Designs of Desire

Artist James Bryant has forearm crutches in every color from rainbow for fun to sleek black for business. He even has a pair with more paint splatters than metal. After his family’s rejection and abuse from a man he thought loved him, James only just gets through the day by painting. He lives in constant fear that he’s not worthy of anything, let alone love. More »

Simple Desires (part of the Grand Adventures Anthology)

Part of the Desires Entwined series – Ideally read between Designs of Desire and Bound by Desire. When James Bryant and Seth Burns head to Kenosha College to meet with Kenneth and Dane about their gay sports program, Hearts Goals, James’s endurance is tested by a hellion driving a golf cart and a crazy bird. Luckily for James, his work is a hit, and Kenneth and Dane inspire more of his unique, erotic art. More »

Bound By Desire

Part of the Desires Entwined series – Ideally read between Designs of Desire and Desires’ Guardian Despite his past abuse, James has come to terms with his relationship with his Dom and lover Seth. Seth treats James with all the trust and love his sub desires. There is only one thing left to do to make it all complete: Seth needs to put a collar on James. More »

Desires\' Guardian

Most people see Chase Manning as the party-boy twink he seems on the surface. Only James, Chase’s BFF, knows the depth of his loyalty and the extent of the wounds Chase carries inside. When Chase meets Rhys Sayer things don’t go well, but he can’t shake his attraction to the huge, sexy man. More »

 

Blog Tour for Living Again

Blog Tour for Living Again

Hi all,

I’m enjoying my blog tour so far, and have gotten a fair number of responses for my give away. If you haven’t seen any of my other stops on this tour, here’s how the giveaway will work. Comment below, and go to as many sites listed in the blog schedule listed here and comment there as well. Each blog you comment on will earn you one entry for my giveaway. Three prizes will be given. One signed paperback copy, and two electronic copies of Living Again.

Now to talk about other things.

How do you all handle bad reviews? I had gotten only good reviews for Haunted, and even for all those fan fiction stories I wrote before trying my hand at original fiction, so, when I got a bad review for Living Again, it threw me for a loop. Now most every review I’ve seen for it has been positive, and I have received several glowing comments via Facebook, and email; but I got a couple of bad ones on Good Reads. Just from commenters, nothing official, but one bad review has pretty much taken a bunch of people with it. There are several people who have argued with that review because they liked Living Again, and many more who rated it with four and five stars. But, I’m finding that this one bad review is really getting to me.

Their biggest complaint is that there is no explicit, hard-core, sex on the page. But, there was none on page for Haunted, either, and I didn’t get any reviews less than three stars. With each novel I write, I’m inserting more and more sex scenes, but I really don’t want my stories to be just about sex. I like to create emotional connections between the male characters, not just physical ones. Now, I love reading stories with lots of sex scenes, and I’ve read very well written stories that focus on physical connections instead of emotional ones, but that’s not what I write.

The commenter also said that they don’t like that the men have multiple conversations about their hang ups, but the blurb hints at that. Real people often have the same conversations in different ways at different times when a hang up is so deep seated. I want my characters to be real, and real people don’t usually solve their problems with just one conversation. There are misunderstandings, misguided attempts at helping the other get over their hang ups. There are misinterpretations of the other’s actions based on the character’s own past experiences. That’s how real relationships often progress.

Intellectually, I know that no writer can please everyone all the time, and bad reviews are part of the deal. I ultimately write for myself, and I told the story as the muse told it to me, but I find it’s still affecting me. Somehow the comments feel like a personal attack. Now, I know that’s not true. They basically are just saying they don’t like the story (even if they are pretty explicit about it), and that’s certainly their prerogative. I’m concerned, though, that people seem to be jumping on the bandwagon without even reading the story. It doesn’t seem fair somehow…but then, I found out long ago that life usually isn’t.

I’ll get over the shock and the mild depression caused by the negative comments, and I’ll try to focus on the many positive ones. But I’d love some input from other authors.

How do you all handle less than stellar reviews? Have you ever had comments vary so widely from “love it” (5 stars) to “hate it” (1 star)? Has it ever affected your mood? How did you handle your first bad review? Please comment below and let me know. I’m still sort of new to all this, and would love any and all advice.

Below is my Blog Schedule. Thanks so much for stopping by today. Please pay a visit to these other blog sites as well. Don’t forget, the more you comment, the greater your chance of winning a copy of Living Again.

Blog Schedule:

Blog Stop

Date of blog

Name of Host (or Name of Blog)

Address of Blog

1

7/8/2014

Jessica Davies

http://jessicaskyedavies.blogspot.com/2014/07/warm-hearts-relaunch-1-brynn-stein.html

2

7/10/2014

Grace Duncan

http://www.grace-duncan.com/guest-author-brynn-stein/

3

7/11/2014

Emma Tett

http://emmy-j.blogspot.co.uk/2014/07/brynn-stein.html

4

7/14/2014

Tara Lain

http://taralain.com/2014/07/brynn-stein-brings-living-giveaways/

5

7/16/2014

Charlie Cochet’s Tea House

http://purpleroseteahouse.charliecochet.com/brynn-stein-living-again-blog-tour-and-giveaway/

6

7/18/2014

Lex Chase

http://lexchase.com

7

7/21/2014

Anne Barwell

http://annebarwell.wordpress.com/2014/07/22/welcome-brynn-stein/

8

7/22/2014

Suki

http://sukifleet.wordpress.com/2014/07/22/guest-post-brynn-stein/

9

7/24/2014

JP Barnaby

http://www.jpbarnaby.com/?p=2679

10

7/28/2014

Tempest O’Riley

http://tempesteoriley.com/blog/

11

8/4/2014

Kit Moss

http://kitmossreviews.blogspot.com

12

8/7/2014

Michael Rupured

http://rupured.com

13

8/11/2014

Shae Connor

http://shaeconnorwrites.com

14

8/14/2014

Charley Descateaux

http://cdescoteauxwrites.com/blog

15

8/18/2014

Elizabeth Noble

http://www.elizabeth-noble.com/my-blog

16

8/21/2014

Grace Duncan

http://www.grace-duncan.com/graces-blog

Living Again

Daniel Larson has walled himself off from any possibility of romance since his lover died violently five years ago in Afghanistan. The same bomb that ended his partner’s life took the lower part of Daniel’s left leg. The only support Daniel has, his Uncle Lawrence, is dead-set against anything homosexual, including Daniel.

Now, a popular language teacher at the local university, Daniel’s suffering from a car accident that broke his one good leg. His uncle, who is much better at throwing money at things than offering emotional support, provides a rented power chair and a private in-home nurse. Unbeknownst to his uncle, the nurse comes in the form of a man named Jonah Thacker.

Instantly attracted, Daniel and Jonah fight their mutual feelings in favor of professionalism. They become friends anyway, and Jonah shares his life with Daniel, including his handicapped son, Ethan. As Jonah and Daniel grow closer, Daniel becomes more involved in Jonah and his son’s lives, even being there for Ethan when his medical conditions worsen. But when Daniel’s uncle finds out the nurse he’s hired is male, he uses all of his resources to keep Jonah and Daniel apart.

Dreamspinner

http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=5240

Goodreads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22575458-living-again

Brynn’s Bio:

Brynn Stein has always loved to write. Fan fiction, original fiction, whatever. While Brynn wrote in numerous genres—everything from mystery, to contemporary, to supernatural—she had always tended toward strong male characters. And then she discovered “slash,” male/male romance, and all those strong male characters were finally allowed to express their love for one another. It seems that there are always at least two characters clamoring to tell Brynn their story.

Brynn lives in Virginia with one of her two two-legged children, and two four-legged ones. Her supportive family encourages her writing and provides a sounding board for fledgling stories. When she isn’t writing, Brynn teaches children with special needs. In free time, when such a thing exists, she reads anything she can get her hands on, and haunts bookstores. She draws and paints, and enjoys the outdoors—especially if she can get to the beach—and is always thinking about her next story.

Please feel free to contact Brynn at any of the following:

http://brynnstein2.wix.com/books-and-thoughts
https://twitter.com/BrynnStein
http://brynnstein2.wordpress.com
https://www.facebook.com/
brynnstein2@gmail.com

 

“Chasing Sunrise (The Darkmore Saga: Book One)” By Lex_Chase Release Day Blitz

 
 
Chasing Sunrise
(The Darkmore Saga, Bk 1)
by Lex Chase

Blurb:
On the Coastal Bend of Texas, a hidden kingdom called Darkmore lies in ruins, and King Sevon Maraté is trapped. Using Sevon as a mouthpiece and a scapegoat, Lord Dominic rules from the shadows. Sevon copes with the unrelenting abuse by dressing in women’s finery and casting an image of graceful nobility. Born of royal verkolai blood and as beautiful as he is lethal, he possesses the ability to part the Veil separating his world from hundreds of others. His gift is his chance to escape, but Dominic refuses to relinquish his tool for power. Dominic forges an ambitious plan to invade the prosperous land of Priagust. Only a select few know the mythic kingdom of shifters exists. Sevon is out of options for his people’s survival, and cooperating with Dominic is his only chance.

On their foray into Priagust, Dominic’s men kidnap and interrogate a shifter named Jack. Even under torture, Jack’s loyalty to his kind never wavers. But as Jack’s knowledge about Darkmore’s king and its history unsettles Sevon, a curious bond begins to form. Despite Sevon’s mistrust, Jack is determined to tame Sevon’s wild heart and perhaps earn his freedom. As invasion looms, Sevon wonders if trusting Jack will lead him into another trap or if he should forget about chasing the sunrise and remain Dominic’s compliant prisoner.

 
 
 
Available for purchase at
 
 
 
 
 
Excerpt
 
 

Jack shuddered against the cold bite of his shackles. The iron cuffs held him upright, and his arms were stretched tight over his head. Gravity pulled him sloping forward painfully against his bonds. His umber hair swayed in sweat-slicked strands and clung to his face. The humidity hung like milky fog visible against the gray stones. He could smell the herbal traces of algae glazing the walls. No moans, no cries for release, not even a rattled chain sounded throughout the dungeon. He deduced he was the only prisoner—or the only one currently living.
 
It had happened so fast. He was at the shoreline of the lake when two figures shot from the water. Shrouded in black, the demonic men yanked him into the lake. Jack had expected his end. But he didn’t expect a dungeon, and not just any, but Darkmore’s dungeon. He knew it as well as any ghost story. He had teased Sevon mercilessly for crossing his fingers and turning in a circle three times as he walked by the entrance.
 
Jack’s heart softened. Sevon, sweet Sevon. It had been exciting for Jack when he was a cub to have a special friend outside of Priagust. One who was not a shifter at all, but something different. He was Jack’s treasure, and he would guard their memory.
 
But the men had taken him and tossed him in this dank cell. It had to be a mistake. Darkmore was Priagust’s sworn protector. King Louis would never wrongfully imprison a shifter. Jack spit a speck of grit. Was Louis alive? Did he survive the storm? What of Anna Maria? Surely she’d know.
 
But Jack wasn’t sure. He had been just a child when he saw Louis die, and all childhood memories were fallible. He could only hope it was a misunderstanding. He squinted with the painful pull in his shoulders, and the realization sank in. This was far more than a mere misunderstanding.
 
Jack’s pupils flexed into pinpricks when the sound of distant footsteps announced someone’s approach. He jerked his chin toward the sound to get the first look at his host.
 
An ethereal, earthbound spirit drifted into the dungeon. Pale as Winter Mother’s snow and with a brilliant bloom of golden curls to rival Father Sun’s rays, the woman captivated him. Dressed in layers of the midnight sky and coal, her skirts swirled in a trail of goldfish fins behind her. The unusual ladybird settled at the cell door, tossing a lock of spun gold over her shoulder. She waited.
 
“What do they call you?” she coldly demanded.
 
A peculiar tenor tone in her voice made Jack choke on his breath. A man. The strange, colorful bird was a man.
 
By the way he glared at Jack as if he were of no consequence, Jack decided that whatever the case, he had to be on guard. Jack sniffed and mentally discerned a more masculine scent under the perfumed oils. But there were two masculine scents, this beautiful man’s and someone else’s. He licked the salt on his lip and smirked. He had nothing left to lose.
 
Jack lifted his head, and he panted against the searing pain in his back. He focused on the curious little meadowlark shrouded in flimsy frippery. He had never seen such an unusual hue of hair before, but he knew one thing for certain.
 
“You’re not the king,” Jack said.
 
Something came over the strange man as he quirked his thin brow in irritation. “Yes, I am the king,” he growled in warning. “Your name, creature.”
 
Jack evaded the question and changed the subject. “The king of Darkmore would never show a shifter such hostility,” he spat. “Go, little meadowlark. Fetch him, now. You are of no concern.”
 
The supposed king recoiled on his booted heel as if he had been burned.
 
“Excuse me, you maggot?” he growled and his temper flared.
 
Jack squinted at him. He looked so much like Anna Maria, as Jack remembered her. Perhaps her son? Perhaps Sevon? Jack swallowed. He had to keep it to himself. He had to find out what he was dealing with first, if he survived that long. He thought of his brother, Kaltag, back in Priagust, probably wondering where he was and if Jack was still staring over the lake, waiting for the day Sevon would appear.
 
Jack’s heart thumped.
 
“Louis is gone. I am the king now, and you will answer to me. My sources tell me you’re a spy from the shifter land of Priagust,” he said. The accusation did not bode well for Jack.
 
Jack took his stand against his captor. He strained against his shackles and grinned through the searing pain in his shoulder blades. “Your sources are clearly mistaken. I was only fishing when your men emerged from the lake and tried to drown me. Which—” He glanced around, and his shackles rattled. “This is some level of hell, correct?” Jack watched him, still puzzling his way through recollections. It wasn’t possible he was Sevon. Why would Sevon become this? He hissed a laugh and kept up a brave face. Jack turned his gaze up. He smirked when the king leaned away from the hammered iron bars of Jack’s cell in disgusted horror. “You are a very fussy bird. You’re no more than a chick, peeping for nourishment.”
 
“You will answer my questions, shifter…. Or you will be forced to answer them.”
 
“What kind of king do you think you are?” Jack asked. “Do you understand the scope of what you are doing by holding me like a criminal?”
 
“Pardon me for not rolling out the red carpet and most lovely courtesans,” he said sarcastically.
 
“A little bird that pecks. I like that.” Jack chuckled.
 
Crossing his willowy arms in irritation, the king nodded to the stocky dungeon guard.
 
The guard loped forward on his gnarled legs and slipped the heavy key in the iron padlock. With a protesting shrill, the bolt popped from its moorings with a loud echoing clank. The cell door swung open with an antiquated creak, and colorful bird of a man slipped into the cell.
 
Jack’s heart thumped, and his face heated. It was Sevon. His Sevon. He had never been so sure. In the twenty-two years between then and now, the boy Jack had so longed for no longer existed. Confusion swirled through him, but Jack had to keep it within. More parts of the puzzle would fall into place if he just gave it time.
 
His heart wouldn’t stop racing; all the while he maintained his arrogant grin.
 
“I’d curtsey, but as you can see, I’m a little tied up,” Jack apologized.
 
This new Sevon cocked his hip in irritation and snorted. “For a vicious animal, you don’t look like much.”
 
The term hit Jack hard, but he wouldn’t cower.
 
“Funny.” Jack chuckled. “For a king, you present yourself quite a bit like a whore.”
 
Before he could blink, Sevon was upon him. He yanked Jack by the scruff of his hair, tilting his neck painfully backward on its stalk to meet him eye to eye. Jack’s eyes rolled wildly to focus on the glacier blue of Sevon’s. His scent stabbed into Jack’s nose, jabbing cruelly into his brain. The delicate floral became an unrelenting assault on his mind and body. The damning confirmation sank into Jack’s stomach. It was a matter of survival not to show fascination or fear.
 
“Listen to me, you worthless shit-eating maggot!” Sevon snarled in his face. “You don’t get to call me a whore! Do you understand? I will leave you here to rot in this dank cell until even the rats find you too foul and putrescent. You will be thankful we don’t outright kill you. You will be appreciative of your accommodations.”
 
Sevon relaxed his grip and his harsh tone eased. “You will be eager to answer our questions. You will make yourself very helpful. Or I will have you skinned alive and your flesh made into jerky.” Sevon snorted a breath through his nose, and Jack’s hair fluttered. The beautiful blond man smiled like a content feline. “Now, do we have an understanding?”
 
Channeling the bravest parts of himself, and locking away the heartbreak, Jack laughed with a crooked, toothy grin. If this was the game, then he would play it until he was the last one standing. Finally, he had sorted the second male scent, and his thoughts sparked with devious delight. “Did I ruffle your feathers, meadowlark? Does the man whose scent you’re slathered in get to ruffle more than your feathers?”
 
Sevon shoved him away with a wail of disgust. Jack’s head bounced against his chest, and his manacles creaked at the added pressure. Sevon’s offended squeal was the only warning as a hard, echoing slap cracked across Jack’s cheek so forcefully that his vision blew out into whiteness for a moment.
 
With several flustered breaths, Sevon sharply pivoted and then stormed out of the cell. He nodded to the stocky guard. “Have him questioned about the nature of his people and land. I don’t care how you do it, or to what ends. Use any means necessary to milk him dry.”
 
The guard bobbed his head and bowed.
 
Turning back, Sevon regarded Jack one final time.
 
Jack noted the confusion mingled with a semblance of fascination. He forced a smile through his blood-tinged teeth. “See you soon, Your Majesty,” he purred.
 
Jack clung to a scrap of hope, and listened to the whispers of Sevon’s skirts as he left Jack in the darkness.
 
The rats chittered.
 
 


About the Author
Lex Chase once heard Stephen King say in a commercial, “We’re all going to die, I’m just trying to make it a little more interesting.” She knew then she wanted to make the world a little more interesting too.
Weaving tales of cinematic, sweeping adventure and epic love—and depending on how she feels that day—Lex sprinkles in high-speed chases, shower scenes, and more explosions than a Hollywood blockbuster. She loves tales of men who kiss as much as they kick ass. She believes if you’re going to going to march into the depths of hell, it better be beside the one you love.

Lex is a pop culture diva and her DVR is constantly backlogged. She wouldn’t last five minutes without technology in the event of the apocalypse and has nightmares about refusing to leave her cats behind. She is incredibly sentimental, to the point that she gets choked up at holiday commercials. But like the lovers driven to extreme measures to get home for the holidays, Lex believes everyone deserves a happy ending.
Lex also has a knack for sarcasm, never takes herself seriously, and has been nicknamed “The Next Alan Moore” by her friends for all the pain and suffering she inflicts on her characters. She is a Damned Yankee hailing from the frozen backwoods of Maine now residing in the burbs of Northwest Florida, where it could be 80F and she’d still be a popsicle.

She is grateful for and humbled by all the readers. She knows very well she wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for them and welcomes feedback.

You can find Lex at

              

Giveaway

Signed Paperback of Chasing Sunrise

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Presented By

Guest Book ♥ Project Fierce Chicago

Project Fierce Chicago       
by
Aeris Alessandra Ebulu Andrea Speed B. Snow Blaine D. Arden C.J. Anthony Caitlin Ricci Dianne Hartsock Jana Denardo Kayla Bain-Vrba Kenzie Cade Layla M. Wier Leta Hutchins Lor Rose Piper Vaughn Rin Sparrow Sophie Bonaste Talya Andor Vicktor Alexander Xara X. Xanakas
Anthology – 165k words
Contemporary, Fantasy, Gay, Genderqueer, Lesbian
Pairings: M/M, F/F, genderqueer
LT3′s Project Fierce Chicago charity anthology includes 20 short stories
Content: Contains no explicit content
Available: July 16, 2014

Nobody deserves to be without a home. In collaboration with several authors, Less Than Three Press offers up an anthology of stories about young people who find that home and family are not always where you expect to find them.

All proceeds from this charity anthology will be donated to Project Fierce Chicago.

Project Fierce Chicago’s mission is to reduce LGBTQ youth homelessness in Chicago by providing affirming, no-cost transitional housing and comprehensive support services to homeless LGBTQ young adults. PFC also aims to encourage community-building and civic engagement through cooperative living and youth leadership development.

Less Than Three Press

Homelessness and the Project Fierce Charity Anthology

Thank you Tempeste for having me over! I wanted to talk a little bit about homelessness today and the Project Fierce Charity Anthology, in which I’m very happy to say my story SAMMY is part of.

Less Than Three Press has done a few charity works in the past, mostly for relief efforts for natural disasters. It’s something they’ve always wanted to pursue further, but with more emphasis on the LGBTQ community, so when they were asked by one of the participating authors if they’d be willing to back an anthology for Project Fierce, it seemed like the perfect starting point to making a concerted effort in that direction.

Nobody deserves to be without a home. In collaboration with several authors, Less Than Three Press offers up an anthology of stories about young people who find that home and family are not always where you expect to find them.

10501409_10202223192916588_964860767_nAll proceeds from this charity anthology will be donated to Project Fierce Chicago.

Project Fierce Chicago’s mission is to reduce LGBTQ youth homelessness in Chicago by providing affirming, no-cost transitional housing and comprehensive support services to homeless LGBTQ young adults. PFC also aims to encourage community-building and civic engagement through cooperative living and youth leadership development.

LT3′s Project Fierce Chicago charity anthology includes 20 short stories from Aeris, Vicktor Alexander, Talya Andor, C.J. Anthony, Blaine D. Arden, Kayla Bain-Vrba, Sophie Bonaste, Kenzie Cade, Jana Denardo, Alessandra Ebulu, Dianne Hartsock, Leta Hutchins, Caitlin Ricci, Lor Rose, B. Snow, Rin Sparrow, Andrea Speed, Piper Vaughn, Layla M. Wier, and Xara X. Xanakas

10490209_10202223193356599_126928322_nPairings: M/M, F/F, genderqueer

Content: Contains no explicit content.

Release: July 16th, 2014

Buy link: Less Than Three Press: http://www.lessthanthreepress.com/books/index.php?main_page=product_bookx_info&cPath=115&products_id=632

THE AVERAGE AGE OF A CHILD EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS IN CHICAGO IS 9 YEARS OLD

Homelessness has devastating effects on children. Children that lack stable housing experience chronic stress and trauma from frequent moves, inconsistent relationships, and from witnessing domestic violence. The stress and trauma is physically, emotionally and cognitively damaging to them.

According to The National Center on Family Homelessness’ 2010 America’s Youngest Outcast Report, children experiencing homelessness:

  • 97% move up to three times within one year
  • Have experienced  abuse and neglect along with the stresses associated with the loss of their home, safety and sense of security
  • Go hungry at twice the rate of other children
  • Have three times the rate of emotional and behavioral problems, such as anxiety, depression, sleep problems and aggression
  • 40% attend two different schools in a year and 28% attend three or more different schools
  • Have four times more likely to have delayed development and twice as likely to have learning disabilities
  • Are 16% less proficient at reading and math than their peers
  • One-third repeat a grade
  • Have little or no positive interaction with adults

OVER 2000 YOUTH NEED TO FIND A SAFE PLACE TO SLEEP ON ANY GIVEN NIGHT IN CHICAGO

Chicago Public Schools identified 2,512 unaccompanied youth attending their schools in 2012-13, teens who were homeless and living without parent or guardian. There are only 360 youth beds in Chicago.

Homeless youth face daily challenges while living on their own. They need to secure food and shelter, find a job or return to school. The choices many make in order to survive are often not good for them and can affect their adult life.

Consequences of youth experiencing homelessness:

  • 32% have attempted suicide
  • Victims of rape and assault at 2 to 3 times higher the rate than their stably housed peers
  • More than one-third of homeless youth engage in survival sex (when sex is exchanged for money, shelter, food or other basic needs)
  • Only one in four graduate from high school
  • Greater risk of suffering from chronic health disorders like asthma and diabetes
  • More likely to suffer from anxiety disorders, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder

Project Fierce Chicago is a grassroots group of youth advocates and community members working to create housing for homeless LGBTQ youth in Chicago.

-allchicago.org

Everyone deserves a safe and stable home!

Sammy: My story in the Project Fierce Anthology

At fifteen, Sam inadvertently comes out to his parents, but instead of the support he hopes for, they send him to live with his uncle. Unfortunately, the man is even less tolerant of his uniqueness. Rather than change to please his family, feeling unwanted and misunderstood, he runs away to find a better life.

But the crowded city isn’t kind to a young man with no home and no prospects of work. When this story opens, Sam has been on the streets for several years when one of his ‘regulars’ begins to take more than a business interest in him. For the first time Sammy dreams of more than a bleak lonely future, but does he dare hope that someone like him could find their happily ever after?

Excerpt:

John tossed his apron in the hamper then slipped out the back of the shelter into the dark alley and hurried around to the brightly lit street in front. Couples were enjoying the last of the day’s warmth on the waterfront and he envied them as he headed toward his apartment complex. His pulse sped up as he neared the Morrison Bridge. Though it was after nine, traffic was still heavy on the bridge and also along Naito Parkway.

Passing under the bridge, he glanced down the bike path running alongside it, searching  for Sammy. His heart leaped to his throat on seeing the familiar figure huddled on the grass, arms wrapped around his knees, looking alone and dejected. John ached to go to him, but would Sam want to talk to him? They weren’t really friends. John paid for his company.

A soft sob floated on the night air and plunged straight into John’s heart. He hurried over to Sam, then stood biting his lips, not sure what to say.

“What do you want?” Sammy’s voice sounded tired, rough with tears.

“Do you need help? Can I do anything?”

Sam raised his head, blue eyes shimmering at him through wet lashes. Recognition sparked in the beautiful depths, then they widened. “You.” Sam struggled to his feet, hugging his bare arms across his chest against the chill creeping up from the river. “Sorry, I have to cancel on you. I’m closed for the night. Try again tomorrow.”

He brushed past John and started down the bike path. John’s heart thumped painfully. “Sam?”

The young man stopped and swiveled abruptly. The lamplight caught his expression, a hint of fear, anger; the light clearly showing a cut lip and the dark swelling of a bruise on his ivory cheek. John clamped his lips shut on a murmur of pity, noting he held his left arm as if it hurt.

Helplessness swept through John. “Let me help you. I can make you a cup of coffee at least. And dinner, if you’re interested. I make great spaghetti.”

Doubt crossed Sam’s pretty face and the end of his pink tongue nudged the cut on his lip, twisting John’s heart. Impulsively, he touched Sam’s arm. “Did someone hurt you?”

Sam stared at his hand, not answering. John was grateful he didn’t yank his arm away. Finally Sam nodded.

Anger flashed through John, but he didn’t want to scare Sam off with questions. “Come home with me,” he urged softly. “I won’t ask anything of you. I want to help and… I could use the company tonight.”

Blue eyes glanced upwards, vulnerable. But then Sam blinked and mischief curled his lips. John winced at his false bravado. “Whatever you say, hon.” Sam hooked their arms and started along the wide path following the riverfront. After only a few steps in the chill evening air, John shrugged out of his coat and put it around Sam’s shoulders. Sam looked amused but pulled the coat tighter around his thin cotton shirt. “Thanks.”

John’s heart pattered. He liked Sam’s arm linked with his. A few people gave them curious glances, but for the most part, they were ignored. He wished the circumstances were better, that maybe Sam was his boyfriend and they were walking home from the movies. They reached his street and his pulse quickened when he led Sam to his apartment.

 

99¢ Today Only at Dreamspinner Press!

99¢ Today ONLY at Dreamspinner Press!

http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=4038

Artist James Bryant has forearm crutches in every color from rainbow for fun to sleek black for business. He even has a pair with more paint splatters than metal. After his family’s rejection and abuse from a man he thought loved him, James only just gets through the day by painting. He lives in constant fear that he’s not worthy of anything, let alone love.

As CEO of his company, Carrington Enterprises, Seth Burns is a take-charge kind of guy, and he is instantly smitten by the artist helping with his newest project. When he witnesses James suffer a panic attack, a protective instinct he never knew he had kicks in. He truly believes nothing is unobtainable—including James—if he’s willing to put in the time and effort.

James is shy and confused by Seth’s interest in him as a person. With Seth’s support, can he work through his fears to finally find the true love he deserves, or will someone finally land the crushing blow he won’t survive?

Chasing Sunrise by Lex Chase

100% of the presale royalties of this book will go to Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center’s Domestic Violence Service.

Chasing Sunrise400x600
Genre: Vampires, Werewolves/Shapeshifters, Urban Fantasy, Paranormal, Fantasy
Series: The Darkmore Saga: Book One
Length: Novel
Published: July 25, 2014
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
ISBN: 978-1-62798-776-9
Pre-order: Paperback or eBook

Blurb:
Chasing Sunrise
The Darkmore Saga: Book One

On the Coastal Bend of Texas, a hidden kingdom called Darkmore lies in ruins, and King Sevon Maraté is trapped. Using Sevon as a mouthpiece and a scapegoat, Lord Dominic rules from the shadows. Born of royal verkolai blood and as beautiful as he is lethal, Sevon possesses the ability to part the Veil separating his world from hundreds of others. His gift is his chance to escape, but Dominic refuses to relinquish his tool for power. Dominic forges an ambitious plan to invade the prosperous land of Priagust. Only a select few know the mythic kingdom of shifters exists. Sevon is out of options for his people’s survival, and cooperating with Dominic is his only chance.

On their foray into Priagust, Dominic’s men kidnap and interrogate a shifter named Jack. Even under torture, Jack’s loyalty to his kind never wavers. But as Jack’s knowledge about Darkmore’s king and its history unsettles Sevon, a curious bond begins to form. Despite Sevon’s mistrust, Jack is determined to tame Sevon’s wild heart and perhaps earn his freedom. As invasion looms, Sevon wonders if trusting Jack will lead him into another trap or if he should forget about chasing the sunrise and remain Dominic’s compliant prisoner.


Chasing Sunrise Excerpt

The chill of the metal bucket had long since numbed Sevon’s hands. He took another breath. He had to do this. He had no choice but to go through with it. He bit his lip and mentally repeated Jack was the enemy, Jack was just like any other man. Jack was a man who preyed upon men like him. Jack intended to kill him.

Jack was the enemy.

Jack was the enemy.

Jack was the enemy.

Sevon upended the bucket of ice water over Jack’s sleeping head.

Jack coughed and sputtered, consciousness returned to him in a hard-hitting rush. His shackles rattled and creaked. Sevon waited patiently as Jack fought the unrelenting wave of temperature shock. Jack turned his soggy head upward and looked at him. Sevon fought to keep his expression cold as Jack chuckled in a shuddering laugh. He croaked hoarsely, “Well, if it isn’t the little meadowlark….”

Sevon considered his set of tools on the small wooden table. They were well maintained in comparison to Dominic’s set. Dominic had them made just for Sevon’s boyish hands and gave them the royal touch with studs of diamonds, sapphires, and inlaid with filigree.

It’s just a game, Sevon reminded himself. The object of the game was for him to appear more intimidating than Jack. The intimidation part commonly worked. Sevon had never had to draw blood in exchange for the truth before. Dominic made it look easy. Easy but horrific. This time, it was different. This time, the creature had tried to kill him, and when he searched his mind, Sevon found only a foggy void where the incident would be—and a sense of desire.

The idea sickened him.

Sevon had to make himself the bigger monster. He had to be ready for what came next. He couldn’t make his heart stop racing. Sevon’s fingers glided over his instruments, trying to decide what to try first. The pliers? Maybe not. The razors and salt? Too soon for that. The flask of mercury? Oh, come now, he’s no good to the kingdom dead! Possibly the skewers are the best choice. Yes.

Sevon delicately rolled a metal skewer between his fingertips. “We’re going to have a little chat. The more you cooperate, the more you get into my good graces,” he purred.

Jack laughed against the rawness in his throat. “Your lover’s poor excuse for sadists already had a round on me. I think I made one of them cry…. I’d have to apologize about the nose of the other.”

Sevon regarded his prisoner coolly and gathered three skewers. “Broke his nose, did you?” he asked, as if they were discussing the weather. If he could keep his thoughts disassociated from what was unfolding, Sevon would get through this momentary unpleasantness.

Jack spat out a lock of greasy hair and grinned. He looked up at Sevon, the blackened blood of an aisa caked around his mouth. “More like bit it off,” he said, adding his observation, “You creatures taste like fermented clay. Thanks for the water. I needed a drink.”

Sevon maintained his aloof air, but his stomach lurched at the state of Jack’s appearance. Old bruises had faded and were overlaid with new ones that, despite the size of the marks, didn’t appear terribly severe. Old blood, sweat, and grime painted trailing fingers down his wiry body. They had done away with his clothing as well as his dignity in the dungeon. While bound in chains, he had no place to relive himself save where he stood. They had treated him like a beast. A mongrel that only deserved beatings.

Sevon knew that sensation all too well. He knew this cell intimately. Dominic was taunting him by putting Jack in the very cell where Sevon was sent to be taught obedience. Sevon blinked away his concern, despite the bile rising in his throat. He forced himself not to pay attention to the smell of filth.

Sevon considered where to apply the skewers first. The toenails seemed like a good idea. After all, Dominic had done it to him months ago as part of his training regimen. Dominic had wanted to teach him a better appreciation of the prisoner’s pain. As Sevon observed Jack’s roughly callused foot and thick toenails, his own toes flexed in his boot at the hazy memory of agony. Sevon wasn’t sure about shifter physiology; maybe it would get a reaction, maybe it wouldn’t. Losing a toenail was bound to ruin anyone’s year.

“What happened in Priagust, Jack?” Sevon asked the foot.

Jack feebly tried to jerk his foot out of Sevon’s reach. “By Diana, do we really have to be like this?” Jack whined as Sevon tapped the skewer into position.

 


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LXC_FlamesAbout the Author:

Lex Chase once heard Stephen King say in a commercial, “We’re all going to die, I’m just trying to make it a little more interesting.” She knew then she wanted to make the world a little more interesting.

Weaving tales of cinematic, sweeping adventure, epic love—and depending on how she feels that day—Lex sprinkles in high-speed chases, shower scenes, and more explosions than a Hollywood blockbuster. She loves tales of men who kiss as much as they kick ass. She believes if you’re going to going to march into the depths of hell, it better be beside the one you love.

Lex is a pop culture diva and her DVR is constantly backlogged. She wouldn’t last five minutes without technology in the event of the apocalypse and has nightmares about refusing to leave her cats behind. She is incredibly sentimental, to the point that she gets choked up at holiday commercials. But like the lovers driven to extreme measures to get home for the holidays, Lex believes everyone deserves a happy ending.

Lex also has a knack for sarcasm, never takes herself seriously, and has been nicknamed “The Next Alan Moore” by her friends for all the pain and suffering she inflicts on her characters. She is a Damned Yankee hailing from the frozen backwoods of Maine residing in the ’burbs of Northwest Florida where it could be 80F and she’d be a popsicle.

She is grateful and humbled for all the readers. She knows very well she wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for them and welcomes feedback.

You can find her on those social media things at:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LXChase
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Lex_Chase

Tumblr: http://lexiconofkittens.tumblr.com

Find her blog at http://lexchase.com or drop her an e-mail at lex.a.chase@gmail.com.

Splinters by Thorny Sterling is LIVE

“I’m wearing soft, old jeans and a greenish-blue T-shirt, neither of which fit—but they’re Dukes, and they smell like they were dried with nothing but sunshine.”

It all started with a blog, a lunch receipt, and the hope of true love.

In 2010, with the encouragement of his blog followers, Thorny Sterling wrote his email address on the back of a receipt and gave it to a returning customer who’d caught his eye. One email and a four-hour phone call later, their fates were sealed. Thorny and his husband Jazz have been together ever since.

On his blog, Thorny writes about daily life as a twenty-something gay genderfluid who attends college in Ohio. In his free time, Thorny paints both digitally and in acrylics and writes gay (M/M) romantic fiction. In the summer of 2014, Thorny published his first novel while also taking steps to sell his artwork online. He often donates a portion of his profits from art sales to various LGBT equality and military support charities.

Someday soon, Thorny hopes to become a teacher and legally marry his husband.

Visit Thorny Online
Blog (
http://thornysterling.com)
Facebook (
http://bit.ly/sunshineTonFB)
Twitter (
http://bit.ly/sunshineTweet)
Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6421299.Thorny_Sterling)

Splinter
by Thorny Sterling

M/M Erotic Contemporary Western Romance

Waking up in a strange place isn’t a first for model and actor Allan Seville, but discovering himself alone and bound to a rough plank in the middle of an open Texas range certainly is. With no memory of who did this to him or why, panic sets in, until rescue comes riding up on a big, brown horse.

There’s more to Duke Walters than a handsome face and sexy drawl. In the arms of this rugged cowboy, Al discovers a peace and safety he never knew he needed, and now doesn’t want to be without.

But someone wants Al out of the way and drugging him during a movie junket in Houston is only the beginning. A world of differences may separate this cowboy and diva, but when danger strikes again, Duke might be the only one who can get them out alive.

Amazon US
Amazon UK
CreateSpace

Sexy Snippet and the #BDSMhop

In honor of the final day of the BDSM Blog Hop, Grace posted a sexy snippet from her Golden Collar series… so I’ve decided to give you all a taste from my newly submitted Caged Sanctuary. Winking smile

Deacon bent forward again, pressing a single soft kiss to Kade’s forehead. “Follow,” he instructed.

Kade did as he was told, unlocking his wheels before following along behind his Dom, both excited and nervous to see the room ahead. He kept telling himself that Deacon wouldn’t invite him here if he wasn’t serious about them trying, but the memories of rejection for being useless and broken still managed to intrude at times. Pushing aside those thoughts, he hurried, coasting into the room, stopping just a short ways behind Deacon. He let his gaze wander, taking in the elegant bed covered in soft silver sheets, various devices and toys, even a—he cocked his head to the side—bean bag chair? Odd thing to find in an adult playroom, but he figured Deacon had a reason for it to be there.

He watched Deacon move, bending to take his shoes and socks off, but leaving the rest of his clothes in place. “When in this room, I expect you naked and ready for me. I will give you time later to explore everything here as I will, at times, also give you instructions on items to gather, use, or prepare before play. I expect you to obey at all times. If you have cause not to, then you must tell me immediately. That will include the why, boy. Do you understand.”

The command and the way Deacon’s voice dropped and hardened from the moment they entered the room had his cock harder than he could ever remember it being. Kade loved a man that knew what he wanted and damn well expected his sub to obey. He nodded and replied, “Yes, Sir.” He paused and he thought about the instructions given. “Should I strip now or… is this simply instructional time for the future?”

“Mmm, I have every intention of playing with you, boy, so yes, remove your clothes. There is a small stand to your right. That is where you are to place your clothes, folded neatly.” As soon as Deacon stopped speaking, he turned his back to Kade and stalked across the room. At the tall dresser against one of the walls, he stopped and pulled open the top drawer.

Not wanting to disappoint, and appreciating the small amount of privacy, Kade quickly shimmied out of his clothes, folding each piece carefully before setting the pieces on the small table. Once completely nude and resettled in his chair, he maneuvered into the room more, stopping at the approximate center. He then leaned forward slightly, folding his arms behind his back and clasping them, in as close an approximation of the presentation position as he could given his lack of balance and kneeling. He then lowered his gaze, choosing a spot a little ways in front of him to focus, and waited.

After a few minutes, Kade watched Deacon’s feet and legs come into view. The man circled him slowly. Kade’s breath sped as he waited, nearly coming apart when he finally felt the first touch of Deacon’s fingers across his shoulder. The light touch shifted to slide down his spine, touching but not stopping on a few of the thin scars that peppered his skin. Some were from the attack, others from heavy use of the cane when he was younger. The latter ones he was proud of and hoped to have more of soon.

© 2014 Tempeste O’Rilely

Now, if you want to enter the giveaway (you do right?) Make sure to comment on this post and/or my main HOP post here or even my post over on the House Millar site. I’m offering up an ecopy of any of my backlist to a random commenter.

And don’t forget to visit the other great authors participating!

Guest Book ♥ No Sacrifice by Grace R. Duncan

clip_image002No Sacrifice
by Grace R. Duncan

M/M Erotic Contemporary Romance
Publisher:
Dreamspinner Press
Release Date:
June 23, 2014 (ebook/print)
Length: Novel / 400 pages

Dreamspinner Press  All Romance  Amazon 

Add to: Goodreads

Patrick has taken his acting talents from high school all the way to a role in a major television show. But as the show progresses, his life of absolute certainties crumbles when he finds himself reacting to the kisses of his male costar. He refuses to accept it, reminding himself he’s married and a father—and thus, straight.

One night he goes to drink his worries away, meets Chance Dillon, and can’t take his eyes off the man. After having a little too much alcohol, he spills his problem to Chance, who helps him realize there’s something other than gay and straight. Patrick’s new understanding of his bisexual identity helps him sleep better—until the next day, when he discovers Chance is a sound technician on the same set.

As their friendship grows and Patrick’s marriage ends, he recognizes a possibility for much more with Chance. But Patrick isn’t ready to be out the way Chance has been for so long, and when the matter is taken out of Patrick’s hands, he pushes Chance away to spare him the mess Patrick’s life has become. By the time he realizes his mistake, it may be too late.

“WELL, THANKS for dinner,” Chance said when they stood outside Pablo’s.

“You’re welcome. Thanks for the ride. I’ve got to just break down and start driving myself, but… I hate LA traffic.” Patrick shook his head.

Chance chuckled. “I don’t blame you. You ought to see Atlanta traffic. I swear there are spots that are even worse.”

Patrick stared. “Tell me you’re kidding me.”Chance shook his head. “No, seriously.”

“Wow. Well, uh, yeah, glad I don’t live there.” He paused and considered Chance for a long moment, who didn’t seem to be in any bigger rush to leave than he was. “So, uh….” He felt like squirming. This is ridiculous.

“Do you… want a ride home?” Chance asked when Patrick didn’t say anything more.

“Naw, I can walk. It’s not far,” Patrick replied and took a deep breath. “’Sides, I was thinking about going to see what was in the theater. Do… uh… do you want to go with me?”

Chance frowned. “I can’t.”

Patrick swallowed, annoyed with himself at just how keen the disappointment was. It’s not like he was asking Chance out on a date… right? “That’s… cool. Okay, well, uh….” He looked away, wishing he hadn’t asked.

“I’m sorry,” Chance said. “I have a gig tonight. Most Wednesdays, actually, if we finish on set early enough. But tonight’s kind of important or I’d call and cancel.”

“Oh!” Patrick blinked. “Oh, well, uh, that’s cool.”

“Would… you like to go with me? It’s just a quiet place tonight, not all that exciting or anything, but….”

Patrick suddenly felt about a million times better. He reminded himself he was being absurd. He hadn’t asked Chance on a date. They were friends—only friends—it shouldn’t matter. “Yeah, I’d like that, actually.”

Chance’s smile was huge, and Patrick had to work hard not to stare. His attraction to Chance hadn’t faded in the time since that first night at the bar, though Patrick did his damnedest to keep it buried. He valued his friendship with Chance, and on top of that, he’d heard his friend protest enough when Marcy pushed them to date. He didn’t have to hear more to understand Chance wasn’t interested in him like that, so attraction would only make things awkward.

“Great! Uh… I have to go by my place to get my guitar. I don’t like to leave it in the hot car.”

“I wouldn’t either. Um.” Patrick paused to glance down at himself. He was still in the plain T-shirt and jeans he’d been wearing after changing out of costume. “I should probably go home and change.”

“You look gr… uh, fine,” Chance said, and Patrick looked up, raising his eyebrows. “That’s all I wear. And, uh, in fact, it might be best if you don’t dress up any more. Um… I guess I should tell you that the club is a gay club.” Chance bit his lip.

Patrick shrugged. “I don’t care, but… that makes sense, then,” he said and chuckled. “Well….” Patrick held his hand toward Chance’s car. He waited until Chance passed and caught a glimpse of the man’s ass. Which was really nice. Stop it! Friend, remember? He continued to scold himself as he got in the car.

He was a little surprised when they were at Chance’s place only a minute or so later. He shouldn’t have been—Chance hadn’t driven the night they’d had dinner at Pablo’s the first time, so the man couldn’t live too far. He found himself quite glad they lived so near to each other.

Chance’s apartment was even smaller than Patrick’s place. It was, essentially, one room—though it was big enough to be sectioned off. One corner held the bed—rumpled, at the moment—with a side table and a chest of drawers. Opposite the bed, a wide closet stretched along the wall to the bathroom doorway. A tiny table took up the corner opposite the bed and sat next to the galley kitchen. In the third corner, a two-seater sofa sat in front of a wall-mounted TV, which had a bench underneath that held a PlayStation 3 and a messy stack of games and DVDs.

The lion’s share of the room, however, was taken up by Chance’s audio equipment. Large speakers flanked a component sound system beyond anything Patrick had ever dreamed of owning. A rack of audio CDs ranging from Adam Lambert to ZZ Top and almost everything in between hung on the wall above. Next to the system stood a digital piano with handwritten music on the stand and beyond it a small desk with an open laptop, currently off.

“Sorry, it’s… a disaster,” Chance muttered, red-cheeked, as he snatched up clothes that had been tossed willy-nilly on the floor.

Before Patrick could say anything—like assuring Chance his own apartment was much worse—Chance was fussing with the bedclothes, and Patrick’s eye was caught by the poster on the wall above it—and the not-quite-life-sized version of himself staring back. Next to him stood Sebastian, with Angelo and Rhys, farther along and, of course, the show’s logo below them.

He tore his eyes away from the poster to see Chance staring at him, still holding a bundle of clothes. “Uh… nice poster. I didn’t know they had those.” When Chance didn’t reply, he added, “And don’t worry about the apartment… mine’s worse—much worse.” He wondered at the look on Chance’s face, the slight blush on his friend’s cheeks. The blue eyes darted from him to the bed and back again, and that’s when Patrick saw it: a stuffed dragon that took up a chunk of the corner. When that registered, he spotted the smaller versions on Chance’s chest of drawers and then the others around the room in spots here and there—on the stereo rack, the TV bench, and so on.

It took Patrick about three seconds to figure out what was going on. “The stuffed one is cool. Is that supposed to be Smaug?”

The relief in Chance’s eyes would have been obvious to a blind man. “Uhm… yes… uh, actually.” He paused to blink at Patrick. “Aren’t you going to make some sort of comment about… toys… or something?”

Patrick shook his head. “Your older brother?” he asked.

Chance nodded. “And Vannah.” He looked down at the bundle of clothes in his hands as if just remembering they were there, then threw them into a basket before crossing the room again. “They loved to tease me about being too old to play with toys and stuff. Vannah eventually stopped, but Gareth never did. Then again, Gareth’s an asshole on a good day.” He shook his head and picked up the acoustic guitar Patrick hadn’t noticed earlier from its stand next to the piano. Behind it sat another stand that held an electric version.

“My brothers and sisters used to make fun of me for acting out parts and stuff. I quit doing it for a while. Until Noa came along—that’s my youngest sister. She used to like to dress up and play, and I got away with it with her.” Patrick sighed. “Siblings can be so mean.”

“Yeah, no kidding…. Well, you know my guilty pleasure now,” Chance said as he tugged the guitar case out from under his bed and laid the instrument inside. “What’s yours?”

Patrick considered it while Chance flipped the clips closed on the case. “Donuts.”

“What?” Chance asked, turning around. Patrick blushed when Chance’s gaze raked over his body, obviously considering whether or not he could possibly eat a lot of donuts.

“It’s a thing. I try to get to the crafty for it in the mornings before they’re all gone. But… yeah, those glazed ones? Even when I’m not on set for the day, I’ll go to the little place over on San Fernando.” He cleared his throat and scratched the back of his head. “I kinda get grumpy when I don’t get to the crafty in time in the mornings, and Rhys gives me so much shit about it.” He chuckled. “So, yeah….”

“Well… that’s… not bad.” Chance’s watch started beeping then, and he looked down. “Shit, we have to go.”

When they were settled in the car and on their way, Chance weaving through the traffic like a pro, Patrick asked, “So, where is it? Is there an… area that’s primarily for the gay community?”

“West Hollywood has a bunch of clubs and things. On Santa Monica Boulevard, mostly. Sophia’s—where we’re going—is just off Santa Monica and is pretty big for its drag shows. But Sophia and Andy have those on the weekends.” He fell silent as he worked his way over into another lane, then onto the Golden State Freeway. “I hate the highways here, but the stop and go drives me more nuts,” he grumbled. “Anyway, Sophia asked me… oh… about six months ago, if I’d come in and sing on Wednesdays. Took her nearly a month to convince me.” He chuckled. “I told you….”

“Yeah, stage, deer-in-the-headlights,” Patrick agreed, grinning. “How’d she do it?”

“She threatened to strip right in front of me if I didn’t agree.”

“Oh God, that must have been funny,” Patrick said around laughter.

“Well, it could have been worse—you’ll see why in a few—but yeah… it was as much because I didn’t want her partner Andy on me.” He shook his head.

“How’d you get over the deer thing?” Patrick asked.

Chance sighed but didn’t answer for a moment as he maneuvered through traffic. When he was on the exit ramp, he replied, “Usually I just try to pretend I’m jamming with friends or just… by myself or something, you know?”

“Yeah, I got ya. That’s how I got through my first few shows.” Patrick chuckled. “Then they applauded, and I kind of got addicted to it. I miss that. Sometimes I think I’d rather be on stage—the more immediate feedback, you know?”

“You mean being yelled at by Jack isn’t enough?” Chance asked.

Patrick laughed. “Um… I think I’d prefer the applause.” He snorted as he tried to get control.

“But… Jack’s so loveable!”

Patrick lost it again, and by the time he got control they were pulling into the tiny parking lot for Sophia’s Desert Palace. The back of the building was comprised of simple red brick with a small burgundy canopy over the single door. Chance took a spot in the far corner, and they climbed out. “This is the backstage entrance. The main entrance is on the other side.”

Patrick wasn’t sure what he was expecting of Sophia’s Desert Palace, considering the name and red brick exterior, but it seemed to be what Benny’s was trying to be. The interior looked like something straight out of an Arabian Nights type of story or something. The sand-colored walls had arches inset with small fountains surrounded in bright tile. More tiles in mosaics covered the floor in front of the stage and on either side along the walls. Tables just big enough for a cramped four sat on this portion of the floor. In the center of the room, a sunken wooden dance floor became wide stairs farther back, until it reached a bar that looked like it’d been plucked straight from Casablanca.

On either side of the bar, polished wooden steps curved up to a balcony above that formed the same U-shape as the tile floor below. Patrick could make out more tables along the railing.

“There’s a table right up front over there that you can sit at, if you’d like,” Chance said, pointing.

“Sounds good. Um….”

“It’s usually really quiet tonight. I’ll do a couple of sets and see how it goes, but I’ll be with you for the break. And if anyone bothers you, tell them you’re with me. Except… her,” he said, turning a smile on the very tall, very beautiful, woman approaching. “Hi, Sophia,” Chance greeted her.

Aside from being so tall, she put most of the women he knew to shame. Perfect makeup, impeccably coiffed deep red hair, bright green eyes, long matching fingernails, and heels that would kill his mother and sisters if they tried to walk in them. The dress she wore hugged her curves in all the right ways, and Patrick was slightly relieved to discover that women hadn’t, at least, started turning him off.

“Well, it’s about time you got here. I was missing you!” she said, and Patrick paused to puzzle over the voice briefly. It seemed deeper than was normal for a woman. Then he got a closer look at her and could not mistake the Adam’s apple. Before he could put all the pieces together, she spoke again.

“Oh! You brought a date!” she crowed, turning to Patrick, who was, unfortunately, staring.

“He’s not a date, Sophia. He’s my friend, but be nice. I’m not sure he’s used to queens,” Chance chided.

“Queens?” Patrick asked, blinking up at her.

Sophia laughed delightedly. “Oh, he’s a treasure. Where did you find him?” she asked as they started crossing the floor, taking Patrick’s arm. Patrick crooked it automatically and looked up at her again, trying to figure out what he was missing.

“Benny’s, actually, though we work on the same show. Patrick Tearney, this is Sophia Sweet. Sophia, Patrick Tearney, who plays Nadir.”

“Oh, yes! I knew I saw him somewhere! It’s lovely to have you here, dear.” She patted his hand when they stopped at the table.

“It’s a pleasure.” Patrick, remembering the lessons his da had drummed into him, took her hand and kissed it.

“Oh, he’s a charmer too! You better hold on to this one!” She grinned down at him. “Darlin’, first drink is on me.” She glanced over at Chance. “Think he’d really have it on me?” she asked.

“Sophia!” Chance scowled.

“I see! I get it now, dear. Never mind that, Patrick, darlin’.” She patted his cheek and turned to Chance. “So why isn’t it a date?” she demanded, tapping one… large… heeled foot.

That’s when everything finally clicked into place for Patrick. He couldn’t believe it took him that long. “Uh, I’m married… ma’am,” he said, drawing her—his? Her, he decided. Drawing her attention back to him.

“Oh! Married, are you? Is he here in LA?”

“Uh, no, I’m married to a woman.”

Sophia seemed a little thrown off for a moment and rested one hand on her large chest. “Really?” she asked, blinking at him. When he nodded, she

shrugged. “Well, no one’s perfect,” she said, and at the growl from Chance, added, “Fine, fine, to each his own, I suppose. You’re still pretty, dear.” She patted his hand and turned to Chance, leaned in, and whispered something in his ear.

Patrick grinned when Chance rolled his eyes. “Really, Sophia, leave it alone! I can get my own dates,” he grumbled.

She laughed. “You keep saying that, but I don’t see you in here with anyone… or leaving with anyone for that matter. We may not be quite the same kind of place for cruising as some of the clubs on Santa Monica, but I’m sure there are plenty who’d take you home.” No Sacrifice 53

“I’m not interested in that, Soph. You know that,” Chance said.

Patrick didn’t like the thundercloud expression on Chance’s face. She’d obviously struck a nerve. “Uh, when does the show start?” he asked to head off any more discussion.

“I do need to get set up. Don’t harass him, Soph. You okay, Patrick?”

“Yeah, I’m fine,” he said, shooting his friend a smile and pulling out a chair. “Did you want to sit down, Sophia?”

She grinned at him and patted his cheek again. “Not now, darlin’, but I’ll stop by later. Thank you. What’s your poison?”

“Oh, uh… Jameson?” he asked, and she nodded. “And Guinness, if you’ve got it.”

“We do.” She watched Chance climb the stairs to the stage, then turned back. “He’s a very lonely boy here in LA, with no family and only a couple of friends. Not that he’ll say anything—he won’t. It’s good he’s got a friend like you.” Patrick opened his mouth to reply, but then she stepped back and said, “But it’d be better if he had a boyfriend like you.”

With that she turned and walked away. Patrick watched her go, more confused than he’d been yet.

clip_image004Grace Duncan grew up with a wild imagination.  She told stories from an early age – many of which got her into trouble.  Eventually, she learned to channel that imagination into less troublesome areas, including fanfiction, which is what has led her to writing male/male erotica.

A gypsy in her own right, Grace has lived all over the United States.  She has currently set up camp in East Texas with her husband and children – both the human and furry kind.

As one of those rare creatures who loves research, Grace can get lost for hours on the internet, reading up on any number of strange and different topics.  She can also be found writing fanfiction, reading fantasy, crime, suspense, romance and other erotica or even dabbling in art.

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Blog Tour: INVICTA by Piper Kay

INVICTA: SALVATION Book One in the INVICTA Series
By: Piper Kay
Published By Hot Ink Press
Book Two INVICTA: SANCTUARY Due out July 13th 2014

Piper Kay is a down to earth, homegrown country girl, straight from the outskirts of Houston, Texas. As a #1 International Best Selling Author of LGBT Erotica, and Amazon International Bestselling author of male/male erotica romance, and m/m erotica, she is bringing her passion of storytelling straight to the pages.

Published works include:

Twisted Cherry

A Perfect Passion (The Passion Series-Book One)

Payce’s Passion (The Passion Series-Book Two)

Eight Second Cowboy

The Naughty Box

Invicta Series: Invicta: Salvation

Upcoming projects: Invicta: Sanctuary. Book 2 in the Invicta Series will release as part of The Naughty Box 2 Scheduled to release on July 13, 2014

”What would you like to tell everyone about you that they wouldn’t already know from
reading your books?”
 I’m a natural blonde
Can you tell us your latest news?
Invicta: Salvation is releasing on July 13 as part of The Naughty Box 2
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
September 2012 when I signed my first publ contract with Evernight Publishing
What inspired you to write your first book?
The characters in my head wouldn’t leave me alone. I threatened them, but they wouldn’t leave, only threatened back, to explode my brain
Do you have a specific writing style?
 Well, I write in first person, from a man’s pov, a cocky tone and pretty blunt. I do curse like a sailor. I think I was probably a man in a past life or something
How did you come up with the title?
 I came up with Invicta from a late night infomercial
“What do you want your readers to get out of your novels?”
That love is love, and it doesn’t matter your age, gender, race you work for it and fight for what you believe in
“Is the book mostly fantasy or do you think these situations could actually happen?”
Oh these situations could definitely happen
Now I love music just as much as reading, I normally listen to music while I am reading. Do you think that you characters have theme songs? If so what would they be? 
“Are the experiences fact based or from your imagination?”
Just my imagination
“Which other authors do you feel have had the most influences on you as both a reader and a writer?”
Books by Poppet Author
What book are you reading now?
At the moment, I’m not reading anything, but sure am anxious to get my hands on Kindle Alexander’s
”Have there been any authors that interest you by their writing styles or subjects?”
Absolutely so, Anne Rice of course, but Indie authors are Poppet Author, Kindle Alexander and Rue Volley
What are your current projects?
The Invicta Series which is a five part series, and on December 5 of this year, the final story in The Passion Series will be out
Do you see writing as a career?
Yes
If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Of course, there is always something you would change, but the pattern and storyline of the book wouldn’t change
Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Invicta Salvation is a story of Holt and Kade, how they connected and went through their journey for fifteen years. They achieve Invicta, a men’s go-go club, which soon becomes more that a club on book two. They didn’t want any of their dancers to go through the things they did. The actual place becomes their safe haven and the people become more that just co-worker’s. They actually will go through situations and help each other resolve or figure out how to handle them as a family unit                                                                                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                                                        
Who are your three favorite authors and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
Poppet Author, her passion and her research skills. You can bet if it’s in her books, it’s been researched thoroughly. Rue Volley-her imagination and the way she can bend the rules. I watched her from the very beginning, her drive and her perseverance and determination.  Kindle Alexander-for her sincerity. Her passion is incredible and drives. She is one of the most-tender hearted and caring people that I know.
“Have you done any promotional tours for your books?”
No never have before
Who designed the covers?
The Invicta Series, all of the covers are being done by a wonderful lady, Karrie Jax. She is a good friend of mine and does an excellent job. For Eight Second Cowboy it was Poppet who did it and the Passion Series and Naughty Box designs it was Rue Volley
What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Deciding what parts to reveal in first book and what to reveal in the other ones
“What did you learn from writing your book?”
That when you fight hard enough anything is achievable
Do you have any advice for other writers?
To keep writing and not let anyone hold you back. Follow your passion and dreams
Do have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
To thank them for all the support and love they’ve shown. To also say thanks to such a tight nit group, the M/M readers and authors are some of the most dedicated and loyal people that I know.
Which comes first for you, the character’s story or, the idea for the novel?
For me, the story idea
What advice do you have for someone who would like to become a published writer?
To watch the authors they want to be like and do what they do. Hone your skill and always weigh the options. Read the contract thoroughly and don’t be afraid to ask questions, we all had too
Is there anything else that you would like to add?
Just that Invicta Salvation is available now. And Invicta Sanctuary will be released on the 13 July, as part of the Naughty Box 2
I
just want to say thank you so much for taking the time to answer these for my readers and I. I look forward to seeing more work from you in the future.
Thank you so much for having me on. You are an awesome chick!                                                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

Blog/Web site: http://piperkay.blogspot.com/

Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/piper.kay.1

Twitter: https://twitter.com/PiperKayAuthor

Authorgraph: https://www.authorgraph.com/authors/PiperKayAuthor

Amazon page: http://www.amazon.com/Piper-Kay/e/B00AF9Z718/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1404159778&sr=8-2-ent

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6613775.Piper_Kay?from_search=true 

Ranks:

#1 on amazon 4/16/2014 in lgbt erotica Payce’s Passion

#1 on amazon 7/23/2013 in erotica The Naughty Box-A Perfect Passion

#1 on amazon 11/10/2013 5/2014 in Gay Romance, Western Eight Second Cowboy.

#1 on amazon 12/2013 in Gay, A Perfect Passion

 
More Trailers from Pipers Books

***Eight Second Cowboy***
 
***A Perfect Passion***
***Payce’s Passion***

As Kaiden McKenzie and Holt Mitchell prepare to celebrate their fifteenth anniversary, and the grand opening of their new club, Invicta, they take a look back on how their lives together began.

When Holt wakes up to an outraged father, he finds himself suddenly homeless and hungry. With the help and caring of a certain bad guy, Holt finds life isn’t quite so bad as it seems. All he needed was the right man to guide him along.

Kade has spent his life running from anyone and everyone who tries to get close, but when he meets up with Holt, he suddenly finds himself wishing for something more. Who knew he was someone’s knight in shining tattoos…

Book Two INVICTA: SANCTUARY will be apart of the naughty box 2 published by HOT INK PRESS on July 13th 2014

Holt owes me for this big time. I have to come out and save
his behind from the audience on his first live dance. I might just collect my
pay off from that smoking hot ass of his. I start with a body roll, drawing the
attention of the crowd back to me. Swishing my hips in circles, I roll them
out, then approach him.
Holt pops his out and sways from side to side, his ass
rotating in a figure eight motion. Arms over my head, I dance a circle around
him, grinding against him the whole way around. Back in front of him, I drop
one shoulder, then alternate with hands still in the air. I lean into him.
“Play with me, Holt.” I grin, and lick over my bottom
lip, giving him a wink. “Play along, I mean. Counter my moves, then own
them. Out do me. It’s the only time I’ll offer this.”
I lick up the side of his neck, then pull back, staring at
him. So smooth, sensual actually. I sway up against him, not keeping beat with
the music anymore, but making my own. I glide my hand around his waist, teasing
him, and gently pull him into me.
“Thank you, Kade,” he whispers.
 
“Whatever, dance. Pretend no one else is around. Just do
something already, Holt.” I’m afraid if he doesn’t move away from me, I might
be putting on a live fuck show instead

What Others are saying About INVICTA

 Another great read from Piper By Valerie
Piper Kay did it again!! Wow I totally loved this book.

 Piper Kay Is the Master of M/M Romance By Monique

Damn hot!
By Debbie
This book is hot as hell! A must read! Piper really know how
to get the blood flowing. I loved Kade. I could see him as Jake Bass
.

WOW! GREAT! FANTASTIC! LOVED IT!!
By Sue
Terrific and HOT as only Piper Kay can write characters with
depth. I loved the relationship between Kade and Holt. The street smart Kade
was made for the unsuspecting country bumpkin Holt. The time they spent in the
sheets was insta-wet, hot and then some. Oh, did I mention hot??

 
 


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