GRL 2016 Featured Blog Post: Nicole Dennis Featured Author

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TCO is very excited to have our first Featured Author on the Official GRL Blog Tour. Thank you so much to Nicole Dennis for joining us today! Can’t wait to see you in October. 🙂

 

Balancing Reality with Fantasy

On the Road to GRL 2016

Nicole Dennis

Hello, I’m Nicole Dennis and thank you to Two Chicks Obsessed for being one of the wonderful Feature Bloggers for GRL 2016. This is my 4th GRL and for the first time, I’m a Featured Author. I get to enjoy a few more responsibilities in between the fun parts of the conference. It kind of reminds me of being stuck at the day job when all I wish to do is stay in the fantasy world of writing.

Like many authors, I have to figure out how to balance working a full-time job at a small CPA firm and going home to another full-time job as a writer. Unlike most corporate America, the firm is very low-key, on the quiet side when we’re not in the crazy main tax season from January to April, and quiet. My little corner is in the far back of the office, stuck amongst boxes of files, processing area and the kitchen. I’m able to keep my netbook on one side of the desk, iTunes playing on the latest mix I selected, and a Scrivener window up with the latest WIP.

Throughout the crazier parts of tax season, it’s very rare for me to do anything but process tax returns. I’m so tired and brain-dead by the e13336139_1336128883083166_45336646100486498_nnd of the day, I go home and veg. Sometimes I’m able to get some writing done, but most of the times my creative side is hidden under exhaustion and stress. The balancing act is tipped strong on the reality side.

After tax season, the balancing act shifts back to fantasy. With the work finished, often spread out throughout the work day, I’m able to concentrate on whatever WIP is calling my attention. My bosses don’t mind as long as I pay attention to whatever work they drop in front of me. Most of them are truly intrigued at my writing since they’re all entrenched deep in the linear, analytical side of their left brains. While I prefer to stay on the creative right side – yeah, did I mention I have a tendency to flip numbers around in columns and never see the mistake? A tad issue when you work for CPAs.

When I get home during after tax season, my stress-level is less, never gone completely, but the desire to create rides higher. With only Fat Cat keeping me company, I’m able to indulge and spend many hours on my laptop, lost in a story. Yeah, I admit to letting the dishes and laundry pile up while I tap away on the keyboard. Fat Cat don’t mind as long as her precious kibble drops from her feeder, her water tower remains full, and her automatic CatGenie litter box remains clean for her next visit. Simple kitteh needs. It is here that I’m the happiest.

I’ve known for a while I don’t belong in corporate America. I have a strong introvert nature with additions of a hyper-sensitive nature, depression and social anxiety. Yeah, it’s an insane mix of problems I’m constantly juggling to keep getting up and going every single day. Ideally, I would love to become a full-time author and be able to hide in my writing cave with Fat Cat to keep me company. Until my writing consistently covers the price of everyday living, I know the dream will have to remain just that.

So, the balancing act continues.

My latest release is Whatever It Takes with MLR Press.

 

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synopsis

At a crossroads in lifWHATEV-2e, one man will do whatever he must to rekindle the spark.

It takes an eye-opening talk for Riley Gordan to realize there’s something wrong in his twelve-year relationship with Conor Flemming. He creates extravagant events for same-sex proposals and weddings to over-the-top holiday parties, but he never considered one for Conor and him. Busier than ever, he realized his time with Conor had shrunk. He decides to use his event planning skills and put them to work to rekindle the spark.

Conor Flemming creates extraordinary cakes for anything from a cancer survivor’s celebration of life to a same-sex wedding, but never one for himself. When it comes to his life with Riley, he knows it’s failing, but not sure where it all went wrong. The silence hurts and worries him. Until a flurry of text messages changes the situation.

meet the author

A quiet one, Nicole Dennis curled up with the latest book of a favorite author. Since the beginning, there were these characters in her head, worlds wanting to be built on paper, and stories wanting to be told. She began writing during class and continues to this day. Now she can let others into her imagination and worlds that always celebrate the love between two or more people within LGBT, paranormal, and fantasy.

During the day, she works in a quiet office in Central Florida, where she also makes her home, and enjoys the down time to slip into her imagination. She is owned by a semi-demonic tortie calico, affectionately known as Fat Cat.

Contact & Media Info:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/NicoleDennis.Author

Blog: http://nicoledennisauthor.blogspot.com

Website: http://nicoledennisauthor.com

Email: nicoledennis.author@gmail.com

GoodreadsQ&A with Nicole Dennis: http://www.goodreads.com/group/show/50397-q-a-with-nicole-dennis

Goodreads Profile: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2791975.Nicole_Dennis

 

GRL Blog Tour

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

A Dangerous Game by Rick R. Reed: Guest Post and Exclusive Excerpt

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synopsis

Sex can be a dangerous business. So can love.

On the worst day of his life, Wren Gallagher wants oblivion when he steps into Tricks for a drink. When a mysterious stranger steps up to pay his tab, he offers Wren the key to fulfilling his dreams of prosperity and true love.

But appearances are not always what they seem.

His savior owns the escort agency À Louer, and he wants the young and handsome Wren as part of his stable of men-for-hire. Down on his luck, Wren figures, why not? He needs the money. When he joins, though, he doesn’t count on meeting Rufus, another escort with whom he falls hopelessly in love.

But their love story will have to overcome the obstacles of not only trading love for money, but À Louer’s dark—and deadly—secrets.

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excerpt

Exclusive Excerpt: Wren Picks Up an Abandoned Paper on the Bus and Discovers a Murder in A DANGEROUS GAME
A Guest Post by Rick R. Reed 

A Dangerous Game has its thriller aspect as well as its love aspect. Here’s where one of our boys first finds out that escorting can not only be risky—it can also be lethal.
Snatch that paper up. See what’s going on outside your own little dramafest. Maybe there’s something in there that will take your mind off Rufus for the next ten minutes. Hell, maybe the classifieds is just twitching with dream jobs, just for you.
Right.
Wren did lean over and pluck the newspaper from the seat. He scooted back up against the window and opened it.
And his heart nearly stopped.
The front-page headline practically screamed at him, making his blood run cold and the world around him dissolve.
Second Murder on City’s North Side Believed to be Linked to Escort Service
Wren fought his way through the spare, journalistic prose to learn that a second young man had been “stabbed to death along Chicago’s lakefront.” The victim, whose name and details were being withheld pending notification of next of kin, was believed to have been associated with the same escort service, À Louer, that Evan Maple, who was murdered in a similar fashion two weeks ago, worked for.
Wren scanned the article for more, but there was nothing to identify who the victim had been. But Wren was suddenly certain it had to have been Rufus who’d been killed.
That was the reason he hadn’t called.
He was dead. And before that he was being stalked by some serial killer out to put an end to male escorts by picking them off one by one, stopping their hearts and their commerce with something like a sharp hunting knife.
Wren felt like he was going to be sick. Although he still had several blocks to go, he reached up and pulled the cord to alert the bus driver he needed to get off. When the bus had barely stopped at a corner, Wren dropped the paper to the floor and hurried out the back door of the bus.
Outside the air was thick with humidity and exhaust fumes, even this early in the morning. The sun, beating down harshly out of a dirty white sky, didn’t serve to make him feel any better. Wren sat down on the curb and then put his head between his legs, trying to slow his breathing and force back the bile burning the back of his throat.
He sat there for several long minutes, waiting for his heart rate and respiration to slow, telling himself over and over again that he needed to get ahold of himself and that À Louer employed several young men, any one of which could have been the killer’s victim.

 

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meet the author
madison_parker_MG_4203-WEB CROPPEDRick 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). He is also a Rainbow Award Winner for both Caregiver and Raining Men. 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.”

STALK RICK
Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/rickrreedbooks
Twitter: www.twitter.com/rickrreed
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+RickReedWRITER
Blog: http://rickrreedreality.blogspot.com/
Website: www.rickrreed.com
Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/rick-r-reed
Email: rickrreedbooks@gmail.com

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

THIRDS Beyond the Books: Volume 1 by Charlie Cochet: Blog Tour, How to be Dexter J. Daley & Giveaway

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Hello all! Thank you so much for joining me here today for another stop on the THIRDS Beyond the Books: Volume 1 blog tour! A huge thank you to Two Chicks Obsessed with Books and Eye Candy for having me here today. We’ve talked a little about how THIRDS Beyond the Books came about, as well as Big Cat Rescue where the royalties of this book are being donated to. We have plenty of fun posts heading this way to celebrate the release of this book. So let’s talk a bit about Dex.

Let’s face it, without Dex there would be no THIRDS. He is the heart and soul of the series. I always have fun writing my characters, but I have to admit that I’ve never had as much fun with a character as I’ve had with Dex. It’s hard not to have fun with Dex. Even when he’s being angsty, angry, or dark, he’s still so much fun to write. But what does it take be Dex? Well, here’s a little graphic guide on how to be Dexter. J. Daley.

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Click to view full size image.

Do you share any traits with Dex? It’s okay, you can tell us. We won’t judge. What do you love most about our gummy bear munching menace?

***

ABOUT THE BOOK

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Genre: Gay Paranormal Romance, Shifters
Length: Novella
Published: June 8th, 2016
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: L.C. Chase
Ebook ISBN-13: 9781634773072

Join us as we celebrate the THIRDS universe with this collection of flash fiction stories written to prompts submitted by fans. Sometimes we want to know more about our favorite characters. Where they came from, how they became who they are, their families, friendships, and past heartaches. These snippets of moments in time offer an inside look at the lives of our favorite THIRDS characters. Whether it’s first shifts, the forging of unbreakable bonds, or a night full of shenanigans, these stories are sure to enrich your THIRDS reading experience.

** All royalties earned from THIRDS Beyond the Books are being donated to Big Cat Rescue.

 

ADD TO GOODREADS

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Dreamspinner Press | Amazon | All Romance eBooks | Barnes & Noble

paula review

This was the funniest thing I have read in a long time! Charlie came up with some great stories to go with her readers’ prompt. Each story was both entertaining and gives us more insight into each character. I liked that she gave us a glimpse at characters who don’t even have books yet. Each and every response to a prompt was entertaining and enlightening. We get to see more of all the characters and discover new things. I really enjoyed this and can’t wait to get more of this cast.

5 pieces of eye candy

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meet the author

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Charlie Cochet is an author by day and artist by night. Always quick to succumb to the whispers of her wayward muse, no star is out of reach when following her passion. From adventurous agents and sexy shifters, to society gentlemen and hardboiled detectives, there’s bound to be plenty of mischief for her heroes to find themselves in, and plenty of romance, too!

Currently residing in Central Florida, Charlie is at the beck and call of a rascally Doxiepoo bent on world domination. When she isn’t writing, she can usually be found reading, drawing, or watching movies. She runs on coffee, thrives on music, and loves to hear from readers.

Website | THIRDS HQ | Facebook | Facebook Author Page | Twitter | Pinterest | Tumblr | Instagram | Newsletter | DSP |Amazon |Goodreads

giveaway

Big Cat Rescue Tote bag with Big Cat goodies inside!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

TOUR SCHEDULE

June 1 – MM Good Book Reviews

June 6 – Two Chicks Obsessed with Books and Eye Candy
June 7 – Oh My Shelves
June 8 – The Novel Approach
June 8 – Dreamspinner Blog

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Release Day Event: June 8th – Love Bytes Reviews

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Check out the THIRDS on Pinterest.

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

Picked Fresh by Posy Roberts: Exclusive Cover Reveal, Excerpt and Giveaway

synopsis

Is five thousand miles far enough to say I love you?

Hudson Oliva loves stability. He was a throwaway teen before finding Kaleidoscope Gardens, but has since thrived at the commune. When Jude Garrity moves in, life gets even better, but Hudson still craves more. He knows he has to be satisfied with their exclusive status being temporary and that Jude will eventually navigate his full sexual awakening with their other housemates.

Hudson has a journey of his own to make. It might only require going home to settle his grandmother’s estate, but he plans to use his time away to figure out how to temper his feelings for Jude and bury his jealousy once and for all. But when Jude joins him on his trip, Hudson falls even deeper in love, especially after Jude stands by his side when he finally confronts his mother for rejecting him.

However, it’s not all hearts and flowers while they travel. They’re over two thousand miles from home when Hudson learns a ruthless corporate farm threatens the commune they both love. In order to save their way of life, Hudson must ask his mother for help. And if he wants a chance at a stable future with Jude, he has to tell him the truth about his feelings, no matter if it ruins the harmony he’s tried so hard to preserve.

Title: Picked Fresh
Author: Posy Roberts
Series: Naked Organics #2
(Can be read as a stand along but best read as a series)
Publisher: Labyrinth Bound Press
Genre: MM Romance
Length: 83,000 words, ~250 pages
Goodreads Link

Cover Designer: Natasha Snow

PickedFresh-fexcerpt

Jude moved where Hudson directed him, mouth soft now. He ended with Hudson’s nipple under his lips, tonged across it, gave playful bites and even a few harder ones. Hudson’s breath caught in his throat.
Jude looked up again and whispered, “Last night wasn’t enough to satisfy you?” He moved to kiss the other nipple, then the mark he’d left.
“Not sure I’ll ever be able to get enough of you.”
Jude stood and smirked, then popped a quick, chaste kiss to Hudson’s mouth. “As much as I’d like to put that theory to the test, I have to get to class.”
“I know. You always have to get to class.”
“Give me five minutes to deliver these eggs to the kitchen. Meet me at my car?”
“More kisses?”
“You betcha!”
Hudson nodded as Jude picked up the egg basket and walked away. It wasn’t like Hudson had time to test how much he needed of Jude to get enough. He had to do a load of laundry if he wanted clean underwear for his trip, so he pulled his T-shirt back over his head on his way to the springhouse to see who’s washday it was. Purple House was written in neat script on the chalkboard. He made a mental note and kept on walking.
In the gathering circle right outside Unity House, Hudson met up with Jude, who held out his hand the second he was within reach. Hudson took it, weaving their fingers together and allowing Jude to lead him to Jude’s tiny hybrid. There, Hudson leaned Jude against the driver’s door and gave him a few playful pecks.
“See you tonight?” Hudson asked.
“Yeah. I should be back around sunset. I’ll be there by suppertime, for sure.”
“Sleep in my bed with me?”
Jude nodded and closed his eyes in a soft way. He gave what Hudson knew was a parting hug. “Gotta go.” Jude got in the car, opened the backpack he’d left sitting on the passenger seat last night, and slipped his phone in the protected inner pocket. “Well, have a great day!”
“You too.” Hudson shut the driver’s door.
Hudson waved as Jude drove off the Kaleidoscope Gardens’ land for his busy day at Portland State. Once the car was out of sight, Hudson pressed the mark Jude had sucked right above his heart. It was sore, more from the bite than the sucking, but as Hudson peered down the neck of his shirt and studied the red mark, he smiled. He knew it would only get darker. Maybe even purple, which would be perfect, because it would be fading to yellow by the time he got home again. He couldn’t take Jude with him to Kentucky, but he could take his mark.

 

tco-also in series

 

FarmFresh-f-1

synopsis

Jude Garrity visits the farmers market every Saturday. As an environmental engineering student, he’s curious about living off the grid and sustainable agriculture.

And one particular farmer.

Hudson Oliva has worked hard to support his commune, where queer people live without fear of harm or retribution. When Jude asks pointed questions about living there, Hudson realizes he needs to be honest about his home. Few people know what the farm is actually about, but Jude is insistent.

Jude moves to Kaleidoscope Gardens, however his sexual hang-ups make it hard to adjust. He’s an uptight virgin living among people who have sex freely and with multiple partners. When Jude finally loosens up, Hudson is flooded with emotions. Falling for Jude wasn’t part of Hudson’s life plan. But when vindictive rumors about the commune begin to spread, love might be all he has left.

Genre: Contemporary Romance, MM Romance, Gay Fiction, with a splash of MMM+
Length: Novel, 202 pages

Goodreads Link 

Book Trailer

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Naked Origins Hudson 2fShort story. This is not a romance but is Hudson Oliva’s backstory on how he escaped his parents and moved to the commune.

Read it here

Goodreads Link

synopsis

Hudson Oliva didn’t expect the world to end with the new millennium, but his life did change forever on that New Year’s Eve. After his religious parents walk in on him with Zac in his bed, Hudson is sent to conversion therapy. The parents he returns home to after being cured aren’t the same people he’s known his entire life. They’re cold and withdrawn.

In order to survive, Hudson becomes an expert at lying while working hard to be the perfect son, yet his parents remain emotionally distant. He’s sure the pray-away-the-gay camp broke something inside him along with tearing his family apart. When his parents discover Hudson has continued seeing Zac for years, they demand he go back to the camp. Hudson has no choice but to run. Somehow he has to find a safe place, but he has to get out of Florida first.

giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway

meet the author

Posy Roberts WebPosy Roberts writes about the realistic struggles of men looking for love. Whether her characters are family men, drag queens, or lonely men searching for connections, they all find a home in her stories.

Posy is a Jill of all trades and master of the drill and paintbrush. She’s married to a partner who makes sure she doesn’t forget to eat or sleep during her writing frenzies. Her daughter, a budding author and cinematographer, helps her come up with character names. For fun, Posy enjoys crafting, hiking, and singing spontaneously about the mundane, just to make regular life more interesting.

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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.

#13Months#13Scenes by Jessie G: Honoring Memorial Day

13Months13Scenes by Jessie G Hosted by Two Chicks Obsessed

In memory of all the service men and women who have lost their lives in the line of duty.

Micah peered at Garrison over his coffee cup and blushed when those blue eyes met his knowingly. It was ridiculously early for him to be up, much less dressed and out of the house. He wasn’t a morning person by anyone’s standards and didn’t attempt to be even though Garrison was always up before dawn. That’s if he even slept. Almost a year after leaving the Marines, sleep remained elusive for his lover.

Garrison reached over and tucked a lock of blue hair behind his ear. Normally, the multicolored layers would be artfully spiked, but the day called for a more solemn appearance. “I’m not sure I’ve ever seen you leave the house like this. Not sure I like it either.”

That wasn’t what he was expecting. Garrison was always complimentary of his ever-changing appearance, but never more so than when he was stripped of all the products he used. “No?”

“No.” Garrison snagged his hand as he settled back in the booth, keeping them connected in a way that made his heart ache. The years they spent apart had left an indelible mark and had them seeking any little bit of contact whenever they were together. “I prefer this look to be just for me.”

The flush of pleasure spread through him like wildfire. God knew he loved Garrison with every cell in his body, but he was even more impossible to resist when he said things like that. “I just thought that my normal spikes weren’t really appropriate for where we’re going.”

Garrison’s eyebrows winged up in surprise. “Because the way you style your hair is somehow going to detract from the good work you’re doing? Or that the fallen will care one way or the other?”

Well, when he put it that way. “I just wanted to look respectable…or, at least, as respectable as someone covered in tattoos could look.”

That didn’t sound any better and now Garrison was frowning at him. “What’s really going on, baby?”

It wasn’t that what he said was a lie, he had toned down his appearance out of respect, but Garrison saw right through him. He was an easy read on a good day, but on only one cup of coffee and after being roused while it was still dark? Yeah, he had zero ability to deflect and he was worried enough that he gave up the pretense without a fight.

“Are you gonna be okay doing this? I mean, I could have gone by myself.” When Garrison smirked, Micah grumbled, “I do have an alarm on my phone that I’m perfectly capable of using. And you know I’ve done this before. It just…if it’s too much, you’ll tell me, right? We can leave anytime.”

“Micah.” Garrison breathed his name and leaned forward again, tugging as he did so they were that much closer. “Baby, I love that you worry over me, but I promise I’ll be just fine because I know how lucky I am. I’m alive, I’m whole, and I have a man who loves me like crazy. If it hurts to stand over the graves of my fallen brothers and sisters, then I only have to look at the pain on the faces of their loved ones to be grateful that I didn’t do that to you. If they can endure the loss, I can stand there and honor them.”

Micah blinked back tears and wished there wasn’t a table between them. He knew that Garrison struggled with the memories of the men and women he’d watched die in the heat of battle, the ones who came home broken—emotionally and physically—and even the role he’d played. His big heart mourned for every soldier, friend or foe, because Garrison believed those on the other side fought for the same reasons he did—a safer world. There were no winners in war, not when there were so many casualties on both sides.

“I do love you like crazy.” Micah reminded him multiple times a day and knew he’d be doing it for the rest of their lives.

Garrison brushed away his tears and closed the distance to steal a quick kiss. When he pulled back, his smirk said he’d reach his limit of heavy stuff. “I think I love you more.”

Understanding his lover as he did, Micah scrounged up a suitable scowl and demanded, “How do you figure that?”

“I risked my life waking you up early enough to stop here so you can have Nutella filled French toast. You’re not exactly friendly in the morning and this place will never be on the way to Lake Worth, no matter which way you tilt the map.” Garrison gave him a smug grin and dug into his own breakfast of eggs and potatoes.

Greenstreet Café in the Grove might be in the wrong direction, but the breakfast was worth the side trip. With a menu full of decadent delights like cinnamon roll pancakes and his favorite French toast, Micah could only scoff at Garrison’s less inspired selection.

“I concede that you did go above and beyond this morning,” Micah offered slowly, letting a little evil grin form on his face. “However, we wouldn’t have had to go out of our way if you had just made this for me at home. Just think of all the ways I could’ve shown my appreciation for your efforts if we weren’t so busy driving.”

Those blue eyes narrowed on him and he had to laugh. He might be an easy read, but Garrison’s libido had a hair trigger. “If you’re so eager to show your appreciation, there’s plenty of room in the truck and I have excellent focus.”

Having put that focus to the test with more than one mobile blow job, he couldn’t deny it. That didn’t mean he was sucking Garrison’s dick on the way to the cemetery. He was sure that was a violation of all rules of respectability and decorum and…shit, he didn’t know much about either, but he was really trying today.

“I love that you’re actually considering it.” Garrison laughed softly and pushed his empty plate away. Before Micah could respond either way, the smile slipped away and Garrison said, “Tell me what it’s like.”

The quiet request made him sigh. Micah knew it was going to be a long, emotional day. His lover was the strongest man he knew, but Garrison tended to hide his suffering because he didn’t want it to spill over into their relationship. It was something they worked on constantly and Micah was grateful that Garrison didn’t completely shut him out. Still, he worried that today would erase some of the progress they’d made. “Okay. Well, this is only the second year they’ve been able to do it at the South Florida National Cemetery and it’s not the same everywhere. I was at one in DC where they had a parade and speeches, another where they did the 21-gun salute…” Micah cleared his throat, not wanting to get choked up yet. “It’s good to see everyone remembering and honoring, but I’m not really big on the parades and speeches, you know? For me, it’s about walking from grave to grave and thanking each soldier. It’s taking the time to remember them by name, saying it out loud as you place the flag, showing gratitude…”

Despite his best attempts not to cry, Micah was just so grateful that no one would be placing a flag in front of Garrison’s grave today. Garrison was around the table before the first tear fell and Micah burrowed close. Neither cared if anyone was looking at them and Garrison didn’t try to shush him. They just held each other and remembered.

His gratitude extended to the soldiers in Garrison’s unit that had his back and to the other units who provided support, and to each branch of the military that worked together to keep each other alive. It extended to the soldiers who came before and paved the way, and to the one’s that would come after to continue the fight. Honoring them, saying their names, expressing his gratitude—it was such a small thing and they deserved so much more.

Finally, he lifted his head and let Garrison wipe away his tears. “You’re gonna be doing that a lot today.”

“That’s okay.” Garrison kissed him gently and pressed their foreheads together. “Thank you. From me, from them, thank you.”

“For what?” Micah was truly perplexed. His efforts were so meager in comparison to their sacrifices.

“Remembering.”

***

For information on how you can volunteer to put flags on the graves of our Veterans this Memorial Day, visit the National Cemetery Administration at the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs.

© 2016 Jessie G Books, Inc. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from the author is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jessie G and Jessie G Books, Inc. with the appropriate and specific direction to the original content here at Two Chicks Obsessed with Books and Eye Candy.

In the United States, Armed Forces Day is celebrated on the third Saturday in May. It falls near the end of Armed Forces Week, which begins on the second Saturday of May and ends on the third Sunday of May. First observed on 20 May 1950, the day was created on 31 August 1949, to honor Americans serving in the five U.S. military branches – the U.S. Army, U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Air Force and U.S. Coast Guard – following the consolidation of the military services in the U.S. Department of Defense. It was intended to replace the separate Army-, Navy-, Air Force-, Marine Corps- and Coast Guard Days, but the separate days are still observed, especially within the respective services. The first Armed Forces Day was celebrated by parades, open houses, receptions and air shows. The United States’ longest continuously running Armed Forces Day Parade is held in Chattanooga, Tennessee. In 2016, Chattanooga celebrated the 67th year of the Armed Forces Day Parade. Because of their unique training schedules, National Guard and Reserve units may celebrate Armed Forces Day/Week over any period in the month of May.

Author’s Note
I hope you enjoyed Memorial Day with Garrison & Micah in the sixth installment of my #13months13scenes tour. The guys from Sizzling Miami, Devils Pride MC, and The Forgotten Soldier series will be appearing on different blogs throughout 2016 with little slice of life moments like this.

 

Did you miss a previous installment?

December 20th KathyMac Reviews Christmas Theme
January 20th Book Lovers 4Ever New Year Theme
February 20th Carly’s Book Reviews Valentine Theme
March 21st 3 Chicks After Dark Spring Break
April 20th Sassy Girl Books April Fools Theme
May 20th Two Chicks Obsessed Memorial Day Theme

Mark your calendars, there are still 10 more installments to come!

June 20th Foxylutely Book Reviews !!Jessie’s Birthday!!
July 20th BFD Book Blog Bull & Red’s 1 Year Anniversary
August 20th Molly Lolly Romance Awareness Month
September 20th Bike Book Reviews Kyle’s Birthday – preview of Saving Saul
October 20th Divine Magazine Halloween Theme
November 21st Joyfully Jay Thanksgiving Theme
December 20th Prism Book Alliance Christmas Theme

 

 

 

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

No Longer an Amazon Reviewer, but still an Author/Book Supporter

So, yesterday was not a banner day for me as a reviewer. I got the following short, but not so sweet email from Amazon:
Hello,

You have failed to comply with our policies by manipulating product reviews. As a result, you may no longer post reviews on Amazon.com, and your reviews have been suppressed. Any new reviews written will automatically be suppressed.

To learn more about this policy, please see our Customer Review Creation Guidelines (http://www.amazon.com/review-guidelines).

Yep, I now have a great big fat ZERO under my reviews. Every single one wiped out. I’ll admit, I cried. I have to ask myself, why me? What did I do? I can’t concretely say, and since I’ve had a conversation with Amazon about something else that I didn’t like that they did, I knew that I wouldn’t get a single answer from them, so I didn’t bother.

But I was still upset, who wouldn’t be? Let’s face it. I was called a liar and a cheat, and I am neither of those things (as my close friends will tell you). However, I did something that many others before me have done. In fact, I believe that this is going to get worse, not better.  We are going to see more and more of this, until likely only verified purchases will be allowed on Amazon. I tripped the Amazon Bully Algorithm, and got squashed like the bug that I am. (In fact, for those that this will happen to later, I think I know what triggered it. I had had reviews that were suppressed previously for an author friend. Somehow they knew we were friends [still not sure exactly how they know that] and they kept rejecting my reviews for “content” when posting them. Since then I had not attempted another review for that friend. Now a year later, I attempted to post a review, and several days later I get the email.) So, yes, I cried. I put “FUCK YOU AMAZON! FUCK YOU!” on my personal FB account, and cried on my good friends shoulder (another author friend who picks me up when I am down, and vice versa). And she told me to buck up, and we’d figure out what to do.candy-cookie-main

So here I am, doing something. I’m mad as hell, and I really can’t do much about it right? I can’t control the beheamoth that is Amazon. But I can control me and how I react. So, I will continue to support the author’s through my blog (which fortunately has reviewers who CAN post to Amazon), and post my reviews to place I wouldn’t have normally, like GR, BN, ARe and DSP. And I will continue to post their Amazon links, and throw more ARe and DSP links out there. I’ll do the blog tours, and the cover reveals, and the interviews, and the release day reviews. I’ll be part of a blog tour company that will help reinforce what I believe, that authors work hard, and getting their books out there makes people happy.

What Amazon’s words CANNOT take away from me is my reputation. Because let’s face it, their own reputation is not the best, so trying to destroy mine won’t get them too far. I know that I am respected in the MM book community, by authors, bloggers and readers. I know that my reputation is honest, reliable, supportive and caring. Amazon can’t take that away from me, even if they want to. If anything they have strengthened my position.

Moving forward will feel a little tough, but if we are going to fight back against Amazon for their arbitrary and hurtful decisions, then we have to hit them where it hurts, their income statement. So, although I will continue to be an affiliate, and am appreciative of it, I will also be more willing and able to yell the benefits of purchasing at other e-tailers, when the opportunity is there. Because they are the ones that feel the pinch, much more so than me. Supporting them can help the authors keep their product available to more people.

In the meantime, I hope that the authors and bloggers I have supported over the last several years know that my support will not waiver. I will just be doing it beyond the iron curtain of Amazon.

Denise

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

About Last Night by Caitlin Ricci: Release Day Review and Guest Post

AboutLastNightLG

synopsis

Before jumping into his first semester of college, Thomas Maloney decides to lose his virginity at a party to a stranger he’s sure he’ll never see again. Only the next day, he’s surprised to learn the same one-night stand will be sharing his dorm room. Thomas considers himself lucky, but his new roommate—not so much.

Closeted as they come, football jock Remington “Rem” Daniels is on track for a shot at the pros. Rem tries to play it cool and avoid falling for the confidently gay Thomas, which could hurt his chances. Dealing with their constant need to get in bed together wouldn’t be so hard if Rem didn’t have a girlfriend and Thomas didn’t have a conscience.

When she delivers news that will change Rem’s life forever, Thomas knows it’s time to move back home to Thornwood, Colorado. But neither the distance nor knowing Rem belongs to someone else helps Thomas get over him. Rem’s feelings haven’t changed either. When it comes down to love or football, Rem will have to make the hardest choice of his life and hope Thomas will still be waiting for him when he does.

Title: About Last Night
Series: Thornwood
Author: Caitlin Ricci
Release Date: April 4, 2016
Category: Contemporary
Pages: 200

deanna review

This is the story of Thomas, while off to college in a new city decides to lose his virginity at a party before college starts next week. The hottie he hooks up with ends up being Rem his roommate and closeted football star with a steady girlfriend. Even knowing it’s wrong, Thomas can’t get enough of Rem and they continue sleeping together. Rem and his girlfriend end up getting some pretty shocking news and as Thomas sees that Rem will never be in a position to “come out” for him he leaves college and returns home at the end of the semester.

As time passes Rem and Thomas both have growing up to do, but their feelings never fade and only the test of time will tell if they are meant to be.

I am in awe of this book, the character development is beautiful. Rem put Thomas through some pretty crappy stuff, but Thomas made it through without looking like a doormat and I feel like Rem learned and grew from those experiences as well. He never came off as an entitled jerk.

The story takes place over several years and you get to watch the characters grow and mature. Their lives change drastically but their love is a constant, tangible thing.

I think this book was very well written. The story moved along at a good pace. It was angsty at times but it wasn’t overdone.

Being the greedy person that I am, I would have loved an epilogue to show how they were doing a year or so down the road. I can see myself rereading this one again soon.

5 pieces of eye candy

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Heather's Review

About Last Night by Caitlin Ricci is the second book in the Thornwood series. I hadn’t read the first, but I can assure you, it’s not necessary to feel in the loop when you start this book.

At first glance, I will admit, it sounded like it had the potential to be one big cliche. Thomas, the small town virgin, decides he’s going to lose his virginity the moment he gets to Miami, where he’s going to college. Little did he know the masked man who gave it to would be his roommate.

Rem is a very conflicted young man. He knows he’s bi, but can’t be out because he has dreams of playing pro football. Okay, I can accept that, because I believe it’s likely still a very prevalent issue. Unfortunately, his girlfriend of five years also doesn’t know that he’s bi. Or that he’s been scratching the itch, so to speak.

Even with the cheating, I was sucked into this book. My heart ached for Thomas, having to watch the man that he loved with the girl who loved him. And yes, it’s clearly pointed out that while Rem likes Amanda, he’s not in love with her. It was uncomfortable to see Amanda and Thomas becoming friends, mostly because that meant he was keeping secrets from someone who at one point told him that he’s a great friend to her.

Everything changes when Amanda announces that she’s pregnant. And this is where it gets weird… for some unknown reason, Thomas’s mother thinks it’s the perfect solution for her and her husband to adopt the baby, even though she knows her son is in love with the baby daddy. Yeah, because that wouldn’t be awkward at all. So, the three of them fly out at Christmas and when Rem and Amanda go back to Florida, Thomas stays behind because it’s too painful.

The second half of the book is a lot of phone calls. It spans years, but didn’t feel choppy. You can tell Rem was never sold on giving the baby up for adoption and loves her with all his heart. He’s glad that Thomas is in his baby’s life if he’s not. It was uncomfortable, again, but it felt real and raw.

There’s a wedding, and eventually a divorce, and Rem see his dreams come true. He falters, upsetting Thomas, which makes him realize that he can’t let him walk away again. So, they are going to make it work. He drives up to see Thomas and meet Madeline, who’s now a five year old instead of the newborn she was the last time he saw her, and Thomas takes Madeline to a game. The whole time, she just thinks Rem is her brother’s friend.

Up to this point, I was honestly going to give the book five stars. Caitlin Ricci handled some uncomfortable topics very well and made me feel their pain. Seriously, I was bawling my eyes out through much of the book.

But then… that ending. It’s impossible for me to ignore how upset I was with the ending of the book. There were two major struggles for Rem: his career and the baby he gave up for adoption. When I read the words “The End” I knew I wasn’t going to get resolution on either point. Yes, he came out, but the reader is left with zero indication of how it was handled by the team or by the public. And yes, he mentioned possibly buying a condo in Thornwood to move closer to Thomas and get to be part of Madeline’s life a bit more, but we have no clue if that happened. We don’t know if Madeline ever learned the truth about him (which she may have, given the terms of the adoption) or if he and Thomas were a huge part of her life. Hell, we don’t know if he followed through on teaching his daughter how to throw a football. All of those issues could’ve been resolved through an epilogue giving us a glimpse into the future, but instead, they weren’t and it completely destroyed the feels I had going on before that.

3 pieces of eye candy

3 pieces of eye candy

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Guest Post

Hey. I’m Caitlin Ricci and I’m here to talk a bit about my new novel, About Last Night, and the tiny town of Thornwood where all of the characters in this series live.

Sometimes with a series, especially one that you don’t have to read in order, it’s hard to keep track of how everyone is connected. I’m hoping that this post helps clear some of that up.

Thornwood was first introduced in Weathering the Storm, which is a young adult novel with Harmony Ink Press. In that novel Robbie, and his brothers Daniel and Ben come to live with their Uncle Caleb after their mom dies. Dan, their dad, comes with them and for a while it works out for them. Caleb is dating one of Thornwood’s cops, Trent. Trent is the son of the Thornwood police chief.

I had so many editors ask me for Caleb and Trent’s story that the Thornwood series was born. They fall in love in One More Time, which is Thornwood book 1. Before Caleb and Trent got together, Trent had sex with Eli who works at the horse rescue where Caleb adopts a horse from in that book. Eli’s book is the third in the series, which comes out late 2017.

Weathering the Storm would come next in the reading order.

In Thornwood, there’s a diner called Rosie’s, which is really the only place to get anything to eat unless you want to go to the deli at the grocery store and get something there. Most people in town go to Rosie’s a few times a week at the very least. They have the best milkshakes.

Trent’s mom owned the diner and her best friend, Roxie, worked there. Because they both had names starting with R they decided that their children would have matching names too. Roxie calls Trent her son Thomas’s cousin. Roxie looks after Trent since his mom has passed away, but sometimes he can be frustrating. She’s convinced that Thomas is essentially a perfect little angel who can do no wrong most of the time. She was a great character to write.

Thomas lives with his mom, dad, and multiple children they’re fostering in a townhouse in the center of town. The grocery story is behind them and Rosie’s is just down the street. These are the only townhouses in Thornwood and Trent’s is just a few doors down.

The idea for Thornwood came from getting lost on my way from Denver to Black Hawk, which is our little version of Las Vegas. Only we have mountains and little creeks and old mining towns that are so tiny there are barely enough people in them to even consider them a town.

That’s the kind of place I wanted Thornwood to be. It started off as a mining town and most of the people have left. The ones who have stayed do so for the small town life. They don’t mind that I-70 often gets shut down in the winter, or that sometimes they can’t go very far because there’s a rockslide blocking the highway because they enjoy the community and the slower pace of life there where everyone knows each other and Roxie is the source of the town’s gossip.

Thank you for spending some time with me today. What would your ideal town be like?

Caitlin

meet the author

Caitlin was fortunate growing up to be surrounded by family and teachers that encouraged her love of reading. She has always been a voracious reader and that love of the written word easily morphed into a passion for writing. She comes from a military family and the men and women of the armed forces are close to her heart. She also enjoys gardening and horseback riding in the Colorado Rockies where she calls home with her wonderful husband and their two dogs. Her belief that there is no one true path to happily ever after runs deeply through all of her stories.

www.caitlinricci.com

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

Happy by Chris Scully : Release Day Blast, Exclusive Excerpt and Giveaway

Happy_cover

synopsis

Growing up Greek-Canadian, Peter Georgiou always knew his duty was to his family, for whom twenty-first century rules don’t apply. In his early thirties, Peter still lives at home, dates who his parents tell him to, and works at the family restaurant. But watching his two best friends find happiness in each other’s arms has made him worry over his destiny.

When Louie Papadakis returns home to nurse his broken heart and start a new life, he can’t believe his sister is dating his high school crush, Peter. There’s a sadness behind Peter’s eyes that draws him in, and a chemistry he wishes he could ignore. After his closeted ex broke his heart, Louie is afraid to fall in love again, especially with a man who’s keeping secrets.

As Peter finds himself drawn to Louie in unexpected ways, old and new worlds collide. Then a family crisis forces Peter’s hand, and he must decide if he’s willing to sacrifice his happiness for family duty.

Title: Happy
Author: Chris Scully
Release Date: March 30, 2016
Category: Contemporary
Pages: TBC (Novella)

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tco exclusive

“So,” Sandra explained, “as I told you in my e-mail, it’s a one-bed, one-bath unit. There’s a pool downstairs, and I’ll show you the gym and the media room later if you’re interested. No parking, though.”

“I don’t have a car,” Louie said.

“Perfect, then. You won’t need it anyway if you work downtown. I’m looking for someone willing to sign a ten-month lease immediately.”

“Immediately?”

“Well, starting next month. Is that a problem?”

“No. Actually… that’s great. I’m just surprised you don’t have someone lined up.”

“Oh I did. She backed out at the last minute. Which is why I’m now freaking out. I leave in two weeks. It’s hard to find someone willing to sign a short-term lease. Most people want at least a year. When Tammy said she knew someone who was looking for a place, I was so relieved.”

“A wine fridge,” Peter exclaimed, still in the kitchen. “This place is awesome.”

Did Peter know nothing about apartment hunting? You weren’t supposed to let them know you were interested. Sandra dimpled. “You guys are too cute. I have such a good vibe about you.”

Oh, no. Did she think they were together? Before Louie could correct her, she began talking again. “This is a fun building. Lots of young professionals. And most people are pretty cool. You guys won’t have to worry about fitting in.” She turned away. “Come on, the bedroom’s through here.”

“Why would she worry about us fitting in?” Peter, who had finally emerged from the kitchen, whispered in his ear as they followed.

“She thinks we’re a couple, Peter.”

The look on his face was priceless: like he couldn’t decide whether to be shocked, amused, or flattered.

Louie grinned. He gave Peter a shove. “Don’t get all worked up. You should be so lucky.”

He felt a slight warmth in his face as he followed Sandra down a short hallway and into the sole bedroom. It was definitely a shoebox. “It’s a little tight in here,” he pointed out.

“All we need is a bed. And you like to cuddle, so a queen is fine.”

We? Cuddle? Louie whirled around, but Peter was already moving into the en suite bathroom. “Oh my God. Check out the size of the shower,” he exclaimed, voice echoing off the tile. “We’d both fit in here, Louie. And the tub has jets. This place is great, babe.”

Sandra made an “aw, isn’t that sweet” face, and Louie decided he had a pretend boyfriend to kill. “Excuse me a minute.”

He marched into the bathroom, ignoring the sleek gray tile and chrome fixtures. “Babe?” he hissed, poking Peter in the chest. “Really?”

“Do you like ‘honey’ better? Sweetie?”

Louie narrowed his eyes. The bastard was enjoying this, judging by his smirk.

“So, what do you think?” Sandra asked, poking her head through the door.

“We love it,” Peter replied without hesitation. “What about the furniture?”

“I’m taking some of it with me, but the rest can stay, or I’ll put it in storage if you don’t want it.”

Louie still wasn’t convinced. It was a lot of money, and with only the one bedroom, he wouldn’t even be able to have a roommate. “It’s at the top of my budget.”

“For the right tenant, I might be willing to negotiate. I need someone I can trust. Tammy likes you, and I trust her judgment.”

Tammy had known him a week, Louie wanted to point out. He wouldn’t put too much stock in her judgment.

“And to be honest,” Sandra continued, “I would feel better leasing to a couple than a single person.”

Peter’s arm wrapped around his shoulders, taking Louie by surprise. “Guess it’s a lucky day for all of us, then.”

denise review

This was my first book by Chris Scully, and I was impressed by the writing skills of the author. She had a great ability to show the feelings of her MC’s, not just with her words, but with the actions, and the reactions.

Peter, in all honesty, frustrated me for about 70% of the book, which I think was the author’s intention. 🙂 He was so stuck in this dead end job, in a dead end life, and really had nothing in mind as to how to get out of it, or if he wanted to. His mother was such a stereotype of what I imagine a native Greek mother would be like, clinging to her son, guilting him into staying home for college, that I wanted to throttle Peter for giving in, and allowing it to continue. His father was not that much different, working himself into the ground, and telling his only son that he should do the same. He really had no idea if he was gay, because he had always lived his life how his parents wanted him to. Then he met Louie.

These two started as friends, although it was obvious that they quickly wanted to be more, even if they didn’t act on it. Meanwhile Louie fresh from a rough breakup, and a move across the country, to start over where his life had begun. He was heartbroken, and new back to town, and becoming friends with Peter helped bring him back to life. I really liked that it wasn’t forced, it happened naturally, and then began to slowly progress to more.

My one issue with the book was that it could have been longer. If it had been longer, I would have felt that the resolution with Peter and his parents would not have felt rushed, and like it was tied up in a neat little bow. I liked where Peter and his parents got, (although not seeing his mother’s last reactions seemed out of place) but I felt like I needed more incidents of them getting to that place, not just having an unpleasant event bring on Peter’s happiness.

All in all, though, a strong book with really good characters that I would like to catch up with as they continue their path toward being fulfilled in life.

4 pieces of eye candy

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meet the author

CHRIS SCULLY lives in Toronto, Canada. She grew up spinning romantic stories in her head and always dreamed of one day being a writer even though life had other plans. Her characters have accompanied her through career turns as a librarian and an IT professional, until finally, to escape the tedium of a corporate day job, she took a chance and began putting her daydreams down on paper.

Tired of the same old boy-meets-girl stories, she’s found a home in gay romance and strives to give her characters the happy endings they deserve. She divides her time between a mundane 9-5 cubicle job and a much more interesting fantasy life. When she’s not working or writing (which isn’t often these days) she loves puttering in the garden and traveling. She is an avid reader and tries to bring pieces of other genres and styles to her stories. While her head is crammed full of all the things she’d like to try writing, her focus is always on the characters first. She describes her characters as authentic, ordinary people—the kind of guy you might meet on the street, or the one who might be your best friend.

Although keeping up with social media is still a struggle given her schedule, she does love to hear from readers.

Connect with Chris:

Website: chrisscullyblog.wordpress.com

Facebook: facebook.com/chris.scully.author

Goodreads: goodreads.com/author/show/6152322.Chris_Scully

Email: cscully@bell.net

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

Double Alchemy by Susan Mac Nicol: Anniversary Blog Tour with Exclusive Guest Post

Two Chicks Obsessed with Books and Eye Candy wanted to congratulate Susan Mac Nicol on the second anniversary of the publishing of this awesome series!!! Sue did an amazing job creating this paranormal world (see Guest Post below) and we are happy to see how well it has done. Congrats Sue! If you would like to read the review of Double Alchemy from two years ago, check it out here.

 

Double AlchemysynopsisPowerful yet tormented modern warlock Quinn Fairmont must initiate the silver-eyed Cade Mairston into the world of witchfinders, Withinners, and what can happen when two men fall truly, madly, deeply in love.

THE WORLD IN SHADOW

In modern London there lurks a warlock, Quinn Fairmont. Dangerous, powerful, tortured, sharing his body with the soul of an ancient Welsh sorcerer, Quinn is never alone—and never wholly himself. He fights against all those who would exploit his kind. He takes pleasure where he can find it.

In the forest of Hampstead Heath, Quinn’s hometown, Cade Mairston appears to him like a waking dream. Lithe, lean and silver-eyed, he evokes feelings in Quinn unlike any other: lust with true affection, immediate and shocking. Cade is clearly more than he seems. And yet, if a man of the world, Cade is innocent. He knows nothing of warlocks, witchfinders or Withinners. He knows nothing of what he is, what he might be, or what he might feel. For him, the story is just beginning. Magyck, peril and passion await.

Release Date: March 24th 2014

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Book Trailer

 

excerpt

Cade Mairston was no ordinary man. Quinn had known it from the minute he’d touched Cade’s hand, smelt his scent and heard the rushing of his blood through his veins. Cade was Fey.

Not overtly Fey, but something resided there, buried deep down within him. Quinn didn’t think Cade Mairston had any idea who or what he was.

Quinn shivered. The way Cade had crouched in a fighter’s stance, fierce glare and strong body ready to do battle— he’d been inspiring. It was only due to Quinn’s Warlock skills that he’d the ability to anticipate and deflect the other man’s moves and not be grievously injured. Cade Mairston was a strong, agile presence and Quinn wouldn’t have liked his privates to be on the receiving end of the other man’s foot, which was attached to a muscled leg which he wished would wrap itself around his legs as he pounded the man’s arse….

Quinn checked himself mentally.12834939_10153685756448445_566151439_n

Christ, Quinn. Get a grip! Hell, my hormones are running riot.

Thank God the man was gay. Quinn’s gaydar worked very well, thank you, despite noticing the evidence of the large erection the man had sported in his trendy cream chinos for him.

What were the odds of meeting another gay Fey? Quinn chuckled softly. If things had turned out the other way, Quinn would have been in danger of deflowering a straight man and that one never worked out for the best.

Cade had looked a little rattled himself. For a moment, from the look in Cade’s smouldering grey eyes, Quinn had thought he might be about to get savagely violated. While Quinn topped most of the time he was definitely not averse to being taken by a man like Cade. There’d been anticipation so strong for Cade to touch him, kiss him right there, that he’d lost his breath for a moment. Quinn had a really tight feeling in his boxers right now as his cock threatened to burst into song and dance a jig out of his pants.

He sighed. Best get home, have a cold shower and do whatever else was necessary to relieve the turmoil snaking through his nether regions. Cade’s sexy stubble on his jawline and light silver eyes were playing havoc with Quinn’s sexual urges. Next time they met— and he was sure there’d be a next time— he’d have to search his apothecary for something that would deaden the sexual attraction. If not he’d never make it through a next meeting without ripping off Cade’s clothes until his need was fully satisfied for the first time. After the first time, it became more controllable. Experience had taught both he and Taliesin that.

 Guest Post

A world that doesn’t exist….

In Double Alchemy, I needed to create an imaginary magical world that doesn’t exist- as far we know. Of course, I’d like to believe anything is possible. I’m sure we all do.Valerie DA

So, if this world doesn’t exist, you can’t really do any research. You have to rely on your imagination, forgotten fairy tales, stories of witches and legends, films that invoke mystical and wondrous lands and somehow find something in all of that that allows you to create your own, unique setting.

Quinn and Cade live in the modern world, in the centre of London. They both have normal jobs, live with normal people and have to face the same day to day pressures that any of us would in real life. They also have to face an alternate world where magic and sorcery exists. They face daily struggles in overcoming evil of a monstrous nature, of making life or death decisions, of finding love, acceptance and happiness. Of dealing with the loss of people we love.

Oh hang on. Actually, that truly does mirror the real world. One only has to look at Hitler, at what doctors and nurses do every day, at the love stories unfolding around us and the pressures of tackling being gay, transgender, black, disabled, or of a different faith. And of course we all live with the loss of loved ones.

All I’ve done in creating my world is overlay a sense of magic and mystery over what we all live with each day. Allow the reader to be transporteWater sprite 2d to a time when fingers blazed blue fire, spells abounded and time travel of a sort was a reality. When witches hefting out severed hands from their handbags in board meetings was a surprise, but not particularly frowned upon. When laying the man you love down in a lake to be taken by water sprites to hopefully be healed from his wounds is something that has to be done.

I loved letting my imagination run riot for these two books, to create a magical world I’d personally love to live in. There’s something freeing about being able to write what you want and bring a little magic into the real world which can sometimes be scary and depressing.

I’m pleased other people thought so too. Double Alchemy won a Bronze award in the AUTHORSdb cover contest and also took first place in the ParanAward winnerormal Romance Guild Awards in 2014.

It’s humbling to have someone recognise the love and passion you spent nurturing into a story.

Thanks so much for popping down to the blog and reading this post.

 

tco-also in series

Double Alchemy Climax

synopsis

Powerful modern warlock Quinn Fairmont found ecstasy with the silver-eyed and not-quite-human Cade Mairston, but to know true happiness the pair must best both the shadow of a long-ago lover and an ancient enemy who seeks to destroy love, light and all they hold dear.
A BLINDING LIGHT
It begins with a Book of Shadows discovered by a London coven. The grimoire is as dangerous as it is rare, which is why it evokes modern-day warlock Quinn Fairmont’s desire. He collects objects of great power and beauty—like his lover, Cade Mairston.

Against all odds he and Cade found each other, but their perils have just begun. First is the ex-lover who once held Quinn in thrall. And, someone has been killing warlocks. Could it be one of his own kind? There are those too who would challenge Quinn’s power in their quest to overthrow him as Grand Master. Or is the danger something darker, something invoked inadvertently, rising from the shadows, building from the very inside of a man until it brings an end with a quick flash of light? Of the truth, the surface has only been scratched. Now Quinn and Cade must go deeper and find both answers and an end. They must learn what lurks in the hearts of men…and whether it seeks to love or destroy.

Release Date: May 22nd 2014

Goodreads Link

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Boroughs Publishing

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meet the authorSusan Mac Nicol

Susan Mac Nicol is a self- confessed bookaholic, an avid watcher of videos of sexy pole dancing men, geek, nerd and in love with her Smartphone. This little treasure is called ‘the boyfriend’ by her long suffering husband, who says if it vibrated, there’d be no need for him. Susan hasn’t had the heart to tell him there’s an app for that…

She is never happier than when sitting in the confines of her living room/study/on a cold station platform scribbling down words and making two men fall in love. She is a romantic at heart and believes that everything happens (for the most part) for a reason. She likes to think of herself as a ‘half full’ kinda gal, although sometimes that philosophy is sorely tested.

Lover of walks in the forest, theatre productions, dabbling her toes in the cold North Sea and the vibrant city of London where you can experience all four seasons in a day , she is a hater of pantomime (so please don’t tar and feather her), duplicitous people, bigotry and self-righteous idiots.

In an ideal world, Susan Mac Nicol would be Queen of England and banish all the bad people to the Never Never Lands of Wherever -Who Cares. As that’s never going to happen, she contents herself with writing her HEA stories and pretending, that just for a little while, good things happen to good people.

Sue is a PAN member of Romance Writers of America and is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association in the UK.

My links

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The Detective’s Pleasure by Christa Tomlinson : Release Day Exclusive Interview and Giveaway

TDP SMALL PREVIEW(1)synopsis

Officer Ryan Bennett: He’s pursuing his dream of being promoted to Houston’s elite SWAT team with a single mindedness that won’t accept any outcome but success. But that’s not all he dreams of. Ryan wants more than a coveted position on SWAT. He wants to be owned by a strong Dominant. To give himself up to a Dom who will make him shudder with pleasure beneath a firm yet loving hand. Unfortunately, Ryan has had nothing but failure in that part of his life. Now, he’s hidden that dream away from everyone, including himself. And he refuses to let anyone close enough to see what he truly wants, and who he truly is.

Detective Sam Roberts: Cool and calm, Detective Sam Roberts is good at reading people. That’s why he sees past the hard layer of arrogance surrounding Ryan Bennett to the hurt submissive hiding beneath. He wants to help Ryan, even though the stubborn young man resists him. But Sam isn’t one to back down from a challenge. He’s determined to help Ryan embrace the soft, giving nature of his submissive side. Sam knows he can do it. What he doesn’t know is just how far they’ll both have to go in order to make that happen.

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Five-ish good questions with Christa Tomlinson (I know…its’ not Friday, but I like to pretend every day is Friday!)

(A sometimes feature on Two Chicks Obsessed with Books and Eye Candy)

  1. Let’s start with serious: The Sergeant was a HUGE book, it really hit so many people’s must read list, and I know people who have re-read it multiple times (not just me!). How difficult is it to try to follow up book 1 with another book that must be read.

Very difficult! I actually had a bit of a crisis because I was so concerned about trying to follow The Sergeant. I didn’t realize for a long time just how loved Logan and Clay were. But when I did, it hit me that I had a lot to live up to for Ryan and Sam. As I was writing their story I tried to force them to be like Logan and Clay. Ha! That didn’t work. When I finally let Ryan and Sam be themselves, their story unfolded and I fell in love with them.

  1. What is your vision of what Ryan and Sam look like? Do you have celebrity inspirations/crushes for these two characters?

ryan1 Ryan is young and average height but in really good shape. He has pale blonde hair and gray eyes. My celebrity ryan2crushes for him were Ryan Harrison from Queer as Folk and Chord Overstreet from Glee. Sam is my big, tall Texan. He’s a brunette with denim blue eyes and a low beard. Sam is relaxed and easy going with a naturally lean body and a slow Texas drawl. So of course Matthew McConaughey was my inspiration for him.

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  1. The cover of The Detective’s Pleasure is clearly Ryan. Tell us the significance of the cover for you, and how it relates to the story.

I love the cover for TDP. It was done by Jay Aheer and out of all the covers she’s done for me so far, it’s my favorite. Capturing the tone of a book is very important in the cover. I’m not ashamed to admit that I write some moody, angsty shit. The darkness and shadows of this cover really convey that tone. I also love the pose of the model. He looks so vulnerable with his lashes lowered and the slight pout on his mouth. It makes me want to cry for Ryan. Excuse me while I get emotional…

  1. Sex scenes are not easy to write. And if writing is your full time gig, life sometimes gets in the way. What is your “method” to “get in the mood” to write a sex scene? How do you deal with it all?

Oh, sex scenes. I think it’s hilarious that I’m good at writing them when I’m such an introverted and modest geek. To get ready to write them I have to have music. No way I could write anything sexy while listening to my dogs wrestling or the garbage truck racing over the speed bumps behind my christahouse as LOUD AS POSSIBLE. Listening to music helps block all that out and I always choose a song that helps set the tone for the scene I’m writing. If I want a soft, sweet scene, I go with Ed Sheeran Kiss Me. For passionate sexy times I like Sail by AWOLNATION. And for anything emotionally rough and turbulent, Marilyn Manson Tainted Love is my go to. Of course, going back and polishing a sex scene is another matter altogether. I normally end up doing it like this because I’m so embarrassed reading what I wrote:

  1. Now, for the fun one. You call me to bail you out of jail. Oh, who are we kidding, you would be my call to bail ME out of jail…so what three things would you bring me? 🙂

Haha! Well, number one is pants. Because I don’t know what went down, but I’m sure you somehow lost your pants. A bottle of wine in case you need a little Hair of the Dog and of course the cash to bail you out. So keep it to a misdemeanor. I hate going into the bank and the ATMs only allow you to take so much out.

Thank you, Denise! This was fun.

Christa

**You can find more on The Detective’s Pleasure here.**

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We are giving away three arcs for The Detective’s Pleasure. Comment on this blog post with your favorite sexy song, what you would write to, if you could. 🙂

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