A MelanieM Review: Law of Love by Bob Masters

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Rating: 2 stars out of 5

 

1969 America is a time of protests against the war in Vietnam – long hair, rock music, and pot smoking. But it is also a time of free love, minority demands for equality, and even a fledgling gay rights movement.

Joseph Knight is a Park Ranger in rural Michigan and is supposed to be the opposite of all that, the upholder of laws against pot-smoking, pre-marital sex, and especially two men making love. But when a Jimmy Clayton, a 19 year old lifeguard with a perfect tan and long blond hair shows up in his life, Joseph is compelled to rethink some of his ideas about right and wrong.

How will he make his way in this uncharted territory where the rules are no longer clear and the law of the heart makes more sense than the head? Which law will prove more powerful, the law he’s sworn to uphold, or the law of love which tells him to “do his own thing” even if it means he might end up in jail?

I was hoping for good things for this story. I like historicals, especially from this time period and as a former Park Ranger/Naturalist, I was intrigued by the blurb.  Unfortunately, what I  found was a story that sounds like it was narrated, not by a 23 year old Ranger but by someone remembering their youth.  The dialog is old, and stiff.  The story is cumbersome and dense.  It gets worse when it comes to the romance where the characters have no chemistry at all or connection to each other.

This is one of those that I would have put in the DNF column if I had those.  Even the romance is unbelievable, with the 23 year old looking at the 18 year old and thinking him a “fine young man”.  Really?  The next words I expected was “and not one of the usual whippersnappers”.  The guy narrating it is 23 not 73. It was the summer of love and hippies and it’s reading like something out of the 40’s.    I was getting a timewarp whiplash.

Masters does get his era facts straight, and the story short.  In fact it just sort of ended quickly, which was fine.  If you are looking for a story set in the Summer of Love, era of Woodstock, I’d keep looking.

Cover art is in  keeping with the story.

Sales Link:   Amazon

Book Details:

ebook
Published May 9th 2017 by Deep Desires Press
ISBN139781370412112
Other Editions (1) Law Of Love,Law of Love is a 12,000-word novella.

An Alessandro Audiobook Review: Willow Man by John Inman and Austin Rising (Narrator)

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Rating: 3 stars out of 5

 

Woody Stiles has sung his country songs in every city on the map. His life is one long road trip in a never-ending quest for fame and fortune. But when his agent books him into a club in his hometown, a place he swore he would never set foot again, Woody comes face to face with a few old demons. One in particular.

With memories of his childhood bombarding him from every angle, Woody must accept the fact that his old enemy, Willow Man, was not just a figment of childish imagination. 

With his friends at his side, now all grown up just like he is, Woody goes to battle with the killer that stole his childhood lover. Woody also learns Willow Man has been busy while he was away, destroying even more of Woody’s past. And in the midst of all this drama, Woody is stunned to find himself falling in love—something he never thought he would do again.

As kids, Woody and his friends could not stop the killer who lived in the canyon where they played. As adults, they might just have a chance.

Or will they?

 

Woody is a country singer(not yet successful) who travels across the US doing jobs in bars. After his manager gets him a really good job in his hometown San Diego he is kind of spooked, because his hometown has some memories he rather not face. But he does it anyway, because he wants to get famous. But as soon as he arrives in San Diego he gets a visit of an old friend. The friend who has basically ruined is life. After his first show, he meets his old childhood friends and the journey begins. But there is a threat lurking in the shadows, and they’re all familiar with what and who the threat is.

 

Oh well, after I read the blurp I was really interested, that’s why I decided to review this book. And of course I’m a sucker for audiobooks. And it all could’ve been so good. I need to add, that this was my first ever horror book, in M/M or otherwise. And I thought I would like the genre, because I’m really into horror movies. But this was just not for me. I felt quite detached from this story, it didn’t draw me in as I hoped it would. I didn’t get spooked or felt hardly scared at all. It was just a “horror” story, with grotesque language from the evil in this book. It made me cringe a lot of times. Also, the story was quite depressing. I know this was a horror book… but I thought at least there could be some good moments… but there barely were any. At least not ones that I could understand and really relate to. And then there is this matter of the insta-love thing. Which I’m not a fan off, and I think in such a serious book, there is no place for that. I can relate to it a little bit, but not really.

 

As for the characters in this book, I think they were great. There was a lot of depth to them and they all felt like different people, this is one of the reasons I enjoyed this book. In such a short time, well it was so short, I think I dragged a little bit(a lot) one learns to love the characters. They all had character traits that were solely them. Like Cathy, I really loved her, she is like a witty, fearless(most of the time) and such an understanding person. The other 4 characters were great as well.

 

Now, lets talk about the writing and what bothered me and what I thought was just great. The writing was really beautiful, I think that was one of the best written books I’ve read so far. The expressions the author used, were so lyrical and just satisfying, even thought that made the narration rather slow moving.

Now to the things I didn’t really like about the writing and I will include a little bit of the issues I had with the construction of this book. Well as I said I really loved the writing, but it made the book really, really slow moving, to that point, that I couldn’t keep my interest. If I hadn’t decided to review this one, I probably would’ve quit and not finish it. I was listening to the audiobook and normally I just speed the narration just a little bit, because often the speed is just too slow for me. The speed that I use is 1.25. For this book I sped it up even further, sometimes I put it on 1.5 or even 1.75, just so I could get this book done as fast as possible.

The big issues that I had were with the construction of this book. When you read this book you are basically following 2 stories and several POV(the book is written in 3rd person POV). One of the stories is of Woody and his friends when they were younger, barely hitting puberty(13 years old). And because you followed the grown up Woody in the first few chapters, one basically knows what will happen in the peak of the story of the past. That’s what really was annoying. There is all the build up to an event you already know what will happen, yes you don’t know exactly how it will come to pass, but one knows the outcome. So there was no suspense at all. At least not in the story when they were teenagers.

The other story, where the group of friends are adults, isn’t quite what I would’ve liked it to be. As I said above, there was insta-love, which I couldn’t relate to at all but also the end was just a little bit anti-climactic. I thought at least there would be some blood, but no, there was just some groping of the evil and some cringy conversations going on. I was really disappointed.

 

The narration was superb. Austin Rising did a REALLY good job at narrating this book. Each character had their own “voice”. They even differed from the 2 story lines. The adults got their own voice and the teenagers did as well. But they weren’t as much different than the teenagers “voices”. So one could still distinguish which of the characters is “speaking”.

 

Would I recommend this book? Yes and no. For the ones who like a really dark story, with a lot of hurt and heartache, who are also a little in horror, I would definitely recommend this. But if you are looking for a book with equal amounts of romance and horror, like I did, I wouldn’t. For me it was quite a depressing story, not fun to read at all. I even needed to read a light hearted novella in between to just get through this book.

 


The Cover art of “Willow Man” by Aaron Anderson was quite fitting to this book. I think it shows the mood of the book and the intention of the author.

 Sales links:  DSP Publications | Amazon

  

Book Details:

Ebook 350 Pages

Published January 13th 2015 by DSP Publications

ISBN: 1632163500

Edition Language: English

Audiobook 12 Hrs 50 Min.

Audiobooks published April 7th by DSP Publications

ASIN: B06Y2KZRD8

Edition Language: English

Narrator: Austin Rising

A VVivacious Review: Lion’s Mate (Hell’s Creek #1) by Shannon West & T.S. McKinney

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Rating: 3 Stars out of 5
 
Julian finds himself right up Hell’s Creek, literally, when a wrong turn ends up with him right in the middle of Crazytown, USA. He finds himself immediately assaulted by a group of people who keep calling him kitty and keep telling him that the consequences of him ignoring the treaty will be grave indeed. As a last ditch effort Julian runs and finds himself across an imaginary border, only to faint at the sight of a lion headed his way.
 
He wakes up to find himself tied to a bed with a person who calls himself Leo and claims that they are mates. Can Julian escape Hell’s Creek before the craziness catches up to him or will this venture not only lead him on the path to love but also to answers about himself?
 
I am kind of on the fence with this book. I really enjoyed reading the book, but there was always this nagging thought at the back of my mind that I should be enjoying this book more, which I think was because I had really high expectations with this book. I love shifter romances and I love how Shannon West writes shifter romance and though I have never read T.S. McKinney before, I was really excited to read this.
 
The first thing that I found a little unbelievable was how clueless Julian is prior to Leo’s reveal. Up till that point he meets up with a ton of people who call him kitty and have weird ass notions of mates and scents and, treaties and borders. Not only that his first introduction to this oddity is violent enough to leave an impact so how is that not even once does Julian have a what if moment, I mean I would have enjoyed one and it would have made the whole thing a little more natural even if the moment were to be followed up by a vigorous refute of the notion.
 
In the first chapter of this book I stopped reading the book twice but when I did pick it up for the third time I read it till the very end. I don’t exactly know why I would stop reading but I’m pretty sure it was because of the fact that I didn’t particularly like that chapter. I mean the fact that Julian doesn’t understand what the Canis are saying and the Canis don’t believe what Julian is saying, kind of grates on the nerves. Also there is a whole lot of posturing and promises of an ill fate like every TV villain ever but when things actually boil down to action it is over very fast. Also can I just confess here that Canis is a very awkward name, what happened to the good old canine shifters?
 
Also what is up with Chloe, I so don’t believe her explanation that nothing would have happened to Leo, the Canis seemed dead set on raping Julian, and I for one don’t believe that they wouldn’t have gone through with it because then why did he have to run for his life if it was all just for fun. Moreover she knew that Julian was a feline shifter then why didn’t she try to rescue him or help him before he had to run for his life. Because after this incident she was all sugary nice and that left a very venomous after taste in my mouth. Yuck!
 
Apart from these three things the rest of the book is exactly what I like in a shifter romance. There is an amazing romance between Leo and Julian and I loved how it develops. I loved how the authors showed us a little bit of how Julian’s psyche affected their relationship and how he doesn’t believe he can be loved and how Leo has to slowly break down his walls. These two were incredibly hot together.
 
I also liked the plot of this book though everything did feel a little last minute but I am definitely intrigued as to the future of this series.
 
Cover art by E. Keith. I liked the cover. It fit the book and the genre.

Sales Links:  Painted Hearts Publishing | Amazon

Book Details:
ebook
Published May 9th 2017 by Painted Hearts Publishing
Edition Language English

A Caryn Review: Concourse (Five Boroughs #5) by Santino Hassell

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Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

First off, let me just say that I love, love, LOVE the Five Boroughs series, and I struggled with what rating to give this book.  I’ve become very invested in all of the characters, and I’ve also joined Mr. Hassell’s Patreon to read additional short stories that he writes in this universe (check out Patreon if you’re interested, it’s worth it!) He includes a pretty broad spectrum of NYCs queer community, and I continue to enjoy how all the characters are represented in each novel, even if only as cameos.

That being said, I think that Ashton Townsend, the main character of this book, was probably the one that I was least interested in reading more about.  In First and First, he was written as a wealthy, vapid, oversexed party boy who had no direction in life and didn’t even seem to want one.  I think this book started out a little behind the eight ball as the author had to reinvent Ashton as a lost soul who had a fabulous cover as an oversexed party boy, and that really was a bit of an uphill battle.  Valdrin Leka is a completely new character we haven’t seen in the earlier books, and the first from the Bronx.  He’s a cab driver by day, and amateur boxer by night, and has his sights set on qualifying for the Olympics so he can eventually go pro.  His mother was Ashton’s nanny, so these two men have known each other since they were pre-teens, and in many ways they grew up together despite coming from drastically different backgrounds.

This isn’t a story about falling in love.  These two men have been in love with each other for years, but for various reasons they have been unwilling to admit it to themselves or to each other.  And I guess that’s the main reason I didn’t like this book as much as I enjoyed the others in the series.  There seemed to be a very abrupt change, especially in Val, from being distant to being unable to stay away from each other.  The reasons given as to why they changed weren’t really convincing to me, and the angst in the book – yes, of course there is angst, even more than usual for this series – was mostly due to the secrets Val kept from Ashton, and Ashton’s deep seated insecurity.  And while the relationship between Raymond and David, or Michael and Nunzio, also had the same themes, for some reason I just wasn’t feeling it for Val and Ashton.  When these men just got over their issues at the end of the book, I could only wonder why the hell it took them so long.

Despite feeling a bit disappointed in the characters and the plot, I was happy to see another facet of sexuality introduced – the demisexual, or one who only feels sexual attraction infrequently, and usually only after a significant emotional bond has already developed.  Now in the Five Boroughs universe we have many gay characters, several bisexuals, a pansexual man, a lesbian woman, a demisexual man, some monogamous couples and some swingers.  The group of friends is increasingly diverse in regards to class and ethnicity as well, and I find it amazing how they all interact so well and so naturally with each other.  I am looking forward to the next book(s) in the series, which I think will be Jace and Aiden’s story, but I have to say that I am shipping Charles and Clive and hope that they will get together at some point as well.  Even though this is my least favorite in the series so far, I still can’t get enough of these characters and Mr. Hassell’s writing.  His characters are unique and interesting, his dialogue is fluent and effortless and some of the best I’ve read anywhere (not just in this genre), and his writing is exciting and just leaves me thirsting for more.  Very highly recommended!

Cover art by L. C. Chase, is, as always, amazing.  I would believe that Mr. Santino saw this model before he even dreamed about Ashton, he is so perfect.

Sales Links:  Riptide Publishing |Amazon | BNkobo | iBooks |

Book Details:

ebook, 366 pages
Published April 29th 2017 by Riptide Publishing
Original TitleConcourse
ISBN 1626495629 (ISBN13: 9781626495623)
Edition LanguageEnglish
URLhttp://riptidepublishing.com/titles/concourse
SeriesFive Boroughs #5

Bradley Lloyd on The Games of Shadow Fray and Shadow Fray (Shadow Fray: Round One) (author guest post, exclusive excerpt and giveaway)

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Shadow Fray (Shadow Fray #1) by Bradley Lloyd
DSP Publications
Cover Artist: Anna Sikorska

Available for Purchase at

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host Bradley Lloyd here today, talking about his latest release Shadow Fray. Welcome, Bradley!

✒︎

Let’s Play! The Games of Shadow Fray

In reading Shadow Fray, one might think the plot was decidedly adult. Think The Hunger Games but with a healthy dose of Fight Club. While I’m a fan of both titles, the inspiration for Shadow Fray came from a place far more innocent–the games I played as a little kid.

My childhood wasn’t filled with fisticuffs or mixed martial arts lessons; instead, I took daily trips with my siblings and friends to the municipal swimming pool. We played the standard games like Marco Polo, and we took turns swimming under each other’s legs without touching, kind of like an underwater version of the limbo. The game I most remember, though, was one based entirely on imagination.

In this game, our familiar pool became infested with invisible, hungry underwater creatures. You’d be fine if you never touched the bottom, because that’s where they lived. We’d spend all day swimming around, trying not to touch the bottom. If you did touch the bottom, that’s when the little monsters would attack with their nasty bites. Too many bites, and you could die. BUT if you managed to apply the special ointment in time, you could stave off infection and death.

The special ointment was Coppertone sunscreen lotion. The year we invented that game, we never got sunburned, believe me. In fact, we probably went through at least a giant economy bottle a week.

My main goal in writing Shadow Fray was to write something fun–a steamy, action-packed romance. So when I thought about what was most fun, this pool game came to mind, probably at first subconsciously but it morphed into a very important plot point.

In Shadow Fray, the ground has been poison for many years. Unlike the pool game, you can touch the ground, but prolonged exposure results in what the characters refer to as Ground Sickness. Because of this, those with enough money live in high-rises as far from the ground as possible.

For this reason, Justin is forced to fight in the underground tournament known as Shadow Fray. He needs to keep his twin sister and younger brother living safely off the ground, and the only way to supplement their meager income is for him to win. The stakes are high, especially when he faces Hale, a brawler he has long admired. Though they fight for similar reasons, they find themselves at odds, first with each other, and then the greater forces at work in the crumbling world around them.

If you’ve read this far, chances are getting better that you might also read the book, so I’m going to reveal a spoiler-free special secret right here. You won’t find out in the first book what really caused the ground toxification. Do I know? Yes. Will you know eventually? Yes. There’s clues if you want to try to figure it out, and like a good sci-fi, it has a basis in fact. Not revealing everything right away was a tricky decision for me as a writer. Is it realistic that people, after a post-apocalyptic event, wouldn’t know the cause or the remedy? One of the plot points is the misinformation provided by the shady people remaining in power. So, I decided, yes, it could be realistic. Granted, this was all before the election and the influx of “alternative facts,” so I think this choice was the right one to make, even prescient, though it asks the reader to follow me along for a bit.

You see, I think as I got older, my mind went from imagining pool monsters to imagining more realistic monsters, and now I love a good mystery. My favorite childhood game led me to a more adult game of playing sleuth, or maybe hide-and-seek, where it’s the truth that’s hiding. Shadow Fray is all about games, and I sincerely hope you’ll come and play along with me. ~ Bradley Lloyd

Book Blurb

Family is worth fighting for—and family doesn’t always mean blood.

 

No one knows what calamity poisoned the earth and decimated the human population, but living close to the toxic ground means illness and death. Justin is determined to keep his twin sister and younger brother from that fate—no matter what he has to do. To earn enough to keep his family safe in a high-rise, Justin enlists in a deadly sport called Shadow Fray. He quickly finds himself in over his head, especially when he is scheduled to face the most dangerous player.

 

Hale—who competes as Black Jim—knows he won’t be on top forever, despite his skills. He fights for a better life for his daughter, but his time is running out as Shadow Fray becomes increasingly lethal. Something about the newest fighter intrigues him, but does he dare defy his masters to investigate? Justin and Hale will clash in the ring, while beyond it the powerful elite and the crumbling world seem determined to keep them apart. If they can find common ground, they might have a chance to fight for their futures.

Exclusive Excerpt

Since my guest blog post is about childhood games, I thought I would introduce you to one of my favorite characters, the 10-year-old Charlie, who is mute. He’s the much younger brother of our hero, Justin. Even though he doesn’t talk, Charlie is still very expressive, like in this school assignment. In the book, Justin secretly holds on to this letter as a reminder of his reason for fighting in Shadow Fray. It’s also a great introduction to the Shadow Fray world. Enjoy!

Handwriting Practice

The Person I Look Up to Most

To: Sister Tim

From: Charlie

Justin does his best even when it’s hard, even when he’s tired and maybe hurting a little bit. He always shows courage. That’s why he’s the person I look up to the most.

I think we all have secrets to keep. It’s nice to have a little bit of privacy, like from the drones, and my brother tries to give us that. But we never hide. He wants me to have a normal life, whatever that is. My brother keeps secrets, but not from me. And he helps me keep my secrets too. Sometimes we hide from the drones like Shutters, but mostly we pretend like it’s just us.

Justin always tries to do what’s best for my sister and me. He raised me when my sister was at work. He always did lots of stuff with me. He read me books until I could read on my own. I didn’t even need school for that, because he taught me. But our favorite thing to do is watch cartoons.

He tries to keep things from me, but not in a bad way. He puts his tablet down all the time, but I know he’s reading. It’s almost like he doesn’t want anyone to know he reads, not even me. I think he doesn’t want me to be too curious about things. It’s another way he tries to protect me. So we just do kid stuff. But that’s okay.

My brother is really strong. He works out and he lifts weights. He makes me come with him and read a book but I watch him too. I know he stays strong to protect me and my sister. My sister is fertile, and so he always feels like he has to protect her because she’s in danger or something. My sister can take care of herself, but he does it anyway. I like that about him.

Justin’s secret is that he’s really smart. Like, really smart. Someday, my brother is going to figure out what is wrong with the world. He will figure out why all the people got sick and died so long ago, and what happened to poison the ground. Then he’ll find out why there’s not as many girls anymore, and why people can’t have babies. Maybe he’ll even find the cure for ground sickness, but that’s probably asking too much. I mean, he can’t do everything.

Here’s a secret about him and me. He says there’s two kinds of people—people who stay alive and people who go poking their noses where they don’t belong. I don’t say it (ha ha), but I know he’s both, and I’m both too. So really, there’s three kinds of people. But don’t tell him I said that.

He wants me to go to college at Exxon or DuPont in Chicago. I like that idea. Because if my brother doesn’t find out what happened and how to fix it, I want to find out for him. He’d like to take me out of Bruise City to Chicago, but maybe someday I will do that for him instead. Anyway, I like it here, because this is my home, and this is where you are too. Thanks for being the best teacher.

He would be so mad if he knew I wrote this. But I know you keep secrets too. So please keep my secret. I know you will, because you’re the third person I most look up to, and you always tell me I can do anything.

My brother tells me that too.

From: Charlie

P.S. My sister is the second person and I also have a friend named Gristopher Mays and he’s the fourth person. He’s really nice but I haven’t known him as long as I’ve known you.

P.P.S. I think you are that special third kind of person too. Thanks for being the best teacher.

Since my guest blog post is about childhood games, I thought I would introduce you to one of my favorite characters, the 10-year-old Charlie, who is mute. He’s the much younger brother of our hero, Justin. Even though he doesn’t talk, Charlie is still very expressive, like in this school assignment. In the book, Justin secretly holds on to this letter as a reminder of his reason for fighting in Shadow Fray. It’s also a great introduction to the Shadow Fray world. Enjoy!

Giveaway

Rafflecopter Giveaway: $20 Amazon gift card.  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.

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About the Author

Bradley Lloyd is a Chicago-born author who studied Creative Writing at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He was raised in a conservative religious household but became aware of his sexuality at a very young age—about the same age he learned of his ancestry to Hans Christian Andersen. Inspired by this knowledge, writing became an outlet that helped him cope with inner conflicts and bullying.

Of course, he was no angel and occasionally used his storytelling powers for evil. He once convinced the neighborhood children that gnomes had been real before all being turned into lawn ornaments.

Later, these experiences lead him to work with middle-school students. Now a teacher in the inner city, he shares his love of writing with a captive audience of kids, who are thrilled with true(ish) tales of their haunted school building. 

Interestingly, his favorite UFC fighter and former world champion was a student at his school, and when Brad is not reading or writing, you might find him hosting the next UFC pay-per-view event party. His dreams of becoming an ultimate fighter are realized vicariously through his stories and video games.

Brad is happily married to a wonderful husband. Their tenth anniversary was also the day same-sex marriage became legal, and they were couple number seven at the courthouse.

You can read more of Brad’s (free) tales on his website BradleyLloyd.com, check him out on Medium, follow IMBradleyLloyd on Facebook and Twitter,

or e-mail him directly at IMBradleyLloyd@BradleyLloyd.com

Ari Mckay on Breaking Bonds (guest post and excerpt)

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Breaking Bonds (The Walker Boys #2) by Ari McKay
D
reamspinner Press

Buy Links

 Dreamspinner PressAmazon  | Barnes & Noble

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to have Arionrhod of Ari McKay here today talking about the second book of their  Walker Boys series, Breaking Bonds.  Welcome!

✒︎

Hello, everyone! Thanks for taking time out of your day to spend a few minutes with me today. I’m Arionrhod, the “Ari” half of Ari McKay, and I’m here to talk a bit about our upcoming release on June 1, Breaking Bonds.

This story is the second involving one of the Walker Boys, our fictional family of Texas hunks who love cooking. Like his cousin Beau from Striking Sparks, Liam Walker was born with a spatula in one had and a tasting spoon in his mouth. But Liam’s path takes him out of Texas, to the cutthroat culinary world of New York City, where he spends almost a decade working his way up the ladder. He has the good fortune to be discovered by a famous celebrity chef, Marco Cabrisi, who makes Liam the executive chef of one of his premiere restaurants. Yet even as Liam stands only one step away from the dream of opening his own restaurant, his temper lands him in hot water. Marco tells him to take a vacation to cool off, and so he picks a resort at random — and finds himself taking up the role of savior for handsome resort owner Carter Galloway.

Carter has some issues of his own, trying to fulfill his dream of owning his own resort, against the wishes of his domineering parents. The Overlook has potential, but Carter is cash-strapped and stretched incredibly thin. He knows he’s taking a risk when he hires an inexperienced chef, but he doesn’t know just how bad things are until Liam Walker complains about the food. He’s desperate enough that he accepts Liam’s offer of help in getting the restaurant turned around, and can’t help being attracted to Liam playing white knight.

As the two of them work together, they realize they have great chemistry, but they both have obligations that prevent them from acting on it. Carter isn’t going to fuel the prejudices of his homophobic parents by engaging in a short term fling — no matter how much he really wants to — and unfortunately, Liam has a life and commitments in New York, so he can’t offer anything else. That is the central conflict of the story — both men finding a way to cut the chains binding them to the past in order to embrace a future together.

It’s not all conflict, of course! There is a real connection between Carter and Liam, and they each recognize the passion in the other, and the desire to succeed. Plus there is great food, amazing scenery, and a lot of Southern charm.  We hope you’ll give Breaking Bonds a try — this was one of my favorite stories that we’ve ever written, and I’m sure you’ll enjoy it!

Here’s a little taste, to whet your appetite. Bon appetit!

After they were loaded up, Liam asked Eckhart for recommendations for meat markets, pulled out his phone, and made note of the information.

“I think that takes care of everything here,” Liam said. “Shall we tackle the meat now? I think Rocky can handle lunch. We’re keeping it simple, and I made the soups during breakfast.”

Carter knew Liam’s comment about tackling the meat wasn’t meant to be suggestive, but that he wanted to snicker like a twelve-year-old meant that he’d probably been celibate too long. “Meat tackling sounds good to me,” he replied as he started up the van.

Liam turned in his seat, raising one eyebrow as if he’d read something of Carter’s thoughts in the tone of his voice. “It sounds good to me too,” he drawled. “I normally frown on mixing business and pleasure, but considering I’m not really your employee, I suppose it doesn’t cross that boundary.”

Carter shot a wide-eyed look at Liam, startled that Liam had not only picked up on his innuendo but had also responded with such bluntness. At least that answered the question of Liam’s sexuality.

“I—uh—” Carter floundered for a way to respond that wouldn’t offend Liam, because he couldn’t get involved, not even short term. He had too little time in the day as it was, and besides, he was fighting enough hard battles with his parents already. He didn’t have the energy to start waging another one. “I’m sorry if that was inappropriate. You’re an attractive man, but you’ve made it clear you’re only here for two weeks, and I don’t do flings.”

Liam looked at him for a long moment, then shrugged. “Sure,” he said, not seeming offended, though there might have been just a touch of disappointment in his voice. “To be honest, part of the reason I said it was because I caught the flirtation last night. I was trying to see if that was actual interest or if that’s just your way.”

“A little of both,” Carter replied, deciding he might as well be honest. Liam was attractive, and under different circumstances, Carter would have taken him up on the offer, but the timing was all wrong right now. “I’ll stop if it bothers you, though. I don’t want to make you uncomfortable.”

With a snort of amusement, Liam shook his head. “I’ve spent the last ten years in New York City, working as everything from a dishwasher to an executive chef. I’ve seen it all, son—and been hit on by half of it.” A slight shadow crossed his face, but it was gone quickly. “It takes a lot more than an innocent bit of flirtation to ruffle my feathers.”

“I’m glad to hear it.” Carter smiled, relieved to know he hadn’t damaged their working relationship. “So which of the meat markets do you want to try first?”

BLURB

From the frying pan into the fire.

After a critic’s review attacks both Chef Liam Walker’s culinary skills and his personal life, Liam can no longer take the heat of the cutthroat New York City restaurant scene. He needs to get out of the kitchen—at least long enough to cool down and regroup.

At the Overlook Resort in North Carolina, Liam meets owner Carter Galloway. Carter has a passion for the hospitality business to rival Liam’s own, and it’s not hard to see where their shared interests—and attraction—could lead. But Carter has no interest in a fling, and Liam has no intention of walking away from the career he fought so hard for. If they want a taste of happiness together, they’ll have to find the courage to break the bonds threatening to pull them apart.

About the Author(s)

Ari McKay is the professional pseudonym for Arionrhod and McKay, who have been writing together for over a decade. Their collaborations encompass a wide variety of romance genres, including contemporary, fantasy, science fiction, gothic, and action/adventure. Their work includes the Blood Bathory series of paranormal novels, the Herc’s Mercs series, as well as two historical Westerns: Heart of Stone and Finding Forgiveness. When not writing, they can often be found scheming over costume designs or binge watching TV shows together.

Arionrhod is a systems engineer by day who is eagerly looking forward to (hopefully) becoming a full time writer in the not-too-distant future. Now that she is an empty-nester, she has turned her attentions to finding the perfect piece of land to build a fortress in preparation for the zombie apocalypse, and baking (and eating) far too many cakes.

McKay is an English teacher who has been writing for one reason or another most of her life. She also enjoys knitting, reading, cooking, and playing video games. She has been known to knit in public. Given she has the survival skills of a gnat, she’s relying on Arionrhod to help her survive the zombie apocalypse.

Arionrhod and McKay

CONTACTS:

Release Day Blitz and Giveaway for Performance Review by Tamryn Eradani (excerpt)

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Title:  Performance Review

Series: Daniel and Ryan, book 5

Author: Tamryn Eradani

Publisher:  NineStar Press

Release Date: May 29, 2017

Heat Level: 5 – Erotica

Pairing: Male/Male

Length: 11600

Genre: Contemporary, BDSM, businessmen, friends to lovers, bisexual

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Synopsi

After a day testing Daniel’s limits and then a day being spoiled, Daniel has some time to reflect on his and Ryan’s relationship. He thinks they’re ready for their next step; planning a weekend away.

Excerpt

Performance Review
Tamryn Eradani © 2017
All Rights Reserved

 

Sundays are the one day of the week that Daniel doesn’t run, which also makes it the one day of the week he lets himself sleep in. There’s no alarm yanking him out of his sleep, no carefully planned morning routine to force him out of bed. Instead, he wakes slowly, arms stretching out, reaching toward the far side of the bed.

His hand knocks into an extra pillow, but doesn’t encounter another person, and that makes Daniel open his eyes. There’s supposed to be someone else in bed with him.

The other side of the bed is empty, and Daniel brushes his hand over the empty space. The sheets are cool. Which means Ryan’s been up for a while. Craning his head to get a look into the bathroom, Daniel sees that the lights are off.

Daniel pushes down the wave of hurt that comes when he realizes Ryan’s left him to go into the other room. Daniel leaves Ryan sleeping alone in the bed all time, especially on Saturdays when he wakes up much earlier so he can go running. And it’s not like he needs Ryan here.

He just wants him.

Awake now, Daniel slides out of bed, pausing as the first movement he makes alerts him to the fact that his entire body is sore. It’s an achy kind of pain, from his neck to his toes, muscles complaining that he didn’t even know he has. That’s what he gets for being so tense last night. Turns out not getting to come over and over again is a full body workout.

He likes the soreness. It’s not painful. It’s a reminder every time he moves of what happened last night. A reminder of how desperate he was. Desperate enough to cry. Desperate enough to beg Ryan to fuck him.

Daniel flushes, embarrassed even though he’s the only one in the room. It’s another useless emotion. There’s nothing for him to be ashamed of. If Daniel didn’t want Ryan to fuck him, then they wouldn’t be in a sexual relationship. And if Ryan didn’t want Daniel begging for it, then he wouldn’t have teased Daniel for as long as he did.

Then why isn’t he here, the insidious part of Daniel’s brain wants to know.

Daniel forces himself out of the room, but he doesn’t go looking for Ryan right away. He goes to Ryan’s bedroom instead, because his overnight bag didn’t make it to the guest bedroom, and Daniel doesn’t like wandering around his own apartment without clothes on, let alone Ryan’s apartment.

He pulls on a pair of sweatpants and a plain white V-neck, but it’s a little chilly in the apartment, and he looks around for something warmer. He has a sweatshirt in his bag, but it’s not what he wants. His eyes fall on one of Ryan’s cardigans, hanging over the open closet door. So close to being put back away.

Daniel plucks it from its current resting place, and slips his arms through the sleeves. Ryan doesn’t wear cardigans to work, or he hasn’t yet that Daniel’s seen, but he has a whole collection of them in his apartment. They’re all stretched at the sleeves or fraying at the collar. This one is light blue, and its sleeves are loose from being rolled up too many times.

Daniel tugs the sleeves over his hands and goes to find the owner of the cardigan.

Ryan’s in the guest room, standing by the bed with two plates in his hands and looking confused.

Daniel watches him wander over to check the bathroom, before he says, “Looking for someone?”

Ryan turns around, smiling when he spots Daniel in the doorway. “I was hoping to catch you before you got out of bed,” he says, holding up the two plates of breakfast for Daniel to see.

“Breakfast in bed?” Daniel asks. “Isn’t that messy?”

“We’ve got to wash the other sheets anyways.” Ryan sits down on the bed. “Come on, live adventurously.”

“I thought that’s what we did last night,” Daniel says, but he joins Ryan on the bed.

Purchase

NineStar Press | Amazon | Smashwords | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Meet the Author

Tamryn studied English and Creative Writing in school but has been writing since she could first hold a pencil. Recently, she’s turned her focus towards writing erotica. She enjoys writing stories where sex comes first, then feelings, because doing things out of order can be fun.

Tamryn has spent the past few months writing the Daniel and Ryan series with a lovely view of mountains out her window, and she’s now searching for a new mountain range to serve as her backdrop as she begins her next project.

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