COVER REVEAL and GIVEAWAY: Heloise West’s His Dark Reflection

Pretty covers! Pretty covers!  Take a gander at this one:
Lovely colours. I really like how that sky melts up into the purple at the top. Very nice!

Disgraced FBI agent Nick Truman has failed to save his sister, held hostage by a drug cartel until he could give them Alex Crow, who eluded him. His epic downfall lands him in witness protection, where he plays by the rules and keeps to himself. But the murder of his neighbor brings danger to his door. He unexpectedly finds himself the champion of innocents and helplessly attracted to the homicide detective in charge of the case.

This can’t end well.

Homicide Detective Hank Axelrod is good at digging out secrets, maybe because he hides a big one of his own. He also suspects his husband has one foot out of the door of their marriage and the specter of single life looms unpleasantly on the horizon.

A murder resembling another brings Nick into his world, a man who claims to be a mystery writer looking for a real life resource. Hank’s instincts say he’s more than that, and he’s rarely wrong.

Torn between the errant soon-to-be-ex husband and the distracting, sexy stranger, Hank needs to focus all his attention on his murder case before he becomes the next victim.

Title: His Dark Reflection
Author: Heloise West
Series: Heart and Haven #3
Release Date: September 12th 2017
Genre: Gay Romance, mystery
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/series/178487-heart-and-haven

 

Click here to pre-order His Dark Reflection

 

It was different when he’d wanted information from Nick. Hank wanted to confide in Nick, like with the partner he used to have before he got stuck with Burgess. Like Nick knew what he was talking about—could be trusted.

“Are you a cop?”

Nick touched his fingers to his mouth. He must have needed a cigarette, if the telltale scent of tobacco was any indication. “I answered that one already. Nope.”

That nope was annoying. “Fed? PI? Security?” Hank threw out a few more. “Reporter? Work for the criminal court?”

“I drive limos,” Nick said with a languid shrug. Glancing over his shoulder at the impatient date, he held up two fingers.

“Oh, a fan, are you? Watch CSI, NCIS—a lookie-loo?”

By the tightening of his mouth into a sneer, that pissed Nick off. “I’m no cop wannabe. I don’t watch the idiot box.”

Well, shit. The pain in Nick St. Cloud’s brown eyes was real. Deep. Hank gave him a minute to recover, watching him rub his wrists, then naked arms. It gave Hank a thrill, as if he could feel the man’s heated skin on his own.

“Don’t be a bastard, Detective.”

“Well? I can run a background check on you in a heartbeat.”

Nick tried to hide it, but a flare of panic made his pupils dilate. “And if I say I’m not that extremely guilty guy who hangs around helping the know-nothing cops, you’ll believe me?”

“You’re something. What is it, I wonder?”

Don’t tease the cat, Hank.

“Okay.” A bead of sweat dripped past a pale white scar at his hairline, the only imperfection Hank could see. “I’m a writer, not a journalist. I mean, I’m a mystery writer.”

“Published?”

“Nope, not yet. So maybe you can be a resource, you know? I can do a ride-along with you or something.” Nick looked away, back toward Probably and gave him a nod. Probably picked up his sweater from the back of the chair and stood.

“Sure,” Hank agreed.

“Wait, what—really?”

Hank held still a moment, beer glass halfway to his mouth, unsure what he was seeing in Nick’s intelligent eyes. Hope? Excitement? Fear? “We can talk about procedure—I’ve got some good stories. But I don’t know about the ride-along at this point. My partner’s a prick.”

“But we can meet…and talk.” Nick stood and dug into his pocket for his wallet.

“I’ve got this.” Hank waved it away. “You want the book to be accurate, right? It’s good PR too.”

Nick’s smile curled Hank’s toes.

“On me next time. We can meet here or wherever.” Nick hovered, as if Hank had held out something sweet to him, and he was afraid to take it.

Probably cleared his throat loudly.

“Have a good night, Nick,” Hank said. “We’ll talk. You have my number.”

What did you just do?

 

For the chance to win an ebook of His Dark Reflection, click here.

 

Heloise West, when not hunched over the keyboard plotting love and mayhem, dreams about moving to a villa in Tuscany. She loves history, mysteries, and romance of all flavors. She travels and gardens with her partner of thirteen years, and their home overflows with books, cats, art, and red wine.

 

Links:
Blog https://velvetpanic2.wordpress.com/
Website http://heloisewest.wix.com/heloisewest
Facebook https://www.facebook.com/heloise.west.1
Twitter https://twitter.com/velvetpanic
Pinterest https://www.pinterest.com/heloisewest/
Tumblr http://heloisewest.tumblr.com/
Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8188216.Heloise_West

 

 

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Louise Lyons’ “What’s Up, Pussycat” released – FREE!

I’m very please to have Louise Lyons popping in here today to share news of her latest release, the novella “What’s Up, Pussycat”, which is available free at all retailers.

 

Release date: July 7, 2017
Length: 24,300 words
Cover Design: Simon Searle

 

Finley Harrington despairs of ever being able to move on after the death of Andrew, the love of his life. When he spots an advertisement for auditions for Cats, the last musical Andrew performed in, Finley acts on the spur of the moment and calls for an appointment to audition.

Much to Fin’s surprise, he gets the part he hopes for, but during his struggles with stage-fright, and the teasing of a fellow actor, Karl Rogers, he wonders if he’s made a huge mistake. But Karl’s irritating persona hides a different person inside, and when Fin gets to know him, he develops a surprising attraction to him.

Could Karl be the person to help Fin move on from the past, or is he destined to remain alone?

 

 

Amazon UK  |  Amazon US  |    Smashwords   |    Barnes & Noble  |  Kobo

 

The members of the cast began arriving half an hour later when the three of us were warming up, and my impression of the first man through the door was one of shock. I’d seen Karl Rogers who played Rum Tum Tugger from a distance a few times when I attended the shows in Leicester, but never without his cat costume. He was tall—at least six feet—and his shock of peroxide hair and startling green eyes drew everyone’s attention. His lycra leggings emphasized a large package, and a bright orange cropped T-shirt and matching ballet shoes completed his outfit. He charged into the room like a whirlwind.

“So! Who do we have here?” he shouted, looming over Annette and me, where we stood stretching our hamstrings. “You look weirdly familiar.” He jabbed a finger in my direction, before turning his attention to Annette. “What a pretty kitty. What’s your name, then, darling?” He pronounced the endearment “dahling” and I cringed. I hoped the rest of the cast weren’t like Karl. I’d met a couple of them, but I preferred to keep my distance and monopolize Andrew when the shows were over.

“Annette,” the girl said. “And that’s Finley. The other guy is James.”

Karl spun around to look at James, gave him a cursory nod, then turned back to me. He took a step closer, forcing me to look up.

“Cute!” Karl exclaimed. “Cat got your tongue?” He proceeded to shriek with laughter at his lame joke, and my face heated under the scrutiny.

“I’ve not had the chance to get a word in,” I blurted, and immediately cringed. My voice tended to sound more refined when I was irritated. I couldn’t help my parents or the school I’d gone to, but for the past few years I’d done my best to shake off the accent and sound more like everyone else. I knew Karl would say something, even before he opened his mouth again.

“Ooh, someone swallowed a silver spoon, didn’t they? Wait. Finley? Finley Harrington? Golly, I’m surprised Mummy and Daddy let their little boy do something as lower class as performing on the stage. Shouldn’t you be a lawyer or a doctor or something?” Karl spoke in an exaggerated tone, and my face burned.

“Wow, someone loves himself.” James moved to my side and cocked an eyebrow at Karl.

“I have a sense of humor. You should try it some time.” Karl laughed, and James scowled at him. The boisterous dancer ignored him, and draped an arm around Annette’s shoulders. “You never told me your name, Kitty.”

“Yes, I did. It’s Annette.”

 

Louise Lyons comes from a family of writers. Her mother has a number of poems published in poetry anthologies, her aunt wrote poems for the church, and her grandmother sparked her inspiration with tales of fantasy.

Louise first ventured into writing short stories at the grand old age of eight, mostly about little girls and ponies. She branched into romance in her teens, and MM romance a few years later, but none of her work saw the light of day until she discovered FanFiction in her late twenties. Posting stories based on some of her favourite movies, provoked a surprisingly positive response from readers. This gave Louise the confidence to submit some of her work to publishers, and made her take her writing “hobby” more seriously.

Louise lives in the UK, about an hour north of London, with a mad dog called Casper, and a collection of tropical fish and tarantulas. She works in the insurance industry by day, and spends every spare minute writing. She is a keen horse-rider, and loves to run long-distance. Some of her best writing inspiration comes to her, when her feet are pounding the open road. She often races home afterward, and grabs pen and paper to make notes.

Louise has always been a bit of a tomboy, and one of her other great loves is cars and motorcycles. Her car and bike are her pride and job, and she loves to exhibit the car at shows, and take off for long days out on the bike, with no one for company but herself.

Social Media

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/louiselyonsauthor

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/louiselyons013

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/louiselyons013

Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/louiselyons013

Blog: http://www.louiselyonsauthor.com

Email: louiselyons013@gmail.com

 

 

51 Sleepless Nights with Tobias Wade

I think this may be the first time I’ve hosted a horror writer here on the blog, and I’m delighted to welcome Tobias Wade, along with some info about his latest release of 51 marvellously diverse short stories. With such a range, there’ll be something here for everyone, and isn’t that a gorgeously evocative cover? I love it!

A diverse collection of horror stories including the grizzly confessions of a serial killer, parallel dimensions, becoming trapped in a virtual world, and encountering ancient aliens buried beneath the Earth’s crust. Demons, monsters, psychopaths, undead, mad experiments and paranormal – no matter what makes your heart race, you’re guaranteed to face your fear with these terrifying stories.

Publication: anthology of short stories (51 of them!)
Wordcount: 102,000
Release Date: 19 June 2017

Goodreads Page

 

51 Sleepless Nights is available for sale at Amazon in ebook and paperback formats:

Amazon.com |  Amazon.co.uk

 

I felt her arms around me, but she wasn’t trying to choke me or restrain me. She was… hugging me. It was such an alien sensation that I immediately opened my eyes. That’s when I saw them. Hundreds – no thousands of gossamer spider webs holding up her body like a marionette doll. I recoiled immediately, and she let me without the slightest resistance. 

The spiders were everywhere. Crawling across her face, through her hair. When she opened her mouth, I saw more of them inside her, pulling the threads to work her jaw. Her throat pulsed, and I knew more must be further down to vibrate her vocal chords. 


“But he’s never going to hurt you again. You have our word.” 


I was too shocked to fully understand what was happening. The alarm in my mind wouldn’t stop, and I still felt like I was about to pay for my rebellion. I didn’t want to stare, but couldn’t look away. I didn’t want to go and see, but my feet carried me there anyway. 


I opened Jeff’s room and found him on his bed. His hands and feet were bound with countless loops of spiderweb. More of it was across his face, tying his tongue securely to the roof of his mouth. His skin was perforated with a thousand holes, and spiders were crawling in and out of them as they carefully partitioned and wrapped each piece for consumption. His eyes blinked at me, although I don’t know if that was a sign of life or simply the successful attachment of yet another internal strand. I quietly closed the door and let them finish their work.
-My Mother the Spider Queen

 

 

 

Former neuroscience researcher, born again horror writer. During my studies, it struck me as odd that I could learn so much about why humans behave without understanding the intricacies of human nature. It occurred to me that I learned more about the depths of human experience from reading Dostoyevsky than I ever had from my text books, and I was inspired to write.

 

Find me at:
Website – My books, info, and horror blog. New stories every MondayWednesday, Friday.
Facebook – Public fanpage where I share my writing and latest updates.Books:

51 Sleepless Nights – Collection of my horror stories.
The Last Man – Fantasy series. First two books free for new email subscribers.
Wings of Renewal – Dragon stories for a new world.

 

Burning Boundaries with Bellora Quinn and Sadie Rose Bermingham

 

 

Mari Gale’s life has been a whirlwind since meeting Jake Chivis. A new job prospect and his mother’s health preoccupy him, so when Jake invites him on a date he’s ready to cut loose. Their night out turns into a nightmare when a fire breaks out in the basement of the bar and they barely escape.

Soon Jake learns that the horrific accident is being investigated as a possible homicide, and it’s not the only case. Detective Inspector Cordiline of the London Met hints at spontaneous human combustion, but as far as Jake knows, SHC doesn’t exist.

When Mari looks into a group called Birthright, he finds a connection to the victims of the fires and Jake risks himself to go undercover at the shadowy organization. The race is on to determine the truth before Jake becomes the next target.

Publisher: Pride Publishing
Authors: Bellora Quinn and Sadie Rose Bermingham
Cover Artist: Emmy Ellis
Length: 103,000 Words
Format: eBook
General Release: TODAY 4th July
Pairing: MM
Heat Level: 4 out of 5
Genre(s): Contemporary, Erotic Romance, Fantasy – Urban & Magical Beings, Mystery & Thriller, Paranormal, Paranormal – Psychic Talents

Goodreads

Price: $5.99

 

Elemental Evidence Series: Former Detective Jake Chivis is a Fire Elemental who uses psychometry to see the past. Doctor Ilmarinen Gale is an Air Elemental, a human/cybernetic interface, able to infiltrate even the toughest information systems. Together they find out just how potent a combination Fire and Air can be when it comes to solving crimes.

Amid murder, conspiracy and a world that views them with suspicion, and sometimes contempt, Jake and Mari circumvent the conventional. While the police aren’t always appreciative of their methods they can’t deny the results.

When they aren’t busy consulting for the police, figuring one another out is their next big mystery. One that proves as frustrating as it is passionate. Between hunting killers and avoiding competing government agencies that want the two of them working on their side, they just might have enough time for love.

Facebook page for Elemental Evidence

 

Was that flirting? Was he flirting with the guy? Jake tried to rein those thoughts in but he couldn’t help it. Mari had a habit of flirting, but it had never bugged Jake before. Jesus, they’d managed to go to one bar for an hour and already he was devolving into Neanderthal territory. He realized something else. It had never really bothered him when he and Alex had gone out and his ex had spent all night coming on to strangers. Then again, he’d known Alex was doing it to get a rise out of him. That was not Mari’s way, at all.

“You want another drink?” Jake asked, by way of keeping himself from hauling Mari out of there and grilling him about whether he wanted to sleep with Mr. Whips and Tattoos. They had to step to one side as a sweating, agitated-looking guy pushed by them on the stairs in an obvious hurry to get down to the basement for some chastisement. Though he looked chastised enough already, in Jake’s opinion.

“If you do,” Mari said, then exhaled a huff that might have been regret and might have been relief. “Unless, of course, you just want to put me over your shoulder and carry me out, Mr. Caveman. I wasn’t giving him the come-on. So you can stop looking daggers. And don’t deny it.” He pointed a slender finger at Jake as he opened his mouth. “I could see you thinking it. Yes, he’s very cute, but he’s not really my type. I do like his toy box though.”

Jake snapped his mouth closed then pushed a hand through his hair and let out a sigh of his own. He had always pitied guys that acted like possessive jerks and here he was being as transparent as glass, all but snarling at anyone who got too close to Mari. “I’m sorry. I was aiming not to be obvious. I’ll try and refrain from clubbing you over the head and dragging you out by the hair.” He managed a sheepish grin.

“In that case, it would be my pleasure to have another drink with you, Chivis.” Mari chuckled, slipping a hand around the nape of his neck and towing him in for a brief, firm kiss.

They made their way back up into the bar and as they were weaving their way through the crowd, Jake heard someone shout, then screaming coming from the direction of the basement.

The red and gold lighting seemed to be flickering and Mari yelled, “Can you smell something burning?”

Jake noticed the smell just as Mari was saying it, and turned his head. A curl of pale smoke was winding up from the basement stairway, not thick but noticeable.

“Shit!” He grabbed Mari’s arm. “Get out of here. Hurry.”

Jake gave him a push toward the front exit then shoved through the crowd, trying to get to the stairs.

 

Pride Publishing  |  Amazon  |  Apple  |  Barnes & Noble  |  Kobo

 

Bellora Quinn:  Originally hailing from Detroit Michigan, Bellora now resides on the sunny Gulf Coast of Florida where a herd of Dachshunds keeps her entertained. She got her start in writing at the dawn of the internet when she discovered PbEMs (Play by email) and found a passion for collaborative writing and steamy hot erotica. Soap Opera like blogs soon followed and eventually full novels. The majority of her stories are in the M/M genre with urban fantasy or paranormal settings.

Website  |  Twitter 

Sadie Rose Bermingham: A storyteller since before she started school, Sadie also enjoys reading, photography, live music and long walks on the beach. Sadie has worked as a bookseller, a pedigree editor for the racing industry and a local and family history researcher. Originally from the north of England, she has been working her way across the UK ever since. She currently resides on the south east coast with her long term partner, where she hopes to buy a mobile home and establish a whippet farm.

Website  |  Twitter

 

Facebook page for Elemental Evidence

J Scott Coatsworth and “The Great North”: Review

You know, I always thought of Scott as a temperate zone kind of guy; a Californian sun lover, even. And yet here he is, talking about the icy desolation of the Great North. And shivering, likely. I know I am, but that’s the Great British summer for you: hot sun one day, November-like rain the next.

Anyhow, I’m delighted about Scott’s visit here today. Scroll down for a thinky post on the rewards of writing from Scott, and for a review of The Great North from me.

 

Dwyn is a young man in the small, isolated town of Manicouga, son of the Minstor, who is betrothed to marry Kessa in a few weeks’ time.

Mael is shepherding the remains of his own village from the north, chased out by a terrible storm that destroyed Land’s End.

Both are trying to find their way in a post-apocalyptic world. When the two meet, their love and attraction may change the course of history.

Author: J. Scott Coatsworth
Publisher: Mischief Corner Books
Cover Artist: Freddy MacKay
Length: 34K
Format: eBook
Release Date: 6/14/17
Pairing: MM
Price: 3.99
Genre: MM, Sci Fi, Fantasy, Romance, Myths, Legends, Gods, Post-Apocalyptic

The Great North was inspired by St. Dwynwen’s Day, also known as Welsh Valentines Day.

 

Mischief Corner Books  |   Amazon  |  Kobo  |  iBooks   |   B&N  |  Smashwords.

 

Is This Thing On?

As writers, we have two main jobs. Tell interesting stories about fascinating people in cool places, and then promo the shit out of those same stories in the hopes that someone will actually read them.

It can be a thankless job. Each novel represents hundreds of hours spent in solitude in our writer caves, and is just as likely to be greeted by a collective “ho hum” or a torrent of abuse as it is to be welcomed with flowers and songs of praise.

But there is one thing worse than being told your novel is boring, or derivative, or full of obvious plot holes.

It’s when you are ignored entirely.

For the release of “The Great North,” I am writing ten guest posts to entice readers to give me and the story a try. I am witty, and gregarious in these posts—your best writer friend. I spend hours coming up with the perfect topics, the best presentation, the ideal meter to make them sound sharp and polished.

Does anyone read these posts? I hope so. But there’s just no way to know.

It’s the same with our books. Yes, we get the occasional Goodreads or Amazon review. There are some signs of life out there in the reading world, but still, many folks read our work and never say a peep about it.

Sometimes, though, you get lucky.

I was at GayRomLit last year, and was approached for the first time ever by someone who absolutely loved one of my stories. It made my heart sing, and fueled my yearning to write for months.

Then a couple weeks ago, a friend told me my stories had given him the courage to finally propose to his boyfriend. I’m still floating on cloud nine after that one.

And finally, someone at Sac Pride this last weekend told me they read and loved my serial story, River City.

So you see, sometimes the mic is on. Sometimes our words reach out into the world and change things in ways we may never know or see.

For me, that’s good enough.

Scott

 

“We celebrate Dwyn’s Day as a testament to true love and sacrifice. It’s a remembrance of the way things were and the way they’ve come to be. In the end, let it be a reminder that every one of us has the power to change the course of events through love.”

—Dillon Cooper, New Gods and Monsters, Twenty years After Dwyn

The gray clouds scudded by overhead, blowing in quickly from the east.

Dwyn shivered and pulled on his woolen cap. It was cold out, unusual for so early in the fall. The rains had been heavy this season, the wettest in a generation, and Circle Lake was close to overflowing its banks. If he stretched to look over the rows of corn plants, he could see the waters lapping at the shore far below, as if hungry to consume his village of Manicouga.

His father had consulted the elders, some of whom had seen more than fifty summers, and everyone agreed things were changing. Whether that augured good or ill was anyone’s guess.

He shrugged and moved along the row of plants, breaking off ears of corn and throwing them into the jute sack that hung from his shoulder.

Ahead of him, two of his age-mates, Declan and Baia, were working their way down the next two rows.

Dwyn frowned. He got distracted easily, and he’d let the two of them get a jump on him. That wouldn’t do.

He redoubled his pace. He moved with focus and purpose, and soon he was closing the gap with his friends.

“Someone’s being chased by a lion,” Baia said with a laugh.

“Or a tiger.” Declan grinned, his nice smile only missing one tooth, lost to a fight with one of the Beckham brothers the year before.

Dwyn grinned. “Or a bear?” Dwyn only knew lions and tigers from the fairy tale his mother used to tell them, “The Girl and the Aus.” He had no idea what an Aus was, either.

Bears he knew. The hunters occasionally brought one home, and old Alesser had a five-line scar across his wrinkled face that he claimed came from one of the beasts.

A shout went up from ahead of them. Dwyn craned his neck to see what the ruckus was, but he couldn’t make out anything. “What’s going on?”

Declan, who was half a head taller, looked toward the commotion. “Hard to tell. Something down by the road.”

Dwyn laid down his sack carefully and ran up the hill to one of the old elms that dotted the field. He climbed into the tree, scurrying up through the leaves and branches until he had a clear view of the Old Road. It ran from up north to somewhere down south, maybe near the ruins of old Quebec if the merchant tales held any truth. Hardly anyone from Manicouga ever followed it, but occasionally traders would follow it to town, bringing exotic wares and news from the other villages that were scattered up and down its length.

They swore it went all the way down to the Heat, the great desert that had consumed much of the world after the Reckoning.

“What’s going on down there?” Baia called from below.

Dwyn tried to make sense of it. “There are three wagons coming down the pass. They’re loaded up with all sorts of things. They don’t look like traders though.”

The first of the horse-drawn wagons had just reached the field above the main township. It stopped, and someone hopped off to talk with the villagers who had gathered from the fields.

“We need to get down there,” Dwyn said, scrambling down the tree trunk. “Something’s happening.” Nothing new ever happened in Manicouga, and he wasn’t going to miss it.

He grabbed his sack and sprinted toward the Old Road, not waiting to see if Declan and Baia followed.

 

I’ve always thought that in a post-apocalyptic Earth the likelihood of large, relatively well-organised societies a la Hunger Games is rather remote. We’re far more likely to devolve into small, enclosed communities almost mediaeval in their feudal isolationism and—because man is always looking for proof that he isn’t to blame but someone else must be, and religion is always handy to provide good targets—tending to fundamentalist beliefs. J Scott Coatsworth evidently agrees and I found his set up of insular, almost chokingly-small communities to be both realistic and well portrayed. Scott is always stellar at world-building. It’s one of his strengths and it plays out well here.

I enjoyed the principal story of Dwyn and Mael, young men from two such communities forced into contact by the onset of Ice-Age level bad weather. The narrative is excellent: two intense, concentrated cultures clashing. Their attraction to each other is doomed from the start, really, and they have some challenges to face. This is where the conflict lies and could have been richly mined. But this is a novella, not a full length novel, and I don’t think their personalities and characters had quite enough room to expand and grow, or the situation to be fully exploited. When the author does write something longer, his characters have that room and his plots are richer. Read his Skythane to show that.

I also liked the parallel story from hundreds of years earlier, where it’s clear Dwyn’s settlement was founded by the family of a gay couple. Given the later homophobia of Dwyn’s society, the irony is delicious and I grinned when that strand ended with the arrival of a minister of the Tripartite God. That was nicely written and nicely done. Neat.

Where I did part company with the tale was the deus-ex-machina climax. I’m still wrapping my head around the sudden intervention of old gods made manifest. And as the old gods have a tendency to do, they interfere directly in the lives of Dwyn and Mael. I’m a classicist. I wrote countless essays at Uni on the Greek dramatists and their portrayal of a time when mortals and gods shared the same world (a situation usually to the detriment of mortals, by the way), and much as I adore Euripides, this aspect of the story did not work for me. We’ve moved on from the more simplistic view of life that the ancients had, where everything had to be explained in terms of the anger or favour of the gods. We’re in a place now where mankind should be taking responsibility for itself, and (I stress this is a personal reaction) the gods stepping in felt like a regressive step, pulling us even further back out of enlightenment into something darker and primeval. I guess that what I’d hoped for was a tale of humans overcoming challenges and conflict because of their own inner strengths (and weaknesses!) and what I ended up with was something only possible because the gods bent the rules. In that aspect of the tale, I’m a little disappointed, and I do think that story would have been stronger and richer without it.

Anna

 

 

Scott spends his time between the here and now and the what could be. Enticed into fantasy and sci fi by his mom at the tender age of nine, he devoured her Science Fiction Book Club library. But as he grew up, he wondered where all the people like him were in the books he was reading.

He decided that it was time to create the kinds of stories he couldn’t find at his local bookstore. If there weren’t gay characters in his favorite genres, he would remake them to his own ends.

His friends say Scott’s mind works a little differently – he sees relationships between things that others miss, and gets more done in a day than most folks manage in a week. He loves to transform traditional sci fi, fantasy, and contemporary worlds into something unexpected.

He runs both Queer Sci Fi and QueerRomance Ink with his husband Mark, sites that bring queer people together to promote and celebrate fiction that reflects their own lives.

Author Links:
Website: https://www.jscottcoatsworth.com
Facebook (personal): https://www.facebook.com/jscottcoatsworth
Facebook (author page): https://www.facebook.com/jscottcoatsworthauthor/
Twitter: https://www.facebook.com/jscoatsworth/
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8392709.J_Scott_Coatsworth
QueeRomance Ink: https://www.queeromanceink.com/mbm-book-author/j-scott-coatsworth/
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/J.-Scott-Coatsworth/e/B011AFO4OQ

Suzanne Jenkins’ “Second Chance”

SecondChanceRevealBanner

 

 

SecondChance

Just when life settles down to a dull roar for those people whom Pam holds closest to her heart, the pendulum swings in the opposite direction and everyone is tossed into the air. Who will they hold on to as they fall back to Earth?

Gladys finds the son she gave up at birth forty years ago; he’s a single fire fighter on Staten Island. At their first meeting, he sees Pam’s beautiful daughter, Lisa. Will it be love at first sight?

Big Ed leaves Gladys, his wife of almost forty years for Melody. The unexpected? Gladys falls into the arms of the eligible bachelor, Dave, owner of Organic Bonanza. Will it be a case of I don’t want her, you can’t have her?

And last but not least, Sandra starts up an unusual relationship with her late ex’s ex-wife, Jenna. But history might repeat itself; Sandra can not be trusted.

Second Chance is the fifteenth novel in the beloved Pam of Babylon series.

Title: Second Chance
Series: Pam of Babylon, Book 15
Author: Suzanne Jenkins
Publisher: Self-Published
Cover Artist: Tanya Shatseva
Release Date: July 3, 2017
Romance Genre(s): Contemporary
Pages: 300
View on Goodreads

 

 

July. Fire House A-89, in the northeast corner of Staten Island.

Early Saturday morning, as the sun rose, fire fighter Dale McGuire stripped off turnout gear and hung it to air out on a hook on the outside of his locker. Coming in from a call for a small brush fire at the side of the highway right before the Verrazano Bridge entrance, Dale looked forward to coffee, something to eat, and bed for a nap, in that order.

Grabbing a towel, he walked to the shower, whistling.

“McGuire is happy this morning,” his colleague, Paul shouted, coming on his shift.

“Yeah, because he gets to go home,” another firefighter called out.

Chuckling, Dale nodded. Life was so peaceful, if it weren’t for the fires he fought, the lives occasionally rescued, he’d have to consider getting a hobby just to prevent boredom from setting in. Mind a blank as he lathered up, he thought of getting home to his dog, Tilly. She’d be on the back of the couch, waiting for him.

“Jesus, buddy, I’m embarrassed to strip in front of you,” Paul said, pointing to Dale returning from the shower. “Look at this guy’s abs.”

Quickly pulling his towel up higher, Dale laughed. “You’re not my type,” he said over the hilarity. “I won’t watch you if it’ll help.”

Locker room banter took some of the pain the exhaustion the night shift firefighters experienced away. “See you Monday,” Dale said when he was dressed, grabbing his duffle bag.

He lived in the house his late parents’ left him on Todt Hill, within walking distance to the firehouse. Volunteering there during high school, he bypassed college, much to his parents’ chagrin, and took a full time position as a firefighter rather than go away to his father’s alma mater in Philadelphia.

“It’s an honorable position, Douglas,” his mother had said in Dale’s defense. “Don’t make yourself sick with disappointment.”

“I wanted our son to follow in my footsteps. A McGuire at Penn is a tradition.”

Twenty years later, they were both dead, a fatal car wreck snuffing out the lives of Dale’s favorite people. Walking up the hill, he glanced up at the imposing structure in the bright morning sun. It was a grand house, but too big for a single man approaching middle-age.

Parents gone almost three years, he’d taken over the house as his own and couldn’t imagine anyone else living there with him. The scariest part of that; he knew he was becoming so set in his ways that if he didn’t fall in love soon, it might be too late.

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA

Enter via the Rafflecopter below for your chance to win one of the following:

  • First prize: Pam of Babylon bracelet and eBook box set of novels 1-5 in the series
  • Second prize: eBook box set of novels 1-5 in the series
  • Third prize: e-copy of Pam of Babylon

The contest closes at midnight EST on June 9 and is open to entrants worldwide.

Good luck!

Enter here.

SuzanneJenkins

My books are all creations of a rich and sometimes devilish dream life. Don’t worry—you won’t see yourself in any of my books, but if you do, it’s just a coincidence…

In a former life, I was a registered nurse who worked in the Operating Room for many years. Prior to nursing school, I was an OR technician, and after working in the OR for over thirty-three years, I can’t stand the sight of blood!

I’ve been married to my high school sweetheart for forty-eight years. We have two children and seven grandchildren and are down to one dog, Oscar. We live in the isolated mountains of north San Diego county, rarely leaving the sanctuary. It’s a wonderful place to hide out and write. I’m a member of the Romance Writers of America and the RWA San Diego Chapter.

Connect with Suzanne

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Linked In | Pinterest

May 29
Loves Great Reads
A Fold in the Spine
Shh, I Am Reading
Amo & Sarah’s Book Corner
Just Us Book Blog
Red’s Romance Reviews

May 30
Books All Things Paranormal and Romance
Paranormal Palace of Pleasures
CelticLady’s Reviews
Books, Dreams, Life
Pink Lace & Silver Buckles

May 31
Kitty’s Book Spot
Tome Tender
Underneath the Covers
Literary Misfit

June 1
Anna Butler
LoveBound Books
A Naughty Book Fling
Reads and Treats

June 2
Ramblings of a Book Nerd
Liz’s Reading Life
Always Love Me Some Books
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Wicked Babes Blog Reviews
Abibliophobia Anonymous

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Helena Stone’s Equality

 

Love is love. But what if the fight for equality gets in the way of building a relationship?

Lorcan Barratt has never considered himself relationship material. After his parents made it perfectly clear they’d never welcome a partner of his into their home, he learned to love his own company and can’t imagine sharing his life with another. After a single passionate kiss with Eric Kavanagh—the night before he travels to Canada for three months—Lorcan’s no longer sure he wants to be on his own. The problem is, he has no idea what sharing his life with someone else might entail.

Eric Kavanagh grew up in a loving and supportive family and always assumed he’d end up in a committed relationship. Sure that he’s found the one, Eric doesn’t worry about the fact that Lorcan has no experience when it comes to love and relationships. They are good together, so what could possibly go wrong?

When both men get involved in the marriage equality referendum in Ireland, it appears to bring them even closer together until Lorcan’s insecurities get the upper hand and he shuts Eric out. Will the fight for a yes-vote cost them their relationship or will they be able to find a balance between the love they share and the need for equality?

Publisher: Pride Publishing
Length: 58,300 words
Dublin Virtues Series

 

 Pride Amazon US | Amazon UK

Links for other books in the series:
Patience (Book #1) Pride | Amazon US | Amazon UK
Renewal (Book #3) Pride | Amazon US | Amazon UK 

 

Win a $10 Amazon Gift card HERE

 

Helena Stone can’t remember a life before words and reading. After growing up in a household where no holiday or festivity was complete without at least one new book, it’s hardly surprising she now owns more books than shelf space while her Kindle is about to explode.

The urge to write came as a surprise. The realisation that people might enjoy her words was a shock to say the least. Now that the writing bug has well and truly taken hold, Helena can no longer imagine not sharing the characters in her head and heart with the rest of the world.

Having left the hustle and bustle of Amsterdam for the peace and quiet of the Irish Country side she divides her time between reading, writing, long and often wet walks with the dog, her part-time job in a library, a grown-up daughter and her ever loving and patient husband.

Helena can be found in the following places:
Website
Blog
Facebook
Facebook Author Page
Twitter
Goodreads
Amazon Author Page
Pinterest

Email: helenastoneauthor@gmail.com

 

Naming Rites – Gary Boelhower

This is a first for the blog, having a poet aboard. I freely admit my talents do not lie in poetry, and I’m in awe of those whose minds work in that direction. So it’s a pleasure to welcome Gary Boelhower here today to mark the publication of Naming Rites, his third collection of poems.

 

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This collection explores the ways we are named and branded with multiple identities, a clay vessel molded and imprinted from the inside and the outside by those who know us or think they do, by wounds, worries, stones, and nicknames, by place and absence, by teachers and traitors. Boelhower dares to name the body’s blows and pleasures and how they are celebrated in solitude and connection. His language soars with ecstasy and burrows into hidden places in the soul. His lyrics tell how the world’s pain lodges in the cells and how the fragrance of summer stars opens an aperture to healing. Boelhower is winner of the Foley Prize from America and the Midwest Book Award for his second collection Marrow, Muscle, Flight.

Title: Naming Rites
Author: Gary Boelhower
Release Date: May 16th 2017
Genre: Poetry
Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31944762-naming-rites

Reviews
Naming Rites is such a generous collection it offers both blessings and confessions, dirt and bread, miracles and explosions, cruelty and mercy, great blue herons who resemble monks and blue jays clowning around, a lover’s tender touch and the horrors of the nightly news. In second grade, Gary Boelhower admits, he won ‘the glow-in-the-dark statue of Mary,’ and his religious drive, now mature, is still alive in these poems. They aim for (and often achieve) not just a personal record but transubstantiation, transforming experience into wisdom, fear into freedom, language into song. Naming Rites is the autobiography of a soul, reaching out beyond the boundaries of the self. Bart Sutter, author of Cow Calls in Dalarna and Chester Creek Ravine: Haiku

Gary Boelhower’s poems resist convention and confinement even as they speak deeply of and from history, family, and community. The persona names and narrates himself into being as he chronicles profound and tender encounters as well as ‘tectonic shifts and betrayals.’ Software engineers meditate, children go hungry, and faith is lost and reconfigured. ‘Let me not forget to be what I have spoken,’ Boelhower reminds himself and his readers. Naming Rites is an important and sustaining book for our times, with its ‘cadence that calls us into the streets with voices/of protest and hope.’ Julie Gard, author of Home Studies

 

 

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IN THE SILENCE

footsteps crunch on the cold snow
heaven’s full of falling mercy
the big arms of the pine
spread in prayer shawled in white
the whole everyday machine muffled

if everyone could say their name
in such silence we might hear
each one might send their small swirl
of hopes and prayers
spiraling out like sufi robes
in the dervish dance
and we might all
hear each other’s hands rise up
and we would know the one world’s song

all our rituals are attempts at listening
all our songs a preparation
for emptiness when our words
have all fallen away because we know
we are all whirling together

wherever you are however you do it
notice how we are all whirling together
in the great round dance
on this tiny rock with fire in its soul
through the grand galaxies
spinning with mercy and wonder

 

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Amazon.com |  Amazon.co.uk

 

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WIN a copy of Naming Rites and Marrow, Muscle, Flight by Gary Boelhower

 

Rocket1-10Gary Boelhower’s poetry has been published in many anthologies and journals. His second collection of poems published in 2011, Marrow, Muscle, Flight won the Midwest Book Award. He was awarded the Foley Prize in poetry from America magazine in 2012 and a career development grant from the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council in 2010. His recent nonfiction books include Choose Wisely: Practical Insights from Spiritual Traditions, and Mountain 10: Climbing the Labyrinth Within,(co-authored with Joe Miguez and Tricia Pearce). His third collection of poems, Naming Rites, was published in April by Holy Cow! Press. Gary teaches courses in spirituality, ethics and leadership at The College of St. Scholastica where he is a professor in the Theology and Religious Studies Department.

Rob Rosen’s Fierce – and a giveaway

Oh lor, a superhero raised by wolves!  Who could resist?

 

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Lucas has a typical life — apart from being abandoned as a baby, raised by wolves, and having super powers. Still, inside, he feels like two people, both vying for control of himself. He’s a superhero and a nerdy college freshman. He’s both feral and tame. He wants to do good in the world and, at the same time, he wants to do nothing. And most of all, he wants to find his birth parents.

In this comedic tale of romance, mystery, and adventure, our hero is joined by his hunky boyfriend, his acerbic boss, an uptight college science professor, and his ex-boyfriend/once crime-fighting partner—not to mention a whole pack of wolves—to help foil his nemesis and uncover the secrets of his past to save his future.

Fierce at Goodreads

 

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Also available at
JMS Books  |  iBooks

 

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As a baby, I was raised by wolves in the mountainous wilds of Montana.

I have super powers. Like, seriously super.

I catch bad guys for a living. For free! Minus, of course, the well-merited and desperately sought-after publicity.

But, you ask, raised by wolves? Come on now, Fierce, really? Does that actually happen? Wolves eat babies, don’t they? I mean dingoes do— or so I’ve heard, a la one Miss Meryl Streep— so it stands to reason that wolves do, too. Though not these wolves. These were tame wolves. Well, tameish. They were zoo wolves, hand-raised by humans. Except, they escaped during a freak storm, back to the wilds from whence their ancestors came, never to be seen again.

I saw them right off the bat, though. Well, sawish. I mean, I was a baby at the time, my eyesight not what it is today— which is freakishly strong, by the way. And yes, toot, toot, my horn doth bloweth, yet again. Gabriel in the heavens up above turns green with envy at my tooting abilities. Oh, and in case you hadn’t already surmised it, superhero, at least in my case, equates to super ego. Freud missed out big time on the likes of yours truly.

But I digress. Back to the wolves.

Best I could figure it—seeing as, again, I was just a baby at the time—the initial wolf pack consisted of ten wolves that once inhabited a small zoo on the outskirts of Billings, Montana. One fateful day, a tornado hit. A big one. Huge even! Dorothy would’ve shit her panties it was so friggin’ massive. Anyway, from what I’ve read, the storm struck quite suddenly, too suddenly for the folks at the zoo to be able to corral all the animals beforehand, so, when the fencing to the wolves’ enclosure twisted and uprooted, out they sped. The zoo figured they died in the storm, except, well, duh, they didn’t. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be hearing this account right now, right? Then help! would’ve been lost to the cosmos. A truly sad thought, I know.

 

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WIN 1 of 3 ebook copies of “Fierce”

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Rob Rosen is the author of the critically acclaimed novels, Sparkle: The Queerest Book You’ll Ever Love, the Lambda Literary Award Nominated Divas Las Vegas, which was the winner of the 2010 TLA Gaybies for Best Gay Fiction, Hot Lava, Southern Fried, the Lambda Literary Award Nominated Queerwolf, Vamp, Queens of the Apocalypse, Creature Comfort, Fate, which was the winner of the 2016 TRR Readers’ Choice Award for Best Gay Romantic Comedy as well as a 2016 Rainbow Awards Finalist for Best Gay Romantic Comedy, Midlife Crisis, and Fierce. His short stories have appeared in more than 200 anthologies. You can find 20 of them in his erotic romance anthology, Good & Hot. He is also the editor of Lust in Time: Erotic Romance Through the Ages, Men of the Manor, Best Gay Erotica 2015 and Best Gay Erotica of the Year, Volumes 1 and 2 and 3.

Find Rob:

http://www.therobrosen.com/

https://www.facebook.com/therobrosen

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1396636.Rob_Rosen

https://www.amazon.com/Rob-Rosen/e/B002BRF0XM/

 

Audio Release of S J Himes’ The Necromancer’s Dance

 

Love the cover, love the title! I’m delighted to be part of the release blitz for the audiobook!

 

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Title: The Necromancer’s Dance
Series: The Beacon Hill Sorcerer #1
Narrated by: Joel Leslie
Length: 8 Hours 8 minutes
Release Date: 21st March 2017
Genre: Paranormal, Fantasy, MM Romance

In a world where magic is real and evil walks amongst humanity, a young sorcerer is beset upon by enemies, both old and new. Angelus Salvatore is the only necromancer in all of Boston, and his name is whispered warily by the undead and fellow sorcerers alike. He and his brother Isaac are the lone survivors of an attack by an army of the undead, in which Angel used a spell so powerful it forever marked his place in history. Now, years later, Angel struggles to balance his career as a teacher of the higher magical arts, his role as big brother, and a tenuous relationship with an Elder vampire from the local clan. When his brother’s boyfriend is used as a pawn in a mysterious plot to draw Angel out, Angel is once again pulled back into the old hostilities that fueled the Blood Wars and led to his family’s death.

Leaning on others for help is something Angel cannot do, and while he searches for clues into who may be targeting him and his brother, Angel finds his heart steadily growing occupied with Simeon, Elder and vampire. Dealing with death magic and vampires on a daily basis may leave Angel jaded when it comes to life and staying that way, but the more time he spends fending off the ancient vampire’s attention and affections, the more he realizes he wants to give in.

Can Angel find out who wants him dead, and keep his heart safe in the process? How can he fall for a vampire, when his whole family was torn apart by an army of the undead?

Death stalks the streets of Boston’s historic Beacon Hill….and there is no one more suited to battle against death than a necromancer.

MATURE CONTENT Contains graphic violence, male/male sexual contact, a cranky necromancer, a sexy Irish vampire, and a pesky demon.

 

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Audible US | Audible UK | Amazon USAmazon UK

 

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Pale skin was normal for a vamp, and Angel could see small flashes of tattoos that peeked above his jacket collar. His hair was long, but not too long, swept back in thick waves that made Angel’s fingers itch to touch. A chuckle, rich and smooth, brought him out of his musings. Angel flushed, realizing he had been staring, and for a while now. He looked back into Simeon’s eyes, the green so vibrant and true that the shade colored his whole horizon.

Angel dropped his eyes and took a small half-step back. Staring into a master vamp’s eyes was an invitation to lose your life. He knew better, but the old vamp’s appeal was strong. There was not much a vampire could do to him that he couldn’t get free of eventually, but he didn’t want to take his chances. Not even the promise of no violence would keep him safe from seduction.

“I need to go,” Angel said, looking back up but not making eye contact for longer than a second.

 

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I’m a self-employed writer who stresses out about the silliest things, like whether or not I got my dog the best kind of snack and the fact my kindle battery tends to die when I’m at the best part in a book. I write mainly gay romance, erotica, and urban fantasy, with ocasional forays into contemporary and paranormal. I love a book heavy on plot and character evolution, and throw in some magic, and that’s perfection. My current series are: The Beacon Hill Sorcerer, Bred For Love (as Revella Hawthorne), and The Wolfkin Saga. My last two novels in the Beacon Hill Sorcerer won 3rd Place in the Gay Fantasy category for the 2016 Rainbow Awards.

I live in New Orleans, where the personalities are big and loud and so are the bugs! New Orleans is rich in cultural history, and the flavor and music of the City is impossible to hide. Before that, I lived all over the United States: Tampa, Western Massachusetts, Indianapolis, and on and on…. I’m a nomad, and I’ve yet to find a place that calls to me strongly enough to become home. My faithful travel companions are my dog Micah, the numerous voices in my head who insist they all get put on paper, and the wind at my back.

Links: Website | Blog | Facebook | Facebook Fan Group | Twitter | Amazon
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