Do You All Read the Whatchamacallit?? This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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Do You All Read the Whatchamacallit?

By that I mean the paragraphs or pages the author writes before  you get started into the book?  I’m an avid reader of these things and love them deeply.  I often find that I feel that I know more about why the author felt compelled to write this story or why it’s situated in the location it’s in or even given a more in depth look at a main character because of what an author has written prior to starting their story.

But what the hell is it called?

Most, might have referred to it as The Foreward, myself included.  Wrongo!  That would have had to have been written by someone else, not the author themselves.  For correct usage see the flash fiction anthology Impact with it’s foreward by J. Scott Coatsworth.

So it would be either Introduction or The Preface.  How many of you know the difference?  I needed a refresher course myself so I   went looking for definitions and correct usages for all three.  A lovely blog, BPS Book Blog, supplied this succinct roundup:

From the BPS Book Blog:

… here are some definitions and descriptions – supported by the dictionary and the august Chicago Manual of Styleand proven to be helpful in my work as an editor and publisher ­– that my authors have found of assistance.

THE FOREWORD

A foreword (one of the most often misspelled words in the language) is most often written by someone other than the author: an expert in the field, a writer of a similar book, etc. Forewords help the publisher at the level of marketing: An opening statement by an eminent and well-published author gives them added credibility in pitching the book to bookstores. Forewords help the author by putting a stamp of approval on their work.

THE PREFACE

A preface is best understood, I believe, as standing outside the book proper and being about the book. In a preface an author explains briefly why they wrote the book, or how they came to write it. They also often use the preface to establish their credibility, indicating their experience in the topic or their professional suitability to address such a topic. Sometimes they acknowledge those who inspired them or helped them (though these are often put into a separate Acknowledgments section). Using an old term from the study of rhetoric, a preface is in a sense an “apology”: an explanation or defense.

THE INTRODUCTION

If a preface is about the book as a book, the introduction is about the content of the book. Sometimes it is as simple as that: It introduces what is covered in the book. Other times it introduces by setting the overall themes of the book, or by establishing definitions and methodology that will be used throughout the book. Scholarly writers sometimes use the introduction to tell their profession how the book should be viewed academically (that is, they position the book as a particular approach within a discipline or part of a discipline). This latter material is appropriate for a preface, as well. The point is that it should appear in the preface or the introduction, not both.

What brought all this on?

As I said I  always read them.  To bring me knowledge, insight into the story, what the author was thinking when they were writing it…all sorts of things.  They aren’t always labeled correctly but I love them dearly.

The one that launched this one was the Introduction to Ryan Field’s Pretty Man, a M/M reworking of Pretty Woman.  He writes about the total lack of any happy gay literature in the 20th century and his need to “fill the bill”. Ryan Fields now writes “happy romances” as a gay man for the youth today looking for literature much as he once did. How this got me thinking on so many levels (and researching).

Thankfully, there are so many positive and happy examples to point to from books to movies* these days (not tons amounts true in the movies more much more. Look at  but there are now LGBT movie channels) so progress has been made. Plus there is a veritable flood of Quiltbag fiction out there now to quench the thirst of those looking for happy endings for LGBTQIA couples.  The more writers the merrier I say.

But lets return to gay fiction of the 20th Century.  What books do you find or comes to mind?  Are they all tear fests?

Here are some that I found and the dates they were published:

Tales of the City (Tales of the City Series #1) by Armistead Maupin  1978
Rubyfruit Jungle by Rita Mae Brown   1973
Maurice by E.M. Forster 1913
A Single Man by Christopher Isherwood  1964
Kiss of the Spider Woman by Manuel Puig  1976
A Boy’s Own Story by Edmund White 1982
A Queer Kind of Umbrella (Pharoah Love, book 5) by George Baxt  1995

 

I also found childrens books about Daddy’s Roommate (1994) and My Two Uncles (1995) so I was wondering about the author’s timeline.  Some early 20th century classics are devastating certainly (Gore Vidal, James Baldwin to name just two), but a sea change had started with Stonewall and its ripples spread out and impacted everywhere and everything, media included.

Anyhow….see what a Introduction can do to me?  Laughing….

How to you feel about Forewards, Introductions, and Prefaces?  Do you read them? What do you learn, if anything from them?

And how do you feel about the 20th Century’s lack of feel good romantic gay fiction?  True or False?

As to Pretty Man…well, that review will come up and it caused me to do some thinking as well.  More on that later.

Now here is what our upcoming week is looking like.  Happy Reading and Listening!

 

 

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, August 19:

  • This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
  • Do You All Read the Whatchamacallit?
  • Release Blitz – In The Shadows – TL Travis

Monday, August 20:

  • Cover Reveal – Marina Vivancus – In This Iron Ground
  • Release Blitz – RJ Scott – Last Chance
  • Review Tour – Bitten By Her (Regent’s Park Pack #4.5) – Annabelle Jacobs
  • An Alisa Review : Love Spell by Mia Kerick
  • A MelanieM Review : Bitten By Her (Regent’s Park Pack #4.5) by Annabelle Jacobs
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Release Day Review: Threepeat by KC Wells and Parker Williams

Tuesday, August 21:

  • Book Blast – A Thread in Time by Jess Thomas
  • SERIES REVIEW TOUR – Directions by Jena Wade
  • DSP Cover Reveal Heart of a Redneck by Jodi Payne/BA Tortuga
  • An Ali Release Day Review: Hex and Candy (Strange Bedfellows #1) by Ashlyn Kane
  • A Jeri Release Day Review: Rocking the Cowboy by Skylar M. Cates
  • A Lila Release Day Review: Art House (Buchanan House #6) by Charley Descoteaux
  • A Lucy Release Day Review: Wanted Bad Boyfriend by TA Moore

Wednesday, August 22:

  • Audio Review Tour – Changing Lines – RJ Scott & V.L. Locey
  • Blog Tour Circle of Trust by Aimee Nicole Walker & Nicolas Bella
  • Riptide Tour Shelter from the Storm by Kate Sherwood
  • A Free Dreamer Review: Bones and Bourbon by Dorian Graves
  • A MelanieM Review : Dark City by Sarah Kay Moll
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Shelter from the Storm by Kate Sherwood

Thursday, August 23:

  • DSP Cover Reveal Femme Faux Fatale by Susan Laine
  • Of Princes False and True” by Eric Alan Westfall
  • Harmony Promo Beau Schemery
  • An Ali Review Death Days by Lia Cooper
  • A VVivacious Review Of Princes False and True by  Eric Alan Westfall
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Last Chance by R.J. Scott
  • An Alisa Audiobook Review Sweet Nothings (Amuse Bouche #1) by T. Neilson and Simon Ferrar (Narrator)

Friday, August 24:

  • Book Blast Born to be Wild by A.L. Simpson
  • DSP Promo Remmy Duchene on Tempt Me
  • A Stella Release Day Review: Midnight in Berlin by JL Merrow
  • An Alisa Review: 2230: The Perfect Year by CM Corett
  • An Alisa Review Up to Code (Directions #1) by Jena Wade
  • A MelanieM Audiobook Review: Sun and Shadow (Day and Knight #2) by Dirk Greyson and  Andrew McFerrin ( Narrator)

Saturday, August 25:

  • Looking Forward by Michael Bailey Release Blitz
  • Media Blitz – FINDING MY WAY HOME BY KENDEL DUNCAN
  • A MelanieM Review: Pretty Man by Ryan Field

 

 

 

 

 

 

*Gay Movies with Happy Endings!

Love, Simon
Big Eden
Jeffrey
Touch of Pink
Boys (Jongens)
Maurice
The Birdcage
The Way He Looks
Shelter
Beautiful Thing
Were The World Mine
G.B.F.
Kinky Boots
Priscilla, Queen of the Desert

And wait there’s more!

1) All Over the Guy
2) Boy Culture
3) East Side Story
4) Fourth Man Out
5) Friends & Family
6) God’s Own Country
7) Long Term Relationship
8) Latter Days
9) Salt Water
10) Save Me
11) Trick
12) Yossi

 

 

 

 

Review Tour for Goal Line (Harrisburg Railers #6) by RJ Scott & V.L. Locey (excerpt and giveaway)

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Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Length: 54,000 words approx.
 
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
 
Harrisburg Railers Series
 
Book #1 – Changing Lines – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #2 – First Season – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #3 – Deep Edge – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #4 – Poke Check – Amazon UK | Amazon UK
Book #5 – Last Defense – Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Blurb
 

Fear and sadness mark Bryan’s life, can Gatlin show him that you have to trust before you can love?


Gatlin Pearce is creeping up on thirty-eight and is still single. It’s not that he wants to be alone, it’s just that he’s too damn old to be in clubs filled with glittery gay boys who can’t even tell him who the Rolling Stones are.


Better to just spend his evenings at Hard Score Ink – his tattoo and artwork shop – creating masterpieces on human flesh, listening to the Railers games, and nursing a cold beer.


His solitary life is about to end when Bryan Delaney, the new Railers backup goalie, shows up at his shop looking for new artwork for his helmet. There’s some sort of sad story in those beautiful eyes of Bryan’s, and Gatlin finds himself more than a little infatuated with the tender new goalie.


Bryan Delaney leaves home at fifteen to live with a billet family. He just wishes that he could have escaped his alcoholic father and strictly devout mother earlier. Drafted to the Arizona Raptors he finds a new family, and his first love affair even if that relationship is marked with violence.


Being traded to the Railers is a shock to the system but the team isn’t like any other he’s ever played on and they truly seem to care about him. It’s only when he meets artist Gatlin, with their shared love of music and hockey, that he realizes how hard it is to escape the past.



August 8Jessie G, OMG Reads, Gay Media Reviews, We Three Queens, Urban Smoothie Read, Xtreme Delusions, Reading In Sarah’s Corner, August 10Love My Reads, Mainely Stories, The Geekery Book Review, August 15Love Unchained Book Reviews, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, MM Good Book Reviews, August 17Making It Happen, Nerdy Dirty & Flirty, Bookaholic & Kindle, August 20Open Mind For A Different View, My Fiction Nook, Wicked Faerie’s Tales & Reviews, August 22Drops Of Ink, Padme’s Library, Sarandipity, August 27MM Midnight Cafe, Wicked Reads, August 29Book Lovers 4Ever, August 31Mirrigold, Bayou Book Junkie, Lillian Francis

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Review can be found here.  We highly recommend it!
Excerpt


Keep your eye on Ten, he’s trouble.


That was all the text said, and I re-read it a few times as if more words would suddenly appear.


I don’t know why I looked for affection in any text that Aarni sent me because, in my kind-of-boyfriend’s own words, he wasn’t the demonstrative type. And he would always point out that someone could get hold of my phone. Then they would know that Aarni Lankinen, the villain of the Arizona Raptors, wasn’t everything he made himself out to be, that he wasn’t the playboy who fucked every woman within his reach. That he had a boyfriend on the side, and that it was me.


The phone rang, and I answered as soon as I saw his name. Aarni wasn’t the most patient guy on earth, and he liked it when I was fast to respond.


“Did you get my text?” Aarni asked without preamble.


“I did.”


“Don’t let me down now.”


I got the feeling, as he laughed, that he expected me to do that very thing. I still wasn’t sure what would count as letting him down. But given the kind of person I was—clumsy, quiet and only really focused when I was dressed for hockey—I kind of expected to fuck up.


The Arizona Raptors had chosen me in the 2014 draft, not long after my eighteenth birthday. I was the second highest ranking goaltender drafted that year, something to be proud of, I guess. But I’d not managed to stay up at NHL level, spending the rest of the time in the Raptors’ development team in Tucson. Until last year, when I’d actually been a starting goalie after both main goalies had been injured.


I hadn’t been stellar, and Arizona put me on waivers, leaving me vulnerable to being picked up by who the hell ever. My confidence had been rocked. I was a solid goalie for the development team, but the minute I got up to the primary team, NHL level, I choked. Why the hell did the Railers even want someone who hadn’t lived up to their early promise? I assumed I’d attend this training camp, and that would be it. They’d push me down to the Railers’ development team, and there I would stay.


Which wasn’t a bad thing, except they’d taken me from Arizona and from Aarni and it was the first time I’d been really on my own.


“Hello? Are you even listening to me?” Aarni snapped.


“Of course, I won’t let you down,” I lied.


I’m a good goalie, I stop pucks, I can be strong and focused and stay in my own head to track the plays in front of me.
Still, Aarni knew about me what I knew about myself; I’d choke at NHL level just as I had for the majority of my time with the Raptors.


I’m not ready. I should go back down to the minors.


“Also, don’t get comfortable there. They’re not going to keep you for long.”


“I know.”


“And don’t forget what assholes the Railers are. Don’t trust them, particularly wonder-boy Rowe. Arrogant fucker.”


I didn’t see Ten as arrogant at all, but then I was basing my assessment on TV interviews, including the one he’d given with Jared when they’d announced their relationship. I’d been proud of Ten and Jared for doing that, and part of me, the dark, hidden, ruined part, was green with envy that they were able to be open with the world.


I’d said that to Aarni, but he’d reacted badly and hadn’t talked to me for three days. His disappointment was a knife in my gut, and I hated every second of it. That was not happening again. He was right. Ten was a Stanley Cup Champion, a superstar, and if there had been NHL players at the Olympics, then he would undoubtedly have been on Team USA. No team would ask him to leave just because he had a boyfriend. It didn’t seem to be hurting the Railers, and they had a growing reputation as being LGBT-friendly.


“Jesus Christ, Bryan, are you even on this phone call?”


I pulled myself back from the edge. Aarni had said something about Ten being arrogant.


“I won’t forget,” I spoke with confidence so he’d realize I was listening.


“And remember I’m not there to watch your back.” He sighed deeply. “I worry there’s no one to look after you when you attract trouble. Especially from defenders like Max van Hellren. Asshole should have been thrown out of that game against us for what he did to me. Fucker lost us the chance at a championship. So fucking pleased he ended up collapsing. He deserved it.”


My chest tightened. Max wasn’t part of the Railers anymore. He’d retired after the cup win, but Aarni was right. There would be other guys there to step up in his place. Aarni had been furious, with a side order of mean, over what Max had done to him, checking him into the boards. But he’d finally calmed down, said he’d show Max what was what the next time the two teams met. He’d been so disappointed when Max had retired.


But Aarni was a good guy. He was the one who’d gotten involved when the bullying on the Raptors had gotten to be too much for me to handle. When the guys in the toxic locker room got on my case. I’d only played a few games at that level with the Raptors and had fucked every single one of them up. They’d hated it, but Aarni had been there for me.


He seemed to know the point when the rest of the team pushed it too far, always stepping in just before I was going to run from the room. He’d helped me so much, but he was back in Arizona, so far away.


“I’ll be okay,” I murmured, fear gripping me again about the kind of things I needed to face with this new team.


“I doubt that.” He sighed. “But you weren’t enough of all that for the Raptors to keep you, so you have no choice, and there’s nothing we can do about it, can we?”


“No.”


He must have heard the desperation in my voice. I hadn’t wanted the Raptors to give up on me, but that was hockey. One day I had woken up in Arizona as the backup to the backup, fucking things up, and the next day, the team had put me on waivers, and I was suddenly in snowy Pennsylvania.


“Good boy,” was all he said, but it was enough.


He hung up, but those two words gave me a shot of steel to my spine, and I settled my breathing before opening the car door. Security had let me right through to the player parking lot, and my Toyota sat right next to a sexy red Porsche. My salary had taken a hike, up to three million for the two-year contract I had here, so I probably needed a new car.


Even if the Railers saw through me and sent me packing, I’d still have enough money to buy a car.


“Hey,” someone called from behind me, and I immediately assumed that I was standing somewhere I shouldn’t have been. The man was in a guard’s uniform, tall, built and smiling at me benignly.


“I’m sorry. They told me to park there.”


“Of course. Bryan Delaney, right?” he asked and extended his hand for me to shake, which I did immediately after wiping the sweaty palm on my jeans.


“Yeah, Bryan,” I said when I realized I hadn’t answered his question.


“Welcome.” He thumbed at himself. “Name’s Pete. They said I needed to keep an eye out for the new guy.”


He dropped my hand, and I forced a smile onto my face, even though my stomach was churning. “Thank you.”


“This way.” He chatted on about the weather, life, hockey and something about his sister who lived in Arizona. By the time he dropped me outside an office, I knew enough about Pete to write a book. Thing is, his chatter stilled my nerves, and I wasn’t going into this room blind. I knew the name on the door, Alain Gagnon, former goalie for Vancouver, and one of the best goalie coaches in the business. I’d skyped with him once in his capacity as Goalie Coach for the Railers after they’d claimed me off waivers. He’d seen me coming to the Railers as a positive thing, a great thing. All I’d seen is my failure at NHL level hockey with the Raptors, and I remembered going back to Aarni and needing to be held.


Of course, Aarni had said he didn’t need to hug me, but he’d reassured me that, however I played, he would always have my back. I’d needed the comfort. His words of advice stayed with me even now.


I just want you to realize what you are and what your place on the team will be. Ten acts friendly, but he won’t care about you like I do. Stan? He’s had some lucky saves, and as for that fucker Van Hellren? You saw what he did to me in our last matchup. I wish you weren’t so naïve, Bryan. It’s unlikely you’ll get many starts, so don’t be disappointed when you get sent down to the minors.


I won’t be disappointed. I’d promised Aarni, and I’d made a vow to myself not to get too excited and involved.

RJ’s goal is to write stories with a heart of romance, a troubled road to reach happiness, and most importantly, that hint of a happily ever after.


RJ is the author of the over one hundred novels and discovered romance in books at a very young age. She realized that if there wasn’t romance on the page, she could create it in her head, and is a lifelong writer.


She lives and works out of her home in the beautiful English countryside, spends her spare time reading, watching films, and enjoying time with her family.


The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit and has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.


She’s always thrilled to hear from readers, bloggers and other writers. Please contact via the following links below:


Email RJ (rj@rjscott.co.uk)

V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, Dr. Who, Torchwood, walking, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, one dog, two cats, two Jersey steers and a flock of assorted domestic fowl.


When not writing lusty tales, she can be found enjoying her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand.

Cover Reveal for Second Chance Ranch (Montana #5) by R.J. Scott (Giveaway)

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Cover Design: Meredith Russell
Release Date: August 28 (wide) – August 30 (Amazon & KU)
 
Montana Series
 
Book #1 – Crooked Tree Ranch – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #2 – The Rancher’s Son – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #3 – A Cowboy’s Home – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #4 -Snow In Montana – Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Blurb
 
Rob arrives at Crooked Tree determined to find a safe place for his niece and nephew. A family for them is the final thing on his list, and then he can vanish completely. Falling for a local paramedic along the way, is a disaster in Rob’s otherwise perfect plans.
 
Paramedic Aaron, the middle of five brothers, would like someone to love. A great believer in fate he is convinced though, that one day he’ll find someone. He just never thought it would be a man in so much pain, or that children would be part of the package.
 
Rob is ready to leave. Aaron wants him to stay. Their love has an expiry date, and it’s tearing them apart. Can they find a way to save what they have?

 

RJ’s goal is to write stories with a heart of romance, a troubled road to reach happiness, and most importantly, that hint of a happily ever after.


RJ is the author of the over one hundred novels and discovered romance in books at a very young age. She realized that if there wasn’t romance on the page, she could create it in her head, and is a lifelong writer.


She lives and works out of her home in the beautiful English countryside, spends her spare time reading, watching films, and enjoying time with her family.


The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit and has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.


She’s always thrilled to hear from readers, bloggers and other writers. Please contact via the following links below:


Email RJ (rj@rjscott.co.uk)

REVIEW TOUR for Daniel (The Third Legacy) by RJ Scott (excerpt and giveaway)

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Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK – Now available in Kindle Unlimited
 
Length: 51,000 words approx
 
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
 
Legacy Series
 
Kyle – The First Legacy – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Gabriel – The Second Legacy – Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Blurb
 

Daniel worked hard at college, using coping strategies to shut himself off from any situation that might hurt. But, persistent nightmares and fears for his future drive him to revisit the past. Now Legacy might be the only place to give him a chance at peace.


After the tragic loss of his parents, Corey is head of the family now, and the welfare of his three younger sisters are what matters the most. Corey is desperate to find Daniel, tell him the truth and somehow convince him to keep secrets. Even if this leads to heartbreak.


When the world crumbles around Corey, and Daniel is running scared, Legacy ranch is their only hope.


A new story set in the world of Jack and Riley Campbell-Hayes and the Double D Ranch, Texas.



June 23Xtreme Delusions, The Way She Reads, OMG Reads, Reading In Sarah’s Corner, Abbey’s Fully Booked, June 25Love My Reads, June 29The Novel Approach, Making It Happen, MM Good Book Reviews, The Geekery Book Review, Cupcakes & Bookshelves, RAM PA Group, July 2Mirrigold, Sexy Erotic Xciting, Gay Media Reviews, July 4Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Lelyana’s Reviews, July 6Jim’s Reading Room, July 11Padme’s Library, Wicked Reads, July 13Lillian Francis, Virginia Lee


Excerpt

Chapter 1

Eight years ago

I want to go home.


Daniel Chandler trudged miserably down the long black ribbon of road, tears burning his eyes, and hopelessness tightening his chest. The heat of an August Texas day had subsided to a slightly cooler evening, and the sky was a brilliant mass of stars, but he couldn’t bring himself to look up at them anymore.

How had everything gone this badly wrong? Brett had promised that he would take Daniel somewhere far away from his foster family, but one weird question from an inquisitive cashier at a gas station and Brett had panicked. He’d refused to go any further, and said he was going home.

Daniel didn’t want to go back to San Antonio. He wanted freedom, and the ability to decide for himself where his life was going. He’d overheard his foster parents talking about how he was a liability; that he costed them more than they made, and he knew it was only a matter of time before they got rid of him anyway.

So he refused to leave with Brett and got out of the car.

Brett didn’t care, and he drove away, leaving Daniel stranded.

Daniel kicked a stone, stumbling a little when he misjudged the curve of the road. He’d eaten the cereal bars that Brett had tossed him and used up all the water. Which left him in the heat, without food or drink, and carrying a backpack with limited clothes. He also had books—his favorites, and a wallet which contained nothing more than a couple of hundred dollars he’d saved from his gardening job. The only official thing he had in the bag was his ID.

He’d left his most recent home at six-thirty a.m., with no real idea of where he was going or what he was doing, only knowing he wasn’t going to spend another minute in a house where he wasn’t wanted.

Hunching his shoulders against the weight of his backpack, he carried on. Sometimes he hummed to a song in his head. Other times he counted the steps he took, but most of the time he stared ahead, not counting or humming at all.

A car pulled up alongside him. No, a truck, and at first his heart leaped. Brett was back. He’d changed his mind and returned to help Daniel.

A female voice called out. “Can we give you a lift somewhere?” she asked through the open window.

Daniel saw she wasn’t much older than he was, long blonde hair swept up into a ponytail, her smile wide, her expression kind. A man sat in the driver’s seat, but he was in the shadows, and at first, Daniel couldn’t make out his face until he leaned forward. The first thing Daniel noticed was the dog collar, then the same kindly smile as the girl. They were clearly related, both fair, with light eyes and an angular balance to their features.

“Hello, young man. My daughter and I are heading to Laredo. Would you like us to take you?”

He smiled at Daniel, this man in black with the white collar. This was an average family. They probably thought he was a hitchhiker and were offering genuine help. If Daniel couldn’t trust a man of the cloth traveling with his daughter, then who could he trust? He scanned the road behind him, waiting for Brett to suddenly appear and pick him up, but he was tired, hungry, and verging on desperate.

“Thank you.” Daniel opened the back door. He’d never hitchhiked before, didn’t know what the etiquette was, but he felt like he should offer to pay. “I can cover gas,” he said.

“No need for that,” the dad said and extended a hand awkwardly over the seat, which Daniel shook. “Father Frank Martins and this is my daughter Andrea.”

Andrea glanced back at him and grinned again. “Hey.”

“Daniel,” Daniel replied, as mute as usual around a girl as he was with boys. She turned back to the front, and Frank put the truck in drive.

“Buckle up,” he said.

Daniel did as he was told. Then settled back for the ride.

“Where are you from?” Frank asked after a few moments of silence, filled only with the soft sound of tires on blacktop.

“San Antonio,” Daniel answered.

“Really? What brings you this far south?”

Andrea shushed her dad, “Stop asking him questions, Daddy.”

Her dad huffed a gentle laugh. “Sorry.” He used the mirror to see Daniel. “You like music?”

Daniel nodded, thankful to Andrea for running interference.

Frank fiddled with the stereo. Country music filled the cab, and Frank hummed along. Andrea was on her phone, as evidenced by the glow of light as screens changed, and Daniel regretted leaving his phone at home. In his mad, stupid, anger, he’d wanted no way for his foster parents to keep tabs on him, but right now, he kind of wished he could phone them. He should pluck up the courage and ask Andrea to borrow hers. Maybe give his foster-parents a quick call, apologize, get them to pick him up, or at least arrange a bus.

They would help him. He didn’t doubt that. Even if he’d been an idiot and they wanted to hand him off to the next family, they would never leave a fourteen year old kid stranded miles from home.

“You thirsty?” Frank asked, and before Daniel could answer, Frank had unlocked the glove box and pulled out a bottle of water, passing it back to Daniel.

He took it with grateful thanks and downed a third of it in thirsty gulps. They reached the outskirts of a small town, and the car slowed to a stop outside a cookie-cutter house, a pretty place with manicured lawns.

Andrea turned around to look at Daniel.

“This is where I get out,” she announced. “Nice to meet you, Daniel.”

I thought they were both going on to Laredo?

Frank turned around as well. “I can take you all the way into the city. It’s only another ten minutes or so to the bus station or somewhere like that? A hostel?”

“I’m not sure—”

Frank interrupted, “Or you could stay the night here or a motel. We have one a few blocks down from here.”

Andrea shut the door and jogged up to the house, vanishing inside.

“Could I just borrow your phone?” Daniel asked.

Frank smiled, nodded, and pulled out his phone, tutting as he did so. “Oh my, the phone’s dead. You want to use my house phone? Or shall I just get you to the city? The bus station, right? They have public phones there.”

So many decisions. So many difficult choices, he thought and yawned.

“Yeah.” Daniel just wanted to get home.

“Yeah, what?” Frank prompted.

Daniel blinked at him. He was tired, and everything felt kind of hazy. “Yeah, home.” Back to his pretend parents and his pretend family, but back to a warm bed.

“Come on. Get in the front here.”

Daniel did as he was told, his limbs feeling heavy, and his coordination shit. Finally, he was belted in the front, and he closed his eyes briefly, exhaustion washing over him.

“That’s a good boy,” Frank murmured. “You sleep now.”

The country music got quieter, Frank’s humming was louder, and the journey to the city took a long time, the car swaying, and Daniel’s head thicker, full of softness and a weird kind of peace. He saw fields and signs, but none of them made any sense. Finally, he couldn’t fight the overwhelming lethargy, so he slept.

And woke up in hell.

 

About The Author


RJ’s goal is to write stories with a heart of romance, a troubled road to reach happiness, and most importantly, that hint of a happily ever after.


RJ is the author of the over one hundred novels and discovered romance in books at a very young age. She realized that if there wasn’t romance on the page, she could create it in her head, and is a lifelong writer.


She lives and works out of her home in the beautiful English countryside, spends her spare time reading, watching films, and enjoying time with her family.


The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit and has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.

 

Email RJ (rj@rjscott.co.uk)
Goodreads Page
RJ’s Blog
RJ on Twitter
Facebook
Library Thing Page
Tumblr (some NSFW (not safe for work) photos)
Pinterest

A MelanieM Review: Last Defense (Harrisburg Railers #5) by R.J. Scott and V.L. Locey

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Rating: 4.25 stars out of 5

 

Two men afraid to feel, have to make choices that could end up breaking down their defenses and leading them back to love. 

Every time Max Van Hellren steps on the ice he knows it could be his last time. At thirty-two he’s past his prime but he’s also hiding a life-threatening injury that private doctors warn could kill him. This is his last season, and there’s a chance he could lift the Stanley Cup after fourteen years in the NHL. He just needs to stay safe and healthy; difficult when he’s known for his heavy hitting and with a propensity for dropping the gloves and putting his body in the way of pucks to keep his team safe. A one-night stand with a sexy man was just what he needed, dangerous and hot, but what if it turned into more? Would he have to share the secrets he so desperately tries to hide?

Ben Worthington had it all. A fulfilling job running the CrossRoads Shelter, his loving aunts, and a husband that understood his devotion to animals. Then, the love of his life left him, succumbing so quickly to an unexpected sickness that Ben never had time to say goodbye. The violent loss scarred him. Unable to move past his fears, he moves from lonely encounter to lonely encounter, slaking a desperate need that is eating away at him, but never making a connection that could lead him back into love. One night with Max makes him want more, but will giving into the temptation open the door to feelings he can’t contain?

Can these two broken man ever find a way to be together?

Last Defense is another wonderful addition to the Harrisburg Railers hockey series by R.J. Scott and V.L. Locey.  I just adore this series, written by two authors whose novels I love separately but together are producing a series that combines the excitement and camaraderie of pro hockey teams with high romance.  It just works so well!

And boy, can they write hockey! I know V.L. Locey is a true blue hockey fan and it shows! Those action scenes on ice just power off the page!  But again I’m getting ahead of myself.

Here we have a relatively new addition to the Railer’s,Max Van Hellren, signed for an injured player on the recovery list.  Max is on borrowed time.  He has a medical condition known only to him and his doctor and this is his last season.  He wants to make it count.  Immediately the authors have given us a man we can understand.  He’s a poignant character, full of passion and about to lose that which he cares about.  With nothing to take its place.

Until Ben and his dog, Bucky walk into the arena and his life.  Ben also has his own void in his life, one left when his husband died suddenly.  Now his life is filled running their no-kill shelter and spending time with his elderly, and highly political aunts.

Switching points of view gives us in depth history and ability to be able to connect with each man as they meet, maneuver through their complicated maze of feelings about each other, the swirling outside family drama that arises, and, of course, the fact that the Railers are making a run for the Stanley Cup!!

I loved the characterizations here.  Incorporating Ben’s grief and fear over the loss of his husband and then extending that to the potential loss of another is a reasonable fear here for Ben.  One he needs to work through.  And Max’s issues with his health versus his needs and goals are also realistic and believable.

Always a bonus?  Seeing some of my other series favs pop up.  Like Stan the Railers Russian goalie in search of his perfect rescue dog for his family and of course Trent Hanson’s nana dressed all in orange (Deep Edge) doing her thing in the arena. Hint.  She’s not a Railers fan.  The series, like the team, is made up of everyone we’ve come to love and like a family they appear to support each couple and their relationship.

I would have liked to have seen a little bit more resolution to the family drama but maybe that;s because that awful family member might pop up again later in the series.  Can’t tell yet.  I would have loved to have seen him dealt with throughly. That’s my only slight issue here.

Otherwise I loved this tale.  Its adding up to just one more story fleshing out a team that’s unforgettable.  You don’t need to love hockey to love the Harrisburg Railers and the men who romance them.  Of course if you do, then its double and triple the fun!

Yes, I highly recommend this series and the authors.  Start at the beginning and work your way here.  It’s so much more fun that way!

 

Cover Design: Meredith Russell.  Love this cover.  Works so well for the characters involved.

Sales Links:  Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 170 pages
Published May 16th 2018 by Love Lane Books Limited
ISBN139781785641145
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesHarrisburg Railers #5

 

Harrisburg Railers Series

Book #1 – Changing Lines – Amazon US | Amazon UK

Book #2 – First Season – Amazon US | Amazon UK

Book #3 – Deep Edge – Amazon US | Amazon UK

Book #4 – Poke Check – Amazon US | Amazon UK

Review Tour – Last Defense (Harrisburg Railers #5) by R.J. Scott and V.L. Locey (excerpt and giveaway)

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Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Length: 52,000 words approx.
 
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
 
Harrisburg Railers Series
 
Book #1 – Changing Lines – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #2 – First Season – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #3 – Deep Edge – Amazon US | Amazon UK
Book #4 – Poke Check – Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Blurb
 

Two men afraid to feel, have to make choices that could end up breaking down their defenses and leading them back to love.

Every time Max Van Hellren steps on the ice he knows it could be his last time. At thirty he’s past his hockey prime but he’s also hiding a life-threatening injury that private doctors warn could kill him. This is his last season, and there’s a chance he could lift the Stanley Cup after fourteen years in the NHL. He just needs to stay safe and healthy; difficult when he’s known for his heavy hitting and with a propensity for dropping the gloves and putting his body in the way of pucks to keep his team safe.

A one night stand with a sexy man was just what he needed, dangerous and hot, but what if it turned into more? Would he actually have to share the secrets he so desperately tries to hide?

Ben Worthington had it all. A fulfilling job running the CrossRoads Shelter, his loving aunts, and a husband that understood his devotion to animals. Then, the love of his life left him, succumbing so quickly to an unexpected sickness that Ben never had time to say goodbye. The violent loss scarred him.

Unable to move past his fears, he moves from lonely encounter to lonely encounter, slaking a desperate need that is eating away at him, but never making a connection that could lead him back into love. One night with Max makes him want more, but will giving into the temptation open the door to feelings he can’t contain?

Can these two broken men ever find a way to be together?



May 16 – Reading In Sarah’s Corner, Xtreme Delusions, Urban Smoothie Read
May 18 – Katie’s Book Corner, We Three Queens, The Geekery Book Review, Gay Media Reviews, Bookaholic & Kindle
May 21 – MM Midnight Cafe, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, My Fiction Nook, My Book Filled Life
May 23 – OMG Reads, Jim’s Reading Room, MM Good Book Reviews, RAM PA Group
May 25 – Nerdy Dirty & Flirty, Making It Happen
May 28 – Wicked Faerie’s Tales & Reviews, Wicked Reads
May 30 – Book Lovers 4Ever, Padme’s Library
June 1 – Book Review By Virginia Lee, Mirrigold, Bayou Book Junkie

Read Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words review here.
 
Excerpt
 

“Nice dog.” I paused just this side of the players’ entrance at the deep voice coming from behind me. There was something about that man’s voice…the timbre of the bass or the way he spoke. Not sure what it was, but the last time he’d spoken to me my body had had the same kind of reaction. A spear of latent heat low in my belly followed by a shiv of icy dread.

“Thanks.” I wanted to stare at the door. Or run. I couldn’t do either of those, though, so I turned to face the bearded man. Christ, but he was fierce-looking. Like a Viking, with piercing eyes and an aura that screamed berserker. He was bigger than me. Taller by at least four inches and probably sixty pounds. He was wearing a suit, as Stan and Erik had been, but his looked incredibly fine on his burly frame. Dark blue with a silver tie and a white shirt. His biceps strained the material trying to contain them.

“His name is Bucky.” There now, I had spoken to the man who made my heart leap around inside my chest like a frog on a highway.

“Like Captain America’s sidekick?” He looked down at my worn T-shirt with Cap’s shield on it.

“Exactly like that.”

He took another step, which put him into my little personal space bubble, his gaze and mine locked. I wet my lips and jerked my chin up a bit. I wasn’t going to let some hockey player intimidate me.

“Cute dog. Hot owner.” He gave me a long, slow look, petted Bucky, and stepped around the dull-witted man trying to digest the fact Mr. Fear had said he was hot. “Are you coming in, or are you teaching your dog to open doors mentally?”

“I’m here to see Layton Foxx.”

“Yeah? Well, I’m here to participate in morning skate.”

“I know who you are. Max van Hellren. You played for Washington four years ago.”

He tugged the door open and settled a kind of bored look on me. “Yeah, that was me. You like Washington?”

“Hometown team.” Bucky barked to back me up. Max smiled. All the ferocity that oozed out of him dissipated when he smiled. The man was seriously fine.

“Maybe I can change your mind about which team to cheer for, Mr. Washington Fan.”

“Ben. My name is Ben.”

He nodded just once, his hand still keeping the door open. “Ben. I like that. Suits you. So, are we coming in or are we going to flirt here in front of Pete?”

A security guard peeked around the door and winked at me. I wanted to die. Right there.

“I don’t flirt,” I snapped. I stalked around Max and Pete and went off to find Layton Foxx. Determination hot in my breast kept me from looking back to see if Max was checking out my ass. I hoped he was and I prayed he wasn’t.

RJ’s goal is to write stories with a heart of romance, a troubled road to reach happiness, and most importantly, that hint of a happily ever after.

RJ Scott is the bestselling author of over one hundred romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn’t with family either reading or writing.

The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit, and she has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.

V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, Dr. Who, Torchwood, walking, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, one dog, two cats, two Jersey steers and a flock of assorted domestic fowl.

When not writing lusty tales, she can be found enjoying her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand.

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Is History Repeating Itself? Amazon and eBooks.This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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Is History Repeating Itself? Amazon and eBooks

It wasn’t that long ago (1980’s and 1990’s) really that the book world was being torn asunder by the rise of the super bookstores like Crown Books, Waldenbooks, B. Daltons, Borders among others who, due to their size and discounting practices, under cut the neighborhood bookstores and put many out of business because they couldn’t compete.

Then ironically came computer ordering and  Amazon.  Slowly the sales started to erode at the major booksellers as the cheaper hardbacks and then eBooks gained (for many reasons) in popularity and people started buying, not just eBooks but all their books on the computer.  Equally ironic?  Later we saw the  rise of the niche bookstore, quietly returning back to the neighborhoods,  filling a hole and feeding a desire that never quite left because people love to visit bookstore, hold actual books, and talk with others who share their passions.

Now its 2018 and so many of those super bookstore chains are gone or failing done in by Amazon’s success, with Google, iTunes and others close behind. Banes and Noble‘s longstanding flagship store in Bethesda is closing…long a landmark. Lately I’ve been wondering if our LGBT publishers have been looking over their shoulders and wondering if they will be able to compete against this giant as well.  The list of publishers that have given up  recently is depressing because they were the ones I turned to when I wanted my stories to read all those years ago (Samhain Publishing, ARe, Loose Id, Torquere…).  it certainly wasn’t’ Amazon.

All those special niche publishers fed my need for these stories , giving home and platform to authors who had stories to tell.  There is a much longer list than I gave and not all ended gracefully or were well run, just as all small businesses everywhere.  Somehow with us, it seems more personal, our world smaller somehow.  Anyhow, I’m getting off-course again.  They did something Amazon couldn’t or wouldn’t do.  The small and personal against the enormous  business machine.

Does the #cockygate ring any bells for you?  Google it!

So now Amazon is in the publishing business as well as the selling business and the cost of eBooks is rising.  Some say it’s rising far above what people should have to pay for an eBook?  What’s too high?  $8 $9?  What’s your limit for an eBook? What’s the price you would pay for convenience and portability?  I get a feeling the market is about to find out.

What are your feelings about this?

Is there a built in balance supplied by the consumer?  With the big business on one end (no matter the type Amazon or Crown and the more personal small business mode on the other?  Or can both co exist financially if the right market balance is achieved?   Same with publishers.  Can the very real need for the small niche publishers ensure that they succeed even while the giants like Amazon and Google and iTunes roll on?

I hope that our continuing need for the personal, the quirky, and the individual will help us support our LGBT publishers while also not forgetting that there are self-publishing authors who need to make a living and do so via the juggernaut that is Amazon.  We need both and should give our support to both.    That doesn’t mean sacrificing scrutiny however, especially where in-house practices are concerned.  And not just Amazon.

Much has been said recently about the practices at Borders and the problems at Riptide Publishing has been well documented here.

So, my wonderful readers here, I have one more question to put to you. What responsibility, if any, do we have as readers, to the authors and publishers that we love to read and buy from? Is it enough to simply buy their stories and leave it at that?  Or do we have a larger responsibility here simply as book lovers to ensure that the concerns of all readers are being taken care of.  That all stories are safe, not pirated, not being withheld from the public because of a giant conglomerate’s minion’s desire to remove all titles with the word Cocky in it (#cockygate), or just because they contain LGBT subject matter on the cover or storyline.  Or even, help us, have a PoC on the cover.  Do we just keep buying books or do we do something?  And what?

 

What say you?  I’d really like to know…

 

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, May 13:

  • This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
  • Is History Repeating Itself? Amazon and eBooks
  • Blog Tour for Upon Broken Wings by EL Reedy and AM Wade
  • Ellie Keaton’s Unforgivable Tour

Monday, May 14:

  • Release Blitz – Swings & Roundabouts – Jackie Keswick
  • AUDIO TOUR The Solstice Prince by SJ Hime
  • Harmony Promo Andrew Demcak
  • An Ali Audiobook Review: Rank & File (Anchor Point #4) by L.A. Witt and Nick J. Russo (Narrator)
  • An Alisa Audiobook Review: Kairos by Mary Calmes and Michael Fell (Narrator)
  • An Ali Audiobook Review: Watching and Wanting (Housemates #4) by Jay Northcote and Lewis Carter (Narrator)

Tuesday, May 15:

  • DSP Promo Chase/Rhodes
  • Series Recap Blitz – C.F White – Responsible Adult Series
  • Release Blitz – Leta Blake – Alpha Heat
  • A Caryn Release Day Review: Nudging Fate by EJ Russell
  • A VVivacious Review Angel and Firebird by Nell Iris
  • A MelanieM Review:  The Henchmen of Zenda by K.J. Charles
  • An Alisa Review: The Power of Two by Leigh Vining

Wednesday, May 16:

  • Hybrid cover reveal and book blitz *Masters and Mages series by Alexis Duran
  • Release Blitz Tour – Last Defense (Harrisburg Railers #5) by R.J. Scott and V.L. Locey
  • Review Tour – On the Ice (Stick Side #1) by Amy Aislin
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: On the Ice (Stick Side #1) by Amy Aislin
  • A Stella Review Lock Nut(Plumber’s Mate Mysteries) by JL Merrow
  • A Lila Review: A Disposable Husband by Iyana Jenna
  • An Ali Audiobook Review: Free Falling (Extreme Escapes, Ltd.) by S.E. Jakes and Dorian Bane (Narrator)

Thursday, May 17:

  • DSP Promo Julia Talbot
  • RELEASE BLITZ A Tiny Piece of Something Greater by Jude Sierra
  • RIPTIDE TOUR Lock Nut (Plumber’s Mate Mysteries) by JL Merrow
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Syncopation (Twisted Wishes #1) by Anna Zabo
  • A Stella Review: Lock Nut(Plumber’s Mate Mysteries) by JL Merrow
  • An Ali Audiobook Review: Dirty Deeds (Dirty Deeds, #1) by SE Jakes and Adam North (Narrator)

Friday, May 18:

  • New Release Tour for Level Up by Annabeth Albert
  • Review Tour – Garrett Leigh’s Whisper
  • Review Tour – Exploration (Kinky in the City #1) by Quinn Ward
  • A Free Dreamer Review: Juggernaut  (Strain #0.5) by Amelia Gormley
  • A Jeri Review: Whisper (Skins #2) by Garrett Leigh
  • An Alisa Review:  Exploration (Kinky in the City #1) by Quinn Ward

Saturday, May 19:

  • Book Blitz for Level Up by Annabeth Albert
  • A MelanieM Review: :Level Up by Annabeth Albert

 

A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: The Sinner & The Saint (Ellery Mountain #8) by RJ Scott

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Rating: 3 stars out of 5

Nick Merrick left England amidst of storm of media attention. Berated for breaking his engagement to the daughter of a prominent member of Parliament, and for being gay and participating in a sex tape scandal, he seeks out the anonymity of his friend Jason’s house in Ellery Mountain while he unwinds and takes time to assess where he’s going with his life. He doesn’t meet his sexy neighbor Ben until Ben reports a break-in at the house where Nick is staying. Not knowing Jason gave someone access to the property, Ben is shocked when the cops show up and he meets the gorgeous guy with the British accent who’s suddenly thrust into his life.

Ben is a doctor, on temporary assignment in Ellery Mountain, working with Daniel to bring a burn unit to the Veteran’s Center. The gruff loner is looked upon as a hero since he’s the man who saved Daniel’s life in the Army but he doesn’t feel heroic. On the inside he’s a mess and considers himself “less than” many others who served their country due to the decisions he had to make that ultimately negatively affected so many good men.

The story moves along anticipated lines with characters from the town, some of whom may be well-known to those who follow the series, interacting with the two MCs. We learn that the media has blown Nick’s problems out of the water and the reality is that he and his fiancé are best friends and the breakup was a way for her to find happiness with the man she really loved. We also learn there are no sex tapes and we get to watch the push-pull sexy interactions between Nick and Ben as they decide to have no-strings sex and nothing more. And we get to see that plan fail.

Typical of RJ Scott’s writing in other books in this series, the MCs find their way to a resolution of their problems and a happy ending. Along the way, some of their problems dissipated rather quickly, some were only superficially addressed, and some played out a resolution.

Though I read books one through three, I haven’t read any since that time. However, it was easy to follow this story. In fact, other than recognizing character names from previous books, it was quite simple to read this and I’m sure anyone can read it as a standalone.

A light, sweet romance mixed with a bit of sex, but thankfully not an overload of it, this book is an easy one-day read.

~~~

The cover by Meredith Russell depicts the MCs of this story in the upper panel: two handsome young men, the one in the front is bearded and dressed casually and the one behind him is dressed in business attire with a stethoscope around his neck. The lower panel is a panorama of the Ellery Mountain area that ties this to the balance of the series.

Sales Links:  Amazon

Book Details:

ebook
Published 2018 by Love Lane Books Limited
Original TitleThe Sinner and the Saint
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesEllery Mountain #8

A Lila Review :Winter Cowboy by RJ Scott

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Rating: 3.75 stars out of 5

Micah Lennox left Whisper Ridge after promising the man he loved that he would never return. But the only way he knows to keep his pregnant sister and nephew safe is to go home. Spending winter in Wyoming opens too many old wounds, but he’s on the run from justice which can’t be far behind, and this is his last chance at redemption.

After a hostage situation leaves Doctor Daniel Sheridan struggling with PTSD, he returns to Whisper Ridge. Joining his dad in family practice is a balm to soothe his exhausted soul, and somehow, he finds a peace he can live with. That is until he meets Micah in a frozen graveyard, and the years of anger and feelings of betrayal boiling inside him, erupt.

Two broken men fight and scratch for their lives and that of their families, and somehow, in the middle of it all, they find each other.

Is it possible that love can be rekindled and become a forever to believe in?

Winter Cowboy is an interesting second chance story with too much happening off-page when the main characters were younger. It has a lot of drama, angst, and dark events–which also happened off-page.

The start is a bit confusing and it takes a moment to get into what’s happening. During this time, we get Micah’s version of the present events, mixed with the past. We learned a lot of what had happened to get him and his sister to this point. Also, their background and relationship with the family members that raised them.

I did enjoy Daniel’s characterization and how easy it was to feel what was happening to him; his fears, PTSD, and his confusion. How the two main events in his life turned into one leaving him with the need to escape and find solitude.

The combination of Micah and Daniel is explosive and passionate. They both have their flaws and at the same time, they bring hope to each other. This book is more about relationships, family, and forgiveness than love but all together makes an enjoyable read.

The cover by Meredith Russell is generic enough to fit the story but it doesn’t present anything about it. Just pretty to call the reader’s attention.

Sale Links: Love LaneAmazon | NOOK

ebook, 242 pages
Published: February 25, 2018, by Love Lane Books Ltd.
ISBN: 9781785641114
Edition Language: English

Series: Whisper Ridge, Wyoming
Book #1: Winter Cowboy

Review Tour for Winter Cowboy (Whisper Ridge, Wyoming #1) by R.J. Scott (excerpt and giveaway)

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Length: 70,000 words approx.
 
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
 
Blurb
 

Micah Lennox left Whisper Ridge after promising the man he loved that he would never return. But the only way he knows to keep his pregnant sister and nephew safe is to go home. Spending winter in Wyoming opens too many old wounds, but he’s on the run from justice which can’t be far behind, and this is his last chance at redemption.


After a hostage situation leaves Doctor Daniel Sheridan struggling with PTSD, he returns to Whisper Ridge. Joining his dad in family practice is a balm to soothe his exhausted soul, and somehow, he finds a peace he can live with. That is until he meets Micah in a frozen graveyard, and the years of anger and feelings of betrayal boiling inside him, erupt.


Two broken men fight and scratch for their lives and that of their families, and somehow, in the middle of it all, they find each other.


Is it possible that love can be rekindled and become a forever to believe in?




Feb 28 – Oh My Shelves, Annette Gisby, My Fiction Nook, The Blogger Girls
March 2 – Alpha’s Do It Better, Bookaholic & Kindle
March 5 – Urban Smoothie Read, Gay Media Review
March 7 – BFD Book Blog, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, MM Good Book Reviews, Nerdy Dirty & Flirty
March 9 – Making It Happen, The Geekery Book Review, Wicked Reads, Slave To The Written Word
March 12 – Sexy Erotic Xciting, Reading In Sarah’s Corner, Book Lovers 4Ever, Jim’s Reading Room, Wicked Faerie’s Tales & Reviews
March 14 – Xtreme Delusions, Drops Of Ink
March 15 – Hearts On Fire Reviews
March 16 – Valerie Ullmer, Mirrigold, Padme’s Library, A Book Lover’s Dream, Bayou Book Junkie

 

Excerpt
 

Chapter 1

2009, Daniel


A figure stood beside Isaac’s grave and I knew immediately who it was.


There was no marker yet for the boy who had died two weeks ago and who would forever be nineteen. Flowers marked his resting place, but snow had long since covered them and softened the raised earth so it wasn’t as obvious against the gravestones around the figure. A car accident had taken Isaac, killed him on impact, and his family grieved for a future that would never be realized.


I’d just left my brother, Chris, in the hospital, broken beyond repair in the same accident. At least we had the possibility of a future with him, even though the road to recovery would be hard. He was still in a medically induced coma, not yet awake to know he’d lost his leg, or that fire had marked his face. But he would wake up. They told us he’d live.


No one had asked me where I was going when I’d left Chris’ room, each of us lost in various stages of shock and grief, and we all dealt with what had happened in our own way. I’d needed to connect with Isaac. Needed the peace to balance the loss and guilt that ate away inside me.


Isaac dead on impact, Chris’ future destroyed, and in front of me, hunched over Isaac’s last resting place, was the man responsible for it all.


The man who left my bed in the dead of night to become a murderer.


Micah.


He was huddled into his coat, the January ice bitter by the buried, hands forced into his pockets, and his hood pulled around his face. Micah must have heard me, because he glanced my way, startled, grief written on his face. And then his expression changed.


He stepped toward me, his expression full of something like hope.


“Daniel?” he said. “Is Chris okay? No one will let me see him.”


He stopped walking when I didn’t reach out for him and looked at me uncertainly.


“His leg is gone, down from his knee,” I explained dispassionately, and then touched my face, “and his burns are bad, the left side of his face from his temple to his chin.”


“Shit. Shit.” Micah bent at the waist, as if he couldn’t breathe, and he was crying.


“How is it you don’t have a mark on you?” I asked, still eerily calm, and utterly focused.


He took his hand from his pocket, and pulled up his sleeve, exposing bandages. “I was burned,” he began. He dropped his hand when I didn’t comment, forced it back into his pocket, wincing as he did so.


I imagined the burn hurt a little, maybe even a lot, but he was there, as whole and real as when he’d left my bed on that terrible day.


In my mind I saw Chris in the hospital, the covers raised over the cage which protected his surgical site, then dipping lower where his ankle should have been. I saw a clear image of Isaac the day before he died, knocking for Chris and grinning at me as if he had the greatest secret to tell his best friend.


And here was Micah, telling me he had slight burns on his arm? The same man who’d told me in one breath that he loved me and then had stolen my car, driving it into a bridge and killing one boy, leaving another maimed and in a coma.


My fist flew, clenched aggression targeting Micah’s face, his cheekbone, and I heard a satisfying crunch. He staggered back a step, but he didn’t go down, and he didn’t take his hands from his pockets. I was too fast. I hit him again, blood flecking his face, dissipating into the icy air. He moved again, the force of my blows shoving him back.


Still, his hands remained in his pockets, and he was unnervingly quiet, taking my hits as if they were nothing at all. Another punch connected with his lip and split the skin, and this time he grunted in pain. He staggered backward toward the next grave and bent back over the stone marker with the force of that final blow. I stepped closer. I hit him again, connecting with his jaw, but the hit wasn’t hard. There was nothing to it; he didn’t move away.


“You took my car,” I yelled, right in his face.


“You said I could borrow it,” he pleaded.


I raised my hand to hit him again, but he winced, and closed his eyes, and I wanted him to look at me. “Open your damn eyes!”


He did, and he wouldn’t avert his gaze, naked grief in his expression.


“Daniel, please listen.”


“You’ve destroyed Chris’ life.”


“I know.”


“You need to leave Whisper Ridge, and never come back. I don’t want to see your face, I don’t want Chris to ever see you again. You understand?”


“I understand,” his tone low and broken.


“You will never come back here.” I shook him. He was smaller than me, thinner, lighter, and I shook him so hard his head snapped back. “Promise me!”


“I pr—promise,” he said through tears.


I was disgusted by him, hated him, wanted to kill him right there on Isaac’s grave.


“I hope they lock you up and throw away the fucking key!” I was still shouting, and he didn’t move, just stared at me with those pale eyes, red and wet from crying. He wouldn’t stop crying. “Don’t fucking stare at me!”


I shoved him one last time, and then before I could work out what the hell I was still doing there shouting at him, I pivoted and turned my back on him, and on Isaac’s grave, and the entire carnage.

RJ’s goal is to write stories with a heart of romance, a troubled road to reach happiness, and most importantly, that hint of a happily ever after.


RJ Scott is the bestselling author of over one hundred romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn’t with family either reading or writing.


The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit, and she has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.


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