A MelanieM Review: Diamond Edge (Ace of Diamonds #3) by Laura Harner (Pulp Friction 2015 #12)

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Rating: 5 stars out  of 5     ★★★★★

Diamond Edge coverAlpha Jet Gorman might once have been a reluctant leader, but when he discovers someone is willing to murder in order to hide the origins of the newest members of the pack, his protective instincts are out in full force. To prevent further injury to the younger wolves, he works to uncover the truth of his deceased lover’s past—but the real answers he seeks may remain elusive as ever.

As an ancient vampire and former executioner for the Vampire Council, Nico Sanzio da Urbino takes a longer view when it comes to telling the truth—all is fair if you get there eventually—but the conflict between duty and heart have never been so personal. The price may be more than he is willing to pay as he attempts to keep his own secrets intact while helping Jet uncover the previous Alpha’s mysterious past.

With the New Orleans preternatural population continuing to increase at an unnatural rate, the local Alpha and the Odd Squad’s chief enforcer should have their attention focused on maintaining the human-to-super status quo, but with things between them heating up, their mutual distraction could prove deadly.

Give me the right vampire/werewolf combination and I’m all in.  With Jet and Nico, Laura Harner has her vampire and werewolf dynamic balance exactly right. Its on the edge, the power shifting subtly to each side from moment to moment. Nico and Jet are drawn to each other past what either had anticipated. One has age and knowledge, the other a youthfulness as well as a ability to love that the vampire has been missing. But their pull on each other goes beyond attraction and the need for blood into something unnamed and unknown…as yet.

Harner makes this attraction between Nico and Jet white hot and sizzling. Their scenes together when they finally give in to their feelings of lust…well, bring  on the fans!  But it was more.  Jet was still in so much pain over the loss of Russ and reeling from the revelations that their investigations were uncovering about the rogue baby wolves and Russ’ involvement. To have him, accept Nico and give him blood? That moment of exposure and acceptance? Made me love this couple even more. Then came the undercurrents of mystery and hidden secrets Jet was receiving from Nico and others  which had Jet starting to  wonder who exactly he could trust.  So typical of this series.

I loved the buildup of suspense.  The two point perspective helps to build our anticipation of further “emotional explosions” and angst to come, because we’re in the heads of  both our beloved  protagonists, for better or sometimes for worse.  In case of this story and ending, far, far, worse.

Diamonds Edge,  so sharp it can cut the hardest of materials, is by far my favorite so far.  That ending is a killer!  Now I need more.  Won’t get it, but definitely want it.  This series is so addicting!  Grab up all the stories and make it yours.  Must be read in the order they were written.   I highly recommend them all.  Read them one by one or wait until they are finished and binge read.  Whatever is your reading pleasure!

Cover Art by Laura Harner.  This is my favorite yet.  I don’t know if its because I’m just a back slut or if its because that stormy background combined with the muscly back gives off the supernatural vibes I’ve been looking for, either way, I love this.

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

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 73 pages
Published July 30th 2015 by Hot Corner Press
ASIN B0134S3J5M
edition language English

 

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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 Fellow
Up the Ante (Four of Clubs: 2 ) by Parker Williams
Diamond Draw (Ace of Diamonds: 2) by Laura Harner

Round Three:

Dead Button (Jack of Spades #3) by Lee Brazil
Blind Man’s Bluff (King of Hearts #3) by Havan Fellows
The Devil’s Playground (Four of Clubs #3) by Parker Williams
Diamonds Edge (Ace of Diamonds #3) by Laura Harner

A Little Afternoon Talking Trash With the Don of Doms and the Submission (Submit for Redemption, #1) by Robert Cage & Kathryn Sparrow

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TITLE: Submission (Submit for Redemption # 1) by
PUBLISHER: Storm Moon Press
RELEASE DATE: April 17, 2015
GENRE: BDSM Romance

BOOK LINKS:  Storm Moon Press  | Goodreads |  Amazon | Barnes and Noble  |  All Romance (ARe) 

Submission Banner

Talking Trash with the Don of the Doms!  A Special Guest Post!

Hi everybody! I’m Robert Cage, one of the co-authors (along with Kathryn Sparrow) of Submission: Submit for Redemption, Book One. Thanks for hosting us today.

In the excerpt above, masochistic Army Ranger Everett Palmer meets His Grace, Finny Bainbridge for the first time. Finny has just rescued Ev from a violent assault by one of the more sex-crazed and disturbed patrons of Cuffed Links, an illegally operated underground BDSM club in Kabul Afghanistan. Hopefully you get a sense that there’s a lot of electricity passing between these two MCs. It only gets more intense as Finny draws Everett further into his illicit world.

Finny is a somewhat mysterious figure for most of Book One. He’s hiding a lot, mostly from Everett. Wanting only to capture Everett and coerce a confession from him, Finny finds himself falling deeply, inexplicably in love with the younger captain, which both thrills him and knocks him off balance.

We were lucky enough to get a transcription of a telephone interview conducted by Good Reads UK reviewer extraordinaire, Jessie Cox. Her mission, which she generously and gamely accepted, was to interview His Grace from his eponymously-dubbed Greek isle, Phineas, on the morning of his departure, with Everett. Here’s the interview in its entirety, Brit to Brit.

Jessie: Good afternoon, Your Grace. Thanks for dropping by.

Finny: Thank you, Jessie. How do you do? And call me Finny, my friends all do. I don’t often find myself on the other end of an interrogation, as you know [laughs]. Please—go easy on me.

Jessie: I’ll try, but I warn you I have Habib’s number in my pocket as well as a set of thumbscrews in case you’re stubborn.

Finny: Ouch! You’re ruthless—but a woman after my own heart.

Jessie: Quite right. So, what was your relationship with your parents like?

Finny: Right into the fray, eh? You don’t pull punches. [Pauses] To quote the Coen Brother’s delightful film Raising Arizona, it wasn’t Ozzie and Harriet. I lost my mother when I was young, and even when she was alive I believe I saw her once a day for perhaps an hour, after tea. It’s made it hard to even picture her face in my mind or hear her voice at this point. Father was a complete nightmare. When he was around, there was always something wrong it seemed, usually involving me. We never really connected. I was much closer to Habib, my father’s valet and now mine. Father used to have Habib discipline me when I was younger but it wasn’t very effective—we would both usually end up in giggles or tears, sometimes both. Habib never needed to strike me in order to get my nose back in joint. One stern look from him and the wind would exit my sails faster than you could say Jack Robinson.

Jessie: What accomplishment are you most proud of?

Finny: If I can’t name Finding the Love of my Life, in Everett, I’d say… well, that’s a tough one. To be frank, I’m not proud of anything I’ve done. Quite the opposite. I guess it would be a toss-up between starting to weed out contract interrogation jobs that are just wrong. Funny how that’s happened. I used to be such a terrifying son-of-a-bitch. Now, anytime I’m faced with a potential subject all I can see is Everett’s face. Pain is something I’m finding it harder and harder to take pleasure in, unless it’s with Everett, and in a consensual context. It almost feels a violation of our contract to share that with anyone else. Frankly, it has me a bit worried, but maybe it’s a cue that I’m in the wrong line of work altogether. Wouldn’t father find that funny? I’m proud of finally dumping Hector Ventana. What a disaster that was—he only brought out the worst in me, entirely the opposite of Everett in every way. Hector, if you’re reading this, it serves you right. Why are you still obsessing over me? As the yanks say, get a life!

Jessie: What is your most prized possession?

Finny: That’s another thing. Prior to Ev, I wouldn’t know where to start with the list—I have many beautiful things. But now they don’t seem so precious in light of having someone I can truly give my heart to. Though of course I don’t own Ev, not by a long shot. I don’t think anyone owns Everett. And—that bothers me a bit. Old habits die hard, you know. But in answer to your question, I think it would have to be a pair of antique watch fobs that date back a few hundred years, one of which I recently gifted to Everett. Though oddly enough, mine seems to have gone missing as of late.

Jessie: What was losing your virginity like?

Finny: Liberating. Terrifying—amazing. It was after a fencing match at Eton. I’d had my eye on this young man for some months and it was one of those things where each time I’d glance at him, I’d find he was doing the same. And not just glancing, our eyes were exploring each other. Granted, I think this happened quite a bit at fencing events—it certainly didn’t hurt that our uniforms were tight and clingy and we were always bathed in perspiration. This particular match was actually played on my family estate, so I had a very good lay of the land, as they say. Still, I was feeling more and more trepidatious as to what I would say to him—how could I express my feelings and not drive him away, yet also let him know how amazing I thought he was? And how would I get away with making a move on my home turf with forty or so staff roaming in and out of all those rooms. Turns out I didn’t have to say anything. He was waiting in the back of the hall for me just as I thought I’d lost him forever. We made love in a large dusty old closet—banging up against a stock of masks and foils—appropriate, isn’t it? [Laughs]. I spent god knows how many years getting up the nerve to come out of the closet and I find myself breaking cherry inside of one. That should have been a lesson, a harbinger of what was to come. Still, it was magic. My whole view of the world just opened up and a lot—not all—of my constant anger just seemed to leave me. Similar to how I’m feeling now, actually.

Jessie: Let talk more about Ev, since you’ve gone in that direction. What’s the biggest obstacle that you find in connecting with him? I assume you have your disagreements, as all couples do.

Finny: Oh yes. Right now, I’d say it’s trying to get him to see the forest for the trees, as they say. Ev comes from a simpler, more black-and-white world. He has had the responsibility of having many men under his direction in the Rangers but the effects of his decisions were always localized within his squad. The decisions I make can have ramifications all over the world, whether I like it or not. And when your scope of influence expands that far, you eventually hurt people as well as help them. That’s not something he understands just yet. Just as he doesn’t yet understand that I truly know what’s best for him. Not everyone is happy with our union, but I can’t speak too freely about that. He’s going to have to trust me as the road ahead may be difficult for him. But he should understand that, if he’s to keep to our contract as a willing submissive to me.

Jessie: Would you ever marry Ev? If so, where would you take him on your Honeymoon?

Finny: I get very nervous even thinking about that possibility. Not because I don’t want it, but because I don’t feel I’m quite worthy of him. Not yet, anyhow. And as I mentioned before, we still have a lot of hurdles to traverse. But where to go? The island I would think, seeing that it holds so many fond memories for us.

Jessie: The island you’re on now?

Finny: It does have everything we need. There are times I don’t ever want to leave it. Would be wonderful sometimes to just… stop the clock.

Jessie: What do you think is your biggest strength and your biggest weakness?

Finny: When I find something I want, I get it, no matter the cost. My tenacity is well-known. My weakness is that I sometimes don’t consider the cost of those things until it becomes too late. And there is always a cost—something I’m having a hard time learning. Sometimes that cost is monetary, but most often it’s emotional and even spiritual on occasion. I think spiritual cost is what’s taken its toll most on me, as of late.

Jessie: What is something sexual you haven’t yet tried but would like to?

Finny: [Pauses for several minutes, apparently in deep thought] No one’s ever asked me that. Outside of a few blatantly illegal, outright deviant acts, I can’t think of a damn thing. When I owned Cuffed Links, prior to giving it to Hector, I’d push the envelope in a number of directions. I used to take such pride in that. Now it all seems meaningless, a waste of time. The act isn’t what does it for me anymore. It’s hard to believe I’m even saying something like this. [Very long pause] The way I see it now, unless you’re with someone who means something to you, you might as well be banging a hole in the wall, a well-lubricated one, but still…. Why waste your time?

Jessie: Wrapping up, when you look into your future what do you see?

Finny: Everett and only Everett. Without him, there is no future—for me, anyhow. He’s the one thing I can’t afford to lose. And I can’t help wondering if there’s not a cost hidden in there somewhere that I’ve yet to encounter…. But, I must take my leave of you. Everett has quite a big decision to make this morning and we’re due back in Kabul today. Wish me well and it was wonderful chatting.

Jessie: Same here. I wish nothing but the best, Finny. Thanks again.

Contact either Kathryn or myself on Twitter or by email. We live to hear from readers!

Robert: @robertcage2 on Twitter or Robert@robertcage.com.
Kathryn: @KSparrowAuthor on Twitter or Kathryn@kathrynsparrow.com

BLURB:

When Army Ranger Captain Everett Palmer enters gay BDSM club Cuffed Links, he is seeking brutal punishment for what he perceives to be an unforgivable failure: allowing an entire squad of men under his command to dieSFR_book1_500 while he worked to defuse a bomb at his base. Everett initially wants only pure pain, which professional interrogator and jaded British aristocrat Colonel Phineas Bainbridge is more than prepared to give. Their meeting, however, is not at all by chance.

Phineas has been contracted to coerce a false confession from Everett, implicating the captain in planting the bomb. Phineas has tortured many men in the past, but there is something different about Everett Palmer, a man whose sheer purity of soul causes the colonel to question his every selfish, devious act and legion of war crimes.

In Submit for Redemption: Book One – Submission, erotic romance and spiritual redemption come from the most unexpected places – from the seedy extremes of a smoke-laden, neon-drenched bondage den to the tropical, hedonistic pleasures of Phineas’ private Greek island.

On this unbidden psychosexual odyssey, Everett and Phineas find exactly what they don’t expect: a chance to redeem their troubled souls and fulfil their every romantic ideal. But the clock is ticking. The deeper Phineas falls in love with Everett, the harder it becomes to finish his assigned task. If he succeeds, the consequences may be far more explosive than he ever anticipated.

TAGS: Gay, BDSM, Contemporary, LGBT, M/M, Military, Romance
HEAT LEVEL (1 being no sexual content, 5 being erotica): 4
PAIRING: Male/Male
LENGTH: 99,300 Words

EXCERPT

(NSFW – You confirm that you are 18 years of age or older by clicking on the link to continue reading).

AUTHORS BIO:

Kathryn Sparrow has had stories spinning around in her head her whole life and finally decided it was time to write them down. After working twenty years in the Software Industry, she has left the engineering world to be a chauffeur mom (because she doesn’t really get to stay-at-home). She lives with her fantastic, geek husband and her two adorable, sometimes infuriating daughters, who are too smart for their Mommy’s own good. If she had spare time she would spend it knitting, crocheting, cross-stitching, and doing any other handicrafts that catch her fancy.

Email | Website |  Twitter | Goodreads | Storm Moon Press Author Page
Robert Cage has been writing BDSM novels and short stories for close to twenty years, publishing on the Web through various e-book publishers. From 1997 to 2010 he authored four novels and one collection of short fiction under another pseudonym. He has always striven to make his fiction “more story and character-focused than much of what he sees published in the BDSM world.”

Robert has just released his first novel, which he coauthored with writing partner Kathryn Sparrow in the male romance genre. Available now in both Kindle and print formats from Storm Moon Press, it is titled Submit for Redemption/Book One: Submission and is the first book in a multibook series planned by Robert and Kathryn. Robert is currently busy at work on Just Desserts, a novel that is a prequel to Submit for Redemption/Book One: Submission. He and Kathryn also plan to release Submit for Redemption/Book Two: Domination soon, also from Storm Moon Press.

In addition to writing fiction, Robert collects books, music, and films avidly, and also contributes to a number of online film sites as a movie reviewer.
Email | Twitter } Website

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Barb, A Zany Old Lady Review :Not Safe for Work by Ingela Bohm

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Rating: 5 stars out of  5  ★★★★★

Not Safe For Work coverJakob is turning 34 and his best friend, Leo, isn’t there to help him celebrate. He’s gone to a software conference in London to unveil his revolutionary new software. This program gathers info from a PC and calculates the truth, filing in the blanks so a person doesn’t have to do more than give it the basics, and it will compose the rest of a thesis, story, or other document for the user.

Jakob is close to finishing his own work on his dissertation for his PhD. His doctoral thesis is on the slash fiction phenomenon from a linguistic perspective. But that isn’t foremost in his mind on his birthday—he has other priorities to focus on, especially when he receives an odd text message from Leo which leads him to start reading an unbelievable NSFW story penned by him to Leo! It’s on both Tumblr and Facebook and is quickly being picked up and reposted by users all over the world. The story is erotic and apparently establishes him and Leo as a couple, something that will be a shock to all of their friends and acquaintances who believe them both to be straight. Wait! They are straight. Or aren’t they?

The explosion of stories, which now have gone viral on multiple social media sites, causes Jakob to doubt his own reality. And, to top off the worst birthday ever, it looks like his advisor, a well-known professor who pioneered research on the slash fiction phenomena, has also seen the stories. The biggest problem is the writing style is Jakob’s, and when confronted, he finds it impossible to deny that the stories are completely untrue because of a tiny grain of truth in each. But the professor offers Jakob an exclusive research deal which would allow Jakob to go to London and confront Leo whom Jakob thinks is really behind the whole mess.

In the meantime, Leo, who truly loves Jakob but knows his love is unrequited, has no idea of the scope of the media explosion. Or so he says.  When the two finally meet and compare notes, It seems unbelievable that anyone could have possibly have had enough knowledge about them to write these stories, all of which seem to be based on true events, but with distorted facts.

While in London with Leo, Jakob gives in to his underlying sexual desires, desires that he only recently came to realize, and despite Jakob’s supposed heterosexual identity, they have sex. Unfortunately, when it’s done, instead of remaining behind with Leo, Jakob says something stupid and hurtful and then leaves after completely breaking Leo’s heart.

The story is quite brilliantly executed. The author took reality and stretched it and then twisted it, smoothed it out, and stretched it again to the point where I thought I might never be able to figure out which end was up, but she came through in the end and provided a plausible explanation for the whole mess. But did the guys really get together, or was it a dream? And do they have a HEA, or is it in the reader’s imagination?

This is an absolutely unique plot. Be sure to have fully functioning brain cells before you start to read this story because you are going to need them. I love the twist on RPS— real person slash fiction—a phenomena created by this generation. Instead of telling the story from the perspective of the fans or authors of the fiction, this story is about the characters, the real life men who are affected by the social media explosion as their love story becomes viral. The more it’s denied, the more it appears to be true. Of course, the author does throw in a few dream sequences just to keep readers on their toes. So, as I said, be sure you are fully functional before you start this one.

I highly recommend this to those who enjoy something completely different. Toss in some GFY and some first time virginal scenes, and you’ve got the recipe for a story you won’t be able to put down.

~~~~~

Cover Art by Ingela Bohm shows the silhouette of two men standing face to face against a red-lighted background. The pound sign before the title, written as # Not Safe for Work in bright yellow print, depicts the tag for which those interested in a slash fiction story would search on social media. Very cleverly done.

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

Book Details:

ebook
Published July 7th 2015 by Smashwords Edition (first published July 6th 2015)
ISBN139781311809865
edition language English

A Sammy Review: How to Train Your Dom in Five Easy Steps by Josephine Myles

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Rating: 3.75 stars out of 5
How To Train Your Dom coverEddie Powell is a painslut, quietly looking for more than just hot sex. That hasn’t worked so well with his last Doms – but when he spots Jeff White, a supposedly straight wannabe-Dom, he can’t resist a good challenge.
Jeff is newer to the scene, and between an embarrassing past experience and his lack of personal etiquette when it comes to meeting subs, he’s been struggling to find his way. He’s skeptical when Eddie approaches him and offers to train him, he isn’t gay after all. But he could use the help, and it’s just experimenting, right?
But even the most sound experiments can go awry, and no one factored chemistry or love into this equation.
“And you think you love him.”
 
“I do love him. Even if he doesn’t deserve it.”
 
“Deserving it has nothing to do with it. If you wait around for someone who truly deserves your love, you’ll be waiting forever. We’ve all got our flaws. You can be a good Dom and still have issues.”
Hm… well, my feelings toward this are a bit mixed.
I’ve stated it before, I do not actively seek out heavy BDSM practices in my books. I make an exception for this one based on the wonderful reviews it had gotten and a plot that sounded pretty yummy. And for the most part, I liked it.
I’m still a bit more on the side of vanilla when it comes to CBT (which, you know you’re in a helping profession when you originally think this means Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. The meaning in this book is quite different LOL). I could’ve taken it or left it. Plus, I have a hard time getting the image of all the contraptions combined with the rope work and such in my head, which can be a bit frustrating.
Beside that, though, I enjoyed the idea of the story. It’s something I’ve read quite a few times before. Straight boy experiments with gay boy and they fall madly in love. I thought adding the element of BDSM and a D/s relationship to this was quite interesting and gave it a whole other layer.
I also enjoy hearing a bit about the practices in general, as someone who isn’t involved in the scene, I’m always open to hearing about it and how people potentially view their roles. I got some interesting insight in this book, particularly in conversations between Eddie and Maddy. (I was a bit disturbed by the mom being called Mags though, I got them mixed up a bit and was like “wait, what?”)
I was really looking forward to the humiliation aspect of this, too. And the dirty talking. And it fell a bit flat for me in those realms – bummer 😦
Overall it was good, I just wish I had felt more connected to it.
The cover art by Lou Harper is pretty basic and in general just okay. I like the use of the basic font, but his tie looks like it’s floating and from a design standpoint, it seems like there wasn’t much that went into it. At least the guy is nice to look at.

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

Book Links:
G00dreads
Kindle Edition, 295 pages
Published September 23rd 2014 by Samhain Publishing, Ltd.
ASIN B00KT23WMW
edition language English

Charlie Cochet “Thirds” series is back With “Against The Grain”! (author interview, excerpt, & giveaway)

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One of our favorite authors is here today to talk about her latest story, Against The Grain and its inspiration! Welcome, Charlie Cochet!

My Interview with Charlie Cochet

Q . What was the inspiration behind the story?

For Against the Grain, I knew early on in the series that Ash and Cael would be getting their own book. There was just too much going on under the surface between them to not fully delve into their growing romantic relationship. From book one it’s pretty obvious to everyone (except Ash) that there’s more between him and Cael than friendship.

Q. How would you characterize your book?  Alternate universe, dystopian society, sci-fi, or all of them?

That’s a tough one since it has so many different elements. I would say the THIRDS series falls under any of these: Alternative Universe, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, Sci-fi with romance.

Q. Do you like to read the genres you write in?

I love to read the genres I write in. I read pretty much all genres of M/M Romance, though admittedly not many zombie or horror romances. There’s always exceptions, but yeah, I read all kinds of genres.   

Q. What sci-fi warrior / soldier comes to mind first when thinking about movies or novels you love?

Captain America is the first one who comes to mind. Who doesn’t love a sexy super-soldier with a heart of gold? I love his character, from the very beginning when we meet a lanky yet brave Steve Rogers who wants nothing more than to serve his country, who’s fighting for all the right reasons without fear, until after he’s transformed into super-soldier Captain America. I’m a big movie geek, and a fan of comic book movies. They’re filled with so many fantastic characters, backstories, humor and angst. Plus their worlds are just so much fun to lose yourself in.

I loved watching Sci-fi / Fantasy movies growing up. So many amazing movies at the time: Tron, Blade Runner, Star Wars, Back to the Future, Alien, Total Recall, Terminator to name a few. Then there was the fantasy like The Princess Bride, Legend, Labyrinth, Wizard of Oz, and The NeverEnding Story. They all stuck with me and I still love re-visiting all those amazing stories.

Q. What was the first book you remember that had a huge impact on you as a person and a writer, and it doesn’t have to be the same story.

I’ve read so many books over the years, I couldn’t pick just one. My library card was my most precious possession, and the day the book mobile was scheduled to come to school was the most exciting day of the week for me. As a teen, I devoured romance novels. I loved them. So it wasn’t surprising when I wrote my first romance novel in high school. I still have it. Originally it was written across several diaries then in the age of word processing and computers, I typed it all up. It underwent many, many revisions but it still sits on my hard drive, a reminder of where it all started.

Q. Characters or plot?  Which came first?

Characters. My characters always come before the plot. When I get an idea for a story and I start developing the world and what the story’s going to be about, my characters always pop up before anything else. They’re what drive the plot and the story for me. I love creating characters.

Q. What’s next for Charlie Cochet?

Quite a bit! My schedule is pretty full on right now, so there’s plenty heading this way. On Aug 19th, I have Beware of Geeks Bearing Gifts being released, which is a sweet romance novella that centers on a gruff Miami SWAT officer and his brownie-baking geeky neighbor determined to kill him with kindness and baked goods. On Aug 25th, Charmed and Dangerous: Ten Tales of Gay Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy is released. It’s a fantastic anthology with an amazing lineup of authors. My story The Soldati Prince features a smart-mouthed barista who discovers he bears the mark of a sexy yet dangerous tiger-shifter king from another realm. At the end of October we have Between the Devil and the Pacific Blue, a haunting story of a detective/security guard and the mysterious hotel guest he’s drawn to. In December we have the fifth book in the North Pole City Tales series, Loving Blitz which follows best friends Cupid and Blitzen on their adventures from friendship to romance.

For more information on my current works in progress or upcoming releases, you can find it all here: http://www.charliecochet.com/work-in-progress/

Thank you all so much for having me, and a big thank to everyone who’s stopped by!

AboutTheBook

Title: Against the Grain (Thirds # 5) by Charlie CochetAgainstTheGrainFSLG

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Cover Artist: L.C. Chase

Length: Novel, 216 pages

Release Date: August 3rd, 2015

Blurb:

As the fiercest Defense Agent at the THIRDS, Destructive Delta’s Ash Keeler is foul-mouthed and foul-tempered. But his hard-lined approach always yields results, evident by his recent infiltration of the Coalition. Thanks to Ash’s skills and the help of his team, they finally put an end to the murdering extremist group for good, though not before Ash takes a bullet to save teammate Cael Maddock. As a result, Ash’s secrets start to surface, and he can no longer ignore what’s in his heart.

Cael Maddock is no stranger to heartache. As a Recon Agent for Destructive Delta, he has successfully maneuvered through the urban jungle that is New York City, picking up his own scars along the way. Yet nothing he’s ever faced has been more of a challenge than the heart of Ash Keeler, his supposedly straight teammate. Being in love isn’t the only danger he and Ash face as wounds reopen and new secrets emerge, forcing them to question old loyalties.

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At one point, Ash felt Cael’s leg pressed up against his, and it was ridiculous how happy the tiny gesture made him. If it was even a gesture. Ash swiftly put it off to being an accident, but then a little later, Cael reached over and wiped a thumb over the corner of Ash’s mouth, telling him he had a breadcrumb.

“You should have seen him,” Dex said with a laugh. “He looked so adorable with his cheetah fuzz shaped into spikes, from his head down to his back. Like a little spotted punk rocker.”

Maddock shook his head at Dex. “It took me two hours to wash all the hair spray off your brother’s fur.”

“We were pretending to be Guns N’ Roses,” Cael explained. “Dex was singing ‘Welcome to the Jungle,’ and I was backup sing—er, chirping.”

Ash laughed and playfully bumped Cael’s shoulder. “I’m going to have to agree with Dex. That’s adorable.” Even in his Therian form, Ash thought Cael was the sweetest thing he’d ever laid eyes on. Cael could be in his Therian form among thousands of cheetahs, and Ash would be able to point him out. His little gestures, the heart shape of his nose, or the way he chirped away, as if anyone not in their Therian form might understand him if he tried hard enough.

Dex grabbed Sloane’s arm. “Tell me you recorded that. Doesn’t matter. I have witnesses.” Dex stood and motioned to all of them. “Witnesses! You all heard it. Ash said he agrees with me.”

“Oh, good Lord. We’re never going to hear the end of this,” Maddock sighed, getting up to clear the dishes.

“Do you realize how epic this moment is?” Dex said, helping clear up.

“It’s not really that epic,” Maddock replied.

Dex let out an exaggerated gasp. “Where have you been living? Ash Keeler has agreed with something I, Dexter J. Daley, has said.”

“About your brother being adorable. Not exactly earthshattering. He’s thought that since they met.”

The table fell into silence as they all gaped at Maddock. Well, this was news to Ash. What the hell? Seeming to notice the quiet, or more likely the lack of Dex talking, Maddock looked up.

“What are you, fish? Close your mouths.”

Four mouths promptly closed.

“It’s not rocket science. I’ve known that boy since he joined, and he’s threatened every agent he’s ever met with kicking their ass. Except for Cael.”

Hard to argue with that. It was the truth.

Dex frowned at Ash. “You threatened to kick Hobbs’s ass?”

Ash nodded. “Yep.” Was it his first week of being on the job? He was pretty sure it was the first week.

“Dude, that’s not cool. Hobbs is awesome.”

“He can also be a pain in the ass. Plus when we first met, I didn’t know he had selective mutism. I asked him a question, and he wouldn’t answer me. He’d whisper to Calvin, who’d answer for him. I got pissed off and told him if he didn’t tell me himself, I’d kick his ass.” Ash had never met a tiger Therian as big and insecure as Hobbs. The whole encounter had left him confused. Here was their new demolitions expert, and he couldn’t talk. How the fuck was he going to communicate with his team? Ash wasn’t proud to admit he’d had a shit fit. He understood the THIRDS was about equality and representation when it came to hiring, but he had been genuinely concerned about the safety of his team. Not long after, Ash had seen how wrong he’d been about Hobbs. Not that he’d admitted it.

Dex let out a sound of disgust. “Dude, not cool.”

“I said I didn’t know. I apologized afterward, and that’s saying something.”

Ash got up to help clear the dishes, with Dex going on about how he should really think about using some of those scented candles Rosa had gifted him. Ash proceeded to flip him off.

When Cael stood to help, Ash put a hand to his shoulder.

“Relax, I’ve got this.”

He gave Cael a wink and walked the dirty dishes to the kitchen with Dex yammering on behind him. The guy was like a fucking mosquito buzzing in your ear and trying to suck the life out of you. Ash placed the dishes in the dishwasher, giving grunts and one-word replies. He grabbed the dishes from Dex and put those in as well. He wished he could stick Dex in there. Finally someone up there decided to give him a break, and Dex left the kitchen, singing some stupid song about a lion sleeping tonight or something.

Ash frowned at Maddock. “Does he never shut up? How the hell did you live with this for so long?”

“It’s called patience,” Maddock replied. “Not exactly your forte.”

“Oh, I can be patient. That’s not what’s required when dealing with your oldest. I’d say sedative is more the word you were looking for.”

Maddock laughed. “Just get in there, Keeler.”

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AboutTheAuthor

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Charlie Cochet is an author by day and artist by night. Always quick to succumb to the whispers of her wayward muse, no star is out of reach when following her passion. From adventurous agents and sexy shifters, to society gentlemen and hardboiled detectives, there’s bound to be plenty of mischief for her heroes to find themselves in, and plenty of romance, too!

Currently residing in Central Florida, Charlie is at the beck and call of a rascally Doxiepoo bent on world domination. When she isn’t writing, she can usually be found reading, drawing, or watching movies. She runs on coffee, thrives on music, and loves to hear from readers.

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A M/M Anthology Spotlight: First Timers Anthology from Torquere Books

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First Timers Anthology from Torquere Press

Stories from Authors Rob Rosen, Gacy Grant, Evelyn Burkhardt,
Jacey Mills, Andrea Dalling, Helena Maeve, Erin McRae & Racheline Maltese,
Megan McFerren, Val Prozorova, McKay, Katherine Halle

Publisher: Torquere Press
Cover Artist: BSClay
Release Date: August 12, 2015

Sales Links:   Torquere Books

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About First Timers Anthology

First Timers brings you a collection of eleven stories about first experiences. From sweet and innocent to smoking hot, these stories capture the exhilarating feeling that something wonderful is about to happen.

Humor and passion blend in Rob Rosen’s “Come Hell or High Water,” Gacy Grant treats us to a heartwarming first in “The Pickup,” long-time friends become lovers in “The King’s Guard” by Evelyn Burkhardt and “One Sneeze, a Wish, Two Sneezes, a Kiss” by Jacey Mills, and revelations abound first time away from home in Andrea Dalling’s “What a Man Wants” and Helena Maeve’s “Initiation.” “Sample and Hold” by Erin McRae and Racheline Maltese, Megan McFerren’s “Just Like That,” and Val Prozorova’s “Guitar Lesson” explore the intensity of a first coming out, first time, first kiss, while love can be found where you least expect it in “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around” by McKay and “Finding Home” by Katherine Halle.

Whether contemporary or fantastical, past or present, a sweet kiss on a riverbank or reveling in the Bayou, these stories are all uplifting, fun, and did we mention hot?

Pages or Words: 74,000 words
Categories: Gay Fiction, M/M Romance, Romance

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Excerpt


“We’re here,” Duncan said, parking the car and stretching in the driver’s seat. He looked out the window. “Looks fairly unassuming. That’s always a good thing. They a have a menu posted outside as well.”

He got out of the car and met Brian on the sidewalk where they both looked at the menu. Duncan had barely made it past the appetizer section when the door opened and a middle-aged woman with a smile on her face stepped out.

“You must be Duncan and Brian. We’ve been expecting you. René and Lexa are already inside. Please come in, join them.” She gestured to them with her hand.

Brian and Duncan followed her through the front room toward the back of the restaurant, to an alcove with a table set for four. The shifter they had met last year stood as they approached the table and Duncan again took note of the man’s thick—although unusually short—arms.

“Afternoon, wo’ves,” he grinned, showing his teeth and extending his hand for a shake. “It’s good to be seein’ you again. Wasn’ sure you’d come.”

Duncan shook his hand, surprised at the strength of his grip.

“Neither were we,” Brian answered, reaching his own hand out tentatively.

“How’d tha’ bite heal?” René asked, gripping Brian’s hand without the same obvious squeeze he’d given Duncan. He placed his other hand gently over their joined hands and patted Brian.

Duncan watched as Brian’s face flushed before he answered.

“Um, just fine, thanks. Sorry we trespassed.”

“S’all righ’,” René said with a grin. “Sorry I bit you. I ten’ to git snappish with strangers in ma territory.”

“Understandable,” Brian said.

René finally let go of Brian’s hand. “Lemme introduce to you ma second, Lexa.”

The tall brunette who had remained seated now stood and smiled warmly at both of them. “You’ll have to forgive my brother. Sometimes he lets his animal side take precedence. I’m Lexa.” She extended her hand to both Duncan and Brian in turn. Duncan noted her strong grip, her almost fully black eyes, and the grin that appeared to be just as toothy as René’s.

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Tour Date: August 12, 2015:
Parker Williams, Havan Fellows, Wake Up Your Wild Side, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Molly Lolly, BFD Book Blog, Vampires, Werewolves, and Fairies, Oh My, Inked Rainbow Reads, Bayou Book Junkie, Redz World, Divine Magazine, Boys on the Brink Reviews, Happily Ever Chapter, Velvet Panic, Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews, MM Good Book Reviews, The Jena Wade

Giveaway

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Enter to win a Rafflecopter Prize: E-copy of the ‘First Timers’ anthology. Must be 18 years of age or older to enter. Link and prizes provided by the publisher and Pride Promotions.

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