A MelanieM Release Day Review: 415 Ink: Rebel by Rhys Ford

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Rating: 5 stars out of 5

The hardest thing a rebel can do isn’t standing up for something — it’s standing up for himself.

Life takes delight in stabbing Gus Scott in the back when he least expects it. After years of running from his past, present and the dismal future every social worker predicted for him, Karma delivers the one thing Gus could never—would never—turn his back on; a son from a one-night stand he’d had after a devastating break-up three years ago.

Returning to San Francisco and to 415 Ink, his family’s tattoo shop, gave him the perfect shelter to battle his personal demons and get himself together… until the firefighter who’d broken him walked back into Gus’s life.

For Rey Montenegro, tattoo artist Gus Scott was an elusive brass ring, a glittering prize he hadn’t the strength or flexibility to hold onto. Severing his relationship with the mercurial tattoo artist hurt but Gus hadn’t wanted the kind of domestic life Rey craved, leaving Rey with an aching chasm in his soul.

When Gus’s life and world starts to unravel, Rey helps him pick up the pieces, and Gus wonders if that forever Rey wants is more than just a dream.

415 Ink: Rebel launches the start of another series by Rhys Ford in stunning style.  A second chance at love story, full of wounded, life-damaged men in search of love and HEA, 415 Ink: Rebel is exactly why I eagerly await each new release by this author. It’s full of people whose lives are easy to fall into, in this case Gus Scott, a wandering tattoo artist returning home after a two and a half year absence with startling news.  Due to one nightmarish breakup and a drunken night years ago, he’s just now learned he’s a father.  Something a gay man is astonished to hear.  And he wants to be a part of his son’s life.

As with most of Rhys Ford’s characters, there’s layers upon layers to Gus Scott and the men he calls family, a group of men tattooed, laden with their own issues, including a past history with Gus burdened with pain and misunderstandings.  To say he’s returning home to a mixed welcome is understated.

As the story unfolds and Gus reveals the news behind his return from his travels, Ford weaves the reader into the emotional fabric of these men and their universe.  We feel Gus’ pain when he finds out he’s a father, his desire to be a part of Chris’ life, the history that led up to Chris’ existence, all mired in one bad decision and breakup that’s casting reverberations still.  It’s nigh to impossible to remain unmoved by this story, especially when all involved want what’s best for Chris.  No “nasty mom or mother’s parents” to be found here.  Instead it’s a refreshing change of responsible adults working together in the best interests of a child.

Yes, this is an emotional journey and not just for Gus and Rey, but for all in the house as they also work to help provide support for Gus and Chris.  Due to Rhys Ford’s superb characters, vivid scenes, and dramatic narrative, I not only felt a part of their lives but believed in them absolutely.

What do you get with a Rhys Ford story?  Men to love, broken hearts in need of mending, extended families giving support, and more romance and angst to overflow any tale….all that and more superbly done.  I’ll leave you with this…

“I’m sorry I wasn’t what you wanted me to be, but you know what? You weren’t what I needed either, even if you were all I wanted.”

Sigh.  Now to wait for the next in the series.  Until then, pick up 415 Ink: Rebel by Rhys Ford.  I highly recommend it.

Cover Artist: Reece Notley.  Another great cover by Reece Notley.  That’s exactly my  idea of Gus.

Sales Links:  Dreamspinner Press | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 220 pages
Expected publication: December 29th 2017 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN139781640803848
Edition LanguageEnglish
Series 415 Ink #1

A MelanieM Advent Release Day Review: New Game, Start by C.S. Poe

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Reclusive medieval scholar, Edgar Royal, has a crush. On a guy. Not a big deal, except that said guy, Walter Chase, is a famous online gamer who has no idea Edgar even exists. Edgar has harbored these feelings for nearly a year, and when Walter announces on Twitter that he’ll be visiting New York City as a guest at the GamerOn convention, Edgar decides he’ll be one of the thousands of fans who responds to the message.

He definitely doesn’t expect to be singled out by the humble, gorgeous, out-and-proud heartthrob. And when it comes to dealing with people, Edgar’s skills are pretty nonexistent. Even with Walter giving all the right signals, Edgar lacks the courage do anything about the mutual attraction growing through their online courtship. He’s always been better with the written word, so maybe the perfect Christmas gift will say what he cannot. But if Edgar can’t get the present to Walter before the convention ends, he may miss out on the boyfriend of a lifetime.

I enjoy stories about gamer nerds so combining that with a holiday theme is a definite draw. C.S. Poe gets the gaming aspects spot on while creating a sweet romance for Edgar and Walter, two gamers looking for love at a convention in NYC.

New Game, Start by C.S. Poe has lovely characters, a great setting (NYC and a gamer  convention), and an easy flow to her story that sweeps you into the life of Edgar Royal, medieval scholar and reclusive gamer.  Not once did Edgar ever come across as anything less than authentic.  You believe in Edgar, crossed signals, his lack of self worth…and wish that everything will go Edgar’s way when he actually meets up with his hero, Walter.  Walter too is a terrific character and the combination works in every way as the geeky courtship builds towards a relationship.

I loved the feel of this story, it’s a lovely, quiet romp to the end and definitely one I recommend.

Cover art by Paul Richmond is the series Stocking Stuffer cover, full of humor and good cheer.

Sales Links:  Dreamspinner Press | Amazon

Book Details:

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2017 Advent Calendar collection Stocking Stuffers.

ebook, 38 pages
Published December 1st 2017 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN139781640803145
Edition Language English
setting New York City, New York (United States)

An Alisa Review: Raven (Elsewhere #2) by H.J. Perry

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Rating:  4 stars out of 5

There’s more to life than books.

Antisocial bookworm Caspian hopes to reconnect with nature and find his inner child when he takes on the task of exploring the woods around Beaumont. Or at least he’ll find a new place to curl up with his eReader.

There are birds.

After rescuing an injured bird who miraculously heals within minutes, at night Caspian has vivid and erotic dreams, which he doesn’t want to wake up from.

And there’s the Prince of Ravens.

Birds haunt him by day, and a particular man haunts his nights. The connection is far greater than Caspian can imagine…

Mate, and it’s for life.

From another world, the Raven Prince can take bird or human form, but he takes only one lover.

As a human of our land, it’s difficult for Caspian to understand soulmates, or to imagine forever, much less that their new love will survive it.

Can Caspian let go of the life he expected to find love with the man of his dreams?

This was a very nice story.  Caspian is looking forward to a break until he makes a decision of what he wants to do now that he is done with school.  Bran confuses Caspian and he isn’t sure what anything between them mean.

This story had a lot of talking in circles, but it was expected with how Hunter talked to Pip in the first book.  I could feel Caspian’s confusion when he couldn’t understand what was going on.  Even seeing the story through the Caspian’s eyes I could see Bran’s pain when Caspian didn’t understand his traditions.  I liked seeing Pip and Alex from the first story and look forward to the next in the series.

Cover art by Satyr Designs gives great visuals of the characters and follows the pattern for the series.

Sales Link: Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 164 pages

Published: December 4, 2017 by LoveLight Press

Edition Language: English

Series: Elsewhere #2

A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Eight Nights In December by Keira Andrews

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

This is a lovely holiday story featuring a family celebrating Hanukkah.  Lucas’s college roommate Sam is heading home for the holidays and Lucas is looking forward to peace and quiet in the dorms while the partying jock is away.  Orphaned after his father passed away in September, Lucas has nowhere to go—until Sam’s mother takes him by the hand and drags him home to New York with her. 

She deposits him in Sam’s little brother’s room, but when Lucas gets a look at his little brother, Nate, is evident that little is the last word he’d used to describe the sexy, glasses-wearing geek.  And Nate’s view of Lucas isn’t that bad either.  It’s not long until the two begin a fling and though Lucas starts off as an inexperienced virgin, by the time the eight days of Hanukkah are over, that’s no longer the case.  In fact, by the end of the eight days there’s more going on than a holiday fling, and neither Nate nor Lucas are looking forward to their separation after New Year’s Day. 

But Nate’s not out and Lucas promised his dad he’d go to his dad’s favorite college to study medicine.  Nate also isn’t happy with the career choice he’s following to please his own dad.  He really wants to be a photographer but he promised his dad he’d be a lawyer.  Can these two young men find their way to their hearts’ desires—including each other—after only eight days together? 

This is, as I said, a lovely story and for those who like sexy romps, this one will make your holiday stocking sizzle.  It’s also a sweet love story and just thing to brighten a gloomy day. 

~~~

Cover art by Dar Albert depicts head shots of two young men gazing fondly at each other in the top pane of the cover, the title and a Star of David in the center, and a night scene of New York City in the lower pane.  Bright and attractive, it suits the story perfectly.

Sales Link:  Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 100 pages
Published December 7th 2017 by KA Books
ISBN139781988260259
Edition Language English

Release Blitz – Beyond The Tunnel (The Wizard Shifter #1) by Dan Mitton (excerpt and giveaway)

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Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Exstasy 
 
Length: 79,777 words 
 
Blurb
 

What would you do if you rode into a mountain tunnel in North Carolina and then rode out into a different world? Adam Stephens is about to find out…


Adam Stephens is a man with a mission. It has been three years since they chopped that malignant brain tumor out of his head, and he is off on a solo motorcycle camping trip through the Appalachian Mountains.


When he rides into the Pine Mountain Tunnel in North Carolina and rides out into another realm—a realm that comes complete with a big sexy grizzly bear shifter, mages, and an evil sorcerer—he isn’t sure he isn’t lying in the tunnel after crashing his bike. Can such a world exist? Or is he dreaming? If he is dreaming…it sure is realistic.


Along the way, there will be some major hurdles to surpass including no indoor plumbing…and no coffee. A man needs some basic luxuries, correct?


Excerpt
 

“Fine, if it’ll get you off my damned back, I’ll take the cell phone. And you already know I’m taking my Kindle so I can read in those serene mountain campgrounds that I picked out along the way.” Adam roared, as he stomped down the hallway to get the phone from his bedroom.


“Oh, you mean those campgrounds in the bear infested forests, which you picked out without even seeing them?” George yelled down the hallway sarcastically. He had made it clear to Adam—repeatedly—that camping in a tent in the mountains, alone, was the dumbest idea he had ever heard of. “Oh, and don’t forget, you’re riding right by where they filmed Deliverance. Someone might just tell you that you have a pretty mouth.”


“I could get so lucky,” Adam said quietly as he walked back into the kitchen. “And as to the campgrounds, I’ve already got my sites picked out and pre-paid, so it will be an easy trip. Relax, I’ve already got my bike packed. I’ve double checked everything, and if there’s anything I forgot, it isn’t like there isn’t a Walmart store every twenty miles along the way. I can stop and buy extra supplies. I’m not going to be riding through the wilderness.


“For your part, Georgie…don’t forget to come over and feed my cat. Otherwise, poor Cooper will be dead before I get back. And this time don’t forget the cat box! When I went away for those few days last year, you didn’t scoop and it was practically liquefied when I got back. That was disgusting dude, disgusting.”


Twenty minutes later—George having been mollified—Adam climbed on his motorcycle to begin his epic journey from South Florida to the Quebec line in New Hampshire. He had his tent, his sleeping bag, and enough food for a few days. Now if didn’t rain, the trip would be fantastic.


Not quite three days into his trip, and Adam was riding through the mountains of North Carolina already, which was quite a feat on a motorcycle—if he did say so himself, especially on these back roads. In a car, he might have done the trip in one day, but on his bike, it was far more strenuous on his body. Better to ride safely than quickly, and besides the views were fantastic. The Blue Ridge Parkway was proving to be as beautiful as he’d heard, and at least, so far, he hadn’t seen any bears.


Camping the first night in Florida had almost been a washout, after riding through thunderstorms nearly the entire length of the state and having to set his tent up in the middle of a downpour. Then last night in that creepy deserted campground in Northern Georgia, with all its bear warning signs, was so cold. How it was possible to be in the thirties when it had been ninety when he left his house in Cape Coral was beyond his comprehension. He could only wonder what the coming night’s campsite would bring. He hoped they would at least have hot showers at this one. His shower that morning in Georgia, with only ice-cold water and a thirty-eight-fucking-degree breeze blowing in through a louvered stall wall, had almost killed him. His balls had retracted so far that he didn’t think they’d crawled back out of his body since. At least it had warmed up fast and was now somewhere pleasantly in the seventies with bright sunshine.


Sighting an exit sign ahead, Adam pulled off the Parkway and stopped at the combination rest area and information center. He needed to pee, and it would probably be smart to grab a physical Blue Ridge Parkway map. His map app on his smartphone kept trying to direct him off the Parkway to a much faster Interstate Highway option.


After using the rest room, Adam walked into the information center, picked up one of the free maps from the display by the door, and approached the cute bearded guy behind the counter. “Does this map show all the tunnels and campgrounds? I’m heading for Linville Falls tonight, and I’d like to keep track of where I am during the day.”


“It does, but man, I’m glad it’s you, not me. That’s a long way to go on this type of road in one day on a motorcycle. Good luck with that.”


Adam smiled and thanked him. Walking back outside, he took one last look around, decided he probably didn’t need to walk up the trail to the scenic overlook, and instead walked back to his bike. He put his helmet back on, climbed on the bike and headed back to the highway.


He had no idea that he wouldn’t be making the campground that day.


God, I love these. Adam’s spirit was flying as he roared into yet another of the stone tunnels along the route. This one, the Pine Mountain Tunnel, was supposedly the longest on the Parkway and it was even better than the previous ones. As he rode into the pitch-black darkness, his light glinted off the reflective lane markers along the center line. Just imagine how much stone is over my head right now…I wish this would go on for miles.


Adam pushed his acceleration up and zoomed through the darkness toward the light that he could now see at the other end. Within seconds he flew out…into a torrential rainstorm. What the fuck, it was just sunny!


Adam’s bike slammed into a huge mud puddle, splashing water up and all over him, effectively drenching him before the heavy rain even had time to get him wet. He slammed on his brakes and tried to come to a rapid stop. Instead, his large, heavy motorcycle slid sideways in the loose mud and the next thing he knew he was going down. His bike hit the ground on its right side and then stalled, leaving Adam lying on the ground with it. He groaned. Damn, that’s going to hurt later.

Author Bio

Daniel Mitton is not a statistic. When the doctors broke the news to him that he would be dead by the end of 2013 from brain cancer, he scoffed at them. He has proven them incorrect, and continues to prove them more incorrect every day.


He is now pursuing his lifelong dream of telling other people his stories in writing. His overactive imagination used to get him in trouble. It will be interesting to see what happens this time.


My Name Was Karl is his first self-published work, but he already has two other books in a queue somewhere at a publisher.


Daniel was born and raised in northern New Hampshire, but now lives in sunny Southwest Florida with his husband of nearly twenty-eight years. He totally doesn’t get why some people complain it is too hot in Florida!

 

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Cover Reveal for La Famiglia (A Men of Gilead Novel) by Deanna Wadsworth (excerpt)

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Title: La Famiglia
Series: A Men of Gilead Novel
Author: Deanna Wadsworth
Genre: M/M Romance Novel (standalone)
Release Date: January 23, 2018



Forrester Giordano comes from a huge, nosy Italian family, and with their homophobic jokes and slurs, he’s decided to stay in the closet. He finds respite in his bookstore in the quaint village of Gilead—where he has a huge crush on one of his customers, Kyle Benson.

Kyle is determined to live his dreams, and though life isn’t easy being deaf, one by one he’s making them come true. He’s scored a great job practicing law, bought a cute bungalow where he can finally have a big flower garden, and he has a dog he loves, Jasper. Now he just needs one thing to complete his happiness: a family of his own to make up for the one he never had.

Forrester and Kyle’s relationship starts off hot and heavy, and neither man can deny the depth of their connection. When Forrester’s little brother gets mixed up with their heroin-dealing cousin and his mother falls ill, Forrester has a decision to make—maybe the hardest of his life. For the first time, he’s found a man worth coming out for.

Unfortunately nothing ever goes according to plan with la famiglia.

 

 

 


So, Forrester.” Kyle said his name in a way that never ceased to send shockwaves down his back and straight to his cock. “How does one go about trading in books around here?”
Forrester pressed his groin closer to the back of the checkout counter, not wanting his thin khakis to reveal what Kyle’s voice did to him. He knew it wasn’t an accent anymore, but the soft way Kyle spoke lured him in like a siren’s song.
Since no one else waited to check out, Forrester took a moment to soak in those gorgeous hazel eyes, then smiled impishly. “First you have to bring them in.”
“That would be helpful.” Kyle’s generous mouth cracked a grin.
He tried his damnedest not to picture those downright kissable lips wrapped around his cock while he ran his fingers through Kyle’s sun-streaked hair.
He’d always had a thing for blonds.
He plucked up one of the flyers from the counter. Somehow he managed to sound professional, educated even, when he handed it over. “Our policy is we only take gently used books.”
“Mine are in great shape.”
“I bet they are,” Forrester drawled.
“They’re like new,” he insisted. “No folded corners, never dropped one in a tub either.”
“Good to hear. I hate it when people ruin a good book.” Dammit, now I’m picturing Kyle in a bathtub!
“Me too.” Kyle folded the flyer and tucked it into his pocket.
“For every book you trade in, we give 15 percent off the purchase of a new book or 25 percent off a used one. And for every three books, you get a free used book or half off a new one.”
Kyle flashed those pearly whites, making his eyes crinkle and his dimples deepen so much Forrester longed to flick his tongue inside them. “Guess I got some free books coming.”
“I guess you do,” he quipped. “Do you want to buy these today or wait till you do the trade?”
Kyle withdrew his card. “Nah, I’ll buy them now. I’ve been dying to see what happens since you got me hooked on this series. And Scott already signed this one.”
Forrester offered him a sideways smile. “I’ll just give you 15 percent off on good faith.”
“Gosh, you don’t have to do that.”
Good Lord, the guy said gosh. Could he be more adorable?
When Forrester noticed Holly watching them, he resisted the urge to stick his tongue out at her. Instead, he shrugged off Kyle’s modesty and entered the discount into his computer. “No problem. Just make sure you bring me some good stuff, capisci?”
“Will do. Thanks a lot.”
Forrester swiped his card, then offered Kyle another inviting smile. The one Ma called his suck-up smile. “Can I get you anything else? Answer any more of your questions?”
Kyle kept smiling. “No. You’ve been pretty thorough, as usual.”
“You sure?” he prompted, unable to stop flirting so shamelessly. “You don’t need to know anything else? What’s on the bestseller list? Today’s weather? The meaning of life?”
“Forty-two.”
Official report: Forrester was in love with Kyle Benson.
Or at least in serious lust.
His grin widened so big he swore his face might crack. “A Hitchhiker fan. I should’ve known.” He tore off the receipt and slid it forward for Kyle to sign.
“Hells yeah.” Kyle laughed.
Forrester bagged the books. “Receipt with you or in the bag?”
“Bag’s fine.” He accepted his purchases, then cleared his throat and fiddled with the bag. “All right, um, thank you, Forrester. Always a pleasure.” He extended a hand and Forrester took it, electric jolts running through his blood at the feel of those lightly calloused fingers.
“No problem,” he managed, not letting go.
Kyle kept his gaze locked on Forrester, blinking and glancing from his eyes to his mouth. Warming, Forrester ran his thumb across the back of his hand. He couldn’t believe his forwardness, but Kyle had some kind of tractor beam sucking him in. Powerless against its pull, he stroked the soft skin once more with a nervous, light touch, pulses of heat and desire stirring inside him.
Forrester let go and cleared his throat. “Um, Kyle?”
“Yeah?”
The phone rang, shattering the moment.
Sighing, he snagged it on the third ring. “Thank you for calling A Novel Idea. This is Forrester, how may I help you?”
“Hey, it’s me.”
Only real friends or family could answer a phone with an “it’s me.” Lucas Beale was the former. Though totally weird, and he hated sports of all kinds, Lucas was Forrester’s “boy best friend”—Holly having the honor of being his “girl best friend.” He didn’t know what he would do without either of them.
“Hey, Lucas, what’s up?” He tried not to sound annoyed at the telephone cockblock.
Kyle waved goodbye. “I guess I’ll see ya later, Forrester.”
“Can’t wait.”
“Can’t wait for what?” Lucas asked in confusion.
He covered the receiver, hoping he didn’t sound lame to Kyle. “I mean… uh, I can’t wait to read that book together?” His entire body froze in one breath of anticipation.
Kyle cocked his head to the side, then smiled. “Absolutely.”
Still grinning, Kyle turned and walked away.
Ignoring Lucas as he started talking again, Forrester watched Kyle’s spectacular ass as he headed to the door. A woman was coming in and, like a perfect gentleman, Kyle held the door for her. Outside, Kyle slid on and strapped his helmet. Then he threw his leg over and straddled the chrome-and-black Sportster parked out front.
I got something he can straddle and ride…. Forrester’s skin flushed all the way to his toes. Was Kyle a top or a bottom? Being versatile, he really didn’t care. As long as there was manly skin touching his, lots of kissing, and he got to come, Forrester was a happy camper. But the prospect of finding out what Kyle liked made his entire body warm.
He watched Kyle put his bike into gear and walk it back out of the space. As it did every time Kyle left, a deep ache settled in his stomach.
God, I just need to marry him.

Deanna Wadsworth might be a bestselling erotica author, but she leads a pretty vanilla life in Ohio with her wonderful husband and a couple adorable cocker spaniels. She has been spinning tales and penning stories since childhood, and her first erotic novella was published in 2010. She has served multiple board positions at her local RWA chapter and is the current President 2017 for Rainbow Romance Writers of America. When she isn’t writing books or brainstorming with friends, you can find her making people gorgeous in a beauty salon. She loves music and dancing, and can often be seen hanging out on the sandbar in the muddy Maumee River or chilling with her hubby and a cocktail in their basement bar. In between all that fun, Deanna cherishes the quiet times when she can let her wildly active imagination have the full run of her mind. Her fascination with people and the interworkings of their relationships have always inspired her to write romance with spice and love without boundaries.


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