Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Blog Tour: And the Beagle Makes Three by Geoffrey Knight

Title: And the Beagle Makes Three
Author: Geoffrey Knight
Genre: M/M Romance, Comedy
Release Date: April 12, 2018
When Stuart Summerfield finally realized he was gay, he knew that telling his beloved wife Claire would be one of the hardest, most heartbreaking things he would ever do. Unfortunately Stu’s coming out wasn’t simply heartbreaking… it had the most unexpected and tragic consequences imaginable.

Now, almost one year after the car accident that took Claire’s life, Stu has buried himself in his work to push through the pain and guilt while doing his best to raise, Atticus, their young son, who has himself handled his grief in his own unique way. While getting by one day at a time proves difficult enough, it never crossed Stu’s mind that the family’s annual weekend away at the lakeside home of his sister-in-law, Bethany, would still go ahead now that Claire was gone.

Atticus, however, has other ideas. With his loyal beagle Digby by his side, Atty makes a phone call to Aunt Bethany in an effort to keep the family tradition alive, no matter what chaos and calamity might ensue.

And so over the course of one weekend filled with commotion—and emotion—Stu and Atty are about to learn that healing can open up your heart, that grief can sometimes be good, and that nobody travels the road to recovery alone.

Atty sat on a chair outside the principal’s office. He turned his head when he saw a flash of daylight reflect on the well-mopped floors as the door at the end of the corridor opened and his father come running toward him.

Stu practically slid to his knees in front of his son, grabbing Atty’s arms, feeling his forehead, looking for any bruises from bullies or red marks on Atty’s knuckles on the off-chance he’d fought back.

“Atty? Buddy, you okay? What’s happened?”

Atticus gave his father a concerned look and said quietly, “Dad, I made the whole class cry.”

“What do you mean you made the whole class cry? Why? How?”

“I didn’t mean to. I don’t think they liked my presentation.”

“What presentation? You didn’t tell me you had a presentation.”

“You were busy, I didn’t wanna bother you. I’ve never failed an assignment before. What do you think it feels like to get an F?”

Stu gave Atty a tight, long hug. “It’s okay to get an F once in a while. Nobody’s perfect all of the time, Atty.”

At that moment, the door to Principal Parsons’s office opened.

“Ah, Mr. Summerfield. I thought I heard your voice. Would you mind stepping inside?”

Principal Parsons gestured for Stu to enter the office, but as Atty moved to follow his father the principal held up his hand. “You can stay here for the moment, Atty. We’d like to have a word with your father in private. We won’t be long.” The door clicked shut and Atty took his seat and waited.

Inside Principal Parsons’s office, Mrs. Tilbury was already waiting for Stu to join them.

“Mr. Summerfield, it’s nice to see you again.” Mrs. Tilbury shook Stu’s hand but had trouble looking him in the eye.

“Is this about the beagle again?” Stu asked, taking the spare seat as Principal Parsons gestured to it.

“Yes, and we’re concerned the problem isn’t going away,” the principal answered. “It seems to be in complete contrast with the way Atticus appears to be working through his issues creatively.”

Stu shook his head. “I don’t understand.”

Mrs. Tilbury sat forward. “A few weeks ago, the children were given an assignment. They were asked to put together a presentation in any medium or format they liked, so long as it covered the topic of ‘The Story of My Life So Far’.” She took a breath and lost eye contact with Stu once more. “Naturally, given the last year that Atticus has had—”

“Eleven months,” Stu interrupted quietly. “It’s been eleven months.”

Mrs. Tilbury cleared her throat and continued. “Given the last eleven months that Atticus has been through, I gave him the option not to participate, but he insisted on putting together a presentation.”

“Was it bad? Did he do something wrong?”

Principal Parsons and Mrs. Tilbury exchanged glances before Parsons said, “Why don’t you see for yourself. If you wouldn’t mind turning your chair around.”

It was only then that Stu noticed the film projector facing the back wall of the office. Mrs. Tilbury switched off the lights and set the projector running, the rickety film of Atty’s presentation jerking into motion. 

What is the biggest influence/interest that brought you to this genre? 
When I started writing gay fiction about 12 years ago, there was a real gap in the market. Before that I was writing more traditional, heterosexual fiction, but as a gay man I realized I wanted to read stories I could relate to. And so I started writing the kind of books that, as a gay man, I wanted to read. I began with gay adventure. When I was a young boy growing up gay, I was desperate to read stories and see movies with adventure heroes I could truly aspire to. I always wondered why the hero had to get the girl in the end; I was desperate for the hero to get the guy in the end. When I wrote my first gay adventure novel The Cross of Sins I honestly thought I was writing it just for myself, I thought ‘Nobody would ever want to read this’. Obviously I was wrong because the book sold. Now, 12 years later, it’s still selling well and I’m about to release the fifth book in the series in a couple of months. Now I write all kinds of gay fiction genres – romance, adventures, coming-of-age dramas, romantic-comedies. I love writing all types of stories, so long as I’m adding to the canon of gay characters in fiction, that’s what really matters to me.

When writing a book, what is your favorite part of the creative process (outline, plot, character names, editing, etc)?
Definitely NOT editing – that’s what editors are for, thank goodeness! I do, however, love the outlining process, creating the story, building strong characters and figuring out the journey they’re about to go on. I could sit and come up with storylines and characters all day long! I also love coming up with character names. It sounds silly, but a name can really make or break a character. The name has to suit their persona and journey, whether they’re a hero, a villain or a lovelorn hopeless romantic. 

When reading a book, what genre do you find most interesting/intriguing?
I love them all, so long as the characters are worth investing in. It’s the same with my writing. Sometimes I’m in the mood for something light and breezy, sometimes I’m in the mood for some thrills, and sometimes I’m in the mood for something that will reach deep into my heart. 

If you could co-author with any author, past or present, who would you choose?
Oh, I love Patricia Highsmith’s work. She was an author in the 1950s who was one of the first American authors to really explore the theme and effects of homosexuality, but she did it in such a thrilling way. The Talented Mr. Ripley and The Price of Salt are such extraordinary books, she was truly ahead of her time!

Have you always wanted to write or did it come to you "later in life"?
I’ve been writing stories for as long as I can remember. As a kid my family moved around a lot (and I mean, a LOT! I’m 48 years old and I’m currently living in my 47th home. You can do the math). So I spent most of my childhood making up my own friends in the characters and stories I wrote. When I was 21 I wrote my first full-length novel which was a whopping 700 pages long. I learned to write with restraint after that. I have no doubt I’ll be writing stories all the way to the grave. Let’s hope that’s a long way off!

Geoffrey KnightAuthor Bio:
Geoffrey Knight is the author of more than 30 gay fiction novels, novellas and short stories, ranging in genre from gay adventure, gay romance, gay suspense and gay comedies. He is the recipient of two Rainbow Awards including Best Mystery Winner and Best Overall Gay Fiction Runner-up. His work has been featured in several anthologies including Best Gay Erotica 2013, and he appeared as Guest of Honor at the inaugural Rainbow Con in Florida, 2014.

Geoffrey has worked in advertising, politics and journalism, but nothing is as fun as telling stories. He lives with his partner, their baby daughter, two dogs and two cats in a rambling old house in North Queensland, Australia, where the paint is fraying and life is good.


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Release Blitz: The Sinner & the Saint by RJ Scott

Title: The Sinner & the Saint
Author: RJ Scott
Series: Ellery Mountain #8
Genre: M/M Romance
Release Date: April 25, 2018
Cover Design: Meredith Russell
Army medic Ben Rockwell is in Ellery to work with the Veterans Center creating a new specialist unit for post trauma care. Desperate to make amends for battlefield decisions he regrets, he is focused on the unit and nothing else. Until some stranger moves in next door and throws him a curveball. He’s no hero, even though everyone says he is, and the lies burn inside him.

Leaving drama and chaos in his wake, Nicholas Merrick fled London and is hiding out in his friend Jason’s house, until everything back home dies a death. The choices he made in his life were to keep his best friend safe, but as a result everyone sees him as the bad guy.

When these two meet, the attraction is instant. Can they ever be their true selves, and find love as a result?

Chapter 1
Loud banging, with added yelling, pulled Nick out of a nightmare. After a restless, irritable, crunchy-messy night of tossing and turning, he had finally fallen asleep some time before dawn, and now at fuck o’clock in the morning there was knocking at the front door. And some asshole shouting words that he couldn’t make out. Was this part of his dream? He couldn’t tell.

For the longest time he lay flat on his back, unwilling to move. The sheets were wrapped around him like a mummy, the quilt on the floor, and he was still in that half world between nightmare and reality. Even closing his eyes didn’t help dispel the vivid images of him walking up to the Oscar podium completely naked and with the Queen pointing and laughing at him.

Naked as the day he was born, hanging loose and free, and no one saying a thing. Apart from the laughing that was. Like it was okay that one of the Oscar nominees was walking up the steps free of any and all clothing.

Not to mention no one commented on the Queen throwing popcorn at him.

Yep, it had been that kind of nightmare, and it wasn’t the first time he’d had it. And where the Oscar fear came from he didn’t know. There would never be a chance of an Oscar for. Not for the guy whose acting career had happened by accident and formed only because of a personal rebellion against his straight laced family. His resume included two sequels to the highly profitable, but formulaic, shit-bad, Angels of Bedlam franchise, with his entire fee going charity because he didn’t need the money.

Nick hadn’t been in the first UK funded Bedlam film. Said film had been praised for its ingenious twist on a dark horror romance. No, he was the handy British villain in the next two, the studio cashing in on any money that was left out there in a saturated market by ticking all the boxes. Explosions, tick. Strong, but mostly naked, female lead, tick. Sexy down on his luck, in te wrong place at the wrong time, male lead, tick.

And him, the ubiquitous bad guy with the English accent.

The follow up were certainly not Oscar material, and once Nick pulled his fragmented sleep-addled thoughts into line, he focused on the statistical likelihood of even being nominated for an Oscar in the first place, let alone accepting it naked.

“Fuck me,” he muttered to the empty room and rolled onto his front. The banging had stopped and no one actually knew he was here, so, he wasn’t going to answer the door in a place that wasn’t even his.

Jason McInnery and his husband, Kieran, lived in this stunning home, in the small town of Ellery, Tennessee. Glass floor to ceiling, wide open rooms, a pool in the garden, and the most comprehensive jungle gym he’d ever seen for Jason and Kieran’s son, Jonas. Even the damn guest room was beautiful, a huge wood carving took up nearly one wall, and the view from the window out to the mountain was stunning. At least that was the adjective he was supposed to use for what he could see. Objectively, he could see it was spectacular, but was too lost in confusion since he got here to think about it too much. A quick glance at the clock showed him it was five am, like midnight or something back in London, and still dark in the shadow of the mountain, so he rolled over and pulled the covers up to his neck.

Even in the middle of the chaotic remnants of his nightmare he welcomed the heat that cocooned him and willed the knocking to stop. Which it did. The mess of dreams forgotten, he drifted on as many good thoughts as he could muster and was very nearly asleep when the banging started up again. He groaned and hid his face under the pillow, willing the person creating the noise to go away. Then it ceased again, and he closed his eyes, but didn’t remove the pillow. Dawn was too close now and the room would fill with light because he hadn’t even taken the time to pull the drapes.

Unfortunately, his bladder had other ideas about what he needed to do, and cursing, he grabbed the sheets and untwisted himself. Feet planted on the floor he scrubbed a hand over his face, the untamed beard was just another reminder of everything that was horribly wrong about his life right now. Normally he would have just the right amount of stubble, but the last instalment of Angels of Bedlam, cunningly entitled, Bedlam Adrift, called for him to be a castaway, hence the beard, which he’d left to tangle.

No point in worrying about it anyway. He’d left London to get away from paparazzi, and their incessant need for more, and he was in unofficial hiding. Therefore, no one would see his beard, or his bloodshot eyes.

He caught sight of himself in the mirror.

“Jesus, you look fucked.”

Bedhead. Bags under his eyes. Beard. It was a whole cacophony of B-shit. Yawning widely, he padded across the bedroom to the half bath, emptying his bladder and washing his hands. He’d gone to bed as nature intended. Well, warm nature anyway, completely naked, which probably led to nightmare. Packing back home had been done in less than five minutes, his priority was money, passport, his phone, his laptop and associated chargers. It seemed like his messed-up head hadn’t thought any kind of pajamas were needed, or indeed underwear.

The next choice was shower or bed, and the exhaustion of the past few days, the media attention, making sure Heather was okay, fleeing the UK, ending up here in the middle of rural Tennessee, it was all too much and he sighed.

“Bed it is,” he muttered to his reflection. As soon as he woke up he was going online to order everything he’d forgot to pack. Jason had said to help himself to anything he needed but helping himself to his friend’s clothes didn’t feel right.

He yawned again, and stepped out into the cooler bedroom, eyes only half open.

“Hands where I can see them,” someone shouted, and Nick, startled, his heart pounding, fell backwards into the bathroom, catching himself on the jamb as best he could. He blinked to focus on the man in front of him.

The cop.

The gun.

The cop holding a gun on him. Immediately he raised his hands, and then lowered them to cover his junk, and then raised them again when the cop didn’t move.

Author Bio:
RJ’s goal is to write stories with a heart of romance, a troubled road to reach happiness, and most importantly, that hint of a happily ever after.

RJ Scott is the bestselling author of over one hundred romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men 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.


The Saint & the Sinner #8


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Release Tour: Love, Music, Madness by Tabitha Rhys

Title: Love, Music, Madness
Author: Tabitha Rhys
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance
Release Date: April 25, 2018
Songwriting partners Lawson Harper and Jessa Warlow’s musical ambitions are derailed when their so-called relationship ends disastrously. However, neither Lawson nor Jessa is willing to give up on the album’s worth of soul-searing songs they wrote together—songs they’re sure are good enough to change both their lives.

Will the chemistry that fuels their creativity drive them to make the record of a lifetime, or only to absolute madness?

Chapter 1
I had no idea why Jessa Warlow wanted to meet with me. For one thing, I hardly knew her. She was one of my brother’s friends back in high school, but I hadn’t seen her for years. Besides that, Jessa is what I can only call Gunther, Pennsylvania royalty. It’s not just that she’s pretty in an old movie star kind of way. She’s also an artist, and a singer. Everybody in town always swore she’d be on the radio someday. I couldn’t imagine she’d have time to meet up with an old friend’s kid brother for nostalgic purposes only.

I found Jessa’s choice of location just as perplexing. The windows of the bar were blacked out—porno-shop style—and the only patrons under fifty were some greasy rockabilly kids slinking around by the pool tables. In the back of the room, a massive jukebox threw off a radioactive glow, but even that saving grace had been ruined. The rockabilly bastards were playing Morrissey on loop.

I figured Jessa would clear up all my questions as soon as she arrived. The problem was, I’d been parked on a barstool for nearly twenty minutes and she still hadn’t shown. Chances were, she’d changed her mind. Of course, if she had, I wouldn’t know it. I’d never been able to convince myself to shell out for a cell phone, so any last-minute cancellation messages would only end up on the answering machine back at my mother’s house.

After another five minutes alone in a bar redolent of fresh vomit and ancient cigarettes, all I could do was pull my trusty corduroy jacket over my hoodie and prepare to make my exit. But I was too hasty. The second I touched one foot down onto the stained carpet, a hand locked on my wrist.

I looked up in surprise—and straight into Jessa Warlow’s unmistakable cat-like eyes.

She narrowed them and smiled. “Lawson Harper?”

“At, uh . . . at your service,” I said with only a slight stutter.

“I knew it!” Jessa released me and slid onto the barstool to my right. “Though I must say, you look quite different from the last time I saw you. You know, back when you and your little sister used to sit in the kitchen eating peanut butter sandwiches—while your brother’s friends filled your tiny lungs with second-hand smoke.”

I laughed, careful to keep my mouth closed so as not to reveal a set of teeth nobody would want to show off, and gave Jessa a once-over. She had changed too. Her sandy hair, which once fell in a tangle down her back, was now cut neatly at her shoulders. She was also dressed more smartly than I remembered—in a sweater dress and a military-style coat—but her face was still the same. Heart-shaped, with those feline eyes.

“Going to tell me what we’re doing here?” I asked as I cast my gaze around the bar.

She shrugged. “What can I say? I don’t want to run into any of my old friends tonight.”

I couldn’t imagine why Jessa Warlow would want to hide out. If her friends knew she was in town, I was pretty sure they would roll out the red carpet.

“Of course,” Jessa went on, “you’re probably wondering why I wanted to meet with you at all.”

I was. But I had to wait for my answer because, very suddenly, a bug-eyed bloke of a bartender planted his arms in front of us and raised his brows expectantly.

“Gin and tonic,” Jessa tossed out.

I asked for a rum and cola as smoothly as I could. I’d only been twenty-one for a few months, and I didn’t want to come off like a kid. Or an amateur.

If I did, Jessa—who would have been twenty-five, same as my brother—didn’t appear to notice. As soon as the barkeep moved off, she turned back my way. “The first thing I should tell you is that I’m not here in Gunther for a visit. I quit my job in Philadelphia and moved back home just last week.”

That was a surprise. If I ever found a way to get out of Gunther, I’d never come back. Not in a million years. “Why?”

“I had a good job in the design department of a big company, but it wasn’t creative—and I want to be creative again. Very badly. I also want to take another shot at a career as a musician. A serious one this time.”

When the bartender set down our cocktails, cold and sweating, I reached for my wallet.

Jessa knocked my hand away. “I invited you here. I pay.”

I let her. Mostly because I wanted to hear more. Especially the part that had to do with me. “What do you mean by ‘serious’?” I pressed.

“In high school and college, I was always in a rush, too eager to get out in front of a crowd. This time, I want to build out and polish my songs. I want to record them. Make a real record.” Jessa stirred her drink fiercely. “You still play the guitar?”

I watched her ice cubes chase each other around the glass. “I do.” Work and school kept me running, but most nights I fell asleep playing along to one of the old cassettes my father left behind when he skipped town. Sometimes it was the only way I could get my mind quiet.

“Then perhaps,” she said, “you’d like to help me out.”

It took me a few beats to fully comprehend that Jessa Warlow was asking me to write music with her, when I never expected she would remember I played music at all.

I suppressed a smile. “I want to help,” I told her. “The only problem is, I’m not much of a songwriter.”

Jessa considered. “Well, I’ve got lyrics, melodies, chords. All I really need is a guitarist who can add some interesting leads. Maybe a breakdown or two.” She pointed her plastic stirrer in my direction. “We could always meet up for a session at my place and see how it goes. I mean, if you’re interested.”

“I’m interested,” I said, careful not to sound too interested. You know, not creepy-interested. Or desperate-interested. “When did you want to get together?”

I felt Jessa’s eyes brush over me. “How about now?”

“Now? As in right this minute?”

“Unless you want to stay and finish that drink.” She peered into my tepid rum and cola. “How is it anyway?”

“I haven’t had any.”

“Oh good.” Jessa’s hand locked down on my wrist for the second time that night. “Then you can drive.”

Author Bio:
Tabitha Rhys is a writer and mom with a passion for music, misfits, and subculture. She grew up in the Philadelphia suburbs and now resides in Riverside, CA with her husband and son.


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Release Blitz: Exploration by Quinn Ward

Title: Exploration
Author: Quinn Ward
Series: Kinky in the City #1
Genre: M/M Romance, D/s
Release Date: April 24, 2018
Cover Design: Cover Me, Darling
The reluctant manager of his family’s restaurant, Frankie attempts to live up to the legacy of his father and grandfather. Running a business that isn't his passion and trying to do it without asking for help leaves him turning to less-than-legal means when he wants to surrender control.

Newly divorced, Calvin no longer lives in the closet, leaving him searching for what he most desires- control. So when he finds Frankie on his knees in the back room of a local bar, Calvin sees the sub he’s only ever fantasized about having.

Can Calvin find the confidence to explore his dominant side while showing his younger roommate that submission isn't only about whips and pain?

Author Bio:
Quinn writes LGBTQ romance with a kick. Their stories center around the relationship building between the characters, but also shows how compatible they are in the bedroom (or wherever else the urge strikes).


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