A Jeri Review: Out in the Field by Kate McMurray

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

out-in-the-fieldIt’s no secret that I am a big, big fan of baseball books. Kate McMurray’s previous series “The Rainbow League” was awesome. And this book is right on par. Apparently released in 2012, this is a new edition.

Matt Blanco is a baseball star nearing the end of his career. He is getting old, his batting average isn’t great and he has been hiding that he was gay his entire career.

Iggy Rodriguez is the new rookie who is psyched to not only play on his favorite team, but alongside his favorite player.

The ever popular “chance encounter” in the locker room brings them close- especially when they realize the other is also gay. They begin a secret and hot romance- figuring they have the best of both worlds. Someone else to keep their secret with and someone to have regular sex with.

But real life- namely their jobs in baseball- comes knocking.

One of the many things I really appreciate about Kate McMurray is her knowledge of baseball and the intricacies surrounding it. It isn’t just playing 162 games a year. It is traveling and practices and agents and endorsements and injuries and press. So while another author could write a neat and tidy romance with two players who enjoy each other, this book brings in the nitty gritty. Seeing how they deal with all of the outside influences and their careers and what they are willing- or not willing- to sacrifice.

This was a great story- about romance, sex, the beginning of one career and the end of another. You don’t have to be a baseball fan to enjoy this book- but if you are a baseball fan you will love it.

Cover art by Aaron Anderson is a perfect baseball cover.

Sales Links: Dreamspinner Press | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 2nd Edition, 216 pages
Published May 16th 2016 by Dreamspinner Press (first published April 23rd 2012)
ISBN 1634771761 (ISBN13: 9781634771764)
Edition LanguageEnglish
settingNew York (United States)

Cover Reveal for – Blood Lines by A.L Bates (excerpt and giveaway)

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Blood Lines Cover Banner

Synopsis

Mark Thomas owns his own “New York”-themed bar on an off-world colony.

Nate Fox is an ex-con gone straight.

He’s also Mark’s best friend and brother-in-law.

Mark has feelings for Nate. Nate has feelings for Mark.

But neither man is prepared to compromise their friendship or Mark’s relationship with Danny.

Blood Lines is a story about fidelity, trust, and respect. It’s a story about honesty and learning from mistakes.

And it’s a story about second chances.

Blood Lines AL Bates Cover

Release date: June 21, 2016

Pre-order Links

Don’t miss the pre-order and release discounts on all retail sites by getting your copy up to 48 hours after release.

WIP: http://www.waywardinkpublishing.com/?p=2080
Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Blood-Lines-L-Bates-ebook/dp/B01GKKKPDU/
Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Blood-Lines-L-Bates-ebook/dp/B01GKKKPDU/
Amazon DE: https://www.amazon.de/Blood-Lines-L-Bates-ebook/dp/B01GKKKPDU/
Amazon AU: https://www.amazon.com.au/Blood-Lines-L-Bates-ebook/dp/B01GKKKPDU/
ARe: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-bloodlines-2055134-145.html

Excerpt

Men like Bailey were everywhere. Men who held themselves back because they feared how far they would actually go in life. Bailey, like his boss, was a ball of repressed anger and shame. He wanted things he didn’t want, he did things he didn’t want to do, and the darkness he buried within himself was so terrifying he avoided it whenever he could. Danny had discovered how to deal with these men; that offering their darkest fantasies without consequence was enough to push them over the edge. He’d done it with Phillip two nights ago, and he could do it again.

Danny dangled the bag, the suggestion rich in his eyes.

Bailey shook his head, but his attention never left the powder. “I’m on duty.”

Danny dared a step closer, his face getting dangerously close to Bailey’s. “I won’t tell anyone.”

“You shouldn’t be here,” he said.

“Then cuff me. Lock me up. Punish me.” Danny arched his eyebrow, seeing the interest flare in Bailey’s eyes. He pressed himself against Bailey’s larger, squarer frame. “I’ve been very bad. I need to be punished.”

Bailey licked at his thin lips, his eyes flickering between Danny’s and the drugs. Danny slipped the bag into Bailey’s hand—giving him the semblance of control. Carefully, he moved Bailey backwards, walking him towards the empty stall. One step. Two steps. And Bailey was moving on his own now; entranced, captivated. Danny moved his hands around Bailey’s solid body.

A siren rang out in the distance. Danny pulled Bailey close, slipped his hand into Bailey’s holster, grabbed his gun, and leapt free of the cubicle. Bailey’s lustful face transformed.

“Don’t move,” Danny said with a wink. He backed towards the exit, a mental countdown beginning in his head. He’d studied the quickest route out of the building. He could still make it. He blew a kiss at Bailey and fled for his life.

Book Trailer

About the author

A.L. BATES has a keen interest in Sci-fi and adventure novels and enjoys writing stories with strong characters in imaginative backgrounds. Although an avid writer, Deep is the first published novella by A.L. Bates.

A.L. Bates can be found on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authoralbates

A Free Dreamer Review: Love Can’t Conquer (Love Can’t Series #1) by Kim Fielding

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Rating: 5 stars out of 5

love-cant-conquerBullied as a child in small-town Kansas, Jeremy Cox ultimately escaped to Portland, Oregon. Now in his forties, he’s an urban park ranger who does his best to rescue runaways and other street people. His ex-boyfriend, Donny—lost to drinking and drugs six years earlier—appears on his doorstep and inadvertently drags Jeremy into danger. As if dealing with Donny’s issues doesn’t cause enough turmoil, Jeremy meets a fascinating but enigmatic man who carries more than his fair share of problems.

Qayin Hill has almost nothing but skeletons in his closet and demons in his head. A former addict who struggles with anxiety and depression, Qay doesn’t know which of his secrets to reveal to Jeremy—or how to react when Jeremy wants to save him from himself.

Despite the pasts that continue to haunt them, Jeremy and Qay find passion, friendship, and a tentative hope for the future. Now they need to decide whether love is truly a powerful thing or if, despite the old adage, love can’t conquer all.

There’s no doubt: “Love Can’t Conquer” was absolutely, utterly brilliant. I picked it up and couldn’t put it down, which led to a couple of nights with very little sleep.

In case the blurb isn’t obvious enough for you: This story is rather dark and quite angsty. It deals with past alcohol and drug abuse, past child abuse and a bit of mental illness (mostly anxiety, but also depression). There’s also talk about attempted suicide. If that’s not your thing, back away slowly. You won’t enjoy this book.

Qay isn’t easy to like. He’s really struggling with his life, but tries his damndest to stay clean and sober. That’s not always easy and he’s not always nice. The things he’s gone through didn’t make him a nice, mellow person. They made him distrustful and full of self-doubt. Still, he was a very interesting character and my heart really went out to him. Definitely not your typical romance hero and I liked that.

He doesn’t even look like your typical romance hero: He’s skinny, he’s got scars and he’s pale. But I believed Jeremy when he said he found Qay beautiful.

Jeremy has had a less troubled life. He did have his struggles, sure, but life dealt him a better hand than it did Qay. I loved him just as much as I did Qay. Both of them had real depth and had a unique voice that I enjoyed reading.

There was also an interesting collection of side characters, each with their own depth and a potentially interesting history. I can definitely see the potential for a sequel there.

The two of them were very different and yet it felt like they were made for each other. I immediately felt the attraction between the two of them and it was easy to believe their feelings.

I loved the way Kim Fielding handled the sex. The MCs didn’t just tumble into bed, overcome by lust, without any thought or discussion, the way it so often happens in these books. Instead, both MCs made a deliberate decision to wait and really made their first time together a special occasion. They took time to savour each other and I felt like the sex really added something to their relationship.

Aside from the romance, there was also an element of mystery regarding Jeremy’s ex. Some minor parts of that were a little bit predictable, but the overall solution was definitely not expected.

Qay and Jeremy had to really work for their HEA. There was a lot of stuff for them to overcome and they had to really fight for it. I often dislike endings, but here it seemed to fit perfectly.

The way Qay’s struggle with his addiction was portrayed was very realistic. It didn’t just all go away magically because of love. He had to work to stay clean and sober every day. Some days that was harder and some days that was easier. But the struggle never just disappeared.

The whole book had a rather bleak feel to it, with a dash of hope. Kim Fielding did an amazing job portraying both MCs’ doubts and insecurities and made it easy to get caught up in the story for hours on end, without realizing how much time had passed.

If you don’t mind dark and angsty, and want your MCs to really work for their well deserved HEA together, read this book. It’s right up there with the best books I’ve read this year.

It’s the first in a new series by Kim Fielding and I’m already looking forward to the next books.

Cover: The cover by Brooke Albrecht shows a lone figure standing in the middle of a bridge. It looks a little sad and forlorn and fits the mood of the book perfectly.

Sales Links:   Dreamspinner Press | ARe | Amazon

Book details:

ebook, 260 pages
Published June 3rd 2016 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN 1634773217 (ISBN13: 9781634773218)
Edition LanguageEnglish

Series:
Love Can’t

1. Love Can’t Conquer

A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: All the Wrong Places (Bluewater Bay #14) by Ann Gallagher

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Rating: 5 stars out of 5

All The Wrong PlacesBrennan Cross can’t get past his girlfriend’s parting remarks. He caught her cheating with another guy and she blamed him. Him—because he failed to meet her sexual needs. And what’s worse is that she’s the third girlfriend in a row who had the same problem. He decides he needs professional help, so he goes where he expects to find someone who knows about sex—the Bluewater Bay sex store—Red Hot Bluewater. There he meets Zafir, a young Lebanese man, with long, dark hair pulled back into a ponytail, and an obvious desire to be helpful. After some conversation, Zafir poses the idea that Brennan might not be a bad lover; he might be asexual like Zafir.

After Zafir explains, Brennan finds himself more confused than ever and sets out to learn as much as he can about being asexual. Even though there’s an abundance of information, and misinformation, on the web, he finds that Zafir might indeed be right.

The two become friends, and Zafir allows himself to hope that there might be a place in Brennan’s heart for a Muslim single father with only a GED and no hope of a future career. Zafir took custody of his infant son when he was seventeen years old, and so far, the nine-year-old boy seems happy and well-adjusted. Zafir protects Tariq as much as he can, but he can’t protect him from a broken heart if this closeness he feels with Brennan falls through because Brennan has slowly become a part of Tariq’s life as well.

The biggest issue is Brennan’s doubt about his sexuality, especially when he realizes he loves Zafir but has no sexual desire for him. Advice from his ex-girlfriend seems to spin him around, and he’s headed for a collision with a broken heart and a broken relationship if he can’t come to accept Zafir’s love for him.

I loved this story. It was sweet and romantic, very informative, fun, humorous, heartwarming, and heartbreaking. When I find myself taking time between chapters to go back to savor the goodness of what has gone before, I know I have a winner in my hands, and that definitely happened here. The storytelling is superb, the pace perfect, and the romance just the thing to make my romantic heart swoon. I can’t recommend this one highly enough.

~~~~~~~

Cover art by LC Chase depicts the two MCs: Brennan with his constant companion—a skateboard—and Zafir gazing off into the distance overlooking Bluewater Bay. This book is a part of the Bluewater Bay series but most certainly can be read as a standalone.

Sales Links:  Riptide  |  Amazon

Book Details:

ebook
Published June 13th 2016 by Riptide (first published June 12th 2016)
Original TitleAll the Wrong Places
ISBN 1626494193 (ISBN13: 9781626494190)
Edition LanguageEnglish

Series:Bluewater Bay

In the Spotlight: All the Wrong Places (Bluewater Bay #14) by Ann Gallagher (giveaway)

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All The Wrong Places

All the Wrong Places (Bluewater Bay #14) by Ann Gallagher
R
iptide Publishing
Cover Art by L.C. Chase

Read an Excerpt/Buy It Here

Welcome to the Riptide Publishing/Ann Gallagher blog tour for All the Wrong Places, the latest installment in the Bluewater Bay series!

Blurb

Three cheating girlfriends in a row have given skateboarder Brennan Cross the same excuse: he wasn’t meeting their needs. Desperate and humiliated, he goes to the professionals at the local sex shop for advice.

Zafir Hamady, a sales clerk at Red Hot Bluewater, has an unusual theory: he doesn’t think Brennan is a bad lover. In fact, he doesn’t think Brennan is heterosexual. Or sexual at all, for that matter. He also can’t stop thinking about Brennan. But even if he’s right and Brennan really is asexual, that doesn’t mean Zafir has a chance. Brennan’s never dated a man, and Zafir’s never met anyone who’s game for a Muslim single father with a smart mouth and a GED.

Brennan’s always thought of himself as straight. But when sex is explicitly out of the mix, he finds himself drawn to Zafir for the qualities and interests they share. And Zafir can’t help enjoying Brennan’s company and the growing bond between Brennan and his son. They work well together, but with so many issues between them, doubts creep in, and Brennan’s struggle with his identity could push away the one person he didn’t know he could love.

 

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Giveaway Info


Every comment on this blog tour enters you in a drawing for a choice of two eBooks off my backlist

(excluding All The Wrong Places, but including books written as L.A. Witt or Lauren Gallagher) and a $10
Riptide Publishing store credit. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on June 20 th , and winners will be
announced on June 21 st . Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries.  Be sure to leave your email address where you can be reached.  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.

Author Bio

 

Ann Gallagher is the slightly more civilized alter ego of L.A. Witt, Lauren Gallagher, and Lori A. Witt. So she tells herself, anyway. When she isn’t wreaking havoc on Spain with her husband and trusty two-headed Brahma bull, she writes romances just like her wilder counterparts, but without all the heat. She is also far too mature to get involved in the petty battle between L.A. and Lauren, but she’s seriously going to get even with Lori for a certain incident that shall not be discussed publicly.

Connect with Ann:

Website: http://loriawitt.com
Author Blog: http://gallagherwitt.blogspot.com
Personal Blog: http://navywifeadventures.blogspot.
Twitter: @GallagherWitt
Facebook: http://facebook.com//L-A-Witt-MM-Fiction

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Bluewater Bay

Welcome to Bluewater Bay! This quiet little logging town on Washington state’s Olympic Peninsula has been stagnating for decades, on the verge of ghost town status. Until a television crew moves in to film Wolf’s Landing, a soon-to-be cult hit based on the wildly successful shifter novels penned by local author Hunter Easton.

Wolf’s Landing’s success spawns everything from merchandise to movie talks, and Bluewater Bay explodes into a mecca for fans and tourists alike. The locals still aren’t quite sure what to make of all this—the town is rejuvenated, but at what cost? And the Hollywood-based production crew is out of their element in this small, mossy seaside locale. Needless to say, sparks fly.

This collaborative story world is brought to you by eleven award-winning, best-selling LGBTQ romance authors: L.A. Witt, L.B. Gregg, Z.A. Maxfield, Aleksandr Voinov, Heidi Belleau, Rachel Haimowitz, Anne Tenino, Amy Lane, SE Jakes, G.B. Gordon, and Jaime Samms. Each contemporary novel stands alone, but all are built around the town and the people of Bluewater Bay and the Wolf’s Landing media empire.