Posts Tagged ‘abuse’

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 Jen B.

Trusting Thomas by K.C. Wells eBookTITLE: Trusting Thomas
SERIES: Collars and Cuffs #2
AUTHOR: K.C. Wells
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
LENGTH: 282 Pages
BLURB: Christmas is a time for goodwill to all, but Collars and Cuffs co-owner Thomas Williams receives an unexpected gift that chills him to the bone. A Dom from another Manchester club asks Thomas for his help rescuing an abused submissive, Peter Nicholson. Thomas takes in the young man as a favor to a friend, offering space and time to heal, but he makes it clear he’s never had a sub and doesn’t want one.

Peter finds Thomas’s home calm and peaceful, but his past has left him unwilling to trust another Dom. When Thomas doesn’t behave as Peter expects, Peter’s nightmares begin to fade, and he decides he’d like to learn more about D/s life. A well-known trainer of submissives, Thomas begins to teach Peter, but as the new submissive opens up to him, Thomas finds he cares more for Peter than he should. Just as he decides it’s time to find a permanent Dom for Peter, they discover Peter’s tormentor is still very much a threat. With their lives in danger, Thomas can’t deny his feelings for Peter any longer. The question now becomes, can Peter make it out of the lions’ den alive, so that Thomas can tell his boy that he loves him?

REVIEW:

This story centers around Peter, a 26 year old who has been in an extremely abusive, slavish at times, BDSM relationship with dom Curtis.  Another dom, Steven, notices and questions Curtis’ treatment of Peter while attending a party and eventually finds a way to remove Peter from the situation.  He turns to his friend Thomas, part owner of Collars & Cuffs, whom we met in book 1.

Thomas is a bit older at 56, but he has a stellar reputation as a trainer of doms and subs and agrees to take on training Peter.  I don’t think Thomas quite realized what he was getting into with Peter or the extent of the damage that was done to him previously.  But he steps up to the plate and finds alternative ways to help Peter work through his issues.  Mostly he provides some structure as Peter gains confidence and becomes more comfortable with BDSM.  Turns out that he had the complete opposite understanding of what it was all about, and Thomas begins his training by showing him how things should be.

Peter is a total sweetheart.  I wanted to peek in his diary myself just to see what he had gone through in one lump, as opposed to the crumbs we are fed.  Curtis was a horrific dom and just not a good person.  Peter slowly gets stronger with the help of Thomas, and it is a joy to watch.

Honestly, I felt like there was actually even less BDSM action in this story than in the first.  I didn’t actually find that a problem though, as it fit perfectly with this story.  Again, this story centers around Peter’s recovery and issues with the actual BDSM taking a back seat.  Thomas must find ways to show Peter the lifestyle that don’t involve pain or humiliation, so he turns to toys and other less-invasive methods, and when some of Peter’s issues prevent him from being comfortable outside of the house, Thomas works around that by not taking him to the Club.

These guys both seemed right for each other.  One of their biggest obstacles after Peter’s issues was the age gap.  Thirty years is a big gap, and the issue comes up more than once.  It never really felt like that much while I was reading, so I never had an issue with it myself.  For now, these guys make a nice couple where they both need each other for different things.  They still have a lot to work through, but they are certainly on the right path.  There is very little sex here, but I didn’t miss it.  I truly just wanted to see Peter get his life back on track and get past his time with Curtis.  Speaking of Curtis, things seemed to wrap up a bit quickly where he was concerned.

It was really nice seeing Leo and Alex again, as happy as they were when we left them in the first book.  We meet a few new characters, and I was left wondering and looking forward to who would be next.

Jen rates it – star_review

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

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

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

Reviewed by Taylor

Intervention by Mia Kerick eBookTITLE: Intervention
AUTHOR: Mia Kerick
PUBLISHER: Harmony Ink
LENGTH: 230 pages
BLURB: As a musician at the popular college café Coed Joe’s, high school senior Kai Manter is never lacking for male attention. Out, proud, free-spirited, and sexually aware, Kai sets his sights on his darkly Gothic and undeniably bad-tempered coworker, Jamie Arlotta, a freshman at the local arts university. Sporting long hair and alluring hippie style, Kai expects his interest will be reciprocated, with satisfying sex as the end goal. That’s what usually happens. But Jamie’s lessons in life have been harsher. Having been sexually abused by his older stepbrother for several years, Jamie has grown an impenetrable outer shell meant to keep the world at a safe distance.

Kai is angry at first when he takes the brunt of Jamie’s bad temper, but after Kai accidentally discovers the abuse Jamie has suffered, he wants to fix things. Kai’s plan is based on what he knows best—music—and he stages a “musical intervention” to let Jamie know he’s not alone and things can get better. When Jamie’s perspective changes and he emerges from his shell, Kai changes, too, gaining a whole new understanding of what sex can be when love is there too.

REVIEW:

Kai Manter is a young, talented musician that’s proudly out, very sexually active, and finds himself uncharacteristically attracted to a shy, aloof waiter at the café where he performs.  That shy waiter, who is prone at times to demonstrate a wicked temper, is Jamie Arlotta, a freshman at the local arts university.  There are very serious reasons for Jamie’s temperament and it won’t be easy to break down Jamie’s walls and allow Kai in, but with the help of his friends and his own determination, Kai sets out to prove to Jaime that he’s serious about him and their love.

Sigh, so I don’t really know how to review or rate this, partially because I think many people will like this much more than I did, and that I may just be a bit burnt out on YA or too distanced from teenagers these days.  I can’t even honestly say if teenagers actually think, act and speak like this, but it felt not quite there.  And that just might be because it didn’t speak to ME or it actually could be the author’s style.

I will say that the writing style almost had a frenetic pace, that didn’t fit the plot points well in my opinion.  I kept imagining the guy who did the Micro Machine commercials, John Moschitta Jr., speaking to me throughout my reading.  This is a story of serious topics, from incest, abuse, even stalking, and yet the WAY it was all handled left me with a distaste in my mouth.  And I don’t feel like I can articulate why.   Part of me thinks it wasn’t given the soberness these issues deserved and the levity with which it was handled at times upset me.  That’s not to say that the characters didn’t discuss things with their friends, with adults and with each other.  That’s not to say that the characters didn’t reflect on the issues or think these things weren’t as bad as they were, but something in the overall tone felt off.  Just way off.  I wanted it to slow down.  Let the moments breathe, let the reader AND Jaime process.  Too many events, too many detailed days, too much dialogue and I never felt I could appreciate each serious moment on its own.

I liked that Kai tried to relate to Jaime through music, and even more importantly with specific playlists.  I related to that because I enjoy book playlists, or think of songs that trigger memories for me.  Those parts were great, but the rest of this book didn’t work for me.  I couldn’t relate or really even like any of the characters unfortunately.  It was all a bit oddly frivolous and sappy, which is just not me.

BUT, again, this might all just be me.  I do think many of my friends that generally like young adult and super sweet books will like this, but anyone that is even slightly against melodrama, young adult books, or lots of sentences with (other parts of sentence in parentheses); you might want to pass.

Taylor rates it –

BUY LINKS: Dreamspinner Press :: All Romance eBooks

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

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

Reviewed by Taylor

17259690TITLE: The Foxhole Court
SERIES: All for the Game, Book 1
AUTHOR: Nora Sakavic
PUBLISHER: Self-published with Smashwords
LENGTH: 140 pages
BLURB: Neil Josten is the newest addition to the Palmetto State University Exy team. He’s short, he’s fast, he’s got a ton of potential—and he’s the runaway son of the murderous crime lord known as The Butcher.

Signing a contract with the PSU Foxes is the last thing a guy like Neil should do. The team is high profile and he doesn’t need sports crews broadcasting pictures of his face around the nation. His lies will hold up only so long under this kind of scrutiny and the truth will get him killed.

But Neil’s not the only one with secrets on the team. One of Neil’s new teammates is a friend from his old life, and Neil can’t walk away from him a second time. Neil has survived the last eight years by running. Maybe he’s finally found someone and something worth fighting for.

REVIEW:

It will be hard to discuss this book without spoilers, and it’s difficult to think of this book as a separate piece on its own.  I have not read the sequel to The Foxhole Court, yet; I get the sense the series is one long overarching story and the first book is the set-up, with hopefully the second book being the development, and the final book will resolve the conflicts.  That’s not to say the author didn’t have large events happen in this book, but it felt incomplete, leaving me confused.

What I liked about this book is the mystery, the characters, and the absolute craziness throughout the book.  You have to throw out any ideas of plausibility with this kind of book and just go with it.   The book has little psychopathic monsters running around with hidden knives, killers operating in the sporting field, a made-up sport, etc.  You also have to go into this without any expectations of a romance in this book, and we most certainly will not have a typical m/m romance in the future for this series.

The Foxhole Court focuses on a fictional sport called Exy, which seems like a mix of lacrosse, hockey, and a few other things.  It’s violent, extremely popular and the driving force for happiness for Neil – our protagonist- and Kevin, the former national star of Exy.  Neil is on the run from his father, an abusive man in the mob, and also from other mob bosses that control numerous aspects in Exy.  They control the teams, the arenas, the media and the workings within the game as much as they can.

So there’s all that, which should have been what I concentrated on, but I’ll admit for much of this book I didn’t know what was going on, what the point was, and where it all was heading.  I’ll also admit it took me a while to warm to Neil, and I think the author could have presented his backstory (and personality) in a quicker manner.  It felt dragged out in parts, and I kept wishing he’d get more interaction with characters, rather than so much introspection.

Even though I’m not big into written sports, I realized that each scene of practice really did show aspects of the characters’ personalities, where the clique lines divided, and hinted at motives characters might have towards playing well or not. I think once they really start playing in the following books, the action will become exciting and definitely tenser.

My favorite aspect of this book hands down, though, is Andrew.  I have SO many questions and ideas about Andrew.  The way his medications worked and his reaction to the medications really didn’t jive with me well, but I think the author is hinting at something deeper not yet revealed.  Why is he so protective of Kevin and not really of his twin?  Is he really a sociopath?  Also, I think it’s interesting how the author described him with Exy.  How he’s talented, but he as this air about him that he doesn’t care, maybe even resents what the sport represents.  But I think most of all when he’s out there, he feels alive in some hidden way.  He knows Kevin needs him to care and play well, he knows Coach has so much ridding on the outcome of these games and the future of the Foxes; he equally knows the team wants to win.  So it’s a game to him inside of the game he’s playing.  It’s about power.  He’s short and looks initially demure, he’s used to only feeling numb or anger, but having control over whether or not he gives a crap about Exy – THAT gives him power over everyone.  So, yeah, Andrew is badass.

Looking forward to the next one and hopefully some answers to all these questions.

Taylor rates it: 535px-3-5_stars-svg

BUY LINKS: Smashwords :: Amazon

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

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

OmorphiHigh school senior Michael Sattler leads a charmed life. He’s a star athlete, has great friends, and parents who love him just the way he is. What’s missing from his life is a boyfriend. That’s a problem because he’s out only to his parents and best friend. When Michael accidentally bumps into Christy Castle at school, his life changes in ways he never imagined. Christy is Michael’s dream guy: smart, pretty, and sexy. But nothing could have prepared Michael for what being Christy’s boyfriend would entail.

Christy needs to heal after years of abuse and knows he needs help to do it. After the death of his notorious father, he leaves his native Greece and settles in upstate New York. Alone, afraid, and left without a voice, Christy hides the myriad scars of his abuse. He desperately wants to be loved and when he meets Michael, he dares to hope that day has arrived. When one of Michael’s team-mates becomes an enemy and an abuser from Christy’s past seeks to return him to a life of slavery, only Michael and Christy’s combined strength and unwavering determination can save them from the violence that threatens to destroy their future together.

Purchase Omorphi from   Harmony Ink Press    Amazon    Barnes & Noble   ARe/OmniLit

Why the Title Omorphi?

I am one of those people who was fortunate enough to have traveled often and from a young age. Many people don’t have this opportunity and that’s why I try to bring a little bit of the outside world and other cultures to my readers through my books. One of the main characters in my stories will almost always be from a country other than the United States. In the case of Safe, Nico is Italian. In the case of Slaying Isidore’s Dragons, Isidore is French and Declan is Irish. In the case of Omorphi, Christy is Greek and we have a chance to glimpse a bit of Greek culture through some of Christy’s comments and cultural ways in Omorphi.

The working title of the novel was “Pretty” because Christy is, well, pretty. Also, Christy has been severely abused and has a very low opinion of himself. He believes, in spite of his good looks, he is ugly because of what heartless others have done to him. So, Christy likes to wear pretty things like lace and silk and, for him, it isn’t only cross-dressing, but a way to feel free of the ugliness he believes he is. Because Christy is Greek, I chose to change the title of the book to Omorphi, which means pretty in Greek. There you have it. That’s the story behind the title Omorphi!

About Cody

Raised on the mean streets and back lots of Hollywood by a Yoda-look-alike grandfather, Cody Kennedy doesn’t conform, doesn’t fit in, is epic awkward and lives to perfect a deep-seated oppositional defiance disorder. In a constant state of fascination with the trivial, Cody contemplates such weighty questions as: If time and space are curved, then where do all the straight people come from? When not writing, Cody can be found taming waves on western shores, pondering the nutritional value of sunsets, appreciating the much maligned dandelion, unhooking guide ropes from stanchions, and marveling at all things ordinary.

Find Cody    Facebook    Goodreads    Twitter @CodyKAuthor

~*~

Follow Omorphi’s blog tour for three chances to win an ebook copy of Omorphi!

Omorphi_headerbanner

September 9th – Pre-kickoff post – Cody is a Featured Author on True Colorz and answers questions about penning Omoprhi Review by True Colorz

September 15th – The Novel Approach – Pre-release Q&A with Cody and a chance to win an ebook copy of Omorphi Review by The Novel Approach

September 18th – Author Will Parkinson – Will holds nervous Cody’s hand the day before Omorphi’s release because he promised to and Cody talks about Omorphi’s Cover and Bringing Omorphi to Life

September 19th – Mrs. Condit & Friends Read Books – Cody writes Perils and Pitfalls of Post Production Public Relations and a SECOND chance to win an ebook copy of Omorphi! Review by Mrs. Condit & Friends

September 19th – Smile, Somebody Loves You – Announcement post and Cody shares Omorphi Trivia with Beverly and Tamara

September 20th – Author Shira Anthony – Why I write the kind of stories that I do by Cody

September 21st – Author Jamie Mayfield – Why Omorphi and A Broken Kind of Life are Same but Different

Also on September 21st – Harmony Ink Press on Facebook: Meet Cody Kennedy and Jamie Mayfield

September 22nd – Cody’s Blog – Tony Edmondson, Fan Extraordinaire, interviews Cody

September 27th – Author Wade Kelly – Character Interview with Christy Castle

September 28th – Author Iyana Jenna, Fairy Fan Extraordinaire, Q&A with Christy Castle

September 29th – Author Zoe Lynne – The Notes Behind Omorphi’s Play List

October 4th – Sid Love’s Blog – Why the title Omorphi? Review by Sid Love

October 5th – Author Madison Parker – What makes Omorphi unique?

October 6th – Author John Ames – Q&A with Michael Sattler

October 11th – Boys on the Brink – Omorphi: Writing Sex and Violence in Young Adult works

October 12th – Author Jamie Fessenden – Cody shares Omorphi Trivia with Jamie

October 15th – Granny Irene – A week in the Life of Christy Castle before Michael

October 18th – Author Sara Alva – A week in the life of Michael Sattler before Christy

October 19th – Author Sam Kadence – Cody Talks About Writing Action and the Suspension of Disbelief

October 20th – Cody’s Blog – Omorphi’s One Month Anniversary Trivia Contest and a THIRD chance to win an ebook copy of Omorphi – In order to enter this contest you must:

1) have visited and commented on each stop on Omorphi’s Blog Tour – please be sure to leave your name and email address in your blog comment. “Anonymous” comments won’t qualify; and

2) you must correctly answer the trivia questions posted on Cody’s Blog by placing your answers in the comments section beneath the questions; and

3) along with your answers to the trivia questions, you must leave a comment about Omorphi’s Blog Tour.

The winner will be selected by Kismet, Cody’s greenwing macaw.

To make things even more exciting, a new contest will begin on October 21st on The Novel Approach Reviews Blog to win an ebook copy of Cody’s novella, Safe, due out October 24th from Harmony Ink Press!

Get ready to read and win!

made-of-stars

One of my favorite things to do is find dream casts for my book characters. I enjoy having someone to visualize as I write, and I find it often helps in the writing process. You picture someone’s voice and their movements, and it’s fun to translate that onto paper.

Granted, I don’t always have someone in mind when I’m writing. In the case of Made of Stars, the only character I knew right away was Chance, and the others didn’t come until much later on. Probably during edits.

cast1

Hunter: Louis Hunter. Ha! The last name fits, right? This is one of the choices I’m not 100% confident about, simply because I haven’t watched any of Louis’ work to see if he embodies Hunter. But he’s got the boyish good looks, the sweet smile, and the lovely eyes. Looks-wise, he’s great.

Ashlin: Candice Accola. Although I’m not a big Vampire Diaries fan, I have watched the first two seasons and I loved Candice. She does well at being sweet when she wants to be, and has the perfect, almost mischievous smile I picture Ashlin having.

Rachael: Shay Mitchell, best known for her role in Pretty Little Liars. (A show I haven’t watched.) Although I wouldn’t consider Rachael a “main” character in Made of Stars, I still had this girl in mind and thought she deserved some recognition.

Chance: Hayden Christiansen. Let’s be real; Hayden is waaaay too old for the part now (although he’s still adorable as hell), but his role on Life as a House was so Chance. Maybe not in demeanor, necessarily, but his way of walking, talking, and even many of his expressions, were so spot on that I had him in mind from day one while writing Chance.

cast2

If you’ve already read Made of Stars or even Hushed, do you have a dream cast in mind? What about for some of your other favorite books?

Made of StarsBlurb:

When eighteen-year-old Hunter Jackson and his half sister, Ashlin, return to their dad’s for the first winter in years, they expect everything to be just like the warmer months they’d spent there as kids. And it is—at first. But Chance, the charismatic and adventurous boy who made their summers epic, is harboring deep secrets. Secrets that are quickly spiraling into something else entirely.

The reason they’ve never met Chance’s parents or seen his home is becoming clearer. And what the siblings used to think of as Chance’s quirks—the outrageous stories, his clinginess, his dangerous impulsiveness—are now warning signs that something is seriously off.

Then Chance’s mom turns up with a bullet to the head, and all eyes shift to Chance and his dad. Hunter and Ashlin know Chance is innocent…they just have to prove it. But how can they protect the boy they both love when they can’t trust a word Chance says?

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | The Book Depository | Goodreads

About Kelley

KelleyOnce upon a time, Kelley York was born in central California. And it’s there she she still resides with her lovely wife, step-daughter, and an abundance of cats, while fantasizing about moving to England or Ireland. She has a fascination with bells and animals, is a lover of video games, Doctor Who, manga and anime, and likes to pretend she’s a decent photographer. Her life goal is to find a real unicorn. Or at least write about them.

Kelley is a sucker for dark fiction. She loves writing twisted characters, tragic happenings, and bittersweet endings that leave you wondering and crying. Character development takes center stage in her books because the bounds of a person’s character and the workings of their mind are limitless.

Her first book, HUSHED, was released by Entangled Publishing in December 2011. Her second and third books, HOLLOWED and SUICIDE WATCH, were released in 2012, and her next Entangled book, MADE OF STARS, is slated for October 1st, 2013. She is currently seeking representation.

Website/Twitter/Facebook/Goodreads 

Giveaway

1 signed copy of Made of Stars and some bookmarks (US Only)

1 eBook Package of Hushed, Suicide Watch, and Hollowed International

Rafflecopter Link

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/share-code/ZTIzODliYTI4ZTEzMGVjODBhNzA2MmFmMTU3YWM3OjEwNA==/

Reviewed by Jen B.

18376643TITLE: Fear
AUTHOR: Edward Kendrick
PUBLISHER: Silver Publishing
LENGTH: 189 Pages
BLURB: Shawn Mathews is in an abusive relationship, spurning all attempts to help him until his lover almost beats him to death.

Doctor Gene Collins understands what Shawn has gone through, and after the beating he takes him under his wing, trying to help him to regain control of his life and live without fear.

In the process each man learns it is possible to care for someone and that caring can lead to healing, for both of them.

REVIEW:

This was a really sweet story.  Poor Shawn was so disillusioned by Jared and what he believed was a normal loving relationship.  Jared, of course, was an abusive bastard, both physically and mentally, and while quite a lot of abuse takes place, there are not a lot of details given in that respect.  Eventually, Jared goes too far and puts Shawn in the hospital.

Gene Collins, a man with a similar past abusive relationship, sees signs of the same thing happening to Shawn when they meet somewhat by chance.  When Shawn is hospitalized, Gene, who is also a doctor, recognizes their common bond and is determined to be there for him to help him recover and move on.  It takes Shawn a while initially to see his way out of his relationship with Jared.  Lucky for him, he finds friends who care and want to help him take back his life.

Gene doesn’t want to be a rebound lover or for Shawn to become dependent upon him after Jared, so he keeps things on an extremely friends only level.  So, these guys take a long time getting to know each other.  They don’t kiss until later in the story, and there is no sex until the very end.  Unfortunately, I had a difficult time feeling a connection with them.  Gene seemed much older than his age, and while they were sweet together, I never really saw any spark.

There really isn’t a whole lot more to this story other than Shawn healing and becoming stronger mentally and physically.  There are a few setbacks, but he grows stronger with each one.  Hurt/comfort lovers will probably really enjoy this, as well as those who enjoy watching couples take things slow.

Jen rates it – 535px-3-5_stars-svg

BUY LINKS: Silver Publishing :: Amazon

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

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

Reviewed by Taylor

five-stars120205

TITLE: Made of Stars
AUTHOR: Kelley York
PUBLISHER: Entangled Publishing
LENGTH: 320 pages
BLURB:
When eighteen-year-old Hunter Jackson and his half-sister, Ashlin, return to their dad’s for the first winter in years, they expect everything to be just like the warmer months they’d spent there as kids. And it is—at first. But Chance, the charismatic and adventurous boy who made their summers epic, is harboring deep secrets. Secrets that are quickly spiraling into something else entirely.

The reason they’ve never met Chance’s parents or seen his home is becoming clearer. And what the siblings used to think of as Chance’s quirks—the outrageous stories, his clinginess, his dangerous impulsiveness—are now warning signs that something is seriously off.

Then Chance’s mom turns up with a bullet to the head, and all eyes shift to Chance and his dad. Hunter and Ashlin know Chance is innocent…they just have to prove it. But how can they protect the boy they both love when they can’t trust a word Chance says?

REVIEW:

I don’t think I can put into proper words my feelings about Kelley York’s writing. Thus far, she’s always written LGBT young adult fiction with broken boys.  But really, that’s putting her prose far too simply.  She always writes with an authentic voice that somehow manages to come across childlike, but adult.  A voice that manages to sound innocent, but jaded.  A story that shows humans can easily be both good and bad.  She writes stories that make me think, make my heart break in tiny pieces, and make me look at things surrounding me in new ways.  She inspires me simply put.

Made of Stars is a complex story of three teenagers on the precipice of discovering who they are, what they want in life, what they are willing to sacrifice and give up, and what they are willing to fight for at all cost.  Hunter Jackson and his half-sister Ashlin meet the boy they will grow to love, as they mature, by the water one summer.  Chance, the boy the author describes perfectly as “strangeness and whimsy in human form.”  I don’t think I can tell other readers how large my love for Chance was throughout this book.  He’s both truth and lies, strength and vulnerability; he’s a boy who loves animals and sad movies, that never stops dreaming because it’s the only thing keeping him going, other than a love deep in his heart for boy he considers his haven.  And for Hunter and Ashlin, Chance was their summer.  He’s adventure, spontaneity, and sunshine.  He’s an escape from their normal lives, and something they look forward to during those cold months away from their summers visiting their dad.

The real start of this novel begins in November.  Ashlin and Hunter have graduated from high school and have decided to take a year off before deciding whether or not to attend college.  Ashlin lives in California normally with her mom, and Hunter lives in Maine with his mom and her boyfriend, Bob, about four hours away from their dad, in Otter’s Rest, Maine.  When Ashlin and Hunter arrive for their first winter, they don’t immediately see Chance, and it’s nerve-wracking because they haven’t been home to see their dad (or Chance) in two years due to an injury their father suffered.  However, as soon as they see Chance everything goes right back as if they were all kids again.  Except things aren’t quite what they seem.  Ashlin still holds out for Chance’s attention, but he only has eyes and room in his heart, in that way, for Hunter.  When Hunter’s girlfriend comes for a visit in Christmas, all of the relationships change.  Things that have been buried come to the surface and teenagers have to face some harsh truths about themselves, the people they love, and what makes up the idea of a family.  Feelings of guilt, shame, envy, awakening, and joy take over their young bodies throughout these months.

This book is slow at times, but it’s an enjoyable pace.  The writing is quite sparse, yet it says so very much.  It’s poetic, but at the same time, I can clearly see a real person speaking these words, having these internal monologues within themselves.  There is that joy of snow, the adventure of an island, tall tales and scary truths, and the sense of family and what you make of it.

Kelley York shines, as always, in her character studies.  Whenever I finish one of her books, I feel as if a part of me was torn away when I put the book down, as if leaving her characters rips them from my life.  I worry about them, I love them, and I just want the best for them.  To me, that’s what books are about and what brings me joy.  What I most appreciate, though, is she will make you work to love each one of them or emote understanding for individuals you’d otherwise never would.

Ashlin is such a wonderful, selfless, brave young woman.  A caring daughter, a giving sister, a devoted friend.  She, also, recognizes emotions and feelings of other characters in such simple, understanding ways.  I loved when she understood why she wanted Chance, and it correlated so perfectly of what she thought Hunter and Rachel’s relationship held, and even more when she saw the truth between Hunter and Chance.  Hunter is that all-American boy whose story should be so simple, if this was just any fairy-tale story.  And Chance…Chance is best left for the reader to discover on their own, but I heart him so very, very much.

BUY LINKS: Amazon Link :: All Romance eBooks

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

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

Reviewed by Elizabetta

Serve MeTITLE: Serve Me (Anthology)
AUTHORS: Anna Hedley, Gabriel Belthir, Lor Rose, Fox Lee
PUBLISHER: Storm Moon Press
LENGTH: 129 pages
BLURB: For some people there’s nothing more appealing than the idea of a man forced to serve against his will, as a second-class citizen: a slave. Despite the dark history surrounding forced servitude and slavery, there remains a growing desire for depictions of fetishized slavery fantasies. Like rape fantasy, the appeal for readers in slave fiction lies not in a desire for the actual act, but in the ability to explore such things in a safe space. Many people harbor a secret wish to be forced into certain acts that they know they want, but have been socially conditioned to abhor. Such is the core of the Serve Me anthology. Be warned: these are not stories of consensual, negotiated power exchange. The stories in this anthology focus on true sexualized, erotic slavery: stories of men forced, coerced, or otherwise bound into a second-class life servicing another in whatever ways their master sees fit.

Idris is part of The Spoils of war: the last surviving member of a barbarian clan, he is famed in the gladiatorial arena for his bloody ruthlessness and outside the arena for his carnal appetites. His inner beast is calmed by the presence of his slave and lover, Theo, but to be true to his heart, Idris may have to risk breaking it. Samuel has spent years striving toward the Viscount’s circles, where rich and fantastical parties are given and elaborate slave auctions held. He thinks he wants a young lover, but when he buys an Adonis known as Apollo, he realizes what he was truly missing. Now Apollo gives the orders, and it is Samuel saying, As You Wish. Life is Unforgiving for Aidan and Aaron, criminals who have been doomed to live as slaves to vampire masters, whose appetites can be agony… or bliss. When Aidan is given a new lease on life with a benevolent Master, his relief is tainted by pain at leaving Aaron behind; pain which only his Master Ryce has the power to end. Yuta is a gentle giant who joins a local gang for the sense of family that they can provide, but when they leave him high and dry in the middle of a failed heist, it’s his captor, Takashima, who shows him what family can really mean as the vicious gang enforcer tenderly turns him into Takashima’s Pet.

REVIEW:

Forced servitude is the common theme in this anthology about slave fantasies. If non-con, multiple partners, slave pets, bondage, and humiliation are triggers, stay away. If not, you may find something here to titillate.

Overall rating = 3.0 stars

The Spoils by Anna Hedley

Idris’ berserker skills make him a formidable combatant in the arena where he fights for the entertainment and gain of his Master. Problem is, Idris can’t control when he “whites out” and goes crazy on his opponents’ asses, and he remains invincible. That is, until he meets the snarky demon Kage, who kicks his butt; until he starts hallucinating the ghosts of all those he’s killed in the arena.

Idris is going through the motions, he’s had enough of the carnage and chewing on his opponent’s guts. Theo, a maenad (confusing, as they are supposed to be feminine; or maybe this is a playful poke at girly guys?) pleasure slave with magic healing skills, is given to Idris. He and Theo take a pretty quick cottoning to each other… or maybe Idris just appreciates healing massages…  and Theo just wants his freedom. Anyway, I’m not really feeling it.

Kage, however, is fun. He’s a sexy, wise-cracking ninja master with a wicked toothed whip, and he knows how to take control. We don’t get nearly enough of this demon match-maker.

The debauchery à la ancient Rome, is chock-a-block with lusty pleasure slave rapey-ness, multiple partners, oily wrestling, public sex and humiliation, and even a double penetration. So, lots of fluid swapping excess swamps the action.

Rated: 3-stars-out-of-5-300x70

As You Wish by Gabriel Belthir

Set in a pseudo Victorian-era England, a young working stiff gets his fondest wish when he is invited to hobnob with the ton. It’s never clear just what Samuel’s allure is to Viscount Edmund Kaylock, why he’s been invited to his private slave auction at the mansion– I was eager for more information about that.

Samuel can’t believe his good fortune as he surveys the tall and massive, ebony skinned, Apollo, up for bid. This slave spells danger, is rumored to have murdered, but that doesn’t stop Samuel from taking him home.

There is some initial awkward racial “Mandingo” stereotyping that had me worried. But a nice role twist develops and Apollo eventually shows insight and ingenuity. I found this mostly pedestrian though, and there’s not a lot of world-building. But, there is a hot role-play scene and the relationship works sweetly in the end.

Rated: 3-stars-out-of-5-300x70

Life is Unforgiving by Lor Rose

In this paranormal vamp story the slaves are called ‘blood bags’. Vamps, or Daeva, are out in the world but feared by all. And they are allowed to take slaves.

Aidan is discarded by his old Master; he’s sold to Ryce who is quite gentle and indulgent with him. So things start looking up for the horribly abused Aidan. There is a very hot menage scene– Aidan is the middle in a vamp sandwich with Ryce and vamp friend, Levant. They work very well together, in concert and synchronized… oh hell, the whole thing is sexy. Let’s just say that Aidan’s luck has changed when he discovers vamp sex. He may even find vamp love. This is my favorite of the anthology, I like Ryce’s treatment of Aidan throughout and his promising him a happy ever after is sweetly romantic.

Rated: 535px-3-5_stars-svg

Takashima’s Pet by Fox Lee

Yuta has the misfortune of getting caught when his gang attempts to rob Takashima’s warehouse; they take off running, leaving him behind. Fortunately, the well-known yakuza likes the look of Yuta and gives him the choice of death or becoming his sex slave.

The first day Takashima keeps Yuta he leaves him alone bound, ball-gagged and catheterized, on his bed. For the whole day. Alone. No food, no water. This was completely unappealing. It doesn’t matter what Takeshima thinks of Yuta, it’s just plain dangerous behavior. The blurb says that Takashima tenderly teaches Yuta the meaning of family. It’s all relative I suppose, as Yuta hasn’t known much tender love in his life. He quickly adapts to being Takashima’s pet, and says he’s in love and in it for the long haul. Not surprising since he doesn’t have anywhere else to go. I didn’t find this particularly romantic or erotic, I couldn’t get past the initial abuse.

Rated:

OVERALL RATING: 3-stars-out-of-5-300x70

BUY LINK: Storm Moon Press  ::  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
=====================================================

Reviewed by Elizabetta

OmorphiTITLE: Omorphi
AUTHOR: Cody Kennedy
LENGTH: 189,675 words
PUBLISHER: Harmony Ink Press
BLURB: High school senior Michael Sattler leads a charmed life. He’s a star athlete, has great friends, and parents who love him just the way he is. What’s missing from his life is a boyfriend. That’s a problem because he’s out only to his parents and best friend. When Michael accidentally bumps into Christy Castle at school, his life changes in ways he never imagined. Christy is Michael’s dream guy: smart, pretty, and sexy. But nothing could have prepared Michael for what being Christy’s boyfriend would entail.

Christy needs to heal after years of abuse and knows he needs help to do it. After the death of his notorious father, he leaves his native Greece and settles in upstate New York. Alone, afraid, and left without a voice, Christy hides the myriad scars of his abuse. He desperately wants to be loved and when he meets Michael, he dares to hope that day has arrived. When one of Michael’s team-mates becomes an enemy and an abuser from Christy’s past seeks to return him to a life of slavery, only Michael and Christy’s combined strength and unwavering determination can save them from the violence that threatens to destroy their future together.

REVIEW:

That cover… Omorphi, or ‘pretty’ in Greek, is the perfect description of Christy Castle, a mysterious and mute new student at Michael Sattler’s high school. Picture the famous androgynous fashion model Andrej Pejić, who Michael has had a secret crush on, and you’re there. Long golden blond hair, aquamarine eyes, delicate and whippet thin, Christy fits the bill perfectly. Michael, senior sports stud and all-round good guy, has been longing for a pretty boyfriend, an ómorfi agóri, and just like Christy, he’s ready for love. Once they connect it should be sweet romance from there on. 

Michael has a golden life. He is captain of the track team, has great friends, is an excellent student, has a scholarship to Oxford; he is a golden boy. His parents love and support him even after he came out to them, and his best friend Jake has always had his back, they’re like brothers, have known each other all their lives. 

Christy is the exact opposite of Michael, he has no loving parents, has fled his home country, Greece, escaping years of horrific abuse which have left him physically scarred and mentally traumatized. He’s the new kid at school and his pretty looks now make him a target for vicious attacks by homophobic school bullies. Michael champions this lost boy and becomes something of a mentor and guide. As they get to know each other it becomes clear that a simple high school fling is not what this is about. 

I like pieces of this story: I like the idea of Christy finding his voice and his inner strength; I like his forging a friendship with the brilliant Michael; I like how their physical relationship is handled given Christy’s sexual abuse, how Michael teaches Christy about love and respect. I like the author’s heartfelt mission to inform about treatment of children who have been physically and mentally abused. We are walked every step of the way through Christy’s treatment for his abuse. It is obvious the author is informed in the subject or has done their research. 

We are witness to every twist and turn in Christy and Michael’s journey. Their story enters the realm of the fairytale…  By the end, Christy and Michael have rallied the queer students in their high school to thwart the bullies, have survived at least three attempts on their lives, and outwitted the police forces of two countries in hunting the very, very evil bad guys intent on harming Christy. Michael is told by various professionals several times that he should be a doctor/psychologist/lawyer… he can do no wrong. Christy is very lucky indeed to have him as his protector and avenger. 

My main issue with Omorphi is that it gets bigger than life and blown into soap opera proportions. And there is a lot going on, it is way too long, would have been better at half the length. Yet, you can’t mistake the careful, loving work that has gone into it. I know that many will love this hard-edged yet sweet love story about overcoming great odds. I recommend this for those readers. Be warned, though, that there are descriptions of horrific abuse and rape. My rating is for the premise and the love story even if I couldn’t completely get behind the packaging.

Elizabetta’s Rating: four-stars_0

BUY LINK: Harmony Ink Press  ::  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
=====================================================