Monday, December 25, 2017

1st Day of Christmas Author Spotlight: VL Locey

Author Bio:
V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, two dogs, two cats, a flock of assorted domestic fowl, and three Jersey steers.

When not writing spicy romances, she enjoys spending her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand. She can also be found online on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and GoodReads.


Blue Line Collection #1
Four must read rereleased M/M erotic hockey romance stories in one reasonably priced collection from best-selling author V.L. Locey!

There’s no sport quite like ice hockey. The speed, the action, the physicality, the blood, and the rabid fans. Add in sizzling hot M/M romance and you’ve got the setting for some amazing romance tales! In the four stories contained in this collection, you’ll experience the ups-and-downs of finding that one true love through the eyes of four different men, ranging in age and experience, from collegiate players to the pros.

Readers should be over 18 due to mature language and gay sexual situations. The set includes:
Crashing the Crease
Long Change
Shutdown Pair
Heir Apparent

Pink Pucks & Power Plays
Viviana Land just can`t seem to say no to her younger sister. Somehow, the curvaceous society page reporter gets lassoed into serving as her niece`s Busy Bee scout leader. One overheated engine later, Viviana and her girls find themselves in the Green Hills Ice Rink. Enter Alain Lessard, the charmingly handsome defenseman for the Philadelphia Wildcats, who is donating his summer to coaching the youth league.

When our intrepid reporter is given the opportunity to write the break-out story of her career, Viviana leaps at the chance. Thinking it would be easy to flirt and tease some juicy tidbits out of Alain, Viviana soon finds herself falling for the sensual, younger, kind-hearted man. Will she put aside her virtual pen for a chance to stay at her new paramour`s side? Or will Viviana finally get away from those mundane bakery opening articles by using the man she may possibly be in love with? 

Venom #4.5  
Secrets. Sometimes keeping a confidence is a good thing. Other times secrets can slowly rot a woman’s soul. Whitney Beaupré has been hiding a big secret for years, one that’s beginning to wear her down both on the ice and off. Pretending to be something you aren’t is exhausting. Wanting to be free but afraid to break out of your prison is terrifying. Seeking love but then hiding from it is crushing to the spirit, yet Whitney feels compelled to keep living the lie. 

Until the night Hannah Kym appears in her life. Whitney’s attraction to Hannah is deep, fierce, and instantaneous. The Temple art major is everything Whitney has dreamed of and more, but those old fears keep clawing at the Venom center, keeping her locked in the closet despite the passion and affection she feels for Hannah. Can love break the shackles holding Whitney’s heart and soul captive?

Improper Fraction
O’Malley Ramsey, math aficionado, grew up next door to Garrison Rook, All-American athlete. While O’Malley dreamed of numbers and kissing Garrison, Garrison’s tastes ran to home runs and hot chicks. During a family celebration the night before both young men were heading off for college, O’Malley joyously discovers that Garrison isn’t quite as straight as the star athlete had been pretending to be. Vows to return to each other quickly followed a few clumsy kisses in the old treehouse in the Rook’s backyard.

O’Malley came home to Garrison. Garrison never returned to O’Malley.

Four years later, the two ex-friends meet up at a summer camp where O’Malley is serving as a counselor. Garrison is desperate to make things right with his childhood friend, but can O’Malley, still nursing the pain and mistrust of Garrison’s betrayal, ever forgive or love Garrison again?

Point Shot Trilogy Box Set
Now, you can have the books that introduced Victor Kalinski to the world in one reasonably priced boxed set! With over 350 Goodreads reviews and ratings combined, the romance of Vic Kalinski and Dan Arou is one that once read, will never be forgotten. In this three-book set, you’ll get to experience all the passion, sarcasm, hockey action, and romance that reviewers have called “Beautifully Written”, “Surprisingly Heartfelt”, and “Hot! Hot! Hot!”

“The writing in this is snappy and awesome, the story moves at a great pace and oh it's HOT AS EVER-LOVING HELL. There's romance that never veers into a too-sappy place, it's FUNNY and full of great lines right and left, and so engaging that I couldn't stop reading it. The ending is satisfying, with our characters not becoming perfect people but becoming better together than they are apart, and that's just about as romantic as it gets.” Avon Gale – Author of the Scoring Chances series

Readers should be over 18 due to mature language and gay sexual situations.

Two Man Advantage #1
Victor Kalinski, all-star forward for the Boston Barracudas, is one of the biggest jerks in professional hockey. Before long his aggressive attitude gets him shipped off to play in the minor leagues.

Furious, he takes to the ice with equal amounts of skill and scathing sarcasm, which doesn’t win him any friends—except for good-natured alternate captain Daniel Arou. He won’t take any of Vic’s crap, and he won’t take no for an answer.

But Vic’s troublemaking is pulling his career one way while Dan’s talent is pushing his in the other. However much they scorch the sheets, they might soon be separated by more than Vic’s fear of being hurt.

Game Misconduct #2
Life has been treating Victor Kalinski well, which is a surprise for the ginger-haired forward with the venomous tongue. His career is somewhat stable, at least for another season. His relationship with Cougars alternate captain Dan Arou is deepening, despite the fact that Daniel has yet to come out of the closet.

It’s typical Kalinski luck when a puck bunny he shared a drunken night with several months ago slaps him with a paternity suit. Despite the sizzling passion and painfully heartfelt connection between them, Dan doesn’t take the news well, and heads back to Canada alone.

If he wants to make things right and win back the man he loves, Vic has no choice but to swallow his pride—and nobody’s prouder than hotheaded, ego-driven Victor Kalinski.

Full Strength #3
What a difference a year makes. Twelve months ago, Victor Kalinski was one of the best and most controversial ice hockey players in the pros. This year he’s playing in the minors, has a paternity case pending, and has just been vindictively outed to the world by one of his own teammates.

But he seems to find life in the tiny town of Cayuga to his liking. A large part of that is Dan Arou, the Cougars’ alternate captain and the man who now holds Victor’s heart. Surely venomous, viper-tongued Victor hasn’t been mellowed by love!

Well, perhaps a little. But that doesn’t mean he doesn’t intend to get sweet revenge on those who’ve hurt the man he loves and the friends he’s somehow made along the way.

O Captain My Captain
To Love a Wildcat #3
Being a single working mother isn`t easy. Just ask Maggie Charles. She`s juggling a job she hates, a rebellious teenage son, and the aftereffects of an abusive first marriage. There isn`t room in her life for a love affair, not that anyone would want to romance someone her age anyway, right? So why, after all these months, when she runs into the strapping Wildcats` captain at a charity event, does the sight of Derrick Andersson leave her so breathless once again? Is that really desire burning in the captain`s green eyes when he looks at her? Is it possible for a couple of been-there-and-done-thats to find love the second time around?

Blue Line Collection #1

Pink Pucks & Power Plays


Improper Fraction

Point Shot Trilogy Box Set

O Captain My Captain

Random Tales of Christmas 2017 Part 12

Texas Christmas(Audio) by RJ Scott & Narrated by Sean Crisden
Texas #5
Six men with lives linked to the Double D... Danger comes to the Double D from Liam's past and threatens everything Jack and Riley hold dear. 

Centering on Jack and Riley, parents, lovers and friends.

Eli and Robbie have their home on Double D land. Their love is rooted in the Texas soil and they weather as many storms as can be thrown at them.

And Liam, a young man with a head full of dreams and sleep full of nightmares, finds that all things are possible when Marcus decides to interrupt his solitary existence.

Re-Readable Part 1 for Texas Series Reviews

Frankly, I'm not sure what I can say that I haven't already said about Texas Christmas(and the whole Texas series) in my many re-reads.  I will say that as much as I enjoy audiobooks, I rarely review them as I find myself zoning out getting distracted by what I'm doing, even when its a book that I absolutely adore so I end up having to listen to a book 2 or 3 times before I get everything.  Now that has nothing to do with the story or the narrator, that's just how I'm wired.

As for the story, well as I said above there's nothing I could add here that would express my love for Jack and Riley Campbell-Hayes and the whole Double D universe more than I've already said in my many re-reads of the series.  So I'll just say this: getting to see the boys, their family and friends at Christmas is just beautiful add in the newest members to the Double D, Liam and Marcus(because of his pursuit of Liam), is both heartbreaking and heartwarming.

As for the narration, well Sean Crisden's voice is perfect for the Double D universe.  This is actually the first Texas book I've listened to but I have heard other books read by Sean and his voice is lovely to listen to and I just want to reiterate that my tendency to zone out is not down to him.  Truth is I can't imagine anyone doing a better job at bringing life to Jack and Riley's journey.


The Last Gift by Chrissy Munder
College student Nick Reed works late shift at a convenience store and dreams of graduation, a job he can be proud of, and finding the man of his dreams.

But the man of his dreams is about to find him.

A change in his lab hours forces Nick to swap shifts with a coworker. But no one prepared Nick for Mr. 5:25—Aaron Hampton—a beefy blond who’s Nick’s perfect guy, but professionally and socially out of Nick's reach. Soon Aaron becomes the highlight of Nick's workday, and when the overly focused lawyer needs Nick's help with holiday gifts, Nick is eager to spend time with Aaron.

They become friends, share book recommendations, and are surprised to find themselves at the same charity run. But is that all? When Aaron learns Nick is heading back to his old shift, will he find the courage to ask for one last, very special gift?

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2017 Advent Calendar collection Stocking Stuffers.

Unexpected Christmas by Nell Iris
Daniel Erickson stormed out of his family celebration after choking on turkey served with a side of bigotry. Utterly miserable, he reluctantly lets himself be charmed by the hulk of a man and gets into the stranger’s car ... hoping he won’t be axed before the night is through.

Axel Wilson -- Ax for short, unfortunately -- is a sweetheart. Really. He may be badass-looking but his heart melts into goo at the mere mention of his four-year-old niece. Surely he isn’t dangerous?

Thrown together by family drama, the two men spend the evening getting to know each other. Axel is nothing like Daniel expected. But it doesn’t matter that he loves poetry, is gentle and patient -- and hot! -- Daniel is absolutely not falling in love at first sight. There’s no such thing.


Unexpected Christmas is absolutely lovely.  I just love the connection between Daniel and Ax, even with Daniel's first impression of Ax being a serial killer😉  We all need a little reminder not to judge by appearances and that is exactly what Daniel learns. I'm not sure what more I can say about this lovely holiday read other than it made me smile and I'm already looking forward to re-visiting Daniel and Ax's Unexpected Christmas journey for many holidays to come.


Ever-Greene: A Souls Christmas by Annabella Michaels
Souls of Christmas #7  
Join the Greene family and the rest of the Souls of Chicago as they come together to celebrate the holidays. There will be an abundance of laughter, fun, heartwarming moments, and, of course, the shenanigans that only occur when the Greene family comes together. Reminisce with all your favorite Souls of Chicago couples and triad as they celebrate this joyous time of year.

A Special Christmas by JP Bowie
A romantic hideaway on a snow-covered mountain – what better place to meet the man who could heal a broken heart?

Question: What’s Brett Masters to do when his best laid plans for a special Christmas alone with his lover in a mountain cabin resort get axed because the lover up and leaves? Brett’s first instinct is to just suck it up, go home early and spend the Yuletide with his family – but it might have been a good idea if he’d called the airline and changed his flight to an earlier one.

Thwarted, he decides to use the cabin he’s paid for, all the while wondering if this form of self punishment is such a good idea. A romantic hideaway without the romantic partner – what’s that about? But fate steps in and takes him for a spin in the arms of Devyn Weston, the resort manager’s hunky brother.

What’s Brett to do when he and Devyn get stranded by a snowstorm?

This holiday gem came to my attention a couple of years ago but fate and time just wasn't on board and I didn't get a chance to read it till now.  A Special Christmas is a lovely read that begins when Brett is crushed to learn his boyfriend is not only ending it but has been seeing someone else and yet he let Brett plan an amazing Christmas getaway.  He decides to go home to his family for the holiday sooner than expected but forgot to change his travel plans until it was too late so he finds himself at the holiday getaway minus the cheating boyfriend.

I just wanted to wrap Brett up in bubblewrap and reassure him that things were not as bleak as he felt but then he meets Devyn and suddenly he decides for himself that maybe the heartbreak he felt wasn't such a bad thing after all.  This is just a lovely read that brightened my day despite the pain Brett deals with for most of the story.  Not only was A Special Christmas entertaining but it serves as a friendly reminder that sometimes we have to experience heartache to find the one who will warm the heart.


Click to Check Out Previous
Random Tales of Christmas 2017

Part 1  /  Part 2  /  Part 3  /  Part 4
Part 5  /  Part 6  /  Part 7  /  Part 8
Part 9  /  Part 10  /  Part 11

Texas Christmas by RJ Scott
*Written Excerpt*
Chapter 4
As soon as Marcus was out of sight of Jack and Riley, he stopped and smacked a hand to his forehead. What the hell did he just say? That he was in the area? They could probably see right through him. What must they think of him and his stupid teenage crush he had going on. He couldn’t help it, he was a man addicted to Liam’s smiles. Something about the young guy set off a million warning bells inside Marcus’s head. Too young, eight years younger than him, too emotional, too scared. Yet, when it came down to it, Marcus wanted to get to know Liam in ways not altogether innocent.

He found Robbie first, who, with his back to Marcus, was fiddling with a tap in the wall to the horse barn.

“Hi,” Marcus said and smiled back at Robbie when he grinned up at him.

“In the barn,” Robbie said by way of explanation. Marcus dipped his head in acknowledgment of the suggestion and the element of teasing.

He walked into the cool of the barn and the scents of horses assailed him. He inhaled—his rationale for getting a lung full of the smell would be that he wouldn’t then spend the next hour gagging whenever he caught a whiff of horse shit and hay. He waited until his eyes became accustomed to the gloom, then casually walked past each stall until finally he found Liam shoveling in one of the last stalls. For a second he stood and watched.

Liam was taller than his own five eight, but then most men were, he was used to that. He was probably just short of six foot but skinny with it. In the weeks since he’d first seen Liam, Marcus had noticed that Liam had filled out a little, but the man still needed to pull his belt tight to keep his pants in place on narrow hips. His back was kinda broad and the muscles in his arms bunched and released as he shoveled and dumped, then shoveled and dumped again. His dark hair was ruthlessly short, and sweat made his skin glisten even in this softly lit space.

Marcus hooked one foot on the lower rung of the stall gate and leaned over it. “Hey, cowboy.”

Liam yelped and turned so suddenly that shit flew off his shovel and missed Marcus by inches.

“Shit!” Liam exclaimed. He pressed a hand to his chest. “What the fuck?” he cursed. “You scared the hell out of me.”

Marcus said nothing, simply waited until the initial shock died down. There had been real fear in Liam’s expression, and he wanted to let Liam deal with that before they moved on to the general talking part of this meeting.

“What do you want?” Liam finally asked. His tone was quick and impatient. “I’m busy.”

“I was just driving by,” Marcus begun.

“The hell you were,” Liam snapped. “You live hell knows how far that way.” He hooked a thumb over his shoulder in the general direction of the city and beyond where Marcus lived. He turned back to the pile of shit and hay and who knew what else. All of it needed moving to the barrow next to him that was nearly half full.

“You can keep working,” Marcus said. He was trying to be helpful but knew he’d failed in that when Liam frowned at him.

“And you’re gonna do what? Stand there and stare at me?”

“Can I help it if I like what I see?”

Liam very deliberately hooked a pile of mess onto his shovel and hefted it into the waiting barrow. Marcus grinned at the combined sensations of sight of the muscles and the fact that Liam thought turning his back was going to work. They stood this way for a good ten minutes, and Marcus watched every move until finally he couldn’t really justify standing and staring any more.

“Dinner?” he asked.

Liam didn’t hesitate with his answer. “No.”

“One day you’ll say yes.”

Liam muttered a reply. “When hell freezes over.”

“See you soon,” Marcus added cheerily.

“Not if I see you first,” Liam snapped. He stood up and suddenly Marcus was near enough to kiss Liam. They stood so close that it would only take one movement from either of them and they would be kissing the hell out of each other. Marcus wasn’t sure who moved first but assumed they both leaned in. No hands but lips crashed and tongues tasted. There was nothing soft about the kiss, and it ended as soon as it began.

Liam stepped back and wiped his mouth with the back of his hand.

“What the fuck.”

Guilt consumed Marcus. He’d just gone into Liam’s personal space and near forced a kiss on the guy. No wonder Liam looked so shell-shocked.

“I’m sorry. I just wanted… Will you come to dinner… I want to talk…”


Seemed like that was Liam’s last word, and Marcus left the barn. When he was out of sight he stopped for a moment and lifted his face to the fall sun. He shouldn’t be riding Liam so hard, but there was something there, an indefinable attraction that flooded him whenever he saw Liam. Attraction definitely, lust, a little smatter of affection. There was pain in Liam’s expression and the heat of anger in his beautiful gray eyes, and Marcus wanted to know more.

“You okay?”

Marcus focused on the voice, then looked up at Robbie astride a big brown horse. Way up.

“Just talking,” Marcus explained.

“You harassing my staff?” Robbie asked quietly.

“Asking him out for dinner.”

“How many times is that?”

“I lost count at five.”

“Seems to me you’re likely moving into being a nuisance,” Robbie said without heat. He slid down from the back of the horse in a smooth movement. Marcus appreciated that he didn’t have to tilt his head back to actually see Robbie’s expression. Robbie wasn’t holding back even if he worked here and Marcus was Jack and Riley’s friend. A large part of him, the part that both lusted after Liam and cared for the young man, liked that Robbie had his eye on Liam.

Marcus shrugged. “He hasn’t punched me yet.”

“If he does it will be your own fault.”

“Duly noted.”

Robbie stood silently for a moment. “You remind me of Eli,” he said finally. Then he moved away and Marcus was left wondering what that meant. He liked Eli, although they hadn’t really sat and talked. Eli came from old money like Marcus, but that is where the similarity ended. Maybe Robbie meant the persistence thing. After climbing back into his car, he left the D and was back in the city before he realized it. Marcie met him at the door with a wide grin on her face.

“The McDonalds are pregnant,” she exclaimed.

His sister was as involved in the surrogates and the intended parents as much as he was, and he returned her grin before grabbing her and hugging her close. The McDonalds had been trying with their surrogate for over a year, and to finally hear a success was at hand was the best news of the day.

He followed Marcie up the stairs to their private apartments and listened as she chatted on about HCG levels and expectant dates. He wasn’t entirely focused on his sister when his brain was still using so much processing power on considering how to get Liam to go to dinner with him.

“Earth to Marcus.”

Marcus blinked as something passed in front of his face, and he realized it was Marcie waving a hand to snap him out of his thoughts.


“Thinking about Liam again?” she asked with a smirk.

Marcus groaned. God help brothers who had sisters as uncannily observant as he did. Two bottles of red and he’d spilled the whole sorry mess to Marcie a few weeks back. He couldn’t recall exactly what he had said to her but seemed it was enough for her to have teasing material to work with on a daily basis.

“Yeah,” he admitted with a sigh. “I was out at the D.”

“You have it so bad,” Marcie commented. She pulled out a tray of lasagna from the fridge sniffed it and grimaced. “We’re eating out. Then you can tell me all about Liam and his hair and his eyes and his body and the fact that all you want is to love him and feed him and call him squishy.”

“I hate you,” Marcus said dryly.

Marcie blew him a kiss. “No you don’t.”

“I do.”

“Not even for a second,” she laughed. “I’ll get my jacket and we’ll go for Italian.”

Marcus waited by the door and pulled out his cell. He had Liam’s number only because Liam had finally given in and let him have it.

Dinner? he texted.

The answer was immediate. No.

Marcus smiled at the answer. One day Liam would give in and type yes.

The Last Gift by Chrissy Munder
NICK REED’S first week on the new shift couldn’t be called bad. Different? Sure. He’d go there. An entire collection of tiny differences that when totaled? They made for a huge, uncomfortable change. A sure sign he’d fallen into a mind-numbing rut.

Which wasn’t hard to do when Nick’s life consisted of nothing but his shifts here at the convenience store, a max load of classes, his on-campus job at the computer lab, and—surprise—more studying because he also took classes online to make sure he graduated and was employed in a life-sustaining field before his brother finished high school. Money was tight, and even with Nick’s outrageous amount of student loan debt, his parents couldn’t afford two kids in college. Three, if you counted his little sister in the pipeline.

The most irritating difference on this particular morning? Why the store never seemed to get warm on this shift. A cold Nick was a grumpy Nick. He’d added another layer under his long-sleeved work polo, and he still felt the late November chill. Nick blamed the increase in customers letting in the elements. Not to mention the slush tracked in from the post-Thanksgiving snowstorm. Floor mats, people. Use them.

He mopped floors more in the hours between 4:00 a.m. and 8:00 a.m. than his entire previous shift. Add in the staggering amount of coffee he needed to keep brewed, and the time spent refilling the fresh baked donut and bagel displays, and the downtime Nick usually used to catch up on his homework vanished.

Turned out being near the freeway on and off ramps took on a whole new meaning during peak hours. No wonder Blaine had swapped with such enthusiasm. This shift sucked.

He shouldn’t complain. Finding out his Bio instructor had gone out on maternity leave a month early and her replacement had changed the open lab hours had not only sent Nick into a panic, but threatened to derail his graduation plans. So much for the hours he and his father had spent arranging his academic schedule and getting special permission to take most of his advanced, only offered once a year courses in his first couple of years, and the more accessible, intro courses here at the end.

“Change is hard,” Blaine mocked when he clocked out at 4:00 a.m. Friday morning, no doubt heading to Amanda’s, his on-again, off-again girlfriend and their store manager.

“Yeah, yeah,” Nick muttered. He opened his battered laptop, refusing to acknowledge the twinge in his chest as anything other than heartburn from the greasy burger he had for dinner. He didn’t have a clue how the complicated mess of Blaine and Amanda’s relationship worked, but at least they had each other. “Hey, be sure to tell Amanda thanks for letting us swap shifts again.”

The laptop screen flickered as the unit crawled back to life. Nick crossed his fingers it would finish booting. Poor baby only had to last through another term before retiring to some electronics graveyard.

Unexpected Christmas by Nell Iris
A few minutes later, a vehicle approached from behind. Reacting instinctively, I turned around and waved my arms, hoping the big truck would stop and have mercy on my freezing ass.

I let out a giddy yelp as it slowed down, but it got stuck in my throat when the driver rolled down the window.

He was huge and couldn't hold his head upright without banging it on the ceiling. Big steel gauges adorned both his ears -- at least an inch and a half wide -- and his hair was black and so closely cropped it resembled a five o'clock shadow more than an actual haircut.

"You need a ride?" he asked and his voice was deeper than the Mariana Trench, perfectly matching his frightening appearance. Black tattoos crept up his neck and snaked down his hands below his sleeves. His shoulders were wide, his muscles strained the sleeves of his thick black jacket, and his cheeks were hollow. I was one second from shitting myself.

"I'm not riding with a serial killer!" The words slipped out of my mouth and I groaned. I couldn't have kept my mouth shut for five fucking seconds to avoid being chopped up and thrown to the wolves?

He threw his head back and let out a thunderous laugh.

"What's so goddamned funny?" I glared at him, but he didn't seem to care.

"I'm no serial killer."

"And I'm just supposed to take your fucking word for it?" I raised an eyebrow. I knew I was being combative and taking out my frustration on this stranger, but I couldn't stop myself.

"You could call my ma for references."

"Ha ha. Very funny." With a deep sigh, I resigned to my fate and started walking again. No way was I getting into a car with that mammoth of a man.

"Where you goin'?" he called after me. When I didn't bother to answer, he eased off the break and let his truck crawl after me.

I swirled around. "Stop following me, you creep," I hissed.

He let go of the steering wheel with one hand and held it up as if he surrendered. "Look, man. It's freezin'. You're wet and miserable. Get in the truck and lemme take you wherever you're goin'." His deep voice was surprisingly gentle. Non-threatening, as if he'd come to expect reactions like mine.

"I'm really not a bad guy." He stuck out his lower lip in a pout that would have made a five-year-old girl green with envy and I had to bite my lip to stop a smile from erupting.

"Really?" I tried to hang on to my mistrust, but he made it hard. His appearance screamed RUN AND HIDE, but there was something soft in his eyes that told a different story.

He shot me a crooked smile. "It was worth a try. It works on my niece every time."

The fucker knew all the right words to say to disarm me. "And how old is she?"


I huffed out a reluctant chuckle. "Well, you know how it is. Everyone always says how they couldn't believe their neighbor was a serial killer because he seemed like such a nice guy."

His eyes grew big and round. "You're sayin' you don't trust my niece as a character witness?" He sounded as I'd just delivered the biggest insult of his life, but the amused glint in his eyes told me it was all for show.

"Can you blame me?"

"I guess not." He sighed and grew serious. "Please. I couldn't live with myself if I left you here to freeze to death."

My body screamed at me to take him up on his offer. The ice pellets were relentless and I was soaked and gloomy and was starting to feel like maybe being ax murdered wouldn't be the worst thing that could happen to me right now.

The openness in his posture and honesty in his eyes had me on the verge of caving. "You promise you won't kill me?" I sounded like a scared little kid even to my own ears.

Ever-Greene: A Souls Christmas by Annabella Michaels
Gio stuck out his bottom lip in an adorable pout and I couldn’t resist leaning over to kiss it. He kissed me back then gave Sarah a kiss on the cheek before blowing into her neck and making her squeal in delight as it tickled her. My phone rang as he began to tickle her ribs and I dug it out of my back pocket to answer it.

“Hello?” I answered with a laugh.

“What in the world is going on there?” Michelle asked, obviously hearing the loud noises through the phone.

“Tickle war,” I told her.

“Oh, sounds like fun! Tell my niece to fight dirty,” she said with a laugh.

“I’ll come to her defense if I need to,” I assured her with a chuckle.

“Good. Now, I’m calling for a reason. We need you guys to get over to Mom and Dad’s place as soon as possible,” she informed me.

“Why? What’s up?” I asked.

“It’s competition time,” she said deviously.

“Ugh! Seriously? My legs are still sore from climbing that hill over and over in the sled-riding competition and I’m just starting to feel my feet after being outside for four hours yesterday for the snowman-building competition,” I teasingly complained. The truth was, Gio and I had both had a blast, even if we’d lost both challenges.

“Oh, quit your whining. You and Carter are younger than me and I’m not complaining,” Michelle pointed out.

“Are you even going to tell me what the competition is?” I asked.

“Nope. You’ll find out along with everyone else when they get here,” she teased.

“Fine, we’ll be there soon,” I said.

“Another competition?” Gio asked as I hung up.

“Yeah, I’m sorry. I can call her back if you’d rather just stay in tonight,” I offered.

“No way! We took it easy on them the last couple of times. It’s time we kick some Greene as…” I cut him off with a loud cough and nodded my head at our daughter who was still on his lap, watching the TV. “Bootay,” Gio finished with a smile. I laughed and grabbed him by the back of the neck, so I could pull him forward for a kiss. 

A Special Christmas by JP Bowie
“Just hear those sleigh bells jingling, ring-ting-tingling too. Come on, it’s lovely weather for a sleigh-ride together with you…”

As he slowed his BMW almost to a halt on the crowded freeway, Brett Masters groaned and snapped off his car radio. No way was he going to start being bombarded with Christmas songs this early in the year! Especially in his present frame of mind. Grudgingly, he had to admit it wasn’t all that early. He’d actually been preparing for this particular Christmas for some time, ever since he’d got Jamie to agree on a Christmas Eve and Christmas Day for just the two of them—alone in a log cabin hideaway up in Big Bear Mountain…

It had taken a long time, and all of Brett’s considerable salesman technique, together with lots of kisses and caresses to convince Jamie that it would be fabulous, and that their respective parents wouldn’t mind if they showed up the day after Christmas to join in the family celebrations.

That last part had been the most difficult to navigate, and Brett had spent a lot of time on the phone with his mom then Jamie’s mom, explaining that as it was his and Jamie’s fifth Christmas together and he wanted to make it a really special one. His mother had positively whined at the prospect of a Brett-less Christmas, but he’d remained adamant. After all, for the past five years he and Jamie had accommodated their families by celebrating their Christmas together early then flying off Christmas Eve—Brett to Kansas City, Jamie to Jacksonville, Florida—to pass the next three days surrounded by their many siblings and their siblings many, many kids.

“Imagine what it’ll be like, Jamie,” he’d whispered in his lover’s ear after what he remembered now as an extremely hot bout of sex. “Just the two of us waking up on Christmas morning together—no kids jumping up and down on the bed, demanding that you get up right now and help them open those scads of gifts they get every year.”

They had compared notes after every Christmas and had laughed repeatedly at how similar their Christmas mornings were, all those miles apart.

RJ Scott
RJ Scott is the bestselling romance author of over 100 romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men and women who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn't with family either reading or writing.

The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn't like it one little bit, and she has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.

Chrissy Munder
Chrissy Munder writes contemporary M/M romance filled with everyday men and extraordinary passion to transport readers into their personal world of love, laughter, and desire

She is an avid reader, a wanderer of Michigan’s wilderness, and, while not in any particular order, a lover of lists, zombies, and bad sci-fi. She’s also perpetually behind on everything—except feeding the cat. There are those who might tell you she started writing LGBTQ romance as a way to justify her office supply addiction, but shhhhh! don’t listen to them.

After too many jobs in too many states she’s eagerly awaiting a far too distant retirement and the chance to become a full-time Lake Michigan beachcomber. Until then, she’s excited to share her love of romance, laughter, and happy-ever-afters.

Chrissy loves to chat with her readers so don't be shy! Visit her on Twitter, her website, Facebook, or Goodreads.

Nell Iris
Nell Iris is a romantic at heart who believes everyone deserves a happy ending. She’s a bona fide bookworm (learned to read long before she started school), wouldn’t dream of going anywhere without something to read (not even the ladies room), loves music (and singing along but let’s face it, she’s not Celine Dion), and is a real Star Trek nerd (Make it so). She loves words, poetry, wine, and Sudoku, and absolutely adores elephants!

Nell believes passionately in equality for all regardless of race, gender or sexuality, and wants to make the world a better, less hateful, place.

Nell is a 40-something bisexual Swedish woman, married to the love of her life, and a proud mama of a grown daughter. She left the Scandinavian cold and darkness for warmer and sunnier Malaysia a few years ago, where she spends her days writing, surfing the Internet, enjoying the heat, and eating good food. One day she decided to chase her life long dream of being a writer, sat down in front of her laptop, and wrote a story about two men falling in love.

Nell Iris writes gay romance, prefers sweet over angsty, and wants to write diverse and different characters.

Annabella Michaels
I am married to my high school sweetheart who let’s face it, is a saint for putting up with me all of these years. Together we have been blessed with the chance to raise two amazing human beings and so far we haven’t screwed it up; I’ll let you know for sure later. I am a business owner and spend more time laughing than actually working most days. I love watching movies, cooking, going to the beach and spending time with my family and best friends. I am an obsessive reader who is a complete sucker for a good love story, but loves to feel a broad range of emotions throughout a book. I think real life is hard enough and so my books offer twists and turns, but always with a happy ending.

JP Bowie
J.P. Bowie was born and raised in Aberdeen, Scotland. He wrote his first (unpublished) novel – a science fiction tale of brawny men and brawnier women that made him a little suspect in the eyes of his family for a while.

Leaving home at age eighteen for the bright lights of London, he found himself in the midst of a “diverse and creative crowd” that eventually led him to the performing arts. For the next twelve years he sang, danced and acted his way around the theatres of London and the provinces, appearing in shows with many famous British singers, actors and comedians.

After immigrating to the US and living for many years in Las Vegas where he worked for that incomparable duo, Siegfried and Roy, J.P. found himself entranced by the fair city of San Diego where he currently lives with his partner, Phil.

RJ Scott

Sean Crisden(Texas Christmas Narrator)

Chrissy Munder

Nell Iris

Annabella Michaels

JP Bowie

Texas Christmas(Audio) by RJ Scott

The Last Gift by Chrissy Munder

Unexpected Christmas by Nell Iris

Ever-Greene: A Souls Christmas by Annabella Michaels
A Special Christmas by JP Bowie

Monday Morning's Menu: Wreck the Halls by Jessica Payseur

Business has been good at Paul’s Café in Madison, Wisconsin—until a few months before Christmas. When Nick opens Nick’s Restaurant next door, Paul watches his customers leave for cheaper food and an owner who smiles more. With his livelihood at stake, Paul lashes out, trying to drive away Nick’s customers, but Nick won’t go easy, and escalating sabotage threatens to ruin the holidays for both of them.

Paul thinks all he wants for Christmas is to see Nick’s Restaurant go under, but the more he tries to drive Nick away, the less he’s sure he wants him to go. Nick is everything Paul secretly craves, but by the time he realizes Nick is all he really wants for the holidays, he might have ruined any chance for them to get together. And there might not be a present in the world that can fix that.

A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2017 Advent Calendar collection Stocking Stuffers.

Healthy competetion can be a good thing for competing businesses but when the owners take it too far or fail to let go all bets are off.  Paul and Nick realize that they need to end this war but when neither one is willing to do so will it go too far?  And what happens when they both realize that perhaps their feelings of competetion is only a cover for something deeper?

Wreck the Halls is a pleasantly entertaining holiday short.  There is some that might label it as cliché but sometimes its cliché because it works and when the author does it well, then cliché is exactly whats needed.  This is the first time I've read Jessica Payseur and I can safely say it won't be the last.  If you are looking for deep and meaningful holiday fare then perhaps Wreck the Halls isn't going to tick your box but if what you want is a well written, fun, romantic comedy then I can safely say that this is exactly what you need.  I laughed and shook my head in equal measures at Paul and Nick's antics.  When I can say I'm happier at the end than I was when I started, well I can't ask for more.  And the fact that's its in Wisconsin is just an added bonus for this Wisconsinite.


“HE’S BACK in the kitchen,” said the breathless waitress as she hauled away the mess of plates and napkins at the abandoned table.

Paul thanked her and turned, tugging on the bottom of his sweater. He hadn’t bothered to throw on a coat since Nick’s Restaurant was just next door to his place. He’d had a moment, so he figured he ought to introduce himself to his rival.

It had only been a few months, but Nick’s business was really eating into the profits of Paul’s Café, and Paul was not happy about it. He had been putting off a potential confrontation for weeks now, but as the calendar turned over into December and Christmas was fast approaching, the time had come to take some form of action. The first step was to get a feel for Nick.

The damned kitchen was loud and busy, like the rest of the place, so unlike Paul’s Café next door. Paul narrowed his eyes and scanned the area for anyone who looked to be in charge while workers wove around him.

A man dressed in a button-up shirt peeled away from the other staff and pasted a warm smile on his face as he caught sight of Paul. He was probably about Paul’s age, midthirties, although Paul never had been good at guessing that sort of thing. His hair was brown and long enough to get in his eyes, which were also brown. His white skin was pale, he was clean-shaven, and Paul guessed he was who he’d come to see even as the man motioned to him.

“Hey, I’m Nick. If you’d just return to your table, I’ll make sure you get your order ASAP.”

“I’m not here for food,” Paul said, not caring how much of an asshole he sounded like. How Nick had so much hair still left on his head annoyed him. Paul had started balding before he hit thirty. He grew a short, neatly trimmed beard to try to make up for it, but it figured his rival would have a full head of hair.

“What can I do for you, then?” Nick asked, smile unwavering.

“I’m your neighbor. Paul, Paul’s Café.”

Jessica PayseurAuthor Bio:
Jessica Payseur has been cursed with the ability to see a story in anything at all. This is especially useful in the long Wisconsin winter months, when the only inspiration the world gives is endless snow and the lingering promise of frostbite for the unwise.