Posts Tagged ‘blog tour’

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HUG IT OUT!

By Shae Connor

One of the Atlanta Braves’ newer stars is first baseman Freddie Freeman, a tall, red-haired, corn-fed boy from central California. All of 23 years old, Freddie’s nonetheless become a clubhouse leader and a fan favorite, not just for his stellar play on the field but also for one big reason: Freddie LOVES to give hugs.

freddiehugs

In particular, Freddie loves to hug his BFF, Dan Uggla.

freddiedanhugs

Freddie and Dan hug so often, and so well, that it’s become an advertising gimmick (link: http://wapc.mlb.com/atl/play/?content_id=27085283&c_id=atl), a meme (link: http://freddiefreemanhuggingpeople.tumblr.com/), and even a fandom, complete with their own portmanteau: Fruggla.

fruggla

Their bromance gets even cuter when you realize that Freddie is 6 inches taller, and Dan is 10 years older. Seriously, how many gay romance stories have you read with setups like that?

It’s close friendships between teammates like these that lend themselves to fiction, and baseball is full of them. No, the characters in Home Field Advantage aren’t based on Freeman and Uggla (though Caleb does have some similarities to Freddie), but that doesn’t mean they won’t end up in the pages in some form somewhere. If not mine, then someone else’s.

I’d love to hear from other fans about your favorite pro sports friendships. Not just in baseball, either! A friend of mine is a big fan of two hockey players who are BFFs. What sports friendships do you follow, and what makes them so great?

While you’re thinking that over, take a minute to enter our giveaway! We’re offering two prizes. The grand prize is a print copy of Playing Ball signed by all four authors, a unisex BBQ apron featuring hot athletes from Originals by Lauren (https://www.etsy.com/shop/OriginalsbyLauren), and swag from all four authors. The runner-up will get an ebook copy of Playing Ball and swag from all four authors.

The giveaway will run from 12 AM Central on September 21, 2013, to 12 AM Central on October 11, 2013. To give an opportunity for the authors to get together to sign the book and gather swag, the winners will be picked and the prizes shipped after the end of GayRomLit 2013.

Rules: You must be a resident of Earth, 18 years or older, who lives in a place where the viewing of adult material is legal. By entering the giveaway, you are indicating your agreement to the rules. Winners must provide a physical mailing address to receive their prizes. If a winner does not respond to the prize notification within 48 hours, the prize will be re-awarded.

  Click here to enter!

Playing Ball

Playing BallShae Connor, Kate McMurray, Kerry Freeman, and Marguerite Labbe

Cover by Aaron Anderson

Published by Dreamspinner Press

270 pages

Blurb

Baseball—America’s favorite pastime—provides a field wide open for romance. A Home Field Advantage may not help when Toby must choose between the team he’s loved all his life and the man he could love for the rest of it. In 1927, Skip hides his sexuality to protect his career until he meets One Man to Remember. Ruben and Alan fell victim to a Wild Pitch, leaving them struggling with heartache and guilt, and now they’ve met again. And on One Last Road Trip, Jake retires and leaves baseball behind, hoping to reconnect with Mikko and get a second chance at love.

The anthology contains the following novellas:

Home Field Advantage by Shae Connor

Toby MacMillan, grandson of Atlanta Braves owner Ray MacMillan, lives for baseball and loves his team. When he meets new team member Caleb Browning, an innocent welcome-to-the-big-leagues dinner leads to a not-so-innocent night together. Toby quickly calls things off, afraid of the ramifications of their tryst, but the two men develop a friendship that soon becomes more. After Caleb takes a fastball to the head, their budding romance hits the news—and Toby’s grandfather hits the roof. When Ray MacMillan demands Toby deny the relationship, Toby must choose between the team he’s loved all his life and the man he could love for the rest of it.

One Man to Remember by Kate McMurray

It’s 1927, and in New York City, Babe Ruth and the Yankees’ unstoppable batting lineup, Murderers’ Row, is all anyone can talk about. Across town, the Giants’ rookie infielder Skip Littlefield racks up hits, creating a streak to rival the Babe’s. Worried his secrets could get out, he avoids the spotlight, but he catches the attention of lauded sports reporter Walter Selby, a notorious dandy whose sexuality is an open secret. Skip reluctantly agrees to an interview, and mutual attraction is sparked. Skip can only hope the more charismatic stars will draw attention away from his romance with Walt. Otherwise, his career and everything he loves is at stake.

Wild Pitch by Marguerite Labbe

Ruben Martell fell in love with Alan Hartner during their years playing baseball. They stepped over the foul line once, but the encounter left them struggling with heartache and guilt, turning away from each other to focus on their families. Now retired from the majors, they run a batting cage together and coach rival Little League teams as they juggle fatherhood and being single again. Though Ruben has never given up hope that Alan might look at him as more than a friend, Alan seems determined to keep things the way they’ve always been. But long-buried feelings and desires have a way of resurfacing, and Ruben can’t wait forever.

One Last Road Trip by Kerry Freeman

With the last game of his Major League Baseball career behind him, Jake Wilson hits the road. Years have passed, but he never got over the romance he shared with Mikko Niemi back in college. Finally, he’s ready to do something about it. He starts with some crucial visits to his ex-wife in New Mexico, his son in Oklahoma, and his daughter in Tennessee. But his true destination is Mikko’s home in Georgia, where he’s hoping to get a second chance at love.

Buy at Dreamspinner: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=4197 (ebook)

http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=4198 (paperback)

Buy at ARe:

https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-playingball-1304727-166.html

Buy at Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/Playing-Ball-ebook/dp/B00FF0X2BE/

Check out the full schedule of this Blog Tour here:

http://shaeconnorwrites.com/2013/09/20/playing-ball-blog-tour-schedule/

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

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

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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.

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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==/

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Reviewed by Elizabetta

IlluminationTITLE: Illumination
AUTHOR: Rowan Speedwell
PUBLISHER: Riptide Publishing
LENGTH: 307 pages
BLURB: Adam Craig is burned out. Lead singer of the hard rock band Black Varen, he’s tired of the empty life of groupies, paparazzi, and hotel rooms. Worse, a life in the closet. After the final concert of their latest tour, he flees the after-party in pursuit of memories of lost summers and carefree days, until he passes out on the patio of a shuttered lake resort.

Miles Caldwell is a brilliant artist, tied by agoraphobia and social anxiety to his family’s lodge. Alone but for his parrot, he spends his days illuminating manuscripts and hiding from the complexities of life. When he discovers Adam asleep in a deck chair, he’s furious but intrigued. Adam soon charms his way into Miles’ bed, and they lose themselves in a summer idyll, safe from the compromises and claims of reality.

But Adam’s life, with all its demands, is waiting for him. And Miles, uncertain of Adam’s true feelings, is battling demons of his own. Somehow, the man who’s never home and the man who never leaves it must find the strength to fight for a future together.

REVIEW:

Light, warmth, passion. And some turmoil to make the falling in love even sweeter.

I think I was smiling much of the time reading this.

Miles, is a gifted artist, he illuminates precious manuscripts, turning plain text into decorated works of art, much as church monks of the Middle Ages did before the time of the printing press. He makes his own period pigments, drafts the fancy lettering, and carefully paints in the elaborate embellishments. It’s like lush embroidery on paper. The addition of fine gold leaf elevates it, making the text glow. Miles loses himself in his work, quill in hand, working long hours to bring perfection to the page. His art helps him forget, keeps the fears at bay.

Adam, famous metal rock star, long-haired and golden-eyed music god, illuminates Miles. Fires him up, brings him back into life. Gives him companionship and hope. Adam is a jaded musician but he knows compassion and gentleness.

It is sweet reading, getting to know Miles and Adam. The author nicely balances that early glowing awareness the guys have for each other with the darkness always lurking for Miles… He has memory loss resulting from a horrific, long ago car accident that killed his parents. He’s recovered physically, but his fears have left him an agoraphobic recluse shutting himself away from the world on his lake-side family estate. Lucky for him, Adam, trying to flee all the rock-star crap, drops into his life. Adam sees the sweet guy beneath all the cranky. The mystery becomes how one guy tethered to his home, a prisoner to his fears, can make a relationship with another guy who is always on the move and lives hundreds of miles away.

I loved the set-up, the isolation of Miles and Adam at the lake house, the time they spend together, learning each other. It immerses them and the reader into a kind of dreamy other-world, intimate and protected.

“… he ran his fingers gently over Adam’s cheekbone, trailing them around this ear as if the curve of cartilage were something rare and precious… his eyes gone smoky blue and deep in thought, the way they did when he was thinking about his art. Adam felt… like Miles’s attention was on him the way a curator’s might be on a sculpture he was deciding to acquire.”

These two artists teach each other about their respective work– we feel Miles’s passion for illuminating, we learn about Adam’s obsession with musical theatre. They are awestruck, tender, and caring. They make each other laugh. It felt like falling in love as they fall in love. And yet…

The psychological trauma that keeps Miles shut away informs all his thoughts and actions. His memory loss disconnects him from his childhood when his artistic gifts were taking hold and moving in a different direction. The boy who created glorious paintings is now a man confined to copying an old art form.

“That’s all he does now, copy the way things were done five hundred years ago, as if reconnecting with someone else’s history makes up for lacking his own.”

It is a childhood lost; he is lost and can’t find his way back to a semblance of normal. The second half of the book takes a darker tone because of the limitations this puts on the guys’ relationship.

There are supporting characters, critical to the story, that deserve a mention. Lisa, Miles’s sister, is a caring, supportive force in his life; I really liked her in the story. Doug and Robert are a committed couple and childhood friends of Miles that have stood by him, giving him comfort in an unorthodox way. There’s also Grace, Miles’s African grey parrot, whose mimicking adds some laughs. The author does a fine job building these characters and weaving them into the story.

In general, the pacing is good, there were a few repetitive sections, and there is a lot of information given about the art of illumination, but I was happy for every page. I really got into these guys and their journey. This is not just a fluffy romance. Miles has serious issues that give the piece a dark edge… and yet it is infused with hope and light.

Elizabetta’s Rating:

BUY LINK: Riptide  ::  Amazon (Paperback)

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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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ROWAN SPEEDWELL

Rowan Speedwell lives in a tarpaper shack in the North Woods, without so much as cable TV to keep her warm. Compared to her, J.D. Salinger is an extrovert. She is allergic to publicity and loathes marketing, so her books only sell one or two copies. If you have one, she thanks you, as your purchase enables her to buy cat food for her diabetic feline companion, Kimball O’Hara.

She does have internet, when she hikes to the top of the mountain and fires up her PC Jr., so visit her website or follow her on Twitter at @rowanspeedwell if you need to request a refund for the one book you did buy.

⊹⊹⊹⊹⊹⊹⊹⊹⊹⊹⊹⊹⊹⊹⊹⊹⊹⊹⊹⊹

~ GIVEAWAY ~

Illumination_150x300(1)TO WIN A FREE COPY OF ILLUMINATION, LEAVE A COMMENT TO THIS POST:

Follow the given format to enter yourself into the contest:

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The format in which you’d prefer to read the book, in case you win*:
Message to the author:

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 6th October, 2013 @ 11:59 PM Central Time!!

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Hello to the Sid Love crew – thank you so much for having me!

My paranormal novella Devil at the Crossroads was just released by Riptide Publishing, and I’m glad to have the chance to chat a little about how this story was born. And, at the end of the post, there’s also a juicy giveaway for all lovely readers…!

I have made a few posts over the last few days – you can check out the blog tour schedule here :)!

 I (heart) short stories!

DevilAtTheCrossroads_150x300(1)When I first started writing, I used to suck at short stories.

I used to get all these vague ideas for long, convoluted stories, picturesque scenes with poignant thoughts and elaborate descriptions . . . and then never get anywhere with any of those. I was a bit too enamoured of my own prose and, to put it mildly, totally unable to plot. I would go on for two pages of flowery description about some inspiring scenery, ramble on a stream of consciousness for another three, insert an oh-so-bohemian dream sequence for another five, all the while basking in just how fancy all those words looked and completely missing the fact that they were, well . . . completely useless. They weren’t taking the story anywhere. Heck, there was barely a story in the first place, just a collage of very picturesque chunks of prose.

Don’t get me wrong, fine prose is a very nice thing, and I even managed to win a couple of prizes because of how artfully I was able to arrange those pretty words to hide the fact that I wasn’t actually saying anything! But . . . it turned out soon that it was not enough. I would ramble on for pages and pages until eventually I would just . . . drift off and towards some new project. Which would, of course, never be completed either. I spent a few years writing and somehow feeling that ‘my thing’ was leaving unfinished stories that meandered nowhere, but did so in a very wordy way – what a depressing specialty!

That was when I started my Creative Writing BA at university. Now, like every degree in an artistic field, this is a potentially very useless one: because nobody can really teach you how to write, or paint, or play music, and nobody can make you do it. What they can do is teach you a set of more or less standard skills or tools, that you are then free to use or not use as you please. They did it in my fine arts high school, and I was able to work for a while just relying on those technical tools, albeit not having any real talent (as I mentioned in my recent post at Fiction Vixen). But, when they did it in the Creative Writing BA, the results were incredibly different, because this time I did have some rough talent that could be harnessed and trained.

What helped me the most were not the lectures about prose style – I was too bogged down with that already! – but courses that focused on plotting, on the bare mechanics of storytelling, on how to make sure that a story works and has a strong, solid structure before adding to it and embellishing it. I realized then that I always used to just slather on the embellishment, but without having any structure under it. Curiously enough, the best course for this wasn’t a prose writing one at all, but one on ‘Writing Short Films,’ where descriptions and long musings were entirely absent and I was pushed out of my comfort zone and forced to work on the substance of the story.

Now, assignments for university were of course very short, and that was when I smashed my nose against my wordiness. For the first year, I hated, hated, hated having to work on short pieces – it was so different from what I was used to! But my reaction was to obsess over it, reading piles of short stories and hammering at the keyboard every day, determined to get it right. I started to appreciate short stories in a way I never had. I had never possessed the ability to sum up something with a few concise words instead of blathering on for five paragraphs, the skill of taking one clear idea and execute it cleanly in a page, such as in the classic Sentry by Fredric Brown, the ability to develope a whole plot, complete with the classic inciting incident, turning point and climax, in a flawless miniature version . . .

I started seeing short stories as bonsai trees, requiring a lot of care and hard work in order obtain a small but precise result, a miniature version of a novel. It was a challenge to know what to prune, where to tighten, what words to discard, what branches of the story would need to be sacrificed – but slowly I started enjoying the challenge more and more.

And, well! The result is that I, the former queen of rambling wordiness and sworn enemy of briefness, somehow ended up specializing in short stories. If you have read something of mine already, you’ll know that I have only published novellas and short stories up until now! I know that they aren’t the most popular format – I too wasn’t a fan until but a few years ago, and it is difficult to find a well-executed short story, at that – but I have just grown to love them a lot. It might partly be because I have some attention issues, so a strong short story can hold my attention in full throughout the whole thing, while with novels I often find myself drifting off along the way. Occasionally, I even find myself wondering if a particular story was watered down to get it to novel length, and I wonder whether it might have worked better as a short.

That is one of the main reasons why I have only written shorter works so far, including Devil at the Crossroads. Those stories seem to just naturally fit the novella/short story format; that amount of words was enough to tell that particular story, so, when it was done, I stopped. I suppose I could have added bits and bobs, stretched scenes, piled on words until the story grew into a novel: but would the work be better for it? I’m afraid I would have a relapse in my blabbering habits of stories past! I’m afraid I will remain specialized in short stories until a plot comes to mind that just naturally fits a novel length. And I promise – when that happens, you’ll be the first to know! 😉

Cornelia xxx

 

!!Trivia Contest!!

Attention, dear readers – this release comes with a trivia contest, and the winners will receive a free ebook of their choice from my backlist!

There are three easy questions, whose answer can be found reading Devil at the Crossroads. Keep an eye for the answers as you read the story, then email me the answers at corneliagrey [at] yahoo [dot] com – do not leave them in the comments, remember, you don’t want to make life too easy for the competition ;)!

The deadline for the contest is September the 30th: I will randomly select two readers among those who emailed me replying correctly to the three questions. The winners will be officially announced on my blog (as well as emailed!) and they will receive a free ebook of their choice from my backlist!

Ready for the questions? Here we go…

1)      What is the model of Logan’s guitar?

2)      Throughout the story, three spider tattoos are mentioned. Where are they located?

3)      Farfarello happens to mention a future birthday of Logan’s. Which birthday is that?

Good luck! And remember, email me your answers by September the 30th to be entered in the contest :)!

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Cornelia Grey is a creative writing student fresh out of university, with a penchant for fine arts and the blues. Born and raised in the hills of Northern Italy, where she collected her share of poetry and narrative prizes, Cornelia moved to London to pursue her studies.

She likes cats, knitting, performing in theatre, going to museums, collecting mugs, and hanging out with her grandma. When writing, she favors curious, surreal stories, steampunk, and mixed-genre fiction. Her heroes are always underdogs, and she loves them for it.

You can find her at www.corneliagrey.com

Annd also on [Twitter] [Livejournal] [Blogger] [Facebook]

 

Devil at the Crossroads Blurb:

Devil at the CrossroadsThe devil covets more than his soul …

Six years ago, Logan Hart sold his soul to the devil to become the greatest bluesman of all time—and now the devil has come to collect.

The irony is that Logan squandered his gift. High on fame, money, and drugs, he ignored his muse and neglected his music. And despite managing to escape showbiz in a moment of clarity, it’s too late to redeem himself. All that’s left is to try to go out with some dignity. Alas, the prospect of an eternity in Hell isn’t helping much with that goal.

But Farfarello, the devil who bought Logan’s soul, isn’t ready to drag him down to Hell quite yet. He’s just spent six years working his ass off to whip a bluesman into shape, and he refuses to let that—or the opportunity for more sinful pleasures with Logan—go to waste.

You can read an excerpt and purchase ‘Devil at the Crossroads’ here!

 

Today, Rick R. Reed takes a stop at The Blog of Sid Love to promote his newly released book “Hungry for Love”! The author reads out an excerpt from the book in the form of a VLog, which is actually interesting. Check out as Rick shares with you the exciting moment when the two main characters – Brandon and Nate – meet for the first time —

 

 

HUNGRY FOR LOVE

Hungry for LoveBlurb

Nate Tippie and Brandon Wilde are gay, single, and both hoping to meet that special man, even though fate has not yet delivered him to their doorstep. Nate’s sister, Hannah, and her kooky best friend, Marilyn, are about to help fate with that task by creating a profile on the gay dating site, OpenHeartOpenMind. The two women are only exploring, but when they need a face and body for the persona they create, they use Nate as the model. 

When Brandon comes across the false profile, he falls for the guy he sees online. Keeping up the charade, Hannah begins corresponding with him, posing as Nate. Real complications begin when Brandon wants to meet Nate, but Nate doesn’t even know he’s being used in the online dating ruse. Hannah and Marilyn concoct another story and send Nate out to let the guy down gently. But when Nate and Brandon meet, the two men feel an instant and powerful pull toward each other. Cupid seems to have shot his bow, but how do Nate and Brandon climb out from under a mountain of deceit without letting go of their chance at love?

Buy Links

From Dreamspinner Press (ebook): http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=4178

From Dreamspinner Press (paperback):

http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=4179

Amazon Kindle: http://www.amazon.com/Hungry-for-Love-ebook/dp/B00F5KRZOO/

Amazon Paperback: http://www.amazon.com/Hungry-Love-Rick-R-Reed/dp/1627981454/

All Romance Ebooks: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-hungryforlove-1294299-149.html

REVIEWS

From LIVE YOUR LIFE, BUY THE BOOK

“I loved his writing style, I loved the flow of the book, I didn’t feel like there was anything missing by the time the end of the story came around and I was really able to love Brandon and Nate very easily…this story had romance, love, friendship, deception, jealousy, heartbreak…. Read the review: http://liveyourlifebuythebook.wordpress.com/2013/09/05/hungry-for-love/.

From ON TOP DOWN UNDER BOOK REVIEW

“…overall, I really enjoyed this book…it was perfect…” Read the review: http://ontopdownunderbookreviews.com/hungry-for-love-rick-r-reed/.

From MRS. CONDIT AND FRIENDS READ BOOKS

“…written beautifully with humor, and love, and intelligence. Rick Reed has done a wonderful, wonderful job with this story!!” Read the review: http://mrsconditreadsbooks.com/index.php/?p=14621.

From AMOS LASSEN REVIEWS

“Reed has never been afraid to tackle the important issues of the LGBT community and here he looks at friendship, love, lies, heartbreak and jealousy while creating characters that we can identify with and grow to love.” Read the review: http://reviewsbyamoslassen.com/?p=24500.

From USA Today

“I’ve gotten distracted reading a book before but never because I stopped to marvel at the genius of the author…sigh worthy….” Read the review: http://www.usatoday.com/story/happyeverafter/2013/09/13/recommended-rhys-ford-rick-r-reed-cardeno-c/2807953/.

READ AN EXCERPT…

http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=4178

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Rick R. Reed is all about exploring the romantic entanglements of gay men in contemporary, realistic settings. While his stories often contain elements of suspense, mystery and the paranormal, his focus ultimately returns to the power of love. He is the author of dozens of published novels, novellas, and short stories. He is a three-time EPIC eBook Award winner (for Caregiver, Orientation and The Blue Moon Cafe). Lambda Literary Review has called him, “a writer that doesn’t disappoint.” Rick lives in Seattle with his husband and a very spoiled Boston terrier. He is forever “at work on another novel.”

Visit Rick’s website at www.rickrreed.com or follow his blog at http://rickrreedreality.blogspot.com/. You can also like Rick on Facebook at www.facebook.com/rickrreedbooks  or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/rickrreed. Rick always enjoys hearing from readers and answers all e-mails personally. Send him a message at jimmyfels@gmail.com

When secondary characters steal the show

Reviewers have frequently commented that my secondary characters are one of the strengths of my writing. They aren’t cardboard cut-outs there simply to fulfil a plot point. Even if we never know their full story, they give a sense of having a full story.

Chase the Stars (Lang Downs, #2)Never has this been more true than in the character of Neil Emery in the Lang Downs series. Neil started out as a name on the page, one in a crowd of jackaroos all curious about their new boss. Then, he became a homophobic bigot determined to run Caine off when he found out Caine was gay. But it turns out there’s more to Neil than just his homophobia. Above all else, Neil is loyal, and once someone has won his loyalty, nothing else matters. I won’t say how Caine managed it in case anyone reading this post hasn’t read Inherit the Sky yet, although since I’m going to keep talking about how Neil develops through the rest of the series, I may not be able to avoid all spoilers. Once Caine has won Neil’s loyalty, Neil’s attitude changes. “I’m sorry for all the names I called you, boss,” Neil said. “I won’t give you any more trouble.  From here on out, I’m your man.”

I got questions from readers about how that would really play out. Would Neil really be able to keep that promise to Caine?

Chase the Stars opens with the answer to that in a couple of different ways, and we begin to see how deeply Neil’s loyalty runs. A teenager stumbles into the hotel where they’re all having dinner, crying because his brother is being bashed and he’s afraid he’ll be killed. Macklin is out the door like a shot. And then this:

The boy had barely finished his answer before Macklin was out the door.

“Neil—”

“Yes, boss,” the jackaroo at the next table replied, already on his feet and following Macklin out the door before Caine finished speaking.

Obeying orders, even half-complete ones, is one thing, but Neil takes it a step further, defending Caine and Macklin to all the new jackaroos on the station.

“Some of you may have heard rumors about the boss.”

Chris slipped inside to listen.

“You might have heard people say he’s a poofter,” the man went on. Chris thought he’d heard Caine and Macklin call him Neil, but he wasn’t sure.  “You might have even heard less polite things about him.”

Chris hoped Neil wasn’t getting ready to deny it.  Macklin had said they didn’t talk about it but they didn’t hide it either.

“Let me make this very clear,” Neil continued, all but bristling as he spoke.  “Caine Neiheisel and Macklin Armstrong are the backbone of this station. If you can’t deal with working for a poofter, leave now, because there’s not a man on this station who will tolerate any kind of slur against either of them.”

“Wait,” one of the men said.  “Either of them? Armstrong is gay too?”

“Do you have a problem with that?” Neil demanded.

“No,” the man said, raising his hands in pacification.  “I’m just… surprised.  And, well, a little surprised everyone is so open about it.”

“Caine saved Neil’s life,” another of the hands explained. “He now feels the need to defend the boss against any threat, real or otherwise.”

“Like Macklin would let Caine get so much as a bruise,” another hand joked.

“Caine works his arse off just like the rest of us,” Neil insisted.

“And then works Macklin’s arse at night.”

“No way in hell Macklin lets anyone fuck him.”

“Caine’s the boss.”

“On the station. No way he’s the boss in the bedroom.”

“Enough!” Neil roared. “Get your sorry arses out of here and get to work!”

CTFbuttonIt’s enough to make Chris feel safe for the first time in years. So now we have loyalty that goes not just to taking orders from Caine but also to defending him. It’s a change in attitude from Neil’s original reaction to Caine, but it’s still directed very much at Caine. Has Neil’s homophobia truly faded or will it rear its head again when faced with other gay men?

This is where we see Neil’s true growth, because when first his brother and later his best friend come out to him, he doesn’t blink. Well, maybe he blinks, but he takes it in stride and supports them both through their struggles. Just… no details please!

Neil will never get a book of his own. He’s as straight as they come and actually gets married (and has kids) over the course of the story, but he’s the character who has stayed with me the most because he’s the one who gives me hope. If Neil, with all his learned homophobia, can reach the point of being the staunchest ally of the men of Lang Downs, maybe, just maybe, there’s hope for the rest of the world.

I’ll leave you with this, Neil’s finest moment from Conquer the Flames.

“And you didn’t go looking for it, because why would you?” Neil finished. “Look, I’m not an expert on relationships and stuff, but sex is supposed to be fun and feel good and bring you closer to the person you’re with. I know it wasn’t that way for you—and the fucker should be shot for what he did—but I don’t think no sex is the answer, especially not now that you have a great guy to have it with. Just, you know, spare me the details.”

“No details,” Ian promised. “That’s what happened last night. Things got a little intense and I panicked. Thorne wanted to know why. It’s not the first time he’s asked, but it’s the first time I answered him. He started cursing and shouting, at him, not at me, but I was already freaked out, and I just couldn’t deal with any more.”

“So what did you do?” Neil asked.

“I locked myself in my room until I couldn’t hear him shouting anymore, then I went to bed alone for the first time in a week, and I hated every second of it,” Ian said. “I don’t think I really slept until he came in to get dressed this morning and lay down with me instead.”

“You know I’d do anything for you, right?” Neil said. Ian nodded, not sure where that question was leading. “If you need to talk about this, I’ll listen, details and all.

҉҉  ——–  ҉҉

CONQUER THE FLAMES

PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
LENGTH:
254 pages
RELEASE DATE: 09/27/2013
BLURB: Thorne Lachlan knows a thing or two about getting himself safely out of a blaze. For years he fought in the world’s hot spots, a Commando with the Australian Army. Now, retired, he fights flames for the Royal Fire Service. When a grassfire brings him to Lang Downs, the next sheep station in danger, Thorne meets Ian Duncan and sparks fly that neither man can put out. But both men have ghosts from the past that stand in the way of moving beyond mutual attraction.

While Thorne longs for the home he could share with Ian at Lang Downs, he fears his own instability might make him a danger to others. And Ian’s always believed that the foster care nightmare he escaped before coming to Lang Downs would make any relationship impossible. Trust doesn’t come easily to Thorne or Ian until the fire’s aftermath forces them to see past the scars keeping them both from healing.

BUY LINK: Dreamspinner Press

✿⊹✿⊹✿⊹✿        ⊹⊹        ✿⊹✿⊹✿⊹✿

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Ariel Tachna bio pic (1)Ariel Tachna lives outside of Houston with her husband, her daughter and son, and their cat. Before moving there, she traveled all over the world, having fallen in love with both France, where she found her husband, and India, where she dreams of retiring some day. She’s bilingual with snippets of four other languages to her credit and is as in love with languages as she is with writing.

You can e-mail Ariel at arieltachna@gmail.com

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/pages/Ariel-Tachna/185759935215

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/arieltachna

Website:  http://www.arieltachna.com/

GIVEAWAY

Ariel Tachna gives you all a chance to win an ebook of one of her titles from the backlist.

TO ENTER YOURSELF IN THIS CONTEST, LEAVE A COMMENT TO THIS POST:

Name*:
Email ID*:
Which book from the author’s back list would you like to read?*:
The format in which you’d prefer to read the book, in case you win*:

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

===================================

CONTEST WILL END ON 28th September, 2013 @ 11:59 PM Central Time!!

After MidnightBlurb:

Gordon Frost is a survivor. He survived a war that ravaged the nation, and he made it through the orphanages and crime-ridden slums that followed. With few prospects for the future, Gordon carved out a niche for himself in the expanding drug trade of Lexington, PA. It’s not pretty, but it’s his, and it beats what he was doing before. But a classic case of being in the wrong place at the wrong time results in a brush with death, going by the name of Adam. Afterward, the life that seemed good enough before, isn’t quite the same.

Adam Blake is an assassin on the brink of being terminated by the very organization that controls him. He completed his mission, but not without being seen. With his secrets in danger of being exposed by Gordon, Adam knows he should kill the smart-mouthed redhead, but finds himself intrigued by the troublesome civilian instead.

When Gordon’s knack for finding trouble combines with the dangerous consequences of Adam’s indecision, their worlds intertwine in an explosive way.

Title:  After Midnight

Author: Santino Hassell

Publisher: self-published

Release Date: September 17, 2013

Pages: 244 pages

Available at: Amazon, Smashwords, B&N, Are

INTERVIEW

My excitement is at STALKER-LEVELS at this moment!  I’m so THRILLED to welcome SANTINO HASSELL, author of the newly released “After Midnight” to The Blog of Sid Love.  Santino is best known for being the co-author of “In the Company of Shadows” (one of my all-time favorite reads).  After Midnight is his first solo, self-published effort!

Susan:  For those that are new to you and your writing, tell us a little about yourself!

SH: Hey Susan J I’m really stoked to me here. It’s my first interview, so be gentle. And, for those that don’t know me, I’m Santino Hassell. I used to go by the nickname Sonny, and those of you who are fans of The Godfather will know why. If I had to describe myself in a nutshell, I would say that I’m a proud bisexual dude living in NYC, a writer of LGBT fiction, an educator, a reader, a gamer, and a wannabe solo-traveler. 

I’ve been writing for the past couple of decades, almost as soon as I was in my first Creative Writing class in high school, and consider it to be a large part of who I am. But other than being a writer, I dedicate the majority of my days to teaching (my other biggest love). 

Susan:  And how’d you get into writing? 

SH: It all started in freshman year of high school (20 years ago, JFC). We took up journaling for a Creative Writing class and I think I was the only person in there to take it seriously. I started recording everything in my journal (this shitty spiral notebook) from my thoughts, nightmares, memories, to song lyrics and poems. I was in a band for a couple of years so there were a LOT of emo/angry song lyrics. I used to write fictional accounts of things that happened to me, mostly changing the names and leaving everything else the same, as a way to record important things that happened. 

I stopped writing for several years after high school, but was re-introduced when my ex-wife introduced me to the amazing thing known as slash fandom when I was around 20 or 21. There was no going back from there. I participated in fandom primarily as a reader, reviewer, and host website before actually starting to write, and eventually veered off to original slash. That’s where everything took off and I began taking it seriously.

AMblogtourbadgeSusan:  You co-wrote “In the Company of Shadows”, the epic online series (with such a loyal, intense following…I’m a HUGE fan!)  How did the process of writing After Midnight differ?  

SH: Writing alone was a big change from writing with Ais. We were able to motivate each other, bounce ideas off each other, and brainstorm to put together all of the puzzle pieces. Writing a novel alone was so different, especially because the first draft was originally intended to be something I was going to write for fun with a “pantser” attitude.  

When my writing matured some and I decide to rewrite and revise, I wanted to focus on ensuring that After Midnight could be read independently from ICoS, but also that my characters in After Midnight felt as real and genuine as readers have said my characters in ICoS are. I was used to instantaneous feedback from Ais about whether or not she could hear my character’s voices clearly, and in the second, third, fourth (you get it) drafts of After Midnight, it was more of an ongoing process.  

That was one of the things I had to learn to adjust to. Being confident in myself and stop over-analyzing every line before I even ship the manuscript off to a beta!

Susan:  I love Gordon, the MC of the book.  He’s so…cool, but uncool…open but guarded…a walking contradiction.  Is he inspired by anyone in your real life?  

SH: Gordon is a combination of many different people in my life; more so their feelings and frustrations rather than their actual personalities. 

I know so many people who are talented, attractive, and wonderful, but despite the fact that they are AMAZING, they still feel like what they do and who they are, aren’t good enough. So combine that with all of the people I know who feel stuck in their jobs, their locations, or even their relationships—and you get Gordon. An insecure guy who feels that he isn’t worth as much as his friends, and who is too afraid to crawl out of the rut he’s dug himself into, but who still manages to be someone that people care about and gravitate towards.    

Susan:  Gordon and Adam aren’t “traditional” romance heroes.  If you had to try and convince a romance reader why they should read After Midnight, what would you tell them? 

SH: Even though they’re not traditional heroes, Gordon and Adam are intense, their story is gritty, and their journey ends up both passionate and explosive in the end. They don’t instantly fall in love, they don’t show affection the way some romance characters do, but there is no denying that they are drawn to each other despite all of the obstacles trying to keep them apart.

Susan:  How have you found this entire experience of publishing your first book?

SH:A little intimidating and nerve-wracking but ultimately enjoyable and educating. Everything feels really big and overwhelming, but with the help of amazing friends and an awesome team of people, it’s finally coming together in an exciting way. It’s been quite a ride.

Susan:  You’re definitely going to grow a huge fanbase from this book!!! So, tell us, what’s next for you…anything exciting in the pipeline for us to look forward to?  

SH: I have a lot of projects lined up, but the one I’m focusing on next is the second draft of a contemporary paranormal novel that focuses on the journey of a psychic who is determined to solve a murder. I’m excited about that one and it’s totally different than everything else I’ve written. 

Susan:  Thanks so much, Santino, for spending time with us! It was a TREAT!!!!

SH: Thank you so much for having me!

About the Author

Santino Hassell is the co-author of the popular epic series “In the Company of Shadows” and the newly released solo project “After Midnight”. When not writing, he works in education, is a single dad to two amazing kids, and can be found either reading, playing video games, or complaining about the failure of New York’s public transportation system.

www.santinohassell.com

www.facebook.com/santinohassellbooks

www.twitter.com/santinohassell

www.goodreads.com/santino_hassell

 GIVEAWAY

The author has an “After Midnight” swag package up for giveaway that includes a free copy of the ebook along with “After Midnight” branded mason jar glass, koozie, pens, mousepad, and matchbox.

AMgiveawayswag

To win, all you need to do is LEAVE A COMMENT to this post:

Follow the given format to enter yourself into the contest:

Name*:
Email ID*:
The format in which you’d prefer to read the book, in case you win*:
Message to the author:

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

===================================

CONTEST WILL END ON 21stptember, 2013 @ 11:59 PM Central Time!!

Reviewed by Jennifer B.

Catch a Ghost (Hell or High Water, #1)TITLE: Catch a Ghost
SERIES: Hell or High Water #1
AUTHOR: S. E. Jakes
PUBLISHER: Riptide Publishing
LENGTH: 300 pages
BLURB: Everyone knows that Prophet—former Navy SEAL, former CIA spook, full-time pain in the ass—works alone and thinks only about the trouble he can cause. But his boss, Phil Butler of Extreme Escapes, LTD., has just assigned Proph not only a new partner but also a case haunted by ghosts from Proph’s past. Suddenly, he’s got to confront them both head on.

Tom Boudreaux—failed FBI agent, failed sheriff, full time believer in bad luck—is wondering why the head of a private contracting firm has hunted him down to offer him a job.  Still he’s determined to succeed this time, despite being partnered with Prophet, EE, LTD’s most successful, lethal, and annoying operative, and even though the case is also resurrecting his own painful past.

Together, Prophet and Tom must find a way to take down killers in the dangerous world of underground cage matches, while fighting their own dangerous attraction. And when they find themselves caught in the crossfire, these two loners are forced to trust each other and work together to escape their ghosts . . . or pay the price.

REVIEW:

I will start by saying that I have loved Prophet from his very first appearance in the Men of Honor series.  He was mysterious but could always be counted on to get the job done and provide whatever support was necessary.  We never actually got very much detail about him; just enough to give a slow build up to this story.  Needless to say, I’ve been looking forward to it for a long time.

This book could easily be read as a stand-alone and start to a hot new series.  However, I am a fan of the slow burn, and even though I have zero patience for waiting.  That’s exactly how it felt up to this point.  I’m glad I had the background of the Men of Honor series behind me before reading this.  That’s also why I didn’t feel lost or confused when this story began with a mysterious video.

When we see Prophet this time, he is on forced recovery with two broken wrists.  He is also suffering from a degenerative something or other with his eyes that can only negatively affect his current career in a matter of time.  In addition, he is being forced to take on a new partner, as well as his continual grooming to take over as head of EE, Ltd. (Extreme Escapes).

Prophet has many issues, not the least of which was his time as a POW.  This man can handle torture like nobody’s business, although his body seems to be taking a more permanent dislike to the treatment.  He is a bit unstable because of that, coupled with the other duties he has had to carry out over the years, which is, of course, why I love him so.  He works best alone, has resigned himself to the fact he will always be alone, personally and professionally, and makes no excuses.  He is also haunted by dreams and the ghost of his good friend/lover.

Tom has a few issues of his own.  He’s a bit of a hot mess with his temper issues and the bad mojo that has followed his hot, tattooed, pierced self from his previous jobs.  The current job appears to be a last chance for him, and though the deck seems to be stacked against him from the start, there always seems to be a bigger plan in effect.

Prophet and Tom – talk about hot stuff.  Both fighters, strong and dominant, yet both damaged and vulnerable.  As they investigate their first case, they spend as much time trying to figure each other out.  They fight, joke, take care of one another and tear up the sheets, all while keeping secrets from each other.

The story starts out with the anonymously sent video, but as the story progresses, it becomes about the current investigation, one that is a bit personal for Prophet.  Things come full circle though, and eventually ties all together in one way or another.  As things unfold, Tom and Prophet continue to jockey around having some kind of relationship.  Prophet never makes things easy though, and Tom quickly realizes he is also competing with a ghost.

There is a lot of action in this story, and I was on the edge of my seat through most of it.  While some may disagree, I loved that there was no HEA yet for Prophet or Tom.  Even though I was cursing the Kindle, I was happy there wasn’t even a HFN.  Prophet still has so many issues, and Tom has a few as well.  I never expected things to be easy for them and believe it will be all the more better for it in the end when it does happen, so I’m very thankful the author has taken this route.  The characters are written with so much room for growth, even though they seem to have come such a long way already.

There is a bit of a love triangle here.  While there isn’t any cheating, per se (they aren’t actually in a committed relationship after all), there is other flirting between Prophet and Cillian.  Speaking of the super sexy and mysterious downstairs spook neighbor, Cillian, he and Prophet text and IM, and even flirt quite a bit, but have never actually met until later on in the story.  There seems there could be a whole other story for Cillian, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed (and will gladly beg) that we get it.

A lot of choices are made at the end of this book, leaving me on the edge, dangling with questions and begging for more.  The next book cannot come out fast enough for me, and I’m glad it won’t be too long a wait.  I believe this was the best story yet in this series (I’m including Men of Honor) and certainly am not ready to see the last of any of these characters.

Jennifer’s Rating: star_review

PRE-ORDER: Riptide

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

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

So, here’s the deal for the contest.  S. E. Jakes is giving away three prizes.  The first, the grand prize, is a Kindle Paperwhite. Second prize is a $25 Amazon gift certificate and third prize is a $10 Amazon gift certificate.  You can have multiple entries at multiple places and they will all count.  Below are the ways to enter:
* Leave a comment here today on this post and let the author know what books you bought today, last book you read, etc.
* Leave a comment on any and all blog tour stops (see the list below) – each comment puts your name in the hat another time
* Put a link to the contest on your Twitter or your Facebook and link back to Jakes (either include the author’s twitter handle or highlight her name on FB so she can easily find your post and include it.
So basically, you can get your name in a lot for a chance to win!
Link to the Blog Tour page: Riptide – Catch a Ghost Blog Tour
20 Questions with Edmond Manning author of “King Mai”

kingmaiBlurb:
Adopted from Thailand and never one to fit in with the local bubbas, life has been rough around the edges for Mai Kearns, even before he came out of the closet. Now, almost ten years past the torture of high school, Mai still can’t catch a break: he and his parents stand to lose their beloved farm.

How will a “King Weekend” help change Mai’s fate? What has narrator Vin Vanbly been up to for the four weeks he’s been sneaking around Mai’s hometown? At the urging of a ransom note from ‘The Lost Kings,’ Mai embarks on an impossible treasure hunt chasing mystic poetry, Fibonacci Hopscotch, ancient prophecy, the letter ‘x,’ and a confounding, penguin-marching army.

The stakes are high: if Mai fails, the Lost Kings will permanently claim him as their own. Finding the treasure may unlock the secret to saving his family farm. But can this angry farmer risk opening his broken heart before the weekend is over? Mai Kearns has 40 hours to get very, very curious in this second installment of The Lost and Founds.

. ≈.:.≈.:.≈.:.≈.:.≈.:.≈.:.≈.:.≈.

20 Questions with Edmond Manning author of “King Mai”

  1. Coffee or Tea? Diet Pepsi
  2. Coke or Pepsi? Caffeine free Diet Coke
  3. Plain or Peanut M&Ms? Yes, please
  4. Beer or wine? Red wine
  5. Muffins or Cupcakes? Cupcakes – always go with frosting
  6. Computer or Television? Computer
  7. Would you travel the world or travel space? Stay home
  8. My favorite pizza isItalian sausage, heavy garlic
  9. My favorite book genre isscience fiction
  10. My superpower of choice would beteleportation. Hmmm. Maybe I would travel the world if I could teleport.
  11. On a rainy day, you’ll find meenjoying a long walk
  12. When I get free time, I’llorganize my hundreds of Firefox bookmarks.
  13. If you had a million dollarsPay someone to organize my Firefox bookmarks.
  14. My dream vacation would beTwo months luxruiating in an northern Italian villa with a sweet local couple who cooked every meal and liked calling me “Bobo.” In this fantasy, a local unemployed mechanic named Ricardo gives me massages every other day.
  15. If you could be a character in any novel you’ve ever read, who would you be and why?  John Harmon, Our Mutual Friend by Charles Dickens. While many Dickens characters suffer tremendously for their happy endings, he gets hilarious step parents, a happy marriage, fun in-laws, and serious wealth and all he has to do is go undercover for a little while. In Dickens’ world, that’s getting off easy.
  16. How many books do you read each year? I’m embarrassed to admit this, but since I started getting published, the number dropped significantly. Used to be about 35 per year. These days: 5.
  17. If you could pick a book to turn into a movie, which one would it be? Can I say mine? No? Okay. Nine Princes in Amber by Roger Zelazny or Earthsea by Ursula Le Guin
  18. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live? Sienna, Italy or a remote forest cabin along the northern Oregon coast. My neighbor would be an local, unemployed mechanic named Ricardo who gave me massages every other day.
  19. Which store would you choose to max out your credit card? An upscale grocery store. I love buying food. I mean, it’s like a weird fetish. Yay! Out of milk – I need to go to the store!
  20. What are you reading right now? Saga (comic by Brian Vaughn) and Everything Matters by Ron Currie Jr.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Edmond Manning has been writing for many, many years.

After graduating from Northern Illinois University (NIU) with an English Education degree (graduated Valedictorian from the University Honors Program), Manning pursued and completed a Masters of Science within the field of Instructional Technology. These two curious backgrounds allowed for practicing a unique blend of creative and technical writing, skills that were enhanced over a 22+ year as an e-learning consultant.

During those consulting years, Manning feverishly wrote fiction, completed three novels, and yet never pursued publication because the writing simply didn’t meet his high standards. Something was missing: a spark. Looking back, Manning prefers to believe that he was living out Malcolm Gladwell’s maxim: you’ve got to ply your craft for 10,000 hours before you get good. Yes, that would be the preferred belief.

In 2008, Manning experimented with writing a new type of fiction, and ended up with his first “kinging” novel, published in serial format on a free website. (The original novel has been removed from that site.) The intense reaction from hundreds of readers around the globe suggested to Manning that something had indeed changed, so he decided to create a new novel based off these wild, frothy characters.

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