4.5 Stars, All Romance Ebooks, Genre Romance, J.R. Gray, Reviewed By Carrie

Review: Say Yes by J.R. Gray

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Amazon

Title: Say Yes

Author: J.R. Gray

Publisher: OmniLit/ARe

Pages/Word Count: 93 Pages

At a Glance: Say Yes is a gritty story of control, and ultimately, of letting go.

Reviewed By: Carrie

Blurb: Charles holds the key to salvation, but James has to say yes.

James failed. He tried to be what they wanted. He tried to deny it. He tried to be a good Catholic boy…but it’s become too much. He craves pain, submission. He’s denied himself far too long, and it’s eating him alive.

Charles thrives off the exchange of power. He knows the world revolves around control. It’s given and taken like currency, in business and in pleasure. He won’t get attached, though, or so he tells himself, until James turns his world upside down. He’s defiant and snarky, but Charles can taste the submission on him.

All James has to do is say one little word.

Dividers

Review: James is young, strong, vulnerable, and was brought up in an uptight, wealthy atmosphere. He has a façade permanently in place that projects the man he wants the world to see. When his father dies and his mother cuts him off, his world becomes all about survival and straddling a line between the world he knew and the world he now resides in. He is the epitome of a young man denying himself everything in the name of keeping his head above water.

Charles exudes dominant sexual tension. Running into the enigma that is James piques his interest in a way not many things have. Oh, he wants James, wants him bad—but first he has to get James to say yes.  The sexual tension between these two men is almost ludicrous—the banter, the flirting, the emotions underneath are heady.

The magnetism of the characters J.R. Gray has created is palpable. There is tight, fast paced writing in this short story and because of that, we get a complete story arc and believable, well-rounded characters with plenty of relationship building. There is a BDSM element to the story, but it is not the focus, merely an element in it. James must learn to embrace himself even if no one else does, and Charles has to overcome past hurts and defenses to be what James needs. In the end, it takes courage for both men to say yes and to find their own power in the doing of it.

This was my first book by this author, but after this novella, I bought another book written by him because of the narrative power he developed in this short story. I hope this is the beginning of a new series for J.R. Gray, as I would love to revisit these two men and get another glimpse into their lives.

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You can buy Say Yes here:

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4 Stars, All Romance Ebooks, Historical Romance, Reviewed by Jennifer, Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Urban Fantasy, Vivien Dean

Review: Unison by Vivien Dean

Title: Unison

Author: Vivien Dean

Publisher: Amber Quill Press

Pages/Word Count: 60 Pages

At a Glance: Time travel and magic collide to right a wrong in history.

Reviewed By: Jennifer

Blurb: Freddie Valek is a dreamer. He dreams about the fantastic as a means to escape, about finding the perfect man, about anything his imagination can conjure. When he falls asleep after work one day and finds himself in pre-Civil War Louisiana, he can’t say that he’s surprised. The only part of the dream that shocks him is that it’s taken him ten years to have a dream about the history of his most prized possession—a water-logged portrait of a man named Ezekiel.

All he knows about Ezekiel is what the woman who gave it to him said. That Ezekiel was the son of a plantation owner and a slave. That nobody ever found out what happened to him. Freddie’s dream thrusts him into the parents’ lives and their demands that he’s been brought to them to find their runaway son, a mission he is more than happy to accept.

But the closer Freddie gets to finding Ezekiel, the more he’s convinced that none of this is actually a dream…

Dividers

Review: Anyone who finds themselves staring off into space and daydreaming will likely relate to Freddie. As a way of escaping the tedium of life, he often dreams of fantastic things to keep his mind occupied, and that’s just the way he likes it. How many of us can relate to that? I know I could.

In this short story, Freddie’s dreaming takes him to Louisiana, before the start of the Civil War. At least he thinks it’s a dream. But when he doesn’t wake up, he realizes he actually is there. And the man he’s fantasized about, the man from a painting he was given, is there too. And needs his help. What follows is an interesting tale of time travel and magic, where spirits are called upon and work their magic on the unsuspecting. But more than that, it’s about connections across time.

Freddie and Ezekiel are wonderful characters. I really felt for them and their situation. Freddie lives in the present, and Ezekiel is just a portrait on his wall. According to the woman who gave the portrait to him, Ezekiel was a slave, the son of a plantation owner, and one of his slaves, who disappears for the family history. Freddie is so caught up in his fantasy that he talks to the portrait hanging on his wall and dreams up new lives for Freddie. And when the two finally meet, you discover Ezekiel heard everything Freddie told him.

While some may not like that aspect, I thought it was unique. Freddie thought Ezekiel was just a figment of his imagination, a part of his usual dreams, and Ezekiel thought he was one of the spirits, or his guide. They didn’t realize the other was real until they meet.

If you’re a fan of time travel stories, I recommend this one. It’s short enough to read in one sitting, and it will leave you feeling good at the end. Though I would have liked more to discover what happens next to Ezekiel and Freddie, and how they deal with their new situations, where the author left off is a good stopping place; it felt natural rather than forced. I might want more, but I’m happy with what I got.

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You can buy Unison here:

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4 Stars, All Romance Ebooks, Cardeno C., Genre Romance, Reviewed by Pia

Review: Jumping In by Cardeno C.

Title: Jumping In

Author: Cardeno C.

Publisher: OmniLit/ARe LLC

Pages/Word Count: 55 Pages

At a Glance: I loved this book. My only complaint is it was way too short.

Reviewed By: Pia

Blurb: When love’s on the line, the brave jump in with both feet…

Small town cop Clint Rivera can’t catch a break. His ex of two weeks is suddenly getting married, his dogs tore up his furniture, he’s getting evicted, and he’s out of beer. When he decides to solve his alcohol shortage by going to his ex’s engagement party, Clint winds up too drunk to drive himself home.

Enter gorgeous deputy-mayor Hawk Black, the man who constantly shows up unexpectedly and sends Clint’s body and mind into a tailspin with nothing but his whiskey voice and blue eyes. After months of patience, Hawk can finally seduce the man he’s been craving.

Clint’s day might not have started out well, but Hawk’s going to make sure it ends with a bang, preferably in bed. He’ll show Clint some rewards are worth the risk. With love on the line, Clint will need to decide if he can open his heart, tear down his shields, and jump in with both feet.

Dividers

Review: What starts out as a bad day, ends with a happy ending.

Ever had one of those days? We all have, so I can definitely sympathize with Clint, one of our MCs. Clint’s bad day starts out with an invite to an ex- boyfriend’s wedding, continues with destruction by a dog, is made worse when he finds an eviction notice, but the straw that breaks the camel’s back? Faulty fridge which leads to ruined beer.

The perfect solution? Turning up to his ex-boyfriend’s engagement party and drinking lots of bubbly on an empty stomach.

In swoops Hawk, tall, dark and tired of waiting for Clint to finally see what’s in front of him: hard and more than ready to go!

I loved this book. My only complaint is it was way too short, and I would have loved another few hundred pages.






You can buy Jumping In here:

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5 Stars, All Romance Ebooks, Leta Blake, Reviewed by Jules, Self-Published

Love For Leta Blake’s “The River Leith” Runs Deep – Reviewed by Jules


“I don’t know you. I don’t even know why we’re friends, and I still like you. I like you…” Leith swallowed hard and exhaled a shaky breath, searching for the right word. “Desperately.” – Leta Blake


Title: The River Leith

Author: Leta Blake

Publisher: Self-Published

Pages/Word Count: 173 Pages

Rating: 5 Stars

Blurb: Memory is everything.
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4.5 Stars, All Romance Ebooks, Eden Winters, Reviewed by Kim, Self-Published

Eden Winters’ “Coffee Shops and Condoms” – Part of The Real Story Safe Sex Project – Reviewed by Kim


“No glove, no love.” ― Lauren Oliver


Title: Coffee Shops and Condoms

Author: Eden Winters

Publisher: Self-Published

Pages/Word Count: 7600 Words

Rating: 4.5 Stars

Blurb: Two teenaged boys, an unlimited supply of condoms, and too much time on their hands. What could possibly go wrong?

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All Romance Ebooks, Cat Grant, L.A. Witt

Welcome Cat Grant And L.A. Witt And The “Guarded” Blog Tour


Cat and Lori: Hi! Thanks for joining Cat and Lori on this blog tour/giveaway celebrating the release of our first joint self-published book, Guarded. We know you’ll enjoy this super-hot, super-kinky tale of a rock star and his bodyguard. Leave a comment for a chance to win a special Guarded swag pack, featuring an exclusive T-shirt and signed paperback! Each comment counts as an entry, so follow us on all of our stops and rack up more chances to win!

TNA: Hi, Cat and L.A., thanks so much for being here with us today. Why don’t we start out by having you tell us a little bit about yourselves, hobbies, interests, things we might not know about you but should?

Cat: I have a bed linen fetish. (Seriously – my credit card SHRIEKS whenever I walk past Pottery Barn.) You could call me a TV and music junkie too – I’ve got over 80 gigs of music in my iTunes library.

L.A: I’m a music junkie too, and my debit card hyperventilates when I get anywhere near a bookstore. Especially a used bookstore. If they have used CDs, I’m really screwed. I’m also a photographer. Used to be pro, but then realized how much I hate working weddings. So now it’s just a hobby.

TNA: Have you always written M/M Romance, or is that something that came along later in your writing career? What is it that drew you toward exploring gay relationships in your writing? Do you enter a different mindset when writing M/M as opposed to M/F? Or, for that matter, M/M/M, M/M/F, and all the other relationship variants?

Cat: I wrote slash fan fiction for, oh, twenty-odd years before I turned my hand to pro-fic, so I’m pretty comfortable writing all the colors of the rainbow. I tend to concentrate on M/M these days, but I’ve also written a TON of M/M/F.

No, I don’t really enter a different mind-set when I switch sub-genres. Writing is writing. Love is love.

L.A.: I started out writing epic fantasy, then switched to erotic romance when I started writing full-time. A few books later, I was dared to write M/M, and… well, here we are. I can’t even put my finger on why it clicked as well as it did, but writing about two men was almost immediately easy. It just made sense, I guess.

As far as a different mindset, no. As Cat said, love is love.

TNA: If you could go back in time, to the moment you sat down and began writing your first book, what’s the one piece of advice you’d give yourself now that you have the benefit of experience?

Cat: Enjoy the relative peace and quiet, ‘cause once you get published, the roller coaster never stops.

L.A.: OMG, Cat hit that one on the head. Also probably something to the effect of “it’s okay to reject advice that doesn’t sound right, because there’s a good chance it’s not right for you.”

Cat: Yes! That too. I often tell new writers to ignore the naysayers. Sure, your early work will suck – everybody’s does. Just believe in yourself and work hard, and you’ll get there. Above all – don’t give up!

TNA: How would you describe your books to someone who hasn’t read them yet? Do your characters share common qualities? What’s your idea of a great protagonist?

Cat: Cat & Lori books usually feature one or more alpha males butting heads. Or in Jordan’s case – an alpha in the streets, a total submissive pain-slut in the sheets.

A great protag—whether you like him or not—engages the emotions and takes you on a roller coaster ride with him. Them. (You all know what I mean!)

L.A.: LOL @ Cat’s description of Jordan. Right on the money. So far, our books are definitely big on alpha males butting heads. And pulling hair. And shoving. And—

Cough. Sorry. I’d say our characters are generally alphas but not assholes, sweet but not pushovers, and intelligent but somewhat prone to doing stupid stuff in the heat of the moment. And maybe that last part’s not even accurate. Maybe the better way to say it would be that our guys aren’t stupid, but they’re very, very human, and sometimes when emotions run high, people make mistakes.

TNA: Let’s talk a little bit about the reason you’re both here today, your new book Guarded. First of all, rock stars: what made you decide Jordan Kane needed to be a rock star, and what is it, do you think, that makes him particularly sexy?

Cat: What isn’t sexy about him? He’s hot, he’s talented, he’s got a volatile temper. He’s kinky as hell. Everything about him screams “DANGEROUS!” Who wouldn’t want to write about a character like that?

But yes, as Lori points out below, he has a heart. In fact, it’s his love for his best friend that very nearly undoes him.

L.A.: Jordan was one of those characters who came along and said “You bitches are writing my story, so sit down and grab a pen.” He’s dangerous, he’s impulsive, he’s demanding, but he’s also got a huge heart, desperately wants to save his best friend from himself, and craves the kind of love Jase is offering. I mean, we basically had to write this guy if either of us was ever going to sleep again.

TNA: You explore dominance and submission in the book, something it seems Jordan very much needs from his bodyguard/boyfriend, Jase Hewitt, if I’m reading the blurb correctly, to cope with the stress of life in the spotlight. Was a D/s relationship always a part of the plotting process, or did the characters lead you there once you started writing? What would you each say is the most difficult part of writing a really good BDSM scene?

Cat: We were shooting for kinky from the get-go, but we had no idea HOW kinky until the characters decided to go full-tilt-boogie on us. It really was a case of them whispering their darkest fantasies into our ears, so of course we had no choice but to give our boys (yes, Jase too!) what they needed.

Writing BDSM’s really not that hard once you find the emotional core of the scene. It’s not all about toys and costumes. The connection between the characters is what’s most important, IMO.

L.A.: We’ve both written quite a bit of BDSM before, so that was nothing new, but the dynamic between Jase and Jordan was certainly an intense roller coaster. We never knew when one of them would pull out all the stops, and when the other would get overwhelmed because it was too much, and how they’d eventually find a happy medium. Basically, every time we pushed Jase and Jordan deeper into the D/s relationship, we were dumping an entire bucket of fireworks onto a bonfire and then standing back to see if the result was an amazing show or a disastrous explosion.

Cat: WOOHOO! *lights a firecracker, waits for it to go BOOM!*

TNA: In a few sentences, what would you each say about the character you didn’t write that complements and makes him work with the character you created and wrote?

Cat: One of our betas called Jase “the ultimate service Top,” and yeah, that describes him pretty well. He’s a protector at heart. A calming, even nurturing influence on Jordan, who is – let’s face it – intense and stressed and veering out of control.

L.A.: Jordan is a firecracker. No two ways about it. He’s not only the kind of man who wants someone to rein him in, but the kind who needs it. He needs someone who’s willing to push him right to the edge of his limits, but is also safe and sane enough to know when to stop pushing. Essentially, Jordan is a sports car with way too much horsepower, and Jase is the foot on the brake. And as much as Jase is a protector, kind of Mr. Play It Safe, Jordan is basically the wild yin to Jase’s calm yang. Just the right amount of dangerous to keep things interesting, but willing to be pulled back to safety before things get too far out of control.

In other words, Jase seriously has his hands full with Jordan, but that’s how he likes it.

TNA: Would you care to share an excerpt from the book with us?

Cat: Of course! Here’s a tantalizing scene from Jordan’s POV, where Jase takes him to his first play party.

Blurb: On the surface, rock star Jordan Kane has it all. His band No Rules is burning up the charts and headlining a world tour. His bodyguard doubles as a hot, kinky boyfriend who knows just how to push all his buttons. But behind the scenes, he’s suffocating.

Jase Hewitt never imagined he’d have a shot at bedding the larger than life rock star – never mind dominating him – but now he’s worried he’s in over his head. Jordan’s kinks run deep, dark, and sometimes dangerous, putting Jase’s desires to both pleasure and protect him at odds.

They might have a fighting chance at finding the safe, happy medium between what Jordan needs and what Jase is willing to give, but there’s one problem: Daniel, Jordan’s childhood best friend, the band’s talented guitarist — and a volatile, hard-partying drug addict. Jordan is determined to save Daniel from himself, but Jase has been there, done that, and desperately wants to protect Jordan from the inevitable heartache of watching an addict self-destruct.

When Daniel goes off the rails again, Jordan calls off the tour to get him help. Tension within the band skyrockets and pressure from the record label sends Jordan into a dark spiral. Now his band — and his life — are balanced on a knife’s edge, and Jase is the only one who can pull him back… but only if the echoes of his own tragic past don’t push him over first.

Excerpt: “Jordan.” Jase’s voice cut through the resurgent buzz of conversation. He stood next to Robert by the unlit fireplace, turning something long and black over and over in his hands. A piece of ribbon?

No. A length of black leather with a shiny, open padlock dangling at one end.

“Come here,” Jase said, in that command tone that never failed to make every part of me stand at attention—including the part trapped down the front of these skintight leather pants.

I was used to having thousands of eyes on me when I performed, so why did eight people watching me now send every last drop of blood flooding my face? Licking my lips, I padded across the carpet, ten steps that felt more like half a mile, and dropped to my knees in front of Jase.

Renee gasped. Jase almost did too—at least, I could’ve sworn I heard him inhale. This wasn’t anything we’d planned or rehearsed, it just seemed like the right thing to do. The thing Jase would’ve wanted me to do.

“Look at me, Jordan.”

I lifted my chin slowly, meeting his gaze. We hadn’t rehearsed this part either, but I had a good idea what he intended.

“Do you accept my collar for the evening?” he asked.

“Yes, Jase.” I bent my head and let him put it on, practically swooning as his fingers brushed my throat, every touch as intimate as a kiss. Probably the only time he’d be touching my throat all evening, and everyone was watching.

He finished buckling it on, the lock sliding in place with a soft click, then ruffled my hair and cupped my cheek. His warm, sweaty skin was too tempting to resist. I kissed his palm, savoring the salty taste, and heard Renee murmur, “How beautiful.”

“Stand, Jordan,” Jase ordered. I don’t know how I managed it with the weight of all those gazes on me, but I swayed to my feet, pulse tripping when Jase looped an arm around my waist. “Relax,” he murmured.

“Would you like to see the dungeon?” Robert asked. “I’ve made some improvements since you were here last, Jase.”

“Love to,” Jase said.

I followed several paces behind, like Jase had told me to, as everyone picked up their bags on their way to that amazing wrought-iron staircase. Down we went, into the room I’d thought was the basement, but instead of a musty hole in the ground, the door at the base of the stairs opened onto a generous, moodily-lit space with various toys and implements either hanging from or propped against the walls.

A pair of leather-upholstered X-shaped crosses stood side by side. A matching table, upholstered in the same oxblood-colored leather, stood in the center of the room, eyebolts for easy-access bondage decorating all points. A sturdy wooden frame with multi-colored rope woven through it in a chain-link pattern took up an entire wall, right next to a double-tiered rack of floggers and whips.

Jase walked up to the rope web and ran his hand over it. “I don’t remember seeing this before.”

“That’s one of the improvements. The others are…” Robert pointed up, indicating a collection of hooks and O-rings bolted to the ceiling. “We’ve had the ceiling reinforced for suspension.”

“Very cool. Although I don’t think Jordan’s ready to be hoisted fifteen feet in the air, are you, Jordan?”

God, he actually expected me to talk standing here in the middle of all this? Breathe, dammit. I glanced up at the suspension points, my insides going as wobbly as fresh Jello. Heights didn’t usually bother me. I spent most of my life playing on elevated stages where my likelihood of falling was nil. But if anyone lost their grip on the suspension rope, I’d end up with a broken neck, if I survived at all. “I, um, I’d rather not, Jase.”

“Try the web, darling,” Renee said, coming up behind me. I thought she was about to lay her hands on my shoulders, but the possessive glow flickering in Jase’s eyes warned her off. “It’ll hold you up beautifully. Just fall into it and drift off to that lovely forever place.”

Jase held out his hand, and I went to him. I let him shove me up against the web, my fingers threading through the rope, holding tight. It had enough give to hold my weight, and if I shut my eyes and let myself go limp, it was almost like falling face first into my mattress at home.

Jase pushed his hard cock against the small of my back. Why did he still have his jeans on—and that fucking decadent leather coat? “Shirt off,” he said. “Don’t turn around.”

I kept my grip on the web with one hand while I unbuttoned my shirt with the other. Slid it off my shoulders—or rather, Jase did. He had his hands in my hair again, tying it back with a leather thong, and when he pushed me up against the web this time, all I felt was the soft rasp of cotton on my back. “Shall I tie you? Or do you think you can hold on?”

“I, uh…” I gave the web a couple of hard tugs. It wasn’t going anywhere. “I’m good.”

He buried his face in my neck, my hair, inhaling deeply. I let my head fall back, allowing him full access to my throat. He licked his way along the pulse in my carotid, got a piece of skin between his teeth, and bit down hard.

Hard enough to leave a mark—I hoped, I hoped.

I groaned when he moved away, darting a glance over my shoulder. He rummaged in his bag, drawing out a coil of long, sleek, deadly-looking leather. One of the singletails he’d shown me at his apartment the other day. “One more time—what’s our safeword?” he said.

“Violet.”

“Do you want this?”

How could he even ask, when I was already trembling, dying for him to touch me? To fuck me or flog me. To grind me into nothing and bring me back to life again. “God, Jase, just do it. Whatever you’re gonna do…”

“Say it,” he growled. “Tell me you want it.”

“I-I want it. Want you.”

“Good.” He nuzzled my throat again, then grabbed me by the chin, those icy eyes of his nearly melting me. “I’m gonna hurt you now. And yes—everyone is watching.”

And with that, he stepped back and laid his whip across me.

TNA: How is collaborative writing easier and/or more difficult than writing a book on your own? Do you find your style and character voices change at all when writing with someone else?

Cat: No, not really. In fact, I think Lori’s and my voices mesh pretty well. Most people can’t tell which of us wrote what, which is, IMHO, the highest compliment a writing partnership can receive.

And “What Lori said” about the perks of co-writing. Two filthy minds are definitely better than one!

L.A.: I’m just going to start putting “What Cat said” in every answer, because she nailed it. LOL As far as collaborative vs solo, the biggest perk of co-writing is when you get stuck, you have someone who knows the story/characters as well as you do who can help you get unstuck. Plus, with the way Cat and I write – alternating chapters – there’s a certain little thrill in getting a shiny new chapter in your inbox, and then saying “Oh, it’s gonna be like that? OH IT’S ON NOW…” and writing the next one. It’s kind of this playful back and forth thing, trying to pull the rug out from under each other, and in doing so, we create all kinds of tension between the characters.

So basically, co-writing rules.

TNA: I know this is sort of like asking you to name your favorite child, but of all the books you’ve each written, do you have a favorite? If so, which and why?

Cat: I’ll have to go with Guarded. I got so swept up in the characters and the story, I got a little depressed for a few days after we typed “The End.”

L.A.: Oh man, I couldn’t choose between the books we’ve written. I love Jase and Jordan, but I love the SEALs too. DON’T MAKE ME CHOOSE!!

TNA: If you could bring one of your characters off the page and into the real world, whom would you most like to spend time with, and what makes him/her someone you think you could be friends with?

Cat: Not sure I’d want to hang out with Jordan – he’s a bit intense for me. Jase, OTOH – yeah, we could do lunch. I’d love to pick his brain about his days as a submissive. (And actually, that’s a story Lori and I are kicking around – so stay tuned!)

L.A.: Jase is really laidback, so I could definitely hang out with him. Jordan, too, if he was duly restrained. Or occupied. By, say, polishing a pair of boots…

TNA: Would you care to share a little bit of information on any of your current WIPs with us?

Cat: I’m currently finishing up TAP OUT, the third book in my Bannon’s Gym series for Samhain, then Lori and I have a few new irons in the fire. *rubs hands together*

L.A.: I have…my God, so many things in the works, all of which I’m trying to wrap up so Cat and I can go on to our next project. I’m currently working on a Klondike Gold Rush era steampunk novella, a lesbian military romance, a contemporary bisexual ménage, and a sequel to Aleksandr Voinov’s Dark Soul series. Needless to say, it’s keeping me busy.

Cat: As usual, Lori makes me look like a slacker.

TNA: And finally, would you kindly share with us all the places we can find you on the internet?

Cat’s Bio: Cat Grant lives by the sea in beautiful Monterey, California, with one persnickety feline and way too many books and DVDs. When she’s not writing, you can usually find her watching movies or TV (Supernatural and The Vampire Diaries are among her favorite shows), singing along to her favorite band (30 Seconds to Mars), or fantasizing about kinky sex with Michael Fassbender and/or Jared Leto.

Here’s Cat’s various hideouts on the Internet:

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Amazon Author Page | You can contact her directly at: cat@catgrant.com

Subscribe to her newsletter here.

~*~

L.A.’s Bio: L.A. Witt is an abnormal M/M romance writer currently living in the glamorous and ultra-futuristic metropolis of Omaha, Nebraska, with her husband, two cats, and a disembodied penguin brain that communicates with her telepathically. In addition to writing smut and disturbing the locals, L.A. is said to be working with the US government to perfect a genetic modification that will allow humans to survive indefinitely on Corn Pops and beef jerky. This is all a cover, though, as her primary leisure activity is hunting down her arch nemesis, erotica author Lauren Gallagher, who is also said to be lurking somewhere in Omaha.

Website | Twitter: @GallagherWitt | Blog

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All Romance Ebooks, RJ Scott

In Honor Of Autism Awareness Month, TNA Is Pleased To Be Participating In RJ Scott’s Virtual Tour


According to a California Health and Human Service Agency survey of developmental disabilities conducted in 2003, Autism is the single fastest growing developmental disorder, with a 1,148% growth rate. (Source). As April is Autism Awareness Month, and author RJ Scott has a very personal passion for the subject of Autism Awareness, she invited authors, publishers, and bloggers to join in on a hop to shed a little light on the various spectrums and symptoms of the disorder, as well as to celebrate the unique and diverse challenges of those who are afflicted.

Other than a child with ADHD (who provides hours of fun when he doesn’t get his meds!), I’ve been very blessed to have three otherwise healthy children. The reason I wanted to participate in this hop, however, is to have the opportunity to talk with my daughter, Rachel, who is eighteen-years-old and will begin her college career in the fall, majoring in psychology with a focus toward a master’s degree in Occupational Therapy, specifically in working with special needs children.

For the entirety of her high school career, she participated in peer tutoring and the Best Buddies program, which is where she discovered a passion for mentoring “her kids”, and even though she graduated in December, she still goes to volunteer in the classroom when work permits. Am I a proud mom? Why, yes, yes, I am, and this is why I elected to interview my baby girl about her work with the Autistic children in her class. I hope you can sense the love she has for her kids and for the work she does.

THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED

Mom: Tell me about your Autistic students. How many of them are there in your class, and how do they differ on the Autism spectrum in terms of communication and interaction?

Rachel: There are three Autistic students in my peer tutoring class. They are all unique in their own way. Zach, who is the youngest, is the most severe in terms of interaction. He won’t look you in the eyes, does not like to be touched, and sometimes has a hard time making conversation. If you get him talking about something that he’s interested in, then he can carry on a very good conversation.

Nick, on the other hand, is quite a talker, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that he is a good communicator. He loves talking to people but has difficulty listening to what others have to say to him. A lot of the time, he’s basically carrying on a conversation with himself!

Finally, there’s Matt. Matt is 20-years-old but remains at the high school level. He is like Zach in that he does not like any eye contact or touching of any kind. And now that I think about it, I have to say he is even more difficult to communicate with than Zach. Matt gets very frustrated easily, especially when being told what to do. A few minutes in a quiet room will usually do the trick when he gets too overwhelmed.

Mom: What are some of the outward signs of their Autism?

Rachel: They each have things that make it easy to tell that they are Autistic. All of them avoid eye contact, and don’t particularly like to be touched. They all have little tics of movements that they cannot seem to control. For example, Zach randomly throws his hands behind his head and squeals.

Mom: Do you interact and communicate with each of your Autistic students in different ways? Do you find you have to customize your interaction with each of them individually in order to succeed in reaching them?

Rachel: Absolutely. With Zach, I have to stay a comfortable distance away and speak very clearly and calmly. In order to communicate with Zach well, I have to find ways to get his attention by talking about things he enjoys, like reading.

Matt is sometimes very difficult to interact with. But again, I have to give him his space and speak calmly. It is important to make him feel as calm as possible to avoid an outburst.

With Nick, I just have to be a very good listener and not get too frustrated when he cuts me off or won’t listen to me. He just needs reminded every once in a while that he needs to focus on what I am saying.

Mom: What are some of the specialized learning projects you use to help them with their schoolwork?

Rachel: We do a lot of interactive activities. For example, we will have them talk to someone new each day about what we did the day before, or what we will do the next weekend. This helps them practice their communication skills. We once did an exercise where we each had a partner standing a few feet in front of us, and one partner would begin walking towards the other. When the partner got as close as the other partner was comfortable with, the other partner would put their hand up to tell them to stop. This was to teach them how everyone needs personal space, and some need more than others. We also take walks around the school every day just so that the kids can decompress a bit.

Mom: Have you ever witnessed any incidents where your Autistic students were being teased/bullied, or are the students in your school much more evolved than that?

Rachel: I am pleased to say that I have never seen any of the kids being teased or bullied. The kids at FHS are so kind to them.

Mom: How does your school work to integrate your students into the rest of the student body? Do they get special jobs and assignments to help them feel a sense of responsibility?

Rachel: Best Buddies is a club where students get to do fun activities and outings with the special needs kids. It is amazing the amount of joy that club brings to the kids. They all have responsibilities throughout the school day. They collect recycling, dust lockers, help in the cafeteria, or deliver mail for teachers.

Mom: If you could sum up in a few sentences what makes you love your Autistic students, what would you say?

Rachel: It is hard to sum it up in just a few sentences, because I love them all for different reasons. But the one reason that I love all of them is for how genuine they are. With them, what you see is what you get. They all have such kind hearts. Their innocence and genuine personalities make them impossible not to love.

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All Romance Ebooks, Perie Wolford, Reviewed by Tina, Self-Published

Perie Wolford’s “Turning 16” Is An Homage To John Hughes – Reviewed by Tina


“That’s why they call them crushes. If they were easy, they’d call ‘em something else.”– John Hughes


Title: Turning 16 (Turning 16, #1)

Author: Perie Wolford

Publisher: Self-Published

Pages/Word Count: 192 Pages

Rating: 4 Stars

Blurb: Sam never liked his birthdays because not a single one of them was happy… When he turned 1, he fell face-down into his birthday cake; when he turned 5, he broke his left arm and when he turned 7, he broke his right arm and his left leg; when he turned 12, his house caught fire. Now Sam is about to turn 16 and he is dreading the day. The only birthday wish he has is for Jake who is the Mr. Popular of Arcadia High to even acknowledge his existence, or better yet give him a happy-birthday kiss.
But Sam knows that it’s not gonna happen. Or is it?
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All Romance Ebooks, Sara York, Self-Published

Sara York Contrasts Love And Religion In “Pray the Gay Away” – Reviewed by Jackie


“The gods play no favorites.” ― Charles Bukowski


Title: Pray the Gay Away (A Southern Thing #1)

Author: Sara York

Publisher: Self-Published

Pages/Word Count: 314 Pages

Rating: 5 Stars

Blurb: Star football player, Jack Miller, had it all. The perfect family, looks, girls hanging on his every word, and the respect of most people in his town. But one thing was missing–a man to be his own.
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All Romance Ebooks, K.A. Merikan, Self-Published

A K.A. Merikan Two-fer Review – “House Warmer” And “An Onanist’s Journey to Reclaiming His Seed”


“Writing is seduction.” – Stephen King


Title: House Warm’d (XXX’d #4)

Author: K.A. Merikan

Publisher: Self-Published

Pages/Word Count: 11,000 Words

Rating: 4 Stars

Blurb: — How to make a house a home —
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All Romance Ebooks, Reviewed by Jackie, Self-Published, Silvia Violet

Silvia Violet’s “Willing Hands” – Jackie Says It’s A Highly Recommendable Read


“…this world is just a place for us to learn that we need each other more than we want to admit.” ― Richelle E. Goodrich



Title: Willing Hands (Wild R Farm #5)

Author: Silvia Violet

Publisher: Silvia Violet Books

Pages/Word Count: 220 Pages

Rating: 4 Stars

Blurb: Will has a temper as wild as the bear he holds inside. Normally he’s an easy-going, caring guy, but if someone crosses him, he uses his claws and shifter strength to set them straight. His temper ruined his chance at the career he wanted, but now he’s working at Wild R Farm, enjoying the camaraderie and longing for more with one special man.
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Absolute Write, All Romance Ebooks, Reviewed by Tina

“Underground Erotica” – An Absolute Write Anthology Review Of The M/M Stories


“There are as many forms of love as there are moments in time.” – Jane Austen


Title: Underground Erotica

Authors: Absolute Write Anthology

Publisher: Lori Witt

Pages/Word Count: 163 Pages

Rating: 4.25 Stars

Blurb: Welcome to the Underground!
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All Romance Ebooks, Carter Quinn, Reviewed by Tina, Self-Published

Love Helps A Man Find His Way “Out of the Blackness”


“The marks humans leave are too often scars.” – John Green


Title: Out of the Blackness

Author: Carter Quinn

Publisher: Self-Published

Pages/Word Count: 361 Pages

Rating: 5 Stars

Blurb: A childhood of abuse has left Avery so physically and emotionally scarred he believes he shouldn’t be alive. His only sanctuary has been his relationship with his older foster brother Sam. Avery finally lets Sam convince him to start therapy to help overcome his crippling anxiety, but even that can’t prepare him for the upheaval caused by meeting Noah Yates.
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All Romance Ebooks, Josephine Myles, Self-Published

Please Welcome Josephine Myles And A Mini-view, Excerpt, And Giveaway That’s “Tailor Made”



TNA: We’re so pleased to have Josephine Myles dropping in as our guest today on her blog tour to promote the re-release of Tailor Made, in anticipation of the long awaited sequel, Custom Fit. Take it away, Jo!

Josephine: Hi, Lisa, thanks for inviting me over to chat about Tailor Made. :)

TNA: What made you decide to revisit this particular book?

Josephine: It had always been my intention to write a sequel, but I decided I wanted to wait to do so until it was out of the original two year contract with Amber Quill Press. This meant I could get a sexy new cover and a strong series identity for the two books.

Revisiting Tailor Made was essential to make sure I was prepared for starting the sequel (Custom Fit, out in the summer!), but I’d have wanted to anyway before self-publishing it. I felt like readers deserved the best I could write, and so I went through it all again with a fine-tooth comb, and paid for a professional proof-read to catch any errors that slipped through in the first edition.

TNA: As you went through your revisions, what things stood out upon revisiting that you wish you’d done differently in its original inception?

Josephine: Honestly, apart from minor things like word choice, there wasn’t anything I wanted to change. I’d thought initially that I might want to stretch things out and add a scene or two of Felix and Andrew getting to know each other before the first sex scene, but when I read it again I changed my mind. I think I’d just been influenced by a couple of reviewers who questioned how quickly Andrew gave in to Felix’s seduction. Reading it, though, I thought that was perfectly in character for a horny teenage lad, even if he was intending to save himself for Mr. Right.

I suspect some readers look for reflections of how they would have behaved in a situation, and I think men tend to be a lot less picky than women are about who they will sleep with, and how soon they’ll do so after meeting someone. Please feel free to argue with me on that in the comments—I know some men and women are different!—but as a general theory I’ve found it backed up by most men (gay, straight and bi) that I’ve spoken to.

Basically, I want my characters to read like “real”, everyday men, not like some idealised version of them. While I know I could appeal to more readers if I made them closer to the romance novel ideal, I have to write what feels true to me.

TNA: Did Felix and Andrew stand the test of time, did you find things about them you felt needed changed and/or perfected?

Josephine: I was very happy with both their characters, but what I did take issue with was my tendency to use overly complicated words and phrasing. While I could accept Felix using some pretentious words (he’d been studying academic texts about art, after all), I just couldn’t see them being part of Andrew’s vocabulary. I had him saying things like “dissonance” when he could have just said “clash”. That all needed cleaning up.

TNA: How did you come up with the idea for the story when you wrote it?

Josephine: The original prompt was for a college story, and I remember thinking I’d write one about an art student and a lecturer at university, because I thought the whole transgressive thing would be fun to write. But for some reason the arrogant art lecturer just wasn’t an appealing character, and I ended up making him into Saul, the antagonist in Tailor Made. Proof that even bad ideas have some uses!

Andrew was created as the perfect foil for Felix. Someone who values craft over the pretentiousness of conceptual art. At the time of writing I was frustrated at not being able to use my sewing machine, as I’d moved to a very small house in order to save money when making the gamble of going full time as a writer. There was no room to set up even a small table for dressmaking! I think Andrew sprung from that frustration, and my annoyance at myself for not having pursued dressmaking more seriously when I was younger.

TNA: Do you believe art should challenge perception and push the envelope?

Josephine: No. My issue there is with the word “should”. I take a craftman’s approach to art and I think there’s absolutely nothing wrong with art intended purely for aesthetic appreciation, or indeed in art that is functional—making beautiful furniture, for instance. I don’t object to conceptual and abstract art per se, but I get annoyed when pretentious academic types hold that up as the purest form of art there is. I’m more a follower of William Morris and the Arts and Crafts movement, who believed things should be both beautiful and useful.

Thanks for having me over to chat, Lisa, and I’ll see you at GRL in October!

Jo x

TNA: Thanks for being here, Jo, see you in Chicago!

BLURB: When Mr. Wrong measures up just right!

College tart Felix McAvoy is used to causing a stir with his conceptual art pranks, but for his final show, he’s planning something even more outrageous. In a last ditch attempt to seduce his jaded tutor, Felix plans to wear the canvas in a subversive display. However, if he’s going to do this right he’ll need a tailor-made canvas suit. Fortunately, he knows just the tailor to turn to for the favour—and Felix isn’t shy about offering favours of a very different kind in return.

First year fashion student Andrew Wheeler knows Felix by reputation only—and plans to keep things that way. Andrew’s determined to save himself for the man of his dreams, and Felix couldn’t be more different from his ideal Mr. Right. There’s only one use Andrew will contemplate for Felix’s body: a model for his end of year project. Trouble is, it’s going to involve a lot of close contact with a nearly naked Felix, and Andrew’s never had temptation quite so close at hand!

Buy Tailor Made in all e-formats at:

EXCERPT: Chapter Two

Felix was halfway down the art block corridor before he realised he hadn’t peered into Saul’s office like he usually did. He halted for a moment, contemplating heading back. Saul was usually in his office at this time of day, and Felix could always come up with some kind of excuse to monopolise his attention for a few minutes. But nah, he’d give up the pleasure today. After all, Felix was on his way to sort out his sexy suit, which would definitely catch Saul’s attention in the long run. Actually, doing it naked would have been the best bet, but nudity had been banned, just like the bodily fluids—which, contrary to what Andrew thought, hadn’t been entirely down to Felix’s coloured-watermasquerading-as-piss iceberg.

Last year, Grant deHavilland had grossed out every last exhibition goer by sitting at a wooden desk eating out of a catering sized jar of apple sauce, and then throwing up into a bowler hat after every fifth mouthful. The stench had been unbelievable. He’d called it “Magritte, Reconstituted.” Felix still hadn’t quite been able to figure out what the purpose was behind that little piece of subversion, but if it had been to annoy the university management, it had worked like a treat.

As he crossed the deserted quadrangle on his way to the textiles block, Felix wondered what on earth had possessed him to sign up for a degree at an institution that prided itself on conceptual art. He knew he’d been swayed by the sheer beauty of Bath the city, but he’d been offered other places. He could have chosen a university where his drawing and painting skills would have been fostered, but instead he found himself desperately thinking up new ways to shock the tutors out of their jaded, “seen it all before” attitude. What had been fun in his first year was becoming more and more like hard work, and the thought of moving to London and trying to make a career out of more of the same didn’t exactly have him jumping up and down with enthusiasm. Try as he might, he just couldn’t picture himself hanging out with Damien Hirst and Tracy Emin, swapping notes on the best way to pickle a sheep or embroider the names of all your past shags onto a tent.

Still, if there was one thing he was looking forward to, it was seeing Andrew again. Felix hadn’t been able to get the bloke out of his head all day. Every time he moved, his unfamiliar underwear reminded him of their impending meeting. How the hell did anyone ever concentrate on sport, wearing a jockstrap? There’s no way he’d be able to keep his mind on the ball—not unless it was one of the pair
currently being cradled by the silky fabric.

This time, when he pushed his way through the textile studio door, Andrew was waiting, leaning against the wall looking all neat and buttoned up in his blue shirt and flawless black jeans.

“Your top male model has just entered the building,” Felix announced as he twirled on the spot. Unfortunately he misjudged the closeness of one of the tables and ended up bumping into it. “Whoops! Better get practicing those moves, hadn’t I? Will you be wanting any mincing, because it may not come naturally but I reckon I can have a good stab at it.” He demonstrated with a hand on his hip and a pronounced pout.

Andrew’s lips gave a twitch, just like they had yesterday. God, Felix wanted to make this man smile. He’d look amazing happy. Everyone did though, didn’t they? Well, except Saul, who had smouldering arrogance down to a T and only ever gave cruel smiles.

“Let’s leave the catwalk practice till nearer the time. You don’t need to do anything outrageous.”

“But outrageous is my middle name, Andy-baby.”

“Would you stop calling me that!”

Felix grinned. “Whatever you say, sugarplum.” He shrugged off his leather jacket and threw it on the table. “Now, where do you want me? And I must warn you, I didn’t manage to get hold of a vest.”

Andrew huffed, but then drew in a sharp breath as Felix stripped off his T-shirt.

Felix turned around slowly, giving Andrew time to get a good look at his torso. It was a pleasant view, even if he did say so himself. Felix might not be a bulked up gym bunny, but he had a set of weights and made sure he put in a good hour’s work out a couple of times a week, and walking up and down all the bloody hills in Bath took care of the rest of his fitness regime. God knew how anyone ever managed to get fat in a city like this. Starving, carless art students certainly couldn’t afford to.

When Felix turned back to face Andrew he was delighted to see the want written plain in those eyes. They glittered with it, dark and demanding. Felix started on his jeans, flipping the buttons slowly, teasing.

“Please tell me you’re at least wearing underpants,” Andrew rasped, his voice a cracked parody of its usual tone.

“Oh yeah. Well, kind of. I think you’d have to classify them as that.”

“Bugger.”

© Josephine Myles – February 2014

The Giveaway: THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED

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All Romance Ebooks, Marshall Moore, Reviewed by Kim

Marshall Thornton’s “The Ghost Slept Over” – In Which Things Aren’t How They Seem


“I would love to believe that when I die I will live again, that some thinking, feeling, remembering part of me will continue.” – Carl Sagan


Title: The Ghost Slept Over

Author: Marshall Thornton

Publisher: Self-Published

Pages/Word Count: 236 Pages

Rating: 4.5 Stars

Blurb: When failed actor Cal Parsons travels to rural New York to claim the estate of his famous and estranged ex-partner he discovers something he wasn’t expecting…the ghost of his ex! And, worse, his ex invites Cal to join him for all eternity. Now. As Cal attempts to rid himself of the ghost by any means he begins to fall for the attractive attorney representing the estate.

Will Cal be able to begin a new relationship or will he be seduced into the ever after?
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All Romance Ebooks, Jordan L. Hawk, Self-Published

“Eidolon” – In Which Valentine’s Day Just Got A Little More Creepy


“The very essence of romance is uncertainty.” ― Oscar Wilde


Title: Eidolon (Whyborne & Griffin, #1.5)

Author: Jordan L. Hawk

Publisher: Self-Published

Pages/Word Count:

Rating: 5 Stars

Blurb: Griffin Flaherty wants nothing more than to create a perfect Valentine’s Day for his lover, Dr. Percival Endicott Whyborne. Dinner at a fancy restaurant, an evening at the theater, and a romantic interlude at home should do the trick.
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All Romance Ebooks, Lisa Worrall, White Stiletto Press

Lisa Worrall’s Marshalls Park Series Comes To A Perfect End


“I never thought getting arrested would be the best thing that ever happened to me, but it was, because it brought me you.” – Lisa Worrall


Title: The Marshalls Park Series #8-10

Author: Lisa Worrall

Publisher: White Stiletto Press

Rating: 5 Stars

Blurb: Monty’s Trick or Treat: Everyone has been the victim of Chris’ pranks in the run-up to Halloween, and he doesn’t appear to be in a hurry to stop. Despite almost getting one of the park’s employees fired.

Finn decides Chris needs to be taught a lesson and what better way than to give him a taste of his own medicine? With a little help from his friends, he sets about organizing the prank to end all pranks – on an epic scale – using Chris’ biggest fear against him!
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All Romance Ebooks, Jordan L. Hawk, Self-Published

“Destroyer Of Worlds” – Is It What You’ve Been Waiting For?


“Pull up a chair. Take a taste. Come join us. Life is so endlessly delicious.” ― Ruth Reichl


Title: Destroyer of Worlds (SPECTR #5)

Author: Jordan L. Hawk

Publisher: Self-Published

Pages/Word Count: 97 Pages

Rating: 5 Stars

Blurb: After becoming possessed by the vampire spirit Gray, telekinetic Caleb Jansen thought his situation couldn’t get any worse. But that was before Graham Forsyth, head of SPECTR’s sinister Research Division, took him into custody.
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All Romance Ebooks, Amazon Digital Services, Leighton Rose, Self-Published

True Love Makes Its Way “Back to You”


“Some things just couldn’t be protected from storms. Some things simply needed to be broken off…Once old things were broken off, amazingly beautiful things could grow in their place.” ― Denise Hildreth Jones


Title: Back to You

Author: Leighton Rose

Publisher: Self-Published

Pages/Word Count: 195 Pages

Rating: 5 Stars

Blurb: When two stubborn boys fall in love there are bound to be fights, but when those fights become the norm and there are more bad times than good, is love enough of a reason to stay?
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All Romance Ebooks, Amazon Digital Services, Leighton Rose, Self-Published

Leighton Rose Is Here Today To Talk “Back To You” And Give Away A Couple Of Copies!



First off, I want to thank Lisa for inviting me to be a guest today here at The Novel Approach! Being a self-published author, it’s super important to have the support of such wonderful people and blogs, and I can’t thank them enough!

I’d like to start by telling you a little bit about myself and then I will give you a little insight into my boys and their story. I’m a thirty-year-old single mother to a six-year-old little boy with an imagination that blows my mind. He has me laughing on a daily basis, he keeps me on my toes for sure, and even though some days I swear I’m ready to trade him in, I could never actually do it because then who would keep me laughing? I spend more time on Facebook than I should, I’m addicted to Candy Crush and Subway Surfers, and when I sit down to read, the only thing that I should be interrupted for is if someone is bleeding. LOL (I’m really not joking about that!)

I love to watch movies and have a slight addiction to The Hunger Games (I could seriously watch it every single day and never get sick of it!) because I think Josh Hutcherson and Jennifer Lawrence are both gorgeous, and I wouldn’t say no to either one of them! The Notebook is my favorite love story movie, and I think the second chance romance aspect is the main reason. No one should ever have to live their entire life without their soul mate and I think that in the end, true love will always win.

I love second chance romances more than almost any other type of story. There’s something about them that just draws me in. Something always gets in the way, either one of the characters makes a terrible mistake or sometimes life just makes things impossible for the two people to be together at the time, because let’s face it, life isn’t always fair. But when you’ve met The One, you never forget them. Ever. So you work your way through life day-by-day until something brings you back together and you have to fight for that love, because if love is worth having, it’s worth fighting for. There’s usually angst and years of built up emotion ready to pour out, and I think that’s why I love these types of stories so much, so when I sat down to write this book, I had no doubts that was what I was going to write.

Back to You started off as a piece of Twilight fan fiction. A one-shot, they call it, because it was just one scene but when I wrote the piece, I didn’t envision my characters as Twi characters. However, that was my creative outlet at the time so I made it work. Then my boys kept talking to me and people kept demanding that I write more, but I didn’t want to write more as fan fiction because I felt like I was being untrue to the boys in my head, so I edited my piece and it became the prologue for Tyler and Alex.

The premise of the story was that sometimes love isn’t enough of a reason to stay. That sometimes two people can love each other more than anything but for so many reasons they just can’t make it work. In Tyler and Alex’s case, it was because near the end they were fighting all the time. Both stubborn boys, neither could ever admit they were wrong and after a couple years of living together, never having dated anyone else, I think their youth and inexperience with relationships got the best of them. Alex decided he had to leave to save them both but pushed that decision aside to give them both one last good memory before he left.

I don’t want people to get the wrong idea about my Alex. He’s got the biggest heart and his love for Tyler never died, but Alex has a bad habit of making decisions that he thinks are best for the people he loves without consulting them, and my biggest concern with this book is that people won’t understand him and will blame him for everything. I hope that by the end of the book I have redeemed him, and that people love him as much as Tyler and I do.

Then there are the secondary characters, Riley and Donny. Alex and Tyler try to move on, but it doesn’t work out so well for them, and Riley and Donny get caught in the crossfire. The only thing these guys did wrong was to fall in love with men who weren’t emotionally available. I’m already getting comments about how much people love my secondary boys and how they want them to have their happily-ever-after. I am in the process of starting their story, which will be book two in the series.

But for now, here’s an excerpt from the prologue of Back to You:

Alex

“I don’t fucking know what you want from me anymore!” I screamed at Tyler as I turned to walk out of the bedroom, slamming the door hard to emphasize my point.

I was so sick of everything: the arguing, the screaming, the accusations. Honestly, I didn’t even know what we were fighting about anymore. The point was we were fighting… again. I barely made it halfway down the hall before Tyler caught me and spun me around to face him.

“I just want a fucking answer! Seriously, is it that hard to comprehend?” he spat angrily at me.
Had he even asked me a question in all of the yelling? I wasn’t sure anymore. Apparently my brain filter malfunctioning was enough to set him off again.

“What is it now, Alex? Not paying attention to me again? Are you fucking kidding me?”

Oh. I must’ve said that out loud. “With all the yelling and accusations in there I wasn’t aware there was a question to answer! Seriously, Tyler, we can’t keep doing this. It’s just not working for me anymore.” There, I’d said it and it had just about killed me to say the words.

The look on his face went from angry to desperate in a matter of seconds and I felt like such a fucking bastard. “You’re right, baby; of course you’re right,” he told me, the fight instantly draining out of him.

“I’m so, so sorry…” He kept repeating it over and over, but I honestly didn’t hear it as my eyes had zeroed in on his face and the fact that there was a steady stream of tears running down it.

We’d had our fair share of fights over the past three years, which was to be expected when you had two very dominant personalities in the same relationship, but in all that time, I’d never seen Tyler cry and my heart ripped in two as I witnessed it happening. He just looked so defeated.

It was beyond agonizing to realize that all of our recent fighting and screaming and just pure lack of concern for each other’s feelings in the past few months had broken my boy down so much that he’d resorted to crying.

Tyler wrapped his arms around my waist, holding me close to him. I knew it was wrong; I shouldn’t have let him do it. It really wasn’t right to give him false hope. I should’ve been stronger than that, but I just wasn’t. I needed him in that moment so I slipped my arms around his neck and nuzzled into him, inhaling deeply, trying to imprint his scent into my memory so that I’d never forget it. He sighed a little and relaxed into me so that I was practically holding him up.

“I love you, Alex.” His whispered words made my heart clench. “I love you so fucking much.”

“I know, Ty, I know,” I assured him as I pulled back to stare deeply into his emerald green eyes. “Me too…”

And I did. I loved him so fucking much that at times it felt like I couldn’t breathe without him, but I’d now figured out that sometimes love just wasn’t enough of a reason to stay. We’d loved each other for so many years, yet we just kept hurting each other, sometimes intentionally, sometimes not, but what it really came down to was the fact that at this point there had been more bad times than good and we just couldn’t keep doing that to each other. I was far from innocent in the situation, but so was he.

It was the hardest decision of my life, but I realized that the next day I would have to leave and let him go, making good on all the times I’d threatened I would.

His next words snapped me out of my daze. “Make love to me, Alex,” he pleaded, planting a passionate kiss on my lips.

My body automatically responded to his, just the way it always had. My fingers ended up tangled in his hair and my tongue slid into his mouth. I wanted to remember him, all of him, no matter how wrong it was of me. We both needed it.

“Okay,” I agreed, without even really thinking about it. I justified my actions by telling myself that it was just one more time and that I owed it to Tyler and myself. Tonight I’d make love to him, hold him tight, and give in just one last time. For a few hours longer, we could stay in our bubble and pretend that tomorrow didn’t exist.

I hope you all enjoyed this little bit of insight into my brain and the extra info on the beginning of Back to You! To thank Lisa and the lovely folks over here at The Novel Approach for their genuine hospitality, I’m offering a copy of the e-book to two lucky readers.

THIS CONTEST IS CLOSED

Cover by the fabulous G.D. Leigh


Buy from Amazon

Buy from All Romance E-Books Here

Book One in the Second Chances Series by Leighton Rose

When two stubborn boys fall in love there are bound to be fights, but when those fights become the norm and there are more bad times than good, is love enough of a reason to stay?

Alex Parker thinks the best way to save himself and his boyfriend, Tyler Matthews, from any more pain is to leave him and his hometown behind. He finally settles down in Texas and as they both try to move on, it seems like a lost cause.

A tragic turn of events causes Alex to drop everything and head back to Nebraska where he winds up face-to-face with Tyler for the first time since he left two years ago. The spark of attraction is still there, but will these two now grown men be able to overcome the years of guilt, hurt, and broken trust without breaking the bonds of friendship they’ve formed during their time apart in order to get their second chance at love? Only time will tell if their hearts can find their way back to each other.

About the Author:

Leighton Rose is a 30 year old single mother to a 6 year old little monster. She’s lived in the southeast corner of Nebraska her entire life. When she isn’t working her full-time time job, she enjoys watching movies and her favorite television shows which include Supernatural, The Vampire Diaries, and The Originals. She also reads a lot of romance novels and spends far too much time playing Candy Crush on Facebook!

She started out writing fan fiction and has recently begun the journey to writing original M/M fiction. She loves a little heartache in her stories but believes wholeheartedly that true love will always win in the end.

You can friend her on Facebook, e-mail her here, or follow her on Twitter @LeightonRose83. Her blog is http://leightonrose.wordpress.com/ which she updates regularly.

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Abigail Roux, All Romance Ebooks, Eric Arvin, Jason Huffman Black, S.A. McAuley, Self-Published, SJD Peterson, TJ Klune

“Crack the Darkest Sky Wide Open” May Break Your Heart Wide Open Too


“Hearts live by being wounded.” – Oscar Wilde


Title: Crack the Darkest Sky Wide Open

Authors: Eric Arvin, Abigail Roux, SJD Peterson, Jason Huffman Black, S.A. McAuley, TJ Klune

Publisher: Self-Published

Pages/Word Count: 148

Rating: 5 Stars

Blurb: Of humanity there are darker tales. Stories that take some squinting to see through. Unconventional stories. Tales that threaten to break the heart by cruel twists of fate, the dogs of war, or demons that are all too real; whether they be of unrequited love or a karmic slap in the face. Happy endings take a time in coming, and some never arrive. But through all the darkness there is light, a glimmer of hope and wonder…if one has the will to see it.
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All Romance Ebooks, Self-Published, Silvia Violet

Silvia Violet Gives Her Men Some “Sorting Out” To Do


“Courage does not always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, ‘I will try again tomorrow.” ― Mary Anne Radmacher



Title: Sorting Out

Author: Silvia Violet

Publisher: Self-Published

Pages/Word Count: 222

Rating: 5 Stars

Blurb: Jack, Gray, and Mason have accepted that loves comes in many flavors and settled into a three-way relationship. Things haven’t been easy, and now that Mason has gone back to school and Gray is interested in a detective position, Jack is feeling lonely. His lovers aren’t around very often, and he misses lying around in bed, enjoying the benefits of living with two hot men. But Jack has secrets. He’s uncomfortable every time he puts his uniform on. He’s never recovered from seeing Mason held hostage, and he’s no longer sure he was meant to be a cop.
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All Romance Ebooks, Ellis Carrington

Let’s All Get “Stripped Clean” For The Holidays



“Hard is trying to rebuild yourself, piece by piece, with no instruction book, and no clue as to where all the important bits are supposed to go.” ― Nick Hornby


From the title, I hope Stripped Clean: The Escapade Book One means it’s just the beginning of a new series because I want more, and now!!! Can you guess that I liked this book a lot??!!?? I was so happy that I could read a book which I could sink my teeth into. No, it’s not about vampires, just a really meaty, juicy and thoroughly satisfying book.
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All Romance Ebooks, K.A. Merikan

“Special Needs 2” Let’s The Cat Out Of The Bag



“I guess sometimes you have to lie to find the truth.” ― Scott Westerfeld


Wow, this book is all that I expected, and more. Having read the first book, Special Needs, I was left hanging by a cleverly done cliffhanger. To say I was excited to finally get to finish Liam and Ryan’s story is an understatement. I was curious to see where their relationship was going, especially after Ryan’s little secret was out of the bag.

If you haven’t read the first half of this story, this review will most definitely contain spoilers, it can’t be helped. So, do yourself a favor and go read the first book. I promise, you won’t be disappointed.

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