A Chaos Moondrawn Review: Wrong Way Home (Criminal Delights: Taken) by K.A. Merikan

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

This series has very dark themes. Each book is by a different author and can be read as standalones. Please pay attention to the trigger warnings and tags.

The first two chapters are Colin’s POV as he takes a new route home to visit his parents and ends up seeing a murder. The horror elements are well done. I understand the negotiating–believing maybe if Colin tried to offer favors it might save his life or improve his quality of life in the situation. I think for me, the attraction was too quick on Colin’s part after what he witnessed. Chapter three shows Tarin’s POV. He’s not a psychopath, but he is a survivalist and definitely follows his own rules and moral code. After the initial awkwardness in transitioning them from captor/hostage to actual lovers, the book gets very intriguing when absorbing the reader in what might be Stockholm Syndrome. The sex here is raw, wild, and brutal the first few times and then gets intense with intimacy as the book progresses. As the rest of the book alternates between them, both characters get their layers peeled away.

I liked the blurb and got drawn into the possibilities presented, but the book ends up having a very different feel than what I thought it would be. The original murder is explained and Tarin ends up being quite thoughtful, if stubborn and damaged by past trauma. Colin starts out as not terribly happy and filled with anxiety about decisions and disappointing his family. He and Tarin are strangely well suited and while he may not realise it, his true personality comes out once he feels “safe” enough to fight with Tarin. The noncon/dubcon part of the scenario would have always hung over them unless it was addressed; so while it is addressed, I think I might have liked Colin and Tarin to have more time apart and Colin to have come back on his own, on equal footing. I’ll not spoil it, but there was an opportunity to bring some of the horror elements from the beginning, back into the story and the authors chose a different path. It is also awkward in parts and the plot is a bit thin. Overall, this is a surprisingly sweet romance about two men who might have never met but for fate. They both learn what having a relationship actually means (working together towards a common goal, compromise, listening to each other, respect) and that they are stronger and happier together than apart.

The cover design is by Natasha Snow. Almost all the covers by these authors are dark and stylized with bright fonts. The covers for this series are all similar. This shows Talin and makes sense to the story on more than one level, so I thought it was well done.

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Universal LinkExclusive to Amazon and Available to Borrow with Kindle Unlimited
 

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 264 pages
Published April 15th 2019 by Acerbi & Villani ltd
ASINB07P9MVC31
Edition Language English

Love The Supernatural? Sean Kerr is Talking Writing, the Supernatural and His Latest Release, Dead Camp (interview,excerpt and giveaway)

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Dead Camp (Dead Camp #1) by Sean Kerr
Release Date: January 1, 2016

Goodreads Link
Publisher: Extasy Books
Cover Artist: Latrisha Waters

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is so happy to have author Sean Kerr here today to share his thoughts on writing, the supernatural and his latest release, Dead Camp.  Welcome, Sean.

✍✍✍

  • Why do you write?

I love to create stories and characters, it’s a fantastic escape from every- day living. I love to take an idea and start developing a story and characters around it, and I love to see where it takes me! If I am lucky enough that an audience likes it and reads it, then that really is the ultimate thrill!

  • When did you decide to become a writer?

It was not a conscious decision. I have written since I was a child, and I am now 46! But when I decided to write Dead Camp, when the idea became so powerful and would not let me sleep, I decided that I would do everything in my power to get a publisher and get the work into as good a situation as possible. And it worked! Extasy books have been fabulous.

  • What genre are your books?

Supernatural, paranormal, horror, gay, a general sprinkling of erotica, conspiracy, history. Have I left anything out?

  • What draws you to this genre?

I have always loved supernatural/paranormal books, LOVED Twilight, LOVED the True Blood books, and that sent me off wanting to do my own spin on that genre. Plus I have always wanted to write a Vampire story, but one that changed the conventions, and hopefully does something a bit different with the genre.

  • What made you decide to sit down and actually start something?

I had an idea and it would not let me sleep. The idea grew and grew and I knew it would take a number of books to see it through, so I had to write it. I started Dead Camp to see where it would lead me, and now I know exactly where it is going and how the very last page of the series will look. I’m so excited about it that it stops me from sleeping because I keep seeing bits of it in my head. It’s an obsession, as is writing in general I think.

  • Do you write full-time or part-time?

Part time. I have an Interior Design business in Cardiff called Home Zone Design, with my fabulous business partner Jayne, so that takes up all my working days sadly. If I could walk away from that and write all day I would, but sadly we cannot afford to hire anyone so that isn’t going to happen lol!

  • Do you have a special time to write or how is your day structured?

I try to do a couple of hours a night and I try to do as much as I can on days off. However, my debut novel Dead Camp has just gone live on extasy books and Amazon and all my time has been spent doing social media stuff and trying to get the book out there, so I have been a bit lack of late!

  • How do you think you’ve evolved creatively?

Not sure about that. I do think my writing has improved dramatically over this process, my editors at extasy have been fantastic! I’ve always had a pretty active imagination, and this series is pushing that to the limits and I love it. The one thing that does happen when you write it that the more you do it, the better you become, and the more ideas you have!

  • What have you written?

Dead Camp is my first published work. I have written loads over the years, lots of bad stuff, lots of screen plays. I have a file full of half-finished things and ideas that I am looking forward to getting back to once the Dead Camp series is finished. While to go there yet though lol.

  • Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just seeing where an idea takes you?

I start from a rough outline, and before I start writing I always know where I need each character to go and where the story needs to go. Dead Camp is going to be a big series, possibly 6 books, and I know exactly where each one will be, start, end, and how each one affects the next, and I know exactly how it ends.

  • How do you market your books?

Facebook, twitter, Goodreads, yahoo groups. That is my main thrust at the moment and believe me it all takes a lot of doing. How effective it is I don’t know yet, I am a very small fish in a very, very large sea.

  • Is there any marketing technique you used that had an immediate impact on your sales figures?

Facebook. As soon as I announced the publication of the book, people were buying it. Also, because I am lucky enough to have a fantastic publisher in extasy books, they also sell it from their website, and they have a huge following, so hopefully at some point that will kick in.

  • What advice would you give to aspiring authors?

Never give up. Keep writing, even if it’s bad, because you will improve. If you have an idea, go with it. Don’t get sidetracked either, as I am now lol. You have to write all the time, to develop your style and your skills. Never take ‘NO’ as the final answer. I was refused by every agent in the Readers & Writers Handbook, but just when I thought there was no point in going on, I approached six publishers directly and within three weeks I had three offers.

Sadly, no-one is going to do it for you, so you have to do it for yourself!

  • Give us an insight into your main character. What does he do that is so special?

Eli is so arrogant and so self-assured, that you can’t help but love him. It’s not so much what he does that is special, it’s the horror he has been through. He has been through so much that you would think it could not get any worse. But as Dead Camp begins, it does get worse, and his history unfolds through the books to the point where you really need something good to happen to him. He thinks his arrogance and his sexy attitude can get him through it all, but he discovers that nothing is further from the truth.

  • Where do your ideas come from?

The strangest of places. Dead Camp came to me while watching a World War two film. Documentaries on the Discovery channel also fuel my imagination. Also, there are a couple of future books I would like to write inspired by some terrible nightmare I had as a child that have always stayed with me.

  • What is the hardest thing about writing?

Getting the time to write!

  • What was the hardest thing about writing your latest book?

Finding someone to take it seriously and publish it. Agents didn’t want to know. Three publishers did straight away.

  • Who is your favorite character in your book and why?

Eli, because he is so naughty and I would love to be him!

  • Who is your least favorite character and why?

Melek. He is so bad that you can’t help but love him. Not all evil is as dark as you think.

  • What is your next project?

Dead Camp book two out so I am trying to get the third one written as we speak!

  • Who is your favorite fictional character and why?

Count Dracula. I have read that book so many times I can almost recite it! He is not strictly evil, and I think in the end he just wants to be loved. That feels as relevant today as it did when it was first written.

  • What one person from history would you like to meet and why?

Judy Garland. I’m gay, need I say more?

  • If there was one thing you could do to change the world, what would it be?

End poverty.

  • Who is your favorite author?

Charlaine Harris

  • What is one thing you hate about being a writer?

That I have to work in a shop in order to survive instead of writing all day lol.

    Thank you, Sean!  That was outstanding.  Now I can’t wait to read your story.  More about Dead Camp below….

RC

Blurb

Eli is an ancient vampire with an ego the size of a planet and a sex drive to match, but his tumultuous past left him broken, so he hides from humanity and cowers from love, left to endure the crushing guilt that haunts his every waking moment. Even his best friend Malachi, a ghost who is hopelessly in love with Eli, remains unaware of all that transpired in London. Malachi can never know the truth.

When the Angel Daniyyel pays an unwelcome visit, Eli must face his secrets, secrets that he has tried so long to hide. To make matters worse, a chance encounter with the most beautiful man he has ever seen shatters his beloved isolation, pushing him into the world of the living once more. Something about this strange man seems so familiar, but Eli can’t even remember who he was before he became a vampire, never mind explain the unwanted emotions the enigmatic stranger ignites in his dead heart. So Eli has a choice—return to the world that ruined him, or continue his self-imposed exile with no hope of salvation.

 

Pages or Words: 87,422 words, 260 pages

Categories: Dark Themes, Erotica, Fiction, Gay Fiction, Historical, Horror, M/M Romance, Mystery, Paranormal, Romance, Vampires/Demons, Thriller

Excerpt:

Three prisoners had died in my block that night, two elderly and one young man not old enough to grow pubes. It sickened me. Never, in all my years, had I witnessed such a callous waste of human life. And then to see my fellow prisoners undressing the dead, striping their cold stiff bodies before my unbelieving eyes horrified me even more, and I clung onto Jakob’s broken body for dear life. All around me the clunk of bodies against wood and concrete. My eyes tried not to see and my ears tried not to hear.

A cold clammy hand gently caressed my arm and I nearly shot off my shelf in shock. I didn’t scream. I refused to scream.

“My friend, I’m sorry, my friend, but you must undress him. The rubbish men will be here soon and you must strip him of all clothing before they take him. Please, you must do this for him—they will be less kind than you. Do you understand?”

“Why? Why must we do this?”

“His clothes are of value, my friend. They will be re-used for the next intake.”

“And what of his body, what will become of Jakob?”

“You don’t want to know, my friend.” His whispered words made every hair on my body stand on end. A sound outside caused him to return to his unsavoury task with renewed urgency. “Quickly, they are here.”

What followed felt like a dream. I had undressed many a man under many circumstances, but that was a first. Already poor Jakob stiffened, and it pained me to hear and feel his bones crack as I gently prised his pale thin body from the clothes. I whispered my apologies into his unhearing ears and I hated my eyes for glancing across his pale dead flesh.

I had to free them, all of them. That place, that death camp, it had to end.

I lifted his dead naked body into my arms. Emotion, so alien to me, invaded the shrivelled blackness that was my soul, and I knew my eyes betrayed my grief. Emotions made you weak. Emotions made you vulnerable, emotions hurt. And I was hurting. The passing of that human, that mortal man I had known for less than a day, had brought back that affliction from which I had been running from for so very long.

I had only opened my heart to the world again but for the briefest of moments. And already I felt pain.

Gideon hurt me. He made me feel unloved, unwanted, he made me feel ugly. How I would crave for his touch, how desperate I was for his love, to feel the thrill of his fingers upon my bare flesh, to feel his attraction to me, to feel wanted. But all he ever did was refuse me. Every time I tried to touch him, he turned me away. He was not in the mood, he told me to come back later.

Come back later.

But later never came.

I carried that pale body into the grey wet misery of morning. The sun was trying desperately to penetrate the thick layers of brooding clouds that clung stubbornly over the camp, but the sun was losing. Rain dripped incessantly from the skies, melting the remaining snow into a muddy slush. Grey skies, grey ground, grey people. The camp drained the colour out of everything. Welwelsburg was like me, a vampire, sucking the life out of everything it encountered, sucking away hope and dignity, leaving nothing but pale grey husks clinging to the brink of existence.

Two men stood next to a large flatbed trolley. Dead, naked bodies lay crumpled in a pile on top of the trolley, legs and arms sticking out at all angles like some grotesque starfish. I saw children amongst the corpses.

Pale white flickering figures surrounded the trolley. Insubstantial wisps of lives spent before their time. The rubbish men looked at me expectantly but I could not move for the sight of those spectral beings and I clutched Jakob’s dead body tightly to my chest, unwilling to relinquish my charge. If I put him on that trolley then he would be dead, another lump of cold meat on the pile. He deserved more than that.

The ghostly figures turned to look at me, each one knowing me, seeing me, seeing me see them. And they smiled at me. Cold shivering prickles erupted across my skin as their eyes took me in and they were such kind eyes, such trusting eyes. A figure pushed its way between them, its shadowy form brushing gently against the others as it came to stand before me.

Buy the book

Extasy books  | Amazon UK  | Amazon US  | Barnes & Noble Nook | Kobo

 

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Meet the author:

I think that as I approach that milestone that is fifty, I must be one of the oldest gamers on the face of this earth. Many a day you will find me lashed to my PS4 enjoying a good session of Skyrim. Who doesn’t love a good session of Skyrim?
I love writing—I have done it since I was a child when I would happily write about the latest episode of Doctor Who (Tom Baker in those days) in my schoolbooks. Growing up and becoming a business owner with my friend Jayne left little time to pursue my dream of publication, but of late the desire and the compulsion to put words onto paper have once again dominated my life so that now, my laptop has become surgically fused to my fingertips.
There is something desperately satisfying about telling a story. My fascination with History, Religion and Conspiracy theories have, in this instance, gone hand-in-hand with my love of all things vampire, fantasy, sci-fi and horror. I drove my parents nuts when I was young because that was all I would read about in books, all I would watch on television, but they have held me in good stead, and long may my obsession with the subjects continue, at least, that is, until the day they put me in my own wooden box. And imagination is such a wonderful thing. I once had a rather vivid dream about David Tennant and the Tardis console, but I could not possibly go into details about that here. Let’s just say that my polarity was well and truly reversed.
Dead Camp is just the beginning. I have to check my knickers every day at the thought that this book is now in the public domain. My first book, and I hope the first of many. And to those out there who love to write, who love to transport us to new worlds, or old worlds with a twisted perspective, I say to you keep going. I never thought I would ever see my work available to download, and thanks to eXtasy Books, the dream that I always thought unobtainable has finally come true. So thank you all at eXtasy, I am one happy homosexual thanks to you, and thank you the reader for taking the time to read this strange tale and allowing Eli and the incomparable Malachi into your lives.
And now I really need Skyrim.

Where to find the author:

 


Tour Dates & Stops:

29-Mar: Full Moon Dreaming, Velvet Panic, BFD Book Blog

5-Apr: Rednecks and Romance, Jessie G. Books, Hearts on Fire, The Dark Arts

12-Apr: Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words

19-Apr: Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews, Inked Rainbow Reads, Emotion In Motion, Book Lovers 4Ever

26-Apr: Bonkers About Books, Divine Magazine, Nephy Hart, The Hat Party

3-May: My Fiction Nook, MM Book Escape, Bayou Book Junkie

10-May: Dawn’s Reading Nook, Cathy Brockman Romances, Unquietly Me

17-May: Kirsty Loves Books, The Novel Approach

24-May: Elisa – My Reviews and Ramblings, Havan Fellows

31-May: MM Good Book Reviews, Making It Happen, Love Bytes

7-Jun: Happily Ever Chapter, Alpha Book Club

14-Jun: Molly Lolly, A.M. Leibowitz, Outrageous Heroes

Final

Giveaway

Enter to win.

 

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Our Spotlight: The Necromancers Dance by SJ Himes ( excerpt and giveaway)

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The Necromancer's Dance E-Book Cover

The Necromancer’s Dance (The Beacon Hill Sorcerer #1) by SJ Himes
Release Date: February 25, 2016

Goodreads Link
Publisher: SJ Himes
Cover Artist: Kellie Dennis of Book Cover By Design
Cover Photo by Dan Skinner

Blurb:

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

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

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

Death stalks the streets of Boston’s historic Beacon Hill….and there is no one more suited to battle against death than a necromancer.

 

Pages or Words: 212 pages

Categories: Dark Themes, M/M Romance, Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy

Excerpt:

He must have passed out, too damn tired from a long day at work, interrupted sleep, and a semi-major working that consumed a huge portion of his reserves. It took power to use power, and even though Angel fueled the spell with ambient magic, he still had to control and shape the working. It was a bitch, doing magic cold like that, and he would have been better off if he hadn’t gone into it stressed out and tired. Not to mention he couldn’t remember the last time he ate anything more substantial than tea and a muffin. Isaac moving out meant Angel forgot to eat more often than not.

Angel woke wrapped up in his favorite blanket, his bed warm and welcoming. Something was tickling his face, and he worked a hand free from under the blanket to swipe at his cheek. Feeling cool skin and soft lips, Angel opened his eyes.

He was in Simeon’s arms, laying half on his clothed chest, their faces so close together the vampire’s deep green eyes were all he could see.

Angel’s hand was caught up in Simeon’s, their fingers intertwining. Angel’s eyes drifted shut as Simeon closed the tiny distance between them, his soft and cool lips ghosting over Angel’s. He pulled in a deep breath of Simeon-flavored air, the vampire’s scent filling his mouth and nose.

The scent of fresh blood was in there too—Simeon must have fed before taking Angel home, the potent tang of hot metal impossible to miss. The sensation of Simeon’s lips barely touching Angel’s did unrepeatable things to his nervous system, setting him on fire with a cool flame.

His body jerked, just a little, freezing and alternately relaxing as Simeon’s lips settled over his in a full kiss, with a hint of tongue and the nip of sharp teeth.

Buy the book: Amazon

 

Meet the Author:

I’m a thirty something woman with way too big an imagination, but that comes in handy when I’m writing. I have been writing since I was a child, when I took a four-page assignment on what I was going to do on summer vacation and turned it into a 100 page fantasy epic all written by hand…in crayons. No joke.

I work a day job, but I can’t share for who, since the Old Man isn’t as liberated as the people who read my books. I’m married, I have furbabies, and I live with loved ones. I adore a certain show about a British consulting detective and his grumpy army doctor, and that spawned an addiction to Johnlock fanfiction, which then evolved into me writing it. Gawd, that’s embarrassing. Put this down in the TMI section of my Bio, okay? I enjoy martial arts, movies where things blow up, and I wish I lived in a Marvel movie.

I live in the beautiful and lonely Berkshire County in Massachusetts, and I see way more wildlife than I care to on a daily basis (bears!). My perfect day is reading surrounded by friends and family who don’t think it’s odd I want to hang out but not talk, and my favorite scent of all time is a cool fall evening with leaves burning…. less a scent, and more of an experience.

Where to find the author:

Tour Dates & Stops:

Parker Williams, Divine Magazine, Man2ManTastic, Decadent Delights, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words,

Bayou Book Junkie, Kirsty Loves Books, The Dark Arts, Mikky’s World of Books, Inked Rainbow Reads,

The Hat Party, Happily Ever Chapter, A.M. Leibowitz, MM Good Book Reviews, Unquietly Me,

Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews, Full Moon Dreaming, Butterfly-O-Meter, Molly Lolly, Velvet Panic,

Book Lovers 4Ever, The Jena Wade, Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents, Cheekypee Reads and Reviews,

Outrageous Heroes

 

Giveaway

Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.  Link and prize provided by the author and Pride Promotions.

 

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