A Barb the Zany Old Lady Release Day Review: Super for You Bad for Me by Asta Idonea

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

This was like an adult comic book without the pictures. Darn. I really would have liked to have seen some of these action shots, but I had to dust off my imagination and allow the author’s words to create the visual imagery. And create it, she did.

One has to take the whole story with a grain of salt so if you are the kind of reader who wants a very down-to-earth MM romance, this may not be for you. Imagination is the key. After all, how many contemporary superheroes do we get a chance to read about, especially one as sweet as Oswell Outterridge, aka Greenbird.

Oswell Outterridge is just an average guy looking to become an actor, so naturally, he kicks off his career as an extra on the film where his heartthrob, Kane Teague, has the star role. He’s shocked when Kane notices him and asks him out but pleasantly surprised once they get to know each other. It’s a very slow burn in a nonexplicit relationship, but the two eventually realize they love each other.

In the meantime, Oswell gets an opportunity at the film studio to be in a special scene where he is slimed. Though most people wouldn’t want that, he knows it’s his chance to get a credit so he’s all for it. Unfortunately, he swallows some, and aside from the raunchy taste, he finds out later that it has other side effects. He’s suddenly able to telekinetically move objects and is shocked when his actions save some customers at the restaurant where he works between action jobs. In fact, he’s so excited, he has a suit made and decides to put his gift to good use and call himself TelekineticusRex. Too bad when his photos hit social media, he’s dubbed Greenbird. What a letdown.

I must say throughout the whole story, the author’s sense of humor shines through. This story is fun and satiric, campy and goofy, but all in all, it’s great entertainment. For those of us who have grown up with a love of superhero comics, Greenbird should be a treat. And the good news is that no matter how much trouble Oswell lands in as Greenbird, and no matter how many times his archenemy (of course he has one!) tries to wipe him out, he manages to be the victor, and he and Kane ultimately find their way to a very happy ever after.

The artfully designed cover by Paul Richmond features a young man dressed in a green lycra bodysuit, arms crossed at his chest. It’s the perfect representation of our superhero, Oswell Otterridge – the Greenbird.

Sales Links:   Dreamspinner Press | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 200 pages
Expected publication: August 14th 2018 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN139781640802087
Edition LanguageEnglish

A VVivacious Review : Sky Full Of Mysteries by Rick R Reed

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Rating: 3.5 Stars out of 5

Cole Weston returns home to find his boyfriend and first love, Rory Schneidmiller gone without a trace. Cole is devastated but he gradually puts his life back together and finds love once again in his now husband, Tommy D’Amico.

In the blink of an eye, twenty years pass for Rory and he can’t help but want to see Cole because in his heart Cole is his love but as he comes to realise circumstances have drastically changed for Cole.

Cole finds himself faced with an impossible quandary, what will he do?

I am really not sure of my rating for this book. This is one book in which I am pretty sure a rating can’t truly reflect what I think of the book. It was pretty out there. I don’t even know if I will able to articulate the absolute chaos of thoughts that I have after finishing this book but I guess I have to give it a try.

When I started the story, I had already read the blurb, as I suppose most of you would have as well. The blurb reveals most of the story. So, when you get down to reading the book you would know almost everything. You know where the story is headed after all I picked up this book to know the answer to that question at the end of the blurb, the choice between an idealized and passionate first love and the comfort of a long-term marriage. But, the truth is almost 85% of this book is setup, it is the story behind the choice or in better words, how the choice even came to be. While in hindsight, maybe there isn’t much of a dilemma between these two choices but while I was reading the first 85% of this book I couldn’t help but hope things would hurry along to the real question.

The dilemma that Cole faces is one that almost no one will face, but theoretically, he does face the dilemma. Now the choice depends on a lot of factors, even if he was in an unhappy marriage, Rory would hardly be the best choice, they are more than 20 years apart in age, it would be really difficult to account for his presence and why he looks 20 years younger than he should be and moreover there are going to be a lot of people interested in finding out why, so really the only thing Rory has going for him is that Cole might still be hung-up on Rory after all this time which he is, as the book amply demonstrates and which I felt was the only thing the setup of this book really wanted to achieve. To inform us that Cole still loves Rory and believes him to be his true love. Because what the setup fails to do is give us any substance of the kind of relationship Rory/Cole and Cole/Tommy share we just see the end of one and the beginning of another. In fact, I was so disconnected from these two relationships that the letter Rory writes to Cole feels like a different beast altogether and I still can’t conceive that this letter was written by the Rory we have come to know.

Also, there are obviously things that Cole is hiding from Tommy, we never do get to know how Cole deals with that particular minefield.

There are also aliens in this book. I was a little surprised by this, God knows why but even knowing the premise of this story the whole close encounters of the third kind thing caught me off-guard and I have no idea how I feel about the use of extraterrestrials in this book.

Well, this story gave me a lot to think about but I don’t know if it managed to answer it’s own question. I didn’t quite agree with the ending of the book. I can’t fully reconcile with Rory’s decision which appears to hinge completely on Cole’s.

The story is engaging and the setup doesn’t bog you down too much but definitely allows you to really get to know Cole and Rory. It raises a lot of questions and speculations but all in all, it truly is an interesting read.

Cover Art by Reese Dante. I liked the cover it tends to evoke just the kind of response that the story does though there is an almost criminal overuse of white dots on the cover.

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Dreamspinner

Book Details:

ebook, 220 pages
Expected publication: August 14th 2018 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN139781640801585
Edition LanguageEnglish

Release Blitz – Sky Full Of Mysteries by Rick R Reed (excerpt and giveaway)

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Length: 76,456 words
 
 
Cover Design: Reese Dante
 
Blurb
 

What if your first love was abducted and presumed dead—but returned twenty years later?

That’s the dilemma Cole Weston faces. Now happily married to Tommy D’Amico, he’s suddenly thrown into a surreal world when his first love, Rory Schneidmiller, unexpectedly reappears.

Where has Rory been all this time? What happened to him two decades ago, when a strange mass appeared in the night sky and lifted him into the heavens? Rory has no memory of those years. For him, it’s as though only a day or two has passed.

Rory still loves Cole with the passion unique to young first love. Cole has never forgotten Rory, yet Tommy has been his rock, by his side since Rory disappeared.

Cole is forced to choose between an idealized and passionate first love and the comfort of a long-term marriage. How can he decide? Who faces this kind of quandary, anyway? The answers might lie among the stars….

 

ExcerptCole patted his back pocket, making sure his wallet was still there. He hoisted himself up from his seat and left the train’s air-conditioning for the humid night. There were several trains in the station, all huffing and puffing as they idled, reminding Cole of dragons. Even this late, there were still people hurrying to and fro on the platform.

Cole headed for the stairs and hurried down. Home was only a ten- minute walk from the station, and Cole was now actually grateful for the nap. If that boy’s not up when I get home, he thought with a grin, I’ll just have to poke him awake.

Cole was certain Rory wouldn’t mind.

When he reached the courtyard of their building, the exhaustion Cole had felt on leaving work entirely vanished. He was ready to howl at the moon. He wished only he’d thought to stop off at a convenience store or something so he could have brought Rory a little surprise, maybe a box of Swedish Fish or a roll of SweeTarts. He’d have to find other ways, he supposed, to thrill his sugar-loving man. He’d give him some sugar, all right.

Cole unlocked the front vestibule door and headed into the cool tile lobby of their building. He loved the 1920s vibe of the lobby and the building in general, glad no one in all the ensuing decades since it had been built had decided the gem of a vintage building needed updating. He loved the mica-colored wall sconces and the Mediterranean floor tile. He even loved the battered brass mailboxes along one wall.

He stopped to check the mail, found the box empty, and headed for the elevator.

Out front, Cole hoped Rory had left the door unlocked for him. No such luck. He fished his keys from his pocket and quelled his first impulse, which was to shout, “Honey, I’m home!” at the top of his lungs. If the poor guy was asleep, Cole reasoned, let him sleep. There were subtler and much more pleasurable ways to wake him.

As he made his way through the living room and toward the bedroom, he dropped clothing as he went. He also shut off the lights Rory had thoughtfully left on for him. By the time he reached the closed bedroom door, he was smiling and sporting an erection.

He opened the door slowly. It took his eyes a moment to adjust. They had, in fact, thumb-tacked a sheet over the sole window, so the room stayed pretty dark.

Cole groped his way to the bed, suppressing a giggle.

But when he got there, the giggle died on his lips. He felt around the surface, up, down, left, right, as though his own hands deceived him. He frowned and then turned to the light switch on the wall and flicked it. The room filled with warm yellow light. No Rory. Cole hadn’t expected that, and he cocked his head. Absurdly, he looked around the room, thinking maybe he’d find Rory sitting on the chair they used to pile their clothes on before hopping into bed for the night. Maybe he’d rolled out and was fast asleep on the braided rug they’d positioned beneath it.

But the room was empty. Unusually neat—the bed made and no clothes lying on the chair in the corner. Cole crossed the room and opened the door to the single closet. Maybe Rory was hiding from him? One of the things they both loved about the apartment was the size of the bedroom closet. It was walk-in, with rods on either side, shelving above, and even a window that looked outside. Rory could be weird. Maybe he lay within, naked and waiting, ready to pull out all the stops on yet another fantasy.

But the empty closet mocked him. Where was he?

Cole retreated from the bedroom. “Rory? Babe?” Cole made a quick tour of the small apartment, knowing as he did it that the search would be wasted effort. And it was. Rory wasn’t in the living room, the dining room, kitchen, or bathroom.

Cole returned to the bedroom and ran his hands along the top of the dresser. Rory usually left his wallet and keys on top of it. But just like the rest of his search, this maneuver was only an empty gesture. Rory’s keys and wallet were gone, indicating he was still out there somewhere.

That was odd. Cole glanced at the alarm clock on the nightstand and saw it was approaching twelve thirty. Cole knew Rory had to be up early for work in the morning—he had flex hours at his job and liked to work the earlier spectrum—usually seven thirty to four. And Rory loved his sleep! Sometimes he dragged Cole to bed as early as nine o’clock. Cole never complained.

So what was he doing out so late on a school night?

Cole plopped down on the bed, head in his hands. Don’t panic. Don’t even worry. It’s most likely nothing at all. Maybe he got over his aversion to gay bars and is down on Halsted Street, living it up, downing shots backed up by beers. The thought made him chuckle, as that scenario was about as likely as Cole being on a jet bound for Paris, France. Still, in spite of its improbability, the notion did cause a stab of jealousy to jab at Cole—right in his solar plexus. Sure, Rory might be one of the few gay men their age Cole knew who actually didn’t like to go out to bars, but he still could have. It was possible, as he might say if queried on a witness stand in some court of law. Cole felt sick to his stomach as he allowed himself to think what was lurking at the back of his mind, like some black shadow. It was also possible that Rory had gone out and hooked up with someone and lost track of time.

Cole licked his lips, mouth suddenly dry. He had a lot of gay male friends and acquaintances and knew fidelity was a fairly rare thing, even among the ones who claimed to be in committed, monogamous relationships. Why, some of those fellas had even come on to Cole when the boyfriend was out of town or just out of the picture.

Maybe their relationship wasn’t as solid as Cole thought? Rory could have been tempted. It was possible. He was a cute guy who didn’t know it, which made him even cuter. He could see him being hit on— and maybe if he was lonely or bored, he might have given in? Are any of us truly immune to temptation?

No. Not Rory. Cole knew in his heart of hearts that Rory would never cheat. He just didn’t have it in him, literally or figuratively.

So where are you? Cole stood and began pacing. He pulled aside the sheet tacked up over the window to look outside, hoping against hope he’d see Rory down there on the beach. He did see someone, a guy, sitting on the sand at the edge of the beach, his feet pushed into the waves. But even from up there, Cole could tell the guy had at least fifty pounds on Rory, if not more. And he was smoking….

A woman walked by. A big dog, maybe a pit bull, dashed ahead of her, splashing at the edge of the surf. Cole could see the leash in her hand. She called the dog back, and it sounded to Cole like its name was Pashmina.

There was no one else on the beach this late.

 

 

Real Men. True Love.

Rick R. Reed draws inspiration from the lives of gay men to craft stories that quicken the heartbeat, engage emotions, and keep the pages turning. Although he dabbles in horror, dark suspense, and comedy, his attention always returns to the power of love. He’s the award-winning and bestselling author of more than fifty works of published fiction and is forever at work on yet another book. Lambda Literary has called him: “A writer that doesn’t disappoint…” You can find him at www.rickrreed.com or www.rickrreedreality.blogspot.com. Rick lives in Palm Springs, CA with his beloved husband.

FIND RICK ONLINE
Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/rickrreedbooks
Twitter: www.twitter.com/rickrreed
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+RickReedWRITER
Blog: http://rickrreedreality.blogspot.com/
Website: www.rickrreed.com
Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/rick-r-reed
Email: rickrreedbooks@gmail.com

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Cover Reveal for Calculated Magic by SJD Peterson

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Calculated Magic by SJD Peterson
Release Date: October 16, 2018

Cover Artist: Alexandria Corza, http://www.seeingstatic.com/

Buy Links:  Dreamspinner Press eBook and  Paperback  

About Calculated Magic...

 

Never too late for love.

 

Three-hundred-and-fifty-year-old warlock Tikron must find his true love or forfeit his immortality. But if he hasn’t found his ideal mate in all these centuries, the prospects don’t look too bright.

 

That is, until he sees mathematician Richard Beaumont. It’s love at first sight and Tikron’s future just got a whole lot brighter.

 

Except Richard doesn’t believe in love at first sight. He doesn’t believe in love at all. He certainly doesn’t believe in magic. His life is ruled by statistics and logic, and they tell him a relationship with Tikron has only a 10 percent chance of success. That’s unacceptable—even if the attraction between them is off the charts.

 

With his powers waning and the clock ticking down, Tikron’s last hope is showing Richard the true meaning of magic.

 

Category: Other Paranormal, Dreamspun Beyond
Pages: 225 (ebook), 230 (paperback)

About the Author

 

SJD Peterson, better known as Jo, is an Amazon bestselling and award winning author of gay romance. Her books have received starred reviews in USA Today.

 

Jo currently lives in Greenville, South Carolina, having had enough of the Michigan winters to last her a lifetime. She has no idea where she’ll end up next but wherever she goes, it will be snow and ice-free.

 

If you want to know more about Jo or when her next book will come out, please visit her website at http://www.sjdpeterson.com.

 

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/SJD.Peterson

Twitter: @SJDPeterson

Email: sjdpeterson@gmail.com

 

A Barb the Zany Old Lady Audiobook Review: A Courageous Ride (The Bullriders#3) by Andrew Grey and John Solo (Narrator)

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Rating 4 stars out of 5

Aspiring orchestra conductor Marshall is exhausted after months of auditions without a single job offer. When a friend recommends a change of scenery in the form of a dude ranch run by former bull rider Indigo Santana, Marshall heads there for a break.

Indigo and Marshall are immediately attracted, but Indigo’s confidence is shot after an injury ended his rodeo career, and he walks with a slight limp. He hasn’t been anywhere near a bull since he was hurt, and his personality makes for a pretty gruff host for a dude ranch. He’d really rather be bull riding, and the only reason he keeps guests is because his family ranch is all but bankrupt.

Though mismatched on the outside, the hearts of these two men know a kindred spirit and romance is in the air during the short time they spend together. Marshall is so relaxed, in fact, that music comes to him and he composes an orchestra movement that brings his love of both the ranch and Indigo together.

Unfortunately, he’s offered a position in New York, and with encouragement from Indigo, he decides to take it, breaking up the couple before they have a chance to get solid. Naturally, Andrew Grey finds a way to get them to see what they are missing and to come together for an HEA that underlines the importance of love and family.

John Solo does a great job narrating this story with a wide variety of vocalizations, both male and female. He swept me along with this tale of the West, and I definitely recommend it to others to enjoy in the audio format.

~~~

The cover by LC Chase depicts the upper body of a young man in dress shirt and vest with a dreamy look on his face and there’s a handsome cowboy standing behind the young man. A small photo of a bull rider in the bottom left pane completes the view. The cover is perfect for this story and it gives readers an idea of how Marshall and Indigo look.

Sales Links:  Dreamspinner Press | Amazon | Audible | iTunes

Audiobook Details:

Release Date Jul 17, 2018
Type Novels
Length 8:26

Liv Olteano with a Character Q & A and more for Star-Crossed Lover (excerpt and giveaway)

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Star-Crossed Lover (Dreamcatchers #2) by Liv Olteano
Dreamspinner Press
Cover Art: Aaron Anderson

Buy Links:  Dreamspinner Press eBook and  Paperback |  Amazon | Barnes & Noble 

Goodreads Link

 

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host Liv Olteano here today on tour for her new release Star-crossed Lover. Liv has a   Q & A with Taka, a wonderful excerpt and a giveaway for all to enter.  Welcome, Liv.

 

Q&A with Taka from Star-crossed Lover by Liv Olteano

Interviewer: Is it fair to say that you’re pretty old?

Taka: *glares* No. “Pretty experienced” would be fair.

Interviewer: *clears throat* Right. Of course. Sorry about that. So you’ve been around for a while.

Taka: Since World War II, in fact. Yes.

Interviewer: How do you think the world has changed since then?

Taka: Oh, how hasn’t it changed? I suppose there are the woes of modern life, like speeding up everything – whether it’s suited for speed or not –, avoidance of human contact via social networks, access to unlimited information with lesser and lesser interest in actually getting informed and properly study a topic. You can always find things that are wrong with people and society by and large, in any time and place.

But I like to focus on the positive side. Technology has evolved in a staggering pace. For someone like me, who’s been around during this whole process of development, it’s almost miraculous in fact. Science has made giant leaps. Any kind of progress demands sacrifice.

Interviewer: What’s your favorite part of the world as it is today?

Taka: Oh, that’s an easy answer: technology in all its forms. I love my laptop, smart phone, tablet – all of it. And Ginger. He’s definitely among my top 5 things about the world today. *grins*

Ginger elbows him in the ribs. “So I’m not your no.1 fav? We’ll have words, you and I.”

Interviewer: I hope I’m not creating any tension between you guys!

Taka: Nothing can create tension between us, unless it’s sexual tension.

Interviewer: Well! I think that about wraps it up for us today.

Taka: *chuckles and leaves, taking Ginger by the hand*

Interviewer: “I strongly suspect I’ve just been played to end this earlier than agreed upon.”

Blurb:

A love worth crossing the stars for.

Taka has been a dreamcatcher and part of Team 32 for over six decades, but nobody has tempted him like Ginger—a dancer at club Zee. Too bad dreamcatchers aren’t allowed to have meaningful relationships with regular people. His willpower proves a finite resource, though, when a mission at the club means spending much more time around Ginger.

Ginger’s infatuation with Taka is unwavering. When he proves to have some paranormal skills of his own, he earns himself a place on the team—if he wants it. His decision will change his life—not to mention Taka’s—irrevocably.

But living in the now could prove an issue for a man who has as much history as Taka. Can Ginger’s determination help him make his way into Taka’s heart?

 

Excerpt

“It was broad daylight when I walked into club Zee, but as soon as I got inside, darkness embraced me.

It was rehearsal time for many of the dancers, and the bar was open. During the day you could go in, have your drinks, and watch some rehearsals—all without an entrance fee. Dancers didn’t wear their flamboyant outfits for rehearsal, though since some of them wore considerably less clothing, one might say it was an even better sight. The single- and two-dancer-wide mini stages sprinkled all through the tall and semidark room were black, and so were the floors. Laser lights glided down the dancers’ bodies at night. During rehearsal they had modest colorful lights moving about now and then. There was something more playful than sensual about the mood during the day, and I liked that better.

I also rarely had the time to stop by during the night, considering my “working hours” as a dreamcatcher. Hunting spaga—our enemies—was a nighttime job, since they attacked people in their sleep to steal away their life force and induce nightmares in the process. Our fierce spirit guide Asibikaashi—the Spider Woman and Spirit Mother we lovingly called Aashi for short—asked we be ready to go out on mission from about ten in the evening to close to sunup. Having a curfew after more than six decades of service might have seemed embarrassing, but since I was a long-lived man that looked barely a day older than forty, I kept my ego in check. Some embarrassments you got used to. Like living with my teammates: Claw, our team leader and the oldest dreamcatcher I knew personally; Drew, the annoying one of our two new team members and the muscle of our team; and Drew’s mate and strangely all-around nice guy, Angelo. We were Team 32, operating in the Queen Anne area of Seattle. Regular people couldn’t know about us, or it would make them likelier targets for the spaga. Hanging around people made them likelier targets too. It was best for everyone for us to keep as much distance as we could. But visiting club Zee was a habit I couldn’t shake. In my mind, I made up for it by casting spider magic–fueled protections on the club and people here. As I knew pretty well after all my years of dreamcatcher service, there was no such thing as a perfect shield or protection against the spaga. The reason they chose sleepers as targets was that they were more vulnerable then, but there was no such thing as impenetrable security regardless of circumstances.

Club Zee was pretty popular during the day, and more so at night. Though at night there was pulsing, throbbing, bang-your-brains-out music, during the day the DJ played a different kind of tune. The soft notes of a rock ballad poured out from the speakers, giving the dancers who were practicing a sort of languorousness to their movements. The slower pace made every muscle of their bodies stand out as they moved.

My gaze sought him out before I could stop it. He was never hard to spot. His russet hair, coupled with the soft glow of the spotlight aimed at him, made the sweat on his body look like honey dripping down the corded sinew. For some inexplicable reason, he whipped his head around as if my stare had poked him in the ribs. His gaze shot to mine over the floor, locating me with laser-like precision despite the light and dark effects in the club. I could see the corner of his lips tilting up slowly. It was a lazy, provocative grin that spoke of satisfaction at the attention I couldn’t stop giving him each time I stopped by. He tilted his chin ever so slightly upward and moved his hips with the kind of smoothness that only a serpent should possess. No creature with bones in their body should be able to wiggle like that. This guy would be the death of me, I was pretty sure.

It took a considerable conscious effort to look at anything but him. A fan of self-discipline, I put in that effort and looked away.

I could sense Ginger’s gaze following me as I moved across the floor. I felt it like sticky, warm fingers constantly rubbing over my skin. No matter how long he’d practice from this point on, I knew his gaze would be aimed at me. His focus was a missile that ignited my awareness and arousal, even from this far away. My loins throbbed almost painfully.

If I were a poet or a bard, I might write poems and songs about all the things that simply laying eyes on him did to me. But though I appreciated poetry and music, Ginger’s effect on me had to be kept a secret—from him, first and foremost. In the little hours of morning, after a mission was done but before sleep would take over, I could lie in my bed and contemplate at leisure the sea of desire for and thoughts of him that I nearly drowned in every day; I could examine how that sea eroded away my will to not have him, and how my longing for him grew deeper and more tormenting with each grain of sand lost. Wave after wave of fantasies tormented me. Dreams of what could be but wouldn’t almost pulled me under. If anything, seeing him helped me keep my head on straight—while I was in his presence, that was. As soon as I was without it, I felt adrift in dark waters, shaken by cruel and relentless storms. ”

Want to read more from Chapter 1? Check out the book on the Dreamspinner Press site (Link: https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/star-crossed-lover-by-liv-olteano-9740-b ) and hit the Read an Excerpt button right beneath the cover xD

 

About Liv Olteano:

Liv Olteano is a voracious reader, music lover, and coffee addict extraordinaire. And occasional geek. Okay, more than occasional.

She believes stories are the best kind of magic there is. And life would be horrible without magic. Her hobbies include losing herself in the minds and souls of characters, giving up countless nights of sleep to get to know said characters, and trying to introduce them to the world. Sometimes they appreciate her efforts. The process would probably go quicker if they’d bring her a cup of coffee now and then when stopping by. Characters—what can you do, right?

Liv has a penchant for quirky stories and is a reverent lover of diversity. She can be found loitering around the Internet at odd hours and being generally awkward and goofy at all times.

Links:

http://liv.liviaolteano.com

http://blog.liviaolteano.com/

https://twitter.com/LiviaOlteano

https://www.facebook.com/LiviaOlteano

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6952513.Liv_Olteano

Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/zZ7T9

Giveaway

Rafflecopter Giveaway:  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.

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Cover Reveal for Gateway to Love by Sarah Hadley Brook

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 Gateway to Love by Sarah Hadley Brook

Cover Artist: Brooke Albrecht http://brookealbrechtstudio.com

Release Date: October 19, 2018

Buy Link:  Dreamspinner Press eBook

 

 

 

About Gateway To Love

 

Ten days to finally make the leap from friends to lovers….

 

Craig and Mitchell have been friends for years, but each of them reached a point where that camaraderie became… more. Mitchell’s kept his feelings close to his chest. So has Craig, but now that they’ve graduated from UMKC, he knows it’s his last chance to show Mitchell they’re meant to be before their careers take them to opposite sides of the country.

 

He insists they can’t leave Missouri behind without one last adventure. Mitchell agrees to a road trip to visit all the touristy spots and say goodbye to their home state.

 

As they spend their days and nights together, buried feelings rise to the surface and hope blossoms. When their journey ends with a dance beneath the Branson stars, will they find love and a future together at the end of the road?

 

States of Love: Stories of romance that span every corner of the United States. 

Category: Contemporary, New Adult, States of Love (Missouri)

Pages: 98 (ebook)

About the Author

 

Sarah Hadley Brook lives smack-dab in the middle of the Heartland and is the mother of two wonderful young men, as well as two cats. During the day, she works in the nonprofit world, but reserves evenings for her hobby-turned-passion of writing, letting the characters she conjures in her mind take the lead and show her where the story will go. When not working or writing, she can be found reading, working on dollhouses, trying her hand at new recipes, or watching old movies and musicals. In her ideal world, Christmas would come at least twice a year, Rock Hudson and Doris Day would have costarred in more than three movies, and chocolate would be a daily necessity. She dreams of traveling to Scotland someday and visiting the places her ancestors lived. Sarah believes in “Happily Ever After” and strives to ensure her characters find their own happiness in love and life.

 

Website: http://www.sarahhadleybrookwrites.com

Email: contact@sarahhadleybrookwrites.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/sarahhadleybrookwrites

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/SHadleyBrook

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/SarahHadleyBrook

We Missed National Book Day? This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Apparently we here (well, me, haven’t talked to the others) missed National Book Day which was 2 or 3 days ago. Mea Culpa!  Of course, every day here at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is book day but I like to think we help to celebrate books every chance we get!  So I went looking for the actual information and found out lots about book celebrations throughout the year and  all over the world.  Pretty cool stuff actually.

And of course, thought you all should know about it.  So here it is.  And it helps me to remember that September is National Literacy Month.  We normally see Charity Anthologies appear to help support LGBTQIA youth in need during that month. LGBTQIA shelters, local PFLAG Youth YA libraries (yep, they exist), and so much more.  September will be here before you know it. So if you have any local shelters (addresses etc) to contribute, please send them in.  We keep a list going.

Book Day Celebrations – Days-Weeks and Months! These are the approximate dates as they can change every year:)

  • World Book Days by country
  • January is National Book Month
  • Third full week in January is National Book Week
  • Last full week in January is Celebrity Read a Book Week
  • February 23 – Printed Book Day
  • March 2 – Unesco World Book Day
  • March 2 – UK World Book Day
  • March 28 – Children’s Picture Book Day
  • April 2 – International Children’s Book Day
  • April 16 – Book-of-the-Month Club Birthday
  • April 23 – World Book Days by country
  • April 3 through May 6 – Children’s Book Week
  • June is AudioBook Month
  • September is National Literacy Month
  • September is when the annual 2 day National Book Festival is held
  • American Library Association (ALA) Banned Book Week is the last week of September
  • October is National Book Month per National Book Foundation
  • October is National Information Literacy Awareness Month
  • First full week in October is Great Books Week
  • December is Read a New Book Month

Saturday things Redux!

We sent out a call for reviewers.  Check out the post here.  And then contact either Stella or myself about reviewing for us. If you love books, this is the place to be!

Review Redux!  I reviewed Forged in Flood by Dahlia Donovan on Saturday.  I think it’s her finest story yet.  And it’s a tough one to read on many levels.  Three men, a triad, lost everything, when they drove drunk after graduating from university.  That subject matter alone will get people.  It cost them their future in rugby due to disabilities, and each other due to a deep abiding guilt, shame, rage, and more.  This is the story back to each other.  Just amazing.  Did I say it was only 130 pagesI have to agree that there seems to be a lot of diversity in this day and age than there was maybe five, ten, or fifteen years ago. There’s a lot of gay couples surfacing on tv dramas these days and in books asexual, pansexual, demisexual individuals are being written in as main characters and have their own stories whereas a several years ago those terms weren’t present in m/m fiction (well none of the fiction I read). Even in the media there are celebrities who are coming out as gay, pansexual, bi, etc.

Representation and Romance Stories.

We’ve been talking about the increasing LGBTQIA representation in fiction and here are some of the comments from two of our readers:

H.B. “I have to agree that there seems to be a lot of diversity in this day and age than there was maybe five, ten, or fifteen years ago. There’s a lot of gay couples surfacing on tv dramas these days and in books asexual, pansexual, demisexual individuals are being written in as main characters and have their own stories whereas a several years ago those terms weren’t present in m/m fiction (well none of the fiction I read). Even in the media there are celebrities who are coming out as gay, pansexual, bi, etc.”

Ami: “As an asexual and aromantic reader, it warms my heart that ACE/ARO have started to be represented in romantic fiction.

Having said that, I still feel that it is mostly focused ONLY in the LGBTQIA books or genre. In my own opinion, it’s not enough. Yes, ACE falls in the queer spectrum, but there are a number of ACE who also identify themselves as heteroromantic asexuals. I guess until I see more ace representatives in MF romance, not just Queer romance, I still think there’s room of improvements.

Lately, I see more “diversity” in mainstream romance more focused on race — meaning representing non-White people. I think it’ll be nice to see more MF romance with trans* as well, or heteroromantic pansexual, or even bisexual in MF romance.”

 

I agree with you both.  I want to see diversity as the norm, not as something we need to point at as a goal.  Or even to the point its past mentioning.  Wouldn’t that  be lovely?

Alas and alac…I can’t even get through an audiobook where someone states things like “acting like a teenage girl”.  Really?  Maybe teenagers, yes.  But   can’t we at least bury the sexist phrases?  I’m so done with stuff like that. “Maning up” “Acting like a girl”….all the poisonous ways we demean the sexes, divide the genders.  So maybe we still have a long way to go in a lot of ways.  But I will take whatever forward motion however miniscule.  Positivity!

Sigh.

Now to this  week at the blog.

This Week At Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, August 12:

  • This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
  • We Missed National Book Day?

Monday, August 13:

  • DSP Cover Reveal Gateway to Love by Sarah Hadley Brooke
  • DSP Dreamspun Promo Liv Olteano
  • Release Blitz – Michelle Woody’s Merrick The Art Thief
  • Release Day Blitz To See the Sun by Kelly Jensen
  • An Alisa Review An Arranged Mating by Jane Wallace-Knight
  • A MelanieM Audiobook Review: Love in Spades (Four Kings Security #1) by Charlie Cochet and  Greg Boudreaux (Narrator)
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Audiobook Review: A Courageous Ride (The Bullriders#3) by Andrew Grey and John Solo (Narrator)

Tuesday, August 14:

  • DSP Cover Reveal Calculated Magic by SJD Peterson
  • Release Blitz – Sky Full Of Mysteries – Rick R Reed
  • Release Blitz – Bitten By Her (Regent’s Park Pack #4.5) – Annabelle Jacobs
  • An Alisa Review:Exercising Restraint (Different Dynamics #2) by Tamir Drake
  • A VVivacious Review : Sky Full Of Mysteries by Rick R Reed
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Release Day Review: Super for You Bad for Me by Asta Idonea

Wednesday, August 15:

  • Something About Us by Riley Hart Release Blitz
  • Series Review Tour for Revving It Up Series by W.S. Long
  • Review Tour – Goal Line (Harrisburg Railers #6) by RJ Scott & V.L. Locey
  • Release Blitz –  Boyfriend Or Bust by Claire Castle
  • A MelanieM Review: Goal Line (Harrisburg Railers #6) by RJ Scott & V.L. Locey
  • An Ali  Review: To See the Sun by Kelly Jensen
  • A MelanieM Review: Gifts Given (Boystown #10) by Marshall Thornton

Thursday, August 16:

  • In the Spotlight Tour and Giveaway: To See The Sun by Kelly Jensen
  • DSP Publications Promo Jayne Lockwood
  • Promo Jackie North on Shoulder Season (World of Love)
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Salt Magic Skin Magic by Lee Welch
  • A Lucy Audiobook Review: Love You so Hard (Love You So Stories #1) by Tara Lain and Narrator: Ry Forest / Stephen Kurpis (Vitruvian Sound)
  • A MelanieM Review:  Shotgun Bastards and Other Stories by Andrea Speed

Friday, August 17:

  • DSP Promo Sean Michael
  • DSP Promo Charley Descoteaux
  • Blog Tour Don’t Let Go by Andrew Grey
  • An Alisa Release Day Review: Tempt Me by Remmy Duchene
  • A Lucy Review: Challenging Chance (Love Letters #3) by Anyta Sunday

Saturday, August 18:

  • Blog Tour for Euphoria by Jayne Lockwood
  • A MelanieM Review: Euphoria by Jayne Lockwood

—— Reviewers Wanted——

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—— Reviewers Wanted——

 

 

Love to read?  Want to share your opinion with other readers on the stories you’ve read?  Find a new author you absolutely adore?  These are the things we want our reviewers to share with our readers….

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is looking for a few reviewers to join our happy international family of reviewers and wonder if it could be you!  All genres. all book formats, audio and ebook, and all parts of the  Rainbow spectrum….we want you.

Never reviewed before?  Look at one of our reviews  to see the format we use.  It’s also written up under Rating Scale and Review Info.  Send us a sample of a review of a book you’ve recently read to scatteredthoughtsandroguewords@gmail.com

Review as little or as much as your schedule allows. We are flexible.  Contact Melanie or Stella at the email address above.

We are happy to answer your questions!

A Caryn Release Day Review: Shoulder Season (World of Love) by Jackie North

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Rating: 2 out of 5 stars

The idea behind Dreamspinner’s “World of Love:  Stories of romance that span every corner of the globe” series is sound, and actually pretty exciting.  Combining exotic locales that most of us would love to see (but probably won’t) with a sweet romance is very attractive.  This one, unfortunately, was somewhat disappointing – I got the impression that the author had never even visited Reykjavik, much less put in some serious research into it….

Ben is an American, a recently graduated engineer from Colorado who has been working as a mechanic because he couldn’t get a better job.  His boyfriend, rich, and oh, BTW, a complete douche, broke up with him right before a planned vacation to Munich, and so Ben decided since he already had the time off and a passport that he would go somewhere else.  Reykjavik, Iceland was cheap because it was October, the shoulder season, and Ben thought it sounded like as good of a place as any.  Until he arrived, and he immediately started wondering what the heck he was thinking, to go so far away from home, alone, with no idea what he would even do when he got there.

It was cold and raining, and Ben was literally standing at the front door of the apartment he had rented thinking of how he could arrange to fly back home the next day, when a cab dropped off a beautiful nordic looking man with a sling and cane whom Ben dubbed the “Icelandic god” right next door to him.  As Ben walked in to his apartment, he heard a crash from next door, and rushed over to help.

Solvin had been injured in a car accident, and though he was still recuperating, he had decided to stay in Reykjavik alone rather than moving back in with family.  He didn’t want to need help, but he had to admit that it was pretty convenient that Ben was available, and willing, and it just seemed natural to start hanging out, and to show Ben the city.

Unfortunately, that is about as good as it got.  Ben kept thinking about the douchey ex, and endlessly comparing him to the perfect Icelandic god that was Solvin, but instead of making Solvin look good, it just started convincing me that Ben was a doormat and an idiot for staying as long as he did.  Americans were stereotyped as loud and obnoxious and the worst kind of tourists, Icelanders were stereotyped as calm and “nice” in a way that just made them sound boring.  Ben and Solvin hit all the touristy spots of Reykjavik, and it felt like a poorly written travelogue more than anything – I swear I learned more about Iceland from watching Bizarre Foods on the Travel Channel than I did reading this book.  The author spent a lot of time justifying why “nice” was a virtue, and so much better than “exciting” and that bothered me because I don’t agree that the two are mutually exclusive.  And don’t even get me started on the ending – I get that books in this series are supposed to be sweet HEAs, but this ending was over the top unrealistic mush.

Cover art by Brooke Albrecht is really pretty!  The Northern Lights sold me on Iceland, but I have to say the model looked like he came from a California beach, not Iceland.

Sales Links:  Dreamspinner Press | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 84 pages
Expected publication: August 10th 2018 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN13 9781640806153
Edition Language English
setting Iceland