Trading Opinions

I know I haven’t been around in a long while. I’ve been busy and well, tired. Really tired. But stuff has happened since the last time I took to my own personal forum here. To catch you up quickly, here’s a rundown.

BitterBonds_200New sequel to Broken Bonds released. Bitter Bonds was #1 on ARe and top ten gay romance on Amazon. Entangled was #1 free gay rom on Amazon, now still top ten. Got a contract for the revamped Insolent. It’s in edits now. Working on Out of the Pocket (sequel to Scrambling), Fire Storm (next Tales book), and Subs for Lunch (short story in the Souls in Bondage world.) Have five books now in production for audiobooks, Unbreak Me (narrated by Rebecca Roberts) and the first four Tales of the Darkworld (Shifting Winds and Hot Water by female narrator Jenny Urban, Fire Season narrated by Chip Wood, and Ride the Lightning narrated by Sarah Pamero.) In particular, Fire Season sounds soooo exciting! There’s news on the health front (perimenopause still kicking my ass) and the family front – my kid went to stay with her dad after he hadn’t spoken to her in about 5 years and my MIL has been in the hospital since the 4th of July. My hubs’ stepdad with Alzheimer’s has to go into a home now since my MIL can no longer care for him.

What can I say? Life is busy and ever changing.

EROTIC - Reviewed by LASRSo you’re probably wondering about the title of this post. Now that I’ve gotten past the what’s new with me crap, I’ll get to the subject of today’s rant. Well, maybe rant is too a strong word. Definitely, I have something to say and since I’m on my blog, I guess I think you all have the right to hear my opinion! LOL And that’s what I want to talk about…opinions.

Reviews have become a hot button these days. Giving away books in trade for an honest review. Paying for reviews. Not getting reviews unless you practically twist someone’s arm to give you one. Review places springing up everywhere. Review places only reviewing books from authors who pay for ads on their site. Review places only reviewing authors who are friends of theirs. Goodreads snark reviews. Amazon reviews of books not even read. Misinformation in reviews. Authors trading reviews.

Rated 5 cherryThe list of subjects related to reviews is a lot longer than my little list. Books I have with publishers are always sent out to the publisher’s list of sanctioned review sites. A lot of publishers carefully weed out review sites that have trashed their authors’ books and send only to those sites that seem to offer honest, positive reviews of their books. I rarely seek reviews from review sites for books I have with publishers. I don’t want to duplicate efforts. Instead, I focus my promo elsewhere.

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Now, for my self-published books, I have actively sent them out for review and lately, I’ve joined some Facebook groups where people will accept a copy of your book in exchange for an honest review or where authors trade books for review. The trade for honest reviews has been slow, but that’s okay. I don’t want or need to be one of those authors blasting across Facebook that I have 150 five star reviews. (At one time, Rainbow Award Finalist and Jessewave Top Ten Book of 2009 Fire Season had over a dozen 4.5 and 5 star reviews, but 150? Not even counting Goodreads and Amazon did it hit 150.) Frankly, I don’t believe the veracity of those claims or at least, I don’t believe all of them. I have the evil sense that they went to Fiverr and paid $5 for a bunch of 5 star reviews from people who never read the book.

RR-cir-125Now, the authors exchanging reviews thing is a little different. As a published author, and as a person with very little time to read, I don’t waste my time on books that are not my specific reading genre. So if an author of a self-help book solicits a review from me in exchange for reviewing my book, I’m going to turn him down. I don’t read self help books much and I don’t feel it would be right of me to read something I don’t really want to read. And I’m sure I don’t want to force my gay rom on a straight arrow author. I can just imagine the fiasco that review would be!

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But you know, I see all those requests for trading reviews (trading opinions really) from the self published authors on those review groups on Facebook. Once in awhile I’ll click on the link to the person’s book to see if it’s something I might want to read. Usually, it’s not. Today, however, there was one.

I clicked the link which took me to Smashwords, thinking maybe I could trade reviews with this author. I clicked the sample function to check out the book. Guess what I found? A prologue that was an info dump. A first chapter poorly written and punctuated with more info dump and a plethora of passive voice. I don’t believe it was edited. And if it was edited, the author wasted the money she paid for the edit. It was not a book I would have contracted back when I was an acquisitions editor. The author needs to hone her craft better because what she put out was entirely sub-standard.

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So how can I justify doing a trade of reviews with her? Yes, her book is in the genre that I read. Yes, I could give her an honest review, but that review would be hard pressed to make two stars. And if I reviewed her book and honestly said I didn’t like it and noted all the stuff I said above about the lack of quality in the writing, editing and content, would that author then be angry enough to trash my book in review? It would be her honest opinion after all except that it would be biased based on her anger at my review of her book.

And that brings me back to the whole conundrum of whether or not to participate in these review swaps. I guess I need to read the samples first before I decide to do a swap and read the other author’s reviews of other people’s books too. After all, if I can clearly see in the sample that an author needs to go back to the classroom, that’s not a book I want to be involved with even in terms of a review. And if I can see from an author’s other reviews of books that he/she is snarky and/or mean or doesn’t write an honest review where you can see that they read the book, then I don’t want that person reviewing me. I’d rather do without, thank you very much.

fourjunkiesratingsA trade of opinions, er reviews, is only good if it benefits both people. If you’re going to trade reviews, make sure you’re willing to give the book and the author a fair shake. Only do reviews of books you would normally read. Check the book sample out first so you aren’t stuck reviewing something substandard or something you can’t say anything positive about. Check out the other author first and make sure your book is something they would probably enjoy reading.

Don’t set yourself up for failure! Asking someone who is straight and doesn’t read romance to review a gay rom is asking for trouble. It’s like subbing a sexually explicit BDSM book to a Christian inspirational publisher. You’re doomed to be disappointed.

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Thus far, I haven’t engaged in any trading of reviews. The stuff I’ve been interested in is either written by someone who doesn’t read my genre or, like the book I mentioned above, has been so poorly written I know I couldn’t give it a positive review. And I won’t review something I can’t say something positive about.

So I guess my little rant about trading opinions is that you need to use caution doing this because the old saying really is true. Opinions (aka reviews) are like assholes. Everyone has one and occasionally it stinks…to someone.

Happy Saturday everyone!

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PS: Yes, the graphics used in this post were all earned by my books. If you’re interested in seeing how my latest releases are doing at review sites, here’s some info:

For Bitter Bonds, 5 paddles from BDSM Book Reviews and 4.5 stars from Joyfully Jay!

4 Sweet Peas from Mrs. Condit Reads Books for Mixed Tape Vol 2 which has Save Your Love in it.

4 stars from Smile Somebody Loves You for Save Your Love and 2.5 stars from MM Good Book Reviews. (It was a positive review but the book was too sweet for the reviewer!)

Bitter Bonds

I’ll admit, I’ve been seriously busy. It’s tax time and I’ve got a million other things going on at the same time. I’m even out of time to post here. Time to head to the EDJ. But I did want to drop some info here on the blog about one of the things that’s kept me busy…Bitter Bonds.

Bitter Bonds is book 2 of the Souls in Bondage series that I started with Broken Bonds which has been a best seller at All Romance eBooks and a gay romance best seller at Amazon. Bitter Bonds isn’t quite as angsty as Broken Bonds and it takes place over a longer span of time. (Broken Bonds took place on Christmas Eve.) Both heroes have issues though.

The twink angels are back trying to fix things as their wings molt. We meet other people from Darkness, the leather club. We find out that the series is set in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Haven, Micah and Nick are all back. And you get to meet Finn and Jake whose love story has some heartwrenching moments.

Here’s the cover, trailer link and the blurb and then I’m off to work!

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Blurb:

Dominant Jake Conrad isn’t going to get involved in another relationship with a sub. His motto is burn me once shame on you, burn me twice shame on me. Burned by a former submissive,  Jake vows never to collar one again. And then his best friend Ray brings him a sub like no other. Finn is as broken as Jake is bitter. But the white haired submissive has secrets and talents Jake never dreamed of and the lure of Finn’s need for protection calls to Jake’s soul. Everyone Finn has ever loved has walked away from him. He fears caring for anyone when he knows the outcome will shatter his heart again. When Finn finds himself falling for Jake, he gives his lover the ultimate gift, a chance to have the dreams he set aside years before even though he knows that if Jake accepts the gift, he’ll walk out of Finn’s life forever.  A slave to his love for his dominant, the submissive finds his true strength in erasing Jake’s bitterness even at the cost of his own happiness.

Bitter Bonds will be coming later in February. Happy Monday everyone!

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What Would the Neighbors Do?

I’m back from resting after my month long blogging and annual giveaway. I figured I’d start right out with a funny tale about where I live. I live in a canyon, literally on the edge of a hill. I look out my door and all I see is hills and cows. It’s a mobile home and yes, I live in a trailer park.

Since I’m at the end of the road, I only have one next door neighbor and I rarely see her. Her driveway is next to the backside of my house. Our mailboxes sit at the end of her driveway and the narrow walkway that runs along the back of my house. Most mobile homes have a back door on the carport side of the house. That’s true of her house, but not my house. My carport is wide, not long like most. You have to cross my carport to get to my porch and my front door.

Since my house doesn’t conform to the normal patterns it throws the mailman, the UPS guy and the Fedex guy for a loop. They end up knocking on our back door when there’s a package. Or if they are particularly stupid, they just leave it on the back door step and don’t bother to knock at all.

Now, my washer and dryer are pretty new. Not even two years old. Nice front loaders that we bought when we moved in. They’re just an eensy bit too deep for the washer and dryer space in our laundry room so, of course, that back door won’t open.

Rott tends to watch out for any packages we have coming. For awhile we had a decent Fedex guy who always figured out where the front door was. But most of the stuff we get comes UPS or US mail. The mailmen we’ve had out here? Seriously? They have the IQ of a dirt clod.  They never knock if there’s a package. The package is always left at the back door and it always looks like the moron tried to shove it in the mailbox first. Yep. Crushed box.

So Rott and I shop at a few places online. New Egg, Bath and Body Works, Amazon, Crutchfield, Wen…and Adam and Eve. Rott likes the anonymous looking packages from there. They crack him up mostly because we could give a doody if anyone knows we bought something from there.

The last thing we got from Adam & Eve (NSFW!) wasn’t a very big package. The names of the items were pretty amusing so we couldn’t resist. Anyway, Rott was watching out for the package. He figured it would come in a padded envelope and get shoved into the mailbox.

NUH UH. It got left on the back door step. The only reason Rott knew it was there was because the next door neighbor was standing on our sidewalk holding it in her hand. He heard a sound and peeked out the back door window and there she was. He bolted for the front door, around the front of the house and found her stand there turning the package over in her hands. Slowly, she handed it to him.

“Um, I was going to bring it around to your door,” she said. “I didn’t know if you’d already checked your mail today. Didn’t want the package to get left out. Looks like rain.”

And with that she back to her house. Rott went back into our house.  He thought about it for awhile and when I came home he told me the story. Then he tells me, “I think she was gonna steal it.”

I blinked. “Why would she steal it? She doesn’t have a boyfriend or a spouse that I’ve seen.”

“I dunno, but I think she was gonna steal it. She knew what Adam & Eve was and she was gonna take the toy.” He was adamant.

We looked at each other in silence for a long moment. Then we both went, “EWWWWW!”

Then Rott laughed. “Can you imagine what would happen if the old geezer across the street got it? That mailman’s dumb enough to get the boxes wrong. It could happen.”

For once, I really, really did not want to know what the neighbors would do.

And now some Lex Valentine news…Broken Bonds has been selling well and made it up to #5 or so on the Amazon gay romance list. But yesterday I got an email from ZAM because she saw that Broken Bonds had made it to #1 on All Romance eBook’s Top Ten List. WOOT! I was so excited! It’s an all around bestseller this little Christmas novella. It makes me really happy.

Before I go, I have to show off the cover I did for my friend author AC Katt. I can’t wait to read this book and I was so excited to do the cover for Jim’s story.

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It’s sort of the sequel to A Matter of Trust so go read that one first!

One last thing, does anyone know WTF is up with the Twitter feed widgets? I cannot find one that works! Anyway, that’s it for me. I’ll be back next Monday with some other tidbits about my life and writing! Happy Monday!

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30 Days of Christmas New Year’s Eve Giveaway

We’ve made it to the end of 2012 and to the end of my 30 Days of Christmas Giveaway. My last giveaway is a huge New Year’s Eve MM blow out. Before I tell you about the books up for grabs, I need to announce the winner of Day 30 of the giveaway.

Congratulations to…GAIL! You win all the books! Now, a secondary winner was drawn for Jamie Leigh Hanson’s books. That winner is… PENUMBRA! Congrats!

Now, let’s take a look at this loooong list of over 30 awesome MM books that are available to win this New Year’s Eve!

Kate HillBlack Cat

Vampire Edmond Chancellor and cat shifter Tobias Crawford have had a not-so-secret affair for over three hundred years. Edmond wants to bond with Tobias permanently, but Tobias has reasons for keeping his distance.

On a chilly December night, both men turn to past memories for guidance, but it’s a present danger that makes them realize that time is precious, even to men who are practically immortal.

Kim KnoxBitter Harvest

It’s 2050, and humans are an endangered species. Lieutenant Robert Sutton has survived the collapse of civilization by luck, his wits, and a chance mutation that makes him immune to the nano-virus that has wiped out millions. Now, his compound of survivors is surrounded by the infected, who are driven by the need to spread the contagion through sex. It is only a matter of time before they attack. So when Sutton is assigned to interrogate a prisoner who claims to have overcome the infection, he immediately suspects a trap…

Nicholas Rider may have survived the virus, but he’s a changed man, ruled by his desires. But his need for Sutton is different. Rider craves an end to his overwhelming needs, and Sutton could be the man to do it.

Secure in his belief that he’s invulnerable, Sutton can’t understand or resist his intense attraction to his prisoner. Will Rider be his downfall–or his savior?

Barry BrennesselTinseltown

Film student Micah Malone learns the hard way that when life sucks, you can’t just yell “Cut! Let’s do another take!”

His grades are a box-office bomb. His friends create more drama than a soap opera. And his love life needs a laughtrack. While there’s no script to dictate what happens next, can Micah find the direction he needs? Life, after all, is no film school project. But it is great source material. The only source material.

Let the cameras roll. Micah’s quirky story has begun filming.

Neil PlakcyThree Lambs: Erotic Tales of a Gay Frat

Lambda Lambda Lambda, the all-gay fraternity at Florida University (FU) in Miami, is the setting for eleven hot new stories by master of gay erotica Neil Plakcy. Sexy college guys get it on with each other, with models and construction workers and security guards.

Join them all for some very hot times in colorful, multi-ethnic Miami.

 

JP Bowie – Murder By Proxy: A Nick Fallon Investigation

Nick Fallon and Jeff Stevens take on what they consider an easy case – taking photgraphs of a man cheating on his wife – but they don’t expect to see the guy shot down right in front of them . What follows is a bewildering series of events – – and who can they believe? The dead man’s fiancee, her gay brother, her less than loving father, or his wife – the woman who hired them in the first place? When the fiancee turns up missing, Nick and Jeff have their hands full trying to sort the truth from the lies – and when Nick is left to face dangerous gunmen alone, who knows what the outcome will be.

Willa OkatiLovers, Dreamers and Me

Tolliver’s buried his life in taking care of his sister and the independent bookstore his grandmother left him. That doesn’t leave much time for romance or fun. Sarah, his sister, thinks he’s getting hidebound and decides to do a little matchmaking. Only the first problem with which is that her choice is another man, and Tolliver’s not gay!

It turns out, Noble’s not either. But he is attracted to Tolliver, deeply, and as a seer, he knows they can be together, if they can just figure this out. He’s not above using his psychic gifts to draw them together on a sexual journey to self-discovery, but the road has more twists and turns — and toys — than even he ever dreamed.

Belinda McBrideSilver/Steel

When dream hunter Dylan Ryve spots a beautiful shapeshifter raising hell in a bar, he knows he wants the wild young man. But Travis Feris is more to Dylan than a few hot minutes outside in the snow; he’s the assassin’s ticket into the magical town of Arcada. He didn’t plan to rescue the kid, but when he found the shifter being attacked, the opportunity to play hero was too good to pass up.

Through the solitude of a long winter night, Dylan walks in Travis’s fevered dreams, learning about Arcada and the pack, and showing the shifter the man he’d been so very long ago. When morning comes, both men know their lives will be forever entwined.

From Dylan, Travis learns that he is a strong, valued member of the pack. The dreamwalker sees his own worth reflected back at him in the dark blue eyes of the wolf. Yet when Dylan has the chance to free himself from centuries of enslavement, can he betray the man he has come to love?

Jambrea Jo JonesOnce Upon a King, Fairy Gay Father

Flair Coruscate maybe be king of the dragons, but he doesn’t want to rule in the bedroom. Sometimes, it isn’t good to be the king. Saber Von Stein just wants to live a normal human life in the magical kingdom, but a curse has him hunting out an audience with the king in hopes of escaping the clutches of an evil wizard family. With a little Fairy Godmother magic and a royal ball can the King and the human have a happily ever after?

Although this book can be read on its own, we recommend reading Steamy Reunion first.

Ryan Keats is tired of his escort ways. No new tricks and the same old partying friends just aren’t cutting it anymore. A chance encounter with a random stranger has him pissed off and intrigued at the same time. Cordell Winston is hot, hard and bossy. Cord could be the man to get Ryan out of his funk, or the big oaf could be just another notch on his bedpost.

 

Kay BerrisfordCatching Kit

He was supposed to trap him, not fall in love.

When government agent and Ethereal Being hunter, Denny, has to imprison an elf in his garage overnight, his life spins out of control. Caught and cuffed on the London Underground, Kit shatters everything Denny’s been taught about elves. How can Kit be a dangerous, mind-reading cipher who preys on human emotions? Kit’s gorgeous and funny, and he’s got a cute arse. He even shares Denny’s quiet kinks for bondage and cross-dressing. Or so Kit claims.

When Kit wiles his way into Denny’s house for a session of mind-blowing sex, the elf seems too good to be true–until reality strikes. Denny’s fucked an elf. A prisoner in his charge. If he doesn’t take Kit to the containment depot he’s in big trouble, and Kit’s about to drop an equally devastating bombshell. The elf’s been searching a thousand years for a bloke like Denny. He ‘gets’ Denny’s kinks, adores role play and women’s panties, and now he needs Denny’s love to survive.

Is Kit preying on Denny’s emotions, or can Denny trust him? If so, dare Denny break the law and gamble his life to save the Ethereal Being in his bed?

Stevie WoodsChoices

Best friends since kindergarten, Ben and James are separated after college graduation by their different choices. Ben stays in their small hometown while James heads off to New York with dreams of money and success. Ben works to make his life follow the path he wants, and dreams of the day when James realizes he made a mistake and comes back home.

Each man promises to stay in touch, but this falls by the wayside as James’ life in the big city takes off, leaving Ben yearning for a dream that gradually fades as the years pass.

In New York, James finds that not all dreams are worth the cost of a wrong choice.

AC KattA Matter of Trust

Donald K. Drummond is the Master of all he surveys; a legend in commercial real estate in New Jersey by day and by night a Master Dom at the gay BDSM club, Indiscrete. What he couldn’t find was a boy to call his own. That all changed when a nerd with taped glasses and worn Dockers barged into his office spilling his bottle of 1985 Bourdeau over his priceless Persian carpet. Brian Murphy came with a host of troubles, the least of which was his grasping Aunt, his invalid mother and his rather tenious position in Donald’s mail room.Can a Dom with issues of his own come to train and trust a needy boy from his own mailroom. It’s all A Matter of Trust.

Cheryl DragonHot Rivals

Jay and Robbie both bare their bodies at the most popular strip club in Vegas. Pleasing the customer is their main job. However, Jay isn’t going to let the new guy knock him out of the top spot without playing dirty. Dating another stripper is asking for trouble, but in the end Jay finds himself being seduced by the sexiest cowboy in Vegas!

 

Lisa HenryDark Space

Brady Garrett needs to go home. Brady’s a conscripted recruit on Defender Three, one of a network of stations designed to protect the Earth from alien attack. Brady is angry, homesick, and afraid. If he doesn’t get home he’ll lose his family, but there’s no way back except in a body bag.

Cameron Rushton needs a heartbeat. Four years ago Cam was taken by the Faceless — the alien race that almost destroyed Earth. Now he’s back, and when the doctors make a mess of getting him out of stasis, Brady becomes his temporary human pacemaker. Except they’re sharing more than a heartbeat: they’re sharing thoughts, memories, and some very vivid dreams.

Not that Brady’s got time to worry about his growing attraction to another guy, especially the one guy in the universe who can read his mind. It doesn’t mean anything. It’s just biochemistry and electrical impulses. It doesn’t change the truth: Brady’s alone in the universe.

Now the Faceless are coming and there’s nothing anyone can do. You can’t stop your nightmares. Cam says everyone will live, but Cam’s probably a traitor and a liar like the military thinks. But that’s okay. Guys like Brady don’t expect happy endings.

Avril AshtonLove the Sinner

A notorious gang leader and an NYPD cop. An unlikely couple, but is it true what they say? Could Gabe hate the sin but love the sinner?

Detective Gabriel Ashby has never looked twice at another man, yet the criminal across from him, the man he’s interrogating, isn’t like any other. Gabe can’t deal with the sudden, intense need he has for one of NYPD’s Most Wanted. Everyone close to Angelo Pagan ends up dead, with the smug gang leader standing amid the rubble. Gabe would love nothing more than to bust Angelo’s ass and lock him up. So why is he seeing the bastard in his dreams at night?

Angelo Pagan knows attraction to Gabe is suicide. He’s resolute to ignore the chemistry…until a police raid goes wrong. He critically injures Gabe, changing the trajectory of both their lives. Now the two can’t get close enough. They settle into a forbidden affair threatened by lies and betrayal, living on different sides of the law with no way of breaching the gap between them. With the authorities looking to make an example of Angelo, Gabe has to decide if it’s really worth it to hate the sin but love the sinner.

Evelyn ShepherdHere I Am

Sawyer never it saw it coming. He never expected Jesse to finally respond to him. He never expected the meteors to take out LeVeque tower.

He never expected an old woman to try and eat his face off. Sawyer thought that when he went into work that night it just be another boring evening at the bookstore. But the impromptu quickie in the bathroom is just the beginning. Sawyer, with his gorgeously infuriating boss Jesse, his best friend Chloe and her little brother Jaden are in for more than a boring night.

The undead are rising up and they will have to find their way through the aftermath. With the aid of Jesse’s wryly sexy ex-lover/best friend Topher, they will attempt to head south to find a safe haven in a world turned to bedlam. But with the government keeping secrets and the infected turning, it’ll prove that the nightmare is far from over.

As Sawyer struggles to come to terms with his new world, he’ll also face the conflicting truth that he is in love with not one, but two, men.

It leads him to ask life’s great question: can you find love in a zombie apocalypse?

Anna LeeThe Prince of Galerir

Dragons, a usurper, a sickly king, and a hidden prince with his beloved knight all have plans for the fate of the kingdom of Galerir…

Long ago, magik was banished from the kingdom of Galerir. Yet when two young men who share a forbidden passion discover a dragon hatchling, they unwittingly set a course of events in motion that will change the kingdom and their lives forever. All Lord Tomas Roland wants is a life where he is free to love his knight, Griffin Dalison. Yet the chains of responsibility wind tighter around Tomas when it is revealed that he is the heir to the kingdom of Galerir. Tomas and Griffin must reach Galerir’s ailing king before a usurper has the chance to seize the throne. With Griffin as his touchstone, Tomas delves into the unfamiliar worlds of politics and magik. But will Tomas be able to keep his love by his side once he becomes the prince of Galerir?

Amber GreenGolden Boys

With his easy laugh and knowing eyes, Jell grew up street, while I was raised to be a pillar of society. When the FBI asked me to betray him–the guy I’ve crushed on since ninth grade–I went straight to Jell. So he and I have one less secret between us. Which would be great if we didn’t have to escape a psychiatric clinic in the middle of the night, half naked, with people shooting at us. The only refuge we can agree to head for is my crazy cousin Gator’s retirement village.

Now we’re lost. We’re cold. And I’ve never been so alive.

Leta Blake & Keira AndrewsEarthly Desires

Cursed as an infant with a lack of physical and emotional gravity, Prince Efrosin can’t keep his feet on the ground or his head out of the clouds. Laughing his way through life, he’s never been weighed down by love and lust.

Then one fateful day, his tenuous tie to the earth is severed and he blows away on the wind. He’s rescued by Dmitri, a handsome young woodsman who suffers from a mysterious curse of his own, and the two strangers are irresistibly drawn together. Experiencing sex and love for the first time, they dive into a delightfully sensual and passionate affair.

But the evil witch who cursed them is planning her ultimate revenge. Efrosin and Dmitri must fight to find their fairy tale ending and live happily ever after.

Charley DescoteauxComfort and Joy

Sam and Charlie have been together over a decade, and their commitment to each other has only grown stronger through the years. But love isn’t always easy, and eighteen months after a violent assault, their fairy-tale relationship is still struggling. Charlie can’t shake the lingering fear of attracting more violence by displaying affection, and he’s angry at himself for not getting past it. Sam would do anything to help Charlie feel better—if only he knew what that was.

The century-old farmhouse in Northwest Oregon is the perfect place to spend the holidays with Sam’s family, but it was their refuge after the attack, and it still holds painful memories of those difficult first months. Christmas should be a joyful time, but even being surrounded by people who love him isn’t enough to make Charlie feel safe. He could try to keep to himself, but even if Sam agreed to give him the space he needs, Sam’s warm and loving family might not. And even though they agreed not to exchange gifts, Sam has a surprise up his sleeve that he hopes will make everything merry and bright. But he may end up more surprised than Charlie before the week is out…

Sage MarloweNewborn

If what you love the most and what you hate the most become the same, which emotion will win?

Parker Rowe has hated vampires with a passion ever since his family was murdered by a gang of malicious vampires, and he has been trying to hunt down the culprits for years.

A promising clue leads him into a small, secluded town where he meets Josh Summers. Sweet and innocent, Josh is as much out of place in Parker’s world of revenge and violence as he is in his own narrow-minded community, but he can give Parker the peace of mind he craves. When the vampires Parker is chasing use Josh to deliver a very special message, Parker finds himself facing the ultimate dilemma. If what he loves and what he hates the most become the same, which emotion will win?

While Parker struggles to accept the changes his lover goes through, he comes closer than ever to detecting the truth about his family’s deaths—but then his own life takes a dramatic turn…

Nessa VincentSea Change

Ben and Grant’s first date starts on the dance floor and ends up in the bedroom. The sex is fantastic, but then things get weird: Ben starts seeing fairies in the backyard, Grant turns into a sea monster, and a visitor pops in to inform them that they’re now supernaturally bound together—in other words, soul mates.

Ben’s inexperience and Grant’s history of casual flings leave them equally unprepared for a committed relationship. Grant tries to protect Ben from aggressive supernatural creatures, but Grant’s water-dragon form is helpless on dry land. The supernatural isn’t just pixies and hobgoblins, either. A nasty piece of work named Cyril wants Grant on his side in a coming supernatural battle. To Cyril, Ben is only a complication.

Their lives will go back to normal if they no longer care for each other, and Grant begins to wonder if leaving Ben is the only way to keep him safe. But the love growing between them is real, and both men have to be prepared to fight for it—and each other.

Annette GisbyOf Pets and Pleasures, The Prince’s Guard

The native population of Terra Five have been enslaved by humans for centuries. Owning a pleasure slave is seen as a sign of status, but Sebastian Bennet has never felt the need to own a pleasure slave before. That all changes when he meets the handsome alien youth, Haleth, and decides he must have him for his own.

And as for Haleth, he has little choice in the matter – become a slave or eke out a miserable existence homeless on the streets of Terra Five.

Prince Dashan has been used to getting things his own way, with servants to cater to his every whim. As the crown prince, it is essential that he is protected and he is followed everywhere by his bodyguard, Ryland. Dashan can’t even head to a tavern with his friends without Ryland somehow turning up and spoiling his fun.

Dashan disguises himself as a peasant one night and sneaks off to the brothel that he’s heard rumours about – a brothel that caters for men who like men. The prince finds it difficult to admit to himself what his true desires are – he yearns to submit his will to someone else. And Ryland is just the man to show him what that truly means.

Amber SkyzeOut to Protect

Someone is killing prostitutes and Grant Wesson has been assigned to find out who the killer is. Problem is he just came out to his best friend and partner. Ralph didn’t take it so well, so Grant’s been reassigned to the new kid on the block Parker Sloane.

Parker is young, sexy and very much in the closet. Grant fights the growing attraction he’s feeling for his new partner, until Parker changes things up.

Parker wants to break the rules and have sex with his new partner. The sex is the hottest Parker’s ever had. He wants to elevate things even higher and step out of his vanilla lifestyle.

The killer has set his sights on Grant.

To relieve stress, Grant falls into bed with the hot lover. Parker promises to protect Grant from the killer, but it’s his heart that needs protecting.

Ken DahllIrish Punk, The Snow Ball

Robert’s penchant for collecting characters from real life to populate his fictional world gets him into trouble–big time! He stares a little too long and too intently at Timothy as the young bank teller orders lunch at the sub shop. Robert envisions Tim as the archetypical young New York City Irish Five Points gang member. His thorough inventory of Tim’s physical attributes, including his raw sexuality, is noted by the nineteen year old.

Outside in the parking lot Tim accosts Robert in a threatening manner; but relents when Robert agrees to service the punk at a nearby video arcade. The demands from Tim increase to include his older brother Brian, a Deputy Sheriff, and some of his colleagues. Each encounter with the Irish brothers is more intense that the prior one, the sex escalating to bondage and whippings. All the while Robert expects Brian to cross the final line.

Robert’s feelings for Tim grow as the kid’s plight becomes more intolerable. Robert’s concern inspires him to discover Brian’s deeply buried secret which could hold the solution to Tim’s desperate situation.

Sex, exploitation, lust, and love come together in the New England all male college preparatory school where Chet and Bryce are roommates.  Chet proclaims his bisexuality; Bryce willingly submits to his roommate’s insatiable sexual demands holding out the fantasy that someday something less exploitative and more romantic will develop.

Bryce convinces himself that Chet really loves him and that the macho soccer player’s sexual exploitations conceal his true feeling as a defense mechanism resulting from internalized homophobia.  Not even a concussion accidentally caused by Chet can shake Bryce’s romantic fantasies.  As the winter holiday approaches in their senior year, Chet unsuccessfully tries to get into the panties of any cheerleader from a nearby girl’s school while Bryce becomes involved with the campus GLBT group and takes on responsibility for decorations at the annual Snow Ball dance between the two schools−harboring romantic notions of being escorted to the event by Chet.

Tension between the two reaches its peak the night of the dance; a tension not alleviated by the eruption of near violence when another gay student, Trevor, asks Bryce to dance a slow number with him.  Amid catcalls and treats of bodily harm from the football and soccer team members, Bryce and his friends, including lesbians from the girl’s school, defend their right to dance together.  Bryce is stunned by Chet’s reaction to the situation.

Tristram La RocheOn My Knees

Surviving on alcohol and antidepressants, Mark staggers through his unhappy marriage and watches his London architectural business head for the rocks. When another nasty argument with his wife sends him to the gym to blow off steam, a tall, dark stranger enflames a part of him he’s denied all these years, trying to convince himself he’s not “weird.” But Mark’s not weird, he’s gay. And after a taste of Attila’s lips, nothing can put that genie back in the bottle…

Becky Black – Ganymede Tilt

Union man Sean Morgan and mining company executive Alex Jackson already know how good they are together, after sleeping together several times. But when they find themselves facing each other across a negotiating table they know their relationship has to become strictly professional.

It’s no big deal, they think–until they try it. It’s only after they stop seeing each other that they realize they had started something deeper and have stronger feelings than either has admitted. But giving in to temptation now can only lead to trouble. Alex fears involvement with Sean will cause him to repeat a mistake that almost cost him his career. For Sean it may destroy the dreams he’s already waited too long to pursue.

When they lose the battle with temptation they must try their best to leave Morgan and Jackson outside the door, and just be Alex and Sean. But the outside world can’t be kept out forever.

KM MahoneyThe Lonely Heart

If you ask Isaiah Preston, he’s pretty lucky. He’s happy in his job as a ranch manager, admires his boss, Grady, in more ways than one, and if he doesn’t have everything he wants, well, that’s life, isn’t it?

Enter one little brother, and suddenly Isaiah’s comfortable world is turned upside down. Everything becomes complicated and he’s seeing people in ways he never has before – good and bad. Near perfect isn’t enough anymore. Isaiah wants it all – home, family and, most importantly, Grady, in both his life and bed.

To get what he wants, though, Isaiah is going to have to fight prejudice, misunderstanding, and even Grady himself.

Lex Valentine – Breathe Me In

Life is good for vampire Wilson North.  His family left him well off. His job as an estate attorney is prestigious, well paying, and non-demanding.  He’s gay and out and never had any issues being either. In fact, until the day he ended up beneath his car, bleeding out and only a few pints of blood from a sure trip to the Afterworld, life had never been a challenge.

When Will meets his destiny in the form of an enigmatic Magia named Garrick Forrester he finds the challenge of his life. Garrick’s gay but doesn’t live an openly gay life.  Instead, he hides his nature behind his ownership of a BDSM club.  The two men instantly know they are mates, but that doesn’t smooth the path to their bonding.  Garrick wants Will but threats from his past convince him that the only way to protect his lover is to leave him. Shocked by Garrick’s ability to walk away, Will struggles to understand why his mate doesn’t want him.  For the first time in Will’s life, something isn’t easy and he must fight for what he needs or give up his chance for happiness.

Drawn together by destiny. Torn apart by self-doubts and fear. Two men on the cusp of a dream must set aside the lives they’ve always lived for a chance at a new and brilliant future.

Warning: This book contains virgin sex between a sexy self-sacrificing wizard who’s never been catcher and an angelic-faced vampire who’s never pitched, a BDSM bad guy with dark magic, a mysterious royal Acerbian, and a host of characters from previous Tales books who do everything from implode buildings to change diapers…all to help two reluctant heroes find true love.

In addition to these books, Dev Bentham is offering choice of her backlist to the winner and Lynn Lorenz is offering the winner their choice of any of her Amber Allure books which you can see HERE.

This is a truly amazing line up. There’s books here I’ve never read and am dying to! (I get no perks doing this!) There’s one of my all time favorite books here (Kim Knox’s Bitter Harvest is one I’ve read over and over and over again.) There’s one of my favorite characters from a series (Jeff from JP Bowie’s book.) A half dozen of these authors are people I’ve met in person and nearly a dozen of them I’ve worked with in some capacity (covers, graphics, trailers.) This is the single biggest giveaway I’ve ever done. And it’s all for YOU.

So for a chance to win, comment on this post by midnight Pacific time on New Year’s Eve. Come 2013, your chance will be gone!

Happy New Year!

Day 29: 30 Days of Christmas 2012

The winner for Day 28’s giveaway is JoAnna B. I’ve already sent off my menage book and the other authors will be contacting her as well. Congrats!

Today, I have some really great looking books from a set of authors I know you’ll love! Toni Aleo, Roz Lee, and Destiny Blaine all have books you are going to drool over. Toni’s book is paperback…a signed copy no less! And Destiny is offering her entire series! WOW! Just to top it all off, I’m throwing in a copy of one of my Christmas Cowboy books! Let’s see what’s up for grabs…

Toni Aleo – Empty Net

Definition of an Empty Net: When a team pulls the goalie for an extra attacker, desperately seeking a goal.

Audrey Parker was in a horrible place.

She hated her job, her sister was getting married and moving out, but worst of all, she was in love with a total jerk. No matter what she did, every guy she met hurt her. All she wanted was her happily ever after. Her Prince Charming. Her Lucas Brooks! She didn’t know how to change her life but she knew she needed to.  Feeling like she was about to hit rock bottom, Audrey wakes up next to Tate Odder.

Tate Odder had lost everything.

After being brought up from the Assassins’ farm team, the Florida Rays to the Nashville Assassins, Tate hopes he’ll forget everything he has lost. He doesn’t. Each day gets harder to live in a place he doesn’t know. Even being the first rookie goalie to shut out an opposing team three times during the Lord Stanley Cup Finals, he still felt empty. With the loss of his parents and sister still heavy on his heart, Tate isn’t sure how to live like everything is okay.

But when he wakes up beside Audrey Parker, things start to change. She turns his life upside down with her kooky sense of humor and her bright clothing. She is intelligent and beautiful, and for once, he doesn’t feel empty.

Will Audrey be the person to fill the holes in Tate’s heart, making him whole again? Or will another player ruin everything, leaving him feeling forever like an empty net?

Roz Lee -Still Taking Chances

BUY LINK

After a mission in a South American jungle goes wrong, DEA Agent Elgin ‘Hud’ Huddleston returns to his boyhood home to lick his wounds. Despite his better judgment, Hud is drawn to the woman across the street, a petite Dominatrix with a freeze your balls off name.

Mary Beth Winters packed away her toys and put the BDSM lifestyle behind her years ago when she realized the men she dominated didn’t need her as much as she needed them. But when a troubled bad-boy, Elgin ‘Hud’ Huddleston, moves in across the street, she dusts off her toy box and risks her heart to help him heal.

Destiny Blaine -The Winning Virgin Series (Below is the blurb for Winning Virgin Promises, one of the books in the series)

Gabriel Sabbat is the secondary mate for Constance Spenser. He knows the feel of her skin, the touch of her hand, the true experience of her body. He participated in his brother’s mating ceremony and he didn’t walk away from the event unscathed. His heart is heavy and he is in love with a woman he may take as his own but there will be sacrifices, and consequences.

Constance belongs to Sebastian but she’s never forgotten the time she spent with Gabriel. When Sebastian doesn’t return home, news circulates and word travels fast. Sebastian is in trouble and he may not return to Scotland.

With time running out for Constance and the needs of a vampire mate quickly surfacing, Gabriel is called upon as a secondary and Constance isn’t happy with the turn of events. In fact, she’s out for more than a little blood to keep her alive. She’s looking for answers and knows precisely how to get them and when Sebastian returns home, he finds quite a surprise.

Lex Valentine – Christmas Wishes

BUY LINK

Bradley Marsh is spending Christmas with his sister Devon and her husband Jared. In the past, he managed to avoid the holidays at Forbes Ranch. But now, he’s there and faced with the woman he’s wanted for eight long years. With his 30th birthday on the horizon and all his friends settling down, Brad’s tired of being single and tired of yearning for a woman who doesn’t know he exists. This year, his only wish is to make the woman of his dreams his own.

For years, Anne-Marie Mallory’s mourned the death of her husband and high school sweetheart Danny. But more recently, she’s had her eye on hunky younger man Brad Marsh even though she’s sure his crush is because he feels sorry for her. She wishes Brad would stop seeing her as the grieving widow of a decorated war hero and start seeing her as a woman in her prime who needs a man like him to make her holiday – and her life – complete.

For a chance to win all these books, comment on this post by midnight Pacific time! There’s only two more days left in the giveaway and New Year’s Eve is going to be a big MM blow out so keep coming back!

Happy Holidays!