Friday, March 22, 2019

Release Blitz: Upside Down by N.R. Walker



Upside Down
N.R. Walker
Publication date: March 21st 2019
Genres: Adult, LGBTQ+, Romance



Blurb:
Jordan O’Neill isn’t a fan of labels, considering he has a few. Gay, geek, a librarian, socially awkward, a nervous rambler, an introvert, an outsider. The last thing he needs is one more. But he when he realises adding the label ‘asexual’ might explain a lot, it turns his world upside down. 
Hennessy Lang moved to Surry Hills after splitting with his boyfriend. His being asexual had seen the end of a lot of his romances, but he’s determined to stay true to himself. Leaving his North Shore support group behind, he starts his own in Surry Hills, where he meets first-time-attendee Jordan. 
A little bewildered and scared, but completely adorable, Hennessy is struck by this guy who’s trying to find where he belongs. Maybe Hennessy can convince Jordan that his world hasn’t been turned upside down at all, but maybe it’s now—for the first time in his life—the right way up.


EXCERPT:

Context: Jordan is attending his first asexual support meeting, along with his best friend Merry, where Jordan finds the guy from his bus, whom he’s admired from afar and dubbed ‘Headphones Guy’ (Hennessy) is running the meetings.

Jordan
I didn’t even notice that the room had cleared out. Merry had pulled up a chair at my side, but Hennessy sat with his knees between mine, holding my hand while I cried.
I fucking cried.
Through my stupid, traitorous tears, I caught the end of a silent conversation between Merry and him, my Headphones Guy.
Hennessy.
And then Merry rubbed my back before she walked out, and Hennessy squeezed my hand. “She’s just gone to get you a drink of water,” he said gently.
“I don’t know why I’m crying,” I said, wiping my face with my free hand.
“Because it can be overwhelming,” he said. His voice was calm and soft. “Because it can be life-affirming and scary as hell, all at the same time.”
I nodded. “I don’t want another label, you know? Because I have enough. I have more than enough. Too many, probably, you know for a geeky book-nerd gay man with so many levels of social awkwardness Freud would need an elevator, but the labels fit. And I hate that they fit. Everything that was said here tonight was like it was said for me, like I was saying those things. I didn’t want this to happen,” I said, shaking my head, fighting more tears. “I wanted to come here and, well, that’s not exactly true. I didn’t want to come here at all; it was Merry’s idea. She suggested that I look into what being asexual meant. After my 683rd failed attempt at a relationship, she thought maybe I should see if I ticked any boxes on the ‘How To See If You Could Be Asexual’ questionnaire on Teen Vogue, and after I realised that I could almost tick all the boxes, I decided I didn’t want or need another label. So then I had to come here tonight to shut her up. I was going to prove her wrong and then I could go on living my best life being not asexual but just a gay man who didn’t actually want to have sex. A socially awkward, geeky book-nerd gay man,” I amended through more tears, “who doesn’t actually want to have sex. I’m sorry for crying. I wasn’t expecting the emotional dump, but I wasn’t expecting to feel so… lost and found. Like I once was lost but now I’m found, kind of like the song, which is cheesy as fuck and I didn’t mean it to sound like that. I just didn’t realise how hard I’d been trying to fit in with the real world, trying to be normal, when my normal was here all along. Because I really am asexual and it hit me like a metric fuckton of bricks that there’s actually nothing wrong with me.”
And then there were more tears.
“Because that’s my truth, even if I thought there was something wrong with me, and fuck knows I’ve been told there was, many times,” I said, wiping my face. “But there’s not. I’m asexual, and that’s my motherfucking truth whether I like it or not.”

Release Blitz: Clean Break by Erin McLellan

RELEASE BLITZ




Please welcome Erin McLellan with 

Clean Break 



Series: Farm College Series #2
Publisher: Self-published
Release Date (Print and Ebook): March 19, 2019
Subgenre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance, College Romance, M/M
Warnings: explicit sex including mild kink; explicit language; instances and /or discussion of racism, homophobia, and transphobia; depiction of anxiety and OCD; consumption of alcohol; character with a deceased parent; lots of insects.



Blurb:

Connor’s To-Do List:• Learn to accept my future on the family farm• Be social, to a degree• Make a secret bucket list• Have a real conversation with Travis Bradford
Travis’s To-Do List:• Get into my top law school• Get the hell out of Elkville, Oklahoma• Stay focused on my dreams and goals—no crushes, no distractions• Get spanked by hot and perfectly fussy farm boy, Connor Blume
Travis and Connor do not like each other, but after being paired together in Entomology 101, their mutual hostility explodes into secret after-class hookups and unexpected feelings. With graduation looming near and their careers taking them in different directions, they’ll have to decide if a future together is worth adjusting their to-do lists and letting go of their carefully laid plans.



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Excerpt:

I was frozen, arms and legs heavy with desire or shock. I wasn’t sure which. I wanted Connor to keep kissing me, and I wanted him to stop right fucking now.
He must have sensed my unease because he pulled back and stared at me. My vision had adjusted to the dim light, so I could make out the muddy hazel of his eyes and the way his jaw ticked. He had faint acne scars on his cheeks that I’d never noticed, giving his face a rugged quality that was almost offset by all his adorable freckles.
“I’m sorry. I should have asked you first,” he said.
“It’s fine,” I whispered. My voice was shot.
“Can I kiss you again?”
This was the weirdest day. First, I’d discovered I was going to get a pet cockroach, and now the guy who I’d lost an entire semester pining after was asking permission to kiss me in a closet. There was a metaphor in there somewhere, but I was not in the right mind to analyze it.
I was curious. And he was sexy as all fuck. Maybe because he was so repressed and stoic? I wanted to be the one to unravel him.
“I suppose,” I said.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Author Of The Month - Nicky James - Week Three


Welcome to our third week of celebrations for the amazing






In this week's post, we will take a look at the Trials Of Fear series, plus a personal story Nicky has chosen to share. There's also another chance to win one of her books.



First up, Owl's Slumber

Blurb:

Imagine what life would be like if panic ruled your world at the mere thought of going to bed at night.

For as long as he can remember, Finnley Hollins has been crippled by his extreme phobia of sleep. Every night is a battle, and every morning isn’t without consequences. The root cause is something he’s ashamed to admit to anyone. It’s his war, and he will fight it alone.

When an unexpected turn of events lands the stunningly gorgeous Aven Woods at Finnley’s place of business, his life gets turned upside down.

All it would take is one night together for his secret to be exposed. Finnley wasn’t prepared to fall in love. More so, he wasn’t prepared for his phobia to completely consume his life. Not only is it affecting his job and his relationship, but now it’s affecting his health. What will it take for Finnley to finally admit he needs help?


Excerpt:

The plan was for Aven to pick me up at five for a top-secret date I knew nothing about. No matter how much I’d begged, he wouldn’t share anything. My sole instructions were to dress comfortably and warm.
I was determined to be more alert for our date that time, so I popped two Adrafinil and downed two Monsters before he showed up. Anything to get my blood flowing.
At a quarter past four, while I was fixing my hair and brushing my teeth, my phone rang. The screen told me it was Aven, and for a brief moment, my heart plummeted thinking he might be canceling.
“Hello?”
“Quick, I need your shoe size.”
I pulled my phone back and stared at it before returning it to my ear. “Say what now?”
“Your shoe size. It’s important. Just don’t ask me why. I can’t tell you.”
“Aven, is this some underhanded way of figuring out how big my dick is? Because it’s very grade school. I mean, asking flat out would be weird, too, I get that, but shoe size?”
There was chuckling on the other end of the line, and it made me smile.
“Yes, Finn, I’m standing here in the drug store looking to buy condoms, and I realized, I don’t know how big your dick is, so I thought I’d call and play it subtle.”
A week of back and forth texting had made us much more relaxed with each other, and I found Aven was not as elite as I’d first thought. Yes, he worked a killer, high-end job which made first impressions deceiving, but he was quick-witted and funny, two things I liked in a man. Not to mention down to earth, tall, dark, and seriously handsome.
“Shit. We’re in big trouble then.”
“And why is that?” I could hear the humor in his voice. Apparently, his urgency to know my shoe size was all but forgotten.
“You can size up condoms for me all you want, but I’m all bottom. And two bottoms together; I sense trouble on the horizon.”
There was a long pause when I could only hear Aven breathing, and I cringed, hoping I hadn’t gone too far. We’d teased dirty all week, but that was perhaps a little blunt. But what if my offhanded remark hit the nail on the head? What if…
“That won’t be a problem.” His voice was breathy and husky all at the same time, and I could have sworn I heard him audibly swallow. “Shoe size, Finnley. I’m in public for crying out loud. Do you know what you’re doing to me?”
The joking fun was gone, and a thick cloud of lust had taken its place. My skin tingled hearing the thirst in his tone.
“Eleven.”
He cleared his throat before he spoke again as though trying to tame the brewing need seeping through the phone. It didn’t work. “I’ll be there shortly.”



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Book 2 in the series, Shades Of Darkness 


Blurb:

Six years ago, an unforeseen incident turned Rory Gallagher’s life upside down. Now, he lives in darkness, fearing the sun, fearing light altogether. Rory has developed Heliophobia. As a creature of the night, Rory has learned to adapt to his unusual lifestyle. He draws comfort from shadows and safety from the nighttime hour. Unfortunately, his mind is the darkest place of all, and the one place he can’t seem to escape.

Finding help isn’t easy, but when Rory registers with a local, twenty-four-hour counseling center, the man he meets surprises him in more ways than one. Young psychology student, Adrian Anderson, is Rory’s complete opposite. How will this smart, preppy, do-gooder ever get through to the man with a chip on his shoulder who has learned to hate the world?

It doesn’t take long for Rory to discover they have something horrific in common. Despite rules and regulations, this sad detail helps them form a bond neither of them expected. Could Adrian be the shining light Rory needs to dispel the darkness for good?


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Book 3, Touch Of Love

Blurb:

Touch is a fundamental part of human interaction. What happens when that simple pleasure causes immeasurable fear?

Ireland Hayes has fought an uphill battle with his phobia most of his life, believing "normal" is unachievable.
Every time things look up, unexpected triggers set him right back to square one where he needs to start over.
When he falls, he falls hard.

Work is impossible.
Love is impossible.
Life is impossible.

Raven Kingsley takes life as it comes. Not many things bother this free-spirited man. He is passionate, vibrant, and easy-going. He’s the friend who’s always there, and the sympathetic shoulder for anyone in need.
He works hard.
Loves with his entire heart and soul.
And believes life is always possible.

Ireland doesn't have much faith in relationships. The past has proven many times that he isn't worthy of love. Everyone gives up. Will Raven prove different? When the walls come crashing down, will love prevail? Or are life, love, and happiness truly meant for someone else?

Excerpt:

Giving up on the game, I closed my laptop and stood, intent on getting ready for bed. Before I headed to my room, I caught myself wandering across the living room instead and stopping at the couch. To anyone else, my thoughts and actions would probably be classified as stupid, but to me, they were challenging in their own way. I picked up Raven’s gray hoodie, its weight psychologically more prominent and significant than its actual physicality.
He’d worn this article of clothing. Against his body. Ran in it. Touched it. Sweat in it.
Somewhere in my messed-up thought process, it was like an indirect way of touching Raven without touching him. What rocked me off balance was that I didn’t even know it was something I’d unconsciously wanted. In a week, we’d developed a sort of shaky friendship. I wasn’t blind to how drawn I was to his good looks or charm, but I had no idea until that moment that there was a pull for more. And that knowledge was a painful blow to the chest. A concrete reminder of how many struggles I still faced after years of therapy. Developing anything with Raven was about as impossible as me ever achieving normal.
I brought the hoodie to my face and breathed in the lingering scent of spices, sweat, and all things Raven. A smell that jolted and tugged at something in my core. Studiously, I ran my fingers over the fabric, imagining in a backward sort of way that I was touching Raven in every place his hoodie had touched him.

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Blogtour: I'm Not Who You Think I Am by Felicitas Ivey



Please welcome Felicitas Ivey with 

I'm Not Who You Think I Am 




Blurb:

Mykayla's parents' marriage is in trouble, but they're working on it. Unfortunately for Mykayla, that means she's getting shipped off to Boston to spend her summer with Uncle Yushua while they work out their issues. Mykayla has issues of her own-like her confusion about her sexuality, or apparent lack of it-that she'd like to explore alongside her best friend, Xiu.The situation at her uncle's house is weird to say the least.

There's something off about his coworkers-aside from the fact that they won't go away. Things go from strange to stranger when a supernatural being shows up to protect Mykayla from someone he calls the Shadow Pharaoh. Sutekhgen is a sorcerer who never made it to the afterlife, with a huge Set Beast as a companion... and the mistaken assumption that Mykayla is the reincarnation of his lost romantic partner. She doesn't know what's worse: being caught in a metaphysical conflict between ancient gods or being stuck with a pushy jerk who doesn't know the meaning of personal boundaries.


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Whenever I start these types of posts, I spend time debating what I'm going to write. Mainly because I don't know what to say, because I don't know how much of my personal life I want to write about. My bio covers the basics of my life, mostly, and I don't want to overshare on the Internet. Basically I have a day job, which supports the three cats which own me.
Cats and writers go together like wine and cheese. Most of the writers I know have a cat or two as part of their family. And all those cats are spoiled rotten replacement children.  I grew up with cats, and except for an odd week or two, I've never been without one in my life. So here are some of the more memorable cats I've lived with and how they've come into my life.
Devilkitty Smaugu-Smaugu was my husband Russ's fault. And everyone in the family was very quick to remind him of that when he complained about him!  Russ had made the foolish move of mentioning to me that there was a stray kitten at work one Saturday morning. The kitten was trying to get into the building he worked at MIT. I was a little worried, because it was one of the buildings on Memorial Drive and pictured an eventual flat kitten.
Russ worked third shift, so when he woke up that afternoon, I wrangled permission to find said kitten and I did. I picked up Smaugu as he sauntered out of the bushes, complaining how long to took me to pick up.
The kitten started out with the name Smaug, after the dragon in the Hobbit, long before the live action movies had come out. He got the Devilkitty nickname after he levitated five feet in the air because the bag monster was going to get him (It had been attached to his tail somehow and was following him about before I untangled it).   Smaugu came about because all the anime I was watching at the time and the Japanese have a custom of adding vowel to the end of a name.
Smaugu lived a long and happy life before, passing away in his sleep after many years of dominating my husband, Russ. My cat population was down to none after that, so I was soon looking for new companions.
Tamazusa and Mason are sisters and my current owners cats. I've had them about eight years. Both are very demanding ladies and want my attention, lap and pets, whenever I'm home. I named them after two characters in my first novel, "Dreamlands" even though Mason is an elegant tuxedo lady cat and the character Mason is neither, while her sister is a sleek black car named after a sorceress.
I got the two of them from co-workers of my sister. They had who had an abundance of unfixed cats and needed to get rid of a few. They asked if my sister if I needed a cat, and after a couple of weeks of emailing and using my sister as a go-between, I chose the two I was interested in. To adopt them, I went one night to where my sister worked, because they all work the night shift and handed her two empty cat carriers To pass on to them. The next night I went back and before her shift, my sister handed me two full carriers. It's caused a lot of my friends to comment on the 'drug dealer' nature of my cat acquisition. I did think security was going to bust us, but it never happened.
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