Conflict in BLACK LACE–Excerpt and Giveaway

BannerTemplateHi there! I’m helping to spread the word on a newly released novella from L.J. Hamlin. BLACK LACE is a contemporary M/M rock romance that features a band coming apart at it’s seams…

Check out the tidbit below, and enter to win a copy for yourself!

blacklace1400About the book:
Jed Chance is the lead singer of Black Lace, a very successful rock band. It’s gone through a few lineup changes: first, Jed was outed by a former bandmate, and now they’re looking for another new member. That’s when Donnie comes to audition.

Donnie is ten years younger than Jed, and he’s beautiful, with a complicated past. He instantly gets a crush on Jed, but is afraid to act on it. Still, Jed and Donnie can’t keep away from each other. But getting together isn’t their only problem: Jed has attracted a dangerous stalker, who means to do Jed serious harm.

How about a little taste?

Reading about yourself on the Internet might be a bad idea — masochistic even — but during the audition break, Jed has the urge to see the latest gossip. He’s found an article that starts with a recap of Black Lace’s history; his history.

Lead singer of Black Lace, Jed Chance, shocked the world when he confirmed that he is, in fact, gay. Rumors started when ex-Black Lace member Bert Goode sold his story about his affair with the married man.

Jed winces, because it hadn’t been that simple, and because Bert’s betrayal still hurts, even though it’s been nine years. Jed skips over the speculation of why he’d played it straight, marrying Jamie Pierce, his now ex-wife and manager.

At the time, it seemed like the scandal would be the end of Black Lace, but two years after they went on “hiatus” the band was back with a new guitarist, and a new attitude. Mrs. Cherry Lee was a welcome addition to the band, and a breath of fresh air. The once great rock band was back again, delivering some memorable music.

But now Cherry Lee has retired from the band to spend more time with her family, having given birth to three children during her seven years in the band. Cherry Lee and the rest of her bandmates all claim to be parting on good terms. But what this reporter wants to know is what will happen to Black Lace now that Cherry Lee is gone.

The band’s record company claims this isn’t the end of Black Lace; there will be another tour soon and even a new album. Who will step into Cherry Lee’s shoes? And will it be the same? Better? Worse? Watch this space.


Interested? You  can find BLACK LACE on Torquere Books and Amazon.


Click the Rafflecopter link below for your chance to win an e-copy of BLACK LACE.
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Good luck and keep reading my friends!

Meet the author:
L.J. Hamlin is a twenty-something (getting older every day) author, who has been writing all her life, mainly in notebooks no one else ever saw. Then she discovered M/M groups online and was encouraged by friends to share her stories. After a while (and with a lot of pushing) she grew brave enough to attempt getting published. Now she shares her stories with others and hopes never to stop. L.J. loves cats and pretty much all animals, is a collector of many things, often weird, but most of all books.

Catch up with LJ on her blog, Facebook, Pinterest and twitter.




Mystery and Murder in The DARK HEART OF MAGIC–A Review

Hi there! Today I’m sharing a paranormal YA adventure/romance from Jennifer Estep. The DARK HEART OF MAGIC is a book I really enjoyed. It’s got a cool fantasy story with neat world-building, and a realistic revenge plot.

Dark Heart of Magic (Black Blade, #2)About the book:
Something Wicked This Way Comes…
As a thief, I stick to the shadows as much as possible. But when the head of the Sinclair Family picks me to compete in the Tournament of Blades, there’s no escaping the spotlight—or the danger.

Even though he’s my competition, Devon Sinclair thinks I have the best shot at winning what’s supposed to be a friendly contest. But when the competitors start having mysterious “accidents,” it looks like someone will do anything to win—no matter who they hurt.

As if I didn’t have enough to worry about, mobster Victor Draconi is plotting against Devon and the rest of my friends, and someone’s going around Cloudburst Falls murdering monsters. One thing’s for sure. Sometimes, humans can be more monstrous than anything else…

My Review:
This is the second book in a series, but I read it out of order and had no problems with the storyline.

This book is set in the fantastical realm of Cloudburst Falls, West Virginia in a contemporary time period with the addition of magic, mobs and mayhem. Okay, so really it’s only magic that’s a game changer. In this bookscape, there are people who possess magical Talents, like super speed, strengths, divination etc. There are also magical creatures–which are highly concentrated in the mountainous area of Clouburst Falls, or so says the tourism board. Still, lochnesses, tree trolls and copper crushers are part of the fauna, and one must know how to deal with these creatures in order to get on.

Lila Merriweather is not who she claims to be, and there are few who know the secret of her identity. She was born Lila Sterling, child of Serena Sterling, a powerful woman who fled Cloudburst Falls after Lila’s father was murdered by his benefactor, Victor Draconi–head of the Draconi Family and the same dude who later murdered Serena, stealing her magical Talents.

Lila wants to avenge her parents, but she’s only 17 and still honing her magic, plus she knows it would be a suicide mission to take out the head of the most powerful Family in Cloudburst Falls. Instead, she’s the personal bodyguard of Devon Sinclair–son of Claudia Sinclair and second-in-command of the Sinclair Family. Lila recently saved Devon from certain death and is just getting used to her new position in the Family, as she’s been living on her own and stealing for a living since her mother’s murder four years ago. Also, she’s totally gaga for Devon, and he for her, but she holds off on making anything physical because she has lost too many people close to her to let Devon get in close.

This book is the set-up before the major clash between the Sinclair and Draconi families. We learn, intimately, just how underhanded the Draconis can be–and how ruthless some of these people in this world are.

The set-up is a tournament, which is meant to showcase all the Talents of the Families to themselves and the tourists. It’s a major attraction and has been won by Deah Draconi for the past two years. Deah’s not the biggest or strongest, but her mimic magic is a distinct edge. Devon and Lila are part of the competition this year, as is Katia Volkov–an outsider who comes down from New York to compete. She lost to Deah the past two years and is angling to win it all.

I really liked the bit of mystery that was woven into the story. Lila and Devon notice that the magical monsters are moving around, coming out from their normal habitats into areas that are more highly populated. This seems to be a defensive move because they also find many carcasses strewn about the woods, with suspicious markings and clearly malicious stab wounds. I had the culprit and motive pinpointed early on, but that didn’t mean I wasn’t happy with the reveal. Also, it made for some good suspense.

Lila has a lot to learn about the Family life, but she embraces the affection and support given so freely by the Sinclairs. Her mother and Claudia had been best friends in their girlhood, and Claudia is happy to have Lila with her. Of course, there are lots of secrets about Lila’s mother, and who best to relate them than Serena’s sister–not that Lila knew she had an aunt. Or a cousin, one who is poised to become her enemy and her ally. That twist was really excellent, and also sets up the next book stunningly.

Lila is a dark horse to win the tournament, but she performs exceedingly well, and it’s hers to lose. I won’t reveal any of that, but the depth of empathy Lila exhibits in the course of competition made her truly likable as a character. I liked that the love story between Lila and Devon is a side issue, one that Lila continues to set to the side, because her duty lies elsewhere. She has the right mindset, and I was glad that she behaved like a woman with a brain, and also a heart. I’m looking forward the next book.

Interested? You can find DARK HEART OF MAGIC on Goodreads, Amazon and Barnes & Noble–and probably your local library, too.  I received a review copy of this book via NetGalley.

About the Author:

Jennifer Estep is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, prowling the streets of her imagination in search of her next fantasy idea.

Jennifer writes the Elemental Assassin adult urban fantasy series for Pocket. Books in the series are SPIDER’S BITE, WEB OF LIES, VENOM, TANGLED THREADS, SPIDER’S REVENGE, BY A THREAD, and WIDOW’S WEB. THREAD OF DEATH, an e-novella, is also available.


DEADLY STING, the eighth book, is set to be released on March 26, 2013.

Jennifer also writes the Mythos Academy young adult urban fantasy series for Kensington.

Books in the series are TOUCH OF FROST, KISS OF FROST, and DARK FROST. CRIMSON FROST, the fourth book, is set to be released on Dec. 24, 2012.

FIRST FROST, a prequel e-story to the series, is available as a download. HALLOWEEN FROST, an e-short story, is available in the ENTANGLED e-anthology.

Jennifer is also the author of the Bigtime paranormal romance series. Books in the superhero-themed series are KARMA GIRL, HOT MAMA, JINX, and NIGHTINGALE. A KARMA GIRL CHRISTMAS, an e-story, is also available.

Excerpts, free short stories, and more information on Jennifer’s books can be found on her website. Catch her also on Facebook and twitter.

Thanks for popping in and keep reading my friends!


Hi there! Today I’m sharing a review for a heart-wrenching M/M Christmas romance from L.C. Chase. Featuring a dying artist and a dead-inside attorney, A FORTUNATE BLIZZARD is a story about finding love at the best, worst, time. It was just so touching…it really got to me.

A Fortunate BlizzardAbout the book:
There are worse things than being stranded in a blizzard.

Artist Trevor Morrison has always appreciated the little things in life, treating each day as a gift. And with good reason: he’s been on the transplant-recipient list for too long now. When he learns just how numbered his days truly are, he resolves not to take them for granted. But he won’t be unrealistic, either—which means romantic commitments are off the table.

Marcus Roberts seems to have it all. He’s handsome, financially sound, and on the fast track to partnership at a prestigious law firm. In reality, though, his drive for success has meant no time for friends or relationships. Add in the fact that his family discarded him long ago, and he’s facing yet another holiday season alone.

When the biggest snowstorm to hit Colorado in decades leaves Marc and Trevor stranded at the same hotel, a chance encounter and a night of passion leads to more than either of them expected. Finding comfort in each other is a welcome surprise, but time is not on their side. Either they find a way to beat the odds, or they lose each other forever.

My Review:
Oh. Man. This one got me right in the feels.

Trevor is a successful artist in the end stage of renal disease. He’s been on dialysis for the past seven years in the hopes of finding a suitable donor, but his kidney function is failing and he probably has less than a year to live, even with dialysis. He’s 39 and facing his mortality. It’s creeping up on what will likely be his last Christmas with his large and loving family, but his flight is cancelled when a blizzard grinds all transportation around Denver to a halt.

Marc is a driven attorney, hell-bent on making partner at 38. He’s sacrificed his entire adult life to be the kind of son his homophobic mother would be proud of, only to note that he has no life except work. Stranded in the white out, he makes his way to a nearby hotel and books a room for the night. Seeing Trevor in the cafe, Marc is immediately attracted. His invitation to sit and join him becomes a long conversation and a further invite to share his room once Trevor confesses that he was unable to get a room due to a sell-out.

Neither man is really open to more than one night’s solace, despite their incendiary passion. Trevor hasn’t had a partner for years, and he’s had even less of a libido for most of that time. Something about Marc stirs him, however. In the cold light of day neither Marc nor Trevor can admit they have more than lust boiling along, even if it’s true. That said, Trevor doesn’t want to reveal his illness and Marc knows a relationship will detract from his workaholic ways. Still, Marc can’t abide with Trevor spending his Christmas Eve, and maybe longer, on a couch in the hotel’s lobby. He invites Trevor to his beautiful and barren home outside Boulder.

Trevor’s reluctant to let any connection build between himself and Marc, but it happen anyway. They spend a fantastic Christmas together, Trevor coming clean about his illness and prognosis when Marc presses him for more than their three day fling when he returns from visiting his family. It is bittersweet and melancholy and heart-wrenching and wonderful that these two lonely souls find a spark in such dire times.

I fully enjoyed the resolution to this one, which, I will state firmly, was an HEA. Marc’s selfless offering of himself helped him to realize all that he had to offer others, and allowed him to break free of his self-loathing. I really liked how he engaged himself with his colleagues and found the best way to handle his very sad situation. Trevor is a man who has resolved himself on imminent death. He’s afraid to hope one more, probably last, time. And it shows. He does find the courage to accept Marc’s lifeline, however, and it proves the adage that life is always darkest before the dawn.

I just plain loved this. It’s a well-told strangers-to-lovers story that doesn’t ooze sap, despite the medical realities of the plot. The Christmas aspect was balanced, with high and low points–love, loss, isolation, acceptance. I will admit to shedding a tear, or three. As a person with an even rarer blood type than Trevor, I sympathized with his plight. (I may B- but I will always be positive!) There aren’t too many sexytimes, but they are all about the feels. Highly recommend!

Interested? You can find A FORTUNATE BLIZZARD on Goodreads, Riptide Publishing, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, All Romance Ebooks, and iBooks. I received a review copy of this book via NetGalley.

L.C. ChaseAbout the Author:
Cover artist by day, author by night, L.C. Chase is a hopeless romantic, free spirit, and adventure seeker who loves hitting the open road just to see where it takes her. When not road tripping or writing about beautiful men falling love, L.C. can be found designing book covers featuring said beautiful men, drawing, horseback riding, or hiking the trails with her goofy four-legged buddy.

You can link up with LC online on her website, Goodreads, Facebook and twitter.

Thanks for popping in, and keep reading my friends!


butterflydreamsbannerHi there! I’m sharing a teaser for BUTTERFLY DREAMS, a contemporary romance from A. Meredith Walters. This is a story about learning to love beyond one’s fears and releases tomorrow.

bdcoverAbout the book:

In a powerful romance hailed as “heartbreaking, real, and breathtakingly beautiful” by Stacey Lynn, New York Times bestselling author A. Meredith Walters tells the story of a troubled young woman and the unforgettable guy who teaches her to live—and love—to the fullest.
She’s waiting to die. . . . Corin Thompson is paralyzed by her obsession with mortality. Having lost both of her parents, she is terrified by the idea that she too will die young, and she loses control at any sign of illness. But when Corin connects with someone who has survived a very real brush with death, she begins to see the world in a whole new way.

He’s learning to live. . . . As Corin struggles under the weight of her neuroses, Beckett Kingsley is attempting to rebuild a life that feels all too temporary. With the ever-present threat of heart failure never far from his mind, he just wants to make the most of whatever time he has left. And that means pursuing the girl he never expected to find.

Together, Corin and Beckett finally learn to let go of their fears and take solace in everyday pleasures. Who knows what the future holds? After all, nothing lasts forever—the only promise they have is right now.

Advance praise for Butterfly Dreams

“All the feels: poignant, funny, sad, beautiful, and inspiring! Your own belly butterflies will take flight.”New York Times bestselling author Katy Evans

“A. Meredith Walters is the author I turn to when I want to get sucked into a beautiful story that packs an emotional punch.”New York Times bestselling author Sawyer Bennett

Butterfly Dreams is one of the most poignant books I’ve read all year. It’s heartbreaking, real, and breathtakingly beautiful. A. Meredith Walters weaves a story that draws you in from the very first page and refuses to let you go even once it’s finished.”—Stacey Lynn, author of the Nordic Lords series

“The ending nearly killed me, but I survived. I read this book in one sitting, and what a roller coaster of a story. The author did an amazing job. . . . I found myself unable to put the book down.”—The Book Hookup

How about a little taste?

My doorbell rang.


I looked at the clock and realized it was already 7:30.

So that meant it was Beckett on the other side of the door.


I looked down at my half-naked body.


And then I started freaking out.

“I’ll be right there!” I yelled.

Should I let him in?

But I was practically naked!

I couldn’t let him see me like this!

Maybe I should own it. Shake my hips and let him get a look at the goods.

Like that would ever happen.

Crap, what was I going to wear?

I grabbed a pair of jeans from my floor and wiggled them on, not really paying attention to which ones they were.

I reached into my closet and pulled the closest shirt off the rack. I tied my hair into a ponytail and slipped on a comfortable pair of ballet flats.

I hoped Beckett hadn’t planned on five-star dining because I was dressed more for a McDonalds milkshake before hanging with the bowling league.

“Sorry,” I said, out of breath, opening the door and letting Beckett inside.

“I was starting to think I needed to break in and make sure you hadn’t gotten stuck in the toilet or something.” Beckett looked damn near perfect in a dark pair of jeans and button-up blue shirt the same color as his eyes.

He had even gotten a haircut. Way to make me feel like a total underachiever in the getting ready department, buddy.

“Looks like you cut yourself,” I said, indicating the piece of toilet paper stuck to his chin.

“Fuck. I forgot about that,” he muttered, pulling it off, looking embarrassed.

“You should have left it there. It’s cute,” I teased, putting on my black wool coat.

“You ready?” he asked.

“As I’ll ever be.” I gave him a wide smile and he laughed.

“I’m not taking you to your death by firing squad. You could act a bit more excited.”

I jumped up and down, clapping my hands together. “OMG, Beck! I can’t wait!” I gasped.

“Is that better?” I asked, closing my apartment door behind me and locking it.

“Much.” Beckett leaned down and I swear he was checking out my ass.

“Excuse me, but what in the hell are you doing?” I demanded.

“Are you aware that the Cheshire cat is on your right butt cheek?”

I craned my body to get a look at what he was talking about. And sure enough, there was a bright purple patch with the damn Cheshire cat on my derriere.

“I must have picked up the wrong jeans,” I groaned. These were my hanging-out-doing-laundry jeans. Not meant to be seen by anyone but myself and the cat.

“I was in a rush. I couldn’t figure out what to wear. It was stressful,” I tried to explain, pulling my coat down over my feline-covered bum.

“The last thing I want is to stress you out, Cor-Cor.”

I smacked his arm. “I thought I warned you about using that damn nickname,” I threatened.

“I show up with toilet paper stuck to my face and you have a cat on your butt. I think we make a pretty awesome pair,” Beckett snickered, unlocking his car.

A note from the author:

I know that there will be a lot of readers out there who will get annoyed with Corin. She’s hard to like. She neurotic. She’s a total head case. She has so many issues that she isn’t likable right away. But this was done completely on purpose. Corin’s issues are realistic. There are so many people out there who struggle with that particular type of anxiety every single day. I felt it was important to portray her this way in order to make her change as she falls in love with Beckett more pronounced, more vivid. I just encourage readers to be patient with Corin. Don’t be too harsh on her for having walls and for being rude. She’s a tough cookie because she was made that way. Her experiences have defined her. But she’s one of the truest characters I’ve ever written. 

Interested? You can pick up BUTTERFLY DREAMS on Amazon (US, UK) Barnes and Noble, iBooks, and Kobo.

ameredithwalters - CopyAbout the author:

A. Meredith Walters is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of new adult and contemporary romance including the Find You in the Dark, Bad Rep, Reclaiming the Sand, and Twisted Love series. She also writes psychological thrillers under the pen name A.M. Irvin.

The Virginia native currently lives in England with her husband and daughter.

You can find Ms. Walters on her website, Facebook, and twitter.

InkSlinger PR Blogger Banner - New

Who Doesn’t Want LOVE IN UNIFORM!

Hi there! I’m spreading the word on a sexy anthology of contemporary M/M romance. LOVE IN UNIFORM is a collection of stories all centered on guys in gear getting it on. Check out all the great authors involved, and be sure to enter the giveaway below!

loveinuniform1400About the book:
There’s just something about a man in uniform…whether it’s the delivery man bringing a special package to your door, the airline attendant taking care of your every need, or the cop with a set of handcuffs on his belt and a gleam in his eye, Love in Uniform provides fodder for every fantasy.

The Encounter – Hoping to escape the hot dance floor at a crowded club, a pilot finds himself wandering a dark secluded hallway. He’s pleased to see a table, but he’s startled when a shadow moves. Suddenly face to face with his ideal man candy, the pilot discovers the beauty of strangers and the thrill of sex in public places.

Wishing on the Perseid – Zach Johnson went looking for an adventure in the Rocky Mountains before settling into grad school. Little did he know Park Ranger Ryan Jenkins was exactly what he was looking for.

Special Delivery – An unexpected phone call turns Camden’s boring day off into a potential disaster when he ends up taking his cousin’s delivery shift with Axel, the tattooed hunk he dreams about. But Axel’s got a plan…and a special delivery that’ll leave Camden wanting more.

Westward Avenue Matchmaker – EMT Peter is getting tired of being called to Westward Avenue again and again for Mrs McKinney’s kitchen fires, but the chance to flirt with an attractive fireman makes it all worthwhile.

On the Wing – Traveling the world for work doesn’t leave a lot of time to find love on the ground. But maybe on the wing.

Let it Hurt – All Leo Shelton wanted to do was patch things up with his boyfriend Caleb Hart. When an accident threatens to take it all away the two realize just how much they need one another.

Loggerhead – Soon after they fall in love, Jake makes Eric a promise inspired by an old track uniform. But demanding work schedules at Jake’s four-star restaurant and Eric’s newspaper keep them from following through. Six years later, they take the honeymoon they never had, heading to the Florida coast in search of sea turtles—and rekindling their passion for each other in the process.

The Night Shift – Jonas Kelshiker works the night shift in the Evidence Room at the police depot, where the crimes have become monotonous and the policemen unremarkable – until the night Dan Harris shows up at his window.

Roadside Assistance – When Robert sees flashing lights in his rear view mirror, he doesn’t know just how wild a turn his night is going to take. With the threat of his first speeding ticket imminent, he tries to use his clever mouth to get him out of trouble. But this cop won’t let him get off that easy.

A taste of “The Encounter” by Angora Shade:

“I like this hallway,” he says, turning back to me and placing two hands directly upon me. His fingers flex over my pecs and the tips of his short nails dig playfully into my shirt. He pushes his body square against me, the movements of his breathing mimicking my own surprised and excited rhythm. Bringing his face closer to my ear, he speaks in a teasing whisper. “I prefer my company in the dark.”

I’m a little shocked at his bold and aggressive personality, but I like it. I hate how so many men I’ve been with have played the come-chase-me game, or the, I’m-only-going-to-pretend-I’m-into-you thing. This guy is different; clear intentions. No games. No jokes.

No problem.

I’m about to introduce myself when he pushes me backward against the wall. I hit the brick with a genuine oof of both astonishment and force, and find my hands have shot out around his hard waist. His muscular abs flex under my thumbs, and I feel drowned by his intense gaze.

His breath falls warm against my face. “I think you want what I want.”

What I want… I want this man. Every inch of my body is ready to fly at him, twitching and pushing for release like the stiff nudge of my dick against my government issue boxer briefs. Screw Jay. He’s late and I’m feeling attention starved. I’m single and I don’t want to be.

He looks me up and down, licking his lips. “God, I love a man in uniform.”

Wow! This one sounds SO yummy!

Interested? You can find LOVE IN UNIFORM on Goodreads, Torquere Books, Amazon, AllRomance, B&N, Google Play.


Click on the Rafflecopter link for your chance to win an e-copy of LOVE IN UNIFORM.
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Good luck and keep reading my friends!

Meet the authors:
Angora Shade: Angora Shade is an American author living in what she lovingly refers to as “Sheep Shit Nowhere” Europe. In an attempt to add some spice to her small town life, Ms. Shade began writing explicit erotica as a form of self-entertainment. Exploring the boundaries of acceptable sexual literature, she often seeks to create stories that not only entertain others, but also expose and push against the negative stigma surrounding sex in modern day society. She believes that sex in literature, art, personal thought, and physical nature, should be celebrated and expressed openly and as easily as any God-given freedom. Her favorite themes in writing include revenge, self-discovery, alternative materials for love play/BDSM, as well as anything that produces a good tingle, sizzle, or laugh. When not writing, Ms. Shade enjoys red wine, travel, dancing, classic cartoons, baking, and creating fine art. Catch up with Angora on her blog, Facebook and twitter.

Kay C. Sulli: Kay C. Sulli is a queer asexual writer often found scribbling in the wilderness. She writes from the heart with a passion for history, nature, and the American West. You can find her online on her blog, Goodreads and twitter.

DC Juris: Romance author, sci-fi fan club Captain, cosplayer, reigning Queen of Monkeyland, and random menace. Yep, we’re talking about DC Juris. She’s a cupcake making, football watching, rubber duck collecting, drag show loving, full of fabulous with a Capital F kinda gal. She’s also an Ordained Minister and an amateur photographer. She lives in Upstate NY with her husband, three dogs, and two cats. When she’s not writing, you can find her in her favorite chair watching “Star Trek” and “Supernatural” repeats on Netflix, or surfing the web for porn. Er…research. Surfing the web for research. She may speak softly but she lives and loves loudly. Just ask the neighbors. Catch DC online on her blog, Facebook and twitter.

Jean Wolfe: Jean Wolfe would really rather go hide under a rock somewhere than have to fill out author bios. Find Jean on Facebook.

Dale Cameron Lowry: Dale Cameron Lowry is a writer and editor living in the Midwest with a partner and three irritable cats. This is Dale’s second story for Torquere Press. Check out Dale’s website, Facebook, twitter, tumblr and Goodreads for more info.

Shannen Malone: Shannen Malone is an Irish student studying English, in the second year of her degree. When not scaling the monolith of her required reading list, Shannen can be found in her blanket nest, writing all things queer.

Kassandra Lea: Kassandra Lea has been writing for far longer than she cares to admit. She lies in southern Wisconsin with her mother, a gang of furry little monsters, and a ghost lovingly dubbed Bob. Find Kassandra on her website and Facebook.

Louise Blaydon: Louise is an academic, editor and writer. She primarily writes m/m and f/f fiction, and has published a number of novels and novellas and many short stories. She lives in England and has too many cats. Find Louise on her website and twitter.

Aiden McKenna: Aiden McKenna is a writer and editor living in the dirty south. When not bent over the writing desk, she enjoys time spent with family on her farm and relaxing on the porch with a strong drink and a good novel. Catch up with Aiden on twitter and via email: aidenmckennawrites (at) gmail (dot) com.


Will & Patrick DO THE HOLIDAYS–Review and Giveaway

Will & Patrick Do the Holidays Banner
Hi there! You all know that I’ve been following the new WILL & PATRICK serial from Leta Blake and Alice Griffiths. I laughed a bit reading WAKE UP MARRIED, but MEET THE FAMILY wasn’t a hit for me. In fact, I was losing hope that they’d ever get their hearts together…
Well, they did! (Sorta…) DO THE HOLIDAYS is the third installment of this contemporary M/M romance series and it has made me a believer again.

Check out my review and be sure to enter the giveaway for some free copies!

Will & Patrick Do the Holidays (Wake Up Married, #3)About the book:
A couple’s first holiday season is always a special time. Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Eve are magical when you’re in love. Too bad Will and Patrick’s marriage is a sham and they’re only faking their affection for each other. Or are they?

Sparks fly in this episode of the Wake Up Married serial. Will the sexual tension between Will and Patrick finally explode in a needy night of passion? Or will they continue to deny their feelings?

How about a taste?

“Ah, the acrid smell of insulin in the morning.” Patrick’s voice is still gravelly from sleep as he turns on the shower and pulls down his black boxer-briefs revealing his tight ass.

Will looks quickly away and back to the syringe he’s filling by the bathroom sink. “I can never get the last dose to eject from the insulin pens. I always have to pull it out with a needle.”

“After living with you, I have an entire list of ways they can improve insulin pen injectors.”

“I should have my lawyer queue up an appointment for you with the pharmaceutical company.”

“You do that, puddin’-pop, and I’ll be there with a PowerPoint presentation. It’ll consist of four words over and over. ‘Do your damn job.’ If pushed, I might throw in a ‘Don’t make me do it for you’ as a closing argument.”

Will pinches a bit of fat from his abdomen and sticks himself quickly. He’s done this for years, but he never stops hating it. Especially syringes. They’re somehow worse than the insulin pens. “I’ll ask Owen to make that happen.”

Patrick snorts from behind the curtain. Will glances over and heat floods his gut as he notices the shadow outline of Patrick’s morning wood. “Oh, um, let me just—” He hustles to deal with the used needle and ends up dropping the syringe in the sink. The scent of insulin grows stronger. “Why does it smell like Band-Aids?” Will muses as he finally gets rid of the used needle and cleans up the syringe, tossing the now-empty insulin pen.

“It’s the preservative. Meta-cresol,” Patrick says. “Mmm, so clinical. So sexy.”

“And you’re so weird.”

“Nothing like the smell of a hospital to get my motor running.”

Will glances back at Patrick’s shadow behind the shower curtain. He’s still got a half chub flopping around as he washes his hair. Will clears his throat.

“Have you considered an insulin pump?” Patrick asks.

Will tries to drag his mind from Patrick’s erection. “I don’t want one.”


“I don’t like the idea of having something attached to me. All the time. Something I have to rely on to do its job.”

“You trust insulin pens have the right dosage, that the dial works, that they’re—“

“I know, Patrick. But I have the right to my own preferences when it comes to my medical treatment.”

“Fair enough. So what’s the deal with your daddy?” Patrick asks sans segue.

“What are you talking about?” Will packs up his testing kit and uses a black marker he keeps in his murse to make a dot on the back of his left hand. He can’t forget to drop by the pharmacy and pick up his replacement insulin pens.

“Papa Molinaro. What’s the deal with him and the holidays? He wasn’t around for Thanksgiving. Will he be dropping down the chimney on Christmas Eve with a bag full of presents for you and a nice hard dick for your mommy? Or what?”

Will rolls his eyes. “Thanks for that image.”

“You’re welcome.”

“He spends Christmas with his daughters. Or at least he used to. I don’t keep in touch with him.”

“Ah, the half siblings you’ve never met. So, no Christmas phone call from Papa?”

“No.” Will feels the familiar hot, impatient squirm of nastiness in his gut. Conversations about his father usually bring it on.

“No Christmas card stuffed with cash?”

“No card, no text, no Skype, no email.”



“He’s obsessed enough with you to have you followed by mobster spies but he can’t pick up a phone. At best, that’s inefficient.”

“At worst?”

“At worst, Starshine, you have a deeply dysfunctional father/son relationship.”

“Wow. You really are a genius.”

Patrick barks a laugh and then begins to hum the new Madonna song he’s been singing off and on for the last two days.

“That’s still stuck in your head, huh?”


“Better than ‘We Three Kings’ mixed with ‘Scarborough Fair,’” Will mutters. Finished with his morning insulin rituals, he starts the water in the sink to begin his shaving routine. “Tony doesn’t do anything he doesn’t want to do, and being a reliable member of our family was never something he was good at.”

“When did you last see him?”

“It’s been three years. It can be ten more for all I care.” Will pumps shaving cream into his hand and smears it on his face. “He sweeps in on a whim, wreaks havoc on our lives, and sweeps out again.”

Patrick is quiet behind the curtain and Will glances over to see that he’s rinsing out his hair.

“There’s no pattern, unless you count my mom getting serious with anyone. As soon as my dad gets wind of her being happy with someone else, he has to come to town and wreck it.”

“With his dick.”

Will sighs. “Everything’s about sex for you, isn’t it?”

“Nope. A lot of things. But not everything.” He turns off the water and throws back the curtain. Will averts his eyes quickly, but his hands are already shaking enough that he’s not sure he should be trusted to shave himself. Patrick goes on. “But it’s all about sex between your parents. The Hurting Times churns with scintillating tales of your mom inappropriately hopping on your dad’s pole.”

“Like you know anything about ‘inappropriate’.”

Patrick laughs. “Like I know about that time they banged in the bathroom at some old lady’s funeral. The Hurting Times forum had pages dedicated to that one.”

Will’s ears grow hot.

“And, hey, for the record, even I know a funeral home toilet is a bad place for sex. Public bathrooms are tourist destinations for germs.” He shudders and slings a towel around his hips, thankfully covering his dangling dick. “It’s not sanitary.”

“You are such a jerk.”

“So you tell me.” Patrick grabs a hairbrush and runs it through his wet hair. The dark auburn looks almost brown and glistens brightly in the overhead bathroom lights. “There’s evidence of a genetic component to addiction.” Patrick’s eyes go foggy as he muses, “But is it addiction or abuse? Both probably.”

“What are you talking about?”

“You, mainly. But I’m also talking about them. If The Hurting Times gossip about the two of them is even half true, they are their own kind of addicts. Addicted to each other. Addicted to sex. Addicted to falling in love. Especially your mother. But it’s possible your father uses the intense sexual connection between them as abuse.”

“I…” Will’s fingers clutch at the razor and he drags it against his skin carefully. “I didn’t think you believed in psychology mumbo-jumbo.”

“I don’t believe in spiritual mumbo-jumbo. And, yes, psychology is a lot of bull-honky, but as a neurologist, I can’t deny that thoughts and experiences have physical effects on brain tissue. Dubious and whoo-hoo as most psychological theories seem compared with hard science. What’s your dad’s sign?”


Patrick shrugs and sidles up next to Will at the sink, examining his own face in the mirror.

Will sighs. “Early November. So, what’s that? Scorpio?”

“Ah. And your mother’s a Scorpio too.”

“How do you know? The Hurting Times again?”

“I know because I’ve met her.”

Patrick’s arm slides against his as he reaches for the can of shaving cream. Will moves slightly to the side but Patrick just scoots closer. Will can smell soap on his skin and shampoo in his hair. He wonders what those curls would feel like slick and wet under his fingers.

Patrick rubs on shaving cream and reaches for his razor. His naked chest slides against Will’s bicep.

Will tries to concentrate on shaving, but Patrick’s reflection in the mirror is distracting. His normally pale skin is flushed from the shower and his nipples are pink and peaked. Will clears his throat and scrapes his razor over his face again.

“Addiction,” Patrick muses on. “You didn’t stumble into that on your own. You drink…and your parents screw. That’s how these genes play out. And with both of them being Scorpios…”

Patrick’s arm rubs against him, and Will clicks his tongue against his teeth. Between this touching and Patrick’s speculation about his parents’ sex life, Will can’t tell if he’s going to pop an inconvenient boner or if his balls are going to shrivel up into his body.

“Two Scorpios can burn down a barn from the heat of their mutual orgasms.”

Ball-shriveling wins out. “Okay, well, this conversation has covered everything I never wanted to think about. I’m going to be late to work.”

Patrick studies Will in the mirror.

Will wipes his face clean of cream, decides not to care that he’s got one stripe of shiny skin on an otherwise stubbly face, and, grabbing his murse, leaves the sink to Patrick.

He dresses quickly. He really is going to be late. Not that anyone at Good Works would say anything to him.

“Do you have surgery scheduled?” Will calls out as he slides his wallet into his back pocket and hitches his bag on his shoulder.


“Meet you here tonight?”

“Will there be more Capheus?”

“Yes. And more Lito.”

“It’s a TV date with the hubby, then,” Patrick says, stepping out into the room with his sharp grin in place.

The hubby.

“First person home calls room service,” Patrick adds. “Order stuff we both like. We can share.”


“Oh, and Will? For the record, you’d still be hot even if you wore an insulin pump.”

“Thanks. But I’ll stick with the pens.”

Walking out of the pharmacy twenty minutes later with his new insulin pens, Will wonders what kind of sex Libras and Aries are supposed to have. You already know the answer to that. Hot enough to burn down a barn.

“God, just stop.”

He rubs a hand over his hair and decides to focus on the day ahead. He’ll take it one step at a time. Just like AA has taught him.

My Review:
This is the third episode in a serial and should be read in order.

Will and Patrick are still masquerading as a loving, happily married couple in Healing, South Dakota. They met in Vegas just prior to Thanksgiving, and got drunk and married in that order. Because Will’s inheritance, the Molinari Trust, is mafia money that will be forfeit if he and Patrick are divorced, they are making a go of it until they can figure a way out. They cohabitate the honeymoon suite in the Tallgrass Hotel, and things are awkward. The room only has a king sized bed, and Will insists on sleeping on the sofa, because he’s still in love with his ex, an emotionally abusive SOB named Ryan. Also, Will doesn’t want to just have sex with Patrick, his husband, he wants it to mean something. Patrick is a socially awkward, self-important neurosurgeon who is a survivor of child abuse. He’s a prickly one, to be sure.

This book, DO THE HOLIDAYS, spans the time between Thanksgiving and New Years. Patrick meets Will’s younger step-siblings who are all pleasant and he develops a rapport with them over Legos and deep conversations. He is still shunned/baited by Will’s mother who thinks Will should get back together with Ryan (which clearly demonstrates what a poor parent she is). Patrick puts up with it, barely.

In the previous episode Patrick began to observe his feelings for Will change from lust into deep appreciation (and lust!) and that change has progressed into affection. It’s a unique feeling for him, and he’s still not willing to share it verbally. He is the rock that Will needs, however, especially when Ryan stomps all over Will for the millionth time. Also, he’s definitely down for some Will-lovin’ and has an increasingly hard time being near Will without expressing himself physically. The sexual tension is high!

Will doesn’t want to want Patrick, but he’s not immune to the hints of affection he senses from his unwilling husband. Through is conversations with Patrick, and others, he’s seeing Ryan in a whole new, and unflattering, light. We get the first hint of this on Christmas, and it’s only stronger on New Years. I loved how Will and Patrick develop their relationship in this episode. They are nervous and scared, but clearly attracted and also becoming quite close. Patrick jokes that Will is his best friend, but it’s not really a joke after all. They have quiet moments of intense bonding, and finally consummate their relationship when they are both sober enough to enjoy–and remember!–it.

So, YAY for sexytimes happening on the page! I’m so happy these guys are getting closer and building a life together. I was getting nervous that I wasn’t going to like this serial, but I’m grooving with it now and can’t wait for the next episode.

Interested? You can find DO THE HOLIDAYS on Goodreads, Amazon, and Amazon UK


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About the Authors:
Leta Blake
Author of the bestselling book Smoky Mountain Dreams and the fan favorite Training Season, Leta Blake’s educational and professional background is in psychology and finance, respectively. However, her passion has always been for writing. She enjoys crafting romance stories and exploring the psyches of made up people. At home in the Southern U.S., Leta works hard at achieving balance between her day job, her writing, and her family.

You can find out more on her website, Facebook and twitter.

Alice Griffiths
A long-time reader of romance novels, Alice Griffiths finally took the plunge into writing, teaming up with best-selling author Leta Blake for the ‘Woke up Married’ serialized comedy. A lover of tropes, Alice enjoys mining old ideas and putting a fresh, funny spin on them. Formerly working in the newspaper industry, Alice is now an art curator. She lives in Sydney, Australia.

You can find out more about her by following her on Twitter and Facebook.

Adult Life is NOT THAT EASY–A Review

Hi there! Today I’m sharing my review for a contemporary New Adult novel NOT THAT EASY, by Radhika Sanghani. This is the sequel to VIRGIN and there are a lot of references to what happened in the previous book…so I’d recommend reading them in sequence. Besides, VIRGIN made me laugh out loud, in that “Thank Good it’s YOU and not ME!” way. Poor Ellie!

Well, she’s back and determined to live life on her own terms—which gets her into some strange and wild problems.

Not That Easy (Virgin, #2)About the book:
Ellie used to be a virgin, but now she’s a woman with sexual experience. Well, some sexual experience. She also has debt, an unpaid magazine internship, and three flatmates who left her with the single room to match her single status.

That’s okay. She doesn’t want a boyfriend anyway—she wants several. And if the sex is exciting enough, her ruthless magazine editor boss can exploit her dating life for a column.

After countless hook-ups, a disastrously fiery encounter with some heat lube, and one orgasm class, Ellie is faced with the sad reality of her sexual ineptitude. But when she starts to witness the emotional wreckage she’s leaving in her wake, Ellie realizes that sex can be hard, and there’s a down side to giving it up too easy.

My Review:
This book is a sequel to VIRGIN, and is best enjoyed if read in sequence, though it CAN be read as a standalone.

Ellie is a 22 y/o new uni grad living in a flatshare with her good friend Emma, and two men, Ollie (on whom Ellie has a total crush) and Will. The thing is Ellie’s the only single one, and she’s not happy to be stuck in the only single room of the flat.

She wants to find men to have sex with, many men, preferably. She recently lost her virginity to a douche, and she is dying to get more experience. She feels as if she’s crap at sex, and doesn’t get that everyone is, at first. As she’s hardly had a chance to experiment, Ellie agrees to sign up for online dating. This is intriguing and disastrous.

Her first date is a bit of a train wreck, with Ellie bolting via a fire escape just to get away from this guy. The second guy was really a good guy, I thought, but Ellie has weird idiosyncrasies that drive her to push him away. Their sex scene did give me a laughter cramp. Ye gads, Ellie’s so very uptight.

This is a problem every time she meets a man, actually. She desperately wants to have an orgasm with a guy, yet when she’s in the act she’s so trapped in her head that she can’t enjoy the experience at all. It was honestly painful being in her brain–and the lack of arousal she experiences *almost* put me off sex for more than 24 hours… (It was a near thing!)

She does meet a great guy, Nick, who’s been quite hung up on his ex for too long. Ellie sees the opportunity to get her first One Night Stand out of the way, and does so–only to be stymied the following morning when he wants her number. And further confused when he calls her! And takes her on nice dates! Ellie is really a neurotic mess. She has roughly 3 ounces of self-esteem and cannot fathom how to behave as Nick’s “rebound” girl–but her boss sees Ellie’s dating nightmares to be fodder for a tell-all column in the online mag that she interns for–on an unpaid basis. The horrors that are Ellie’s bad dates and bad pubic hair and further are now out on the ‘net for all to read. It’s mortifying, and she isn’t even getting paid!

While Ellie is a mess, she does get things together by the end. She makes bad, bad, bad decisions that upset her friends, family and flatmates, but she perseveres. She atones the best she can, and she takes control of her future in a way she had not considered before. Some of this is funny–uproariously so–but other points are raw. Ellie doesn’t feel good about herself and this makes it easy for people to take advantage of her. She’s trying to claim her life, but she really has no sense of being an adult, only a few vague ideas which make her feeble attempts at “adulting” poor. Her naivete is simultaneously humorous and sad, because it continually leads Ellie into poor choices.

I liked how she worked through her issues in the end, becoming a far stronger character. I liked how she asserted her sexual independence throughout the book. She and her feminist friends attempt to redefine “slut” into a positive term, which was an interesting concept, even if it didn’t quite turn out.

Interested? You can find NOT THAT EASY on Goodreads, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble.

Radhika SanghaniAbout the author:
Radhika Sanghani is an award-winning journalist for the Daily Telegraph, where she reports on women’s issues and has a regular column on everything from feminism to sexist air conditioning.

She spends unhealthy amounts of time thinking about gender equality, or the lack thereof, and has written two novels based around exactly that.

Her debut millennial comedy Virgin came out in 2014 (Joan Rivers said it was the funniest debut she’d ever read) and the much-awaited sequel Not That Easy just came out in October 2015.

You can connect with Radhika on her website, Goodreads, and twitter.

Thanks for popping in, and keep reading my friends!