An Alisa Release Day Review: Coasting (States of Love) by Yvonne Trent

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Rating:  3 stars out of 5

 

What happens when you need something but don’t know what it is? Why not look in a place you never heard of?

 

Out and proud elementary school teacher Cal Hamilton thought he was happy in Philadelphia, but after a breakup, he steps back to reassess his life and discovers something is missing. He gets in his car and drives south with no idea what he hopes to find. The flip of a coin leads him to a small town in Mississippi—practically a different world from the city where he grew up.

 

Police officer Billy Labarre keeps his sexuality mostly to himself, but he knows just what he needs to fill the hole in his quiet small-town life: the right man. Unfortunately attitudes toward gay men still leave a lot to be desired in the rural South, and it’s hard to meet someone. It’s not likely his perfect match is just going to show up out of the blue….

 

This was a nice story.  Cal is trying to get his head on straight after a breakup and follows his gut on a road trip.  His coin flip leads him west towards Mississippi from Florida and he can’t ignore his gut feeling to pull off in Ocean Springs.  He’s lucky to run into Billy that evening as he has been unable to find a place to stay and Billy opens his home to him.

 

Billy and Cal immediately hit it off and are perfect example of when it feels right you don’t question it.  Both of these characters are very open about their feeling to each other so there is no second guessing what they want.  Though Billy was living half in the closet when the story began and the author doesn’t go into it but I would think he can’t really be doing that anymore once Cal is living with him and has a job in the local school.  I enjoyed this story however felt as though there was something missing and some of the breaking points in the story seemed very abrupt.

 

Cover art by Brooke Albrecht is absolutely beautiful and I love it.

 

Sales Links: Dreamspinner Press | Amazon | B&N

 

Book Details:

ebook, 112 pages

Published: August 23, 2017 by Dreamspinner Press

ISBN-13: 978-1-63533-700-6

Edition Language: English

Series: A States of Love Story

A VVivacious Review: How to Love a Monster by Lyssa Dering

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Rating: 3.75 Stars out of 5

Seraphim finds himself in an afterlife. He finds himself in Wish City a place created by Wish for super-humans like Sera and himself.

In Wish City, Sera finds himself in the company of Fiend who may or may not have imprisoned Sera in his house. While Sera finds himself falling for Fiend, he keeps coming across clues pointing out the fact that everything he believes about Fiend might not true. When Fiend’s strange proclivities come to light what will become of Sera and their budding relationship?

This book made for a very interesting read. I personally find the subject of afterlife quite interesting and Wish City is a very innovative outlook on the afterlife. Also, the fact that these people are super-humans is kind of amazing.

What really had me interested was Sera’s power and I really wanted to see what applications would come of having such a power so, I was a bit disappointed about the fact that we didn’t get to see much about that. Sera’s power is deactivated for much of the book and doesn’t really contribute much to the storyline. Fortunately, the loss of emphasis on Sera’s super-ability was made up by all the emphasis on Wish’s ability.

Wish’s super-ability is the fact that everything he creates in his mind becomes reality, like if he makes up a place in his head where super-humans end up after death then this place actually exists and becomes reality.  So Wish is basically a miniature God and if he were to turn evil things would actually be very, very bad which actually brings me to the question about how such a powerful human being ended up being captured which just illustrates the fact that there isn’t much we know about how Wish’s ability worked while he was alive but he is definitely the God of Wish City. So you can imagine his surprise when on getting to Wish City he is immediately sedated and imprisoned by his childhood Bogeyman, Fiend, a monster he had forgotten even existed.

Fiend is an amazing character. I must commend the author’s characterisation of Fiend because his character is one that could only have been dreamt up by a kid. He is this rare mixture of sweet with a hunger for brains. There is just something about Fiend that makes it very obvious that only innocence could have birthed his character.

I loved the world of Wish City I especially loved how the author made use of the uniqueness of Wish City to carry the plot forward. This was something that made the story very intriguing.

I loved the premise for the book and the plot. The author paces this book very well. Just before you start getting bored of a particular set of events she turns the tide keeping things interesting at all times.

All in all, this makes for a unique and interesting tale and if you are looking for something different, this is the book to go for.

Cover Art by Lyssa Dering. I like the cover it truly fits the book.

Sales Links:  Amazon

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 164 pages
Published August 12th 2017
ASINB074S89JKF

A Lila Review: The Heart of the Lost Star by Megan Derr

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Rating: 5 stars out of 5

 

Kamir is on the verge of losing everything. Knowing full well he can’t meet the ultimatum his parents have issued, he instead finally puts in motion his plans to live completely independent of them. His plans are interrupted, however, by the unexpected return of his despised ex-husband—and thrown even further into upheaval when he ends up comforting the man he’s secretly loved for years.

Jader may not know where he comes from, but he knows where he belongs and what he wants—until he helps rescue some stranded Bentan travelers, one of whom look almost exactly like Jader, throwing his life and everything he thought he knew into tumult. Scared and overwhelmed, Jader flees—and lands unexpectedly in the arms of a man he’s always seen, but never really noticed.

 

The Heart of the Lost Star brings two lonely men together despite their differences. They come from different stations in life and have achieved success through hard work. They complement each other and understand their need for independence and to have space to take their own decisions.

 

Some of those decisions put them at odds with their families, the court, and those around them that want to control their lives or feel the need to look down at them due to their circumstances. Throughout the story, we experience how they deal with all this and the future they built, separate and as a couple.

 

This is an unorthodox romance story since the characters spent more time apart than together. Even so, their relationship works and we get invested in their journeys. We do follow their courtship from the distance and that allows the reader to experience, in real time, what the characters did.

 

The differences between genders and nonbinary characters are shown a bit more in this installment. I need to admit that I didn’t realize them during the first two books in the series. The author did an excellent job integrating all the information between the culture and world-build. Every small detail added to the overall feeling of place in the story.

 

We also get updates about the previous couples and they do play a recurring role. Also, we learn more about the relationship between the kingdoms and their geography, politics, and culture. And during the story, as it is to be expected, we get small hints about the next story in the series, The Mercenaries of the Stolen Moon.

 

The cover by John Coulthart follows the style of the previous two books. It’s beautiful and it fits the story to perfection, showing us a profile view of Jader and Benta.

 

Sale Links: LT3 | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

 

Book Details:

 

ebook, 320 pages
Published: August 23, 2017, by Less Than Three Press
ISBN: 1684310601 (ISBN13: 9781684310609)
Edition Language: English

 

Series: Tales of the High Court
Book #1: The High King’s Golden Tongue
Book #2: The Pirate of Fathoms Deep
Book #3: The Heart of the Lost Star

A Jeri Review: Tops Down Bottoms Up by Jay Northcote

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Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5

This was a fun little read! Jay writes feel good books with little or no angst. And sometimes that is exactly what you need.
This was another example of not only opposites attract, but of one of the main characters getting caught making fun of what the other main character does. Namely Morris dancing. I had no idea what this was (silly American that I am!) and was off to youtube to get a better picture. But once Rowan is softly pushed into trying it, he doesn’t hate it like he thought he would. And that isn’t just because Seth is hot and the sexual innuendos fly.
But after a quickly punched in phone number turns out to be one digit wrong, Rowan figures it was a festival fling and to move on. But his best friend finds out where the Morris dancers are next and has a plan to get Rowan and Seth back together.
This book is a perfect read for sitting by the beach or pool. It will put a smile on your face, the sex isn’t off the charts steamy so you won’t be red in the face in public, and it is a quick read.
Enjoy this little Morris dancing romp.
Cover Design: Garrett Leigh @ Black Jazz Design.  Sexy and appealing.

Sales Links:

Amazon US:http://amzn.to/2uHLViY

Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2w92Wmu

Book Details:
Kindle Edition, 91 pages
Published August 16th 2017 by Jaybird Press
Original TitleTops Down Bottoms Up
ASINB074TVDMFQ

Review Tour for Jay Northcote’s Tops Down Bottoms Up

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Buy Links: Amazon US:http://amzn.to/2uHLViY

Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2w92Wmu

 
Length: 23,000 words approx 
 
 
Blurb

 

Will Rowan’s festival fling with sexy dancer Seth lead to something more permanent?


Rowan is stuck at a folk festival helping out a mate, and it really isn’t his scene. The yoga and singing workshops are bad enough, but morris dancing is the final straw. Bearded men with beer guts prancing around wearing bells—who wants to watch that?


All Rowan’s preconceptions are shattered when he meets Seth—a morris dancer, and the stuff Rowan’s fantasies are made of. Seth persuades Rowan to come to a dancing workshop, and Rowan’s willing to do whatever it takes to get to know Seth better. The attraction is mutual, and a lesson filled with innuendo and flirting leads to an incredible night together.


When Rowan arrives home, he’s gutted to find that Seth has given him the wrong phone number. Assuming Seth did it on purpose, Rowan resolves to forget about him. But fate—and friends—conspire to get them back together. Will they manage to stay in step this time around?

A much shorter version of this story was originally published in the Not Quite Shakespeare Anthology by Dreamspinner Press. This version has been revised and extended. Almost half of it is new content


 


Author Bio

Jay lives just outside Bristol in the West of England. He comes from a family of writers, but always used to believe that the gene for fiction writing had passed him by. He spent years only ever writing emails, articles, or website content.


One day, Jay decided to try and write a short story—just to see if he could—and found it rather addictive. He hasn’t stopped writing since.


Jay writes contemporary romance about men who fall in love with other men. He has five books published by Dreamspinner Press, and also self-publishes under the imprint Jaybird Press. Many of his books are now available as audiobooks.


Jay is transgender and was formerly known as she/her.

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Blog Tour for Inhuman Beings by Richard May (excerpt and giveaway)

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IB banner

Title: Inhuman Beings
Author: Richard May
Release Date: June 15th 2017
Genre: Gay Fiction, Fantasy, Paranormal, Sci-Fi, Erotic

Inhuman Beings-Front cover

BLURB

Fall in love with a shapeshifter in San Francisco, a ghost in Scotland, or a vampire in Russia. Time travel to 1920s Mesopotamia, 1600’s Africa, or to ancient Greece before time even existed. Find yourself on a distant planet, in love with a creature whose very being can destroy you, or in a post-apocalyptic world, drawn to a mutation created by the destruction of Earth.

Enjoy these 18 erotic stories about romantic encounters between men and not men–monsters and myths, gods and demons, science fiction and fantasy. Each story is the stuff of nightmares–and of dreams.

Add Inhuman Beings to Goodreads

Paperback Purchase: Amazon US | Amazon UK *The paperback version has 3 new stories*

Ebook Purchase: Amazon US | Amazon UK | MLR Press

REVIEWS

“With Inhuman Beings, May seductively crosses the boundaries of time and space, the real and the imaginary, in these spellbinding tales of love and lust and things that go bump, not to mention hump, in the night.”

Rob Rosen, editor of the Best Gay Erotica series

Inhuman Beings is an enormously imaginative, genre-crossing work in the tradition of Peter Cashorali’s groundbreaking Fairy Tales but with greater breadth and franker eroticism; an impres­sive achievement.”

Michael Nava, author of the Henry Rios novels

Inhuman Beings represents a seminal work in gay male erotic literature that draws on the threads and yarns of our cultures and civiliza­tions. Tales from many countries and eras transport you across the globe and through the years, making this book one that will stand the test of time.”

Wayne Goodman, author of Better Angels

“Richard May’s new collection of short fiction contains an international menagerie of legendary creatures. There’s a Hindu god, a Native American cyclone spirit, a Chinese rain dragon, a moody Jewish golem, a sadistic Iraqi jinn, and more. Fans of the homoerotic melded with the speculative and the paranormal will savor every page of Inhuman Beings.”

Jeff Mann, author of Country and Consent

“The beauty of this collection lies in its imagination – May is doing nothing less than writing a gay mythology, complete with monsters and fairy tales, imagined futures and refreshed pasts. His bold infusion of desire into mythology and encounters with the paranormal is unique, bracing and insightful. Inhuman Beings is full of a kind of sacred frivolity.”

Trebor Healey, author of Faun and Eros & Dust

EXCERPT

Clocks told me it was after midnight, the new last day for the Daberleys at Enscombe. I climbed the central staircase, thinking of all the feet which had trod before me.

My father’s bedroom felt freezing so in quick order I stripped, not bothering to hang my clothes, and slid under the heavy blankets. Sleep came quickly but I was awakened soon after, or so it seemed, by the sound of footsteps in the hall outside my room. I was groggy and pulling myself into sitting when the bedroom door opened and the shadow of a tall man stood in the doorframe.

“Aren’t you afraid?” he asked in Stephen Taylor’s voice.

“No,” I lied, jumping out of bed and turning on the lamp, only belatedly covering myself with underwear tossed aside.

“But I do want to know what you’re doing in my house in the middle of the night.”

“I come here often,” was all he said as he entered the room and closed the door. I made ready for him as he came across the carpet but he just sat, slumping in the armchair.

“He killed me, you know.”

Giveaway: Comment on this post for a chance to win a copy of Inhuman Beings

About the Author

Richard May

Richard May’s short fiction has been published in his collections Inhuman Beings and Ginger Snaps: Photos & Stories (with photographer David Sweet), his series Gay All Year on Amazon Kindle, in anthologies like Never Too Late, Best Gay Erotica, and the Lambda Literary nominated Outer Voices Inner Lives, and in literary journals, including Bay Laurel, Chelsea Station, and Hyacinth Noir.

Rick also organizes the monthly Perfectly Queer book reading series with his partner Wayne Goodman in Oakland CA at Nomadic Press: Uptown and in San Francisco at Dog Eared Books Castro, individual LGBTQ Pride Readings for visiting authors, the annual literary festival Word Week in Noe Valley CA, and an online book club Reading Queer Authors Lost to AIDS.

Rick is from Sacramento CA and Brooklyn NY and now lives in San Francisco. He has red hair and truly believes in all things ginger. Another genetic stunner: he is 19th cousin to Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain.

Please follow him on social media at facebook.com/richardmaywriter, @rickmaywritr on Twitter, and richard.may1313 on Instagram.

Links: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

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