A Stella Review: Coffee Boy by Austin Chant

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RATING 4 out of 5 stars

coffee-boy-by-austin-chantAfter graduation, Kieran expected to go straight into a career of flipping burgers—only to be offered the internship of his dreams at a political campaign. But the pressure of being an out trans man in the workplace quickly sucks the joy out of things, as does Seth, the humorless campaign strategist who watches his every move.
Soon, the only upside to the job is that Seth has a painful crush on their painfully straight boss, and Kieran has a front row seat to the drama. But when Seth proves to be as respectful and supportive as he is prickly, Kieran develops an awkward crush of his own—one which Seth is far too prim and proper to ever reciprocate.

Coffee Boy is my first book by Austin Chant and I can’t wait to read more by this new to me author. I quite enjoyed his writing style.

The story is about Kieran, who just landed on an internship for a political campaign. He’s nervous but his ex-professor, who offered him the job, guaranteed a trans friendly workplace. Sadly the first impression isn’t great with employers that don’t bother to look at the pronoun pin Kieran wears. Luckily beside him there’s Seth. Seth who is hot but cold, still he’s the only one to understand which pronoun use with Kieran. Seth who is also crushing on their straight boss, Matthew. We follow Kieran through the internship and his day job flipping hamburger, throughout his struggles with people who can’t do right to him.

I liked Coffee Boy a lot. I liked the plot and the characters, even the secondary ones, like Jillian, Kieran best friend, the one who leaves everything just to go to his house and talk about a bad day. I loved how the relationship between Kieran and Seth develops and the deep care Seth has for Kieran, the attention he pretends other people show to him. And I adored Kieran and his smart mouth. The writing flew easily and made the story engaging and never boring. I liked the second part more where both of the MCs start understand the possible begin of something important among them. And the ending was great, real, sweet and funny. Four deserved full stars. Give it a try!

The cover art by Natasha Snow is very cute and fits perfectly the book. Well done.

Sales Links

NineStar Press

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BOOK DETAILS

Word count 27600

Publication Date October 31st 2016 by NineStar Press

ISBN 9781945952074

Edition Language English

A Caryn Review: Faded into You (Intoxication #2) by Remmy Duchene

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Rating: 1.5 out of 5 stars

faded-into-you-by-remmy-ducheneWhen I was in high school in the early 1980s, I read harlequin romances obsessively.  At the time, they were exactly what my immature self wanted – quick reads where the guy gets the girl with little angst, and the girl would then devote the rest of her life to making her man happy.  Which also meant becoming dependent upon said man for her happiness and well being as well, financial and emotional.

And you know what?  The world isn’t like that any more.  By the time I was a year into college, I quit thinking that I needed a man to define me, or to make my life worthwhile.  And I quit reading cheesy romances, because they offended me with their misogyny.  Why was it always the woman who needed rescuing?  And I continued to stay away from romances until I discovered M/M romance a few years ago, and I could read about people falling in love without that built-in power differential between men and women that bothered me so much.  If a man needed rescuing, it was not simply because of gender, but because of circumstances, or choices, and when they got together, they were equals.

That’s how a relationship should be.

OK, that’s my soapbox, and what I expect from this genre.  So when I read a book that follows that old harlequin formula, just substituting the woman with a man, it pisses me off.  And that’s what this book did.  Ravi is supposed to be an ambitious and successful marketing professional, who chooses to take a job in India in order to further his career and to see the world.  But really, he is just sad and jealous that his best friend is getting married and he’s not, and since his life really has no meaning without a man, he runs away, to India.  Thaddeus is supposed to be a cyber security guru with a checkered past who goes to India to do a job that will further his career as well.  But he takes on the role of uber-alpha male who will “fix” everything that is wrong with Ravi’s life with his magic penis.  Ravi acts irrationally, hating Thaddeus on sight for no apparent reason, but going along with everything he wants because, well, he is powerless in the face of Thaddeus’ take charge masculinity.  There was that annoying “I hate you, but I want you, and I really have no self respect so go ahead and ravish me, and that will make me fall in love with you”.  And of course, Ravi is always the bottom, because he is the weak “woman” in this pairing.  Physically smaller and weaker, younger, less successful, and needing his alpha male to “complete” him.

So enough feminist ranting.  Yes, I know that I have read and enjoyed other books with alpha males, and I’m not sure what set me off so much with this one, but I would have DNFed it about a third of the way through if I hadn’t committed to writing a review.  On top of that, the writing wasn’t even all that good.  There was an awful lot of filler and no substance.  I do not need to read about Thaddeus putting on his boots, then noticing the snow and tucking his pants in, wondering where his scarf went, then getting in the car, closing the door, turning on the defroster…….  And I don’t want to know that he takes a piss every morning before he brushes his teeth.  Who the hell cares and wants to read about that?

I hoped to read and learn about India, but all I got out of this book was that it’s hot, and people are poor there.  Oh, until Ravi and “Thaddy” (shoot me) save their Indian driver who is gay and driven out of his homophobic father’s home, and then his sister is also driven out because she still loves her brother.  Both of them would have obviously become homeless prostitutes without the great Americans to save them.  So even though one MC is Indian and the other is black, I still found this book racist.

I could go on.  I made notes of things I didn’t like, but the list is so long and I don’t want to spend any more time writing about it.  Oh, and I have no idea what the title meant or how it related to the story, and why the subtitle “Fighting Love is Futile” is even there.  Was someone expecting the Borg??

Cover art by Posh Gosh was extremely generic, though the Indian man was good looking.  It would have been nice to have a photograph from India instead of the random sunset, which said nothing about the book.

Sales Links

Pride Publishing

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Book Details:

ebook
Expected publication: November 1st 2016 by Pride Publishing
ISBN139781786514837
Edition LanguageEnglish

A Lila Audiobook Review: Running Wild by SE Jakes and Narrated by Dorian Bane

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Rating: 3 stars out of 5

runningwild_audiobookSean Rush is an adrenaline junkie. That’s why he was in the Army, why he steals and races classic muscle cars… and why he can’t stay away from bad boy Ryker, a Havoc Motorcycle Club lieutenant. Fortunately, Ryker can’t seem to stay away from Sean—he’s spent the last eight months breaking into Sean’s apartment and stealing into his bed, leaving Sean physically satisfied but increasingly restless.

Sean has always avoided relationships. He likes to come and go without being controlled. And Ryker is possibly the most controlling man he’s ever known. Still, he finds that he wants more from Ryker than their silent nighttime encounters.

Then one of Sean’s thefts goes bad, and Ryker’s protective instincts kick into overdrive. He takes Sean to the Havoc compound, determined to keep him safe. But Sean’s past threatens the safety of Havoc—and everything Ryker holds dear. Worse, Ryker’s hiding secrets of his own. Soon it’s obvious that the adrenaline rush can’t keep them together anymore. But maybe love can.

Running Wild is another good book by this author. It isn’t as detailed as others in her series, but it’s interesting enough to carry a new series. The concept was good, but the delivery fell short. It became predictable and cliché at parts.

I love Ryker, but Sean needed to grow up. Their relationship started strong, but then it turned more into an MF motorcycle book. Some of the scenes and the way Sean acted were easy to gender swap. I wanted Ryker and Sean to actually sit down and talk. Not pretend they were listening to each other, and not putting the club before their relationship.

One of my favorite parts was during the MCs’ separation. Perhaps because we saw another side of Sean—a more mature man trying to put his life back together and taking control. For me, the friendship between the rival motorcycle club president and Ryker stole the show. I wanted to know more about them. Maybe with Sean in the mix.

Overall, an entertaining story with likable enough characters. It lacks the emotional connection from other books from this author, but it’s a good one to start a somehow related story.

Narrator: The narration was pleasant but not remarkable. Dorian Bane did a good job getting the characters’ voices to differentiate from each other. For some reason, I couldn’t stop thinking about MSNBC reporter Craig Melvin. I felt as if he was narrating the story, and I didn’t mind. 🙂

The cover for the audiobook is an adaptation of the e-book version created by L.C. Chase. It’s interesting, and let the reader see the road from the rider’s perspective.

Sales Links:  Riptide | iTunes | Audible

Audiobook Details:

Narrator: Dorian Bane
Length: 7 hours and 15 minutes

Published:  September 26, 2016 (Audio Edition) by Riptide Publishing
ASIN: B01LXXFCMM
Edition Language: English

Series: Havoc

Book #1: Running Wild

 

Alisa Release Day Review: Spell Cat (The Aloysius Tales #1) by Tara Lain

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Rating:  4.5 stars out of 5

 

96c54-spellcat400x600When Killian Barth, history professor, meets Blaine Genneau, quantum physicist, they ignite their own big bang. But Killian can’t pursue a physics professor—or a human. As the most powerful male witch in ten generations, Killian must bolster his dying race by reproducing—despite the fact that he’s gay.

 

Even a fling with Blaine is out of the question, because Killian has been told sex with humans drains his power. But if that’s true, why can young human Jimmy Janx dissolve spoons with the power of his mind? If Killian can sort through the lies he’s been fed, he’ll still face his biggest obstacle—convincing rational scientist Blaine to believe in magic.

 

With his ancient and powerful cat familiar, Aloysius, on his shoulder, Killian brings the lightning against deceit and greed to save Blaine from danger and prove love is the greatest power of them all.

 

I have wanted to read this story for awhile now, but kept putting it off.  When I saw it was being re-published I jumped at the chance to read it and I loved it as much as I thought I would.  Killian has resigned himself to a life of duty to save his race, but knows he will never be happy with a woman.

 

Killian is drawn to Blaine from the first time they meet, but tries to deny it.  Blaine gets confused with Killian’s hot and cold actions, but isn’t easily deterred.  With everything going on around them it seems they may not have to stay apart forever.

 

In this story I could feel how frustrated and desperate Killian felt about his situation.  The more he learns about Jimmy the more confused he becomes about what he has been taught about witches and humans.  Killian becomes so desperate for a real connection with someone he gives in to his feeling for Blaine, but the result isn’t what he thinks will happen.  Jimmy is connected to Killian much more than just student and teacher and seeing the struggles of Jimmy and other characters in this story helps understanding the setting a bit more.  I enjoyed all of the characters and can’t wait to see them in more stories in this series.

 

Cover art by Reese Dante is wonderful and gives us a great visual of Killian.

 

Sales Links: Dreamspinner Press | Amazon | ARe

 

Book Details:

ebook, 200 pages

Published: 2nd Edition, October 31, 2016 by Dreamspinner Press

ISBN-13: 9781634776745

Edition Language: English

Series: The Aloysius Tale

In the Spotlight: The Queer and the Restless (Queers of La Vista #3) by Kris Ripper (giveaway)

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The Queer and the Restless (Queers of La Vista #3) by Kris Ripper
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iptide Publishing
Cover art by L.C. Chase
Read an Excerpt/Buy It Here

Hi, I’m Kris and welcome to the blog tour for The Queer and the Restless, book three in my awesome queer soap opera! Enjoy the blog tour!

About The Queer and the Restless

Ed Masiello has been on testosterone for a year, is working his dream job as a reporter, and is finally passing as a man (so long as you don’t ask his abuela). But the investigation of a murder case is starting to take over his life. Afraid he’s becoming obsessed, he goes to the local club to relax, and meets the flighty, whimsical Alisha.

Alisha is a free spirit who’s tossed aside ambition for travel and adventure. Her approach to life is a far cry from Ed’s, and while Ed has always assumed that meeting his goals would make him happy, Alisha is much more content than him—despite all the plans she can’t yet fulfill.

As their relationship heats up, so does the murder case. Alisha thinks Ed needs a break, but someone’s got to find this killer, and he wants to be there when it all goes down. Besides, taking off into the great unknown with Alisha is crazy. But opting for what’s safe is just another way of living in fear, and Ed vowed to stop living like that a long time ago.

The Queer and the Restless is available from Riptide Publishing. http://riptidepublishing.com/titles/the-queer-and-the-restless

About Kris Ripper

Kris Ripper lives in the great state of California and hails from the San Francisco Bay Area. Kris shares a converted garage with a toddler, can do two pull-ups in a row, and can write backwards. (No, really.) Kris is genderqueer and prefers the z-based pronouns because they’re freaking sweet. Ze has been writing fiction since ze learned how to write, and boring zir stuffed animals with stories long before that.

Connect with Kris:

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Giveaway

To celebrate the release of The Queer and the Restless, one lucky winner will receive an ebook from Kris’s backlist! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on November 5, 2016. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!

A Paul Review: The Wolves of Daos 5 by Rebecca James

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Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

the-wolves-of-daos-5-by-rebecca-james“As difficult as it was to wrap his mind around, Michael couldn’t deny that it all felt like the truth.  He was half-alien, living in an alien civilization, mated to an alien, had an alien inside of him, and evidently other aliens were trying to kill them.  In other words, his life was now a bad sci-fi movie”

Luckily for us readers, The Wolves of Daos 5 is a well-crafted science fiction novel.  Let’s start with the main characters.  Michael has believed he was human all his life.  His mother died in childbirth.  His father left when he was six.  He was raised by his maternal grandmother according to his mother’s wishes.  Through his life, he has suffered from social anxiety.  At his grandmother’s insistence, Michael goes to college but lives outside the city in a cabin in the woods so he does not have to deal with the other students in a dorm. 

Quinn is an alpha werewolf out on a run with a couple of his betas.  He smells what he knows is his mate on the wind.  He goes to investigate.  He sees a young man trying to repair a roof in a driving rain storm.  He howls at his mate, who is startled and falls off the roof.  Quinn goes to check on the man and bring him in the cabin.  When the man wakes up, Quinn tells him that not only is Michael his mate, but also an omega werewolf.  Michael disbelieves the story he has been told as a symptom of a concussion.  That is until Quinn morphs into his wolf.  Michael asks for time to process this and Quinn agrees.  Thus begins Michael’s journey into what he terms a bad sci-fi movie. 

I found Michael charming as he navigates into this alien world into which he is brought into by Quinn.  As with anyone new to a society, he makes occasional social faux pas.  The whole checking out another man’s crotch as a way of greeting just puzzles Michael.  Michael is also introduced to Ezzy, another omega who must be somehow related to Lucy Ricardo.  The schemes that he drags Michael into makes him comment that he shouldn’t be his Ethel.  Author Rebecca James builds an interesting world where Daos 5 is actually superimposed on Earth’s reality through magic.  One of the more interesting beings in the book is that of the doctor that is taking care of Michael.  People who are averse to slimy things will know where Michael’s apprehension with the doctor comes from.  This is an excellent start to what I hope will be a long series of books.

The cover by Brandyjo Newton is gorgeous.  It fits the book well.

Sales Links

Rebecca James | Amazon | Smashwords | ARe

Book Details

EBook, 195 pages

Edition Language:  English

Published:  September 24, 2016 by Rebecca James

ASIN:  B01M0WFAUV

Here’s Reading You ~ An Author’s POV (Part IV) and This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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Here’s Reading You ~ An Author’s POV (Part IV)

Today, we are going to finish up our authors perspective on writing and publishing eBooks with two authors familiar to readers here at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words.  Elin Gregory, author of wonderful M/M historical novels and Joe Cosentino, author of the Cozzi Cove and Nicky and Noah Mysteries among others.  They kindly consented to answering our questions about writing, writing eBooks and publishing.

Reflecting back,  while many authors see the eBook format as one that’s here to stay, other points of view vary widely.  Here are two more to add to our picture of the eBook as it matures into an established book format and method of getting one’s  story heard and out to readers world wide.  

Elin Gregory

✍From Elin Gregory, author of On a Lee ShoreA Taste Of Copper, and many more:

  • As an author, what has your experience been publishing ebooks?  Especially self published ebooks?  Did you start off that way?  Was a traditional publishing house not the answer?  Or if it was, why? 

I’ve been writing fiction for as long as I can remember but very much took on board the message that proper books were written by ‘posh folk’. Impressions that you form as a child can be very difficult to shake off as an adult so, although I wrote many novels, it was always as a cheap form of amusement rather than with any intent. In my thirties I did show a friend what I had written. She was a deeply thoughtful and serious reader and a rollicking Regency romance with a bisexual hero really wasn’t her thing. Her reaction was so negative that I went back into the writing closet. It wasn’t until the rise of the internet and online writing fora that I tried sharing things again, to a much better response, and a friend who was a published author encouraged me to try ebooks. This was in the early 2000s before ebooks were widely available and I didn’t follow it up at the time. I wish I had.

  • How has the ebook industry changed since you started publishing?  How do you view these changes?

It hasn’t actually changed that much other than fewer publishers, more opportunities to self publish and OMG huge numbers of authors. The consequence of this is that I think it’s getting harder to be published by one of the ebook houses – which isn’t bad. As a reader I appreciate feeling that publishers are striving for excellence. But as an author, whether with a little house or as a self pubber, it’s very hard to be ‘seen’ when there are hundreds of new books each month.

  • Have you as an author benefited, are indifferent, or has it made your job more difficult to get your books out there?

I’ve benefitted in that I don’t believe I’d have ever been picked up by an agent. The competition is FIERCE. So ebooks have given me a terrific opportunity to share my work. The difficulty is in writing books that don’t properly fit the main categories so never really being sure how to describe them. Tagging them M/M won’t work because M/M is, in many readers’ minds, synonymous with erotic romance.  They aren’t really romance, lacking that focus on the relationship. I can’t describe them as gay fiction because that, to me, specifically refers to books written by gay authors. I can’t call them LGBT+ fiction because they mostly only cover the G. Tagging is really important in order to allow readers to find you.

  • What things would you change if you were starting over?

I wish I had been braver and had submitted the short novel I finished in 2005. It might have sunk without a trace but people might have liked it. Who knows?

If I was starting now – probably not much. I don’t think I have the steely core of self esteem you need to be a successful self publisher/self promoter. When ones natural style is to say  “Oh by the way, there’s this book I wrote … no, forget it. You probably wouldn’t like it” you’re not going to sell much.

  • What has been your biggest challenge?  And biggest victory as an author – other than publishing that is? Is it see your genre  expand?

Biggest challenge – LOL marketing! Biggest victory – ummmm, not sure. I’ve had a few lovely reviews and when you’ve been doing something for well over 50 years and someone thanks you for it, oh, how the heart lifts!

But expanding the genre is happening and it’s FANTASTIC. I can buy books that are genre first now – sci fi, thriller, historical, kitchen sink drama and all the rest – with amazing, complex characters and deeply interwoven plots. Books to really sink my teeth into by authors I just want to cheer, authors I aspire to emulate! More choice has to be a good thing.

  • Where do you see ebooks and yourself in the future?

I think we will carry on a pleasant low key association, like the type of friend you might not see for a couple of years but the relationship picks up where you left off. I would like to publish a bit more frequently but one does what one can and if nobody wants it – well markets change. No point worrying about it until it happens. I’ll be writing anyway.

Joe Cosentino

✍From Joe Cosentino, author of the Nicky and Noah Mysteries, the Cozzi Cove series, The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland, and many more

  •     From being touted as the death of the printed format to the savior of reading to everything in between.  As an author, what has your experience been publishing ebooks?  Especially self-published ebooks?  Did you start off that way?  Was a traditional publishing house not the answer?  Or if it was, why?

 

As an actor and playwright, I did the happy dance on my desk when Dreamspinner Press agreed to publish my novella adaptation of my one-act play, AN INFATUATION, loosely based on my high school years and high school reunion. That inspired me to write another novella, A SHOOTING STAR, loosely based on my years as a theatre major in college. The staff at Dreamspinner Press was amazing. I received a main editor, four assistant editors, a cover artist, and a publicity manager. The head of the company, Elizabeth North, answered my emails quickly, cordially, and completely. We even shared a hilarious late-night email exchange about my funny Italian family. The two novellas started out as e-books. They did so well that Dreamspinner Press gave me my own paperback anthology of the two novellas, which just recently won a Rainbow Award Honorable Mention. We are now planning an audiobook for those. We are also planning audiobooks for my other two novellas: THE NAKED PRINCE AND OTHER TALES FROM FAIRYLAND (my gay take on my favorite fairytales like Cinderella, Pinocchio, Jack and the Beanstalk, Goldie Locks and the Three Bears, and The Snow Queen) and A HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS (my romantic novella set on the gorgeous and magical island of Capri, Italy), both being performed by the amazing and versatile actor Joel Leslie and releasing in November and December respectively. In addition to the things I have already mentioned, the benefit of having a publisher is the assurance that your books are getting out into the market, and that you are part of a family of authors who support you. I’ve met so many generous authors who have given me advice, featured me on their blogs, and read my books. The advantage of publishing an e-book is the lower price and easy availability, though some readers prefer the paperback and/or audiobook. I assume the e-books are less expensive to publish, though print on demand has greatly reduced the cost and need for bookstore returns for publishers of paperbacks.

 

  •   How has the ebook industry changed since you started publishing?  How do you view these changes? Have you as an author benefited, are indifferent, or has it made your job more difficult to get your books out there?

 

Though I have eleven published novels and four more written and being released over the next several months, I’ve only been writing novels for two years. As my mother says, “Don’t you have anything better to do than write novels?” Hm. I wonder if Stephen King’s mother asked him that. In any case, during the short time I’ve been writing, the only change I’ve seen is the increased number of readers in all venues. Some swear by ebooks. Others want to hold the paperbook in their hands. And the rest want to hear the book performed by a skilled narrator while they exercise, drive, or rest. The more formats available for a book, the easier it is to promote.

 

  •  What things would you change if you were starting over?

 

I wouldn’t worry so much about whether or not my books would be published. I’ve been lucky enough to find the right publisher for each of my series. For example, Lethe Press publishes my comedy mystery series, the Nicky and Noah mystery novels, loosely based on my life as a college theatre professor (though thankfully nobody has been murdered at my college). DRAMA QUEEN (Divine Magazine’s Readers’ Poll winner of Favorite LGBT Mystery, Humorous, and Contemporary Novel of 2015) is available as an ebook, paperback, and audiobook performed by the amazing Michael Gilboe. DRAMA MUSCLE (Rainbow Award Honorable Mention) is available as an ebook and paperback. An audiobook is in the works. DRAMA CRUISE releases in ebook and paperback on December 1. Steve Berman of Lethe Press sees the value in offering his customers ebooks, paperbacks, and audiobooks. He also enjoys humor and a good mystery with a surprise ending.

 

  •  What has been your biggest challenge?  And biggest victory as an author – other than publishing that is? Is it to see your genre expand?

 

My biggest challenge has been working as a college professor/department head while I write and help promote so many books. My biggest victory is receiving so many wonderful messages from readers who tell me my books made them laugh, cry, feel romantic, and see their lives differently. For example, I created the Jana Lane mystery novels with straight leading characters and gay supporting characters, and found many straight people loving the gay characters as their favorites, and claiming that thanks to those books their positions changed on equality. The series about an ex-child star making a comeback while she solves murder mysteries on sets is published by The Wild Rose Press in ebooks and paperbacks: PAPER DOLL, PORCELAIN DOLL, SATIN DOLL, CHINA DOLL, and RAG DOLL which releases on November 13. Since the series takes place in the 1980’s, the beginnings of AIDS is featured in the novels, and also Jana’s best friend and agent are gay and partnered. The series attracts a different readership to my other novels. I am delighted to expand in that way. I also love shocking the readers each time with the surprise endings.

 

  •  Where do you see ebooks and yourself in the future?

 

I think ebooks are here to stay. However, I also believe paperbacks and audiobooks aren’t going anywhere, as I’ve witnessed many readers who continue to prefer them. As for me. I spent part of the summer writing teleplays of some of my books. I think they would all make terrific television series, especially my Cozzi Cove series published by NineStar Press as ebooks and paperbacks: COZZI COVE: BOUNCING BACK, (Divine Magazine Honorable Mention and TBR Pile Book of the Month), COZZI COVE: MOVING FORWARD, and COZZI COVE: STEPPING OUT which releases in January. The stories of ex-football player Cal Cozzi and his guest bungalows in a gay resort on a gorgeous cove on the New Jersey Shore is ripe for television. Hear that producers. Make me an offer!

 

Looking back over all our wonderful authors interviews, I begin to see certain similarities stand out.  All expect the eBook format to continue, as well as all forms of printed formats and audiobooks.  Most wish they had been braver, started to write or publish sooner. Wish they had listened more to their own voices instead of perhaps someone else telling them that what they were writing wasn’t what would sell or that the public wanted to read.

Its been wonderful to have all these authors opinions for the last two weeks.  My thanks to Parker Williams (Of Love and Corn Dogs), Wulf Francu Godgluck (Tooth, Claw, and Horn Chronicles), and Jay Northcote (Housemates, Nothing Serious ), Elin Gregory, and Joe Cosentino for appearing in this series.  Your participation has been invaluable.

Have you learned something from our authors?  Still have a question or two to ask?  We have a giveaway for our readers below.  Leave a comment or question to be entered.

And Happy Halloween and Samhain everyone!

We will be  switching things up for November as we start to roll into the holiday seasons.  We will get back to our publishers at a later date.  Thanksgiving is coming here in the States.  Hmmm…what will be our topic next? Only a wild turkey might tell….

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Giveaway

Elin Gregory is giving away a eBook copy (pdf format) of her M/M historical novel, A Taste of Copper, as well as our own giveaway of $10 of Dreamspinner gift certificates to 4 lucky readers.  To win, leave a comment and an email address where you can be reached on how reading eBooks has impacted you.  Could be the amount of books you buy, what type of books, where you buy them.  Anything.  Winners will get to choose their prize, first come first served.  Contest ends November 8th at midnight.  Must be 18 years of age or older.

 

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This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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Sunday, October 30:

  • Here’s Reading You ~ An Author’s POV (Part IV)
  • This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
  • A Paul Review: The Wolves of Daos 5 by Rebecca James

Monday, October 31 (Happy Halloween – Happy Samhain):

  • In the Spotlight: The Queer and the Restless by Kris Ripper (Riptide  Publishing Tour/Giveaway)
  • Alisa Release Day Review: Spell Cat (The Aloysius Tales #1) by Tara Lain
  • A Caryn Review: Faded Into You by Remmy Duchene
  • A Lila Audiobook Review  Running Wild by SE Jakes and Narrated by Dorian Bane
  • A Stella Review: Coffee Boy by Austin Chant

Tuesday, November 1:

  • Quinn Anderson on the Challenges of Writing and her latest release, Hotline (Riptide tour/giveaway)
  • Release Blitz & Review Tour – Romancing The Wrong Twin – Clare London
  • A MelanieM Review: Romancing The Wrong Twin by Clare London
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Pansies by Alexis Hall
  • An Alisa Review: Crashing Waves by CJ Baty

Wednesday, November 2:

  • L. Rockwood Talks Dark Fantasy and “Defiant Revival” (Author Guest Blog/Book Release)
  • Tara’s “Spell Cat” Book Blast and Review (linked to the post)
  • A Melanie Releases Day Review: After the Sunset (Timing #2) by Mary Calmes
  • A Paul Review: Julio’s Wolf (Werewolves of Manhattan #6) by A.C. Katt
  • Alisa Release Day Review: Private Dances by BA Tortuga

Thursday, November 3:

  • Summer Season from Series Recap Tour – Treading The Boards Series – Rebecca Cohen
  • In the Spotlight:  Posy Roberts on her latest release Stroke of Luck (author guest post, excerpt )
  • A Melanie Release Day Review: Summer Season by Rebecca Cohen
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Audiobook Review: Love on Location by Lucy Felthouse and Joel Leslie (Narrator)
  • A Lila Audiobook Review: The Senator’s Secret by K.C. Wells and John Solo (Narrator)
  • An Alisa Audiobook Review: Lights, Camera, Cupid, the Bluewater Bay Anthology

Friday, November 4:

  • Cover Reveal  for Nobody’s Home by Dev Bentham
  • Honeymoon Their Way by Morticia Knight Blog Tour and Giveaway
  • Black Snow by EAB (Dreamspinner Author Guest Post)
  • A Lila Review: Twice in a Lifetime by Shawn Lane
  • A Stella Release Day Review: Mapping the Forest by Brandon Witt

Saturday, November 5:

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~About This Sunday’s Contributing Authors~

About Elin Gregory:

Taste of copper 400x600Elin Gregory lives in South Wales and has been making stuff up since 1958. Writing has always had to take second place to work and family but now the kids are grown up it’s possible she might finish one of the many novels on her hard drive and actually DO something useful with it.

Historical subjects predominate. She has written about ancient Greek sculptors, 18th century seafarers but also about modern men who change shape at will and how echoes of the past can be heard in the present. Heroes tend to be hard as nails but capable of tenderness when circumstances allow.

There are always new works on the go and she is currently editing a novel about spies in the 1920s, finishing one set in 6th century AD England and contemplating one about the Second World War. Any excuse to buy more books!

You can reach  Elin at:

About Joe Cosentino:joe-cosentino

Bestselling author Joe Cosentino won Divine Magazine’s awards for best mystery novel, best humorous novel, and best contemporary novel of 2015.

Amazon Bestselling author Joe Cosentino’s books were voted Favorite LGBT Mystery Novel, Favorite LGBT Humorous Novel, Favorite LGBT Contemporary Novel, and Second Favorite LGBT Romance Novel in Divine Magazine’s Readers’ Poll. Many of his books have won Rainbow Award Honorable Mentions, and one was voted TBR Pile Book of the Month. Joe wrote In My Heart: An Infatuation, A Shooting Star, A Home for the Holidays, and the Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland (Dreamspinner Press); Drama Queen, Drama Muscle,  and Drama Cruise Nicky and Noah mysteries (Lethe Press); Paper Doll, Porcelain Doll, Satin Doll, China Doll, and Rag Doll Jana Lane mysteries (The Wild Rose Press); andCozzi Cove: Bouncing Back, Cozzi Cove: Moving Forward, and Cozzi Cove: Stepping  Out Cozzi Cove beach novels. He has appeared in principal acting roles in film, television, and theatre, opposite stars such as Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Holland Taylor, Charles Keating, and Jason Robards. Joe is currently Head of the Department/Professor at a college in upstate New York, and is happily married. Joe was voted 2nd Place for Best LGBT Author of the Year in Divine Magazine’s Readers’ Choice Awards for 2015. http://www.JoeCosentino.weebly.com

A MelanieM Review: Shield of the Dragon (Dance with the Devil #6) by Megan Derr

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Ratings: 4.5 stars out of 5

shield-of-the-dragonIf the aftermath of destroying two powerful syndicates and joining league with the last person he expected, all Ken wants is a chance to catch his breath, and maybe regain the attention of the man who said he wanted Ken as more than just a Steward but now seems to have lost interest. But every other day bring a new crop of people wanting to kill them, and it’s only a matter of time before they succeed.

All Amr wants is time—time to move his clan and settle them into their new home, time with the dragon he never thought he’d own, and most of all he wants time for his Steward, to see the man rest and recover and stop getting himself almost killed every week. He wouldn’t mind a chance to rekindle their fragile relationship either.

Diamond wants a life that feels worth living. The one he left behind wasn’t all that great, but it beat waking up to the nasty results of a curse that should have killed him and working as a hitman for the Cambry Syndicate. Then he goes to fetch someone for his boss, and gets dragged even deeper into the strange paranormal world he’s still learning to call home.

Note: contains poly

Another story in one of Megan Derr’s Dance with the Devil series is always cause for rejoicing.  Its a huge universe of stories she’s built, full of worlds and characters and their mates.  They are intertwined of course, sometimes loosely, or sometimes the threads that hold them together are tight, knotty, a balled up mess of relationships and politics and genetics.  Dragon genetics.  But whatever the story, its always compelling. The plots and world building so weirdly captivating and the couples a mesmerizing blend of beings that sometimes has you blinking in disbelief and delight at the same time.

Some of the couples even bleed (literally) into each others novels, as they do here.  For those who are loving followers of the series…I won’t spoil the surprise, just be prepared to see a couple from a previous novel play a major role here.  It also sent me running to read their story all over again.   Truly, this is a series that keeps on giving from one story to the next. It keeps reigniting your interest in all the past novels you’ve already read as well as launching your imagination anew for the next book to come.

I haven’t even gotten to Shield of the Dragon (Dance with the Devil #6) yet.  If you haven’t read the other stories that included the Dragons and the Dragon shifters in the Dance with the Devils series, you can still read this novel.  Derr does a wonderful job of explaining the culture, the genetic history just enough to engage a new reader’s imagination and connect them immediately to the story.  Those of us who have been with the series all along,  well, its a lovely quick refresher course.  But as always, its the characters who pull us into the drama and the plot lines here.

As with any Derr story there are layered story threads running parallel to each other, intertwining throughout the novel.  One is the tale of Amr who is moving his clan during a time of upheaval. Amr has been claimed by a dragon that’s the key to power and therefore much sought after.  His own life is in just as much turmoil as he seeks the companionship of Ken, his Steward.  Ken, a person of action instead of words is confused by the one person he wants and now thinks has rejected him.  And still their  clan must be settled into hostile territory and their dragons kept safe.  Little do they know of the plans being hatched against them.

Diamond is an unusual hitman/thug for the Cambry Syndicate.  Who and what he is makes him all the more deadly to everyone around him..and it brings him no peace.  His latest mission is about to change everything.  For himself, for the Syndicate, for all he knows.  In Diamond, Derr has created another memorable character.  A cursed being, done in by his own brother, with more of his history waiting to be revealed later in the plot, the revelations that flow from this character’s plot thread are extraordinary.  From his lover to those that he meets, Diamond is the key of the Shield of the Dragon in so many ways.  Derr has layered him in such a way that its a delight to watch him grow and change, especially  when one event occurs.

Ken is probably as close as they come to being Diamond’s twin.  And when the plot works in tandem, their threads twisting together, the book explodes with power.

One thing that should be mentioned is that the dragons are able to shift into human form, while remaining dragons in thought.  Part of the bonding process is sex and it continues to be part of their relationship.  So there is sex, not only between couples but between their dragons and the couples, as neither can be excluded from the others relationship, naturally.  This includes female dragons too.  So don’t be surprised to have a M/M/M/M/F/M…I think I left a M out of there somewhere… pairing at the end.  But it all felt very natural  given the relationships between each other and the couples.  Really with the dragons, its all about who they choose.

By the time the novel comes  to its HFN conclusion I was so deep into this world once more that I was shocked to see it was time to leave again.  Hate it when that happens.  Derr always does  it to me.  I’m never ready.  And of course, seeing that other couple again made me ready to pull out their story for round 2.

I loved this story.  If you are a fan of Megan Derr, you probably have already grabbed this up.  You don’t need my recommendation.  But for everyone else, if you love fantasy, dragons, dragon shifters, outstanding world building and all of the above, here’s a series to sink your teeth into.  Very sharp teeth!  And a book you will love.  You can start here or go back to the beginning.  I have listed them all at the bottom of the review.  I’ll be waiting for the next to arrive.  Meet me here.

Cover art is dark and is hard to make out but helps brand the series.

Sales Links

Less Than Three Press

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Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 197 pages
Published September 12th 2016
ASINB01LZG7V02
Edition LanguageEnglish
Series Dance with the Devil – add to your Goodreads shelf:

Dance with the Devil (Dance with the Devil, #1)
The Glass Coffin (Dance with the Dev #2
Dance in the Dark (Dance with the Devil, #3)
Midnight (Dance with the Devil, #3)
Dance Only for Me (Dance with the Devil, #4)
Risk it All (Dance with the Devil #4.5)
Sword of the King (Dance with the Devil, #5)
Shield of the Dragon (Dance with the Devil #6)
Twilight (Dance with the Devil #7)

A MelanieM Review: Too Many Cases by Julia Rancourt

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Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5

too-many-casesJo is a man of multiple worlds. He was born in the mundane world, but while working as a private detective, he inadvertently chased his quarry into Otheropolis, a parallel world filled with magic. Deciding to stay, Jo is joined by Simone Of Hecate, his partner in more ways than one, and resumes his private detective work in his strange new home.

But when his private life in the mundane world comes under assault, on top of three new cases, and multiple attempts on his life, Jo starts to wonder if maybe mundane was better than magical after all.

Too Many Cases was a neat little story by Julia Rancourt.  Full of a delicious setting called Otheropolis that joined  with our mundane  parellel world, its main character is a detective called Jo trying to fit in in a world where he feels more at home than he ever did in the world where he was born.  And there the clues start falling immediately for your first twist in the story.  That of gender.  Its wonderful and I loved Jo even more  for it being unexpected.  Jo has some of his  own obstacles to overcome in this story as well as mysteries to solve.  Jo is joined by his partner Simone of Hecate, a witch.

I was expecting this to be a M/M story, its not.  I mistook Simone for Simon (face palm).  I’m going to leave the pairing off.  It’s a LGBTQIA story, there’s no sex, well little sex with heat to it. and it revolves around the mysteries which I really enjoyed. But yes gender does come into it and I like the way the author handled it for our main character and for the story.

What I did want was more of Otheropolis.  The concepts that Rancourt lays down for  her world  are intrequeing. I  want to know how the families  rule, more on the weather and how its all laid out.  It sounds  fascinating and all this story did was wet my taste for more.

Looking for something a little different?  With mysteries and main characters to grab at your interest and perhaps your heart too?  Give Too Many Cases by Julia Rancourt a try.

Cover art was interesting and I liked it, just like the book.

Sales Links

Less Than Three Press

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Book Details:

Kindle Edition
Published October 10th 2016 by Less Than Three Press, LLC
ASINB01MCS3F95
Edition LanguageEnglish

A Lila Review: A Sip Of Rio by Teodora Kostova

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Rating: 3.75 stars out of 5

a-sip-of-rio-by-teodora-kostovaLiam Young has a problem – he’s booked a romantic holiday to Rio de Janeiro months ago, but when he breaks up with his boyfriend, all his plans fall apart. Not only is his dream holiday slipping through his fingers, but Liam is tired of getting his heart broken.

Blaine Reed has a solution that can save Liam’s plans. Recently divorced, Blaine needs a break, and a couple of stress-free weeks in Rio with a sexy guy like Liam sound like heaven.

Liam and Blaine hit it off right from the start, becoming good friends even before they’ve left London. Despite their efforts to ignore the simmering attraction between them, it boils over when they end up sharing a room in one of the most romantic cities in the world.

Being together in Rio is easy, and it’s exactly what Liam needs – no feelings, no drama, nobody getting hurt.

Until someone does.

When the holiday bubble bursts, it’s up to them to find a way to be together outside of Rio’s seductive magic.

A Sip of Rio is a travel log story with two lovely main characters. The way they met and how their friendship started set the tone for the rest of the story. Liam and Blane had great chemistry from the very beginning and their love story felt easy and dynamic.

The author did an excellent job making the settings an integral part of the story. It was interesting to see Brazil through their eyes and how small details like height played a role. They enjoyed their time together and met interesting characters too. There were funny moments mixed with serious conversations, but the overall story was sexy, low angst, and easy to read.

My main issue with the story was the pacing. It started strong and interesting, but when the characters arrived in Brazil time slowed down. As soon as they left, time sped up again and we get a rushed ending.

The solution to their relationship problems and how they will get together, in the end, didn’t ring true to me. It was too much of a fairy tale for a story that did great showing the reader a contemporary setting. Also, I think that the wrong MC asked for forgiveness. Perhaps in the reverse, it would have had a stronger ending.

The cover goes with the feel of Brazil. The models seem a bit generic, but overall it represents the heart of the story.

Sale Links: Kindle Unlimited

ebook, 151 pages
Published: Oct 6, 2016, Kindle Unlimited
ISBN: B01M10UDTY
Edition Language: English