Monday, November 19, 2018

ARC Review: Bishop Ridge by Cate Ashwood

Blurb:
They found exactly what they weren’t looking for.

Logan:
I had almost everything I’d ever wanted—career, friends, my own easy life in Sawyer’s Ferry, Alaska. I’d given up on filling in the missing pieces long ago. Now, I was more than satisfied with the perfectly practiced, perfectly predictable routine I’d created for myself. At least until Jackson Daley walked into my clinic.

Jackson:
Working the rigs is temporary. Everything in my life is. Jobs, cities, and the guys I take home—nothing sticks, and that’s exactly the way I like it. After four years in Alaska, I’m itching to pick up and leave. I’m ready to move on and start over someplace new, until a one-night stand I can’t seem to shake has me breaking all my own rules.

Now as I get closer to walking away, my reasons for leaving seem blurrier than ever, and for the first time in my life, there could be something worth staying for.


Dani's rating:




This book is:

- STEAMY: Logan and Jackson connect sexually first and can’t keep their hands off each other. The inconvenient feelings come later.

- Relatively low angst: Neither man plans on falling in love, and Jackson doesn’t think he’s built for commitment. Logan is willing to take the leap even when Jackson pushes him away. It takes a near-tragedy to get Jackson to see reason.

- A standalone: While Gage and Holden, the MCs from Alaska, are present in the story (and I loved seeing them all dove-eyed), Jackson and Logan’s story doesn’t require any background information.

- Filled with great secondary characters: Besides Gage and Holden, we meet Jackson’s friends and more residents of Sawyer’s Ferry. We also revisit with sassy Frankie, Holden's friend from New York, who appears for but a moment but kind of steals the show.

I am particularly interested in Witt, who cannot hold his liquor but is a total sweetheart. I am crossing my fingers that Witt gets his own story!


Blogtour: Fair Isn't Life by Kaje Harper




Please welcome Kaje Harper with 

Fair Isn't Life

a States Of Love title 



I'm enjoying this blog tour that Dreamspinner Press set up for my book Fair Isn't Life, and I appreciate the welcome from My Fiction Nook.
In a previous post, I introduced readers to Luke, one of my two main characters. Now I want to let people get to know the other guy— Mason— with an exclusive excerpt from his POV in the story.


iStock by Getty Images - https://www.istockphoto.com/ - standard license



Mason's 20, proudly out and gay, attending university in Minneapolis. He likes his eyes lined, his hair long, his lips glossed, and his clarinet in tune, although music is just a hobby for him. Mason left his hometown and took to the big-city University of Minnesota, like a duck takes to… less than calm waters. There are many good things about the U for Mason, but he hasn't yet found his solid ground. Seeing his high school crush, Luke, picking up trash at the Minnesota State Fair, reminds him that some good things may have gotten lost in his move to the Twin Cities. And Mason's never been one to let the grass grow under his feet, so he's about to try to change that.

About the book


Luke Lafontaine survived the past year by not thinking about the father he lost, the dairy farm he couldn’t save from bankruptcy, or his way of life that vanished with the rap of an auctioneer’s hammer. Cleaning up city folks’ trash at the Minnesota State Fair is just another dead-end job. But at the Fair, surrounded by a celebration of farm life, ambitions he’d given up on and buried deep start to revive. And seeing Mason Bell in the parade—gorgeous, gay, out-of-his-league Mason—stirs other buried dreams.
Mason left his hometown for college in Minneapolis without looking back. Student life is fun, classes are great, gay guys are easy to find, but it’s all a bit superficial. He’s at the State Fair parade route with his band when he realizes a scruffy maintenance worker is Luke, his secret high school crush. Luke should be safely home working on his dad’s farm, not picking up litter. Mason wishes he hadn’t fallen out of touch. He’s an optimist, though, and it’s never too late for second chances. Now he just has to convince Luke.


Excerpt:

One of Mason’s perks for being included in the State Fair parade—thank you, Dr. Tristan’s connections—was free admission. After they'd finished marching and the instruments had been safely stowed away, they’d traded heatstroke-inducing jackets and bibbers for T-shirts and shorts, and spent six hours blowing their cash on food, rides, and vaguely phallic balloons for sword-fighting. Mason had convinced the gang to go back to the haunted house twice, but he’d never caught sight of Luke.
Which was why he was back buying a general admission ticket the next day. He could’ve pretended it was because he hadn’t eaten enough foods on a stick, or because Mindy had shot down checking out the fancy chickens. Weird poultry were always cool; she didn’t know what she was missing. But he liked to think he didn’t tell lies, at least to himself.
He wanted to see Luke again.
They’d had a weird almost-friendship in high school, based on math tutoring and baseball. He’d even spent time at Luke’s farm for tutoring sessions, and they’d played a little Path of Exile. Luke was a good guy, quiet and slow-moving but not stupid. Big as a barn, which wasn’t a bad thing in Mason’s book. Behind in his classes—yeah, to where he’d been held back a grade at some point—and sometimes off in his own head, which was why he got teased for being dumb, but Mason had seen different. People like Arnie hadn’t known the real Luke. He was just really hard to read.
His house had a Bible cross-stitch in the entry and a picture of Jesus in the bathroom. (Because who doesn’t want the Lord watching them take a shit?) His dad was even bigger and gruffer than Luke was. Luke wore ugly clothes, and yeah, maybe he was buying secondhand, but Ragstock had cheap and not-ugly, if a guy cared how he looked. Yet he hadn’t blinked an eye at being assigned one of the gayest guys in his class as a tutor.
A few times, Mason had imagined Luke’s rare smiles might mean something besides pleasure at finally learning how to factor an equation. He hadn’t dared ask because coming on to a probably straight guy the size of a bear was a bad idea. But he also hadn’t realized how much unresolved curiosity he’d pushed aside until he saw Luke again and his whole body and brain went huh, I wonder?
The haunted house zone where he’d seen Luke was near the gates. He headed there first. The Sunday crowd was even bigger and a bit rushier, either because the day was cooler, praise all the gods, or because people knew they only had one more chance to eat forty-one foods on a stick. Mason stepped off the sidewalk onto a patch of beat-up grass and debated strategy.
He could stand still in the place where Luke had appeared yesterday and hope Luke had a set routine. Or he could wander the area and let fate take its course. Mason had never been a standing-still kind of person. Wandering, definitely.
Two hours later he was about ready to give up when he spotted a pair of wide shoulders bent over a trash barrel. Mason jogged across the street, managing not to be hit by the trolley. “Hey! Luke!”
Luke whirled and took a big step back, glaring, hands raised as if to ward him off. It wasn’t the welcome Mason had been picturing.
“What’re you doing here?” Luke’s sharp tone made Mason’s breath stutter.
“I-it’s the Great Minnesota Get-Together. I thought we could get together.” The dumb line spilled out of his mouth, his brain totally forgetting the ten better ideas he’d come up with. “I mean, I thought we could hang out. If you want to.”
“I’m working.”
“Yeah, like, after you’re done.”
“Why?”
“Um.” He ran his fingers through his hair, tugging at it to get his brain back online. “Because I haven’t seen you in a couple years, and we’re friends.”
“Are we? You left, and didn’t look back.”
“Yeah, okay, that’s fair. But I’m trying to fix that.”
“I don’t need fixing.”
“Not fix you.” He sighed. “Look, I realized I’ve missed hanging out with you. I figured this was the best place to find you and see if you wanted to grab a pop and get caught up.”
“Is Arnie here too?”
“Are you kidding? A few hours at practice is all I can stand of Arnie.”
Luke glanced away, walked two steps, and picked up a stray corn dog wrapper. Still not looking at Mason, he dropped it in a bin.
Is that it? Mason decided he hadn’t sprung for gas and a ticket to walk away on a maybe. “I figured we could still be friends. But if you don’t want to, say so. I’m still just as gay, if that makes a difference.” He wasn’t sure where that bit of snark came from.
Luke snorted. “No kidding, Mase. What are you going for, the Cher look?”
Mason flicked his hair back over his shoulder. “I wish. I’d need more eyeshadow and another two feet of hair.”
“Yours is already pretty long. But you’d need higher heels. Does Cher ever wear sneakers?”

Review Tour: Mr. Winterbourne's Christmas by Joanna Chambers



Length: 30,000 words approx.
Cover Design: Natasha Snow


Winterbourne Series

Volume #1 - Introducing Mr. Winterbourne 
- CURRENTLY FREE - 




Blurb

Lysander Winterbourne has been living happily at Edgeley Park for the last eighteen months. By day he is Adam Freeman's estate manager, by night, his lover...but Adam never speaks of his feelings and Lysander has no idea whether their relationship is any more than a convenient arrangement for Adam.

When the two men are invited to Winterbourne Abbey for a family Christmas, matters quickly come to a head. Snowed in at the Abbey with a house full of guests, Lysander has to face up to shocking revelations, long-held secrets and a choice he never expected to have to make...






Dani's review:






I absolutely adored this follow-up to Introducing Mr. Winterbourne. In my review of that book, I wrote: The only thing about this story I didn't like is that it ended (on a rather tentative note).

Joanna Chambers must have heard my plea, because this holiday novella leaves no doubt as to Adam and Lysander's future. 

Mr. Winterbourne's Christmas begins with a HFN and ends with a HEA. Adam and Lysander have been together for a year and a half, but neither has expressed his feelings. Adam wonders how long social Lysander will stay without getting bored, while Lysander worries Adam keeps him around only because he's a good estate steward. 

When Adam is invited to Lysander's family's house for Christmas, the two are placed in separate wings of the house and can't catch but a minute together. Someone, or something, always interrupts.

Sunday, November 18, 2018

ARC Review: Single White Incubus by E.J. Russell

Single White Incubus (Supernatural Selection, #1)From the blurb:

Does a bear shift in the woods? 
Well, partially. That was what got grizzly shifter Ted Farnsworth into trouble. He wasn’t trying to break the Secrecy Pact. He just wants people to see the real him. So he signs up with the mate-matching service Supernatural Selection — which guarantees marriage to a perfect partner. Not only will Ted never be lonely again, but once his new beaver shifter husband arrives, they’ll build Ted’s dream wilderness retreat together. Win-win.

Quentin Bertrand-Harrington, scion of an incubus dynasty, has abstained from sex since nearly killing his last lover. When his family declares it’s time for him to marry, Quentin decides the only way not to murder his partner is to pick someone who’s already dead. Supernatural Selection finds him the ideal vampire, and Quentin signs the marriage agreement sight unseen.
 
But a mix-up at Supernatural Selection contracts Quentin with Ted. What’s Ted supposed to do with an art historian who knows more about salad forks than screwdrivers? And how can Quentin resist Ted’s mouthwatering life force? Yet as they work together to untangle their inconvenient union, they begin to wonder if their unexpected match might be perfect after all.


Heather's rating:





A sweet, fluffy paranormal story, just like I've come to expect from E.J. Russell.

Single White Incubus was really exactly as I thought it would be, and I'm not mad about that. I love an opposites attract story, and we get that plus a quasi enemies-to-lovers and an adorable, huge bear-shifter rolled into one. That right there spells a win for me.

However, as with many books by this author, it just was a little off. There were oodles of miscommunications, which I hate, and some rambling tangent storylines that took away from the relationship development. I felt like the story was too long with too much going on, and I was a bit bored by the end. Also, it was SO frustrating that these two didn't get their act together earlier. I mean, we barely got to see them as a couple. This book was like their intro story, to be honest.

Sales Blitz: September and Every Breath You Take by Robert Winter





Don't wait until Black Friday to take advantage of holiday savings! Start your shopping early with this great sale on two amazing books. The sooner you buy, the more you save!


Amazon US


November 17, 2018 at 8:00 AM (PST) $0.99

November 18, 2018 at 9:00 PM (PST) $1.99

November 20, 2018 at 10:00 AM (PST) $2.99


Amazon UK


November 17, 2018 at 8:00 PM (GMT) £0.99

November 19, 2018 at 8:00 AM (GMT) £1.99


Sale ends on November 22nd

Books Sold Separately




Title: September
Series: Pride and Joy #1
Author: Robert Winter
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Original Release Date: Dec 9, 2016
Heat Level: 4 - Lots of Sex
Pairing: Male/Male
Length: 304 Pages
Genre: Romance, May-December, Contemporary, Provincetown, Washington DC


Add to Goodreads



Synopsis


David James is smart, successful, handsome… and alone. After the death of his lover, Kyle, from cancer, he buried himself in his law practice and the gym. At forty-eight, he is haunted by his memories and walled off from the world. When David injures himself working out, he’s assigned to Brandon Smith for physical therapy. The vibrant young therapist is attracted to David and realizes he needs a hand to get back into dating. What begins as a practice coffee date escalates to friendship, passion, and maybe something more, as they navigate a new relationship in Washington, DC, and the gay mecca of Provincetown.

But David remains trapped behind the barrier of fear and guilt. Will he remain loyal to Kyle’s memory if he moves on? Can he and Brandon manage a twenty-two-year age gap? Brandon thinks he understands David’s concerns, and for him, the answer to those questions is yes. He wants to be with David, and he believes he can overcome David’s barriers. But Brandon fails to account for the world’s reaction to a handsome young man attached to an older, wealthy lover.

David’s memories, Brandon’s pride, and an unexpected tragedy might cost them something very special…


Purchase at Amazon








Title: Every Breath You Take
Author: Robert Winter
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: May 5, 2017
Heat Level: 3 - Some Sex
Pairing: Male/Male
Length: 221 pages
Genre: Romance, Thriller/Suspense


Add to Goodreads



Synopsis


When Zachary Hall leaves Utah for a job in Washington, it’s finally his chance to live as a gay man and maybe find someone special. In a bar he meets Thomas Scarborough, a man who seems perfect in and out of the bedroom. But Thomas never dates. He never even sleeps with the same man twice. Despite their instant connection, he can offer Zachary only his friendship, and Zachary is looking for more.

Thomas is tempted to break his own rules, but years before, he became the victim of a stalker who nearly destroyed his life. Even though his stalker died, Thomas obsessively keeps others at a distance. Despite his fascination with Zachary, he is unable to lower his barriers. Frustrated, Zachary accepts he will never have what he wants with Thomas and soon finds it with another man.

But young gay men in Washington, DC are being murdered, and the victims all have a connection to Thomas. Once again someone is watching Thomas’s every move. Can it be a coincidence? When the depraved killer turns his attention toward Zachary, Thomas must face the demons of his past—or lose his chance to open his heart to Zachary forever.



Purchase at Amazon




Meet the Author

Saturday, November 17, 2018

ARC Review: Defensive Play (Boys on the Brink) by Jamie Deacon

Defensive Play (Boys on the Brink, #2)
Blurb:
One glance is all it takes to bring his defenses crashing down…

Seventeen-year-old Davey has never made friends easily. Shy, geeky, crippled with social anxiety, he feels isolated from his peers, and only his position as defender for the school football team fills the void of loneliness. On the pitch, his deft footwork has earned him the respect and acceptance of his squad, though at a price. Desperate to hold onto this camaraderie, Davey conceals the truth from everyone, even his own family.

Then, during the annual Brookshire football tournament, his eyes meet those of a rival player across the field and a spark flares between them, one neither boy can deny. Adam is everything Davey longs to be—confident, popular, comfortable with his sexuality. Davey aches to explore their connection, to discover where it might lead, but how can he follow his heart and risk rejection by his teammates, the closest thing to friends he has ever known?


Todd's rating:




This short, 80'ish page, YA story was pretty damn adorably cute.

The story began with 17 y.o. footballer Davey locking eyes with a handsome opponent from their rival team, and he found it nearly impossible to look away, but he wasn't the only one.

They later ended up talking, briefly, before Davey hiked up his skirt-tails and ran away, without leaving so much as a glass slipper for young Adam to hold onto.

Although Davey wasn't the most comfortable teen in social situations, I'm not sure if I'd go as far as the blurb does to say his anxiety was full-on 'crippling'. Davey's fear of being found out seemed about on track with what I remembered myself as a teen, but no actual panic attacks to be found.

I really loved Adam and was happy to see that, despite a few bumps and bruises when coming out, he was still confident, popular even, and willing to go after what he wanted, which was our nerdy boy Davey.

ARC Review: Mr. Frosty Pants by Leta Blake

Blurb:
Frosty former friends get a steamy second chance in this Christmas gay romance!

Can true love warm his frozen heart?

When Casey Stevens went away to college four years ago, he ghosted on his straight best friend, Joel Vreeland. He hoped time and distance would lessen the unrequited affection he felt, but all it did was make him miss Joel more. Home for the holidays, Casey hopes they might find a way to be friends again. But Joel’s frosty reception reminds Casey of just how hard he had to fight to be Joel’s friend in the first place. It’s going to take a Christmas miracle to get past that cool façade again.

Joel isn’t as straight as Casey believes, and his years of pining for Casey have left him hurting and alone, caring for his abusive father and struggling to get by. Unable to trust anyone except his rescue dog—and with no reason to believe Casey is interested in him for more than a holiday fling—Joel’s icy heart might shatter before it can thaw.

Can Casey and Joel’s love overcome mistrust, parental rejection, class differences, and four long years apart? Mr. Frosty Pants is a stand-alone, Christmas gay romance by Leta Blake featuring a virgin hero, childhood friends-to-lovers, second chance romance, and romantically steamy scenes.


Dani's rating:

Mr. Frosty Pants is a holiday story and features Christmas trees, wreaths, ugly sweaters, and snow.

But it's more complicated than that.

When Casey left for college four years ago, he ghosted his friend Joel. Coming out to his snobby parents was hard enough. Casey didn't want to risk Joel's wrath. He didn't trust enough, even though he'd been in love with Joel for eons.

Joel is prickly and standoffish. He is not an easy character to like, but because the story is told in a dual POV, we see that Joel's sarcastic, aloof exterior hides a heart that's been bruised by his abusive father.

Joel wants nothing to do with Casey's offer to renew their friendship. But then Casey kisses him, and everything changes.

While Joel's father is truly despicable, Casey's parents are more complicated. I think they really wanted the best for Casey, even though they went about it the wrong way. The way Casey's dad treated Joel was unforgivable. And I kind of wanted to shake Joel for making a promise he never intended to keep, a promise he didn't want to keep.


Release Blitz: Mr Frosty Pants - Leta Blake



Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK  
Exclusive to Amazon and Available to Borrow in Kindle Unlimited

Length: 90,000 word approx.
Cover Design: Wicked Smart Design





Blurb

Can true love warm his frozen heart?



When Casey Stevens went away to college four years ago, he ghosted on his straight best friend, Joel Vreeland. He hoped time and distance would lessen the unrequited affection he felt, but all it did was make him miss Joel more. Home for the holidays, Casey hopes they might find a way to be friends again. But Joel’s frosty reception reminds Casey of just how hard he had to fight to be Joel’s friend in the first place. It’s going to take a Christmas miracle to get past that cool façade again.

Joel isn’t as straight as Casey believes, and his years of pining for Casey have left him hurting and alone, caring for his abusive father and struggling to get by. Unable to trust anyone except his rescue dog—and with no reason to believe Casey is interested in him for more than a holiday fling—Joel’s icy heart might shatter before it can thaw.

Can Casey and Joel’s love overcome mistrust, parental rejection, class differences, and four long years apart? Mr. Frosty Pants is a stand-alone, Christmas gay romance by Leta Blake featuring a virgin hero, childhood friends-to-lovers, second chance romance, and steamy mm first times.





Author Bio

Friday, November 16, 2018

Blogtour: Bigger Love by Rick R. Reed



Please welcome Rick R. Reed with 

Bigger Love 

the highly anticipated sequel to Big Love 



Blurb:

Truman Reid is Summitville High’s most out-and-proud senior. He can't wait to take his fierce, uncompromising self away from his small Ohio River hometown, where he’s suffered more than his share of bullying. He’s looking forward to bright lights and a big city. Maybe he’ll be the first gender-fluid star to ever win an Academy Award. But all that changes on the first day of school when he locks eyes with the most gorgeous hunk he’s ever seen.

Mike Stewart, big, dark-haired, and with the most amazing blue eyes, is new to town. He's quiet, manly, and has the sexy air of a lost soul. It’s almost love at first sight for Truman. He thinks that love could deepen when Mike becomes part of the stage crew for Harvey, the senior class play Truman's directing. But is Mike even gay? And how will it work when Truman's mother is falling for Mike’s dad?

Plus Truman, never the norm, makes a daring and controversial choice for the production that has the whole town up in arms. See how it all plays out on a stage of love, laughter, tears, and sticking up for one’s essential self.




Bigger Love is all about accepting who you are, embracing it, and telling the world, “If you have a problem with who I am, that’s your problem, not mine.”


It’s also about falling in love for the first time—as a teenager, on a school bus.



EXCLUSIVE EXCERPT:
Just One Look—How Truman Reid Experiences Love at First Sight


There was something about the guy that set Truman’s heart to racing, that erased every logical thought from Truman’s mind as all the blood in his body rushed south.


It wasn’t only the fact that he was gorgeous—which he was, with cropped black hair and a five o’clock shadow—but there was something about him that called to the nurturing side of Truman. Even at a glance and from this distance, there was something dark and brooding about him. It set him apart, making him both mysterious and alluring. For just a moment, everything around Truman silenced—the chatter and laughter of the other kids on the bus, the grumble of its engine, the whine of its brakes as it slowed to a stop, and the pneumatic whoosh of the doors opening.


Truman knew, somewhere in the back of his mind, that these sounds should be there, but for one brief, shining moment, all that existed was the boy.


He was at least six feet tall, probably a couple of inches above that. Broad shoulders. Beefy. To use one of Patsy’s terms, he was “strapping.” Unlike Truman he dressed not to attract attention to himself. He wore only a pair of faded Levi’s, a plain white crewneck T-shirt that had seen many washings, and a pair of very basic black canvas tennis shoes. Slung over one shoulder was a battered and faded red backpack.


Mesmerized, Truman watched as he made his way to the bus and then disappeared from view for an instant as he boarded. Truman snapped out of his reverie as he realized Alicia was staring at him as she stood a few people back in line. She stuck her tongue out as their eyes met. Truman chuckled. And he went right back to searching for just one more glimpse of that face.

Blogtour:Renewing Forever by Kelly Jensen




Please say hello to Kelly Jensen and 

Renewing Forever 

This Time Forever #2



Renewing Forever is the second of a series of standalone novels focused on older characters who think love has passed them by. Frank and Tom's story is a true second chance romance, reuniting childhood friends and first loves separated by an argument and thirty years of misunderstanding. I hope you enjoy reading about their renewed friendship and their plans for forever.




Small towns and second chances.

Simon, Frank, and Brian think love has passed them by. Each is facing down his fiftieth birthday—Simon in a few years, Frank next year, and Brian soon enough. Each has loved and lost. But for these men, everything old really is new again, and it’s only when they return to their roots that they’ll find their second chances and the happily ever after they’ve been waiting their whole lives for.

This time it’s forever.



This series includes:
Building Forever — releasing October 15, available now!
Renewing Forever — releasing November 12, available for preorder!
Chasing Forever — releasing December 10, available soon!



About this book:

Blurb:

A neglected resort, a lost chance at love, and one last chance to renew forever.

Frankie and Tommy once dreamed of traveling the world together. But when seventeen-year-old Frank kissed Tom, their plans ended with a punch to the jaw and Frank leaving town without looking back. 
Thirty years later, Frank’s successful career as a journalist is interrupted by his uncle’s death and the question of his inheritance—the family resort where his childhood dreams were built. When he returns to the Pocono Mountains, however, he finds a dilapidated lodge and Tommy, the boy he never forgot.

Tom’s been keeping the resort together with spit and glue while caring for Frank’s uncle, Robert—a man he considered father, mentor, and friend—and his aged mother, who he refuses to leave behind. Now Robert is gone, taking Tom’s job with him. And Frank is on the doorstep, wanting to know why Tom is still there and why the old lodge is falling apart.

But before they can rebuild the resort, they’ll have to rebuild their friendship. Only then can they renew the forever they planned all those years ago.



Get the book:


The Careers I Could Have Had
This edition of “The Careers I Could Have Had” has a happier ending than last time. To recap: in relation to Building Forever, the first book in my series, This Time Forever, I talked about how a sixth grade teacher squashed my dreams of being an architect. I actually went on to study Graphic Design.
After college, I worked as a finished artist and copy writer. I’ve also worked a lot of part time jobs in admin and marketing. And food service. We all do food service at some point, don’t we? Eventually, I got in to teaching, and I’ll talk about that in the third edition of this post! For now, though, I’ll talk about how I actually got into fiction writing.
Nearly fifteen years ago I signed up for a correspondence course. I indicated a strong interest in writing fiction—speculative fiction in particular. My tutor, however, steered me toward journalism, stating that there was no money to be made in fiction. As I quite liked the idea of learning to write articles and editorial pieces, and figured I could continue writing my short stories on the side, I agreed. To my surprise, I really enjoyed the course, and was published in several magazines by the time I graduated, with my first article returning a paycheck large enough to by myself a really nice laptop to dedicate to my new career. I also enjoyed the research, and the art of finding just the right angle for each piece. What I didn’t enjoy as time went on, though, was selling myself.
I switched to fiction and I still have to sell myself, but it’s a different market. It’s slower, and in some ways more forgiving. While journalism is very much representative of the present moment, fiction can be more reminiscent. And strange. So, for me, being able to transition to fiction writing meant I was finally able to pursue a dream.
When it comes to selling his self and his vision, Frank is a natural. Although he’s actually quite shy, Frank has a warm and inviting manner. He can laugh at himself, and often does, and has the knack of being able to make anyone feel like the absolute center of his attention. He’s also naturally curious, and has the focus required to hone his craft. As a journalist, he’s a success. More importantly, he enjoys what he does.
At the beginning of Renewing Forever, though, Frank is beset by a feeling of inertia. He no longer enjoys what he does as much as he used to. It’s not because he’s bored, though. More, it’s that he’s lost some of his perspective. His career has drifted sideways and he’s not interested in continuing to pursue that exact trajectory. He wants to return to the beginning—to the type of journalism that made his name and his career. Finding Tom, reconnecting with him, and exploring the options for the family resort will help him do just that.

Release Blitz: The Husband Gambit by LA Witt



Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK  

Exclusive to Amazon and Available to Borrow in Kindle Unlimited
Length: 95,000 words approx.
Cover Design: L.A. Witt




Blurb

Marry me for 1 year. Payment: $1.2 million.


Hayden Somerset is convinced the ad is a joke, but he responds anyway because, hello, $1.2 million. He’s broke, living in a tiny apartment with two roommates, and exhausted from praying his ancient car survives just one more week. His skyrocketing rent and crushing student loans aren’t helping either. At this point, there isn’t much Hayden wouldn’t do for that kind of cash.

The ad isn’t a joke. Jesse Ambrose is absolutely serious. His father, the charismatic patriarch of a powerful Hollywood dynasty, has his eye on politics, and he’s counting on California’s liberals and progressives to elect him. But Jesse knows what his father believes when cameras and voters aren’t around. As the election looms, he’ll do anything to force the man’s hand and show the public who Isaac Ambrose really is.

Anything, including marrying a stranger so his father will make good on his promise to disown Jesse if he ever takes a husband.

Now he just has to wait for his father to take the bait… and try not to accidentally fall in love with his fake husband.





Author Bio

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Author Of The Month - Leta Blake - Week Three


Welcome to our third week of celebrations for the amazing 





In this week's post, we're looking at the 90s Coming Of Age 4-book series, with Pictures Of You and You Are Not Me published so far, plus a personal story Leta has chosen to share. There's also another chance to win one of her books.


First up, Pictures Of You



Blurb:

Growing up gay isn’t easy. Growing up gay in Knoxville, Tennessee is even harder.

Eighteen-year-old Peter Mandel, a private school senior—class of 1991—is passionate about photography. Peter doesn’t have many friends, preferring to shoot pictures from behind the scenes to keep his homosexuality secret.

Enter Adam Algedi, a charming, worldly new guy who doesn't do labels, but does want to do Peter. Hardly able to believe gorgeous Adam would want geeky, skinny him of all people, Peter's swept away on a journey of first love and sexual discovery. But as their mutual web of lies spins tighter and tighter, can Peter find the confidence he needs to make the right choices? And will his crush on Daniel, a college acquaintance, open a new path?

Join Peter in the first of this four-part coming of age series as he struggles to love and be loved, and grow into a gay man worthy of his own respect.


Excerpt:

I leaned back in my chair as the familiar opening of Gloria Gaynor’s “I Will Survive” began.
Renée twirled onto the stage, gyrating, dancing, and lip-syncing like she meant every word, her face contorted into what appeared to be a combination of ecstasy and pain. I had to bite down really hard on my lip to keep from laughing, and I took huge gulps from my drink in hopes that more alcohol might make Renée’s performance more than hysterically unnerving.
I spared a thought for the fact that I’d consumed more illegal beverages in the time I’d known Adam than I ever had in my entire life up until that point. I wondered if that meant he was a bad influence. I’d never had one of those before.
I glanced around the club and chuckled into my drink. Who was I kidding by asking myself if Adam was a bad influence? Looking around, there was no question. Of course he was. And it was exciting. And kind of cool.
As the dancing became more heated, Renée began to rip off her clothes, made easy by Velcro holding on her skirt and blouse. Once she was down to a gold, glittery panty-like thing and a matching bra, Renée twirled feverishly as people lined up to stick dollar bills in the straps of her G-string.
I ducked my head to examine her crotch. Where the hell did she put it? It had to be there somewhere. But no, she was smooth. I took another long drink as I tried to imagine just how much strapping and taping went into that.
Four songs passed, and I took courage in my drink throughout. I didn’t feel like laughing anymore, but the idea of crawling up to the stage and pushing dollar bills into Renée’s underwear didn’t appeal to me either. I just sat and watched, averting my eyes whenever Renée looked directly at me. Being in the front row, I got a good look at all of Renée’s goods, like her little ass shaking around just three or four feet from my face. It was embarrassing and arousing.
After the song ended, Renée reached out toward the audience, and Barry walked up to hand her a microphone. She smoothed her hair a little and dabbed her face with a handkerchief someone tossed to her from the audience.
“Thank you, babies. Now, I’ve been kind and shown you my stuff, so break out the rest of your money, gentlemen and ladies! Mama needs some love!”
A smattering of laughter broke out in the crowd.
I wished I had another drink, and as if reading my mind, Renée looked over at my table, saying, “Krista, get this child a drink. He’s looking parched.” She was still breathing hard from her exertions, and every word she said into the microphone was followed by a violent puff of air. “Can’t have my naughty boy’s sweetie going without.”
Krista showed up with another drink by the time Renée had started her mini stand-up routine. It was bad. Luckily, it was laughably bad, and so most of the crowd cracked up in the right places, and no one was rude enough to heckle or boo her.
I kept sipping whatever it was Krista had delivered to me, so I was starting to feel a little woozy by the time Renée called out, “Bring me the naughty boy. He needs a whipping.”
The crowd cheered. Apparently, this part was a house favorite.
Adam’s head stuck out from behind the curtain, face flushed and his hair kind of wild. He blinked against the spotlight and seemed to search the room, but from the way he was squinting, I didn’t think he could really see anything.
“Get out here,” Renée yelled, and Adam stepped through the curtains wearing a white robe and dragging a chair behind him. He continued to scan the audience until Renée grabbed his arm and pointed at me. “There he is. I told you he’d be okay.”
Adam broke into a relieved grin when he saw me.
Renée took the chair and placed it in the middle of the stage, talking the whole time about how Adam was fresh meat, a little virgin boy, and all kinds of similar statements—whether to be funny, inflame, or incite, I wasn’t sure.
I didn’t feel too good. The alcohol seemed to be turning in my stomach, but I was emboldened enough to give Adam a long once-over. That’s when I realized he didn’t have on any pants—his ankles and feet were bare beneath the white material. But it wasn’t until Renée took him over her knee and lifted up the back of his robe that I realized he didn’t have anything on under there.
Adam was tall. To position his ass properly, he had to sprawl far over Renée’s legs, and his head and hands rested on the ground. He managed to turn and look at me, and he grinned a little before a loud crack sounded through the room. Adam’s eyes went wide and he jerked.
“That’s for being bad. The next is for being dirty.”
Crack.
Adam’s face went a little slack, and I gripped the glass in my hand hard, wincing for him.
“This is for being easy.”
Crack.
Adam looked over at me, eyes glazed and his cheeks flushed. I realized that he was getting turned on, and I felt my own body responding to the expression on his face. Unfortunately, feeling sweaty, sick, and turned on all at once wasn’t really a good combination.
“This is for being pretty.”
Crack.
“This is for being gay.”
Crack.
It really was a perverted little show. Nearly everyone in the room seemed to get off on the spankings, and the reasons given for them. Each new item Renée listed was met with ever-increasing screams of approval.
“And this is for liking it up the ass!”
Crack.
Adam jerked hard, and his face crumbled a little. I wondered if he’d had an orgasm or if he finally couldn’t take any more of the pain. My stomach churned, and the room became overly loud with the roaring appreciation of the crowd when Renée announced Adam had been sufficiently punished.
When he struggled up from her lap, I noticed he was breathing hard, and he grinned down at her with a silly expression. He waved at the crowd and then blew a kiss to me before rushing behind the curtain.


Get the book:




Book 2, You Are Not Me 


Blurb:

Follow Peter into the summer following his senior year to face new beginnings, new friends, and old baggage.

After a tumultuous final year of high school, Peter Mandel needs a break. It's the summer of 1991, and his secret relationship with his ‘best friend’ Adam Algedi is put on hold as Adam goes away to Italy for the summer. On the cusp of adulthood, Peter has a couple of months to explore who he is without Adam at his side.

Enter Daniel McPeak, a slightly older, out, responsible college guy with a posse of gay friends and an attraction for Peter. Drawn into the brave new world of the local gay club, Peter embarks on a whirlwind of experiences—good and bad—which culminate in a hotel room where he has to make the ultimate choice.

But Adam will come back eventually, and there are promises that have to be kept. As autumn draws near and college awaits, can Peter break free of the binds of twisted first love? And what exactly is Daniel's role in his life - a brief temptation, or something more?

Join Peter in the second book of this four-part coming of age series as he struggles to love and be loved, and grow into a gay man worthy of his own respect.

Excerpt:
Rome, May 29, 1991
Dear Peter the Eater,
I’m sitting at a café across from the Pantheon. It’s early on a Wednesday morning and I’m watching people go to work or the market. They’re all dressed to the nines compared to Americans and darting around on tiny motorbikes too.
Being in the States for almost a year has screwed with my perception of normal because everything about Rome used to seem “everyday” to me and now I can’t catch my breath because it’s all so awesome. Literally awe inspiring. Maybe because of you and your pictures, I’m seeing the city with new eyes. I know you’d have your camera glued to your face if you were here. Just imagining that makes me miss you even more. Maybe one day we can be in Rome together.
It’s crazy that only two days ago I was with you. Travel makes time strange. I wish we’d been able to be together before I left. I should have said no to that trip with Leslie’s family. I regret it now. You mean so much to me. A whole summer without you is too long.
Tell me you miss me too. Tell me you want me as much as I want you. Promise to wait for me to come back. It’ll be worth it. This fall, everything will be amazing. I’ll make sure things are different for us. Trust me. No more unhappiness. No more fights. Tell me you believe me, Peter.
But don’t tell me in a letter. My dad might find it and kill me. Keep the letters you send clean, okay? Like we’re brothers. Or priests. But not those kinds of priests. You know what I mean.
I’m going to mail this before I go back to the flat. So, no need to say Sunsphere as a code word. I’ll just say it: I love you and I miss you so much. I’ll try to call when I can.
Yours forever, until the Colosseum crumbles, until the moon falls from the sky,
Adam

The green lawn was lush under my bare feet as I walked to our mailbox, my blue cotton T-shirt stuck to my back and my dark, curly hair wildly frizzed. I hadn’t mowed the grass in a week, despite my father’s pointed hints, and sweat bees threatened my hairy legs, exposed beneath my knee-length cargo shorts.
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