A Jeri Review: A Summer Soundtrack for Falling in Love by Arden Powell

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Rating: 2.5 Stars out of 5

A new to me author that I wanted to try because of the premise. What was a decent premise and a good blurb got lost, though, with too many story lines and really ridiculous scenarios.

Kid heads to NYC to play music. He doesn’t have lofty goals. He is totally willing to be a studio musician. As long as he can play music for a living. With a cousin in the city he can stay with he is set. Except the cousin kind of bails on him. So with no place to go and very little money, he wanders to Central Park and starts playing.

Ridiculous scenario #1: famous musician needs a guitar player and just happens to be there
Ridiculous scenario #2: homeless musician has no idea who the famous musician is

Ok, ok. So maybe that was it and now the rest of the story can move forward. And it did, for the most part. For a while. Except Kris learning a whole song book in like 2 days. And each band member seeming to fit one of the letters in the rainbow of LGBTQ.

Then a whole other totally ridiculous plot line is introduced that was head shaking.

And then Kris’ sister is hired by the opening band as a drummer.

There’s a peacock.

Oh, and a budding romance between Kris and Rayne- the lead singer who discovered Kris in Central Park.

This could have been so much better without all of the various plot lines and unbelievable happenings. I gave myself a headache from rolling my eyes.

Definitely a throw away book for me.

Cover By: Shayne Leighton.   Red font makes the title hard to red, design is busy and not especially engaging.

Sales Links:  Riptide Publishing | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 318 pages
Published October 29th 2018 by Riptide Publishing
Original Title A Summer Soundtrack for Falling in Love
ISBN139781626498525
Edition LanguageEnglish

An Alisa Review: I’ve Been Careless With A Delicate Thing by Marina Vivancos

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Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Silas meets gorgeous, grumpy-looking Oscar at a bar. He’s never had sex with a guy, and what better place is there to find someone to pop that particular cherry?

He knows what he’s getting with the broad-shouldered, I-can-pummel-you-with-one-look Oscar: getting bent over a hard surface and satisfied until he’s blaspheming. Turns out, though, there’s a lot more to Oscar that meets the eyes. Needs that you’d never guess just by looking at him. Needs that Silas turns out to perfectly meet.

One night turns into two, turns into three, turns into a dozen. It’s just a little friends-with-benefits relationship with a dollop of kink on the side. No feelings involved, right?

Right. Because Silas is just so good at keeping his heart in check.

I really enjoyed this story.  Silas has never gotten the chance to explore his attraction to men and now newly single from a long relationship he is eager for the chance.  Oscar is quiet man and very reserved but will Silas be able to break through his shell.

I love how Silas and Oscar pretty much start a relationship together though they don’t talk about that aspect.  Silas makes sure they talk about what they want in bed and it helps to bring them closer together but everything else seems to be off the table.  I kinds wish that we would have seen these two together outside of Oscar’s apartment but for how their relationship really starts that makes sense.

I loved how open Silas is to being with Oscar and how much he is willing to push so that they can work everything out.  Oscar likes to make himself seem like he doesn’t need anyone and is scare that his wants make him weak.  But Silas is able to show him that it isn’t bad and can even make you feel better and they see how great they are together.

The cover art by Natasha Snow is really nice but I don’t feel it connected to the story.

Sales Link:Amazon US | Amazon UK

Book Details:

ebook, ~27,000 words

Published: October 22 2018

Edition Language: English

A Caryn Review: Earthly Pleasures by Sera Trevor

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Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars

It was hard for me to characterize this book – it’s a little bit fantasy, but definitely had some fairy tale vibes about it as well, probably because the setting made me think of 17th – 18th century France.  It turned out to be not quite what I expected…

Prince Paurick is the second son of the king of Alland.  He had no responsibilities and a large allowance, and his life was all about hedonism.  Dressing in the latest fashions, getting drunk on the best liquor, sleeping with the most beautiful men, and planning his new pleasure palace took up all of his thoughts and energy.  Nominally he was the ruler of Tuatha, but could never be bothered to even visit the backward, downtrodden country.  He avoided his father and his older brother, both of whom took their roles as rulers of Alland very seriously, as much as possible.

Paurick was therefore very surprised to receive a royal summons the morning after a typical night of debauchery.  When he arrived at his father’s castle, he was shocked to find that the high priestess of the Goddess had an important task for him – to save Tuatha from the famine that was causing mass starvation.  (There were a few pages of explanation about how the ruling family descended from the Goddess, and had special powers, blah, blah, but it felt like an afterthought the way it was thrown in just before the high priestess assigned her task).   Paurick’s first thought was that he would have to abandon plans for his pleasure palace, when the priestess told him that all he had to do to save the country was to copulate with one of her acolytes.  And just for a few months, until fertility was restored to the land, and he could even do it from the comfort of his regular palace instead of going to Tuatha.  Suddenly, this sacred task was starting to sound like a great idea to Paurick, especially when she stipulated that the chosen acolyte was male instead of female!

Until Brother Laurel stepped forward, and he was just plain ugly.

Brother Laurel was committed to the Goddess, and felt truly blessed by being allowed to serve Her in Her temple.  He was born Tuathan, but was brought to Alland basically as a slave when he was a child, and to him, being chosen as an acolyte was a miracle that saved him from what was likely to be a very short life of extreme misery.  Acolytes took vows of poverty, obedience, and chastity, although in this instance the chastity vow was temporarily lifted for the good of the country of Tuatha.  Laurel did not ask how copulating with Paurick was supposed to restore fertility to the land – he just did what his high priestess ordered him to do.  And if that meant several months of forced receptive anal intercourse from an arrogant, spoiled, obnoxious prince, well, it was for the good of the people, and it wasn’t like he hadn’t suffered before.  (BTW, although Laurel might have expected it, there is thankfully no rape or non-con/dub-con in this story)

The first half of the book follows the two men as they negotiate their way through this task – and although Paurick doesn’t treat it as sacred at all, he is at least not the monster than Laurel initially thought he was, and the men come to care for each other.  The temporary nature of the assignment seemed like a saving grace when they entered into it, but as the season progressed, they fell in love.  And in doing so, both men saw the best in each other, and wanted to emulate that in themselves.

For probably the first 30-40% of the book, I have to say I was not involved, not convinced of the friendship between Paurick and Laurel, much less that they really fell in love.  The Goddess magic seemed like an afterthought rather than essential to the storyline.  And it felt like Laurel’s character should have been a woman, and the author’s decision to make this about two men made no sense.  Fortunately, about two thirds of the way through of the book, things changed and it felt like this was a story for adults who had real conflicts – love vs duty, secular vs sacred – and both men grew up enough to see there was real evil and manipulation in the world, and they had to stand up and make sacrifices to improve it.  But then I got the impression that the author wrote herself into a corner, and so the resolution was rapid, deus ex machina, and left me mostly dissatisfied despite the HEA.

I could not find the artist for the cover, but I have to say that if I saw the cover and title without reading the blurb, I would have pegged it for regency erotica – probably hetero – and passed right over it.

 

Sales Links:  Amazon

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 164 pages
Expected publication: November 7th 2018
ASINB07GTXJDZN
Edition Language English

An Alisa Release Day Review: Trex or Treat by Tara Lain

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Rating:  4 stars out of 5

Josh Harris is all dad all the time. A busy college professor and devoted single father, Josh tries to be happy with only his son for company. But then Bradley “Trex” Trexler moves in across the street with his stepbrother, Bogo, and takes advantage of their empty home, making it into a haunted house for Halloween.

Josh’s son, Ernie, can’t wait to go, so Josh dresses up like a movie cowboy and saunters over. It’ll be the best Halloween of Ernie’s life, but there’s another sharpshooter roaming the dark corridors, and this one might have a special treat for Josh….

This was such a sweet story, but being a short there is just so far that the story can go and I don’t want to spoil it either.  Josh and Trex have great chemistry and I love that both of them don’t just want a one off.  They connect on a deeper level and even better have much more in common than Josh could ever hope for.  Seeing the story through Josh’s eyes didn’t really give us much of a chance to get to know Trex but he truly seemed to wear his heart on his sleeve and the ending gave these two the perfect opportunity to try building a life together.

The cover art by Kanaxa is great and is absolutely perfect for the story.

Sales Links: Dreamspinner Press | Amazon | B&N

Book Details:

ebook, 34 pages

Published: 2nd edition, October 31, 2018 by Dreamspinner Press

ISBN-13: 978-1-64405-131-3

Edition Language: English

Lonely Hearts ( A Novella Bundle ) by Posy Roberts Blog Tour (excerpt and giveaway)

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 Lonely Hearts Tour Banner

 Lonely Hearts

A Novella Bundle

Posy Roberts

M/M Romance

Release Date: 10.25.18

 lonely hearts ebook 4x6

BLURB

Stoic men, who believe they’re happy alone, find the world turned upside down when their perfect someone stumbles across their path. In four novellas, eight men encounter unique struggles on their way to their well-deserved happily ever after. 

Marc joins the Lonely Hearts chat room where men support men on their way to finding true love. He wants to believe that kind of love is possible for him, but his once-burned heart stops him from going all-in with anyone.

The chat group’s philosophy is, “Figure out how you keep screwing up your happily ever after. Once you know, you’re more likely to find the true thing.”

Skeptical as he is, Marc logs in and meets men in various degrees of getting there. At least he’s not alone. Luther truly loves his single life on the Bakken oil fields. William’s not sure he’ll ever measure up, let alone find someone he can be himself around. And Andrew still pines for a guy he hooked up with on a reenactment battlefield before he got blown up on a real one.

One by one they start dropping like flies. Flies drunk on love. And sooner than he expects, Marc’s luck starts changing thanks to these new friends.

Walk alongside these men as they find the men of their dreams and discover their happily ever afters.

101,000 Words | 396 pages | 8-9 hours to read

blue-collar | reluctant lovers | rural | bisexual | gay | meet-cute | fated lovers | love triangle | Halloween | white-collar | opposites attract | multicultural | coming out | second chance | first time | disability romance | meant to be | military | artist | world traveler | coming of age | long distance | pen pals | gay romance | contemporary | MM romance | lone wolf | alpha male

Stories included: Bent Arrow, Stroke of Luck, Momo, My Everything, and Love on a Battlefield.

Universal Amazon Link: http://getbook.at/LonelyHearts

Universal Buy Link: http://books2read.com/LoneHearts

Bookmark on BookBub

Add on Goodreads

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Lonely Hearts

EXCERPT

Marc logged into the chat room, unsure what he was getting into, but he’d been reassured by a friend (who was friends with the moderator) that this was a good group of guys. If nothing else, he’d get to know other queer men. If he was lucky, maybe they’d help him find a way to open up his heart to fall in love again. At least that’s how the group was described to him.

5 Members in Chat Room

Marc: Hey, I’m Marc. I’m new here, and the rules said I had to introduce myself. I’m bisexual but haven’t dated much since my ex-girlfriend cheated on me. Work has been my focus, but after three years, I’m lonely. It’s as plain as that. I’m just not sure how to trust someone again.

Hugo: Hi, Marc. I’m Hugo, the moderator. If I disappear all of a sudden, it’s because I’m waiting to chauffeur kids between gymnastics and yoga.

Marc: You have kids?

Hugo: They’re Kevin’s, my boyfriend’s kids. But who knows what the future holds. Anyway, I was in the same place as you not so long ago, with a cheating cheater who cheats. I had a string of shitty boyfriends, but cheating messed me up. Bad. I swore off men for a solid year, and it eventually paid off.

Marc: How did the time off help?

Hugo: I fixed my shit. Figured out what I kept doing wrong. Worked out my patterns.

Luther: Oh no, here he goes! Haha. Love you, H! Marc, H is all about fixing shit so you’re ready for love when it stumbles in your path.

Marc: Makes sense.

Luther: If you have a path filled with potential partners, I supposed it does. H is all about twuuuu wuv cuz he has it. All I can find out here on the oil fields is a hookup. Nothing else. Can’t be out.

Marc: That sucks.

Luther: It’s not all bad. I have a lot of sex and very few awkward conversations. Few conversations at all, to be honest.

William: So, Luth, do you save all the awkward conversations for when you come in here to chat? Stop scaring Marc off.

Luther: Ha. Ha. Okay, Mr. Serious, what have you done lately to make yourself available to the hot dudes who run around on the beaches half naked?

William: I bought a guy a drink at the club last weekend. Spent most of the night with him.

Luther: Before you went home alone?

William: Well, yes, but I had to work the next day.

Luther: LOL.

Andrew: Hi, Marc. Welcome. I’m pretty new here too. New to being fully out despite knowing I liked men for years. I’m still trying to figure out how all this works. Gay clubs are about all I’m capable of yet. If I go to a club, there’s no chance I’ll hit on a straight guy, at least. I’m a vet, and my PTSD and injuries make taking that risk of hitting on the wrong guy anxiety inducing. I distrust everyone, including my own brain and injured body.

Luther: And I’m the sole closet case here.

William: Not entirely. I’m not out at work. No one there has earned the right to know that about me yet. But my family knows.

Hugo: I’ve been out for ages, but I’m still not entirely open about my drag persona. That’s still need to know.

Marc: You do drag? What’s your drag name.

Hugo: Yep. Miss Cherri Pop! 😉

Marc: Where does everyone live? Or should I not ask that?

Luther: On the dusty oil fields of North Dakota, but there are tons of men to hook-up with here. No questions asked. No demands to kiss. Just how I like it!

William: Sunny California, though right now, I’d prefer rain.

Andrew: I’m in Texas, happy to be home after four years in the army.

Hugo: Minneapolis.

Marc: Me too! Minneapolis, that is. I gotta say, it’s nice chatting with some queer men. Everyone around me assumes I’m straight. And since I haven’t dated a man in ages, it’s like all my friends forgot I’m bi. But I’d really like to date a man again. I think if I date a woman, I’m bound to . . .  What’s the word? Put all my shit on her?

Hugo: Project?

Marc: Yeah. I’m gonna project my hurt on her cuz of my ex. So I’d really like to try something serious with a guy.

William: So, what are your greatest fears when thinking about falling in love?

Luther: Coming out. I know, I know. It won’t be as bad as I think it will be. But what if it is? I’ll lose everyone around me.

William: But you prefer being alone. Or so you’ve claimed, Luth.

Luther: Right. I push people away. Easier that way.

Marc: I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to trust again. And if I do, what if the guy I end up with assumes I’m cheating on him only because I’m bi?

Hugo: My Kevin is bisexual, and I never made those assumptions. We’re not all neanderthals who can’t appreciate subtlety.

Marc: True. There’s that lack of trust thing again.

William: I’m worried I’ll never measure up.

Luther: Says the man who probably has a dick the size of an eggplant.

William: . . .

William: I might. 😉

Luther: LOL. I knew it!

Hugo: If W & L weren’t thousands of miles away, I’d suggest you guys get a room and fuck to work out your sexual tension.

William: Not going to happen.

Luther: He’d probably want to marry me. 😉 I’m not settling down. I just want to fall in love. Big difference.

Andrew: I already know who I want to be in a relationship with. But I’m too boring for him.

William: You’re far from boring, Andrew.

Hugo: The only way you’ll know is if you take a chance. But get into a good headspace before that. Yes, I know, Luther, you’re sick of me saying that, but if I hadn’t fixed my shit before running into Kevin again seventeen years after our last kiss, I would’ve fucked it up that first night.

Marc: Thanks for this, guys. I’m glad I found you.

PosyRobertsLogo

Posy Roberts started reading romance when she was young, sneaking peeks at adult books long before she should’ve. Textbooks eventually replaced the novels, and for years she existed without reading for fun. When she finally picked up a romance two decades later, it was like slipping on a soft hoodie . . . that didn’t quite fit like it used to. She wanted something more.

She wanted to read about men falling in love with each other. She wanted to explore beyond the happily ever after and see characters navigate the unpredictability of life. So Posy sat down at her keyboard to write the books she wanted to read.

Her stories have been USA Today’s “Happily Ever After” Must-Reads and Rainbow Award finalists. When she’s not writing, she’s spending time with her family and friends and doing anything possible to get out of grocery shopping and cooking.

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All of Posy’s Links ~ https://linktr.ee/posyroberts

Posy’s Newsletter ~ http://bit.ly/PosyNews-LH

Social Media ~ @PosyRoberts

Website ~ http://posyroberts.com

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Cover Reveal for Havoc (Tattoos & Ties #1) by Kindle Alexander (excerpt and giveaway)

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Title: Havoc
Series: Tattoos & Ties #1
Author: Kindle Alexander
Genre: M/M MC Romance
Release Date: November 27, 2018
Cover Art: Reese Dante
Keyes Dixon’s life is challenging enough as a full patch member of the Disciples of Havoc Motorcycle Club but being a gay biker leaves him traveling down one tough road. With an abusive past and his vow to the club cementing his future, he doesn’t believe in love and steers clear of commitment. But a midnight ride leads to a chance meeting with a sexy pretty-boy in a wicked hot sports car that has him going down quicker than a Harley on ice. 
Cocky Assistant District Attorney Alec Pierce lives in the shadow of his politically connected family. A life of privilege doesn’t equal a life of love, a fact made obvious at every family gathering. Driven yet lonely, Alec yields to his family’s demands for his career path, hoping for the acceptance he craves. Until he meets a gorgeous biker who tips the scales in the favor of truth…and he can no longer live a lie.
Can two men from completely different worlds…and sides of the law…find common ground, or will all their desires only wreak Havoc?
The screen illuminated Alec’s face, and even though Keyes wasn’t religious, he swore he heard the angels sing in that moment… The sight stole Keyes’s breath. He came to a stop directly in front of the tempting driver. Resting both hands on his hips, he got lost just looking at this beautiful man. Keyes opened his mouth to speak. He could absolutely take care of this problem, but the words didn’t come. Instead, he stayed mesmerized by the most gorgeous guy he’d ever seen.
“I have roadside assistance. I just have to remember which app to use.”
 Keyes almost lost his bad boy composure when Alec distractedly glanced up from his phone and winked at him. Hold it together, Key. He finally got his head to stop spinning and all the cheesy porn music to quit playing on continuous loop in the background. Alec probably just had a twitch. Why would the guy be flirting with him? On the off chance Alec happened to be gay, Keyes obviously wasn’t his type if the passenger were anything to go by. There was nothing refined or delicate about Key.
Even with the neurons misfiring in Keyes’s brain, he managed to clear his throat and lower his gaze to the grass to help find some fucking perspective. “Where you headed?” Wait. That wasn’t the statement he’d planned to make.
“I live in McKinney. He lives in the Uptown area of Dallas,” Alec answered, reading the screen as he cocked his head toward his putout passenger.
“What’re you doin’ out here?” Keyes asked. McKinney was a long way from the current location and as different as two places could possibly be.
Alec gave a humorless laugh while briefly lifting his gaze from the screen. Curious light eyes pinned Keyes in place. He wasn’t sure he’d ever seen eyes that color. Keyes’s mouth watered, and his cock plumped, homing in on exactly what it wanted. “Google Maps said this was a detour. Hang on.” Alec lifted the phone to his ear. Keyes could hear a faint sound of a voice on the other end. “I’m on some side road in maybe South Dallas, perhaps even North Ellis County. Can you find my location?”
“Listen, I can take care of this. I own a tire shop that’s about fifteen minutes from here.” For the first time since the car had spun off the road, Alec truly looked at him. Their gazes connected for one maybe two heartbeats before Alec’s brow wrinkled and his eyes lowered. Keyes felt the weight of Alec’s stare as his eyes blatantly roamed the length of his body. Not only did his dick stand at attention but the damn thing attempted to parade down Main Street waving a rainbow-colored flag. A range of expressions crossed Alec’s handsome face until the hand holding the phone lowered and those extraordinary eyes were back on his. Had the guy noticed the impromptu party taking place in his pants? Keyes shifted his weight to his other foot.

“I’m Alec Pierce.”

Best Selling Author Kindle Alexander is an innovative writer, and a genre-crosser who writes classic fantasy, romance, suspense, and erotica in both the male/male and male/female genres. It’s always a surprise to see what’s coming next!
 
I live in the suburbs of Dallas where it’s true, the only thing bigger than an over active imagination, may be women’s hair!
Usually, I try for funny. Humor is a major part of my life – I love to laugh, and it seems to be the thing I do in most situations – regardless of the situation, but jokes are a tricky deal… I don’t want to offend anyone and jokes tend to offend. So instead I’m going to tell you about Kindle.
 
I tragically lost my sixteen year old daughter to a drunk driver. She had just been at home, it was early in the night and I heard the accident happen. I’ll never forget that moment. The sirens were immediate and something inside me just knew. I left my house, drove straight to the accident on nothing more than instinct. I got to be there when my little girl died – weirdly, I consider that a true gift from above. She didn’t have to be alone.
 
That time in my life was terrible. It’s everything you think it would be times about a billion. I love that kid. I loved being her mother and I loved watching her grow into this incredibly beautiful person, both inside and out. She was such a gift to me. To have it all ripped away so suddenly broke me.
 
Her name was Kindle. Honest to goodness – it was her name and she died a few weeks before Amazon released their brand new Kindle ereader. She had no idea it was coming out and she would have finally gotten her name on something! Try finding a ruler with the name Kindle on it.. It never happened.
 
Through the course of that crippling event I was lucky enough to begin to write with a dear friend in the fan fiction world of Facebook. She got me through those dark days with her unwavering support and friendship. There wasn’t a time she wasn’t there for me. Sometimes together and sometimes by myself, we built a world where Kindle lives and stands for peace, love and harmony. It’s its own kind of support group. I know without question I wouldn’t be here today without her.
 

Find out more by visiting http://www.kindlealexander.com or email me at kindle@kindlealexander.com

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Book Blitz and Giveaway for – Master Braden’s Houseboy (Irish Runaway #3) by Brina Brady

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Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK – Available Exclusive to Amazon and in Kindle Unlimited
 
Length: 275 pages
 
 
Irish Runaway Series
 
Book #1 – The Runaway Gypsy Boy – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #2 – Master Cleary’s Boys – Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Blurb
 

Reece was a guitar player and a singer at his grandfather’s pub in Dublin until someone betrays his secret. Once he was a happy and carefree young man, who finds himself on the streets and homeless.


He meets a handsome stranger, who gives him hope that the world still has people with compassion, until he discovers the man may have compassion, but he is no softie. Conner hires Reece as his houseboy.


Much to his shock, Conner Braden isn’t only a garda (Irish police officer), but he is also a Dom! The two men are complete opposites, but that doesn’t stop Reece from wanting to win his heart.


What happens when Master Braden blurs the lines between employer and Dom when Reece is his employee?


AUTHOR’S NOTE: This book contains mild BDSM elements including restraints, blindfolds, and spanking. While the story uses characters from The Irish Runaway Series, you can read this book as a standalone.

 
About Brina
 

I am from Huntington Beach, Ca. I taught various subjects at a Continuation High School in Los Angeles, California for 27 years. I obtained a Bachelor of Arts Degree in history, Secondary Social Science Credential and a Master’s Degree in Secondary Reading and Secondary Education from California State University, Long Beach. I also enrolled in some creative writing classes at UCLA. You can contact me at brinabrady@gmail.com.


Connect with Brina Brady here:


http://brinabrady.wordpress.com
http://brinabrady.blogspot.com
https://www.facebook.com/brina.brady.3
https://twitter.com/BrinaBrady
http://www.pinterest.com/brinabrady/
https://www.facebook.com/groups/146904702344189/

 

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Lonely Hearts, A Novella Bundle by Posy Roberts Blog Tour (excerpt and giveaway)

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 Lonely Hearts Tour Banner

 Lonely Hearts

A Novella Bundle

Posy Roberts

M/M Romance

Release Date: 10.25.18

 lonely hearts ebook 4x6

BLURB

Stoic men, who believe they’re happy alone, find the world turned upside down when their perfect someone stumbles across their path. In four novellas, eight men encounter unique struggles on their way to their well-deserved happily ever after. 

Marc joins the Lonely Hearts chat room where men support men on their way to finding true love. He wants to believe that kind of love is possible for him, but his once-burned heart stops him from going all-in with anyone.

The chat group’s philosophy is, “Figure out how you keep screwing up your happily ever after. Once you know, you’re more likely to find the true thing.”

Skeptical as he is, Marc logs in and meets men in various degrees of getting there. At least he’s not alone. Luther truly loves his single life on the Bakken oil fields. William’s not sure he’ll ever measure up, let alone find someone he can be himself around. And Andrew still pines for a guy he hooked up with on a reenactment battlefield before he got blown up on a real one.

One by one they start dropping like flies. Flies drunk on love. And sooner than he expects, Marc’s luck starts changing thanks to these new friends.

Walk alongside these men as they find the men of their dreams and discover their happily ever afters.

101,000 Words | 396 pages | 8-9 hours to read

blue-collar | reluctant lovers | rural | bisexual | gay | meet-cute | fated lovers | love triangle | Halloween | white-collar | opposites attract | multicultural | coming out | second chance | first time | disability romance | meant to be | military | artist | world traveler | coming of age | long distance | pen pals | gay romance | contemporary | MM romance | lone wolf | alpha male

Stories included: Bent Arrow, Stroke of Luck, Momo, My Everything, and Love on a Battlefield.

Universal Amazon Link: http://getbook.at/LonelyHearts

Universal Buy Link: http://books2read.com/LoneHearts

Bookmark on BookBub

Add on Goodreads

Lonely Hearts pinterest

Lonely Hearts

EXCERPT

Marc logged into the chat room, unsure what he was getting into, but he’d been reassured by a friend (who was friends with the moderator) that this was a good group of guys. If nothing else, he’d get to know other queer men. If he was lucky, maybe they’d help him find a way to open up his heart to fall in love again. At least that’s how the group was described to him.

5 Members in Chat Room

Marc: Hey, I’m Marc. I’m new here, and the rules said I had to introduce myself. I’m bisexual but haven’t dated much since my ex-girlfriend cheated on me. Work has been my focus, but after three years, I’m lonely. It’s as plain as that. I’m just not sure how to trust someone again.

Hugo: Hi, Marc. I’m Hugo, the moderator. If I disappear all of a sudden, it’s because I’m waiting to chauffeur kids between gymnastics and yoga.

Marc: You have kids?

Hugo: They’re Kevin’s, my boyfriend’s kids. But who knows what the future holds. Anyway, I was in the same place as you not so long ago, with a cheating cheater who cheats. I had a string of shitty boyfriends, but cheating messed me up. Bad. I swore off men for a solid year, and it eventually paid off.

Marc: How did the time off help?

Hugo: I fixed my shit. Figured out what I kept doing wrong. Worked out my patterns.

Luther: Oh no, here he goes! Haha. Love you, H! Marc, H is all about fixing shit so you’re ready for love when it stumbles in your path.

Marc: Makes sense.

Luther: If you have a path filled with potential partners, I supposed it does. H is all about twuuuu wuv cuz he has it. All I can find out here on the oil fields is a hookup. Nothing else. Can’t be out.

Marc: That sucks.

Luther: It’s not all bad. I have a lot of sex and very few awkward conversations. Few conversations at all, to be honest.

William: So, Luth, do you save all the awkward conversations for when you come in here to chat? Stop scaring Marc off.

Luther: Ha. Ha. Okay, Mr. Serious, what have you done lately to make yourself available to the hot dudes who run around on the beaches half naked?

William: I bought a guy a drink at the club last weekend. Spent most of the night with him.

Luther: Before you went home alone?

William: Well, yes, but I had to work the next day.

Luther: LOL.

Andrew: Hi, Marc. Welcome. I’m pretty new here too. New to being fully out despite knowing I liked men for years. I’m still trying to figure out how all this works. Gay clubs are about all I’m capable of yet. If I go to a club, there’s no chance I’ll hit on a straight guy, at least. I’m a vet, and my PTSD and injuries make taking that risk of hitting on the wrong guy anxiety inducing. I distrust everyone, including my own brain and injured body.

Luther: And I’m the sole closet case here.

William: Not entirely. I’m not out at work. No one there has earned the right to know that about me yet. But my family knows.

Hugo: I’ve been out for ages, but I’m still not entirely open about my drag persona. That’s still need to know.

Marc: You do drag? What’s your drag name.

Hugo: Yep. Miss Cherri Pop! 😉

Marc: Where does everyone live? Or should I not ask that?

Luther: On the dusty oil fields of North Dakota, but there are tons of men to hook-up with here. No questions asked. No demands to kiss. Just how I like it!

William: Sunny California, though right now, I’d prefer rain.

Andrew: I’m in Texas, happy to be home after four years in the army.

Hugo: Minneapolis.

Marc: Me too! Minneapolis, that is. I gotta say, it’s nice chatting with some queer men. Everyone around me assumes I’m straight. And since I haven’t dated a man in ages, it’s like all my friends forgot I’m bi. But I’d really like to date a man again. I think if I date a woman, I’m bound to . . .  What’s the word? Put all my shit on her?

Hugo: Project?

Marc: Yeah. I’m gonna project my hurt on her cuz of my ex. So I’d really like to try something serious with a guy.

William: So, what are your greatest fears when thinking about falling in love?

Luther: Coming out. I know, I know. It won’t be as bad as I think it will be. But what if it is? I’ll lose everyone around me.

William: But you prefer being alone. Or so you’ve claimed, Luth.

Luther: Right. I push people away. Easier that way.

Marc: I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to trust again. And if I do, what if the guy I end up with assumes I’m cheating on him only because I’m bi?

Hugo: My Kevin is bisexual, and I never made those assumptions. We’re not all neanderthals who can’t appreciate subtlety.

Marc: True. There’s that lack of trust thing again.

William: I’m worried I’ll never measure up.

Luther: Says the man who probably has a dick the size of an eggplant.

William: . . .

William: I might. 😉

Luther: LOL. I knew it!

Hugo: If W & L weren’t thousands of miles away, I’d suggest you guys get a room and fuck to work out your sexual tension.

William: Not going to happen.

Luther: He’d probably want to marry me. 😉 I’m not settling down. I just want to fall in love. Big difference.

Andrew: I already know who I want to be in a relationship with. But I’m too boring for him.

William: You’re far from boring, Andrew.

Hugo: The only way you’ll know is if you take a chance. But get into a good headspace before that. Yes, I know, Luther, you’re sick of me saying that, but if I hadn’t fixed my shit before running into Kevin again seventeen years after our last kiss, I would’ve fucked it up that first night.

Marc: Thanks for this, guys. I’m glad I found you.

PosyRobertsLogo

Posy Roberts started reading romance when she was young, sneaking peeks at adult books long before she should’ve. Textbooks eventually replaced the novels, and for years she existed without reading for fun. When she finally picked up a romance two decades later, it was like slipping on a soft hoodie . . . that didn’t quite fit like it used to. She wanted something more.

She wanted to read about men falling in love with each other. She wanted to explore beyond the happily ever after and see characters navigate the unpredictability of life. So Posy sat down at her keyboard to write the books she wanted to read.

Her stories have been USA Today’s “Happily Ever After” Must-Reads and Rainbow Award finalists. When she’s not writing, she’s spending time with her family and friends and doing anything possible to get out of grocery shopping and cooking.

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Review Tour for I’ve Been Careless With A Delicate Thing by Marina Vivancos (excerpt and giveaway)

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Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK  – Available exclusive to Amazon and on Kindle Unlimited
 
Length: 27,000 words approx.
 
Cover Design: Natasha Snow
 
Blurb
 

Silas meets gorgeous, grumpy-looking Oscar at a bar. He’s never had sex with a guy, and what better place is there to find someone to pop that particular cherry?



He knows what he’s getting with the broad-shouldered, I-can-pummel-you-with-one-look Oscar: getting bent over a hard surface and satisfied until he’s blaspheming. Turns out, though, there’s a lot more to Oscar that meets the eyes. Needs that you’d never guess just by looking at him. Needs that Silas turns out to perfectly meet.


One night turns into two, turns into three, turns into a dozen. It’s just a little friends-with-benefits relationship with a dollop of kink on the side. No feelings involved, right?


Right. Because Silas is just so good at keeping his heart in check.


This is an erotic ~27,000 word novella. Expect plentiful sex scenes with a friends-with-benefits (yeah, right), soft Dom/sub relationship.
 
Excerpt
 

“You look like you’re having fun,” Silas said, peering at Oscar whilst the other two leaned towards each other, falling into conversation. Oscar raised his eyebrows a little, and the clear sarcasm in the move made Silas grin.


Maybe this wouldn’t be so bad.


“Let me guess. You dragged Johnny here to get your dance on, didn’t you? ‘I need to shake my thang’, you wailed, and now here you are, crying on the inside because they’re playing a Madonna remix and this is your jam.” He perched his chin on the palm of his hand, looking at Oscar through his eyelashes.


“My thang,” Oscar repeated, not bothering with a question mark. His voice was deep and everything you would want to come out of a face that looked like it could be used as a cornerstone for a gothic church.


“Yeah, your thang. Your badonkadonk. Your caboose. Your derriere. Your full moon rising. Your juicy double.”


“Are you done?”


“Your all that junk inside your trunk.”


“What are you drinking, exactly?”


“Why? You wanna buy me another?”


“I was actually planning on telling the bartender to cut you off.”


Silas grinned at him for a moment before knocking back his drink. “Let’s dance,” he ordered.


“I don’t dance.”


“Sure you do, big guy.”

 

Read Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words’ review here. We definitely recommend it.
Author Bio
 

When Marina was a child she couldn’t sleep. Night after dissolving night she just couldn’t sleep. Nothing much worked – until she started making up stories in her head. Suddenly, the transition into unconsciousness was a smooth dive into calm waters.


Marina is currently in a period of sleepless upheaval, and she hopes writing down the stories in her head will cast the same spell it did decades ago.


Marina hopes to write in a variety of romance sub-genres, from contemporary to supernatural to sci-fi. Her style, however, tends to focus on character-centred stories that explore different facets of the human experience, such as mental health. She also enjoys writing explicit, drawn-out sex scenes, so expect those to be a prominent feature of her stories.


Marina tends to keep to herself unless prompted, so don’t be shy in approaching her!

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New Release Blitz for The Fruit of the Poisonous Tree (Stoker & Bash #2) by Selina Kray (excerpt and giveaway)

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Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Length: 100,000 words approx.
 
Cover Design: Tiferet Design
 
Stoker & Bash Series
 
Book #1 – The Fangs Of Scavo – Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Blurb
 

When will She open Rebecca Northcote’s box?

Finding lost poodles and retrieving stolen baubles is not how DI Tim Stoker envisioned his partnership with his lover, Hieronymus Bash. So when the police commissioner’s son goes missing, he’s determined to help, no matter what secrets he has to keep, or from whom.



When a family member is kidnapped, Hiero moves heaven and earth to rescue them. Even if that means infiltrating the Daughters of Eden, a cult of wealthy widows devoted to the teachings of Rebecca Northcote and the mysterious contents of her box. The Daughters’ goodwill toward London’s fallen women has given them a saintly reputation, but Hiero has a nose for sniffing out a fraud. He will need to draw on some divine inspiration to rattle the pious Daughters.

Like weeds gnarling the roots of Eden’s fabled tree, Tim and Hiero’s cases intertwine. Serpents, secrets, and echoes from Hiero’s past lurk behind every branch. Giving in to temptation could bind them closer together—or sever their partnership forever. 

 
Excerpt


When will She open Rebecca Northcote’s box?


Hieronymus Bash contemplated the question posed by the long, red-lettered banner that blazoned over the otherwise quaint fruit and vegetable stall. A sharp tug of the arm from Callie, his ward, brought him to heel. He’d already been struggling to match her brisk pace, having been dragged from his early afternoon repose in the cozy climes of his study into, of all things, the sunshine, or what passed for it on this weak-tea day.


Rays of piss-yellow sun trickled down over the city, tinting the fumes that oozed up from the Thames. Clouds of smog blurred the distant Albert Bridge into an impressionist’s nightmare. A growing crowd choked the small stage erected just before the river’s edge, scuttling in from both directions of Cheyne Walk like ants over a carcass. A bald man with a white mustache that flapped out to his ears checked his pocket watch for the fourth time since Hiero and his companions descended from their carriage.


At the far end of the stage, a squad of low-rank militia struggled to keep a path clear for the Duke of Edinburgh and his bride, Grand Duchess Maria Alexandrovna of Russia, only beloved daughter of Tsar Alexander II. The newlyweds were, in the timeless tradition of royals everywhere, unfashionably late to the opening of the Chelsea Embankment, the third and final stage of the sewage system that had transformed London’s riverside.


“Look, it’s Bazalgette!” Callie tugged him forward, doing a fine impression of an excitable hound.


“While I admire your enthusiasm, I do wonder if it’s not a tad misplaced.”


Callie scoffed. “Only you would prefer the arrival of some dippy duke over the architect of this entire endeavor.” She threw her free arm out wide. “Can you not spare a moment to admire this feat of engineering? In the place of muddy banks, pavement has been laid, a fence with lampposts erected, with gardens and greenery to come. And running beneath it, the waste of London, and soon an underground train! How can you be so trout-mouthed in the face of such marvels?”


“Not your most persuasive argument, comparing the face that dropped a thousand trousers to a fishmonger’s wares.”


Callie sighed, relinquishing his arm to chase after her muttonchopped idol. Hiero watched her go, marveling at how much she resembled her Uncle Apollo, Hiero’s long-deceased lover who had charged him with her care in character and spirit. Theirs was an unconventional household, where the lady moonlighted as a detective, the servants were part of the family, and the lord of the manor—Hiero himself—was neither a lord nor owned the manor.


“Come now.” Han, his friend and self-appointed keeper, fell into step beside him. The rhythmic taps of his lotus-headed walking stick slowed their pace to a stroll. “You’re no longer catch of the day with Mr. Stoker about.”


“Perhaps if he were about, someone would defend my honor.” Hiero bristled at the mention of his fair-weather paramour, Timothy Kipling Stoker, a detective inspector with Scotland Yard who shadowed them when there was a mystery to solve but otherwise preoccupied himself with… well, finding them another mystery. His dedication to duty exasperated.


“Not likely.”


“No, I rather thought not.” Hiero pressed a lavender handkerchief to his mouth and nose. Mr. Bazalgette’s innovations would have to work much harder to filter out nearly a millennia of filth, the river being a cesspit into which the city had poured every conceivable kind of rubbish, from human to animal to otherwise. A place where sins had been cast off and bodies buried. A few of Hiero’s personal acquaintance.


“Where has your Mr. Stoker taken himself off to this—” Han considered the urinal murk of the embankment and found himself at a loss of an adjective. “—afternoon?”


“I do not presume to know what impulses rule that man.”


“And yet you are the one who rides his… coattails.”


“Only when he deigns to undress for the occasion. Otherwise…” Hiero huffed, his mood irretrievably spoilt by this line of conversation. “I cannot think where I’ve gone wrong with him.”


“No?” Han evidenced something close to a smirk. “It wouldn’t have something to do with meddling in his work affairs, compromising his relationship with his superiors, forcing him into our fellowship, risking everything he holds dear, and then sharing nothing of consequence about yourself, now would it?”


Hiero peered at him out of the corner of his eye. “Nothing of the sort, I’m sure.”


“Ah. Well, then, it is a mystery.”


“Coo-coo! Mr. Han!” a voice trilled at them from behind.


With a pair of heavy sighs, they turned to heed an all-too-familiar call. A hand waiving a white handkerchief fluttered up and down amidst a dense crowd. A grunt from Han parted the sea of surging revelers to reveal Shahida Kala, the latest of Hiero’s charity cases, hopping with the vigor of a spring hare. Her compact figure contained a carnival of personality.


The instant this bright light had beamed into his study on the arm of her father—who served under Apollo in Her Majesty’s Navy—Hiero recognized her for one of the rare people who could steal his spotlight. So he had relegated her to the least enviable position in the household, that of nurse to Mrs. Lillian Pankhurst, Callie’s permanently indisposed mother. But the long days of attic dwelling and reading Richardson’s Pamela ad nauseam had not snuffed a single spark.


Instead Lillian had transformed from bed-ridden depressive into a semifunctional member of the family. Every morning she and Shahida took a two-hour stroll. They cultivated a rooftop garden. Shahida had imposed an afternoon tea regimen on their household, always leading the conversation as Hiero, Callie, and Han plotted ways to return to their preferred solitary occupations. Dinners were always a family affair, but Shahida’s insistence on more healthful, nourishing fare that conformed to Lillian’s new diet had Minnie, their cook, weekly threatening to resign. Callie was the only other member of the household resistant to her charms.


Even Han, cynical, monkish, seen-it-all Han, danced to whichever melody she played. Hiero watched as he bounded over to her, biting his lip at the comical sight of a surly giant bowing to the whims of a pretty imp, but also to keep from emitting a growl of frustration. He glanced back to search for Callie, but the crowd had swallowed her. By now she’d likely clawed her way to the front of the stage and barked questions at a baffled, bewhiskered Mr. Bazalgette, which Hiero thought should be his formal title.


Schooling his features, he joined Han and Shahida’s conversation in medias res and was somewhat aghast to discover them talking about produce.


“… the plumpest, juiciest berries. Artichokes the size of a fist. Fat aubergines and cabbages and cauliflowers, and cucumbers as long as…” Shahida pressed two fingers to her mouth. Hiero didn’t miss how her eyes flickered down. “Well.”


Shameless, that was the trouble. As if she’d snipped the best pages from his playbook and then had the temerity to improve on his notes.


Han chuckled. Chuckled! Hiero hadn’t seen his friend so much as shrug in all the time he’d known him.


“A religious order, you say?” Han asked.


“The Daughters of Eden.” Shahida leaned in, gave him her most conspiratorial smirk. “And I think they might be.” She didn’t even have the grace to straighten when she spotted Hiero. “Oh, Mr. Bash! Mrs. Pankhurst and I don’t mean to spoil your fun. But if you wouldn’t mind, we’ll stay here for a while. We’ve discovered the most—”


“Impressive cucumbers. So I heard.”


“Mrs. Pankhurst is just beside herself. We’ve big ideas for our garden, but this…”


Hiero was unmoved. “And what is it you want?”


“We’ve done our third crate and could fill two more. The crowd is bit much for Mrs. Pankhurst, so I thought Mr. Han might take us back to Berkeley Square? We’ll send the carriage back for you.”


“As it is my carriage, I rather think it will return for me regardless.”


That got her attention. “Of course. If you’d like us to stay—”


“Let us see these berries from heaven.” With a sweep of his hand, Hiero directed them back toward the stall that had earlier piqued his interest. “Their Majesties will wait upon our leisure.”


A long line of enterprising vendors hawked their wares along the edge of Cheyne Walk, hoping to entice royal watchers to purchase a bit of refinement for their life. One stall lined up its dainty little bottles of oils and perfumes like Russian nesting dolls. A mini royal portrait gallery sold likenesses of Queen Victoria, Prince Albert, and their progeny in a variety of poses. The gentleman scooping iced lollies for the children had his work cut out for him on such a tepid day, Hiero thought. The pub with a street-side stand offering hot tea and cider already did brisk business. A few watercress girls fought against the crowd’s undertow, but their wares looked shriveled as seaweed compared to the glorious bushels of the Daughters of Eden.


Even Hiero had to admit, upon inspection, the quality of their produce astounded. Fat and luscious, their fruit allured like the bosom of an opera diva, ready to smother and enthrall. Their vegetable stalks evidenced a virility that would put most molly-houses out of business. Little wonder their customers meandered around the baskets like lovestruck swains. Their bounty conjured images of orgies culinary and carnal. Hiero didn’t doubt there were more than a few serpents lurking about this tiny Eden, eager to defile a peach or two.


All of this was overseen by a trio of women dressed in immaculate white uniforms that somehow defied the city’s grime. Hiero drifted away from his companions to better observe these wyrd sisters. The tallest was also the least remarkable, a stout but cheery woman with farm-worn hands and hard-earned streaks of gray in her brown hair. She milled through the customers, answering questions and nudging reluctant buyers toward the register.


A skittish dove of a girl dutifully kept the ledger and the cash box, cooing her thanks before slipping some sort of pamphlet into people’s baskets. Her crinkly hair had been woven into two winglike braids that perfectly framed her heart-shaped face. A sprinkling of dark freckles contrasted with her pale-brown skin, all but disappearing when she blushed.


Which she did whenever the third sister glanced her way. “Willowy” did not do this petite, flopsy woman justice. A willow branch would look as leathery and stiff as a whip compared to her wispiness. Near-translucent skin and stringy cornsilk hair completed the otherworldly effect. Hiero almost questioned whether she was really there, such was the nothing of her regard. She appeared to have no occupation other than to pose under the sign in a demure attitude. The crowds gave her a wide berth, and little wonder. Nobody wanted to mingle with a possessed scarecrow.


Except possibly meddlesome not-detectives stuck on a boring outing with friends who had abandoned him for some phallic parsnips and a walrus architect.


Just as Hiero made to pounce, the waif leapt as if lightning struck. Eyes ravenous, mouth agape, hair billowing in an invisible breeze, she stared into the buzzing hive of customers. Transformed in an instant from trinket to spear, her astonishment gave color to her cheeks and heft to her bearing. She appeared somehow taller, bolder, a colossal spirit crammed into a compact package: a genie unleashed from its lamp.


All the better to bedazzle you with, my dear, Hiero thought.


Hieronymus Bash, professional cynic, knew a performance when he saw one. He read again the red sign that screamed above her head: When will She open Rebecca Northcote’s box? But there was no box he could see, and if this woodland sprite was Mrs. Northcote, he’d eat Han’s walking stick. These Daughters had lured in quite a crowd with their sensuous produce. Was she the serpent come to tempt them? And if so, to what end?


Hiero shuttered his natural radiance to watch the spectacle unfold. The pale sister glided, arms outstretched, into the maze of crates, eyes fixed on her prey. Hiero hissed under his breath when she stopped at Lillian Pankhurst. In a state of docile confusion at the best of times, Lillian continued sorting out a mess of string beans, oblivious to this starry-eyed suitor. Han, ever protective, moved to Lillian’s side just as the sister shrieked…


“Daughter! You are found!”


The woman at the ledger jumped to her feet. “Juliet?”


“I’ve heard your spirit call to us these long nights, and now you have come home!” Juliet continued at eardrum-splitting pitch, making herself heard to all in the vicinity and probably those across the Thames. “Welcome, Daughter, into Her grace and light! Welcome home!” She hugged a startled Lillian with impressive fervor for one so slender. Lillian, looking to Shahida for a cue, patted her on the back.


A frowning Han caught his gaze from across the way, but Hiero signaled he would play Polonius behind the curtain. Hopefully without the knife in his gut.


“Don’t fear, Daughter. You are among friends,” Juliet nattered on. “We have come to shepherd Her back to Eden through our good works, and, by your pallid cheeks and trembling hands, I can see that you are eager to play a part.”


“Oi!” Shahida hollered, shoving her way between Juliet and Lillian. “Mrs. Pankhurst gets three square a day, and her arthritis is much improved. I dare anyone here to say otherwise.”


“But her spirit, dear girl, droops like a flower too long out of the sun.” Juliet backed away a step to address the customers, every one of which stood rapt. “She knows how this frail woman has struggled. She has heard her prayers and her anguish. She has shone Her glorious light into her, lit her like a beacon for her sisters to find. She is a Daughter, called upon to continue Her good work and bring about a second Eden!”


Shahida let out a trill of laughter three octaves too high. It effectively pierced the balloon of hot air Juliet had been huffing and puffing.


“Angel with a flaming sword you’re not, ma’am. Sorry.” Shahida locked an arm around Lillian. “Stick to the fruit and veg.” A pointed look directed Han to escort their charge away.


“But I haven’t finished the beans…” Lillian muttered as they disappeared into the gaggle of onlookers.


“Shame!” Juliet bellowed, beseeching the yellow sky. “Shame! It is the burden of womankind.” The customers moved into the space vacated by his friends, and Hiero followed, curious as to how she would spin such a public defeat. “The prophet Rebecca Northcote warned against it in her great bible, The Coming of the Holiest Spirit. Too often we ladies wait upon the actions of others. Are made to feel shame and guilt and worthless when we do act. Allow others to lead us astray, away from the truth in our hearts. We pay the price for the sins of our fathers and brothers and husbands. But She… oh, She is coming to deliver us from these injustices, from our fears and torments. As our Holy Mother Rebecca divined, if we join together, Daughters, and build the garden, She will come to save us all. She will gift us with her light!”


“Amen!” the ledger-keeper cried, having abandoned her post to shove pamphlets into the hands of any who would take them.


“Thank you, Mother!” the other sister seconded, lifting a basket of golden pears for all to see.


Juliet scanned the crowd. “You reap of the bounty we offer, but you do not know of how we labor in Her name. To prepare for Her coming, our prophet Rebecca chose each of Her Daughters with care. And though a shame-filled few will deny Her, everyone is welcome to hear Her message and to contribute however they can.” Hiero swallowed a snicker as she gestured to the donation tin. So transparent. “If you are committed to peace and prosperity, if you would see heaven retake the Earth, then I invite you to heed our prophet Rebecca’s call. And She will shine Her light upon you for all the days of your life.”


Juliet seemed to resist taking a bow, but only just. She gave each customer a final angelic smile, then returned to her perch beneath the red sign. A few of the curious chased her with questions; a ragdoll sag and a vacant stare shut them out. Instead the ledger-keeper, who introduced herself as Sister Nora, gathered them around the donation tin before addressing any queries.


“And?” Han appeared beside him, sudden as Banquo’s ghost. “Showstopper or second-rate?”


Hiero rubbed a thumb over his knuckles. “Better than a pair of poncy royals cutting a ribbon, but only just.”


“Fit for a return engagement?”


“Perhaps. Their setup is commonplace, but she does have a certain je ne sais quoi.”


“Enough to en savoir plus?”


“Time will tell. You know how religion turns my stomach. But their focus on Lillian was…”


“Agreed. That Sister Juliet read her too easily.”


Hiero nodded. “Could have been instinct.”


“Or she saw a mark.”


They shared a look weighted by their years of friendship and experience, a partnership of equals who knew, without another word, how to protect their own.


About The Author


Selina Kray is the nom de plume of an author and English editor. Professionally she has covered all the artsy-fartsy bases, having worked in a bookstore, at a cinema, in children’s television, and in television distribution, up to her latest incarnation as a subtitle editor and grammar nerd (though she may have always been a grammar nerd). A self-proclaimed geek and pop culture junkie who sometimes manages to pry herself away from the review sites and gossip blogs to write fiction of her own, she is a voracious consumer of art with both a capital and lowercase A.


Selina’s aim is to write genre-spanning romances with intricate plots, complex characters, and lots of heart. Whether she has achieved this goal is for you, gentle readers, to decide. At present she is hard at work on future novels at home in Montreal, Quebec, with her wee corgi serving as both foot warmer and in-house critic.


If you’re interested in receiving Selina’s newsletter and being the first to know when new books are released, plus getting sneak peeks at upcoming novels, please sign up at her website: www.selinakray.net

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