only reason Felix and Zach had stuck around so long was that they’d had so long to get used to it.

“I guess it depends on what you mean by food?” Lake replied. “Why?”

“Because I like your house, Lake,” Grady said patiently. “And you shouldn’t have to feel like you can’t be there.”

“I—what? You like my house?”

“Well, yeah. It’s big, and it’s inviting, and it has you in it.” He paused and then turned to Lake with a grin that had Lake’s mouth going dry. “And it has more than one bed. Just in case.”

“All of my spare beds are being fumigated,” Lake said, hoping he didn’t sound as desperate as he felt. He didn’t give a fuck if it was weird; he liked waking up next to Grady, liked how big Grady was and how much space he took up on the mattress, the heat that radiated off him in waves. There was no mistaking he wasn’t alone when Grady was with him.

 

 

About the Author 

Aurora Crane is an Australian author with a particular love for books featuring poly relationships. You can always find a healthy serving of banter, snark and heat in her books, along with impossible men falling in love, even if sometimes it takes them a little while to get there! She has an appreciation for men in suits and frequently spreads that love in the Facebook group she shares with her muse, fellow Aussie, and co-writer Briar Kearney. When not in the writing cave—a rarity to see this author out of her natural habitat—she can be found playing video games, building Lego sets, or hanging out with her fiancé and their menagerie of animals. 

 

Social Media Links

Facebook Profile  |  Facebook Group  |  Instagram

 

Giveaway 

Enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway for a chance to win

one of three ebooks from the author’s backlist

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

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