Ethan Stone, Giveaways

Guest Post, Excerpt, and Giveaway: The Racing Hearts Anthology Tour with Ethan Stone

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We’re so please to welcome author Ethan Stone to The Novel Approach today on this special blog tour for the Racing Hearts Anthology, a book of stories lovingly compiled in memory of the late Peter Laybourn, husband of Pride Publishing editor Sue Laybourn. All proceeds from the sale of this book will be donated to further cancer research.

Join me in welcoming contributing author Ethan Stone, and be sure to check out Pride Publishing’s December Giveaway HERE.

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Story ideas come to me in all sorts of ways. Just My Luck had to feature horse racing in some way but there was one problem—I know nothing about that subject. So I did some research and learned that the mafia has often had a hand in the world of horse racing. And that connected to the type of story I usually write—action, mystery and thriller.

One of my main characters is Kieran Jones, a jockey. Part of Kieran’s back story is that he was a foster child adopted by a wealthy man, Andreas Ware. Though I don’t think it’s mentioned in the story, Andreas specifically adopted Kieran because of his small size. Kieran was trained from a young age to do the job, so it’s a good thing he liked it. Originally I envisioned Andreas as being cold and distant treating Kieran more like an employee than a son, but I later changed it so they had a good relationship.

Once I could picture Kieran, thanks to an extensive internet search, I start focusing on the other character. I wanted the two to be physically different so I could use that as a starting point in their relationship. It didn’t take long to find an image to use for him, it was one already in my collection. A man leaning against a truck, with an open jean jacket bearing his hairy chest, a cowboy hat topping off the ensemble. My label for the picture said cowboy cop. And that pretty much describes Sam Shaw.

Sam’s in Portland to do a job and doesn’t want distractions. He heads to a bar hoping to get lucky and while Sam and Kieran are first drawn to each other because of their height differences, it turns out they have a lot more than hot sex in common.

Ethan~

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Racing HeartsAbout Racing Hearts: Totally Entwined Group editor, Sue Laybourn, sadly lost her husband Peter earlier this year, after a brave battle against cancer. In tribute to Peter and to show their support for Sue, these six Pride Publishing authors got together to write this anthology of short stories called Racing Hearts. These stories surround the world of horseracing, a sport which Peter and Sue passionately followed together.

Pride Publishing will be donating its royalties to charity. Proceeds will be going to Cancer Research UK and Prospect Hospice, where Peter was a patient.

Find out more about these charities hereCancer Research UK || Prospect Hospice

Blurbs‘The Lonely Ones’ by Bailey Bradford

Marshall’s all city, and Rex is all cowboy, so it’s no wonder sparks fly when they meet.

Marshall Evans never wanted to inherit his grandfather’s Thoroughbred horse ranch. He doesn’t know much about raising and training racehorses, and he knows even less about the man who left him what he sees as a burden. His grandfather wasn’t a nice man at all, and he left the ranch to Marshall more as a fuck you to the one person who did want the ranch, who had tried to buy it, and had put up with years of verbal and at times, physical abuse, only to have his home yanked out from under his feet. Rex Martinez had only ever had one home, and that was the ranch. Now he was about to lose it.

Marshall arrives in the small town of Erring, NM, only to be confronted by this silently furious man, and together, they’re going to have to work out what to do. The will stipulates that Marshall can’t sell the ranch to Rex, because Allen found out Rex was gay. Rex didn’t know he knew, but the old man had no idea about Marshall since Marshall hadn’t been raised anywhere near him.

It’s not as simple as selling the ranch, either. Marshall thinks it will be, but no. He can’t put Rex out of a home so easily.

‘Racing for Home’ by Morticia Knight

Groom Charlie loves the Piedmont Farms horses—but not nearly as much as the man he can never have, Edward Piedmont.

At the age of twenty-two, Charlie has lived at Piedmont Farms—the largest race horse breeding facility on the east coast—for eight years. For five of those years, he’s been desperately in love with Albert Piedmont’s oldest son, Edward. At one time, he believed Edward’s declarations that they’d be together forever. It was a brutal slap in the face when Edward married a local heiress and moved away to live with her on her family estate. Only his love of the horses, including one in particular, has kept him from complete despair.

Edward knows that horse groom Charlie must hate him after being abandoned when Edward married Alice, but he’d thought he was doing the right thing at the time. After three years of a sham of a marriage, Alice has found someone who she really wants to marry, and Edward is free to divorce her. Edward moves back to Piedmont, desperate to get Charlie back, even if they would still have to hide their love.

Charlie wants to believe that Edward still loves him and that he can believe in him once again. But love between two men in 1912 America is even worse than love between someone of a higher and lower station. Charlie fears that it would never be possible for them to truly have a life together.

Edward’s father, Albert Piedmont, is also hiding. However, his secrets pertain to the possible loss of his once wildly successful horse breeding farm. When everything begins to rapidly crumble, Edward has to make a desperate move to secure a future for him and Charlie before it’s too late.

‘The Secret of Delville Wood’ by Helena Maeve

A handsome, naked man in his bed is the kind of surprise Silas lives for. The dead body hanging outside his window, not so much.

In the shadow of the Great War, three soldiers made a fortune on racetracks either side of the North Sea. Their families thrived with the clandestine passions of youth, wanting for nothing while whole nations suffered the scarcities of peace. By their grace and generosity, Axel, a young man once forced to sell his body, became a champion.

Yet the lure of fast money hides many dark deeds and Pia Eckdahl’s manor on Lake Sågträsk is no exception. Hired to cleanse the Swedish socialite’s house of evil spirits, Nigerian-born Silas doesn’t care much for horses, racing or the affectations of the nouveau-riche. But he does care for Axel. Caught between peddling his heritage for an extortionate sum and investigating a suspicious suicide, Silas soon finds himself delving into a decade-old family secret that could well destroy his lover’s racing future.

‘Keeping the Luck In’ by L.M. Somerton

Since when was a squirrel crossing your path bad luck?

Like his father before him, Rory Ironstone was born and bred to be a blacksmith. Standing six feet five in his socked feet, he’s built like a barn door. He loves his job at Camworth Racecourse forge, tending to the beautiful racehorses and creating ironwork art in his spare time.

Pip Ryder is a summer stable hand and newly qualified vet who longs for someone to love him as much as they do his four-legged charges. He admires Rory from afar, but is too shy to admit his interest goes beyond the anvil.

When the horseshoe above the forge door is knocked off, Rory believes his luck has fallen out. Pip comes to the rescue but when Rory shows more than a platonic interest, he bolts.

Rory is convinced that the only way to re-fill his horseshoe with luck is to get Pip back and keep him.

‘Just my Luck’ by Ethan Stone

Appearances can be deceiving.

Kieran Jones is as used to short jokes as Sam Shaw is to being teased for his height. When they meet at a nightclub there’s an instant attraction, and not just because of the stark difference in their bodies.

After a passionate night, Sam sneaks out, positive he won’t see the hot guy again. Not because he doesn’t want to, but because he’s in town to do a job and he doesn’t need a distraction. He never imagined that growing up on a farm and knowing all about horses would help with his career, but it has and he can’t let anything get in the way.

However, jockey Kieran is connected to Sam’s mission and Sam has a tough choice to make—use Kieran to get it done or walk away. It could spell the end of the relationship before it’s even begun, but a life or death situation makes Sam realize just exactly how much he cares for Kieran and how much he wants a future with him.

‘Horses and Harleys’ by Molly Ann Wishlade

Life’s not just about horses and Harleys, but sometimes you have to get back in the saddle if you want to go along for the ride.

Henry Lockhart is a rich, successful businessman but life at the top can be lonely, especially as he vowed never to fall in love again after a painful bereavement.

Alex Castillo grew up in a small town where small minds made his life a misery. A disastrous love affair with a married man and the recent death of his mother led him to flee his hometown in search of a better life.

When their worlds collide after Alex takes a job as a groom at Henry’s stables, they both know that life will never be the same again.

But they’ve both been hurt, they’ve both suffered loss, shame and regret.

Can they find a way to be together, or will they both ride off into the sunset alone?

BUY LINKS: Pride Publishing || Amazon || Barnes & Noble || All Romance eBooks

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Excerpt – Just My Luck: I knew it the second I spotted him. He was a smaller man, couldn’t have been more than five foot tall. He moved with a smooth, graceful quality that entranced me instantly. At first he was dancing with a small group of women he was clearly friends with, then a guy with blond hair slid in behind my brunette stud. The object of my affection spun around, noticed the intruder, and glared at the guy so strongly it stopped the guy in his tracks. My guy waved him off. The other dude dropped his chin to his chest and sulked away.

The interaction made me laugh. The guy obviously knew what he wanted. The question was if I was his type. He peeled off his sweaty T-shirt and the disparities couldn’t have been more pronounced. In addition to the foot and a half difference between us, I was as hairy as he was smooth. I had wide shoulders and chest that tapered down to muscular abs. His upper body and torso were flat. The distinctions just made me want him more.

Gulping down the whiskey for a bit of liquid courage, I took a deep breath and pressed into the crowd. I kept an eye on my target but froze when another guy stepped up to him. I refused to let it stop me, so I pushed forward until I was right where I wanted to be.

I slid between the new guy and the man I’d targeted. The other guy objected but I faced him and stared him down until he slunk away. It took a minute before the short stud turned and realized he had a new dancing partner. His eyes were level with my chest and they widened as he took me in, scanning upward until meeting mine.

A smile formed on his lips and quickly became a wide grin. “Damn.” His eyes glazed over in what I hoped was attraction.

I shifted closer and he didn’t move away. We shifted in rhythm to the beat, our bodies coming closer until they touched. He turned and I put my hands on his hips, pulling him against me. I was hard as a rock in my tight blue jeans, there was no doubt he had to feel it. Apparently, he didn’t mind because he kept dancing. The skin contact was invigorating and thrilling. I craved more. Wanted to do stuff we couldn’t do on the dance floor.

He stopped moving and I tried to hide my disappointment. “Buy me a drink?”

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Ethan Stone 200x200About the Author: Ethan Stone has recently returned to Oregon and is working on re-growing his web feet. He has been obsessed with two things in his life: books and all things gay. After spending years trying to ignore the voices in his head, he finally decided to sit down and listen to them.

What he discovered was a perfect union of his two obsessions. Ethan used to have a day job that paid the bills. He wore a uniform to work and he looked damn sexy in it. Now he gets to wear sweatpants and watch movies all day.

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JC Wallace

Exclusive Excerpt: Apple Bites Anthology — Edited by Julie Lynn Hayes and Denise L. Wyant

Apple_Bites_Cover_FinalTitle:  Apple Bites: A Romance Anthology

Editors:  Julie Lynn Hayes and Denise L. Wyant

Release Date:  August 25, 2015  

Genre:  Contemporary Romance (both M/M and M/F)

Heat Levels:  Gala to Red Delicious (sweet to spicy)

Blurb:  Back to school takes on new meaning in this collection of eight mini-stories which run the gamut from sweet to spicy! No children in these tales, they’re for adults only! And each one features an apple in some way.

In this mixed bag of apple bites, you’ll find seasoned authors as well as newcomers. Teachers and students. M/M as well as M/F.  There’s something for everyone’s taste.

Going back to school has never been so naughty!

M/M STORIES

JC Wallace – An Officer and a Gentleman (and an Apple)

Holden isn’t sure how much longer he can survive without the man he loves, whose return from a six month deployment has been delayed. On the first day of classes, Professor Holden finds a shiny, red apple on his desk, mocking him. A cruel joke? Or something much more shocking…

Carol Pedroso – Have a Break, Have a…

Kevin is acting principal of another troubled school filled with idiotic teachers. His new husband had been sent half way round the world. Kevin is lonely, hungry, horny, and pissed off at life.

A surprise visitor at lunch time offers Kevin the break he so desperately needs…

Rivals – Julie Lynn Hayes

John and Bryce are heads of competing fraternities at upscale Westover College, as well as fierce rivals. On rush night, John finds Bryce has crashed his soiree, seeking recruits. Verbal swords are thrust. When Bryce pushes John’s buttons, the challenge is on—and winner takes all.

Nephy Hart – Apple for the Teacher

Going back to school is difficult for Rage. He has no reason to think this year won’t be filled with more marginalization and abuse. When his boyfriend gives him an apple for the teacher, Rage has no idea what difference an art project will make, or who will get the apple. 

Perry’s Cherry – Avery Dawes

An unfortunate earthquake shakes Perry from a freshman room to sharing with a grumpy senior. Too bad Nick is so sexy… and sullen. Labor Day finds them both on campus. Nick suggests a trip to a private club. Perry is about to get a college education of another kind…

M/F STORIES 

Elyzabeth M. VaLey – Good Teacher, pet

Ready to start the new school year, Anais’ boyfriend and Dom, Ian, plants the seeds of doubt in her mind. He tells her she’s forgetting something that only the best teachers receive. Ian gives her a lesson and shows how to earn herself a juicy treat.

Cynthia Dawn Griffin – Gatekeeper

Kate loves her job as Head Secretary. The students adore her, calling her Gatekeeper. Kate’s job may be in jeopardy because of her passionate affair with one of the staff, who acts as though it never happened.

Will she be able to focus on her job and win her man back?

Renee Rose – Hot for Teacher

Lucy’s nerves have her wound up for her first Biochemistry 101 lecture. Fiancé Dr. Todd gives his T.A. a wicked distraction. While he tortures Lucy with edging and public arousal, she must somehow get through her class without losing all control.

Amazon Buy Links: Amazon US || Amazon UK || Amazon DE || Amazon CA || Amazon AU

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Excerpt from An Officer and a Gentleman (and an Apple) by JC Wallace

“Welcome back everyone,” I said, laying my papers on the table.

When I looked up, the room was empty. I frowned and checked my watch. Nine AM on the dot. I pulled out my phone to check my schedule. That’s when something red caught my eye.

An apple.

A red apple on the center desk in the front row.

My vision narrowed on the fruit, my pulse raced, my palms sweated, and I couldn’t draw in any air. Was this some kind of sick joke? Most everyone I worked with knew about the “apple story”, as did many of the ROTC soldiers from Jeremy’s base who were currently taking my class. Jeremy would tell that story to anyone who would listen. Could someone from one of my classes have left the apple on purpose?

Who would be so cruel?

A bitter taste filled my mouth as I approached the red symbol of our relationship. From the start, Jeremy had been the consummate future officer, and nothing short of a gentleman. He’d insisted on wooing me properly, and shit if we hadn’t followed the rules of dating step by step. On our first date, we did nothing more than hold hands, the night ending with a brief goodnight kiss. On our second date, we made out on the beach, his hands never straying below my waist—much to my frustration. On our third date, we lay on a blanket beneath the stars, hands exploring, our groins rubbing through our clothes. On our fourth date, we made out on my couch during a hockey game. Shirts removed, shorts shucked to the knees, the blissful heat of my soldier’s mouth had gotten me off within minutes. By the time we’d consummated our relationship (after two whole months!), I’d fallen hopelessly in love with him.

Tears threatened my eyes as the anger drained away. I was overreacting. The apple could have been accidentally left behind by a student in the class before mine. I realized just how tired I was. The excitement of seeing my man at the six month mark had turned to frustration and want and loneliness when his return had been delayed. My hand just wasn’t cutting it anymore. Closing my eyes, I fought to recall the whisper of Jeremy’s fingers over my skin, his breath across my neck, his whispers in my ear, but only my sadness came through.

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Author BioAbout the Author: JC Wallace started writing from a young age, but took a break for marriage, kids, and college (in that order). He recently rediscovered his passion and ventured out into the brave new world of publishing with his short, Waiting for Snow, and his first novel,Curiosity Killed Shaney. At night and on the weekends, JC writes about all things men, believing there is nothing hotter than two men finding and loving one another, whether for a night or forever. An avid reader of M/M romance, JC loves a good twist of a plot, HEA, HFN, or tragic ending. He also writes what his bestie calls HUNK (Happy Until the Next Kidnapping).

In his daytime hours, JC works with individuals with autism and behavior problems. He is owned by a beautiful partner, Speed Demon, three kids, two grandchildren, two dogs and one cat. He lives in the beautiful Adirondack Mountains in Northern NY.

Author Links: Website || Facebook || Twitter

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5 Stars, Andrea Speed, Astrid Amara, Charlie Cochet, Ginn Hale, Jordan Castillo Price, Jordan L. Hawk, KJ Charles, Lou Harper, Nicole Kimberling, Reviewed by Lisa, Rhys Ford, Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Urban Fantasy, Self-Published

Review: Charmed and Dangerous: Ten Tales of Gay Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy – Edited by Jordan Castillo Price

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Title: Charmed and Dangerous: Ten Tales of Gay Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy

Authors: Rhys Ford, Ginn Hale, KJ Charles, Nicole Kimberling, Jordan L. Hawk, Charlie Cochet, Jordan Castillo Price, Andrea Speed, Lou Harper, Astrid Amara

Publisher: Self-Published

Pages/Word Count: 509 Pages

At a Glance: With a lineup like this, how could this anthology have possibly gone amiss?

Reviewed By: Lisa

Blurb: Magic takes many forms. From malignant hexes to love charms gone amok, you’ll find a vast array of spells and curses, creatures and conjurings in this massive collection—not to mention a steamy dose of man-on-man action. Charmed and Dangerous features all-new stories of gay paranormal romance, supernatural fiction and urban fantasy by ten top m/m paranormal authors.

Rhys Ford – Dim Sum Asylum
For Detective Roku MacCormick, working Arcane Crimes is his passion. Now cleared of any wrongdoing for shooting his last partner, MacCormick is given back his badge… as well as a new case and partner. Trent Leonard isn’t exactly what he’d expected, but then nothing in San Francisco’s Chinatown ever is.

Ginn Hale – Swift and the Black Dog
When Jack Swift killed a tyrant and won the revolution he became a national hero. But someone in the new government prefers dead heroes to living, swearing, cynical wizards. Caught between bullets, revenge and desire, Jack had better be swift indeed.

KJ Charles – A Queer Trade
Apprentice magician Crispin Tredarloe returns to London to find his master dead, and his papers sold. Papers with secrets that could spell death. Waste paper seller Ned Hall can’t resist Crispin’s pleading—and appealing—looks. But can the wasteman and the magician prevent a disaster and save Crispin’s skin?

Nicole Kimberling – Magically Delicious
Occult attacks against NIAD agents aren’t remotely Keith Curry’s department. But when his lover, Gunther, is assaulted, Keith refuses to just sit back and fill out paperwork. He’s on the case—even if that means enraging powerful mages, crossing leprechaun picket lines, or braving dinner with Gunther’s goblin parents.

Jordan Castillo Price – Everyone’s Afraid of Clowns
Psychic medium Victor Bayne can spot a ghost any day of the year, but Halloween holds some special surprises. His psych-groupie boyfriend Jacob coaxes him to the location of an old spirit sighting, but they can’t ghosthunt without enduring a cheesy “haunted house” that’s even more disturbing than they realize.

Jordan L. Hawk – The Thirteenth Hex
Hexman Dominic Kopecky doesn’t understand why dashing crow familiar Rook wants his help investigating murder by patent hex. For one thing, Dominic isn’t a witch. For another, the case is already closed—and someone is willing to kill to keep it that way.

Charlie Cochet – The Soldati Prince
Riley Murrough goes from serving lattes to being chased by demons. If that wasn’t bad enough, he bears the mark of a shapeshifter king from a magical realm. Riley’s determined to get answers, but if the demons out for his blood don’t kill him, the urge to strangle the arrogant king might.

Lou Harper – One Hex Too Many
Veteran detective Mike Mulligan is an expert on violent crimes—of the occult variety. He might even be cursed. Detective Hugh Fox is eager to partner up and prove himself, but Mulligan is accustomed to flying solo. Can they trust each other enough to track a killer who’ll stop at nothing, not even summoning a demon?

Andrea Speed – Josh of the Damned vs. the Bathroom of Doom
It’s a boring night at the Quik-Mart for Josh and his friend Doug. Until a vampire with a grudge—and the most adorable backup ever—crashes the store. Can Josh survive the Bathroom of Doom?

Astrid Amara – The Trouble With Hexes
P.I. Tim Keller has a problem. And the only person who can solve it is his ex-boyfriend, Vincent, whose job as a hexbreaker was the reason they broke up. It’s hard admitting he was wrong, especially when coughing up organs. But there’s a missing person to find, a hexmaker to hunt down, and a romance to repair before Tim breathes his last.

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Review: If you’ve looked at this lineup of authors and thought to yourself that there’s no possible way this anthology could fail…you’d be absolutely right. For fans of speculative fiction, Charmed and Dangerous is a collection of wild wonderment that’s been long overdue. This company of ten of the genre’s consummate storytellers dug into their depthless cache of talent to ensure each of these tales lived up to the challenge presented to them: to create new worlds, to introduce both new and familiar characters within the allotted word count, and to do so without sacrificing a single iota of detail, imagination, or compromising the quality of each tale.

Mission: Accomplished

For me to give you a thorough rundown of every story in this omnibus would take more words than I’m positive you’re willing to read from me, so I’m not going to try. There are enough adjectives of a superlative nature in the English language that I can heap on this collection, and upon the heads of its authors, which could, and does, apply to every story in Charmed and Dangerous. Magical and mysterious, clever and charming, witty and wonderful, each of these stories is filled with curses and hexes and creatures of the mythical and metaphysical sort, and, in turn, the authors have given their characters the outlet to explore each of their worlds: where the impossible is made reality, where these men form a bond against a backdrop of danger, action, suspense, humor, dark and deadly magicks, and are given second chances at love.

Nine of these ten tales share a more common thread in their magic, while Charlie Cochet’s The Soldati Prince (what I feel is the most romance-centric of the collection) is a heartfelt and touching shifter fantasy that adheres to the mate bond theme inherent to that sub-genre. A theme it does share with several other of the stories, however, is sacrifice in the name of love. And may have made me a little teary eyed before its end.

From Rhys Ford’s mayhem-laden, humorous and action packed turn at a sex-cursed statue in an Alt U San Francisco Chinatown (which could have come only from the delectably madcap and marvelous mind of this author); to the post-revolutionary dystopian brilliance that is the genius Ginn Hale’s story of betrayal and salvation, Jack Swift and the Black Dog; to the always marvelous KJ Charles’ foray into hex magic and treachery and the promise of a new love (plus, that first line hooked me!); to the hyper-imaginative Nicole Kimberling’s extra-appropriately titled Magically Delicious, and its Lewis Carroll/Midsummer Night’s Dream world filled with leprechauns, mermaid-flesh dealers, goblins, and a deadly pixie dust mystery; to the extraordinarily talented Jordan Castillo Price and my beloved Victor Bayne and Jacob Marks, and a ghost clown all wrapped up inside a misogynist meninist’s wet dream; to the eloquent and fabulous Jordan L. Hawk’s perfect The Thirteenth Hex, a story for which I’m already begging a sequel because these characters and this world are oozing with everything that makes reading a magic unto itself; to the flawless Lou Harper’s unparalleled and all-consuming mystery One Hex too Many–the story that kept me on the hook from start to finish in not only its imaginative world building but in my love of its detectives Mulligan, Fox and Leslie; to the never to be outdone Andrea Speed’s oddball-in-only-the-best-way, strange-things-are-afoot-at-the-Quik-Mart, Josh of the Damned world where anything goes, from vamps to werewolves to zombies to human-sized lizards to giant animate mustaches…well, you get the picture; to the excellent The Trouble With Hexes, Astrid Amara’s beautiful close to the anthology, a story that’s dark magic and pure emotion and encompasses what it means to make the ultimate sacrifice for the one you love—these stories, each and every one of them, deliver a reading experience that’s meant to be devoured and savored all at once.

Whether you’ve only read one of these authors before, or, like me, you’ve read all ten, Charmed and Dangerous is a spec fic lover’s Wonderland… Or whatever it is you call that place we go during those not-quite-aware-of-reality moments when we lose ourselves in a great book.

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You can buy Charmed and Dangerous here:

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Eden Winters, Giveaways, Wilde City Press

Guest Post and Giveaway: The Butt Riders on the Range Blog Tour With Eden Winters

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The Novel Approach welcomes Eden Winters today, on the Butt Riders on the Range blog tour. Enjoy Eden’s guest post, then be sure to click on the Rafflecopter widget below for the chance to win an e-copy of one of the previously published Butt-Thologies (titles and links can be found in Eden’s article).

Good luck!

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Confessions of a Butt Rider…

I’ve a confession to make. Last year I became a Butt Ninja. This year I’m a Butt Rider. How does one become a Butt Ninja or Butt Rider, you ask?

Well, it all started at a little convention in Atlanta, Georgia, called Outlantacon, and an invitation from fellow authors Shae Connor and J.P. Barnaby to come on down!

Little did I know where this innocent-sounding invite would lead.

At the convention I met authors I’d first read in my early days as a M/M reader, when I’d consumed gay romance novels like Skittles: T.C. Blue, Angelia Sparrow, and Kiernan Kelly. I also met a man of fantastic wit and mad blogging skills (and a hilariously entertaining wardrobe of witty T-shirts), Kage Alan.

Now it seems these folks, along with Shae, were involved in a panel when an idea was hatched, an anthology called Butt Pirates in SpaceYou haven’t lived until you’ve heard Kiernan say the title, complete with hand motions.

I read the book, laughed so hard I cried, and was thrilled the next year when I was asked to join them in their next project: Butt Ninjas From Hell. Also joining the roster wereJevocas Green, Ally Blue, and J.P. Barnaby. Next up was Butt Babes in Boyland, a Christmas anthology, and now Butt Riders on the Range, published April 29.

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ButtRidersOnTheRange_cvr_100dpiBlurb:

Do you imagine blazing gun battles, bandits, and saloons with watered-down drinks when you think of cowboys and the West? We don’t. Our minds go right to horse shifters, bull shifters, were-leopards, urban wannabes, an interrupted journey along Route 66, a man of mystery named Dr. Feel-Good, and high noon at the edge of the galaxy! The fourth time’s the charm as the Butt-Thology authors saddle up, ride their men hard, and put ‘em away wet.

Butt Riders on the Range…the bulls aren’t the only ones being grabbed by the horns!

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What’s next? Who knows? But you can bet it’s going to be fun.

My contribution to Butt Riders on the Range is Hooves and Horns, the tale of two rodeo riders who might be more than they seem:

Bull riding champion Kerry Abrams hoped to never see “Diablo” again. He’s the only man to ever successfully ride the beast eight seconds, but Diablo probably says that to all the cowboys.

Armando Castillo’s tired of being told what to do. It’s him and Kerry the rodeo fans come to see, but family prejudices have cost Armando a man who fights as hard as he loves. Time for a little a scheming and planning to win Kerry back, and show his family he’s through with their bullshit, or rather, bull shit. 

And he doesn’t moo during sex. He really doesn’t.

Pick up your copy of Butt Riders on the Range at Wilde City Press.

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Eden WintersAlso by Eden Winters: The Diversion series. Look for the next installment, Redemption, Summer of 2015.

Eden Winters was captivated young by storytelling, and her earliest memories include spinning tales for the family’s pets. Her dreams of writing professionally took a sojourn into non-fiction, with a twelve-year stint in technical documentation.

She began reading GLBT novels as a way to better understand the issues faced by a dear friend and fell in love with the M/M romance genre. During a discussion of a favorite book, a fellow aficionado said, “We could do this, you know.”

Good-bye gears, motors, and other authors’ characters; hello plots and sex scenes. This has resulted in such prize-winning stories as Settling the Score, The Angel of Thirteenth Street, Naked Tails, The Wish, Duet, and the Diversion series.

Somewhat of a nomad, Eden has visited seven countries so far. She currently calls the southern US home, and many of her stories take place in the rural South. Having successfully raised two children, she now balances the day job with hiking, rafting, spoiling her grandchildren, and stalking the wily falafel or elusive tofu pad Thai at her favorite restaurants. Her musical tastes run from Ambient to Zydeco, and she’s a firm believer that life is better with fur kids and Harley Davidsons.

Find her at www.edenwinters.com

On Twitter: https://twitter.com/EdenWinters1

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/EdenWinters

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THE GIVEAWAY:

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5 Stars, Anthology, Giveaways, Kirby Crow, Mythology, Reviewed by Lisa, Riptide Publishing, Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Urban Fantasy, Short Story, Steampunk, Tragic Romance

Spotlight, Review, and Giveaway: Hammer and Bone by Kirby Crow

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Title: Hammer and Bone

Author: Kirby Crow

Publisher: Riptide Publishing

Pages/Word Count: 236 Pages

At a Glance: Haunting and beautiful, Hammer and Bone is an impressive and inspired collection.

Reviewed By: Lisa

Blurb: The purest evil lives in the hearts of men

Carnival mystics. Zombie tribes. Bad magic in the Bayou. Mage-princes, alien cities, and soul-stealing priests. The grim monsters in the worlds of these dark, speculative tales are true horrors, but it’s the people you should fear the most.

People like Michel, a boy pining for his best friend, Ray. But a presence in the swamp calls Michel to avenge another lost love, and he must decide which summons to answer. Or Angelo, a prescient cop who denies his visions until they endanger the man he loves. Or Bellew, an overseer in a shantytown of criminals sheltering a revenant and feeding it from their ranks.

From ruined lands of steam and iron, to haunted Southern forests, to brutal city streets where hope and damnation flow from the same spring, only a few stubborn souls possess the heart to challenge evil on its own terms. Some wield magic, some turn to rage or even love, but the ones left standing will survive only if they find the courage to carve their own paths to freedom.

Even if it means carving through flesh.

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Review: Hammer and Bone is not the book I expected, but in the best way possible. It wasn’t until I’d got to the third chapter, wondering what plot sorcery the author was going to use to tie these divergent chapters together into a cohesive plot, that I finally realized I wasn’t reading a novel at all, but rather, a collection of short stories. Once I figured out I needed to read each piece as an independent story, it made it much easier to appreciate their brilliance and the author’s skill at weaving together rich and layered storylines, even if short.

If I were to attempt to sum up each story in just a few words, it would look a little something like this:

Crank is a bleak world yet offers a glimpse of a hopeful ending.
Hammer and Bone is a survival of the fittest story set in a desolate, dangerous, and dystopian landscape.
Hangfire is nothing less than heartbreaking, easily the most touching story in the collection.
No Gods and No Tomorrows is a fractured Faustian tale, the devil cloaked in righteousness, who attempts to strike a bargain with the wrong victim.
Shadow and Starlight is a self-fulfilled prophecy of horrors, with a great turn-of-the-tables ending.
Knights of the Risen God is a beautifully drawn David and Goliath story of gods and monsters and men.
Crowheart is a story of spiritual mysticism, prejudice, grief and retribution.
Sundog is a story of abuse, hatred and vengeance searching for a happy ending.

What Kirby Crow has done with this anthology is opened up her imagination and let it flow onto the page. The prose is at times sheer poetry, the imagery stark and striking, the settings foreign and familiar, the allegory and fantastical elements a backdrop for the best and worst of men and magic. These are not stories to be read in hopes of finding romance and happy endings. They are stories to be savored for the love of words and the skillful crafting of short stories that are complete in their telling.

Haunting and beautiful, Hammer and Bone is an impressive and inspired collection.






You can buy Hammer and Bone here:

All Romance eBooks

All Romance eBooks

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Author BioAbout the Author: Kirby Crow is an American writer born and raised in the Deep South. She is a winner of the EPIC Award and the Rainbow Award, and is the author of the bestselling “Scarlet and the White Wolf” series of fantasy novels. Kirby and her husband and their son share an old, lopsided house in the Blue Ridge with a cat. Always a cat.

Her published novels are:

Prisoner of the Raven (historical romance)
Scarlet and the White Wolf: The Pedlar and the Bandit King (New Adult fantasy, m/m, Torquere Press)
Scarlet and the White Wolf: Mariner’s Luck (New Adult fantasy, m/m, Torquere Press)
Scarlet and the White Wolf: The Land of Night (New Adult fantasy, m/m, Torquere Press)
Angels of the Deep (paranormal/horror)
Circuit Theory (novella, scifi, Riptide)

Coming Soon:

Malachite (speculative m/m, New Adult, 2015)
Poison Apples (collection, dark fantasy, m/m, 2015)
Scarlet and the White Wolf 4 (New Adult fantasy, m/m, 2015)

For upcoming news of her future novels, visit her Website

Links:

Amazon Link | Blog | Twitter | Goodreads

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Giveaways

THE GIVEAWAY: Every comment on this blog tour enters you in a drawing for a $15 Riptide store credit. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on March 7. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries.

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Dawn Kimberly Johnson, Dreamspinner Press, Jack Byrne

Excerpts and Giveaway: Hot Off the Press – A New Anthology From Dreamspinner Press

HotOffthePress large coverTitle: Hot Off The Press

Pages: 324

Buy Links: DreamspinnerAmazon

Blurb: Words hold the power to hurt as well as heal, and choosing them is a complicated and delicate process. No one knows this better than the men who work with them every day. Authors, reporters, reviewers, and publishers struggle to balance truth, art, long hours, and stressful jobs. Whether they’re trying to write a novel or advance a career, it can leave little time for love. The men in this anthology are seeking romance on and off the job, in print and online, against backdrops of fact, fiction, and even fantasy. Their tales are different but have one thing in common—there’s a happy ending waiting on the last page. Continue reading

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