Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Entranced, Electric Desert Nights Book 1, by Jewel Quinlan – Release Blitz



When vampire, Wade, is told by a psychic that he’s going to meet his soulmate at Electric Daisy Carnival in Las Vegas, he thinks it’s a load of crap. It’s where paranormal beings go every year to feed on human partygoers. But Wade’s curiosity won’t stop plaguing him while he’s there with his friends.When a near fatal accident thrusts him together with beautiful Yesenia, a human, both their eyes are opened to the mystical connection between them.

Where you can buy it:

Amazon |iBooks  |  Kobo|Nook  |  All Romance eBooks

Add it to your shelf on Goodreads

Enjoy this excerpt:

“Hey, Scarlett, you want to know why Wade’s scrutinizing every chick that passes?”
Scarlett perked up. “Why?”
Wade frowned at the incubus’s teasing tone. “What? I’m hungry.”
An amused smile spread across Somer’s handsome face. “Wade’s soulmate is supposed to be here tonight. Come on, Wade. You don’t really believe what that hag in Miami said, do you?”
“What hag?” Scarlett looked back and forth at the two of them.
Wade stuck his hands in his jean pockets and kicked at some litter on the ground. “No.”
It had been a mistake to pop into the psychic’s shop while he’d been with Somer at Ultra Music Festival in Miami. But, at the time, he’d been a little drunk and high himself because he’d fed on the blood of several people who’d been under the influence. Getting his fortune read had seemed like a bit of random fun. But when he’d sat down with the woman at her velvet-covered table and spread the colorful tarot cards out before her, her eyes and tone had pierced him with their gravity.
The candles in the sconces on the wall behind her had made her head seem like it was a floating oracle—probably because he’d been high—and it had mesmerized him. “You are going to have an unusually long life,” she’d said glancing at his palm. “And you will have no lack of good health.”
Somer, sitting next to him, had started sniggering at that point.
Then she looked at the cards on the table. “You’ve had a happy life so far, but you want more,” she said. “A while ago, something inside you led you to seek an unusual path. But this path is not as wonderful as you expected it to be. Something is missing.” Her long bony fingers had stroked at the images on the cards as though she were receiving messages by touching them.
Somer’s sniggering increased in volume, and the psychic had pinned him with her large milky eyes. In a low voice she’d asked him to wait outside because he was disrupting the flow of energy. He’d left without protest, and the psychic had proceeded with Wade’s reading. That’s when she’d gone into greater detail about his current life and his future. She’d commented on his constant travel, his small circle of tight-knit friends, and the loneliness he felt now. He hadn’t said a word to confirm or deny anything, but she’d been right. Vampires tended not to stay in any one place too long. And paranormal creatures tended to be loners, which meant it was difficult to make friends. At the time, Wade had been dwelling on the fact that the last remnants of his human life were fading away. The remainder of his human friends and relatives had died at the beginning of the year, and he no longer had anyone to look in on.
It wasn’t something he ever talked about, so having a stranger home in on his deepest feelings had made them even more real and depressing.
The psychic had swept away the first batch of cards and laid more down. She smiled as she gestured to a cluster of three with yellow backgrounds and pictures involving smiling people holding cups. “Things are going to change for the better. Happiness is on its way.”
He’d perked up at that and hope had streaked through him. He hadn’t realized how much he’d needed it until that moment, however ridiculous the whole thing was.
She flipped another card over. “You’re going to meet your soulmate.” She flipped two more cards over. “Yes. In June, at a place you’ve been before. There will be a lot of people there.”
There was only one place that could be. Here, at the twentieth anniversary of EDC. The reading had ended after that, and a stunned Wade had walked out and told Somer everything. Big mistake. He would never hear the end of it.
He knew the whole psychic thing was a bunch of bullshit. They were notorious liars. It was just that that damn jag of hope had taken root inside him. As the days had passed, curiosity had sprouted from it, one that demanded to be satisfied. And now he couldn’t stop himself from looking at all the girls the way he was. Would he know it was her on sight?
“What hag?” Scarlett asked again.
Somer filled her in than smirked and asked, “Do vampires even believe in love?”
Wade glared at him.
“Why wouldn’t they?” Scarlett said, her brown eyes filled with compassion. “Love is amazing. There’s no reason vampires should spend eternity without it. You just haven’t felt it yet, Somer.” Her face lit up as she said, “Someday you’ll see. It’s so powerful and freeing. Nick and I couldn’t imagine ever being apart. Even after all this time, it’s like I can still feel him.” A smile flashed across her pretty face. She was becoming more opaque, the wispy pale traces of her features were filling out and taking on healthy human colors. Her creamy skin was kissed with just a hint of sun, and her brown eyes were kind. Her clothing was the same outfit she’d died in, jean cutoff shorts and a fringed bikini top. She solidified every year on the anniversary of her death.
“So did this soothsayer give you any details at all? Did she describe the woman or tell you how you were going to meet?” Somer persisted.
“Nah, she just said I would meet my soulmate here.” Wade answered Somer’s teasing question for Scarlett’s benefit. Somer had only given her a short synopsis.
“What about a time? Did she give you a time?”
Scarlett shook her head. “You can be a real rascal sometimes, Somer.”
Wade’s fist streaked out in a blur to punch Somer in the gut.
“Oof!” Somer cringed back, hands pressed to his midsection. But the blow failed to wipe the smile off his face.
“No, she didn’t. Besides, if she was right—and I doubt that she is—I don’t have to look for her. She’ll come to me.” Wade shrugged. “Whatever. Let’s head over to Kinetic Field. DJ Momo is coming on soon.”
He turned and began walking, the other two trailing behind him. And, as the last glow of sunlight disappeared, Scarlett completed her shift into solid form.

About the Author:

Restless by nature, Jewel Quinlan is an avid traveler and has visited sixteen countries so far. Lover of ice cream, dark beer, and red wine she tries to stay fit when she’s not typing madly on her computer concocting another romance novel. In her spare time, she likes to do yoga, hike, learn German, and play with her spoiled Chihuahua, Penny.

For more information about Jewel Quinlan

Or join Jewel’s newsletter if you just want to get the most important updates

Monday, 24 October 2016

Empty Places by S A Laybourn

156 Pages
Publisher: Totally Bound
Buy links: Totally Bound      Amazon         Amazon UK
Erotic Romance / Thriller & Suspense

The blurb:

The world has its empty places, and so does the heart.

Ellie Freeman, a low-level Federal employee, is stuck in a dead-end desert town that no longer feels like home. What makes things worse is the threatening phone calls she’s been getting. When Duncan Harris, a British journalist, stops by to interview her for a series he’s writing, Ellie feels something close to hope that there’s still something good to be salvaged from her life. But, before that hope can be fulfilled, Ellie is kidnapped.

When Duncan finds out what has happened to Ellie, he throws his journalist’s neutrality out of the window and heads off to find her. What he finds is a cult led by a deluded but charismatic leader. Somehow, he has to get Ellie out of its clutches and he’ll do whatever it takes. When the cult leader raises the stakes, the mission becomes very personal indeed.

My thoughts:

Empty Places was such a fun, thrilling, and captivating story I read it more or less in one sitting, something which came as a very pleasant surprise.

One of the reasons I rarely read m/f these days, especially suspense, is because all too often the female lead can only be described as ‘too stupid to live’. And, if I’m honest I have to admit that the blurb worried me somewhat. Threatening phone calls leave lots of scope for less than advisable behaviour. Thankfully Ellie Freeman did not live up to the stereotype. She does everything right; contacts the authorities, keeps a record of the threats made against her, and even accepts a gun although she hates the things. None of which saves her from the inevitable, of course.

In fact, this story kept on surprising me in that it managed to avoid being predictable completely. For starters, while the leader of the cult taking Ellie captive was every bit as creepy and crazy as you’d expect such a character to be, most of the other people Ellie interacts with there were no such thing. I liked that even now that I’ve finished the book I still can’t decide whether Ellie or Duncan was the stronger character; the fact that they both had their strengths and their weaknesses made them truly relatable.

If I do have an ‘issue’ with this story it is that Ellie, for me at least, gave in too easily in the end.  I won’t say anything else since I don’t believe in spoilers, but personally I’d have let him suffer for at least a short while.

What struck me most about this book though is how exquisite the writing was. The sentences flow, the balance between thought, action, and description was just about perfect and the story read so smoothly I was surprised to have reached the end when I did. The author transported me first to that desert and then to the mountains. I suffered in the blistering heat, enjoyed the cooling rain, and could see the desolation.

Long story short: if you want to read a very well written, thrilling, sexy, and thoroughly entertaining m/f romance, look no further. Empty Places won’t disappoint!

About the author:

S A Laybourn lives in Wiltshire and loves it. She's partial to gin and tonic, loves to cook and watches cookery programmes when she's not working, writing or reading. She writes m/m erotic romance as S A Meade.

Sunday, 23 October 2016

Our Souls At Night by Kent Haruf

179 Pages
Bookclub read

The blurb:

This is a love story. 
A story about growing old with grace.
Addie Moore and Louis Waters have been neighbours for years. Now they both live alone, their houses empty of family, their quiet nights solitary. Then one evening Addie pays Louis a visit.
Their brave adventures form the beating heart of Our Souls at Night, Kent Haruf's exquisite final novel.

My thoughts:

This book was quite a reading experience for me. For starters, I didn’t realise how much I depend on quotation marks when I read, until they weren’t there. I got used to it, but the first few pages I kept on going back in confusion, wondering whether or not I’d just read spoken word.

I’m listening, Louis said.
I wonder if you would consider coming to my house sometimes to sleep with me.
What? How do you mean?
I mean we’re both alone. We’ve been by ourselves for too long. For years. I’m lonely. I think you might be too. I wonder if you would come and sleep in the night with me. And talk.

Confusing or not, it does make for an intriguing and thought-provoking start to what turned out to be a deeply touching story.

It is such a simple idea: ‘getting through the night together. And lying warm in bed, companionably.’  Because the nights are the worst. Because sometimes being alone is too much like hard work, too lonely. And also because the fact that you’ve reached the age of 70 doesn’t have to mean your life is over.

There’s a wonderful and refreshing honesty to the way these two characters talk to each other. At times if almost feel blunt, yet it isn’t. They don’t have time for all the pretty words without meaning anymore, and get to the core of what they feel and think with meaning to give offence or taking it that way.

Sentences and chapters are short, the story is told in few words. Which means that every words has to count, and it does. Without any detailed or spun out background information we get a clear idea about Louis and Addie, their lives before they started spending their nights together and the world they live in. I suspect that in the hands of almost any other author the scarcity of the words and details would have left me yearning for more. In this book it felt right. This story didn’t need elaboration any more than the conversations Addie and Louis have together did.

That’s the main point of this being a good time. Getting to know somebody well at this age. And finding out you like her and discovering you’re not just all dried up after all. – Louis

I love how they almost got to be a family for a while when Addie’s grandson Jamie comes to stay with her for most of the summer. When they get a dog for the six-year-old boy who is not dealing with his parent’s separation very well, it felt even more as if they were living an experience they’d had individually but would have been unlikely to have together under any other circumstances.

In one of their conversations, Louis and Addie discuss three books ‘someone’ has written about Holt—the town where they live—and discuss whether they themselves would like to be in a book by the author who wrote them. The subterfuge made me smile because they are of course talking about Benediction, Eventide and Plainsong by, who else, Kent Haruf.

At some point in the book Addie says: It’s a hopeful thing, isn’t it. And that is the reason most of this book resonated with me. It ties into to my favourite (George Eliot) quote ‘It’s never too late to be what you might have been.’ It is the idea that if we open ourselves up to the world around us and the people in it, there are always new opportunities, new avenues to explore. That is an attitude towards life I can get fully behind.

Which brings me to my one, big, ‘but’. I didn’t like the ending. It may be realistic (although I’m not even fully convinced about that) but it wasn’t good for me. It felt like the characters (or the author) lost their courage. I understood the motives but I didn’t like how it played out. Addie and Louis’s courage deserved so much more than the ending they got. In the last few chapters what had been a 5+, extra special read for me, turned into a very solid 4. However, don’t allow that personal sentiment to stop you from reading this book. For the most it is a hopeful, inspired and wonderful story about living your life to the full, regardless of your age, and embracing opportunities when they come your way.

Sunday, 16 October 2016

Between Us by F.E. Feeley Jr.

Pages: 48
Fantasy - Paranormal
Buy links:      Amazon         Amazon UK

The blurb:

When Jeremy, a tall, hunky, ladies man begins to explore his bisexual attractions, he realizes he loves his best friend and college roommate Roger. 

Roger secretly loves Jeremy back but is holding on to a secret of his own. A terrible one. 

On Halloween night both men are invited to a party where the truth of each other will be revealed in a horrific way. Will they survive a night of terror? Or will it rip them apart forever? 

My thoughts:

I don’t read (or watch) scary stories as a rule. I’m all for murder and mayhem, but horror… not so much most of the time. This blurb, however, intrigued me so I decided to overcome whatever preconceived reservations I might have and dive in.

The start of the story lulled me into a false sense of security. But the playful banter was soon replaced by the first apparition and the creepiness kicked off. As soon as it did I remembered why I so rarely read creepy stories; they make me feel too much. My stomach churns and I get jittery. It gets too much and I close the book only to open it again two minutes later because I HAVE to know what happens next, except that I don’t want to because NERVES, but I do because I can’t stand the tension of not knowing. LOL. It’s an experience I both love and try to avoid. And the more invested I am in a story the stronger those feelings become.

Yes, I did get quite invested in Between Us. Me, the self-confessed wimp who doesn’t deal well with either angst or tension, fully enjoyed the wonderfully torturous combination of romantic uncertainty and ghostly scariness. In fact, I was really impressed that the romance and ghost storylines in this book are perfectly balanced. All too often I’ve come across books in which one storyline ends up taking precedence at the expense of the other. Not in this book; romance and ghostliness play next to each other and one enhances the other.

I liked Jeremy and Roger, enjoyed the way they interacted, and I loved the premise of the story. While this is a fully formed story without an open ending, I would love to see more of them. And given what Roger’s secret is, and considering that he’s met and recognised Cindy (yes, I'm being vague on purpose), I could well see more spooky adventures for these two men. I would most definitely read them.

This was my first encounter with this author and I can safely say it won’t be my last. Between Us packed a whole lot of story into relatively few pages and did so very well. While I wouldn’t have minded more words, the story didn’t need them. If F.E. Feeley Jr can hook me this much in under fifty pages I can’t wait to find out what’ll happen when I pick up a full length novel.

Overall I highly recommend this book if you'd like to add more ghosts and romance to your Halloween.

About the author:

F.E. Feeley Jr was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan and lived there for twenty years before joining the military. He is a veteran of the US Armed Services; having done a tour in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2002-2003, he turned college student, pursuing a degree in political science. He now lives in Southeast Texas where he is married to the love of his life, John, and where they live with their five year old German Shepherd, Kaiser. 

As a young man, reading took center stage in his life, especially those novels about ghosts, witches, goblins, and all the other things that went bump in the night. His favorite authors include such writers as Stephen King, Dean Koontz, and Anne Rice, whose work allowed him to travel to far off places and meet fascinating and scary characters. As a gay man, he wishes to be able to write good fictional literature for those who love the genre and to write characters that readers can relate to. All in all, he is a cigarette smokin’, whiskey drinkin’, rock and roll lovin’, tattoo wearin’ dreamer of a man with a wonderful husband who puts up with his crap and lets him write his stories.

Fallen by Lia Mills

288 Pages
Book Club Read
Paperback / Own / Borrow Box

The blurb

Spring, 1915. Katie Crilly gets the news she dreaded: her beloved twin brother, Liam, has been killed on the Western Front.

A year later, when her home city of Dublin is suddenly engulfed by the violence of the Easter Rising, Katie finds herself torn by conflicting emotions and loyalties. Taking refuge in the home of a friend, she meets Hubie Wilson, a friend of Liam's from the Front. There unfolds a remarkable encounter between two young people, both wounded and both trying to imagine a new life.

My thoughts

This book was selected as the 2016 ‘One City One Book’ title for both Dublin and Belfast.

I’m feeling very ambivalent about this book. While there were parts of this story I loved and admired, more if it left me either indifferent or dissatisfied.

For me there was too much telling and nowhere near enough showing in this story. I know how devastating WW I was and how confusing the situation in Dublin during the Easter Rising must have been but that is as a result of prior knowledge, not because I experienced those nightmares while reading this book. More than that, even Katie’s story remained distant for me, as if I was observing her story through a filter. I had to imagine her feelings rather than experience them.

The first part of the book especially didn’t do a lot for me. It was easy enough to read but I didn’t connect with either Katie or her story. In fact, it was almost as if I was reading an article rather than a novel. Soon after the second part of the story (and the Easter Rising) starts, the story became more engaging. As Katie connects with Hubie and finds herself caught up in the Rising in ways she couldn’t have imagined, I, at last, got an idea of the person she really was. Then again, I think the same was true for Katie herself, so I’m fairly sure I wasn’t meant to really see her or connect with her earlier on in the story; how can you know someone who doesn’t know themselves? As such the difference between the two parts in this book was a clever and well executed plot device—just not one I’m overly fond of since I prefer to connect with my characters early on in a story.

The letters Liam wrote to Katie before he died really touched me, though. The raw emotion and the combination of despair and resignation were so vivid they made my stomach churn. And the developing bond between Katie and Hubie sprung of the page too. Thrown together under extreme circumstances, and with Hubie relatively fresh back from the Western Front they bounce off each other, are brutally honest and, as a result, becoming very close in record time and with, for those days especially, shocking levels of intimacy. Those parts of the story felt real to me.

And another thing I don’t particularly like is a story without a proper ending. Maybe it’s the result of my love for romance and crime novels; those come with either a happy ever after or a resolution of the mystery. This book ended mid everything. The Easter Rising is still going on, be it nearing its end, and Katie doesn’t decide what to do next. If that is what makes a story literature, I can do without it. As much as I like to occasionally indulge in what-if scenarios taking place after a story ends, even for those I need a proper ending to embroider on from.

All in all this was a mixed reading experience for me. This book was easy to read; maybe too easy considering all the subjects it deals with. While most of it left me indifferent, some parts touched me deeply. Right now the best I can say for this book is that I suspect it will make for a good discussion when my bookclub meets next. I’d rate this book 3.5 stars but for once I’m rounding it down rather than up; I just don’t think it is a 4.

Friday, 14 October 2016

The Rancher's Son (Montana #2) - RJ Scott

Author: RJ Scott

Cover Design: Meredith Russell

Length: 66,200 words



A man without memories, and the cop who never gave up hope. 

When he wakes up in hospital, the victim of a brutal beating, John Doe, has no memories of who he is or who hurt him. The cops can find nothing to identify him and he can't remember anything to help... except the name Ethan and one recurring place from his dreams. Three words, and they're not much, but it's a start. Crooked Tree Ranch. 

Cop, Ethan Allens has never stopped searching for his brother and his brother's best friend who vanished. When a report lands on Ethan's desk that may give new leads he jumps at the chance to follow them up. The man he finds isn't his brother, but it's someone who could maybe help him discover what happened ten years ago. 

What neither man can know is that facing the very real demons of the past could very well destroy any kind of future they may think they have together. 

My Thoughts:

I adored this book. If there is such a thing as the perfect combination of angst and relief, The Ranger’s Son had it for me. There’s so much hurt in this story. There’s Ethan who’s been searching for his Justin, his younger brother, and Adam for twelve years, refusing to believe they’re dead despite never finding a trace of them or a clue as to what might have happened all that time ago. The emotional rollercoaster he embarks on when he finds Adam, the man he professed his love to as a seventeen year old, is stunning. The joy of finding Adam and the frustration and fear when he discovers Adam has lost his memories and can’t provide him with any answers about his brother are in stark contrast to each other.

Adam—sigh. My heart bled for him from the moment he was introduced. He is such a wonderful combination of fragile and determined he took my breath away. I loved being able to follow his journey, even if it was heartbreaking at times.

I was delighted to visit Crooked Tree Ranch again and have an opportunity to catch up with all the characters I’d fallen for in the first book. But the best part of this book for me was watching Ethan and Adam finding each other again, to see their love for each other still pulling them together, despite twelve years and despite lost memories.

This is a quiet sorta romance. The tension isn’t found in a ‘will they – won’t they’ scenario but in the unraveling of what happened in the past and what, if any, dangers it poses for the present and future. I adored Adam and Ethan, I adored their story and I adored the way it was told. It doesn’t get much better than that. To say I’m ready for the next book, A Cowboy’s Home, would be a gross understatement.

On a final note; I’ve got a feeling this may well be one of the most quoted sentences in the genre, and rightly so. It put a huge smile to my face.

“You mean I’m healing you with my magic penis” - Ethan

But, if I’m going to share that quote, I’ve got to include the following sentence as well; you can’t have one without the other.

“Who needs romance when they have access to a magic penis.” - Adam

Author Bio:

RJ Scott is the bestselling gay romance author of over ninety MM romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn't with family either reading or writing. 

RJ also writes MF romance under the name Rozenn Scott.

The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn't like it one little bit, and she has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.


Website        Facebook       Goodreads     Twitter         Librarything


Monday, 10 October 2016

Breaking Hell's Rules by Lyssa Dering – Release Day Blitz

Author: Lyssa Dering

Length: 25,000 words


Freedom wasn't supposed to be this dangerous...

When succubus Reth finally meets their soul quota and gains freedom from Hell, they decide to take up residence in New Orleans. Immediately they discard the body they've been wearing since 1952 and slip into something a little more virile, pleased to find they get a cozy apartment for their trouble. Too bad the apartment has a joint lease with their body's ex-boyfriend Jude.

Jude is walking around with a black eye and a bad attitude, and when Reth tries to explain things, Jude doesn't believe them. Plus, he refuses to move out. Reth doesn't want to take Jude's soul, and they really like this body. So they show him some succubus action minus the soul-grabbing, hoping to scare him off.

But they never expected for the mortal to take a liking to them. And they never could have predicted just how pure Jude's soul would be. When Reth unwittingly commits a sin against Lucifer, they'll need Jude's help to avoid an eternity of suffering... For them both.


The room was thick with tension, but Jude was feeling reckless. He set the cards back on the table and came up to Reth's back, pressing his lips to the top of his spine. When Reth didn't tell him no, he settled his hands tentatively on his hips.
Reth turned his head, looking at Jude over his shoulder. When he next spoke, it was in a near-whisper. "I already told you this wasn't a good idea."
"I'm just..." He sighed. He didn't know what he was doing. He'd never touch a stranger like this, or someone he'd only rubbed up against once. He stepped back, shoving his hands into the pockets of his sweats. "Sorry. This is stressful. Everything is stressful."
"I understand." Reth turned around, abandoning his cabinet search for alcohol. He averted his eyes but then focused them back on Jude. "I need you to do something for me, even though you're stressed."
"Don't tell anyone what I've told you. About what I am. About what you saw."
Jude couldn't help but laugh. Who would he tell, anyway? His mom? She didn't need to hear about his love life, especially when it was a mess. She'd taken a couple of years to be okay with him being queer, but demons? That would take her years to get comfortable with. And his best friend Brett was always traveling for work and wasn't great at long distance communication. "They'd think I was crazy."
"Good. Actually, it might be better if I left. And you could pretend Tyler ran out on you."
The mention of Tyler pinched Jude's chest. "He did run out on me. Basically."
"Perfect." Reth tried to leave the room, but Jude grabbed his fingers.
"Hey, wait. What's going on? You can tell me." Reth stilled but didn't say anything. "We already decided that you were staying, that you were going to help me with the rent. Just tell me what's going on so we can handle it."
Several strained seconds passed in which neither of them moved. Then Reth turned around and pulled Jude into a searing kiss.

Author Bio

Lyssa Dering is an author of queer erotic romance. She writes about damaged characters in impossible situations who, despite often horrifying struggles, will always get their happy ending.

Twitter         Goodreads     Pinterest       Facebook       Website