Poppy’s Secret by Andrew Grey: Author Guest Post, Release Day Review, Excerpt and Giveaway

perf4.250x7.000.inddsynopsisA second chance born of love.

Pat Corrigan and Edgerton “Edge” Winters were ready to start a family—or so Pat thought. At the last minute, Edge got cold feet and fled. Pat didn’t bother telling him the conception had already gone through and little Emma was on her way. He didn’t want a relationship based on obligation. He’d rather raise his daughter on his own.

Nine years later, Emma and her Poppy are doing fine. Edge isn’t. He realizes what he threw away by leaving, and he’s back to turn his life around and reclaim his family. It’ll take a lot to prove to Pat that he’s a new man, and even if Edge succeeds, the secret Pat has hidden for years might shatter their dreams all over again.

Title: Poppy’s Secret
Author: Andrew Grey
Release date: February 15, 2017
Category: Contemporary, Dreamspun Desires
Pages: 90

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Guest Post

I am a romance junkie and a member of Romance Writers of America.  So each year I judge one of their contests and last year I judged a secret baby book.  I discovered something new.  To top it off a friend told me that she particularly loves secret baby books, so when she challenged me to come up with one, I rose to the challenge and Poppy’s Secret is the result.  Yes, my demented imagination came up with a scenario for an MM secret baby book.  It was fun to write and I hope it’s as much fun to read!!!!

Heather's Review

Poppy’s Secret by Andrew Grey is one of my first reads from the Dreamspun Desires line from Dreamspinner. Typically, I’m more of a fan of series, especially from authors like Andrew Grey. This is because I love the idea of getting to know a community of characters and see glimpses of previous couples in future books. If I was to say anything against Poppy’s Secret, it would be that I wish I’d get to see them again in the future, because I loved Edge and Pat.

This is a second chance story in every sense of the term. Pat and Edge were in love and planning a future. Then, Edge felt the weight of adult life weighing down on him and ran. Now, he’s back and hoping he can prove to Pat that he knows exactly how badly he screwed up. The problem is, life didn’t stop for Pat when Edge left and Pat moved forward with their plans to start a family even though he was doing it on his own.

As happens often in Andrew Grey’s books, little Miss Emma was as much of a main character as the men. The eight year old is now the center of Pat’s universe, and before he can let Edge in, he needs to know he’s not going to run again, hurting not only Pat, but also Emma. And he’s worried that when his secret is revealed, Edge will run.

I can’t tell you too much more than that, but I will say this story ended with a great case of the happy feels.

Definitely a great book to pick up when you need something with only a touch of angst and a great story.

4 pieces of eye candy

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excerpt

“I saw him yesterday,” Edge told his sister, Terry, when she called while he was waiting for his first coffee of the day. “I was at one of the clubs to have a good time. He was on his way out, and he literally ran into me.”

“Let me guess. He welcomed you back with open arms and said that he forgave you for being the biggest jackass of all time, and that now that you were back, the two of you could pick up right where things left off.” Terry could be the biggest smartass on the planet. “I told you then that you were being a jerk.”

“You were sixteen. Everyone was a jerk then.”

“Maybe,” Terry conceded. “But I was still right, and you know it. That job that started this whole thing was just an excuse because you were scared of all the things Pat wanted, and by the way, he has and you don’t. I still see him every now and then.”

“Does he talk to you?” Edge asked.

“Of course he does. I’m not the douche who left him. That was you. I’m just your sister, and that daughter of his is beautiful and wonderfully smart. I used to see them more than I do now that they moved.” She was taunting him—it was another of her skills.

“How come you know all this and I don’t?”

“Maybe because I still live in Harrisburg and you moved to Boston nine years ago and never looked back until everything went to shit and you decided to come home.”

Edge wanted to growl at her, but he couldn’t because she was right, no matter how much attitude she threw his way. “Can you knock it off for a few seconds at least?”

“Fine, but what fun is that? You still have feelings for the guy you ran out on years ago, probably when he needed you the most. Edge, I gotta tell you that if you did that to me, I’d probably tell you to fuck off too. I mean, it has been nine years, as I said. He has a life that doesn’t include you. What did you expect, that he’d spent the entire time you were gone wishing he had you back? Come on. You’re an interesting guy, but nobody waits around for someone that long.”

“Okay,” Edge sighed. “But it was good seeing him again. He looks good, and—”

“So you’re the one still carrying the torch. That’s priceless and pathetic. You were the guy who left, remember?” A cry rose behind her. “Look, I gotta go. Margie needs to be changed and fed, and I think you need to get over yourself and realize that the past is that past and that it’s probably best if it stays there. I know things fell apart, but you have a good job here, and you’re building a life again. You just need to realize that your life isn’t going to include Pat.”

That was harder than Edge thought it would be. He’d had nine years, and even after all the things he’d done and the places he’d been for his art, none of them had ever measured up to what he’d had with Pat. Edge knew he’d screwed up in a major way, though it had taken him months to realize it, and by then he knew it was way too damn late. “I know, but seeing him brought back all that stuff I thought I’d buried.”

“Nothing is ever buried for long. It always surfaces, and when it does you have to deal with it. Buried emotions are like those coffins that floated up in New Orleans during Katrina.”

“Thanks for that image. Now I’m going to see floating coffins.” He paused and closed his eyes as the images floated through his mind. “I’ll let you go.” His sister would need to get the kids ready for daycare.

andrew-grey-picmeet the author

Andrew grew up in western Michigan with a father who loved to tell stories and a mother who loved to read them. Since then he has lived throughout the country and traveled throughout the world. He has a master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and works in information systems for a large corporation.

Andrew’s hobbies include collecting antiques, gardening, and leaving his dirty dishes anywhere but in the sink (particularly when writing)  He considers himself blessed with an accepting family, fantastic friends, and the world’s most supportive and loving partner. Andrew currently lives in beautiful, historic Carlisle, Pennsylvania.

Author Links

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Twitter @andrewgreybooks

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Hard Wired by Megan Erickson & Santino Hassell: Release Day Blitz and Review

Hard Wired

Megan Erickson & Santino Hassell

Release Day Blitz

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Working It by Christine D’Abo: Blog Tour, Guest Post, and Giveway

working-itsynopsis

Nolan Carmichael is getting a fresh start—new career, new company, new life. The only problem is, he liked his old life just fine . . . until an accident robbed him of his health, his job, his self-confidence, and his ability to go out in public without having anxiety attacks.

Zack Anderson has scared away his last four executive assistants. So when he hires Nolan on a whim, he’s not too worried, since Nolan will be gone within the week anyway. Two weeks later, Nolan has made himself indispensable, completely reforming Zack’s schedule, life . . . and libido.

But in a company already torn by internal politics, one wrong step could ruin both their careers. And not only are they working to reopen Ringside Gym, Zack’s retreat when he was a troubled teen, but they also can’t help themselves falling for each other. If only the rest of their lives could go as smoothly as things do when they’re alone together.

Guest Post

Thank you for having me here today. I’m so happy to be able to talk to you about my new book, WORKING IT, which is book one in my new Ringside Romance series. Don’t let the series title fool you, this is low on the boxing and high on sexual tension.

As an avid reader of all things romance, I personally love it when authors take chances and play around with what we consider typical romance tropes. Those situations that for whatever reason, really work for us as lovers of romance. One of my personal favorite tropes is the whole boss-assistant dynamic. There’s something wonderful about the tension that can be created when two people are working together, under pressure and in close quarters, that appeals to me.

I wanted to take this trope and do something a little fun with it. What would happen if both the characters were gay? What if they were so vastly different that under any other circumstance they probably never meet, let alone fall in love? What if they worked day in and day out in an office together?

In WORKING IT, Nolan Carmichael is working through the trauma of a serious car accident. He gets a job as Zack Anderson’s executive assistant, a position that no one at the company wants. Somehow the two of them work through their differences and fall in love.

I hope you’ll come along for the ride.

You can visit Christine at her website www.christinedabo.com, and chat with her on Facebook and Twitter. Want to keep up with Christine’s new releases? Sign up for her newsletter and receive a free book!

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To celebrate the release of Working It, one lucky winner will receive a $25 Riptide Publishing credit! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on February 11, 2017. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!

meet the author

A romance novelist and short story writer, Christine has over thirty publications to her name. She loves to exercise and stops writing just long enough to keep her body in motion too. When she’s not pretending to be a ninja in her basement, she’s most likely spending time with her family and two dogs.

Connect with Christine:

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The Seventh Flower by Ingela Bohm: Guest Post, Release Day Review, includes Giveaway

The Seventh Flower_HIGHRESsynopsisChrister is too old to believe in fairy tales. He’s not the kind of guy to pick the proverbial seven flowers on Midsummer’s Eve so he can dream of who he will marry, and he certainly isn’t the type to fall for someone he’s just met. Especially not a womanizing blogger named Henrik.

Besides, Christer’s previous marriage didn’t end with a happily ever after. Therefore, he has no interest in gifting his heart to someone who lives five hundred miles away and probably isn’t even gay. His family is right: it’s time he grew up and stopped dreaming.

But Midsummer’s Eve in Sweden is a magical night, and Henrik won’t stop flirting. As the midnight sun shines down on the misty woods, maybe there’s room for one last dream.

World of Love: Stories of romance that span every corner of the globe.

Title: The Seventh Flower
Author: Ingela Bohm
Release Date: February 8, 2017
Category: Contemporary, Holiday
Pages: 76

Guest Post

Seven flowers

My new novella, The Seventh Flower, takes as its premise a local legend which says that if you pick seven flowers on Midsummer’s Eve and put them under your pillow, you’ll dream of the person you will marry. Cute, sure, but where I come from it can be a challenge to actually find seven flowers in June, because it’s so far north. That sounds like I live on the tundra or something, but it’s just that the winter is very long and the seeds don’t have that much time to grow.

That said, there are some beautiful specimens to be found if you know where to look. In The Seventh Flower, Christer and Henrik first stumble on the arctic starflower. It’s a little gem, its perfect petals looking like they’re cut out from white paper. You can walk right past them and never notice, but once you do, they’re everywhere. Like tiny stars, they dot the shadowy forest floor, and they never fail to make me smile.

A more visible flower is the beaked parsley that you can gather in masses if you want. It lines every country road, and I think it would take over the entire world if given half a chance. It’s not very luxurious as flowers go, but in the soft light of the midnight sun, shrouded in mist, it’s not bad at all.

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Then of course there’s the buttercup, which is such a pretty name when you think about it. I used to think they contained actual butter – probably one of my older siblings fooled me, because they always found that an exceptionally rewarding hobby. But when you look at the petals of a buttercup, they glisten in the sun and look almost oily, so it’s not that much of a stretch.

Cranesbill is another classic around here, and together with beaked parsley and buttercups it gives the Swedish summer its typical colors: white, yellow, and purple. Everywhere you look, in ditches and fields and hedgerows, you’ll see the same three colors: white, yellow, and purple. I sometimes think our flag should be those colors instead of yellow and blue.

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In fact the county flower of my region is the heartsease, or wild pansy, which is made up of those exact colors, so that’s really fitting.

The marsh marigold was another favorite of mine when I was little. It was such an unexpected flower where it bloomed at the very edge of the riverbanks, shining golden against the dark water. Compared to the other small and unassuming flowers that we got early in the summer, it had the allure of a rare treasure.

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So that makes six flowers that you can find in the north of Sweden in June, and perhaps Christer and Henrik will never find more than that. Maybe the woods where they celebrate Midsummer’s Eve are just too barren, just too cold to yield that seventh flower. After all, what can you hope for in a man you meet once, as a fluke? Not marriage, surely.

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meet the author

Goodreads photoIngela Bohm lives in an old cinema, tucked away in a northern Swedish forest where she can wander around all day long and dictate her books. She used to dream of being an actor until an actual actor asked, “Do you really need to do it?” That’s when she realized that the only thing she really needed to do was to write. She has since pretended to be a dietician, a teacher, a receptionist and a cook, but only to conceal her real identity.

Her first imaginary friend was called Grabolina and lived in her closet. Nowadays she has too many imaginary friends to count, but at least some of them are out of the closet. Her men may not be conventionally handsome, but they can charm your pants off, and that’s all that matters.

Ingela’s more useless talents include reading tarot cards, killing pot plants and drawing scandalous pictures that no one gets to see. She can’t walk in heels and she’s stopped trying, but she has cycled 12 000 miles in the UK and knows which campsites to avoid if you don’t like spiders. If you see her on the train you will wonder what age she is.

To get updates on Ingela Bohm’s work, please sign up for her newsletter or connect at her

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Books by Ingela Bohm

The Pax Cymrica series:

Just Playing

The Road Taken

Release

Cutting Edge

 

Standalone novels:

Rival Poet

Not Safe For Work

Last Communion

All You Can Eat

 

Short stories:

Seven Thousand Minutes

Strings Attached

The Subjunctive Mood

Beneath The Mask

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Do You Trust Me? by B.G. Thomas: Exclusive Guest Post, Excerpt, Review and Giveaway included

do you trust me

Guest Post

I would like to tell you a little bit about my new novel “Do You Trust Me?” And the fact that in some ways it isn’t new. And yet, it is….

Awhile back I had the opportunity to write a novella for Amber Quill Press called “Trust Me.” I got the idea to tell the story of the Black Bear Guest Ranch and the people who lived and worked there. It was a really wonderful experience. These characters, even secondary and tertiary, became so real to me. With feelings and passions and experances and more. I soon found myself wishing that I could stay at Black Bear. And in my mind I often do, especially when I go back a re-read that story.

There there were my romantic heroes. First there was Neil Baxter and his family and the characters that surrounded him. Family. Co-workers. He became so real to me. And I wanted my hero to represent a lot of gay men I’ve know in my life, and that is men who came out in life. Gay men who grew up in my generation found the pressures of a straight society made them try a live a straight life. To pretend not only to family and friends that they weren’t gay, but to convince themselves of that as well.

Let me tell you, it isn’t easy. But a gay man can come to hate himself, or at least the gay part of him. We can convince ourselves such things as that gay part is a demon that possesses us. Or that love is love and as long as we are in love, it doesn’t matter if that person is a man or a woman. And if it doesn’t matter, then why not be with a woman? And as humans, we love men and women. So it doesn’t take a lot to convince ourselves that the love with feel for a woman is more than it is. And then we get married and have kids and we don’t want to hurt them. And we stay—and convince ourselves that being gay isn’t a vital part of who we are. We say stuff like, “I don’t want to be labeled.” We armor ourselves with such stuff as “God hates the sin but loves the sinner.” And some of us pray and pray and pray, begging God to make us straight. It is amazing how we can convince even ourselves….

That is part of what this story is about. How a man can come out so late in life.

Then there is Cole Thompson. Now there is a man I wished I had been. A man who knew from day one who he was. A man who chose not to lie to himself or anyone else. And a man who overcame some pretty rough situations in his life to be out and proud.

I overnight came to be passionate about these passionate men. To feel for them and to love them and to have them speak to me through my heart.

And then there was a blow. I had to stop writing before the story was over. The publisher was only accepting novellas. They had that right. And I picked a story that couldn’t be told in the word count they were allowing. But I was a new writer at the time and so I wrapped the story up. I ended it before I really wanted to. And it’s a good story. I like it. A lot of readers did. And I am grateful to Amber Quill for the chance to tell my story.

But then something magical happened. I got a chance not many people do. I got a chance to expand my novella into the novel I always wanted it to be. I was able to put more heart and more passion into the story. Re-writing and updating that story was powerful and wonderful! And I think Dreamspinner Press for giving me that opportunity.

Now here is something else you may or may not know. A lot of writers “cast” their characters. Especially those of us who can’t draw. I envy those who can draw from their heads what their characters look like. So, I am going to do something! I am going to share with you some pictures of how I see what my beloved characters look like. Those pictures allowed me to write with even more passion. Just to let you know, the inspiration for Neil was Christophe Dominici, a French rugby player. Cole was inspired by Cain, an adult actor for Corbin Fisher studios.

Others include Amy Adams as Amy Radcliff, Neil’s sister-in-law. Charlie Koontz as Leo Carmichael, the young wrangler who has a crush on Cole. And Ann Haney and Bill Nighy as Darla and Vincent Clark, the owners of Black Bear Guest Ranch.

And on that note, here is the blurb for “Do You Trust Me?” I hope it intrigues you!

synopsis

The path to happiness starts with acceptance, and sometimes the chance for a bright, loving future means letting go of the past.

All his life, Neil Baxter has buried a large part of himself—the part that’s attracted to other men. He married a woman and denied that side of him existed. And he plans to keep right on pretending to be straight after his beloved wife has passed away.

To help him deal with his grief, Neil’s sister-in-law convinces him to vacation at a dude ranch. There, Neil meets Cole Thompson, a young, gorgeous, unabashedly gay wrangler—who is unabashedly attracted to Neil. And try as he might, Neil cannot deny he feels the same way. But desire soon becomes something more profound as the two men get to know each other. Cole is much more than a sexy cowboy: he’s kind, spiritual, and intelligent. In fact, he’s perfect for Neil… except he’s a man, and Neil isn’t ready to let go of a lifetime of denial. If he cannot find the courage to be true to himself, he might let something wonderful slip through his fingers.

First Edition published as Trust Me by Amber Quill Press, 2011.

Title: Do You Trust Me?
Author: B.G. Thomas
Release Date: February 3, 2017
Category: Contemporary
Pages: 200

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excerpt

After the talent show, I hung back a bit with Amy. And hell, keeping her company was what I was supposed to be doing in the first place. We had coffee.

“I miss him, Neil,” she said, looking around the room. “He’d have had so much fun tonight.”

There was no reason for me to ask who “he” was. Owen. Her husband. Her dead husband.

She went silent.

Then she talked about the first time they came to Black Bear Guest Ranch. Owen was a huge Western fan—had read the books by Louis L’Amour, Zane Grey, and Max Brand since he was a kid. He loved the movies, too, and had infected both their children.

She looked at me, her eyes coming back to the present. Sighed. She smiled, but I could tell it was forced. “This just might be the very last year,” she said. She shrugged. “I don’t know if I’ll want to come back after I say….” Her voice faded again. “Good-bye.”

It didn’t take long after that for her to decide she was ready to turn in.

“Want me to walk you?” I asked as we stepped out onto the porch.Cole Thompson [DYTM]

She shook her head. “No. I think I want a few minutes to be alone before facing the kids.” She kissed my cheek, thanked me for coming, and headed into the night.

Unexpectedly, I found Cole and Leo and it looked like they were passing a flask. I cleared my throat, and they spun, obviously surprised at being caught.

“Good night, Leo,” Cole said.

Leo looked at Cole, me, then back at Cole.

Oh, for goodness sake, I thought, recognizing Leo’s expression almost instantly. Women had been giving Cole that very same look all evening.

Shit. Leo, too? Did everyone love Cole?

“Go on,” Cole said.

The shorter boy looked stricken and turned to me, nodded, then ran then off into the night.

“Did I interrupt something?” I asked.

Cole shrugged. “He’s got a crush on me.”

I felt my stomach clench. “Maybe I should’ve been the one to get lost,” I said, trying to be causal. Had I stopped some homosexual liaison?

Cole shook his head. “He’s not my type…. Too young.”

“How old is he?” Eighteen, maybe? Was Cole giving liquor to a minor?

“He’s twenty-one,” Cole answered.

“He is?” I was surprised. “He sure doesn’t look it.”

“Nope, and that’s the problem. He’s a nice guy. He’ll make some guy a great lover one day. But I can’t be attracted to someone who I’m not attracted to, you know?”

“I imagine you’d like someone a little closer to your age?”

“I like older men,” Cole said and looked away.

Older men? How old? Older as in…. My stomach fluttered, and I refused to let my thoughts go where his words threatened to take me. I needed to change the subject. Fast.

“You were good in there,” I told him referring to his singing and guitar playing in the talent show. After all, it was true.

He looked at me, those dark eyes all but lost in the shadows of the porch. “Thanks.”

“You’re welcome.”

We stood there for a minute, neither of us saying anything.Neil Baxter 2 [DYTM]

I need to get to my cabin. I need to get out of here.

Now.

Cabin. Sleep. But, hell, I was going to be up for hours. I could feel the caffeine zinging through me like electricity.

Cole looked away again, started to take a drink from his flask, then stopped. “Want some?”

“What is it?” I asked.

“Does it matter?” he replied and laughed.

I shrugged. “I guess not.” Hell, I thought, it might help me sleep. I reached for the flask, and when he handed it to me, our fingers touched for a second.

I almost jumped.

It was like one of those static zings that happens when you rub your stockinged feet on a carpet and then touch something metal. But that wasn’t what happened. There hadn’t been a static discharge. It had all been in my imagination. In my head.

But then when he looked at me the way he did, shadows or not, I wondered if that was true.

I paused for a moment before drinking. I looked at Cole. Beautiful Cole.

Beautiful?

I trembled. Geez. Yes. He was beautiful.

I looked into Cole’s eyes and suddenly realized I had been pretty hateful. I was being just as bad as they were. Gay or not, Cole had shown me nothing but kindness.

“Do you trust me?” he’d asked when I rode Mystic, my horse for the week. When he’d told me that Mystic trusted me.

Agree with what he’d decided to do with his life or not, he’d done nothing but been trustworthy.

I took a swig from the flask, knowing those lips had touched it before mine, and felt the burn. “Whiskey.” I handed it back.

Good Kentucky whiskey,” he said, then took a drink. He held it out.

I took the flask and, once again, our fingers touched. He didn’t let go for a second, letting the contact linger. I didn’t pull away, and my heart began to race.

He was flirting again.

Dammit!Leo Carmichael [DYTM]

Why me?

He let go, and I took a long swallow this time. Too long. Shit. “I think I finished it,” I said. “I’m sorry.”

“I got plenty back at my cabin,” he said. “Don’t worry about it.”

Was that an invitation?

Damn, he was so good-looking! Hell! How could a man be so damned good-looking? He was a man! Why was I seeing it? Weren’t there plenty of nice-looking women around here? Why couldn’t I think of one single attractive woman? Out of thirty-some people, there had to be one. Besides Amy, that was. Amy was family. Amy was my “sister.”

Again, we just stood there, and I felt the heat in my face as I went all flush.

Go to bed! my mind screamed at me. Get out of here!

But why couldn’t I move?

“My flask?” he asked.

“Sorry,” I said, feeling like an idiot. I handed it to him. “I need to be getting to bed. I’m worn out….”

I paused.

Remembered.

I looked at Cole again, but this time I could think of something besides how attractive he was. I remembered the amazing afternoon astride that incredible horse. How free I’d felt. How spellbinding. “Thank you for that.”

“For what?” Cole said.

“Mystic. It was magical.”Vincent Clark [DYTM] Darla Clark [DYTM]

He smiled, and my stomach leapt again.

Run!

“No problem,” he said. “There’ll be plenty more tomorrow. You rest up. I’ll see you in the morning.”

“Morning” was all I could say back.

I watched him go.

And finally I climbed into my little cart and drove back to my cabin.

michelle review

The path to happiness starts with acceptance, and sometimes the chance for a bright, loving future means letting go of the past.

Neil is widowed and is so far in the closet there is no light seeping in from under the door. He lost his wife suddenly 2 yrs prior, leaving him with his teenage daughter. He is invited to a dude ranch with his sister-in-law and her family for a weeks’ vacation.

There he meets one of the wranglers, Cole, who at first sight makes Neil question everything he was told not to want. Neil finds an easy friendship with Cole but as they get closer he pulls away and becomes angry at himself for letting himself think of Cole as more than just a friend. Cole is out & proud but is still dealing with a horrible breakup.

We get to watch as Neil questions what he needs in his life to be happy and if he can truly be himself and happy with Cole. There is a nice age gap between the MCs and I never once felt Cole to be immature at his young age.

The writing was great, the character development was superb, and the story flowed with ease. I was completely in love with this story up until about 70%.   There was circumstances that I felt needed to be dealt better with the situation Neil and Cole were in. Unfortunately, that little hiccup (which might not bother others) completely took me out of the rest of the story. I read it until the end but the deep seeded investment I had in the book went out the window and I couldn’t seem to get my reading mojo back on.

I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a complex story about a man trying to find himself. What didn’t work for me might not be a problem for others. I look forward to reading more by this author.

3.5 pieces of eye candy

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meet the author

cowboy Noah's editB.G. Thomas lives in Kansas City with his husband of more than a decade and their fabulous dogs Sarah Jane and Oliver. He is blessed to have a lovely daughter as well as many extraordinary friends. He has a great passion for life.

B.G. loves romance, comedies, fantasy, science fiction, and even horror—as far as he is concerned, as long as the stories are character driven and entertaining, it doesn’t matter the genre. He has gone to literature conventions his entire adult life where he’s been lucky enough to meet many of his favorite writers. He has made up stories since he was a child; it is where he finds his joy.

In the nineties, he wrote for gay adult magazines but stopped because the editors wanted all sex without plot. “The sex is never as important as the characters,” he says. “Who cares what they are doing if we don’t care about them?” Excited about the growing male/male romance market, he began writing again. He submitted a novella and was thrilled when it was accepted in four days. Since then the romantic tales have poured out of him. “It’s like I’m somehow making up for a lifetime’s worth of story-telling!”

“Leap, and the net will appear” is his personal philosophy and his message. “It is never too late,” he testifies. “Pursue your dreams. They will come true!”

Website/blog: bthomaswriter.wordpress.com

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Thick & Thin by Charlie Cochet: Release Day Review includes Giveaway

thick-and-thinsynopsisIn a matter of days, Dex has been kidnapped, tortured, killed, revived, become half Therian, offered the chance to become a spy, and accepted a proposal to marry his jaguar Therian boyfriend, Sloane Brodie. It’s been a lot to take in, and although Dex is still trying to wrap his head around everything that’s happened, he knows he has to move forward.

After the events of Smoke & Mirrors, Dex and Sloane find themselves in one of the most frightening situations of all: revealing the truth to their Destructive Delta family. When the dust settles, nothing will ever be the same, and it’s up to Dex to prove that in the face of change, the one thing that will always remain the same is family.

Title: Thick & Thin
Series: THIRDS: Book Eight
Author: Charlie Cochet
Release Date: February 1, 2017
Category: Mystery/Suspense; Paranormal: Werewolves/Shifters, Science Fiction, Urban Fantasy
Pages: 95

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denise review

Every time I read something by Charlie Cochet, I am so impressed. She continues to amaze me with the depth she adds to all her work, whether its a THIRDS novella or her holiday series. Thick & Thin is no exception. It isn’t just the depth of the characters or emotions that are so impressive. The depth of the stories are so multi-leveled that although these COULD be read as stand alone, a reader would miss so much of the setup for future, from beginning to end.

To start Hell & High Water with Dex, and learning quickly in that book that his parents were killed in the riots, when he was only 5 years old, to then come full circle to Thick & Thin, and get a better understanding of what actually happened takes planning, plotting and more planning. In book 2, you see set up that comes to fruition several books later, and so on.

With Thick & Thin, Charlie takes a short novella, packs a super punch, leaves the reader hanging (only slightly), and wanting more of what is ahead for the entire family of Destructive Delta. In addition, this was a necessary component to the series. Although people have been dying for the next book, this was needed to prepare the reader for what was coming. Her completion of one or two story arcs, in a 95 page novella, and setup for Seb and Hudson’s book is such a great balance of loving what you’re reading, and wanting what is ahead.

Sometimes in a book series with so many books, the reader can get bored, and move on, yet there is absolutely no chance this reader (or most) is moving on, and the second I get my hands on book 9, I will be hiding away from the world so that I can soak up every word of it.

Not a single spoiler! You NEED to read this! That is all. 🙂

4.5 pieces of eye candy

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Inheritance by Sean Michael: Release Day Review

inheritamcesynopsis

Cash McCord’s life is pretty much perfect. He owns the family ranch, loves his work, and invites the occasional cowboy into his bed. But everything is turned upside down when his brother Jack and Jack’s wife Val are killed in a car crash, leaving behind six kids.

Cash is made guardian of the children, along with Val’s brother, Brad Rafferty—a man who couldn’t be more different from Cash if he tried. A Yankee, Brad is a video-game developer who works twelve-to-fourteen-hour days at his desk. They lock horns as soon as they set eyes on each other. Neither man is happy to have the other around, but neither is willing to give up custody of his nieces and nephews.

It’s up to these two polar opposites to keep the kids together and give them a family again. But first they’ll have to keep from killing each other.

First Edition published as Inheritance in Family Matters by Torquere Press, 2008.
Second Edition published by Torquere Press, 2013.

Title: Inheritance
Author: Sean Michael
Release Date: February 1, 2017
Category: Contemporary
Pages: 80

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jennifer

Ok, so I’m pretty sure Cash is the one who lost his brother Jack and Brad lost his sister Val. I kept getting who was related to whom mixed up, but by the end, I think that was it…So, both passed away in a car accident and left six children behind. I couldn’t imagine, how sad. Fortunately, they both had brothers who they wanted to care for them. They were as opposite as night and day, but it was what their siblings wanted and they didn’t want to be without the kids, so they saddled up and dealt with it as best they could. Sure… it went to blows once or twice and they fought about it quite a bit. Cash wanting to go back to his land, his farm and continue his life and Brad wanted to stay in the home the kids’ parents left to them.

Then, in the midst of arguing and fighting about where to live and when to go, they start hookin up…. Literally every few pages is hot steamy time and I’ll admit, I did start to skim after a bit….which is rare to me, because the steamy part is the best, right? I couldn’t get over the dialogue though… All the “buddies” and the “man”. I’d never call someone buddy in the middle of sex lol, maybe cuz I’m a Midwestern?? I’m not sure… It just never clicked with me though…

Once the guys finally got a routine going, Brad’s mom shows up and makes trouble. Then she makes a lot of trouble and she’s just a nasty, terrible person. Prejudice because she doesn’t feel like 2 men should raise a family and off pouting because she didn’t get asked to be the one to raise the kids, in the will….She’s just a bitter ol’ nasty woman and I was glad that in the end they took the kids away to the farm and got her out of their life. At least, that’s what I hope happened because kids being around someone like that, learning that terrible behavior…. I’da hated that for them, because they all loved their uncle’s Cash and Brad. They were good for them.

I would have liked to have seen the Granny get a little karmatic justice, but meh…. I was content with the way the things ended and of course, I love me a HEA… and everyone ended up happy and healthy and together. Can’t ask for more than that, can we?

Overall, a pretty good read…the only problems I had were my own personal preferences…they in no way took away from this story at all in any other way…Sean Michael has a knack for writing mannies and stories with kids. Can’t wait to read more!

4 pieces of eye candy for me.

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deanna review

Great story, it pulled me in from the beginning and I read it in one sitting.

Cash and Brad inherit custody of their 6 young nieces and nephews when their parents are killed in a car accident. The only stipulation to the will is that Cash and Brad raise the kids together. Cash is a rancher from Texas and Brad is a video game developer, they really don’t have a lot in common except for the kids.

Brad and Cash fumble along trying to keep the kid’s lives as normal as possible while trying to get to know each other and figure out what the future holds. Cash wants to move everyone to his ranch in Texas. Brad balks at the idea at first not wanting to uproot the kids from the only place they’ve ever know. As Cash and Brad get to know each other better they begin to build the foundation for what they hope will be a relationship that far outlasts the raising of children.

Brad’s mother tries to interfere with how he and Cash are raising the kids and Brad starts to rethink Texas. Just maybe a new start on a sprawling ranch is just what everyone needs.

This was a great read, the story was just deep enough to feel for all the characters without getting lost in the grief that might have overshadowed the story. At some points the scenes were chaotic but raising six kids will be like that and made it seem authentic.

The one strange point for me was that Brad’s sister had me been married to Cash’s brother for well over 13 years yet neither Brad nor Cash knew the other was gay. How is that possible?

The unexpected villain was grandmommy dearest. I was expecting a more climactic conclusion to the storyline. I didn’t think she would have given up where her character did in the story. I kept waiting for her to pop back up in Texas.

Overall, a very entertaining read but then again Sean Michael’s books usually are.

3.5 pieces of eye candy

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Sight Unseen by Susan Mac Nicol with Nicholas Downs: Release Day Blitz and Review

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Sometimes we don’t see love coming

Based on an idea from L.A. producer and actor, Nicholas Downs, Susan and Nicholas have developed a story straight from the heart.

In a gripping tale of lovers fighting against the odds comes a story of universal appeal about rejection and acceptance and finally finding what is real and true.

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synopsis

Tragedy brings together a reserved but brilliant sculptor and an outgoing gallery owner, friends whose love was sidetracked but was always meant to be deeper.

BLINDSIDED

SoCal natives, Nate and Cody have been friends since childhood. Both knew they were different—and the same. At seventeen, a stolen weekend in the Florida Keys drove their connection deeper and hotter than either could imagine. They were meant to be together. Then, for reasons only Nate knows, suddenly they weren’t.

They’re still friends. Best friends. But they’ve moved on and found other partners. The yearning remains, however, despite the long-ago secret that drove them apart, when tragedy strikes, both men find themselves in the dark. They must grope their way back to who and what they are…which they will find in each other’s arms. Sometimes, losing one’s sight can open one’s eyes—and heart.

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Click “want to read” and add to your TBR shelf

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BOOK TRAILER

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6sNjNYnBUq0

Heather's Review

From the moment you start reading Sight Unseen, you know it’s not going to be a fluffy story. It’s heartbreaking to see Nate in the moments after his life is forever changed. As if that isn’t enough, the man who should’ve been there for him…isn’t.

Luckily, Nate has Cody. Cody is the best friend who refuses to let Nate give up– on his passion or on himself. At times, he pushes too hard, but it’s because he loves Nate and knows he won’t be happy if he’s still missing a huge chunk of his life.

This is not a steamy, sexy read. It’s a love story. A beautiful, if at times painful, story of two men who love one another falling in love with each other. It’s definitely in the re-read folder on my Kindle!

4.5 pieces of eye candy

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SIGNING NEWS

Author Susan Mac Nicol is going to the States.

Would you love to meet International Bestselling Author Susan Mac Nicol & L.A. producer and Hollywood Actor Nicholas Downs? Now is your chance!!

It’s a dream come true for Sue and she’s honoured to be signing Sight Unseen with Boroughs Publishing Group and actor Nicholas Downs at this conference from 25-26th March.

If you’re interested in attending this signing, either as an author or a reader, here is the link.

https://caldreaminwriters.com/

The 2017 conference will be at : Embassy Suites in Brea, California.

Address: 900 E Birch St, Brea, CA 92821

There will also be a very special signing event at The Abbey, an iconic gay club in West Hollywood. Nicholas and Sue will be there to enjoy the evening, meet fans of both their genres in film and publishing and be available to sign books, chat and have some fun. If you’re in the area, please pop down and see them, they’d no doubt love to see you.

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This is the room they’ll be signing in, isn’t it fabulous. It’s the Cabana Bar.

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CONNECT WITH SUSAN & NICHOLAS

nick-and-sue

Twitter: @SightUnseenPR

Instagram: @sightunseenla

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/Sight-Unseen-The-Project-1547502492221078/

Susan

www.susanmacnicol.net

Nicholas

www.nicholasdowns.com

Susan Mac Nicol Author Page
https://www.facebook.com/authorsusanmacnicol/

Nicholas Downs Fan Page
https://www.facebook.com/Nicholas-Downs-97159977384/

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Fire and Hail by Andrew Grey: Release Day Review

firesynopsis

Carlisle Cops: Book Five

Brock Ferguson knew he might run into his ex-boyfriend, Vincent Geraldini, when he took his first job as a police officer in Carlisle. Vincent’s attitude during a routine traffic stop reminds Brock why their relationship didn’t last.

What Brock doesn’t expect is finding two scared children in the trunk of a Corvette. He’s also surprised to learn the kids’ mother is Vincent’s sister. But his immediate concern is the safety of the two children, Abey and Penny, and he offers to comfort and care for them when their mother is taken into custody.

Vincent is also shocked to learn what his sister has done. For the sake of the kids, he and Brock bury the hatchet—and soon find they have much more in common than they realized. With Abey and Penny’s help, they grow closer, until the four of them start to feel like a family. But Vincent’s sister and her boyfriend—an equal-opportunity jerk—could tear down everything they’re trying to build.

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jennifer

First, I have to say that I’m in love with this series and I really thought it would be impossible to top Donald and Carter’s story with little Alex; it was just as amazing though. I loved Brock and Vinny although Vinny was a little harder for me to get to know in the beginning…. Let’s break it down…..

Brock is a new Carslile police officer, we first see him doing traffic patrol when we start his story. It’s a pretty boring day even though he had to stop an ex that had broken his heart one summer in college. Cut to another call at the end of his shift, he sees the ex’s sister who has done something terrible…. Locked her kids in the trunk of her car while she takes a joyride in a fancy convertible with her friend. Obviously, she’s not mentally stable. Brock is the one who finds them first and they trust him, making it next to impossible for the softhearted Brock to leave them when they have to call Donald at protective services.

Turns out, Vinny hasn’t seen his nephew Abey since he was a tiny baby and has never met his niece Penny and as secretive and guarded as Vinny was when Brock knew him; he was completely different when it came to those kids. He done everything in his power to protect them from his sister and the dangerous people in her life, and there were quite a few, including one of Brock’s exes. I thought that that was a little far-fetched, who he ended up being to Abey and Penny and who he was to Brock…. Small world I guess….

As a mother myself, I couldn’t believe how selfish and self-centered the kids’ mother was and for that reason, I just couldn’t see her ever redeeming herself. The kids were much better off without her and Brock and Vinny loved them so much, even from the very beginning.

It was a long, tedious fight but everything worked out in the best way possible in the end and I loved getting to catch up with the rest of the crew, even seeing Terry and Red…. I was so happy for Terry!!! I’m so glad we, as readers got that.

Overall, this story was just another great addition to an already amazing series. I can’t wait to read more… perhaps the new guy that was briefly mentioned coming to work for Vinny? Ya just never know, but I’m really looking forward to finding out!

5 pieces of eye candy for me!

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This post may contain affiliate links. Advanced Reader Copies are accepted by Two Chicks Obsessed in exchange for an honest review without additional compensation.

Off Base by Annabeth Albert: Release Day Blitz, Excerpt, Review and Giveaway

TitleOff Base

Series: Out of Uniform #1

Author: Annabeth Albert

Publisher:  Carina Press

Release Date: January 9th 2017

Heat Level: 4 – Lots of Sex

Pairing: Male/Male

Length: 73,000

Genre: Romance, Military, SEALs, Contemporary, Roommates-to-lovers

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synopsis

After trading the barracks for a fixer-upper rental, navy SEAL Zack Nelson wants peace, not a roommate—especially not Pike, who sees things about Zack he most wants to hide. Pike’s flirting puts virgin Zack on edge. And the questions Pike’s arrival would spark from Zack’s teammates about his own sexuality? Nope. Not going there. But Zack can’t refuse.

Pike Reynolds knows there won’t be a warm welcome in his new home. What can he say? He’s an acquired taste. But he needs this chance to get his life together. Also, teasing the uptight SEAL will be hella fun. Still, Pike has to tread carefully; he’s had his fill of tourists in the past, and he can’t risk his heart on another, not even one as hot, as built—and, okay, yeah, as adorable—as Zack.

Living with Pike crumbles Zack’s restraint and fuels his curiosity. He discovers how well they fit together in bed…in the shower…in the hallway… He needs Pike more than he could have imagined, yet he doesn’t know how to be the man Pike deserves.

Book One of the Out of Uniform series

This book is approximately 73,000 words

One-click with confidence. This title is part of the Carina Press Romance Promise: all the romance you’re looking for with an HEA/HFN. It’s a promise! Find out more at CarinaPress.com/RomancePromise

excerpt

“What do you mean they’re not coming?” Zack tried hard to sound like the badass navy SEAL he was now. He’d passed all sorts of interrogation training—there was no reason he couldn’t hide that he didn’t particularly like this guy. Or this fancy bar where he and his nontrendy clothes and military haircut were out of place. He’d agreed to go out for drinks with a group. His friend Ryan had promised him a drink for finishing his SEAL qualification training and getting his trident, and Zack had figured dealing with the rest of Ryan’s crowd wouldn’t be horrible. But tolerable was a far cry from being stranded alone with Pike freaking Reynolds without Ryan as a buffer.

“They blew two tires getting out of Santa Monica and are waiting on a repair truck now. Ryan said to have fun without them.” Pike looked harmless enough—shorter than Zack with a lean build and bright red hair and freckles that made him look too young to drink—but Zack knew from experience he was anything but benign. Pike was the type of guy who would flirt with wallpaper, but he seemed to have singled Zack out for special attention ever since their first meeting at a LAN party.

Which was all well and good, but unlike a lot of Ryan’s crowd, Zack wasn’t openly gay. And what Zack hated was that Pike seemed to see through all his “no, really I’m straight” protests and see things Zack refused to even think about. And a whole night with Pike? Torture. And that was coming from someone who’d been tossed into frigid water with his arms and legs bound. Repeatedly.

But he’d happily endure another round of drownproof training if it meant an easy out of this situation.

“Is Landon coming?” Please say it’s not just us. Surely, Pike’s omnipresent sidekick would be there to bail Zack out.

“Nope. He’s doing research at the Hadron Collider for the next few months. Just us, I think.” Pike grinned at him. “Alone at last, right?”

Zack guessed that the Hadron was one of those supersmart things Pike’s crowd just assumed everyone else knew about. He certainly wasn’t about to appear dumb and ask. “You don’t have to stick around on my account,” he said instead.

“Dude.” Pike smacked him on the shoulder. “I’ve had a shit week. Another three interviews for jobs for the fall, another three fuckups on my part. Don’t make me drink alone.”

“I guess I could do a beer.”

“On me, right? We’re all super stoked that you passed SQT.” Pike gave him another of those disarming smiles.

Ba-deep-deep. Zack’s phone chimed. Sure enough, there was a message from Ryan apologizing for bailing. Have fun with Pike, Ryan ended. But whatever you do, don’t let him talk you into shots. He looks scrawny, but he can drink you under the table. Trust me.

Zack shoved his phone away. Nope, no way was he doing shots with Pike. Last thing he needed was to get drunk and forget himself around the guy.

“So what’ll it be? They have a whole selection of craft beers here.” Pike offered him one of the little bar menus artfully strewn around on the huge antique wood bar.

“A Bud’s fine,” Zack said. He’d never developed a taste for the fancy stuff. This whole place was fancier than he was used to, what with the exposed hardwoods everywhere, the prettified bar food emerging from the kitchen, and the painted inspirational quotes behind the bar. Even the name, Mellow, was a far cry from the hole-in-the-wall places he’d drunk at in college or even Big Ted’s, the little sports bar right off base that his fellow SEALs favored.

Pike signaled the burly bartender, who frowned at them after Pike gave their order for a Bud and some fancy-ass beer Zack had never heard of. “Hand stamps, please. Both of you.”

Zack stuck his hand out, showing that the bouncer had indeed checked his ID. Pike put his arm right next to Zack’s—way too close for comfort. “See, look at us, finding things in common.”

“Getting carded is hardly something to be proud of,” Zack mumbled as he pulled his arm away. Back in San Diego, when he went to the bars with his friends, they never got carded anymore. And he liked that—he was twenty-three now, for crying out loud.

“Of course it’s not for you, Muscles.” Pike did that whole standing-too-close thing again, moving over so others could get to the bar.

Zack really shouldn’t like that Pike noticed what the past few months of training had done for his physique. He’d always been lean, but days of log- and boat-carry drills had carved out muscles he hadn’t even been aware he had. Zack accepted his beer from the bartender, then followed Pike to one of the little high-top tables ringing the bar area.

“Seriously, you are jacked now.” Pike winked at him, giving him the sort of once-over Zack’s buddies gave girls in bikinis. “Look at those shoulders. It even makes you look taller.”

Flattery was not going to work on Zack. Not even a bit. Besides, Pike was the short one, probably five seven or so. But Zack was a perfectly respectable five ten. In your boots.

“Truth, man. I just call it like I see it.” Pike shrugged. And that right there was the whole problem with Pike—he had absolutely no filter and a way too keen sense of observation.

Heather's Review

My list of auto-buy authors is short. As in, you could probably count them on two hands and have some fingers left over. But right near the top of that list is Annabeth Albert. Seriously, the same woman whose characters I first met in a series about reality television then made me fall in love with a bunch of gamers, even though I hate video games. And now, she’s taken another turn, getting me to fall in love with a Navy SEAL and his math geek boyfriend in Off Base.

What worked:
Zack. This man’s got enough issues to fill an aircraft carrier. If it’d been any other author, I’d have been nervous that it was overkill. But it all worked! Sure, DADT is a thing of the past, but that doesn’t mean everyone’s comfortable being out. And yeah, we live in a more accepting world than we had years ago, but that doesn’t mean every family is going to openly accept their children for who they are. Combine all the aspects of Zack’s life and you have one big, sloppy, denial sandwich.

Pike. Who better to win over a man who won’t even admit that he’s gay than an out and proud, take no prisoners gay man? The best part about Pike is I never felt icky. You know, that feeling you get when you’re reading and the openly gay guy is pushing too hard to get the man of his dreams to admit his feelings? Yeah, that’s not Pike. In fact, I was impressed that he was the one putting on the brakes at times.

The chemistry. In and out of the bedroom, Zack and Pike had chemistry in spades! And unlike some of Annabeth Alberts’s stories, which are sweet with a pinch of spice, this one definitely turned up the heat! Don’t get me wrong, stories can work both ways and it’s a testament to her talent to know which stories need what level of heat.

The tension. At no point did it feel easy for either character. They didn’t throw their own issues to the side for the sake of an easy story. They truly met in the middle to decide whether or not they were going to take the next step.

What didn’t work:
Nothing. There wasn’t a single thing in this story that didn’t work for me. It’s not often that I can say that, but this is one of those cases. Seriously, this is an instant-buy, re-read, love it for life type of book! I may already be trying to figure out how to hack computers so I can get an early copy of the sequel!

5 mother effing stars!!!

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meet the author

annabeth-avatar

Annabeth Albert grew up sneaking romance novels under the bed covers. Now, she devours all subgenres of romance out in the open—no flashlights required! When she’s not adding to her keeper shelf, she’s a multi-published Pacific Northwest romance writer.
Emotionally complex, sexy, and funny stories are her favorites both to read and to write. Annabeth loves finding happy endings for a variety of pairings and is a passionate gay rights supporter. In between searching out dark heroes to redeem, she works a rewarding day job and wrangles two children.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Annabeth’s Angels | Sign Up for Annabeth’s Newsletter!

 

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