Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Review: Spirit Sanguine by Lou Harper

Spirit Sanguine by Lou Harper
Samhain Publishing
Novel: 298pgs
4.5 Pants Off

Blurb:
Is that a wooden stake in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?

After five years in eastern Europe using his unique, inborn skills to slay bloodsuckers, Gabe is back in his hometown Chicago and feeling adrift. Until he’s kidnapped by a young, sexy vampire who seems more interested in getting into his pants than biting into his neck.

Harvey Feng is one-half Chinese, one-hundred-percent vampire. He warns Gabe to stay out of the Windy City, but somehow he isn’t surprised when the young slayer winds up on his doorstep. And why shouldn’t Gabe be curious? A vegetarian vampire isn’t something one sees every day.

Against their better judgment, slayer and vampire succumb to temptation. But their affair attracts unexpected attention.

When Chicago’s Vampire Boss makes Gabe an offer he can’t refuse, the unlikely lovers are thrust into peril and mystery in the dark heart of the Windy City. Together they hunt for kidnappers, a killer preying on young humans, and vicious vampire junkies.

However, dealing with murderous humans and vampires alike is easy compared to figuring out if there’s more to their relationship than hot, kinky sex.


Review:
I've read some Lou Harper before but this is by far my fave book by the author. Spirit Sanguine follows a similar style to that of her last release Dead in L.A by introducing us to two characters that closely have to work with each other while building a loving relationship. But this one was such an eclectic mix of themes that it really brought the "wow" factor, and Harvey and Gabe are now two of my favest characters.

Gabe is back in America after spending 5 years in Eastern Europe hunting vampires, yep he's been staking the crap out of bloodsuckers. His uncle who trained him and open his eyes to a brand new scary world after the death of his parents, and when the man died he decided a change was in order. He doesn't feel like vampire hunting is his niche anymore, and maybe being back in Chicago will bring some things into perspective. Only thing now is that, he knows there are vampires, and Chicago has them too. A night at a club, and suddenly Gabe's vampire senses are prickling, and he hones in on a very attractive blood sucker. Obviously Gabe is losing his mind if he's finding vampires attractive, but 5 years of killing doesn't just leave you and Gabe begins to stalk his prey. Too bad said prey is on to his game, and Gabe gets a dart in the backside and off to unconscious land he goes.

Gabe should be around dead right now but somehow he's still alive and having a faceoff with the attractive vampire. Seems there's a code of conduct on the undead streets of Chicago and attractive vampire won't be killing him. But as soon as Gabe is free he's planning on staking the son of a bitch and going full stealth mode to do it. Well...Gabe seems to be off his game and he's once again taking on the vamp who's named Harvey Feng (a cosmic cruel joke) and the fight has gone out of Gabe. Instead of wanting to kill Harvey, he actually would rather bed him, and as they say the rest becomes history. Gabe's got to meet the big boss, land himself a job, and get caught up in the lives of vampires (who knew?).

This book seriously has bit of everything for everyone. There's snark, sexy vampire man love, and action (with entertaining bits of sexy role-play). Gabe becomes a somewhat investigator for the vampire world, and with Harvey by his side its never a dull moment. The style of the book is something that isn't done very often in M/M with Megan Derr doing it before with her Dance with the Devil series, and Lou Harper also with her Dead in L.A. Each segment is a case, and in the end it all comes together beautifully. It’s like a set of mini stories, each adding something to the plot, and then *boom* it reaches it peaks.

I love the relationship between Harvey and Gabe, not in any way perfect but very believable in how they come together. They create this balance for each other and somehow knew each other better than they knew themselves. It all gets reflected in the storytelling, and there is so much character chemistry it’s insane in the membrane. I am like a serious fan of Gabe and Harvey, and with Harvey being half Chinese there is just no contest. Vampires, Asian character, and a Vampire hunter (with addict vampires) this book had me at 'hello'.

Should You Read It? I don't even know why you haven't gone out and bought it yet O_O. There is a lot of fun packed in these pages and Lou Harper did it big in this one, I am now huge fan. I can't wait to read more!

4.5 Pants Off

Guest Post & Giveaway: France, Australia, and Other Love Stories by Ariel Tachna (Outlast the Night Blog Tour)

~I am very excited to have Ariel Tachna stopping by as apart of her blog tour for Outlast the Night, book 3 in the Lang Downs series. Be sure to comment and follow along on the tour.~



A couple of weeks ago, France legalized “marriage for all,” becoming the latest in a line of European countries to legalize gay marriage, and when that happened, Dreamspinner did a sale of all books in French and all books set in France to celebrate. It turns out an awful lot of those books set in France were mine, which led people to ask why. And yet here I am with a series of books set in Australia, so the second immediate question was how I ended up in Australia after writing so many books set in France.

First, I should say that my love affair with France—for it is nothing less than a passionate, even torrid romance that will never end—is as strong as ever. France just doesn’t have the setting I needed for Lang Downs.

My love affair with France and all things French started in seventh grade when I started taking French in school. I lived there. I fell in love there. I still feel more at home there than I do in my own house most days. I set books there. Lots and lots of books, and that probably won’t change because it is the home of my heart. When I was interviewed for the Dijon daily newspaper, the leading line was “Je suis américaine de naissance mais mon cœur est dijonnais” (I’m American by birth but my heart is Dijonnais) and it’s the truth. I love that city and will always dream of moving back there, no matter how unlikely that seems at the moment.

I could go on and on about all the reasons why I fit in so well in France and so poorly in Texas, but that’s not really the point of the post. I’m really supposed to be telling you how I got from there to a series set in NSW (New South Wales for the non-Aussies among us).

It started several years ago when two actors whose careers I follow were misattributed Australian nationality in two separate news articles within a month or so of each other. Nicki and I joked about it, and she replied by saying she liked the idea of them running off to Australia together to raise sheep. Now anyone who’s ever talked to me about my writing knows that my muses are Nicki’s slaves, so as soon as she said that, my brain started coming up with scenarios to put men together on a sheep station in Australia.

I know nothing about Australia beyond the Crocodile Dundee movies and A Man from Snowy River, and somehow I don’t think either of those is an accurate portrayal of life in modern-day Australia, so I did what I always do when I don’t know the answer to something. I try to figure out who I know who might know the answers. Google is great, but nothing replaces that authentic touch. As it turns out, Isabelle Rowan lives in Australia and she and I have been friends for a number of years, so she turned into my on-site resource for anything I couldn’t guess or look up online. Kinds of beer, what Australians would call the mess hall on the station, brand names of boots, the kind of coat the jackaroos are likely to wear… you name it, she answered it or found someone who could. And then she read it from beginning to end and fixed the slang so my Aussie men wouldn’t sound like Americans. Drongo, and Galah, and rissoles… I learned all kinds of new words! (I’m a linguist. I love variations with language!)

By the time we were done with Inherit the Sky, I was in love. Maybe not quite as in love as I am with France, but that’s the affair of a lifetime. Australia is my piece on the side. *wink* And three books later, I’m just as in love as I was at the end of Inherit the Sky. I’m back on Lang Downs right now, working on the fourth book, Conquer the Flames, and it feels like coming home. Maybe not quite like walking into Dijon, but close. I have a feeling I’d have been one of Michael Lang’s strays if Lang Downs were real and I had a chance to go there. Kami says it best: “Michael Lang started taking in strays from the moment he founded this station eighty years ago. Macklin, your brother, me… we’re the latest in a long line of people who came here to lick their wounds and realized this was the Promised Land.”

Outlast the Night Excerpt

They were nearing the second gate, the one that would take them to the main house at Taylor Peak or let them bypass it for the road to Lang Downs, when another set of headlights caught Jeremy’s eye. “Looks like we have company,” he said to Sam.

Next to him, Sam tensed, almost as if he was expecting a blow. “Is there a problem?”

“There shouldn’t be,” Jeremy said, resisting the urge to pat Sam’s knee comfortingly. He didn’t know if the gesture would be appreciated, so he kept his hands on the steering wheel and waited for the other vehicle to approach. “The only way to Boorowa from Lang Downs is through Taylor Peak. As long as the jackaroos don’t cause problems, we’ve never had an issue with them crossing our land, and Mr. Lang was always very clear with his men. If you cause problems on Taylor Peak, don’t bother coming back. I haven’t heard Macklin say anything like that, but I can’t imagine he’d be any more tolerant of it.”

“He doesn’t seem one to bear fools lightly,” Sam agreed. “I guess we just wait and see what they want?”

“Yes,” Jeremy replied. “It could be nothing at all, but since we’ve seen them, it’s polite to wait and acknowledge them. They’ll be here in a minute, and then we can head on home.”

A few moments later, the other vehicle came into sight, and Jeremy’s stomach fell when he recognized Devlin’s car. He rolled down the window on the ute, the cold breeze eddying through the warmth of the cab. He could get out and preserve the warmth, but he really wanted the door between him and his brother. He didn’t think they would come to blows again, but he could do without another shiner.

“Jeremy,” Devlin said as he approached the ute. “I heard you were in town today.”

“I made the supply run for Lang Downs,” Jeremy replied, “not that it’s any of your business.”

“I heard that too,” Devlin said. “You’re really going to choose those two no-good pillow biters over your own family?”

“If the choice is living with your bigotry or living with Caine and Macklin, I’ll be far happier on Lang Downs,” Jeremy replied evenly. “I told you that the day I left. I’m done playing by your rules.”

“You’re no better than they are,” Devlin spat. He peered deeper into the ute at Sam. “Bloody hell, if that’s the best they can do for jackaroos these days, you’ve jumped onto a sinking ship.”

Jeremy grabbed Devlin’s collar in his fist and dragged him close. “Listen, you stupid fucker, you can insult me all day long, but you leave Sam out of it. He’s the accountant Caine and Macklin hired to take care of the books because Lang Downs is doing so well they need someone full time, so get it through your bloody thick skull that Lang Downs isn’t going under, you’re not going to be able to buy it cheap, and you’re not going to be able to run Caine off. They’re worth ten of you.”

“Bloody poofters, the whole lot,” Devlin said. “Next thing you know, you’ll be joining them too. Don’t come running to me when it goes south on you.”

“I haven’t come running to you for anything since I was five and you laughed at me for falling off my first pony,” Jeremy said.

“I should have known there was something wrong with you then,” Devlin sneered.

“There’s not a thing wrong with me,” Jeremy replied, “except how long it took me to tell you to go to hell.”

Not waiting for an answer, he rolled up the window and let up on the brake. He didn’t gun the engine. He didn’t want to hurt Devlin, after all, just get the hell away from him.

“I’m sorry you had to hear that,” Jeremy said to Sam after Devlin had stepped back and was nothing more than a shadow in his rearview mirror. “Devlin has a blind spot so wide you could drive a truck through it where Caine and Macklin are concerned. It was bad enough when he thought I agreed with him. Now that he realizes I don’t, he’s added me to his blacklist.”

“It’s fine,” Sam said in a meek voice. “It’s not your fault.”

They reached the gate, and Sam jumped out to open it before Jeremy could say anything else. He drove through and waited for Sam to join him again.

“You’re not freaking out because you found out I’m gay, are you?” Jeremy asked. “You didn’t seem bothered by Caine and Macklin, so I thought—”

“What? No, of course not,” Sam said. “That would be really stupid, not to mention hypocritical. I mean, I didn’t know until your brother said something, but it’s none of my business, and you had no reason to tell me—”

“Sam, breathe,” Jeremy interrupted. “You’re going to hyperventilate if you keep going like that.”

Obediently Sam leaned forward and put his head between his knees, breathing in slow, measured cadence. Jeremy might have chuckled at the sight if he hadn’t been so busy resisting the urge to plant a fist in the face of whoever had done such a number on Sam. Then he realized what Sam had said: hypocritical.

Wasn’t that interesting? Had his ex-wife found out and used it against him? Had he known when he married her or was this a recent realization? Did anyone else know?

Sam’s breathing steadied after a moment, and he sat back up.

“Feel better?” Jeremy asked.

Sam nodded, although in the fading light of night and the impending storm, Jeremy thought he still looked a bit like a fish out of water.

“Your ex did a number on you, didn’t she?”

“What?” Sam said.

“Your ex,” Jeremy repeated. “What did she say to you to make you so tentative about everything?”

“Nothing,” Sam said immediately. “She just wanted out. She deserves someone who really loves her.”

“What about someone who really loves you?” Jeremy asked. “Don’t you deserve that too?”

“An out-of-work office manager with no social skills, a thickening waistline, and receding hair?” Sam countered. “Sure. They’re lining up at the door.”

“That’s exactly what I’m talking about,” Jeremy said. “That kind of statement right there. Who made you believe that?”

“The mirror,” Sam replied.

Jeremy let that part go. If Sam wasn’t ready to talk to him, Jeremy couldn’t force his confidence. He could, however, address the content of what Sam said. “Then you need a new mirror. Because, first of all, last time I checked, you weren’t out of work anymore. Unless you think Caine hired you out of pity?”

Sam took just long enough to answer that Jeremy knew he really did believe that, even if he shook his head.

Jeremy nearly snorted in disbelief. “Let me tell you something about sheep stations, at least ones the size of Taylor Peak and Lang Downs. Most years, the difference between running in the black and in the red is one or two lambs. All the worth of the station is on paper, tied up in the land and the buildings and the equipment and the livestock. Money comes in twice a year, when the lambs are sold in autumn and after the shearing in the spring, when we sell the wool. The rest of the year, it’s a question of pinching pennies and hoping nothing breaks or needs to be replaced because until the next season, there’s no guarantee of how much money will come in to keep things running. Pity doesn’t have any place in running a station. If Caine hired you, it’s because he believes doing so is in the best interest of the station. I don’t know a lot about his background, but I know he got a business degree in the US. A Yank degree might not be worth a lot here, but it proves he knows his way around money, which tells me you impressed him, and that, in turn, impresses me.”

“That doesn’t change the rest of it,” Sam said. “You can hardly argue about my hairline.”

Jeremy rolled his eyes. “There’s a lot more to loving someone than how thick their hair is, you know. By the time my mother died, my father had a beer belly big enough to merit its own time zone and no hair whatsoever, but she still loved him as much as the day they met. And your hairline is fine. I just thought you had a high forehead, not that you were losing your hair.”

“I appreciate what you’re doing,” Sam said. “Really. But you don’t need to. I know what I am and what I’m not. I’ve come to terms with it. I don’t need anyone’s pity.”

“If that’s what this was, that might sway me,” Jeremy said, “but I didn’t spend the day talking to you out of pity. I didn’t offer to teach you about the station out of pity. I enjoyed your company today, and that’s far more important than how cut you are or whether you’re losing a little hair. You don’t have to believe me, but I need to say it at least this once: I think you’re an interesting, attractive man, and I’d like to get to know you better, but I realize you’re in the middle of a divorce and that you have issues to work out around that, so I’m not going to push. I am, however, going to be your friend.”




Ariel Tachna lives outside of Houston with her husband, her daughter and son, and their cat. Before moving there, she traveled all over the world, having fallen in love with France, where she met her husband, and India, where she hopes to retire some day. She’s bilingual with snippets of four other languages to her credit and is as in love with languages as she is with writing.

Web site: http://www.arieltachna.com

Blog: http://arieltachna.livejournal.com

Twitter: @arieltachna

 Facebook: http://tiny.cc/29npd

To purchase my books, you can always go to Dreamspinner’s web site, http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com or you can go to Amazon, Barnes & Noble, All Romance eBooks, or Rainbow eBooks, http://www.rainbowebooks.com/store/. I’m sure there are probably other eBook outlets as well, but I don’t go searching for them. Also, if you want to buy the book in print, any bookstore that allows special orders can order the book for you with the title and my name.


Giveaway

  • Be sure to comment with email to win a book by Ariel Tachna

Monday, May 27, 2013

And the Winner Is...



*KARL


* Winner of Spirit Sanguine by Lou Harper. Winner chosen using random.org and thanks to all who entered.*

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Review: Play Me, I'm Yours by Madison Parker

Play Me, I'm Yours by Madison Parker
Harmony Ink Press
Novel: 238pgs
3.5 Pants Off

Blurb:
Fairy Tate. Twinklefingers. Lucy Liu. Will the taunting ever end? Lucas Tate suffers ridicule because of his appearance and sensitive nature. When he’s not teased, he’s ignored, and he doesn’t know which is worse. He feels unloved by everyone, but the one comfort in life is his music. What he wants more than anything is to find a friend.

Much to his dismay, both his mom and a schoolmate are determined to find him a boyfriend, despite the fact Lucas hasn’t come out to them. His mom chooses a football player who redefines the term “heartthrob,” while Trish pushes him toward the only openly gay boy at Providence High. But Lucas is harboring a crush on another boy, one who writes such romantic poetry to his girlfriend that hearing it melts Lucas into a puddle of goo. All three prospects seem so far out of his league. Lucas is sure he doesn’t stand a chance with any of them—until sharing his gift for music brings him the courage to let people into his heart.


Review:
This was my very first time reading Madison Parker, and if I am correct I do believe this is her first published work? I have to say a very good effort, and I will be willing to read any other released titles. Play Me, I'm Yours follows the typical YA novel style, and with that I felt like I've read it before, written in a different sort of style but the trope is so familiar that eventually it took away from the story and made it fall into the "ok" category.

Lucas Tate lives for his music, he's an amazing piano player and its also where he finds his comfort. He come alive when he plays the piano, the fact that he's shy and social outcast seems to have no meaning when his fingers hits those keys. The only problem is that he often embarrasses himself and those close to him. He has nothing in common with his father, a brother who would rather him be less of himself, and a pushy mom who thinks that all he needs is to work on fitting in (which also means being less of himself). The final blow comes when a popular boy asks him to hang out and then humiliates him in school the following week. Lucas thought maybe he had the opportunity to make a friend and it all just went up in flames. He fits in nowhere and its starting to bring him down.

Hope comes in the form of Alex and Tricia, Lucas's only allies or should I say friends. Alex is the hot guy friend that Lucas sorta has a crush on, and he tries to build his confidence but at often times crash and burns. Tricia is seasoned in having a gay best friend so she's all "hey baby dolls, let’s get you out there and to a party and you should also date my bestie Donovan". So with this glue intact, Lucas gets out there and starts having experiences, not all positive experiences but he's out there. Lucas also spends a little of his time waiting on his brother who is on the swim team, and mostly he watches Zach one of the school star swimmers, and of course there is just no way Zach is gay (or so he believes).

While I did enjoy Lucas (he cries often but that doesn't bother me), I wished he had a stronger voice. There are moments he goes and tries to speak up, but in the end he's the one that ends up crying. It’s the other characters that irked me more than anything else.

The Mom- meant to be supportive and all tender caring but she was causing more harm than good. While she was saying to go out and be more confident I kept reading it as this "Hey you Lucas stop being yourself no one likes you when you are yourself". She wanted him to constantly change.

Donovan- I really disliked him! He had the villain status but his everything was just too over the top. Yet, I feel like he has some story to tell, he's a bit too jaded for it not to have come from somewhere. I wanted to kick him!

The Dad- A character I really enjoyed but his relationship with Lucas just didn't go to the places I wanted to. The author barely scratched the surface on something I think could have been truly special.

I was really loving this one when I started reading it, I even got teary eye a few times but as the story progressed that something special kept disappearing. And with some over the top scenes, and talk of BDSM *raises eyebrow* it all just turned out to be an ok read. I don't know about you guys, but teens and BDSM sound like a spanking waiting to go wrong. As I said, a good effort by Madison Parker but in the end it lost a lot of its spark. I am glad Lucas found love but it was just so after school special...some people are gonna love this one or be like me and just find it to be a little better than "ok".

3.5 Pants Off

Guest Post: Thank God that Dragon was Dead – Megan Derr & "Dracones"

So, once upon a time in college, I started poking quietly at writing for a year or so, mostly fanfic and original stuff that never saw the light of day, but I never expected to pursue writing seriously. Then a friend talked me into using an elective slot to take a Creative Writing 101 class with her, because if she was going to be abused by her peers, damn it, someone was going to suffer with her. :3

Kyo & Kin from Treasure
The first round of story/review was supposed to be anon, but the professor messed up photocopying the batch of stories that had mine in it, so amusingly, the whole class was spent saying 'the author' when we all knew who was being discussed. It was a fun class, and I learned a lot (not the least of which was how to take criticism, no matter how harsh).

My story for that round was about a knight and ex-priest hunting for a dragon (Samantha is probably the only person who remembers this story). They go through this whole broken, falling-down temple all the way to a cave in the back... and discover the dragon had been killed by falling rock decades ago. My professor's first comment when the review started was basically, "I just have to say, I was extremely relieved the dragon was dead. I was dreading a fight scene. Those are tricky, and I was just not looking forward to it, and then the dragon was dead, and that was great."

I laughed so hard that if it had not been clear already who wrote the story, it would have been obvious then. I straight up said I was not up to writing that kind of scene, and I thought it would more interesting anyway. There was a lot of other helpful stuff said during that session that sticks with me to this day (your dialogue needs work for this and this reason. You describe how things look, and even feel, but how does it all smell?).

That poor dead dragon was the first one I ever wrote, and that story was the first time I realized "I could really do this" because the story was bad (it was one of my first; of course it was bad), but nobody in that class hated it, and I was like the only fantasy writer in the group. That little dragon, dead though he was, taught me that my ideas are not, in fact, all that awful. That poor dragon I killed before the story even started helped lead me to writing.

Since then, I've written several stories about dragons – involved fantasies of lost dragons, silly fairytales, modern dragons raised for pit fighting, and several others. I like writing anthro type characters, dragons especially, because it's a challenge and a lot of fun to figure out how a non-human creature would think and act, where their priorities are, and how that clashes with the humans around them.


Najlah, from "Lukos Heat", my contribution to Storm Moon Press' Dracones, is definitely one of my favorites so far, just because he's so different from those who surround him. He's built for brutal fighting in a harsh, dry, extremely hot environment, but is currently living in a damp, cold one and not particularly enjoying it. He is constantly frustrated by the 'soft' people around him and the lack of any real purpose, since a quiet palace life has very little in need of killing. A character like Naj is fun to write because his thought processes, his priorities, etc are so drastically different from most—seeing how he reacts, and how others react to him, made this story a hell of a lot of fun to write. I hope it's just as fun to read ;)

What was a blizzard? Najlah growled in irritation. Barkus only frowned at him with incomprehension, so he went to go find Fayth. Thankfully, he was already awake, as were the others, packing up their bedrolls and destroying what little remained of the fire. Najlah growled at him, clawing impatiently at the snow.

Smiling faintly, Fayth said, "A blizzard is a sandstorm of snow. Here, let me increase the strength of your warming stone." Reaching out as Najlah moved close, he wrapped his hands around the smooth, heavy stone on a thick chain around Najlah's throat.

Heat spread through Najlah, and he rumbled in gratitude. Without the warming stones, dragons could not leave their homeland. Nothing else was capable of sustaining their body temperature at the level they needed. It chafed to have to rely on outside help to survive, but the sands were the sands, and they could not change, only shift. Better to shift with the sands, than to resist them and be buried.

He moved away, to the edge of camp, leaving the others to do as they needed. For himself, he carried nothing. All he needed, he had or could hunt.

"Let's move," Barkus ordered, and everyone in camp shifted except for the bird shifters—which meant Fayth, unfortunately. Grounded by the strong winds and heavily falling snow, they would have to travel and fight the hard way. Najlah would have been happier if Fayth had possessed a stronger shift, but it little mattered in the end because Najlah would see to his safety.

They traveled on, following the wolves, Najlah tasting the air frequently, though it remained infuriatingly difficult to taste more than snow and whatever was immediately before him. Around them, the snow grew increasingly worse, while the wolves grew angry. Najlah growled in surprise when he realized he could taste fear on them as well, underscoring and aggravating the anger. What was alarming them?


"Lukos Heat" can be found with six other gay dragon short stories in Storm Moon Press' Dracones. Now Available!

Megan Derr is a long time resident of m/m fiction, and keeps herself busy reading, writing, and publishing it. She is often accused of fluff and nonsense. When she's not involved in writing, she likes to cook, harass her cats, or watch movies (especially all things James Bond). She loves to hear from readers, and can be found all around the internet, including her website, Tumblr, LiveJournal, and on Twitter @amasour.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Review: Just Call Me Kris by Allen Mack

Just Call Me Kris by Allen Mack
JMS Books
Short Story: 20pgs
3.25 Pants Off

Blurb:
It’s Christmas Eve, but the season doesn’t seem very merry and bright for Mike and Karl. Interns in a major New York City hospital, both men are away from their hometown of New Orleans and miss it terribly. Their tiny apartment has barely enough room for a bed, let alone a Christmas tree.

Lonely, they console each other with a long, leisurely make-out session that looks like it will lead to something more between them. But before they get too involved, the doorbell rings, interrupting them. It’s a late-night delivery, a present from their friends, but when they open the door, who should appear?

Not a jolly old elf, but a southern Santa by the name of Kris Kringle stands before them, hot and hung and ready to satisfy their every sexual desire.


Short Review:
Its Christmas Eve and Mike and Karl are missing their hometown. As interns at a hospital they got stuck with holiday hours, so they'll be spending the holidays in New York, in their tiny apartment. With the tiny place having no room for more than a bed the make do with a tiny Christmas tree to bring holiday to cheer to their gloomy space. Though they would rather spend their holidays in New Orleans, they still have each other and there’s nothing like a little sexy time to put them at ease. But before things get heated up, there is a knock on the door which could only mean gifts from friends. When they do open up the door, it’s nothing but a sexy Santa come baring gifts.

At first glance Santa looks like old Kris Kringle but when he literally starts baring all good ole Kris is sexy man here looking for a sexy time. Mike and Karl have always wanted to try a ménage, but never found the right person but its seems to be their lucky night cus things are heating up fast, and sexy ole Kris is most definitely giving them a good night.

This is sexy short with a little paranormal twist to it (at least to me). Because it seems Kris was not a gift from friends and his appearance seemed to be different to both men, they don't question it but bask in the glow of the amazing sex. This is a short quick read that can be enjoyed if you're in the mood for something simple. The writing flows well, and bound to bring holiday cheer no matter which month/season you read it in. Very cute!!

Review: Scavengers September by K.A Merikan

Scavengers: September by K.A Merikan
Self-Published
Novella: 117pgs
3 Pants Off

Blurb:
--- Keeping his wife happy was hard enough without a gay lover and the zombie Plague. ---

In July of 1893, James Hurst, a perfect English gentleman, had retrieved a treasure that would secure the financial future of his family, got scarred by a zombie and lost his virginity to Ira Russell, the mercenary he hired. After a rocky start, their mutual fascination makes James happier than ever.

Despite initial worries, Ira has no trouble blending in with the aristocratic household. Even James’ young son comes to adore the new teacher of survival tactics and his maritime stories. His wife on the other hand takes a different sort of interest in Ira. Her infatuation with him is the living proof of James’ failure as a husband, but is it too late to pick up the pieces? With a political opponent watching his every move and the threat of a terrorist attack on London, James is walking a tightrope. Can he keep his family safe without giving up on his newfound happiness (and Ira’s skills in tying him up)?
*
"Scavengers: September" is the third and last book in a three part series and is set in the universe of “Gentlemen’s Tales of Love, Lust and the Undead”.


Review:
July 1893 finds James Hurst baring the zombie apocalypse to retrieve values from his family home. He had to take on the help of a Mercenary, one called Ira Russel a man who brought out feelings that another man should ever have for another. James has survived a zombie bite, hordes of zombie, and yet he can’t seem to win the fight of staying away from Ira. With a wife and young son at home, important job responsibilities, yet James finds himself unable to stay away. Succumbing to the sins of the flesh isn't something James is proud of, but he loves and adores Ira and there is just no way is he giving him up regardless of the living threat that hangs over their heads.

In Scavengers September Ira is now a part of the Hurst household, and James couldn’t be happier. He has his lover under the same roof, though being discreet for their rendezvous is at the outmost importance so he doesn't cause his dear wife distress. In all truth, James is cheating but his acceptance is clouded is that; his wife is like a friend he shares a child with. Yes, he married his wife out of obligation but he's brought the man he's sleeping with and introduced him as a friend. To add more spice to the spicy, James's wife is starting to feel a little something/something for Ira, because he clearly is very irresistible. With hordes of zombie barricaded outside the city, James and Ira's only threat is a devious little woman who happens to know the nature of their relationship and is dead set on a little blackmail which could possibly bring all James have worked for to an end.

Alright, so I really liked the first books in this series and found the characters to be delightful but now I can't help feeling like the conclusion is a letdown. First, I can't help like feeling that James has no backbone; I thought he would be bad ass (I feel no character development from him). Second, he brings his lover into his family home. That’s just a little too much, regardless of whether your wife is like a friend or not. Third, the development of the overall plot just kind of hit a wall, and provided filler with James/Ira sex scenes (hot scenes but filler nonetheless). Then the ending was somewhat ridiculous and it all felt very contrived, and in the end I was very disappointed. I think this one was missing the magic that the other stories managed to offer up.

Should You Read It? Well, I really like the first story, and the second was very enjoyable so those defi are worth a looking into. As for this one...I can't recommend it.

3 Pants Off
Review: Book #1 Scavengers: July

Monday, May 20, 2013

Guest Post & Giveaway: Here's How (Not) Smart I Am by Megan Derr (Backwoods Tour)


So as anyone who has to put up with me long enough knows, I am largely the loud, obnoxious face of LT3. My informal titles are "Marketing Crap That Sasha & Samantha Hate More So I Do It" and "Operations", both of which have loose interpretations. Not to say the business is run anywhere near as vague as that sounds, it's not. A successful business relies like hell on being organized, and we are that, but this doesn't mean we have strict roles and never shall our paths collide.

To get on with this already rambling post, lately I have started organizing blog tours for authors, especially the new ones who have not yet built up much of a fanbase and such. I generally try to schedule them a couple of months ahead of time so they have plenty of time to write, or plenty of time to cancel if they wind up not able. What this means is that I fall into a rhythm. I pull the stories/authors getting published, I add them to my blog spreadsheet, then I email the sites still tolerating my harassment (such as Darien :3) and schedule them. Unfortunately I get so into the rhythm of doing this that I don't comprehend all that I am reading.

Which means that I totally managed not to notice that one of the books up for May scheduling was in fact my own (even though I'd been babbling about it incessantly just a few days before) and I just accidentally scheduled a tour for myself. I had not wanted to do one; I'm busy enough doing other stuff that I did not really have time to write posts and track them and such (it's fun to do, I just don't have time).

So, yes. I accidentally gave myself a blog tour. It's sad how long it took me to notice what I'd done. You'd think one would notice her own freaking name on the spreadsheet, but I definitely did not until I'd already scheduled three days. I could have canceled them, but it seemed more fun to go ahead with it. I think all my brains go into the fiction.

The book responsible for these shenanigans:


Skylar is used to the way people think of him as frightening, mean, and dangerous. Snakes are not the most popular shifters around and the fact he grew up wild doesn't help. He knows the way he's chosen to live alone in the woods only makes things worse, but he didn't think it meant people thought him capable of killing a couple of wolf puppies.

Determined to find the real monster who left them to die, Skylar calls up the only wolf he knows, a man he always wished would see him as more than a snake …

Pre-order at LT3





GIVEAWAY

If you would like a chance at winning a copy of the book responsible for this accidental tour, leave a comment (with email). Bonus points if you tell me a favorite 'did I just really?' moment :3

Winner will be drawn next Monday, May 27th, using random.org

I hope everyone is surviving this Monday, and that your week goes well ^__^

Much love to Darien for having me, she has the best No Pants Zone on the internet


Megan is a long time resident of m/m fiction, and keeps herself busy reading, writing, and publishing it. She is often accused of fluff and nonsense. When she's not involved in writing, she likes to cook, harass her cats, or watch movies (especially all things James Bond). She loves to hear from readers, and can be found all around the internet.


maderr.com
maderr.tumblr.com
maderr.livejournal.com
lessthanthreepress.com
meganaderr@gmail.com
@amasour 


Friday, May 17, 2013

Guest Post: A Quick Guide to Erotic Horror Dating by K.A. Merikan


Erotic horror stories mix the scare factor of adrenaline-inducing events and the sensual, arousing aspect of erotica. The plot is often not about two people connecting, like in a romance story, can go different ways, even ending with the main character dying a horrible death. Which doesn't mean a horror story has to end badly for the character, but definitely takes them on a rollercoaster ride of a journey.

In our story for the Queer Fear anthology, "Matthew Powers Lives!", we acknowledge the bridge between the two not only through the plot, but also through the main character's profession. Matt is an adventurous porn actor, ready to do his first big horror porn shoot in a deserted asylum. With a set up like that, he's ready for some high-adrenaline experiences, even if they are acted out, but having to deal with actual fear when things get out of hand is a completely different story.

In contrast to a romance story, which, by definition, should have at least a 'happy for now' kind of ending, thrillers or horrors really keep you on the edge of the seat. Reading becomes a lot less about 'Will they? Won't they?', more about 'Will he survive?'. As a reader, I love being surprised and dragged through all sorts of twists and turns, biting my nails for the outcome. And as a writer, I enjoy surprising my readers, taking them on a journey that isn't obvious, or predictable.

Having your heart leap at ghosts, blood, and gore might actually set the mood for an erotic encounter later on. Just like people are proven to have higher probability of sexual attraction rushing through them in times of great adrenaline rushes. The feelings melt into one in times of war, catastrophes, or even when you go on a rollercoaster ride with your date. Living through stressful situations together creates a bond much stronger and more intimate than going on a date to Starbucks.

So, where is this all going you might wonder? The mix of fear and sexuality, what does that have to do with you? Well, since misattribution of arousal is an actual thing, why not use it to your advantage when you're dating, or even when you want to spice up your relationship? You could treat a 1974 experiment as dating instruction and use a wobbly bridge as a beau hunting ground, or just use its premise to your advantage. Here are a few adrenaline-inducing dating tips, sure to get your date hot under the collar.


  • Why not invite your date to a place as delightful as Zombie Manor? That is some serious hand holding material right there.
  • Host a dinner by the window in a skyscraper. The height is bound to make your date attentive. A see-through floor is preferable, just don't wear a skirt or dress. Or, if you're dating a woman, make sure to suggest she wear a skirt/dress (naughty, I know).
  • Sabotage the electricity in your house for dramatic effect on your date. That calls for hand holding in the dark, accidental stumbling onto the sofa, searching for candles that might end up as some spontaneous wax play (only not actually spontaneous; know where the candles are). Works just as well as sabotaging the elevator, but less dangerous.
  • Or, when you're really out of ideas, a good old fashioned horror movie night can do the trick. But at least spice it up with some creep-tastic dinner choices like a scorpion on a stick, insect sushi, or ant chocolate. Even if your date doesn't end up eating them, it will surely keep up their heart rate.
  • Whatever you do, make sure you can save the day. And don't be too reckless on the first date, people's fright thresholds may vary.


  • Thanks to Pants Off for having me here today, and for those who needed a little spice advice to mix fear with passion, you're welcome!

    Kat Merikan

    K.A. Merikan is a joint project of Kat and Agnes Merikan who jokingly claim to share one mind. They finish each other's sentences and simultaneously come up with the same ideas. Kat and Agnes enjoy writing various kinds of stories, from light-hearted romance to thrillers. They love creating characters that are not easy to classify as good or evil, and firmly believe that even some villains deserve their happy endings. They can be found at http://kamerikan.com/ as well as on Facebook and Twitter @KA_Merikan. Their latest short story, "Matthew Powers Lives!" can be found in Storm Moon Press' Queer Fear anthology.

    Thursday, May 16, 2013

    Interview & Giveaway with Lou Harper

    ~I am so happy to have Lou Harper stopping by the blog today! She's talking about her newest releases and even brought you guys a giveaway. Lets give out a warm welcome.~


    Hi Lou and Welcome to Pants Off.

    Tell us a bit about yourself and how long you've been writing?
    My first stories were published in 2011, so not very long. I'd always been an avid reader, though. I even had a serious book addiction for a time—I was one of those kids who read under the blanket with a flashlight till three in the morning.

    Was gay fiction something you always wanted to write? Or did you develop it as an interest over time? 
    I fell into gay romance by accident. I had no idea it even existed, and it was a very happy discovery, like finding something I didn't know I was missing.


    You have a few releases that are upcoming. Can you talk a bit about them, and you future plans in writing?
    Dead Man and the Restless Spirits is an offshoot of Spirit Sanguine, picking up the adventures of one of the supporting characters, Denton Mills, aka Dead Man. Denton meets an interesting new neighbor with a portly feline. The book is coming out June 25.

    In November I'm publishing a book with Samhain—it takes place in the shadows of the Hollywood Hills, and centers on old secrets, sin, and a distinctive tattoo. The title is Secrets and Ink.

    Between the two I hope to put out a sequel to Dead in L.A.


    Would you say that you prefer writing books with a Supernatural element than say...just regular ole Contemporary? And is the Supernatural something you believe in?
    I like mixing contemporary with paranormal. Spirit Sanguine was the first paranormal story I wrote, unless you count and old short. I originally planned only for a novelette, but the characters took over and during writing I realized that I absolutely love the opportunities for mischief that the genre provides. 

    I don't particularly believe in the supernatural, but I like to believe in the possibility of it.  Keeping that door open to a crack makes life more interesting. I experienced ESP twice in my life and that's the sum total of my history with the supernatural.


    I've been loving all you fantastic covers you've been producing. Has this always been a hobby, or just a recent talent discovered?
    I was doing graphic design long before I started writing. In college I studied photography, but got busy with Photoshop when it was in its infancy. Oops, did I just date myself?


    Out of all the characters you've written, who is most likely to survive the zombie apocalypse?
    Mm…tough question. I want them all to survive. Gabe is a seasoned vampire slayer, so those slow moving brain-munchers wouldn't be much of a challenge to him. Plus, his boyfriend, Harvey wouldn't let anyone take a bite out of him. Harvey, on the other hand, is a vampire. Do zombies even attack vamps? Is a vampire brain more or less appetizing than regular brain? These are serious questions.


    What book/books are you currently reading, and is it causing a pants losing? 
    I recently beta-read books for Josephine Myles and Anne Tenino, and I can tell you, they'll set your pants on fire.


    Pants is it better to write with them on or off?
    The best part is the process of taking them off—slowly, teasingly, and maybe not even all the way. I'm also a huge fan of kilts. 


    Can you share a little something/something from Spirit Sanguine? (Small excerpt or sexy snippet)
    Hm, okay. How about some phone sex? J


    Gabe was still fuming when he arrived back to the apartment. “I can’t believe you dated that putz,” he grumbled. He threw his jacket across a chair and slid next to Harvey on the sofa.

    Harvey gave him a saucer-eyed, not-you-too look. The phone stuck to his ear like a barnacle. “No, Dill, I’m absolutely sure that’s not what he meant,” he said.

    Unbuttoning his shirt, Gabe bristled with his unspoken grievances. Frank had rubbed him the wrong way many times over, and he couldn’t even gripe about it because Harvey’s ears were already occupied—one of them, anyway. Gabe started to realize he didn’t like sharing either. So he decided to lay claim to Harvey’s free ear, but his lips weren’t talking—not with words. At the same time, he slipped a hand under Harvey’s shirt, tracing his fingers to a nipple that immediately perked up under his touch. Harvey stifled a moan.

    He kept on talking into the phone, though. “You’re whipping yourself into a f-fit again for no reason. Ugh.”

    Gabe toyed with the nipple a bit more roughly. He also attempted to squeeze his other hand into the back of Harvey’s jeans, but it was a tight fit. Harvey arched off the sofa and undid his fly one-handed.

    “Yess,” Harvey said as Gabe pushed his shirt up and employed his lips—and a bit of teeth—at Harvey’s up till then ignored other nipple. “I mean, yes, it’s perfectly reasonable for the guys to go out without you, every once in a while, and you don’t even like the opera.”

    Pushing the coffee table aside, Gabe lowered himself between Harvey’s legs. Harvey lifted his hips so Gabe could tug his jeans down. A low moan escaped his throat as Gabe swallowed him down. He scrambled to cover it up with a cough.
    “Didn’t Stan take you for a weekend getaway recently—only the two of you? Did Ray act like a jealous dimwit afterwards? Yes, it is exactly the same thing. Ooof!”

    Gabe yanked Harvey forward so his ass was practically hanging off the sofa.

    “Nothing, Dill. I stubbed my toe.” Pulling his knees up, he angled his ass for better access. “Go on.”

    It wasn’t long before Harvey had to cover the receiver with his hand to block out his heavy breathing. Too bad it didn’t leave a hand free for his cock. Gabe snickered catching a glimpse at Harvey’s frustrated expression. He gave the neglected appendage a long, wet lick before returning to stretching Harvey’s hole with his tongue and fingers.

    “Mmmaybe you should ass…sume he meant what he s-said. What? No! Gabe has definitely not been sexing me up while we were talking. I wouldn’t…” Harvey’s eyes opened wide as Gabe undid his own belt and flies and pushed his jeans down. His cock sprang forward between his shirttails, ready for action. Gabe dug the tiny bottle of lube out of his pocket and drizzled a small amount on his cockhead.

    “Oh fuck. Sorry, Dill, I have to go. I’ll talk to you later.” The phone tumbled off into the cushions.


    Thank you Lou for being here today!! If fans want to keep in touch, how can they get in contact?
    I'm on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/lou.harper.14), Goodreads, and blogger (http://louharper.blogspot.com).  My website (http://louharper.com) has my email address right on the front page.


    Giveaway
    Leave a comment for your chance to win a copy of Spirit Sanguine
    • Must be 18yrs or older
    • leave email along with comment
    • winner has 48hrs to reply to my email or another winner will be chosen
    • Contest runs until May 21st 11:59pm EST

    Tuesday, May 14, 2013

    Guest Post & Giveaway: Here Come de Judge (and He's Wearing Victoria's Secret) by Jude Dunn


    Headline: New Study Suggests Cross-dressing Rampant among U.S. Senators?

    Perhaps you're familiar with the use of the question mark by journalists? It's a telltale sign of laziness, and almost always indicates lack of research and intent to grab eyeballs without vetting sources or verifying facts. So rest assured, dear reader, that the above headline is as fake as the botched boob job on my poor, transgender-wanna-be pet terrier, Scotty McDongle. (He wants me to call him Doreen, but I refuse until the hormone therapy is complete.)

    Politicians do cross-dress, of course. And one who does is front and center in my new e-book from Less Than Three Press, titled The Birdman of Saginaw.

    Lucas Gourdeau is a circuit court judge in Saginaw, Michigan. Early thirties, fit, and handsome. He’s also gay, and he loves to wear women's panties. He collects birds of every kind and has an extensive outdoor aviary. When Dave Rogers, a twenty-six-year-old football jock working at a pet store, delivers two sun conures to Gourdeau at his Victorian home, sparks fly. Gourdeau is taken with Dave, who’s full of angst over losing his chance to play pro football to a knee injury. Dave's mind is blown by the attention of a sexy, worldly-wise and confident man who’s levels beyond his station in life.

    But there are problems.

    Here’s an excerpt in which Dave tries to make sense of his first encounter with Gourdeau:

    His trip yesterday felt as though it was weeks in the past. Had he known his life would change the moment he rolled to a stop in front of Lucas's Victorian mansion, he might have spent less time fretting about it. In retrospect, walking into the elegant home wasn't unlike falling down Lewis Carroll's famous rabbit hole, except that, instead of a young girl named Alice at the bottom, an incredibly handsome man with cool blue eyes waited to lead him into Wonderland. But it wasn't Wonderland. Inside was a world of stately beauty, levels above his upbringing, everything tidy, everything settled.
    Except for the goose on the back porch. And the backyard—what did Lucas call it? The Meadow. More like a nature preserve. And the aviaries—three giant walk-in cages with more birds than I could count, all of them different. 
    Dave blushed every time he reached this point. In his mind he watched a sexy stud who looked too young to be a judge squat in front of his new birds. The back of his tee shirt lifted, his jeans rode down, and the top of his Victoria's Secret panties showed.
    After several attempts to make sense of things, Dave chose an analogy inspired by the only elective he actually enjoyed before dropping out of college. 
    Like I'm in a Norman Rockwell and someone holds it over the floor and shakes it so hard I fall into a Salvador Dali below it. Which is the best explanation I can think of for my brain picking the exact moment Lucas showed me his panties to give epilepsy a try to see if it might be fun.

    The Birdman of Saginaw is my first published work with Less Than Three Press, and I’m delighted to join their roster of authors. I write in several genres, but my first love is gay romance and erotica. I’m working on a variety of stories and a novel, and I blog at judedunn.com. Don’t drop by unless you enjoy being pleasured by words (wink-wink).

    And check out the wide variety of other m/m stories at Less Than Three Press to delight your senses and body parts.

    Oh yes, about those senators in the fake headline? More than a few have been rumored to sport less-than-masculine garments under their power suits. The women senators? I suppose they’re grateful that cross-dressing isn’t mainstream just yet. It’s hard enough doing the country’s business without having to advise old-establishment males on lingerie choices.


    GIVEAWAY

    If you would like a chance at winning a copy of The birdman of Saginaw, leave a comment with your email and you'll be entered for a chance.

    Winner will be drawn next Monday, May 21th, using random.org

    Jude Dunn is an author whose work spans a number of genres, including gay romance and erotica, science fiction, thrillers and adventure stories, and mainstream fiction. He is an editor for a specialty publishing house by day, but his passion is telling tales that entertain and inspire his readers. Dunn lives in Chicago and enjoys a number of pastimes, from gourmet cooking and sampling a variety of wines to jazz and performing his own music as a local pianist. His cat, who has yet to answer to any of the myriad names Dunn has tried, keeps him company in between his always anticipated and passionate visits to Toronto to spend time with his husband of nine years. Dunn’s work is sometimes subtle, sometimes fiery, but is always an entertaining and satisfying read.

    Friday, May 10, 2013

    Geek Week Winners!!!


    WOW! What a week it was, and so happy so many of you popped by to read the reviews and check out the guest posts (much love). And now its the time to announce the wonderful winners of a fantastic giveaway. Once again, a huge thanks to the authors that donated a copy (or two) of their books.






    Urb- Too Stupid To Live
    Erica Pike- Too Stupid To Live
    Chrissy- Nobody's Hero
    Julianna- Closet Capers
    Sam- Pawn Takes Rook
    Issa- After The First Taste of Love
    Finsup- How To Repair A Mechanical Heart
    H.B- Venetian Masks
    Kassandra- Moon Shadows
    Melora- Social Skills
    Karl- Astronomical
    Valarie- Trust In Me
    Suze- Party Boy's Guide To Dating A Geek
    Connie- Sauntering Vaguely Downward
    Kerry- Tech Support

    *Winners chosen using random.org* Thanks to everyone who stopped by and commented, and hooray for Geeks!

    Review: Cambion Epi 2: Black Magic Woman by Cari Z.

    Dark Around the Edges (Cambion #2): Black Magic Woman by Cari Z.
    Storm Moon Press
    Short Story: 43pgs
    4 Pants Off

    Blurb:
    Tracking Porter Grey means making a deal with Lynlis Syfer, a witch with a gift for finding the unfindable. It takes something special to catch the eye of a woman like that, and so Devon and Rio split up in order to blacken the eyes of Lynlis' two main rivals. But that just gets them in the door. To secure her help requires a sacrifice that may be higher than the boys can afford.




    Review:
    This serial is getting more awesome by the episode, and I am 100% invested in the characters. Rio and Devon have found a certain groove together, away from all the sexual chemistry they sorta just fit. After the one man rescue team Rio pulled in extracting Devon from takedown gone wrong the men (I use that word loosely) still have yet to capture their target the elusive Porter Grey, demon summoner extraordinaire. They're gonna need to bring in some big help, which might or might not put them in all kinds of danger. So with the bright lights of Las Vegas and of course the seediness, Devon and Rio has to put all their skills to the test. They will move in the circles of a black magic woman, while trying to keep their explosive chemistry under-wraps (well Devon's explosive sexuality).

    I just love the adventure these guys are on while searching for Porter Grey, and every new character introduced give me feels like a kid in a candy store. Some are clouded in mystery (ahem Rio), some are so interested you hope they end up getting more page time, and others seem just a tad bit bat shit crazy (Lynlis). But even though the focus seems to be all case work all the time, we get to know Rio and Devon a little more and look at their ever evolving relationship. Makes me wonder with Devon being a Cambion (half incubus demon) can anything long-lasting become of their relationship (oh man I hope their long lasting ever loving and monogamous to each other).

    So yeh, I am all types of hooked on this and can't wait to dive in the follow up story. I am looking forward to more interesting characters, explosive sex, and finding out exactly what Rio is. Man, is something other and curious minds are dying to know *me*. Love Cari Z's writing and look forward to anything that mind of hers pushes out. Can I just say "On to the next one!”.

    4 Pants Off
    Review: Epi #1 Heaven's On Fire

    Thursday, May 9, 2013

    Guest Post: Be My Alien (Character Interview) by Julie Lynn Hayes & M.A Church



    Thanks so much for having us here today! Oh wait, who are we, I can hear some of you ask? Let me back up a mo and start again. I’m Julie Lynn Hayes, she’s M.A. Church, heretofore to be known as Michelle. Just call me Julie. We’re here today to talk about our first joint project, Be My Alien, which is ready for pre-order. The release date is May 8th by Dreamspinner.

    Let’s start at the beginning. I totally blame Michelle for hooking me on aliens.

    Michelle: *snort* I corrupted her, or so she says.

    Julie: *laughs* That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it. It wasn’t until I read your most excellent book, Nighttime Wishes, that I first encountered your fixation on beings from other worlds, and… wait, hold on a second. What are you two doing here?

    Reed: Don’t blame me, I was just following Taz. He said we needed to come here, and I guess he’s right. Look, you’re talking about us. That’s a bit cheeky, don’t you think?

    Julie: What? Cheeky? Hey, Reed, I was going to say nice things, how does that make us cheeky? Michelle, a little help here?

    Michelle: Oh no, don’t drag me into this. Besides, I think you’re doing just fine on your own, Julie.

    Julie: Gee, thanks. *sneaks a peek at these two lovely men* Wow, what gorgeous guys we’ve created, I have to admit.

    Taz: Reed, I appreciate these two humans and their efforts to talk about us, but I feel that we can handle this ourselves, don’t you?

    Reed: Indeed I do. So why don’t you two ladies find something else to do? Maybe go to a strip club or something?

    Julie: *look at Michelle, and she shrugs *

    Michelle: Well, if they screw this up, it’s on them. I say we go look at pretty men. You’re driving, though.

    Julie: *walks out door mumbling under her breath* Don’t I always?

    Michelle: *pokes Julie in the back* But you like driving. Am I going to have to listen to this all the way to Atlanta next year???

    Purses are grabbed and a door slams shuts.

    Reed: *whispers* Good Lord, are they gone?

    Taz: *looks around the corner* Yes, thank the stars. I swear, those two… So… *Taz rubs his hands together, a gleam in his eye* Looks like we got free rein now. You ready to start?”

    Reed: Yes, more than ready. They’ve gone about things the wrong way. Did you even hear mention of the title?

    Taz: No, not a word.

    Reed: *shakes his head* Women!

    Taz: *cocks his head and regards Reed* My mother is a woman, Reed.

    Reed: *snorts* I know, I met her, remember? So’s mine, by the way, and thanks for asking…

    Taz: But I didn’t ask?

    Reed: *sighs* It’s just an expression. *mumbles under his breath* Damn, need to get that book. Bad. Hey, babe, where do you think we should start?

    Taz: How about like this? *he climbs onto Reed’s lap and lays his head on Reed’s shoulder, purring*

    Reed: Oh damn, seriously? *takes a deep breath* I thought we’re here to talk? You know, about us?

    Taz: *purrs louder* Go ahead and talk. I can hear you. *begins to rock in Reed’s lap*

    Reed: Oh jeez louise, that’s distracting… *clears throat* Um, okay… we met… we met… oh yeah, it was almost Valentine’s Day. I was working late ‘cause I didn’t have anything better to do. You know how it is when you’re single and it’s been a while… that day means less than nothing.

    Taz: It didn’t mean anything to me either.

    Reed: Well, to be fair, you never heard of it ‘til you got here.

    Taz: Oh yeah, I guess that’s true. *squirms a bit on Reed’s lap* I’m just lucky I was in the right place at the right time.

    Reed: I think I’m the lucky one, babe. That’s what they call karma.

    Taz: Karma? What has this to do with driving?

    Reed: *groans* Later, I’ll explain later. So anyway, I had to meet a customer at the Empire State Building after work, and that’s where I met Taz. He knocked me off my feet, literally.

    Taz: What can I say, you caught my attention? My night hadn’t been going very well. I had just been dumped, then I saw you. I really didn’t mean to knock you down, you know.

    Reed: Oh, I wasn’t complaining. I ended up on the floor with an arm full of sexy male. *blush* Well, at the time I thought I had an arm full of sexy male. Little did I know just what I was holding.

    Taz: *giggle* You should’ve seen the look on your face the first time my stripes showed up! I mean, you freaked out, but still, for a second there… I don’t have the words!

    Reed: *shakes head* It was probably the same kind of shocked look I had when that tail of yours put in an appearance.

    Taz: *rubs cheek against Reed’s jaw* That reminds me, when are you going to let me—

    Reed: Whoa now. Let’s not go there, babe. You give that away, Julie and Michelle will both want to skin you. It’ll be a race to see which one of them gets you.

    Taz: Silly women. Neither one of them gets me. I’m all yours… *licks his way up Reed’s neck*

    Reed: All mine, you’re right. Um, um…. Oh yeah, the title. Be My Alien. Pretty cute, don’t you think?
    Taz: Mmhmmm, you’re very cute.

    Reed: Not me, the title *blushes*

    Taz: Oh, that’s not bad. Those two earth women seem to be able to put words together rather nicely, don’t they?

    Reed: Better than me at times. Oh babe, you gotta quit that, or I might…

    Taz: I’m wearing those special—

    Reed: Oh lord, from the shop? *groans* Oh yes, my shop. I have my own business, I should mention that. A Touch of Class. Here in New York. I mean there… I mean… Taz, please be careful, you’re right over my—

    Taz: I know, Reed… I know… *silences him with a kiss* Oh yes. We told them how we met. Did we tell them about ourselves though?

    Reed: What do you mean?

    Taz: Well, I’m from the planet Trygos, the most important planet in the Trygos galaxy, and only one of two planets capable of sustaining life. The other planet is Haatmiess. When Trygosheans put someone down, they say they’re like a Haatmiess, which is considered a major insult. My full name is Fabrintazo, Taz for short. I’m about 5'11" in your earth measuresments, and I have a wiry, muscular build. My hair is a mixture of red and orange and brown and it’s long and luxurious, and reaches below my shoulders.

    Reed: That’s very true. He often twists it into a braid and lets it flow loose over his back. He’s very acrobatic and he loves heights. Which scared the hell out of me at one point in the book. Taz has cat green eyes and purrs when he's pleased. *smiles* I make him purr often.

    Taz: Yes, you do. Reed’s full name is Reed Hatcher and he’s about my height and build. He has very light brown hair that tends to bleach out in the warmer months and he has the most beautiful hazel eyes. Oh! And he has this cute little dimple in his cheek too. The one on his face, not the other one. Though that’s cute, too.

    Reed: *blushes* Babe, too much information.

    Taz: *grins* And he’s a business owner, too. A very important man in his world. *nods head* And in his business, he has a back room that sells very special things. I like the back room.

    Reed: I actually have a degree in elementary education, but I never taught. My parents moved to Florida and I ended up here in New York.

    Taz: Thank the stars you did! *frowns* Should we tell them about Vorlod?

    Reed: What’s to tell? The bastard’s no longer here on Earth and can’t bother you anymore.

    Taz: Well, he was the reason I was here on Earth to begin with.

    Reed: We should save that story, though, don’t you think? Can’t spill all the beans, now can we?

    Taz: *glances around the floor* I don’t think we spilled anything.

    Reed: *rolls his eyes* You’re right, we didn’t. What was I thinking?

    Taz: *eyes him suspiciously* Are you having fun with me?

    Reed: Not yet, babe, but I intend to, I promise you.

    Taz: *grins even broader, stripes appearing on his neck* Then let’s go now and, how did you put it, avoid the rush hour?

    Reed: *tries not to laugh* Close enough. *fastens their lips together, he rises, Taz clinging to him, and they make their way from the room. *

    * * * * Hope y’all enjoyed meeting the characters from Be My Alien!

    Author bio: M.A. Church

    M.A. Church lives in the southern United States and spent many years in the elementary education sector. She is married to her high school sweetheart and they have two children. Her hobbies are gardening, walking, attending flea markets, watching professional football, racing, and spending time with her family on the lake.

    But her most beloved hobby is reading. From an early age, she can remember hunting for books at the library. Later nonhuman and science fiction genres captured her attention and drew her into the worlds the authors had created. But always at the back of her mind was the thought that one day, when the kids were older and she had more time, she would write a book.

    By sheer chance she stumbled across a gay male romance story on the web and was hooked. A new world opened up and she fell in love. Thus the journey started. When not writing or researching, she enjoys reading the latest erotic and mainstream romance novels.

    My links: 

    Blog http://machurch00.blogspot.com

    Twitter @nomoretears00

    Facebook: M.A. Church http://www.facebook.com/pages/MA-Chur... 

    Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5141393.M_A_Church

    Publishers:

     Dreamspinner: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/index.php?cPath=55_650 

    Romance First Publishing: www.rfppublishing.com 

    Changeling Press: http://www.changelingpress.com/author.php?uid=177 

    Storm Moon: http://www.stormmoonpress.com/authors/MA-Church.aspx 

    eXtasy Books http://www.extasybooks.com/ (coming soon)

    Author Bio: Julie Lynn Hayes

    Julie Lynn Hayes was reading at the age of two and writing by the age of nine and always wanted to be a writer when she grew up. Two marriages, five children, and more than forty years later, that is still her dream. She blames her younger daughters for introducing her to yaoi and the world of M/M love, a world which has captured her imagination and her heart and fueled her writing in ways she'd never dreamed of before. She especially loves stories of two men finding true love and happiness in one another's arms and is a great believer in the happily ever after. She lives in St. Louis with her daughter Sarah and two cats, loves books and movies, and hopes to be a world traveler some day. She enjoys crafts, such as crocheting and cross stitch, knitting and needlepoint and loves to cook. While working a temporary day job, she continues to write her books and stories and reviews, which she posts in various places on the internet. Her family thinks she is a bit off, but she doesn't mind. Marching to the beat of one's own drummer is a good thing, after all. Her other published works can be found at Dreamspinner Press, MuseitUp Publishing and No Boundaries Press, and coming soon with both Extasy Books and Torquere Press. She has also begun to self-publish and is an editor at MuseitUp.

    My links: 

    Blog http://julielynnhayes.blogspot.com

    Twitter @Shelley_runyon

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/julie.l.hayes.7?ref=tn_tnmn

    My Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3442231.Julie_Lynn_Hayes

    Publishers: 
    Museit Up Publishing: http://museituppublishing.com/bookstore2/index.php 

    Dreamspinner Press: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/index.php?cPath=55_222 

    eXtasy Books http://www.extasybooks.com/ (coming soon)

    Torquere Press http://torquerepress.com/ (coming soon)

    Wednesday, May 8, 2013

    Review: Stealing the Dragon by Mell Eight

    Reviewed by Fehu
    Stealing the Dragon (The Dragon's Hoard #3) by Mell Eight
    Less Than 3 Press
    Novella
    4.25 Pants Off

    Blurb:
    Stealing from a dragon's hoard is never a bright idea, but stealing from a baby dragon's hoard can lead to tears, sniffles, and smoke in the middle of a busy marketplace.

    Jerney, a witch who does work for a well-known thieves' guild, knows exactly who's to blame for the brazen theft. With no other choice in the matter, he quickly becomes entangled in trying to help the baby dragon. What he doesn't expect is that his own heart might get stolen in the process.


    Review:
    Stealing the Dragon is the third instalment in this series and so far it's my favorite, also the first I'm rating over 3 stars. It's not really a stand-alone, since characters from previous books play an important role and of course the world building happened over all three stories, so I would recommend to read all of them, as to avoid confusion about the races and how who ended up where with what partner. ^_^

    Tori is a cute baby dragon, but because of his eccentric mother, who gave birth to him in her human form, he cannot become a dragon, yet. In the human world Tori is 17 years old and that means an adult, but for a dragon he is just a child, so he doesn't really doesn't understand why the mean uncle Bast wants him to catch the witch, working for the Thieves Guild. Jerney on the other hand, had to grow up very quick after he lost his mother and had to save his siblings, from being sold as bed slaves by their stepfather. The Thieves Guild took them in, because of Jeney's abilities with magic and he promised to work for them in return and his siblings helped the guild when they were old enough, especially his half-sister enjoyed thieving and they were never caught, thanks to the spells Jerney worked for them.

    So when Tori went to look for new treasures for his horde, he was unfortunate enough to run into Jewel, Jerney's sister, who stole his favorite jewel, which was very important to him - his hatching gem. The poor dragon baby is angry and sad at the same time and it's up to Jerney, who feels sorry for the dragon child, to bring him the jewel back, unfortunately for Jerney the theft and the return of the jewel, has far reaching consequences for him and his siblings.

    Tori is adorable and Jerney is really sweet in his interactions with him, he understand that Tori is still quite young and that he has to be taken care of. Tori doesn't really understands what he feels for Jerney or at least not fully, he knows that Jerney is important to him and makes him part of his horde, but he isn't old enough, in dragon years to know how to act on his feelings.

    The story flows smoothly and it has just the right length, though I am looking forward to see a grown up Tori, but I think that might have been too much in this novel. It's a sweet and well written story, without a lot of drama and it was mostly like a fairy tale, which had enough action and humor to keep me entertained, what with kidnappings, bad wizards and a rescue by an angry dragon mother and of course there is the cute dragon baby in a grown up human body, who acts adorable!

    Should You Read It? If you've read the previous stories, then it's a must and this is the best story from the three of them so far. It's great to see the improvements with every novel. Also if you like stories that are fantasy, novel length and plot driven, then this is just the right book for you!