Guest Post: A. L. Boyd

Today I have a guest post from fellow House of Manlove writer A.L. Boyd, with a new release!

Just in time for the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta! Soaring Hearts is a fictional story that takes place at one of the world’s largest ballooning events.

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Blurb:

Will hearts soar when pigs fly?

Alex’s job working for his family-owned radio station once took him all over the city reporting on major events—until the accident. His scars, both physical and emotional, cause him to withdraw into a self-imposed, semi-reclusive lifestyle. When his dad requests that he go to the world’s largest hot air balloon festival, he has to find the courage to break his isolation. Now he needs to find the courage to trust and love again.

Jeff had already been planning a move to Albuquerque when he lost his home, parents, and dog to a wildfire in California. To begin his new life, he agrees to help his sister and brother-in-law with their balloon at the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta. Now he’s seen pigs fly and bees kissing, but will he find the love he’s been searching for?

Excerpt:

Chapter 3

People blanketed the field, waiting to see the mass ascension. The green of the grass became invisible under the sea of blue, brown, and red patches of cloth as the crowds wandered about.

Safely off the field, Jeff sat in one of the chairs, pouring the coffee into his cup. People were scurrying around the billowing fabric like ants. The colors of their jackets were muted by the vibrant yellows, oranges, and reds seen on so many of the balloons. The phewooo sound of the propane burners drowned out the sounds of thousands of people talking, as the giant pillows of nylon in every imaginable color and pattern inflated.

From behind him a voice said, “Pretty, isn’t it? I love this time of year when all the balloons show up.”

Startled, he jumped at the unexpected disturbance, nearly spilling his coffee down the front of his shirt. He tried hard not to growl at the intrusion. He didn’t want to make enemies on his first full day in town.

“Yeah, it’s nice,” Jeff replied. He kept his eyes on the kaleidoscope of colors inflating in front of him.

“I’m Alex Mullen, I work for one of the local radio stations in town. During the Fiesta, we play interviews from participants and visitors to the event. Do you mind if I ask you a few questions?”

Jeff didn’t turn to watch the man standing behind him, but the soft tenor of the voice intrigued him, so he answered.

“Hi, Alex. Have a seat, and watch the display with me.” He gestured to the extra chair next to him, and the thin young man stepped into his view, swinging a backpack off his back. Before he sat down, he pulled out a few items. Jeff had only gotten a glimpse of the man’s handsome face and smooth jaw line before his long blond hair fell forward, when his rainbow-gloved hands set a recording device on the small table and set up a wireless microphone.

That quick glance was all it took to spark Jeff’s interest. “I’m Jeff. This is my first year here with my sister and brother-in-law’s balloon.” He scanned the sky to see if he could spot Danny’s balloon, then he pointed to one with a yellow and green geometric design. “That’s it right there.”

Alex looked up where Jeff was pointing. “Oh, isn’t that one of the Gibson brothers’ balloons?”

“Yep. How did you know?”

“I’ve interviewed most of the family over the years.”

“Yeah, you probably would have met some of them, considering someone from the family comes every year. Danny made sure to tell me all about that this morning.”

As he set up his equipment, Alex asked, “Do you mind if I use your last name in the interview?”

“No, I don’t mind, but I guess that means I’ll have to tell you, huh?” He chuckled. “One of these days I’ll get introductions right.” He reached out his hand as if to shake it. “Hi, Alex. I’m Jeff Bowen. It’s nice to meet you.”

He cocked his head a little toward Jeff, and took his hand. “Nice to meet you, too, Jeff.”

Jeff held on to Alex’s hand a moment longer and examined the gloves. “Nice gloves. Are they handmade?”

Alex stared up at him for an instant before his cheeks reddened, and he stammered as he pulled his hand away. “T-thanks. My sister made them.”

Jeff wanted to see more of those beautiful blue eyes, but Alex kept his gaze lowered and continued on as if he hadn’t felt the same spark that had caused Jeff’s hand to tingle.

When Alex sat down, he pulled out a small note pad and pen. “Usually I like to ask a few questions before I start the recording, to get people relaxed about the interview process. Once I turn it on, I may ask some of the same questions you already answered. Is that okay with you?”

Jeff flashed him a smile. “That’s fine with me. I don’t mind at all.”

Alex responded with a relaxed and beautiful smile. Jeff shivered, but not from the cold this time. It had been a while since he’d been with anyone, and Alex’s smile made him think lusty thoughts that he needed to keep under wraps for now.

“When you introduced yourself, you said this was your first visit here?” Alex fidgeted with his note pad and pen.

“Yes, I came with my sister and her husband. You saw them up there.” He gestured skyward. “They were one of the first to go up. Usually they go up earlier when the conditions are right.”

“So they’re part of the Dawn Patrol?” Alex asked excitedly. “That’s wonderful. Few people can meet the requirements for Dawn Patrol. I wasn’t aware that anyone in the Gibson family met the qualifications.”

“Yes. Danny’s excited; this is the first year he’s qualified. He has a lot of experience. I know he’s a second or third generation pilot.”

“That’s great. Is this your sister’s first time at the event also?”

“No. My sister’s come with him the last couple of years since they got married. And this year, they finally dragged me along as well.” He chuckled a little at that.

 

Where to find Soaring Hearts:

Currently Available at:

Amazon

Smashwords

AUTHOR BIO

A cartographer by day, A. L. Boyd spends most of her free time with her horses, gardening, or reading. She never intended to be a writer, but stories like this one sometimes just pop into her head. The writing came about as a way to get the stories out.

CONTACT & MEDIA INFO:

Email: alboyd99@gmail.com

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/16631303-a-l

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/A.L.BOYD99

 

Also by the Author

Kickass Anthology – Authors donate stories to raise funds for Eric Arvin’s medical recovery – come be part of the effort! Even a kickass hero needs a hand from a secondary character, and Eric needs that extra power boost right now. This anthology is a volunteer effort organized by Eric’s fans and fellow writers in order to raise funds and help cover the cost of his high-tech recovery. His wicked sense of humor is intact, but his body needs a bit of assistance. These stories are meant to inspire. They’re a warm hug, a wave from afar, a wink and a nod. Discover new authors and graphic artists as you, too, get revved up to slay whatever ails you!

Crest Ridge

The Dawn of Darkness

 

Review: The Last Yeti

Book: The Last Yeti

Author: Tully Vincent

Publisher: Goodreads MMRomance group (as part of the 2015 “Don’t Read in the Closet” event)

Genre: Paranormal mmromance

Rating: 4.0 out of 5 stars

Tully’s a newcomer to writing mmromance, and I know her, but anyone who knows me is aware that when I review, I don’t go easy on someone just because I know them or chat with them online.

That being said, I really enjoyed this book. Tully did a fabulous job setting up the mythos of the yeti–and I never saw myself reading, much less enjoying a book about a yeti to begin with! Jrake was a very well done character with all the tragedy and loneliness of being the last of his kind. I like that the human character, Rohn, has a disability in the form of an amputated arm. Both the characters had anger at the world for their predicaments. I do love messed up characters.

The sex was hot, and I liked the development of the relationship between the two. I also liked Tully’s use of the setting in Alaska, and how it shapes both men. This isn’t a long novel, but the story felt complete to me. I understand she’s working on more between these two, which should be interesting.

New Release by Heloise West

Hey, just letting everyone know that a friend of mine has a release coming out next week!  Details are below. Heloise is an awesome writer, and I love everything that she does.

The release date of Send Lawyers, Guns, Roses is April 19, 2016. This is not a standalone novel, but the sequel to Hitting Black Ice (Loose Id December, 2014). It’s part of the Heart and Haven series: https://velvetpanic2.wordpress.com/heart-and-haven-series/

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Blurb:

 

When Hunter and Alex (formally Shawn) are given the vacation of a lifetime, it’s a chance for them to pay attention to romance and get out of the path of danger. The tiny Caribbean island of Saba is gorgeous, the first to have marriage equality, and the Sabans are the nicest people on earth.

There’s lots of rum poolside for relaxing and a room with a mirror on the ceiling for passion. Hot karaoke nights, cold beer, and new friends.

Their new friends Orfeo and Max, and Max’s sister Talisha, share a troubling secret. Alex and Hunter want to help. As a hurricane bears down on them, a dead body surfaces, and a purple backpack loaded with stolen jewels leads a pair of dangerous men to the island.

Alex would rather poke his own eyes out with a pointy stick than call on his old enemy Nick Truman for help; he’d also do anything to keep Hunter out of danger. But even his nemesis can’t reach them now.

Once again, they only have each other to depend on as their paradise is about to become hell on earth.

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Hitting Black Ice:

ER physician’s assistant Hunter guards his heart carefully, but that doesn’t stop him from falling for Shawn, the front desk clerk.  He keeps his distance from relationships for a reason, but just can’t help himself when it comes to Shawn.

Shawn is on the run from the law and love to protect himself and anyone else involved. One man is dead because of him, and his life now is simple and easily thrown into a bag at any hint of danger. Until he meets Hunter, and he no longer wants to run.

Forced into a hostage situation, buried passion explodes in the aftermath, and sex in the supply closet brings their hearts back to life. Tentatively, step by step, they begin to explore a relationship together until the past catches up with Shawn.

FBI agent Nick Truman has finally found his man, but when Shawn escapes, he focuses his attention on Hunter. Shawn returns, even though it means sacrificing himself to save Hunter from the man who framed him for murder.

Buy Links:

http://www.loose-id.com/hitting-black-ice.html

http://www.amazon.com/Hitting-Black-Ice-Heloise-West-ebook/dp/B00QJEJ7VO/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-hittingblackice-1689874-340.html

 

About Heloise West:

Heloise West, when not hunched over the keyboard plotting love and mayhem, dreams about moving to a villa in Tuscany. She loves history, mysteries, and romance of all flavors. She travels and gardens with her partner of 10 years, and their home overflows with books, cats, art, and red wine.

Where to find Heloise:

Blogs: https://velvetpanic2.wordpress.com/

Website: http://heloisewest.wix.com/heloisewest

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/heloise.west.1

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/heloisewest/

Email: heloise_67@hotmail.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/velvetpanic

Tumblr: http://heloisewest.tumblr.com/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8188216.Heloise_West

 

A sense of accomplishment

I just wanted to announce that I just finished the initial draft of my m/m weretiger romance, Forest of Thorns and Claws. I’m working on the “Afterword” right now, but the story itself is about 62,000 words. Next comes the editing, and then I’ll be sending it off to the publisher.

Phew!  It always feels good to finish a book!

In other news, I’ve just about hit the midway point on the 2nd Oddities book, and I should be getting line edits soon for the first book. I’m hoping to fast track the weretiger book through production, but otherwise I won’t have anything big out until September.

I’m also considering doing a steampunk novella, as I start to clear my plate a bit. Of course I’m also still working on the YA paranormal mmromance.

Spring is always a creative time for me, and I like to make use of the amped up energy. Spring is also some of the nicest weather for Arizona, with wildflowers on the desert hills, festivals happening every weekend, and people generally enjoying the outdoors. I went to a Japanese festival a couple weekends ago, and then to the Renaissance Festival last weekend for my birthday. Huzzah! (Yes, that’s where my featured photo came from–I took the shot. I was impressed that they have female squires riding in the joust now. Go women!)

Monthly WIP Report

Every month I like to keep people informed about what projects I’m working on, and where they are. February wasn’t a great month–most of the month, my partner was sick, and that required a lot of my time and attention. And then I got sick. On top of that, my other writing engagements (nonfiction) were extremely busy on a project that was due last week. I’m hoping March is a little smoother.

On the good side, I approved the final cover for the first Oddities book, Murder First Seen!! The cover is by Kanaxa, who also did the covers for books like Strain and Cold Fusion. She’s an amazing artist, and I’m so freaking excited to be working with her. I think we’re still set for a September release of the book.

So meanwhile in new words…

Current WIPS:

1. Forest of Thorns and Claws (weretiger M/M), now at 59,230 words. I’ve just started the last chapter, and the final should be around 63,000 words, quite a bit over my original estimate. I’m also going to be adding an afterword, because I have some things to say about nature preservation and the state of the world’s rainforests.

2. Fraud Twice Felt (The Oddities Book 2, paranormal M/M suspense), moving along well, and now at 39,221 words, estimated to be about 90k. Due to publisher by October 1.

3. Fae Fortunes (YA M/M paranormal), currently at 37,666, estimated 65k.

4. Deena and the Professor (Trudy Judd, BDSM romance), Five out of 10 parts written, first 4 parts published, currently at 3576 words on Part 6 (estimated to be 8k).

5. Fantasy novel currently at 78,940 words, total will be 110k.

Guest Post: Dean Pace Frech New Release

Today I have a guest post from mmromance writer Dean Pace Frech, one of the wonderful members of the House of Manlove writing critique group that I participate with. I am happy to announce that the Second Edition of A Place to Call Their Own is available from JMS Books, LLC and other online retailers.

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Blurb

Frank Greerson and Gregory Young have been discharged from the Army and are headed to their childhood homes. They both defied their parents in 1861 when they joined the Army. After battling southern rebels and preserving the Union of the United States of America, the two men set out to battle the Kansas Prairie and build a life together. Once they find their claim, they encounter common obstacles to life on the Kansas Prairie in 1866:  Native Americans, tornadoes, wild animals, and weather.

When a prairie fire destroys their crops and takes their neighbor’s lives, Frank and Gregory are instructed to find their young son’s aunt. Faced with leaving a destroyed claim, the railroad coming through their land, and dwindling funds, Frank and Gregory must decide whether to leave the place they have worked hard to make their own or fulfill their friends’ dying wishes.

Sales Links:

JMS Books Amazon US

Amazon UK

Barnes and Noble

All Romance Ebooks

Omnilit.com

Goodreads

Excerpt:

You two together, or…” Mr. McAvoy asked with a puzzled look on his face.

Mrs. McAvoy raised an eyebrow, also curious about the situation.

Gregory gave Frank a nervous and mischievous look and answered, “Ah, yes, sir. We planned to each get a claim and build one house for now, help each other out.”

The answer seemed to satisfy both Mr. and Mrs. McAvoy. “That sounds like a good idea. It’d be nice to have a few neighbors around to help with things once in a while. And what I wouldn’t give to have had just one other man to help me with some of the house building and stable. You stay around here, and you’ll need a stable. Wolves and coyotes will get your livestock if you don’t.”

“How did you protect yourself before? This stuff doesn’t get built in a day.” Gregory asked.

“It takes ’em a while to figure out you’re here. And of course, it’s worse in the winter than this time of year. They haven’t been quite so bad the last few weeks, have they?” he directed to his wife.

“No, they calmed down. Hopefully they’ve been preying on the deer that are eating my potato plants.” answered Mrs. McAvoy. “You two want to stay for supper? I’ve got a big pot of rabbit stew on the stove.”

“It’ll be good, I promise. She’s done great cooking whatever I can find for us,” Mr. McAvoy added.

Gregory ignored the invitation. “How’s the hunting around here? You do good during the winter months?”

“Yeah, in the fall it’s the best—the animals are all fat and sassy from the summer. You can tell the bucks from the does, and you don’t have to worry about orphaning a young deer like you do now. There are plenty of rabbits and prairie chickens right now. You can find squirrels…”

“And the meadowlarks do fine, too, in a pinch,” piped in Mrs. McAvoy. “Now, what about supper?”

“We appreciate the offer, ma’am,” Frank spoke up. “But we’re just trying to find us our claims and be done with traveling. We’ve been traveling nearly six weeks now. It has been that long since we had a decent home-cooked meal, but we need to keep moving on today.”

They both remembered the last time they joined anyone for dinner. The McAvoys seemed harmless, but Frank and Gregory were both a bit shy about joining anyone else at this point.

“Yeah, we’re getting close to where we want to settle,” Gregory added. “We appreciate the offer and all, but we just want to keep moving.”

Mrs. McAvoy smiled, turned, and ran into the house with her load of laundry. Neither Frank nor Gregory knew if she was hurt because they declined the supper invitation or just needed to get back to her household chores.

“We understand that. Took us nearly six months to get here from New York, where we come from. We stayed with some relatives along the way, but the missus did appreciate it when we finally stopped here.”

“Well, we appreciate your hospitality and all your help. We should probably get going,” Frank said, glancing at Gregory.

“If you happen to end up around here, don’t be strangers. Just let us know where you’re at,” Mr. McAvoy replied.

“It’s a deal, sir,” Frank said and extended his hand.

Mr. McAvoy walked over and took it. After they were done, McAvoy stepped away from the wagon.

Gregory slapped the reins and yelled “giddyap,” and the horses sprang forward.

A frantic Mrs. McAvoy yelled from inside the house, “Wait!”

Frank grabbed Gregory’s arm to stop him. Gregory pulled back on the reins.

Mrs. McAvoy came out of the cabin with a small basket covered with flour sack cloth.

“This here isn’t much, but maybe it will allow you to rest once you stop for the night. I put two crocks of my stew in there and part of the bread I baked for our supper tonight. I don’t know why I did it, but something told me to make extra bread today.”

“We’re mighty obliged, ma’am. This will help. Now we don’t have to worry about hunting anything for our dinner. We’ll just warm this by the fire and be ready to go,” Gregory spoke up.

“Yes, ma’am. We are getting a bit worn out by this trip,” Frank said. He grinned at Gregory and said, “Hopefully, we’ll be finding our home soon.”

Both men tipped their hats once more, and Gregory got the horses going again.

Dove and Daisy lumbered along for the rest of the afternoon and into the early evening. Before they realized it, the wagon climbed a gentle, gradual grade. The early evening sun blinded them as they reached the crest of the ridge. At the top, Frank looked over his shoulder where the wagon had just been. There he saw the trail left by the wagon and horses in the prairie grass. To the west, a line of trees indicated a creek, river, or some sort of waterway. The sun drenched the entire landscape in its golden hue. He looked at Gregory, and they both knew this was their new home. They had arrived on the homestead.

“Welcome home, Frankie!” Gregory yelled at the top of his lungs.

Giveaway:

In celebration of the release of A Place to Call Their Own, I am giving away a copy of my novel, Disappear With Me.

Rafflecopter code:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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New bw headshot

About Dean Pace-Frech

With inspiration from historical tourism sites, the love of reading, and a desire to write a novel, Dean started crafting his debut novel, A Place to Call Their Own, in 2008. After four years of writing and polishing the manuscript, it was accepted and originally published 2013. His second novel, Disappear With Me, set in Edwardian England was published later that same year. Both novels were re-released in May 2015.

Dean lives in Kansas City, Missouri with his husband, Thomas (legally as of February 14, 2015), and our two cats. They are involved in their church and enjoy watching movies, outdoor activities in the warmer weather and spending time together with friends and family. In addition to writing, Dean’s hobbies include reading and patio gardening.

Dean is currently working a standalone title, Need Your Love, set in 1966, and The Higher Law, a continuation of the story of Frank and Gregory’s family set in the 1930s.

Connect with Dean Pace-Frech

Email deanfrech@aol.com

Blog:  Dean’s Web Site

Facebook:  Dean Pace-Frech, Author page or send a friend request Dean Pace-Frech.

Twitter: @deanpacefrech

Google+: +deanpacefrech

Goodreads: Dean Pace-Frech

Pinterest:  Dean Pace-Frech

 

Review: Land of Night (Scarlet and the White Wolf 3)

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Title: Land of Night

Series: Scarlet and the White Wolf (3)

Author: Kirby Crow

Publisher:Torquere

Genre: M/M Fantasy

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars!!

I really loved how this series turned out, and this was a completely satisfying conclusion. I don’t give out five stars lightly, but this book hit all the great plot and world building elements of fantasy, as well as the gay romance points. Bravo!!

There were also a few unexpected twists in this last book that readers of fantasy writers like Anne McCaffery and Ursula LeGuin would appreciate. I love how Crow deals with the different cultures in the book, and how they all regard each other, how legends and history can combine into a rich tapestry. The emotions ran high in this book as well, pulling the reader to find out what happened next. It’s a bit of a roller coaster ride.

There are lies between Scarlet and Liall which threaten to tear them apart, but there is also a steadfast love holding them together. The push and pull between them is what I think really works in this book. Definitely read the series in order.