Posts Tagged With: Brigham Vaughn

Book Review: The Ghosts Between Us by Brigham Vaughn

Reviewed by Susan65

Title: The Ghosts Between Us
Author: Brigham Vaughn
Series: The West Hills #1
Heroes: Christopher & Elliot
Genre: M/M Contemporary
Length: 372 pages
Publisher: Two Peninsulas Press
Release Date: March 1, 2019
Available at: Amazon
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads

Blurb: Dr. Christopher Allen knows how to deal with death. He’s a psychiatrist who works with hospice patients and their families, helping them cope with grief and letting go. But Chris’s job doesn’t prepare him for the sudden death of his devil-may-care brother Cal.

At Cal’s funeral, Chris is completely thrown when he meets Elliot Rawlings, an artist Cal has been dating. Chris is hurt to discover that the brother he knew as straight was actually bisexual. Elliot is angry and resentful of having been kept hidden from Cal’s family.

After the funeral, a night of drinking at the bar with Cal’s friends leads to Chris and Elliot falling into bed together. The next morning, they’re overwhelmed by guilt and grief and agree to never speak of it again.

But Cal’s apartment needs to be packed up and Elliot reluctantly agrees to help Chris, as well as answer some questions about Cal’s life and their relationship. Despite their guilt and initial dislike for one another, they sort through the pieces of Cal’s life and begin to fall for each other.

Despite his best efforts to fix things, Chris’s family seems to be crumbling around him and he begins to question who he is and what his role with them is. As his feelings for Elliot grow, Chris must decide if they’re worth further damaging his fragile relationships with his friends and family.

Elliot’s rough upbringing has left him distrustful of getting close to anyone, much less another man who isn’t willing to acknowledge him in public. The odds seem stacked against Chris and Elliot, but if they can overcome them, they may be able to lay Cal’s ghost to rest, along with their own demons.

Reader Advisory: This story deals with themes related to alcoholism, death (of secondary characters), and past abuse/neglect.
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Categories: 4.5 Star Ratings, Book Review, LGBT, Published in 2019, Susan65's Reviews | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Honorary Bloggers K. Evan Coles & Brigham Vaughn: Food Talk + Excerpt & Giveaway!

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Food Talk

by K. Evan Coles & Brigham Vaughn

As we discussed topics for this this blog post, the conversation got derailed (as it often does) by talk of food. First K. Evan mentioned that she was making overnight oats. This segued into Brigham’s dinner plans of turkey burgers with curried mayo and garam masala roasted potato wedges. From there it went into a discussion about what Brigham should do with a bunch of milk that needed to be used up before it went bad. Homemade ricotta cheese and pumpkin rice pudding were discussed and recipes researched. We debated the merits of bubble tea, tapioca pudding, and Champorado, a Filipino rice porridge made with cocoa powder and coconut milk.

We have conversations like this often, both for IRL purposes and for character writing. In the end, we realized we might as well write a blog post about food, one of our mutual loves. After all, clearly our minds were on the topic, so why not focus on something that we clearly spend a lot of time talking about.

K. Evan calls herself a “super food fan” and Brigham is a self-described foodie. Both of us enjoy both cooking and baking as well as eating, and especially sharing the food we make with others. Our newsletter even has a section for recipe sharing. We wholeheartedly enjoy others doing the cooking, too, especially foods we’re not easily able to make ourselves. To us, food is just all sorts of fun.

We’ve had to research a different genre of recipes for “The Speakeasy” books, namely cocktails and mocktails. The characters in the books frequent an uptown speakeasy in Manhattan called Under, and the bar becomes a sanctuary of sorts for a growing circle of friends to connect and share their experiences. Under serves as both hang out and haven for the characters, and the drinks served there and throughout the plots are as varied as their personalities.

Some of our characters want something fabulous with four liquor and a fancy garnish, like the Lita Grey Cocktail. Others crave a more straightforward kind of drink, like the Cuba Libre or a great Scotch served neat. We also write characters who abstain from alcohol and some who drink sparingly to avoid medication interactions. For them we’ve become acquainted with lots of gorgeous mocktails and infused waters, many of which have migrated into our personal lives (neither of us finds writing while imbibing actual alcoholic cocktails to be particularly productive).

To be sure, our books contain references to food, too. Our characters cook with and for each other, and some do a little more teaching if they find their partner in crime is best known for burning water. The characters definitely dine, too, and enjoy sharing meals in groups. Some of the characters are even willing to set their differences with friends and family aside—at least for a little while—when it comes time to cozy up to the table for some good food and conversation.

Food is so often a universal language that brings people together and helps them connect. The connections in our books might occur over a boisterous dinner featuring a big group eating homemade Guinness beef stew, but they might also happen in a more intimate setting, like an impromptu picnic of cookies and beer for two on someone’s half made bed.

We can go a little overboard with the descriptions, which we suspect occurs if we’ve been writing while hungry. As our beta readers go through a book, they often make suggestions to trim a section that involves food or remove some of the details of a meal the characters are eating. We writers then typically debate the comments at length before we cut anything out. Because food.

We know there are readers out there who are much less interested in every last detail of the food and drinks the characters enjoy, so we want to keep it balanced. Setting the scene is important, but we also want the scenes to help develop the characters and move the plot forward. In the end, we want to tell a really great story, and we do our best to determine how many words we spend on everything in it.

Incidentally, we have plans for a book about a chef in the near future. Our tendencies to go cheerfully overboard with the food talk may come in handy then!

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Categories: Book Promo, Excerpts, Giveaways, Honorary Blogger Post | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

More Giveaway Winners!

We’ve got THREE giveaways to announce winners for!

Equals

So, the winner of an eBook of winner’s choice from Brigham Vaughn’s backlist is Continue reading

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Honorary Blogger Brigham Vaughn: Excerpt & Giveaway!

An Excerpt from Equals

by Brigham Vaughn

“Thanks again for all of your help,” Russ said with a sigh. “I seriously can’t thank you enough.”

Stephen looked away from the TV and shook his head, glancing at Russ with a small smile. “It’s the least I could do. I feel responsible for what happened.”

Russ smiled back, Stephen’s earnestness relaxing him. “Let’s call it even then, I guess. Or we could be up all night with this.”

Stephen quirked an eyebrow up at him, eyes crinkling at the corners with amusement. Fuck, what a turn on. Why older men were such an attraction for him, he’d never be sure, but he’d realized it in college and had had a brief fling with a professor after the semester was over. It wasn’t the forbidden aspect of it—they’d both waited until after Russ was no longer his student—but he liked the age difference.

A man with a fit body, handsome face, graying hair, and a killer smile always got him going. Hell, his head and ankle still ached and he was starting to get hard. And was Stephen flirting? God, Russ hoped so. Couldn’t hurt to flirt back. “Well, being up all night isn’t always a bad thing.”

Stephen’s lips turned up at the corners in amusement. “You don’t think so?”

Russ shrugged. “It depends on the reason, doesn’t it?”

“Yes, I suppose it does,” Stephen murmured. He shifted to face Russ. “I’m afraid all of the best reasons are off the table.”

“Too bad.” Russ stared at Stephen’s lips and licked his own.

“Is it? Well, I suppose you did sleep all day, you’re probably not tired. Still, there’s work in the morning, and you’ll need rest to heal.”

Russ sighed, knowing Stephen was right, but wondering if the conversation had been dancing around the subject he’d been wondering about for a while now. He didn’t think he imagined the attraction between him and Stephen. Now the question was if they were going to do something about it or ignore it.

“Yes, I suppose so.”

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About Equals

EqualsToo busy to date while he worked to put himself through school, Russell Bishop’s dedication finally pays off; he has a great job with Vantage Marketing. Stephen Parker, CFO of the marketing firm, has resigned himself to a life without a partner. For six months, they wanted each other but it isn’t until Russ slips on spilled coffee, and Stephen rushes to his rescue that they discover their attraction is mutual. However, the twenty year age gap between them proves difficult when they begin dating. Fiercely independent, Russ isn’t sure he’s ready for long-term commitment. Scarred from a previous relationship, Stephen is afraid history is repeating itself. Is there any way for them to meet in the middle and become equals?

Available at: Amazon & All Romance eBook

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Follow the Tour

7/11/2014        Prism Book Alliance

7/12/2014        Love Bytes Reviews

7/14/2014        The Novel Approach

7/16/2014        GGR Review

7/19/2014        The Blogger Girls – hey, that’s us!

7/21/2014        Kimi Chan Experience

7/23/2014        The Hat Party

7/25/2014        Rainbow Gold Reviews

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About Brigham Vaughn

Brigham_HeadshotBrigham Vaughn has always been a voracious reader with her own stories to tell. After many years of abandoned plots, something finally clicked. Now she’s eating, sleeping, and breathing writing and is excited to have finally figured out what she wants to be when she grows up. In the little time that isn’t spent writing or reading, she loves cooking, yoga, photography, and remodeling her ninety-year-old home. Brigham lives in Michigan with her four cats and an amazing husband who has always been her biggest champion.

 

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In this blog tour giveaway, you’ll have TWO chances to win! One commenter at each stop in this tour will win their choice of a backlist title from Brigham Vaughn. Each stop’s winner will be decided by that blog. This part of the giveaway starts now and ends on Friday, July 25, 2014 at 11:59 p.m.

In addition one commenter in all of the tour stops will win a $10 Giftcard from Amazon. Grand Prize giveaway ends July 30, 2014 at 11:59pm. Winner will be drawn by random drawing among all entrants on July 31st.  Must be 18 or older to enter. Void where prohibited.

So what are you waiting for? Comment on this post and you’ll be entered to win!

Good luck!

Categories: Book Promo, Excerpts, Giveaways, LGBT, Published in 2014 | Tags: , , | 10 Comments