Flame and Ash by Morgan Brice: Exclusive Excerpt & Giveaway!

Blogger_Exclusive Excerpt

Exclusive Excerpt from Flame and Ash

by Morgan Brice

After all, Evan thought, what value do I bring to the situation? Six months of training had improved his skills, taught him a few more rote spells, and helped him understand more about the kinds of things that went bump in the night. Despite it all, Evan knew he had a long way to go before he could match Seth’s abilities, and he worried that he could be the weak link that cost Seth his life.

The trip from Pittsburgh to Boone would take most of the day, and while Evan offered to take a turn behind the wheel, he knew that Seth preferred to drive. When he wasn’t chasing down loose ends about the Boone situation on his computer, Evan planned to doze in the passenger seat, but dark dreams woke him more than once, earning him worried glances from Seth.

“Hey.” Seth’s voice roused Evan from his thoughts. “Whatever you’re thinking—let me in. Don’t keep it to yourself.”

“I just don’t want to let you down,” Evan admitted.

“You won’t.”

“You don’t know that.”

“I know that you’ve saved my ass more than once,” Seth replied. “And that was before we spent the last three months doing more training.” He reached out to take Evan’s hand. “I trust you. I believe in you. There’s no one I’d rather have beside me in a fight. And I love you.”

Evan’s throat tightened. “I love you, too. And I want to be here, doing this, with you. It’s just…I’m not really the action hero type.”

Seth chuckled. “And I am?”

“You were in the army. You’re a soldier. So, yeah.”

Seth sighed. “I went into the army to get away from a bad breakup. Not exactly the most noble reason. I did okay, I guess. I was lucky enough to come home. But I knew I wasn’t going to make a career out of it. Some guys, they get in, and they know that’s where they’re supposed to be. It becomes their home and family, like they were born for it.” He shook his head. “It was never that for me.”

“I made okay money, working at the bar.” Evan looked at the road instead of at Seth. “But something was always missing, you know? What I did didn’t really matter. This…” He gestured to mean the two of them, hunting, the search for the witch-disciples. “It makes a difference. Saves lives. Stops a hundred years of killing. It just seems like fate could have picked someone who was better prepared.”

Seth laid his hand on Evan’s thigh, solid and warm. “Hunting doesn’t work like that. You’ve talked to Travis and Brent and Mark. They didn’t train to be a hunter from the time they were kids. They lost people, and it changed them. And from that point on, they learned on the job,” Seth said. “Just like you.”

Evan managed a wan smile. “If this were a TV show, I’d want to skip to the finale, where we ride off into the sunset.”

“I wish we could,” Seth admitted. “But I’m afraid there’s no fast-forward on real life.”

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Book Review: In the Shadows (Social Sinners #2) by T.L. Travis

Reviewed by Susan65

Title: In the Shadows
Author: T.L. Travis
Series: Social Sinners #2
Heroes: Joey Hayes/Ricky “Stoli” Branson
Genre: M/M Contemporary
Length: 202 Pages
Publisher: Encompass Ink
Release Date: 08/17/18
Available at:  Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads

Blurb: For Ricky “Stoli” Branson, the stars were on his side. Social Sinners was headlining their first sold out US tour. Radio stations across the states were playing their songs, and he’d won the heart of the man he loved.

Everything was going great, or so he foolishly believed…

When an accident has them burying one of their own and leaves another fighting for his life, Stoli questions his beliefs. Or lack thereof.

“Have faith,” his mother tells him. But how can you have faith in something that threatens to take away your only reason for breathing?
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Categories: 4.5 Star Ratings, Book Review, LGBT, Published in 2018, Susan65's Reviews | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Author Q&A: Thea McAlistair + Excerpt & Giveaway!

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Please welcome Thea McAlistair to The Blogger Girls!

When did you write your first story and what was the inspiration for it?

My first story that I remember was a fan fiction of a book about fairies at the age of 10 or so. It was a school assignment, but I don’t remember exactly what the assignment was.
My first non-school related piece was something like a YA take on Lord of the Rings around age 14. It didn’t get past a couple pages but I probably put almost as much planning into it as Tolkien himself would have. Sometimes I think I should go back to it, but I’m pretty sure I can’t get my mind wrapped around young YA.

Do you have a writing schedule or do you just write when you can find the time?

Definitely when I find the time. I work full time (45-50 hours a week), so sometimes I have to get creative. I have, however, found that if I have a clear goal or deadline, even one with no consequences like NaNoWriMo, I’m much more likely to sit down and actually work. No Good Men and its sequel Boiling Over are results of NaNoWriMo and Camp NaNoWriMo, respectively

Briefly describe the writing process. Do you create an outline first?  Do you seek out inspirational pictures, videos or music? Do you just let the words flow and then go back and try and make some sense out it?

I start with characters or maybe a brilliant flash of a scene. I piece it out from there: who are these people? How did they end up in this situation? How will they get out of it? That can usually carry me to a couple thousand words and then I need to dip into the well of music or other fiction to bring back the spark. Sometimes it takes longer than I want.

Where did the desire to write LGBT romance come from?

It didn’t start as a particular desire. I consider No Good Men a mystery first, a romance second. But that’s sort of the thing, isn’t it? There isn’t a “reason” for the characters being LGBTQ any more than there’s a “reason” for real LGBTQ people to exist. It’s time we accepted that.

How much research do you do when writing a story and what are the best sources you’ve found for giving an authentic voice to your characters?

I’m very well educated in history, so I know some basics. If I need a particular fact, Google is very much my friend. And I’m fortunate that there are still some films from the period I write in, so I can listen to the cadence and word choice of characters my characters were supposed to have related to if they were real people. 

What’s harder, naming your characters, creating the title for your book or the cover design process?

The book title was hardest, by far. Trying to capture 65,000 words in just one to five? Insanity. I was very fortunate to work with Raevyn and Natasha at NineStar Press on my cover, and we came up with something really great pretty quickly. Character names have never been hard for me. Because I’m writing historic fiction, I can pull up baby name lists for the appropriate era and ta-da I have 100 names to choose from. 

How do you answer the question “Oh, you’re an author…what do you write?”

I say “historical mysteries.” If pressed further I’ll open that out to “LGBTQ noir-style historic mysteries set in the 1930s.” I get a lot of incredulous stares and polite nodding. Niche genres whooo!

What does your family think of your writing?

Don’t know, they haven’t read it yet haha!

Tell us about your current work in process and what you’ve got planned for the future.

Book 2, Boiling Over, is with NineStar going through the publishing process. I have a draft 0 of Book 3 going and I’ve got ideas for four or five more after that. I can’t let my boys go, it seems.

I dabble in fantasy from time to time, but I haven’t gotten very far with them. Not sure what the issue is, but it is an entirely different process than the mysteries. I guess it’s because with a historical book, you know that there are facts you can look up, and with a mystery, you always know where your endgame is. With a fantasy, literally all bets are off.

Do you have any advice for all the aspiring writers out there?

Make friends with other writers. I can’t tell you how many times I wanted to give up only to have my writer friends buoy me back up. And their help is invaluable for working through issues with the story. Plus they are always open to commiserating with you.

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Categories: Author Q&A, Book Promo, Excerpts, Giveaways, LGBT | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

Book Review: Behind the Lights (Social Sinners #1) by T.L. Travis

Reviewed by Susan65

Title: Behind the Lights
Author: .T.L Travis
Series: Social Sinners #1
Heroes: Joey Hayes/Ricky “Stoli” Branson
Genre: M/M Contemporary
Length: 172 Pages
Publisher: Encompass Ink
Release Date: June 9, 2018
Available at: Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads

Blurb: Joey Hayes and his best friend Ricky Branson have been together through the good times, as well as the bad. Attending their first concert as teens set the path for their futures in motion. Shortly after, the pair joined band class where they meet Ethan and Mick and the foursome formed the metal band, Social Sinners.

Things were going according to plan until Lucas Shane entered their lives, disrupting the flow and testing the strength of their friendship.

When Joey spirals down a dark path after catching his cheating boyfriend, this tasked the other three band members with making a difficult decision that could end his career as their lead singer.
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Categories: 4 Star Ratings, Book Review, LGBT, Published in 2018, Susan65's Reviews | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Honorary Blogger Rhys Ford: Ivo, 18 • Part Two + Giveaway!

Welcome to the 415 Ink Hellion Tour! My name’s Rhys Ford and thank you for stopping by! First off, thank you to all the blogs who participated in this tour and also, a huge shout out to all of the readers who wanted to hear Ivo’s story. It was great being able to write something about the baby of the 415 Ink crew and well, he probably turned out to be the biggest surprise while writing him. So sit back, grab a bit of Ivo’s past on this tour and I hope you’re ready for his debut on Sept 17th! 

Ivo, 18 • Part Two

by Rhys Ford

The woman was older, maybe in her early thirties, her Hispanic features nearly too strong to be called conventionally pretty but she wore her beauty with an easy confidence, her long black hair pushed back from her face. Fairly tall with long legs, her powerful stride carried her across the cement floor and she came to a stop in front of Ivo, raking a controlled gaze over him.

“You seem kind of young,” she said in a husky contralto. “Are you even old enough to drink?”

“You seem like a cop,” Ivo responded, keeping a smile to himself when her eyes narrowed. “And yeah, I’m licensed to tattoo and Bear would sooner cut off his own fingers then let someone who didn’t know what they were doing ink someone’s skin in his shop. As far as booze goes, less you know, the better. I can promise you I’m sober while I’m operating a tattoo machine.”

She regarded him with another cool look then nodded curtly. “Okay, fair enough. So long as you can operate that thing legally, I guess I can’t complain.”

“Actually, complain now because complaining after I put something permanent on your skin is sure as shit not going to do you any good,” he replied, this time giving in to his grin. “Come on over, have a seat and tell me what you want.”

She settled into the chair easily, looping her legs over the footrest. After rolling up her long sleeved shirt, she dug an old watch out of the pocket of her jeans, holding it up for Ivo to see. “I want a rainbow heart on my wrist but it’s got to be small enough to covered by the watch. Can you do that?”

The watch was ancient, an analog piece made of aged metal with a black dial.  Its hands were long, striped with that odd luminescent paint watchmakers used to make the hands glow in the dark. It seemed to keep good time and when Ivo took it from her, he saw an inscription etched onto the back plate.

“To my dearest George from your wife, Adelaine.” He did some mental calculations on the date. “Your parents?”

“Grandparents. She gave it to him for one of their anniversaries. My brother inherited it when they died.” Her eyes glistened, then were hidden behind her long lashes. When she opened them again, any shimmer he might have seen was gone. “My parents kicked him out when they found out he told them he was gay. He told me to hold onto it. That he’d come back for it.”

“That’s fucked up.” Ivo frowned, pulling up his rolling stool with a hook of his boot into its base. “How long ago was this? You haven’t heard from him since then?”

“Twenty years ago.” Her full mouth lifted into a sardonic quirk when he looked up from examining the watch. “He was a lot older than me. I was seven. He was fifteen. I just made detective and I want something… I want to carry something of his with me. I want to wear that watch but one day, he’s going to come back for it so I’m going to need something … about him to have on me for when he does.”

The watch was large but as tattoos went, he would be able to fit maybe a quarter-sized heart beneath it. Glancing at the flash she’d chosen, Ivo knew he could do better than the plain, striped bands of primary hues. Putting the watch over her wrist, he pulled out one of his Sharpies and plucked its cap off with his teeth then drew a dotted line over where the beveled face would rest on her arm.

Something Bear said constantly dug itself out of the back of his brain, growing teeth and chewing on Ivo’s thoughts. Doesn’t matter how big a piece of ink is or what it’s about, kid, his brother would mutter at him as he inked yet another small daisy chain on a young woman’s ankle, every piece of ink means something to that person and they deserve your respect for getting it.

He got that now. Staring into the cop’s strong face, the pain of losing her brother to time and grasping at fading memories led her to walking into 415 Ink’s doors to look for something permanent to hold onto, so she would forget the young man who’d been forced out of her life. He knew how that felt, knew how that abandonment gouged down deep into a soul. The piece of flash she picked out wasn’t going to be good enough. Not for him. Certainly not for her wandering brother to find his way back to her.

“Okay, here’s the deal,” he said, handing her back her watch. “What you want is okay and I can do that in about twenty minutes and you’ll be happy with it. It’ll look nice. But I’m asking you to trust me here, because even though this thing is small, it means something to you and I want you to have something that’s… special. Let me make it a little bit bigger. It’ll still be tucked under the watch but if I can do just a little bit more, I can blend the colours so it looks like a real rainbow and maybe even emboss it, so it looks like a piece of jewelry on your skin. How does that sound?”

Her smile was bright, nearly as brilliant as the colours he intended to use on her silken gold skin. Nodding, she leaned back and plopped her arm on the rest, wrist side up for him. “That sounds fantastic. I’m in.”

“Awesome. Let me just get my inks ready and we can get started.” He stood up then stopped, holding his hand out to her. “Sorry. Fuck. I didn’t get your name. I’m Ivo and you are going to be my first official tattoo.”

“I’m Dell,” she said, giving him a firm handshake. “And I can’t wait for you to get started.”

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Categories: Book Promo, Excerpts, Giveaways, Honorary Blogger Post, Published in 2019 | Tags: , , , , | 42 Comments

Book Review: Hellion by Rhys Ford

Reviewed by Nikyta

Title: Hellion
Author: Rhys Ford
Series: 415 Ink #3
Heroes: Ruan & Ivo
Genre: M/M Contemporary
Length: 201 pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: September 17, 2019
Available at: Dreamspinner Press & Amazon
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads

Blurb: From the moment SFPD Detective Ruan Nicholls meets Ivo Rogers, he knows the tattoo artist is going to bring chaos to his neat, orderly life. A hellion down to the bone, Ivo is someone Ruan not only doesn’t understand, he’s not even sure he needs to. Everything about Ivo is vibrant, brash, cocky, and arrogant, and Ruan wants no part of him.

Or at least that’s the lie he tells himself when he damps down his desire for the social wild child life tosses into his path.

For Ivo Rogers, life revolves around two things—his family and 415 Ink, the tattoo shop he co-owns with his four brothers. His family might be stitched together by their battle scars from growing up in foster care, but their brotherhood is tight—and strong enough to hold Ivo together during the times when he falls apart.

Now Ivo faces a new challenge when he falls for a cop with an old-school mentality on how a man looks and acts. Ruan is the promise of a life Ivo thought he’d never have, but their clashing perspectives threaten any chance of a relationship. Being the family’s hellion makes it easy to be misunderstood, yet Ivo has faith Ruan will not only embrace who he is but love him as well.  Continue reading

Categories: 4.5 Star Ratings, Book Review, LGBT, Nikyta's Reviews, Published in 2019 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Release Blitz: Fated Hearts by Garrett Leigh + Giveaway!

Fated Hearts by Garrett Leigh

“He’s not a wolf.” 

Devastated by the death of his best friend, Zio is a soldier with one thing on his mind: revenge. Consumed by a conflict that’s raged as long as he’s been alive, he’s had little time or inclination to learn the legends of the shifter world he was raised in. And he certainly doesn’t have time to deal with a shifter of a different kind, even if it’s for the good of the war effort. For the good of his pack. The fact that he’s already crossed paths with the new face in his unit is almost irrelevant. 

Almost.

Do no harm. Give life not death: it’s the oath Devan was reborn to live by, so when he’s sent abroad to embed with a wolf pack as their resident healer, he doesn’t hesitate. In the supernatural world, some bonds are instant–soldiers become brothers, pack become family. But others run deeper and before long, Devan’s at the mercy of instincts he can’t control. Zio’s inner wolf is desperate to be with Devan, while Devan struggles to keep the pack safe. But as the war escalates, and new love is tainted by anguish and pain, the battles within might prove the toughest of them all.

“I won’t let him die.”

Available at: Amazon

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Book Review: Fire in the Heart by Hailey Turner

Reviewed by Susan65

Title: Fire in the Heart
Author: Hailey Turner
Series: Metahuman Files: Classified #3
Heroes: Alexei Dvorkin/Sean Delaney
Genre: M/M Paranormal/Urban Fantasy
Length: 124 Pages
Publisher: Self
Release Date: August 13, 2019
Available at: Amazon
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads

Blurb: 

Surrender to vows.

Staff Sergeant Alexei Dvorkin has come a long way since being turned into a metahuman, and all he wants to do is marry the man he loves. A wedding is easy, but it’s the honeymoon where his past unexpectedly catches up with him.

A future together.

All Agent Sean Delaney wanted was a romantic honeymoon with his new husband. When he and Alexei stumble into a fellow operative’s mission on the luxury gambling resort island Fortuna-sur-mer, they get more than they bargained for in their newly-minted civilian lives.

Destined to burn.

Forced to choose between staying and joining the mission or leaving to stay safe and postpone their honeymoon, Alexei and Sean make the only decision they can—to fight.
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Categories: 4.5 Star Ratings, Book Review, LGBT, Published in 2019, Susan65's Reviews | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Dominated But Not Subdued by JP Sayle: Exclusive Excerpt & Giveaway!

Blogger_Exclusive Excerpt

Exclusive Excerpt from Dominated But Not Subdued

by JP Sayle

With his restraint hanging by a thread, he dug his fingernails into his palms while he followed both men into the office. Stepping away from Adam, Carl barely held on to his control. He walked stiffly to the far chair and sat, the leather creaking under his weight. He kept his hands clenched in his lap and looked at Nathan. 

“How the fuck did my boy get in the club without being a member?” he asked, anger lacing his voice. The wary expression Nathan wore made his eyes narrow. Suspicion wormed its way past his anger, but before Nathan could say a word, Adam interrupted. 

“I applied. There’s a form online. And when I completed it, there was an offer to an introduction night, so I asked for an invite,” he offered in a belligerent tone. 

Carl disregarded the loud sigh Nathan released, too busy snarling at Adam, who’d stuck out his chin in defiance. 

“Right, you two, stop it,” Nathan said, giving Carl a hard glare. “Enough. You need to pull your heads out of your arses and try honesty for a change, the pair of you. This is a BDSM club, not a bloody remake of Fantasy Island. Stop pussyfooting about. Tell each other what you want and move the fuck forward.” He walked to the door. 

“Don’t mess this up,” he said and excited the room.

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Categories: Book Promo, Excerpts, Giveaways, LGBT | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

Book Review: The Arrangement by Alex Jane

Reviewed by Nikyta

Title: The Arrangement
Author: Alex Jane
Series: Homestead Legacy #1
Heroes: Gabriel & Nathaniel
Genre: M/M Historical Paranormal
Length: 194 pages
Publisher: Self Published
Release Date: August 30, 2019
Available at: Amazon
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads

Blurb: 1895. New York.

Gabriel Webster’s pack is in trouble. His father’s failing health and his mother’s untimely death mean that the vultures are circling. It won’t be long before his family’s assets are stripped and his pack disbanded. When an offer of help arrives in the form of a marriage of convenience, he has little choice but to accept.

The arrangement would be the perfect solution, if not for one thing. Gabriel is to marry Nathaniel Hayward, the Alpha who was badly injured in the accident that killed his brother ten years before—and the man Gabriel has been in love with for as long as he can remember.

Trapped in a business arrangement masquerading as a marriage — in a strange, empty house with a damaged husband who barely tolerates him — isn’t what Gabriel expected from life.

But sometimes the last thing we want is the beginning of something more.
And an ending can be the start of something beautiful.

56k words
A standalone story set in the Homestead universe.
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Categories: 4.5 Star Ratings, Book Review, LGBT, Nikyta's Reviews, Published in 2019 | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment