Best of 2018 – Week 2 and This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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Best of 2018 – Week 2

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words continues to share its Best of 2018 lists with all of you, this time from our reviewer Ali.  Are you making your lists and checking them twice? I know I am.
Happy Reading and Listening from Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words!

From Ali….

Favorite Books of the Year:

Favorite Audiobooks of the Year:

Infamous by Jenny Holiday/narrated by Michael Fell
They Both Die in the End by Adam Silveria/narrated by Bahni Turpin, Robbie Daymond, Michael Crouch
Family Man by Heidi Cullinan & Marie Sexton/narrated by Colin Darcy
How to Be a Normal Person by TJ Klune/narrated by Derrick McClain

Favorite Series of the Year:

Seven of Spades by Cordelia Kingsbridge
Death and the Devil by LJ Hayward
Big Bad Wolf by Charlie Adhara
The Woodbury Boys by Sidney Bell

Favorite Covers of the Year:

 

 

Pisces Hooks Taurus by Antya Sunday / Natasha Snow
Death of a Bachelor by M.A. Hinkle / Natasha Snow
Gray’s Shadow by K.A. Merikan / Artist: Natasha Snow
To See the Sun by Kelly Jensen / Artist:Garrett Leigh
Lights & Sirens by Lisa Henry / Artist:Natasha Snow
One Eyed Royals by Cordelia Kingsbridge / Artist: Garrett Leigh
Murder Takes the High Road by Josh Lanyon

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, December 16:

  • Release Tour for The Strength of His Heart – Victoria Sue
  • A Chaos Moondrawn Advent Calendar Review: Make a Circle by Elliot Joyce
  • An ALisa Review: Strength of His Heart (Enhanced World #4) by Victoria Sue
  • A MelanieM Review: The Evolution of Jeremy Warsh by Jess Moore
  • Best of 2018 – Week 2 and This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Monday, December 17:

  • Review Tour for Home for Christmas (Texas #9) by R.J. Scott
  • Release Blitz  – Operation Toy Rescue by Sarah Hadley Brook
  • PROMO J.P. Barnaby on Saving Hannah
  • An Alisa Advent Calendar Review: A Holiday Tradition by Chrissy Munder
  • A MelanieM Review: Home for Christmas (Texas #9) by R.J. Scott
  • A Chaos Moondrawn Review: Strength of His Heart (Enhanced World #4) by Victoria Sue

Tuesday, December 18:

  • Release Blitz – Full O’Festive Spirits by Zakarrie Clarke
  • From These Ashes by Davidson King Blog Tour
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review:  Tit for Tat by JS Harker
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: Homebird by Amy Lane
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Release Day Review: Saving Hannah by JP Barnaby
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: The CEO’s Christmas Manny Series: Beyond the Boardroom by Angela McAllister
  • An Ali Advent Calendar Review: Once in a Lifetime by Cassie Decker

Wednesday, December 19:

  • Review Tour –  – Trusting by Ruby Moone
  • Review Tour for  Christmas Prince by RJ Scott
  • Book Blast – Little Harbour by Sophia Soames
  • A Stella Advent Calendar Review: Colina de Lavanda by August Li
  • An Alisa Review Something To Celebrate by Evelyn Benvie “Escape From the Holidays Story”
  • An Alisa Review : Trusting Jack by Ruby Moone
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Home for Christmas (Texas #9) by R.J. Scott

Thursday, December 20:

  • Release Blitz – Kink Aware (Kiss of Leather 9) by Morticia Knight
  • DSP PROMO JS Harker on Tit for Tat
  • An Alisa Review: Vampire with Benefits (Supernatural Selection #2) by E.J. Russell
  • A MelanieM Audio Review: Q*Pid by Xavier Mayne and Rudy Sanda (Narrator)
  • A Free Dreamer Review: Forbidden Pursuits (The Galactic Captains #2) by Harry F. Rey
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Advent Calendar Review:Summer Santa by Ward Maia

Friday, December 21:

  • HARMONY INK PROMO Verity Croker on Jilda’s Ark
  • Review Tour – Sarah Hadley Brook – Operation Toy Rescue
  • DSP PROMO Sean Michael
  • An Alisa Review: Paradise Lodge by Riina Y.T.
  • A MelanieM Advent Calendar Review:Slow Summer Heat by Renae Kaye
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: Tutus and Tinsel by Rhys Ford
  • A Stella Review : Operation Toy Rescue by Sarah Hadley Brook

Saturday, December 22:

  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Advent Review:Season to Shimmer by Kim Katil
  • An Alisa Audio Review: Going Overboard (Anchor Point #5) by L.A. Witt  and Nick J. Russo (Narrator)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Chaos Moondrawn Review: The Holiday Home Hotel (An Escape from the Holidays Story) by Lou Sylvre

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Rating: 3.25 stars out of 5

This is part of the Escape from the Holidays series, but each book is a standalone. The overarching theme for the series is about escaping what is expected and taking a chance on something new. Dee is lonely so his dog Lelia, who is really a minor Slavic goddess wants to bring him love. She cons Leshy, a forest spirit, to help her play matchmaker. As it happens, Gunny is walking in the forest and gets caught in a snowstorm. He stumbles across the Holiday Home Hotel where Lelia’s “owner” lives. As Gunny thinks on his past and the regret he has about his college roommate Darin, Dee is thinking about his bitterness over a man named Gunny…

This is just a fun holiday second chance romance full of magic gifts and paranormal interference. If you would actually like to see them work out their old hurt and build something new in a realistic way, forget that. This is about a magical night of makeup sex in a faerie glade. It’s about a hotel that makes enough money opening for a month in December and a week at Valentine’s day to be able to run camps for the rest of the year to help young people. All winter holidays are celebrated in an inclusive environment with diversity. Darin/Dee/Dare sings in drag and spreads holiday cheer. If this sounds like something that will get you in a festive holiday mood, try it.

The cover artist is Catherine Dair. This shows Darin in front of the hotel with Lelia. The impression is one of fantasy and alludes to Darin love of Kwanzaa and having his hotel be a light in the darkness to welcome people.

Sales Links:

Amazon | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Book Details:

ebook, 101 pages
Expected publication: December 15th 2018 by Mischief Corner Books
ASINB07KKBFC1H
Edition LanguageEnglish

An Alisa Review: Celebrations in the Season of Long Nights (Escape From the Holidays) by Mere Rain

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Rating:  3 stars out of 5

Having escaped his abusive family by winning a scholarship to college, Shahin promised himself he would never go back. So when his plans for winter break fall through and he’s left homeless for a month, he decides he’d rather camp in the park than go home. But he doesn’t realize it’s the solstice, the longest night of the year, the start of the season when the supernatural is at its strongest.

Yima is a demon-hunter, a duty passed down through his family. He doesn’t resent it, but it does get lonely, especially since his work is at its most difficult and dangerous when everyone else is celebrating with family. After he rescues Shahin from an demon attack and finds that he has nowhere safe to stay, he takes him back to his flat. He just arrived in town and hasn’t even gotten the electricity turned on, leaving the two men with little to do but talk.

It isn’t a surprise when they end up in bed, though what at first feels like a temporary comfort grows over days spent together into a deeper bond. Nomadic Yima has to find a way to stay without demons coming after his lover, and Shahin has to decide whether he can risk his heart loving a man who constantly puts his life in danger.

I felt for Shahin from the beginning, as he is trying to survive without any support from his family.  Yima is quite mysterious and not very open.  While I liked Shahin, I didn’t feel much of a connection to Yima though I know he is used to being secretive.  Shahin finds a surrogate mom along the way too.  It was nice for them both to find acceptance and somewhere to belong.

The cover art by Catherine Dair is nice and is one of the holiday series styles.

Sales Link: Mischief Corner Books | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, ~12,500 words

Published: December 12, 2018 by Mischief Corner Books

Edition Language: English

First of Our Best of 2018 Lists. This Week At Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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First of Our Best of 2018 Lists

So this Sunday we are starting off with our first of our Best of 2018 lists.  First up is our reviewer Alisa with her Top Stories down to her Top Covers.  Yes, we have always shared our love of book covers here along with our appreciation of the various artists talents.  Lately we have had some new names appear doing absolutely incredible covers alongside the artists who represent the best in the industry.  So make sure you check out all the names to go along with the beautiful covers we put out there.  Maybe give us a few suggestions of your own.

Also relatively new are the narrators in the  audiobook Best of category.  I listen to more and more audiobooks every year and can’t stress the importance of a fabulous narrator.  They can make or break an audiobook.  Check out who Alisa has as her favorites below.  Do you have yours?

Each week we will roll out more lists…keep an eye out to see how our lists compare with yours.  Did you miss some books?  Did we agree on others?  Let me know!

 

From Alisa:

2018 Top Stories/Novels

Guarding His Melody by Victoria Sue

Blood for the Spilling by TJ Nichols

Promises Part 4 by AE Via

Elemental Magick by Jacki James

Us by Shaw Montgomery

Professor Adorkable by Edie Danford

Discovery by Quinn Ward

Expecting by Sarah Havan

After the Weekend by Silvia Violet

The Swap by Annabella Michaels

Best Audiobooks

Permanent Ink by Avon Gale and Piper Vaughn, narrator Kirt Graves

Kairos by Mary Calmes, narrator Michael Fell

Freckles by Amy Lane, narrator Nick Russo

BFF by KC Wells, narrator Michael Mola

Pins and Needles by AJ Thomas, narrator Jason Riley

Best Series

Men of Meadowfall by Anna Wineheart

Studies in Demonology by TL Nichols

Promises by AE Via

Requiem Inc. by Kris T. Bethke

College of United Monsters by CB Archer

Cold Case Psychic by Pandora Pine

Enhanced World by Victoria Sue

The Accidental Master by MA Innes

Kink in the City by Quinn Ward

Strength by MA Innes

Best Covers

Blood for the Spilling by TJ Nichols, cover artist Catt Ford

Heart of a Redneck by Jodi Payne, cover artist Alexandria Corza

Edge of Living by HL Day, cover artist HL Day

Elemental Magick by Jacki James, cover artist Vicki Brostenianc

Expecting by Sarah Havan, cover artist Melissa Liban

 

Now here is this week at our blog.  We continue with more Advent Calendar stories, I have reviewed an incredible M/M historic romance today called The Bibliophile by Drew Marvin Frayne.  You really should check that out. The Yakuza Path series by Amy Tasukada is as far from a holiday saga as you can get.  But it’s brilliant, bloody, and a must read. Number 4 is out this week.  If you love holiday series, The Christmas Angel series is not to be missed, several of them are also on to be reviewed as well.  So much going on.  Don’t miss a day here.

 

Happy Reading!

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Sunday, December 9: ☃️

  • First of Our Best of 2018 Lists.
  • This Week At Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
  • Book Blast Love’s Trials by Janice Jarrell
  • A MelanieM Review: The Bibliophile by Drew Marvin Frayne
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Oz (Finding Home #1) by Lily Morton
  • An Alisa Advent Calendar Review: Holiday Island by A.D. Ellis

Monday, December 10:☃️

  • COVER REVEAL: Amanda Meuwissen’s A Model Escort
  • Release Blitz for Home For Christmas by RJ Scott
  • Review Tour for A Soldier’s Wish (A Christmas Angel Story) by NR Walker
  • Release Blitz Tour for  Trusting Jack by Ruby Moore
  • A Lila Advent Calendar Review: Boca Dreams by Scudder James Jr
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Release Day Review: A Soldier’s Wish (A Christmas Angel Story) by NR Walker
  • A Lucy Review : Under The Felt Mistletoe by Nell Iris
  • An Alisa Review: Mine for Christmas by AD Lawless

Tuesday, December 11: ☃️

  • PROMO Andrew Grey
  • Release Blitz  Tour – Old Acquaintance by Annabelle Jacobs
  • In the Spotlight Tour and Giveaway: Chasing Forever by Kelly Jensen
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: Stetsons and Stakeouts by BA Tortuga
  • A Lucy Review : All I Want Is You by DJ Jamison
  • A Free Dreamer Advent Calendar Review: Tulsi Vivah by Anna Kaling
  • A Free Dreamer Release Day Review: Showers, Flowers, and Fangs by Aidan Wayne

Wednesday, December 12: ☃️

  • Review Tour – Jordan L Hawk – The Magician’s Angel
  • Review Tour – Old Acquaintance by Annabelle Jacobs
  • Review Tour – The Deafening Silence (The Yakuza Path #4) by Amy Tasukada
  • A MelanieM Review:The Deafening Silence (The Yakuza Path #4) by Amy Tasukada
  • A Lucy Review : Old Acquaintance by Annabelle Jacobs
  • A Lila Advent Calendar Review: Guess Who’s Coming to Karamu by Cy Blanca
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady :The Magician’s Angel (The Christmas Angel #3) by Jordan L. Hawk
  • An Alisa Review: Celebrations in the Season of Long Nights by Mere Rain, a”Escape From the Holidays” Collection from Mischief Corner Books

Thursday, December 13:  ☃️

  • Spells & Stardust Anthology Tour
  • HARMONY INK PROMO Aidan Wayne
  • Book Blast for Pain and Promise by Lazlo Thorn
  • Lessons in Cracking the Deadly Code by Charlie Cochrane Blog Tour
  • A Caryn Review: Vampire with Benefits (Supernatural Selection #2) by E.J. Russell
  • A Chaos Moondrawn Review: Blessed (The Matawapit Family #1) by Maggie Blackbird
  • A MelanieM Review: Spells & Stardust by J. Scott Coatsworth
  • An Alisa Advent Calendar Review: Death to Christmas Sweaters by LE Franks

Friday,  December 14:  ☃️

  • Review Tour –  Christmas Homecoming by LA Witt
  • PROMO BA Tortuga
  • Review Tour for Shrewd Angel (The Christmas Angel #6) by Anyta Sunday
  • Review Tour  for Rebellion by Naomi Aoki
  • An Ali Advent Calendar Review:The Night Sky Festival by S.A. Stovall
  • A Free Dreamer Review:  Rebellion by Naomi Aoki
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady: Christmas Homecoming (The Christmas Angel #4) by L.A. Witt
  • A Lucy Review: Shrewd Angel (The Christmas Angel #6)by Anyta Sunday

Saturday, December 15:  ☃️

  • Review Tour – Neve Wilder – Dedicated (Rhythm Of Love #1)
  • Tour for  Meik&Sebastian – Obsessed #4 by Quin Perin
  • Book Blast: Blessed (The Matawapit Family #1) by Maggie Blackbird
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Advent Calendar Review: Too Hot for Santa by Helena Stone
  • An Alisa Review: Meik&Sebastian – Obsessed #4 by Quin Perin
  • A MelanieM Review: Dedicated (Rhythm Of Love #1) by Neve Wilder
  • A Chaos Moondrawn Review: The Holiday Home Hotel (An Escape from the Holidays Story) by Lou Sylvre
  • A MelanieM Review:  Lessons in Cracking the Deadly Code (Cambridge Fellows #12.7by Charlie Cochrane

 

 

 

 

An Alisa Release Day Review: Slow Thaw: Escape from the Holidays by J. Scott Coatsworth

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Rating:  3 stars out of 5

Javier Fernandez is a climate scientist living in a research station near the South Pole. Since his husband was killed in a car crash, he’s preferred to be alone, and is less than thrilled to have a junior scientist thrust upon him by his rich patron.

Col Steele is a trans man fleeing a bad break-up. He is ready for the next step in his career, and eager to spend Christmas anywhere but at home.

When a crack in the ice separates the two men from safety, they are forced to come to terms with their own losses and each other.

This was a nice story but I had trouble connecting to it and seeing the connection of these characters, other than mild attraction right away they hardly even talked when the disaster happened.  I get that Javier still needed to come to terms with his husband’s death and Col was healing from his break-up but they seemed to jump together after the disaster.  I don’t know it seemed like the couple days of knowing each other without actually getting to know each other didn’t relate to love.

The cover art by Catherine Dair is nice and a good background for the story.

Sales Link: Mischief Corner Books | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, ~23,000 words

Published: December 8, 2018 by Mischief Corner Books

Edition Language: English

Love Holiday Stories? Check Out Mischief Corner Books”Escape From the Holidays” Collection (Guest Post from Gregory Norris and giveaway)

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Escape from the Holidays collection - Mischief Corner Books

Escape from the Holidays Collection

For the second year in a row, Mischief Corner Books is putting out a winter holiday collection – Escape from the Holidays – ten stories revolving around various December holidays:

The end of year holidays can get overwhelming for anyone. Things to do. People to see. Last minute work obligations to take care of. Sometimes it’s just easier to escape from it all, running away from the responsibilities and expectations, or ignore the underlying disappointment from relatives who don’t see eye-to-eye with you.

Because escaping the holiday grind can lead to new, unexpected paths, and breathe new life into one that’s been stuck in a rut. Giving something to run to instead.

Sometimes, getting away from it all lets you know what you really have. Sometimes, taking a chance on the unknown leads to what you really want.

Thanksgiving – Gregory Norris

I grew up enjoying the best Thanksgivings with family thanks to my maternal grandmother, Rachel, and grandfather, Wallace, in a big, mysterious house on Foster’s Pond in Massachusetts that no longer exists. My grandmother cooked everything from scratch. We played board games, walked in the snowy woods, and stuffed ourselves on the incredible feast. It was a glimpse of Heaven.

The year my grandfather passed away, the Thanksgiving tradition ended. At the age of fifteen, having newly discovered my love for writing, I began a new one—penning a complete story as a way to show thanks for the permission I’d been given into that vast universe.

My parents divorced. Thanksgivings ended for me. Years later I met Bruce, and we decided we’d celebrate holidays again. We began holding an annual Thanksgiving open house, and I cooked everything from scratch like my Grandmother Rachel, including her recipe for cranberry sauce, a reliable hit among diners. We invited friends from our writers’ group and others who didn’t have family to spend the holiday with. Bruce made four pies—pecan, pumpkin, and two blueberry pies (my favorite).

Then he was diagnosed with a vicious cousin of Parkinson’s Disease and, with his health failing, in 2017 we were left with no other choice but to cancel our Thanksgiving open house. But almost every year since 1980, I’ve kept with the tradition of penning a complete short story on Thanksgiving Day.

Early this past October, Bruce saw a new neurologist. She treated the late, great actor Kathryn Hepburn. In fact, Hepburn lived with her for a year and blurbed the doctor’s book. She promised she could help us and delivered by putting my husband on a low dose of a medicine used for treating coma patients. The results were nearly instantaneous and borderline miraculous. So much so that a version of my husband is back, coherent, present.

We missed having our home, Xanadu, filled with cherished writers’ group friends, the family we’ve chosen, and put out the invitation for this year’s open house on Thanksgiving Day. Which means I’ll be up super early to start the meal—and also begin work on my annual Thanksgiving Day story. This year’s literary offering will either be a hockey-themed mystery or a fiery ‘pyromance’, to be determined that morning.


Giveaway

Mischief Corner Books is giving away a $25 Mischief Corner Books gift card with this tour. For a chance to win, enter via Rafflecopter:

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About the Books:

COVER - Stay Awhile

Stay Awhile

Author: Kassandra Lea
Release Date: 11/28/18
Word Count: 5K
Cover Artist: Catherine Dair
Genres: Contemporary, Holiday, Romance
Pairings: M/M

Tropes: second chance
Keywords: Thanksgiving, Asexual, Romance

The holidays are usually a whirlwind of busy activity for Anson—decorating, baking for friends—but this year, his heart isn’t in it. He’d hoped coming out to Daly as asexual would be the right thing to do. Since then, he hasn’t heard a word from the handsome photographer.

Now Daly’s suddenly shown up at his front door, asking Anson to trust him, to come with him. He doesn’t dare hope in case this is just another build up to a bigger heartbreak.

Amazon | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

I have my mom to thank for so much. First of all, she fostered a love of reading. According to her I’ve been reading since I could hold a book and I got my first library card at age 3. Growing up I used to read 100 books a year, but of course, that doesn’t happen as often since there’s writing to do and a day job.

Secondly, I have to thank her for always pushing me to keep chasing my dream of being an author. Who else am I going to bounce ideas off of, and she helps me when I get stuck. Suppose you could say she’s my biggest fan.

When I’m not writing I enjoy time with my dog, tending my garden, baking sweet treats, walking through crunchy fall leaves and blankets of cold snow, playing video games, and reading! I’ve a fondness for horses and blankets (is it possible to own too many?)

And yes, some days I still wish I was Batman.

For more information about Kassandra’s work, please visit:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/cheddarsgal
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7369580.Kassandra_Lea
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leakassie/


COVER - Burning Down the House

Burning Down the House

Author: Gregory Norris
Release Date: 12/1/18
Word Count: 11K
Cover Artist: Catherine Dair
Genres: Contemporary, Holiday, Romance
Pairings: M/M
Tropes: Family, Reluctant Suitor
Keywords: Thanksgiving, Romance

Leo’s quiet vacation in Vermont is cut short by news that his beloved grandmother’s in the hospital because she tried to burn down her own house. Feeling low and depressed that she might be falling victim to dementia, Leo takes comfort in a man he meets in the hospital’s Quiet Room. The encounter’s supposed to be a one-night stand, one and done, no strings attached, but Leo’s surprised when he wants more.

The problem is that Aaron comes with strings and complications—ones Leo isn’t sure he wants to deal with on top of his own problems. Leo’s going to have to reach deep if he wants more than superficial, but he’s determined to try if the universe will just cooperate.

Amazon | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Gregory L. Norris is a full-time professional writer, with work appearing in numerous short story anthologies, national magazines, novels, the occasional TV episode, and, so far, one produced feature film (Brutal Colors, which debuted on Amazon Prime last January). A former feature writer and columnist at Sci Fi, the official magazine of the Sci Fi Channel (before all those ridiculous Ys invaded), he once worked as a screenwriter on two episodes of Paramount’s modern classic, Star Trek: Voyager.

Two of his paranormal novels (written under his rom-de-plume, Jo Atkinson) were published by Home Shopping Network as part of their “Escape With Romance” line — the first time HSN has offered novels to their global customer base. Norris judged the 2012 Lambda Awards in the SF/F/H category. Three times now, his short stories have notched Honorable Mentions by Ellen Datlow. He won Honorable Mention in the 2016 Roswell Awards in Short SF for his short story ‘Mandered’. Norris lives and writes in the outer limits of New Hampshire with his husband, their small pride of rescue cats, and his emerald-eyed muse. Follow his literary adventures on Facebook, or at http://www.gregorylnorris.blogspot.com

For more information about Gregory’s work, please visit:

Website: https://gregorylnorris.blogspot.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/gregory.norris.10
Email: gregorynorris@gmail.com


COVER - The Holiday Spirit

The Holiday Spirit

Author: Carole Cummings
Release Date: 12/5/18
Word Count: 5K
Cover Artist: Catherine Dair
Genres: Fantasy, Holiday, Humor, Romance
Pairings: M/M
Tropes: Office Romance
Keywords: Christmas, North Pole, Elves

It’s hard being the PA for the Holiday Spirit.

Julian is more dedicated than most, and knows the job inside and out. But that doesn’t mean he’ll still have a job when the new Holiday Spirit is elected. It also doesn’t mean he’s immune to the *cough* charms of the office, but that’s a whole other problem.

Amazon | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Carole lives with her husband and family in Pennsylvania, USA, where she spends her time trying to find time to write. Recipient of various amateur and professional writing awards, several of her short stories have been translated into Spanish, German, Chinese and Polish.

Author of the Aisling and Wolf’s-own series, Carole is currently in the process of developing several other works, including more short stories than anyone will ever want to read, and novels that turn into series when she’s not looking.

Carole is an avid reader of just about anything that’s written well and has good characters. She is a lifelong writer of the ‘movies’ that run constantly in her head. Surprisingly, she does manage sleep in there somewhere, and though she is rumored to live on coffee and Pixy Stix™, no one has as yet suggested she might be more comfortable in a padded room.

…Well. Not to her face.

For more information about Carole’s work, please visit:

Website: http://www.carolecummings.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/carole.cummings.9
Page: https://www.facebook.com/Carole-Cummings-129381137086663/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/CummingsCarole
Email: carole@carolecummings.com


COVER - Slow Thaw

Slow Thaw

Author: J. Scott Coatsworth
Release Date: 12/8/18
Word Count: 22K
Cover Artist: Catherine Dair
Genres: Contemporary, Near Future SF, Holiday, Romance
Pairings: M/M
Tropes: Enemies to Lovers, Workplace Romance
Keywords: scientists, isolated setting, Antarctic

Javier Fernandez is a climate scientist living in a research station near the South Pole. Since his husband was killed in a car crash, he’s preferred to be alone, and is less than thrilled to have a junior scientist thrust upon him by his rich patron.

Col Steele is a trans man fleeing a bad break-up. He is ready for the next step in his career, and eager to spend Christmas anywhere but at home.

When a crack in the ice separates the two men from safety, they are forced to come to terms with their own losses and each other.

Amazon | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Scott is the admin for the Queer Sci Fi site. He has been writing since elementary school, when he and won a University of Arizona writing contest in 4th grade for his first sci fi story (with illustrations!). He finished his first novel in his mid twenties, but after seeing it rejected by ten publishers, he gave up on writing for a while.

Over the ensuing years, he came back to it periodically, but it never stuck. Then one day, he was complaining to Mark, his husband, early last year about how he had been derailed yet again by the death of a family member, and Mark said to him “the only one stopping you from writing is you.”

Since then, Scott has gone back to writing in a big way, finishing more than a dozen short stories – some new, some that he had started years before – and seeing his first sale. He’s embarking on a new trilogy, and also runs a support group for writers of gay sci fi, fantasy, and supernatural fiction.

For more information about Scott’s work, please visit:

Website: http://www.jscottcoatsworth.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/jscoatsworth
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/jscottcoatsworth
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/jscottcoatsworthauthor/


COVER - Celebrations in the Seasons of Long Nights

Celebrations In The Season Of Long Nights

Author: Mere Rain
Release Date: 12/12/18
Word Count: 12K
Cover Artist: Catherine Dair
Genres: Paranormal, Holiday, Romance
Pairings: M/M
Tropes: Protector, Anticipating Abandonment
Keywords: Demon hunter, holiday

Having escaped his abusive family by winning a scholarship to college, Shahin promised himself he would never go back. So when his plans for winter break fall through and he’s left homeless for a month, he decides he’d rather camp in the park than go home. But he doesn’t realize it’s the solstice, the longest night of the year, the start of the season when the supernatural is at its strongest.

Yima is a demon-hunter, a duty passed down through his family. He doesn’t resent it, but it does get lonely, especially since his work is at its most difficult and dangerous when everyone else is celebrating with family. After he rescues Shahin from a demon attack and finds that he has nowhere safe to stay, he takes him back to his flat.

Amazon | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Mere Rain is an international nonentity of mystery whose library resides in California.

Mere likes reading, travel, food, art, and you.

For more information about Mere’s work, please visit:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mere.rain.54/
Email: mererainwriting@gmail.com


COVER - The Holiday Home Hotel

The Holiday Home Hotel

Author: Lou Sylvre
Release Date: 12/15/18
Word Count: 30K
Cover Artist: Catherine Dair
Genres: Magical Realism, Paranormal, Holiday, Interracial, Romance
Pairings: M/M
Tropes: second chances, divine interference
Keywords: singer, drag, hotel, gods

Daren Novak and Gunny Schuler have known each other since freshmen days at the University of Washington, where they’d started a romance Daren assumed would last. But at the start of winter break, Gunny bowed to the dictates of his lifelong religion and his overbearing father and left UW never to return.

After a failed marriage, Gunny built a quiet life embracing his gay identity, and left his North Dakota home, his marriage, and his father’s business for a forestry and teaching career in Oregon. Meanwhile, Daren has built up his own life around managing a unique holiday venue, the Holiday Home Hotel, and performing for the guests in drag as “Dare.”

A decade has passed since they last saw each other, but now winter’s harsh weather brings them face to face—helped along by a minor goddess and powerful forest spirit. Too much hurt might lie between them now to fix things, but interfering supernatural beings are determined to force them to try.

Amazon | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Lou Sylvre loves romance with all its ups and downs, and she likes to conjure it into books. The sweethearts on her pages are men who end up loving each other, and sometimes saving each other from unspeakable danger. It’s all pretty crazy and very sexy.

As if you’d want to know more, she’ll happily tell you that she is a proudly bisexual woman, a mother, grandmother, lover of languages, and cat-herder. She works closely with lead cat and writing assistant, the (male) Queen of Budapest, Boudreau St. Clair.

She is the author of the six well-loved books of the Vasquez and James Series and a holiday favorite, Falling Snow on Snow. She teamed up with Kiwi author Anne Barwell to write Sunset at Pencarrow, an adventurous tale of New Zealand romance.

For more information about Lou’s work, please visit:

Website: http://www.rainbow-gate.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorLouSylvre/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Sylvre
Blog: http://www.sylvre.rainbow-gate.com
Email: lou.sylvre@gmail.com


COVER - Something to Celebrate

Something to Celebrate

Author: Evelyn Benvie
Release Date: 12/19/18
Word Count: 21K
Cover Artist: Catherine Dair
Genres: Paranormal, Holiday, Romance, Interracial
Pairings: M/NB
Tropes: Mysterious stranger, culture clash
Keywords: holiday, yokai, Japanese myth, demisexual, nonbinary

Niko doesn’t hate the holidays; that would require too much commitment. He just doesn’t care about them anymore. He’s a demi, disillusioned mess and he doesn’t care about much at all. That is, until an enticing stranger blows into his life this Christmas and catches his attention–and his heart.

Fan is lost and lonely, a winter spirit adrift in a human world that has all but forgotten them. And then they meet Niko, a young man with the ability to see them, and they remember what it means to stay somewhere. To want someone.

Chance brings them together. But is chance enough to build a relationship on?

Amazon | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Evelyn Benvie is a wooly jumper from a family of black sheep and has always wanted to be a writer. She was raised on a steady diet of classic fantasy and science fiction but grew dissatisfied with the way people and relationships were often portrayed in mainstream books. Like, why does the princess have to get married at all? Why are aliens gender-coded? Why is every single person straight?

So she dreamed of writing sensible books with sensible characters who better reflected her own experiences as a queer woman. It’s taken a while, and fiction has gotten a lot more diverse since then (even as her own characters have gotten a whole lot less sensible), but it’s all good. “Something To Celebrate” is her first major publication; please continue to support the author in the future!

For more information about Evelyn’s work, please visit:

Website: http://www.evelynbenvie.com
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/EvelynBenvie


COVER - Holiday Hijinks

Holiday Hijinks

Author: Toni Griffin
Release Date: 12/22/18
Word Count: 22K
Cover Artist: Lou Harper
Genres: Paranormal, Holiday
Pairings: M/M
Tropes: family, comedy of errors
Keywords: hellhound, demons, holiday, Christmas

This year the holidays seem to be rubbing Archie the wrong way. He can’t stand that damn happy music blasting in the stores and all over the radio. The decorations went up far too early—and don’t even get Archie started on how cheery everyone is.

Seeing the holidays cause Archie to slip back into a depression, Adze decides to take matters into his own hands. The one thing his mate has always wanted is to see the Tudor houses in England. Besides, it’s the perfect time to escape the humdrum heat in Melbourne. Adze can’t think of anything better than curling up in front of a roaring fire with his mate while snow falls outside.

Of course, life would never be that easy. Baby demon stowaways and Christmas Krampuses hell-bent on doing good leave the pair wondering just where things went wrong.

Buy Links Coming Soon

Toni Griffin lives in Darwin, the smallest of Australia’s capital cities. Born and raised in the state she’s a Territorian through and through. Growing up Toni hated English with a passion (as her editors can probably attest to) and found her strength lies with numbers.

Now, though, she loves escaping to the worlds she creates and hopes to continue to do so for many years to come. She’s a single mother of one and works full time. When she’s not writing you can just about guarantee that she will be reading one of the many MM authors she loves.

Feel free to drop her a line at info@tonigriffin.net anytime.

For more information about Toni’s work, please visit:

Website: http://tonigriffin.net
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/toni.griffin.author


COVER - Yule Planet

Yule Planet

Author: Angel Martinez
Release Date: 12/26/18
Word Count: 15K
Cover Artist: L.C. Chase
Genres: Science Fiction, Humor, Romance
Pairings: F/F
Tropes: enemies to lovers, displaced person
Keywords: alien planet, snow, Yule, resort, shipwrecked

Sofia Cancino is tired of her mundane life, her artificial environment and her large, boisterous family descending every holiday season. She’s promised herself this year will be different and books a stay on the exclusive—and expensive–holiday-themed resort, Yule Planet. She looks forward to being pampered while reconnecting with Old Earth traditions steeped in the magic and mysticism of nature. Everything will be perfect and she’ll leave as a more authentic human, better connected to her roots.

Naturally, things go horribly wrong. Sofia’s landing pod goes off course and instead of stepping out on the landing pad at the resort, she finds herself in the snow-swept perpetual winter of the planet’s hinterlands. If that wasn’t bad enough, she’s “rescued” by a band of criminals on work release who run deliveries to the resort from far-flung shuttle delivery sites. They refuse to take her, a paying customer, to the resort and insist on dragging her along on their parcel run. Riding giant monsters. In frigid weather. Not to mention, Marta, who handles the monsters, obviously hates her.

If Sofia survives her vacation, she’s definitely yelling at someone’s supervisor until she gets a refund.

Buy Links Coming Soon

While Angel Martinez is the adult fiction pen name of a writer of several genres, she writes both kinds of queer fiction – Science Fiction and Fantasy. Currently living part time in the hectic sprawl of northern Delaware, (and full time inside the author’s head) Angel has one husband, one son, two cats, a changing variety of other furred and scaled companions, a love of all things beautiful and a terrible addiction to the consumption of both knowledge and chocolate.

For more information on Angel’s work, please visit:

Website: https://angelmartinezauthor.weebly.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Angel.Martinez.author
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1010469.Angel_Martinez
Email: angelmartinezauthor@gmail.com


COVER - Waiting on the Rain

Waiting on the Rain

Author: Freddy MacKay
Release Date: 12/29/18
Word Count: 25K
Cover Artist: Catherine Dair
Genres: Paranormal, Holiday, Romance
Pairings: M/M

One young man desperate to make things right for the monks who raised him. Another looking to escape the limelight. The two best friends stuck in time because of promises.

A couple looking to make a bigger unconventional family—one young woman who wants to help the world become a more beautiful place, one transwoman looking to put down roots for the both of them.

Love isn’t always easy, but the good kind is worth fighting for, even when others don’t understand it. The story of what becomes of their love is what will be passed down into legend. Because stories like this, people remember.

When Jira, Boon, Areeya and Fon come together to celebrate Yee Peng and Loy Krathong, sparks fly and dreams coalesce. But that’s only the beginning…

Buy Links Coming Soon

Freddy grew up in the Midwest, playing sports and running around outside. And honestly, that much has not changed since Freddy was small and throwing worms at other kids, except worm throwing has been replaced with a healthy geocaching addiction. Freddy enjoys traveling and holds the view a person should continually to learn about new things and people whenever possible.

Freddy’s contemporary LGBTQ book, Incubation: Finding Peace 2, won 3rd Place – Best Gay Erotic Fiction in the 2012 Rainbow Awards. In 2013, Freddy’s story, Internment, tied for 3rd Place – Best Gay Fantasy in the Rainbow Awards. Freddy’s steampunk/SF story, Feel Me, was a Finalist and honorable mention in the 2014 Rainbow Awards for SF. And in 2015, Freddy’s urban fantasy Snow on Spirit Bridge was also a Finalist and honorable mention.

For more information on Freddy’s work, please visit or email:

Website: https://freddysstereograph.weebly.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/FreddyMacKay
Email: freddy.m.mackay@gmail.com

A MelanieM Release Day Review: The Holiday Spirit by Carole Cummings

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Rating 5 stars out of 5

It’s hard being the PA for the Holiday Spirit.

Julian is more dedicated than most, and knows the job inside and out. But that doesn’t mean he’ll still have a job when the new Holiday Spirit is elected. It also doesn’t mean he’s immune to the *cough* charms of the office, but that’s a whole other problem.

I’m a fan of this author and grabbed up her offer in Mischief Corner Book’s Holiday Collection ‘Escape from the Holidays’. What an absolute delight! Full of imagination, it opens into a scene of high suspense!   In a North Pole conclave most similar to one where a new pope is being elected,  all await the signal that indicates a new Holiday Spirit has been elected!  Seems the old one made a hash of it during his reign (who gets penguins angry at them) and only his P.A. managed to maintain order and keep things running.  That would be Julian who now anxiously awaits his new boss, and sees if he even has a job after the disaster of the last one.

In 32 pages, Cummings gives us detailed office politics, sparkling personalities, an hilarious and kinky married couple, the place of pheromones within the culture, world building, and the start of a wonderful romance.  Honestly, I didn’t want it to end.

If I only had one thing to say, it would be to plead that we have a sequel, maybe next year to The Holiday Spirit, so we can check in on the office, assistance PA, married couple and maybe even the Boss and his PA?  Pretty please with a candy cane on top?

Love your holiday stories?  Be sure to add The Holiday Spirit by Carole Cummings for your holiday reading pleasure!  I highly recommend it.

Cover art is magical and sort of perfect for the story involved.  Love it.

Sales Links:  Mischief Corner Books | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 32 pages
Expected publication: December 5th 2018 by Mischief Corner Books
Original Title The Holiday Spirit
Edition Language English

Into the Holidays We Go and This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

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Into the Holidays We Go and Oh What Our Lists Will Bring!

It’s official, we’re in December, the last month of the year.  The beginning of the winter celebrations where we see the longest night of the year, the bonfires light to drive the darkness away and the return of increasing daylight, one minute at a time.  We acknowledge the passing of the old and the arrival of the new.  We reflect and look forward.  A time of straddling the boundaries between what has gone the year past and what we will make of the time that’s coming.

As with all things we’ve had our incredible highs and unexpected lows in losses this year.  Authors who’s passing has left us a much smaller and poorer community.  I’ll talk about that later this month.

I want to also remember all the wonderful authors, and their stories, the cover artists and their work, on books we loved this year.  It’s so hard to winnow it down into lists.

How do you compare an  outstanding cozy mystery series with a violinist with autism with a soaring SciFy masterpiece about a sentient spaceship?  Can’t possibly go in the same category and do both authors justice!  Or the finale of a urban fantasy that  reads like a nerd’s list of wanna’s but has been constructed ever so carefully  amidst careening mind blown action.  Do you throw that in against a book with deeply drawn portraits of lovers in a contemporary romance?  No, again, I think not.

Plus we have some outstanding 5 star holiday stories that surely deserve their own category?  How to divide up the list into sections without going crazy?

Hmmmm.

Thoughts anyone?

Anyhow, I’m working on that and lists will be soon rolling out.  Let me have a few of your Best of 2018.  We will be awarding some gift certificates just because it’s December for those who participate.

 

Happy Reading, get those  lists in, and check out all the stories we have coming at you this week!

 

This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

 

Sunday, December 2:

  • Release Blitz – Saving Jax by L.M. Brown
  • Blog Tour for Drawn  to You by Jaclyn Quinn
  • Closer by F.E. Feeley, Jr Book Blast
  • A Barb The Zany Old Lady Advent Calendar Review:That Turtle Story by C.S. Poe
  • Into the Holidays We Go and This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Monday, December 3:

  • RELEASE BLITZ Rough Trade by Sidney Bell
  • Release Blitz  A Soldier’s Wish by NR Walker
  • Review Tour – Neutral Zone by RJ Scott & V.L. Locey
  • An Ali Review: Rough Trade by Sidney Bell
  • A MelanieM Review :Neutral Zone (Harrisburg Railers #7) by R.J. Scott & V.L. Locey
  • A MelanieM Review:  Best In Show by Kelly Jensen
  • A Stella Advent Calendar Review: Barbies and Beaches by Asta Idonea

Tuesday, December 4:

  • Book Blitz Defensive Play by Jamie Deacon
  • Review Tour –  Christmas Angel (The Christmas Angel #1) by Eli Easton
  • An Alisa Release Day Review: Sunshine in the Dragon’s Heart by Jaime Samms
  • A Caryn Review Broken Halos by Aimee Nicole Walker
  • A Stella Advent Calendar Review: Mosquitoes and Mistletoe by Ren Holly
  • A Lucy Review: Christmas Angel (The Christmas Angel #1) by Eli Easton

Wednesday, December 5:

  • Cover Reveal for  Illumined Shadows by G.R Lyons 
  • Review Tour  for Loving A Warrior by Melanie Hansen
  • Release Blitz Tour –  – The Deafening Silence by Amy Tasukada
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review  Loving A Warrior by Melanie Hansen
  • A MelanieM Review: Loving a Warrior by Melanie Hansen
  • A MelanieM Review: The Holiday Spirit by Carole Cummings
  • A Chaos Moondrawn Advent Review:The Last Birthday Party by Mere Rain
  • An Alisa Review Surreal Estate by Jesi Lea Ryan

Thursday, December 6:

  • Review Tour – Kim Fielding – Summerfield’s Angel
  • Havoc (Tattoos and Ties) by Kindle Alexander New Release Tour
  • DSP PROMO Liv Olteano
  • Cover Reveal – A World Apart by Mel Gough
  • A MelanieM Review: Havoc (Tattoos and Ties) by Kindle Alexander
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review : Summerfield’s Angel by Kim Fielding
  • A MelanieM Advent Calendar Review: Warren’s Peace by Emjay Haze
  • A MelanieM Review:Lucky Town by Morgan Brice

Friday, December 7:

  • PROMO Jaime Samms
  • Mischief Corner Books”Escape From the Holidays” Collection
  • Blog Tour – The Stars May Rise and Fall by Estella Mirai
  • An Alisa Review: The Last Prince by Shawn Bailey
  • A Chaos Moondrawn Review:  Semper Fae by Angel Martinez
  • A Stella Advent Calendar Review:Trapped in the Valley of the Kings by Blue Jones
  • A MelanieM Release Day Review: Christmas Kitsch by Amy Lane
  • A Barb the Zany Old Lady Audio Review: P.S. I Spook You by S.E. Harmon and Noah Michael Levine (Narrator)

Saturday, December 8:

  • Release Blitz – Nell Iris – Under The Felt Mistletoe
  • Release Blitz – The Selkie Prince’s Unexpected Omega (The Royal Alphas)
  • Release Blitz for Ari McKay – Designer Holiday
  • An Alisa Review: Slow Thaw by J. Scott Coatsworth (MCB anthology)
  • A Caryn Advent Calendar Review:The Faller by Daniel de Lorne

 

An Alisa Review: Burning Down the House (Escape from the Holidays) by Gregory L. Norris

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Rating:  3 stars out of 5

Leo’s quiet vacation in Vermont is cut short by news that his beloved grandmother’s in the hospital because she tried to burn down her own house. Feeling low and depressed that she might be falling victim to dementia, Leo takes comfort in a man he meets in the hospital’s Quiet Room. The encounter’s supposed to be a one-night stand, one and done, no strings attached, but Leo’s surprised when he wants more.

The problem is that Aaron comes with strings and complications—ones Leo isn’t sure he wants to deal with on top of his own problems. Leo’s going to have to reach deep if he wants more than superficial, but he’s determined to try if the universe will just cooperate.

This was an alright story and I liked the premise but the style of writing didn’t connect with me.  Often much was skipped or summed up in a paragraph or two and along with the writing style made me feel as if I was missing a lot.  Leo and Aaron are perfect for each other and quickly actually start a relationship much the Leo’s obliviousness and attempting to be a free spirit.  It was nice to see how they could combine their lives and make it easier on the ones that were sick.

The cover art by Catherine Dair is nice and is one of the holiday series styles.

Sales Link: Mischief Corner Books | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, ~11,500 words

Published: December 1, 2018 by Mischief Corner Books

Edition Language: English

A Lucy Review: Stay Awhile by Kassandra Lea

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Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5

The holidays are usually a whirlwind of busy activity for Anson—decorating, baking for friends—but this year, his heart isn’t in it. He’d hoped coming out to Daly as asexual would be the right thing to do. Since then, he hasn’t heard a word from the handsome photographer.

Now Daly’s suddenly shown up at his front door, asking Anson to trust him, to come with him. He doesn’t dare hope in case this is just another build up to a bigger heartbreak.

The story starts with Anson, drinking hot cocoa and feeling heartsick.  His cat, Noodles, is his only company right now. He’s been waiting for some kind of message from his boyfriend, Daly, and so far hasn’t received one, until Daly shows up at the door.  Apparently, it’s been weeks since he heard anything from Daly and now Daly starts out by enthusing about the pie Anson made.  That was a little odd, but Daly wants to show Anson something. 

I was excited to see this holiday book featuring an asexual MC and I was curious to see how the sex aspect would be handled.   It is a short story at 33 pages and so there isn’t time to fit everything in.  We get the flashback of Anson and Daly’s about-to-be first kiss, which is followed by “And that was the moment he chose to blurt it out, the words popping out of his mouth.  “I’m asexual.”  So that was how Daly finds out, except I can’t help but think he had to have some idea when you’ve been with a guy for months and haven’t even shared a kiss.

While I liked what was here, I felt like I had been dropped into the middle of a chapter.  We are told Daly needed time but we aren’t shown that, or what his actual reaction was, or how that conversation went after Anson’s blurt out.  I needed that to better connect with these guys.  The end also seemed a little too easy, needing more of a conversation.

So it’s a very short, sweet scene of Anson and Daly.

Sales Links:  Mischief Corner Books | Amazon

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 1, 33 pages
Expected publication: November 28th 2018 by Mischief Corner Books, LLC
ASIN B07K6S8L6K
Edition Language English