Saturday, April 14, 2018

Saturday's Series Spotlight: Heartaches - Bad Boy Vibes by HM Irwing


Series: Heartaches - Bad Boy Vibes #1-3
Author: HM Irwing
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance
Release Dates: #1 - September 21, 2017
#2 - December 11, 2017
#3 - February 14, 2018
๐Ÿ’ฅContent Warning: Triggers about rape๐Ÿ’ฅ

Heartaches #1
Summary:
Anna Walters-Simmons has just lost her stepfather. For her and her mother, it’s no big loss; the abusive bastard had been nothing but trouble for the past eleven years. Unfortunately, his death has brought another trouble into their lives: Brian, Anna’s stepbrother who, for reasons still unclear, murdered his own father. When one of the few shimmers of goodness in Anna’s life—her boyfriend, Matt—rapes her, how will she survive the darkness these problems stir within her?

"Stop looking at me like that."- Rafe Brown

"Like what?"- Anna Simmons

"Like you're starving," Rafe smirked down at her.











Heartaches #2
Summary:
Oh, the tangled webs we weave—especially in fiction! Rafe and Anna are back, and this time, their hearts are not the only ones at risk of aching. With the return of Eric Dayton and the Prestons, Rafe, Anna, Pat, and their friends are on-edge and on-guard. And now that their flawless reputations have been tarnished, who knows what Rafe’s and Anna’s abusers/rapists will do for revenge. Will evil—and money and power—win out over good? Will the ghosts of their pasts drive a wedge between Rafe and Anna? And how will the relationships and drama of their loved ones affect them?

“You… destroy… me,” he couldn’t help saying between deep, wolfish kisses. “You… absolutely shatter me.” - Rafe Brown













Heartaches #3
Summary:
The day of Aunt Bella and Peter Preston’s wedding is approaching, and Rafe and Anna know that they have to do everything possible in order to stop it. They have a plan which, thanks to a sly maid named Suzi, they might be able to pull off. That is, if their own emotional struggles with each other and the Prestons don’t get in the way first. What follows are 160 pages of conspiracy, tension, double-crossing, and, of course, sex and romance. Will good finally triumph over evil? Will the Prestons and Eric Dayton finally get what they deserve, and will Rafe and Anna finally get the peace that they long for? Most importantly, who will make it out alive?

“Stay away from her. Anna is mine.” Rafe glared down at him, his eyes going opaque, meaning business. - Rafe Brown

“She was mine first, brother,” Matt grinned back roguishly. - Matt Preston


What is your book about?
Heartaches Bad Boy Vibes is an insight to what is faced by many the world over. Told in a three-part series, Heartaches Bad Boy Vibes is a love story that emerges from the ruins of two shattered souls. Anna Simmons and Rafe Brown have both experienced the very worst humanity has to offer and that too at the hands of those they once trusted.

It’s a story that I hope addresses a lot of hard-hitting issues that has been plaguing society since the start of time. Sexual abuse and the victimization of those who have suffered the abuse is a matter that has been overlooked by too many for too long. I first penned this story and put it up on Wattpad in 2013.

Five years on and I am still advocating its need to be told- to be read- and most importantly – to be understood- in all its explicit glory. It is my hope that the experience will if nothing more, enlighten the readers to the plight of so many.

Heartaches Bad Boy Vibes the trilogy has been controversial from the very start. It invoked strong reactions from those who read it- but the focus was not where it should have been. Strangely enough, the focus was sadly on use of harsh language, on the explicit sex scenes, on Anna Simmon’s reactions to the pleasure and dependency she felt from the rape drug.

Drug addiction is because it incites pleasure- I don’t get why Anna has been victimised because of it- and by the readers

But despite the above, I believe Heartaches Bad Boy Vibes has been the success it was meant to be. The resistance to change is always adversary and I looked at each negative feedback as it was meant to be- a seed of change has been planted. Its growth will be watered by the penmanship of another who will pick up the cause and fly with it.

Why did you write it?
I believe it was a newspaper article of rape that triggered my action into penning down this story. Naturally there have been plenty of such articles, plenty of reported stories of rape, plenty of stories of parents worried for their sons and daughters being exposed to such abuse but as always, it would be that one article that would push my need to pen down a fictitious story- that I would naively hope – to end all such real stories.

The below is an extract of the statistics that I have sought out from a website that only served to give urgency to my written words.

Australia has one of the highest rates of reported sexual assault in the world, but support workers say the number of offenders facing court and receiving prison sentences is too low.

Australia has one of the highest rates of reported sexual assault in the world, at almost 92 people per 100,000 of the population, according to the United Nations. Another survey has quoted the Australian rate at more than double the global average.

According to the UN, Australia ranks below on South Africa in rates of reported rapes.

Countries such as Swaziland, Canada, Jamaica and Sweden follow with rates of reported rape per 100,000 of the population coming in at 76.1, 68.2, 50.8 and 40.6 respectively.

Neighbouring New Zealand reported a rate of 32.2 per 100,000 of the population, ahead of England and Wales at 25.6.

What did you hope to achieve with the telling of this story?
I am a dreamer at heart. I believe every reality must first be dreamt.

I dream of a world where sexual abuse and exploitation no longer exists.

And I dream of a world where sex is accepted as a natural bodily need.

That the very act, written or performed- explicit or not, is not actions or words that should be swept under the covers but boldly embraced.

There is nothing wrong with any kind sex if its consensual between two willing adults.



Author Bio:
HM Irwing dabbles in inking out pages of creativity all with a purpose to tool her works into an armament that would broaden the minds and increase acceptance.


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Heartaches #1
๐Ÿ’ธCurrently 99cents๐Ÿ’ธ

Heartaches #2

Heartaches #3

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Release Blitz & Blogger Review: The Contingency Plan by Addison Albright

Title: The Contingency Plan
Author: Addison Albright
Genre: M/M Romance, Fantasy
Release Date: April 14, 2018
Publisher: JMS Books
Summary:
A sheltered prince. A sudden death. An unexpected choice. How will Prince Marcelo react to discovering he’s The Contingency Plan?

For eighteen years, there has been peace between Sheburat and the kingdom of Zioneven. The untimely death of a princess throws the marriage arrangement -- the final phase to complete the terms of the treaty -- into disarray, and the contingency plan is put into motion. Now the Crown Prince of Zioneven gets to make his own choice from among the princess’s younger siblings.

As a rare royal son in the matriarchal sovereignty of Sheburat, Prince Marcelo grew up knowing he would never marry. Never. Royal sons did not marry. Period. Except, Prince Efren isn’t from Sheburat, and he has other plans.


With the sudden death of a princess, the arranged marriage set to finalize the peace treaty between Sheburat and the kingdom of Zioneven is thrown into question.  However, a backup plan is in place and when Prince Marcelo finds he is to play a part will he and Prince Efren find happiness in this contingency plan?

The Contingency Plan may be short in pages but it's words are full of heart.  I fell in love with Prince Marcelo and his sheltered life immediately and wanted him to find his HEA. Could this fantasy/fairytale been better had it been a full-length novel?  Perhaps, but I have a feeling it would've been darker with more pages to fill and sometimes these short stories/novellas are perfect just as they are.  I may enjoy a good angsty tale but I don't need to have it to be entertained, sometimes we find happiness simply by having our eyes opened to new things and I think that is exactly what the author has done with Princes Marcelo and Efren in Contingency.  Just lovely from beginning to end and who knows maybe we'll see what the future holds for these Princes down the road๐Ÿ˜‰hint hint๐Ÿ˜‰ but if this is the only glimpse of Marcelo and Efren's life together we get, I was not disappointed. A wonderful gem to fill your afternoon.

I've featured Addison Albright's work on my blog before but I have never read any of her stories until now.  Whether this fairy tale is her usual sub-genre doesn't matter because it was definitely a winner that has left me looking forward to checking out her backlist in the months to come.

RATING: 


With everyone now in attendance, Queen Giselle stepped forward. “Your Royal Highness, Ladies and Lords, and people of Zioneven, please accept our warm welcome to Sheburat, and I hope you’ll accept our sincere apology for the chaos in which you find us today.”

Prince Efren inclined his head. “Of course, Your Majesty. On behalf of Zioneven, I offer our heartfelt condolences on the loss of your beloved daughter.”

“Thank you,” Queen Giselle replied. “Sadly, our loss yesterday affects more than simply causing us private pain.”

“Indeed.” Prince Efren kept his reply short, perhaps diplomatically leaving it to Queen Giselle to either further the conversation toward whether or not he was ready to choose his alternate, or to wait for a time when her grief would be less immediate.

His mother would put diplomacy first, Marcelo didn’t doubt that. The conversation may or may not happen today, but it would occur during this visit. Diplomacy always came ahead of personal concerns.

“Although disappointment caused by the cancellation of the wedding we’d expected tomorrow is unavoidable,” Queen Giselle said. “I hope you’ll find a small comfort in knowing that you may now make your own choice of your future bride from among my younger daughters rather than the arrangement made on your behalf at the tender age of five.”

Again, Prince Efren inclined his head. “Sibling.”

“I’m sorry?”

“Sibling. The terms of the treaty specify I may choose an alternate from among Princess Marcela’s younger siblings. It didn’t restrict the choice to daughters.”

Marcelo stiffened. What in the world could Prince Efren mean by that? Men didn’t marry men. At least, he’d never heard of such a thing occurring in Sheburat. Marcelo wasn’t alone in his bewilderment. Everyone on his side of the room stilled. None of the faces opposite them exhibited confusion. Was that an acceptable option in Zioneven’s culture?

It was only by mere minutes, but Marcelo did qualify as a younger sibling to Marcela.

For the first time in Marcelo’s recollection, his mother faltered. “Do…surely…but…”

Marcelo turned his head toward her, his wide eyes silently imploring her to voice an objection. Kemble may have recently grown complacent thinking herself in the clear, but she’d at least spent her life knowing she was the likely backup plan.

As a royal son in this matriarchal society, Marcelo had grown up knowing he would never marry. Never. Royal sons did not marry. Period.

He’d been perfectly happy with that knowledge because he’d never experienced the attraction that men outside the royal family felt toward women. In fact, he’d enjoyed knowing he would not have to merge his life with a woman’s with the expectation of having to bed her.

His gaze flicked back and forth between Queen Giselle and Prince Efren before settling on the prince. Prince Efren had kept his eyes locked with the queen’s, but as if sensing Marcelo’s scrutiny, his head turned to reflect Marcelo’s regard.

Marcelo’s heart thudded so vigorously in his chest, surely everyone in the room must hear it. His respiration quickened. That single word uttered by Prince Efren had shattered Marcelo’s understanding of everything he knew about the world and had expected in his life.

Queen Giselle remained frozen for a few more moments, her brows drawn together as she processed the unexpected direction of this discussion. She cast a brief, apologetic glance toward Marcelo, then lifted her shoulders in a barely visible shrug. “The treaty does indeed use that word. Prince Efren, the choice is yours.”

Marcelo’s stomach dropped as her words echoed through the silent hall even though he’d known in his heart that she’d put Sheburat before her son’s individual concerns. So, he felt no personal betrayal. It was who is mother had to be.

Prince Efren continued to stare at Marcelo as he firmly stated, “I choose His Royal Highness, Prince Marcelo. The wedding will proceed tomorrow as planned.”

Marcelo swayed as the blood drained from his face. How could this be? How did such a marriage work? Would he be expected to—

“Marcelo?” Suky’s whispered tone voiced her concern. “Are you unwell?”

She repeated the words, but from farther away. Or did her voice only seem distant? He wobbled as the people around him faded, and then, thankfully, this nightmare all went away.

Author Bio:
Addison Albright lives in the middle of the USA with two peculiar cats. Her stories are gay (sometimes erotic) romance, and tend to be sweet man-love in contemporary settings. Her education includes a BS in Education with a major in mathematics and a minor in chemistry. Addison loves spending time with her family, reading, popcorn, boating, French fries, “open window weather,” cats, math, and anything chocolate. She loves to read pretty much anything and everything, anytime and anywhere.


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