Check Out the Release Blitz for Powder Burns (Shatterproof Bond #5) by Isobel Starling

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POWDER BURNS by Isobel Starling

Series: Shatterproof Bond #5

Publisher: Decent Fellows Press

Release Date (Print & Ebook): 4th October 2019

Length (Print & Ebook): 102,000 words, approx 570 pages

Subgenre: M/M Romance Thriller

Warnings: Mild BDSM

Buy it now: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07XP9PMR7

 

 

Book blurb:

One book, Two Missions, and a memory-key full of secrets!

After a series of terrorist attacks on fracking sites owned by a Gas multinational named Drilsink, Sir James Aiken’s agency is bought in to find the radical Eco-terrorist group responsible. He sends Sam and Declan to work undercover at Imperial College where Intel suggests the group are recruiting. While Sam works behind the scenes, Declan takes on the identity of Geologist Dr. Tobias Hunter and soon makes an enemy of a fellow science geek- a man who Declan comes to despise more than Sir James Aiken!

When the operation moves from London to Munich and then Vienna, Sam, and Declan are thrown headlong into a spy scenario straight out of the thriller novels they love to read—but with a distinct and disturbing sexual twist! Sam meets an old friend and uncovers shocking information about James’ past.

With Erik Madsson still imprisoned inside the A.L.L. HQ, James comes to realize that he should have listened to his son. Keeping the enemy inside his own home is about to be the biggest mistake he has ever made.

Release Blitz Teaser :

“Can ye not give me anything?  No’ even a wee clue?”  Declan hollered as Sam continued flitting around the apartment collecting his possessions.

“Will it be dangerous?  Will ye need a weapon?  God’s I don’t even know which country you’ll be in.”  Declan mother-henned.

Sam looked up from his task and met Declan’s worried gaze.  There was still so much about Sam’s work life that he was not permitted to share.  His gut coiled like a spring as he’d observed Declan pacing up and down in front of the apartment door like a guard dog, growling anxiously every time Sam made a move toward it with another item for his bag. 

“Look,” Sam’s shoulders sagged.  “I’m allowed to tell you that I’ll be in the UK, and I’m gathering Intel.”  Sam conceded. 

“I will be armed—with my natural wit and derring-do!”  He joked, wagging his brows to try and make light of the difficult situation. 

About the author:

Isobel Starling spent most of her twenty-year professional career making art in Ireland.  She relocated to the UK and, faced with the dreaded artist’s creative block, Isobel started to write in 2014 and found she loved writing more than making art.

Isobel is currently working on her twentieth book.  Most of her titles are also available in German, French, Italian, and soon, Spanish.

“As You Wish” (Shatterproof Bond#1) narrated by Gary Furlong won the Independent Audiobook Award for Romance 2018. It is the first M/M Romance audiobook to win a mainstream audiobook award. “Sweet Thing” was nominated for the Independent Audiobook Award LGBTQI Audiobook 2019.

Connect with Isobel Starling:

Twitter: @isobel_starling

Instagram: @Isobel_starling

Goodreads:https://www.goodreads.com/isobel_starling

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Isobel-Starling/e/B00U1MKE5I

Sign up for Isobel’s newsletter at https://isobelstarling.wix.com/books

 

Giveaway: Readers, join us as we celebrate the release of POWDER BURNS with a giveaway! Prizes include: 1) Shatterproof Bond Art Zine. This limited edition glossy zine features artwork of the main characters, Sam and Declan, by a host of artists the author commissioned, and art by the author herself. 2) 1 set of audio codes of books 1 – 4 in the Shatterproof Bond series! 

Direct Giveaway Link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/88d45f03108/

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Love to Listen to Your Books? Check out the Audio Tour for A Dance for You by Colette Davison and Narrator Neil McFarlane

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AUDIOBOOK REVIEW TOUR

Book Title: A Dance for You

Author: Colette Davison

Publisher: Colette Davison

Narrator: Neil McFarlane

Release Date: February 5, 2019

Genre/s: Contemporary Gay Romance

Heat Rating: 4 flames

Length:  6 hours 4 minutes

 It’s the second of a pair of ballet-based books, but can be read as a standalone.

Add on Goodreads

 

Tagline

Can David help Mason dance, like he’s never danced before?

Blurb

New job, new city: Mason hopes both will lead to him escaping burnout as a ballet dancer. Not living out of a suitcase anymore is a bonus. His new life gets off to a steamy start when he encounters his new neighbour, David. Things soon become complicated when Mason turns up for his first day at BalletEast, to discover that David is not only his choreographer, but the man who inspired him to take up dancing in the first place.

With two divorces and a string of failed relationships behind him, David has no intention of promising ‘forever’ to anyone. But when he meets Mason, he falls hard and fast for the enigmatic young dancer. As David becomes more serious about Mason, he wants to open his lover’s eyes to the kinks that he enjoys.

Whilst the two men are navigating the early stages of their romance, Mason is facing immense pressures in the rehearsal studios that threaten to dampen his natural enthusiasm for life. Will David’s love and support be enough to help Mason continue to hold his head high and dance like he’s never danced before?

**Contains explicit language and sex scenes, including mild, consensual BDSM**

 

Buy Links (Bounty Links)

Audible US

Audible UK

Audible FR

Audible DE

Amazon US

Amazon UK

 

About the Author

Colette’s personal love story began at university, where she met her future husband. An evening of flirting, in the shadow of Lancaster castle, eventually led to a fairy-tale wedding. She’s enjoying her own ‘happy ever after’ in the north of England with her husband, two beautiful children and her writing.

 

Author Links

Blog/Website

Facebook

Twitter

Facebook Group: Colette’s Cosy Corner

Bookbub

Goodreads

Instagram: colettedavison

Mailing List

 

 

AUDIOBOOK REVIEW TOUR SCHEDULE

 

Hosted by Gay Book Promotions

Release Blitz for Cold Like Snow by Sita Bethel (excerpt and giveaway)

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Title: Cold Like Snow

Author: Sita Bethel

Publisher: NineStar Press

Release Date: July 23, 2018

Heat Level: 4 – Lots of Sex

Pairing: Male/Male, Male/Male Menage

Length: 65400

Genre: Paranormal, paranormal, ghosts, established couple, musicians, mild BDSM, ménage

Add to Goodreads

Synopsis

When René moves into his new home, he didn’t expect it to come with roommates. Two handsome roommates, to be precise. Too bad they’re ghosts.

The fact that they’re dead doesn’t stop them from running their fingers through René’s hair or tackling him onto the bed. It’s not long before things escalate and René finds himself with two ghost lovers that treat him better than any living partner ever has.

However, they can’t eat, can’t go far from the house where they died, and their fingers feel like icicles against René’s skin. The longer René is with them, the more he can sense them, but nothing can reduce the chill of their bodies against his. Still, it might be worth the hypothermia.

Excerpt

Cold Like Snow
Sita Bethel © 2018
All Rights Reserved

Chapter One
René stood in front of the doorway and ran his finger over the outline of the key’s metallic surface before wedging it into the lock and stepping inside his new house. The cold air puckered the skin of his arms and neck. He rubbed his shoulders to keep them warm as he looked around. The flooring throughout the house was black-and-white linoleum. A wide living area faced him—to his left was a fireplace, straight ahead stood double glass doors leading to a small garden, and to his right a half bathroom, dining area, and kitchen. Between the dining room and the glass door, a staircase with a thick cherrywood banister curved up to the three bedrooms and a full bathroom.

René walked to the staircase and stopped short of the first step. He examined the black-and-white squares. They looked clean at first glance, but since he was searching, René noticed the thin rust-colored lines between the tiles. It was why he had bought the house. He’d heard the two previous owners had died after falling down the stairs. Afterward, the old building fell victim to exaggerated ghost stories. True, it did make the building more affordable, but the real reason it appealed to René was because he loved ghost stories and all things macabre. Ever since he was a child, tales that made others grimace had made René smile. He squatted to the floor and reached out to graze his fingertips against the tiles.

A long sigh escaped from between René’s lips. He stood and headed to his moving truck. After several hours of carrying boxes in, he decided to save the larger furniture for the next day. René lit a fire; orange light crawled across the floor and walls. He unrolled his sleeping bag near the hearth and slipped inside. The old house creaked. The silence in the house amplified every other noise, which echoed like a lullaby and soothed René into a hard sleep.

At dawn, before René was fully awake, he dreamed someone dragged their fingers through his hair. He rolled on his side, muttering, “It’s too cold to get up.” The next time he opened his eyes, sunlight brightened the room through the garden doors. He sat up, rubbed his face, and remembered the odd dream of being petted. He smiled at the dream as he stretched and moaned. René slipped out of the sleeping bag and shuffled toward the kitchen to make coffee.

The day labored on as René set upon the tedious mission of dragging his furniture inside his house by himself. Most items—the bed, the office desk, his baker’s rack—he had dissembled before loading into the rental truck, but a few pieces—the washer, dryer, and sofa—he had to strap to a dolly with bungee cords, making it slow to get them inside the house. There was nothing better to do during the constant back and forth than think. He’d spent most of his thirty-four years of existence rushing past his own life. He’d sped through junior high and high school as fast as he could, desperate to get away from the small-minded town where his aunt and uncle had raised him after his parents died of heat exhaustion during a camping trip. After he graduated, René fled to the nearest city, waiting tables to scrape up enough cash for a small apartment while he earned his associate degree. He jumped into a relationship with the first guy who openly pursued him, infatuated by the bold, flirtatious attitude that René never experienced from any of the guys back home. Even after his heart broke, René hurried straight to the next boyfriend, who ended up being much worse than the first.

He learned his lesson after that one, sticking to casual hookups as he focused on work and his studies. Once he finished school, René was desperate to find a job where he could afford more than ramen noodles and dollar-store socks. Now he was at a point in his life where he wanted nothing more than to appreciate everything he obtained and accomplished over the years. He escaped the small town. He made enough money to pay his bills. He finally bought a house. René wanted a chance to breathe and enjoy it. Perhaps find a decent partner who wanted to settle down, or at least get a dog.

He went through an entire box of granola bars and a pot of coffee before he decided to go to the store for groceries.

When he returned, René made a sandwich for lunch and then continued to set everything in order. By the end of the day, each stack of boxes sat in the correct room and the furniture was more or less placed where he intended to keep it. Too exhausted to assemble the bed, René spent another night in his sleeping bag near the fireplace, feeling like a strange post-modern male Cinderella.

In the early gray dawn, he had the same dream. Fingers, barely felt, ran through his hair and gingerly touched his cheeks and collarbone. René exhaled with content at the soft, misty caresses, and he wished ghosts were real before sinking into a deeper sleep.

In the morning, he started unpacking in the kitchen until he found the toaster and a skillet. After eating breakfast and unpacking the kitchen, he assembled the bed. Two nights on the floor had his shoulders stiff. René cursed as he balanced the sideboard of his bed frame in his lap and worked the first screw in one turn at a time. For the cost of a six-pack of beer and some pizza, May would have been more than happy to help René both move his furniture and set up the bed, but René relied on his best friend too much already. The next time May visited, René wanted to go out and have fun, not unpack a mountain of boxes, so he finished tightening the first screw and wondered where his bag of extras had disappeared. René groaned when he saw them on the other side of the room. He would have sworn he’d set them beside his lap when he started, but apparently he hadn’t. By the time he pushed the box spring and mattress onto the completed frame, René was worn out. He dropped onto the bed and made snow angel motions with his arms and legs before resting.

“Forget unpacking. I should just go to sleep,” René spoke to the bed, having no one else to talk to.

His muscles ached from carrying boxes and furniture, and the bed was firm but soft enough for him to sink a little. René shut his eyes and pulled a deep, intentional breath into his lungs. Daydreams played out behind his closed eyelids. It’d been awhile since anyone else had been in his bed with him, and he imagined a mystery lover sneaking to his bedside, sitting beside him, and kissing his stomach as he unzipped René’s pants. His fantasy spun out of control. The mattress felt like it really did shift with the weight of another person sitting close. René sat up and shook his head to rid himself of the ridiculous daydream. He made the bed before going downstairs to finish unpacking the living room.

By the third night, the house resembled a home. René examined his progress in the living room and nodded his head in satisfaction. As he stood in place, René’s hair slid against his shoulders, as if someone had brushed the long strands away from his face. He froze a moment, wondering if his imagination played tricks with his mind again, but the distinct pressure of a hand lighted on his shoulder and fingers ran down his cheek. He blinked, trying to process the strange sensation of being touched by invisible hands.

“Hello.” René’s voice sounded loud in the visibly empty living room.

The touching stopped after he spoke.

“Wait, don’t leave,” René said, afraid he’d somehow startled whatever had interacted with him. René’s gaze darted across the living room, searching for any indication that he wasn’t alone. Nothing was out of place. René sighed, his shoulders slumping forward. “I didn’t imagine that,” he whispered, to convince himself he hadn’t daydreamed the experience.

An idea drifted into René’s head. He spoke to the air in a bashful tone. “If you can hear me, would you follow me. Please?”

He walked up the stairs and opened the door to his office. Stacks of boxes lined the walls and surrounded the desk like strange cardboard obelisks. René pilfered through the boxes until he found one labeled office odds and ends.

He pulled the tape from the top of the box and set aside small statues of gargoyles, skeletons, and imps. With both hands, René removed the old Ouija board from the cardboard box. He’d never used it before and only owned it for the aesthetic, but now he sat on the tiled floor with the board in his lap and the heart-shaped planchette under his fingertips.

“I know this is dumb,” he said. “I know this is a stupid toy, but why not use it? Crap, I hope I’m not talking to myself. I just want to—” A breath hitched in René’s throat as the planchette scrawled across the wooden surface of the board.

“Oh good! I was hoping you’d want to talk. Hold on. Let me get a pen.” René rummaged through another box until he found a pack of pens and a notebook. He held the paper in his lap so he could write down the letters. “What’s your name?” René asked, but to his disappointment, the planchette only swerved in between the yes and no options at the top of the board. He frowned, thinking of what he might be doing wrong. Another question came to mind. “How many of you are here?”

The pointer swerved to the number two on the board.

“What are your names?” The planchette moved without him touching it, freeing up his hands to write each letter.

Marcus.

Bastion.

“Really?” René raised an eyebrow. It was a rhetorical question, but the heart planchette spelled another sentence.

“You have a problem with our names?”

“No.” René smiled. “My name’s Rembrandt. Our mothers should be slapped. Call me René, though.” A nervous chuckle slipped past René’s lips. “Not that I can hear you say my name.”

Purchase

NineStar Press | Amazon | Smashwords | Barnes & Noble

Meet the Author

Sita Bethel obtained a B.A. in Creative Writing at Arkansas Tech University; however, she learned how to write fiction on sites such as Archive Of Our Own and fanfiction.net. She keeps coloring books near her computer for when she’s “writing,” and owns an awful lot of dice for someone who’s never played a tabletop RPG. Sita Bethel currently lives in Arkansas, teaches Zumba Fitness and Salsaton classes at a local gym, and hopes to someday own a fortress of solitude staffed with incompetent henchmen.

Facebook | Twitter

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Tour and Giveaway for Runner (The Runner #1) by Karma Kingsley (special excerpt)

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Title:  Runner

Series: The Runner, Book One

Author: Karma Kingsley

Publisher:  NineStar Press

Release Date: August 21

Heat Level: 3 – Some Sex

Pairing: Male/Male

Length: 79300

Genre: Contemporary, age gap, celebrities, hurt/comfort, interracial, mild BDSM, movie industry, spanking, toys

Add to Goodreads

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host the tour and giveaway for Runner (The Runner #1) by Karma Kingsley.  Be sure to check out the exclusive excerpt below!

Synopsis

Alex Banez is a runner for a Los Angeles film set. When he has a chance encounter with executive producer Atwell Richards, he finds himself falling fast and hard. Atwell is rich, powerful, gorgeous, and everything Alex never thought he would have. But Atwell also has a dark side and an inflexible need for control that threatens to suffocate everyone around him.

Alex has to figure out if he can love Atwell without losing himself.

Exclusive Excerpt

Runner
Karma Kingsley © 2017
All Rights Reserved

By the time Alex finished work, Atwell had already claimed him in his mind. He had absolutely taken possession of him and dared anyone to challenge him about it. He waited in the parking lot for him, coolly positioned against his car. He loved the hot, crisp LA air and it soothed his clamoring nerves.

“Hey,” he called out as Alex approached.

“Hey.” Alex dropped his eyes, still avoiding his gaze, and Atwell hated how devastated that made him feel.

Atwell swallowed down the lump of hurt in his throat and moved to open the passenger door of his sleek, dark blue sports car. He was feeling like he needed raw power beneath him, so he’d traded out his day car. “Come on. Get in. We’ll talk at my place.” He held the door open and waited for Alex to climb in. He gaped in confusion when Alex walked past him, shaking his head.

“I can’t. I’ve got my bike,” he said, heading for the bike rack.

“So leave it. I’ll take you home.”

Alex finally looked up at him and Atwell couldn’t decide which he liked less, when he looked at him with those beautiful green eyes clouded over with darkness or when he avoided looking at him altogether.

“I can’t.” He shook his head again. “I can’t afford to keep Uber-ing to work in the mornings.”

“Okay. So you’ll stay over.”

“Atwell.”

“Or I’ll send a car for you. Whatever you want, but I thought you wanted to talk.”

Alex let out a sigh. “I did—I do. I want to be with you, Atwell.” Atwell’s heart soared at hearing the claim. “But I don’t want to feel like your prostitute, or your charity case, or your project. I can take care of myself, so you don’t have to worry about it.”

Atwell closed the passenger door of his car with a slam. His high from hearing that Alex wanted to be with him was quickly diminished by the fact that he thought he was considering him as some sort of toy, or some pay-as-you-go sex doll. “Alex, I don’t think of you as any of those things, but the fact of it is, I am a wealthy man. And while I have no doubts that you are perfectly capable of taking care of yourself, I want to take care of you. I’ve watched you take care of everyone around you, except for you. Let me do that. I need to do that.”

Alex dropped his eyes again, but Atwell caught a glimpse of some of the clouds clearing. Alex squirmed. “I don’t want our relationship to be public. Aside from the drama it would cause at work, I don’t want to be an item on the news.” He shifted uncomfortably. “There are things in my past that I’d just rather not have surface for the world to see.”

Atwell nodded in understanding. “Well, I am a public figure but I’ll do what I can to keep a lid on the media. But I’ve told you before, I won’t be ashamed to be with you. If we’re out in public and I want to touch you, I reserve the right to do so. And I have a feeling I’ll be wanting to touch you quite often.”

Alex flushed and said nothing.

“Anything else?” Atwell asked.

“Does it matter? It seems all my conditions are irrelevant. You’re not a very flexible man.”

“Shit,” Atwell cursed at himself. He’d meant to be much more bending, much more accommodating to Alex’s need—at least at first. But now he’d let all his true colors flare, shooting him down at every turn.

Alex shook his head and moved closer to him, meeting his gaze and sending Atwell into a frenzy with the brightness of his eyes. “Atwell, it’s okay. I still want to do this.” Atwell’s heart jumped in his chest, racing faster as Alex moved in even closer. “And you told me to tell you when I wanted you.” Alex’s chest rose and fell in rapid succession and Atwell realized so did his own. The air between them was electric, stinging every single one of his nerve endings. He’d never felt so alive and buzzing in his life. He nodded his head, not trusting his voice. “Well, Atwell, I think if you don’t kiss me, I may die.”

 

Purchase

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

Meet the Author

Karma is a wine-enthusiast, feminist, activist, humanitarian, vegetarian and just all around liberal and that often seeps into her writing. She loves any place with white, white sand and blue, blue water and an endless supply of prefix-mo drinks (Moscato, Mojito, etc.).

 Twitter | eMail

Tour Schedule

8/21    Love Bytes Reviews

8/22    Erotica For All

8/22    Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews

8/23    The Novel Approach

8/23    Boy Meets Boy Reviews

8/23    Happily Ever Chapter

8/24    Bayou Book Junkie

8/25    Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

8/25    MM Good Book Reviews

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A MelanieM Review: Champagne Kisses by Lynda Aicher

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Champagne KissesThe Christmas Eve wedding Evan Cleary pulled together in four weeks is crashing down around him and taking his fledgling event planning business with it. With an empty altar and over a hundred guests arriving soon, he turns to the resistant, gorgeous brother of the runaway groom for help.

When Richard Patterson’s flamboyant brother storms out hours before he’s scheduled to marry his equally dramatic partner, Richard is left dealing with the fallout. The last thing he wants is more drama, yet he can’t deny his attraction to the effeminate event planner trying to salvage the wedding.

Evan thinks his crush on Richard is a lost cause, but one steaming kiss later, he learns different. What starts as a night of hot sex turns into a connection neither expected. But Evan knows their relationship is hopeless unless the ultra-conservative Richard can embrace every part of him—both in private and in public.

Short, sweet and sexy, this Christmas novella is the very definition of  opposites attract. Lynda Aicher starts off on one side of the spectrum with Evan Cleary. Flamboyant, some would say delicate to the point of being effeminate, Evan has worked hard on this Christmas Eve wedding which was to launch his event planning business…even though it had disaster written all over it, starting with the couple in question.

His opposite is Richard Patterson, masculine, solid, gorgeous, someone who has never been attracted before to someone of Evan’s “type”, until now, an attitude that doesn’t sit especially well with Evan.  It’s a night of emotional meltdowns, harsh attitudes, and revelations set amidst a wedding that  anyone would call the wedding of your dreams.  Aicher has described it in detail and I’m sure more than one reader sighed in response.

I liked the clash of personalities which included that of Richard’s  brother and Evan, which had a friendship here too.  There is a bit of hot domination play here and enough drama to satisfy those who need it in their relationship stories.  All in all a satisfying sexy romp.

My only issues?  Some very iffy word choices, a very big no if you are at all familiar with my reviews.  Two words that should never appear with regard to the male anatomy…canal and channel.   And they both appear here.  I just start waiting for the tugboats to appear.  Or river barges or things of that nature.  It almost got this story knocked down to a 3 star but no, the rest of it was charming. When they appear, close your eyes and move swiftly past.  Other than that, this story is a keeper.

Cover art by L.C. Chase is nice but doesn’t have enough details to make it stand out from any other cover.

Sales Links:   Riptide Publishing | ARe | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 83 pages
Published December 14th 2015 by Riptide Publishing
Original TitleChampagne Kisses
ISBN139781626493759
Edition LanguageEnglish
URL

A Stella Review: Rough Road (Lake Lovelace #2) by Vanessa North

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Rating: 4.25 stars out of 5

Rough Road coverEddie Russell is many things: A wealthy pillar of the community. An outrageous flirt. A doting best friend. A masochist with a kink for brawling with his bedmates. But he is definitely not a man who invites intimacy. His friends are close but few, his lovers rarer still.

When Eddie runs his Mercedes off the road on a hot July afternoon, Wish Carver comes to his aid—and leaves his number in Eddie’s phone. Wish, a road crew worker half Eddie’s age and sexy as sin, seems fascinated by Eddie’s different sides. Mutual attraction and compatible kinks ignite the sheets, but it’s their connection outside the bedroom that Eddie begins to crave.

When the two come down on opposite sides of a local issue, Eddie finds his growing feelings for Wish at odds with his business interests and his devotion to his best friend, local wakeboarding legend Ben Warren. Torn between old loyalties and his new love, Eddie is reluctant to make a choice. But he knows he can’t make Wish wait too long to make up his mind.

Rough Road was my first book by Vanessa North. It’s part of the Lake Lovelace series but if you haven’t read the first one yet, Double Up, don’t worry. It can be easily read as a standalone. Still I was so nicely surprised by Rough Road that I’m going to come back to the first one soon. I’m so curious about Ben and Davis story.

This book was really really good, there wasn’t one thing I didn’t like, on the contrary. I’m a huge fan of characters with an age gap between them and with some kink elements or light BDSM. So from the blurb Rough Road had the potential to be a winner and I wasn’t disappointed at all. the age gap was an important one but not so evident cause Wish (*swooning over him*) was more mature for his years, he was sure of himself and what he wanted or better who he wanted. I particularly liked the MCs, Eddie was hilarious, too many times over the top but that’s why I loved it so much. He and Wish hit it off from the first time they laid eyes on each other and I can guarantee the chemistry came out from the pages in waves. I rushed into their story cause I was engaged by the scenes and the dialogues.

Their relationship was hot and sweet and just what I was in the mood for. I think you can’t go wrong picking this book, it was wonderful, light and quick. It was well written and I enjoyed the little but important hitches the author put in front of the MCs, they gave depth and reality to a story that could have been too simple to be loved so much. I liked the author’s style, she was so good she was able to make me like a story written in the first person using the present tense. I usually have a hard time with these choice but not in this case, I honestly noticed it on the second chapter. I think she did great and I can’t wait to read more by her. Highly recommended!

Cover art by LC Chase. The cover is nothing special to me and that’s probably why it caught my attention but it fits the book.

Sales Links:   Riptide Publishing |  All Romance (ARe) | Smashwords | Amazon | Buy It Here

BOOK DETAILS

ebook, 185 pages
Expected publication: September 28th 2015 by Riptide Publishing
ISBN 1626492980
Edition Language English

Series Lake Lovelace
Double Up #1
Rough Road #2

 

Return to Lake Lovelace with Rough Road by Vanessa North (contest)

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Rough Road cover

Rough Road (Lake Lovelace #2)
by Vanessa North

Published by Riptide Publishing
Cover Art by L. C. Chase

Series: Lake Lovelace

Sales Link:  Riptide Publishing Rough Road Page

RoughRoad_TourBanner

Hi, Welcome to the Rough Road Blog Tour!

I’m Vanessa North, and I’ll be sharing some of my thoughts throughout the week on writing the second book in the Lake Lovelace series, Rough Road. Join the conversation by commenting on the posts and you’ll be entered in the drawing for a $25 Riptide Publishing gift certificate. Thanks for reading!

You can find all of the Rough Road tour stops at http://riptidepublishing.com/titles/rough-road

Blurb

Eddie Russell is many things: A wealthy pillar of the community. An outrageous flirt. A doting best friend. A masochist with a kink for brawling with his bedmates. But he is definitely not a man who invites intimacy. His friends are close but few, his lovers rarer still.

When Eddie runs his Mercedes off the road on a hot July afternoon, Wish Carver comes to his aid—and leaves his number in Eddie’s phone. Wish, a road crew worker half Eddie’s age and sexy as sin, seems fascinated by Eddie’s different sides. Mutual attraction and compatible kinks ignite the sheets, but it’s their connection outside the bedroom that Eddie begins to crave.

When the two come down on opposite sides of a local issue, Eddie finds his growing feelings for Wish at odds with his business interests and his devotion to his best friend, local wakeboarding legend Ben Warren. Torn between old loyalties and his new love, Eddie is reluctant to make a choice. But he knows he can’t make Wish wait too long to make up his mind.

About the Author

Author of over a dozen novels, novellas, and short stories, Vanessa North delights in giving happy-ever-afters to characters who don’t think they deserve them. Relentless curiosity led her to take up knitting and run a few marathons “just to see if she could.” She started writing for the same reason. Her very patient husband pretends not to notice when her hobbies take over the house. Living and writing in Northwest Georgia, she finds her attempts to keep a quiet home are frequently thwarted by twin boy-children and a very, very large dog.

Connect with Vanessa:

Website: vanessanorth.com
Facebook profile page: facebook.com/AuthorVanessaNorth
Twitter: @VanessaNWrites
Goodreads: goodreads.com/VanessaNorth

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Giveaway

Every comment on this blog tour enters you in a drawing for $25 in Riptide Publishing store credit. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on October 3rd. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Don’t forget to leave your email so we can contact you if you win!  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.

Lake Lovelace Series

Welcome to Lake Lovelace: a small town that’s big on charm!

Lake Lovelace is famous for its wakeboarding competitions and the local athletes who dominate it. Legends of the sport and stars of the future share the glory, and everyone celebrates. Whether on the water or around town, the men and women of Lake Lovelace collide, clash, and ultimately find love under the scorching Florida sun. – See more at: http://www.riptidepublishing.com/titles/universe/lake-lovelace#sthash.FcS4OefA.dpuf

– See more at: http://www.riptidepublishing.com/titles/universe/lake-lovelace#sthash.FcS4OefA.dpuf

Books in the series to date:

Double Up (Lake Lovelace #1) and Rough Road (Lake Lovelace #2) – see links to our reviews.

Double Up coverRough Road cover

 

Review: City Mouse (Country Mouse #2) by Amy Lane and Aleksandr Voinov

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Rating: 5 stars out of  5

City Mouse coverWhen Malcolm Kavanagh chased down Owen Watson in the middle of a train station and told Owen he loved him just as Owen was about to leave London, well that is the HEA moment always envisioned at the end of a romance novel.  But for Malcolm and Owen, life is what happens next.  For Malcolm, he is on new territory as he has never been in love or even a relationship before Owen.  Now Owen is living in his flat, and Malcolm doesn’t  really know how to handle things, even something as simple as eating breakfast together.

For Owen, Malcolm is the man he has come to love and stayed in London for.  Luckily for them both, Owen not only has experience with relationships, and a great Mom to ask advice from but Owen realizes that Malcolm has some growing to do and he is willing to help him through the precarious first steps of a serious relationship.  His mom said the biggest obstacle to overcome will be Relationship Armageddon, when you’ve reached the sixth week, the honeymoon phase is over, and reality sets in.  Owen has a new job, and patience, lots of patience.  But when the stress of Mal’s job combines with the strain of adjusting to a new relationship, will Owen’s patience and love be enough to help the couple struggle through  to a real HEA.

When I love a book the way I did Country Mouse, I always approach its sequel with a little trepidation, even with such wonderful writers as Amy Lane and Aleksandr Voinov at the helm.  You always wonder if the continuing story will measure up to the joy and outright affection you have for the original.  Well, I shouldn’t have worried, because the fates of Malcolm and Owen are in wonderful, capable hands and I might even love Malcolm’s story a tiny bit more.

Haven’t you always wondered what happens after boy gets girl or in this case boy gets boy in the romcoms in the theatre or on TV?  In City Mouse we get to see what happens after that wildly romantic gesture when Mal runs after Owen, catches up to him in the train station and declares his love for Owen.  Usually its “cue the music, close the curtains, The End” time but now we pick up the story two days after Malcolm’s declaration of love.  The boys are living together in Malcolm’s high end flat and Malcolm is getting ready to resume his routine, a routine that now must make  room for Owen in it.  And to say that Mal is extremely uneasy about the whole thing is putting it mildly.  This is how City Mouse opens, with Malcolm already in high stress mode:

The bad thing about a fictional Chinese prawns food poisoning was that it couldn’t possibly outlast a real one. Malcolm had done his research on the internet, and a real food poisoning would be over in a day or three. Another problem was that he felt guilty for having left the trading desk. He should be at work.

Oh, but Owen was so sweet in bed.

That’s where they’d gone right after the train station, where Malcolm (Malcolm!) had poured his bloody heart out and begged Owen not to leave. Bed. There would be time to hammer out the details later. Time to figure out jobs and schedules and Owen’s place in all of this? But Owen was here, in Malcolm’s penthouse, and that’s where they stayed for the next two days.

But today, he had to go to work.

Malcolm got out of the shower, shaved his maddening dark stubble carefully, and combed and gelled his hair until it would stay perfect for the rest of the day. He had one clean suit left, and the rest needed to be serviced. God . . . four days, five nights he’d spent playing. And now his life was falling apart.

Okay—that was a tad dramatic. But he did need to do some dry cleaning. And—

You can almost hear the hyperventilating begin….it’s funny, it’s realistic, and in its own way kind of heartbreaking.  I love the character of Malcolm.  He has so many mannerisms and attitudes built in to his personality that help to protect him from hurt and his past although he would be the last to admit it.  As written by Land and Voinov, Malcolm is a complex, flawed and, for me, wonderfully appealing character.  He so wants to be loved and for his relationship with Owen to work, if he could just figure out how to bring that about.  The authors make sure the reader sees Malcolm’s vulnerability even as he is spouting off nonsense about Owen’s less than chic address at work or the clothes that Owen wears.  Lane and Voinove make sure we see that there is a reason for Malcolm’s shallowness even if we don’t know just what propels it forward.  And the authors make us laugh while they are making Mal stress over something else that Owen has done.  Here is Malcolm meeting Owen at the coop he is working for.  Malcolm has entered the Happy Endings Little People’s Club adoption agency inhabiting the third level floor of the building:

Happy endings. Little people.

A world full of baby photos. Adorable infants. Blonde girls. Middle Eastern boys. Happy families. Kids cuddling teddy bears.

Would he make it to Owen before he developed diabetes?

“Hullo, luv,” said the matronly woman at the desk. She smiled up at him sunnily, revealing large teeth, slightly protuberant eyes, and a suit that dated back to the seventies. “Can I help you?”

He felt the beginnings of sugar shock just looking at all of that maternal goodwill.

“Uhm, I was looking for—” “Owen!” she crowed. “And you must be Malcolm. We’ve heard so much about you!” She pitched her voice to one of the hidden back rooms. “Owen, your boyfriend’s here. And you’re right. He does look like a snake that swallowed a lemon!”

Malcolm was shocked out of his irritation. “I do not.”

Owen’s throaty laughter emanated from the room, followed by Owen himself. “You do too, Mal, and you know it. Come on back. Thanks, Emmaline. I didn’t want to miss him.”“

Oh, I don’t think you could do that, dearie. He is very good looking, just like you said.”

Owen winked, his sweet brown eyes wicked under the fall of hair. “You don’t think I would have stayed here if he’d been homely, do you?”

I loved that interchange, it tells us so much about Malcolm and Owen.  Despite being out of his comfort zone, Malcolm has travelled into the *shudders* lower income region of the city just because he wants to see his lover. And Owen has already been filling in his new coworkers (and friends) on Malcolm, enough so that they recognize him before he introduces himself.  Lovely dialog, lovely and funny setting, and memorable characters all in one great scene.

Everything about City Mouse rings true, from the slow fumbling towards a real relationship that speaks of permanency to the authenticity of a tour through the many sections of London.  Owen and Malcolm do not have an easy time making their adjustments to their new status although Owen has more experience than Malcolm.  But Owen too has his own insecurities about his new situation.  A phone call or two to his Mom helps but only so much.  I do love his mother, she is such a great character of her own, she almost needs her own story.  But Owen never comes across as “too good to be true” to me.  He knows his limitations and Owen also realizes how much personal “loosening up” Mal needs to do before their relationship can grow.  Realistically, Owen hopes that it will happen but he is never quite sure that it will.  Again, a lovely testament to the writing skills of Lane and Voinov.  We believe in this relationship and the men involved because they are so real.  That “realness” makes it easy to engage the readers affections and keeps them connected throughout the story to the end.

City Mouse clocks in at 160 pages, almost twice the length of Country Mouse, and the longer story length was necessary to more accurately portray the relationship dynamics in play after the grand romantic gesture is done.  I don’t think a shorter version would have let us see into all of the problems and issues that had to be resolved before the boys could settle down realistically and happily in London together.  But time and type (and two wonderful authors) gave us exactly what Owen and Malcolm needed.  We get the joy and fun of watching two great endearing characters fight, cook and love their way to a more authentic relationship.  One that has a far better chance at succeeding than the point that we first left them at.  And that makes this book a real winner for me, and hopefully for you as well.

There are some scenes with a mild bdsm content.  Those readers uncomfortable with bdsm sex scenes should not have a problem with the content here.  It is mild and does contribute to some very hot love making between Owen and Malcolm.  Grab the fans, you will need them.

Pick up Country Mouse and City Mouse and have yourself a wonderful time.  Here are the books in the order they were written and should be read:

Country Mouse

City Mouse

Cover Art by Jordan Taylor. The cover is adorable although the model is not exactly what I would expect of Malcolm.

Book Details:

ebook, 160 pages
Published March 18th 2013 by Riptide Publishing
ISBN 9781626490 (ISBN13: 9781626490055)
edition languageEnglish
original titleCity Mouse
urlhttp://riptidepublishing.com/titles/city-mouse
seriesCountry Mouse #2
charactersMalcolm Kavanagh, Owen Watson
setting London, England

Review: Blacque/Bleu (Arcada #1) by Belinda McBride

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Blacque and Bleu coverRating: 5 stars

Lukas Blacque is a werewolf in a unique position.  A son of the alpha wolf, he prefers life lived on the fringes of the pack, removed from pack politics.  He has a college degree but prefers his car shop, bringing old vehicles back to life as well as performing normal maintenance.  Another surprising element is that he is lonely for a shifter with a pack, but he has a secret.  Lukas Blacque is gay and deeply in the closet and so for that his lifestyle works as long as no one looks too closely.  There is one person who has caught his interest but the  danger factor is too high for him to act on it, and that would be his neighboring vampire in the shop next to his.  But he refuses to act until one night when his father decides to change everything and Lukas’ life is upturned.

Oliver Bleu is a vampire plagued by nightmares from his time on the front in WWI, nightmares which keep him from sleeping and replenishing his strength.  Now he finds himself slowly fading away, even his hunts don’t quench his hunger.  But then there is his neighbor next door to Oliver’s shop.  Oliver knows he is more than attracted to the shifter, Lukas’ blood might be able to bring him back to strength.  The walls between their businesses are thin and he hears the family arguments going on next door when Lukas’ father arrives for a meeting with his son.  When Oliver goes to check on Lukas, their encounter turns into a passionate weekend neither can forget nor wants too as lust turns into love.

But Lukas has made a commitment to his father and his pack, and is determined to honor it even if it breaks his heart and Oliver’s as well.  Lucky for both shifter and vampire, they live in a very special town who  looks after her citizens,  And when evil from Oliver’s past follows him to Arcada, things are set in motion that will have lasting impact on all around, including Lukas and Oliver.

I just loved this book.  It is the first book by Belinda McBride and it puts her on my must have list immediately.  From the start she gives her characters a marvelous world in which to inhabit, the town of Arcada.  The town is sentient and although we don’t know how that happened, her affection for the diverse citizenry reveals itself in a myriad of ways.  Perhaps she makes it impossible for them to leave or her protection manifests itself in prodding others to act in ways that benefits others.  No matter, Arcada is a benign and loving presence and this leaves us just dying to know more about the town and its diverse community of  humans, vampires, shifters, fae and so many others that we are given brief glimpses of.

But the heart of the story is McBride’s characters, Lukas Blacque and Oliver Bleu, a terrific play on words that fits in beautifully in their interactions with each other.  Lukas Blacque is a complex giant of a man, gentle of spirit, lonely and sad because as much as he wants to be a part of his pack due to his wolf nature, the fact that he is gay keeps him separated and aloof.  He is such a lovely creation that we connect to him immediately and we can empathize with him at this point  in his life.  Then we meet Oliver Bleu, in many ways the anthesis of the vampires we have meet in other novels.  Far from the powerful, immortal beings we have come to expect, Oliver Bleu is a victim, struggling to survive.  In a horrific element of the story, we learn that Oliver died from mustard gas in the trenches at the front.  If you were not familiar with the horrors of WWI before, by the time you learn how Oliver was affected, the true evil that man can create in the name of war will be brought home in gritty, pus filled painful authenticity.  Sometimes the horror of the paranormal universe has nothing on the real one we already live in.

Circling around these main characters are others of equal strength and complexity.  From Dane Blacque, the Alpha wolf to Lukas’ sister and Oliver’s great grand daughter (yes, you read that right), McBridge gives us one compelling persona after another to capture our interest and move her narrative forward.  Even her villains have a startling depth to them that enables you to feel some compassion for them even as you hate their actions, past, present and fear what they are going to do in the future.

This is the first in the Arcada series and really after one memorable walk through town with Lukas and Oliver, you can see she has the basis for many books to come in the fascinating town dwellers and their identities as revealed in bits and pieces.  My only quibble is that I felt it ended too soon.  That’s what happens when all the right elements come together in a story that will stay with you after you are finished reading it.  Blacque/Blue is just that story.  Now I am on to the next with great anticipation.  I will let you know what I find.  But pick this one up and start reading.  You are going to love it!

Books in the series in the order they were written and should be  read:

Blacque/Bleu (Arcada #1)

Silver/Steel (Arcada #2)

Cover art is just gorgeous and perfect for the story within.

Too Stupid To Live by Anne Tenino

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Rating: 4.5 stars

Too Stupid To Live coverSam has his head buried in his latest romance novel and his feet planted on the grass when he is knocked to the ground. Then Sam’s heart notices the ripped body of the man assisting him to his feet and it decides it has met his One True Love.  Turns out Sam had been walking across the rugby playing field and got beaned by the ball.  And no matter that Sam’s head says that his One True Love couldn’t look like some Highlander god or that someone who looked as gorgeous as the man lifting him to his feet would ever want a skinny, nerdy, beanpole like him, Sam’s heart says Sam has met his future husband.

Ian Cully hopes that he has left the worst of his life behind him to start a new life in a new town.  His life as a firefighter ended with a traumatic accident.  Now he has a new job, a new apartment and only his cousin, Jurgan and his partner, Nik, as his connections to his family and his past. Another part of his past Ian is hoping to forget? The part where Ian pretended to be straight. Now he is free to explore his sexuality but where to start? Ian thinks he knows his type, until he goes to the rescue of a guy who got hit by the ball during his rugby game.  One look into the eyes of Sam and all Ian’s suppositions about himself are gone.  In their place is a lanky, blond haired gay with his head in romance novels and a heart too vulnerable for its own good.

But Ian still has some major issues to work through and he is not sure a commitment is something he is capable of.  Everyone is telling Sam that Ian is Mr. Wrong but Sam just can’t convince his heart that is true.  Sam soon starts to wonder if he is not like the character in the books he reads, the one who is too stupid too live, who never sees the trouble coming and gets out of the way.  Is Ian Mr. Wrong or does Sam’s heart know Mr. Right when it sees him?

I didn’t realize until I was several chapters into the book that many of the main characters originated in another book,Anne Tenino’s Whitetail Rock.  I remembered reading it quite a while ago and then Nik, Jurgan and the rest snapped back into place.  But you don’t have to have read that book to enjoy this maddening, happy, exasperating romp through the lives of Sam and Ian.  Sam is a wonder of a character.  Tall, scrawny, head buried in his bodice rippers and riddled with self esteem issues, Sam is a character you want to hug even as you are giving him a little shake.  Sam is endearing, and clearly deserving of True Love but he doesn’t see himself as worthwhile.  That will break your heart as more of Sam is revealed over the storyline. I love my nerds in m/m fiction but Sam is something special.  He is not your normal small, cute blond but lanky, thin haired, and has a big nose and giggles.  I adored him.

Ian Cully comes off at the start as a smug horn dog who could have easily descended into an unlikable character but Ian too has layers that save him from being a stock creation.  He is seeing a therapist, recognizes his issues and wants to change.  It took me a little longer to connect with him but when I did, I feel in love with him just as Sam did.

Anne Tenino’s dialog is a wonder.  It’s funny, charming, topical, and perfect for each character she has created.  There are times I just sat back and laughed out loud at the things that came out of Sam and Nik’s mouths, especially if they were getting their drunk on.  And there are some heartbreaking moments that will have you in tears.  One such scene involves a character that I believe Tenino is setting up for her next novel.  At least I hope so. We absolutely need to know what happens to him.  And that fact alone, that we need to know what happens next in the lives of these people cements my feelings about Too Stupid To Live.  This book is a wonderful romantic ride to Ones True Love, and that is something Sam and Ian both deserved and got with each other.

Too Stupid To Live is listed as Romancelandia #1.  I can’t wait for the others.

Cover artist is LC Chase.  Love this cover.  The model is adorable, the perfect representation of Sam.