J.P. Barnaby On My Most Beautiful Boy, Inspiration and ‘Anthony’ by JP Barnaby (Tour and Giveaway)

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AnthonyFS

Anthony by JP Barnaby
Publisher:  Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: AngstyG

Release Date: June 27, 2016
Goodreads Link

Purchase Links:  Dreamspinner Press | Amazon US  | ARe 

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is lucky to have J.P. Barnaby here today to share the inspiration behind the cover and story of her release, Anthony.  Welcome, J.P.

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My Most Beautiful Boy by J.P. Barnaby

Sometimes, I have to ponder the existence of intelligent design, or fate, or karma—nothing else explains me becoming friends with a young man named Cody. Just shy of his 21st birthday, we met at Pride in Atlanta—a city neither of us lived in. At the time, I was still living in Chicago and Cody was attending college in Birmingham—but as fate would have it, he met a mutual friend and ended up in our little group. We fed him mimosas at Joe’s and steered him away from trouble.

Now, anyone who isn’t a supermodel knows the adage—that really hot people know they’re hot and don’t let you forget it. Cody, one of the most beautiful kids I’ve ever seen, not only defied that law, but shattered it. Kind, thoughtful, and funny, Cody surprised me with his unpretentious nature. We exchanged numbers and became very close over the intervening years.

The one thing I did tell him that weekend was that I wanted him to model for me. He readily agreed. Little did we know it would take four years and a professional modeling career for that to happen. I knew as I wrote Anthony that this was the book for Cody—this was the character that matched not only his image, but his spirit. So, when I saw the image that eventually became the cover image, we reached out to the photographer and explained. He licensed the image to me, excited by the project.

AngstyG, my cover artist, went to work creating the four cover in a series of masterpieces that only she could create. There are other good cover artists that work for Dreamspinner, but Sam is my Goddess. She does all of my covers – from Aaron to In the Absence of Monster to A Heart for Robbie. Each one is unique and truly exceptional—Anthony is no exception. The original photograph was taken in a wooden area, but because Anthony is a runaway, she put him against the alley wall. It’s a striking image.

I am incredibly lucky not only with my friends, but with my models, and my artist.

They are truly extraordinary people.

Pairing: M/M

Length: Novel Length

Genre/Tags: Contemporary, Gay Fiction, Hurt/Comfort

Anthony Promo1

Book Blurb

A Survivor Story

Aaron Downing worshiped his mother. She saved his life. She did everything for him. But Anthony Downing has a different perspective. He sees the woman who tossed him into a basement for eight long years and forgot he existed. When Anthony decides he’s done being invisible, he packs up and heads for Detroit to stay with his Internet friend Jay, but fate intervenes.

Brendan Mears lost everything the day the man with a gun came into his father’s store. Now, he’s tethered to a business he can’t manage and a brother who resents him.

Different in all the ways that matter, Anthony and Brendan struggle to overcome their psychological obstacles, until a crushing betrayal sends them running for cover and each other.

Excerpt

A faint chill clung to his skin, and he caught the soft scent of burning as he bent to pick up his vodka. Someone must have been using a fire pit in the quiet of a Saturday night in suburbia. Anthony liked the smell. It reminded him of the backyard barbecues they’d thrown when his family was whole. Before Aaron proved Copernicus wrong and became the center of the fucking universe.

Before Anthony became the invisible boy.

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Author Bio

JP Barnaby, an award-winning gay romance novelist, is the author of over two dozen books, including Aaron and the Little Boy Lost Series. She recently moved from Chicago to Atlanta to appease her Camaro who didn’t like the blustery winters. JP specializes in recovery romance, but slips in a few erotic or comedic stories to spice things up. When she’s not hanging out with hot guys in leather, she binge watches superheroes and crime dramas on Netflix. A physics geek, she likes the science side of Sci-Fi, and wants to grow up to be Reed Richards.

Want to keep up with JP’s latest releases?

Follow her on Amazon, Facebook, Twitter, or on her Website.

Anthony Promo Image 1

A Free Dreamer Review: Dark Blood by Caleb James

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Dark BloodHandsome, brilliant, and surrounded by good friends, twenty-three-year-old medical student Miles Fox has a secret—and it’s not that he’s gay. Though he harbors a crush on his straight best friend, Luke. Miles, like his grandmother, Anna, possesses the healing gift, an ability she’s made him swear never to use or divulge, lest horrible things befall those he loves. It happened to her when Nazis butchered her family.

But it all goes to hell when Miles heals a terminally ill man on a New Orleans cancer ward and wakes locked in the psych unit. Worse, news of the healing miracle spreads. For millennia, its carriers have been hunted by those who would steal it. Dr. Gerald Stangl and his teenage son, Calvin, know what Miles possesses. They, like their predecessors, will stop at nothing to take it, including kidnapping, torture, and murder. As the Stangls’ noose tightens, Miles and Luke are trapped in a death match with stakes higher than they could ever imagine.

The first sentence of the blurb pretty much made up my mind that I had to read this book. While there’s nothing wrong with a closeted MC, I tend to find stories that solely revolve around coming rather boring a lot of the time. And Miles really doesn’t make a secret of being gay. His love interest, however, is so very deep in the closet he won’t even really admit to himself that he might just be attracted to his very male best friend. While the romance definitely isn’t the driving factor to this story, I still couldn’t help but be a little disappointed by that.

“Dark Blood” does get rather gory. There was talk of vivisection, heads in jars and other atrocities like infecting somebody with a deadly virus on purpose and watching them die. It was a little too gory for me, to be honest. I really didn’t need quite such vivid descriptions.

I quite enjoyed the general idea of the story. Miles has a secret healing power that runs in his family. But his (damn scary) grandmother made him swear that he’d never use it and never, ever reveal it to anybody. Her reasons go back to WW2 and what she witnessed in a concentration camp. That’s where the gore really started.

There’s tons of action and I was most definitely never bored. Everything about Miles’ gift is a big mystery and the unravelling is intriguing.

“Dark Blood” features a set of truly unique characters.

Miles’ grandmother was an awesome secondary character. She’s a kickass woman, who doesn’t hesitate to drive halfway across the country to rescue her grandson. She’s fiercely protective of Miles, even if her methods are a bit questionable at times. I really liked her.

Then there’s the psychopathic Doctor Stangl and his very creepy son. Dr. Stangl was definitely the villain of the story. But his son was a different matter. Yes, he did commit some pretty bad crimes, but he did also show regret and only committed those crimes because he was terrified of his father. He was intriguing.

That brings me to the one thing I genuinely didn’t like about this book: the “villains”. They were Nazis. I hate it when a book set in modern times has Nazi villains. I don’t like reading about WW2 and I definitely don’t want to have Nazis and concentration camps and all the horrors dumped in my lap in the middle of a supernatural story set in the year 2015. And those horrors were described in vivid detail.

It always makes me doubt the author’s creativity. Nazis are such obvious villains. Nobody will question their evilness. Maybe Dr. Stangl wasn’t strictly a Nazi, but he definitely sympathized with them. And to me, he read like one anyway.

I’m not saying there shouldn’t be any stories with Nazis in them or about WW2, I’m only saying that I, personally, don’t like to read them and that I’d like a warning, if it’s not obvious from the period the book is set in.

Overall, though, I did enjoy the book. It was intriguing and full of action, with quite a few surprises. If it weren’t for the gory parts and the Nazi villains, this book could have been truly brilliant.

If you can stomach the gore, I’d recommend this book to any fan of supernatural m/m. Just don’t expect an epic romance. This is a DSP title, so the romance is not the most important part of the story.

I’m not entirely sure if I will read the sequel when it comes out. The ending did make me curious, but I’m worried there’ll be even more gore and Nazi conspiracies. I guess it all depends on the blurb.

Cover: The cover by Alan M. Clark shows Miles surrounded by heads in jars. It’s kind of gross, but really fits the story.

Sales Links:  DSP Publications | Amazon

Book details:

ebook, 294 pages
Expected publication: June 28th 2016 by DSP Publications
ISBN139781634768405
Edition LanguageEnglish

A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: They Called Him Nightmare (2016 Daily Dose – A Walk on the Wild Side) by Deja Black

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

they-called-him-nightmareFrom the 2016 Daily Dose package – A Walk on the Wild Side

This short story is my first from this author, and I was pleasantly surprised by the story. It opens with high school student Alec assessing all the others in his class for who will taste the best. A young vampire, he has the ability to put people in thrall, so they have no idea he has had sex with them and drunk their blood. But when the young man nicknamed Nightmare is around, Alec loses his ability to think straight. He’s attracted to the boy whose real name is Kai, and when he reaches out and touches him, sparks literally fly. Both recoil from the shock, but Alec wants more and Kai, wanting nothing to do with Alec, disappears shortly after the encounter.

Flash forward ten years and Alec has finally found the location where Kai has been hiding from him all this time. Excited to finally set out to meet the man he feels attracted to, he has no idea that Kai’s mother, or at least the woman he calls mother, is dying of cancer but wants nothing more than to see her boy settled before she goes so is willing to help him get his man.

There’s much more, including some very good character development, considering the brevity of the story, and there’s a surprise in store for readers who are wondering what type of being Kai might be. Let’s just say he’s the last of his kind. When the two men come together this time, they ignite in passion and finally fulfill their destiny.

I really like this story as I said at the beginning of this review. It had all the ingredients of a longer story, including a unique otherworldly perspective, and I’m looking forward to more from this author in the future.

Catt Ford is the cover artist for this series and this particular cover shows a figure in the center of a clearing lit by bright blue light and surrounded by wild animals in a darker shadowed border. It’s very appealing.

Sales Links:   Dreamspinner Press | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 26 pages
Published June 1st 2016 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN 1634775023 (ISBN13: 9781634775021)
Edition LanguageEnglish

Series2016 Daily Dose – A Walk on the Wild Side
CharactersKai Bennu, Alec Vasilios settingSouth Carolina (United States)

A Lila Review: Elemental Love (Warlocks #1) by L.M. Somerton

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Rating: 3.25 stars out of 5

Elemental LoveAn untrained warlock is a dangerous man to love.

On his twenty-first birthday, Evrain Brookes discovers he is an elemental warlock. The spell suppressing his talent lifts and he has to get used to a whole new existence. The protection that kept him safe during his childhood is gone, his skills are wild and uncontrolled and there are those that seek to use him for their own gain.

Evrain’s grandmother is a witch, his godfather another warlock. Between them they do their best to keep Evrain on the right path. He learns that in order to gain control of his formidable powers he will need to ‘channel’ through a life partner, a process that only happens with consent and through love. But how will he ever find a man prepared to put up with a Dominant warlock for a boyfriend?

Dominic Castine has no idea that Evrain’s grandmother sees him as a prospective partner for Evrain. He tends her garden and she teaches him about herbs–a trade off they both enjoy. He is drawn to Evrain’s charismatic presence but doesn’t understand why he wants to drop to his knees and submit to him.

When Agatha is murdered, Evrain and Dominic are thrown together as she manipulates them from beyond the grave. Dominic becomes the pawn in a terrifying game between warlocks whose powers he barely comprehends.

In the end, lives will depend on his courage, his willingness to grant Evrain control and the power of love.

Elemental Love is a complex story with several plot lines fighting to be the focal point. The prologue is a nice addition, but unnecessary since the events in it are discussed in its entirety later on. The beginning of the story, on the other hand, did an excellent job establishing Evrain’s personality and his relationship with his family, especially his grandmother and his godfather.

The mystery, the romance, and the elemental abilities are the main topics in the story, but instead of working cohesively, they clashed, resting relevance from each other. Perhaps and extended version would have taken care of all the small bits trying to be solved at the same time.

Personally, I wanted more time for Evrain and Dominic to be together, in-page. I like Evrain most of the time, but when he was with Dominic, the D/s relationship made him looked like a different character. Almost as if he flipped a switched every time Dominic was involved. The BDSM elements took away from their day-to-day life. Maybe we needed to see more of Evrain growing into his powers before he had to use them to defeat his opponent.

One thing I definitely enjoyed was the characterization of everyone involved. Every character in the story had a purpose and was multi-dimensional. Even characters that were only present for a small amount of time, like Evrain parents, made an impression. All the settings, smells, and foods were crafted to play a role and add to the plot. The secondary relationships were also important and interesting. Gregory and Coryn were my favorite pair.

Overall, an interesting start to the series. I’m looking forward to knowing more about this world in the next installment.

The cover goes perfectly with the story. It has several elements showed in different scenes and depicted Dominic well.

Sale Links: Pride | Amazon | ARe

Book Details:

ebook, 165 pages
Published: March 29, 2016, by Pride Publishing
ISBN: 9781786513953
Edition Language: English

Series: Warlocks
Book #1: Elemental Love

In the Spotlight: They Called Him Nightmare (2016 Daily Dose – A Walk on the Wild Side) by Deja Black

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They Called Him Nightmare (2016 Daily Dose – A Walk on the Wild Side)

by Deja Black

RELEASE DATE:   June 1st, 2016              

AUTHOR(s): Deja Black

PUBLISHING: Dreamspinner Press

LENGTH: 29 pages

CATEGORY/TAG: M/M Paranormal Romance

HEAT LEVEL: 3/5 flames

Buy Links: Amazon  | Dreamspinner Press

BLURB:

Growing up, Kai Bennu was taunted for skin dark as midnight and his otherworldly appearance. They called him Nightmare, but Alec Vasilios, a wealthy and powerful businessman, wants to call Kai his own. Kai’s past has left him with little trust in others and even more reluctance to surrender himself to Alec’s power. With both men harboring supernatural secrets, finding common ground won’t come without sacrifice.

EXCERPT:

They never asked him his name. They ran from his shadow. He was alone. Always alone. He was Nightmare.

To me he was everything I wanted. To me, he was beautiful. I needed to run my fingers along his skin, to cherish him. In the heat of the blazing sun, I wanted to taste his sweat. I wanted him beneath me, a part of me, a part of my soul. He didn’t frighten me. He entranced me. He called to me.

AUTHOR INFORMATION

Author Bio:

Deja Black had fantasies of men loving men, men who felt strongly, loved hard, and needed a hero. Then one great day she came across a book and discovered the world of m/m writing, encountered others who shared her obsession as much as she did, and found a world where she could not only be accepted for the lives and loves she envisioned, but she could create them too. So why not? Why not take the stories she would write and throw away as a teenager, grow them, dream them, and make them a reality where she could know her own characters, let them live their story, and make them real for someone else? And she did. Now, with the support of her hubby and some intense time management, she is learning to balance her family of two energetic children and a very needy shitzu at home along with the many students she teaches each and every day with her passion of writing what she loves to read.

LINKS:

Cover Reveal of The Orchard of Flesh By Christian Baines

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The Orchard of Flesh

The Orchard of Flesh

The Orchard of Flesh By Christian Baines
B
old Strokes Books

Release Date  August 1, 2016

Pre-order/Read An Excerpt Here


Reylan’s last assignment for The Arcadia Trust brought a rebellious human servant under his roof, and a volatile werewolf lover named Jorgas into his bed, leaving the self-reliant Blood Shade—known to the outside world as vampires—in no hurry to risk his immortality for them again.

But when a new terror starts disappearing humans from a bad part of town, Reylan must do everything in his power to keep Sydney’s supernatural factions from the brink of war. Having an ambitious, meddlesome human in the mix is only going to make things worse…especially when that human is Jorgas’s father.
Reylan will need all his determination and cunning to keep the peace under his roof, between the night’s power brokers, and in his lover’s troubled heart.

Genres Paranormal & Urban Fantasy

Words   85000

Pages   264

ISBN-13  978-1-62639-650-0

About the Author

Christian Baines

Christian Baines was born in Toowoomba, Australia. He has since lived in Brisbane, Sydney, and Toronto, earning an MA in creative writing at University of Technology, Sydney along the way. His musings on travel, theater, and gay life have appeared in numerous publications in both Australia and Canada.

Dual passions for travel and mythology (both of which he attributes to growing up in Australia’s bible belt) have sent him chasing some of the world’s most feared monsters, including vampires in New Orleans, asuras in Bangkok, and theater critics in New York. His first novel, The Beast Without, was released in 2013, followed by his erotic short story, “The Prince and the Practitioner.”

Puppet Boy is his second novel.

This is a continuation of the story that started with The Beast Without
by Christian Baines* A Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Highly Rated Novel.

A Free Dreamer Review: King of the Storm (The Godhead Epoch #1) by B.A. Brock

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5


king-of-the-stormNo one can outrun destiny or the gods.

In Epiro, a kingdom in Greece, Perseus is prophesied to be a great demigod hero and king, with a legacy that will shape the world of Gaia. When he was born, his grandfather exiled him, and his mother brought them to Seriphos, where she created an academy for demigod youth. Perseus trains there and waits for the day when he will be able to take the throne of Argos.

Despite potential future glory, Perseus’s fellow students think he is weak. By the time he reaches manhood, he has given up the hope of having any real friends, until Antolios, a son of Apollo, takes an unexpected interest in him. Perseus and Antolios fall in love, but Antolios knows it cannot last and leaves Seriphos.

Perseus, grief-stricken and lonely, rebels against the Fates, thinking he can avoid the prophecy and live his own life. But when the gods find him, he is thrust into an epic adventure. With his divine powers, he fights gorgons and sea serpents, and battles against his darker nature. Perseus strives to be his own man… but the gods have other plans.

First and foremost, I should probably address reader expectations. “King of the Storm” is not a M/M Romance with Fantasy. This is primarily a retelling of the Ancient Greek legend about Perseus, who happens to be pansexual in this book. So he has sex with both men and women, though the m/f sex scenes are not explicit. He also has relationships with both genders. I liked the variety of that, but it’s probably not to everybody’s tastes.

Fantasy about gods and demigods set in Ancient Greece is not something I’ve read before, so I was thrilled to discover “King of the Storm”. I’m not all that familiar with the original legend, so I can’t make comparisons. I did definitely enjoy this version.

The setting was well developed and felt realistic. There was no info-dump and yet it was easy to get a feel for the world.

A whole host of legendary creatures and people show up over the course of the book. The author came up with lots and lots of minor characters and gave each of them their own bit of personality.

The plot was full of blood and fighting, but also love and friendship. It was a great mix. Occasionally, the time jumps were a bit confusing, though. We meet Percy as an 18-year-old young man and part ways with him as a grandfather, so the time jumps did make sense. But sometimes I just felt that the years that had passed needed more of a recap.

I had a bit of a hard time forming a emotional connection that went beyond mere suspense. Percy is a bit hard to like and everything felt a bit impersonal.

Long story short, “King of the Storm” is great fantasy with lots of sex and a bit of romance. Ancient Greece is a nice change to the normal medieval fantasy settings.

If you like the legends of Ancient and don’t mind a very promiscuous MC, then you should give this book a try. I’m sure you’ll enjoy it.

This part one of a new series by a new author and I’m excited about it. Definitely going to read part 2.

Cover: The cover by Paul Richmond shows a naked Percy in waist-high water, with a thunderstorm brewing all around him. While the cover model doesn’t really fit my imagination of Percy, it does fit the story.

Sales Links:  DSP Publications | Amazon

Book details:

Kindle Edition, 321 pages
Published November 24th 2015 by DSP Publications
ASINB016R8B2QE
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesThe Godhead Epoch #1

 

A VVivacious Review: A More Perfect Union Anthology by B.G. Thomas , J. Scott Coatsworth , Jamie Fessenden, Michael Murphy

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A More Perfect Union
 
Rating: 4.5 Stars out of 5
 
a-more-perfect-unionThis is a collection of four stories that explore the real life implication of the Supreme Court’s ruling on June 26; 2015. In the future no one will ever have to live with the indignation of not being allowed to marry the one they love. In the coming years gay and lesbian relationships will be different because of the possibility of marriage.
 
But what about those who shied from the thought of marriage because they thought they would never be allowed to or those who fought every step of the way so that there would come a day when their marriages to the ones they loved would be legally and lawfully recognized by all. This anthology explores some such stories.
 
Flames by J. Scott Coatsworth – 2 Stars out of 5
Alex and Gio have been together for years but the night that Gio plans to propose, they get in a fight and Alex leaves the house only to later find out that Gio is in a coma. As Alex waits for Gio to open his eyes, he looks back on their life together and regrets the fact that they didn’t get married when they had the chance…
 
This story has good bones but it isn’t very engaging. A lot of the times the story read like an itinerary of events devoid of the emotions that the main characters must surely have experienced during said events.
 
This story is written from the perspectives of both characters but Gio’s character is not very well fleshed out and this is most definitely because of the fact that he doesn’t know who he is for most of the story. While the unique circumstances of Gio’s coma fascinated me they failed to establish Gio’s character and since Alex’s character is very well established the fact that Gio’s character is not creates an inherent imbalance in the story.
 
This story has an interesting premise but it failed to get me invested in the characters mostly because of the fact that the core of this story is mostly hollow of emotions which considering the subject is surprising.
 
Jeordi and Tom by Michael Murphy – 3 Stars out of 5
Jeordi and Tom have to fight for their love every day in the face of Jeordi’s family’s disparage. When Jeordi’s parents try to keep Tom away from Jeordi while he is admitted in the hospital, Jeordi realises that he needs to do something such that no one can ever keep Tom away from him.
 
I liked this story, it had much more of a fight in it. Jeordi and Tom are two youngsters in love while everyone around them is against their relationship.
 
This story has multiple plot lines which are threaded together with a really nice theme of passing on the love.
 
Destined by Jamie Fessenden – 5 Stars out of 5
This is the story of Jay and Wallace. It chronicles their journey from the time they first met till the time they get married.
 
This was an awesome story. I loved the introduction and premise of the story.
 
I really loved Jay and Wallace. Jay is a really vibrant guy and really easy to like but I really loved Wallace. Wallace is a quiet guy, not known to emotional outbursts and appears to be kind of detached from their relationship but the author presents him in such a light that you know that while Wallace may appear detached his heart is very much in the relationship. Despite Wallace’s shy exterior looking at him from Jay’s eyes made sure that we got a good look into the person inside.
 
Jay and Wallace felt very real and I loved their story and how they ended up together. Moreover I loved all the domestic things they did together like shopping, trying to figure out how to live together, buying a house and learning to live together with a particularly over enthusiastic dog.
 
Their marriage was a dream and I loved the destiny angle in their story. I wonder if they ever figured out that they had met years before their first meeting.
 
On the whole I loved the story, it was beyond awesome.
 
Someday by B. G. Thomas – 5 Stars out of 5   
Lucas and Dalton have known each other since they were kids and while life has sent hurdles their way they have always managed to come out on the other side stronger. But Dalton refuses to marry Lucas till marriage equality becomes a reality everywhere in the United States.
 
This one was so beautiful. I loved Dalton and Lucas and their love which was amazing. This was one couple whose story I didn’t want to see end.
 
It was a perfect story about love and marriage and how this particular one came to be. This story also highlights how things have changed in the last 25 years or so… in 1990 no one would have thought that marriage equality would have been a thing of the past come 2016.
 
This anthology has been one awesome read with some amazing stories.
 
Cover Art by Reese Dante. I loved the cover. It is a perfect representation of what this anthology is all about, two men professing their love by vowing to belong to each other forever.
Sales Links:   Dreamspinner Press | ARe | Amazon
Book Details:
ebook, 350 pages
Published June 26th 2016 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN 1634773322 (ISBN13: 9781634773324)
Edition LanguageEnglish
URLhttp://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=7854

A Stella Review: Practice Makes Perfect (Housemates #3) by Jay Northcote

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Rating:  4 out of 5 stars

Practice Makes PerfectGetting experience with the guy next door seems like a great idea—until the lines blur.

Dev, a geeky first year physics student, has zero sexual experience and he’s determined to change that ASAP. After a bad time in halls of residence, he’s starting the summer term with different housemates and a new plan of action.

Ewan lives in the house next door to Dev. He’s young, free and single, and isn’t looking to change that anytime soon. When awkward circumstances throw them together, Ewan offers to help Dev out in the bedroom in return for maths tutoring, and Dev jumps at the chance.

They work their way through Dev’s sex-to-do list, but what starts as a perfect no-strings arrangement gets more complicated as their feelings for each other begin to grow. If they’re going to turn their lessons in lovemaking into something more permanent, they need to work out how they feel about each other—before they get to the end of Dev’s list.

 

Practice Makes Perfect is a very sweet and cute story and of course it is a winner to me. First of all because I fell in love with the main characters, Dev, with his innocent dirty talks, and ginger Scottish Ewan were hard to resist.

If you are thinking the blurb is really nothing new, you are right. The agreement between Dev and Ewan is a trope maybe over explored in romance, but I assure you Jay Northcote can write and make a plot interesting and never boring, even if it could have been easily developed into something trite.

Moreover in a story with a plot like this, often the sex scenes overwhelm the rest of the story, turning it into what we call PWP (Porn Without Plot). It’s not the case of Jay’s book, no worries. Yes, there are quite some sex scenes, very hot, cause you know, Dev has made a list, he needs to learn everything and then check off items. Still I found myself looking forward to the other scenes, where Ewan teaches Dev how to cook, or the times spent with their housemates, or the moments when they are making googly eyes at each other.

I always recommend to read series in order, I admit I haven’t read Helping Hand (Housemates #1) and Like a Lover (Housemates #2), but this third installment works perfectly as a standalone. I met the two couples of the previous books, but they were simple second characters and there wasn’t a time I felt I was missing or I should have known something.

At the end Practice Makes Perfect was a pleasure to read. I feel to recommend it.

The cover art by Garrett Leigh doesn’t conquer me but it’s well done and fitting.

Sales Links:  Amazon UK | Amazon 

BOOK DETAILS

Kindle Edition, 168 pages
Published June 22nd 2016 by Jaybird Press
ASINB01H7V027A
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesHousemates #3

In the Spotlight: Practice Makes Perfect by Jay Northcote (excerpt)

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Book Information
Title: Practice Makes Perfect
Series: Housemates book #3
Author: Jay Northcote
Publisher: Jaybird Press (self published)
Length: 54,000 words
Genre: Contemporary gay romance
Cover Artist: Garrett Leigh
Release Date: Wednesday 22nd June 2016

Getting experience with the guy next door seems like a great ideauntil the lines blur.

Dev, a geeky first year physics student, has zero sexual experience and he’s determined to change that ASAP. After a bad time in halls of residence, he’s starting the summer term with different housemates and a new plan of action.

Ewan lives in the house next door to Dev. He’s young, free and single, and isn’t looking to change that anytime soon. When awkward circumstances throw them together, Ewan offers to help Dev out in the bedroom in return for maths tutoring, and Dev jumps at the chance.

They work their way through Dev’s sex-to-do list, but what starts as a perfect no-strings arrangement gets more complicated as their feelings for each other begin to grow. If they’re going to turn their lessons in lovemaking into something more permanent, they need to work out how they feel about each other—before they get to the end of Dev’s list.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30234682-practicemakesperfect
****

Excerpt

Sitting on his bed, Dev yawned, his full stomach making him sleepy. He stared at his phone as he contemplated calling home but decided he couldn’t face it tonight. He loved his mum, but she did tend to bang on. Once she got him on the line, she’d end up talking for ages and asking him a million questions he was too tired to answer. Instead, he sent his mum a quick text.

All moved in, everything’s good. I’m shattered now so I’m going to have an early night. I’ll call you tomorrow.

She replied within seconds as though she’d been waiting for him to call.

Okay sweetie, glad you’re settled. Sleep well xxx

He picked up his notepad and crossed off phone home. Texting counted. He also crossed off everything else on his list for today. That was Saturday done.

Dev set his notepad aside, opened his laptop, and pulled up his lists app. He liked his notepad for day-to-day organisation; it gave him a certain satisfaction to cross out the things he’d done and to get to the end of the day with all the tasks completed. But for longer-term planning, he kept his lists on his Mac, synced to his phone.

For the first time in six months, Dev could breathe again. Finally he had a safe place where he could get back on track and look to the future. He began to type.

Things To Do This Term

Make some friends

Learn to cook

Research sex stuff

Join Grindr

Get some experience

Find a boyfriend

He stared at the words on the screen and sighed. That seemed like a lot of things to aim for. But it was good to have goals, right? Jez and Mac seemed really nice, so hopefully Dev was already on his way to achieving the first objective. And that bloke Ewan… Dev’s mind conjured up the image of the flame-haired hunk who lived next door. Ewan had been friendly.

Maybe there was potential there too.

Buy Links

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01H7V027A
https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01H7V027A
Universal Amazon link (will open in your region) http://mybook.to/PMP_JayN

NB: Practice Makes Perfect will be Amazon exclusive for 90 days after release, and will then be available at all the usual sellers.

Author Bio:

Jay lives just outside Bristol in the West of England, with her husband, two children, and two cats.

She comes from a family of writers, but she always used to believe that the gene for fiction writing had passed her by. She spent years only ever writing emails, articles, or website content. One day, she decided to try and write a short story–just to see if she could–and found it rather addictive. She hasn’t stopped writing since.