Categories
5 stars Angst Level Book coming of age Contemporary DA Dreamspinner Exploration Friends to lovers Gay Heat Index Hopelessly Crying Hurt/Abuse Hurt/comfort m/m Mild/low level heat Morgan New Adult Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Part of a Series Virgin

Anthony (A survivor story) by JP Barnaby

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents

http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=7889

 

30313959Blurb

 

Aaron Downing worshiped his mother. She saved his life. She did everything for him. But Anthony Downing has a different perspective. He sees the woman who tossed him into a basement for eight long years and forgot he existed. When Anthony decides he’s done being invisible, he packs up and heads for Detroit to stay with his Internet friend Jay, but fate intervenes.

Brendan Mears lost everything the day the man with a gun came into his father’s store. Now, he’s tethered to a business he can’t manage and a brother who resents him.

Different in all the ways that matter, Anthony and Brendan struggle to overcome their psychological obstacles, until a crushing betrayal sends them running for cover and each other.

Review

Though this can be a standalone, I don’t recommend it. It’s best read as part of the series or at least after Aaron.

Anthony is Aaron Downing’s youngest brother. Aaron was a victim of a kidnapping and it left his family a wreck. Since the kidnapping, Anthony has been relegated to the basement of the family both literally and figuratively. Now, he’s 18 and he’s had enough.

When the straight best friend he’s crushed on for years finally pushes him too far, Anthony hooks up with an online friend and runs away to Detroit. He’s almost made it when his car breaks down and he ends up being “saved” by the one family that probably understands his plight better than anyone.

Brendan was about Anthony’s age when he and his father were held up and shot at the liquor store the family owns. Now Brendan can’t leave his apartment for the crippling anxiety the thought provokes. His older brother Patrick is left to keep the store running and do what he can to help Brendan.

**

Wow. This story did not go how I thought it would.

On the one hand, it’s actually a bit darker than Aaron’s story – in the sense that we are left with a HFN and not the hard earned HEA of Aaron and Spencer’s story. ON the other hand, it’s not as horrific in terms of what happens to Anthony – specifically – but still so painful to read.

There’s also another couple twists in this that threw me for a loop – and had me kissing my own daughter – reminding myself that she’s safe.

If you were a fan of Aaron/Spencer, you’ll want to read this. If you haven’t read any of the series, but like dark, angsty reads with dark, angsty heroes – this is the book for you.

What I need now is to find out what happens to the brother – not saying which!

Highly Recommended

(LOVE the Mackey reference – GOD – I love when characters become family members, don’t you?!   )

5 of 5 stars

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Categories
3.5 stars Action/Adventure adult - 18+ Angst Level Book coming of age Contemporary Dreamspinner Enemies to Lovers Fade to black/No Steam Gay m/m Mild level angst Morgan Novella 20-160 pgs (20k-40k words) Opposites attract Paranormal Part of a Series Shifter

Daily Dose Short Story: Fieldwork by Charles Payseur

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/fieldwork-by-charles-payseur-7162-b

 

fieldworkBlurb

Agent Ignacio Ritter is content serving the CXO, the Central Xenomorph Organization, from the safety of his desk. He has good reasons for avoiding fieldwork like the plague: his parents died in the field, leaving him to be raised among wolf-shifters. Because of his adopted family, everyone thinks he is a wolf, a lie that protects him from the ridicule he’d face if he revealed the truth.

When the charming and dangerous tiger-shifter Agent Reed Daily chooses Ignacio to help close the books on a gang threatening to tear Chicago apart, Ignacio can’t refuse. Perhaps it’s the chance to avenge his parents, or perhaps it’s the tight fit of Reed’s suit and heat Reed’s smile ignites in Ignacio. When the chips are down and the whole city’s depending on him, will Ignacio prove himself a man or a mouse?

 

Category: Paranormal, Werewolves/Shifters, Mystery/Suspense

Pages: 38

 

Review

Ignacio “Nacho” Ritter is a government worker for a shifter organization. He’s a desk jockey and he likes it that way. His expertise is spread sheets and finances, so when a mob like situation arises he’s called out to work “in the field” and he’s terrified to do so. Everyone thinks he’s a wolf shifter – but he isn’t – he was only adopted by wolf shifters and it’s been easier to let the lie remain in place than tell the truth.

When Reed, another agent assigned to the case shows he’s interested in Ignacio, he can’t keep the secret to himself any longer or risk leaving his new found love interest in danger.

**

This was a fairly interesting, but very short story. It didn’t feel quite as fleshed out as some of the others in the collection, but it did have an interesting twist.

The romance took a back seat to Ignacio’s own growth, but it was still a guiding force.

It was fun, an enjoyable read.

3.5 of 5 stars

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Categories
A Tour/Guest Post/Blitz

Photo Tour and Excerpt by Alice Archer author of Everyday History!

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OS: Welcome to Alice Archer author of Everyday History!  Thanks for stopping by!

EverydayHistory_Banner_DSP

AA: Story Inspiration Photo Tour

by Alice Archer

Although most of the story takes place in Boston, Everyday History has its roots in the beautiful city of Freiburg, Germany, where I was living when I wrote it. Tucked into the southwestern corner of Germany, close to both the French and Swiss borders, Freiburg nestles against the baby foothills of the Black Forest mountains. It’s the perfect size of city for being able to get around easily on foot while still preserving some anonymity.

freiburg-town

I still think of Freiburg as my heart’s home, partly because of the many months, days, and hours I spent there hanging out with Henry and Ruben and figuring out how to write a novel. Henry and Ruben’s personalities and trials seeped into the walls of the lovely house in which I lived, which was the perfect place to write.

freiburg-stairway

I was comforted by the fact that the house, situated between a stately school and the train track that runs along the Black Forest foothills, was exactly as old as my mother, who had recently died. The bedroom I wrote in was the room in which my landlady, who lived downstairs, was born (Germans tend not to move very often).

Being surrounded every day by all of that stability and beauty and groundedness helped me immensely to find my way with this story. Immersed in so much that was old, I felt capable of exploring something new.

As I got to the later stages of writing, I moved sticky notes around on the side of the old wardrobe next the chair I sat in when I wrote, to help me clarify the final order of the scenes.

story-in-progress

Freiburg itself makes an appearance in Everyday History. Henry, who’s doing his best to forget about Ruben and move on, takes a trip back to Freiburg, where he studied as a young man. Without giving away any more of the story, I’ll share a photo with you of a building that delivers a moment of importance for Henry. It’s a real street corner in Freiburg where the words in German for “heaven” and “hell” are painted on a building.

freiburg-heaven-hell

What led Henry to that moment was a reunion with a little museum in a doorway. The museum exists in real life, but it’s in Basel, Switzerland. It’s the Hoosesagg Museum, “The Smallest Museum in Basel.” In the story, I moved it to Freiburg and invented the exhibit Henry saw. On the real museum’s website are photos of current and previous exhibits, as well as photos of the tiny passageway in which it’s located, so you can get a feel for the atmosphere Henry was walking through when he happened upon the museum in the story. The last time I was in Basel, the Hoosesagg Museum was showing a glorious exhibit of red toy vehicles.

basel-hoosesagg-museum

When I decided to leave Freiburg and move back to the US, I struggled to give my friends and family on both sides of the Atlantic an understandable reason, because they all knew that I had fulfilled a dream when I moved to Freiburg, and that I still loved living there. What I landed on to say that felt and still feels the most true is that “Freiburg has everything I want, except the things I can’t live without,” which includes my extended family, bookstores chocked wall to wall with treasures in English, and easier connections with my readers and fellow authors.

The following excerpt from Everyday History takes place fairly early in the story, when Ruben and Martin, a houseguest of Henry’s, have a little face-off.

(All photos in the article © Alice Archer.)

EverydayHistory_BookCover_DSPEveryday History Excerpt

“Have you known Henry long?” asks Martin, his casual tone contradicting an apparent eagerness to explore the topic. He ambles back to the couch and sits down, but when he bends to put on his shoes, his fingers seem to hurry to tie the laces.

Careful to betray no more than necessary, Ruben says, “I guess Henry didn’t talk about me.”

Martin shakes his head. “No, but he’s extremely private.”

“We worked together at the museum last year,” says Ruben. Oh, we “worked together,” did we? “Actually I was one of his high school interns.”

“Interesting,” says Martin. Asshat.

“How do you and Henry know each other?” asks Ruben, dreading the answer. Sure enough.

“We met at university in Germany. And were together there for a while.”

Ruben moves away to the windows to hide the expression on his face. Whatever it is, it’s more than he wants Martin to see.

But the window reminds him of the last time he was there, so he turns back.

“What happened?”

Martin takes a last look around the room, zips his suitcase, and lifts it off the couch.

“History,” says Martin.

“What do you mean?”

Ruben beats Martin to the door and holds it open for him.

“You’ll have to ask Henry.” Martin smiles a sad smile.


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                                                                                                AliceArcher_AuthorPhoto      About Alice

Alice Archer has messed about with words professionally for many years as an editor and writing coach. After living in more than eighty places and cobbling together a portable lifestyle, she has lots of story material to sort through. It has reassured her to discover that even though culture and beliefs can get people into a peck of trouble when they’re falling in love, the human heart beats the same in any language. She currently lives near Nashville. Maybe this move will stick.

Website: alicearcher.com
Alice on Facebook: www.facebook.com/alice.archer.author

Check out the other blogs on the Everyday History Blog Tour:

Jun 22 – MM Good Book Reviews

Jun 29 – Prism Book Alliance, Long and Short Reviews

Jun 30 – Dreamspinner Press Blog

Jul 1 – My Fiction Nook

Jul 2 – Love Bytes

 

Categories
4 stars adult - 18+ Angst Level Book coming of age Contemporary Dreamspinner Fated Mates Gay Heat Index m/m Mid level angst Mild/low level heat Morgan Novella 20-160 pgs (20k-40k words) Paranormal Part of a Series Shifter

Daily Dose Short Story: More Fish in the Sea by Fil Preis

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/more-fish-in-the-sea-by-fil-preis-7167-b

 

more-fish-in-the-seaBlurb

 

Travel agent Jarrett Joynson won’t let his cheating boyfriend spoil his dream vacation, but being alone in Hawaii is more difficult than he imagined. When his attempts to catch a new lover fail, he turns to his Wiccan faith to ask the moon for guidance.

Shark shape-shifter Kainalu Enakai is in a similar position. His last relationship fell apart because he couldn’t share the truth with his boyfriend. Now Kainalu is on the prowl, looking for a new distraction.

When the moon draws Jarrett and Kainalu together, sparks fly. But the old scars on both their hearts cause trouble between them. If they cannot learn to trust each other, it will put not only their relationship in danger, but possibly Jarrett’s life.

 

Category: Paranormal, Werewolf/Shifter, Mystery/Suspense

Pages: 49

 

Review

Jarrett just lost his long time boyfriend when he realized he’d been cheating on him for a long time. Determined to keep the vacation he’d booked for them as a couple, he flies to Hawaii and sets off to enjoy himself. He spends time talking to the Goddess Moon, he’s wiccan and being connected to his faith is one of the things he argued about with his ex.

Kainalu is a shark shifter who fears ever finding a mate. His last boyfriend fled when he began to confess his powers and now Kainalu’s gun shy.

When Jarrett and Kainalu meet at a bar, they’re both attracted to one another but unwilling to take a risk on what has to be a temporary fling. But when they run into one another again, this time just as Kainalu has shifted in the water near Jarrett, they realize that the Goddess might be showing them something they both need.

**

I love unique shifter stories!! This felt like a more aboriginal type tale with shark people having a clear link to early humans but losing their relationship over time. Though the two didn’t get a lot of time with one another, we are left with the feeling that things will definitely work out for them this time.

Very creative and well done.

4 of 5 stars

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Categories
4.5 stars adult - 18+ Angst Level coming of age Contemporary Dreamspinner Friends to lovers Gay Heat Index Homophobia Hurt/Abuse m/m Mid level angst Mild/low level heat Morgan Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) second chance at love

A More Perfect Union Anthology by BG Thomas, Michael Murphy, Jamie Fessenden, and J. Scott Coatsworth

 

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/a-more-perfect-union-7149-b

 

a-more-perfect-unionBlurb

On June 26, 2015, the Supreme Court of the United States made a monumental decision, and at long last, marriage equality became the law of the land. That ruling made history, and now gay and lesbian Americans will grow up in a country where they will never be denied the right to marry the person they love.

But what about the gay men who waited and wondered all of their lives if the day would ever come when they could stand beside the person they love and say, “I do?”

Here, four accomplished authors—married gay men—offer their take on that question as they explore same-sex relationships, love, and matrimony. Men who thought legal marriage was a right they would never have. Men who, unbelievably, now stand legally joined with the men they love. With this book, they share the magic and excitement of dreams that came true—in tales of fantasy and romance with a dose of their personal experiences in the mix.

To commemorate the anniversary of full marriage equality in the US, this anthology celebrates the idea of marriage itself, and the universal truth of it that applies to us all, gay or straight.

Review

This is a delightful collection of “average joes”. Gay men with varying beliefs about marriage and their stories that do all lead to the big event. They all touch on the impact the change in the legal status played in their decisions and how it made them feel about the institution itself.

It’s sweet, touching, fascinating and each story is unique and heart-warming. Well recommended!

Flames by J. Scott Coatsworth

Two men, Alex and Gio, lovers of a decade, argue about getting married. Alex does not want to, Gio does. On the night Gio sets to pop the question formally, the two fight and Gio ends up injured in a house fire.

This is the story of his fight back and Alex’s revision of his life without Gio and why he must do what it takes to keep the love of his life with him always.

**

What I liked about this story – besides the sweet HEA – is the discussion of the legalities that marriage offer a couple that are often overlooked or taken for granted. Marriage is more than just a commitment, it holds legal significance and it’s amazing that up until recently that’s been denied to all couples equally.

Jeordi and Tom by Michael Murphy

Jeordi and Tom are from a small town in Kentucky where they scrape by, financially. When the laws finally change they decide to get married but many obstacles spring up – seemingly to keep them from success. They meet a rich benefactor in the form of an older gay couple who not only help them with their wedding plans but also give them some other wonderful world experiences.

**

What was really lovely about this story is the sense of “family” that gets demonstrated. When your flesh and blood won’t or can’t help you, family becomes what you make of it where you can build it. It’s a really beautiful concept.

Destined by Jamie Fessenden

 Jay and Wallace met several times over the years before they became a couple, they they dated for over a decade before deciding to move in together. When the laws changed they had to decide if marriage was right for them.

**

This is a straight out love story that covers years and years. It’s not picture perfect, but the love Jay and Wallace share is. I enjoyed the sense of “rightness” that this couple finally experienced when all the pieces fell into place.

Someday by B.G. Thomas

Lucas and Dalton have been friends forever. For Lucas, he knew Dalton was “the one” when he was in kindergarten, but Dalton took much longer to come to the same conclusion.

**

I love a good “friends to lovers” story and the HEA made this a wonderful story. I just love proposal stories and this was so beautiful!

Overall 4.25 of 5 stars, recommended as a fantastic look at the politics behind the romance and yet, very romantic still.

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Categories
5 stars adult - 18+ Angst Level Bi-Sexual Book Contemporary DA Dancer Demi Exploration Gay GFY/OFY Heat Index Homophobia Hopelessly Crying Hurt/Abuse Insta Love m/m Morgan NetGalley Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Part of a Series Scorching/high heat Trans

Fierce & Fabulous (Sassy Boyz #1) by Elizabeth Varlet

release day review

29951622Blurb
Fans of Heidi Cullinan will devour this scorching new male/male series by Elizabeth Varlet. Behind the Sassy Boyz’s seductive smiles and sinful dance moves are desires that will leave readers breathless.

Fitch Donovan never thought a lap dance could change his life, but from the moment the gorgeous dancer’s lips touch his, his world comes screeching to a halt. No matter how hard he tries, he can’t shake the desire that rocks him to his core. He’s longed for this passion all his life—he just never dreamed he’d find it with another man.

Sharing a soul-shaking kiss with a straight boy is the kind of drama Ansel Becke just doesn’t need. Spotlights aren’t made for two and Ansel prefers to keep things on a one-night-only basis. So when Fitch shows up asking for an encore, Ansel knows he should send his gorgeous ass packing.

Though Ansel tries to pretend that what’s between him and Fitch is far from fabulous, there’s something about the big, burly contractor that makes Ansel’s world sparkle in a way no amount of glitter ever could. And Fitch will do whatever it takes to convince Ansel that when the thing you need most in the world falls right into your lap, you’d be a fool to let it go.

Review

The blurb really gives a good idea of the basic storyline, so I won’t go into more detail here other than to say this: Ansel is more than just a dancer – he is a very complex character with some pretty big “imperfections” and his “broken” needs Fitch and vice versa.

**

This is a new author for me (and a new series) and WOWOWOW! talk about impressed! I was really blown out of my seat by this.

I saw a great review for this on GR and had it already in my lineup from NetGalley but it’s not coming out for MONTHS. I try to keep my review lists in order – simply to not get behind in my reading – but every once in a while a book comes along and I just have to read it NOW! This is one of those.

I just loved how the very straight Fitch is portrayed and how the change to his psyche is portrayed. It felt very real and organic and though I think the author could have developed him better as identifying something like demi-sexual I applaud the fact that Fitch never claims to be gay. He simply falls in love with Ansel. That’s it. He just loves Ansel.

The other think I adored was how Ansel just comes out and tells it like it is.

Fitch:“But you wear heels and makeup. What’s the difference?”
Ansel:“I don’t tuck, most queens do. They often wear fake breasts too. Drag is for show. A performance. We don’t try to pass ourselves off as women. We dress like this every day. We just like pretty things.”
“So you’re trans?” Fitch scratched his jaw before popping another onion ring in his mouth.
“It depends on what you mean by trans. Transgender, I am not. I don’t identify as female. I enjoy everything male about myself. But technically I guess you could call me a transvestite. We prefer androgynous more than anything, a little bit of both and neither at the same time. Completely ambiguous. But personally I don’t like labels. I’m just Ansel fucking Becke and screw anyone who has a problem with it. I like heels. And I love makeup because it’s fun to play with color. It’s like painting.”

I just thought it was a tremendously awesome way to think about gender fluidity and how brave Ansel is for embracing all that society would make him feel “less than” for. It was awesome. And on the same hand – it was this that he had to struggle with so fiercely every single day – just to be himself.

The love between these guys – though it seemed kinda “insta” – isn’t. They build on it slowly and surely with lots hurdles along the way. Most importantly, Ansel’s drinking. I thought his alcoholism – though it seemed a bit too easily tackled – was at least addressed in a way that made sense and felt like it was on the right track.

The smexy times with these guys was SMOKIN’ and the feels were there, too.

This had all the things I love in a romance: real, unique characters, hot smexy times, deep and believable emotion and the time to see the relationship develop while not drawing out the angst unnecessarily.

I highly recommend this book and can’t wait for more in the series.

5 of 5 stars

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Categories
3.5 stars adult - 18+ Angst Level Book Contemporary Dreamspinner Gay Heat Index Little to no angst Mid level steam/heat Morgan Novella 20-160 pgs (20k-40k words) Paranormal Part of a Series Shifter

Daily Dose Spiked and Feathered by Jessica Walsh

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/spiked-and-feathered-by-jessica-walsh-7166-b

spiked-and-featheredBlurb

Anthony’s had the day from hell at his call center job, and he plans to drink away the memory, so he finds the nearest club and gets started. Lucky for him there’s an attractive man in the crowd who’s willing to act without too many questions. A hot trip to the back of the bar and some heavy action is in order.
The next morning Anthony wakes in an unfamiliar bed to a hellish headache and the heavenly scent of coffee. He didn’t ask questions the night before, so why ask them now? Okay, maybe one. Why does his attractive one-night stand have feathers?

 

Category: Paranormal, Werewolves/Shifter
Pages: 21

Review

So this was a bit strange. Fun, but strange.

I wasn’t quite sure how comfortable I was about the smexy times here. It didn’t feel great when the guy was so wasted he could barely stand and it definitely didn’t feel great in the morning.

Still, I enjoyed the unique shifter world created here – though most of it is still a mystery – enough that I’d look into more from this author in the future.

I guess I wasn’t sure what to make of this as a story. It ended as a HFN, didn’t tell much about the shifter himself or what the deal was between these two, and there were absolutely zero “feels”. Just two drunk guys having sex… so….if that’s what you’re in the mood for – give this a shot – it’s quite short and was interesting to say the least.

3.5 of 5 stars

3.5-stars-small

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Categories
A Tour/Guest Post/Blitz

A More Perfect Union by J Scott Coatsworth and others Guest Post and Excerpt

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Dreamspinner Press Presents TOMORROW!

http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=7854
A More Perfect Union by:
B.G. Thomas
J. Scott Coatsworth
Jamie Fessenden
Michael Murphy
Cover Artist: Reese Dante
Length: 104K / 350 Pages

coverBlurbs

On June 26, 2015, the Supreme Court of the United States made a monumental decision, and at long last, marriage equality became the law of the land. That ruling made history, and now gay and lesbian Americans will grow up in a country where they will never be denied the right to marry the person they love.

But what about the gay men who waited and wondered all of their lives if the day would ever come when they could stand beside the person they love and say “I do”?

Here, four accomplished authors—married gay men—offer their take on that question as they explore same-sex relationships, love, and matrimony. Men who thought legal marriage was aright they would never have. Men who, unbelievably, now stand legally joined with the men they love. With this book, they share the magic and excitement of dreams that came true—in tales of fantasy and romance with a dose of their personal experiences in the mix.

To commemorate the anniversary of full marriage equality in the US, this anthology celebrates the idea of marriage itself—and the universal truth of it that applies to us all, gay or straight.

banner

 

 

Someday, by B.G. Thomas

Lucas Arrowood is walking to school on his first day of kindergarten when he meets Dalton Churchill—a boy who stops and helps him tie his shoe. He knows from that moment he is going to marry that boy one day. “Boys can’t marry other boys,” his mother explains, but that doesn’t stop Lucas. He knows what he wants.

He and Dalton become best friends—and then, no matter how much he resists, Dalton falls in love with Lucas. Dalton’s very conservative family can’t accept that their boy loves another boy, but finally Dalton stands up for love and for Lucas. Still, he declares he won’t marry Lucas until it is legal everywhere. He hates the “Commitment Ceremonies” gay men have. They aren’t the real thing. Why bother?

So Lucas waits for his day. The day same-sex marriage finally becomes legal and he can be joined forever with the love of his life.

Flames, by J. Scott Coatsworth

Alex and Gio had a big fight, and Alex ran away. Then a fire at home destroyed the life they had built together, and threatened to take Gio away from him.

Alex had always thought love was enough to keep them together. Why did they need wedding rings or legal certificates? But now, with Gio lost in a coma, his mother has banished Alex from his side.

What if Alex’s voice is the only thing that can bring Gio back from the brink? Their memories are all Gio has left, and the urge to just let go is getting stronger.

Still, nothing can keep Alex from Gio’s side. If it’s against the rules, he’ll break them. In stolen moments alone together, Alex fights to bring him back, one memory at a time.

Destined, by Jamie Fessenden

When Jay and Wallace first meet at an LGBTQ group, they have no idea they’ll be dating six years later. In fact, they quickly forget each other’s names. But although fate continues to throw them together, the timing is never quite right. Finally they’re both single and realize they want to be together… but now they can’t find each other! With determination and the help of mutual friends, Jay and Wallace can finally pursue the relationship they’ve both wanted for so long.

It’s only the beginning of the battles they’ll face to build a life together.

From disapproving family members all the way to the state legislature, Jay and Wallace’s road to happily ever after is littered with obstacles. But they’ve come too far to give up the fight.

Jeordi and Tom, by Michael Murphy

Living as an open, loving gay couple in the rural South isn’t easy—even today.

When Jeordi and Tom move in together and come out to their families, Jeordi’s family does not take the news especially well. When yelling doesn’t work, they send in one sibling after another to try to separate the couple. When that fails, they call out their pastor to help Jeordi see the error of his ways. But Jeordi’s love for Tom is greater than anything they throw at them.

When an accident sends Jeordi to the hospital, his family goes too far when they try to keep Tom from visiting his partner. Jeordi and Tom are determined to do everything in their power to gain legal protection so this can never happen again. But when a bigoted county clerk refuses to issue them a marriage license, Jeordi decides a big, bold effort is called for, which is precisely what he sets in moVon so no one can ever separate him from Tom again.

handsExcerpts

Someday, by B.G. Thomas

“The first time Lucas Arrowood saw Dalton was on his way to his first day of kindergarten. His mother was walking him to school, he was very excited, and his right shoelace was flopping, untied.

“Baby,” said his mom. “Let’s sit down and try to tie your shoe.”

He looked up at her, excitement temporarily quashed. He couldn’t do it. Couldn’t tie his shoe. And he was supposed to be able to. His mother had tried to show him how—over and over again—but he couldn’t get the laces to go where they were supposed to go, and it just fell apart. He couldn’t do it. If his teacher found out, would they make him go home? Would he have to wait until next year? That would be horrible!

“Hey, you can do it. It’s easy!”

Lucas gave a little jump, turned around, and sighed as he looked into the narrow dark eyes of the most beautiful human being he had ever seen.

“Want me to help?” the boy asked, flipping his mop of dark brown hair out of his eyes with a toss of his head. “I taught a bunch of kids last year when I was in kindergarten.”

A bunch of kids hadn’t known how to tie their shoes? That perked up his ears. Lucas looked up at his mother.

She smiled. “Do you want him to help?”

Then he realized something. He did want the boy to help him. He thought he would do anything the boy wanted him to do, even ask his mom to take the training wheels off his bike (which was a big scary because he was afraid of falling and getting hurt!).

“Sit down,” said the boy, pointing to the landscaping wall along the sidewalk.”

Lucas sat.

“What’s your name?” asked Lucas’s mother.

“Dalton Churchill. Like Winston Churchill. Only it’s Dalton.”

He smiled, and Lucas knew Dalton was the most beautiful boy on the planet.

“Who’s Winston Churchill?” Lucas asked.

Dalton shrugged and got down on one knee before Lucas. “I don’t know. I think he’s a minister. Okay, now, first you pull your laces up and then cross them over, like this.” Dalton demonstrated.

“I can tie a knot,” Lucas said, wanting very much not to look like a complete dope in front of Dalton. Then he frowned. “It’s the other part I get mixed up on.”

“That’s cool,” Dalton said, tying the knot. “Okay…. So here’s the tricky part. First you make a loop and stick it up so it looks like a tree—see?”

Lucas nodded. He wasn’t sure the upward turned loop looked much like a tree, but he wasn’t going to tell Dalton that.

“Then you take the other lace and wrap it around the bottom like this—like a dog running around the tree.”

Lucas smiled. “My neighbor has a dog. His name is Super Mario.”

“That’s a great name,” Dalton said, laughing.

Then he finished showing Lucas how to tie his shoe.

“Wow,” Lucas said.

But then Dalton untied the shoe.

“Hey!” cried Lucas.

“Now you do it,” Dalton said. He nodded. “You can. I know you can. Easy.”

Lucas wanted to yell, “No, I can’t!” but he quite suddenly knew he could not disappoint the pretty boy with the beautiful eyes. He sighed. What had Dalton said about a tree? He made a loop with one of the laces.

“Just like that, but the other one. Unless you’re a southpaw.”

Lucas looked up through his own dark bangs. “Huh?”

“Southpaw means left-handed.”

“Oh!” Lucas giggled. “I’m not.”

“Tree!” Dalton ordered, brows knitted together.

So Lucas made a loop with his shoelace.

“Yes!” Dalton said with such enthusiasm Lucas would have thought he’d ridden down to the corner and back on his bike without training wheels. He laughed and then thought about dogs running around the base of trees. A moment later, Lucas had tied his shoe. His mother clapped.

“Yes,” shouted Dalton. “I knew you could do it, Lucas.”

Dalton walked the rest of the way to school with them. But even better, he also promised to walk Lucas to school the next day.

Flames, by J. Scott Coatsworth

Monday, September 27

There was only this moment. This place. Alex holding Gio’s hand, gently because of the burns on the back of Gio’s arm and hand. The sounds of the breathing machine came in regular soft sighs.

The little green box held in Alex’s other hand–and all it symbolized between them.

All their life together had shrunk down to this moment, this place, this plea. “Please wake up, Gio. Amore mio, svegliati.”

Sunday, September 12. Two weeks earlier

Alex was late getting home, and he was in a foul mood from the long, difficult day at work. One of the properties he’d made a bid on had fallen through, and another client had all but called him a bald-faced liar.

He was looking forward to getting home, taking a long hot shower, then crawling into bed.

Alex was startled to find a whole meal, complete with wine and candles, laid out on their dining room table. Gio must have spent the whole day cooking.

Alex was late. He’d been delayed with his angry client, and to make matters worse, his phone had up and died halfway through the afternoon and he’d been without his car charger.”

“He was already annoyed when he walked in the door.

“Welcome home, amore,” Gio called from the kitchen.

“I had a hell of a day….” He caught a whiff of whatever Gio was cooking.

“Come sit down. I’ve got everything ready.”

The dining room looked like a Martha Stewart production of a telenovella Thanksgiving. “I’m sorry. I’m not really hungry. Things were the shits at work today.”

“Sorry to hear that. Have a seat.” Gio grabbed his elbow and urged him toward his chair. “Food makes everything better.”

Alex was starting to get annoyed. “Look, I’m sorry, but I’m not hungry. I just want to wash up–”

“That’s just the job talking.” Gio took his arm again.

“Knock it off! I’m not in the mood tonight.”

Gio looked hurt, but Alex plowed on, too incensed to stop.

“This isn’t some kind of June and Ward Cleaver relationship.”

“I just–”

“You have to let go of your stupid, unrealistic expectations of me and this relationship.”

Gio frowned. “That’s bullshit, and you know it. Just because you had a bad day at work, there’s no reason to take it out on me.”

He was right. But Alex couldn’t admit it. “Just leave me the fuck alone,” he said, grabbing his phone charger and storming out. He’d find somewhere else to sleep tonight.”

Destined, by Jamie Fessenden

1999

Doug had seemed terrific when Jay first met him. He was funny, attentive, good in bed, and Jay’s family thought he was great. At family gatherings, that is—not in bed. They were living together in short order.

But after two years, things weren’t going so well. They’d moved to Dover, which allowed Jay to get back in touch with some of his college friends, but their relationship seemed to grow rockier by the day. They fought constantly, though Jay was never really sure what they were fighting about. They just didn’t… fit anymore.

But still he tried. Jay was nothing if not stubborn.

His ties to the pagan/Wiccan world had long ago faded away, since Doug thought that stuff was weird and creepy. In fact, his ties to anything outside the tech industry had pretty much withered to nothing. He worked long hours, during which he thought about nothing but computers and switches and routers. It paid well, and raises were frequent, so he was caught up in the game his coworkers played—pushing for promotions or transfers every six months to a year in order to get salary increases. Like his coworkers, he had an E*TRADE account and spent time between support calls attempting to build a stock portfolio. He had the sense not to gamble the small amount of savings he had, but it was a fun game to play.

But he was unsatisfied. He couldn’t quite put a finger on why until one Saturday, when he was sitting at Café on the Corner and his friend, Steve, happened by. Steve had been part of the medieval reenactment group Jay hung out with in college, and apparently he was still involved with them.

“Michaelmas is coming up,” Steve pointed out, referring to one of the large feasts the group “put on every year. “It’s going to be at the Unitarian Church. You should come.”

Jay couldn’t see that happening. He no longer had any of his medieval “garb,” and Doug was likely to turn his nose up at the idea of hanging out with a bunch of reenactors all day.

Jay said diplomatically, “I’ll think about it.”

“Well, at least stop by the monthly Wiccan group. Julie’s usually there, and Mark. A whole bunch of the old crowd. That’s tomorrow. Same place.”

It would be nice to see some of them. And Doug was working on Sunday. “That might be fun.”

“Are you still writing?”

He wasn’t. Jay had written a lot of science fiction stories in college, and he’d talked about getting published one day. But that, like everything else he’d enjoyed in those days, seemed like nothing more than a dream he’d once had, barely remembered.

This conversation was getting depressing.

“So,” he asked, trying to change the subject, “do you still sing?”

Steve grinned with excitement. “Yeah, man! My band is putting together our second CD. It’s gonna be awesome!”

The more he talked about his life, the more it became clear Steve was barely scraping by financially. But he was doing what he loved, and he seemed just as happy with his life as he’d been in college. Jay, on the other hand, had plenty of money. He had a career now, a boyfriend, a new car, and a nice apartment. He’d thought he was doing okay, but now he realized exactly why he’d been feeling so uneasy. His life had veered off course. In just five years, he’d lost touch with everything that had been fun and creative in himself. He was no longer Jay.

And he missed himself.

Jeordi and Tom, by Michael Murphy

“When the front door of the trailer slammed shut with a loud bang, followed immediately by an animalistic howl of rage and frustration, Tom knew Jeordi was home. He snickered and shook his head.

“Hey, babe,” Tom called out. “I forgot this was the day you were going to visit your parents. It went that well, huh?”

One glance at his boyfriend told Tom all he needed to know. Despite the scowl and look of anger and frustration on Jeordi’s face, it only took one glance at the man to ignite the most sensitive parts of his nervous system (and everything connected to it).

He couldn’t help but smile at the sight of Jeordi. He wasn’t handsome in the New York runway model sense, but was handsome in the real man sense. Jeordi turned heads every time he walked down the street, although he consistently missed the many glances people cast his way.

All Jeordi saw when he looked at himself was that he wasn’t tall, and he felt his ears were too big. Tom daily told Jeordi that he was the most studly man he’d ever known—and he quietly gave thanks that the man was all his.

Tom felt two strong hands wrap around his waist as he stood at the sink in their kitchen. Carefully setting down the dish he’d been washing, he leaned his head back against his boyfriend’s solid shoulder, brushing his smooth cheek against Jeordi’s fuzzy cheek—fuzzy not from a beard but from a strong five o’clock shadow the man dependably had every day by late afternoon. Jeordi hated it, but Tom loved it and loved rubbing one part or another of his body over the stubble.

“Love you, babe,” Tom whispered. “I’m glad you’re home.”

“Why?” Jeordi whispered into Tom’s ear.”

“Why? Why? Why do I keep subjecting myself to the same crap?”

“So, they didn’t throw their arms open and tell you they’ve joined PFLAG and ask for your advice on what to wear in the next Pride Day parade?”

Jeordi snorted. “Um, that would be a great big no.”

“What did they do this time?” Tom asked.

“Prayed—and then some. They tried to have some kind of healing service to rid me of the evil that had ‘grabbed hold’ of me, to quote my mother. They said they needed to cast the devil out of my body.”

“Oh, isn’t that special,” Tom joked.

“Not so much,” Jeordi disagreed.

“Was it just your parents?”

“Oh, no. That’s what made this one more frustrating. They had their minister there. He brought a backup minister—poor kid looked freaked out just being in the same room with a known homosexual. Don’t know what he thought was going to happen.”

“They upped the ante, I see,” Tom said.

“Oh, there’s more,” Jeordi said.

“More?”

“Hell, yes. They had some of my more uptight brothers there with them this time.”

“They succeeded in getting any of your brothers to be in the same room at the same time? How the hell did they swing that one?”

“Don’t know. Must have been one hell of a bribe. They, of course, brought their wives, I guess to show me how a good strong Christian heterosexual marriage works. They pissed me off so much I slipped and asked Beau how he could take part in something like that when he’d been off screwing half the women in the county. He didn’t appreciate it. I guess his wife didn’t know he was a hound dog she needed to keep on a tighter leash.”

Tom stopped what he was doing and dropped his head back, deep in thought. “Hmm, your brother Beau would look damned good in a collar—and naked,” he said. “Now, if you maybe added a blindfold, put him on his knees with his hands cuffed behind his back—now that’s just freaking hot. Maybe I should call his wife and give her a few suggestions. How do you think she’d take that? I’d be doing it strictly to help her out since I doubt she’d ever come up with an idea like that on her own. And of course I’d need to be there to help her, you know, to consult.”

“Don’t go there,” Jeordi warned with a chuckle. Beau was beautiful, but unfortunately he knew it and wasn’t at all opposed to spreading his beauty around to any and all women who’d have him. “At least that got the two of them out of the whole ritualistic crap my mother had planned for the weekly visit.”

“Two down, ten to go,” Tom said.

Tom turned around and wrapped his arms around Jeordi, kissing his neck. “I love you, babe,” he whispered into Jeordi’s ear as he held tightly to his man.

“I’m so glad you do. My family certainly doesn’t.”

“Oh, they love you. They just don’t understand it because the playing field has changed since you came out,” Tom said.

Buy Links:

Dreamspinner eBook: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=7854

Dreamspinner paperback: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=7855

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/More-Perfect-Union-B-G-Thomas-ebook/dp/B01GMDKIQ4

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1123882859?ean=2940158105135

Kobo: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/a-more-perfect-union-10

All Romance eBooks: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-amoreperfectunion-2053791-166.html

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30304246-a-more-perfect-union

Author Bios

author-thomas-bgB.G. Thomas

B.G. Thomas lives in Kansas City with his husband of more than a decade. They’ve been married twice. First in 2005—although it wasn’t legal. They jumped the broom (as well as the sword) and were married in heart in front of their friends and loved ones. Then in 2014, they flew to Baltimore and made it legal (and couldn’t have without the help of B.G.’s fans who practically funded the entire weekend!). He can’t get enough of seeing that gold wedding band on his hand, even two years later. /react-text

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

Excited about the growing male/male romance market, he submitted a story and was thrilled when it was accepted in four days. Since then the stories have poured out of him. “It’s like I’m somehow making up for a lifetime’s worth of stories!” /react-text

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

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/bgthomaswriter
Website: https://bthomaswriter.wordpress.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4053647.B_G_Thomas

author-coatsworth-j-scottJ. Scott Coatsworth:

Scott has been writing since elementary school. After leaving writing for twenty years, Mark, his husband, told him “the only one stopping you from writing is you.”

Since then, Scott has gone back to writing in a big way, finishing more than a dozen short stories – some new, some that he had started years before – and seeing his first sale. He’s embarking on a new trilogy, and also runs the Queer Sci Fi site, a support group for writers of gay sci fi, fantasy, and supernatural fiction.

Mark and Scott have been together for twenty four years. They met at the Pacific Center, an LGBT center in Berkeley, California, in 1992. They dated for two weeks, and then Scott moved in with Mark, and the rest is history. They run their own business together, study Italian, and are almost never found apart.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jscottcoatsworthauthor
Website: https://www.jscottcoatsworth.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8392709.J_Scott_Coatsworth

author-fessenden-jamieJamie Fessenden

Jamie Fessenden set out to be a writer in junior high school. He published a couple of short pieces in his high school’s literary magazine, but it wasn’t until he met his partner, Erich, almost twenty years later, that he began writing again in earnest. With Erich alternately inspiring and goading him, Jamie published his first novella in 2010, and has since published over twenty other novels and novellas.

After legally marrying in 2010, buying a house together, and getting a dog, Jamie and Erich have settled down to life in the country, surrounded by wild turkeys, deer, and the occasional coyote. A few years ago, Jamie was able to quit the tech support job that gave him insanely high blood pressure. He now writes full-time… and feels much better.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jamie.fessenden.7
Website: https://jamiefessenden.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4476044.Jamie_Fessenden

author-murphy-michaelMichael Murphy

Michael Murphy met his husband Dan thirty-four years ago during a Sunday service at MCC in Washington, DC when a hot, smart man sat down beside him. Due to a shortage of hymnals they had to share. The touch of one hand on the other in that moment was electric. Sparks flew that day. Though neither had planned it, they spent the day together followed by the night. From that day, for more than three decades they’ve rarely been separated, each finding in the other their soul mate.

In the District of Columbia, where they lived, marriage became possible in early March 2010. The minute it happened they were in line to get a marriage license, only to be stumped because the license required the name of the person who was going to marry them. There was such a sudden rush of same sex couples wanting to get married that the office already had a two-month backlog before an appointment could be secured. Since they weren’t at all convinced that the Congress wasn’t going to step in and do something stupid to take away this right, they started calling everywhere to find someone who would marry them. It might be legal, but finding someone to marry them was proving to be a challenge.

When an article appeared in the newspaper telling of a small, local United Methodist Church that had decided to go against general church policy because marriage equality mattered deeply to them, a conversation started. After a series of emails and phone calls, suddenly they were seated with two retired UMC ministers who were willing to risk it all to do the right thing. A few days later, license in hand, surrounded by a handful of friends and their best dog, Shadow, they were finally legally married.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/michael.murphy.9250
Website: http://gayromancewriter.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6450548.Michael_Murphy

Categories
A Poll/ Voting

Winner Best Audio Book Released in May 2016

 

Provalis-Experience

blue-ribbon-number-1

Tied for First Place: 51KGdVDORkL._SL300_ Spook Squad by Jordan Castillo Price Narrated by Gomez Pugh and

61hq5dX9zHL._SL150_Harley’s Achille by Sandrine Gasq-Dion Narrated by Klaus Von Hohenloe

number-2

 

61f+gHWGB8L._SL300_Second Place goes to Clockwork Tangerine by Rhys Ford Narrated by Greg Tremblay

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Congrats to our Winners!


audible_logo_dark_bigger2And to Teresa for commenting – she wins a free audiobook from Audible!

 

Categories
A Tour/Guest Post/Blitz

Book Blitz: Picked Fresh (Naked Organics Book 2) by Posy Roberts Giveaway!

13106711_10156802171995414_1691349163_o

 

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

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

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

Buy Links:
Universal buy link: myBook.to/PickedFresh
FREE WITH KINDLE UNLIMITED
Amazon: http://amzn.to/1YAvdsB
Amazon CA: https://goo.gl/RiKuus
Amazon UK: https://goo.gl/x2GFUo
Amazon AU: https://goo.gl/0C8Bqe

Book Trailer:
Direct Link: https://youtu.be/4nebNLdYrHQ

Road trip playlist:
Direct Link: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLvbpmkwgV3gGU26L6W_0Gq_8fYeZJbWKv

Read For Free:
Origin Story:
Interested in reading how Hudson ended up living at Kaleidoscope Gardens? Read Naked Origins—Hudson for free. This is not a romance, but for those who want to dig a little deeper, this story covers much of Hudson’s history that is hinted at in Picked Fresh. Visit https://posyroberts.com/2016/02/02/free-read-naked-origins/ to read the summary and download it.

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30296892-picked-fresh

In The Series:
Farm Fresh (Naked Organics #1)
FREE WITH KINDLE UNLIMITED
Amazon: http://amzn.to/1UItlbq
Amazon CA: https://goo.gl/KTZHBM
Amazon UK: https://goo.gl/twt1QR
Amazon AU: https://goo.gl/BYf0Jf

Excerpt:
Jude shifted in his seat and stared at Hudson. Hudson couldn’t take his eyes off the road, but the desire to turn toward Jude and mirror him was overwhelming. “What was your first impression of me when I met you at the farmers market?”
“Should I be diplomatic or honest?”
“Honest.”
Hudson ran that day over in his mind. It was crystal clear, still, even though it had been more than nine months ago. Jude had meandered from stand to stand. He initially stood out from the crowd because of what he was wearing: a bright blue, almost turquoise wool coat over a black turtleneck and tight black jeans. In the blur of quilted plaid flannel and fleece hoodies in various shades of drab, olive, and Carhartt, Jude was all Hudson could see.
“I couldn’t keep my eyes off you. You were… stunning.” He shook his head. “I don’t know another word for it. I was talking to some customer about how we raised our chickens, and when I saw you, I stopped midsentence. I stared, felt like a dirty old man because you looked so young, and when I turned back to the woman to carry on our conversation, I had no idea what we’d been talking about. Literally none. It was like looking at you sucked the words out of my throat and the thoughts right out of my head.”
Jude chuckled. “Seriously? Was it the coat?”
“It made you stand out, but no, it wasn’t the coat. It was everything about you. Your broad shoulders and your hair and your eyes and your fucking lips.”
“You like my lips?” Jude pulled his rose-flavored lip stuff out of his front pocket and made a show of smearing it across the bottom one. Then he rubbed his lips together and licked them, all while staring at Hudson with soft bedroom eyes.
The bus vibrated, a jagged noise piercing Hudson’s ears as he drove too far to the right, edging his tires onto the rumble strip. “¡Coño!” He maneuvered back into the center of his lane.
Jude laughed. Hudson’s heart thundered against his rib cage.
“You’re evil,” Hudson said. “Evil, I tell you!”
“Maybe.” Jude bit at his bottom lip.
“Stop. Stop tempting me with your fucking gorgeous mouth. I can’t have you doing that shit while I’m driving.”
“Okay.” Jude smirked but kept his tongue and teeth from doing anything else. He put away those hazel sex-eyes too. “So, how did you see this trip going down?”
“Just like that?” Hudson was incredulous.
“What?”
“You can just turn it on and off like a switch?”
“With you, sure.”
“Well, I can’t.” Hudson gestured to his crotch, where his dick was obvious, thick, and quickly moving on its way to fully hard, even though Jude had stopped the licking and the biting.
“Want me to touch you?” Jude’s voice was breathy as he slid his warm palm up Hudson’s inner thigh. He thumbed over the head of Hudson’s cock, and Hudson got harder. Jude played with just the head, moving back and forth, his touch light and delicious.
“Want me to drive off the road?” Hudson managed not to sound choked off.
“No.” Jude pulled his hand away and smiled like the devil. “I want you to drive. And I want you to tell me about what you want to do on this trip besides the obvious. And for the record, turning it off doesn’t happen like a switch. Turning me on with one look, easy!”
“You’re dangerous.”
“Damn right I am.”

Author Bio (photo & logo attached):
Posy Roberts writes about the realistic struggles of men looking for love. Whether her characters are family men, drag queens, or lonely men searching for connections, they all find a home in her stories.
Posy is a Jill of all trades and master of the drill and paintbrush. She’s married to a partner who makes sure she doesn’t forget to eat or sleep during her writing frenzies. Her daughter, a budding author and cinematographer, helps her come up with character names. For fun, Posy enjoys crafting, hiking, and singing spontaneously about the mundane, just to make regular life more interesting.

Social Media Links:
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Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6550149.Posy_Roberts

Giveaway:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Direct link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/81aa7894955/