Halloween is just around the corner, so The Blog of Sid Love & Dreamspinner Press have joined hands to give you a special reason to celebrate! An event whereby we will feature four newest releases from DSP in form of guest posts, author interviews and giveaway contests! And that is not all – there will be an amazing contest at the end of this month. On 31st October, a lucky winner will be drawn from these four contests to win a goodie pack that will consist of the four books up for grab over the month! So don’t just sit there, hurry up and participate. To increase your chance of winning, leave a comment on all Halloween Special posts as well as the giveaway contests of any DSP authors that feature this month.

We kick off this event, starting with one of the most popular DSP authors – Amy Lane. Her third book in the Johnnies series released just recently and she has happily agreed to giveaway an ebook copy of Ethan in Gold. Check out as she stops by to share what’s so worth it in relationships …

Worth It 

By
Amy Lane

One of the tough things to do as you’re finding your way along a particular couple’s path is to figure out what a real happy ending would be.  No happy ending is too perfect—even the real ones.  The key to a real happy ending, or one that feels authentic, is the idea that if stuff comes up, these two people will figure out how to handle it.

I was pissed at my husband today—seriously, flamingly pissed.  Talking to myself pissed.  Talking to myself in the bathroom pissed.

So there I was, taking my sweet time, washing my hands, making faces in the mirror, having that imaginary conversation where I level my beloved off at the knees, and then when I open the door, there’s my Mate.  He’s smiling sheepishly.

“You were talking to yourself.”

“Yes.  Yes I was.”

“Were you yelling at me?”

“Yes.  Yes I was.”

“I’m really sorry.”

*sigh *  “That’s okay.”

Because the thing is, as pissed as I was, I don’t have the short-term goal of the relationship in mind.  We are not in a place in our lives where I can storm out and slam a door and fight with him at the top of my lungs—we have kids for sweet hell’s sake, and we’re obligated to act like grown ups. If the problem was a long-term difficulty, it needs to be discussed.  If it’s a brief irritation, an apology and a make up are plenty good enough.

That was the sort of thinking Jonah and Ethan had to do in Ethan in Gold.  They had a long-term difficulty—a couple of them, in fact.  Jonah’s family was falling apart, and Ethan was in porn.  It doesn’t get much more complex than that (and if it does, don’t tell me, I may take it as a challenge.)  So it was essential that they become friends first—because they had to care about each other to make the rest of the relationship worth it.  And that, in a way, is the crux of any relationship.  The idea of “This person has pissed me off now, but is that enough to destroy what we’ve built?”  Or, in Ethan and Jonah’s case, the potential of what they had to build.

It’s a tough idea—and the reason many relationships fail.  I think the reason this couple—or any couple in fiction—gives us hope is that they remind us what’s important.  I know that today, while I was whisper cursing my Mate, all I really needed was his sheepish smile and a reminder that one screw-up doth not a divorce make.

Maybe all Mate needed was a reminder that I’d rather vent my spleen on the potty and the mirror than on him to remember that I was a good person not to get pissed at him!  Either way, like Ethan and Jonah (but with certainly less cause!) most people who stay together do eventually remember the long-term goal.

And it’s usually so very worth it.

.:.: ETHAN IN GOLD :.:.

Ethan in Gold (Johnnies #3)BLURB: Evan Costa learned from a very early age that there was no such thing as unconditional love and that it was better to settle for what you could get instead of expecting the world to give you what you need. As Ethan, porn model for Johnnies, he gets exactly what he wants—comradeship and physical contact on trade—and he is perfectly satisfied with that. He’s sure of it.

Jonah Stevens has spent most of his adult life helping to care for his sister and trying to keep his beleaguered family from fraying at the edges. He’s had very little time to work on his confidence or his body for that matter. When Jonah meets Ethan, he doesn’t see the hurt child or the shamelessly slutty porn star. He sees a funny, sexy, confident man who—against the odds—seems to like Jonah in spite of his very ordinary, but difficult, life.

Sensing a kindred spirit and a common interest, Ethan thinks a platonic friendship with Jonah won’t violate his fair trade rules of sex and touch, but Jonah has different ideas. Ethan’s pretty sure his choice of jobs has stripped away all hope of a real relationship, but Jonah wants the whole package—the sexy man, the vulnerable boy, the charming companion who works so hard to make other people happy. Jonah wants to prove that underneath the damage Ethan has lived with all his life, he’s still gold with promise and the ability to love.

BUY LINKS: Dreamspinner Press  ::  Amazon  ::  All Romance eBooks

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Image of Amy LaneAmy Lane has four children, two cats, an aging dog, a crumbling mortgage and an indulgent spouse.  She also has too damned much yarn, a penchant for action adventure movies, and a need to know that somewhere in all the pain is a story of Wuv, Twu Wuv, which she continues to believe in to this day!  She writes fantasy, urban fantasy, and m/m romance–and if you give her enough diet coke and chocolate, she’ll bore you to tears with why those three genres go together.  She’ll also tell you that sacrifices, large and small, are worth the urge to write.

Amy Lane on Facebook  ||  Amy Lane on Twitter  ||  Amy Lane’s Website

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Leave a comment to this post in order to get a chance of winning a free ebook copy of Ethan in Gold.

Don’t forget to “FOLLOW THIS BLOG”. The widget is on the top of this page where you can either subscribe to this blog via email or if you are a wordpress user, you can “Follow” it through your READER!

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CONTEST WILL END ON 13th October, 2013 @ 11:59 PM Central Time!!

Welcome!!

Posted: April 9, 2014 by sidlove in Uncategorized

to my personalized author blog!!

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Would you like something yummy??? :P

Reviewed by Nikyta

The Choosing by Annabelle Jacobs eBookTITLE: The Choosing
AUTHOR: Annabelle Jacobs
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
LENGTH: 210 pages
BLURB: Jerath is facing the biggest problem of his life. When boys in his shapeshifter village Eladir get their fangs, they must endure a coming-of-age rite called the Choosing, so they can take on their animal form. The rite is performed on the full moon, but the trouble is the Choosing involves having sex with a girl, and Jerath’s only interested in boys. Even if he manages to somehow get through the rite, he doesn’t know if he’ll ever find a mate in his village, where opposite-sex couples are the norm.

Even worse, he may miss the rite altogether after raiders attack his home and take several young men prisoner. Jerath will need the help of warriors if he’s to free the captive shapeshifters, so with his best friend, Serim, he flees south to find aid. Along the way, they meet Meren, a handsome warrior whose attraction to Jerath is instant and very much returned. But with the next full moon approaching and available time for the prisoners to undergo the Choosing running out, Jerath’s love life is far from his only worry.

REVIEW:

I’m going to shamelessly say that covers are the first thing that draw me in so when I saw this one, I was intrigued. Then I found out that it was not only fantasy but had shifters and I just knew that I had to read it… and I’m very glad I did.

Jerath is eagerly awaiting going through The Choosing, where he can finally find out the nature of his animal. Unfortunately, he can’t do that until his fangs come in, which don’t seem to be in any hurry to grow. One day Jerath and his friend Serim are catching fish as part of their chores only to realize on the way back to their village that raiders have taken over the village and captured some of their people to sell as slaves. Scared for their lives and their captured loved ones, they try to seek help with a southern village, Chastil. The journey to Chastil is long and tiring but comes with a few unexpected surprises. Jerath thought he’d never find a mate but when he meets Meren, one of the warriors from Chastil, that just might change his whole future. The real question, however, is whether Meren and his people can help Jerath free his fellow shifters and whether they’ll both survive it to be able to see where their connection leaves them?

I must say, I wasn’t expecting to enjoy this story as much as I did. I found Jerath amusing. He’s fierce and possessive but sweet and innocent. It was endearing to see him flustered one moment but then aggressive the next. Meren was the opposite in that he was bold and confident but then easily melted whenever Jerath decided to take the reins. I adored these two and the connection that they make. It’s sweet but intense, loving and hot. I wished there had been more of them because while I feel like I know them, I don’t feel like I know them as well as I could.

The characters are definitely a great addition to this book, however, I think the main appeal was the world the author created. It’s complex but easy to understand. I loved that shifters were freely known about and even that there were whole communities dedicated to them. I liked that the women were born knowing their shifter animal while the men had to wait until they completed The Choosing to know theirs. It added mystery and conflict to the story and made it interesting seeing how the rituals were done. I also liked the fact that it wasn’t just ‘expected’ that they were going to eventually shift but there was always that fear for Jerath that it might not happen.

I had a few niggles with this story. Mostly, I felt like sometimes Serim (Jerath’s female friend) outshined not only Jerath and Meren but the relationship they were building. At times, I felt like the bond between Serim and Jerath was stronger than the one between Meren and Jerath. (This is actually even more prominent when you look at the cover and see the black panther (Serim’s shifter form), which leaves me wondering why is there a black panther on the cover? I would think there would be a jaguar instead.) Personally, that lessened my enjoyment at times because I wanted to see more of the bond between Jerath and Meren not be reminded of the connection between Serim and Jerath. Beyond that, there are a few inconsistencies but I would have loved to see more of Meren’s culture since it seems so different, yet similar, to Jerath’s culture.

Readers should be warned, however, that there is m/f sex in this story. While necessary to the development of the story arc and of Jerath, I know some readers would appreciate being told of this. I’m not all that fond of girly bits in my stories and while I didn’t exactly like this part, I did think it needed to happen so I was fine with it overall.

All in all, even with my issues, I absolutely adored this one. It’s refreshing in a way, unique in others in how different it is from other shifter stories. Add to that, the world is quite fascinating and engaging and the bond that Jerath and Meren ultimately develop was nice to see. I’m hoping Ms. Jacobs decides to write more stories in this world because I’d love to explore it further, especially if that means seeing more of Meren’s culture and rituals.

Definitely recommended for those looking for a different kind of shifter story with an interesting journey and a good HEA.

Nikyta rates it – star_review

BUY LINKS: Dreamspinner Press

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Nikyta is one of the official reviewers on The Blog of Sid Love.

To read all her reviews, click the link: NIKYTA’S REVIEWS
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Reviewed by Elizabetta

18585761TITLE: The Night Visitor
AUTHOR: Ewan Creed
PUBLISHER: Wilde City Press
LENGTH: 50 pages
BLURB: Everyone likes sexually exploring. Finding things that turn you on, experimenting to see what gets you off… Hot partners and scenarios that scare some people and make others slick with desire… But what happens when the fantasies you’re living out are in your dreams? And what happens when these dreams seem to transcend into the real world as well? Could these be the creation of your hot, sultry and sexy mind, or is there something more to it? The Night Visitor exposes one man’s journey to sexual fulfillment and fantasy… but is it real?

REVIEW:

Night Visitor is an interesting play on dreams versus reality. What do dreams mean, what are they trying to tell us?

Each time he sleeps Kevin finds himself back in a recurring dream, it’s not a nightmare, but is disturbing in its insistence. He returns to the same run-down part of town, same deteriorating buildings, walking down the same street; he encounters the same unknown, tattooed man. Kevin names him ‘the night visitor’ and is drawn to his bad-boy “tasty piece of very rough trade” attitude.

The story is disjointed as the dreams break up at various points, transitioning in and out in fits and starts. We’re thrown back and forth in time, between Kevin’s present reality and his past. Each time he dreams, though, the dreams become a little more elaborate, he goes a little hotter and heavier with the sexy ‘visitor’ as we are fed more information. This all works nicely to build a surreal, other-worldly atmosphere.

Kevin is a real kinkster, he likes his sex down and dirty. There is an intense, pornographic bath-house scene featuring public sex and voyeurism. “Hear you like to put on shows…”. Is it real, though? We’re left off-kilter once again as Kevin is lost in a world where reality mashes up with fantasy, manifesting when he sleeps.

The author is adept at spinning out Kevin’s backstory, the ‘why’ of his present state of mental unrest. He knows the dreams mean something, are trying to tell him something. The mystery is, what?

I liked this story, a kind of waking dream within-a-dream idea, it’s an interesting study. I thought the author built the mystery and momentum well, and everything comes full circle nicely in the end. It’s a good bit of writing and works in the short story setting. Nice job, all in all.

Elizabetta rates it –  535px-3-5_stars-svg

BUY LINKS: Wilde City Press

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Elizabetta is one of the official reviewers on The Blog of Sid Love.

To read all her reviews, click the link: ELIZABETTA’S REVIEWS
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Hello people,

The Blog of Sid Love is celebrating and not for just one reason. For the ones who don’t know, TBSL completed its 7 months yesterday and this has been a memorable journey for me as well as my reviewers. The authors, my followers and readers have been amazing in participating in our events and following our reviews. Your words of appreciation always encourages us to do better.

So on this special occasion, we have a big event planned for you all. Also, we are going reveal something quite amazing to you (Well, it amazes me at least :P ) and we hope you like whatever it is and support us.

Event Details:

We have a new FB page, which you can find here: https://www.facebook.com/theblogofsidlove

Author Cardeno C. will be taking over this page TODAY between ONE PM TO TWO PM Pacific Time and you can chat with the author while the author will reveal some facts about his upcoming book “More Than Everything”. There will be a contest whereby you will get a chance to win a free ebook copy of any ONE of Cardeno’s books. So be there and participate!

We ALSO have a new twitter page, the link to which is: https://twitter.com/BlogofSidLove

Rhys Ford will take over this twitter feed and chat with you between the same time as Cardeno will be on FB. She will run a similar contest over there and will tell you about her new book “Fish and Ghosts”.

Like and Follow the two accounts so that you will be entered into both the contests. At the end of the chats, both the authors will choose a winner and also make an announcement for us! So be there on time.. they will let you know about how you can also win a goodie pack that comes from The Blog of Sid Love :D

More details on that coming soon!

So, gear up people and show us some LOVE!

Reviewed by Carissa

Serenading Stanley by John Inman eBookTITLE: Serenading Stanley
AUTHOR: John Inman
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
LENGTH: 234 pages
BLURB: Welcome to the Belladonna Arms, a rundown little apartment building perched atop a hill in downtown San Diego, home to the city’s lost and lovelorn. Shy archaeology student Stanley Sternbaum has just moved in and fills his time quietly observing his eccentric neighbors, avoiding his hellion mother, and trying his best to go unnoticed… which proves to be a problem when it comes to fellow tenant Roger Jane. Smitten, the hunky nurse with beautiful green eyes does everything in his power to woo Stanley, but Stanley has always lived a quiet life, too withdrawn from the world to take a chance on love. Especially with someone as beautiful as Roger Jane.

While Roger tries to batter down Stanley’s defenses, Stanley turns to his new neighbors to learn about love: Ramon, who’s not afraid to give his heart to the wrong man; Sylvia, the trans who just wants to be a woman, and the secret admirer who loves her just the way she is; Arthur, the aging drag queen who loves them all, expecting nothing in return—and Roger, who has been hurt once before but is still willing to risk his heart on Stanley, if Stanley will only look past his own insecurities and let him in.

REVIEW:

“Stuck in the dead grass by the front steps leading up to the entrance of the apartment building was another sign.  This one was handwritten on a slab of cardboard and stapled to the wooden stake pounded into the ground.  The lettering on this sign was rendered in pink Magic Marker.  It read ‘VACANCY.’  And under that, this time scrawled in magenta Magic Marker and sprinkled liberally with glitter, were the words ‘TO APPLY PLEASE BE CUTE.’”

Stanley knows two things for certain: he would do almost anything to avoid moving back in with his mother, and he is abominable at interacting with anyone not long, long dead.  Also, he might just be a little in love with Roger Jane.  OK, that’s three things, but to be fair, he really didn’t want to be in love with Roger.  Not really.  Even if only the thought of those godlike lips made him tremble.  And alright, he also knows that Arthur needs some serious make-up tips–and that he most definitely shouldn’t get them from Ramon.  And that Sylvia is one hell of a woman–despite having more parts than she ever desired.  He also knows that living on floor six of the Belladonna Oven, er, Arms, was likely kill him–or at least Arthur–eventually.  So, it turns out Stanley actually knows quite a bit.

He certainly knows enough to know that Roger will never look at him twice.  What with Roger being a god, in all his beautiful nursing glory, and poor ol’ Stanley entirely mortal, and entirely aware of it.  Except Roger did look–a lot more than twice–and now Stanley doesn’t know what to think.

I am a big fan of John Inman, so I may’ve been counting down the days till I could get my hands on Serenading Stanley.  And I may also have spent four hours curled up on my bed giggling like a stoner with a pet watermelon to play with (um…just read the book, you’ll totally understand) when I finally got it.  There may also have been kissing involved (hey! I’m not that kind of girl…it was a quick, discreet peck on the screen) when Stanley manned up and got all declare-y.  This may have all happened…but the brownies seemed to have clouded my memories a bit…so I’ll guess we’ll never know for sure.

What I do know is that once again Inman gave us a book chalked full with pithy humor and a whole host of characters to fall in love with.  This book is no two-man show.  Yes, we are given god-like Roger, who will use every tool in his arsenal to woo the recalcitrant Stanley.  And poor, earthly Stanley, who’ll use every trick in his, to avoid a broken heart.  But it is the cross-dressing building manager, the lovely Sylvia–who would do anything to make her body fit her soul–and even the kleptomaniac, the beautician, and the masseur, that make the story whole.  Without them Stanley would never have his Roger, and without them we would never have such a fun and truly heartwarming tale of friendship, love, and beauty disasters.

If you are looking for an angst-filled book, than I’d advise you to look elsewhere.  Yes, we have Stanley issues, what with the whole insecurity thing, but it is nothing to bog the story down.  This is a fun, light read, that will have you awwing and giggling away long into the night.  Roger’s insistence, and Stanley’s reluctance, play nicely off each other.  And boy, when Roger wants to make a point, he does it beautifully–and with tongue.  He will also not let his Little Mouse scurry away simply because he fears the big What If.  Plus, when a man comes bearing a watermelon–and something a lot more fun–how can you turn him away?  I loved these two together, and I loved watching Roger serenade his way into Stanley’s heart (in a totally non-musical way–because apparently that would be disastrous).

Between the entrancing tenants of the Belladonna Arms, and the hard-won love affair of Stanley and Roger, I was completely won over by this book.  And Sylvia nearly broke my poor heart.  That girl deserves everything that she got–and so much more.  To be trapped inside a body that never matches you, is a terrible thing.  To have yourself denied because of money, even worse.  I loved that Inman was able to bring Sylvia–and all the rest of the tenants–to life is such a wonderful, and highly amusing, way.  I would have liked a little more tension, near the end, but I think I’ll take the sight of Pete on his knees, any day.

Don’t know what else to say, but that I loved it and I’m glad I trusted Inman with my oh-so-fragile bookish heart.  I totally and completely recommend you read this book when you’ve hit angst overload and need to remember how to smile.  Or if you want to find out just how sweet a twizzler can be.

Carissa rates it – star_review

BUY LINKS: Dreamspinner Press

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Carissa is one of the official reviewers on The Blog of Sid Love.

To read all her reviews, click the link: CARISSA’S REVIEWS
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How do you see the important people in your life, and how do they see you?

Those were the questions I had in mind when I started to write Salvage, my latest release from Dreamspinner Press. It was a challenge to reveal the key differences in how the characters perceived each other, until I had a little help from my boss, and from one of my sons.

Sometimes you need input from other people to see your own flesh and blood very clearly.

In Salvage, the Cooper family has been apart for five years. Fleeting visits home during that time weren’t enough to change each other’s opinions. On the other hand, I see my kids just about every single day. Does that mean I understand them as they really are now? My boss doesn’t think so.

A while ago, we spotted my son and his partner through our office window. My teen wore jeans that were ragged at the hem, that were more hole than denim,and that showed his neon-yellow underwear. He has his father’s curly hair, and boy it could have used a thorough combing. My son and his partner held hands as they passed by, deep in animated conversation, oblivious to our spying.

Just as I was internally making a list — throw away those awful pants, book a haircut, and for goodness sake, find him a belt! — my boss said,

“He’s so happy, isn’t he? Every single time I see him, he’s smiling.”

Had we looked through the same pane of glass?

How come she saw him so differently to me?

Somehow, my perception of my almost-adult son had gotten locked on the young child I used to lay out clothes for every morning.It took a pane of glass and someone else’s words to make me shift my focus. Of course my son is wonderful!

In Salvage, Gabe too focuses on past perceptions, and I use glass as a device to illustrate how those perceptions can change. There are two moments where Gabe sees his father, Coop, through a windowpane, and those two points are a key part of the story. At another stage, Gabe holds a pane of glass between himself and his sister’s boyfriend. Can he ever see the kid who outed him in high school as a good man?

Most importantly in this love story, Gabe glimpses his new neighbor Scott through a window thick with grime. That blurred and smudged sight leaves Gabe full of questions. Time, and listening to the people closest to him, helps himsee Scott clearly.

Salvage Blurb

SalvageFive years ago, an accident fractured Gabe Cooper’s family. Believing it was broken beyond repair, Gabe and his best friend Jamie Carlson left Minnesota behind for San Diego sunshine and college. Now another crisis brings Gabe home to help his ailing father, and he finally has to face the guilt that kept him away for so long.

Scott Stark also returns to Minnesota, with his young niece and nephew in tow, shouldering new family responsibilities. While Gabe comes to grips with his past, Scott struggles to accept his present role as a substitute parent, caring for two children, each with different needs. As Gabe and Scott get to know each other, reclaiming family life almost seems possible. Only two things stand in the way of love: Gabe’s unresolved relationship with Jamie, and Scott’s plan to leave Minnesota as soon as he can. Both men will have to accept past mistakes if they want to salvage a future together, and time is running out.

Buy links: Dreamspinner Press  ::  Amazon US  ::  Amazon UK  ::  All Romance eBooks

About this author

Con Riley lives on the wild and rugged Devonshire coast, with her head in the clouds, and her feet in the Atlantic Ocean.

Injury curtailed her enjoyment of outdoor pursuits, so writing fiction now fills her free time instead. Love, loss and redemption shape her romance stories, and her characters are flawed in ways that makes them live and breathe.

When not people watching, or wrangling her own boy band of teen sons, she spends time staring at the sea from her kitchen window. If you see her, don’t disturb her—she’s probably thinking up new plots.

Con Riley’s Website

Con Riley on Twitter

Con Riley on Facebook

GIVEAWAY

Leave a comment to this post in order to get a chance of winning a free ebook copy of Salvage.

Don’t forget to “FOLLOW THIS BLOG”. The widget is on the top of this page where you can either subscribe to this blog via email or if you are a wordpress user, you can “Follow” it through your READER!

Why do you need to follow? - To get instant updates on the winner announcement, or other giveaway events that are planned to be hosted on this blog or simply for the reviews and author interviews that are posted here.

If you are on Facebook, join our official Group: The Blog of Sid Love

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CONTEST WILL END ON 18th October, 2013 @ 11:59 PM Central Time!!

Reviewed by Elizabetta

Bump in the Night, edited by Rachel HaimowitzTITLE: Bump in the Night
AUTHORS: Heidi Belleau, Ally Blue, Kari Gregg, Peter Hansen, Laylah Hunter, Brien Michaels & Sam Schooler
EDITOR: Rachel Haimowitz
PUBLISHER: Riptide Publishing
LENGTH: 210 pages
BLURB: Turn off the lights . . . and turn on your darkest fantasies.

Demon pacts. Ghostly possessions. Monsters lurking in the depths. The things that go bump in the night frighten us, but they also intrigue us. Fascinate us. Even turn us on.

Join us as fan favorites Ally Blue and Kari Gregg bring over-amorous aquatic beasts to life with their mythic twists on the Siren and the monster in the lake. Erotic horror pros Heidi Belleau, Sam Schooler, and Brien Michaels show us just how sexy scary can be with a pair of demon deals destined to curl your toes and set your heart thrashing. And literary masters Laylah Hunter and Peter Hansen weave haunting worlds where ghosts and dead lovers can touch our hearts (and other, naughtier places too . . .) and teach us lessons from beyond the grave.

By turns exciting, evocative, and exquisitely explicit, the stories in Bump in the Night are sure to scratch your sexy paranormal itch. Explore your wildest fantasies with us in this collection of dark erotic tales.

REVIEW:

This is one of the strongest and most provocative anthologies I’ve read in the slash genre. Each story is unique in its own special horror and all are well crafted. Warning: this is more horror than erotica. And while there’s little to no romance, there’s plenty of sexual intoxication. There are a lot of disturbing elements. If rape or dubious consent is a trigger, proceed with caution.

The endings are more ‘happy-for-now’ or even ‘this is as good as it’s gonna get’. But isn’t that what life in the ‘Twilight Zone’ is about? I have to admit that I gobbled these up, thrilled by the story-telling.

There is a common thread through the stories summed up by a line lifted from one of them, “I hadn’t stopped to consider the cost.” Just in time for Halloween, this is highly recommended for those who want a darker, no-holds-barred read. Please heed the tags.

Overall anthology rating - star_review

Resurrection Man by Laylah Hunter
Tags: historical, paranormal, gore

An interesting turn on the Frankenstein story, this is a perfect example of the adage, “be careful what you wish for”…  A young man desperately in love, practices the dark art of necromancy and sells his soul to bring a beloved lover back from the dead.

“The flesh is scarcely the trouble… the installation of a soul in flesh is the domain of God.”

This feels like a chapter out of a larger piece (which means I want more) but works fine as is. Chillingly horrific and melancholy.

Rated: four-stars_0

Mating Season by Kari Gregg
Tags: paranormal, monsters, tentacle-sex, slave/captive, non/dubious-consensual/rape, cock/ball torture, gore, bondage, medical kink

Oh*my*freaking*lord

This is over-the-top wickedness with a cherry on the top, and the bit of devious plotting keeps it from being purely torture porn. The author throws everything but the kitchen sink into this feast of tentacle sex depravity…

A lusty monster with very active suction-cupped appendages…

“… the suckers on the underside of the tentacles nuzzled and guzzled down my cock like dozens of tiny mouths slurping… siphoning… tenderly squeezing…”

Deception, bondage, non-con/dub-con/rape, mpreg, stuffing, fisting… torture…you name it.

Did I like it?

Yes… yes, I did.

It starts off innocently enough. Danny is on a back-to-nature camping trip in a bucolic setting… cue birds, bees, butterflies…

Then begins a descent into nightmare-hell as he is tricked and forced into an evil experiment and… let’s just say he finds a special connection with a large, slimy, tentacled lake monster. It’s not pretty. I can’t say more. Read it.

This comes so close to my (so-far) favorite tent-sex read, Charlotte Mistry’s Gay Tentacles from Outer Space! (discerning tent-sex readers will already know this one). But Kari Gregg (I Omega, Spoils of War) offers up her very own special brand of delicious torture in the tent sex genre.

It’s just all kinds of… no… and, yesssss… Read it, but heed the tags.

Rated: star_review

Flesh and Song by Ally Blue
Tags: contemporary, paranormal, gods/demons, sailing, tropical island

Noah Rose is a restless man. He has everything he could want, a thriving surf holiday business in Costa Rica, a beautiful sailboat, and an eight month vacation cruising around the Caribbean. He’s been searching for a mythic island, “La Terre de la Belle Mort” (Land of the Beautiful Death), but what exactly is he searching for? He has been desired by many men “who wanted to own him but couldn’t” yet he is alone, adrift on the sea, searching, until…

”… here he was, facing the island the old men swore would give you your heart’s most secret desire. For a price.”

A naked man shows up on the island’s pristine beach and Noah is called to him. The lure of the siren song, here with a twist, changes Noah’s life as, once more, someone wants to own and bind him. Has he found his “heart’s most secret desire”?

“Then the stranger spoke again, the words like bells and nightingales… making his heart race… intoxicating song words Noah didn’t understand but already needed the way he needed air and water.”

The story is well made, but in the end it felt like an interesting interlude. Noah is in a dangerous situation, we see it even when he doesn’t, but we don’t know or learn enough about him to really care. Points for the descriptive writing and Noah’s fall into a kind of madness— that was fun.

Rated: 535px-3-5_stars-svg

Out From Under by Brien Michaels
Tags: contemporary, paranormal, demons/monsters, slave/captive, bondage, vine sex, non/dubious-consensual/rape, three-way, stuffing & sounding, torture, gore-fest

Brant has been enslaved and imprisoned in an old, decaying mansion cellar by an evil demon that can take different physical forms. It can even manifest itself by turning the cellar into a lush, verdant forest, sprouting foliage and sex-crazed vines. And it is hungry, it needs a certain type of nourishment. One guess what that is…

“… leaves sprouted beneath my feet, moist and lush… the first string of cum jettisoned from the tip of my cock, and the leaves glowed where it landed.”

The author outdoes himself, this is such a randy gore-fest of demon badness. And Brant is no innocent. He’s a pain-loving nympho, hooked on vine sex, reduced to procuring men for the monster, keeping its secrets; he’s sold himself for it and is lost to the pleasure.

“… the demon’s curse amplified every feeling, made me need that caress so badly I ached.”

And yet, there are lines like, “This nymphomania was really a burden sometimes. It made life so much harder…” and… “(the demon’s) head walked toward me (saying): “Things may not have worked out quite the way I’d planned.” The cheeky humor is welcome and balances the nightmare nicely.

The author switches back and forth in describing the demon’s sexual appendages… are they vines or tentacles? Confusing and irritating. Discriminating tent sex readers will want an important detail like this kept clear and consistent!! *nods* For this reader ‘vine’ works just as well as ‘tentacle’.  I have to add that the demon’s ghastly, human form with its tattoos that could ‘peel away on command’ into 3-D vines— so cool. I also liked the ending, how things resolved for Brant, though there is a lot of gore to wade through to get there. Be warned!

Rated: four-stars_0

Sleeping With Ghosts by Peter Hansen
Tags: paranormal, alternate universe, ghosts, violence

An odd, grim alternative universe, this, and slow-going at first as the reader is dropped coldly into it with little preparation.  Brother Yordan Korvechi is a Bookman, he works for the Church of She Who Turns the Page and their job is to protect against the soulless who roam this world (it seems there are a limited number of souls to go around). “Turning the page” being a euphemism for death, and Yordan wielding the power of the Grim Reaper.

What happens when an aged person needs a little nudge, a little help with separation from life and soul? Who you gonna call?

Yordan is dispatched to such a task, equipped for action… “He had a knife up each sleeve and a slim pistol in his coat lining, a garrote in his breast pocket just aching to be unwound.”  His task is critical, as somewhere, an unborn baby is waiting for the recycled soul, must have it.

But when Yordan discovers that he has been used in a political rivalry, he begins to have second thoughts about his work. Things have become more complicated when he is touched by the soul of the not-so-aged man he has just dispatched, and he is forever changed.

This was well written and atmospheric with a brooding sense of tension, dis-ease and suspicion, but it didn’t feel especially horrific or erotic. It left me almost as cold as poor Yordan’s interaction with the soulless ghost… I couldn’t help but feel that a little more info and character development would have greatly helped. (I recall that I’ve read another short by this author (Changing the Guard) which left me feeling much the same.)

Rated: 535px-3-5_stars-svg

Blasphemer, Sinner, Saint by Heidi Belleau & Sam Schooler
Tags: paranormal, demons, rape, ‘shock-value’

Holy cannoli, this is all kinds of messed up. Disturbing and mesmerizing.

Things start off relatively quietly. There’s David who has to sell himself on the streets to get by, and is dying from syphilis, and Tobias, his self-righteous, sanctimonious ex-lover who runs a boy’s orphanage, steeping himself in ‘good works’.

Told from Tobias’ POV, we see that they were childhood lovers, but Tobias was unable to accept his ‘unnatural’ feelings for David. So he abandons him, and buries himself in religious conviction that it’s for the best. David, meanwhile still loves Tobias, and comes asking him for help.

Part-way in I felt that this was looking to be the most romantic of all the offerings in this antho. Yeah, Tobias is a prick, but he eventually enters into a deal with a strange man he meets in a church, whereby he can give David his life back, give him a chance at redemption. It seems that Tobias still cares for his old lover and does want to help him. But are his intentions completely unselfish and in good faith?

This also has an underlying message of the need for compassion— that sometimes there is no choice— that we must accept who we are, and that love is love. Too bad Tobias learns this too late because the bargain he makes for David’s soul turns out to have a horrific and shocking payment. He has literally sold his soul to the devil for it.

Most of the important action happens in a church and there is an act that is so shocking that it stopped me cold… it will offend some, I suspect. But this is some special mindfuckery— that the horror here, lies in messing with our perceptions and boundaries. There is a twist in the act that makes it work in the end, though. In the end, everyone gets what they deserve. But at what cost?

Rated: four-stars_0

Elizabetta’s Overall Rating – star_review

BUY LINKS: Riptide Publishing

==================================
Elizabetta is one of the official reviewers on The Blog of Sid Love.

To read all her reviews, click the link: ELIZABETTA’S REVIEWS
=====================================================

Reviewed by Heather C

SERIES: Agamemnon Frost Trilogy
AUTHOR: Kim Knox
BOOKS: 3
PUBLISHER: Carina Press

Agamemnon Frost and the House of Death (Book One, Agamemnon Frost Trilogy)

BLURB: Liverpool, 1891

Click image to view full coverDecorated artilleryman Edgar Mason was forced to find new work when the British Empire replaced its foot soldiers with monstrous machines. Now he waits on the Liverpool elite as a personal servant. He has just one rule: he won’t work for fashion-addled dandies.

Agamemnon Frost, however, is far from the foppish man-about-town he appears to be. He’s working to protect the Earth from an alien invasion being planned by a face-changing creature known as Pandarus. And on the night he plans to confront the aliens, he enlists Mason to assist him.

For a man to love a man is a serious crime in Victorian England. But when Mason meets Frost, his heart thunders and his blood catches fire. And when Pandarus drags the two men into the torture cellars beneath his house of death to brainwash them, Mason’s new passion may be all that stands between him and insanity.

REVIEW:

Okay, this was crazy!

The cover is what first drew my interest to this story, but when I originally read the blurb for this, I was immediately turned off by the Victorian England-slash-alien invasion concept.  Then, something kept pulling me back to it over and over, and when I finally realized it would be a trilogy, I decided to give it a try.

It’s Liverpool in 1891, and Edgar Mason, a former soldier, has been hired for the night to play manservant to Agamemnon Frost, a well-dressed gentleman *cough* and guest at Sir Randolph’s dinner party.  Mason soon realizes that ALL things aren’t what they seem and the two men soon find themselves on the run…from Martians!

I’m going to separate my review into parts: first half and second half…

For the first half, the entire first half, I was so lost and confused I almost gave up.  There was a lot of “alien speak” and I couldn’t figure out what the other characters were going on and on about.  Plus, all the Greek references were lost on me.  I couldn’t visualize any of the alien contraptions, nor could I picture what the bad guys were doing to the MC.  It was like all this was written for a higher level of intelligence and my measly, human brain could not comprehend the complexity of it.  Like I said, it was a real struggle for me to continue reading.

Then, for the second half, like right AT the 50% mark, something changed, and all of a sudden, it was making sense and I was really interested in what was going to happen.  The story was still crazy, but by then, it was a fun crazy in a creative and unique way.  I now believe that the beginning was meant to be confusing and hard to follow, since we are getting the story from Mason’s third person POV, and not necessarily a poor execution from the author.

My favorite part of this story was the sexual tension between Mason and Agamemnon.  There’s lots of heat there that I really hope will finally reach a climax in the next book. (Yes, I can’t wait to read it; I must find out what happens).  I am really, really intrigued by Agamemnon and want to know more of his secrets; and I want to know what’s really going on in Mason’s head.

I’m giving this one 3 stars for the fact that it failed to hold my interest for a large part of the story.

Don’t let the historical aspects scare you if that’s not usually your thing, because the feel of the story is more science fiction, alternate universe.

Heather rates it - 3-stars-out-of-5-300x70

BUY LINKS: Carina Press :: Amazon

Agamemnon Frost and the Hollow Ships (Book Two, Agamemnon Frost Trilogy)

Click image to view full coverBLURB: Edgar Mason is ready to embark upon his new life at Agamemnon Frost’s side. But all is not perfect. His Martian overlord, Pandarus, has implanted a dark voice in his mind, a voice that urges betrayal. And though Mason can keep close to Frost, there’s little room for romance under the watchful gaze of the engineers from Station X.

That changes when Mason and Frost reopen their investigation into their old enemy’s whereabouts. Posing as double agents and investigating cryptic rumors of “hollow ships,” they find him impersonating a London banker and worm their way into his confidence.

But their success brings them trouble in spades. Pandarus takes them into the belly of his ships, where he plans to transfigure them into mindless automata. And with Earth on the brink of invasion, Frost’s old flame Theodora reappearing and Pandarus’s brainwashing growing more effective, Mason and Frost will find their bond tested as never before.

REVIEW:

I’ve come to the conclusion that science fiction just might not be the genre for me.

So, Mason is still trying to adapt to his “changes” and is working as Frost’s valet, but now they are stuck at Station X and really can’t explore any of that unresolved sexual tension that’s been building up between them.  Mason is also still struggling with the whispers in his mind that keep telling him that Frost is a traitor and urging him to report that to his master.  Nestor decides that Mason and Frost need to go check out the “hollow ships” and see if they can find Pandarus.  And that’s where things begin to fall apart…

I didn’t think it was possible, but this story was even more difficult for me to follow than the first one.  I couldn’t picture ANYTHING that was happening to the characters or the setting around them.  There were chambers, and spikes and ships made out of human skin…I think.  It was all over the place!  Mason kept thinking he was dying and then he would wake up and I would be even more lost. Then, I think there may have been some kind of time travel to an earth made of living skin…or was it dead skin?  I have no idea because then it was gone…I think.

The sexual tension/romance was much more lacking here than in the first book.  Previously, Frost was all ready to fuck Mason, and then when he finally has a chance, he turns him down!  But not before giving Mason a hand job that I couldn’t even see in my head. And Mason keeps going on and on about how Frost needs to be with his former fiancée, Theodora, even though Frost has told him over and over that he wants Mason and not her.

I struggled reading this from the first page to the last, but I’m still going to read the third book to see how this mess ends.

Heather rates it - 

BUY LINKS: Carina Press :: Amazon :: All Romance eBooks

PRE-RELEASE REVIEW: Agamemnon Frost and the Crown of Towers (Book Three, Agamemnon Frost Trilogy)

Click image to view full coverBLURB: Edgar Mason is losing Agamemnon Frost despite everything they’ve been through–the passion, the torture, the heat. Frost’s fiancée, Theodora, is back, and Mason can feel his lover gravitating toward her. Every day he sees them together, it tears at his heart.

Frost feels raw himself. His brother and sister-in-law are missing, and his guilt about failing to save Theodora from Pandarus eats at him. His feelings for Mason, whom he has put through hell twice already, just twist the screws tighter.

On top of that, Pandarus and the Martians are back to make their final push to Earth, and Frost and Mason are duty bound to fight them. People are vanishing. Bodies are turning up burned beyond recognition in the slums. The bleak, human-less future Frost and Mason saw in the hollow ships has nearly come to pass.

And in order to prevent it, each man will have to make a final choice: lose his lover or doom the world.

REVIEW:

Probably my most favorite book of the series and the most coherent…for the most part.

After rescuing Theodora, Mason and Frost are now protecting her at Frost’s home, Greenbank Hall, and trying to keep the darkness in her mind from taking over. Then, Frost’s brother, Menelaus, and his wife go missing and Frost decides he must take action against Pandarus and discover what the puzzle of The Crown of Towers really is, and choosing between Mason or Theodora’s safety.

For about the first 75% of this book, I was really liking it and was able to follow what was going on.  We get to see more of Frost’s vulnerabilities when it comes to the safety of Theodora; and Mason’s jealousy of Frost’s “engagement” to her.  We also get to see a resolution to all the sexual tension between Mason and Frost…and it’s totally HOT!!

For the last 25% of the book and the big climax where earth is saved from the invading Martians, well, this is where I got confused again and I’m still not sure I understand what really happened. Somehow Mason was the brain of Pandarus’s ship and then Frost’s cravat pin somehow becomes the key to saving the world. Huh?

In the end, Mason and Frost are free from Pandarus and Theodora and can now live happily ever after.

So probably, this kind of science fiction just isn’t for me.

Heather rates it - 3-stars-out-of-5-300x70

BUY LINKS: Carina Press :: Amazon :: All Romance eBooks

==================================
Heather C. is one of the official reviewers on The Blog of Sid Love.

To read all her reviews, click the link: HEATHER’S REVIEWS
==================================

Thanks, Sid, for having me on your blog to talk about After Christmas Eve, released today by MLR Press. Being here, as part of my Release Party, is a pleasure. Thanks so much for all you and your reviewers do to spread the word about new novels in the genre.

My holiday-themed murder mystery/thriller includes a little romance, a sprinkling of gay history, and a dash of humor. Though technically a prequel, you don’t need to have read Until Thanksgiving to enjoy After Christmas Eve. Here’s the tag line:

On Christmas Eve, 1966, Philip Potter drops off gifts to the homeless shelter, an act of generosity that later makes him a suspect in the murder of a male prostitute.

Philip Potter plays a supporting role in my first novel—the uncle of a main character. Fans adored him and shared my interest in learning more about him. I was especially interested in finding out what had motivated his interest in homeless gay teenagers. With not much else in mind, I drafted out three-sentence descriptions of the first thirty chapters.

After Christmas EveWriting a novel is nothing like I’d imagined. For decades, my preconceived notions about the process prevented me from even trying. Finding out I could make stuff up as I went along, rather than having to plan everything out ahead of time, was a revelation.

Going through the publication process was educational too. I love working with editors and know their job is to make my story better. Whether about a character, the plot, wording or whatever, I almost always agree with suggestions for change. The single exception so far involved a demand to write out a year with words rather than numbers. I refused because, in my opinion, words made the passage more difficult to read.

Working with editors has made me a better writer. Fixing the same or similar problems a few times keeps me from repeating the same mistakes again—mostly. Christie and Kris—my editors at MLR Press—have been super. I’m tickled pink with the final version and hope you and your readers will be too.

To celebrate today’s release, I’m giving away 10 copies (ebooks) through my After Christmas Eve Eleven-Stop Blog Hop. Details are available here (http://wp.me/p1Htlv-LB). Each stop on the hop features a different excerpt from the first three chapters, in serial form. If you can’t wait for the next segment, you can buy the book here (http://www.mlrbooks.com/books.php).

Here’s the blurb:

As Philip Potter wraps up his last minute shopping on Christmas Eve, 1966, James Walker, his lover of six years, takes his life. Unaware of what waits for him at home, Philip drops off gifts to the homeless shelter, an act of generosity that later makes him a suspect in the murder of a male prostitute.

Two men drive yellow Continentals. One is a killer, with the blood of at least six hustlers on his hands. Both men have secrets. And as Philip is about to discover, James had kept secrets, too. But James wasn’t trying to frame him for murder…

BUY LINK: MLR Press

Visit my website (http://rupured.com), like my Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/AuthorMichaelRupured), or follow me on Twitter (@crotchetyman).

Reviewed by Elizabetta

6720000TITLE: Entanglements
AUTHOR: Fae Sutherland & Marguerite Labbe
PUBLISHER: Amber Allure
LENGTH: 113 pages
BLURB: Friends. Lovers. Realists. Up-and-coming rocker Ben Copeland and struggling actor John Calder have an unspoken understanding. Mutual pleasure, no strings attached, no demands made, not to mention chemistry so scorching it needs a warning label. For more than a year they’ve sexed their way from one coast to the other, and Ben’s beginning to think he might just have found the key to a perfect “relationship.”

Except now John’s gone and fallen in love. Ben’s career is finally skyrocketing and the last thing he wants or needs is the complication of too many dangerous emotions. John’s not one to take no for an answer, though, and when the “Scottish Don Juan” puts his mind to something, even a man like Ben had better look out…

REVIEW:

This certainly starts off with a bang. In fact, about ninety-percent of this book is about banging, ahem.

Ben and John are aspiring artists, a rock musician and actor, respectively. Both of them talented, gorgeous, desirable, randy dudes who have a hankering for each other. They are long-term fuck buddies, no strings attached– but long enough to have gotten to the point where they really don’t want to play around with others anymore, no one else will do. But they can’t tell each other that. Yet. And this entanglement is the crux of this novella.

Luckily, the sex scenes are hot enough (I’m fondly recalling a couple exhibitionist/voyeur scenes… these guys really don’t care when, where, or how) but the story only works because we also see the simmering yearning under all the steamy hook-ups and bravado posturing against “commitment”.

If these two weren’t connecting on some deeper level, what would be the point?

I like the guys, too… or mostly. Ben is pushy, arrogant, mouthy (“Damn it… you’re slipping… why’re my pants still on?”); the complete front man package. He’s used to being adored and he likes to top from the bottom, is quite verbal about it, and has the motor mouth to prove it. John, working stage actor with the looks to match his sexy Scots burr, is a god in bed; the topper, he knows just what spurs his rocker on (“… your mouth is like a riding crop…” — insert sexy Scots accent here, please).

But, John wants more from Ben, the flighty wild-child. Is he gonna get it?

The authors write two distinct characters and it’s a nice little story, but I find Ben’s reluctance hard to understand, I don’t know him well enough to know where it comes from. It seems like a manufacturing to stir up some plot tension… when, really, the guys’ careers should be enough to contribute to that…  And at the end of the story Ben physically lashes out in anger at an innocent by-stander… this does nothing to win me over to him; it sets me to wonder if it’s only good looks and talent that John needs from his lover.

The ending shapes up to be a HFN for me as I’m not sure how the two will resolve some deep-seeded issues which their nomadic, frenetic careers can only make more difficult. If I only take this as a rocker fairy tale then it all works out well enough.

Elizabetta rates it – 535px-3-5_stars-svg

BUY LINKS: Amber Allure :: Amazon :: All Romance eBooks

==================================
Elizabetta is one of the official reviewers on The Blog of Sid Love.

To read all her reviews, click the link: ELIZABETTA’S REVIEWS
=====================================================