New Release Review and Giveaway! THE RUIN OF A RAKE by Cat Sebastian

Together, they must decide what they’re willing to risk for love. 
 
 
THE RUIN OF A RAKE
Cat Sebastian
Releasing July 4, 2017
Avon Impulse

Rogue. Libertine. Rake. Lord Courtenay has been called many things and has never much cared. But after the publication of a salacious novel supposedly based on his exploits, he finds himself shunned from society. Unable to see his nephew, he is willing to do anything to improve his reputation, even if that means spending time with the most proper man in London.Julian Medlock has spent years becoming the epitome of correct behavior. As far as he cares, if Courtenay finds himself in hot water, it’s his own fault for behaving so badly—and being so blasted irresistible. But when Julian’s sister asks him to rehabilitate Courtenay’s image, Julian is forced to spend time with the man he loathes—and lusts after—most.

As Courtenay begins to yearn for a love he fears he doesn’t deserve, Julian starts to understand how desire can drive a man to abandon all sense of propriety. But he has secrets he’s determined to keep, because if the truth came out, it would ruin everyone he loves. Together, they must decide what they’re willing to risk for love.


London, 1817

Julian pursed his lips as he gazed at the symmetrical brick façade of his sister’s house. It was every bit as bad as he had feared. He could hear the racket from the street, for God’s sake. He pulled the brim of his hat lower on his forehead, as if concealing his face would go any distance toward mitigating the damage done by his sister having turned her house into a veritable brothel. Right in the middle of Mayfair, and at eleven in the morning, when the entire ton was on hand to bear witness to her degradation, no less. Say what one wanted about Eleanor—and at this moment Julian could only imagine what was being said—but she did not do things by halves.

As he climbed the steps to her door, the low rumble of masculine voices drifted from an open second story window. Somebody was playing a pianoforte—badly—and a lady was singing out of key.

No, not a lady. Julian suppressed a sigh. Whoever these women were in his sister’s house, they were not ladies. No lady in her right mind would consort with the sort of men Eleanor had been entertaining lately. Every young buck with a taste for vice had made his way to her house over these last weeks, along with their mistresses or courtesans or whatever one was meant to call them. And the worst of them, the blackguard who had started Eleanor on her path to becoming a byword for scandal, was Lord Courtenay.

A shiver trickled down Julian’s spine at the thought of encountering the man, and he could not decide whether it was from simple, honest loathing or something much, much worse.

The door swung open before Julian had raised his hand to the knocker.

“Mr. Medlock, thank goodness.” The look of abject relief on the face of Eleanor’s butler might have struck Julian as vaguely inappropriate under any other circumstance. But considering the tableau that presented itself in Eleanor’s vestibule, the butler’s informality hardly registered.

Propped against the elegantly papered wall, a man in full evening dress snored peacefully, a bottle of brandy cradled in his arms and a swath of bright crimson silk draped across his leg. A lady’s gown, Julian gathered. The original wearer of the garment was, mercifully, not present.

“I came as soon as I received your message.” Julian had not been best pleased to receive a letter from his sister’s butler, of all people, begging that he return to London ahead of schedule. Having secured a coveted invitation to a very promising house party, he was loath to leave early in order to evict a set of bohemians and reprobates from his sister’s house.

“The cook is threatening to quit, sir,” said the butler. Tilbury, a man of over fifty who had been with Eleanor since she and Julian had arrived in England, had gray circles under his eyes. No doubt the revels had interrupted his sleep. “And I’ve already sent all but the—ah—hardiest of the housemaids to the country. It wouldn’t do for them to be imposed upon. I’d never forgive myself.”

Julian nodded. “You were quite right to send for me. Where is my sister?” Several unmatched slippers were scattered along the stairs that led toward the drawing room and bedchambers. He gritted his teeth.

“Lady Standish is in her study, sir.”

Julian’s eyebrows shot up. “Her study,” he repeated. Eleanor was hosting an orgy—really, there was no use in pretending it was anything else—but ducked out to conduct an experiment. Truly, the experiments were bad enough, but Julian had always managed to conceal their existence. But to combine scientific pursuits with actual orgies struck Julian as excessive in all directions.

“You,” he said, nudging the sleeping man with the toe of his boot. He was not climbing over drunken bodies, not today, not any day. “Wake up.” The man opened his eyes with what seemed a great deal of effort. “Who are you? No, never mind, I can’t be bothered to care.” The man wasn’t any older than Julian himself, certainly not yet five and twenty, but Julian felt as old as time and as irritable as a school mistress compared to this specimen of self-indulgence. “Get up, restore that gown to its owner, and be gone before I decide to let your father know what you’ve been up to.” As so often happened when Julian ordered people about, this fellow complied.

Julian made his way to Eleanor’s study, and found her furiously scribbling at her writing table, a mass of wires and tubes arranged before her. She didn’t look up at the sound of the door opening, nor when he pointedly closed it behind him. Eleanor, once she was busy working, was utterly unreachable. She had been like this since they were children. He felt a rush of affection for her despite how much trouble she was causing him.

“Eleanor?” Nothing. He stooped to gather an empty wine bottle and a few abandoned goblets, letting them clink noisily together as he deposited them onto a table. Still no response. “Nora?” It almost physically hurt to say his childhood name for her when things felt so awkward and strained between them.

“It won’t work,” came a low drawl. “I’ve been sitting here these past two hours and I haven’t gotten a response.”

Banishing any evidence of surprise from his countenance, Julian turned to see Lord Courtenay himself sprawled in a low chair in a shadowy corner. There oughtn’t to have been any shadows in the middle of the day in a bright room, but trust Lord Courtenay to find one to lurk in.

Julian quickly schooled his face into some semblance of indifference. No, that was a reach; his face was simply not going to let him pretend indifference to Courtenay. He doubted whether anyone had ever shared space with Lord Courtenay without being very much aware of that fact. And it wasn’t only his preposterous good looks that made him so . . . noticeable. The man served as a sort of magnet for other people’s attention, and Julian hated himself for being one of those people. As far as he could tell, the man’s entire problem was that people paid a good deal too much attention to him. But one could hardly help it, not when he looked like that.

 

OMG, this series. (As an aside, it really needs to be classified as a series, Ms. Sebastian–it’ll be much easier to say, “You really need to read that ___ series by Cat Sebastian” instead of “You really need to read those interconnected m/m Regency romance books by Cat Sebastian…they’re called The Soldier’s Scoundrel , The Lawrence Browne Affair , and The Ruin of a Rake.” Because OMG I want to tell everyone to read them ASAP.)

(Just sayin’.)

I have no idea how she does it, but Ms. Sebastian once again gave us a group of characters here that I absolutely dare you not to fall hard and fast for. Admittedly, at first I wasn’t too sure about these two–the labels “prickly and difficult” doesn’t even begin to describe, well, both of them, to an extent and at various times–and I honestly don’t even know when it is that I went from thinking, Ugh, these two… to thinking, Oh! These two… 🙂 but at some point I just knew they had to find a way to be together or….I don’t know what. It wasn’t going to be pretty, though. Fortunately, both Ms. Sebastian and her heroes came through for us on that one, and she did it with style.

Favorite line:

“Missing you is profoundly inconvenient, I’ll have you know. I have things to do and places to be, and all the while I feel like I’ve mislaid a piece of my soul and I won’t get it back until I see you again. That can’t be normal.”

See? Sigh…

So now I’m left anxiously awaiting whatever Ms. Sebastian writes next, and seriously contemplating a binge-reading of all three books, just so I can enjoy the interconnected awesomeness of these characters and their stories.

Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.


Cat Sebastian lives in a swampy part of the South with her husband, three kids, and two dogs. Before her kids were born, she practiced law and taught high school and college writing. When she isn’t reading or writing, she’s doing crossword puzzles, bird watching, and wondering where she put her coffee cup.


New Release Spotlight! CITY BOY–HOT OFF THE ICE #1 by A.E. Wasp


City Boy – Hot Off The Ice 1

By A.E. Wasp


BLURB

Follow the money or follow your heart?

All Bryce Lowery knows how to do is play hockey. He’s been playing professionally since he was fifteen. Twenty years later, he’s rich, famous, tired, and alone. And possibly gay according to his ex-wife.

When a blown tire leads directly to mind-blowing sex with a motorcycle-riding white knight named Dakota, Bryce discovers he is most definitely gay. When his white knight turns out to be the manager of the apple orchard he inherited from some distant relative, he discovers that everything he thought he knew about himself was wrong.

Now Bryce has a tough choice to make, follow the money to a new multimillion dollar contract, or follow his heart into the unknown?

All Dakota Ryan knows how to do is grow apples. Now at twenty-four, he faces losing both his home and his livelihood in one cruel twist of fate.

Then Bryce Lowery crashes into his life like the answer to all Dakota’s prayers. Not only does the gorgeous, older professional athlete have the money to save the orchard, but he’s whispering promises to make all of Dakota’s wildest dreams come true. But Dakota knows better than to give his heart to someone who could leave, and if life has taught him anything, it’s that everyone leaves.

Dakota has a choice, sit back and wait for Bryce to decide his fate, or for the first time in his life, chose what he wants his future to be?

City Boy is a first time gay, fish out of water, May/December love story with a HEA.

Buy on Amazon!
Snippet #1

Dakota sighed, head dropping down onto Bryce’s chest. “So, how was it for you?” He tilted his head up so he could see Bryce’s face. From this angle, his beard looked fluffy, and Dakota had the urge to scratch him under his chin like a big cat.

He could see Bryce searching for the right words, so he didn’t push. The silence stretched comfortably. Seemed like neither of them was in a hurry to leave this unexpected sanctuary and get back to the real world.

“Well, it’s funny,” Bryce said, running his fingers through Dakota’s hair and cupping the back of Dakota’s head in the palm of his hand. “I’ve never liked this after part before with women. I did it because it’s the right thing to do, but I would always make an excuse to get up as soon as possible. But I really want to keep touching you.”

“And that’s good?” Dakota asked.

Bryce smiled down at him, laugh lines crinkling at the edge of his dark brown eyes. “I always wanted it to feel like this.”

Dakota’s heart thudded in his chest. The way Bryce had Dakota tucked up against him felt really good. Scarily good. A part of Dakota’s mind beat its terrified wings against his skull, telling him to get up and leave now. How did this happen? Dakota had a hard time letting his friends get close to him. He certainly didn’t cuddle with strangers.

Dakota had worried that Bryce would somehow imprint on him. Now Dakota wasn’t sure he wanted to let the man go. Not only was Bryce smoking hot, but he was also sweet, considerate, and kind. And, Dakota suspected, had the potential to be fantastic in bed.



SNIPPET #2

What did Dakota see in Bryce’s eyes? His brows lowered as he seemed to be searching for something. Bryce tried to open up and let his emotions show in his eyes, hoping that one of the was what Dakota needed.

Who had he become in these too-short weeks?

This moment seemed separate from any that come before in Bryce’s life. His universe had narrowed to a rundown VW bus at the backend of an orchard in the shadow of the Rocky Mountain where he sat poised on the edge of understanding something he had no name for.

The energy between them built, the lights and the heady smell of the incense swirling around the air. A slight buzz from the brownie made every movement syrupy-slow and fanned Bryce’s desire.

Somewhere inside Bryce, a damn broke. Everything he had ever wanted to feel, everything he had held back or assumed he lacked, crashed over him, and, with a small ooh he closed his eyes, breaking the connection.

Dakota surged forward, pulling Bryce’s shirt off as he lowered him gently to the mattress. Somehow despite being unwilling to stop kissing each other, they managed to get undressed.



SNIPPET #3

“I’ve never seen the ocean.” Dakota said his voice flat. “I’ve never been anywhere.”

Bryce scratched his fingers through Dakota curls, pulling them and letting them bounce back. “I’ve been to so many amazing places.”

“Yeah. I know.” Dakota yanked his head away with frown.

Bryce didn’t let him go, pulling him back against his side. “No, let me finish. All these places were amazing, but I was always kind of sad. I’ve never been with somebody I—someone who is special to me.”

“What about with Nikki?”

“Except for our honeymoon, I never went anyplace romantic alone with Nikki,” he confessed. “Even the honeymoon was awkward.”

Dakota turned on his side and slid his leg over Bryce’s leg. “How? Were you a virgin?” Dakota asked lightly.

Bryce brushed off the joking tone in his voice and answered seriously. “No. Worse. All the things that were supposed to be romantic? I just wasn’t feeling it. I didn’t feel lost in her eyes in the candlelight or anything. I didn’t want to spend hours in bed.”

He ran his hand up and down Dakota’s arm, enjoying the soft tickle of his hair and the firmness of the muscle. “I convinced myself that nobody felt that way; that everyone was faking it because that’s how we were told it’s supposed to feel when you’re in love.”

“And now?” Dakota tensed in his arms.

Bryce pushed up and rolled until he hovered over Dakota, looking him right in his eyes. Dakota was going to listen to him whether he wanted to or not.

“Now, I want to take you down to Mexico, get a cabana on a private beach, one with a giant bed and an outdoor shower. The I’d drag you inside and not come out for two weeks. I want people to bring us coconuts and fresh fish and tequila and leave it at our door.”

Dakota stared back at him, hands on Bryce’s hips. His fingers adding more bruises to the marks he’d already left on Bryce’s skin. “You could do that, couldn’t you?”

“In a heartbeat.” And he wanted to, so badly. Badly enough to give up hockey? If he only had himself to worry about? In a heartbeat.

Author Bio:

After time spent raising children, earning several college degrees, and traveling the world with the U.S. State Department, she is returning to her first love – writing.
A dreamer and an idealist, Amy writes about people finding connection in a world that can seem lonely and magic in a world that can seem all too mundane. She invites readers into her characters’ lives and worlds when they are their most vulnerable, their most human, living with the same hopes and fears we all have. An avid traveler who has lived in big cities and small towns in four different continents, Amy has found that time and distance are no barriers to love. She invites her readers to reach out and share how her characters have touched their lives or how the found families they have gathered around them have shaped their worlds.
Born on Long Island, NY, Amy has lived in Los Angeles, London, and Bangkok. She currently lives in Colorado in a town suspiciously like the ones in her books.

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New Release and Giveaway! IT COULD HAPPEN by Mia Kerick

It Could Happen
by Mia Kerick
Genre: NA Romance (LGBT)
Release Date: June 5th 2017
Dreamspinner Press

Summary:

Three misfits, mismatched in every way—Henry Perkins, Brody Decker, and Danny Denisco—have been friends throughout high school. Now in their senior year, the boys realize their relationship is changing, that they’re falling in love. But they face opposition at every turn—from outside and from within themselves. Moving to the next level will take all the courage, understanding, and commitment they can muster. But it could happen.

Henry is a star athlete and the son of religious parents who have little concern for the future he wants. Brody is a quirky dreamer and adrenaline junkie, and Danny is an emo artist and the target of bullies. Despite their differences they’ve always had each other’s backs, and with each of them facing a new and unique set of challenges, that support is more important than ever. Is it worth risking the friendship they all depend on for the physical and romantic relationship they all desire?

In this unconventional new adult romance, three gay teens brave societal backlash—as well as the chance that they might lose their treasured friendship—to embark on a committed polyamorous relationship.

Add to Goodreads

Buy Link: Amazon

 

Excerpt:

Brody’s notebook

Tuesday, September 23

Memoir of a Stalker—I sincerely hope this is only a temporary title.

I’m not exactly a stalker, but when it comes to Danny and Henry, sometimes I play the part of one.

And the situation with Danny is seriously messed up. I keep telling Henry that it will sort itself out. I hope I’m not lying to him.

Before I picked up Henry for school today, I drove by Danny’s apartment building three times. Or maybe it was five times. I lost count.

Extremely stalkeresque.

I stared at the building each time I drove by, but there was nothing out of the ordinary—one beige cement building, nine nondescript windows with torn screens, five crumbling brick steps leading to a cracked plate glass door, zero landscaping. The place is almost invisible in its plainness. The only thing that draws any attention to the residence is the number of beat-up SUVs, ancient boats on trailers, and motorcycles that have seen better days that surround it. The property looks like a used-vehicle auction lot.

The first three times I passed by, I saw a couple of wrinkled old men with bloated bellies smoking cigarettes on the front walkway. I also noticed about five skinny cats skulking around the property. But no Danny. I was tempted to park behind the row of overgrown shrubs on the corner and wait as long as it took to see if he emerged alone or arm-in-arm with Jared, the jealous fry cook.

But I didn’t stop. I passed by unnoticed… unless Danny happened to glance out the window. Lime-green Jeep Wranglers are hardly stealthy.

There’s no valid reason for me to be snooping on him. Danny Denisco is not my boyfriend. He’s not my best friend’s boyfriend. We’re straight. He’s gay. The whole romance thing is not possible.

Danny’s not a mystery I need to solve. He’s just a guy from the bad part of town who happens to enjoy the darker side of life. He has an extraordinary gift for painting fluorescent sunsets on black velvet without making them look redneck tacky. His poetry could even bring tears to Lionel Wagner’s eyes.

Danny has a fashion sense that, on a good day, could be called peculiar. Most of the time, Danny comes to school looking like a boy witch. He has multiple piercings in his ears, nose, bottom lip, right eyebrow, and probably other places I don’t want to know about. Add to that an emo haircut, complete with sideswept bangs and neon-blue tips, and way too much black eyeliner.

That’s Danny.
Like I said, no mystery.
Danny defines “gay, emo, Goth boy.”
He looks radical, but he just wants what everybody else wants out of life.

And Danny is not my boyfriend. I don’t know how I feel about that.

 

About the Author:

Mia Kerick is the mother of four exceptional children—all named after saints—and five nonpedigreed cats—all named after the next best thing to saints, Boston Red Sox players. Her husband of twenty years has been told by many that he has the patience of Job, but don’t ask Mia about that, as it is a sensitive subject.

Mia focuses her stories on the emotional growth of troubled men and their relationships, and she believes that sex has a place in a love story, but not until it is firmly established as a love story. As a teen, Mia filled spiral-bound notebooks with romantic tales of tortured heroes (most of whom happened to strongly resemble lead vocalists of 1980s big-hair bands) and stuffed them under her mattress for safekeeping. She is thankful to Dreamspinner Press for providing her with an alternate place to stash her stories.

Mia is proud of her involvement with the Human Rights Campaign and cheers for each and every victory made in the name of marital equality. Her only major regret: never having taken typing or computer class in school, destining her to a life consumed with two-fingered pecking and constant prayer to the Gods of Technology.

Contact Mia at miakerick@gmail.com.

 

Author Links:

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Elaine Gibbs has been defined by other people’s words for much of her life: autistic, shifter, adopted, genius, Royal Marine. She has spent a year having her entire world spun around and just when she hopes things have stabilised, a zealot threatens everything she holds dear, including her life.
Alim Kader grew up knowing his family’s expectations and is required to fall in line. Life, however, threw him a massive surprise in the body of the most fascinating woman he has ever known. Now if he could only convince her that his sole desire is to stand beside her, not rescue her.
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Dusk “Doctor Dusky” Keller has never allowed himself to be defined by anyone or anything. Growing up in the Keys with his hippie parents, he ran an animal hospital until a hurricane destroyed it. He never expects to fall straight into lust with an uptight stranger who he sees on his daily beach walks.
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When a group of lonely shifters came together during their service with the Royal marines, they never imagined the strong pack that would develop between them. Channeling their special operative training, they built a security firm with two alpha wolves at the head of a motley crew of shifters not known for playing well-together.
They’ve lived their lives as outcasts from their own individual species of shifters choosing to form a family with each other instead. Until Now. Follow the Blackbird pack as they fall victim to love one by one.
Can they guard their own hearts?
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New Release Review and Giveaway! CASK STRENGTH by Layla Reyne (Irish & Whiskey #2)

Title: CASK STRENGTH
Author: Layla Reyne
Release Date: May 1, 2017
Publisher: Carina Press
Series: Agents Irish & Whiskey
Genres: M/M Romantic Suspense
Word Count: 61,000
Format: Digital
ISBN: 9781488024399

 

Synopsis:

The heart’s a resilient beast…

Professionally, the FBI team of Aidan “Irish” Talley and Jameson “Whiskey” Walker is as good as it gets, closing cases faster than any team at the Bureau. Personally, it’s a different story. Aidan’s feelings for Jamie scare the hell out of him: he won’t risk losing another love no matter how heart-tripping the intimacy between them. And loss is a grim reality with the terrorist Renaud still on their trail, leaving a pile of bodies in his wake.

Going undercover on a new case gets them out of town and off the killer’s radar. They’re assigned to investigate an identity theft ring involving a college basketball team in Jamie’s home state, where Jamie’s past makes him perfect for the role of coach. But returning to the court brings more than old memories.

As secrets and shocking betrayals abound, none may be more dangerous than the one Jamie’s been keeping: a secret about the death of Aidan’s husband that could blow his partner’s world apart and destroy forever the fragile bonds of trust and love building between them.

Find out more at: Carina Press | Amazon | Google Play | Kobo | iTunes | B&N | Goodreads

Excerpt:

“I know our schedule’s fucked, but that face of yours is awfully grim.”

Startling at the full-blast Irish accent, Jamie’s head shot up and the phone slipped from his fingers, clattering to the ground. Pick it up, some instinct ordered, but he was too busy losing the rest of his fucking mind. The veneer of calm shattered and any hope of patience took a flying leap out the window.

Because standing in front of him was his stylishly dressed partner, a messenger bag over one shoulder, a coat tossed over the other, and silver-rimmed aviators nestled in waves of auburn hair. More times than he could count, Jamie had imagined Aidan with his natural hair color, and damn if the reality didn’t surpass each and every one of his fantasies.

Mouth dry, heart racing, cheeks burning, Jamie’s fingers twitched with the urge to weave through the long red strands. Reaching down instead, he grabbed his phone, held it between his palms, and wedged his clasped hands between his knees, forestalling his impulse. He tried to force out a “hello,” but his brain refused to cooperate, all the blood in his body having raced south where his jeans became painfully tight.

Fuck.

He was gone. So far gone. Past casual, past a crush, past simple attraction.

This was Aidan, sans disguises, and Jamie wanted him more than he’d ever wanted anything.

“Is it that bad a dye job?” Aidan asked, interrupting his mental breakdown.

“Ai—” he started, only to be corrected with a brogue-laced, “Ian.”

Jamie blinked, reminded that this was a disguise. It sure as hell didn’t feel like one. “I wasn’t expecting this.” His eyes raked over Aidan again, taking it all in. Dressed in jeans and a navy V-neck sweater, the dark blues set off his pale skin, the freckles, his autumn eyes, that hair…

“Fuck,” he muttered out loud.

Aidan shifted on his feet in front of him. “I said I was making a few more changes.”

“Yeah, but this—” he spread his arms wide, the motion totally inadequate “—is more than a fucking few.”

Their gazes locked, heat sparking. “Problem, Jamie?” Aidan’s eyes flickered down to the very obvious problem.

“You gotta stop that.”

He dropped his messenger bag and shrugged the coat off his shoulder. “Stop what?”

“Saying my name in that accent.”

“Mr. Walker, then,” he said with a smirk.

Way too smooth.

Jamie propped his elbows on this knees and covered his face with his hands. “God no,” he groaned. “Not that either.”

Aidan laughed as the buzzer went off on the conveyor behind them.

Leather smacked the backs of Jamie’s hands, and he snagged Aidan’s coat before it hit the ground.

Leather?

“Cover that up,” Aidan said, eyeing his crotch. “And get yourself together. Debrief in the car.” Turning, he headed for the spinning luggage carousel, giving Jamie a prime view of his sinfully fitted jeans.

Get himself together…

Yeah, right.

Copyright © 2017 Layla Reyne

Review:

I enjoyed the suspense of Cask Strength–definitely had me on the edge of my seat, especially for the last 20% or so–couldn’t put it down! Though Irish and Whiskey are mainly dealing with their new undercover case here, a major plot thread from book one ( Single Malt ) is also still a pretty big deal (and continues to be into the next book) so if you haven’t read the first book, you’re definitely going to be behind. I liked both Jamie (Whiskey) and Aidan (Irish) a lot and loved them together, though Aidan’s behavior for much of the book was pretty frustrating. It was more understandable when we saw things from his POV, but still…hopefully they’ll manage to stay in the place they are at the end of this book and not make a backward slide relationship-wise like they did between 1 and 2.

Rating: 3 1/2 stars / C+

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

Other books in the Agents Irish & Whiskey series:

 

SINGLE MALT

Available Now: Carina Press | Amazon | Google Play | Kobo | iTunes | B&N| Goodreads

“Sexy, smart and suspenseful – this book has it all.”—HelenKay Dimon, author of MR. & MR. SMITH

 

“SINGLE MALT is full of explosive chemistry, captivating characters, and edge-of-your-seat suspense. A must read for any romantic suspense fan!”—Megan Erickson, USA Today Bestselling Author

 

BARREL PROOF

On Sale August 7, 2017: Carina Press | Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iTunes | Google Play | Goodreads

 

About Layla Reyne:

2016 RWA® Golden Heart® Finalist, Layla Reyne, was raised in North Carolina and now calls San Francisco home. She enjoys weaving her bi-coastal experiences into her stories, along with adrenaline fueled suspense and heart pounding romance. When she’s not writing stories to excite her readers, she downloads too many books, watches too much television, and cooks too much food with her scientist husband, much to the delight of their smushed-face, leftover-loving dogs.

Connect with Layla: Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Goodreads

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A Conversation with Layla Reyne, Author of SINGLE MALT (Agents Irish & Whiskey #1)

Welcome, Layla! What 5 things should readers know about you?

  1. I’m a North Carolina native currently living in the San Francisco Bay Area. My bi-coastal experience, with travel in-between, is reflected in my stories. In Single Malt, you’ve got Aidan, whose Irish family resettled in the Bay Area, and Jamie, who was was born and raised in North Carolina before moving to San Francisco. Moreover, series settings hop between San Francisco, Texas and North Carolina.
  2. As a mechanic’s granddaughter, I’m fond of fast cars, and forever regretting the 1964½ cherry red Mustang convertible I passed up as a teen when I didn’t know any better. Vintage American muscle cars are my weakness!
  3. I’m a foodie. Food will always be featured in my books and on my social media feeds. #SorryNotSorry for making you hungry.
  4. Ditto whiskey and coffee, if that wasn’t obvious from the book titles and my characters’ fondness for both.
  5. My grandmother sat me in front of All My Children at age three, my parents in front of Hill Street Blues shortly thereafter, so guess what I write… Romantic Suspense. I love suspense with a heavy dose of unresolved sexual tension that leads to romance. Translation: Readers are going to get plot-heavy stories from me, with action and things that go boom, kissing and sexy times, and some cliffhangers too. That’s the structure I learned, the one I love, so fair warning!

LOL! We have been warned!

 

Where did the inspiration for this book come from?

I was introduced to romance and suspense at an early age, which later matured into my own tastes for action and suspense with a romantic twist (e.g., The X-Files, Castle, etc.). When I started writing, first in fanfiction then in original fiction, romantic suspense was a natural fit. Before Single Malt, I wrote a male/female romantic suspense that was an RWA Golden Heart Finalist. While that manuscript ran the contest circuit and through the query trenches, I wrote Single Malt. Already a fan of male/male romance, Irish and Whiskey came to me from the start as two male leads, and after enjoying the male point of view more in my previous manuscript and in fanfiction, I followed where inspiration led—to a continuation series with these two complicated men who deserve their shot at happily ever after. As for the plot itself, I live in Silicon Valley—cyber-everything is a way of life—and after test driving a certain electric car, I couldn’t get the cyberterror angle out of my head.

Awesome! Thanks for sharing 🙂

 

How long have you been writing, and what (or who) inspired you to start?

Does the book I wrote in grade school about the family dog count? That was probably the first thing, LOL. But writing really took off for me in high school, mostly as a rebellion against math and science (and yet, I married a scientist, joke’s on me). Two things spurred the then-hobby on: a twelfth grade writing portfolio, for which I wrote an Epilogue to Virginia Woolf’s To The Lighthouse, and discovering The X-Files and the glorious world of fanfiction. I read and wrote extensively throughout college, including a student television stint, then was diverted a bit by my other career, before fandom and fanfiction pulled me back in, only this time it wasn’t a hobby for long. Original ideas took hold and now my debut novel is published. Hooray!

Ah, fanfiction! Good times…

 

What are you working on right now?

Editing AIW3, developing ideas for AIW spin-offs, and writing a male/male contemporary sports romance. It’s a juggling act, especially with my day-job, but I wouldn’t trade living my dream for anything!

Wow! Can’t wait!

 

What can readers look for from you in the next year?

All three books in the Agents Irish and Whiskey series – Single Malt, Cask Strength, and Barrel Proof – will be released in 2017. Yes, I left readers with a wee bit of a cliffhanger (Okay, a big one), but it’ll be short wait times between books to find out what happens!

Good to know! Nothing worse than having to wait a year+ to find out how the cliffhanger ending will be resolved…

 

What are you currently reading, and what are your thoughts about it so far?

Allegiance of Honor by Nalini Singh. My e-shelf, while 99% romance, crosses subgenres and pairings. I’ve loved the Psy-Changeling series since I inhaled it the summer before last, and I’m loving my dive back into it. The pairings are compelling, the mythology well-built, and living in the Bay Area, I especially enjoy the reimagined San Francisco her world is set in.

I STILL need to read Nalini Singh…but I keep hearing good things; I think I’m going to have to bump her up the TBR list!

 

If you had to “sell” your book in a single Tweet, what would you say?

Widowed FBI agent falls hard for his new, handsome cyber agent partner while investigating cybercrimes and his late husband’s murder.

Perfect! Thanks so much, Layla!

 

About the Author:

2016 RWA® Golden Heart® Finalist, Layla Reyne, was raised in North Carolina but now calls San Francisco home. She enjoys weaving her bi-coastal experiences into her stories, along with adrenaline fueled suspense and heart pounding romance. When she’s not writing stories to excite her readers, she downloads too many books, watches too much television, and cooks too much food with her scientist husband, much to the delight of their smushed-face, leftover-loving dogs. You can find her online at http://www.laylareyne.com/.

Connect with Layla: Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Goodreads

 

Title: Single Malt
Author: Layla Reyne
Series: Agents Irish & Whiskey
Genre: M/M Romantic Suspense
Release Date: February 27, 2017
Publisher: Carina Press

 

Synopsis:

Eight months after the car crash that changed everything, FBI agent Aidan Talley is back at work. New department, new case and a new partner. Smart, athletic and handsome, Jameson Walker is twelve years his junior. Even if Aidan was ready to move on—and he’s not—Jamie is off-limits.

Jamie’s lusted after Aidan for three years, and the chance to work with San Francisco’s top agent directly is too good to pass up. Aidan is prickly—to put it mildly—but a growing cyber threat soon proves Jamie’s skills invaluable.

Jamie’s talents paint a target on his back, and Aidan is determined to protect him. But with hack after hack threatening a high-security bio-containment facility, time is running out to thwart a deadly terrorist attack. They’ll have to filter out distractions, on the case and in their partnership, to identify the real enemy, solve the case and save thousands of lives, including their own.

Available now: Carina Press | Amazon | Google Play | Kobo | iTunes| B&N| Goodreads

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A Conversation with Suzanne van Rooyen, Author of SCARDUST (and a Giveaway!)

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Welcome, Suzanne! What 5 things should readers know about you?

  1. I’m originally from South Africa and grew up in Johannesburg.
  2. In the past 8 years I’ve lived in 4 countries on 3 continents.
  3. I’ve never been on a roller-coaster.
  4. I have a black and tan shiba inu named Lego and he is awesome!
  5. I became a published author after my first attempt at NaNoWriMo

Lego is an awesome name! (And yay! for NaNoWriMo—awesome!)

 

Where did the inspiration for this book come from?

A lot of different sources, but mostly from my own childhood desire to be an astronaut, my continuous interest in space travel and fascination with the Mars One program, and then there was this boy I used to know… 😉

Nice!

 

How long have you been writing, and what (or who) inspired you to start?

I’ve always enjoyed making up stories but attempted my first ‘novel’ when I was about 11. It pretty awful Philip Pullman fan-fiction but it started what would become a teenage hobby. I only started taking writing more seriously in my twenties when I realized some of my stories might be worth publishing. A love of reading definitely inspired me to start trying to write my own stories, and I have my mom to thank for always making books such a special and important part of my life.

Moms are the best 🙂

 

What are you working on right now? What can readers look for from you in the next year?

I’m currently working on a new genre for me: high fantasy. I’m hoping I’ll have more news about that soon! Later this year, my YA science fiction novel, Obscura Burning, will be republished by Harmony Ink Press and should be on shelves again sometime in November so readers should keep an eye out for that.

Wow—high fantasy—sounds great! Good luck with the re-release!

 

If you had to “sell” your book in a single Tweet, what would you say?

When a meteor crashes in the Texas desert, aspiring astronaut, Raleigh, finds himself inextricably entaentangledentangled with a beautiful amnesiac who could shatter both his heart and his dream of Mars.

Fantastic! Thanks so much, Suzanne 🙂

Keep reading to find out more about Suzanne and her newest book, SCARDUST.

ABOUT SUZANNE VAN ROOYEN

Suzanne van Rooyen

Suzanne is a tattooed storyteller from South Africa. She currently lives in Sweden and is busy making friends with the ghosts of her Viking ancestors. Although she has a Master’s degree in music, Suzanne prefers conjuring strange worlds and creating quirky characters. When she grows up, she wants to be an elf – until then, she spends her time (when not writing) wall climbing, buying far too many books, and entertaining her shiba inu, Lego.

Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Goodreads

 

Scardust Cover

SCARDUST
by Suzanne van Rooyen
Publication Date: February 8, 2016
Genres: New Adult, Gay, LGBT, Science Fiction, Romance

SYNOPSIS: Dead Rock, Texas, 2037

Raleigh Williams made a promise to his brother before he died, that he’d scatter his ashes on Mars. Desperate to leave a life of bad memories behind and start over in the Martian colony, Raleigh fully intends to keep that promise. But his plans are thwarted when a meteor near-misses him in the desert, and Raleigh finds in its crater not debris or even a spacecraft, but a man covered in swirling scars and with no memory of who he is. At least he looks like a man—a man Raleigh can’t seem to keep his eyes off of—but whenever they touch it ignites a memory swap between them.

Raleigh agrees to help Meteor Man piece together his life through their cosmic connection. But the memory share goes both ways, and Raleigh becomes inexplicably entangled with a guy who is everything he needs—everything good that Raleigh is not—but might not even be human. As their minds and worlds collide, reality unravels and Raleigh must face a painful truth, one that could shatter his dreams of finding love, reaching Mars, and fulfilling his brother’s last wish.

 

PURCHASE: Amazon | Amazon CA | Amazon UK | PRINT | B&N | Kobo | iBooks

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Book Blitz and Giveaway! DERANGED by Niko McQueen (Ivy Hollow Chronicles)

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Deranged
by Niko McQueen
(Ivy Hollow Chronicles, #1)
Publication date: February 11th 2014
Genres: Adult, Romance

Synopsis:
Adam Rossmore is a rich party boy who doesn’t answer to anyone. He’s played the orphan card for too long and it’s gotten him out of every DUI, arrest, and fine.

Until now.

When a judge slaps him with community service at the insane asylum, Ivy Hollow, Adam thinks it’s all a joke. Until the doors lock and he starts meeting the residents.

Christian Hale has lived at Ivy Hollow his entire life. He seeks solace in his music—and whatever orderly happens to be nearby.

When Adam hears Christian play the piano for the first time, the music draws him deep into Christian’s web and he must fight an arousal that is both confusing and exciting.

 

Excerpt:

Zach chuckled like he’d just found a secret hallway that led to the Glee backlot. “Oh, you’d be surprised.” He wagged his eyebrows and bit his lower lip in an awkward impression of a seductive hooker.

“Dude. We have got to work on your moves. If not, you’re seriously going to die a virgin.”

Zachary’s face fell and Adam felt bad. “Sorry, but it’s true. Not even gay men are going to fall for that . . . Christ, they’re probably harder to please than women.”

He shuddered and slid his chair beneath the desk. “Not possible. Chicks are a no win.”

Adam laughed and they wandered down the hall toward the cafeteria. A sudden chill raced over his arms and yanked him to a stop. He grabbed Zach’s forearm and pulled him to a stop, then glanced over his shoulder.

Sure enough, Christian stood halfway down the darkened hall on the far side of the station. Adam forced his attention to stay on the upper half of Christian’s body. He’d pulled that dark sheet of hair back into a ponytail and wore a button-down white shirt, untucked, cuffs unbuttoned. He may or may not have had the same dark jeans on, but Adam wasn’t about to look any closer. Even without dropping his gaze, he could tell that Christian was in his bare feet. The urge to look was nearly more than he could bear. A deep need to see if they were as slender and perfect as his fingers coiled tightly in Adam’s belly until it filled the space and extended lower. Adam felt like a sixth-grader peering into the girls’ locker room. He had to get out of here.

Zachary pulled out of his grip and marched down the hall toward Christian, shooing him away like a stray puppy. “You know you’re not supposed to be wandering around.”

Adam flinched. He didn’t feel good about Zachary’s unprovoked attack on Christian. Yelling at a psycho didn’t seem like the best policy. But he didn’t want to chase after Zach and get any closer to Christian, either. Christian’s gaze never left Adam’s, not even when Zach got within feet of him. He melted into the shadow and Zach stopped, hands on his hips.

“I’m serious, Christian. When we get back from dinner, you’d better be back in your room.”

Adam wasn’t about to fidget under the scrutiny, but he could feel the intense heat like Christian’s hands were doing the inventory instead of his eyes from fifty feet away. Tingles erupted across every inch of his skin and his balls tightened like he was about to come. Adam forced his arms not to move even though he wanted to cover himself.

Two days ago, he’d have whipped around and marched into the cafeteria, but today he couldn’t seem to make his feet obey. And as bad as he wanted to believe it was because he didn’t want to leave Zach alone, an unsettling feeling told him there was another reason.

One he was going to have to explore in the darkness of his room later tonight.

Zach huffed and strolled back to Adam, a bizarre swing in his hips. Adam could have slapped him. No one walks like that. Not even hookers. Good shit he had his work cut out for him.

Zach brushed past Adam and through the double doors at the end of the hallway. Adam still stood in the echoing expanse of hallway. Somewhere in the darkness to his left, Christian watched.

He turned slowly and forced his hips not to swing even one inch.

Deranged

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AUTHOR BIO:Niko

Niko currently lives in Charlotte NC with her four crazy roommates. She spends her days watching korean dramas and daydreaming of hunky guys falling in love with each other. She dreams of traveling the world gypsy style with her laptop and spinning awesome love stories.

Author links:
www.facebook.com/niko.mcqueen.54
https://twitter.com/niko_mcqueen
https://filthylittlewords.wordpress.com/
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7847507.Niko_McQueen

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