A Paul B Review: Sharing a Demon’s Bond (A Loving Nip #5) by Charlie Richards

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Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Sharing a Demon's Bond coverPeople have been found dead with a smile on their face. Rumors of a demon being in the area have the local vampire coven nervous. When Peter Connelly, human blood donor and protectorate of the coven goes missing, the search to find him begins.

Peter Connelly has lived in a vampire coven since he was six years old. He has spent the past 20 years in the company of different paranormal species. Surely, he knows all there is to know about other beings. When he meets a sexy man in a diner, he feels an instant attraction to him. He begins to wonder if this man might be a paranormal and he might be his mate. After all, he has seen all the signs when members of the vampire coven have found the beloved.

Balthazar is a demon. He has spent the past millennium serving his master bringing him souls. After such a length of service, a demon may find his amina, his soul. He must complete his bonding within a three day period before he must wait another thousand years for the chance to find his mate. Balthazar spots Peter in a local diner. He follows Peter in the restroom. Knowing that Peter is at least aware of vampires from his smell, Balthazar informs Peter that he is his amina. He convinces Peter to offer himself and whisks him away to his cabin in the woods.
Toni Bastille has been Peter’s lover for the past 7 years. Although they are quite close, Toni knows that Peter is not his beloved. So they keep their relationship open in order to allow each of them to find their mate. When Toni realizes that Peter has not returned from his errand, he begins to worry. With the possibility of a demon on the loose, he wants to find Peter as soon as possible.

After the vampire coven has found the hideout and the three men come to an understanding as to what will happen in the future, outside forces kidnap Peter. Balthazar, who knows he must complete the bonding ceremony soon or else lose his chance forever with Peter, seeks the aid of the vampire coven. Will they find Peter in time for Balthazar to find his soul?

This is the fifth book in the Loving Nip series by Charlie Richards. This series focuses on the various vampires that have been introduced into her Stone Ridge universe. I like the introduction of demons into the series. It could give Ms Richard’s an avenue of another series within her universe. I found myself pleased that Peter has finally found his mate yet ache for Toni as he has lost his companion for the last few years through no fault of his own. I hope that Toni will soon find his own beloved to soothe his broken heart.

Carmen Waters’ cover once again strikes the right tone for the book. It shows a shirtless Peter in the foreground with what looks like Balthazar’s demon in the doorway of the local vampire coven or his cottage in the woods.

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

Book details
Ebook: 87 pages
ISBN: 978-1-4874-0437-6
Published: July 1, 2015 by Extasy Books
Edition: English

Series: A Loving Nip
• A Nip of Good Cheer (Loving Nip #1)
A Rose for Paul’s Protector (Loving Nip #2)
• An Unforgettable Bite (Loving Nip #3)
More than Patient (Loving Nip #4)
• Sharing a Demon’s Bond (Loving Nip #5)

A MelanieM Review: Blue Steel Chain (Trowchester Blues #3) by Alex Beecroft

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

BlueSteelChain_600x900At sixteen, Aidan Swift was swept off his feet by a rich older man who promised to take care of him for the rest of his life. But eight years later, his sugar daddy has turned from a prince into a beast. Trapped and terrified, Aidan snatches an hour’s respite at the Trowchester Museum.

Local archaeologist James Summers is in a failing long distance relationship with a rock star, and Aidan—nervous, bruised, and clearly in need of a champion—brings out all his white knight tendencies. When everything falls apart for Aidan, James saves him from certain death . . . and discovers a skeleton of another boy who wasn’t so lucky.

As Aidan recovers, James falls desperately in love. But though Aidan acts like an adoring boyfriend, he doesn’t seem to feel any sexual attraction at all. Meanwhile there are two angry exes on the horizon, one coming after them with the press and the other with a butcher’s knife. To be together, Aidan and James must conquer death, sex, and everyone’s preconceptions about the right way to love—even their own.

There are certain books you approach with definite expectations of what you will find with the characters and plot.  Sometimes those expectations are met, other times they aren’t.  But on those rare occasions, something else happens, a book doesn’t exceed your expectations, it blows them all to hell, widening your horizons and smacking you in the face with your assumptions.  That’s what occurred  with Alex Beecroft’s Blue Steel Chain, the 3rd book in the Trowchester  Blues series.

My love for the previous novels is apparent in the reviews I wrote and the author interview I conducted.  Alex Beecroft brought alive the small village of Trowchester, with its canals, long boats, antique bookshops, Morris Dancers, historic reinactors and characters of every type imaginable, every type except boring and uninspired. Up until now Beecroft has ushered me into her world with such amazing details such as musical instruments of antiquity I yearned to hear, dances I wanted to watch and a place I desperately wanted to be real.  Her characters, wounded, snarky, and amazing made me laugh, cry and nod my head in recognition and joy.   Then came Blue Steel Chain and everything went topsy turvy.

Where to start when everything is unexpected and sometimes hard to understand?

Blue Steel Chain is beautifully written and thought provoking.  And for me, it was also hard, emotionally, to digest at times.  At the heart of all the thoughts and feelings whirling around in my head is the character of Aidan Swift.  At sixteen, already thrown away by his family for his sexuality, he is fair prey for an older man hiding sick, abusive behaviors and deeds.  Now eight years later, Aidan is a perpetually frightened, submissive, abused young man.  Sometimes left chained and alone for hours as punishment, isolated from all around him, his state of mind is one of fear, chaos, an overwhelming need to please and much , much more.

Alex Beecroft makes Aiden so real your heart bleeds for him and your stomach churns during the scenes he has with his abuser.  Trust me, those are hard to take because we have quickly come to love Aiden so.  But Aiden has another secret.  He’s asexual.  That makes those scenes where he is being sexually abused even more problematic.  Why?  Because of the way he sees them.  I thought I understood what  asexuality meant.  Apparently not.

I don’t think I’ve ever encountered a character  (or author for that matter) recently that made me question my assumptions about sexuality and relationships as Aiden and Alex Beecroft have. We live in Aiden’s skin here.  Every moment, every thought that occurs from his  brief secret excursions away from the house where he is kept, out over the meadows, into the local museum where archaeologist James Summers is toiling over the latest batch of “finds” and having his own relationship issues.  Aiden’s brief moments of joy, his initial fear of Jamie, his curiosity and ,man,, this makes me want to cry again, his love of pottery and the art he was forced to abandon…we are there inside him, listening and weeping.  And hoping for a rescue.

Jamie too needs help. We’re let into his point of view as well, important in a story such as this one. His long term  relationship has diminished to the point that he rarely sees his “partner, and when he does, he dissolves into  a doormat for his rockstar lover to walk over. Jamie too is a believable human being, full of frailties, preoccupied with his bits and pieces of antiquity and his life in Trowchester.  It takes the arrival of Aiden in his life to shake up the status quo and get him moving again.  Jamie is not asexual but gay with a healthy appetite that’s been repressed by his current relationship and lover.

There are some incredibly scary scenes that involve characters from the previous stories who help Aiden escape and start a new life.  These moments in the novel are heart-stopping, white-knuckle, “wap your head against the wall” exciting and frustrating, all at the same time.  You know those bits where you are yelling at the actors on the scene to get moving?  Yep, that happens here.  But its what comes later that will blow your perceptions of romance and a relationship to bits.  Some will like it, some will love it and others won’t get it at all.  At times, I was all  three.

Ever think what it must be like to be asexual and love someone who is not?  What does it mean to be in a relationship when one partner loves sex and the other doesn’t?  How does that work?  If it does? Beecroft takes those questions and gives us some answers through the relationship dynamics between Jamie and Aiden.  At times I found myself shaking my head, thinking this can’t possibly work  But a conversation with a friend who is asexual basically confirmed that is does, more often than we think.

Can a relationship work when you must schedule times for sex because to do otherwise is an abuse of another’s wishes and needs?  Can a sexual being truly understand how an asexual person feels and act accordingly?  And visa versa?  These are all issues Alex Beecroft brings into her characters and storyline.  It made me rethink my own assumptions about relationships, what works, what doesn’t and  Steel Blue Chain has left me with even more questions and jumbled ideas, making me revaluate what I thought I knew about people, recovery and love. And did so through the character of a wounded,yet resilient young man called Aiden.

Blue Steel Chain came very close to a five star rating but a few things still bothered me at the end.   There was so much going on here that I thought the idea of all those years of abuse would leave mental, emotional scarring far wore than the physical marks Aiden wore from his time in captivity.  Yes, it was mentioned he was seeing a therapist, but it felt a little glossed over and not in keeping with the realism of the rest of the story.   Perhaps that would have made this a 600 page story, who knows?

Still, I find that Blue Steel Chain is the most ambitious and surprising of the three novels.  Is it my favorite? No. Is it the most remarkable?  Yes, I think so. Blue Steel Chain will challenge your perceptions of love and romance, it will make you rethink your definitions of love and long term happiness.  And it makes me yearn for more of this remarkable village, its incrediblely human and addicting inhabitants, and the stories they still have to tell.

Cover Art by Lou Harper.  I  like the branding, the tone and design works with all three stories but I’m just not sure that model works for any of the characters within.

Sales Links:  Riptide Publishing | All  Romance (ARe) | Amazon | Buy It Here

Book Details:

ebook, 250 pages
Published July 27th 2015 by Riptide Publishing (first published July 25th 2015)
original titleBlue Steel Chain
ISBN139781626492066
edition languageEnglish

Trowchester: it’s the fourth smallest city in Britain, and visitors sometimes think it hasn’t left the Middle Ages yet. There’s a Bronze Age barrow, a wide network of ley lines, the best tea shop in the county, and more morris dancers than you can shake a stick at. Trowchester attracts those who have been hurt and those who are looking for sanctuary from the modern world. But scratch the surface and there’s murder and mayhem aplenty. People come here to find love, but they’re forced to learn bravery first.

The release order of the Trowchester series is Trowchester Blues, Blue Eyed Stranger, and Blue Steel Chain, but you can start with withichever book catches your eye; they each stand alone. I highly recommend them all.

Trowchester Blues (A Trowchester Blues Novel)
Blue Eyed Stranger (A Trowchester Blues Novel)
Blue Steel Chain (A Trowchester Blues Novel)

Alex Beecroft Returns to Trowchester with Blue Steel Chain (Trowchester Blues #3) A Stunning Novel! – giveaway

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Blue Steel Chain (Trowchester Blues #3)
by Alex Beecroft

Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Cover Artist: Lou Harper

Sales Link: Riptide Publishing

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About Blue Steel Chain:

At sixteen, Aidan Swift was swept off his feet by a rich older man who promised to take care of him for the rest of his life. But eight years later, his sugar daddy has turned from a prince into a beast. Trapped and terrified, Aidan snatches an hour’s respite at the Trowchester Museum.

Local archaeologist James Huntley is in a failing long distance relationship with a rock star, and Aidan—nervous, bruised, and clearly in need of a champion—brings out all his white knight tendencies. When everything falls apart for Aidan, James saves him from certain death . . . and discovers a skeleton of another boy who wasn’t so lucky.

As Aidan recovers, James falls desperately in love. But though Aidan acts like an adoring boyfriend, he doesn’t seem to feel any sexual attraction at all. Meanwhile there are two angry exes on the horizon, one coming after them with the press and the other with a butcher’s knife. To be together, Aidan and James must conquer death, sex, and everyone’s preconceptions about the right way to love—even their own.

Blue Steel Chain by Alex Beecroft is available from Riptide Publishing on July 27.

About Author Alex Beecroft

Alex Beecroft is an English author best known for historical fiction, notably Age of Sail, featuring gay characters and romantic storylines. Her novels and shorter works include paranormal, fantasy, and contemporary fiction.

Beecroft won Linden Bay Romance’s (now Samhain Publishing) Starlight Writing Competition in 2007 with her first novel, Captain’s Surrender, making it her first published book. On the subject of writing gay romance, Beecroft has appeared in the Charleston City Paper, LA Weekly, the New Haven Advocate, the Baltimore City Paper, and The Other Paper. She is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association of the UK and an occasional reviewer for the blog  HYPERLINK “http://speakitsname.com/” \n _blankSpeak Its Name, which highlights historical gay fiction.

Alex was born in Northern Ireland during the Troubles and grew up in the wild countryside of the English Peak District. She lives with her husband and two children in a little village near Cambridge and tries to avoid being mistaken for a tourist.

Alex is only intermittently present in the real world. She has led a Saxon shield wall into battle, toiled as a Georgian kitchen maid, and recently taken up an 800-year-old form of English folk dance, but she still hasn’t learned to operate a mobile phone.

She is represented by Louise Fury of the L. Perkins Literary Agency.

Connect with Alex:

Website:  “http://alexbeecroft.com/
Blog:  http://alexbeecroft.com/blog
Facebook:http://www.facebook.com/AlexBeecroftAuthor
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/Alex_Beecroft
Goodreads:  http://www.goodreads.com/Alex_Beecroftt

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Giveaway:

Every comment on this blog tour enters you in a drawing for a signed paperback from Alex Beecroft’s backlist. (Any title which has a paperback edition, excluding Blue Steel Chain.) Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on July 25. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Don’t forget to add your email so we can contact you if you win!  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.

Trowchester Blues ( A Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words ★★★★★ Series)

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Trowchester Blues coverBlue eyed Stranger coverBlueSteelChain_600x900

 

 

 

 

Trowchester: it’s the fourth smallest city in Britain, and visitors sometimes think it hasn’t left the Middle Ages yet. There’s a Bronze Age barrow, a wide network of ley lines, the best tea shop in the county, and more morris dancers than you can shake a stick at. Trowchester attracts those who have been hurt and those who are looking for sanctuary from the modern world. But scratch the surface and there’s murder and mayhem aplenty. People come here to find love, but they’re forced to learn bravery first.

The release order of the Trowchester series is Trowchester Blues, Blue Eyed Stranger, and Blue Steel Chain, but you can start with withichever book catches your eye; they each stand alone.  We highly recommend them all.

– See more at Riptide Publishing’s Trowchester Blues  series page.

 

Its More Storming Love with MLR Press’ Storming Love: Earthquake Collection (giveway)

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MLR Press: Storming Love: Earthquake
Publisher: MLR Press
Cover Artist: Kris Jacen

Sales Links: Amazon

 | MLR Press

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Author Mini Interview with Nicole Dennis

Today I’m very lucky to be interviewing Nicole Dennis, author of Earthquake: Xavier & Devin

Hi Nicole, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Tell us a little about yourself, your background, and your current book.

Hello and thanks for having me. I’m a quiet single author with a furry kid – known as Fat Cat. I grew up in NJ and moved to Florida with the family. For some odd reason, I stayed in this sauna of a state. My current book is part of the MLR Press Storming Love series of natural disasters. From the title – this is the Earthquake series, one of six books, all set in the same place during the same disaster. Since everyone is familiar with California quakes, the other authors and I decided to change things up. We chose the great state of Alaska.
• Where do you find your inspiration?
From almost anything can inspire me. A movie, a TV show, another book, and music. Sometimes those darn plot bunnies come all on their own and attack with ideas.

• When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I dabbled for so long, I was always a writer. I became an ‘author’ when I signed my first contract for a short story that was part of an anthology.

• Do your characters become like real people to you?
Oh yes, I argue and complain to them all the time about not cooperating with me or going a completely different direction than I decided.

• If you weren’t a writer, what else would you like to have done?
I would love to have been an artist of some type. No matter what, I have this creative need.

• What do you want your tombstone to say?
LOL. What a question… Umm.
A writer who shared her rainbow with others.

Now more about the Storming Love: Earthquake Collection!

Book Names & Blurbs:

7/3 Gabriel & Avery by Ann Anderson

Earthquake Cover - AnnLoneliness has been Gabriel’s companion for since his parents’ passing, growing with each sibling that leaves home to start their own life. When a big earthquake hits Alaska, Gabriel finds himself taking in Avery, his two daughters, and their grandmother and relishes not being so alone. Yet, Gabriel feels a spark of recognition he can’t explain about Avery, but more than that, he likes the company and wishes he could have a deeper relationship with the man. But when the small family has their new home, what could make Avery want to stay?

7/10 Derek and Hayden by Megan Linden

Earthquake Cover - MeganDerek Warden is certain his boss sent him to cover the conference in the middle of nowhere, Alaska, to punish him for something. After an unpleasant phone call from his father who tries to stop him from going, Derek is ready for the whole thing to be over before it even begins.

Hayden Shaw has been looking forward to this conference for months. The problem of fracking is very dear to his heart and he couldn’t wait to spend the long weekend with like-minded people.
Neither of them expected the big earthquake, but most importantly – they didn’t expect each other. Meeting again after over a decade may result in something even more surprising that the ground trembling under their feet.

7/17 Rhody & Brendan by Diana DeRicci

Earthquake Cover - DianaRhody Witte is on his way to Alaska for two weeks of fishing and not much else. Mountains, clean air, and all the bait he can waste. What he gets is the largest earthquake to rock the Alaskan wilds in sixty-plus years.

Brendan Skorvarski isn’t the kind of man Rhody usually finds himself attracted to, much less want to know, but there’s something in the gentle giant that Rhody can’t seem to resist.

When they’re locked up in a cabin together for days in the Alaskan wilderness, resistance seems futile when survival takes precedence. Especially their survival when Rhody sees a bear outside their window.

7/24 Anders & Ujaruk by Caraway Carter

Earthquake Cover - CarawayGeologist Anders Thorpe has sworn off relationships with colleagues, after his last one ended in a dirty little game of sabotage. Six months later and he’s preparing to camp and investigate a gold mine that might still be active. He’s joined by Ujaruk an archaeologist who fights an inner battle with the fact that he’s a native Aleut, and wondering if he’ll ever find the perfect man.

Will Anders break his vow? Will Ujaruk find the right guy? Will they survive whatever is thrown their way?

7/31 Xavier & Devin by Nicole Dennis

Earthquake Cover - NicoleTremors are a part of everyday life in big Alaska.

Bush pilot, Xavier Markovic, goes with nature’s flow and loves it. He guides guests through Denali National Park to show off his beloved state. Until health issues arise for his mentor, Daniel Chevalier, and Xavier flies him to the hospital.

An almost fatal tumble down a mountain ends Devin Chevalier’s professional mountain biking career and brings him to a crossroads. Learning his grandfather is ill, he makes a rash decision. Uprooting his life for a chance to meet Daniel, he crosses paths with a brash Alaskan.

Alaska throws them another surprise in the form of a huge earthquake. Differences put aside while they struggle to survive.

8/7 Asher and Emmett by Anna Lee

Earthquake Cover - AnnaCelebrating their fifth anniversary, Asher and Emmett are on a romantic getaway in a cabin in Alaska. They have plans to adopt when they return home. But their paradise is destroyed when a huge earthquakes hits. Being a firefighter and a paramedic, both men put themselves at risk to save others when the tragedy strikes. Will they be able to make it home to start a family?

Pages or Words: Varies by book

Categories: Contemporary, Erotica, Gay Fiction, Historical, M/M Romance, Paranormal (Please keep in mind that not all stories feature all categories)

 

Author Names, Bios, and Release Dates:

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7/3 Ann Anderson
Born and raised in Illinois, Ann spends her time reading, writing, working, and playing video games whenever the cats, and her family, don’t demand her attention. The second born of four, Ann has learned to listen and observe, a skill she’s honed because the simplest words or gestures can be the next big story idea, and she’s always on the lookout for ideas.
Contact Info:
E-mail: author_ann_anderson@yahoo.com
Blog: http://authorannanderson.blogspot.com

7/10 Megan Linden
Megan is one of those people who dreamed of being a writer since they were a little kid and then didn’t do anything about it for years. Then as a teenager she was introduced to fandom and… well. She fell head first into it and never looked back. At some point she decided to try writing her own characters in her own stories. And that’s where she is today.
Megan is also a psychologist and continues to learn the hard way that she can’t give all her clients their happy ending (she truly believes everyone can save themselves, though). That’s why she makes sure to give it to her characters, always.
Contact Info:
Email: meganlindencom@gmail.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/megan.linden.54
Website/Blog: http://www.meganlinden.com/
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7789392.Megan_Linden

7/17 Diana DeRicci
Diana DeRicci is the sexy, flirty pen name of Diana Castilleja. A romance author at heart, DeRicci’s writing takes you into a saucier spectrum of sensuality and sexual adventure, where a happily-ever-after is still the key to any story. Diana lives in Central Texas with her husband, one son and a feisty little Chihuahua named Rascal. You can catch the latest news on all of Diana DeRicci’s writing and books on her website. Feel free to drop Diana an email. She’d love to hear from you.
Contact Info:
Website/Blog: http://dianadericci.com/

7/24 Caraway Carter
Caraway Carter has worn numerous hats. He’s been a furniture salesman, a dresser, a costumer, an actor/waiter, a rabble rouser, a poet and most recently a writer. He married his husband on Halloween and they are the loving parents of two rambunctious cats. He loves words and stringing them together, he loves sex and sexy men, he loves seeing how far his muse will take him and he’s looking forward to entertaining you.
Contact Info:
Email: carawaycarter@gmail.com
Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/CarawayCarter?fref=nf
Website/Blog: http://www.carawaycarter.com/
Goodreads: Group: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13539002.Caraway_Carter

7/31 Nicole Dennis
A quiet one growing up, Nicole Dennis left reality for the comfort of books, filling a personal library over the years. Characters started talking about their own stories. Writing them down whether during or after class, she continues to this day. She lets others meet her characters, walk through her worlds, and sigh as a romance overcomes all obstacles. All of her romances include delightful twists of GLBT, paranormal, fantasy, and erotica and always have their Happily Ever Afters.
She lives and works in Central Florida. Thanks to a quiet working environment, she can escape into her stories. At home, a semi-demonic tortie calico, affectionately known as Fat Cat on social media, rules their home.
Contact Info:
Email: nicoledennis.author@gmail.com
Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/nicoledennis.author/
Website/Blog: http://nicoledennisauthor.blogspot.com
Goodreads: Member: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2791975.Nicole_Dennis

8/7 Anna Lee
Anna Lee graduated from the University of California Riverside with a Bachelor’s Degree in Creative Writing. Living with a disability, she has overcome many challenges and puts her passion for life and love into her writing. She lives with her family and dogs and enjoys writing late into the night. When she isn’t writing, Anna enjoys spending time with her nieces and nephew or chatting with her friends about her favorite books and TV shows.
Contact Info:
Email: annalee509@gmail.com
Twitter: annalee59
Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/authorannalee
Website/Blog: http://www.storiesbyannalee.com

Giveaway

Enter to win a Rafflecopter Prize: $30 gift card.  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.  Link and prizes provided by the MLR Press and Pride Promotions.
Rafflecopter Code:
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Final

Tour Dates & Stops:
9-Jul
Dawn’s Reading Nook
16-Jul
The Hat Party
Bayou Book Junkie
23-Jul
Velvet Panic
30-Jul
Mikky’s World of Books
Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words
6-Aug
Hearts on Fire
Jessie G. Books
13-Aug
MM Good Book Reviews
The Novel Approach
20-Aug
Happily Ever Chapter
Prism Book Alliance
27-Aug
Inked Rainbow Reads
BFD Book Blog
Love Bytes