Tag Archives: gay romance

Cover Reveal: Just a Week by Jena Wade

 

JenaWade_JustAWeek_COVERLG

Release: July 14th, 2016

Publisher: Loose Id

Blurb:

Just a week is not enough time to fall in love, but Fate doesn’t care. Seth’s carefully crafted plan for how his life will go doesn’t include falling in love with a guy in his horrible hometown. He wants to start a new life anywhere but at home. Until Maddox storms in with his multi-colored hair and carefree attitude.

Long distance relationships don’t work and Seth isn’t into gambling with his future. But the more time he spends with Maddox, the more he’s willing to throw caution to the wind. Now his plan for the rest of his life has been turned upside down and seems to include things Seth never thought possible, including a lifetime of happiness in his hometown.

 

Excerpt:

I headed out the door and grabbed the book I started a few days ago out of my car. In high school I would always go to the park and read when it was nice out. My parents were happy knowing I got fresh air, and I was happy just to get lost in the world of whatever book had captured my attention.

I found my usual bench unoccupied. Thank goodness. It sat underneath a giant oak tree that provided a good amount of shade. About a hundred feet away sat a set of playground equipment for kids. Since it was Sunday evening, there weren’t many kids around.

The screech and clicks of skateboards on metal had me looking around like I’d just entered a parallel universe. What the hell?

Where there used to be old basketball hoops with raggedy nets, there now stood a half-pipe and other random obstacles used for skateboarding tricks. A half dozen teenagers and young adults whizzed around each other. Some on boards, others on rollerblades. All of them moving at high speed.

There was a lot of laughing, and every so often someone shouted, “Check this out,” before trying some stunt on the rail, usually resulting in a fall or stumble.

Squealing kids on a swing set I could drown out. But this, I wasn’t so sure about. It was new. And distracting.

One young man in particular stood out. Mostly because he had bright orange hair that spiked in every direction, possibly looking like it could impale a person if they were to touch it. Like a cactus. He also looked a bit older than the teenagers that surrounded him, which might explain why they all seemed to look up to him like he was a god.

He wore a black zip-up sweatshirt, though it was warm enough to go without, and jeans that were skintight.

Once I started watching him, I noticed that the other skaters watched him too. He had talent. He kept his balance well, and his moves seemed effortless. While the other skaters floundered and wobbled as they zoomed around, he kept calm and collected.

I didn’t understand the appeal of skateboarding, especially on a half-pipe. What was the purpose of putting yourself in harm’s way like that? Might as well throw myself down a flight of stairs if I wanted to break a bone.

Orange-haired Guy stood on the deck of the half-pipe. He stared down the slope below, his face unreadable. He didn’t call the others to gather around and watch, though I had a feeling they would anyway.

He took a deep breath and hopped on his board.

I held my breath, like I was the one up there. I watched in wonder as he gained momentum, back and forth, up and down the half-pipe. Once he had enough speed he began his flips. It looked amazing to me. Him flipping in the air, his feet staying on the board as he spun, then landing perfectly to do it all over again. I guess I had never bothered to watch any skateboarding before. Maybe I would have if they had looked like this skateboarder.

My nose pressed against the chain-link fence that surrounded the skate park before I even realized I had walked closer. At least I started breathing again.

He stopped just as quickly as he started. Landing back on the deck of the half-pipe, like he hadn’t just done something incredible. And maybe it wasn’t to him; maybe that was just another day in the life. To me it was pretty cool.

The other skaters around cheered and gave him high fives as he made his way through the park. Just like that, he left. He hit the sidewalk and hopped back on to his board, flying down the street like it was made for him.

I snapped out of it. What the hell just happened? I don’t gawk. I never gawk.

I rushed back to my regular bench, picked up my book, and headed home, no longer in the mood to read. At least not outside. At home inside my room there wouldn’t be any distractions. Visions of the orange-haired guy floated through my head, and I couldn’t shake them. I blamed the jet lag.

Never mind the fact that I didn’t fly home. Nor did I go through any time zones. Traveling had tired me out, and I wasn’t thinking straight.

Just a week. Then I would be back where I belonged and where things were normal. Routine. The way I liked it.

 

Bio:

Jena Wade began writing in January of 2013 as a New Year’s resolution and so far she has stuck to it.

Jena lives in Michigan with her husband, two dogs, and one brand new baby boy. By day she works as a web developer and at night she writes. She was born and raised on a farm and spends most of her free time outdoors, playing in the garden or tending to her landscaping.

Links:

The Jena Wade: www.thejenawade.com

Loose Id: http://www.loose-id.com/authors/erotic-romance-authors-g-k.html?cat=699

Twitter: thejenawade.twitter.com

 


Balancing Act is Out! #giveaway #MMRomance

 

balancingact

It’s here! It’s here! It’s really, really here!

I’m so excited for everyone to catch up with Kyrie and Greg, and to meet Andy–finally!

 

Blurb:

Greg Dwyer and Kyrie Li are living the glorious couple life in New York City. Or are they? When struggling actor Kyrie lands a modeling job, he’s ecstatic to have extra cash to spend on his best-friend-turned-boyfriend.

Of course, Greg is suspicious Anders Berglund, the gorgeous and androgynous Swedish cover model the designers love to pair with Kyrie, is after his man. And maybe Kyrie encourages a growing closeness with the guy?

Greg is probably to blame if Kyrie is drawn to the openly gay and seriously beautiful Andy. With Andy, Kyrie can be himself, as loud and proud as he’s always been. But Greg’s sexuality stays firmly locked in the closest except when he’s with Kyrie’s supportive family or alone with the man he loves.

To make matters worse, Greg’s out-of-touch mom meets with financial ruin and moves in with the couple, forcing him into the closet in his own home.

Can Greg find a way to stand up to Mommy Dearest and win back a love he fought so hard to reach? He discovers the road to pride begins at home and with accepting oneself first. Otherwise, it’s just a dead-end street.

Excerpt:

Two changing screens filled a large portion of the next room. A woman stood at the rack of clothes, organizing and examining them. She beckoned Kyrie over. He recognized some of his attire hanging before her.

“I’m not confident about the fit in the chest, Daphne.” A soft voice with a delightful Nordic lilt came from behind the screen to his right.

The tall brunette turned. “Let’s see. I can take it in if need be.” Daphne put her hands on her hips, and Anders Berglund stepped out. He wore a black ball gown with ebony feathers accenting the bodice. They created a starkly jagged edge against his bare skin. The material gapped before his pale chest, and Daphne was immediately behind him, tugging, marking the fabric with a piece of chalk.

“Hey.” Anders smiled and waved his fingers at Kyrie. “Pleasure to meet you. Ky-ree, right?”

“Close. Rhymes with dearie.”

“Kyrie,” Anders tried again. The subtle extra accent on the first syllable didn’t belong but pleased Kyrie immensely.

He grinned like a fool. “That’s me. I’m absolutely-positively-beyond-excited to be working with you.” He stepped forward, hand out, and Anders Berglund took the offering. His grip wasn’t overly firm, soft skin hiding delicate bones beneath.

“My agent sent me your test shots once he found out we were working together.” The words were slow and measured, especially striking on the heels of Kyrie’s run-on exclamation. Anders’ accent hinted of British influence on certain words. Must have learned the Queen’s version. “The camera really loves you.”

“I’m just hoping not to look like a troll next to the world’s current it model.” Kyrie knew he was attractive; he could claim pretty even, with the slight Asian slant to his unusual amber eyes. They popped against the light brown of his skin, accented further by thick, long lashes every woman he met was jealous of.

But Anders Berglund was flawless. His face was already made up: kohl-ringed turquoise eyes framed with what had to be fake lashes, his skin powdered to pale perfection, and berry-red lips with just the right amount of fullness and a perpetual sexy pout whether he was dressed as a man or a woman. His bone structure was impeccable, including high cheeks and the graceful neck to go with his six-foot-tall, ultra-thin frame. Straw-blond hair was piled on his head, escaped locks artfully framing his face. Women wished they looked like him. Men wanted to fuck him, at least until they realized the gorgeous supermodel was actually a man downstairs. And certainly, some men were still hot for him afterward.

Anders Berglund was far from Kyrie’s type, but he could appreciate iconic beauty when it stared back.

“Hah. I don’t think you could ever be a troll.” Anders scratched his shoulder with two fingers where the tip of a feather had to be driving him insane.

“I’m tempted to do stick-on boobs.” Daphne yanked tight again. “But Syd wants you completely feminine with your natural parts. She likes how skinny you are.”

“Whatever she wants.”

“Yeah, I’ll stitch this up a bit tighter.” She unzipped the back of the dress and slid it down. Anders stepped out and stood in black stockings held up by a garter with matching briefs. He waved at Kyrie, all bright white skin, jutting ribs, long limbs, and sharp hip bones. He looked breakable despite his height, like a piece of fine china.

“Get dressed,” Daphne snapped at Kyrie. “We don’t want to keep Syd waiting.”

“I would have come an hour early just to avoid hearing that a thousand times.”

Anders’ mouth twitched up. Daphne glared.

The off-white tux behind the other screen wasn’t part of the stash of clothes Kyrie had taken home. He’d been measured at the callback, and the powers that be had custom ordered additional pieces. He slipped into the slim-leg cream pants. If the benefactors of the Spectrum Spectacular truly had cut corners with some of the underthings, the suit was an exception. It draped precisely over his hips, and he twisted to check his ass in the full-length mirror in the center panel of the screen. The silk shirt pressed cool kisses to his chest with every movement he made.

In shape from almost daily running, Kyrie normally relied on skintight pants and formfitting shirts to best display his attributes, but this designer-cut clothing thing he could totally get used to. He scrutinized his butt again as he shrugged into the jacket with black-trimmed lapel.

If Greg could see me now…

Kyrie knotted the black bow tie and stepped out wearing a grin and a kick-tail tux. Daphne was fussing with Anders again, his ball gown back in place.

“What do you say, Andy? May I have this dance?” He swept into a low bow.

Anders gave a soft laugh. “Of course.”

“You’ll need your lifts first.” Daphne pointed toward a pair of black dress shoes. The soles were at least an inch thicker than normal.

“Huh.” Kyrie stepped into the shoes, grumbling and shooting death rays with his eyes. Daphne finished with Anders, and it was Kyrie’s turn to be plucked like a Thanksgiving turkey. By the time she sent him out to the first shoot staging, Kyrie had begun to wonder why anyone would want to be a model.

 


Find Balancing Act:

Liquid Silver Publishing

Amazon

All Romance eBooks

Google Play

iTunes

Kobo

Add Balancing Act to Goodreads!

 

 

***To celebrate the release of Balancing Act, I’m giving away a beautiful silver choker necklace with abalone pendant!***

Click away!

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What I #AmReading

These:

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It’s writing research, not personal (no, my teenager doesn’t have an eating disorder and hopefully never will).

I know this reading list makes Andy’s book sound like a ton of fun. :-/  You’ll just have to trust I’ll find a way to make it amazeballs.

I’ve finished Beyond Magenta. It’s a quick read I’d recommend to anyone who is at all curious about what life can be like for young transgender people. This is just a taste, really, but I think it could be a useful introductory text, especially for parents trying to understand and help their transgender child (some stories are a lesson in what not to do or say, of course). It’s brief (to a fault), but worth the read. I was glad it included some nonbinary viewpoints, though the scope could/should have been much greater, IMO.

Now I’m reading Answers to Anorexia, which addresses nutritional deficits and how they can aggravate the anorexia cycle. Pretty interesting for a grim topic.

In other news, the release day for Balancing Act is June, 27th, so mark your calendars! 🙂 I’ll have a cover reveal soon…but for now, here’s the disguised version. Mwahahahhahahahahha!

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Send Lawyers, Guns, and Roses by Heloise West

Send Lawyers, Guns, and Roses by Heloise West releases on April 19, 2016. It’s the sequel to Hitting Black Ice, so I recommend you pick up the first in Heloise’s Heart and Haven series right now (if you haven’t already) so you’ll be primed for book two next week. Both novels are action-packed and sure to please any MM mystery lover!

HeloiseWest_SendLawyersGunsandRoses

Blurb:

When Hunter and Alex (formally Shawn) are given the vacation of a lifetime, it’s a chance for them to pay attention to romance and get out of the path of danger. The tiny Caribbean island of Saba is gorgeous, the first to have marriage equality, and the Sabans are the nicest people on earth.

There’s lots of rum poolside for relaxing and a room with a mirror on the ceiling for passion. Hot karaoke nights, cold beer, and new friends.

Their new friends Orfeo and Max, and Max’s sister Talisha, share a troubling secret. Alex and Hunter want to help. As a hurricane bears down on them, a dead body surfaces, and a purple backpack loaded with stolen jewels leads a pair of dangerous men to the island.

Alex would rather poke his own eyes out with a pointy stick than call on his old enemy Nick Truman for help; he’d also do anything to keep Hunter out of danger. But even his nemesis can’t reach them now.

Once again, they only have each other to depend on as their paradise is about to become hell on earth.

 

Hitting Black Ice:heloisewest_hittingblackice

ER physician’s assistant Hunter guards his heart carefully, but that doesn’t stop him from falling for Shawn, the front desk clerk.  He keeps his distance from relationships for a reason, but just can’t help himself when it comes to Shawn.

Shawn is on the run from the law and love to protect himself and anyone else involved. One man is dead because of him, and his life now is simple and easily thrown into a bag at any hint of danger. Until he meets Hunter, and he no longer wants to run.

Forced into a hostage situation, buried passion explodes in the aftermath, and sex in the supply closet brings their hearts back to life. Tentatively, step by step, they begin to explore a relationship together until the past catches up with Shawn.

FBI agent Nick Truman has finally found his man, but when Shawn escapes, he focuses his attention on Hunter. Shawn returns, even though it means sacrificing himself to save Hunter from the man who framed him for murder.

Buy Links:

http://www.loose-id.com/hitting-black-ice.html

http://www.amazon.com/Hitting-Black-Ice-Heloise-West-ebook/dp/B00QJEJ7VO/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-hittingblackice-1689874-340.html

 

About Heloise West:

Heloise West, when not hunched over the keyboard plotting love and mayhem, dreams about moving to a villa in Tuscany. She loves history, mysteries, and romance of all flavors. She travels and gardens with her partner of 10 years, and their home overflows with books, cats, art, and red wine.

Where to find Heloise:

Blogs: https://velvetpanic2.wordpress.com/

Website: http://heloisewest.wix.com/heloisewest

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/heloise.west.1

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/heloisewest/

Email: heloise_67@hotmail.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/velvetpanic

Tumblr: http://heloisewest.tumblr.com/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8188216.Heloise_West


Balancing Act is Official! #LGBT #Gay #Romance

I just signed a contract for Balancing Act with Liquid Silver Books! It feels good to be back in the saddle after a rather long writing hiatus, and I’m trying hard not to let the Samhain news tarnish what is usually one of the greatest highs I know. I’m also plugging along on the new book in my Shooting Stars series starring mega-model Andy (who you’ll meet in BA. By the way, I love shortening Balancing Act to BA. Cracks me up). So far so good with the current WIP. You can check out my Pinterest board for Vic, Andy’s smokin’ hot bad boy bodyguard. I’ll keep adding, so feel free to follow along for more of my inspirational photos. 😉 I think you’re going to love these two and I’ve definitely fallen for them, so that certainly makes the writing easier.

To celebrate BA releasing sometime in the next three/four months, I’ll give you a teaser (unedited, of course)kyrie. 🙂

 

Blurb:

Greg Dwyer and Kyrie Li are living the glorious couple life in New York City. Or are they? When struggling actor Kyrie lands a modeling job, he’s ecstatic to be able to pitch in for his share of the mortgage and to plan a secret birthday vacation for his best-friend-turned-boyfriend.

Of course, Greg is suspicious that Anders Berglund, the gorgeous and androgynous Swedish cover model the designers love to pair with Kyrie, is after his man. And maybe Kyrie is encouraging a growing closeness with the guy.

Greg is probably to blame if Kyrie is drawn to the openly gay and seriously beautiful Andy. With Andy, Kyrie can be himself, as loud and proud as he’s always been. But Greg’s

sexuality stays firmly locked in the closest except for when he’s with Kyrie’s supportive family or alone with the man he loves.

To make matters worse, Greg’s out-of-touch mom meets with financial ruin and moves in with the couple, forcing him into the closet in his own home.

Can Greg find a way to stand up to mommy dearest and win back a love he fought so hard to reach? He discovers the road to pride begins at home, and with accepting oneself first. Otherwise, it’s just a dead-end street.

(NSFW) Excerpt:

Kyrie loved being the seductive bottom; getting Greg all worked up with his teasing and flirting. Backing off while Greg simmered. Then Kyrie would stoke him higher, pressing further until Greg eventually broke and became the domineering top. Usually they let the game go for a while, pushing each other’s buttons in their own drawn-out version of foreplay.

The sliver of pain slicing down Kyrie’s crack paired succulently with the throbbing wood pressed against his lower belly. All signs told him they were going straight to sudden death—no warm up, no scrimmage, just hot, fast action. Game on.

“What’re you gonna do to me?”

“I should make you beg.” Greg grabbed Kyrie’s hard-on with his other hand. “Make you drop on your knees and suck me off. Then get me hard again for your turn.” Kyrie whimpered, his mouth filling with saliva. “Get my cock nice and wet before I feed it to that greedy ass of yours.”

“Yes.” It was a husky wanton word, more moan than speech. Kyrie closed his eyes and in the darkness the scruff he adored grazed his chin and cheeks as Greg’s lips covered his. His tongue split Kyrie’s mouth open, not like he didn’t want it, but the coy act was a tough one to break. Well, Greg broke it. Butchered it. Tenderized Kyrie’s tongue with his own until Kyrie’s thighs quivered and the strip of spandex jammed up his ass became another lover he wanted to hump when his pelvic thrusts pitched him away from the hard slab of man rutting against his front.

Greg cupped Kyrie’s balls again. “Whose are these?”

“Yours.” Kyrie’s breath stuttered while Greg dragged fingers over his cock, a bit hard, a bit rough. Absolutely perfect.

“Whose dick it this?” Greg milked precome from Kyrie like a seasoned farmhand, leaning down to bite Kyrie’s lower lip nearly hard enough to draw blood. Kyrie groaned.

“Yours, Greg.”

“Turn around.” In case Kyrie wasn’t about to follow orders, Greg spun him so his palms slapped the wall, his face pressed to cool paint as Greg slid warm hands up and under Kyr’s mesh top. He pinched his erect nipples, eliciting a gasp, and then stroked Kyrie’s satin-covered dick before heading back toward his waistband. Kyrie braced for another tug upward, but Greg surprised him by yanking his underwear down. The burn on his crack flared and abated, and then Greg’s fingers, slick with spit, were drifting down the cleft and pressing against his hole like a balm.

“Whose tight ass is this, Kyr?”

Jealous horny Greg had to be Kyrie’s favorite sex toy. “It can be yours.”

Greg punished, or maybe rewarded him, with a thick pointer finger piercing him fully, no warning. Kyrie sobbed, cheek hitting the wall. Greg’s mouth found his earlobe, biting, and then licking, his finger fucking Kyrie slowly while the hard cock caged in fine wool mimicked the action against Kyrie’s lower back. “Just mine.” Greg growled against his ear, nipping at the delicate skin below before sucking it into his mouth for a second. “You don’t want me marking you for your photo shoot, you better give me the right answer.”

————–

Yay! Sorry for the HUGE wait on this book. Hopefully it will be worth it! 🙂 By the way, if you haven’t read Hard Act to Follow yet, you might want to get on that since Balancing Act continues with Greg and Kyrie’s story (as well as introduces Andy, who gets the next book).

-Kimber

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Free story when you sign up for my totally unspammy newsletter!


Villains with Vaginas

I was on social media the other day (shocking, I know) and stumbled over a thread that piqued my interest. Someone had read a book in which women seemed to be vilified to the point of misogyny. The disappointed reader said it was a theme she’d been running into frequently and numerous other readers chimed in that they had the same issue with MM books. I haven’t read the book in question, so I can’t speak to its content, but women being portrayed negatively in gay romance is hardly a new phenomenon. Readers have been complaining about it for years.

When I first began writing MM, rumblings about women being cast as conniving harpies abounded on review sites–every female in nearly every book was pure evil. Or there were no females in books, in other cases.

Female sorcerer with two troll beasts

Long ago, I vowed to be super conscientious about how my female characters came across. And then I largely washed my hands of the worry. Seriously, I’m the girl who likes to joke that women can’t do X because their vaginas are so cumbersome they get in the way. I used to go to parties in HS to challenge dudes to mercy competitions just to prove what a bad ass I was. Well, and to drink (shot for shot with the guys, of course). Yeah, also to get laid because treating men the way I perceived they’d treated women since the dawn of time–like a piece of meat to be used–was my shtick, I’m rather ashamed to say (they rarely minded, for the record, so I guess I won’t feel too guilty).

My point is, I’m not the girl who thinks women are in any way inferior to men (really–why would any woman think that?). I mean, we squeeze squalling 8 lb beings from our bodies and then we’re like, give me some fucking pizza and let me walk around or I’ll drown you in breast milk. If anything, I’ve got a chip on my shoulder when it comes to how undervalued women are.

Yet, whenever I see these posts, I get paranoid.

I shouldn’t. I know I shouldn’t. I am woman, with better plumbing, carpentry, and electrical skills than most men I know. Hear me roar. I won’t even mention my chest hair (I blame gin).

Oh, but people were complaining about the evil fictional ex-wife! The evil mother-in-law!

Well, I’ve written a character mid-divorce in a nasty custody battle. Yes, his wife came off witchy, but she’d given her best years to a guy and wanted to keep her kid. No, she wasn’t nice to her soon-to-be ex-husband, but I’ve seen more ugly divorces than I can count, and I don’t think a bit of reality is untoward. Guaranteed, if I’d been writing from the ex-wife’s POV, Gio would have looked like a total cobnobbler.

Not that anyone has accused me of defaming women. But the conversation makes me rethink every female character I’ve ever written. Was she too bitter? Did I make all women look bad by writing one woman going through a shitastic stage in her life? Should I never write female characters I wouldn’t want to be friends with IRL? Should I never write a female as an antagonist for fear of being labeled a misogynist?

I have more awesome women than bitchy women in my books, when I do the math. Probably equal amounts antagonistic men to antagonistic women. Realistically, someone needs to be the adversary in contemporary romance.

And then I just wrote a rather unlikable mother-in-law(ish)…

Maybe exes and MILs are overdone at this point. Maybe that’s the problem, in which case, contemporary MM may be overdone too because, well, as I know I’ve complained before, we can’t just pull a (sexless) monster out of our asses to make a villain.

Now, is Greg’s mom in my latest book (Balancing Act~~Coming soon to a website near you! Shameless plug!) absolute evil? No. Not even remotely. Matter of fact, she’s based on a woman I happen to adore. Is she a horse-pill to swallow? Oh, you bet your ass. On the flip side, Kyrie’s mom is a love, she just doesn’t get major screen time in this book. Same for his cool friend, Liv.

Nice can be boring, TBH. Suspense doesn’t come from that totally humorous Comic-Con scene I keep contemplating. A book needs to move forward and then get kicked in the teeth to make it step back. It needs tension. Bad guys and bad girls.

Sigh. No one was complaining about my characters, so I know I shouldn’t get all twitchy about this. And, yes, if I happen to come across a book that makes me think the author hates women, I’ll get way fucking twitchier, but I hate how this conversation makes me think twice about using female characters at all. Much like complaints about authors writing persons of color incorrectly make me nervous about just writing any damn character that comes to mind.

I don’t want to shy away from female characters–or any characters. Occasionally, I even want to write a hard-nosed bitch. Just as sometimes I want to write a psychotic would-be murderer who happens to have a penis. Neither one makes me a misogynist or a misandrist.

I guess I’ll just keep reminding myself of that and follow wherever my characters lead. No fear. After all, they’re in charge–even if that means they come off a little cunty sometimes.

Hey, don’t we all?

-Kimber

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How About a #Freebie?

I realized this morning I wasn’t going to do a Wednesday post this week because it’s already Thursday. Doh! That MLK day really screwed with my head. I’ve been wonky all week (more wonky than usual, I should say).

The newsletter signup and freebie are a go, after much agony from Calibre for some reason I still haven’t figured out. So, make my pain worthwhile and use this link to sign up for your free e-copy of “The Ferryman Cometh.”

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I won’t spam you, I swear on all that is good and holy. I’ll only send the rare newsletter to let you know when I have something new coming out. Promise. Realistically, I can barely make myself blog, so that should give you an accurate sense of how often I’ll compose newsletters.

Okay, I’ve spent entirely too long in front of a computer today. I’m going to go pour a glass of wine and make some freakin’ meatloaf so kids can tell me it’s yucky in an hour because that’s the kind of day it’s been.

XOXO,

Kimber

 

 

 


#BlackFriday Comes Early!

Crossed HeartsOne heart’s been broken. The other is secondhand.

My book, Crossed Hearts, is on sale for 99 cents during a limited time Black Friday event! That’s right, 212 pages of sweet romance, hot lovin’, and feels, feels, feels. It’s a bargain at twice the price. If you haven’t yet picked up Crossed Hearts, now is your chance to read Kory and Will’s story for mere pennies.

No one even likes pennies!

Okay, enough of my sales pitch, but, seriously, you should totally buy it.

Here’s an excerpt for ya:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

When Kory stepped out of the shower, Will was gone. Kory opened the door and poked his head out into the early-evening humidity. No car. His eyes stung—had to be the neon orange of the drooping sun—and, shoulders hunched, he made for the kitchen to put together a shitty meal for one, made all the shittier by this rejection.

Probably for the best. Did you really think you could start a platonic relationship with an adorable gay guy?

Sure, Will played the stern authoritarian pretty damn well, but something about him seemed vulnerable and enticingly sweet at the same time. Maybe it was the odd expression that flashed across his face when Kory let his flirtatious nature win out. He couldn’t identify the vibe he got, couldn’t even say for certain it was real, but whatever those hopeful sparks followed by tiny frowns were, they called to Kory’s most basic instincts.

A guy who helps everyone else, but never has his own needs met. That Kory was the last man in the world who could add anything of value to Will’s life was irony at its best. Because he wanted to be the guy to do it, and he recognized that same yearning in his own eyes when he looked in the mirror. In his own heart now when it squeezed at the realization he’d misinterpreted Will’s cordial demeanor for something more—that he’d put himself out there and gotten turned down in the rudest possible way.

Not even a freakin’ note—

A scrap of paper on the pitted Formica countertop, right next to a pile of bills, caught his attention. He held his breath as he picked it up.

Ran home to change into comfy clothes. I’ll grab something better than mac & cheese. See you in a few.
-Will

Hot relief flooded him, tempering the ache of rejection with muscle-melting anticipation. Grinning, Kory rummaged through the fridge and stood with a shriveled apple. He cut the bruises off with a steak knife before demolishing it in a matter of seconds. Then he grabbed his sketchbook, a hard graphite pencil and a softer one for shading, and sat on the couch to wait for his new friend to show.

The loud rumble of the AC lulled him into a meditative state as he scratched the drawing of an emaciated apple core. He was putting the final touches on it and scrawling the word hungry in box letters at the bottom when a knock sounded on the door.

The bag in Will’s hand smelled amazing, but Will himself looked more than appetizing in dark jeans and a gray short-sleeved shirt that revealed toned arms lightly dusted with dark hair.

“Are you comfy now?”

Will frowned. “What?”

“Your note. I half expected you’d be wearing pajamas.” Kory waved him in, grabbing the grocery bag from Will’s hands. “What do we have here?”

“Umm, fried chicken, mashed potatoes, and coleslaw. It was fast. Sorry it’s not the healthiest.” Will frowned as if he’d done something wrong.

“Are you kidding? You show up with Thanksgiving dinner and you’re apologizing? I could kiss you right now for saving me from powdered cheese and noodles.” Will pursed his lips, but it looked more like displeasure than invitation. Crap. I’m never gonna say the right thing. Friends, Kory. Friends. “Hey, my dead, starved body won’t be on your ambulance run in the next few days, especially if you leave the leftovers.” Kory pulled Will over the threshold before he could escape, and waved him toward the couch. “Did you get a chance to select tonight’s feature film before you left?”

Will scanned the apartment and then gave Kory a questioning look.

“The sweet rack of VHS over there. Someone was giving them away. Can you believe it? And I picked up a VCR at the Salvation Army for two bucks.”

Will burst out laughing. “I brought some tapes to the dump about five or six years ago. Wish I’d saved them for you.”

“Fucker.” Kory snorted, stuck between elation at Will’s contagious smile and his own embarrassment. “Go check out the selection. You don’t like anything you see, you can leave. Without your bird and taters.”

He walked toward the kitchen to scrape together plates and silverware, and hoped Will could handle his humor. If not…well, there were certain things he couldn’t glaze over and get past. No funny bone was one. Bad kisser was the other major offense he would never be able to overlook. If he had to choose which was worse—frog-tongue kisser or stick-in-the-mud humor—he was incapable of pointing out the greater evil. They both sucked at the root canal level.

Will expelled a relieved whistle as he examined the collection.

“What’s up?”

“For some reason I was afraid this would be a rack of porn.”

“What?” The potato fork spun from Kory’s fingers and landed on the counter with a clatter and a miniature explosion of spuds.

“Eh, just my ex-boyfriend’s idea of a movie night, I guess.” Will glanced up, his cheeks red. “The only VHS he held onto were old porno flicks. Not that I think you would…and probably not even the same…” He trailed off and turned back toward the tape spines, running a hand through his hair.
Kory coughed. “Never watch it, myself.” That’d be like taking work home. Besides, he inevitably hated the way he looked on screen, or the way he delivered some cheesy line. At the end of the day, being on a shoot for hours was way more porn than he wanted to see.

“Wow.” Will turned back with a cautious smile and still-pink cheeks.

“Not a porn fan and you have this? I’m starting to think I’m being punked.” He held up Labyrinth.

Part of Kory felt like a liar. Another part of him argued it was a harmless omission, a white lie even, given that sweet, wistful look on Will’s face. Kory wasn’t the same person anymore. What Will didn’t know wouldn’t hurt either of them. Kory could feel him out and maybe confess later, not scare Will away at the starting line. That Will didn’t watch porn made it perfect—made Will perfect. Here was someone without any preconceived biases about who Kory was or wasn’t. And more than anything he wanted to be liked for who he truly was, even if he was still stumbling his way through Kory Vansant 101 in many ways.

~~~~~~~~~~~~

There you have it.

Actually, here you have it:

Amazon

All Romance

Smashwords

 

XOXO,

Kimber

 

 


Rockin’ Reads #Giveaway Blog Hop!

Everyone needs a Rockin’ Read! Stop by Sept 23rd to 30th and find out which reads have rocked 2015 for us! There will be a giveaway on each blog so don’t forget to visit them all!

rockin reads

Hey, everyone! Today marks the beginning of the Rockin’ Reads Hop, and I’m stoked to be a participant. Whoop!

This is the part of my post where I should gush over a romance that completely rocked my world in 2015. The catch is, I’ve been reading a lot of history lately (yes, non-fiction, but often that shit is stranger than fiction). I’ve been doing a bunch of beta reading for writerly pals, and reading gardening journals (cough, cough–nerd). I’m re-reading some early Patricia Cornwell because those were the days…

So, basically, I’m not going to gush over a romance, although I’ve read a number this year, just nothing that’s sticking out like a knife handle from my back.

Anyway, I have a few books in my queue I’m looking forward to–a couple of KJ Charles’ I need to catch up on, some old school het bodice rippers (I think I’m having a midlife crisis–this is a scream for help), some YA stuff (including The Outsiders because I’ve not read it, my oldest is going to be hitting that for English class, and I thought, hey, buddy read).

So, there you have it. Don’t hate me because I’m in a romance funk. I’ll find my way out eventually, I promise.

For my giveaway, I’ll send one lucky winner an e-copy of either Forever is Now or Double Takes, both rockstar reads that fit nicely with this hop theme, I think. To be eligible, just leave a book recommendation for me in the comments. I want my socks fucking knocked off. Ladies and gentlemen, start my engines. 😉

Oh, and don’t forget to visit all the stops in the below link! Freebies and recommendations out the wazoo! Think I’ll go check those out right now…

http://theherdhops.blogspot.com/2015/09/rockin-reads-giveaway-hop.html


New Release Spotlight: If I Were Fire by Heloise West

IfIWereFire_headerbanner

In 18th century Siena, Count Salvesto Masello has returned home to find the family villa and his father’s estate steeped deeply in debt. In order to save it, he has been selling off valuable family heirlooms, but he is running out of silverware. Somewhere in the villa his deceased father had hidden the art treasures that will pay the debt, but Salvesto can’t find them anywhere.

Amadeo Neruccio has been on the run from the vicious pimp, thief, and pawnbroker Guelfetto, but his toughs finally catch him and bring him to the cellar where Count Masello is selling off his silver. When the count learns what fate Guelfetto has in store for Amadeo, he intervenes and trades the last of his mother’s dowry for the young man’s freedom.

Salvesto had left home over ten years ago to live the life of adventure he craved. He had also hoped to leave his broken heart behind. When he rescues young Amadeo, he does not expect to find love again, or that his adventures had yet to end.

IfIWereFireFS

Excerpt:

Seated in the shade of the loggia attached to the surgeon’s house, Amadeo waited for the conte, barely able to think for the pain in his body. Bone-deep pain, like a bad tooth. He sighed, but his breath hitched like an uneven stitch.

“Nerrucio.”

He jumped at the sound of his former lover’s voice. Glancing around, he espied Barone Malavolti standing in the narrow street beneath a chestnut tree a few arm lengths away; his expression was a mask of boredom, though he stood there without his hat, a little breathless and pink-cheeked. Leaning on a silver-tipped cane he did not need, he had dressed today in a beautiful dark gray velvet jacket and the long pale blue waistcoat beneath it embroidered with bright flowers, all held together with small ebony buttons. His creamy white linen shirt and cravat were spotless. All that fine cloth hid a mercurial character and a whippet-lean body that contained a fierce strength. Glossy black hair, brown eyes, and a slightly round, handsome face, the dark circles under his tired eyes spoke of a long night of debauchery. Amadeo turned quickly away, angry and embarrassed all at once.

“Don’t ignore me.”

“No, Barone.” Amadeo stood.

“I wanted to make sure you were—not dead, as someone said, murdered in Guelfetto’s cellar or sent off to Florence to pay your debt.” His clipped tone made Amadeo wince.

“It was never my debt!” He lowered his voice. “I came to you for help, but you did not believe me. He told everyone that I agreed to lose the race for payment. You believed that bandit over me.” Amadeo swallowed back his disappointment. “Me. Your bad habit.” It was terribly rude, but he had to sit in the shade and close his eyes, as the hot, bright sun pierced his skull and made his head pound even harder. To his surprise, Malavolti followed to stand beneath the loggia with him. Encouraged by that, Amadeo whispered, “You said you loved me, but you lied. How is what you think I have done worse than that?”

Malavolti said, “I am not a liar. And only a poet would see that as a crime.”

Amadeo truly wanted to shake the barone until his teeth rattled, but restrained himself. “Guelfetto had sold me to a bathhouse in Florence to whore for those stinking pig-dogs until I die. Conte Masello has rescued me. I do not need you anymore.”

Malavolti flinched. “What has Conte Masello to do with all this, Neruccio?”

“He was there….” Amadeo stopped and considered his words. Malavolti need not know the conte was there selling his mother’s silver plates. “He took pity on me when I said I would give myself to the Arno and paid my debt to Guelfetto.”

“Paid your price, you mean.”

Stubborn, prideful man! To think he wept at the lines I wrote for him and him alone. He believed me then, at least. Perhaps the new one in his bed has left him, and left him bitter.

“We have a bond agreement,” Amadeo said wearily. “I’m to be the new groom for the stables. At least I’ll be with the horses.”

“Ah, my poor poet,” Malavolti mocked. “Poor Cecco. ‘But to show wisdom’s what I never could. So where I itch, I scratch now.’”

A pet name for the famed Sienese poet of a long dead age, Cecco Angiolieri, and the old lines fell upon Amadeo’s ears like a slap. Malavolti had encouraged and supported his own poetic lines at one time, but no more. “If you do not believe me still, be gone, Gianni. No one torments me as much as I do myself, so you waste your time.” His grieving heart forced him to continue the lines: “‘I’m down, and cannot rise in any way; For not a creature of my nearest kin/Would hold out a hand that I could reach….’”

Except for one man.

The door to the house creaked open, and Malavolti turned away, continuing on his path up the street as if they had never spoken.

About the author:

Heloise West, when not hunched over the keyboard plotting love and mahem, dreams about moving to a villa in Tuscany. She loves history, mysteries, and romance of all flavors. She travels and gardens with her partner of 10 years, and their home overflows with books, cats, art, and red wine.

Social Media:

Dreamspinner: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/AuthorArcade/heloise-west

Blog: https://velvetpanic2.wordpress.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/heloise.west.1

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/heloisewest/

Email: heloisewest@hotmail.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/velvetpanic

Tumblr: http://heloisewest.tumblr.com/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8188216.Heloise_West

Order If I were Fire:

Dreamspinner Press

Amazon US

Kobo

Barnes and Noble

Google Play

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