Check it out! A.E. Via has stopped by and has given us a chance to win a copy of her latest release, Promises 3!

Hello Top2Bottom Family:)

The fabulous A.E. Via is stopping by on her blog tour to discuss and offer a chance to win a copy of her latest release, Promises Part 3!

Author A.E. Via
Title: Promises Part 3
M/M GAY CONTEMPORARY/ACTION
Edited by: Tina Adamski
Cover Artist – Jay Aheer
PAGE COUNT – 222
Release Date: June 30, 2017

Click HERE and enter to win a copy of Promises 3!!!

Synopsis

A bounty hunter’s partners to lovers’ story.
The hunt is on… and he’s the prey.

Bradford (Ford) King was sure he had the rest of his life mapped out. Though he was no longer a SEAL Lieutenant, his brother was home safe and he had a job that still allowed him to satisfy his hunger for hunting bad guys. Life was simple, no distractions or complications – at age forty-six – that’s all Ford wanted. What he didn’t want was his work partner, sniper/watchman, Dana, giving him s**t all the time.

Dana Cadby had grown up labeled a roughneck from the wrong side of the tracks. He’d fought, scrounged, and survived despite a father that constantly told him he couldn’t. Dana pulled himself up by his own boot straps and made a name for himself in the marksman community. He’d been Duke’s bounty watchman for five years. It was his job to ensure their safety, watch their backs. At thirty-three, he was trusted, well respected by his peers, his bosses, his friends… so why couldn’t he earn the same respect from his partner?

Dana knew he was bisexual before he graduated high school. He also knew he was attracted to the huge, 6’3”, SEAL from the moment he and his brother came to join their team. It wasn’t easy for him to tamp down his immediate reaction to Ford’s thick muscles, full beard, and dark eyes. Still, Dana exhibited nothing but professionalism towards him, not wanting to make his ‘straight’ partner uncomfortable.

After Dana took back his ex-girlfriend, he’d noticed an intensification in Ford’s bad attitude. One that turned aggressive and downright antagonistic, and Dana was damned if he’d just lay down and take it. He was gonna make that man respect him if it was the last thing he did.

When Duke sends Dana and Ford out to track down their most dangerous bounty yet, they both embrace the fact that they make one hell of a team… but they fight tooth and nail against the powerful intimacy brewing between them.
Beware: When Ford and Dana connect, no fugitive can hide from the hunter and his watchman.

This story is a part of a series but can stand alone. It does not end on a cliffhanger and has a HEA.
Disclaimer: This book is about MM romance, albeit there is a very brief MF scene.

AUTHOR BIO:

A.E. Via is an author in the beautiful gay romance genre and also founder and owner of Via Star Wings Books. Her writing embodies everything from hopelessly romantic to adventure, to scandalous. Her stories often include intriguing edges and twists that take readers to new, thought-provoking depths.
When she’s not clicking away at her laptop, she devotes herself to her family—a husband and four children.
Adrienne has tons of more stories to tell, so be sure to visit her site to learn more! Go to A.E. Via’s official website http://authoraevia.com for more detailed information on how to contact her, follow her, or a sneak peak on upcoming work, free reads, VSWB submissions, and where she’ll appear next.

Links

Amazon Link: https://goo.gl/KQ32Uz
Kobo: https://goo.gl/qXPIzK
Smashwords: https://goo.gl/tSpzyz
Goodreads: https://goo.gl/AbfTzJ

Author Official Website: http://authoraevia.com
A.E. Amazon Author Page: https://goo.gl/AVpOeJ
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/aeviaauthor
Twitter: https://twitter.com/AuthorAEVia

Excerpt:

Ford was in the office earlier than scheduled. He’d woken up with another hard-on after one of the most erotic dreams he’d ever had. And it was about a person whose name he didn’t want to voice out loud or even in his head. This was doing a number on him. It’d irritated him when Dana used to complain about how his girlfriend didn’t understand him and no matter what he did he couldn’t please her selfish ass, but they’d broken up and everyone – not just him – was relieved to have the old, light-hearted Dana back. Then, like all good things, it came to an end when she popped back up with tears and a sob story. That she’d made a big mistake.

Ford stirred his coffee so hard, part of it sloshed over the edge of the cup. He felt pissed when spineless Dana had reared his ugly head again and taken her back. Too decent to turn her down. Gritting his teeth, Ford demanded Dana act like the man he truly was. Strong, determined, spirited, and a ton of other great qualities Ford had taken for granted until someone else started stealing them.

He just wished he was sure that he could go the relationship route with a man. Ford wasn’t scared of dating the opposite sex, he was too old, too damn grown to worry about what anyone would think. He’d had experiences with men and women in the past. Had had his fun. He’d eyed a few guys when he was in the service, even patted a few bottoms, but nothing had stirred him this hard in years. He thought he was content in his life. He had his brother, his work, he was good now. He’d lived complications before, wasn’t interested in them again. Relationships, lust, pining, dates, romantic expectations, sex, all equaled the same thing to him… complications.

Please Welcome J. Scott Coatsworth! He’s here to talk about his New Release, The Great North and to talk about how the world is changing around us.


Change is Coming

The world is changing.

Most of us can feel it. The seasons aren’t as dependable as they once were. Storms are bigger. Droughts are longer. The coral reefs are dying.

Each of these events adds a little bit of chaos to the world.

Five years ago, I thought the world could change. I thought that climate change was a fun thing to include in speculative visions of the planet’s future.

Now I’m not so sure.

“The Great North” was written before the November US elections. Even then, I was still hopeful.
Now, I’m not so sure.

Authors have a responsibility to put truth into the world. Sometimes we do it through scathing words – when the pen is mightier than the sword.

But we speculative fiction authors do it by holding up a mirror to the world, letting it see itself from the outside.
For me, that means starting to tell stories of where I see the world going – and at the moment, I see it hurling into an abyss.

Maybe if enough of us speak up, if enough of us change our own little corners of the world, we can still slow or stop this headlong plunge.

Maybe we will still leave enough of a world to our kids and grandkids to matter.
Or maybe the world will go on again without us.

I hope you enjoy “The Great North”.

Want to know more about The Great North by J. Scott Coatsworth? Check out the blurb and excerpt below:

The Great North by J. Scott Coatsworth

Publisher: Mischief Corner Books
Author: J. Scott Coatsworth
Cover Artist: Freddy MacKay
Length: 34K
Format: eBook
Release Date: 6/14/17
Pairing: MM
Price: 3.99
Genre: MM, Sci Fi, Fantasy, Romance, Myths, Legends, Gods, Post-Apocalyptic

Blurb:

Dwyn is a young man in the small, isolated town of Manicouga, son of the Minstor, who is betrothed to marry Kessa in a few weeks’ time.

Mael is shepherding the remains of his own village from the north, chased out by a terrible storm that destroyed Land’s End.

Both are trying to find their way in a post-apocalyptic world. When the two meet, their love and attraction may change the course of history.

—————

The Great North was inspired by St. Dwynwen’s Day, also known as Welsh Valentines Day:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dwynwen

Excerpt:

“We celebrate Dwyn’s Day as a testament to true love and sacrifice. It’s a remembrance of the way things were and the way they’ve come to be. In the end, let it be a reminder that every one of us has the power to change the course of events through love.”
—Dillon Cooper, New Gods and Monsters, Twenty years After Dwyn

The gray clouds scudded by overhead, blowing in quickly from the east.
Dwyn shivered and pulled on his woolen cap. It was cold out, unusual for so early in the fall. The rains had been heavy this season, the wettest in a generation, and Circle Lake was close to overflowing its banks. If he stretched to look over the rows of corn plants, he could see the waters lapping at the shore far below, as if hungry to consume his village of Manicouga.
His father had consulted the elders, some of whom had seen more than fifty summers, and everyone agreed things were changing. Whether that augured good or ill was anyone’s guess.
He shrugged and moved along the row of plants, breaking off ears of corn and throwing them into the jute sack that hung from his shoulder.
Ahead of him, two of his age-mates, Declan and Baia, were working their way down the next two rows.
Dwyn frowned. He got distracted easily, and he’d let the two of them get a jump on him. That wouldn’t do.
He redoubled his pace. He moved with focus and purpose, and soon he was closing the gap with his friends.
“Someone’s being chased by a lion,” Baia said with a laugh.
“Or a tiger.” Declan grinned, his nice smile only missing one tooth, lost to a fight with one of the Beckham brothers the year before.
Dwyn grinned. “Or a bear?” Dwyn only knew lions and tigers from the fairy tale his mother used to tell them, “The Girl and the Aus.” He had no idea what an Aus was, either.
Bears he knew. The hunters occasionally brought one home, and old Alesser had a five-line scar across his wrinkled face that he claimed came from one of the beasts.
A shout went up from ahead of them. Dwyn craned his neck to see what the ruckus was, but he couldn’t make out anything. “What’s going on?”
Declan, who was half a head taller, looked toward the commotion. “Hard to tell. Something down by the road.”
Dwyn laid down his sack carefully and ran up the hill to one of the old elms that dotted the field. He climbed into the tree, scurrying up through the leaves and branches until he had a clear view of the Old Road. It ran from up north to somewhere down south, maybe near the ruins of old Quebec if the merchant tales held any truth. Hardly anyone from Manicouga ever followed it, but occasionally traders would follow it to town, bringing exotic wares and news from the other villages that were scattered up and down its length.
They swore it went all the way down to the Heat, the great desert that had consumed much of the world after the Reckoning.
“What’s going on down there?” Baia called from below.
Dwyn tried to make sense of it. “There are three wagons coming down the pass. They’re loaded up with all sorts of things. They don’t look like traders though.”
The first of the horse-drawn wagons had just reached the field above the main township. It stopped, and someone hopped off to talk with the villagers who had gathered from the fields.
“We need to get down there,” Dwyn said, scrambling down the tree trunk. “Something’s happening.” Nothing new ever happened in Manicouga, and he wasn’t going to miss it.
He grabbed his sack and sprinted toward the Old Road, not waiting to see if Declan and Baia followed.

Buy Links Etc:

Publisher (no orders until release): http://www.mischiefcornerbooks.com/the-great-north.html

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07172TL6H?ref_=pe_2427780_160035660

Barnes & Noble: Coming Soon

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/the-great-north

Smashwords: Coming Soon

iBooks: https://itun.es/us/ec62jb.l

Goodreads: Coming Soon

Author Bio:

Scott spends his time between the here and now and the what could be. Enticed into fantasy and sci fi by his mom at the tender age of nine, he devoured her Science Fiction Book Club library. But as he grew up, he wondered where all the people like him were in the books he was reading.

The man who wrote the Surviving Elite High series is here!!! He answers the most asked question by his fans…..

Who is your favorite character from your novels and why?

 

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Readers from every corner of the globe have asked me this questions over and over again. And to be honest, this is probably the hardest question for any author. Why? You love every single one of your characters, even the ones you kill in your novels. They are a part of you. They are you. Picking one over the other is an extremely difficult thing to do. But I had to answer this question since everyone has been so keen to know. I chose two. I couldn’t chose one. I had to choose two. You guys ready? Here we go!

My first favorite character is the ever so sexy Nicholas Anthony Hawking, or better known as Nick Wild Hawk, from Surviving Elite High. But first, let me tell you about my first work of fiction, Surviving Elite High. Surviving Elite High was re-released on January 5, 2014 under Ai Press. This novels chronicles the life of John Henry Ames, a gay sixteen-year-old boy, as he makes his way through life as an outcast in the shadows of an elite high school where he is tormented by two psychopathic bullies. After befriending the school’s quarterback, Nick Hawking, their lives change forever. Their friendship blossoms and they discover a side of each other that no one knew. For my debut novel, I thought of everything. It has friendship, love, bullies, and even a school shooting. School violence is very serious topic these days and I needed to say something about it in my debut work. Now, let’s move on to Nick Wild Hawk.

Nick is the school’s quarterback and athlete extraordinaire. He’s the kings of the roots and knows it. He is the type of guy that every guy wants to be and the type of guy that every girl wants to be with, but there is more to Nick that meets the eyes. Nick comes from a neglected home and it’s evident by the way he goes around having sex with different girls. He’s looking for love and attention in the wrong places. When he meets John, however, that changes completely. John offers him pure and unadulterated friendship and support. As the story progresses, he becomes dependent on John and he begins to grow as an individual. Slowly, Nick becomes the perfect guy thanks to John’s help. In my latest novel, Surviving Elite High: The Next Generation, you guys will be able to see that Nick grew up to be the perfect husband, lover, leader and friend. Why? Surviving Elite High: The Next Generation is set twenty years after the last time we saw Nick on Surviving Elite High: Senior Year. Surviving Elite High: The Next Generation made me love Nick even more. He became the man that I always envisioned he could be. Hopefully, you guys fall in love with him like I did.

Now, my second favorite character from my novels is Ashton Hall from the third story found inside Love, Joy, Heartache and Pain. Now, let me tell you a little more about Love, Joy, Heartache and Pain. Love, Joy, Heartache and Pain is a collection of three short stories that can stand on their own, but can act as a full-length novel if you put them together. They appear in the following order: The not so unrealistic and detailed account of how my best friend and I switched bodies for a short period of time or Swapatized for short, Spirit Indestructible, and The Lake View Psychopath which stars Ashton Hall. As you can see, their names tell you a lot. The first one is extremely funny, the second can be sad and sweet, but the last one is very psychotic and gory. Now that you know a little more about them, let’s talk about Ashton Hall.

Ashton Hall hates his existence at Lake View High and he has very good reasons to hate it. The jocks have made his life a living hell and his friends have completely abandoned him. Why you may ask yourself? Well, Ashton Hall is openly gay and dating the love of his life, Austin Young, the school’s soccer star. Almost overnight, they became the center of every joke and every bully’s paradise. My heart breaks every time I reread their story. Without giving too much away, he loses the guy he loves and his mind snaps. It breaks into two and the only thing that keeps him moving forward is the need for revenge. He needs to avenge the love of his life and then move on with his life. And you know what? I can connect with him in so many ways. I would do what he did if they took the love of my life away from me. I would go crazy and snap at everyone. The Lake View Psychopath maybe the shortest story out of the three, but it will keep you at the edge of your seat from beginning to end. In my eyes, Ashton Hall is a hero, not the famous Lake View Psychopath they think he is. But I’ll let you decide when you read it.

So these are my top two favorite characters found in my novels. Picking them was hard since every single one of them is like a baby to me. I love them all, but you guys forced me to pick two. Hopefully, you read these two novels and bond with them like I did. Let me know what you think if you do.

You can stalk me at https://johnhenryamesbooks.wordpress.com or email me at authorjha@gmail.com. See you later guys!

Facebook

 

 

Please welcome MM author Faith Ashlin!

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Hello,

 

I’d like to introduce myself. My name is Faith Ashlin and it’s wonderful to be here on Top 2 Bottom reviews. I’ve been writing for a long time now and I thoroughly enjoy it. What’s not to love? Total control over beautiful young men, making them fall in love and lust and… getting them steamy whenever I want!

 

I do like a bit of steamy but I prefer a plot and proper characters along with the steam. I like seeing how my characters cope with the worlds and situations I throw at them. It’s fun to put them through hell then create a happy ending.

My characters are very important to me. Sometimes, when I write, they feel almost like friends I’ve come to know and love. I don’t want them to be perfect – real people never are – but I do want them to be good people. Ones that are trying their best to be decent. I also like them to grow and change.

I’ve always loved the idea of a man who tries to do the right thing, no matter what the cost to himself. A man who is decent and honourable, regardless of what the world thinks. That’s a theme that runs through many of my books. Good men who, hopefully, come across as realistic people, coping with life and love.

I think my love of a noble man is because I’m not sure how I’d react in a really difficult situation. I’m unexciting and I like my creature comforts. I don’t know how strong I’d be under pressure. I need central heating and knowing I have somewhere safe to go home to and a future to look forward to, however boring it may be. That makes the brave and true hero seem all the more appealing.

Nicky, in my new story, ‘To Stand Close’, is a man like that. Although he knows the world thinks he’s a loser – an opinion that matches his own low sense of self-worth – he’s still a man who has honour, which he holds true to quietly, without a fuss.

I like Nicky, he’s far from perfect, has some odd passions, but he’s a good man. I hope you like him too.

If you’d like to try a some of my writing there is a link to a free read below. I hope you enjoy it.

 

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To Stand Close

Faith Ashlin

Can love grow and survive for two men on opposite sides of the deepest of chasm—slavery? 

In this world one country has cut itself off, and is closed and mysterious to everyone else. What’s the secret it’s hiding? Magic? Monsters? No, just the cruel reality of slavery. But inside its borders life goes on as normal, and it competes with the rest of the world at sport just like everyone else, just to prove that it’s the best.

Nicky accepts that, and is happy in his own small, simple life as a gymnastics coach. He accepts it because he’s never known anything else, but he stays as far away from the brutality of slavery as he can, until he’s given a present he doesn’t want and isn’t allowed to refuse.

As for love? Well, he loves his sport, isn’t that enough?

 

General release date: 27th March

 

Buy link:

https://www.totallybound.com/to-stand-close#excerpt

 

FREE READ!!!

My Unintended

Faith Ashlin

Noah and Greg are teachers and have been living together for a while. They’re content in their lives and with each other. Or at least they think so. Then Noah is forced to consider his dreams for the future when his parents change their wills. He’s told the family house will be left to his sister rather than him, as she has children. But does he want a wife and traditional family?

Instead of talking to Greg, as he knows he should, he runs back home. His grandmother takes him in hand and tells him a story about her own loves back before she was married.

It makes Noah think about what he really wants.

 

Free download link:

https://www.totallybound.com/my-unintended

 

Check out Ghost’s Dilemma by Morwen Navarre!!

Ghost’s Dilemma
by  Morwen Navarre  

A warm comfort read for cold nights.

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Genre: M/M Fantasy Romance
Publisher: Torquere Press
Release Date: February 4, 2015
Pages: 180
Series: Book 2 of Ghost’s Sight (Book 2 can be read as a stand alone)

You blush and you growl. I want to keep you like
you are just then. All smooth, bare skin and pink cheeks. Your eyes shining up
at me brighter than your witchmark.


blurb





Moon shine on me, Ghost. When you look at me like this, how can I even think of anything but making love to you?
Ghost is content to spend all his free time in bed with Gerry. But scandal and hate surrounding Ghost’s appointment as the first male witch and a deadly epidemic force Ghost to make choices that might cost him Gerry’s love.
Spurred on by a message from his mentor, Ghost embarks alone on a journey through mystical underground tunnels and lost civilizations to the frozen lands of his origin, seeking a way to neutralize the threat back home. While he struggles to find a balance between his duties as a witch and his calling as a seer, all Ghost really wants is to return to the haven he has found in Gerry’s arms.

Use the coupon code “sweetheart2015” and save 15% at Torquere

 
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Book 1
is on sale for $0.99 for a limited time here http://goo.gl/w1WDRL
 
Excerpt



Warm. Warm, strong arms surrounded him. Ghost smiled and moved closer, burying his face in the hard muscle of a shoulder. He knew he needed to get up to tend to his patients, but he was still so tired. He nuzzled deeper into the shoulder that was… clearly not Gerry’s.

“The little one wakes.” A deep, rumbling voice pierced his fog of sleep.
Ghost shoved hard against the arms holding him. He wriggled free and sat up. He heard a door close somewhere behind him. “Let go of me,” he growled. He was wide awake now, his heart pounding against his ribs.
The man belonging to the arms was bare-chested, as was Ghost, to his chagrin. He was quite relieved to see he still wore his breeches, though relief didn’t stop him from glaring at the man in the bed with him.
“You’re fierce, little one. This is good to see. It means you are not too soft, like the rest of the outlanders from down below.” The man sat up as well. His long white hair was bound back in many braids, each one tipped with a bead carved from the red wood of the South. An intricate black tattoo covered both his arms. The man’s blue eyes watched Ghost with undisguised amusement. “You have jewels in your head, little one. Did the woman decorate you so?”
“What woman?” Ghost retorted, watching the man for any untoward movement. “Are you talking about the Witch? Is she here?”
“Outlanders do not ask. They listen. And answer.” The man’s voice dropped to a warning snarl. “Hair and eyes do not make you one of us, little one. Do not presume you have a place here.”
Read more here: http://www.torquerepress.com/fiction/ghostsdilemma.html#sample


 

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I’ve always been a writer in some way, whether it was writing on the walls as a child, the copious notebooks I filled as a teen, or the volumes of fan fiction I wrote as an adult. Now I write erotic romance. We are creatures of sensation, craving touch and filled with desires we might not even want to admit to ourselves. Try as we might to ignore and deny the passion inside us, it’s still there. It cries for attention and finds its outlet in my writing.
Ghost’s Sight was written in response to a prompt from a friend and is an impassioned tale of two men who find each other in unexpected circumstances. Their story continues with Ghost’s Dilemma and possibly a third volume yet to come.

Blog / Facebook / FB Series Page / Twitter / Goodreads / Amazon / Pinterest

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Shameless Promo

Time to showcase a couple of my own stories…

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Available here: http://www.loose-id.com/hot-pink-condom.html

McKayla believes she has the best of both worlds. A steady job which allows her to focus on what she does the best at a marketing firm located in downtown Denver. She has had a steady relationship with Kurt, the man of her dreams. Together they explore role playing and that can lead them into areas which allows her to hide behind who she is at the moment.

When she plays someone else, she doesn’t have to focus on her feelings or give them thought, which is fine by her. She witnessed her own parent’s marriage and how badly it fell apart. She would watch her father when he didn’t think she was looking,she saw the misery in his eyes, along with the unshed tears. McKayla swore she’d never allow a partner to do that to her.

McKayla’s world is perfect. Never mind the fact that each time Kurt comes home for the weekend to spend time with her, to have someone to touch, kiss, and have sex with, along with the role-playing, she’s seeing love around her everywhere. And now, she’ss tarts to see a change in her boyfriend that she can’t and won’t face. If she does, she’s sure she’ll lose him.

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Available here:

Roleplaying keeps McKayla safe, keeps her feelings and her emotions in check. All she can think of is the next scene and feeling the man of her dreams giving her the pleasure she craves. She knows, as he does that no matter who holds the crop, no matter who is tied up, no matter what role they are playing, Kurt is the true Alpha, the true Dom to her submissive side. She knows one word from him, her mind instantly melts and awaits his direction.

But she fears her relationship with Kurt is slipping away, because she can’t give him what he really wants. And his long absences for work give her too much time between scenes to fixate on what that is: love. For her to say it. She shows it; she’s damn good at showing it whenever they spend time together. Still, if she says it, everything between them will change forever. If she doesn’t, soon, she may just lose him.

JL Merrow is here for her Relief Valve Blog Tour! Enter to win a copy of her Award Winning book SLAM!

British Lawyers 101 – the Inns and Outs of the British legal profession

Hi, I’m JL Merrow. Thanks for having me here as part of the Relief Valve blog tour.
Today, I’d like to talk about the British legal profession.

Giveaway: I’m offering a free signed paperback copy of 2013 Rainbow Award winning romantic comedy Slam! (I’m happy to ship internationally) to a randomly chosen commenter on the tour, plus a $10 Amazon gift certificate!
I’ll be making the draw around teatime on Monday 7th April, GMT. Good luck! 😀

As I understand it, and feel free to correct me, in the US, all lawyers are created equal; a one-stop shop for all your justice needs. Not so in Britain: here the breed is divided into two distinct sub-species with very different roles:

Barrister

Soliciting
















Wait, no, that’s not right.

Ah, yes. I meant to put in this picture: Working as a Solicitor

Solicitors are usually the first point of contact for your average Brit in need of legal advice. They are found in firms, which are located in ordinary office buildings.
They tend to provide all the services required by the average law-abiding person: wills, house conveyances, that sort of thing. They wear the sort of outfits that would be perfectly unremarkable on the man or woman on the (city) street.

If, however, you’ve been a naughty boy/girl and got on the wrong side of the law, or alternatively something’s got your goat and you have a yen to sue someone, you’ll probably find yourself in need of a barrister to argue your case in court. The chances are it’ll be your solicitor who finds one for you. Barristers congregate in Chambers, which are usually located in rather posher than average office buildings. They wear the sort of outfits which would be perfectly unremarkable on the man—and only the man—on the 17th Century street. Yep, even the women wear ’em. That means wigs and all in the criminal courts, although the wearing of these has been abolished in civil and family courts.

Tom’s sister Cherry in Relief Valve is a barrister, and to be honest Tom doesn’t have much of a clue what she does, making the somewhat sexist assumption (bad Tom!) that she handles divorces and “family stuff”. Interestingly, a 2011 survey by the Bar Standards Board found that female barristers were still outnumbered almost 2 to 1 by male barristers, whereas the gender split is close to 50:50 when it comes to solicitors.

Are the outfits to blame? Let’s face it, horsehair wigs aren’t a good look on anyone, but it could be argued that women get the worst of it, wearing a hairpiece designed for a man.

Then again, some of us have always suspected that men are (a) the more argumentative sex and (b) fonder of the sound of their own voices! 😉

Question: do you see the outdated outfits worn by British lawyers in court as part of a proud old tradition that should be maintained? Or do you think the Bar should embrace the 21st century, sartorially speaking? Or, well, at least the 20th?

***

JL Merrow is that rare beast, an English person who refuses to drink tea. She writes across genres, with a preference for contemporary gay romance, and is frequently accused of humour. Her novel Slam! won the 2013 Rainbow Award for Best LGBT Romantic Comedy.
She is a member of the UK GLBTQ Fiction Meet organising team.
Find JL Merrow online at: http://www.jlmerrow.com, on Twitter as @jlmerrow, and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/jl.merrow

***
Relief ValveIf you dig up the past, be prepared to get dirty
It hasn’t been all smooth sailing since plumber Tom Paretski and P.I. Phil Morrison became connected at the heart, if not always at Tom’s dodgy hip. Neither of their families has been shy about voicing their disapproval, which hasn’t helped Tom’s uneasy relationship with his prickly older sister, Cherry.

But when Cherry is poisoned at her own engagement party, the horror of her near death has Tom’s head spinning with possible culprits. Is it her fiancé Gregory, a cathedral canon with an unfortunate manner and an alarming taste for taxidermy? Someone from her old writers’ circle, which she left after a row? Or could the attack be connected to her work as a barrister?

Phil is just as desperate to solve the case before someone ends up dead—and he fears it could be Tom. At least one of their suspects has a dark secret to hide, which makes Tom’s sixth sense for finding things like a target painted on his back…

Warning: Contains a strong, silent, macho PI; a cheeky, chirpy, cat-owning plumber; and a gag gift from beyond the grave that’ll put the cat firmly among the pigeons.

Now available in ebook: Samhain Publishing | Amazon.com |Amazon.co.uk

Jessica Freely talks about how her Freedom series came to life!

The Freedom Series: How it All Began

I didn’t plan to write a series of science fiction romance stories about a rebel and an office worker. In fact originally, the first story in the Freedom series, Unlawful, was written as a giveaway to readers who purchased my novella, His Own Devices, during release week. But after I wrote it I found I was intrigued by the characters and their world, so I just kept going.


In His Own Devices, my protagonists, Cam and Sunshine, are enslaved by a race of people known as the Hanovans, who live under a corporate oligarchy. The Hanovan Emperor is also the CEO of the all-powerful corporation, Zenesco, that rules everyone’s lives. His Own Devices paints a pretty ugly picture of the Hanovans, and that got me to wondering if all of them were as cruel as the guards we meet in Cam and Sunshine’s story.

I’m not much for the idea that any group of people can be inherently bad, and I had a feeling that maybe not every Hanovan agreed with the way their ruler runs things. Those thoughts were the seeds for Unlawful, and from that first story, the saga of Larke and Droje, two Hanovans who do not fit the mold for what their culture deems proper, or even legal, spun out.

With Unbound, we finally see Larke and Droje with enough time to relax, get to know each other, and spend some quality time. But of course, they are still on the run, they still have a mission, and complications ensue. I hope you’ll enjoy reading about them as they battle enemies within and without in their continuing quest for freedom.

You can contact Jessica at:

Jessica Freely Online:
Website & Blog: http://jessicafreely.com
Amazon Author Page: http://amazon.com/author/jessicafreely
Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/FYXLf
Facebook: http://facebook.com/jfreely
Twitter: http://twitter.com/jessicafreely
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1690113.Jessica_Freely

-thud!- Rick R. Reed is here!!

Lily and me at Gas Works

Thank you for taking some down time and spending it with us. Let’s start this off with a beverage. We have coffee, tea, some sort of juice (I think it’s been in here a few weeks) and soda. What would you like?

What, no alcohol? You want me to open up to you and you can’t offer me a little something to lubricate the process? Girl, what’s up with that?

refreshing_mixed_drinks_w1

Is that better, handsome? Now, will you tell us a little bit about yourself?

Rick R. Reed is all about exploring the romantic entanglements of gay men in contemporary, realistic settings. While his stories often contain elements of suspense, mystery and the paranormal, his focus ultimately returns to the power of love. He is the author of dozens of published novels, novellas, and short stories. He is a three-time EPIC eBook Award winner (for Caregiver, Orientation and The Blue Moon Cafe). Lambda Literary Review has called him, “a writer that doesn’t disappoint.” Rick lives in Seattle with his husband and a very spoiled Boston terrier. He is forever “at work on another novel.”

Visit Rick’s website at www.rickrreed.com or follow his blog at http://rickrreedreality.blogspot.com/. You can also like Rick on Facebook at www.facebook.com/rickrreedbooks  or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/rickrreed. Rick always enjoys hearing from readers and answers all e-mails personally. Send him a message at jimmyfels@gmail.com

When you received news that your manuscript had been accepted what were the first words that fell from your mouth?

“Hey Bruce, what do you want for dinner tonight? You want me to cook or should we order in Thai?” But seriously, it’s always a thrill, made new each time it happens.

What forces brought you over to the MM Genre and what made you want to write it?

Dark, evil forces that took control of my heart and my psyche, forces that refuse to release my soul until I tell the perfect story of the richest and most emotionally-charged m/m romance ever.

Would you care for some cookies? We have chocolate chip, peanut butter, oatmeal with or without raisins and a package of mystery ones. We have cake too. Your choice.

No pot brownies? It’s legal here in my home state, you know. Um, I am watching my waistline, so I’ll skip the cookies. Perhaps you can peel me a grape and mix me up a libation, if you have a heart.

grape

Is this better? Double the fun!!

How many hours a day do you spending writing?

Probably, three or four, most days. But I spend many more hours than that thinking about what I’m going to write.

Do you write right through or do you revise as you go along?

I revise as I go along. My process is to begin my daily work on a new novel by reading and revising what I wrote the day before. That serves two purposes. For one, it gets me in the mood, so it’s sort of like foreplay for my writing mind. And, for another, it helps ensure that, by the time I finish, I have a pretty clean manuscript to submit (not that I don’t read it over and do a big revision once it’s all done, which I do).

When it comes to plotting, do you write freely or plan everything in advance?

I write characters and let them guide me along. In the process, they tell their story or stories. I have tried outlining and planning things out, but the way that works better for me is to just have a general idea of the story I want to tell and where I want to go with it, and just follow my instincts.

Of your characters do you have a favorite and why?

Right now my two favorite characters are Nate and Brandon, my love interests from Hungry for Love. Both guys are sweethearts and each are looking for love but are going about it all wrong. Brandon is sweet and shy and thinks (quite mistakenly) that he is nothing much to look at, when it reality, he’s a total hottie, made even moreso by the fact that he is unaware of his good looks. Nate, on the other hand, is a man of easy virtue and no stranger to the embraces of many men, yet none ever seems to satisfy beyond scratching an immediate itch. The two are destined to find each other, but not until they get through a mountain of deceit. What am I talking about? You’ll have to read the book to find out!

No fair!grumpy-baby

Writers often go on about writer’s block. Do you ever suffer from it, and what measures do you take to get past it?

I’d like to bitch slap those writers that go on about it. I think they’re just looking for an excuse not to sit down and confront putting words to paper (or screen, to be more 21st century). Writing is about inspiration and imagination, sure, but it’s also about discipline. I don’t believe in “writer’s block” and never will.

080911_writers_block

 

Do you have a particular spot in your house that you call your comfy zone? (The place where you write.)

Our guest room is also my office. In the corner against the window (with inspirational views of the Cascade mountain range and Lake Union), I have my desk and file cabinets.

When you’re in the mindset to write, do you put a sign up that warns others not to disturb you while at work?

Well, when I’m writing, my husband is usually at his office downtown, so he’s the only one who would see the sign, so no. I mean, the dog might see it, but she can’t read, so there wouldn’t be much point (and she will not tolerate a closed door, anyway). If I did put up a sign, it would more likely say: “Born in sin? Come on in!”

How would you describe your sense of humor? Who and what makes you laugh?

Vinegary. People slipping and falling…or farting. If they do both at the same time, that’s really hilarious.

What is the most frequently asked Rick question?

voulezvous_coucher_avec_moi_womens_dark_tshirt

Well aren’t you the popular man? Tell us what you’re working on now?

Dinner at Home, a love story that combines my twin passions for food and romance. It will include recipes!

Writing is obviously not just how you make your living, but your life-style as well. What do you do to keep the creative “spark” alive – both in your work and out of it?

Massive amounts of sugar and caffeine and running 4-5 miles a day to ensure I don’t balloon up to 300 pounds.

 What kind of books do you like to read outside of the MM Genre?

Thrillers, mystery, suspense, and horror. My favorite authors are Ruth Rendell, Stephen King, Patricia Highsmith, and Flannery O’Connor.

Pick one: Scientist, Astronaut, Retail, or Horse Trainer-

To sleep with? The one with the biggest…brain.

laughing_like_a_hyena

Aside from writing, what else do you enjoy doing?

I’m doing it as we speak, which makes it difficult, because I only have one hand free for typing.

Laughing_goofy-1

Any special projects coming out soon we should watch for?

I am eagerly anticipating the January 2014 release of my next book, Legally Wed, a very romantic story about a man who wants to take advantage of Washington State’s legalization of same-sex marriage—and the obstacles that stand in his way, including himself. It’s peopled with a wonderful cast of characters and has moments that will make you both laugh out loud and sob, maybe even at the same time.

Can you please tell us where we can find you on the Internet?

Sure. I welcome all of you into my cyberworld:

Web:
www.rickrreed.com

E-mail:
jimmyfels@gmail.com

Twitter:
http://twitter.com/RickRReed

Facebook:
http://www.facebook.com/rickrreedbooks

Blog:
http://rickrreedreality.blogspot.com/

It was a pleasure having you here with us today. Please come by and let us know how you’re doing from time to time. OH! And before you leave, can I get your help here in the kitchen? Thanks!!

Are you out of your mind?

HungryForLove

Blurb

Nate Tippie and Brandon Wilde are gay, single, and both hoping to meet that special man, even though fate has not yet delivered him to their doorstep. Nate’s sister, Hannah, and her kooky best friend, Marilyn, are about to help fate with that task by creating a profile on the gay dating site, OpenHeartOpenMind. The two women are only exploring, but when they need a face and body for the persona they create, they use Nate as the model.

 

When Brandon comes across the false profile, he falls for the guy he sees online. Keeping up the charade, Hannah begins corresponding with him, posing as Nate. Real complications begin when Brandon wants to meet Nate, but Nate doesn’t even know he’s being used in the online dating ruse. Hannah and Marilyn concoct another story and send Nate out to let the guy down gently. But when Nate and Brandon meet, the two men feel an instant and powerful pull toward each other. Cupid seems to have shot his bow, but how do Nate and Brandon climb out from under a mountain of deceit without letting go of their chance at love?

Buy Links

From Dreamspinner Press (ebook): http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=4178

From Dreamspinner Press (paperback):

http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=4179

Amazon Kindle: http://www.amazon.com/Hungry-for-Love-ebook/dp/B00F5KRZOO/

Amazon Paperback: http://www.amazon.com/Hungry-Love-Rick-R-Reed/dp/1627981454/

All Romance Ebooks: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-hungryforlove-1294299-149.html

Rick R. Reed Biography and Contact

Rick R. Reed is all about exploring the romantic entanglements of gay men in contemporary, realistic settings. While his stories often contain elements of suspense, mystery and the paranormal, his focus ultimately returns to the power of love. He is the author of dozens of published novels, novellas, and short stories. He is a three-time EPIC eBook Award winner (for Caregiver, Orientation and The Blue Moon Cafe). Lambda Literary Review has called him, “a writer that doesn’t disappoint.” Rick lives in Seattle with his husband and a very spoiled Boston terrier. He is forever “at work on another novel.”

Visit Rick’s website at www.rickrreed.com or follow his blog at http://rickrreedreality.blogspot.com/. You can also like Rick on Facebook at www.facebook.com/rickrreedbooks  or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/rickrreed. Rick always enjoys hearing from readers and answers all e-mails personally. Send him a message at jimmyfels@gmail.com

 

Reviews

From LIVE YOUR LIFE, BUY THE BOOK

“I loved his writing style, I loved the flow of the book, I didn’t feel like there was anything missing by the time the end of the story came around and I was really able to love Brandon and Nate very easily…this story had romance, love, friendship, deception, jealousy, heartbreak…. Read the review: http://liveyourlifebuythebook.wordpress.com/2013/09/05/hungry-for-love/.

From ON TOP DOWN UNDER BOOK REVIEW

“…overall, I really enjoyed this book…it was perfect…” Read the review: http://ontopdownunderbookreviews.com/hungry-for-love-rick-r-reed/.

From MRS. CONDIT AND FRIENDS READ BOOKS

“…written beautifully with humor, and love, and intelligence. Rick Reed has done a wonderful, wonderful job with this story!!” Read the review: http://mrsconditreadsbooks.com/index.php/?p=14621.

From AMOS LASSEN REVIEWS

“Reed has never been afraid to tackle the important issues of the LGBT community and here he looks at friendship, love, lies, heartbreak and jealousy while creating characters that we can identify with and grow to love.” Read the review: http://reviewsbyamoslassen.com/?p=24500.

From USA Today

“I’ve gotten distracted reading a book before but never because I stopped to marvel at the genius of the author…sigh worthy….” Read the review: http://www.usatoday.com/story/happyeverafter/2013/09/13/recommended-rhys-ford-rick-r-reed-cardeno-c/2807953/.

Excerpt

http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=4178

Jaime Samms Day!!

I’m talking about all those bugaboos that throw us as readers out of the books we read, and that we authors should maybe think about while we’re writing. (See how I did that crossing the line thing between writer and reader just there?) I dance all over that line every day, always have, my whole life, so I hope I can speak to what happens on the other side, no matter where I am at any given time. I already know the secret behind the curtain, and I’m here to share.

I’ve been thinking, as happens occasionally, and reading, and it’s funny that I noticed something about the books I’ve read lately. The guys have been really not the typical fare I’m used to in gay romance.

Item: the jock who can cook. Well.

Item: The self proclaimed “arty wanker” who can’t get enough of his favorite sports teams and goes as blindly, loyally off the cliff with that losing team every season, just like a lot of guys I know.

Item: The math geek who loves watching baseball.

Gay men all, being depicted in ways that turn stereotypes on their ears and make you pay attention to what makes these guys themselves, and not just another place holder in the soft porn-with-a-bit-of-plot romance we can become a little bit inured to.

Now, I’ve always thought (read hoped) that I write interesting and non-clichéd characters. Lots of people would question how I know enough about gay men to be able to write about them. What can I tell those people? I’m not a gay man. This much is obvious. I’m a woman in a hereto marriage sitting firmly in the middle of the rainbow.

I’ve often wondered what men think about the men I write. Do they seem like the men they know? The men they hang out with? The men they might date? Some have said yes, my men are sufficiently manly to pass as gay men, and I’m pretty proud of that, since my experience with men deals mostly with my straight, and sadly uninformed and often unacceptably biased relatives. But I have a lot of them around. I can write men. I know men. I just don’t know a lot of gay men other than my friends on line.

So I write with what experience I have in mind, and hope I don’t screw up the relationships too badly. I bring this up because I know this issue comes up a lot; people deciding that women writing gay romance are bound to write men who are less than, well, less than what, exactly? Less manly? Less male? Or just more like the women who write them, maybe. Like at least one of the men in the story is a placeholder for the female in the relationship. It’s a concern, and I imagine that at least some of the time, it’s born out. And I can understand why that would piss a guy off.

Now, think about this: Haven’t women objected to being fetishized and objectified in writing, movies and other media for, well, for decades upon decades? I might get in trouble for drawing this comparison, but bear with me for a moment. I’m not just talking about the Sheik and his kidnapped sex slave here. I’m talking about the strong, independent woman virginalized so her man can show her all the wonders of the bedroom, and the princess, presumably being trained to run a country (or a fortune 500 company) who needs a prince to save her. These are not role models I want for either of my children, the girl or the boy. I want my daughter to grow up knowing she has a right to her own sexuality and not to feel ashamed of it, and being confident and competent enough not to need a man. I want my son to grow up respecting the women in his life, caring for them, and honouring them and their right to know more than him and be stronger than him, because sometimes, this is the case. (Sorry guys. Gay or straight. You know it’s true.)

So why would men want these stereo types any more than we do? Simple. They wouldn’t. And I they’re right to take up arms and defend their right to be humanized in the books about them. I think that’s fair, after all. As a woman, I would demand the same. As a mother, I want my daughter to be more like Mulan or Merida than Snow White, and my son more like…um…help me out here, because I’m not coming up with a good Disney role model for my boy….anyway. I want there to be real people in the books I read, people like me, so when I write, I try to write about real people. Fallible, heroic, illogical, feeling, smart, dynamic people.