Giveaways, Mickie B. Ashling

Excerpt and Giveaway: The Forged in Trust Blog Tour with Mickie B. Ashling

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We’re so pleased to welcome author Mickie B. Ashling back to TNA today, on the tour for her new novel Forged in Trust. Enjoy the excerpt she’s selected to share, and then be sure to check out the details on the Giveaway below.

Good luck!

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Many thanks to The Novel Approach for inviting me to share an exclusive excerpt of my latest novel Forged in Trust, which releases September 4th from Dreamspinner. This is the fourth novel in the Bay Area Professionals universe. Characters from the first three books will weave in and out of this story; however, you can read this as a stand-alone if you wish.

I also bring some goodies you can win by throwing your name into Rafflecopter.

Enjoy!

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Forged in Trust-finalAbout Forged in Trust: Dr. Ethan Marshall is the young medical student on call the night Tessa Duran murders her husband for abusing her twelve-year-old-son, Rino. Ethan stays in the cubicle while the rape kit is performed and is surprised when the boy resorts to prayers instead of tears.

Despite compelling evidence, Tessa is sent to jail for life. To avoid placing Rino in foster care, their parish priest agrees to raise him. Ethan is touched by Rino’s plight and visits whenever possible, but the connection is broken when the priest and young boy leave the area months later.

Raised by the Dominicans in California, Rino considers joining the order until a romance blossoms with a fellow student. After much soul-searching, he turns his back on everything familiar, and chooses his orientation over his perceived vocation. Upon graduating dental hygiene school, Rino takes a job at the office of Scott Gregory and Robin Kennedy.

Seventeen years have passed since that horrible night in the emergency room. Forty-three-year-old Ethan is now a Dominant in search of a full-time submissive. Twenty-nine-year-old Rino is adrift, longing for someone or something to help him find the serenity he’s lost along the way. As they rekindle their friendship, they realize they might be perfect for each other.

Purchase Links: Dreamspinner Press | All Romance eBooks | Amazon

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Excerpt: “MR. DURAN?”

Rino took his eyes off the People magazine he’d been leafing through and was surprised to see a guy holding a clipboard, instead of the female office manager he’d been expecting. He found him attractive—oddly enough, considering he’d never looked twice at gingers—and noticed his scrubs were the exact shade of blue as the eyes peering down at him with interest.

“That’s me.”

“You’re here for the interview?”

“Yes, sir.”

“For hygienist?”

Rino nodded. “Is there a problem?”

“Not at all,” the redhead said quickly. “I’m Robin Kennedy, please follow me.”

Tossing the magazine aside, Rino reached for the folder containing his resume and stood to follow Robin down a long hallway. He zeroed in on the guy’s ass and immediately scolded himself for being swayed by such a tempting sight. Tearing his eyes away, he glanced through the open arches on either side and saw two dentists and their assistants hard at work. The familiar sound of drilling reassured him that perhaps this practice wasn’t on the brink of bankruptcy, and that his paycheck, if they hired him, wouldn’t bounce.

Thinking back on last week’s phone call from his bank informing him of the state of his account, which was overdrawn by six hundred dollars due to his paycheck having been returned marked “Insufficient Funds,” put him in a black mood all over again. That’s what happens when you work for friends, he thought bleakly. He’d been swept up by David’s excitement and hadn’t bothered to check his financials, assuming his friend had the wherewithal to sustain the small dental practice he’d started a year ago. Rino should have known something was up as the staff dwindled from five to four and most recently three. The “oopsie” explanation he received, instead of cold cash to bail out his account, had been the last straw. He’d walked out thinking that finding another job would be a slam dunk, but so far, he’d been unsuccessful. Who knew there was such a glut of hygienists?

Being a guy in a predominantly female field didn’t help. He always felt like the odd man out whenever he mentioned his profession. The standard question was usually who in the heck wanted to spend all day cleaning other people’s teeth. It was gross and almost as bad as being a garbage collector, some tactless soul had pointed out. Maybe, Rino admitted, but it was a hell of a lot better than being a washed-up seminarian. Hygiene had fallen into his lap when he’d met David at a party and listened to him expound on the benefits of a career in health care. Dental hygiene was a booming field and didn’t involve years of study or a huge monetary commitment. Other industries had floundered during the California recession, but people in health care had managed to keep their heads above water. Encouraged, Rino had explored the costs and decided to invest in a career that might improve his life.

Rino was so caught up in his thoughts he hadn’t noticed they’d stopped, and he crashed into Robin, eliciting a soft oomph.

“Shit, I’m sorry,” he sputtered, feeling like such a klutz.

“No worries.” Robin pushed open the oak door, and they stepped into a private office. It had two desks butting up against each other, an unusual arrangement Rino had never seen before. Each desk had a computer monitor and several patient charts piled in a neat stack. Against one wall, there were file cabinets, a combination copy and fax machine, and what looked like a brand-new Keurig coffeemaker with a stainless-steel display tree holding an assortment of coffee pods. The sugar and creamer packets were overflowing in a ceramic white bowl, and there was a tiny fridge squeezed into a slot underneath.

“Would you like a cup of coffee?” Robin asked.

“No, thanks.”

“Have a seat.” Robin pointed at one of the two leather visitor’s chairs across from the desks. He pulled a rolling chair out from underneath one desk, sat down, and looked at the resume Rino had e-mailed in response to the want ad.

“So, Rino,” Robin said. “Is this a typo or do you really spell your name with an I instead of an E?”

“It’s short for Quirino.”

“That’s an unusual name.”

Rino shrugged. “I’m part Filipino and named after one of our presidents. My mother started calling me Rino from an early age and it stuck.”

“Makes sense,” the redhead said with a nod. “I also spell my name, Robin, with an I.”

“Doesn’t everyone?”

“Some people use a Y. Did your entire family move here from the Philippines?”

Rino shook his head. “It’s just my mom and me.”

“I see. Was your father in the service?”

“No,” Rino said impatiently. “Is the doctor going to interview me or what?”

Robin took his eyes off the paper and responded in a withering tone. “Do you have something more important going on?”

Rino cringed, realizing his mistake. Shit, maybe he’s the doctor, and I just pissed him off, he thought in a panic. Robin waited with a quiet air of authority that made Rino want to slide off the chair, get down on his knees, and beg his forgiveness. The man was a study in contrasts with his milky white skin covered with an even dusting of pale freckles and his fiery curls. They were sort of clownish, but there was nothing funny about the piercing blue eyes, framed by auburn lashes, gazing at Rino confidently. Robin wasn’t handsome in the traditional sense, but he oozed sex and power, two qualities Rino found irresistible. He was also ripped, and the nipple ring clearly outlined against the soft cotton fabric of his pale blue scrubs was a sign that there was more to this guy than dentistry.

“Not at all,” he said, “I apologize for being rude. Anxiety about my future is making me forget my good manners. I really need the job.”

“Then let’s try and concentrate, shall we? Now, tell me something about Rino with an I.”

Purchase Links: Dreamspinner Press | All Romance eBooks | Amazon

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Mickie B. AshlingAbout the Author: Mickie B. Ashling is the alter-ego of a multifaceted woman raised by a single mother who preferred reading over other forms of entertainment. She found a kindred spirit in her oldest child and encouraged her with a steady supply of dog-eared paperbacks. Romance was the preferred genre, and historical romances topped her favorites list.

By the time Mickie discovered her own talent for writing, real life had intruded, and the business of earning a living and raising four sons took priority. With the advent of e-publishing and the inevitable emptying nest, dreams were resurrected, and the storyteller was reborn.

She stumbled into the world of men who love men in 2002 and continues to draw inspiration from their ongoing struggle to find equality and happiness in this oftentimes skewed and intolerant world. Her award-winning novels have been called “gut wrenching, daring, and thought provoking.” She admits to being an angst queen and making her men work damn hard for their happy endings.

Mickie loves to travel and has lived in the Philippines, Spain, and the Middle East but currently resides in a suburb outside Chicago.

Connect with Mickie: Email | Facebook | Twitter | Website | Blog | Goodreads & Ask the Author

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Enter to win a $20 DSP gift certificate or one of three ecopies of Forged in Trust. Contest open internationally. Must be 18 or older to enter.

Rafflecopter Giveaway

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Follow the Tour: 

Sept. 1 – The Novel Approach

Sept. 2 – On Top Down Under Book Reviews

Sept. 3 – Charlie Cochet

Sept. 4 – Love Bytes

Sept. 4 – Sinfully…Addicted to All Male Romance

Sept. 7 – Hearts On Fire

Sept. 8 – Prism Book Alliance

Sept. 9 – MM Good Book Reviews

Sept. 11 – WoW…from The Scarf Princess

Tour and materials organized by PAS Promotions

 

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Devon McCormack, Giveaways

Guest Post and Giveaway: The Forget Me Not Blog Tour With Devon McCormack

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The Novel Approach welcomes back author Devon McCormack on his “Forget Me Not” blog tour. I’m excited to share Devon’s article with you because it’s such a fun and unique post, and I’m also pleased to share his giveaway with you–a signed print copy of one of his books (reader’s choice) to a US winner, or a reader’s choice e-copy of any of his books to an international winner–which you can enter by clicking on the Rafflecopter widget below.

Good luck!

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Imaginary Games and Storytelling 

by 

Devon McCormack

Thank you so much, The Novel Approach, for having me on the blog. Today, I thought I would delve into the beginnings of my writing career: my childhood. Hope you all enjoy. Also, check out the giveaway at the end of the post for a chance to win a signed copy of one of my books.

“I don’t want to be a warrior,” my brother whined. We chased red and orange leaves that blew in a gust of wind down our street. In that moment, they weren’t leaves, but an army of alien creatures we had to vanquish from our suburban kingdom.

I delayed our attack, a little perturbed knowing the wind might not continue creating a realistic fleeing effect. I turned back to my brother, who cringed and pouted. It was a familiar expression that suggested if I didn’t hear his request, he might ditch the game.

“What do you want to be?” I asked. But I knew what he was going to say.

“I want to be a king, too.”

“You can’t have two kings.”

I could have made us both kings, but I was a greedy kid. Whenever we made up imaginary games, I wanted to be the most awesome character—whether that was a king, a wizard, or an alien (and more often than not, all three). We never had this issue when we played Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers. I would be the Red Ranger, and he would be the Green Ranger. The Green Ranger was technically the more popular of the two, but I didn’t care. The Red Ranger was on the show before the Green Ranger, so he was better. My stubborn alliance with my Power Ranger probably had to do with some resentment I held toward my younger brothers who, like the Green Ranger, once they came onto the scene, stole the show. Although, the actor who played the Red Ranger was really cute, so I’m sure that had something to do with my allegiance as well.

With all games unrelated to Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers, though, I insisted on being the best character. I made the games up, after all, so surely I deserved to be whatever I wanted.

“No, the warriors are really the most awesome,” I lied. When it came to playing with my siblings, manipulation was essential.

“They’re more powerful than I am. I’m just a king.” A king with supernatural powers, but I didn’t have to mention that right then. I could always bring them up later. Of course, my brother was quick to call me out on these sorts of deceptions.

“Okay,” he said, surrendering. I could tell by his tone he didn’t believe me. I’m sure he only surrendered because he wasn’t interested in fighting about it.

“Then charge!” I exclaimed as I chased back after the leaves, which continued blowing down the street. Together, we stepped on our enemies, grinding them into the asphalt.

Victory was ours! Well, definitely mine.

My nine-year-old games usually involved battling leaves, tree branches, and bushes—representations of the many monsters I conjured up in my childhood brain. They were heavily plagiarized from my favorite shows and movies. In one game, we landed on an alien planet and went to a neighboring spaceship to rescue the passengers. But we discovered monsters that latched onto our faces and impregnated us with their alien babies, which ran amuck and tried to destroy our ship. Sound familiar? I don’t know why I’d seen Alien and Aliens at nine, but those movies left quite an impression on me. When we played my plagiarized version, it was always hard to get everyone to agree on who would be the first to get impregnated with the alien, so eventually we settled on creating an imaginary victim. Or in some cases, I would play the victim as well as another character on the ship.

There comes an age when kids aren’t as willing to play these sorts of imaginary games—when they start acting as if they’re too old for this sort of nonsense. When this happened, I began writing a story about kid superheroes. It wasn’t one continuous story. Just bits and pieces of various adventures I jotted down in a notebook. I typically wrote during school when I was bored or right after I got home when the daydreams I’d conjured up during class were fresh on my mind. There was no discipline behind my writing, and I only worked on it occasionally. When I did take the time to craft a few sentences here and there, I was surprised to discover I found even more fulfilment in these little stories than I did in the imaginary games I had played with my siblings and neighborhood friends. I didn’t have to argue with anyone about their characters. And I didn’t have to deal with the arduous task of transforming the world around me into something different. The trees didn’t need to be ninjas, and the bushes didn’t need to be tentacled monsters. I could create an entire world from the ground up. If I wanted to battle an alien, I would describe our struggle. If I wanted to have a conversation with a troll or a dragon, then I would write the conversation. These early stages of writing were empowering, because I realized within this notebook, I had the power to create anything I wanted. Before I wrote them down, they were daydreams—fragmented ideas that I would ponder every once and a while. But something about putting them down on paper made them real. And sharing them with my friends and family made me feel as if they were playing the game with me.

I wrote stories and short scripts off and on until I was fifteen, when I decided to write my first book. It was an unoriginal fantasy novel about a kid who was transported to another dimension. In a carbon copy of the most stereotypical fantasy world you can imagine, my main character battled monsters while befriending various magical creatures. It took me beyond anything I’d ever experienced in my early game-playing with my siblings. There were moments when writing that book where I became so invested in the adventure, so absorbed in the characters, that I briefly forgot about the real world entirely. It was as if I had really been transported into the places I had imagined. These experiences were intoxicating and largely the reason I continued writing. To give you an idea of where I was in those early years, here’s a sample from my third full-length unpublished novel. I would have provided samples from my first and second, but I’ve had a hard time finding them on my computer:

The Witches of Lukesoil Excerpt 

by 

A Naïve Little Boy

 

“Ouch!”

Thomas’ eyes shot open. Darkness was all he could see as he rocked back and forth. His back scraped across what felt like rocks.

That was impossible, though! How could it be so dark and how could he have been scraping against something so rough while he was lying in his comfy bed. Thomas reached his hands out and moved them along a thick cloth that surrounded him on all sides.

He felt a jab in his side.

“It’s wakin’ up,” snapped a hoarse voice.

Thomas froze. His eyes grew as wide they could. His heart skipped two beats.

He was being kidnapped!

“Shut your mouth and hurry up!” insisted another voice.

The voices sounded like women.

Thomas opened his mouth to speak. Nothing came out (not that it really mattered, because if he could have spoken just then he wouldn’t have known what to say).

“I’m going as fast as I can,” griped the first voice.

One of the kidnapper’s legs bumped into his side.

How could this be happening to him? Where were these crazy people taking him?

His imagination went wild. What if there were fifteen cult leaders dragging to their vile lair of evil in the sewer-system underworld so they could devour him one limb at a time? Or what if it was a gang of madmen that had just escaped from an insane asylum and were planning to throw him off a cliff?

Thomas felt one of the kidnappers legs bump into his shoulder.

An agitated groan came from outside, followed by an intense blow to his head–like he’d been hit with a brick.

He fell into a trance. 

This is all just a nightmare, he thought. That’s all it is. I’m just lying at home, having a bad dream, trying to wake up.

Of course he knew, deep down, that was no more than a fantasy.

–––––End of Excerpt–––––

Please forgive my sixteen-year-old writing for its apparent flaws. I could write a textbook on everything that was wrong with this scene, but it was where I was at back then. Being a very naïve and ambitious kid, I set out to publish some of these stories, but with no luck. It hardly discouraged me, because the process of writing was so pleasurable that it was a reward in and of itself. It wasn’t until many years later that I wrote what would become my first published novel, Clipped, which featured my own take on angel and demon mythologies. After that, I published several young adult novels: Hideous, When Ryan Came Back, and The Pining of Kevin Harding. In Hideous, I was haunted by a demon with my main character, a boy who was brutally disfigured by his demon-possessed father. In When Ryan Came Back, I worked to solve the mystery of my main character’s best friend’s death. And in The Pining of Kevin Harding, I helped my main character, a young vampire, escape the clutches of his sadistic master.

Through my stories, I’ve had the most incredible of adventures with the most fantastic of characters. As I look back at those formative years, I realize that storytelling is just like the imaginary games I played when I was little. I’m still chasing those leaves down the street with my little brother. Only with writing, I can have my cake and eat it, too. I can set out on the precise adventures that I create in my head and work with characters that intrigue me. This is what writing and reading is all about, isn’t it? They give us opportunities to escape every day and be a part of something fantastic. We get to be adults and play like kids. So whether you are a writer or a reader, as you pick up your next adventure, I hope you enjoy the ride and take pleasure in those transcendent moments where you forget, even if for only a moment, what is real and what is fiction.

Thank you so much for taking a moment to read this post. I’m running a Rafflecopter giveaway below. US participants can win a signed copy of your choice of one of my books, while International participants can win an ecopy of the book of their choice. Thank you so much, The Novel Approach, for having me on the blog today. Your team has been so supportive of all my work, and I am incredibly appreciative.

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About Devon’s Books

Clipped_100dpi_cvrCLIPPED: Warning: This title is erotic and contains homosexual content, graphic sex, violence, and strong language. Readers uncomfortable with rough sexual situations should not purchase this book.

Though mortals have been convinced that God cares about their souls, nothing could be further from the truth. He created the world as a gift for his lover, Satan. But when Satan left him, he decided to end what he saw as his most grotesque creation.

Satan and his army of demons are man’s only hope…

The demon Kinzer and his lover, Janka, have been sent by Satan to spy on The Raze, a gang of rogue demons who are working with God to bring about Armageddon. When someone exposes their true allegiances, the Raze clips Kinzer’s wings and murders Janka. Kinzer manages to escape. He tracks down Satan’s allies to warn them about a mole in their midst when he learns that they’ve located the Antichrist—a powerful weapon that could prevent the apocalypse. Now, he’s on a mission to protect the Antichrist and avenge his lover’s death.

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Hideous lgHIDEOUS: Eight years ago, Luke Retter witnessed the brutal murder of his mother and sister at the hands of his demon-possessed father. He survived but lost a hand and an eye. The demon also burned its emblem into his skin. Those marked by a demon are called curseds and are at risk of becoming possessed themselves, so they are monitored and enslaved by the state-run UCIS. Working as a slave is hard, but Luke prefers it to the possibility of being controlled by a demon.

Then one night, he wakes to find his worst nightmare coming true. His father’s demon has come for him. He runs to the only person who might be able to help him: Zack, a cursed who ran away from the state and created an underground community to protect other fugitive curseds. Zack helps him suppress the demon. But as the UCIS closes in on Zack and Luke’s demon crafts its own, nefarious plot, Luke realizes that he must take a stand.

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When Ryan Came Back_FinalWHEN RYAN CAME BACK: Steven’s life changes forever the day he discovers his childhood friend and lifelong crush, Ryan Walters, standing in his bedroom. The problem? Ryan Walters committed suicide just days earlier.

Ryan tells Steven that he didn’t kill himself. He believes he was murdered and that his death is linked to an article he was working on for the school paper. Steven sets out to solve the mystery, but as the story unfolds, so does Ryan’s secret life of sex with guys and depression. Steven realizes suicide is more plausible than Ryan’s conspiracy theory, but he struggles to convince Ryan of the real cause of his death. And despite revelations of his friend’s closeted life, he must face the truth that Ryan doesn’t–and never will–love him.

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PiningKevinHarding_cvrTHE PINING OF KEVIN HARDING: Kevin Harding wanted an exciting life. Now, he’s a vampire and wishes he could go back to his average, boring one in the suburbs. His master is furious that he refuses to hunt, but Kevin knows it’s only a matter of time before he caves. The longer a person is a vampire, the more compliant they are to their master’s will.

When Kevin decides to give the hunt a try, he’s kidnapped by vampire hunters. Rather than endure their severe torture, he agrees to help them kill his master. The hunters’ plan goes horribly awry, and they flee the scene with Kevin. But they have to restrategize quick. The longer he’s away from his master, the more painful his life becomes. He craves his master. He hungers for him. He pines for him. And as they get close to enacting their plan, Kevin isn’t sure if he’ll be able to follow through.

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Purchase Links: Amazon | ARe | B&N | Harmony Ink Press | Wilde City Press

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Devon McCormackAbout the Author: Devon McCormack spends most of his time hiding in his lair, adventuring in paranormal worlds with his island of misfit characters. A good ole Southern boy, McCormack grew up in the Georgian suburbs with his two younger brothers and an older sister. At a very young age, he spun tales the old fashioned way, lying to anyone and everyone he encountered. He claimed he was an orphan. He claimed to be a king from another planet. He claimed to have supernatural powers. He has since harnessed this penchant for tall tales by crafting whole worlds where he can live out whatever fantasy he chooses.

A gay man himself, McCormack focuses on gay male characters, adding to the immense body of literature that chooses to represent and advocate gay men’s presence in media. His body of work ranges from erotica to young adult, so readers should check the synopses of his books before purchasing so that they know what they’re getting into.

Connect with Devon: Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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THE GIVEAWAY

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Exclusive Excerpt and Giveaway: The Enforcing Emory Blog Tour With Mickie B. Ashling

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Many thanks to The Novel Approach for hosting my blog tour visit. I bring an exclusive excerpt and some goodies you can win by throwing your name into the Rafflecopter.

Enjoy!

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Excerpt: “What’s the guy’s name?” Irina asked. She was two years younger than Nik and had taken to Western society like a duck to water. Hooked on social media, she was never far from her iPad. “Let’s google the creep.”

Nikolai snorted. Irina considered Wikipedia and Google the sources of all information, and if she couldn’t find her answer with a few keystrokes, it didn’t exist. She whistled in astonishment after she typed in Emory Lowe and hundreds of links popped up. Images of the saucy young man in every costume imaginable filled her screen, and everyone looked over her shoulders to see what was so shocking. There were photos of Emory caught leaping in the air, frozen in time as the camera captured him performing one intricate move after another. When Irina looked him up on YouTube, they watched him perform his short program at Nationals, and the room hushed as the sound of Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet filled the room. Nikolai couldn’t take his eyes off the tiny screen, mesmerized by the graceful movements.

The gangly youth was artistic on the ice, a fluid nymph who appeared oblivious to the huge crowd staring down at him. He owned the performance, one minute soft and tender, the next fiercely determined to win his prize, executing the complicated number with a series of jumps, including a quad, and ending the program with an I-spin that seemed to go on forever. The applause when he stopped and posed without wavering was loud and heartfelt, and that funny grin Emory seemed to have mastered appeared through the heavy makeup. Nikolai felt something twist deep down in the pit of his stomach. Christ, the figure skater wasn’t just bragging—he was dead serious. The guy was fantastic, and Nikolai felt like a lumbering oaf comparing his skills to Emory’s immense talent.

He looked up from the handheld device sheepishly. “I guess he wasn’t lying.”

“Bah!” Igor said loudly. “He’s a poofter!”

“Don’t discount the talent because of the outfit,” Nikolai said. For some reason he felt the need to defend Emory.

“Figure skating is nothing compared to hockey.”

“No,” Nikolai retorted, recalling Emory’s words. “It’s much harder.”

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Enforcing Emory Cover lgBlurb: Olympic figure skater Emory Lowe falls in lust the moment he lays eyes on his new neighbor, hockey player Nikolai (Nik) Vetrov.  On the surface, Nik is a typical badass enforcer, intimidating and dangerous, on and off the ice. The only son of Ukrainian immigrants, Nik has been groomed from childhood to fulfill his father’s dreams of seeing him in the Hockey Hall of Fame.  Igor guides his son toward that goal with a controlling—and abusive—hand, steering him clear of anyone who might ruin his chances.

Although Emory is the US National Figure Skating champion, he’s in-your-face gay, and his audacious persona rubs Nik and his family the wrong way.  Raised by supportive and loving parents, Emory is Nik’s polar opposite in every way but one—his desire to succeed. Underneath the fluff and glitter beats the heart of a fierce competitor, and this side of Emory’s personality begins to close the distance between the two athletes.

While the attraction was one-sided in the beginning, Nik finds himself responding to Emory’s flirting.  Before the incongruous pair have a chance at any sort of relationship, they must survive the pressures of career, separation, and most importantly, Igor’s ruthless homophobia.

Purchase Links: Dreamspinner Press | All Romance eBooks | Amazon

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Bio: Mickie B. Ashling is the alter-ego of a multifaceted woman raised by a single mother who preferred reading over other forms of entertainment. She found a kindred spirit in her oldest child and encouraged her with a steady supply of dog-eared paperbacks. Romance was the preferred genre, and historical romances topped her favorites list.

By the time Mickie discovered her own talent for writing, real life had intruded, and the business of earning a living and raising four sons took priority. With the advent of e-publishing and the inevitable emptying nest, dreams were resurrected, and the storyteller was reborn.

She stumbled into the world of men who love men in 2002 and continues to draw inspiration from their ongoing struggle to find equality and happiness in this oftentimes skewed and intolerant world. Her award-winning novels have been called “gut wrenching, daring, and thought provoking.” She admits to being an angst queen and making her men work damn hard for their happy endings.

Mickie loves to travel and has lived in the Philippines, Spain, and the Middle East but currently resides in a suburb outside Chicago.

Connect with Mickie: Email | Facebook | Twitter | Website | Blog | Goodreads & Ask the Author

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Giveaway: Using the Rafflecopter widget below, enter to win one of these prizes (contest open internationally): a $20 Dreamspinner gift certificate, one of five ecopies of Enforcing Emory, or an audio copy of Fire Horse. Must be 18 or older to enter.

Rafflecopter Giveaway

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Enforcing Emory Tour Banner

Tour Schedule

May 25 – The Novel Approach

May 25 – Garrett Leigh

May 26 – Charlie Cochet

May 27 – Emotion in Motion

May 28 – BA Tortuga

May 29 – On Top Down Under Book Reviews

May 31 – Diverse Reader

June 1 –  Prism Book Alliance

June 2  –  Book Reviews & More by Kathy

June 2 –  Cup o’ Porn

June 3 –  WoW…from The Scarf Princess

June 4 –  Love Bytes

June 5 –  Divine Magazine

June 8 –  MM Good Book Reviews

June 9 –  Sinfully…Addicted to All Male Romance

June 10 – Hearts On Fire

Tour and materials organized by PAS Promotions

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Exclusive Excerpt and Giveaway: The Chyna Doll Blog Tour With Mickie B. Ashling

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Many thanks to The Novel Approach for hosting my Chyna Doll blog tour visit. This is the fourth novel in the Horizons series. We’ve jumped ahead several years since Daddio ended. Luca has just started high school, Lil and Grier are in Italy, and Clark and Jody are the official “babysitters” for a month. Here’s an exclusive excerpt for you. I’ve also brought along some goodies to give away: a $20 Dreamspinner gift certificate, one of five ecopies of Chyna Doll, any two ebooks from Mickie’s backlist, or a signed paperback of Chyna Doll!

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ChynaDollLGBlurb: Lil Lampert’s forty-fifth birthday turns the effervescent architect into a brooding mess, and his partner, Grier Dilorio, takes him to Italy to help him regain his zest for life. The timing is bad—almost-fifteen-year-old Luca has just started high school, and his mother and stepfather are also traveling. Luca is left in the care of Chicago Bear, Clark Stevens, and his partner, Dr. Jody Williams.

Growing up with two dads and two gay uncles has given Luca a unique perspective on gender roles, but not all the answers. He’s had a secret crush on his straight best friend, Chip, for years. Suddenly, Luca finds himself attracted to Chyna, Chip’s twin sister. Now he’s wondering if this means he’s bisexual.

Born with a sexual development disorder, Chyna should have been raised as a male, but due to an epic parenting fail, is being raised as female. Hiding the truth becomes more difficult when Chyna hits puberty, and crushing over Luca adds another element to Chyna’s struggle to fit in.

Is Luca’s moral compass strong enough to guide him successfully through this period of discovery or will he succumb to peer pressure and shatter Chyna’s dreams for happiness?

Buy Links: Dreamspinner Press | Amazon US | All Romance eBooks

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Excerpt: Clark got out of the car gingerly, putting most of his weight on the cane he was still using to hobble around. His fracture had healed, but he was being cautious and hadn’t been given clearance to rejoin his team yet; the unwanted hiatus had taken its toll on his normally good humor. Luca hoped he’d be able to get back to the sport before the season ended, or he’d turn into a cranky old bear over the winter. “Put your gear away and come back to help with the dogs.”

“Okay,” Luca said, happy for the reprieve. He took the stairs two at a time and threw his gear into the bedroom they’d assigned him. It was the same room he’d stayed in since he was a youngster, except it had been redecorated recently. The Disney wallpaper had been removed, replaced with posters of popular singers like Taylor Swift, OneRepublic, and his current favorite, Macklemore. The first time he’d heard “Same Love” by the thirty-year-old rapper, he knew he’d have to add him to his playlist. The ode to same sex love had become a national anthem to many in the LGBT community, and Luca was very vocal about gay rights and alternative families. Ironically, he hadn’t made a public stand on his own orientation. In fact, none of his friends knew for sure if he liked boys or girls, and they didn’t dare ask. In truth, Luca wasn’t sure either. He was attracted to both sexes, and flattered when they flirted with him, but once in a while, Chip would look at him in a certain way, and he’d get this feeling deep in the pit of his stomach that made him wonder if he could be bisexual.

It seemed like his body was developing much faster than his brain, and he was plagued by inconvenient boners that were a part of growing up, according to his dads, and nothing to be ashamed of. Every guy gets them, they’d said reassuringly. I’m sure you know how to deal with them, right? Right—what? How awkward was that? Did he even want to say the word? It sounded so dirty when he said it out loud, but it felt so good in the privacy of his room. How could anything that was so awesome be wrong? Wouldn’t it feel that much better with a partner? Why did he have to choose sides? Or did he? Didn’t most people automatically know if they were attracted to men or women?

Two guys kissing was nothing unusual to Luca, likewise, the affectionate nuzzling that went on between his mother and Tito Ali. One didn’t seem more normal than the other. Because of the nine year age difference between him and his half-sister, Gemma, girls remained somewhat of a mystery. He had a tendency to treat them like they were precious Christmas ornaments that might shatter at any minute. Chip wasn’t too far off the mark when he’d accused Luca of handling the girls in school with extreme care. The few he’d been around had been very sweet, and he didn’t see the horns that supposedly lurked beneath their bouncy curls. Perhaps his best friend was jealous. Did that mean Chip was gay and jonesing for him? Christ, growing up was such a pain sometimes. He wished he were eighteen so all his doubts could be put to rest.

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Author BioAuthor Bio: Mickie B. Ashling is the alter-ego of a multifaceted woman raised by a single mother who preferred reading over other forms of entertainment. She found a kindred spirit in her oldest child and encouraged her with a steady supply of dog-eared paperbacks. Romance was the preferred genre, and historical romances topped her favorites list.

By the time Mickie discovered her own talent for writing, real life had intruded, and the business of earning a living and raising four sons took priority. With the advent of e-publishing and the inevitable emptying nest, dreams were resurrected, and the storyteller was reborn.

She stumbled into the world of men who love men in 2002 and continues to draw inspiration from their ongoing struggle to find equality and happiness in this oftentimes skewed and intolerant world. Her award-winning novels have been called “gut wrenching, daring, and thought provoking.” She admits to being an angst queen and making her men work damn hard for their happy endings.

Mickie loves to travel and has lived in the Philippines, Spain, and the Middle East but currently resides in a suburb outside Chicago.

Connect with Mickie: Email | Facebook | Website | Blog | Goodreads and Ask the Author

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THE GIVEAWAY (*Contest open internationally/Must be 18 or older to enter*):

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Tour Schedule:

March 2 – The Novel Approach

March 3 – Cup o’ Porn

March 4 – Hearts On Fire

March 5 – WoW…from The Scarf Princess

March 6 – MM Good Book Reviews

March 7 – Book Reviews & More by Kathy

March 9 – Prism Book Alliance

March 10 – Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

March 11 – On Top Down Under Book Reviews

March 12 – Sinfully…Addicted to All Male Romance

Tour and materials organized by PAS Promotions

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