PROMO: Skythane

Promo

Skythane - J. Scott Coatsworth

J. Scott Coatsworth has a new queer sci fi book out, Liminal Sky: Oberon Cycle Book 1: “Skythane.”

Jameson Havercamp, a psych from a conservative religious colony, has come to Oberon—unique among the Common Worlds—in search of a rare substance called pith. He’s guided through the wilds on his quest by Xander Kinnson, a handsome, cocky skythane with a troubled past.

Neither knows that Oberon is facing imminent destruction. Even as the world starts to fall apart around them, they have no idea what’s coming—or the bond that will develop between them as they race to avert a cataclysm.

Together, they will journey to uncover the secrets of this strange and singular world, even as it takes them beyond the bounds of reality itself to discover what truly binds them.

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Giveaway

Scott is giving away your choice of a $25 Amazon Gift Certificate or a signed first edition of the Liminal Sky: Ariadne Cycle Trilogy (USA only). Enter via Rafflecopter:

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Excerpt

Skythane Meme

Prologue

And we fairies, that do run

By the triple Hecate’s team,

From the presence of the sun,

Following darkness like a dream.

–William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Quince sat at her desk by the window of her flat, staring off into the distance through the floor-to-ceiling plas window.

Outside, the storm was coming. It had roared out of the Pyramus Mountains that morning, causing flooding all the way down to the Gildensea, and now the vast tempest was approaching Oberon City. The angry purple clouds stretched up to at least 30,000 feet above sea level, and great multiforked lightning bolts lanced down from the sky.

She was tired of everything—the city, the attitudes. A winged skythane woman among all these wingless lander men.

The streetscape of the city lay spread out below her, thousands of amber lights running in strings along the main roadways where the ground transportation rumbled among the mostly industrial buildings.

In the distance beneath the clouds, she could just make out the blue shadow of the Pyramus Mountains, their peaks a sharp-toothed wall of darkness along the eastern edge of the world. Above them, in a break in the clouds, the stars swam in the deepest night, thickest overhead.

Neither Hermia nor Lysander, Oberon’s two moons, was up to challenge the stellar dominance of the night sky. Somewhere out there, Titan Station tracked slowly across the heavens.

She watched it all from her small apartment, perched halfway up one of Oberon’s great arcos—ten two-hundred-story residential-commercial habitats that housed most of the population of the city.

In her mind’s eye, she could see the waters of the Argent Sea on another world, lapping at the rocks far below her bedroom window, half a lifetime ago.

She closed her eyes and remembered the day it had all begun.

Quince was all alone in the forest just outside Ballifor, searching for hoarberries to take back home to her uncle’s house. She walked under the great redoak trees, the sunlight filtering pink through the branches and leafy canopies down to the forest floor.

Something cracked behind her, and she spun around, catching her foot on a root and falling hard to the ground. When she looked up, winded by the fall, the most beautiful creature stood there, looking down on her.

It was a nimfeach. She… or was it a he? It, she decided. It looked like a luminescent butterfly as tall as a human being, its gossamer wings trailing off into a shower of soft sparks, golden in the darkness under the trees. Its features were humanoid, but its eyes were far larger, and its face was heart shaped.

The nimfeach had existed here for as long as humanity. There were legends about them going back to the first skythane settlers. Some said they brought luck; others that they were tricksters.

Quince was unafraid. She stood and approached the creature. Its large eyes regarded her with what she could only interpret as curiosity.

It held out a glowing hand with three fingers, and she lifted up her own so that they met.

Quince.

She nodded.

I have come to find you.

Quince broke contact, surprised. How could such a beautiful creature know someone as lowly as she, let alone want to speak with her?

The voice persisted. There is a task we must ask you to perform. It will not be easy, and it will profoundly change your life.

Quince considered. Her life was dull beyond words, living here in a small village away from Gaelan and the Court. Maybe it was time it changed for the better. She nodded. “What do you want me to do?”

The creature smiled, and Quince was flooded with warmth. When the Queen of the Gaelani calls for you, you must go. She has borne a child….

Shortly after, she had been summoned by the Queen. Apparently Robyn had gotten a visitor too.

A loud crack of thunder startled her out of her reverie. She had been so young then. Sometimes she felt she’d lived a century in these past twenty-five years.

These storms had grown worse these last few months. Her time here was growing short.

The last message from Robyn had arrived in a tube tied to the scaled leg of an imprean along with a vial of pith, a delivery method so antiquated it made her smile.

The news inside had not.

The King was dead. Whether by natural causes or the machinations of the invaders, it wasn’t clear. But what was clear was that their quarter-century wait was at an end.

Coincidental or not, the crisis they had anticipated was upon them.

With luck, they would be reunited soon, and the years-long occupation of Gaelan would come to an end. All their carefully laid plans were coming to fruition at last, but there were so many things that could still go wrong.

She tapped the side of her head, activating her cirq. “Ari, where is Davyn?” she asked quietly. It had taken Quince a long time to get used to the tech of the Common Worlds, so different from how simple things had been back home, so inherently invasive, and yet, so convenient.

Her personal assistant responded immediately. “Xander is at home. All vital signs seem normal, though he does appear to be in a state of some excitement.” The voice was warm and professional.

Quince chuckled. I’ll bet he is. “And Lyrin?” He’s finally coming home.

This time it took longer.

While she waited, Quince went over her contingency plans. She had to get the two of them together, and soon. The fate of both worlds depended on it.

She recited Elyra’s prophecy—written seven hundred and fifty years before—that she had long ago committed to memory:

Tempest comes with clash and thunder,

Skies alight with rainbow’s blood,

When the sunlight runs to red,

Comes the reaper for the dead.

One with wings as black as night

One with wings of golden light

Spin the worlds back into one

To save them from the murdering sun.

It looked like the end time was finally here.

Ari broke into her reverie. “Jameson is on approach—he has arrived at Titan Station and is expected in Oberon City by shuttle this afternoon at 13:20.”

“Thank you, Ari.” Everyone said personal assistants were just bioware, that they had no true feelings, but it cost her nothing to be polite. One never knew.

“You’re welcome, Quince.” Ari sounded satisfied.

Quince closed her eyes and sat back, thinking about all the things that could’ve gone wrong up to this point. Thinking about Robyn with her long dark hair, her eyes alight with mischief….

She shook her head. This was no time for fanciful daydreams. “Ari, access protocol ‘clear screen.’”

There was a slight pause. “Are you sure?”

“Yes, I’m sure. Please run the protocol.”

“Running protocol ‘clear screen.’”

In five minutes, all record of her time here would be erased from Oberon’s grid. Even in the virtual jungle, it was best to cover one’s tracks.

She stared off toward the edge of Oberon City for a moment longer. Beneath the approaching storm, the neat, geometric lines of the city scrambled and snarled in the Slander, where the Syndicate held sway.

Quince stood and took one last look around the small, sparsely furnished room. It wasn’t much. She had chosen it mostly for the view, which had astonished her when she had first arrived in this thriving, decadent metropolis so many years before. The room held a bed, a small writing desk by the window, and a couple chairs.

There was an open carry sack on the mattress, filled with the few possessions she cared to take with her.

The apartment was impersonal, and yet it had been hers for these twenty-five long years.

She closed her eyes. She was tired of fighting. So tired. She sighed, resigned to the fact that her life was about to change once again, but soon enough it would all be over.

She checked the contents of her carry sack once more, then ran her hand over the edge of the bag to seal it seamlessly. She snapped the straps over her shoulders, letting the sack rest between her white-feathered wings.

She closed the door closed behind her, leaving the place empty.

As if she had never been there at all.


Author Bio

J. Scott Coatsworth

Scott lives with his husband Mark in a yellow bungalow in Sacramento. He was indoctrinated into fantasy and sci fi by his mother at the tender age of nine. He devoured her library, but as he grew up, he wondered where all the people like him were.

He decided that if there weren’t queer characters in his favorite genres, he would remake them to his own ends.

A Rainbow Award winning author, he runs Queer Sci Fi, QueeRomance Ink, and Other Worlds Ink with Mark, sites that celebrate fiction reflecting queer reality, and is a full member member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA).

Author Website: https://www.jscottcoatsworth.com

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Author Liminal Fiction (LimFic.com): https://www.limfic.com/mbm-book-author/j-scott-coatsworth/

Author Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/J.-Scott-Coatsworth/e/B011AFO4OQ

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PROMO: Prince Ivan, A. Wolfe, & A Firebird

Promo, Uncategorized

Prince Ivan, A. Wolfe & A Firebird - Eric Alan Westfall

Eric Alan Westfall has a new queer fairy tale out: Prince Ivan, “A. Wolfe & A Firebird.” And there’s a giveaway!

Dear Reader,

What do you get when you combine a greedy Great Tsar, his two cheating, bullying older sons, his youngest esser (shh! no saying that aloud) son, stolen gold apples, a Firebird quest, A. Wolfe who has the power t’assume a pleasing shape, a magickal sandstorm, as well as two bands and a full Symphony of Gipsumies?

A rollicking, roisterous Russian Fairy Tale, with vigorous esser activities in tents, halls, bedrooms and alcoves, with and without the assistance of PSTs. Plus princely parades, a duel over Gus, new lyrics to an old drinking song, and the possibility of bits of blood, gobs of gore or moments of mayhem. As required by CORA (the Code of RFT Authors), should these occur, your author will give you timely warning.

Ah. Still not ready to part with your kopek-equivalent? Consider the fun you’ll have reading chapters like:

  • “To Kvetch, Or Not To Kvetch? A Reader’s Choice”
  • “Ivan Has A Close Encounter Of The F-Word Kind”
  • “Second Direction Questers vs. The Caliph’s Sayer Of Sooths”
  • “Will Sasha Succeed In Seducing Prince Ivan?”
  • Bad Prince Ivan! No Touch Cage!”
  • “A Travel Pause For Gratuitous Sex In The Tent—Which Does Not Advance The Plot—At The Insistence Of The Characters”
  • “A Necessary Interlude To Consider The Age-Old Questing Question: What The [Expletive Of Your Choice, Dear Reader] Do We Do Next?”

If you buy it and try it, you’ll like it, or so says your most talen…er…humble author.

p.s. If Karrie Jax and I have covered you and blurbed you to buy, look for “Dear Reader, Along The Way, Did You Happen To See The Allusion To Olivier?” in the TOC. It’s a spot-the-allusions chance at gift cards of $25, $15, or $10.

166,000 words of story fun and frolic, plus a 2160-word teaser from another MM fairytale: The Tinderbox.

Amazon | Smashwords | Universal Buy Link


Giveaway

Eric is giving away a $20 Amazon gift card with this tour. Enter via rafflecopter:

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Excerpt

Prince Ivan, A Wolfe & A Firebird meme

IVAN PUTS HIS HORSE AT RISK, AND MEETS A. WOLFE

“A wolf who talks,” Ivan said, his voice all full of surprise.

“I am not a wolf, Prince Ivan, I am A. Wolfe.”

Ivan lifted an eyebrow, in his long-perfected “inquiring princes want to know what you mean” mode, while wondering what effect it might have on such an enormous beast. Well, not a beast, exactly, since it could talk.

No reaction, except the bright gold eyes—so like one of his father’s apples, well-polished after plucking, or the gold circles in the Firebird’s tail—stared back, unblinking.

Since his eyebrow inquiry failed to a verbal response, it was Ivan’s turn to talk. Politeness had worked with the Firebird, when used in place of “I am royal, hear me roar” arrogance, and might be best for Ivan’s well-being in the current situation, conversing with a wolf, the top of whose head was above Gus’ shoulder.

“‘A wolf who talks,’” yes. My exact words, Sir Wolf.”

The wolf opened his mouth. Wide. No mere flash this time. Ivan was fully fanged. As they had only just met, he could not tell whether he was being fang-grinned for a reason he could not fathom, or fierce-fanged to frighten him. If it was the latter, there was a glimmer of starting-to-work happening.

But the wolf’s voice was neither fierce nor fun-filled when he hid most of his fangs and talked again. His tone was a goblet of great size, filled not just to the brim but overflowing—with more coming from somewhere so the over kept on flowing—with…patience. The kind of patience you use for, with, and on, those who are not very bright. Indeed, those who are so dim that if their brains were used to provide light for reading at night they’d be as effective as an inch-tall stub of a quarter-inch wide candle, set in a candlestick in the bowels of a cavern on the far side of a mountain range five-and-a-half eighths of a continent away.

“When you bathe, do you clean your ears, Prince Ivan?” [See above for how he said it.]

“Uh…what?”

A sigh was heard.

Ivan wished he’d brought along a sigh that big, but then, since it was a large wolf letting it loose, accompanied by, Ivan was almost sure, a hint of a scent of pasta, pesto, garlic and butter, Ivan might not have been able to use it with the same effect. The sigh might almost have been designed to complement the show-patience-to-the-afflicted voice.

“Do. You. Clean—”

“I heard you the first time, Sir Wolf. I just don’t understa—”

It was the wolf’s turn to interrupt. “It’s clear you don’t understand, young prince. I was trying to ascertain whether your inability to understand plain Russian was based on a physical defect—stuffed ears, whether unclean or for another reason, bad hearing, something of that sort—and if not, on some mental lack which in theory requires me to be considerate and gentle.”

There was a tiny pause, so infinitesimal Ivan would have had no chance to get a syllable of a word in edgewise, sidewise, upwise, or downwise, even had he tried. “You do understand kindness and gentleness are not traits associated with a wolf, and especially not A. Wolfe?”

At the end of this series of insults, the Great Tsar would have raged, calling on his ever-present Imperial Guards to “Rid me of this wolf!”

Anatol would have ranted about the presumptuousness of peasants who did not know or stay in their proper place, probably forgetting who had just offended his sense of propriety.

Vlad would have grabbed his sword, and whether from horseback, or following a grandiose leap to the ground which displayed his awesome athleticism for the admiration of any viewers lurking in the vicinity—it was his policy to always act as if he was being viewed with admiration—would have started hewing and hacking away.

In part because Ivan suspected the outcome would have been the same with all three of those scenes—dead soldiers, dead royal family, likely including bystander youngest prince—Ivan chose the fourth door…and laughed.

He couldn’t say why he saw—thought he saw—a twinkle of humor in the great golden eyes. But he must have been right, because the wolf didn’t leap up, all howling, growling and slavering, and drag him off Gus before doing the devouring which would logically follow offending laughter.

Ivan forced a halt to his own humor. With gasps interrupting his initial words, he said, “My apologies, Sir Wolf. I was not laughing at you. It was an image in my head of my family’s reactions to your words, and yours to theirs. However, with all the respect to which you are entitled, which seems to be at least a reasonable amount”—Ivan was willing to be reasonable, but not obsequious—“I have no mental or physical defect which interferes with my hearing or my understanding. Perhaps the, ah, flaw lies in your explanation of what you mean? Or, you might consider, the lack of one?”

Ivan gave the wolf a princely grin of satisfaction with his response.

Wolfe gave the prince back a wolfeish huff. “I’ll entertain the possibility you might be right, if you’ll entertain the possibility you are not listening as well as you should.”

Ivan nodded.

“Very well. Repeat after me, ‘A wolf is not the same as A. Wolfe.’”

“A wolf is not the same as a wolf.”

Wolfe sighed again. He apparently had an inexhaustible supply, in a wide range of sizes.

“A wolf is an animal, Prince Ivan. It resembles me, but is far smaller, roams the forest, howls from time to time for various reasons, and at times for no reason at all. Perhaps because it doesn’t reason. I am a wolfe—with an ‘e’ at the end. Which means I have magickal skills. My name is: A…full stop…Wolfe.”

Ivan grinned again. “Your first name is Afullstop? What an unusual name. Not Russian, is it?”

No. Not an ‘uh’ sound, but a long a-sound, which rhym… You’re teasing.”

Ivan learned another lesson in wolfe-prince relations. A wolf-with-an-e-at-the-end could grin, without his fangs looking all fearsome.

Ivan widened his own grin. “I am. So what does long-A stand for?”

“Aleksandr.”

“A handsome name for a handsome wolf-with-an-e.”

Ivan paused. He shouldn’t, he really shouldn’t, but he decided he would, anyway. “Sir Wolfe, now that I know your name is A. Wolfe, and since we are being so precise with our pronunciations, are you really quite certain I shouldn’t call you ‘A. Wolfie?’ To be sure the final ‘e’ gets its just and proper due?”

Ah. So that’s what a Wolfeish glare looked like with a fillip of fang.


UNIQUE CONTENT!

A Pause to Provide a Reassuring Response for the Horse Kvetchers in the Crowd

The author extends his apologies, dear reader, for this interruption. But the kvetchers in the crowd, whinging on and on about the horses, are a probable distraction for other readers who, unlike you, are incapable of fully focusing on the tale while extraneous noise is being made. So, if you will be so kind as to bear wi—

The horses belonging to the princes. As you will recall, the horses were…

Oh. You don’t.

Ah.

Well, in that case, this interruption will serve as a reminder for those who perhaps don’t care as much as they should about tales which seem to include the abandonment of two fine animals to an unknown, and potentially dire fate, given the RFTness going on. This will also be a reassurance for those more vocal in their concerns over the possibility of off-page horse endangerment.

As it so happened—and as you know, you may trust the author to true-tell all this tale’s events occurring on and off the pages—not long after the brothers were swept up and swirled away by the sandst…

No. There has not been a precise allocation of the passage of a particular amount of time sufficient to serve as a definition of “not long.” Suffice it to say—and with all the authorial respect appropriately due to the kvetchers in the crowd, when this author decides something sufficeth, more than a mere sufficiency of sufficing has thereby been accomplished—the not-longness was not short enough to make subsequent events even more improbable than they already are because of the fairy taleness occurring, but also not long enough for the horses to experience more the mildest need for something to eat or drink.

If the author may now proceed?

Thank you.

As the author was saying, not long after the brothers were swept up and swirled away by the sandstorm, a band of Gipsumies happened by.

A happenstance of any form, of course, is by its very nature naturally nothing more than an alternative form of coincidence, but one which carries with it far less sheerness.

The Gipsumies—sometimes referred to by the ignorant as Roaminies, which they find offensive—were experienced travelers and well aware they were well beyond the far edge of All The Russias in the third direction.

Their band arrived at the site of the happenstance—the location of two saddled, bridled, Imperial warhorses—with all its instruments in tune, and being played with vigor, especially the violins, and with the men, women, and other genders, dancing with spectacular (of the non-Russian-axe variety) leaps and bounds, swirls and twirls and intricate steps. The perfect-pitch singers sang a series of songs during the course of the happening-by arrival, with also-perfect timing so they all finished simultaneously with a final stamp of the dancers’ feet, and a long-lasting high or low note from the singers.

No. There is no definition of how long the last notes lasted.

Great Tsar’s War Hammer, as named by Vlad—the horse much preferred his actual name, Nikki, but he answered to the other one because he had no choice—had seen a Gipsumy arrival before in Moscow and was impressed. Unaware this was only a rehearsal, he rose a bit on his back legs, and slammed his front feet down, giving them his stamp of approval.

Gleb, who answered to Anatol’s choice of Imperial Storm Racer, had seen that Moscow arrival alongside Nikki, but was less impressed with this one. He gave it only a modest half-stamp of a left foreleg of approval.

Rehearsal and arrival complete, the members of the band swiftly put their instruments away, stripped off their costumes and handed them over to the cleaners, and donned working garb in dull, drab colors, designed to make them easily overlookable in civilized circumstances. That done, the pre-selected men and women—it was the other genders’ turn for a day off from this task—spread out to investigate this most excellent finding in many a happening-by.

What the surroundings said to the Gipsumy investigators in subtle signs was threefold.

First fold, “There’s no one anywhere around who might claim to be the owner of the horses.”

Second fold, “There are some owner-type footsteps leading from the horses to the edge of the desert, but there are no steps indicating an owner’s desire to return to two valuable horses before anyone happens upon them and concludes they were abandoned. There are no signs of steps to the right of the desert line, nor steps to the left, or steps out into the desert. Therefore, the only conclusion to a reasonable degree of Gipsumy investigatorial certainty, is that the owners stepped out onto the sand and were likely sucked down.” (One lithe, elegant, more fey than the Fae, Gipsumy man sighed at the thought of such a sad ending to a sucking.)

Third fold, “Inasmuch as horse abandonment is a clear sign of intent to relinquish ownership thereof to anyone who thereafter happens by, and we, having thereafter happened by, it unquestionably follows the horses, and everything on them, are ours.”

Experienced in avoiding ownership confusions caused by returning persons denying horsical abandonment, the members of the band took the time for a brief meal and taking care of those needs which cannot be mentioned. After hitching Nikki and Gleb to the back of the chief’s caravan, and storing the saddles, bridles, saddlebags, and everything else in secret compartments scattered throughout the rest of the band’s caravans, they left the scene of the happenstance.

Some time later—

No!

they reached actual civilization, and thanks in part to the parchment provenance carefully crafted on the way, the Gipsumies made a more than healthy profit off an investment of the few rubles spent keeping the horses healthy and happy on the journey.

As paid-up members of GAPCHBOP—the Gipsumy Association for the Prevention of Cruelty to Happened-By Beasts and Other Property—this band took more than the minimum amount of time mandated by GAPCHBOP rules to ensure that the new owner of both horses would treat them with love, care, and good food, water and grooming.

The author adds his personal assurances that many years after the events in this tale were concluded, Nikki and Gleb died of comfortable old age, surrounded by several herds’ worth of horsical friends, acquaintances and a great many descendants, the pair having been most active in their post-prince years.

Moving along, dear readers, moving along…


Author Bio

Eric Alan Westfall

Eric is an American Midwesterner, and as Lady Glenhaven might say, “He’s old enough to have sailed with Noah.” In the real world he writes for a living, with those who would claim what he writes is fiction. His partner of thirty years—who died unexpectedly in 1995—enthusiastically encouraged him to try to get his writing published (mostly poetry back then, plus some short stories), but he didn’t have the guts to do so until 2013. At this point he’s not sure which was officially first, The Song, or Like a Mountain, Waiting.

Starting then, he’s published 13 novels and novellas, 1 poetry collection, 2 short story collections, and 3 short stories. God willin’ and the crick don’t rise, 2020 will also see The Tinderbox out and about. But since real life is, as we all know, a pain in the (anatomical site of your choice)…no guarantees.

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PROMO: The Qinali Virus

Promo

The Qinali VirusValerie J. Mikles has a new queer sci fi book out: “The Qinali Virus.”

Rage. Poverty. Disease.

They’re gone. Every last one.

The cost was great. The population has been devastated. But for the survivors, utopia has arrived.

Then the suspicious death of a young person forces Amber to question her world like she never has before. The Contentedness Council is after her, determined to protect their perfect society. Now Amber must unbury her city’s repressed past, expose the crimes that led to their utopia, and find a way to stop the Council from killing the world… again.

Join astral-projecting asexual Amber and her telepathic sister as they fight to save the human race from extermination!

Get It on Amazon


Excerpt

The Qinali Virus MemeJenise gasped. “Don’t do it.”

“Don’t call for help?” Amber asked, setting the tablet aside. “This is an astral injury. Maybe someone back home can help you.”

“No, please,” Jenise whimpered.

Amber felt her body vibrating and heard a ringing in her ears. The world became hazy and she saw her physical body collapsed on the ground. She hadn’t moved, and when she reached to the side, her hands passed through everything. This was how her book had described the astral plane.

“I did it! I’m here,” she squealed. Then she saw Jenise lying on the ground. A needle-like splinter pierced Jenise’s brain, and her aura seemed to ooze from the wound.

“Oh, this… this is bad…” Amber stammered, gathering the oozing essence back toward Jenise. Her hand went right through the glowing ooze and Jenise’s body. “How can I help you if I can’t touch you? What did the book say?”

“She’s coming for me,” Jenise murmured. Her physical form twitched, the red welts spreading as the needle dug deeper into her brain. Amber tried to clamp Jenise’s chin, but Jenise’s body passed through hers, so she grabbed the needle, and suddenly Jenise went still. She saw the needle because Jenise had described the needle. It was a manifestation of an injury; not a physical injury.

“I can manipulate a manifestation,” Amber murmured. Moving gingerly, Amber extracted the needle from her sister’s brain, and Jenise started to scream.

“Do you want me to stop?” Amber asked. Jenise kept screaming, oblivious to the question.

Gritting her teeth, Amber removed more of the needle, and her sister’s essence gushed from the wound. Amber blew gently on the oozing liquid and it seemed to dissolve into her sister’s skin. Once the needle was out, she molded her hands around her sister’s head, trying to close the wound. Her hands kept passing through Jenise’s skull, making her twitch. Amber didn’t like astral surgery, and she hoped she was helping.

“They’re coming,” Jenise murmured, her hands flailing, passing through Amber’s astral body. She felt her form vibrate and a ringing sound filled her ears.

“No. No, I’m not finished!” Amber cried, feeling an anchor pulling her back to her physical form. She curled into a fetal position, fighting to get back to the astral plane.

Jenise rolled onto her side and spooned behind Amber. “We have to run,” she rasped. “Someone’s coming.”

“Who? Is it Parey? Someone from the Council?” Amber asked. Amber heard the truck now, its wheels crushing the dirt and gravel as it came down the road from Highmere.

“I can’t tell,” Jenise rasped. “Don’t give up, Amber. Don’t go back.”

Amber sensed Jenise’s urgency, but when she saw the truck, she felt relieved. Running meant more isolation and uncertainty. What if Jenise wasn’t really better? Going back to Highmere made sense.

“Let’s go home,” Amber said. “You were scared, Jenise. We were scared. We can say… I don’t know. They’ll give us counseling and then we can go back to our lives.”

“I don’t want to go to brainwashing therapy,” Jenise said.

“Stop calling it that,” Amber explained.

“You don’t even know, do you?” Jenise said. “You don’t remember how you were before Cenn died. What “therapy” did to you.”

“It helped,” Amber insisted, looking hopefully at the truck ambling toward them. “I was a mess. I needed to be able to talk to someone without dumping it on all of you.”

“But you stopped feeling,” Jenise argued. “Not just the grief; you stopped feeling joy. You used to make twittering noises when you read books. You used to get so excited about things that Cenn had to sit you down so you wouldn’t pass out.”

“I’ll be fine. I’ll be calm,” Amber said, fighting for a reason to trust her people. “They want the tablet with Chenna’s research. That’s all this is. A misunderstanding.”

“I was almost misunderstood to death!” Jenise cried, kicking at Amber, and rolling out of reach.

“Jenise, unless you can move, we can’t outrun them,” Amber said. “I am not leaving without you. I—oh, no.”

The stress of the argument made her dizzy and she dropped to her knees. A moment later, she was standing by the road, watching the truck roll by. Her voice caught in her throat, but she didn’t need to call out. The husky man in the passenger seat saw her and hollered, and the truck screeched to a stop. She recognized him from the Council—Tobin Wauld.

“I know we’re not supposed to be here. We’re scared. Can you take us home?” she asked. The weight of fear lifted for a moment, but then Wauld hoisted himself out the window, and drew a long-barreled weapon.

“Well, well, Discontent Delouise. This was too easy,” he smirked.

Amber’s lips quivered and her legs froze. She’d never seen a weapon like that in Highmere, but she’d seen them in that zombie movie. Run, you idiot, her brain shouted. She’d muttered it at the characters in the movies often enough.

He shot Amber with an orange-tipped weapon as he stalked past. She felt the sting of the puncture and a thin stream of liquid dripping into her astral form.

“Tobin, you shot her!” his companion cried.

“We came with tranqs for a reason. We don’t have time to argue with discontents,” Wauld said.

Amber still couldn’t believe a councilperson had shot her. Pretending to faint, she turned and dropped, rolling down the embankment. The moment the truck was out of sight, she willed herself back to her physical body.

“How’d it go?” Jenise asked.

“They shot me,” Amber said. Her whole body was trembling from adrenaline and she could feel the spread of the tranquilizer dart pushing against it.

“Misunderstanding?” Jenise taunted.

“Oh, no. Very clear,” Amber said, blinking away the spots in her vision. She had never experienced violence in Highmere, and she didn’t even know her people had dart guns. The feelings of shock and betrayal hit her in waves, as did a profound sense of loss. This wasn’t a short camping trip that ended with a meek return home anymore.


Author Bio

The Qinali Virus - Valerie J MiklesValerie loves dancing, writing, astronomy, sci-fi, and grapes. She’s agender, aromantic, and asexual, and even though her labels describe many things she is not, her motto in life is “I can be everything I want, just not all at the same time.”

Although she has yet to get paid to eat grapes, she was delighted to learn that people would pay her to study black holes, and spent much of her twenties as a black hole hunter. She was rewarded with an astronomy PhD, which promptly inspired her to move to L.A. to be a screenwriter. How she ended up working on weather satellites for NOAA, we may never know.

Her passion for story-telling extends back to before she could write, and in fall 2017, she achieved a life dream and published her first book, “The Disappeared.” Valerie currently has six books published in her New Dawn series You can learn more about Valerie’s books on her website: http://www.valeriejmikles.com

An asexual activist, Valerie has written and produced a series of comedic short films featuring asexual characters. You can watch her films online at: http://www.aces-sitcom.com. Her third book ‘Trade Circle’ features an asexual protagonist, and interestingly, she created this character before she even knew there was a word to describe it. She is super-excited about the release of the Qinali Virus, featuring an asexual, aromantic astronomer (and a weather satellite for good measure).

Author Website: http://www.valeriejmikles.com

Author Facebook (Author Page): http://www.facebook.com/vjmikles

Author Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/valeriebean

Author Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16941635.Valerie_J_Mikles

Author Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Valerie-J-Mikles/e/B074K2QCHG

Author LibraryThing: https://www.librarything.com/author/miklesvaleriej

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PROMO: Belega

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Belega - Dianne HartsockDianne Hartsock has a new MM fantasy romance book out, The Karthagans Book One: “Belega.”

The Karthagans have regained their ancient powers of manipulating nature, but at the price of madness. In their lust for control they’ve destroyed their island and most of their race. They come now to Belega where one of them, Camron, seeks domination over the known world.

The Mage has come from the northern continent of Sennia to bring peace, but finding his strength no match for the coming struggle, he passes his abilities on to Natan, who only desires a simple life. Now only Natan has the ability to stop Camron, but the personal cost is more than he imagines.

It is only with the combined strength of his friends, his Karthagan lover, Kavi, and his deep desire to bring peace to the earth, that he finds the courage to overcome Camron and restore balance to the world. The power of the mind is immense.

In this world, mankind has learned to gather the energies of creation to use at their whim. But absolute power corrupts absolutely.

Publisher | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CAN

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Excerpt

Belega meme - Dianne Hartsock“I have you.”

Natan rose into a low crouch from the scrub brush, careful not to scrape his cloak against the foliage, and searched his memory for the trick Kavi had taught him. Oh, yes. He took a deep breath and let it out slowly, releasing all worries. His expectations. Letting go. The clip of the horse’s hooves echoed in his mind and he concentrated on that, the smell of the horse, the feel of its hide, the oats on its breath. He became aware of a vague fear in the animal’s mind.

But then the tenuous connection broke without time to try again as the soldier leading the roan brought him to a stop, his gaze sweeping the path ahead, alert. Gathering his scattered wits as best he could, Natan lunged to his feet and dove for the soldier’s legs. They went down hard, Natan gasping at the whoosh of air against his cheek as the horse reared, hooves barely missing him. Knowing he was no match for the soldier physically, he scrambled to jab a knee into the man’s back, then drew his thin knife and pressed it against the pulse at his throat and felt him stiffen.

“Hold very still,” he warned. The soldier didn’t move as the keen blade inadvertently nicked his skin. Recalling Kavi’s imprisonment, Natan gritted his teeth and swung his arm back, then brought the hilt of the knife down sharply on his vulnerable skull. The man went limp with a grunt. Natan climbed to his feet, cursing under his breath as the horse disappeared up the trail. He rolled the man over so his face wouldn’t be in the dirt, making sure he could breathe without difficulty.

Frowning at the thick trees crowding them, he left his captive a moment to scout the vicinity, at last coming upon a small clearing off the trail. It took some effort to drag the unconscious soldier to the spot, and a relief to roll the heavy body down the last few feet. He retrieved leather strips from his pack and bound the man’s hands and feet to a small sapling, and examined the soldier’s head once again. Although the purplish welt had swollen, the bleeding had stopped.

Natan watched the soldier a moment, and shook his head in disgust when he didn’t waken. “Hit him too hard,” he muttered, angry with himself. He built a small fire as the air grew chilly, and sat with his back to a tree while he waited for the soldier to regain consciousness. Darkness descended on the forest and he chewed his lips in growing anxiety. Bryon had gone to Nagal to petition the Mage to help them recover Kavi. Had he reached the city yet? If so, Natan would need to be at the Lake of Glass to meet with them in a few short days. A lifetime, while Kavi remained captive.

He sharpened his knife on a whetstone to pass the time while the soldier remained unconscious. The stars came out and an ache crept into his chest as he thought of Kavi and how they used to lie awake and watch for falling stars. Natan would make them tea in a little pot over the fire, and they’d wrap in warm blankets and talk quietly while the sky wheeled overhead. Sometimes they made love, Kavi’s warm sleek body pliant as Natan searched out new ways to draw those sweet breathy moans from his lips.

And then it had all ended. Natan closed his eyes at the jab of pain in his heart. The Nagal soldiers had come to their camp and dragged Kavi away, laughing when Natan struggled, and methodically beat him senseless. That had been two weeks ago, and every attempt he’d made to find his lover had failed. The last time he’d been threatened with imprisonment himself.

He would do Kavi no good behind iron bars, he reminded himself again.

Natan opened his eyes to find the captive staring at him from where he’d slumped against the tree. Natan went over and helped him to a sitting position.

“What’s your name?” he asked with ice in his voice. The man continued to stare at him, insolent. Natan looked him over carefully. “Let me guess. You’re dressed as a Nagal soldier, though you’re obviously not one. Maybe a deserter? Maybe a Barkuit spy?” He watched the soldier’s face as he named the rival country, then leaned closer to whisper, “What of Kavi?”

“That trash?” the man asked in surprise, and yelped when Natan lunged at him, knife slipping into his hand.  “Say that again and I’ll slit your throat. Now, what

is your name?”

“Captain Syros Reed.”

Natan sat back on his heels, fury hot in his chest.

“Speak.”

“I could tell you where they mean to bury him,” Syros drawled, holding Natan’s gaze, and smiled slightly at his sharply indrawn breath. “He was alive the last time I saw him, but I heard they mean to bury him soon. If you hurry, he may still be breathing. I don’t know.”

“And you didn’t help him?” With a sudden enraged cry Natan drove his knife into the sapling inches from Syros’s face. “He’d better be alive, for your sake.”

He left his water skin for Syros, should the man succeed in freeing himself, then gave the soldier no more thought as he snatched up his pack and settled into the long run ahead, determined to be at the Lake of Glass on time.


Author Bio

Dianne HartsockDianne grew up in one of the older homes in the middle of Los Angeles, a place of hardwood floors and secret closets and back staircases. A house where ghosts lurk in the basement and the faces in the paintings watch you walk up the front stairs. Rooms where you keep the closet doors closed tight at night. It’s where her love of the mysterious and wonderful came from. Dianne is the author of paranormal/suspense, fantasy adventure, m/m romance, the occasional thriller, and anything else that comes to mind.

She now lives in the beautiful Willamette Valley of Oregon with her incredibly patient husband, who puts up with the endless hours she spends hunched over the keyboard letting her characters play. Dianne says Oregon’s raindrops are the perfect setting in which to write. There’s something about being cooped up in the house with a fire crackling on the hearth and a cup of hot coffee in her hands, which kindles her imagination.

Currently, Dianne works as a floral designer in a locally-owned gift shop. Which is the perfect job for her. When not writing, she can express herself through the rich colors and textures of flowers and foliage.

Author Website: http://diannehartsock.wordpress.com/

Author Facebook (Personal): http://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/diannehartsock

Author Facebook (Author Page): https://www.facebook.com/Dianne-Hartsock-Author-107985445959828/

Author Twitter: http://twitter.com/diannehartsock

Author Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/diannehartsock/

Author Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/4707011-dianne-hartsock

Author QueeRomance Ink: https://www.queeromanceink.com/mbm-book-author/dianne-hartsock/

Author Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Dianne-Hartsock/e/B005106SYQ/

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PROMO: Hallelujah

Promo

HallelujahKim Fielding and F.E. Feeley Jr. have a new gay horror book out:

“Hallelujah.”

Can you hear it?

Whispering in the dark.

Secrets only the dark knows.

Joseph Moore, choir director for the First Baptist Church of Lenora, Nebraska, has secrets of his own. Terrible, lonely secrets. One that involves natural human desire. One that calls forth powers he cannot begin to understand. Both with the potential to destroy him and those he loves.

Now the world is changing. The darkness, the shadows, the ghosts, are closing in—and Joseph and his lover, Kevin, are being stalked by a merciless demon, hell-bent on possession.

Can you hear it now?

Warnings: violence. This is not a romance.

There in the dark.

It’s whispering your name.

Amazon | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Smashwords


Giveaway

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Excerpt

“NO!”

Joseph fought against the hands on his shoulders. The room was sweltering, and all his strength had sapped away.

“NO!”

“Joseph, open your eyes! Open your eyes, dammit!”

He was being shaken, and despite his unwillingness, his eyes opened. Kevin’s face stared down at him.

“Fuck you. Let me go!”

Joseph pulled away and fell backward onto the altar steps. His attempt to break the fall caused his wrist to smart painfully, and he whimpered. His whole body shook; he felt sick to his stomach.

Kevin raised his hands in surrender. “What the hell, man? Who did this to you?”

“What?”

“What do you mean, ‘what’? You’re beat to shit. Did someone jump you?”

Joseph looked down and saw his scratched-up legs and swollen ankle. He scanned the sanctuary, half expecting the shadowed figure to be lurking somewhere nearby. But that wasn’t the case. All the lights were on, brilliantly illuminating every corner. There was no sign of the spirit who normally haunted the place.

“Who are you looking for?”

Joseph faced Kevin once again. “What? No one. What are you doing here?”

Although Kevin had been bare-chested at their last meeting, he was wearing a shirt now. Well, part of a shirt. It was an old Budweiser tee with the sleeves cut out and the sides wide open. When he moved, it revealed glimpses of his chest and flat stomach. Joseph felt his face flush as he averted his gaze.

“I was driving by and saw all the lights on and the door open. Figured the joint was getting robbed or somethin’. Then I found you wailing on the floor in…. Damn, dude. Look at your wrist.”

Joseph saw it was swollen. The memory of where he’d been flashed in his mind once more. The red-eyed gaze was burned into his memory.

But that had all been a dream, hadn’t it?

Please, Lord, let it have been a dream.

“Who did this to you?” Kevin repeated with a furrowed brow.

“Nobody. Look, I came back here because I thought I left something, and I fell. I must have banged my head or something.”

“You fell. Where? Into a war zone?”

Joseph snorted a laugh and looked up at him ruefully. “I don’t know what happened.” He hoped Kevin would leave it alone.

Outside, thunder crashed loudly enough to make them jump, and through the front door of the church, they could see the rain falling in torrents.

“Shit, my car windows!” Kevin took off running.

Joseph watched him go, Kevin’s ass bouncing as his long legs carried him out of the door. “Dammit,” Joseph muttered as he clenched his eyes closed.

He tried to get up, but as soon as he put weight on his ankle, it gave and forced him to sit back down.

What am I going to do?

Just then he saw the ghost once more. She was floating on the upstairs balcony, looking down at him. Her mouth was moving, and if Joseph sat really still, he swore he could hear her words, carried on the wind that howled through the open church door.

Rock of Ages, cleft for me

Let me hide myself in thee

He felt sadness wash over him. She wasn’t terrible to look at; in life she must have been quite beautiful. But he didn’t know how to help her.

“You must help them, cher.” Celine had said.

Kevin dashed in through the door. His jeans were soaked and his wannabe T-shirt stuck to his muscular build. “Well, we got two options.”

“Yeah, what’s that?”

“We could wait out the storm before I take you home, or I can haul your crippled ass right now into said storm and take you home.”

Joseph reached out his good hand to Kevin, who grasped it and pulled. Joseph lurched to his feet and, in trying to keep the weight off his swollen ankle, ended up clinging to Kevin. They were almost nose to nose, staring into each other’s eyes as they held fast.

Blood pounded in his Joseph’s head. “I gotta get home.”

Kevin’s long eyelashes fluttered once, twice, three times before registering what he’d said. Yet his hands didn’t move. The two of them looked as if they were on a dance floor waiting for a waltz to start.

“Yeah, let’s get you home. Here, lean on me.”

“I appreciate it.”

They moved slowly across the floor of the church.

“You gonna tell me who did this?”

“I honestly don’t know.”

“Crazy shit, man.”

Joseph nodded. “Yup. It’s been a hell of a night.”

They closed the door behind them, got into the car, and drove cautiously into the downpour with the windshield wipers slapping.

Five minutes later, the lights they’d forgotten to turn off went dark.


Author Bios

Kim Fielding - Hallelujah

Kim Fielding

Kim Fielding is the bestselling author of numerous m/m romance novels, novellas, and short stories. Like Kim herself, her work is eclectic, spanning genres such as contemporary, fantasy, paranormal, and historical. Her stories are set in alternate worlds, in 15th century Bosnia, in modern-day Oregon. Her heroes are hipster architect werewolves, housekeepers, maimed giants, and conflicted graduate students. They’re usually flawed, they often encounter terrible obstacles, but they always find love.

After having migrated back and forth across the western two-thirds of the United States, Kim calls California home. She lives there with her family and her day job as a university professor, but escapes as often as possible via car, train, plane, or boat. This may explain why her characters often seem to be in transit as well. She dreams of traveling and writing full-time.

Author Website: http://kfieldingwrites.com

Author Facebook (Author Page): https://www.facebook.com/KFieldingWrites/

Author Twitter: @KFieldingWrites

Author Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kfieldingwrites/

Author Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4105707.Kim_Fielding

Author QueeRomance Ink: https://www.queeromanceink.com/mbm-book-author/kim-fielding/

Author Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Kim-Fielding/

F.E. Feeley Jr. - Hallelujah

F.E. Feeley Jr. 

First and foremost, I am a husband to my wonderful husband, John. I am a father of our five-year-old German Shephard, Kaiser. I am an avid reader of Mysteries, Horror, and Suspense, and biographies. I am a gamer. My favorite ones are Dragon Age, Mass Effect, Star Trek Online, Skyrim, Assassin’s Creed, Fallout, and Civilization Five. I love to cook and I love trying new recipes (hint hint). I am an avid music junkie from POPular music to Opera, to Showtunes, Gospel, Rock, Rap, and Hip Hop. I am also a Poet – a lot of which is offered on this web page for free. And I do some gay fiction writing from time to time.

I love connecting with people. As an ex- fundi, I grew up in a world where there was this invisible boundary set down between me and the world around me. I felt more like an observer than an actual participant in that world. Since I’ve left fundamentalism – it has been my constant endeavor to be a part of the world. To be a part of humanity. And when I write my poetry or my books, I draw from the experiences of being raised in that environment as well as the experiences of tasting the bouquet of humanity I’d been denied all those years ago.

Author Website: https://fefeeleyjr.com

Author Facebook (Author Page): https://www.facebook.com/groups/170296487228770/

Author Twitter: @fefeeleyjr

Author Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/f.e.feeleyjr/

Author Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6806438.F_E_Feeley_Jr_

Author QueeRomance Ink: https://www.queeromanceink.com/mbm-book-author/f-e-feeley-jr/

Author Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/F-E-Feeley-Jr/

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PROMO: Peacemaker

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Peacemaker - E.M. HamillE.M. Hamill has a new queer sci fi book out, book two in the Dalí Tamareia series: “Peacemaker.”

Third-gender operative Dalí Tamareia thought their life as an ambassador ended when they joined a galactic intelligence agency. When they’re yanked out of the field and tapped to negotiate the surrender of deadly bio-engineered warriors who crashed into hostile territory, Dalí is thrust headfirst back into the tumultuous world of galactic diplomacy.

Dalí has faced Shontavians before, but not like these. The stranded mercenaries are highly intelligent and have an agenda of their own. Dalí can’t afford to be distracted from the negotiations by their own demons or the presence of a charming diplomat with a mysterious past.

As a brewing civil war threatens to derail the entire mission, Dalí must use all their skills to bring this dangerous situation to a peaceful end—but the Shontavians may not be the biggest monsters at the table. Someone is determined to see Dalí and their team dead before they discover the brutal truth hiding in the wreckage.

NineStar Press | Amazon | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Smashwords | Goodreads


Giveaway

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Excerpt

PeacemakerI took a quick turn in the cleanser to rid my skin and hair of the tacky residue left by the decon spray. In the warmth and vibration, I shuddered as the last of the physical characteristics I’d adapted to pass as male shifted back into my neutral, sexless state. My crewmates didn’t expect me to assume a gender, something for which I remained grateful. Without hormone stimulation to drive the change, the process was more painful, and my shoulders complained against the grind of bone and muscle.

I tamed my wavy brown mop as best I could, drawing it into a short, braided queue at the back of my neck before putting on the dress black uniform hanging in my quarters. The white starburst of diplomacy blazed in holographic relief on my left shoulder with the multiarmed spiral of the Remoliad’s sigil on the opposite sleeve.

To be back in the uniform of an ambassador felt strange. Transient reflections in the narrow window showed a me I hadn’t acknowledged in over two years. I barely recognized the echo of who I used to be, a transparent ghost against the stars outside.

The reason I had been pulled out of the field began to make sense, though I still didn’t know what the assignment entailed. Time to find out.

At the closed door of Sumner’s ready room, I tugged at the tunic’s high collar, squared my shoulders, and tapped on the panel to request entry.

“Commander. Permission to enter?”

“Granted.” The door slid aside with his verbal acknowledgment. I stepped through.

Silhouetted by the flicker of busy data screens behind the desk, Sumner wore a black uniform with insignias of diplomatic service similar to mine but without the starburst rank of ambassador. Instead, he wore the pips of an officer in the Remoliad Fleet on the high neck of his collar. He stared at the screen of a PDD, his expression dark and troubled.

Sumner glanced up and a crooked grin formed on his lips as he rose. “Ambassador Tamareia. I haven’t seen you in a while.”

His vocal inflections sounded almost normal, but his eyes still held frost. We were never this formal with each other, a sign of the tension between us.

“I haven’t seen me in a long time either. It feels very strange.” I took a deep breath. “I would like to apologize for my insubordination, especially for what I said in med bay, Commander. I was out of line.” Embarrassment burned in my cheeks, and I lowered my gaze. “I owe Melos and Ziggy more than an apology. I was under the influence on a mission, and I put the lives of my teammates in danger. I will accept the consequences of my actions as you deem appropriate.”

“Grab a chair.” He gestured opposite his desk, and I sat. “I think I owe you an apology as well. I’ve gotten used to autonomy. When some bureaucrat tells me to drop whatever I’m doing and pull my operatives in the middle of a potentially productive mission, it pisses me off. The order to recall you came from so far over my head I got vertigo. The rest is just the frost on the comet, and it pushed me over the line.” He cleared his throat. “I’m sorry for the vendetta remark.”

“No, you were right. I needed to be reminded why I’m here. You promised only that I will be involved when we take them down, not that I would be the instrument.” No matter how badly I wanted the privilege, I had a bigger job to do. “Who told you to recall me?”

His mouth twisted in an ironic smile. “The Remoliad security council.”

My eyebrows threatened to merge with my hairline. “The security council has authority over the Penumbra?”

“Technically. My superior answers to the secretary general, but it’s almost unheard of to receive a direct order from any office.”

“I don’t understand.” I frowned. “Did my mother have anything to do with this?”

“No, Ambassador Urquhart isn’t involved as far as we can tell. We checked since the order was so specific. But I just received more details.” He handed me the data device he’d been scowling at when I came in. “Against all previous declarations of disdain for galactic alliance, the Ursetu recently issued an emergency petition for their planet to become a member of the Remoliad.”

I narrowed my eyes at him and took the PDD. “I saw something about that in my debriefing file. The crown princess is dead?”

“Yes. The queen and her grandson, Prince Razaxha, are still alive.”

“What happened? Was the planet attacked?”

“Yes and no.” He swept his hand and a heads-up display swirled into view between us. “I’ll warn you up front, this is brutal.”

The wreck of some immense ship blighted the forested grounds of a ziggurat-like palace, silhouetted against the backdrop of a sharp black mountain. Columns of smoke and flames traced the outline of warped and twisted debris. The recording lens zoomed in on a section of the disaster where tiny flashes of light sparked and died. As the picture enlarged, I sat forward in shock.

“Enhance this area.” Sumner circled the spot on the heads-up and spread his fingers. The portion of the holovid expanded, grainy, blurred, and blocked by foliage, but I made it out plainly enough. Enormous, gray-skinned figures piled out of the wreckage.

Shontavians.

The four-armed beings appeared unstoppable as they swatted aside the Ursetu and their guns, snatched up the soldiers with their sharp-taloned hands and—

A psychic memory of the taste of blood and entrails hit me so hard I fought the urge to vomit.

“Stop the playback!” I drew heavy breaths through my nose until the nausea passed and my heart stopped pounding. Sumner swept his hand over the enlarged holo, reducing details to a safe distance as my mind attempted to process what I’d seen.

A ship hadn’t crashed in the middle of an Ursetu city. It was the orbiting laboratory where Shontavians were engineered and kept isolated until their sale to whomever bought their mercenary services. It crashed into the planet or was deliberately brought down.

By whom?

The Ursetu faced monsters of their own making—huge, intelligent creatures with the serrated teeth and claws of a predator, created solely for fighting wars. And they had a craving for sentient meat.


Author Bio

E.M. HamillElisabeth “E.M.” Hamill is a nurse by day, unabashed geek, chocoholic, sci fi and fantasy novelist by nights, weekends, and whenever she can steal quality time with her laptop. She lives with her family, a dog, and a cat in the wilds of eastern suburban Kansas, where they fend off flying monkey attacks and prep for the zombie apocalypse.

Her other books include the acclaimed sci fi novel Dalí, the snarky urban fantasy Nectar and Ambrosia, and several short works of fiction. Visit http://www.elisabethhamill.com for a full list of literary work.

Author Website: https://www.elisabethhamill.com

Author Facebook (Author Page): https://www.facebook.com/EMHamill

Author Twitter: @songmagick

Author Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16592440.E_M_Hamill

Author QueeRomance Ink: https://www.queeromanceink.com/mbm-book-author/e-m-hamill/

Author Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00JY0FV8S

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PROMO: When Are You?

Promo

COVER - When Are You?Addison Albright has a new MM time travel romance book out: “When Are You?”.

They have to find him…but how?

A former member of an elite military special forces unit, Leo Bailey can handle anything life throws at him. Except maybe approaching a certain gorgeous, purple mohawk-wearing, heavily pierced artist. Not without his three eye-rolling wingmen along to push him in the right direction.

One look at the mouthwateringly muscled, military buzzcut-sporting man with the endearing blush, and Vincent Noland is in love. Or at least in lust. Love comes later. Then marriage…and sweet, adorable Oscar.

Life is perfect—the stuff of fairy tale happily ever afters—except for Arthur Fletcher, whose unsettling reactions to them threaten to upset the happy balance of their lives. But it isn’t Arthur who throws their lives into turmoil.

A freak event causes Oscar to go missing and leaves both men frantic to rescue their son. As they piece together the clues, they discover that Oscar isn’t somewhere. He’s somewhen. And Arthur Fletcher holds the key—or rather the glass beads—to their one chance of finding Oscar.

Will Leo’s training, Vinnie’s determination, and Arthur’s knowledge help them rescue Oscar, or is the little boy doomed to spend the rest of his life at the mercy of a primitive civilization? Could there be a third possibility?

Publisher | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | QueeRomance Ink | Goodreads


Giveaway

Addison is giving away three sets of a $10 Amazon gift card and a backlist eBook with this tour. For a chance to win, enter via Rafflecopter:

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Excerpt

MEME1 - When Are YouThey reached the quivering wall of air and rushed through it to the sound of the old woman on the bench screaming as their shoes found purchase on the park’s pervious rubber pathway, and they surged forward…then tumbled headlong onto the surface as the counterweight they’d been pulling vanished.

Leo grunted as his forearms scraped along the path. He stared uncomprehendingly at the stroller’s handlebar, still clutched in one hand. The handlebar and about six inches of pole on either side ending with a clean cut.

Leo gaped, unblinking and breathing heavily, at the path behind them. The wavering air…it was gone. The air was normal.

The woman hadn’t stopped screaming. Vinnie was panting—hyperventilating?—and snatching at bits of light green fabric that matched the stroller’s canopy.

“Oscar?” Leo’s voice came out in a squeak. Louder, he repeated, “Oscar?” He sat up and scanned the area. An unrelenting hand clutched his heart. Squeezed it. Squelched it. Liquified it. Oscar was gone. The entire stroller, other than the handlebar, was…gone.

Leo shoved his sunglasses to the top of his head. His breath caught in his throat, and he looked around again. He shouted, “Oscar!”

“No, no, no, no…” Vinnie chanted as he stumbled to his feet and spun around, fruitlessly looking everywhere…anywhere. He snatched another bit of green fabric floating on the air. “No, no, no, no…this isn’t happening.”

“Oscar!” Leo yelled again. His stomach lurched, threatening to heave because their actions were pointless. Wherever they’d been, that’s where Oscar still was. The portal had snapped shut, cutting them off, but every cell in Leo’s body screamed in denial of this reality. “Oscaaaaar!”

The woman stopped shrieking but sucked in rattling breaths behind her hands that now covered her face. Behind them on the path, voices broke through Leo’s focus.

“Oh, my God, did you see that?”

“What the hell just happened?”

“They just disappeared…into…thin air.”

“What happened to the kid?”

“Somebody call 9-1-1!”

In the field, the people who’d been kicking soccer balls had stilled and were staring, wide-eyed.

Vinnie crumpled to the ground, hugged his knees to his chest, bits of green fabric clutched in his hands, and rocked. Leo barely heard Vinnie’s words as they tore his heart in two. “No, no, no, no…”

Leo doubled over and retched. He’d failed Oscar. He’d failed Vinnie. He’d failed. Utterly and completely failed.

He hadn’t cried since middle school, but a garbled sob escaped him now. He dragged a forearm across his mouth and turned back toward where the wavy air had been. “Oscaaaaar!”

“Where did it go?” Vinnie choked on a rattling sob of his own. “Where did it go? We’ve got to go back and get him! Where did it go?”

Leo lifted his face to the sky. “Oscaaaaar!”

The faintest of echoes was the only answer to Leo’s agonized plea.


Author Bio

Addison AlbrightAddison Albright is a writer living in the middle of the USA. Her stories are gay romance in contemporary, fantasy, paranormal, and science fiction genres. She generally adds a subtle touch of humor, a smidgen of drama/angst, and a healthy dose of slice-of-life to her stories. Her education includes a BS in Education with a major in mathematics and a minor in chemistry. Addison loves spending time with her family, reading, popcorn, boating, French fries, “open window weather,” cats, math, and anything chocolate. She loves to read pretty much anything and everything, anytime and anywhere.

Author Website: https://authoraddisonalbright.com

Author Facebook (Personal): https://www.facebook.com/addison.albright.profile

Author Facebook (Author Page): https://www.facebook.com/AddisonAlbright

Author Twitter: http://twitter.com/AddisonAlbright

Author Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/addison.albright/

Author Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2739864.Addison_Albright

Author QueeRomance Ink: https://www.queeromanceink.com/mbm-book-author/addison-albright/

Author Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Addison-Albright/e/B00J119QGS/

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PROMO: Going Down

Promo

COVER - Going Down - Lady Jaguar

Lady Jaguar has a new MM erotic action-adventure romance out: “Going Down.”

A misunderstanding leads to seduction, then a life-changing job offer…

Tino Santini is calm and decent with a core of steel, qualities he needs when he is offered the role of PA to ferocious CEO, Richard Mason.

The opportunity arises after Tino is trapped with Mason in the office elevator just before Thanksgiving. A bottle of brandy kickstarts a night of scorching sex which does wonders for Tino’s flagging career.

Pansexual multi-millionaire, Richard, has it all; wealth, success, commitment-free sex every time he snaps his fingers, but a former female lover, a New York gangster and a murky past all threaten to destroy his chance of happiness.

Tino gradually learns who his boss really is, whilst willingly keeping him happy both in the bedroom and out of it. Neither of them expect their relationship to be anything other than business, until a personal tragedy means that Richard needs Tino more than ever.

For both of them, that first chance meeting is the catalyst for a headlong plunge into sexual adventures, murder and possibly love.

Warnings: one instance of drug use, alcohol use, violence, historical incest query, extreme possessiveness.

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CAN


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Excerpt

Going Down meme - Lady Jaguar

THE CEO’S OFFICE was behind a tall oak door with his name emblazoned on a silver plaque. Tino knocked and went in, figuring it was okay as Mason wanted him to follow in the first place.

The room was empty, so Tino went back outside and asked Eleanor what he should do.

“He’s probably in his bathroom,” she said. “Just wait for him in the office. Don’t make him come looking for you.”

Tino hurriedly returned to Mason’s office. The space was huge, with two glass walls giving views up and across Fifth Avenue. His black mahogany desk was also enormous, and mostly empty apart from a telephone, an ink blotter and an Art Deco lamp.

To one side of the office were two large grey leather couches and a smoked glass coffee table in between. The wall behind one of the couches was dominated by a large square artwork consisting of a series of blips and lines, black on white background. At the bottom was the discreet legend, Love Story. It didn’t make any sense to Tino, but he never pretended to be an art buff.

As he waited, perched on the chair opposite Mason’s desk, he tried to remember what he knew about the man usually occupying the large black leather chair.

Not much, apart from everyone knew he had an evil temper. There had also been some talk of an affair with a transgender hooker, and the supercars he had stored in the parking lot underneath the building. Tino had even heard a rumor that he’d killed someone once, with his bare hands.

He ran his finger around his collar, hoping he wouldn’t start to sweat. The man was terrifying, that much he did know. Some said he was a generous and fair boss who wasn’t to be messed with. Others called him Godzilla under their breath and tried to avoid him at all costs.

There was no doubt he polarized opinion in the office. Anyone who had received a tongue-lashing from him bore the scars for life.

Tino’s backside pimpled and he fought the urge to run. Christ, what was he doing here?

He heard the toilet flush, and within a few moments, Mason came out of another door on the opposite side of the office. He still wore his suit trousers but his upper torso was distractingly bare, revealing a broad chest smattered with silky black hair, and a Celtic knotwork band circling one upper arm. On his back, there was a wolf’s face, similar to the Wolfen company’s logo. As Tino continued to check out the CEO’s muscular swimmer’s shoulders and narrow waist, Mason threw his shirt at him, making him jump.

“Get that cleaned, will you?”

The garment smelled of him, and Tino had to resist the urge to bury his face in it. Instead, he watched as Mason covered up that divine chest with a fresh shirt and began fiddling with the cufflinks.

“Help me,” he said impatiently.

Immediately, Tino jumped to his feet and went to assist. The cufflinks were gold, the stones white diamonds. They must have cost the equivalent of half a year’s salary for Tino. He fumbled and dropped the second one.

As he bent down to pick it up, he noticed Mason’s feet were bare. No shoes. No socks, just long, prehensile toes and perfectly pedicured nails with black nail polish. He tried not to stare, concentrating on the task in hand.

When he had finished, Mason went to sit in the black leather executive chair on his side of the desk.

“First off, questions.” He clasped his hands on the desk in front of him.

Tino waited, staring at the snowy cuffs and sparkling diamonds.

Mason waited.

“Sir?” Tino said, when the waiting became painful.

“Don’t you have any?”

Tino realized Mason had been asking him what his questions were.

“Oh, right! Er, yeah. A bit of a shock, coming in this morning and being told to clear my desk. Why do you want me, sir? I thought…”

Mason took a file out of his desk drawer and opened it. “Valentino Santini, born 1988, educated in Brooklyn. Average grades at best. Came to Wolfen as a filing clerk in 2012. Proved to have an aptitude for marketing and a pleasing telephone manner. Worked up through the company to become a junior manager and then…” He slammed the file shut. “Career stalled thanks to one ambitious little prick. I would fire him, but he gets results. So back to you. You’re loyal, discreet, bright and personable. Those are the qualities I need for someone to eventually take over from Eleanor. Also, the ability not to take shit from anyone, most of all me. You think you can do that, Valentino?”

“Yes sir,” Tino replied promptly.

“My question to you is, why would you want to? Work for me, that is??”

Tino opened his mouth and closed it again. “I… wasn’t given the choice, was I?”

Mason gestured impatiently. “Of course you have a choice. You think I want someone who hates the air I breathe? There are plenty of internal positions within the company, not only here but in any one of our offices. The pay won’t be as good but…”

“I want to work for you,” Tino said, cutting him short.

“Why?”

“I like a challenge. Someone says to me, ‘it’s impossible,’ I like to prove to them it isn’t.”

Mason smiled crookedly. “You expect to have me eating out of your hand any time soon?”

Wow. For a moment, Tino couldn’t speak. He was mesmerized by the man in front of him, enviable cheekbones, straight dark hair that spiked over a high forehead, cruel lips that had …

No, don’t think about what we did in the elevator, for fuck’s sake…

He snapped back to the present.

“If I did, it wouldn’t be a challenge, would it? Sir.”

Mason rested back in his seat, long fingers stroking the fat leather chair arms.

“One could argue this is a woman’s role. Being my Man Friday? Being at my beck and call? Listening to me when I’m jacked up on JD and wanting three whores in my apartment within fifteen minutes? Ringing you when you’re at your sick mother’s bedside and screaming at you for forgetting to organize my pastrami bagel? Threatening to fire you every five minutes? Do you really want to work for a blue-chip asshole like me?”

He came around to Tino’s side of the table and perched on the desk in front of him, impaling him with an intent glare. Tino could smell his sandalwood aftershave and something much muskier, beguiling him, screwing with his reason. He tried not to look at the man’s crotch. If he didn’t know any better, he was sporting a healthy-looking semi.

“I think I can handle you,” he muttered.

“Oh, I know you think you can.” Without warning, he took Tino’s chin in a strong grip and forced him to look up. “Don’t make the mistake of falling for me, Valentino. Eleanor probably already told you this. I break balls, rip hearts to shreds and fuck like a demon, but I don’t do love. Respect, yes, if it’s earned, but not love. Never forget that.”

“I have no intention of marrying you, sir,” Tino replied, deadpan. Inside his chest, his heart was beating so loud, he was surprised Mason couldn’t hear it.

Mason let go of his face, grinning savagely. “And that, Valentino, is why I want you. I think we understand each other.”


Author Bio

Lady Jaguar’s first den was in the depths of Archive Of Our Own and Wattpad, where she still writes fan fiction for Holby City, Good Omens and Doctor Who (Eight.)

Now she has ventured out with a story her readers asked her to write and is just about to place it at your feet like a dead rodent. Expect filth, high-octane frolics and every beloved romance trope known to mankind!

Lady Jaguar is on Instagram (when they haven’t banned her,) Twitter, and down with the kids at Tumblr.

Author Website: https://www.jaynelockwood.com

Author Twitter: https://twitter.com/realladyjaguar

Author Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ladyjaguarwrites/

Author Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19878228.Lady_Jaguar

Author QueeRomance Ink: https://www.queeromanceink.com/?s=lady+Jaguar&search_type=book_search

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PROMO: Of Magic And Scales

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Of Magic and Scales - Natalina ReisNatalina Reis has a new MM Paranormal murder mystery romance out: “Of Magic and Scales.”

With a serial killer on the loose, the baffling mystery of Aiden’s past, and their tenuous budding romance, Aiden and Fouchard tread through a world of magic and myth on padded shoes, terrified to stir up something neither can control or defeat.

Aiden Mercer’s life now centers around lounging on the sunny beaches of his adopted country with a beer in one hand and a coffee in the other while admiring the local male population. After a rough life as a respected detective in DC, playing it cool shouldn’t be too hard, right? With the magical community on his case and dead bodies piling up around town, the responsibility of finding their killer seems fated to fall on him and deny him of his easy living.

Then there is Naël.

Cantankerous merman Naël Fouchard’s life is focused on bringing up and protecting his little sister. When DNA found at the scene of the murders mark him as the prime suspect, Naël seeks out the help of Aiden, whose reputation as a detective grossly belies his lazy lifestyle and apparent lack of ambition.

The chemistry between the strong, stoic Naël and the easygoing Aiden is undeniable, no matter how many walls Aiden builds.

If this unlikely pair can’t come to terms with their feelings for each other long enough to catch the killer, their emotional turmoil might yet allow the murderer to kill them instead.

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Excerpt

Of Magic and Scales - Natalina ReisI’m not sure what I am, but I certainly know what I am not. I know I’m not a witch because—well, I’m male. I’m definitely not an elf, since I have no sudden urges to hop onto somebody’s shelf around Christmas. Vampire I am not. My perfectly straight teeth have never once turned into fangs, neither have I ever had a sudden, strange craving for human blood. I’m not a werewolf either. I do have hair on my body but nothing that would qualify me as a wolfman. Besides, I am still pretty much myself during full moons.

But I am not a regular either, because unlike most normal humans, I can see magic beings. By “seeing,” I mean I recognize them as such. Anyone can see them, unless the magicals choose for them not to. I, on the other hand, can always recognize them, unless they purposely hide themselves behind a special magic charm.

I don’t remember not having the ability, so I’m guessing I was born like this. Whatever this is. Good thing that I’m used to it, because seeing magical beings for what they are can be a pretty traumatizing experience, as it was the time I freaked out during a trip to Greece, when I had a close encounter with a minotaur. Nice chap as it turns out but not a pretty sight.

I’ve lived a pretty normal, average life running Bicas R Us, a coffee shop in a small coastal town in sunny Portugal, for the past year or so. After an incident in Northern Virginia that put me on the pages of the local news—don’t ask; it involved a pretty handsome elf and his irate troll boyfriend—I thought it would be better to start again somewhere new. I had visited the tiny nation some years before and fallen in love with its never-ending beaches and kicked-back lifestyle, so I packed my bags, contacted a real estate agent and the immigration office, and got myself a brand-new life.

I had played with the idea of buying a coffee shop on the beach, but I figured it would be a mother to keep the place—and the coffee—free of sand. So, I bought a store nearby in the town square, a short walk from the beach. Portugal is littered with three things: tourists, ancient churches, and coffee shops. Nobody would notice me, the brown haired, blue-eyed American who came to explore the locals’ passion for the hot brew.

The other perk of living here was that magical creatures were not spotted as often. Vampires were virtually nonexistent because of the year-round sunny weather, trolls and ogres were limited to the mountains in the north and, unless you visited the nearby mountain of Sintra that crawled with magical activity, the only thread of magic on the coast was the sporadic water sprite and the beachcombing witches who sold their wares in local shops. All in all, a pretty placid place for someone like me to live in.

I enjoyed today’s cool breeze blowing from the ocean, sitting on a chair in my small esplanade under a red umbrella with a glass of cold beer in my hand. Yes, in this sunny paradise I was allowed to sell and buy alcohol in my coffee shop. Behind my light pinewood counter, the wall shelves were covered in bottles that held more than coffee flavorings. What a great nation this was.

While Cristina, my only employee, was busy serving the few customers who loitered inside the café, I could enjoy the local fauna as they hurried from shop to shop or headed out to the beach. Summer hadn’t quite arrived yet, but the sun had warmed the air enough for the locals to shed their wintry clothes and don more relaxed apparel. From behind my shades, I followed the trek of three young men, all shirtless and in swimming trunks. Hot. Not the weather, the guys—tanned, lean and muscular, shorts low enough on their hips to reveal that sexy vee—

“Olha para ti, a salivar como um cão por um bife.” Cristina had sneaked up from behind and interrupted my yummy thoughts.

“Speak English, woman,” I told her, sliding my glasses down my nose to look at her over the rim. “You’d think you’re Portuguese, or something.”

She slapped me mercilessly across the back of my head and plopped herself on the chair next to mine. “Idiota.”Without so much as a may I, my small Portuguese friend and employee grabbed the glass from my hand and took a long swig of my beer. “Are you going to sit here all afternoon watching the hot guys walking by?”

“And what’s wrong with that?” Cristina spoke flawless English but enjoyed confusing me with spurts of Portuguese once in a while. She pulled up another chair and placed her feet on the seat, her legs crossed at the knees. “What exactly did you call me just now?”

“A dog salivating over a steak.” She took another swig before I could retrieve my beer. “Don’t you have more important things to do with your life, Aiden?”

I wiped her foam mustache with a finger. “Not really. Why do you think I moved here from Virginia?” She blinked her eyes at me, pretending not to know what I was talking about. “Easy living, sunshine, and hot, half-naked guys.”

Cristina laughed, her face turned to the sun. She had skin the same color as the cork in a wine bottle, a honeyed brown made darker since the early spring weather replaced the cool air of winter. “You’re something, Aiden. You have no other dream or ambition? Just basking in the sun and ogling sexy men?”

Not quite correct but part of the truth. “Are you jealous?”

The skin crinkled around her green eyes as she turned her gaze to me. “Only if you flirt with guys I have my eyes on.” She spotted a couple of newly arrived customers and hopped to her feet. “Customers. Unlike you, I have some interest in making a buck here and there. I enjoy having a roof over my head.”

As she walked away, I yelled, “No need. You can always sleep on the beach.”


Author Bio

Natalina ReisNatalina wrote her first romance at the age of 13 in collaboration with her best friend. Since then she has ventured into other genres, but romance is first and foremost in almost everything she writes. She’s the author of We Will Always Have the Closet, Desert Jewel, Loved You Always, and Lavender Fields.

After earning a degree in tourism and foreign languages, she worked as a tourist guide in her native Portugal for a short time before moving to the United States. She lived in three continents and a few islands, and her knack for languages and linguistics led her to a master’s degree in education. She lives in Virginia where she’s taught English as a Second Language to elementary school children for more years than she cares to admit.

Natalina doesn’t believe you can have too many books or too much coffee. Art and dance make her happy and she is pretty sure she could survive on lobster and bananas alone. When she is not writing or stressing over lesson plans, she shares her life with her husband and two adult sons.

Author Website: https://natalinareis.com/

Author Facebook (Personal): https://www.facebook.com/authornatalinareis

Author Facebook (Page): https://www.facebook.com/authornatalinareis/

Author Twitter: https://twitter.com/TichaB

Author Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/reisnatalina/

Author Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14883335.Natalina_Reis

Author QueeRomance Ink: https://www.queeromanceink.com/mbm-book-author/natalina-reis/

Author Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Natalina-Reis/e/B01ADQ9FJW/

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PROMO: Ice Gladiators

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Ice Gladiators - Genevive ChambleeGenevive Chamblee has a new MM sports romance book out: “Ice Gladiator.”

Dalek “Taz” Tazandlakova is the epitome of a hockey player—tall, broad, and powerful. As a forward for the Lafayette Ice Water Moccasins, he’s also the physical embodiment of domination and intimidation.

He’s everything Liam Jolivet isn’t.

Liam possesses an inner strength and confidence Taz has never mastered. On the surface, Liam appears to be a perfect match for Taz. The problem is, Liam is dating Taz’s roommate. It’s not the only problem, either. Taz is a “playa” and has commitment issues—along with a pain-in-the-ass coach who’s threatening to ruin his career, and a second roommate who wants to dictate his social life for his own personal gain.

Nevertheless, Taz wants Liam, and Liam appears to want to reciprocate. Do they dare cross the line?

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Giveaway

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Excerpt

Ice Gladiators(Contains explicit language)“Actually, you’re more likely to get jabbed in the ribs or guts than beat over the head. That’s too obvious a penalty.” Taz reclined on the sofa. “The entire point of sticking is to move someone out of your way or send a message without getting caught. Hockey’s physical and intense, but it isn’t vicious. We respect each other, even if we don’t always like each other. We hit hard, but it’s without malice. At the end of the day, it’s our job. Besides, I thought this kind of thing turned you on. At least, that’s what Jackson said.”

“I said what?”

“You said he liked hockey. Obviously, he doesn’t.”

Spencer’s brows furrowed. “I’m right here. You can talk to me.”

“I said no such thing,” Jackson, Taz’s other roommate, rebutted, picking through the mixed nuts.

Victor set the bowl on a table. “And that’s my cue to leave.”

“What did I miss?” Liam Jolivet questioned, carrying three beers and two soft drinks.

“Nothing,” Victor answered. “Hand them their drinks. You and I are watching the rest of the game in my bedroom.”

Pfft.” Jackson snorted. “You’re leaving to fuck.”

At least someone’s getting lucky tonight, Taz thought. And with a hottie like Liam, why not?

Victor frowned. “And what’s it to you?”

Taz shook his head. “Wow, Jack, that was tacky, even for you.”

“Calling them like I see them.”

“You must have cataracts in both eyes, then,” Taz huffed.

“What did you mean by sticking sending a message?” Liam asked, distributing the drinks.

“Not that kind of sticking,” Jackson interjected before Taz replied. “But if you have to ask, Vic must not be handling business.”

“Fuck you, Jack,” Victor barked.

Jackson smirked. “That’s what I meant.”

“Shut up and drag your mind out of the sewer. Come on, Liam.”

“Okay, just a minute. I want to hear Taz’s answer.”

“Suit yourself,” Victor snapped, storming down the hallway and slamming a bedroom door.

Twisting the cap off his beer, Taz stared after Victor for a moment before turning his attention to Liam. “You’d better go.”

“I will, but I’m interested in what you were saying.” Liam plopped on the couch, his soulful brown eyes genuinely intrigued. He bore a meet-your-parents smile with a hint of danger that stirred Taz’s curiosity. “I know you probably get sick of all my questions every time I come over, but search engines only tell so much—computer-compiled facts. You give not only the human aspect but spill an inside scoop. It’s not like Victor ever tells me this stuff.”

“It’s an intimidation tactic,” Taz answered. “If guys know you hit, they don’t hit you or your teammates.”

Spencer clicked his tongue. “As I said: barbaric.”

Taz waved his hand. “It’s part of the game—not a nice part, but there it is. And it’s a lot tamer these days with league regulations than several years ago. Back in the day—”

“Liam!” Victor yelled from the bedroom.

“You’re being summoned, fuck boy.” Jackson laughed.

A flush swarmed up Liam’s throat to his face as he rose and trekked to the bedroom.

“He’s too easy.” Jackson chuckled.

Taz rolled his head across the back of the couch to face his roommate. “Why do you do that?”

Jackson shrugged and took a swig of beer.


Exclusive Content!


Author: Genevive Chamblee
Book Title: Ice Gladiators
Type: Author Interview/Writing
Subject: Places I Find Interesting

There is so many places that I find interesting and ways to answer that question. Literally, I could discuss this for hours. Let me begin by saying I love traveling. Due to scheduling and obligations, I do not have the opportunity to do much of it. However, if you follow me on my blog, most of you know that I commute cities regularly. I don’t consider that travelling.

Years ago, I traveled frequently, and I really enjoyed it. I had the opportunity to see awesome sites and meet terrific people. However, much has changed since then. I have plans to return to being able to travel more in the future. My bucket list items include to visit the stadiums of every SEC football team. Hey, what can I say? I’m a football type of girl.

This next may seem creepy, but it is what it is. I find cemeteries to be interesting. Each tombstone is a marker of someone who once walked this earth, and a way for them not to be forgotten. Now, I admit when I was younger, I was terrified of cemeteries. And to be completely transparent, you won’t find me skulking around them alone (or with anyone else) at night. Yet, there is a beauty to a place dedicated to appreciate life. I like to stroll among the graves and note the names, dates, and epitaphs. It keeps me in contact with my humanity—that no day is ever granted and to appreciate the living. Sometimes, if a grave appears neglected, I’ll pull the weeds or leave a flower. Mind you, if the grave looks too far gone with overgrowth, I’m not going near it. This here is the bayous, and slithery, creepy crawlies conceal themselves in brush. And that is also why I don’t pick strawberries. Nope, not happening.

Side note. Several years ago, I had someone who tried to convince me the majority of snake bites are warranted because the person did something wrong. The something wrong, according to this person, is getting to close. Well, yeah! If I don’t see the dang thing, how am I supposed to know I’m close to it? This person continued and said that if a snake hears (feels the vibration or catches the scent of a person) it leaves an area. Okay, believe that if you want to. We’re going to have to agree to disagree because I happen to know how aggressive cottonmouths are, and they will chase a person. I’m not open to discussion about this. Been there; done that. End of story. I don’t do slithery. As a result, I don’t really do nature. I love animals, and never want to see any mistreated. I respect their space, and hope they respect mine. If one is injured, I’ll try to help, of course. And in a control setting, I do not mind petting. But I’m not about to trying to be bore whisper or a Parselmouth.

I’m a history buff. Any time I have the opportunity to visit a museum, I’m taking it. Wax museums are some of my favorites.; although, they tend to be too chilly for me. I especially like museums that have little known artifacts or displays how objects work. My head is a vault of trivia. (Guess what one of my favorite games to play is.) My friends would also say I’d be their call person if they were ever on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire. (I couldn’t be on Jeopardy because I stink at geography, and it always is stacked with geographical questions.) In general, if it is unusual, it’s something that I’m going to want to learn more.

On a similar note, I find how the mind works intriguing. I’m trained in psychology and behavioral science. For that reason, I’m good at noticing patterns. Solving puzzles or riddles is a fascination. Thus, it’s very rewarding to unravel someone’s thinking patter so that they can receive proper psychiatric help. I’ve worked in mental health for many years in different environments. My primary duties have been diagnostics and evaluations and not so much as counseling. In the field, I’ve seen more than a fair share of oddities and strangeness. My coworkers accuse me of always having a story for whatever topic they’re discussing.

From a more global perspective, Rome definitely piques my interest. It is an abundance of history—from architecture to music to people to art to language. It has everything. A grand tour of the country ranks in the top ten on my bucket list. (Number one on my bucket list is a Disney Cruise.)

Several years ago, I watched a program that highlighted different tourist locations. One place discussed was a prospect place. Tourist paid a fee and could mind for gold and other gems. Anything they found was there’s to keep. I suspect it has had so many tourists that there is not much left to be found. However, it would be fun trying. I’ve never been in a crystal/gem mine, and diamonds are a girl’s best friend.

Those are just a few of the places. For more of my interests, likes, dislikes, how I write, my stories, and my shenanigans, giveaways, and more, check out my blog, Creole Bayou, http://www.genevivechambleeconnect.wordpress.com. New posts are made on Wednesdays, and everything is raw and unscathed. Climb on in a pirogue and join me on the bayou. If you have any questions or suggestions about this post or any others, feel free to comment below or tweet me at @dolynesaidso. You also can follow me on Instagram at genevivechambleeauthor or search me on Goodreads or Amazon Authors.
And also, don’t forget to check out my new steamy, sports romance, Ice Gladiators, guaranteed to melt the ice. It’s the third book in my Locker Room Love series.
Missed the two books in my sports romance series? No frets. Out of the Penalty Box, where it’s one minute in the box or a lifetime, out is available at http://amzn.to/2Bhnngw. It also can be ordered on iTunes, Nook, or Kobo. Visit http://www.books2read.com/penalty. Defending the Net can be ordered at http://www.books2read.com/defending. Crossing the line could cost the game.
Until next time, happy reading and much romance.


Author Bio

Genevive Chamblee - Ice GladiatorsGenevive Chamblee is a southern darling and resides in the bayou country where sweet tea and SEC football reign supreme. She is known for being witty (or so she thinks), getting lost anywhere beyond her front yard (the back is pushing it as she’s very geographically challenged), falling in love with shelter animals (and she adopts them), asking off-the-beaten-path questions that makes one go “hmm,” and preparing homecooked Creole meals that are as spicy as her writing.

Genevive specializes in spinning steamy, romantic tales with humorous flair, diverse characters, and quirky views of love and human behavior. She also is not afraid to delve into darker romances as well.

Author Website: http://www.genevivechambleeconnect.wordpress.com

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