A VVivacious Release Day Review: Thanks a Lot, John LeClair by Johanna Parkhurst

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Rating: 5 Stars out of 5
 
thanks-a-lot-john-leclairEmmitt LaPoint loves playing hockey. Hockey has been his refuge from the world ever since he was little. He is the golden boy of Colby, Vermont what with being the captain of the high school hockey team and having a near perfect GPA but he is also gay.
 
Emmitt finds it hard to reconcile his love for Dusty with his love for hockey because as he knows it there are no gay hockey players in the NHL. But when things between Dusty and him deteriorate, he has to take a stand for what he wants in his life irrespective of what his Dad or the world at large seems to want for him.
 
My only bone to pick with this book is that when it ended I wanted more! Lots more! I almost wish I could read about Emmitt forever.
 
This book was engaging and so very interesting. It was also incredibly well written. One of things I didn’t like about the first book was that it seemed to be composed entirely of facts with very little exposition. Also the lack of exposition made me feel that things in the first book were happening at break neck speed which could have been intentional on the author’s part but it put a dent in my reading experience. So I am delighted to acknowledge that those dents in the first book were completely hammered out in this book. It was just so beautifully written.
 
This story was written in first person and I have realized that first person narratives are especially lovely when you can relate to the narrator and that is what I loved about this book, the fact that it made me fall in love with Emmitt. I pretty much already loved Dusty, Casey and the Mortons but as the first book is mostly focused on Dusty’s life at home, I hadn’t really formed any opinion on Emmitt. So this book was an eye opener for me. One of the things I loved about Emmitt was that he realized that being impressive and courageous can actually be very tiring, even if it comes instinctually to you, when people start to expect it from you. But in this regard I loved what Coach Jackson had to say, I think I fell in love with him over his words.
 
“You think success is some trophy you put on your shelf? Some number you graduate high school with? Success isn’t something you hold up for other people to look at. It’s a life that’s filled with happiness. Hope. Meaning. Things like that. That’s what the goal is. You end up with any of those things, and it won’t matter how many trophies and numbers you have to show off.”
 
This book deals with so many themes but the most consistent theme that runs throughout this book is that of coming out. But don’t let that statement pigeon hole this book for you because it has so much else to teach. One thing I love about the young adult/new adult genre is that I always get to learn something and on that count this book is a treasure trove. And then there was hockey.  Ice Hockey is a sport I have fallen in love with only on the basis of what I have read of it in mm romance novels, I have no idea if I will enjoy its real life counterpart but I am not in any hurry to find out especially because I have really fallen in love with how it is portrayed in these books and especially this one. I love the whole new dimension that sports can add to a story and I loved how that aspect was used in this book.
 
This book is a must read. It is awfully amazing.
 
Cover Art by Anne Cain. I liked the cover but somehow I can’t agree with the choice of the font for the title what with all its sharp edges and the decision to have the title spread over so much of the cover.
Sales Links
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Book Details:
ebook, 204 pages
Expected publication: December 15th 2016 by Harmony Ink Press
ISBN 1634774299 (ISBN13: 9781634774291)
Edition LanguageEnglish
URL

Suzanne van Rooyen Shares Thoughts on Writing, and the release of ‘Obscura’ Burning (release day author guest post)

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obscura-burning

Obscura Burning by Suzanne van Rooyen

Published:  Harmony Ink Press
November 10, 2016

Cover Design: Terry Cronje of Cronje Design Co. http://cronjedesign.com/

Goodreads

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Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to have Suzanne van Rooyen here today.  Suzanne agreed to share her thoughts about writing and her latest novel, Obscura Burning.  Welcome, Suzanne, thanks for answering some questions for us.

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  • Where do you normally draw your inspiration for a book from? A memory, a myth, a place or journey, or something far more personal?

It really depends. Inspiration comes to me from so many different places, but most often it tends to come from art or music. I regularly trawl through Deviantart for images that speak to me or demand a story. I similarly often find myself imagining the backstory or certain songs. Some of those imaginings have turned into stories and some are still waiting to be written.

  • Are you a planner or a pantzer when writing a story? And why?

I used to be a pantzer, but I’ve come to realize the importance of having an outline, even if it’s just a seven-point plot arc or rough sketch of the protagonist’s character arc. Since I’ve started writing fantasy, planning has become imperative in order to keep track not only of characters and plot, but of all the world-building. These days I rarely start writing without having some kind of plan to work from.

  • If you had a character you’ve written you would write differently now at this time in your writing career, who would it be and why?

This is an interesting question. I pretty much had this opportunity with Obscura Burning since this is the second edition. Harmony Ink allowed me a round of edits and I was able to rework a few story points, but most importantly, my protagonist. I must’ve been in a pretty dark place when I originally wrote this story because Kyle was so bitter and resentful. I couldn’t really relate to him anymore so, without compromising his core personality, I reworded a few things and let other things affect him to a greater or lesser extent, making him a slightly less unlikeable person – I hope!

  • Can a author have favorites among their characters and do you have them?

Hm, I’m not sure. It’s a bit like asking a parent to say who their favourite child is. I have moments where I might prefer one or the other, but I love them all!

  • If you were to be stranded on a small demi-planet, island, or god forbid LaGuardia in a snow storm, what books would you take to read or authors on your comfort list?

Anything and everything by Neil Gaiman. I’d also want the Raven Boys series by Maggie Stiefvater to keep me company. Those two authors are quite easily my favourites.

  • Were you an early reader or were you read to and what childhood books had an impact on you as a child that you remember to this day and why?

Both, my mom always read to me at bedtime and I started reading by myself or with my parents from a really young age. Books had a huge impact on my life, one in particular that still haunts me is The Voices of Silence by Bel Mooney about a little girl growing up in Romania at the time of the 1989 revolution.

  • If you were writing your life as a romance novel, what would the title be?

As a romance novel? Um, I have no idea… I rarely read romance so I’m quite clueless about good titles, but if ever I were to write my memoir or autobiography, I’d want to call it ‘Remember me as a time of day,‘ which is a song title from one of my favourite bands, Explosions in the Sky.

obscura-burning

Blurb

The world’s going to end in fire…and it’s all Kyle’s fault.


Kyle Wolfe’s world is about to crash and burn. Just weeks away from graduation, a fire kills Kyle’s two best friends and leaves him permanently scarred. A fire that Kyle accidentally set the night he cheated on his boyfriend Danny with their female friend, Shira. That same day, a strange new planet, Obscura, appears in the sky. And suddenly Kyle’s friends aren’t all that dead anymore. Each time Kyle goes to sleep, he awakens to two different realities. In one, his boyfriend Danny is still alive, but Shira is dead. In the other, it’s Shira who’s alive…and now they’re friends with benefits.

Shifting between realities is slowly killing him, and he’s not the only one dying. The world is dying with him. He’s pretty sure Obscura has something to do with it, but with his parents’ marriage imploding and realities shifting each time he closes his eyes, Kyle has problems enough without being the one in charge of saving the world…

Buy Links

Harmony Ink Press

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Author Bio

Suzanne is a tattooed storyteller from South Africa. She currently lives in Finland where she finds the heavy metal soothing and the cold, dark forests inspiring. Although she has a Master’s degree in music, Suzanne prefers conjuring strange worlds and creating quirky characters. When she grows up, she wants to be an elf – until then, she spends her time (when not writing) climbing, buying far too many books, and entertaining her shiba inu, Lego.

Author Links

A Jeri Release Day Review: Turn the World Upside Down by Nyrae Dawn

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Rating: 4.5 Stars out of 5

turn-the-world-upside-downOne of the things I love about young adult or new adult (YA/NA) books is that there is so much story there. Because they are generally about younger people- no longer “kids”, but people on the cusp of adulthood- there is very little, if any sex. And while I love a good sex scene in a book, when there isn’t that page filler to fall back on, the reader gets more story. More thoughts, more feelings, more people around the characters we are reading about. And this book had all of the thoughts, feelings and people that made it such a great book.

Hunter is pissed off at the world. After realizing a betrayal by his father, he blames himself for not seeing what was right there. So he is mad. REALLY mad. When that anger causes him to trash school property and accidentally hit a teacher, his mother brings him to New Horizons- an inpatient facility for teens- as a last resort. Hunter resorts to begging, but through her tears, his mom makes him check in.

Although he vows to himself to just get through his “time” at New Horizons, he slowly begins to come out of his shell. He finds the facility much like high school, with the popular and unpopular kids. And while he was known as a popular kid before, it is with the unpopular misfit kids that he finds himself. And Stray.

Stray. I fell in love with him almost immediately. A foster child who is a cutter, his foster parents sent him there for help. He doesn’t believe they will always be his foster parents though. Because people always leave him. But even though he believes that, he does everything to show his friends how much he cares about them. Even the new guy Hunter.

This book was a journey of self discovery and acceptance for Hunter. They incremental ways he realized small things about himself which joined together so that he could learn big things about himself were so well thought out, so introspective, so heart breaking. People immediately think sad when they hear the word depression. They don’t think anger, rage, self loathing. But it absolutely can be that and Nyrae Dawn shows it beautifully.

Ms Dawn does not shy away from the realities of mental illness at all. There was not glossing over of the ugly, no miraculous recoveries. In fact, this book had me in tears more that once. Because it was just so real.

This could be a tough read for some, but it is so worth it. Hunter and Stray crawl right into your heart- as do the rest of their friends.

Cover art by

Sales Links

        

Book Details:

ebook, 200 pages
Expected publication: October 20th 2016 by Harmony Ink Press
ISBN 1634774191 (ISBN13: 9781634774192)
Edition LanguageEnglish

A Free Dreamer Young Adult Release Day Review: Running with the Pack by A.M. Burns and Caitlin Ricci

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

running-with-the-packFinn is about to start his senior year of high school when he and his family move from Austin, Texas, to Woodland Park, Colorado. Everything is different—even the elevation—and Finn’s having a hard time getting used to his new home. Life takes a turn for the better when he meets Ivan Dubovasky at a farmers’ market. Finn finds not only a close new friend but a fulfilling volunteer position at the High Mountain Wolf and Wild Dog Center, which Ivan’s family runs. Before long Finn develops an affinity for the wolves under the center’s protection.

Things only get better for Finn when he starts a relationship with Ivan; and Ivan’s best friend, Adrian, who’s asexual, completes their small pack. But it all comes crashing down when the bully plaguing Adrian crosses the line and Adrian goes missing. Finn and Ivan are determined to bring their boyfriend home safe, but they might not be able to do it alone. Luckily there’s a special wolf ready to lend a paw.

For some reason, I fully expected this book to have werewolves. It took me a while to realize that the wolves were perfectly normal wolves and nobody was secretly a werewolf. That definitely didn’t stop me from fully enjoying “Running with the Pack”, though.

Reading this story was truly delightful. The MCs were adorable and were a perfect match. The angst level was pretty low and there wasn’t a whole lot of drama either, but I was never bored. I didn’t even realize I was essentially inhaling this book until I was almost done, just over 24 hours after I’d started it.

There are a lot of m/m books out there with a poly relationship. There also a few m/m books with an asexual character. But I’ve never seen both in one book, and neither in a YA story.

I loved how natural it was for Adrian, Finn and Ivan to become a trio. Adrian’s asexuality and the poly aspect of their relationship were portrayed in a very positive light and felt absolutely natural. There simply was no other way for either of them. They just fit. And I also loved that they started their relationship as a trio, rather than as a couple adding a third party.

It probably wouldn’t have hurt if they’d talked more about their relationship. But they are teenagers and relationship talk is hard for anybody, so it didn’t bother me too much. I did, however, feel like we were missing something from Finn’s past. The authors kept making implications about his old school and the reasons why his family decided to move so far away, but we never really got a good explanation. It just felt like there was more to the story than was being said.

Overall, “Running with the Pack” is a truly lovely YA story and definitely also suitable for younger readers. There is only one scene with sexual action and that happens completely off-page.

I would love to have a sequel where the three of them figure out how to be together in the long run. I’d especially love to find out how involved Adrian will get in the sexual part of their relationship. I don’t know if the authors are planning on writing a follow-up or leave this as a standalone, but I’m all for another visit with these three wonderful boys.

If you like YA, asexual MCs and/or poly relationships, then you should give this book a try. Chances are, you’ll be as charmed as me.

Cover: The cover by Bree Archer isn’t really to my tastes. It’s a bit cheesy, tbh.

Sales Links

Harmony Ink Press

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Book details:

ebook, 180 pages
Expected publication: September 8th 2016 by Harmony Ink Press
ISBN 1634770641 (ISBN13: 9781634770644)
Edition LanguageEnglish
URL

A Mika Review: Loveblood by M.J. O’Shea

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Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5

A Harmony Ink Press Young Adult Title

Loveblood coverMax Appleton and his mother Celia are on the run, hiding from an abusive father and husband who’s also a notoriously bad pack leader. When Max hit puberty and it became obvious he’d never make an alpha wolf, his father turned the brunt of his anger toward his inferior son and his beta wolf wife for producing him. Max and Celia find sanctuary in a garden cottage at Holly Court, the sprawling estate where Celia’s oldest friend lives with her pack alpha husband, three daughters, and teenaged son Jonah.

Jonah Spellman has what seems like the perfect life. His family is close, his dad is respected by their whole pack, and he’s been groomed to take over for as long as he can remember. Everything is set, his whole life planned, and Jonah works hard to be exactly what everyone expects. He’s under enough pressure without a runaway from a bad pack complicating his life. 

When two teenaged werewolves from very different worlds meet one snowy January day, both of their worlds get turned inside out. From the moment they meet, nothing will be the same for Jonah or Max ever again.

I’m usually selective when it comes to reading YA books. They tend to be a little “young” for me.  I gave this one a chance based on it being a paranormal book. It wasn’t the best or the worst really. I think it was relatively sweet, maybe too much. I did like the paranormal aspect. I liked the heat and rut themes as well. I would really have enjoyed it if it would have been an mpreg book. I do think it was instant love, and I was fairly okay with that. I did find myself rolling my eyes a lot, but I tend to do those during YA books.

Max was definitely a fierce little wolf. His mother decided to move them down to Portland after years of abuse. They end up at Celia’s best friend from her home pack estate. Instantly there’s a connection between Max and Jonah. Jonah who is the son and future alpha of Holly Court’s pack. In the beginning Jonah seems like a nerd or a closed off kid. Well that changes quickly with the introduction of his future mate.

It was cute, all the cuddling, and closeness so quickly. Max and Jonah relationship started quickly. Max was so enthralled with Jonah that he forgot about school starting. He forgot about other people, a new school and everything else. Jonah was so wrapped up in Max he forgot about Zoe. His girlfriend, future mate who he was blood-bonded with since childhood. It wouldn’t be High School without bullies, frenemies, chosen sides, and unrequited love typical YA books.

There is a ton of jealously, lust, betrayal, fondling, and a plethora of more emotions. I did think that it was too “pat” of Jonah’s parents to be against Jonah being bonded to him because of pack disorder. Of course we had to have the fall out of Max and his mother’s urgent departure from their home pack. They brought the cliché destruction.

In the end I do feel like for a YA book it was good. It was rather fairy tale-ish because of the love surrounding Jonah and Max. Certain things were left unsaid for me. I can say if YA isn’t your thing then bypass this. I’m on the fence with YA generally but I did enjoy it. I liked the acceptance of certain things between the main characters. I liked that it wasn’t your typical YA High School bullying, I do think it was nice to see the parents have a huge impact on the boys. Would I recommend this? Certainly to YA audiences, people that like the cuteness theme level. It was fluffy, I did enjoy it though

Cover Art by M.J. O’Shea. I actually liked the cover based on it being about wolf shifters and running through the forest.

Sales Link:   Dreamspinner Press eBook & Paperback         All Romance eBook      amazon               buy it here

Book Details:
eBook, 256 pages
Published August 7th, 2014 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN: 9781632162427
Edition Language: English

An Aurora YA Review: Carnival-Decatur by Zoe Lynne

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Rating: I give this book 4 out of 5

A Harmony Ink Press Young Adult Title

Carnival Decatur coverIn a world of lights, music, fanfare and fun, there’s not a lot left to the mundane, and nothing can be truer for four special boys whose lives intertwine in a most unusual, unexpected way. They all have secrets and supernatural powers that set them apart from the average small town high-schooler.

Jessie’s world revolves around his family’s traveling carnival. Tate’s busy being the good son to Decatur, Alabama’s first black mayor. Rand knows everyone’s secrets. And Donny wants a family. When sexuality and special abilities become each boy’s focus, a whole new realm of possibilities opens up. With an uncertain road ahead of them, their talents to see the future, hear other people’s thoughts, and manipulate wills might help them change their destined courses and find the right path.

Four boys. Each with his own cross to bear. Just trying to grow up.

Carnival – Decatur is about four boys with abilities that are certainly outside of the norm, who have to deal with their own personal problems and ambitions as well as some things that are much less mundane. The book takes place in Decatur, Alabama, and centers around the Macon Brothers’ Carnival coming into the small town, and Jesse, whose father works in the carnival business and drags his son along from place to place, not something Jesse is entirely fond of.

This book was definitely strong, and I really enjoyed the balance between characters wanting basic things that everyone wants, but also having these special abilities that they had to focus on. I thought every single one of the four boys were strong and the differences between them and what they wanted really helped communicate that. There was strong world building, even for a modern fantasy, and I really found it an interesting book to read. Each of the characters also had realistic flaws, and I have to say that I absolutely loved the fact that there was a main character of color!

Often having LGBTQIA+ representation in books causes other diversity to fall by the wayside and I love seeing books where so many different people are represented, and represented so well. I really enjoyed the plot behind the book, too, although it definitely seemed like a more character driven story than anything else. Which was great, because I think the characters were really well written. There were times with each of them when I loved them, and times when I definitely didn’t, but I enjoyed their stories and was definitely invested in what happened to all four of the boys.

Cover Artist: Allison Cassatta.  I liked the cover of this book. My personal preference is drawn covers rather than photo manipulated, but it represented the book well and I think it would draw a reader’s attention if they were in a book store or browsing online.

Sales Links:  Dreamspinner eBook & Paperback      All Romance eBook      amazon   Carnival-Decatur

Book Details:

ebook, 202 pages
Published August 29th 2014 by Harmony Ink Press (first published August 28th 2014)
ISBN 1632162458 (ISBN13: 9781632162458)
edition languageEnglish
urlhttp://www.dreamspinnerpress.com

An Aurora YA Review: The Key of Behliseth by Lou Hoffmann

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Rating:  4 out of 5 stars

Key of Behliseth“On his way to meet a fate he’d rather avoid, homeless gay teen Lucky steps through a wizard’s door and is caught up in a whirlwind quest and an ancient war. He tries to convince himself that his involvement with sword fights, magic, and interworld travel is a fluke, and that ice-breathing dragons and fire-breathing eagles don’t really exist. But with each passing hour, he remembers more about who he is and where he’s from, and with help, he begins to claim his power.

Lucky might someday rule a nation, but before he can do that, he must remember his true name, accept his destiny, and master his extraordinary abilities. Only then can he help to banish the evil that has invaded earth and find his way home—through a gateway to another world.” – blurb

The Key of Behliseth is a book about a seemingly ordinary – although wholly unfortunate – fifteen year old boy named Lucky with a past that brings a great deal of complications into his life.

I really enjoyed this book, and I would love to read it again. I’d recommend it to anyone who loves high-fantasy or young adult books. The book is grounded enough in modern life that it can appeal to people who aren’t necessarily avid fantasy readers, but it also has enough fantasy elements and an engaging enough plot that fantasy readers will almost certainly enjoy it, too. The main character, Lucky, is a very realistic hero. When he’s thrown into things that, to him, don’t make much sense, he doesn’t just immediately understand. He’s confused and has questions and is a very realistically flawed character. The story overall is also very interesting. The plot is complex, but represented in such a way that it’s easy and fun for a reader to understand.

One thing that tended to pull me out of the story in the first few chapters was the way Lucky spoke versus the way the narration was phrased. They seemed to be on two different levels. The narration was just phrased more the way an old fantasy book would be, where Lucky was in modern times and spoke with a more contemporary feel. As the story progressed, I got used to it, and it didn’t distract from the story so much that I didn’t enjoy the book.
Cover Artist: Catt Ford – The cover art for this book is beautiful. The blues and golds and blacks really make it appealing to the eye even before a person looks more closely at what the pictures on the cover are. It’s very indicative of what the book will be about and I think it’s a very well done cover, and well suited to the book.

Sales Links:  Harmony Ink Press      All Romance eBook         amazon        Key to Behliseth

Book Details:

ebook, 2nd , 296 pages
Published September 11th 2014 by Harmony Ink Press (first published November 2010)
NOTE: This is a previously published work. The title, author, and/or publisher may have changed.
A Harmony Ink Press Young Adult Title 2nd Edition
original titleBeyond the Wizard’s Threshold
ISBN 1632162482 (ISBN13: 9781632162489)

 

A Sammy Review: Ben Raphael’s All-Star Virgins by K.Z. Snow

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Rating: 4 out of 5 stars.

Pride that depends on the approval of others is a false pride, layered on from outside yourself like gold leaf. When the leaf begins to flake and chip, you see the base material beneath it. When you see the base material, the shiny deception exists no more. What are you left with?

Soul-crushing disillusionment. A sorrow that seems absolute.

All Star Virgins coverThere’s something about youth that is so wonderful and yet so sad. This is displayed perfectly in the story of five young boys who attend Ben Raphael Academy, a boarding school, together. They’re more than friends, they’re family, but in the midst of a chaotic world filled with typical teenage drama, they’re virtually invisible.

When one of them comes up with a plan to change that, to make them become noticed and to highlight their “mystique” as virgins who aren’t trying to chase tail, a rare breed among boys their age, the rest go along. What starts out as a simple act to try and make a quiet, forgotten group noticed and desired winds its way into a far darker journey of discovery, loss, and love.

I forced myself to look at the sky. The stars wheeled thickly overhead. This night, they seemed like a gateway to infinite possibilities, not a glittering veil over a dark, suctioning void.

I went into this thinking it was going to be a fun, cute Young Adult story. I’m not typically one for that genre, but this sounded interesting.

Well, I can say for certain that cute and light were not quite what I got out of this. It speaks volumes about the thought process of youth and how they seek to be seen, but more than that seek acceptance. It was all a very sad reality to me. And while there is an element of romance in this between Rider and Jake, I feel the heart of the story lies more in the group of boys themselves.

Reading the blurb again, I think it sounds a bit cheesy toward the end in regards to an unspeakable tragedy, and when I read what this tragedy was, it may have at first seemed over-dramatic and far-fetched, but the more I thought about it, the more realistic it actually was – and that thought made me incredibly sad.

*POTENTIAL SPOILER REGARDING POSSIBLY TRIGGERING TOPIC: I was also surprised at the heaviness of a certain topic in this. I will say that if anyone has a hard boundary line when it comes to relationships between minors and adults of the more manipulative nature, you should steer clear of this. For some reason, I didn’t expect it to happen. Granted, this isn’t a long book, but it still surprised me when the initial idea was hinted at and then fleshed out.

I do think that the tragedy aspect of it, as well as the taboo relationship part, would’ve been more impactful in a book of novel length. With this being 134 pages, everything was quick, and the brief glimpses we got of this issues being dug into were quite nice, but just not enough given the weight of them.

In general a good story, but certainly not something I’d suggest if you want a quick, light read. Quick, yes, but light, not so much.And although I’m not an expert regarding the classification of a young adult story, this does depict teenage boys going through life. While there are several references to sexual activities, and times when we see what leads up to it and the aftermath, there are no explicit sexual details. As such, I’d say it does fall pretty well into the Young Adult category.

Cover Artist: Maria Fanning provided a simple cover that at first seems quite basic in regards to the type of story. Boys in a boarding school – thus a boy with a uniform on the cover. Yet, when you get into the story, the backdrop of the cover comes to have a great meaning, and really highlight a beautiful element of the story.

Sales Links:  Harmony Ink eBook        All Romance (ARe)          Amazon            Ben Raphael’s All Star Virgins

Book Details:

ebook, 134 pages
Published September 25th 2014 by Harmony Ink Press
ISBN139781632162571
other editions
None found

Cover Reveal for Unicorns and Rainbow Poop by Sam Kadence (contest)

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Need a little wonder in your life?  Check out the new cover for  Sam Kadence’s Unicorns and Rainbow Poop!  There is an excerpt to read and a contest to enter! Now on to  our cover reveal…

Book Name: Unicorns and Rainbow Poop
Author Name: Sam Kadence

Author Bio:

Sam Kadence has always dreamed about being someone else, somewhere else. With very little musical talent, Sam decided the only way to make those dreams come true was to try everything from cosplay at the local anime conventions to writing novels about pretending to run away to become a musician.

Sam has a Bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing, sells textbooks for a living, enjoys taking photographs of Asian Ball Joint Dolls to tell more stories, and has eclectic taste in music from J-pop to rock and country. All of which finds its way into the books eventually.

Author Contact:

https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100008292783586&fref=ts&ref=br_tf
https://www.facebook.com/SamKadence
@parisbvamp

10722326_10204675409863614_1859204750_oPublisher: Harmony Ink Press
Cover Artist:  Aaron Anderson
Sales Links for Dreamspinner Press:  eBook    Paperback

Unicorns and Rainbow Poop Blurb:

Ex-boyband member Dane Karlson is struggling to overcome an eating disorder and a body dismorphic disorder. His fall through a glass table puts him in rehab and on the road to recovery. Then a friend dies. When depression causes him to lose ground, he calls for the only person he trusts–former bandmate Tommy. But Tommy doesn’t know how to help. He begs his friend Sebastian “Bas” Axelrod to aid them through the emotional struggle.

Bas, an openly gay high school student who’s recently lost his grandmother, is trying to survive his last few months of school before escaping to Stanford. Having just lost the only person in his family to care for him, he is victim to the cruelty of the others. His younger brother bullies him, and his parents are suing him for his gran’s inheritance. When Tommy calls, Bas can’t help but run to his side.

Together Dane and Bas find a middle ground, supporting each other through the lows, dancing together during the highs. They build friendships and plan for the prom and graduation, thinking positively as long as they are together.

Categories: YA, Contemporary, m/m

Unicorns and Rainbow Poop Excerpt:

“So I was thinking since you and I both care about Tommy, we have something in common. See, Tommy is stressed, and I thought we could do something nice for him.”

Dane sat but glared at the man suspiciously. “What sort of nice thing?”

Bas motioned to the bags. “We’re going to make him cookies.”

Dane gulped. “I don’t like food.”

“You won’t be eating it. Tommy will. He canceled a class to come here. Did he tell you? He was taking a theater class at the community college back in Minnesota. Had to withdraw to be here. And with college, you know that means giving up any money paid. Not that money matters much to you guys. Though as young as you all are, I hope you’re well invested.”

Bas shrugged at him and began taking things out of the bags. Flour, eggs, sugar—both white and brown—food coloring, butter, vanilla, and lemons.

“I didn’t know,” Dane said quietly. He’d thought Tommy would be the least affected by his problems. Of course he’d been wrong about that too. Couldn’t he do anything right? “I don’t know anything about cooking.”

“That’s okay. I got this recipe online. It’s pretty easy. We’re making unicorn poop cookies.”

“What?”

“They are sugar cookies with food coloring in them to make them all rainbow-like. Unicorns are good luck and all that. Supposed to be the embodiment of goodness and purity.” Bas picked up his tablet, tapped the screen, and flipped it so Dane could see. The cookies really did look like a big pile of rainbow poop.

“Looks tasty,” Dane grumbled.

“We shall see, right? Think you can measure for me?” He pulled out a couple of cookie sheets and turned on one of the many ovens. “I got permission to use the kitchen here, but we can’t get too rowdy or they’ll kick me out.” He winked at Dane. “I’m pretty sure the orderlies outside are to make sure I’m not burning the place down.”

Dane got up and moved around the counter to stare at the list of ingredients. Bas plugged in a big mixer and took the mixing bowl out of it, bringing it to the counter for them to fill.

“This is really for Tommy?”

“Sure. We can send some to Ru and Adam too if you’d like. I heard they are only an hour or so away.”

“I don’t want Ru to know I’m here,” Dane said immediately. He didn’t need to mess up anyone else’s life.

“No worries. We need tell them nothing other than that they are from you.”

RainbowBadgeTour Dates: October 6, 2014

Tour Stops: Parker Williams, Andrew Q. Gordon, Amanda C. Stone, Book Reviews, Rants, and Raves, BFD Book Blog, My Fiction Nook, The Hat Party, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Foxylutely Book Reviews, MM Good Book Reviews, Cathy Brockman Romances, Fallen Angel Reviews, Rebecca Cohen Writes, The Blogger Girls, Cate Ashwood, A_TiffyFit’s Reading Corner, Elisa – My Reviews and Ramblings, Boy Meets Boy Reviews, Smoocher’s Voice, Will Parkinson, Love Bytes, Multitasking Mommas, Twinsie Talk, Iyana Jenna

Contest: Rafflecopter Prize: $20 Amazon Gift Card. Must be 18 years of age or older to enter. Use the Rafflecopter link provided to enter and for all additional contest details.

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On Tour with Lou Hoffmann and the Key to Behliseth, first in the Sunchild Chronicles (contest)

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Check in with Lou Hoffmann today.  Lou is here with an excerpt from the first in her new Sunchild Chronicles, Key of Behliseth.  Along with an excerpt, there is a contest to enter.  Use the Rafflecopter link below for the entry form and for additional contest details. You do not have to be 18 to enter.  This is a YA novel from Harmony Ink!  Check it out now!

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Book Name: Key of Behliseth
Author Name: Lou Hoffmann

Author Bio:

Lou Hoffmann, a mother and grandmother now, has carried on her love affair with books for more than half a century, and she hasn’t even made a dent in the list of books she’d love to read—partly because the list keeps growing as more and more fascinating tales are told in written form. She reads factual things—books about physics and stars and fractal chaos, but when she wants truth, she looks for it in quality fiction. Through all that time she’s written stories of her own, but she’s come to be a published author only as a johnnie-come-lately. Lou loves other kinds of beauty as well, including music and silence, laughter and tears, youth and age, sunshine and storms, forests and fields, rivers and seas. Proud to be a bisexual woman, she’s seen the world change and change back and change more in dozens of ways, and she has great hope for the freedom to love in the world the youth of today will create in the future.

Author Contact:  Facebook      twitter @Lou_Hoffmann.

Title: Key of Behliseth by Lou Hoffmann
Cover Artist: Catt Ford
Publisher: Harmony Ink Press (Dreamspinner Press imprint)

Sales Links:   Dreamspinner  eBook     Dreamspinner Paperback  

Key of Behliseth

Key of Behliseth Blurb:

On his way to meet a fate he’d rather avoid, homeless gay teen Lucky steps through a wizard’s door and is caught up in a whirlwind quest and an ancient war. He tries to convince himself that his involvement with sword fights, magic, and interworld travel is a fluke, and that ice-breathing dragons and fire-breathing eagles don’t really exist. But with each passing hour, he remembers more about who he is and where he’s from, and with help, he begins to claim his power.

Lucky might someday rule a nation, but before he can do that, he must remember his true name, accept his destiny, and master his extraordinary abilities. Only then can he help to banish the evil that has invaded earth and find his way home—through a gateway to another world.

 Exclusive Key of Behliseth Excerpt:

The Witch-Mortaine’s tower rose from that boulder-strewn plain, rooted between high ridges and veiled in spells.

At this hour, the entire crater lay in shadow, but even in the half-light and with only one eye, Hench’s vision was sharp. He could see cars sliding along the city’s roads, trailing columns of red and white like snakes of light. He imagined the people piloting them, tired Earthborns who wished they’d already arrived wherever they were going.

He wondered about their lives. Did they have any kind of magic? Had they ever had it? Had any of them possessed magic and love and a good life and lost it all? He wondered whether their cars would pile up in a panicked crash if they but once saw through the magical veils and glimpsed the deadly crystal beauty of the spire from which he gazed.

He worked his shoulders into a painful shrug, wishing he could rid himself of the black shadow that weighed them down, a shadow he himself had created out of anger and hate. He shook his head in persistent disbelief that it had overtaken him so easily, so fast.

He’d committed himself to vengeance, and the shadow had been born, a larval vampire that fed on his spirit, consumed his strength and joy. It grew stronger with every cruel choice and every time he lashed out, burning with rage. It fouled his every step, turned even his best intentions to evil end, drained him of substance as surely as if it had torn his heart and bled him dry. The remains had become a joke, fool to a fiendish witch, tool in the hands of the person he most hated.

He leaned against the rail, half wishing the steel would vanish and let him go. The wind thrummed against the glass and steel of the spire, but he ignored it. Whatever shame Earth’s night winds might hiss into his ear, they couldn’t carry the single word he should not have forgotten. Only the Gods’ Breath knew that name, and he had little hope ever to stand again in that sweet dawn wind of the Ethran Sunlands.


Tour Dates/Stops:

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9/11: Velvet Panic
9/12: Amanda C. Stone
9/15: MM Good Book Reviews
9/16: Prism Book Alliance
9/17: Hearts on Fire
9/18: Love Bytes
9/19: Trisha Harrington’s Blog
9/22: Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words
9/23: Parker Williams
9/24: Iyana Jenna
9/25: The Novel Approach, Dawn’s Reading Nook

Rafflecopter Code: a Rafflecopter giveaway

Rafflecopter Prize: E-book of Key of Behliseth