An Alisa Review: The Acrobat (Blood Ties Book 1) by Agnes Moon and Kevan Houser (Translator)

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Rating:  4 stars out of 5

 

The Acrobat is a professional thief with dozens of burglaries to his credit, but when he finds himself trapped in the enormous abode of a mysterious man, as seductive as he is lethal, he realizes that the police might not be the worst of evils. Vincent de Saint-Bonnet is incredibly rich, with many hidden secrets, and little will to live. A foul-mouthed little thief with magnificent blue eyes is just what he needs to bring some light back to his gray, long-drawn-out existence.

 

A thief looking for a valuable dagger, an antique dealer with hundreds of years under his belt, for whom the weapon represents an object of . . . inestimable value. Each man has a precise goal and nothing will stop him from reaching it. Not even the incredible attraction that grips them, pulling them into a duel, one fought with lies and seduction.

 

This is a wonderful story.  The Acrobat has been taking care of himself and a friend for years but when Vincent wants to keep him he doesn’t know if he should stay because of how he feels or run.  Vincent has been looking for his soul mate for a long time and is amazed when the foul-mouthed little thief throws his carefully balanced world off kilter.

 

Liam and Vincent can’t deny their attraction for each other but continue to keep secrets that hurt their relationship.  Vincent isn’t sure that he can ever forgive Liam for his betrayal but he can’t stop caring for him.

 

This book was originally written in Italian but translated by Kevin Houser and he did a great job.  The book flowed well without the choppy feeling or odd words that I have often seen in other translations.

 

This story was told from both characters’ points of view which allowed the reader to know what they were both thinking and the kinds of things they were scared to share.  Liam doesn’t know how to really trust someone and despite his instincts towards Vincent he easily assumes the worst and runs all while his heart is breaking.  Vincent is overjoyed to have Liam in his life but past mistakes and assumptions make it hard for him to forgive and see what is really going on.  I hope the series continues as indicated and I can’t wait to read about Boris and Mal.

 

The cover art is nice and gives good visuals of the main characters.

 

Sales Link: Amazon

 

Book Details:

ebook, 209 pages

Published: February 19, 2017

Edition Language: English

Series: Blood Ties #1

A Jeri Release Day Review: Darkest Hour Before Dawn (THIRDS #9) by Charlie Cochet

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

Book 9 of the THIRDS series takes us away from not only the usual main characters of Dex and Sloan, but also out of their team Destructive Delta. This installment involves Sebastian Hobbs- older brother of Hobbs- and Hudson, the medical examiner at THIRDS HQ.

Seb and Hudson had been a couple. Going so far as to have Seb mark Hudson. But when a child dies while out on a call, they blame themselves. Ignoring the pull of their union, they tip toe around each other for years. But Seb is tasked with watching out for Hudson because the unseen enemy has been keeping tabs on him.

Seb and Hudson have always been great supporting players in the THIRDS universe. Every fan I know wanted them to get their own book and work toward their happily ever after. This book really made the wait worth it.

We still see “our” guys, Dex, Sloan and the crew- but the focus really is on Seb and Hudson. Not only seeing them together, but seeing Hudson with the Hobbs family. Before the tragedy that tore them apart, Hudson was fully ingrained with the Felids.

And just when you think it is all sweet and happy and rainbows…….BAM! She does it again. I won’t say what. But I will say I texted another reviewer who had read it before me practically screaming my question at her. She laughed at me. Keep reading, she said. Like stopping was an option.

Seb is so, so, SO sweet. I just love him. And even though it was Hudson who kept them apart, you really understand why.

A lot happens in this book. There is more introduction to the new bad guys. Thank goodness for her glossary at the beginning!

And the ending. The ending is just perfect.

Cover Artist: L.C. Chase.  Cover works for the story and branding the series.

Sales Link

 DSP eBook | DSP Paperback | Amazon | iBooks | Kobo | Barnes & Noble

Book Details:

ebook, 224 pages
Expected publication: April 25th 2017 by Dreamspinner Press
Original TitleDarkest Hour Before Dawn
ISBN 1635336090 (ISBN13: 9781635336092)
Edition LanguageEnglish
Series THIRDS #9

An Alisa Audiobook Review: The Necromancer’s Dance (The Beacon Hill Sorcerer #1) by S.J. Himes and Joel Leslie (Narrator)

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Rating: 3.5 out of  5 stars
In a world where magic is real and evil walks amongst humanity, a young sorcerer is beset upon by enemies, both old and new. Angelus Salvatore is the only necromancer in all of Boston, and his name is whispered warily by the undead and fellow sorcerers alike. He and his brother Isaac are the lone survivors of an attack by an army of the undead, in which Angel used a spell so powerful it forever marked his place in history. Now, years later, Angel struggles to balance his career as a teacher of the higher magical arts, his role as big brother, and a tenuous relationship with an Elder vampire from the local clan. When his brother’s boyfriend is used as a pawn in a mysterious plot to draw Angel out, Angel is once again pulled back into the old hostilities that fueled the Blood Wars and led to his family’s death.

Leaning on others for help is something Angel cannot do, and while he searches for clues into who may be targeting him and his brother, Angel finds his heart steadily growing occupied with Simeon, Elder and vampire. Dealing with death magic and vampires on a daily basis may leave Angel jaded when it comes to life and staying that way, but the more time he spends fending off the ancient vampire’s attention and affections, the more he realizes he wants to give in.

Can Angel find out who wants him dead, and keep his heart safe in the process? How can he fall for a vampire, when his whole family was torn apart by an army of the undead?

Death stalks the streets of Boston’s historic Beacon Hill….and there is no one more suited to battle against death than a necromancer.
This was a new author for me and I was pleased with this.  It is a urban fantasy type story with an interesting world.  I felt the author did a nice job setting the stage of this world without overwhelming the reader with too many details.  The story revolves around someone trying to kill Angel and his search for who the bad guy is.  A portion of the story is about the romance between Angel and Simeon, one of the local vampire leaders.
At first the romance seemed a bit abrupt because while they’d known each other for a few years prior to the start of the story.  It almost felt like the romance just happens out of the blue.  As the story goes on we’re given an explanation as to why that happened the way it did.  That is probably my only complaint with the story.  I would have liked to have seen the romance build and grow on page, not just be told about their prior feelings.
The overall plot was fast paced and entertaining and I enjoyed all the various supernaturals that we saw.  I liked both of the MC’s and Angel in particular was entertaining for me.  I love grumpy MC’s that are totally opposed to falling in love but do so anyways.  Angel was especially grumpy which made the tender scenes even more touching. I was happy for them in the end when they got their hea.  
This audiobook was narrated by Joel Leslie and I felt he did a very good job.  He did a Boston accent (where the story was set) for Angel and an Irish one for Simeon.  Both were distinct and I always knew who was talking.  There were a number of side characters in this story and they were all also done quite well.  
Overall I enjoyed this story.  I felt it was a solid start for a new paranormal series and as soon as I finished this one I downloaded book two.  I thought the narration was well done, also making this a good audiobook option.
The cover was done by Book Cover by Design.  I liked this and felt it was a good representation of the story.  My only thought is that it’s very dark and you have to really look at it to take in all the details.  
Sales Links
Audiobook Details:
Listening Length: 8 hours and 8 minutes
Audible Audio, 9 pages
Published March 21st 2017 by SJ Himes (first published February 25th 2016)
ASINB06XPNZSWS
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesThe Beacon Hill Sorcerer #1

More Postcards from Leipzig and Free Dreamer. This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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More Postcards from Leipzig and Free Dreamer

Last week we had our first look at F.D.’s trip to the Leipzip Book Fair.  This Sunday we pick up at our second of three installments of Free Dreamer’s Postcards from Leipzip ~ Book Adventures!  Next Sunday, we will wrap it all up and announce our winner as well.  Take it away, F.D.!

Day 2:

Welcome back to my adventures at the Leipzig Book Fair!

On Saturday, day two of our stay, we all had to go to the actual book fair together. Mandatory school programm. Which didn’t last too long, since we split up before we ever reached fair grounds. Me and my friends decided to grab breakfast at the main station. Food at the fair grounds is very expensive!
The tram to the fair grounds was packed full to the brim. So many people! I got lucky and was one of the first people to squeeze my way inside and actually managed to find a seat.
The Leipzig fair grounds turned out to be absolutely beautiful. There was even a big pond with a beautiful fountain right in front of the building. The weather was lovely, so it made for really pretty pictures.
Since the tram ride had taken longer than expected, we of course ended up being slightly late. Me and two friends had decided to listen to a dicussion about queer literature. Luckily my two friends knew where to go, otherwise I would have gotten completely lost. The entrance hall is huge, but it was packed full of people. All in all, there were five or six giant halls occupied by the book fair and every single one was packed.
We arrived just in time. The discussion was unexpectedly popular, so we ended up sitting on the floor because all the seats were long taken. The discussion was led by the manager of the “Quer Verlag”, Germany’s first publisher for gay and lesbian literature,  a gay romance author and a writer and journalist for lesbian and feminist literature. The three of them talked about what actually counts as “queer literature”. The guy from the Quer Verlag and especially the journalist seemed to think that gay romance should not be considered “queer literature” as its target audience and its authors are heterosexual women and not queer people. I absolutely don’t agree with that assessment, personally. I’ve never cared about an author’s sexual orientation. I’ve only ever cared about the sexual orientiation of their protagonists. It made me sad and angry to see m/m romance being discriminated and belittled. I think a large part of that is due to it being romance, which is still not  a very respected genre here.
They also talked about troubles with marketing and how mainstream bookshops never seemed to know where to put queer literature books and how mainstream publishers never mention the word “gay” or “lesbian” in authors’ bios or book blurbs. While I do work in a mainstream bookshop, I can’t say I have any experience with either queer publishers or mainstream publishers with queer titles. If we’ve ever had such titles in stock, I wasn’t aware of it.
One of my friends got so annoyed with the discussion that she up and left in the middle of it. She’s proof that not all readers (and writers) of m/m romance are straight. She’s a lesbian and totally addicted to the m/m genre.
After this rather infuriating and fruitless discussion, I stayed on with my one remaining friend to listen to a discussion about All Age books. After the participants all seemed to agree that TV series are a good substitute for books and consequently kept talking about Gilmore Girls, I decided to leave this discussion. I’ve never liked Gilmore Girls and found the whole discussion rather boring.
While wandering the hall, I met some classmates. I ended up touring the hall with one of them and buying 28 postcards to satisfy my postcard-addiction. Since noon was fast approaching, we decided to get lunch. We ended up sharing fries and sun bathing outside for a bit. Which led to me almost being late to a reading by Brandon Sanderson. At least that’s what it said in the program. The “reading” turned out to be an interview, which was interesting too, but not what I’d expected.
Since it was all over faster than expected, I decided to go to the meeting of the German book forum I joined years ago. I’ve been an active member there for 8 years now and I’ve met a few great people. Surprisingly enough, I managed to find to find the meeting point without too much trouble, even though my sense for directions is usually utterly awful. Once there, lots of hugging and book and postcard signing ensued.
After that was over and done with, I decided to take a look at the remaining halls. I found a few interesting books but was too shy to beg for free copies. Instead I took pictures and begged for a free copy from the safety of my work place by writing an e-mail. Some of my classmates were a lot less shy. My two temporary roommates each snagged a whopping twelve free books each!
I left the fair around 5.30, since I was exhausted and hungry and had agreed to another forum meeting at 6.30. I would have made it easily, had it not been for my awful sense of direction making me take the wrong exit and wandering around for half an hour to find the tram stop, which was on the opposite side of where I’d exited the building. Once I’d finally found it, everybody was trying to go back to the city and I had to wait at least 30 minutes till I actually managed to squeeze onto on of the trams. It was ludicrous!
The meeting/dinner was very nice and I met a few wonderful new people. I left early, though, since I wasn’t sure how to get back to our dump of a motel and was worried I’d miss the last bus there.
On the tram back, I met my teacher and she asked me how I was planning to get back home tomorrow. That left me a little confused, since I had been planning to take the train with her and my classmates.
If you want to know how I made it back home without a train ticket and how a bra that didn’t belong to either me or my roommates ended up on our door, then check back next week for the conclusion of my Book Fair Adventures.
    —-   Free Dreamer

📚Free Dreamer Book Fair Adventures Blog Giveaway📚

Have any questions for Free Dreamer? Leave them here along with your email address.  Random reader will be picked to win a $10 gift cert in the Free Dreamer Book Fair Adventures Blog Giveaway.  It ends 5/5  at midnight.  Have you been to a book fair? Met your favorite author?   Do you want to know what was Free Dreamer’s favorite part of her book fair experience was or what books she brought home?  Write in and leave a comment!

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, April 23:

  • More Postcards from Leipzig and Free Dreamer.
  • This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Monday, April 24:

  • Blog Tour: Heir of Locksley by N.B. Dixon
  • Cover Reveal for Unsteady by Melissa Collins
  • Release Blitz – Rick R Reed’s Unhinged
  • Tour – Clare London ‘s A Good Neighbour
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: Fishy Riot by Lindsey Black
  • A Ali Audiobook Review: Signs of Life (Resilient Love #2) by Melanie Hansen and Robert Nieman (Narrator)
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Pre Release Review: Risky Behavior by LA Witt and Cari Z

Tuesday, April 25:

  • BLOG TOUR See My Words by Melanie Hansen
  • BLOG TOUR Solid Ground by Jeff McKown
  • Release Blitz & Review Tour – By The Numbers – RJ Scott
  • A Jeri Release Day Review:  Darkest Hour Before Dawn (THIRDS #9) by Charlie Cochet
  • A Kai Audiobook Review: Add Love and Mix by Sean Michael and Steve Balderson (Narrator)
  • A MelanieM Review: Shelter the Sea by Heidi Cullinan
  • An Alisa Audiobook Review: The Necromancer’s Dance (The Beacon Hill Sorcerer #1) by S.J. Himes and Joel Leslie (Narrator)

Wednesday, April 26:

  • Cover Reveal for Ellery Mountain 1,2 & 3 – RJ Scott
  • Review Tour – Starting From Scratch (Housemates #5) by Jay Northcote
  • RIPTIDE TOUR Thaw by Elyse Springer
  • A Julia Review: Thaw (Seasons of Love #2) by Elyse Springer
  • A Kai Release Day Review: Kissing Lessons (Before… and After #2) by Susan Laine
  • A Stella Release Day Review: Olive Juice by TJ Klune
  • A Stella Release Day Review:  Vodka & Handcuffs (Mary’s Boys #2) by Brandon Witt

Thursday, April 27:

  • DSP GUEST POST BA Tortuga on Best New Artist
  • DSP GUEST POST Lindsey Black on Fishy Riot
  • Release Blitz Silvia Violet – Well-Tailored
  • Release Day Blitz: Tied to You by Riley Hart
  • A Jeri Release Day Review: Tied to You by Riley Hart
  • A Julia Review: The Rest is Illusion by Eric Arvin
  • An Alisa Review: The Acrobat (Blood Ties Book 1) by Agnes Moon and Kevan Houser (Translator)
  • An Ali Audiobook Review: Never Lose Your Flames (New Canadiana #1) by Francis Gideon and Kevin Chandler (Narrator)

Friday, April 28:

  • DSP GUEST BLOG Marguerite Labbe on Pandora
  • DSP Publications GUEST POST: Amy Lane on Quickening, Vol. 1
  • Release Day Tour:  Unsteady by Melissa Collins
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Personal Challenges by KC Wells
  • A Julia Review: Realm of Passion by Courtney Breazile
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: Best New Artist by BA Tortuga
  • An Ali Review: See My World by Melanie Hansen

Saturday, April 29:

  • Release Blitz – Laurent and the Beast by KA Merikan
  • A MelanieM Recent Release Review: Sharp Shooter Tokyoite by Charlie Godwyne

A MelanieM Review Wave Goodbye to Charlie by Eric Arvin

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Rating: 5 stars out of 5

2nd Edition

My name’s Charlie. I’m many things, though none of them having to do with any real talent. I’m a runaway, a hustler when I need to be, a ghost when I have to scare hoodlums away from my home, and a loner who maybe reads too much. But most of all, I’m the keeper of the carnival. That’s how I see myself. I look after the place ’cause even dying things need to be cared for. Maybe it’s illegal. Maybe that rusty metal fence around the carnival is supposed to keep me out too. Or maybe me and this place were meant to find each other. Truth is, I never felt at home anywhere but here, not even in all the foster families and orphanages I was placed in as a young shit. They don’t look for me no more, those places. I suspect I ran away so much they finally just said, “Fuck! Let him go.” I am a hangnail on society’s manicured middle finger. I’m older. One year past the age anyone gives a shit.

And this is my adventure…

I’d read Eric Arvin’s other incredible stories, including The Mingled Destinies of Crocodiles and Men, and Azrael and the Light Bringer but I had never gotten around to Wave Goodbye to Charlie.  With the passing of Eric Arvin, Dreamspinner Press is re-releaseing his novels, and it was the perfect time to pick it up and revisit the mind and imagination of a truly gifted man and author.

Once again the beauty and wild earthiness of Eric Arvin’s writing astounds me.  From the moment we meet Charlie, ambling along the road, voicing his thoughts about the trees and the dusty, grit of the surface, we know this character.  It’s in his speech and thought patterns.  It’s where he’s where’s he’s been, tricking himself out, and it’s in his final destination, the place he calls home, an abandoned carnival that just may not be all that empty.   Arvin brings us life lived at the margin of society in all it rawness and yes, tawdriness.  Yet, there’s something about Charlie so determined to live his life on his own terms, even if that means that his bed is a canoe from a rusted out ride, and his home does some peculiar things in the night. Charlie’s a hustler, a loner, and content to be on his own as a runaway.yet unusual enough to calmly accept the strange goings on around him.  That’s a whole lot of intriguing to start off with and Charlie just continues to pull you into his messy and strange life.

Wave Goodbye to Charlie becomes a journey for Charlie and the reader, an examination into the supernatural and the afterlife.  Reading through the story and passages, Charlie and the reader can pass from the mundane everyday occurrences to striking moments of terror and in Eric Arvin’s writing, it’s both beautiful and horrific,  illuminating and heartbreaking.  I find it hard to describe the moments of gut wrenching terror without having spoilers, just know there are some, not graphic but the feelings they engender will linger, until towards the end….when all start to be, not erased but transformed.

Leroy and Jimmy, Trent, Alfie, and  Nessa, all characters that are central to Charlie and his journey here.  Potential lovers, friends, a gay couple who consider him “their boy” and much more.  You will find yourself weeping with and for these people here, for tragedy and heartache is a commonality in this small misbegotten place and yet, together love binds them and moves them all forward, although not in a way you might expect.  Everyone you meet here feels incredibly real, both good and bad, as does the small town they all inhabit.  I expect this was a world Eric Arvin knew well because it lives and breathes here on these pages as do these people.  As to the rest?  Its anyone’s guess.  Again that mind of Arvin’s must have been a labyrinth of mythology, imagination and more, and unreal to navigate through if his stories are any indication.

I admit to being incredibly moved and needing to grab up tissues throughout this story.   So much of Wave Goodbye to Charlie still has me thinking, moved by the characters, their condition and their journey together.  This isn’t a romance, not in the traditional sense.   Maybe between Leroy and Jimmy, that’s true love at its finest, but for Charlie?  Well, you see….he was loved by more than he knew.   It took him a while to find that out.  Us too.  Pick up this book and take that journey.  Its an unforgettable one.

Cover Artist: John Coulthart.  This is  a perfect cover for this story in every way.  Read the book and find out why.

Sales Links

 

Book Details:

ebook, 2nd Edition, 200 pages
Published April 3rd 2017 by Dreamspinner Press (first published October 8th 2014)
ISBN 1635338212 (ISBN13: 9781635338218)
Edition Language English

A Caryn Review: Goodnight My Angel (Angel Enterprises #2) by Sue Brown

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Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

AAUGHHH!!  CLIFFHANGER!!!!

OK, I always know that’s a possibility when reading a series, but really???  Ms. Brown, did you really hold out on the bad guy reveal at THE VERY LAST MOMENT???

OK, rant over!  It has been 6 months since I read book one, Morning My Angel, and since I was so careful in my review of that book not to give any spoilers, I had to go back and reread it instead of just reading the blurb or my review.  Why?  Because this book jumped right into the problems between Josh Cooper – now working for the Agency instead of CDR – and Callum Ross – now working for CDR instead of the Agency.  Eh, all these spooks and their bosses were running together in my mind anyway, so I just let that one go.  In this series, it really seems to be a very incestuous group.  I thought at the end of book one that Josh and Callum were together, but apparently I was a bit premature – they kept their relationship mainly in the cyber arena for 6 months between books one and two, and in this one they are almost starting over.

OK, so I really didn’t get the purpose of that, but maybe I’ll figure out why that was important in the next book.  Really, the entire first chapter was a bit of a question mark for me, I am still not sure how it related to the overall plot, but I have a feeling the relevance of that bit of story will become clear in the next book.

Anyway, this time Callum has decided that he is absolutely going to be with Josh, one way or another, so he leaves Seattle to move to London, where Josh is currently working a variety of cases for the Agency, and as usual, loving his work.  Moving their relationship into the day to day world isn’t easy for these two alpha males who live for the job, and a lot of the tension comes from the two of them learning how to prioritize differently now that they are a couple, and learning to be more open and honest with each other.  When your career is keeping secrets as an undercover operative, it’s hard to change.  Making it harder is the fact that employees of the Agency, and their family members, are being murdered left and right, seemingly at random, so Josh and Callum once again team up to discover who the bad guy is and stop him.  All of the characters from book one are back, as well as the enigmatic “She” who runs the Agency.  Secrets continue to abound, and like their previous case, no one is willing to show all their cards, even to the investigators.  (I figured out who the bad guy was before Josh and Callum did, but the secret identity was NOT revealed, and I’m not sure about that yet, though I have my theories).

The action wasn’t as fast paced as it was in book one, because there was as much focus on the relationship between Josh and Callum as there was on the case, and those portions of the book were slower.  The focus also shifted from Josh to Callum as the main protagonist.  Callum may be more complicated, but I personally found Josh more interesting (and certainly more fun).  Josh’ personality was a little different in this book – maybe because it’s a different point of view, maybe because he is finally maturing – and I missed the old Josh.

I will definitely read the next in the series, despite the cliffhanger ending.  I still want to unravel all the threads that are connecting these two outfits, and I want to see Josh and Callum grow as a couple now that they’ve committed.  I will just have to have faith that all of the loose ends will be connected, and all of the mysteries revealed, and that all the secondary characters I’ve come to like will still be alive.

The cover art by Meredith Russell is similar to that of book one, but the model is much closer to how I imagined Callum.  Still not a cover that grips me though.

Sales Links

Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2npoGT3

Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2ohyCCg

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 249 pages
Published March 30th 2017 by Sue Brown’s Stories
ASIN B06XY7X2G2
Edition Language English

A MelanieM Recent Release Review: Fierce by Rob Rosen

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

Lucas has a typical life — apart from being abandoned as a baby, raised by wolves, and having super powers. Still, inside, he feels like two people, both vying for control of himself. He’s a superhero and a nerdy college freshman. He’s both feral and tame. He wants to do good in the world and, at the same time, he wants to do nothing. And most of all, he wants to find his birth parents.

In this comedic tale of romance, mystery, and adventure, our hero is joined by his hunky boyfriend, his acerbic boss, an uptight college science professor, and his ex-boyfriend/once crime-fighting partner — not to mention a whole pack of wolves — to help foil his nemesis and uncover the secrets of his past to save his future.

I absolutely love Rob Rosen’s humor. I doesn’t matter whether he’s writing about teenage superheroes or drag queens fighting zombies or anything in between, he always manages to make me laugh out loud while throwing in a genuine sniffle or two.  Its that ability to mix pathos with laughter that I’ve always found to be a hallmark of his and it works once more here in Fierce.

Of course, I loved that he opened with famous (and favorite ones of mine) first lines and then had his main character say he topped them all his his simple one of “Help”. From there the reader sets off on a wild adventure with a superhero teenager with typical snarky, ego centric characteristics combined with the abilities of a superbeing who’s in the middle of a mystery and doesn’t really know who to trust….yes, it’s a wild and bumpy for for us all.

But while we also have superheroes who were raised by wolves, as with Rob Rosen’s other stories, he always manages to make sure we are able to connect with the flawed, humans trying to reach whatever goals they have set, finding out who their parents are or finding love and keeping love in a zombie apocalypse.  He remembers to bring parts of his narrative down to an emotional level the reader can connect with while continuing to rampage through his comedic way in other threads.    Plus here there’s suspense over the evil villain and so many lovely twists and turns that my attention never wavered.

If you love teenage superheroes and a story full of humor, suspense and a touch of mystery and maybe something a little bit more, grab up Fierce and see what some Fierce in your life can do for you.

Cover art by Rob Rosen is adorable and eye catching.

Sales Links:

Book Details:

ebook, 225 pages
Published March 25th 2017 by JMS Books LLC admin@jms-books.com
ISBN139781634863599
Edition LanguageEnglish

RK Staunton On Writing, Stories and her latest release, Gabriel (Order of the Black Knights #5) (guest post)

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Gabriel (Order of the Black Knights #5) by R.K. Staunton
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reamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Aaron Anderson

Available for Purchase at

           

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Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host R.K. Staunton here today to talk about her latest story, Gabriel, the latest in the Order of the Black Knights series from Dreamspinners Press.  Welcome, R.K.!

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~Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words R.K. Staunton Interview ~

How much of yourself goes into a character?

I think at least a little of myself goes into every character I write or have ever written. We have small commonalities. For instance, at one point in my life I wanted to be a social worker and work in foster care like Lucas in Gabriel. For one reason or another, that never worked out for me, but that early ambition made its way into Lucas’s character.

At the same time, my characters are very much their own people. They have their own voices, and their own ideas that are often very different from what I think they’re going to do. Writers talk a lot about whether we outline or not and how much we outline. I fall somewhere in between in that I attempt to outline important parts but leave a lot of the getting there open, and I say that I attempt to outline because no matter how much I try the characters still seem to somehow change things up in the middle on me.

Gabriel is probably the character who is most different from me. He’s a hard-edged assassin, and I tend to be far more of the caregiver type.

Has your choice of childhood or teenage reading genres carried into your own choices for writing?

I’ve been voraciously reading romances since I was about 16. I write the kind of stories that I like to read. Gabriel is my first M/M book, but I’ve been a reader for years. Personally, I think it’s essential that you know your genre as a reader before you try to write it.

Do you like HFN or HEA? And why?

I’m a sucker for HEA. I’m a hopeless romantic who wants happily ever after. HFN is okay, but to me, it seems like more of a stopgap along the road to HEA than a true ending. When stories end in HFN, I always find myself wanting to know what happens next. It doesn’t feel like all the loose ends are tied up for me with that kind of ending.

How do you choose your covers?  (curious on my part)

Honestly, I don’t really have a method to choosing covers. It’s all about which one feels like it fits a particular story best. If I had to summarize it, I usually pick photos that look like the characters to me first. Then I’ll get a general idea of what I want as the look of the cover. Often, it doesn’t all come together until I’ve have a title, and that can be at any point in the book. I went into Gabriel knowing the title because all the books in the series are named after the knight featured in the book, but in the past, there have been times when I haven’t known the title until the very end of the book. On at least one occasion, I called the book by one title throughout the entire process then ended up changing it to something I thought fit better at the last minute. Sometimes, that would’ve also changed the cover, but it didn’t on that one.

Do you have a favorite among your own stories?  And why?

Not really. Trying to choose between my stories would be like trying to choose between my friends or even my children. I’m fond of each of them for different reasons. I do have favorite parts in every story that I especially like, but not a favorite book.

What’s next for you as an author?

For the next few months, I will be working on books that I’ll publish under my Ruth Staunton pen name. I publish books that feature spanking/domestic discipline under that pen name and more mainstream M/M books as RK Staunton. Prior to now, everything I have published as Ruth has been M/F, but the series I am working on for the remainder of this year will be M/M. For now, I have informally dubbed it my Geek Love series because at least one character in every couple is a technology geek. Those books will be out beginning in July with a crossover prequel, and the series proper will probably start sometime around September.

As for the next RK Staunton book, I’m toying with a sci-fi idea about a man whose partner disappears and is replaced with his genetic double, but no one believes this man when he says the double is not his partner. I have no idea when I’ll get around to writing that one though.

Excerpt

“I’ll call you tomorrow,” Gabriel went on, and Lucas nodded. He forced himself to unlock the door and push it open, and he felt more than saw Gabriel turn to go down the steps.

“Wait.”

Gabriel froze midstep and immediately turned back to look at him.

“Do you even have my number?” he asked as he stopped in the open doorway and turned back to face Gabriel

Gabriel’s face shifted from confused to blank and back again. He took his phone from his pocket and thumbed through the contacts. “No,” he said after a moment, “I don’t guess I do.”

“It will be hard for you to call me, then,” Lucas teased, and he smiled despite his anxiety.

Gabriel jogged up the steps, and they traded phones and added their information to one another’s contacts. “Sorry. I wasn’t trying to blow you off.”

“I know,” Lucas said. He passed back Gabriel’s phone and pocketed his own. “Now you can call me tomorrow.”

“And I will,” Gabriel promised.

Lucas stepped back. He meant to say good-bye and close the door, but his hand closed over Gabriel’s wrist before his mind was even consciously aware of what his body was doing. “Don’t go,” he heard himself say, sounding like nothing so much as a child begging a parent to stay with them after a nightmare. “I can’t do this alone.”

He didn’t mean to say that out loud. Yes, he was terrified. He couldn’t remember the last time he even spoke to Eric’s father beyond the briefest of pleasantries when he answered the phone. And it was going to be hard enough to go into Eric’s room to find the number. He hadn’t set foot in Eric’s room since Eric had been gone. He wasn’t looking forward to doing that alone. But he wasn’t supposed to say so out loud.

About The Order of the Black Knights

Every century has seen its knights. But there are those who are never seen. They do what must be done—what has to be done—when nobody wants to get their hands dirty. They are called the Black Knights. First created in the 1100s by the wizard Moriel, these men seem cold and hard, and it is said that some have no soul. But for each knight, there is one who can bring out the man who waits inside. The question is whether or not he will kill the individual before he figures it out.

Through the ages, they’ve conquered and ruled and taken what they wanted. And they have adapted to modern times. Instead of being bullies for hire, they have taken their skills further—the Internet, the CIA, government infiltration, hacking, special ops, assassination, but each one of them has a need they don’t understand—to squash, kill, or destroy.

Blurb for Gabriel

Gabriel Ingram is running from his past. It’s common knowledge at the college where he teaches that he’s a former CIA technical analyst, but no one knows the things he really did—or about the rage and bloodlust that are his constant companions. He’s holding on to his normal life with both hands, but he knows someday he’ll lose his grip.

Lucas Craig is a social worker studying to become a family therapist. For reasons Lucas can’t understand, the normally reclusive Professor Ingram takes an interest in him, and Lucas secretly hopes their friendship might become more.

Then Eric, Lucas’s roommate, disappears. Lucas is frantic. The police are no help. With nowhere else to turn, Lucas begs Gabriel for his expertise.

What starts as a simple errand to help a friend becomes a journey into a violent world of gangs and human trafficking—one that will bring Gabriel face-to-face with the forces intent on stealing his soul. But Lucas might be the one who can save him—if Gabriel can get them out alive.

About the Author

RK Staunton rebelled against having a Christmas birthday in favor of making an unexpected debut in early fall, and she’s been doing the unexpected ever since. This tendency has resulted in many adventures, including a ten-year stint as a guide in that strange urban jungle called middle school. While entertaining, that expedition ultimately proved too harrowing. After finally making her escape, she turned to a quieter life masquerading as a crazy cat lady living in a small town in the southeastern US.

RK has lived with a menagerie of characters inside her head for as long as she can remember. In a desperate bid to preserve her sanity, she has begun to transcribe the tales they tell her. This endeavor has proven to be fun, occasionally profitable, and cheaper than therapy. It has also fueled raging addictions to caffeine and chocolate on top of her lifelong addiction to books, but everyone is entitled to a vice or three, right?

RK also writes spanking and domestic discipline romances as Ruth Staunton. Right now, these are M/F, but several M/M stories are coming later this year. You can find out more about those books and get a free story here.

Find her Online:

Cardeno C on the Mates series + Giveaway

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Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host Cardeno C. today, celebrating the author’s Mate series and a new release in May!

The author is  happy to offer a giveaway for your blog readers –  three randomly chosen winners with each getting one of the books. To be entered to win, leave a comment with an email address where you can be reached if chosen.

Until Forever Comes (Mates, #2) by Cardeno C.


Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25926739-until-forever-comes

Amazon Link: http://www.amazon.com/Until-Forever-Comes-MatesCollection-ebook/dp/B011STPHA4/

A sensitive wolf shifter and a vicious vampire challenge history, greed, and the very fabric of their beings in order to stay together until forever comes.


Plagued by pain and weakness all his life, Ethan Abbatt is a wolf shifter who can’t shift. Hoping to find an honorable death by joining his pack mates in a vampire attack, Ethan instead

learns two things: draining his blood releases his pain and his wolf, and he has a true mate – a vampire named Miguel.


Over four centuries old, strong, powerful, and vicious, Miguel Rodriguez walks through life as a shadow, without happiness or affection. When a young shifter tells Miguel they’re true mates, destined to be together, Miguel sends him away. But Ethan is persistent and being together comes so naturally that Miguel can’t resist for long. The challenge is keeping themselves alive so they can stay by each other’s side until forever comes.


Word Count: 60,702

 

Wake Me Up Inside (Mates #1) by Cardeno C.


Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25967103-wake-me-up-inside

Amazon Link: http://www.amazon.com/Wake-Me-Inside-MatesCollection-ebook/dp/B0137I04VQ/


A powerful Alpha wolf shifter and a strong-willed human overcome traditions ingrained over generations and uncover long-buried secrets to fulfill their destiny as true mates.


Regarded as the strongest wolf shifter in generations, Alpha Zev Hassick is surprised and confused by his attraction to his best friend. His very human, very male best friend. A male shifter has to mate with a female shifter to keep his humanity, so shifters can’t be gay. Yet, everything inside Zev tells him Jonah is his true mate.


Maintaining a relationship with the man he has loved since childhood isn’t easy for Jonah Marvel, but he won’t let distance or Zev’s odd family get in their way. When unexplained ailments begin to plague Jonah, he needs to save his own life and sanity in order to have a future with Zev.


Zev and Jonah know they’re destined for each other, but they must overcome traditions ingrained over generations and long-buried secrets to fulfill their destiny.


Word Count: 74,755


In Your Eyes (Mates, #3) by Cardeno C.

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25927403-in-your-eyes

Amazon Link: http://www.amazon.com/In-Your-Eyes-MatesCollection-ebook/dp/B011STPGGO/


Two very different men with a tumultuous history must overcome challenges from all sides and see past their society’s rules to realize they are destined for one another.


Raised to become Alpha of the Yafenack pack, Samuel Goodwin dedicates his life to studying shifter laws, strengthening his body, and learning from his father. But despite his best efforts, Samuel can’t relate to people, including those he’s supposed to lead.


When Samuel meets Korban Keller, the son of a neighboring pack’s Alpha, he reacts with emotion instead of intellect for the first time in his life. Resenting the other shifter for throwing him off-balance, Samuel first tries to intimidate Korban and then desperately avoids him. What he can’t do is forget Korban’s warm eyes, easy smile, and happy personality.


When a battle between their fathers ends tragically, Samuel struggles to lead his pack while Korban works to break through Samuel’s emotional barriers. Two very different men with a tumultuous history must overcome challenges from all sides and see past their society’s rules to realize they are destined for one another.


Word Count: 60,875


COMING MAY 4, 2017

To Touch You


“His name is Salvatore Rossi. He’s a vampire. And he’s my true mate.”


By not relying on anyone except himself, Salvatore Rossi escaped a dead-end existence and reached the height of corporate success. But just when he has everything he always wanted, fate throws Salvatore a challenge he can’t solve alone and a young wolf shifter comes to his rescue.

Since childhood, Yoram Smith’s family was certain he would grow to become Alpha and save their beloved pack from its slow demise. When the time comes for a new leader, Yoram is forced to juggle his duty to care for a splintering pack with his duty to care for an absent mate, and his own strength suffers.

Being turned into a vampire didn’t alter Salvatore’s life philosophy: if you don’t rely on anyone, nobody can let you down. But when the boy who saved his life becomes a man who needs his help, the icy vampire must find his humanity.

 

CC

 

 

 

 

 

 

Heartwarming Stories. Strong Relationships. Forever Love.
 

 

Adventures From Leipzig – Postcards from Free Dreamer Part I. This Week At Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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As promised, we are starting to post Free Dreamer’s adventures at the book fair.  We had a small teaser a short while ago.  But now let’s delve into Free Dreamer’s journey to Leipzig and her book adventures!

Adventures From Leipzig – Postcards from Free Dreamer

After a very bumpy ride on the night train from Vienna we finally arrived at Leipzig main station, early on Friday morning.Despite the early hour, the train station and the tram stops in front were very busy. Lots and lots of people arriving by train and taking the tram to the book fair.
We took the tram to our “hotel”. Oh boy, what a dump. It wasn’t a hotel but a camping site, with three of us sharing a bungalow each. It was freezing and tiny and the wireless didn’t work. We were collectively Not Pleased.
After we’d checked in and stored our luggage, my teacher made us go to a printing museum. We printed our own postcards, which was fun. And then an employee showed us one old and two really antique presses. It was really interesting to watch him work. Other than that, the museum was a bit dull and not very exciting.
Luckily, we got the rest of the day off and got to do whatever we wanted. Me and my three classmates went back to the main station. First, we explored the shops a bit. German products tend to be cheaper than those in Austria and there are some you can only get in Germany. I was getting really excited, because it wasn’t long till Brandon Sanderson, my absolutely most favourite author of all times would hopefully sign my books. So we decided to check out the book store that hosted the signing. Since nobody was around yet and we were all starving, we found food at the Pizza Hut next door. Another new experience for me, since there are no Pizza Huts in Austria.
For those of you who don’t know Brandon Sanderson: He’s an American Fantasy and SciFi author. I’ve been a fan of his works for many, many years and never thought I’d ever be lucky enough to meet him in person. Not all that many international authors ever make it to Austria.
When I got back to the shop, there was already a very long line of people waiting to have their books signed. I was so nervous and excited. I ended up standing in line for about 45 minutes. Luckily, the woman in front of me was very talkative and we had an interesting chat. A group of three showed up in cosplay, dressed as characters from “Way of Kings”. They were kind enough to pose for pictures.
And then I could see HIM. I wanted to squeal in excitement but held myself back. I was so thrilled. I had six books of his with me. And he signed every single one of them. For “Elantris”, he drew a little city map. Some of the others got a little quote from the book. And all of them got a “for Miriam”. I was happy beyond imagination.
He wanted to know if I had any questions for him. I was too excited to come up with anything good. But then I asked him why he didn’t come to Vienna and complained that I had to bring six (not exactly light) books all the way from Vienna by night train. First, he laughed and said, “Well, I flew over Vienna when I came here!” And I just thought to myself that that wasn’t very useful… Then he started to give me this speech about how a book shop had to contact his agent and invite him and so on. I cut him off. (Yes, I cut off my absolutely most favourite author!!) I explained that I’m a bookseller and that I’m aware of the procedure. And that my employer HAD invited him. He listened patiently and then gave me hope. Once he gets invited somewhere, he always visits, sooner or later. Then I posed for a picture with him and when I left, he said, “Thank youf or being a bookseller!” I was thrilled beyond words. *.*
After that amazing experience, I met up with my friends again, who are horribly ignorant people who’ve never read anything by Brandon Sanderson, even though I repeatedly told them how awesome he is. We wanted to go to the Fantasy night hosted by a German publisher. On the way there, we got horribly lost and ended up being half an hour late. Since Brandon Sanderson and two famous German Fantasy authors were there, the place was packed and we couldn’t even get into the main room anymore. We had to sit in a side room, with no view of the stage and could only listen to the three of them talking. The interview wasn’t done very well. Half the stuff wasn’t translated or was lost in translation, since Sanderson doesn’t speak German. It ended up being a rather dull affair and we left after a short while.
The day had been long and the night even shorter, so we found our way back to our dump. It was a little creepy at night. It was in the middle of a forest and not very well lit. Apparently those houses are a favourite hiding place for spiders. My two friends got rid of a huge, hideous spider, while I hid out on my bed. I think we killed five or six spiders that night. It was really rather disgusting. *shudders*
If you want to hear how we survived the night in the spider-infested dump and what Germans have to say about queer literature, check back next week.

📚Free Dreamer Book Fair Adventures Blog Giveaway📚

Have any questions for Free Dreamer? Leave them here along with your email address.  Random reader will be picked to win a $10 gift cert in the Free Dreamer Book Fair Adventures Blog Giveaway.  It ends 4/29 at midnight.  Have you been to a book fair? Met your favorite author?   Do you want to know what was Free Dreamer’s favorite part of her book fair experience was or what books she brought home?  Write in and leave a comment!

This Week At Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, April 16:

  • Adventures From Leipzig – Postcards from Free Dreamer
  • This Week At Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Monday, April 17:

  • Book Blitz September by Robert Winter
  • Cardeno C on the Mates series + Giveaway
  • DSP GUEST POST Tali Spencer on Breaking the Ice
  • Release Blitz & Review Tour – Moments – RJ Scott
  • Review Tour – Goodnight My Angel by Sue Brown
  • A Caryn Review:  Goodnight My Angel by Sue Brown
  • A Julia (or Stella) Prerelease Review: The Seafarer’s Kiss by Julia Ember
  • A MelanieM Review Tour: Moments by RJ Scott

Tuesday, April 18:

  • DSP GUEST POST RK Staunton
  • HARMONY INK PRESS GUEST POST Nikolai Joslin on Cold Front
  • RIPTIDE TOUR Wake Up Call by JL Merrow
  • A MelanieM Review:  Imagines (Imago #2) by N.R Walker
  • A Stella Review: Wake Up Call (Porthkennack #1) by J.L. Merrow
  • An Alisa Review: Beneath the Layers Anthology
  • An Ali Audiobook Review: Lord Mouse (Lords of Davenia #1) by Mason Thomas and Joel Leslie (Narrator)

Wednesday, April 19:

  • Blog tour Shelter The Sea by Heidi Cullinan
  • Blog Tour Beneath the Layers Anthology
  • Fierce by Rob Rosen 2 week blog tour
  • Review Tour – N.R Walker – Imagines (Imago #2)
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review:  A Day Makes by Mary Calmes
  • A MelanieM Recent Release Review: Fierce by Rob Rosen
  • An Alisa Release Day Review: Breaking the Ice by Tali Spencer

Thursday, April 20:

  • Blog Tour: Falling for Him by CL Mustafic
  • DSP GUEST POST Andria Large on From War to Forever
  • Review Tour – Snap Shot by V.L Locey
  • RIPTIDE TOUR A Gathering Storm by Joanna Chambers
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: A Gathering Storm (Porthkennack #2) by Joanna Chambers
  • A MelanieM  Audiobook Review: Rough Edges by Cardeno C. and Kevin Chandler (Narrator)

Friday, April 21:

  • Blog Tour Drama Queens With Love Scenes by Kevin Klehr
  • Book Blitz Sound of Us by A.M. Arthur
  • DSP GUEST POST KC Burn on Just Add Argyle + Giveaway
  • Release Blitz & Giveaway:  Clare London’s  A Good Neighbour
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Release Day Review: Just Add Argyle (Fabric Hearts #3) by K.C. Burn
  • A MelanieM Review: Wave Goodbye to Charlie by Eric Arvin
  • A Stella Review: Falling for Him by CL Mustafic
  • An Ali Audiobook Review: The Imperfection of the Swans by Brandon Witt and Kirt Graves (Narrator)

Saturday, April 22:

A MelanieM Review: Wytch & Prinze by Kassandra Lea