Happy Book Birthday to PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT!

Hi there! I’m so excited to get the word out on a new contemporary M/M New Adult romance from Jay Northcote. PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT is the third book in her Housemates series, and can be enjoyed as a standalone. Though, to be honest, I’m sure you’ll enjoy HELPING HAND and LIKE A LOVER, too.

HousematesI’ll be sharing a review for this one in a couple weeks, but you can check out the tasty tidbit, and get in on the giveaway, below.

Practice Makes Perfect (Housemates, #3)About the book:
Getting experience with the guy next door seems like a great idea—until the lines blur.
Dev, a geeky first year physics student, has zero sexual experience and he’s determined to change that ASAP. After a bad time in halls of residence, he’s starting the summer term with different housemates and a new plan of action.

Ewan lives in the house next door to Dev. He’s young, free and single, and isn’t looking to change that anytime soon. When awkward circumstances throw them together, Ewan offers to help Dev out in the bedroom in return for maths tutoring, and Dev jumps at the chance.

They work their way through Dev’s sex-to-do list, but what starts as a perfect no-strings arrangement gets more complicated as their feelings for each other begin to grow. If they’re going to turn their lessons in lovemaking into something more permanent, they need to work out how they feel about each other—before they get to the end of Dev’s list.

How about a little taste?

Sitting on his bed, Dev yawned, his full stomach making him sleepy. He stared at his phone as he contemplated calling home but decided he couldn’t face it tonight. He loved his mum, but she did tend to bang on. Once she got him on the line, she’d end up talking for ages and asking him a million questions he was too tired to answer. Instead, he sent his mum a quick text.
All moved in, everything’s good. I’m shattered now so I’m going to have an early night. I’ll call you tomorrow.
She replied within seconds as though she’d been waiting for him to call.
Okay sweetie, glad you’re settled. Sleep well xxx
He picked up his notepad and crossed off phone home. Texting counted. He also crossed off everything else on his list for today.
That was Saturday done. Dev set his notepad aside, opened his laptop, and pulled up his lists app. He liked his notepad for day-to- day organisation; it gave him a certain satisfaction to cross out the things he’d done and to get to the end of the day with all the tasks completed. But for longer-term planning, he kept his lists on his Mac, synced to his phone.

For the first time in six months, Dev could breathe again. Finally he had a safe place where he could get back on track and look to the future. He began to type.
Things To Do This Term
Make some friends
Learn to cook
Research sex stuff
Join Grindr
Get some experience
Find a boyfriend

He stared at the words on the screen and sighed. That seemed like a lot of things to aim for. But it was good to have goals, right? Jez and Mac seemed really nice, so hopefully Dev was already on his way to achieving the first objective. And that bloke Ewan… Dev’s mind conjured up the image of the flame-haired hunk who lived next door. Ewan had been friendly.
Maybe there was potential there too.

I can tell you this is a sweet and sexy read! I devoured it…and look forward to sharing my review soon.

Interested? You can find PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT on Goodreads, and Amazon.

****GIVEAWAY****
Click on this Rafflecopter giveaway link for your chance to win a $10 gift card.
Good luck and keep reading my friends!

About the Author:
Jay lives just outside Bristol in the West of England, with her husband, two children, and two cats. She comes from a family of writers, but she always used to believe that the gene for fiction writing had passed her by. She spent years only ever writing emails, articles, or website content. One day, she decided to try and write a short story–just to see if she could–and found it rather addictive. She hasn’t stopped writing since.

You can find Jay on her website, Twitter, Facebook Author Page, and Amazon.

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Making It Work–ROCKIN’ IT FOREVER–Review and Giveaway!

tour-banner-e1466348530531Hi there! I’m so excited to share a review and giveaway for an new contemporary M/M rock romance from Morticia Knight. You know how I loved ROCKIN’ THE ALTERNATIVE, and ROCKIN’ IT FOREVER is the full-frontal sequel, sharing Bryan and Aubrey’s love with each other and the world.

Catch an excerpt, my review and enter to win one of three stunning prize packs below!

Rockin’ it ForeverAbout the book:
Music journalist Bryan Gallagher’s life has completely changed in an unexpected way. Not only has he snagged a dream assignment as the memoirist to alternative music’s rock superstar Aubrey King, but he’s also promised to give the beautiful and enigmatic musician a chance for them to forge a relationship. It’s all very overwhelming for Bryan since, up until he spent a sexually charged day and night with Aubrey, Bryan has never even dreamed of being with a man.

Aubrey is completely smitten with the boyishly handsome, young rock writer, Bryan. After their instant spark grows into something more, Aubrey is desperate to keep Bryan by his side for always. He’s promised Bryan that their love is for real, that Bryan isn’t simply one of his rock star conquests.

Their road isn’t an easy one, though. Despite their deepening bond and growing need for each other, other factors intrude. Neither Aubrey nor Bryan is ready to come out, and their relationship needs to remain a carefully guarded secret. In addition, Aubrey has to answer to the demands of his profession and Bryan has to traverse the shifting waters between his personal and business relationship with his famous lover.

Then a secret is revealed and everything in their joint world implodes. When a love is so strong that two men can barely take a breath without thinking of the other, will that be enough to bridge the loss of trust? The only way they can rock their love forever is if Aubrey can reach Bryan before it’s too late.

How about a little taste?

Aubrey barked out an easy laugh and Bryan joined in. Once they’d gotten a hold of themselves, Bryan spoke up again.

“This is probably going to sound really stupid, but I have to ask.”

“Ask me whatever you want, Bry. I don’t want you to think I’ll mock you in any way. I get it, man. This is all new. Unexpected. You didn’t sign up for it and I guess…”

Bryan waited, but it seemed as if Aubrey might not continue. “You guess?”

“Aw, man. I suppose if I want you to feel free to say anything, I should give you the same respect. Like we said before—no games, no bullshit. Right?”

“Absolutely.”

“Well, I’m worried I pushed you too fast. I’m not gonna lie. I wanted you before I met you, I… Shit.” Aubrey mumbled something unintelligible. “Fuck. We should wait to have this conversation in person.”

Bryan swallowed down the fear of what Aubrey might be about to reveal. “Come on, Aubrey. You’ve already brought it up and it’ll be at least a couple days before we can talk face to face.”

“Oh hey, that’s right. When are you—?”

“Aubrey. What conversation?”

Aubrey let out a slight groan on the other end. It didn’t sound happy. “Please, Bry. Please don’t be angry. I care about you. I believe in you as a writer. I wouldn’t want anyone else to do my memoir—I’d rather not do it at all if that were the case. This isn’t just about sex. For real, no games.”

“That’s… That’s all wonderful. But I don’t see how that would make me angry.”

What amounted to a small, strangled noise could be heard from Aubrey. “I only decided to do the memoir so I could have the chance to meet you.”

Aubrey’s confession was like a rock that had landed in the pit of Bryan’s stomach. “You… You what?” He breathed in through his nose a few times, his heart pounding at the thought he’d been played by the master player.

“Bry, baby, please listen. Think about it. I couldn’t very well call you up and ask you out on a date. I had no idea if you were gay or straight, or open to the possibility of exploring or if we’d click… Anyway, I wasn’t about to send you an email inquiring if you’d ever considered whether your sexual options should include cock.” Aubrey mumbled a ‘fuck’ under his breath. “Do you know how difficult it is to meet a decent guy in my position? Someone who I might actually have a real connection with, who might ‘get’ me?” Aubrey’s voice had risen in pitch. He paused, then sighed before speaking again. “I’m a public figure. I’m in the closet. The men I meet only want to put their dick into a celebrity or they want an out and proud partner. The few others who might be prospects are usually a part of the circle I’ve always traveled in—sanctioned members of the wretched institution we call the music business.

“I don’t like the industry. I hate the corporate machine. Does that mean I’m biting the hand that feeds me? Probably. But I can’t help it. I came back to the music biz because I decided I had more I wanted to say. I don’t need the cash. The adoration is great, as long as it’s from a place of sincerity, from a love of the tunes. But I don’t need that mindless hero worship I once had.”

Aubrey lowered his voice, spoke with a pleading tone that gripped Bryan’s heart. “I need real. A genuine bond. A future with the possibility of love. Everything I said to you before was the absolute fucking truth, Bry. I’ve been looking for someone who speaks the only language I understand, the language of music. When I asked you if you might be that someone, I said it from my heart. Yeah. I orchestrated our meeting and I’m damn glad I did. Because you’re the best person I’ve come across since I can remember and I’ll do anything to be worthy of you.”

My Review:

Bryan Gallagher is a rock writer who has signed on to write the memoir of his rock idol, Aubrey King. In their first meeting Aubrey made it clear that he’s gay, closeted, and totally attracted to Bryan. They shared a weekend of sexual exploration together, and separated with the promise to reunite in a week–after Bryan settled his affairs (temporarily) in New York and Aubrey appeared at a concert in Italy.

Time and distance certainly makes these hearts grow fonder, and they become bold when they meet again. Bryan’s supposed to stay at an apartment in LA, but Aubrey convinces him to stay in his home. There, Bryan and Aubrey explore each other, in depth. The bond between them is strong, and growing, but neither man is ready to come out. Bryan’s never been with a man, and Aubrey has had horrible problems with homophobic band mates in the past. He can’t bear to suffer that emotional abuse again.

Still, Aubrey’s inner circle recognize the relationship for what it is, and one of Aubrey’s ghosts decides the time is ripe for another shake-down. In the middle of everything, keeping their growing love a secret proves to be difficult, and pointless.

The pace of the book is good, with the span of time roughly several months. There are moments of intense heat, and sweet longing, and dismay for separations. Aubrey’s both smitten and stubborn. He wants Bryan all the time, and struggles with how to accomplish a lasting relationship under cover of the memoir. He’s sure that at some point Bryan will tire of him, or finish the book. Then what? Bryan is conflicted. His friends all assume Aubrey’s gay, and he’s hard pressed to keep denying his own changes. That said, Aubrey’s the one person he’s connected with at so many important levels. Could he come out? Would Aubrey and he make it in the long run, if he did?

I liked how compassionate these guys are, and how they took care of one another, but I was frustrated with how quickly Bryan was able to walk away when faced with a problem. That said, we didn’t spend a ton of page time in angst about loss. Just the pertinent scenes, which were heartbreaking. The reunion at the end was pretty much epic and I think readers will really enjoy how it all worked out.

Interested? You can find ROCKIN’ IT FOREVER on Goodreads, Pride Publishing, Amazon, Barnes & Noble and AllRomance.

****GIVEAWAY****

Rockin’ it Forever Grand Prize giveaway:

Grand Prize – Rockin’ it Gift Basket including: 

Signed paperback copy of Rockin’ it Forever, Skull Candy ear buds, a $30 Spotify gift card, a Falling in Stereo Concert T-shirt (made to order for your size), a music speaks necklace, Mosh Potatoes – a rock ‘n’ roll cookbook and a Rockin’ it Forever canvas messenger bag.
 
2nd prize: Signed paperback of Rockin’ it Forever, $10 iTunes gift card and Falling in Stereo concert T-shirt.
 
3rd prize: Signed rack card, Morticia Knight pen, 2017 calendar magnet.

Click here to enter!!

Good luck and keep reading my friends!

About the Author:
M/M Erotic Romance author Morticia Knight enjoys hot stories of men loving men forever after. They can be men in uniform, Doms and subs, rock stars or bikers – but they’re all searching for the one (or two!) who was meant only for them.

When not indulging in her passion for books, she loves the outdoors, film and music. Once upon a time she was the singer in an indie rock band that toured the West Coast and charted on U.S. college radio. She is currently working on more installments of Sin City Uniforms and The Hampton Road Club, as well as the follow-up to Bryan and Aubrey’s story from Rockin’ the Alternative.

You can find Morticia online on her website, Goodreads, Totally Bound, Amazon, Twitter and Facebook.

Out today! EASY KISSES–Excerpt and Giveaway!

EK Teaser 10
Hi there! I’m getting the word out on a new contemporary romance from Kristen Proby. EASY KISSES is the fourth book in her Boudreaux series and sounds like a solid romance.

Catch the excerpt below and be sure to enter to win a pair of shoes from JustFab.com.

EK AmazonAbout the book:
The Boudreaux Series. Sexy. Intriguing. Easy.
Simon Danbury, an internationally sought after motivational speaker, helps women from all walks of life with love, self-esteem, dating and career building skills. Handsome, witty and wealthy, Simon seemingly has everything a man could want.

But appearances can be deceiving.

While Simon may have the answers for millions of women all over the world, when it comes to his own love life, he’s a giant, sexy mess. Divorced, and convinced that he’ll never love again, the very last thing he expects is one Charly Boudreaux.

Charly doesn’t want to be at this seminar in the middle of nowhere, but her sister made her go. She’s the one who has her life together. Great career, amazing family, nice home, and loyal friends. So what if she doesn’t have a man? She doesn’t need one. If she’s learned anything in her almost thirty years, it’s that men are more trouble than they’re worth.

And they have a nasty habit of breaking your heart into a million tiny pieces.

So she’ll sit through all of Simon’s touchy feely crap and go home and get on with her life. Except Simon isn’t really spouting crap, and when he smiles at her, the butterflies are ridiculous.

Never mixing business with pleasure, Simon finds Charly, a bright spot in a universe that’s been dark for too long. But will he be able to resist her?

And why would he want to?

How about a little taste?

“Hi there, handsome.”

“Well, hello, love.”

“You know,” I say as I lock the door behind him, then walk to my counter to close out the till and get ready to leave. “I’ve discovered that since you’ve been here, you’re very bad for my productivity.”

“How is that?” He leans on the counter and braces his chin on his fist, watching me.

“I’m closing the shop early, for one.”

“I do believe the sign in the window says you close at six.” He checks his watch. “And look at that, it’s six.”

“I haven’t actually closed at six since…well, I don’t remember. I usually chat with customers, redesign displays, shop for new stock. But most of that has been set aside because I seem to be spending most of my time with a certain sexy Brit. It’s a good thing you’re cute.”

He raises a brow and stands to full height, taking my breath away. His ink is on display again in a simple black T-shirt, stretched over wide, muscular shoulders.

Where did my knees go again?

“Cute, am I?”

His accent gets even thicker when he’s turned on, and it’s on full blast now.

“Adorable.”

He slowly circles around the counter and leans into me, pinning my hips against it. His lips are inches from mine.

“I don’t think a man is supposed to be cute.

“No?” Oh, God, I can’t breathe right when he’s this close to me. His hands are on my hips now, his fingers under the hem of my blouse, and then gliding up my skin and over my bra to cup my breasts.

“We shouldn’t do this here.” Is that my voice? I sound breathy and turned on, which is pretty accurate.

“No one is here,” he says and brushes feather-soft kisses over my cheek to my ear. My body is one giant shiver. Thank God for the giant display I built today that blocks us from outside traffic.

As if by their own volition, my hands make their way down the back of his jeans to cup his very fine ass just as he nips my neck, making me gasp.

“How cute am I now?” he whispers, never taking his lips from my skin.

“You’re just precious,” I reply, hearing my own accent thicken along with his cock pressed to my belly.

“You make me laugh,” he says, smiling against my neck. “You make me so hard it hurts. And I’m grateful that you’re wearing a skirt.”

“Why is that?”

He reaches down and balls the material in his fists, raising it above my waist.

“You’re not wearing panties,” he says with surprise, his blue eyes pinned to mine.

“Not today.”

 Whoa! This one sounds sexy with a capital S!

Interested? You can find EASY KISSES on Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, and Kobo.

13403232_782396971896450_2452518749080088839_oAnd don’t forget to grab the first three books in the Boudreaux Series on sale for a limited time only!
EASY LOVE, EASY CHARM, and EASY MELODY.

****GIVEAWAY****

Click on this Rafflecopter giveaway link for your chance to win a pair of shoes! The author will send one winner a pair of shoes from JustFab.com!
Good luck and keep reading my friends!

Author Pic_MontanaAbout the Author:

New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Kristen Proby is the author of the popular With Me in Seattle series. She has a passion for a good love story and strong characters who love humor and have a strong sense of loyalty and family. Her men are the alpha type—fiercely protective and a bit bossy—and her ladies are fun, strong, and not afraid to stand up for themselves. Kristen spends her days with her muse in the Pacific Northwest. She enjoys coffee, chocolate, and sunshine. And naps.

Visit Kristen online on her website, Facebook, twitter, Goodreads, or sign up for her newsletter.
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Coming Soon: HECTOR AND STEELE–Excerpt and Giveaway!

BannerTemplate(25)Hi there! Today I’m excited to share a new contemporary M/M police romance from AC Katt. HECTOR AND STEELE is the second book in the New Mexico series, but can be enjoyed on its own.It actually releases tomorrow, so feel free to preorder away!

Catch the excerpt and enter the giveaway below!

Hector and Steele-HighResAbout the book:
Growing up with drug-dealing, addict parents hasn’t been easy for Matteo and Felipe. When their father finds out Matteo is gay, he ejects him from the house and into the arms of county sheriff Hector Gomez, who decides to foster him.

Unfortunately, Matteo is forced to leave his younger brother to the not-so-tender mercies of their parents. But, during a DEA/FBI raid on their parents’ home, Felipe is turned over to the Children, Youth and Families Department, and Hector decides to foster Felipe, as well.

Fostering two boys is full of challenges. But, Hector and his roommate FBI agent Steele Adams, love them. And in the process, discover their love for one another. The new family is fine…until the parents get out on bail.

How about a little taste?

Hector Gomez answered what he thought to be a domestic violence call. The neighbor who called it in sounded hysterical. As the Sheriff of Sandoval County, he took too many calls for domestic abuse. They usually involved alcohol or drugs but something in his cop’s gut told him this was different. He pulled into the driveway, got out of his Explorer, and saw a wild, glassy-eyed man standing on the rock-strewn lawn, waving a gun, and beating a ten-year-old kid about his body. The man wasn’t drunk, he was high. He had the kid on the ground, kicking him in the ribs, groin, and legs with steel-toed boots. The gun waved threateningly in the child’s face, which the kid tried to protect with waif-thin arms.

The man and the youngster appeared to be of Hispanic origin. The boy had rolled up in a ball in the front of the house, clothed in nothing but holey blue jeans and a thin T-shirt. Although only mid-November, New Mexico was experiencing an early cold snap due to the enormous El Nino build-up in the Pacific. He jumped from his Explorer and quickly shouted at the man to step away.

“I’m going to kill you, you little faggot.” He pulled the trigger as the boy tried to roll away. He fired the gun a second time, barely missing the boy.

Gomez’s backup, Deputy Edwards, fired a warning shot. The man turned to Edwards and pointed the gun. Hector shot the weapon out of his hand. The man fell next to the boy and spit in the kid’s face. After Edwards helped him separate the man from the boy, Hector instructed him to call a bus and the Children, Youth, and Families Department

“Take him to UNM Sandoval. After the medics are through with him, book him and hold him for arraignment on attempted murder, child abuse, child endangerment, resisting arrest, and anything else you can think of to throw at him.”

While waiting for the second bus so the EMTs could take the kid to the hospital, he got a blanket from his trunk and draped it around the boy whose chest heaved with sobs.

“What’s your name, son?” Hector knelt and put his arm around the boy’s shoulders.

“Matteo. Matteo Pena.”

A woman at the storm door shouted obscenities in Spanish, prominently featuring the word maricón, a derogatory term for gay.

Suddenly, a small boy of about five came barreling out of the house and threw himself onto the older boy. “What did he do to you? Are you okay? You can’t leave. You can’t leave me alone with them.” He sobbed as he held on tight to his brother.

“I demand that you let me take my younger son back into the house. Felipe, come.” She grabbed the kicking and screaming child, gave him a casual slap, and dragged him back through the door.

“Matteo, Matteo, please. You can’t leave me here.”

The brother, clearly fearful and still sobbing, raised his face to Hector. “What do I do? She’ll take this out on Felipe, and he isn’t strong enough to handle her or him.”

Hector put his arm around the kid’s shoulder again. “Your father, such as he is, will be in the county lockup, at least for the night. We can figure things out in the morning. I won’t let him hurt your brother.”

“But she will. She isn’t as strong as him, but she’ll use the belt to hurt Felipe for coming out of the house.” The boy’s chest heaved as tears ran down his cheeks unchecked. “Why was I so stupid? Now Felipe is going to get punished, and it’s my fault. They weren’t supposed to be home.”

The kid turned his head toward the little boy still crying at the door. “Felipe, don’t get into trouble. I’ll come get you. I won’t leave you alone for long.”Hector Gomez answered what he thought to be a domestic violence call. The neighbor who called it in sounded hysterical. As the Sheriff of Sandoval County, he took too many calls for domestic abuse. They usually involved alcohol or drugs but something in his cop’s gut told him this was different. He pulled into the driveway, got out of his Explorer, and saw a wild, glassy-eyed man standing on the rock-strewn lawn, waving a gun, and beating a ten-year-old kid about his body. The man wasn’t drunk, he was high. He had the kid on the ground, kicking him in the ribs, groin, and legs with steel-toed boots. The gun waved threateningly in the child’s face, which the kid tried to protect with waif-thin arms.

The man and the youngster appeared to be of Hispanic origin. The boy had rolled up in a ball in the front of the house, clothed in nothing but holey blue jeans and a thin T-shirt. Although only mid-November, New Mexico was experiencing an early cold snap due to the enormous El Nino build-up in the Pacific. He jumped from his Explorer and quickly shouted at the man to step away.

“I’m going to kill you, you little faggot.” He pulled the trigger as the boy tried to roll away. He fired the gun a second time, barely missing the boy.

Gomez’s backup, Deputy Edwards, fired a warning shot. The man turned to Edwards and pointed the gun. Hector shot the weapon out of his hand. The man fell next to the boy and spit in the kid’s face. After Edwards helped him separate the man from the boy, Hector instructed him to call a bus and the Children, Youth, and Families Department

“Take him to UNM Sandoval. After the medics are through with him, book him and hold him for arraignment on attempted murder, child abuse, child endangerment, resisting arrest, and anything else you can think of to throw at him.”

While waiting for the second bus so the EMTs could take the kid to the hospital, he got a blanket from his trunk and draped it around the boy whose chest heaved with sobs.

“What’s your name, son?” Hector knelt and put his arm around the boy’s shoulders.

“Matteo. Matteo Pena.”

A woman at the storm door shouted obscenities in Spanish, prominently featuring the word maricón, a derogatory term for gay.

Suddenly, a small boy of about five came barreling out of the house and threw himself onto the older boy. “What did he do to you? Are you okay? You can’t leave. You can’t leave me alone with them.” He sobbed as he held on tight to his brother.

“I demand that you let me take my younger son back into the house. Felipe, come.” She grabbed the kicking and screaming child, gave him a casual slap, and dragged him back through the door.

“Matteo, Matteo, please. You can’t leave me here.”

The brother, clearly fearful and still sobbing, raised his face to Hector. “What do I do? She’ll take this out on Felipe, and he isn’t strong enough to handle her or him.”

Hector put his arm around the kid’s shoulder again. “Your father, such as he is, will be in the county lockup, at least for the night. We can figure things out in the morning. I won’t let him hurt your brother.”

“But she will. She isn’t as strong as him, but she’ll use the belt to hurt Felipe for coming out of the house.” The boy’s chest heaved as tears ran down his cheeks unchecked. “Why was I so stupid? Now Felipe is going to get punished, and it’s my fault. They weren’t supposed to be home.”

The kid turned his head toward the little boy still crying at the door. “Felipe, don’t get into trouble. I’ll come get you. I won’t leave you alone for long.”

Wow. This one sounds intense.

Interested? You can find HECTOR AND STEELE on Goodreads, Decadent Publishing, Amazon, AllRomance, and Smashwords.

****GIVEAWAY****

Click on this Rafflecopter giveaway link for your chance to win both books in the New Mexico series.

Good luck and keep reading my friends!

About the Author:
AC Katt was born in New York City’s Greenwich Village. She remembers sitting at the fountain in Washington Square Park listening to folk music while they passed the hat. At nine, her parents dragged her to New Jersey where she grew up, married and raised four children and became a voracious reader of romantic fiction. At one time she owned over two thousand novels, until she and her husband took themselves and the cat to New Mexico for their health and its great beauty.

Now, most of AC’s books are electronic (although she still keeps six bookcases of hardcovers), so she never has to give away another book. AC is a late bloomer, however, she claims to have found her niche writing LGBT romance.

She hangs out on line on her website, blog, Pinterest, Facebook and twitter. To get snippets of new releases and Works in Progress subscribe to AC Katt’s Kattery by sending an e-mail to mlhansel@gmail.com.

pride

Easier Done Than Said–CONVINCING THE SECRETARY-A Review

Hi there! Today I’m sharing a review for a recently published M/M historical romance from Ava March. I really enjoyed HIS CLIENT, HIS REQUEST and VISCOUNT’S WAGER, so I was eager to read CONVINCING THE SECRETARY.

Convincing the Secretary (London Legal, #3)About the book:
Business and pleasure is a mix no gentleman should consider.
Lord Grayson Holloway goes after what he wants—be it in the law office on his clients’ behalf or in the bedchamber. His new position as partner puts him closer to achieving his goal of becoming the most successful solicitor in London. There’s just one problem—his new secretary. Broad of shoulder yet mild of manner, Edward tempts Gray like no other. Yet the young man barely notices him.

Edward Fenton tries to be a good secretary, but being in Lord Grayson’s hard, commanding presence rouses Edward’s most forbidden desires. Wicked, naughty desires no gentleman should consider giving in to, let alone with his new employer.

Gray is more than willing to mix business with pleasure. But convincing Edward to take a chance on a future with him? That might be the most challenging case Gray has ever taken on.

Warning: Includes buttoned-up gentlemen who become undone, improper use of a desk, spankings, and a big bad lord who has a soft spot for his virgin secretary.

My Review:
This is the third book in a series and a fully enjoyable read on its own. It’s an historical M/M romance set in 1820s London.

Edward is a Cambridge grad, serving as a secretary for a law firm in accordance with his father’s wishes. Edward truly has no love for law, or becoming a solicitor. He follows his father’s dictates because he is a dutiful younger son in a large family he has no desire to embarrass. Still, Edward is a 22 y/o virgin, who desires men, art and punishment–perhaps in that order.

Lord Grayson is a hard-nosed solicitor, new to his firm. He’s unhappy that his attractive secretary, Edward, always seems to be eyeing his partner, Mr. Barrington. Why does the man not look upon Gary? Is it because he knows Gray’s family “secret” that he was claimed, but not sired, by his “father” the earl? It seems he does desire men…just not Gray. (Well, that’s what Gray thinks!)

Thing is, Edward is terrifyingly attracted to Gray, and afraid his interest would be rewarded by a visit to Newgate prison as a sodomite. He has NO experience in sexual matters, or emotional ones, it seems. When Gray determines that he turns Edward on, he proceeds to give Edward exactly what he requests: punishment. Oh, and a couple of dates, and some seriously hawt first time action.

There’s a kerfuffle, but it’s contained to jealousy, meanness, and rejection between these two and is quickly resolved by second hard thinks and first frank discussions. I loved how these guys patched up their differences and made the best kind of HEA that they could manage given the time period of the book. Edward took charge of his life for the first time ever, and Gray learned that his parentage was not a matter of concern for a man who honestly loved him.

Very sweet, steamy and satisfying in a short read.

Interested? You can find CONVINCING THE SECRETARY on Goodreads, Samhain Publishing, Amazon, Barnes & Noble and AllRomance. I received a review copy via NetGalley.

About the Author:
Ava March is a bestselling author of sexy, emotionally intense M/M historical erotic romances. She loves writing in the Regency time period, where proper decorum is of the utmost importance, but where anything can happen behind closed doors. With over fifteen works to her credit, her books have been finalists in the Rainbow Awards and More Than Magic contest, and deemed ‘must-haves’ for Historical M/M romance by RT Book Reviews readers.

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

Thanks for popping in and keep reading my friends!

Finding Love Could SET ME FREE–Excerpt and Giveaway!

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Hi there! Today I’m helping to spread the word on a new contemporary M/M romance from Kitty Stephens. SET ME FREE is a

Be sure to drop below and enter the giveaway for a $25 GC or one of FIVE ebooks of SET ME FREE.
Set Me Free 1600px FRONT (Smashwords, Amazon)
About the book:
When an affluent college-bound boy falls for a young artist, he must choose between the life that’s been mapped out for him and the chance at true love.

How about a little taste?

They found a secluded spot to sit off the main drag and scarfed down pieces of pizza and people-watched. Aaron had been full of nerves earlier, but Lucky put him at ease. He had that way about him.

“I’ve got a few minutes left,” Lucky said when they finished their food.

They got up, sipping at their drinks as they made their way through the crowd back toward Lucky’s booth. It was now or never. He had to ask, had to get the words out, or miss his shot.

“Can I ask you something?” Lucky spoke up before Aaron could. Maybe Lucky would… Aaron held his breath, nodding. “It might sound weird.”

“Sure,” Aaron replied, his heart beating a little faster. He had no idea what was coming now; what could Lucky possibly want from him? A kiss?

“Can you take your picture for me?”

Aaron blinked at him. Lucky tilted his head off to one side and Aaron turned his head the same direction. His gaze landed on a photo booth, realization sinking in. His mouth fell open, unsure what to say. It was a little weird because they barely knew each other, but also flattering.

“I’d really like to draw you again.” Lucky seemed slightly embarrassed. “I mean, I could take pictures on my phone if that’s better for you, but that seemed creepier somehow.”

Aaron couldn’t help the chuckle that escaped at Lucky’s words, even as the idea of Lucky drawing him again and again left him breathless. “Um,” he managed to get out, glancing around at the crowd. A familiar blonde head caught his eye and he nearly choked.

Was Lyn at the carnival? Wasn’t she supposed to be with their mothers?

Aaron pulled Lucky by the hand into the photo booth and slid the curtain shut.

Lucky slid money into the slot as they sat down. His breath caught as Lucky’s hands touched his face gently. “Like this,” Lucky whispered, turning his head to the side. The camera flashed. Lucky’s fingers turned his head to the front, pulling away just in time for the camera to go off again. Once again, Lucky’s fingers turned his head to the side, only now he was facing Lucky, staring deeply into his eyes.

Aaron tried not to hyperventilate as he held Lucky’s gaze. The camera flashed for the last time but neither of them moved.

“Go out with me?” Aaron suddenly blurted out. He had to do something or he might do something even more insane, like kiss Lucky. Aaron so wasn’t ready for that yet. Lucky’s eyes widened and he smiled.

“Sure,” Lucky drawled after a moment. “When?”

It sounds sooooo sweet! 😀

I have some great insights from Kitty, too…
My name Kitty Stephens. I currently reside in Ohio, with my husband, my son, and our three guinea pigs. I’ve been an avid reader since I was very young and started writing when I was around nine or ten. Once I had internet access, I became active in fan communities and started posting my work on various fan sites. Set Me Free is my first book.

What’s the easiest thing about writing?
Creating an outline/planning out the story. The planning stages are always the easiest.

Name one author (living or dead) you’d like to write with?
Wow, maybe Chris Colfer? He’s one of my favorite actors/authors and his books are great. I think we could write something amazing.

Tell us about your cover and how it came about.
The cover of Set Me Free is of Aaron and Lucky sitting on a bench on the beach, looking out on the carnival and the ocean. We knew when we talked about the cover we wanted to involve the carnival, since it’s at the forefront of the story. We also wanted to include the ocean and the bench from the pier. The back cover also includes some art supplies, a reference to Lucky’s artwork.

Is this book part of a series? Do you have ideas that could make it into a series? If it is a series, tell us a little about it.
It is not! I considered trying to develop it that way very early on in the writing process, but I passed that idea over almost immediately. This story works better as a standalone novel.

Interested? You can find SET ME FREE on Goodreads, Interlude Press, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, Smashwords, IndieBound, and AllRomance.

****GIVEAWAY****

Click on this Rafflecopter giveaway link for your chance to win a $25 Interlude Press Gift Card or one of FIVE E-copies of ‘Set Me Free’ by Kitty Stephens!
Good luck and keep reading my friends!

About the author:
Kitty Stephens’ writing aspirations date back to her childhood, when she and her brother would make up stories about characters in their favorite books. She eventually started writing stories in online fan communities, and majored in English at Ohio State University. She lives in Ohio with her husband and son. Set Me Free is her first novel.

You can catch up with Kitty on her Tumblr Facebook, and Twitter.

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Love’s Value: More Than RAG AND BONE–A Review

Hi there! Today I’m sharing a review for a new magical M/M romance from the historical Charm of Magpies world conjured by KJ Charles. RAG AND BONE marks the beginning of a new series and features an interracial couple who’ve got some true dilemmas. As you know I simply loved A GENTLEMAN’S POSITION, THINK OF ENGLAND, and THE SECRET CASEBOOK OF SIMON FEXIMAL, so I knew I’d love this historical, magical romance.

Rag and Bone (Rag and Bone, #1)About the book:
It’s amazing what people throw away…
Crispin Tredarloe never meant to become a warlock. Freed from his treacherous master, he’s learning how to use his magical powers the right way. But it’s brutally hard work. Not everyone believes he’s a reformed character, and the strain is putting unbearable pressure on his secret relationship with waste-man Ned Hall.

Ned’s sick of magic. Sick of the trouble it brings, sick of its dangerous grip on Crispin and the miserable look it puts in his eyes, and sick of being afraid that a gentleman magician won’t want a street paper-seller forever—or even for much longer.

But something is stirring among London’s forgotten discards. An ancient evil is waking up and seeking its freedom. And when wild magic hits the rag-and-bottle shop where Ned lives, a panicking Crispin falls back onto bad habits. The embattled lovers must find a way to work together—or London could go up in flames.

This story is set in the world of the Charm of Magpies series.

Warning: Contains a warlock who needs to go straight (but isn’t), a waste-man running out of patience, blood magic, bad-tempered justiciars, and a pen with a mind of its own.

My Review:
Crispin is a disgraced warlock attempting rehabilitation. He had no idea when he was recruited, as a child, by a blood magician that he was doing anything illegal. It was only when his mentor and caretaker was found guilty of murder that Crispin’s involvement became known. He’s been offered several mentors to re-train him in acceptable use of magic–and has failed all attempts, his magic–graphimancy–simply doesn’t work like other types. Using his forbidden bone pen (fashioned from one of his own finger bones!) Crispin can draw with his own blood and make magic happen. It’s a bit harrowing, and highly frowned upon.

Ned and Crispin met when Ned assisted in the capture of Crispin’s murderous mentor. They have maintained a clandestine love over the past several months, despite Ned’s aversion to magic. He is “flit” able to hear magic, and he also despises this ability. As Crispin takes on yet another mentor, Ned’s getting embroiled in a magical plot–jar sellers, like his neighbor, are being killed in extraordinary ways. Ned can hear the use of magic, and Crispin breaks his oath to save Ned and his rag shop for certain destruction. As the story unfolds Ned and Crispin learn that a great danger is being unleashed, and it’s up to them to save London…

It’s a fantastic mystery, and a sweet romance. This book is the first in a spin-off series from the Charm of Magpies, and fully enjoyable on its own–though I will admit to rushing back and buying up the Charm of Magpie books. I’ve not read a book by this author that I haven’t thoroughly enjoyed, so it’s not a big gamble.

Interested? You can find RAG AND BONE on Goodreads, Samhain Publishing, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and AllRomance.

About the Author:
KJ Charles is a writer and freelance editor. She lives in London with her husband, two kids, an out-of-control garden and an increasingly murderous cat.

KJ writes mostly romance, gay and straight, frequently historical, and usually with some fantasy or horror in there. She specialises in editing romance, especially historical and fantasy, and also edits children’s fiction.

Find her on twitter, Facebook, join her Facebook group, or contact her here. She is represented by Deidre Knight at The Knight Agency, and published by Samhain and Loveswept.

Thanks for popping in and keep reading my friends!

Hunting Love: BEAUTY INC–Review and Giveaway!

Beauty Inc Blog Tour Banner
Hi there! Today I’m sharing a review and giveaway for a new contemporary fairytale M/M romance from Tara Lain. You know I enjoyed SINDERS AND ASH and DRIVEN SNOW so I was eager to read BEAUTY INC, a retelling of Beauty and the Beast, with a gay twist! It’s a sweet romance with a compassionate “beast” who only wants the best for the people around him.

Catch the excerpt, my review, and enter to win a $20 GC below!

Beauty,Inc Book Cover
About the book:
Is beauty only skin deep?
Chemist Dr. Robert “Belle” Belleterre loves flowers, green trees, his best friend Judy, and “his baby”: the new face cream he developed to help put his father’s small cosmetics company on the map. Sadly he gets no help from his alcoholic, gambling-addicted father who loses Belle in a poker game to Magnus Strong, the CEO of Beauty, Inc. the largest American cosmetics company—a man infamous for his scarred ugliness.

Belle finds himself uprooted from his home, living in a wildly crazy apartment in New York owned by Mr. Pennymaker, and completely unprepared for his mad attraction to the charismatic Strong. Feeling like a traitor, Belle fights his passion only to see more and more of the goodness and humility hidden by Strong’s ugly face. But when Belle’s family starts manipulating his life again, the odds turn against happiness for beautiful Belle and his beloved beast.

How about a little taste?

“Looking for someone?”

“Yes. Judy. My friend. I thought she was coming here.”

“Oh yes. She has her apartment on the ground floor. Mr. Strong thought it would be best if she didn’t have to climb too many stairs while she’s being treated.”

Belle just stared. He felt the tears welling in his eyes but couldn’t stop them. Limb by limb, he collapsed to the floor like an old plastic bag. His own father hadn’t even paid attention, and Magnus Strong put Judy on the ground floor to keep her from having to climb stairs.

Mr. P closed the door and flopped down beside him. “So, my dear, what seems to be the trouble?”

Belle shook his head and snuffled.

“Try again.”

“I did a really bad thing.”

“What might that have been, my dear?”

He sniffed. “I humped my boss.”

“Hmm. Humped. I’m failing to get a mental image.”

Belle sighed. “It’s probably just as well. I got overzealous and threw myself on Magnus Strong. That might have been okay, but then I—” He dropped his face in his hand. “Oh God.”

“I’m starting to get an image. Continue.”

He popped his head up. “I kissed him, okay? And then, as if that wasn’t the stupidest thing ever done since W said “mission accomplished,” I managed to get my penis in contact with his and—humped. Now do you get the picture?”

Mr. P clapped his hands. “Perfect.”

“Oh, so far from perfect.” He fell back against the large Asian throw rug. “Why did I do it? Why?”

“Excellent question. Why did you do it?”

“He turns me on.”

“What?”

Belle sat up, in his best Frankenstein’s monster imitation. “He turns me on like a large neon light.”

“Because he helped your friend?”

“Way before he helped Judy. Before he helped me, in fact.”

Mr. P smiled. “So you acknowledge that he’s helped you?”

“Oh hell, Mr. P, I’m so confused. I mean, getting won in a poker game doesn’t exactly kick a relationship off on a sterling foot. Plus, that was after he seemed to be stalking me. I assumed he was trying to get me here to—you know—screw me instead of my father.”

“Ah, I see. And now you’ve thrown at him the very thing you assumed he wanted—and he refused it.”

“In a word—yes. I don’t know what to think.”

“There’s only one answer, my dear. Outside the box.”

My Review:
Rob “Belle” Belleterre has a solid love for his crumbling family. His mother died a few years ago and his father, once the dignified head of their small cosmetics company, has devolved into alcoholism and gambling, aided by Belle’s two older brothers. Belle wants the company to succeed and has developed a miracle face cream that will be the company’s best moneymaker–but his father’s mismanagement not only crushes that dream, it sends Belle to NYC to work for Magnus Strong, a direct and powerful competitor.

Belle isn’t happy to be uprooted, and he’s less happy that his family has seemingly abandoned him, but he doesn’t find Magnus, the scarred but compassionate CEO, to be an adversary. On the contrary, Magnus is beloved by his staff, and eager to make Belle comfortable. A stranger in New York, Belle is put into digs that are more plush than a millionaire might be able to afford. And, when his best friend Judy gets bad news, Magnus is the first person to make Judy’s scary diagnosis something positive. In fact, Belle’s never been so motivated to perform–and I mean in the workplace; He’s a consummate professional. Also, he practically climbs Magnus at his desk. Rawr. #Gratitude

This is a modern fairytale, a retelling of Beauty and the Beast, and I really enjoyed it. There are some campy bits and I took those in stride, because of the fairytale setting. This is the third Pennymaker tale I’ve read, and I think I like it best. The whole vibe is mainly upbeat, with a sweet and strong love story. Magnus is scarred because he wants to punish himself for a childhood mistake, and Belle’s so captivated by Magnus’ compassion that he fails to see the outer dents in Magnus’ appearance. It’s a mating of souls and hearts, so much so that Belle never wants Magnus to change, even as he has the resources to hand. Magnus is a great man, and he’s so vulnerable regarding his facial and emotional scars, but Belle’s love helps him feel acceptable–even lovable.

Belle’s family is a bit cartoonish, again the fairytale, but they are a back-burner element of the plot. I adored Belle’s devotion to Judy, and his pure love for Magnus. Naturally, there’s a misunderstanding/setback, which causes everyone to pause, but it’s easily remedied once Belle takes his own destiny in hand. Expect some yummy sexytimes, and an HEA to hang one’s dreams upon.

Interested? You can find BEAUTY INC on Goodreads, Dreamspinner Press, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, iTunes, and AllRomance.

****GIVEAWAY****

Click on this Rafflecopter giveaway link for your chance to win a $20 GC.
Good luck and keep reading my friends!

About the Author:
Tara Lain writes the Beautiful Boys of Romance in LGBT erotic romance novels that star her unique, charismatic heroes. Her first novel was published in January of 2011 and she’s now somewhere around book 23. Her best­selling novels have garnered awards for Best Series, Best Contemporary Romance, Best Ménage, Best LGBT Romance, Best Gay Characters, and Tara has been named Best Writer of the Year in the LRC Awards. In her other job, Tara owns an advertising and public relations firm. She often does workshops on both author promotion and writing craft.

She lives with her soul­mate husband and her soul­mate dog in Laguna Beach, California, a pretty seaside town where she sets a lot of her books. Passionate about diversity, justice, and new experiences, Tara says on her tombstone it will say “Yes”!

You can find Tara at:

Thanks for popping in and keep reading my friends!

Heart and Soul: DAMNED IF YOU DO-A Review

Hi there! Today I want to share a review for a sweet supernatural M/M romance from Marie Sexton. You know I adored WINTER ORANGES, so I had to go back for another of her tales. DAMNED IF YOU DO is a story of a devil (or demon, whatevs) in danger of being demoted if he doesn’t harvest some souls. And, man it’s a problem when he falls for the guy whose soul he’s determined to collect.

Damned If You DoAbout the book:
The path to temptation is paved with a hellish amount of paperwork.
Soul acquisition is a drag, but if Abaddon doesn’t catch up on his quota, he could be demoted to scooping poop for the Hounds of Hell. With a deadline hanging over him, he heads for the Bible Belt, looking for the perfect combination of sweetness and challenge.

Seth is a blind musician, part of a traveling tent revival. He’s cute, mystically talented, and quotes the Bible at every turn. His soul is pure enough to fill Abaddon’s quota for months to come, and Abaddon is determined to claim it.

The problem? There’s the revival foreman who watches Abaddon’s every move. Then there’s the mystery of Seth’s many unusual talents. Lastly, there’s Abaddon himself. He’s beginning to like Seth a bit too much. Maybe Seth deserves something better than damnation.

But Hell’s agenda isn’t negotiable, and time is running out. If Abaddon doesn’t play his cards right, he could condemn both of them to the worst fate of all—an eternity apart.

Warning: Contains a Bible-quoting twink and an irreverent devil who’ll do anything to avoid going “back to the office”. Also, snakes. Lots and lots of snakes.

My Review:
Abaddon’s a mid-level devil who’s required to collect a certain quota of souls, but not all souls are equal. Like, corrupting one pure soul is worth more than a dozen athletes dying to Go Pro…for example. Abaddon really dislikes soul harvesting. He avoids it, at all cost, but he’s gotten a warning due to his lack of productivity and is due to be demoted if he doesn’t get one soul in the next month.

So, Abaddon searches high-and-low for a sterling soul, one that will push his quota far back. He locates one such soul, a shining beacon of a man, in Seth. Seth is the blind virtuoso who plays for a tent revival group which travels the southeastern US. He’s also more than just a man–as Abaddon soon learns.

Seth is 21, innocent, sweet and complete catnip for Abaddon. His soul-hunger is off the charts whenever he’s near Seth. Seth was an orphan, dropped at the doorstep of the revival, and adopted by the late revival master. He gets along with his surrogate family, and truly believes in the word of The Lord, but he wants a true love, and he’s both a virgin and gay. It’s interesting and cool that the revivalists are totally unaffected by that. The more time Abaddon spends in Seth’s presence, the more he begins to realize that Seth is mystical in a way that’s nearly unheard of. I don’t want to give too much away, but expect trials with snakes and faith healing that works.

In the meantime, Abaddon is plotting his harvest of Seth’s soul, and he’s also really wrecked over it. How can he condemn such a good man to an eternity in Hell? There are surely things Abaddon can trade Seth to make his human life more bearable, but will Seth accept them, knowing these gifts come from a Devil’s hand? As atonement, Abaddon plans to pull every string he can to ensure that he and Seth will be able to connect in Hell, and spend their eternity together. It’s still cold comfort for Abaddon…

It’s a quick read and an interesting story. I do love me a conflicted devil, and Abaddon is really a fun character to enjoy. The scenes in Hell are amusing and made me chuckle many a time. The unfolding romance was tender and touching, and I swooned for Seth just as hard as Abaddon did. I hadn’t quite predicted the full path of this book, which charmed me, as a reader. I loved the positive portrayal of the revivalists, and the stalwart and battle-ready chaperone that Seth and Abaddon had to avoid whenever they wanted some alone-time. There’s a heady build up of sexual tension, and a sweet love that’s on the page.

Interested? You can find DAMNED IF YOU DO on Goodreads, Samhain Books, Amazon, Barnes and Noble and AllRomance. I received a review copy of this book via NetGalley.

Marie SextonAbout the Author:
Marie Sexton lives in Colorado. She’s a fan of just about anything that involves muscular young men piling on top of each other. In particular, she loves the Denver Broncos and enjoys going to the games with her husband. Her imaginary friends often tag along. Marie has one daughter, two cats, and one dog, all of whom seem bent on destroying what remains of her sanity. She loves them anyway.

Visit Marie’s website, follow her on twitter, friend her on Facebook, or join her for Coffee and Porn in the Morning.

Thanks for popping in my friends, and keep reading!

GOLDFISH Out of Water–A Review

Hi there! Today I’m sharing a review for a terrifyingly funny contemporary YA story from Nat Luurtsema. GOLDFISH is a humorous sports romance, in a way, about a British girl whose championship dreams are busted and how she gets her life back together in the void.

GoldfishAbout the book:
Lou Brown is one of the fastest swimmers in the county. She’s not boasting, she really is. So things are looking pretty rosy the day of the Olympic time-trials. With her best mate Hannah by her side, Lou lines up by the edge of the pool, snaps her goggles on and bends into her dive…

Everything rests on this race. It’s Lou’s thing.

… or it was. She comes dead last and to top it all off Hannah sails through leaving a totally broken Lou behind.

Starting again is never easy, particularly when you’re the odd-one out in a family of insanely beautiful people and a school full of social groups way too intimidating to join. Where do you go from here? Finding a new thing turns out to be the biggest challenge Lou’s ever faced and opens up a whole new world of underwater somersaults, crazy talent shows, bitchy girls and a great big load of awkward boy chat.

Lou Brown guides us through the utter humiliation of failure with honesty, sass and a keen sense of the ridiculous. This girl will not be beaten.

My Review:
I woke my hubs, twice, reading this book in bed and laughing uncontrollably.

Louise is a 15 y/o champion swimmer, dubbed “Goldfish” by her family for taking home so many gold medals, but she fails spectacularly at the youth time trials and doesn’t get accepted the High Performance Training Center. Hannah, her BFF, does get accepted. Lou falls into a funk. Without swimming and without Hannah, Lou has no friends and no activities. She’s lanky and odd, not perky and cute like her elder sister, Laverne. Lou and Lav–both short names for the toilet–part of the understated and charming British humor that kept me constantly sniggering.

Lou has few goals for her time in school: learn, make friends, get by. But she struggles to even do these things. She has too much time on her hands and spends hours ruminating over the lack of swimming in her life. One night she sneaks into the pool and she’s approached by three older boys who observe her screwing around in the water. They are a dance group and want to be on Britain’s Hidden Talent but they need a new hook, as they’ve been refused a tryout; too many boy dance teams, it seems.

They, Pete, Roman and Gabe, think Lou can teach them to perform a dance routine underwater–not synchroswim exactly–and it’s a new mission for Lou. Something to strive for. Enter inexplicable and enormously entertaining comedies of errors. Pratfalls abound. Whatever can go wrong, will. And I laughed so hard! The odd-ball shenanigans caught me just right, and I really had no defense against Lou’s dead-pan delivery.

So this summer I stopped swimming and met our postman. And I finally got all that crying done that I’ve been meaning to do for ages, so that’s good, isn’t it? Plus I really explored the concept of Lying in Bed All Day Feeling Nothing but Despair. A summer lived right to the edges.

My hair doesn’t grow down; it goes out, like Hannah’s. We don’t look like the princess in a fairy tale. We look like the enchanted vines that covered her castle for a hundred years.

Laverne is sixteen, with glossy black hair, actual boobs, and a tattoo that Mom and Dad don’t know about.
Nature made her and then, a year later, took the same ingredients and made me. It’s baffling. Good thing they didn’t have a third child; it would probably have a face like a knee.

(Note: I barely avoided soiling myself while reading this book… #WeakBladder #TooMuchLaughing)

So, yeah, plot. There’s a power dynamic with Lou’s former coach, and mean girls, and general isolation, and unexpected friendships, and a touch of romance, and a dramatic rescue for a confused athlete. It’s really a sweet, funny story that manages to appear light and breezy while also having a strong story line and a wellspring of emotion. Lou needs to start over from a pretty harsh setback. I’m not sure why she can’t simply swim with her school’s team, but part of that stems from callous coaching and mean girls. I can’t truly believe she was so unwelcome, but that’s the story and the reminders of her bullying are swift and sharp as dagger wounds.

The quest for fame is brutal, and captivating. Lou is engaging. Her self-deprecation is absolutely cutting, and shockingly humorous. Her family is odd and quirky and endearing. They do what’s right even when it’s the opposite of convenient. The boys, who are far too cool for Lou, end up being alright guys and great friends. The budding romance is tender and sweet and unfolds in the final pages, but was deftly foreshadowed.

Interested? You can find GOLDFISH on Goodreads, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble. I received a review copy of this book via NetGalley.

About the Author:

Nat Luurtsema is a BAFTA-nominated screenwriter, a BAFTA Rocliffe alumni, stand-up comic, author, actor and a third of sketch group Jigsaw.

She has just finished directing WYRDOES, a comedy feminist ‘Macbeth’, with backing from Film London, Film4 and the British Arts Council. It will be a part of the Shakespeare Lives worldwide tour, which will play to an audience of 500 million.

Nat plays Tallulah Bankhead in FLORENCE FOSTER JENKINS, directed by Stephen Frears.

Nat is developing two feature films and adapting the novel Spilt Milk Black Coffee by Helen Cross, for Mighty Atom Entertainment.

Nat’s latest book is a Young Adult novel – GIRL OUT OF WATER – to be published June 2016 in the UK, Germany, France and Italy. It will simultaneously publish as GOLDFISH in USA.

You can catch up to Nat online on her website and twitter.

Thanks for popping in and keep reading my friends!