A MelanieM Review: Up The Ante: Four of Clubs Two (Pulp Friction 2015 Book 7) by Parker Williams

Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

Up the Ante coverTwo months ago, Ben Nelson stepped between a vengeful demon and psychic Artie Middleton—and has been paying for that decision ever since. Now that the last rites have been administered, doctors are ready to pull the plug on the young police detective. The trouble is, Artie has seen his future and knows that Ben belongs there.

When a friend suggests a solution that seems…out of this world, Artie must face Ben’s parents and convince them that there’s a chance their son can be saved. Unfortunately, even if he succeeds, every good deed comes with a price.

And someone is always waiting to up the ante.

I’ve been waiting impatiently to see what happened next after the soul gathering demon attacked Ben and Artie in The Devil’s Bedpost (love that title).  And while I was waiting, I heard through ripples in the Force, that this story was going to make me want to hunt the author down with a torch and pitchfork because of the ending. Did that happen?  Yes, trust in the Force!  What a story!  And what a spine tingling ending that is almost quaranteed to make you scream in frustration and anguish.

Pulp Friction stories and their series are always accompanied by a rollercoaster of suspense, chills, close calls and lethal encounters.  But never more so than in this year’s inter-connected stories in the Altered States universe.  And that brings us back to the last moments in The Devil’s Bedpost where we weren’t sure who lived, who died…we were just left to panic and ponder.

Well, the wait is over.  Up The Ante picks up two months after the events in the  first book, and things are as disheartening and unsettled as never before.  Ben lies in a coma in the hospital, hooked up to the machines with everyone losing hope for his recovery.  And Artie is blaming himself and isolating himself from the few friends he has.  It’s a desolate picture and Williams brings us into Artie’s heart and thoughts as he despairs of finding a way of helping Ben.  We feel Artie’s pain, exhaustion, and desperation and we are there with him in spirit because we have become so fond of Ben ourselves in such a short amount of time.

One of the things that helps to complete a characterization, to give it a full fleshed out persona, is to make the supporting players around that character so believable that they add weight to his authenticity.  That happens here with Ben and his family.  We meet them all in the hospital where they have gathered, helplessly waiting to hear more from the doctors.  There’s his mom, dad, sister and her husband.  Each a well-defined character that grounds Ben in a family that loves him.  And that element helps to point out its lack in Artie.  Artie’s family is made up of a dog of a surprising nature, and his small weird group of supernatural friends.  That they are his family as well is something Artie becomes aware of during the story.   How I loved/hated these hospital moments with Ben so close to death because it allows Artie to finally start to accept his feelings for Ben and the idea that Artie might have/had more of a life then he ever dreamed of.  It’s lovely, and sad, and life changing.

It’s the entrance of Tempest, the witch who works in the occult bookstore owned by Travis Boudreaux (Altered States series). She’s a strong female character, just as charismatic as the rest and I adored her.  She heralds a sea change for those characters we have been concentrating our emotions on for so long.  And hope appears along with her…

But remember those ripples in the Force I was telling you about?  And yes, because this is only the second story, you know that things have to get nasty before they get better, so yes again, Parker Williams throws a boulder into the water at the end, and it’s not ripples but a tidal wave of emotion that will hit you at last word.  I’d get out my pitchfork as threatened but I need the author to continue the story, to fix things and make it all better for all of us.  Argh and sigh…because the ante has most definitely been “upped”.

But ignore all that gnashing of teeth and pulling of hair, I am loving every angst-filled bit of this story and series.  It’s so well written, that the pages and plot fly by so I often have to go back and reread parts to see what clues or omens I may have missed.  And really, that dog Duke?  Priceless.  Grab up this series and prepare to fall in love with peculiar and wonderful men in love, a story full of shocks and surprises and world building elements that never stop entertaining or intriguing you.  Don’t start here, however, go back to the first story and read them in sequence.  It’s the only way to understand the overall series plot and character development.  Happy Reading and Anxious Waiting!

Cover art by Laura Harner.  I still wish for more of a dark element (not dark colors) to be included.  This is a series that includes demons and the occult so I wished for more of that in the design than a serious, sort of grumpy model.

Sales Links:   All Romance (ARe)  –   Amazon     Buy It Here

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 61 pages
Published May 13th 2015
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edition languageEnglish

About Pulp Friction 2015

Lee Brazil ~ Havan Fellows ~ Parker Williams ~ Laura Harner

The Pulp Friction 2015 Altered States Collection.
Four authors.
Four Series.
Twenty books.
One supernatural finale.

Spend a year with the creatures that go bump in the night…fighting for their rights to exist and protecting the innocents of The Big Easy. A diverse group of friends trying to find their place in a world they never had to “fit” into before.

Although each series can stand alone, we believe reading the books in the order they are released will increase your enjoyment.
Round One:
Drawing Dead (Jack of Spades: 1) by Lee Brazil
Blind Stud (King of Hearts: 1) by Havan Fellows
The Devil’s Bedpost (Four of Clubs: 1) by Parker Williams
Diamonds and Dust (Ace of Diamonds: 1) by Laura Harner

Round Two:
Dead Blind (Jack of Spades: 2) by Lee Brazil
Stud Player (King of Hearts: 2) by Havan Fellows
Up the Ante (Four of Clubs: 2)  by Parker Williams
Diamond Draw (Ace of Diamonds: 2) by Laura Harner

N.R. Walker’s Vampires Are Back in Cronin’s Key II (Excerpt and giveaway)

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 Cronin’s Key II by N.R. Walker
Release Date: May 22, 2015

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Goodreads Link:
Publisher: N.R. Walker
Cover Artist: Sara York

N. R. Walker’s vampires are back in Cronin’s Key II!   We have an excerpt and contest for you all to enter.  Prepare to get your vampire fix on!

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STRW Author BookSynopsis

History isn’t always what it seems.

With the battle of Egypt behind them, Alec and Cronin are enjoying the thrill of new love. Though fate doesn’t wait long before throwing them back into the world of weird.

They know Alec’s blood is special, though its true purpose still eludes them. And given Alec’s inability to be changed into a vampire, Cronin is free to drink from him at will. But the ramifications of drinking such powerful blood starts a ripple effect.

With the help of Jorge, a disturbing vampire-child with the gift of foresight, Alec and Cronin face a new kind of war. This time their investigations lead them to the borders of China and Mongolia—but it’s not what lies in the pits beneath that worries Alec.

It’s the creator behind it all.

In the underground depths of China, amidst a war with the Terracotta Army, they will find out just what the Key is, and what Alec means to the vampire world.

Pages or Words: 59,300 words

Categories: Fantasy, M/M Romance, Paranormal, Science Fiction

STRW Spotlight Book Excerpt

Alec sat on the sofa with his feet on the coffee table reading the New York Times on an iPad. He’d look up every so often at the apartment, at Cronin’s walls of memorabilia, smiling at the antiques shelved there, then at the vampire beside him.

“What’s so funny?” Cronin asked. He didn’t even look up from the Chinese newspaper he was reading, though a smile played at his lips.

“I was just looking over all your relics,” Alec explained. Cronin had told him about most of the artifacts he’d collected, and despite their conversations starting with good intentions, they usually ended up in the bedroom. Or on the sofa, or on the floor, or over the dining table. “I mean, those antiques are pretty cool, but you’re my favorite.”

Cronin looked up at Alec then. “Your favorite antique?”

“Well.” Alec’s grin widened. “You are a 744 vintage. I think you qualify.”

Cronin smiled, amused. “And you’re a what?”

Alec imitated the guy from Antiques Roadshow. “A contemporary piece, 1980s Americana. Perfect condition, well-endowed.”

Cronin laughed at that. “You’re bored.”

“Ugh.” Alec groaned and let his head fall back on the sofa. “So bored.”

He’d spent the last eight weeks holed up in Cronin’s lavish New York City apartment. His days, which were now fully nighttime hours, consisted of a workout regime—Cronin had installed gym equipment in the cinema room to curb Alec’s boredom—hours of foreplay and sex, the occasional movie on Netflix, and reading and researching vampire histories. He rarely left the apartment.

The view was spectacular, and if he wanted something—anything—he could simply order it, pay for it with Cronin’s black credit card, and have it delivered. But he was still confined to quarters. Meaning he was still wanted by NYPD, his former colleagues no less, though the hype had died down.

The fact that his and Cronin’s disappearing acts, which had been caught on CCTV—once in his department’s office area and once in the department’s stores facility—had been leaked on YouTube, meant Alec’s relatively quiet and unnoticed disappearance had gone global.

The footage went viral, making news headlines around the world and him an internet sensation. Some called it a hoax and disregarded what was just too impossible to understand, and others called it what it was.

Quantum leaping.

Cronin’s ability to appear anywhere in the world—or leaping as they called it—was, in Alec’s opinion, the best talent a vampire could have. And it was awesome. Not that they really went anywhere these last eight weeks.

It still wasn’t a great idea for Alec to be seen in public, and Cronin couldn’t go out in the sunlight. That limited their outings to faraway places, wherever it was night.

Alec sighed and went over to the shelves lined with Cronin’s memorabilia. He had wanted to know about all the items Cronin thought important enough to collect over the last twelve hundred years. As a vampire, Cronin had seen things Alec couldn’t begin to imagine, and he wanted to know as much as he could. He’d asked about most of them, but went to one display that held three items he’d not gotten to yet. Alec put his hand out, almost touching the artifact. “Can I touch it?”

Cronin now stood beside him. “Of course,” he answered with a smile.

Alec carefully picked up the small, crudely glazed bottle, admiring it as he turned it in his hands. It was whitish-brown and looked like a child had made it in school art class “What about this one?”

“That is a Mayan poison bottle.”

Alec blinked. “Oh.” He changed how he was holding it, as though it would now bite.

Cronin smiled. “The year was 821. Jodis and I went there and were ill-received. Can’t imagine why.”

Alec laughed and rolled his eyes. “No, I can’t imagine why either.”

“A witch-doctor offered us a drink,” Cronin said, nodding toward the bottle. “Courteous fellow.”

“Well, it would have been rude to refuse,” Alec added sarcastically.

“Yes, quite.” Cronin said, amused. “In the end, he drank it himself rather than see his end with one of us.”

“And this one?” Alec picked up what looked like a bone knife.

“Ah, that’s a Peruvian weaver’s bone wand.”

“Of course it is.”

Cronin chuckled. “It’s from 1288. An old woman stabbed me with it.”

Alec’s mouth fell open. “She what?”

“She stabbed me, only barely.” Cronin was still smiling. “Eiji and Jodis thought it funny that an elderly human woman could do such a thing. She was no taller than four foot.”

“I hope you killed her.”

Cronin barked out a laugh. “Uh, no. Her heart gave out before I had the chance.”

Alec turned back to the shelves and picked up a long metal pin with a jeweled end. It looked expensive. “And this?”

“That is a seventeenth century French shawl pin,” Cronin said, almost wistfully. “A man tried to stab me with it. I believe it belonged to his wife.”

“What is it with you and being stabbed?”

Cronin sniffed indignantly. “It must be my charming personality.”

Alec snorted. “If by charming personality you mean vampire about to kill them, then yes, I think so too.” But the truth was, Alec knew from years of police work that stabbing was an intimate crime; the offender was well within the other person’s personal space. He frowned. “I don’t like the idea of you being close enough to bite someone else. Or that you have your mouth on their skin… or your teeth.”

Cronin took the shawl pin from Alec and put it back on the shelf. “It doesn’t bother you that I kill people, only that I have my lips on them when I bite them?”

Alec looked to the floor and nodded. “You get close, you touch them, you put your lips on them,” he said. He knew he was pouting, but he couldn’t seem to stop. “It’s not fair.”

Cronin put his finger under Alec’s chin and lifted his face so he could see his eyes. “It is not the same.”

“I know,” Alec said petulantly. He knew he was being unreasonable. He craned his neck, exposing it to Cronin. Alec knew there were vampire puncture wounds marking his skin, and he loved them. He wore them with pride. “I like it when your lips are on my neck, when you bite me. When you drink from me.”

Cronin leaned in and ran his nose along the bite wounds. “Do I not take enough from you?”

“Never,” Alec whispered.

Cronin licked the two bruised hole marks, making Alec shiver. “Do I not bite you enough?”

“Never.” Alec was getting dizzy with want. He had to remind himself to breathe. He leaned against Cronin, feeling the strength and warmth of him from his thighs to his neck. He was already getting hard. “It will never be enough.”

Cronin kissed Alec’s neck once more but pulled away. “I can’t keep feeding from you. It can’t be good for you.”

Alec chuckled. “It is really good for me.”

This time Cronin laughed, a purr rumbled through his chest. “You test my restraint, yet again. Please know, Alec, I’m not opposed to such a notion. Though the hours spent in bed this morning may suggest you need a rest. Just because I can bite you without changing you, doesn’t mean you are unaffected.”

Alec groaned. They’d found out after the battle in Egypt that Cronin could bite Alec and not change him into a vampire. It opened a whole world of questions, but more than that, it meant they could have sex while Alec was human. And yes, as much as he wanted Cronin to take him, fuck him, and bite him, his human body needed recuperation. The intense sexual pleasure and slight blood loss took its toll when it was for hours at a time. So as much as he didn’t like it, he knew Cronin was right.

But Cronin also had a warped sense of time. Living for twelve hundred years would do that, Alec conceded. So while Cronin was patient and content to sit and read or research for hours upon hours, Alec was restless for something else beyond that, some sense of normalcy. He was used to police work, and now he sat around doing a whole lot of nothing. Even though he’d left normal behind the day he’d met Cronin, the vampire he was fated to, he was still a twenty-nine-year-old man. He needed to do something human. He grinned at Cronin. “Come on, let’s go out.”

Cronin quirked an eyebrow. “Where to?”

“A club somewhere.”

“I meant in which city.”

“Oh.” Alec was thinking some nightclub in the Meatpacking District would do. He didn’t think he’d ever get used to being able to leap to any country he chose. He grinned. “Well, it’s night time in Europe. I’ve always wanted to go to London.”

Cronin smiled. “I know just the place.”

* * * *

It took Alec a second to get his bearings. Leaving a warm and well-lit apartment and landing in a cold, dark alley in the time it took to blink was disorienting. He was used to the pain of leaping now. The feeling of being pixelated and shredded at the cellular level was expected, but he knew it was only momentary.

The cold air blasted him regardless, and he shivered against Cronin. Cronin took his hand and led him down the alley, out onto the street.

Alec noticed the cars first. The steering wheel was on the wrong side of the car, the cars were on the wrong side of the road. He looked down the neon-lit street, hearing the foreign accents around him as they passed Londoners having a night out. It made him grin.

Cronin walked up to a nightclub door, ignoring the waiting line-up of hopefuls. The bouncers gave him a nod, and Cronin pulled Alec through the doors with him. “Known around here, I take it?”

Cronin looked over his shoulder and smiled at him, giving Alec a glimpse of his vampire fangs. “This establishment is owned by a friend.”

Okay then. A vampire nightclub. Alec had no clue what he was walking into, yet he felt no fear. He was with Cronin, after all.

Cronin was an elder of the US East Coast, well-known and well-respected. A healthy dose of well feared didn’t hurt his reputation either.

The room was packed and pumping, the floor filled with dancers and drinkers. It was dark inside like most nightclubs Alec had been in, but he could still see that most of the people inside were human. They seemed blissfully ignorant of the company they kept. Alec guessed it kept in line with the vampire law of anonymity, though he did wonder how many of these unknowing humans wouldn’t see morning.

As if Cronin could read his mind, he leaned in close and whispered over the loud music, “No one can be harmed here. It would bring too much attention to the owners. It is simply a business owned by one of our kind.” Cronin pulled back, his dark eyes black, his normally rust colored hair tinted blue from the neon light above. “Drink?”

Alec nodded and Cronin led the way to the bar. Cronin stared for a beat too long at some guy who was leaning against the bar by himself before he nodded and called him by name. “Lars.”

Alec wanted to ask what was up with Lars—he was obviously a vampire—but before he had the chance, a voice came from behind them. “Cronin.”

Cronin smiled before he’d even turned around. “Kennard.”

Alec recognized the man as the elder of the London coven. He’d spoken to him via a video call when they were planning their attack in Egypt two months ago. Kennard was young in human years, no more than twenty. He was shorter than Alec imagined, with a slim build outlined by his fitted jacket with the collar upturned, perfectly styled blond hair, pale skin, and pink lips. He was boyish in looks, but there was a ferociousness lurking under the innocent façade. Alec thought that was what made him even more frightening.

“And Alec!” Kennard said, his eyes lighting up delightedly. He took Alec’s hand. “An absolute pleasure to meet you in person.”

Cronin made a point of looking at Kennard’s hand on Alec’s and feigned a snarl. It was hardly menacing, considering he did it with a smile.

“Oh, hush,” Kennard waved Cronin off. “You’ve been hiding him away for weeks now.” Kennard smiled up at Alec. Kennard’s flair and inflection reminded Alec of an over-acted Shakespeare play, and given Kennard was indeed a London elder, Alec wondered how far wrong he was on when exactly Kennard was human. “So, the hero of Egypt? No wonder you’re fated to Cronin. Only someone rather remarkable would be a match for him.”

Alec wasn’t sure what to make of Kennard. “Um….”

Cronin laughed and took Alec’s hand out of Kennard’s. “Ignore him. He’s an insatiable flirt,” he said, smiling warmly at his English friend. “But yes, Alec was very brave and clever.”

“You forgot handsome and good in bed,” Alec added.

Cronin blushed and Kennard clapped his hands as he laughed. “Oh, how I like you.” Then Kennard gave the barman a nod, “Get my friend here whatever he wants.”

Alec ordered a scotch and lime water, rather thankful he didn’t have to pay, because the only money he had was American dollars.

They followed Kennard through the crowd, up a few stairs, to a booth on a platform. It was clearly Kennard’s table, where he could sit and watch over his club. It also gave them privacy to speak freely without fear of being overheard by human ears. When they were seated, Kennard was still smiling at Alec. “So, the key is still human,” he said. “I have to say Cronin, I’m surprised.”

“Yeah well, about that,” Alec said, sipping his drink. “I can’t be changed. Not for the lack of trying.” He craned his neck slightly so his jacket slid down his neck, knowing Kennard would see the bite marks.

Kennard’s eyes shot to Cronin’s, and he sucked back a breath. “What is the meaning of this?”

“We don’t know,” Cronin said, his arm sliding protectively around Alec’s shoulders. “His blood is… special. It’s what made him the key to defeating Keket in Egypt—he resurrected a mummified vampire with his blood alone,” Cronin said. “Though our seer says his work is not yet done.”

Kennard’s eyes narrowed, but he shook it off and schooled his features with a smile. He looked again at Alec’s neck. “Well, if any one of us were fortunate enough to have the best of both worlds, Cronin, it would be you.”

Alec finished his drink, Kennard waved his hand, and not a moment later another full drink was on the table. “Thank you,” Alec said. “And thank you for helping us in Egypt. I’m glad I got to thank you in person.”

“It is I who should be thanking you,” Kennard said. “It’s not every day we get to meet and talk with a key.”

Alec was beginning to hate that word.

Maybe he wouldn’t hate it so much if he knew what it fucking meant.

Kennard was still obviously shocked. “Yet you can bite him and he remains human?”

Alec swore he heard a rush of whispers from the edges of the crowd. The vampires in the club clearly heard what Kennard said. Cronin let out a low growl. Kennard raised a hand dismissively and the whispers stopped. Cronin’s growl lowered but took a while to fade completely.

Kennard laughed. “Maybe we shouldn’t talk about biting here, no?”

Cronin’s reply was low and final. “No.”

Kennard changed the subject of conversation. “How’s Eiji? Is he getting better?”

“All but healed,” Cronin answered. Word had spread quickly that Eiji had survived exposure to sunlight in saving Alec’s life. “He and Jodis are in Japan while he convalesces.”

Alec finished his drink, and a third appeared in front of him. He was already a little buzzed, so he sipped his next drink and scanned the floor while Cronin and Kennard talked of vampire matters. It was all rather political, and Alec was too busy checking out the dance floor to pay any attention. He wasn’t one to dance often, but in the end, it got the better of him. Alec downed his drink and stood up. “I’m gonna hit the dance floor,” he said.

Cronin started to object, naturally, but Kennard put his hand on Cronin’s arm. “Ah, Cronin,” Alec heard Kennard say. “Let him dance while we talk business. No need for the three of us to be bored senseless.”

Not caring they had company, Alec leaned down and kissed Cronin soundly before going back down the stairs and making his way through a sea of people. They were a mix of men and women, and from the lingering, knowing looks by some of them, Alec knew they were a solid mix of human and vampire.

Alec didn’t care. He let his head fall back and closed his eyes, feeling the bass of the music in his chest. It felt good to be doing something so normal, so human. He knew Cronin never took his eyes off him, and once upon a time that would’ve annoyed Alec. He’d have forbidden such possessive behavior, but now he reveled in it. He craved being owned by Cronin, as much as Cronin longed to be owned by him.

Being fated was a beautiful thing.

Alec couldn’t believe he’d once tried to rebuke the idea.

A warm body pressed a little too close, making Alec open his eyes. He knew it had to be some human—no vampire in the club would be stupid enough to approach another vampire’s mate, and Cronin’s mate no less. It was a guy who smiled at him, but before he could even speak, Cronin was in between them, staring at the now-pale human man until he backed away.

Alec pulled himself against Cronin’s ass and laughed. “Jealousy looks good on you.”

“We must leave,” Cronin said.

“He didn’t mean anything by it,” Alec started to say.

But Cronin had Alec’s hand and was leading him to what Alec realized was the back way to the fire escape. “No, we must go. Now.”

Alec knew from Cronin’s tone something was wrong. He tried to clear his head. “What happened?”

“It’s not what has happened,” Cronin said as he pushed through the back door into an alley where Kennard stood waiting. “It’s what’s going to happen.”

Alec had no sooner stepped into the alley, than Cronin looked around and checked that the three of them were alone. He put his arm around Alec, pulled him close, put his hand on Kennard’s shoulder, and they leapt.

 

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STRW Author Bio and Contacts

N.R. Walker is an Australian author, who loves her genre of gay romance. She loves writing and spends far too much time doing it, but wouldn’t have it any other way. She is many things; a mother, a wife, a sister, a writer. She has pretty, pretty boys who live in her head, who don’t let her sleep at night unless she gives them life with words. She likes it when they do dirty, dirty things…but likes it even more when they fall in love. She used to think having people in her head talking to her was weird, until one day she happened across other writers who told her it was normal. She’s been writing ever since…

Where to find the author:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003907957620
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/N.R.WalkerAuthor
Twitter: https://twitter.com/NR_Walker
Website: http://nrwalker.wordpress.com/

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Tour Dates & Stops: May 22, 2015
Parker Williams, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Molly Lolly, Inked Rainbow Reads, BFD Book Blog, Bayou Book Junkie, Multitasking Mommas, Rainbow Gold Reviews, Carly’s Book Reviews, My Fiction Nook, Full Moon Dreaming, Sinfully Addicted to All Male Romance, Cate Ashwood, MM Good Book Reviews, Velvet Panic, Mikky’s World of Books, It’s Raining Men, Michael Mandrake, Elin Gregory, Chris McHart, Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents

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Enter to win a Rafflecopter Prize: E-copy of ‘Cronin’s Key’.  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.  Link and prizes provided by the author and Pride Promotions.
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Cover Reveal Time for Model Citizen by Lissa Kasey (excerpt and giveaway)

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 Model Citizen by Lissa Kasey
Release Date: June 22, 2015

It’s murder, mystery and international supermodels!  Check out the cover for Lissa Kasey’s latest novel, Model Citizen, read the excerpt and don’t forget to enter the contest at the end of the post! Happy Reading!

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Garrett Leigh

Sales Links:   Dreamspinner Press eBook & Paperback

LissaKasey_ModelCitizen_ORIG

 

Model Citizen Blurb

Oliver “Ollie” Petroskovic’s life as an international supermodel was heading in the right direction. He worked part-time for his brother at his detective agency—Petroskovic Haven Investigations—and had just bought his dream house. But all that changed when he found his brother dead, a victim of PTSD-induced suicide.

Almost a year later, Ollie is trying to keep his brother’s business afloat, but can’t get his PI license. Then his brother’s best friend, Kade Alme, shows up, fresh from the battlefield after a close brush with death. Kade is looking for a new life, in more ways than one, and with PI license in hand, he’s exactly what Ollie needs to keep PHI running.

When one of Ollie’s childhood friends gets in trouble, Ollie feels he has to help. Kade insists on investigating if only to keep Ollie safe. Neither realizes the danger they’re in as someone tries to tear them apart before they can find solid ground together.

Pages or Words: 82,000 words

Categories: Contemporary, M/M Romance, Mystery

Model Citizen Excerpt

Kade pulled up beside a building that had probably never had better days. At least I didn’t immediately recognize it as someplace I used to play. “Call him. Tell him to come down. This doesn’t look like a great place to linger.”

I snorted. Did he miss the gas station with bars on the windows and bullet holes in the side? “You want to see the bad side of Oakland? I can give you a tour later.” I dialed Bob’s number, but the phone just rang and rang. I hung up when it went to voice mail, and tried again. It was just after five.

“Okay, maybe he fell asleep or is in the shower or something? Let me run up and check.” The building looked like it had one outside entrance and no secure door. I could pick a lock if I had to but preferred not to do so in broad daylight.
Kade frowned. “I don’t think that’s a good idea.”

I pulled the Taser and pepper spray out of my bag and held them up. “I spray first, and if that doesn’t stop them, I tase, then run. I’m up on self-defense 101.”

He sighed. “Anything feels even remotely hinky, you come back down immediately.”

“Sure,” I promised as I hopped out of the car. “Who even says hinky anymore?”

I made my way to the door and searched through my phone to find the apartment number. The main door opened into a stairwell dirty enough to double as Pig-Pen’s playhouse. The stench of pot drenched the building. Bob was in 310, which meant he was on the top floor all the way to the left. I followed the brass numbers. The stink of weed made me dizzy. How could people stand it? It was like sweaty socks left in the sun too long. Maybe getting high killed the stink or made you not care about the smell, but I couldn’t imagine enjoying it either way.

I tried to breathe through my mouth, which only made it worse, forcing me to stop twice to cough. Finally arriving at the end of the hall, I knocked on Bob’s door and waited. Nothing. Just an air conditioner running somewhere, or maybe a really noisy fridge.

“Bob?” I called and knocked again. “Robert Wilcoxson?” I dialed his number and could hear the phone ringing inside the apartment, but again no one answered, either the door or the phone. What the hell?

I tried the doorknob to see if it was locked. The door snicked open and swung inward. I hesitated and debated calling Kade for a minute because the whole scenario screamed bad horror movie. But I pushed the door wide, Taser aimed like a gun, finger on the trigger while I clung to the walls, pretending I was SWAT. I had taken official classes on how to operate the Taser. I’d even experienced its sting myself, so I knew I could and would pull the trigger if someone jumped out at me. At least no one was behind the door. The apartment was dark, with all the blinds drawn to keep out the bright California sun and let the shitty air conditioner do its thing.

The counters were piled with dirty dishes and packaged foods. The carpet had seen a couple dozen years and was stained too badly to recognize the original color of the hideous shag. The walls were the dingy white of most apartments with a smoker, though all I could smell was weed. The guy needed to open a window. I was starting to feel lightheaded, but at least it appeared there was no axe murderer ready to jump out at me.

“Bob?”

Still nothing. A glance at the single bedroom proved it was empty and a petri dish of brewing bacteria. Okay, I was a bit of a slob, but crap, never like this. The stench of shit made me gag. Or maybe that was the weed. I’d probably breathed enough of that crap to give myself a buzz for a week.

The bathroom door was slightly ajar. I headed for it just as my phone rang. “What?” I answered, a little annoyed. Didn’t he trust me?

“What’s taking so long? It’s been like ten minutes,” Kade said.

The stink intensified near the bathroom. I pushed the door back, and the smell wafted over me like a living thing. It took a minute to make sense of what I was seeing. Bob—well, presumably Bob—hung from the shower rod. His face was purple, eyes bulged out, and his mouth was contorted in a silent scream, teeth bared in a grimace. He was naked from the waist down, with only a leather harness on top. His dick hung lower than any dick had a right to—past his knees—dark purple and huge, filled with blood.

“Fuck! Oh fuck!” I swore, bile rising in my throat.

I raced from the apartment, barely making it to the hallway before heaving up tea and stomach acid on the puke-green carpet. The phone dug into my palm, but I clung to it like it could somehow erase the memory of the past five minutes of my life. Muffled curses trickled over the line.

Kade appeared a moment later, huffing and out of breath, his limp heavier than normal. He was without his cane, but I couldn’t recall him bringing it with us when we left the office. He wobbled like a picture out of focus. Or maybe that was just me.

“What the fuck? Talk about giving me a heart attack. I thought you said you’d tase and then run. Fuck, Ollie.”

“He’s already dead,” I grumbled at my shoes and heaved a little more. The hallway twisted and turned around me like a multicolored circus tent on a Tilt-A-Whirl.

Kade stepped around me and disappeared into the apartment. He was back seconds later, cursing and dialing his phone. He wrapped an arm around my waist and led me toward the exit. Fresh air had never tasted so sweet as when he dropped me unceremoniously next to my illegally parked VW. Whatever he said to the cops had them arriving in a hurry. Probably a first for the residents around here. I laid my head against the front headlight and shut my eyes. Maybe the swirling would stop.

 

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About Author Lissa Kasey:

Lissa Kasey lives in St. Paul, MN, has a Bachelor’s Degree in Creative Writing, and collects Asian Ball Joint Dolls who look like her characters. She has three cats who enjoy waking her up an hour before her alarm every morning and sitting on her lap to help her write. She can often be found at Anime Conventions masquerading as random characters when she’s not writing about boy romance.

Where to find the author:

Twitter: @parisbvamp
Website: http://www.lissakasey.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lissa.kasey

Tour Dates & Stops: May 22, 2015

Multitasking Mommas, Parker Williams, Cate Ashwood, MM Good Book Reviews, Nephylim, Divine Magazine, Elisa – My Reviews and Ramblings, Love Bytes, Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents, BFD Book Blog, Inked Rainbow Reads, Bayou Book Junkie, Dawn’s Reading Nook, Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews, The Fuzzy, Fluffy World of Chris T. Kat, Molly Lolly, Rainbow Gold Reviews, Mikky’s World of Books, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Velvet Panic, My Fiction Nook, Book Reviews, Rants, and Raves, Vampires, Werewolves, and Fairies, Oh My, Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews, It’s Raining Men, Michael Mandrake, Happily Ever Chapter

Model Citizen Giveaway

Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.  Link and prizes provided by the author and Pride Promotions. Enter to win a Rafflecopter Prize: 2 print copies of ‘Model Citizen’

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It’s Cover Reveal Time for The Pinch of the Grape by Charley Descoteaux! (excerpt & giveaway)

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The Pinch of the Game by Charley Descoteaux
Release Date: June 24, 2015

Goodreads Link:
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: AngstyG

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Sales Links: Dreamspinner Press

About The Pinch of the Game…

Being a witch doesn’t mean one can beat the devil forever.

Jeffrey Overton, unemployed IT professional turned poker player, pushes his luck once too often and runs afoul of the host of an illegal card club. The man sent to escort Jeffrey to a “meeting” about his supernatural winning streak arrives at Jeffrey’s crappy North Portland apartment, lock-picking tools in hand and a charm to block Jeffrey’s magick.

Head muscle for said host, Mike Wells, is a Daisy from Daisyville. He isn’t a witch. What he lacks in magickal talent he makes up for in brawn, so he doesn’t expect the guy he’s after to overpower him. But once Mike renders Jeffrey helpless, he’d rather seduce him than bring him in.

Jeffrey and Michael ditch the “meeting” and end up hunting some of the same people they ran from, trying to get Jeffrey back into his own body. And that’s only part of the adventure. The pair travel halfway across the country on the quietest road trip in history and find missing people, empire-building witches, and maybe even the families they’d both thought lost to them.

Pages or Words:

Categories: Contemporary, Gay fictions, M/M Romance, Mystery, Paranormal, Romance

An Excerpt from The Pinch of the Game

If Sal had sent someone after me, a short trip up to Seattle might be a good idea, maybe even BC. That called for some new clothes, so I grabbed my battered gym bag—my quick escape kit—and was almost home free when the kitchen door burst open. It would’ve been dumb to turn off the light when the goomba first went to work on the lock—I can’t see any better in the dark than your average Daisy, not when I’m blocked. Once that massive body filled the doorway, I wished I had.

Wished I’d done something.

He hesitated, barely a moment, and I bolted for the front door. He grabbed me before I made it out of the kitchen and pinned both of my arms to my sides. It wouldn’t work, I knew that, but I still tried to burn his hands. All I needed was enough time to—fuck, is he laughing?

“Give it up, pretty boy. You’re blocked.”

The big man pushed me against the wall face-first and pulled both hands behind my back.

“Hey, wait a sec, big guy. Let’s talk about this. I can—”

He pushed me flat against the wall, and the rest of that sentence disappeared in the rush of air he squeezed from my lungs. I couldn’t help being turned on, even though pain and domination usually aren’t my thing. Neither are bears, but underneath the padding he felt nice and solid, leaning full against me. He tightened a plastic zip tie around my wrists with shaking hands. And then he held me there.

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About the author:

Charley Descoteaux has always heard voices. She was relieved to learn they were fictional characters, and started writing when they insisted daydreaming just wasn’t good enough. In exchange, they’ve agreed to let her sleep once in a while. Charley grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area during a drought, and found her true home in the soggy Pacific Northwest. She has survived earthquakes, tornadoes, and floods, but couldn’t make it through one day without stories.

Where to find the author:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/charley.descoteaux.3
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/CharleyDescoteauxAuthor
Twitter: https://twitter.com/CharleyDescote
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/charleydescote/
Blog: http://cdescoteauxwrites.com/blog/
Goodreads: http://tinyurl.com/aqe7g7r
Email: c.descoteauxwrites@gmail.com

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Tour Dates & Stops: May 22, 2015
Parker Williams, Cate Ashwood, Emotion in Motion, Amanda C. Stone, Tara Lain, Kimi-Chan, BFD Book Blog, Molly Lolly, Bayou Book Junkie, Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews, Louise Lyons, Divine Magazine, Andrew Q. Gordon, Sinfully Addicted to All Male Romance, Lee Brazil, Rebecca Cohen Writes, Iyana Jenna, Mikky’s World of Books, Book Reviews and More by Kathy, Love Bytes, Prism Book Alliance, Wake Up Your Wild Side, My Fiction Nook, Chris McHart, MM Good Book Reviews, Elin Gregory, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, All I Want and More Books, Inked Rainbow Reads, Rainbow Gold Reviews, Carly’s Book Reviews, Kimber Vale, Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents, Hearts on Fire, Full Moon Dreaming, Velvet Panic, Because Two Men Are Better Than One, TTC Books and More, Up All Night, Read All Day, Book Reviews, Rants, and Raves, Bike Book Reviews, Havan Fellows, The Hat Party, Nephylim, Vampires, Werewolves, and Fairies, Oh My, Dawn’s Reading Nook, Andrew Q. Gordon

Contest

Enter to win a Rafflecopter Prize: $10 gift card and backlist book of choice.  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter. Link and prizes provided by the author and Pride Promotions.
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A MelanieM Review: Stud Player (King of Hearts, #2) by Havan Fellows

Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

STud Player coverIn a world where supernatural creatures openly exist, who can blame them for coalescing in one of the most fascinating and erotic places on earth? Welcome to New Orleans.

A conflicted incubus…

Laurant knows sex. As an incubus, he needs it to live. What he doesn’t need or understand are all those sticky and obnoxious ooey gooey emotions that humans intertwine with the physical act of enjoyment. So he’s less than pleased with his firsthand introduction to those feelings in reference to his last meal…they’re actually driving him insane. Crazy enough that he’ll face off against the baddest of his kind to keep his delectable morsel safe and sound and hopefully on his menu.

Not just your average blue-plate special…

Sure, in a moment of duress, Gun fed Laurant. The demon lay on the floor, bleeding from a wound meant for him—what else could he do but enjoy the ride the sex demon needed to heal. Unfortunately, the dangerous conclusion and surprising aftermath of their coupling only cements Gun’s need to know who he is and where he comes from…and to keep his distance from the enticing and deadly incubus.

So it really sucks when the incubus may be the only one that can keep him alive.

Who will turn out to be the King of Hearts in Havan Fellows’ King of Hearts series for Pulp Friction 2015?  I love that it’s getting harder and harder to figure out who that title will belong to with each new installment. Stud Player supplies us with more questions than answers and that’s a wonderful thing.

Laurant, our over-the-top incubus with a taste for men seemed more destined for the title of King of Casual Sex than the King of Hearts.  He loves them, as many as possible, and then leaves them behind, alive but definitely alone at the end of each encounter. It’s a necessary flibbertigibbet lifestyle brought on by the fact that his kind are forbidden to kill  their “food” and feeding on humans more than once brings with it less than favorable complications. Then a mysterious stranger appeared and everything changed, no matter how much Laurant refuses to see it.  That mystery person, Gun (a name given to him by Laurant) is becoming even more of an enigma to all, including himself, as each new interaction with Laurant and gang reveals new sides to Gun in practically every way.

Gun is a wonderful character, strong, more than a match for Laurant at his sexy best.  Yet the man knows nothing about himself, how he got to New Orleans and most importantly, why he can’t remember anything about well anything that concerns himself.  And Laurant finds himself impossibly attracted and protective of Gun.  Especially after he “kills” Gun, or thinks he does in a moment of absolute need.  That event proves Laurant  wrong about so many assumptions he’s made about Gun and just highlights the need for more information about the mysteries that surround the sexy stranger.

Take all that, throw in a disapproving father demon, an Incubus Council on the warpath and Havan Fellows delivers a sparkling, sexy mystery that pulls you in and refuses to let you go.  With each new story, my liking for these characters deepen.  Fellows reveals new supporting characters with each story that add an emotional heft to each person’s present situation and gives us a bit more of their  past.  Or at least Laurant’s past.

In true serialized fiction style, we are left with another enormous mystery concerning Gun after a major dynamic scene that exciting, full of suspense, and one element that’s satisfyingly shocking.  Someone so deserved what happened to him.  *claps* And still with all that action, we are left with complications, questions, and absolutely no answers.  Will that frustrate you?  I’m almost positive it will but it will keep you thinking until the next story is ready to be picked up and devoured.  Boy, I hope that’s soon.  Answers!!!!  I want answers!  And lots more sexy encounters between Laurant and Gun.  Love this pair.   You will too.

Not familiar with the King of Hearts series, author Havan Fellows or the Pulp Friction Gang’s series of interconnected fiction?  This is a great place to start.  No, not this story, but the series.  Head to the beginning round of stories.  I have listed them all below.  Read them in sequence and together to round out the communal plot and connected characters.  It’s fun, its a sexy romp and its not to be missed.  Consider this and all of them highly recommended!

Cover art by Laura Harner.  Love the model on this  cover.  I’m thinking this is Gun as Laurant would never be this scruffy.

Sales Links:  All Romance (ARe) – Amazon    Buy It Here

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 54 pages
Published April 14th 2015 by Lime Time Press
ASINB00W5HNFYE
edition languageEnglish
seriesPulp Friction 2015 #5, Jack of Spades #2

About Pulp Friction 2015
Lee Brazil ~ Havan Fellows ~ Parker Williams ~ Laura Harner

The Pulp Friction 2015 Altered States Collection.
Four authors.
Four Series.
Twenty books.
One supernatural finale.
Spend a year with the creatures that go bump in the night…fighting for their rights to exist and protecting the innocents of The Big Easy. A diverse group of friends trying to find their place in a world they never had to “fit” into before.
Although each series can stand alone, we believe reading the books in the order they are released will increase your enjoyment.
Round One:
Drawing Dead (Jack of Spades: 1) by Lee Brazil
Blind Stud (King of Hearts: 1) by Havan Fellows
The Devil’s Bedpost (Four of Clubs: 1) by Parker Williams
Diamonds and Dust (Ace of Diamonds: 1) by Laura Harner

Round Two:

Stud Player (King of Hearts #2) by Havan Fellows
Dead Blind (Jack of Spades #2) by Lee Brazil
Up the Ante (Four of Clubs #2) by Parker Williams

A BJ Review: A Perfect Game by Reno MacLeod and Jaye Valentine

Rating:  4 stars out of 5

A Perfect Game coverChristopher “Kit” Pennington is a twenty-six year old rich guy with dreams of becoming a professional baseball player. He has loads of talent and drive when it comes to baseball, but not so much for formal education. He’s been barely getting by in his studies at the private school he attends. But when handsome Liam Dalton replaces one of Kit’s regular professors, higher learning suddenly becomes more interesting.

I’m not a big sports fan, but I very much enjoyed this book about a younger Dom and an older sub. Kit is a naughty, potty-mouth, brat at the beginning. He’s floundering in his studies even while he excels at his sport, until he meets the right teacher who can change that.

The relationship is a bit on the insta-love side, but it worked for me due to Kit’s personality. Once Kit saw what he wanted, he was very much the aggressor, pursuing Liam for all he was worth. Kit didn’t have the smooth control and power of an experienced Dom, which I rather liked in someone so young.

Up until the book hit about 70%, I was finding it to be an enjoyable but middle-of-the-road read. I questioned exactly what drew Liam to Kit enough for him to risk his career and would have liked to see more of Liam’s background revealed as I think it could have helped with that. Plus, there are a few editing errors to be found.

Then all of a sudden, the book turned a major corner for me and soared straight into the better-than-average zone.

Kit seemed to come into himself once he was out from under his father’s thumb and secure in his relationship with Liam. Liam also blossomed. The way Kit cherished Liam, the way he was so observant and attentive and earned his trust. And the vows Kit said when he put Liam’s collar on! How I’d love for someone to say that sort of thing to me… especially the last sentence. *sigh*


I promise to love you and protect you with my life and never let any harm befall you. I promise I’ll never put you in a position where you are humiliated or feel embarrassed and I will never, ever cause you any reason for distrust.

Even Kit’s grumpy father was changed by seeing how much these two two cared for and brought out the best in each other. And the end hit it out of the park. If only there’d been more of a buildup of sexual tension, this could have been a five star for me despite its imperfections.

The cover didn’t particularly appeal to me since its very much baseball focused, and I’m not into sports. If I’d gone by the cover rather than the blurb, I wouldn’t have picked this up.

Sales Links:      Amazon   Buy It Here


Book Details:  

ebook, 150 pages
Published November 30th 2009 by Noble Romance Publishing (first published 2009)
ISBN1605920673 (ISBN13: 9781605920672)
edition language English

A Paul B Review: Bound to Brody (Shifters and Lovers #1) by Ali Atwood

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Bound To Brody coverWhen Zac McQuade comes home for his niece’s baptism, his college crush Brody Maitland pays him a visit. Hoping for a social call, he is disappointed when he wants his help tracking a missing patient. As the two investigate, things heat up both for them and in the mystery. Will secrets past and present separate them permanently?

Zac McQuade spent several years in the military after school. Upon his release from the military, he is contacted by a government agency to become an elite assassin. As a cover, he informs people that he is in the foreign investigations division of the FBI. After having completed his last assignment, he heads home to attend the christening of his niece and take a much needed breather from work.

Brody Maitland is a psychiatrist at the local university. He is worried when one of his patients disappears with no explanation. Having heard that his former crush is home to visit his family, he contacts Zac in hopes that he will help to unofficially investigate the disappearance of his patient. Zac, knowing that he isn’t trained for this despite his professed credentials, agrees to help Brody out if only to spend some time with him.

As the investigation progresses, they find that the missing student might be victim of a serial killer. While tracking down information, they come to realize that they had feelings for each other while in school. As this bond grows, it serves not only to bring them together but also will be used against them. The killer uses this growing bond to put the protagonists in jeopardy. Will the secret that Brody is keeping which could save them from the killer also destroy the building romance between the two heroes?

This is the first book in the new Shifters and Lovers series by Ali Atwood. There is much that I liked about the book. First, other than the fact the series name, the fact that one of the protagonists is a shifter is not revealed until near the end of the book. To extend this point, our shifter did not grow up knowing about paranormals as he was adopted at an early age. Another difference is that this is not a story of destined mate. It starts out as a story of unrequited love that soon evolves. The author sets up further books in the series as our heroes decide to find out if there are others like him.

I also am interested to see if Zac’s occupation will play in the hunt for more shifters. This is a good start to a new series in my opinion.

The cover art by Scott Carpenter is simply gorgeous. Two well built shirtless men dominate the top two thirds of the cover. The bottom third has a cougar ready to pounce. Nicely done.

Sales Links: eXtasy Books –   All Romance (ARe) –  Amazon   Buy It Here

Book details:
Ebook, 78 pages
Edtion: English
Published: May 1, 2015 by Extasy Books
ISBN: 978-1-4847-0329-4
Series: Shifters and Lovers
Bound to Brody (Shifters and Lovers #1)

Enter the World of Sex & Cybercrime with “Would I Lie To You?” by Brad Vance (author interview and giveaway)

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 Would I Lie To You? (The Game Players #1) by Brad Vance
Release Date: April 24, 2015

STRW In The Spotlight Header

Goodreads Link
Publisher: Brad Vance
Cover Artist: Brad Vance

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Sales Links: (Amazon exclusive)

Our Interview with Brad Vance….

Today I’m very lucky to be interviewing Brad Vance, author of “Would I Lie to You?” Hi Brad, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Tell us a little about yourself, your background, and your current book.

Thank you! Glad to be here.

Give us an interesting fun fact or a few about your book or series:

Well, it’s the first time I’ve come up with a pair of characters I felt could sustain a series. They’re complex and brilliant and easily bored, so they’ll be challenging each other to keep it fresh for some time to come. I’ve had other pairs about whom readers have said, “I want more!” But I’d given those guys their HEAs and I couldn’t figure out how to write more about them without undoing that HEA. And after all the angst and pain I put them through, I just couldn’t do that to them, or myself!

How did you come up with the title of your book or series?

I got the book title looking at the cover model, Daniel Sobieray. That pick just popped out at me on a stock photo site, and I could hear him asking that – “Would I lie to you?” The answer, when you look at him, is yeah, you would. The series title is “The Game Players” because these are guys who aren’t interested in a relationship that’s, you know, Friday nights at the Olive Garden and the latest blockbuster movie. Marc and Jesse have that “fighting their attraction” trope, but I messed with that, and turned it into something more complex. Each knows very well that the other is just as attracted to him, but not only do circumstances stand in the way, but they’re both willing to play a game of teasing and expectations that lasts a long time. Just “giving in” would be boring, to both of them. Most of the sexual heat between them in the book is really the “foreplay” that builds them up to the big release!

Give us an insight into your main character. What does he/she do that is so special?

I think they’re both special! But if I was to talk about Marc, I’d say that he’s an interesting type. He’s totally in control in life, running a multibillion dollar corporation, but he needs that release of a dom/sub relationship, somewhere he can lose that control, if only for a night. But – he’s not the kind of sub you’d see on his knees in a bar, crawling around licking any boot in sight. Marc’s not a weak person, he’s strong, and he’s looking for someone even stronger.

What do you think makes a good story?

Research, realism, believability. Dialogue that sounds like something actual men would say to each other. If you make the guy a cop, pick up a textbook on policing or a cop memoir and see what the job is really like. If you make the guy a soldier, make sure you know the job he has, the lingo, etc. We all have these fantasy men (fireman, cop, etc.) but to me, what fulfills the fantasy is that sense that this guy really is what you say he is.

What does your family think of your writing?

Well, my mom knows about it, but the only book she’s read is “Apollo’s Curse,” the one with no sex in it! She’s glad I’m making a living, but when I was just writing erotica and revealed to her that I was actually making money at it, all she said was, “Well…sure are a lot of weirdos out there.”

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STRW Author BookSynopsis

Software billionaire Marc Julian’s orderly life is shattered one night by a cyber-intrusion into his company’s servers. He’s always surrounded himself with the best people, but finding the culprit behind this might require a real expert…and sometimes it takes a thief to catch a thief.

Jesse Winchester and his team of “grey hat” hackers are suddenly available to Marc. Marc doesn’t know if he should trust Jesse with the keys to his company’s kingdom. After all, Jesse’s a convicted felon, sent to prison for violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. A felon sentenced to thirty-five years in prison, who mysteriously served only three years before being released…

Marc’s first company, his whole life, was shattered because he trusted the wrong person. This time there’s even more at stake, but few other options. Especially when his evil enemies, the billionaire industrialist Krom brothers, are revealed to be the source of the intrusion.

Is Jesse there to help Marc, or does he have his own history with the Kroms, his own score to settle? As Jesse and Marc spend more time together, their growing intimacy is at war with their need to win their respective battles. Soon the game they start to play with each other, against each other, becomes more exciting, more exquisitely frustrating…and more dangerous.

Pages or Words: 289 pages

Categories: BDSM, Crime Fiction, M/M Romance, Thriller, Cybercrime

STRW Spotlight Book Excerpt

He’d made a mistake with Marc. He’d thought they could play a game together, to pass the time, let off steam, release stress.

Marc was smart enough to know that that’s all it was.

Right?

But the look on his face, when Jesse said goodbye… The shock. The disappointment. The…

Say it. The hurt. That was when Jesse knew that for Marc, it had been more.

That was when Jesse knew that it had been more for him, too.

 

STRW Author Bio and Contacts

About the author:
Brad Vance writes gay romance, erotica and paranormal stories and novels, including the breakout hits “A Little Too Broken” and “Have a Little Faith in Me.”

Where to find the author:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/brad.vance.10
Facebook Author Page: https://www.bradvanceerotica.wordpress.com
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/BradVanceAuthor
Google: https://plus.google.com/u/1/+BradVance/about

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STRW Spotlight Contest Header

Must be 18 years of age or older to enter. Link and prizes provided by the author and Pride Promotions. Enter to win a Rafflecopter Prize: One of three E-book copies of ‘Would I Lie To You?’ by Brad Vance
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Tour Dates & Stops: May 11 – May 29, 2015
11-May
Parker Williams

12-May
Prism Book Alliance

13-May
Decadent Delights

14-May
Kimi-Chan

15-May
Bayou Book Junkie

18-May
Velvet Panic
3 Chicks After Dark
Inked Rainbow Reads

19-May
Divine Magazine
Vampires, Werewolves, and Fairies, Oh My

20-May
Love Bytes

21-May
Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words

22-May
Sinfully Addicted to All Male Romance

25-May
BFD Book Blog

26-May
Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents

27-May
Iyana Jenna

28-May
Molly Lolly
MM Good Book Reviews

29-May
My Fiction Nook
Butterfly-O-Meter
Because Two Men Are Better Than One

Love Paranormal Romance? Check Out “Hush” by Jude Sierra (excerpt and giveaway)

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Hush by Jude Sierra
Release Date: May 19, 2015

Goodreads Link 
Publisher: Consent, an imprint of Interlude Press
Cover Artist: Artist: Victoria A. with Cover Design by BuckeyeGrrl Designs

Sales Link:  Amazon

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More About “Hush”:

Wren is one of “the gifted”—a college sophomore with the power to compel others’ feelings and desires. He uses his power as a game of sexual consent until Cameron, a naïve freshman, enters his life. As Cameron begins to understand his sexuality and gain confidence under Wren’s tutelage, Wren grows to recognize new and unexpected things about himself. Can their game become a relationship as the power shifts from teacher to student?

Pages or Words: 278 pages

Categories: Contemporary, Erotica, Fiction, Gay Fiction, M/M Romance, New Adult, Paranormal, Romance

 Hush Excerpt:

Wren looks… different. His eyes are wide in what seems almost like surprise. His lips, darker than Cam’s ever seen them, tremble. Cam doesn’t need any of Wren’s abilities to catch that Wren is overwhelmed. The only thing Cam knows how to offer is what he himself would want.

“Kiss me?” he asks.

Beautifully, Wren doesn’t resist. His clothes are rough against Cam’s skin all those zippers are so cold where Cam radiates heat. When Wren drapes himself on top of Cam, his body is heavier than Cam had imagined. Wren kisses Cam softly, seeking something, and Cam wants to believe it’s from a feeling of closeness, something sweet like the gratitude he feels right now. He cannot believe he just did that—that he let Wren do that. Hulled and shaking, Cam lets his hands wander because even after that perfect storm of pleasure, there is an itch under his skin for more.

About the author:

Jude Sierra first began writing poetry as a child in her home country of Brazil. Still a student of the form, she has expanded her repertoire with her first novel, Hush.

She began writing long-form fiction by tackling her first National Novel Writing Month project in 2007, and in 2011 began writing in online fan communities, where her stories have thousands of readers.

Where to find the author:

Website: http://www.Judesierra.com
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/JudeMSierra
Twitter: @judesierra

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Wake Up Your Wild Side

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Cover Reveal Time for Mia Kerick’s Love Spell (cover reveal and giveaway)

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Its Cover Reveal Time for Love Spell by Mia Kerick
Release Date: June 1, 2015

Goodreads Link
Publisher: Cool Dudes Publishing
Cover Artist: Louis C. Harris

Sales Link:  Amazon

Photo

Blurb:

Strutting his stuff on the catwalk in black patent leather pumps and a snug orange tuxedo as this year’s Miss (ter) Harvest Moon feels so very right to Chance César, and yet he knows it should feel so very wrong.

As far back as he can remember, Chance has been “caught between genders.” (It’s quite a touchy subject; so don’t ask him about it.)  However, he does not question his sexual orientation. Chance has no doubt about his gayness—he is very much out of the closet at his rural New Hampshire high school, where the other students avoid the kid they refer to as “girl-boy.”

But at the local Harvest Moon Festival, when Chance, the Pumpkin Pageant Queen, meets Jasper Donahue, the Pumpkin Carving King, sparks fly. So Chance sets out, with the help of his BFF, Emily, to make “Jazz” Donahue his man.

An article in an online women’s magazine, Ten Scientifically Proven Ways to Make a Man Fall in Love with You (with a bonus love spell thrown in for good measure), becomes the basis of their strategy to capture Jazz’s heart.

Quirky, comical, definitely flamboyant, and with an inner core of poignancy, Love Spell celebrates the diversity of a gender-fluid teen.

Pages or Words: 44,300 words

Categories: Contemporary, Gay Fiction, Romance, Young Adult

Excerpt:

“Do you really wanna go there?”

Unlike the fake lunch block that I spend every day with Jazz, my real lunch block with Emily has been a total bitch lately. I can’t say who the major target of the bullshit is—Emmy or me—as neither of us has a sizeable fan club at Fiske High School. But I will say that the front table by the salad bar can be a cold place, and that’s not just because of the draft that comes in from the hallway.

“Nice makeup, girl-boy.” It seems Edwin Darling hasn’t forgotten my nickname from grade school, which sucks for me.

But this diva never backs down. “Thanks. Haven’t you heard—I was the head makeup artist on Evita?”

“Eh-what-uh?” Eddie the Appalling wrinkles his greasy forehead and runs his hand over his buzz-cut hair. Clearly, he is unfamiliar with Tony Award winning Broadway musicals. Not that I’m shocked. He quickly shifts his attention to Emily. “How do you put up with him, fat-ass?”

My BFF isn’t as good as I am at deflecting evil taunts. She looks up at him with wide eyes and seems to lose her appetite, pushing her salad toward the middle of the table.

“Oh, that’s cold, my darling Eddie.” (See what I did with his name, there? Clever, I know.) I stand up. “I wouldn’t go there if I were you.” I then “rawr” at him like a ticked-off tigress, throwing in a clawing gesture to get my point across. “Do you really wanna go there?”

I can tell by the look on his face that he’s remembering how long it took for the scratches on his face to heal after our last entanglement.

“I personally could live without going there, but you know me—I’m impulsive as hell.” I fold my arms across my chest and thrust out my right hip. “Piss me off and I’m likely to do abso-fucking-lutely anything.”

The bulk of my attention is focused on my adversary, but it’s impossible to miss that we’ve gathered an audience. An audience of indifferent “watchers”—the multitudes of apathetic teens who will later text each other, “did you see the homo and the bully go head-to-head at lunch today?” They don’t matter one smidgeon in the scheme of things, but my Emily does.

At this point, Eddie and I are eye-to-eye and chest-to-chest. Lucky for him, one of his thugs bails him out. “Get too close to that fag and you’ll get AIDS—am I wrong?” The big oaf grabs Eddie by the arm and pulls him away.

But he doesn’t remove his gaze from mine. “You better watch out when we’re off school grounds, pansy.”

If I said I didn’t shudder, I’d be lying.

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About the author:

Photo_2Mia Kerick is the mother of four exceptional children—all named after saints—and five nonpedigreed cats—all named after the next best thing to saints, Boston Red Sox players. Her husband of twenty-two years has been told by many that he has the patience of Job, but don’t ask Mia about that, as it is a sensitive subject.

Mia focuses her stories on the emotional growth of troubled young people and their relationships, and she believes that physical intimacy has a place in a love story, but not until it is firmly established as a love story. As a teen, Mia filled spiral-bound notebooks with romantic tales of tortured heroes (most of whom happened to strongly resemble lead vocalists of 1980s big-hair bands) and stuffed them under her mattress for safekeeping. She is thankful to Dreamspinner Press, Harmony Ink Press, CoolDudes Publishing, and CreateSpace for providing her with alternate places to stash her stories.

Mia is a social liberal and cheers for each and every victory made in the name of human rights, especially marital equality. Her only major regret: never having taken typing or computer class in school, destining her to a life consumed with two-fingered pecking and constant prayer to the Gods of Technology.

Stop by Mia’s Blog with questions or comments, or simply share what’s on your mind. Find Mia on Facebook, Goodreads, and Amazon.
Where to find the author:

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/mia.kerick?fref=ts
Twitter: http://twitter.com/MiaKerick
Pinterest: http://www,pinterest.com/miakerick/

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Tour Dates & Stops:

Parker Williams, Inked Rainbow Reads, Love Bytes, Bike Book Reviews, BFD Book Blog, Carly’s Book Reviews, My Fiction Nook, Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Boy Meets Boy Reviews, 3 Chicks After Dark, Chris McHart, EE Montgomery, Divine Magazine, Elisa – My Reviews and Ramblings, Boys on the Brink Reviews, MM Good Book Reviews, Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents, Velvet Panic, Up All Night, Read All Day, Cate Ashwood, Nephylim, Mikky’s World of Books, Rainbow Gold Reviews, Because Two Men Are Better Than One, Prism Book Alliance, Bayou Book Junkie, Amanda C. Stone, Molly Lolly, The Novel Approach, Jessie G. Books, Hearts on Fire, Cathy Brockman Romances

Contest

Must be 18 years of age or older to enter. Link and prizes provided by the author and Pride Promotions. Enter to win a Rafflecopter Prize: $25Amazon Gift Certificate.

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