Tour: Curved Horizon by Taylor Brooke (excerpt and giveaway)

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Title: Curved Horizon

Series: The Camellia Clock Cycle, Book Two

Publisher: Interlude Press

Release Date (Print & Ebook): March 8, 2018

Subgenre:

Romance: LGBT, Contemporary, Science Fiction

Content Warnings: Interlude Press posts content warnings for new books on its web site at interludepress.com/content-warnings

Order now:

Interlude Press: https://store.interludepress.com/collections/curved-horizon-by-taylor-brooke

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2EoGBWw

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/curved-horizon/id1324716366?mt=11

B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/curved-horizon-taylor-brooke/1127627874?ean=2940154649688

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/767407

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/at/en/ebook/curved-horizon

Book Depository: https://www.bookdepository.com/Curved-Horizon-Taylor-Brooke/9781945053542/?a_aid=InterludePress

Book blurb:

Curved Horizon picks up a few weeks after the conclusion of Fortitude Smashed with Daisy Yuen and Chelsea Cavanaugh, whose Camellia Clocks are drawing close to timing out. Navigating the ins-and-outs of love is hard enough as strangers destined to be soul mates and proves even more complicated when Daisy shares dark, ugly secrets that linger in her and Aiden’s pasts.

Meanwhile, Shannon and Aiden continue to explore their own, new relationship. Fall brings them an unforgettable one-year anniversary, but when Shannon suffers a life-threatening accident on the job, Chelsea, Daisy, and Aiden must find a way to let go of the past to make room for their future.

Dive deeper into the world of the Camellia Clock—a world of soulmates, secrets, and the healing power of love.

Exclusive Excerpt :

Three hundred sixty-five days.

It’d been one year: one autumn, one winter, one spring, and one summer. It’d crept in on him in his sleep, stirring Shannon into bolting from his dreams. He sprang up, gripped his knees, and inhaled a shaky breath. It’d been one entire year.

How they both allowed it to slip by without paying any attention was marginally embarrassing, but Shannon wasn’t thinking about that. He dismissed the thoughts spinning in the back of his mind and focused on everything that was right in front of him.

“What’s wrong?” Aiden said, suddenly alert. He reached for Shannon’s wrist and curled his fingers around it. “Bad dream?”

Shannon coughed over a laugh and pawed at his eyes, shaking his head leisurely from side to side. “What’s the date?”

“What?” Aiden spat. He groaned and curled into Shannon’s side, nudging his forehead against the edge of Shannon’s shoulder. “It’s two in the morning; go to sleep.”

“It’s October second. We missed our own anniversary.”Shannon looked at Aiden and found Aiden looking back. “Put your eyebrows down, I’m serious,” Shannon added.
Aiden’s brows dropped, and he lifted onto his elbows, measuring

Shannon with calculating, sharp eyes. On most occasions his inability to sleep made Aiden into one of two things. One, he was a corpse. There was no waking him when he had finally fallen asleep, and if he was awakened, he was only half-alive. Two, he was this, awake as if he’d never been asleep, awake as a shark or a hungry nightmare, awake as an addict. Shannon saw his cheek cave in, sucked between Aiden’s back teeth.

“Yeah,” Shannon said. His accent made everything sound sweeter. “What’re you thinking about?”

“I never considered tonight our anniversary,” Aiden said. Shannon tilted his head and waited. Aiden obviously wasn’t finished talking, but he paused, giving

Shannon a moment to absorb his statement. It wasn’t until it’d been said twice that Shannon realized how odd it was. Anniversary. It had always been a stupid, juvenile thing to him. Anniversaries were for movies and flowers and dinner at a restaurant with candles on the tables. The only anniversaries he’d ever celebrated were with Chelsea. They went to the fanciest Italian place in Milford, which wasn’t very fancy at all, and after dessert pretended they knew what they were doing in the bed of Shannon’s truck for a whole twenty minutes.

This, he realized, was a first of firsts. “Get your keys,” Aiden said. Shannon wasn’t sure what the silence between I never considered tonight our anniversary and get your keys meant, but he imagined it meant something. He didn’t bother trying to figure out what Aiden was getting at or arguing with him, so he asked, “Where are we going?”

“Wherever you want,” Aiden said.

They dressed quickly and clumsily, bouncing off each other as they tugged on their shoes. Aiden pulled on a black beanie and Shannon ran his hands through his hair, attempting to tame it. Shannon was awake, but the world turned slowly enough to be dreamlike. He handed Aiden the keys, slumped into the passenger seat, and ignored his seatbelt. The twilight sensation of being awake and asleep at the same time was something Shannon rarely experienced, but as he watched Aiden from his side of the Jeep Cherokee, he found himself wondering if this was the kind of universe Aiden wandered in: being awake but not fully and asleep but not fully, stepping halfway out of a dream.

Aiden glanced over. “Where to?”

“You choose.”

“Turn on music,” Aiden said, and Shannon did.

Laguna Beach passed by in intervals of palm trees, dark buildings, darker streets, and the darkest ocean. Shannon noticed how alive everything was at night with the wind snapping at the windshield and fog clinging to the shoreline. He’d almost forgot what the dark was like when he was a part of it rather than an outsider trying to look in.

About the author:

After fleshing out a multitude of fantastical creatures as a special effects makeup artist, Taylor Brooke turned her imagination back to her true love—books. When she’s not nestled in a blanket typing away on her laptop, she’s traveling, hiking or reading. She writes Queer books for teens and adults. She is the author of Fortitude Smashed (Interlude Press ’17) and is represented by Saba Sulaiman at Talcott Notch Literary Services. 

Connect with Taylor Brooke: Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Author Website

Giveaway:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Direct Giveaway Link:

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/share-code/ZmJiNzg2ZGU1OGZjNTQ3N2M3NjcwYmIxZjU5YmI1OjEwMg==/?

Authors, Blogs, and Relationships. This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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Authors, Blogs, and Relationships.

Given recent upsetting events concerning author Santino Hassell and other things that have occurred within the last six month, I’ve been thinking a lot about author/blog relationships.   Through this author’s campaign of lies, harassment and distortions, he was able to convince Riptide Publishing that a well-known, well-established blogger with a terrific reputation was “engaged in a campaign to doxx, harass, and smear him” to the point that they removed her and her blog from their tours and ARC lists as well as Twitter feeds, impacting her hugely.  Now this author also has or had a number of well known author friends and was also at the “stable” at Dreamspinner [see Dreamspinner Press note below] so I imagine he was working on them to get them to block this blogger as well.  I’m not sure we will ever know how far it got.

But the impact on her reputation from his deceit, however temporary, can’t be denied.  And no I’m certainly not forgetting the legends of people out there that this man has hurt by his long time deceitful behavior, catfishing, and pretense of being a cancer patient.

Today, I want to talk about author/blog relationships because they can get to be a little incentuous, a little weird, simply by the nature of the beast.  You see all bloggers/reviewers, well, we are readers first.  Then we write our first review because we want to share our thoughts on the books we are reading, then comes another review, and another.  Maybe we read a blog or decide to start one as a journal, who knows but all of a sudden you’re a blogger and a reviewer.  Then little by little you make the conscious decision to grow the blog and add more reviewers and voila!  Six years and 12 reviewers later (not all the same ones mind) Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is still rolling along.

Because we are readers who love our books and yes, authors, we like to attend conventions where we meet and connect with the authors and publishers.  You do this enough times and it can go from friendly acquaintances to downright friends, knitting buds, people you write to.   I’m sure you can see where this is going.You have a relationship with these authors.Does it make it hard to remain objective for reviews?  It would if I was the only one reviewing books here.  Thank the goddess I’m not.  There are actually 12 of us here so that makes it easier although not always true as we do have our favorite authors and always will.   But we would have those simply as readers.  And I don’t see the issue with that as long as it doesn’t carry over into how it affects our treatment of those authors on the blog.

I would like to think that we as bloggers can use  our blogs to help promote those writers who are trying to find a “platform” for their first stories as self published authors or just authors with stories period, have a place to “talk” to readers about their writing and their new releases,  and that we, in turn, are respectful of their efforts while being honest in our reviews and opinions.  After all, readers are also depending upon us to let them know if a finished story is a quality novel in every way!  It’s not just the plot, and the characters.  No, it’s also the world building and the editing.    Yes, a great editor will always be needed, an author simply cannot self edit…it never works out well.  Editors are gods no matter how much you may hate them.  Throw gold at them now.

We recently had an author tell us not to review her books any more.  Now this is an author that we had just put in our top ten of 2017, had been one of our Top Author Discoveries of 2017 and, out of the blue, wrote us a letter, demanding we not review her latest SciFy story because a reviewer (she wouldn’t name) was writing things about other authors books she didn’t like (wouldn’t say what).  Wasn’t even sure that reviewer even wrote for us since she wouldn’t name them.  I wrote back offering to open up the  conversation and keep the dialog going.  Did we hear from this author? No.  Did we review the book?  Yes.  Guess what?  It was very good.  4 stars.  We review the book,dear readers, not in this case the nuttiness that went on  around it.  And FYI?  No one tells us what books we can or can’t review.  One case in point of the strangeness that can go on in an author’s mind that she thought she  had the authority to tell us not to review a story.  Huh.

Sigh.

If you had asked me, this was an author I thought I had a  relationship with.  Guess not.  But her questionable judgement against us put our reputation into question without even asking for particulars   And her publisher is one that we’ve just started working with.  Now I need to contact them and gingerly open up a conversation I’m not sure I know how to start.

On the flip side, I’ve had great relationships with authors who send me their pre-release pre-final edits ARCs, trusting me not to share their stories (which I never have).    It’s a tightrope of trust and expectations that develops between blogger and author.  When it works, it’s mutually  beneficial to all, including our readers.  When it breaks down, as it did in the Santino Hassell case, it went wrong in a spectacularly bad fashion, hurting this blogger to the point it could have ruined her out of the blog she’s so lovingly created.

Have I come to any conclusions?  Not really.  I don’t attend any conventions anymore.  Mostly because of RL obligations and the costs.  My contacts with everyone are through emails, FB, and Twitter, not that it matters as to the “closeness” you feel to someone.  I would like to think that Santino Hassell is an abnormality, the author who has been uncovered while managing once more to hurt the LGBT community…again.

My heart goes out to all his victims.

If any one of our readers want to share your thoughts on this topic, I’d love to hear them…..what a disheartening couple of days it’s  been, shattering for those who believed in him, vindicating for those who have been trying to get so many to hear them for so long.

As to the author/blogger relationship?  Well, I’m not sure that’s going to change either.  It’s an odd duck as my grandmother would say.  One that needs respect on both sides to work.  And maybe a few boundaries….

 

{Note:  On March 9 Dreamspinner Press tweeted that Dreamspinner Press is no longer selling Santino Hassell titles. And that removing titles on third party retailers will take time.

He is no longer listed on their website.]

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, March 11:

  • Authors, Blogs, and Relationships.
  • This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Monday, March 12:

  • Tour:Curved Horizon by Taylor Brooke e
  • DSP Promo Ari McKay
  • RIPTIDE TOUR and Giveaway: New Heights by Quinn Anderson
  • A Lila Review :Winter Cowboy by RJ Scott
  • A MelanieM Review Explore with Me by Kris Jacen
  •  An Alisa Review Special Delivery by Deirdre O’Dare

Tuesday, March  13:

  • COVER REVEAL Ari McKay ‘s Like The Night
  • DSP Promo Andrew Grey
  • RELEASE DAY BLITZ EXPOSED ANTHOLOGY (a novel taken promo)
  • Release Day Blitz Heartbeats by Jenna Kendrick
  • A Free Dreamer: Review: The Seeds of Dissolution (Dissolution Cycle #1) by William C. Tracy
  • A Lila Release Day Review:Twisted and Tied (Marshals #4) by Mary Calmes
  • An Alisa Release Day Review: Running to You by Andrew Grey

Wednesday, March 14:

  • BLITZ Teacher’s Pet by Multiple Authors
  • Review Tour Silvia Violet – Of Hope and Anguish
  • Series Review Tour for Infinity #1 and #2 by C J Lynne
  • A Lila Review:  Undercover Star by Jackie Keswick
  • A Lila Review : Of Hope and Anguish by Silvia Violet
  • A Melanie Review: Family Matters (Brandywine Investigations #4-5) by Angel Martinez

Thursday, March 15:

  • Release Blitz – Lynn Michaels – Out Of The Ocean
  • Release Blitz: Would It Be Okay To Love You Box Set by Amy Tasukada
  • Riptide Publishing Tour and Giveaway: Wheels and Heels by Jaime Samms
  • The Ballerino and The Biker by Rebecca James Release Day Blitz
  • A MelanieM Review: Promise Me We’ll Be Okay by Nell Iris
  • A Stella PreRelease Review: Cutie Pies by Barbara Bell
  • An Alisa Review: Valentine’s Day Dreaming (A Touch of Love #9) by Pelaam

Friday, March 16:

  • Book Blast PRIDE OF LOVE by Kevin Dwyer
  • Book Blast – David – Beginnings by B. J. Smyth
  • BOOK TOUR Off-Campus Setup by Maria Vickers
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Ever After by Riley Hart & Christina Lee
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: ​American Road Trip by Sarah Black
  • A MelanieM Review: Sound of Silence by Mia Kerick and Raine O’Tierney

Saturday, March 17:

  • A MelanieM Review: Squared Away (Out of Uniform #5) by Annabeth Albert
  • In the Spotlight: AE Via on her new release Promises Part 4
  • Release Blitz – T.A. Creech – Dusk (Expedition 63: Book One)

The Time is Right for Gay Superheroes. This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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The Time is Right for Gay Superheroes

Does Black Panther’s Success

Open the Door for a Queer Superhero?

Black Panther
Hollywood is celebrating the remarkable breakthrough box office performance of Marvel’s Black Panther, the first entry in the popular Marvel Cinematic Universe to feature a black leading character, and indeed, a mostly-black cast. Part of the shock and awe felt within the industry when it comes to Black Panther comes from the history of black superheroes in films: There just aren’t very many, …
Read more

Clearly, others were thinking along the same lines.  My friend and author J. Scott Coatsworth posted this story at his terrific site QueerSciFi (David Reddish – Full Story at LGBTQ Nation)   

From your recommendations, finds and links,  yes, there are gay superheroes out there in many forms and formats, yet few have made it through to the mainstream media yet as did Black Panther this year.  The Pride, the picture at the top of the page is from The Pride comic by Joe Glass.  It’s a small press comic series based in based in Treorchy, Wales.  Started in 2011, the first 8 page story formed about a superhero team consisting of FabMan, Angel, Bear, Frost, Sapphire, Twink, White Trash, Wolf and Cub.  I’ll let you guess who is who. Published sporadically through the years, it’s returning this year with Issue five of The Pride Adventures.  Look for more information here.

Just as Black Panther , and the call  #WakandaForever has become an affirmation of self, the beginning of a movement.  Of joy, of recognition, of belief, of strength.  If one movie…one comic has had, and continues to have the power to do all that for people of color.  What would gay comic heroes be able to do for the LGBT nation?

Clearly, we need our gay superheroes just as badly as Black Panther and Wakanda is needed and is now being treasured and loved  everywhere. Netflix series Jessica Jones comes to mind, but that’s hardly mainstream, although I love it so.  Where will it come from and when?  I have no idea but with Black Panther I hope I’m seeing a sea change, one that’s already brought us Wonder Woman and now will bring us a  LGBT superhero where we can see a representation like no other before…#LGBTsuperhero #PrideForever.

LGBT Superhero Giveaway

Further Recommendations from our Readers and Winner Announcement:

HB:

don’t think I’ve read many stories with actual superheroes (the ones with super powers and a suit) would be:
Love for the Cold-Blooded Or: The Part-Time Evil Minion’s Guide to Accidentally Dating a Superhero by Alex Gabriel.

Purple Reader:

Thanks for the links and other recs, especially the reference to graphics. I remembered a few more, including one graphic. Most are on those links, but these are the ones I’ve read and enjoyed:
– EARTH 2, VOL 1 by James Robinson, et al – graphic, simple plot, but a visual thrill w gay Green Lantern.
– LOVESICK GODS by Amanda Meuwissen – new one, framed around greek mythology.
– THE DIVISION by C.C. Bridges – part-time superheroes (one closeted, other has a crush) team up against alien invasion.
– EDDIE & SHADOW series by Skylar Jaye – heck, why not a son of superheroes being sub to a Dom supervillain.
– and it’s been mentioned, but I liked it too – LOVE FOR THE COLD-BLOODED, OR THE PART-TIME EVIL MINION’S GUIDE TO ACCIDENTALLY DATING A SUPERHERO by Alex Gabriel – yep, that’s the title, nuf said.

Jessica:

Superheroes are some of my favorite reading. Definitely Skylar Jaye’s Eddie and its sequel Shadow. Cari Z’s Panopolis series, Where’s There’s Smoke, Where There’s Fire, and Where There’s a Will are wonderful reading. Alexis Hall has a superb short in the Winter Rain anthology, Behind the Masks. Dreamspinner had a really nice anthology, Men of Steel, that has since gone out of print sadly. In YA, Hero by Perry Moore is on my keeper shelf. Also, Superior by Jessica Lack is a novella that delighted me. Refraction by Hayden Scott is another YA that I really enjoyed.

Thank you all for some great links and recs.  You all rock as always.  This is a topic close to my heart as if you all haven’t guessed already.  A huge geek I always had stacks of comic books at home (guess who’s mother tossed them..something I’ve never recovered from), seeing the resurgence of Black Panther and its impact has brought me to tears more than once.  The thought of what a gay superhero  could do for the LGBT youth and well, all the LGBT community?  Leaves me speechless….

Happy March.  Our winners are Purple Reader and Carolyn.  Please contact Stella at scatteredthoughtsandrogueword@gmail.com and she will help to get your gift certs to you.  Congratulations.  New giveaway coming up soon!

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, March 4:

  • Cover Reveal for Lost Souls Found by Kris T. Bethke (giveaway)
  • BG Thomas on One NIght Stands, Writing and his new release  Orange (guest post)
  • The Time is Right for Gay Superheroes. This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Monday, March 5

  • DSP Promo Laura Lascarso
  • Hard To Let Go by Jaclyn Quinn Blog Tour
  • Release Blitz – Promise Me We’ll Be Okay by Nell Iris
  • A Jeri Review: The Time of My Life by Nora Phoenix
  • A MelanieM Review: A Matter of Justice (Hong Kong Nights Book 3) by J.C. Long
  • A Stella Review:  If Ever I Cease to Love You by Shawn Bailey
  • An Alisa Audiobook Review: Chief’s Mess (Anchor Point #3) by L.A. Witt and (Narrated by Nick J. Russo)

Tuesday, March 6:

  • COVER REVEAL BLITZ Invitation to The Blues (Small Change #2) by Roan
  • BLOG TOUR Unraveled by K.M. Neuhold
  • Livingston (Trenton Security #1) by J.M. Dabney Release Day Blog Tour
  • VLOG TOUR The Time of My Life by Nora Phoenix
  • A Caryn Release Day Review: When Everything is Blue by Laura Lascarso
  • A Free Dreamer Review:Finding Sanctuary (The Hampton Road Club #6) by Morticia Knight
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: Cowboy in the Crosshairs (Turquoise, New Mexico #1) by B.A. Tortuga

Wednesday, March 7:

  • BLOG TOUR – Skater Boy by A.E. Wasp
  • RELEASE BLITZ Off-Campus Setup by Maria Vickers
  • Review Tour  for Winter Cowboy (Whisper Ridge, Wyoming #1) by R.J. Scott
  • Riptide Publishing Tour and Giveaway: The Pick Up by Allison Temple
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review:Winter Cowboy (Whisper Ridge, Wyoming #1) by R.J. Scott
  • A MelanieM Review: The Calling by MD Neu
  • An Alisa Review: Switching Places By Morticia Knight

Thursday, March 8:

  • DSP Dreamspun Promo BA Tortuga
  • Harmony Promo Russell J. Sanders on Titanic Summer
  • INDIGO BLITZ Leaning Into the Fall (Audio) by Lane Hayes
  • A MelanieM Audiobook Review:  Runner by Parker Williams
  • A MelanieM Review: Hard to Let Go (Haven’s Cove #1) by Jaclyn Quinn
  • An Ali Review: Closer by F.E. Feeley Jr.

Friday, March 9:

  • INDIGO TOUR Waking Oisin by Grace Kilian Delaney
  • Release Blitz: Art by Adonis by Kris Sawyer
  • Review Tour for Annabelle Jacobs’ Bitten By The Alpha
  • A Caryn Review: Room for Recovery (Hearts and Health #4) by D.J. Jamison
  • A MelanieM Review : Bitten By The Alpha (Regent’s Park Pack #4) by Annabelle Jacobs
  • An Alisa Release Day Review: Heart of Glass (Lawyers in Love #3) by Ari McKay

Saturday, March 10:

  • A MelanieM Review Art by Adonis by KRIS SAWYER

Gay Superheroes and This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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Gay Superheroes

Last week I started off the discussion of LGBT Superheroes because of the new film Black Panther and the colossal response that’s its engendered, due in no small part to representation. Of course it helps that its an outstanding movie too. But people of color are seeing themselves represented in a major motion picture in a way that they’ve never seen before and perhaps never been possible before.  Its origin?  A comic called Black Panther.

I don’t think you can underestimate the power of seeing yourself represented…in a book, graphic or not, or on a screen, small or large.  The above section of a comic book panel belongs to a long running comic book called  Life with Archie.  Here’s the full cover:

Amazing isn’t it.  More and more of the regular comics introduced gay characters or had characters come “out of the closet” in recent years.  Anyone remember seeing this Green Lantern panel?

 

And while the “mainstream” comics have been busy, so have many Quiltbag authors for writing LGBT superhero books and graphic novels.  Yes, it turns out there is a burgeoning niche and demand here.  We want to see gay superheroes too!

Some of the ones I love?

Katey Hawthorne’s Superpowered Love series (up to eight books now)
Andrea Speed’s Infected Series (Roan) up to eight books minus the connected series
Light by Nathan Burgoine
Panopolis by Cari Z

Here are some of the wonderful Gay Superhero Recommendations from all of you:

From Jen:

Here are some that I found:
KIM & KIM https://www.comixology.com/Kim-Kim-1/digital-comic/396452
MIDNIGHTER & APOLLO https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Midnighter_and_Apollo
AMERICA CHAVEZ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miss_America_(America_Chavez)

And here’s one that I read. It is not quite traditional superheroes, but the kids do battle bad things with magic. MAGIC BOY BASIL https://magicalboybasil.com

From Purple Reader:

Oh boy, now we’re talkin’! I’ll be seeing BP this week, and now you are stoking my love of superheroes even more. I’m looking forward to see what others rec. There’s some fanfic that is decent, as well, as well as gay sidekicks (and then there’s separating out paranormal powers from superhero stories), but here are ones with gay MCs that I’ve read and enjoyed over the years:

– QUEEROES by Bereznai – light-hearted look at gay teens w/ powers. My first such story – me: “What?! There are gay superheroes?!” *faints*.
– HERO by Moore – misfit group of teen superheroes.
– MASKS series by Thorne – another team of YA superheros, still enjoyable.
– BROKEN HEROS series by Perdita – now how about some college superheroes.
– FIERCE by Rosen – or a nerdy college freshman.
– PANOPOLIS series by Cari Z – creative take that has you rooting for the villain.
– WAYNE OF GOTHAM by Hickman – Not the best, but decent for me – it’s a gay Dark Knight after all.
– KING CAGE series by Mike Stop Continues – new & offbeat; urban graffiti superhero.

Ami 

I think Roan and Holden from “INFECTED” series by Andrea Speed to be LGBTQ superheroes :). I admit I don’t follow comic. Not my cup of tea. So I don’t know much about LGBTQ superhero in comic unless they’re being turned into movie

Moondrawn

Deadpool is pansexual. His kiss in 2009 with gay superhero Rictor was the first same-sex kiss in a mainstream Marvel comic. The movie Deadpool 2 will feature a bisexual and polyamorous superhero!

 

I love this thread and our recommendations and Giveaway continues until March 3rd!

It’s our  LGBTQIA Superhero Hunt Giveaway!

Find stories and LGBTQIA Superheroes!  We will give you all the entire month that’s left.  Must be superhero stories, can be graphic novels (comics).  Giveaway ends March 3 at midnight.  Gift certificates will be given away!  Must be 18 years of age or older.  Let the hunt begin!

And the winner of our Valentine’s Day Giveaway is announced at the very end of today’s blog.  Don’t miss it!

 

LGBTQIA Superhero Lists You May Not Be Aware Of!

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

 

Sunday, February 25:

  • Perfect by Felice Stevens Release Day Blitz
  • RELEASE BLITZ for Captive Hearts (Deviant Hearts #1) by A E Ryecart LILY RECEIVED (2 emails)
  • Gay Superheroes and This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Monday, February 26:

  • Bite Me by Beth Bolden BLOG TOUR
  • Blog Post- Katze Snow – Demons & Wolves Series
  • Release Blitz – Closets Are For Clothes – Addison Albright
  • RELEASE BLITZ FORSAKEN by J.R. Gray
  • A Lila Audiobook Review: Off the Beaten Path by Cari Z. and Jack Wesley (Narrator)
  • A Stella Review: Bite Me by Beth Bolden
  • An Alisa Review: Alpha Dragon: Bronaz by Kellan Larkin and Kaz Crowley

Tuesday, February 27:

  • RIPTIDE TOUR Where Death Meets the Devil by LJ Hayward
  • Release Blitz  – Bitten By The Alpha (Regent’s Park Pack #4) by Annabelle Jacobs
  • NDIGO BLITZ A Matter of Justice by J.C. Long
  • A Free Dreamer Release Day Review: Exodus ( Heaven Corp #2) by CC Bridges
  • A MelanieM PreRelease Review: Apocalypse Alley (Blue Unicorn #2) by Don Allmon
  • An Alisa Audiobook Review: Camp H.O.W.L. by Bru Baker and Dorian Bane (Narrator)

Wednesday, February 28:

  • BLOG TOUR FORSAKEN by J.R. Gray
  • DSP Publications Promo Sean Michael
  • Release Blitz RJ Scott – Winter Cowboy
  • A MelanieM Audiobook Review:  Runner by Parker Williams and Patrick Zeller (Narrator)
  • A Stella Review :New Heights by Quinn Anderson
  • An Alisa Review: Say Cheese by Michael P. Thomas

Thursday, March 1:

  • Release Blitz – Room For Recovery – DJ Jamison
  • DSP Publications Promo Chris E. Saros
  • BLOG TOUR  Found (Hamilton’s Heroes #1) by Annabella Michaels
  • A Free Dreamer Review: Celestia by J.D Evergreen
  • An Stella Release Day Review: Touch by Remmy Duchene

Friday, March 2:

  • Review Tour – Jay Northcote – Pretty In Pink S
  • DSP GUEST POST BG Thomas
  • Hurri Cosmo – Ghost Wolf – Virtual Book Tour
  • Riptide Tour and Giveaway: Apocalypse Alley by Don Allmon
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review : Pretty In Pink by Jay Northcote
  • A MelanieM Review: Where Death Meets the Devil by LJ Hayward
  • An Alisa Release Day Review: Touch by Remmy Duchene

Saturday, March 3:

  • Ever After by Riley Hart & Christina Lee Release Day Blitz
  • Release Blitz CLOSER by F.E. Feeley Jr.

💘

Valentine’s Day Giveaway Winner is H.B.!  Congratulations, H.B.  Contact Stella at scatteredthoughtsandroguewords@gmail.com and she will arrange to get your gift card to you.

Of Covers, Valentine’s Day Books and This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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Of Covers and Valentine’s Day Books

 

 

I’m of two minds this Sunday.  Valentine’s Day which is coming up in two weeks and book covers which has been occupying my mind a lot recently.  So I’m going to burble on a bit about both today to get the gears cranking for major posts down the line.  Chime in please with your thoughts here.

First up books covers.   Lately I either absolutely love them, think the artists are whacking it right out of the cover ballpark so to speak or find them bland, bland, bland.  Not a whole lot of in between.  I’m not sure if that’s due to the huge amounts of authors now self-publishing and actually trying to do the covers themselves.  Or perhaps the limited choice in photography the cover artist can choice from when designing the cover?  All I know is that certain  artists names pop up again and again on the covers that people love and  that stand out on favorite lists.  Natasha Snow has had a great year (last year too).  I love her  covers.  Paul Richmond, Anne Cain, Reese Dante? So too Angsty G, and  Aaron Anderson. They continue to blow me away.  Posh Gosh over at Pride Publishing has done the same for years.  Garrett Leigh or GD Leigh has a style about her covers that so immediately recognizable that it jumps out at you. LC Chase?  Shakes head….amazing.

And I’m throwing this out here for discussion.  Back in 2008, Anne Cain did the cover for J.L. Langley’s My Fair Captain (Sci-Regency #1).  IMO its the gold standard for all half  naked torso covers and may indeed be the first.  Can anyone think of one before this?  To me, it still is beyond amazing and yes, utterly drool worthy.  Comments?  Here’s the cover.  And if you haven’t read the story, you should!  Just outstanding!

So many manage to combine an eye-catching design, story elements, along with a striking color combination that comes together in a cover that pulls you in and makes you want to read that book!  Now think of all the ones that  totally missed that mark.  The nondescript ones, the ones that could be for any book let alone the one you are reading, the “oh, here’s another….fill in the blank for me” image cover.  There seems to be a lot of those  to balance out the sublime.  So I’m planning on a couple of posts to talk about the state of covers these days.  How do you feel about them?  Do you have your favorite artists?  Fav covers?  What strikes your fancy when it comes to cover art?  More on that  later but start talking to me please!

Valentine’s Day Giveaway

Then it’s soon to be Valentine’s Day and I know there are book written with this in mind.  Can I think of them now?  No!  But maybe you can.  Who can remember Valentine’s Day stories?  Or maybe ones with Cupid in them?  I know there are a few of those out there.  Of course we will have a giveaway attached to that.  It’s our Cupid or Valentine’s Day Giveaway! Give us your favorite Valentine’s Day stories!  The one overflowing with romantic, love, roses, or whatever!  Giveaway is a gift card from Dreamspinner Press for $10.  Contest  ends on February 17th at midnight.

Winter Story List Challenge!   

So last week we offered up the Winter List Challenge!   We asked What’s your Most Memorable Winter Stories?  From now until the end of the month, get in your recommendations!  We will pick a winner or two to receive a gift card of $10.  Make sure you include your name and email address where you can be reached.  So bring on the Brrrrrs and the Winter Recommendations!  Contest ends January 28 at mid.

Now about those wonderful lists from our readers, here’s the recommendations we’ve received so far.  Remember you have until midnight tonight.   Winner  is Moondrawn.  Congrats!  Please contact Stella at scatteredthoughtsandroguewords@gmail.com and she will arrange to get you your gift card!

Now onto this week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words.

 

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, February 4:

  • Of Covers, Valentine’s Day Books and This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
  • Release Blitz – KA Merikan – Just Here For The Pain

Monday, February 5:

  • DSP Dreamspun Desires Promo Shira Anthony on Swann’s Revenge
  • DSP Promo R.L. Merrill on Hurricane Reese
  • La Famiglia (A Men of Gilead Novel) by Deanna Wadsworth Blog Tour
  • A Stella Review: Still The One (The Best Gift #2) by Shawn Lane
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Friends and Lovers by Tinnean
  • An Alisa Audiobook Review: The Long and Winding Road (Bear, Otter, and the Kid #4) by TJ Klune and Sean Crisden (Narrator)

Tuesday, February 6:

  • Cover Reveal –  Out Of The Ocean  by Lynn Michaels
  • DSP Promo H. M. Shepherd
  • Rob Rosen on And God Belched
  • A Caryn Release Day Review: Swann’s Revenge by Shira Anthony
  • An Ali Release Day Review: Bobby Green (Johnnies #5) by Amy Lane
  • An Alisa Review:Alpha Dragon: Taran (Treasured Ink #1) by Kaz Crowley & Kellan Larkin

Wednesday, February 7:

  • Book Blast My Horrible Gay Dating Life by Dimitrius Jones
  • DSP Dreamspun Desires Promo j. leigh bailey
  • Release Blitz: RJ Scott’s Seth & Casey
  • A Jeri Review: Going Overboard (Anchor Point #5) by L.A. Witt
  • An Ali Audiobook Review: Coach’s Challenge (Scoring Chances# 5) by Avon Gale and Scott R. Smith (Narrator)
  • An Alisa Review: Tarnished Hero by  Temple Madison

Thursday, February 8:

  • Blog tour for Resist and Triumph charity anthology by  Joe Bone, editor
  • DSP Guest Post CJane Elliott
  • Release Blitz Tour – Selina Kray – In Wild Lemon Groves
  • A Caryn Review: The Artist’s Touch (Art Medium) by E.J. Russell
  • An Alisa Review: Camp Lake Omega by Penelope Peters
  • A MelanieM Audiobook Review: ​Lost and Found by Rick R. Reed and Narrator: Michael Neeb

Friday, February 9:

  • From Ashes by K.M. Neuhold Audiobook Tour
  • Release Blitz – Sam Burns – Wolf & The Holly
  • RIPTIDE TOUR Going Overboard by LA Witt
  • Series Blitz – Katze Snow – Demons & Wolves
  • A Lila Review: The Man on the Balcony by Edward Kendrick
  • An Alisa Release Day Review: Just for Nice by H. M. Shepherd

Saturday, February 10:

  • Release Blitz – Keira Andrews – Winning Edge
  • Heart2Heart, A Charity Anthology Release Day Blitz
  • A MelanieM Review:  Rook by T. Strange

 

Goodbye January, Hello February. This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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Goodbye January, Hello February

Okay, doesn’t it seem like we were just doing this?  Can it really be February already? January just flew by and here comes, what is for us in this area, the snowiest and coldest month of the year.  For us here in the Mid Atlantic states it means the last gasp of winter usually…. our worst winter storms whether they be of ice, cold or snow.

I say that as our  outside thermometers sit around 60 degrees and have for the past several days.

But it won’t last.  It never does.  Winter isn’t over and will be back with a bang next week because that’s what February does.  It reminds us that Winter is still with us, even though we are steadily adding minutes of light to each day….something that I love.  Come on, you Spring Equinox!  Even February’s coldest winds can’t scare my glimpses of Spring away!

Winter Story List Challenge!   

So last week we offered up the Winter List Challenge!   We asked What’s your Most Memorable Winter Stories?  From now until the end of the month, get in your recommendations!  We will pick a winner or two to receive a gift card of $10.  Make sure you include your name and email address where you can be reached.  So bring on the Brrrrrs and the Winter Recommendations!  Contest ends January 28 at mid.

Now about those wonderful lists from our readers, here’s the recommendations we’ve received so far.  Remember you have until midnight tonight.   Winner or winners announced next week:

📚From Jen:

Here are some of my most memorable winter stories:
North Pole City Tales series by Charlie Cochet
The Mystery of Nevermore by C.S. Poe
Merry Christmas, Mr. Miggles by Eli Easton
Blame It on the Mistletoe by Eli Easton
A Family for Christmas by Jay Northcote
The Winter Spirit by Indra Vaughn
The Avona Tales series by Raine O’Tierney
Color of You by C.S. Poe
Third Solstice by Harper Fox

📚From Purple Reader:

It’s sometimes hard for me to recall whether even good stories were primarily set in winter, but a few do come immediately to mind. I agree with Jen about C.S. Poe’s Color of You and Nevermore. Here are two more:
Enemy Within by Tal Bauer – a thrilling conclusion to his Exec Office trilogy that travelled via sub above the Arctic Circle in Russia. And he had a number of hot couples I wouldn’t have minded snuggling up to for warmth.
Foxes by Suki Fleet – moving YA story, and she vividly captures the cold that homeless kids have to survive in.

📚From Ami:

I have sucky memories so I can only remember the latest gorgeous winter story that I read: A Frost of Cares by Amy Rae Durreson.

📚From H.B.:

I didn’t have many winter reads this year but of the ones I did read these were my most memorable:

Sometimes the Best Presents Can’t Be Wrapped by B.G. Thomas
A Very Henry Christmas by N.R. Walker
Honey and Heat by Rian Durant
Something Permanent by Roan Parrish
Merry Christmas, Mr. Miggles by Eli Easton
A Christmas Kiss by Annabelle Jacobs

📚From Moondrawn:

Some great books listed already. Winter (and Christmas) are inescapable if you read any Josh Lanyon–so many to choose from: Winter Kill, Icecapade (this one is a New Years, new chances story), So This Is Christmas, Baby It’s Cold and many more.
Minnesota Christmas series by Heidi Cullinan
Deefur Dog and then Deefur Dog and the Great Mistletoe Incident (winter weather is the heart breaker here), Love Happens Anyway, and Snow In Montana by R.J. Scott.
Mountain series by P.D. Singer (although the first one is about fire fighting, the rest are about skiing)
Something Like Winter by Jay Bell
A Reason to Believe by Diana Copland.
In The Middle Of Somewhere by Roan Parrish
Something to Believe in by Sloan Parker

 

Of course February is the month of Valentine’s Day celebrations so you know what  stories we will be asking for next…that’s right! Valentine’s Day stories  or lacking that…your most romantic story of all!  Yes!  That hearts of hearts story! That “wild thing, you make my heart sing, you make everything groovy” story!  Or whatever floats your boat!  So get those recs ready for next week and the week after!

Now onto this week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words.

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, January 28:

  •  Goodbye January, Hello February
  • This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Monday, January 29:

  •  BLITZ Ibuki by Kathryn Sommerlot
  • BLITZ Sweethearts by Gemma Gilmore
  • Review Tour – Marshall Thornton’s Hidden Treasures
  • A Stella Review: When It’s Time (Go Your Own Way #3) by Zane Riley
  • A MelanieM Review: Hidden Treasures (A Pinx Video Mystery #2) by Marshall Thornton
  • An Alisa Audiobook Review: Wet Heat by RD Hero and Nick J. Russo (Narrator)

Tuesday, January 30:

  • RIPTIDE TOUR Trick Roller by Cordelia Kingsbridge
  • DSP Guest Post Emjay Haze on Home is Where Your Are
  • An Ali Release Day Review:When the Devil Wants In by Cate Ashwood and JH Knight
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: Hurricane Reese by R.L. Merrill
  • A Lila Review: A Boyfriend for the Weekend by Caitlin Ricci

Wednesday, January 31:

  • Review Tour – Meg Harding’s Contour
  • BLITZ Dantes Unglued by Jocelynn Drake and Rinda Elliott
  • Review Tour – Garrett Leigh’s Dream (Skins #1)
  • A Stella Review:  Contour by Meg Hardin
  • An Alsa Review: Spanking the Boss by Hunter Frost
  • A Jeri Review : Dream (Skins #1) by Garrett Leigh

Thursday, February 1:

  • Color Me In by Riley Hart Release Day Blitz
  • Retro Review Tour – LA Witt’s For The Living
  • RIPTIDE TOUR and Giveaway: Scratch Track by Eli Lang
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Color Me In (Last Chance #2) by Riley Hart
  • A Jeri Review:  For The Living by L.A. Witt
  • An Alisa Review: Pushing Phillip (Common Powers #4) by Lynn Lorenz

Friday, February 2:

  • TOUR The Calling by MD Neu
  • Release Blitz – Meredith Russell’s Dead Fall
  • Release Blitz – Louise Lyons ‘ The Short Stories Collection
  • A MelanieM Review: Finders Keepers by N.R. Walker
  • A Free Dreamer Review: Light by Nathan Burgoine
  • A MelanieM Review:  All The World’s An Undead Stage (Offbeat Crimes #6) by Angel Martinez
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Spanking the Boss (An Office Kink Novella – Book #1) by Hunter Frost

Saturday, February 3:

  • A MelanieM Review:  Rook by T. Strange

 

Heartbreak, Hearthounds, And A Tale of Two Winstons. This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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Heartbreak, Heartterriers, And A Tale of Two Winstons

My heart is breaking this Sunday.  On Friday, after what was supposed to be a routine visit to the vet, for annual shots and to check out a cough, I found out that my redoubtable terrier, Winston has an aggressive tumor in the spleen, a cancer that’s already metastasized to his lungs. Prognosis is most likely one week.  This from a boy who was after a skunk, and racing the fence with a deer only days ago.  I’m in complete shock and utterly devastated.  He’s my heart terrier, my boon companion.  I was sure I would have him for at least 10 more years as I had the Winston before.  But its not to be and by this time next Sunday, my Winston will be gone.

So, because I’m in pieces and I need to spend as much time as I can with him, I’m re-posting this morning A Tale of Two Winstons, the journey of how this magnificent Winston came into my life.  Oh, he will always be a part of my heart. He’ll be so missed.

WinstonII home

 

A Tale of Two Winstons

 

Somethings are just meant to be, no explanation, no rational reason, they just are.  Somewhere a song is sung, a ripple forms in the water, a door closes, a window opens, and a dog finds its way back to its forever home.

It’s been a week to the day that Winston died, and this household has been a very changed, quiet place.  The dogs have been upset and grieving as have I.  Then this morning we woke to the smell of gas.  Flinging open the windows, we called the gas hotline and quickly the emergency crew arrived to locate the source and shut down the gas line.  It was a small issue, one quickly resolved but it meant that we were all home for the day, an unlikely occurrence. We had food we intended to donate to the local animal shelter and now had the time to do it. I checked the computer for address and hours of operation for the Montgomery County Humane Society.

There on the website was a picture that riveted me.  Up for adoption, dog 151 who looked remarkably like Winston.  I tucked that picture into my head, gathered up the food and we left for the shelter.  I checked in and we waited for our name to be called to state our business.  Upon hearing my name, I approached the desk and they gave me a slip, asked what dog I wanted to see and directed me to the back towards the kennels.  I didn’t correct them.

Through the door, past kennels full of dogs needing homes.  I averted my eyes, my heart sore.  We approached a cage, I looked down and nearly fainted.  There he stood, tail waving, face open and smiling, his entire body shaking in happiness – Dog 151.  He looked just like Winston, almost identical.  The attendant hooked him up to a leash and we took him outside, all the while telling us he just came in yesterday.  He was neutered, 4 years old, and had been rehomed twice.  We looked at him, he looked at us, and I heard myself saying “we want him, we want to adopt him”.  There was never a moments hesitation.

She handed us a slip of paper.  How can something so flimsy carry such weight?  It meant that he was taken.  How I hated leaving him there in the kennels while the routine paperwork had to be filed.

There were pages to fill out, and pages of information about him to be received.  Instead of having to wait for an interview, somehow someone was available to interview us immediately instead of the usual waiting period.  We sat and waited for our name to be called,  looking over the paperwork.  I was focused on the staff,  when I heard my name called out.

“Melanie, his name is Winston.”

“What?”

“His name is Winston!!!!!”

Disbelieving, I looked at the paper she was holding up.  There, plain as day, next to the name for the dog being given up was the word Winston.  Dog 151 was Winston.   The tears that had been threatening from the moment I saw him spilled over.  The staff asked about the tears and the story of Winston poured out.  Even they thought the series of events unlikely.  The wonderful person who was our adoption counselor. Addie Soares who interviewed us had Winston brought in and he was as much a part of the interview process as we were. Sitting at our feet, body wagging a mile a minute, it was clear to all we were a family.  We talked some more and then she asked if we wanted to take him home today.  The answer was a resounding “yes”.

We had been warned he would likely bolt because of past issues so they gave us all new tags, harness and collar.  We keep a leash in the car just in case a dog needs to be rescued.  Out to the jeep we went.  Winston took one look at the car and leaped for the seat.  The ride home was a breeze as he sat safe and interested in my lap.  Then we were home.  Questions formed in my mind.  What would Willow and Kirby think?

I shouldn’t have worried. Willow kissed him, and Winston kissed her back.  Kirby came running up, happy to greet him.  Turns out Winston was just as overjoyed to see Kirby.  We employed the usual tactics to introduce new dogs to each other but really we needn’t have bothered.  Much sniffing ensued, much licking ensured, much peeing ensued, and they were fine.  So were we, again.

Now we are all ensconced on the bed, watching The Voice, and the dogs are sleeping peacefully next to us on the bed as well.  This is why king sized beds were invented.  Winston’s feet are moving in his sleep, his brows moving in tandem.  His slumber is full of dreams. Willow is curled up on her pillow and Kirby is doing his normal imitation of a teenage boy, unmoving and splayed out.  We are at peace, and we are whole once more.

There are certainly differences between them as it should be.  One is not the other.  One is not the replacement for the other, and their differences are to be celebrated.  This Winston has a long undocked tail, and a wide open personality.  This Winston lacks the arduous back history of my other Winston.  That Winston was wary of new circumstances, never taking treats or unfamiliar food.  This Winston took two treats immediately and then looked for more.  But there are also similarities.  The huge personality that says I will not give in, that persistent nature, hearty spirit and indomitable soul.

He is sleeping on his back now, at ease in posture and attitude.  Winston knows he is home.

They had asked us if we intended to keep the name Winston.  I looked at him, and thought of all the things that came together for us to become a family, and replied “yes, that is his name.”  He is Winston, a different Winston but Winston none the less.  Different but equal.

A song is sung, a wing beats on the wind, a direction is chosen, ripples form and a dog comes home just as another leaves.  Who is to say how these patterns are formed, and the paths chosen?   Somehow I know this was meant to be and Winston is smiling down upon us.  I will always love my Winston and miss him.  I will celebrate and welcome this Winston’s homecoming.

One is mourned and one is found.  A home is made whole as is a heart.  I swear I hear a song and a bark in the air…..

Here is Winston finally in his forever home.WinstonII asleep

 

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, January 14:

  • This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
  • Cover Reveal for LOVE TIMES FIVE by Lily G Blunt

Monday, January 15:

  • Review Tour – Lost In Time – A.L. Lester
  • BLITZ Beneath the Surface by Rebecca Langham
  • BLITZ Life After Humanity by Gillian St. Kevern
  • A Caryn Review: Lost In Time by A.L. Lester
  • A Stella Review: Friends and Lovers by Tinnean
  • An Ali Review:  A Purple Winter by Mel Bossa

Tuesday, January 16:

  • Bleeding Like Me by Riley Parks Tour
  • DSP Dreamspun Promo Jeff Adams and Will Knauss VIDEO
  • DSP GUEST POST BA TORTUGA ON Fighting Addiction
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: Fighting Addiction (Fighting Addiction) by B.A. Tortuga
  • An Alisa Release Day Review: Beneath This Mask (Enhanced #3) by Victoria Sue
  • An Alisa Release Day Review: Ghost of a Chance (Requiem Inc. #1) by Kris T. Bethke

Wednesday, January 17:

  • Cover Reveal for Selina Kray’s In Wild Lemon Groves
  • Riptide Publishing Tour and Giveaway for Tribute Act by Joanna Chambers
  • Blog tour for Resist and Triumph charity anthology
  • An Ali Review: Two Man Station (Emergency Services #1) by Lisa Henry
  • A MelanieM Review:  Tribute Act (Porthkennack #8) by Joanna Chambers
  • A Stella Review:The Fortune Hunter by Bonnie Dee

Thursday, January 18:

  • DSP Promo Amy Spector
  • Release Day Blitz A Way with You by Lane Hayes
  • Riptide Publishing Tour and Giveaway: Romantic Behavior by LA Witt and Cari Z
  • A Julia Review :Thirteen Mercies, Three Kills by Liv Olteano
  • A MelanieM Audiobook Review: Spun! by JL Merrow and Mark Steadman (Narrator)
  • A Stella Pre Release Review: When the Devil Wants In by Cate Ashwood and J.H. Knight

Friday, January 19:

  • Book Blast – The Loss of Self – An Intimate Autobiography by Alek Martin
  • Release Blitz – The Station – Keira Andrews
  • Review Tour – Coach’s Challenge (Cayuga Cougars #3) – V.L. Locey
  • A MelanieM Review: Coach’s Challenge (Cayuga Cougars #3) by V.L. Locey
  • An Ali Review: An Amy Lane Christmas by Amy Lane (bundle)

Saturday, January 20:

  • A MelanieM Review: On Davis Row by N.R. Walker
 

Of Polar Vortexes. Bombogenesis and Thundersnow. This Week At Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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Polar Vortex. Bombogenesis. Thundersnow!

Yes, this is the week the weather took over Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words!  So cold my keyboard (ok, my fingers) just about froze!  Six degrees here and they are calling for much colder weather to come!  Nope, Maryland is officially known as The Temperate State.  Nothing temperate about these temperatures!  In fact the whole East Coast is frozen from Niagara Falls to Tallahassee, Florida.   Snow is falling in Texas to Florida. Iguanas are dropping like hail near the Everglades.  And the Meteorologists are having a field day, either defending or denying the use of some of the words I’ve used above.  Especially bombogenesis!  That one caused a howl!

Nice to see language and words with the power to make things pop on a daily basis!  You can find the definitions of these terms and others like seiche and haboob here.  Terrific article but I’m more interested in the way these words flew about the media.  People got downright Twitterpated!  There’s a polar bombogenesis coming! RUN!!!!!!! To the grocery store or the liquor store or wherever one runs.  But run!  Not sure where they thought we were going?  Alaska?  Because it’s downright warmer there then here.  How about “bomb cyclone”?  Heard that one too!  What terms have you been hearing?  How have you been coping with the cold, if at all?  Maybe you are one of the luckier ones and live outside the “frozen zone”, what advice, other than “Let It Go” (runs and hides) would you have for us?

I’ve been taking the cold by staying inside with the dogs and reading (and binging Netflix I confess).  The cold (a 2 degree morning today) is good for that.  Luckily I’ve had some wonderful stories for company.  Charlie Cochrane’s Lindenshaw Mysteries (a cozy if ever there was one) is on it’s third installment.  Just terrific.  Plus I have some old favorites I’m discussing below.  What are you all reading during this “bomb cyclone”? Or winter hurricane?  What tales are keeping you warm? More about that later….

Now, onto this week.  There are some very special books we are reviewing this week, some with starts that go way back! This week I’m finishing up a trilogy that started in 2009.  That would be Astrid Amara’s wonderful Bellskis series.  One came out in holiday season 2009, then another during the holiday in 2011, and then…nothing.  I was bereft!  I loved this series and couple!  Then the news that Loose id was closing and the final story arrived.  Wedding Bellskis!  Be still my heart.  All three are reviewed this week.  Astrid Amara’s trilogy combines  murder, mystery, Hanukkah, a sometimes rocky romance, and a couple to remember.  Check them out!

Next up?  Another story  with it’s start years ago.  That would be Laura Baumbach’s Genetic Snare.  How many of you science fiction lovers remember the first story?   That would be Details of the Hunt (Details #1) by Laura Baumbach published back in 2006 (2007).  Honestly I can’t remember which year I read but I think it was 2006.  A long time!  Anyway, then she announced there would be a sequel….which never came.  Which because she was busy establishing MLR Press among other things.  Now, years later, we are finally getting that story!  There’s a time traveled pirate, a huge alien who talks like a film noir gangster, suspense, and alien tentacle sex..sort of.  Yes, it works but you really need to read both books.

Finally there’s Amy Tasukada’s Yakusa Path series.  The third book is out and I’m reviewing it this week.  It was one of my Best of 2017 and it looks as though it will be on my 2018 list as well.  Just amazing.  So if you don’t mind gritty, brilliant, bloody fiction, check out One Thousand Cranes (Yakuza Path #3) by Amy Tasukada.  Again you will need the entire series.

All that and so much more!  There’s a few more holiday stories and audiobook reviews and everything in between.  Plus giveaways, author interviews, and guest posts!  Stay with us, stay warm, and stay safe….

More about the giveaway at the end of the post.

 

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, January 7:

  • Of Polar Vortexes. Bombogenesis and Thundersnow.
  • This Week At Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
  • A MelanieM Review: Carol of the Bellskis (Bellskis, #1) by Astrid Amara

Monday, January 8:

  • Hannah Carmack on Seven-Sided Spy
  • Blog tour *Bleeding Like Me by Riley Parks
  • DSP Promo Ari McKay
  • A Stella Review: Like a Gentleman by Eliot Grayson
  • A MelanieM Review: Beyond The Tunnel by Dan Mitton
  • An Alisa Review: Tangled Up in You by Emily Carrington
  • A Lila Audiobook Review: Uncommonly Tidy Poltergeists by Angel Martinez and Michael Pauley (Narrator)

Tuesday, January 9:

  • Release Blitz – Lost In Time – A.L. Lester
  • DSP Promo Logan Meredith
  • DSP Promo Z. Allora on The Great Wall
  • A Jeri Release Day Review: Bleu Balls (Balls to the Wall #7) by Tara Lain
  • A Lila Release Day Review: Southernmost Murder by C.S. Poe
  • A MelanieM Review: Bring Me the Dead by Becky Black

Wednesday, January 10:

  • Release Blitz – Coach’s Challenge (Cayuga Cougars #3) by V.L. Locey
  • Release Blitz – Forever With You by Londra Laine
  • Review Tour – Amy Tasukada’s One Thousand Cranes
  • A Stella Review: Mended With Gold by Lee Welch
  • A MelanieM Review: A MelanieM Review:  One Thousand Cranes (Yakuza Path #3) by Amy Tasukada
  • An Alisa Audiobook Review: Freckles by Amy Lane and Nick J. Russo (Narrator)

Thursday, January 11:

  • DSP Promo Andrew Grey
  • Harmony Ink Promo Gene Gant
  • Riptide Tour & Giveaway: Relay by Layla Reyne
  • A MelanieM Review: Genetic Snare (Details #2) by Laura Baumbach
  • An Alisa Review: Christmas Kisses at the North Pole by Jessie Pinkham
  • A MelanieM Review: Miracle of the Bellskis (Bellskis, #2) by Astrid Amara

Friday, January 12:

  • Release Blitz & Review Tour for Rebecca Cohen’s Not All Chocolates & Cuckoo
  • Review Tour for Sam Burns’ Blackbird In The Reeds
  • Riptide Tour and Giveaway: Two Feet Under by Charlie Cochrane
  • A MelanieM Review: Two Feet Under (Lindenshaw Mysteries #3) by Charlie Cochrane
  • A MelanieM Review: Not All Chocolates & Cuckoo Clocks by Rebecca Cohen
  • A Stella Review: Composing a Family: A Mannies Incorporated Novel by Sean Michael

Saturday, January 13:

  • A MelanieM Review: Magical Rescue (Shifting through the Snow Book 8) by Laura Baumbach
  • A MelanieM Review:Wedding Bellskis (Holidays with the Bellskis, #3) by Astrid Amara

 

 

 

 

 

Best of 2017 Giveaway

Who has made an impact on you this year?  Start thinking about it.  This week starts our Best of 2017 Giveaways.  We need your Best of in whatever Categories you would like to submit.  Have a Best of Covers?  Great!  How about a Bests of Supernatural Romance? Perfect! Best Historical Romance? Love it!  Getting the idea?  So what’s your Best of 2017?  I will be gathering mine for the next 2 weeks and will trot them out at the end of the month.  Prizes will be offered up! Gift certificates, more than one, for participations and more.

Our Winners are:   Purple Reader, H.B., and Ana!  A $10 Gift Card will be yours.  Happy New Years to all of you and a huge thank you to everyone that provided us with all those lists.  I will be putting up a page with everyone’s 2017 Lists this week so   be on the lookout for that too!  New Giveaway up next week! Yep the Polar Vortex Giveaway!

So Long 2017! Hello 2018! It’s Our Final 2017 Best of Lists. This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words.

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So Long 2017! Hello 2018! It’s Our Final 2017 Best of Lists.

Well, today as we usher out 2017 (and I can’t say I’m entirely sorry to see it go), I will say it’s been a wonderful year in terms of stories, at least for me, and as far as I can tell, for some of you too.  So buckle up, my buttercups, grab something to make lists with, whether it be old fashioned paper and pen or your smartphone or pad, and prepare yourself for some marvelous Best of Lists from readers, reviewers, and myself!

♦︎

There have been series that ended this year (and I’m including trilogies here) that were just outstanding, new discoveries made of authors both established and newly published, great stories that cut to the heart of why we read, and series that either started or continued that made us laugh, cry, blew our minds with the author’s creativity and wild imaginations!  Oh the joy of it all!

♦︎

Plus the happiness that we here at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words have been able to share it all with you and have heard from you in return.  It’s been a very rich year indeed.

Best of

From Our Readers

Lennis:

My Bests:
Best Contemporary is tough. I liked How To Bang A Billionaire by Alexis Hall, Illegal Contact by Santino Hassell, and Rule Breaker by Lily Morton.
Best Fantasy for me would be The Heart of The Lost Star by Megan Derr, Lord Mouse by Mason Thomas, A Destiny of Dragons by T.J. Klune. I wasn’t sure if I should add Broken by Jex Lane to this, or have it be Best Paranormal? Let’s go with that.
Best Science Fiction would be Moro’s Price by M. Crane Hana and Dali by E.M. Hamill.
Best Cover. Natasha Snow has had an awesome year! Controlled Burn and Adrift are some favorites. The Foxling Soldati cover by L.C. Chase and One Last Try cover by Lou Harper are also eye catching.

suze294

My 5* reads from this year
The Executive Office series, Tal Bauer
Sins of the cities series, KJ Charles
Forever Haunt (Jimmy McSwain 5), Adam Carpenter
This Fire Inside, Jordan Nasser
What It Looks Like, Matthew J Metzger
Wolfsong, TJ Klune
Priddys Tale, Harper Fox
Bitter Legacy, Dal Maclean
Switched, NR Walker
The Definitive Albert J Sterne, Julie Bozza
Reaping Fate, AJ Rose

From Ana:

My Bests:
Best Mystery: Kill Game by Cordelia Kingsbridge and Risky Behavior by LA Witt & Cari Z
Best Audiobook: Femme by Marshall Thornton
Best Cover:Antisocial by Heidi Cullinan
Best Contemporary (this is hard to choose, so many good ones): Becoming Kerry by Lynn Kelling, The Impossible Boy by Anna Martin, Off the Ice by Avon Gale and Piper Vaugh, Manic Pixie Dream Boy by KA Merikan and Disease by Hans M Hirshchi
Best Dark Theme: Backdoor Politics by CL Mustafic

Amy:

Favorite On-Going Series in 2017

Hexworld by Jordan L. Hawk
Aberrant Magic by Lyn Gala
Offbeat Crimes by Angel Martinez
Bad Behavior by L.A. Witt and Cari Z
Rainbow Cove by Annabeth Albert
Scoring Chances by Avon Gale

and more from Didi:

I’m adding two more lists of mine here, for PNR and May/December (or Age-Gap as one MC’s not into his December yet 😉 ).

Best Paranormal Romance:
– Spectred Isle by KJ Charles
– Hexslayer by Jordan L. Hawk
– Undertow by Jordan L. Hawk
– The Well by Marie Sexton
– Fraud Twice Felt by JT Hall

Best May/December Romance:
– Off the Ice by Avon Gale & Piper Vaughn
– Spun! by JL Merrow
– Trust the Chaser by Annabelle Albert
– Risky Behavior by LA Witt & Cari Z (I cheated, it’s more age-gap than May/December, I think)
– Permanent Ink by Avon Gale & Piper Vaughn

Best of Lists from STRW

 More from Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Reviewers:

 From Lila:

Looking back on my shelves, The Best of 2017 (according to me) are:

January – Chosen Pride by Mary Calmes
February – Red Dirt Heart by N.R. Walker
March – Borrowing Trouble by Kade Boehme
April – Tell Me the Truth by Lisa Oliver
May –  The Love Interest by Cale Dietrich
June – The Palisade by Rosalind Abel
July – That Alien Feeling by Alessandra Hazard
August – The Heart of the Lost Star by Megan Deer
September – Strange Bedfellows by Cardeno C.
October – Locked in Silence by Sloane Kennedy
November – The Hideaway by Rosalind Abel
December – An Omega for Christmas by L.C. Davis
And some extra mentions:

·         Best Read for STRWBonfires by Amy Lane

MelanieM Best of 2017

Here are my lists, many and long as I warned everyone.  What a year and I still mourn the books I hesitatingly left off.  These are listed in absolutely no particular order excerpt that I was scrambling to look at my notes and books kept popping up here and there….

♥︎Best Contemporary Fiction with Romance

Ghost (Executioners #1) by J.M Dabney
Joker (Executioners #2) by J.M Dabney
Watermelon Kisses by Freddy Mackay
There’s This Guy by Rhys Ford
Shelter the Sea (The Roosevelt, #2) by Heidi Cullinan
Antisocial by Heidi Cullinan
Switched by NR Walker
Late in the Day (The Vault #2) by Mary Calmes
Micah Johnson Goes West (Get Out #2)
by Sean Kennedy
House of Cards (Porthkennack #4) by Garrett Leigh
Foxglove Copse (Porthkennack #5) by Alex Beecroft
Fair Chance (All’s Fair #3) by Josh Lanyon
Hawaiian Orchid (The Hawaiians 2) by Meg Amor
Snowblind by Eli Easton
Who We Are by Nicola Haken
Fishy Riot by Lindsey Black
Rhino Ash by Lindsey Black

Bonfires by Amy Lane
Catch and Release (The Release, #3) by B.A. Tortuga

♥︎Best Contemporary Fiction (not a romance)

Blood Stained Tea (The Yakuza Path #1) by Amy Tasukada

♥︎Best Science Fiction

The Stark Divide (Liminal Sky #1) by J. Scott Coatsworth
Sūnder (Darksoul #1) by Lexi Ander
The Jackal’s House (Lancaster’s Luck #2) by Anna Butler – steampunk

 ♥︎Best of Fantasy:

His Mossy Boy (Being(s) in Love#8) by R. Cooper
Dim Sum Asylum by Rhys Ford
The Heart of the Lost Star by Megan Derr
Ravens (Inheritance #3) by Amelia Faulkner

♥︎Best Supernatural/Paranormal:

Bitten by Design (Regent’s Park Pack #2) by Annabelle Jacobs
Skim Blood and Savage Verse (Offbeat Crimes #3) by Angel Martinez (actually all the books in this series)

♥︎Best Series:

Aisling Trilogy by Carole Cummings (high fantasy)
The Hawaiians by Meg Amor (contemporary romance)
Offbeat Crimes by Angel Martinez (humor, fantasy, supernatural)
Nicky and Noah Mysteries by Joe Cosentino  (high camp, high humor, mystery)
Inheritance by Amelia Faulkner (fantasy, supernatural)
The Kingdom Series (Vol 1 & 2) by RJ Scott (fantasy)
Rainbow Cove by Annabeth Albert
#gaymers by Annabeth Albert
Being(s) in Love by R. Cooper
The Release series by BA Tortuga
The Sin Bin by Dahlia Donovan (contemporary)
The Yakuza Path series by Amy Tasukada (contemporary fiction) violent, bloody, brilliant, not romance)

 ♥︎Great Series Ending:

Sanctuary Series by RJ Scott
Texas Series by RJ Scott
Mahu by Neil S. Plakcy
All’s Fair by Josh Lanyon
Werecat series by Andrew J. Peters
Holiday with the Bellskis by Astrid Amara
End Street Detectives by RJ Scott (supernatural)

 

♥︎Holiday Series ~ special mention:Holidays with the Bellskis Series by Astrid Amara (final story just out)
Carol of the Bellskis (Bellskis, #1) by Astrid Amara
Miracle of the Bellskis (Bellskis, #2) by Astrid Amara
Wedding Bellskis (Holidays with the Bellskis, #3) by Astrid Amara

♥︎Best Covers:​

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Destiny of Dragons (Tales From Verania) by TJ Klune, Artist Paul Richmond
Red Fish, Dead Fish (Fish Out of Water#2) by Amy Lane, Artist: Reese Dante
Sunset at Pencarrow (World of Love)
by Lou Sylvre and Anne Barwell, Artist: Reese Dante
An Island in the Stars by Susan Laine, Artist:  Anna Sikorska
Antisocial by Heidi Cullinan, Cover art by Natsukoworks, Cover design by Kanaxa Designs.
The Lure of Port Stephen by Sydney Blackburn, Artist Natasha Snow
Manny Get Your Guy (The Mannies #2) by Amy Lane, Artist: Paul Richmond
Comes a Horseman (Echoes Rising #3) by Anne Barwell, Artist: Reese Dante
A New Way to Dance by Sean Michael, Artist: Anne Squires
The Glamour Thieves by Don Allmon, Artist: Simone
Conned
By Jana Denardo, Artist: Melody Pond
Sūnder (Darksoul #1) by Lexi Ander, Artist:Kirby Crow
The Blacksmith Prince by Beryll & Osiris Brackhaus, Artist:  Lady Tiferet
Foxglove Copse (Porthkennack #5) by Alex Beecroft, Artist: G.D. Leigh

 

 

 

 

 

♥︎

Well those are my choices and I’m sure I’ve even left a quite of few out.  How did all of your lists come out?  Did you all find some new books to add to your TBR lists on everyone’s Best of Lists?  Winner Announcements to come next week as they would get lost and we need to have something to look forward to!

Have a Safe and Happy New Year!  See you all in 2018!  Happy Reading from Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words to all of you!

 

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, December 31- Happy New Eve’s:

  • So Long 2017! Hello 2018! It’s Our Final 2017 Best of Lists.
  • This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words.
  • A Stella Advent Release Day Review: Eugene and the Box of Nails by Jaime Samms

Monday, January 1:

  • Book Blitz: Blackwelder 2164 by Christopher D. J
  • BLITZ The Calling by MD Neu
  • RIPTIDE TOUR Reckless Behavior by LA Witt and Cari Z
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Operation Green Card by GB Gordon
  • A Kai Audiobook Review: Nachos & Hash by Brandon Witt and Dominic Carlos (Narrator)
  • A MelanieM Review: Hurricane by BA Tortuga

Tuesday, January 2:

  • Cover Reveal for Shae Connor’s Teaching Ben
  • DSP Promo K.A. Mitchell
  • RIPTIDE TOUR On Solid Ground by Quinn Anderson
  • Tour: A Different Light by Morningstar Ashley
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: Prelude to Love by Anne Barwell
  • A MelanieM Review: Bound by Thorns (Dragon Soul #3) by Sean Michael

Wednesday, January 3:

  • Blog Tour *Won’t Feel A Thing by C.F. White
  • Release Blitz – Bonnie Dee – The Fortune Hunter
  • DSP Dreamspun Promo Anne Barwell
  • A VVivacious Review: OBSESSION by Theophilia St. Claire​
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Outside the Lines by Anna Zabo
  • A MelanieM Review: Wait For Me by Kris Jacen

Thursday, January 4:

  • Release Blitz & Review Tour Request – Sam Burns – Blackbird In The Reeds
  • Sin and Saint by J.M. Dabney RDB, Tour
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: Sin and Saint by J.M. Dabney
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Reckless Behavior by LA Witt and Cari Z
  • A Stella Review: The Best Gift by Shawn Lane
  • An Alisa Review Wolf’s Kiss by Siryn Sueng

Friday, January 5:

  • Dreamspinner Promo: Alix Bekins and Connie Bailey, authors of Song and Key
  • Release Blitz – Vows Box Set – Addison Albright
  • RELEASE BLITZ Felix and the Prince by Lucy Lennox
  • A MelanieM Audiobook Review: Smitty’s Sheriff by Cardeno C
  • A Stella Pre Release Review: When the Devil Wants In by Cate Ashwood and JH Knight
  • An Alisa Prerelease Review: Forever With You By Londra Laine

Saturday, January 6:

  • A MelanieM Review: Ghoulish by Kat Bellamy

 

 

 

 

A Stella Review: If the Fates Allow Holiday Anthology

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RATING 4 out of 5 stars

During the holidays, anything is possible—a second chance, a promised future, an unexpected romance, a rekindled love, or a healed heart. Authors Killian B. Brewer, Lynn Charles, Erin Finnegan, Pene Henson, and Lilah Suzanne share their stories about the magic of the season.

*

Gracious Living Magazine Says It Has to Be a Live Tree
By Killian B. Brewer
Determined to make his first Christmas with his new boyfriend magazine-perfect, Marcus seeks the advice of lovable busy bodies, the Do-Nothings Club. When he learns that his boyfriend, Hank, may have ordered a ring, Marcus’ attempts to transform his home into a winter wonderland get out of hand.

Shelved
By Lynn Charles
When library clerk Karina Ness meets a new patron, lonely business owner, Wesley Lloyd, she puts her own love life on hold and begins a holiday matchmaking mission to connect Wes with her uncle Tony.

Last Call at the Casa Blanca Bar & Grille
By Erin Finnegan
As the one-year anniversary of his lover’s death rolls around on Christmas, Jack Volarde finds himself at their old haunt—a bar called the Casa Blanca, where a new bartender helps him open up about loss, and see brightness in a future that had grown dim.

True North
By Pene Henson
Shay Allen returns to her hometown in Montana for the holidays with her best friend Devon with the intent to return home to L.A. by New Year’s Eve. Instead, the weather traps them in the small town, but the there’s a bright spot: her old crush Milla is still in town.

Halfway Home
By Lilah Suzanne
Avery Puckett has begun to wonder if her life has become joyless. One night, fate intervenes in the form of a scraggly dog shivering and alone in a parking lot. Avery takes him to a nearby shelter called Halfway Home where she meets bright and beautiful Grace, who is determined to save the world one stray at a time.

I’m a fan of holiday stories and I’m a fan of this publisher o I soon jumped at the chance of having this collection of LGBT shorts on my hands. I have to say some titles worked better than others but it still was a pleasurable reading.

Gracious Living Magazine Says It Has to Be a Live Tree By Killian B. Brewer 5 stars

I was waiting for new works from this author since I read Lunch With The Do-Nothings At The Tammy Dinette on January and I was so happy to meet Marcus again here in this short. Marcusa has moved to Georgia six months ago, he’s now working at the Tammy Dinette. He got new friends, new job and a new lover, Hank, the hot mechanic. Since I adored the novel, I was over the moon the author filled my wish to know more about Marcus and his new life. I found them ready to spend their first Christmas together, but most of all, ready to take baby steps toward a real future side by side. And a little misunderstang added more spice to the plot. I loved it!

Shelved By Lynn Charles 3 stars

this is not the first story I read by this author and although I was able to see her amazing writing style, I didn’t loved Shelved as I loved the other books Lynn wrote. Maybe cause there is a “double story”, one with a ff couple and one with a MM couple. And I would have preferred to have just Wes and Tony romance, simply cause I’m more interested in mature MCs. That said, I liked this short story and the amazing people and athmosphere the author created.

Last Call at the Casa Blanca Bar & Grille By Erin Finnegan 3,5 stars

This was the first time I read this author’s work and it was a surprise. To be honest, I’m actually not sure why, cause the writing was really good and intriguing, but I soon at troubles with the reading and I found myself pretty bored, I didn’t understand where the author was going to lead Jack. I was hoping something was going to happened and the story to take a new energy. And then I got an answer, and everything fell into the right place. It gave me hope and faith. A touching short about love and grief.

True North By Pene Henson 4 stars

I like the author writing and I was expecting this to be a FF story, it didn’t go exactly how I was hoping and fearing, the usual fake boyfriend clichè was ignored and the plot went versus the friends to lovers theme. I liked how both girls slowly approached each other after years of being apart. And I adored the ending, the promise of a plan to actually be together, gave the short some reality.

Halfway Home By Lilah Suzanne 3 stars

This short warmed my heart, if you are a dog lover, you can’t not like it and cheer for Avery to come out of her shell and open her life to Grace and to the world. I hoped for her to find some happiness and joy in the arms of a beautiful woman and in the sweet Rudy.

The cover art by CB Messer is adorable.

Sales Links:  Interlude Press | Amazon

BOOK DETAILS

ebook

Published December 1st 2017 by Interlude Press

ISBN13 9781945053481

Edition Language English