In Our Spotlight: Angels of Istanbul (Arising #2) by Alex Beecroft (tour and giveaway)

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Angels of Istanbul (Arising #2) by Alex Beecroft
R
iptide Publishing
Cover by: Simoné

Read an Excerpt/Buy It Here at Riptide Publishing

 

About Angels of Istanbul

Wallachian nobleman Radu is recently arrived in Bucharest with his vampire parents. Welcomed as an eligible bachelor, he’s introduced to the enchantress Ecaterina, whose salon is Bucharest’s centre of magical expertise. 

But when Ecaterina’s brother dies of a mysterious new plague, it’s clear to Radu that his parents have not been idle. Soon Bucharest is in the grip of an undead epidemic—a less than ideal time for Ottoman Sultan Mahmud, Wallachia’s overlord, to call Bucharest’s nobility to assemble their armies in Istanbul for a holy war against Britain.

The Wallachians have long resented their Ottoman overlords, so Radu seizes the chance to eliminate them while also ridding Bucharest of the undead: he leads an army of vampires to Istanbul and sets them to feed on the Turks.

As Radu’s demons gut the city of Istanbul, their plans become horribly clear. This is only the start. With the Ottoman armies under their control, the undead are poised to suck the life out of the whole world. Radu, his lover Frank, and Ecaterina are appalled at what they’ve unleashed. But they may be too late to stop it.

Now available from Riptide Publishing

This title is #2 of the Arising series.

About Alex Beecroft

Alex Beecroft is an English author best known for historical fiction, notably Age of Sail, featuring gay characters and romantic storylines. Her novels and shorter works include paranormal, fantasy, and contemporary fiction.

Beecroft won Linden Bay Romance’s (now Samhain Publishing) Starlight Writing Competition in 2007 with her first novel, Captain’s Surrender, making it her first published book. On the subject of writing gay romance, Beecroft has appeared in the Charleston City PaperLA Weekly, the New Haven Advocate, the Baltimore City Paper, and The Other Paper. She is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association of the UK and an occasional reviewer for the blog Speak Its Name, which highlights historical gay fiction.

Alex was born in Northern Ireland during the Troubles and grew up in the wild countryside of the English Peak District. She lives with her husband and two children in a little village near Cambridge and tries to avoid being mistaken for a tourist.

Alex is only intermittently present in the real world. She has led a Saxon shield wall into battle, toiled as a Georgian kitchen maid, and recently taken up an 800-year-old form of English folk dance, but she still hasn’t learned to operate a mobile phone.

She is represented by Louise Fury of the L. Perkins Literary Agency.

Connect with Alex:

Giveaway

To celebrate the release of Angels of Istanbul, one lucky winner will receive $10 Riptide credit and their choice of ebook from Alex’s backlist! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on April 1, 2017. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!

BLOG TOUR: One Bullet by Casey Wolfe (excerpt and giveaway)

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Title:  One Bullet

Author: Casey Wolfe

Publisher:  NineStar Press

Release Date: March 27

Heat Level: 1 – No Sex

Pairing: Male/Male

Length: 50400

Genre: Romance, LGBT, gay, bisexual, law enforcement, PTSD, parkour, free running, therapy, healing, no explicit sex, slow burn-UST, friends to lovers.

Add to Goodreads

Synopsis

When Ethan Brant was shot, he found himself dealing with severe PTSD and unable to do his job as a police officer any longer. With the aid of Detective Shawn Greyson, the man who saved his life, Ethan not only finds himself again but discovers love as well.

Shawn’s life growing up was less than ideal, however, he overcame that to become who he is today. That doesn’t mean he isn’t missing something in his life. What Shawn hadn’t realized, upon first meeting, was that Ethan could give him all that and more.

One bullet changed both their lives.

Excerpt

One Bullet
Casey Wolfe © 2017
All Rights Reserved

Blood. So much blood. The echo of a gun. The smell of gunpowder. The sharp bite of a bullet. Viscous liquid slipping through his fingers.

Darkness. A voice coming through it. Words he should have recognized. Concerned, though not panicked. Surprisingly warm. Warm like the arms he was pulled into.

Flashing lights. Red. Red seen behind closed eyes. Like the blood on his hands, on the ground.

Cold. Like death.

Shooting up in bed, Ethan’s anguished cry died on his lips. He shook, breath ragged as he wiped away the cold sweat from his brow. More sweat covered his body, making goosebumps break out. His mouth was dry, throat sore from screaming. No doubt the neighbors would be complaining to building management again.

He wasn’t sure how long it took before his brain provided the vital information that he’d been dreaming. Ethan drew in a deep, shaky breath, letting it out slowly. He sat up fully, repeating the process and attempting to calm himself. It was a dream. Just a dream, he reminded himself. You’re safe. You’re alive. Just a dream.

When he felt that he wasn’t about to go into a full-blown panic attack at any moment, Ethan looked at his bedside clock. The glowing blue numbers informed him there wasn’t much point in attempting sleep again. Instead, he switched off the alarm and hauled himself out of bed, trudging toward the bathroom and a cold shower.

He pressed a hand to the tiles, leaning into the spray, head down. As water sloshed off his body, Ethan blew out a breath. He rubbed his free hand over his face before shaking his head as though he could shake out the memories. Sighing, he ran his fingers through his brunet hair. It was looking shabby and in need of a trim, but he couldn’t find it in himself to care.

He was losing some muscle as well. Much of that was due to his recovery after being in the hospital. He hadn’t been able to run with his parkour buddies until recently or do anything remotely resembling a sit-up. Still, becoming a twenty-six-year-old recluse wasn’t doing him any good either.

Ethan wasn’t vain, but he did like to stay in shape. His core was still there, even being as out of sorts as he was. Fingers ran across the small scar to the left of his navel, a reminder of the event months before that continued to shadow his every move.

Shutting the shower off, he grabbed a towel and dried his hair the best he could before wrapping the fabric around his waist. Water dripped onto the floor, but he paid it no mind, stopping at the sink to brush his teeth. He caught his reflection in the mirror, his dark-green eyes looking back, haunted.

It was going to be a long day.

* * *

The walk to work wasn’t far—roughly half a mile—so Ethan never found a point in taking public transport. Besides, the fresh air did him good. Well, as fresh as the air could be in the city. In any case, it was good for him to stretch his legs and clear his head. Unless the weather was poor, he gladly took the extra time to walk, and today was a clear and balmy summer day typical of Washington State.

Perhaps given how his day had started, he should have caught the bus. This was evident the second he looked up and saw a beat cop walking down the sidewalk toward him. Ethan froze momentarily. He tugged at the single strap across his chest, shifting the bag on his back. His eyes darted about, checking traffic and slipping across the street before the cop reached him.

The move must have looked suspicious as Ethan found himself approached by a police cruiser. It paced alongside him, and the officer in the passenger seat called out to him. “Hey, buddy.”

Ethan bit back the I’m not your buddy that was on the tip of his tongue and, instead, ignored him until the officer raised his voice. “Yeah?” he inquired, not stopping.

“Mind if we chat a minute?”

“Yeah, I do,” Ethan answered, turning sideways to slide past some people. “I need to get to work.”

“It’ll just take a minute,” the officer insisted in a tone meant to make him obey.

It was too bad that it didn’t work on someone like Ethan. Having been a cop himself, he knew the tricks. He also knew the law. There was no probable cause for them to detain him, so he needn’t stop at all. “Sorry. Can’t help you.”

The cruiser stopped, the officer getting out and moving into his path. “Sir.” Ethan backpedaled a few steps. He held up an arm, making a barrier between himself and the cop. He noted the man’s partner getting out of the driver’s side, walking to the back of the cruiser, and hovering there.

“Officer,” Ethan spoke as clearly as he could, “my name is Ethan Brant. There are standing orders within the department that any contact with me should be reported into dispatch immediately.” He was attempting to stay calm, but it was difficult as his muscles started to twitch.

The cop stepped forward. “Wait, wait, no…” Ethan began to panic, backing away. He was trying to get out the prepared speech as he was told to say it. Neither of the officers seemed as though they wanted to listen. “You’re not supposed to touch me. You’re supposed to keep your distance and call it in. Please.”

The moment a hand was laid on him, Ethan snapped. He shoved the cop away, taking off at a dead run.

A car slammed its brakes just in time to avoid hitting him, blocking his path. Instinct took over and Ethan slid right across the hood. He could hear the call for backup, but all he wanted was to vanish.

Free running with his friends may have been something he hadn’t done much since his accident, thanks to his long recovery, but muscle memory kicked in, and he let his mind go.

He ran between shops, a dumpster on the lowered backlot catching his eye. He cleared the safety railing without slowing, running across the top of the dumpster. With momentum, Ethan leapt off the other side, flipping before landing lightly on his feet.

He came out of the connecting alley into a shopping plaza, wide open for him to work with. Ethan made to turn left, spotting the cruiser that screamed up onto the sidewalk. In midrun he extended his foot out, springing off a bench and pushing his body in the opposite direction. Using the retaining wall of the decorative plant beds to avoid the crowd, he managed to get distance between them.

Ahead there was a set of stairs going down toward the park, and rather than avoid them, he used the terrain to his advantage. Diving forward, he cleared the stone rail, his palms touching the rail on the opposite side. He tucked his legs, missing both rails as he swung them forward, feet landing lightly on the ground. Despite protesting muscles, he repeated the same move for the next stairway.

As he kept running, he realized where he was. It didn’t matter that another set of cops had come in from the opposite end of the shopping plaza because Ethan wasn’t planning to use the traditional entrance. A brick wall with a switchback of stairs was at his right, and that was his means of escape.

Forgetting the stairs—which would only slow him down—he brought his left foot up to a railing, using it to launch him at the wall. He gripped the ledge above him, bringing his knees up to push with the balls of his feet. Muscling up made him grunt at the pain coursing through his abdomen, a move he shouldn’t have been doing just yet.

Somewhere in the back of his head, he was aware of the cops yelling in disbelief, getting their colleagues on the radio to update them on Ethan’s direction of travel. Ethan didn’t plan on the police being able to find him fast enough before he completely disappeared.

He ran across the street, jumping up and over the wooden bench in his path. Well aware of the laptop in his backpack, rather than simply tucking and rolling, he shifted his weight midair so he would land on his hip and leg, rolling through to his feet.

The entrance to the subway was right there, and he slid down the metal railing in the center of the stairwell.

Ethan’s breathing was ragged. It had been too long since he had a run like that; his muscles burned. He leaned a forearm on a pillar, waiting for the next train to pass through the subway. He just needed to sit, to center himself. A crowded morning train car wasn’t the best place, but he didn’t have much of a choice.

Even the strap of his backpack felt constraining across his chest. He yanked the strap over his head and set the bag onto the ground at his feet. Ethan took a deep lungful of air.

Just as he thought he was safe, someone grabbed his arm. Ethan simply reacted, using his strength to swing the man around to collide with the pillar. It was then Ethan saw his attacker was a cop, but he missed the officer’s partner.

Volts of electricity cascaded through his body, causing Ethan’s legs to buckle, and he went down on the tiled platform. He was helpless to stop the officer who put a knee in his back, grabbing his arms. Panic seeped into every pore. The click of the handcuffs as the cold metal wrapped around his wrist made him struggle. It was in vain; a second shocking jolt was sent through him.

“Get off him!” a man ordered. “Now!” It took Ethan a moment to recognize the smooth cadence and authoritative tone. He craned his neck, tears stinging his eyes, to gaze on Detective Shawn Greyson. When the officers protested, Shawn held up his badge and glowered. “Stand down,” he growled, physically removing them.

“We just chased this kid all over the damn city!” one argued. “Just ’cause yer a detective—”

“I said back off!” Shawn yelled, eyes like fire and his entire presence radiating danger. It was more than enough to have both of them doing as they were told.

Shawn immediately crouched next to Ethan and unhooked the cuffs. Shawn helped him to sit, running his hands up and down Ethan’s arms. “Hey, you’re alright. You’re safe,” Shawn assured him, voice low and easy. Ethan met deep blue-gray eyes, heart-wrenching at the sight of the friendly face. “Just focus on your breathing, okay? I’ve got you.”

Ethan nodded, thankful for the watchful gaze that allowed him to concentrate on centering himself. He listened to Shawn’s steady voice, not even focusing on the words so much as the calming tone. Shawn’s touch was reassuring, hands continuing their path up and down Ethan’s arms before grasping his shoulders.

“That’s it,” Shawn spoke. “There you go.” Ethan took a deep breath, looking at him once more. Shawn smiled encouragingly. “Better?” Ethan gave a slight nod, not trusting his voice just yet. “Okay. Take your time.”

Purchase

NineStar Press | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Smashwords

Meet the Author

Author of gay romantic fiction, from contemporary to paranormal and everything in between.

For Casey, existence equals writing. History nerd, film enthusiast, music lover, avid gamer, and just an all-around geek. Add in an unapologetic addiction to loose-leaf tea and you get the general picture. Married, with furry four-legged children, Casey lives happily in the middle of nowhere Ohio.

Website | Facebook | eMail | Tumblr

Tour Schedule

3/27    Molly Lolly; Reader, Reviewer, Lover of Words

3/27    MM Good Book Reviews

3/28    Dog-Eared Daydreams  

3/28    BFD Book Blog

3/29    Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews

3/29    Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

3/30    Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents

3/30    Happily Ever Chapter

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A MelanieM Review: Patience (Dublin Virtues #1) by Helena Stone

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Patience is a virtue. But what if you wait too long?

While Xander Ekman’s dream of becoming a successful artist has come true, his love life has gone from bad to worse. Sick of the endless string of one-night-stands, he accepts the challenge when his best friend, Erik, bets him that he can’t be celibate for a month. Now all he needs is a reminder to keep his distance in the heat of the moment.

Troy Moriarty doesn’t have time for love. He’s too busy trying to keep his recently opened tattoo parlour afloat. Besides, ever since the man who was supposed to be his business partner abandoned him to run the shop on his own, he has a hard time trusting others.

When Xander turns to Troy for a tattoo that will remind him to be patient, the attraction is instant. But faced with Xander’s month of celibacy, Troy’s trust issues, and a nemesis lurking in the background, their relationship may be doomed before it has a chance to begin.

Patience (Dublin Virtues #1) by Helena Stone represents a new story, new series and a new author for me.  After finishing Patience, I considered it a win in all three categories.  Set in the city of Dublin, a place I dearly love (and captured here pretty well, especially the climate), we meet Xander an artist whose habit of one night stands has left him feeling empty and used.  Enter his old friend and a bet.  One month of abstinence.

I thought the author did a terrific job of making me feel empathetic towards  Xander immediately.  Under Erik’s  questioning, Xander starts to crumble, admitting to the feelings and walls he’s built up to hide the emptiness inside.  Seeing Xander’s pain and understanding the man brings us so close to him at the very beginning.  We’re there, liking him and rooting for his HEA.

When Troy is introduced, its so beautifully done, like the author quietly dropping a puzzle piece in place.  There’s linking threads between them, of course, from major to slim, which are revealed to us and them over the course of the story.  Troy is as immensely likable and real as is Xander, and equally broken in the same parts of his heart.  Biggest issue?  Trust of course, and communication about the important things.  How true to life and how sadly realistic.

The author must have a real love of symmetry for she has given each man a best friend here that acts as their support, confidant, and all around ‘kick in the pants’ when needed.  I fell in love with both of them as well, each as different as can be and, fingers crossed I’m hoping that the next book or books in the series revolves around them.

I had a couple of small issues one.  One was that Xander kept making a big deal over his anger issues but quite frankly we never saw any that seemed out of control or over the top.  Everyone gets angry and he was able to pull back and deal each time.  So either it should have been brought more fully into the story or really not made an issue of at all.

Also I felt the ending was a little rushed.  One bit left us hanging, although I suppose that was for the books to come.  Still it made me wonder because everything else in this terrific story is so well supported and all the foundations so lovingly laid out.  But that’s it.  I loved this story.

I will of course be anxiously awaiting the next story in the series.  I can’t wait to see where the author takes us and who the story will be about.

My one last little nod to Dublin and Ireland.  Surely another symbol other than a kanji character could have been used.  Maybe a celtic rune perhaps?  Just a thought.

Cover art by Emmy Ellis is ok but nothing that shouts storyline to me.

Sales Links

Pride Publishing 


Pre-Order: Amazon US | Amazon UK  (March 28)

 

Book Details:

ebook, 1st edition, 170 pages
Published February 28th 2017 by Pride Publishing
ISBN139781786515360
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesDublin Virtues #1

A VVivacious Review: An Officer’s Submission (Cuffs, Collars, and Love #3) by Christa Tomlinson

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Rating: 5 stars out of 5
 
Logan and Clay have finally found their places in their relationship.
 
But while things at home are better than good their life at work undergoes an upheaval. This serves to bring old doubts to the forefront of Clay’s mind but when an incident at work destroys his bubble of happiness, he is lost. As he works out how to deal with things while simultaneously keeping Logan in the dark things start going bad fast. Can their relationship survive these troubled waters and at what cost?
 
This book is amazing. It is a fabulous addition to a series that was already brilliant. I love this series so much and this book is my favourite one in this series.
 
Though I have to confess that, when I started reading this book I wasn’t feeling so good about it. This is because of three reasons. Firstly because I really thought that Logan and Clay would be much further along in their relationship. Secondly the beginning of this book is just a lot of sex scenes which don’t do much for story progression or so I thought. Thirdly this book features the alternating POVs of Logan and Clay and early on in the book the POVs where changing quite frequently often in the middle of a scene which was quite disconcerting. For all the above reasons I stopped reading this book around the 20% mark.
 
But luckily for me, from that point on the book is a treasure and when I started reading the book from this point on I couldn’t stop, I read the rest of it in a single setting without any breaks. Oh My God! This book is amazing, it was just so good and believe me my entire opinion on this book took a one eighty twist. Urgh! This book is just so good.
 
I think the initial series of sex scenes is basically a parameter to measure how off base Logan and Clay’s relationship had gotten following the events of this book. Also this book shows Logan and Clay’s relationship visibly move forward, which I loved because I wanted these two characters together since they are amazing together.
 
There are so many scenes in this book which were just amazing, just because there was such a wealth of emotion suffused in some of the dialogue that I had to read those parts of the book again just to get my fill. The Shibari scene early on in the book is where things changed for me in this book. But personally my all-time favourite part of this book was the scene featuring Logan and Clay during therapy, that scene was epic on so many levels. It saw their relationship mature and that scene is just crucial in getting all the events in this book into perspective. The punishment scene is hot, I mean there are no other words for it except maybe ingenious and innovative and Logan is a genius for figuring out the perfect way to mete out punishment, amazing. Also I love the scene in the bathroom following the altercation. This book has so many good things happening for it. This book just gave me so many feels that it took me over a day to get myself into a place where I could finally try to turn those feelings into words.
 
Personally I already loved the characters and their relationship from “The Sergeant” but this time around I got to love these characters even more. The plot is so amazingly written and it is so engrossing, it was a whole new twist on everything. What I loved about the plot was that it was something so troubling but it was presented and dealt with really well given the circumstances and moreover what I loved was how well the plot was used to make us see these characters in a new light.
 
In short, loved the book, loved the plot and adored Logan & Clay. It was simply amazing and it was a fantabulous addition to an already pretty great series.
 
Cover Art by Melody Simmons of eBook Indie Covers. The cover is amazing.
Sales Links
Book Details:
Kindle Edition
Published March 15th 2017 by Torlina Publishing
ASINB06XNTLCXZ
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesCuffs, Collars, and Love #3

Release Day Blitz: Enemy Within by Tal Bauer (excerpt and giveaway)

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Title:  Enemy Within

Series: The Executive Office, Book 3

Author: Tal Bauer

Publisher:  Self-Published

Release Date: 3/28/2017

Heat Level: 4 – Lots of Sex

Pairing: Male/Male

Length: 176K

Genre: Romance, Thriller/Suspense

Add to Goodreads

Synopsis

The White House, infiltrated.
The president, running for his life.
A traitorous general, intent on burning the world to the ground.

When everything falls apart, who do you trust?

President Jack Spiers fled Washington DC on the heels of a devastating attack on CIA headquarters, masterminded by one of America’s own, former General Porter Madigan. While the world believes Jack was killed in the bombing, he embarks on a wild infiltration mission, smuggling himself into occupied Russia to rescue the love of his life: former Secret Service Agent and First Gentleman Ethan Reichenbach.

Reunited, Jack, Ethan, and deposed Russian president Sergey Puchkov, along with President Elizabeth Wall—the only person left in Washington DC who Jack trusts—must work together. They piece together a desperate plan, hunting Madigan to the ends of the earth and the bitter frigidity of the Arctic, where Madigan’s world-shattering doomsday plan comes together.

Outnumbered, outmaneuvered, and outgunned, Jack, Ethan, Sergey, and the rest of the team struggle to put a stop to Madigan and his army. In the desolate extremes of the Arctic, their resolve, their strength, and even their love is tested, pushed to the absolute limits as choices must be made: choices that pit the fate of the world against the love in their hearts, and the loves of their life.

As the world crumbles around them, Jack and Ethan find themselves waging a war on two fronts—against an enemy they can see, and another, hiding within their ranks.

Who can be trusted when the enemy is within you?

Excerpt

The sounds of the convoy coming alive in the frosty morning started clattering through their patch of snowy forest. Grumbled Russian, slamming doors and squeaky metal hinges, the crackle of logs in a fire, and the clang of pots and pans that Vasily insisted on bringing from Volga.

Jack nuzzled at Ethan’s neck, and the roughness of his beard, grown thick in the five days they’d been on the road, scratched over Ethan’s skin just before Jack dropped a kiss beneath his jaw. “Morning, love.”

Ethan smiled down at him, de-cocked his pistol, and slid it into his hip holster beneath their blankets. He wrapped both arms around Jack as Jack turned and faced him. “How are you? Are you warm enough?” As Ethan spoke, his breath clouded the air between them.

“I’m good.” Jack peeled off his gloves beneath the blankets and snaked his warm hands up under Ethan’s jacket and sweater. His gentle, searching fingers found the long line of ragged stitches in Ethan’s side.

Ethan flinched.

“Sorry. You know we need to check them.” Carefully, Jack felt around the stitches, testing the skin, and then rested his palm over the top of the mostly-healed wound. “No heat. No swelling. No pus. No infection.” He smiled. “You had me worried after yesterday.”

Ethan ducked his head, his cheeks warming. While rummaging through an abandoned barn, he’d walked right through a rotted-out baseboard and fallen into a cellar, into the rough, loose earth. Not his finest moment. They’d wrangled some supplies, but he’d come away filthy and bruised, his ego smarting. Jack’s worried eyes and his gentle ministrations after they’d stopped for the night had helped sooth the ache.

Jack’s gaze darted over Ethan’s face, searching. He frowned. “Did you get any sleep?”

“Some.”

“Liar.” Arching an eyebrow, Jack sat back but kept his hands under Ethan’s clothes and on his skin. “You should let me watch over you at night, too.”

“I’d rather do it. I have you close to me.” He patted his hip and his holstered weapon. “I have constant protection on you all night long. There’s no way anyone can get to you. Not without going through me.”

“Literally.” Jack smiled, but it faded fast. “I’ll drive during the day again. Rest, and let me watch over you.” He squeezed Ethan’s hip as if to emphasize his point.

Ethan nodded, and the corners of his lips quirked up. This was new, this give and take of caretaking and watching out for each other. In DC, at the White House, there had been their jobs and their duties and the world to react to. They took care of slights and wounds inflicted by the press, their suits and ties a kind of armor against the world. Out in the wilderness, in the forest, they’d fallen into a different kind of caretaking. A sharing of two lives, each supporting the other’s existence. It was primal, in a way, how they had fused together. Half of his life was in Jack’s hands, and instead of feeling vulnerable, it was the most natural feeling in the world. “Deal.” Leaning forward, he pressed a kiss to Jack’s lips.

A question hovered in the forefront of Ethan’s mind, weighing on his thoughts. Every morning, he felt the weight of his secret resting over his heart: two rings, made before the world fell apart around them. Some moments, asking Jack was on the tip of his tongue, ready to tumble from his lips with his next breath. He forced himself to swallow the words. Not yet. It wasn’t the right time. Not yet.

Jack leaned into Ethan, and his hands wound around Ethan’s back beneath his sweater. “At some point, we won’t be sleeping in this jeep anymore,” he whispered into their kiss. “We’ll have room to stretch out… share a sleeping bag…”

Smiling, Ethan pulled off his gloves and brought his hands up to Jack’s face, his thumbs caressing Jack’s cheeks. “We don’t need a sleeping bag…” One hand snaked around Jack’s neck, and the other dropped to his hip.

In a flash, he flipped Jack, laying him on his back across the bench seat. Jack wrapped his legs around Ethan’s waist as Ethan slid his hands through Jack’s blond strands.

Jack grabbed his shoulders and pulled Ethan closer, his legs tightening and holding Ethan in place. He captured Ethan’s lips, kissing greedily as his hips rocked upward. Even through the layers they wore, Ethan felt Jack’s hard cock, pressing against his own.

“I want you,” Jack breathed.  “I want you to make love to me.”

Ethan’s blood burned, searing through his body from his head to his toes, and part of him wanted to tilt Jack’s head back and ravage his throat, work his way down, unwrap him like a present until he found his cock. Suck him deep. Work him open with his tongue until Jack begged for more, and then sink his cock into Jack’s warm, tight body. Jesus, he wanted Jack. So much.

The springs on the jeep’s suspension squeaked with their rocking, and the tires groaned and crunched against the snow on the ground. In the distance, low chuckles sounded, and one catcall.

Deflating, Ethan dropped his forehead to Jack’s chest. He rode Jack’s deep, heaving breaths and listened to his racing heartbeat. “I don’t want an audience when I make love to you again.”

Jack’s legs dropped, one falling over the back of the front seat, and the other squishing against the window. His hands stroked over Ethan’s back and tangled in his hair. “I don’t want to have to be quiet.”

“Jesus.” Ethan gripped Jack and surged against him, thrusting against his hard cock once more. “That’s not helping.”

Smiling, Jack rocked his hips up once and then scooted backward, propping himself up on his elbows as Ethan sat back and tried to straighten out his clothes. A prominent bulge strained the front of his cargo pants. He ached, nearly painfully hard for Jack.

From the center of the camp, Scott called, “Coffee’s ready if you are!”

Rumbling laughter, deep and throaty, from nearly all the men.

Shaking his head, Jack started to pull himself together next to Ethan and fished out his balaclava from the pocket of his cargo pants. Outside of the jeep, he wore a full-face balaclava and, on their drive, he kept everything but his eyes covered. Ethan insisted, and Scott and Sergey both backed him up. The members of their convoy, of course, knew who Jack was, and just after Jack had shown up, Sergey had delivered a scathing speech in Russian to his people that had had even Ethan flinching, though he didn’t understand a word that had been said. But, they were traveling through a war zone, parts of Russia that were contested in the coup, under attack from Moroshkin’s forces, and that had been bombed by the United States and other nations, all trying to stop Moroshkin.

Who knew what was out there, or who was out there. Jack was, to the world, brain dead in Bethesda Naval Hospital. A front-page picture of him alive and well in Russia would go over as well as a nuclear bomb.

“Scott came by?” Jack tucked his undershirt into his pants, taking a moment to readjust. His cheeks were dusted crimson, a faint flush that Ethan wanted to nibble.

“Yeah.” He tore his eyes away from Jack and fanned the bottom of his sweater, trying to cool his body.

“How’d the scouting go?”

“The route is clear for the morning. More abandoned villages. They found fuel and some supplies. Vasily is cooking eggs.” Ethan reached out, and his fingers traced Jack’s spine through his sweater and jacket. “And you should talk to Sergey.”

Turning, Jack stared at Ethan.

“I think Scott’s worried about him.” A tight, strained smile, curved his lips. “And that’s saying something.” Scott’s trust in Sergey, and in their Russian allies, extended from meal to meal. Day to day, hour by hour. If everything came apart, Scott would be the first to say “I knew it”.

“He hasn’t wanted to talk to me.” Swallowing, Jack leaned back with a sigh. His hands dropped to his lap, and he picked at the wool fibers of the balaclava. “He’s kept his distance since Volga. I’m not sure I’m the person he wants to see right now.”

Nodding slowly, Ethan frowned. Sergey’s harsh accusations, thrown at Jack at Volga air base, had been the last direct contact the two had. “After all this time, you think he’s pulling away because of…”

Because of their love? Because he and Jack were together? Because Sergey had been loved by a gay man? Was this some kind of reaction, a fear that falling in love with another man “was contagious”, as he’d hurled at Jack?

“He’s pulled back before.” Jack sat forward, slipped the balaclava over his head. He tugged it down around his neck. “I want to do the right thing by him. I don’t want to piss him off.” He frowned, deep lines furrowing his brow. “But, no matter what else is going on, he’s devastated about losing Sasha. I remember what it felt like when I thought you were dead. I can at least try to talk to him about that.”

Ethan’s chest constricted, and his heart almost seized. Was it only a week ago that he’d thought Jack was dead and gone as well? Never, ever, again. He’d do everything in his power to keep Jack safe, keep him from ever coming to harm. And, he’d never lose faith like that again, either. The darkness that had swallowed him on his race from Saudi Arabia to Russia. The emptiness, the silent scream within his soul. The way he had wanted to die, had begged the world to kill him.

Together. They’d face everything together from now on. No matter what.

Adjusting the balaclava, Jack leaned over and pressed a chaste kiss to Ethan’s lips. “Time to face the music, love.”

Ethan pulled out his own balaclava, tugged it down around his neck, and gripped the door handle. They piled out of the back of the jeep, and Ethan caught the smothered grins and barks of laughter sent their way. Scott raised a dented metal mug toward them both. Jack headed for him, and for the small fire on which Vasily was cooking.

One of the Russians who went out with Scott every morning, Aleksey, slid up to Ethan. Middle-aged, Aleksey had been a federal police officer in Sochi and had fought back with Sergey against Moroshkin and Madigan’s forces the night of the coup. Now, he was one of Sergey’s officers in the insurgency. He had a small beer gut and a thick salt and pepper mustache beneath ruddy, pockmarked cheeks, a quick, sharp smile, and perpetually messy hair.

His eyes glittered as he clapped Ethan on the back. “You are good Russian lover!” he crowed. “Quick!”

Others laughed, and Ethan spied Jack smothering his grin and rolling his eyes as he took the coffee Scott offered. Scott shrugged and hid his smile in his next sip.

Ethan clapped Aleksey on the upper arm, smiling along with the others. When he and Jack had first met the men in Sergey’s insurgency, they’d worried about how they would be received. Two men in love in a country where only months before, Sasha had almost been killed for being gay. Another man, Evgeni Konnikov, had been murdered.

Sergey’s men, however, had been nothing but accepting. They were believers in Sergey’s government, after all, and Sergey had made equality a foundational platform of his politics and administration.

They just showed that acceptance through good Russian ribbing and teasing. The more ribald the better.

“If we had actually got going,” Ethan began, winking first at Jack and then sending Aleksey a grin, “we’d be here for days.”

More laughter. Aleksey wagged his finger in Ethan’s face and squeezed his elbow before handing him a cup of bitter, sludgy coffee. Vasily waved him and Jack over, and he scooped the last of the eggs into a scavenged plastic bowl they shared. “I save for you,” Vasily said, pointing to them both.

Jack thanked him. As they ate, Ethan spotted Sergey standing in front of his jeep, his hands resting flat on a spread-out map of Russia draped over the hood with his head bowed low. He looked up, and his piercing gaze fell on Jack. There was a moment where his face flickered, something dark passing through his eyes, but it was gone before Ethan could catch it.

And then, Sergey folded up his map and climbed into the driver’s side of his jeep. He kept his eyes downcast, not once looking at Jack again.

Purchase

Amazon

Meet the Author

Tal Bauer is an award-winning and best-selling author of LGBT romantic thrillers, bringing together a career in law enforcement and international humanitarian aid to create dynamic characters, intriguing plots, and exotic locations. Tal is a member of the Romance Writers of America and the Mystery Writers of America.

Pronouns: They/them & he/him

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | eMail

 

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Release Blitz for Bronze Star (A Veterans Affairs Story) by AE Wasp

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Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Veterans Affairs Series
 
Half-Broke: A Veterans Affairs Short Amazon US | Amazon UK 
Incoming: A Veterans Affairs Novel Amazon US | Amazon UK
A Christmas Outing: A Veterans Affairs Story Amazon US | Amazon UK
Paper Hearts: A Veterans Affairs Novel Amazon US | Amazon UK
Paper Roses: A Veterans Affairs Story Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Blurb

Chris Dobbs is used to getting what he wants, and what he wants now is his boss.
Everything about the dangerously handsome enigmatic older man drives him to his knees in more ways than one, ways Chris is realizing he’s always craved.

Giving Jay-Cee his body is as simple as breathing, but when Chris smashes through all of Jay-Cee’s hard earned control, he learns Jay-Cee demands more than just his obedience. He wants things Chris can’t give him – his heart, his soul, and his trust.

Jay-Cee offered his brilliant young protégé everything. In return, Chris took only the pieces he wanted and rejected the rest, leaving Jay-Cee reeling.

But the deep connection between them isn’t easily severed, and it promises to heal them both of the scars of their pasts. If they are to build a sanctuary from the rubble of their broken hearts, they’re going to have to risk everything.

 

 

April 1 – Love Bytes
April 3 – Sarandipity
 
Author Bio

After time spent raising children, earning several college degrees, and traveling the world with the U.S. State Department, she is returning to her first love – writing.

A dreamer and an idealist, Amy writes about people finding connection in a world that can seem lonely and magic in a world than can seem all too mundane. She invites readers into her characters’ lives and worlds when they are their most vulnerable, their most human, living with the same hopes and fears we all have. An avid traveler who has lived in big cities and small towns in four different continents, Amy has found that time and distance are no barriers to love. She invites her readers to reach out and share how her characters have touched their lives or how the found families they have gathered around them have shaped their worlds.

Born on Long Island, NY, Amy has lived in Los Angeles, London, and Bangkok. She currently lives in a town suspiciously like Red Deer, Colorado.

VISIT MY BLOG

LIKE MY FACEBOOK PAGE
FOLLOW ME ON TWITTER
SEE INTO MY BRAIN AT PINTEREST
AND GET
HALF-BROKE: A VETERANS AFFAIRS STORY FOR FREE
 

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Ken Bachtold on Writing, Stories and his latest ‘A Company of Players’ (guest blog)

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A Company of Players (States of Love) by Ken Bachtold
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reamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Reese Dante

Available for Purchase at

✒︎

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to have Ken Bachtold here today answering our questions and talking about his release A Company of Players, the latest in Dreamspinner Press’ States of Love series.  Welcome, Ken, tell us about yourself, writing and your story!

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Ken Bachtold: First of all, being a great fan of the whimsical, I love the title of your blog! Makes me smile! Also, I think your question and answer approach is the very best way to understand an author, and I’m delighted to answer all your questions.

I do put a lot of my own thoughts and actions into my characters, particularly the protagonist, also the other characters often say things I think are important.  A few of my own experiences do come into play, i.e., more in this story than any of the others, since I did come to New York (not with a Barb) and I did start my own theater company called, surprisingly, A Company Of Players, the origin of which is explained in the book. The trip to the used theater seating company is right out of my experience. (I can still see those beautiful light blue seats that were too impractical to be used). However, most of the rest is made up. The local color (New York) is almost all authentic (i.e. the little square, so important in the story, actually exists), as I do live in New York (and I did come from San Francisco, where my knowledge, with research, remembers affectionately, The Fairmont Hotel.) I have a BA & MA in Theater with a minor in Art from San Francisco State University, so all of the theater references are spot on.

Yes! Research is vitally important, because someone, somewhere will have exact knowledge concerning what you’re writing about.  Heaven help the author who disregards this reader!  One of my stories had the main character going out of state.  I ordered a great book titled Writers Guide to Places by Dan Prues and Jack Heffron, and settled on Montana.  I found that, besides being the home of the Old Faithful geyser in Yellowstone National Park, it’s rumored that they have a potluck dinner every 2.3 seconds and they favor pickled eggs and bull’s testicles! After reading all that, and putting most of it into the story, I would never try to describe a different locale without research!

When younger, I read (and often re-read) the Dobbie Gillis stories by Max Schulman (who else would name a female character something so delicious as Poppy Herring!)? I’ve since always been attracted to that kind of humor (Paper Moon, Auntie Mame, etc. For instance, I loved the movie Deadpool.) My main characters in this story, Nick and Barb are constantly (with good humor) teasing each other and trying for one-upmanship. I feel it keeps the dialogue bright and interesting. Although, I do have moments of very serious conversations. Also, when I found her, I read all the Regency romances by Georgette Heyer (the very best in the genre) for their authentic period descriptions as well as the wonderful stories, and, when desperate, I must confess I even read Barbara Cartland (one of her heroines was named Panthia – which I thought rather pretentious.) My favorite main stream authors are Lee Child’s Streacher stories, and anything by Jonathan Kellerman and Dick Francis. As for MM stories, my most favorite novelist is Pat Henshaw, a fellow Dreamspinner author.

I’ve never had to put an “in progress” story aside because of emotional angst, because I never let my characters get to that absolute desperation point.  Worry, insecurity etc., but never any truly painful stress. Their hearts may ache, or even shatter a bit, but they never bleed to death!  I’ve always hated sad endings and with movies I won’t even go to one, because the depression stays with me for days.  So, too, with books.  I’ve literally thrown an MM book on the floor when at the very end, the characters look sadly at each other as the sun sets over the beach, and then they walk in different directions. Grrrr!

I have had to put a story aside when I get two ideas going at the same time.  I write just enough to get my ideas down and then put one away.  I’m very linear, not a multitasker! At the moment, I’ve had to put aside one titled Looking Back For Tomorrow and concentrate on another titled Something Happened In Paris (I was lucky once, being able to go there (had never been out of the U.S.) with a stage production – as a friend – and I remember it vividly – but research, I will faithfully do)!

I have mixed feelings about the e-book phenomenon.  As a reader, I feel like a traitor when I read my Kindle (and its most likely storage of 400 or so MM books, as well as detective stories) but they’re so convenient and handy. Books tend to get dropped and lost. (I once dropped an almost-finished paperback onto the subway tracks and, stupidly, looked both ways and dropped down and then back up to retrieve it. Well . . . I had to find out how it ended!) As an author, I’d much rather be published in paperback and have the actual book in hand, as there’s something too ephemeral about e-books! I plan, for the first time, to exhibit at the Rainbow Book Fair, and it would be great to have all of my books in paperback form instead of only two!

Re: Covers! With my second book published by Dreamspinner, All By Myself, I discovered cover artist Reese Dante, who in my opinion is the greatest! I was so delighted that I requested her expertise on my next book, Mood Indigo as well as this current one.  She is outstanding, as she always has faint depictions of the scenes of the book in the background behind the figures and/or faces.  And her color palette and font choice are always exquisite, and perfectly fitting to the mood of the book!

Do I have a favorite among my stories? OMG, that’s like asking a mother if she has a favorite child.  I love all my books equally, and you would never hear me even murmur otherwise!  After all, I wouldn’t want to hurt any feelings, and I would if any one of them thought they weren’t number one!!

I came to my writing in kind of a roundabout way. I had a terrible time finding MM books that I liked to read.  I found most of them (but not all) rather weak on character and plot and heavy on minutely described sex scenes every two or three pages. To my mind, they bordered from kind of sleazy to absolute porn.  I discovered (in an Advocate article that most of the writers were women and most of the readers were youngish girls).  But . . . what about guys like me?   So, I decided that instead of just moaning, I would try to write the kind of book I favored. Writing was not so foreign to me, as I’d written four musicals, book, music and lyrics and a very successful play (Starting Over) produced at the Ninth Annual Fresh Fruit Festival).  So, figuratively, pen in hand, I forged ahead.  When I finished my first one (Seeing The Same Blue) I figured, why not go for it? So, I sent it to the firm I believed to be the Cadillac of publishing houses, Dreamspinner Press. I nearly fell off my chair when I was fortunate enough that they accepted it!  And, I was off and running. I write books heavy on plot and character, with, I hope scintillating dialogue and some titillation along the way. Luckily, I’ve found an audience that likes my kind of book and I’ve had some very nice comments on Amazon.  (Also, a few real stinkers – but that’s to be expected.)

Well, I hope I haven’t gone on too long, and that the last paragraph is not off-putting.  It’s been a real kick to be able to detail all these things about me and my books, and I thank you for the structure you provide!

Yours in whimsy,

Ken Bachtold

Friendlykenn@aol.com

 

About A Company Of Players

Leaving romantic wreckage behind him, Nick Charles and his best friend Barb Anderson use Nick’s sizable inheritance to fly to one of the most exciting places in the world—New York City—with plans to open their own theater. In doing so, they meet Ross Taylor, the handsome real estate man and actor, and Rudy his construction-worker cousin. Ross is determined to heal Nick’s fragile heart, while shy Rudy and oblivious Barb stumble toward their own connection. Will Rosie Dupree, a rigid method actress, and talented but devious Gordon Holmes destroy their theater dreams? Was choosing the original piece, Starting Over, by an unpublished young playwright the best move for opening night? Will the invited critic show up? Amid the frantic and colorful world of the New York City theater scene, Nick and Barb must open their hearts and risk everything for their endeavors to succeed—both on the stage and behind the scenes.

About the Author

Ken Bachtold 

BA & MA from San Francisco State University in Theatre (Acting and Directing) with a minor in Art.

When I constantly had trouble finding the type of book I liked to read, I finally said to myself, “Why don’t you stop moaning and write one yourself?” So I did. I was thrilled to the marrow (literally) when Dreamspinner accepted Seeing the Same Blue. Then followed acceptance of Blue Valentine Blues, part of their Valentine anthology. Next, came acceptance of All By Myself, Mood Indigo and now A Company Of Players is being released on March 22, 2017. My cup runeth over!  All books can be found on Amazon and Barnes & Noble

Before that, Outskirts Press published Love Like Lightning – Ten Stories of Love at First Sight, also on Amazon.

My original play, Starting Over (which I also directed), was just staged as part of the Ninth Annual Fresh Fruit Festival here in New York.  Audience reaction was terrific.  It was one of nine plays accepted out of 60 submitted.  It was an MM romance.  The blurb in the brochure for the festival read, “A play about love and loss.  Griff has recently lost his longtime partner.  Can he find happiness with Ben, the new neighbor down the hall?  He’s supported by his sister and opposed by his widowed mother, now remarried to a homophobic preacher.”

 I’ve also written 4 musicals, book, music and lyrics.

Saloon (loosely suggested by the old melodrama The Drunkard) which opened The Gatetway Dinner Theatre in New Jersey to great reviews (I can forward them if you wish). It was subsequently optioned by Broadway producer Jerry Schloschberg (who, at the time was, producing the revival of On The Town with Bernadette Peters), but a show sluggishly following the old material opened and closed the same night, and he backed off thinking there was now a “stigma” on the material.

 The Facts of Life (a musical about War, Prejudice and Aging, circa the ‘60s) was written at the BMI Music Workshop, taught by Broadway legend, Lyman Engle, and only after several auditions before acceptance in the class.  It was deemed worthy of a staged reading there.

 Boo! based on the old gothic novel The Castle Spectre was done by several regional theatres.

I was hired to doctor a musical based on Iphigenia At Aulis, called The Winds Of Aulis.  I changed the name to Dilemma! and wrote a subplot and mostly new lyrics.  Although the play was fully backed, it never reached production and I never found out why.

 I’ve written and staged numerous night club and cabaret acts and taught singing for the musical stage for 15 years.

Contact Ken at:

  • Website:              www.kenbachtold
  • Twitter                 Ken Bachtold
  • Facebook            Ken Bachtold
  • Tumblr                 Ken Bachtold

In the Spotlight: Patience (Dublin Virtues #1) by Helena Stone (giveaway)

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Buy Links: Pride Publishing (Early download)


Pre-Order: Amazon US | Amazon UK  (March 28)


Cover: Emmy Ellis


Length: 62,945 words


Publisher: Pride Publishing

Blurb


Patience is a virtue. But what if you wait too long?


While Xander Ekman’s dream of becoming a successful artist has come true, his love life has gone from bad to worse. Sick of the endless string of one-night stands, he accepts the challenge when his best friend, Erik, bets him that he can’t be celibate for a month. Now all he needs is a reminder to keep his distance in the heat of the moment.


Troy Moriarty doesn’t have time for love. He’s too busy trying to keep his recently opened tattoo parlor afloat. Besides, ever since the man who was supposed to be his business partner abandoned him to run the shop on his own, he has a hard time trusting others.


When Xander turns to Troy for a tattoo that will remind him to be patient, the attraction is instant. But faced with Xander’s month of celibacy, Troy’s trust issues, and a nemesis lurking in the background, their relationship may be doomed before it has a chance to begin.

Author Bio

Helena Stone can’t remember a life before words and reading. After growing up in a household where no holiday or festivity was complete without at least one new book, it’s hardly surprising she now owns more books than shelf space while her Kindle is about to explode.


The urge to write came as a surprise. The realisation that people might enjoy her words was a shock to say the least. Now that the writing bug has well and truly taken hold, Helena can no longer imagine not sharing the characters in her head and heart with the rest of the world.


Having left the hustle and bustle of Amsterdam for the peace and quiet of the Irish Country side she divides her time between reading, writing, long and often wet walks with the dog, her part-time job in a library, a grown-up daughter and her ever loving and patient husband.


Helena can be found in the following places: 

 

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A Free Dreamer Review: Strays (Urban Soul #2) by Garrett Leigh

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Work, sleep, work, repeat. Nero’s lonely life suits him just fine until his best friend, Cass, asks him to take on a new apprentice—a beautiful young man who’s never set foot in a professional kitchen. Despite his irritation and his lifelong ability to shut the world out, Nero is mesmerised by the vibrant stray, especially when he learns what drove him to seek sanctuary on Nero’s battered old couch.

Lenny Mitchell is living under a cloud of fear. Pursued by a stalker, he has nowhere left to run until Nero offers him a port in a storm—a job at the hottest restaurant in Shepherd’s Bush. Kitchen life proves heady and addictive, and it’s not long before he finds himself falling hard and fast for the man who has taken him in.

Fast-forward a month and a neither man can imagine life without the other, but one thing stands in their way: a lifetime of horrors Nero can’t bring himself to share with Lenny. Or can he? For the first time ever, happiness is there for the taking, and Nero must learn to embrace it before fate steps in and rips it away.

After I pretty much inhaled part “Misfits”, part one of the “Urban Soul” series, I was extremely relieved to already have “Strays” waiting on my Kindle. While “Strays” is technically part two of the series, it works as a standalone. The MCs from book one to get their page-time, but they’re introduced well. However, I see absolutely no reason why you shouldn’t want to read “Misfits”!

Just like part one, “Strays” was absolutely brilliant. I loved every second of it and just couldn’t put it down. Lenny and Nero make for an incredibly hot couple and the stalker-part added an interesting twist to the story.

Nero isn’t a nice guy. He’s rude and he doesn’t make friends easily. And he’s definitely not the boyfriend-type. He’s been through quite a lot and it takes him a long time to open up to Lenny. I liked that they were both honest about the troubles Nero’s (understandable) hesitation caused and how they reacted to it. Nero is an intriguing character. While he’s definitely not the easiest person to be around, he can be genuinely kind, if he wants. I loved how he comes over as this super-macho kind of guy, but has no trouble admitting he likes boys wearing eye-liner.

Lenny is a sweet guy. He’s far easier to like than Nero but no less interesting. He’s tough in his own way and I really liked that about him.

At first glance, this couple might come off as a stereotype found in many m/m romance books: macho (sort of) closeted guy and younger, effeminate man. That usually leads to the older guy being in charge of the relationship and that’s something I can’t stand. But in this case, Nero and Lenny are very much equal. There’s nobody clearly “in charge” and I really liked that.

The stalker part was a bit predictable toward the end, tbh. Other than that, I think it was done really well.

Just like in the first book, the setting is described vividly. London and the restaurant kitchen felt very much alive to me. There was never any doubt as to where this book was set and where the characters are from. I really like books with such a strong sense of place, it gives them something unique.

Long story short, “Strays” is just as brilliant as part one of the series. It’s very different and might be more appealing, if you don’t like ménages. The sex is still smoking hot. I really hope there’ll be a third part in the series. I just love the whole universe.

The cover was done by the author herself. It’s in tune with that of part one. I love that tattoo, it’s so hot.

Sales Links:  Riptide Publishing | Amazon

Book details:

ebook, 249 pages

Expected publication: March 27th 2017 by Riptide Publishing

An Ali Review: One Bullet by Casey Wolfe

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Rating: 2.5 of 5 stars
When Ethan Brant was shot, he found himself dealing with severe PTSD and unable to do his job as a police officer any longer. With the aid of Detective Shawn Greyson, the man who saved his life, Ethan not only finds himself again but discovers love as well.

Shawn’s life growing up was less than ideal, however, he overcame that to become who he is today. That doesn’t mean he isn’t missing something in his life. What Shawn hadn’t realized, upon first meeting, was that Ethan could give him all that and more.

One bullet changed both their lives.
I liked the premise of this story but I didn’t really like the execution.  There was a lot going on and I think it was too much for such a short book.  The book jumps from snippet to snippet but most of the major relationship dynamics take place off page. As a result I did not feel the chemistry between the two main characters.   Also, I was not invested in them or their relationship and I struggled to be interested in the plot. 
I don’t have any complaints about the technical aspects of the writing but as for content I was just not drawn in.  Everything was too superficial for my tastes.  Overall, this was just ok.
Cover by Natasha Snow:  I like the cover a lot.  It catches your eye and it fits well with the plot of the story.

Sale Links: NineStar | Amazon | Kobo

ebook, 153 pages
Published: March 27, 2017, by NineStar Press
ISBN: 9781945952814
Edition Language: English