Pride Month Continues with Readers Recommended Best Coming Out Stories! This Week At Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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Pride Month Continues with A Winner Announcement

 

June continues and so does Pride Month celebrations!  We have had some wonderful comments and book suggestions for Best Coming Out stories. I’m going to put them all into a list and have them up by the last Sunday this month. Here’s  some of the wonderful comments and recs we’ve had:

Readers Recommended Best Coming Out Stories!

✒︎From H.B.:

“I’ve never been to a Pride event but it sounds like something fun and exciting to support.
My favorite stories that have characters coming out are:
Knight of Ocean Avenue by Tara Lain
Ready For Love by Stella Starling
Falling Together by SK (Shelley) Grayson
#gaymers series by Annabeth Albert
Thanks a Lot, John LeClair by Johanna Parkhurst
Patient Eyes by Andy Eisenberg

H.B. has several of my favorites there. Knight of Ocean Avenue by Tara Lain and the #gaymers series by Annabeth Albert.  H.B. also has some I’m going to have to look up. Yay!

✒︎From Didi:

“Happy Pride Month to everyone of queer spectrum. A few of coming out titles that stay in my head are Kaje Harper’s Life Lessons, Josh Lanyon’s Death of A Pirate King, also John Goode’s Tales from Foster High. On the first two titles the coming out might not be the main issue of the story, but it’s something that affected the character deeply and overall emotionally engaging to me.”

Didi hit all 3 of mine, including a favorite Josh Lanyon series!

✒︎Purple Reader came through with a book I haven’t read either (so my list grows). Here’s what he has to say:

“DC is one of my fav cities for a couple special reasons. I’m not from there, but on a trip 15 yrs ago that’s where I came out (so you could say that’s my fav coming out story :-); and on another trip that’s where I proposed to my husband. Oh my, a fav novel about coming out? So many, and as always I like to go for beyond the norm. So one fav is “Mysterious Skin.” With its coming of age there’s self-awareness/coming out to oneself as well as others, and it deals with tough issues, but that it all the more poignant.”

That’s Mysterious Skin by Scott Heim.  I’ve got a GR link included.

✒︎Suze294 also chimed in with an all time favorite of mine Sean Kennedy.

Tigers and Devils by Sean Kennedy! One day I plan to get to a Pride event – probably Manchester or Liverpool as closest”

✒︎Ardent Reader surprised me with one of the first m/m books I ever read on her lists (non fan fiction that is).  Here is Ardent Reader’s list:

“A few of my favorite stories that have coming themes are: My Summer of Wes– Missy Welsh, Christmas Kitsch by Amy Lane, The Catch Trap-Marion Zimmer Bradley

Because of the great response, we are going to pick 2 winners this week!  They are Ardent EReader and waxapplelover!  Congratulations!  You both win a $10 Dreamspinner gift certificate.  Stella will be in touch with you both shortly.  The rest of the comments, recommendations and full list will be up next Sunday.

Now for this week’s giveaway to finish up Pride Month!

 

Pride Father’s Day Celebration Giveaway!

Give us your best suggestions for books involving LGBTQIA families or LGBT people with children stories.  I just finished last week’s wonderful Accepting The Fall by Meg Harding, with firefighter Zander Brooks learning to cope with fatherhood as the parent of a bright, frightened 5 year old.  Terrific story.  And Dragon Home by Mell Eight with William, the foster parent of two growing dragons kits (a whole different set of parenting skills required there).  But I know there are soooo many out there!  Let’s start a list!

So for Father’s Day, what books melted your heart?  That had children, maybe puppies or kittens or both?  Amy Lane’s Promises series just jumps to my mind.  What comes into yours?  Ones that break your heart and then puts them back together again.  Stories you never forget because your heart won’t let them go….

Tell me which ones you love and let’s share our favorites.  A random reader who leaves a comment or readers (you never know here) will receive a $10 gift certificate.  Dreamspinner Press or Amazon, your choice.    Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.  Happy Pride Month.   Giveaway ends midnight June 30th.  Winners announced July 1st.

 

 

 

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, June 18:

  • Pride Month Continues with Readers Recommended Best Coming Out Stories!
    Winner Announcement.
  • This Week At Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Monday, June 19:

  • Release Day Blitz for Drama Queens and Devilish Schemes by Kevin Klehr
  • Review Tour: The Great North (A Legendary Love Book 1) by J. Scott Coatsworth
  • Release Blitz & Review Tour – Better Than Suicide (The Yakuza Path #2) by Amy Tasukada
  • A Stella Release Day Review:  Love Wanted by John Inman
  • A MelanieM Release Week Review: The Great North (A Legendary Love Book 1) by J. Scott Coatsworth
  • A MelanieM Review: Better Than Suicide (The Yakuza Path #2) by Amy Tasukada
  • An Alisa Review: Chasing His Cottontail (Hoppity Shifter #1) by A.R. Barley

Tuesday, June 20:

  • In the Spotlight: Chief’s Mess (Anchor Point #3) by L.A. Witt (Riptide Publishing Tour & Giveaway)
  • Blog Tour for Sum of the Whole by Brenda Murphy
  • A MelanieM Review: The Monet Murders (The Art of Murder #2) by Josh Lanyon
  • A VVivacious Review:  Reckless Passion (Reckless #3) by Amanda Young
  • AN Alisa Review:  Romancing the Bouncer by J.D. Walker
  • An Alisa Audiobook Review: The Deep of the Sound (Bluewater Bay #8) by Amy Lane and Nick J. Russo (Narrator)

Wednesday, June 21:

  • Review Tour for Enlightenment Series by Joanna Chambers
  • Blog Tour for Strong Enough by Melanie Harlow & David Romanov
  • Blog Tour for Queer Magick by L.C. Davis
  • A Caryn Review: Beguiled  (Enlightenment Series #2) by Joanna Chambers
  • A Caryn Review: Provoked (Enlightenment Series #1) by Joanna Chambers
  • A Caryn Review: Enlightened  (Enlightenment Series #3) by Joanna Chambers
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: Patron by C.B. Lewis

Thursday, June 22:

  • DSP guest blog SA Stovall on Vice City
  • Release Day Blitz for A Way with Words by Lane Hayes
  • DSP GUEST POST Sean Michael on The Dom’s Way
  • A MelanieM Review: Fair Chance (All’s Fair #3) by Josh Lanyon
  • A VVivacious Review: Sex in C Major by  Matthew J. Metzger
  • An Alisa Review: Forest of Thorns and Claws by JT Hall
  • An Ali Audiobook Review: The Interborough (A Five Boroughs Story) by Santino Hassell and Michael Ferraiuolo (Narrator)

Friday, June 23:

  • Blog Tour for  Kevin Corrigan and Me by Jeré M. Fishback
  • Release Blitz for RJ Scott’s Kingdom Series Vol 2
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Release Day Review: A Kind of Home (A Kind of Stories #4) by Lane Hayes
  • A Jeri Release Day Review: The Dom’s Way (Iron Eagle Gym #5) by Sean Michael
  • A MelanieM Review:Kingdom Series Vol 1 by RJ Scott
  • A MelanieM Review: Winter Kill by Josh Lanyon
  • An Ali Review: Mai Tais and Murder by J.C.Long

Saturday, June 24:

  • Release Blitz  for  Scrap (The Bristol Collection #3) by Josephine Myles
  • A MelanieM Review: Scrap (The Bristol Collection #3) by Josephine Myles

 

 

 

 

A MelanieM Release Day Review: THE TAKEDOWN (Superpowered Love #8) by Katey Hawthorne

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

 

Jody Aguirre’s family was kidnapped and tortured by witch hunters. After a few days of captivity, he’s all that’s left. Using his frosty awakened superpowers, Jody manages to escape and is rescued from the side of the road by Bren Faulkner’s stretch Town Car. Bren, a hot-thermal awakened with government connections, promises to help find the witch hunters who destroyed Jody’s life.

While navigating his trauma and pain, Jody comes to rely on Bren for more than just food, his house, and his superpowered connections. Brendan is all that reminds Jody what’s left to live for, and a strong advocate for justice vs. vengeance, like the proverbial knight in shining armor he is. As their affection for one another deepens and their attraction becomes impossible to deny, Bren wonders if acting on their feelings would be taking advantage. Jody, meanwhile, struggles to claw his way back to something like normality, knowing that Bren’s part of the solution, not the problem.

But none of it matters, if they don’t take down those witch hunters.

I  have loved Katey Hawthorne’s Superpowered Love series from the very first story Equilibrium (Superpowered Love #1) where the author introduced her superpowered humans called “the awakened”, each having a different elemental power (fire, water, electricity, etc.).  Unknown to the general human population, they are hunted by a faction called witch hunters and protected by an Awakened Force working with the FBI.  The Takedown is an emotionally intense story, dealing as it does with an horrific event in one young man’s life.    Happy, getting ready to graduate from college, Jody’s life goes to hell in one gruesome, nightmarish day.

While we aren’t there for the actual event where Jody’s father is killed, and he and his mother are kidnapped, we are for Jody’s harrowing escape.  Hawthorne jumps us into Jody’s plight and into his head, on the run, scared, doped up and in shock.  We stay that way for some time, along with Jody.  Even when picked up by Bren Faulkner, the trauma Jody has suffered has had consequences far past the physical ones he’s suffered. I’m talking the mental and emotional ones, PTSD, acute anxiety and more.  All this is treated here within the story as it should be for someone who has undergone such an atrocity. Plus it’s still going on as all the members responsible are still at large.  Thus the title, The Takedown.  For Jody is determined to bring down those who destroyed his family at all costs, even if it’s himself.  Something Bren is not ok with for reasons obvious and veiled.

We get Jody, we really do.  We can understand his need for revenge and the compulsion to narrow his life down to just the hunt.  Then there’s Bren Faulkner.

Bren Faulkner is a special character, one with many surprises for both the reader and Jody.  Bren has his own reasons for staying away from any romantic complications involving Jody no matter how hard it may be getting.  I loved the part where Bren turns out to be hot-thermal to Jody’s cold, a delicious touch. He’s also older than Jody, which gives Jody a strong support when he needs it the most.  Bren has as many layers and doubts about his role in Jody’s life as Jody does.  How that is worked out is something not to be resolved until the end, which I thought was smart indeed.  Too much else going on in between these two and around them for anything else to feel authentic and believable.

I loved the actual takedown part!  If I could “fist bump” the author and yell “hell yes” I would have.  It was suspenseful and Jody got his answers.  Perfect.

If you haven’t started the Superpowered Love series, I suppose you could read this story, but you would be lacking some necessary background information I find important to the novel.  Far better to start at the beginning and working your way through (don’t miss Riot Boy or Losing Better…love them)!  I recommend them all, including the free reads!

Cover Artist: PL Nunn does another splendid job with the cover.

Sales Links:  Loose Id and Amazon,

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 189 pages
Expected publication: June 6th 2017 by Loose Id LLC
ASINB071W9TVQW
SeriesSuperpowered Love #8

June is LGBTQIA Pride Month! This Week At Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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June is LGBTQIA Pride Month!

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is celebrating Pride Month! 

Its no surprise that Trump broke with Obama’s tradition of designating June as ‘LGBT Pride Month! But the majority of organizations, groups and government agencies recognize it as such!

Writer Peter LaBarbera in his article on Pride Month writes ” As LifeSiteNews reported last week, the U.S. Army Surgeon General and Commanding General of the Army Medical Command, Lt. Gen. Nadja West, issued an “LGBT Pride Month” statement.

Earlier, the State Department posted a pro-homosexual “pride” essay on its website, and U.S. Embassy in Macedonia flew the homosexual-activist “rainbow flag” beneath Old Glory to celebrate an annual LGBTQ activist day. (Under Obama, American Embassies from Spain to Israel repeatedly flew the homosexuality-celebrating flag abroad in this manner.)”

Our support for the LGBTQIA community has never been needed more.  Get involved, march, show support! There’s so many ways in which to do this!

From Equality Now to the Matthew Shepard Foundation, to all the wonderful Pride Parades soon to come, let’s celebrate the right to love who you want, be who you want with equal rights and respect you are due.  Happy Pride Month!

Pride Month Giveaway #1 – Coming Out Stories

To start off our Pride Month Celebration, Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is having a Coming Out Giveaway.  Enter to win a $10 gift certificate from Dreamspinner Press by naming your favorite coming out story!  Author and title please.  A winner will be chosen at random on Saturday, June 17th (that’s 2 weeks). You need to leave your email address where you can be reached if chosen.  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, June 4:

  • Blog Tour – Unexpected Powers by Chris McHart
  • An Alisa Audiobook Review: Wake Me Up Inside by Cardeno C and Charlie David (Narrator)
  • A Free Dreamer Review Seidman by James Erich
  • June is LGBTQIA Pride Month! This Week At Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Monday, June 5:

  • Blog Tour Waiting for You by Megan Derr
  • Release Blitz IT COULD HAPPEN by Mia Kerick
  • Release Day Blitz Painting Class by Suzanne Clay
  • Review Tour Request & Giveaway: RJ Scott’s Back Home
  • A Kai Release Day Review: It Could Happen by Mia Kerick
  • A Melanie M Review: Back Home by RJ Scott
  • A Stella Review: Tradeoff by Susan Laine
  • An Ali Audiobook Review: There’s This Guy by Rhys Ford

Tuesday, June 6:

  • Katey Hawthorne Release Day Blog for THE TAKEDOWN (Superpowered Love #8)
  • Release Blitz – Something Like The Real Thing (Sing Out #4) by Hanna Dare
  • RIPTIDE TOUR & Giveaway: Broke Deep by Charlie Cochrane
  • A MelanieM Review: Junk (Bristol Collection #1) by Josephine Myles
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: THE TAKEDOWN (Superpowered Love #8) by Katey Hawthorne
  • An Ali Audiobook Review: A Kind of Honesty (A Kind of Stories #3) by Lane Hayes and Seth Clayton (Narrator)

Wednesday, June 7:

  • Cover & Blurb Reveal – Changing Lines by RJ Scott & V.L. Locey
  • DSP GUEST POST Julia Talbot
  • RIPTIDE TOUR and Giveaway: Action by Quinn Anderson
  • A Lila Audiobook Review: Perfect Alignment (Thorne and Dash #3) by Silvia Violet
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: Sunset at Pencarrow (World of Love) by Lou Sylvre and Anne Barwell
  • An Ali Review: Action (Murmur Inc. #2) by Quinn Anderson
  • An Alisa Review: Human Instincts (Roguefalls #1) by April Kelley

Thursday, June 8:

  • DSP GUEST POST Jamie Samms
  • Release Blitz – Accepting The Fall by Meg Harding
  • DSP GUEST POST Lou Sylvre and Anne Barwell on Sunset at Pencarrow
  • A Caryn Review: To Love a Traitor by JL Merrow
  • A Kai Review: Conning Colin: A Gay Romantic Comedy by Elsa Winters & Brad Vance
  • A MelanieM Recent Release Review: The Wounded Warrior (Rocking W #1) by B.A. Tortuga
  • An Alisa Review: My Highland Cowboy by Alexa Milne

Friday, June 9:

  • DSP GUEST POST Susan Laine on Tradeoff
  • INTERLUDE PRESS TOUR Grrrls on the Side by Carrie Pack
  • Release Blitz for Spring Break by Elle Keaton
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Road To The Sun by Keira Andrews
  • An Alisa Release Day Review: Growing His Dream by Andrew Grey
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Draakenwood (Whyborne & Griffin #9) by Jordan L. Hawk
  • An Alessandro Audiobook Review: As You Wish (Shatterproof Bond #1) by Isobel Starling and Gary Furlong (Narrator)

Saturday, June 10:

  • Release Blitz for Stuff (The Bristol Collection #2) Josephine Myles
  • Release Blitz for  Summer Heat by Jay Northcote
  • A MelanieM Review: Stuff (The Bristol Collection #2) by Josephine Myles
  • A MelanieM Recent Release Review: Dragon Adventure (Supernatural Consultant #5.1) by Mell Eight

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A MelanieM Recent Release Review: Hawaiian Fragrance (The Hawaiians 3) by Meg Amor

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Rating: 5 stars out of 5

Danny’s a fourth-generation Big Islander from the wealthy Lucerno ranching family. He’s gorgeous–a mix of Portuguese male and Argentine passion, all dark-haired, smoldering sensuality. His family disowned him for being gay, and now he’s part of the Masterson-Mahikoa “lost boys” family.

When he meets the wealthy, sophisticated, sensuous Brazilian, Paolo Bastini, he’s swept off his feet into a glitzy Las Vegas lifestyle of money and luxury–the world he grew up in. But it takes Danny away from Hawai’i where his soul roams free and his family lives. He struggles as Paolo plays loosely with their partnership and thinks Danny is being “a baby” for wanting a monogamous relationship. And who is this past lover firmly wedged in Paolo’s heart?

Zane is severely deaf–finding new dance partners is hard. When he loses another one, Danny steps in to dance the tango competitions with him. Jealousy flares and things reach dangerous levels between Paolo and Danny. His adopted and birth family must bond together in a daring rescue of Danny from the depths of Brazil.

But he’s not completely out of danger. Now he’s fighting an attraction to the feminine Zane, who’s always annoyed him. Which man has his heart?

Well, here we are on book 3 of The Hawaiians and if you’ve been following my reviews, you know that I’m completely and utterly gone on these stories.  Totally besotted!  Hawaiian Fragrance just adds another layer of love.  Its Danny’s story.  Danny Lucerno is one of the “lost boys” of the Masterson-Mahikoa household, a group of older throwaway teens that one by one were found and gathered under one roof by Kulani Mahikoa (the Orchid).  It’s now a two dad household with Rob Masterson added (Hawaiian Lei).  Of course, in Meg Amor’s universe, no one is an island, literally. So while it is Danny’s story, its also Zane’s (another throwaway) and Zane’s connection to Danny,  Danny’s past tumultuous relationship (non existent at the present) with his birth parents as he calls them and the new man in his life, Paolo, who his family isn’t all that comfortable with.  So we get Danny, Zane, the twins (how I love them), Kulani and Rob, Matty and Beau, everyone who’s entwined in the lives of the Masterson-Mahikoa family.  The family dynamics, as complex as they are loving, have a real family feel to them.  Danny is older but when Rob and Kulani are arguing about Paolo and his relationship with Danny, the love and decisions on how to handle the situation feel both “fatherly” and responsible while still treating Danny as an adult.  I love the way the different situations are worked through here, the communication avenue is left open to the teens, letting them know at all times they are loved and safe, no matter their age.

Another thing I can’t get enough of?  The author’s love of Hawaii and her ability to envelope her readers with her deep affection by way of her vivid descriptions of the flora, fauna and locations around the BI.  It’s lush and tropical and I can almost see and smell the beautiful aromas coming through the pages…

I pull out from Banyans and drive us out to Honaunau on the South Kona coast. In the small town of Kainaliu, I stop and buy us a pink can each of Pass-O-Guava Nectar-POG-at Oshima Drug’s. Zane points at the “buying cherry” signs for the ripe red coffee berry, and we both fill our lungs and exhale loudly, laughing. We always do this when they’re roasting Kona coffee, and the rich scent fills the air. If we continue along Mamalahoa Highway, we’ll get whiffs of fresh hot oil frying local Kona Chips too but today we wind down Napo’opo’o Road.

I love this road; it always relaxes me. Lush jacarandas snow their purple blossoms everywhere, and the flaming orange flowers of the poincianas are popping. There’s thick tropical growth either side of the road, towering avocado trees, coffee farms, and ocean views around every curve, all the way down the hill.

We cut across the flat bottom road to Honaunau. It’s a good time of the day to be here. Not many people getting into the water at Two Step, mostly just locals catching a late afternoon swim or snorkel. The energy will be good for Zane too.

 

Ah, the combination of Danny and Zane.  Its Danny’s story, but it needs Zane too.  Zane’s deaf so his speech here is that of someone who is deaf.  No it doesn’t take any getting use to and in the acknowledgement and dedication, Amor explains the speech pattern she uses for Zane and the friend  she based Zane’s speech pattern on “… Janet from years ago who had never worn hearing aids. Sam heavily consulted on this book and the upcoming Hawaiian Ginger to give accurate portrayals of sounds, speech, and things that go wrong with hearing aids.”  To me, it makes Zane that much more authentic and real.  I love Zane and together with Danny, they have become two of my favorite character in this series.

Danny has a lot of things to work out here, emotionally, intellectually.  Parts of this story are suspenseful, gripping and gut wrenching.  I was not expecting that in this story.  Plus Amor throws in the wonderful element of dance.  Zane is a dancer, but so is someone else, totally unexpected. The beauty of expression and desire of a certain Latin dance is explored here and it’s so well done.  There were so many surprises here.

Really, the characters are so beautifully written, the storylines incredible and the locations from BI to Las Vegas to places I can’t tell you without spoiling it are wild, real and will make you want to take flight and be there (mostly).

Hawaiian Fragrance (The Hawaiians 3) by Meg Amor is a deep joy of a book.  Its has romance, family, suspense, and the possibility of a new love on the horizon.  It ends like a Fred and Ginger movie, lightly, lovingly, and getting us ready for the next one in the series, Hawaiian Ginger which is Zane’s story.  I have it now in my hands.  Review coming soon!  But if you haven’t found or started any of these great books yet, get started!  I love this  whole series and the author has promised more to come.  I highly recommend them all.

Cover art by Syneca Featherstone is again gorgeous and as lush as Hawaii itself.

Sales Links:  Loose id LLC | AMAZON

Book Details:

ebook
Published May 2nd 2017 by Loose Id
ISBN13 9781682523568

Hawaiian Lei (The Hawaiians, #1)

Hawaiian Orchid (The Hawaiians, #2)

Hawaiian Fragrance (The Hawaiians, #3)

Hawaiian Ginger (The Hawaiians, #4) coming soon

Time for Remembrance – Memorial Weekend. This Week At Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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Time for Remembrance – Memorial Weekend

With the sound of Roaring Thunder still echoing in my ears as they passed by on their way to the District,  it’s time to remember and honor those that have given their lives for their country and freedom, protecting those here and around the world.  Those fallen on the field of Flanders, Khe Sanh,  Gettysburg or Helmand Province, you will always be remembered.

Literature, whether novels or poetry,  is a powerful tool to keep memories alive, evoke the emotions, the pain, the hopes and fears, the bravery behind those that go off to war, no matter the year or war, controversy or no.  Siegfried Sassoon or Walt Whitman, John McCrae’s Field of Flanders (seen above) to all the anonymous poems and letters left at the Vietnam Veterans War Memorial in Washington, DC (gathered up daily by volunteers to be stored and/or displayed at the museum).  I’ve included one such poem here as well.  They touch at the heart, the mind, the soul.  They make us remember.    It’s Memorial Weekend.  Do you have a favorite poem you could share?

Remembrance Day Poems To Remember The Fallen | HuffPost UK

Posted on The Wall Site for Cpl Brent R Jones. 


The Stranger

One lovely summer day
As I was walking through the grass
Reflecting on the very fondest
Memories of my past

I past an unfamiliar place
And stopped a while to see
Completely unsuspecting
Of the change this place would bring

I stood before a wall of names
Two hundred and fifty-one
Engraved upon a monument
That pierced the shining sun

And though, to all these names
I was a stranger passing by
I looked upon these names
And there was one that caught my eye

It may have been a moment
Or an hour, or a year
I walked up to the name
And leaned in close so I could hear

I closed my eyes and listened
To the pure and priceless truth
And came to understand the love
Of which, this wall is proof

It’s said that he who bears
The very greatest love of all
Will sacrifice his life
Before He’ll see a dear friend fall

Though people often wonder
Whether such a man is real
I see him now
Through these engraven letters that I feel

He’s sitting with his brother
telling stories as they laugh
Of the greatest game’s he’ll ever pitch
Of the biggest fish he’ll catch

He’s standing by his colors
On a hillside far away
He’s diving through the amber fire
While others run away

I search through all my memories
Of the noble and the grand
The courage and the truth
That I’ve been taught to understand

Of all the stories that are told
This shall be told of you
Dear Soldier, How you gave your life
For those you never knew.

This poem was written by Callie Crofts, Firth High School class of 2004.
Sunday, March 27, 2005

This Week At Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, May 28:

  • Release Blitz for  Nell Iris’s Find His Way Home
  • This Week at Scattered Thoughts ad Rogue Words
  • Time for Remembrance – Memorial Weekend

Monday May 29

  • Release Day Blitz and Giveaway for Performance Review by Tamryn Eradani
  • DSP Publications GUEST POST Bradley Lloyd on Shadow Fray (Shadow Fray: Round One)
  • DSP GUEST POST Ari Mckay on Breaking Bonds 
  • A Caryn Review:  Concourse (Five Boroughs #5) by Santino Hassell
  • A MelanieM Review: Law of Love by Bob Masters
  • A VVivacious Review: Lion’s Mate (Hell’s Creek #1) by Shannon West & T.S. McKinney
  • An Alessandro Audiobook Review: Willow Man by John Inman and Austin Rising (Narrator)

Tuesday, May 30:

  • RIPTIDE TOUR &  Giveaway: Heels Over Head by Elyse Springer
  • DSP GUEST POST L.A. Merrill on Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch (States of Love)
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Slow Heat by Leta Blake
  • An Ali Review: Heels Over Head by Elyse Springer
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: Shadow Fray (Shadow Fray: Round One) by Bradley Lloyd
  • A Stella Review: Back to You by Chris Scully

Wednesday, May 31:

  • Release Day Blitz and Giveaway for Frank at Heart by Pat Henshaw
  • Retro Review Tour – Suki Fleet’s This Is Not A Love Story
  • DSP GUEST POST Z Allora On Writing, Books and Secured and Free
  • A Free Dreamer Review: This Is Not A Love Story by Suki Fleet
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review:Frank at Heart (Foothills Pride #6) by Pat Henshaw
  • An Alisa Release Day Review:  Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch (States of Love) by L.A. Merrill
  • An Alisa Review: Hybrid (A Darker Hollow #1) by Shannon West & T.S. McKinney

Thursday, June 1:

  • Release Blitz for  The Ties that Bind by S. Davidson
  • DSP GUEST POST : Tara Lain on Return of the Chauffeur’s Son
  • Blog Tour Permanent Jet Lag by A.N. Casey
  • A Lila Review: Whiskey Business (States of Love) by Avon Gale
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Audiobook Review: The Mystery of Nevermore (Snow & Winter: Book One) by C.S. Poe
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review:  Breaking Bonds (The Walker Boys 2) by Ari McKay
  • An Alisa Review: Smitten by R.W. Clinger

Friday, June 2:

  • RIPTIDE TOUR and Giveaway: Fraud Twice Felt by JT Hall
  • Blog Tour: Return of the Chauffeur’s Son by Tara Lain
  • A Jeri Release Day Review: Return of the Chauffeur’s Son by Tara Lain
  • A MelanieM Review: Hawaiian Fragrance (The Hawaiians 3) by Meg Amor
  • An Ali Review : False Start (Wilmington Breakers #2) by Sloan Johnson
  • An Alisa Review: To Touch You (Mates #4) by Cardeno C.

Saturday, June 3:

  • Release Blitz His Master by Bink Cummings
  • A MelanieM Review: Seduced by the Tide by Sean Michael

A MelanieM Review: Hawaiian Orchid (The Hawaiians 2) by Meg Amor

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Rating: 5 stars out of 5

 

Kulani is “The Orchid,” a young, insecure, pro-surfer who comes from a rough background on the Big Island of Hawai’i. He’s Beau Toyama’s cousin from Hawaiian Lei. But he’s also a healer and has a heart as deep as the ocean he’s part of. Like the great Hawaiians, who have gone before him, warrior Kulani Mahikoa epitomizes the spirit of aloha and love. Kulani’s not only healing his own wounds, but “The Lost Boys”—young, homeless, abandoned and abused gay boys he’s taken under his wing.

Rob Masterson is a wounded psychologist who’s trying to come to terms with his husband Tony’s death. When he died, they were separated but still living together. Can the lone and lonely New Zealand widower reconcile all the pieces of guilt and love, to heal and fall in love again? When he drops anchor in Kona Harbor and meets the exotic islander—young, bolshie Kulani—explosive heat makes sparks fly between them.

Is the age difference between them a barrier or something they’ll get past? Kulani has more layers than Rob ever bargained for. And Rob’s tangled knot of responsibility, grief and guilt with his New Zealand heritage and past life is something he needs to untangle.

Two wounded men have to learn to trust and love one another. Traveling between the South Sea Islands of beautiful New Zealand and the exotic Hawaiian Islands—they forge a sea change, finding a home for their shrapnel laced souls.

I discovered Meg Amor through the first terrific book in this series, Hawaiian Lei. Hawaiian Orchid (The Hawaiians 2) by Meg Amor cemented the fact that I’ve found something incredibly special, in this series and in this amazing author. From that forward where I learned the author had suffered two losses central to her heart, she brought that pain and loss to this story, making it ours through the character of Rob.  All the way, from the first sentence through to the dictionary at the end, Meg Amor held me captive by a tale layered in the need and search for love in all its aspects, from romantic to familial.  It does so within a deep and encompassing framework of various Pacific Island cultures and religions, the spirituality flowing through the storylines like a healer’s chant.  It takes place not only on the Big Island (BI) of Hawaii but also in New Zealand as Rob searches for closure for himself and a start anew finally with Kulani. For Kulani, he’s looking for acceptance, healing, and love too.  It’s his journey as well. This is a big story, big in heart, big in scale and the author makes this vast narrative intimate in emotion and connectivity for the reader.

Rob Masterson is a complex character. He’s older than Kulani, wounded by the loss of his husband, torn and beaten in ways by the way in which his marriage was ending and the way his husband died. Rob hasn’t healed when he meets Kulani, a gorgeous younger man.  Rob immediately recognizes in Kulani someone with wounds as deep or deeper than his but there’s an attraction between them than neither can resist.  Kulani is a character full of surprises for us and Rob.  That initial meeting of a sullen, young man lays the right superficial impression for the author to blow us away with the depths of pain and beauty awaiting below the surface.  She peels away the first layer slowly for Rob and us as Kulani slowly begins to open up and show his true self, only for Rob to realize how much he’s been holding back himself. Amor makes us believe in each man.  Their pain, sometimes awkwardness (Kulani’s), abruptness (Rob’s), and tenderness to and for each other is vivid, authentic and real.  So is the steps they take, forward and back,  towards a relationship.  It includes help and support from a number of other characters, including Beau and Matt from Hawaiian Lei and even their respective parents.  Again, the relationship dynamics here are complex and real.  And they make the story.

Now this story also contains a third element I won’t go into here.  It sets the stage for the third book in this series, Hawaiian Fragrance (The Hawaiians #3) which I’m going to read and review next.  Going into it here would I believe spoil something wonderful so I’m leaving it out.  But again, this aspect of the story, again just elevates Hawaiian Orchid and this series into another realm for me, that of the comfort read and the story I’ll read again and again.

The mysticism and spiritualism present in the first story is still here, toned down somewhat but it flows through as naturally as breathing air.  So beautifully done you might not even notice how deeply ingrained it is for these men and families.  But it’s there, especially in the reading Rob has done for him, one more important necessary step in the healing process for him.  Plus there are other elements that appear in the story as well, folded in so easily that I believed in them as much as Rob and Kulani.

This is an incredible story.  I highly recommend it as I do the one that starts the series. Hawaiian Orchid (The Hawaiians 2) by Meg Amor will be on my Best of List this year and it’s highly likely the series will as well.  Hawaiian Fragrance is next.  There’s something else you might want to look at! There’s a link here to the Hawaiian Orchid page on Meg Amor’s website. It contains more information on the meaning of the different orchids, the characters, the big island of Hawaii and much more.  Check it out!

Cover artist:  Syneca Featherstone. I just love these covers.  Beautiful and as lush as the islands themselves, the men are perfect!

 

Sales Links:  Amazon |    Loose Id LLC

 

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 302 pages
Published September 15th 2015 by Loose Id LLC
ASINB015G3F1N6
Edition LanguageEnglish
Series The Hawaiians :

May Flowers and This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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May Flowers

After my blog last week, May flowers are taking up all my time this Sunday.  Yesterday was garden time prep and today is planting.  So its short and sweet today.  Thanks to all the comments, its been certainly dreary enough for lots of reading, crocheting and other indoor pastimes!  Hopefully now I can catchup outdoors too!

Melanie’s Soppy Garden Contest

The winner of my giveaway is Ami!  Congratulations, Ami, Stella will be in touch about your gift card!

Now onto this week’s schedule!  More next week I promise!  Is that June I see peering around the corner?  Oh my!

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, May 21:

  • This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
  • Release Blitz Lace by KC Wells

Monday, May 22:

  • Blog Tour The Lure of Port Stephen by Sydney Blackburn
  • DSP GUEST POST Sean Michael on Golden
  • Release Day Blitz Drama Queens and Adult Themes by Kevin Klehr
  • Surrender the Dark Blog Tour (M/M Contemporary Romance)
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review:Surrender the Dark  (M/M Contemporary Romance)
  • An Alisa Audiobook Review: In Your Eyes​ by Cardeno C and Charlie David (Narrator)
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review:  Farlough by Xavier Mayne
  • A MelanieM Review: How We Operate By A.R. Moler
  • An Ali Release Day Review: Lochlann by Andrea Speed

Tuesday, May 23:

  • Blog Tour Frozen Heart by Heidi Cullinan
  • DSP GUEST POST Laura Bailo on The Sun Still Rises
  • INTERLUDE PRESS TOUR And It Came to Pass by Laura Stone
  • Release Blitz for Isobel Starling ‘s As You Wish
  • A MelanieM  Review: Frozen Heart (Love Lessons #1.5) by Heidi Cullinan
  • A VVivacious Review: Reckless Seduction & Reckless Behavior by Amanda Young
  • An Alisa Review: Truth or Lie by Lynn Lorenz
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Audiobook Review:Summer Lessons (Winter Ball #2) by Amy Lane and Nick J. Russo (Narrator

Wednesday, May 24:

  • Release Blitz Tour Request – RJ Scott – Back Home
  • Release Blitz Equality (Dublin Virtues #2) by Helena Stone
  • Review Tour – Laurent and the Beast – KA Merikan
  • A MelanieM Review: Hawaiian Orchid (The Hawaiians 2) by Meg Amor
  • A Stella Release Day Review: Gone by the Board by August Li
  • An Ali Review: The Well by Marie Sexton
  • An Alisa Review:  Laurent and the Beast by KA Merikan

Thursday, May 25:

  • RIPTIDE TOUR & Giveaway: The Wrong Woman by Cass Lennox
  • Release Blitz Keira Andrews – Road To The Sun
  • DSP GUEST POST Andrea Speed on Lochlann
  • DSP GUEST POST Diana Copland
  • A Caryn Review: A Good Neighbor by Clare London
  • A Free Dreamer Review: Seidman by James Erich
  • A VVivacious Review: Performance Review by Tamryn Eradani
  • An Alisa Review: Cutting Cords by Morticia Knight

Friday, May 26:

  • DSP GUEST POST Mario Kai Lipinski
  • Review Tour – By The Numbers by RJ Scott
  • Review Tour The Devils Pride MC Series by Jessie G
  • A MelanieM Review: By the Numbers by RJ Scott
  • An Alisa Review: The Devils Pride MC series by Jessie G
    (Tricking Chase (The Devils Pride MC #1) Talk Dirty to Me (The Devils Pride MC #2)
    Tys that Bind (The Devils Pride MC #2.5)

Saturday, May 27:

  • Release Blitz Before You Break (Secrets #1)  by KC Wells
  • Release Blitz Josephine Myles – Junk (Bristol Collection #1)
  • A MelanieM Review: Wallaçonia by David Pratt

A MelanieM Review: Hawaiian Lei (The Hawaiians 1) by Meg Amor

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Rating: 4.25 stars out of 5

 

Beau Toyama, biplane pilot and flight instructor on the Big Island of Hawai’i has only been out for a year. His last relationship with a man was a disaster. When he meets Matt Quintal, who’s visiting his sister, he’s stunned by the instant attraction to him. But Beau’s afraid to ask for what he needs in a relationship; his anger frightens him. The “mixed plate” Hawaiian/Japanese/Tahitian man works on being Zen calm but Matt brings all his emotions to the surface. It uncovers a devastating secret from his childhood and deep shame that needs healing.

Matt Quintal, New Zealand painter has been living the wild gay life in LA. After one more night of soulless mechanical sex where his body is engaged but his emotions aren’t—he knows he needs a change. His sister wants him to come to Hawai’i for a visit; another big rock in the middle of the Pacific doesn’t seem like a solution but he has to do something. When he flies with Beau in his biplane, he feels a strong pull toward both man and plane that he can neither explain nor deny.

Matt’s a New Zealander, they’re encouraged to be tough, rugged and durable. He is, but he’s emotionally a wreck, afraid to show his emotions, so he’s surprised when Beau encourages him to be all of himself. Has he finally found the freedom to be the man he wants to be? The heat between the two men is like watching Pele let her hair down, releasing her hot, molten lava. Will the gorgeous Hawaiian with his long silky black hair and soulful brown eyes finally convince the gypsy nature in Matt to put down roots in another island culture?

First of all, let me say that if you can embrace or accept the possibility of the element of mysticism, that your ancestors in other  planes of existence are looking after you, that Astrology is real as is the ability to chart patterns in your life, then you will dive into this story with all your heart.  Hawaiian Lei with its characters Matt and Beau and their mixed heritages of Maori, Hawaiian, Tahitian, Japanese and more anchor this novel with their cultures, religions, their ancestral support and faith. Here you step firmly away from the Christian religious beliefs and into one of the Pacific cultures and it’s beautiful. And ugly and in the end full of redemption, hope, love and family.  It’s quite the journey.

Matt’s life is empty in California,  A dream and a call from his sister in Hawaii prompt his flight (literally) to her and something new. Rach, his sister, is adept at reading their charts and she knew he would be coming, his dream was the final push to send him on his way.  Once you land with Matt, give up and immerse yourself in their world where paths can be seen, owls and turtles are totems and their appearances are significant, and a quick meeting between two men does mean true love.  Its both magical and mundane and it totally works.  Its natural for everyone here to live in this way, so in tune with each other and nature that you will believe in it with your heart.

There are also some dark issues that Beau has to work through, he does with Matt’s help and that of a sacred healing ritual, Lomi Lomi, that plays out here.  The novel is full of terms from the various Pacific cultures represented here (it’s fascinating to see how tightly they are aligned).  There is also a small dictionary at the end that’s nice but the reader will pick up all the meanings in the story.

Hawaiian Lei is lush, vivid storytelling, rich in layers, nuanced characters (main and otherwise).  It speaks of family, recovery, and the ability to move forward after healing.   It has a heartwarming ending, full of elements that brings together  so many threads from throughout the story.  I just loved this.  And I highly recommend it.

Cover Artist:Syneca Featherstone. The cover art is beautiful and perfect.  I love it.

Buy Link: Amazon      | Loose ID          | Amazon UK

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 231 pages
Published March 17th 2015 by Loose Id LLC
Original TitleHawaiian Lei
ASINB00UUL7V1A
Edition LanguageEnglish
Series The Hawaiians #1

May Showers, Upended Plans and This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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By this time in May my gardens should be underway.  My hanging baskets planted and I should feel a sense of accomplishment.  Instead my backyard is a cold swamp from all the heavy rains we’ve had, awaiting plants that the unseasonably cold temps and garden centers say it’s still too early to plant even though they are hardy and perennial.  The front yard beds are a tangle of weeds awaiting the new rototiller and bed makeovers. Ah,  fickle nature!  Ah, upended plans and shattered schedules.

I tell you ….the temptation to sit here and let the  frustration build is great.  Equally so is grabbing that glass of wine and being philosophical about it all (including the amount of weeds left to demolish).  I’ll let you all guess as to which won out.

Meanwhile the meteorologists are again teasing us with a forecast of blue skies and high temperatures for this coming week.  Shakes head and wags a finger in their direction.  I’ve seen such forecasts in the past.  This time, no plans.  I’m going to take a wait and see approach, a very low bar I’m setting to be sure.

What do you all do when your plans go astray?  Or schedules go splat?  Do you reach for the Häagen-Dazs or maybe Ben and Jerry’s and a spoon?  Or perhaps your favorite comfort read and a hike?  What’s your go to coping mechanism?  Help a reviewer out here while I ponder my soppy gardens and my TBR lists….

Melanie’s Soppy Garden Contest

Tell me what you do to cope when things start to go awry!  Read, write, hike, paint!  If reading, what books?  A random winner will be chosen to receive a $10 gift cert from Dreamspinner Press.  Please let your email address where you can be reached if chosen.  Contest ends next weekend, 5/20, when I can report that I’ve made progress on my gardens after they’ve had a chance to dry out!

~

Meanwhile, we have many wonderful books we are reviewing this week including the following audiobooks.  Our newest reviewer, Alessandro, has his review of Behemoth and the Wisp by Linn Edwards and if you are a lover of RJ Scott’s Sanctuary series, it’s finally coming to a close with the last book in the series, By The Numbers, out this week.  My review is up as well!.  We have something for everyone!  Check out our schedule below and be with us all week for the giveaways, author interviews and our reviews!

 

 

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, May 14:

  • May Showers, Upended Plans and Melanie’s Soppy Garden Contest
  • This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Monday, May 15:

  • Release Blitz: Maelstrom by Kass Barrow
  • Retro Review Tour: Ellery Mountain 1,2 & 3 – RJ Scott
  • Review Tour :My Highland Cowboy by Alexa Milne
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: Two for Trust by Elle Brownlee
  • A Caryn Release Day Review: Past the Breakers by Lucie Archer
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Ellery Mountain series by RJ Scott (The Fireman and the Cop +The Teacher & The Soldier+The Carpenter & The Actor)

Tuesday, May 16:

  • David Pratt on Wallaçonia, his latest novel (Author Guest Blog)
  • DSP GUEST POST Andrew Grey on Setting the Hook
  • HARMONY INK GUEST POST Pearl Love on Salvation’s Song
  • A VVivacious Release Day Review: The Eye of Ra (Repeating History #1) by Dakota Chase
  • An Ali Audiobook Review: Snowblind by Eli Easton and Narrator: John Solo
  • An Ali Review: Faking It (Ringside Romance #2) by Christine d’Abo
  • An Alisa Review: Threshold by Vivien Dean

Wednesday, May 17:

  • Blog Tour I Do, or Dye Trying by Aimee Nicole Walker
  • DSP GUEST POST JC LONG on Hearts in Ireland
  • A Lila Release Day Review: A Taste of Honey by Ari McKay
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: The Sun Still Rises (World of Love) by Laura Bailo 
  • A VVivacious Review: A New Beginning (Cascade City Pack #1) by Rebecca James
  • An Alisa Audiobook Review: Until Forever Comes​ by Cardeno C and Charlie David (Narrator)

Thursday, May 18:

  • DSP Publications GUEST POST J Tullos Hennig on Summerwode (The Wode: Book Four)
  • RIPTIDE TOUR Forest of Thorns and Claws by JT Hall
  • Release Blitz & Review Tour – By The Numbers (Sanctuary #10) by R.J. Scott (series finale)
  • A MelanieM Review: By The Numbers (Sanctuary #10) by R.J. Scott (series finale)
  • A MelanieM Review: Law of Love by Bob Masters
  • An Ali Audiobook Review: Where There’s Fire (Panopolis #2) by Cari Z. and Nick J. Russo (Narrator)

 

Friday, May 19:

  • BLOG TOUR The Castaway Prince by Isabelle Adler
  • In the Spotlight: Summer Stock by Vanessa North (Riptide Publishing Tour and Giveaway)
  • DSP GUEST POST Tempeste O’Riley
  • A MelanieM Review: Hawaiian Lei (The Hawaiians 1) by Meg Amor
  • An Alessandro Review: Behemoth and the Wisp by Linn Edwards
  • An Ali Release Day Review: Michael, Reinvented (Delta Restorations #2) by Diana Copland
  • An Alisa Review: Believe in the Wish by Christi Snow

Saturday, May 20:

  • A MelanieM Pre Release Review: On Point (Out of Uniform #3) by Annabeth Albert
  • A MelanieM Review: Wallaçonia by David Pratt

An Alisa Review: Turn Up the Heat by Jane Davitt & Alexa Snow

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Rating:  4 stars out of 5

 

First impressions fool recently dumped Rory into thinking Shannon’s a walk on the wild side and the perfect way to get over a failed relationship. Shannon’s not about to argue. Not when Rory coaxes him into some of the hottest, roughest sex of his life. But who is Rory falling in love with? A fantasy lover or the real man?

 

Fighting to keep Rory happy, longing for romance as well as the steamy sessions that leave them bruised and breathless, Shannon’s got a lot on his plate even before family and friends complicate matters further.

 

There’s only one solution. Turn up the heat, and hope it doesn’t burn their relationship to the ground.

 

I really enjoyed this story.  Rory goes out on a limb to have a one night stand with Shannon and take a walk on the wild side.  Shannon tries to keep up with Rory’s requests but it just seems to go farther and farther out of his comfort zone.

 

Rory makes an immediate assumption of Shannon’s life and just keeps pushing for more.  I can see how awkward both of these characters are in their first interaction and most of those following but neither of them seems to be able to tell that anything is off about the other.

 

Rory just wants the chance to actually have sex since he hasn’t in a long time but he doubts that anyone will want to have a relationship with him and the drama that his brother brings.  Shannon works hard but doesn’t realize how much he wants a real relationship until Rory peaks his interest.  We can see how each character feels during their encounters through their eyes but they both hide so much inside from each other.  These two are the kings of not talking to each other, they would talk in questions and around in circles, which hurt their ability to really know what the other was thinking.  That said the story was great and the sex scenes were hot.

 

Cover art by Valerie Tibbs is great and gives nice visuals of the main characters.

 

Sales Links: Loose Id | Amazon | B&N

 

Book Details:

ebook, 232 pages

Published: April 10, 2017 by Loose Id

ISBN: 9781682523223

Edition Language: English