Dreamspinner Press, Lily Velden, The Joyful Approach

Let’s All Make Sure We’re On The “Same Page”, Because “The Race Is On,” And Lily Velden Is Here With A Giveaway To Help Celebrate!






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He was like the only splash of color in a black-and-white photograph.

The man was beautiful.

At an exhibition opening in Sydney, jaded Hollywood heartthrob Jaxon Moncrieff lays eyes on publicity-shy artist Liam Lassiter for the first time and is immediately captivated. But he doesn’t get far into their first conversation before he realizes what he’s feeling is attraction, which brings him up short. Jaxon has always been a womanizer.

Despite his reservations, Jaxon makes a play for Liam, but Liam has his own issues. Unlucky in love and orphaned at sixteen, he is reluctant to open his heart to anyone, and dismisses Jaxon out of hand.

Driven by a need he doesn’t understand, Jaxon organizes a return to Sydney to film his next project. If he can’t be with Liam, maybe they can be friends. Of course, that creates a whole new problem. Now Jaxon is falling in love for the first time. How can he move their relationship from friends to lovers without destroying the trust he’s worked so hard for


SAME PAGE, Book 1 of HOW THE LIGHT GETS IN, is my debut novel. Consequently, I’d never written a love scene prior to them. Through the WHAT IFs, I was able to ‘practice’ before having to do the ‘real thing’ in How The Light Gets In!

I hope you enjoy my ‘practicing!’




It is not an alternate story line, and please remember, it has no bearing on the plot of the original story. It is, however, a direct spin-off, and thus, the page from where the deviation occurs is noted.


hasn’t been professionally edited.
All mistakes are my own!
I apologize in advance!


Commences from Page 135


The tempo of my heart matched that of the loud pumping music as I stood a few feet inside the dimly lit club, barely taking in the décor or the individual patrons as my gaze scoured the crowd for Liam. I hungrily scanned the room, searching for his distinctive auburn hair. I felt both excited and anxious. Going days on end without seeing him was becoming harder and harder to bear, but the thought that tonight might herald a whole new direction in our relationship made my pulse race in anticipation.

When, moments later, my gaze lighted upon him, I wished it hadn’t. My mouth went dry, and try as I might, I couldn’t swallow. I gasped, my lungs noisily emptying of air, making me feel weak and light-headed. My heart stilled momentarily before its beat escalated to such a rapid rate, I thought it might explode out of my chest cavity. Waves of nausea had me leaning shakily against a pillar, wishing I could drag my eyes away from the sight of my beautiful Liam with his hands resting lightly on the hips of a young blond man. It wasn’t Ryan; I knew that from the photo Liam had sent me. His hair was too fair, and his face too pretty. But if it wasn’t Ryan, then who the hell was he, and what was he to Liam? And where the fuck was the famous Ryan? The blond had his arms on Liam’s shoulders, his face tilted up, smiling broadly. Seeing that hurt, but not as much as seeing the familiar, indulgent smile he received from Liam in return.

No! No! No!

I didn’t recognize, at first, the feelings that overwhelmed me. All I knew was that I didn’t like them.

I didn’t like the vile, bitter taste in my mouth.

I didn’t like the heat that pulsed through my body.

It was not the pleasurable heat of passion, nor even the uncomfortable heat of embarrassment. This heat didn’t warm and awaken; it burned and scorched, leaving devastation in its wake. It was like a forest fire erasing everything in its path.

Jealous. Oh my God, I’m jealous! So this is what it feels like.

How many times had I depicted this emotion in a movie? How many times had I read it eloquently described in a book or script? The reality was so much more devastating, so much more forceful. It hijacked my mind with its fiery power, making logical thought impossible. My jealousy coupled with my pain, incapacitating me.

My instincts screamed at me that they’d known each other sexually. The evidence was there in the familiarity of their touch, the way they rested their fingers on hips and shoulders. I watched as the blond swayed his hips, moving his hands from Liam’s shoulders down to his waist. He took a step backward, taking Liam with him, obviously wanting to dance. Liam was laughing and shaking his head, but the blond was persistent. I wanted to race across the room and drag him away from Liam, but I couldn’t, not without declaring myself. Groaning, I stood, torn.

To declare or not to declare.

A small strangled sound escaped me as I continued to survey their interaction. Liam held up his hand using the age-old signal for stop. He dipped his hand in his pocket, then extracted his cell. The whole time he typed a text message, the blond kept his hands on Liam’s waist, swaying his hips enticingly. I was so mesmerized by the scene unfolding before my eyes that the buzzing of my phone in my jeans took me by surprise. Swallowing painfully, I removed it from my pocket and opened the message I knew was from Liam.

Where are U Pretty Boy? U still coming?

His use of my nickname while another man had his hands on him cut like a knife. As much as I longed to see him, to hear his warm brandy voice and be with him, I knew I couldn’t. I was far too shaken and upset. No amount of acting skill would have enabled me to hide my feelings, and I knew I wouldn’t be able to control myself to idly stand by and watch him flirt with the blond.

No. Filmin ran L8—C U 2morrow

Liam puckered his brow in a frown and pressed his lips together, and as I watched, he quickly typed into his phone. And still the fucking blond grasped him by the waist, swaying his goddamned hips.
OK. Will pick U up at 10 for brekky

Sure. C U then

If I’d had any common sense, any sense of self-preservation, I’d have left then, but I had neither of those things when it came to Liam, and so I stayed. Stayed and tortured myself. I felt skewered to the spot, my gaze riveted on him as he moved to stand behind the blond, his hands on the boy’s hips, grinding his cock sensually against his ass.

I whimpered.

I wanted it to be me. Me. I wanted it to be my ass he was pressing so erotically into.

Every movement turned the knife in my gut a little more. Every touch sent the scorching fire of jealousy blazing through my veins, and when Liam moved his hand caressingly up the boy’s chest, while lowering his lips to his ear, I was pierced by a pain so excruciating my knees buckled. I clutched the column I was hiding beside to stop myself from falling to my knees. Silently, I thanked God for the loud music that concealed my tormented, plaintive wail.

Please stop, Liam. Please stop. I love you. Please, sweet Jesus, stop!

For three songs, three seemingly endless songs, I watched. As the final beats of the third song filled the room, the blond turned within the circle of Liam’s arms. I silently screamed at him in protest as he raised his arms and linked his hands behind Liam’s neck. Mentally, I cursed his fingers as they toyed with the hair at the nape of Liam’s neck. How many times had I imagined doing that myself? I could still remember how its silkiness had felt the one time I’d known the pleasure of it as it slipped through my fingers. He pulled Liam down to whisper something in his ear. I stiffened—my body as tight as a coiled spring. So help me, God, if he kisses or licks the mole on Liam’s neck, I’m going to pulverize him!

My jealousy roiled unpleasantly in my belly as Liam smirked at the boy and nodded. No! That’s my smirk. You smirk at me! That’s it! Declare! Declare! Declare!

I rocked on the balls of my feet, still undecided for the briefest of moments. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Declare. Do it. Now.

It almost felt like an out-of-body experience as I strode toward them, carving purposefully through the crowd like the prow of a mighty ship through choppy waters. Neither of them saw me until I planted my feet before them, my gaze zeroing in on Liam.

“Thanks for warming my man up for me, sugar, but your services are no longer required.” I shifted my glance from Liam to focus on the twink, my drawl deceptively casual—one wrong word from the fucker and his pretty face wasn’t going to be so pretty anymore. Liam’s jaw dropped in surprise.
“What? Who the hell—” Blondie began, scowling at me.

I gave him one last chance. “What part of, ‘your services are no longer required’ did you not understand? Skedaddle. Shoo. Vamoose.” My lips were smiling but my eyes made it clear—he was in danger.

He whirled around to face Liam, placing his hands on his shoulders. “Handsome?” he questioned, and I could hear the smug tone in his voice. He obviously thought he had his man hooked. I took a half step closer to him, my fists balled, jaw clenched tight, and my body ready to pounce.

Liam’s eyes widened, his gaze shifting to look down at the twink. “I think you should look for my friend. He’s somewhere in the back corner,” he whispered, raising his eyes to look at me over the boy’s shoulder, while gesturing to the dimly lit area at the back of the club. “He’s the guy with dark blond hair, dressed all in black, with a dick that would probably put the Eiffel Tower to shame. He’s probably getting a blow job—you may have to take a number—but trust me, it will be worth your while. Tell him Liam sent you.”

Twinkie Boy gasped, seemingly insulted, but I noticed, as he stormed off, that he was headed in the direction Liam had indicated. My gaze locked with his, and I didn’t allow myself to dwell on Liam’s knowledge of Ryan’s anatomy or sexual prowess—that he wasn’t out the back blowing him was all I needed to know. For several long moments we stared at each other.

He spoke quietly, his eyes full of questions. “You came.”

“Not yet, but I’m hoping it’s on the agenda for this evening.” I replied, my voice husky with emotion.
He gasped, lowering his lids, his lashes fanning his blushing cheeks, drawing my gaze down his face to his mouth. He bit down on his bottom lip, and with that one action the last shred of my self-control slipped from me. With one stride, I was pressed against him, my hands firmly cupping his face, my lips crashing to his, parting them and demanding entry. It wasn’t so much a kiss as an invading army, as I unleashed through my mouth and tongue, months of pent up obsession and longing. His body sagged against mine, his hands on my hips, his groan vibrating through his chest to mine.

At last he was in my arms.

At last his lips were covered by mine.

At last his flesh was under my hands.

Drunken exaltation coursed through my veins as his flavor exploded in my mouth, coating my dominating tongue as I devoured him. He tasted of wine and caramel, and the more his taste filled my mouth the more I wanted. I couldn’t get enough, and I pressed myself ever closer to him, needing to meld his body to mine. My lungs screamed for air as I continued to ransack his mouth like a man who’d stumbled into an oasis after weeks in the desert.

Finally, unable to deny my body’s need for oxygen any longer, I wrested my mouth from his, dragging in a deep, ragged, panting breath. My need to maintain contact between my mouth and his skin had me planting feverish kisses along his stubbled jaw, eliciting a sensation not unlike pins and needles on my lips, and I shivered, liking it.

Claiming his mouth once more, I wanted to throw back my head and roar with satisfaction when I felt his tongue come out to battle with mine. Upon feeling his reciprocating passion, I allowed him to take control of the kiss, loving the feeling of his tongue exploring my mouth.

Slowly, ever so slowly, his citrus and vanilla scent wrapped itself about me, calming me, and reminding me who exactly it was, I was holding in my arms, and how precious he was to me. My grip on his face loosened, my thumbs relaxing to caress his cheeks, and my fingers gentling in their tugging of his hair. My lips softened, and instead of devouring him, I used my tongue to make love to his. My heart nearly pushed through my rib cage in an effort to join his when I felt his moan vibrate against my chest, and his strong hands clutch me tighter to him.

“Jaxon… I… You…” he began unsteadily.

“Shh,” I hushed him. “Kiss me. Please just keep kissing me. I’ve waited so fucking long.”

I moaned when he did as I asked, the skin of my throat feeling as if it was melting under his lips as he kissed his way down to suck on my Adam’s apple. “Besides,” I croaked. “Talking’s overrated.”

Time had no meaning. Sight and sound had no meaning. The music was still pumping, bodies were still gyrating, but I didn’t register any of it. All I could see was Liam. He was all I could hear and taste. The wet whisper of his lips moving with mine, the taste of him filling my mouth, his scent enveloping me, his warm body pressed flush to my own, these were the things that filled my universe, and they were all that I wanted or needed.

My hands were on his ass, his on mine, as our bodies swayed, our cocks grinding against each other. I wanted to yell with joy. Liam was hard. Liam was so fucking hard.

“Come back to my hotel with me,” I croaked in his ear, kneading the firm cheeks of his butt, longing to slip my hand between the fabric of his jeans to what I just knew would be the smooth flesh of his ass. My heart seemed to freeze, my lungs devoid of breath, as I waited for his reply.

With his one word response my heart took off, like a racehorse charging from the gates. “Yes,” he whispered, darting his tongue out to lick the shell of my ear.

Grabbing his hand, I paved the way for us through the sea of bodies, impatient to be free of the crowd and alone with him. I felt like Moses parting the Red Sea. I didn’t want an audience watching me as I did what I’d been dreaming of doing with him. Almost bursting through the doors in my eagerness to get us back to my suite, I scanned the street, willing a cab to be available. Liam’s hand was still tightly clutched in my own—I was damned if I was going to let go of it now, not when I’d yearned to have it in my grasp for so long. Out of the corner of my eye, I could see the flush of desire on his cheeks, and a smirk tugging at his lips that were rosy and swollen from my kisses.

“Eager, Pretty Boy?” he teased, his shot-with-whiskey voice low and husky, his thumb caressing the knuckles of my hand as it gripped his.

“Yes,” I answered, unashamed of my need for him.

“Good. Me, too.” He leaned in, his lips brushing against the shell of my ear, his breath hot on my neck. “I’m going to make you feel so fucking good, Jaxon, you’ll think you’ve died and gone to heaven.
“Oh, God,” I groaned, almost jizzing myself in anticipation, frantic now for a cab. Where the fuck is a cab when you need one?

As if in answer to my prayers, one pulled up beside us, and I nearly wrenched the rear door of its hinges in my haste to open it, practically pushing Liam in ahead of me. I could hear his chuckle as he slid across the seat, making room for me.

Sliding in, I was vaguely surprised to see a young attractive woman behind the wheel. “Where to, boys?”

“The Sofitel Wentworth,” I replied, immediately swiveling in my seat to face Liam as he sat, his face turned toward me. Leaning in, with the intention of claiming his lips and kissing the grin from his face, I rejoiced to feel his hand rise to cup my cheek, his other coming to rest on my waist, drawing me closer.

With his hands urging me closer still, he freed his lips from mine, whispering, “Come here, Pretty Boy, so I can kiss you properly.”

I didn’t need to be asked twice, moving to straddle his thighs, whimpering when his hands cradled my head, pulling my face down to his, our surroundings totally forgotten. The moan that escaped me as his mouth took ownership of mine seemed to echo within the confines of the car. His tongue was hot and demanding, and I felt myself giving myself over to him—if this was a battle, then I had just raised the white flag of surrender.

For a long sweet moment, I swam in the delicious nectar of our kiss, and then his hands were between us, deftly popping the buttons of my jeans, releasing Buddy from the confines of my briefs in one swift, sure move.

I couldn’t move. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t speak. My tongue felt so thick in my throat, I thought I might choke on it. My heart was pounding, the blood buzzing so loud in my ears that it was as if from a distance that I heard Liam speaking to the driver.

“So, Tel81, I’ll pay you triple what the meter says if you keep your eyes on the road, and drive until I tell you otherwise.”

“Sure, no problem. One scenic tour coming up!” I thought she might have laughed, but I wasn’t sure.

“Now where was I?” Liam whispered seductively. “Oh yes, I was looking after your pretty cock, wasn’t I, Jaxon?” His lips were on my throat, his tongue licking up to my ear, sucking the lobe into his hot mouth before he bit down on it gently. “I want you to watch me, Pretty Boy. I want you to watch me make your dick feel so damn good you’ll think all your Christmases have come at once.”

With those words, he leaned back and I looked down, mesmerized by the sight of my engorged and leaking cock, almost crimson in its need, encased in Liam’s pale, slim hand. Slowly, his fist slid up my shaft, his thumb swirling over my weeping slit, almost making me come at the feeling of pleasure at being touched in this way by him. I felt myself arching toward him, my head thrown back as a groan rumbled up from the base of my belly, working its way out of my throat.

“Look at me, Jaxon,” he ordered quietly, his voice husky with lust, and I obeyed without question, my blue gaze locking onto his fiery russet one. “Watch me pleasure you.”

With a whimper, I tore my gaze from his, to look again, trance-like, at my dick, thick and throbbing with need, scarcely able to breathe as he rhythmically pumped me. I was beyond coherent thought, beyond speech, capable only of groans, sighs, and whimpers, a slave to sensation.

My senses were heightened, my body hyper aware of my surroundings. I could feel the small movements of my buttocks over his denim-clad, muscled thighs and the hardness of his cock. His citrus and vanilla scent filled my nostrils, his breath coming in hot pants against the heated flesh of my throat, as his strong hand slid so erotically up and down my length. I watched and I savored, overjoyed to feel him harden further beneath the cheeks of my ass.

I wanted him to want me, as I badly as I wanted him.

I longed for him to feel as good as he was making me feel.

“Do you like that, Jaxon? Do you like me jacking you off?” he asked hoarsely, his voice compelling me to answer.

“Yes,” I hissed, barely recognizing the husky tones as my own, thrusting my hips forward, my dick begging for more.

His grip on me tightened, his other hand leaving my hip to reach in and cup my balls.
“Oh, God,” I wailed quietly.

“Do you like my hands on you, Pretty Boy? Does my touch make you feel good?” His questions were spoken so softly, and yet they demanded a response from me.

“Yes, God yes!”

“Have you been dreaming of me, Jaxon?”

“Yes,” I admitted, knowing it was pointless to deny it.

“Do you fantasize about my lips wrapped around your pretty cock? Of plunging your dick down my throat again and again, fucking my face?”

His voice was hypnotic, drawing the truth from me. “Yes.”

“Then do it,” he commanded softly, one hand moving to my ass, urging me to kneel over him as he slid slightly down the back of the seat, his other hand guiding my cock to his waiting mouth.

His gaze was glued to mine as he licked his lips before parting them, bringing the tip of my dick to rest on his bottom lip. “Do you want your cock in my mouth, Jaxon?” As he spoke, his lips brushed over my head in butterfly soft kisses, and I sucked my breath in, resisting the urge to thrust Buddy into his teasing mouth.

“Yes,” I groaned.

“Then what are you waiting for, my Pretty?”

Not waiting for a response from me, he swiftly swirled his tongue around my head as he pulled my hips toward him, devouring Buddy in one delicious swoop.

“Oh, my fucking God!” I cried when I hit the back of his throat, the tight wet heat of his mouth the most exquisite of tortures. The car changing lanes almost had me losing my balance, and I shifted my hands to grip the backrest of the seat above Liam’s head. I clenched my buttocks, pushing my hips forward, plunging my needy cock back down his throat.

With his hands firmly grasping my butt, he directed me in and out of heaven, his lips sliding in a tight vacuum up and down my length. Throwing my head back in bliss, I cursed and I keened.

Vaguely, I registered it had begun to rain, the drops on the rear window distorting the shifting colors of the store fronts and other moving vehicles into a fragmented kaleidoscope. The wet sound of car tires on the rain-slickened streets blended with the moist sound of my dick gliding in and out of Liam’s talented mouth, both background harmony to my deep groans.

Look at him. He fucking wanted you to look at him!

Tilting my head, I looked down into his face, at his hollowed cheeks, suffused with a pink flush. God, it looked so good to see my dick disappearing into his warm mouth, to see his full lips sealed about my girth, and his gold-striated eyes on fire with desire, staring up at me.

“You feel so good, Liam,” I breathed. “So fucking good!”

He hummed about my cock, his eyes darkening at my words, his hands encouraging me to plunge; harder, faster, deeper.

Panting, my heart racing like I’d run a marathon, I felt my balls tighten, the tight coil of my climax quivering in my belly.

Whimpering, I cried, “I’m so close! I’m gonna come!”

I tried to pull myself away from his hungry mouth as my climax rose like a tidal wave in my gut, but he held me fast to him, his nose buried in the trimmed curls of my pubic hair. He hummed and swallowed around me, his hands clutching at my buttocks, and with one final wail of surrender, I let go, leaping off the cliff into the most intense orgasm of my life. Spurt after spurt of my essence cascaded down his throat and he took it all, his throat working to swallow all that I offered him.

Exalted and spent, my thighs trembling, I collapsed on his lap. Buddy slipped from his lips, soft and sated. I fell forward, my head coming to rest on his shoulder, and I felt relieved to feel his chest heaving as deeply and rapidly as my own.

“You tasted so good, Pretty Boy. I want more.” His whispered words made me moan into the crook of his neck, my tongue darting out of its own accord to taste him.

Lifting my head, I cradled his face, staring at the thick sweep of his lashes fanning over his cheeks. He looked so contented. The sight tore the breath from my lungs. Tenderly, I placed a kiss on each eyelid, my gaze moving to his mouth, seeing a drop of my seed on his bottom lip. With a soft whimper, I lapped it up, inhaling his happy sigh, before following my flavor into the velvety warmth of his mouth.

Long moments later, I dragged my lips from his, shuffling back on his thighs, my fingers moving to the button of his jeans.

His hand moved over mine, stopping me, and I raised my eyes from the bulge of his groin to look into his molten eyes, confused.

“No,” he said quietly, shaking his head.

“But I want to touch you… I want to make you feel good too,” I whispered, frowning at him.

“Oh, you will, Pretty Boy. You will,” he murmured. He chuckled, caressing my pouting lips with the pad of his thumb. “In fact, I’m hoping you’ll do more than just touch me, but I’ll wait my turn till we get to your room. I’m not sure our driver, Tel81, would survive us going a second round in her taxi.”

At his words, I turned my head to look in the rear vision mirror, meeting the eyes of our cab driver, seeing her smirk and wink at me.

Mmm, yes, maybe round two would be better done in private…






Website: http://www.lilyvelden.wordpress.com
Email: lilyvelden@live.com.au
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lily.velden
Twitter: @LilyVelden
Tumblr: http://www.lilyvelden.tumblr.com/

Same Page: Dreamspinner Press
The Race is On: Dreamspinner Press

Josephine Myles, Lily Velden, M.A. Church, Shannon West, Taylor V. Donovan, The Joyful Approach

A Sneak-Peek At The Coming Week!

The Joyful Approach Countdown To GayRomLit 2013 is in full swing, and so far the reception has been pretty spectacular. In case you missed it, I have the full schedule posted HERE, including links to the posts that have already gone live, both here and at Joyfully Jay’s place. Some of those giveaways are already closed, but you can still go check out what the authors had to say. I’ve also added another author to the celebration, so watch out for Carter Quinn’s visit on October 1st!

This Week’s GayRomLit Visitors include:

M.A. Church on August 26th, with a giveaway of her new book, Shadows in the Night
On August 27th, Lily Velden will be here with a giveaway of her latest release, The Race Is On: Book 2 How the Light Gets In
Wednesday, the 28th, we’ll be hosting Shannon West, and she’ll be offering one lucky reader the chance to win her new book, Bloodlust

But wait, there’s more! We also have a couple of great authors visiting with us apart from the Joyful Approach Celebration.

On Thursday, the 29th, Josephine Myles will be here on her Junk Blog Tour. She’s offering a couple of great items to a lucky winner, including a sexy book tote and a $5 E-book gift voucher. She’ll be giving you a link to all the details in her post.

Finally, on August 30th, we’ll be hosting Taylor V. Donovan on her Six Degrees of Separation (By Degrees Book 2) Blog Tour. Stay tuned for details on what Ms. Donovan will be up to during her visit.

And of course, as always, we’ll have plenty of reviews coming too. We hope to see you around for the fun!

Have a great week!


Dreamspinner Press, Lily Velden

“The Race is On” To Secrets Revealed

“Once exposed, a secret loses all its power.” ― Ann Aguirre

The Race is On is the follow up novel to Velden’s Same Page that continues with the budding romance of Jaxon and Liam. Jaxon is a movie star that has fallen in love with the very handsome Aussie, Liam. Jaxon and Liam, while negotiating the normal components of a new relationship, also have to deal with keeping their relationship a secret until the time is right to announce their relationship to family, friends and the world, since Liam is a high profile Hollywood leading actor. It’s through their many attempts to safeguard their secrecy, maintain and work out the specifics of how to make their relationship work, and introduce the fact that the previously very heterosexual Jaxon is in a gay relationship, to his family, that this meaty novel takes place.

Velden does a wonderful job of continuing her story with a great cast of characters. The pace and the storyline from the first novel continue seamlessly with the first novel and, in fact, I believe this novel can stand alone in its own right. Velden’s true strength however is writing sex scenes, and let me tell you this author can write sex scenes. I was amazed how well she could continue to push the envelope and make each sex scene exciting and fresh; though for my taste, there is perhaps too much sex since it seemed to be every couple of pages the two main characters were going at it like rabbits. I like a little more meat and storytelling with my sex, but this author does a great job of writing a very steamy romance. However, Velden also does a great job of capturing the love and the true romance of the main characters, and they are surrounded by a cast of memorable supporting characters.

If you liked the first novel, Same Page, then you will certainly like The Race is On. If you are looking for a really hot and steamy read, then you will love this novel.

Reviewed by: Bruce

You can buy The Race is On here:

Lily Velden

In The End, Lily Velden’s Characters Find Themselves On The “Same Page”

“Can miles truly separate you from friends…If you want to be with someone you love, aren’t you already there?”– Richard Bach

I really wanted to love Same Page. I really did. The blurb was interesting, the cover arresting, the premise promising. For me, it just didn’t hold up the way I had hoped.

Same Page is the story of Jaxon Moncrieff, a world famous American actor who is seemingly straight and Liam Lassiter, a publicity shy Australian sculptor who is openly gay.  The two meet at the opening of Liam’s exhibition in Sydney.  Jaxon immediately finds Liam enthralling, but Liam wants nothing to do with the actor he mistakenly sees as a publicity whore.  In reality, Jaxon hates the celebrity that comes with his profession and feels like he spends most of his life playing the “part” of Jaxon Moncrieff, actor.

The first third of Same Page was superb.  The slow build in Jaxon’s realization that he feels a strong attraction to Liam, another man.  The way he holds back because he knows how Liam dislikes Jaxon’s image as a womanizer.

Jaxon develops a friendship with Garrett Flemington, Liam’s manager.  Garrett is also a father figure to Liam as Liam’s parents died when he was a teenager and Garrett, along with Liam’s family housekeeper, raised Liam from that point on.  Jaxon refrains from asking about Liam, not wanting Garrett to think that Liam is the motivation behind their friendship.

As the months go by, neither Liam nor Jaxon is able to stop thinking about the other.  When Jaxon is able to move the filming of his next movie to Sydney, he sees it as a golden opportunity to get to know Liam.  He has his assistant find out the location of Liam’s intentionally remote home and just shows up at the gate one day.

What follows, is a beautiful time of learning about one another.  Liam shows Jaxon an Australia many never get a chance to see.  Jaxon starts spending weekends at Liam’s home three hours outside Sydney.  Their physical relationship develops slowly, but they are in love with one another pretty early.  This dance, this slow-burning attraction and the poetic way in which Ms. Velden describes the Australia Liam shows Jax is the best part of the book.  In a way, it makes sense that when they are isolated from the world, in their own personal Nirvana, things are at their best.

It is once Liam and Jaxon give in to their feelings and desires that Same Page seems to jump to a different page.  The sex is hot.  The “I love yous” are tender and beautiful.  Ms. Velden leans too heavily on page after page of sex and  declarations of love.  Easily a third of the book could have been done away with as it did nothing to advance the plot.  At first it was great as a reader to have the desire for sex and love that had been simmering between two characters brought to fruition.  Too much of a good thing immediately followed.

Ms. Velden eventually got back on track, back to the story, which is why I read novels instead of porn.  I enjoyed the final, maybe quarter of the book as much as I did the first third.  The sequel to Same Page, The Race is On, is expected August 9.  I will read it because I am emotionally invested in these guys.  I do, however, believe that a sequel is not needed.  The rest of Liam and Jaxon’s story could have been told in Same Page if Ms. Velden had been able to stay on the same page.  She is a new author, and I really look forward to seeing her grow into a writer that I put on auto-buy.  I know she has it in her, she just has to get there.

Reviewed by: Tina

You can buy Same Page here: