Reservations by Kindle Alexander: Blog Tour, Review, and Giveaway

Genre: M/M Romance
Release Date: October 30, 2017

Wildly successful entrepreneur, Thane Walker is stubbornly set in his ways. Adamantly resistant to the shackles of commitment, he’s seen enough unhappy endings to learn the best way to play is by keeping his men on the payroll.

Levi Silva’s dream of graduating from one of the country’s top medical schools is in his grasp, until news from home changes everything. Now, he’s raising his two teenage brothers and trying to keep everyone’s head above water, emotionally and financially.

When Levi’s new job puts him in Thane’s path, their chemistry explodes, but their fear of being involved in relationships keeps them apart. Unfortunately, despite the intense desire drawing them together, neither man can move forward until they get past their own…Reservations.

Amazon Review – ““Reservations” by Kindle Alexander is a rare gem in the world of M/M Romance, because it is genuinely compelling story telling!”

Amazon Review – “Thane & Levi stole my heart!!”

Amazon Review – “Thane and Levi!! Simply amazing”

Amazon Review – “A beautifully written love story that is guaranteed to melt you heart!”

 

 

I love Kindle Alexander’s books so I was not so patiently waiting for this book to release. I like how past characters always pop up throughout the book and thoroughly enjoy reading about them again.

Levi has had to put his dreams of finishing med school on the back burner and return home to raise his two younger brothers after his father loses his battle with cancer. Levi is working as a physical therapist and a coffee shop but can barely keep them afloat. When Levi gets word that the coffee shop is going out of business he is left scrambling to find another job until one of his past patients makes him an offer that is too good to be true.

Thane is the owner of Reservations, a club for gay men to mingle, dance, eat dinner or find a partner for the night in a safe space. Thane has the whole world in his grasp and has never found someone that couldn’t be bought until he sets his sights on Levi and finds out that not everything has a price.

In order for Thane to get what he wants he will need to stop wielding his money like a sword and trying to slay all of Levi’s dragons for him. Levi is as independent as they come, bordering on control freak so Thane will have to prove he’s serious before Levi will let him in. Just when Thane and Levi begin to figure it all out someone from Levi’s past shows back up to upset the delicate balance that they were just starting to enjoy.

Such a great read, it was a really long book but the story moved along at a decent pace the whole time. There weren’t any parts where I felt like the story dragged along. I think the length helped Levi overcome his fears and put the doubts to rest without it feeling rushed or like he let Thane strong arm him. The execution was well done!

Levi: Such a great character. Nurturing to his brothers, he never makes them feel guilty that he’s put his schooling on hold. Independent and strong, I love that about him. Even though he’s struggling he never takes what Thane is trying to give because he has such strong self worth.

Thane: Billionaire playboy. Jaded by his parents failed relationship he only has time to entertain escorts, never wanting feelings to get involved. Once he finds out that his parents relationship is not what he remembers it causes him to re-think his whole outlook. I love his tenacity, he never stopped pursuing Levi, however whenever Levi said he was uncomfortable with something Thane stopped and reflected and came at him from a different angle.

This story is full of great new characters, Aunt Linda is one of my favorites, but we also get to see old favorites. Tristan and Dylan and Kellus and Arick make a few appearances. I really think it’s time for me to re-read some old favorites.

5 pieces of eye candy

Best Selling Author Kindle Alexander is an innovative writer, and a genre-crosser who writes classic fantasy, romance, suspense, and erotica in both the male/male and male/female genres. It’s always a surprise to see what’s coming next!

I live in the suburbs of Dallas where it’s true, the only thing bigger than an over active imagination, may be women’s hair!

Usually, I try for funny. Humor is a major part of my life – I love to laugh, and it seems to be the thing I do in most situations – regardless of the situation, but jokes are a tricky deal… I don’t want to offend anyone and jokes tend to offend. So instead I’m going to tell you about Kindle.

I tragically lost my sixteen year old daughter to a drunk driver. She had just been at home, it was early in the night and I heard the accident happen. I’ll never forget that moment. The sirens were immediate and something inside me just knew. I left my house, drove straight to the accident on nothing more than instinct. I got to be there when my little girl died – weirdly, I consider that a true gift from above. She didn’t have to be alone.

That time in my life was terrible. It’s everything you think it would be times about a billion. I love that kid. I loved being her mother and I loved watching her grow into this incredibly beautiful person, both inside and out. She was such a gift to me. To have it all ripped away so suddenly broke me.

Her name was Kindle. Honest to goodness – it was her name and she died a few weeks before Amazon released their brand new Kindle ereader. She had no idea it was coming out and she would have finally gotten her name on something! Try finding a ruler with the name Kindle on it.. It never happened.

Through the course of that crippling event I was lucky enough to begin to write with a dear friend in the fan fiction world of Facebook. She got me through those dark days with her unwavering support and friendship. There wasn’t a time she wasn’t there for me. Sometimes together and sometimes by myself, we built a world where Kindle lives and stands for peace, love and harmony. It’s its own kind of support group. I know without question I wouldn’t be here today without her.

Find out more by visiting www.kindlealexander.com or email me at kindle@kindlealexander.com


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Snowcroft Restoration by Christi Snow: Release Day Review with Giveaway

Two years ago, Law Wyman went undercover for an FBI investigation that went sideways. It cost him both the love of his life and his sanity. The nightmare still haunts him, and so does some unfinished business…Ian Mayne, the son of the man who ruined his life.

Two years ago, Ian had to face the truth about how his father spent a lifetime torturing and trafficking LGBTQ teens. Ever since, Ian has done everything he can to make up for his dead father’s many sins through his law enforcement job. Too many paid in horrific, horrible ways at his father’s hands while Ian kept the truth about his own sexuality hidden.

Law is doing all he can to save Ian, but Ian doesn’t necessarily want to be saved.

Two men…both horrifically haunted by what happened. Is it possible they can find healing together? Only if they have the courage to face their demons and each other…

Trigger Warning: This is a hot story about two men who have both survived past abuse.

All the details…
Title: Snowcroft Restoration
Series: Book #4 in the Snowcroft Men series
Genre: male/male romantic suspense
Book length: ~94,268 words
Release date: November 15, 2017

1. Snowcroft Lost

2. Snowcroft Safehouse

3. Intertwined Hearts

4. Snowcroft Restoration

Amazon

Everywhere else

Goodreads

I think every reader goes through phases in their reading. You may go through a stretch where all you want are sweet stories, with puppies, ice cream and rainbows. Other times you want some kink, and you read everything you can get your hands on. Lately, I have been on a mystery/suspense kick (Thanks C.S. Poe!), and anything in this sub-genre has been voraciously read by this reviewer. And then you add in that Christi Snow wrote it, well, you didn’t need to ask me twice. This even though I knew at some point I would be curled in a fetal position on the couch, freezing to death cause I didn’t want to leave to get a blanket. (It’s happened more than once…). I snatched up Snowcroft Lost the very first day it came out, and have loved Christi’s stuff ever since. Waiting for Law’s book was a little bit of torture for me.

Law had been through so much, it was tough to read again just how much he had been through. He definitely needed some time to heal, learn to deal with his PTSD and grief, and how to recover mentally and physically from the torture and loss he endured for week’s as a result of his FBI undercover operation. The man he had loved had given his own life to save Law’s. That is a sacrifice that is beyond loving, and yet can leave survivor’s guilt. Taking the time he needed, and not rushing himself back to work, or whatever his next steps would be, allowed him to work through as much as he could with his therapist. However, even from the beginning of the book, you could see that he was ready to come back to the world of the living, to step into what would be his new life.

Ian, meanwhile, had been through many similar situations as Law, from his father’s extreme punishments to finally finding out what his father truly did with the camp that he kept in Snowcroft. He had his own form of PTSD, and had managed to work through most of it on his own. Ian came through the torture and the pain of growing up with his horrific father with such a positive personality. He spent his entire life trying to make up for what his father did, by trying to save his friend, working for the Forestry Service, even his choices with regards to the camp he inherited.

These two men didn’t just work on solving the case that brought them together in the first place, but really tried to connect with each other to find what they needed to make their relationship work. Even when the unthinkable would happen (and it did several times-one of those times ended with me in that fetal position spoken of previously), rather than hiding, or running away, they connected back to their bonds and found what they needed to move forward.

This author knows how to write suspense so well. There were a few times in the book that I swore I knew what was going to happen next…until it happened, and I looked up from kindle wondering where that came from, why didn’t I see it? Then two chapters later, something else happens, and I am shocked once more. She weaves in the mystery, some guns, maybe a bomb or two throughout this series, and you never quite know what to expect. As a reader, that is exactly what I want. I want to walk in knowing I am going to have a great story, and have no freaking idea where it will lead to. Small spoiler...what she did with the house…the visuals I had…that is some fantastic writing to get me there, cause houses are not supposed to do that-ever. (That’s all I’m saying…you will know what I mean when you read this book).

There’s definitely some hotness with these two, although very carefully written considering the traumas Law been through. So well done here, too. The reader got some smoking hot scenes, yet intertwined with the caring and the necessity to acknowledge how difficult this was for Law. It helped to bring Law and Ian closer, even as they had to use some additional therapy options to find a way to not let each other go. Great research on the part of the author.

Few characters deserved a happy ending more than these two men, and I am so glad I finally got to read it. And now…now I am looking forward to seeing what Christi does with _ and _ (I can’t tell you, but when you read it, you will know who…), because how do you redeem a character when you have seen them _ someone’s _ with a _. 😉

Without question another 5 pieces of eye candy read for me, from the amazing Christi Snow. How she has time to write with all her reading, I will never know, but I am thankful she does! Bring on Snowcroft Book 5!!!!

TCO is giving away an ebook of Christi’s (even Snowcroft Restoration), in honor of her release day. Just respond with which of her books is my (Denise’s) favorite. (pppsssstttt…it’s a trick question, because I love all her books and I couldn’t possibly pick one). Anyway, name any one of them, and you’re entered. 🙂

 

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Wrapped With Love by Beth Bolden: Release Day Review, Blitz and Excerpt

Wrapped with Love RDB Banner

WRAPPED WITH LOVE

A FIVE POINTS NOVEL

BETH BOLDEN

M/M ROMACE

RELEASE DATE: 11.14.17

Silhouetted of coconut tree

NFL player Jordan Christensen walks into Reed Ryan’s restaurant without a reservation. It isn’t the most serendipitous of meet-cute’s and they certainly aren’t the likeliest of romances, but over venison steaks and crème brûlée, they fall in love anyway.

Flash forward two years . . .

Jordan isn’t a football player anymore.

Reed sold his restaurant.

But even more drastically, they’ve lost each other.

When Reed moves to Los Angeles take a new job, he doesn’t realize Jordan now works at the same company. But Jordan definitely realizes how precious the second chance fate has bestowed on them is. He’s determined to make up for everything that fell apart the first time around, and it turns out he’s not the only one scheming to right old wrongs.

Starting a new career is always difficult but sharing office space—and big projects—with an old lover is particularly rough. Between impromptu Secret Santa exchanges, Christmas light viewings, and more tacos than even Reed can eat, the two former lovers have an eventful holiday season to navigate.

Amazon – Kindle Unlimited

 

I hadn’t read anything by this author before, but usually if there is something sports related with it, I am all in (interestingly that is exactly how I stumbled upon the m/m genre in the first place), so I jumped on this one. Adding in a second chance romance, one of my favorite tropes to read, and it was definitely going to be mine to review.

Although I could tell fairly quickly into the story that it was part of a series, the author did a good job of keeping it a stand-alone, with other characters dropping in, or referencing past events with explanation. The reader could develop connections with the previous characters despite not having spent any time with them. (There is one character in particular-I won’t name names-who was a sweet matchmaker with a bit of a snarky side, I loved him!).

However, I will say I was confused about the relationship with the MC’s. I was never quite sure, throughout the book, exactly WHY they broke up. I found myself wondering when the “big reveal” as to the real reason was going to happen, and it never quite felt like I got it. It was clear they loved each other, and then they moved to LA once Jordan was traded from Chicago to Los Angeles. Then it is a bit murky for me. It seemed they had reasons, yet didn’t quite have enough of them to cause two men who were so much in love to suddenly just break up. Reed just left, and Jordan just let him, and they didn’t speak again until Reed turns up at a job where Jordan works (I still am unclear how Jordan was quite qualified to be a writer for a popular show). It doesn’t take long for them to begin to work their way back

This story takes the reader between their past relationship, and their current, and back again, so the reader can see how one thing caused another (the story about the Harry Potter scarf was awesome!). This helped me to understand some of where these men were coming from. In the end, though, I still felt like it was more that the men gave up on each other the first time, and wondered how they wouldn’t the second time.

I did enjoy the Secret Santa storyline-and the surprise around it, that I never saw coming-and it isn’t what you think!

In the end, 3 pieces of eye candy. I enjoyed it, and would like to read a full book from this author, as I did like her writing style as well.

improbable love

“So,” Rory continued, still shoving hummus into his face at an alarming rate, “how did you two meet? Because I gotta say, Reed barely sticks his head out of the kitchen for more than five minutes at a time.”

“We actually met at Garnet,” Jordan said, all gooey affection, like the first night they’d met, Reed hadn’t accidentally insulted him.

“Oh?” Rory asked, all creamy innocence because he knew how much Reed hated being summoned to the dining room.

“It’s actually really embarrassing. My agent knew how much I’d been wanting to visit Garnet, and just barged in, no reservation. And Reed,” Jordan glanced over, “was kind enough to give us the private dining room. Picked our menu for us and everything. I had to meet him, after all that trouble he went to.”

Rory burst out laughing and Reed shifted uncomfortably in his chair. He had a bad feeling about where this was going.

“You realize why he actually came out of the kitchen, right? Why he picked your menu?”

Jordan shook his head, a baffled expression on his handsome face.

Rory leaned forward. “Let me educate you about the ego of a chef, Christensen. Reed didn’t give you his best table and his best food out of the kindness of his heart. He did it because he wanted to put you in your place with his awesomeness.”

“I’m trying to remember why I invited you out,” Reed interrupted before Rory’s education could continue. But Jordan, intrigued, ignored him, and Rory was never going to stop now that he’d started. Reed flopped back in his chair, somewhat resigned to the inevitable embarrassment to come.

“Reed doesn’t have an ego.”

Rory’s head actually whipped back as he cackled loudly. “Oh, honey. All chefs do, at least the best ones. It’s how we get to the top. We’re insufferably certain of our own perfection. At least in the kitchen, anyway. Garnet is Reed’s castle, and he’s the king.”

Jordan turned to Reed, who could only hold his breath and pray that Rory’s comments hadn’t completely changed his opinion.

“Is that true?” he asked.

“I mean, you can’t be that surprised,” Reed said awkwardly. “Especially after what I said when we met.”

“I thought you were trying to hit on me!” Jordan exclaimed in mock outrage.

Reed flushed.

“I hate to say it,” Rory said, which was a complete lie because he looked like he was enjoying every second of this, “but Reed doesn’t have that kind of game.”

“So, how did you two meet?” Jordan asked, and Reed wasn’t dumb enough not to know he was changing the subject. He told himself it would be okay. Jordan couldn’t be angry about how they’d met, so many months later.

“A butchering class,” Reed said.

“No, not even close,” Rory said, taking another drink from his beer. “You aren’t going to get off this easy, Reed.”

Reed made a disgruntled sound. Of course Rory felt obligated to tell the whole story.

“Yes, it was a butchering class,” Rory said, gesturing with the bottle in his hand. “And you know, I’m formally trained. I mostly took it for fun. But here’s Reed, a newbie who’s read at least fifteen books on his own at this point. He spent at least half the class telling the instructor everything he was doing wrong.”

Reed couldn’t help but frown. Jordan glanced over, ever-attuned to Reed, and reached under the table to squeeze his knee.

“Was the instructor wrong?” Jordan asked loyally, even though if he knew Reed at all, he already knew the answer to his question.

Rory laughed and nodded. “Oh, he was insanely wrong. The rest of us were just ready to write this whole class off as a bad afternoon and go have some drinks later and laugh about it, but Reed was burning with the injustice of wasting an afternoon being taught what he knew was the wrong thing.”

“So he tried to teach the class.” Jordan glanced over, eyes brimming with affection. As if this story, which definitely wasn’t one of the greatest moments of Reed’s life, actually endeared him further.

“It was a power struggle, from beginning to end, but,” Rory said, tipping the bottle in a mock toast Reed’s direction, “you already know who came out on top.”

“He was wrong,” Reed felt justified in adding again.

Jordan’s hand settled warm and firm back on Reed’s knee. Reed jumped, nearly upsetting his own beer. “I wouldn’t expect any less, sweetheart,” he said quietly.

 

Beth Bolden Logo

Beth Bolden lives in Portland, Oregon with her supportive husband and their beloved cat. She wholly believes in Keeping Portland Weird, but wishes she didn’t have to make the yearly pilgrimage up to Seattle to watch her Boston Red Sox play baseball. She’s a fan of fandoms, and spends too much of her free time on tumblr.

Beth has been writing practically since she learned the alphabet. Unfortunately, her first foray into novel writing, titled Big Bear with Sparkly Earrings, wasn’t a bestseller, but hope springs eternal. She’s published three novels and two short stories, with her next novel, The Rainbow Clause, releasing in April 2017.

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Snowflakes & Cinnamon Buns by Claire Castle: Exclusive Excerpt and Pre-Release Day Review

Cameron Pearce loves to work hard and play hard. Living in New York City, means lots of men and lots of variety. He isn’t looking for love.

When he goes to his small hometown Dickensville for Christmas, food, friends, family and seeing his best friend Levi are what’s on the agenda. He also hopes for some friends-with-benefits enjoyment.

Levi Jones owns and runs his own café in Dickensville. He loves the Christmas season and all that comes with it. Decorating, baking, and snow among other things. Another perk is when Cameron visits home and he gets him all to himself.

What will happen when true feelings are revealed and everything is put on the line. Will their friendship survive?

Can best friends go from hooking up to a real relationship? Do they even want to?

This book contains delicious cinnamon buns, a cute westie and sexy hot men to warm up your holidays.

As I lay in bed the next morning after an incredible night of hot sex, I thought how amazing it was to be so relaxed and in tune with someone. To know their body and what they wanted and needed and for them to know the same about me. We were incredible together. I was almost sad that our time was nearly over, though I always knew it would come to an end. It was for the best. Commitment involved risk and I was very risk averse. To put your love and devotion into someone and have them up and leave you, would be devastating. I preferred to know what was going on. Know where I stood.  Not very romantic, for sure, but that was the way I had always been.
I peeked out the curtain as my musing continued and saw snow. I sprang out of bed and ran to find Levi. I got excited for snow, like a big kid. So sue me. Belatedly, I realized I was still naked. I grabbed one of Levi’s hoodies, boots, and my pajama pants and opened the front door. Wow, it had snowed again overnight. Quite a bit too. It made everything look more beautiful. I raced down the path and threw snow up in the air. I heard movement behind me and knew it must be Levi. He started to say something when I threw a snowball at him. Uh oh, he had no shirt on. That must be cold as fuck.
His nipples looked like they could cut glass. I had no idea what the saying was about the cold and shrinkage or not but I stared at his bulge as his sleep pants tented.
“You will pay for this.” He threw a snowball at me and ran down the front steps. He had been smart and bundled up in a jacket. Rory sprung around beside him, bounding through the blanket of white, kicking up the snow as he went. Levi ran behind a tree, but I still tried taking aim. The ball hit the side of the tree. Damn. As I crept closer, Levi snuck around the back somehow and shoved a big ball of snow down my pants.
“Oh my gawd, you bastard!” My teeth chattered. I ran and grabbed him and pulled him down into the snow. We were both rolling around and he ended up on top of me. “You are way too heavy,” I joked as I reached up and kissed his nose.
“Hey that’s my line.” He jumped up to run in the house and Rory followed him.
Laughing, I ran in after him. Rory looked up at me as if I was a crazy man and Levi had about the same look on his face. “What, it was fun, admit it!” I said, grinning through the shiver that rolled through my body.
“You are crazy,” he said. “I think it’s cute, your love of the snow.”
“I know, ” I said, sauntering away.
“Toast” he asked?
“No cinnamon buns this morning?”
He laughed before telling me to get some warm dry clothes on, and then said he would make coffee. “Maybe then you won’t be so demanding.”
“Me, demanding? Never.”

 

Amazon – Kindle Unlimited

 

A very short little Christmas read…

Cameron is coming home for the holiday’s and he needs the break from his “work hard, play hard” type of lifestyle… We don’t see that, it’s just kind of self-proclaimed. When he gets back into town, he stops by at his childhood friend Levi’s house first…. They have a kind of FWB relationship when he comes to town…. It’s hot, if a little cheesy…but it seems to work for them. Cameron spends the whole holiday with Levi, doing things together and catching up, like friends do.

However, I’m kind of on the fence about this one because while I do like friends to lovers and second chancers… I thought Cameron was extremely selfish. Nobody is that clueless, he had to have known that Levi had feelings for him, but for a second, lets say he didn’t know… he was possessive and jealous when he thought someone else was flirting with Levi, he was really boyfriend-y, acting as if they were together, even AFTER Levi told him that he loved him. He might’ve been pulling away in his head, but he wasn’t at all while they were together…. Cuddling and kissing him the way it was explained. I mean, all the while, knowing he was going to up and leave. How selfish is that?!!!

Then….he stays away for A YEAR…. Not a couple weeks while he gets himself together, not a couple months, realizing how much he misses and loves Levi back, nope…. A whole entire year!!! And Levi, pshhh. Make him work for it, man… when he does come back ….AFTER A YEAR… he’s all arms wide open and forgiving, like he didn’t just leave you high and dry, no contact for THE LAST YEAR!

Am I the only one with a problem with alla that??? I mean before they were FWB, they were supposed to at least be friends, best friends actually…. But you don’t have any contact with him for a year after he tells you how he feels about you? That’s cool….

Anyway, alls well that ends well I guess… it does have a HEA ending that too, is cheesy but cute. I just can’t get over all the stuff in the middle.

3 pieces of eye candy from me.

Claire Castle grew up surrounded by books. She has loved reading for her whole life. Her true love is romance and HEAs. When she’s not reading or writing, she can be found wearing comfortable leggings, drinking mocha and petting her west highland terrier. She loves collecting awesome mugs and paperbacks of her favorite stories.

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Twitter: @CCastleAuthor

Email: Clairecastle_author@yahoo.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.

Fortune’s Slings and Cupid’s Arrows by Ari McKay: Exclusive Guest Post, Release Day Review with Giveaway

Successful attorneys Dane Coulter and Cal Monroe are rivals in the courtroom and friends behind the scenes. But can they be more?

Cal’s always carried a torch for Dane, but Dane is so deep in the closet, he can’t even admit that he might be gay. His father, a raging homophobe who rules the family with an iron fist, forces Dane into an engagement—to a woman. Dane goes along with it to keep the peace and protect his mother, but for Cal, it’s the last straw.

He can’t let Dane make a mistake that could ruin the rest of his life, and he only knows one surefire way to make Dane admit what’s in his heart. But confessing his feelings to his friend could backfire, driving a wedge between them. And even then, the choice must be Dane’s—to live the life his father wants, or to give up everything he has for a chance at happiness in Cal’s arms.

Amazon

Dreamspinner Press

Barnes & Noble

Kobo Books

 

Greetings, everyone! Ari here, the red-haired half of Ari McKay. I’d like to thank Two Chicks Obsessed for having me here on the blog today to promote our re-release of Fortune’s Slings and Cupid’s Arrows, book two in the Lawyers in Love trilogy!

Even though this is a re-release, we wanted to bring attention to the story because we have rewritten it almost completely from its original form. We were never completely satisfied with the original story, but it took some time and distance — as well as some growth as writers — for us to be able to put our fingers on exactly what it was that didn’t sit right with us. It’s always interesting as a writer to look back at early works and see how we’ve changed and evolved over time. When Dreamspinner offered us the chance to revisit our Lawyers in Love stories, it seemed like fate was stepping in to tell us that we needed to give Cal and Dane’s story new life, to fix what we’d sensed was wrong but had never been able to fully identify. We tossed around several ideas, but it was McKay who was able to finally pinpoint the moment in the story where things started to go wrong. It turns out that when we shifted one of the first scenes from Cal’s POV to Dane’s, everything just sort of fell into place the way it should have from the first.

At it’s heart, this is a story about lawyer Dane Coulter finding the strength to break free of the mold his father has forced him into and begin to live life on his own terms. But it’s also about Cal Monroe, who is in love with Dane, and the strength Cal has to find within himself to take a step back and give Dane room grow at his own pace. Cal recognizes that in his own way he’s just as strong willed as Dane’s father, and he’s aware that Dane might feel that he’s stepping out of his father’s shadow and into Cal’s. When you love someone, doing the thing that is right and best for them is easy when it’s also what you want to do; it says a lot about a person, I think, if they can do what’s right for the person they love, even if they know they might end up with a broken heart in the end.

I don’t want to give away too much, especially since the story is a novella rather than a novel, but both McKay and I hope that if you like stories about someone breaking free of the bonds of obligation and making their own path, you’ll find Dane and Cal’s journey to be worth your time.

The premise for Fortune’s Slings and Cupid’s Arrows roped me in. Dane’s the rich kid whose daddy controls his life. Cal’s the man who’s in love with him, determined to help keep Dane from making a huge mistake.

Now, before I get into everything, let me say this was an enjoyable book. There was nothing that made me think about putting it down. Unfortunately, I did wind up eye rolling a fair bit. The scenario felt forced. The dialogue, at times, too over the top to be believed.

But, Cal did what he set out to do. Not because he waged war against Dane’s dad (which he did), but because Dane realized he couldn’t go through with a marriage out of obligation.

At this point, I still would’ve given the book 3.5 pieces of candy. But then…

The whole book felt like this huge build up, like there should’ve been a massive conflict with dear old dad. But it never happened. Once Dane goes after what he wants, we jump forward in time and they all live happily ever after.

I suppose, that’s the whole point of reading a romance, but in the end, I had  more questions than answers. I was left wanting more, not because I was so in love with Dane and Cal, but because the story felt unfinished.

3 pieces of candy

 

Ari McKay is the professional pseudonym for Arionrhod and McKay, who have been writing together for over a decade. Their collaborations encompass a wide variety of romance genres, including contemporary, fantasy, science fiction, gothic, and action/adventure. Their work includes the Blood Bathory series of paranormal novels, the Herc’s Mercs series, as well as two historical Westerns: Heart of Stone and Finding Forgiveness. When not writing, they can often be found scheming over costume designs or binge watching TV shows together.

Arionrhod is a systems engineer by day who is eagerly looking forward to (hopefully) becoming a full time writer in the not-too-distant future. Now that she is an empty-nester, she has turned her attentions to finding the perfect piece of land to build a fortress in preparation for the zombie apocalypse, and baking (and eating) far too many cakes.

McKay is an English teacher who has been writing for one reason or another most of her life. She also enjoys knitting, reading, cooking, and playing video games. She has been known to knit in public. Given she has the survival skills of a gnat, she’s relying on Arionrhod to help her survive the zombie apocalypse.

Website: http://arimckay.wordpress.com

Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Ari-Mckay/266185570179748

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/ari.mckay.7

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AriMcKay1

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6153630.Ari_McKay


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A Sniper’s Devotion by Christa Tomlinson: Release Day Review

Officer Hector Castillo, a sniper on Houston’s elite SWAT team, is content living alone as a perpetual bachelor. But when he opens up his small apartment to a friend in need, their close quarters awaken long suppressed desires Hector can’t help but acknowledge.

Miguel Delgado’s unfortunate detour down a road he never intended to travel ends in a big wake up call, but he vows to get himself back on track. Though he’s always looked up to Hector, Miguel isn’t a kid with hero-worship anymore, and his schoolyard protector has matured into a strong and caring man – who happens to look damn sexy in his SWAT uniform.

Though their physical attraction to each other is undeniable, Hector and Miguel try hard to resist and protect their friendship. Until one night changes everything…

A Sniper’s Devotion is a loving and sexy, friends to lovers erotic romance. Hector and Miguel’s story is part of the Cuffs, Collars and Love series, but it is a stand-alone novel.

Title: A Sniper’s Devotion
Series: Cuffs, Collars and Love #5
Author: Christa Tomlinson
Publisher: Self published
Release Date: November 7, 2017
Heat Level: 4 – Lots of Sex
Pairing: Male/Male
Length: 77,500
Genre: Romance, Friends to Lovers, Multicultural Romance, Hispanic Main Characters, Spanking, Stand Alone

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Oh, how I’m in love with this series!

For me, I didn’t think there was any topping Logan and Clay, but I think Hector and Miguel might be my new favorite! Hector, we remember from the other books, is part of the SWAT team, with Clay and Ryan. I always thought he was hilarious, but never expected him to have his own story, really surprised me in this one…I felt like he was so different once we got to know him more. Oh yeah, he’s not as straight as we thought either! That was made apparent when his mom and her best friend, showed up at his place with his childhood friend Miguel.

Miguel had run out after getting knocked around, again, by an abusive boyfriend. Needing a place to hide out where the now ex wouldn’t find him, their mother’s’ brought him to Hector, knowing he’d protect him and look out for him while Miguel tried to start over with only a few hundred dollars in the bank and a small sack of clothes he thought to grab. After being cut off from friends and a job and anything else that might lose him the strong hold he had on the control of Miguels’ life, it was going to be a tough road for him… Luckily, he had Hector.

Now, sidenote, when they were growing up, the two had always crushed on each other, but their friendship was most important and for all intents and purposes, Hector was straight, so that’s all they stayed. However, Hector never stopped taking care of him, and protecting him, always wanting the best for him…. Not until they’d lost touch, but now he was back.

Things between the two were fine, with Miguel trying to find work and trying not to be a burdon on Hector, though Hector saw him as anything but,. He was happy to take care of him, do things for him to help him get on his feet, that’s the kind of person he is. I loved that about him. But, Miguel, who’d just got out of a relationship where he had no control over anything, it caused some problems between them, and I could see how. Theyre relationship also progressed into something that was much more confusing than the both of them knew what to do with, and I understood Miguel’s hesitation…

What I loved, so much, was once Hector came to terms with the fact that he had romantic feelings for his best friend, who was a man…that never wavered. He never questioned it, well, okay… I mean, he did in the beginning, but it still never wavered. He never once lost that devotion to Miguel, even when he was confused or working things out. Sure, he put his foot in it a time or two and made Miguel mad a time or two, but all of his intentions always came from the best place. He cared about Miguel, always had. I loved, loved, loved that!

And of course, things with exes are never easy, Miguel’s didn’t like to lose, so he caused some trouble, forcing some strong feelings from both men, that differed on how they both reacted, and I wanted to shake Miguel, but I also understood. He needed to find himself, and still…Hector never wavered…

Can you see how one might love these two?? I really really did! It’ll be hard to top them for me, no matter who’s next! Though I did enjoy Clays smart mouth in this one and wouldn’t mind some more of him and Logan! This one also wasn’t as heavily BDSM’y and I really liked that too.

Overall, this one was one, very well deserved 5 pieces of eye candy from me! I loved it!

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

Wheels Up by Annabeth Albert: Release Blitz, Excerpt (NSFW), Giveaway and Release Day Review

Their love is forbidden, but their hearts aren’t listening to rules and regulations…

Lieutenant Dustin Strauss is a reformed man. No longer a twentysomething hell-raiser, he’s his SEAL team’s new XO—and a man with a secret. Or seven. He’s kept his bisexual identity under wraps for years, along with his kinky side and a fondness for the military-themed semi-anonymous hookup website Joe4Joe. His latest chat buddy is more than a sexy online distraction—they’re taking their very not-safe-for-work relationship into real time.

Petty Officer Wes Lowe has a smart mouth, a take-charge attitude and an uncanny ability for making things go boom. The life of an enlisted man isn’t always enough to satisfy him, but one wild, no-questions-asked weekend with his online love comes close. When a transfer order comes in, Wes feels ready and centered. He’ll make a good impression on his new SEAL team and keep his growing feelings for Dustin on the down low.

But as they log more time online and some very real emotions surface, Dustin and Wes struggle to pretend they’re just a harmless fling. And when his commander introduces Dustin to his team’s newest member, they’re in for the shock of a lifetime…and a crushing disappointment: their difference in ranks means even a friendship without sexual contact could end their navy careers for good.

With their hearts on the line, Dustin and Wes may not survive their next mission, let alone find a way toward a future together.

Title: Wheels Up

Series: Out of Uniform #4

Publisher: Carina Press

Release Date (Print & Ebook): November 6th, 2017

Subgenre: M/M Contemporary Military Romance

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He’d seen Wes’s chest before on camera, but the camera was fuzzy, missing key details like how Wes’s nipples were the exact color of Dustin’s favorite butterscotch toffee and how his collar bones looked made for biting. And the camera had never captured the force of Wes’s stare, the way he seemed to see past Dustin’s soul to his most secret of desires.

“Think you could get your cock out for me?” Wes’s voice was as seductive as a kiss, and his eyes never left Dustin.

Using his left hand, Dustin got an awkward grip on his cock, drew it out, waited for the next command.

“You’re doing so good for me,” Wes praised. “Pinch a nipple for me, nice and hard, and I might let you touch your cock.”

“Oh fuck.” Dustin absolutely loved when Wes played like his, and being able to look at his intense face while he made such dirty commands was the best head trip ever. Following orders, he used his left hand to pinch his right nipple, hard enough to make himself gasp.

“Twist it. More.” Wes leaned forward, arms resting on his knees.

“Hurts,” Dustin panted. He’d had worse pain, of course, but somehow deliberate pain like this was a far different beast than the ordinary wear and tear he took over the course of training or a mission.

“That’s right. Doing good.” Wes’s blue eyes were almost black now. “You’ve earned a stroke, but slowly.”

“Yes. Thank you.” Dustin’s eyes squished shut as his hand connected with his throbbing cock.

“No, look at me,” Wes commanded, and Dustin’s eyes snapped back open.

He stroked himself with a firm grip, but slowly like Wes wanted. He had to squeeze hard on the base because he was that close to the edge. “Oh God.” His voice broke.

“Yeah? Tell me what you want.” Wes was breathing hard, the only sign that he wasn’t immune to Dustin’s show.

“I’m close.” Dustin’s whole body trembled as he repeated the slow stroke upward on his cock.

“No, you’re not.” Wes’s voice was stern, his eyes like granite chunks. “Tell me. Tell me what you want.”

Usually this was where Dustin would start begging to come, admitting to progressively kinkier fantasies, but instead the truth tumbled out. “Touch me. Oh, God, touch me please.”

Hey hot cover!

Okay, first things first… if there isn’t an APP like Joe4Joe… there should be…

In this one, Dustin (Dylan’s brother, remember him? From At Attention? Gorgeous and Broody? Yeah, this is him.) Anyway, I didn’t understand his hesitation with everybody knowing his ‘’orientation’’ because his hello, remember the brother?? But, whatevs, to each their own personal journey, and I do not judge, I felt for him immensely.

Wes, is also on the app and he and Dustin had been talking for several long months. Being from different sides of the country, what could it hurt, right?? That’s how Dustin viewed it, anyway… Until both of them were supposed to be in the same place at the same time and agreed to meet. Of course, after months of getting to know each other and…..doing other things via video chat… of course they hit it off and had chemistry… lots of it.

All things considered though, as tough as it might be…. It was only a one timer, or it was supposed to be… but what happens when Wes gets transferred and SURPRISE… of anywhere in the world, guess where he gets sent to?….. Yep, same place Dustin is…. (A bit far fetched?? Yeah, okay… but it kinda works, so…just go with it)….. Now, I’m not sure all the rules of the military, but apparently, with some such ranking, you’re not even allowed to be friends with people of different rank… seems silly, but… I’m sure there’s reason’s…. so if theres no friendship possibility, you can guess how a relationship would be tolerated…. It wouldn’t! But, these guys… they cant seem to help themselves… their time together and continued conversations, I would’ve risked it too!

I loved them together, they were hot and Wes was endlessly patient and all the things that Dustin didn’t feel he could be. Wes…sigh…hi Wes!

What I didn’t love was the back and forth…the forbidden sense of it all made them getting together a bad idea and they’d promise this time was the last time, because their careers were in jeopardy if anyone found out…but then, they’d do it again and then feel bad about it. It was angsty and unfair the situation that tried to keep these two apart and then you throw in some dangerous situations and it had me in a near panic attack a time or two…I got very invested, and I love stories like that!!

I will say, that Dylan and Apollo continue to be my favorite in this series, but I did enjoy these two’s back and forth. While I feel like the HEA was a little…HFN, I’m looking forward to maybe hearing about them in future books.

Overall, 4 pieces of eye candy from me.

 

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.  The #OutOfUniform series joins her critically acclaimed and fan-favorite LGBTQ  romance #Gaymers, #PortlandHeat and #PerfectHarmony series.

To find out what she’s working on next and other fun extras, check out her website: www.annabethalbert.com or connect with Annabeth on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Spotify! Also, be sure to sign up for her newsletter for free ficlets, bonus reads, and contests. The fan group, Annabeth’s Angels, on Facebook is also a great place for bonus content and exclusive contests.

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 active children.

Connect with Annabeth: Twitter | Facebook  | Facebook Group | Newsletter | Instagram | Website

 

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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.

Count the Shells by Charlie Cochrane: Quick Review

A standalone Porthkennack historical novel

Michael Gray returned from World War One injured, but at least he returned. Others were not so fortunate, including his first and greatest love, Thomas Carter-Clemence, with whom Michael had parted bitterly before the conflict began.

Broch, the Carter-Clemence home in Porthkennack, was an integral part of pre-war holidays for the Grays, the two families drawn together in the wake of their sons’ friendship. Returning to the once-beloved Cornish coast for a break with his sister and her family, Michael has to find the courage to face old memories . . . and dare new relationships.

When Thomas’s brother Harry makes an unexpected appearance, Michael is surprised to find himself deeply attracted to Harry for his own sake. But as their relationship heats up, it unearths startling revelations and bitter truths. Michael must decide whether Harry is the answer to his prayers or the last straw to break an old soldier’s back.

Word count: 66,000; page count: 246

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This book is part of a series that take place in the English seaside town of Porthkennack. Other authors in the series include Joanna Chambers and Alex Beecroft. This book wasn’t horrible, but it wasn’t my favorite, in the series or otherwise.

Michael is a WWI veteran who’s returned to the summer home his family has stayed at since he was a child. While he has returned mostly unscathed physically, he’s haunted by both his experiences during the war as well as the fact that many of his former lovers and friends were left behind on the battlefields of Europe. He is especially broken over the wartime death of his first lover, Thomas, who died before the two could make amends after a falling out 10 years before. Understandably Michael is filled with regret over the unfinished business between them.

Enter Thomas’ younger brother Harry, whom Michael hasn’t seen in many years and who he remembers as the pesky kid that followed him and Thomas around every summer. But Harry is now older, wiser and considerably more attractive and the two embark on a friendship that quickly turns to more. Secrets involving both families are revealed leaving Michael reeling as he learns that perhaps his relationship with Thomas wasn’t mutually meaningful.

Most of the angst in this story is internal to Michael, as he tries to reconcile what he thought he knew about Thomas and what he’s learned about Thomas from Harry. Michael is also afraid that he may experience the same heartbreak with Harry.

I love that the setting is post-WWI; there aren’t enough gay romances during that time period. I also love that the books in this series take place in the same town at different points in time. The supporting characters are okay; the heroes don’t change much from begin to end. It was a sweet story, but I tend to prefer more external angst and action than the hero having to work things out in his own head before giving me an HEA (which this one does.)

2.5 pieces of eye candy

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Predestination Unknown by Tanya Chris: Quick Review

Luther is almost enjoying a rainy day in Salem, Massachusetts on All Hallow’s Eve when his pursuit of a light-haired, light-skinned guy in a Pilgrim costume sends him crashing back in time to Salem 1692 and the start of the Salem witchcraft trials.

Ezekiel was only going about his chores when a gay, bi-racial man from the future dropped into his life. He doesn’t know Luther is from 2017, not from Boston. He doesn’t know that it’s OK to feel about a man the way he’s coming to feel about Luther. And he has no idea that the wealthy, white men running Salem are about to hang twenty people for the trumped-up crime of witchcraft.

Ezekiel has a lot to learn, both in bed and out, and he’s going to have to get up to speed fast if he and Luther are going to prevent a Colonial American tragedy, one that has already kind of happened. Is our future predestined? Or can Luther and Ezekiel change the course of their country for the better?

Predestination Unknown is a full-length M/M time travel romance featuring a bi-racial man from 2017 who travels back in time to the Salem witchcraft trials.

Content warning: Some unsympathetic secondary characters hold and express racist views. Most of these are immediately refuted by other characters, but a few comments go uncorrected.

Amazon – Kindle Unlimited

 


This is a time travel, historical gay romance where hero Luther is transported back to 1692 Salem just in time for the witch trials. There he meets Ezekiel, a young Puritan who lives with his family on a farm outside town. Ezekiel and his family take Luther in, help him land a job and along the way, Luther and Ezekiel just might change history as they find themselves in the middle of THE witch hunt.

I love the time period, and it’s always interesting to see how an author handles time travel and all that goes with it: the mechanics of the leap, how he realizes he’s traveled, who he meets and how to explain this whole thing to them, how desperate the traveler is to get back, the obstacles he faces (particularly since Luther is a young black man) and to change history or leave it as it was. I don’t actually know much about the attitudes and views of the Puritans except that they were pretty strict, so I’m not even really sure how accepting a family would be for a young black man to come stay with them. Not to mention how easy it would be for a young man of the times to not only acknowledge his homosexuality but to begin a relationship with another man under his family’s and community’s noses. I can’t imagine it would ever happen, and yet I don’t even care.

This was a cute, fun, quick read. I won’t totally spoil the ending except to say that I liked it even though I was a little sad, which isn’t unusual since either someone is leaving their world behind or the heroes go their separate ways.

3 pieces of eye candy

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Reawaken by Christina Lee: Release Day Review and Blitz, Excerpt and Giveaway

Reawaken RDB Banner

REAWAKEN

UNDER MY SKIN SERIES, BOOK 2

CHRISTINA LEE

M/M ROMANCE

RELEASE DATE: 11.02.17

Cover Designer: KANAXA

Goodreads: http://bit.ly/2gtg143

Reawaken_DIGITAL_HighRes

Losing his adoring husband shattered Tristan Rogers world. For the past few years, he’s been going through the motions, running their dog grooming business while hiding the loneliness he feels down to his bones. When he witnesses an ugly breakup between a pretentious customer and his boyfriend, Tristan can’t help but intervene. Something about the unassuming younger man calls to him, and he can’t help wondering if he’s experienced some heartache of his own.

Life took a tragic turn for Jonas “West” Hollis as a teen, and he’s felt indebted to his overbearing lover ever since. Tristan’s kindness draws him from the start, but with his dreams finally in reach, West can’t risk getting close to someone else. Not now that he can live his life and stand on his own merit.

From innocent texts to companionable rides on Tristan’s boat, what starts as an unexpected friendship between the men sparks into undeniable attraction. Neither are ready for anything deeper than a couple of passionate nights wrapped in each other’s arms but their connection becomes too intense for either to ignore. If Tristan and West want to heal their broken hearts, they’ll need a considerable amount of trust and courage—not only in themselves but also each other.

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I’m emotionally drained….this one was a tough one.

First, we have Tristan, who owns Doggy Styles (how cute is that), doggie grooming place. He’s content just going through life after losing him husband a few years back. He’s not really living, just going through the motions, but he still has his husband’s family, and some good friends; Brin and Elijah, you might remember from book 1.

So, content with how things are, he’s surprised when he finds himself interested in West, the hooded guy that comes in with the stuffy suit that talks to everyone like their beneath him. After helping him out one evening and giving him a place to crash, and a bike….they form a sort of much needed phone relationship. They both have so much in common and I think they needed a semblance of friendship that both could offer.

Tristan was endlessly patient and understanding. He let West come to him when he needed him, without any expectations or strings attached to their friendship. Because West’s last relationship with the suit was suffocating and suppressing, he needed the option to go at his own pace.Reawaken Teaser 2

Michael- that’s the suit and you’ll not like him, I’ll tell you that right now. He’s condescending and petty, and I hated that he just never seemed to understand how ugly his personality and character was. I can’t stand people like that. He was so gross. I don’t blame West for needing to get away from him, their relationship wasn’t a healthy one and I feel like the suit more than took advantage of him, no matter which way the author tried to spin it. It wasn’t right. But, whatever… I was glad he got away.

What I didn’t really like (other than Michael) was that I just didn’t feel like West had romantic feelings for Tristan…. I think he needed him and liked the comfort he gave him, but when he popped up out of nowhere and confessed his love to Tristan at the end, I didn’t feel it. Not even a little bit…. I thought Tristan deserved more… Not that West was a bad guy, he wasn’t… not at all, I understood where he was coming from and why he was the way he was… He’d lost so much in his life, he was just trying to find himself… I just don’t like he did and in return, Tristan would just be another co-dependency that he didn’t need. Their relationship just felt a bit one sided to me, I guess…
Maybe I’m wrong… maybe I read too much into it and had too high of hopes for Tristan, I dunno. I did like West, I genuinely felt for him and wanted him to find his happy and if Tristan is that, then I truly think there would be no one better for him…. I just wished I felt that way about West FOR Tristan…

ANYWAY… overall, it was a really good addition to the series and if you like low angst and slow progression… this is your story!

I’m still hoping for Elijah to pull his head out and find him some happy…. Maybe next book??

4 pieces of eye candy from me!

“Take yourself out so I can see you,” West suggested with a devilish gleam, and I did a double-take, marveling at the contradiction. Gone was the moody, unsure kid, only to be replaced by the liberated, playful man filled with hope and mischievousness.

“What—right now?” I looked along the shoreline, and outside of a couple of faraway boats, we were virtually alone. Still, I shook my head. “I can’t—”

“Sure you can,” he replied with a smirk. “You look so impressive manning this boat. Distinguished, even. It would be hot to see you holding your cock while your other hand grips the wheel.”

“Goddamn, West,” I ground out as our eyes met briefly. “Haven’t you come into your own… What happened to my quiet and shy companion?”

He laughed and then shrugged. “Guess he finally went after what he needed. And who he wanted.”

When he curved his eyebrow in challenge, I shivered. My gaze panning the shoreline, I already knew I planned on doing precisely what he asked. Fuck, he knew exactly how to light me up and appeal to my whims—all of which seemed to include him in one fashion or another.

I jerked the throttle and reduced to a slower speed before my hand drifted to my shorts. I tugged them just far enough down that the head of my cock was exposed above the waistband as I gripped my shaft.

“Nice,” he murmured in appreciation as he gazed fixedly at my dick. He stood, sidled next to me, and dragged his fingers along my shoulder blades, making the hairs on my neck stand up. Thankfully there was a glass partition that extended along the sides of the steering wheel, so unless you had a direct view, you wouldn’t realize that I held my cock in my fist.

West’s fingers slid beneath the waistband and into my crease.

“So hot,” he whispered in my ear.

“Fuck,” I groaned, arching my back.

Christina Lee Logo

Mother, wife, reader, dreamer. Christina lives in the Midwest with her husband and son–her two favorite guys. She’s addicted to lip balm, coffee, and kissing. Because everything is better with kissing.

She writes MM Contemporary as well as Adult and New Adult Romance. She believes in happily-ever-afters for all, so reading and writing romance for everybody under the rainbow helps quench her soul.

WEBSITE

http://www.write-brained.com/

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https://www.faceook.com/AuthorChristinaLee/

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